Books

The Writer’s Tale: A Love Story

So far my novelist career has been comprised of outrageous science fiction adventures, a mix of screwball comedies and multi-dimensional chaos.

But within those pages … are love stories.

In my scifi backpacking comedy Finders Keepers, Donald and Danielle are newlyweds in Eternity, who, through bizarre machinations, accidentally knock a jar of the Universe’s DNA into the still for  ming Earth.

As these two characters fret about the disaster they’ve caused, they individually go to great lengths to protect the other. As Donald says at one point of Danielle, “She’s not just wife, she’s my girl.” But when he says those things … that’s really me talking about my own wife, Liz.

We’ve been together now for more than 13 years, and have two children together. Yes, she’s the mother of my children and indeed she is my wife. And she’s my girl.

Switching gears to my scifi adventure Crossline, our hero, space pilot Marcus Powell, is displaced into a modern-day, parallel Earth, desperately trying to get back home to his wife and daughter. When he laments his predicament — that he is responsible, at least in part, for his own misfortune — he’s expressing his innate desire to be reunited with his girls. Nothing else to him matters.

When I wrote Crossline, it was always me — as a husband and father — thinking about how I’d feel and act if I was ever separated from my family, and what I’d be willing to do to be reunited with them.

My novels have been described in many ways, but no matter what adjectives one might use, I know that in my writer’s heart, there are love stories within those pages.

 

*Note – this blog was originally posted on the Crazy 8 Press web site: http://www.crazy8press.com/2014/02/17/the-writers-tale-a-love-story/

My New Year’s Resolution – Listen to Hank

When I think back to a year ago — one year ago exactly — I was in a similar, but distinctly different place in the world.

I was geared up, feeling good, had lots of positive mojo going, and beyond work and the family, I knew that 2013 was going to be a huge year for me on the writing front. I knew it in my bones.

I was about to finalize Crossline, my first original novel with Crazy 8 Press, and I was working on the re-launch of my debut novel, Finders Keepers, also with Crazy 8 Press.

And then ……. I got bronchitis. I typically don’t get more than one or two colds a year, but I managed to pick up some super strain from my kids, and I was really sick.

For four. Straight. Months.

Not fun.

Then, the day I finally stopped coughing, and felt good … I got nailed with some wicked stomach virus that wiped me out for three days. Grrrrr.

I ultimately got my health back, and I did, in fact, release both books through Crazy 8 Press, to critical praise. But I was also in the process of selling my apartment in Queens, and buying a house in New Jersey, which also meant packing, and moving, and lawyers, accountants, realtors, plumbers, electricians, painters, and so much more.

By the time 2013 ended, I was simply exhausted.

So what’s my New Year’s Resolution for 2014?

To remain as healthy as I can, to enjoy my new home, and continue to watch my children grow and thrive.

And while I’m at it, keep building the buzz on Crossline and Finders Keepers, do as many signings, and appear at as many cons as I can, and debut the Finders Keepers sequel, which, if all goes well, will be showing up this fall.

Ambitious? Maybe.

But you know what? If all my authordude endeavors weren’t just a little bit, well … crazy, and at least kinda BIG … then it just wouldn’t be any fun, now would it?

Because as my Finders Keepers giver-of-wisdom Hank would say, “If it comes too easy, Kid, it probably ain’t worth doing in the first place. So stop yer belly achin’ and go get it done.”

Thanks for the advice, Hank. I’m doing just that.

My New Year’s Resolution is now officially under way.

 

* Note: This blog originally appeared on the Crazy 8 Press web site at: http://www.crazy8press.com/2014/01/13/my-new-year-resolution-listen-to-hank/

Ingrid Hall Interviews Author Russ Colchamiro

Author Ingrid Hall recently interviewed me on a whole range of topics, including what makes my wacky author brain work. Enjoy …

Hi Russ, lovely to meet you and by the way you have the best website I have seen in ages!! Spill the gossip!!

Hi Ingrid, great to meet you too! Okay. Here goes. I’m 42, married, with two young children and living in the Queens section of New York City, although I’m on the verge of buying a house in New Jersey. I’m a former journalist, now working in public relations for real estate companies. As a fiction writer, I’ve done some comic book scripts and short stories, but now I purely write novels. My debut novel, the raunchy, sci-fi backpacking comedy Finders Keepers, was very well received. Think American Pie/Superbad/Hot Tub Time Machine meets Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. My new book, the mysterious, action-packed space romp Crossline, is getting similar buzz. It’s fun.

