“Christmas in July” Coming Soon: A Limited Omnibus Edition of Enigma 1&2 by Nephylim

Releasing on July 1st, 2013 and available only for one month, this limited omnibus edition will combine book one and two of the Enigma series: “Enigma” and “Fighting The Man” by Nephylim. Over 650 pages will include original artwork by the author and Maria K. as well as the bonus story, “Silver’s First Christmas.”

Leading up to the release, a number of other authors and blogs will host Nephylim, who will be providing more background about the characters and themes through interviews and excerpts, as well as having contests for giveaways. Promos start June 3rd!

The blog sites:

Cia’s Stories http://ciasstories.blogspot.com/
M.A. Church http://machurch00.blogspot.com/
Andy Gordon http://andrewqgordon.com/category/my-writing/
Talismania http://talismania-brilliantdisguise.blogspot.co.uk/
Chris T. Kat http://t.co/h6Kn4uYhRV

The books:

EnigmaXsmEnigma, Book 1 of Enigma:

“Can love ever be forbidden? Can the strongest of all human emotions be denied because someone tells you it cannot be? When Silver made his decision he very nearly paid with his life. Now River is faced with his choice believing that it is only his career at stake. However, when Silver’s past catches up with him River finds that there is more at stake than he could ever have imagined.”

enigma2MIDFighting the Man, Book 2 of Enigma:

“River had always known that living with a freed slave, even one as sweet as Silver, was never going to be easy. It gets a lot harder when his parents are killed leaving him to care for his young brother. When Social Services get involved he has a choice to make. Unfortunately, he makes the wrong one.”

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About The Author:


Born into a poor but loving mining family in the United Kingdom, Nephylim grew up in the beautiful and history rich South Wales Valleys, becoming the first in her family to attend university. As a lawyer practicing Family Law for several years, the profession allowed Nephylim to learn more about human nature at its worst and best moments, and develop empathy and a view of life not limited by social standing or background.

Tapping into the heritage of her people that throughout Earth’s ages welcomed the wandering bard into the hearts of their villages as keepers of lore, Nephylim trained as a Druid and brings the richness of her Celtic past and spiritual training to enrich and elevate her writing. Since a child Nephylim has been fascinated with other worlds, which exist within and alongside her own and has reveled in creating worlds and characters for others to enjoy.

Despite lack of family support, Nephylim continued writing privately and eventually found the Gay Authors website. With the positive response and a warm welcome received, she found the confidence to pursue her passion to a greater degree. Feeling gay fiction was a woefully neglected corner of the market where readers were all too often presented with what amounted to erotica, Nephylim strives to write quality gay fiction where sex and sexuality is not the central premise. Instead, concentration is given to character and narrative development through storytelling that goes beyond the physical.

Nephylim still resides in Wales, UK, and enjoys writing, reading, art, and taking part in medieval reenactments.

Author Links:






Author Interview & Book Spotlight: Red Haircrow at The “Books and Tales” Blog

aofjfont2 500750

You can “read about me” on my site here, naturally, but as is your interest (or involving the various interviews about me that can be followed by link here or elsewhere) please take the time to visit Annette Gisby’s blog “Books and Tales” and read an interview and post about my latest release, “The Agony of Joy”  that was posted 10 April 2013.

The inclusion is greatly appreciated, especially in that they have a range of genres on their site that I was glad mine fit into. Please visit their site to see the full interview, as well as the many other articles, interviews and features they have. Books and Tales:


Do you plan everything or just let the story flow?

I usually begin writing on a story in some way before I do a detailed outline on how I would like it to progress. Also, sometimes, depending on the type of work it is: very deep, complex or quite personal to me, I will meditate and think about it for a long time. That can often take months or even years, but when I do begin to write it down, it all flows out at once.

Do your characters ever want to take over the story?

In my fiction work, they are allowed to, because it is their story after all. Sometimes what I plan and what I want to take place doesn’t work for what they need to express, so I let them change it, as it were.


After 10 Years in the Works: The Agony of Joy by Red Haircrow

aofjfont2 500750From the press release:  “Taking almost ten years to complete, The Agony of Joy, incorporates many of the author’s experiences and observations as a survivor of sexual abuse and violence.

