Sunday, December 30, 2012

Welcome To Downing City

The Faction Stories, Volume Two

Being a teenager is hard enough without putting on a mask and making mortal enemies. But when you have both, and a part time job, things are little more complicated.

Edgar, Rachel, Alex, Celeste, Laura and Susan joined forces to save the their classmates at Red Bug Regional High School from a sinister group that was picking the students off one at a time. The team worked a little better than they had expected and now, they’re stuck… as the Apathetic Avengers.

With the FBI as their secret backers, they begin to discover that Red Bug, Downing City and Freemont County, Iowa, are not nearly as innocent and na├»ve as they thought. And they weren't the only ones who shouldn't have been in the playground…

Coming Soon on Nook, Kindle and Smashwords! 

Estimated arrival date, February 5th! Keep your eyes peeled...

Once Upon a Time, in a Town Called Kearny...

I've been writing since I was knee high to a grasshopper, as they say. I was known for it in high school. "Hey, J., written any more of that story?" "J., how's that story going to end?" "Where do you get these whacked out ideas?" 

Wasn't really a shock to anyone that I went to college for English. Lit was really the only choice, but a minor in Journalism came in handy when I graduated. I went to write for a newspaper, and then became a news assistant at a bigger paper, then a layout artist at the big paper. Then I got stuck and changed careers. 

(Trust me, the story's not really that simple... but the whole thing would take me at least three chapters of a book, and --- snooze...)

The new career took me away from here. To places I thought I wanted to go, but didn't really. I missed the old places. And I missed it so much that I signed up for Facebook. 

Yeah, remember? Facebook wasn't S.O.P for everyone once up a time, so it was novel. Woot, woot, look at me being all hip and with it. Yeah. 

Anyway-- there I was down in Places Too Far Away to Mention and I got a text message. Or was it a bbm? 

Yeah, that was a thing too. 

Whatever it was, up pops an old schoolmate from Kearny. Simon, it turns out, is into writing now as well. Pssht. Whatevs. Well, he sends me what he's writing and by jove, dude CAN write. Delightful. Takes me a while to warm up to the whole idea of talking to someone who doesn't give me weird looks or question my sanity about things that I'm saying, writing, doing. But I do and we chat. A lot. 

At first, we try collaborating on something that very quickly either bellyflopped or got ignored for something else were both writing. One day, he came at me with: 

"Hey. I had this idea about these teenage superheroes..." 

What now? I like superheroes. I like writing. I'm not a teenager, thank God. I'm in. 

At first, our Apathetic Avengers were way, way, WAY more Apathetic than you'll find them to be. I mean, one of our first scenes (written out of order as any good writer is apt to do) was Rachel sitting on a cop car, peeling the nail polish off and flicking it away. I believe that Celeste didn't even have a mask on, and may have been spinning a wig on her finger like she was some Globetrotter. 

But as we went along and other stories began to pop up, they started to take a more serious bend. When we hit the story with our first death (not theirs), I knew that we had to take everything more seriously. 

And so did they. Er, uh and so we did. 

See, that's the problem with writing. You don't know where you end and your characters begin. They become people in your mind and you can have conversations with them. I know more than once, Rachel and I have argued about something. 

No. That's not weird, thank you. 

I'm editing Book 2 with an eye of having it live on Jan 5 st (as you can see by the previous post, I'm working feverishly!), no later. Meanwhile, please, enjoy Faction Volume 1: Apathetic Avengers
For Kindle
And  Nook

Tell your friends! Buy them a copy! Enjoy a little escapism. 

And if you have questions, email us.

~~J. Rose

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Good news!

Good news, people!

We've uploaded to! What does that mean? Well, if you're one of the people out there who doesn't have a Kindle or Nook, you can buy the book now! This includes: Apple iPad/iBooks, Sony Reader, Kobo, Palm Readers and most e-reading apps including Stanza, Aldiko, and Adobe Digital Editions. It's also available to read online! You can read a sample there. 

We wanted to include everyone in our availability, and it came to our attention that nook doesn't really have a market overseas- you Brits and Aussies prefer your Kobos. And Smashwords can offer you the right format.

So, please: Check us out, and better still review us! 

