Saturday, November 6, 2010


Hello to all:

As my latest effort has been released as an e-book (a format that I am likely to use for the foreseeable future), I just wanted to let visitors know that Kindle has provided a free download of their kindle software that will allow readers to download kindle format books for their computer. This will provide full Kindle functionality on their computer, including bookmarking and one touch page turning that makes the Kindle such a joy to use.  This free download can be had at the following address:

For fans looking to purchase Closures in Blood, they can do so through the Smashwords website. Be sure to select the mobi version when downloading the novel, so they can enjoy it with the Kindle for PC software.

On other matters, I am hard at work on editing the first novel in my fantasy series: Journey Through the Land of Shades. In addition to this preliminary editorial work, I'm writing the first draft of the fourth novel of this series...Wake of the ShadowCaster. Developing a living map and the cover concept for the first novel of the series has left my plate overflowing, but I've never been as delighted with the creative process as I am with this particular project. I will post more as I delve deeper into this world I've labored so mightily to create.

A few things I have discovered and am enjoying immensely:

Slash's new cd: FNF'NR
Blackmore's Night new cd: AUTUMN SKY
The Robert Jordan Novel: EYE OF THE WORLD

Monday, May 10, 2010

George Straatman to Discuss Closures in Blood on Night Fright

Hello to all...I'm very pleased to announce that I will be the featured guest on Brent Holland's Night Fright, which will air On CKLU fm radio on Wednesday, May 19th from 10:00 p.m. until Midnight. This broadcast can be heard via the internet through the following link.

This will be the third occasion that I've been a guest on Brent's show and I am very grateful for the coverage and encouragement he has given my work over the years. I hope that fans of the series will tune in for a deeper insight into the now-complete world of The Converging.

Monday, March 22, 2010


The graphic above is the front cover image from my forthcoming novel: The Converging: Closures in blood. I would like to begin by thanking Steven Efondo (Sefdesign) for breathing such scintillating life into my vision for the graphic representation of the final novel in this series. Steven’s talents as a graphic designer have helped polish the visual aspect of not only my novels, but my website and road presentation props as well and I thank him for his invaluable contributions to my project. As the appearance of a cover graphic would suggest, the novel is in close proximity to being release-ready. As I have indicated in the forums section of this site, the novel will begin its life as an e-book.

Fans of the series might ask why I’ve elected to go the e-book route and as the query is certainly valid, I will try to provide an answer…As I’m inclined to be frank and candid by nature, my response to this question can only be unequivocally honest. Amberdias publishing is a small regional micro press and when it was first created, everyone involved imaged that our project would garner a certain level of community and fan support in the area where we could realistically expect to operate…Unfortunately, sales of my first two novels have not met these expectations. The reasons behind this lack of acceptance are difficult to pinpoint…those who read the first two installment of the trilogy seemed to enjoy the effort, but enticing readers in the area to pick up the novels and embrace the tales told within has been a challenge to which we have not been equal…The reasons behind this are complicated and elude me, but as the refrain goes…they are what they are and I cannot help but accept them. Bottom line is that writing for public consumption is a marriage of art and business and at this time, it would not be practical to release a paper version of the novel. Will that change in the future…I am always hopeful, but augury is not my area of expertise, so I cannot predict and so I must say that the possibility of a paper version is…remote.

There are other reasons for my decision to go with an e-book format…they involve my strong belief in the environment and the idea that the proliferation of e-book technology is a positive thing for the book industry and the e-book has afforded me an opportunity at world-wide distribution that I may otherwise have never achieved.

Still this most compelling reason I’ve decided to release Closures in Blood as an e-book is this…during the course of the last three years, I have promised fans that Elizabeth and Cynara’s epic horror tale would have a fitting conclusion and by releasing this e-book, I am honoring that promise to the best of my ability. I am particularly pleased by the concluding volume of this trilogy…As the name would imply, the volume provides closure for all of the primary characters in the trilogy…This may well be my final foray into the world of writing for public consumption and though I am sad to see Elizabeth and Cynara’s story come an end, I can bid them a fond farewell knowing that I’m both satisfied and gratified by the way in which I told their story.


