The Writing Adventures of The Undead Duo–Julie Hutchings and Kristen Strassel

The Night Songs Collection 1-3 Box Set is Now Available!

Today’s Brew: Hook up an IV of coffee and spike that bitch. Today’s my last day on the movie I’ve been working on, and from the looks of the scene list, it may be the longest day in movie making history. That’s fine, we’re having a party.

by Kristen

You know what is the gift that keeps on giving? Get your mind out of the gutters. It’s vampires. Who else can give you the gift of eternal life?  If you’re going to live forever, you’re going to need something to read. A lot of something. So I would love to offer you the first three books in The Night Songs Collection. It’s like a one way ticket to Las Vegas without the hangover, or the goons chasing after after you to collect on your gambling debts.  It’s debauchery in the comfort of your own home.

Because the Night, Night Moves, and We Own the Night all available in one pretty package!

Because the Night, Night Moves, and We Own the Night all available in one pretty package!

It’s only 3.99 until 12.31.14! You can get your very own copy here. Oh, and another thing, while we’re talking about gifts…you can buy an ebook as a gift on Kindle and have it delivered whenever you want. There’s eight days of Hanukkah, twelve days of Christmas…and at least a handful of days of Festivus.

This is what you get. Don’t say I never gave you anything.

Because the Night:
Immortal Dilemma is the hottest band in the Las Vegas vampire rock scene. They draw insatiable fans from around the globe, thanks to a supernatural attraction called Bloodlust. Tristan craved such an opportunity to fill his empty mortal life, and now he has eternity to earn his place along the legends of rock n roll debauchery.

Callie always feared that Tristan’s excesses would get him into trouble, but she never thought they’d lead him to immortality. To reconnect with him, she must weave her way through a world not only she had no idea existed, but does not welcome her.

Blade turned down a spot in Immortal Dilemma after learning what he must sacrifice for that lifestyle. He finds Callie a refreshing change from the girls in the vampire rock scene. When Callie drags Blade back into the world of Immortal Dilemma, his resistance drives her into the waiting arms of Tristan, who shows her the true meaning of Bloodlust.

But the very things that Callie fights so hard to save are the very things that fight to destroy her.

Night Moves:
Melanie Vaughn’s job ruined everything. Her social life, nonexistent. Her relationship with her boyfriend, a hostile roommate situation. She resolves to fix everything one snowy afternoon, but instead comes home to discover her boyfriend is already exploring other options. Blonder, bustier options. Rage drives Melanie to do the unthinkable.

When Soul Divider was on the top of the world, so was Ryder Maddox. When the band faded into obscurity, Ryder’s luck plummeted with it. In a last ditch effort to rekindle the band’s heyday, Soul Divider teams up with powerful vampire clan leader, Talis de Rancourt. In return for her services, the band pays the ultimate price for never ending fame.

Now on the run, Melanie meets Ryder in a middle of nowhere hotel. She never expected her teenage rock star crush to be as lost and as in need of a companion as she is. Their connection is all consuming, even before they find they share another kinship: murder.

The newly turned vampires in Soul Divider still have a lot to learn. The police and public begin to connect the girls that go missing or die in sync with the band’s tour schedule. Back at home, clues are also adding up against Melanie as well. Between constant media coverage and unrelenting attention from the authorities, Melanie and Ryder find themselves in uncharted territory.

We Own The Night:
Callie Chabot would stop at nothing to save her ex-boyfriend Blade Bennett from the clutches of vampire clan leader Talis de Rancourt, even if means becoming immortal herself. What she doesn’t know is that Blade has already defeated Talis, and he’s waiting for Callie in the afterlife.

Now Callie only has her creator, Tristan Trevosier, to turn to for guidance. But he’s too wrapped up in the debauchery of the Las Vegas rock scene to give a damn about the particulars of being undead. That’s enough to drive Callie crazy on its own, but female vampires are automatic clan leaders.

Not only does Callie have no idea how to wrangle a vampire clan, but her would-be followers have more to gain from her failure. They instead choose to follow Blade–and he’s hell-bent on making Callie pay for her bad decisions. Since he took out the existing clan leader, that automatically puts him at the helm of what should be Callie’s new clan.

