Since I’m Such A Nice Guy…

Hey, One Million Moms!  Since you like to ban things I figured I’d drop the price on Arise so you can get a copy to delete for less money.  That’s right, Arise is only 99¢ today!  For those of you who just like to read books, boy have I got a story for you!  Gods, guns, guts, glory; this book has it all!

Steven was having a pretty good time for a guy who helped release a captured god. He had a nice place in Colorado, a pretty girl sent him a picture of herself in a bikini, and he had neighbors that left him alone. Everything was looking pretty good until he woke up to find two people in his house that were planning on killing him; one was an old coworker and the other was an old boss.

It seems that releasing the God of Dreams was caused some ripples in places best left alone and Eve’s atonement was to kill Steven for his part in the transgression. Wilford wanted to kill Steven because that’s just how Wilford is. They all soon find themselves trapped between a runaway God of Dreams bent on expanding his domain and the personification of Fear. If one doesn’t get them, the other will.

The only solution is to get the gang back together again and find something that can stop at least one, but preferably both gods before the world comes crashing down around them. They’ve got more help this time, though; Wilford is tentatively on their side and a mysterious Native American gentleman has offered some assistance, but just how trustworthy the new allies are remains to be seen.

There’s also one more wrinkle for Steven to sort out: The God of Dreams wants his girl.

From a shootout in Tijuana to a strange base in Dulce, New Mexico, Steven has his hands full just trying to stay ahead of the god that wants him dead, the girl he’s finding himself more and more smitten with, and new allies that may or may not be up to any good.

Some days it’s hard to be one of the henchmen.

Get it Here

Cover design © 2015, Eric Lahti.  Background Stock Photo by Pixattitude. ID 30553123 © Pixattitude |

Cover design © 2015, Eric Lahti. Background Stock Photo by Pixattitude. ID 30553123 © Pixattitude |

Monsters of the Southwest – The Dulce Base

Okay, it could be argued that this is really an extension of my post about the Greys since the rumors about Dulce center around rumors about the Greys but it makes for an interesting story in and of itself so bear with me on this one.  We’re about to cross through the looking glass folks.

UFOs use unleaded.  I'm not supposed to tell you that, but there you go.

UFOs use unleaded. I’m not supposed to tell you that, but there you go.

Back in 1979 an Albuquerque man by the name of Paul Bennewitz was a part-time UFO investigator, full time business owner.  He and another investigator by the name of Leo Sparkle were doing hypnotic regression on a woman named Myrna Hansen.  Since those crafty aliens are so good at hiding their tracks hypnotic regression was, and laregely still is, the number one way to prove alien abduction.  Under hypnosis Myrna revealed she had been witnessed cattle mutilations (those still happen around here from time to time) and was taken to a secret underground base.  Bennewitz thought there might a link between Myrna’s story and the strange lights around the Manzano Nuclear Weapons Storage Facility (which, by the way, is nowhere near Dulce).

Paul Bennewitz ultimately built a device to decode alien transmissions and those transmissions led him to discover a secret underground base shared by aliens and government agents.  That base, he determined, was located near Dulce, NM in the Archuleta Mesa.  This was an odd enough situation but got even stranger when a man name Phillip Schneider came forward claiming to have worked as a contractor at the base.  During an expansion Schneider and his team accidentally opened a hole to cavern where the Greys had their own secret base.  This sparked a conflict between the human and alien operators that nearly devolved into a full-blown war before it was contained.

Schneider was later found strangled with a catheter hose.

Underground tunnels, referenced in Arise

Underground tunnels, referenced in Arise

To make things even more interesting, another man named Tomas Costello – who claimed to have been a security guard at the base – claims to have seen horrific experiments carried out by the Greys on unwilling human subjects.  If the rumor mill is to be believed, the Greys were trying to create human/alien hybrids (see this was around long before the X-Files came along).  The friction between the aliens and the humans over the treatment of human subjects again sparked a conflict before it was contained.

Costello fell off the face of the Earth after telling his tale.

So what’s going on in Dulce now?  Who knows, but I doubt they’re up to much good.

Now, onto how I wove all this into the gripping final sequences of Arise.  Again, this takes a bit of time, so make sure you’ve got a full drink handy.

At the end of World War II, with the Nazis in full-on retreat mode, the Allied powers recognized there was a huge amount of high-tech Nazi equipment lying around and set out to capture as much of it as possible.  The United States, Great Brittain, and the Soviet Union all descended on formerly Nazi controlled areas and sucked up whatever the could find.  Among other things, the Allies captured Nazi scientists and kidnapped them (they were Nazis, don’t feel too sorry for them).  Under Operation Paperclip almost 1500 Nazi scientists were extracted to the US to not only expand American technology but deny that information to the Soviets and Great Brittain.  The Soviets also captured a huge amount of Nazis to help with their own technological growth spurt.

