SNOWED Excerpt: Meet Charity Jones

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Meet Charity Jones, An Excerpt from SNOWED

We’re celebrating Maria Alexander’s birthday by giving YOU a present, please enjoy this SNOWED excerpt:

I open my eyes the next morning to the sight of Mr. Spotty’s yellow oval eyes. Mr. Spotty’s grounded because I used his catapult arm to throw rocks at Charles. I didn’t mean to hurt him. He was hiding in the bushes with his friends smoking pot. I just wanted to startle them, not take a hunk of flesh out of my brother’s forehead.

Although, I’m kinda glad I did.

The other two robots aren’t grounded, just temporarily decommissioned as I work on a new, far more sophisticated robot. Her name is Les Femmes Nikitas and she flies. In three parts. She could seriously wreck the house — even the garage — so I only test her outside.

I claim the bathroom before the boys can. As I brush my teeth, I glower at my ridiculous hair in the mirror. My dad is black. My mom is a ginger. My hair is doomed. By the time I’m out of the shower, Charles is banging on the bathroom door.
“Innaminute!” I yell.

Charles continues to assault the door. Mom chimes in. “What’s going on in there?”
“Just doing my fracking hair!”

Mom yells, “Some women would kill for your hair! Ask Alex Kingston! You look just like her.”

“Alex Kingston,” I yell back, “is perfect in every way and is married to The Doctor.” I punish the rebellious strands with more conditioner, tie them back, and apply mascara.

My dad shouts from the master bathroom, “River Song is not married to The Doctor, honey. That was in a timeline that no longer exists.”

“River Song is totally married to The Doctor!” I burst out of the bathroom. “Love is—”

Aidan stands there, toothbrush in hand.

“—forever.”

His eyes are a milky blue color, like that neon fluid you find inside glow sticks. Otherworldly. Alien. Beautiful. I fall into them for a moment.

I then realize my bathrobe is open. I clutch the collar closed and feel embarrassment burning up to my earlobes.

“I’m so sorry,” he says. “Your mother said to wait here.”

“It’s okay,” I sputter. Did he already shower? He smells good. I can’t even look at him, I’m so mortified that I might have flashed him. “I’m done.”

“Thank you,” he mutters. As if paralyzed, he doesn’t move until I try to step past.

Pre-order SNOWED, coming November 2nd

We hope you enjoyed this SNOWED excerpt!

RDSP Against Humanity!

RDSP-against-humanityWe Need Your Suggestions

We are creating a custom deck of RDSP-related questions and phrases for use with the game Cards Against Humanity and we want your suggestions! If you’re already familiar with the game you know that we will need some question cards and some cards that can be used as answers to questions.

About Cards Against Humanity

If you haven’t played you can still make suggestions, just know that the idea is to “answer” the question card with the most bizarre, weird and bad taste card in your hand. This will require a lot of creativity! Here are some examples from the game.

Submit your suggestions and our team of game experts will pick the best ones. If one of your cards is picked you will be entered into a raffle to win a free deck!

We plan to use this custom deck when we have our annual RDSP get-together, DogCon, September 30-October 3. Registration and more info about DogCon 5 here.

Guidelines:

  • Deadline: August 30th
  • Submit up to 10 cards by email to books@rawdogscreaming.com
  • Suggestions should be somehow related to Raw Dog Screaming Press books or authors (including our imprints Dog Star Books, Guide Dog Books and Anti-Oedipus Press). For ideas browse our website to see a list of our authors and the books we’ve published

With your help this deck will take things to a new level! In the past, Cards Against Humanity games at RDSP events have been legendary but we want to set the bar even higher for DogCon. So bring your creativity, apply your inner evil genius and let the ideas flow. Each suggestion will earn you an entry in the raffle so keep them coming! We’ll be looking for the most weird, wacky and potentially hilarious combinations.

SNOWED Cover Reveal

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Author: Maria Alexander

Artist: Daniele Serra

About the Book

Charity Jones is a 16-year-old engineering genius who’s much-bullied for being biracial and a skeptic at her conservative school in Oak County, California. Everything changes when Charity’s social worker mother brings home a sweet teen runaway named Aidan to foster for the holidays. Matched in every way, Charity and Aidan quickly fall in love. But it seems he’s not the only new arrival: Charity soon finds the brutally slain corpse of her worst bully and she gets hard, haunting evidence that the killer is stalking Oak County. As she and her Skeptics Club investigate this death and others, they find at every turn the mystery only grows darker and more deadly. One thing’s for certain: there’s a bloody battle coming this holiday season that will change their lives – and human history – forever.

