The Distant Horizon Series
Distant Horizon is the first book in a series of novels. Young Adult Dystopia.
The Community is safe.
Unless you have superpowers.
Sixty years ago, a hallucinogenic plague annihilated half the world’s population, leading to the formation of the Community—an international government that promises its citizens safety, security, and efficiency. Every day, Community citizens swallow a mandatory pill to ensure their immunity to the plague. A year after graduating high school, they take the Health Scan.
Most pass, and continue with their lives. Others disappear.
Eighteen-year-old Jenna Nickleson hasn’t taken the pill since her senior year in high school. She feels more alive without it, and she hasn’t shown any signs of infection—at least, not until two days after a surprise Health Scan is announced and Special Forces arrive at her university campus.
Spurred by the recent string of hallucinations, Jenna searches for any inkling of what happens to those who fail the scan. Rumor has it that they’re sent away for treatment and, once cured, receive a menial job. But when she uncovers the cruel truth behind the plague, her ideal world is shattered.
Underneath the illusion of safety, Special Forces agents harbor a dark secret.
The plague is a lie.
Fractured Skies is the second book in the Distant Horizon series. Young Adult Dystopia
Not all monsters are beasts.
The government’s secret transformation of beasts—subhuman creatures made from humans with powers—means that the Community’s utopian ideals of safety and security are lies.
Thanks to a high-ranking telepath, nineteen-year-old Jenna Nickleson knows what it’s like to go through one of those transformations. During a mission for the rebellion, the telepath cursed her with false “memory seeds” that attack her mind with horrifying visions of being turned into a beast.
If Jenna ever wants to see the Community be secure, she needs to figure out how to end the transformations, remove the government making her cherished Community a front for a nightmare, and get those memory seeds out of her head before she loses herself.
The Glitch Saga
Whispers in the Code is the first book in a series of short novels and novellas. (A spin-off series from Distant Horizon). Upper YA/NA Sci Fi.
A haunted airship made from living people…
Nineteen-year-old hacker Tim Zaytsev is a traitor, but he never expected his betrayal would earn him the highest honor among the international community—a place among the Camaraderie’s elite council.
Ushered into a glamorous lifestyle of fancy airships and a chance to use his programming skills to better the world, Tim is assigned the task of finishing their secret Legion Spore project—a living airship made from shapeshifters.
Inside the Legion Spore, dozens of humans have been forcibly hooked to the vessel’s computer, but fragments of their memories reside in the airship’s internal code as glitches. Their faces appear in the walls, and their whispers invade the code of the Camaraderie’s base. Tim’s ability to telepathically connect with computers means that he’s the only one who can make the ship fully functional.
But programming a computer is one thing. Dealing with a haunted, living airship will not only test Tim’s wit, but his sanity. If he can’t learn to trust himself and his abilities, his mind will be trapped in the Legion Spore as just another whisper in the code.
Ghost of a Memory is the second book in The Glitch Saga. Upper YA/NA Sci Fi.
Some ghosts refuse to be forgotten.
Nineteen-year-old council member, Tim Zaytsev, oversees the Legion Spore—a living airship made from shapeshifters. He’s tasked with removing glitches, fragments of the shapeshifters’ memories that reside as “ghosts” in the ship’s code.
But as he removes each glitch, the ship shows an alarming trend toward developing its own personality. It clearly prefers to work with Tim instead of his superiors, and its haunting dreams invade Tim’s sleep, filling his mind with false memories of an affair with the alluring Lady Black, a council member known for her seductive advances. As the dreams intensify, he can’t even look at his loving girlfriend without remembering Lady Black’s touch.
Determined to perform his duties to the council while remaining faithful, Tim searches for the source of the Legion Spore’s rogue personality. But as the dreams descend into nightmares, Tim begins to suspect they aren’t random glitches; they’re warnings from the “ghost” of Lady Black’s lover.
To ensure a lifetime with the woman he loves, Tim must find the source of the Legion Spore’s rogue personality before the vessel usurps his mind, trapping him like all the other “ghosts” in the code.
Spirits of a Glitch is the third and final book in The Glitch Saga. Upper YA/NA Sci Fi.
“We are legion. But you, Master Zaytsev, are only one…”
Nineteen-year-old council member, Tim Zaytsev, is tasked with removing glitches from the council’s newest living airship, the CLS Manticore. Like its predecessor, the Manticore is formed from living shapeshifters. Their minds were wiped and their memories erased, but the occasional “ghost” of their personalities remain.
Removing the “ghosts” should be simple after dealing with the first vessel. But the task descends into madness when the Manticore traps Tim within its fleshy walls and attempts to force him to join the shapeshifters who made the merge.
Determined to undermine the ship’s dangerous, telepathic games and convince the other council members that the ship is manipulating them, Tim must summon a courage he’s never had, the courage to stay and fight. But doing so would force him to confront the vessel alone—a path that can only end in his destruction.
