Magic Breaks Blog Tour – Day 1/2

The Magic Breaks Blog Tour starts today, and every day I’ll be posting the details. For everyone who gets to attend: HAVE FUN!

 

Today, Tuesday, July 29th, Ilona & Gordon will be signing at Murder by the Book (2342 Bissonnet St. Houston, TX 77005) at 6:30 pm.

The fan pre-event will be starting at 5 P.M at Under the Volcano

  • 2349 Bissonnet St. Houston, TX77005

 

Wednesday, July 30th they will be in Seattle, WA. Their signing will start at 7:00 pm at the University Book Store (4326 University Way NE Seattle, WA 98105).

The fan pre-event will be starting at 5:30 P.M. at Cafe Solstice

  • 4116 University Way NE
    Seattle, WA98105

    b/t 42nd St & 41st St in University District

 

 

 

 

 

 

Meet and Greets and the Tour

While we were at RWA, our oldest got a tattoo.  It is something meaningful to her, a Bible verse, and it is very tasteful, but my initial reaction was like this.

So, I shudder to think what will happen while we’re on tour.

We will make the signing.  We may NOT always make the meet and greets.  If our plane is delayed, if the traffic is heavy, etc, we may not be there.  You are going there on your own risk. Sorry.  :(

If you want to take pictures, hang out, and chat, Meet and Greet meetings are the perfect place.  If you read the book already, you can ask spoilery questions, etc.  We will NOT be signing books at the Meet and Greets.  This is to ensure that our preliminary meetings do not compete with the signings.  We are trying to support the book stores.

If you have special needs, please let the book store staff know.  For example, last year we had one lady with a walker who insisted on standing in line for an hour.  We would prefer that you did not suffer on our account.

While we are gone, Nicole will post and tweet the location of each signing and meet and greet as a reminder.  :)

 

Image stolen from Bookpushers

Image stolen from Bookpushers

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Houston

Signing: 6:30 pm

MURDER BY THE BOOK

2342 Bissonnet St.

Houston, TX 77005

Meet and Greet: 5:00 pm

Under The Volcano, Houston.

It’s a casual place right across the street.  Murder by the Book isn’t really close to anything, so this is our best bet.

 

Wednesday, July 30 2014

Seattle

Signing: 7:00 pm

UNIVERSITY BOOK STORE

4326 University Way NE

Seattle, WA 98105

Meet and Greet: 5:30 pm

Cafe Solstice

4116 University Way NE

Seattle, WA 98105

Head South on University Way from the book store.

 

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Portland

Signing: 7:00 pm

POWELL’S

3415 SW Cedar Hills Blvd.

Beaverton, OR 97005

Meet and Greet: 5:30 pm

Panera Bread

3435 SW Cedar Hills Blvd
Beaverton, OR 97005

Same parking lot as Powells.

 

Friday, August 1, 2014

Edina

Signing: 7:00 pm

BARNES & NOBLE

3225 W. 69th Street

Edina, MN 55435

Meet and Greet: 5:30 pm

BN staff were incredibly accommodating and are going to hold a couple of tables for us at their cafe.  So Meet and Greet is right inside the BN at the coffee spot.

 

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Atlanta

Signing: 2:00 pm

FOXTALE BOOK SHOPPE
105 East Main Street
#138
Atlanta, GA 30188

Meet and Greet: 12:30 pm

The Copper Coin Coffee Shop

Copper Coin Coffee, 400 Chambers St,

Woodstock, GA 30188

 

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Austin

Signing: 3:00 pm

BARNES & NOBLE
10000 Research Blvd.
Austin, TX 78759

We do not have a Meet and Greet, but we will likely be in the book store for a while after the event.  So once the signing is over, you can walk with us to a small cafe and hang out.

Magic Breaks Comes Out Tomorrow

The wait is almost over.  MAGIC BREAKS is almost here.  It will officially hit the shelves tomorrow.

Magic-Breaks-smHere are some reviews in no particular order.  We are trying to include everything we see, but we probably missed a few.  If your review is missed, please email us using the business contact form on this site and your review will be forwarded to our publisher.  :D

Bookpushers – Joint Review

Smexy Books – Joint Review

Fantasy Book Critic – Joint Review

I’ve got a trend going here. Hang on, I think I saw one more somewhere…

Fiction Vixen – Joint Review

I think that’s it for the joint reviews.

