2018 – roundup

2018 seems to have flown by. Isn’t it odd how individual days appear to last an age, but the year as a whole just zooms past?

Politics has lost what little mind it had – the US government – probably the less said about that the better as I’ll only start an argument. The UK government has been dominated by Brexit, leadership problems and everyone is thoroughly sick of it all. I will say this year there has been a revolving door both at the Whitehouse and the Houses of Parliament.  Jeez – grow a spine, some balls or get rid of the person who is the problem and do it quickly….

Reading-wise – I’ve read over 60 books from true crime to historical to mystery, fantasy, and science fiction. I am planning to read a bit more fiction next year, and pick up some new authors.

Writing-wise – not as productive as I hoped and I’m not going to bore you with excuses. Let’s focus on what I have done.

Lovers in Hell  What a fun universe to write for! Anything can happen – but it usually backfires in ironic, dastardly and hellish ways. (See interviews for Hell Week).

The Secret of Blossom Rise This was my first ghost story – written for the Here Be Ghosts bundle, and Boo V.

The Kitchen Imps won the NN Light Fantasy book of the year.

Bundles:

Here Be Dragons

Here Be Fairies

Here Be Ghosts

Here Be Monsters (no longer available)

Remembering Warriors (no longer available in 2019)

Spring Surprise (no longer available)

Summer Shimmer (no longer available)

Frisky February (no longer available)

There were also audio editions for The Watcher (a Jack the Ripper Tale)

And audio and print editions for the two current Legacy of the Mask Tales:

Tears and Crimson Velvet

Echoes of a Song

What will 2019 bring? That is a good question…

Hopefully more Kitchen Imps, working on book IV of the Light Beyond the Storm, Heroika 2, another Heroes in Hell (assuming I can get the damn story finished), and possibly the completion of at least one novella.

I’m also learning Photoshop (steep learning curve), and have completed a course on Copyright, GDPR, Ancient Egypt, and DSE.

I’ll be a better blogger too….

Book Spotlight – The Beast of Talesend – Fantasy – Bundle

Basic Book Spotlight

Title: The Beast of Talesend

Author: Kyle Robert Shultz

Genre: Fairytale fantasy

Main character description (short): Nick Beasley, a detective famous for debunking magic.

Synopsis: Private eye Nick Beasley lives in a world where fairy tales ended a long time ago – where zeppelins now soar the skies instead of dragons, and where the first automobiles have taken the place of flying carpets. He’s made a name for himself across the Afterlands by debunking fake magicians and exposing fraudulent monsters. This is the modern age, after all. Magic and monsters are long gone.

At least, that’s what Nick believes. Until he gets magically transformed into a monster, that is.

The only person who may be able to help Nick is Lady Cordelia Beaumont, one of the last enchantresses in the Afterlands. But in order for her to cure him, they’ll have to retrieve a powerful artifact from a ruthless crime lord – who is also Cordelia’s father.

The fate of the Afterlands lies in the hands of a runaway enchantress and a monstrous ex-detective. What could possibly go wrong?

Brief Excerpt 250 words:

“What do you mean?” I roared. “Don’t tell me that! You said, back in the castle, that you were going to change me just to convince me magic was real, and then change me back! So why can’t you just do that now?”
“It’s not that easy,” Cordelia insisted. “Magic has rules.”
I stared at her in disbelief. “It’s magic. By definition, how could it possibly have rules? Magic is a contradiction of every law in the universe!”
“Of course it has rules,” she shot back. “If it didn’t, then you could just do anything you wanted to with it!”
“Can’t you?”
“No! There are all sorts of things magic can never do. Raising the dead, for example.”
“I’m not asking you to raise the dead! Just break this spell!”

Why should readers buy this book (50 words max)?

Because admit it, you’ve always wanted a 1920’s noir-ish detective novel with shades of Doctor Who featuring a snarky monster protagonist; you just never knew how to put that desire into words before. You’re welcome.

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Links etc: https://bit.ly/2JNjPum

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Dirty Dozen Character Interviews – Dani Erikson – Bundle/Fantasy/Paranormal/Monsters

Welcome to DANI ERICKSON

  • Tell us a little about yourself.

I’m the seventh child of a seventh child, which makes me a hereditary demon hunter. I’m actually the answer to my grandpa’s dream, but he doesn’t know it. See, he set out to create a legendary seventh son of a seventh son – probably drove my grandmother to an early grave in the attempt. As far as he’s concerned, he failed. He got his seven sons, and six daughters as well, but his seventh son, my Uncle Gus, failed him. You see, Uncle Gus and Aunt Ellen weren’t able to have kids.

Grandpa had ignored Mom and Dad until it became clear that Aunt Ellen wasn’t going to give him any grandsons. After all, Dad was only son #5. But then Grandpa realized that Mom and Dad had six little boys, and there was another baby on the way! Mom wasn’t thrilled when Gramps turned his obsessive attention on her, but there wasn’t much she could do about it. Then the worst happened – at least from Grandpa’s point of view. I was born. A girl. Can anyone say, “Major disappointment”?

