Monday, October 31, 2011


Well, today is the day. It's also the last day of the month. I was going to post something about Halloween, but I'm really out of time. I can't believe this day has just flown! I've been entering all sorts of contests all over the place and won one (I talk about it on my other blog Lorelei's Writing Journal).

Since I made homemade cookies last weekend, my husband found some Pillsbury chocolate chip cookies you bake and he made these for us. They are yummy!

Tis the time of year for "comfort food" and I'm making brown sugar meatloaf. I haven't made it in a while. We've been using Hunt's brand catchup because they have no fructose in it at all--the first ones to do this!

Anyway, if you'd like to try it here is my recipe for the sauce (make your meatloaf the way you want),

3 T. catchup
2T. brown sugar
2 t. Dijon mustard (if you have only yellow use that, but we like Dijon)

Mix in a small bowl and brush on top and bake as usual.

We live way out in the country, and so we don't get any trick or treaters. Darn! I used to have such fun (Dennis too) getting all geared up and then doing the Halloween scary thing in the yard, but oh well. I do miss it, however.

I've had so little time this weekend to do much writing. I'm still working on the short story. Maybe I'll get something done once November gets here and I'm not pressed for time. No NaNo for this girl! I hope to get some time to write then, since things will probably really be quiet in the blog-sphere.

I will announce winner from my own contest on Tuesday. And I've got an interview going up tomorrow, and I will post the link once I get it.

Now all we have to look forward to is Thanksgiving, and then Christmas and then New Years. . . .

Hope you all have a Happy and safe Halloween!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Other Contests Going On for October

Hey, I've been so busy looking around at all the other contests going on. I'm part of the Coffin Hop, of course, and have my own contest going on. But there are others out there and I'm going to tell you where you can find a few of them.

First up we have Meradeth's Write Stuff   This is pretty simple to win and you can win your choice of 4 books AND have Meradeth  cretique 20 pages of your WIP. Hey, that's a pretty good thing, I think.

I also went over to Rachel McCellan's blog Blackbird In My Window.
This too has a writing contest going on. You can place 300 words from your manuscript here and enter your first chapter for a really unique opportunity to have it read and judged by an acquisitions editor. You don't want to miss that.

So, there you have it. Two pretty nice contests. Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 27, 2011


Wait... What I meant was 99 FOLLOWERS!

Yes. I have 99 followers. Uh . . . I can't see who they are. No. Really. I can't. If you don't believe me, go look at my Follower's window on the right hand side. If you can see them, then I'm stumped. I don't know who you are unless you've made a comment at some point. I wish I knew what you all looked like. Bummer. I mean, you might just look like Mr. Gooly here!

So. What does this mean? That means only one more follower needs to add themselves to my FOLLOWERS list, and I've made a milestone.


I really didn't think it would be possible to reach 100 people following me this year. I mean I was watching it edge toward 50 at one time earlier this year. I couldn't believe I hit 60 and then 70 and then 80...

And I have all of you new people to thank, as well as those of you who have been stopping in once in a while to wipe your feet and set a spell and jaw.

So, what does this mean? I think it means I need to have a give away.

I have two copies of VAMPIRE ASCENDING waiting to be autographed to TWO PEOPLE--anyone in the U.S. who has not got a copy and would like one. All you have to do is come on down, wipe off your feet, let your fingers do the typing and LEAVE A COMMENT. Let me know what you're doing for Halloween, or why you like vampires.

Contest will end midnight Halloween. Winners will be chosen and announced on Nov. 3rd
My new release is due out in a few short weeks, so you really don't want to be left behind.

Oh, and if you are new to this blog, please become a follower and tell me so!


Tuesday, October 25, 2011


In this book, just like in the first book--for those of you who have read it--I take you on another adventure in the life of Sabrina Strong. My basic motto when I began to write this series was "nothing is as it seems". I hope to keep you poised at the edge. I know you want to know more about Vasyl--you will be reading a little bit about him here.

There is a new neighbor, Bill Gannon--how will he figure into everything? And what has happened to Sabrina's friend, Jeanie Woodbine? Her parents must be frantic about her, since no body has been found.

And don't forget there is still the unsolved murder of Dee Dee Cole and her unborn baby, and some odd business about someone setting fire to certain houses in the area. Are these two things somehow connected?

