Thursday, November 8, 2012

DAX RIGBY, WAR CORRESPONDENT Receives a 5.0 Stars Review

I'm happy to announce that Rochelle Weber gave my SF adventure/romance/suspense/ mystery Dax Rigby, War Correspondent a 5.0 Stars Review.  Rochelle writes:

This is a page-turner.  The action starts the minute Dax’s boots hit dirt on the planet Arcadia, and it doesn’t stop.  Almost everyone is a suspect, and it’s difficult to tell reality from hallucination at times.

From the author: This novel, published by MuseItUp Publishing, features a tropical mysterious planet with two alien races; a murderous conspiracy and a hidden killer; an amorous pilot with her sights set on Dax whose girl is located back home on Earth 90,000 long light-years away, a bitter war on Earth between East and West and much more.
Readers can read Rochelle Weber's full review at her site, Rochelle's Reviews:

Length:  250
Price:  $5.95


Friday, November 2, 2012

I've Just Published My Second Audiobook

                                                       by John B. Rosenman                           

My second SF/ Adventure /Romance audiobook Beyond Those Distant Stars was and is published by Mundania Press as a trade paperback and in various e-formats, and last month it was released by as an audiobook.  I invite all readers to check out a short free reading sample from my novel at the site below. 

Just type my name in the Keyword search box in the upper left corner and it should take you to the novel.  In the short sample, Stella McMasters, the heroine, finds herself in a deadly crisis.  If you get the chance, drop me a line at my blog and tell me what you think, good or bad. (

My first audiobook, A Senseless Act of Beauty, is my 115,000 word SF Action/Adventure Romantic Epic partly inspired by the fifties movies classic Forbidden Planet.  Boy, I always get a rush and feel a bit pompous when I describe a novel I've written as an epic.  It's published by Dave Wilson's Crossroad Press, and he's the prime mover along with the superb reader B. J. Harrison, who picked it out of many others.  Same drill.  Use the search box and let me know what you think. I hope to learn from your comments. Much obliged, gentle readers.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Happy Endings or Sad: When, if Ever, is Poor Writing Good?

by John B. Rosenman

In our writer’s group, we have a woman writing a chicklit novel. Basically it’s about four or five career girls/women scheming and conniving to meet Mr. Right, variously called “Mr. Success,” “Mr. Wallet,” “Mr. Hunk.” Their goals are clearly defined, pragmatic, predatory, and ruled by self-interest. After all, some of them are past thirty and their biological clocks are ticking. A girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do. Getting a man, preferably a rich, successful, handsome man isn’t everything, however. A couple of the main characters want to cling to that man’s coattails to get promoted and climb the corporate ladder. Still, landing a winner is the main thing, as indicated by the novel’s title, which I will leave to your imagination.

This is the first novel of this kind I’ve read, and it’s been an eye-opening experience for me. Besides the efficient man-hunting plot, the writer (I’ll call her Laverne) is superb at describing cosmetics, furnishings, and the various bric-a-brac of these women’s daily existence. When I go to a party or enter a dining room, I rarely notice what the place settings are or what people are wearing. But Laverne is great at describing silverware and tablecloths, bathroom fixtures and shower jets, 900 different types of flowers and Dior Toffee eye shadow. I wouldn’t know peach highlighter from Mango Shine lipstick at gunpoint, but Laverne excels in such areas.

Now, I’m not putting Laverne down. Really. She is a highly competent writer, and the women, while often single-minded and mercenary, are brilliantly characterized and sometimes sympathetic. Laverne’s novel is professionally crafted, and if it didn’t violate the basic principle that Romance novels should focus on only one couple and one relationship, I have little doubt she would be able to sell it for significant bucks – something, by the way, which I find it hard to do.

So what’s my problem? Simply that in the last thirty pages of the novel’s first draft, events, in my opinion, took a wrong direction. After three hundred plus pages of Grey’s Anatomy, i.e., relationship problems, star-crossed lovers, SEX, financial problems, family problems, SEX, etc., everything resolved itself in a HAPPY or HEA ENDING. Okay, perhaps not everything, but enough to trouble me. Couples ironed out their problems and got together.  A case of possible breast cancer turned out to be benign. And most of the career girls who were fired, fell on their feet with new, better paying jobs. Most of the folks in my writer’s group liked the ending, whereas I saw it as implausible and as ruining the novel. I mean, life just doesn’t work out that way. Occasionally, one or two or three things will fall into place, but everybody can’t ride off into the sunset to the swell of violins, can they?  Or maybe they can.

Astute and insightful reader and/or writer, this is the main question I am submitting to you: IF READERS OF A PARTICULAR GENRE OR TYPE OF NOVEL EXPECT OR WANT SOMETHING, DOES THAT MAKE IT GOOD? I’ve always assumed that if there are 16 billion ways to write a short story or a novel, then only one of those 16 billion is the absolute best, and all the others are to be avoided, but perhaps I’m wrong. Whether in romantic novels or romantic movies, if folks want a happy ending, isn’t that the best way to end it?

