PROJECT UPDATE – IF WE HAD KNOWN


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edited by Mike McPhail

Beyond the Cradle of mankind, the universe is vast, unknown,
dangerous to the unwary…or those caught in the path of intrepid explorers proceeding without forethought.

Thirteen authors explore what it is to pioneer the future with tales fraught with danger and remorse, tempered with hope, luck, and serendipity. We face the monsters. We face the truth. We face ourselves.

Whether the frontier is that of science or space, there is no doubt that at some point one must ask …If we had known, would we have followed this course?


Contents

The Necessary Enemy by Ian Randal Strock

The Steady Drone of Silence by Danielle Ackley-McPhail

The Last Man on Earth by Jody Lynn Nye

Chasing the Ball by Peter Prellwitz

The Janus Choice by Jeff Young

Between Scylla and Charybdis by Patrick Thomas

The Star Gazers by James Chambers

Giraffe Children by Robert E. Waters

Good Advice by John L. French

Egg by Christopher M. Hiles

Youth by Judi Fleming

Meeting the Other by Nancy Jane Moore

The Third Heaven by Robert Greenberger

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COVER REVEAL – IF WE HAD KNOWN


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Edited by Mike McPhail, with stories by Jody Lynn Nye, Nancy Jane Moore, James Chambers, Jeff Young, Peter Prellwitz, Patrick Thomas, Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Judi Fleming, John L. French, Christopher M. Hiles, and Robert E. Waters.

GOODREADS GIVEAWAY – MAN AND MACHINE


It’s that time again, where you get a chance to win a free copy of one of our books. This time Man and Machine (Defending the Future book 7) edited by Mike McPhail.


mam-proof-finalThe plan had been to un-man the battlespace; replacing flesh and blood with steel and carbon fiber. Machines, both remote-guided and autonomous, would fight and be destroyed in the name of freedom, sparing the troops. However, as with all arms races, the opposing side’s technology eventually catches ups to yours, resulting in the need to put lives back on the frontline to deal with the unknown.

Gear up! This fight is far from over in 14 new stories of the struggle to survive, the new machines of war.

With stories by Bud Sparhawk, Jennifer Brozek, Ronald Garner, Aaron Rosenberg, Brenda Cooper, James Chambers, Nancy Jane Moore, Patrick Thomas, Jeff Young, Eric Hardenbrook, Robert E. Waters, Anton Kukal, and Danielle Ackley-McPhail.

COVER REVEAL – MAN AND MACHINE


We are excited to present to you the cover of Man and Machine, Defending the Future Volume 7. After a three-year hiatus, editor Mike McPhail has given us another great volume for your reading enjoyment, featuring series veterans Brenda Cooper, Bud Sparhawk, Jennifer Brozek, James Chambers, Patrick Thomas, Jeff Young, Robert E. Waters, Eric Hardenbrook, Nancy Jane Moore, Judi Fleming, and Danielle Ackley-McPhail, plus our newest recruits: Ronald T. Garner, Aaron Rosenberg, and Anton Kukal.

In addition, the collection contains a final farewell from CJ Henderson, written just before his passing, about his participation in the Defending the Future Series.


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Back Cover Copy

The plan had been to un-man the battlespace, replacing flesh and blood with steel and carbon fiber. Machines, both remote-controlled and autonomous A.I.s, would fight and be destroyed in the name of freedom; sparing the troops at the cost of the nation’s treasure.

However, as with any arms race, the opposing side’s technology eventually catches ups to yours, resulting in the need to put lives back in harm’s way on the frontline; to deal with, and adapt to the unknown, as only humans can.

 

PROJECT UPDATE – THE BEST OF DEFENDING THE FUTURE


 

As a part of our Man and Machine campaign we were fortunate enough to also fund a Best of collection. We have made our final determinations and are proud to share with you the following:

The embers of war still glow as memories of strange skies over an alien landscape, light-years from home, bring back the sensations of battle; a time when personal sacrifice meant the difference between salvation for all, or total destruction.  

Gathered here is a cross-section of stories from the first decade of the Defending The Future series. Written by the known and up-and-coming in the military science fiction genre, these stories represent the fan-requested highlights from the series.

DRUM ROLL….

And now, we are excited to announce the stories selected for The Best of Defending The Future, in no particular order.