Then there's that unfinished business between Sabrina and Nicolas, as well as who exactly was behind Jeanie's abduction. Who indeed? Why couldn't Sabrina see the face of the person who abducted her when she had the vision?

Plus there is the business of Sabrina finding out exactly what she is, and gains the prophecy through the medium who happens to be her neighbor Mrs. Bench.

Hmmm. I think I will leave you with a phone conversation between Sabrina and Bill Gannon (new character) today for Teaser Tuesday.

In five strides, I picked up the cordless in the kitchen. When I said “hello” there was a slight pause. I felt some sort of dread fill me, and it was dread with a capital D.
Sabrina?” The voice was not exactly unfamiliar, but over the phone, it wasn't a voice I knew.
Speaking. Who is this?” Which really perturbed me because I always knew who was on the other end of the phone. This time I didn't.
This is Bill . . . from across the way,” he said, his voice sounded a little craggy as though he had just woke up. “You need to get over here. Now.”
Now?” I said. Again another male telling me what I should do. “Why? What's going on?”
The portal into the Nether World is opening up. You need to get here, Sabrina. Do not delay.” He hung up before I could question him further.
Perplexed, I stared at the phone. That inkling of dread that I'd had after I'd answered the phone now grew. And after thinking about it, it mushroomed. Something is happening to Mrs. Bench.

Sunday, October 23, 2011


It begins, my pretties! The Coffin Hop, involving horror fiction writers from all over. This is my offering for the Hop:
Copy of Vampire Ascending - you have choice of eBook or a paperback. One winner will be chosen using on November 1st and I will announce winner on Wednesday November 2nd.
Each section will give you points accordingly when you complete them.
Here are the rules:

You must be participant of Coffin Hop to win.
I will give you 13 things to hunt for in 6 of my blogs and then you must come back here and leave comment below in order of items asked for from each blog. You must leave a way for me to contact you in your comment.

Are you ready? Here you go. Good luck.
    From Lorelei's Muse (4 points):
    1. What two blog awards were given to Lorelei's Muse?
  1. 2. What is the name of the author who I am hosting this Wednesday (26th) find it here:
    COFFIN HOP. And what book is he going to talk about?
    3. where am I located (live)?
    4. Whose picture is on the bottom (footer) of this blog?

  2. From Vampire Writer's Retreat (3 points):
    1. What main background colors are uses on this blog?
    2. What am I a “proud sponsor” of?
    3. A picture of who is 3rd from top on right hand side?
  1. In title of a post who answers The Underwear Challenge?
  2. In this same post what creature appears in the main characters' living room?
  3. What color are his eyes?
  4. What is COMING SOON ? - (right-hand side panel)
From Lorelei's Archives – 2 points:
  1. Scene from Book #4 “Crescendo” - whose name appears at very beginning?
  2. Whose picture do I have below my book's cover?

  1. List the 3 main characters shown on right hand side.
  2. How old is Nicolas Padauru?
1. What 3 awards has this blog been awarded?

The contest is over at midnight on October 31st.

Saturday, October 22, 2011


So, you're in this strange neighborhood and want to see if you can scare up some damn darn good fun while trick-r-treating, and you stop at this house. Looks pretty creepy. There's some decorations in the window and spooky music playing and the lady of the house is damn darn good looking too.

She says "Welcome, and come in. I have something wonderful to GIVE you!"

 You aren't quite sure if you should have anything to drink out of that vat of--ewww! What the hell heck is that stuff?
You hedge about having anything she gives you and explain you have to "drive"--yeah right like that always works! But you ask if there isn't anything else she might have to give you, instead.

She says, "Why yes. But you'll have to be clever and really work at it and you can have this book."

"What's the book?" you ask.

"It's a wonderful book, and you can have it free! It's about vampires, shiftchangers, werewolves and, I might add--" she wiggles those strange calligraphic eyebrows at you "--hot men and sex scenes. You'd like that, wouldn't you?"She smiles evilly as though she can read your thoughts. Well, she did, but that's beside the point.

"Well, uh, sure. What do I have to do to get it?"

She laughs demonically. In fact you think she's a bit deranged, and you think about backing out of the door, but a guy has just creeped up behind you and scares the living shit crap poop pee of you.

Mr. Goolie
"You must come back on the 24th, Monday, and I will tell you exactly what you must do to earn the free book. There will be a scavenger hunt on this and other blogs," she explains. "And . . . if you don't return, I'll have Mr. Goolie come looking for you!"

