Exciting times for D.M. Cain!

Well, summer 2016 has been a busy one. As a primary school teacher I have six weeks summer vacation in which to catch up with all the writing and editing I can’t do in the school term.

So, what have I been up to in these six weeks?

Aside from looking after my hyperactive, cheeky little 5 year old son, I’ve been away on two holidays – Snowdonia in Wales, and a cruise to the Norwegian fjords. Both had beautiful, mountain scenery – just what I need to get my writer’s inspiration flowing.

These two breaks, as well as a significant amount of time at home have allowed me to achieve the following:

Camp NaNoWriMo

My editor (and awesome friend) Pam Elise Harris asked me this July to take part in Camp NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month)  I was terrified of the concept of only having one month to complete a writing project, but I decided to go for it. As it was my first challenge, I set myself a manageable target of 20,000 words and started a brand new novella entitled ‘Origin of Shadow’.

I am delighted to announce that I managed to completed my target! I now have a shiny Camp NaNo winner’s certificate to be proud of!

Camp NaNo certificate.jpg

This story was written to complement Genesis of Light – a similar sized novella. Each of these novellas tells the story of the origin of one of the armies in my Light and Shadow Chronicles series. Origin of Shadow lets readers in on the secrets of how the Brotherhood of Shadow were formed.The two novellas will need to go through editing but I hoping to release them sometime next year (My cover designer, Irina French, is due to start work on the covers shortly!)

Author talk at Newbold Verdon library

On Wednesday 10th August I gave my first ever author talk at my local library. I did this 2.5 hour presentation/interactive Q&A with a fellow author named Stewart Bint (we live 500 yards from each other!). It was so much fun and the engagement from our audience was wonderful! I am pleased to say I even managed to sell a few copies! I can’t wait to do more events like this in the future.

#Writestorm marathon day


July 31st was our first #writestorm marathon. Facebook group ‘The #Awethors’ (of which I am co-creator) joined in with a 24 hour writing marathon. People were not required to write all day (that would have been crazy!) but they were asked to select certain hour long periods entirely dedicated to adding words to their current Work-In-Progress. The #writestorm methodology is a concept developed by talented author Andy Mengel, which involves short, intense periods of writing which are timed and structured. This method allows authors the chance to blast out a high word count without distractions, and helps to feed motivation in the next writing session.

The event was a huge success! Between us we managed to write 41,000 words! No small feat of accomplishment for 24 hours. We’ll be sure to run more events like this in the future.

For more about the #writestorm process – check out the official handbook:










I’ve finally finished the first rounds of edits for The Shield of Soren!

The next novel in my Light and Shadow Chronicles series is ‘The Shield of Soren’. The books in this epic fantasy series are not chronological so this new installment could be read before or after the first release ‘A Chronicle of Chaos’ (available to buy here – just saying…) There are some characters who will appear in The Shield of Soren whom you might know from A Chronicle of Chaos: Raven, Deacon, Callista, Vincent, the mysterious tattooed man in black…

Now I’ve finished first round of edits, the book will be heading back to my editor for round 2 and I am hoping to be finished editing by the end of 2016, with a view to release in 2017.


What writing advancements has this summer brought for you?

Scars and Souvenirs by Rocky Rochford

Rocky Rochford is a close friend of mine and a very talented multi-genre author. His highly anticipated newest release ‘Scars and Souvenirs’ is a collection of 10 short stories.

Releasing August 26th

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Author: Rocky Rochford

Title: Scars & Souvenirs

Series: None

Genre: Emotional Thriller

Book Content Rating: Adult!!! Contains swearing, scenes of death, depression and suicide.

Tag-line: “Darkness has many forms and Mares is its playground.”


Every scar tells a story, a tale of loss, or a tale of regret. The scars on my arms an echo of when times were hard. The scars on my eyes of the dreaded horrors I can never unsee. The scars on my soul a lasting memory of the sins that tore my soul apart. The scars on my heart from a love forever lost. The scars on my wrists, the end result of a failed attempt to end a life of brokenness. Each scar is a story.  A story begging to be told.


The following is an extract from the Devil Came to Drag Me to Hell

“You will bleed. You will cry. You will love and you will say goodbye to all those you hold dear. Life is repulsed by shadow and you reek of it. I look forwards to watching the show.”

His words made perfect sense.

Of course they would—they were my own.

Words I would tell myself when I was all alone.

The Devil knows all.

Especially the one that sits on your shoulder.

In the depths of your soul.

