#Art of Fantasy 28: Xiaodi Jin

兽人Xiaodi Jin is a freelance concept artist from China. His work is dark and fantastic and thus an appropriate addition to the #Art of Fantasy series. I tried to find more information about the artist but to no avail. It’s a pity because Xiaodi’s paintings are phenomenal. His mood and tone remind me of Justin Sweet’s work which exudes a similar grimness and gloom.

Below are a few choice pieces. If you click on an image it will take you to the artist’s gallery.






大ddAnd that’s that. Before I conclude today’s post, I wish to announce that from next week onwards I’ll be doing an #Art of Sci-Fi over at Kōsa Press’s blog. It will run concurrently with #Art of Fantasy here. I’m pretty excited about doing this. There is some awesome sci-fi art out there and I’ve been itching to share it with you, and now I get to have that chance.

I hope to see you there. And don’t worry, I’ll make sure to link you when the time comes.



An Interview with “These Broken Worlds” Author Pavarti K. Tyler

41zi5XvPjyL._SX311_BO1,204,203,200_One of my fellow collaborators on These Broken Worlds is Pavarti K. Tyler. She is a maverick, a rebel’s rebel, and a teller of uncommon tales.  She is a talented author and I’m proud to call her my friend.

The Kōsa Press team sat down with Pavarti for an interview where she discussed why writing science fiction scared her, the secret ingredient for successful creative collaborations, what it’s like to edit a story with qualities you’ve never attempted before, and the benefits of independent publishers. You will also discover that Pavarti is far from ordinary and has a unique voice and approach to telling her stories.

Here is an excerpt from the interview:

KPT: In February 2015, you published a blog post “Write What Scares You” in which you speak about some of your science fiction endeavors. You mention having high standards for this genre, but what else scares you about it? 

PKT: For one, it’s a genre that when it’s done wrong is very hard to salvage. You know, in other genres you can just gloss over some stuff if you need to or if you get something wrong the audiences are willing to go with it. Sci-fi, not so much. Readers are very smart and very particular. Another part that is intimidating is the SIZE of sci-fi. At least the kind of sci-fi I love. These worlds are so huge and so interconnected. How do you tell a massive story without it all being just “and then, and then.” When you’re building a whole new world like this, with science and culture and religion and ecology, it’s sometimes really hard to see the forest for the trees.

You can read the rest of the interview here.



#Art of Fantasy 27: Svetlin Velinov

885357_10151506764439870_994411138_oToday’s artist hails from Bulgaria. Svetlin Velinov is a freelance illustrator and concept artist who has done work for companies such as Wizards of the Coast, Phoenix Age and Applibot.

His style, in my opinion, captures the essence of fantasy and I especially like the gritty lines and dark colors. He is exceptionally strong on creature design and, like some of the other artists I’ve featured on this blog,  the detail in his work is truly satisfying to behold.

Below are a few choice pieces for you to enjoy. If you click on an image it will take you to the gallery of origin.









facination_by_velinov-d8fm53tI am happy to say this series is truly global in its attempt to showcase talent from around the world, albeit unintentionally so. My methodology consists of one criterion only and that is, the art should blow me away. Nothing else matters.

There is a chance I might run a similar series on Kōsa Press’s blog concurrently with this one. It’ll be called “Art of Science Fiction” and will focus on spaceships and aliens and planets and all things Sci-Fi. I should have an answer soon, and when I do, fear not, I will let you know.



From Dark Fantasy to Science Fiction: My Kōsa Press Interview

Mini-Anthology-Final-1I did an interview over at Kōsa Press. The questions were interesting and non-standard and I had fun answering them. I think you might enjoy reading it.

Here is an excerpt:

KPT: One main component of the universe portrayed in These Broken Worlds and Interspecies is not a lot of the Earth is habitable anymore. Many of the aliens and humans live in Australia and New Zealand. How did being from this part of the world help with constructing your stories?

WD: It was really nice to have the stories take place here. I live in New Zealand so of course I made sure that a big part of my story took place here. Knowing your own country–its topography, cities and buildings, and so on–helps with setting and makes visualization much easier. You also discover a few new things you didn’t know. For instance, you’d think that with all the earthquakes here, underground tunnels wouldn’t even be considered practical, and yet, during the second World War a network of tunnels were dug beneath Auckland to serve as air raid shelters. They’ve since been sealed off, but the fact that they exist is amazing. And they were well made, too. So of course I had to use them in “The Last Devil.”

If you want to read the rest of the interview, click here. I hope you do, of course. I discuss the importance of “wonder” in storytelling, my military experience, flash fiction writing, and my experience writing in multiple genres. I also mention two fantasy projects.




#SciFi: The God Machine (A Free Short Story From The Collective)

img_1784Yesterday I shared with you the release of These Broken Worlds. Today I’m sharing The Collective’s first release, a short story titled The God-Machine. I am not a contributor in this instance, but I will be in coming releases. The God-Machine introduces readers to a universe where slave scribes produce data for a supernatural entity to create life and record history.

From the Amazon description:

Areva dreams of the day when he will become a Scribe and contribute to The Collective – the tethered souls, connected to the God-Machine. The Scribes write the Universe into Existence, and it’s Areva’s destiny to join them. But as his time draws near, he hesitates. Perhaps the God-Machine serves a darker purpose.

Dare I mention that it’s free right now. Yes, it would seem this week I am the bearer of much good news. So, click on over to Amazon and get your free copy. If you want to leave a review as thanks, we won’t mind at all, of course. And, if you want to be notified of further new releases from The Collective, maybe you should subscribe to our newsletter. You can’t really lose here and you’re gaining so much more.



These Broken Worlds is Out Now!

Today is the official release of These Broken Worlds and I wrote a special post celebrating the occasion over at Kōsa Press’s blog.

It is our first publication, making today a significant event in our label’s short history.

It also introduces the drilodyte universe and I’m dying to share this with you. So please come join us.

Besides, we just might have a surprise there waiting for you.

See you there!


#Art of Fantasy 26: Amanda Sartor

the-laidly-worm-amsartorA.M.Sartor is a freelance illustrator from Seattle, WA. Although traditionally trained as a children’s book illustrator, she has several game credits on her resumé. According to Sartor, her style is ‘greatly influenced by works from the Golden Age of Illustration, Ukiyo-e, and contemporary pop surrealism.’ She uses a mix of traditional and digital media and have a decade’s worth of experience in the entertainment and publishing industry.

I like her style because it’s just different. Soft with muted colors in a style that reminds me of earlier illustrators from the previous century.

Below are a few samples. If you click on any image it will take to the artist’s site.










Sartor also illustrates book covers and I have to say, I wouldn’t mind commissioning her for a project in the near future. In fact, I’m considering changing the cover for Bullies and Soggy Soup Bones and I’m thinking her style wouldn’t be a bad fit for the story. If you want to know more about Sartor and her art, you can visit her website or follow her on Twitter here.

Now for something completely different. If I were you, I’d watch this blog for an announcement in a day or so.