Category Archives: amazon

Release Day! Model #37 now out everywhere

And it’s now out!  Amazon (and all its markets), Barnes and Noble, Ibooks, Smashwords, Kobo… well everywhere except for Google, who is being a pain right now. Check out this classic science fiction short story two-pack today!

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A Science Fiction Short Story Two-pack

Amazon.com

Barnes and Noble

Smashwords

Excerpt:

She crossed her arms, looking hard at him. “What is this place? I thought you said it was a beauty pageant! For special people like me!”

He glanced around nervously and took her by the arm. “This isn’t the place to talk. We can discuss it later, once we’re home.” At the sound of the audience clapping, he frowned. “They’re too narrow-minded. Kitchen shelves! Idiots.” He pulled her over towards the coat rack where several shiny metallic coats hung, including his own.

They were leaving before the show even ended? Baby tore her hand away, glaring at him. “I want to hear about the other models. I want to hear what they say.” More than that, she wanted answers to the mystery of what this place was really about.

His bushy brows drew together. Father was older, with gray hair and glasses. They looked nothing alike, and yet he had said that she was born of his genetic materials. “Don’t speak back to me. When I say it’s time to go, you obey.” He grabbed her arm again.

The other models watched them with concerned looks on their faces. Baby tried to break free of his hold. “When do I have a say in what I do? Didn’t you just say I’m an adult now? When can I meet people, see places?”

Father opened his mouth to reply, then shut it. “I’ll explain everything later. Once we’re home.” He glanced at the muscled security standing nearby. “I need assistance. Help me get her into the car.”

Out of the corner of her eye, Baby saw Moo returning from the stage. Their eyes met, and he frowned, seeing her struggle.

Fear churned in her gut. She’d argued once with Father when he’d told her it was time to get in the cage. He’d struck her across the cheek. The mark had only lasted a day or two, but she never forgot the shame of disappointing him, the anger in his eyes.

Moo was walking away. She might not ever get to see him again, or talk to him. Baby squared her shoulders and glared at her father. “Let go of me. You can’t make me go with you. I’m a legal adult now.” She hadn’t ever read an actual law, but she’d read enough to know that adults had rights under the Constitution. It occurred to her that Father might be breaking a law or two with how he was keeping her, now that she was eighteen.

“Baby,” he pleaded, looking angry and hurt at the same time. “What’s gotten into you?”

New Science Fiction Short Story pack available on Pre-Order!

Now available for Pre-order on Amazon and Smashwords! A science fiction short story two-pack, featuring “Model #37” about a genetically enhanced young adult, and “The Nannypod,” about the device that people just can’t live without. This ebook will be out for sale on September 30, 2015.

Amazon link: Model #37: A Science Fiction Short Story Two-Pack

Smashwords link: Model #37: A Science Fiction Short Story Two-Pack

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Model #37: Baby has lived a privileged life—her father always said she was “special.” And Baby knows she’s not like normal humans. She’s only 47 inches tall, even though she’s eighteen years old. She can live off tiny amounts of food. And she’s got a dorsal fin in the middle of her back.

Today’s the big day. She’s supposed to model for the world, and make her father proud. The only questions are why is she so nervous, and why won’t her father let her out of the lab? Most of all, Baby, also known as Model 37, wants to see the world.

Maybe even meet another “special” person like her.

Bonus short story:  The Nannypod

It’s Monday morning, and Chris has to get to work. The only problem is, his Nannypod, the device strapped to his wrist that runs his life, just died. He doesn’t even know which bus to get on.

How will he live without it?

(Also included is an excerpt from the paranormal novella, “Dreams and Constellations”)

And here’s an excerpt from “Model #37”:

Baby’s heart lurched as the announcer called her number. She heard people beyond the curtain murmuring to each other, though she couldn’t discern the words. Sixteen years of training had led to this moment. She glanced at her father, breathing hard.

Lines around his eyes deepened as he granted her a smile, towering over her diminutive size. He patted her on the head. “Show them, Baby. Make me proud.”

She fidgeted, adjusting the sheer bodysuit. It hid enough for modesty, but it felt confining. She didn’t like the open back, exposing her dorsal ridge. Father didn’t have one of those. He said it made her special.

