When a mysterious message prompts Delta to leave the crew unexpectedly, Max, Kort and K1RB pursue her to a mining colony on Quaris – a distant planet with a seedy reputation. To find Delta, the team must traverse a harsh, unforgiving environment; face certain death at the hands of murderous mercenaries; and uncover the powerful secrets hidden beneath the planet’s frozen crust . . .
After a very long hiatus, I’m pleased to announce that the Hulegaard Books podcast has returned. It most likely won’t become a weekly fixture as it once was, but my goal will remain the same: To bring you compelling conversations with some of the sharpest minds in the literary field.
My first guest is none other than the illustrious Tony Healey, the best-selling author of Hope’s Peak. In this episode, Tony and I discuss his journey to traditional publishing, and the aftermath of success. Check it out below!
Hello, everyone, and happy holidays! As I write this, the sun is shining bright without a cloud in the sky… and it’s 34° F outside. My fingers are already numb after typing only that little bit, but I will press on and deliver a long overdue update.
Icarus is Coming (No, for real this time)
After a lengthy delay, I’m thrilled to confirm that my new novel, Icarus, will release on January 27, 2017. I realize this may feel like déjà vu, but I assure you that the book is finally on schedule. In fact, I’ll prove it. Feast your eyes on the official product description:
It’s the winter of 1947 in Ashley Falls, West Virginia, and a teenage girl has gone missing. Local private detective Miller Brinkman takes the case, quickly uncovering a string of bizarre clues. A hidden diary, cryptic riddles, and buried secrets all pique Miller’s interest, but one key detail gives him pause: the girl’s parents haven’t reported her disappearance to the authorities.
As the case deepens, Miller’s investigation begins to poke holes in the idyllic picture of his beloved hometown. No longer certain whether anyone in his community can be trusted, Miller dives headfirst into a desperate search for the truth that extends far beyond the borders of Ashley Falls. He soon discovers that his missing persons case is not an isolated incident, but part of an otherworldly mystery—one that, if confronted, may threaten the very future of humanity.
Sound off in the comments below and let me know what you think!
What’s with the Delay?
Something that I’ve learned after working in the video game industry is that an extra few weeks can make all the difference in the world. I was ready to release Icarus over the summer, but there were a few details that weren’t resonating with readers in the way that I’d hoped.
My amazing editor put together a comprehensive list of points for me to potentially address, and I took another couple of months to do just that. I truly believe the extra time to bake has been worth it, and I’m very proud of the finished product. I’m so anxious to hear what you all think of the book!
Congratulations are in Order
Before I go, I’d like to take a moment and offer my sincerest congratulations to my good friend Tony Healey. Tony’s new novel, Hope’s Peak, released on Kindle last week, with the print version coming January 1, 2017. It’s no surprise to me that the book is already skyrocketing up Amazon’s Best-Sellers list. I was fortunate enough to read it earlier this year, and it has quickly become my favorite of Tony’s work.
To celebrate the release of Hope’s Peak, Tony is giving away 100 digital copies on Goodreads. I can’t recommend enough that you stop reading this right now and go enter!
My deepest thanks to everyone for your continued support. I wish you all the happiest of holidays, and look forward to hearing from you soon. Stay warm, and be kind to each other.
It’s here! It’s here! No, not the new phone books – Planet of Ice! Collaborating with the great mind of Tony Healey on this novel was definitely a highlight of my young literary career, and I hope that you’ll enjoy the story as much as I enjoyed writing it.
If you’re new to the Broken Stars series, be sure to check out book one: Age of Destiny. See how Max’s exhilarating adventure across the galaxy began, and how it sets up what’s to come in Planet of Ice.
I always love to hear what readers think, so if you’d be so kind as to leave a review, I’d appreciate it very much! Thank you for your continued support. There’s more to come in 2016!
With Planet of Ice’s release on the horizon, series creator Tony Healey is offering Age of Destiny for free on Kindle January 8 – 10. This is the perfect opportunity to pick up volume one in The Broken Stars series and get up to speed before the next installment releases later this month.
