Now for some exciting news. Pill Hill Press has announced the winners of the Editors Choice awards for the best stories to appear in its new anthology, “Conquest Through Determination, Steampunk, in All Its Splendour.” Editor Deana Roberts chose my short story, “Undead Empire, Gog!” as her selection for the award, which includes a $100 cash prize.

Editor Miles Boothe selected “Tragedy of Harlan Ruby and Elvira Mynx,” by Katherine Simmons as his choice to win a second $100 prize. All the contributors to the anthology voted for “Fateful Days,” by J.J. Hill, as their favorite to win a $50 cash prize.

“Undead Empire, Gog!” is another Mordecai Slate story. In this one, Slate teams up with a mad scientist from England, who has a time machine that takes Slate far into the future to a world run by a face-changing demon with an army of zombies. In this one I raised the stakes about a high as you can go. Mordecai and Professor Winston Sillitoe must stop the mad plan of a demon intent on destroying this world and taking over the next!

It’s my first attempt to write a story in the steampunk sub-genre. I personally have had very little exposure to steampunk and had to do some research on it before I could even begin writing. I found it a far more of a technical challenge than the weird westerns, or space opera or sword and sorcery I usually write. You have to be aware of the historical period, and the kinds of things that were possible from a science fiction point of view. And in this case, I had to work Slate, a bounty killer from 1880s Colorado into this bizarre futuristic setting. Somehow, I guess it worked!

It’s celebration time!

The book is already available from