Hey all,

I wanted to put the word out that today Changes is featured on Bookbub (and if you haven’t signed up for their free email list, definitely check it out) today. It’s free from now through the 12th, so if you haven’t been formally introduced to Randall Lee, here’s your chance.
If you have read Changes, though, and you liked it, please let your friends know!
Here’s the link:

ALSO, I wanted to let everybody know that one of my absolute favorite books of the last year or so, Paul Tremblay’s A Head Full of Ghosts, is only $1.99 for a very limited time. It’s a fantastic book that’s gotten a ton of great reviews. Check it out. You won’t be sorry.

Here’s THAT link:

Thanks again, everybody, and happy reading!

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Another update!

Hey, all:

I missed this year’s Chinese New Year festivities, so here’s a late 恭喜發財 to everyone in the Year of the Monkey. I’ve managed, in a boring and not at all epic fashion, to totally throw my back out. Between that and the loss of Bowie, I’m not at all pleased with how 2016 has started out… Anyway, I digress (as I tend to do).

Let me tell you about something awesome instead. If you are a fan of Randall Lee (and if you aren’t…um…not to be rude but… what are you doing here, again?) you absolutely, positively MUST check out M.H. Boroson’s The Girl with Ghost Eyes. 51roOccck0L._SX333_BO1,204,203,200_

Why? Well, ahem, listen to this:

It’s the end of the nineteenth century in San Francisco’s Chinatown, and ghost hunters from the Maoshan traditions of Daoism keep malevolent spiritual forces at bay. Li-lin, the daughter of a renowned Daoshi exorcist, is a young widow burdened with yin eyes–the unique ability to see the spirit world. Her spiritual visions and the death of her husband bring shame to Li-lin and her father–and shame is not something this immigrant family can afford.

When a sorcerer cripples her father, terrible plans are set in motion, and only Li-lin can stop them. To aid her are her martial arts and a peachwood sword, her burning paper talismans, and a wisecracking spirit in the form of a human eyeball tucked away in her pocket. Navigating the dangerous alleys and backrooms of a male-dominated Chinatown, Li-lin must confront evil spirits, gangsters, and soulstealers before the sorcerer’s ritual summons an ancient evil that could burn Chinatown to the ground.

With a rich and inventive historical setting, nonstop martial arts action, authentic Chinese magic, and bizarre monsters from Asian folklore, The Girl with Ghost Eyes is also the poignant story of a young immigrant searching to find her place beside the long shadow of a demanding father and the stigma of widowhood. In a Chinatown caught between tradition and modernity, one woman may be the key to holding everything together.



Whether you’re totally new to the genre or the kind of mega nerd (like me) who sought out every one of the Mr. Vampire and A Chinese Ghost Story movies, you’ll find yourself completely sucked into this book. Boroson knows his stuff, and I’m not just talking about the Chinese folk lore and Taoist mysticism… the book is fast-paced, beautifully written, and totally fun.

So please check it out. You won’t be sorry.

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A reminder, on the dark days

Almost a year since an update. That’s gotta be some sort of record, eh?
Sorry, guys.
Things have been a bit weird lately, and not always in a good way.
I haven’t been in the best head space lately. I haven’t had the time to write like I should. When I do have a minute, I usually work on a bit of fiction… I’m horribly behind on about ten different projects and, if you’re waiting for one or more of them, I apologize.

On the bright side, I’ve recently learned (well, re-learned) an important lesson.

For the last few months, I’ve been dealing with some fairly serious depression. That’s not really anything new; I’ve had issues with depression and anxiety for much of my life. And yes, I’ve done all the things a person is supposed to do… the therapy, the medication, etc. Sometimes – hell, many times, I suppose – that stuff works for people. It’s never done much for me, I’m afraid.

What *did* help, more than any sort of therapy or medication, anyway, was meditation. At least until recently.

In the last few months, meditation wasn’t doing so hot anymore. Maybe because, for depression and stuff, I’d always relied on mindfulness meditation… and being mindful was only making me realize just how miserable I really felt.

So, yeah, I was starting to get a little worried. Here I was, trying to build a ladder to climb out of the hole I was in and all of a sudden I find my tools broken and unusable. It was tough to imagine things getting much worse. Then I remembered what happened the last time I’d felt so low… When things had been hopeless, I wrote. I hadn’t felt like writing. In fact, I had been dealing with chronic back pain that made sitting and focusing on anything difficult, but it didn’t matter.

I wrote.

That’s how Randall Lee came to be. Out of necessity. I didn’t know how to live, and neither did he. So, together, we figured it out.

Changes was (and still is) the fastest book I’ve written. The first draft was finished in under three months.

