Tuesday, October 11, 2016


On October 13th, 2016, tomorrow
A Convenient Marriage will be released.
It tells the story of two ordinary people with seemingly ordinary problems, for which they found a rather unique solution.
Desperation pushes people into drastic action. Holly had to do something if she wanted to see her kids again and didn’t quibble much against her friends’ unusual help. Joshua had nothing to lose as his fiancée of four years didn’t seem all that keen on getting married anyway. So Holly and Joshua got married for the convenience to both of them.
But their marriage, which was supposed to be one big act, met with all round resistance—from Joshua’s mother, his fiancée, and of all things, a ghost who didn’t seem very happy about it. Coupled with an attraction they hadn’t taken into account at the planning stage,
where was this all going to end?
A Convenient Marriage is a paranormal romance, set in South Africa.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

The Nettle Tree Blog Tour

Strangely Different Stories … 

What you'll find on the back cover:

The Nettle Tree, edited by Kenneth Weene and Clayton Bye, is a collection of genre stretching and busting stories by some of the most talented writers we have. Their challenge was to write strangely different western stories in a format of 3,000 words or less and to take you to places traditional westerns have never taken you. We think they have succeeded admirably. And with powerhouse writers, some known and others whom readers will find delightful discoveries, you will not be disappointed. Our thanks to Chase Enterprises Publishing for making this anthology possible.

The Nettle Tree is the third annual anthology of strangely different stories released by Chase Enterprises Publishing. The first book in the series was Writers on the Wrong Side of the Road, a collection of strangely different general fiction from writers around the world. Following on the heels of this well received anthology came The Speed of Dark, a collection of strangely different horror stories. This book won four awards, with the title story The Speed of Dark winning an honourable mention in the Writer’s Digest annual fiction contest. The four awards were This year’s offering, The Nettle Tree, is a collection of strangely different western stories.
The point of each of these anthologies is to stretch or break the genre of choice, while still leaving the stories recognizable as the original genre.

The Authors 

Jeremy C. Shipp

Jeremy C. Shipp is the Bram Stoker Award- nominated author of Cursed, Vacation, and In The Fishbowl, We Bleed. His shorter tales have appeared in over 60 publications, the likes of Cemetery Dance, ChiZine, Apex Magazine, Withersin, and Shroud Magazine. His twitter handle is @JeremyCShipp.

Phil Richardson

Phil Richardson writes speculative fiction, horror, mystery, and literary fiction often with a humorous bent. He is retired from Ohio University where he met his wife in a creative writing class. He has published two collections of short stories: Little Bits of Out There, and Little Bits of Darkness, and over 80 stories online and in print including 21 in anthologies. Two of his stories were nominated for the Pushcart Prize. His website, PhilRichardsonStories.com, has links to many of his stories and to his website describing his Navy experiences in the Antarctic.

Casey June Wolf

Casey June Wolf is a writer of occasional poems and speculative fiction stories that range from moody slipstream to hard science fiction. She is a fairly incompetent rider but nevertheless loves the view from a horse’s back, especially when that view is the hinterland of mountainous British Columbia. “Fog” is dedicated to her mum, Lorraine, who introduced her to both science fiction and westerns—and everything else that’s fit to print. Casey lives in East Van, BC. Read her musings and find links to her work at Another Fine Day in the Scriptorium: http://finedayscriptorium.blogspot.ca (And check out other anthologies from Clayton Bye—you may find a story or three of hers in them, too.)

John Rosenman

John was born in Cleveland, Ohio, and he is a retired English professor from Norfolk State University in Norfolk, Va. He has published three hundred stories in The Speed of Dark, Weird Tales, Whitley Strieber's Aliens, Galaxy, The Age of Wonders, and elsewhere. In addition, he has published over twenty books, including SF novels such as Speaker of the Shakk and Beyond Those Distant Stars, winner of AllBooks Review Editor’s Choice Award (Mundania Press), and Alien Dreams, A Senseless Act of Beauty, and (YA) The Merry-Go-Round Man (Crossroad Press).
MuseItUp Publishing has published six SF novels. They are Dark Wizard; Dax Rigby, War Correspondent, and four in the Inspector of the Cross series: Inspector of the
Cross, Kingdom of the Jax, Defender of the Flame, and Conqueror of the Stars. MuseItUp has also published The Blue of Her Hair, The Gold of Her Eyes (winner of Preditor’s and Editor’s 2011 Annual Readers Poll), More Stately Mansions, and the dark erotic thrillers Steam Heat and Wet Dreams. Musa Publishing gave his time travel story “Killers” their 2013 Editor’s Top Pick award. Some of John’s books are available as audio books from Audible.com.
Two of John’s major themes are the endless, mind-stretching wonders of the universe and the limitless possibilities of transformation and transfiguration—sexual, cosmic, and otherwise. He is the former Chairman of the Board of the Horror Writers Association and the previous editor of Horror Magazine. The Turtan Trilogy is available at http://amzn.to/20DEA9i