But far from being the central theme, although psychological and behavioral after-effects continue for many, the novel focuses on the courage it takes, often in the face of opposition, misunderstanding and/or apathy to not allow anything or anyone to keep you imprisoned by that past: not even yourself.

One of the primary reasons the author returned to university, completing a degree in Psychology (graduation Spring 2013) was to help others in this and other regards, as well as continue personal healing.”

“Finding the courage to face the pain of the past in order to have a future.”

  • Title: The Agony of Joy
  • By: Red Haircrow
  • Published: February 17, 2013
  • ISBN: 9781301334520
  • Length: 350 pages
  • Genre: Literary Fiction, Contemporary Fiction, GLBTIIQ Interest
  • Price: $4.99 in e-book format
  • Available at Smashwords, OmniLit & soon at other online distributors
  • Book Trailer: The Agony of Joy

Blurb: For many survivors of child sex abuse, there is a lifelong battle for understanding and acceptance, not only from others, but also from themselves. From London to Berlin, to the frozen seas of far east Russia, this is an unforgettable journey of rebirth, revelation and redemption as two men struggle to overcome their separate past agonies and allow themselves to experience friendship and love.

Description: “Former model turned actor Adrian Lee can barely list age range ’23-29′ on his resumé anymore nor stand his life of empty social events and appearances, meaningless roles and casual partners. When he meets Alexander Skizetsky by clever arrangement of his agent, the enigmatic yet infinitely attractive Russian kindles a little light of hope in his aching heart. Yet even the beginnings of a friendship and love beyond his wildest dreams cannot assuage a life spiraling out of control.

The long estrangement from his devout Irish Catholic parents and family and the dark secrets they all share combine to drive him to the brink of despair, though Alexander is determined to stay by his side. After locking away his own memories of betrayal and loss, the Russian had decided never to love again but something in Adrian spurs the noblest intentions in his formerly jaded heart. Returning in pilgrimage to his homeland, he brings Adrian along on a journey of rebirth, revelation and redemption.”

Editorial Pre-release Reviews:

“Your story does what good fiction should do.  It makes me think, makes me feel, allows me to visit different places, and connect deeply with the characters.  It explores real issues that people face….”

“I love descriptive stories that enable me to travel to different places without leaving the comfort of my easy chair. I love using all my senses while reading and getting so totally immersed in a story that the sound of the phone ringing makes me jump. And I love characters so deep that I think about them during the day and dream about them at night.”

“A love story, but not a romance, definitely a gothic feel and one of the most positive portrayals of bisexuality I’ve ever come across in fiction.”

Nancy Ferrer, Outlaw Reviews

“It is an incredible work! You have been able to channel your memories and experiences, create vivid real characters and make something so beautiful out of pain and struggle is the highest meaning of what I believe art is: transforming hurt and becoming healers.

I’ve never read anything like Agony of Joy. There has never been a story that deals with some of the personal issues you are presenting in such an open way. It is inspiring and liberating and needed.”

Ana Christina Caelen, Sound therapist, Musician and Composer

“A well-told story…I admire your tact, and am enthralled by these characters and the world they live in.”

M. Daniel Nickel, Entertainer and Author of The Dashing Mister R


About the Author

Both traditionally and independently published, Red Haircrow is an award-winning author of fiction and non-fiction, poet, private chef and former law enforcement officer of Native American (Chiricahua Apache/Cherokee) descent who lives in Berlin, Germany. They are also a Psychology major and operates the independent publishing label and writer cooperative Flying With Red Haircrow.

Red Haircrow has various poems, shorter works and articles published in magazines like Sword & Saga Press’ American Athenaeum, Sibling Rivalry Press’ Assaracus, Danse Macabre, and Indian Country Today.  A winner in Rainbow Awards 2012 for Best LGBT Biography/Memoir: “Silence Is Multi-Colored In My World.”

Among other things, Red Haircrow enjoys photography, traveling, learning languages and cultures, and is quite active in Native American affairs, life, traditions and history.

