Ten Day Book Challenge: Day Five

I’ve been tagged by the spook-tacular Rami Ungar to do the ten day book challenge – Blog Style!

The rules:

  • Thank whoever nominated you with big, bold print. If they have a blog, link to the post where you got tagged there.
  • Explain the rules.
  • Post the cover of a book that was influential on you or that you love dearly.
  • Explain why
  • Tag someone else to do the challenge, and let them know they’ve been tagged.

Apparently I read a lot of books that do not exist on google images, so I am going to have to go take photos. In the meantime I bring you:

Image result for a candle in her room book ruth arthur

I love this book. I read it multiple times as a teenager and my amazing hubby dropped waaaaay too much to get me a copy so that I could – luckily – find out that I still love this book. I love the way the characters weave through it in the different eras, the creepy factor, and of course the whole gothic novel theme. But then I love a good gothic novel.

 

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Ten Day Book Challenge: Day Four

I’ve been tagged by the spook-tacular Rami Ungar to do the ten day book challenge – Blog Style!

Anyway, so the rules are simple:

  • Thank whoever nominated you with big, bold print. If they have a blog, link to the post where you got tagged there.
  • Explain the rules.
  • Post the cover of a book that was influential on you or that you love dearly.
  • Explain why
  • Tag someone else to do the challenge, and let them know they’ve been tagged.

Day Four is…

Image result for guilty pleasures laurell k hamilton

A friend at the time loaned me this book, and it was just as I started NaNoWriMo where I wrote Shades of Gray. It is 100% the reason there’s a “gleaming spinal column” on page one. I will admit, also, that I only read the first few books in the series (as that’s what my friend loaned me) and never went on because I heard it turned very erotic, and while that’s fine sometimes, it wasn’t what I was looking for at the time.

I’m not sure who else to tag, so I am going to leave this one open.

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Ten Day Book Challenge: Day Three

I’ve been tagged by the spook-tacular Rami Ungar to do the ten day book challenge – Blog Style!

Anyway, so the rules are simple:

  • Thank whoever nominated you with big, bold print. If they have a blog, link to the post where you got tagged there.
  • Explain the rules.
  • Post the cover of a book that was influential on you or that you love dearly.
  • Explain why
  • Tag someone else to do the challenge, and let them know they’ve been tagged.

Day three I’m doing a single book!

Image result for harry potter deathly hallows

I could have done the whole series, though it wasn’t the whole series itself that influenced me, rather the fan community. Thanks to a Harry Potter fan group I joined (on Yahoo groups. Ha ha! Those were the days!) I met tons of amazing people, and started writing again (including my Amaranthine Universe) but, as far as the individual books themselves, the seventh one influenced my writing in so far as showing me what not to do. In an earlier draft I had done the same kind of thing JK did – killed major characters offscreen and just revealed their dead bodies – but after reading it there, and seeing how unhappy that made me and my fellow fans, I realized we need to see the death of major characters, and if we can’t see it, then leave them for later. I also learned that the major characters really need to die for something. I get that senseless death is more realistic (and like JK I had it in an earlier version) but again, after the dissatisfaction I and my friends felt over some of them, I did more editing so that the deaths of major characters served a purpose (those nobodies are the ones you toss in just to up the body count). You also really need to hate the bad guy when they die so that you feel a sense of satisfaction. If they haven’t done anything really bad, you’re not going to care (again, it needs a purpose).

I guess you could say, though, that the overall series did teach me one thing, I learned how much people like a deep, complicated, immersive world. That was what a lot of people admitted to liking – not necessarily the writing style, or even the stories themselves, but the universe and the characters, which really hammered home important it is to craft those well.

And today I am tagging another amazing author, Roger Lawrence.

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Ten Day Book Challenge: Day Two

I’ve been tagged by the spook-tacular Rami Ungar to do the ten day book challenge – Blog Style!

The rules:

  • Thank whoever nominated you with big, bold print. If they have a blog, link to the post where you got tagged there.
  • Explain the rules.
  • Post the cover of a book that was influential on you or that you love dearly.
  • Explain why
  • Tag someone else to do the challenge, and let them know they’ve been tagged.

