Friday, January 30, 2009

Sometimes Ya Just Gotta Do It In Public

Last Friday the greatest internet radio talk show ever mentioned so many times I lost count. It really brought into focus all the attention and airtime that the guys have given. That's not even going into the honest reviews Geoff and the guys (J and Ross - Mickey isn't into the Sci-fi, understandable), have put to air.

These are some talented podcasters who manage to put out three hours at a time each week. A lot of people don't know how hard that is, just showing up on your own at the same time every week isn't easy, imagine three guys showing up at the same time every week, that's bloody hard. They're coming up on 300 episodes. Epic, simply epic.

They manage to do it and be funny enough to keep me listening and trust me, I'm a former Revision3 and TikiTV watcher. Though they're great casts, I only have time for one podcast, and for me that's SomaCow.

Now just imagine for a moment that your favorite podcast or TV show is actually actively trying to help you accomplish something by giving you airtime, putting your name where it will be noticed and flashing your website. That's really amazing to me.

Here's me taking a moment to thank J for sucking me in about 8 months ago and being a great third chair, Geoff for the studio, the reviews and everything else, Mickey for being the almost always intelligent and practical Mickey, and Ross for being so enthusiastic.

Check them out at: if you haven't already.


Somacow Reviews Spinward Fringe Triton

Geoff of Somacow finally cracked the cover of Spinward Fringe Triton. His hesitation isn't the result of procrastination, a feeling of boredom towards science fiction or even some kind of ocular affliction. He was simply afraid he wouldn't enjoy the book.

I understand. If he didn't enjoy it he'd be obligated to give it a bad review, and Geoff and I, well, we've become pleasantly acquainted and mutually wish each other all the success in the world.

The good news here is that I didn't phone Spinward Fringe Triton in, I actually put some real effort into it and for Geoff that seems to have paid off. Thank God, because when this man decides to voice his dislike for something he uses his wit and sizable vocabulary to great effect.

The review is well done, with a few jests slung here and there at Ross, a commentary from J following shorty after that made me grin and all together, if you don't already follow SomaCow, you should take a listen to this episode. There is some fecal humour preceeding the review, so wear a poncho.


[Coming this weekend: Real news about Spinward Fringe Frontline]

Tuesday, January 20, 2009 In Need Of Reviews

Recently began listing my work on their primary merchant site. Awfully nice of them, especially since they did it for free, but that's only the beginning of the battle.

Sadly, independent writers don't place well when their work is first released. There's no advertising budget, the books aren't backed by a big publisher that can make them a large priority and I don't have copies in bookstores across the globe.

That's why I'm asking for your help.

I've enjoyed a great deal of support and a sudden rise in popularity on Mobipocket thanks to you good people, so it's hard for me to ask for anything more but I'm in a tight spot. What I need is pretty simple.

The most direct way to help out is to post a review of your favorite book in the science fiction series, First Light Chronicles Omnibus, Spinward Fringe Resurrection, Awakening or Triton. People often read the reviews other readers have posted before investing in a single book and especially before they start a new series. Having some positive reviews attached to each major book is the most important thing at the moment so if you have the spare time this is the best way to help.

Another way to help is to post about the release of my work on Mobipocket or Amazon on your own blog or a bulletin board (preferably one that's within context).

You can also tell readers you know personally about the books being available in print. A lot of people are still resistant to Ebooks for many reasons. Make sure it's someone who enjoys science fiction, however. I've found that these books cross into the fantasy genre well, but they don't cross into the romantic or historical fiction genres too gracefully...

There you have it, if you can think of another way to lend a hand just post it in a comment below.

Thank you all for your help and support thus far. It's been a great ride and it'll only get better with the upcoming release of Spinward Fringe Frontline!


Sunday, January 18, 2009

Books by Randolph Lalonde: Now Available On

Finally, instead of going through other companies to get my books available internationally through Amazon I'm using their services from beginning to end. The results are amazing. I have proofs of all the science fiction books I've published (The First Light Chronicles and Spinward Fringe books), and every single one of them is perfect.