Red Hot Books

The Qwillery

Reading and Writing Urban Fantasy

That’s What I’m Taking About

The Family Addiction

Vampire Book Club

To summarize: most people liked it, some people didn’t.  Some felt the conclusion was just right, some didn’t.  Some were happy that it was gut wrenching in a different way than MAGIC RISES, some wanted more relationship angst.

You just going to have to read it.

 

World of Kate Daniels

KD World

New site for all things Kate Daniels for your enjoyment. Enjoy Twitters, KD extras, Curran LOLz, etc.

KD-World

Audiobook of Magic Breaks

The audio book WILL BE AVAILABLE.  It’s at Recorded Books now and buy links should go up on Audible very soon, before release date.  Very soon is all I can tell you.  We had to go directly to the retailers and ask very nicely to fast-track it.  We owe people favors now.  :)

*Nicole here. Wanted to let everyone know that Magic Breaks is now available for pre-order at Audible.

Meet and Greets

We have gathered all of the information and we are waiting on confirmation from Ace’s publicist who arranged the tour.  If everything is confirmed, we will post dates, times, and locations here.  Nicole will also post the locations every day on the blog.

Very Kind Reviews of Magic Breaks

Yes, I have to.  It’s a prerelease week.  I warned you about promo. (Ps.  I love Nicole so much right now, I can’t even tell you.  I just had to look at the retweets on the pro account.)

Just Talking Books

Coffee and Characters

Smexy Books (Giveaway only right now.)

Under the Covers Book Blog + Giveaway

Heroes and Heartbreakers

La Crimson Femme

Larissa and Friends

Whedonopolis

Boom.  I am done.

Not Here

We have to go and attend business meetings and then we will start the tour.  We will be here very briefly Monday but mostly we will be gone until the 4th.  (On the 4th my father arrives to visit.  I haven’t seen him in 20 years.  He does not speak English.  This will be interesting.) Nicole is holding the fort in our stead. Be nice.

Magic Breaks UK E-edition Cover

Magic-Breaks-UKSeveral of you asked about UK edition of Magic Breaks.  There is no print version.  You have to order US edition from Book depository or Amazon.  The ebook version will be uploaded 24-48 hours after US release.

For Posterity

Okay, this will not last, so I am preserving this unexpected hilarity for posterity.  Drum rolls, please.

Amazon-#1-Autho

Click to enlarge

Hehehe!  I guess the giant sale was a smashing success.  :D

Beautiful Ashes- Excerpt

Remember how I claimed that Jeaniene Frost’s Beautiful Ashes cover was misleading? I coerced a snippet out of her, which she gave me with some reluctance, because it has some serious awesomeness in it.  Here you go.

PS. Jeaniene, don’t be mad at me.

demon-eyes

“What is that?”

Adrian’s voice startled me. For a second, I was disoriented, the dream clinging to me as it always did. Yes, I was in a car, but I wasn’t the unknown woman driving away from her baby. That wasn’t real. The glare Adrian leveled at my chest was, though.

“Is that a mirror?” He sounded horrified.

I looked down. My locket was open, the mirrored side facing me. At some point while I was sleeping, I must’ve opened it. Adrian’s hand shot out, but this time, I was too fast for him.

“Don’t you dare,” I snapped, holding it out of his reach. “It’s the only picture I have of my sister after you left everything I own back at that hotel in Bennington!”

He lunged again, actually letting go of the steering wheel to reach the side of the car where I held it. With a sharp yank, he wrested the locket from my hands. I tried to snatch it back, but he shoved me into my seat with one hand, finally grabbing the steering wheel with the other.

“Are you crazy?” I shrieked. “You could’ve gotten us killed!” If this hadn’t been a lonely stretch of desert road, our careening into the next lane might’ve had permanent consequences.

“You’re going to get yourself killed,” was his chilling response. Then, still pinning me to my chair with that single hand, he held my locket up.

I gasped. Something dark poked out of the small mirror, like a snake made of blackest smoke. It disappeared when Adrian smashed the mirror against the steering wheel, but an eerie wind whistled through the car, ruffling my hair and stinging my nostrils with its acrid scent.

Adrian muttered a word in that unknown language, and I didn’t need a translator to tell me it was a curse.

“What was that?” My voice was hoarse.

He threw me a pitying glance, which frightened me even more. If he wasn’t angry, we must really be screwed.

His next words proved that. “Brace yourself, Ivy. You’re about to meet a demon.”

