I know it's been a while since I updated the blog so I'm going to get in what I can while I type. I've been hard at work on book three and it is headed to the Amazon store immanently. This is the third and final book for this series, but there may be another in the same universe on the horizon.

I'm toying with a lot of other ideas as I go into the Fall including a screenplay and a graphic novel. I am taking this time to explore creative possibilities as well as look for a day job. (Long story short: Full time writing wasn't for me but I still like writing.)

In honor of the third book I've worked with the incredible Inkspiral Design to re-design the covers and give the books a little more genre specific branding. The books aren't about just one character-- they are about diverse, damaged people coming together to fight against tyranny, oppression and the darker side of themselves.

01_QueenofLiesI've learned a lot about my craft working through these books. When I wrote The Queen of Lies I wanted to tell a intricate story that defied the common tropes in writing. It was ambitious for a first novel... and based on the reviews, it worked. I'm glad I kept the stories self-contained because I don't think I could keep up with a saga that sprawled over multiple books (G.R.R. Martin is apparently struggling with this)


02_TheMIrroredCityAfter I quit my day job I started on the Mirrored City. This book was a departure from the first: it was much darker and the cast nearly doubled. It's a little overwhelming in the beginning but for readers who stuck it out to the end were delighted. Sales were weak and reviews were not as strong. At the time I had broken my knee and fell into a depression. I did very little to promote it because of general disillusionment and also because I wanted a third book before I invested in marketing.


The Blade of Betrayal, like the Queen of Lies began its existence as another book entirely first (The Lord of Storms). 60k words into the book I scrapped it entirely. LoS was out there-- time travel, alternate realities... I ultimately had to scrap it totally. The next draft was my first time using an outline. I kept the writing brief and the stories simpler. I couldn't be more pleased with how the character arcs mirrored and intertwined each other almost seamlessly. From now on, no more writing by the seat of my pants.

Which brings me to my first Trilogy complete. So, most likely before Halloween I will have four books in the Amazon store.

box set



The Mirrored City CloseupInline

The final chapter of the book is finished and... I have to say not even I was expecting it. It's one of the best feelings as a writer when your characters write the story for you. It's even more of a joy when they surprise the hell out of you with their deviousness. Sometimes you need to let a story sit for a while. It can feel like procrastination and you may find yourself laying for hours at a time on your couch as you burn through all four seasons of Spartacus. (BTW... do not try to write dialogue after watching that show for ten hours. The idioms are infectious.)

I'm really excited about the new story and even more pleased with how quickly its come together in spite of vast stretches of non-productivity. This book was a struggle at points but I think it provides a unique experience while maintaining the integrity of the characters as they rise to meet their destiny. The stakes are much higher in this book and we see them raised even higher for the next.

The front cover artwork is done and I'm in negotiations with an editor to get the product ready to market in October. Pre-Orders for the ebook should be open at the end of July.

Thanks so much to Matt at Inkspiral design for working so quickly to get this completed.


Mike bode is the author of The Queen of Lies, the first installment in the ongoing series, Architects of the Grand Design. His next book comes out September. Sign up for the mailing list for more info.

Mirrored Comp

BEHOLD! The mockup cover for my forthcoming book. I assembled it myself in GIMP one drunken evening. I don't think I did too badly, not having done graphic design in ten years. It currently has three stars on Rate My Kindle Cover, which does not completely suck. Don't worry I will hire a pro.

I am currently 88,162 98,420 words into book #2, a sequel to the Queen of Lies. That's just a few chapters to go. Wow.

I have set up a kickstarter for the project, mostly just to see what happens. Check it out if you're so inclined.

So far, for those who can't wait till the next installment, here's a taste:

The story takes place a year after The Queen of Lies. Empress Jessa has assumed her mother’s title but she must send her champions (Heath, Sword & Maddox) to the Mirrored City to negotiate support for her claim.

The architecturally symmetrical settlements of Baash and Dessim function as a single city-state within the Protectorate, separated by radically different ideologies as part of an ancient social experiment. Imagine if the rural south was allowed to have its own theocratic government and the blue states had theirs.

Heath and Sword are on a mission of diplomacy but they quickly find themselves in disagreement and head their separate ways. In fact every character and viewpoint in the book is challenged. We also meet a couple of new faces. Soren is a boy living on the street who ends up working in a dubious brothel. Lyta is the adopted lesbian daughter of a stern patriarch.

And meanwhile Jessa has her own adventures in the surreal undersea kingdom of the Abyss.

I'm really happy with this book. There are lots of twists, surprises and the tragic end of a beloved character.

Stay tuned.

Mike bode is the author of The Queen of Lies, the first installment in the ongoing series, Architects of the Grand Design. His next book comes out September. Sign up for the mailing list for more info.

The project is under the working title of The Mirrored City. I'm 50,938 words into the first draft with a target to be done by June. Here's a taste of the prologue...




The necromancer Isik followed behind the Patrean guard. The streets and narrow alleys of Dessim were still a mystery to him. The walls were riddled with tiny alcoves, shrines to any of the thousands of gods the people of the city worshipped as part of the Host. There was actually a god of tax evasion who was currently quite popular.


“What is your name?” Isik had a thick Volkovian accent.


“Fox,” The Patrean soldier replied. They all looked alike so it was impossible to tell if he should have known the guard or not. Fox was not a familiar name.


Isik nodded. “In Volkov, it was easy, the Patreans wear their names on their uniforms so we can tell them apart.”


“It’s not often people here even bother to ask,” Fox commented.


“Then what do they call you?” Isik inquired.


Fox shrugged, “Well… ‘Hey you’ and ‘excuse me’ are pretty common. But it gets more colorful when I make arrests.”


Isik sighed. “It is a shame. I think that if everyone looked alike the world would have far less problems.”


“If the world had less violence, I’d be out of a contract,” Fox quipped.


“And if fewer people were murdered I may have to take up a craft,” Isik admitted. “Still I think it’s a better world where you do not constantly have to interrupt the coroner’s dinner to drag him to the scene of a murder, yes? Perhaps we could make paintings.”


Picture 26You've been asking for it for weeks.... well it's finally here. The Queen of Lies is available in trade paperback!

That's right... you can buy a hard copy today and she looks beautiful. At 318 pages and 7 x 10 inch trim, this is a good, long read that won't leave you squinting. The drop caps, fleurons and Baskerville font are a sheer delight for the eye, especially for those who hate e-readers.

The CreatSpace store is taking orders this very moment. Amazon will have it in the next business day or so.

What about signed copies?

If you buy one and you live in Atlanta you can hit me up in person. I will also have signing events here.

If you don't then.... You can head over to My Signed Copy store. Delivery might take longer depending on availability (i.e. if I have to have new books printed and the time it takes to haul my ass to the post office etc.)  It also costs more since I have to ship it to myself, then ship it out but all that cost is included in the $20 tag... for now. 😉

"An alcoholic wizard, a priest turned assassin, a lovable soul-stealing sword; and a rebellious daughter with the power to control the elements. Survival depends on their ability to work together— it's the only way to win out against the manipulative scheming of the Queen of Lies."

551ebc425d6baIt's finally here!!! The Queen of Lies is available now on Kindle... and Kindle Unlimited subscribers can read it for free.  Click the image to buy the Kindle version in my Amazon store (and hell buy whatever else you want while you're there)

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The print version will be available in May. I need to work out some logistics on signed copies but it will likely be a pre-order process with a limited number. Barnes and Noble and iBooks versions are coming in June.