Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Neu Deutsch-Thriller Kindle-Bücher


Neu für Deutsch Kindle


Entzweiung: Thriller ist zum Verkauf für 0,99 Euro.
http://www.amazon.de/Entzweiung-Thriller-ebook/dp/B00AQZIX9E


Die Rote Kirche war ein US-Kindle besten Verkäufer und ein Stoker Award Finalist. Auch 0,99 Euro für eine begrenzte Zeit.
http://www.amazon.de/Die-rote-Kirche-ebook/dp/B00ASBNQU2


Die Tunnel der Seele ist eine Geistergeschichte, die auch 0,99. Danke und ich hoffe, Sie geben ihnen einen Versuch!
http://www.amazon.de/Die-Tunnel-der-Seele-ebook/dp/B00ASBO7QY
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New German books for Kindle and Kindle Fire in Amazon.de.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Monday, December 17, 2012

After, post-apocalyptic thriller for Kindle, plus free Kindle books

After: The Shock is now out in most ebook markets--look for it on sale for 99 cents from Dec. 19 to Dec. 21 (more or less.) Otherwise, it will be $3.99. (This post-apocalyptic thriller won't be free through any of the outlets, although I may make it eligible for the Prime loans on Amazon--and remove it from the other markets--depending on how holiday sales go. So grab it fast!)









If you want to see some of my research links, visit the book's page on my website

I also have a number of holiday specials rolling through, including some free Kindle books, with more to be announced. I will also be giving away three $25 Amazon gift cards to my newsletter subscribers, so if you haven't signed up, send an email to the Yahoogroup. Your address will never be sold, shared, or abused, and you will be the first to get big news, free books, and opportunities to win Kindle Fires and other prizes. Thanks for your support!
HOLIDAY SALES!
99-CENT SPECIALS

Dec. 17-20
The Skull Ring

Dec. 19-21
Crime Beat
http://www.amazon.com/Crime-Beat-ebook/dp/B004IK8FRI



Dec. 18-21
Too Many Witches (children’s book)
 


BIG BOX SET BLOWOUT! DEC. 22 through Dec. 26
Sixteen box sets from bestselling authors!
http://smarturl.it/boxsets


FREE BOOKS
Dec. 18-20
Fangs In Vain

Dec. 21-22
Duncan the Punkin (children’s book)

Dec. 24-25
Drummer Boy

Dec. 26-27
Kiss Me or Die

Dec. 28-29
October Girls
  

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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Author Harry Shannon

Author Harry Shannon is a talented guy and I was lucky enough to win a copy of his first collection BAD SEED way back when we both had darker hair. Since then, he's piled up the properties. A musician, counselor, filmmaker, author, family man--and guy.
 
What is the working title of your next book?The Hungry 3: At the End of the World, co-written with Steven W. Booth. The novel should be out in February, 2013. It concerns the further adventures of Sheriff Penny Miller of Flat Rock, Nevada, who is still braving the Zombie Apocalypse.

Where did the idea come from?
The first book The Hungry began as a short zombie story written for a charity anthology. Steven and I had so much fun doing it we continued on and finished the novel version on a lark. It sold very well, so The Hungry 2: The Wrath of God followed in August. We're still not sure if this finishes a trilogy or if we'll feel compelled to do more.

What genre best defines your book?
Zombies, baby! And tongue in cheek horror, I guess.

What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie? 
The actress featured on all three covers of The Hungry books is the lovely Ms. Gillian Shure, who co-starred in my micro-budged ode to 80's horror Dead and Gone back in 2007. She has become so connected in my brain with redheaded Sheriff Penny Miller it has become difficult to imagine anyone else playing the part. Our fans tell us Norman Reedus, who plays Daryl on The Walking Dead, has simply got to play her biker friend Scratch.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Sheriff Penny Miller and her friends hide out at a hunting lodge in the snowy mountains of Colorado, hoping to escape the zombie plague. It is not a Merry Christmas.
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
All three of The Hungry novels are published by Genius Books, which is owned by my co-author Steven.

How long did it take you to write the first draft?
We do an outline first, emailing back and forth, working out just the key beats of the story in rough chapter form. Once that is set, Steven generally does the rough, I rewrite that and send it back. Once we get going the actual first draft (one pass for each of us) generally takes us about three months.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
I suppose we'd be considered a mix of drama and comedy. We have loads of redneck humor, a touch of Zombieland or Shawn of the Dead, but the satire is mixed with genuinely creepy scenes similar in tone to the zombie work of Jonathan Maberry and Joe McKinney. Joe and Jonathan are friends of ours, and fans of Sheriff Penny Miller. In fact, Joe wrote the introduction to the first book.

