Archive for May, 2010
What Stace had to say on Saturday, May 29th, 2010
The first three chapters of UNHOLY MAGIC will be up on the book’s page by Monday, but until then I thought it would be fun to post a special sneak-peek excerpt.
Keep in mind that although the excerpt isn’t continuity-spoilery, it is a bit plot-spoilery, pretty much by definition. But I didn’t want to post something from the first three chapters, because then this wouldn’t be special, would it?
This is a Sneak Peek excerpt, so I will probably delete it first thing Tuesday morning. Enjoy!
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What Stace had to say on Friday, May 28th, 2010
First, yesterday was the official release day for UNHOLY GHOSTS in Poland!
Witamy polskich czytelników! I z pewno?ci? nadziej?, ?e jeste? korzystaj?cych NIESWIETE DUCHY! Przykro mi, ale nie w j?zyku polskim, ale robi? mój najlepszy z t?umaczy online.
Nie wiem od daty dopuszczenia do NIESWIETE MAGIA (My?l?, ?e), ale mam nadziej?, wynika, USA / Wielka Brytania dat, które b?d? na pocz?tku lipca.
Jestem zachwycony które zostan? opublikowane w Polska!
O to strona ksi??ki na stronie Wydawnictwa Amber je?li chcesz je zobaczy?.
And I certainly hope that looks okay and I don’t get dinged by WordPress for all of the Polish letters.
Of course, I HAD a blog topic, and it was a good one, too, but I can’t for the life of me remember now what it was. I hate it when that happens. Oh! POV, that was it.
On Tuesday I went to a couple of bookstores in the area; three, actually. And I got to chatting at my local B&N with a bookseller I hadn’t met before about urban fantasy in general and POV in particular, because he shares my preference for third person POV, especially a tight, deep third. (Because most men love tight, deep things, you know. Ba-dum-bum. Oh, the hilarity never stops here!)
Anyway. We both felt the same way about first-person, which is that it’s distancing. And I know that sort of goes against the popular perception of it; I think most first fans–at least the ones I’ve spoken to–feel that it puts them closer to the action.
For me, reading a book written in first person doesn’t feel like I’m experiencing it. It feels like I’m sitting in a restaurant or something, listening to someone tell me a story that happened to them. Do you know what I mean? I feel a step further removed from the action, like I’m somewhere safe and I’m just being told a story.
Yesterday I saw a reader comment somewhere–can’t remember where–that they have a hard time truly feeling suspense with a first POV book, because obviously the narrator survived. I don’t necessarily disagree with this, but I don’t necessarily agree either; yes, we know they’re telling us the story, but for all we know they’re dead and telling us from the afterlife, right?
And of course it depends on the story and character and writer. I generally don’t like books written in present tense at all, and have sadly put down a few books I really, really wanted to read and love because I just couldn’t get past the present tense. But then there are books like Angela Huth’s WIVES OF THE FISHERMEN, which I absolutely adore, and which I honestly didn’t even realize was written in present tense until I was over halfway through it. Yes, it’s possible that this is in part due to the fact that the book contains a lot of flashback/memory scenes, which are in past tense, but it’s also because it’s just such a great book and so perfectly written.
Anyway. With a tight third I feel like I’m actually in the story, in the character’s head. I’m not being told a story, I’m seeing it. That’s why I like to read third best, and why I like to write third best. How about you?
And we have more reviews, of course!
The Book Lovers gives it 4.5 bookies:
The pace of the book was wonderful and the story gripped me ASAP and didn’t let me go till the last word. I loved how Ms. Kane shows us that looks are deceiving and we should never judge a person just with taking one glance at him or her. A highly recommended read not only for Urban Fantasy lovers, but for anyone who likes a good story.
There is also an interview & giveaway chat with me at Book Lovers, so go check that out as well if you’re so inclined.
Jessica at A GREAT Read says:
Finished Stacia Kane’s Unholy Ghosts today, her debut in her new series and it was seriously a wild ride! It was dark, gritty, edgy and enthralling from the first chapter!
This weekend I plan to get the PDF of the first three chapter of UNHOLY MAGIC up on the site; I’m doing some general site updates as well (or rather, the fabulous Frauke at Croco Designs is, and those should be completed soon; UNHOLY MAGIC will finally get its own page, with the back cover copy and everything, I’ll finally get my sidebar links updated (there are several things I was able to figure out how to do on my own here but the sidebar links seem to be in a separate file or something, I don’t know, but I need help, lol), we’re going to add some more fun stuff to, well, the Fun Stuff page, and maybe a few other things here and there.
