Two questions with… Romance Edition – K Bird Lincoln

Two Questions With . . .

 

It’s a new year and a new round of our blog tour! I’m very excited about this round because we’re embracing Valentine’s month and going ROMANCE… So, dive into that heart-shaped box of chocolates with me as I welcome K Bird Lincoln.

 

Q: What’s the UF romance trope you wish would just go away: fated mates a la shifter romance or December/May a la vampire?

 

Go to your kitchen sink right now. Take all those insta-love fated to be mates stories and stick them down the drain. Run the garbage disposal.

 

I’m serious. I am a proud Romance Junkie (Smart Bitches, Trashy Books is my go-to site for new eBooks) who started reading Harlequin and Johanna Lindsey/Kathleen Woodiwiss in grade school. Old Skool romance populated with Alpha heroes just this side of stalker who fell in love with the heroine when he first laid eyes on her and girls in layers of petticoats who couldn’t tear their eyes away from muscled calves was my first introduction to LURVE. I swooned as a pre-teen over Cutter and Leetah’s fated love in Elfquest.

 

Then I grew up. Insta-love, which can be compelling when you’re a hormone-ridden teen, is not as compelling to me as an adult. And there’s nothing worse than Urban Fantasy where two powerful people come together against their will and are bonded with insta-love (not to be confused with insta-attraction which is totally fine) with no room at all for the lovely dance of courtship and anticipation of that first kiss.

 

One of the reasons I love Patricia Briggs’ Mercy Thompson world so much is because her werewolves and shifters have to court each other under highly constrained rules. There are places where females are acknowledged dominant and roles within the pack they can play. This makes for courting with a slice of danger and excitement. And because Fate doesn’t force Mercy and Adam together, there’s a believable frisson of doubt about them getting together in the first place. There’s room for that relationship to mature, ebb and flow, and become something that encompasses the rest of the cast as well.

 

So, I’d be happy to say goodbye to insta-love fated mates. Now, if the mates hated each other from the first a la Pride and Prejudice, and then had to battle their own shifter hot blood and instincts to come to a relationship compromise—that would be lovely. Does that exist? Shifter Pride and Prejudice with smexy times? I’d read that…..

 

Q: What’s the most difficult aspect of writing romance?

 

I do have a couple romantic subplots in my Urban Fantasy Portland Hafu Trilogy. The first book, Dream Eater, introduces you to Koi Pierce, a college student struggling with a father suffering from Alzheimer’s and a secret that has kept her isolated from the rest of the world for years.

 

A mysterious stranger comes into her life that speaks the same Northern dialect of Japanese as her father just as she begins to suspect one of her professors is hiding a deadly secret.

 

Koi and the mysterious stranger definitely are interested in each other. The hardest thing for me in writing a believable romance is the lack of time Koi and Ken (aforementioned mysterious stranger) spend together. Dangerous and emotionally intense times do make humans bond with each other, but in action-focused Urban Fantasy its sometimes difficult to portray how a deeply introverted person like Koi would allow herself to trust a stranger. Or jump into physical contact so quickly with someone she literally met the prior day without resorting to fate or insta-love, or all that stuff I just finished complaining about in the prior question!

 

Every time I start to write a kissing scene, I hear all the dialogue in Tim Meadow’s voice from his SNL skit as The Ladies’ Man, wearing a silk shirt open at the neck, cradling a wine glass of Courvoisier. I burst out laughing and have to bite my tongue before I can keep writing the scene. Because the mechanics of lips and tongue and smooching are a bit ridiculous to actually type onto a computer screen. The tricky part is using those mechanics to convey the complicated emotions without defaulting to the smooth-talking seductive blathering of Tim Meadows.

 

Or resorting to all the alpha-male introducing innocent ingenue to her first kiss scenes I devoured in Old Skool Historical Romance books as an adolescent. It’s a tricky balancing act trying to create the circumstances where a social hermit (Koi) and a beta male (Ken) would actually come together. He can’t just sweep her off her feet. She can’t handle simple touching without totally freaking out. Ken has to be persistent, but also give her space to get accustomed to being close. It’s a tall order for a story that happens within a handful of days.

 

Writing believable romance is a tough job, but someone has to do it!

