Lon Varnadore's Author Blog

Sci-Fi and Fantasy with a noir edge

Category: Janus City (page 1 of 2)


Is in the can!  Sent the last part off to my editor and from there it should be a quick turn around before I get it out to you all who love this little series.  I do hope you like it.  And don’t worry, there is more coming.

Why did I push through all three parts?  Well, I feel extremely bad for my readers.  They have been waiting for the rest of the series for most of the year.  Also, this is the way to help me push forward with my new publishing schedule.  For the next few months, I shall be working on wrapping up individual series, all four of them, and work on a book at the same time.

I started with Starkiller because even though it was originally one of the serials I liked the least, I grew to love the crew and warped characters of the Starkiller.  And, I had three parts, so I thought I could finish up three easier than say the four I need for Purgatory, the three much longer pieces for Risen part two and three or however many for Janus City. September I am going to work on Purgatory.  Then, I am going to work on Risen in October and then finally Janus City in November.  I don’t know about Purgatory, but Risen and Janus City are also “gateway” serials.  To get the reader interested and push them into a series of novellas that will be slowly released through next year.

And I think Starkiller is going to be one that I like to write the most now.  But, who knows.  I do have a working title for the next Starkiller story, but that is a HUGE spoiler so, can’t release it yet.  I will leave you with the great book cover that is done by Domi at inspired cover design.  She is awesome!  And reason rates.



A decision has been made…And update on Starkiller Bundle

First off, I have decided to take a small break from working on Wrath.  Probably the weekend and a day.  Monday is my birthday so I might take that day off.  Or not because I want to keep working on something.

I will be working on Janus City and Starkiller for the next few days.

I also have dropped the price of the bundle of Starkiller Part 1-3.  It is currently on sale for $0.99.  It will last until August 7th.

Also, Void Emissary is free until the 7th as well.

And yes, I am currently in the works of writing a sequel to Void Emissary, which I hope to get out before the end of the year.

My current plans are as follows…

Until the 7th of August, work on getting Janus City Part II and Starkiller Part Four out asap.

From the 8th until 20th, work on and turn Wrath of the Empress out.

21st to the 31st, work on Tears of the Empress and the unknown title of Void Emissary II.

Then, in Sept, really pull back into my little writing hermitage and just write and write and write.  By the end of September, I hope to have Tears and Void Emissary II done as well as the skeleton of a series of urban fantasies.  And maybe the spine of an epic fantasy as well.

Why a series for urban fantasy?  Well, I have to say I have been flailing about with sci-fi.  I love it, and always will.  I am not saying urban fantasy or epic is going to do me any favors.  Yet, I want to try and get a few books int he series written instead of dribbling them out once a year or twice a year as I have done with my other books.  I have written, tossed them up and not really done anything to help move things forward.  If I have, say four urban fantasy books written, edited, covers and even some ads ready to go and I pull the trigger, every month dropping another book in the series, I will–hopefully–build up an audience and readers who will look at my catalog on Amazon and read my other stuff.  And hope to pull in more of my thousand true fans.

In November will tell you all now, I will be in Chicago for a day, then heading down to New Orleans.  I might have told you this all before.  But I am joining a few other indie authors and hoping that by the time this confab is over on the 10th of November, the group of indies will have a book or the first draft of a book, that we will send out and sell.  Keep you all updated on that as well.

And I wish to thank you all for continuing to read the blog.


Day 85/ Day 25

Well, I am five days away from the end of the 90 day three months to a trilogy challenge.  And it has been a spectacular mess for the most part.

Yes, I got the first of the trilogy done.  It is selling well, and right now until the 27th, it is completely free…

And it is number 13 in Space Opera! Woot!!  Granted, it is #13 in the free category, but I’ll take what I can get.  Exposure is exposure…

Now, I just need some reviews…

The unfortunate stuff is that I have the draft zero of Wrath of the Empress which is sitting on my desk waiting for me to start the rewrite.  And Tears is a handful of pages at the moment.

But, I am also trying to finish up the military sci-fi serial Starkiller and releasing something new later today…if Amazon clears it soon.  I will provide a link when it is up.  The Something new I can tell you about.

It is this…

It is the first of all of my serials and the first of my series for 4Pollack.  A “starter set” of sorts.

If you haven’t picked any of them up, give it a look see.  It would be great if you did.


Day 69/ Day 7

So, I know this is weird, doing a post during the day.  I just wanted to let people know that I have just published the first in a serial of a fantasy noir that if you read my blog, have read a version of.