Apathetic Avengers - Smashwords 

What Editing Looks Like

Technology is an awesome force. And Simon and I do better with the use of it. We had no idea we were spelling villain wrong and would have been blissfully unaware if not for spell check and auto-correct.

Because, honestly, I just spelled it wrong again.

However, when all the writing, back and forth, and discussion is done, there is nothing as satisfying as taking a red pen to the paper and marking the ever-living crap out of a printed page. 

Having been in the newspaper biz, editing loses something when it's done on a screen. There is something satisfying about seeing those red marks on a page, knowing each of them moves to improve the story. Hopefully making more enjoyable -- or at the very least, readable!

Check us out, see if you agree!
Apathetic Avengers - Kindle
Apathetic Avengers - Nook 

Friday, December 28, 2012

Welcome to Red Bug, Iowa

I guess we should give you a little more information about the story we have going here, right? I'm sure someone out there is going to have questions. 

You've met the first of our books: The Apathetic Avengers, and you're probably wondering why it's subtitled "The Faction Stories" and why we're calling the blog "Faction: The Downing City Chronicles"-- Well, lucky for you by the end of the third book, you'll understand. I don't want to put too many spoilers out there just yet, but suffice to say our heroes are dynamic. 

You're thinking: "Third book. Isn't that the end of the story?" 

No, my dear readers, is it not. It is merely the end of their summer. Our first section in this story covers only the formation of the Apathetic Avengers, their summer before Junior Year and part of the school year. 

Don't sweat this though. The way we've set this up is: each volume is actually a collection of chronological short stories. If you check out The Timeline Page over there ~~> you'll see we have a guide of what's happening when. As we finish each division of our stories, we'll update with newest and where they fall and what volume there in. 

Each of our Parts -- Year One- Part 1 and 2, Year Two- Part 1 and 2 -- will have no less than 2 volumes and no more than 4 (...we hope).

What we have up right now is Year One- Part 1. We're finalizing Year One- Part 2 as we speak. We've also got enough writing and story arcs that we're probably going to offer up a "Lost Stories Volume" at the end of Year One- Part 2. 

Why short stories? 

Because we like our characters. We like to play with them, and mess around with them, and put them in awkward situations to tease out their characters and quirks and foibles. We also have WAY too much fun with Rachel and Edgar interacting. We think there are enough situations to put them individually that we would lose half, or better, of the really fun stuff -- the danger, the personal challenges, their interactions, the chance to develop -- if we put them in a single novel. Or even in two. 

So you get short stories. Makes it easier to put the book down and go to bed, too. Most of them have distinct resolutions to the immediate story even as we work on moving our story arc and characters forward. You won't go to bed wondering if Rachel is actually going to turn Celeste into a toad. 

At least, in that story. 

So, read and enjoy. 
And please-- Review us!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Apathetic Avengers

Teenage superheroes  ... in Iowa?

The Faction Stories, Volume One

The only thing Rachel Hingis hated more than swimming was having to play well with others. Edgar Fern, nerd extraordinaire, couldn't find anyone to play with. Life would have been just fine if they never crossed paths. 

Instead, they collided.

The victims of an accidental experiment deep in the corn fields of Iowa, they and four others -Alex, Celeste, Laura and Susan – were changed, and not necessarily for the better. As a mysterious group, [Insert Sinister Title Here], starts to pick off the students, they have a choice to make: become victims, or become heroes.

The bumpy road to being a masked avenger is fraught with conflict, mystery, explosions-- and Freezees.

Watch for these masked avengers to appear in your ereader--

Available on Nook, Kobo and Kindle.

Coming soon-- paperback!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Welcome to Faction's Blog!

We are J. Rose Alexander and Simon Archibald, the creators of Faction. We are proud to present the first three volumes of The Faction Stories-- Apathetic Avengers, Welcome to Downing City, and The Natural Order of Things

Here is where you'll get updates on the stories-- both the published novels and forthcoming volumes.

Apathetic Avengers Nook
Apathetic Avenger Kindle

Coming soon to Smashwords, Barnes and Noble and Kindle! 

These stories are written as young adult novels, but please keep in mind that some of the themes are dark; as such we recommend these for more mature young adults.