“Way back in 2015, I was commissioned to write a story for a forthcoming comic book format sci-fi website. Alas, the website never came to fruition, and I was left with an orphaned story, a story with no home, a story no one would get to read.
I thoroughly enjoyed creating Mechanical Mike and could not allow it to languish, unloved and unread, in the dusty archives of my computer. So, I took Mechanical Mike from the files, dusted him down, and carefully re-wrote the story.
The result is this Novelette, available as an eBook, or a Paperback Pocketbook.
This is a fun story, a modern pulp fictional tale of a ‘gum-shoe’ style detective, a beautiful blond ‘bombshell’ of a girl, a mad scientist, robots, and evil Nazis, all in occupied France during WW2.
What some readers say…
I can imagine Paul White had a load of fun writing Mechanical Mike. It’s a bit like sci-fi in drag… well a mix between that and a thriller.
Add in loads of World War 2 action, the Nazis with a devious plan to win the war – that’s enough from me – you need to read it.
I loved it.
Author Paul White has blended the history of war films, Nazis, World War 2, and Pulp fiction. It is an extremely fast-paced story that skillfully mixes a wide range of genres, including Romance, War, and Thrillers.
The title, the book cover, the colours and design, along with the language used, is very well balanced, making it a great all-rounder.
Pardon me for not sharing the story here, I believe it would diminish the effort of the writer to entertainingly mesmerize his audience… that’s gotta be you too.
I would love to see this book made into a movie.
What a great fun read. It is exactly what you glean from the cover… and more.
Pure pulp-fiction/comic book meets sci-fi adventure, war-time romance.
I mean, what other read has robots, a mad scientist, Nazi soldiers, a beautiful girl, and lots of action in Paris, France, during WWII?
This is a true must-read for those who want to be excitedly entertained.
Road Rage is a fast-paced dark MC romance with plenty of murder, mischief, and mayhem, from Karina Kantas. (18+)
Beautiful and scarred, Gem works in a supermarket living the safe life she has chosen after surviving a violent past running with an outlaw motorcycle club. Excitement beckons in the form of a handsome biker named Shep, who introduces her to the rest of his legit racing club, Rage.
However, members of Rage won’t accept Gem until she’s proven herself, and Shep sees her as no more than a trophy for his drugged-up ego.
Gem makes the mistake of getting involved in Rage’s illegal activities, which lands her back in the arms of an outlaw motorcycle club and a deadly conclusion.
I shifted in my chair. I wasn’t ready for an interrogation, but I understood their need for answers.
The first round of questions they fired at me were routine: family, school background, and employment record. Then they asked me what bikes I’d owned or ridden.
“I had a Yamaha 125 at college, and then I owned a Harley Softail Crossbones,” I answered.
They didn’t look too surprised when I mentioned the Harley Davidson.
“I can handle any bike from a 125 up to 1000. As you know, I have a Suzuki GSX R600, and a Kawasaki 250, but would I’d like to own, if I ever win the lottery, is a Ducati.” I grinned but it wasn’t returned.
I knew what the next question was going to be, and my mouth dried up at the prospect of answering it.
“Have you ever been a member of any other motorcycle club?” Turbo asked.
This was a part of my past that I hoped to forget. I stared into Turbo’s face. I saw Doc nod, urging me to answer.
“Yes. I used to ride with the Hawks.”
The name was not unknown to them. Blade’s eyes lit. Doc smiled, but Turbo and Gbh looked uncomfortable with the news.
“How long were you a member?” Turbo asked.
“Three years. Listen, mind if I smoke?”
“Go ahead,” Blade answered.
I pulled the packet of cigarettes out of my jacket pocket. My hands were shaking. I hoped the others didn’t notice. I cupped my hands and lit my cigarette, inhaling deeply, glad for the burning taste.
“Do you still associate with them?” Gbh asked.
I shook my head. “No, I haven’t seen a Hawk since I left the club a year and a half ago.”
The chapter of the Hawks I used to run with was based in the South. I made sure our paths didn’t cross.
