Yes, I am going to write The Great American Hobo Novel

I have finally decided I am going to do this for my next big project.

I have been interested in this idea for some time. A bit tongue in cheek, but I have called this idea The Great American Hobo Novel for some time. Mostly as a place holder name. I feel there’s a lot of potential here in this subject that hasn’t been mined. Yes, there have been other novels and films about this subject. I think I have found a way to approach it from a different direction and perspective. I have a plot in mind that may be workable.

That’s the problem. I have a plot. I don’t have a story. Not yet.

Writers will recognize this Catch 22 right away. Usually, we come up with the story first and the plot unfolds from there. This time, I came up with the plot first. But a plot is not a story. It’s a framework of a house. The story is the roof that makes the house.

This can be analogized by a simple plot: A boy finds a dog. He comes to love it. The dog saves his life.. Later, the dog catches rabies and the boy has to shoot the dog.

That’s a plot. Admittedly a recognizable one, but it serves our purpose of illustration. That’s a plot.  It’s  not a story.

So where’s the story in our example? Here: A boy grows up to be a man. That’s the story. The plot can be any framework that reveals the elements of that story. Maybe it wasn’t a dog. Maybe it was a hamster. See? Plots are not stories, and stories are not plots.

Thus, my dilemma.

I have the plot. I don’t have the story. Therefore, these are uncharted waters for me. I believe the story will reveal itself over time as I dig deeper and do more research. But I want to make sure I have it within my grasp before I get too involved with this project.

Meanwhile, it’s not like I’m lying fallow. I am getting prepared to attend several SF/F conventions this year, write more short stories, schedule readings at local libraries, and get more stuff out with Argo Navis Publishing.

A full plate by any standard. But times have changed and writing isn’t only writing anymore. Today writers have to be editors, publishers, marketers…God help us. I don’t like it, but I can’t pretend it’s unnecessary.

All the same I am getting excited about this project. I have been thinking about it for over a year and the idea has held up under scrutiny. That’s not always the case, either. Sometimes I will have an idea and after I study it a while I determine it’ s not worth the attention. I’m very picky and choosy about what I do and do not write nowadays. A lot of that comes with experience, a lot of it is having the belief in yourself to make the right judgments.

Because of the time frame you might expect there to be flappers, a particular subject I am interested in and have blogged about before. I don’t think so for this novel, however. It isn’t coming together in my mind to be that kind of novel. Not yet at any rate.

But it’s early days yet. There is a lot of history and culture which I need to start digging into.

Which is why I need to get started now. 🙂


I Updated My Professional Web Page

I had the feeling for sometime my old web page was getting kind of bloated. Way too many pages and too much information crammed on each page made for a difficult reading experience.

I have pared it down considerably and now have what I consider relevant and important information for a quick read/perusal. I still have the actual pages from before, I haven’t deleted them forever. I’ve fixed it so they aren’t being published and hopefully create no dead links.

I also updated many of the pictures and got rid of some, again in the interest of streamlining. I hope you enjoy it. If you want to check it out just click on the link below. Thanks!

Kenneth Mark Hoover website

Sorry, but this is not why I write. And I can’t change that.

Okay, it’s been a while since an update. It’s not like I’ve been completely lazy. We have a lot of family and personal things going on around here this summer and it has eaten into a lot of my time. I mean, I haven’t been camping this summer (much) so that should give you some idea how busy I’ve been. (And it doesn’t look like I will be going camping until September at the earliest.)

But that’s not what I wanted to talk about. What I want to talk about is a decision I have made about my writing.

I have two or three more stories to get out on Argo Navis Publishing before WorldCon in Chicago this year. That’s cool and easily doable. But after that I think I am going to turn away from self-publishing for a while. If not forever.

I have many reasons for this, and it’s not because I haven’t sold any stories. Actually, I’ve done better than I ever thought. No, it’s because I don’t like it. I don’t like the feel of it. I don’t like the fact it takes away a shit-ton of ordinary writing time away from me.

This decision has not been made overnight. It’s been a long time coming. I’ve been struggling with this, probably way more than I should. But I’m a writer first and not a publisher. It’s not me. It’s not who I am. I don’t feel comfortable in that role at all. Some people do, and that’s good for them and I wish them well. But we’re talking about me.

I am a writer. I am not a publisher. Nothing I can do will change how I view and define myself, and how I have always viewed and defined myself.