Who or what inspired you to write this book?
I've always loved zombie lore, particularly the George Romero school and the 1970's classic Night of the Living Dead. I'm from Nevada, and often set stories and novels in that state. When we were writing the charity story, it just tickled me to combine those two and see how a redneck Sheriff in a small town might react to facing a horde of the undead. We began in the jail, in a salute to Rio Bravo, and it took off from there and became a series.

What else about the book might pique the reader's interest?
You can read The Hungry: At the End of the World by itself come February, or buy and read the first two now and start from the beginning. Either way, be sure to make a very, very big bowl of popcorn, dim the lights and be prepared for a mix of laughs on scares. These novels have been a ton of fun to write, and we think anyone who loves shambling monsters is bound to enjoy reading them.
~

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Spooky fun children's books


Artist and writer Lee Davis did this cartoon version of a silly photograph of us. He illustrated my children's books If I Were Your Monster, Ida Claire, and Too Many Witches, and also has his own brilliantly bizarre milieu at his website.

We'll also be at Mysticon together in Roanoke, Va, early February. Check him out, and stay kooky!

Friday, November 2, 2012

#HomeForHalloween winners and Mystery Dance box set on sale

Congratulations to Carole Smith and Mel Hill, winners of their choice of a Kindle Fire, Nook HD 8G, or Kobo Glo in the #HomeForHalloween giveaway. @MariAdkins won the final $20 gift card. Individual winners of signed books will be announced after the ereaders are claimed (they serve as alternate winners in case the two winners don't show up).

In the meantime, the STEAL DEAL OF THE WEEK is the Mystery Dance box set.

Contains Disintegration, Crime Beat, and The Skull Ring. Box set Mystery Dance is $1.99 Nov. 7 through Nov. 9. Save five dollars off the regular price or $7 off if purchased separately.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Free Kindle book: Speed Dating with the Dead

Happy Halloween to you and stay safe!

Good luck to all who entered the #HomeForHalloween contest. Winners will be announced here Friday after selection by the Watauga County Library using random.org--all winners will be verified to ensure they are real people who fairly followed the rules.

Thanks for your support of The Home, which has had a nice month , hitting the Top 100 for both Kindle and Nook. Don't forget Speed Dating with the Dead is free for Kindle and Kindle UK for Halloween.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Last week for #HomeForHalloween Kindle giveaway!


Look for American Horror on sale for 99 cents through Nov. 3.


Win ereaders, signed books. and more! Enter via the Rafflecopter below to enter.

Amazon 
Amazon UK
Barnes & Noble 
Kobo

Experiments at a group home for troubled children lead to paranormal activity--and the ghosts are former residents of the home's past as an insane asylum. In development as a feature film.
 

Congratulations to @GefFox and @Norah_Wilson on Twitter, joining @RinnReads as $20 gift card winners! One more to give away.

If you like audiobooks, The Home is one of the featured Spooky Listens at ACX through Nov. 5..

To celebrate the launch of The Homeyou can win your choice of a Kindle Fire, a Nook HD 8G, or a Kobo Glo (two separate winners total). Other prizes include MP3-CD audiobooks of Liquid Fear and Chronic Fear, and signed copies of Chronic Fear, Monsters Inc., Drummer Boy, If I Were Your Monster, and Dirt. I'll also be randomly selecting Twitter RTs for a $20 gift card each week that use the #HomeForHalloween hashtag. If The Home hits the Top 20 on any of the ebook outlets during October, I'll give away an extra bonus device of the winner's choice. Congratulations to @RinnReads on Twitter for winning the first $20 gift card.

You can also enter by emailing bigkindleboogie@yahoo.com. Thanks and good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway






Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Buy The Home, get a free Novella! #HomeForHalloween

Buy Scott Nicholson’s bestselling paranormal thriller The Home for $3.99 and get a free advance copy of the vampire novella Fangs in Vain, the first book in the new Sabrina Vickers series. To collect the bonus book, email freenicholsonbook@yahoo.com to receive a coupon from Smashwords.com to download the book in any format. Put “Fangs in Vain” in the subject line and list the day and place you purchased The Home in the message. Offer ends Wednesday, Oct.24.


