About WMG Publishing

Founded in 2010, WMG Publishing, Inc. is located in Lincoln City, OR. The company publishes more than 450 fiction and nonfiction titles in trade paperback, ebook and audiobook formats. In 2013, the company launched Fiction River: An Original Anthology Magazine, which publishes six volumes a year containing short fiction from New York Times bestsellers to debut authors. For more information about the company, go to www.wmgpublishing.com or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

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Recommended Reading for Black History Month

Schools and libraries are always looking for great books to offer for Black History Month. We figured you might, too, so I thought it was time for some recommended reading.

We publish a number of books and stories here at WMG featuring African-American protagonists, but our most relevant series to Black History Month is Kris Nelscott’s award-winning and hard-hitting Smokey Dalton historical mystery series.

The books, which are set in Memphis and Chicago in the late ’60s, provide a no-hold-barred look at that turbulent era—from an African-American perspective.

Here are some of the numerous quotes praising the series:

“Nelscott’s series setting, in the turbulent late ’60s, gives her books layers of issues of racism, class, and war, all of which still seem to remain sadly timely today.”
—Oregonian

“Nelscott is good at conveying the edgy caution that blacks once brought to their movements among white society.”
—Houston Chronicle

“A blistering rendition of the ’60s racial wars marks this series as a standout as early as its second entry.  You don’t need to be a fan of private-eye novels to admire Smokey: You just need a conscience.”
Kirkus Reviews starred review on Smoke-Filled Rooms

“Nelscott does a superb job of using a familiar historical moment to dramatize an intimate human drama, as Smokey and Jimmy struggle to avoid becoming anonymous casualties lost behind the headlines.  This series has all the passion and precision of Walter Mosley’s early Easy Rawlins novels, but it is not derivative.  In fact, Smokey just may be a more compelling character than the celebrated Easy.”
—Booklist starred review of Smoke-Filled Rooms

“So much real drama shook the country during the spring and summer 1968 (from [Martin Luther] King and Bobby Kennedy’s killings to the street horror of the Democratic National Convention) that it might seem foolhardy to try to add fiction to the mix.  But Nelscott has the heart, courage and brains for the job: Her scenes of demonstrators confronting police in front of the Hilton Hotel on Michigan Avenue (where Smokey gets a job as a security guard) could have come from a documentary, and her fictional characters (including a perfectly drawn family of friends with whom Jimmy and Smokey take shelter) all breathe and perspire with reality.”
—Chicago Tribune of Smoke-Filled Rooms

“[Kris Nelscott’s Smoke-Filled Rooms] is really about American racism and about the riotous 1968 Democratic convention in Chicago….Nelscott brings it all back, and it’s hair-raising.”
—Washington Post Book World on Smoke-Filled Rooms

“War, which deals with the disappearance of a militant black Yale student during the long, hot summer of 1969, is a gripping read that drags us deeper into Dalton’s uneasy world.”
—Entertainment Weekly on War at Home

 

And that’s just a small sampling.

The series is available in ebook, trade paperback and audiobook, and there’s an electronic boxed set of the first three novels if you want to get a jump-start on the series at a value price.

To learn more or to buy the books, click here. I can’t emphasize enough how spectacular this series is; it’s a must-read any time of the year.

Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer.

Going to the Chapel

Going to the Chapel

As I write this, I’m preparing to leave for my destination wedding. By the time you read this, the wedding will have already happened and I’ll be back in Oregon.

Those of you who know me personally know this is not my first marriage. It’s not even my second. Third time’s the charm for me, apparently.

As for the groom, well, it’s his fourth. He thought he wouldn’t get married again after the third “strike” (as he called it).

So, why get married again? All I can say is the all that romantic lovey-dovey stuff you hear…well, it’s true. When you (finally) find the person you were meant to be with, everything looks and feels different. Colors are brighter. Love songs and poetry make sense. The world feels full of endless potential.

Or maybe we’ve just finally gotten good at this after all the practice <grin>.

I’ve never looked forward to a wedding before (yes, I know, should have been a sign…), but I’m very much looking forward to this one. I guess because this is the only one that’s truly mattered to me.

We’ve asked our guests not to give us gifts, but I’d like to share a gift with you. Like many things that seem different now, I have a much deeper understanding of Kristine Kathryn Rusch’s wonderful story “Something Blue” than I did when I first published it years ago.

Now, I have a very important engagement to attend to. So, please click here to enjoy your free copy of “Something Blue.”

Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer.