It takes away too much time. Writing is more precious to me than self-publishing stories. That’s probably just me but I can’t help the way I feel. I can’t live or do something that goes against my basic nature. It’s not for me. It’s not. It’s just not.

Not to mention I’ve got so much else to concentrate on right now I feel overwhelmed. I don’t know if I will continue writing. Though I suspect I will. Maybe I will chuck it all and drive a truck for a living. My father did. It was good enough for him even though he and I were estranged. Then the new novel Haxan from CZP comes out in a couple of years. I’m not completely stupid. I know the business has changed enough I have to do a lot of promotion for Haxan and that’s fine. I actually like doing that because I like going to cons and libraries and blogging and whatnot. So that’s okay.

The second reason I am thinking about leaving self-publishing is because I have never written anything so I can see my name in print. Hell, when I first started writing professionally I used the pseudonym “Alden Crealock” because I didn’t care about my personal name. That wasn’t my motivation for writing then, and it’s not my motivation now. I only use my real name today because I don’t care whether it’s my name or some pen name up there below the title. For me, the story is first. The name has no bearing.

That’s not why I write.

Finally, it’s too easy. All right, I try to go the extra mile and have good covers, good editing, good style and formatting and all that stuff. Not because that’s my name on the cover (we’ve covered that) but because if I am putting a story out for readers I want them to have the best experience I can provide for them, and enjoy reading it. Because I’m also a reader, as well a being a writer.

To be honest, I think most people in this business feel that way. They want to produce a good product. But for me it feels too easy. That’s how I feel. I can’t help the way I feel. What works for other people doesn’t always work for another.

I can’t help the way I feel. It feels easy. And I kind of know it’s easy because there’s some really bad crap out there. I mean, it’s awful. It’s embarrassing. The writing is appalling…because it’s so easy to publish. Now I must be fair. I’m not giving every publisher a pass here, either. Some publishers make a living, a very good living, publishing really bad stuff. That’s their business model and that’s fine for them. Readers like it and they know their market. I wish them well.Writing is always hard enough anyway no matter what you are working on or publishing. I don’t have to read it, and don’t. But I do understand what writers go through. If nothing else I understand and sympathize with that.

I’m old-fashioned, I guess. I like sending a story in to an editor or publisher and having them decide whether or not my story is good enough to be published. I have always said, and I really believe this, that writers are the absolute worst people to decide whether their story is good enough to be published or not. No one, and I mean no one, is more ill-suited to pass judgment on his own work than a writer. We’re simply too close to it. So I do like having someone else make that call.

Again, just me.

I can’t help but wonder if some people are saying, “Okay, that’s easy for you to say. You’re a member of SWFA and HWA and even if a lot of readers don’t know you a lot of editors do and they know what kind of quality and professionalism you bring. I don’t have a track record and I’m trying to build one.”

I understand that, too. I’m only saying this is not who I am. I’m a writer, not a publisher. I can’t pretend otherwise. Does that mean I no longer want you to buy my stories? Of course not. That’s not what I’m saying.

I am saying I can no longer be someone I am not. I’m a writer, but that doesn’t mean I am going to abandon any story I have put out there for readers.They’re my stories. I’m proud of them. I’m proud of everything I write, otherwise I wouldn’t have published it in the first place. I sure as hell would have never sent it to an editor to be considered if I wasn’t proud of the story.

Oh, well. This is the current state I’m in. I seriously think (about 95% sure) I need to go in another direction. Because this is not me. It…it just doesn’t feel right.

It’s not who I am, and I don’t like it and it makes me feel uncomfortable. It would be like me going out and creating my own Wikipedia page about myself. That’s just…I don’t know. And I don’t care if that’s the way the business is now.

That’s not why I write. It never has been. It never will be.

So. Yeah. Moving on, I suppose.  Of course, this is me we’re talking about so everything could change by suppertime. Thanks for listening, anyway.  🙂

Dark Secrets of Blood and Mythical Power in the Streets of Haxan

When I wrote “Alpenglow’ I knew I was going to be pushing a boundary or two. Which is fine because that’s how I write anyway and that sort of viewpoint always works well in Haxan.

I’ve had several readers remark how this story creeped them out. I can see why and I’d be less than honest if I said I wasn’t going for that effect. This was a deliberate attempt on my part to show what the Old West was really like (at least from a cultural point of view) and how people reacted to those pressures. Naturally, being Haxan there is a dark undercurrent of fantasy and horror running throughout the story. Well, what else can you expect when a lone mountain man comes down out of Taos into Haxan carrying scalps….?

