Showing posts from June, 2011

Xe Sands Interview/Giveaway Winners

I know I'm a day late posting the winners of the THREE DAYS TO DEAD audiobook giveaway. My apologies (if it helps any, my copies still aren't here, so I can't mail them yet anyway). So, I've added together the commenters from both Organized Chaos and The League of Reluctant Adults , and Random Number Generator has declared the winners are: Erik and Moishe Moose! Congrats! Please send your mailing info to mail(at) and I'll get you set up! Thanks to everyone who commented! Xe has been amazing about the entire audio process, and I can't wait to settle in and listen to her narrate some of my favorite scenes.

Special Event: Dueling Harpers at Bitten by Books!

It turns out I have a Canadian Doppleganger. Dani Harper is a former newspaper reporter turned romance author, who writes about shapeshifters and weres. I say she's the Canadian Molly Harper. She says I'm the American Dani Harper. We engage in this debate June 23 at Bitten By Books, where the werewolves of Grundy, Alaska will meet Dani's shapeshifters from her Changeling series at the Blue Glacier Saloon to compare notes about their lore, their backgrounds and their authors. If you participate in this unprecedented meeting of Harpers, you will be eligible for FABULOUS prizes, including signed copies of our werewolf/shifter titles, a goodie bag from Dani, and a five-title paranormal prize pack from Pocket Books! To RSVP for this event, (which earns you extra entry points for the contest) click here .

True Blood Anticipation

TRUE BLOOD IS COMING! Who's ready for Season Four? If you're the type who can't wait until Sunday, HBO has an eight-minute sneak peak up of the first episode . And if you've forgotten the events of the last three seasons, there's also review of the last three seasons in under five minutes . Any predictions for this season? I don't know about you guys, but I'm really hoping for an Erik versus Alcide shirtless dance fight. How many males will get seriously injured after Sookie mouths off to the wrong super powerful being? Can Sam finally find true love with a pomeranian? To help prepare you for this exciting premier, I thought we should revisit what was perhaps the most awesome and most puzzling True Blood promo ever. Ooooh, Sookie, indeed.

What is a Beta?

((Cross-posted at On Literary Intent )) Since I announced that I’d finished Book 3 a few weeks ago and turned it over to my betas, I’ve had several questions that I thought deserved bigger answers than Twitter or Facebook would allow. So here we go. No, a beta reader is not an overly aggressive fish with a love of literature. Nor is it a person who divines the future by reading the entrails of said overly aggressive fish. (though a part of me now wants to put such a person in a book of some kind) And please realize that if you ask a dozen different writers what a beta reader is, you’re likely to get a dozen different answers. (And if you ask the Leaguers, not all of those answers will be safe for work.) So what follows is really just a small example of what my betas do for me. First, I have what I call my Alpha-Betas. This is a grand total of two people who read every word almost as soon as I set it on the paper (computer). Their purpose is to help me during the writing process. T

More Potter?

A mysterious teaser website went up the other day at and it's clear that it is JK Rowling who's behind it all. From what I've found (not much) this could be anything from an expansive website about the books, the announcement of an encyclopedia about the world, or something else. I'm hoping for something else. I adore the Harry Potter books and movies. From a purely strategic promotion angle, this is the absolute best time for Rowling to do something new -- which is hopefully a new series of books in the same world. After all, even though the last Potter book came out years ago, we've had the movies to look forward to. Now that the last is almost in theaters, we're going to be Potter-less. When better for Pottermore? My hope is that she's decided to do a prequel series about James and Lily and the Marauders. Not to mention more Snape, more Dumbledore, more everything. That would be my wish. What's really going to happen? I guess we

