I wrote them today, I wrote those two awesome little words that every author covets with every fibre of their being and I did it! I did it! I did it! After a 3500 word marathon yesterday and 4500 word marathon today, I managed to get to that lovely place where I could joyfully say “THE END” and mean it, Truly, Madly Deeply! Yes, yes, yes, the deed is done, book three is officially over!
Ok, maybe it’s full of typos, anachronisms and inaccuracies but let’s not stray away from the point here folks; it’s time to stick a fork in it cos it’s done, done, doned! (yes I said doned, that’s how much I want to stress that this f&cker is in the past!
Don’t get me wrong now, I loved every minute of it, and I will go in (at a date that is not today) and clean up that shit like it’s grime under the rim of the toilet bowl, but I will stop here to emphasize just how very done it is! Beginning, middle and end, done! In the famous words of the venerable Ali G, booyakasha! Kati can chill for a few days before I find new ways to ruin her life!
Anyhoo, I shall now proceed to curb my enthusiasm by doing something else and get back to work in the morrow for my eyes have bled copiously today. I even wondered whether I should’ve taken more screen time to write this post, but it had to be done! Now I’m going to grope around in the dark for the shower and not look at a screen for maybe… twenty minutes!
This week I’m very excited to announce the publication of an article I wrote in December for Vamped.org. The article is about the Countess’s public perception from the time of her arrest and trial to the present and closely examines the birth and evolution of the blood bathing myth with which she has become synonymous.
I loved writing this one as it was strictly historical and it involved revisiting some of my earlier work and fascination with the Witch-hunt hysteria which gripped the western world for over 200 hundred years. You’ll have to read it to see the correlation.
Enjoy and let me know your thoughts.
The second book in the Affliction Series is now finally finished! Ok, not completely finished but in second draft form anyway. It is currently in the capable hands of my trusted betas and will soon also be reaching my editors.
Initially I’d planned on calling it Báthory’s Legacy, and then I thought I should not focus so much on the Countess so I settled on Vampire Legacy, a title with which I was initially pleased cos it seemed to fit. Until of course I searched on Amazon and Goodreads and discovered that there’s approximately another three budgillion books with the words ‘Vampire’ and/or ‘Legacy’ somehow embroiled in their titles. So book two is currently on its way to completion but lacking a name.
This disturbs me, I need to brainstorm.
As soon as the brainstorm has abated, the book should be ready and hitting the e-shelves no later than May.
The next item on the agenda will be the cover, I’ll be posting updates on that too, as soon as I have a few samples from my designer.
I’ve been thinking a lot about my blurb, and have come to the conclusion that it needs to be short and sweet as well as enticing and captivating, so how do you encapsulate an entire book in one paragraph without missing anything? Well it’s kinda hard but this is what I’ve come up with so far. It could potentially be changed when the book is finalized, but I think the gist is there.
The year is 1609 and fourteen year old Kati lives with her mother in the outskirts of Csejthe Castle in Hungary, the home of the powerful Countess Erzsébet Báthory. Isolated on a hill inside a dense forest the castle is surrounded by vicious rumors of black magic, disappearances and murder. When the Countess personally shows up at Kati’s house looking to offer her a job in the castle, Kati is excited to be going off on an adventure and by the possibility of helping her mother break out of the poverty that threatens their wellbeing. Once at the castle however, Kati quickly discovers that all the rumors were true and girls that are brought here are going missing at an alarming rate while the Countess is behind it all, drinking the blood of her victims and torturing them for her pleasure. Finding herself in a desperate situation Kati realizes she must uncover the centuries of secrets behind the Countess’s deranged behavior and stop her before it’s too late for her and everyone she loves.
So even though it’s still a bit early (my book comes out in February/March of next year) I have gone ahead and commissioned the cover. As I mentioned in an earlier post, I used 99designs.com and was presented with a multitude of designs from a number of artists that shortlisting them was actually very difficult in a couple of instances.
The winning design was done by a very talented graphic designer called Lilien Hoffman and the reason I selected it was because it captured the essence of my book very simply and very effectively. I feel it portrays mystery, history and vampirism without focusing on the clichés that Elizabeth Bathory has come to be identified with.
Without further ado I present you with my awesome new cover!
The twins had been brought to the Countess during a bad harvest year when they were just ten years old. They were poorly dressed but neat and clean and their blonde hair was done in two long and thin braids on either side of their faces, which reached all the way to their tummies and tied off with a piece of red raffia. They stood in front of her tightly holding hands looking solemnly at the ground. A tear on the cheek of one of them fell to the ground. They were the mirror image of each other and though at first glance they looked as identical as two peas in a pod, on closer examination the face of one was slightly rounder than the other and her eyes were a fraction closer together. The miserable image of their emaciated father stood behind them pathetically blabbering but she had mostly blocked him out; these peasants were all the same, always suffering… She remembered him saying something about them being too poor to support eleven children and how eternally grateful they would be if she could take them into her employ. They didn’t even need to get paid, he said, just fed and sheltered in exchange for their hard work. Apparently they were very hard working and she could always use a new pair of hands or two at the castle the way they seemed to drop off lately. Flies were hardier than some of the people that worked for her.
Reaching into the folds of her ample skirts she withdrew a small pouch with gold in. Her large rings obstructed her fingers as she tried to get a coin out. Such vulgarity the exchange of money but an inevitable necessity. She threw it at the father, who greedily grabbed it despite his earlier protestations, and agreed to take the girls who had both started to cry now, but quite modestly at least. Clutching the coin tightly in his hands he knelt down, hugged them and told them to be good and do as the Countess said. Quite a touching little scene she thought to herself but it was time he went on his way and they got to work.
“Darvulia! Darvulia where are you?”
The portly witch rushed into the chamber drying her hands on her apron.
“Darvulia we have new help, won’t you please show them to their quarters” she said as the corner of her mouth formed a little wry smile.