Among other things reported to have been captured was a strange machine known as Die Glocke (the bell), something that could apparently do all sorts of thing that weren’t good.  The Bell was a wunderwaffe, something that was intended to single-handedly win the war for Hitler; a thing that might even be able to control a god (that’s my take on it, anyway).

Yep, it's a bell

Yep, it’s a bell

Ostensibly, all the captured scientists were engineers, technicians, and the like, but the Nazis were also experts at biological and chemical warfare and had their own long history of experimenting on unwilling subjects.  Again, if you follow the rumor mill, it’s not too hard a leap to make to wonder if some of those guys came back, too.  The United States was technically harboring war criminals so adding a few more to the mix wouldn’t have been too big a deal.  The Nazis also had a large occult group running around, some of whom would have undoubtedly fallen under US control.

Alien/human hybrids

Alien/human hybrids

Take all those things and add in the rumors of Dulce and you’ve got a recipe for good action.  It’s not much of a leap to think those same Nazis could easily have wound up at Dulce, with or without alien assistance.  Now, the Nazis were viscious bastards, but they were smart and tenacious viscious bastards who would have looked at alien/human hybrid experimentation as a perfect chance to continue their work on the master race.

Hence the apes in Arise; strong, easily controlled, not very smart, but paired with a genetically enhanced superman they would make an impressive army for a group that would have grown used to working in the shadows.  Over time they would have created something terrible; only the fickle caresses of fate stopped their plans.

Of course, there was at least one perfect man left at the end of the story…

More info about Dulce

Wiki on Dulce


Okay, so it should probably be titled re-re-re-re-redesign, at least in the case of Henchmen, but I decided to redo the covers for both Henchmen and Arise.  I liked the old covers, but they weren’t really catching anyone’s eye and didn’t really give you much of an indication of what the books were actually like.  So, with the help of the fine folks in the Indie Review Exchange Group on Facebook, I rebuilt both covers.  They’re not updated on Amazon yet, but I’ll get them up there pretty soon.

So, without further ado, enjoy some redesigns.

Cover design © 2015, Eric Lahti.  Background Stock Photo by Pixattitude. ID 30553123 © Pixattitude |

Cover design © 2015, Eric Lahti. Background Stock Photo by Pixattitude. ID 30553123 © Pixattitude |

© 2015, Eric Lahti Background image: ID 30553123 © Pixattitude |

© 2015, Eric Lahti
Background image: ID 30553123 © Pixattitude |


Strangely, I’ve never been a huge fan of horror stories.  Some are good, some are bad, but it’s never been a genre that I went out of my way to read.  Of course, I’ve read a lot of Stephen King’s works and found his stories to be entertaining and well read.  It is a great book and I loved The Stand.  Thing is, though, while they were all good books I didn’t find any of them particularly scary.  I mean scary in the way that tingles run up and down your spine for hours after you’ve read them.

I’d like to say I’m immune to being scared but Poltergeist still freaks me out lo these many years later.  When I first saw it I was nervous for weeks and I still have a thing about clowns.  But, let’s be frank here, clowns are kind of freaky as Too Much Joy taught us back in the 90s.

Sleep well tonight.

Sleep well tonight.

Aside from Poltergeist and a handful of other movies, I just don’t find a lot of horror movies to be all that horrifying.  Maybe it’s because my mom let me watch Alien when I was 9 and it burned out any fear receptors I might have had.

Why the discussion of horror movies in a post titled Genres?  Well, a funny thing happened on the way to the forum.  I’ve had Henchmen and Arise set up freebies on Amazon over the past couple of days and both of them crawled into the top 10 in Horror:Occult.  I swear, I didn’t set out to write a horror story.  I honestly thought I was writing action/adventure.  So, I stopped and pondered it while I was grilling burgers tonight and wondered how either of those books would be considered horror.  Sure, the government captured a god who could control people with his shadows, there’s a monster guarding a secret installation, one of the protagonists is a Valkyrie, you’ve got guys who can flick in and out of reality, and a guy that just won’t die.

So, okay, there are some elements that you could consider horror-related, and those are just in Henchmen.  Arise ramps it up a bit further.  Still, it never dawned on me that I was writing a horror story.  I started out writing a story about a supervillain (Eve) and her henchmen (the rest of the folks).  I wanted to ground them a bit more in reality rather than having people running around in tights.  Once I placed a Valkyrie on the page, the rest just kind of flowed into place.

