Thanks so much for allowing me this wonderful opportunity.
Aaron Dennis, here. Creator of the Lokians science fiction series and owner of www.dennisauthor.com.
There are a great many sci-fi fans out there and all of them like some unique aspect of the wonderfully diverse genre. From Dystopian fantasies to Space Operas, there’s always a few key similarities, usually involving alien technology, futuristic concepts, or even interdimensional travel.
Recently, I’ve seen many Dystopian novels come to life while the silver screen is focusing on action and that makes me wonder just what this new generation is looking for. I’m only 29, so I guess I’m part of that new generation and I know what I like, and that’s why I wrote the Lokians series.
Being an independently published author affords a few benefits but also some very serious obstacles. I find, by taking a look on Twitter, that most indie authors support one another, which is absolutely terrific, but they lack that fan base to really help them become successful. After all, who follows athletes? T.v. stars? Actors? Fans, right? So what can we indie authors to gain in that aspect?
Personally, I enjoy doing books signings, posting in web-based groups where there are no authors, creating interactive web pages for others to contribute, and so forth, but that isn’t enough. Many other key points come into play. First of all, we need to create a story that blows the minds of our fans. With Lokians: Book1 Beyond the End of the World, I provided a few concepts not normally in sci-fi, at least not modern sci-fi.
One such concept is real technology. This bestows the brand of Hard Sci-Fi, or sci-fi loosely based on fact. I also included some religious concepts, genetic theory, and some very unique aliens, the likes of which I’ve never seen anywhere. All that coupled with completely diverse characters and a relatable enemy helped bring the story to life.
Now, with Book2 They Lurk Among Us, I delved into some of the more common conspiracy theories like government cover-ups, secret organizations, and obviously aliens ensconced in Earth government. The great thing here is, when posting on line, I can target several groups, which may or may not even be sci-fi fans but my writing crosses the borders into various other genres, all the while keeping true to sci-fi.
So, with those books under my belt, it’s now time to move on to the third installment. Let it be noted, this is by no means a trilogy and will continue indefinitely. Once all three books are in print, I can create a wonderful portfolio with professional reviews (and you should pay for these because professional reviewers will target fans instead of other indie authors), artwork, trailers, other products (like t-shirts, banners, posters, ect) and bring it all to the Licensing Expo.
They say we should write for the love of it, not the money, and that most authors do not make a living from their writing. Well, I challenge those beliefs, and further more, I challenge the existing hits of my genre like Star Trek, Starwars (which is really a futuristic fantasy adventure and not sci-fi because none of the technology is explained and it involves a guy swinging a sword and casting magical mind spells), plus all these are old concepts and it’s time for something new. That’s why the new Star Trek movie was such a hit. It bridged a generational gap.
All this, paired with creating an interactive environment, will help to spur the Lokian Invasion forward. I just added a new page to my website where I invite all artists of all ages and skill level to submit their concept art based on my novels. Not only does this help promote my books, it promotes the undiscovered artist. Everyone wins, me, the fans, the artists. I wrote my first story, a short, in April or May of 2011, and less than two years later, I have three books in print. It’s the work, time, and effort that we put in as authors, promoters, and fans, that creates an entire world for people to share.
Once this project moves forward, full-steam ahead, I can devote time to writing something entirely different, and with a modicum of success, a literary agency may be more inclined to take my work seriously and provide it to a major publishing house. My Lokians series will always remain indie published, as it is after all my baby and I need absolute control over my content, but my goal in life is to be a rich author, and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that. Do we hate on Stephen King? Anne Rice? Dan Brown? Should we not aspire to do our best and provide for those we love? I hope everyone can benefit from what I’ve proposed and I also hope to learn from those around me. For anyone who would like to know more about me, or my work, you can find me here.
Links to everything I do and have done are on this website as well as links to other authors and the like.
With the release of Lokians: Book2 They Lurk Among Us scheduled for November 1st and the completion of Lokians: Book3 For War and Glory, I’d like to add an excerpt from each. Please keep in mind For War and Glory will not be finished for a little while longer.
Lokians: Book 1 Beyond the End of the World
The bug hit the ground. Jun and
walked over to it. It looked like a small football, a brown bulbous insect with
no eyes or mouth. The four legs were of steel composition. It looked like a
scout of sorts, or it would have, if it were pieced back together. The bullet
caused the exoskeletal structure to burst. A viscous, rusty colored ooze slowly
poured onto the cold ground. A few more came out of different tunnels.
The Captain quickly took control of the situation and yelled to his crew mates.