Sounds like you are a busy bee and your novels sound like they would be totally up Lenora’s street! So, is writing your full time career?

Not yet, but I’m working on it! I’ve had some Hollywood interest in my projects, but nothing serious to report just yet. Certainly my goal is to write fiction and have that pay for my life.

What is the worst job that you have ever done, and why?

I scrubbed pots in a bakery one summer when I was a teenager. It was hot as hell, it was hard work, it paid lousy, and the owner was kind of a jerk. Other than that I loved it!

We’ve all done jobs like that, it’s a rite of passage! If you could have written any other book by any other author, what would it be, and why?

The Stand by Stephen King.

I am a huge fan of Stephen King, however I have never come across The Stand. I might have to check that one out! How would you think your parents would describe your book? Does this differ from how you would describe it?

Ha! My parents don’t read my books. I think they’re afraid they won’t get them, or won’t like them. That’s okay. I get it.

You’ve already mentioned that you write Sci Fi, do you have any plans to work outside of that genre?

My first few books have been science fiction, with a heavy dose of humor. The next few will remain in that genre. But I have plans down the road to branch out, with a few murder mysteries on the way, and maybe a spy novel, or even a series.

I love it when authors can be versatile! What inspired you to write your first book?

It’s a long story! My first book, Finders Keepers, is loosely based on a series of backpacking trips I took through Europe and New Zealand. Those adventures were not just truly exciting times in my life — and they were — but they helped shaped my perspective in many ways. They had such an impact upon me  me personally that I wanted to capture their spirit — and in some cases, the details — in a way a reading audience could join in, as if it was their journey, too. Separately, I had an idea for this outrageous, comic lunacy-style sci-fi adventure about a jar containing the Universe’s DNA. The two ideas may seem totally isolated unto themselves, but I found that they blended wonderfully into a novel that is fun, funny, and outrageous, but with some real heart to it. I’m actually working on two Finders Keepers sequels, to complete the first trilogy.

I’m definitely hooked! Do you ever get moments, and if so how do you hang onto them?

Definitely. I often get that thunderbolt a-ha! moment where I’ll frantically write ideas down on whatever I can get my hands on. Torn off pages of newspapers, napkins, the inside cover of a book I’m reading. Whatever. As long as I can take the notes. I just never know when or where those kooky ideas will come.

Or when you will use the kooky ideas if you are remotely like me! Do you have a structure when you are writing, and if so what?

I’m very big on getting the ending right. Of course it’s a matter of opinion if I’ve done so, but in my eyes I nailed the ending for both Finders Keepers and Crossline. I also know where the Finders Keepers sequels are headed, and the endings of both books are going to be awesome, if I do say so myself!

What are you reading at the moment, and why?

Finding Meaning in the Second Half of Life, by James Hollis, PhD. It explores some themes that are important to me and I’m also reading some Batman graphic novels, because, you know … Batman is awesome!

What is your favourite movie and why?

Raiders of the Lost Ark. There are many others I love across various genres, but if I only get one movie, it’s Raiders. If there’s more fun to be had at the movies, I haven’t experienced it.

Do you have an opinion on life after death, and if so what?

I believe there’s a force to the Universe far greater than we can understand. We got here somehow! Whether it’s the gods, it’s magic, purely organic, or it’s just part of some wild dream, I’ll probably never know. But there seems to be some connective tissue in the Universe, some energy, that we’re all a part of. So that when our physical bodies die, I think our energies, or soul, drifts into the ether and finds its way … somewhere. As a parent, I want to believe I’ll always be connected with my children, even after we’re done on the Earth, but that could just be wishful thinking. I suppose we all have to move on, sooner or later.

We do and I am a firm believer in the continuation of the soul…Totally changing the subject, when you eat out would you choose Chinese, Indian or Italian, or other, if so what?

Depends upon the specific restaurant, but generally speaking … Chinese. Chicken with Cashews.

London, Paris or New York and why?

I’m a New Yorker, so big love there. I’m a huge fan of London as well. But, Paris? Not so much. We haven’t gotten along too well.

Ah, sounds like there might be a story or two in there somewhere about Paris…What do you have in the pipeline?