From Breach the Hull  

  • Jack McDevitt – Black to Move  
  • John C. Wright – Peter Power Armor  
  • Lawrence M. Schoen – Thresher  
  • Jeffrey Lyman – Compartment Alpha  

From So It Begins  

  • Andy Remic – Junked  
  • Danielle Ackley-McPhail – First Line  
  • Charles E. Gannon – To Spec  
  • Bud Sparhawk – The Glass Box  
  • CJ Henderson – Everything’s Better with Monkeys  

From By Other Means  

  • James Chambers – Mother of Peace  
  • Jeff Young – Blankets  
  • Mike McPhail – Sheepdog  
  • John G. Hemry – Dawn’s Last Light  
  • Robert E. Waters – Devil Dancer  

From No Man’s Land  

  • Nancy Jane Moore – Gambit  
  • Maria V. Snyder – Godzilla Warfare  
  • Brenda Cooper – Cracking the Sky  

From Best Laid Plans  

  • Keith R.A. DeCandido – The Stone of the First High Pontiff  
  • David Sherman – Chitter Chitter Bang Bang  
  • Judi Fleming – Iron Horses

COMING NEXT…

As a company we cut our teeth on anthologies. Now we are ready to graduate to something more meaty. Our next campaign begins Monday and we are really excited about it. 

>This one is for two original novels: The Sister Paradox, a fantasy offering by Jack Campbell; and POST, a science fiction dystopia novel by Brenda Cooper. You can check out the campaign in advance at http://tiny.cc/Novels2016.

FROM OUR FRIENDS…

Finally, for those who haven’t heard yet, Joshua Palmatier of Zombies Need Brains started a new campaign yesterday. This one is for three anthologies, about Robots, Water, and Death. Check it out here: http://kck.st/2craV5X. One day in and they are a third of the way there. There are some really awesome authors involved, like Jody Lynn Nye, Faith Hunter, Gini Koch, Misty Massey and Rosemary Edgehill, just to name a few.

Have a good night and enjoy your weekend. Me, I’m off to Star Trek Mission New York at the Javits Center. If by chance you happen to be there a well, come say Hi! I’ll be at the Quidd booth, which is #331.

Best,
Danielle

LAUNCH PARTY UPDATE – THE PRIZES #8


For those who missed our earlier posts, Gaslight & Grimm will be launching at Balticon 50 this year, along with our other three anthologies: The Side of Good/The Side of Evil, The Weird Wild West, and Dogs of War – Reissue.

The convention has moved back to Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, at the Renaissance Hotel, over Memorial Day Weekend. The launch party will be the Sunday of the convention.

  • Where: MD Salon B (The New Garden Room)
  • When: Sunday, May 29th
  • Time: 7pm to 9pm

Our Final Batch of Featured Prizes

These are some of our contributor prizes. The books are donated by their respective authors: Kelly A. Harmon (Gaslight and Grimm) Jean Marie Ward (Gaslight and Grimm) and James Chambers (The Side of Good/The Side of Evil, and Gaslight and Grimm); the Fairy Catmother tote bag (x2) is donated by Gaslight and Grimm editor and contributor Diana Bastine; and  the amazing steampunk snowman is both created and donated by Dogs of War contributor Judi Fleming of Fleming Gourds. 

I expect there will be other prizes I haven’t cataloged, but hey…you get the idea 😉

So remember, it’s all fun and games…until someone else wins the prize! Don’t let that happen to you. Join us at the launch for your chances to win!

How it Works

Just a note on how you can win said prizes. At any event where we are holding a launch party we have a standing practice that whoever buys one of the books launching gets a free raffle ticket for each one. Once you have a free ticket, if you wish you can purchase additional tickets for $1 each, all the way up until the drawing. Once you arrive at the party you can peruse the prize table and see if any of them interest you. At that point you take your two-part raffle ticket and separate the perforated sides. You put one half of the ticket in the bin in front of the prize you want to win, the other half you put back in your pocket until it is time for the drawing. No need to put your name on either half of the ticket because you–or someone representing you–must be present at the time of the drawing to collect your prize.

NEW RELEASE – DOGS OF WAR


eSpec Books and editor Mike McPhail are proud to announce the reissue of Dogs of War, volume 6 in the award-winning Defending the Future Anthology series. While this is the only existing book in the series that will be reissued, there will be a Best Of collection highlighting stories from the previous five volumes, and future volumes are in the works, including DTF 7: Man and Machine, which will be launching via Kickstarter later this month.

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BACK COVER COPY

Animals have fought for us for centuries, not because of the ideals of service to King and Country, but out of unwavering loyalty and devotion to their human Masters.

The future, it would seem, is no better than the past, as some animals become expendable weapons or augmented semi-machines, while others receive the honor and dignity of being treated as fellow soldiers.

In tribute, we bring you seventeen stories of our animal comrades-in-arms.

Includes stories by Brenda Cooper, David Sherman, Bud Sparhawk, Eric V. Hardenbrook, James Chambers, Peter Prellwitz, Janine K. Spendlove, Judi Fleming, Tony Ruggiero, Edward J. McFadden III, Vonnie Winslow Crist, Patrick Thomas, Jeff Young, CJ Henderson, Robert E. Waters, Christopher M. Hiles, and Danielle Ackley-McPhail.

The Kindle edition is currently available on Amazon, with the print book soon to follow.