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I've been doing this project, supported by my awesome Patreon Patrons, called Recycled Comics. You may have seen me mention it. What I'm doing is taking old comic books, ones for which the copyrights have been lost or abandoned, and removing all the text, so that I can write new text for them. I've taken previously disconnected stories, and reworked them to function in a shared sci-fi universe, the same story universe that most of my sci-fi stories take place in. The third issue is wrapping up now, and you can read all of it over at the Recycled Comics site.
BUT the exciting thing I want to share today is that the first print volume is out today! It's a full-color, high-quality paperback containing the first three issues, and all the one-pagers that came in between. You can pick it up here, or on your country's Amazon site.
I will also have copies of the book (along with my other new book, Peacemaker) at EPIC next week if you are going to be there, and want to take a look! I'll be giving a reading from Peacemaker, and selling and signing books afterward as usual.
My latest book, Peacemaker and Other Stories is out today!
The new volume begins with "Peacemaker", a newly refinished novella that I originally wrote back in 2009. The story won the R.M. Miller Award for Outstanding Fiction in 2010, but the award did not include publication (it's a scholarship award for fiction writers), so this book is the first place this story has seen print. It's about a Prince in the clockwork kingdom of The Dominion who discovers a dark family secret, and must choose where his loyalties lay. (If you're familiar with the mythology of my fantasy stories, this takes place during the Clockwork Era, which is the era of relative peace that followed the turmoil of the Shadow Era.)
Following the novella is 31 (31!) SF/F flash fiction stories, a few of which have never before seen print.
I'll be reading from this book, and have copies available, at EPIC this year, if you want to pick one up. If you won't be there this time, there is always Amazon!
And stay tuned: I've got another book coming out in time for EPIC. I'll give you a hint: It's made almost entirely from recycled material.
I'm doing a thing for Valentine's Day, through Manawaker.
I'm giving away a bunch of eBooks (no catch, just free books) this week, and I'll be donating to some important organizations in exchange for reviews on Manawaker products.
If you want to participate, the details - and the links to the free books and review locations - are in this blog post over on Manawaker. Feel free to share that post with your networks, if you feel so inclined.
In MiniMetro, you have to plan an underground train system. Pick a city (the decision affects the shape of the bodies of water as well as the types of trains available), then try to keep up with the randomly generated stations that pop up around the city. You always start with three stations, easy-peasey, then more pop up day after day, and you have to keep them all connected. Your available stable of tracks, locomotives, carriages, interchange platforms, and bridges builds up slowly week by week as people move about the city, but you are not given enough resources to actually keep up with demand for transport. You just have to do the best you can with what you have, until eventually a station gets too crowded for too long and the challenge ends. The more people you move before that time, the higher your score.
It's a relaxing and kind of pretty game. The interface is minimal and slick, the controls are super simple (just draw lines) and the boards end up looking like classic underground train maps. The music and sound effects are dynamic and soothing. They are based on what you're doing in the game, as your rail system gets more complex, the music gets more complex. It's the first non-narrative-driven game that I've really enjoyed in a really long time.
In-game leader-boards tell you how you are doing in each city compared to your friends, and each day has a daily challenge that allows everyone to play the same map - with all the station pop-ups coming at the same time and place to make it a fair comparison.
Here is an animated GIF screenshot of my most recent attempt to lift my high-score in New York (in night-mode because night-mode is available):
That was about 20 minutes of gameplay. Of course it doesn't show the trains and passengers, just a record of how and where I changed up my lines as new stations appeared.
If all that sounds interesting, it's available on Steam. It was a bit cheaper during the recent sale, but I din't know how neat it was until after the sale was over. Still, it's not a terribly pricey game.
I would be pleased to have more friends to compare high-scores with. Try to beat my London score. It's pretty high.
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