Category Archives: Miscellaneous

Smashwords Summer/Winter Sale

Looking for an escape from the increasingly moronic world that we, inevitably, face each day?  How about a break from force-fed alternative facts, twitter feuds, and what has become our new sound-bite reality, where celebrity has been exalted at the expense of substance?

Well, look no further.

Unburden yourself of the collective weight of the idiocy in this world by immersing yourself in another – a world where stupidity is often rewarded with a swift death.  Journey into a world of avatars, sociopathic demigods, tyrannical villains, and reluctant – but powerful – heroes.

Reflections of Shadow Book 1: NEMESIS SPAWNED and Book 2: WORLDS SUNDERED are both available for 50% off on Smashwords.com from July 1 to 31, 2017, during their annual site-wide promotion.

Simply open the links in the images below, and use the code SSW50 at checkout.

Nemesis Spawned - Cover Amended 3

Worlds Sundered - Cover

Happy Reading!

 

#Smashwords #SummerWinterSale2017

 

Check out other great self-published works available for 25% off, 50% off, 75% off, or even for free, during this promotion as well.  https://www.smashwords.com/books/category/1/newest/1

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Smashwords Summer/Winter Sale

This is your chance!

Reflections of Shadow: NEMESIS SPAWNED is available for FREE on Smashwords.com from July 1 to 31, 2016, during their annual site-wide promotion.

What great timing for a sale?  In the weeks leading up to the release of my second novel, Reflections of Shadow: WORLDS SUNDERED, I’m offering you the chance to read the first one absolutely FREE.

Simply open the link to Reflections of Shadow: NEMESIS SPAWNED at Smashwords.com, or just click here, and use the code SFREE at checkout.

Happy Reading!

#Smashwords #SummerWinterSale2016

Nemesis Spawned - Cover Amended 3

 

Check out other great self-published works available for 25% off, 50% off, 75% off, or even for free, during this promotion as well.  https://www.smashwords.com/books/category/1/newest/1

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The Law of Convergence

There is a subtle, yet pivotal, concept that we can find in every single work of fiction in existence, be it literary, cinematic, or otherwise.

This concept is observed in the lovers’ paths crossing when they do; it’s observed in the hero’s timely intervention in the villain’s dastardly machinations; and it’s observed in the event that finally brings the dysfunctional family back together, so that they may finally work out their differences.

I call this concept convergence, and I feel that it’s one of the most important elements in any tale, just as it is one of the most important elements in our own lives.

Many people are oblivious to the wonder that is the convergence.  They are ignorant of how often it occurs around them and, when they do notice it, they label it as ‘chance’ or ‘fate,’ and never give it a second thought.

I, truly, feel sorry for these people.

From every major development in our lives, to the most commonplace, convergences rule our existence.

Imagine that you’re walking down the street at a fairly brisk pace.  Another pedestrian, going the same direction, walks ahead of you, taking their sweet time.  Yet another pedestrian (or, perhaps, a cyclist) comes towards you in the other direction.  Without fail, the only opportunity that you will get to pass the sloth ahead will always present itself at the narrowest part of the sidewalk, at exactly the same moment that the person coming towards you is parallel.

Brooklin Bridge

Of course, the frustrating example above may be rooted more in my own neuroticism than many of your own examples, but it’s just one of a myriad.  The point is that these types of convergences happen all around us every day.  They may be buried in minutiae, or part of a violent upheaval in our lives, but they’re there.

Everything, inevitably, converges.

Even if we accept the fact of the matter, however, the questions about ‘how’ and ‘why’ abound (and are far more convoluted).  Religion describes such phenomena the guiding hand of God, whereas science describes them in molecular terms – as the macroscopic results of sub-atomic particle behaviour.  Perhaps convergences are part of some cosmic pattern?  Perhaps we are merely missiles programmed to fly through our lives at a speed and trajectory manipulated by someone or something else?  No one can really say for certain, but perhaps acknowledging the existence of the concept, and the inevitability of the law of convergence, is enough.