 

 

Last Dream Front (1)Last Dream of Her Mortal Soul, the stunning conclusion to K. Bird Lincoln’s The Portland Hafu Trilogy releases March 19th, but the pre-order links are all live now!

 

Even a dream eater can’t escape the final sleep…

After her trip to Japan, the Head of Portland Kind calls Koi home to help solve a murder. The body of a powerful magical being was found in the witch’s hut in Forest Park, along with a strange, haunting quotation about dreams and death written in blood. Can Koi discover who seems to be calling out a Baku before others from her new-found family die?

 

 

Bringer of Death Cover_finalYou can also get a free taste of Ken the mysterious stranger in the free prequel Novelette, Bringer-of-Death downloadable from Bookfunnel. (You can opt in to my newsletter when you download and make sure not to miss writing news, chances to win chocolate, and access to discounted eBooks. May your Kindle never be empty).

 

Will a Kitsune assassin have the courage to defy the Council and save a Baku?

 

Japan lost World War II, but the Tokyo Council still rules the magical Kind with an iron will. When the Council’s enforcer, Bringer-of-Death, receives orders to go after a veteran who happens to be a Baku—dream eater— he is caught between the threat of punishment and his desire to help the Baku escape. Can Bringer-of-Death find a way to both protect his family and the Baku? Or will he be trapped as the Council’s slave forever?

Download this novelette, Bringer-of-Death, to experience Fujiwara Ken’s very first meeting with the Baku Herai Akihito— way before he encounters Akihito’s daughter, Koi Pierce, at the start of Dream Eater, the first book of K. Bird Lincoln’s multi-cultural Portland Hafu Urban Fantasy Trilogy.

 

 

kirstenatraintaxiBird Lincoln is an ESL professional and writer living on the windswept Minnesota Prairie with family and a huge addiction to frou-frou coffee. Also dark chocolate– without which, the world is a howling void. Originally from Cleveland, she has spent more years living on the edges of the Pacific Ocean than in the Midwest. Her speculative short stories are published in various online & paper publications such as Strange Horizons. Her medieval Japanese fantasy series, Tiger Lily, is available from Amazon. World Weaver Press released Dream Eater, the first novel in an exciting, multi-cultural Urban Fantasy trilogy set in Portland and Japan, in 2017. She also writes tasty speculative fiction reviews on Amazon and Goodreads. Check her out on Facebook, join her newsletter for chocolate and free stories, or stalk her online at her What I Should Have Said blog.

 

Thank you to K for stopping by!

I’m super excited to be hosting the following authors on these dates:

February 4: K Bird Lincoln

February 11: Janet Walden-West

February 18: Ken Schrader

February 25: Don’t miss the recap of all my answers across the series, plus a bonus pair.

 

Stayed tuned for all the interviews! And check out the rest of our series on these fantastic blogs:

K Bird Lincoln’s What I Should Have Said

Janet Walden-West’s Blog

Ken Schrader’s It’s All In My Head

 

~Raven

 

Advertisements

Two questions with… Romance Edition – Janet Walden-West

Two Questions With . . .

I’m extra, extra delighted to be hosting my CP bestie on my blog today as we continue our blog tour. And look, she brought treats… Janet always knows how to woo me!

 

hot-chocolate-1781077_1920

Pours the coffee and slices a lovely Red Velvet cheesecake, in honor of Valentine’s

 

I’m thrilled to be back on the “2 Questions With” blog hop, discussing one of my favorite topics, with my favorite critique partner. I can’t wait to jump into the discussion, and you guys should pop over to my site next to see Anne’s answers.

 

Q: Slow burn or insta-love?

I appreciate that some writers and readers are all over insta-love. It can certainly provide interesting problems for the fated couple to overcome. If that’s your catnip? Embrace it.

My catnip? Let’s put it this way—#TeamSlowBurnForevah.

Much like good barbeque (because I cannot leave the food metaphors alone, anymore than I can leave foodie moments out of any of my stories), a tasty relationship should marinate and cook at a sensual, low heat until done.

Slow burn has allll my love.

For me, seventy-five percent of the fun is the buildup, the will-they-or-won’t-they anticipation, the little touches and surprise glances. The building heat and intimacy (and adorable awkwardness) as two people either discover or acknowledge their attraction is delicious. I kind of revel in that extended period of getting to know the characters, and them getting to know each other—especially if at least one is an avowed anti-relationship grump. That’s my recipe for the perfect read.