That's when you bolt out the door. You hear her and Mr. Goolie laughing and they chime together saying, "Come back on Monday, or you'll be sooooorrrrrryyyyyy!"

Thursday, October 20, 2011


Third Campaigner Challenge : Show Not Tell
Write blog post in 300 words or less, excluding the title. The post can be in any format, (flash fiction, non-fiction, humorous, poem, etc.
- It's morning
- a man or a woman (or both) is at the beach
- that the main character is bored
- that something stinks behind where he/she is sitting
- that something surprising happens.
Involve all five senses AND include these random words: “synbatec,” “wastopaneer,” and, “tacise”.

Here is my offering. You'll guess what genre right away, I'm sure. I not only used 5 senses, but the 6th one as well.

The Synbatec Island Caper

The sand felt like warm topaz between Zofia's bare toes, while watching her husband. Dorian's dark head stood out against the turquoise expanse of sea and sky. Broad shoulders held stiffly, he kept vigil.
Leaning forward, elbows resting on her knees, chin resting in the cup of her hands, she sat on a large piece of driftwood. She ran the back of one hand across her sweaty brow watching little crabs race back and forth from the water's edge.
Why isn't he here?” she shouted above the crashing tide. Strands of her hair, loosened by the cooling breeze, caught in her mouth. She spit the salty bits out making unlady-like noises.
Stephen said he'd be here by morning,” Dorian said.
It's nearly mid-day,” she pointed out.
The material of her wastopaneer, and the sleeves of her blouse stuck to her. She undid several buttons, and wanted to rid herself of all of her outer clothing. “
The breeze that had been blowing her hair against her cheek and neck abated. The stench of something that smelled like rotting meat reached her.
Goddess! What is that smell!” Jumping from her spot, a chill ran over her arms, a sense of foreboding rising in her. She stared at the log as though it were the source of the offending smell.
Brows rumpling, Dorian said, “Darling, your wastopaneer is showing.”
Zofia looked down and found that her wastopaneer was showing. Quickly she buttoned up.
Stephen will be here shortly.”
But there's something dead over there!” She pointed.
Dead? Really?” He hedged forward, straining his neck. “Where?”
There!” Zofia nudged him. “It might be a wild tacise!”
No,” Dorian peered behind the log Zofia had been sitting on. His eyes going huge he breathed, “It's Stephen. Dead!”
Then the killer is here!”

If you liked this, it is #82 at Rach Writes

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


 I'm very excited about the Coffin Hop! It's the first blog hop I have ever been a part of. A bunch of horror fiction writers are participating and there will be prizes and just to make it all interesting we've all come up with our own inventive ways of getting each other to our blogs and look around some with these contests.

I am very excited because my sequel, Vampire's Trill is soon to be released in November, and I am having my own contest to win the first book Vampire Ascending as an eBook!
But to make it interesting I'm going to have a scavenger hunt and it will have something to do with the #13, and a visit to more than one of my blogs! I will make the announcement next Monday. So swing by.
ALSO! You don't want to miss this! Another horror fiction author will be a guest on my blog on the 26th (Wednesday), and he is having a fabulous give away.
Awesome John Everson
 Horror author, John Everson's The Pumpkin Man has just come out and he is doing the tour and you really want to come and be part of that.

 And many of my friends will drop in. And we'll have a hopping good time. I hope they're all hungry! Looks like it, doesn't it?
And we'll try and remove the stake from Dracula's chest--he looks so uncomfortable . . . and a little pissed. Well I would be too!

Don't forget! October 24-Halloween! I wouldn't want you to be left behind . . .

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

TEASER TUESDAY ~ Who wants double-dipped Vasyl?

Okay. Okay.

As you know I've been doing the Teaser Tuesdays and using short scenes from my second book, Vampire's Trill, trying to fan the fires of interest in all of you. As if I need to, right?

Today I'm going to pull a scene where Vasyl has come into Sabrina's house for the very first time. And he is nummy.

Before I do this, however, and because I don't want you all panting and frustrated, wondering when this book is due out, I just got word from my publisher it is due out "EARLY NOVEMEBER".