Christopher Wolf

I was born in Long Beach California and grew up in a Military family. I spent most of my life bouncing between California and Arizona, finally ending up in Phoenix in my late teens. I had planned from an early age to join the United States Army and following in my family’s footsteps. Fate would intervene, however, and in the seventh grade I found myself in a full leg cast due to an A.T.C. accident. Finding myself unable to run, my career plans were no longer an option.
At sixteen I dropped out of high school. I got my G.E.D. at nineteen and with no direction spent the rest of my life drifting from crappy job to crappy job. About five years ago I taught myself how to write to combat the boredom of being a night security guard on fire watch. I’ve self-published three books on Amazon, and I’m continuing to tap away on the keyboard in the hope that people find my stories entertaining.

Clayton Clifford Bye

Clayton Bye is an eclectic writer whose body of work spans a period of more than 20 years and includes such classics as How To Get What You Want From Life, The Sorcerer’s Key and The Contrary Canadian. His more recent work involves too many ghostwrites to count and some great anthologies from his publishing house Chase Enterprises Publishing. The Speed of Dark, a strangely different collection of horror short stories, won four awards and solid 5 star reviews. To check out Clayton’s work, visit http://shop.claytonbye.com.

Leigh M. Lane

In addition to writing dark speculative fiction for over twenty-five years, Leigh M. Lane has dabbled in fine arts, earned a black belt in karate, and sung lead and backup vocals for bands ranging from classic rock to the blues. She currently lives in the dusty outskirts of Sin City with her husband, an editor and educator, and one very spoiled cat.
Her published works include traditional Gothic horror novel Finding Poe; the World- Mart trilogy; and the dark allegorical tale, Myths of Gods.

Richard Godwin

Richard Godwin is the critically acclaimed author of Apostle Rising, Mr. Glamour, One Lost Summer, Noir City, Meaningful Conversations, Confessions Of A Hit Man, Paranoia And The Destiny Programme, Wrong Crowd, Savage Highway, Ersatz World, The Pure And The Hated, Disembodied, Buffalo And Sour Mash and Locked In Cages. His stories have been published in numerous paying magazines and over 34 anthologies, among them an anthology of his stories, Piquant: Tales Of The Mustard Man, and The Mammoth Book Of Best British Crime and The Mammoth Book Of Best British Mystery, alongside Lee Child.
He was born in London and lectured in English and American literature at the University of London. Find out more about him at his website www.richardgodwin.net , where you can read a full list of his works, and where you can also read his Chin Wags At The Slaughterhouse, his highly popular and unusual interviews with other authors.

Salvatore Buttaci

Salvatore Buttaci is an obsessive-compulsive writer whose poems, stories, articles, and letters have appeared widely in publications that include New York Times, The Writer, Writer’s Digest, Cats Magazine, The National Enquirer, and Christian Science Monitor. An English instructor at a local community college and middle-school teacher in New Jersey, he retired in 2007 to commit himself to full-time writing.
Two of his flash collections, published by All Things That Matter Press, are available at Amazon.com. Another of his books, still selling well, is A Family of Sicilians … http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/B uttaciPublishing2008

Buttaci resides in West Virginia with his wife Sharon.

Ken Weene

“The best part of being a writer is the endless opportunity to do life over. The worst part is knowing that I still won’t get it right.” With that motto in mind, Kenneth Weene offers an ongoing stream of books, short stories, poems, and essays. Visit http://www.kennethweene.com to find more of his work.

Tonya R. Moore

Tonya R. Moore is a Public Safety professional from Bradenton, Florida with a penchant for writing speculative fiction. Stories by Tonya R. Moore have been published in the Writers on the Wrong Side of the Road and The Speed of Dark anthologies. Her current projects include Flash Fiction on Patreon, the Spec-Fic Trifecta Podcast, and her space opera novel- in-progress, The Advent of Hegira.
Tonya grew up reading books by phenomenal authors such as niverseIsaac Asimov, Ray Bradbury, Larry Niven and Anne McCaffrey. Their works portrayed space- faring humans and unbelievable creatures having fantastic adventures in distant future and far-flung regions of the
universe. She fell in love with the remarkable characters and worlds those authors envisioned. Those stories fueled her desire to write.