The Terran Union is at war. As the conflict with the Sjan reaches a breaking point, the fate of the stars themselves rests in the hands of Max and his ragtag band of friends; a group of misfits who might just prove to be the galaxy’s last, best hope . . .
Once you’ve completed Age of Destiny, continue Max’s adventure across the broken stars in Planet of Ice, coming soon to Kindle.
When a mysterious message prompts Delta to leave the crew unexpectedly, Max, Kort and K1RB pursue her to a mining colony on Quaris—a distant planet with a seedy reputation. To find Delta, the team must traverse a harsh, unforgiving environment; face certain death at the hands of murderous mercenaries; and uncover the powerful secrets hidden beneath the planet’s frozen crust . . .
While I spent the bulk of my free time last year writing and wasn’t able to consume as many new books as I would’ve liked, selecting my favorite read of 2015 proved to be a no-brainer: Past Dark by Tony Healey.
I’ve enjoyed Tony’s fine work for the last several years, and it’s been an absolute pleasure to watch him develop and mature as a storyteller. He continues to raise the bar every year, and in 2015 he produced some incredible work, including my pick for best read, Past Dark.
Compared to much of Tony Healey’s other work, Past Dark is a slow burn. It begins as a sentimental, yet bittersweet voyage back to the summer of 1995, a time Chris Peterson spent with his best friends, Ant & Kay. Chris recalls the innocence of youth: Building go-karts, going to carnivals, dealing with bullies, a first kiss… and then something far darker. Yes, once you’ve settled in, Healey flips the script, and you’ll love it!
20 years later, tragedy draws Chris back to the town he grew up in, and old wounds are ripped open. Although Chris had escaped from a turbulent period in his childhood, returning to the scene of where it all began brings back the pain and terrifying memories.
Past Dark is masterfully told, and calls to mind the work of Stephen King. I highly recommend this book to anyone that enjoys traditional horror.
Tell me your favorite books of 2015 in the comments!
Happy Holidays, everyone! If it seems as though I’ve been quiet as of late, you’re right, and for good reason. I’ve been hard at work on several upcoming writing projects. In fact, this is the busiest I’ve been at any point within the last five years, and I love it!
While I’m not yet ready to divulge everything in progress, I’m very excited today to reveal first details about my next book: Planet of Ice.
Some things in life simply go together: peanut butter and chocolate; crackers and cheese; J.J. Abrams and Star Wars (sorry, haters, but flaws aside, The Force Awakens was awesome); and now David K. Hulegaard and Tony Healey.
Written in collaboration with the English best-selling author (and good friend), Planet of Ice is book two in the Broken Stars Sci-Fi series. Working with Tony in this capacity was an absolute pleasure, and as the series creator, his wealth of knowledge and guidance were invaluable. I can’t say enough positive things about the experience.
My goal with Planet of Ice was to handle Tony’s universe with great care, and put my spin on the story and characters while still coloring inside the lines. Tony granted me such creative freedom that my imagination was never restrained or compromised. I never felt afraid to try something bold and make it ‘mine.’ If I ever veered too far off course with an idea, he steered me back on track gently.
The Broken Stars series is about an extraordinary boy named Max, whose destiny is part of a master plan to restore order to the galaxy. In Planet of Ice, we follow him on the next leg of his adventure, and learn more about his team… and those who stand in his way.
When a mysterious message prompts Delta to leave the crew unexpectedly, Max and company pursue her to a mining colony on Quaris—a distant planet with a seedy reputation. To find Delta, the team must traverse a harsh, unforgiving environment; face a network of deadly mercenaries; and uncover powerful secrets beneath the planet’s frozen crust.
Planet of Ice releases in late January 2016. If you’re interested in an advanced reader’s copy in exchange for a review, please contact me for more information.
If you haven’t already, be sure to check out book one in the Broken Stars series: Age of Destiny. Tony is a master storyteller, and he has set the stage for an amazing voyage across the galaxy.