Day two is another kind of cheat because it’s a short story/poetry collection, but that’s life.

I know I’m crazy, but I spent way too long looking for a picture of the one we had when I was – again – a kid. Though we read the Telltale Heart in school (I’d actually read it before printed on the back of our “drawing paper” which came from the Shenandoah school’s recycle bin), I was never that impressed with it. (It’s still one of my least favorite stories), so I didn’t actually “discover” Poe until sixth grade when we read Annabel Lee. I went home enthusing about it, and my mother whipped this gem out of the bookcase and said, “yeah, we have that.” Oddly enough, the “Works of Poe” spine had never translated to Edgar Allan Poe in my brain (especially considering the other books in the set, such as Byron).

How has it influenced me? Um…I write creepy horror stories, that are often melancholy and/or depressing if I get my way (I try to make some of them not so dark, but I love them dark and heavy, really.) So, I think the influence is pretty easy to see without an explanation.

And today I’m tagging awesome author Barbara Tarn.

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Ten Day Book Challenge: Day One

I’ve been tagged by the spook-tacular Rami Ungar to do the ten day book challenge – Blog Style! This especially resonates with me because back in the day when social media was young, all tags were done in blogs. None of that facebook feed stuff, no quick five word statuses. No pictures without explanation.

Anyway, so the rules are simple:

  • Thank whoever nominated you with big, bold print. If they have a blog, link to the post where you got tagged there.
  • Explain the rules.
  • Post the cover of a book that was influential on you or that you love dearly.
  • Explain why
  • Tag someone else to do the challenge, and let them know they’ve been tagged.

Day one I’m kind of cheating because otherwise I have to use up three days to cover The Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien.

Image result for lord of the rings cover

Yes, these are the covers I grew up with, too. I still have Two Towers and Return of the King but Fellowship disintegrated. (I have newer copies of all, of course.)

Why were they influential? My dad was a big Tolkien geek, so we were raised on them. We started with the cartoons as toddler, moved to The Hobbit, as children, then on to the series proper in sixth grade, and later Silamarillion, etc. When I was four, the main characters were as familiar to me as Big Bird was. needless to say I was in heaven when the movies hit and it all became mainstream. People finally understood my jokes and references. I was no longer the only person I knew who was in love with Legolas. As to how it influenced me…Just as his universe (which encompasses so much more than just Middle Earth – named because it is the middle incarnation of the world, meaning there are other epochs besides that) is too expansive to get into in a single blog, so is listing all of the ways it has influenced me. However, I’ll pick one and say that I love the way the characters weave together to create the world, all of the little background people that pop up here, and then pop up there, and just the sheer expansiveness of it. It’s probably the reason I have a universe and not just a series for my own books.

I’m supposed to tag people, so I shall tag CG Coppola who is an awesome author and blogger!

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Masque of the Vampire Collector Cover is Retiring!

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Do you still need/want the hand drawn Masque of the Vampire cover for your Amaranthine collection? If so, you have until October to get it, and then it’s gone.

You can get a copy direct from Amazon (for $11.00 plus S&H if you don’t have prime) or you can contact me to get a signed copy (Message me on FB or send me an email), though the signed copy costs more (because I have to pay double postage – once to ship to me and again to ship to you, making it $15.00 total)*.

*prices for US only. No idea what International is.

So get your collector copy today, before it’s gone!

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Here’s what the “new” collector edition will look like:

There’s more to read…

I’ve mentioned the Amaranthine Unlocked posts, but I haven’t mentioned the other cool things I’ve posted on Patreon.

As I mentioned in a previous post, I’ve published all of the individual Tales of the Executioners that I’m going to*, though there are a few left to be written/edited that will appear ONLY in the collection (which I’m hoping to have out in October). Don’t want to wait that long? You can read some of them now, and the rest as I get them done. So far there is:

Philip– 1995. The Guild’s secret laboratory is Malick’s pet project, so when the scientists want to test the effects of stress on vampire abilities, Philip is assigned to “apply the stress”. If only he could tell anyone about it. (rough draft)

Roger: Just Another Night – A greater guard, Roger’s being punishment with citadel duty. Worse, he’s stuck on day shift. While everyone sleeps, he expects a quiet night. Too bad the universe doesn’t agree with him. (rough draft told in three parts: part 1 part 2 part 3)