That’s when seasoned rogue vampire, Cash Logan, shows up, shrouded in magic and mystery. No one is sure which side Cash is on, but Callie needs to take a chance on the one vampire who is willing to give her the answers she needs, no matter how dark and frightening they may be. Callie must trust her instincts and form alliances that may backfire. Cash shows Callie that playing nice is no longer an option, and that fixing her wrongs won’t always make everything right.

To take control of herr clan, Callie must look to her rival to see exactly what makes her a leader.


TODAY’S BREW: Trader Joe’s 4 pack sampler. All four. Shut up.

By Julie

It’s gifty time, Christmas fans. Start with this fresh new werewolf fantasy.

The Blood Talisman cover

Alex Jacobs gets bitten by a werewolf, and that’s only the beginning of his problems. When his wife is kidnapped and turned into someone he doesn’t recognize anymore, he not only struggles with letting her go but, also with saving her life.  Selene is a powerful witch that not only teaches Alex the ways of the wolf but, also teaches him about restraint and purpose. Her shy innocence quickly attracts him to her and he struggles with being torn between two women. Their feelings for each other are constantly put to the test as a battle for the blood talisman, the key to immortality, is fought for power to some and a way to live forever for others. It is quickly learned that immortality comes at a price to all of humanity.


 But if you don’t win, GO GET IT HERE:

The Blood Talisman on Amazon:

Or for chrissakes, add it on Goodreads:


Kim's headshot


About Kim:

Kim Culpepper is a horror lover! She is the author of The Blood Talisman, several short stories, and also runs Dark Child Create, a company the designs custom book covers. Her work has been published in Sanitarium Magazine, The Opening Line Literary Zine, and more.


Kim is a native of Colombus, Mississippi where she lives with her wonderful husband, two beautiful kids, and two mischievous cats.  Most of her writing is based in the south because she enjoys writing characters with accents and the South has plenty of people to inspire that.


Kim on Twitter:

Kim’s Blog:


Kim on Goodreads:


Join the book buzz using hashtag #BloodTalisman



Excerpt from Kat Daemon’s KILLING DARKNESS

Today’s brew: I’m pretty much about to take a coffee bubble bath

by Kristen

Kat Daemon’s decided to take on the biggest, baddest villain of all. Lucifer. If anyone has a story to tell, it’s this guy. Anyone who can run Hell as long as he had is someone worth having a beer with, and definitely reading about. KILLING DARKNESS is the second book in the series, and this story features Brielle, his daughter.  Here’s the blurb:

Powerful, beautiful, and covered in scars…

Brielle, born of a mortal-immortal union between a human mother and the devil Himself, is prophesied to be the one capable of turning the tide in the brewing apocalypse.

As Brielle’s thirtieth birthday draws near, she strikes a deal with the devil and sets out on a journey of self discovery. In an attempt to comprehend what it means to be fully human, Brielle finds herself at the door of her therapist, Adam. Blurring relationship lines and questioning everything, she quickly learns that humanity, vulnerability, and love are things she isn’t prepared to handle. Distancing herself, she finds shelter in her father’s arms once more.

 Two worlds are about to collide…

When the archangel Michael suddenly takes a deep interest in Brielle, Lucifer begins to understand that his greatest opponent is curious about more than just her choice. Michael’s fall will be Lucifer’s rise and only Brielle holds the key to making it happen.

With a human, an angel, and a demon all tearing at her heart, Brielle realizes it’s time to decide if her loyalties lie with Michael in Heaven or her father in Hell.


Pick up your copy on Amazon (Killing Darkness is available in Kindle Unlimited) and keeping reading for an excerpt!

“Venti iced coffee, sweetened with room,” I said to the barista who marked up my plastic cup with a black marker.

“It’s thirty degrees outside. Wouldn’t you prefer something a little warmer?”

I jumped as Lucas’ rich voice buzzed in my ear. You would think by now I would be used to him appearing out of nowhere. He turned his attention to the barista. “Let’s see… I’ll take a cappuccino, hot, with an extra shot of espresso,” he glanced down at the barista’s name tag, “thanks, Lexi.” He threw her a flirtatious wink.

