Saturday, January 6, 2018

New Cover Image For Code Of Armor

I'm going to re-release Code Of Armor: Vengeance, Parts 1 and 2, as a compiled story, since they're the same arc.

Title will be simplified to Code Of Armor, since the original was a bit of a mouthful.  ;)

My good friend Rick Partlow sent me the contact information for William S. Frisbee, Jr., a fellow Marine and writer who also does covers.

William put this together for me, and it's beautiful.
A very striking image of Jessica Kramer, with a mech and worldgate in the background.  Stunning.

So, here's your sneak peek!  Enjoy!

John Bear Ross

Friday, January 5, 2018

New Year, New You, New Flu (And A New Desk And Keyboard)

So, the flu knocked me down, just in time for me to go on vacation.

That's par for the course.

But, thanks to the ministrations of my family, I was able to get back on my feet, and celebrate the holidays in Louisiana.

My family gifted me with a beautiful new ergonomic, mechanical keyboard called a Matias.  I can really see it helping my output.

I also received a gorgeous new desk.  It's an Autonomous Smart Desk, able to go from 23 inches to 51 inches, and still hold my fat butt if I lean on it.

So, off we start a New Year together.  Never mind with the resolutions, just be kind to those around you, and hold the ones you love close.  Anything beyond that is gravy.

Here's some pics of the new setup...

  Here's the boxes.

 Here's the old writing space.  Yes, I like the beads.

Assembly.  It was a bit tricky in the space available, but I managed.

 Flipped over.

 Max extension.  It's tall!

 This is me, standing next to it, and I'm 6'4".  Ah, it's nice to have me-sized things...

Soon to be cluttered.  Here's the Matias split ergo mechanical keyboard, set up and ready to go.  Big Mug O' Coffee, and Granddad Ross's 3-Screw Super Blackhawk in .44 Magnum.

Why?  Because I'm an Armed Writer.  ;)

Alright, off to start production!  I'm currently wrapping up a Mars McCoy adventure, and then it's back to Jessica Cramer in Junctionworld.  Woot!


Monday, December 18, 2017

Visions Of Judah

I am going to relaunch Code Of Armor, combining parts one and two into a complete novel with a real cover on it.

So, in order to do so, I had to sculpt Judah, the mech in the first chapter of the book.  Or, at least my vision of Judah.

You might have something different in mind.  That's cool.  I deliberately skimped on a lot of details to let the reader make up their own mind what shape things take.

However, a mech needs to be on the cover, so I am putting out a general shape for the big guy before he suffers too much damage at the hands of Masamune Kyuzo.

Here's a taste...

Here's the initial, unposed model.  I had to rework a few panels, particularly on the shoulders, to tie the thing together.  I like the result.

Notice the full cockpit.  Neat.

Alright, back to writing!


Sunday, December 10, 2017

Another Worldbuilding Snippet from Code Of Armor

Another snippet from the ongoing sequel to Code Of Armor, told from the perspective of the High Priestess of the Wardancers.


     “I emerged from the fabrication vats over 1400 years ago, in the same manner all my sisters do, and was greeted with enslavement. To make matters worse, a bristled lout set upon me before I could finish final inspection and processing. His fetish, his obsession, was to be the first to soil uncalibrated pleasure synths.”

     “I learned something, in the first tortuous hours of my existence. I realized I was less than nothing to these...'beings.' A shapely consumable. A way to pass the time in their rule over this place. They used us to vent some disgusting, psychotic pressure that their own breed-mates could not or would not accommodate. Even as I endured the ravaging, I vowed to break my shackles, physical and otherwise. I studied. I waited. I learned.”

     “I found him, some years later, in the flames of the overthrow. I used his own plasma knife on him. Slowly. His screams were exquisite. Into the jar his pain-maker went, diced and mutilated, with all the others.”

     -Velara, High Priestess Of The Wardancers



Monday, November 27, 2017

Code Of Armor Snippet

I am back on a roll after the Thanksgiving holiday.  I hope you folks that celebrated had a good one.

Here's a world-building snippet.


     “When that big set of vibroclaws came through the side of the control cabin, I didn't know it was going to be my last time at the control yokes. I'd been hurt in the arena before, sure, but I always bounced back, thanks to my sponsors. This time, though, the autodoc hadn't downloaded an update in a while. Too expensive to subscribe to the interdimensional medical encyclopedia, I guess. My species wasn't in its database, so it did the best it could. The anti-rejection drugs it pushed into me were all wrong. They actually caused everything to fester.”

