A Sweet Deal

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Cover Wars!

Stolen from the Cover Wars site

Shades of Gray is competing in the Cover Wars! Check it out, and drop a vote for your favorite covers!

Fellow author? You can sign up for the next round while you’re there!

Jorick is Hanging out Somewhere New!

Image may contain: 1 person, text that says 'AMARANTHINE JOLEENE NAYLOR The past casts long shadows, even inthe dark... AMARANTHINE THE COMPLETE SAGA By Joleene Naylor'

It’s not just Jorick hanging out somewhere new, but the whole crew. You might remember I signed the distribution agreement last year to serialize the series? Well, thanks to covid its release was late, but at last it’s starting to show up.

Right now, you can find the whole Amaranthine series on the AnyStory App as Amaranthine. Sadly, it’s an app only site, so I can’t link directly to the book, but if you’re any AnyStory user, please think about dropping a rating or review/comment.

Not into AnyStory? No worries, Webnovel has got your back! You can find the whole series under the Amaranthine title, as well as Brothers of Darkness, Vampire Morsels, and Tales from the Executioners. Again, if you’re a Webnovel user, please check them out and consider leaving a review or a vote, or whatever. (I’m not entirely sure what the whole power stone thing is)

So just to rehash:

Amaranthine is now on the AnyStory App

Amaranthine books are also on Webnovel:

Thanks so much, everyone, and hope to see you there!

The Writer’s Room (I.O.W.A) Virtual Event

I’ve mentioned for the last two days that there’s an author event coming…Well, wait for details no longer, because here they are, courtesy of their website:

I.O.W.A. 2020 will be held on the full days of November 7th and 8th from 10am-5pm on both days with pre-events at 12pm November 2nd-6th featuring local bookstores. Due to Covid-19, this will be a virtual author event on Facebook that will promote live author readings, panels, and additional programming with authors and the library. The event is free for attendees.


Each of the participating authors get a fifteen minute video stream, including yours truly, where I read a little bit of Shades of Gray (I took a vote, and that’s what y’all picked!) as well as talk a bit…yeah, I just made that sound pretty boring, but I know the other authors segments – and the panels – are gonna rock! I’ll let them give you the details:

The Writers’ Rooms (I.O.W.A.) Virtual Author Event will feature indie and local authors who will introduce themselves and their books to viewers in 15 minute videos! Books! Prizes! Authors! What more could you ask for? Maybe you’ll even meet your next favorite author. The event will be held November 7th and 8th, with virtual pre-events November 2nd-6th featuring Iowa bookstores, libraries, and presses. View https://www.facebook.com/iaotherworlds for more details and to attend the actual event! Let us know here if you’re going to join us!

Hours of Event: Bookstores/libraries/presses Pre-Event- Monday, November 2nd-Friday, November 6th.

Author Event: Saturday: 10am-5pm and Sunday: 10am-5pm (hours might be slightly adjusted depending on participation. More information to come).

from https://www.facebook.com/events/4258466517560906/

So mark your calendars, click “attending” on the Facebook event, and come say, “Hi!” November 7th and 8th! Hope to see you there!

Facebook event link: https://www.facebook.com/events/4258466517560906/

All Hallows Write Tag

The ever amazing, and year-round spooooky Rami Ungar has tagged me. This looks like a lot of fun – and his answers were certainly awesome – so let’s see if I can be half as entertaining.


  • Provide a short description of your story.
    The vampire wars are over, but victory came at a steep price. Faced with returning to his home and his old life, Micah realizes that all of his close friends are dead. Rather than return to an empty town, he grabs Loren, and the two embark on a dream trip down Route 66. However, it’s nothing like the old brochures Pops used to show him. Attractions are long gone, and being a vampire further complicates tourism. Add to that a run in with someone from Micah’s past, and maybe he’d have been better off going home. It would have bene quieter, at least, and maybe the Executioners wouldn’t be hunting him down.
  • Don’t use the same character for more than 3 answers.
    Hmmmm. All right, we’ll try.

Questions and Answers

It’s Halloween night! What’s your protagonist dressed up as?
Micah isn’t big on the Halloween costume thing. Or at least he says he’s not. He says he wouldn’t dress up, but I’m pretty sure that if someone applied a little bit of pressure then he would, and use the excuse that so-and-so made him. He’d probably dress up as a vampire and think it’s hilarious. Or something involving flannel.

Who in your cast refuses to dress up and shows up at the Halloween party without a costume?
Okay, though we haven’t really run into him in the book yet, Jorick will no doubt show up eventually, so he counts as a character in the book. He would definitely not wear a costume. Not even if Katelina bullied him.

Which character wears the most outrageous costume, and what would it be?
That would be Verchiel. I could see him going as an 80s glam rocker, or else painting himself in various metallic body paints, sticking colorful feathers all over himself, and claiming he’s a parrot.

On Halloween, werewolves, vampires and zombies are on the prowl. Which of your characters get caught in their clutches, and which creature do they subsequently turn into?
Ha ha! Most of the characters are already vampires.

