A Few Updates and a Review

First up, Tom Knighton, an excellent author, has a great review of Echo of the High Kings up. He had some comments that I really appreciated and if you don’t read his stuff, I think he’s a fantastic blogger and author. You can read his review here.

My Liberty Con review went up on Monday. As I said, I met a lot of great people and I mentioned a few of the people I met there at the convention, I didn’t list them all, because I don’t think you want to see long lists of names, but it was funny to me because some of them are names I see every day on Amazon, on the list of “People who bought this book also bought…”

I also wanted to update everyone on my upcoming airing on American Ninja Warrior. The Military themed program will air on Monday, July 6th on NBC and Tuesday, July 7th on Esquire Network. I can’t say anything about what you’ll see, but I had a great time at the event. Be sure to tune in and watch!

Lastly, I wanted to say that I’ll be creating a new program, for those who want periodic updates but don’t regularly read my blog. I’ll have a mailing list which I’ll send out a newsletter once a month with free fiction, snippets, updates on my writing progress, and announcements when books are released. I’ll have a tab on the side and you can sign up now by using the “Contact Kal” page or messaging me on FB with your email.

Advertisements

Wait, It’s Already Over? Liberty Con 28 in Review

20150627_171831Liberty Con has come and gone. It was my first Liberty Con and I had the unique experience of being both a panelist/author, a “First Timer”, and also shepherding around my one year old son. I don’t think I saw nearly as much of the event as I would have liked, but I managed to make it everywhere I was supposed to, more or less awake (the latter part being particularly difficult with a teething one year old).

For those who are fans of Baen authors, this is an amazing convention to attend. For those who just like military SF and Space Opera… well, this is still a great convention to attend. You pretty much can’t throw a rock there without hitting a Mil SF author in the side of the head. It is also a very social convention. Every area seemed to have old friends and new acquaintances chatting each other up. It’s a great place to meet new people, network (for authors, artists, and publishers), and generally have a fun time.

I met a few new and interesting people there and I think I learned a good deal too. I had the pleasure of meeting fellow Henchman Press author, Mark Wandrey. I had a great chat with Chris Kennedy about some of his techniques to stay in contact with readers and build a good network. Lastly, I think I made a great friend with Terry Maggert, who also looks to be a fantastic author and is a charming individual.  Links below for their works and websites.  Trust me, you should check them out.

Mark Wandrey just released the newest book in his ongoing Mil SF series: Etude to War.  Mark is an awesome guy and if you’re a fan of military SF, he’s writing a truly epic series.

Chris Kennedy writes a variety of books and his current best-seller, Janissaries, looks to be amazing.

Terry Maggert not only has amazing cover art but he has an awesome take on contemporary/post apocalyptic fantasy as well as epic fantasy.  I’m excited to have a copy of his book, Banshee, to read.

I met a lot of other great people at Liberty Con, though I’m afraid that child-imposed sleep deprivation has robbed me of many of their names.  It was a great time and I’m already planning on returning next year.  From what I understand, they’ve capped membership again and they’ve already sold over three hundred of their seven hundred and fifty total memberships, so if you want to be there next year, you should hurry up and get yours soon.

Free this Weekend: Look to the Stars

Look to the Stars, a short story by Kal Spriggs
Look to the Stars, a short story by Kal Spriggs

Since I’ll be at Liberty Con this weekend, I’ve made my short story, Look to the Stars, free on Amazon.  This is a short story set in the Shadow Space Universe and tells the story of Mason McGann, a smuggler who lives in the shadows.  Mason finds himself drawn into a dangerous game of politicians and warlords, where one wrong step might spell the end not just for him, but for millions of innocent people.  It is set before the events of The Fallen Race and can be seen as a prologue, of sorts, for the Shadow Space Chronicles.

Mason McGann is a smuggler, a liar, and a cheat. With his ship impounded by customs, he figures he has no choice left but to auction off information about the lost Dreyfus Fleet. But things are never what they seem when you hold information that can change the course of history.

Look to the Stars is free on 28 and 29 June, 2015 on Amazon.  Get your copy here.

Liberty Con at Chattanooga This Weekend!