“Take cover behind the gray mounds.”
As the men and aliens took their position, a familiar sound echoed throughout. O’Hara’s eyes grew wide. A tunneler was coming. All right, where are you. Son of a— a small rock fell onto his helmet from above. He slowly looked up to find the ceiling was shaking softly.
“It’s on top of us,” O’Hara exclaimed.
The crew spread out as more, larger portions of stone fell from above, some large enough to crush the small mounds. White glistening dust erupted from the wreckage.
Franklin spotted a small alcove beside a building and
stowed his riches.
“Take out the bugs,”
“They’re probably scouts,”
Ton and Sura fired plasma weapons at the bugs. For each one they killed, two more came crawling from the hole-riddled walls. The ceiling suddenly gave way and the tunneler fell through, tentacles extended. In full view, the tunneler was more intimidating than expected. It was a full twelve feet across with several rows of dangerous teeth. The insect was a large tapered roach with two tentacles reaching away from the mechanical mouth. It did not have eyes or proper legs. As it fell, with dust and debris, the crew saw several tiny metallic hooks protruding from its belly. The hooks functioned as anchors slowly inching the beast forward when moving on sloped ground. It hit the mounds with a thundering blow. As it writhed, the crew laid into it.
“Get in there,” O’Hara yelled, firing repeated shots into the enemies flank.
Hun-Tan and Un-It took the forefront and fired plasma rifles.
“Yes,” Hun-Tan yelled.
“More fire power,” Un-It added.
As the beast wriggled upright, for balance, the two Thewls back peddled and took cover behind remnants of a roof. The comm units were wild with grunts and war cries. Soon, the tunneler spun itself by using its tentacles. As it turned, it picked up a great deal of speed. Chunks of bug exoskeleton popped off as it gained momentum. Confused, the crew eased back in apprehension. Suddenly, it erupted acid with a vulgar belch. Toxic bile spilled out in a full circle, but no one was caught outright by the blast. Some splatter hit the closest members with little effect. Though the armor was resistant the acid began corroding the plating. Korit fired a massive burst of plasma into the Lokian’s brown, pulsating flank. A huge hole was the result of the impact. While most of the crew were battling the tunneler, a few of the others were blasting bugs,
Franklin and Adams called for back up.
“Sara, DeReaux, Fitzpatrick,”
“Jun and Flem, over here,”
Both members of the Bureau had their batons out.
“The bugs are scurrying up to the ceiling and working their way through the rubble around the mounds. They’re looking for something. Keep an eye out,”
Sura and Ton tried to keep gunning down the bugs but a new threat was emerging from the tunnels. Agile Lokians jumped out and made their way for anything that wasn’t on their side. These Lokians had four long grasshopper-like legs attached to a metal disc. The legs were attached by way of ball-joints allowing the legs to swivel in any direction. The disc was a silvery piece of metal three feet across and one foot thick. From a small hole in the disc, the Lokian torso emerged. The torso was similar to the earlier crab-like brawlers but lacked the back plate allowing for better movement. In place of four arms, were two massive arms with large pincers at the end. Their heads were large too. They looked like hammer head sharks with eyes pointed forward. Deep, ugly, vein covered, black eyes filled with hatred. Their large mouths were covered in small legs or fingers used to maneuver food into the orifice.
“What the fuck is that?” Fitzpatrick gasped.
The legs of a hopper gripped the walls and flung itself at Sura’s back. It gripped her thighs anchoring itself squarely behind her as she yelled in pain. The massive pincers locked around her neck and she dropped her gun to clutch its arms. Ton fired at it a second too late. The small blue-green charge nailed the Lokian knocking both it and Sura to the ground. Her head rolled away from her body. Ton growled in sorrow and rage.
Adams was close enough to reach the Lokian. He
made a run for it, red batons blazing. A second hopper landed between him and
the grounded one stopping him in his tracks.
“Aarrgh! Bastard,” he screamed.
During the emergence of the new threat, Korit had blasted two more holes in the tunneler. Mortally wounded, the beast hissed then grew still. Sara and Imes were firing at the newly arrived hoppers but the scouts were creeping everywhere, including the two soldiers’ legs. While they posed no real physical threat, they were annoying. A total of six hoppers emerged from the tunnels. Hun-Tan and Un-it split up running in opposite directions as one made its way to them. It leaped and bound about the crew. Fitzpatrick and DeReaux caught on to the situation. They fired from behind some mounds but they, too, were being overrun with scouts.