Janus City Part One.  Suggest you pick it up if you like urban fantasy noir with an odd twist.  Also, got another print copy of Blood for the Empress and as you can see, the cover and the trim size don’t match.  (Sigh)  I will work this out…


Day 66/Day 3

I didn’t have a chance to update this blog yesterday, was exhausted and dealing with other things.  Didn’t get much writing done either.  But, today, I…well I got 1678.  Better than nothing.  But, I do need to step up the writing if I want to try and actually get close to my goal of 100k words this month.

But I have two GREAT pieces of news for you all.  I have completed two short pieces and they will be going out shortly.  One is the first of a new serial.  And, if you kept up on my blog last month, it will be familiar to you.  It is Janus City: Part One.   Yep, I am going to start up a serial of that.

The other piece of news is that I have finally finished my “book magnet” for the Empress Series.  It is called the Collector and I have shared the cover with you before.  But I will share it again because I love it.

And, just in the last hour or so, I had a thought to put together another bundle.  A sort of “starter set” for the serials I have out.  Now, if you already have all of them, no worries.  But, it is a thought and I might try it and see what happens.  Will keep you updated.  And yes, if I am going to push forward on the serial bundles, that means I have to get my writer butt in gear and start to finish some of these serials!

Here are the covers, enjoy…



Day 57/Day 24/Janus City Update

Feel like I am running on fumes for some reason.  Brain isn’t working very well.  Only did 900 words today.  And, no gaming tonight.  But, I will be gaming with some friends tomorrow, which I am looking forward to.  Anyway, I am going to wrap this one one.  Night all.


Oh, one thing I guess…even though I might be distracting myself.  I have printed out some of Janus City and I might start editing a bit tonight or when I have a shot.  Thinking about making a short serial of it.


Day 51/ Day 14/ Chapter 12

Hello all.

So, fifty-one days into this three month trilogy challenge.  I am doubtful I will make the complete thing, yet I will have most of Blood ready and working on Wrath throughout the month.  I am sure by August I will have a the other two ready to go.  Though, I do know I might step away from the trilogy to work on something else for a time to help me keep fresh.  It is my process and it is weird, but it is mine.

I have thirteen pages left of Blood and then I enter re-writing territory.  That I look forward to more than editing.  Editing is what I see as the vegetables of writing.  You HAVE to eat them, you HAVE to edit your manuscript.  It is a given.  Writing, that first draft, that is freedom.  That is dessert.  Re-writing is the meat and potatoes.  It’s the true meal of writing.  As the saying goes, “Writing is re-writing.”

Have I learned about the process more with these two concurrent challenges?  Yes I have.  One is that if I have a deadline, I will do everything in my power to avoid it until it is too late, see graphic below.  But, that is par for the course.  Two is that if I have a word count for the day, I will power through it as much as possible, but I sometimes have the attention span of a gnat and I can’t focus on one project.  Hence you all get to read the brain droppings that is Janus City.



Speaking of which…onward to Januc City…



Janus City Chapter 12

Typhon had heard the name somewhere. He looked at Grenden. Who is that?

Grendel chuckled. “I feel a little tremble on my chest. So you must be trying to talk to me. Haha. Not going to help. I will assume you are asking who it is. She is a woman who has stolen something from me. Something I very much wish to get back.”

Typhon narrowed his eyes. This is going to go nowhere. He hated what he was about to do. He worked saliva into his mouth, feeling the scars on the interior. He took breath and asked, “What did she steal?”

“Ahh, so you can speak Typhon. I had heard it was bit of a mystery if you could or not.”

“Not something I like to do.” He let out a low growl, his throat hurting from such a long time with disuse.

“I see. To your question, Typhon. She stole a piece of art work. Nothing to concern yourself with. I simply want her to be found and held for me to subject her to my own, hee, punishment.”


Grenden smirked. “I am willing to offer you ten thousand for the finding of this Roxanne List.”

Typhoon walked closer to the large fleshy man and stuck out his hand. Ten thousand was enough for some time. He might even afford a ticket to Westside for a few days, spend some time at Eden Falls. “Deal.”

Grenden wrapped his fat hand around Typhon’s slender one and the Grenden jolted forms he contact. “What was that?”

“You made a deal, a contract,” Typhon said, moving his neck back and forth, his voice stronger. He stood up straighter and felt a renewed energy flood his body. Grenden collapsed back into the chair, weak as a kitten. “What…what did you—“

He was gasping, unable to speak completely. Typhon smirked. His tongue felt along his mouth and he felt the scars fading. “You made a deal in Eastside, Mr. Grenden. You said you knew what I am. You don’t. I will find this woman of you. But, you aren’t going anywhere. You won’t be able to move until I return with your item.”


