Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Last Chance To Vote For The Gemmell Legend Award Shortlist!

US Cover
On 1 July I shared exciting news having The Gathering of the Lost, the second novel in The Wall Of Night series  longlisted for the international  Gemmell Legend Award. The award is given for a novel, published in the preceding calendar year, in the epic, heroic, or high Fantasy genre.

The current round of voting is to decide the shortlist and voting closes today, Wednesday 31 July at midnight, UK time (that's 7 pm, US eastern Standard Time.)  
The Gathering Of The Lost is also the only Supernatural Underground novel on the list  so if you have not already voted I'd love your support to get Gathering through to the next round!

UK cover
And voting is easy!

1. Click on the following link:

2. Click again in the circle above the author and book title you want to support, e.g. “Helen Lowe – The Gathering Of The Lost”

3. Scroll to the bottom & click on “Vote”

Done—and thank you!

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Touchstones: What Your Supernatural Underground Authors "Just Can't Do Without" When We're Writing!

Throughout July our Supernatural Underground authors have been updating you on what's happening and what's hot in our writing lives right now.

And wow, wasn't it exciting just to find out just how much is hubbling and bubbling behind the scenes!

In amongst the other August happenings, we thought it might be fun to talk about some of our writing "touchstones" — those artifacts, or processes, accompaniments or spaces we "just can't do without" when the muse is driving us to write, write, write...

So watch this space as August rolls around — I think we're going to have some Supernatural Underground posting fun!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

The Three of Me

$50 Amazon or B&N gift certificate Giveaway!

Lately I've been more than torn in half, I've been torn in three parts. I write under three names, each with her own type of work and her own reading audience, with some overlap. When I go to sign a book or even a personal check, I really have to think about who I am! I'm in various degrees of denial when asked, "But aren't you really so-and-so?" Time to reveal the three of me, and what "they" have all been doing.

Time of Death by Shirley Kennett
1. Shirley Kennett (my real name) wrote the PJ Gray series of thrillers about a female psychologist who uses virtual reality to recreate homicide scenes. The whole series has been given new life as ebooks (Open Road Media) and audiobooks (Audible). One of the ebooks, Time of Death, is on sale for $1.99 on Amazon and elsewhere until July 31st. It's been exciting seeing this book climb in the top 100 ebooks of Crime Fiction. I'm hearing from PJ Gray fans, old and new, who are thrilled to have these new formats available to enjoy the books.

There's a $50 Amazon or B&N gift certificate up for grabs. Last day to enter is July 31st.

Bloodletting by Dakota Banks2. Dakota Banks writes the Mortal Path series of urban fantasies about Maliha Crayne, a 300-year-old former demon's assassin now working to preserve life instead of taking it. She needs to balance the scales carved on her body by the Sumerian demon she served - save as many lives as she's taken at his direction - to redeem her soul. My publisher wanted to take this series ebook only, and though I loved Maliha, I wasn't thrilled about the idea or the terms. Since then, I've gotten so much feedback from readers and requests for more Mortal Path, I just can't leave this series without wrapping it up. So Dakota is becoming an indie author and will self-publish Mortal Path #4, Bloodletting. No projected release date yet. My third part is kinda busy (see below). The ebooks of the first three in the series are on sale for $4.74 each at Amazon, $14.22 for all three.

Approved or Rejected3. DB Ayers is my latest split personality, and hopefully my last! I've been keeping this connection a secret, but you won't tell, will you? As DB, I'm launching a YA science fiction trilogy, Aftermath, set in the future on a human colony planet. Silva was once green with plentiful water, but a brush with a wandering planet nudged it into an orbit closer to its sun. Now it's a desert-like environment where a lucky few live in cool, safe domes. Sixteen-year-old Anna Hart flees a deadly situation. Using her skills with an ancient weapon and her empathic ability, she struggles through danger and betrayal, searching for a place where love and hope can thrive. Aftermath is tremendously exciting to me. The proposal's being reviewed by 10 top NY editors and 2 Hollywood producers. I'm going crazy waiting to hear something!

Have you had times in your life when you've had to function as more than one "person"? Maybe not with different names, but with different roles? Tell me about it! Leave a comment below.

Hugs ♥,

Thursday, July 25, 2013

The Dougal Countdown Begins!

Congratulations to Margie of Texas for winning this month's contest! Please come back August 25th for my next post and contest! And many thanks to all you who left a comment!