Win ereaders, signed books. and more! Enter below or you can drop by the book blogs listed to the right and read exclusive excerpts and enter. (Any book blogger who wants to host for a day, email AuthorScottNicholson AT gmail)

Amazon 
Amazon UK
Barnes & Noble 
Kobo

Experiments at a group home for troubled children lead to paranormal activity--and the ghosts are former residents of the home's past as an insane asylum. In development as a feature film.
 

Congratulations to @Norah_Wilson on Twitter, joining @RinnReads as $20 gift card winners! Two more to give away.

If you like audiobooks, Creative Spirit was just released on Audible, Amazon, and iTunes. Speed Dating with the Dead came out a few weeks ago. My featured Kindle book right now is Ashes, at Amazon for 99 cents.

To celebrate the launch of The Homeyou can win your choice of a Kindle Fire, a Nook HD 8G, or a Kobo Glo (two separate winners total). Other prizes include MP3-CD audiobooks of Liquid Fear and Chronic Fear, and signed copies of Chronic Fear, Monsters Inc., Drummer Boy, If I Were Your Monster, and Dirt. I'll also be randomly selecting Twitter RTs for a $20 gift card each week that use the #HomeForHalloween hashtag. If The Home hits the Top 20 on any of the ebook outlets during October, I'll give away an extra bonus device of the winner's choice. Congratulations to @RinnReads on Twitter for winning the first $20 gift card.

If you don't use social media, you can enter by emailing bigkindleboogie@yahoo.com. Thanks and good luck!


a Rafflecopter giveaway






Saturday, October 13, 2012

#HomeForHalloween eReader giveaway

Thanks for helping THE HOME hit the Top 100 on Kindle and Nook. That triggered the bonus ereader giveaway, so now there are TWO free ereaders of your choice! Enter below or you can drop by the book blogs listed to the right and read exclusive excerpts and enter. (Any book blogger who wants to host for a day, email AuthorScottNicholson AT gmail)

Amazon 
Amazon UK
Barnes & Noble 
Kobo

Experiments at a group home for troubled children lead to paranormal activity--and the ghosts are former residents of the home's past as an insane asylum. In development as a feature film.


Congratulations to @Norah_Wilson on Twitter, joining @RinnReads as $20 gift card winners! Two more to give away.

If you like audiobooks, Creative Spirit was just released on Audible, Amazon, and iTunes. Speed Dating with the Dead came out a few weeks ago. My featured Kindle book right now is Ashes, at Amazon for 99 cents.

To celebrate the launch of The Homeyou can win your choice of a Kindle Fire, a Nook HD 8G, or a Kobo Glo (two separate winners total). Other prizes include MP3-CD audiobooks of Liquid Fear and Chronic Fear, and signed copies of Chronic Fear, Monsters Inc., Drummer Boy, If I Were Your Monster, and Dirt. I'll also be randomly selecting Twitter RTs for a $20 gift card each week that use the #HomeForHalloween hashtag. If The Home hits the Top 20 on any of the ebook outlets during October, I'll give away an extra bonus device of the winner's choice. Congratulations to @RinnReads on Twitter for winning the first $20 gift card.

If you don't use social media, you can enter by emailing bigkindleboogie@yahoo.com. Thanks and good luck!




Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Kindle Fire giveaway, Nook giveaway, Kobo giveaway

Thanks for helping THE HOME hit the Top 100 on Kindle and Nook. That triggered the bonus ereader giveaway, so now there are TWO free ereaders of your choice! Enter below or you can drop by the book blogs listed to the right and read exclusive excerpts and enter. (Any blogger who wants to host for a day, email AuthorScottNicholson AT gmail)
Amazon 
Amazon UK
Barnes & Noble 
Kobo

Experiments at a group home for troubled children lead to paranormal activity--and the ghosts are former residents of the home's past as an insane asylum. In development as a feature film.


To celebrate the launch of The Homeyou can win your choice of a Kindle Fire, a Nook HD 8G, or a Kobo Glo (two separate winners total). Other prizes include MP3-CD audiobooks of Liquid Fear and Chronic Fear, and signed copies of Chronic Fear, Monsters Inc., Drummer Boy, If I Were Your Monster, and Dirt. I'll also be randomly selecting Twitter RTs for a $20 gift card each week that use the #HomeForHalloween hashtag. If The Home hits the Top 20 on any of the ebook outlets during October, I'll give away an extra bonus device of the winner's choice. Congratulations to @RinnReads on Twitter for winning the first $20 gift card.