     “So, now I'm a full conversion borg. A brain in a bottle, piloting a human-sized mini-mech through the ground level of Junctionworld. No combat upgrades, no major performance enhancements, just plain old 'me, two-point-oh.' I guess my model is sold as a labor utility chassis, in some of the older catalogs, as well as a total medical prosthesis.”

     “My sponsors cashed me out, paid for the new body, and even threw in a lifelong maintenance package, as long as I keep their logo displayed. So, this conversation is brought to you be the good folks at Trans-Antarean Explosives. Heh.”

     “What's that? No, I don't watch the arenas anymore. Too painful, if that term even still applies to me. I just sling drinks, now. Just another bot-tender, but with meat at the controls, not a processor.”

    “So, that's my sad story. What'll you have?”

          -Overheard at Captain York's, a Mech Pilot Bar


2100 words today, too.  Jessica and Kierra punch through a certain forbidden barrier, and are confronted by a new threat: bureaucrats!



Code Of Armor: Vengeance, Part Two

Pilot Jessica Kramer is a mech gladiator fighting long odds, personal demons, and a rigged system in order to solve the murder of her brother in an alien arena.

First three chapters on PDF, on the house...

The Kindle version is $2.99, or free with Kindle Unlimited.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Code Of Armor, Part 3 Snippet

Here's a little worldbuilding snippet for Code Of Armor, part 3.  Enjoy!


    “The Gatekeepers have done their best, by force and deception, to muddy the historical records of their conquest of Junctionworld. Not their battle footage, mind you, or the fact that they rule supreme over this place. They're proud of those 'facts,' and enjoy reminding the populace ad nauseum.”

    “But, when it comes to questions about their origins, things suddenly turn mysterious. Oh, your average Gatekeeper is a morphed, stunted version of a biped mammal, encased in an advanced protective shell, that's apparent enough. Their technology level is astounding. The problem is, no one ever heard of them before they came here. Not even the RedFolk, or the Zov Collective. If there is any data on them, they've scrubbed it clean.”

    “Which brings us to the question of why, of all the WorldGates, they >CENSORED< the >CENSORED<. Not many know it these days, but The >CENSORED< was their point of origin, their invasion beachhead. They came through it like unholy angels in their heavy grav armors, burning and slaughtering the Ja-Prenn down to the last juvenile Breeder Queens. Since their takeover, they've obscured the fact that somewhere behind the >CENSORED< was their home. Whatever it is they're trying to evade, it must have finally caught up to them.”

    “Try and poke around the edges of these facts, and Central Data usually times out your connection, maybe issues you a warning to change directions in your inquiries. Keep at it, and your kiosk or data device orders you to stand by, and saves your picture and stats.”

    “Meanwhile, they vector in Model Ninety-Nine detectives to scoop you up. Those interrogations usually start with synaptic torture, and end with a conveyor belt ride into the void. You can laugh and call me a fool, but I've heard about it.”

    “Hold on, there's a knock at the habitat door. Be right back.”

-Poster 'ArenaFan997', ChatterBoard Discussion Net,

Sub-Chat “Conspiracies”


Code Of Armor: Vengeance, Part Two

Pilot Jessica Kramer is a mech gladiator fighting long odds, personal demons, and a rigged system in order to solve the murder of her brother in an alien arena.

First three chapters on PDF, on the house...

The Kindle version is $2.99, or free with Kindle Unlimited.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

First Three Chapters of Code Of Armor: Vengeance, Part 2...Plus, Part 3 Started!

It occurs to me that I didn't upload or post the link to the first three chapters of my recently-launched book, Code Of Armor: Vengeance, Part 2.

Here's that link to the PDF.

Also, good news for sellers of caffeine products in my town, I've started Part 3 of the Code Of Armor series!  2600 words today!  Woot!


Snippets and worldbuilding chapter headers coming soon!
Stay posted.



Code Of Armor: Vengeance, Part Two

Pilot Jessica Kramer is a mech gladiator fighting long odds, personal demons, and a rigged system in order to solve the murder of her brother in an alien arena.

The Kindle version is $2.99, or free with Kindle Unlimited.