I’m halfway through the first of two Finders Keepers sequels. My plan is to write them back-to-back, wrapping up the first trilogy. After that, I have a baseball-themed sci-fi novel in the works, and then we’ll see what I’m in the mood for. My plate is full for the foreseeable future.

Yeah, I have lots of books lined up…It’s just so difficult trying to find the time to write them all! What inspired you to be a writer?

It’s not so much that I’m inspired to write … it’s that I have to write. Have to. It’s who I am. It’s what I do. It’s as essential to my personality as my DNA. That either means I’m really passionate, or crazy. Possibly both.

Do you write poetry or short stories as well? If so what?

I am so bad at poetry. I mean … so bad. It’s embarrassing. I’ve dabbled with short stories, but I have a tough time with them. I tend to write big, so I need more room to explore. Although I’ve written some comic book scripts, and I think I have a good feel for them. I quite like it, and hope to do it again at some point.

I think, poetry is one of those things that you can either do, or not do.  I definitely fit into the cannot do category! How do you overcome writers block?

Step away from the project, and let myself be distracted by something else. Anything that keeps me busy and out of my head. I like to exercise, so that often helps. I’ll watch TV, clean my apartment, go for a walk. Or I’ll just go and break things in frustration. Kidding! But distraction is a great way to get unstuck.

If you only had 60 seconds remaining on this planet, what would you say, and who would you say it to?

I would tell my children that I love them dearly, that I’ll always be with them in one way or another, and that I hope they build a life for themselves that makes them happy. That they should laugh and have as much as fun as possible along the way.

Do you have any pets – If so what?

I was always a cat person, but we’ve had a dog – Simon – for the last four years. He was a rescue. He’s a great dog. A little crazy at times, but a good dog.

Our friends have a dog named Norman, I’ve always found it strange how people give animals “real” name instead of crazy ones…

What advice would you give your 18 year old self?

Ha! Where do I begin? I would encourage my younger self to stay in good physical shape, say yes to many more opportunities, be responsible to myself, my family, my friends, and colleagues, and then make decisions based on what I think is important to me, based on my values, not what others think. And I would encourage my younger self to write every day, no matter what. I would also strongly recommend – if not insist – that I ignore the clerks and bullies of the world. Don’t let those fools get in the way of becoming who you are. To steal a line from Billy Joel as he ends every concert, ‘don’t take any shit from anybody.’ Laugh every day.

Russ, it has been my absolute pleasure meeting you today!

You can check out Russ and his AMAZING website at https://russcolchamiro.com/

This Q&A interview was originally posted at http://www.ingridhall.com/

In the Writer’s Chair: The Jelly Jar Fatality

It began with a jelly jar, and ended with a doorknob.

Okay. So I need you to be with me for a minute.

Being a writer, particularly an author who takes a year or two complete each novel, the research and writing process is predominantly a solitary experience, and one that readers — for the most part — don’t see.

Well … here’s a peak through that window as I look to finish the first Finders Keepers sequel, and my third novel under the Crazy 8 Press banner:

The last few months have been a whirling dervish. I recently sold my apartment in Queens, NY, and, at least for the time being, I’m living in my in-law’s loft in Central New Jersey.

And when I say “I”, I’m talking me, my wife, my three-year-old twins, and my dog. So, yeah … it’s an adjustment.

During this process — which is still ongoing — I’m also trying to buy a house in Northern New Jersey. If all goes well, it’ll be another 2-3 months, and then we get to start our new life, all living in one place with all of our stuff. Coolio.

Only … I still have to be a dad and a husband and keep delivering the goods for my full time day job in Manhattan. And … I’ve got another book to write! Yikes!

So where does the jelly jar and doorknob come into play? Glad you asked.

About three months ago, as we really started the packing process, and the end was finally in sight to sell our apartment, things started to fall apart.

Literally.

The first was the refrigerator. One morning, after having walked the dog, I came back — thinking about a key sequence I needed to smooth out for the Finders Keepers sequel.

But when I opened the fridge to get myself a cold drink … WHAM-O!

A jelly jar fell from the shelf, and smashed on the floor. The jar fell because the protective plate on the inner door fell apart. It broke. And by the way, have you ever tried cleaning up jelly and broken glass off the floor while keeping your dog and young son from trying to ‘help’ you? Double yikes.