“And you were a full patch?” Pat asked.
“Women aren’t allowed to wear the wings, but I had the Lady tag, so yes, I was a full member.”
“So, you were involved with their illegal activities?” Blade asked, leaning forward in anticipation of my answer.
“I was involved, yes,” I answered defensively. “Look, that was a long time ago. I’m out of the game now. You needn’t worry about the Hawks.”
“We’re not worried,” Gbh growled.
“I want a copy of your birth certificate and driving license to me by the end of this weekend,” Blade said.
“Okay.” I reached over and took the book Doc was holding out to me.
“Here’s our code. Read it, memorize it then give it back to me next week,” he said.
I was surprised Rage had a code. The Hawks had their own rules of conduct and such, but they were a seventy full-patched member club. Rage had seventeen fully patched members, so I was interested to see what their club rules were.
What Road Rage readers say about the book…
“The story in this book draws you in, entwining you with the characters as each page is read. It is detailed and colorfully twisted to keep you on the edge of your seat. You really feel the pain of the main character and it envelopes you with emotion, as you hang on to every last word. I enjoyed this book very much and recommend it to everyone looking for an exciting story…looking forward to reading many more.”
“The MC genre is my favorite and Karina Kantas definitely did not disappoint me! The well-written storyline and the well-developed characters just drew me in from the very beginning until I turned the very last page. I loved how Gem and Doc’s relationship developed over time since I was rooting for them from the first time Doc was introduced into the story!”
“If you love MC books you’ll fall in love with this one, the characters, the storyline, and you won’t want to put this book down. Absolutely loved it.”
Karina Kantas is an award-winning author and filmmaker.
Karina is a prolific writer with 14 titles that cover the fiction genres of YA, horror, PNR, fantasy, sci-fi, dystopian, dark mafia romance, thriller, erotica, supernatural, dark MC romance.
When Karina is not working on a novel, she loves writing dark flash fiction.
Karina is an Electric Eclectic author, a podcaster, Booktuber, YouTuber, and radio host, and runs ‘Author Assist’, offering services and training to debut and established authors.
Despite shops being closed for much of 2020, figures show Britons bought books in volume – although many authors continued to struggle.
More than 200m print books were sold in the UK last year, the first time since 2012 that number has been exceeded, according to an estimate from official book sales monitor Nielsen BookScan.
Although physical ‘bricks & mortar’ bookshops in England were closed from 23 March until 15 June, and then again from 5 November until 2 December, with differing lockdowns in place around the rest of the UK – Nielsen has estimated that the volume of print books sold grew by 5.2% compared with 2019. This equates to 202m books being sold in the UK last year and was worth £1.76bn, up 5.5% on 2019, said Nielsen.
Waterstones, Kate Skipper called the figures encouraging. “So many people have turned to books for sustenance, information and joy through this difficult year.”
Physical retail and online retail have taken dramatically different paths during the pandemic. Well-established chains like Brooks Brothers, GNC, J. Crew, and Neiman Marcus have all made Chapter 11 filings, while Amazon, eBay, Walmart, and Target reported record sales.
While book publishing, generally, has performed strongly thus far during the pandemic, bookstores have not.
Despite much positive news around publisher net sales, the U.S. Census data show that bookstore sales declined 28.8% in October 2020 vs. 2019 and 31% YTD.
Through the summer of 2020, Barnes & Noble, like most independent booksellers, balanced opening restrictions against offering online order pickup and greatly expanded online sales. By late fall, cafe and magazine newsstand sales were still down significantly, but book sales were running ahead of a year ago, aided by a doubling in online sales.
COVID-19′s impact on publishing sales and the supply chain has been less than many feared it would be. Whatever doom and gloom surround the publishing industry during the COVID crisis, sales cannot be singled out for scorn. Trade sales in 2020 were almost uniformly ahead of 2019, and in several categories, unit sales were up over 20% through mid-December.