A Double Dose of Great Fiction

A Double Dose of Great Fiction

Do you remember those Wrigley’s gum commercials from the ’80s for Doublemint Gum? (If you don’t click here, although fair warning: That song is an earworm.) The commercials promise the gum is a “double pleasure” and that it will give you a “double great feeling.” I can’t speak to whether the product stands up to its marketing (I was more of a Juicy Fruit girl), but the concept holds water. Double the potential, double the fun.

And so, it is with great pleasure that I announce the release of not one but two fantastic short fiction products.

First up is, well, a first: Issue One of the recently relaunched Pulphouse Fiction Magazine, edited by Dean Wesley Smith. Whereas Issue Zero featured exclusively classic reprints, Issue #1 launches the magazine’s standard format, which will mix old favorites with new original stories. (Look: another duality.)

Here’s the synopsis:

Pulphouse Fiction Magazine: Back after over twenty years. A three-time Hugo Award-nominated magazine, Pulphouse returns with eighteen fantastic stories by some of the best writers working in modern short fiction.

No genre limitations, no topic limitations, just great stories. Attitude, feel, and high-quality fiction equals Pulphouse.

Table of Contents
“In the Empire of Underpants” by Robert T. Jeschonek
“Queen of the Mouse Riders” by Annie Reed
“Group” by Ray Vukcevich
“The Heart Has Reasons” by O’Neil De Noux
“Molten Souls” by Jerry Oltion
“The Sea Girl’s Survival” by Valerie Brook
“Looking for the Bastard” by David H. Hendrickson
“The Reign to Come” by Kevin J. Anderson
“A Spud Full of Stars” by Kent Patterson
“Body Memory” by M. L. Buchman
“Catastrophe Baker Makes First Contact” by Mike Resnick
“Playing with Trains” by J. Steven York
“A Few Minutes in The Plantation Bar and Grill Outside Woodville, Mississippi” by Steve Perry
“At Witt’s End: A Spade/Paladin Conundrum” by Kristine Kathryn Rusch
“Minions at Work 2.0: Roll Call” by J. Steven York

Issue #1 released on Jan. 25, and is available here.

Releasing this week, on Jan. 31, is the next volume in the award-nominated Fiction River line is Justice, edited by Kristine Kathryn Rusch.

Here’s the synopsis:

Justice comes in many forms. And the wide variety of stories presented in this latest volume of Fiction River make that case. Of the fifteen powerful stories in this volume, some will twist your heart, others will pound you in the gut, and still others will make you feel like the world has meaning. From a man avenging a wrongful conviction, to heroic women fighting to reclaim their homeland, to kids trying to find justice in the chaotic world of adults, this volume will prove one you won’t soon forget.

Table of Contents
“The Ball Breaker’s Summer Club” by Valerie Brook
“Grace” by Michael Kowal
“Pariah” by Louisa Swann
“Spoils” by Eric Kent Edstrom
“The Night Takes You” by Leslie Claire Walker
“My Honor to Kill You” by Dan C. Duval
“A Pearl into Darkness” by Lisa Silverthorne
“Mercy Find Me” by Diana Deverell
“Best Served…Salted” by Lauryn Christopher
“Domus Justice” by Michèle Laframboise
“Uncle Philbert” by Dory Crowe
“Bone” by T. Thorne Coyle
“A Vulture Waits” by Rob Vagle
“The Supporters in Panama City” by Brigid Collins
“The Darks of Their Eyes” by Robert T. Jeschonek

You will be able to buy Justice here, starting Wednesday. And don’t forget you can subscribe to these magazines and never miss an issue. For Pulphouse, click here. For Fiction River, click here.

So, there you have it. Double your pleasure in the form of amazing short fiction. You even get double the stories from some of our favorite authors, who appear in both of these books.

Now, stop watching that commercial over and over on YouTube, and get reading.

Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer.

One Strange Coincidence

One Strange Coincidence

Last week, my phone started to ping about 7:30 p.m. on Thursday with concerned messages from John’s family. We had been under a high surf that day and some of the beachfront properties, including a well-known restaurant right on the D River Wayside and a couple of hotels, had some significant damage. The restaurant was evacuated because of a broken gas line. It was enough damage to make at least the regional news cycle, hence the calls.

I hadn’t thought that much about the storm, to be honest. We’re no stranger to big storms here on the Oregon Coast, and this one was more of an ocean event (think beach logs washed into buildings instead of trees falling on them). I’m above the tsunami line, so, while I worry about my beachfront neighbors, I don’t really worry about high surf.