First, before I get started on Dougal, I'd like to thank the readers who came to see me in Atlanta at the giant booksigning. I'm posting a few photos here. I'd also like to thank those who took a small vacation from the Vamps and followed me into the American Revolution. Less than a Gentleman is getting great reviews! Thank you so much!  The print edition will release August 6th. If you want a print copy, you'll need to order it online or contact Katy Budget Books, where I can sign one to you personally. The contact info for KBB is on the historical page of my website,

Now on to Dougal!  That's Dougal Kincaid, the sexy Scottish vampire in a kilt who will star in the next Love at Stake book, The Vampire with the Dragon Tattoo. It releases August 27th! The excerpt will be up soon on my website. If you haven't entered the contest there, what are you waiting for?  Ten winners in August will receive a signed copy of Wild About You, plus a signed coverflat of The Vampire with the Dragon Tattoo. Also in August, Dougal will make a personal appearance on the I Smell Sheep blog.  On August 13th, don't miss the debut of the Red Carpet Premiere Video for Dougal's book. Most of his friends will walk the red carpet, and of course, Dougal and his heroine will be the honored guests!  The video will debut on the USA Today Happy Ever After blog. I'll be posting links to the video and Dougal's interview, so keep an eye on my Facebook pages, Twitter, and newsletter posts. The launch party for The Vampire with the Dragon Tattoo will take place on August 27th at Katy Budget Books. Contact them if you'd like me to sign a copy for you.

Now for today's contest!  I'll be giving away a print copy of the anthology Vampires Gone Wild, plus another book, Vampire Mine!  Why? Because Vampire Mine stars Connor, who just happens to be the Vamp who transformed Dougal after the Battle of Culloden. You'll get to see what good friends they are in The Vampire with the Dragon Tattoo.  Just leave a comment to be entered in the contest. International entries are welcomed. Good luck!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Spaceships and magic - What's new with Nicole Murphy

Congrats Sandy - you've won a copy of Secret Ones! Email nicole at nicolermurphy dot com with your address so I can send it to you.

Hi everyone!

It's been an incredibly busy time for me since I last posted (all the way back in March! Sorry, I will do better).

I was the co-chair of this year's Australian National Science Fiction Convention. I started a brand new project, developing a professional development day for writers. I took over running the 2014 Aurealis Awards (Australia's premier awards for science fiction/fantasy/horror).

There's been some success on the writing front too.

Firstly, my short story 'The Black Star Killer' was selected for inclusion in the Australian Year's Best Fantasy and Horror for 2012. This story is set in the 1920s but is also part of the gadda universe of my novels, so I'm really excited about it. The story first appeared in 'Damnation and Dames' and it's my first ever story to make a year's best collection. Honestly, I'm sure whereever you were in the world that day, you heard my squee of glee!

Also, I sold my second contemporary romance. The Lies We Tell is the story of Sia and Todd, who were driven apart ten years ago by lies. Circumstances have drawn them back together and as the lies start to unravel, whole families are put at risk. It will be released on August 1 - eep!

Right now, I'm returning to my spec fic roots, and also to my storytelling roots. I'm revising my science fiction romance - which needs a title, dammit! - in order to get it read before final polishing for submission. The thing is - I first developed this world, and my heroine Cassandra, when I was 14. Nearly 30 years I've been working on this, and I finally think it's nearly there!

Maybe I should call it 'About Time' :)

I hate coming up with titles - I suck at them. Some people are brilliant. Sometimes, you get stories you want to read just for the titles. For example, the titles of fellow Supernatural Undergrounder Kerrelyn Sparks. They are great!

What's your favourite book title? Let me know, and go in the draw to win a copy of 'Secret Ones', my first gadda novel. Winner will be drawn next Saturday.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Syked! What's New for Kim Falconer

Girl Warrior by Shurjo
Thank you everyone for jumping in with your comments and posts! The WINNER of the draw is Michelle! Congratulations and please email me (enchantment AT kimfalconer DOT com) your postal address so I can pop your book in the mail (if you want a different book in the series, that's fine too). Let me know! xKim

I'm amped sky high! So excited about a new series I'm writing. SYKED, you might say, and that isn't because the main character's name is Ava Sykes. This is all pure and natural adrenaline coursing through my bloodstream, keeping me up late at night and launching me out of bed at dawn. What a kick! This is the kind of thing that happens when a story takes hold, and won't let go. Who needs coffee? I'm already out of this freaking world, over the moon!

I'm not supposed to say much. Right, like that's going to happen. Here is the blurb for book one, and my working titles.

Series Title: Eyes of a Demon  (Ava Sykes Novel)

Book #1 The Blood in the Beginning
Book #2 The Saint in the Sacrifice
Book #3 The Savior in the Sea

When a girl with unexplained powers uncovers her past, she falls head first into a world darker than any imagined.  