The proofs arrived a week early and the listings on are up. My storefront is linked just to the right of this post. I'm honestly happy with the way they're treating me from one end to the other and glad I went through the trouble of re-designing the covers and interiors. The prices are also quite reasonable considering the high quality of the books.

The only drawback is that the books are only available on, not or so there's no super saver shipping available for anyone outside of the US. The shipping fees for anyone outside of the United States are pretty reasonable though, much better than or any of the other companies I've investigated.

Before I run off and resume work on Spinward Fringe Frontline, I'd like to take a moment to reassure the people who read my work as Ebooks. Unlike big publishers, I will NOT wait until the printed version of my books are on the market before releasing the Ebook versions. I'll gladly release any work I publish as an Ebook first. There's just no point in delaying a release, especially if I know people are anxious to get their hands on what I'm doing.

Thank you again for your support, without you I wouldn't be doing this. Now go spread the word to all those non-Ebook lookers that Amazon can send them a copy of an old fashioned, glossy covered, weighty book if they like. I know I'm glad I have hard copies now, they look pretty good on my shelf and are doomed to be dog-eared soon.


Thursday, January 15, 2009

Spinward Fringe Frontline: The Work Goes Well

It's past midnight here and I'm wide awake, wired.

Spinward Fringe Frontline has taken more time to write than anything I've worked on in the last few years. I've done more research, more rewriting, more editing so far on this one work than anything.


I want to write an adventure epic that beats everything I've ever written hands down.

When this is finished I want to open the proof copy, start reading then wonder to myself; Did I write this? Did some much more imaginative, talented author put a book out under my name?

I said a long time ago that something isn't worth writing unless you enjoy the work, unless the story and characters grip you and refuse to let you go until the tale is told, their words are on the page and the story is ready to be passed on.

So far I've enjoyed working on Frontline. It's shaping up the way I want it to, and the story is moving very quickly. The writing is getting easier as I go, the characters are telling me what the next line is, where they want to go and keeping up with them is becoming blissfully difficult.

Sadly, I have to get a few hours of sleep before continuing my work, but for all those who are wondering, I have 177 pages locked in as of tonight and there's a lot more coming a lot faster.

If you're really having trouble with the wait, there are a few things going on. is now accepting orders for the First Light Chronicles and Spinward Fringe books. Some are still in a pre-order state, but will ship in the next few days to anyone who orders early.

Geoff of will be rendering his review of Spinward Fringe Triton live on Friday night. The live show can be seen and heard between 7pm-10pm here. Their show does often contain mature content, so you're informed. I have to take this opportunity to thank J, one of the hosts of SomaCow, for introducing me to the show. I enjoy being a regular listener just as much if not more than I enjoy being their "resident author."

Tomorrow I'll be back at the keys for a whole 8+ hours and I can't wait. Spinward Fringe Frontline is a book with some serious grip.


Friday, January 9, 2009

Coming to Soon: Randolph Lalonde In Print

By January 17, 2009 many of my books will finally be available in print through They'll be be pressing copies the day they're ordered and you can benefit from Super Saver Shipping as well as other specials.

It'll be nice to be working with a retailer (or Etailer in this case), that people trust and doesn't charge anyone outside of the US massive shipping fees. Here's a list of the books that will become available on or before January 17:

First Light Chronicles Freeground
First Light Chronicles Limbo
First Light Chronicles Starfree Port
First Light Chronicles Omnibus (All three of the above collected)

Spinward Fringe Resurrection
Spinward Fringe Awakening
Spinward Fringe Resurrection and Awakening (both books collected in one volume due to their individually smal size).
Spinward Fringe Triton

All of the above titles are already available through my new Amazon storefront on the Kindle (that's Amazon's proprietary reader), and through Mobipocket or for those of you who prefer to read your ebooks in PDF format. There are also signed copies from a very limited initial test print run I had done early in 2008 just in case you're looking to snag a collector's item or memento. (Links to all of those places are just to the right of this post).

