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Friday, December 22, 2017

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Reviews of Small-Town Texas Book

  • “A lush tangle of small-town life branches out in this engrossing collection of short stories.” –Kirkus Reviews
  • “I found this book to be a perfect vacation companion.” –A. Chandler, #1 Amazon.Com reviewer
  • “A talented, insightful author.” –E. Conley, Betty's Books
  • “The town is Acorn, Texas, and it is a representation of all of the tiny places, or wide places in the road that dot America.” –jonboy
  • “If you liked WINESBURG, OHIO . . . rejoice.” –Watchword
  • “By the time you have finished reading these tales of the people who inhabit the fictitious town of Acorn, Texas, population 21,001, you will have met some endearing as well as irritating characters, from the Mayor to the local would-be gigolo; from the busy-bodies to the business owners; from those who grew up in Acorn and have tried to escape the small town to those who have moved to Acorn to escape from the real world.” –Ronald L. Donaghe, author of Uncle Sean
  • “A well-crafted collection of short stories.” –L. L. Lee, author of Taxing Tallula
  • “It was a real pleasure to read about the fictional town of Acorn, Texas.” –Mark Kendrick, author of Desert Sons
  • “Simolke makes good use of his vivid imagination in creating credible dialogue and satirical images.” –Huda Orfali, author of Blue Fire
  • “There are people that you like, some that you can't wait to see if they get theirs.” –Joe Wright, StoneWall Society
  • “Each of Simolke's stories lets us look into the lives of some of the most interesting characters I have ever read about.” –Amos Lassen, Literary Pride
  • “When you finish, when you put the book aside, Acorn will still be with you.” –E. Carter Jones, author of Absence of Faith
  • “I highly recommend this book!” –Richard Carlson, author of Jeremy Grabowski's Crazy Summer in Stormville!
  • “…reminds us that nobody is perfect and that everyone is just trying to get by in life either it be by hurting others or by trying to change their life for the better.” —The Abstract
Read the reviews at Kirkus Reviews, The Abstract, Amazon.Com, GoodReads, bn.com (2nd edition), and bn.com (1st edition).

Kindle Edition * Barnes & Noble Nook eBook * Excerpts from The Acorn Stories * The Individual Stories * Reading Group Questions * Historical Acorn, Texas

Book Trailer: West Texas Fiction Book Trailer 2: Texas

Monday, December 11, 2017

Tome Tender: Book Review: Taldra: Science Fiction Adventures by Duane Simolke

Tome Tender: Taldra: Science Fiction Adventures by Duane Simolke



"Edge-of-your-seat action, scenes that detail the turmoil and terror of an alien attack and an inside look at love and acceptance for humanity’s differences."

The Abstract reviews The Acorn Stories

"...a collection of short stories that use a small West Texas town as its backdrop. Each story shows a little something about the townspeople. I really liked how it all kind of intertwines too. While reading 'The Acorn Stories,' you really do feel like you are there. That is another plus for reading the collection."

Read more at The Abstract.

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Stories that "packed a punch" for good reading

I found this book to be a perfect vacation companion. Filled with stories that "packed a punch" for good reading but were also short and often had some good humor spliced into the writing. -Chandler

Monday, November 20, 2017

AN INSPIRING, VIVID AND UNIQUE WORK

The town is Acorn, Texas, and it is a...... review gif

The town is Acorn, Texas, and it is a representation of all of the tiny places, or wide places in the road that dot America.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Interview with Writer/Reader WebSite AllAuthor

My AllAuthor interview about #writing, #scifi, #Texas, social media, coming out, & more. https://allauthor.com/interview/duanesimolke/ #Amwriting #BookReview #Books #Reviews #Authors #GreatReads #Writer #Quotes #Fiction #Reading #Kindle #Promo #eBook

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Ask David: What to Read Next: Gay SciFi

Book: Taldra - Science Fiction Adventures by Duane Simolke Book, Gay Marriage, LGBT, Queer SciFi, Iroquois, Strong Women, Native American, Diversity Science Fiction, People of Color, SciFi Racial Diversity, Alien Invasions, LGBT Science Fiction

Ask David: What to Read Next: Texas

Ask David: What to Read Next: The Acorn Stories Book, Small-Town, West Texas, Texans, Texas Humor, Funny, Lubbock Texas, Satire, Gay Texans, Gay Texas, Deaf, Short Stories

Saturday, August 19, 2017

For Readers and Writers: The MineEye Online Bookstore

The MineEye Online Bookstore presents detailed eBook information, organized by a community of artists, writers, and musicians. A long list of categories makes searching easier, and MineEye actively promotes the individual works on various social media platforms.