Will they be ready?

Find out this 2016 holiday season how Charity, you, me, everyone…has been Snowed.

What They’re Saying About Snowed

Snowed is a whole ‘nother nightmare about Christmas by that troublemaker writer, Maria Alexander. Her work always keep me up all night and Snowed is no exception! I’m already looking in my dusty, cobwebbed Christmas stocking for the sequel. C’mon, Maria! Hurry up!”
—Nancy Holder, New York Times bestselling author, The Rules

“Sorry Katniss and Bella… Charity is the hero I’ve been waiting for. She is sharp, fierce, loyal, and not afraid to let her brain move in concert with her heart. If bodies started dropping in my neighborhood, she’s who I’d want by my side.”
—Lilla Zuckerman Writer / Producer Marvel’s Agents of Shield, Fringe

Reserve your copy of Snowed today with a pre-order!

About the Author

maria-alexanderMaria Alexander is a produced screenwriter, published games writer, virtual world designer, award-winning copywriter, interactive theatre designer, prolific fiction writer, snarkiologist and poet. Her stories have appeared in publications such as Chiaroscuro Magazine, Gothic.net and Paradox, as well as in acclaimed anthologies alongside legends such as David Morrell and Heather Graham.

Her debut novel, Mr. Wicker, won the 2014 Bram Stoker Award for Superior Achievement in a First Novel. Publisher’s Weekly called it, “(a) splendid, bittersweet ode to the ghosts of childhood,” while Library Journal hailed it in a Starred Review as “a horror novel to anticipate.” She’s represented by Alex Slater at Trident Media Group.

When she’s not wielding a katana at her local shinkendo dojo, she’s being outrageously spooky or writing Doctor Who filk. She lives in Los Angeles with two ungrateful cats, a pervasive sense of doom, and a purse called Trog.

About the Artist

Daniele Serra was born and lives in Italy. He works as illustrator and comic artist, his work has been published in Europe, Australia, United States and Japan. He has worked for DC Comics, Image Comics, Cemetery Dance, Weird Tales magazine, PS Publishing, and other publications. Winner of the British Fantasy Award.

The Cover Art Creation Process

Reserve your copy of Snowed today with a pre-order!

City Ash and Desert Bones Cover Reveal

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Author: Laurel Myler https://twitter.com/victorylaurels
Artist: Bradley Sharp http://dogstarbooks.blogspot.com/p/cover-artist.html

From the back cover of City Ash and Desert Bones:

300 years in the future the world is run by the Theocracy and the Apostles are their representatives. The tiny, dusty and ironically named town of Big City has never seen Apostles until the newly deputized team, Reesa and Joule, are given their first assignment—get to the bottom of the town’s untapped oil reserves. Reesa and Joule are a married couple, supposed to have been matched perfectly by the Theocracy, and she is eager to do her duty while he is dismayed at the backwater, Old West-style location they find themselves in.

Just as Big City belies its name, so do nearly all appearances in this small town. Efforts to find out what’s going on there are thwarted by the mayor and citizens alike. Soon they discover that the quaint false front of the town hides a terrible truth—it’s under siege by creatures known as Takers. The town has placed their faith in Tombstone, a stoic straight shooter, but even he can’t keep everyone safe. As the bodies begin to mount Reesa strikes out on her own only to discover that she is at the center of the biggest lie of all.

“Laurel Myler’s explosively energetic vision of our dystopian future ignites our deepest fears, challenging us to contemplate what it means to be human, what physical and spiritual resources may be required to survive when the ones we most love become murderous biohazards. In a world this dangerous and unpredictable, a hero must be a deadly sniper willing to perpetrate ethical extermination. Vividly imagined and emotionally resonant, City Ash and Desert Bones transports us from chaos to grace, finally offering an unexpected savior, a woman born from many others, a beautiful monster whose disparate fragments of memory compel her to make the ultimate sacrifice. This disturbing, redemptive tale is a journey to the depths of the soul, a harrowing adventure that inspires us to interrogate our capacity for love and mercy, our understanding of social justice, and the limits of our compassion.”
—Melanie Rae Thon author of Silence & Song and The 7th Man

About the Author

LaurelMylerAuthorLaurel Myler is a graduate of the University of Utah where she studied Psychology and Latin. Her hobbies include watching TV, playing fetch with her cat, collecting model ships, and eating sushi. On the weekends she moonlights as a Howard Jones impersonator. Her work has been performed at Westminster College and the Great Salt Lake Fringe Festival. This is her first novel.