I am really glad this story is being offered by Argo Navis Publishing. I hope you enjoy reading it and being shaken by it as much as I enjoyed writing it. Have fun!


Alpenglow: when the last rays of a setting sun illuminate the snowy peaks...and remind you of your own mortality.

Product Description: A brand new Haxan story! An ancient trapper named Cesar Coffin comes unannounced out of Taos, New Mexico into the grinding maelstrom of Haxan. He has fresh scalps hanging on saddle pommel…and an even darker secret hidden in the fragments of his soul as he seeks to destroy the demon who rules Haxan: Marshal John T. Marwood.

“The Haxan universe is rich with character, history and mythology. Every story is a joy to read.” —Jennifer Brozek, editor and author

Fishing the Styx: Moby-Dick and Dante’s Inferno, with horror and revenge served cold in Hell….

As a writer I like all my stories. I would not submit them for publication if I felt they had nothing to give readers. But I have to admit there are some stories that are very important to me for one reason or another. “Fishing the Styx” is such a story.

I have always loved reading Dante’s Inferno and Melville’s Moby-Dick. They are my favorite classics ever. But I got to thinking about what might be living in the River Styx…and what would happen if you actuallywent fishing for it….

I don’t want to say much more about this unusual story. I will leave it for you to discover what it’s all about. It scared me when I was writing it, and I hope it make you feel the same way after you read it. It’s being put out by Argo Navis Publishing and is available on Kindle. I do hope you give this story a read and leave a review. I honestly hope you like it a lot.


Fishing the Styx: A new short SF story from Argo Navis Publishing!

Product Description: “If you can imagine a mashup of Dante’s Inferno with Melville’s Moby Dick, with a little mathematical horseplay along for the ride, maybe you might come close to imagining “Fishing the River Styx”.

“Kisa, a former Russian mathematician is in Hell because that’s what happens to nearly everyone, ferried there from earth by the great Leviathan that swims the mobius strip that is the river Styx, which borders the infnity that is Hell. Enraged by the blatant injustice of it all, Kisa decides to do something about it, and that something is to hunt and kill the Leviathan itself.

“But as the demon Talon points out, “Hell isn’t about punishment. It’s about learning.” So maybe Kisa has something yet to learn. Or not. You have to decide that for yourself. After all, demons lie.” —Richard Parks, fantasist and SF author

My New Story! Lisetta Lawrence is a myopic graduate student with knobby knees and a troubled love life….

In the story “Tennessee Waltz” Lisetta Lawrence is the main character. Which is interesting because she was a secondary character from an unpublished novel. But I have know over the years there was more to her story that needed to be told.

I am a writer. I talk about writing in this blog all the time. But I was trained in physics. Lisetta is a character who can bring some parts of that academic world to light, I think. I wrote this story when I was living in Mississippi. I’ve always liked it and I drew on my two years in Tennessee as source material.

I’m very proud of this story put out by Argo Navis Publishing and I really hope you like reading it. There are even a few autobiographical aspects to it as well. You can find it on Kindle and if you do read the story I would very much appreciate if you would take the time to post a review on Amazon. Thanks, guys! 🙂


What hidden secret does Lisetta Lawrence find in a Tennessee hollow? And what part does the nameless cat play? Read the story to find out!


Product Description: Lisetta Lawrence is a myopic graduate student with knobby knees and a troubled love life. She is sent on a hopeless fact finding mission into a distant Tennessee hollow and discovers a reclusive genius who keeps bees, and a nameless ginger cat that grins at her.

Working together they reveal the true nature of the universe which will change quantum physics, manned space travel, and Lisetta’s life, forever!

Wuthering: A vengeful take on Wuthering Heights in the violent world of Haxan

Mark here. The world of Haxan gives me a lot of room to retell stories and do variations. The short story “Wuthering” is such an example. I mean, how many settings lend themselves to a retelling of Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights? Well, in my opinion, Haxan does.

I had fun writing this story because it proved to me I could write, literally, anything in the world of Haxan about any topic whatsoever. That’s one reason I like Haxan. There’s a lot of built-in versatility other than your ordinary cliched western. Once again, I am not saying I am the first or the best writer to have done this with westerns. I merely argue I am having fun doing it!