Which is another question. What sorts of things would you guys like to see? The recipe downloads are pretty popular (now that they’re working, lol, because apparently they weren’t for a while), and I plan to add a few more, but of course there’s no cooking in the Downside books the way there is in the Demons books.
So what do you think is fun extra content? Or do you really not care?
Have a great weekend everyone; it’s a long weekend, isn’t it?
I may post an UNHOLY MAGIC excerpt here on the blog later…
What Stace had to say on Wednesday, May 26th, 2010
I completely forgot yesterday to mention the soundtracks, but we’ll get to that in a second. First I have two new reviews to share!
K.M. Ruiz over at Ink and Coffee says (among many other things):
For me, Stacia Kane brought UF back to its gritty, noir-ish roots where the city and the world is as much a character as the protagonist…In sum, UNHOLY GHOSTS is part creepy horror, part old-school urban fantasy, and completely awesome. I say go out and buy it if it sounds interesting to you, because it’s not like anything you’ve read in a while. Trust me.
Then we have Wendy at The Book Lush, who gives the book 5 Lushes!:
Unholy Ghosts is the first book in Stacia Kane’s new series and absolutely full of win! From the very start, Kane just draws the reader in effortlessly. Chess is unlike any other heroine you’ll ever read about… While I loved Chess, Terrible just stole the show for me. He was my favorite and no matter how much I loved the other characters, I lived for his parts.
Another thing that made Unholy Ghosts a book of never-ending awesomeness for me was the pace… There’s no awkward pauses or drawn-out monologue and that to me is brilliant. I don’t want to have to sigh in boredom or feel like the action overshadows everything else and in this book, neither happens. Unholy Ghosts is the beginning of a new Urban Fantasy series that I think it will be a huge hit. The characters are kick ass and the plot will have you on the edge of your seat. I absolutely recommend it!
Also, I’m very excited to tell you that the book soundtracks are up on iTunes!
See, for those who aren’t aware, music plays a fairly big part in Downside, and in the world of the book in general; punk rock, mostly, which as those of you who’ve been around for a while know was a big part of my life and is still what I generally listen to. Anyway, I mention several bands in the books, and since not all of it is going to be familiar to readers I thought it would be fun to create playlists and put them up, so if anyone wants to they can go ahead and download them.
The playlists for all three of the books are up, but I’m just going to link to the UNHOLY GHOSTS list at the moment, and to the other two as the books are released (but if you can’t wait, of course, feel free to click “other playlists by this user” or whatever the button is).
(And yes, ultimately I want to load all of this and more to Radio Downside, but that is unfortunately going to have to wait until I can afford to set up Radio Downside, which I’d hoped to be able to do back in december but things have just sort of happened. None of that is your problem or concern, of course, as I’ve said before; I’m just explaining why it’s taking so long.)
Anyway. You can check out, and purchase, the UNHOLY GHOSTS soundtrack here, and for those who’re wondering, this is the track listing:
1. SKULLS by the Misfits.
2. ALTERNATIVE ULSTER by Stiff Little Fingers.
3. BLAST OFF by The Sonics
4. 354 by the Devil Dogs
5. I’M TALKING ABOUT YOU by Chuck Berry*
6. COME ON by Chuck Berry*
7. I WANNA BE YOUR DOG by The Stooges
8. KILL THE POOR by the Dead Kennedys
* The Chuck Berry songs are listed on iTunes as being from an album called “The Definitive Collection.” We had to change the album listing to get iTunes to recognize the songs as songs it sells and therefore allow us to upload them, but both songs were in fact ripped from one of the greatest albums of all time, The Great Twenty-Eight. Out of print, sadly, but I got a used copy on Amazon a few years back and cherish it like the precious bundle of awesomeness it is. I love Chuck Berry. No matter what he does with poop.
Anyway, there you go. I’m still hoping to find a way to get these loaded onto Canadian, Australian and UK/Eire iTunes so I can do giveaways for readers there, because I know you guys tend to get screwed a bit when it comes to contests from US authors so I’d like to at least do *something.* (So if you can help with that, please contact me.)
…and that’s it for tonight, I think!
What Stace had to say on Tuesday, May 25th, 2010
…So that’s what I’m doing today.
Today is the official release day for UNHOLY GHOSTS in the US, and I guess it’s being released in the UK/Ireland/Australia/New Zealand as well? Yes, it seems that way. And I’m frankly terrified. Excited and elated and terrified.