The ebook format has been to some extent reborn during the pandemic, recovering from shrinking percentages of overall sales, and publisher disdain for the format.
After years of spectacular sales growth, audiobook sales growth slowed significantly in 2019: 16.4% versus 34.7% in 2018, based on data from the Audio Publishers Association (APA). NPD Group reported that unit digital audiobook sales were up 15% through May 2020. The AAP calculated that downloaded audio sales were up 17.3% to the end of October.
In the library market, Overdrive, which had been seeing year-over-year growth in audiobooks, saw depressed audiobook adoption in the pandemic. A possible reason cited by the company: commuters who had been listening to books in the car (or on mass transit) were no longer going into the office.
ELECTRIC ECLECTIC asks…
Overall, the numbers are positive for audio; only the pace of growth is slowing.
Podcast consumption offers an interesting perspective on this data.
Spotify reported in July that in its second-quarter 21% of users were listening to podcasts, up from 19% in Q1. Overall consumption of podcasts more than doubled.
Podtrac recorded 47% download growth for the 52 weeks ending November 01, 2020.
Are these listeners being lured away from audiobooks? Or are podcasts just part of an overall burgeoning audio trend?
The pandemic has had an enormous impact on how publishing companies are staffed and how staff execute their work. And, by all accounts, that impact may mark a permanent shift in publishing workflows.
In early August, Penguin Random House confirmed it will not return to its offices “until sometime in 2021… or until it’s safe and it’s practical, whenever that may be.”
Also in August, Hachette CEO Michael Pietsch sent out a note that “we will not be requiring anyone whose work can be done remotely to return to any of our offices for the foreseeable future.”
Overall retail sales changed only slightly in 2020, but there were huge swings month-to-month. April sales were down 14.7% from March but were followed by an 18.3% jump in May. November retail sales dropped 1.1% from October but were up 4.1% from November 2019.
Book retail is a set of businesses. First, it’s both physical and digital. More than half of all book retail takes place online (with Amazon accounting for at least half of those sales). Physical retail, on its own, has several components, broadly speaking: chain bookstores, independent bookstores, big-box retailers like Costco, and “newsstands” at drug and grocery stores, airport stores, etc.
Then there is digital, capturing more than 10% of most book publisher sales, and the vast majority of self-publishing sales. Amazon controls at least three-quarters of that market.
The changes in the retail landscape speak volumes. (Pun intended).
On the one hand, from now on publishers must treat bookselling as online- and digital-first, physical-second, with no further questions asked.
Pre-COVID it was still valid for publishers to ponder “where does Amazon fit within our reseller channel strategy?”
The question henceforth is “how do our reselling channels align with an online-first strategy (particularly for Amazon)?”
…And the mouse in the corner might be heard to squeak “and what should we do about the bookstores?”
Although the sudden pandemic-driven shifts may slow or revert toward the mean with the achievement of a “new normal,” we believe that important underlying changes will persist and continue to evolve.
Each year on August 25t, people across the United States observe National Whiskey Sour Day.
Traditionally garnished with half an orange and a maraschino cherry, a whiskey sour is a mixed drink containing whiskey (often bourbon), lemon juice and sugar. Whiskey sours are shaken then either served straight or over ice.
An alternative to the traditional whiskey sour is the Boston sour which is made by adding a dash of egg white to the recipe. Another variation is the Ward 8. This beverage has a base of either Bourbon or rye whiskey with both lemon and orange juices and grenadine syrup added for sweetness.
The first mention of a whiskey sour was in an 1870 Wisconsin newspaper.
After opening, a bottle of whiskey will remain good for five years.
An unopened bottle of whiskey can be kept for over 100 years and will still be fit to drink.
Both “Whisky” and “Whiskey” spellings are correct. Whisky is specific to Scotch Whisky, and Whiskey is Irish.
Whiskey is the official state beverage of Alabama.
Legend has it that Jack Daniels ran away at the age of 6 and learned to make whiskey from a Lutheran minister.
For more information and how to observe the day, click here.