Independent Rear Suspension

Yes, this is cheating, because I originally wrote this in November 2000 I used to have ferrets. I should perhaps say that my life was lorded over by two ferrets. In the years I've had ferrets I have observed something about them that most people seem to have missed: they are constructed in three parts and the pointy part in the front is not in charge. If you are not familiar with them, think of a ferret as a sort of fur-covered slinky with legs, a stretch kitten, a miniature dual-tractor-trailer with teeth. They have a head-part (which is somewhat pointy and has the teeth in it), a middle bit with two legs attached, and a rear bit with two more legs and a tail. Although the head-part may seem to be in charge it is, in fact, mostly oblivious to things other than food and toys. The middle part seems to be the engine, since it is the most stable and predictable part. But it's the butt that seems to be in charge, in a sort of sit-down-revolt kind of way. How do I know this? Observa

A Cover for Eye of the Tempest!

Oh, my friends, how I have waited for this day. A number of you have emailed me over the months as various versions of the cover for my fourth book, Eye of the Tempest , have found there way to the surface of the internet. I met most of these emails with silence, 'm afraid, as I'm a terrible, terrible liar and I'm not supposed to reveal anything about covers until they've been officially released by my publishing company. So I ignored these emails not because I didn't appreciate people's enthusiasm about the book, or excitement about seeing what they thought was a new cover, but because I can't talk about this stuff until it's official. But now it's official ! Here's the final version of my beautiful new cover for Eye of the Tempest : As you can see, Orbit's made some changes to the general layout, but the artist, Sharon Tancredi, is still rocking out, doing her thang! Wait till you see the back! What do you think? I hope y'all like it a

A Word in Time

Earlier this week I ranted a bit on my personal blog about being trolled in a livestream chat room. (And before the innuendo starts flying, it was a perfectly harmless chat/livestream belonging to an artist that I like. (Livestreams are great to get a bird's eye view into a talent that I'll never have, anyway.) The chatting portion became a little strange at one point when one of the other chatters essentially accused me of being a liar. That I couldn't possibly have written a book. (Part of the discussion was about what we were working on at the moment  - pretty harmless stuff.) I have no idea why. No idea who this person is or why they decided I couldn't be trusted. In the end I suppose it doesn't really matter. I know what I've done and that's what counts. However, the whole thing did get me to thinking  more about voice and style overall. Plagiarism happens all the time - of writing, of art, of any number of things. There's a fine line between

Interview: Xe Sands, Audio Narrator

Cross-posting with my blog, Organized Chaos . So before reading this post, who knew June is Audiobook Month? Anyone? I probably wouldn't have if I hadn't been recently been involved in the creation of audiobooks for the first three Dreg City books (although when I say involved, that mostly means signing the contract, helping my amazing narrator with pronunciation questions, and then pimping the project here and there). The books are with Tantor Audio, and THREE DAYS TO DEAD is currently available for purchase. AS LIE THE DEAD will be available June 20, with ANOTHER KIND OF DEAD releasing August 2 (same day as the print version). My absolute favorite part of this whole process was "meeting" Xe Sands, who is the voice behind these audiobooks. She's a fabulous lady and her enjoyment of my books has meant the world to me. And since the process of audio narration is brand new to me, I decided to pick Xe's brain and share the results (kind of sounds like I'

So what DO you do with your time?

I never want to discourage anyone from pursuing a career in writing. I'm a big fan of "following the impossible dream," particularly after a few well-intentioned friends told me--in absolute seriousness and sincerity--that I needed to give up on "this publishing thing" back in the day. That being said, I'm also a big advocate of people understanding what a writing career entails. One thing I'm constantly explaining is that once you've signed a contract with a publisher, you have the same responsibilities as any job. You can't just write when you feel like it, anymore than you can show up for an 8-5 job when you feel like it. Sad, but true. Another thing I've recently been talking about is how a huge part of an author's job isn't actually writing a book. Days when I have nothing to do but write a fresh manuscript are few and far between--and wonderful when they happen. When I made this comment, it triggered questions from some: what ex

The disillusionists might become a TV show!