From their portal page:

"MineEye is an online bookstore with a unique vision. We connect writers with their audience in a friendlier, more up-close manner than you have seen before. Borne out of a collective of authors, poets and musicians, we nurture great talent and give our readers a chance to connect with new and exciting writers. Start exploring our store and download a new book today!"

Taldra: Science Fiction Adventures at MineEye.

Thursday, August 03, 2017

Publishers Weekly

Read about #Batman, #TheAcornStories, #TheGlassCastle, #BruceCampbell, and more in the July 31, 2017 issue of Publishers Weekly.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Science Fiction Book Review: Read About "A highly-imaginative sci-fi adventure."

Simolke’s alternate universe hits all the right notes between the fantastic and the believable. There is a dizzying and impressive array of ideas that permeate this novel. Taldra is a great sci-fi read, especially for those who enjoy history and religion mixed in with technology. This is one story where all three blend seamlessly into one." Self-Publishing Review, ★★★★ Read the SciFi Book Review.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Fire and Ice: Free or Discounted Books, by Genre

Fire and Ice: "Over the years we've featured hundreds of books, so readers of all genres will be able to find new authors and e-books to read!"

Monday, June 26, 2017

$1.99 Fiction Feature and Author Interview: The Acorn Stories by Duane Simolke

$1.99 Fiction Feature and Author Interview: The Acorn Stories by Duane Simolke. An interview and excerpt at Fire and Ice Books. I also discuss Degranon and more of my work.

From romantic comedy to razor-sharp satire to moments of quiet reflection, The Acorn Stories transform a fictional West Texas town into a tapestry of human experiences. “A lush tangle of small-town life branches out in this engrossing collection of short stories.” –Kirkus Reviews. “There are people that you like, some that you can’t wait to see if they get theirs.” –Joe Wright, StoneWall Society. “A well-crafted collection of short stories.” –L. L. Lee, author of Taxing Tallula.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Degranon: A Science Fiction Adventure.

Degranon: A Science Fiction Adventure
By Duane Simolke
Winner, Pride in the Arts Award
On the planet Valchondria, no illness exists, gay marriage is legal, and everyone is a person of color. However, a group called “the Maintainers” carefully monitors everyone’s speech, actions, and weight; the Maintainers also force so-called “colorsighted” people to hide their ability to see in color.

The brilliant scientist Taldra loves her twin gay sons and thinks of them as the hope for Valchondria’s future, but one of them becomes entangled in the cult of Degranon, and the other becomes stranded on the other side of a doorway through time. Can they find their way home and help Taldra save their world?


  • “This is an incredible book about the human condition and how one person striving for the good can, in the end, be a source of change.” –Rainbow Reviews
  • “So for those who want a thought provoking and fun sci-fi read, then I would highly recommend Degranon; so hover on over to the bookstore and check this one out.”—Blogger Girls
  • “In Degranon, author Duane Simolke establishes his voice in gay genre writing by combining current concerns revolving around queer culture with a world of dimensional doorways, advanced technology, and distant planets.” –X-Factor, October 1, 2004 issue
  • “It's a very good story.” –HomoMojo.Com and I Must Be Dreaming
  • “A must read.” – Joe Wright, for StoneWall Society
  • “A reminder of the danger of fanaticism.” –Mark Kendrick, author of Stealing Some Time
  • “Duane Simolke's latest offering is a fascinating scifi excursion into a world as unique as his singular vision.” –Ronald L. Donaghe, author of CinĂ¡tis
  • “I recommend DEGRANON for its exciting, well-constructed narrative, its often intriguing characters, and its wealth of ideas both political and philosophical.” –J. Clark
  • “DEGRANON is sci-fi that warrants the attention of any serious aficionado, gay or straight, fascinated by alien worlds that mirror our own world.” –William Maltese, author of Beyond Machu

New! Revised third edition eBook released in 2016. Nook and Kindle.

Both Taldra #SciFi Adventure Novels in One EBook.

Join the Degranon discussions at Goodreads, Shelfari, and Black Caviar Book Club.

Though it takes place on other worlds, all the characters in this book are people we might call Native American, African American, Hispanic, Asian, or Middle Eastern. Some of them are also gay. Degranon deals with themes of diversity, censorship, and religious violence. It takes place in an alternate dimension, with some of our prejudices and other problems looked at from unusual angles. More importantly for most scifi fans, though, it delivers fast-paced action and constant twists.