“Go!” her father urged, giving her a push. She brushed the curtain out of her way and stepped onto the runway. Lights blinded her, but she’d practiced this over and over. Smile at the people beyond the glare of the lights. Ignore the flash of cameras taking pictures. Walk with confidence down the runway. She moved, forcing herself not to rush despite the pounding of her heart. Keep to the rhythm of the music.

“And here’s Dr. Heim’s model, number 37. She’s a little thing, as you can see, but this isn’t dwarfism; she’s perfectly proportioned with no deformities or known genetic defects. Dr. Heim designed her with the group objective of species modification in light of our water and food shortages and increasing global temperature.” The female announcer’s voice blared through the speakers, and Baby wondered what the woman was talking about. She was specially bred, that was true. Father had told her so. And she knew she was smaller than others, than the true humans. But group objectives? What group objective?

She reached the end of the runway and gave a twirl in the white body suit, smiling at those in the front row. Men and women of different ethnicities looked her over critically, jotting things down into their tablets. Several took pictures of her, reporters, possibly. Not one returned her smile. Baby tried to keep the fear at bay. Did they like her?

The announcer continued. “Dr. Heim wants to remind viewers that while Model 37 may be small, she is fully mature at eighteen years old. She requires only 500 calories and 32 ounces of water a day. Note also the dorsal ridge, designed to regulate body temperature, even in extreme heat.”

“What is her exact height?” One fellow asked, raising a pen.

“Approximately 47 inches, or 119 centimeters tall,” the announcer replied. “Model 37 weighs only 45 pounds, about the same as a six year old child.”

A woman carrying a tablet with a bud in her ear called out. “Are there concerns that this type of design could face discrimination, such as the kind faced by individuals with dwarfism? What about things like car designs, kitchens with high shelves?”

Baby was nearing the end of her walk, almost back to the curtains. The questions bewildered her—what discrimination? And why? She’d lived her entire life in a facility with others like her. Some were human; others were four-legged animals, dogs, sheep, even a pig. All of them had modifications, to make them special. Like her.

Before she could duck behind the safety of the curtains, her father stepped out on stage and grabbed a microphone. He squinted at the woman who had asked the question. “Society already has in place protections and equipment to assist those of lesser physical stature. I imagine that over time, things would be adjusted to the new standard height. This has historical precedent. Modern man is taller than his ancestors. In this day and age, I see that as a liability, not an asset.”

Baby stood at the edge of the curtains, hovering. She thought she recalled him telling her to wave and bow at this point, but her thoughts had scattered. Her father sounded angry. Another person near their end of the runway raised his hand. “How do you expect people to take your design seriously? She looks like a child!”

That she could not stand for. “I’m not a child!” Baby said. Her voice didn’t sound childlike; it earned surprised looks from several of those closest. She looked to her father, but he frowned and shook his head, then made a gesture for her to go backstage. Shooting the fellow a glare, Baby pivoted and exited through the curtains.

She heard the announcer clear her throat. “Right, so any further questions for Dr. Heim? Remember that you all can place your votes on what you consider to be the most promising breakthroughs as we move forward to approach the world community with our proposals and designs.”

Baby nearly ran into the next model, a tall thin thing with blue skin and gills, wearing some kind of apparatus that supplied it with water to breathe. It wore a tiny bikini Baby would be horrified to wear. Baby ducked out of the way and stood off to the side, waiting for her father to return backstage. She’d known about the voting. But it seemed there was much her father hadn’t told her.

When she looked at the other models milling around, Baby saw them with new eyes. A model with dark brown skin shifted her stance, and Baby realized her skin was scaly like a snake. Another model, this one a tall, strong-looking fellow, had tiny horns on his forehead. He chewed gum sleepily, leaning against the wall.

She walked over to him. He smelled of grass and something else, something she’d never smelled before. The closest she could describe it was ‘male.’ “What’s your name?” she asked, hoping that since her part was over, she’d be able to enjoy herself a little before Father returned.