If you are interested in reading the story please click on the link below. The story has been published by Argo Navis Publishing and it’s currently being offered on Kindle. I really do hope you like reading this story half as much as I enjoyed writing it. 🙂


As a neverending gale scours the land and the souls of men, a vengeful revenant comes to Haxan seeking the love she lost....


Product Description: Cathy Bell is a vengeful ghost seeking retribution. As Cathy night-walks the New Mexican desert in a jealous rage and prepares to strike an innocent family, Marshal John Marwood decides to confront the revenant — by risking his own life, while forever losing the only woman he will ever love.

“Hoover never hesitates to go deep and find what it means to be human.” —Richard Parks, fantasist & SF author

Gepetto’s Orphans: The Emergence of the Lost People Comes to Haxan

My new Haxan story “Gepetto’s Orphans” has a long lineage. You might say it’s as old as the story of Pinocchio himself. Now, truth be told, many stories have been written about a wooden boy who becomes real. But being a dark fantasy writer it’s my job to look beyond the ordinary and seek the extraordinary.

That’s why I wanted to write a story not about Pinocchio, but about his creator. And what better setting than Haxan, that grinding maelstrom of space and time in the Old West?

I wrote this story for one reason. A very good friend of mine, M.G. Ellington, loves the story of Pinocchio. Which got me to thinking  how I could write a story that incorporated the themes she liked but set in Haxan. “Gepetto’s Orphans” was the frightening result, and I dedicate it to her.

“Gepetto’s Orphans” is now available from Argo Navis Publishing on Kindle. This is a special story to my heart, and one in which you will, I hope, see Marshal Marwood in a different light. Magra Snowberry also plays a pivotal role. Enjoy! 🙂


The story of Piniocchio comes to Haxan...and wooden simulacra will never be the same again!

Product Description: In the quiet streets of Haxan, New Mexico, circa 1874, strange enigmatic statues of wooden Native Americans appear. Beautifully carved, with exquisite attention to detail, the statues rest on massive pedestals and cannot be moved. They are harbingers of The Emergence, a time when the Lost People will spill from the dark bowels of the earth and bring with them the end of the physical world.

Marshal John Marwood is charged with protecting Haxan. The woman he loves, Magra Snowberry, holds the key to understanding what The Emergence is all about. But this time Marwood’s bone-handled Colt is useless against a foe made of living wood. And if he does somehow defeat these orphans from Gepetto…how can he find the man who is carving them, and bringing them to life?

“Combines dark fantasy and Gothic influences while avoiding sentimentality and myth.” –Michael Merriam, award winning author of Should We Drown in Feathered Sleep

Some Personal Thoughts about Writing on Valentine’s Day

One of the things I have learned in being a writer is measure.

Everything must be done in a measured way when you are writing. Even when you are going great guns and your typewriter (or in this day and age your computer) is hot you have to be measured in the way you approach your work. I used to stay up all night and write until four or five in the morning. I no longer do that because A.) I’m older and I need my sleep, and B.) I’m more mature as a writer and I realize that more can be accomplished with small dedicated writing sessions than a marathon.

Which is not to say I have not done writing marathons recently. A couple of years ago I wrote three stories in three days and I documented it all on my old Live Journal blog. Part of the reason I did it was because I wanted a challenge and I wanted to prove to myself I could do it.

I suppose for me writing is always going to be about proving whether or not I can do something. The new Haxan novel I am working on is itself a real challenge. That’s what drew me to it in the first place. Everyone has different reasons for writing. Even I have very different reasons from day to day. The time I am talking about was when I wanted to prove to myself I could write three stories in three days. And I did it! Even better, I sold two of them and the third, “Alpenglow” was recently released by Argo Navis Publishing.

I mention this not to toot my own horn (although I am not against that, either) but because I have been thinking about that time, and the kind of writer I was then, and the kind of writer I am now. Today I am more careful in how I write. I think as a result my writing is better than it was. I have always been focused. That has never been a big problem for me. But the act of writing and marrying it with the mental adaptability and preparation that goes with it…well, I think I’ve gotten better at that.

Like they say, practice makes perfect. Or, if not perfect, at least nominally better. And for a writer that is good enough.

(On the topic of why I write, I want to come back to this and address it in further detail later on.  It is personal, though.)