I’d like to thank Tony Healey for putting his trust in me, and for allowing me to play in his sandbox. I had a great time doing so, and I hope everyone will enjoy it. And who knows? If all goes well, I may even have my hand in the next installment as well. 🙂
At the beginning of this year I released a charity anthology, featuring the work of 16 fantastic writers and the artwork of the legendary Bruce Pennington, with all proceeds to go to The Cystic Fibrosis Trust (we’ve not hit enough for a donation yet – but we’re getting there).
The original inspiration for that collection of stories – and for doing something to raise funds for CF in the first place – is a little girl called Tilly.
She has a chance to win a free holiday with her Mummy and Daddy next year, but she needs your help. It’s very easy and will only take 2 minutes of your time.
Step 1. Click this link
Step 2. LIKE the Haven Facebook page (you can always UN-LIKE it later).
Step 3. Hit the VOTE button.
Of course, if you wanted to be super-duper cool you could also share the above link and get your friends to vote too. In fact, here’s the link again in case you want to do that.
I’d like to see Tilly reach 1,000 votes and take first place. I’ll also be promoting this via my Official Facebook Page, too.
Thanks for your help and support. Let’s win this brave little girl a holiday.
Got a question for the panel? Tweet it to me or click “leave a reply.”
This week: How do you deal with writer’s block?
David K. Hulegaard, author of the Noble series, Strangers
Always know where you’re headed before you even write the first word. If you think through your story carefully, and create a detailed outline to follow, then writer’s block should never become an issue. That said, if you ever do find yourself struggling to make progress, put down your project and start writing something else. Anything else. It doesn’t matter. Exercise your brain. Keep your mind stimulated and your creative juices flowing. After some time away, you should be able to jump right back into your primary project with a fresh perspective and new ideas.
Bernard Schaffer, author of the Superbia, Guns of Seneca 6, and Grendel Unit series
Writer’s block is a waste of time for serious authors who should be focusing on growing their body of work. It’s meaningless self-gratification. It’s a distraction that should be avoided like bushes of poison ivy. It’s emptier than a classroom of students interested in exploring the underlying depths to Michael Bay movies. To be perfectly blunt: it am dumb.
Wait, you said writer’s block? I was talking about blogging.
I don’t believe in either one.
Tony Healey, author of the Far From Home and Fallen Crown series
Writer’s block is an excuse. A way of saying, “I can’t be bothered,” and making it look like you have a head cold. Everyone who believes in such a mystery flu has their own remedy: “Go for long walks!” “Give yourself time out!” or “Here Are My Top Ten Tips for Beating Dreaded Writer’s Block!”
There is no such thing. If you’ve run out of gas, you’re burned out . . . it’s not writers block. You’re just bloody tired. Have a rest. Don’t do any writing for a few weeks. Watch some TV. Writer’s block is not to be confused with “I’ve run out of ideas”. To be frank, if the latter applies to you, then you have no business writing in the first place.
Everyone is a veritable fountain of ideas, of creativity. Nobody dries up. Even if you find yourself playing with the same motifs, the same themes, the same character archetypes . . . it’s all jazz. That’s what writing is: pulling stuff out of thin air, laying it down on paper, getting it to a point where you’re happy with it, and moving on to the next best thing. You don’t say “I’ve got Writer’s Block”, you say “I’m tired”.
You rest, then you come back and give it your all. And probably you’ll get tired again. That’s the nature of the beast, my friend. That’s the result of putting so much of your heart into making the smoothest jazz ever heard. And thank the maker you did.
William Vitka, author of the Hroza Connection and The Bartender series
Writer’s block is utter crap. It’s the literary equivalent of self-diagnosing yourself with Asperger syndrome to explain your shitty, anti-social behavior. If you are stricken with a case of ‘I can’t write,’ then write something anyway. Chances are, you’ll fall into the flow again. It’s almost like muscle memory. Don’t over-think it.