But I know how worrying news stories about events happening near loved ones (but far from the worrier) can be. So, I preemptively texted my mom, dad, and sister (who live on the East Coast) to let them know I was safe and in no harm.

My text, however, had the opposite effect. Mind you, it was 10:30 or so East Coast time. My dad called first, then my mom, and finally my sister. Ah, the best laid plans.

The problem, you see, is that this ocean is scary. People die here…all the time. It’s beautiful, but it needs to be respected. I know that. Many tourists don’t. And it’s nothing like the oceans on the East Coast.

Once I’d calmed my family down, I opened my laptop to do some work and realized that Kristine Kathryn Rusch’s free fiction story for this week couldn’t have been more ironically timed.

The story, which is part of Kris’ Whale Rock series of short stories, is called “Strange Creatures.

Here’s the synopsis:

When the storm of the century hits Whale Rock, Sheriff Dan Retsler does everything he can to prevent hundreds of deaths. Everything except the thing that could have prevented the storm in the first place. He should have listened to the beautiful woman who came to his office before the storm hit.

He should have believed in her magic. But he didn’t. And now he must face himself—and the horrible results of a storm he could have prevented.

So, if you want to read a free fantasy story about a huge storm (while we clean up from our most recent one), click here. But don’t wait. Just as a storm tends to blow through relatively quickly, this story is free for one week only.

Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer.

The Game of Life (and Work)

The Game of Life (and Work)

After the turbulence of the past few years, I’ve decided that 2018 will be, if nothing else, the year of organization. That is a broad category that can apply to many things, but for the purposes of this blog, I’m going to focus on the concept of organization by means of providing structure to my schedule…particularly as it relates to time spent with my daughter.

This late fall/early winter has been a watershed period for my little family. The relationship between Nola and John has solidified into that of true father-daughter, and watching the positive impact on Nola has made all the hard choices I’ve had to make since she was born worth it. There’s a lot more behind that statement, but it would take a book to explain it all.

One of the many positive aspects of this new bonding, though, is that Nola wants more “family” time as opposed to “just Mommy” time. As such, we’ve instituted game night.

One of the first games we started playing was Clue. John and I both loved this game as kids and Nola thinks it’s great fun now. (It’s so cute how she will purposely show us any character card that represents the character we’re playing at the time to make sure everyone knows we’d never hurt anybody.)

They’ve changed Clue up a bit since the old days (Mrs. White is out and Dr. Orchid is in)—changing a bit with the times, I suppose. Read more about that here.

I can certainly relate with changing up a classic to more accurately reflect the times. Because we’ve just done that here at WMG to launch a new series of workshops—the Pop-Up Weekender Workshops—which are bringing back a very popular workshop of old—The Game—but with a new twist.

I experienced The Game (led by Dean Wesley Smith and Kristine Kathryn Rusch) in a workshop long before I took the helm of WMG. Back then, of course, it focused on how to make a living at traditional publishing. I remember how much fun it was. Like a game of Life mixed with real-world Dungeons & Dragons—but for authors.

Kris and Dean stopped offering The Game years ago, but I never stopped thinking about how awesome that concept was. So, when we were brainstorming new workshop concepts, I said to Dean and Kris: “I really wish there was a way we could bring back The Game.” Well, the timing must have been right, because Dean and Kris figured out a way to do it, but this time as The Indie Game, in which you role-play your way through ten years of decisions as an indie author.

That’s just one of the Weekender Workshops being offered (the first version of The Indie Game appears in April), with new topics popping up each month, starting in February.

For more information or to sign up, click here.

The cost of these workshops is $225 and space is very limited, so don’t roll the dice that they’ll have room if you wait.

As for me, I’ve got a murder suspect to figure out.

Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer.

This Reading Comes Highly Recommended

This Reading Comes Highly Recommended

Since long before reviewing a product was as simple as typing in a few words on our phones, word-of-mouth has been considered the absolute best way to sell something. Think about it: when someone you trust and respect suggests you try something, you seriously consider doing just that. Food, travel, cleaning products, shoes, books…you name it.

Look at the success of Instant Pot. I see posts all over Facebook from friends singing the versatile cooking device’s praises. I’ve even considered buying one even though I have a similar brand sitting in my cabinet as-yet unused (I bought it two years ago). Yet, every time I see the cult of Instant Pot posting, I think it’s something I might need. (Don’t worry, sanity prevails…but I do need to try that thing I already have…)

When it comes to books, word-of-mouth has great power, too. Oprah’s Book Club makes books an overnight success. Book reviewers helped guide readers’ and book store purchases. And one of the best tools in the business is the Recommended Reading List.