By implication, questions might be asked about other areas. For example is the quality of an “extreme” horror novel directly proportional to the amount of gore, vomit, violence and dismemberment it contains? The higher the body count there is, the better?

I know this is a subject many of you are familiar with, and in various guises, it’s been discussed before. Heck, I’ve discussed and debated it before with intelligent romance writers who prefer HEA or at least HFN (Happy For Now) endings.  What makes it especially relevant to writers is that highly formulaic writing is often required in the marketplace. When it comes to Happy Endings, I can understand it – up to a point. When we read that thriller or suspense novel, that romance or western, usually we don’t want futility. We don’t want to see the good guys or gals stomped into a giant blot of gore on the horizon. In general such writing is not commercially successful, though there are exceptions. But a Happy Face for all or nearly all of the main (and some minor) characters runs the risk of being a cheat, no matter how superficially satisfying it might be.

A few years back, I wrote an essay for titled, “Editors are Irrational (And Publishers, Agents Too) ( . . . Mainly for Newer Writers)”. The premise was that many editors’/publishers’ requirements for stories and novels are based on “a highly subjective sniff test of personal preference” and often are “unreasonable,” “too quirky and idiosyncratic.” It can get to the point where a story can be rejected if a character wears a plaid shirt or appears to be gay. What I am talking about here, in this essay, is a broader, industry-wide set of requirements and expectations, what is sometimes called a “slant.” While many of us are aware of this concept (we have to be, in order to get published), I suspect we occasionally rail and grumble about the unreasonable strictures and requirements we face.

So, to the beginning writer, I urge you to do your homework. Whatever area you are writing in, whether SF, Romance, Horror, Western, or what have you, read a lot within it and find out what you can and cannot do. That way, if you do decide to break a rule or two, you can at least do it intelligently and with purpose. Learn the do’s and don’ts, the taboos and traditional tropes. Otherwise, you may face many years knocking on doors which no one opens.

Speaking of doors, I hope I’ve nudged one of my own ajar. I invite writers to contact me at, or leave a note at this blog, about creatively stultifying rules they’ve faced. Maybe it’s not the requisite Happy Ending or Excessive Sex/Gore/Violence, but something else, such as Tom Monteleone complaining years ago that horror publishers required skeletons or monsters on covers. Whatever the case, those rules made you feel you were lowering and betraying the quality of your work by adhering to stupid requirements you didn’t believe in. Perhaps you were told a particular rule was good, that it was established long ago by wiser heads than yours, but deep in your gut, you remained unconvinced.

C’mon, let’s hear your stories. I bet you’ll feel better getting them off your chest. And that in itself would be a happy ending.

Sunday, July 22, 2012


Cover Art by Caniglia

Sometimes they come b-a-a-a-c-c-c-k!

In 2004 I published a creepy and erotic short story called "Through a Glass, Brightly" in a 300 page trade paperback short story collection.  PEEP SHOW, Vol. 1 is edited by Paul Fry.  As you can tell from the cover above and from some of the titles, this isn't an anthology intended for the faint of heart.  The titles include "Closer to Death," "Acid Love," "Peeping.Com," "Drowning," "Snake Charmer," and so on.

Well, folks, you all know the digital revolution is here and the eBook is king.  In this spirit, I introduce the eBook version of PEEP SHOW, Vol. 1 just released this month, July 2012.

It's now available directly from SST Publications at, from Amazon, Apple's iBookstore, and it's coming soon from Barnes & Noble.  $14.95 PB; $6.99 Kindle.

Be sure to leave the lights on at bedtime!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012


by John B. Rosenman

So often, we like to think we are rational, loving creatures when unknown even to ourselves, we are just the opposite: mad, cruel, selfish, and lustful.  We pray to God and secretly worship the powers of darkness.  In my story, “Wet Dreams,” a couple rents a mansion in the country for the summer to mend their troubled marriage.  Will they succeed?  It all depends what happens after they make love and close their eyes.  Yes, in dreams lie salvation, but it’s also true, as Goya wrote, that “The sleep of reason produces monsters.”  (Available at MuseItUp Publishing, and at Amazon, .


An hour later, he lay back naked and basked in the afterglow. Karen herself turned off the lights and snuggled happily against him, both their bodies covered by a single sheet. Like him, she was exhausted and drenched with sweat. He listened to her breathing slow and descend toward sleep.

Mirrors. We're surrounded by mirrors here.

Eyes closed, he thought of their coupling, entangled bodies, which they had seen reflected from many positions: he above her, then behind, Karen above, and then receiving him sideways. He started to smile but found himself imagining their own images watching them in the shadows like second selves. Who knows, perhaps their alter egos would wait till they slept and then creep into their bodies and possess their souls. And, in the morning, when they awoke...

Where had he gotten such a weird idea? He tried to puzzle it out, but sleep soon stole upon him.

Sometime later he awoke, smelling perfume. Something exotic—jasmine? Whatever it was, it must be his imagination because Karen wasn't wearing any. But it was so sweet and fragrant, so... 

He had an erection.

He grunted in surprise and pulled down the sheet, feeling himself. Yes, he was hard, fiercely rampant. His penis jutted boldly out, throbbing with lust.