We had a couple of new reviews come in, and they’re good ones. Not just, or not necessarily, because they’re positive, although they largely are, but because they’re thoughtful. Because they read the book and really considered it, and really put that consideration into the reviews, and really?
It’s not my place as an author to ask reviewers or readers for shit. It’s not my place to tell them how they should think or feel about my work, or how they should express those feelings. But I won’t deny that it pleases me immensely and makes me feel good when they do put that consideration and thought into their reviews. It’s gratifying, and I appreciate it, and if I could ask for something, that would be what I would ask for.
So first we have Michele Lee’s Book Love:
Unholy Ghosts is a thrilling ride, textured and vivid, a powerhouse of fantasy. Brimming with characters that aren’t quite heroes but aren’t quite bad guys either, it shows the hard core, broke down parts of the world other stories skip over, the dark side of reality that comes not from magic, but from the poor, desperate and disillusioned trying to make it through a hard life.
Seriously? I got a little teary when I saw this one. It was so close to how I think of the books; Michele understood so clearly what I was trying to do and express. It’s absolutely amazing to feel understood like that, and like you’ve truly connected with someone through your work.
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What Stace had to say on Thursday, May 20th, 2010
1. You all know my pal Jackie Kessler, right? Remember her excellent Jezebel books, the HELL series? Which were total sexy fun. Anyway, Jackie’s releasing a NEW Jezzie story on her blog, in installments! FREE SUCCUBUS STORY! It starts here. You don’t want to miss it!
2. I am guest blogging today over at Marta Acosta’s Vampire Wire, about how I created Chess Putnam and giving a little more insight into what kind of character she is and yes, into her addiction. Come read it and comment! One lucky commenter wins a copy of UNHOLY GHOSTS! (But you’re still going to go buy it, right?)
I actually find I’m discussing the drug use in the book quite a bit these days, and there’s a reason for that, same as the reason why I uploaded the first five chapters of the book here.
Yes, of course I want you to read it and decide you can’t wait to read more, and rush to buy the book on Tuesday or pre-order it now, which you are of course perfectly welcome to do. But I also want to make it clear exactly what the book is, and what you’ll find inside. I don’t want there to be any surprises. The back cover copy tells you very clearly that the book is about a drug addict. That is true. She is. Drugs are used in the book(s), quite a bit. If that’s a problem for you don’t buy the book, and I mean that in the nicest possible way. I don’t want you to buy a book you’re not going to like, or that will upset you or make you uncomfortable! I want you to be happy with it, and enjoy it. So please do be aware. The back cover copy isn’t lying to you. It’s there to tell you what you’ll find inside the book. You should pay attention to it, and that goes for all books, really.
One more thing. Remember how I was going to do a little thank-you giveaway, where if you buy UG I’ll send you the first three chapters of UNHOLY MAGIC? Yeah, I figured what the heck. Why go through all that trouble, for both you and me? Instead I’m just going to go ahead and load those first three chapters onto the site, probably next Friday or Saturday. If you are absolutely dying to get the chapters earlier, go ahead and email me anyway, with your overflowing heartwarming praise for UNHOLY GHOSTS, and I’ll send you the chapters. But it’s not necessary. I want to give you guys a sneak peek, so that’s what I’m going to do.
So come hang out with me at Marta’s!
Oh, and tomorrow I’ll be doing an interview at Wicked Lil Pixie’s blog, so make sure you come by and say hello, because I’m giving away a book there too!
What Stace had to say on Tuesday, May 18th, 2010
(This is a long one, guys, so get comfortable.)
I’m sure you’re probably getting sick of seeing my reviews, but I do have another quick one to share. From WickedlilPixie at Writings of a Wicked Book Addict:
Unholy Ghosts is the first book in Stacia Kane’s Downside Series & it was phenomenal! It is one of the most grittiest, in your face Urban Fantasies I’ve ever read & I loved it…If you read one new Urban Fantasy series, make it Unholy Ghosts.
So something I’ve been thinking about for a while, as you guys know, is what urban fantasy truly is as a genre, and where it’s going, and how my books fit into it. (Remember the The Books Are Out There post?
And of course we’re now exactly one week away from the official release date of UNHOLY GHOSTS. And I’m wondering how people will respond to it, whether they’ll love it or hate it, whether the darkness will be too much for them, whether they’ll accept a drug addict as a heroine, all of those things that I worried and wondered about even as I wrote it.