Withou further ado: from Chapter 11

I turned to see Vasyl's gaze rise to take me in. He seemed larger than I remembered. At least several inches taller than myself. Which was a surprise, since when he was a living man people were not very tall. He was nearly as tall as Tremayne. I guessed he must be six-six.
Invite me in, Sabrina.”
Please come in, Vasyl.” I stepped back, holding the door open for him.
Cautious steps brought him over the threshold. He seemed unreal, to me. Like someone who had stepped out of my childhood dreams. Actually he had. He threw off enough pheromones to drop an elephant. My skin hummed, my scalp crawled, I imagined my hair was sticking out like I'd touched one of those static balls at the Museum of Science and Industry.
Do not resist me, cherie,” he said, head lowered to gaze at me with beautiful eyes. Up till now I'd thought his eyes were warm-brown, but I was mistaken. In the glow of the small lamp situated behind him, and those from my bedroom, I could see they were a dark blue. Almost violet. Perhaps they were.
Who's resisting? You can't be real,” I said, my heart thumping inside my chest as I neared him, taking him in; his beautiful face, coiled black hair, and broad white chest. He looked like a rock star, and totally out of his element standing in my dining room. He needed an electric guitar or something to bring it all together. I'd never seen him wear shoes, and he didn't tonight. The white shirt (a companion to the one he had given me to wear, and was still in my closet) draped on him, open in the front, had my eyes tracing the edges of where his chest and abdomen was exposed, right to where his faded jeans hung low on his hips—yowza . Both ears were pierced, and when I looked close—my God—tinny gold crosses with small diamonds in their centers dangled from each ear. How could he wear them? His answer to my absurd question interrupted my thoughts on a vampire wearing dangling crucifix earrings.
I am very real, cherie.”
Can I touch you?” I asked, nervous of his answer either way. “Without you touching me, I mean?”
S'il vous plaĆ®t, Sabrina. Please, touch me all you wish,” he said in an inviting tone, moving his arms out to his sides to allow me to approach him, showing me he wouldn't touch me—and I trusted he wouldn't bring his arms around me to trap me against himself. He stood stone still, only his eyes watching me.
And block me from picking up thoughts and emotions from you, please?” Normally I couldn't get a read from a vampire. But I worried because I'd had his blood.
Oui, I shall do so,” he agreed.
I moved in closer, my trembling hand reaching up toward his long glistening hair. It came to below his waist in the back, and in the front, it grew to his waist in loose coils. Incredibly thick and heavy, it was a wonder his head didn't snap off from the weight of it all. I took a bit of it in my fingers and marveled at how silky it felt. His face looked like chiseled alabaster, the large crimson lips almost the only color. His large dark eyes, and hair contrasting so that if he stood naked in the snow, that's all you would see of him. But it was enough.
Closer, cherie, closer,” he whispered. “I will not harm you. I have fed well tonight and do not require your blood.”
With the invitation I wavered on an unseen knife's edge between reality and my dream world. He was here, the man—vampire—of my dreams, in my house! The things I'd dreamt I would do to him. And here I was with my irritating monthly. I was never the aggressor in any relationship I'd ever had—all two of them. Dante had been a gentle lover, but unarguably the aggressive one. But this was all new to me. Whether it was a regular man, or vampire, it didn't matter. Vampires were very aggressive, as sex and blood lust drove them to choose their partners with care, as they wanted someone they could come to on a continuous, nightly bases, and were jealous of their donors and wouldn't allow anyone else to touch them. It made for a really one-sided relationship, unless the human had no problem being a vampire's paramour. At the moment, I didn't want to think about this part. I wanted to act out my dreams, just this once.
I moved a bit closer; breathing in his scent. Every vampire had his, or her own scent. I gathered that they probably sniffed us for exactly that same reason. His was a mixture of the aroma of an exotic flower, newly tilled earth—and now I could detect old leather, like saddle leather. It reminded me of horses. The barn where he slept held horses. I knew now that he fed from these animals, instead of hunting humans.
Touch me,” he whispered. “Do not be afraid.” He tilted his head back and closed his eyes, arms out. “I ache for your touch, mon amour.”
I wasn't afraid of him. I was in awe of him.
copyright Lorelei Bell

Monday, October 17, 2011

Halloween Decore, and a few Goulishly Wonderful Announcements!


Did I frighten you? Sor-r-r-y. But this big fellow would look nice in the entryway, don't you think? Or hung outside from a limb his tattered robes catching the wind. SPOOKY!!!