The young man scraped the toe of his boot along the wooden floor, looking down as he answered. Brown hair fell into his face. “They call me Moo.” She couldn’t tell by the dim lighting, but Baby suspected he was blushing.

“Moo? That’s an odd name. Why do they call you that?” Baby knew why Father called her Baby. She was his baby. He’d told her that nothing fit better. He loved her. He’d even given her a rag doll to hold when he locked her in her pen at night.

Moo rocked back and forth, holding himself. He swallowed whatever he was chewing. “I’m part bull. So…Moo.” He didn’t seem particularly happy about it.

“Is that why you have horns?” She reached up to touch one.

He shied back, breathing hard, but then stilled himself, hands clenching into fists as he allowed her to feel the hard smoothness. “Sorry. My instincts get the better of me sometimes. They’re real.”

Baby glanced over as the next model stepped towards the curtains, but there was no sign of her father. “Are you nervous?”

Moo shrugged again. “A little. I don’t think the judges will like me.” He took a step towards the scaly girl but she hissed at him. He stepped back, lowering his head again. “Everybody thinks I’m stupid.”

“Well that’s stupid,” Baby said, pouting. No one had ever questioned her intellect before. She could speak and read four different languages, and Father said her math skills were exceptional. She only wished more of her education had come from something other than books. He hadn’t even allowed her to watch TV, though he’d told her about it. “So where is your parent?” She glanced around, but most of the people backstage were like them, unusual mixtures of genetic material. She noticed the security guards wearing utility belts with things like handcuffs and batons. That struck her. Why would the models need security guards?

Moo scratched his head, looking nervous. “Out watching the show. I don’t like these things. I’ve already been to three of them.”

Baby studied his eyes, noticing for the first time that his pupils were abnormally large. She admired his eyes. She couldn’t explain why. “Why don’t you like them?” She hadn’t liked the tone of the announcer. Perhaps that was it.

Scaly Girl threw them a dirty look. “They don’t showcase our skills. It’s a bloody waste of time. Just a media circus to make the politicians happy, that the scientists are thinking up something as the world goes to hell.” Baby blinked at the thick Australian accent, but even as she opened her mouth to ask a question, the girl turned away again, ignoring them.

From beyond the curtain, Baby heard clapping and muted voices. Apparently the audience had liked the girl who breathed underwater. As the underwater breather returned backstage, Scaly Girl stepped towards the curtain to take her call. Moo stamped one foot, breathing hard. Baby placed a hand on his well-muscled arm to calm him. “I’m sure you’ll do fine.”

“I want to run. I want to escape,” he told her. At first she thought he was joking. By the fear in his eyes, however, she realized he meant it.

Countdown Sale Today through Sunday! Heart of the Witch

Okay, NOW the book is up for sale! Now through Sunday, grab the epic fantasy novel Heart of the Witch for just $0.99 on Amazon.

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Amazon.com:  http://www.amazon.com/Heart-of-the-Witch-ebook/dp/B00AR5HMZO/

Zerrick’s fears are closing in on him. As an awkward scribe of nineteen, he should be courting ladies, or helping his father, the Reverend, in his endless tirades against magic. But a local girl has been accused of witchcraft. The mayor’s son is ill. And the town is clamoring to put all users of magic to the stake. He can’t tell them that he’s the one they’re hunting for.

Beyond the colonial town, a vast wilderness awaits, with strange tattooed natives who worship the Goddess, mythical monsters, and magic in every plant and tree. Forced to flee, Zerrick searches to find out if his magic is a curse or a blessing. He meets a young woman, Mira, who seeks to flee the harsh constraints of their society as well.

All they want is a place where they can live peacefully, but magic has grown more volatile and dark omens have appeared. For Zerrick and Mira, the only way forward is following a strange call from Zerrick’s dreams, into greater unknowns than they were ever prepared for.

ARRGH!! Amazon messed up my Countdown Sale!

I apologize to everyone who received notice today of my fantasy novel, Heart of the Witch, which is SUPPOSED to be up for sale on Amazon for only $0.99 today through August 17.  Amazon stupidly messed up and deleted the promotion.

