Top 5 Headlines of 2013 (Fantasy)

As we get set to start a new year, I thought it would be fun to try to come up with 5 headlines that I'd love to see come true in 2013.  These are (at the moment) fantasy headlines and are just for fun.  None of this is true--and though we don't know what 2013 will bring, it's unlikely these 5 headlines will be part of it (except #5---that might actually happen).

#5--Young Adult Author Tom Tancin Announces a New Series to Be Released Beginning in 2014

#4--After a 5 year hiatus, Tom Tancin's Solver of the Unsolvable, Lindsey Scott, Returns in New Thrillstery --Cat's Meow--On July 4th

#3--Tom Tancin's The Atlantis Revolution Now Available in Over a Dozen Countries

*NOTE--Countries Illustrated in Above Graphic Were the Countries that Visited This Site the Most in 2012 (no particular order though)

#2--The Atlantis Revolution makes the bestseller list.

#1--Tom Tancin's The Atlantis Revolution is Set to Become a Movie Trilogy--Starting with Hippocampus in 2015

2012--Year In Review

Every year, I try to write a "Year in Review" in order to look back at my life for the last 365 days and to begin to look forward to the next 365 days.  Here's my year in review for 2012:

In Summary

2012 marked the 15th anniversary of my writing journey.  It was a busy year and an overall good year.  I did have a setback in May/June with my health (and a few other family health issues this year) but everything turned out well.  The translation of Hippocampus marked a very big and important step in my career as an author.  2012 was the year of Hippocampus.  But I'm predicting that 2013 will be bigger for Hippocampus and The Atlantis Revolution.  I'll have a peek into 2013 posted early in the new year. 

January 2012

2012 started off right with the completion of the illustrated cover for Hippocampus (The First Book of the Atlantis Revolution).  January was also an important month in the negotiations in regards to translation rights with the Indonesian publisher.

February 2012

 The second month of the year was all about promotion for Hippocampus.  I even spent a weekend in North Carolina for the Book 'Em NC event. 

March 2012

 The major event in March was the signing of the contract to with Mizan to translate Hippocampus into the Bahasa Indonesian language.  March was also the month when numerous positive reviews started to gather for Hippocampus. 

April 2012

April was probably the most anticipated month of the year because that was when Hippocampus went on sale in the United States.  More reviews came in, I took part in some interviews, and provided some goodies for giveaways. 

May/June 2012

May and June put a bump in the road.  As I was in the middle of promoting Hippocampus (and completing the school year), I became seriously ill.  I was admitted into the hospital--the doctors thought I had a heart attack.  It turned out that I had a severely infected gall bladder and small intestine.  Two surgeries, four nights in the hospital, and numerous weeks of rest later, I was back to work at summer school and I returned to promoting Hippocampus as well. 

July 2012

I spent some of July vacationing in Florida.  The vacation included celebration of my first book deal with a major (international) publisher.  The rest of the month included lots of work on Echinodea (The Second Book of the Atlantis Revolution)

August 2012

August was important because it was when I finished Echinodea (The Second Book of the Atlantis Revolution).  It was also the month that the special seahorse edition of Hippocampus was released.  It turned out that the cover of the special edition was well liked so the rest of the series will feature covers in the same format. 

September 2012

I started September by moving into a new house.  September was also the month that Hippocampus was released in Indonesia.  Not much book progress was made beyond that because I spent the month getting the new school year started and getting situated in the new house.  

October/November 2012

October and November involved lots of work at school and on the new house.  I used The Atlantis Revolution as inspiration for decorating.  Look at those seahorse lamps for the bedroom.

December 2012

The year ended with a potential offer from another publisher (hopefully more details will be forthcoming).  Hippocampus and Echinodea (as well as yours truly) made it onto a few lists over at  And I ended the month/year by working on formatting Echinodea for release in paperback, nook, and kindle--as well as writing Medousa (The Final Book of the Atlantis Revolution)


I want a Hippocampus for Christmas...

I want a Hippocampus for Christmas.  Only a Hippocampus will do....  Wait, that's not how it goes.


Well you may not be able to get a Hippopotamus for Christmas but you can get Hippocampus!  The eBook is just $4.99 and the paperback is $9.99.

Conditions Worsen (Echinodea--Chapter Three)