“Your wound isn’t deep and the knife didn’t hit anything vital. You will go on to live, knowing this is what you do to people. The poison that flows through your veins always finds a way to push those you hold dear away, no matter how hard you try to cling to them. You are the villain, John, and the villain is destined to fail.”

He reached out and grabbed me. His hands on my throat squeezed and then he began to drag me. The world I had left returned.

As did the sound of my heart beating.

And the air in my lungs.

My eyes opened.

I gasped.

The Devil had come to drag me to Hell, but like he said for the likes of me. There is only one kind of Hell, the life of an endless nightmare I live on a daily basis.

He dragged me back to my old life.

A life of scars.

****Here concludes today’s extract, for more check out the full collection when it releases next month. ****

Rocky Rochford Biography

Author Shot - Rocky Rochford 2015 Rocky Rochford is your standard guy, if your standard guy scuba dives, partakes in underwater photographer and is a wake-boarding, adventure seeking, sword collecting, marine conservation supporter. After living life on the road and the places between, he finally settled down but not without benefiting from all the lessons life had to teach him.

Self-professed “Student of Everything, and Master of Nothing,” Rochford does not choose what he writes, but writes what chooses him, be it fantasy, crime, poetry, philosophy or even adventure. Life is a journey we all get to experience, just like a good book.

Every read into another of his typed works is another trip into the imagination of his mixed up, crazed and deranged mind and this year along those works include the likes of full novels and novellas such as:

London CallingLondon Calling – a Deep Water Novel (Spy Thriller)

Don’t Even Blink – Part of the Don’t Turn Around Trilogy (Horror)

Wait and Bleed – The Don’t Turn Around Collection (Horror collection of the entire Don’t Trilogy)

And now The Eye of Mares – Book 2 of the Rise of the Elohim Chronicles (Illustrated YA fantasy adventure)

Wait and Bleed

Other works released by him, are a number of short stories pertaining to horror, paranormal and romance, as well as other works released as part of an anthology:

The Devil You Know (Paranormal short)

Salt in the Wound – Part of the Entwined Saga (Paranormal short)

The Food of Love (featuring Him & Her) – An Anthology by Solstice Publishing (Romance filled Anthology)

Him & Her (Romance Standalone release)

Don’t Say A Word (Horror)


Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep Volume II (featuring The Devil Before) – An Anthology by the Solstice Shadows (Paranormal themed Anthology)

Awethology Dark (featuring Ghosts) – An Anthology by the #Awethors (Adult stories pertaining to a darker theme)

The December Awethology Dark Volume (featuring Seven Years Bad Luck) – An Anthology by the #Awethors (Adult stories pertaining to a darker theme, set around December)


****Welcome to the World of Rochford****

Social Media Links:

Rocky Rochford’s website: rockyrochford.wordpress.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/IamRockyRochford/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/RockyRochford

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7310280.Rocky_Rochford

Amazon page: http://www.amazon.com/Rocky-Rochford/e/B00O3AA3KU/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1449272442&sr=8-1


Rochford writes a little something for everyone, so if Scars & Souvenirs isn’t your cup of tea, you can guarantee one of his many other works will be!

Wizarding Protection Program: J.B. Taylor

This week the incredible J.B. Taylor (author of a whole range of exceptional stories and novels) has released two fantasy stories entitled ‘Wizarding Protection Program’.

Take a look and grab a copy!

Wizarding Protection Program 1


Wizarding Protection Program 1 – Christine is an actress, a breakout star in truth. She never believed in wizards. She never knew of the darkest wizard ever to have existed … Mortem. But Mortem knows of her. Christine is the sole survivor of his assassination of two wizarding journalists that resulted in a destroyed café and many dead civilians. Fearful her rising celebrity will bring his great plan to take over the wizarding world into the consciousness of the public he seeks her out, and Christine is forced on the run.







Wizarding Protection Program 2


Wizarding Protection Program 2 – A disciple of Mortem is on the hunt, killing those who’ve offended him deeply. Christine has survived one dark wizard and is forced to flee yet another. Help proves to come from the strangest of places. And maybe, just maybe, Christine will prove magical after all.





A Chronicle of Chaos for 0.99!

A Chronicle of Chaos is available to buy for just $0.99 / £0.99 from July 21st – July 27th. After that, the price returns to $4.99 – so why not grab a copy of this epic fantasy now!


Chronicle of Chaos 34 final file resized title and shield changed DPI flat.jpg


“The new book in DM Cain’s epic Light and Shadow fantasy series certainly plunges us in at the deep end. The heart of this book—its true essence—is prejudice and love, persistence, and stubbornness.” Stewart Bint, author of In Shadows Waiting and Timeshaft.

