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Showing posts from 2007

dither dither dither

It's been three days since I finished YELLOW ROSES, and I am truly at a loss what to do next.

• The Super Sekrit Projekt needs some attention. Low enthusiasm. Best chance of actual ca$h.
• There's a short(ish) story that might be a lot of fun. I've never really delved into sisterhood, the true biological sense as opposed to sisterhood-by-choice. I think that story would really draw it out.
• The Second Super Sekrit Projekt needs real attention. Like yesterday.

And there's a woman out there shouting, "Sanctuary! Sanctuary!" Someone drive her to the cathedral. :)

Really, I should chuck it all and work on promoting the editing business. If I'm going to make enough cash to keep my convention schedule, it's not coming from royalties. Or the Cafepress shop. Or direct sales.

Wait, why am I doing this again? Sigh.

Abaddon review!

Abaddon is a remarkable book and the Nocturnal Urges series are some of the best fiction novels I’ve read in a while. Elizabeth Donald is an author of superior caliber who crafted a multi-faceted story with socially relevant themes and characters that I will remember for a long time to come. These people were very real to me and I felt genuine emotion for them and for what they were experiencing.

One thing to note, this story is a departure from the others in the series in that it is horror fiction. There is no romance in Abaddon as the romance elements were the subject of Nocturnal Urges and A More Perfect Union.

Ms. Donald is now an auto buy author for me and I am quite looking forward to more from her Nocturnal Urges series.


http://www.fallenangelreviews.com/2007/November/Misa-Abaddon.htm

Twilight and Thorns

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It's heeeere!

This anthology is the first offering from Circle Dark Publishing, and with a cover like this, you gotta know it's good.



It's an e-anthology, and folks, it looks like my little story is the happiest, most positive story in the bunch. Given what you know about me, what does THAT say?

So go forth and buy! Now!

Last Day, and Chat Tonight!

Go to http://www.longandshortreviews.com and see my post about procrastination! It's your last chance to enter the drawing for a free copy of ABADDON! If you get the chance, too, thank the kind folks at Long and Short of It for featuring me. It really has been an honor.

Also, don't forget tonight's release party chat for TWILIGHT AND THORNS! Such a pretty cover. I can't wait to read the rest of the stories. (I already read mine.) The chat is at 7 p.m. CST. Go to http://www.circledarkpublishing.net and scan down to the chat link. It is a Java-enabled chat, so you'll need Java to participate.

See you there!

Author! Author!

Wait, that's me.

The Long And the Short of It kicks off its week of featuring MOI in the author spotlight today! I've tried to be quasi-entertaining in my little chats - a new yammering by me will be featured each day.

Best of all, enter each day for a chance to win a copy of ABADDON!

Even if you have zero interest in my ramblings, please drop by and give these folks hit counts.

ALSO: Circle Dark Publishing is holding a chat party Friday night beginning at 7 p.m. CST to celebrate the release of TWILIGHT AND THORNS. The anthology includes a short story by yours truly, so I'll be there with bells on! (Or, you know, sans bells.) Let's have a good showing!

Yellow Roses

Another day, another couple of characters killed. I apparently broke the internets, since Zokutou's word meter is missing and others suck. So you'll just have to take my word for it that YR stands at 73,924 words. My goal was 80,000, and I'll make that easily, but longer is better, I suppose. Some publishers are starting at 90K for a first novel these days, though I wouldn't want to go over 100K. Not until they knows me better. :)

Today was a day of failed research. I sought a protection spell, reading up in MONSTERS by John Michael Greer and firing off emails to people who might know, but I haven't found what I wanted and I don't know if the scene will be in the book anyway.

I also took a stab (pardon the expression) at courthouse security research, but that scene is already written. Still, I hope the attempt gains some fruit, since I'd like to catch any egregious errors at this phase.

I've been ultra-paranoid about language lately. A bit of constructive …

progress report

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69,416 / 80,000
(86.8%)

Holy crap, I did a lot today. And I freaked myself out rewriting the library scene. I don't know if it'll make the readers crap their pants, but I feel like sleeping with the light on.