 

(Anne: See? This is why Janet and I are such good friends…)

 

Q: What’s the most difficult aspect of writing romance?

Honestly? Plotting. Plotting in general is my nemesis. Ask Anne how many times she’s talked me off an I-can’t-write-this-story/kill-it-now ledge. She deserves a lifetime supply of cheesecake for her service above and beyond the required CP code of conduct.

Because my stories always start with characters, and are largely character driven, I’m then left to create the perfect plot to drop them into. Invariably, I either under-plot, my most common mistake, or go wild an over-plot, cutting into my romance arc and leaving too many threads to try to tie together.

Beat sheets and group CP brainstorming sessions have saved my stories more often than I can count, yet another reason to cultivate your writing community and nurture those friendships, y’all.

 

(Anne: It’s true! Find your writing people. Because that ledge Janet mentioned above? She’s saved me from more than I can count.)

 

Janet MeCCJanet Walden-West lives in the southeast with a pack of show dogs, a couple of kids, and a husband who didn’t read the fine print.  She has an unseemly obsession with dusty artifacts, great cars, and bad coffee. A founding member of the East Tennessee Creative Writers Alliance and The Million Words craft blog, she is also a member of Romance Writers of America member. She pens Urban Fantasy that escapes the neat confines of the city limits in favor of map-dot hillbilly towns, and inclusive Romantic Suspense and Contemporary Romance. A #PitchWars alum, her first short story, Road Trip, is included in the Chasing the Light anthology.

 

Find Me At:

Website: http://www.janetwaldenwest.weebly.com

Twitter: @JanetWaldenWest

Instagram: janetwaldenwest

Chasing the Light

 

I’m super excited to be hosting the following authors on these dates:

February 4: K Bird Lincoln

February 11: Janet Walden-West

February 18: Ken Schrader

February 25: Don’t miss the recap of all my answers across the series, plus a bonus pair.

 

Stayed tuned for all the interviews! And check out the rest of our series on these fantastic blogs:

K Bird Lincoln’s What I Should Have Said

Janet Walden-West’s Blog

Ken Schrader’s It’s All In My Head

 

~Raven

Two questions with… Halloween Edition Blog Tour Recap

During the month of October, I took part in the Two questions with… Halloween Edition blog tour! This week, we’re doing a recap of all those spooky shenanigans. So, if you missed a week, take a look at these harrowing delights… otherwise known as my answers.

Two Questions Halloween edition

 

Q: How do you define Horror?

A quick internet search will bring up definitions like, “painful and intense fear, dread, or dismay”, “aversion or repugnance”, and “an overwhelming and painful feeling caused by something frightfully shocking, terrifying, or revolting”.

 

I confess, I’ve never been a horror fan. Mostly because I define horror as something that’s often excessively filled with lots of gore—think the Saw movies. I know it’s a huge industry, probably one of the biggest even, but I’ve never understood the willingness to read/watch something purposely designed to repulse you. I’m assuming it has something to do with an adrenaline rush, but sadly, it’s not my thing. Also, I have a highly active imagination, so I tend to be more fearful of what my own brain will conjure up post-horror movie. And I daren’t ever try to read a horror book because I’d likely never sleep again—thank you, imagination.

 

That said, I love dark and twisty things, and I have enjoyed a few horror movies over the years, but they’re generally more of a psychological horror which I’d probably class as more of a thriller… which leads to question number 2…

 

Q: Is there any difference between Horror and Thriller? If so, what is it?

I truly believe there is a major difference between Horror and Thriller. I dislike Horror, but I LOVE Thriller!

 

Again, a quick internet search provides definitions like, “a high degree of intrigue, adventure, or suspense”, “an exciting and frightening story”, and “surprise, anticipation and anxiety”.

 

So, while Horror is designed to repulse, Thrillers are meant to, well, thrill. They’re exciting and make you think. They take you on a suspenseful journey through twists and turns, and if done well, they’ll surprise you with something at the end. Sure, there are overlaps, but I think in general there can be a clear distinction between the two genres.