If you don't use social media, you can enter by emailing bigkindleboogie@yahoo.com. Thanks and good luck!



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Monday, October 8, 2012

#HomeForHalloween: Win a Kindle Fire, Nook, or Kobo Glo

Thanks for helping THE HOME hit the Top 100 on Kindle and Nook. That triggered the bonus ereader giveaway, so now there are TWO! Enter below or you can drop by the book blogs listed to the right and read exclusive excerpts and enter. Also writer J. Thorn and Dodge Winston were kind enough to host the rafflecopter today. (Any blogger who wants to host for a day, let me know!)
Amazon 
Amazon UK
Barnes & Noble 
Kobo

Experiments at a group home for troubled children lead to paranormal activity--and the ghosts are former residents of the home's past as an insane asylum. In development as a feature film.

Today's daily special: Story collection box set MAD STACKS free at Amazon US and Amazon UK


To celebrate the launch of The Homeyou can win your choice of a Kindle Fire, a Nook HD 8G, or a Kobo Glo (two separate winners total). Other prizes include MP3-CD audiobooks of Liquid Fear and Chronic Fear, and signed copies of Chronic Fear, Monsters Inc., Drummer Boy, If I Were Your Monster, and Dirt. I'll also be randomly selecting Twitter RTs for a $20 gift card each week that use the #HomeForHalloween hashtag. If The Home hits the Top 20 on any of the ebook outlets during October, I'll give away an extra bonus device of the winner's choice.

If you don't use social media, you can enter by emailing bigkindleboogie@yahoo.com. Thanks and good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Saturday, October 6, 2012

The Home, #1 Kindle horror bestseller: Win a Kindle Fire, Nook, or Kobo Glo

Thanks for making The Home a Top 100 bestseller on Kindle and Nook and kicking in that BONUS eREADER giveaway! The Top 20 for the third bonus eReader is harder. I can't do that alone, but you guys can make it happen! Thanks for your support. Because of you, the interest in the movie script by North of Seven Productions is heating up, too! I briefly bumped my buddy Blake Crouch off the #1 horror spot but he's rock solid. We're not finished yet, though...

You can drop by the book blogs listed to the right and read exclusive excerpts, and there are easy contest entries from the blogs, too. The price will be going to $2.99 (and then $3.99 later on) but different markets roll it in at different times, so better grab it fast!
Amazon 
Amazon UK
Barnes & Noble 
Kobo

Experiments at a group home for troubled children lead to paranormal activity--and the ghosts are former residents of the home's past as an insane asylum. In development as a feature film.

To celebrate the launch of The Homeyou can win your choice of a Kindle Fire, a Nook HD 8G, or a Kobo Glo (two separate winners total). Other prizes include MP3-CD audiobooks of Liquid Fear and Chronic Fear, and signed copies of Chronic Fear, Monsters Inc., Drummer Boy, If I Were Your Monster, and Dirt. I'll also be randomly selecting Twitter RTs for a $20 gift card each Sunday that use the #HomeForHalloween hashtag. If The Home hits the Top 20 on any of the ebook outlets during October, I'll give away a THIRD device of the winner's choice.

If you don't use social media, you can enter by emailing bigkindleboogie@yahoo.com. Thanks and good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

P.S. Congratulations to Hugh Howey for hitting #1 in the overall Kindle store with Wool!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Home for Halloween Kindle, Nook, Kobo giveaway

Thanks for helping THE HOME hit the Top 100 on Kindle and Nook. That triggered the bonus ereader giveaway, so now there are TWO! Enter below or you can drop by the book blogs listed to the right and read exclusive excerpts and enter. Also writer J. Thorn and Dodge Winston were kind enough to host the rafflecopter today. (Any blogger who wants to host for a day, let me know!)
Amazon 
Amazon UK
Barnes & Noble 
Kobo

Experiments at a group home for troubled children lead to paranormal activity--and the ghosts are former residents of the home's past as an insane asylum. In development as a feature film.

Today's daily special: Story collection box set MAD STACKS free at Amazon US and Amazon UK

To celebrate the launch of The Homeyou can win your choice of a Kindle Fire, a Nook HD 8G, or a Kobo Glo (two separate winners total). Other prizes include MP3-CD audiobooks of Liquid Fear and Chronic Fear, and signed copies of Chronic Fear, Monsters Inc., Drummer Boy, If I Were Your Monster, and Dirt. I'll also be randomly selecting Twitter RTs for a $20 gift card each week that use the #HomeForHalloween hashtag. If The Home hits the Top 20 on any of the ebook outlets during October, I'll give away an extra bonus device of the winner's choice.

