Monday, May 30, 2011

New Kismet Book #2: Blood Therapy

(This is not my cover. It's just a photo. Too bad they couldn't do a better job with the blood!) I think I've got a handle on the broad outline for the new book #2, tentatively called Blood Therapy (I know that was going to be the title of book #3, but it seemed appropriate for this book. The previous book #2, formerly called Dark Harvest, will come out later in the series, rewritten/expanded, with a new name.).

It's actually a blast to be able to slow things down, and go back to my original ideas for the series. As important as the romance elements are to the books -- and Devereux will always be one of the major players -- it's really Kismet's story. Her transformation. Her life in the surreal world of vampires. She'll have lots of experiences of all kinds. This new book #2 will take place about 2 months after the end of The Vampire Shrink. I'm kicking my own butt daily to keep on a schedule, to be disciplined enough to write a certain number of words everyday, even if it's after I crawl home from my day job. I appreciate all the crit partners who help hold my nose to the grindstone.

The folks at Jo Fletcher Books/Quercus are working madly on the cover for the UK version of The Vampire Shrink. I'll post it as soon as I have it!

I'm going to have a huge contest to celebrate the release of the UK version of the updated The Vampire Shrink this September. Then I'll have another contest when I find out the release date for the North American version. Stay tuned for details.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Another step

I turned in the UK proofs for the rewritten/expanded version of THE VAMPIRE SHRINK and will go through the USA proofs asap. I'm down with the flu. Or something. No energy. Feeling wiped. I hate when that happens! Anyway, I'm going to try to gather my wits to work on the broad outline for the new book #2. Wish me luck!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Guest Blogger: Amber Polo

Paranormal Research

Once upon a time, when I was a young librarian, I believed everything could be found in books. Now it's tempting to believe everything is available online. The best research is a combination of books, internet and experience.

When I started writing Romancing Rebecca, I knew this paranormal romance was going to be funny and set in Sedona. What could be funnier than a woman who falls for two men in the same body? So, I created my hero as a trance channeler with a problem - welcome and unwelcome entities take over his body. Actually, the plot is kind of ordinary by Sedona standards where shop clerks miss work because they’re out on Bell Rock waiting for an alien space ship.

I’d been around a lot of psychics and spiritual types, but I’d never seen someone channel. I did some Internet research, then headed to the Sedona Public Library to select a variety of books from their shelves on channeling, from the popular Seth books to some how-to-do-it guides. I sampled, read, and listened to audiotapes to obtain a feel for voice and language used by channelers.

Books and tapes were helpful, but I still felt I was writing from second-hand knowledge. The Well Red Coyote, my favorite Sedona bookstore, hosted a local author who was billed as a channeler. When Summer Bacon, a slight blond, went into a deep trance and turned into a believable fat old man who died in 1922, I was impressed.

I signed up for her channeling workshop and watched Summer go into two more trances and heard her discuss how she became a channeler. Finally I purchased her book, This School Called Planet Earth, and a DVD, “The Incredible 10 Year Anniversary Open Session.” The DVD was the best. I could replay ten historical entities entering her body in a short period and watch the physical changes. I felt like I was there and, after seeing her go into trances, I was certain the video wasn’t a fake. I was ready to write the channeling scenes for
Romancing Rebecca.

I also did historical research for an old diary, remembered my trips to the Caribbean, and consulted with a friend who was an intellectual property attorney to make sure my heroine’s career sounded authentic. And I HAS to have lunch at the luxury resort in Sedona where most of the story takes place. Sometimes research is exhausting.

Read excerpts to Romancing Rebecca and check out my other books and free reads at:

And read interviews with all subgenres of fantasy authors on my blog Wordshaping:

Thanks, Lynda, for inviting me to Paranormality.
It was fun.
Leave a comment (with your email address) for a chance to win a copy of Flying Free
Can a meat eating Texas advertising woman find love with a vegetarian Buddhist and get her pilot's license despite interference from her wacky Arizona airpark neighbors?

