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Showing posts from 2011

I Got Your Stocking, Right Here!

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So, it's been a while since we've heard from our good friend Amanda Feral, but that's changing in 2012. It seems that some opportunities might have presented themselves, both on the erotica front penned by the wicked zombie, herself, and stories featuring Amanda, Wendy and Gil. There's nothing set in stone, but the stage is set for some horribly irreverent mayhem.

Until then, why don't you check out Amanda's first erotic effort, the suitably Christmas-y, STOCKING FULL OF COAL? It's funny, naughty as f**k, and above all, weird (check out what Nicole Peeler had to say about the story, here).

Synopsis: Justine Crenshaw is accident-prone. On purpose. It’s the bruises…she can’t live without them, without the pleasure and pain that closely bind her sexuality to her secret obsession. She chooses men who accept her fetish, who seek it out for their own dark designs, even if they don’t understand it. She accepts that. Justine doesn’t need them for anything but a littl…

'Tis the Season For ... Books

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'Tis the season, my elves--the season for book releases!
Here at the League, in addition to putting coal in each other's stockings (not a euphemism) and making lists of enemies and checking them twice, we're also prepping for several new book releases among the ranks. Luckily, the holidays aren't all shame-and-sugar hangovers, they're also about presents. Presents like gift cards and shiny new e-readers. Gift cards that need spending and e-readers that need filling ... filling with books ... by Leaguers.
I think you know where this is going...
Three Leaguers have books coming out on or around January 1. Of course, lay down dates may vary depending on the store of your choice, but for the most part you'll be able to grab these great reads in just one week.
Richelle Mead's SHADOW HEIR Buy it at B&N, Amazon or Indie Bound Blurb: #1 New York Times bestselling author Richelle Mead returns to the Otherworld, a mystic land inextricably linked to our own--and balan…

DRIVING MR. DEAD will be available Tuesday!

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My new novella, DRIVING MR. DEAD, will be available from Audible starting Dec. 27. That's TUESDAY!! The eBook version will be available from Pocket on Jan. 31.

The synopsis is below.

HELL ON WHEELS

After failing as a magician's assistant, a photographer, and most recently, a bride, Miranda Puckett takes a position as a driver for Beeline, Half-Moon Hollow's premiere vampire concierge service.

Miranda's assignment? Driving Collin Sutherland, the world's most fastidious vampire from Washington to Kentucky, so he can deliver a mysterious black case to Council official Ophelia Lambert.

Collin, a paranoid, aristocratic vampire with a debilitating fear of flying, refuses to let the case out of his sight. Miranda needs this time on the road to decide whether to permanently cut her ties with the fiance that had an "emotional affair" with a childhood pal, but Collin’s neatnik tendencies are driving her around the bend. The man acts as if leaving a fast food wrappe…

She's a Mean One, Mr. Grinch

((Cross posted at On Literary Intent))

Yes, I know I should probably be doing a Christmas post, given the proximity to that particular holiday, but I’m not gonna. No way, not gonna make me. ‘Cause honestly, Christmas is my least favorite holiday. I know, you probably think this is going to boil down to a “commercialism at Christmas” rant, but I swear it’s not. What it really amounts to is that I am a lousy gift-giver.

No, I don’t have any trouble picking out presents for people. (well, most of the time) See, I’m smart enough to get a list and much like Rachel in Friends, STICK TO THE LIST. Shopping isn’t my problem. Where I find my downfall is that I’m supposed to WAIT to give these people these totally awesome gifts that I know they want!

What kind of sick, sadistic holiday IS this? “Here, it’s wrapped up all shiny and ribbony, just waiting to be torn asunder and enjoyed! But not yet!” Seriously?

I’m much more of an instant gratification kinda girl. For example: Hubby and I …

Announcements!

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First off, I want to send Juliet Blackwell a HUGE hug for making the New York Times extended list with DEAD BOLT. I'm so excited for her, I could spit!

I hosted a hilarious contest with Juliet in which people could create titles/proposals for the as-yet-unknown genre of Erotic Cozies. The contest is over, but the entries are amazing.

In my own news, I'm happy to announce the creation of Denise Townsend, writer of Selkie paranormal erotic romance. If you like erotic romance and like my books, I think you'll like hers. We're tight. ;-)

Her first book is Ocean's Touch, and it'll be coming out digitally with Samhain December 27th. Click the cover for more information:

For a final treat, I'll leave you with a new band that's totally rocking my world. They're Icelandic, which is always fun. They're Of Monsters and Men, and here's their song Little Talks:



Enjoy and have a happy holiday!

