Definition of gothic novel

A girl and a house.

My friend Sharon laid that one on me at lunch a week or so ago. It’s perfect. It’s so true. We reminisced over Amaya’s Taco Village enchiladas verdes about Victoria Holt and all the wonderful gothic novels of yore. The cover design always had a girl…and a house. The girl is running from the house, waves are crashing on the cliffs, and the house looms in the background.

A girl and a house.

I loved those books.

I have such exciting news about Lady of Temia and I can’t tell you yet. Well except this — Lady of Temia has been renamed The Crow God’s Girl. And the cover is luscious and gorgeous. I can’t wait to show it off to everyone. And The Crow God’s Girl is going to be available for purchase in a few short months.

Did I mention that the cover is gorgeous? Just wait til you see it.

Apollo Con preparations

I’m pulling things together for Apollo Con this weekend. I’ve got the workshop manuscripts ready to go, and I’ve put the manuscripts on the Kindle for my reading. I’m taking both Lady of Temia (planning to read from chapter 4) and if there’s time, I will read a little bit from The Unexpected Miss Bennet.

Here’s my schedule (my commentary in parentheses); if you are in the Houston area, hope to see you there.


6 pm. Out of the Basement: Fan stereotypes (hee!)

9 pm. YA Heroines: The joys of having a spine

9 am Рnoon. Workshop  (yay!)

3 pm. Reading, shared with Rhonda Eudaly

4 pm. Darkness in YA: Depravity or Reality? (they must have read my blog and/or the Wall Street Journal)


10 am Left Behind:  The Scientific Wasteland

Noon: The Next Generation: How We Raise Tomorrow’s Fans (I have OPINIONS on this)


Catching up on my reading

With Lady of Temia complete and off to the editor, I have had time to catch up on my reading. Well, not the New Yorkers or the Atlantic. I’m only one person; there’s only so much I can do.

So. Books. Since just about everyone I know has had a book out from Nightshade this year, I’ve basically dropped most of my money there.

Never Knew Another by JM McDermott.
Demons walk in Dogsland, and stalker shapeshifter priests go after them. But the demons are human, and excruciatingly vulnerable, even though they spread disease and death, and they are wholly sympathetic. One doesn’t like a JM McDermott book, but it’s not meant to be liked. Liking is for sissies, and this book isn’t. Beautifully written as always.

Of Blood and Honey by Stina Leicht.
1970s Northern Ireland, the Belfast punk scene, and the Good Folk combine in a rough and tumble novel. Gripping, hyper-real, dirty, as in you can feel the dirt of the city streets that Leicht describes.

The Cloud Roads by Martha Wells.
I loved this book. This has Wells’ signature worldbuilding and wholly real character development, and her wry voice shines through. I can’t even explain how real the world felt, in which each race and city and culture had such well-drawn back story that they lived on even outside the main plot. My favorite was the city on the wheel that slowly turned…Wells could draw on the world she has created for all the rest of her novels and never run out.

Revolution World, by Katy Stauber.
The post-apocalypse has come and it’s pretty cheerful. Okay, Homeland Security are a bunch of douchebags, but the message that science saves and true love conquers all is darn convincing. I wanted to go there.

Not Nightshade, but Tor:

Deathless, by Catherynne Valente.
A Russian fairytale and the Siege of Leningrad. Beautifully written and un-put-down-able. You know how in the UK they bet on the Booker Prize? Well, I will bet that Valente wins the Nebula for this book.