naomi_jay: (Black dog?)
So the DARK HUNT tour is nearly over. Sob! I've got one more official guest blog to do (for the wonderful Quinn Smythwood; check out his free Halloween read - it's awesome!) and there may be some extra posts here and there throughout November, but that will be it. Luckily, as [livejournal.com profile] dwgjust reminded me on Twitter, DARK HUNT itself will be available for many years to come!

You can still go and comment on any of the blogs throughout the tour and be in with a chance of winning (among other things) T-shirts and ebooks. Behold!


And remember that everyone who comments anywhere is entitled to a free copy of SILVER KISS - we'll be sending out Smashwords vouchers for those at the end of the tour.

If you missed any of the tour stops, the schedule is here on the Queered Fiction site. I've been rambling on about my favourite fictional werewolf girls, Ayla's own fictional werewolf heroine, Katrina Pagan, my reasons for setting this book in Paris, some of my hopes for the future of the Urban Wolf books...and lots of other stuff too, so go and take a look, leave a comment, and you are guaranteed to win something brilliant. I promise you.

naomi_jay: (sparklethulhu)
October is nearly over and November is just a few days away, so it's your last chance to sign-up for Anti-Nano!

If you're new to the Anti-Nano family, here's the gist of it:

If you love the idea of Nanowrimo but know 50k is an impractical target for you, never fear! Join the cult, and dedicate November to writing as much (or as little) as you want in the company of like-minded writers. We'll be doing bi-weekly check-ins throughout November (Mondays and Fridays), and once a week there'll be excerpt postings (Wednesdays).

(I'd like to add that if you're doing Nanowrimo but still want to stop by the Anti-Nano community and share your progress, you're very welcome!).

If you want to participate, head over to [livejournal.com profile] squidathon and join up. This is now HQ for Anti-Nano, so go and make yourselves at home, read this post to see what we're all about, and I'll see you in November for hardcore (but self-governed) writing action.

Oh, and Happy Halloween!


naomi_jay: (and now this)
*It's like Mega Shark v Giant Octopus but with fewer tentacles.

I have a real thing about private eyes. I even considered being one for a while as a teenager, but then I realised it might involve some degree of physical fitness and decided to stick with the writing plan. But my obsession didn't stop. If anything, it was exacerbated by the discovery of my older brother's computer game, Under A Killing Moon, featuring post-apocalyptic PI, Tex Murphy.

Look at Tex. I loved Tex. I wanted to be his long-suffering dame.

I played this computer game repeatedly until our computer broke (not because of me, probably). And that pretty much did it for me. PIs were awesome forever and if I couldn't be one, I'd write about one.

And this is where Ethan Banning and Shannon Ryan come into it. They're both private eyes but they're very different sorts of private eye. Observe:

Ethan is my personal stereotypical idea of a PI. He's always broke, he drinks and smokes way too much, he's usually in some terrible scrape, and he badly needs to shave some time. He's hopeless with women. His cases are gritty - murder, missing persons, drugs. He's full of (what he thinks is) witty banter. He occupies a depressed city where something seedy is always going on. He's not unlike Tex, actually - down and out but desperately trying to get lucky.

Shannon, on the other hand, is probably closer to the reality. She works on cheating spouses, tax evasion, corporate and legal matters. Unlike Ethan, she lives a pretty clean life and about gets by financially. She's essentially a nosy character - show her a closed door and she'll have to know what's on the other side. She's also the kind of person who always needs an answer. If you ask her something and she doesn't know the answer, she'll go find it. Ethan would probably just make something up.

Which is not to say Ethan is lazy or stupid, because he's not. He's just used to being the underdog (as opposed to living with the underdog, like Shannon). And he also just likes messing with people if he can get away with it. Keeps them guessing and assuming he's...well, stupid and lazy. Whereas Shannon likes people to know exactly how clever and competent she is, as it usually pulls the rug out from under them.

They're both pretty pragmatic people at heart, and neither is afraid to make tough decisions. I think Ethan's a lot more pessimistic than Shannon though, and more than likely hungover 90% of the time. Honestly, if I was going to hire one of them to work a case for me, it would be Shannon. If I just wanted to hang out with someone and get into some wacky scrapes, I'd pick Ethan.