If you don't use social media, you can enter by emailing bigkindleboogie@yahoo.com. Thanks and good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Sunday, September 30, 2012

The Home for Halloween giveaway

 It's alive. THE HOME is now available in all ebook outlets at a temporary sale price of 99 cents.
Amazon 
Amazon UK
Barnes & Noble 
Kobo

Experiments at a group home for troubled children lead to paranormal activity--and the ghosts are former residents of the home's past as an insane asylum. In development as a feature film.

To celebrate the launch of The Home, you can win your choice of a Kindle Fire, a Nook HD 8G, or a Kobo Glo. Other prizes include MP3-CD audiobooks of Liquid Fear and Chronic Fear, and signed copies of Chronic Fear, Monsters Inc., Drummer Boy, If I Were Your Monster, and Dirt. I'll also be randomly selecting Twitter RTs for a $20 gift card each week that use the #HomeForHalloween hashtag. If The Home hits the Top 100 on any of the ebook outlets during October, I'll give away a bonus device of the winner's choice.

If you don't use social media, you can enter by emailing bigkindleboogie@yahoo.com. Also look for the contest on some awesome book blogs this month, listed to the right. Contest ends Oct. 31 at midnight EST. Thanks and good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Sunday, September 16, 2012

You can't go home again, but you can call your book "The Home"

After much deliberation and debate (mostly consisting of reading tea leaves and sacrificing a goat to the oracle of smart marketing), I've decided to release THE HOME under the title of ...tah dah, drumroll...THE HOME!

While that may seem like a no-brainer, there are several good reasons to go with my preferred title of "Troubled" (which is the title I used for the non-US ebook release, since I held all rights except US/Canada.) Now that all rights are reverting to me, I can call the shots. I didn't like the publisher's title because I felt it was rather uninspired, although many people say The Home sounds creepy and mysterious.

And of course, it's kind of a horror handle to put "The" in front of everything. The Fog, The Ward, The Orphanage, The House, The Asylum, The Mall, The Gas Station, etc. (If you read October Girls, you can see me having a bit of fun with this, with movies titled things like "The Bloodening.") Tip of the cap to Bentley Little, whose market my original publisher was obviously chasing.

The main reason to stick with The Home is to support the movie script being shopped by North of Seven Productions. So The Home it shall be until a better reason comes along. Already available for Nook, KoboSmashwords and Amazon UK, the U.S. Kindle release will be at the end of September.

Since you're special and rare, you get a free advance ebook copy if you like. You don;t even have to write a review, although I will follow up with an email with the link once the book is live, in case you feel so inspired. I don't expect to make this free anywhere else at any time, so it may be the best chance to grab it. To get your copy before the red carpet rolls out, bang an email to hauntedcomputer AT yahoo.com.

Oh yeah, about the book...controversial experiments at a group home for troubled children stir up paranormal activity...and the ghosts are former residents of the home from its days as an insane asylum.
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Tuesday, September 11, 2012

The Skull Ring limited editions for collectors

In this digital age, it is easy to adore instant gratification. That's why Twitter and Facebook exist. But there's also something to admire about the slow way, the persistent path of hard work with a goal in mind. Zach Powell of King's Way Press is someone to admire. Zach took over some publishing projects from the ill-fated Full Moon Press and carried them to the finish line. Among those projects are The Skull Ring, a creamy-looking limited edition hardcover of my suspense thriller.

With art by the esteemed Alan M. Clark, much like my writing career was before the cataclysmic changes of the digital era. But digital is fleeting. These hardcover editions will last unto the fourth generation and beyond.

This is the first of my novels to get the royal treatment, in three different editions, all extremely limited and sure to soar in value when I do something spectacular one day like show up at a national political convention and rant at an empty chair.






Available in the minty fresh noble, regal, or royal editions, $30 and up. Don't go broke! http://www.kings-way-press.com/


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Monday, September 3, 2012

Audio horror: Speed Dating with the Dead now on Audible, iTunes, Amazon

As part of my secret capitalist plan for world domination so I can revel in eventual taoist surrender, I'm diving into the world of audio books. I am a big fan of audio books in the car, especially for longer trips or commutes, and the technology is making it easier than ever to get the work into a recording device. Right now three of my books are out in audio: Liquid Fear, Chronic Fear, and The Red Church.