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Another Step Closer

I finished my edits for the revised version (this first one is the UK version) of The Vampire Shrink and turned them in. The biggest challenge for me was wrapping my head around the differences (many) between American writing and UK/European writing. My editor sent back a few changes, and -- as far as I know -- it's a book. It will now be typeset and sent back to me as galleys. The release date is on Amazon as September 1, 2011. I'm anxious to see what focus they decide to give the cover. It sounded like they were leaning more in the direction of suspense. But, hey! It's all fun. My editor (Jo) and I will be talking on Sunday about book #2. Yikes. I wonder how extensive the changes will be!!

This castle reminds me of the site for The Vampires' Ball in my book.

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Guest Blogger: Marc Vun Kannon

Vampires v. Werewolves

If you ask your average paranormal author (author of paranormal stories, that is, not authors who are paranormal), you’ll probably be told that vampires make better characters. They’re mostly human-ish, after all, capable of thought, speech, deliberate action, while werewolves are sometimes human and then, at the same time they get to be interesting they turn into unthinking ravenous brutes. Bummer for the plot, dude, unless we spice up their human selves with pack structure politics and/or sexual strangeness to keep things interesting.

If you ask Joseph Marquand, hero of my soon-to-be-released novel St. Martin’s Moon, what the difference between vampires and werewolves is, he’d tell you it was that werewolves exist and vampires don’t. Once upon a time they made werewolf movies too, but that was before they turned into documentaries. Before he became Earth’s greatest werewolf hunter.

St. Martin’s Moon is set in the future, a time when space travel is a reality and men have established numerous outposts in various bases, colonies, and planets of the solar system. A government of sorts has been established, Special System Services, whose operators do only what they must and no more, to maintain the safety and security of these outposts.

Then came the werewolves, or ‘lupes’ as they come to be known. Lycanthropy as the curse of the Space Age. Sounds weird, doesn’t it? I wrote it and I think it’s weird.

Science fiction and mystery get along well together. The book that gave me the idea was both, but somehow when I read the blurb the notion of a werewolf popped into my head, and they do not go so well together with either SF or mysteries. The reason for this explanations. Both SF and mystery require them, paranormals don’t, in fact they almost seem to do better without them. Fortunately paranormals don’t actually require the absence of explanations, otherwise I’d have had a real hard time just writing the book, not to mention trying to describe it afterward. I just needed to find a link, something to connect a paranormal curse to a lunar colony, and eventually I found one.

I almost didn’t. Write the book, that is. And I never have managed to describe it. It would be a paranormal romance except that Marquand falls in love with the woman, and not the lupe she turns into. The werewolves are classic monsters, not characters, not heroic in any way, although most of them aren’t entirely monstrous either. It would be a science fiction romance except for the werewolves. They do get explained, after a fashion, but since the explanation depends on the ghosts, that doesn’t help much.

Oh yes, the Moon is haunted, did I forget to mention that part?

Like many writers, I started when a story came along and decided that I should write it. Don't ask me why. Others followed, until now I'm afraid to go out of the house with a recorder or notebook in my hand. But I show them, I refuse to write the same story twice!

Coming 5/2011: St. Martin's Moon
The Moon is haunted, but the werewolves don't know that!

Mark will give away an e-copy of St. Martin's Moon to one commenter. Leave your email address in your comment and Mark will select a winner this week.

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Pikes Peak Writers Conference

Just got back from the Pikes Peak Writers Con, which was great. My friend Esri Allbritten and I drove down from Boulder and had a marvelous time. Esri is such a friendly, social (incredibly dear) woman who drags me out of my mental/emotional cave and encourages me to make contact with more people than I'm usually inclined to connect with. Her new book, Chihuahua of the Baskervilles, releases from St. Martin's Minotaur this July. It's a humorous mystery. Cool cover, eh?

I think my favorite part of the con was the workshop and the keynote speech by author John Hart. Down-to-earth and very witty. I am looking forward to reading his books.

The talk was all about the changes in publishing and the future of e-books. Everyone agreed this is a marvelous time to be an author.

Wish I could write more, faster!