A brutal war has raged for centuries. The Brotherhood of Shadow and The Children of Light each yearn to rule the planet and will stop at nothing to defeat the other. Now, from the deepest bowels of Hell, the Brotherhood has summoned demons to fight for them. The demons could end the war once and for all, if only the Brotherhood can keep them under control.

Prophecy, destiny, honour, and glory: Chaos, a soldier in The Children of Light, fights in the name of all these things and could achieve them if he wasn’t so arrogant. He believes he is the best warrior in the land, until a fateful coincidence puts him at the mercy of the demon, Anathema.

The two warriors, demon and human, strike up an intense rivalry, but their obsession to destroy one another only leads them closer together. When the forces of Heaven and Hell collide, where will their loyalties lie?


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The Phoenix Project for just 0.99!

The Phoenix Project is available to buy for just $0.99 / £0.99 from July 11th – July 17th. After that, the price returns to $4.99 – so why not grab a copy of this psychological dystopian thriller now!


The Phoenix Project Cover


How can you fight to the death, when you’ve given up on life?

A thought provoking and compelling dystopian world that will change the way you view justice.

Britain has descended into chaos, as violence and terrorist attacks seethe across the once-peaceful country. Outraged by the steady stream of lawlessness, citizens demand a harsher penal system, and the Phoenix Project is born.

In prisons across the country, inmates fight to the death in a weekly bloodbath while the nation cheers them on.

Raven Kennedy, a prisoner who has never forgiven himself for his unspeakable crime, struggles against his own guilt and self-loathing. But even as the real war rages on within himself, Raven is forced to battle some of the prison’s most ruthless killing machines.

Fighting for his life and a chance for redemption, can Raven survive long enough to unravel the anger and regret that shackle him – and find the forgiveness he seeks?

“A superbly written debut, soaked in tension and intrigue.” Jack Croxall, author of the ‘Tethers’ trilogy.


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Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/D.M.-Cain/e/B00LTTX3PA/

In desperate need of Thunderclap help!

With just 2 days left until my Thunderclap campaign ends, I am still in need of 22 supporters! From July 11th – 17th The Phoenix Project will be on sale for just $0.99 / £0.99 and in order to get this news to as many people as possible, I need Thunderclap’s help.

This means I need as much support as possible. I will gladly return support for anybody else’s campaigns, or if you need shares or tweets etc.

Here is my campaign:





Today is #IndiePrideDay – a day when independent artists come together and celebrate their success and creativity. Indies don’t have teams of marketing agents behind them, and if they don’t get their own work out there, nobody else will. Each and every Indie has worked so hard to get themselves to where they are today.

So today I am standing beside my fellow Indies and feeling proud of our achievements!

To celebrate this day, my children’s book ‘Soren’ is FREE on Amazon for the next few days! Grab a copy here:

Amazon US: www.amazon.com/dp/B0198QGMMG/

Amazon UK: www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B0198QGMMG/

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Soren ebook cover - Copy



The Phoenix Project is back on sale!

Thanks to my amazing new publisher, Creativia, The Phoenix Project is now back on sale! Grab a copy here:

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01GKU3T92/

Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01GKU3T92/

The Phoenix Project Cover.jpg

THE PHOENIX PROJECT by DM Cain – my review no.51

Wow – I am absolutely honoured by this wonderful, in-depth review of The Phoenix Project! I truly feel that this reviewer managed to grasp the core of what I was trying to say. She looked beyond the violence and the celebrity culture of the book, and saw the true messages I wanted to communicate.

This was a difficult book to write (as said in the review, I truly did have to visit a dark place to get into this mindset), but it is very close to my heart because of this.


THE PHOENIX PROJECT by DM Cain – my review no.51

by Anita Kovacevic on 08/05/2016

The Phoenix Project was no small surprise for me. It guides the reader into the abyss of what is wrong with humanity, so many negative feelings, brutality, alienation, fascination with fame, lack of faith and communication, and the overwhelming exuberance of alienation. It is not the book for the faint-hearted, romantic reader who seeks light entertainment, and the author obviously did not write it according to the popular recipe for book sales, but out of conviction.

This is a dystopian version of human reality set in a horribly violent prison, with characters of questionable morality and almost no hope for optimism, save naivety. The main (anti)hero Raven is placed in a prison for a crime he did commit, and is forced, along with others, to fight to life or death in the prison arena during televised fights, deluded by the warden’s false promise of early release 5 years later and a zero chance of surviving that long. Along the way you also follow a paralel story of Raven’s life before prison, explaining what led to his crime.

