Our little blog about the Morrigan's Brood book series (and our other books)

News and Announcements

The Baton Moves to the next runner

`Now it’s my (Heather’s) time to take the baton and run.  Hopefully the journey of the baton will continue and be an exciting endeavor for both the authors and the readers.

Image

I have gratefully accepted the baton from one of my favorite authors, Ruth Davis Hays.  She writes the thrilling Translations from Jorthus series, which I feel is quite an original tale wherein the main character is female and does not wield a sword, sling arrows, or throws spears at her enemies.  Lylith, a human spellsinger, learned in the majiks, is not a warrior, but she has a strength that many warriors would envy.  Plus, there’s that hottie D’harromar… mmmm mmmm!  Anyways the best thing to do of course is READ the series.  The books are The Dawnstone Taleand The Convergence.

Ruth also happens to serve as our final editor and she catches a bunch of errors for us.  She helped greatly with the work on Curse of Venus and now is helping us with the editing a novella and a few other side projects.

I’m also very excited that Ruth is going to be at the Triscelle Publishing booth at Aggiecon selling her series!!!  Fun will be had and stories will be told.

You can follow Ruth on facebook, on the Worlds of Jorthus facebook fanpage, and over at goodreads.

Now to get to tooting my, rather our own horn, as I co-author the Morrigan’s Brood series with the kilted hubby otherwise known as Christopher Dunbar.

Morrigan's Brood: Morrigan's Brood Book I
9781937341107_cvr_front
Madness & Reckoning Front Cover
Dark Alliance: Morrigan's Brood Book III Front Cover, by Khanada Taylor
Cover Art for Curse of Venus: Morrigan's Brood Book IV

Now the four questions that must be answered before the baton moves on!

1) What am I working on?

Wow… what am I not working on?  Right now, Chris and I are working on the first draft for Dynasties of Night: Morrigan’s Brood VI.  It involves dragons, and blood-drinkers from the far east who have been fascinating me for quite some time!  I am in the middle of typing a draft of this book (the first draft is written out on notepads – that’s how we roll I guess).  We are working on getting an anthology to print that will involve librarians.  Letsee… I am taking classes on InDesign, a program publishers use to create the layout for books both print and e-book.  We are working on getting Shards of Light:  Morrigan’s Brood V to print before the end of the year.  We are looking into moving our tales into the realm of audiobooks.  I am urging a friend to get her drafts together so we might have a book about other beings in our universe.  I am looking for a new job and I’m listening to the wee kitty Brigid play in the bathtub.  She sees her reflection in the shiny tub and chases herself around… okay so that’s not something I’m working on, but cats make you take on their work too.

As for what’s happening in our world… Julien has discovered something shocking about his parentage.  Marcus is trying to keep it together.  His family is wondering how to deal with Marcus and his issues.  Mandubratius is… having fun.  Let’s face it, that’s his goal in life.  He is a hoot to write for most of the time, though it’s a bit like herding a cat.

2) How does our work differ from others of its genre?

I always tell people that Chris and I write historical fantasy primarily focusing on beings that come from the Celtic countries.  I suppose what we do differently is to bring in mythology from all the ancient cultures that we love (getting to the new world one of these days).  We also bring in blood-drinkers of these ancient cultures and just sort of let them run wild and see what sort of problems they can get themselves into.  We do work hard at fitting the history into the tale and I love weaving historical figures into the series, such as Emperor Charles (Charlemagne).  One of our editors, Sally, said that we don’t write the typical vampire horror stories, we write adventure fantasy where there are blood-drinkers involved.  The blood-drinkers aren’t vampires.  Vampire is a slavic term for the undead.  Our characters don’t move around at night, killing victims.  Most of the time, our characters like to feed off several people or beings because why kill something that can feed you tomorrow night?  Also, they don’t mope about their changed existence.  They have duties and goals set forth by deities or their leaders.  In addition, there is no sparkling.  Some may be beautiful, but some are related to beings such as the fae who can be very beautiful or sometimes quite ugly.  Generally we can be found at sci-fi cons or Celtic festivals.  Our series is becoming known locally, nationally, and internationally through word of mouth.   Which is very exciting.