Today's Research:

• Ten-codes vary widely from department to department. However, a Ten-Double-Zero is nearly universal for "officer down, all units respond." This is a better choice than "Ten-Thirty-Five," which is just "major incident." Duh.

I have been listening to my Yellow Roses mix while I write the rest of this book, but for the library scene I switched. First Solus ad victimam by Kenneth Leighton, then Berlioz's Symphonie Fantastique. The march to the scaffold is truly freaky.

Often while writing, I have felt that the stories I want to tell are ill-served by my talent. I knew the ending of THE COLD ONES long before I began to write the book, and yet when I finally wrote the ending (and rewrote it, as is my wont) it was not nearly as…

Featured Author!

That would be moi.

The Long and the Short of It, a fiction review site, will be featuring me as their guest author all next week! Drop by all week to hear me blather on insanely, or at least to support people kind enough to consider my work worthy of their time.

Links will be forthcoming each day next week! Now to come up with something quasi-coherent to say....

Yellow Roses

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I wonder what it says that I keep cackling to myself and muttering, "Ain't I a stinker?"

That said, one of today's scenes rawtha smells. I've tossed it to the First Readers, and I guess I'll see if it stinks as badly as I think. I need to slow down, I know, but it's been so long since it was this much fun...

56,868 / 80,000
(71.1%)

The Latest Research:

• A hook is a type of punch in boxing. You turn the core muscles, swinging the arm at a 90-degreee angle into the opponent. Usually aimed at the side of the head, but can also be used for body blows. A cross is a more powerful hook, thrown by the rear hand horizontally.

• Ghost hunters would use a digital thermometer probe for the most accurate testing of cold spots.

Yellow Roses

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We're zooming now, folks. Of course, we're in the fun part. All that grief, agony and pain. Yum.

47,951 / 80,000
(59.9%)

Research has included:

• The background and history of the Wildey Theater, as well as a personal visit to the interior of the Miner's Theater. Both are wonderful old turn-of-the-century stage-movie houses, and both are allegedly haunted.

• Everything Nick spouts in all his scenes is from my research into ghosthunting and paranormal investigation as it currently stands. I am not soaking St. John's Wort in olive oil for two months just to see what it looks like, though.

• Dillinger was allegedly shot and killed outside a Chicago theater by the FBI, led by Melvin Purvis. There is an ongoing theory that the Feebs accidentally killed the wrong man, but the official version is that Dillinger got plastic surgery right before his death and that's why his own father didn't recognize him. The "oops" theory doesn't account for why Dillinger woul…

I am spam!

I rather thought Shelfari was cool when I signed up for it. Any online community built entirely on books must be great, yes?

Until I had a friend request on it, and I clicked the wrong button. Instead of just accepting invitations, it sent an email inviting my entire address book.

That address book had my editors and reporters at the newspaper. My colleagues at Cerridwen Press, Ellora's Cave, New Babel Books, Circle Dark Publishing... It had editors at publishing houses and magazines to which I've submitted, added to my address book automatically so their responses wouldn't go into the spam filter.

Clients from my editing service. Fellow writers. Friends from college. Long-lost relatives. 394 NAMES.

I hereby declare that those "invite your entire address book" programs are evil, and they must be destroyed.

My apologies to any and all I accidentally invited. I tried to send an apology to my address book, but Yahoo wouldn't let me.

Ironically, it seems they don'…

Apex!

Apex Magazine is having a subscription drive for the best of all possible reasons: to increase its pay rate for authors. The more subscriptions it gets in the course of the drive (through Nov. 30), the more it can raise its rates to writers.

Apex is one of the best horror/sf markets out there, and it is absolutely worth your time. They publish good stuff, by established and new writers alike. A one-year subscription is a very reasonable $20.

Go forth and subscribe! Help keep a good market in business and support markets that are dedicated to paying a quasi-living wage to hardworking writers. If nothing else, you should subscribe to support that goal.

Author!

