Deadly Ever After

Archive for the tag “silent night”

The Night Songs Collection is on SALE!

Today is:

by Kristen

Happy Chocolate Chip Pizza Party Day!  Here’s where vampire month gets fun.  If you haven’t checked out my vampire books, now is the time!  Every title in The Night Songs Collection is 99 cents each through May 20.  Some of these have never been on sale before.

night songs sale 2

Because the Night: http://amzn.to/1H6H5WO

Sex, Blood And Rock n’ Roll 

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: http://amzn.to/1EKmS7A

We bonded in darkness, over darkness.

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: http://amzn.to/1ICbnX7

The Ultimate Manipulation.
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.
A Master of Deception.
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 her clan, Callie must look to her rival to discover exactly what makes her a leader.
Silent Night: http://amzn.to/1PKnxfk

This Christmas isn’t about celebration for eighteen-year-old Kyndra, it’s about survival. Grieving the loss of her grandmother and struggling with the indifference of her family, Kyndra now splits her time between her dead-end mall job, her junkie ex-boyfriend’s bed, and the streets. Longing to be close to her grandmother one more time, she wanders into Christmas Eve mass and prays she’ll find the place she belongs. Home.

Aidan isn’t ready to let go of the past either, even though he’s had nearly three hundred years to do it. He chronicles the search for the reincarnation of his beloved wife as the vampire romance author Allison Duprois. Aidan knows the wife he mourns is out there, but fears writing their story is as close as he will get to her.

At Christmas Eve mass, he finally finds her. Alone, with no place to go.

Aidan brings Kyndra into his home, and gives her the safety, comfort and love she longs for. Though he gives her second chances she never thought she’d have, Kyndra still can’t get over Aidan’s mysterious past. Not to mention that he claims that he’s a vampire. Life alone on the streets is dangerous enough without handing her trust and love to the wrong person. Can Aidan break through the walls around Kyndra’s hardened heart to convince her that she belongs with him, forever?

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A Little Piece of Silent Night

Today’s Brew:  Too much Diet Coke. My face feels shriveled.

by Kristen

Guys, I’m working on a movie this week. The hours are grueling, it’s in another state, and my alarm is perma-set for 3 AM. I know. Boo hoo. But that’s my excuse for being too exhausted to have thoughts or opinions. Julie was all prolific and I’m trying not to drool. Okay, I do have thoughts and opinions and they’re all I WANT TO GO TO BED.

But next week I have a new book coming out, so that’s pretty cool.  Silent Night is another installment of The Night Songs Collection. It’s my Christmas book that I bill as Pretty Woman meets Dracula at Midnight Mass. It’s a standalone story that shares the vampire mythology and family tree, but if you haven’t read the rest of the series (and if not, why not? I mean, you’re here. You like me. Hopefully. Maybe then I could be working on my own damn movie.) you can pick this one up and not be lost at all.

I’ll tell you more about it next week, when I get to see daylight, but for now, enjoy an excerpt, and if you like what you see…order a copy!

Silent Night Kristen Strassel

Silent Night Kristen Strassel

Aidan had finally settled in a oxblood red recliner. The thing looked ancient, but appropriate for the rest of the room. “Would you like some tea?”

“Sure. You’re into tea, aren’t you?” He’d had it at the diner, too. I didn’t know any men who drank it.

“I am. I like the variety.” He didn’t stay seated for long.

“Don’t you drink coffee?” Somedays, I would probably bleed coffee.

“Too bitter. I like sweet things,” he called from the kitchen. I didn’t feel the need to follow him. I went back to looking at his books. A Christmas Story would be on all night and all day. I knew it by heart anyway, I didn’t really have to pay attention.

For a seemingly manly guy, he had an awful lot of romance books. Interesting. Vampire books, writing manuals, classics, things in French that could have been anything, and more romances.

“Do you want cream and sugar?” Aidan had come in the room with my tea. Again he’d startled me with his silent movement.

“No. I like it bitter.” I set the cup down on the small bit of end table by the couch that didn’t have a book on it. “This is quite an interesting collection.”

He ran his hand through his hair and smiled sheepishly. He was still in his suit, so I felt a little odd wearing his clothes. “Oh yeah. Some of those are for research.”