I’ll be at Liberty Con 28 in Chattanooga this weekend.  I’m really excited to be participating in this convention, as it is one I’ve heard a lot about but I’ve yet to attend.  A lot of people I’ve met at other conventions will be there and a lot of people I’ve only met online will be there as well, so I think it will be a lot of fun.  I’ll be bringing print copies of my books as well as the Renegades shirts and I’ve posted a copy of my schedule below.  If you’re coming, I hope to see you there, and if you aren’t, well I’ll tell you all about it next week!lc28-banner

 

Day Time Name of Event
Fri 04:00PM What’s new in Space Opera?
Fri 05:00PM Opening Ceremonies
Fri 10:00PM Author’s Alley  (Holo, Maggert, Spriggs)
Sat 02:00PM Author’s Alley  (Raufson, Spriggs)
Sat 08:00PM Reading: Thomas Mays & Kal Spriggs
Sat 09:00PM What’s New in Epic Fantasy?
Sun 10:00AM Kaffeeklatsch
Sun 01:00PM Author’s Alley  (Maggert, Spriggs, Wandrey)

Boundless Optimism: Tomorowland Movie Review

Disney's TOMORROWLAND
Disney’s TOMORROWLAND

I just saw Tomorrowland yesterday.  This is a statement where the tense is correct but your brain pauses and says, “Wait, what?”

The movie has become one of my must-haves as far as DVD/Bluray.  Yes, it was that good.  In Tomorrowland, they’ve built a movie which manages to look at the future in a way that is both critical and optimistic.  It’s highly entertaining, with the main character being both humorous and inspiring.

Why is it so good?  Because the main character challenges everything.  When confronted with harsh reality, she challenges people to make it better.  When offered literally no hope, she refuses to believe that there is no hope.  She takes on the hopelessness and nihilism that society seems to have buckled under and her very energy and drive makes it clear how silly we are to have given up already.  She’s challenging the other characters in the movie, but she’s also managing to challenge the audience: don’t give up hope, don’t stop dreaming about a better world.

Does Tomorrowland have flaws?  Of course it does, but it was enjoyable enough that I didn’t care.  This was a movie that after you leave the theater, you want to talk about with your friends.  There were a ton of details with homages and references and it’s a movie that my wife and I spent hours discussing.  It’s a movie that was able to simultaneously represent hope for the future and still fit in a cautionary tale… one which doesn’t bludgeon you over the head with messages and themes, but instead invites you to set back and enjoy the ride.

Renegades Origins T-Shirts

Renegades: Origins Anubus shirt.  Get yours today!
Renegades: Origins Anubus shirt. Get yours today!

Hi, everyone.  Another quick post, because this month is a busy one for me.  I’m announcing that I’ll be releasing Renegades: Origins themed T-shirts.  Starting off with everyone’s favorite furry psychopath: Anubus.  Each shirt is made from premium gray cotton and features a quote from the character, in this case, Anubus.  I’m very much looking for feedback on these, so if you want artwork, logos, or a quote from a favorite character, let me know!

For now, the only way to get one is to directly contact me (PM on Facebook is preferred), although I’ll also bring a few to conventions I’ll be attending (right now, that’s Liberty Con and Dragon Con later this year).  I have a small number to gauge interest, sizes  S, M, L, and XL (I can order larger sizes, other colors, and female cuts, but it will take me a bit longer to get those to you).   Anubus’s shirt is featured to the side, so check it out, and if you want one, once again, message me on FB!

See Kal Run… American Ninja Warrior!

Kal Spriggs at American Ninja Warrior, 2015 San Pedro
Kal Spriggs at American Ninja Warrior, 2015 San Pedro

Yes, you read that headline right… I’ve just come back from the show American Ninja Warrior, specifically the Military Special in San Pedro, California.  While I can’t say anything about how I did, I will say I had an incredible time and if you want to watch me and a ton of other military veterans compete, be sure to watch it later this month!

I’ve been training hard for it over the past few months, so be sure to tune in and watch to see how I did.  While I was there, I met some amazing people with inspirational stories and incredible attitudes.  I’m sure the show will do them all justice.  Be certain to tune in and watch it!  While I don’t have the exact air date, yet, it will probably be Monday the 29th of June.