Excerpt: American Rebirth PREQUEL!

Excerpt: American Rebirth PREQUEL!

I need your input, peoples.

  1. I want to know what you think of this excerpt. It’s a prequel of the American Rebirth Series.  Email me, tweet me, DM me, whatever, let me know what you think!
  2. I need to know if you are interested in a prequel. It would cover the SHTF scenario, and go into the Clearwater era. Hood and Whiskey and Taylor in the early Clearwater days.

 

Your feedback is important! I have a desire to write this story, but I want to know from my readers if this is something they’d be interested in.

So here you have it. Enjoy!


Abandoned Home, South of Washington D.C., Rural Maryland.

Sunlight poured into the dusty living room. The hinges of the front door groaned as it slowed to a stop. The old wood floors flexed and creaked under each step. Rob Huntington could picture what life in this house once looked like. An old retired couple, maybe. A young family that moved out into the country. No, it was left behind too clean. No mess. No kids.
The pistol was warm in his grip. Slide locked back. Fired empty. He placed it on an antique sideboard, the weight of it clunking against the lacquered wood.
I am not a killer. Rob pulled the ornate white cloth off of the sideboard, his hands still shaking. He scrubbed at his skin. The blood smudged and smeared, it wouldn’t entirely come off.
He breathed in deep, the musty smell somehow having a calming effect on him. It was not familiar. He’d never been here before. Never even been in this part of the state. But it smelled like a home. There’s no going back to the way things were.
He closed his eyes, standing in the center of the hallway. The past was dead. That was always true. You can never go back. But it meant something different now. You came in here for a reason. You need to find something else to fight with. His feet carried him through the house without thought. There had to be something he could use. The very need for this search told him a truth he did not want to face. This won’t be the last time. You will have to kill again.
Mounted on a wall in the den sat an old bolt-action rifle. There. Below it, almost shrine-like, on a mantelpiece was a trifold American flag in a wooden case, a name engraved on it. Pierce Ploman. Rob moved towards it reverently. The only sound was the creak of his footsteps and the distant carefree cries of faraway birds from the open door. Gently he reached out to touch the rifle and lifted it off its mount, the old leather strap swaying free in the air.
The rifle was old. But it was oiled and well taken care of. His eyes went from the trigger to the firing mechanism, seeing faded words stamped into the metal. Model and make, surely. He didn’t know what they meant. He ran his thumb over them, feeling the imprint in the steel. How does this thing work? Rob pulled back on the bolt sticking out of the rifle, but it didn’t move. He pushed up, and it came free to move. He pulled it back and the action slid open. Do I put each round in one at a time? The metal plate underneath the open chamber seemed separate from the rest. He pushed down on it, and it gave way, a spring below pushing it up. The rounds must go in there. Feed into the chamber. He pushed the bolt forward and locked it down. He pulled it up again and back, repeating the cocking motion until it felt smooth. He hefted it to his shoulder, looking down the ironsights. You’re going to have to use this, he repeated to himself.
He clenched his teeth, his mouth a hard line. One hand found its way to his face, covering his eyes. He rubbed his eyebrows back and forth, rhythmically.
“Rob?” Taylor called inside.
“Yeah,” He called back, standing upright and taking a deep breath.
“Are you okay?”
He nodded to himself. “Yeah. I’m fine.”
“Did you find anything?”
“We need to look around for some ammo. See if there’s any food, too.”
Taylor appeared from around the corner into the den. The pistol he left in the living room was in her hand. She followed his eyes to it, holding it up in the air sheepishly.
“We’ll probably need this, if we can find more bullets for it,” she said calmly. She looked at the rifle in his hands. “Does that work?”
Rob nodded. “Yeah, I think so.”
“Hey, are you okay?” She repeated in an even, relaxed tone that calmed him. “You can talk to me.”
“I’m good, Sis…” He hesitated, before shaking his head in disbelief. “How the hell did this happen?”
She smiled at him, a warm, familial smile. “Hey. We’re still alive.”
He flashed a smile back at her in return.
“Thank you,” she said genuinely. “For doing what you had to.”
He met her gaze. “We’ll be alright.”
She nodded toward the door. “Come on. Let’s see what else we can find.”
Rob looked down at the rifle in his hand. I have to protect her. I can’t hesitate next time. It’s either that or we’ll be the ones lying there.
His feet carried him out of the room. What about all those people that are just like us, though? Trying to survive in this fucked up version of the world?
Rob pushed a toy truck lying on the floor out of his way with his feet.
God, how did we let things come to this?

