Soren Summers's Blog

April 23, 2017

Paragon (Vertex Book 3)

PictureNo no, trust me, I'm just as surprised as you are. While it will only properly release on 7/17/17 (see what I did there), book 3 of the Vertex series is now available for pre-order. Paragon delivers more of the same that you've come to expect from the series.

Look forward to more of Jarod and Gabriel doing awful things to their enemies (and to each other), more ridiculous plots and tropes that make you shake your head and think "I can't believe I paid money for this," and most importantly, lots and lots and lots of dying.

Many have been sacrificed to the altar over the course of the trilogy, all victims of Vertex's atrocities. So many have died, but as the kids say these days: When will your faves? KIDDING. I'm so kidding you guys, no one important is going to die. Other factual statements: Nostradamus was right, guns don't kill people, and cigarettes are good for you.

Check out the book by clicking on the cover above or the links below, but again be forewarned, the blurb is a massive spoiler for anyone who hasn't read the first two books. Which you should totally do in preparation for release, by the way. The author is kind of a histrionic idiot but I hear his books are pretty good.

Until then, find me on Facebook or  Twitter , or shoot me an email . See you in a couple of months, babies!

Available July 17, 2017.
Pre-order your copy now: Amazon | Amazon.co.uk
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Published on April 23, 2017 14:29

March 25, 2017

Psst.

Hey, listen. There's something I want to tell you.

I just got back from a week-long trip to Vegas. I want to tell you that the glimmering lights of the strip inspired me to write something new, the way hurling a garbage bag into a dumpster birthed Monster, or struggling to boil a pot of water sparked the final confrontation in Smolder, or sorting groceries inspired Parasite.

I want to tell you that I stumbled half-naked and alone into the cruel Nevada desert. I want to tell you that I had a vision quest and received the plots of so many books directly into my brain as I fed on the milk of scorpions and listened to the murmurings of the stars. 

In truth I slept for 15 hours straight in my hotel room, then peeled myself off the sheets and dragged my corpse down to the food court for some Popeye’s and far too many frappuccinos. In truth the roughly seven-hour road trip chapped my ass and I can still barely function.

But as little love as I hold for the city I have to confess something. The initial draft of Parasite was written from a foldout couch in a Vegas hotel about a year ago. It was actually written before Monster, before I even knew what Vertex was. In a way, that miserable hotel room was my universe's womb.

More than that I have to confess that I published Parasite in low spirits. I was, and still am worried that maybe this writing thing isn’t working as well as I thought it would. Yet the response to Parasite has been very encouraging, at least critically and in terms of the new friends it’s brought to the cult of Vertex. I think – I think that I would very much like to continue doing this.

I have so many more stories to tell. So many more, whether they involve Jarod and Gabriel or other men whose lives have been corrupted by Vertex and Jonathan Hargrove's touch. I want to write them all, so much that it hurts that I can't get it all out fast enough, so much that it can be frustrating at times. 

But as difficult and infuriating as writing can be, I realize now that storytelling is addictive. I don't think I've ever wanted anything more. Well okay, there was a time that I would have killed to get Kit Harington's dick in my mouth, but that's much, much harder to accomplish than writing, weeping, and gnashing my teeth over a manuscript, so writing novels it'll have to be. I have more to say. So much more to say.

Thank you for supporting me through the first few books in this universe. Every little rating, every last review, every like and comment on Facebook, every tweet reminds me that someone out there does care to see my work. Someone out there wants to read the things that I throw together late at night, things that I consider so ridiculous and so over the top, until the reviews come and I learn that people were Entertained. 

That's all I ever wanted, to make others laugh, or cry, or grit their teeth in anger. I just want to give people an escape for however long it takes them to read one of my books. It’s the best I can do. This world, at times, is utter garbage, and if I can give someone a brief vacation away from it, then I’ve done my work. 