Tonight is celebrating her three (!!) October releases in a chat. Drop by! I will unfortunately be working, but I'm in awe of her productivity.

When: Monday, October 29, 8 PM, Central
Where: Angel's Chat Room. and click the "Enter my Chat room" link
Why: to promote "Raising the Dead," "Shifting Back" and "Ain't No Easy Run"
Why should you come: fun! Frolic! free e-books!

Also, M.R. Sellars is getting serious ink today. Actually yesterday, but I had no time to read the Sunday Post. Murv is a helluva guy, and he makes good book. Seriously, when I was a barely-published hack with two e-zines to my name, he sat down with me and gave me some of the best career advice ever, and made me a fan. He also writes the terrific Rowan Gant mystery series, in which his detective is a witch of the real-life Wiccan variety. He also is a witch, and he began writing the series in part because he wanted to see a realistic portrayal of Wicca in genre fictio…

Another review for ABADDON!

"This story is gripping and raw with intense emotion and great characters... This vampire world and its characters are created so realistically you almost expect to hear about them on the evening news, and not be able to sleep afterwards." -- Coffee Time Romance*

http://www.coffeetimeromance.com/BookReviews/Abaddon.html

* Warning: Mild spoilers in the full review.

Now don't you want to buy it? Sure you do!

http://www.cerridwenpress.com/productpage.asp?ISBN=9781419911224

Review!

Enchanting Reviews has this to say about ABADDON:

"This story is not a romance by any means. But it is a story of loss and revenge. A story of love and a hate that has lasted for a hundred years and that will not be denied. It is a story of fire. The fire of the human and the vampire hearts. A story of a hate that must be stopped or the vampire and human friendships that are barely holding on will be shattered because vampire consorts are being killed and someone wants the vampires to take the blame....

...a storytelling ability to rival that of Stephen King."

Wow. Thank you!

FAQ: Whither Sanctuary?

Because it came up about 3846921 times in last night's chat, here's the official status of the Sanctuary universe.

As most readers know, there are three published Sanctuary stories, all in the SETTING SUNS collection (available now from New Babel Books!). From what I've heard from readers, they were among the most popular stories in the book. I enjoyed writing them, and was pleased that so many people seemed to enjoy them enough to ask me (constantly) when they can get more Sanctuary.

The first book is written. And rewritten. But the current version was written before NOCTURNAL URGES or my subsequent three books. I look at it now and cringe. I am actually glad the one agent to whom I submitted it turned it down - it would have tanked (and been blasted by reviewers) in its current incarnation. It needs work. Enough work that I simply don't have time to do it right now.

See, it's all about cash flow, folks. The 2007 convention season is over, but 2008 is looming and I n…

Thanks!

Thanks to everyone who came to the Therapy Chat! My computer unfortunately barfed the trivia contest, so that part ended fast.

But it was great to hear everyone's thoughts and predictions, and even better to hear that people are enjoying ABADDON. Seriously, the best part of all of it is to hear from someone, "I really enjoyed your book." Even better is "Damn you, woman, you made me cry!"

It seems the parts that needed to work did, and the parts people were supposed to notice they did. Creatively, I'm happier with ABADDON than anything I've published to date. It's almost enough to believe in. Heh.

Now back to work... And remember, if you liked the book, TELL SOMEONE!

Therapy Chat/Halloween Party!

You asked for it, you're gonna get it. Since so many readers have told me they need therapy after finishing ABADDON, we're gonna give you another chat to let out your feelings. Oh, and celebrate Halloween with your fellow lunatics.

WHO: All you characters, god help me
WHAT: Therapy/Halloween Chat!
WHEN: 7-9 p.m. CST Tuesday, Oct. 23
WHERE: The Wilderness Chat Room (directions below)
WHY: To discuss ABADDON and/or throw things at the author, plus celebrate a horrorific Halloween! The usual prizes and silliness, only the trivia questions will be about horror movies and novels, not just my stuff.

You know you wanna.