       The cool liquid encapsulated my body and seemed to fill me with energy.  I forgot how comfortable and relaxed I was while swimming.  Even though this was part of gym class, it still gave me the opportunity to feel like my old self.  Our gym teacher was absent today so the substitute allowed us to spend the time in the pool however we saw fit.  I chose to swim laps and then dive down to the floor and swim up to the surface.  My hope was that I would connect with Aerian through the Hippocampus Syndesi---the special connection Atlantean royals have with the sorcerers and sorceresses that serve them.  That connection was stronger in water, especially for royals trying to master the skill.
       My necklace, a diamond-shaped, silver pendant with a wing on each side and a blue gem in the middle of the top part of the diamond, lit up with growing intensity as I dove to the bottom of the pool.  Grandpa gave me the necklace as a lucky charm, though it turned out to be part of my problems.  The so-called 'royal key' ensured my connection with the island that I now ruled over.  It was no accident that Grandpa gave me the necklace to connect me with Atlantis.
       That thought took me back to the hospital the previous night.  Grandpa was about to tell me something important about my parents.  I planned to see him after school but I also knew that he wouldn't remember our conversation the night before.  The floor of the pool faded to Atlantis---a bird's eye view of the entire island.  Nothing seemed out of the ordinary.  And I didn't find a connection with Aerian so she must not have been calling me.
       Back on the surface, Ashley wrapped her arms around me and pushed me under.  My hands found her stomach and I tickled her, releasing her grip.  Seconds later, she was in my arms and I tossed her into the air.  With a playful scream, she splashed into the pool.
       "Welcome back, Trey Atlas," Ashley smiled.  "Even if it's for just a few minutes."
       "It feels good to be back," I told her.  It's a good thing Jess wasn't in my gym class because jealousy would’ve got the best of her at that moment.
       Ashley and I spent the rest of the period racing each other from one end of the pool to the other.  I won all of the races---it really wasn't a fair match since I was a champion swimmer---but I held back so she wouldn't feel terrible.  The locker room was filled with typical pranks and jokes--of which I became a target in the last few weeks.  I dressed quickly and escaped to biology when the bell rang before the other guys could start giving me a hard time.
       The biology lab was empty when I took my seat, feeling rejuvenated and ready for biology for the first time in weeks.  No one entered the room after me, even after the late bell sounded.  Even Mr. Walker was missing in action.
       And don't forget to meet me in the computer lab with your completed projects tomorrow.  My heart was in my feet, which didn't help me move any faster.  I ran down the hallway, ignoring the hall monitors as they yelled for me to slow down, until I got to the lab.  Trying to be as invisible as possible, I opened the door slowly.
       "Mr. Atlas," the teacher said.  Busted.  "Let me guess, you fell asleep in your last class."  The class let out a laugh in unison.  I smiled and hoped that I hid the embarrassment on my face as I found a seat in between Coal and Jess.
       "You didn't miss much," Coal told me.
       "I forgot we were in here," I said.
       "Did you bring your project?" he asked.
       "No," I answered.  "I didn't even start it."
       "Alright," Mr. Walker walked the room.  "Let's see those projects you came up with.  We're going to try to get through as many of them as possible today and then we'll do the rest tomorrow."  He started up the projector and then turned out the front lights.  "We're going to present the animal phyla from least to most complex.  So we'll start with the sponges."
       Project after project was presented.  I zoned out on most of them, nearly falling asleep during a few.  But, like normal, Mr. Walker brought me back to reality.  "You're up next, Mr. Atlas."
       My stomach lurched into my throat.  Ten minutes left of class and I was on the spot to present my topic.  So I tried to cover.  "My project will take more than ten minutes."
       "So we'll stay past the bell," Mr. Atlas said.  "We need to get through your project today.  Phylum echniodermata is the last phyla before we get to the chordates, which we'll save for tomorrow."
       Honesty was the only thing that would solve this problem.  "I didn't finish my project."
       "Why am I not surprised?"  Mr. Walker walked toward me.  "So let's see what you have."
       The whole truth was necessary.  "I didn't start my project."
       "Ahh, there it is.  Tell me, Mr. Atlas, what exactly do you care about now a days?"  His tone was accusatory and sarcastic.
       I lost control of my words.  "Certainly not your boring class."  I regretted it the second I finished the statement.
       "Well that doesn't make sense," Mr. Walker said.  "If you thought this class was boring, you would work harder to make sure you don't have to take it again.  It appears to me that you love it enough to repeat it."
       "Actually, I just like giving you a hard time so much that I wanted to be able to spend another year doing it."  Once again, I wanted to retract my words.
       "Take your things and get out of my class," Mr. Walker yelled.  "Get yourself over to the guidance office.  And make sure you get there because I'm calling to check."
       "Whatever.  I got enough sleep last night anyway."  A lie—I only slept about four hours—but I knew it'd be hurtful.
       "Get out!"
       I swung my backpack on my shoulder and left the room, kicking the door shut behind me.  Not wanting to get in more trouble than I was already in, I went straight to the guidance office.  Besides, my counselor, Mrs. Parry, was awesome.  Middle aged with three kids, she treated all of her students like one of her own children.  She'd at least ask me about my side of the story, instead of just acting like my thoughts and feelings didn't matter.
       The guidance secretary met my eyes with disapproval.  "He just walked in," she said into the phone.  Mr. Walker followed through on his word to check on me.  She hung up the phone.  "Have a seat, Trey.  Mrs. Parry will be with you in a few minutes."
       The answer to my problem was clear.  I needed to go back to Atlantis.  This wasn't my life anymore.  Fitting in just wasn’t an option now.  Besides, Aerian, Oaren, Ries, and Troy could use my help running the island.  It was my job, not theirs.  The only thing stopping me was the fact that, by law, I had to attend school.  I didn't want my parents getting in trouble while I was away, maybe permanently.
       "Come on in, Trey," Mrs. Parry greeted me with a smile.  I stood and followed her to her office.  "Have a seat."
       Setting my backpack on the floor next to my chair, I took a seat.
       "So what's going on?" Mrs. Parry asked in her motherly way.
       "Mr. Walker..."
       "No, Trey.  I want to know what's bothering you.  I don't want to know about Mr. Walker."
       "Mr. Walker is bothering me."
       She smiled; stifled a laugh.  "This didn't start with Mr. Walker.  Your behavior in his class is your way of hiding the true issues."
       Psychoanalyzation.  It's very uncomfortable, especially when you know you can't share the true problems.  Silence was key since I had nothing better.
       "Don't want to talk about it?"  Mrs. Parry took a pass out of her desk and started writing my name on it.  "Trey, I can't help you if I don't know what's bothering you.  You know I care about all of my students, and I do my best to help them, but I'm not a miracle worker.  I can't solve a problem that I don't know about."
       "Where are you sending me?  Back to his class?  I can't go back there."
       "You can't stay here if you won't talk to me."
       "I'm just dealing with a lot of stress right now.  And I walked into the classroom, feeling good about class for the first time in a long time.  But no one was there.  Then I remembered we were supposed to go to the computer lab.  So I ran there.  Instead of letting me slide, or talking to me after class, Mr. Walker made a fool of me in front of the whole class."
       "Maybe you're misinterpreting what he said?"
       "He asked if I fell asleep in my last class.  Then, when I told him I didn't have my project he asked me what I care about now a days and if I loved biology so much that I wanted to repeat it, because that's what I was showing him."
       "Maybe he's concerned but shows it in a different way than you expected?"
       "He's not concerned."
       "Trey, all of your teachers are concerned.  So is Coach."
       Coach.  The one person I could count on.  The best teacher I’d ever had and the reason I was so devoted to swimming.  At least until my world changed.
       Mrs. Parry watched my reaction as her statement sank in.  "Trey, you quit swimming, your grades dropped, you're talking back to your teachers, and you're not getting along with your friends.  All of that coming from a boy that was always concerned about his grades, lived to swim, was respectful, and extremely popular.  Trey, I’m worried.  And I think that if you're not willing to talk to me one on one, we need to call your parents and teachers together for a conference."
       That's all I needed to hear.  Things were bad now.  My parents were going to flip when they found out that the school wanted to have a conference.  I asked Mrs. Parry to send me to the nurse so I could lie down for a while because I had a headache—a lie but it worked.
       After resting for a short period of time, I convinced the nurse that I was ready to go back to class and I managed to make it through the rest of the day with no other problems.  At least until the end of the school day bell sounded and I was directed to the main office by my English teacher.
       Mom and Dad sat in the conference room—Mom looked thoroughly upset and Dad seemed annoyed—when I entered.  I took a seat next to Mom and she placed her hand on mine that rested on the wooden table.  "We're here for you," she said—though I didn't believe that was true.  A few minutes later, Mrs. Parry joined us with Mr. Walker and Mr. Tull—the assistant principal.
         Mrs. Parry began, "This conference was called because all of us at this table are concerned about Trey.  He quit the swim team, his grades dropped, he's been disrespectful to the teachers—Mr.Walker in particular—and his peers have found it hard to talk to him.  Even when a student shows one of those signs a red flag goes up.  However, the fact that Trey is demonstrating all of those behaviors has us looking for a cause and trying to help him."
       "Is there anything you'd like to say, Trey?" Mr. Tull asked.
       All eyes focused on me.  My heart burst open and tears formed in my eyes.  I swallowed hard to fight off the urge to cry.  Crying wouldn't help me in any way.  But telling them how I felt, even if I spared the details, might get them off my case.
       "My world is falling apart," my voice shook and cracked.  I cleared my throat.
       "Can you clarify that for us?" Mrs. Parry asked, true concern in her voice.
       I sighed.  "Let's see, I found out I was adopted and that no one knows who my biological parents are.  Everyone seemed to think I was crazy when I shouted about a fire in the pool during the swim meet.  And, even though I was cleared by a doctor, everyone still looks at me funny.  They can't attribute it to the pressure I was under.  And to top it off, Grandpa Atlas is dying."  A tear ran down each cheek and I wiped them away.
       Mom sniffled and wiped tears from her face as well.  "He's going through a lot," she supported me.  "And it doesn't seem like he's getting the support he needs here or at home.  We need to step up to help him as much as we can."
       "What are you thinking?" Mr. Tull asked her.
       Mom looked at Dad.  He shook his head, but not as a directive.  It was more like he knew she was going to say it and that he couldn't stop her, but he didn't like it.  Mom wiped more tears away, "We're going to pull Trey out of school and home school him."


