I have been painting panels for the next issue of Salvage (Issue #2), and I am leaning toward a more painterly style, no hard lines, no pencils visible. Issue #1 on Comixology: https://www.comixology.com/Salvage-1/digital-comic/175314 –Based on the book Salvage (Masque Books, 2013) http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00ED0081O
Tear Apart Worlds – PDF
Tear Apart Worlds – EPUB
Tear Apart Worlds – MOBI
Several readers have asked for details on how the “seaborn books” are connected, and in what ways. Most of the books and stories I have written over the last ten years are tied together in one timeline, sharing characters, a couple of them extending over a generation. A few clearly share the same setting–our near-future world, with seaborn characters, but without Kassandra making much of an appearance–or not at all (Salvage).
You may have noticed that there’s a genre mix, from what would neatly fall into fantasy, urban fantasy, dark fantasy, etc. to stories that could legitimately be categorized as science fiction or tech-thriller (Nanowhere, Salvage), to stories that may not clearly fall into any bucket (Winterdim). Futuristic fantasy?
You may have noticed that most of these stories take place in the future. That’s on purpose. You could also look at the stories in this timeline and see the advance of technology from one to the next–especially when you get twenty or ninety years into the future, from Nanowhere to Teller and finally to Winterdim. I am a software engineer and technologist, so I am always interested in the progress of technology, where it will lead us, and where it will be applied in the fields of health, culture, military, and–very important to me–in or on the ocean, in support of preserving ocean wildlife as well as how we will continue to provide enough seafood for the world’s every growing market for it.
Want to print out the timeline, or get a closer look? http://www.saltwaterwitch.com/img/TheSeabornBooks-ChrisHoward_rev9.pdf
Let me know if you see typos, problems with the order or dates. I threw this together quickly, a lot of of it coming out of long email discussions with Georg (https://www.facebook.com/gtrimborn), Lorena (https://plus.google.com/117462233542667604483), and others. Also, I mention characters, plot direction for future books, and other details that you may consider spoilers, so read some of the longer blocks of fine print at your own risk!
I want to show off some beautiful aquacultured (not taken from natural reef formations) live rock I purchased from Tampa Bay Aquaculture. They picked out the perfect pieces for my tank, and sent them via Southwest Airlines cargo to Manchester–air cargo is the only way to go when you’re getting live rock. It’s in the warm Gulf waters one moment (on the farm so to speak) and several hours later it’s in your home. Live = fresh = intact bacteriological system. Take a look at the pics–five days after placing the rock in my tank. This rock came with some nice tube coral colonies (Cladocora arbuscula), several different kinds of Ascidean sp. (Sea squirts), and various other clusters of mollusks, sponge, coralline algae.
I’ve had a nanoreef tank going for a while–let’s just say a minimalist setup (after being away from the hobby for a decade). Over the last several months I’ve been building out a nice compact (12g total water volume) system for my home office (where I write) and my son’s work space–with everything I want in a reef tank–nice lighting, not too big, self-contained, battery backup for all pumps, skimmer, reactor. It will be a mixed tank–aquacultured coral species from both the Caribbean and Pacific, refugium for macro-algae, sea-plants, and a couple groves of mangrove trees.
Except for live sand for the bed, some coralline algae rubble, and six Mangrove trees, everything you see behind the glass came in the big box from Tampa Bay Aquaculture.
I’m loving this new tank, and I haven’t even moved in any of my corals yet!
I know. I know, it’s been too long. I’ve been busy working on the Salvage comic, and left Saltwater Witch to just sit there for a couple months. Well, I’m back in business on Saltwater Witch, with three more pages–the rest of chapter 17 scripted and storyboarded. I just need to do the art and lettering. Soon. Very soon! In the meantime I’ve posted a new page for chapter 17, Kassandra and her grandmother still discussing the coming problems with Tharsaleos. The talk’s getting a little more intense.
I’m happy to announce that my story collection, The Wine of Ravens, is live! (I have to add that I love this cover!)
Like a lot F&SF readers, D&D players, and geeks in high-school and college in the 70s and 80s, I was into Norse mythology, Vikings, longboats, and everything that went along with that chaotic, and often violent, world–although I probably went a bit far, and thought Vikings so passé that I changed my focus to the Saxons, Angles, Jutes, and Frisians instead. Enter my character, Aldred the Saxon, a sort of geeky version of a teenager living at that time, among the chaos, expansion, tensions with a fading Rome, and other territorial disputes. If you ever liked Robert E. Howard’s Cormac Mac Art stories, or Andrew J. Offutt’s Cormac books, you’ll be a fan of Aldred.
From the back cover:
If you can see into the future, gods will take notice of you. Aldred’s brother is killed unjustly, and Aldred is forbidden to bury or honor him. He defies the decree, and makes a pact with strangers, an old man who won’t show his face and a giant who requires a final battle before he lights the pyre for Aldred’s brother. Aldred returns to face his doom and discovers that an agreement he has made in life pursues him after death.
The Wine of Ravens is a set of six stories that cover a good part of the life of Aldred the Saxon, from his first meeting with old One-eye (Diminisher of Peace), his journey across Europe, tangling with the unjust, with various forms of death, to the Near East exploring belief among the ruins of the once great Roman city of Caesarea Maritima (The Breaker of Gods), and then back north to his homeland and across the channel to Britain.
The story “Diminisher of Peace” was originally published in The Harrow, and later as part of the short story collection Always Becoming. The other five stories, “The Witch of Khoreios”, “The Breaker of Gods”, “The Feeder of Ravens”, “Wonderdeed”, and “The Wine of Ravens”, along with Diminisher, were serialized in Sacred Twilight. Together they form a fairly complete tale of the life of Aldred, a Saxon who can best be described as a researcher with a gift, working around 420 CE for Wodan, a god who gave up one of his eyes for wisdom. This apparently gave him a leg up on how to deal with the Ragnarok, but also gave him the drive to spend a good deal of time trying to plan and prepare for that final battle of the gods. Aldred was presumably just one of several people Wodan gathered up from an unfortunate end to send on dangerous missions.
I started writing about Aldred in the early 1980s, and wrote the first drafts of most of these stories around that time. I refined them in the mid-1990s, and did a complete edit pass before sending them to Sacred Twilight around 2006. Look for the comic edition of Diminisher of Peace in 2015!