Turns out, however, that the jelly jar fatality was just the beginning. In the following weeks, not one, but two more inner refrigerator shelves broke. Three of the four burners on my stove went out. The light socket in the hall closet died.

Meanwhile, I’m trying to hold the rest of my life together, and somehow find the brain space to keep the Finders Keepers sequel moving forward. Delusional on my part? Possibly. But I’m a writer through and through, and us writer dudes have a veeeeeery tough time putting projects on hold.

Nevertheless, the boxes are piling up in my apartment, all while we continue to pack, to wrap up negotiations on selling my apartment AND on the weekends going house hunting in New Jersey to find a new place to live while we also coordinate child care during the few months we’ll be with my in-laws.

And then the toilet seat breaks. Not the whole toilet, just the seat and lid. And because it’s us, it’s not a standard ceramic seat, but a specialty seat that needs to be special ordered. So when I called the plumber we used asking for assistance — perhaps not as cordially as I should have — he basically told me to stick it someplace unsavory.

Which meant me going back to him and groveling appropriately to smooth things over — which I did — and we got a new seat delivered and installed. And then three weeks later … it came lose again! Ah! But it was still hanging on. Barely.

So now we’re getting closer and closer to moving out of the apartment — movers are booked, closing is scheduled, we’ve almost — almost — arranged for day care in New Jersey – and I’m still holding out hope — fleeting as it may be — that I can advance the Finders Keepers sequel just a bit.

I did manage to squeeze in a weekend appearance at Shore Leave, in August, and I do have a few others signings lined up.

And then … just two days before I needed to move out — and have the buyer of our apartment do a final inspection before she writes us the big check — I reach for the doorknob, so I can enter the hallway.

Something I’ve done thousands and thousands and thousands of times over the past eight years.

I reach for the doorknob and … it fell off.

Seriously.

The doorknob. Fell. Off.

It was one of those classic ‘laugh or cry’ moments. And to protect my manhood here, I won’t say which.

Later that day, I went out to Home Depot to get more boxes, and pick up the inner doorknob stem to fix the darn thing. Only … Home Depot doesn’t carry that one particular part. Grrrr. Next up was a trip to the hardware store, which — mercifully — did have it, and after a few twists with a screwdriver, the doorknob was back in working order.

There’s actually more to this story — so much more — but it would take more time and energy than any of us have.

In terms of my living situation, my apartment is officially sold, the check has cleared and in my bank account, and I am, indeed, living in my in-law’s loft. With a nifty 2 hour commute —  each way, every day. But we’re getting closer to buying our own house, so there’s light at the end of this enormous tunnel we’ve been negotiating.

As for the Finders Keepers sequel … I haven’t been able to clack the keys on it for a while, but I’ll be back at it soon enough. The rest of the boys at Crazy 8 Press are bugging me to get that done!

But when I do finish, and I will … if you happen to notice a scene — or even a slight reference in there — to jelly jars or doorknobs … you now know the story behind the story. You’ve peaked through the window.

And if you’ve got a jelly jar story of your own … share it with us. Maybe it’ll make it into the next Finders Keepers novel.

Unless, of course, my computer falls apart while I’m writing it.

(Note: I am a contributing author/member with Crazy 8 Press. My latest blog entry, The Jelly Jar Fatality, was originally posted on the Crazy 8 Press Web site on September 30, 2013.  For more information, or to read the original post, visit http://www.crazy8press.com/2013/09/30/the-jelly-jar-fatality/)

The Pen & Muse Interview with Author Russ Colchamiro

Interviewer Denise Alicea w The Pen & Muse book review site stopped by to chat with me about my new book, the mysterious, action-packed space romp, Crossline, what inspired the story and the characters, and advice I might offer to new writers:

Interview with author of Crossline, Russ Colchamiro!

Q: Where are you from? Tell us a little about yourself!

A: I live in Queens, NY, married with two kids and a crazy dog. I’m a baseball junkie, and I love to travel whenever I get the chance, which hasn’t been much since fatherhood came along! And I probably shouldn’t watch it as much as I do, but The Big Bang Theory is total comfort food for me. When it’s on, all is well.

Q: Tell us about your book? How did it get started?