Who wins the contest for best costume?
We all know Verchiel’s feathers would start falling off, so he’d be out of the running. I think maaaaaybe Logan or Will (who are new characters you have never met.) No. Jessica. I bet she’d win. And she’d look fabulous doing it.

Who hands out toothbrushes to the trick or treaters?
Verchiel – not because he believes in it, but because he’d think it was funny.

Which two of your characters decide to pair up and do an angel/devil costume together?
Will and Loren maybe, though not in a romantic way., more in a buddy way. I had planned to give Loren a girl named Angel (funnily enough), but then Will showed up, and Jessica, and…well…I don’t think it’s going to happen now.

Someone is too scared to even attend the Halloween party. Who is it?
Will’s coven leader is kind of timid, but I don’t know that he’d be scared…

Who overdoses on candy and gets sick?
It would probably be Loren who would try to eat the candy and get sick because the vampires can’t digest food. Micah would do it if a little old lady offered it to him so that he didn’t hurt her feelings.

Which character is most likely to put a hex/curse on someone and who would they put it on?
Micah would curse Logan for sure. he has a LOT of unresolved anger towards him that probably stems from the whole abandonment thing…

I Tag You!

If you want to try this tag, then please do. But I’m tagging the following. You should check out their awesome blogs, too!

And that’s all for now. Look forward to some exciting news in the future (sadly it’s not a new book, but an upcoming author event. Come on. That’s still fun, isn’t it?)

Autographed Copies?

I have people ask me for autographed copies of the books, and until now I’ve had kind of a clumsy response. You’d think in eleven years I’d have thought of something more organized, but I didn’t – until now! Okay, no, actually *I* didn’t think of it, the amazing Erin Casey did, but I’m always delighted to run with other people’s ideas!

You can check out the spiffy order form here – you don’t actually have to purchase anything to take a look at it. Any feedback or suggestions would be great – sans adding book descriptions to the individual books because I tried that and it made it so clunky and hard to even figure out. (And if you see a typo, please, PLEASE, let me know!)

Have a great day and look for more exciting news coming soon!

Interviewed by Jenn Thompson

stolen from the IABE site. Come on, it was too cool not to grab!

Jenn Thompson over at the IABE blog has been kind enough to interview me. She had some great questions, like:

  • What new inspirations have you found, to keep yourself in the write mood?

*looks guilty* I haven’t actually done much writing. Between the doomfest and the uptick in graphic art work, time has been pretty hard to find, plus with my dad home more, there’s not much quiet time. I used to be able to write with racket going, and truthfully I could now if I’d quit making excuses – which I need to do because I have three people nagging me, ha ha!

So stop by and say hi and, while you’re there, check out the other interviews with some amazing writers!

Dr. Cushing’s Chamber of Horrors

Milwakee, Wisconsin— After a lifetime of traveling with their father to collect bizarre and “spooky” artifacts, twins Opal and Topaz Cushing are finally looking forward to a summer at home in their fixer upper Victorian mansion on the outskirts of London. That is, until strange things start happening in their wax works exhibit, and they soon find out the truth about that which goes bump in the night.

Stephen D. Sullivan brings back the thrills and chills of the old horror movie culture, in the latest title to be added to his prolific career, Dr. Cushing’s Chamber of Horrors.  This horror fantasy is set to release August 30, 2020 with Walkabout Publishing.

“Dr. Cushing is easily Sullivan’s best creation to date! Mixing the roller-coaster thrills of the Universal monster rally films like House of Frankenstein with the moody sexiness of Hammer’s 1960s gothic horrors, he throws in more monster fun than anyone has a right to expect! I’m ready for the sequel—now!”

Rodney Barnett, film scholar and co-host of the NaschyCast horror podcast

Sullivan’s latest release will be available at all major retailers as well as select indie bookstores upon release. His availability is limited to virtual signings, cons, and interviews until the current national pandemic crisis is contained.

About the Book:

The monsters aren’t only in the museum!

Despite a lifetime of traveling with their father to collect strange artifacts, twins Topaz and Opal Cushing have never fully believed in monsters or the supernatural. Oh, sure, they share an eerie psychic connection, and their tarot card readings often come true, but… Werewolves? Vampires? Living mummies? None of those could be real. Those legends are just for rubes. Right?

Since the girls’ father has been away, though, strange things have been happening in the family’s little exhibit—and in the waxworks studio that shares their dilapidated Victorian mansion on the outskirts of London. Now, the twins’ dreams of a fun, romantic summer season are turning into a nightmare, and the monsters are running…

Dr. Cushing’s Chamber of Horrors!

Print Length: 437 pages

Publisher: Walkabout Publishing (August 30, 2020)

Publication Date: August 30, 2020

Language: English


Pre-Order on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08F13XKQG

About the Author:

Stephen D. Sullivan has over sixty published titles to his name and helped create more comics and games than he can either list or remember.

A Scribe award-winner for “Best Novel Adaptation, 2016” with his book Manos: The Hands of Fate, Sullivan lives with his wife in a small town in Wisconsin.