I watched as the girl swept a loose brown bang behind her ear, unable to hide her smile or the blush that blossomed in her cheeks.

“Um… name? For the cup?” The girl’s blush deepened. She was probably in her early twenties, the same age my mother was when Lucas had worked his magic on her.

“Darth Vader and Princess Leah,” I snapped, tossing down a twenty and pulling my ever so charming father over to the coffee bar. “What are you doing here?” I groaned.

“Coffee. Same as you.”

“You’re so difficult sometimes.”

“I could say the same of you. You’ve been very neglectful at work lately, leaving early every day.”

“You know what I’m doing.”

“I do know, that doesn’t mean I approve of it.”

“I think I’m a little old to be seeking your approval.”

“Yet you do, desperately. So, let me in. Why is it so important that this Adam fellow knows what you are?”

I sighed, it didn’t matter if I told him a lie. He already knew my thoughts. He was being courteous in allowing me to tell him first. “Mom knew about you.”

“Different situation entirely, and I had no intention to ever tell her, circumstances just unraveled a bit.”

“You mean Michael ratted on you.”

“If that’s the version you choose to believe.”

“But eventually, she did know. She knew, and she accepted you. I’d like to know one person, just one, knows what I am before I change for good.”

The moment was broken by the barista placing our drinks in front of us, along with my change. Tossing the bills and coins into the tip jar, I noticed on my father’s cup she had written a number and drawn a heart. What a fool. Heavily, I walked with my drink over to the counter and added some half and half. Watching the cream swirl into the deep brown liquid was like watching a magician. It distracted me, but only for a moment.

“Brielle.” Lucas locked his long fingers around my wrist.

I looked up into his face, a beautiful man, not a day older than thirty-five looked back. Jet black hair, warm creamy skin. With the exception of the eye color, we looked like siblings. I wondered then, would I ever appear older than my father? The thought was startling. Lucas squeezed harder to bring me back to reality.

“Just show him who you are.” His blue eyes glistened with what I wanted to believe was understanding.

“I’ve already shown him how I can read minds. He dismissed it.”

“You need to be bolder.”

“What would you have me do? Slice up my skin and show him how fast I can heal? I don’t think I have a patch left for that circus trick.”

Lucas rubbed a thumb over the scar on my wrist. My bottom lip quivered in response. I would not cry in front of him. He hated when I appeared weak. As much as I wanted to blame him for my scars, they were mine and mine alone.

“All right Brielle, I think you can handle a little more power.” He held up the keys to my Lexus. “Take your doctor for a ride.”

About Kat Daemon

kat-daemon-1Kat Daemon grew up in New York where her imagination always seemed to get the best of her. When she’s not hanging with demons, she’s usually armed with a strong cup of coffee and dreaming up her next tormented character. She is the author of the The Darkness Saga and The Blood Clan Chronicles.


You can find out more about Kat and her books at

You Don’t Belong Here

Today’s Brew: Water. I’m setting my alarm for 4 AM and calling it a night

by Kristen

Yes, I am using Running Home’s catch phrase.

You may have noticed I’ve been pretty quiet for the last few months.  Or maybe not.  That’s cool, too.  I could tell you I’ve been busy, and that’s definitely true. I’ve been on two movies back to back, which is something I’ve never done before.  Movie days start well before the sun comes up, and last 12 to 14 hours.  When I get home, if I still remember the English language, I’ll work on book stuff.

But the real reason is, I haven’t felt like I’ve belonged here.

Kristen, you might be thinking, it’s your blog! How can you not belong?  When Julie and I started Deadly Ever After, it was to be about our writing adventures.  For a long time, we travelled the same road, and met many of you along the way.

Then that road stopped working for me.  I forged a new path, took my rights to my books back, and started completely over. I don’t do anything differently than a writer with a publisher, I just cut out the middle man.  My books get the full treatment—editing, formatting, design, and marketing.  I’m the director of the ship. It’s a ton of work, and I love it.