3) Why do I write what I do?

I’m not sure.  Chris and I generally don’t read a lot of historical fantasy.  Granted, I love Game of Thrones, but that’s not exactly what we write.  I was greatly inspired by traveling overseas to Europe.  I loved learning about the ancient peoples of Britain and Ireland.  I’m a big history nerd and I love the mythology of these places too.  I have always enjoyed a good vampire yarn and thought that the myth seemed a bit tied down to the slavic countries where the beings were undead and gruesome.  I thought it might be fun to see beings from other countries who drank blood and see how cultures could clash.  I guess we write this series primarily because it is so much fun for us.  It brings us great joy.

4) How does your writing process work?

Well… it’s a little confusing.  Chris and I write the first draft together on notepads.  Then, I type it out and add historical nuances and it becomes the second draft.  Chris looks it over and adds more and edits the second draft.  Next, it goes to one of our editors, who reads it and sends it back to Chris.  Then we go through the edits and accept the changes or sometimes rarely, we reject them.  Then it gets published.  It’s a magical process that sometimes makes us tear out our hair, but no big deal.

Now on to the baton tossin’!   It’s going to three very talented authors on Monday, March 31st!

1. Kara Owl

Kara Owl lives in Florida and writes both fiction and non-fiction. Her passions include the tarot, fantastic worlds, football, and magic in the mundane. The first in a planned trilogy is forthcoming from Jupiter Gardens Publishing. You can buy her non-fiction here at Jupiter Gardens Publishing.

2. Serenity Valle

Serenity began writing short stories when she was 7 years old. She illustrated these stories as well, even though now she admits she can’t draw. She turned from writing after the loss of a beloved notebook, and threw herself into drama and has acted in several roles on the stage and in front of a camera.  In 2013, Serenity started writing again full force and has two books currently available with another on the way April 1, 2014.  Serenity is the wife of an author. She is mum to 3 boys, currently aged 21, 17 and 2.  In the little free time she has between family and writing, she enjoys gardening, reading, crafting things, henna art, and watching such shows as “Burn Notice”, “Covert Affairs”, “Warehouse 13″, “Law & Order SVU”, “Touch”, “Kitchen Nightmares” and others.  Her works can be found at Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

3. Wendy Van Camp

Wendy Van Camp is the writer behind No Wasted Ink. She makes her home in Southern California with her husband and an australian shepard. Wendy enjoys travel, camping, bicycling, gourmet cooking and gemology. Currently, Wendy has published two short stories in literary magazines and is working on a steampunk science fiction trilogy.

Anyways… I hope you enjoyed learning a bit about Chris and I.  I cannot wait to see what answers we see for the next runners/authors!


The What-if Loop

Librarian Seeking …

‘Dear Hiring Manager’… it’s how most of my cover letters start.

I (Heather) did my morning job search again.  For those who don’t know, I’m a librarian.  It’s what helps me get to the nitty-gritty of history and culture that Chris and I write about.  I do love delving into research.  It doesn’t always matter what it’s about most of the time.  I can say without reserve that I’m a great researcher.  I love the challenge of it.  I love helping other people with it.
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Free Giveaway Winners and Upcoming Events

Selling books to a Dalek

Selling books to a Dalek

This Week So Far…

… has been difficult thus far, as anyone who has read our previous blog post can attest, but life must go on. In that spirit, I (Christopher) would like to announce the winners of two recent free giveaways. As I mentioned before, we are still going to award books to winners from the Comicpalooza giveaway… it just took us several weeks to announce the winners. Now, with Space City Con, our delay has been a few days, but that is due to our recent tragedy. In addition, I would like to advise our readers of our remaining 2013 appearances, as well as our budding 2014 calendar.
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Interviews and More Interviews

Authors Heather and Christopher

Heather and I (Christopher) have been interviewed again, and I thought I should provide links so all of our wonderful fans don’t have to go hunting for them. We have also been working on our 2013 calendar of appearances.