You can contact him via Twitter, Facebook, Patreon, or on his website: http://www.stephendsullivan.com

Interview with Matthew Rattsifer

Welcome to what is usually a weekend interview (but I didn’t get it posted over the weekend, so…). Today we have Matthew Rattsifer, the author of Thirteen, the sequel to The Demon Journal. He’s been kind enough to answer some questions for us, so let’s dive right in.


J: Hello, Matthew. Can you tell us a little about Thirteen?

M: Firesouls: Thirteen is the concluding book to Firesouls: The Demon Journal.  I wanted to your typical story of taking what people consider the worst and make it the best.  Meaning I wanted to take people (or beings in this case) and make them the heroes.  I decided to create a group of a half-demon, a werewolf, an old-world gypsy, and a vampire that’s been around since the beginning of time.  Their mission in this book is to collect the thirteen crystal skulls to prevent others from using their powers to rule the world and to stop a forgotten God from taking over the Earth.

J: That sounds really intriguing. What inspired you to write it?

M:  In 2011 we went through a flood.  At the time we were living in a trailer.  Once the water receded we had no electric or hot water so all my money went to fuel for a generator to run the fridge and one light or the television.  At night we turned the light off so we could watch t.v.  I wasn’t able to buy new books to read to my kids so I began writing short stories for bed time.  Soon those stories got longer and longer, then because of everything we were going through I only saw the bad stuff in the world so I decided to write a story with bad guys as the good guys – thus the Demon Journal was created.

J:  It sounds like you were able to turn something negative into something positive. Speaking of positive, what was your favorite part of writing Firesouls: Thirteen?

M: Creating Asudem, the vampire.  She’s so unique, I had a lot of fun developing her character.

J: Is Asudem your favorite character, or does that honor belong to someone else?

M:  My all-time favorite character of this series would have to be Callisto, the gypsy.  She has mind control powers that give her the ability to control others or look into their minds.  She’s often referred to as the Mind Spider.  With those powers she can become intangible like a ghost, fly, and essentially be nearly immortal.

J: She does sound awesome. Did you have a least favorite part of writing the book?

M: In ‘the Thirteen’ there wasn’t really any of it I didn’t like to write.  I like looking into conspiracies and this book  is loaded with them, both church and government.  I had fun twisting them together.

J: What do you have planned next?

M: I’m finishing up my fourth book, ‘Chalk Hearts II’.  One of the main characters is a horror writer.  He’s well known for his ‘Justin Daemon’ series.  A vampire series.  I decided to create that series.  I’ve already got an outline for the first two books.

J: Wow! Sounds like you’re going to be busy! We know a lot about your book now, but what about you? Can you tell us one interesting thing about yourself before we go into the bonus round?

M: mmm, I don’t know if anyone will find this interesting or not, but when I write I play soundtracks.  With Demon Journal it was ‘the Craft’.  With ‘the Thirteen’, it was Men In Black.  With ‘Chalk Hearts’ I and II, it’s been Twilight.

J: That is interesting! I’ve always loved The Last Unicorn soundtrack. And now for the lightning round!

Favorite drink: Coke or Swiss sweet tea
Favorite cookie: Chip A Hoy chewy peanut butter cup
One weird habit: When I’m writing I gradually bring out more of the Fortnite characters I collect so by the time I’m done for the night the table is filled with a small army watching me.
Favorite dinosaur: the anklyosaurus because I think it looks like a spiked tank and who wants to mess with a spiked tank
Your spirit animal: Since I studied Druidry most of my life its a rat for my curiosity and an owl for the fact most of my life happens during the night

Thanks so much for coming to see us today, Matthew! And for the rest of you, thanks so much for stopping in. You can find Thirteen, and Matthew’s other books at https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/ratts.

Smashwords Summer/Winter Sale


It’s time for the bi-yearly Smashwords Summer/Winter sale (It’s summer here but in the southern hemisphere it’s winter). I’ve had the series on multiple sales this year with the pandemic stuff, so I’m not enrolling any of them. However, I did put the Tales of the Executioners Collections up as free downloads. I may take them out part way through (the sale is July 1st through July 31st) and swap something else in, so better grab your deal sooner rather than later.

Get both Tales of the Executioners Collections here: https://www.smashwords.com/books/byseries/38513

Also, if you’re near Des Moines, I’ll be there for the Indie Author Expo July 11th and 12th. It’s a free event, so stop in and say hi!

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  • Tales of the Executioners

    Short stories from the world of Amaranthine; a universe of blood and darkness where vampires don't sparkle and night is eternal. Each is about a member of the Executioners squad; the special vampire "police" force. Members both past and present share stories of assignments, origins, and more.

    Dark, light, love, laughter, death...you never know what you'll find in the shadows.

    Get your copy today!

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    Joleene Naylor

    An independent author, freelance artist, and photographer for fun who loves anime, music, and writing. Check out my vampire series Amaranthine at http://JoleeneNaylor.com or drop me a line at Joleene@JoleeneNaylor.com

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