I love seeing WMG stories on such reading lists. And when the list is compiled by a science fiction and fantasy magazine with 24 years of history, it’s especially humbling.

Enter the Tangent Online 2017 Recommended Reading List, which features ten Fiction River stories, from six different volumes. The stories are ranked as follows, according to Tangent Online: “As is our custom, there are four sections to each length category. Those making the list in the short story, novelette, and novella lengths but having no stars, and those with either one, two, or three stars, according to how well the reviewer or reviewers valued a particular story.”

You can see the entire list here, but the Fiction River stories and their respective categories are:

Short Stories
“The Four Thirty-Five” by Annie Reed (Fiction River: Editor’s Choice)
“Dust to Dust” by Annie Reed (Fiction River: Pulse Pounders: Adrenaline)
“Legs” by Steven Mohan, Jr. (Fiction River: Feel the Fear)
“The Sound of Salvation” by Leslie Claire Walker (Fiction River: No Humans Allowed)
“We, the Ocean” by Alexandra Brandt (Fiction River: No Humans Allowed)
“The Legend of Anlahn” by Eric Kent Edstrom (Fiction River: No Humans Allowed)

Short Stories One Star
“Killing Spree” by Brigid Collins (Fiction River: Tavern Tales)
“The Glass Girl” by Leah Cutter (Fiction River: Editor’s Choice)

Short Stories Two Stars
“The Hot Eagle Roadhouse” by Chuck Heintzelman (Fiction River: Tavern Tales)
“Trees” by Diana Benedict (Fiction River: Editor’s Choice)
“Bad Dates Bite” by Kerrie L. Hughes (Fiction River: Editor’s Choice)

Short Stories Three Stars
“The First Ingredient” by Eric Kent Edstrom (Fiction River: Tavern Tales)
“A Ballad of Osmosis McGuire” by Travis Heermann (Fiction River: Superpowers)

So, if you missed any of these stories, or their respective volumes, be sure to check them out. And you don’t just need to take my recommendation on that <grin>.

Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer.

2017 Year in Review

Happy New Year! As we begin 2018, I thought we’d say goodbye to 2017 with a look back at the busy year we had here at WMG and highlight a few of my favorite projects.

We published almost 60 new titles in 2017. Some of these were part of one of our many popular fiction series, including the Seeders Universe (Starburst), Thunder Mountain series (Tombstone Canyon and Dry Creek Crossing), Cold Poker Gang Mysteries (Ace High and Burn Card), Mary Jo Assassin (Death Takes a Diamond), and the Diving series (The Runabout).

We also launched a brand-new series by Kris Nelscott called Protectors with the self-same title. That book also saw the production of our first hardcover books (with a regular hardcover and a signed and numbered limited edition, which is only available here). I am very proud of those hardcovers. They’re beautiful books, and I’m thrilled that we’ll now be able to do more of our books in hardcover in the future. (Oh, do I have plans…)

Many of our books were featured in bundles last year, as well, from the limited-time Storybundles to the longer-term bundles on BundleRabbit. WMG also expanded its own series of bundles and boxed sets, which will remain on the shelves. These include The Star Bundle: A Seeders Universe Trilogy, The Thunder Mountain Starter Bundle, The Cold Poker Gang Starter Bundle, The Smokey Dalton Starter Bundle, The Diving Series Box Set, the Fiction River Fantasy Boxed Set, and the Retrieval Artist Anniversary Day Saga Boxed Set: Books 1-8.

We had a busy year for our magazine series, as well. We released six new volumes of Fiction River (plus the aforementioned boxed set) and two volumes of Fiction River Presents (that series’ reprint line). And we added a new (old) magazine to our lineup: Pulphouse Fiction Magazine.

Launched via Kickstarter to roaring success, Pulphouse, edited by Dean Wesley Smith, brings back a popular magazine from the late-80s, early-90s, with the same editor and the same attitude. Issue Zero featured fan-favorite reprints culled from the way-back days. Issue One launches later this month and, like each issue going forward, will feature reprint and original stories. So, stay tuned for more from Pulphouse during its inaugural year.

We have a nonfiction series, as well, called WMG Writers’ Guides, which saw two new additions this year: The Magic Bakery and Writing a Novel in Five Days While Traveling.

And, of course, our writing and publishing workshops are as popular as ever. And in 2017, we moved the online courses to Teachable, which makes creating (and taking) our online courses easier than ever. For more information on those courses, click here.

