Tuesday, November 30, 2010

DEVIL WITHOUT A CAUSE - A "Semi" Sneak Peek at the Cover!

Even though I've been forbidden to show the smokin' hot new cover for my newest release,    DEVIL WITHOUT A CAUSE, until sometime next month, I decided to bend the rules just a teensy bit and show you PART of it.

Let me say that I love it, and you definitely won't be disappointed when you see the full product.  :-)

It's kind of funny, actually, because when I wrote my first book, DEAD GIRLS ARE EASY, I envisioned a cool black and white cover with red lettering (preferably set in a graveyard).  I got the graveyard, but the rest of the cover was a wild riot of purple and green.  This cover, however, is much more what I envisioned for all my books - dark, sexy, and slightly mysterious.

The book itself is the same: dark, sexy, and slightly mysterious.  No tongue-in-cheek humor in this one, although Sammy Divine has a wit all his own.  I can't wait for you to meet the character of Finn, the rock-n-roll bad boy who long ago sold his soul in return for fame and fortune, and now wants it back.  I don't know which one of these hotties was my favorite, actually, because I enjoyed writing them both so much!

DEVIL WITHOUT A CAUSE is available for pre-order, and will be released May 31, 2011.  (It'll also be available in e-book form.)

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Of Life, Death and Tattoos

Firstly, let me say that I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving, full of family, food and fun. (And if you didn't, there's always next year!) :)

I had a really good holiday, with lots of diversity and new experiences. Instead of staying home and doing the cooking, I went to Atlanta to spend the holiday with extended family, and spent four days enjoying the break from my own routine.

I walked in some quiet woods, all by myself, just me, the falling leaves, and the faint strains of my brother-in-law playing his grand piano in the distance. I got soundly beaten at several games of pool, and kicked pinball machine butt (465, 500 points on a vintage machine!). I helped my sister (the florist) make and deliver last-minute flower arrangements for people who'd forgotten to send flowers to their family over the holiday (you know who you are!), and helped deliver arrangements to a grieving family at a funeral home. I enjoyed a chicken pesto panini in Little Five Points with my son, who in a case of "real-life-being-stranger-than-fiction", recently moved to the same neighborhood I chose to use as setting for the Nicki Styx books. (Needless to say, he loves it, and has become an L5 regular.)

I visited the tattoo parlor where my nephew (on the right) works, and made a new friend when he invited the guy who does the piercing to join us for dinner.  I visited with my one remaining uncle (still sharp at 83), got to know my pre-teen niece and nephew, and missed my mom the entire time. I laughed with my sisters over our lack of napkin-folding skills (among other things), and marveled at how my life has changed through the years: many of those I still love are gone, but there are new loved ones coming into my life all the time.

Diversity, my friends, is what life makes life interesting. :) I hope mine never stops being diverse.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Operation Christmas Child: Pack A Shoebox

This is National Collection Week for Operation Christmas Child (Nov. 15-22nd), and if you do nothing else good for yourself the entire year, trust me when I say that you should at least do this.

Operation Christmas Child is a way to bring an incredible amount of joy into the life of an underprivileged child, by way of a very small investment in time and effort, and a way to make you (and maybe your own kids) feel good in a way that will last all year.

It's a super simple idea, really. You get a shoebox, and you fill it with stuff that kids like. Small stuff, simple things like Matchbox cars for boys, hair clips for girls, small toys, balls, stickers, crayons, bubble gum. Add in a few things that kids need: a toothbrush, toothpaste, socks, underwear. You'll be surprised by how much you can get into a shoebox, and you'll be surprised how inexpensive it can be, particularly if there's a dollar store in your area. You can wrap the box if you want, but you don't have to. (I buy clear plastic shoeboxes myself, and don't wrap them. After they've been opened, the kids can put the stickers on them and use them to store things. These kids don't have much, so even a plastic box can become a treasure.)

Once you've filled the box, you can go HERE, to Samaritan's Purse and make a donation of $7.00 for shipping and handling. The automated system will give you a label with a tracking number on it which you stick to the box, and help you find the nearest drop-off location in your area by using your zip code. Go ahead, do a quick check to look for drop-off locations in your area, just for grins.