Wilderness Chat Room

a) Go to http://wilderness.homeip.net/wilderness/connect/bean/index.html.
b) Wait while it loads. This can take a minute. You may see a little coffee cup thinking.
c) If it asks you if you trust the applet, you say YES.
d) You'll see a little black screen. Click File and go down to Connect.
e) It will ask you for a login name and password. You only have t…

Walking in Memphis

I spent the weekend in my old town, tooling around with my friends from college. It's always a blast to see them, even if they do remember way too much of my youthful shenanigans. Ho-hum, look at ceiling, nice day for a morning, eh?

But while I was in town, I thought I'd get a little work done. When I was last in Memphis in March, I hit all the independent bookstores I could find, but Burke's Books (famous indie new-used store) was in the process of moving from its fabled location on Poplar next to Circuit Playhouse to a new location in the Cooper-Young district. So this trip, I hit Burke's. Missed the owners, but the kind young man behind the counter took my pitch kit.

I also dropped by the main branch of the Memphis library and the University of Memphis library to donate copies of Setting Suns, along with contact info in case they have any questions or concerns. The Memphis library didn't exist when I was in college, and if it had, I would have LIVED there. It'…

Argh!

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Signs you're done for the day: “So the full-immersion course isn’t standard?” Cat said, trying to crack jokes. No one was laughing. Including the author. Fuck!

31,461 / 90,000
(35.0%)

It's like when I get in the room with JASPR, the fun dies. I intended for them to lighten up the book, expand a bit in the world of ghostliness and most of all, expand the word count. It ain't working. It's not the characters' fault - okay, maybe it is, they're all a little too sour. Either Shane or Justin needs to be the serious one, and the other one needs to be a smartass. I think it needs to be Justin - Shane's all law-and-order.

I don't know. I'm into a new sequence now, the break in the parade o' flashbacks. Chapter Five is one giant flashback, from the boys as kids up to the promise at the river. Then we break, and Cat spends a little time with JASPR trying to figure out what the hell is going on (and going on an investigation) before she goes running back to …

Too many Parkers

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29,459 / 90,000
(32.7%)

I'm amazed I could get any words at all tonight, the weekend I've had. The Pirate Festival yesterday, church this morning and Six Flags this afternoon. My aches have aches, and the rum is gone. (Make your own jokes, I'm tired.)

But I picked up the new CD from Three Pints Gone, which seems to be a group that conspires to inspire me. Last year's sea chanties inspired the final sequence of THE COLD ONES, believe it or not, and this year's collection includes several songs that seem designed for YELLOW ROSES. Playing them helped me get through the first of the flashback sequences.

Not much to be changed here, just language and cleaning it up. I did note that I named Colin's adoptive parents Parker, which is a bad move since Det. Parker is such a major character in the NU series. So I switched it to Massey. I knew a Massey once.

Other research:

• Diptheria was quite common at the turn of the last century. In the 1700s it was rumored to have killed…

64,000 miles to Rivendell

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26,644 / 90,000
(29.6%)

In the end, I solved my JASPR problem by ignoring it. I fixed it up a bit, but nothing was making me like it. So I went on to the next scene. What do I tell aspiring writers all the time? If you get stuck, bust through it. If you can't bust through it, step around it and keep going.

If other JASPR scenes also suck, I may rethink their position in this book. But for now, we're on to the flashbacks. Get ready to cry.

13 Stories

One of the prizes I gave away last night needs some explanation.

There is a true Elizabeth Donald collectible, believe it or not. My first print publication was in a small Canadian horror magazine called 13 STORIES. It was adorably pocket-sized and had really good stuff. They bought my short story "Silent," and it appeared in 2003. I celebrated like mad - there was little to no money involved, but up until then I had only been published in small online magazines.

Unfortunately, that was the last issue for 13 STORIES. They went bust.

I still have a handful of my contributor's copies. And Mr. Drew Sanford won one in the contest. It's rather appropriate, since I named a major character in ABADDON after him.

If I ever make the big time, the final issue of 13 STORIES will be worth something, I expect. If not, well, it's cute.

The best part

It's odd how one gets reinvested.