So, new series, technological advances, more book formats than ever—2017 was a great year here at WMG.

And we’ve got lots of new and exciting things in store for 2018.

Just you wait and see.

Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer.

A Gift for the Holiday

A Gift for the Holiday

Merry Christmas! I’m home celebrating the holiday with my wonderful little family, but I wanted to be sure to give you a gift, too. Without you, dear readers, my job wouldn’t exist and my wonderful life would look very different, indeed.

So, thank you for being part of it. And please enjoy this free holiday tale from the magical Kristine Kathryn Rusch.

Click here for the link to “Nutball Season.” But be sure to do that soon, because the link expires on New Year’s Day.

And if you want another free story once you’re done with that one, head on over to Kris’ blog and read “The Taste of Miracles,” Kris’ Free Fiction for this week.

From all of us at WMG, we hope your day is filled with the love and magic befitting this holiday.

Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer.

A Flood of Holiday Cheer

A friend of mine sent me a link last week to an awesome Icelandic Christmas Eve tradition called Jolabokaflod, or the “Christmas Book Flood.”

It seems the best Christmas gift you can give in Iceland is a book. Gifts are exchanged on Christmas Eve and Icelanders spend the rest of the evening reading.

Iceland, as it happens, also publishes the most books per capita. And the majority of the book sales fall between September and November.

Hence, the Christmas Book Flood.

Now, maybe I’m biased, but this sounds like the best Christmas tradition I’ve ever heard of and one we should adopt here immediately. (You can read more about it here.)

So, in the spirit of Jolabokaflod, have I got the bundle for you.

The Christmas Cheer Bundle on Storybundle has ten books for one low price. But it’s even better than that, really, because one of those books is an anthology, one a three-story collection, and one is a 20-story bundle all its own.

Included in the bundle are five WMG products: Melody Ridge by Dean Wesley Smith, Dressed in Holiday Style by Kristine Grayson, Fiction River: Christmas Ghosts, and two holiday short stories in the Very Merry Christmas bundle: “Jukebox Gifts” by Dean Wesley Smith and “Nutball Season” by Kristine Kathryn Rusch.

Here’s a bit about the Christmas Cheer Bundle, curated by Dean Wesley Smith:

For me, great stories and Christmas Holidays go hand-in-hand. I used to buy myself books for Christmas, and Christmas vacation was always a time I got to do the most reading when I was growing up. Then when I started writing, a friend and I challenged each other to write six Christmas short stories in seven days and put them in a little chapbook for our friends as gifts. We did that every year for years, cementing in my mind that Christmas meant stories.

So when I got a chance to put a bundle of Christmas stories together, I jumped at the chance. I wanted to bring stories back to Christmas for me. And bring in the fantasy of the season.

To read more about the bundle or for purchasing options, click here. Buy it for yourself or give it to a friend (or both).

Who knows, maybe you’ll start your own book flood.

Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer.

A Science to Fiction Design

A Science to Fiction Design

I’m just wrapping up my third cover design branding workshop co-taught with Dean Wesley Smith, this time for science fiction covers (and working on a new promotion concept—but more on later in a bit). Sci-fi covers are simultaneously simple and complicated.

The simplicity comes in the art and typography choices (although I can hear the workshop participants yelling now that this stuff is anything but simple <grin>). As a designer, sci-fi calls for a distinct look, which makes it more formulaic (and thus simple for a designer) in the choices of art and fonts. Sci-fi art and typography looks futuristic for the most part. The art is fairly easy to search for, usually. And there are multiple great options for typography.

The complexity, for me, comes in making the covers look individualistic enough that the books stand out in the field even as they clearly represent their genre.

That was my biggest concern when I agreed to do a sci-fi cover workshop. Could I, the same designer, generate enough disparity in covers when doing them in bulk as I do for these workshops.

I was pleasantly surprised to discover that yes, I could. (And relieved.)

The following composite shows the cover templates I created for the authors in this workshop. Some of them are pretty raw because I was having to cobble together art quickly (the final versions would be much cleaner). But they’re a good representation of the possibilities in sf cover design.

There are a couple of YA books in here as well as a post-apocalyptic offering (bonus points if you can tell which ones those are).

Designing these covers is fun, but my time is limited, so we probably won’t be able to offer one of these again for a while.

However, if you want to get in on the newest offering from WMG, you’ll need to act fast. It’s a Promotion and Sales Package that includes a cover and a whole lot of promotional materials for a complete sales package for one of your books. You can read more about it here, but don’t delay because the offer ends Dec. 18.

Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer