Saturday, October 24, 2015

Fathers and Demons: Another New Review

At this point in time, Neil Aplin's new 5-star review of Fathers and Demons has appeared only on Smashwords.  I'm hoping he puts it up on Amazon soon.  Here is the review:

       In Fathers and Demons; Glimpses of the Future, Lorinda J. Taylor develops the character of one of her most fascinating protagonists, the Captain Robbie Nikalishin, who despite constant mispronouncements of his surname conquers this as well as the traumatic initial journey into the depths of the galaxy from a previous novel to find himself strong enough to accept the offer of a second mission, whilst at the same time learning more of the nature of the remnants of religiosity in the 28th century, particularly the Jewish culture and faith, interlaced with a generous helping of ruminations on the father-son/mother-son relationships.
       Perhaps an unusual juxtaposition for a story to start from, but Lorinda J. Taylor's imagination never strays too far from the unusual, and never fails to extract empathy and interest in equal measure from the reader. It is a concoction worth the sampling. Looking at the world through Robbie's eyes can be frustrating and indeed sometimes challenging, but never dull!
       We await the next episode of the Nikalishin saga with anticipation, not a little dread but the hope of some success.

The "previous novel" that Neil Aplin mentions is my WIP The Man Who Found Birds among the Stars.  I'm definitely planning to publish the opening segment of that marathon opus as soon as I can fit it into my schedule.  At the moment I'm still working on the sequel to the series The Labors of Ki'shto'ba Huge-Head.  More information will be forthcoming.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

TermiteWriter Is Being Interviewed on Internet Radio!

Annette Rochelle Aben kindly invited me to be interviewed on her program "Tell Me a Story" on the internet radio channel "The Magic Happens."  The interview will be live at 1:30 pm EDT, or you can access the Archive after the program airs.  Here's the URL for both the live broadcast and the Archive:

There is also a Facebook event running simultaneously.  The URL for this is 

I've made the ebooks of both volumes of The Termite Queen and 
v.1 of The Labors of Ki'shto'ba Huge-Head (The War of the Stolen Mother)
only 99 cents
at both Amazon and Smashwords from today through Oct. 25!
So you have no excuse not to get acquainted with my writings!

Here are links for all Amazon outlets for the three books:
The Termite Queen, v.1:
The Termite Queen, v.2:
The War of the Stolen Mother:

I hope you'll join Annette and me!  I'll try hard not to bore you!

Sunday, August 16, 2015

New 5-Star Review of Fathers and Demons

Here is a new review by Christopher Graham (aka The Story Reading Ape).  Amazon seems to be playing around with reviews again, because if you want to see this review there, you'll have to click on the 5-star bar.  It won't come up if you click on "See all reviews." 

       As with her series about Intelligent Termites, the author has researched deeply and given great consideration regards how to best use the knowledge she has gained.
       In this book (a precursor to her next story in this new series), the author has surmised how religions may have evolved by the 28th Century, particularly Catholicism and Judaism.
       Two characters, the Captain and the Chief Engineer, are survivors from a previous (failed) attempt to achieve deep space / intergalactic travel and the experience left them profoundly scarred mentally.
       However, with time and treatment, they have both been finally deemed fit to lead another attempt to conquer space.
       This book chronicles their individual journeys to understand and overcome their lingering fears regarding a malevolent 'something' they feel exists in deep space and is waiting for them.
The Captain, who has no religious beliefs of his own, has already learned some things from Catholicism that have offered him limited comfort and he now attempts to learn from Judaism.  I learned much from the wedding scenario being performed according to 'Judish' customs and beliefs, even more during the reception.
       The Chief Engineer, however, feels a strong need to meet and reconcile with his strong willed, opinionated Father and the Mother who ran away when he was in his early teens.
       It is true that there are no 'action packed moments' in the story, but that does not detract from the skill involved in building up the background of these two characters and help us understand their decisions and actions in the next book.