Our author C. A. Keith is a whiskey connoisseur, and one day wrote a short story all about it. This appeared in our anthology. Mayfly. This is free to download from all retailers, except Amazon. Click on the book cover for the link.
We are pleased to announce the winning authors of the Electric Eclectic Novella Fiction Prize.
The levels of entries were outstanding. Our judges, who ‘blind-read’ each manuscript had a most difficult task in selecting the winners.
After much lip chewing, hair pulling, and brainstorming we managed to select a shortlist, and then whittle the submissions down to the final three.
1st Place, Stevie Turner with, ‘Scam!’
Runner-up, Jonathan Koven, with, ‘Below Torrential Hill’
Runner-up, Phillip T Stephens with, ‘Doublemint Gumshoe’
The above stories are now in the process of becoming Electric Eclectic books.
Lauren West and Ben Hughes are saving frantically for their forthcoming marriage and mortgage deposit. When Lauren sees an advert online from a firm of brokers extolling the profits to be gained by buying and selling Bitcoins, she is interested enough to pursue it further.
Lauren clicks on the advert. She is soon contacted by Paul Cash, a knowledgeable stockbroker whom Lauren trusts straight away. He is affable, plausible, and seemingly genuinely interested in her welfare. Lauren looks forward to making enough money to be able to surprise Ben and bring the date of their wedding forward and to put a deposit down on their ideal house.
However, things don’t go quite to plan, as Lauren falls victim to a scam and loses £10,000 of their savings. Ben is furious. Paul Cash threatens their safety, and Lauren must try and get her marriage back on an even footing if she wants to win back Ben’s trust.
(To be published by Crimson Cloak Publishing for Electric Eclectic)
Below Torrential Hill
Tristen’s abusive father dies when Tristan is young: a suicide. Tristen’s mother, Lucy, copes with alcohol, occasionally violent. Tristen grows up, ignorant to his father’s abuse, substituting for an ill-equipped mother. Stepfather Lave moves out.
When Tristen is sixteen years old. A comet appears.
Lucy hears voices calling from the sink. Tristen steals his mother’s wine and leaves to a neighbourhood party, blacks-out, and argues with his friend Ava.
He chops a Christmas tree in the woods which his father frequented. After a disastrous visit from his stepfather, an argument ensues, and Tristen is assaulted by his mother.
Tristen gets far too drunk, scaring Ava. She manages to calm his temper and gifts him a marijuana joint.
Lucy discovers Tristen’s theft and reveals to him his father’s abuse, asking him to help her.
But he runs into the woods, falling off a cliff, just as his late father did. Tristen discovers a fallen meteorite. When he touches it, he experiences an epiphany about forgiveness.
Doublemint Gumshoe pits the world’s dimmest detective against its most advanced AI.
When a nano robotics engineer who moonlights as a nude model vanishes from her hotel room leaving nothing but empty gum wrappers, Detective Bob takes the case. But Bob has never closed a case in his long career, and the citizens of San Noema conspire to stop him from solving this one.
Pitted against a dying mob boss, a corporation with wide-reaching tentacles, a ruthless cyber gang, his own family (whose nepotism secured his job), a jealous girlfriend, aliens, competing narrators, and possibly an evil AI from the future, Bob is determined to find the missing girl who has captured his heart, and do it in fewer than 30,000 words. Gumshoe takes readers on a supercollider ride, sending up Thomas Pynchon, Kurt Vonnegut, conspiracy theories, postmodernism, and even the movie Chinatown.
All of us here, at Electric Eclectic, congratulate the competition winners and eagerly await the publication of their books.
You can find more Electric Eclectic books by simply typing ‘Electric Eclectic Books’ into your Amazon search bar, or by visiting @open24, the amazon store for readers & writers, http://bit.ly/EEbooksonOPEN24
Karina is an indie author, and an Electric Eclectic author. As the principle of Author Assist, Karina has been helping indie authors and writers improve there working methods and successfully promote their books since 2015.