The Stone and String Series
Stone and String is the first short story in a planned series of short stories. Young Adult Fantasy.
A spell to infuriate the goddess of the dead…
In the world of “The Wishing Blade,” everyone is born with two strings of magic. One strand is life, and the other is death. Very few can manipulate them.
Among the Cantingen Islanders, children are tested for this ability during their first rites of magic, a ceremony which determines what magic they have and their future as a mage. But when Edyli’s little sister, Akymi, dies in an accident before those rites can occur, Edyli does the unthinkable. She uses magic to return Akymi to the living. As a result, she finds herself in a land of weblike strings… the afterlife.
Edyli refuses to give up seeing her sister’s first rites. With the help of a mysterious immortal and sheer determination, she has every intention of seeing her sister once more, even if it means incurring the wrath of Madia, the goddess of the dead.
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Wind and Words is the second story (novella) in a planned series of short stories and novellas. Young Adult Fantasy.
Life magic is not meant to be alone.
Everyone is born with two strings of magic. One strand is life, and the other is death.
When Edyli escaped the land of the dead after saving her sister, the goddess of death removed Edyli’s death magic. Without that string, Edyli is unbalanced, a “monster” who cannot sleep, cannot die, and without care, will slowly go mad.
Banished from her home for refusing to make amends with the goddess, Edyli is surprised to discover a child without life magic deep in the jungle—a child her remaining magic is drawn to, because those who are unbalanced are inexplicably drawn together.
Terrified of what might happen if the two of them touch, Edyli seeks answers about the mysterious child. If she can recover the child’s life magic, she might earn back the goddess’s favor and become whole again.
But one mistake, and Edyli could live forever in insanity.
The Wishing Blade Series
Magic’s Stealing is the first novella in the series. Middle Grade/Young Adult Fantasy.
A secret plot is unveiled…
For centuries, ribbons of magic provided the kingdom of Cirena with light, healing, and protection. But with a coup against the gods on the brink of unfolding, a dark power steals the magic from the land and cripples the kingdom in a single afternoon.
Not everyone is caught unaware.
A local goddess blesses two young mages with a gift—they keep their magic, and in return, they must help the gods defend the kingdom.
One of these mages, Toranih, is a young noblewoman who would rather have a sword in her hand than use her powers to heal or throw fireballs. And she would much rather stay out of the plans of immortals. But with former mages dying from magic withdrawal, and the looming threat of an army who can twist others into shadows like them, Toranih must embrace the responsibilities of a mage or watch her home perish.
The Shadow War is the second novel in the series. Middle Grade/Young Adult Fantasy.
Though a shadow is as good as a ghost, with no free will to speak of, they may still be saved…
The kingdom of Cirena is under attack from an army of shadows—beings who can only be hurt by magic or fire. Magic has been stolen, and as the shadows spread, infecting all they touch, the last two ribbon mages race to the nearest port city to warn them of the impending invasion.
One of those mages, Toranih, is among the few who can see the Trickster-cursed army, and she’s determined to get magic back—no matter how much she distrusts it. When she is captured by shadows and a dark secret is revealed about her future, her best friend, Daernan, is left to defend the city. But his only methods of stopping the shadows are by fire and the devastating magic of the shodo’charl.
With the knowledge that the shadows are innocent townsfolk forced to do a warlord’s bidding, Daernan must choose between saving the shadows or saving those who have not yet turned.
1000 Words is a collection of ten short stories, each approximately one thousand words in length. They range from science fiction and fantasy, to adventure and horror. Each short story is accompanied by its own book cover. This was a capstone project meant to merge photographic illustration with creative writing.
“1000 Words” (only available in the complete anthology)
*A space traveler wakes up with no memory of yesterday’s events, and sits down to read the ebook she finds on her bedstand.
*When a young girl gets transported to the future, she becomes single-handly responsible for a plague that could wipe out Earth’s population.
*Two teens chose to save a library instead of escape into bunkers when their city was attacked. Now they try to stay together and find the device necessary to read the files they saved.
*A young witch ventures outside of her town for the first time in hopes of transferring her brother’s illness to a willing creature.
*A young hunter defends herself against an intelligent cougar stalking her family’s village.
*A father’s actions run full-circle when he chooses to cut educational funding.
*A man’s choices lead him to four red lights in the middle of nowhere, where he is haunted by a ghost of his past.
*The mystical Dreamkeeper is intrigued by the appearance of a wandering child in her dream world.
*A magician’s reenactments of his past come to a halt when his sister shows up onstage.
*A steampunk investigator discovers a missing scientist has created a strange clockwork angel.
You can find each of the short stories available for free individually on Smashwords or as an anthology on Amazon.
“Ashes” is the prequel to “Socks,” one of the short stories from 1000 Words.
7,500 words. When rebels attack the city, two teens race to save the last existing library before it is destroyed.