Saturday, January 31, 2015

Night of Living Dead Prequel Coming

Interesting news - 

It looks like the original Night of the Living Dead (black and white, 1968) will be updated with a new prequel - from director George Romero's son, Cameron Romero!

It will be called Origins. Read more here.  It'll be interesting to see how this is updated to today's movie standards. The original black-and-white succeeded in that it made you feel for the main character and be horrific without all the graphic red-blood gore. It was gory - and scary enough - in itself!

Friday, January 30, 2015

Happiness in a Box

One of my favorite things to get in the mail is books--especially my own.  There is just something magical and awesome about holding my hard work in my hand.  Earlier this week, I experienced just that when Dealing with Devils showed up on my doorstep.

There are two books in the series now, with the third on the way (I'm still working on it), but they look absolutely awesome together.  Makes me so happy!

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Baby Shoes Anthology Kickstarter Ends Soon! Yes and #zombies!

ENDING SOON!  At this writing, it's at nearly $1500 of the $1800 asked for - ends FEB. 9! 

Get in on a unique Kickstarter project! - See the Baby Shoes Flash Fiction Anthology Kickstarter!

The Baby Shoes Flash Fiction Anthology features 100 stories from 100 authors.

The Kickstarter hopes to raise $1800 - and ends FEB 9 - 9:17 pm central time.

It features assorted stories under 1,000 words.

Oh, yes, those zombies...  I just had to... Well, in my story, "Second Chances," the  "crazy hoarder" lady has the last laugh when the Z-apocalypse hits. She has plenty to live on, but one worry - what happened at the day care? Her discovery results in, yes, "Second Chances."

It's a story with #zombies and heart.  (Not what you think!)

Monday, January 26, 2015

Writing Blog Hop: Horror with WD Gagliani

Today for the Writing Blog Hop,  I'm talking with horror author W.D. Gagliani about his writing process. 

 Name: W.D. Gagliani
Author of: The Nick Lupo Series of Horror-Thrillers (Wolf’s Trap, Wolf’s Gambit, Wolf’s Bluff, Wolf’s Edge, and Wolf's Cut, plus the thriller Savage Nights)

1. What am I working on?

I’m working on various projects, but most importantly at the moment Wolf’s Blind, the 6th Lupo thriller. Also a standalone novel with my long-time collaborator David Benton, as well as a few other things on various degrees of simmer.

2. How does my work differ from others in the genre?
I like to bring in elements from other genres, so my horror is full of thriller tropes (and vice-versa), plus some historical fantasy, erotica, and strong echoes of crime and noir. I like to think it makes for a spicier blend than average, but I guess readers have to judge if I’m successful or not.

3. Why do I write what I do?

I grew up on thrillers and came to love horror early on, too. I’ve always enjoyed SF and Fantasy and crime and mysteries. I just naturally gravitated toward writing in those areas and, whenever possible, blending the elements together. I’ve always enjoyed adventure tales of all kinds, so I try to make my work active and adventurous. But even in my non-horror reading, I was always most attracted by the darker elements. I guess I’m the result of all these influences!

4. How does my writing process work?

I would need dozens of paragraphs to explain it. I like to loosely outline a novel but leave in a fair amount of “gaps” so at any time I can take it in any direction the characters prefer. I like parallel stories, so I often work on two that become intertwined through the book. And I love to use various characters as viewpoint characters in their own sections, so the story is seen a little bit like a movie, where we end up seeing what happens to different people in different places, sometimes the same events from several POVs. 

Heh, my process is to write completely out of order sections and HOPE I can stitch them together in a way they’ll make sense. So far, this system has worked for me despite the stress it induces. Oh, do you mean on a practical level? I force myself to write 2 hours per night Mon-Thurs and at least 4-5 hours each Sat and Sun (with exceptions, of course). This includes a fair amount of time-wasting with promotion, Facebook, email, research, daydreaming, and otherwise useless internet meandering.

