Age of Ultron and a pile of Comics


The first weekend of May is something of a festival for those of us living the geek lifestyle. For more than a decade now, there's been a Marvel movie opening on Friday and Free Comic Book Day on Saturday every year.

This time, the movie was a mixed bag. Avengers: Age of Ultron was equal parts awesome and disappointing, depending on whether you're focusing on the crazy fights or the failed attempts at developing character arcs. I tried focusing on both and wound up dizzy. You can read my full review over at The Middle Room. I've also got a post up looking at some of the structural problems and opportunities connected to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Free Comic Book Day, on the other hand, was just awesome. We stopped by Dreamstrands and Comics Dungeon in Seattle, as well as Subspace Comics in Lynnwood. All three went all out with sales, a generous offering of free issues, and creator signings. This definitely felt like the largest FCBD since we moved to Seattle.

I picked up a bunch of T-shirts, a toy bat-copter, and some trades, along with the aforementioned free issues. Not a bad start to summer, all things considered.

Announcement: "A Count of Five" Available June 18th

Everyone paying attention? I've got news.

My new novel, A Count of Five, will be available on June 18th. The pre-order page for the Kindle version is already up on Amazon. The paperback edition should be available by that time as well (if you want both, wait for the paperback: I'll set it up so it comes with the e-book version, so you'll save a few bucks).

A Count of Five is the first novel in a series I’m working on called The Citadel of the Last Gathering. This is epic fantasy with elements of science fiction and other genres mixed in. It could be considered YA, though I’m steering clear of the usual tropes and cliches that permeate that genre. If you like fantasy but hate YA, you’ll still want to give this a chance.

The blurb from the back of the book appears below. I hope you'll consider checking it out!

One for the gods of our people
Two for the plants they seeded into the earth
Three for the animals they gave gifts of magic
Four for the men who serve the gods
Five for the spirit that sustains everything
Five numbers. Five gods. Five spells for men and five for women. Five ages before the end.

Since history began, this knowledge has defined the world for Alaji’s people, who live along the shores of five holy lakes. But now an army has ridden out of the north led by a powerful and cunning warlord. This, Alaji is told, could mark the end of the last age. The end of men and of time itself. 
Alaji has more to fear than invaders. She has learned the five spells of women. But she knows one more: a spell beyond those given to mortals. A spell that that gives her power over time. 
To learn a spell of the gods is to challenge them. If discovered, the penalty is death. But harnessing such power may allow Alaji to save her family, or may start her on a journey ranging farther than they could have ever imagined.


*     *     *

I'm excited about this one, folks. The novel is a lot of fun, and I think you'll like where the series is heading.

Fiction: Upgrade

Upgrade

The shop smelled like an old toaster that had been deep-fried in motor oil. Wes Rothold could hardly maneuver the tight packed isles of used circuit boards, gyros, mechanical arms, and fishbowls filled with artificial eyes. Wes wasn’t much, yet: scrawny, pale. Had a tattoo under his left eye, kind of a maroon star. His left hand was a gorgeous Meletech Robotic Mesh that he had owned since he was fourteen. He had put his hand into the kitchen disposal five years earlier: only way to get his parents to buy him a cybernetic one.

Wes was still ninety-percent meat, but it had come time to change that. He had a job now, his own place, his own money. It was time to upgrade.

Fiction: The Goblin Prince

The Goblin Prince
(From the short story collection Tending the Fire)

There came a day when there were no more rats in Lanheim's cobbled streets. Such a thing did not occur all at once, but slowly over months, as the pests dwindled and disappeared like snow beneath spring rain. It was the apothecary, naturally, who first noticed something amiss, as it was his business that faltered and his fortunes that shriveled. Before long, the missing rodents were the subject of a hundred conversations, whispering through windows and echoing through alleyways. There was much rejoicing in Lanheim, as few things were so despised as the rats. Since the founding of the city, they had been plagued by the rodents, which crept up from the sewers to steal scraps from above and spread disease and filth like weeds in a garden.

Fiction: The Worst Assassin in Kalbrin

The Worst Assassin in Kalbrin
(From the short story collection Tending the Fire)

In the city of Kalbrin, capital of Helkirith, if you wanted a man killed quickly, effectively, and without fail, you would go to the order of magi, whose arcane powers could handle any job with ruthless efficiency. If, on the other hand, you wanted a man killed after seeing his family slain, one by one, the dark cults of Locintri could accomplish the job – if you were willing to pay their price. If you hated a man so much you wanted his death to take days, even weeks of agonizing torment, the dwarven killer, Yermir, could make any nightmare pale in comparison. Placing enough coins in the palm of Serig Jaraldil, the captain of the guard, could purchase the death of almost anyone in town, as well as ensure that no legal recourse was brought against you.

There had never been a shortage of methods to kill a man in Kalbrin. Yet there was only one assassin you could hire if you wanted that man to survive.

First

This is a new site. Sort of.

The url isn't new: I've had a webpage up here for years. Most of the content currently featured came from there as well. But the design and layout outstayed their welcome. Rather than try to repair it, I tore it down and replaced it with this site.

So, how about an introduction? I'm Erin Snyder, and I write fantasy and science fiction stories and novels. Want a longer bio? Click on the About Me section.

Have a look around and feel free to ask questions.