Salado Scottish Festival and Highland Games

Just a few weekends ago we attended the Salado Scottish Festival and Highland Games in Salado, Texas. What a time we had… As we were unpacking our truck to set up our tent at the fair grounds, Heather and I noticed that our tent frame had broken in transit, and without parts it was irreparable. With no tent frame, we rushed to the Walmart in Belton and then the Academy in Temple, before we found a tent we thought would work. After driving all the way back to Salado, we soon realized that this tent would never hold up to any sort of rain or wind (the roof came in layers, you see, with big openings where one layer overlayed another). This would not do… so we rushed back to Temple’s Academy and exchanged the tent. This one also, we found out, was not rated for wind or rain (you don’t learn these things unless you open the box and look at the directions inside… neither the website nor the box mentioned these important facts.) So, we used the roof and sides from the other tent (the broken one).

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Blog Hop: THE NEXT BIG THING

Welcome to the Cemetery

Welcome to the Cemetery

Welcome to our blog this weekend after Halloween 2012! We had a wonderful Halloween… how about you? Please feel free to comment. If you have found Heather’s or my Facebook profile, we will be posting pictures from our Halloween.

Blog Hop

Well, Heather and I (Christopher) decided to join a blog hop with other authors we know across the USA. We each have been answering the same questions about our latest books, and I will provide links to our fellow authors’ posts here:

Author

Ruth Davis Hayes

Kara Hash

Tracy Angelina Evans

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Winners of Goodreads Free Giveaway and More

2012 Halloween Decorations
2012 Halloween Decorations

“Let’s switch places for a while…”

I (Christopher) will try to keep this short.  We have five lucky winners to announce from our latest Goodreads Free Giveaway, and they are:

  • Alexander Porter – North Yorkshire, UK
  • Becky Cottrell – Philadelphia, PA
  • Gloria Snyder – Pittsburgh, PA
  • Susan Knopp – Columbus, OH
  • Michael Haskins – Calgary, Alberta

Congratulations to our winners!

We have also extended our free eBook giveaway on Goodreads.
We have several appearances coming up, including the Salado Scottish Festival… see our events page for more information.
Paranormal Haven has posted Halloween-related character interviews of personages from our series; there is also a free giveaway! In November, they will be posting an interview with us.
No Wasted Link will be interviewing me (Christopher) coming up December 19, while they will be featuring Heather in a writing space post on November 16.
That is all for now.  Thanks for your continued support!


2013 Event Calendar Published and Other News

New button sample for TriscellePublishing.com

New button sample for TriscellePublishing.com

Where to Start? 2012 Appearances

I (Christopher) have been running ragged trying to book events for next year, of course as some of you in the biz know, some places won’t start accepting applications (or send you invitations) until 3 to 3 months out. However, one venue is way on the ball… Comicpalooza, and they are in late May… yet at this moment, vendor applications are available on-line. Wow… So, to finish off this year’s appearances, we have the Magick Cauldron this weekend, followed by Sherwood Forest Celtic Music Festival and HPPD in September and the Salado Scottish Festival in November. Heather and I are both working to add some smaller venues somewhere in that time-frame, so keep checking your calendar. Some of you recall that we had previously listed the Austin Celtic Festival, but because of their small size and that most of their prior years’ vendors came back, they had no room for us; maybe next year. For dates and links, visit our events page on our website.
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Space City Con this Weekend and other News

Madness & Reckoning Front Cover
Madness & Reckoning Front Cover

MadReck

Events and Stuff

Lots of stuff coming up on the next few months, but nothing so impending as Space City Con! That’s right… *THIS* weekend is Space City Con, taking place in the Westin Galleria in Houston, Texas. Visit Space City Con for more information on the event. Heather and I will be signing books there, so bring yours if you’ve got ‘em, but if you don’t, that’s alright… we can sell you some of ours. Come out and enjoy the fun! Nichelle Nichols, R.A. Salvatore, and Breandán Ó Ciarraí, among many other talented actors, celebrities, artists, writers, and others will be there. Oh yeah… and us.