Here is another offering from Pumpkin Hollow :

 Next Monday begins a blog hop for horror fiction writers--COFFIN HOP. I will be participating, since this looks like fun. I have no idea exactly what we'll do throughout, but there is going to be a scavanger hunt to get us going from blog to blog. Some participants are offering give-aways. I've not decided as to whether I will have a give-away at this point, but I might give away a book. We'll see.
 I also have another wonderful announcement--I will be hosting John Everson here on the 26th (next Wednesday). He definitely has a great give away, so you won't want to miss this! I'm so excited he has given me a date to be on my blog!

Lastly but not least, I'm working on a short story for publication. I'm not going to go into detail. Short stories have never been my forte', and I've rarely sold them (except to Weed's Corner). I will keep you informed. I don't want to say too much about it at this point.

Check back next week so you don't miss out on all the fun!

Happy Haunting!!!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

John Everson - Oujiga Boards and Scary Urban Legends

Hello, my lovelies! How are you this wickedly splendid Saturday? Have you carved your pumpkins yet? Or ... are you waiting for someone to do that for you--hummmm?

Well I thought I would pass this along with a personal note as well. If you like contests to win books and other things you might want to go to Fangtastic Books and check out the contest going on with author John Everson's The Pumpkin Man, which is out now, but he's got some really cool prizes including music, signed copies of his books and so on.

I can happily say I've met John a few years back at the DeKalb Borders, and just to prove it, here's a picture of me and the other author they had there, Mike Kleen, who writes about known ghosts around Illinois.
Authors: John Everson, Lorelei Bell, Mike Kleen
 I had not been to an author signing before just to meet authors, and this was a great time to relax and meet two horror writers at the time. When I read John Everson's books his writing reminds me of horror writers of the 1980's. There's a method to his madness. Believe me his books are excellent. And I got a first book signed by him, Covenant, at the time (yay me!!), and he lives only 40 minutes away from me too.

Well, now he's written another one that is based on an urban legend. There is also Ouija board usage in it. It sounds really creepy about a serial killer who carves the faces of his victims on pumpkins and leaves them in place of the heads. Gruesome, for sure. If you ever met John you wouldn't believe he could come up with such things. But, hey, I do too, and you would probably say the same thing about me.

I've included the site to this and there's gobs of things to check out here, the prologue, store, plus cool/creepy music as well, just hit the link below. You can even try out the Ouija Board--if you dare!!!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Main Feature Friday ~ The Spy Who Bit Me - Second Instalment

Hello my pretties. Since I had a special feature last Friday, I didn't post my short story, so here is the next instalment, and for those of you who missed the first one, go HERE first to read that.

Now I sense him. The male scent is peculiar, not as sweet, but rather coppery and sweaty. Sensing this second intruder in my happy hunting grounds knocks me off my game, not to mention the delicious fantasy I was having was driven out of my head. My only thought now is to protect my kill—my potential kill, that is. I didn't care who, or what this guy was, but I was sure he was up to no good. No matter if he was a rapist or the tax collector, she was mine.

Stealthily I move forward with the ease of a tiger in the wilds. Now I see him. He's making his way through the cemetery. The bastard is actually walking over burial plots and that just ain't right. Even I don't walk over the graves of the departed.

Something whizzes past my ear and makes me duck behind a granite headstone as though I were vulnerable to bullets. The projectile traveled so fast that even my keen sight hadn't picked it up. But I hear it smack into a marble statue, somewhere behind me, pieces splinter and fall to the ground like chips of ice on spongecake. At the same moment I smell gun powder telling me I was right about what I'd thought it was, even though the gun never went pop. The lunatic was actually using a silencer!

The blond woman broke into a run, and it was only then that I noticed she carries a briefcase.

I curse under my breath. Everything happens in milliseconds. The man moves in my direction. I smile and wait patiently, hidden behind the tombstone. I hear his big swishing steps, he sounds like an ox he's so flat-footed. I wait until he's right on top of me before I make my move. I jump up, throw a punch. He never sees what hits him. He goes down, belly up like a dead fish, but he's still conscious. I fall on him, straddle him to hold him down because he comes to. He's pretty damned smart too, and now I'm looking at the business end of his gun. If I were human I'd be shitting my pants right now. But I'm not. I've got the upper hand. I grab the gun. It goes off with a dull thunk, thunk, thunk. The guy's stronger than he looks, but I get the gun out of his hand by crushing his fingers until he cries out in pain. I throw the gun as far as I can, hear it clatter somewhere down where Mildred Breakstone lies peacefully. I hit him again, this time harder, not caring that I break his nose and possibly a cheekbone, crease his left eye some. Now he looks more like he went up against Joe Frasier and lost. Finally he goes limp.

