WELL. Do I have news for you, my darlings? I do, I do!

It’s official, I’m going to be writing a book for the Veil Knights series! It’s King Arthur meets urban fantasy, with bonus scavenger hunt. A bunch of really cool writers are banding together under the name Rowan Casey to bring you all sorts of delicious fun in a brand-new universe.

The bad news is, I can’t tell you which one I’m writing. I am Pinkie-Sworn to Secrecy, because there’s going to be a contest after Season 1 ends to see if people can match the book to the author. I’m sure my darling Readers, being the smartest around, will utterly smoke that competition, right?

To sweeten the deal, the first in the series, The Circle Gathers, is $.99 on Kindle right now.

Three years ago, Jessie “the Berserker” Noble was at the top of the MMA fight game, a world-title contender with a brilliant future ahead of her. Then the visions started and her world came crashing down. Hard. Now she’s a shadow of her former self, taking fights in the underground circuit to earn just enough to buy the drugs she needs to keep the horrible hallucinations at bay.

When a man named Dante Grimm tells her she’s the modern incarnation of a champion of old and that she and her soon-to-be companions are desperately needed to hold back the darkness to come, Jessie thinks he’s as insane as she is. But Grimm’s far from crazy. There is a battle coming the likes of which the world hasn’t seen in centuries, a battle against a foe straight out of their worst nightmares.

And for them to succeed, Jessie going to have to dive deep into the heart of the very thing she’s been running from all this time…

You’ll probably want to pick it up, so you can get a bead on the whole deal. It is Amazon-only, but the publishers are paying fairly and I get to work with a lot of people I like, so I jumped at the chance. I can’t wait to hear what you think!

Cold News

000zf6sq Hello again, dear Readers. It’s been a few days. I made it through the first gate of the holiday season only slightly singed. Now I can keep my head down and my breath held for the second gate. Once we pass the New Year I’ll be able to relax again.

It’s a crisp, chilly morning. Well below freezing, so Miss B, despite her angst at the thought, will probably stay home when I go for a run. The last thing we need is her paws shredded on ice.

Let’s see–news! I have news.

* I won/finished NaNo this year with The Marked. The zero draft of that book is now DONE, DONE, DONE.

* tinyBATMAN has a full-time nurse now. I swear I’ll tell you how that happened, but not today.

* Agent Gemini releases TOMORROW! If you liked Cal and Trinity from Agent Zero, you’re in for a treat. Now, if you want to read an exclusive excerpt, be sure to sign up for my New Releases newsletter before tomorrow–the sign-up box is on the right-hand side of the very page you’re reading now.

* Speaking of excerpts, my Patreon page has been revamped, and I’m offering more options. You can sign up for excerpts of The Marked, Steelflower’s Song, and the third Gallow & Ragged book, Wasteland King. You can also sign up to hear me read sections of my books. I’m going to be a lot more active in offering stuff over at Patreon–bits of works in progress, things you won’t see anywhere else, things you’ll see even before my editors do. I’ll probably start v-logging questions submitted through the Contact Form, as well.

Agent Gemini is out tomorrow, and Roadside Magic is out on January 26.

As for other news, well, the kids are marking time until winter break, I am shifting to revising Wasteland King and Rattlesnake Wind, in order to get both out the door before the New Year. I’m also blazing ahead on Steelflower’s Song. It will be good to write that book while it’s frosty outside, I think. And it’s also time for me to start working on Leva’s book–werewolves and genetic manipulation, oh my.

It feels good to be back in the saddle, even if my head is somewhat tender from pushing out The Marked. Which probably won’t sell to anyone, but I like the story, so there it is.

Time to get back to work.

Zombie Fanfic

Thank You You guys know how much I love Zombies, Run. I love the story, I love the characters, I love running accompanied by them. I have even developed a wee bit of a crush on Sam Yao. (Hey, a runner knows how much to value a good operator.)

So…I wrote some Zombies, Run fanfic.

I want to be very clear that I don’t own Six to Start‘s (or Naomi Alderman‘s) characters. Also, this is not endorsed by either of the above parties in any way. This is simply an homage to all the amazing work they put in on an app I use all the damn time. Often, when running with the characters, I think about who Five could be. This is one of the backstories I came up with, and I hope you like it. If you’re a runner (or a walker) with a smartphone, I highly recommend trying ZR out. I still, after a few years, enjoy the hell out of it.


Click this link to view/download a PDF of my Runner 5 story, Soldier.


In Battalions

So last night’s fall at the bouldering wall seems to have no lasting soreness. It was just one of those sessions where I was clumsy all the way through, always fun. I went up to grab a hold from an undercling, missed it, and tumbled. Fortunately I was relaxed when I hit, I landed on a well-cushioned part of my anatomy (seriously, you’d think I would have no ass left with as much as I run, but OH NO) and I rolled. I stretched out after the session, came home, drank a bunch of water, took ibuprofen, and went to bed smelling of homemade Tiger Balm. (My writing partner has many, many talents.) This morning…no soreness, barely even a bruise. Which is good, because I’m climbing again today (I promised) and dealing with copyedits, which means a lot of sitting on that tender, much-abused buttock.

I know, I know, you really wanted to read about that.

Let’s see, what’s the news? I have a story, Gallow’s Rescue, in the just-release Courts of the Fey. Like Eleni, Wolf, and Tarquin, Gallow and Robin have a much longer history, and I wish I could write their story. Trailer-park fey and epidemic disease, who wouldn’t want that?

