Posts Tagged ‘poison’

legacy pbackPOISONSEDUCTION

The Forever Kingx200BROKEN_SWORD_1200third_magic_2100

Molly Cochran is the author and co-author with Warren Murphy of many amazing books, including the New York Times Bestseller and classic Arthurian novel THE FOREVER KING (as well as the sequels THE BROKEN SWORD and THE THIRD MAGIC).  If you liked T.H. White’s THE ONCE AND FUTURE KING, Mary Stewart’s CRYSTAL CAVES or Marion Zimmer Bradley’s THE MISTS OF AVALON, you’ll love Molly’s work.  And the best part is that she’s brought the Arthurian legends to modern day while still keeping all the historical feel and flavor.  The same goes for her Katy Ainsworth novels, set in a town in Massachussets run by witches where the young heroine discovers her very dark and dangerous legacy (LEGACY, POISON and SEDUCTION…and also her novella “Wishes”).  Really, you won’t want to miss Molly’s work…or her guest blog below.

WRITE WHAT YOU LOVE

                Write what you know. It’s the First Great Commandment of writing, and it’s true. You can’t write convincingly about Admiral Byrd’s expedition to the South Pole if you’ve never been cold. Unfortunately, that dictum has scared a lot of would-be novelists into writing only about their own personal experiences. That’s fine as far as it goes—provided your xperience has been so extraordinary that people who don’t know you will want to read about it—but that sort of extremely personal work, generally known as a coming-of-age novel, tends to be a one-shot deal. It’s nothing if not restrictive if you’re planning a career as a writer.

So a better mantra than write what you know might be, in my opinion, write what you love. What excites you? Baseball? Fashion? Paris? Whatever your passion, whether it’s knitting or speculating about the end of the world, your interest in the subject will breathe life into your work.

Writing what you know helps if what you know is something special. Patricia Cornwell, who writes so convincingly about forensic science, spent many years working as a medical examiner. Not surprisingly, Scott Turow and John Grisham, both lawyers, bring insider knowledge to their novels about corporate crime. But let’s be honest: How many jobs have you held that you would deem worthy of a novel?

Intimate and esoteric knowledge is the key to writing a work that stands out from the crowd, but that knowledge need not come from direct experience. In William Wharton’s bestseller Birdy, the protagonist is an autistic man who owns hundreds of birds. Obviously the author has an encyclopedic knowledge of these creatures, but it is his passion, not his knowledge, that allows him to write in a way that makes birds fascinating to the general public.

Think about the things you love to do—cooking, skateboarding, surfing, skiing, playing an instrument, dancing, video games . . . or the things you’d love to learn about—movies, dogs, design, magic, the music industry, the history of the town where you live . . . Those subjects are all fodder for possible bestsellers, founded on knowledge of your subject and ignited by your passion for it. That passion might even be for something that doesn’t exist. Anne Rice has made no secret of her obsession with the idea of vampires walking undetected among us. Whitley Strieber is clearly fascinated by the possibility of extraterrestrial aliens visiting earth.

In my own case, a lifelong interest in the legend of King Arthur has borne fruit in not one, but two books. Since childhood, I’ve read obsessively about Arthur Pendragon and the Knights of the Round Table. In grade school, I studied the clothing and architecture of Fifth Century Britain. I devoured tracts on sword making and medieval combat. T.H.White’s The Once and Future King and Mary Stewart’s Merlin trilogy were my bibles. The first time I saw John Boorman’s Excalibur, I thought I’d found my way to heaven.

So it was almost inevitable that one day I would write my own version of Camelot. In The Forever King, ten-year-old Arthur Blessing is unaware that he is the reincarnation of King Arthur of Britain until he discovers a cup that heals wounds and bestows eternal life—the Holy Grail, that brings with it great danger and the fulfillment of an ancient prophecy. That book became an international bestseller, and I believe that much of its success was because I was so deeply invested in the subject that the novel reflected more than mere factual knowledge: It was filled with love.

That love carried over into a second novel, written much later. In Poison, I revisited the Arthur legend by reworking the character of Morgan le Fay into a feminist archetype that lent humanity to a woman who has been historically depicted as a villainess. In both cases, my passion for the subject drove both the story and the writing of that story, and as a result, both novels were deeply satisfying projects for me.

So if you’re thinking that you have to write another Divergent or Twilight to make it as a writer, think again. Writing a novel is a long, complex process. Copying someone else, no matter how successful that writer is, probably won’t work, because you can only put your heart into something you love.

