There's a crazy-cool giveaway going on. I hope you will enter. There's an Amazon gift card and lots of free books up for grabs!
I've decided to publish Blood Day through Hellzapoppin Press (the same way all my others are published). So it now has a Goodreads page! Yay! I'm not allowed to format on Goodreads, so I'll also post the description here, in case you haven't seen it on this website yet. I hope some of you will consider adding it to you to-read lists. Very excited.
I've set the release date for December 15, but that may change later.
This is the way the world ends...
It happened quietly and without violence. While the world was intoxicated on a prescription drug nicknamed Slack, the Revenants came. They took over governments across the world and started changing everything. Illness and disease were no more. Poverty was eradicated and no human went hungry so long as they followed the rules. And in return, the Revenants asked for only one thing: blood. Such a tiny thing. A small blood donation every month to enable the Revs to survive. Soon, however, it was every fortnight. Then every week. That's when the children started to disappear.
In this valley of dying stars...
Jane Rossi is an addict. After the Revs made Slack illegal, it was only available on the black market. Criminals made a fortune off of it and, one cold night, Jane killed for it. Caught and picked up by Movers in dark vans, Jane was taken to rehabilitate. She was sure she would be forced to become a full-time donor, like all the other Disobedients; but the Revs had something else in mind for her. Something to do with the rebel vampire Joshua Flynn.
Eyes I dare not meet in dreams...
Mike Novak was a great reporter once. But after attempting to print a story filled with truths instead of propaganda, Mike is on the run. Hunted by Revs, not even Mike's friends in the Underworld can help him. He is penniless and friendless and in fear for his life. Until he is approached by a dark man who has a purpose for him. Joshua Flynn wants the truth, and he wants Mike to write it.
In death's twilight kingdom...
Genevieve White is a widow who has lost her child. They came into her home on a dark moonless night and when they left, her boy was gone. After the death of her husband, Viv is alone and terrified. She follows the rules, shows up for her Blood Day, and doesn't make a fuss. But she has a secret. Her husband left something behind, something that could change everything. If only she has the courage to use it.
The only hope of empty men...
Joshua Flynn is old. Tired and ancient. His kind is dead, replaced by monsters without purpose, vampires without power. He has vowed to stop them, to bring back the old ways. But to bring the Revenants to their knees, he must work with his prey. With humans. And even if he brings the new order down, the darkness and beauty and blood of the old ways may very well die with him.
This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
Not with a bang but a whimper.
Okay, so I don't usually post stuff about movies here, but for some reason I'm stupid, crazy excited about the Guardians of the Galaxy. So I'm posting this new extended trailer here just because IT'S FREAKING AWESOME.
It's been a lazy, uneventful holiday weekend and I love it. Unfortunately, I've not written very much, but I've had a blast with my family. So since I usually blog about books and book-related stuff, I thought I'd do a post that was just about what's been going on.
First, I chopped off my hair. Yay! Here is a very sleepy picture of me with my new short hair.
I love having short hair again. I live in Hawaii so it's usually pretty hot here. And also, I'm usually so distracted that with long hair I will go around with a french fry in my hair or something all day and not even think to look in a mirror. Two problems solved!
I've been getting really irritated with social media lately, so I've been trying to stay away from Facebook and whatnot until it stops annoying me. Or at least until I can manage reading things on there without being filled with a bubbling rage. This is how Facebook makes me feel right now.
I haven't been technically working, but I have been mulling over ideas to use in Blood Day, and a plot for a project that I'm hoping to work on after the sequel to Jenny Undead is written. I'll only tell you that I listened to Willie Nelson and Johnny Cash all day. AND THAT'S ALL YOU'LL GET FROM ME.
Okay, it's sort of a weird Western. AND THAT'S IT.
FINE. It's loosely based off of the outlaw known as the Kentucky Cannibal, who is a direct relative of mine that ran with the Henry Plummer gang. It's going to be so much fun to write. I get to do lots of research and delve into the history of my family. He's sort of a big deal in our family, and we always take pictures of his grave on Boot Hill whenever one of us goes to Virginia City.
That's about my weekend. We had a Harry Potter movie marathon, but only made it through three (it's pretty hard to top the third one, anyway).
I made pancakes this morning.
I ordered way too many beanbag chairs. Because writers are crazy and crazy writers have living rooms full of beanbag chairs. And also I didn't want to go into the city to buy chairs.
I've been in my pajamas since Thursday night.
I'm going to write now. This blog post makes no sense and I'm suddenly feeling like this weekend is way too quirky.
What with Blood Day being all about...well...blood, I thought this blood infographic might come in handy.
It's weird being a writer.
Most of the time I feel just on the verge of falling down the rabbit hole. As though if I don't hold myself together very tightly, I will go careening into the universe in a mess of atoms and whatever I ate that day for lunch. It's exhausting holding my molecules together. But it's worth it when I put all the words together and make something incredible. A book. There is no greater reward.
When I sleep, it all falls apart. I have incredibly vivid dreams usually involving something terrifying chasing me or my family members. I wake up and it's like I didn't sleep at all. But that doesn't stop me from staying up until the wee hours because I'm absolutely wide awake when the world is sleeping. It's when I work the best.