According to The Daily Utah Chronicle, “Myler is a woman on a mission.” Read more about her stage play, honors studies, and more at  http://dailyutahchronicle.com/2016/07/26/myler-is-a-woman-on-a-mission/.

Be part of the mission team by pre-ordering City Ash and Desert Bones at Amazon!

DogCon 5 at Broadkill Writers Resort Announced

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DogCon is a big shindig RDSP holds every year to celebrate books, authors and all our supporters. It’s a chance for the RDSP family to get together, meet each other, show off the latest works and begin new creative ventures.

DogCon 5 at Broadkill Beach

At last year’s DogCon we announced that we were acquiring a beach house writing resort. This year, we’re inviting you to come see it! Activities will be running Friday to Monday but Saturday, October 1 & Sunday October 2nd will be the main event.

Each DogCon is different and this one will be more about strengthening the RDSP author community than having public book events. Activities on Saturday & Sunday afternoon/evening will be aimed at the public but other times will be more for the authors. However, anyone is still welcome to hang out the whole time. Plans are evolving but here are some of the things we will definitely do:

  • Group meals/snacks (likely a shrimp boil, s’mores, Gooey donuts and a cookout)
  • Readers Choice Award winner announcement, presentation of the championship belt
  • State of the Dog Address, what does the future hold for RDSP?
  • Beach bonfire (weather permitting)
  • Visit to Dogfish Head brewery (tours are available but are 1st come, not guaranteed)
  • Guest speaker publicity expert Beverly Bambury will give tips on book promo
  • One-on-one sessions with Beverly will be available for a fee
  • A live writing Instigation led by Mike Arnzen
  • Story Swap: authors will swap short pieces & perform each others’ work aloud
  • Thunderdome death matches (just kidding…maybe)
  • Authors will share promo tips
  • Readings by RDSP authors

Eventbrite - DogCon5

Accommodations

We are going to try to have as many RDSP authors staying at our place as possible but there will not be enough room for everyone. There are several places to spend the night nearby though. The closest place is about 10 minutes away, Red Mill Inn, but you have to call to make a reservation. The rates are in the neighborhood of $100 per night. I’d say the coolest place is Dogfish Head Inn but it’s pricey. Anchorage Motel is an economical choice and Heritage Inn is the middle ground.

What if I can’t attend? Well, you can still have access to:

• Simulcasts of readings and more
• Google hangouts for on-site discussions or Q&A with netizens
• Post-event videos, slideshows, and more at our official site
• A total lack of all the cool things you would get in person

FAQs

Is this only for authors and editors affiliated with the various imprints of Raw Dog Screaming Press?

No! Anyone who has an interest in literature, art, music, fringe culture, or whatever…come hang out!

How much food is covered by my ticket?

Some snacks, beverages, and meals, but you will need to plan for some dining yourself. Also, we are not providing alcoholic drinks. You are welcome to bring food and drinks you are comfortable with (yes, that includes alcohol!) for yourself or to share. A full kitchen will be at your disposal.

Will food options be available for somebody with my dietary needs?

If you have special requests please let us know in advance, and we will attempt to meet your needs. A fully equipped kitchen will also be available if you would prefer to store and prepare your own food.

Eventbrite - DogCon5

Origins of the police

File under things that make you go hmm….

Works in theory

The Five Points district of lower Manhattan, painted by George Catlin in 1827. New York’s first free Black settlement, it became a mixed-race slum, home to Blacks and Irish alike, and a focal point for the stormy collective life of the new working class. Cops were invented to gain control over neighborhoods and populations like this. The Five Points district of lower Manhattan, painted by George Catlin in 1827. New York’s first free Black settlement, Five Points was also a destination for Irish immigrants and a focal point for the stormy collective life of the new working class. Cops were invented to gain control over neighborhoods and populations like this.

In England and the United States, the police were invented within the space of just a few decades — roughly from 1825 to 1855.