And your heart will show, on every page., in every sentence. Love makes the difference. Write what you love.

Awesomely exciting day today, because of two new releases (well, paperback reissues of wonderful hardcover originals) and a new vlog from Amy Christine Parker and I, this one on writers’ block.

New releases!

legacy pbackpoison pback

These are the first two novels in Molly Cochran’s wonderful YA series featuring Katy Ainsworth.  I love the way the author combines contemporary, historical, myth, magic, suspense, mayhem…all of my favorite things whipped up into a witches’ brew.  Check out these great quotes:

Praise for Legacy:

“Will satisfy readers hungry for a little paranormal excitement and romance in a post-Twilight world… a quick, entertaining read.”—Kirkus

“an exciting and well-written tale of contemporary witchcraft and romance…should please the legions of paranormal fans looking for a sophisticated supernatural thriller.” —Publishers Weekly

“The well conceived history and culture of Katy’s magical world make this first title unique … The teasing epilogue promises a sequel, and readers will be ready for it.” —Booklist

“A fast-paced, electrifying read! My heart throbbed for the tender romance trapped in a world of boarding-school backstabbing. With a courageous yet achingly human heroine, Molly Cochran made me believe in magic!”–Jeri Smith-Ready, award-winning author of the SHADE trilogy

“An amazing debut crackling with magic and mystery!”–Shannon Delany, author of 13 to Life

“Wonderful book. Eerie and suspenseful, with a romance you root for all the way through.”–Janice Hardy, author of The Healing Wars

Praise for Poison:

“POISON is a strong story, filled with empathetic characters, in amazing circumstances. This Young Adult novel is a wonderful read not only for teens but adults as well.” —Fresh Fiction

“The introduction of Arthurian legend is intriguing, and the last few chapters are real nail-biters.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Cochran revisits Arthurian legend while continuing the adventures of powerful, young witch Katy Ainsworth. . . . Fans will be poised for the next installment.”—Booklist

“Fans of Arthurian legend will appreciate this alternative view of the infamous Morgan le Fay.”—School Library Journal

Best of all, if you like these, you can get more of Katy and her friends in Molly’s novella Wishes and in the third Katy novel, SEDUCTION, which releases in December of this year!

Let’s quickly talk about some other awesome books that have recently been released in lower priced formats:

goldencity_100dpi THE GOLDEN CITY by J. Kathleen Cheney – award-winning epic fantasy debut! (Sequel, SEAT OF MAGIC, coming July 1st!)

Gated_hires_pback GATED by Amy Christine Parker (with a brand new cover!)- a young adult thriller about a girl who lives in a cult and begins to doubt all she’s learned just as the “end times” come upon them (next book, ASTRAY, is coming August 26th!)

thieves' quarry THIEVES’ QUARRY by D.B. Jackson – second in the author’s wonderful “tri-corn punk” historical fantasy series (after THIEFTAKER and before A PLUNDER OF SOULS, coming July 8th!)

And now, for the moment you’ve all been waiting for!  Amy Christine Parker and I vlog about how to deal with writers’ block.  Warning for the feint of heart – there may be a moment wherein you actually see my navel.  You’ll have to check out the vlog if you want to know more.

goldencity_100dpi seatofmagic_100dpi

A few things I’m really excited about today.  One is wishing J. Kathleen Cheney HUGE congratulations for finaling in the Locus Award for Best First novel for her wonderful fantasy THE GOLDEN CITY (to be followed July 1st by the sequel, THE SEAT OF MAGIC).  Such a worthy book in such prestigious company!

wishes legacy pback poison pback  SEDUCTION

More exciting news: those of you already familiar with Molly Cochran‘s wonderful YA novels for Paula Wiseman Books/S&S will be thrilled to know that there’s a new Katy e-novella out called WISHES (and for only $1.99)!  Those of you who aren’t yet familiar, there’s no time like the present to dip into the world, especially with the specially priced novella out and the paperbacks of the first two books soon to be released: LEGACY and POISON.  Her third Katy book, SEDUCTION, is scheduled for December 2014.

There have been so many exciting things going on lately that I haven’t found time to blog about them!  If you’re looking for something pithy-ish, I was over at Magical Words last week with an ode to stream-of-consciousness, my fifth grade teacher and the writing process.  If you’re looking for me to share with the class some of the excitement that’s been keeping me on my toes, stay with me here.