A: Published through Crazy 8 Press, Crossline is a rollicking space adventure about an American space pilot — Marcus Powell — who has been selected to test Taurus Enterprises’ Crossline prototype ship and its newly developed warp thrusters, which, if successful, will revolutionize space travel as we know it.

But during his journey Powell is forced through a wormhole and into a parallel universe —including a parallel Earth — where he finds himself at the center of a civil war he may have been destined for all along.

On this other Earth, he reluctantly teams up with a gorgeous, trigger-happy rebel leader, a pot-smoking Shaman, a crafty pie maker (watch out for her!), and a weary soldier who really hates his guts. Powell then has to survive a cross-country rescue mission with them and some trippy vision quests long enough for his wife and young daughter — who are back on his home Earth — to outsmart Taurus’ reclusive CEO, whose own secrets may prevent Powell from ever making it back home.

So what you’ve got with Crossline is a really fun scifi adventure, mixed in with humor, action, and mystery to solve. I think people will dig it.

The origin of Crossline is two-fold. It began as a short story trilogy I wrote in high school, around 1987 or so, very loosely based on the ‘troubles’ in Ireland, even though I really knew almost nothing about it. Ha! And then about ten years later I started working on a space adventure comic book idea. It never saw publication, but I knew I wanted to tell this epic adventure as a novel. But the short story trilogy is really the heart of Crossline. The space component then gave it a setting to become fully realized.

It’s a bit more intense than the novel itself, but here’s a pretty cool book trailer to give you a scope of the novel: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mJ8fey7_4VA

Q: How do you create your characters?

Click here to read the rest of the interview …

 

Laurie’s Thoughts and Reviews Q&A with Author Russ Colchamiro

Hi Gang-

Below is a new Q&A interview with yours truly, courtesy of book reviewer and interviewer Laurie from Laurie’s Thoughts and Reviews. Here we talk about my latest novel, the mysterious scifi space romp, CROSSLINE, my favorite TV shows, whether I’m an early morning chirpy bird or grumpy bear (take a guess), and where I would go, anywhere in the world, if my publisher was footing the bill:

Welcome Russ!  It’s so great of you to stop by today and agree to answer some questions .  I’m excited to find out a little about you and your books.

How did your start your writing career?

I wrote a King Arthur-style short story in the third grade. It was pretty bad, but I had fun with it. Then in high school I wrote a short story trilogy — about the ‘troubles’ in Ireland, of all things — which is actually the basis of my new sci-fi space adventure, Crossline. Go figure. So Crossline was actually 25 years in the making. But before that I started to get more serious about writing in college, and became a journalist professionally, so I was always writing.

But in terms of fiction I dabbled with comic book scripts and more serious short stories in my 20s, when I needed to sort of prime the pump, and get some really awful writing out of my system. And then about 10 years ago I started writing what became my debut novel, Finders Keepers. It’s been non-stop ever since.

Describe what it’s like to be an author in three words.

Thrilling. Heartbreaking. Exhausting.

If I came to visit early in the morning would you impress me as being more like a chirpy bird or a grumpy bear?

Grumpy bear, definitely. I don’t drink coffee — I’ve actually never had a cup of coffee, ever — so it takes me a while to ‘wake up’, even after I wake up. It’s nothing personal to anyone. I just need a little ‘me’ time before I really get going. But I have two little kids, so they’ve trained me to jump into daddy mode pretty much on demand, whether I’m in the mood or not!

How do you react to a bad review of your book?

Thankfully there have been far more good ones than bad, but with the negative reviews, I admit they can get under my skin a little bit … but usually not for long. If someone criticizes my work and I think they’ve made a fair point, I try to incorporate those comments into how I think about writing going forward, and look at the feedback as an opportunity to improve as a writer going forward. And I’m not just saying that. Sometimes the truth hurts! Ha.

But if I disagree with the comment or I feel that it makes no sense, I let it go. It just doesn’t bother me. One reviewer gave Finders Keepers a low rating because he said it had too much naughty language. But there’s an F-bomb on the very first page, including a kinky love-making scene. He knew what he was getting into and he kept reading anyway. There’s a compliment in there somewhere. But what did he think he was going to read going forward? That one made me laugh.

Tell us about the absolute BEST fan letter you have received.