Turning to Karen, he pulled the sheet off her. Through a window, moonlight speared her naked form.


No answer, so he lowered his lips and kissed her breasts, then nibbled and caressed a nipple. She moaned. His lips descended along her stomach, and his tongue soon explored her musky depths. Gently, her hips began to rock against his mouth.

Pulling back, he knelt between her white thighs…hesitating. What was he doing? She wasn't even awake. But he could smell her arousal, as well as that strange, sweet perfume. Lowering himself, he entered her, feeling her legs rise and lock about his waist. No, there was nothing wrong with this. Even in her sleep, she wanted him!

He began to move, his blood singing with lust. She was so wet, so warm and slippery. It felt so damned good, that he drove himself feverishly into her and bit her earlobe, drawing drops of thick, hot blood.

As he did, she seized his back and tipped him over, moving so that she was on top. He started to laugh, to chide her for her deception, but in the moonlight, he saw it was not Karen above him. Karen was blonde and slender, not this dark, voluptuous woman with huge breasts and erect nipples who laughed in passion and ran her hands through the long lush waterfall of her black hair. He watched her arch her neck toward the ceiling, her throat trembling. And all about them, suddenly, their images sprang forth despite the darkness, gleaming with sweat in the bright mirrors. As they all moved, the waterbed rocked and flowed like the sea, blood-warm and eternal.

“Oh, Rex!” She moaned. “Hurt me a little.”


She looked down at him, her dark eyes glittering, her face beautiful and bewitching. “I said ‘Hurt me,’ dammit!”

He started to say he wasn't Rex and didn't even know her, but then he found he did, that he had known her for a long time. “Beg me to hurt you, Laura,” he ordered. “Beg me to do whatever the hell I like.”

“Oh, yesss!” Something appeared in her hands, a rope which she looped about his throat and started to pull tight.

“Oh, no, you don't!” he gasped. Rolling, he spilled her off and struggled till he was on top again. Yet she still gripped his throat with the rope, pulling the ends so tightly he could barely breathe.

“When you cum, darling,” she laughed, “you'll also go. It'll be like computing the value of pi, which is to say, the best and longest orgasm of your rotten life! Too bad it will also be your last!”

“Sorry,” he snarled, “but I'm the one who punishes. And Laura, I'm afraid you've been a very naughty little girl!”

He raised his hand, determined to hit her face and breasts. He knew just how to strike so as to cause a maximum of pain with a minimum of marks. Slap! How the bitch's face would contort. Slap! Smash those sweet, firm tits! Try to strangle him, would she? He started to swing, stopping as his inward view shifted. What was he doing? This wasn't Laura; this was his wife Karen. And he was...

Confused, he wavered back and forth, half of him wanting to destroy, the other half struggling to save. Karen. Laura. Love. Hate. Protect. Hurt. And his soul, balanced like smoke on a razor's edge.

(Story available at MuseItUp, Amazon, and elsewhere . . .)

Friday, June 22, 2012


by Tonya Moore

I grew up reading books by the likes of phenomenal authors such as Isaac Asimov, Ray Bradbury and Anne McCaffrey. Their works portrayed space-faring humans and unbelievable creatures having fantastic adventures in distant future and far flung regions of the universe. I fell in love with their stories, the remarkable characters and fantastic worlds their creators envisioned. These were the stories that fueled my desire to write.

The GENRE LOVE Blog Series acquaints readers with aspects of the sci-fi, horror and fantasy genres that inspire, amuse, illuminate and entertain us. It’s a great way to reach out to anyone who’s ever wondered why SF authors write what we write. Guest authors/bloggers are encouraged to share their thoughts on sub-genres and tropes of their choice, along with news of their latest works or current projects.

Genre Love Blog Series | How to Become a Guest Author


The TRIBUTE omnibus consists of five (5) short stories and ten (10) flash fiction pieces spanning the urban fantasy, horror and literary fiction genres. This omnibus is the first of a two-part collection of my work over the past decade. The second ebook "Signal" is scheduled for release this summer.

Buy TRIBUTE: Amazon Kindle | Smashwords (Price: $2.99)

Writers on the Wrong Side of the Road is solid, imaginative fiction for adults written by an interesting lineup of authors in various genres. Let’s face it, sometimes we grown-ups just want to sink our teeth into something a little more substantive than teenage or “Young Adult” fantasy.

Buy From Publisher: Chase Enterprises Print: $23.95| (5 or more copies) $18.68 ea. or Buy from: Amazon (Print) | Amazon (Kindle)| Barnes & Noble

Add to Your Shelf: GoodReads | Shelfari | Library Thing

Tonya R. Moore is a Speculative Fiction writer from Manatee County, Florida. Her stories can be found in publications including Kissed By Venus, Weaponizer, Purple Magazine, eFiction Magazine and recently, Writers on the Wrong Side of the Road anthology.

WIN A FREE COPY: If your comment is chosen by lot, you will win a free e-copy of Writers on the Wrong Side of the Road.  Be sure to comment on Tonya's article if you want a chance at a free e-Book.  Also, be sure to provide your email address and the format you'd like the book to be in.