* * *

Book #1 The Blood in the Beginning (Ava Sykes Novel)

Some things are better left buried . . .

When a tall man dressed in Armani, smelling of cologne and faintly of blood, tells Ava Sykes, twenty-four, student by day, bouncer by night, they’re hiring at a new club, she’s glad for the tip. The job looks promising, until the place turns into an underworld so dark it’s all she can do to keep from screaming. Ava runs like hell, killing the muscle they send to stop her. But when his body disappears before her eyes, Ava’s sure she’s losing her mind. The stalkers don't give up, and she finds herself in the hospital, under the care of Dr Miguel Rossi, a man who reveals her origins - Ava Sykes is the half-blood child of a Shen Mar, the vampiric race entombed beneath the sea. Shocked to the core, Ava searches for her birth mother, and the truth, but time’s running out.

The police want to arrest her, the Shen want to kill her and Miguel wants to awaken her powers. Ava used to dream of knowing where she came from; now she’d give anything to forget . . .

* * *

To celebrate this new vision, I'm giving away a signed copy of The Spell of Rosette, for all you science fantasy lovers out there.

Just pop in a comment about the last thing that had you SYKED and your name will go in the hat.

Tweet and FB comments get double the chance, so let me know if you do that too! This is worldwide, so don't hold back!

Kim Falconer is a Supernatural Underground author writing paranormal romance, urban fantasy, YA and epic science fantasy novels. She also co-directs Good Vibe Astrology, an astrology and law of attraction school.

You can find out more about Kim at or on the 11th House Blog. She posts here at the Supernatural Underground on the 16th of every month. Her latest release is Supernatural Underground: Vampires Gone Wild.   

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Revisiting Old Friends: What's New with Terri Garey

***The winner of a signed set of FOUR books in the Nicki Styx series is R BUTLER!! Please send an email containing your mailing address to, and your books will be in the mail!***

When I become emotionally attached to someone, I often have a hard time letting them go, which is also true of my characters. This is why, after a hiatus of three years, what I'm up to these days is revisiting the character of Nicki Styx, who made her debut in my RITA award winning novel, DEAD GIRLS ARE EASY.  Nicki's adventures with the dearly (and not-so-dearly) departed went on to fill four more books and a novella before I moved on to other projects, but Nicki (much like the spirits who plague her), simply refused to die.  True to form, she demanded her OWN happily after ever, which I may or may not give her -- the story isn't finished yet -- but HAPPILY NEVER AFTER is my current project. 

In my spare time, I'm also working on the third and final book in the DEVIL'S BARGAIN series, which will be the one where the devilishly handsome Sammy Divine finally gets what he deserves, and revisiting a couple of historical novels that I wrote a few years back involving Roman warriors, ancient Druids and the Egyptian cult of Isis.  (Say what???)  :)  Oh, and then there's a Victorian mystery involving mesmerism and spiritualism that keeps calling my name... I hope to get to that one sometime next year.  If you'd like to find out more about any of these books, including the release dates, you should probably sign up for my newsletter, which is also a great way to win free books, cool t-shirts and all around awesome writerly swag (I love holding contests!).  And look, you can even sign up via text message!  Isn't modern technology wonderful?  :)

In other news regarding revisiting old friends, tomorrow I shall head off to Atlanta, GA for the 2013 Romance Writers of America conference.  Once there, I'll attend workshops, parties, laugh, eat, and laugh some more, as I see some of my dearest writing pals, many of whom I only get to see once a year.  Here I am with two of my best buds, Harlequin Medical author Janice Lynn and Harlequin Superromance author Anna Sugden.  We met online over ten years ago when we were all still unpublished, and have hung together ever since.  I can't wait to see them again!

So, in honor of old friends like Nicki, Anna and Janice, I'm offering a giveway today of ALL FOUR books in the Nicki Styx series:  DEAD GIRLS ARE EASY, A MATCH MADE IN HELL, YOU'RE THE ONE THAT I HAUNT, and SILENT NIGHT, HAUNTED NIGHT.

All you have to do is tell me the name of YOUR oldest friend, and you're entered!  A winner will be chosen on Thursday, July 18th.  Good luck, and here's to good friends!

Friday, July 12, 2013

Shifters and Vampires and Shadows, oh my! Or...What's New with Pamela Palmer

Contest winner: Congrats to Jerri Mooring! 

I'm finally settling down after a whirlwind spring filled with a book deadline, a book release, and three fabulous reader conventions, one of which was in Europe. Whew! It's time to stay put for awhile and write.

