Update on The Pitchfork of Destiny

y648This is more of an update than a true blog post, but it’s been since December, so it seemed like a good time to reconnect with the world.

We’ve been diligently working on edits and revisions to Pitchfork of Destiny which is now The Pitchfork of Destiny (and will have an updated cover). We have the green light for publication and everything is set for an April 5th ebook release. We’ll update everyone when we hear about the paperback.

The best way to ensure we’ll have a paperback early is to tell as many people as you can to pick up A Fairy-tale Ending, preferably by ordering through your local bookstore. If you are in Richmond, VA, Fountain Bookstore carries the novel and can get signed copies for you.

We’re working on a new series right now, with the first novel tentatively entitled The Dark Lord. We’re looking to do what we did with fairy tales to epic fantasy, with a few twists.

Thanks for all the support and feel free to ask any questions with a comment.


Published… but now what?

Jack Heckel’s quest for publication began sometime in 2008, when we first had the idea for our novels. Most of the writing was done in 2009, probably bleeding into the early part of 2010. There were beta readers, feedback sessions, a long weekend of edits at a hotel in Maryland, and still more edits between 2010 and 2012. 2011 and 2012 were filled with rejections. We couldn’t even get out of the slush pile with agents.  Continue reading

We’ve achieved couplet… I mean paperback!

Fairytale EndingA quick note to everyone. Yesterday saw the ebook release of A Fairy-tale Ending, which collects Once Upon a Rhyme and Happily Never After in the same volume. It includes some edits and a new map. If you haven’t read the other books or you want to introduce someone else to the fun of The Charming Tales, start with this one.

We received even more good news when we received a release date for the print version of A Fairy-tale Ending. On October 13, Liz and Will Pickett, Charming, and Gwendolyn will step beyond the electronic world into paperback. It’s a dream come true. Thank you to everyone who bought our books, those who have recommended our books to others, and a special thank you to those of you who posted reviews. More details to come on this book, Pitchfork of Destiny, and possibly a new series starting in 2016.

All the best!

A Fairy-tale Ending

It’s been a long time (last November) since we’ve been able to say a new Jack Heckel book is coming out. However, a new Jack Heckel book is being released this August, only it’s actually two old Jack Heckel books, old meaning 2014. Continue reading

Publicity and the Writer, Pt. 1

Hello? Is there anybody in there? Just nod if you can hear me. Is there anyone at home? – Pink Floyd, Comfortably Numb

Comfortably Numb is a Pink Floyd song from the album The Wall, which somehow seems appropriate because one of the hardest things to do as a writer once you’ve written a book is get through a wall of social media noise and figure out how to get people to read it. In many ways, it’s the biggest challenge facing authors these days, especially indie ones. How can people discover you?

Part of the reason that I’m thinking about this subject is that I (the Harry Heckel half of Jack Heckel) am going to be on a panel at Awesome Con in Washington, DC this weekend. This is amazingly cool, and I owe fellow author Wayland Smith for making it happen.


I’ll be on a panel at 2:15 on Sunday with Wayland Smith and Day al-Mohamed discussing how to build a knowledge base and use it for writing. I’m sure I’ll talk quite a bit about reading fairy tales.

All of this is good, even I daresay, AWESOME, but I should have announced that I was going to be at Awesome Con a month ago on this blog. Opportunity lost. Continue reading

RavenCon 2015


So, I (the Harry Heckel half of Jack Heckel) spent this last weekend at a wonderful sci-fi, fantasy and horror convention. For the last several weeks, I’ve been dealing with allergies and some related medical issues – nothing too serious, but I’ve been exhausted. RavenCon was the best treatment in the world.

The staff was utterly fantastic. They were helpful and understanding and even when something didn’t go right, they fixed it immediately. I was very impressed with the professionalism and common sense.

As for the people I met, I had three panels and a seminar and the audiences were great. I didn’t have the largest turnouts, but the people who did attend asked intriguing questions and I felt a real sense of interest and excitement. I made a few new friends among the writers and other guests, notably KT Pinto, Rob Balder, Chris Jackson and Mike McPhail. I also enjoyed running into Baine Kelly and her family. There were many others and I’m sure I’m missing several people.

In contrast to the New York Comic Con, this was a tiny affair, but it was still enjoyable and had a few advantages. For one thing, I wasn’t as likely to get lost (though I still had to ask for directions once). I was also able to take my family. The fact that it’s in my home town meant that I could sleep in my own bed at night.

I hope this will be a year of many conventions, so we can get the word out about our books and meet the fans. As a bonus to the first five people who comment on this post with the name of any of my panels or my seminar, I’ll send you an ebook of your choice from the first three novels of the Charming Tales (Pitchfork of Destiny is a preorder).

Wishing everyone the best,



Once Upon a Rhyme and Happily Never After eBook sale

Hi everyone,

In order to fill your e-Stockings, Harper Collins has put both Once Upon a Rhyme and Happily Never After on sale until Jan. 5th. Here’s the link below:


Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all!!


The One Person I Wish Would Read My Book (This Week)…

I was spending some time wondering about how I could get more people to know about Once Upon a Rhyme and Happily Never After. I kept thinking if only the right person would read the book and tell the world, then everyone could know that a troll who only eats humans is a true humanitarian and/or debate whether dwarfs or dwarves is the proper pluralization with me.

But, who should it be?

Continue reading

HAPPILY NEVER AFTER: Charming Tales Volume II


Aha! The release date of Volume II of the Charming Tales is here! Follow the link under our books page to get your copy today.  And, if you didn’t get the reference to “Aha!” then you obviously haven’t read Charming Tales Volume I: Once Upon a Rhyme. You can pick that up at the same time and have the whole story of Charming’s ruin and rise or rise and ruin–depending on who you are rooting for.

Jack hopes everyone enjoys the book and wants you to know that he is already hard at work on Volume III.

Happily Never Afteronceuponarhymecover

More on New York Comic Con

Although it was two weekends ago, I feel like I’m still recovering from New York Comic Con. It was fun to be Jack Heckel and get to meet so many fans of fairy tales. I had a number of great talks with fans, mostly involving my giving out free copies of Once Upon a Rhyme (still on sale for 99 cents!). I answered a lot of questions, but the most popular were:

  1. What is Once Upon a Rhyme about?
  2. What age group is it for?
  3. How do I become a writer?

Continue reading