Thanks you, Chris, for great review!
Buy this book at the following sites:

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

The Blessing of Krozem: Great New Review of a Free Novelette


       I'll bet a lot of you have forgotten I have a perpetually FREE novelette over on Smashwords   Its title is "The Blessing of Krozem" and while it's been downloaded almost 600 times, I have only four reviews.  Give it a try -- according to the latest review, it's worth reading!  And another review is always appreciated!
       Here is the new 5-star review:

       A wonderfully fantastical world is brought to life by the author Lorinda J. Taylor. A rich descriptive narrative evokes a strange world inhabited by mortal humans, and immortal Troils. The reason why the Zem’l made the Troil live forever and not the humans, is steeped in mythology and the dreaming of Zem’l. 
       This is a very intriguing story about the need to live longer than you should, that kept me reading on. It is quite a philosophical story at the core, as well as being an entertaining fantasy read. Great use of language and interesting names help to place this story in a fantasy world. 
       A very well-written short read with a deeper, more involved theme to it than most fantasy works I have read. Internal struggle, greed and pathos are all present here. Such universal themes only add to the pleasure of reading this novella. The author has a gift for prose and I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good story beautifully written. Lovely cover illustration by the author too. I would have loved to have seen more of her drawings in the book.

       The review is by Nikki McDonagh.  You can find her books at this Amazon link.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

New Review of The Termite Queen, v.1

The latest review of my book The Termite Queen is by Jeremy Graves, a member of the linguistics and conlanging community.  A fair, balanced, and favorable review, although I could quibble over a couple of points -- but I'll let him finish v.2 first!  The only point I feel compelled to make is to suggest that anyone who finds my view of future history to be shallow and not carefully thought out should focus more closely on the nine-page exposition that appears in Chapter 14 and also on this blog on the page called "My Future History."  A brief summation of these several centuries was all I could manage without writing a 30-volume scholarly history of the future, which is obviously pretty impossible to do and would be nothing more than a meaningless consumption of time.
       Here is Jeremy Graves' review as published on Goodreads:
       A fascinating and rather unique concept, dealing with first contact between humans (and a few other alien races that have been known for some time by the period of this story) and a race of giant, intelligent termites. Personally, I found the non-termite characters (human and otherwise) to be a little shallow and superficial. Perhaps it's due to the somewhat utopian future Miss Taylor depicts, the background of which she briefly gives in the course of the story. It just seems that the human race has an overly optimistic outlook on life, and as such rarely digs deeper into their own spirits. This is unfortunate, as Miss Taylor obviously loves the human spirit and makes heavy reference to the classic literature which represents it best throughout the work. Even so, there is ambition in the person of Kaitrin Oliva, the linguist protagonist, personality conflicts between Kaitrin and the xenobiologist who supervised the first mission in which the termites were encountered, and a love story. In fact, volume I deals far too much with the love story, and far too little with the termites. In fact, the majority of the story is spent on earth, dealing with preparations to the expedition to the termite planet, and in space en route, with the developing love story. It is only at the very end of the book that the protagonist party arrives at the planet.
        There are some moments of depth, however. Early in the story, Kaitrin comforts a dying termite who was brought back from his planet. The scene manages to be quite powerful, in spite of what might seem rather absurd circumstances otherwise. There are moments of humor, as when Kaitrin angrily leaves from a date with the love interest, finds herself in an undesirable neighborhood, and attempts to defend herself against a perceived attacker, who turns out to be her date, come looking for her out of concern for her safety. But all of these pale in comparison to the strongest point of the book.
        That is the termites themselves. With the ambition, lust for power, and intrigue taking place within the mound Lo'ro'ra, the termites come across as more human than the earthlings. It is unfortunate that so little of this first volume is given to them, since they are by far the most interesting characters and carry the most interesting plot.
        However, volume I is incomplete without volume 2, and so far as I've read the second book, I've found it much more satisfactory. There are hints, too, that the love story which took so much to develop here in volume I, has its purpose, to be revealed later in volume 2.
        I recommend this as a unique piece of science fiction, with fascinating characters, at least in the termites. It might take a little effort, but I believe it will be worth it, especially if you read both volumes. I'll report back when I finish reading the second book, as well.
       Thanks, Jeremy Graves, for a fine review!
Purchase The Termite Queen and all my books here:
All other Amazon venues

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Sneak Preview of Father and Demons


SET FOR APRIL 9, 2015!