I have re-uploaded the request, and the book will be on sale from August 14 through 17 for the Countdown special price of 99 cents.

Here are links to the Amazon US and UK stores for the book:

US:  http://www.amazon.com/Heart-of-the-Witch-ebook/dp/B00AR5HMZO/

UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Heart-Witch-Judy-Goodwin/dp/061574673X/

Description:

As an awkward scribe of nineteen, Zerrick should be courting ladies; or helping the Reverend, his father, in his endless tirades against magic. But a local girl has been accused of witchcraft, the mayor’s son is ill, and the town is clamoring to put all users of magic to the stake. He can’t tell them that he’s the one they’re hunting for.

Forced to flee, Zerrick searches to find out if his magic is a curse or a blessing. Beyond the colonial town a vast wilderness awaits, with mythical monsters, strange tattooed natives who worship the Goddess, and magic in every plant and tree. In a neighboring town he meets a young woman, Mira, who seeks to flee the harsh constraints of their society.

All they want is a place where they can live peacefully, but unrest is everywhere. The land itself is suffering as magic has grown more volatile and dark omens have appeared. Stranger still, Zerrick dreams of another woman calling to him, demanding to be freed. For Zerrick and Mira, the only way forward is following the call–into greater unknowns than they were ever prepared for.

Excerpt:

Like a cannonball bursting out of a cannon, the magic surged beneath Zerrick and spat him out of the ground, sending him flying into a bed of palms. He landed hard, but safe, feeling numb all over. From behind him, a shriek pierced the air, and with a groan, he rolled over and managed to lift his head above the palm leaves to see the earth dance and churn around Madame Lotus.

Plants reared up to twist around her arms and legs, pulling her to the earth, as she began sinking even as Zerrick had. It didn’t stop at her waist, but pulled her in deeper and deeper, leaves flying around in a whirlwind around her head, lightning crackling through the ground and up along the twisted vines. She fought with all her might, clawing at the vines and thrashing to escape the earth’s hold, but it was useless, and in her eyes Zerrick could see she knew it.

She glanced once in his direction, her brown eyes lucid and filled with utter horror at her predicament. The vines pulled her down by her arms, until there was just her head above ground. Then, with a loud crash of thunder and a horrible rumbling deep within the soil, the ground swallowed her up.

The storm and wind ceased so suddenly, Zerrick thought he had lost his hearing. The leaves, no longer held up by the magical wind, settled on the overturned earth, and slowly the sounds of the jungle resumed. Zerrick lay crouched in the palms, breathing hard with the shock of what he had just witnessed, every nerve tingling. His head ached as he raised himself on one knee, looking to see if Murtis had escaped the backlash of power, or if the noise had attracted others.

Murtis was still sitting on his log, his face white with astonishment, his mouth hanging open. Seeing the look of horror on the other witch’s face, Zerrick realized just what he had done.

He had committed murder.

Free Today through Friday! Ogres At Alcatraz Isle

Get a free copy of the humorous urban fantasy short fiction, “Ogres At Alcatraz Isle” on Amazon today through Friday, May 8th!  This tale follows the adventures of Oakland Fae Enforcement Officer Cathy Pembroke, and her zany encounters with creatures invading the Bay Area. You can also get “Fairies At Fisherman’s Wharf” for just 99 cents!

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Ogres: http://www.amazon.com/Ogres-Alcatraz-Cathy-Pembroke-Tales-ebook/dp/B00UMESDNA/

Fairies: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00EJPA1YM/

Description:

The Fae are at it again! All over the world, deforestation has caused the barriers between world to breakdown. Now monsters are invading the city. Cathy Pembroke, a member of the Bay Area’s new Fae Enforcement Division, must deal with everything from trolls to fairies to goblins knocking up the local Circle K. Only this time, it’s much worse.  Ogres have taken over the popular tourist attraction at Alcatraz Isle, and worse, they’ve taken hostages. Cathy and her team must find a way to rescue the humans and the landmark. It’s their greatest challenge yet.

Available for Pre-Order, out March 19!