Website: Songs of the Universal Vagabond

Red Haircrow on Twitter

Facebook Fanpage: The Redhaired Crow

Goodreads Author’s Page

Amazon Author’s Page

Redhaired Crow’s YouTube Channel

GLBT Bookshelf Page: The Journey of Red Haircrow

Other Works


A Lieutenant’s Love

Convenience Store Romance

Night Shift

Katrdeshtr’s Redemption

The House of Doom, Dreams and Desire

The Coat: Secrets of a Hatcheck Boy

The Angel of Berlin

The Caravaggio and the Swan

We, The Dead


Songs of the Universal Vagabond

Silence Is Multi-Colored In My World

“Spring in Berlin” in Suburban Fool Magazine

Poetry in Assaracus, Sibling Rivalry Press’ Literary Journal

“Big Mama’s Pears” in American Athenaeum, Sword & Saga Press

Other Book Trailers:

The Angel of Berlin

Silence Is Multi-Colored In My World

For those interested, review copies are available upon request, and the author for interviews and other promotional projects. Red Haircrow can be contacted at theredhairedcrow@gmail.com.

2012 in Review at Redhaircrow.com

Considering its my birthday, and despite starting a 2nd week with the flu, I thought I’d share this site’s stats for my general post. A stat that stood out for me? I had visitors from 98 countries: thank you for taking the time to drop by.

No, I don’t have a great number of visitors compared to some, but my blog is about me, my thoughts, observations, etc. as well as the topics I choose to write about, which can certainly be subjective and which the average browser may not be interested in. I appreciate those who have taken the time to learn more about me as well as share their thoughts.

Year highlights 2012:

  • Published Enigma 2: Fighting The Man by Nephylim at Flying With Red Haircrow
  • Published Silence Is Multi-Colored In My World
  • Received Award Best LGBT Biography/Memoir for “Silence”
  • Published  Poetry in Assaracus Magazine by Sibling Rivalry Press
  • Published Contribution in “Varney the Vampire: A Literary Remix”
  • Signed Jeffrey Bolden, up-and-coming enthusiasm author, “All We Know Is Falling”

Songs of the Universal Vagabond has quite evolved from what it once was when I was first published by Dreamspinner and StarBooks Press and began it. A number of authors and readers came out to “see” me, but found I was far different than the average writer in those “genes” who may have been published with which they were familiar, for I kept my same name whatever venue or genre in which I write.  I also didn’t conform to a certain type in a variety of capacities, which caused some to direct negativity my way.

I have, however, been lucky that those who actually take the time to read my words without need to judge, without preconceived  notions or prejudices, and might actually ask a question and await an answer before judging have taken the time to comment here or other locations. I cannot tell you how complicated and disheartening it can be when you have individuals and groups you’ve never even heard of post messages to attack and deride you, yet with friends and new acquaintances, I was able to go over that though my health situation has been very problematic the last two years. This is only a part of the balance of my life, but even if it just online, I treat everyone the same, no one is lesser here to me just because they aren’t standing in front of me. I appreciate you.

Probably Native American topics will be the strongest for me, although the greater number of posts are about living in or being in Germany, which is where I am, yet being native….that goes with me, of course, and colors all I see and experience. That’s a good thing because it gives me greater tolerance, patience and willingness to listen. So…thank you all, each and every one of you, whether you clicked thru for negative or positive reasons: Songs of the Universal Vagabond is part of what I am. This is me, with all its complexities, subjects, themes, ideas and thoughts.

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The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 8,200 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 14 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

A Flash Memoir: The Old Piano Player

Hungarian American Piano Player by Red Haircrow

Hungarian American Piano Player by Red Haircrow

Even before I officially began my studies in Psychology, as you can read in the introduction I worked in law enforcement, not exactly a profession where you think of as officers listening to anyone, but a lot of the time those of us who wanted to, could do so.

For me it was never about moving a vagrant from a certain area because shop owners or businesses wanted him gone, sure I might have to do it, but you could give them a certain dignity. Sometimes, they just wanted someone to listen to them, they wanted to talk and be treated as a human being even if their circumstances had gotten beyond their control. Sometimes, sure it was because of alcohol or drugs, but sometimes it was not having money, or because of a bad time or luck befallen.  Partly why I left that profession was I wanted to help in a different, more practical “on the level” way, and too many officers used their position and power to unnecessarily silence others.

Anyway, this post is about the man I met in the photo. He was ninety-three years old at that time, in 2006. I met him at a Natural History Museum in Atlanta, Georgia, USA. He was a volunteer there. He played the piano in the dining area. He played it beautifully, with such love! His fingers were fluid over the keys in a way his body could not move as he walked.