 

Q: Monsters: Do you prefer: External – something that we have to overcome, something that isn’t “Us.” (Giant Sharks, alien invasion, Rabid Trees, etc) or Internal – Something that shows us that “We” could be the monsters (Carrie, Psycho, Vampires, etc)?

I LOVE internal monsters! This is definitely my catnip.

 

I’m a sucker for fantastical creatures, but that’s not at all limited to evil monsters. Give me an intricate villain (or even a hero harbouring a dark side), a mere mortal or a creature of sorts, that’s a monster on the inside, and I’m thrilled.

 

It presents a whole host of questions. How did they get to be so evil? Were they always evil or did something happen—nature VS nurture? Do they have redeemable qualities, something that keeps them from stepping over that sadistic line, or are they already way beyond that?

 

I’ve been known to explore this theme, and will probably continue to explore it in future. I’m fascinated by the endless possibilities…

 

Q: Which Horror Trope would you love to see die, and never return from the grave?

Evil dolls—particularly those meant for kids—that come to life!

 

Seriously. When I was about eight, my older cousin had her thirteenth birthday party, and since our families were (and still are) really close, I joined the fun even though I was much younger. Bad idea. Why, you ask?

 

Turned out that a viewing of Chucky was on the menu. I’m not going to delve too deep into those memories, but I’ve never quite recovered. Largely because I’d been given a porcelain doll by my dear grandmother… which I genuinely loathed and despised—good thing she’ll never see this. When I got home after the party, I asked my mom to remove said porcelain doll from my room. FAR from my room.

 

I’ve never been able to look at a doll the same way again. In fact, I still get the creeps when my niece plays with her dolls. So, this is a trope I would truly love to see die and never, EVER, return. Please, and thank you!

 

Q: What is your favorite part of the Season?

So, I’m actually South African, and we don’t really celebrate Halloween here. At least not to the extent of countries like America. Each year seems to bring more emphasis on the creepy holiday, but that’s only been in the last few years anyway.

 

We don’t trick or treat.

We don’t carve pumpkins to make Jack-o-lanterns.

 

The commercial world does like to grab onto the Halloween theme. TV networks run Horror movie marathons. Shops do a scary-inspired sale. And you’ll find a good deal of Halloween-themed chocolate. But mostly—at least in the last handful of years—people have Halloween parties, enjoying the excuse to dress-up. Again, it’s on a much smaller scale, but it’s growing steadily.

 

If we did go all-out on the celebrations, I think my favourite part would be the costumes and party decor. I’m kind of known for going overboard with themed parties, so Halloween is the perfect excuse to go wild and have fun. A couple years ago, I threw my sister a Rocky Horror Picture Show themed 30th birthday party. Actually, we called it her “Thirty Horror Birthday Show”. Fake blood and spider webs everywhere. Crazy outfits I shall not even mention. A corset cake I made from scratch. It was a blast. And could very easily double up as a Halloween party.

 

Q: Favorite October Food?

Since October means springtime with a hint of summer in South Africa, this is totally different from the American version of pumpkin-spiced lattes that I see mentioned on Twitter.

 

I don’t think I have a particular food that I crave in October. I AM a coffeeholic all year round, but that doesn’t change come October. With the warmer weather, I’ll probably go for ice cream more often since that’s my other weakness! Also, new fruits start to show themselves—like nectarines and papaya (or paw paw as we call it here). Finally, I’m a huge fan of citrus, so October means saying goodbye to those last few stragglers still hanging around. Time to get your fill before they all disappear until next winter.

 

That’s not a very exciting list, is it? Coffee, ice cream, and fruit. I’m a simple creature.

 

Q: What was the first book (who was the first Author) to frighten you in a story?

So, I’ve never read a really scary book. I know, gasp!

 

However, the first author I read that had the most creep-tastic creatures was Kelly Creagh with her YA novel Nevermore—inspired by Edgar Allan Poe. I think it’s classed as a YA fantasy/paranormal with hints of horror and romance. I loved the Goth elements and the subtle creep factor that grows and develops as the tale unfolds.

 

The crowning glory—for me—are the Nocs. They are humanoid type creatures, with feathers for hair, sharp fang-like teeth… and best of all, they’re made from something akin to porcelain. When they get injured, as they do, they shatter, leaving gaping, jagged holes in their torsos or faces. Or their hands and legs smash off, and they have to replace them with former Noc parts.