“Piece of shit,” Fitzpatrick yelled as she crushed one with the butt of her rifle.
Lokians: Book 2 They Lurk Among Us
“I don’t know, fighting our way through what, a couple dozen? A hundred? How many Grays are on a vessel? I think we should play it carefully in this case. We don’t really know what we’re up against,” Sasha suggested.
Riley nodded, he knew she was right, but the arrival of Korit and the others would change the tide, they would be a small army, a spec ops team once more.
“True enough, but once we untie with my old crew and the Thewls we’ll be a devastating force again. We really could board one of their vessels,” Riley started.
“Da, only fighting Gray mind power iz difficult, no?” Ivan added.
“That’s true. It would be nice to have access to a mind neutralizing device or maybe some ammunition packed with sedatives. I think we need to get as few as possible separated and take them out. Hopefully, we can keep one alive. That’s really all we can do. Everyone’s safety is more important than the mission,” Riley stated.
“You think your crew knows about all this?” Sasha asked.
“If they’re with John, they know every bit we do. This means they’ll likely have a plan already in mind, plus the input of the Thewls,” Riley explained.
“O.K. so we lure them out? How?” Sasha inquired.
Riley rubbed his forehead with both hands. The pacing and stress caused him to sweat a little so he removed his pinstripe jacket. He threw it on the bridge console, a few feet away.
“I don’t know. We baited the Lokians with a distress signal. We indicated we had found civilization or something. We added that we required assistance, so we gave our position. They picked up our signal and sent a few scouts. Those scouts were the transporters we needed. At the time, we had Mittins, so we were invisible to their scanners. Much like now with this ship. Stealth and surprise is a definite positive starter. This is going to be a little different, though,” he said as he grew pensive.
Riley took a long inhalation and attempted to gather himself.
“What the fuck are you talking about?” Sasha inquired bluntly.
“Listen, luring them out is better than approaching a Teragon, agreed?” he clarified.
“If we manage to bait them, reason suggests, they’ll appear with a Betagon, and perhaps a detail of fighters. If we wipe out the fighters, we can disable the Betagon. Far as I can figure, there will be no way to ground the enemy vessel, so we’ll have to board it and try to extract one living Gray. The question then is, will there be a Gray at the entrance that we can capture, or will we have to work our way through the Betagon and fight?” Riley explained.
“Iz good question for sure. I think from reports if ve don’t find vay to secure one small ship, ve vill fight many or fight Betagon. Vith whole crew, how many ve have?” Ivan asked.
“Let’s see, Korit for sure, John, Swain, Sara, DeReaux. That’s my guess. Last I heard, Fitzpatrick was on her way here to Mars. Also, the Admiral may have sent extra Thewls with Korit. Let’s assume we have a total of ten. A Betagon holds what, like eighty Grays?” Suddenly Riley came to grips with the scenario.
“Eighty midgets with mind powers. They’ll turn our assholes inside out,” Sasha commented.
Riley and Ivan could not contain their laughter. While Ivan sank into the couch holding his sides Riley stumbled over to the recliner and fell into it. After a few moments, he regained his composure. Apparently, Sasha had not been laughing.
“Well?” she asked.
“Uhh…Yeah, but there’ll be less than that because we’ll disable their ship. A safe estimate, after casualties, maybe a dozen, and they’ll be spread thin throughout the vessel. This will work. I’m all over it,” Riley said with a smile.
“I vant hear crew’s input. Maybe they have better suggestions,” Ivan remarked.
“Yeah, won’t be too much longer,” he replied.
Riley and crew spent the remaining time gathering their gear. Afterwards, Riley powered on the Clandestine and checked the readout systems for ships in their vicinity. A few moments passed before signatures spiked. The readout was indicative of the materialization of the Carrier. It appeared to be on the outskirts of Uranus. As Riley kept his eyes on the signature, he saw three vessels appear on the monitor. The Thewls were coming.
Riley knew that there was no conventional way to pick up on the position of the Clandestine. Moreover, it was grounded on a planet’s surface. So, he put the zero-gravity generator into overdrive, to increase magnetic output. He then disabled the magnetism reducer, to stop from masking said output. Suddenly, the console monitor indicated one vessel was locked onto the Clandestine. Riley smiled to himself and gathered Ivan and Sasha.
“All right guys, it’s almost time to meet them outside. They should be here shortly,” Riley announced.
After a few, painstakingy slow, hours moved by, the three met in the airlock where Riley inspected their gear. As always, Ivan was in his veritable tank of a suit and Sasha in her sleek war wear. The red light came on and they stepped out onto Mars’s surface. It was nighttime and the sky overhead was clear. A red dust storm whirled in the distance. The night sky made it look brown.