So, this post isn't part of the DARK HUNT blog tour, but let's have some fun anyway! Tell me who'd you rather have on your case - Ethan or Shannon, and I'll send you an ebook featuring the character of your choice.


naomi_jay: (ethan)
We interrupt the DARK HUNT blog tour (although that is still going on and there is still loads of chances to win awesome free stuff) to bring you an important Ethan Banning-related announcement.

GONE TO THE DOGS, an Ethan Banning short story, is now available on Amazon US and UK. Huzzahs! And of course, it's at a low, low price, because money into Ethan does not go.


After PI Ethan Banning is kicked out of his favourite bar, he figures the night can't get much worse. Naturally, he's wrong. A trip to the dog track, a meeting with a wannabe femme fatale, and a revenge scheme gone wrong leave Ethan high, dry, and depressingly sober. And that's after he's been mistaken for a hobo...

Some random facts about GONE TO THE DOGS:

1. As with UNGRATEFUL DEAD, this is set before the events of AFTERLIFE, so you can read it without having read any other Shoregrave books.

2. Unlike UNGRATEFUL DEAD, there are no paranormal elements in this story at all. It's just Ethan, his wit, and a bunch of greyhounds.

3. Nothing bad happens to any dogs.
naomi_jay: (wolves in snow)
First, the Anti-Nano news. we have a community to bring together Anti-Nano, Winter-Write-A-Thon, and Springathon, so if you're interested in any or all of these awesome writing comms, check out [livejournal.com profile] squidathon and sign up! Anti-Nano is just around the corner after all.

Now, DARK HUNT. If you've missed any of the blog tour stops so far, I've been at:

Whipped Cream
My own blog
Sara's Urban Fantasy Reads
Greg Chapman's Darkscrybe blog

You can comment on any or all of these blogs to get your free Smashwords coupon for SILVER KISS, and to be in with a chance of winning masses of cool stuff at the end of the tour! Go say hello so I don't feel lonely ^_^

My ebooks (not just the Urban Wolf ones but all of them) are now up on Kindlegraph, where you can get them autographed by me! So if you'd like a personal message from me in any or all of your Naomi Clark books, check that out. It's pretty cool!

The blog tour continues until November 1st (and possibly beyond!) so please join me along the way. And if you don't yet have your free copy of A Wolf in Girl's Clothing, just leave me a comment here (or at my mirrored Blogger blog if you prefer - they both count!).
naomi_jay: (moon in clouds)
As the title may imply, this week's Writerly Wednesday is all about DARK HUNT. We'll get to the meat of the post shortly, but first, remember the fabulous prizes I've been talking about? The t-shirts, ebooks, postcards, tarot readings, and other exciting things you can win by following the blog tour and commenting on my posts? Well, we've added another one to the mix.

Want to read DARK HUNT but haven't read SILVER KISS yet? Don't worry! Everyone who comments on one of the blog tour posts will receive a Smashwords voucher to download SILVER KISS for free.

For FREE.

So you can read the book that's been called "compelling" and "gritty," and see what lead Ayla and Shannon to Paris for DARK HUNT. Now, speaking of Paris...


"France has a long, dark history with wolves, you know? People do not forget." - Clemence, DARK HUNT.

Once I decided I was going to set book two of the Urban Wolf series in Paris, I knew I wanted to have Ayla and Shannon explore a little of French history. Specifically its werewolf history. In the Middle Ages, when paranoia about witchcraft ran rampant over Europe, France experienced more than its fare share of werewolf hysteria. In 1603 Jean Grenier terrorised St Sever, Gascony, killing many young children. Villagers blamed wolves. Marguerite Poirier, a thirteen-year-old who survived Grenier's savage attack described a wolf-like beast as her assailant. Grenier himself, when caught, boasted of taking a wolf's shape to hunt and eat young children.

How could I not weave that kind of history into my book?

"Stupid thing was, back then wolves were still in hiding," I complained, staring at Grenier's beastly face. "Grenier was probably just a random madman, but because of people like him, we get lumbered with the child-eating reputation." - Ayla, DARK HUNT.

After he was caught and arrested, Grenier confessed to every killing and claimed to be a werewolf. In Ayla's world, that's a very real possibility. In the Urban Wolf universe, werewolves have only been living out in the open since World War I, so every tale of witchcraft, vampirism, and werewolfism...could well be true.