The new institution was not a response to an increase in crime, and it really didn’t lead to new methods for dealing with crime. The most common way for authorities to solve a crime, before and since the invention of police, has been for someone to tell them who did it.

Besides, crime has to do with the acts of individuals, and the ruling elites who invented the police were responding to challenges posed…

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My sister, my self

My mother passed away early this morning. The support and love shown both online and off has been inspirational. I disappeared for a while there, even walking away in mid-conversation with some of you, for which I apologize. The coming days should see me gradually become more active here again. In the meantime I’m tending to my mother’s affairs. Special thanks to my aunt and cousins for everything they have done over the last couple weeks and continue to do, to Roger and Jeanne for giving me a place to crash near the hospital and grab a few hours sleep here and there, and to Jennifer for keeping everything in my personal life going while I was preoccupied. My aunt wrote this wonderfully frank tribute to my mother today, packed with plenty of adorable childhood pictures. Be well, and take care of your loved ones.

youcanteaticecreamintheshower

13445327_1018435218226814_5180474692144154131_n I love this picture of Jill, standing between Ginger F. (right) and me. Look at that laugh while we’re in the snow, waiting for the school bus at Ballietts’.

Jill is dead. My younger sister, 69, my sweet, funny, bright, troubled, generous, kind, sad sister died at the beginning of this first day of summer.

I’ve been waiting, but not ready, for this day since she nearly starved herself to death as a high-schooler. We had no word for anorexia then or any tools for dealing with it, and I think that’s when she ruined her health. She had a Scarlett O’Hara-sized waist, and her hair came out by the handful.

I don’t remember when the pendulum swung waaaay back. I must have been in Boston, struggling with a college life for which I was completely unprepared.

When she was in college, we, meaning our mother, started getting the dramatic phone…

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Cover Reveal: STOLEN AWAY by Kristin Dearborn

Shotgun Logic

Today I have the honor and the pleasure to be presenting to you for the very first time the cover to Kristin Dearborn’s new novel STOLEN AWAY, coming on June 25 from Raw Dog Screaming Press. I’ll be reviewing that book over on This Is Horror soon, so watch for that, but don’t wait for it by any means. You can pre-order the book right now. In the meantime dig this lovely cover art by the talented artist, Daniele Serra. Thanks to Raw Dog Screaming Press for allowing me to share this with you.

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About the Artist:

The cover was created by Italian artist Daniele Serra. He is a winner of the British Fantasy Award and has worked with companies such as DC Comics, Image Comics, Cemetery Dance, Weird Tales Magazine and PS Publishing. Visit his web site to see more of his art: http://www.multigrade.it

STOLEN AWAY Synopsis:

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Catching Up On Things: Film Adaptation

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Ridley Scott, director of Alien, Blade Runner, Gladiator, and The Martian

There has been a lot of news recently, so much that I have not been able to even blog about it. I’m going to post briefly on each item daily for a while just to get it all out.

51v1t48NzmL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_First: the major film news regarding a book we published at Raw Dog Screaming Press, Wraiths of the Broken Land by S. Craig Zahler. You frequently hear about literary material being optioned, but in this case 20th Century Fox went a step further with the commitment to make Wraiths of the Broken Land their follow-up to The Martian, reuniting director Ridley Scott, screenwriter Drew Goddard (Daredevil, The Cabin in the Woods), and producers Simon Kinberg, Michael Schaefer, and Aditya Sood.

Jen and I have enjoyed our publishing partnership with Zahler, going on to publish his science fiction novel Corpus Chrome, Inc. after doing Wraiths. While all of that is rewarding, it was especially nice to see his film Bone Tomahawk–which he wrote and directed–do so well on its release last autumn, since he had been fighting an uphill battle to make that film the whole time we knew him.

fid16068There was a ton of publicity once the deal broke on May 10th, and of course sales have skyrocketed. Unfortunately Amazon ran out of paperback copies in a single day, and couldn’t keep the book in stock for two weeks straight, but it seems they’ve finally ordered enough copies to keep up with the demand. Of all the articles my favorites were at Fangoria, Yahoo Finance, and Geek Tyrant, but there was also good coverage at Entertainment Weekly, Variety, and Deadline.

Zahler is preparing to start production on his next directorial effort, Brawl on Cell Block 99, by the end of the summer, and is also going to be writing the Puppet Master relaunch. There’s more big news in the works, but for now all I can say is read Corpus Chrome, Inc. and Wraiths of the Broken Land to stay ahead of the crowd.