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11,315 Days.

11,315 Days.

Thirty-one.

It’s hard to believe sometimes. Happy birthday to me, 11,315 days of life. And there’s no guarantee i’ll get any more than that.

I’m grateful for all of them. For all the things that have gone wrong, my life has been pretty incredible. I’ve got a lot to be thankful for.

I think I’ll list them here.

  • The people I love. Family, friends, the great loves of my life.
  • My books. My love of storytelling, of imagination, of history.
  • My health. I feel young, stronger than I ever have before, and largely unhindered.
  • My curiosity. I’ve been gifted with a love of learning, of enjoying new things, of reveling in growth. It’s made my life a lot of fun and painless in many ways.
  • My pride. I feel proud of who I am, of the light in bring into other people’s lives just by being who I am (I know that sounds arrogant as fuck) and the pride I take in the choices I’ve made and the things I have done. Even the mistakes. Even the big ones.
  • The world. Because it’s gorgeous, endlessly interesting, tragic and beautiful all at the same time. Getting a chance to live life is so incredible.

I was thinking today about just having the chance to live, and how improbable that is. How many people, how many bloodlines died out just to the path of history? How many near misses were there where your ancestors might have died before they could conceive the next generation have their been?

Just our very existence here is a marvel of probability, an incredible gift, a confluence of chance and love.

I don’t plan on wasting it.

Have a good one, everyone. I know I will. Happy birthday to me.

-Evan P.

 

 

Results: One Month After Publishing Book 3

Results: One Month After Publishing Book 3

It’s been almost a month since I released American Rebirth. 

And I’m pretty damn happy.

I’d always heard that getting the third book out there is a pretty significant milestone. Especially for a series. I’d heard, and hoped.

Hood sold like hotcakes when I published it. Legends did fairly well, but nothing like the first time around.

…Turns out the third time IS the charm.

I’m happy to report that I’ve basically quadrupled my daily sales average since American Rebirth was released.

And it seems to be just gaining momentum, seeing very steady numbers per day. We’ll see how it continues to go moving forward, but I think they’ll move pretty well. I love the new covers, and I think I’ve done solid work on the blurbs. And people tend to like things in threes. Something about the trilogy feel seems to just feel complete for readers.

And again, this book isn’t the end of the line for the series/universe. Not at all. But these three books are a complete story arc. No cliffhanger nonsense at the end of American Rebirth. What’s great too, is I really have done very little in terms of marketing. This has been mostly organic. I really need to find some more dedicated marketing channels, but for now I’m psyched with the results.

A REQUEST TO MY READERS:

So, if there’s one thing I do want, it’s feedback. You’d do me a huge favor by leaving a review or emailing/messaging me on social media. To all those who have read my books: if you haven’t already left a review or dropped me a line on social media, please do if you feel so inclined! I’d love to hear from you. I’d love to hear both what you liked and didn’t like. It’s really fun for me to hear what people thought. You pour so much into these books and at least for me, all I really want is to hear what people think.

So please, if you want to make this author happy, give me some feedback.

Alright everyone, be well, enjoy the last vestiges of the weekend.

Evan P.

 

A Promise is A Promise…Book 3 is Done

A Promise is A Promise…Book 3 is Done

A promise is a promise. I said I’d get the book done by the end of this week. And even if I came screeching up to the deadline…

American Rebirth, Book 3 of the American Rebirth series is finally finished.

americanrebirth_1

It’s hard to believe this day has come…

I’m submitting it to Amazon tonight. It might take a few days, but soon it will be live for sale. I’ll push it out to all the other distributors in the next few days.

I feel kind of numb, floaty, like nothing really make sense yet. It hasn’t hit me, and it probably won’t for awhile.