Since I'm still an independent writer and Mobipocket users have been so loyal, I won't be waiting until printed copies of future books are available before listing titles electronically like most publishers do. So Mobipocket users will have access to my work weeks before anyone who still reads conventional print has a chance to order a copy. I'm happy to make Mobipocket a priority even though things have slowed down quite a bit. Without the users there I wouldn't be putting my work up on and I wouldn't have a remote shot at making a living at this.

Thank you all for your support so far, there will be an announcement when the books are officially available so you don't have to keep checking my webstore every day (don't wear out your Ctrl+R keys Paul, you'll hear the news here moments after I do!)


Thursday, January 8, 2009

Spinward Fringe Triton and Frontline: The Soundtrack

Get a playlist!
Standalone player
Get Ringtones

It's no mystery that I write to music. What a lot of people don't know is that I tend to assign characters and certain scenes (or chapters), themes. The music provides a touch stone for me to go back to, an easier way to get in the mood to write for a certain character or in a certain imaginary environment.

As of yet there haven't been any (serious) offers to put Spinward Fringe on the telly or silver screen, but if they ever did I'd hope that they'd take a look at this list of songs that I've attached to characters and scenes. I thought you'd enjoy a musical tour of these two books. While vastly different, I'm fiercely proud of both of them, especially Frontline right now since it's turning out so well.

Below is a list of the tunes and a very brief description of where they fit (roughly). Since I'm avoiding spoilers here some of the descriptions are pretty vague and they're in no particular order. Enjoy!

Pandemonium - Apocalyptica: Opening Theme
Ion - Apocalyptica: Triton Space Combat
Burn - Apocalyptica: Gunfight on the ship!
Toreador II - Apocalyptica: Starfighter combat sequence
Stroke - Apocalyptica: Jake's in trouble! (Again)
Faraway - Apocalyptica: Ayan and Jonas' theme
Whistling in the Dark - Triton Epilogue
Seven Lives - Enigma: Hyperspace trouble!
Fata Morgana - Enigma: The ship gets ready / training.
The Alchemist - Enigma: The ship gets ready / training.
Darkest Before Dawn - Enigma: Decisions are made / Captain's Office.
Goodbye Milky Way - Enigma: Funeral / Bound for the nebula.
Following the Sun - Enigma: Agameg Price adds to the Big Surprise.
Damascus - Conjure One: Planet Pandem
Center of the Sun - Conjure One: Peering into Eternity (Chapter name)
Premonition - Conjuer One: The wreckage of war (Chapter name)
Redemption - Conjure One: A trip planetside.
The Messenger - The Tea Party: Lead singer of Stonemark strums an acoustic in the park.
Stargazer, Requiem, Paint it Black - The Tea Party: Stonemark's on stage set.
Welcome to the Machine - Queensryche (cover): The View From The Top to Lucius Agrippa Wheeler (Chapter names)
Hang 'em High - My Chemical Romance: Oz picks a gunfight!
Venom - My Chemical Romance: Frost runs for his life!
1st Person - Stone Sour: Ship combat (Frontline).
Rough Boy - ZZ Top: The Night Watch (Chapter) and Samson Crew love song.
La Grange - ZZ Top: Frost's drunk (again).
Spring III - Vivaldi: Ayan's sleeping.
Nightbreed Title Tracks - Danny Elfman for the Clive Barker Film: Nightbreed: Meunez meets Collins and all chapters focusing on those characters from that point on.
So Ha - Splashdown: Stephanie can't stop laughing.
Sugar High - Splashdown: Ashley's Theme
Halfworld - Splashdown: Alice and the Clever Dream
Lighthouse - Hope: A new life aboard.
Faraway (Radio Edit) - Apocalyptica: Spinward Fringe Triton End Credits
Following the Sun - Enigma: Spinward Fringe Frontline End Credits.

A special thanks to Elizabeth Mock who pointed out the site that made the playlist at the top of this post possible. I'd also like to thank all the musicians who wrote and performed this music, please don't sue me!

