The Hook: Superposition by David Walton

April 10, 2015

Superposition cover

The Hook:

I should have known better than to let him in.  Brian Vanderhall showed up on my doorstep in the falling snow wearing flip-flops, track shorts, and an old MIT T-shirt, the breath steaming from his mouth in little white gusts.  It would have saved me a lot of trouble if I had slammed the door in his face, never mind the cold.  Instead, like a fool, I stepped aside.

David Walton writes:

Some stories start with a bang: an explosion, a death, a fire, or an arrest.  Others start more subtly, perhaps even with an event the character himself doesn’t realize will be momentous.  Either way, a story almost always begins with the moment everything changes for the main character.  It’s the spark that kicks off all the action and danger in the rest of the book.  The point when, whether the characters recognize it or not, their problems begin, and there’s no going back.

In Superposition, it’s the moment Jacob Kelley opens the door.  Before an hour is past, the man he lets in will have demonstrated an unsettling new technology and fired a gun at Jacob’s wife.  But although he doesn’t know it, it’s the moment he opens the door and steps aside that turns his life upside-down forever.

That’s why I think this first paragraph works as a hook, despite its relative simplicity.  A man comes to the house; his friend lets him in.  Not much to it, on the surface.  But there are clues to the reader that something more sinister is afoot.  For example, Vanderhall is badly dressed for the weather, as if he ran out into the snow with no time to throw on shoes or a coat.  Why?  Was he afraid?  Of what?  Also, the narrator says that he regrets letting him in (“like a fool, I stepped aside”), implying that there is trouble coming.  There’s also the suggestion that Vanderhall has been trouble in the past (“I should have known better”).

These clues work together to give the reader a sense of unease, of unsolved mystery, of trouble to come.  That trouble won’t take long to materialize–before the day is over, Vanderhall turns up dead and Jacob is arrested for his murder, and a relentless quantum intelligence attacks Jacob’s family.  I hope you’ll consider picking up a copy, and reading what happens next!

Buy Superposition on Amazon

About the author:

David Walton is the author of the newly released novel Superposition, a quantum physics murder mystery with the same mind-bending, breathless action as films like Inception and Minority Report.  His other works include the Philip K. Dick Award-winning Terminal Mind, the historical fantasy Quintessence (Tor, 2013) and its sequel, Quintessence Sky.  You can read about his books and life at


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Dark Expanse: Surviving the Collapse is out today

March 20, 2014

Dark Expanse cover

The anthology of space opera stories set in the universe of the Dark Expanse video game is out on Amazon today.

Here’s the table of contents:

DARK EXPANSE: Surviving the Collapse

Edited by Alex Shvartsman and William Snee

Castles in the Sky by Nancy Fulda
Dominoes Falling by Alex Shvartsman
The Ten Suns by Ken Liu
Betrayal, Clear as Kanzai Glass by Deborah Walker
The Price of Escape by David Walton
Hellfire Unleashed by Simon Kewin
Breaking Down by Michael Haynes
They Cannot Scare Me With Their Empty Spaces by Deborah Walker
A Small and Secret Freedom by Matt Mikalatos
Lightspeed Back to You by David Wayne
Escape from Planet Error by Michael Greenhut
Jump by Deborah Walker
Loud for All the Stars to Hear by Alex Kane
To Soar on Winds of War by David Wayne
Fires of Night by Alvaro Zinos-Amaro
Gorlack the Destroyer’s All You Can Eat Adventure by Robert L. Russell
Ghost Ship by Nancy Fulda
The Shadow Conspiracy by Nancy Fulda

Pick up a copy. It costs less than a Subway foot-long!


Announcing Dark Expanse anthology TOC

February 25, 2014

Dark Expanse cover

Announcing the table of contents and cover for Dark Expanse: Surviving the Collapse, edited by yours truly and William Snee.

This is a collection of 18 short stories set in the universe of the Dark Expanse video game.

  1. “Castles in the Sky”” by Nancy Fulda
  2. “Dominoes Falling” by Alex Shvartsman
  3. “The Ten Suns” by Ken Liu
  4. “Betrayal, Clear as Kanzai Glass” by Deborah Walker
  5. “The Price of Escape” by David Walton
  6. “Hellfire Unleashed” by Simon Kewin
  7. “Breaking Down” by Michael Haynes
  8. “They Cannot Scare Me With Their Empty Spaces” by Deborah Walker
  9. “A Small and Secret Freedom” by Matt Mikalatos
  10. “Lightspeed Back to You” by David Wayne
  11. “Escape from Planet Error” by Michael Greenhut
  12. “Jump” by Deborah Walker
  13. “Loud for All the Stars to Hear” by Alex Kane
  14. “To Soar on Winds of War” by David Wayne
  15. “Fires of Night” by Alvaro Zinos-Amaro
  16. “Gorlack the Destroyer’s All You Can Eat Adventure” by Robert L. Russell
  17. “Ghost Ship” by Nancy Fulda
  18. “The Shadow Conspiracy” by Nancy Fulda

This book will premier on Amazon in March 2014.