I'm not making a living off of this just yet, but you're helping me get there, step by step. So thank you. Thank you. Give me time and I promise you that more books will come. More horror, more violence, and more love, because what sense is there in writing dystopia if you leave out all the glimmers of hope? 

Bug me whenever you like , and know that in a few months I’ll have something new to show you. I’ll have something to tell, and we can start this dance over, and I’ll get to say the same words – my favorite words – now that I know I’m in love with writing all over again:

Hey, listen. There's something I want to tell you.​
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Published on March 25, 2017 18:22

March 16, 2017

Parasite (Vertex Book 2) Out Now

Picture And it took us a whole six months to get here! Phew. Let's see if we can get the third one out faster.

​I want to say that I'm all out of words but this layout looks hella weird without some nice chunks of text in it so we're gonna go stream of consciousness for a bit. Just kidding, but hey, the more I type, the prettier it looks. How have you been doing? Do any fun stuff lately? Okay, looks like we can keep going.

Parasite picks up more or less where Monster left off, and in many ways it tries to pay homage to the good old zombie tropes while still kind of, sort of doing its own thing, Goes without saying that you shouldn't even be looking at the blurb if you haven't read Monster, but if your tastes lean that way it shouldn't be a huge stretch to read the two out of order. Still, go ahead and give the first book a shot. I hear it's pretty good! Coughs.

Incidentally, in totally unrelated news, Monster will also be on sale for the rest of the week, starting 12mn PST, March 17, 2017. More coughs. Bye for now!

Buy now or read on KU: Amazon | Amazon.co.uk
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Published on March 16, 2017 19:43

December 22, 2016

New book out: Smolder

PictureThis was a bit of a surprise to me as well, but – I've got a new book out! Smolder is a holiday-themed romantic horror book set in the same universe as Monster.

​It's fluffier, too, perhaps sweeter than a horror writer has any right to be, but hey, it's a pseudo-Christmas story after all. Don't worry, people still die, and stuff still blows up. A lot.

Monster's sequel comes out early in 2017, but for now I hope everyone has a good time with the new boys introduced in Smolder. Happy holidays! Links to buy the book below, followed by a video of the greatest Christmas pageant performance of all time.

Buy now:  Amazon  |  Amazon.co.uk 
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Published on December 22, 2016 20:52

November 30, 2016

Monster now available in print

PictureThis proof copy of Monster arrived in the mail the other day. I wasn’t expecting to have a reaction to holding it in my hands, but as I slid my fingers across the pages I could feel moisture leaking from my eye-holes. I thought it was urine, but after some cursory research (thanks, WebMD) I quickly came to understand that these were tears, which humans excrete when they are greatly moved. I had only ever urinated through my eye-holes once before, and that was when the hybrid was sucked out into space in that scene from Alien: Resurrection. I mean, he just wanted to be loved.

So yes, Monster is now available in paperback! Also I’m considering doing a giveaway on Goodreads, since this is now a thing I can do. Also also, I’m almost finished with a short, somewhat Christmasy Vertex novella, just in time for the holidays. Stay tuned.
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Published on November 30, 2016 00:00

October 28, 2016

On Top Down Under Guest Post and Giveaway

The fine folks over at On Top Down Under Book Reviews have given me a soapbox from which to spout my incessant ramblings, which is to say that they’ve very generously allowed me to make a guest post. I talk a little about my background as the person behind the pseudonym (not that interesting) and future novels in the Vertex series (slightly more interesting).

My guest post is just a small part of their 4th year blogaversary celebration, a month-long event which includes a giveaway of not just Monster but a ton of other awesome mm romance and gay fiction novels. Head on over and leave a comment before midnight of October 31 (EST) for a chance to win a copy of Monster. Be sure to check out the other author guest posts as well!
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Published on October 28, 2016 03:05

October 20, 2016

Monster sale!

It's not a monstrous sale, per se, rather an announcement that  Monster is on sale for $0.99 for a limited time only. The response has been good so far, and the reviews and comments the novel has been getting are more than decent. In all honesty I’m just amazed that real, live human beings are dropping their hard-earned money on the book at all. And liking it, too. Who knew?