And that's it! You've made some underprivileged child very, very happy, and sown the seeds of kindness. Why wouldn't you want to do it? Watch the video and see how easy it is:

Sunday, November 14, 2010

It's My Party, and I (Won't) Cry If I Want To

If I did, they'd be sentimental tears, mushy tears -- not bad ones.  :) Today is my birthday, and it's been lovely; time with my family and lots of good wishes. I'm not sure why, but this year seems different than the *cough, cough* or so years before it - this year I'm really focusing on how lucky I am to be *cough, cough* years old, and doing what I love to do.

Writing is a dream for many people, but it's a dream that came true for me. Not only do I get to make up stories for a living, I get the chance to live out loud by sharing those stories with the world. I've met so many interesting and fascinating people in my role as an author; I've made many new friends and reconnected with some old ones, and I've been countlessly touched by the kindness of strangers who write to tell me how I've touched them, too.

Look at this cool birthday graphic sent to me by Justine, one of my readers; it makes me smile every time I look at it, because I know it was designed with my particular brand of quirkiness in mind!  This graphic would never have been made if Justine weren't a reader and I weren't a writer, and what a shame that would be!  (Thanks, Justine - it's adorable.)

Bottom line, I'm a very lucky woman, and today I'm making sure that I savor it, and appreciate it.  Life isn't always kind; I've had my share of tragedies and heartaches.  But today, on my birthday, I want to say "thank you" to those who make me smile, to those who helped me along the way, to those who let me into their lives through words on a page.

Take a minute and think about what gifts you have in your life, whether it's friends, family or just the astounding ability to cook, clean, work and multi-task without losing your mind.  :)

Today's my birthday, and that's what I'm doing.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Midnight Son, the Movie

I got an interesting email the other day from an independent movie producer named Matt Compton, who asked me to take a peek at the trailer for his new vampire movie:
"The film is entitled "Midnight Son", and it's a gritty, realistic new look at the vampire genre. We're putting the finishing touches on it at the moment."
I thought the trailer was pretty cool, actually.

It's not a "sparkly", self-sacrificing vampire kind of movie - there's a bit of gore (and if you read my blog you know I'm not a huge fan of gore), but touches some great universal themes, like love and acceptance, with some great glimpses into the hidden secrets of the heart. A seemingly normal guy slowly morphs into a vampire, and gets drawn into situations he'd never before imagined.

Anyway, I liked the trailer, and thought I'd share it with you.

If you liked it, want to know more about it, or just send Matt some encouragement, you can find out more at www.midnightsonmovie.

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Scaring It Forward

I got the nicest email the other day from one of the winners of my Halloween contest, Kimphy Allen of S. Carolina. Kimphy won the awesome Skull n' Roses wreath and garland, and was sweet enough to send me pictures of where she placed them in her home.  Here's part of what she said:

All Hallow's Eve came and past so quickly by that surely the wreath and the garland can stay up a while longer and on into the Yule holidays fast approaching. ;} Maybe? :} I hope these photos show up well in this email so you might see where I put each beauty to help celebrate Hallowe'en, Terri.

Thank you so much for this wonderful contest--I never expected to win!
I love how you draped the garland over that mirror, Kimphy, and thanks so much for letting me know that the wreath and garland found a good home!

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Descent Into the Maelstrom

October's over, and all my ghoulish fun is done; the tombstones and fog machines have been packed away for another year, and all that's left of Halloween is a few scattered candy wrappers.  *sigh*  It was a great time, but now I have to put it behind me, take a deep breath, and plunge into finishing the new novel, which is due to be turned into my publisher in February.

The tentative title is BORN INTO DARKNESS, but that may change before it's through, so don't hold me to it.  It's Book #2 in the Devil's Bargain series, and once again features that devilishly delicious bad boy, Sammy Divine.  This time Sammy is stirring up trouble for his old friend, the archangel Gabriel, and testing the boundaries of love and forgiveness.  I can't tell you much more than that, but suffice it to say that Sammy is raising a lot of Hell, and always manages to look damn sexy while he's doing it.  :-)

Wish me luck!