The Thirteenth Hour Podcast #59: The Thirteenth Hour Soundtrack Preview

Episode #59: Long Ago Not So Far Away: Music from The Thirteenth Hour (Preview)

This week, it’s all about retro 80s, starting with a preview of the upcoming official soundtrack release for The Thirteenth Hour, entitled Long Ago Not So Far Away.

It ended up being about 47 minutes long with a combination of synth instrumental tracks and songs with lyrics played on the guitar, piano, or a both.  Some were songs that I came up with originally when I wrote the book, others were ones that I wrote a few years later but had not fully completed (i.e. had the lyrics and chords for the guitar, making for a skeleton of a song … but all the little riffs and fills that make a song a song, especially a retro style 80s song, weren’t there).  There were two I kept more bare bones (mostly just acoustic guitar with a minimum of electric effects or synthesizers) because I wanted them to sound like folk songs out of the pseud0-medieval world the novel is set in.

It really ended up being a lot of fun.  In contrast to the tortuous process I had creating the cover for the book version of The Thirteenth Hour, making the cover for Long Ago Not So Far Away felt like a breeze, since I decided that the best course of action was to make it look like something out of the 80s.  I have a healthy collection of 80s CDs, tapes, and movies that helped provide entertaining inspiration.  There were also tons of synthwave (neo 80s synth music) covers on the internet (some of which looked more 80s than actual 80s album covers!). I also found this great Instagram page by @synthenebrism which links to a Spotify page with hours upon hours of synthwave music for your listening enjoyment.

In terms of making the cover itself, I found this great step by step tutorial that captured the look I was going for almost perfectly.  It walks you through using Photoshop to create your own retro synth cover.  I wanted an aurora for the cover to fit with the content of the book, so after a bit of searching, found this free stock image (click on the image to go to the page):


Thanks to Blackmoons32 on deviantart for making a great free lightning bolt stock image already with an alpha channel (meaning the background is already transparent), making it easy to paste into your picture.  I thought about adding a rainbow or a unicorn to really round out the 80s fantasy images but thought that might be laying it on a little thick.  Instead, I just added the pixelart Logan on Lightning I made for the vaporware Thirteenth Hour game I started years ago.  In the end, it ended up looking like this:

cover 80s style_edited-33.jpg

It should be out later this fall.  But if you’d like a free advance preview, there are a few ways to do it.  Check out the bandcamp page, which has many of the tracks already uploaded, though not the fully remastered ones.  You can also look for former entries of this podcast or the Instagram page for some live versions or early drafts of songs.  Lastly, if you haven’t already, sign up for the mailing list if you’d like a free digital copy of the album to download with album artwork and all.  Stay tuned!

As always, thanks for listening!


  • QR code email signup Signup for the mailing list for a free special edition podcast and a demo copy of The Thirteenth Hour!
  • Follow The Thirteenth Hour’s instagram pages: @the13thhr and@the13thhr.ost for your daily weekday dose of ninjas, martial arts bits, archery, flips, breakdancing action figures, fantasy art, 80s music, movies, and occasional pictures or songs from The Thirteenth Hour books.
  • Free online streaming of the growing Thirteenth Hour soundtrack:  Stay tuned to a full 45+ min album coming in the next few weeks!
  • Website:
  • Book trailer:
  • Interested in reading and reviewing The Thirteenth Hour for a free book?  Just email me at for more details!

The Thirteenth Hour Podcast #21: Special Edition

Episode #21: Special Edition for the Third Edition Launch

Today is another special edition of this podcast, discussing the upcoming launch of the 3rd edition of The Thirteenth Hour (special editions are longer – this one is 30 minutes – and less frequent; the other special edition is the episode on A Shadow in the Moonlight for subscribers of the mailing list – see link below for free access).

The following links are referenced in the episode.  i.e.:

-Talking about how the book came to be in print (unofficially) as early as 1998:

-Illustration updates to this newest edition:

Like the above link, here are a similar progression of images showing the creation of an image (this time of King Darian) from sketch to computer edited image:

darian 1darian 2darian 3darian meme

-The saga of cover creation:

-And what you can do to personally support the launch:

-Other ways to get a sample of the book and see if the writing style is to your taste:

->download a sample on amazon

->download a free copy of the prequel, A Shadow in the Moonlight, on Smashwords or Amazon

->download a free copy of the standalone short story, “Falling Leaves Don’t Weep” (may contain vague, obtuse spoilers) on Smashwords

->email me for a sample chapter @

->email me @ if you’d like to review the book – you get a gift copy for free.

->download the first 15 episodes of this podcast on itunes (granted, an earlier draft of the book, but it’s all there, start to finish).

So, lots of ways!  Best wishes for the new year!

As always, thanks for listening!


thunderclap 13th hr picture_edited-1


The Thirteenth Hour is Getting Patched!

After a long week of editing, I’m relieved and proud to say that the second edition of The Thirteenth Hour should be live in the next few days.  Naturally, after I had finished the first edition, I ended up going through and finding a number of areas that I wanted to change.  I also wanted to incorporate some suggestions I’d received from people who were kind enough to read the book early on.

