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Sunday, December 20, 2015

The return of There Will Be War

After a 25-year hiatus, Jerry Pournelle and Castalia House are pleased to announce that the famous military science fiction anthology series, There Will Be War, has been revived with There Will Be War Volume X. This has been a long time in the making, with more than a few challenges and detours along the way, but as a fan of the series from the 1980s, I am absolutely delighted to see it come alive again, although I regret the fact that there is, once more, a genuine need for it in light of current world events.

In many ways, the first nine volumes of There Will Be War have proved to be a chronicle of the Cold War; reading those earlier volumes published in the '80s is a literal education in both the events and the psychologies of that time. We will be fortunate indeed if the challenges described in There Will Be War Volume X, in both fiction and non-fiction terms, prove to be similarly ephemeral, and disappear from history as speedily and as bloodlessly. Unfortunately, some of the contributors to the new volume would appear to be less than entirely optimistic in that regard.

There Will Be War Volume X is 401 pages, DRM-free, and retails for $4.99 on Amazon. The editor, who arguably did his finest job in selecting stories and essays since Volume II, shared some thoughts on the revival of his classic series at Chaos Manor today. Highlights:
There Will Be War Volume X will be on Amazon Monday. We will see where it goes from there. There is already a campaign to boycott the book on the grounds that the publisher is a scoundrel. This is apparently something to do with fan politics and awards. I can only say that it has been a pleasant experience to work with them. I have all the editorial decisions, of course, including story choices.... I find them very competent and helpful.

We also have some good stuff from new authors, who apparently prefer to be in this book rather than in the traditional magazines; I’m a bit flattered. Anyway it’s done. If you like war stories you will like this book
Note to New Release subscribers: if you don't have an email in your inbox tomorrow and you've been having trouble receiving the emails despite being sure that you're a subscriber, get in touch and I'll send you the link to the bonus books. You won't want to miss them!

And one more thing: fans of the series will no doubt be glad to hear that the hardcover omnibus of Vols I and II is very nearly done and will be published in January.

UPDATE: Mr. Pournelle notes that one of the contributors, CDR Phillip Pournelle, USN, was just awarded the Surface Navy Association Literary Award for "The Deadly Future of Littoral Sea Control", which is one of the non-fiction pieces that appears in Volume X.

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66 Comments:

Blogger The Other Robot December 20, 2015 8:49 PM  

Can we still get the bonus books if we, ahhh, ...

Blogger VD December 20, 2015 8:54 PM  

The emails just went out. It's already Monday here. But anyhow, the answer is yes.

Blogger Were-Puppy December 20, 2015 8:58 PM  

I just got a copy from Amazon, it sounds great.

Does this contain tidbits about the kind of wars that are going on today, or is it focusing on Cold War type scenarios?

Blogger The Other Robot December 20, 2015 9:03 PM  

OK, since it is already Monday. I am reading it, and am enjoying it greatly on many front.

It is interesting, however, the the first story, The Man Who Wasn't There, did not realize that the solution to the problem of Moslems in France is to deport them all.

Charles Martel was correct.

Blogger The Other Robot December 20, 2015 9:03 PM  

@3: It does not rehash the Cold War.

There is some pretty strong stuff in it.

Blogger Jemison Thorsby December 20, 2015 9:07 PM  

Thanks for publishing worthwhile content... and in great package deals as well. Best value out there these days!

Anonymous Redjack December 20, 2015 9:52 PM  

Just ordered.

Anonymous roo_ster December 20, 2015 10:01 PM  

Bought. Castalia House is punching way out of its weight class with the quality authors you all manage to publish.

I wonder who is next up to publish with ch: Umberto Eco and Tom Wolfe?

Blogger Elocutioner December 20, 2015 10:14 PM  

FYI, email has deadline listed as December 9th.

Blogger Tallawampus December 20, 2015 10:17 PM  

Got it.

Thanks for bringing Pournelle back both with the reprints and with Vol.X. I'll be buying the hardcover omnibus volumes when they come out. Between Castalia and Baen my reading needs are being met nicely. I'm still boycotting Tor. :)

VFM 0198

Blogger John Cunningham December 20, 2015 10:17 PM  

VFM #424 here-- just got it for my kindle! now to get started devouring it.