In his form-fitting, black attire, Riley gazed into the night. The stars were brilliant. Three streaks broke through the planet’s atmosphere with a beautiful red tail created by the heat from atmospheric penetration. The prospect of a reunion, coupled with the promise of a mission, was exhilarating.
“Here they come,” he announced.
Sasha and Ivan were both a little nervous. Observing their leader’s composed demeanor allowed them to relax a little. The Type-A’s came in first. Their unique wing structure swirled about the vessels as they manuevered for a landing. A gust of wind emanated from the ships when they stopped in mid-hover, a few feet from the rocky ground. Then the landing pylons emerged and the field generated hatches opened. A moment later, the oblong Scouter arrived. As it touched down, the two Thewl fighter pilots hopped out of their vessels and approached Riley, Sasha, and Ivan. The Humans looked upon their immense stature.
“I’m Riley, this is Sasha and Ivan,” Riley said as he pointed out his crew.
“I am Nuf-Pota,” the male Thewl spoke.
Rota,” the female announced.
The two Thewls stood at an equal height. Their black armor suggested which of them was male and female.
breastplate accentuated her feminine structure.
“Glad to meet you. As soon as Korit and the others step out, we’ll decide where to meet for battle plans,” Riley stated.
“Agreed,” Nuf-Pota said.
Riley noticed their mannerisms. They stood in a similar fashion and their names sounded alike.
“You wouldn’t be related, would you?” he asked.
“Yes, we were egg mates,”
“Both in the same egg?” Sasha stepped forward and asked.
“That is correct,” Nuf-Pota said.
“They’re twins?” Sasha asked.
Lokians: Book3 For War and Glory
The hangar housed several vessels of varying sizes and design. Among the crafts were a handful of Grays. They seemed to be searching for something. Their lifeless, black, eyes scanned the white crafts. Along with the small, big-headed aliens, were several dozen large insects.
The insects were a gruesome sight. They possessed six legs, a convex shell, comprised of several brown, chitinous scutes, an elongated head, and odd mandibles. Several metallic hoses and armored plates alluded to the fact that they were Lokians, something like insectoid guard dogs. Saliva dripped from the finger like protuberances lining their jaws.
The Grays shuddered. Something caused them to group together. They had noticed the rampant, uncontrolled minds of the Humans. With a mental command, they sent their Lokian guard bugs to attack the agents.
A sudden gust, a telekinetic blast from a Gray, sent the emerging group reeling.
returned fire, striking one in the face. Its massive head burst and it keeled
“Take out the Grays and-,”
Adams was yelling.
A second wave of energy lifted him off the ground. He attempted to fire his rifle but lacked the proper control over his own body and the laser pulsed a few times, hitting the ground. NOAHH crouched, his back to the opening in the floor, and returned
Adams safely to his feet via his own abilities.
“Sasha, Ivan, climb that craft and take out the Lokians,” Riley barked.
They scrambled up the wings of a small shuttle. Once settled, they aimed at the Lokians. While they were not overly difficult to hit, they were quick and single-minded. The guard bugs charged. One leapt into Ivan, who braced himself firmly. Lokian mass knocked him off the wing. From his back, he followed up with concentrated blasts from Lydumilla. It sheared the bug in half and it split. A viscous, rusty colored, bile, spilled from the alien onto Ivan.
shyol ‘na hui! Alien scum,” Ivan muttered.
During the commotion, the Grays wasted little time in utilizing their telekinetic prowess. They counter attacked by flinging heavy objects across the room or removing the cover from where the ground team hid. Sasha tried her best to single out the Grays and take them down but her aim was lacking. Too often her pulse rifle shot lasers at the surrounding crafts instead.
“Take cover behind the shuttle then fire,” Riley ordered.
He ran from one large ship to a smaller one, shooting, glancing, and shouting orders as he did so. A violent burst of unseen energy flung him up and away into the rafters. He smashed hard into the wooden frame before falling nearly twenty feet back to the ground.
NOAHH took a running start. With optics and scanners locked onto the alien threat, he wielded mental attacks to force several Grays into each other. He then snatched one of the guard bugs, a creature who stood well over four feet in height and nearly twice as long, in his arms and ripped it to pieces.
“Riley?” Sasha called out.
She tried to run to his aid but was cornered by two Lokians. A sound like many slurping tongues escaped their vicious mandibles. Frightened, she took a knee to steady her aim and fired at one. It’s head burst open before the second one bowled her over.