 

They are amazingly disturbing and perfectly fitted for Creagh’s eerie, Goth atmosphere.

 

Q: How do you handle frightening elements in your writing?

I don’t have many frightening elements in my writing. It’s usually more of an internal terror—tragic pasts that leave characters damaged. For example, in one of my romantic suspenses, my FMC witnesses the brutal murder of her mother as a child. This obviously has a ripple effect and causes a lot of issues for her later in life and sets off the main plot. In my current romantic suspense WIP, I’m giving both my MCs very tragic background / childhoods that will come back to haunt them in the present timeline.

 

Sensing a theme? I like working in past traumas that filter through over the years. It creates layers of damage that can really develop as the MC ages. I use these as a way to build suspense, though. Not exactly frightening, but its close enough.

 

Q: What is your go-to scary/Halloween movie?

So, as I said in week one of our tour, I’m not a Horror fan, however, there are some scary movies I enjoy.

 

One I’d probably class as more Thriller than Horror is The Others. I remember when it came out years ago, my sister thought it was the creepiest thing. For me, this movie falls into psychological thriller rather than a gore-fest horror, which is probably why I like it. On a lighter note, I enjoy the quirkier Halloween movies. I love A nightmare before Christmas. As a kid, Hocus Pocus both thrilled and terrified me in equal measures, and who doesn’t love Practical Magic?

 

But, for me, the ultimate Halloween movie is the 1994 cult favourite, The Crow. My CP bestie and today’s tour host, Janet and I have discussed our mutual love of this movie. It’s obviously not scary, but it does center around Devil’s Night, the night before Halloween, so I’m claiming this as my top pick!

 

Q: Funny (Now) scary anecdote to share?

I’ve had back luck with the (few) scary movies I’ve watched over the years. First, at age eight, there was Chucky—hard pass. Then, at age eleven, my best friend was a boy obsessed with snakes, so of course for his birthday he wanted to go see Anaconda. My other best friend and I spent the entire movie clutching each other in our seats, and burying our faces in each other’s hair. Again, hard pass.

 

As if I hadn’t yet learnt my lesson, a later best friend talked me into going to watch House of Wax when it released back in 2005. As a teen girl, I was swayed by the promise of cute boys, so the two of us went to see it alone one night.

 

Somehow, the theatre was mostly empty, so we sat near the middle, pretty close to the back. The movie was about halfway through, right in the midst of scary wax-covered humans with their skin peeling off (yeah, no thanks)…

 

This strange croaky breathing came from behind our seats. It rasped in and out, growing deeper.

 

I turned to my friend with a WTF expression.

 

Her eyes were huge, just as freaked as I was…

 

We turned—slowly—to glance over our shoulders… and found an old woman sitting in the row behind us… fast asleep, and on the verge of snoring.

 

She continued for the rest of the movie, which added to the low-budget scary vibes because she always seemed to time those croaking snores at just the right, scariest moments. BF and I laughed so hard when we left the theatre, but at the time it was the freakiest thing EVER!

 

Look for more harrowing fun at:

Pat Esden’s Mythmaker Blog

R J Theodore’s website

Ken Schrader’s It’s All In My Head

K Bird Lincoln’s What I Should Have Said

Janet Walden-West’s Blog

 

~Raven

Two questions with… Halloween Edition Blog Tour – Janet Walden-West

Our blog tour is back, and this time we’re doing it Halloween style!

Two Questions Halloween edition

It’s October, which means many creative minds are starting to turn toward the spooky, fanged, clawed, and winged. To celebrate, a small coven of writers has emerged from the darkness to share their harrowing delights with you. Each week, we will tour each other’s blogs and answer questions about our favorite spooky shenanigans.

Halloween is almost here, and I’m extra excited to host my CP bestie, the spellbinding Janet Walden-West… While Janet entertains you with her answers, I’m digging into those treats she brought!

 

Anne,spiderweb cheesecake 2

I’m thrilled to be back, this time talking all things dark and disturbing. I also brought coffee, pumpkin spice creamer optional. Ooh, and Halloween cheesecake. Because our pact forbids any discussion that doesn’t include coffee and cheesecake.