If you read my novels, REFLECTIONS OF SHADOW, you’ll notice several convergences (both explicit and implicit) in the events that take place.  The concept is just one of the many fascinating and inexplicable phenomena that I love to ponder and, like so many before me, I hope that I can use art to draw attention to many ideas that might be otherwise overlooked or unappreciated in our reality.

Nemesis Spawned - Cover Amended 2

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The Celestial Sentry – A New Poem

In glory, I want to thrive;
But beneath tempered victory my passion hides.

Oh, tear the veil;
Edit the world’s end;
Until everyone feels the spirit of iniquity.

Strife lives inside my skin;
Somewhere beyond the oracle’s sight.

I want to scratch until I free it;
Be released from the ill-fitting suit.

The punishment was to be a sentry;
Forever standing guard.

The swirling darkness sways;
Threatening, tempting, wheedling.

I fear the possibility;
I always have.

If the angels falter in their vigil…

If I’m all alone…

How long will we last?

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Dreadful – Dark Poetry

Amorphous shadows swirl around me,

drawn to the void in my soul.

They burn and they freeze,

they rip and they rend.

The shreds of my sanity

can no longer fight

the lure of their wicked embrace.

They howl my name,

and her whispering words,

push away the weight that I’ve borne.

The darkness has claimed me,

I’m swaddled in thorns.

So I let the blood weep from my cankerous wounds,

like the tears that I shed for what I have lost…

Once again.

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A STYGIAN BROOD – Horror Short Story

I just posted an old horror short story to my website.

Check it out! (just click the image below for the pdf)

A Stygian Brood Image

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Main Character of Nemesis Spawned – Alexander Cadeyrn — https://jameswlackie.com/works/

Alexander Cadeyrn

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April 10, 2014 · 9:03 pm

Meet the Avatars…

It’s been a little while since my last post, but I can honestly say that it’s with good reason…  After contemplating how to go about bringing life to some of the characters in my books, I decided to dust off my artistic skills (I use the term ‘skills’ loosely, of course) and put them to use in creating a few images of the avatars that you’ll meet in Reflections of Shadow: Nemesis Spawned.

And, after a LOT of work, I’ve come up with the following character visuals:

The first (of course) is SaelenThe Reaver, as he is known, is haughty, condescending, and deadly.  He cares nothing for his creations beyond how they can help him achieve his goals…

Saelen - The Reaver

The second is the beautiful Lycoris.  As vindictive as she is lovely, The Lady hides much more than she reveals.  Her dazzling smile has been the downfall of many – mortal and immortal…

Lycoris - The Lady

And, finally (for now), is Ea’nlilThe Teacher is thoughtful and slow to anger.  Over millennia, he has learned that there is more than one way to fulfill one’s destiny…

Ea'nlil

I hope you enjoy these first few images.

Be sure to check out the first book in the Reflections of Shadow series, Nemesis Spawned, to learn more about the characters!

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The ‘Doctor Who’ Existence

As we live our lives, all people face the inevitable physical changes that accompany growing older.  First, our childhood body is left behind in puberty, then our activities shape our adolescent body.  In adulthood, our lifestyles will change our physical appearance, and having children will change it further (women much more than men, of course).  Finally, old age will begin the process of eventual physical deterioration…

When we die, we are not the same physical entity that we were when we were born.  Our cells have changed so much over the course of our life that we seem to be a completely different person.  We take for granted that, throughout those changes, our mental self remains unchanged – in fact, we’ve built much of our culture around it, including the criminal justice system and the link between the educational system and the workforce.  But, in reality, can any of us truly say that we’re the same person our whole life?

If you’ve ever seen an episode of Doctor Who, you know that the character of The Doctor has been regenerated – reincarnated – twelve times (including the newest change).  He remains the same man, but inhabits a new form after each regeneration, in which he can gallivant around the universe anew.  It was watching this show the other day, that I had a minor epiphany…  You see, we are all The Doctor and, like him, we also regenerate over the course of our existence.