“For what?” I mean, didn’t most guys just watch porn? Was this guy practicing to be some sort of Renaissance man Cassanova?

“I write.” He looked nervous again. He was probably really sorry he’d saddled himself with me for the night. I promised myself I’d be out as soon as it was light out. We could both put this behind us like it never happened. But that couch was too comfy and those blankets too warm to even think about letting him out of his offer now. He might be weird, but I had even money chances of getting attacked here or out on the street. At least here, I had a slight chance of dying happy. Or even just comfortable.

“What do you write?” My mind flashed to that scene in The Shining, the one when we learn all Jack Nicholson’s character had written was ‘All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy‘ over and over again.

“Romance novels.” He gave me a lopsided smile as he settled back into his chair. He took a sip of his tea before continuing. “Under a nom de plume of course. If word got out a man wrote those books, well, there would be an uprising.”

“Nice. You’re living a double life. Are you going to tell me what name you write as?” He had better, or else I’d spend the rest of the night prying the information out of him. He owed it to me. He‘d already made me cry over my tuna melt.

“Allison Duprois.”

Best selling author Allison Duprois? Holy crap. If this was even true.”No shit. I love those books.”

“You do?” He looked surprised. “I took you as more of a mystery suspsense type of girl.”

“What girl deep down inside doesn’t fall for a good love story?” Allison, or apparently Aidan, wrote about a vampire who’d been searching through the ages for the reincarnation of the wife he left behind when he became immortal. The books were sexy, sweet, and sad, because after a half a dozen or so books he had yet to find her.

Part of me hoped that someday, he would find her, but the rest of me never wanted the story to end.

Cover Reveal: Silent Night by Kristen Strassel

It’s that time again!  The books are coming fast and furious this fall.  (No, I won’t be able to keep up this pace forever).  Everyone, please meet Kyndra and Aidan.  They’re bringing you book four in The Night Songs Collection, Silent Night.  It’s a standalone book that I’m billing as Pretty Woman meets Dracula at Midnight Mass.

What the hell do these two have to do with the rest of The Night Songs Collection?  Aidan created Talis and Cash, and he’s going to tell you his story, under the nom de plume of Allison Dubrois.

Silent Night Digital Cover Large

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000035_00024]

BLURB:

This Christmas isn’t about celebration for eighteen-year-old Kyndra, it’s about survival. Grieving the loss of her grandmother and struggling with the indifference of her family, Kyndra now splits her time between her dead-end mall job, her junkie ex-boyfriend’s bed, and the streets. Longing to be close to her grandmother one more time, she wanders into Christmas Eve mass and prays she’ll find the place she belongs. Home.

Aidan isn’t ready to let go of the past either, even though he’s had nearly three hundred years to do it. He chronicles the search for the reincarnation of his beloved wife as the vampire romance author Allison Duprois. Aidan knows the wife he mourns is out there, but fears writing their story is as close as he will get to her.

At Christmas Eve mass, he finally finds her. Alone, with no place to go.

Aidan brings Kyndra into his home, and gives her the safety, comfort and love she longs for. Though he gives her second chances she never thought she’d have, Kyndra still can’t get over Aidan’s mysterious past. Not to mention that he claims that he’s a vampire. Life alone on the streets is dangerous enough without handing her trust and love to the wrong person. Can Aidan break through the walls around Kyndra’s hardened heart to convince her that she belongs with him, forever?

PREORDER ON AMAZON FOR 99 CENTS!   ADD ON GOODREADS

Getting Inside The Story

Today’s brew: All the water. It will all make sense in a minute.

by Kristen

(Just a piece of business before I get down to business…Because the Night is now available on Kindle Unlimited, so if you’re a subscriber, you can read it for free! Do this thing.)

Write what you know. It’s a great place to start.  We have enough to worry about when we start writing without bogging ourselves down with research. Pushing a plot forward with three dimensional characters is hard work, yo. Not to mention, once you get those characters all snuggled in, you have to throw a stick of dynamite into the works and make them put their lives back together. And live happily ever after, if you’re a romance writer.