In 1572, Gilles Garnier stole children from the French town of Dole to feed his new wife. Authorities issued an edict encouraging people to find and kill the werewolf. When he was caught, Gilles claimed he used a magic ointment to take on wolf-shape. He was found guilty of witchcraft and lycanthropy and burned at the stake.

Going further back, there are numerous French folk tales and legends revolving around werewolves, from the Werewolf of Auvergne to the Wolves of Paris. In the Urban Wolf world, these might not be legends. They might be true. And if werewolves are real, who knows what else is lurking in the dark? You'll have to read DARK HUNT to find out ^_^

"Some lupine historians thought that once there'd been all kinds of supernatural creatures in the world, not just wolves. Fairies, vampires, other species of shifters...and all wiped out in the Middle Ages." - Ayla, DARK HUNT


(Artwork very kindly provided by [livejournal.com profile] dwg. And if you like this, you'll love the DARK HUNT postcards we have!)

naomi_jay: (goldenwolf)
In fact, today is very, very specific because it's DARK HUNT release day!



I'm going to be pimping Urban Wolf Book Two all over Twitter tonight, so if you don't follow me, maybe you'd like to? @naomi_jay.

There's going to be giveaways - ebooks, postcards, t-shirts, and all sorts of goodies! I'm doing a blog tour:


And there's going to be chances to win loads of cool stuff at every stop on the tour, plus a grand finale hamper of wonder!

There's also a free short story for anyone who wants it! Ever wonder how Ayla and Shannon first met? Get your copy of A Wolf in Girl's Clothing to find out. Just leave me a comment here, tweet at me, or give me a shout on my Facebook page and let me know you'd like a copy!

You can keep up with all the DARK HUNT goodness at Queered Fiction here, including places to get hold of print and e-copies!
naomi_jay: (sparkly moon)
It was a good week for:

Cryptozoology! A paleontologist in Massachusetts thinks he's found the lair of the kraken. Interesting side note - Lovecraft's Arkham is in Massachusetts, and the kraken is estimated to be at least 100 feet long. Is it too great a leap to assume this kraken is Cthulhu and this paleontologist is somehow involved in a cult dedicated to rising Cthulhu from R'lyeh?

Probably!

Also, Siberian officials confirm the existence of the Yeti. They've found his supposed bed and stuff he uses to mark his territory. See, this is why we've had no luck finding them in the Himalayas. They all moved to Siberia. If they do actually create a centre dedicated to Yeti science, I am so signing up.

Bad week for:

Women. Topeka, Kansas decriminalised misdemeanor domestic violence this week, due to budget cuts apparently. Nice to know you can put a value on human life... And then there's Personhood USA's attempts to get the Personhood Amendment passed in Mississippi, which would effectively ban abortion and most forms of birth control, and make women who miscarry liable to criminal investigation. Wow. I don't even know what to say. This is just all so disturbing.

ETA - Topeka DA says he will prosecute domestic violence cases after all.

Next week:

So let's end on a light note, shall we? As you may have detected if you saw my earlier blog post, Monday 17th October is the release date for DARK HUNT! OMG! We're planning a whole ton of fun stuff for the next few weeks, so stay tuned! But in the mean time, here's the cover and blurb to get you all excited.


Ayla Hammond is taking on Paris. 

Hoping for a romantic getaway in the City of Lights with her girlfriend, Shannon, she finds a city under the dark thrall of Le Monstre

Getting caught up in mystery and murder was the last thing Ayla and Shannon expected in the City of Love, but as the body count grows and tension rises between Parisian werewolves and humans they find themselves stalked by an unknown terror. 

What is Le Monstre and why does it make Ayla's wolf want to turn tail and run? Can it be stopped before they become its next victims?



naomi_jay: (dragon girl)
The release of THE NECROMANCER'S APPRENTICE is sneaking up on me fast, so I thought this week's Writerly Wednesday could be best used for some pimpage. So here you go! The opening paragraph in all it's opening glory:



"Evanthe shivered as the icy wind ripped through the graveyard, tossing dead leaves and grave dirt against her, whipping her hair into her eyes. The half moon was hidden by storm clouds, casting the graveyard in near perfect darkness, so Evanthe was forced to grope her way blindly from one crumbling, mossy headstone to the next. Her torch battery had died almost as soon as she flicked it on, leaving her feeling lost and faintly ridiculous."
naomi_jay: (cubewich)
(I never promised these blogs would be intellectual.)