While important, most were not very interesting to write about at length (unless you like formatting and editing documents) – some areas where the spacing wasn’t quite right, a few areas with missing words, some sections that needed to be edited for brevity and/or internal consistency, and a bunch of grammatical corrections to make sure tense, number, and punctuation were as correct as I could get them.  I ended up doing two simultaneous edits – one for Kindle and another for the printed Createspace edition, which had different formatting.

It was a very tedious process, but I did learn something that will be helpful in the future. I discovered that I can’t catch little mistakes like this on a computer screen.  Despite trying to train myself to do more and more on a computer screen in order to save some trees, there’s nothing like paper.  So, I sacrificed one of my printed books to mark up.  There seems to be something about old fashioned paper and red marker that really brings out the crud (even more so than reading out loud, a previous editing trick I tried).  I guess I’m old school in that way.

I did a few tweaks to the pictures as well, including drawing two new pictures to the previously blank “Part 1” and “Part 2” pages of the first edition, like this one of Logan zooming up, up, and away on his flying hoverboard, Lightning.

logan lightning part2 pic

There was a picture I omitted from the first edition because something about it didn’t quite look right.  Like the picture above, I was aiming for a silhouette, like an old woodcut or illustration you might see in a children’s book from the 1950s.  It was of the two main characters, Aurora and Logan, and Aurora is kissing Logan goodbye as he leaves the orphanage they grew up in for the Army.  In this part of the book, Logan hasn’t quite hit his last growth spurt yet and is still shorter than Aurora.  He ends up growing a lot over the next year and a half, but in the original drawing (c. 1998, on the left below), I always thought I drew him too small to be believable given his age, and he seems a little too stiff, like he’s on trial or something.  So for the updated 2015 version (on the right), I made him a bit taller, but more slouched and ganglier, less confident.  He’s the same guy who later becomes the daring flying man in the picture above, so he eventually fills out in body and spirit, but at this point in the story, he’s still more boy and man, which is what I was trying to convey all along.

Angels voices part 1 picture comparisonSo this was the fun part of editing.  Hopefully, people who purchased the original on Kindle will be able to re-sync their devices and get the new updates, just like a software patch for a game.  I’m still learning how Amazon does this myself, but they discuss it on their Kindle publishing page.  I’ll be looking forward to seeing them in person myself!


The Thirteenth Hour Kindle Edition 60% Off Sale – This Week!

Get The Thirteenth Hour for the Kindle this week for $1.99, as opposed to its usual $4.99 price!

That’s a discount of 60%!

Want to try before you buy?  Check out the links below for excerpts and other free stuff.

Here’s the link to

logan and aurora castle grounds moonWM


One sentence summary: a nontraditional faerie tale for adults about a young man and his childhood friend who journey to the ends of the Earth to find the secret of eternal life for a narcissistic King, learning a little about living, loving, dying, and dreaming in the process.

You might like this book if you enjoy … 

  • 1980s fantasy and scifi films
  • books like The Neverending Story by Michael Ende or Stardust by Neil Gaiman
  • adventures with unassuming, introspective protagonists
  • coming of age stories
  • irreverent (probably politically incorrect) humor
  • fantasy art
  • martial arts
  • gymnastics/acrobatics
  • archery
  • throwing cards
  • skipping stones
  • contemplating the nature of human existence
  • backflipping chimpanzees (yes, there is one)


The Thirteenth Hour Is Out! Available for Kindle and in Print!


At long last, the wait is over, and The Thirteenth Hour is out!

This is a story for everyone who has been told to get their head out of the clouds and stop daydreaming.

When a young boy falls asleep during school one day, he is transported to another world, where he witnesses the tale of Logan, a young man, and Aurora, his childhood friend, as they journey to the four corners of the Earth and encounter many exotic creatures, situations, and perils in a quest to find the secret to eternal life for a self-centered ruler.

Part adventure story, part travelogue, and part introspective narrative detailing the struggles we all face when becoming adults, The Thirteenth Hour contains over 35 illustrations, music written specifically for the story, and a rich world both on and off-line that was sixteen years in the making.

Open it today, and let the story of The Thirteenth Hour become your story!




Book Trailer

Free itunes podcast of the book read by the author


Purchase The Thirteenth Hour for Kindle on Amazon

Just available!  Now you can purchase The Thirteenth Hour in print via Createspace (available even before it comes online on Amazon!)


Read free excerpts at and the book’s amazon site.

Reading Books on the Kindle

The Thirteenth Hour is currently only available for the Kindle (this may change in the future), but if you don’t have a Kindle, what to do?  Below are a number of options – all are free assuming you have another device that can read ebooks.

1.) You can read it on a PC with free Kindle software.

2.) You can read it using the apps for iOS (iphone, ipad) or Android.

3.) If you had a Nook (the ereader from Barnes and Noble) in the past, you may have found that Kindle books were not compatible.  There are some ways around that.  However, see this article – you may be able to just install the Android Kindle app now.

4.) Failing all these, just wait for The Thirteenth Hour to be available as a physical book, thanks to an Amazon company, Createspace, which allows ebooks to be turned into physical books via print on demand publishing.  Stay tuned!





-Book Trailer:

-Free itunes podcast of the book:

-Read free excerpts at and the book’s amazon site.