       Buildings rushed by as Dad guided the SUV from the school to the hospital.  My head rested against the back seat of the vehicle.  Shock to my system remained.  We're going to pull Trey out of school and home school him.  That decision was stated before it was even discussed with me.  Not that I disagreed.  In fact, I thought it was a good start to solving all of my problems.  If I was home schooled, I could go to Atlantis whenever I wanted.  And when I came back, I could make sure I got all of my schoolwork done.  Sort of like the young celebrities.
       We'd been driving a few minutes wordlessly.  I loved the decision but I didn't want to talk to my parents at the moment.  It seemed like Mom was starting to understand the pressure I faced but I didn't think she was quite at the full realization yet.  So what would we talk about?
       Mom broke the silence first, which I guessed would be the case.  "So what do you think, Trey?"
       "I think it makes a lot of sense," I told her.  "It certainly frees me up to go to Atlantis when needed."
       "Well this whole situation, while hard on you, really helped the process.  Mr. Tull took me to complete the paperwork necessary while you were with Mrs. Parry at the end of the conference.  So as of now, you're officially being home schooled."  Mom's eyes locked on the side of Dad's face.  Silent the entire time, I knew he had a lot he wasn't saying.
       "So any word on how Grandpa's doing today?" I asked to get out of the awkward situation.
       "They were running some tests today," Mom said.  "Hopefully, we'll get some answers when we get there."
       Grandpa wasn't in his room when we got there.  The bed was empty and neatly arranged.  "I'll find out where he is," Dad said on his way out of the room.  I went to the windowsill and scooted up onto the ledge.  Six floors up, the streets seemed as far away as Atlantis as my mind focused on trying go figure out what my next step needed to be.
       "He's been moved to ICU," Dad told us when he came back to the room.
       "What?!" Mom gasped, her hands went straight to her mouth.
       "He took a turn for the worse," Dad said.  "They're not sure what caused it but his heart and lungs started failing." 
        The white walls, floor, and ceiling seemed to drown us in their expanses as we went back to the elevator.  "They stabilized him now but they're not sure if it's going to last.  Said he's very fragile."
       "No one called us?" Mom said, half stating and half questioning.
       "They said they called the house but no one answered.  They apparently tried my cell phone but it didn't ring because I turned it off while I was in a meeting earlier and left it off for the conference."
       The second floor was well monitored.  Large, automatic doors only opened for people buzzed in by a nurse.  Dad buzzed in and told them who we were.  Static came took over for a second and then the speaker turned silent.  We waited, not sure what had happened.  Within a minute, a nurse came through the doors.
       She met us with a smile.  "Good afternoon."
       "We would like to see my father," Dad told her.
       "He needs to rest.  Doctor's orders are that visitors are not to be allowed in today."
       "This is ridiculous," Dad said.
       "I'm sorry but it's for the best of the patient."
       "I'd like to speak to his doctor," Dad looked nervously upset.
       The nurse smiled again.  "I can call for him but you'll need to have a seat in the waiting room over there.  I'll see if he'll come talk with you."
       "Thank you," Mom said before Dad could respond.  She took Dad's hand and led him to the waiting area while the nurse disappeared behind the doors to the ICU.
       A small room filled with blue chairs and tables with magazines was where we ended up.  Two families already filled up half of the chairs.  Four small kids played with toys on the floor, yelling and carrying on.  I couldn't stay there.  There was no point since I couldn't see Grandpa anyway.
       "I'm gonna start walking," I told my parents.  "I'll see if I can meet up with Coal, Ashley, and Jess.  I wanna let them know what happened today."
       "Be careful," Mom replied.  Dad said nothing.
       "Call me if you hear anything," I said and then left the hospital.

    The message on my cell phone was the last thing I needed to hear.  I had turned my phone on for the first time since school to hear Jess' voice, crying and sniffling, as she poured her heart into my voice mail.  "I'm sorry Trey but I don't think it can work out with you hiding part of your life from me.  You scared me in biology today.  I hope you're okay but this can't continue.  I can't see you anymore.  I'll talk to you at some point but I need my space right now.  Please don't call me back."
       The cell phone felt awkward in my pocket.  A constant reminder of the message I’d just heard.  As much as her breaking up with me hurt, it was also a good thing because it was one less thing I had to leave behind when I went to Atlantis.  I just wished she'd talked to me in person instead of leaving me a message.
       The walk home was a blur after that.  As I lay on my bed, I couldn't even believe I'd made it home.  My mind raced with the day's events and didn't focus on where I was going or what I was doing.  Amazing that I didn't get hit by a car or get lost.  I guess instinct counted for something.
       But I didn't want to eat or move.  I just lay in bed.  Didn't cry.  Wasn't mad.  Just indifferent to the world.  So much had happened in a matter of weeks that my mind didn't even process emotion.  It took the easier way out, the way that required less energy; and that was to just try to ignore everything going on around me.  That worked for a couple of hours.  And then I fell asleep.

Echinodea on The Bookshelf Review's Top 10 Most Anticipated Books of 2013

I'm so honored that Echinodea (The Second Book of the Atlantis Revolution) was chosen as one of the Top 10 Most Anticipated Books of 2013 over at The Bookshelf Review.  And it's included with some really great company on the list!!  I love when I find out how much my books mean to people and how much they can't wait for the sequels.  It really kicks me into gear to keep writing and stay focused on the tasks at hand.  I needed that at the moment since I'm finishing the editing of Echinodea and writing Medousa.

A BIG THANKS to Michael over at The Bookshelf Review for continuing to promote The Atlantis Revolution!!! 

Please check out his awesome blog and subscribe to it.  I check in at least once a week to keep up with all the new books/reviews he posts about.  The Bookshelf Review.

Limited Time--Hippocampus Discounted Prices

 Get the eBook of Hippocampus (The First Book of the Atlantis Revolution) for just $0.99.  Hurry, the sale price ends on Tuesday!
eBook for nook (B&N)
eBook for kindle (Amazon)

 You can also get the paperback of Hippocampus with a discount of 30% off from  US Only. Valid Nov. 23-27. Use code DELIRITAS in all caps. One use per account.
Buy Paperback Here

Happy Thanksgiving!!

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone! I'm thankful for a lot this year. Pretty big things happened for Me this year in terms of my writing and teaching careers. It's so nice to be able to spend my life doing things I love. I'm also thankful that my friends and family are healthy. Grammy battled cancer and won. I moved into a house that I love and enjoy making my own.

Today I'm spending Thanksgiving with Grammy, Mom, my brother, my uncle, aunt, and cousin. Looking forward to great food and quality time with the family. I hope everyone has a great day!

On a side note--I'm also thankful for the break from school because I can get in some much needed editing/writing time.  

Author Interview with Word to Dreams

I recently did an interview with Word to Dreams Blog where I talked about what makes a great story, The Atlantis Revolution, how tough it is to get published, my writing schedule/method, and more.  Head over and check out the interview

Life Redefined (Echinodea--Chapter Two)

      "Trey."  Aerian's voice floated on the air.  But it wasn't her voice that had my attention.  It was her body standing in front of me that held my mind hostage.  The white cloth covered her the way it was made to, but it teased just enough to excite my imagination.  Her long, black hair flowed in the breeze, which also carried her sweet scent.
       "Trey."  She touched my shoulder and rubbed it.  Electricity flowed through my veins like blood, stimulating my nerves.  Then she started to shake me.
       "Trey."  The shaking grew stronger.
       "Stop," I said.
       Aerian's voice faded and light took her image away.