I haven't written anything on YELLOW ROSES in at least a week. Of course, the whole "flying to Phoenix" thing didn't help, but the real reason was that I felt blocked. The JASPR scene was not to my liking. I still want JASPR in the story - I think it will help a lot with tone, pace flow and so on - but it wasn't funny. Or interesting. And I didn't know how to fix it. The scene needs to be there, it's important both for the storyline and for the pacing, but... meh.

It really kind of derailed me. And right after this is the flashback sequence that, to me, is the best part of the book. So I need to slam-dunk this scene.

The boy gets the benefit, I guess. I need several hours uninterrupted screen time. So unless he gets his little self in trouble today, he'll go to skate night and I'll hole up with the laptop at St. Louis Bread Company or Sacred Grounds. Maybe Sacred Grounds would be better. Nothing breaks up a bloc…

ABADDON is out!

I am happy to report my new horror-mystery novel, ABADDON, is now available for purchase on Cerridwen Press's web site.

http://www.cerridwenpress.com/productpage.asp?ISBN=9781419911224

ABADDON

Beneath the dark Memphis streets, something is stirring. Filled with ancient fury. Seeking revenge on the ones who live above. A revenge born in fire.

The fires are raging in Memphis and no one is safe. Ryan and Samantha must descend into darkness beyond their imagining to find answers to mysteries of the past as Detectives Freitas and Parker seek the truth about the present.

And the return of an old foe could make the future a dark place indeed…save for the flames of Abaddon.

Go forth and buy! And don't forget, if you don't like the ebook style, email me at elizabethdonald at yahoo dot com after you've bought the ebook. I can arrange for it to be printed at cost for $8 and shipped to you.

Hope you like it!

Chat tomorrow!

In case you missed it, my vampire novel ABADDON comes out tomorrow from Cerridwen Press. FINALLY! My first horror novel to begin as an ebook, so I'll be interested to see how that goes. (Link will be added as soon as it's up.)

WHAT: Online chat party to celebrate the release of ABADDON
WHEN: 7-9 p.m. CST Thursday, Sept. 27
WHERE: The Wilderness Chat Room (directions below)
WHO: Everybody! Including me, probably with a rum and coke in hand.
WHY: Fun! Prizes! Free!

Wilderness Chat Room Directions:
a) Go to wilderness.homeip.net/wil...ndex.html.
b) Wait while it loads. This can take a minute. You may see a little coffee cup thinking.
c) If it asks you if you trust the applet, you say YES.
d) You'll see a little black screen. Click File and go down to Connect.
e) It will ask you for a login name and password. You only have to do this step once. Don't worry, no one's logging so much as an IP address.

We got goooood prizes this time, folks. Be there! And oh yeah, buy the book. :)

Welcome to JASPR

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24,835 / 90,000
(27.6%)


Finally got the first JASPR scene written. I don't like it. It's not funny. I mean, they bitch at each other, but I don't know if that qualifies as funny.

My ghosthunters are:

• Rivka Zoole, de factor leader. She's about Cat's age, with short-cropped black hair and a two-pack-a-day habit. She's tough, and used to being mocked because of her belief in ghosts. Her grandmother appeared in her dorm room three days after the funeral, and she's been fascinated by ghosts ever since.

• Shane Moore, a cop who works with JASPR in secret so it doesn't impact his career. He saw a ghost during a foot patrol, where he ended up chasing a man through the woods who had died in the road several minutes before.

• Sora Newton, a sensitive who has believed in her psychic ability all her life. I'm not sure if she really is psychic or is simply sensitive enough to people's emotions to feel a presence in the room. She doesn't talk much.

• Justin A…

Abaddon ahoy!

Beginning today, there will be a trivia contest running on my YahooGroup! Each day, I'll toss out a question and the first one to answer it wins a prize!

We'll do this each day until ABADDON is released on Sept. 27. It's coming out as an ebook from Cerridwen Press, and I know you'll ALL want to pick it up! Sure you will!

Join the Yahoogroup at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/elizabethdonald/join, you know you wanna.