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I’m proud to announce that the 2nd Cathy Pembroke Tale, “Ogres At Alcatraz Isle,” is now available for pre-order on Amazon.  http://www.amazon.com/Ogres-Alcatraz-Cathy-Pembroke-Tales-ebook/dp/B00UMESDNA/

This was actually first intended to be the third installment of the Cathy Pembroke Tales, but I decided to pull down the original tale, “Trolls Under Golden Gate Bridge.” This one was a very short story at only about 3500 words which was originally published in the Once Upon A Time magazine several years ago. The new tales are still short but longer than that one–“Ogres” runs at about 9000 words.

Blurb:

The Fae are at it again! All over the world, deforestation has caused the barriers between world to breakdown. Now monsters are invading the city. Cathy Pembroke, a member of the Bay Area’s new Fae Enforcement Division, must deal with everything from trolls to fairies to goblins knocking up the local Circle K. Only this time, it’s much worse.

Ogres have taken over the popular tourist attraction at Alcatraz Isle, and worse, they’ve taken hostages. Cathy and her team must find a way to rescue the humans and the landmark. It’s their greatest challenge yet.

(Please note that it is not necessary to have read “Fairies At Fisherman’s Wharf” first, but it is available on Amazon, Smashwords, Barnes and Noble, and a ton of other places for only 99 cents!)

Free today through Friday! A paranormal novella

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The holidays were so crazy, I nearly forgot all about this! From now through Friday January 9th, you can grab my paranormal novella on Amazon for free!  Dreams of the past become a message for the present when Iona starts seeing Mayan temples and dreams of death.

Link: http://www.amazon.com/Dreams-Constellations-Judy-Goodwin-ebook/dp/B00D7NQDHQ/

Description:

By day, Iona Mendoza is a college student at the University of Arizona, studying psychology and trying to avoid Justin Tabers, an annoying fellow student. By night, however, she is the daughter of a Mayan priest, being forced to marry against her will before the neighboring kingdom attacks her city. As the danger escalates, Iona begins to encounter issues in her real life–or are the dreams more real?

She must figure out the mystery before war comes to her dreams and possibly takes away both her futures.

Excerpt:

This can’t be a dream.

Iona walked through the center of the marketplace, bustling with women wearing cotton blouses and skirts or men wearing only loincloths. They spoke in a near constant chatter of syllables she knew she shouldn’t understand, but she did. It was crowded, the sun blazing overhead, and heat of the earth seeped through her thin sandals. People muttered about the lack of rain, the lack of food. It hadn’t always been this way, Iona knew, although she didn’t know how she knew. She fought her way through the busy streets, towards the temple district, towards home.

The palace was a long rectangular building with many windows and doors, two-storied and flanked by towers. There were memories, memories that Iona had but could not clearly recall, of battles that had been fought between local tribes, leading to the buildup of higher walls, grander towers. She lived inside the palace, in one of the many rooms, but she was not royalty. As soon as Iona thought that, she was inside the palace, in one of the rooms, dimly lit by a single window shining light onto an earthen floor. Her father was there, speaking to her.

“There’s talk that Ucit Zok is going to attack the city again,” he was saying, but Iona was only half hearing the words. Something felt wrong, but she wasn’t sure what it was. She looked down at her hands, noticing the brown skin, the calluses and cracked nails. There was a jade bracelet on her wrist that looked like a parrot. Those were not her hands. And yet, they were.

Her father spoke again. “Ixtar, do you hear what I am saying? The city is becoming unstable. I want to make sure you are safe. I’m going to arrange your marriage to Tuk Baal, the merchant. He is wealthy, and he has the option to trade with our enemies or leave this city if things grow worse.” Iona stared at the wizened-looking man before her, wearing a long loincloth and a beaded necklace with some kind of animal claw dangling just above his chest. He was a stranger. Yet he was also her father.

“I don’t wish to marry him,” Iona found herself saying. And she didn’t–Tuk was a stupid, loud man who laughed too much and showed off his wealth.

“You will marry him. The wedding will take place in three days, during the summer solstice. It is an auspicious year.” A chill went through Iona at her father’s words.

“I would rather die,” she told him, but she obediently took the clay tablet from him to deliver his message to Tuk Baal.