       "Trey."  A girl's voice, not Aerian's, called.  White tiles above me matched the color of Aerian's clothes.  I lowered my head and looked forward.  A chalkboard.  Desks with teenagers surrounded me.  Some of the students smiled at me.  Some of them looked at me like I was the biggest fool around.
       "Trey, you fell asleep," Jessica told me.  Her green eyes met mine with concern.  "The teacher called you three times."
       I straightened up and looked around.  Mr. Walker, my biology teacher, stared at me with that look that almost all teachers have.  The one that looks like it could kill you.  It's so effective; they have to practice it in the mirror over and over to get it right.
       "Mr. Atlas," he walked toward my desk.  "Can you tell me what I just said?"
       Of course I couldn't; but he already knew that.  And I bet the nervousness showed in my ocean blue eyes.  "You said that sleeping is an important biological function and sometimes you can't stop it."  All eyes swerved to him.
       "You can find out what I said in detention this afternoon," Mr. Walker told me.  The bell rang and he switched out of the disciplinarian role as though he was never in it.  "Read chapter eighteen tonight."  I ran my hand through my layered blond hair in frustration and then stood up.  "And don't forget to meet me in the computer lab with your completed projects tomorrow."
       Jessica fixed her red hair as I packed my biology book and binder in my backpack.  We met Coal in the hallway and he walked with us to the cafeteria for lunch.  After getting food, we sat down at a table where Ashley and Sara already sat.  Coal sat next to Sara, his girlfriend.  I sat across from Coal, in between Ashley and Jessica.  It was awkward at times because Jessica was my girlfriend but Ashley was one of my best friends, with Coal being the other.
       Unlike with Coal, I had a lot in common with Ashley.  We were both athletes, cared about looking our best, and tried to present a sense of style that worked for us.  In fact, because we had so much in common, I always had a feeling that Ashley and I could date.  The only thing stopping us was the fact that I didn't want to ruin our friendship.
       But we didn't have to date for the friendship to be damaged.  When I started dating Jessica, it put a strain on my friendship with Ashley.  We discussed it many times in the past few weeks and it seemed like we had it smoothed over.  For now.
       "Trey fell asleep in biology class," Coal announced to everyone at the table.  His dark eyes watched my reaction carefully.  I wanted to lash out at him for announcing it to the world.  I wanted to call him Connor, his real name, which he hated with a passion.  Though I couldn’t deny that the nickname suited his dark eyes, rough face, and black hair.
       I decided that I didn't want to make a huge scene about him calling me out but I also didn't want to ignore it.  "Thanks, Coal.  Like it wasn't embarrassing enough."
       "What's going on with you?" Jessica asked.  "You used to be a top student and athlete.  In the past few weeks, you've been falling asleep in classes, your grades are dropping, and you're not even swimming anymore.  Is it me?"
       "No," I said and then took a bite of my pizza.  I looked around the cafeteria, trying to take the focus off myself.  Table after table was filled with laughter and discussion.  Typical high school students living their lives and worrying about who was most popular, who was dating who, and how they were going to pass their next test.  That's what the issue was.  Everyone around me still had their normal lives and had nothing major to worry about.  I had so much responsibility to handle and I was finding it very difficult to manage.
       "Well it started right around the time you started dating me," Jessica said.
       Ashley and Coal looked at me.  They knew the truth.  It did start when I started dating Jessica.  But it had nothing to do with her.  It was because, just before I asked Jessica out, I became the prince of Atlantis, fought off the Knights of Abyss, and found out I was adopted.  I also watched the man I thought was my grandfather fight for his life in the hospital.  An entire population waited for me to lead them into the future and looked to me to keep them safe from another attack by the Knights of the Abyss.  And sooner, rather than later, I was going to have to go back to Atlantis and do my job.  I couldn't avoid it forever, even if I wanted to.  Though I didn't really want to avoid it forever because Atlantis was a part of me, my birthplace.  I just wasn't ready to deal with leading the island yet.
       "It's just a coincidence," I told Jessica.  No one could know about Atlantis, besides my family and two best friends.  They were the only ones I trusted.  I had to keep it secret so that it would remain safe from the outside world.  Atlantis had it's own problems within its boundaries.  I didn't need to add more by revealing that it existed.
       "Trey has a lot going on in his life right now," Ashley said.  Jessica's eyes shot daggers at Ashley.  I tensed with the anticipation of whether Ashley would disclose the information I wanted to protect.
       "And it sounds like he tells you more than he tells me," Jessica stood up and fixed her clothes.  She looked at me.  "Call me later."  Without another word, or time for me to respond, she left the cafeteria.
       "Thanks, Ashley," I said.  "Make my life even more difficult."  I took a sip of milk without looking at her.
       "I was trying to help," she said.
       "Yeah, well, you didn't," I replied.  "Now she's mad at me."
       "You know what, Trey," Ashley stood up in a huff.  "I'm tired of this.  I know your life fell apart but you don't have to go around feeling sorry for yourself.  If you really think that you don't belong here, then go.  No one's stopping you!"  She stormed off.
       I took another bite of pizza and waited for Coal or Sara to say something.  They didn't.  Deep down, I was glad they didn't try to pick sides.  I needed to figure out how to balance my new life and that wasn't going to happen over night.


       The steady rhythm of water beating off my body helped me relax and allowed my mind to clear up a little bit.  It was needed.  I didn't even remember what happened during the rest of the school day.  A dense fog had settled in my brain and clogged up my consciousness.  I slept, or day dreamt, through my afternoon classes. 
    After school, I served my detention for Mr. Walker.  He talked to me about his concern for the change in my grades and behavior.  I tuned him out and just agreed with him so it would be painless.  I went to the gym and did my normal routine before heading home and jumping in the shower.
       I'd hoped that I would connect with Aerian through the water but that wasn't happening.  I didn't have a lot of time to waste anyway; I had to meet Jessica for dinner in an hour.  I called her to make sure she was ok since lunch didn't go smoothly.  She had calmed down but I asked her to dinner to make it even better.
       I ended my shower, toweled off, dressed in my most expensive jeans and polo shirt, and headed downstairs.  Mom was working on her laptop at the kitchen table.  "Hey," I said as I went to get my shoes, which sat on the floor next to the back door.
       "Where're you going?" Mom asked.
       "I'm having dinner with Jess."  I sat on a chair at the table and started putting my shoes on.
       "Still didn't hear anything from Atlantis?" she questioned.  Mom was as interested in the island as I was.  As an archeologist, she couldn't hide her fascination with ancient peoples and cities.
       "Aren't you worried that something's wrong?"
       "No."  I finished tying my shoes and stood up.
       "Are you going to Atlantis soon?"
       "I don't know."  I started toward the door.
       Mom stood up and moved to follow me.  "Trey, wait!"
       "I have to go; I'm going to be late."  I opened the door.
       Mom put a hand on my shoulder and pulled me away from the door.  Then she pushed the door closed.  This wasn't good.  She wanted to talk and I didn't.  "Mom, I have to..."
       "No, Trey," she cut me off.  "I need to talk to you.  You're scaring me."
       I rolled my eyes at her.
       "Don't do that," she reprimanded me.  "You know what I mean.  You're not the same."
       I went to the table and sat down.  "Fine let's talk."  I decided that it didn't matter if I was late to dinner.  Jess was already upset with me.  "Isn't it obvious why I'm different?  I'm dealing with a lot right now.  I was told I was adopted, that I was from an island that wasn't supposed to exist, and that I'm now the ruler of said island.  Grandpa is dying.  And none of my friends or family seems to think any of that is worth being upset about.  That is if I can still consider my family my family."
       Mom joined me at the table.  "You're not alone, Trey."
       "Really?  Then tell me who's with me because it doesn't seem like anyone cares."
       "I care."
       "You care because you’re my mother," I told her.  I really wanted to say that if she cared she wouldn't have hid the fact that I was adopted from me but I didn't want to argue and I knew that wasn’t a fair statement.  She did what she felt was the best thing for me.  And even though I didn't agree that it was the best thing, I knew why she hid it for so long.
       "What about Coal and Ashley?" she asked.
       "They're trying to act like everything is normal.
       "You have Jess."
       "Jess is upset with me because I won't tell her what's wrong with me.  She thinks it's her."
       Mom smiled.  "So tell her the truth.  Girls just want to know the truth."
       "I can't tell her about Atlantis.  I can't tell anyone.  I shouldn't have even told Coal and Ashley.  Don't you understand?  Atlantis has enough problems within its own boundaries.  It doesn't need to deal with people from the outside causing issues."
       "But you're the one dealing with Atlantis' issues anyway."
       "Exactly the point!  I don't need anything else to worry about."
       "Well this isn't good for you.  You gave up swimming, you're grades are dropping, and you don't let anyone help you."
       "None of you understand.  You can't help me.  I'm on my own."  I got up from the table and pushed the chair in.  Without saying another word, I stormed out the back door.


