The Stable Instability

Hello readers! Never fear, I’m still alive. Just hard at work on episode #10 of Fireteam Freelance.

Episode ten? Why yes, I am getting that far ahead. Which is good, because these last episodes are probably going to be pretty titanic. “Season finale” and all that.

Of course, having a pretty good buffer does mean that this Friday will see the release of the next big episode: Missing Persons. I’m pretty pleased with how this episode turned out. Not only did we get a neat view of a future cityscape, but we also got to see a seriously cool action sequence. And some more puzzle pieces clicking together …

Anyway, that will be up this Saturday, so be sure to keep an eye open. We’ve passed the halfway point with Mandatory Takeout, so things are coming together and moving with a swifter and swifter pace, and again, I’m pretty pleased with some of the action sequences from this Saturday’s episode. They’re pretty crazy.

So, moving on to further news: Facebook advertising is now rolling forward. It’s still somewhat experimental, and I’ll admit I don’t have the strongest grasp on it yet (a lot of this is very much learn as you go), but I desperately needed something to combat the abject slump that came about with the reopening of the economy. Sorry, partial reopening. A topic which I won’t get into outside of saying “It’s divisive.”

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Happy Memorial Day!

Unsurprisingly, when I posted last Friday, I absolutely forgot that today was Memorial Day! It had registered at some point in the back of my mind, but it wasn’t until yesterday that I connected things far enough to realize “Hold on a moment, I don’t do Being a Better Writer on Memorial Day. It’s a holiday.”

So there won’t be a Being a Better Writer post today. Instead, go out and celebrate Memorial Day! Or honor it, if that’s open to you.

colony-finalAnd if you’re looking for something to do, well, why not grab a copy of Colony and get caught up for your Fireteam Freelance binge?

Either way, enjoy your Memorial Day, all of you, and I’ll see you another day! And if you’re really bummed there isn’t a new Being a Better Writer post today, hit that search bar on the side and browse some old ones! Even I forget how many there are these days!

Updates, Queries, Facebook, and More

Hey folks! Who’s ready for a weekend?

I certainly am. This week has been, no mistake, all over the place. I’m looking forward to some relaxation when the weekend hits, that’s for sure! Not too much, though. I’ve still got work on Stranded to think about. Slowly but surely, that story grinds forward.

But that’s not what I wanted to talk about today. Well, outside of reassuring some expectant readers that it’s still coming. No, today’s post is a bit of a grab bag post, talking about everything that’s been going on. Such as Fireteam Freelance.


Last night I put the finishing touch on episode #9 of Fireteam Freelance, and it was a good one. I’m not going to spoil how, or why, but I think it may be one of my personally favorites in the series to date.

You readers, of course, are still on episode #6 (Mandatory Takeout). So I think it’s safe to say the backlog is building up pretty well right now. Today I start episode #10, which marks a noted shift as, well, it’s near the end of the season. Again, no spoilers, but with a name like Swift Tilt, those of you invested in the universe can probably make some good estimates. And if you’ve been carefully hording your puzzle pieces so far, trying to piece together everything … get ready. That’s all I’ll say.

Granted, you’ve got some time yet. Tomorrow’s update will be another interview, the second-to-last, this time with the team’s close-combat specialist, Ursa. The Saturday after that will see the release of episode #7, Missing Persons, and you are not going to want to miss it. The week after that? You’ll have to see, but I think many of you will find it worth the wait.


Now, that’s not all the news I have on Fireteam Freelance. For those of you readers here that are familiar with the website SpaceBattles, I’ve begun considering posting episodes of Fireteam Freelance there on their fiction boards. Why? Well, I’ve noticed a few other posters of original fiction posting material that has come from their work elsewhere, and it could be good publicity. Those of you here who hail from SpaceBattles, what say ye? I know you’re here, since I see the link-trackbacks from time to time. And I am on SpaceBattles myself.

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New Fireteam Freelance Tomorrow! Plus a Topic Call!

Hey readers! Just a quick heads-up: Episode 5 of Fireteam Freelance drops tomorrow!

That’s right, it’s finally here! Catch Your Breath sees the team once again hired by Commander Castillo’s “old friend” for a job that takes them to the Corporate Dragon Bloc with a very specific goal in mind. What is it? Well, to find out you’ll have to read it. Suffice to say, shots will be fired, and a lot of them.