Oh, and work on Spinward Fringe Frontline is going magnificently well. You'll see more news from me on that and other developments very soon!


Sunday, January 4, 2009

Spinward Fringe Frontline: The Space Opera Series Goes Epic

Space Opera.

There was a time when just hearing the phrase would conjure up films like Star Wars, Star Trek (I'm thinking of The Wrath of Kahn and The Search For Spock as well as whole sections of the Generations television series), Battlestar Galactica, or a small number of other films that writers, directors, actors and everyone else in between managed to infuse with compelling stories and dramatic performances.

When I started writing the Spinward Fringe series I realized that I was setting the stage for something different, something I had never written or seen anywhere before. That's the kind of thing I live for.

Resurrection and Awakening happened, they told a lot of the story very quickly and through a few twists and turns everyone who read those books knew what they had to in order to experience Triton.

Then I started Triton. It was a much greater undertaking than I had ever attempted before and that includes Fate Cycle: Sins of the Past, a 360 page epic fantasy novel I took the better part of two years to write some time before. Spinward Fringe Triton was larger than Resurrection and Awakening combined, had a few very clear plotlines, developed the universe in a greater sense and more than anything: it contained more than one love story. One begins and comes to a tentative conclusion while the others go on their merry little ways complicating the lives of many characters. Again, Triton forced me to write in ways that I hadn't before, to face challenges I hadn't overcome.

After many emails and messages through other delivery systems I've found that my risk taking paid off. It's a good thing too, because I was proud of Triton even before I gave it to my editor, before I was sure all of its parts made a worthwhile hole.

Now I'm right in the middle of Spinward Fringe Frontline. I can't go into details, and I can't even begin to describe Fronline without explaining what comes to mind when someone mentions the term Space Opera

When I see those words (Space Opera), I think; this is a story where one or more characters are searching for something, wherein a quest for love, success, honor or even the greater good is undertaken. To me a true Space Opera always includes a story that you could express in song, perhaps a romantic tune, a dark dirge, or heart breaking melody that tells us of the sacrifice our heroes are making for the greater good. Space Operas, to me, often tell us about something a character wants or needs but the quest for it isn't easy. Sometimes they have to sacrifice thier precious few opportunities to satisfy their emotional needs for the greater good or timing and circumstance doesn't allow them to fulfill their dreams. All the while every character has a song to sing. From the heart one will croon woefully, looking to the stars in hopes that their heart's desire is singing the opposite part of thier unfulfilled duet.

Meanwhile there are dark goings on, the same melody is played by villains, only it's twisted and sinister as they scheme and consort in the shadows. Thier desires, though counter to the greater good, may still be worthy of song especially since the real villains don't see their quests as wrong but take great pleasure in using nefarious methods to accomplish them.

Therin lies the true foundation of the Space Opera. Like many Operas before there is a greater good to serve, a reason for our heroes to stop singing their duet parts and join in on the thematic chorus that will temporarily replace the longing in their hearts with bravery and give them the strength they need to make choices that serve the greater good.

We in the audience know that when devilish villains take the stage a sacrifice may be required before the heroes can finally defeat them.

The Opera plays on and as the heroic chorus is countered by the villainous theme sung in Diabolus in Musica tones we sit white knuckled, chewing fingernails and gripping our partner's arm waiting to find out which character will think up the perfect trick, out sing our villain or make the ultimate sacrifice for the greater good. All the while we're hoping to hear that romantic theme triumphant, signifying that the golden pair have found their way to each other, praying to hear the heroic chorus sung thundrously high over the defeated villain and desperately trying to avoid thinking back to that dark middle act wherin nothing was won, hope seemed impossible and the villain had his day. We wonder before the end if the villain or hero will have the swan song as they are killed or sacrificed and find it hard to watch as those final moments play out.

That, to me is Space Opera. To elaborate a little more, I think that's a quick and dirty guide to Epic Space Opera.

More specifically, that's what I'm doing in Spinward Fringe Frontline.

The stage is set, the players are all in costume, the audience has returned from the first intermission and now I go to write that dark, sinister second act.