Now you stupid shit, you're mine!” I growl and tear open his shirt, ripping his tie in the process. I open my mouth and even though I didn't order male tonight, I had to have something to hold me until I caught up with the gorgeous blond.
©2011 by Lorelei Bell

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Black Macic Sanction ~ Review

I decided I'd better get this review done today, or I'll never do it!

I have enjoyed the series with Rachel Morgan in her world where witches and vampires and so forth exist along side humans who have survived the virus that killed many off. It's way to complicated for me to explain, if you don't follow this series. Anyway, here is a brief synopsis from the book's cover:

"Rachel Morgan has fought and bunted vampires, werewolves, banshees, demons, and other supernatural dangers as both witch and bounty hunter--and lived to tell the tale. But she's never faced off against her own kind...until now. Denounced and shunned for dealing with demons and black magic, her best hope is life imprisonment--at worst, a forced lobotomy and genetic slavery. Only her enemies are strong enough to help her win her freedom, but trust comes hard when it hinges on the unscrupulous tycoon Trent Kalamack, the demon Algaliarept, and an ex-boyfriend turned thief.
It takes a witch to catch a witch, but survival bears a heavy price."

I think what like enjoy about this series is that Rachel is a witch, and she's very independent, but lives with her best buds, Ivy--a living vampire--and Jenks, the pixie. The characters are vivid, realistic, and well developed. It is a series so steeped in rich detail that once you begin working your way through these books, you will look forward to the next one and I'll tell you, I got to the last page of  this one, turned it expecting more, because it was that magic moment where you, as a reader, are there and you expect these people to continue on in their lives. That, I think, is how well developed Kim Harrison's writing has become over the years. I have wanted to read this one since it came out about a year ago. And, I'm sorry if my review is too late for any of you, but if you have not picked this one up, I think you'll enjoy it. Many of the beloved characters are there, and new developments happen--not going to spoil it. And I'll tell you what, when witches make love it's definitely different from human sex. I'm just saying!

So, there you have it for Black Magic Sanction by Kim Harrison.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011








Tuesday, October 11, 2011

TEASER TUESDAY ~ The Morning after

Hey everyone! I've had a great few days off, had a chance to enjoy the last of this golden weather, went with my husband to White Pines State Park. Problem was EVERYBODY was out. But we got in a good hike or two. The colors have been fabulous!

Now on to TEASER TUESDAY. This is a post that others do. We take a few lines from a book we are reading, or--in my case--from my next book about to come out, Vampire's Trill. Thus the tease is that much richer, don't you think?

Okay. I'm not going to set this one up. I'm just slapping it down here:

I understand that you didn't know what you were doing last night. Goes with the territory. But we had a good time, okay? That has to count for something, right?”
I didn't say anything. I didn't want to commit one way or another.
I'll take you home, then.” He pulled on a leather jacket. The one with the white skull logo on it. He handed me a smaller black leather jacket with a lot of fringe. Becky's. Very nice. I heard a set of keys jangle in his hand as he led me out the back door—it stood wide open—and he shut it behind us.

Hope you enjoied. Tomorrow I've got something scheduled as a Blog Hop announcment, hope you check in. You might want to if you are a horror/vampire writer. See you then!

Monday, October 10, 2011

More Ideas for Decorating your yard for Halloween

This one is sort of funny.

Martha Stewart come closer if you dare lit decorations

Martha Steward graveyard
Leave it up to Martha Stewart to have a nicely trimmed graveyard.
This one just for kicks.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Where To Go From Here ~ Advertising

Here it is, Sunday. I need to clean house. But I won't be spending the whole day at it. Mostly I need to hit the bathroom.

Before I do get to that I want to impart some thoughts not on publishing, but promotions. Maybe I should have called this post Gorilla Promotion Tactics--but sounds nasty, so I didn't.