1. What if Dr Suess wrote The Call of Cthulhu? Dude. I would have been all over this as a kid. I'm pretty much all over it as an adult.

2. Katy Perry - ET



I don't care for much of her music, but I love this song. I especially love this remix:



And, I don't know, there's just something I really like about Katy Perry. She's like a cartoon character.

3. The Yogscast. I don't play Minecraft, but Kyle does and therefore I blame him entirely for my current obsession with the Yogscasts. We spent all day yesterday watching this, and then we went to bed and watched some more like the freaking grownups we are.

4. Toffee apple cider.


I don't like cider when it tastes like cider. I love it when it tastes like toffee apples (although carbonated drinks don't agree with me, so I can only manage about one bottle a week, which is frankly probably more than enough given the amount of sugar in the stuff).

5. Editing! I edited an upcoming novella for Damnation Books called The Noctuary and it was amazing! I got in a bit of a fit over the weekend about writers who want to be published, rather than wanting to write, but The Noctuary helped me get over that. It's a haunting, atmospheric beauty, and when it's available to buy, I will be pimping the hell out of it.

naomi_jay: (bloop)
So I've been washing my face with honey this week. I know! I would never have thought of it if Stacia Kane hadn't tweeted a link to Crunchy Betty's website. Now I'm obsessed. Seriously! My skin is already so much better than it was on Monday. I haven't had to use any mosturizer or other skin products, and my skin is all soft and healthy-looking. I've just been doing it in the mornings so far, as you're not supposed to use it on dirty/made-up skin. I don't wear much make-up, but I prefer to take it off with a cleansing wipe, so. I'm considering picking up some baking soda, as you can use that with honey as make-up remover. I'm spending way too much time on the Crunchy Betty site now. I'm getting a real interest in the whole sustainable living/natural beauty stuff, and her articles are just right for me - simple, inexpensive, and involving a minimum of effort. So yeah! I absolutely recommend washing your face with honey. I've struggled for years to find the right combination of goopy products to keep my skin looking nice and healthy, and all I had to do was slather myself in honey.

In other news, like all the best people this week, I have made myself a squid!



His name is Squamous and he just escaped a killer whale, apparently. Good for him!

In other other news, The Human Centipede 2 has had it's UK ban rescinded. It'll be classified as an 18 after 2 minutes and 37 seconds of cuts. I'm really enjoying the review that claims it's ban would have saved UK viewers from "a shockingly boring film" and that "nobody outside of a world-class psychiatrist could explain what Human Centipede 2 is." Of course, I am reserving judgement until I've seen it (our friend James is over in the UK at the end of October and we've decided since we watched the original with him last year, we should save the sequel for him too. Because we care), but based on the reviews I've read, it seems like the problems of the original are still present here: namely, all Tom Six has is his central concept and he lacks the balls to actually deliver the grossness and ick factor he purports to be presenting. We shall see.
naomi_jay: (pen and paper)

This picture is a pretty accurate representation of how I felt on Sunday when I finished Night Breed's first draft. It clocked in at just over 72k, which means between September 1st and October 2nd I wrote just over 60k. Oh man. I don't want to do that again. I mean, it's nice to know I can, but forget that. I want to be able to sleep and watch Thundercats too.

I've sent the draft to my editor at QueeredFiction and am looking forwards to not thinking about it for a while. I'm not sure how well I've pulled off what I wanted, and I already know the emotional intensity needs amping up, especially towards the end. But it's a book, dammit, and it wasn't a book a month ago, so that's something.

(By the way, I do need beta readers, so if anyone's up for reading through, drop me a line. No pressure, no hurry).

So! What's next? Well, Anti-Nano sign-up has begun. If you're interested, go take a look and join the cult fun. I loved doing this last year and it spawned a year-round write-a-thon which has been awesome to be part of. In a change from last year, when I ran Anti-Nano from my LJ, I'm going to start a master community this year, which will incorporate Anti-Nano, Winter-Write-a-Thon, and Springathon. So if you want to join in one or any of those things, stay tuned!

In other news, Fictional Candy has reviewed AFTERLIFE and given Nicomedes some love. He needs the most love. I decided last week that since I'll be working on Halflife for Anti-Nano, I'd try to garner some fresh reviews for AFTERLIFE. You know, so people know what I'm talking about and stuff. And maybe buy AFTERLIFE and get excited about Halflife. So hopefully there'll be some more nice reviews coming soon!