Adams fired at her assailant from the wing of a
“Don’t worry about him,” he said. “He’s had worse.”
as an after thought to himself.
It was true. Riley had had much worse. He forced himself to his feet and fired at a Gray. The pulse rifle let loose a quick flurry of red flashes and three holes appeared in the Gray’s abdomen. It took a few steps forward before falling to the ground, dead.
The remaining few Grays, and half dozen Lokians, continued giving chase. Objects flew about the room but the Humans held strong. Red lasers flashed here and there. In an attempt to create better fighting conditions, NOAHH jumped to the center of the hangar, threw his arms out to the sides and shoved everything near the walls with his mind.
While the act caused those behind cover to falter briefly, it also left the Grays and Lokians wide open, as well as revealed a new enemy. None of them had noticed the seven-foot tall robot until then. The machine possessed large, round shoulders, long arms with four fingers, massive legs for stability, a gorgeous white and blue paint job, and a Gray’s head inside a glass-like casing.
The machine held out its left hand. A turbine mounted around the wrist whined as it spun. Several yellow flashes erupted from the wrist-mounted gun. The machine took menacing steps as it honed in on the ground team. The pulsing photon blasts destroyed steel, tool racks, damaged some smaller crafts, and nearly tore the hangar asunder. Ivan was the first to take several blasts. His armor withstood a great deal of the impact but the heat started to cook his skin.
“B’lyad,” He cried out before taking cover.
He turned tail and ran as the yellow flashes struck him the back. A few paces and he dove, crashing into tool chests. Before anyone had time to recalculate for the new enemy, a thunderous blow shook the very foundations of the hangar. The war in the sky above gave way to a new danger.
Pieces of friendly and alien steel crashed through the roof and a few, green, beams seared the surroundings. Dust and debris momentarily obscured vision. The enemy robot came to halt as it recalibrated to fire upon the Humans.
NOAHH recovered and locked on to the enemy. He attempted to knock the machine over with his powers but they only forced the alien menace to stumble about. In the meantime, Adams and Franklin concentrated on finishing off the Grays while Sasha climbed the assorted junk to rain laser fire onto the Lokians who gave chase.
“C’mon alien ass holes! Show me what you got,” she taunted as the guard bugs skittered up the debris.
Riley ran a few steps, aimed, and fired into the protective glass, containing the Gray head. After one shot, he ran a few more paces, back against a support beam, aimed and fired again. The alien-alloy frame, holding the glass in place, was rather sturdy, as was the material, which only looked like glass. Oh shit, crossed his mind when he realized his suit had a built in cloaking device.
He ran to cover behind a worktable then flipped a neoprene patch on his wrist. Beneath it, were a few, small, buttons. Riley pressed one and it sent a quick current throughout the metamaterial polymer covering the suit. For the next thirty seconds, all light converged around the suit and he moved unseen.
As he ran circles around the machine, firing a few times. Ivan Kicked a Lokian in the side and knocked it over. A blast from Lyudmila finished it off. He then climbed up to Sasha’s position. The two of them helped
and Franklin finish off the Grays.
All the while, the battle above raged on with the sounds of rocket engines
NOAHH charged at the machine. With a leap covering several feet, he landed before it, swung the top of his forearm at the enemy’s wrist mounted weapon, and beat the robot with his fists. His smaller structure allowed him the mobility to fight at close range effectively. He kicked the machine’s knee joint then a laser struck its rear, Riley’s. The machine swung at NOAHH in an attempt to grasp him but he dodged easily, punched it in the chest, then tried to knock its feet out with a telekinetic blast. Again it wavered but did not fall over.
Grunts and war cries continuously erupted into earpieces while lasers flickered about. During Riley’s, and NOAHH’s, assault, the others finally killed the last Lokian and fired their own rifles at the alien machine. Riley managed a few more shots from close range before his suit returned him to sight. The enemy’s glass casing began to spider web so NOAHH deftly climbed the machine from its side and struck repeatedly with both metal hands.
In response, the machine stumbled as it awkwardly reached over the secure NOAHH. Ivan took aim and held a concentrated blast of red laser at the enemy’s head. After a few seconds, his rifle overheated but the damage had been done. The glass cracked and a bluish liquid spilled onto the ground. The final laser came from
The machine’s head burst open and it fell to its knees.
So I’d like to thank you again for allowing me to show the world what I’ve got and I want to thank Eternal Press for providing me the opportunity to publish these exciting books.