The Saga of Ragnar Greenkirtle and the “graskinna” Loki

One of the things I like about being a writer is how I can do research about topics that interest me and use that information to generate story ideas. I have always been interested in Viking culture and when I read the Sagas I was taken with the voice used to tell their stories.

Being a writer I only steal from the best so I decided to steal from the Sagas. I wrote the story “The Fire Egg” and liked the result. There are a few twists and turns in the story and I’ve had people remark on the ending because it is so stark, and because it shows Man in his one true form.

I also don’t pull any punches about the Viking culture in this story. I now write mostly westerns but I see the same problems in both genres. People would rather depend on cliches and what makes them feel safe than admit what these cultures were really like. Vikings have become romanticized over time but the truth is much more brutal and bloody. When all is said and done the Viking people were not very nice people, even among themselves. Even less when they came across a stranger from an unknown culture.

This is another short story being offered by Argo Navis Publishing on the Kindle. I hope you give it a look and maybe a review if you feel so inclined. Thanks!

A story from the Viking Sagas you might not have heard, or imagined, before.....

Product Description: This, then, is the tale. In the waning days of the Viking age a lost soul falls from the distant stars to the barren shores of Iceland. There Ragnar Greenkirtle, explorer and practitioner of Greek logike, finds and protects the alien called Loki. As cultural forces build, Ragnar is forced to face the true meaning of his existence and question whether a violent and savage culture deserves to survive…or evolve into something beyond the present ken of men.

“Mark Hoover is a writer who never hesitates to go deep, to try to find the core of what it means to be human and take a good hard look. If he has to stare down a nightmare or two along the way, well, that’s just fine.” —Richard Parks, author of the Lord Yamada series

Does Going Indie Mean Less Time for Writing?

I have finally caught up a bit on indie publishing stuff (and other things in life) so I can turn back to the new Haxan novel in progress.

I am glad. I was starting to feel I had lost touch with it. I think this can happen if you don’t keep looking at a WIP and staying connected. It happens to me, anyway.

I still have a lot to do this week. But it is looking less bumpy that it was last week. I was also thinking about how busy this summer will be for me. I have a lot of things planned and I will have to juggle all my time. Not a problem, except if I fall behind again that means less time for writing.

I don’t like that.

It’s one of the reasons I am a little irked with the whole new indie trend in publishing right now. From my own perspective it leaves a LOT less time for writing. I understand the need for it, and these changes in publishing aren’t going to stop just because I find them personally inconvenient. I don’t like having to wear all these new hats, but I have to and since I have to I am going to do my absolute best.

But I do not like the fact it takes away so much time from basic writing.

I don’t like it, Sam I Am. I do not like Green Eggs and Ham. I don’t think I ever will.

Look, here’s how it breaks down for me. I’m an old dog. I know I have to learn new tricks. Fine. This won’t be the first time I’ve had to change directions. I’ve done it before and I am doing it again. I am adaptable. I think most writers are, when push comes to shove.

But I have yet to hear a cogent reason why this new business model is stronger purely from the basic writing side. Because, you know what? It’s not.

Less time for writing means less time for writing. You are never going to convince me that is a good thing. I’m a writer, first and foremost. It’s who I am and it’s how I define myself. And, no, I don’t care if this is the new trend or not.When you take less time away from my basic writing you do not make me happy.

Less time for writing is not a good thing. Period.

Violent Love and Quick Death with a Beautiful AI Construct in Star City, Russia

Mark here. My story “The Bonebreaker” has a strange germination. It grew out of my first novel  Fevreblau in that I cherry-picked a few parts from the book and expanded them into a story. Writers do this a lot in case you didn’t know. We write a story about a character and then we might go back and write another story that revolves around a secondary character. It’s a good way to generate new ideas and themes. I use it often. You simply have to be careful you are not telling the same story over and over again.

Another nice thing about this story is I set it in Russia. I have always been fascinated by Russian history because there is so much to work with there. I have written a lot of stories set in Russia and I think it might have helped my sales a little in this regard. It’s a setting you don’t see all the time so it has an exotic flavor to it, especially among western readers. Anything that might make your story stand out to the editor always helps, and I think having written stories in this Future History of Russia definitely helped me.