RDSP Signs Maria Alexander’s YA Novel SNOWED

maria-alexanderWe are very pleased to announce that we’ve signed Maria Alexander’s second novel SNOWED continuing the productive collaboration that began with MR. WICKER which garnered a Bram Stoker Award for Superior Achievement in a First Novel. It’s slated for release later this year and is sure to be a popular title for the winter holidays.

SNOWED is about Charity Jones, a 16-year-old engineering genius who’s much-bullied for being biracial and a skeptic at her conservative school in Oak County, California. After a particularly painful day, Charity’s social worker mother brings home a teen runaway named Aidan to foster for the holidays. Matched in every way, Charity and Aidan begin to fall secretly in love. But he’s not the only new arrival. Charity soon finds the brutally slain corpse of her worst bully and she gets hard, haunting evidence that the killer is stalking Oak County. She and her Skeptics Club investigate the death, finding at every turn the mystery only grows darker and more deadly. But one thing’s for certain: there’s a bloody battle coming this holiday season that will change their lives – and human history – forever. Will they be ready?

Stay tuned for more updates on this amazing release!

About the Author

Maria Alexander writes pretty much every damned thing and gets paid to do it. She’s a produced screenwriter and playwright, published games writer, virtual world designer, award-winning copywriter, interactive theatre designer, prolific fiction writer, snarkiologist and poet. Her stories have appeared in publications such as Chiaroscuro Magazine, Gothic.net and Paradox, as well as numerous acclaimed anthologies alongside living legends such as David Morrell and Heather Graham.

Her second poetry collection—At Louche Ends: Poetry for the Decadent, the Damned and the Absinthe-Minded—was nominated for the 2011 Bram Stoker Award. And she was a winner of the 2004 AOL Time-Warner “Time to Rhyme” poetry contest.

When not wielding a katana at her local shinkendo dojo, she’s being outrageously spooky and writing Doctor Who filk. She lives in Los Angeles with two ungrateful cats and a purse called Trog.

Explore her website: www.mariaalexander.net. You won’t regret it.

What they are saying about Maria Alexander and MR. WICKER

BOOKS-mrwicker“…the fantastic premise of memories so terrible they need to be excised and hidden away makes this a horror novel to anticipate.”Library Journal starred review

“Convincing in its haunting whimsy, Alexander’s emotionally complex faerie tale comments on grim reality with chilling metaphors….Illness, loss, and heartache color this splendid, bittersweet ode to the ghosts of childhood.”Publishers Weekly

“…a gothic tale in the old sense of the word; secrets, hidden libraries, crows, candles, haunted pasts and uncertain futures, sprinkled with dark shadows and hooded figures.”—Madeleine Swann for Dirge Magazine

“At once mythic and immediate, MR. WICKER by Maria Alexander is a vivid synthesis of dark folk tale and modern horror.”—Fangoria

“Suicide, love, lust, lost dreams and twisted purgatories…Maria Alexander’s Mr. Wicker is an original, crafted of startling images and darkly poetic language. Eerily effective.” —Steven Barnes, author of Lion’s Blood

Mr. Wicker is as deeply disturbing a debut novel as I’ve ever read.”— Jonathan Maberry, New York Times bestselling author of Code Zero and Fall of Night

“Elegant chills, genuine awe, and true tragedy are all ingredients in the spell cast by Maria Alexander’s Mr. Wicker. Anyone who has encountered Maria’s short stories surely expects her first novel to be extraordinary, and she doesn’t disappoint. Mr. Wicker is rich, lovely, and deeply unnerving.” —Lisa Morton, author of Malediction and Trick or Treat: A History of Halloween 

“Exquisite pleasure and pain coexist in her nightmare world of sinful decadence. The reader is thrust into the abstruse plain of suffering where there is no bliss without grief and longing remains unsated.”Dreadful Tales

“…elegantly stunning…” Fatally Yours

“…handles the subtleties of the mystery genre well…”Rue Morgue

“Maria Alexander’s stories are darkly funny and deliciously addictive.”—Jon Evans, Arthur Ellis Award-winning author of Dark Places

“A darker, angrier Neil Gaiman.” ­—Gothic.net

 

The man your librarian warned you about…

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