In other other news, it's a little over a month until THE NECROMANCER'S APPRENTICE is released! Eep. I'm working on some promo ideas for this. I'm a bit worried it'll be an odd one to work with. It's a short novella (just over 20k), it's a sweet romance (kissing but nothing more), and I haven't found many review sites that will look at sweet romances, especially sweet paranormals. I did find quite a mighty list of review sites here, though, so I'll plough through and see what comes up. I'd like to do some giveaways and prizes and fun stuff, too, possibly involving Bud Ducks. I just like Bud Ducks, okay? And you should like them too. Look at them!

naomi_jay: (wayward son)
So I ate a tub of Phish Food last night to celebrate finishing Night Breed, and now I'm off work sick. Coincidence? I think not. Anyway, this means Fergus and I have lots of time to scour the internet for stuff, and this is what I found:



It's Escher! In Lego! For comparison, here's the original:



I think that's pretty damn awesome. It makes me feel slightly better about the whole ice cream thing.
naomi_jay: (hello cthulhu)


I think most people who read my journal know the rules, but for any newcomers, here they are again:

If you love the idea of Nanowrimo but know 50k is an impractical target for you, never fear! Join the cult, and dedicate November to writing as much (or as little) as you want in the company of like-minded writers.

Just leave a comment here stating your goal and what you'll be working on. I'll be doing bi-weekly check-ins throughout November (Mondays and Fridays), and once a week there'll be excerpt postings here (Wednesdays). You can sign-up any time throughout October.

I'll be working on Halflife, the next Shoregrave book, in November, and if progress goes well I'd also like to start on Undertow, the next Ethan Banning story.

Who's with me?
naomi_jay: (ZP - Shuggoth)
But I like to express my thoughts in blog form.

So I've been mulling over the idea of having a blogging schedule, but I've struggled to come up with anything other than Wednesday = Writerly stuff because I enjoy alliteration. Then I panicked over not being able to think of cool alliterative things for the rest of the week. Then I decided I was overthinking it and that normal people probably don't worry about whether things fit rhetorical arrangements.

Anyway. So I think I'm going to experiment with this in October and see if I like it. So here's what I came up with:

Random Monday. Sometimes I find things, like Lovecraft ambigrams or pictures of wrestlers elbow-dropping Jesus and I just feel like everyone else needs to see them too. Mondays are going to be those days. So for those of you who keep finding things to do with The Human Centipede to show me, you will now have a dedicated day for those things.

Writerly Wednesday. Sometimes this is going to be snippets of work, reviews for my books if I have any, sometimes just general writerly updates on what I'm doing and how it's going, and sometimes I might get off my ass and write some intellectual stuff. Who knows?

Friday Miscellany. Don't be fooled! It's not like Random Monday. It happens on Fridays. Basically this'll be a catch-up blog for the week and will cover anything I feel is important, like hilarious things the snakes have done (like fall out of their tanks) or whatever. 

I didn't think of anything satisfactory or worthwhile for Tuesday and Thursdays. If I'm doing blog tours, guest posts, etc, I might post them as and when they arise, but otherwise I'm going to try this scheduling business for a while.
naomi_jay: (hello cthulhu)
How amazing are these? I found them last night whilst browsing for pictures of Cthulhu. We decided this one should probably be Kyle's next tattoo:



I really love the Azathoth one too:

naomi_jay: (Skeletor and Yogi)
And AFTERLIFE is one of the books up for grabs (alongside some awesome titles like My Life As A Whitetrash Zombie). You should check it out!

(Also Bastard thinks DEMONISED is sick and twisted. I will add that to my business card).
naomi_jay: (by the sea)
It's all right here.

I really love reviews that give me new insights into my stories and give me something to think about for tuture ones. Since this review does both, I'm pretty chuffed about it!

"Afterlife is darker than your usual urban fantasy, quite gritty at times with a noir ambiance. It has a little bit of everything, some mystery, some action, and even some romance."


I think Bastard Books are going to be reviewing DEMONISED shortly, so I'm looking forward to seeing what they have to say about Ethan!
naomi_jay: (penis)
Yeah, I was excited. So what? Ragging on the original film has become my second favourite hobby (after collecting pictures of Cthulhu) and the thought of a whole new awful film to rag on fills me with gooey chocolate joy. So!

Read more... )

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