Welcome to this December 2022 edition of Hackwriters. 24 years on-line, 7902+ articles - reviews - stories - travel - share any feature you like and pass them on.
December 17th 2022 - Strikes, Freezing temperatures, a UK winter of discontent
|Editorial: Second Chances
It's bloody cold. Freezing fog and minus 4c over much of the UK (-13c in Scotland). Gas prices soaring and one has to be brave to have the heating on. How the hell are people in Ukraine coping with -20c and no power or water or sewage? Putin might well succeed in destroying all of Ukraine but that's 44 million lifelong enemies of Russia who will have nothing to lose in taking revenge for the rest of their lives.
James Campion discusses Republican Terrorism and Jan 6th as the GOP prepare to take over Congress. Indiana Lee says make that career change you've always wanted now!
* I've had my booster shot - have you had yours? The hospitals are filling up with covid cases again and over 65,000 are catching it in the USA every day right now with 460 dying daily. Don't wait. Get vaccinated. Get the 'flu jab whilst you're about it. Just don't go near a British hospital right now.
Good to see the Rev Warnock succeed in Georgia and Trump's man lose. Are we seeing the beginning of the end of Trumpism or is that just wishful thinking? Sadly De Santis is even more deadly ...
As for me, the one great thing about nearly dying on an operating table is realising you are still alive. Don’t underrate surviving. I resolved on my temporary recovery bed to take a little vacation just to prove I’m still here. OK a bit weaker than before I lost all the blood and still worried about that ‘oops’ word the cardiac specialist let escape after three and half hours of trying to get the fifth stent into my artery. (Bit like stuffing a turkey) He did say ‘you’re good for ten years now’ as his parting gesture; which is better than the ‘I give you six months - tops’ from the kidney specialist back in March this year. (I’m in the ninth month right now).
So, as soon as I could move around again, I caught the Eurostar to Paris, then the TGV to Biarritz to stay a few days with old friends Lionel and Catherine. Peeing whilst a train is travelling at 310 kmh is a novelty but surprisingly smooth. The catering on the train is dire but you learn to bring your own sandwiches pretty quickly.
My friends refused to believe I was at death’s door just three weeks before as apparently I looked so well. But then they didn’t see me walking up the darn hills in Biarritz, which is possible, but a struggle these days. But it’s worth it to have coffee and chocolate cake at the Café Royal. Oddly enough chocolate cake is considered health food in France! I also managed a visit to the Royale Cinema to see 'Amersterdam' a comedy thriller I missed earlier. Margot Robbie is amazing but Christian Bale is not a comic actor and I forgot the rule that if De Niro is in it - it's a stinker. Certainly it messes with history which I always find distressing. Not as distressing as falling flat on my face outside the cinema from a loose manhole cover. Seems they are digging up all the streets in Biarritz ....
Normally I visit France in summer, so I shouldn’t have been surprised by the incessant deluge that faced me everyday. The ocean was spectacular, the huge rolling waves crashing against the shore are always invigorating, and the air makes you feel alive. For the first time in months I felt I could write again and even started a new book about a man restoring an old car. (I’ve written at least eight books in Biarritz, it’s my go to place for inspiration). This time, fortified by reading Jim Harrison’s ‘The Ancient Minstrel’ (not for woke readers for sure) and a Deon Meyer thriller ‘The Last Hunt’ which clearly demonstrates the consequences of ‘State Capture’ and corruption in the ANC in the economic collapse of South Africa. Manifesting itself in the current President being found guilty of mislaying millions hidden in his sofa (Yes his sofa). ( Politicians don't resign anymore or feel shame for corruption). I guess there are no alternatives in the ANC who haven't got dirty hands or actually had someone murdered who got in their way. Can SA survive five more years of their corrupt rule?
Sadly I had to return to the UK – only five days in France, but at least I have been reset and can think about a future. Once I get through winter that is. It was 16c in Biarritz and they were feeling the cold. Its 1c back home and only 8c inside my house at the moment. I need to light a fire pronto.
I’m going to have to find a warm place to write this winter. I already miss the café I found in France where I was surrounded by Gen Z workers with their laptops clearly very focused on their tasks. Very inspiring. My new story is based on an idea I had a long time ago, no plot, just see where it goes. A road trip beckons for my character.
Meanwhile stay warm this December and watch your pennies. More to come. I suspect this may be the last monthly issue but that's ok we've had a long run.
*My new mystery novel The Book of Ashes is now published - a murder at Christmas - just what you needed to read. Download or order the print version now.
'an immensely satisfying story' - Walli Leff on Goodreads.
© Sam Hawksmoor - Editor - December 2022
The Book of Ashes
New from Sam Hawksmoor
Hammer & Tong August 2022 - print and kindle
'an immensely satisfying story' -
Walli Leff on Goodreads.
