“Have you been happy?” Julie asked.

“Of course,” I said, not noticing the tense she’d used.

“Even having to hide?”

“That may have been the best part.” I’d hidden myself pretty well, I thought. New country. New name. New hobbies. A job that let me get by without drawing on family accounts. “Well, second best,” I said, reaching to draw her close.

The door opened and three men came in. “Quite a little love you’ve got here,” father said.

“Sorry,” Julie said, her face against my chest.

I shared some preliminary images of the cover of my new book a couple of months ago, but here’s the official cover:

Cover of A Classic Beginner's Mistake by Philip Brewer

The book comes out tomorrow in ebook form, and you’ll be able to order it here:

A Classic Beginner’s Mistake

A brief synopsis:

On a contract to fix a software bug, Trevo is shamed into entering a fencing tournament where poor folks fight for the entertainment of the wealthy. While diagnosing the bug will earn his pay, the insight from his fencing bouts may prove to be worth even more.

There will also be a print version, and that page will have links for buying it—and for buying a signed version, if that’s what you’re into. (Note that it is a short story and not a novel, even though there’ll be a book version.)

Water Dragon Publishing has announced the upcoming publication of a new story by me!

We are excited to announce that we have signed an agreement with author Philip Brewer to publish his story, “A Classic Beginner’s Mistake”, as part of our Dragon Gems short fiction program.


I’ve always been jealous of the sort of successful writer who can afford to design and build their optimal space for writing. But I’ve also read critiques of the idea: A real writer can write anywhere.

So I’m glad to see Cal Newport pointing out that “can write” might be true, and yet fall short:

“Putting professors into stark and spacious modern offices is functional. But is it as conducive to deep thought as the fire-warmed study of the Oxford Don?”

Source: On Vampires and Method Writing – Cal Newport