       I met Jessica at the Italian restaurant.  She already sat at a table, dressed in a skirt and blouse.  She looked great but she didn't look happy.  "You're late," she said as I sat down.
       "I was talking with my Mom," I told her.  I picked up the menu and perused the pages.  I guess I hoped it would avoid the uncomfortable conversations that I knew were bound to happen.
       "Trey, look at me," Jessica said.  I spent a few more seconds staring into the menu and then placed it flat on the table.  My eyes met hers.  "Trey, something's wrong and I don't even know what it is.  I want to help you but I can't.  And if I'm going to be your girlfriend, I need you to be honest with me."
       I looked away.
       "It's not that I don't want to be honest with you," I said, meeting her eyes again.  "It's just that I can't.  I can't share some things about my life."
       "But I thought I was sharing your life?  Don't I deserve to have the full thing?"
       "Of course you do.  But there's just something I can't share.  I know you don't understand but I can't do anything about it."
       "Does Coal know?  How 'bout Ashley?"  Her words stabbed me in the chest.  I looked away again.  "If they know, why can't you tell me?  Don't I mean that much to you?"
       The young waitress in black pants and a white shirt stopped at our table and asked if we were ready to order.  The brown haired girl used her eyes to flirt with me but I wasn’t even remotely receptive.  Not only was I sitting with my girlfriend but I also had way too many other things to worry about.  We ordered drinks and our dinners and then she disappeared.  I was thankful for the interruption but Jess's silence reminded me of the question she posed just minutes ago.
       Don't I mean that much to you?  I had to be careful about how I answered that question.  Of course she meant a lot to me but unfortunately it was different than Ashley or Coal, who I knew all my life.  Girls just want to know the truth.
       "You mean a lot to me," I said.
       "So then what's the problem?
       "It's just that I've known Coal and Ashley my whole life.  I just met you.  I mean, I can tell them secrets that I know they won't share because there's a really good chance they'll be my friends the rest of my life."
       "And what am I?  A passing fling?"
       "No.  I mean...I don't know.”  I thought about what to say for a few moments.  “How do we know if we'll be together forever?  This thing that's bothering me is the kind of secret that can change lives if it gets out.  It can change the world.  And if you and I have issues and we break up, I don't want to worry that you're going to share it with people in revenge."
       "So you don't trust me," she said matter of factly.
       That was the right answer but I knew better than to agree with it.  "It's not that.  It's just that I don't know you well enough yet.  I'm sure in time I'll be able to share this piece of my life with you.  I just think it's too early in our relationship."
       Her demeanor changed, like she finally understood what I was saying.  "I guess I can accept that."  I breathed a sigh of relief.  "But I hope that one day you'll feel comfortable enough with me to share your deepest secrets."
       "And one day I hope to be."  I took her hand in mine and smiled.  "Jess, I love spending time with you.  You mean a lot to me and I'm glad I have you in my life.  And I'm sorry I ever made you feel like that wasn't true."
       The waitress delivered our drinks and tried another round of flirting that I ignored.  We talked about school while we waited for our dinners.  Jess filled me in on all of the gossip I missed while I was locked away in my own subconscious, as she called it.  By the time our food was delivered, I had been caught up on all of the drama between the quarterback of the football team and the head basketball player, who apparently were fighting over the captain of the cheerleading squad.
       We ate while Jess talked about how there was a list of all of the boys and their best attributes on one of the stalls in the girls’ bathroom.  She said that my name was at the top of most attribute lists.  I knew that she was trying to make conversation without facing the reality of what was happening to my life.  Because, whether she knew it or not, I knew exactly what conversations were taking place at the high school. 
    The biggest gossip was about how the best athlete from our high school, the top swimmer in the state, fell from grace.  About how the hottest guy in the school was having a life crisis and breaking down.  And all of the rumors that surrounded that fact were not very flattering to my self-esteem.  Everyone had a theory and none of them were even remotely close to the real situation.  But how could they be?  No one even knew that Atlantis existed.  And no one could ever know.  That's where my dilemma was and where it would remain.


       After dinner, I walked Jess to her car and opened the driver's door for her.  She twirled around to face me and smiled.  "Thanks for a great dinner," she said.  She leaned toward me and kissed my lips for a brief second.  "And as much as I wish you’d tell me more, thank you for at least being as honest as you could."  She kissed me again.
       When she pulled away, I replied, "thank you for understanding."  And then I kissed her, more passionately than she had kissed me.  My hands found their way to her waist and I pulled her close.  Aerian's image found its way to the inside of my eyelids as Jess and I kissed.  In that moment, I felt the best I had in a long time.
       She pulled away and used her hands to take mine off her waist.  "I should go before this gets serious."  She laughed nervously.
    "Yeah."  That was all I could say. 
    She climbed into her car and I closed the door for her.  And then she was gone, the taillights down the road.  My problems rushed back, colliding with my brain like two runaway freight trains.  I still had an island to lead and protect.  Then there was the fact that none of my relationships were remotely close to the way they had been before Atlantis.  And of course Aerian was a problem.  I was dating Jess but, as we kissed, I imagined the sorceress.  There were too many unknowns and uncertainties.
       The thoughts reorganized in my head.  I still needed to go see my grandfather, who wasn't really my grandfather.  I needed to see how he was doing and I had to hope he had information about Atlantis and my life there that would be valuable to me.  But seeing him would, more likely than not, give me more stress and frustration because I wouldn't be sure about his health.