I miss you so much... even when you’re right here
||The Book of Ashes -
Some secrets are meant to be kept forever
Delaney and Asha run their own investigation company now. Hired to find a writer who stiffed a client of $10,000 - things go bad pretty fast.
"This was supposed to be a simple track and trace job. Find the writer, bank the money. Now it's a horror show."
'We Feel Your Pain'
by Sam Hawksmoor
Published by Hammer & Tong
Print or Kindle from Amazon
||We Feel Your Pain – So you don’t have to.
Delaney (42) and Asha (22) run the Office of Berg City Oversight. Their role is to expose the scams, keep the city safe from unscrupulous people. When something looks too good to be true – it’s a scam, right? But what if the scam works? What kind of scam is that?
how far will you go to save one life?
Gerry is convinced aliens are going to attack on Millennium Eve - Y2K night. Everyone else is preparing for the end of civilisation. When it happens only Gerry notices aliens land. He and his spacenut pals Jolene and Kali race to be the first to greet them...
'Climate change, lost alien civilisations, adventures in deep space. Great fun with endearing characters'. Kitty Thomas
The Sam North Novels - still available to order Amazon or Lulu
*Keeping Hackwriters archived is supported by sales of our books - so do buy, print or kindle, we aren't picky.
Magenta - A chilling story of kidnapping, burning and strangeness set in the wilds of Lincolnshire
** The Heaviness, & The Repercussions of Tomas D - 'best time travel WW2 story in a long while'
The new edition of 'ANOTHER PLACE TO DIE: ENDTIME CHRONICLES
By Sam Hawksmoor & Sam North
There's no safe place to hide from a lethal pandemic
Print & Kindle - Q&A interview with the authors here
A city gripped by fear. People are petrified of being thrown into quarantine. Best friends Kira and Liz once parted are scared they will never see each other again. Teen lovers, Chris and Rachel, prepare to escape to the islands.
a taster here The Last Ferry
Review from the First Edition:
'Beautiful, plausible, and sickeningly addictive, Another Place to Die: Endtime will terrify you, thrill you, and make you petrified of anyone who comes near you...'
Roxy West - Amazon.co.uk
||Girl with Cat (Blue) - Shortlisted for the Rubery International Book Award
'a funny, bloody, colorful narrative that never fails to surprise the reader. Girl with Cat (Blue) provides great entertainment'.
'This book was amazing! I was hooked from the first few pages and couldn't put the book down.'
26th Annual Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards. - Honorable Mention
|J&K 4Ever - A post-apocalypse love story
Sixty years after the end of everything the city of Bluette survives, controlled by a malignant sect. A place where men rule, girls receive no education and are matched at 16 to the highest bidder. No one is ever permitted to leave the city and outside is a murderous wasteland of despair. Orphans Kruge and Jeyna have been devoted to each other through all the years of terror in this harsh regime and sworn never to be parted. But the beautiful Jeyna has been betrayed by the Warden. Kruge has been swiftly banished to the Scraps, under the control of the Keeper. Jeyna is heartbroken; she will not accept her fate and escapes to find Kruge.
'A genuine romance in a bleak but plausible and terrifying setting'.
||MARIKKA- exclusively on Amazon Print and kindle 2
Based on a tragic real life event, Marikka flees from an arson attack on her home to the sea, where she meets Starfish boy – a runaway working for Jackson, a scarred man hiding a sinister secret from the world. Meanwhile her real father searches for her with the aide of Anya, ‘the girl who can read objects’. More about the writing of this book
‘Long after my tears dried, my heart stayed with Marikka, Starfish Boy and the strange girl who reads objects.’ CT
You will smile, you will gasp with shock, and you will struggle to read the words through your tears. Gemma Williams - Amazon.co.uk
|Spy/Romance thriller set during the Blitz in WW2 - Kindle download
The Repercussions of Tomas D
A Hero? Or Englands Greatest Traitor? USA Paperback here
'Disturbing and very poignant YA love story that presents a chilling alternate future for an England that lost the war.' Marcel d'Agneau
'A brilliant imagining of living in the Blitz, well researched.' Amazon UK
'This is Man in the High Castle for teens and scarily plausible '
*download the Kindle version or buy the paperback from Hammer & Tong
||'The Heaviness' for any reader who likes to think about such things as betrayal, revenge, relationships and the laws of gravity. An original Genie Magee story
Genie & Renée have just 36 hours to save Rian or he dies
'Without a doubt, one of the best YA Sci Fi series out there.' Evie Seo - Bookish
Kindle & print
Thanks to readers who have been buying this title.
* Also published as Rüya by Marti Yayincilik - The Turkish publishers of TOZ & Golge
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