 

 

  1. Which Horror Tropes do you love to twist/would love to see twisted?

I love flipping the script.

At the top of my horror trope wish list? Stories from the Bad Thing’s perspective. Especially when the MC stays a Bad Thing, but the writer can make you root for them anyway. If you can make me love any unapologetically monstrous MC, I’m yours. Bonus points if you can slant the narrative enough to turn them into a true anti-hero(ine) and get me to stop, think, and side-eye the supposed hero’s motives along the way.

 

  1. Favorite October Food?

Twice Baked Sweet PotatoPretty sure Anne snuck this question onto the list just for me. Somehow, food always pops up in my stories, no matter how dark and twisty the subject matter or inhuman the characters.

Let me just say, I have nothing against pumpkin spice, although I prefer it in an actual pie or pumpkin bread.

However, fair warning—we’re all hillbilly/all the time up in here, including a preference for Southern delicacies. The sweet, savory smokiness of slow-roasted sweet potatoes, and the tang of ripe wild muscadines, are my thing. Both are only readily available starting in late September, so they mean Fall to me. Bonus, muscadines are also often turned into a lovely dessert wine.

 

Janet MeCC

Janet Walden-West lives in the southeast with a pack of show dogs, a couple of kids, and a husband who didn’t read the fine print.  She has an unseemly obsession with dusty artifacts, great cars, and bad coffee. A founding member of the East Tennessee Creative Writers Alliance and The Million Words craft blog, she is also a member of Romance Writers of America member. She pens Urban Fantasy that escapes the neat confines of the city limits in favor of map-dot hillbilly towns, and inclusive Romantic Suspense and Contemporary Romance. A #PitchWars alum, her first short story, Road Trip, is included in the Chasing the Light anthology.

 

Find Me At:

Website: http://www.janetwaldenwest.weebly.com

Twitter: @JanetWaldenWest

Instagram: janetwaldenwest

Chasing the Light

 

 

Look for more harrowing fun at:

Pat Esden’s Mythmaker Blog

R J Theodore’s website

Ken Schrader’s It’s All In My Head

K Bird Lincoln’s What I Should Have Said

Janet Walden-West’s Blog

 

~Raven

Two questions with… Halloween Edition Blog Tour – K Bird Lincoln

Our blog tour is back, and this time we’re doing it Halloween style!

Two Questions Halloween edition

It’s October, which means many creative minds are starting to turn toward the spooky, fanged, clawed, and winged. To celebrate, a small coven of writers has emerged from the darkness to share their harrowing delights with you. Each week, we will tour each other’s blogs and answer questions about our favorite spooky shenanigans.

 

This week, I’m thrilled to host the ghostly K Bird Lincoln … Take it away, Kirsten!

 

Funny (Now) scary anecdote to share?

Real story here, or at least as real as my swiss cheese memory recalls. First, I have never seen a ghost or experienced something otherworldly. I am not psychic. I have never seen anyone else truly prove they are psychic. However…I also know there are things beyond my ken that can not (yet) be explained. I also believe, because of this one friend, let’s call her Rose, in high school that some people experience the world differently than I.

 

Okay, disclaimer done. I was a socially-challenged nerd as a freshman in high school. My major social outlet was the band. I sat clarinet second chair to this lovely girl, let’s call her Jane. Jane was not a loser. She wasn’t a popular mean girl, just one of those people who quietly, without fanfare, managed to talk to everyone in a genuine, engaging way.

 

One night, she was on a sleep over with other band friends. One of them, Rose, liked to play with an Ouija board. Rose often claimed she felt spirits or saw auras. I never really believed her. But who was I to claim she couldn’t? The story goes that at the sleep over, Rose brought out her Ouija board and they began to ask a spirit who showed up what each girl would be when they grew up, with Rose the medium through which the spirit spoke. One by one, Rose named each girl’s profession; ambassador, teacher, doctor. However, when she got to Jane, the little Ouija plank refused to move.

 

Rose turned pale and refused to speak. The other girls gathered around and wouldn’t let up teasing until Rose explained what the spirit showed her for Jane’s future.

 

“Nothing,” she said finally. “Just a great empty darkness.”