Merry Merry Blog Hop

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I tend to fangirl myself pretty hard sometimes - this year I actually had a set of Christmas cards made up with my characters from A Brush of Darkness.

You can buy a set if you're so inclined...if not, I'm giving some away, along with a bunch of swag - including signed cover flats and bookmarks, trading cards and a stuffed hedgehog.

Yes, a hedgehog.

Why?


Because I own one. And they are awesome. And prickly.

And awesome.

However, I can't give away Tumbleweed, so a stuffed hedgehog it will have to be.

To enter for this fabulous little prize package, you will have to write hedgehog haiku, over at my official author site. (You can go there now, but I won't open for comments until the 16th. However, there are pictures of the swag...and a hedgehog in a sleigh, and that's worth a look-see, right?)

And this is all part of the Mistletoe Madness Blog Hop, which includes a grand prize of a Nook, complete with a lovely bunch of pre-loaded books. (Including A Brush of Darkness…

Having a Foundation

Hallelujah, I remembered to post!

Every single month, I write my day down on my calendar. So why do I sometimes look right at the calendar and still forget to post? No idea.

Being December and all, I considered a holiday-themed post, but I'm already talking Christmas over at Tynga's Reviews. I also considered a brief rant about the The Avengers character posters and how Black Widow is the only Avenger (and the token female) who's showing off her ass, but Carrie Vaughn said it better.

So instead, I'm pulling out an old bit of advice, originally posted three years ago on my blog. It's about having a foundation in your writing. Every July, I attend a local SF/F convention called Shore Leave, and in '08 something said during a writing panel really stuck with me:


I was in a writing panel Saturday afternoon , and one of the writer panelists (Howard Weinstein, FYI) was discussing discipline, which led one of the attendees to mention "inspiration." At which poin…

If you still need holiday cards...

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With Lace and Brocade Our Passions Obeyed

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Even at the holidays, especially at the holidays, the writer's muse can run amuck.
Maybe it's the upcoming release of Burned (A Void City Novel) by J. F. Lewis (hey, I see that guy in the mirror sometimes) at the end of January or the fact that I've been working on two different books set in that universe, but there are times when I'm so in writer-mode that normal everyday things can be rendered horribly funny because I realize how one character or another would react to them.
On the way home from lunch, for example, we were listening to Bing Crosby and David Bowie singing "Little Drummer Boy/Peace on Earth" and this whacked out impatient driver zoomed into the lane behind us, then around and past us... It infuriated my wife... And in glow of that anger, I was struck by the visual of happy Christmas shoppers in a hollywood-like surreal moment, walking down the sidewalks of Void City as Greta, one of my more murderous vampires, drove down the street in Fang, th…

The Confederacy of Nerds

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The Confederacy of Nerds is a grandiose term for a few dudes who take off once in a while to do completely uncool stuff because it's fun. We are well aware that various unwritten codes of manliness dictate that we're supposed to like poker and sports and drive giant trucks, or perhaps hunt down unarmed herbivores with ridiculously high powered weapons, but instead we re-channel our aggressive impulses into role-playing games. Oh yes. We're that kind of nerd: the ten-sided dice kind.  D10s, baby. With faux marble surfaces. Aw yeah!

When the Man gets us down with his rules and schedules and stuff, we flee to a cabin in the mountains, stock it with beer and junk food, and fight some epic battles with periodic restroom breaks. We have this place in Pine, Arizona. Pine looks like this:

Except it doesn't have 80s hair. It just has a lot of ponderosa pine trees, and if you wish to stand in front of one for a picture or for archery practice, I can't think of a better spot.

ALERT: 13 gifts you should NOT get for werewolves this holiday season

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(somewhat reprised from my blog of Christmas past) 


It is not easy to buy gifts for paranormals - especially werewolves. While they are typically polite about accepting items they don't like, quietly returning them when you're not around, some gifts that can upset them greatly, and should be avoided at all costs. Hopefully, this list will help.

Do NOT give your werewolf friends and family the following gifts:
1. Any chia pet in the shape of a canine. Deeply offensive to the werewolf psyche.

2.A Friendship bracelet that you worked really hard on, that the werewolf must never take off, and you'll be really mad if they lose it. Because they will! 3. The complete 5-volume Dog Whisperer DVD set featuring Cesar Millan. A werewolf will instantly rip it apart.
4.Nature's Gift Aromatherapy patchouli-scented bliss candles.