My next publication (due to be released sometime in the next six weeks) is entitled Fathers and Demons; Glimpses of the Future, and it doesn't have any giant termites!  In fact, it’s a serious work of speculative fiction about future human beings.  For the first time the general reading public will get to meet Capt. Robbin Nikalishin, the protagonist of my still unfinished opus, The Man Who Found Birds among the Stars.  The best way to introduce my new book to you is to present excerpts from the book’s introductory matter.

A Note from the Author

When I set out to write the life story of Capt. Robbin Nikalishin (the first starship commander to make contact with extraterrestrials), I intended it to be one longish novel entitled The Man Who Found Birds among the Stars.  Among other goals, I wanted to depict the history and state of Earth’s future civilization in greater depth than I had been able to do in my novel The Termite Queen.  This included recounting what had become of certain remnant elements of society – specifically, defined religious populations.  The Jews constituted one of these populations.
So I introduced a Jewish character who was about to get married.  I began to research Jewish weddings and ended spending a good three months immersed in all aspects of Jewish religion and culture.  I even studied a bit of Hebrew.  This new fascination caused the Jewish wedding section to expand into a lengthy tome that encompassed not only an exposition of Judaism but also a probe into the nature of gods and their relationship with human beings. 
Obviously, a chunk this weighty could not remain part of the basic novel.  However, the piece contains many striking and provocative elements, so I have extracted it, shortened it by some 10,000 words, and turned it into a separate “novel.”  In fact, it is not exactly a novel, since it starts and stops in medias res, with only enough explanation of what has gone before to make it comprehensible.  It consists of several sections, some that elaborate on the future history of Earth; some that illuminate Jewish faith, philosophy, and culture and the future history of religion in general; and some that detail the stories of certain individuals, both Jewish and secular.  The theme of fatherhood and the connections between fathers and gods form the mesh that binds the book together. 
The most appropriate designation to accord this piece is speculative literary fiction; it is science fiction in that it takes place in a future time, at the very inception of interstellar travel, but it also deals with demons and gods that may or may not be real, introducing an element of the supernatural.  The style varies; within a framework of omnipotent narration, certain history and tales are told through conversation or related by one of the characters, and there is even a venture into epistolary form.  It is a bit like a musical work, with each segment having its own tempo, theme, and mood.  …

Lorinda J. Taylor
Colorado Springs
April, 2015

By Way of Introduction: Earth and Space, 28th Century

       All human beings must live with demons, but those demons are unusually powerful when they are summoned by the sort of catastrophe that happened aboard the Darter in 2761.  Robbin Nikalishin, the Captain of that interstellar ship, had succeeded, by dint of much help and a determined will, in subduing his own demons, but no member of his crew had completely escaped being affected.  That was especially true of Cmdr. Ian Glencrosse, the Darter’s 2nd Assistant Engineer.  Nevertheless, when the rehabilitated Captain received command of the first real interstellar mission under the new Phenix Project, he selected Ian Glencrosse to serve as his Chief Engineer.  The choice was limited, because few officers expert in temporal quantum drive were still alive; furthermore Nikalishin and Glencrosse had become close friends.  And in spite of (or perhaps because of) his own demons, Glencrosse had accepted the appointment.  After all, he had saved his Captain’s life during the catastrophe.  A proverb says, when you save someone’s life, you become responsible for that person forever. 
       As the launch date for the “Big Mission” approached – the day when the IS Ariana would depart for Epsilon Eridani – the crew took leave time.  The excuse was the wedding of the Communications Officer, Lt. Avi Oman, and Capt. Mercedes Tulu, Administrative Aide to Adm. Sergey Malakoff, the Phenix Project’s Mission Director.  Lt. Oman hailed from the Istrian Judish Enclave, a place of origin mysterious to most 28th-century Earthers.  Mercedes was Midammeriken, born in the citrus-growing regions of Teyhas, but her father had immigrated from Ethopa in East Afrik.  Since she had Flasha ancestors, Avi’s family had blessed the marriage.
       Cmdr. Glencrosse did not accompany his fellow crewmembers on this happy excursion to the Adriantic Sea’s northern coast.  He had something other than recreation on his mind.  He had long been haunted by visions of a malevolent entity that inhabited the depths of space – the very entity that was responsible for destroying the Darter as the ship emerged from a temporal quantum pod.  Both his Captain and the team psychologist, Dr. Gill Winehandle, knew about this aberration; in fact, the doctor had at one time improvised an unfortunate nickname for the entity – “the god in the pod.”  While the Engineer’s peers thought his delusions were under control, Ian still secretly believed in the reality of this demon space-god – that it disapproved of humans’ invasion of its territory and therefore had doomed the upcoming mission to destruction.  Ian was convinced he would not survive the voyage and so he was heading home to Mitchican Prefecture, where after a long separation he would confront his parents and make his peace.

