All posts by Michael Jan Friedman

The Hammer and the Horn Back in Print!

HammerandHorn cover2Well, this is a moment for me. Pardon me while I absorb it.

Okay, done.

Twenty-eight years and two months ago, I stood there in the science fiction section of a Barnes and Noble bookstore in Forest Hills and beamed at The Hammer and The Horn–all five copies of it. The cover was painted by Rowena Morrill, a most talented and acclaimed artist for whom I have the greatest personal admiration. But it wasn’t quite right. The antagonist on the cover was too small, too apelike, too spectacularly dressed. The hero was smiling when he shouldn’t have been. And there was orange in the background. A ton of orange.

Quite frankly, it bugged me. Not just then, but for the last twenty-eight years.

And it wasn’t until now that Caio Cacau, a crazy-talented Brazilian artist you’re going to be seeing a lot of, has come forth and un-bugged me. The cover he lovingly rendered for this re-release of The Hammer and The Horn is full-on, take-no-prisoners dynamic. The hero doesn’t look like he’s having fun–and why should he? He’s fighting for his life. His adversaries are big and brutish-looking, as they should be. And, perhaps best of all…orange? Not so much. Continue reading

Counting Down to our 2nd Anniversary Part I

2ndBirthdayC8Three years ago, at Shore Leave, my frustration with the changes in traditional publishing finally amounted to something.

Great stories were lying around untold because publishers, pressured by an increasingly treacherous marketplace, were hewing more and more to the “sure” thing, refusing to take a chance anymore on anything even slightly outside the box. At the same time, advances in internet tech were making it possible for writers to publish their own books. For the first time, we could reach the reader without a middle man if we were clever enough. I had been obsessed with the possibilities for some time, and couldn’t stop preaching them to anyone I could buttonhole. Finally Bob Greenberger, who was probably just tired of my chewing his ear off, convened a gaggle of writers on the convention floor. “All right,” he said, “we’re listening.”

And that was the beginning of Crazy 8 Press.

In July of 2011, we launched with our first book, Peter David’s wry and witty The Camelot Papers. A month later, Aaron Rosenberg debuted No Small Bills, the first entry in his quack-a-minute DuckBob Spinowitz series. I followed in November with Fight The Gods, a roller coaster of a contemporary fantasy anchored in Greek mythology. Continue reading

Mike Friedman in York, PA on Saturday

Mike FriedmanFor a long time I’ve been hearing great things about the York Emporium, a 19,000-sq.-ft. repository of pulp magazines, vinyl records, and other fun stuff at 343 West Market Street in downtown York, Pa. — which is why I was happy to accept an invitation to speak at the Emporium’s annual Sci Fi Saturday on June 15th.

The action gets underway at 10 a.m., so plan on walking the dog a little earlier that day. Proprietor Jim Lewin tells me he’ll be airing Resistance, my Voyager first-season episode, which features a brilliant performance by canny veteran actor Joel Grey. And at some point in the afternoon, you might — just might — see me pit my 1970s-vintage Division One fencing technique against a horde of light-saber-swinging Jedi knights.

Unless, of course, I come to my senses.

Mike Friedman Joins the Blog Hop

Aztlan front coverA couple of weeks ago, my pal Ilsa Bick asked me if I wanted to do the Big Blog Hop. What’s a blog hop? I asked. Turns out it’s an elaborate game of tag. Ilsa tags me, I talk about my latest book, then I tag someone else, who talks about theirs. If you’re nice enough to play along, you get to meet one author after the other until you’re dizzy and you throw up.

Or something like that.

Ilsa, by the way, is one of the spookiest writers working today. Her  latest book is The Sin-Eater’s Confession. Get it, read it, tell all your friends how good it is.

But in the meantime, check this out…

1) What is the title of your latest book?

Aztlan: The Maxtla Colhua Mysteries.

2) Where did the idea come from for the book?

I’ve always been interested in the Aztecs, and with the “end” of the Mesoamerican calendar looming, I wanted to do something alternate-history-ish with it. On the other hand, I wanted it to be different — and what’s more different from your normal alternate history than a noire murder mystery? Continue reading

Aztlan Omnibus Due in February

Aztlan front coverOkay. We promised you a paperback edition that brings together the novellas Aztlan: The Last Sun and Aztlan: The Courts of Heaven, and we’re delivering on that promise. In three to four weeks, depending on the whims of the publishing gods, you’ll be able to access Amazon and order Aztlan, a novel-sized work that presents the complete (well, for now) adventures of 21st-century Aztec gumshoe Maxtla Colhua.

Maxtla is an Investigator for the Empire–an Aztec Empire that, having successfully repelled Hernan Cortes 400 years earlier, stretches from one end of what we know as the Americas to the other. If you love alternate histories, if you love murder mysteries, or if you just love reading something off the beaten track…you’ll want to give Aztlan a try.

And of course, Aztlan: The Last Sun and Aztlan: The Courts of Heaven remain available as separate e-books from Crazy 8 Press. So there you go–your options are wide open.  Buy. Read. Enjoy.

Aztlan: The Courts of Heaven to be Released in November

Back in March, we at Crazy 8 Press released Aztlan: The Last Sun, which followed the adventures of 21st-century Aztec gumshoe Maxtla Colhua as he tracked vicious serial killer who was cutting people’s hearts out on the eve of The Last Sun. Because you asked for it, we’ll be releasing the exciting sequel in November 2012.

In Aztlan: The Courts of Heaven, Maxtla Colhua is back, except this time he’s looking for the missing star of a brutal Aztec ball game–preferably before the guy’s fans make the streets of his city run red with blood. In the process, Maxtla realizes he’s pitting himself against a lot more than just a kidnapper. He’s going up against the very–

Hey, that would be telling.

Like its predecessor, Aztlan: The Courts of Heaven will be an e-novella available on Kindle as well as Nook. And soon afterward, it’ll come out in paperback as well.

Keep checking in with us here at for further news.