Spanner Jack by Keith Melton (a free serialized online novel)

Spanner Jack

How can you heal, when the monsters won’t leave you alone?

Brenna McClain, an unlicensed engineer and Jack-of-all-trades, has carved out a place for herself working with Dr. Annabel Price on a highly unorthodox, highly dangerous project. The job keeps her wrench busy, and food in her dog Tau’s dish. She doesn’t think they have much of a chance to open a wormhole to the nexus city of Entropy from Earth, even under the guidance of a shadowy benefactor referred to only as the Emissary. Then the box arrives, hiding a horror inside that she’d gate-jumped across dimensions to escape. Something that had stolen her legs from her when she’d been a girl…

She soon finds herself targeted by a relentless hunter who “births” his own monsters to track her. Mounting evidence and the mayhem can only mean that someone close to the project is a traitor who will shed any amount of blood to make certain the interdimensional gates remain closed forever…

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three


Chapter Four

UPDATE 7/2/2013

Chapter Four is live. I apologize. I meant to have this out in June, but ye olde Evil Day Job had other ideas. This is a Brenna and Tau chapter. I’m a little worried that the made up terms/creatures/places and strange names are making this story hard to follow. I’m trying to draw out the mystery and questions without losing people…

UPDATE 5/10/2013

Chapter Three is live, and here’s the villian. Brenna better run fast.
Chapter Four will go live in June.

UPDATE 5/4/2013

Next chapter is live. This one is a little shorter than the first. Initially, chapter two contained the introduction to the bad guy in the latter half, but it ended up a bit too long. Chapter 3 will contain the bad guy scene (the creepy thing lurking inside the van…duhn duhn DUHN!) Since Chapter 3 is 95% complete, I’ll be posting it next Friday, 5/10/2013.

General info:

Now for something completely different.

It has been a long time since I’ve published any of my writing. True, I have several novel projects in various stages (two of them finished, awaiting editing, and one being rewritten), but no new book in stores to point at and say: “I just wrote that!” In recent months, this unfortunate fact has led to me feeling more and more like a ghost. A digital ghost, haunting some forgotten corner of the Internet.

And that’s sad.

So anyway, I decided to try an experiment, because what the hell, ghosts should be able to do what they want. I’m going to write a novel called Spanner Jack, chapter by chapter, and post it on this website/blog-type-thing. It will be available under a Creative Commons license (Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License to be exact). When it is complete, I’ll have it professionally edited, a professional cover created using awkward, plastic CGI people—ha, I kid—then have it formatted into an ebook and send it off into the electronic book wilderness while singing “Born Free.”

Also, I feel like giving back to my massive fan base of three, possibly four people completely unrelated to me. One of those people asked when I’d have new stuff. I was so flattered and simultaneously crushed by guilt that here I am, posting new stuff. For those who might contend that writing should never be given away for free, never never, I reply that this is also practice for me as a writer. I’m allowing others to watch as I create this book, trying to hone my writing skills, attempting to fine-tune the pacing of a speculative fiction thriller to make it both exciting and enjoyable. I rather think of this endeavor as ice sculpting in the park. With chainsaws.

Fair warning

This is a work in progress. This novel is being written chapter by chapter, so early events may face some version of retconning. It will also be edited/changed on the fly. I’ve done my best to present relatively clean prose, but a professional editor has not yet worked magic upon it, and thus the chapters may contain the occasional stumble or outright failure. I hope to publish a chapter per month, but due to other writing deadlines, cannot say exactly where in the month the birth of a new chapter will fall.

Feel free to leave comments after the chapter if you’d like. Also feel free to point out errors. Any commenter who points out a legitimate error/etc will, if she/he so desires, be mentioned in the book’s acknowledgements as thanks for the help (you’ll need to include at least a valid email to contact you–I won’t sell these or spam you or any shady shenanigans like that, or you can remain anon if you so desire). Likewise feel free to comment on things you liked/disliked. Don’t feel pressured to say positive things. I’m checking the fabled author ego at the door so readers will feel free to be frank and honest.

Warning: Spanner Jack contains profanity and action/violence. It’s safe to say it rolls along in the R-rated category, likely a “soft” R-rating. The book is licensed under the Creative Commons, but cannot be resold by anyone other than the copyright holder, also known as…(fanfare)…Keith Melton!

Spanner Jack

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four Coming in June!

Creative Commons License
Spanner Jack by Keith Melton is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.


3 thoughts on “Spanner Jack by Keith Melton (a free serialized online novel)

  1. Pingback: Spanner Jack: Chapter Two | KeithMelton's Blog

  2. Pingback: Spanner Jack: Chapter Three | KeithMelton's Blog

  3. Pingback: Spanner Jack: Chapter Four | KeithMelton's Blog

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