But the laugh’s on Grandpa, because gender doesn’t matter to a demon hunter. It’s all about the numbers. See, Dad was only the fifth son, but he was the seventh child. Making me the seventh child of a seventh child. I came into my powers on fourteenth birthday, but I’m not admitting any of this to my family. At least, not yet.

And Grandpa? Maybe I’ll tell him his plan succeeded … someday … if I’m feeling generous.

  • What is your world like? How does it differ to mine?

I live in Longmont, Colorado, in the here and now. My world is exactly like yours, except I can see the demons who walk right beside us, and you can’t. That’s not necessarily a good thing. Trust me. You’re lucky you can’t see them!

  • Is your world populated by different races? How do they get along?

How do demons and humans get along? Depends on who you ask. Normal people don’t believe demons exist. Demons are perfectly happy with that since they feed off of us. Since normals don’t believe in them, they’re easy prey.

Me? I don’t get along with demons at all. I hunt them, with the help of my guardian and trainer. Wick can see them too, and he can fight them, he just can’t kill them. Killing demons is reserved for the hereditary demon hunters of the world. And in this age of birth control and smaller families, there just aren’t enough of us to protect humanity.

  • Tell us about your family?

Well, I already told you about Grandpa and his obsessive desire for a seventh-seventh, so let’s concentrate on my immediate family.

I’m the youngest, and only girl, of seven kids. My brothers are Mike, Pat, Evan, Seth, Brent, and Jamie. Mike is in medical school at the Unversity of Colorado, Boulder. Pat just graduated with a degree in engineering. Evan is a senior at CU, studying urban planning, while Seth is a junior, but he hasn’t declared a major yet. Can’t make up his mind. Brent and Jamie are still in high school, a senior and a junior, while I’m just starting my freshman year.

Dad’s an architect with a firm in Boulder, and Mom is a stay-at-home mom. Trust me, with six sons and one daughter, she has a full-time job!

  • What is your greatest skill/asset

I have mad skills with knives and swords, and all forms of fighting (from street fighting to martial arts) come as naturally to me as walking. Wick has to teach me the basics, but I catch on faster than Jamie can inhale French fries!

  • What is your greatest weakness (we won’t tell).

I am a complete failure at lady-like behaviour. Seriously. Fancy dresses, make-up and batting eyelashes? Gag!

  • How would you describe yourself?

I’m okay looking, if you like athletic girls. I have long, dark blonde hair with a hint of red, and I typically wear it in a ponytail or a ponytail braid. I’m 5’10” with light brown eyes and I’m a lean, mean, fighting machine!

  • How do you think others see you?

Well, my family, especially my brothers, see a helpless little girl. They all want me to act like a girl. After all, we have enough boys in the family.

  • What is your greatest fear?

My greatest fear isn’t that a demon will kill or maim me, it’s that my family will figure out that I have more in common with an Amazon queen than with a fairy-tale princess – that I’m more of a Rottweiler than the pampered Pomeranian they like to think I am.

  • If you could have three wishes what would they be?
  • My family would recognize me and accept me for who – and what – I am!
  • To rid my high school and my town of all the demons infecting them. I’ll worry about the rest of the country when I’m older.
  • I wish I could find a couple more demon hunters to help me. Sometimes the job feels pretty overwhelming

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  • Do you believe in magic?

Well, duh! I fight demons, remember?

  • Tell us about your greatest achievement

I’m a kick-ass demon hunter, and my parents even named me appropriately. I’m Dani Heleen Erickson, which makes my initials D.H.E. – Demon Hunter Extraordinaire!

Demon Daze (Dani Erickson Book 1) by [Logan, Deb]

For the author

Books in which this character appears:

Demon Daze

School Daze 

Family Daze

Challenging Daze

Demon Daze appears in Here Be Monsters

Short author bio:

Deb Logan writes children’s, tween, and young adult fantasy. Her stories are light-hearted tales for the younger set — or ageless folk who remain young at heart. She’s published numerous titles, including short stories, collections, and novels. Her work has been published in multiple volumes of Fiction River: An Original Anthology Magazine, as well as in The Young Explorer’s Adventure Guide series. Author of the popular “Dani Erickson” series, Deb loves dragons and faeries and all things unexplained.

 

Links:

Newsletter: https://landing.mailerlite.com/webforms/landing/l9m2v4

Website: http://debloganwrites.com

Facebook: @DebLoganWrites

 

 

 

 

Book Spotlight – Tales of Erana: The Warrior’s Curse – Fantasy/Bundle

Here Be Monsters

Title: Tales of Erana: The Warrior’s Curse

Author: A. L. Butcher

Genre: Fantasy/Mythic/Dark Fantasy/Short Stories

Main character description (short).

“I am Saelth and I have come to slay your monster,” he announced. His words were bold and his demeanour bolder. Behind him rode the fiercest of his band, axemen and archers, trackers and swordsmen. A mean crew indeed and feared about the land; fur-clad and blooded, they were blades for hire.