That said, how are you readers finding Freelance so far? Personally, I still find it a bit different than my usual fare: It’s much more focused on delivering a hit of action with every episode and having less time spent on the character of the team, since there’s only so much space per episode and that action does need to happen. That, and it’s episodic. At this point someone could jump in with the latest episode, I feel, and still enjoy the explosions, gunfire, and action without knowing too much about the overarching narrative or setting (though that’s all still there).

Anyway, while I hope you’re all enjoying it, I do acknowledge that this is somewhat experimental and may be a little different than say, Colony or Jungle. Rest assured, Starforge won’t be following the pattern of episodic style this story is working with. Fireteam Freelance is very much a one-off experiment. Just one I hope you’re enjoying and finally does give a little more glimpse at what life back on Earth can be like … or as close as we get through the lens of a merc company living in the Dragon Bloc.

So tune in tomorrow as episode 5 drops at last! 10 AM EST!

Now, on to the second part of this post: the Topic Call!

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News Time: Upcoming Fireteam Freelance Episodes!

Hey readers! I’ve got some news for you!

For starters, I just finished up Episode 5 of Fireteam FreelanceCatch Your Breath. Which means tomorrow I’ll start work on Episode 6, and we’ll be halfway through the season!

Or I will, anyway. And while you all might be expecting a new episode this Saturday, I’m actually going to drop another interview, this time with the team’s sniper: Zhang “Owl” Li.

Why? For one, I think her interview coming before this episode will give her scenes in it some added context. And secondly, because I’m all right with having a little bit of a buffer as I race to get episode six written.

So this Saturday, the interview with Owl will go live! But that’s not all that will go live. Those of you who have been keeping up will recall the second part of Adah’s interview went up a few weeks ago. Well, this Saturday the uncensored raw of that interview will go up on Patreon for Patreon Supporters. As with Part #1, supporters might find some interesting differences between the two!

So to summarize, new Fireteam Freelance interview this Saturday, new episode next Saturday.

So, with that said, how are you all finding the episodes so far? I can track the stats on my side, and they seem to be drawing in readers. I know they’re a bit different from my usual fare, but have they continued to be enjoyable and entertaining now that we’re four episodes in? Have any of you figured out the timeline of events and started to draw connections between FreelanceColony, and Jungle yet?

After all, this may be episodic, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been weaving this all together carefully with little hints and whatnot!

Anyway, tune in Saturday for the Owl interview (or the uncut Adah interview if you’re a supporter). That’s all for now!

“A Trial for a Dragon” Moves into Beta!

Hello readers! I’ve got news! One specific bit of news, to be precise. A Trial for a Dragon is moving from Alpha to Beta!

Plot holes and missteps have been cleaned up. Segments rewritten, rephrased, or even in some cases cut. And with a ticking clock hanging above it, it’s time for the next phase.

Beta Reading! As before, those of you that have been prior Beta Readers should watch your inboxes, as I’ll be sending you invitations to participate shortly after this goes live. Those of you that are interested in being Beta Readers for the first time, leave a comment and I’ll get in touch with you.

Tomorrow I’ll have a new Quarantine Chat post, just so I’m not totally absent from the site (sorry, been editing).

Again, I know this isn’t much of a post. Just kind of working to keep all the plates spinning. Check your inboxes, Beta Team!

And with that, I’ve got writing to do on the next episode of Fireteam Freelance!

“A Trial for a Dragon” Alpha Reader Call!

Hello readers! As society breaks down outside your door, I’ve got good news! The kind that’s good enough for you to put down that bat you’ve been hammering nails int, and maybe even make you reconsider putting on those post-apocalyptic leathers for another day or so.

A Trial for a Dragon, my entry for Parliament of Wizards (more at the link if you’re lost) is now ready for Alpha!

Yes, it took a few days, even once the first draft was done. See, the submission limit where wordcount is concerned for Parliament is 17,500 words, and the first draft of Trial clocked in at around 19,960 or something like that. So clearly I had to do some cutting and trimming. A lot of cutting a trimming. Sands, I even rewrote the entire introduction, cutting out some elements and getting it down to about 1,500 words less.

If you’re a Patreon Supporter, by the way, the original, expanded introduction is a supporter reward, so it’s not gone forever.

What’s Trial about, you may ask? Well, I’ll leave that for the jump. First I want to make two details clear:

  1. It’s time for Alpha Readers to have a crack at it.
  2. Work on the next episode of Fireteam Freelance has begun.

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