I think when you tap into a certain part of the imagination as often as I do, you thin the boundaries that separate dreams from reality. It's why writers are so eccentric (crazy) and likely why some find themselves in a hospital (mental asylum) one day.
My husband claims that writing full time has turned me into "hot mess." I'm stuck in that fantasy world from the time I write the first word to the moment where I type "the end." It's a running joke in our house.
Don't mind Mom, she's working on a book. She's not really here right now.
Except the more I do this job, the less time there is between books. It used to be that I'd have to take a month off, sometimes more, just to recover after finishing a book. Sometimes I'd cry a little (Hello. Book three of Niki Slobodian DESTROYED me). Then I'd feel a little better, and a little better. Then one day I'd have an itch and I'd start the next one.
It took me a day the last time.
I didn't even finish editing Niki 5 before I started plotting Blood Day. And I've been in it ever since. And Blood Day is DARK. Maybe the darkest I've ever worked on. Am I insane to keep doing this to myself? Well, yes, I am. But sometimes I feel I'm not so much a person as a writer who is sometimes a person. I'm a hot mess all the time now. I miss appointments. I run out of gas. And my nightmares are crazier than ever. But you know, I think it's worth it.
People read this thing you made. It used to be nothing, and now it's a thing. And sometimes, if you're lucky, and you work very hard, they will say to you, "You made this thing, and it's beautiful. I love this thing. This is the best thing I have ever read. Can you make more things?"
Yes. I will make things. Always. And it doesn't matter how long it takes, or how much I have to work to get it done, I will make more things. And I hope that someday, someone else will find them beautiful, too.
I fall down the rabbit hole over and over. But it's okay, because that's what I'm supposed to do. I'm a writer.
I'm going to occasionally offer guest posts by other authors, readers, and reviewers. K.G. Arndell is a writer and has the pleasure (cough *misfortune* cough) of being my first guest author in this series. You can find his books here. So without further adieu, K.G. Arndell, everyone.
What if? That’s how it always starts—with that imperative tug inside the fiction writer’s head, pulling them persistently out of what we call the real world and into that other one. The romance writer may well imagine a tale of unrequited love. The literary novelist might be stirred by the idea of an Oedipus-type of story with a different twist.
Me, I wonder what would happen in the moments after one of the wings is sheared away from the airplane I’m flying in, ripped from the fuselage like a crispy Thanksgiving turkey wing and flung out into space, the broken bird with the screaming people inside spinning toward the earth, and death.
Why? What might happen to cause such a thing? Well, one of the maintenance guys forgot to tighten a screw, or check a rivet, or whatever, because he was thinking about the argument he had with his wife that morning.
Again, why? Well, it seems she’s been acting pretty weird lately, and he suspects her of screwing around on him. What he doesn’t know—but what I do—is that his wife is not having an affair at all, but a quiet nervous breakdown because she keeps seeing her dead brother’s ghost flitting around the house.
And so now we’re all going to die.
I think about the elevator cable snapping, the car plunging thirty floors, and looking into the other bloodless, stricken faces while my mind gibbers all the way down. Because pink rain has begun falling from a gray sky, and it burns like acid. It’s already eaten a hole in the roof and, as luck would have it, found its way to the cable pulley.
Consequently, they’re going to be picking us up with spatulas.
Train wrecks. Car crashes. Murder and general mayhem.
Why do I think about this stuff? Moreover, what would ever possess me to write about it?
Actually, I think the second question springs from the first. If you eliminate the ghost and the caustic rain from the aforementioned scenarios, what’s left are real fears. My fears. I live with them every single day. Maybe you do too.
So I write, and that chases away the ghosts, so to speak. It keeps me sane. Mostly. And anyway, it’s cheaper than therapy. Maybe I include an element of fantasy in my work because it helps me keep it together in a world with more than enough real problems to go around. It creates a counterbalance.
Because really, at the end of the day, when the screws start to come lose—and they always do, eventually—it’s what goes on out there in that place we call the real world that scares the hell out of me.
K.G. Arndell is a writer of suspense, fantasy, science fiction and horror, essentially anything that falls under the speculative fiction umbrella.
K.G. has had a life-long love affair with books. He was weaned on authors such as Kurt Vonnegut, Ray Bradbury, Richard Matheson, Arthur C. Clarke and H.G. Wells. Books were always strewn everywhere about the big white house in Indiana where he grew up. Though he loves literary works (Dickens and Twain, for instance), his main fascination lies in the fantastic and the macabre, probably because he was so heavily exposed to it early on.
Later, he discovered Robert McCammon, Dean Koontz, F. Paul Wilson, Dan Simmons, Ramsey Campbell, and (God help us, everyone) Stephen Edwin King, as well as several others, and the die was indelibly cast.
K.G. now lives with his wife in southern California.
Buy all of his books here. Do it. Do it now.
This is a creepy short sci-fi film. It's only about 7 minutes long, but it is definitely not for the faint of heart. I'd love to write some futuristic sci-fi like this someday.
If you're on Spotify (or even if you're not), you can listen to the playlist that is inspiring Blood Day. Lots of creepy, vampiry goodness.
J.L. Murray is the bestselling author of the Niki Slobodian series, After the Fire, and Jenny Undead.