5.Actually, any heavily scented products are poor gift choices for werewolves.

6.Ten-hour video set of the historic Apollo 11 Lunar Landing. This type of close-up n…

The Vampire Wars

Soooooo, my blog is short and sweet today. It was prompted by a picture I wish I could put up again, but have absolutely no clue how to add to this blog. All things tech confound me.
Anyway, on my Facebook page (maybe three weeks or so ago), I posted a pic of ze vampires Lestat and Louie from Interview With A Vampire. It had an effin’ funny caption. We laughed. We commented. We shared. We snarked.
Good times… Well, mostly.
There were a couple of people who got pretty passionate about their love of a particular vampire clan and a little angry with those of us who thought the pic was funny. There was much discussion. Much. Wow, was there discussion :)
Alas, that’s not what this blog is about. What struck me about that pic was the complete loyalty to a fictional group of people. It was steadfast, folks. And even if I don’t necessarily understand it, I certainly respect it. It’s what made the writer of said vampire clan richer than rich. It also renewed interest in vampires and opened a lot o…

Christmas Cat of Doom

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The tree is decorated beautifully. Its nine feet tall. Filled with bows and shiny ornaments and sparkly lights. The family decorated it happily. Putting everything just so, too. The Viking put on the tippy-top ornament and I put on the decorative skirt.

Then came the cat.

There are two cats. The one who is not in trouble because trees with lights and ribbons and dangling objects bore him. Plus, he'd rather nap. Then there is the other cat.

Naughty cat. The terror of holiday trees everywhere. He lounged in the corner under the tree watching the humans create his kitty Disneyland. He was scatted and shushed and chased away from the tree. Our perfect, beautiful tree.

He killed the first ornament within an hour. It was a big, shiny silver wonder ... now a thousand shards. The cat endured a rousing game of "Hiss and Chase" and disappeared.

The humans were lulled into contentment. Eventually they stopped talking and listening to Christmas music and went to bed.

Naughty cat ret…

Best wishes

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We Leaguers are an industrious if pervy lot. And occasionally, one of us hits pay dirt.









In this case, a huge SHOUT OUT to Leaguer Cherie Priest, the High-Priestess of Steampunk who yesterday announced her movie deal of Boneshaker. Just three weeks ago she was in Denver signing at the Broadway Book Mall.


Soon, with luck and our tarnished blessings, she'll be in the position to greet us when we arrive at the gilded gates of her 1% estate, hats in hand, and she'll announce: "Release the hounds."


With the beginning of December comes the end of NaNoWriMo. How did you all do? I made my goal, which was to finish the first draft of a work in progress. A very ugly baby to be sure. But at least I have something to vivisect and reattach parts to. As much as we love NaNoWriMo, good intentions are not enough. They need your help, as in cashola. So dig out those spare coins rattling in your tattered pocket and send them here to keep the NaNoWriMo furnace stoked until 2012.

Holidays at the Harper House or "How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Stuffing."

I have posted one of my favorite weird holiday stories at my blog, Nice Girls Don't Write Naughty Books.

We Got Some Nominees Up in Here!

It's been a banner month for the League of Reluctant Adults.
Romantic Times posted their Reviewers' Choice Award nominees. Dudes, the League scored a bunch of nominations!
Best UF Protagonist: Nicole Peeler's TEMPEST'S LEGACY Jaye Wells's GREEN-EYED DEMON Diana Rowland's MY LIFE AS A WHITE TRASH ZOMBIE Jeanne C. Stein's CROSSROADS
Shapeshifter Romance: Molly Harper's HOW TO FLIRT WITH A NAKED WEREWOLF Michele Bardsley's MUST LOVE LYCANS
Paranormal Romance: Michele Bardsley's NEVER AGAIN
Congratulations to all the nominees, both Leaguers and non-Leaguers alike. For the complete list of nominations, check out the Romantic Times site.
Also, as some of you know, the Goodreads Choice awards is also going on. Kevin Hearne's HOUNDED made it to the semi-final round. Richelle Mead's SUCCUBUS REVEALED made made it to the final round of the Best Paranormal Fantasy novels of 2011.
But this is only a hint of things to come. I predict that 2012 will be the yea…

Snow White and the Competition

It seems like when Hollywood comes up with a big idea, more than one studio wants in on the action. The latest "competing" movies seem to be the Snow White movies. Two of 'em. One dark and gritty (Snow White and the Huntsman), the other more of a parody (Mirror, Mirror).