 ** See other Writing Blog Hops:

W. D. Gagliani - Horror
Jean Rabe  - Sci Fi
C. A. Verstraete - Horror/zombies

Coming up:  

Courtney Mroch - Short fiction

Friday, January 23, 2015

Testing Weapon Effectiveness Against Zombies

Have you ever heard of ZombieGoBoom?  If not, check them out right now.  They are AWESOME!  They test weapons to find out how effective they would be against zombies.  They have a YouTube page that shows what they do, and then they sell the amazing weapons on their site.

Talk about some practical and helpful advice for the apocalypse.  I know where I'm going for my next weapon...

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

#Horror #Sci Fi #zombie Sequels-Reboots!

Looks like some good stuff is coming our way!

Sometimes reboots and sequels can be a good thing. (We hope!)

* First off, Fox TV is supposedly rebooting The X Files with Scully and Mulder!

* Then... has it really been five years since the fun Zombieland movie? 

Well, it looks like a script is being worked on for Zombieland 2. Loved this movie; just light goofy fun and Woody Harrelson is always great.

Monday, January 19, 2015

#Mystery #Horror Book News

All kinds of book news this week!

BIG Congrats are due to my fellow authors at Intrigue Publishing who are  nominated for LOVEY Awards at the Love is Murder Mystery Conference for their mystery/thrillers. (Wow quite a bunch of contenders in that category this year! See list of all nominees.)  The event will be held Feb. 6 to 8 in Rosemont, Ill. 

If you recall, my book, GIRL Z: My Life as a Teenage Zombie won for best Paranormal-Sci Fi last year. The award is for recently published books in the award year.  

Intrigue's Lovey Nominees include:

 Beyond Blue  - Austin Camacho
Beyond Blue is a detective novel about a privately funded detective agency whose only purpose is to help police officers who are in trouble.  The novel follows four of the agency's cases, which overlap and intersect: Agency director, Paul Gorman, is at the center of the action, pulling the strings to direct his detectives to solve their cases and cover each other. The concept is held together by Gorman's mission statement: "Those sworn to protect us sometimes need protection themselves.  To defend the boys in blue when they are in danger, sometimes you have to go beyond blue."

Death and White Diamonds  - Jeff Markowitz  
Did you ever have one of those days? You know the kind, when nothing seems to go right?Richie's girlfriend suggests a romantic getaway, promising him a week-end he will never forget. So why can't he remember what happened, when he finds her lifeless body on the beach? Richie is fairly certain he didn't kill his girlfriend, but his memory is hazy. One thing, however, is clear. When Lorraine's body is found, he's going to be the prime suspect in a murder investigation. If her body is found.Disposing of the body turns out to be harder than Richie could have imagined. Losing it, however, is easy.Did you ever have one of those days? And we haven't even gotten to the bad part yet.

  Retribution -Annie Rose Alexander 

An NFL Linebacker, Brian Williams, is found dead in the middle of the street in the nation's capital. In the following weeks more famous athletes are found murdered, each in a different way. The police and FBI are stumped. Homicide detectives Ariel Summers and Paul Costello are brought in to investigate. Ariel's private investigator boyfriend, Jason Steel, is hired by William's wife to find answers and is soon clashing with Ariel over the investigation and her arrest of his new client. But as the death toll continues to rise, the citizens of DC panic. When Ariel and Jason's close friends and family members are threatened, they are forced to work together on a plan to trap the nation's most dangerous and cold-blooded assassin in history.

Other Book News:

I can't close this without some horror book news, can I?

 Lori R. Lopez has a new release! Odds And Ends: A Dark Collection features 26 tales, clusters of flash stories or drabbles wedged between dark poems and essays on women writing horror.  The print edition features "peculiar" illustrations by the author. (Her words not mine!) Warning: not for the squeamish! 