“I have taken your energy, a piece of your soul. You are going to help me with this case and I know exactly where you are while I am out and about.” He let out a sigh.  He stretched out his back, cracked his neck moving it back and forth a few times and then turned to walk away.

“You mean I am stuck?”

“Most assuredly,” Typhon said as he wlaked out the door.


Day 50/ Day 13/ Chapter 11

Well, there went that streak of having my chapter and my 100k challenge day being the same number.  Oh well.

Last two days I have been taking it easy.  Haven’t written much, in fact at all.  But I did go out and have fun, and also stayed home and loafed around and recharged the old writing juices.

Today’s current total is 1,825 words.  And it is only 9:45 where I am.  So, I will be getting there for the day.  I am over 19k words in the hole.  But, still going to push forward with the challenge anyway.  It is fun.

I shall be going back to it after I post this blog entry.  So, until next time, another episode of Janus City…



Typhon stopped. He closed his eyes a second and tried to focus on the thought. He felt the strong surge of hate for a long moment, searching for the source. The rain started to fall, steady hard rain that Typhoon hated since it distorted his power, his gift.

The surge of hate vanished.

Dammit. He was stuck. Part of him wanted to wait again of the angry thought, someone wanted to kill people. It wasn’t a new thought, Typhon knew. He himself wished he could kill the city at times. Ye,t there wasn’t the spike of sudden anger in this thought. This was a deep hate for the world at large. Something that wanted to act on that hatred.

It was also something that he could usually track. Yet, the rain helped to retard his ability. And it would only get worse. Defeated for the moment, he went inside. Opening the door, he was knocked to the side by a teen girl as she rushed past him. She was thick, blue and pink hair flaring around her as she rushed past Typhon. She gave him a dirty look and walked off into the rain.

Typhon shook his head and walked into his apartment complex. He checked his mail, gave a nod to his neighbour Mrs. Gertz. She had been dead for five years, wasn’t a rez job. She was a ghost that still believed it was alive. Which happened often in Eastside.
He kept going up the stairs three flights to his small room. The door had been broken open. He frowned and concentrated, nobody was inside. He opened his door and found his small place had been ransacked. It was dark, and when he righted the lamp and switched it on, he was shocked to find a man sitting his chair, a smile on his flesh round face.

“Hello Typhon, I can see you are surprised I was able to be here?”

Typhon glared at the man.

“Yes, I also know about your small issue with not being able to talk,” the man said. “My name is Grenden. And, before you stress yourself more, this is the reason you couldn’t hear me.” Grendel took a thick meaty hand and pulled out a small pendant from under his shirt. The gray suited man smirked when Typhon’s eyes fell upon it.

“Yes, it is a mind shield. Not an inexpensive item.” He let out a small laugh. “Now, please have a seat on that wretched thing you call a couch.”

Typhon smirked at the man. He liked the couch. It was a paisley thing that was overstuffed and extremely comfortable. He flopped down on it, then looked at Grenden.

“I need you to find someone for me. Her name is Roxanne List.”


Day 48/ Day 10/ Chapter 10

So, as of this writing, I have 3,500 words for the day.  I am rather happy about that.  I did my Janus City chapter, which I will talk about later.  I also worked on the third of the 4Pollack novels and worked on more of the trilogy I should be working on this whole time.  I will get back to that once I have finished up the blog post.

And, yes why I am working on the third when the second 4Pollack novel isn’t up anymore?  Well, it was up.  And, I do have Cryo in the queue for revision.  I might try and work it in if I can either; get done with the trilogy a bit more or if I stall on one of the other projects and I need something else to work on.  I suppose it would still count towards my goal of words, since it is a revision and not just “editing.”

Either way, it will get done way before I have a finished draft of book three.

So, as for Janus City.  I am trying something.  I am going off of John Gallic for the moment and bringing in a new character.  Name is Typhon.  We will be following him for a little bit before going back to John.  Or, we will see John in a different way.  Either way…Janus City…


Chapter 10

Typhon leered at the woman grinding around on the pole. He peels off another double sawbuck from the roll in his jacket and slide it towards her. The catgirl gave him a happy squeak and crawled towards him, her yellow cat eyes staring at him as she did. She leaned forward, arching her back as she did to show off her ass in the to small thong that blended well with her soft yellow furred body. She opened her mouth and took the bill in her mouth and jerked backwards to sit up, reveals her fur sheathed body. Her small pert breasts revealed as the yellow fur faded to a thin fuzz that disappeared a scant inch from her aureola.