The Saturday after that… next weekend, we will be at the Magick Cauldron for another book-signing. If you don’t like big crowds, but you still would like to see us in Houston, this would be a good venue for you. Plus, you won’t have to buy a ticket to get in (like you would with Space City Con). Visit our Events page for more book signing events we will be attending this year and next.
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Comicpalooza and Two Free Giveaways

2011 Comicpalooza 3

Lots of stuff going on (when is there not? They are called “weekdays”), so I thought I would take a break from the madness that is the night before Comicpalooza setup (for us artists / authors / dealers) to catch my breath and catch all of you up on the goings on. So, as you have no doubt gathered, we have Comicpalooza going on… more on that later. Also, we not only have one, but two, free giveaways! More on that later as well. We have also released an updated Kindle version of Morrigan’s Brood: Morrigan’s Brood Book I, which coincides with the re-release of the print book through Triscelle Publishing’s new printer and distributor, Lightning Source. Anyway, to the news:
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Congrats to Our Winners!!!!

Our winners for our latest giveaway honoring the Rory Miggins Irish Stew Cookoff Benefit for the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Houston are:
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Morrigan’s Brood Re-Release Now in eBook Format

Morrigan's Brood: Morrigan's Brood Book I
Morrigan's Brood: Morrigan's Brood Book I

New Cover

Morrigan’s Brood: Morrigan’s Brood Book I Soon to be Released on Nook and Kindle

I (Christopher) must really like this graphic, because I have used it for the last three posts. Well, as we prepare ourselves to depart 2011 (those who have not already begun the new year… lucky), I realized there was one goal for 2011 that I had not yet accomplished. As you may recall, we recently re-released Morrigan’s Brood: Morrigan’s Brood Book I in print, but I had forgotten to do eBook versions. Well, today, this last day of 2011, I completed that goal. I just submitted Morrigan’s Brood r2 for Kindle and Nook platforms, although it may take up to two days for the eBooks to be on-sale. Still, I can brush my hands of this book stuff for a while… Who am I kidding… I have a novella to read, a re-release of Crone of War: Morrigan’s Brood Book II to revisit, and then I need to get Curse of Venus: Morrigan’s Brood Book IV ready for release. Uhhhh… no rest for the weary or the wicked.

Have a Happy New Year!
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Free Giveaway and Morrigan’s Brood r2 On Sale

Morrigan's Brood: Morrigan's Brood Book I
Morrigan's Brood: Morrigan's Brood Book I

New Cover

Morrigan’s Brood: Morrigan’s Brood Book I For Sale

Happy Boxing Day, and of course Merry Christmas, Happy Yule, and have a happy any number of other mid-winter holidays going on the world over, or just a happy day to those without such traditions. For this Boxing Day, and the aforementioned holidays, the authors of the Morrigan’s Brood Series (um… Heather and I… uh… Christopher) have coaxed our publisher into putting up five copies of the new second edition of Morrigan’s Brood: Morrigan’s Brood Book I, being officially released January 15, 2012. This second release, through Triscelle Publishing’s new printer and distributor, Lightning Source (LSI), presents an opportunity for our readers to purchase Morrigan’s Brood for a price lower than the original release. [Morrigan's Brood r1 sold for a retail price of $18.99 USD, whereas Morrigan's Brood r2 sells for a retail price of $15.99 USD]. The new release also includes new content, such as a map guide, a character guide, and more blood-drinker races, it has a new layout, and it received a bit of a brush-up.
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New Interview, New Edition, and New Events! It’s New, New, New, News!