 

They laughed it off in band the next day, and everyone forgot about it until sophomore year. I walked into band one day and the band teacher told me to take first chair. Jane was home ill and wouldn’t be at school that day. The day turned into a week. The week turned into three weeks. Jane was in a mysterious coma. The doctors thought it was a virus. There was no explanation.

 

And then Jane died.

 

To this day, I am still not aware of any diagnosis. Rose still refuses to talk about that sleepover night. I still don’t believe in ghosts or spirits, but Rose’s reaction to a sleepover game can’t be explained away by electromagnetic impulses.

 

 

Which Horror Trope would you love to see die, and never return from the grave?

Unless you are exploiting stupidity for laughs, like that Geico Insurance commercial where the fleeing teens decide to hide in a garage full of chainsaws instead of the running car, I hate the trope where the young, nubile female is too-stupid-to-be-true in her choice of hiding places. Seriously. In this day and age, not even the most naïve high school student would run down the basement stairs of the abandoned house when spooked. We all know nothing good happens in basements. Now it throws me out of the story. Instead of ratcheting up tension, it’s so unbelievable I have to yell or throw snacks at the TV screen.

 

Make your character smart—and the monster smarter. Think how terrifying it would be if the heroine ran out of the cursed, abandoned house into the street and the monster got her anyway. That would make my skin crawl. Or, let’s have a muscled young guy run down the basement steps and get slaughtered instead of the girl. That would also work for me.

 

Thanks to Anne for hosting me! I’m K. Bird Lincoln, an author of Historical and Urban Fantasy who may or may not be too obsessed with Japan, chocolate, and coffee.

 

Bird Lincoln is an ESL professional and writer living on the windswept Minnesota Prairie with family and a huge addiction to frou-frou coffee. Also dark chocolate– without which, the world is a howling void. Originally from Cleveland, she has spent more years living on the edges of the Pacific Ocean than in the Midwest. Her speculative short stories are published in various online & paper publications such as Strange Horizons. Her medieval Japanese fantasy series, Tiger Lily, is available from Amazon. In 2017 World Weaver Press released Dream Eater, the first novel in an exciting, multi-cultural Urban Fantasy trilogy set in Portland and Japan. It happens to be on sale for 99 cents the month of October 2018 to celebrate the release of the sequel, Black Pearl Dreaming.

She also writes tasty speculative fiction reviews on Amazonand Goodreads. Check her out on Facebook, join her newsletterfor chocolate and free stories, or stalk her online at kblincoln.wordpress.com.

 

Dream Eater Front

Koi Pierce dreams other peoples’ dreams.

Her whole life she’s avoided other people. Any skin-to-skin contact—a hug from her sister, the hand of a barista at Stumptown coffee—transfers flashes of that person’s most intense dreams. It’s enough to make anyone a hermit.

But Koi’s getting her act together. No matter what, this time she’s going to finish her degree at Portland Community College and get a real life. Of course it’s not going to be that easy. Her father, increasingly disturbed from Alzheimer’s disease, a dream fragment of a dead girl from the casual brush of a creepy PCC professor’s hand, and a mysterious stranger who speaks the same rare Northern Japanese dialect as Koi’s father will force Koi to learn to trust in the help of others, as well as face the truth about herself.

“Lincoln successfully mixes Japanese, Native American, and Middle Eastern mythologies in her modern setting, and Koi’s wry voice gives a new perspective on the problems of paranormal gifts.”
–Publishers Weekly

“DREAM EATER brings much-needed freshness to the urban fantasy genre with its inspired use of Japanese culture and mythology and its fully-realized setting of Portland, Oregon. I’m eager to follow Koi on more adventures!”
—Beth Cato, author of The Clockwork Dagger and Breath of Earth

 

Find it Online:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
Books-a-Million
Goodreads
Independent Bookstores
iTunes/Apple iBooks
Kobo

 

 

Look for more harrowing fun at:

Pat Esden’s Mythmaker Blog

R J Theodore’s website

Ken Schrader’s It’s All In My Head

K Bird Lincoln’s What I Should Have Said

Janet Walden-West’s Blog

 

I’m so excited to be hosting the following authors on these dates:

October 1: Pat Esden

October 8: R J Theodore

October 15: Ken Schrader

October 22: K Bird Lincoln

October 29: Janet Walden-West

 

Stayed tuned for all the interviews!

 

~Raven