It feels incredibly validating to know that somewhere out there are people who actually enjoy what I write. And really, isn’t that the goal for every author, for the general public to love and adore the immoral excretions you squirt out that barely pass for genre fiction? 

But I digress. TL;DR: It’s just 99 cents. Go get it! Not your preferred seller? Visit my site for other places to pick up your copy.

Thank you. You’re the best.
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Published on October 20, 2016 21:08

September 28, 2016

It's ALIVE

by Soren Summers ( @SorenSummers ) PictureI do not have the words left to express how liberating it is to finally unleash my deformed spawn unto the earth. Frankly I think that should be forgivable since I’m pretty much out of things to say at this point. It’s been slightly over 88,000 words later, give or take the several thousand that fell victim to a multiple harsh rounds of editing.

It’s a cathartic sense of release. That’s all I feel. A little numb, maybe, perhaps because the reality of finally publishing something hasn’t quite set in just yet. I admit that there’s a bit of a buzz thrumming through my body right now, and it’s not from vodka. I was joking about that one tweet, I promise.

Perhaps the best course of action is to crawl between the sheets and get some sleep for now. As horrible as his life turns out in Monster even Jarod gets some rest, after all. Maybe play some video games, watch a bunch of stuff in the morning to sort of fill up my cup. And then it’s on to work on the next book. I confess that I’m still thoroughly exhausted from all this, but it’s exhilarating as well. This is exciting as hell.

Here’s to all the best for Monster. May you fare well, my hideous, tentacled progeny.

Available now:  Amazon  |  Amazon.co.uk  |  Apple  |  Inktera  |  Kobo  |
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Published on September 28, 2016 01:00

September 15, 2016

Monster Prerelease: Birthing New Horrors

by Soren Summers ( @SorenSummers )PictureIt’s so hard to believe this is actually happening. The cover’s complete, the text is going through one final pass, and then it’s off to the copyright office. I actually thought that Monster might be getting a later release, but it’s about time. This thing has been in the percolator for over a year now and it doesn’t deserve more scrubbing. 

True story: I started writing Monster after taking out the garbage. I live in suburban SoCal, where the trash goes into those neat plastic bins that you wheel out to the sidewalk on Fridays. I visited my sister in Los Angeles last year, staying at her apartment complex where everyone just tosses their garbage into a communal dumpster. 

That bastard was huge, like the gaping maw of some iron titan just waiting motionless for someone to come by with another offering. I imagined the rest of its body stuck underneath the asphalt, its belly churning like some horrible furnace, an incinerator. It was on one of those nights after feeding the beast that it struck me. You could totally fit a dead body in there. 

Several, even, stacked on top of each other, and maybe you could maximize the space if you chopped them up and arranged them nice-like. That gave me the idea for what Monster’s protagonist does for a living. He takes out the garbage, though not necessarily in the conventional sense. 

Everything sprouted from that point on. When Jarod Samuels came to life the rest of the mysterious corporation he works for began to take shape around him. That said, this might be a sign that I need to be more welcoming about doing chores. 

Perhaps my brain will scrape the bottom of the barrel and I’ll end up writing about a dishwasher who unknowingly works for a cannibal restaurant. Or something about a man who cuts grass and ends up becoming a test subject for experiments on virtual reality. That doesn’t sound too bad, actually. Now if only I could figure out a title. Something like The LawnmowerGuy.

It’s strange how terrifying this all is considering I spend a huge chunk of my time consuming and creating horror. Scratch that: this is one of the scariest things I’ve ever had to do. This is something I’ve made with my own hands and that mushy thing I keep in my skull. It’s exhilarating, exhausting, but above all things else, tremendously exciting.