Excerpt: We’re Glad Our Son Is Gay.

Excerpt: The Maintainers Arrive.

Degranon: Reading Group Questions.

Book Trailer 1, Book Trailer 2, Book Trailer 3.

Degranon: A Science Fiction Adventure discussed in Encyclopedia of Contemporary LGBTQ Literature of the United States.

A glossary for Degranon and its upcoming sequel, Sons of Taldra.

Sons of Taldra: GoodReads Preview, Book Teaser/Spoiler Alert, Writing a Novel.

Nook, Fishpond.co.nz, Fishpond.co.au, Degranon: Kindle eBook, Kindle Germany, Gay Science Fiction Worlds, Gay Science Fiction for Canadian Readers, Gay Science Fiction for the UK, SciFi/Fantasy Adventure, Gay Science Fiction at bn.com, Fantasy Adventure at bn.com, Gay Fantasy at bn.com, Science Fiction Adventure at bn.com.

Saturday, May 06, 2017

Featured Web Site: StopHomophobia.Com

StopHomophobia.Com is a site dedicated to educating LGBT people, their allies, and everyone else about the damages of homophobia. It features many resources, such as related history, coming out, gay myths, how to combat prejudice, and how to prevent such problems as suicide and domestic violence.

It’s a vast site with many ways to get involved. Readers can find many more resources, and some inspiring pics, via Twitter: WipeHomophobia and Facebook: STOP-Homophobia.com.

Please also see Holding Me Together and Reactions to Homophobia.

Thursday, May 04, 2017

Taldra: Gay Science Fiction Adventures

Taldra: #SciFi Adventures

Taldra Discussion in Two Gay Geeks Webcast.

Set in an alternate reality, the Taldra novels focus on gays, people of color, and powerful women. Degranon: A Science Fiction Adventure flings an Iroquois family into a battle across time and space. In Sons of Taldra: A Science Fiction Adventure, alien shapeshifters and dark secrets threaten humanity. Both works appear in this specially priced eBook.

“Edge-of-your-seat action, scenes that detail the turmoil and terror of an alien attack and an inside look at love and acceptance for humanity’s differences.” —Tome Tender. Read this SciFi Book Review.

“A highly-imaginative sci-fi adventure. Simolke’s alternate universe hits all the right notes between the fantastic and the believable. There is a dizzying and impressive array of ideas that permeate this novel. Taldra is a great sci-fi read, especially for those who enjoy history and religion mixed in with technology. This is one story where all three blend seamlessly into one.” Self-Publishing Review, ★★★★ Read this SciFi Book Review.

Set in an alternate reality, the Taldra adventures focus on gays, people of color, and powerful women. Books 1 and 2 of Taldra both appear in this specially priced collection. Degranon: A Science Fiction Adventure flings an Iroquois family into a battle across time and space.

In an alternate reality, Earth is the planet Valchondria. No illness exists, gay marriage is legal, and everyone is a person of color. However, the Maintainers carefully monitor everyone’s speech, actions, and weight. The Maintainers also force so-called “colorsighted” people to hide their ability to see in color.

The Iroquois scientist Taldra thinks of her twin gay sons as the hope for Valchondria’s future, but one of them becomes entangled in the cult of Degranon, while the other becomes stranded on the other side of a doorway through time. Can they find their way home and help Taldra save their world?

Winner, StoneWall Society Pride in the Arts Award.

“A thought provoking and fun sci-fi read.” —Blogger Girls

In Sons of Taldra: A Science Fiction Adventure, alien shapeshifters want to feed on humanity. Taldra again relies on her sons to help protect Valchondria. The Maintainers still hold dark secrets that might pose an even greater threat than the invaders. World events and Native American storytelling inspired this sequel to Degranon.

“The most intriguing aspect of the story is controlled by emotion as relatable characters grow and brave it all together, selflessly helping each other.” -Enas Reviews

Excerpt:

Lorfeltez stopped speaking. The audience grew still and quiet. The Maintainers had arrived. They filed through the crowd like a swarm of insects, freely pushing and shoving with all the authority their office granted them, elbowing several people, and pushing a few out the doorways.

Part of the crowd disappeared, as if the weight of the entering officers forced them outside. However, many of them failed to move away in time, and the Maintainers grabbed at their collars or even punched at them, before finding the sources of the disruption.

A female Maintainer yanked the holo-projectors away, knocking them to the floor, then used the handle of her sleep rifle to destroy them, sending hot metal parts and wires everywhere. One of the wires gashed a woman’s arm, sending out a small spurt of blood. Before even noticing her, the Maintainers handcuffed all five men, even while the crowd continued to shift madly about, trying to escape. One of the Maintainers assisted the injured woman, holding his hand over the cut on her arm.