I will post updates on the release date on
like me while you’re there!)
 Twitter (@TermiteWriter)
Google+ (my community: Books by TermiteWriter).

And visit my Amazon and Smashwords pages
to check out my published books.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Metamorphs and Indiana Jones: My Two Main Characters in The Termite Queen

I've never published this before.
Strangely, I never did a picture
of Kaitrin Oliva.
Lots of times a textured
background doesn't come out right.
       While I was taking my afternoon nap (or rest) just now, I began to think about my protagonist Griffen Gwidian in The Termite Queen.  When I was writing this character, I absolutely fell in love with him.  Perhaps that isn't so surprising since I structured him to be fascinating to all women.  Unfortunately, the women who have read my novel haven't seemed to feel that way about him.  I made him enigmatic, mysterious, founded in a dark, twisted psychology -- everything women ought to find fascinating in a romantic hero.  So I began to think -- why haven't women been attracted to him? (Men haven't been attracted to him either, but that I expected.)
       In the story, Griffen has become skilled in altering himself to appeal to any woman he meets, and he is compelled (for reasons we learn late in the book) to do so.  So where did I get this character?  And I thought, Griffen is an empathic metamorph.  Do you remember the episode in StarTrek: The Next Generation called "The Perfect Mate"?  It's one of my favorite episodes.  A woman is being transported in stasis to be a gift to the ruler of a neighboring planet.  Kamala, wonderfully portrayed by the beautiful Famke Janssen, is an empathic metamorph -- she has the gift of making herself into whatever the man whom she is with at the moment wants her to be.  She is awakened too soon and ends up bonding with Picard, but duty forces her to give herself to this unpleasant Prince from the other planet.  (Poor Picard, he never gets the girl -- I always felt bad about that!)
       I think subconsciously I got the idea for Griffen's character from this metamorph concept.
      The love story between Griffen and Kaitrin Oliva takes up a large quantity of the book -- if you don't like the characters or the love story and all you want is termite adventures, I could see how you might find the book tedious.  One woman who read the book sort of pooh-poohed Griffen as not worth bothering with as a hero.  She said something like this (and she'll know who she is because we discussed it), "I like my adventure heroes to be like Indiana Jones -- he has his shortcomings and his fears, notably snakes, but they don't keep him from being heroic."
       Well, I never intended Griffen to be a stereotypical macho hero.  Certainly, he is not that!  I think if you go into the book expecting some cliched rendition of an adventure hero (or an adventure heroine for that matter), I can see why you might be disappointed.  In fact, the roles are reversed -- Griffen is a psychologically anguished man searching for a way to give meaning to his life and he becomes a metamorph in his quest.  It's Kaitrin Oliva who is Indiana Jones -- a strong-willed, adventurous heroine who may not particularly like going down the rabbit hole (i.e. into the termite mound), but who wouldn't consider not doing it. However, the roles become reversed again in Parts 3 and 4; Griffen does end by becoming the hero he always wanted to be, and Kaitrin becomes the anguished seeker, who has to find a new, more meaningful structure for her life.

Now I hope this elaboration on the characters will make
some of you want to go out and buy The Termite Queen
and get started on your quest to learn everything
you can about my termite people and my future world!

Remember it's a two-volume novel,
and you haven't finished it
and won't have the full impact unless you read v.2!
Find the book on
Amazon (paperback and Kindle)
and all the other Amazon nations.
Also at Smashwords (all varieties of ebooks)
Barnes & Noble