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August 2005

 

I'm pleased to announce the beginning of a personal newsletter. This is the first one. I will try to post a new newsletter on my websites www.darrellbain.com/ and www.sff.net/people/dbain each month. There will also be a link there to check archives for previous newsletters.

What's the purpose of this newsletter? Well, twofold. It's an easy way to update readers, fans, publishers, agents, movie moguls and other interested parties about what's going on with my writing. Secondly, it's a good way to connect with fans. I'm asked many questions in letters I get which aren't necessarily related to my writing. And it seems a number of folks are interested in what I'm reading, what my opinion is on certain subjects, what's happening with my family, and so on.

In the near future, I shall post a link to my biography. Not a book, just a few things I've done and places I've been in my life. I don't know exactly when that will be available so please drop back by periodically. In fact, drop back by periodically anyway. I'll try to make the newsletter interesting. Presently I plan to compose a new letter every month or so, but no promises.

Okay, so let's get started.

The Melanin Apocalypse     First, I'd like to report that my newest novel, THE MELANIN APOCALYPSE has been released as an e-book at Fictionwise.com and Twilight Times. This is a very controversial book and is receiving great reviews, but I'm sure I'll get some stones thrown my way from people who read the book, but who don't bother reading my afterword. Shucks, I'll probably have to dodge some rocks anyway, but at least I tried to explain my state of mind while writing The Melanin Apocalypse.

On the same subject, I'm very excited that this book will become my first Hard Cover publication. The exact date hasn't been set but it will be sometime in 2006.

Second, my first audio book has been released, the big E-book best seller ALIEN INFECTION. You can find details on the audio page at this web site, or go directly to www.double-dragon-ebooks.com/ for more info and purchase. The audio book will also be available at audible.com and amazon.com in the near future. ALIEN INFECTION is also scheduled for mass market paperback publication in 2006.

On the personal side, my wife just celebrated her 75th birthday (and yes, folks, she is almost nine years older than me). I planned and brought off a complete surprise birthday party, thanks in part to the help of my two stepdaughters, Patricia Pass and Colleen Cargill. By the way, Pat and Colleen are both teachers and I'm consulting with them on the book I'm presently writing, untitled as yet, but dealing with mind reading. The highlight of the party was the bouquet of 75 big red roses. You have to see them to believe what a beautiful sight that many red roses together make! For any of you guys who are getting on in years, I wholeheartedly recommend giving your wife or significant other as many roses as she has had birthdays. Trust me—you won't go wrong! Actually, I doubt you can go very wrong by giving any number of roses, even one!

Next, the edits were just completed for THE ORIGINAL SEX GATES NOVEL. This is The Sex Gates as I originally wrote it without a collaborator. It has a completely and widely divergent ending, is complete and answers all questions in one volume, has one more major character and several more supporting ones. It is now available at eReader.com and should be available at Fictionwise.com as an e-book in September, and plans are in the works for an audio and print version. Come back and visit periodically and I'll let you know when the audio and print are ready.

I'm beginning to get a lot of fan letters (almost all e-mail, a reflection of the times. Hardly anyone writes real letters any more). I assure you, I thoroughly enjoy hearing from my readers and always answer my mail, even the few letters where I've been criticized for one thing or another. There's a link on the web site where you can write me. Or if you don't want to go back there, just click here.

Undeserved bad luck. One of our relatives has had a real run: his mother was diagnosed with breast cancer two years ago; his wife, the only woman he ever dated, was diagnosed with another type of cancer and recently passed away while still in her forties. His stepfather has just been diagnosed with terminal lung cancer. And yesterday his house was hit by lightning and burned to the ground. If anyone has an inkling of who or what orders those kind of events, please pass the word that he's had enough.

I was asked why I dedicated Savage Survival to a bunch of convicts. It's really simple. My son is spending some time behind bars because of getting mixed up with drugs, and he and several friends provided me with a very extensive dictionary of prison and criminal slang. I used it for some of the vernacular in scenes from Savage Survival. I saved it and used some more of it in THE MELANIN APOCALYPSE. By the way, The Melanin Apocalypse is the number one best seller in the suspense/thriller category at Fictionwise.com while I'm writing this.

I have a fan (who has become a friend, though I've never met him personally) who has mastered more trades in his forty years than anyone I've ever known. He is an aviator/instructor, qualified in a plethora of aircraft; a former policeman; an animal trainer; a brilliant mechanic; etc. He's another guy who has had an incredible run of bad luck. He tells me he shouldn't have spit on that Gypsy. I'm tempted to write the story of his last two years, but I doubt most people would believe it. He's the one who was responsible for getting me to finally write another book in the Williard Brothers (aka Medics Wild!) series. The fourth book in the series will be out as an e-book in a month or two and in print next year.

I'm currently re-reading John Barnes' "Mother of Storms" and Stephen Coonts' "Flight of The Intruder." I highly recommend both these books; I've read them many times. "Mother of Storms" was one of Barnes's first books, and I don't think he's equaled it in any of the ones he's written since. He did write a very entertaining science fiction novel, "Finity" that was very thought provoking. I'm about ready to read that one again, too.

And a note about how I'm enjoying "retirement" after closing our Christmas tree farm. I love it! I'm writing several books a year and hope I can keep it up for many years to come! I guarantee you it is much more fun than getting out on a tractor on a cold, windy December morning, or swinging a shearing knife for hours at a time in the middle of August.

One question I've been asked: are there any drawbacks to being a writer? Yes, there are. My main gripe is that the more I write, the less time I have to read! There's another problem with being a writer: supply exceeds demand by a wide margin, and it gets harder and harder for a new writer to get published. A few years ago, when the E-book publishing business was getting off the ground, it provided an outlet for many writers who hadn't had much luck with print publishers. Unfortunately, some of the earlier books (including some of mine) weren't edited very well (or at all) and it gave E-books a less than admirable reputation among professionals for a time. That has changed now. The quality of E-books has improved considerably and any E-book publishers worthy of the name have both good acquisition editors and good book editors.

E-books are designed to be downloaded and read on PPCs, PDAs, laptops, desktops, dedicated E-book readers, and lately cell phones are being used to read them. E-books are less expensive than print and you can carry around a hundred or more books with you wherever you go. That's a nice way to pack for a vacation, folks!

I think this will do it for now. Some pork chops with dressing and pumpkin pie are both calling my name. More next month.

Darrell Bain
August 2005
Shepherd, Texas

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