It was a quiet day at the museum, and only a few people were in the dining area. Most of the tables were empty, and to me, the sound of the piano was soothing as one looked out of the windows into spring sunshine. And then someone started talking. Someone started talking loudly to their children, trying to drown out the music even though you could speak lowly right next to someone and be plainly heard. It was if they were annoyed by Chopin’s etudes, and wanted to make their very Southern accent, strident admonition to their children and generally derogatory remarks about the place in general to be foremost in the room.The piano player kept playing.

If you’ve read in entries like Cold Memories: Germany January 2004 or War Babies or Finding Friends in Finland, I am a listener. Even if I had less time for it, I’ve always found I like to hear people’s stories, what they think, what they have to say or feel they need to say. It doesn’t cost me anything, and if in those moments I can help them feel better or contribute to a measure of joy in the world, that’s good enough for me. It brings me also a pleasure somehow just to see that smile when they think back…

He was Hungarian, he was Jewish. At the rise of the Nazis began, he had been entreated by his family to leave Europe and try to make a life in the USA and since he was male and single, he could carve a place for them and make a landing point others could come to. He had resisted for a while, not wishing to leave his family but finally with his collected and donated savings had found a way out yet he hadn’t been allowed into the USA. They were denying at that point: too many asylum seekers citing problems of growing anti-Semitism the US was not yet believing in the seriousness of, plus he didn’t have anyone to sponsor him.

He said he had wanted to be a police officer. A good one. The US hadn’t let him in but Canada has accepted his petition, and for fifteen years he had worked odd jobs within a Jewish community he had been accepted into. He’d worked as a baker’s assistant, selling newspapers, night cleaning jobs. He had just wanted to live, but as news became more dire about the Jewish people and others in Europe, he said he felt an overwhelming desire to return to help, but couldn’t do that either. He couldn’t bring anyone over as he was, but he had believed that if he could get into the US, the land of golden dreams, he could make his dream come true. He could bring his family over. His parents, cousins and other relatives. That never happened. They were among the millions murdered, whether in concentration camps worked to death, outright slaughtered or worse, before they met their end.

When he’d learned they’d been deported and died, the focus he had to get into the US became his overwhelming commitment. He felt he still had to make that possible. He said it was what kept him alive through all the feelings of guilt that he was still alive, and the depression and rage, the grief and sadness. He had waited to have any family of his own: a wife or children, just to work and save as much as possible. When he finally got the approval, though it had been fifteen long years of application and denials, it was his greatest accomplishment he said.

“Did you not feel bitter?” I asked.

He thought for a moment, fingers still moving over the keys.“I had many more important things to be bitter about, but like those things, I couldn’t do anything about what the official decided except keep trying to do what I could.”

He’d eventually made his way rather improbably to Atlanta, but it was warmer and he said he found the African American community there very friendly and more accepting of his past and situation than some other groups had been, even some of the Jewish communities he’d tried to make contact with. He never married. He said there was a sadness he could never get over within himself, but he loved music and playing the piano and making people happy if he could.

He said he had volunteered and been playing at the museum for several years. When I remarked on the, what I considered rude or ignorant “guests”, he just shrugged and kept smiling his little smile. He didn’t do it for them he said, per se. He did it for a purpose: to have someplace to go during the day, a schedule, a place to be. He said he did it for people like me. It might be one out of a dozen who actually stopped to say, “Thank you” or one out of a hundred who stopped to actually chat for a while. That small percentage, just like the ones who escaped or were liberated from Auschwitz or Sachsenhausen were enough for him he said.

That was six years ago. I would imagine he might have passed by now, but I wouldn’t put it past his determination and strength to still be making his way on his walker to that piano in the dining room of the museum café and sharing the good parts of his memory and lessons from far away Hungary with those who took the time to listen and appreciate.

When I asked to take his photo, he was estatic and posed for me, and we talked more as he had finished for the day and we headed towards the door.

Here’s to you, wherever you are: having joined your family finally or still waiting. You made that day special for me, thank you. I will never forget it.

Another blog post about an older piano player I met in Berlin, listened to his playing and learned his story: War Babies.