All my life, I’ve been blessed with a phenomenal short-term memory, but an abysmal long-term memory.  As I age, my memories of youth have tended to fade.  For me, it’s like trying to view my life, as it was, through clouded glass.  I’m grateful for the stories that my family tells, and the photographs that they keep, which help me retain the parts of my life that I never want to forget.  Having such a terrible memory, however, has afforded me the ability to compartmentalize my life and look upon it as if seen through the eyes of a relative stranger.  I remember being the boy who joined the drama club to be around a certain (unnamed) girl, but I know that I’m not really the same person.

In a way, I feel that making this distinction has made me a healthier person.  If we allow for a separation of the people that we’ve been, and the person we’ve become – if we allow those experiences to shape us, but not confine us – we allow for a far greater range of possibilities.  Every time we “regenerate,” we give ourselves the opportunity to build new experiences and leave old wounds behind.  Thus, if you’ve live a tortured existence, and all your thought is bent upon ending it, imagine how much healthier it would be if you could just leave that part of you behind, and end your suffering, without taking your own life…

Perhaps, if we recognize that we do not live only one life, but several, we might all be healthier people.  We can, like The Doctor, adapt and become new versions of ourselves, finding new perspectives on old problems and finding new companions to share in our adventures.  The possibilities are endless.

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Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag – A Geek’s Nod

So, I’m a geek, plain and simple.

However you want to shape it, I am – and always have been – into science fiction, fantasy, video games, comic books, history, mythology, etc.

Believe it or not, I’ve actually read the Silmarillion by J.R.R. Tolkien, and I have copies of BOTH the Star Trek and the Starfleet Technical Manuals on my bookshelves.  I still remember getting excited in anticipation of the next episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation, and the X-Files.  I’ve also seen Ghostbusters about a thousand times…  To this day, I make no apologies for loving these things, for that identity has shaped the man I’ve become and, strangely enough, I’m proud of who, and what, I am (Sometimes).

When I was young, however, it wasn’t cool to be into such things.  Hot girls were NOT impressed by one’s knowledge of Spider-Man’s origins, or the cool new “Easter egg” that you discovered in your favourite game.  Geek culture had yet to leech into the mainstream, as it has so effectively in the last few years.  But I was never alone in my passion for all things geek.  I had my buddy Ash.

Ashraf Ismail, for those of you who don’t know him, is the Game Director for Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag at Ubisoft.  He’s worked in the video gaming industry for more than ten years, and he’s about to launch one of the coolest games that I’ve ever seen on October 29th, 2013 in North America.  Before he was any of these things, however, Ash was my best friend.  He and I shared a passion for science fiction, video games, and comic books.  We’ve been friends since the fifth grade, and I can think of no better human being on this planet (a statement I stand by, and refuse to qualify).

So, in honour of my best friend’s marvellous upcoming achievement, I’ve decided to share this incredible game with you.  It’s the fourth installment in the Assassin’s Creed series of games, and it centres around pirate culture in the Caribbean at the dawn of the 18th Century (Awesome, I know!).

For those of you who’ve yet to hear anything of the game, check out this trailer to whet your appetite…

The open world that they’ve created in the game is so expansive and beautiful, that any description I might offer would pale in comparison to the actual experience, so here’s a quick walkthrough, narrated by none other than Ash himself…

I hope that you will consider picking up this amazing game.  It will be available on PS3/PS4, PC, Wii U, and Xbox 360/Xbox One as early as October 29, 2013 in North America.

From one geek to another, I’m sure you won’t be disappointed!

NEW!!!!!!!!! Check out this great review of the game from IGN (written by Marty Sliva)…

IGN Review: AC4: Black Flag

Disclaimer: Please note that I’m not associated with Ubisoft, or this game, professionally in any way.  Any endorsement is based solely upon my own opinions.

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