All posts filed under: Writing

The Multimedia Angle—The Use of Journals, Videos, and Book Quotes In Books

Welcome to author Laura Diamond, who is guest posting about modern-day epistolary form. But first, a little bit about her dystopian YA novel, Dawn of the Vie! (And be sure to check out the giveaway at the bottom of the post). Share this on Facebook>>> DAWN OF THE VIE IMMORTAL ALIENS BOOK ONE Laura Diamond Genre: Young Adult scifi/dystopian Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press Date of Publication:  October 3, 2016 Number of pages: 320 approx Word Count:  80,000 Cover Artist: Curiosity Quills Book Description: Since their Arrival less than 30 years ago, immortal Vie rule the planet like the super-predators they are. Enslaved humans are their servants…their entertainment…and their food. Anemies—humans with various types of anemia—are simply exterminated. Their nutritionally deficient blood is useless to the Vie. Or so it’s thought… Alex, an Elite Vie, is a bit of a Renaissance Alien. Part scientist, part Raid Specialist, part drug addict, he knows Anemie blood is valuable. Rather than blindly carrying out his boss’s kill order, he convinces some colleagues to spare a few Anemies, not only …

Writing the Modern Gothic

Guest post by Marie Treanor Gothic romance is an old literary genre, about as old as the novel itself, stretching back to the days when the word “romance” meant fantasy more than just a love story. But Gothic horror like Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein and John Polidori’s The Vampyr have a timeless charm, as we see in much more recent films and books based on these stories. Bram Stoker’s Dracula, probably still the best known Gothic horror novel ever, has its roots in Polidori’s earlier, shorter work. Share this on Facebook>>> One of the timeless elements of Gothic is the mingling of horror and romance. Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey was written as a skit on the Gothic novel craze of its day. Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre brings us both the mad woman in the attic and the archetypal Gothic hero in the dark, brooding and deeply flawed Mr. Rochester. I grew up with those books, and with Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca. I devoured Victoria Holt’s novels, and Mary Stewart’s and emerged as a writer with a …

Writing the Gothic Romance

The Dead of Haggard Hall Darke of Night Book One Marie Treanor Genre: Gothic/historical/paranormal romance Publisher: Samhain Publishing Date of Publication: 26th July 2016 ISBN: 978-1619235830 ASIN: B01CUOPRZQ Number of pages: 216 (paperback) Word Count: 71,000 Cover Artist: Kelly Martin Book Description: Spirit possession is easy to remedy. Possession of the heart is another matter. After vicar’s widow and natural medium Barbara Darke loses her respectable teaching position, she reluctantly agrees to become companion to her former pupil Emily, now the bride of young Sir Arthur Haggard. Once settled at Haggard Hall, Barbara finds her friend is beset by ghostly voices and unexplained deaths. In a maelstrom of dark spirits and wicked emotions, Barbara battles to lay Emily’s ghosts to rest—both hampered and helped by Arthur’s skeptical cousin Patrick, who provokes and attracts her in equal measure. It would be a mistake to trust a secretive, guilt-ridden man suspected of driving his wife to suicide, if not outright murdering her. And it could well be lethal to give in to her own desires, confused as …

What is Western Gothic?

By Clark Hays and Kathleen McFall, noted (at least by each other) authorities in the field of Western Gothic studies Western Gothic is a fairly narrow but very deep and wildly entertaining literary genre. We say that as recognized (by each other) experts in the field of Western Gothic Studies, a field and (and likely a genre) we created, and with all the confidence an exhaustive, seconds-long Google search can bestow (see sidebar). So what is Western Gothic? It is a style of fiction that transplants the moody, death-obsessed themes of classic gothic fiction (think Castle of Otranto or, of course, Dracula) to the wide open, inspiring vistas of the modern west (Riders of the Purple Sage, or All the Pretty Horses). We’re pretty sure we invented the genre with The Cowboy and the Vampire Collection, a series of four books set in the modern west and featuring sexy, brooding vampires bent on world domination. We wrote the first book — The Cowboy the Vampire: A Very Unusual Romance — in 1999. Our fourth and …

The Bizarre and Fantastic: How Fairy Tales Transformed my Novel

There was a grotesque eloquence in which the Grimm Brothers carried out their stories. I vividly remember hearing about how bloody the original Cinderella was compared to the happy go lucky Disney version. There were still talking animals in the original. They weren’t friends with Cinderella but rather just tattled on the Step Sisters whose desperation for status led them to chop at their own feet. Share this on Facebook>>> “The girl cut a piece off of her heel, forced her foot into the shoe, and swallowed the pain.” Reading that now, makes my stomach churn. Such simple text but the beauty comes in their message. The bizarre and fantastic can be a vehicle to open a dialogue to discuss the greater themes in literature. Choice and the overarching idea of selflessness have always been topics that intrigued me. Each of the Grimm Brother’s stories had a lesson of morality. They are meant to teach but before that can be digested the reader is led through a maze of the strange. I loved the fairy …

writing humor

Laughing at the Devil

Hi, I’m Lexi George, and I write Southern-fried paranormal romance about hunky, immortal demon hunters in the Deep South. When I started writing Demon Hunting in Dixie, the first book in the demon hunter series, I didn’t set out to write funny. It just happened. My heroine had this dog, see, and the dog started talking, and that was that. It’s hard to be serious when you’ve got a talking dog. Share this on Facebook>>> I’ve thought a lot about why I write funny, and I still don’t have The Answer. I think it might have something to do with my dad. He was a very funny guy, even when he wasn’t trying to be. We’d be in the car, going somewhere, and some pokey driver would get in front of him, and he’d say, “If I was going to hell in a bucket, there’d be some sumbitch in front of me.” Oh, and here’s another favorite: “If I had a house at the beach and a home in hell, I’d go home.” Then, again, …

William Blake mystic poetry

William Blake’s Mystic Muse

William Blake (1757-1827) took an avant-garde approach to art at a time when the establishment ruled, and for that he paid a price. He was a tradesman and a tradesman’s son, when tradesmen were not supposed to be making art, and he paid for it. He believed that poetry should be accessible to everyone, and not just the over-educated elite, and he paid for that too. Share this on Facebook>>> But it was his muse, mysticism, that he paid the greatest price of all for. Mysticism propelled him into a form of art and poetry well before his time. But it also turned him into a mockery. Blake heard voices that compelled him to keep following his artistic vision even though well-meaning friends urged him to quit. He had visions, which he painted and wrote about. And he incorporated mystic symbolism into much of his work. There are two basic definitions of the mystic. The first definition: A mystic is someone who has transformed themselves so they can perceive the world differently, seeing the divine …