I’m going to digress for a moment, but I’ll do my best to wrap it all back together again shortly.

One of the earlier horror stories I read was Lovecraft’s The Statement of Randolph Carter.  It’s one of the few Lovecraft stories that has stuck with me over the years.  The story is pretty short and straightforward and recounts the death of Harley Warren.  In the story, Warren and Carter find a temple in the middle of a swamp and crack it open.  Inside they find a set of stairs descending into darkness.  For some reason Warren – armed only with a lantern and a length of telephone wire – decides to see where the stair go.

Climbing down the stair of a mysterious temple armed with a flashlight is the literary equivalent of this cartoon:


In case you hadn’t guessed Warren finds a mysterious underworld filled with horrible marvels and meets his untimely demise at the hands of something really bad.

I always thought that it would be interesting to see what would happen if someone faced down the nameless horrors that twist reality and was actually somewhat prepared for it.  It covered this to a certain degree; but what if the horrors met a horror of their own.  That seemed to me to a pretty good idea.  Thus was born the action and the horror of Henchmen and Arise.  Start out with the idea that there are monsters out there and put together some characters that can face them down, mix in a bit of gun play, and shake gently.

So, there you go.  Accidental genre-bending fiction.  Or is it genre-defying fiction?

And a quick “Thank you” to everyone who has downloaded Henchmen and Arise.  I hope you enjoy(ed) them.

May cause unexpected awesomeness in readers

May cause unexpected awesomeness in readers

Has been known to grant readers nearly godlike powers (6)

Has been known to grant readers nearly godlike powers (6)

Sorry, Dr. Spengler

In 1984 an emboldened Dr. Egon Spengler proudly declared print was dead.  The movie, of course, was Ghostbusters and I was thirteen.  I loved every second of that movie and went on to watch it a couple more times in the theater.  Times being what they were, I didn’t see it again until it aired on TV many years later.

Still loved it.

Who da man?  You da man!

Who da man? You da man!

For the most part, Spengler was the man.  Stantz and Venkmen got all the credit, but it Spengler who did the real work.  He and Zeddmore were the unsung heroes of the movie.  Remember that, and then forget you ever heard it.

Still, it was a bit premature for Spengler to declare print dead.  After all, computers at the time were clunky, cantankerous beasts.  I know, I started programming them right around the time Ghostbusters came out.  It was all one cryptic command after another and I soaked them up, which may explain why I’m kind of hard to communicate with.  Even now, with the rise of ebooks and readers, it’s difficult to declare print well and truly dead.  As I pointed out in a previous blog entry, the print on demand services have finally realized Gutenberg’s goal of easy and cheap printing.  Throw some data in one end and pop! out comes a book from the other.

Books have some advantages that tablets and eReaders lack, too.  Sure, sure; you can put like, a gagillion books on an eReader and they’re easy to read, easy to find, and easy to buy.  But take this scenario into account:

There you are, lying in bed, reading the latest Bigfoot Erotica or staring at pictures of bunnies with pancakes on their heads and you notice something small and black crawling on your bed mate.  Whatever it is, it has far too many legs and its beady little eyes are shining in the soft light.  This being the Southwest, you immediately recognize the hateful gaze of the wily(1) – and deadly(2) – Black Widow Spider, the scourge of the Southwestern United States(3).


Whoops.  Wrong one.  This is the beast:

Stealing your soul through this very picture.

Stealing your soul through this very picture.

Keep your wits about you, lest the foul beast suck the very soul from your bed mate!(4)  Look around and find what you have at hand: a pillow, your trusty Nexus 7 tablet, and your fists.

The pillow won’t cut it; it’s far too fluffy to take out the beast with many legs.  Your fists won’t work because the demon will sink its fangs into your hand and the last thing you’ll notice before you die is a sudden craving for human brains!(5).  This leaves your Nexus 7 tablet.  There are two problems with smacking a black widow with your tablet: You may kill the beast, but you’ll hurt your bed mate because tablets have sharp edges.  The other problem is you’ll likely break your tablet that’s loaded with Bigfoot Erotica and then where will you be?  SOL, that’s where.

Don’t fret, though!  I’ve totally got your back here.  With a little help from my buds at Amazon, I’ve cut a deal whereby you can buy physical copies of Henchmen or Arise and get their digital versions absolutely free!  That’s right!  FREE!  These are friend prices, you understand.