A few months ago I attended the LunaCon sci-fi convention in Rye, NY. I was at my table, promoting Crossline. And then I heard a girl’s voice. “Russ!” I turned around and saw Kelly*, who is now a freshman at Syracuse University. She met me at a convention about a year before, and bought and read Finders Keepers, which she loved. She asked me if I was working on the sequel, which I am, and if I would have it ready for LunaCon 2014. I told her I wasn’t sure, but that I’m trying. She said, “Don’t rush. Take your time. Make it great.” That’s about the best moment I could ask for.
(*Not her real name)

What are your favorite TV shows?

Yikes. Tough one, but here goes: Current shows: Dexter, Breaking Bad, The Big Bang Theory, Homeland, Game of Thrones, Justified, The Killing, Sons of Anarchy, Mad Men, The Americans. Of all time: Sports Night, Northern Exposure, The Sopranos, The Wire, Homicide, The Shield, Seinfeld, Friends, Scrubs, Battlestar Galactica (remake), Lost, The X-Files, The Office (U.S. version), The Honeymooners, The Simpsons, Family Guy, M.A.S.H., House, Brotherhood, ER, The Twilight Zone, Star Trek, Star Trek Next Generation, Cheers, Columbo, Law & Order, The Odd Couple

Say your publisher has offered to fly you anywhere in the world to do research on an upcoming book, where would you most likely want to go?

Hmm …. I want to be careful about specifics, as doing so would ruin a few surprises I have coming in new books that I’m working on, but it’s safe to say that one location is hot, humid, and rocky, and the other is really cold. And I mean REALLY cold. Use no more than two sentences.

Why should we read your new book, Crossline?

Crossline is part rollicking space romp, part parallel Universe stranger-in-a-strange-land adventure, and part mystery. It’s a pulpy epic tale that will keep you guessing — and out of breath — laced with great characters, plenty of twists, and loads of humor.

Click here for the full, expanded interview …

 

The Story Behind Crossline

Here’s my blog post on the Crazy 8 Web site, about the origins of my new book, Crossline:

http://www.crazy8press.com/2013/03/01/crossline-explained/

As with all great stories, Crossline was inspired by — what else — a girl.

I’ll explain.

Crossline is actually the melding of two completely disparate ideas I developed a dozen years apart. Back in the late ‘90s, I had an idea for a sci-fi comic book mini-series. A buddy of mine helped me see how big Crossline could really be, so I upped the action and then we put the very beginning of Crossline into layout. But the comic book never took off, so to speak.

Yeah. Okay, great. But … what’s this about a girl?

Well … back in high school I had a crush on a redhead, who was a tried and true American Irish lass who also happened to be fiery and passionate about all things Ireland and the IRA. So of course I had to write about it, because who better to capture ‘the troubles’ then a 16-year-old Jewish kid from Long Island who knew absolutely nothing about Ireland?

And so a trilogy of short stories came to be. They were lumpy and unpolished, but there was a real cross-border love story set within political action and intrigue, and each story was an improvement over the last. The framework for something special was in place.

(For the record, I never published the stories, and to my chagrin at the time, I never got the girl.)

And yet … I held onto the story idea, and when at long last I saw how the sci-fi component could really raise the stakes to this human drama, I started writing the novel. It took almost 25 years, but Crossline has finally arrived.

The space adventure gets the action rolling, but there’s a saga that comes with it. And lest this all sounds a bit heavy … fear not. I replaced the original teenaged angst with some philosophical musings, cosmic shenanigans, and loads of humor, cuz like Plato himself liked to say, that’s just how I roll (or maybe it was Confucius, I forget).

In any case, if Crossline sounds like your kinda thing, it will be available both in print and e-book through my pals at Crazy8 Press. Coming soon.

Crazy 8 Press to Publish Crossline

Here’s the blog from Crazy 8 Press announcing my new book, Crossline:

http://www.crazy8press.com/2013/02/16/coming-in-march-crossline-by-russ-colchamiro/

Up until now our little gang at Crazy 8 has published books by just our little band of writers — the founding members, as we like say (ahem-hem). But we finally thought, you know, it’s time we opened our doors to some of Russ Grooves an Alien

our fellow writers and bring them into the Crazy 8 family. As announced at Farpoint this afternoon, this will be our next offering and one we’re excited about.

With that, let’s  welcome our newest brother in arms — author Russ Colchamiro.