Tonya is a fan of anime, manga, and all things spec-fic. She is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Communication.
Website: www.tonyarmoore.com

Kenny Wilson

Kenny Wilson is a retired attorney who moved to Arizona in 2011. He continues to write appellate briefs for practicing attorneys which require adherence to strict formatting and word count requirements. Such writing compels a tight style that he carries over to write flash fiction and short stories. Painstaking research is incorporated for historical accuracy, a necessity for appellate advocacy. Each piece is redrafted at least twenty times, until it is honed to essentials.
Kenny enjoys his adopted state by hiking and studying its history. He describes writing as: “like making moonshine; you distill a potent juice out of a vat of goo.” He makes every word count.

Jim Secor

Jim Secor has traveled the world, living, working and studying in Japan, China and Kansas. He continued his study of language use and origins, myths/folktales and various forms of
presentation, both theatrical (where he began) and in print. In this comparative lit environment, European Medieval lit and Japanese theater have had the greater influence but through it all is the figure of the trickster, the trickster hero, a character with a foot in two worlds, often enough laughing in the face of social and cultural norms. . .and every so often getting caught in his own net of foolishness.
Jim Secor is, in this, a profligate trickster of language: the magic and mystery and open-ended quality of language is his reality. Because, from its beginnings, language the multifaceted and metaphoric predominated
It is, indeed, a symbol in itself. Ergo, the result must needs be metaphoric.
This magicalness of language requires a broad and exacting craftsmanship, which enables him to create scope and depth and a plotting that is not as prosaic or as straightforward as one might expect. Another important feature of Jim Secor's writing--one that comes from Japanese Kyōgen--is the use of verbs to create descriptions instead of the more usual nouns and adjectives. This emphasis on action as the engine of description enables him to typify his characters without a lot of dry description. What people look like is simply not important to his take on characterization, for he engages the reader's imagination instead of leaving it fallow passive earth in need of being told what to do with itself.

A few reviews - and there are many!

Review by David Donaldson, 07/12/2016, 5 Stars
The Nettle Tree is a fantastic collection of short westerns, with stories ranging from the standard sheriff and outlaw to the zombie apocalypse to computer simulation. Every story is its own adventure, and left me wanting more. I would recommend this collection to anyone, as fans of western, sci-fi, and fantasy will all find something to enjoy. As a major fan of the sci-fi genre, the combination of sci-fi settings with old fashioned western style story telling was a welcome change of pace, one I would very much like to see more of.

Reviewed By Maria Beltran for Readers’ Favorite
Review Rating: 5 stars!

It is not very often that one comes across a genuinely unique book, but this is what editors Kenneth Weene and Clayton Clifford Bye created in The Nettle Tree. The titles in this anthology take readers through many different settings, characters, and elements that no one has probably taken them before, and in thirteen different stories. The major theme is western, but it comes in different forms and genres like horror, science fiction, fantasy, science fantasy, magical realism and even alternative history.

The Nettle Tree, edited by Kenneth Weene and Clayton Bye, is a compilation of works by thirteen gifted writers who were each tasked to write 3,000 words, and genre shattering western stories. The result is a unique anthology of fiction that will not fail to entertain its readers. From The Carousel to The Nettle Tree to the Devil Tracker, we are confronted by unlikely characters navigating through strange circumstances and emotions that stretch the imagination more than anyone would think possible.

The Sheriff of Hog Waller is perhaps the easiest to read, but this does not mean the story is lacking in layers. In State of the Art, reality, technology and fantasy are deftly blended together that it becomes a difficult task to identify one from the other. And the caustic humor in A Hero Comes to Town is indeed a fitting end to a day spent with a book that you would definitely want to finish in one sitting. Reading this book is truly a strange and amazing experience!

