Announcing Maximum Velocity: The Best of Full-Throttle Space Tales!

Back in 2008 at the Starfest Convention, I was approached by editor David Rozansky of Flying Pen Press and writer/editor David Boop about editing a collection of short stories for the publisher’s series of pulp-style science fiction stories, Full-Throttle Space Tales. After soliciting stories from friends and other recommended authors, sifting through a veritable gushing fountain of awesome entries, I was able to whittle down the 100+ submissions I received into an offering of 18 stories. The results of my freshman editing effort became Space Grunts, the third installment of the FTST series, which was published in March of 2009.

spacegrunts-coverThere ultimately were six FTST anthologies, each with a different theme and a broad selection of stories to go with their respective book’s central premise:

Space Pirates – edited by David Lee Summers
Space Sirens – edited by Carol Hightshoe
Space Grunts – edited by moi
Space Horrors – edited by David Lee Summers
Space Tramps – edited by Jennifer Brozek
Space Battles – edited by Bryan Thomas Schmidt

Flying Pen has since stopped publishing fiction. All of the original anthologies are out of print (and a couple are listed on sites like Amazon with some truly bizarre secondary market prices), and the rights to the individual stories have reverted back to their original authors.

Skip ahead to early 2014, when David Lee Summers first broached the idea of finding a way to reprint the original FTST anthologies, perhaps with an eye toward one day reviving the series. Though all of the editors were intrigued by the idea, it lay dormant for a while as we all tended to other things on our respective plates. Then, in the summer of 2015, I was at a convention with David and Jennifer Brozek, and revisit the notion. Finding a home for six collections of short stories seemed to be a rather daunting task, so the idea of creating a “Best of” anthology was hatched, while retaining the hope of this perhaps kick-starting a FTST revival.

David, with the help of the aforementioned David Boop, then took our idea to best-selling and award-winning author/editor Kevin J. Anderson, who happens to have his own independent publishing company, WordFire Press. Kevin was enthusiastic about hosting our little anthology, so with that in our pocket, we five editors got to work figuring out what would go in it.

The idea was simple: Each editor selected three to five stories from one of the anthologies for consideration by the other editors. To keep things as impartial as possible, we decided to reread the anthology that came before ours in the sequence (with David pulling double duty since he’d edited two). For example, I went through the stories collected in the second anthology, Space Sirens, and made my recommendations.

The result of our various email conversations, teeth gnashing, sword fighting, thumb wrestling, and so on?


(Click to Biggie Size)


The Full-Throttle Space Tales series collected action-packed, high-octane, science fiction stories across the full potential of the genre. Here, the original editors have teamed up to pick the very best of Full-Throttle Space Tales, eighteen stories collected here for the first time.

Stories by David Boop • C.J. Henderson • W.A. Hoffman • Julia Phillips
David Lee Summers • Carol Hightshoe • Irene Radford • Bob Brown
Scott Pearson • Alan L. Lickiss • Danielle Ackley-McPhail • Dayton Ward
Anna Paradox • Ivan Ewert • Erik Scott de Bie • Shannon Page • Mark J. Ferrari
Gene Mederos • Jean Johnson • Mike Resnick •  Brad R. Torgersen

Buckle up, because we’re accelerating to

Pretty cool, eh?

Maximum Velocity: The Best of Full-Throttle Space Tales, is currently set for publication in June. More details as they firm up, but it’s very possible I’ll have copies with me for the upcoming Shore Leave Convention. Stay tuned, folks, because we’re about to go Full-Throttle!


Space Grunts and Trekcast. Awwww, yeah.

Last Thursday marked the official publication date of Space Grunts, the iddy-biddy anthology I edited for Flying Pen Press. As well as distributing marketing info to various booksellers and whatnot, they also conducted a brief interview with me. Read all about how Space Grunts came to be.