Always my favorite, he said to her.

She gave him a confused look.

He shook his head and started to get up. She crawled forward again and gave him a mewling whimper. He peeled off two more bills, pressed them to glowing dance floor and slid them towards her. She gave him a large smile, her smile more human with only the incisors more cat-like.

Again, she gave him a squeak and happy meow.

He gave a look at the bounce, Xer. The thick shouldered brute grunted at Typhon as he left. Then settled a thick meaty hand on Typhon’s shoulder. “Don’t you usually leave after her set?”

Need to get back to the wife. Typhon looked at Xer’s strange twist of his face hearing Typhon’s voice in his head. Xer let him go and Typhon took the opportunity to leave the strip club.

Outside, the perpetual umber of Eastside of Janus City was lit with neon signs of the red light district, and a few actual red lanterns hanging outside of several apartments and homes. Typhon walked along the street, his mind unable to contain the thoughts that streamed into his. In the club it had been easy to wall off his thoughts from everyone else. Attention was elsewhere and focused on the girls. Out in the city of Janus, it was harder to push away the stray thoughts that he could garner from walking down the street. He wanted to get home, and soon.

There, he had his sanctuary. His place where he rested and slept and was able to sleep. The small apartment mounted with thick plates of silver and gold. Costing him a pretty penny, yet it was worth it for him to have a place to rest his head and not experience other’s thoughts, dreams and nightmares.

But then, Typhon also needed those thoughts at times. It was his stock and trade.

Other people’s secrets.

As his steps found the Wraith Hostel he was stopped. One sentence slammed into his head.

“I will kill them all.”


Day 47/ Day 9/ Janus City Chapter 9

Well, back from my gaming night.  Always helps me recharge.  This was a different one than the usual pirate game we have been playing.  The DM needed a break so we are doing a two-part game called “Dark Run.”  The DM is very new, and those of us who have played for awhile helped her as best we could.  Looking forward to the next session and see what transpires.

As for writing, well…622 words today.  All of it on Janus City.  Part of it was trying to finish up the last excerpt.  And this one is pretty short.  Not sure exactly what I am going to do.  There are more than a few stories in Janus City and I might go on to one of them instead and leave the story of John Gallic on hold.  Or not.  Depends on how I feel tomorrow when I get ready to write the next part of the serial.

I have to say that there is a weird melancholia that has settled over me as of late.  The feeling that somehow this is all pointless and I should stop and go back to what I was doing before trying for the full-time writer thing.  However, I know it is just my own fear of failure/success that is trying to cause me to stop what I am doing.  Not going to work.  I am going to press on.

Anyway, your next dose of Janus City…



Chapter 9

The glow of the glasses pulled my attention away from the wraith. When I turned back, the wraith was gone. “Good riddance,” I muttered to myself, crossed the street and headed towards the glowing building. My hand strayed to my gun, not wanting to pull it yet.

As I moved closer, I felt the first few splatters of rain. First it was a misting, then it turned to rain. Which annoyed me, yet didn’t stop me from continuing to creep up onto the building. It was an abandoned storefront with a large boards in front of the glass walls and a gate across door. When I got closer, I saw the gate had been forced open enough that the chains and broken and hung on the door gate. I pushed myself through and when my hand touched the door, the glow flared.

I’m on the right track. I yanked open the door.

Two bullets zinged by me, breaking the glass of the door. I dropped into a crouch, pulling out my gun and felt the thrum of the runes in my wrist. I fired off a shot towards where the shots came from. It glowed a dull red as did the runes around my wrist. Yet, the light wasn’t enough to cut through the gloom. There was a scuffle from he darkness and the sound of a door popping open. I took a quick shot for the door, missing the form by an inch.

The glasses had switched off the moment I was in the storefront. With he danger gone, they flickered on for a few seconds. They showed a set of footsteps heading out of the door. Well at least that is answered. I charged forward towards the door, the gun coming out first.

I swept right to left, dropping to one knee as I swept to the left around the door. Good thing, the guy waiting there fired at where my head should have been. I slammed the barrel of the gun into the guy’s stomach. He grunted and doubled over. Helped by his momentum, he was slammed spread eagle on the ground. I pressed the gun barrel to his forehead and blinked.

My gun was pressed into the forehead of Kenneth, my client.

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