In no particular order, because it’s all so cool:

fallofnight Rachel Caine, partnering with producer/director Blake Calhoun, has started a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds to make her internationally bestselling Morganville Vampires books into a web series, starting Amber Benson as Amelie.  Over $18,000 raised in just two days! Check it out!

wicked earl The first novel in Vicky Dreiling’s awesome new Sinful Scoundrels series came out from Warner Forever.  Who doesn’t want to know WHAT A WICKED EARL WANTS?  Romantic Times gave it a Top Pick! rating and raves, “Dreiling’s first book in the Sinful Scoundrel’s series is wonderful! Rife with the Regancy’s penchant for gossip, scandal and matchmaking, WHAT A WICKED EARL WANTS is a delightful romance featuring a rakish hero, an innocent widow, corrupt villans and a secondray cast of characters who add dimension, wit and tenderness to the plot. Reasers will find this a real pleasure to savor.”  Doesn’t get better than that!

Tor UK announced their pre-empt of a fabulous debut series by one of my clients, Genevieve Cogman.  As they describe it, THE INVISIBLE LIBRARY is like “Doctor Who with Librarian Spies”.  What more could you want?

some girls bite Chloe Neill is doing a giveaway on GoodReads of autographed copies of her first bestselling Chicagoland Vampires novel SOME GIRLS BITE.

In celebration of National Audiobook month, Tantor, which does the audiobooks for both the Morganville and Chicagoland Vampires series, is offering 50% off until June 30th!

SF Signal is doing a cover reveal and giveaway for CRUX, the sequel to Ramez Naam’s blockbuster NEXUS.  You can win the book even before you can buy it!  (Ends Sunday, so don’t wait!)

thieves' quarry Also, check out what you can do to win an advance reading copy of David B. Coe’s THIEVES’ QUARRY, the sequel to his “tricorn punk” THIEFTAKER.

Molly Cochran is all over the blogosphere this week on tour for her amazing YA novels LEGACY and POISON. A few samples with giveaways:

Fantasy’s Ink

Two Chicks on Books

The Best Books Ever

Happy book birthdays to Molly Cochran!  That’s right, “birthdays”…plural!  The paperback edition of her acclaimed YA debut LEGACY and the hardcover and e-book editions of the sequel, POISON, are both out today from Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books!

LEGACY

Overview

An “exciting and well-written tale of contemporary witchcraft and romance” that will “please the legions of paranormal fans looking for a sophisticated supernatural thriller” (Publishers Weekly).

When her widowed father dumps sixteen-year-old Katy Jessevar in a boarding school in Whitfield, Massachusetts, she has no idea that fate has just opened the door to both her future and her past. Nearly everyone in Whitfield is a witch, as is Katy herself, although she has struggled all her life to hide her unusual talents. Stuck at a boarding school where her fellow students seem to despise her, Katy soon discovers that Whitfield is the place where her mother committed suicide under mysterious circumstances when Katy was just a small child. With dark forces converging on Whitfield, it’s up to Katy to unravel her family’s many secrets to save the boy she loves—and the town itself—from destruction.

Legacy is a compelling tale that is as believable as it is magical, and the irresistible romance continues in Poison, its sequel.

Poisoncover-small

Overview

Arthurian legend mixes with modern-day witchcraft in this haunting sequel to Legacy, which Kirkus Reviews said “Will satisfy readers hungry for a little paranormal excitement and romance in a post-Twilight world… a quick, entertaining read.”

After the riveting—and romantic—events of Legacy, Katy has won Peter’s heart and is now claiming her place in the magical world. Though half the students at her boarding school come from witching lines, the use of magic is expressly forbidden at Ainsworth, so as to keep the witching world hidden from the blue-blooded preppies, aka Muffies, who also walk the halls.

But the Muffies have at least a notion of magic, because Katy catches them staging a made-up ritual—and to her astonishment, the girls collapse at Katy’s feet and fall into comas. When Katy is blamed, she becomes desperate to clear her name and finds herself battling all odds to harness her growing magical powers in order to save the Muffies and dispel the Darkness once more.

Two great tales, no waiting!

Okay, maybe my pride isn’t paranormal, but these books are.  Tuesday saw the release of DD Barant’s latest Bloodhound Files novel UNDEAD TO THE WORLD and next Tuesday sees the release of Molly Cochran’s wonderful young adult novel POISON, sequel to LEGACY.  (For those of you who remember Molly Cochran and Warren Murphy’s NYT bestselling, classic Arthurian novel THE FOREVER KING and sequels, you’ll really enjoy these books.  For those of you who don’t…well, chop chop.  What’s holding you back?)