Like many Americans, I am a great fan of TV, and have many opinions and fierce attachments to various shows. So as you can imagine, I’m beyond thrilled that the Disillusionists has been optioned by the production company Fishbowl Media for possible development for TV!! The announcement from Publisher’s Marketplace: Carolyn Crane's The Disillusionist Trilogy, about a psychological hit squad of misfits and neurotics who reform criminals by pumping them full of their negative energy, pitched as Heroes meets Inception, optioned to FishBowl Media, by Shari Smiley at CAA, on behalf of Cameron McClure at Donald Maass. Yippee! When something gets optioned, it’s not actually sold. It’s more like the rights are rented for a year or some other specified time period. Fishbowl Media would use this time to work out and pitch the show to…um, I think networks. Then, if somebody picks it up, they would buy the rights. What what what will it be like? I’m so excited to learn more about wh

Interrupting our regularly scheduled program

for pictures from Kevin Hearne's signing at WhoElse Books in Denver last night. Enjoy...and to see Mario acting up, check out today's Biting Edge . Kevin and his daughter before the signing (when she was still acknowledging that she knew him) Being introduced by the lovely Nina Else. Nice crowd. Kevin reading...who knew he could do voices? We always suspected he heard them but this was a surprise! The signing line. Three Leaguers...behaving. For what happened after, you have to go The Biting Edge...I know, I know, what a tease. Now back to our program now in progress....

Two Diff'rent Books with the Same Name on the Same Day!

My fellow fans of debauchery, I am currently traveling in Colorado in support of my writing habit and in support of Rocky Mountain brewers. I started on Saturday and have been blogging about each day's adventures . Some of my adventures look like this: Today is a SPECIAL day, however, because today happens to be the day that TWO books titled HEXED are released into the wild, and both books feature spiffy adventures by League authors! No, we did not plan this amazing coincidence. At all. But we will pretend we did if you think it's cool! The first book titled HEXED is an anthology featuring our very own Jeanne Stein! Oh, and some other authors you may have heard of too, like Ilona Andrews, Yasmine Galenorn, Allyson know. Awesome writers. The cover for that book looks like this: I think that magical circle thingie on the cover might have been a necessary ritualistic aid to get the cover model into her pants. The second book titled HEXED being released today is a

Making the Darkness Visible

[Cross-posted from my blog -- and a day late. Sorry about that!] I was at a friend’s surprise party last night when I myself received a huge surprise: a friend emailed me with the news that my book Rage was mentioned in the Wall Street Journal , in an article called “ Darkness Too Visible .” At first, I was ecstatic–I mean, hello, the WSJ mentioned my book! I was giddy with validation. When I read the article, I got my second surprise: the article blasts darker-themed contemporary fiction for teens. Rage was used as an example to illustrate how “tame” issue-oriented books from the 1970s–including Go Ask Alice , Sarah T: Portrait of a Teenage Alcoholic , and I Am the Cheese . Worse, after mentioning that the protagonist in Rage struggles with self-injury and quoting two lines from the book, the article goes on to say that books like Rage are likely to help “normalize” issues such as self-injury–and “may even spread their plausibility and likelihood to young people who might ot

Inspiring Writers (Or How to Re-Use a Speech for a Blog Post)

Last month, I gave the keynote speech at the induction ceremony for Sigma Kappa Delta, the English Honors Society at Collin College. I thought, "Hey, I can share all my words of wisdom at the League." And if you think I'm just doing this because I couldn't think of an original blog post ... um, maybe you're right. But seriously. Words of wisdom. You're welcome. * * * * * Henry David Thoreau said, “Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.” And a T-shirt I saw recently said, “Follow your dreams … except the one where you’re naked at work.” Both of these quotes offer good advice. Let me tell you something, you’ll be subjected to all kinds of advice. Some of it you’ll ask for and perhaps even want, but most advice will be given to you unsolicited. You have no doubt already experienced the joy of hearing other people’s opinions about your goals … about your dreams. You are the dreamer. Be confident. Only you can d