Competing evil queens: Charlize Theron vs. Julia Roberts. (Frankly, I think Ms. Theron easily edges Ms. Roberts out in the "fairest" category).

Competing Snow Whites: Twilight's Kristen Stewart vs. Some Actress I Don't Know.

Between the two of these, and based on the trailers, I'm more interested in Snow White and the Huntsman. However, the director of Mirror, Mirror is responsible for one of my favorite, visually stunning movies of all time, The Cell. So we'll see.

Based on these trailers, which do you think will be the winningest version of Snow White in 2012?



What Next?

Soooo... NaNoWriMo is now halfway through. This is my first time. Yes really. I was a NaNoWriMo virgin until this year.

Why?

Because I didn't even know there was such a thing until after my first novel was published. And then I found that I was usually in the revision process when everyone else was diving into their NoWri and heading for the 50,000 word finish line, recorded in diligent little blog posts and complaining. This was before Twitter and G+ of course. And maybe even before FaceBook. Yes, it's been such a short time and so much has happened....

What hasn't changed is this: it's still a process which results in (we hope) 50,000 words of story recorded for whatever posterity you choose to reference. Well, it might be more if you've been extra busy and very very clever, not to mention a fast typist with a lot of time on your hands. (And if you are any of these, I hate you.) In A Month! (Yeah, That's a lot in not a lot of time and don't believe anyone w…

Dr. Peeler's Five Laws of Nanowrimo!

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Howdy folks! I'm doing Nanowrimo this year, and I thought I'd share my thoughts on how to engage with National Novel Writing Month successfully.

"But you haven't even finished successfully, Dr Peeler," readers may be thinking. "You are only halfway done!"

This is true. But what I've noticed these first two weeks is that Nanowrimo is mostly what writers do, when they're on deadline. A few thousand words a day is not much for us, especially if we write genre fiction. On Twitter, writers with contracts for 3-4 books a year (a pretty standard number for those who actually make a living writing) often talk about writing five thousand or more words per day.

And that's partly why I like Nanowrimo as a learning experience for aspiring writers. It's nice to think of writing as this wonderful enterprise where one sits in a puddle of sun, scribbling and laughing and eating bonbons. The truth is much uglier, oftentimes a bit smellier, and definitely in…

Writing for Myself

One of the interesting things about being published is that your words aren't always your own. Or your time, really. Before I had a contract I could write whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. Silly stories, or smutty bits of fanfic, huge posts in online role-playing games - the writing was "just for fun." Except when I got serious and started pushing toward what I needed to do for publication.

And the thing is, I got my contract very quickly. A Brush of Darkness was my first real attempt at getting published (though I hadn't really meant it to be - it was supposed to be my "learner" book. Fate is odd that way, I suppose.)

But one of the trade-offs to that is that I don't have a trunk full of additional manuscripts I can pull from. I'm writing as I go - which means contracted work comes first, even if I get struck with inspiration for something else. And clearly, every author is different. I'm a slow writer and I've got all that "Real J…

To err is who man

We all make typos. There's no getting around it. If you're human and type a lot, you will make typos. That's what beta readers and editors are for. Plus, in this day and age, you've always got a spellchecker handy to flag your mistakes for you. It's kind of hard to let a typo slide if Microsoft Word tells you in red that you spelled something wrong.

Unless, of course, your typo isn't misspelled. This is a problem I have all the time. When I'm typing quickly, I substitute words that sound like the word I intended to type. It's like my brain is hooked on phonics. And I don't mean I have a homonym problem. I know when to use they're and their, cast and caste, etc. No, I substitute words that sound *like* the word I intended--but not exactly like it. Like so:

I arrived at seven on the doubt.

Yeah. I probably don't need to tell you that I intended to use "dot" there. This one's obvious too:

Our leaves depended on it.

That doesn't mak…

Best Names Ever

So I'm watching American Horror Story, and I have to say, the show has become addictive. It's unflinchingly dark, and extremely violent. I absolutely love what the writers are doing with the characters of Violet and Tate. And here's something that I thought was tres cool indeed:

Tate + Violet

Taint + Violent

See that? Isn't that AWESOME???

What other couple names from books, television shows, plays or movies can you think of are either intentionally or accidentally awesome plays on words?

The Story Muse

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In one of the more haunting issues of The Sandman by Neil Gaiman—#17 to be exact—there is a character named Richard Madoc who becomes cursed with more stories than he can possibly write down. Instead of facing writer’s block, he’s dealing with writer’s diarrhea, and he goes quite batshit as a result. It’s a fabulous issue, and completely terrifying in many respects to any author. I recommend it—as I recommend that whole series.