I’m pretty sure it saved my life. No, not pretty sure. I know it did.

And I don’t mean to sound melodramatic, even though I’m sure I probably do. The act of writing, of creating something, brought me back to who I was, outside of the pain and despair I was feeling.

I had to remember that recently with everything that’s going on now, because I have to tell you, that hole was feeling mighty deep…

So just the other day, I sat and I wrote. Not a lot. I think over the course of 90 minutes or so I probably wrote a page and a half. Was it good? Probably not. Did it somehow address the way I was feeling so I could work out my problems on the page? Not at all.

But I felt, and continue to feel, better.

It’s not all rainbows and puppy dogs or anything, but it’s something. The hole isn’t so deep anymore. Or maybe it is. Maybe it is, but I’ve found an elevator that I’d forgotten was there.

I didn’t intend to come on here today and whine about my own problems. Hell, look at the world… Look at Paris and Beirut, look at Syria… There is so much darkness, so much pain…

But y’know what? Whether it’s just me and my piddly-ass problems or it’s the whole world, I know one thing for sure: Art saves. When it seems like there’s nothing else out there for you, when it feels like you’re dying and you can’t find a way out, you can *make* a way out. You can create something when it feels like there’s nothing but destruction all around you.

Write something. A poem, a story, anything. Draw, paint, sculpt, dance. I don’t know what floats your boat. Hell, maybe you don’t either.

But it’s time to find out.

Because what the world needs now isn’t a really great hedge fund manager or a charismatic politician. It doesn’t need dogma and division and hate. The world needs art.
And that means that it needs you, too.

So get to work, and I promise to do the same.

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Gong Xi Fa Cai! Happy Chinese New Year!

Hey all,

Crazy busy here, but I wanted to drop in long enough to let you all know that the brand new Randall Lee novella, Eating Bitter, is coming out TOMORROW!!!
You can pre-order it here:

This is a very different sort of story… no mysteries, no kung fu fights. Instead, it’s a story about how the characters deal with all the stuff they’ve been through over the course of three books. It’s also a sort of prologue to the 4th full length Randall Lee novel, The Art of War, which is likely going to be the biggest, most epic Randall tale yet.
I’m very curious to see what you guys think.

In other news, lots of projects coming down the pipeline including the second Nephilim Codex book, a teen romance novel, and two new mysteries with protagonists who are quite a bit different from our beloved bumbling acupuncturist.

More news as soon as possible!



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“I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.”

–Douglas Adams

I’m late on stuff again, and I apologize. I sometimes make my goals a bit unreasonable in the first place but then add on the fact that I frequently forget the chaos that comes with having children (and on summer break, yet), livestock, and a new dog? Fuhgeddaboudit.
I have not been idle, though!
I’m well into the final stretch on Down, the second book in the Nephilim Codex series, and I have a decent amount done on Eating Bitter, Randall Lee 3.5. I would say that one good, solid work week would be enough to finish both, but we’ll see.
In any case, I just wanted to quickly say that I’m not dead, new stuff WILL come soon, and, hopefully, it’ll be worth the wait.
I will say this about Eating Bitter: It is not the standard Randall Lee story (whatever that is).
One of the problems I always had with some of the great ongoing mystery series is the lack of consequences. So many times you see the hero of a novel struggle and suffer and in some cases almost die… only to find that, in the next book, nothing has changed. In fact, much of the time those experiences are never even mentioned again.
That bugs me.
Eating Bitter is about consequences. Don’t expect insane kung fu fights and non-stop action because this novella is about dealing with the physical and mental trauma of the first three books. It’s about the relationships that we’ve seen forged (and tested), and how those characters will go forward.
And it leads into the fourth Randall Lee novel: The Art of War, which I CANNOT wait to get started on.

More to come soon!
(I hope)



p.s. – Regarding the new dog… Here he is: Chet the Wonder Dog:10521526_10154358117080433_5252056134317772970_n

p.p.s. If you’re at all interested in checking out what I’m listening to for writing, here’s my playlists for (Down )and (Eating Bitter).

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Happy New Year!

So hey, everybody. Hope you all are having a wonderful holiday season!

A few of you have written to ask about my mom’s health… and I’m happy to say that she’s doing much better. Thanks for all the good wishes!

Things have been crazy busy here, but it is of course of EARTH-SHATTERING importance that I post my Top 10 of 2013 list, right?!!??!?!??!??!?!?!?`1111/1/1/1/1/


Here goes…


Top 10 Books (These are books I read in 2013, though some may have been released earlier) in no particular order.


10.  Gone Girl – Gillian Flynn

Flynn gives these perfect little details and observations… I think I learned more about writing by reading this book than I ever did in any writing class.