Confessional

It's no secret that my favorite author is Stephen King.

King was my entry drug, my segue from the world of Nancy Drew to grown-up novels. My mother deemed his books usually too adult for me, so I swiped them out of her bookshelf and left the dustjackets in their place so she wouldn't notice they were missing. I read everything he wrote, except the Dark Tower books because they were hard to understand.

As I grew older and began to appreciate the value of books as collectible items as well as purveyors of story, I began to collect first-edition hardbacks of King's work. I have never had the opportunity to meet the man and have him sign any of them, but I live in hope.

The problem is, I have a dreadful memory. Although I have read everything he has written outside the Dark Tower, many of those books were my mother's, not mine. I have often found myself in a used bookstore somewhere, staring at a hardback King and wondering, "Is this one I already have?"

I have an aw…

JASPR rises...

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22,214 / 90,000
(24.7%)

And falls flat.

Okay, not yet. But I got to the first new scene, where I introduce JASPR... and I got nothin'.

I guess I'm just not feeling the funny today. Not that JASPR is supposed to be all yucks, they're going to be serious about this deal, but... it's just not in me tonight. And as my dear friend Frank Fradella says, you can't MAKE yourself write. It's there or it's not, and tonight it's not.

Tomorrow is a no-writing day, thanks to an insanely early AND late day. We'll attack JASPR on Friday night's writeapalooza.

The happy parts

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Cat knelt beside the gravestone, her gut still twisting, her heart pounding. She didn’t look over her shoulder, trying not to think who would be there. And when her mind turned from the cemetery’s darkness, she felt physically ill, as though Mark had punched her in the stomach instead of gazed on her with anger and hurt. She wanted to turn back time, make things right, fix whatever had gone wrong that began somewhere within herself. Something in her chest felt broken, and for the first time she could recall, the broken edges rubbed against each other, stabbing her from the inside out.

I'm writing the cheerful stuff!

20,973 / 90,000
(23.3%)

Cat is quite possibly the most fucked-up heroine I've ever written. Have I said that before? Well, it bears repeating. I love Cat so much.

Tomorrow things get interesting. New scenes. New characters. Did I say tomorrow? I meant Tuesday. Alas, tomorrow is a night shift at the paper. Silly day job, making me work and stuff.

Today's research:

• M…

Two Sales and a Chat

News is just bustin' out all over. Can you tell a new book's almost out?

• The "I Hate AirTran" Scratch-and-Dent Sale! Yes, thanks to the charmers at AirTran that managed to destroy my lovely leather duffel bag, the books inside it had some damages. Mostly crinkled covers or scuffing along the spine. My misfortune is your gain!

Starting today through ABADDON's release on Sept. 27, I'm offering damaged copies of SETTING SUNS for $10 and NOCTURNE for $12. Only while the damaged copies last! Once they're gone, it goes back up to the regular price, folks. Order by emailing me at elizabethdonald at yahoo dot com - the web site(s) are still selling undamaged copies at full price.

• The "Make Way For New Shirts" Sale! The CafePress shop will get a complete makeover soon, with a new look, new stuff, new designs and all-new merchandise.

So now's your last chance to get most of the products currently available on the site! Drop over and pick something ou…

RV Roses

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16,772 / 90,000
(18.6%)

I think I shall set a goal of a minimum of 1,000 words a day. At that rate, I'll be done in less than three months. She said laughing.

Today's research was the St. Louis RV Show. Cat Suarez lives in an RV full-time, and it's a major part of her character. But I'd never been in one. So the boy and I trucked out to the RV show and poked around inside RVs larger than my first apartment and RVs small enough that the eight-year-old and I could barely turn around in them. Took a mountain of pictures.

Most of my questions were answered. Yes, Cat could live quite comfortably full-time in an RV, using the life insurance money from her mother's death (don't know if that little detail will actually be in the book or in my head.) Yes, she can have a landline phone, if she's using an RV park that provides such services. That solves a major problem for me, not so much for the reader.* She can hitch her Jeep behind it easily, and pretty much everything…