It’s completely reinvigorated my passion for writing. I can write my stories on my terms. All the stories I was told would never find an audience by traditional publishing found readers that can’t wait to read the next installment of the series. It’s the most amazing feeling in the world.

My writing schedule became pretty demanding.  After all, we’re supposed to write every day, right? Or else we don’t get to call ourselves writers, and other rules that don’t matter if they don’t work for you.  You are a creative because rules give you hives, and you see the need for something that’s not there. Anyway, a lot of you just won Nano. Fuck yes. Now do it again.  I try to write every day, and it’s like exercise. The more you do it, the better you get at it. That means I can write a lot of words in a short amount of time. Today I’ve already written about 2000 words, and I’m going back for more. Once those words made sense, and they were edited and in a pretty package, there was no reason to wait to put them out.  So I did.

“My God, another one?” “Do you do anything but write?” “Do you sleep?”  Maybe some people were joking, but I got the message, loud and clear. It was too much. And it fucking hurt. I got to the point that I was embarrassed to talk about new releases on Twitter. I didn’t even blog about some of them on release day.  Why? Because I didn’t feel like the posts fit in. So I do what I do anytime I feel uncomfortable. I withdrew.

The marketing aspect of publishing fascinates me.  I can’t math to save my life, but I love stats. I could talk about it for hours.  I started to seek out like-minded writers. I knew what I was doing wasn’t all that unusual in indie publishing. Sure, having multiple releases a year in traditional publishing is rare. But there are many big name indie authors putting out four to six books a year. This year, I had some inventory I was sitting on (thanks, traditional publishing), but next year, it will be a challenge to keep up with new releases.  That doesn’t mean I’m going to slack off. It means I’m going to work harder. I’m really proud of what I’ve accomplished since July, and I can’t wait to see where the journey takes me.

I want to share that with everyone, because I know that some of you have questions about being an indie author, and I wouldn’t have succeeded if people didn’t help me.  But I’m not always sure if this is the sort of thing that people want to read about here. It’s still all writing, it’s just a different road.  Even if it’s not your thing, I’d love to send you a post card.


How Wearing a Tutu Was a Business Decision by Julie

TODAY’S BREW: Chestnut Praline Latte. (It has replaced the Peppermint Mocha for me. Also, I’m just drinking my crappy home coffee.)

By Julie 

The Undead Duo had our first book signing TOGETHER this weekend at Penny Watson’s Holiday Book Bash. It was also a Christmas party, so there were gorgeous alcoholic drinks AND NO I WAS NOT THE FIRST ONE TO BUY ONE but maybe the second.

But this was a business event. Forty authors, lots of publicity around Boston for it.

And I, Julie Hutchings, knew ahead of time I would be out of my element. Here’s why:

  • I knew two people there. Everyone else knew each other.
  • It was a romance writers’ party. I don’t typically read romance, I don’t write it, and forgive me for saying so, but I don’t come across as one either.
  • Everyone there would have a half dozen books published and know self publishing from the inside out. I have two out, the rest working their way through traditional publishing and small press.

Kristen has told me some of what to expect at a Romance Writers of America function, and I knew it wasn’t necessarily my crowd. But that has never stopped me. In a crowd that size with names more known than mine, a person could easily fade into the background.

Operation: Stand Out Like A Sore Thumb

Trying to fit in doesn’t work for me. Never has and I don’t want it to be something I ever do. Being as ME as possible is what works for me.

How to Be Julie For Business:

  • I bought a goddamn tutu for this event. Go big or go home. THIS IS IT (lovely lady pictured not me):

my tutu

It was my intention to walk in there and have all eyes on me. No shyness allowed.