The book that just came out: A Kiss of Blood. This is the second book in my new Vamp City series and it released June 25th to great reviews. This one reveals a slightly gentler side of Washington, V.C. (Vamp City). Perhaps a 'slightly less dark side' would be more accurate. You'll also see another side of Arturo Mazza, the vampire hero/anti-hero of book 1. In her review, Jeaniene Frost says, "If Palmer would’ve told me before I read A Kiss Of Blood, “You’ll like Arturo by the end of this,” I would have bet her my car that she was wrong. For the record, if I would’ve made that bet, I’d owe Pamela Palmer a Jeep Cherokee. I heartily recommend A Kiss Of Blood."

The book deadline that had me scrambling this spring was for the eighth and final book in my Feral Warriors series, Wulfe Untamed. Finally, Wulfe is going to get his story, and it's a rip-roaring ride of a tale that concludes the Daemon Blade story arc. I fully intend to write more Feral Warriors stories in the future--I adore my guys, and both Vhyper and Grizz are going to come after me if I don't--but this current story is coming to an end.

Now I'm back to writing and I'm working on two stories simultaneously, with a third trying to catch my eye from the shadows. The first is another Vamp City novella, my second from this world. This one, a romance centering around new characters, will actually be a prequel to the main story. This will be my first foray into self-publishing, a venture I've been wanting to try.

I'm also looking over my notes and re-reading the first two books in the Vamp City series in preparation for diving into book 3 the moment the novella's complete. The main VC story, Quinn's and Arturo's, is going to take four to five books to tell. I think! I know where we're going but, as usual, I'm not entirely sure how many words it will take me to take to get there.

And the story hovering in the shadows? You'll have to wait a bit to hear more about that one because even I'm not entirely sure what's there. I'm pretty sure it's going to be a departure from what I've been writing, but how much of one is yet to be seen.

That's what's up with me!

I've got a signed copy of A Love Untamed to give away. For a chance to win, just leave a comment. If you can't think of anything to write, tell me what you're reading right now. And if you would, leave your email address so I can contact you if you win. I'll choose the winner on Wednesday, July 17th.

Enjoy the rest of your summer!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

"The Gathering Of The Lost" Giveaway: We Have A Winner!

US cover
My apologies for going down to the wire on "Tuesday 9" in getting this to you—but the "Sorting Hat", aka Random.Org, has now spoken and we do have a winner for the The Gathering Of The Lost that was up to grabs in my July 1 post.

And the winner is [drum roll!]: 
Melissa (Books and Things)

Congratulations, Melissa!

If you could email me via contact[at]helenlowe[dot]info, to confirm your details and that it is the UK cover you want, that would be very much appreciated.:)

UK/AU/NZ cover
And thank you so much to everyone else who commented and sent lots of love and support The Gathering Of The Lost's way for the Gemmell Legend Award voting—you are all awesome!

And by way of a thank you, here's a snippet from GATHERING that I thought you might enjoy:

"...She could tell by the way he spoke that the last words must be part of the rite. Her fingers freed another braid, unraveling its full length as he had unbound her queue. She had loosened enough of the braids now that his hair was a fall of silk, heavy down his back. Malian smiled, thinking how it would sway as he moved, following the line of his spine—and swing around them both, shutting out the world, as their bodies came together. He was smiling, too, as she leaned forward and kissed the hollow of his throat.

“Malian of Night,” he said again, in the tone that was dark as wild honey.
She lifted her head and kissed him on the lips, silencing speech as his eyes met hers and body answered body, sinking to the grass. And far off in the shadowed woods the nightingale was singing again, sweet and sad beneath the twin moons, blue and twilit green, of Imuln’s blessed isle."

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Soggy Summer: What's New with Jocelynn Drake

**CONTEST WINNER: The winner for the ebook giveaway is STEPHANIE FREDRICK. Stephanie please email me at JocelynnDOTdrakeATgmailDOMcom and tell me which of my books you'd like and in which format (Kindle or Nook)**

Summer is not quite working out how I anticipated.  Last summer in the wilds of Kentucky, we were baking daily at 100 degrees.  The grass was scorched and the A/C was constantly humming away, drowning out any of the birds that were insane enough to open their mouths and risk bursting into flames.  (I'm serious. Spontaneous combustion was a problem last summer.)

Of course, winter wasn't exactly awesome this year as I moved farther north to the icy wonderland of Wisconsin.  Let me say, I've seen my fill of snow.  Yep, I saw more snow fall last winter than all my years in Kentucky combined.  If you'd like a quick overview of our first Wisconsin Winter, check out the video below.