Last Friday night, I once again spent some time with the gang from Trekcast, the weekly Star Trek podcast. David Ivy and Darren Benjamin were joined by Jerad Formby, current author of Trekcast’s “Hey, Star Trek!” blog as well as one-time performer at Star Trek: The Experience (he was the Ferengi “Quan”). The topic of our discussion? The new Star Trek movie, of course, as well as how we as Star Trek fans carry way too much trivia and other minutiae around in our heads. Our chit-chat was but one part of the episode, which also features an interview with Andy Gore, CEO of Quantum Mechanix, the super-cool outfit that makes high-quality prop replicas and other collectibles from various SF and Fantasy properties. Check out Episode 28: “You Know Too Much”. Then subscribe to the podcast and listen to it every week. These guys are a lot of fun to hang out with.

Happy Publication Day, Space Grunts!

I was reminded today by publisher David Rozansky at Flying Pen Press that today is the official publication date for Space Grunts!

Space Grunts cover

Yes, it’s been listed as available at Amazon for a bit now, and we premiered the book last month at the Starfest convention in Denver, but those were advance reader copies. This is the real deal.


So, give my author line-up a well-deserved “W00T!” They done good:

Derek Tyler Attico
Robin Wayne Bailey
Kirsten Beyer
David Boop
John Coffren
Jeff D. Jacques
Jean Johnson
Alan L. Lickiss
Julie McGalliard
Nayad A. Monroe
Scott Pearson
Irene Radford
Selina Rosen
Bradley H. Sinor and Susan P. Sinor
Anne Stringer and Jason McDowell
James Swallow
Geoffrey Thorne

Thanks, folks!

Space Grunts

spacegrunts-coverFull-Throttle Space Tales #3

In the future, war is still Hell.

After you bomb your targets from the air, sea, or high orbit, someone has to go in and occupy the territory youve just claimed. They have to hump their gear in on their own backs, and they fight in all manner of inhospitable environments, from open space to the toxic atmosphere of alien worlds to the airless vacuum on the surface of a dead moon. You need someone who just does what has to be done, for as long as it takes to accomplish the mission.

You need the infantry. You need grunts.

Answer the call to arms! Join the brave men and women who march into battle, be it here on the Earth of tomorrow or on far-flung worlds. From the pages of history which has yet to be written come eighteen stories of duty, courage and strength in the face of bitter conflict — be it against our fellow humans or even life forms as yet unimagined.

See how future conflict is experienced from the newest recruit to the most war-weary general, not only by those caught in the heat of pitched battle but also those left behind. Visit near future Earth, where war is broadcast in real time with corporate sponsorship. Meet a mysterious entity that takes on the form of a dead soldier and brings with it a harsh message for humanity. Elsewhere, an alien race comes calling, interested in whatever resources it can take from Earth, and not at all worried about any resistance which might be offered by anyone already living there.

Do your part, and enlist today! Gear up and get on the ready line with the likes of Robin Wayne Bailey, Selina Rosen, James Swallow, Julie McGalliard and many more.

Order it direct from Flying Pen Press!
Trade Paperback from

Space Grunts: The Author Line-up!

Well, the corrected page proofs are with the publisher. Contracts are signed and en route to and fro, so I figure it’s way past time to introduce y’all to the talented band of word slingers who have made Full-Throttle Space Tales #3: Space Grunts the kick-ass little anthology I think it’s gonna be (though I’m naturally biased):

Derek Tyler Attico, “Blowback”

Robin Wayne Bailey, “Shin-Gi-Tai”

Kirsten Beyer, “Widow’s Weeds”

David Boop, “The Thing With Private Leon’s Face”

John Coffren, “Across the Endless Sea”

Jeff D. Jacques, “Rush”

Jean Johnson, “It’s Not a Game”

Alan L. Lickiss, “Granny’s Grunts”

Julie McGalliard, “98 Hill”

Nayad A. Monroe, “An Assessment of the Incident At Camp Righteous”

Scott Pearson, “Finders Keepers”

Irene Radford, “Price of Command”

Selina Rosen, “Unchained”

Bradley H. Sinor and Susan P. Sinor, “Who Stand and Wait”

Anne Stringer and Jason McDowell, “Flashback”

James Swallow, “Target Market”

Geoffrey Thorne, “Truth Metric”

Oh, and me, “A Fresh Perspective”

Cover for Space Grunts

Say howdy to my peeps!