The story was first published by Challenging Destiny in September, 2005. It has been reprinted by Argo Navis Publishing on Kindle. I hope you like the story! 🙂

The Bonebreaker -- a SF short story set in Star City, Russia

Product Description: As the Russian regime crumbles, a grim man who destroys AI simulacra for a living travels to Star City. There, he traps a young woman seeking freedom. Battered and betrayed by all sides, the Bonebreaker and the newly freed AI called Natalya fight to escape the reprisals and executions emanating from Moscow…and together find a new life in an Archipelago of worldlets orbiting Earth.

“Hoover never hesitates to go deep and find what it means to be human.” –Richard Parks, fantasist & SF author

Love, Betrayal,and Recombinant DNA Gone Wrong in Cabo San Lucas

I remember when I first began to write the short story “Dead Reckoning” and the challenges I faced. The prompt came from a writing class I was taking at the time. They were talking about an exercise the teacher gave a year or so ago in which he wanted the students to write a scene about a boat in trouble.

Everyone turned in a scene about a boat sinking. He seemed disappointed in the turn out after all that time. But I sat there thinking, “No way I would have written about a boat sinking because I know that would be the default plot line. I’d try to look deeper into the possibilities of the prompt than mail in something that boring.”

And then I started. “Ok, wise guy,” I said to myself, “what would you have written instead?”

After the class I went home and wrote this science fiction story. It had the added benefit of being set on a sailboat which feeds into my mania for sailing. The story went through about three very deep revisions until I found the proper voice. It’s one of my favorite stories and was written when I was beginning to move out of the SF genre and into other things. But I like the story no less for all that and people who have read it seem to like it, too.

Of course, you will be the judge of that. It’s being offered on Amazon Kindle now by Argo Navis Publishing. I really do hope you like it, and if you do read it I would appreciate an honest review posted at Amazon. Reviews help writers a lot, even so-called “bad” ones because they point out problems the reader had with the story.

If you are interested just click on the link below. Hope you enjoy the story! 🙂

A story of love and betrayal outside romantic Cabo San Lucas....

Product Description: Three years ago alien crystalline structures fell to Earth near Cabo San Lucas, shattered on impact, and released von Neumann machines. Meanwhile, a 52-foot island of teak and canvas crewed by three people sail toward the towering, enigmatic alien structures with their own hidden mysteries, and fractured lives…and broken love.

As mankind races to an ultimate understanding why these alien structures came to Earth, and how we can communicate with them, two of the three people aboard the sailboat plot to kill the third…while outside forces set into motion their own terrifying plan to jump start the next step of human evolution.

“Mark Hoover is a writer who never hesitates to go deep, to try to find the core of what it means to be human and take a good hard look. If he has to stare down a nightmare or two along the way, well, that’s just fine.” —Richard Parks, author of the Lord Yamada series

I am still a writer first…everything else comes second

This morning I did some publishing work. I uploaded a new science fiction/cyberpunk story entitled “Dead Reckoning” to Kindle. I will let you know when the story goes live and give further details for it and Argo Navis Publishing.

Last week was a long, stressful week for me for many reasons. I am hoping this week will be a little better. (It could hardly be worse.) I hope so. I want to get back to working on the new Haxan novel and I am still in the process of planning my trip along the US/Mexico border to do research. Meanwhile, I am still practicing classical guitar but I really should be a little more serious about a regimented program. Then again, it is foremost a hobby for me and I’m having fun…what’s to gripe about?

Also hoping the weather takes a turn for the better. I miss going outside for my walks. They help clear my head and I use them to think about stories and where I want to go next. I foresee some hiking involved on the trip as well, so it would benefit me to get a little exercise in preparation.

All in all I am doing all right, considering. My main focus now is turning back to work on the new novel because even though I have to do this indie publishing stuff now I still only view it as a necessary evil. I do not and never will define myself as a publisher. I mean, I want to do a good job with Argo Navis Publishing and I want to present quality work for readers. I am the type of person who believes if you have to do something, then do it right.

But it does not define me. I am a writer first and last, and I always will be.

So when all is said and done I am doing all right so far. *knock on wood*  How about you guys, how have you been?

A Very Dark Haxan Story “Alpenglow” has been Released from Argo Navis

I’ve had a special place in my heart for this story a long time. I like a lot of things about it, especially what I tried to do with the characterization. I am never interested in playing it safe, and this story was my attempt at crossing a line or two, but still with the overall idea of delivering a readable story.

This is a dark Haxan story and I still remember when I was working on it at the coffee shop. Some stories are like that. I mean, I can remember when and where I was when I wrote them. “Alpenglow” is such a story.

