Reese Eddings has enough to do just keeping her rattletrap merchant vessel, the TMS Earthrise, profitable enough to pay food for herself and her micro-crew. So when a mysterious benefactor from her past shows up demanding she rescue a man from slavers, her first reaction is to say "NO!" And then to remember that she sort of promised to repay the loan. But she doesn't remember signing up to tangle with pirates and slavers over a space elf prince…
In my first year on Kickstarter, I ran four campaigns. All four succeeded; in fact, all four overfunded, some by over 400%. I am not a media superstar. I am, at best, a very energetic indie author and freelance painter. But even a small fish can make a big splash in the Kickstarter pond.
"Great tips for Kickstarter"
With the Eldritch civil war over, a castle to renovate, and a wedding to prepare for, the last thing Reese is thinking about is taking a break. But the New Year is coming and the Eldritch take their holidays very seriously, so Reese decides it can't hurt to observe the local proprieties. Who knows? Maybe it'll make good practice for what Felith is calling the wedding of the century. Of course, that was before Reese realized it was going to involve gifts. And decorating. And a town full of recalcitrant Eldritch tenants.
When the results of Earth's genetic experiments fled from their makers, they took their own name as they left humanity behind; centuries later, the Pelted have spread into a multi-world alliance of cultures and languages, cribbed from Terra or created whole-cloth. Claws and Starships collects six stories of the Pelted, ranging from the humor of a xenoanthropologist on the wrong side of mythology to more serious works considering the implications of genetic engineering in a far-future classroom.
Ten years after she graduated from the Fleet Academe at Terracentrus, Alysha Forrest was captain of the battlecruiser UAV Stardancer with more honor to her name than any other officer her age. But before that dawn there was a night, and it is in the darkness that souls are made...or broken.
Ensign Taylitha Basil wasn't sure what to expect when her ship dropped her off at the officer training retreat at Quickwater Preserve. A hike up the mountain? She's not much of a hiker. A trip down it in a canoe? Even worse, she's not a great swimmer. An obnoxious peer who put himself in charge? An and Bast preserve her. But all of that seems manageable when she meets Alysha Forrest, one of the Diamondwing's ensigns. In years to come they would serve together on the Stardancer as an unbeatable command team.
Reese is only just getting used to running the Earthrise in the black-and with an Eldritch in her crew-when a trip to a colony world gives rise to a whole new problem: Hirianthial is showing powers that even the Eldritch rarely have, and that only in legend. He badly needs training, support and advice, and the only place he can find them is... at home. To see the world of the Eldritch is a once in a lifetime opportunity, a thing of fantasies and rumor. And to finally meet the Eldritch Queen, the author of so many of Reese's windfalls!
"Slow, very slow"
The Queen of the Eldritch has offered Reese Eddings a life out of a fairy tale, one beyond the imagination of a poor girl from Mars. Unfortunately, the day Reese reached out to accept Liolesa's offer, Hirianthial's enemies betrayed him - and his entire planet - to a race of sociopathic shapeshifters with dreams of conquest. To beat them, Reese will have to own the power she's always denied herself, and Hirianthial must make peace with his bloody past.
The Alliance has sent twelve ambassadors to the Chatcaavan Empire, all twelve returned early, defeated. None of their number have been successful at taking that brutal empire to task for their violations of the treaty. None have survived the vicious court of a race of winged shapechangers, one maintained by cruelty, savagery and torture. Lisinthir Nase Galare is the Alliance's thirteenth emissary. A duelist, an esper and a prince of his people, he has been sent to bring an empire to heel.
After ferrying supplies to thirty-nine space stations, First Commander Taylitha Basil of the UAV Stardancer is ready to move on to something less dull... but it turns out the station commander at their final stop is a great sword-fighter, funny, handsome, interesting... And also human, one of the species that engineered her own race long ago. What do you feel about the people who played God?
Captain Isidore Wyatt, new transfer to the Alliance Fleet from the Terran Space Navy, is still getting used to having engineered aliens for officers when he's called to investigate a possible pirate vessel. Except not everything is what it seems, and these pirates have ambitions above and beyond the norm....
"It Was GREAT!!! :-) !!! (-:"
When the UAV Scattersky answers a distress call, their captain is expecting a routine rescue operation and dispatches his first commander, Alysha Forrest, to manage the transfer of personnel. But naturally, things are never as easy as they seem on the surface.
Mistress Commander Angharad Godkin hates politics, so of course, her ruler the Godson sent her to replace the Governor of barely tamed Shraeven province. She hates religion, so naturally, the native gods began to plague her the moment she arrived. And since she hates both, the gods started playing politics - and the politicians began playing at godhood.
Captain Alysha Forrest is taking advantage of leave to do a little holiday shopping at the largest mall in the Alliance's summer capital... when a little boy gets into a little trouble. A holiday feel-good story from the Pelted universe.
For the Ai-Naidar, a species of slim, gracile aliens, caste and tradition are not the shackles that imprison the spirit but the silences that make sense of the music of their lives. The Aphorisms of Kherishdar collects 25 short tales about what it is to have an Ai-Naidari soul: to find comfort in tradition, law and structure; to revere interdependence over individualism; to know one's place... to always have one.
The pirate lioness Mazalaen has survived by pretending to be a man, a murderer and a thief... and fears she has become those things in truth. Until she meets a fearless princess in battle. Could this woman be her salvation? Originally published in Anthrolations.
Kediil wants only to remain neuter and learn the secrets of herbs from its beloved Mardin. But upon reaching second puberty, Kediil turns female, and is forced to decide between accepting her new role in the family...or something unspeakable.
The high priest of Shame in Kherishdar is shattering - and the only thing between him and his ruin is the gentle Calligrapher, Farren Nai'Sheviet-osulkedi. When they are dispatched by the god of Civilization to Qenain, the House of Flowers, they find it in disorder, having fallen prey to a mysterious influence... an alien influence... a human one. Can one man heal Shame in time to save him and Qenain both? Or will they both fail?
The last thing Jekun wanted to do was turn neuter. She'd spent her life as a pampered breeder in the caverns of House Sadlan, a female prized for her intelligence and stamina. Changing this late in her life meant... loss. Heartbreak. Work! Can she - it - find a place among the neuters of her House? Or, is there no peace to be found in a new body? A short story of the Jokka.
When Tanel's lover takes him to see the teller of naughty stories, he does not expect it to be a neuter, nor for it to challenge him to examine his own preconceptions, his fears...his ability to love. This story won a Strange Horizons Reader's Choice Award and was included in the Best of Strange Horizons, Volume 2. It was also a finalist for the 2003 Spectrum Awards in the short fiction category. It is included in the print book collection Clays Beneath the Skies.
"Needs some work"