Anonymous bluto December 20, 2015 10:17 PM  

Sweet, just in time to have it to read on the flight to see the inlaws next week. Thanks!

Blogger 1337kestrel December 20, 2015 10:41 PM  

I was looking for books the other day and I avoided the one Tor offering that looked interesting. Fortunately I read "Flex" instead.

I'll be reading Volume X over Christmas. Eagerly awaiting the hardback reprints, as I want to have something for the kids to read when there's no more electricity.

Blogger 1337kestrel December 20, 2015 10:41 PM  

... I suppose my new VFM # can't be 1337? No, well, I understand...

Anonymous Leonidas December 20, 2015 10:43 PM  

We also have some good stuff from new authors, who apparently prefer to be in this book rather than in the traditional magazines; I’m a bit flattered.

Frankly, Dr. Pournelle, I'm the one that's flattered. It's an incredible honor to find my name on that list, and I'm very grateful for the opportunity.

Anonymous Dave December 21, 2015 12:30 AM  

Markku you scoundrel!

Got the email I'm buying it now. Please provide cover.jpg when convenient.

Thank you CH & Dr. Pournelle

Blogger Edward Isaacs December 21, 2015 12:35 AM  

Purchased, even though I don't normally read military sci-fi. I just finished the first story and it didn't do much for me (and I had the same thought as @4). I'm wondering if this is going to be one of those volumes where I'm simply not part of the target audience.

Blogger Harold December 21, 2015 12:38 AM  

Just bought it on one click.

Blogger John Morris December 21, 2015 1:07 AM  

Another one that is only available inside Amazon's walled garden. I think I understand the tactical advantage of gaming their sales numbers this way but I simply refuse to play their game. Amazon is NOT a friend, they will eventually make that clear enough. I'll wait, not like I don't have a reading backlog anyway... Probably should reread the old ones too, think I have seven of the original paperbacks.

Blogger grendel December 21, 2015 1:47 AM  

Lol at "Boycott." Like SJWs would normally buy milscifi? Please.

Blogger pdwalker December 21, 2015 2:02 AM  

Purchased

Thanks for that and the bonus content.

Blogger Dave December 21, 2015 2:31 AM  

It is interesting, however, the the first story, The Man Who Wasn't There, did not realize that the solution to the problem of Moslems in France is to deport them all.

Note that story was first published over 10 years ago. Trump was just roundly criticized after calling for a temporary suspension of Moslem immigration.

Deport all Moslems. Talk is cheap. Not only is mass deportation out of the picture; thousands more are coming in daily.

Blogger VD December 21, 2015 3:01 AM  

email has deadline listed as December 9th.

Yeah, ignore that. It's the 23rd, obviously.

Blogger Ripper Madness December 21, 2015 3:13 AM  

I am so stoked! Finally Volume X after all these years. And I am definitely looking forward to reading the bonus books as well. Keep up the great work. This really makes a great start for a great week.

Blogger VD December 21, 2015 3:32 AM  

Another one that is only available inside Amazon's walled garden. I think I understand the tactical advantage of gaming their sales numbers this way but I simply refuse to play their game.

It's not gaming anything. We make considerably more by going exclusive with them, and after 16 months of data to analyze the situation, it is very clear that 95 percent of the book-buying public strongly prefers to buy there. We would LOVE to have been able to establish a viable destination site for book-buyers, and it's not impossible that one day, we will be able to do so.

But the company that ignores the market's preferences out of principle or pride is soon out of business.

Blogger jSinSaTx December 21, 2015 5:24 AM  

Purchased. Hope this clears whatever hurdle is necessary to continue to grow Castalia House. Success and dollars opens doors.

Anonymous Big Bill December 21, 2015 6:22 AM  

Why don't Scalzi and his crew of SJWs do something like Castalia? Do they lack the vision? The drive? The ambition?

Are they slaves to the traditional, old-fashioned author/publisher model of the dead-tree publishing business?

I just don't get it.

You move from success to success, from achievement to achievement, and they just keep falling farther and farther behind.