Working with the immensely talented Daniel Dorse via Amazon's ACX.com, we have just released a full-length production of Speed Dating with the Dead. Available for Amazon.com, Audible.com, and iTunes. You can also listen to a free sample here: http://www.audible.com/pd/ref=sr_1_1?asin=B0094JNIG6&qid=1346710151&sr=1-1 (Click "sample" beneath the book cover).

You can get Speed Dating for free if you open a new Audible.com account. If you open an account to get my book, or the book is one of the first three you purchase through Audible, I will send you a signed trade paperback of Speed Dating with the Dead. Just email me at hauntedcomputer at yahoo.com if you do that.

Look for more audiobooks coming soon. Currently in production are Kiss Me or Die and Creative Spirit.
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Monday, August 27, 2012

Help me pick the AFTER cover!

Right now I am hitting the stretch run on AFTER, my post-apocalyptic thriller. It's the point in the marathon where you have a stitch in the side, dehydration, and blurred hallucinations of giant bunnies hover in the periphery of your vision. But it's one aching foot after another..."after," after all.

But I need a cover. Stephanie of Mooney Designs has offered these two very cool images to choose from, so please chime in with your thoughts! Thanks!



Also still running some freebies:

Bad Blood (with H.T. Night)- Aug. 25-27

Ghost Files Set- Aug. 28-30

Dark Spells- Aug. 31- Sept. 2

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Friday, August 10, 2012

A month of Nicholson Rain

It's raining men, halleleauh, it's raining...

Er. Check that. It's raining free books! A month of free Nicholson and Rain Kindle books coming your way. Please grab, like, and share because it's been a long, dry summer!

Cracked the 50,000 word count on AFTER and now entering the stretch run, with Mooney Design working on a cover. Also publishing Presenze in Italian. If you want an advance reader copy of Troubled (formerly The Home), let me know! Current plans are to release in late September.


Bad Blood (with H.T. Night)- Aug. 25-27

Ghost Files Set- Aug. 28-30

Dark Spells- Aug. 31- Sept. 2

 

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Friday, July 27, 2012

Sample scene of new novel AFTER


Here's the opening of the new novel, AFTER, which should be out in the fall. I will be posting bits and pieces, cover art, etc., on the blog and will need help shaping the story and deciding if it will be a series, so check back from time to time and help me get this done!

Kindle freebies:
 July 26-27: The Red Church Amazon US Amazon UK
July 30-31: Speed Dating with the Dead
Amazon US Amazon UK
AFTER
By Scott Nicholson

CHAPTER ONE

There were three of them.
She’d stopped naming them a week ago. It had been an amusing distraction for a while—and the Good Lord only knew, she needed distractions—but then they’d all started blending together, the Black-Eyed Susans and the Raisinheads and the Meat Throats.
But now Rachel couldn’t resist, looking out the grimy drugstore window as she waited, crouched there in the litter of baby powder and cellophane.
Stumpy.
The one on the right, sitting on the sidewalk bench surrounded by a mountain of bulging plastic bags, was missing his left arm just below the elbow. The wound was swathed in a filthy towel, strapped in place with duct tape, stained dark brown at its blunt end.
Stumpy was waiting for a bus that would never come. Rachel couldn’t tell if he was a Zaphead. He might just be another of the schizophrenic homeless, the underclass that hadn’t even noticed the world had ended. Although gaunt, he didn’t appear particularly motivated to kill, obsessed instead with swatting away the flies that swirled around his stump.
He was fifty feet away, and she could outrun him easy. All she had to do was run as if her life depended on it. Which wouldn’t be a challenge.
The Beard, the guy staggering back and forth a hundred yards down the street, was almost certainly a Zaphead. His expression was hidden by the unkempt hair, but he was hunched and his fists were clenched, rage curling around whatever strange energy burned inside.
Okay, Beard, you’ve solved my little dilemma of whether I should head east or head west.
The mountains were her destination, and they lay to the west, but she wasn’t willing to risk The Beard.
The word “destination” sounded odd in her thoughts, because of the root “destiny.” Such abstractions were laughable now, but laughter was the only weapon against the fear that sapped the strength from her legs. And she needed her legs. Oh, yes, give her stumps for hands, but don’t mess with her legs.
In this scared new world, in this After, you had to run.

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