But here’s the thing. I feel like urban fantasy has, as a genre, been somehow relegated to the “Girl” section. It’s been dismissed as “Girl books.” And many guys really do seem to think this way. I’ve seen a lot of them in various places referring to UF as “just paranormal romance with a little more action,” or “hot girl in leather solves mystery, sleeps with paranormal creatures.”
And honestly? I think to some extent that’s true. No, hear me out. Other worlds and paranormal creatures do tend to be a big part of urban fantasy. The heroines often have sex (mine certainly do) and it’s often with paranormal creatures (Megan sleeps with a demon, for example, but in Chess’s world the only paranormal creatures are ghosts, and they don’t really make good bed partners, what with the trying to kill you and all).
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What Stace had to say on Monday, May 17th, 2010
What Stace had to say on Thursday, May 13th, 2010
First, I have a new review to share with you for UNHOLY GHOSTS, from LOCUS magazine:
“Chess is an intriguing character, a powerful Church witch with magic tattoos, but also a serious drug problem… She’s not your usual heroic protagonist, and this isn’t one of your humorous urban fantasies, but rather a lively thriller, full of action and ghostly encounters.”
Next, thanks to everyone who downloaded the 5-chapter sample of UNHOLY GHOSTS, and emailed me or contacted me on Facebook or Twitter to let me know how much you enjoyed it! For those of you who haven’t yet read it, why not? UNHOLY GHOSTS sample (2474) (The link is also permanently up on the UNHOLY GHOSTS page on the site, where the description and blurbs are.
Which brings me to today’s topic (see how neatly that was done?)
A while ago someone asked me in comments about blurbs, and last night I got an email asking about them again, which reminded me that I wanted to blog about them. Keep in mind this is my experience, and my thoughts, as always.
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What Stace had to say on Tuesday, May 11th, 2010
And I’m starting to freak out a little, to be honest. Eep!
So I have some stuff to share with you about UNHOLY GHOSTS, but first, this morning my Faerie had her preschool graduation, which was a big teary deal for Mommy. She’s been going to a Baptist preschool nearby; a Baptist school because A) it’s close; B) it’s not as expensive as most of the other schools; and C) most importantly, when we went to take a look at the place the staff were so friendly and charming and non-judgy, and they were so kind to Faerie, and she liked it so much. I haven’t regretted it once, although I admit it’s a tad weird when she starts asking questions about religion etc. etc. I’m happy for her to learn about religions, though, and about different people believing different things, and the school is seriously fantastic. Her official last day is Friday and I know I’m going to be a gibbering mess.
Aaanyway. Graduation was this morning, and the kids gave a little concert, which is awesome. Awesome not just because, you know, it’s our baby on that stage, but because there’s always that one boy who refuses to play along. At the Christmas concert he just stood and stared at the audience the whole time, leading the hubs and I to invent dialogue for him, such as “I don’t trust you people,” or the classic Buscemi-on-SNL-inspired, “You’re all dead and you don’t even know it.” Today he played along a little more, but when the kids sang how God is watching and knows everything, he stood there arms akimbo rather than doing the hand movement; the rest of the class was happy in the knowledge that God knows everything, but Surly was berating us. Warning us. Informing us that we’re not going to get away with shit, so we shouldn’t even think about it. Surly is awesome.
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What Stace had to say on Friday, May 7th, 2010
Some of you may have heard that the Waxman Agency, a legitimate, highly respected literary agency with an excellent reputation, has decided to open an epublishing imprint of its own. No, you didn’t read that incorrectly. It’s an agency deciding to set up a publishing arm.
This has, as you can imagine, sparked a bit of controversy in the literary world.
I’m going to blog about it, because I feel like I should. But I’m not entirely comfortable doing it, to be honest. I don’t like doing it. I am, to put it mildly, in a bit of an moral dilemma here, and I need to decide if my ethical standards are really that strong, and I’ve decided that they are. I’ve taken a stand on this situation in the past and would be a hypocrite not to do the same again; I’ve presented myself–and worked hard to make myself–someone who helps other writers and offers advice, and I would be a hypocrite not to speak out now.
Here’s the thing. Waxman is, as I said above, and excellent agency. I know a few people–one I consider a good friend–who are repped by Holly Root there. Holly is a fantastic agent. Her clients love her, and she does a great job for them. And up until yesterday I had no compunction at all recommending her to any of my friends who were looking for representation.
But I can’t do that anymore, and that makes me sad.
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