If you don’t know Russ, his debut novel was the hilarious sci-fi backpacking comedy Finders Keepers, which he published to some nice fanfare through 3 Finger Prints.

In fact, review site Ruled by Books had this to say about Russ: “There are only a handful of comedic authors that I enjoy, tops among them being Douglas Adams and Christopher Moore. After reading Finders Keepers … add Russ Colchamiro to that list.”

And now he’s back with his latest novel, Crossline, which will debut in Mid-March as the first official Crazy 8 novel written by an outside author.

So what’s Crossline about?

If you ask Russ, he calls it a modern-day Buck Rogers/Flash Gordon-style space opera, with his usual time-bending, philosophical shenanigans mixed in, as well as action, space soaring thrills, some deadly, but lovely ladies, and of course, loads of humor.

Space battles? Check

Wormholes? Check

Alternate realities? Check

Pot smoking shaman? Check

You want more? Keep checking in with us here  for further updates and pretty soon we’ll hear from Russ himself about how this crazy space opera came together.

Finders Keepers Hits NY Comic-Con 2012

Sorry I’m a little late on this one, but I’m still catching my breath after the NY Comic-Con.

I was there on Thursday of the 4-day event, but I got more than my money’s worth. Comic-Con is always such a madhouse, with Thursday being the most manageable day by far.

While there I got to see some of my writer pals, including No Small Bills and Too Small For Tall author Aaron Rosenberg, and Glenn Hauman — both with Crazy 8 Press — as well as Keith DeCandido and Star Trek author stud David Mack.

And, as always, I had my adventures with long-time partner-in-crime Rich Henn, who was out there slinging comics like a madman. We wound up having late-night burgers and beers — all was good in the end. Although the fries were wire-thin curly cue, so you had to eat them with a fork – or by the handful. Not prime French fry logistics, but that should only be my biggest problem.

During the show itself, I was out there doing the usual Finders Keepers promotion, and made a new fans, including:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And, of course, this dude:

 

 

 

 

This will likely be my last show of 2012, but based on what’s in the hopper, it’s starting to look like 2013 will be quite a year indeed!

 

Russ’ Newsletter: Vol. 6, Issue 2 – Crossline Follows Father’s Day

Hi Gang-

I’m back after a bit of newsletter hiatus, as I had an unusually hectic few months that required my attentions on multiple fronts. But I’m happy to report lotsa good stuffing coming. The best news, of course, is that my little ninjas are happy and healthy, and in fact have their second birthday coming up in August, if you can believe it. Good gravy!

As for my writing endeavors:

* At the end of March I had a table at the annual ICON sci-fi event in Stonybrook, where Finders Keepers sales were a bit off from last year, but still posed a very strong showing. The questions I was asked most often throughout the weekend? When is the sequel coming out, and will a movie follow?

The answers are: I start the first of two Finders Keepers sequels at the end of the summer and …. I sure as heck hope so! I’m working on it! For an inside look into a potential dream movie cast, click here.

And check out some new integalactic fans:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was also fun catching up at the show with fellow authors Aaron Rosenberg, Keith DeCandido and Patrick Thomas.

* Speaking of Finders Keepers, here is a recent compliment, one of the most passionate responses I’ve received in a while: “I can spend an eternity here reading this stunning tale. It was an addicting sling of words that spun a silken web around me, entombed me and I just couldn’t pry myself away from it.”

* As for my newest endeavor, here’s the latest and greatest on Crossline. I will be spending the rest of this month doing intense line edits, fine tuning every last word to ensure that we come away with a rock’ em, sock ’em ass-kicking space adventure … with my usual time bending, philosophical shenanigans included.

After that, I turn the manuscript over to my loyal, trusted and fabulous copy editor Barney O’Neill — who did a bang-up job in the same capacity on Finders Keepers — to ensure that there’s not a word out of place.

And then … get this sucker published!

* Last but not least let me give a special shout out to my beautiful wife, Liz, who just celebrated a birthday, and also to all the dad’s out there for a festive and happy Father’s Day.

That’s all she wrote for this edition. Liz and I are headed off next weekend for a much-need vacation to Spring Lake, N.J., where we’ll spend three days on the beach, staring out at the ocean, while my ninjas and Simon storm the castle, er … get quality time with their grandparents.

Until next time …

All the Best,

Russ

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