[Read more...]

Link Salad!

All I want to do today is to sit here and write my book.  Most of the stuff I absolutely have to do today have nothing to do with writing. Oy.

***

Quote of the yesterday, from Magic Shifts:

“Can’t you just kill it with fire?” Mrs. Oswald asked.

I stuffed the tick’s legs into the large hazmat body bag. “Unfortunately, we can’t. That would be illegal. All magic hazmat has to be surrendered to Biohazard, so they can quarantine it.”

“What do you mean quarantine?” Mrs. Oswald asked.

“They’ll keep the corpse on ice for a few days to see if it tries to evolve into something else after death.”

“And then?” Mrs Oswald asked.

“Then they’ll kill it with fire,” I told her.

***

Ace asked very nicely if we would turn on the Ask the Author feature on Goodreads, which we did. (I have bookmarked the dashboard and I am heroically resisting looking at anything but dashboard.)  So here is a link to questions already answered.  You’re welcome to ask a question.  I promise to answer honestly.  Unfortunately, sometimes the answer will be “I don’t know.”

***

TBA-cover-2-195x300Jeaniene Frost is having an ARC giveaway for her new book, BEAUTIFUL ASHES.  This is not my book, and I have no relationship with Harlequin, so I am completely free to say this: the cover has nothing to do with the contents.  I’ve read the book.  The book is all kick-ass, and demonic evil, and coming of-age love story.  It has prehistoric lizard hounds in it. The cover is a random girl in the woods.  What? Come on, Harlequin.

***

BURN FOR ME has ran through the Amazon Vine program, so there are early reviews.  I found out this fact when I innocently went to Amazon for a buy link to NIGHT SHIFT.  Here is a link to early reviews.  Spoiler: people are surprised it’s not “porn.” (Why would it be porn?  O_o.)  It’s a slow burn, with instant chemistry, so there are a few hot scenes, but the relationship builds over the course of three books.  Because we write slow burn well and we like to torture you.  (Actually, it’s because I don’t like insta-love trope.)

***

Guys, please let me know if you’ve settled on meet and greet locations for the tour.  We are getting conflicting suggestions for Seattle and Portland. Here is the link to the list of tour locations.  Please feel free to use the comment section of this post to organize.

***

Book Talk Nation video chat in one week, on July 22nd.  Link here. If you can’t attend a signing but would like a signed book, you can order it there.

***

What am I forgetting?  Am I forgetting something?  If I am forgetting something, please tell me in the comments.

Oh My God, Oh My God

I’ve been trying not to stress out, because our book tour is coming up and my father is coming to visit after not seeing me for twenty years – at least I think he is.  So the pressure is leaking into my dreams.  Today I woke up after a really confusing dream, which I don’t really recall, except I was in a car at one point and the dream also had snakes in it.  Big scary cobra-sized poisonous snakes.  When I woke up, for a few seconds I wasn’t sure that reality was real.

So I am sitting up in bed, trying to fights of the tattered shreds of this dream, hoping there are no cobras under my bed,  and I hear, “Oh my God.  Oh my God!”

This is coming from my husband.  Gordon is pretty much as unflappable as you can get.  One time while in the Army he stepped on a nail.  It went all the way into his foot.  So he pulls two inches of nail out and he says, “Sonovabitch.”  “Oh my God!” is right off the scale for him in terms of reaction.

So I sit in my bed and my mind cycles through possibilities.  Something might be on fire.  Dogs redecorated the living room with diarrhea.  Someone killed a small woodland creature and brought us a corpse. Something vital broke. I’m sitting there and hoping against hope, “Please don’t let it be something bad.”

“We have to show this to your Mom.”

Please don’t let it be something bad with the kids.

The door swing open and Kid 2 runs in.  Kid 2, by the way, looks like this.  Here she is in a crochet top I made.  This is her latest hair color.  She’s done red, pink, purple, and finally settled on blue.

Kid2Except the person who runs into my bedroom doesn’t look like Kid 2.  She looks like this.

DSCN2973

Her head is completely white.  White.  I’m sitting there and for a split second I am convinced that either I’m seeing things, I’m still dreaming, or my kid has gone prematurely grey.

Apparently she decided to go back to a more natural color – even though the rest of us been suggesting it for months, she was adamant about bright colors – and she just stripped the color out herself.  Her make up wasn’t finished so you don’t get the whole portrait, but there you go.