Here, Karina gives us a quick but extremely useful method for organising our often confused and untidy working methods.
This was first posted on Karina's own blog, Karina's Korner
As author’s we have links coming out of our ears.
Links to books, SMP (social media platforms) mailing list sign up, all the FaceBook groups etc. So, how do you remember them all?
Do you have a book with them all in, then go hunting every time you need to find a book link?
No, you keep them all in one place, where you and the public can find them.
You need to utilize every part of your FaceBook page, so let’s start with the banner on your private FaceBook page.
Click on your banner and you have a single place where you can add all your links and can add and add and edit anytime.
NOTE TO REMEMBER: Ensure you copy and paste all of your links into a post on your page a change the setting from ‘public’ to ‘only me’. See below. Then save the post BEFORE you change your banner.
Karina Kantas has been assisting authors and writers through Author Assist since 2015, from where she offers affordable assist services
Publisher: Asteri Press imprint of Bolide publishing
Cover designer: Sharon Lipman from Fantasia Cover Designs
Editors: Michelle Dunbar, Anna Proofing, and Black Cat Edits
Nobody expects to stare death in the face, only to find out their entire life is a lie.
When marketing executive Becky is saved from near-death by Salco, she is taken to Tsinia, a magical world filled with peaceful people who are trying to forget their land is on the brink of destruction.
Becky discovers that her arrival is no accident and that she is Thya, the heir to the enchanting land. As if that isn’t enough, she learns that an Oracle prophesied that she will save the gentle Tsinians from slavery and domination by Darthorn, the Warlord of Senx.
The Tsinian council and her kinsmen are certain that a union between Darthorn’s son, Kovon, and Thya will create peace between the two lands. However, Darthorn has plans for Tsinia, as does Kovon for Thya.
Her future has been written, and, if she is to save Tsinia, she must marry Kovon, but Thya gives her heart to another – a love that is both forbidden and dangerous.
Illusional Reality is a story about hope, courage, love, and sacrifice.
The cool air refreshed her, and she was soon wide awake. Alkazar brought a seat out from the room and asked her to sit.
“As I was trying to convey to you, the gift you possess is named Flite. You have the ability to move objects with your mind. All Ganties possess this gift, and tis my pleasured duty to tutor you in the employment of your talents. To move an object, you are required to reach the Owto, a place between conscious and unconscious.”
“Sort of like a trance?”
“Similar to a hypnotic state,” he answered. “You ought to be aware of things around you and pay attention to conversations, yet you need to be able to detach yourself from reality so you can concentrate on what you desire. It is rather like splitting your mind in two.”
Alkazar laughed. “It can be. It depends on how receptive you are. Let us attempt?”
“Sure, what have I got to lose?”
“Start by relaxing your body. Close your mind and relax in the chair; feel your body loosen. When you think you cannot go further, push your body deeper.” He saw Thya push herself back into the chair. “Employ only your thoughts. Do not employ your physical being.” Thya relaxed once again. “Better. Melt into the chair. Become one with the wood. Breathe deeply. Inhale through your nose, and exhale through your mouth. That’s it. Keep breathing deeper. Good. You ought to feel as though you are drifting.” Thya nodded slightly. “I require you to imagine space as you understand it to be: be darkness all around you, apart from the stars and planets surrounding your view. You are alone, moving through space, drifting. Detach your mind and focus on the darkness – on the silence. Concentrate, Thya.” He paused for a moment. “The stars and planets are fading, and there is naught but utter darkness. Still, you move through the blackness.”
Thya was coming to the crucial part. Alkazar moved closer. He lifted one of her eyelids and saw her pupil was stationary and her breathing steady. Both were good signs. Just for a moment, he felt the urge to lean in and kiss her but pushed the thought aside. He scolded himself. He was supposed to be teaching her how to concentrate yet struggled with his own.
“Continue moving through the darkness,” he continued. “Soon, you will come to a suspended door. Tis grey in colour. When you arrive, grasp the handle until I instruct you to –”
“I sight the door,” Thya called out.
