Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Tuesday Guest Post: Nerine Dorman

In a nutshell, The Namaqualand Book of the Dead is a story about obsessive love, and the lengths ChloĆ«, a young woman, will go to find out the truth behind her lover’s death. It’s also partially a travelogue, an inner and outer journey. Set in South Africa, the tale unfolds partially in the sometimes harsh but mostly beautiful Namaqualand, in a small West Coast village called Lambert’s Bay. I hope to share some of the magic of the landscape to those who wonder about this southern African region and its people.
One place that isn’t nearly as magical as our West Coast, is Sunrise Lodge. This guest lodge is based on a real venue in Cape Town, a pay-by-week “backpackers” (and I use the term very loosely) in the city. A friend of mine used to board there and it’s the arse-end of accommodation in the Mother City. It really is as bad, if not worse, than how I’ve described it in the novella. The lodge frightened me deeply, and it’s one of these buildings that beg for some sort of literary memorial. The people who live there are either refugees from central and northern Africa, or they are people who have nowhere else to go but down.
My chosen settings begs for some sort of supernatural oddities, and while there is a paranormal element to this tale, I don’t place a huge amount of emphasis on creatures. I’ve always wondered about writing a story from the point of view of someone who is largely ignorant of the supernatural, and that’s where ChloĆ« comes in. Her world slowly takes a turn for the strange, with a growing realisation of the horror happening around her. On top of that, I’ve always fantasised about how supernatural beings would behave in South Africa, with all its sunlight and already precarious social situations.
As always, I feel there aren’t a hell of a lot of paranormal stories in non-US settings, and I feel South Africa has a lot to offer readers in terms of an exotic environment with enough touchstones of familiarity (we are a Westernised African nation) so that readers will not be completely out of their depth with some of the terms.
So, if you’re looking for an adventure in Africa, my novels offer just that, with enough weirdness to satisfy those who’re after things that go bump in the night. And, if you loved The Namaqualand Book of the Dead I have more planned. I recently finished an urban fantasy novella entitled What Sweet Music They Make, which I’ll be revising in March. I can say this much: my vampires don’t sparkle, and they’re generally bad for your health.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Invasion of the Plot Bunnies

Seems I've been remiss about posting lately. Not that I haven't been working. :-) Finished the second draft of the Zaphkiel novel and am currently getting ready to work on the third. I'm not sure if I'll have it ready for Angry Robot since the March 31 deadline is looming. However, I do have something to submit to other publishers or agents and that's what matters.

I'm currently plotting my Script Frenzy project: Twelve Angry Men meets Feast. (Okay, you can all stop groaning. For the record, I like Twelve Angry Men. I've seen the movie and read the screenplay.) The still untitled horror screenplay is pure escapism. I've got 30 days in April to write a 100 page screenplay and I have jury duty. Of course there's no connection... (Looks off and whistles innocently.)

As if Script Frenzy weren't enough, I'm involved in a 50k writing challenge through one of my writing groups. I'll probably do that in May. Finally came up with an idea for a steampunk story involving a vampire in Victorian Louisville. Since the story involves steamboats, guess what I'll be doing in my spare time. Yep. Research. But Louisville's nick name is River City.

Dare I mention the murder mystery I'm also lobbing about in my skull? This is what I get for getting caught up in the frenzy known as March Madness. Go Wildcats! :-) But yeah, I've been wanting to write a murder mystery and this time I have a title but no plot as of yet. (Okay, someone's murdered but that's about the extent of that.)

If you're palming your faces and wondering just what the hell am I thinking, have no fear. I'm one of those writers who lets ideas simmer in the back of my subconscious. In the meantime, a 275 page draft of the untitled Zaphkiel Project awaits my attention.

Back to work.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Winner of Teresa D'Amario's Tigress By the Tail ...

Congratulations, Kim Bowman! (Round of applause.)

And thank you to Teresa D'Amario for guest blogging and showing us an awesome book video trailer.

Happy reading, Kim!

Monday, March 7, 2011

"Read an E-Book Week"

What E-Book are you going to read in celebration of "Read an E-book Week"? From March 6 to March 12, readers are encouraged to read a digital book and learn more about E-Publishing.

I first learned about E-Books when I started reading Dear Author, a blog site dedicated to book reviews and industry news. In fact, it was a review on Dear Author that led me to read my first E-Book. That was James Buchanan's Personal Demons (MLR Press), a book I've read twice and highly recommend, along with the Taking the Odds series.