9. The Fault in Our Stars – John Green

Everybody told me that this is a book that guts you. I mean, it’s about terminally ill kids, for god’s sake. And of course I could totally predict what was going to happen within the first ten pages… but that doesn’t matter. At. All. Because the characters are so charming and so unexpectedly funny that you don’t realize Green slowly inflicting little paper cuts on your soul…

8. Turning the Mind Into an Ally – Sakyong Mipham

The only non-fiction book on the list this year. A GREAT book for beginning practitioners, but also a great book for advanced practitioners, too.  Mindfulness from the Tibetan perspective.

7. The Legend of Zero: Forging Zero – Sara King

I don’t read a whole lot of science fiction, but this book really surprised me. Great characters, great world-building. Tons of fun. Highly, highly recommended.

6. The Ocean at the End of the Lane – Neil Gaiman

A beautiful book. And if you get the audiobook, you get to listen to Neil himself. J

5. Speaks the Nightbird – Robert R. McCammon

I grew up reading McCammon’s books, but for some reason I kept putting this one off. That was dumb because this book is astounding. Great mystery, great setting, great characters… just an amazing book from beginning to end.

4. The Perks of Being a Wallflower – Stephen Chbosky

Chbosky managed to distill what it was like to be a teenager in the early 90s perfectly. This is one rare case, though, where I think I may have liked the movie even more than the book… because we get more of Sam and Patrick.

3. Dee Gong An – Translated by Robert van Gulik

Really interesting mystery written sometime in the 18th century in China, translated for the first time into English by Robert van Gulik. The similarities to western mystery novels are almost as striking as the differences (though the inclusion of supernatural elements would seem to make solving the mysteries a bit easier…). Pretty nifty, especially if you’re a nerd for Chinese stuff… as I clearly am.

2. Mountain Home – Bracken Macleod

A tense, bloody ride into the heart of chaos. Definitely check this one out…  It’s tough to believe this is Macleod’s first novel! I anxiously await his next one!

1. Fuckin’ Lie Down Already – Tom Piccirilli

Noir. Jet. Black. Noir. Tom Piccirilli is frequently called a writer’s writer, and there’s a good reason for that. He is the David Copperfield to my Hey-I-kinda-learned-this-one-card-trick-to-pick-up-chicks-but-I-forgot-how-it-goes.

(Note to young readers: Girls? Not that impressed with card tricks. Even well-done ones.)

Anyway, yes, Piccirilli is a writer’s writer. He also happens to be a READER’S writer. So if you haven’t checked him out, you should.


Top…er… 5 Movies (I didn’t watch much this year, apparently)


John Dies at the End – It…I… You… I mean… You just gotta see it.

Stoker  –  From the director of Oldboy. A really slick, wicked, make you wanna take a bath in bleach kind of movie.

This is the End –  Hilarious. I can’t believe this came out of Hollywood, actually, or that some of the stars involved agreed to do it. But I’m sure glad they did.  Complete insanity.

The World’s End – Very funny, nostalgic, and super cool. I’ll pretty much watch anything that Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, and Edgar Wright. It was great to see some of the Spaced people again in cameos.

American Mary – I’ve heard about the Soska sisters for a bit, but now I see why. Really dark, really fun. Very different from the standard horror fare.


So, what were your favorites this year? I’d love to hear some suggestions!


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A lot has happened since my last post. My mother has been in and out of the hospital for most of that time, with an as yet still un-diagnosed illness. It’s been a lot like watching an episode of House… they just sort of don’t know what’s wrong with her.
SO… I’ve been spending a lot of time back and forth to the hospital with her. And hospital wifi sucks.
Which leaves me once again apologizing for a lack of updates.
Anyway, Jianghu is available now (ahem…, and I’m super happy to say that so far the reviews have been great.
I also have a few other projects that recently became available. My story “Still” is in Nightscapes: Volume 1 ( with awesome folks like Ray Garton, Lisa Morton, Lisa Mannetti, and tons more, and I did a chapter in the collaborative novella The Carnival 13 (, which is a pretty cool charity project with all proceeds benefiting Scares that Care, a very cool children’s charity.

Oh, and the Randall Lee Omnibus is available, collecting Changes, Pressure Point, and Jianghu.


Enough of my pluggin’.

Nobody really showed much interest in the Jackie Chan thing, so I guess that’s scrapped, but if you get the chance, definitely go see Chinese Zodiac. Just goes to show that age is just a number. 😉

I have to get ready to head back up to the hospital (she’s actually getting to go back home today, supposedly) but I will post something more substantial soon.

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