“Continue to grasp the handle. When I command you to unlock it, I want you to open your eyes. Are you prepared?”
“I am,” she answered.
Thya opened her eyes, blinked twice, and then smiled at him. “So, how did I do?”
Alkazar wasn’t surprised she did not reach the Owto; they rarely did on their first arrival at the door. However, he was surprised by how far she had gone.
“Very good. Only you have to concentrate harder. Relate to me, what colour was the door?”
“Umm… a light grey with black marks.”
“You have done well. We will discontinue for the moment. You ought to rest, as you will be tired. I will request that Pertius does not announce himself.”
“Thanks, Alkazar. I do not think I can take any of his talk of doom and gloom.”
Alkazar laughed. “Pertius has much to instruct you about your legacy, the past, and of your future. It does not have to be as doomed as you remark. I am confident that once you have conversed you will find a sudden interest to learn all.”
“If you state so,” she replied casually.
“Rest if you can. However, I declare that after our session your mind will be wandering.” He turned to leave, pausing at the door. “Understand this, Thya. If you ever require me as a friend or as a tutor, you have only to summon and I will attend you. This I vow. For the present, farewell.” He bowed then left.
Download Illusional Reality now for just $0.99/£0.99 and send proof of purchase to firstname.lastname@example.org. You will be entered in the draw for this stunning necklace – identical to the one Thya is given, an heir loom carried through the generations of Ganties, and now it could be yours.
Pre-orders are included in this contest. The prize draw is open internationally. No other prize will be given out.
The winner will be announced in Karina’s newsletter. http://eepurl.com/daKief This contest is run and organised by the author Karina Kantas.
“With most books, you have to back up a page or two. That is something I NEVER had to do with this one! It is well written and captures the imagination, guiding you into the new land and language with such easy grace that you hardly are aware of it.”
“This is a unique story filled with intrigue, deception and danger. As you read along so much unfolds.”
“The detailed descriptions let me see the magical land of Tsinia, with it’s tree-top dwellings and it’s friendly and peaceful inhabitants. Senx, the home of her ‘intended’, Kovon and his father, Darthorn, is a much darker and gloomier place.”
“Karina sets up some great and compelling characters. Thya, Alkazar, Omad, Kazer, Kovon, Siren are all intriguing for their own reasons. We love them, we hate them. I’ll let you make your own opinions. This truly is a fantastical world with magical gifts, a reluctant princess, an angry warlord and oracles, and contains lots of espionage, treachery, suspense with a bit of romance thrown in.”
“What a delightfully touching love story! Our author entwined our world with a fantasy one with action, magic and of course, love.”
Karina Kantas was born in the Midlands, UK, and has lived on the island of Corfu for twenty-seven years.
Karina Kantas is an award-winning, prolific author of thirteen titles, including the Outlaw books—the gritty MC thriller series—and the exciting YA fantasy duology, Illusional Reality.
She also writes short stories, and, when her imagination is working overtime, thought-provoking, dark flash fiction.
There are many layers to Karina’s writing style and voice, as you will see in her flash fiction collection, Heads & Tales. In Undressed, she opens up to her fans, giving them another glimpse into her warped mind.
Karina writes in the genres of fantasy, MC romance, young adult. sci-fi, horror, thrillers and comedy, romance, paranormal romance, dystopian, and erotica.
When she’s not working on her new books, she helps her clients by offering affordable Author Services five days week.
Titles To Date
The OUTLAW series – MC thrillers In Times of Violence Huntress Lawless Justice Road Rage
Collections Heads & Tales – mixed genres UNDRESSED – poetry, prose, short fiction mixed genres A Flash of Horror
In Times of Violence Young Adult Edition – MC romance Stone Cold – YA supernatural thriller Toxic – dystopian erotica
Illusional Reality duology Illusional Reality – YA romantic fantasy The Quest/fantasy – YA paranormal romance
WIP Broken Chains (Mafia Romance) currently on Wattpad