Over the past few weeks, you’ve likely seen me posting several updates about the Edge of Oblivion anthology. I’ve been enjoying chatting with other authors about their stories featured in the collection, but I haven’t really done much speaking about my own; and I work in marketing for a living, folks. 🙂
Edge of Oblivion
First let me say this about the anthology: I love it! It’s chock-full of engaging, twisted and sometimes creepy tales by some of the most creative writers I’ve ever had the privilege of reading. Whether you enjoy Twilight Zone-caliber mysteries, time-bending head scratchers, post-apocalyptic tales of futures to come, traditional ghost stories or pornographic sci-fi (yes, I’m looking at you, Tony), there is a little something for everyone.
On a personal note, I read Keri Knutson’s “Jingle, Jingle” right before bedtime. I would strongly advise against doing that. 🙂
So, that brings us to my contribution: “The Tunnel.” Tony Healey, the man behind the Edge of Oblivion anthology, was one of the biggest supporters of my short story compilation Strangers. He contacted me last year and told me about his vision for a speculative fiction anthology. He’d been kicking around the idea as a fundraiser opportunity for The Cystic Fibrosis Trust.
I was beyond flattered when Tony said that “The Tunnel” fit perfectly within his vision and asked for permission to include it. Naturally, I jumped at the chance, especially since all proceeds were being donated to charity. I’ve heard from readers that “The Tunnel” was their favorite Strangers story, so I welcomed the opportunity to get it out in front of a new audience.
Strangers on a Train
The concept behind “The Tunnel” was pretty basic. From my own travels, I have heard a plethora of local legends and myths about particular towns and buildings. One that really stood out for me was the tale of the Moonville Tunnel in Ohio.
It’s a great story in its own right, but being a writer, the gears started spinning. Using the real world history of Moonville as inspiration, I wrote “The Tunnel,” which explored the dark side of a seemingly innocuous train ride from Cleveland to Cincinnati.
A young artist named Colin swaps stories with Herbert, an old-timer with a love of the rails, to entertain themselves over the long trip. However, a series of strange events occur as the train nears a tunnel known to locals as the Starlight Mile.
Show & Tell
The Edge of Oblivion anthology is a steal at $2.99, but don’t just take my word for it. Here’s a quick taste of what you can expect!
An excerpt from “The Tunnel”
“Well then, what about you, Mr. Herbert?” Colin shut his notebook and set it down beside him. “I imagine you’ve heard some great stories in your day. Do you have a favorite?”
“I’ve traveled far and wide for many years. I have heard thousands of different tales, but if I did have a favorite, I think yours may have just topped it.” Herbert removed a handkerchief from his pocket and wiped his nose. “However, now that you mention it, I think I do have one that’s appropriate. Let me ask you, do you like scary stories?”
Colin reigned in his jubilant expression and looked at the old man cockeyed. “Um, I guess so.”
“Splendid! Then I think you’re really going to love this one. It’s a story that originated in Ohio. Come to think of it, it happened on this very train route.”
Colin rolled his eyes and said, “Please don’t tell me this is going to end with a train car full of blonde bimbos and a hook stuck to the outside door handle.”
“Of course not,” Herbert said. “This is a story about the tunnel.”
“What tunnel? We’ve already passed through several.”
“Indeed, young Colin, there are many tunnels on the path ahead, but nothing like the Starlight Mile.”
“I’ve never heard of that and I’ve lived in Ohio for years.” Colin folded his arms across his chest.
“Well, no, Colin. I wouldn’t figure that you had. The story reveals a time in history that Ohio would rather forget, but us old timers? We know the truth.”
“Are you sure?”
“Ah, I always appreciate a good skeptic. You want proof, and I will oblige. I want you to count to thirty and then look out the window. If I’m telling you the truth, you will see a hill lined with old stone markers.”
Colin humored the old man and counted off to thirty out loud as Herbert looked on. When Colin reached the number thirty, he turned to the side and looked outside. “All I see are a bunch of trees, Herbert. I’ll give you credit, though. You had me going for a—”
Colin stopped short after a break in the trees gave way to large mound of earth. Stone markers littered the path up to the top of the hill, just as Herbert had said.
Get Edge of Oblivion for your Kindle today!