Even if you have a publisher, there is only so much they can do (a small publisher will have some $ to spend on promotions, but after that, it's really up to you). So, my thoughts have been on what to do from here. Sure, I've done the blog hopping, but still, how many people who read our posts are "readers" of fiction, and not just other writers? I love that many of you have gone and purchased a book of mine, and have made reviews. But I know there is a whole big audience out there who still don't know about my book. They might not know about yours either. If you do have $ to spend on your own ads, that's fantastic. But some of us really have a disadvantage as far as getting the word out in a broader area.

Having no budget to speak of really limits me from doing a whole lot. Do I put notes in bottles and send them out? The whole idea of Gorila Advertizing is to spend as little as you can and still get the word out. Putting up little posters on public bilboards, etc. is one inexpensive way to get people to notice. Or do they?

I drive around NIU, and see that people will chalk the sidewalks with everything from "someone loves you" to events going on around campus, etc. Yeah. the thought occurred to me about chalking sidewalks about my book, but a few things sort of prevent me from doing it. One of which is my knees. I'm not about to get down on my knees on a sidewalk. The other thing is I'm not sure how others would like having their sidewalk chalked up and I might get in trouble.

That aside I've been trying to think "outside the box", because Steve Jobs seemed to make that work for him.

I thought about having balloons printed up with my book's title and how to get hold of a copy, or a link.

Why not? I could let loose a bunch let them sail on the winds. They could travel pretty far and wide--mor than a local add would.

Why not? I caught the story about a woman who was looking for a job who sent off balloons with all her contact information inside the balloon, and she actually got job offers because of it!!! Now, that's thinking outside the box!

If I go the traditional route--advertise in a paper--I'd probably reach people, but who knows how many of those people actually look at adds in the back of the paper who are interested in vampire fiction? A balloon catches your attention. Especially if it gets caught in a tree. And when it looses air, someone finds it. Sees what it says, and the chances are that even if they aren't vampire fans, they probably know someone who is.

Anyone out there have a better idea? I'm all out. Chalking sidewalks should be left up to the young crowd.

Also, I'm about to investigate Smashwords. What I'd like to do is put my very first novel (self-published), Spell of the Black Unicorn, on Smashwords as a sort of experiment to see if a). I can do this, and b). whether or not it might pick up sales by offering it as an ebook and at a much lower price.

So, that's what's been bugging me the last few weeks. I'll have to let you know if I'll be able to do the balloon thing. There is a place on-line that will pring balloons up for you, but I know of a local place that might do this, and I'd rather check them first.

Hope your Sunday is going well. It's been a beautiful week, and tomorrow my husband and I are getting away fro the day to White Pines, and enjoy the fall colors, outdoors and a hike.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Up-dates by Sabrina

Moon will be full--I guess tonight. I notice things like that. There's a reason for it. Believe me (you'll find out if you read this next book).

Hi. This is Sabrina Strong in for Lorelei today. Just have a few things to impart.

First of all, the cover of the second book looks--absolutely evil. Like I've been up to something bad. That's all I'm going to say for now. It wasn't ready to share as yet. Lorelei gave her okay to her publisher, and I guess they'll go from there.

Another bit of business is Lorelei has a host post over on Katie Salidas' blog, Written In Blood, today. The piece is called "Why Vampires", and it seems to answer it really well, and goes beyond the fiction characters we all know, and delves a little deeper into the human kind of vampires. You'll not want to miss that.

I, meanwhile, am waiting patently for an electrician to come and make a hook up for a new electric oven. Apparently this guy is rather busy. I've been waiting on him for weeks. If he doesn't show, I'll fire him. Or, maybe I'll send one of my "friends" to visit him? Nah. Then I might get the reputation of being a nasty bitch. Actually, being the nasty bitch gets things done. You know what I mean?

I've also picked up a nice little book to read. It's called "Light Beneath Ferns" by Anne Spollen. I think it's a ghost story about a little girl who meets one. Sounds really good. Here is the cover.
Lorelei is telling me that she wants to read it after me, so I'd better have it done. She's about to be finished reading Black Magic Sanction by Kim Harrison. I'm thinking she'll post a review on this as soon as she can.

I'm glad that the full moon is coming up and will be done with well before Halloween. I hate the very thought of what might happen when us creatures of the moon commune and cavort on Halloween when children are about. Hmmm. Sounds like that would make a great story!

Well, I've got some things to take care of before . . . you know . . . tonight.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish ~ Dedication to Steve Jobs

Hunks Thursday has been postponed for an Icon.