Among the “Odds And Ends” . . . a devilish jack-in-the-box helps a young woman get even. Two little girls face-off in “Nemeses”. A very old baby is released from its jar at a museum in “Jar Baby”. Spaghetti comes to life in “Bloodwyrm”. A trainride takes one fellow on a harrowing journey toward “Fate”. A man and woman are reunited by the same curse that tore them apart in “The Fruit Of Thy Womb”. A weakling finds a dreadful “Cereal Box Surprise” at the bottom of the package. Ladies play a lethal hand of cards in “Mindless”. A couple wakes up to discover an enormous cobweb filling the house in “Spider Soup”. Falling asleep could end the world in “Awake”, while painting portraits takes a nightmarish turn for an artist in “Deathbed”. A girl watches her friends disappear on a darkly sinister beach at “The Vanishing Point”, and much much more.

Get it at: B&N - -  Amazon UK

* Here's an excerpt from "The Vanishing Point" in Odds And Ends: A Dark Collection 

Eventually her pals vanished, completely obscured by shadows.  Even their voices faded, and she could hear only the roar of a rising tide.

The party must have ended.  A sense of isolation overwhelmed the girl.  It felt as if she were alone in the universe, fog shrouding her vistas, concealing the perimeters.  Waiting was like a starkly depicted black-and-white mystery, a moody Hitchcock or Noir thriller, like the ones they showed in Film Appreciation class.  The moment seemed frozen, exceeding the limits of endurance.  Edgy, fidgeting, she finally paced in front of the wall.  The girl paused to glance toward the spot where she had last glimpsed her friends.  They weren’t coming back.  They were simply gone.

“This isn’t happening.”  She spoke aloud to break the undertow of silence that contradicted an irregular booming of surf.  “Come on, guys.”  They didn’t disappear.  She just couldn’t see or hear them anymore.  The wait was intolerable, miserable.  She lost the ability to measure time and pictured a drooping languid clock from a Salvador Dali painting.  The hands crawled like snails, impossibly slow.  It could have been hours since the boys left.  Each second was thicker, retarded like running in sand or a dream.  A chill coursed her veins.  Panic scaled her like a ladder, with heavy treads.  Compelled to scream, the young woman gritted her teeth, refusing to overreact.  Come on, guys.  This isn’t funny.


That’s my favorite part of this particular tale in my new horror collection.  The story was inspired by a nighttime visit to a boardwalk along a beach in the San Diego area with my sons.  I watched them walk off into the darkness toward the ocean, hearing the surf boom yet unable to see it.  They melted into the darkness in a surreal sort of way and didn’t return for a while.  I couldn’t help feeling like I was in some mysterious black-and-white film.  I feature the location in the story.  I knew when I went home I would have to write about my impressions.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

#Zombie TV Show Coming in March!

Finally!  Heard about this a while back, so I wondered when it would air. 

The mid-season, DC comics-inspired TV series iZombie will be airing on the CW (Chicago channel 9) beginning March 17.

Check out the ComicCon video and a preview of episode one at the link above. - Check out the Facebook page. (A couple of the videos are on there also.)

Friday, January 16, 2015

Happy Release Day! #horror

Dealing with Devils, the second book in The Road to Salvation series is now available! The first is The Appeal of Evil. I’m so very excited!

Dating a demon has its advantages, like helping deliver souls to Hell. Wait...what? Katie’s world has been turned upside down. She's fallen for Josh—despite the fact that he’s a demon from Hell. Wes is finally out of her system and her life. Convinced she can change Josh, she sets out to make him a better person, only to find out things aren’t as simple as she’d originally thought. For one thing, Josh has Katie help him deliver souls to Hell, and she kind of likes it. And to top it off, other more powerful demons are battling for her soul, and revelations from the past could change the course of her life forever.

My amazing book manager created some fantastic teasers about the book. Check them out! And check out the book when you get a chance!

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Writing Blog Hop: Jean Rabe talks writing

Following my post about my own writing process for the Writing Blog Hop, I invited several other authors to share their own thoughts.  I figure it's a good way to peek over the shoulders of other writers and learn from them. 

Today best-selling author Jean Rabe talks about her writing. 

Name: Jean Rabe
Author of: 31 fantasy and adventure novels, 70 short stories

Her recent book is The Cauldron  (It will be coming out in a new version soon.)