Morrigan's Brood: Morrigan's Brood Book I

New Cover

Greetings friends, fans, followers, and friendly frequenters! I knew you were dying to hear new news from your friendly neighborhood authors of the Morrigan’s Brood Series. Well, we have been busy (my [Christopher] excuse for the vast stretch of time and space between now and when I wrote my last post), and I wanted to share three tidbits of news with you. In summary, re-release, interview, and events. That’s the news… thank you for reading!
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Upcoming Events

Well, we have lots of events planned for next year, and a few more this year. I (Christopher) have been adding this calendar to previous posts, but tonight, I would like to feature our event schedule. Mind you, this is not a complete list, and those that don’t say “confirmed” are just that, but we will make every effort to attend the events listed. In addition, we are always looking for more events to attend, so we hope to be adding to this list.

Anyway, look below for our tentative 2011 to 2012 list of events for we authors of the Morrigan’s Brood Series:
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Free Giveaway Winners and More

Free Giveaway 1, in honor of HPPD

We have winners! Heather and I tonight drew three lucky winners who will receive one signed book from our series, but each winner gets to choose which book she or he wins, whether it is Morrigan’s Brood, Crone of War, or Dark Alliance. As before, we will gladly cover the shipping for the prizes. Now, can anyone guess as to the identities of the winners? No? Alright… I shall write them. The winners of our free giveaway in honor of HPPD are:
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Welcome New Fans!

2011 HPPD

What an event! Heather and I (Christopher) just returned from HPPD, and we had fun! Good music (for the most part), good dancing, and great people. If you met up with us at HPPD, give us a cheer. Also, if you took pictures of us, please tag or or send us copies to post. We love pictures of us, not that we are narcissists, or anything like that. Thank you for stopping by our tent.
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Dark Alliance Now Available in eBook Format

Well, I (Christopher) may be crazy, and foolish, but I thought our readers with them thar electronicmajigger devices would like to get a jump on reading Dark Alliance, Morrigan’s Brood Book III before the rest of us low-tech folks can buy the paperback book. So, if you want to dive into the version of our book that is based on 1′s and 0′s and not ink and paper, then by all means journey to one of the links below to buy a copy. I’ll even throw in links to our other works available in eBook format. Here it goes…
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News Update Where have we Been?

Dark Alliance Cover Spread

Dark Alliance Cover SpreadIt seems Heather or I (Chris) need to write one of these “where are we now?” types of blog entries because we just aren’t avid bloggers. There… I said it. It’s not that we are lazy, yet you have noticed my use of contractions… I am Mr. Anti-Contraction, if you ask Heather, as I selectively edit out some contractions ;-). So no… we haven’t been lazy… just really really busy and focused. I am taking a break from burning my candle at both ends to at least provide some awareness as to where we are with this book three… Dark Alliance… coming out in September, as well as other stuff. Well, here it goes:
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And the winners are…!!!

The contest timeframe for entering is over, and we have drawn the winners.  As before, we combined entrants who stopped by our booth at ApolloCon and entrants who responded to our blog or Facebook announcements.  Without further ado, here are the winners:


ApolloCon, Contests, and Short-Stories

Wow… lots of stuff going on right now. First, ApolloCon starts today and goes through Sunday. We will be there, so stop by. For more information about ApolloCon, click here.

ApolloCon Contest

In honor of ApolloCon, Heather and I will be giving away two ARCs of Dark Alliance, Morrigan’s Brood Book III. For those unaware, ARC stands for Advanced Read Copy. These are pre-released books sent out to reviewers. The ARCs have not yet been copyedited or proofread. Still, winners will get a sneak peak at the new novel, which will be released September 1. If you win and you don’t already have Morrigan’s Brood or Crone of War, Morrigan’s Brood Book II, well, we will throw those in as well. All books will be signed by us, the authors.
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Morrigan’s Brood and MB: Crone of War eBooks now available

I am happy to announce that Morrigan’s Brood and Morrigan’s Brood: Crone of War are now available as eBooks. As of now, the Nook version of Morrigan’s Brood is for sale on the Barnes & Noble website, and both books are on sale on the Amazon.com website. All of these eBooks list for $1.99. Crone of War should be posted for sale soon on B&N. I have also listed the Nook version of both eBooks on Goodreads. I will be working to get these books on the iBookstore and Sony platforms, but that will take some time.