I've heard the news, just as all of you have that Steve Jobs has died. I didn't even know who he was in the 1980's when I bought my first computer--an Apple II. But he's darn famous now for all his inventions--things people can't seem to get through a day--or a minute of a day--without.

My husband and I listened to a speech he made to a graduating class and I'm glad I was able to hear it in its entirety. Everything he said was thought provoking and inspiring.

His final words were "Stay hungry, stay foolish", after telling everyone to never "settle" and find the thing you are in love with (This also goes for the person you fall in love with), and don't settle for less. Go after it and make it yours.

As a writer who is, and has been in love, with writing since my senior year in high school (1972), I had followed this advice before I'd heard it. I guess I had always stepped to my own drummer. When I exclaimed excitedly that I intended to become an author, my English teacher told me to not pursue a writing career because of my terrible spelling and grammar.

I, of course, didn't listen. Instead I went after something that was probably so impossible that it did keep me hungry. And I was foolish. "You can't possibly find a publisher who would want your book! Look at how many books are out there!" That was from my ex-husband. Obviously I had settled, but that was then, this is now. I didn't listen to him either.

It took me a while, but I am now published.

I've always admired people who could find something around that corner that the rest of us couldn't see. Jobs was that person. Trying to think outside the box, doing something crazy--things that make people think you are crazy, and then when they see what you've accomplished they turn around and say "He was a genius." Yeah. That is crazy. That's what makes an icon. That and what he/she has accomplished beyond the wildest dreams.

So, if you are a struggling writer take this advice: Stay hungry, stay foolish, despite what people will think of you, or say. You have a love for writing. Hold it. Let that be your focus. Take it with you throughout the day. Walk the walk, talk the talk. Eat, sleep, and dream of your writing. Because no one else will care enough but you.

Stay hungry, stay foolish.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Wicked Wednesday ~ Not So Wicked

Hello, my pretties. I am enjoying the fall colors just now coming on around us. We are lucky in having some very nice, comfortable temperatures and dry days stringing many along. My husband and I hope to get away to a nearby state park and take in some of the great fall colors there.

It's the time of year that has always been my favorite. I'd always looked forward the Halloween, and so certainly it gets me excited. The first morning when I smell autumn in the air, I know that the time is right. Decorations around the house is up. My only lament is that because we live so far out we don't get trick-or-treaters. But that's alright. I hope to go to one of the festivals going on around us. One goes on the weekend of Halloween, and I can't wait for that. Lot's of people will enter their pumpkins all dressed, carved and so forth and will be on display at the court house lawn. The usual hot apple cider, coffee etc. with brats, ribs, pork chops and so on from the food vendors along the streets. It's always fun to go to.

What do you do around this time of year to ring in the Halloween season? Have you carved a pumpkin yet? Decorations?

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

TEASER TUESDAY ~ Another clip from Vampire's Trill

It's Tuesday again, my pretties and here is another blurb from my next novel, Vampire's Trill. I know you are all wondering if Nicolas and Sabrina are going to get along in this one. Maybe. Maybe not.

"Will Ms. Strong be joining you later this evening for . . . dinner?" Nathanial asked Nicolas. I couldn't help but catch his pause in groping for the correct word.

"No. She will not," Nicolas said with a trace of scorn in his voice. It was as though the very thought was abhorrent, and the way he looked at me was as though he'd wanted to make sure that I knew it. Well, big whoopee do-da.

Guess not.

Have a great Tuesday, my pretties!

Monday, October 3, 2011


Today I'd like to get you all pumped up on Decorations for Halloween! I've found a few good ones. For those of you who have a mote or a lake you might like this one: An inflatable pirate ship only $229.

But there are other less expensive decorations like these:
Walmart Witch with misting caldron

Escape from the Grave Zombie $49.99

Pre-lit spooky Willow Trees: $149/5 ft. tree - $89/3.5 ft. tree
I hope this has you excited about decorating. I'll have more in the coming weeks for sure!

Before I leave you, here are some inspirational websites to visit to charge you up for Halloween:
A Nostalgic Halloween
The Pumpkin Hollow (etsy shop! Very cute stuff!)

And before I leave you I'd like to invite you all to check out Katie Salidas' blog which is celebrating "Vampire Awareness Month" I will be on her blog as a guest host on the 8th, but she starts it up today. So go visit her!

Have a Dreaded Monday!

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