Dr. Lorfeltez saw an elderly red woman in the audience, frail to the point that she had obviously lived beyond the virus’s benefits. One of the Maintainers waved his laser pistol around to scare away the remnants of the controversial gathering. He threw the metal cylinder up in the air and let it drop glove-like around his left hand.

(Excerpt from the revised, third edition of Degranon, Copyright 2016.)

Keywords: gay marriage, love is love, LGBT, queer, POC, People of Color, Native American, Iroquois, Navajo, African American, Black, Hispanic, Latino, Latina, Asian, Middle Eastern, religion, faith, atheism, cults, diversity, DiversityInSFF, strong females, powerful women, women, alternate reality, space epic, romance, free speech, individuality, scifi, SyFy.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Featured Blog: Science Fiction/Fantasy Exploration with Our Epic Worlds.

Our Epic Worlds, from the “About” page: “blog devoted to the vibrant universe of speculative fiction, dedicated to the art and craft of world-building. We intend to publish engaging author interviews and articles about the vibrant worlds our favorite characters inhabit, rage against, and defend against apocalypse.”

The use of “vibrant” fits the blog, with its bright colors, reader-friendly layout, engaging interviews, and insight into science fiction and fantasy writing. Please read my Interview about Valchondria at Our Epic Worlds, but don’t stop there. Our Epic Worlds is a fun read and an interesting resource for readers and writers.

The Our Epic Worlds twitter account includes links to the latest posts.

Author M.L. Spencer manages Our Epic Worlds.

Sunday, April 09, 2017

Featured Website: Books 4 Dozens Book Promotion Service

http://BOOKS4DOZENS.COM: "#Books 4 Dozens is an online book shop platform created purely to promote the ebooks of indie authors." Free and paid resources for book promotion, as well as ways for readers to find more titles. Their basic promo is free and includes multiple shares across several social media platforms. Follow them at https://twitter.com/books4_dozens. I've already tried it for one of my books. After approval, the posts quickly began appearing. 

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Talk About Diversity-Themed Science Fiction

Join the discussion about Sons of Taldra: A Science Fiction Adventure at Goodreads.

In an alternate reality, an Iroquois woman and her twin gay sons battle shapeshifting aliens.

Keywords: Native American, African American, Middle Eastern, strong women, gay, lesbian, LGBT, queer, scifi, diversity, alternate reality, book club, book chat.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

#17 in List of Famous Alumni of Belmont University

Nashville, Tennessee: I'm #17 in a List of Famous Alumni of Belmont University, after Brad Paisley, Kimberley Locke, Minnie Pearl, Levi Kreis, etc.! I'm only #74 in a list of Famous People Named Duane or Dwayne. Dwayne Johnson is # 1, of course.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Texas Book Featured on booksofmonthclub.com

Read about The Acorn Stories at BooksOfMonthClub.Com.

Small-town life is funnier and crazier than you imagined! These West Texas tales reveal the closely connected lives of rural eccentrics. “A lush tangle of small-town life branches out in this engrossing collection of short stories.” –Kirkus Reviews. “The ability to depict such a wide cross section of humanity, including details of each character’s breadth of knowledge and experience, takes a talented, insightful author, and Duane Simolke is such a writer.” –E. Conley, Betty’s Books.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

M/M Gay Valentine’s Day Idea: Sharing a Romantic Poem.

Send or read that man this gay love poem from Holding Me Together and Selected Poems. Spoon away your holiday!

If he’s a scifi geek, send him this scene with a gay marriage proposal, from Sons of Taldra: A Science Fiction Adventure.

Saturday, February 04, 2017

Bielfield - Blow My Mind. Fun Dance Music!

"Music video by Bielfield performing Blow My Mind. (C) 2016 Sony Music. Entertainment Australia Pty Ltd."

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Gay-Themed Music Video: Troye Sivan - HEAVEN ft. Betty Who. LGBT.

"we have always been here. we will always be here. this video is dedicated to all who’ve come before me and fought for our cause and those who now continue the fight. in dark and light times, let’s love forever. love, troye x"

Saturday, January 07, 2017

Something old & something new in 2017

Happy New Year!

I'm currently writing a new short story, not based on any of my previous works. It's a gay romantic comedy set in Texas.

I'm also working on a revised version of The Return of Innocence: A Fantasy Adventure.

Please be good to yourself and others throughout the year!