Or are they just too feminine and passive?

Blogger John December 21, 2015 6:46 AM  

And now I'm back from from Amazon. Bought it. If I go downstairs and root through enough boxes I might turn up some paperback copies of the first series.
Looking forward to reading this one.

Blogger Markku December 21, 2015 6:50 AM  

I just don't get it.

What we are doing, technically, to produce the books requires a very, VERY specific skillset which is not taught at any school, and it's an incredible coincidence that we have someone who can handle each step. The traditional way that is taught at school requires at least five times the manhours per book.

Blogger Hohokam71 December 21, 2015 6:52 AM  

I just finished the first two entries in Volume X, and I am extremely pleased. Between this compilation and Riding the Red Horse, it is good to see an outlet for work that presents thoughtful speculation which points us towards military-related problems that we should be thinking about, as well as just presenting a collection of well-written works to enjoy. If you ever have time to embark upon editing a compliation of quality (non-Pink) regular SF/F work and need help (slush readers), just ask - you have a whole community here behind you. Castalia House is well on its way to re-establishing quality within the SF/F genre. Thank you.

Anonymous VFM0215 December 21, 2015 7:04 AM  

Just purchased. Many thanks again for the outstanding offerings from Castalia. I need to finish Loki first before diving in.

Blogger VD December 21, 2015 7:11 AM  

Why don't Scalzi and his crew of SJWs do something like Castalia? Do they lack the vision? The drive? The ambition?

They lack the implacable cold fury. None of us are doing this with making money as a primary goal. They're poorly paid mercenaries, for the most part. We're Death Commandos.

They also lack the Dread Ilk. Seriously, in 2016, the sheer level of potential volunteer talent here that is gradually transitioning into applied semiprofessional skill is going to start to become apparent. Right now, we're only hitting on one of five cylinders that are gradually starting to come online.

We can, and will, do far, far better than we have so far. Most of what you've seen to date is essentially three complete amateurs learning what they're doing. We have more than twice that many people now involved, and the new guys are much more experienced in their areas of responsibility.

Are they slaves to the traditional, old-fashioned author/publisher model of the dead-tree publishing business?

That too. We are a consciously 4GW quasi-organization.

Blogger Dave December 21, 2015 7:16 AM  

Scalzi already got paid; he has as much interest in starting a publishing house as he does in doing yardwork

Blogger VD December 21, 2015 7:27 AM  

I just finished the first two entries in Volume X, and I am extremely pleased.

Very good. Just wait until you get to the non-fiction. I would say that the non-fiction in Vol X is the best of the series. Overall, only Vol II is definitely better.

Blogger Salt December 21, 2015 7:37 AM  

It's not on my Kindle. Looking forward to reading it.

Blogger Salt December 21, 2015 7:38 AM  

where did that not come from?

Blogger Mr.MantraMan December 21, 2015 7:53 AM  

Just finished Cuckservative, will pick up TWBW today.

I will be pleasantly surprised if the writers move past the default American assumptions of war where they never leave 1945, we certainly need to move on from that mindset.

Anonymous Determinator December 21, 2015 7:54 AM  

I work nights, got confused on the day and bought the book Sunday evening thinking it was Monday evening. I was confused as to how this book could be doing so poorly, but it's jumped considerably in the ranks in just 8-10 hours.

Blogger VD December 21, 2015 8:25 AM  

I was confused as to how this book could be doing so poorly

It's doing very well, actually. Amazon delays the impact of its sales on rank by 24 hours or so.

Anonymous Napoleon 12pdr December 21, 2015 8:47 AM  

"They lack the implacable cold fury. None of us are doing this with making money as a primary goal. They're poorly paid mercenaries, for the most part. We're Death Commandos."

Death Commandos? I thought we were supposed to get the undying affections of unreasonably attractive members of the opposite sex after crushing the Forces of Evil! Heroes Get The Girl! Heroines Get The Guy!

Sheesh. You kids have NO idea how to run a conquest.

Blogger Peter December 21, 2015 9:03 AM  

I've recommended it on my blog:

http://bayourenaissanceman.blogspot.com/2015/12/a-really-important-book-for-troubled.html

I hope that helps to spread the word. E-mail follows.