ETA: The official publication date is May 14th, though advance reader copies (ARCs) are supposed to be available next weekend at the Starfest Convention in Denver.

Space Grunts cover…all shiny and stuff!

As I work my way through the stacks of contracts, page proofs, and whatnot associated with the Space Grunts anthology, I pause the madness long enough to offer up a peek at the cover:

Cover for Space Grunts
Click to embiggen.

The only thing left to add are the names of the contributing authors, which will be done any day now as contracts are finalized.

The art is provided by Laura Givens, who’s done a whole mess of sweet cover art. Check out the gallery on her site.

We now return you to the insanity, already in progress….

How the other half lives.

The three or four of you who read this blog and keep tabs on what I’m working on may recall that earlier this year, I was approached by friend and fellow writer David Boop on behalf of Flying Pen Press, a small-press publisher based in Denver, Colorado. FPP was in the midst of ramping up a series of anthologies with the umbrella title Full-Throttle Space Tales. The first two anthos, Space Pirates and Space Sirens, were in process, and they were looking for an editor to tackle the third book, tentatively titled Space Grunts and focusing on space-based military stories. Given my background, David thought I might be a good fit for the book.

Needless to say, I was intrigued. I’d never really given serious thought to the editing side of things. The challenge of editing an anthology appealed to me, and though the publisher wasn’t going to be offering huge gobs of cash, I was looking at the bigger picture. After all, it might theoretically be easier to convince the editor at a big-city publishing house that I could handle anthology editing duties if I was able to point to at least one actual example, right?

So, with no small amount of skittishness, I waded into the editing waters, crafting a proposal and a list of potential contributors. I approached several friends in the Trek writing community, and I went after a few “new voices” who had yet to make that first pro sale. I even called in a favor or two from some Big Names, in the hopes that their schedules might allow participation (or, at the very least, that they had a story languishing in a file somewhere that fit the theme). The responses were far better than even my most hopeful estimates. Pretty much everyone I asked either said straight out that they wanted to write a story, or else wavered between “I will if I can fit into my schedule” and “No” for a respectful amount of time. I suppose it’s gushy to say I was overwhelmed by the positive response (and maybe I shouldn’t have been; I tend to hang around with a classy bunch of peeps, after all), but overwhelmed I was. When all was said and done and I had stories in hand, I was told by the publisher that the turnout was better than both of the first two anthologies combined.

And with that, the hard part began.

The anthology would of course have a maximum number of contributors, as well as a maximum word count. I had nearly four times as many stories as could ever fit in the book, so obviously choices had to be made. While none of the stories were “bad,” some had problems which could or could not be addressed, depending on the circumstances. The largest contingent of stories that didn’t make the cut were those that didn’t fit the anthology’s theme to one degree or another. Even once I got past those, I was still left with more stories than would fit. So, the decisions became harder. Finally, after much agonizing, debate between the voices in my head, and even a few gut calls, I assembled what I believed to be the strongest table of contents.

Though I can’t yet reveal the final list here until the publisher signs off on everything, I will say that if you read the Star Trek fiction then you’ll recognize several names. More than one member of Pocket Books’ Trek stable is present…a salty vet or two along with several newer voices from the Strange New Worlds contests. Several writers from a list I was given by Flying Pen Press and who were invited to submit also number among the selections. I’d never read anything written by most of those folks, but two of my favorite stories ended up coming from that camp. Now, whether the anthology ends up being “good” is not to be decided by me, but I will say I’m satisfied with how things are shaping up at this point.

Regardless of how the book ends up being received, I will take away some interesting lessons from my first go as an editor. Whether I get a chance to utilize my “new skills” in the future remains to be seen, but I’m certainly having fun with them right now.