So here we are at the finish line. Monster just needs to be birthed into the world, moles, tentacles, and all. Catharsis. Gotta let it go or I’ll never be done with it. And to think that I have to go through this process several times over for the rest of my life. Wait. I’m an author now! Let me rephrase that. I don’t have to. I get to. 
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Published on September 15, 2016 17:03

August 13, 2016

And So it Begins

by Soren Summers ( @SorenSummers )Baby's first blog post. The start of a journey? Lol.Photo: Redd Angelo
​You don’t know me. I don’t know you. Not yet, at least, but I’d like to. I'm fairly shy, to be honest, but I do like people, probably because I'm curious and inquisitive, which is a pretty way of saying that I'm kind of a gossip. The trait's come in handy, especially back when I used to work in lifestyle journalism and public relations. But now it’s all about fiction.

Let's Talk About Specs

I won’t mince words. Everything that goes here will cover things that interest me, mainly stuff pertaining to the darker aspects of horror, romance, fantasy, and science fiction, in whatever form that might take. I love entertainment across the spectrum – you might say it was part of my job description – so if it’s gritty, creepy, or mildly depressing, I’m all in. Films, books, video games, whatever. And if you’re into the same stuff, then I’d love to have you along for the ride. 

Oh, and there will be boy talk. I realize that doesn’t quite fit into the grand scheme of things but come on, I write gay romance. And up until my last boyfriend I lived gay romance, but hey, that’s neither here nor there. But yes, there will be discussions about the many wonderful merits of boys and men, as well as the body parts that specifically make them so wonderful. And if you’re into the same stuff, then we should probably be best friends.

All this to say that there are two main forces driving my work, the same ones that spur us on in our lives: fear and love. It’s crazy just how much I’ve learned about both over the course of writing my first few books. The fear is the strongest. Will anyone even care about what I’ve created? What will I do with myself if I don’t succeed at this? 

Fear and Loathing

I was – and still am – constantly afraid of failure, but I’ve pressed on regardless because I know in my gut that this is something I was meant to do. It’s cliched as hell but my chest hurts if it fills up with too many things left untold or unsaid, but when it’s three in the morning and I’m hacking away at the keyboard my fingers feel like they’re flying and my heart soars and sings. 

As a fan of fiction, I’m sure you know this as well as I do. Writing, or really any creative endeavor, it’s like magic. You’re actually creating worlds from the tips of your fingers. For a scant few hours you cease being human and become this all-powerful other creature, this thing that is only capable of making and making more and more beauty. For the smallest span of time fear ceases to exist, and all that remains is your body hollowed out and filled with the purest passion for what you truly love to do.

Looking back over my manuscripts I didn’t even realize how strongly those two forces came into play. Each of the novels follows people who act out of fear in order to protect everything they love. It's a pattern as old as the spoken word itself, and for good reason. 

Influential Forces

Fear and love are fundamental, so primal and powerful that they weave neatly into every narrative, even into the thirty-second pitch that nearly every industry in the world uses to sell you its wares. Preserve your beauty, or no one will love you. Buy insurance, or risk losing everything you hold dear. 

It's hard to fight something that's so ingrained in modern society that it assaults you from every angle. I think I've come to embrace it in a way. I’m afraid of everything. I love horror to bits, even though I always need to sleep with the lights on after watching even the tamest movies. And like everyone I yearn for love, whether romantic, filial, or friendly. 

I blame my favorite authors for driving me straight into this bizarre intersection: Anne Rice and her supernatural sensuality, Chuck Palahniuk and his love of shock and human horror, and HP Lovecraft for staining the genre forever with despair and madness. Oh, and for birthing the things that will someday consume us all.

So to sum up, if you’re into dark fantasy, romantic horror, beautiful boys, and the occasional ramble about the writing process, then I invite you to stick around for what’s to come. You just might enjoy yourself. Sign up for the newsletter and bag a free book . Say hello in the comments, even. I won’t bite, I promise. Here, I’ll start.

Hi there. I’m Soren. It’s nice to meet you.
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Published on August 13, 2016 00:05