Like all writers, I am currently in that manic state of excitement to get it out, and fear that it somehow isn’t ready or isn’t good enough. But I must kick that feeling in the face, and trust the work I and others have done to help make this book what it is.

And it is time.

For all you readers who waited patiently, thank you. I really can’t wait for you all to read it.

And if you really want to make me happy, leave a review when you’re done. Whatever you think of it. Even if it’s just a bunch of stabby emojis.

Now I [try and] rest.

-Evan Pickering

HOOD on Sale for 0.99$ In Honor of BOOK 3 Upcoming Launch!

HOOD on Sale for 0.99$ In Honor of BOOK 3 Upcoming Launch!

So I finished the last few touches on my first edit of AMERICAN REBIRTH, Book 3 of the American Rebirth Series, and gave it to my beta readers.

Soon, very soon, Book 3 will be live for all you wonderful maniacs to read. Depending on how much I have to edit on my second pass, it could be here within the month.

In Honor of that upcoming release, I’m putting HOOD, Book 1 of the American Rebirth Series on sale for 0.99$!

So for all you new to my stuff, here’s a chance to check out my style for a buck. That’s so cheap I kind of want to arrest myself.

Oh, and for those of you new to my site, you may be here because of your signup for the BookSweeps post-apoc Ebook giveaway. So welcome!

Alright, that’s it y’all. Short and sweet. Is it Friday yet? Tomorrow I’m going out to queens and I’m gonna drink many beers.

-Evan P.

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It’s Done…

It’s Done…

As of last night, around midnight…

…The draft of American Rebirth is done.

It’s about 90,200 words. That’s sure to change after editing.

I don’t know if all the feels have hit me yet. I don’t think the full high will come until this shit is done and launched. But still, for me… I just gotta take a minute and say something.

I’m truly proud of this series.

It hasn’t always been easy. It’s been mostly NOT easy, to be honest. But seeing the ending of this book, and well this arc of the series (I have a feeling i’ll be writing more stories in the American Rebirth universe.) it’s a hard feeling to put into words.

All three of these books are strongly connected, all a part of one complete narrative about who we are as individuals, as a race, and what the fuck it is to make of this thing we call existence. I’ve always loved post-apoc because it lays that bare. There’s nothing but survival and the things that really matter.

All the garbage priorities we lay on top of our lives living in a functioning civilization gets stripped away. The people at the end of the world, or at least, the people who face the collapse of great civilizations, like those in the dark ages, have to face the reality of what actually matters:

Who are we to ourselves? who are we to each other? Both as strangers, as loved ones, and as enemies?

I wanted to do a lot of things with this series, but ultimately, that’s the biggest picture. I can say having finished book 3, I feel I’ve answered that. In my way.

I really can’t wait for you all to read it.

What’s next: I have to edit it. I’ll give it to a few close beta readers I trust. Then I do one more pass, and then it’s live.

We’re almost there.

-Evan Pickering

It’s Coming…It’s Almost Here…

It’s Coming…It’s Almost Here…

GET HYPED.

americanrebirth_1

The cover for Book 3 is hot off the presses, thanks to Jeff Brown Graphics. Jeff was awesome to work with for these new covers for the books, and I absolutely love they way the cover for American Rebirth came out.

PROGRESS UPDATE:

In the category of great news, I’m very near completing the first draft. I’m at about 75,000 words. The book should probably be a little north of 80,000 when it’s done.

Once it’s done, I’ll get to work editing, run it by my beta readers, and it’ll be on the [virtual] shelves.

I’m so freakin’ excited. I’m ready for it to be out there. It’s been a long time coming.

Unfortunately I was stricken with the flu a few weeks ago so it slowed down my progress, but I’m rolling now. I want to see if I can finish the draft by the weekend, which would make me a very happy panda. Even if it’s not totally done, the progress I’ve made this week filled me with joy.

COMING SOON:

I’m taking part in a post-apoc giveaway promo in a few days, and I may be releasing American Rebirth for pre-order a few weeks in advance. I have yet to decide if that’s strategically the best option for me but I’ll let you know. Ah the glamorous life of Self-pub. Really, though, I love it.

Enjoy your weekend y’all!

-Evan P.