Obrad – Fifteen years since Malick left, and Eileifr has decided to add new Executioners. Sent to Missouri to investigate rogues, the only thing Obrad wants to do is get home in time for the Executioner ceremony, not mess with messages from so-called vampire hunters. (edited)

As to what’s coming next, we have Senya, and Reymen still, and then it’s time to knuckle down and start Micah’s book before he goes off the rails and rebels. So, there’s going to be a lot to look forward to and, as a patron, you’ll get it before anyone else. Not that you have to read it right away. Take your time, it will still be there when you have a free moment to enjoy it.

So check it out! Becoming a patron not only entitles you to really cool stuff (like input on rough drafts) but it also helps me, so I can keep creating good content for you!

* In order to publish the collection on Amazon and charge money for it, I have to have some material in it that isn’t available for free elsewhere – aka there have to be “exclusive” stories in it. I ran into that trouble with Vampire Morsels, which is why I never released the last few morsels as freebies.

More Alternate Universe Fun

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I asked what you wanted to see, and Leigha answered! So, this week’s Amaranthine Unlocked post over on Patreon is a continuation of last week’s Alternate Universe scene where Katelina runs away with Verchiel.

Did you miss part one? You can catch it here. Not sure what the heck this whole Patreon, Amaranthine Unlocked thing is? You can get that information over here. 

And no, I will eventually stop posting here about the posts there, so if you want alerts later on, you need to be a follower or Patron.

What would you like to see posted on Amaranthine Unlocked? Head over there and let me know in the comments!

Alternate Universe Scene with Katelina & Verchiel

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I promise I’m not going to do a blog post every time I put up an Amaranthine Unlocked post over on Patreon, even though the Unlocked posts are free to everyone. Posting an alert here each time would defeat the point of posting there in the first place. I may post alerts for the first few, but after that it will stop unless it’s something really amazing.

Anywho, the first Unlocked post is up. It’s an alternate scene between Katelina and Verchiel that is not safe for work, if you get my meaning. Jorick shippers, don’t worry: this alternate scene, or even the storyline it could make, will never be part of canon. Look at it as fan fiction for fun. Steamy fan fiction.

Now, go give it a read and be sure to hit the follow button (which is free).

Complain and Ye Shall Receive.

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The other day I complained that Patreon had not approved me yet – so today they did. Ha ha! Isn’t that the way it works?

What is Patreon? Patreon is a cool site that lets you subscribe to extra benefits from creators. It allows me to make a little bit of cash, so I can keep devoting time to the fun aspects of Amaranthine, and lets Patrons get interesting stuff that no one else does.

So I have to pay? It depends on what you want. The Amaranthine Unlocked posts are going to be free to everyone (more on that later). Or, for 1$ a month you’ll get the short stories I publish sent directly to your email or kindle (before they’re publicly available) and also get your name listed on the thank you pages of everything I publish (while you’re a patron). For 5$ a month you get those perks, plus access to every rough draft I write, as I write it. For instance, right now I have the rough draft of Tales of the Executioners: Philip posted for patrons. I just finished it last night. My beta readers haven’t even seen it yet. You can’t get much faster than that, unless you’re sitting next to me.

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Amaranthine Unlocked? Amaranthine Unlocked posts will be special, fun posts aimed at Amaranthine fans. They might be character interviews, alternate POV scenes, alternate universe clips (think fan fiction scenes but written by me), background information… whatever it is YOU want to see. That’s right, I want YOU to tell me what it is you want, and I’ll do it. These posts will be free to everyone.

Why aren’t you just posting this stuff on your blog? That’s a good question. The blog, while useful and fun, doesn’t really excel at creating participation. There are also new notification issues with it, and fun stuff gets lost in between posts about new releases, interviews, and even promotions of other authors. The Amaranthine Unlocked will be JUST the fun stuff.

So, what are you waiting for? Go check it out!  

https://www.patreon.com/JoleeneNaylor

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  • A Year of Short Stories

    A year of short stories kicks off with the Tales of the Executioners!

    Free 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 all the details, including a list of available titles!

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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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