So, next time you find one of the blasphemous little devils crawling on your bed mate, reach for a copy of either book and send that eight-legged demon back to Hell.  Each book is printed with special ink on the covers that will allow you – yes, you! – to smack the living snot out Black Widow spiders and just wipe their hated remains off with a tissue.

BAM!  No fuss, no muss.  That’s how much I care for you.(6)

How many other books do you know of that double as stories hailed as “the greatest ever told”(7) and spider killers?  None that I’m aware of.(8)

What are you waiting for?  It’s time to LIVE!

Would you like to know what else you can do with a print book that you can’t do with an eBook?  Look awesome.  Unless you’re reading Bigfoot erotica, there’s no better way to meet new friends than by reading an awesome book in public.  Especially if it’s one no one’s ever heard of, like one of mine.  So, buy several copies, go forth, and look awesome!



So, sorry Dr. Spengler.  It would appear print is very much alive and well.


(1) They’re not really terribly wily.  Black Widows are actually pretty shy critters

(2) Sometimes, not often.  Most bites are dry bites.

(3) I think Taco Bell is actually the scourge of the Southwest, but that’s just my opinion

(4) Black widows don’t actually steal souls.  They have been known to borrow them, though.

(5) The link between Black Widows and Chronic Zombieitis is tenuous at best

(6) And dislike Black Widows.

(7) I said that, but you can totally trust my unbiased opinion

(8) Try it with War and Peace or The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich; you’ll break your bed mate’s bones.

Allow me to tell you a story

Sit right back and allow your crazy uncle Eric to tell you tale.  It’s a tale woven of gods and monsters, Nazis and beasts, good guys who aren’t so good and bad guys who are really really bad.

You see, last year a group of people decided it would be a good idea to kill everyone in the United States Congress.  Naturally, this is a difficult proposition.  Their reasons for wanting to do this were varied but usually came down to, “I’m not happy with things the way are.”  In this way, the story parallels the real world.  The difference is, in the story, the characters actually manage to do it.  They cheat of course, but they manage to do it.

The story is Henchmen, that action-packed tale about revenge gone overboard.  But Henchmen was only part of the story.  Thing is, if there’s one god floating around, there’s bound to be others, too.  And maybe those other gods are less than thrilled that the first god was released.  Gods, after all, are not big on competition.

So that’s where Arise begins, with Eve promising to kill Steven for his part in releasing the God of Dreams.  Naturally, she doesn’t kill him and they pull everyone back together to stop the thing they released from taking over the world.

I won’t promise you “Citizen Kane,” but I will promise you action, adventure, a smidgen of romance, and some damned funny jokes.

After the Dreamer tore through the United States Congress the world didn’t stop spinning. The sun still shone, gravity still worked, and the country kept on going.

Releasing the God of Dreams, though, caused ripples in places that should never ripple and soon Steven, Eve, and the rest of the gang find themselves stuck between a terrifying god that wants them dead and a God of Dreams bent on expanding his domain. They’ll need all the help they can get to make it through, even if comes in the form of a man that Steven has personally shot twice, but who refuses to stay dead. Throw in the girl he can’t strop dreaming about, a mysterious site in Dulce, NM, and a group indestructible minions and Steven soon finds he’s got his hands far more full than he ever wanted.

Blood will spill. A god will fall. And a hero will arise.

Buy it now.  Only $2.99 on Amazon

Arise Cover.  © 2014, Eric Lahti

Arise Cover. © 2014, Eric Lahti


The sequel to Henchmen will be called Arise rather than Henchmen: Arise.  The compound title just didn’t work for me.  That story is done, edited, changed, edited, modified, edited, and pretty much ready to go.  I’ve got one guy still doing a beta read and I’d like his input before I publish, so I’m holding off for the time being.  I’m pleased with the way it turned out, but knowing me I’ll make another pass or two through it before I publish.

After I was mostly done with Arise I looked back through Henchmen, looking for some bit of trivia I had forgotten and was thoroughly disgusted at what  I found.  There are some good moments in that novel, but damn, the intro sucks ass.  So, since Arise is coming out I decided to do some clean up on Henchmen.

I’ve been doing clean up for nearly a month now.  It’s got a whole new first chapter, huge parts of the second and third chapters have been stripped out or rewritten (or both).  I hadn’t really doubted it, but some of the criticisms I got were spot on: takes to long to get started and is very ambiguous about the formation of the group.  It starts with more of a bang now, there’s more interaction between the characters, less exposition, and generally more reasons why things are happening.

I’m tentatively targeting late November for re release of Henchmen and release of Arise.