It’s been released by Argo Navis Publishing and is available for Kindle and Kindle Fire right now. It will be coming soon to Smashwords, Pubit and Anthology builder. When I get around to doing podcasts this will be one story on the slate.

If you are interested in the world of Haxan I hope you guys take the time to give it a look, and I hope you like the story. Thanks! 🙂

Blood, dust, wind....

A Writing Superman…or how I scrambled to get things done before I wigged out

This has been a very busy week for me but a good week. I got a lot done, mostly with Argo Navis, but one thing sticks out. Hoping next week I can take on the role of Superman and get more writing work done....

I haven’t gotten to work on the novel again.

I’m not upset about this turn. I merely note it. I can’t do everything at once. I am not Superman. Next week should be better. I have a lot of writing stuff to catch up on. Oh, ok, Argo Navis Publishing is writer stuff, too, but you know what I mean. I need (and more importantly I want) to get back to work on the new Haxan novel. And I’ve got a ton of reviews to write and all the other little things that go along with writing but are piling up.

Here’s hoping next week will turn out more amenable for writing. I am hoping so, anyway. Then I can leap a tall building in a single bound. Just like Supes! 🙂


Woot! My new science fiction story “Tennessee Waltz” is available from Argo Navis. Hope you guys enjoy it! :)

  • Tennessee Waltz

“Mark Hoover is a writer who never hesitates to go deep, to try to find the core of what it means to be human and take a good hard look. If he has to stare down a nightmare or two along the way, well, that’s just fine.” —Richard Parks, author of the Lord Yamada series


A new Haxan story! “Wuthering” has been released by Argo Navis Publishing. Thanks, guys!

My new Haxan story “Wuthering” has been released by Argo Navis. I hope you enjoy the new story! 🙂



Hoover’s Haxan stories are a delightful blend of the Western and dark fantasy genres. Once you enter the Haxan universe, you may not be able to leave.  —Matthew Pizzolato, editor of The Western Online

Yay! Free Argo Navis Bookmarks!

Argo Navis Publishing will be adding new content over the coming months and years. Please bookmark them and follow them on Twitter @ArgoNavisMedia for  the latest updates.

In the meantime here are bookmarks for you to share and link with. Thanks!

Thoughts on Publishing

Today I have to work at The Observatory, which is fine because I like that job a lot. But as for my personal life I will be glad when these holidays are over and I can get back on a regular schedule around home. I have let some things lapse because other people have needed my time. Which is fine, too, because it can’t be helped.

But I want to get back to the regular grind and catch up on a lot of little writing and publishing details that have slipped through my fingers of late.

One thing I have been thinking of, though. A friend asked me how I like being a publisher now. Truth? I don’t. What I mean is, given the choice I would rather not have to be a publisher. But I can’t change how the profession has morphed and if I want to be successful I have to keep up with those changes. So the bottom line is I simply do not have a choice in the matter, and whether I like or dislike the new role I have to assume means absolutely nothing at all in the long run. It has to be done. Period. Therefore, if I am going to do it (and I am doing it now) then I will do the very best I can.

But do I like it? No. I do not. I do not like green eggs and ham, Sam I Am.

However…once again that choice is no longer up to me if I want to continue writing. Oh, sure, I could pull an Emily Dickinson and throw all my stuff in trunk in the attic. Don’t think I haven’t thought about it. But, and here I have to be honest again, I do also want to be successful at writing. Since that is the case I will keep on learning what I have to learn, sacrifice what I have to sacrifice, and push where I need to push. There’s really no other way around it; not anymore.

Which brings me full circle to the beginning thoughts of this post. I really need for the holidays to be over so I can continue my regular schedule of writing/editing/researching/publishing/blogging/submitting/posting…yikes! Just thinking about all the work that is ahead of me gives me the crawlies. But I am behind on a lot of things. I need to publish the website for Argo Navis, the Twitter account for Argo Navis, update my personal website, blah blah blah. And that’s just the normal mundane stuff…that’s not counting the seven other stories I have lined up to be published, or the stories patiently waiting their turn behind those, or the other stories clamoring to be written. Haha, what a carousel, huh?  Still, what else can you do. It’s either ride the carousel or hop off. I’m going to ride.

Oh, and I’ve got a ton of reviews waiting to be written, too. Like I said…I’m way behind! 😛

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