       It took me about twenty minutes to walk to the hospital.  The nurse at the desk on Grandpa's floor just smiled at me.  I visited every night since I returned from Atlantis so all of the nurses and doctors knew me well.  Grandpa slept peacefully so I positioned myself in the chair across from his bed.
       The man in the bed was the only grandparent I ever knew.  The problem was, the man in the bed wasn't my real grandfather.  He was actually a sorcerer from Atlantis that was responsible for keeping me alive.  He brought me to Miami when I was just a baby and convinced my parents to adopt me.  They couldn't have a baby of their own so they agreed to raise me but they vowed that they wouldn't tell me the truth about my life.
       That plan worked until I started hearing screams in the water while I was swimming.  And then when Grandpa gave me my necklace, the one I never remove from my neck---not that it mattered because the magical jewel always returns to its owner--- I started to have visions of a woman in trouble.  That's when he revealed everything about my true life to me.  That's when my world fell apart.
       The man in front of me breathed heavily, even though he appeared to be in a deep sleep.  His small, skinny frame made him look in worse condition than he really was, or at least worse than I thought he was.  Maybe I just wouldn't accept how poor his health was.  Even though he wasn't my biological grandfather like I once thought, he still meant a lot to me.  After all, he was part of my life from the beginning.  In fact, he was my one true link to Atlantis and my biological parents.
       I moved to the bedside and took his hand in mine.  It was cold and gray.  The monitors beeped periodically, reminding me to watch his vitals to make sure they were where they should be.  They were, but only because of the medication.  In fact, the medication was also the reason he was always sleeping.  Whenever he woke up, he wanted to know about Atlantis.  Everyday since I came back from Atlantis, he asked me to share my adventure with him.  I think he forgot it from one day to the next.  While I hoped that he would one day fill me in on my biological parents and my connection to Atlantis, he didn't remember anything.  The more I questioned, the more upset he got.  He wanted to help me but couldn't.
       His eyes opened with a start and I gently shushed him to keep him calm.  His heart rate escalated.  "Grandpa," I said softly.  "I'm here.  It's alright."
       His voice was weak.  "Trey."
       "I'm here," I reassured him.
       "Trey.  How was Atlantis?"
       As much as I hated recapping my adventures in Atlantis everyday--bringing back the source of my problems--I didn't want to disappoint Grandpa.  Especially because of the condition he was in.  So I recapped it again.  How I met Oaren and his family and they helped me get some clothes and a map.  The encounter with the Knights in the capitol city, the soldier---Ries---saving Oaren and me from the attack.  Oaren's parents being called traitors and their murder.  Ries and the Knights meeting us in the woods and helping us save Aerian.  Training at the base and making the plan to defeat the Knights.  The battle, my encounter with the sorceress---how she turned dirt into wasps---and our victory.  My speech to the Atlanteans, the seahorse tattoo I have on my left biceps, and the incredible palace that now belonged to me.
       As I finished my recap, I realized I had a lot to be thankful for and to be proud of.  But that still didn't make up for all of the problems of balancing my life at home and my royalty in Atlantis.
       "Trey," Grandpa whispered, his grasp on my hand tightening.  "There's something I need to tell you.  Something that will make things clearer but might also cause some more frustration for you."  Great.  More frustration.  Just what I needed.  "It's about your family; your biological family.  You’re a royal because..."
       "I'm sorry, Trey, but you're going to have to leave now," the nurse that smiled at me from the desk entered the room.  "Visiting hours are over, honey."
       Grandpa was just about to tell me something crucial about my real parents.  Something that might help me figure out who they were.  Who I am.  And now I had to leave.
       "Grandpa," I said, "save this until tomorrow.  I want to hear the rest of your story when I come to visit."  I patted his hand with my hand that wasn’t already clenched in his.  "Good night."
       "Good night," he replied as he released my hand.  I left the hospital room with my stomach in knots.  The information I needed had been seconds away from my ears but it vanished.  And I probably wouldn't ever hear it again because, even though I said to save the story for tomorrow, Grandpa would probably forget we even had that conversation.  He'd forget all about the information he was about to share.  And I'd be right back to square one, except I knew that he had the information I needed.

And the Title for the Third Book of the Atlantis Revolution is...

Did you know that Hippocampus was originally titled Trey Atlas and the Key to the Kingdom?  Yeah, I know, Hippocampus is better. 

While I was promoting Trey Atlas and the Key to the Kingdom on Textnovel and Inkpop in 2010, I realized that the title just wasn't what I wanted it to be.  So I picked the symbol right out of the story--Hippocampus, the Atlantean symbol of royalty.  And it suits the first book in more ways than one. 

From there, I decided on the titles for the second and third book, both of which stay true to the format of scientific names for marine animals.  They also represent the classes in the Atlantean society.  While I don't want to give anything away, Echinodea represents two different aspects of the second book.

There's a lot of thought behind the titles of The Atlantis Revolution and anyone who reads the books will surely see how well they work.  In fact, the titles--and how important they are--are one of the major reasons my agent loves The Atlantis Revolution.  Just wait until you get to connect the title Echinodea with the story inside the book.  I think you'll find it to have a huge impact on the series--and probably you and your need for book 3. 

That being said, I want you to know the title of the third (and final) book of The Atlantis Revolution.  This way I can use it when I refer to my progress over the next few months.  And you'd find out when the reviewers start reading Echinodea in a few weeks anyway.  This book had 3 different titles since I started official work on the series in 2009, and I finally settled on the one now being revealed.  And like it's predecessors, it works for numerous reasons. 

So drum roll please...
The title of the third and final book of the Atlantis Revolution is....


Echinodea--Kindle Publishing Date 3 Months Earlier!

Echinodea (The Second Book of the Atlantis Revolution) will be available via Amazon for Kindle on January 1, 2013.  That's 3 months earlier than it's official release date for all formats (April 2, 2013).  This is exciting news!  And if you don't have a Kindle, remember you can read Kindle books on your computer, ipad, ipod, iphone, etc. 

Stay tuned for more!!

Nychta Epithesi (Echinodea--Chapter One)

     Flashes of yellow light streaked across the black sky.  The explosion rocked the city—ancient marble buildings interspersed with modern day skyscrapers.  Four figures, dark and quick, scrambled out from under a pier along the river and ran towards a house—dimly lit and falling apart.
       Front and center of the group was a girl—in her late teens—dressed in a dark robe, her black hair in a pony tail.  The boy behind her was taller than her but appeared to be younger by a few years.  Dressed in a tunic the color of sand, which matched the color of his layered hair, the boy ran to her side.  He carried a sword and a shield.  Behind them, two men, one considerably older than the other, followed in tunics of ocean blue mixed with seaweed green.  Their upper bodies were covered with metal armor and they carried swords.  The younger of the two soldiers also carried a bow and quiver of arrows on his shoulder.
       "Anoigo," the girl yelled, throwing her hands forward.  Sky-blue light blasted through the door of the house.  She paused, along with the boy, and waited for the two soldiers to enter first.  Metal met metal—while the sky outside flashed to near daylight and opened up with a downpour—as the soldiers faced resistance from members of the Knights of the Abyss.  Another crack of thunder shook the city.
       Purple light illuminated every window in the house as the girl led the boy into the assault.  The oldest soldier fought off sword attacks, sweat glistening on his dark hair--not quite black but darker than brown—as he started giving orders.  "Aerian," he said, trying to meet eyes with the girl, "follow Troy upstairs.  Clear the area.  Oaren, you stay with me."
       Aerian followed the younger soldier, Troy, up the steps.  "Frasso," Aerian threw grey light to the bottom of the stairs behind them—the Knights that followed walked into an invisible block and couldn't follow them anymore.
       The bedrooms were dark as they passed by like shadows.  Purple light erupted through the hallways and Aerian opened her arms—like she was giving the light a hug—absorbing it into her body.  Seconds later, with the clap of her hands, the light exploded out, seeking it's Master.
       "Dark magicians are here," Aerian said.  "Just as I expected."
       "Confirms our theory of the Knights working with them," Troy replied.
       "We knew that when we recaptured the royal grounds a few weeks ago.  However, this does tell us that the Knights are more organized than expected.  Apparently, we didn't dismantle their unity as much as we had thought.  We will have to let Trey know."
       Continuing down the hallway, they stepped over bodies of dark magicians on the floor—obvious victims of the purple light that Aerian sent back at them.  "Is it all clear?" Troy asked.
       Aerian guided her mind waves through the upper floor of the house.  "Zito," she said to herself.  Like sonar, the waves bounced back from three different locations.  "Three of them," she whispered.  "Two in the room straight ahead and one in the room to the right."
       "I will take the two in the room ahead," Troy forged past her.
        Troy kicked in the door, put his sword out in front of him and entered the room.  Purple flashed before Aerian's eyes.  Not light this time, but robes.  An old man trying to sneak up behind Troy.  Throwing her hands forward, she guided white light into the back of the man's head.  She twisted her wrists, captured his yell before it escaped his mouth, and watched him collapse.
       Green light flashed in the room.  Aerian gasped and went straight for where Troy was.   The young soldier, who had captured her attention just by being in her presence, was successfully parrying the attacks of one Knight and one magician.  Aerian watched in awe, a smile creeping across her face.  Perfect, fluid-like movements.  A charge ran through her body.  Desire was the only thing that came to mind when she tried to figure out what led to the feeling.
       A high-pitched gasp broke through the air—Troy’s sword had pierced the Knight's chest.  A woman. 
      The magician lifted his arms but Aerian countered whatever attack he was going to make by sending a gust of lethally hot wind.  The body deflated—the air being sucked out of his lungs by the heat—in a heap of purple cloth.
       "A woman," Troy said as he motioned to the Knight's body on the wooden floor in front of them.
       "I noticed."  Aerian paused.  It was unprecedented for the Knights to accept women into their ranks.  Their group was thousands of years old and was thought to practice the ancient rituals.  Unlike the Atlantean military, which allowed women to join as long as anyone living could remember.
       "Guess they're changing their membership policies," Troy said.  His forehead glistened with sweat.  Aerian tried not to stare at his handsome features and eyes---the color of leaves.  Mixed thoughts created an uneasy feeling.  Confusion.  Guilt.  Grief.  Her boyfriend—Jedrick—was murdered by the Knights just weeks prior.  How could she even think about another guy already?  In addition, there was Trey—who seemed to have an interest in her.
       She thought Trey was attractive, as all royals were, but there was something different about Troy.  A certain ruggedness to him made him more appealing than Trey.  Not that she wasn't interested in Trey—he was nice and cute, not to mention the prince.  In fact, she didn't know what she felt and didn't really want to try to balance her feelings if she didn't have to.  With Trey being gone, that was easier.  Plus, she had no idea how either of the guys felt about her—maybe she was imagining Trey's interest in her. 
       "About time," was all she could say.  She hoped the Troy didn't pick up on the pause.