UNDEAD TO THE WORLD by DD Barant

Vampires, werewolves, shapeshifters, ghosts—profiler Jace Valchek thought she had seen it all. Until now…

Jace’s return to Kansas is an instant reminder that there really is no place like home. The tavern is still brimming with losers, practical jokers, and motorcycle chicks. Even the town’s only Goth is still wearing eyeliner. But just as Jace is about to click her heels and hightail out of there, she’s roped into a brand-new case. Somebody is possessed. And the bodies are piling up…

UNDEAD TO THE WORLD

They call him the Gallowsman. According to legend, he was sentenced to hang—though his crimes still have not been specified. When he was strung up to die, his spirit stuck around waiting for people to hang themselves…so he could steal their bodies. Now, with the undead rising up and going on a rampage, Jace must put her own neck on the line. Can she get the Gallowsman to give up the ghost?

Reviews

“Snappy writing, a page-turning story and fresh world-building make Dying Bites a satisfying meal of a book.”—Kelley Armstrong, New York Times bestselling author of Men of the Otherworld and The Awakening

Dying Bites is wacky, unpredictable, fresh and amazing.  I would kill to write as well as D.D. Barant. Seriously.”—Nancy Holder, author of Pretty Little Devils  

“This engrossing debut adds another captivating protagonist to the urban fantasy ranks…Barant’s well-developed world offers intriguing enhancements to mythology and history. Jace is remarkable, strong-willed and smart, and she sets an unstoppable pace. Look for the Bloodhound Files to go far.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“A heroine with plenty of guts, moxie and a sense of the absurd.  [A] fresh and original take on urban fantasy…Huge kudos to Barant for spicing things up with a story that expertly integrates detective work, kick-butt action and a wacky sense of humor.  Make sure you get in early on the outstanding new Bloodhound Files series.”—RT Book Reviews

“D D Barant builds a strong world and fills it with fascinating characters that will delight and entertain. Dying Bites is a well-written urban fantasy with a gripping plot and a heroine who is quite believable with her very human flaws.  I’m looking forward to seeing more in this captivating world.”—Darque Reviews (starred read)

“Five stars. An exciting new series. It has humor, mystery, and adventure. A great book!”—Affair de Coeur

“Barant does an excellent job introducing a whole new world where vampires make up the majority of the population…quick and engrossing…a great new series.”—The Romance Reader

POISON by Molly Cochran

Arthurian legend mixes with modern-day witchcraft in this haunting sequel to Legacy, which Publishers Weekly said “should please the legions of paranormal fans looking for a sophisticated supernatural thriller.”

After the riveting—and romantic—events of Legacy, Katy has won Peter’s heart and is nowclaiming her place in the magical world. Though half the students at her boarding school come from witching lines, the use of magic is expressly forbidden at Ainsworth, so as to keep the witching world hidden from the blue-blooded preppies, aka Muffies, who also walk the halls.

But the Muffies have at least a notion of magic, because Katy catches them staging a made-up ritual—and to her astonishment, the girls collapse at Katy’s feet and fall into comas. When Katy is blamed, she becomes desperate to clear her name and finds herself battling all odds to harness her growing magical powers in order to save the Muffies and dispel the Darkness once more.

Reviews

“Will satisfy readers hungry for a little paranormal excitement and romance in a post-Twilight world… a quick, entertaining read.”—Kirkus

“an exciting and well-written tale of contemporary witchcraft and romance…should please the legions of paranormal fans looking for a sophisticated supernatural thriller.” —Publishers Weekly

“The well conceived history and culture of Katy’s magical world make this first title unique … The teasing epilogue promises a sequel, and readers will be ready for it.” —Booklist

“A fast-paced, electrifying read! My heart throbbed for the tender romance trapped in a world of boarding-school backstabbing. With a courageous yet achingly human heroine, Molly Cochran made me believe in magic!”–Jeri Smith-Ready, award-winning author of the SHADE trilogy

“An amazing debut crackling with magic and mystery!”—Shannon Delany, author of 13 to Life

“Wonderful book. Eerie and suspenseful, with a romance you root for all the way through.”—Janice Hardy, author of The Healing Wars