Hey everyone! Welcome back to another monthly update from my small corner of the Internet.

First, a big hello to all of you receiving your first newsletter from me! That's the majority of you at this point thanks to the success of the SPFBO9 Indie Fantasy Big Book Giveaway. Thank you for entering—I hope Kenny Gould has sent you your eBooks if you were one of the lucky winners!

If you didn't win, I have good news! You're all winners in my book.

That's not just empty praise. I mean it literally! Since you're a part of my mailing list now, you're welcome to head over to the download page and pick up your free copy of An Ocean of Others.

An Ocean of Others Download

You may not have won every book in the giveaway, but you've won mine! (And if you read it and leave a review, you'll also win my undying gratitude 😉)

I suppose now is a good time to introduce myself and tell you what you can expect from me, because the last thing I want is for you to feel like you got subscribed to yet another indie author's newsletter (ugh, free books, writing updates, how awful!). If after reading this you have no interest in my work, go ahead and unsubscribe—absolutely no hard feelings. If you do choose to stick around, however, I hope I can make it worth your while!

First, a bit about me. My name as it appears on my books is Joshua Scott Edwards, but you can just call me Josh. Self-publishing is expensive, so I work as a software engineer to pay the bills (and the editors, and the artists, and the... you get the idea). Some of my favorite authors and inspirations are George RR Martin, Brandon Sanderson, and Joe Abercrombie. I won't deign to place myself on their level, but if you love their work, perhaps you can find something to like in my books too!

An Ocean of Others is my debut from last year, which is the first in a grimdark trilogy inspired by a Dungeons & Dragons campaign me and my friends played. It features a group of misfits exchanging plenty of banter as they hunt mysterious monsters that bend everyone's perception of reality. I'm hard at work on the sequel, so I hope you'll give the book a shot if it sounds interesting!

As for the newsletter, I try to keep it simple. I'll send one newsletter per month, always on the 4th. This is actually the 2-year anniversary of the newsletter, and I haven't missed a single update yet (apart from when I announced a break ahead of time for my honeymoon month). In these emails, you'll find writing updates, giveaways, community spotlights, and for those who stick around to the end, pictures of my adorable (and sometimes ghoulish) new puppy, Nazgul.

Until last month, I was also publishing chapters of my serial, Grave of the Waiting. This is a sci-fi horror story whose chapters I've been sending out on the 1st of each month, although it's currently on hiatus so I can focus on the sequel to An Ocean of Others—the as-yet-untitled Sibling Suns 2. At some point, I'll resume sending those out, but that's months and months away, and you'll get plenty of warning in advance.

Grave of the Waiting
An ongoing sci-fi horror serial. New chapters on the 1st of every month!

That's it! I publish more on my website, so I encourage you to explore the site, but those are the only things that'll show up in your inbox. I take great care not to spam you—if you do want more frequent updates, your best bet is to follow me on Twitter where I'm most active.

Finally, if you ever want to contact me for any reason, my Twitter DMs are open, or you can respond to me at the address this email came from. I respond to every message and look forward to hearing from you!

Alright, with that out of the way, let's get back to the regularly scheduled content.

99¢ eBook Sale

Seeing as I just told you my book was free, I don't expect any of you to pick up An Ocean of Others on Amazon for $0.99. Luckily, there are five other incredible authors you can support—all for less than a cup of premium coffee these days (inflation hits hard!)


I'm sure you've heard of some of these authors. They're all part of SPFBO9 and they're all extraordinarily talented. I'm personally halfway through Curse of the Fallen by H.C. Newell right now and loving it. Fans of The Witcher and Skyrim, this one's for you!

The sale runs until tomorrow, July 5th, so don't miss your chance!

Sibling Suns 2 Update

This is a few days old — we're actually at 106,562 words now

I hit another big milestone with Sibling Suns 2 this month: 100,000 words! If you were here last month, you might remember I sent a similar graphic that said 90,000 words and 50% progress. I reevaluated my outline, updated my progress board, and recalculated the numbers, so this is the more accurate than my last estimate. That's good, because I don't want this to be a 180,000 word book! Thinking about it though...I don't want this to be a 160,000 word book either. Plenty of trimming still to come in the second draft!

But this month saw some good progress. I finished Part I of POV3, so I think I'm on track to finish the first draft by my new deadline in September. 15,000 words isn't exactly a banner month, but coming off a two-month-long writing slump, I'll take anything I can get. Things have been particularly hard this June trying to balance writing time with new puppy time. Nazgul needs care and attention pretty much 24/7, and sleep deprivation has certainly taken its toll on both me and my wife.

To quickly recap my method for writing this 3 POV story: since each character's voice needs to be distinct, I've been writing one viewpoint at a time all the way through Part II (of III). Once all three POVs have reached Part III, then I plan to start writing the climax when all the plotlines converge. POVs 1 and 2 are already at that point, so if things go well, I'll reach the end of Part II for POV3 and start drafting the finale this month. I can't wait!

SPSFC2 Finalist Reviews

You've probably heard of Mark Lawrence's Self-Published Fantasy Blog Off competition, but how about Hugh Howey's Self-Published Science Fiction Competition? The SPSFC is pretty much the same idea as SPFBO, but, as you might have guessed, for indie science fiction books.

I was lucky enough to be a judge for this competition that started in August last year and is set to wrap up in just 10 days! My reviews for all of the finalists are below, but for our entire team's verdict keep an eye on ScienceFiction.news.

It's been an incredible journey—and incredibly taxing. As a mood reader, this was a tough commitment to stick to, but I'm glad I did. I discovered some wonderful sci-fi stories, some favorites of which are included in this Twitter thread.

Now with my part concluded, I get to sit back and wait to see who takes the crown. No matter who wins, all of the finalists' books are worth reading and enjoyable in their own ways. No competition is perfect (especially one such as this, run entirely by volunteers), but I'm confident in we elevated some amazing stories this year. The authors should be proud of what they accomplished.

Finalist Reviews


How lucky am I my wife is as big a nerd as I am? We settled on the name Nazgul for a dog long before we seriously started searching for one. But this month, we finally took the plunge and welcomed a new member into our family!

Meet Nazgul, the blue-eyed miniature schnauzer, the Black Rider, Morgul-pup.


At the best of times, he's an affectionate, smart puppy. Other times, he's a Gul. Chomping on everything with his T-rex teeth, running wild, and always clamoring for attention. He's been a handful, but we love him. He even has the makings of a good dog rattling around in that little brain of his.

If you want to follow his Instagram account, @schnauzgul, my wife Rachel and I will post pictures and videos there semi-regularly. Otherwise, I'll include a few shots at the end of each newsletter.

That's it for this month! If you're new, I hope you choose to stay, and I'll see you in August. As always, thanks for reading!