Enjoy!


Trials and eBook-lations

Wow, has this been a learning experience! A show of hands – who has put their own eBooks together (versus paying someone to do it for you)? My hand can now join yours. Oh joy! Thus far, I have “successfully” created eBook files for Morrigan’s Brood on the Nook and Kindle platforms. I have uploaded both files, and I am waiting for their review process to progress. Hopefully, this means that those of you with Nooks and Kindles can read Morrigan’s Brood by the end of this week!
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eBooks Coming Soon and other news

Well, I (Chris) have been working behind the scenes getting ready to release eBooks for both Morrigan’s Brood and Morrigan’s Brood: Crone of War. I am in the process of acquiring eBook publishing software, and I have been setting up accounts with various eBook distributors, such as PubIT (B&N), Kindle (Amazon), Sony, iTunes, Smashwords, and Goodreads, to name a few. We have also acquired a bundle of ISBNs, so hopefully the file conversion process doesn’t take me too long. I have already converted Morrigan’s Brood to HTML, so eBook shouldn’t be far off. Perhaps in a week or two, both books will be available in your favorite eBook format.
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Where Have We Been? Where are we going?

Cover art for Dark Alliance; Morrigan's Brood book III

Cover art for Dark Alliance; Morrigan's Brood book IIIThe answer to that is running around like two chickens with our heads cut off in a state of pandalierium. Rather, it is a state that is reminiscent of a lady in a muumuu with pink curlers in her hair. Yeah, you know her…. the one who shows up in a muumuu or her robe and slippies at the liberry demanding summer reading program prizes for her massive brood of 18 children; the number of children varies depending on how good the prizes are that year. The very one our characters will refuse to attack because … well, they have their limits. ;)

Yeah, I know you’re wondering where this came from and where is that crazy Heather going with this.

Usually lack of sleep means an upcoming festival, con, or celebration. Well, at the moment we’re sandwiched between two.

Anyways, last weekend we were at Scarborough Faire at Tyler and Lisa Spence’s wedding. It was a beautiful ceremony and a lovely day if you’re into humidity. However, we did love seeing our friends become husband and wife, and we bumped into other friends, our editor, Sally Aalderink, who is one of the villagers at Scarborough Faire (her son Ian is also a villager, though we only caught his back from a distance), and Kyle and Marita Beth Caruthers, who run East Wind Games and Pendragon Costumes at the Faire. Merriment and camaraderie was had by all!

This weekend is Comicpalooza. We’ll be in Artists Alley (booth AA5) near people who are better known than us. We are excited and beyond thrilled to be in a few panels as well.

5/27/11

Tips and Tricks for writing your own novel – 3-4 PM rm 310 A

5/28/11

Morrigan’s Brood: Introduction 4 to 5 PM rm 320 E

5/29/11

How to Start your own publishing company – 10-11 AM rm 320 E

Sci-fi What Fantasy Who 1- 2 PM rm 320 E

Otherwise, we’ll be at our booth, and if we’re not there, you’ll get to chat up our awesome friends, Crystal and Mark (who work with Heather at the liberry). We will have our usual freebies (bookmarks, postcards, and whatnot) and not-freebies (books), but this weekend, we will have some bonus items for sale: signed Khanada Taylor artwork from our first book and The Dawnstone Tales by Ruth Hays!

Hope to see you at the Con (it will be on… and yes, a lack of sleep brought on that horrible joke).


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