Synopsis: He who bargains with monsters beware! A hero forges an unholy bargain with a witch and learns magic never forgets.

In a land of forbidden magic, a mysterious cave holds both riches and danger for three adventurers who discover a mighty treasure and a terrible secret.

 

Tales of Erana: The Warrior’s Curse Excerpt

© A. L. Butcher

On the nights when the moon rose to its fullest, its light a silver sheen upon the roof of the Great Hall, a terrible monster came. His voice was like the rasping of flesh on a blade, his countenance blighted and ugly, twisted like melted flesh with great weeping sores and a putrid smell. Many warriors had tried to vanquish this foul creature, and now their bones lay with the prince’s in the barrow to the east of Eadsham, the settlement that had been forged by blood and toil by the first king, Aedwin. Widows were aplenty and many children made fatherless from this awful beast. Doors were bolted and barred, and not even the lord himself dared to face it. Such was his shame.

The king grew ever older and wishing to marry a man of bravery and honour to his daughter messengers once more rode out north, south, east and west in search of a hero, one with the fortitude to face this cursed beast, as they had done so many times before. On a night when clouds covered the moon’s light and rain fell in drops the size of marbles, the sky was rent with lightning as a great human warrior rode to the gates of the village. “I am Saelth and I have come to slay your monster,” he announced. His words were bold and his demeanour bolder. Behind him rode the fiercest of his band, axemen and archers, trackers and swordsmen. A mean crew indeed and feared about the land; fur-clad and blooded, they were blades for hire.

“We have slain creatures from nightmare and beasts that made grown men piss their drawers. Your curse will be lifted if the price is right!” His band nodded, for their rates were high indeed so that only lords and kings could afford their blades.

“No weapon forged by man can vanquish it! You’ll simply earn your place in the Hall of the Dead,” someone called.

Saelth looked around for the one who had spoken. “Then I shall go to the Halls of the Dead a hero, not one who cowers behind the table, or beneath the bed. I am no coward, nor simpering woman. Nothing is all powerful, or unable to be vanquished, save the gods.”

Why should readers buy this book?

The Warrior’s Curse is a tale of greed, adventure, monsters and the price of magic, set in a dark fantasy world. But it’s also a tale of people, their weaknesses and what some will do for power. It is a story within a story, as we start with a group of adventurers plundering a cave and learn of dark deeds and unholy bargains.

If you like mythic style fantasy, fast-paced adventure with a twist then you’ll love this.

Warriors Curse

Links etc.

Universal Link – all the major e-book stores)  https://www.books2read.com/WarriorsCurse

Amazon.com audio http://amzn.to/2Ei0EGe

 

Print

https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1534782052/

The Warrior’s Curse also appears in Here Be Monsters

books2read.com/HereBeMonstersBundle

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Here Be Monsters Bundle – Now on Preorder

I am delighted to announce the latest in the Myth, Monsters and Mayhem series of fantasy bundles. Here Be Monsters is now available on preorder.

Here Be Monsters

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We love to fear them and fight them. Monsters come in many forms, from the monsters within to the monsters outside and under the bed. Dare you venture into the caverns and the castles? Dare you enter the darkness of an accursed soul?

An eclectic collection of dark creatures and those who fight them. You have been warned.

Here Be Monsters features 19 tales of myths, monsters, and mayhem.

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Universal Link books2read.com/HereBeMonstersBundle

Amazon https://amzn.to/2JKTGrX

Kobo https://www.kobo.com/gb/en/ebook/here-be-monsters-10

Barnes and Noble http://bit.ly/2JBwvUY

I-books https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id1397846083

Bundlerabbit https://bundlerabbit.com/b/here-be-monsters

Featuring

  1. Monster Town” by Steven Savile
  2. “The Magic of Fabulous” by Michele Lang
  3. “A Murder of Crows” by DeAnna Knippling
  4. “Minotaur” by DJ Chamberlain
  5. “Tales of Erana: The Warrior’s Curse” by A. L. Butcher
  6. “Blackbeard’s Aliens” by Robert Jeschonek
  7. “Caught Between Monsters” by Stefon Mears
  8. “Night Terrors” by J.A. Pitts
  9. “Beasts of Tabat” by Cat Rambo
  10. “Demon Daze” by Deb Logan
  11. “A Knot of Trolls” by J.M. Ney-Grimm
  12. “The Stolen Tower” by A. L. Butcher
  13. “The Maker, the Teacher, and the Monster” by Leah Cutter
  14. “One Red Shoe” by Russ Crossley
  15. “Dawn of the Chupacabra” by Kyle Bergersen
  16. “To Be a Monster” by Jamie Ferguson
  17. “The Beast of Talesend” by Kyle Robert Shultz
  18. “Children of the Monster” by Russ Crossley
  19. “The Genie’s Secret” by Robert Jeschonek

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