Blogger James Dixon December 21, 2015 9:04 AM  

> ...and it's an incredible coincidence that we have someone who can handle each step.

Not really, Markku. I'd have been surprised if you hadn't. This type of thing is what we self select for. I'd be trying to take more of a role, but my free time is essentially non-existent between my new job and sideline computer repair jobs.

And Meredith, being a big fan of he original series, has purchased a copy.

Blogger Were-Puppy December 21, 2015 9:20 AM  

@37 Mr.MantraMan

I will be pleasantly surprised if the writers move past the default American assumptions of war where they never leave 1945, we certainly need to move on from that mindset.
---

I think it has.

The first story ties nicely into the recent Paris attacks.

The second ties nicely into China mining Africa for resources.

Blogger Skylark Thibedeau December 21, 2015 9:28 AM  

Scalzi and company are the Janissaries of the international Holtzbrink Publishing Group. They are well taken care of by the Duetsch Caliph until their sales go down anyway and they find big publishing conglomerate book contracts are like pie crusts, made to be broken.

Blogger The Other Robot December 21, 2015 9:57 AM  

It is very clear, however, that the Chinese have become the Evil nation on the earth ...

Blogger tweell December 21, 2015 9:57 AM  

Purchased, and thank you. Christmas early!

SJW's don't build, they subvert, take over and destroy. Castalia House is the antithesis of that.

Blogger The Other Robot December 21, 2015 10:00 AM  

I sent email to two people who might not have otherwise known about this.

Send email to anyone you can think of.

Blogger pdwalker December 21, 2015 10:17 AM  

So far, I have to say it's been very, very good.

Anonymous That Would Be Telling December 21, 2015 10:19 AM  

@45. The Other Robot:

It is very clear, however, that the Chinese have become the Evil nation on the earth ...

Well, not as evil as the DPRK, but how many other countries of any size still maintain their 20th Century network of forced labor camps?

They've also achieved quite a milestone in diplomacy, getting pretty much all their neighbors to band together, including with Japan, to face off against them.

These sorts of things, plus their size, population and economic (which the DPRK is sorely lacking in), make them a default adversary if you're not doing the lower tech, lower level of effort Islam vs. the world thing (and of course they've got their own piece of that action in their west).

Blogger The Other Robot December 21, 2015 10:20 AM  

This is what I wrote last night in an earlier thread:

Some comments on Seven Kill Tiger:

A Mandarin speaker is unlikely to use hak gwai (a derogatory Cantonese word for blacks) and is unlikely to mix Mandarin and Cantonese like that.

Also, I think that it is 大舵手 and not 伟大的舵手.

Other than that, interesting story.

Blogger VD December 21, 2015 10:27 AM  

A Mandarin speaker is unlikely to use hak gwai (a derogatory Cantonese word for blacks) and is unlikely to mix Mandarin and Cantonese like that.

Sadly, that sort of thing was well beyond any editorial capacity to police. I know Cheah Kai Wai is a Cantonese speaker, but I don't know what Shao speaks. Other than English, presumably.

Blogger The Other Robot December 21, 2015 10:45 AM  

The story about the Japanese space ship up against the Chinese fleet was interesting as well.

I think it was wise in that case to use a Chinese name untranslated (Tianlei) as the name of the weapon (bomb pumped laser) because Heavenly Thunder doesn't have the same ring in English.

Cheah Kai Wai's consistency in choosing names for the Chinese fleet was good as well. The carriers were named after regions in China while the escorts were named after cities.

I liked the story greatly but wondered ...

Cheah is the same name as Xie (謝) and people with that spelling tend to come from Malaysia/Singapore in my experience. I think it is a Hakka name.

Blogger VD December 21, 2015 11:00 AM  

I think it is a Hakka name.

Ruh-roh. Is this really the sort of individual we want reading Lind and van Creveld?

The Hakka people have had a significant influence on the course of modern Chinese history; in particular, they have been a source of many revolutionary, political and military leaders.