       Oaren watched a blur of silver, blue, and green as Ries swung his sword, stabbed, and repeated in a dance-like fashion.  Knight after Knight fell to the blade.  Three Knights charged Ries and he fought to maintain control.  Fearing for Ries’ life, Oaren moved in to help.
       He saw the navy cloth before the sword.  A Knight slashed a sword at him.  Instinct taking over, Oaren put his shield up just in enough time to block the attack.  Just that fast, the sword came back at him.  The shield deflected it again and he parried his sword the way Troy had taught him.  The Knight deflected Oaren's attack and then pushed the sword forward, aiming for Oaren's chest.  He couldn't get his shield or sword up in time to block it so instead, used his arms though it would do no good.
       "Periblima!"  The tip of the sword stopped less than an inch from his chest.  The Knight's face was in shock.  Oaren saw Aerian with her hand extended toward him—her spell had protected him.  Troy engaged the Knight in a sword fight while Ries battled the last of his enemies.
       "Zito," Aerian said out loud, a look of concentration on her face.  Waves of sound spread out, none of them bouncing back.  By the time she surveyed the whole house, the last two Knights were dead.  Ries' stance stayed defensive, ready for attack.  Troy searched the room, like an owl, to ensure no enemies remained.
       "It is clear," Aerian told them.  "I searched the entire house."  Both soldiers sheathed their swords.
       Sweating and breathing heavy, Troy and Ries took a moment to regain their bearings.  Oaren put his sword away and said, "That was fun!"  The look on his face said the opposite.
       "A blast," Ries replied.  With no emotion in his voice, it was impossible to tell if he was being sarcastic.
       "Do you want to search the other houses?" Troy asked Ries.
       "I want to inspect this one first," the older man said.
       "I will go outside and use the spell to search the area," Aerian told them.
       "I am going with you," Troy said, removing his sword from the scabbard.  Aerian didn't feel like she needed protection but she didn't want to refuse the opportunity to be alone with Troy.  Besides, her instinct told her that letting Troy protect her would be a good thing.  Being a soldier, he probably felt the need to protect women and that might be the key to signaling that she was interested in him.  By the time she came to from her thought session, Troy was already leaving the house.  She quickly followed.
       Ries and Oaren walked the house, looking on hutches, tables, counters and in cabinets.  Oaren wasn't sure what they were looking for but Ries had said "Anything that looks like it might give us clues into the Knights organization and plans."


       "Nothing," Aerian said.
       "Not even civilians?" Troy asked.
       "I am only targeting Knights and dark magicians with the waves.  They all fled but I know there had to be more of them."
       "Our intelligence said that they were gathering in this part of the city.  Our undercover soldiers said they were told this was the place to sign up for the Knights, for citizens and magicians.”
       His eyes met hers causing her heart to flutter.  She thought that Jedrick's and Trey's eyes were beautiful—like the ocean—but Troy's put theirs to shame, at least in her mind.  That thought caused her guilt again.  Maybe that was just it; maybe Trey reminded her too much of Jedrick.
       She glanced around, only avoiding his eye contact.  "Well either the intelligence was wrong or the Knights had some way of escaping."
       Troy sheathed his sword.  "I am guessing the latter."
       Oaren and Ries joined them.  "We found nothing," Oaren said.
       "The area is clear," Aerian informed them.
       "We are thinking that the Knights had an escape route," Troy added.
       "Probably," Ries said.  "At least I hope that was the case because I do not want to have to explain to the Prince that our intelligence was mistaken."
       "The Prince does not even know about this," Troy said
       Aerian's eyes lit up.  Her mind raced; connected with someone.  Someone very distant.  It could only be one person.  She smiled at Troy and said, "Or does he?"

October Writing Challenge

Shannon Delany (author of 13 to Life series) is starting the October Writing Challenge tomorrow. I'm in. I'm trying to hit 1,000 words a day the entire month (for a total of 31,000 words). In the 6 years I've been teaching, I've NEVER been able to hit 1,000 words a day or even 10,000 words a month (during the school year) so this will be a huge task but it's worth attempting. I'll be working on he third book in The Atlantis Revolution and if I meet the goal, I'll be nearly halfway finished with the book by the end of October. I'll keep you updated on the progress (hopefully each day). The first day I'm able to double the goal and hit 2,000 words in a day, I'll celebrate by releasing the title of third book. That's incentive for me because I really want to share the title and incentive for you to encourage me!

Hippocampus is just $0.99 (and a Contest too)!!

To celebrate 6 months until the release of Echinodea (The Second Book of the Atlantis Revolution) goes on sale--4/2/2012--, Hippocampus is now available at Barnes and Noble and Amazon for just $0.99.  This is a great opportunity to read the first book in the YA fantasy trilogy, The Atlantis Revolution. 

Share this information on Facebook, Twitter, websites, blogs, etc. and then come back here and tell me how you shared it.  I'll enter you into a contest to win an eARC of Echinodea.  In fact, I'm giving away 1 eARC of Echinodea for every 5 people that share about Hippocampus being $0.99.  That's really great odds!!  Make sure to comment here, on my facebook, or email me at to tell me how you shared the info so I can enter you in the contest.  Contest ends 11/2/2012. 

Hippocampus is On Sale in Indonesia!!

Mizan, the Indonesian Publisher of Hippocampus,  finished the translation and publication process and put Hippocampus on sale in September 2012.  Below you can see their cover for the book.  I can't wait to see it in print (they're sending me 2 complimentary copies). 