Not only has E-Publishing introduced me to new authors, it's given me a chance to be published. Death Sword is strictly digital in format. I tend to write short novels and since many E-Publishers accept shorter works, this gives me the opportunity to submit my work. (I'm also glad to see opportunities with the small presses, given the publishing industry is in such a flux.)

Anyway, hope you find an E-Book to read this week. There are many available from publishers like Lyrical Press, Carina Press, Samhain, Ellora's Cave, Etopia Press, MuseItUp Publishing and more. And you can read erotica, paranormal romance, fantasy, science fiction, mystery, horror, etc.  

As for me, I have a few ideas of what's going on my TBR list. :-)

Happy reading!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Tuesday Guest Post: Teresa D'Amario

Tigress By The Tail, By Teresa D'Amario

Lance is a Wizard. He’s not a great wizard, but he’s all right. Descended from a long line of wizards, his brothers taunt him for being slow to learn. And as the youngest, it’s his due course to accept such teasing. Life is good, and normal. For a wizard that is.

Cassie is a Shifter. A tigress to be exact. Raised by her father after her mother’s death she’s as well adjusted as any shifter can be, and still live in the human world, hiding who and what she is.

Bliss comes to a screeching halt the night Satanist kidnap Cassie and her best friend to use as sacrifices to bring forth their Dark Lord. When Cassie literally collides into Lance, she begs him to help them escape their captors, despite the dangers. The couple work together to save the life of Cassie’s friend, only to discover a shocking passion driving them closer together at a time when both should be devastated. But when Lance overhears Cassie’s father threaten his life, he heads for the hills. Cassie follows, determined to clear up the confusion. But evil is still afoot and Cassie is taken by a secret government organization dedicated to the eradication of all things magick. Is Lance willing to put his life on the line for a woman he believes is out to kill him? Especially when he realizes the organization that’s taken her, is the one he works for?

First, Pam, thank you so much for having me here on your blog. It's such an exciting time in the world of publishing. Ebooks have taken off in more formats than we could ever have imagined, and well, Pam and I both have new releases. What can be more fun than that?

I'm so darned excited it's not even funny. For those who don't know, back in 2008 I had a great little book published called The Moon: Tigress by the Tail. It was published in both ebook and print by Tease Publishing. I love Tease, but for some reason, my book didn't get the play that I wanted it to. Sales were low despite the awesome success of SheWolf, published by Freya's Bower. It wasn't the book - reviews were ravingly good. But at the time, the new small press was just getting it's feet wet in the rushing river of epublishing. Later, I would take my rights back, in hopes of a future re-issue of the book.

Well, that time has arrived! Absolutely! Tigress By The Tail has been re-edited, with new scenes and new characters added! Inspired by a friend of mine, a character came on the scene to keep Jack, Cassie's father, occupied while she was busy being kidnapped and experimented upon. After all, no Were-Tiger in his right mind is going to ignore that his daughter has disappeared. So what HAS Jack been up to? You'll have to read The new version of Tigress By The Tail to find that out. But I thought I'd give you a little taste.

He didn't knock, but went right in his daughter's home. The home that just hours before he'd found her kissing a strange human. He'd wanted to kill the boy, right then and there. But then the young man had tried to step between Jack and Cassie, and while that angered him then, it also made him respect him.

At the time he hadn't known Lance knew he was a shifter, but now that he did, he decided he respected the boy even more. He had the feeling the only reason he'd stepped down was the way Cassie looked at him.

He glanced at Inez as the door closed behind them. Beads of rain rested on her hair, like tiny diamonds. He brushed them away for her, and her eyes widened in surprise.

"Rain water."

She nodded, and straightened her skirt again, her eyes ducking, a soft smile curving on her lips. "Thank you."

He leaned closer, wishing he could kiss her now. “You’re welcome,” he whispered into her ear. She shuddered, and he smiled. This was starting to feel strange. He was no young cub on his first date, yet he couldn't seem to decide what to say to break the ice. This was unlike him.

Yes, Jack finds someone very special during this time.

And just because I'm a highly visual person, here's a quick look at the new Trailer for Tigress by the Tail:

So tell me, have you ever read a character in a book and wished the author had gone deeper with them, even though they weren't the hero or heroine of the book? And I don't mean one you know will eventually get their own book. One that's just a small part of the book, but somehow that character captured your full attention? That's what happened with Jack. So many people asked for more of his story, that I decided, when given the opportunity, I would add a bit more about his future. Tell me about the character you wanted to know more about, and one lucky commenter will win their own e-copy of Tigress By The Tail.