First thing in the morning.

I’m ready to face the day.

I might have to buy her a small dragon to carry around.

The Danger of Replicating

New chapter of Sweep in Peace is available for your amusement.

Also, there is a very kind review of Magic Breaks.

I’ve read this quote in PC Gamer and it resonated with me. Alex Hutchinson, the creative director of Far Cry 4, was talking about the Far Cry franchise.  For those of you who are not familiar with the franchise, Far Cry is kind of difficult to classify.  It usually feature the leading character ending up in some remote, foreign location and being forced to survive.  For example, Far Cry 3 features a man who was supposed to have gone on a Micronesean vacation, but ended up on this island with native people, gun runners, drug dealers, and deadly animals.  At the core it’s a game about discovery.  The first two games int he franchise did okay, but the third was an enormous bestseller with over nine million copies sold.  Kid 2 loved it, which is why I’m aware of it.

Now the team has to make Far Cry 4 and instead of copying the same location and just making everything bigger and more scary, they are doing something new.

Sometimes, success is as dangerous as failure.  Once you finally hit one and you’re like, “that’s great, people really liked it, and it sold well,” there’s a tendency to change nothing.  Just repaint it, keep it the same. We’re not sure what it is, we’re not sure why it worked, and I think that’s by far the most dangerous route to take.  Even if you get away with it once, you won’t get away wit it twice, and you fail to learn, so you set bad practices in place.  people will start replicating things instead of creating things, so the effort to do more research, to go back and say these elements of the game work, these elements of the game didn’t work has been a lot of fun.

Alex Hutchinson

For me, this builds on the post by Karen Marie Moning.  Here is the link to the original post.

A small segue…when I stopped writing my HIGHLANDER romance novels and began working on the FEVER series, I encountered enormous obstacles. Change is a demanding bitch. Yet gratifying. I went from writing successful, stand-alone, third-person POV romance novels with happy-ever-after endings, to writing first-person POV urban fantasy novels with none (initially) of the hot-sex-and-guaranteed-culmination in each installment that I normally delivered. To further inflame the situation, I spread the story over five novels and gave them cliffhanger endings (ending DREAMFEVER on a figurative and literal cliff.) As if that wasn’t enough, I proceeded to take an average of 15 months to write each book, stringing the reader along. (Speaking of which—to those original Moning Maniacs who suffered through the wait for each installment, it was great fun and thank you! The SHADOWFEVER launch party was one of the more memorable weeks of my life, spending time with you in NOLA, answering long unanswered questions.)

When DARKFEVER was published, I lost readers, I lost ranking on the bestseller lists, I lost placement in bookstores, and I lost money. There it is. Bottom line. (The FEVER books have since drastically outsold my HIGHLANDER novels, it ended up being a very successful move at a time when historical romance novels were about to become a dying breed. I count my blessings I jumped when I did.)

I got sliced and diced by fans who told me in no uncertain terms that I didn’t have what it took to write anything but romance, that I needed to return to my roots, pull my head out of that un-sunshiney place I’d been foolish enough to cram it, and give up the writing the FEVER series.

Fiction writers, especially those who had experienced some modest amount of commercial success, are under a lot of pressure to treat writing as a business.  Bills must be paid, deadlines must be made, and sometimes publishing houses say things like “We don’t want to publish this, we want to publish this other thing you came up with, because it will make us more money.”  Often the writers acquiesce and end up working on something they don’t want to write. I’ve only experienced this once, with a novella, and both Gordon and I are determined to never do it again.

But back to the pressure. I’m a stubborn person.  I don’t generally let myself be pushed around, but I had to face the fact this relentless pressure to produce on demand cracked me like a walnut.  This wasn’t a pleasant revelation, but being cracked gave me a new perspective.  Yes, writing is a business, but it’s also my creative endeavor.  It’s my life.  Minutes of my time, my thoughts, my creation.  I don’t want to repaint the same car over and over.  I want to write new things.  I want to reinvent myself every few years.  I want to take risks, like writing a SF disguised as urban fantasy or putting out a paranormal romance that has no paranormal creatures in it.

Starting a new series may cost me ranking, money, and placement.  Hell, taking Kate Daniels in the new direction might do that.  But ultimately taking risks is what makes me happy.  Some may pan out, some may not, but at the end, I tried.  I took a chance.  And that really matters more to me, because it’s my life and I only get one try at it.