Welcome to my semi-annual newsletter.

I am happy to announce STRIKE PRICE has just been published by L&L Dreamspell! It is available as an e-book or in print from all of your favorite bookstores. I hope you will buy a copy. While the print edition is more expensive, it contains authentic Cherokee syllabary font not available to ebooks.


In Strike Price, up-by-the bootstraps executive Lynn Dayton and Cherokee elder Jesse Drum must call on their fragile trust of one another, the newest forms of data analysis, the old code of the Cherokee syllabary, and their own physical daring to stop saboteurs’ attack on a multi-billion-dollar oil target.

If you are in the Dallas area, I hope to see you at my signing at Barnes & Noble benefitting the Friends of the Dallas Public Library on Saturday, June 22nd. If you are in Oklahoma, swing by Brace Books in Ponca City on Saturday, June 29th. More events and their details will be posted on the events section of my website.


During the last eight months I read twenty-eight books. I highly recommend Patriot’s Blood by Richard Holcroft. Its scenes are so factual readers will find themselves reaching for newspaper stories of the Oklahoma City bombing. For a dip into true, laconic, and humorous Texana, try The Grave on Peckerwood Hill by Gary Vineyard and definitely look at the book trailers for both authors.

New York Times best-selling author Michael Ennis kindly gave Strike Price a cover recommendation. His book, The Malice of Fortune, has received widespread praise. I enjoyed losing myself in fifteenth-century Italy.

I also appreciate the cover recommendation from true-crime author and double-Edgar-winner Carlton Stowers. He has written about the Dallas Cowboys, and about real Texas, dirt to sparkle. I recommend Death in a Texas Desert.

Many thanks to thriller author Janie Freveletti for her tweet on the launch of the ebook edition of Strike Price and to University of Texas risk professor Dr. Alain Bensoussan for his cover recommendation.

I read many books I liked the last several months: Power Down, by Ben Coes—who is better than many at describing the energy business excepting his premise of US overreliance on oil from a platform offshore Colombia—The Innocent, by Taylor Stevens, The Dinner by Herman Koch with its increasingly alarming narrator, Midnight House by Alex Berenson, who always nails his research, The Last Man by Vince Flynn, The Black Box by Michael Connelly, Spiral by Paul McEuen—winner of ITW’s debut thriller of the year–the well-plotted and all-too-current Broken Harbor by Tana French, and the creepy Under the Skin by Michael Faber.


In the last eight months at Starks Energy Economics (SEE) I had three articles published by Seeking Alpha on individual companies: a Bakken producer, Kodiak Oil and Gas; a railcar supplier, Trinity Industries; and an oilfield services and accommodations supplier, Oil States International. All are available free on the Seeking Alpha website. At the SEE website, I reviewed production in the North Dakota Bakken field, the unforeseen new phenomenon of crude-by-rail and how it benefits refiners, the feasibility of producing oil from California’s Monterey Shale, detailed analysis of the US west coast and gulf coast refining regions, and the growth in west Texas’ Permian Basin. The free quarterly update for the first quarter of 2013 focused on the paucity of refineries on the US east coast, despite its significant demand for gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel.

According to a story by Kevin Begos of the Associated Press, the EPA announced that it has “dramatically” reduced its estimate of much natural gas (methane) leaks during production of natural gas. This reduces climate change concerns and clears the way for additional drilling. The revision came even though natural gas production has grown by forty percent since 1990 because drillers have controlled leaks with better gaskets, maintenance, and monitoring, and are incentivized to do so by the recovery of more product to sell.

Until the autumn,
L. A. Starks

Fiction (in story order) by L. A. Starks

13 Days: The Pythagoras Conspiracy (Lynn Dayton Thriller #1), by L. A. Starks

  • Print ISBN 978-1-933285-45-0, published by Brown Books Publishing Group, May 2006.
  • E-book ISBN 978-1-60318-357-4, published by L&L Dreamspell, October 2010.

Short stories on Amazon Kindle

  • “Robert and Thérèse Guillard: Choices” involves an alternate subplot for 13 DAYS’ Parisian antagonist and how it feels to fly in a wingsuit. 2007. ASIN: B003NE6D74.
  • “A Time for Eating Wild Onions” introduces two key characters in the second Lynn Dayton book, STRIKE PRICE. The tragedy that befalls them profoundly shapes the next generation. 2007. ASIN: B003NE6DGA.

Gumbo Filé,” in Dreamspell Nightmares anthology, edited by Lisa René Smith introduces characters in the second and the third Lynn Dayton books thrown together under excruciating pressure.

  • Print ISBN 978-1-60318-150-1, published by L&L Dreamspell, October 2010.
  • E-book ISBN 978-1-60318-151-8, published by L&L Dreamspell, October 2010.

Strike Price

  • E-book ISBN 978-1-60318-506-6, published by L&L Dreamspell, April 2013.
  • Print ISBN 978-1-60318-505-9, published by L&L Dreamspell, May 2013.