  • We took the first table, right next to the food, across from the bar.
  • When Penny’s microphone died, I stepped up in front of the room full of strangers and said in my voice which is WOW, “PENNY IS DOING A GIVEAWAY NOW.” Then I announced the names for the giveaway with her.
  • I showed up with party favors. If my book wasn’t the thing sought after that day, I was going to make them remember it. So I thought of the thing that makes my book stand out to EVERYONE which is the strong scent theme. (The Shinigami vampire scent is tailored to appeal to specific people.) I made tiny stockings with a malted milkball and French Vanilla marshmallow “shooter,” a candy cane Hershey kiss, a Christmas cookie tea light with a sticker on the bottom that has a quote from Running Away on it, and a peppermint tea bag with a bookmark and all my links attached. “This tastes and smells like Running Home reads,” I said and handed them out to everybody. I didn’t wait for people to come to me, I went to them.
  • I STOOD UP. I didn’t sit behind our table full of books and stuff. I stood up and spoke to people. I did it first. I said, “Hi, I’m Julie,” and shook hands with a big smile on my face. (Sidenote: The next sentence out of everyone’s mouths was “Your tutu is amazing” or something close to. Easy conversation starter.)
  • When talking about going through a small press, I was loud and proud about having been the only woman published through Books of the Dead Press that summer, and still only in the company of a handful. It makes me different, special, and I’m proud of it. (There’s no such thing as a man’s world, baby.)

You know what? My plan worked. I sold books, gained some new followers, made friends, learned a bunch. I owned the crowd the only way I know how.

Writing a book is hard, publishing a book is harder, selling it is hardest. So sell what makes it unlike anything else out there: YOU. This works in all walks of life. Find the thing that makes you like nobody else in the world, and the thing that makes your product that way, and make the world know it. Be proud. Be you.

Come See Us At The Book Bash!

Today’s brew: There’s some sort of Christmas Cookie martini thing that’s going to be at the book bash tomorrow. If you come, you can have one too.

Tomorrow is Julie and I’s very first book signing together!  Come see us and 40 other authors in Needham, MA.  Admission is free. There’s a cash bar, so you know that’s going to make everything one hundred percent more entertaining.  I made my infamous drunken peppermint brownies.  There will be a raffle for some awesome prizes, and oh yeah, books for sale!

If you’re not sure it’s us, I’ll be the one with the ombre hair that fades to bright pink. Julie will be in the tutu. So basically, everything you ever expected.

I hope to see you there!

Penny Watson's HOLIDAY BASH new ad



Congratulations to Kat! This book sounds amazing!

Originally posted on Tammy Farrell:

Killing Darkness, the long awaited sequel to Kat Daemon’s Taming Darkness is finally here and I can’t wait to read it! *THROWS ALL THE CONFETTI!*


Powerful, beautiful, and covered in scars…

Powerful, beautiful, and covered in scars…

Brielle, born of a mortal-immortal union between a human mother and the devil Himself, is prophesied to be the one capable of turning the tide in the brewing apocalypse.

As Brielle’s thirtieth birthday draws near, she strikes a deal with the devil and sets out on a journey of self discovery. In an attempt to comprehend what it means to be fully human, Brielle finds herself at the door of her therapist, Adam. Blurring relationship lines and questioning everything, she quickly learns that humanity, vulnerability, and love are things she isn’t prepared to handle. Distancing herself, she finds shelter in her father’s arms once more.

Two worlds are about to collide…


View original 172 more words

Getting in Your Face About the Holidays by Julie

TODAY’S BREW: Breakfast Blend. It’s December!

By Julie

Thanksgiving was great. Busy as hell and totally not busy at the same time. Never made it to the freezing cold parade, which is a big deal here in America’s Hometown, but me and the boys went to the Lego store to celebrate Ben getting an Academic Excellence award and Sam just being awesome. Had gourmet grilled cheese, listened to Christmas songs and were generally goofy together. And having everyone together for Turkey Day was lovely. We truly were all able to forget all of our troubles just be happy together with Gramma and Grandpa. It was fantastic to hang out the entire day at home on Black Friday and even have Tim home until noon. That has NEVER happened. Then the kids and I blew off the rest of the weekend at book stores, toy stores, the park, an awesome off-season drive down to Cape Cod and watching movies. Perfect.


First off, if you’re one of those ball-busting I can’t wait until it’s all over folks, good for you. Don’t ruin it for everyone else. Take a kid’s name off the tree at the mall, buy the kid a coat and a toy and shhhhhhut up. Nobody WANTS to be miserable…. make an effort not to be. This isn’t me being preachy, this is me demanding a good time.