The book can be purchased here :

or here:  http://shop.claytonbye 

Book Details:
Title: The Nettle Tree
Publisher: Chase Enterprises Publishing
Editors: Kenneth Weene and Clayton Bye
ISBN (print): 978-1-927915-10-3
ISBN (eBook): 978-1-927915-11-0
Format: Trade Paperback and eBook
Pages: 166
Genre: Speculative western
Price: $17.95 (print) $3.95 (eBook)

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Featured Author - Nicole D'Settemi

Addictarium by Nicole D'Settēmi

When creative spirit, and inhabitant of bohemia--Danielle Martino--starts to lose her eyesight from shooting a poisoned bag of heroin, she flees to New York City for surgery, and then to rehab. However, the two-year intensive drug recovery therapy program is more intense than anything she could have anticipated, and Danielle finds herself searching for purpose, sanity, and sobriety in this “addictarium,”--or as she likes to call it; a house of broken souls.



Nicole D'Settēmi is a 34 year old creative writer, poet, and artist from Niagara Falls, New York. Born in a tiny town bordering Canada only five minutes from the legendary falls, Nicole says she had an eye for beauty at a young age, and that included poetry. She can remember from an age as young as six, being selected as part of the city’s "young authors club." She was interested in lyric poetry from the time she was a pre-teen into her early-to-mid-twenties, and moved into creative writing and fiction in her late twenties and early thirties.
Addictarium was penned while Nicole spent time in an intensive rehabilitation center due to a devastating heroin addiction, and while this is a fictional memoir, many of the themes and tales are based around her own experiences during her two year stay in the notorious Queens, New York “therapeutic community.”
In April of 2010, Nicole lost 95% of her eyesight due to a poisoned bag of heroin she had injected, and was shipped to Manhattan’s Bellevue hospital 1,600 miles away from her city at the time, which was in South Florida, where she had been attending an art institute for photojournalism. She was forced to drop the courses, as she began a new, sober life in New York City.
Nicole was also separated from her fiancé and co-conspirator in 2010, while recuperating in Daytop Village. At that time, she was introduced to her current fiancé, who is also mentioned throughout the novel as the substance abuse counselor she fell in love with.
Today, both artists run a modest business creatively assisting others, and continue to hone their fine arts abilities, in their art studio and living quarters, residing in Pleasant Valley, New York. With their creative assistance-based company; LCDS Creative Services, they’ve dedicated a division to publishing novels, named; The Book House of Seviles. They look forward to venturing further into the writing and publishing world, in 2017.

 Motivation for Writing this book

There are many reasons one sits down to write and tell their story. For me, the biggest motivation in writing Addictarium, was more than just desire from being a writer from the time I was born. Yes, I’d been writing my whole life, and yes I had one amazing story to tell, but what really pushed me into the direction of writing Addictarium was one main thing: to tell the truth about recovery.
I have read so many stories, memoirs, articles, letters, and more, when it comes to an addiction and what one’s suffered through because of said-addiction. What many seem to do, is provide the roller coaster--a story with the severe, haunting-at-times--lows, and the highest highs. Such as gaining sobriety; and the pink cloud that follows.
When I sat down to write Addictarium I knew that for me, dissolving the delusion that sobriety is some kind of automatic cure, was imperative. I wanted people to be prepared for a very difficult battle, with a killer opponent. I knew when I wrote Addictarium, I had to highlight how traumatic a life lost to addiction, truly is. I wrote with determination and passion, centering my story around the personality of the addict, and why the cognitive behaviors of an addict are, absolutely, some things that need to be identified. Genetics, conditioning--many things play part in addiction, however, the personality of the addict is the key to wellness. An addictive personality isn’t just addicted to one substance, the addictive personality can get addicted to anything, and so it’s detrimental to heal inwardly before anything, otherwise the person suffering from this disease is sure to relapse.
Therapy is essential, and behavioral therapy is a huge plus, and shove in the right direction. I do believe that there are many other contributing factors, but teaching an addict on how to gain some self-awareness just may be the one key ingredient to that person's permanent awakening.
I think that I also penned Addictarium to really shed light on what a person is forced to live with, if they choose an addict’s lifestyle. I went completely blind in my right eye, and could have lost sight in my left, but luckily my condition was treated before that happened. I wanted to share with the world that there are things aside from overdose that can be equally devastating, and the difference is that one will be stuck living with these things. Think twice before you decide to put a needle in your arm, or whatever drug it is that you use, in whatever way. Life is not required to be simple or fair, and that’s something that really needs to be grasped. None of us are immortal, or invincible, so survival cannot be achieved while one is active in drug abuse. I think that is what I really want to get across to the world.