I have not yet achieved Richard Madoc’s level of batshit. But it does seem that I’m getting more ideas for stories than should be allowed. I’ve started several different ones in the past couple of weeks, all of them shiny and new, when I should be working on the book that’s under contract. I’ve been working on it too, of course—but the ideas keep coming. Since I’m kind of a slow writer, I get excited by 2-3,000 words per day when that’s pretty meh for most writers. (I tried writing with Nicole Peeler once. That was an exercise in humility. She wrote like 1,500…

Three things I never in my wildest dreams thought I'd need as a novelist

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Up until recently, the profession of novelist really hadn’t changed, well, for eons. In fact, until the past decade, it was a pretty backward-looking profession, which was something that made me eager to join it. 
Budding scientists and engineers aspire to do new things, but for most of my youth, I aspired to be like writers who lived decades before me. My picture of success was pretty old fashioned: a stack of books, and I would build that stack by working hard. And my computer was just a souped-up typewriter.

The last thing I thought I would want or need as a writer was a crystal ball! Who cares about the future? Que sera sera, biotches!   
Hah. That has totally changed. I've never been more obsessed with predicting the future as I am today as a writer of novels. I change my mind every other day about what my priorities should be in this crazy new climate. New and different things are important. Nobody agrees on anything except that things are changing. Will I make a decision today…

Write naked if you have to!

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We've made it to November. Whew! That means it's time for... NaNoWriMo! National Novel Writing Month. If you've got the novel-writing itch, then scratch it with NaNoWriMo.

This year I’m an official participant because I need to finish a work-in-progress. Right now, I’m what is charitably called “in-between-contracts,” which in industry parlance means I got bupkis in terms of book contracts.




This year my publishing credits were limited to a short story in the mystery anthology, You Don’t Have A Clue, and an essay in the collection, An Elevated View--Colorado Writers on Writing.







Since my last contract I’ve been fielding proposals--the first three chapters, an outline, and a synopsis--in hopes of scoring an advance before I have to write the whole manuscript. I got nibbles on three proposals with this caveat: the editors want to see the completed manuscripts. Ugh. So enough pounding my pud, time to finish one story and send it off. That’s where NaNoWriMo comes in. Do or die, bro…

A Guide to Surviving Whatever Halloween Throws at You

So, as usual, I've been watching way too many horror movies in the lead-up to Halloween. And because I tend to over-think these things, I've started composing lists of things I need to watch for just in case I'm destined for some sort of SyFy Channel Halloween death match. And because you're my blog peeps, and I love you, and I want you to survive if such a situation comes up, I thought I'd share them with you.

Five signs you are about to be bitch-slapped by the zombie apocalypse.

1) You have drunkenly stumbled into a mausoleum, hunting cabin, abandoned hospital/mental ward, derelict amusement park or closed shopping mall to do something juvenile and asinine.

2) You recently achieved a life milestone- marriage, a promotion, pregnancy, or retiring. In zombie movies, God will only let you be happy for so long.

3) You fiddle with chemicals and/or bio-hazardous materials you neither appreciate nor understand.

4) You are feisty and/or plucky. Zombies are drawn to "…

Halloween Chat at VYou

No plans on Halloween? I'll be hosting a video chat at VYou, from 9-10 p.m. (CST) Monday, Oct. 31. Stop by, leave a question, you'll get an immediate video response!

My profile is linked here.


The Once & Future Podcast Haunted Halloween Special Features Favorite Authors Reading Their Favorite Seasonal Tales

I've been a busy little bee spooking it up for the haunted holiday season, and here are all the details that will bring you almost 2 hours of awesome story goodness!
(USA, NY, NY) - Speculative fiction author Anton Strout announces a very special haunted episode of The Once & Future Podcast- a new weekly book-centric podcast focused on all things fantasy and science fiction. Episode 7, posting onMonday, October 24th, promises hours of dark and creepy tales of the season, including many of them read by the authors themselves. “I love the Fall,” says Strout, host and curator of content for the show.“I always have.The change of seasons where everything is slowly dying, a chill filling the air, and all the horrors that are associated with one of my favorite holidays, Halloween.To help celebrate, I’ve invited some of my most ghoulish and delightful author friends to join in this danse macabre and regale us with stories inspired by their darker nature.Being the twisted little creator…