Sunday, February 28, 2010

The Rise of the Ebook

The proliferation of the e-reader may be the most profound change to the publishing industry since the advent of the internet...I believe that it is an innovation with virtually no downside and will provide benefits to every aspect of the industry. I think that the environmental impact of this technology should be self-evident and so I won't devote any time to elaboration...Instead, I would like to talk about why I have made the decision to embrace the both a reader and a writer. From a reader's perspective, books are cheaper, readily available and won't require that you have to invest in a bigger house if, like me, you wish to hang on to your books. The devices do have their limitations and are presently not well-suited to manga, and other forms of books with high graphics content, but if you spend most of your reading time with simple text novels, they are ideal. Taking the Amazon Kindle as an example...the device holds up to 1500 novels, can down-load directly to the device and is ergonomically well-designed and portable. For the cynical, I would point out how so many companies are offering their own versions of the technology and how so many publishers have jumped on the bandwagon of making their products available in e-book format as an indicator of how the media giants view the future importance of this evolving technology.

As a writer, the e-book has given me access to markets that my small paper publisher never would have been able to deliver. Smashwords has allowed fledgling authors the opportunity to deliver their works to markets that were essentially closed just a few years ago. Thanks to this indie publisher, I can now sell my works on Amazon, the Sony reader store and Barnes and Noble and have been able to do so while preserving the artistic integrity of the story I wished to tell. What's more, I have been able to achieve this previously unimaginable goal without have to plunge myself into utter penury as the production costs of an e-book are a mere fraction of what the paper sibling would be.

This is why the final segment of my Converging Trilogy will begin its life as an e-book. Closures in Blood should soon be ready for public consumption. I am pleased with the concluding volume, just as I have been with the trilogy as a whole.

As the banner at the top of this post would indicate, The week of March 7th has been designated 'read and e-book week'. I would encourage every reader to spend some time during that week familiarizing themselves with the technology that is now available to deliver e-books. Both the e-book and e-reader are not a passing fad...rather they are a step forward in the advancement of our industry and can a tremendous benefit to both the consumers of the written word and those who weave those words together...take care...and by the way, Cynara and Elizabeth send their regards!

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Summer 2009

Closures in Blood: Hello to all…It’s well past due that I provide readers with an update on the next (and final) segment of the Converging trilogy. Over the last few months, I’ve been working diligently to add luster to the final draft of the novel. Once this has been completed, the novel will go through the long and often painful editorial process and it will be ready for release. When? As predictions are perilous snakes that often have a tendency to bite their masters, I will not hazard an exact guess at this time. Let it suffice to say that the novel will be ready once I am convinced that it can stand as a fitting conclusion to the series.

Each novel has a character and life of its own…with a creative process that is unique to the story being told. The Converging was a comparatively straightforward horror offering and while the characters were complex and challenging, the story itself flowed straight and true like an ancient river. Mark of the Demon was a far more challenging novel to write primarily due to the character evolution of the main antagonist, Cynara Saravic, and the crucial development of her relationship with Elizabeth Simpson. Like a skilled farmer, it was necessary to sow and nurture a host of subtle story elements in order to cultivate a credible ending for the second volume of the trilogy.

If asked to characterize my time spent writing and polishing Closures in Blood, I would say simply that it’s been fun. The characters have been very vocal in speaking to me and telling me precisely what part they would like to play in the unfolding of events and so the words marched across the page in smooth and purposeful fashion.

The Converging trilogy is based on the concept of a variety of diverse forces (some willing, some not) coming together at one critical juncture in the weave of time…with explosive, often lethal impact. This has never been more apparent than it will be in this final volume. Elizabeth Simpson will take center stage in this novel, but what of Cynara Saravic, her tormentor? I can say only this…through the wonders of fiction, is death ever really permanent? Along with a host of familiar characters, the reader will be introduced to a demented televangelist, a persecuted Wiccan priestess, a teenage runaway with an excruciatingly painful past and many other dynamic characters…each with a pivotal role to play in the drawing down of the story. I can promise this…after a wild rollercoaster ride, the Converging series will indeed achieve total closure. The crucial questions will all be answered and the characters who survive will be free to live out the remainder of their lives in peace, quiet and relative obscurity.

Ending this update where it began, I can only say that the novel will be ready when it has been written to the best of my capabilities…having said that, I can tell you this…

When this screen changes from orange to green, Closures in Blood will have arrived.

Saturday, January 9, 2010