1. What am I working on?
  • A short story set in a 1920s Chicago neighborhood on a moon base
  • A fantasy short story with dwarves
  • A science fiction novel with female impersonators and horrible weather
  • A cozy murder mystery set in Indiana

2. How does my work differ from others in the genre?

Hmmmmmmm … I write in various genres, currently loving urban fantasy. Plan to write two more urban fantasy novels after I finish my current projects. I’d say my work differs ‘cause it’s my work, not another author’s. Actually, that’s a tough question, as I don’t read a lot of urban fantasy…even though it’s my current favorite genre to write in. So…in the end…I don’t know the answer. Ask me something else.

3. Why do I write what I do?

I get inspired by an idea, or a person I see on the street or at a public place, by a news story that I twist into a fantasy or sci fi aspect. Andre Norton and I used to chat once a month, talking about where ideas come from. She was always asking … what if … and what if after that … and what if then? So I’ll here about something like a water shortage in California, and I’ll think … what if the shortage is caused by demons living in the San Andreas fault and their sapping water from rivers and lakes and pulling it from the atmosphere. Or maybe I’ll look at a stack of Christmas cards I’ve received and say “how could I turn them into a story”…which is what I’m doing right now.

4. How does my writing process work?

I outline. For a short story, it’s a few random thoughts or points. For a novel, its pages and pages, a chapter-by-chapter outline, sometimes with dialogue thrown in. The more I outline, the easier it is for the book to write. I start work around 7:30 every morning, take a 10 a.m. break to toss tennis balls for my big dog, write, take a noon break to toss tennis balls, write, take a 2 p.m. break to toss tennis balls, write, then stop for the day about dinner time. I look at it as a regular full-time job…with tennis ball breaks added for good measure…nice to get out of the chair, ya know.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Neeta Lyffe, Zombie Exterminator Audiobook Giveaway

I was a bad author in 2014.

Last summer, Damnation Books published my novel, Neeta Lyffe, Zombie Exterminator as an audiobook. They hired award-winning reader, Becky Geist (, and she and I had great fun discussing voices and background noises. The scene where Neeta is watching Ted with his flamethrower and hearing “Unchained Melody” in her head is a scream. Becky timed the narrative perfectly! We re-did the cover art, with my sister, Gina Koske posing with a Lyffe-Undeath tramp tattoo, a chainsaw, and kitchen gloves as she takes on the shambling undead. The finished product is a thing of beauty, and my publisher gave me TWELVE codes for downloads.

And I did nothing with them.

Look at this great cover! And I didn't tell the world? I am so ashamed!
I can apologize, and I really am sorry, Kim! I can say, “I was busy,” and I was, but who isn’t? I could give any number of excuses. But instead, I’d rather say

Neeta Lyffe Giveaway Time!

Here’s how we’re going to do this: I am giving away five copies: one on this blog, two via Facebook and two via Twitter. You can have a chance on all three, but here’s what you need to do before Jan 31:

For the Blog: Comment below about how you would kill a zombie using an everyday item. (I’ll try to incorporate some into the next story and credit you as well.)

For Facebook: Post  one or more of the following on your pages. Each post is an entry, and feel free to post more than once (but only once a day). Be sure to tag me so I know you did it:
  • Napalm Sticks to Zombies! Get Neeta Lyffe, Zombie Exterminator on audiobook. Purchase at or join the contest to win one. Contest details at (Tagging Karina Fabian)
  • “A fun romp through the zombie genre!” Neeta Lyffe, Zombie Exterminator is on audiobook. Purchase at or join the contest to win one. Contest details at (Tagging Karina Fabian)
  • The Zombie Apocalypse Meets Reality TV! Get Neeta Lyffe, Zombie Exterminator on audiobook. Purchase at or join the contest to win one. Contest details at (Tagging Karina Fabian)
  • Want to win one of the funniest zombie books ever? Neeta Lyffe, Zombie Exterminator is on audiobook and Karina Fabian is giving away copies. Repost this for a chance to win. (Tag Karina). Or go for the sure thing and buy it at