My demands of having a good time get me in trouble. For instance, we are poor. Still buying Christmas presents though. Still adopting a kid or two for charity. Still bring the kids out because it makes them happy. Still got a tutu for Penny Watson’s Holiday Book Bash this weekend in Needham, MA. Because screw it. This was the hardest year of my life, and that’s saying something. I don’t generally say I had a bad DAY even, let alone a bad year, but hay-zoos, I’m not in denial. Regardless, bad circumstances won’t determine my future, and they sure as hell won’t determine my present. I live like I’m on a constant sitcom that may turn into a tragedy at any second. But it’s never dull and I’ve accomplished something by living through it some days. And at the end of that day I still am surrounded by lots of love.

When you’re aggravated about shopping, snow, your bank account and all the things you don’t have, remember the things you do have and the things you could make happen. Remember what Christmas means to YOU. If it means nothing, change it. Make everything mean something. What else are you doing here?

(I don’t mean you, Greg. What are you doing here?)

In the meantime, come drink with Kristen and I and 40 other authors this Saturday if you’re in town.

Hi. My name is Kat, and I’m an #Indie author…


Love this from Kat!!

Originally posted on Kat Daemon:

About two years ago I had a talk with a coworker, as my eyes glazed over with tears. I had just gotten a rejection on a full and it crushed me. My coworker’s advice was, “Just self publish. Isn’t it more important that readers have your work, and you continue to write than you spend another two years querying?”

I rolled my eyes. He didn’t get it.

I dismissed his advice, and got back on the horse. I revised my work. I went to workshops. I made connections. I signed with a small press, who eventually led me astray. I self published that book, to “save it”. I flew down to New Orleans and pitched my work to agents and publishers that included the big five– and got full requests!

I was learning. I was motivated. I was hungry for that contract.

But– I wasn’t writing.

When I’m not writing…

View original 945 more words

What You Don’t Get To Say

Today’s Brew:  All the coffee

Wednesday’s my day to blog, but I’ll be at work before many of you wake up tomorrow morning, so I’ll posting tonight.

November 26 is a hard day for me.  It’s the third anniversary of my mom’s passing.  I had been her caretaker. She’d had cancer and survived, but she never quite was back to one hundred percent.  But after watching another friend go through almost the exact same thing with losing a parent, I know now without a doubt the cancer treatment was too much for her. It shut her body down. Things were good until one day everything changed.  She spent thirty seven days in medical ICU, and I was there for all of them.  I made decisions I never thought I’d be capable of during that time.

My mom was an English teacher, she loved watching cooking shows even when it was just Julia Child on PBS.  She used to take us to concerts before I could drive, and always opened our home to my friends when they needed a safe place to be.  She liked Will Ferrell movies, politics, and animals.

But I never told her I’d started writing again.  It was too new when she got sick, and I wasn’t ready to talk about it yet.  Once I realized it might be important, it was too late.  But she loved that Julie and I used to sit in the middle of the living room floor, watching Headbangers Ball, passing a notebook back and forth writing the most ridiculous stories.  She supported me when I announced that I was moving to Las Vegas because I had this dream I wanted to write a book about.  It took me eleven years from that moment, but I fucking did it.

The more I wrote, the more I realized it helped me figure things out.  I didn’t have an easy transition into orphanhood, I had to move out of the apartment I shared with my mom because I couldn’t afford it.  I wasn’t able to work for a couple months, and had no paystubs.  I bounced around a bit before I found this apartment, because I wasn’t able to make a decision. I wasn’t ready.  And it didn’t matter what catastrophe I was facing, I just couldn’t do it.

Some of this might sound awfully familiar to you if you’ve just read Silent Night.  Silent Night is my story. Some parts of it are pure fiction, of course. But a lot of it is not.  And I am still waiting for Aidan to show up.  But the feeling completely fucking lost at the holidays, that’s all me. I might be a little quiet on these big days.  A lot of things have got easier, but the days that are all about family are ones that I haven’t figured out how to deal with yet.





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