Praise/Reviews for Hippocampus

"Spectacular, adventurous and magical is what sums up this awesome book...this book reminded me of a combination of Harry Potter, Percy Jackson and Eragon and that is saying a lot. Tom Tancin is really an awesome writer who came up with such a great idea for a book. His writing style really fits into this young adult genre and the world that he has created is just fantastic. It is like he has taken many different elements and weaved them together to create an amazing fast paced book. "  5 out of 5 stars  
-The Bookshelf Review

"This book is a full on adventure. I was on the edge of my seat from start to finish.  I could not put it down. I am a woman reaching the age of mmmm 40 and I enjoyed it.  I love a good romance and this was a break from the norm for me but I would gladly take another break." 4.5 out of 5 stars    -Confessions of a Bookaholic Facebook

 "Tom Tancin takes the myth of Atlantis and gives it a modern twist, creating a fresh and exciting adventure story. Action, mystery, magic, adventure and suspense fill the pages of Hippocampus." 4 out of 5 stars    -Treasured Tales for Young Adults

"All I know is how much I cannot wait to read the next book.  ..This story is definitely addicting. I will be eagerly awaiting the sequel."  -All Things Me

"This really seems like book that a teenage boy would love, full of action, adventure and a damsel in distress. Kudos to Tom Tancin for writing a book that hits on a reading population that may be getting overlooked in the current YA trends. Love triangles are cool and all, but maybe not so much from a young teen boys perspective."    -Monique Morgan, author of Pursuer

"It reminds me of the old Indiana Jones movies mixed with Harry Potter and geared towards teens."    -Mel's Book Blog

"Watch out Harry Potter, here comes Trey Atlas. An imaginative beginning of what could become the next YA epic series."
-Kidd1 on

"This is fantastic. It's faintly reminiscent of Percy Jackson, but somehow punchier and more immediate. I definitely think this has got what it takes to take the market by storm. Fabulous work."
-A Knight on

"Great premise for a broad legendary canvas- there's nothing like a lost civilisation to fire the imagination.. The writing is solid, flowing and sharp. the characters are crafted well and people you want to journey with."
-Owen Quinn on

"What great characters, written into a highly imaginative storyline. Very much like the contrast you build between Trey's world and the beginning it makes the crossing over very powerful. Great story well told."
-Famlavan on

"This is a fantastic reworking of ancient themes and modern interests."
-Jane Bain on

"I love the world you've created. Your writing is descriptive, clear, and to the point. Excellent imagination. Being a writer of fantasy/sci fi myself, I try to read and support as many well written ones on this site that I can. I hope this work does well and people give it a chance."
-Natalie Jones on

"It's easy to understand why this is getting strong support from young readers. The swashbuckling Knights take on a sorceress and her love, battling to his death and her escape. Such bitter tragedy leaves so many possibilities for fair Aerian. And then, the plan is added. Brilliant."
-Star Gazer on

"What an original, well-crafted story! You must read a great deal of myth and old-world stories, as much as new-age ones, to combine the two themes to make your great tale. You write everything well, from dialogue to the paragraphs surrounding it / drawing it all together."
-Kevin Wong on

"Your premise is so incredibly unique and your writing is generally strong as well. this is a really clever and original book. you have plenty of great things going for you here. I like your characters, especially Aerian (beautiful name btw) This was a great read."
 -Carrie L McRae on

"Great story! I love the quick pace and all the action."
 -Jason Hewett on

Atlantis Revolution #3 is Officially in Progress!

I finished Echinodea (The Second Book of the Atlantis Revolution) on Friday 8/3/2012.  I passed it off to my mom, who is always the first reader of my books.  I can't wait to hear what she has to say about it.  I'll post her comments when I get them!  I, on the other hand, put Echinodea to the side for now.  I will return to it sometime in September to do numerous edits by myself and with other trusted readers/editors.  By then, I will have fresh eyes for the story. 

But that means I'm ready to start writing my next book.  Which is book #10 for me (I can't believe it) and also happens to be Atlantis Revolution #3 (still untitled to everyone but me).  I'm excited to start writing the 3rd book because it is going to be an exciting one and I can't wait to see how it all plays out and wraps up.  But at the same time, I'm sad that I will be writing "The End" to this trilogy.  The next year worth of work is going to be a mixture of fun, excitement, and sadness/hesitation.  By this time next year, the Atlantis Revolution Trilogy will be completely written and I will be moving on to new things.  I don't know what those things are yet but I'm sure they'll be great.  But that doesn't mean I want to leave Atlantis--and maybe I won't.  :-)

So while you are still spreading the word about Hippocampus, and eagerly waiting (hopefully) for Echinodea, I'll be writing #3.  And I'll do my best to keep you updated on my progress as I go--but I do get very busy once the school year begins so I can't promise.

Echinodea (The Second Book of the Atlantis Revolution) Cover Reveal!

It's officially 8 months until the release of Echinodea (The Second Book of the Atlantis Revolution)--April 2, 2013.  This means that it's time to start promoting the book.  The summary was released last month.  Now, here is the cover:

The cover might be tweaked slightly between now and release day (ex: the quote on the front will probably be replaced with one about this book instead of Hippocampus) but I don't think it will have significant changes.  Make sure to spread the word about the book and add it to your Goodreads shelf!

Post Vacation Update

I'm back from a great, fun, relaxing vacation.  Now I'm getting settled and back to normal.  So here's the first post since returning from vacation.

I made major progress on Echinodea (The Second Book of the Atlantis Revolution). I wrote nearly 15,000 words on the train ride to and from Florida (basically 15,000 words in 2 days)...that's pretty amazing. I have 1 full chapter to write and a few partials to finish...should end up adding close to 10,000 words in all. I WILL finish within a week (but hopefully sooner).

The cover for Echinodea will be revealed REALLY soon--maybe the day I finish writing the book??? ;)

I'm going to be a tease-- I really love the ending of Echinodea but you're going to HATE me for it! It doesn't have anywhere near the closure to the story that Hippocampus did.

I'm already outlining book 3--which does have a title that I'm not sharing yet. I almost let it slip by typing it in place of "book 3" above. Good thing I caught it when I did a read through.

Oh and I still have things to finish/catch up on for Hippocampus for promotions, giveaways, etc.  So if you're waiting on something, I will get to it as soon as possible.  I'm sorry for the wait and thank you for your patience while I was on vacation!

And I'm packing to move and starting to design the rooms for the new house--Atlantean royal palace style (which means researching and purchasing items that fit in the theme of the royal palace ). I move August 31st.

Echinodea (The Second Book of the Atlantis Revolution)

A Magical Lantern That Could Reveal Atlantis...
A Family He Knows Nothing About...
A Secret That Could Steal His Throne

"This is Jocasta," her voice echoed so loud and clear that I was sure the entire city could hear her.  "For those of you who do not already know, I am the most powerful sorceress alive today.  I speak to you on behalf of the Knights of the Abyss.  Today's attack is only the beginning.  If you want safety, consider aligning with the Knights.  Anyone who does not join us is against us.  And if you wish to keep things as you have known them, then you need to put pressure on your Prince.  A revolution is in order."  Her mercury eyes locked on me; poison flowed through my veins.  "Heed this warning," she spat.  "If the Prince does not relinquish his throne, all will be revealed."  

The Knights of the Abyss are still causing chaos in Atlantis.  They threatened that if Trey Atlas doesn't relinquish his throne, they'll light the Echinodea--a magical lantern that could expose the island to the entire world.  But if Trey steps down, the Knights would take over Atlantis and destroy everything it stands for; including erasing Trey's mysterious past.  So there's only one option--get to the Echinodea before the Knights of the Abyss.  

While on their search for the Echinodea, Trey and his Royal Court meet someone who claims to have the information Trey seeks about his biological family.  But the key to the mystery isn't what he hoped it would be.  It turns out that the secret in Trey's blood could steal the very throne he fights to protect.

All Will Be Revealed...April 2, 2013