Also, I’m over at John Mierau’s place talking about Frank Herbert’s Dune, the Litany, and how I wanted to be a Bene Gesserit. And the winners of the belated release day prizes are up!

Other than that, I’m hip-deep in copyedits for the first Bannon & Clare, and the water is rising fast. Plus I’ve got to update the Books page, and that sound you hear? It’s the gears inside my head gummed up by snot. That’s right, I’m coming down with a cold.

Not in single spies, but in battalions. By the way, if you have a good smartphone app that can alert one to changes in barometric pressure, let me know? I’m tired of the pressure changing and half my head wadding up like agonized tinfoil.

Anyway, I’m going to climb, fill myself to the brim with fluids and vitamin C, and fillet more of these copyedits until they are bled dry. The crankiness of physical misery might even add something.

Over and out…

Posted from A Fire of Reason. You can also comment there.

PSA, Plus Win A Copy of Angel Town!

First, the serious: Jim C. Hines on reporting sexual harassment in the SFF community. The comments also mention Gavin de Becker’s The Gift of Fear, which I also can’t recommend enough.

Then, the fun! Would you like to win a signed (in the US) or free (outside the US) copy of my just-released Angel Town? Or a copy of fellow Dame Keri Arthur’s Darkness Rising? Or would you, perchance, like a $15 Amazon gift certificate? Would you?

Well, you’re in luck! Just head over to the Deadline Dames’ latest Release Day Giveaway. All you have to do to get a chance to win is comment there. The Dames, we believe in making it easy to win.

We’re cool like that.

While you’re there, you can also find tons of other cool things, like the Readers on Deadline contests and helpful writing/publishing advice. And as soon as we figure out how to give out pie over the Internet, we’ll probably do that too.

Because we’re Dames. And Dames rock.

Posted from A Fire of Reason. You can also comment there.

The Best Fugue

There’s an interview with me and a giveaway over at My Bookish Ways; there’s also my Top Five Methods To Determine You’re A Zombie plus a giveaway of a one-of-a-kind Jill Kismet-inspired necklace over at CJ Redwine’s place. (The necklace, made by Tasha Falene especially for this giveaway, is so awesome, and it’s strictly a one-off. I wish I could enter to win it.) I think I’m going to be part of a Tor chat on Twitter sometime in the near future too, stay tuned for details.

In the category of Other Cool Internet Things, there’s Flavorwire’s How To Drink Like Your Favourite Authors and information about a stunning movie based on Diaghilev and Nijinksky. Which makes me wish I still had a VHS machine AND a copy of it. *sigh*

I spent pretty much all of yesterday in a fugue state, the story pouring out of my head and onto the screen. It’s weird to surface from a wholly different universe and find out that an hour has passed since you last shifted your weight of (seemingly) blinked. Of all the varied states of consciousness, that one has to be in my top five. It’s so bloody satisfying; it scratches some deep internal itch nothing else does.

Anyway, I am nervous and twitchy this morning. A good hard three-mile outside run with Miss B worked out some of the fidgets, but nothing will cure the rest but sinking into the story again. This is what I live for, really.

So it’s an espresso shooter followed by 500-Mile Chai (hell of a boilermaker, right?), my sword loose in its sheath and my eyes on the horizon.

Come on, story. Let’s tango.

Posted from A Fire of Reason. You can also comment there.

Were-Llama, WSJ’s Concern-Troll Fail, And See Me Climb

Too much to explain. Let me sum up.

* An interview with me, and a giveaway, over at CJ Redwine’s place. I am interviewed by a were-llama. Also, part 2 of the giveaway next week involves JEWELRY. Trust me, you want to be in on this.

* The Wall Street Journal went concern-trolling for pageviews again. Dame Jackie responds a lot more politely than I would have, Diane Duane hits it out of the park, the Guardian weighs in, and #YASaves hits trending. I thought of posting my own response to WSJ’s pearl-clutching idiocy, but in the end Jackie and Diane did it better than I ever could, and I don’t want to link and feed the troll more pageviews. So there it is.

* Kristen Lamb on training to be a career writer:

Athletes who compete in decathlons use a lot of different skills—speed, endurance, strength. They walk this fine balance of giving an event their all….without really giving it their all. They still must have energy left to effectively compete in the other events and outpace the competition.

We writers must learn to give it our all….without giving it our all. The better we get at balancing our duties, the more successful we will be in the long-run. Writers who fail to appreciate all this job entails won’t be around in a year or three. They are like a runner who sprints at the beginning of a marathon. They will fall by the side of the road, injured and broken.

So today when you have to squeeze in that 100 words on your break from work, think I’m training. When your kids hang off you as you write, picture that weighted sled. Play the soundtrack to Rocky if you must. (Kristen Lamb)

* Want to see me climb? We’re recording ourselves on routes so we can nitpick our performance. (By “we” I mean “me and ZenEllen, my bouldering partner.”) Here’s some from today: an inglorious failure at a bouldering route, then a second attempt where I stick the damn thing. I’ve been working this route for a few weeks now. You can also see some of my tats, and the Official Belt Of Urban Fantasy. (Long story. I had to buy one, after that.)

And now I’ve got to spend the first half of my writing day in alternate-Renaissance fantasy France, and the second half in contemporary paranormal YA. The braincramps are fun to watch–my face squinches up when I shift gears and go from one to the other. Good times, man. Good times.

Posted from A Fire of Reason. You can also comment there.