The plus side of being buried under a mountain of snow is that I managed to get a lot of writing done. Yay!  Yes, I finished a novella  and a novel and I've got several other novels started.  After several years of writing urban fantasy, I decided to take a little break to cleanse the palate.  As a result, I finished a historical romance novella and a novel.  But don't worry, I've got more urban fantasy, paranormal romance, and fantasy that I'm working on.

But now summer is here.  I've returned to Kentucky for a visit with my family.  I was looking forward to some sun and family and lots of writing time.  Well, I got the family part right.  Kentucky has been abandoned by the sun in favor of torrential downpours and the words... well, the words just haven't been coming. (I guess I should take my own advice and relax a bit.)

However, I have noticed that the words are coming back following the explosions.  The Fourth of July brought some wonderful explosions despite the rain.  My family is big in fireworks and we've come up with an interesting way of dealing with the little bottle rockets.  Here is a quick video of the infamous "Box" by the Drakes from 2010.  I'm still working on this year's video. 

And now that the fireworks have exploded around the city, I am back to typing away on stories.  I've got two more urban fantasy novels that I'm playing with and something really.... strange is brewing in the back of my head. (Don't worry.  It'll hit the page very soon!)  After I finish writing it all, I've just got to find a home for everything.

To celebrate the Fourth of July, let's have a contest!  I will give away one of my books on the Kindle or Nook.  Just leave me a comment below telling me what you love about the summer.  The contest ends at midnight on Thursday, July 11. I will announce the winner on Friday, July 12. You can win any one of my books from the Dark Days series or Asylum Tales.

But now... it's time to get back to writing.  Those warlocks can't rule the world without me.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Inspired by Evil: What's new with Amanda Arista

Thanks for the comments, ladies. Its good to know that I'm not the only one who likes to tread on the dark side. June M is the winner of the giveaway. See you next month!!

           So heres what going on with me. Writing. Writing. Writing. My muse is on some sort of crack that is illegal in most states and my brain is going in a million directions at once. But there is something about working on three projects at a time that seems to be getting me back into the swing of things. Im plotting faster, the dialogue is sharper, and my characters are flying onto the page.

            The Villains seems to be extra sharp for these projects as well. I have to admit. Im pro-villain. My favorite characters in literature seem to the antagonists, because they usually get the best lines. Good villains are strong, driven, have their own moral codes and usually more motivated than the heroes at the beginning of the stories. They are on their own journeys and, frankly, sometimes Im routing for them because the heroes just cant seem to get their acts together faster enough.

            So some of my favorites are:

1. Maleficent. Probably the first villain to really institute the adage If you want something done right, you have to do it yourself. Powerful woman and sexy as hell. She is the reigning queen of villains in my book, because she almost got exactly what she wanted. In the end, remember, she was just out-manned, not out smarted (those three meddling fairies). Really looking forward to Angelina Jolies portrayal of her next summer.

2. Hannibal Lector- I dont know if you guys have been watching NBCs Hannibal, but there is something both eerie and alluring about Mads Mikkelsens portrayal of the psychiatrist. You know that hes eating people, but somehow, youre a little okay with that because you just want to know what hes going to say next.  
3. The Nothing from The Neverending Story by Michael Ende. Though the Nothing is really a phenomenon that is happening to Fantastica, is still was a powerful source of fear for the main characters, Atreyu and Bastian. And it was creepy, because there was no getting away from it and it drove creatures insane by just looking into it. And, it had the best emissary in the world!

4. Tyler Durden from Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk. Now, technically I dont know if you can count Tyler Durden as a villain, but I was routing for Project Mayhem the entire time. And I tote a lot of Tyler-isms in my life. There was a surprising amount of truth spoken by that character and yet, he is still the antagonistic force for the narrator.

5. The Joker, all his incarnations ever. Probably the best villain and hero relationship that has ever hit the page or the screen. The perfect juxtaposition of Jokers love of chaos and Batmans need for logic defines how heroes and villains are supposed to work together, their harmony are what make the stories good and tension-filled and keep us watching and turning the page.

There are so many more, other villains who were just fun to watch, like Miranda Priestly from Devil Wears Prada as well as others who will stay with me forever, like Lady Catherine de Bourgh from Pride and Prejudice.

For me, a good villain is the root of a good story. Do you some times route for the bad guys?  Im giving away a signed edition of the Supernatural Undergrounds Vampires Gone Wild to a random commenter who can tell me who their favorite baddie is and why. 

Amanda Arista
Author, Diaries of an Urban Panther Series