For Twitter: Tweet any of the following. Each tweet is an entry, and feel free to post more than once (but only once a day). Be sure to include #NLZE is included.
  • Napalm Sticks to Zombies! Neeta Lyffe, Zombie Exterminator on audiobook at #NLZE RT for a chance to win a copy.
  • A fun romp through the zombie genre! Neeta Lyffe, Zombie Exterminator on audiobook at #NLZE RT to enter to win a copy.
  • The Zombie Apocalypse Meets Reality TV! Neeta Lyffe, Zombie Exterminator on audiobook #NLZE RT to enter to win a copy.
Reviewers: If you review horror books and want a copy for review, please contact me at

I have a wonderful publisher and a terrific voice artist. Won’t you help me make it up to them for not promoting this great book sooner? Thanks!

Baby Shoes Kickstarter and #zombies!

Get in on a unique Kickstarter project! - See the Baby Shoes Flash Fiction Anthology Kickstarter!

The Baby Shoes Flash Fiction Anthology features 100 stories from 100 authors.

The Kickstarter hopes to raise $1800 - and ends FEB 9 - 9:17 pm central time.

It features assorted stories under 1,000 words.

Oh, yes, those zombies... well, in my story, "Second Chances," the  "crazy hoarder" lady has the last laugh when the Z-apocalypse hits. She has plenty to live on, but one worry - what happened at the day care? Her discovery results in, yes, "Second Chances."

It's a story with #zombies and heart.  (Not what you think!)

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Top 10 Tuesday: Books To Read

It's another TOP TEN TUESDAY over at

Today's Theme: 

January 13: Top Ten 2014 Releases I Meant To Read But Didn't Get To

I am making my way through some books, but I have a terrible habit of reading several at once. Some I finish really quick if I get into them. Some I skip back and forth. 

Here is a condensed version of a few books I'm reading and/or want to read but didn't - yet (in no particular order).

A pattern - I seem to be drawn to books with creepy old photos and... there is something about asylums...

  1. Asylum (reading it now) 

2. Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children (Miss Peregrine's Peculiar Children)

3. Something  I just came across - The Lives They Left Behind: Suitcases from a State Hospital Attic

4. Since I seem to be on a theme here, I came across this account by Nellie Bly, one of the top female journalists of the 19th century who faked madness to cover the asylum from the inside. Ten Days in a Mad-House

5. There is also something fascinating, sad, and intriguing about looking into the ruins of buildings, especially those where the hopeless were sent. Now the buildings also are without hope. Asylum: Inside the Closed World of State Mental Hospitals

6.  This fascinated me when I heard about the story of Huguette Clark, an elderly heiress from the wealthy past who was so rich she had empty mansions all over. It's a world that you only read about in books and is now fading into history as these octogenarians die. Sad and intriguing. I especially wanted to find out more about her extensive dolls and dollhouse collection.
Empty Mansions: The Mysterious Life of Huguette Clark and the Spending of a Great American Fortune

Monday, January 12, 2015

Working on... A #Zombie Story with Dogs

What else, right? 

Actually I am working on several things, but I decided to concentrate on finishing a story featuring my part-#zombie girl Becca, and her cousin, Carm, who are the main characters in my book, GIRL Z: My Life as a Teenage Zombie.

 In this yet-to-be-named story, the Z attacks are over, society is getting back to normal - kind of - except for Becca's coping with her own problems, and the occasional full zombie that hasn't been caught yet and makes an appearance. 

Becca also has overcome her fear of dogs via a cute little white German Shepherd pup she names Fluffy. Then when two zombies appear at the house and chaos ensues, the puppy runs off and vanishes. Carm and Becca then learn a lot of dogs are disappearing and they are determined to find out why as they search for Fluffy...

(Stay tuned for details!)

Can't imagine where I got inspiration from, huh? :)

In the meantime....

  You can still read about my part-zombie girl, Becca, in GIRL Z: My Life as a Teenage Zombie   

           What happens when you're 16 and turn part-zombie? Can things be worse??