Blogger Nate December 21, 2015 11:10 AM  

"UPDATE: Mr. Pournelle notes that one of the contributors, CDR Phillip Pournelle, USN, was just awarded the Surface Navy Association Literary Award for "The Deadly Future of Littoral Sea Control","

No doubt the CHORFS will nevertheless assert that everything in it is childish and obviously stupid.

Blogger The Other Robot December 21, 2015 11:10 AM  

In a related note:

Learn Ruby on Rails is a free download on Amazon until December 25.

Blogger Nate December 21, 2015 11:21 AM  

"Bought. Castalia House is punching way out of its weight class with the quality authors you all manage to publish. "

No. CH is not punching out of its weight class. This IS their weight class.

Blogger VD December 21, 2015 11:25 AM  

This IS their weight class.

2016 is going to be fun. I anticipate the looks of dawning horror on various faces when they realize we're just beginning to hit our stride and we are nowhere close to our peak.

Blogger James Dixon December 21, 2015 12:14 PM  

> 2016 is going to be fun

I look forward to it. I may even have some spending money by then.

Blogger The Other Robot December 21, 2015 8:44 PM  

Need a boost ... numbers slipping back a bit.

Anonymous Musashi December 21, 2015 10:19 PM  

Just got it.

VFM#0350

Anonymous Cheah Kai Wai December 22, 2015 6:23 AM  

@Vox

Thanks for accepting my story. I prefer submitting my stories to CH for publication for the very simple reason that I write the kind of stories that prestigious magazines and publishing houses won't accept for publication. Far as I can tell, there's too little diversity and too much killingry in my works to stand a chance of being accepted.

@The Other Robot

I'm glad you liked my story. I am from Singapore, but I'm Cantonese. My surname came courtesy of a Malaysian government official who misspelled my father's surname shortly after Merger.

And as a Cantonese, I am obligated to point out that Cantonese people have contributed significantly in the fields of education, politics, mass media, martial arts, warfare...

On second thought, perhaps that's giving too much away.

Anonymous The other robot December 22, 2015 10:12 AM  

@61: Cheah Kai Wai:

多谢你写那个故事给我们看。

我太太是个从香港来的客家人。

Blogger pdwalker December 22, 2015 12:00 PM  

@61

And the northerners consider their southern, Cantonese cousins to be the trouble makers in China. Or so I've been told.

Blogger Dave December 22, 2015 10:01 PM  

Cheah Kai Wai, your story was definitely worthy of inclusion in TWBWX. Hope to see more from you and CH. In the meantime I'll be taking a look at your books.

I like the audaciousness of your statement: "I daresay that Flashpoint: Titan is the hardest science fiction story ever written by a Singaporean."

Anonymous Cheah Kai Wai December 23, 2015 7:20 AM  

@The Other Robot

不客气。 感谢您的支持。

@pdwalker

I would add that the Chinese diaspora think that mainlanders are loud, rude, egoistic, aggressive louts who need to be taken down several notches. Those who act like the Middle Kingdom is the middle of the universe, especially. At least, that's what I've seen in my exceedingly short life.

@Dave

Thanks. Truth be told, it is an easy statement to make. Singaporeans aren't big on publishing sci fi stories. Or genre fiction, for that matter. Of the Singaporean writers who have written sci fi, I've never seen one make physics and technology the driving forces of a story the way mine did.

Blogger JaimeInTexas December 23, 2015 9:33 AM  

Might this be an opportunity for Castalia House?

Putin and Israel –a complex and multi-layered relationship

The recent murder of Samir Kuntar by Israel has, yet again, inflamed the discussion about Putin’s relation to Israel. This is an immensely complicated topic and those who like simple, canned, “explanations” should stop reading right now. The truth is, the relationship between Russia and Israel and, even before that, between Jews and Russians would deserve an entire book. In fact, Alexander Solzhenitsyn has written exactly such a book, it is entitled “200 years together”, but due to the iron grip of the Zionists on the Anglo media, it has still not been translated into English.
(snip)

http://thesaker.is/putin-and-israel-a-complex-and-multi-layered-relationship/


http://thesaker.is/putin-and-israel-a-complex-and-multi-layered-relationship/

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