Considering the current events in the world, the story is relevant in its relation to the consequences of terrorism, and is painfully shocking in depicting what people turn into when they are oppressed and afraid the whole time. The author poses a huge challenge before the reader – how do you justify the main character, who is a criminal himself although he claims to hate killing? What punishment would you give or could you give? How much is enough to atone for our trangressions and who is to judge? The corruption of society leaders and the obsession with media fame are too close to home for modern society, adding to the effect of the story on the reader.

The author’s style is consistent in depicting the depressing and overwhelming amount of unnecessary violence, people herded like sheep and subdued by fear, difficulties in forming even simple friendships, let alone meaningful romance. The amount of violence is strongly reminiscent of gladiator fights, and the historical analogy emphasizes the futility of hope for human progress. The story is profused by the dark and gloomy all the way, except for the epilogue which you can read at the link in the end of the story.

The characters are memorable, for all their faults and weaknesses. The inevitable fascination with brutality, madness and the celebrity cult is a vital spiritus movens of the story. You are both shocked and mesmerized by the characters, for instance – the quite extraordinary Millicent and Khan, the brutal brother and sister and the story of how violence shapes them. No character is faultless, nobody beyond reproach, even the seeming ‘good guys and gals’, even despite their redeeming actions and life history.

Raven, the main anti-hero, was difficult to relate with for me – his lack of strength and conviction in his everyday life outside prison is so sad. He tries to please his girlfriend Seraphia by not being himself, he stays with her even after she makes a tragic decision about their common future (trying to avoid spoilers here) and even though he knows she is leaving. This eventually leads up to his crime, which, for the reader, becomes easy to guess, but difficult to condone. You keep wondering why he didn’t just choose a different path. Raven makes all the wrong decisions, and his life is a study into loneliness, depression, weakness, indecisiveness, lethargy, guilt… The feeling of isolation is enhanced by the lack of anything outside the prison from the moment he enters it, which adds to the claustrophobic atmosphere. The final scenes, when he is forced to be alone with himself, are interesting, because people always say it is the most difficult thing in life not to be able to spend time with your own self. Apart from the vivid graphic descriptions, I felt the author could have even done slightly more with this section. The purgatory/hell-like scenery is depicted really well.

However, I cannot recommend this read to everyone, but only because this kind of a story is an acquired taste. The author’s dedication and vision are strong and convincing. I am definitely recommending The Phoenix Project to fans of post-apocalyptic dystopia and those interested in the psychology of violence and loneliness.

What amazes me is knowing that the author must have gone to a really dark place of vision for this story, and is to be commended for persevering in the same tone and mood the entire time, and sticking to conviction, without succumbing to what is easier. Congratulations on that courage.

(On a P.S. note, I have read the epilogue, and much as my romantic side felt it deserved its readers, it stood slightly separate from the rest of the story in its tone.  So many things happen in the epilogue, which soothe the optimists among readers, but compared to the development of the book plot itself, it feels more like a dream than the ‘real’ ending. Nevertheless, I was grateful for the offer of hope and consolation.)


Source: THE PHOENIX PROJECT by DM Cain – my review no.51

Cover reveal – Summer Soiree by S.L. Stacker


I’m handing my blog over to the talented S.L. Stacker today so that she can reveal her absolutely stunning new book cover for ‘Summer Soiree’.

When I began writing Summer Soiree, I knew I wanted a masquerade type mask on the cover in some fashion. I searched stock photos for hours and found several pics, however, none of them were quite what I was looking for. I was tired of looking at the same photos over and over, and I finally decided to use a different stock site, and I found the pic I wanted. Within a matter of minutes, I had purchased the photo, and within an hour, I had a new cover!

Summer Soiree Full Cover.jpg

Summer Soiree Synopsis

Junior year has come to a close, and Taylor Brighton is excited about being a Senior. She decides to keep a diary in order to document the events of her upcoming Senior year.

On the first day of summer break, when she writes her first entry, she has no way of knowing the events that would unfold…events that she may not want to remember.

An annual end-of-the-year party, true friends, and a blast from her past will leave this soon-to-be-senior with a summer to remember.


S.L. Stacker’s biography:

S.L. Stacker is an author with Booktrope publishing. She has written and published three Romantic Suspense books in the Macyn McIntyre series. Her current projects include several fiction novels, but her focus is the Sisters of Summit Bay series—to be published in 2016/2017.

When she isn’t throwing her readers for a loop and leaving them wanting more, she can be found relaxing and hanging with her husband, children, and dogs. You can visit her at http://www.slstacker.com