Anthologies are like a box of chocolates

AnthologyLate last year, I was honored to be asked to participate in an anthology called From the Indie Side, featuring some of the best indie writers on the planet.

I’ve thoroughly enjoyed getting to know these writers as we’ve corresponded on various aspects of our stories.

Indie writing is exciting. Traditional publishing is a long, slow road to trudge, with no guarantee of results. Indie publishing holds no promise of success, but it is astonishingly quick, and yet that speed needs to be tempered with patience to ensure quality.

This anthology has been edited by Hugh Howey‘s editor David Gatewood to ensure the quality of stories is top notch. The cover design is by Jason Gurley.

For me, indie publishing has offered an avenue for growth as a writer that I would not have had in a traditional publishing environment, so I’m proud to be an indie and excited to contribute to this anthology.

Anthologies are like a box of chocolates. You get to sample a wide variety of stories in a wonderfully condense format and discover new authors you can explore.


If you like quirky short stories on a variety of subjects, you’ll love From the Indie Side. It’s got something for everyone.

Here’s the synopsis of each story.

The Winter Lands (Jason Gurley)

Jonathan Froestt lives alone in a retirement home. His family is gone. His friends are all dead. For over sixty years, he has been writing a novel, the pages collecting in his apartment in stacks. Nobody has ever read it. Until today.

Going Gray (Brian Spangler)

When their community is engulfed by a deadly, caustic fog, sixteen-year-old Emily and her family decide to escape to the one building they can think of that might be able to withstand the fog’s corrosive force: the shopping mall. But a trip to the mall has never been so desperate, or so terrifying.

Queen Joanna (Kate Danley)

Thrust into a loveless marriage of state, Queen Joanna soon discovers her new palace is home to many dark secrets. And when a face in the mirror confronts her with a dire warning, she realizes her life is at risk. Has she awakened a curse—or been struck by madness? “Queen Joanna” presents a haunting twist on the legend of Bloody Mary.

Mouth Breathers (Hugh Howey)

Moving to a new town, starting off at a new school, meeting new kids… it’s never easy. And it only gets harder when the new town and the new school and the new kids are on a different planet. But sometimes, something happens that makes it worth all the trouble.

The Man With Two Legs (Ernie Lindsey)

Many winters ago, the man with two legs managed to escape the oppressive maiming rituals of Tritan’s government. Now he stands on a hillside overlooking the city, a bomb in his rucksack, determined to bring about two impossible results: his mother’s rescue and freedom for his people.

Cipher (Sara Foster)

When Beatrice leaves her family behind to visit her father, she never imagines she might not see them again. But then a bomb goes off close to home, and Beatrice must rely on a stranger’s help to find out what’s happened—and whether or not her husband and children have survived.

Made of Stars (Anne Frasier)

A genius vampire named Sinclair creates an alternate world where vampires can experience a traditional human life of love, marriage, and children. Sixteen-year-old Gabriel is Sinclair’s beta tester and volunteers to fall in love with a coffee-shop girl. But when the pain of love becomes overwhelming, Gabriel questions his decision. “It’s too real,” he tells Sinclair. “You made it too real.”

Gyre-Witchery (Kev Heritage)

All Tam wanted was to be loved. Was that so hard? Made outcast because of her green eyes—the sign of witchery—Tamina, a well-meaning simpleton, is shunned by a superstitious people who blame her for the ills that have overtaken their small island. It was not her fault that she put on weight while the others starved, or that wild animals slunk at her side, or that men and women both desired and despised her. But change was coming, brought upon the back of a terrifying squall…

The War Veteran (Susan May)

For seventy years, World War II veteran Jack Baker has endured vivid flashbacks to that horrific June day on Omaha Beach. But tonight, the flashback will be terrifyingly different. Tonight it becomes real. Tonight, Jack’s seventy-year-old secret will come back to claim him.

The Greater Good (Mel Hearse)

When Lanie wakes up in a hospital bed with no idea how she got there, she tries desperately to work out why she was on the old loop road that’s been all but abandoned by the locals. Thinking there must be an obvious answer, Lanie leaves no stone unturned in her quest for an explanation. But when all is revealed, she is left with only one question—and no good answers.

REDOUBT (Michael Bunker)

Phillip is a militia commander who has planned for a decade to defend the pacifist Vallenses of Central Texas with his army if ever the world tips over and goes to hell. He never thought he’d be on a skiing trip to New Mexico when the end comes.

The Man Who Remembered Today (Peter Cawdron)

Kareem wakes with a headache. A bloody bandage wrapped around his head tells him this isn’t just another day in the Big Apple. The problem is, he can’t remember what happened to him. He can’t recall anything from yesterday. The only memories he has are from events that are about to unfold today, and today is no ordinary day.

From the Indie Side is available on Amazon

and from Barnes and Noble

and on Kobo 

sunrise-thank you

7 thoughts on “Anthologies are like a box of chocolates

  1. Any hints for those who are writing their very first novel? I finally got the guts to get start and I’m stuck on my first draft (a third of the way) due to a lack of point of view. I already got the whole story ready, but that chapter is holding me back. I realized before taht part, words flow easily. If M$ speech program recognized my accent I would likely take a third of the time to get it done.

    Also, how different is indie from traditional publishing? I know on the latter I have to get a lit agent or go straight to publishers and hope someone gets interested. If those fail, how do I get started as indie?

    • Writing a novel is like running a marathon – you can’t just throw on a pair of sneakers and run out the door. It takes considerable effort, but it is do-able if you build up to it. Like a marathon, you’ll “hit the wall” at least once or twice in the process, but hang in there.

      Have a read of “FAVORITE POSTS FOR WRITERS” on he’s got some great tips for Indies

      • Thanks. I’ll have a look at it today. I started to write back in November, but only until early this year I picked up fast… up until the bloody chapter. It’s a slow process with reasearch and character planning and writing an early summary. It didn’t felt like a “wall”, it was more like falling in a manhole.

      • No guts, no glory… that’ll be a great addition to help me write, thanks. I’ll take the indie path first. I’m insane since i got a 9 part story that reverses some sci-fi concepts. If I’m luck, I should have it on Amazon by mid year (third world nations have a way of slowing down procedures like ISBN and copyright). Been wanting to write since I was in seventh grade, I’m not stopping now.

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