Nicole D'Settēmi
Author of Addictarium
A drug abuse & recovery memoir


"Come on, Danielle!" Karen shouted over the raging winds, which were both loud and aggressive, due to April's unpredictable weather. We were scurrying down the wooden planks along the boardwalk, five minutes from our community. Karen, who was drenched in a thick, mauve turtle neck, and a pair of furry, suede boots, ran awkwardly about two feet ahead of me, her left leg shorter than the right making her look funny. She laughed loudly, nearly tumbling over, her voice ringing through the air, despite the howl of the heavy winds. I followed, out of breath, trying to inhale the last of a cheap, fat menthol cigar. Black-and-Mild’s, the box said, and they were delicious. Strong, and intense, scorching the back of my throat, just the way I needed something to be. We continued to run, as we laughed even harder. Tear drops were streaming down my face from my watery eyes, with the sun luminous and bright, but the weather still quite cold, at least for spring.
"I think I see her!" she shouted, referring to our mutual acquaintance August Delgado, who as always, was surrounded by a small cluster of people, all of them off into the distance. They were all people who lived in our Therapeutic Community; a long-term addiction-recovery program, named Safe Haven Village, or The Village as I liked to call it, because Greenwich had nothing on this place, it was a complete circus, a regular freak show by all definitions of the word.
We both squinted to see further, but we didn't really know what we were seeing. We were higher than one of these New York City skyscrapers, tripping on acid that August had given us. Rockaway beach was five minutes from our community, so we decided to search for our dear friend, sure we had found her, but not so sure it was actually her, given the acid was really starting to kick in. As we neared just a little bit closer, we began to laugh giddily, as we could now see her waving erratically, heading towards us with two black guys, one of her comrades several sizes larger than any of us. We ran fast and furiously towards the rocks they were situated on, screaming and throwing our arms everywhere, as if none of us had seen the other for days on end. She caught up to us, moments later, all of us panting and out of breath, as we hugged one another, laughing gleefully.
"This acid's pretty wavy dude," August remarked, her mouth against my ear as she embraced me, "very mellow, it's like it takes ya on a long car ride into the country, a long car ride with excellent scenery," she added, as I could feel a slow, lazy smile spreading across her face, and I knew the acid was clearly hitting her as well. I felt her lumpy dreads in my hands, and realized I was still holding onto her. We let go of each other, and we both laughed again.
"What's the plan for tonight?" she asked us, looking back and forth between the two of us, her lively eyes twinkling with mischief. Oh, Karen and I, we had plans alright. We looked at each other and smiled, but said nothing.
"Okay we'll leave it at that," she told us grinning, as the two guys finally caught up to where we were standing. I smiled and said hello, and we all slapped hands.
"We actually have to get ready," Karen told her, as we lit a couple of cigarettes, and passed them between the five of us.
August slid her hand into her grey hooded jacket, three sizes two big, and pulled out a little piece of plastic cellophane. "Here's two more," she said blowing smoke through her nose, and then, finally out of her mouth. She handed me the small packet, and I laid it in my palm, delicately sizing it up.
"You women are crazy, I mean we are in treatment after all," Stefan, one of the guys, with a crisp, British accent, said. The other guy nodded in agreement, and then laughed, as he watched me eyeball Stefan's hand, raising an eyebrow. Between his fingers, he held a joint, which I already knew was filled with K-2, a new, hip form of synthetic weed, that no treatment programs were testing for.
"What? This? This is nothing!" Stefan said with a dismissive hand, but even as he said it, he had to laugh at his own audacity.
"They don't test for acid either," I pointed out.
His friend shook his head, "yeah, but that shit crazy, yo. Put you straight in the ward!"
"Thanks," Karen piped in impatiently, "but we have to get ready now."
"Have fun, you two," August told us, picking at a barrette that was attached to one of her dreads.


When the person purchases Addictarium's ebook for $4.99 they have a chance to win:

Prize #1 - A subscription from mazagines.com for any 1 selection of reading material they pick (a 1 year subscription)
Prize #2 - A $10 giftcard for Barnes & Nobles, and a signed photo-card of "Addictarium"
Prize #3 - A free ebook of their choice on Kindle (not to exceed $9.99 for the ebook) and a signed/framed photo-card of "Addictarium"
Prize #4 - An official "Addictarium Writer's Gift basket" (includes gifts geared towards writing & Addictarium memorabilia

Please email lcdscreativeservices@gmail.com, after the purchase with the email receipt and have a chance to win these amazing prizes.