I pulled from every single place I had. Las Vegas, going to eight million concerts, working in the entertainment industry…Secondhand Heart is set in my hometown of Plymouth, and I had a lot of fun making the town a character in the book. God knows we’ve got some quirks around here. In Silent Night, I laid it all out bare. That book is really about when I lost my mom, and there’s a lot more truth in that one than fiction. Even though it was therapeutic to write the story, it’s terrifying to offer something that will always be raw and painful to the world.

Eventually, we tap the well dry. I write a lot of books. Having to set stories in places I’m not familiar with, or give the characters jobs and interests I know nothing about, is more intimidating that I expected it to be. I might not be familiar with something, but my readers might know a lot about that subject. If I don’t get it right, people are going to call bullshit in a hurry.

The internet makes research easy. Kinda. Sort of. Not really. Anyone can put a website. I mean, they let me and Julie run this blog. They’ll really let anyone on the interwebs. You have to make sure you’re looking at credible information.  Wikipedia is a total crap shoot. I watched a video today, and then scrolled down to the comments where people ALL CAPPED that the technique demonstrated was extremely dangerous.  I’ve watched makeup videos where people use latex paint on people’s faces. (This can kill someone.) You still have to vet your resources, and make sure your information is spot on.

A story I completed recently was set in New Orleans. I’ve been to the city a couple times, and I have two great and beautiful resources named Angi Black and Sarah Guillory to help me with local flavor.  They made me feel a lot more comfortable writing from a remote location.  But the manuscript I’m currently working on is set in the Colorado mountains.

I’ve never been to Colorado. I’m not sure if Angi or Sarah have, either.

I love being outside, but I wouldn’t call myself an outdoorswoman. I have leopard print sneakers and do zumba, for crying out loud.

How the hell was I going to convey how it felt to be chased through a wooded mountainside?

Clearly, I had to climb a mountain.

Yesterday, I drove to the Blue Hills ski area. There’s no skiing this time of year, but plenty of hiking. Before you point and snicker at my loose interpretation of a mountain, it’s the best I could for a morning hike. I chose the red dot trail, basically because I parked near it. I didn’t bother to check if it was the most difficult trail until I got back to the parking lot (it was). But I climbed that bitch, all three quarters of a mile up to the top. It was exciting, terrifying, rocky as fuck, and exhausting.  I learned so many things about a mountain that I would have never figured out looking at a computer screen.  And, I liked it, so I might go back and climb that bitch again. Or find another bitch that needs climbing. (TWSS)

Uphill, both ways, over a rock. For real.

Uphill, both ways, over a rock. For real.

Now I’ve decided these characters rock climb. Wish me luck.

 

The Night Songs Collection: This Is The Remix

Today’s Brew: I’m off coffee for the rest of the day. I’ll be setting my alarm for 3 AM, because my job is just that glamorous.

by Kristen

I have a confession to make.

I’ve been keeping things from you.  Not bad things, I just wasn’t ready to spill it yet.  But now I am.

I separated from my agent. My decision. Nothing bad happened, we’re still on good terms.  I will always appreciate the fact that Pam gave me my writing wings, and I know I wouldn’t be in this place if I never had her as an agent. I just wanted to take things in a different direction. The more I explored writing and publishing, the more I realized that right now, indie publishing is best for me.  I’ve known this for a while, but when I really wanted to self-publish a book more than even try to shop it around to publishers, I knew I had my answer.

Will I try the traditional route again? Maybe someday, if it’s right. Will I want another agent?  Not right now, but again, I’m leaving all my options open.  It’s exciting.  I have a lot of news to tell you about.

  • BECAUSE THE NIGHT and NIGHT MOVES are temporarily unavailable right now. BECAUSE THE NIGHT was re-edited and both books are getting new covers. Guys, they’re fucking awesome. I can’t wait to show them to you.  (Want to participate in the reveal?  Click here.)  Hang Le designed the covers and she knocked it out of the park. The books will rerelease July 12, and I’ll be doing a ton of fun promo that day.  I’ll tell you more about it that week.
  • WE OWN THE NIGHT is still releasing September 1, to correlate with the Audible release.  The cover reveal is also July 12, and you know, you should really sign up to participate.  🙂  It’s on Goodreads now.
  • Remember that book I said I wanted to self-publish?  Yeah, that’s happening.  It’s a contemporary romance, a new genre for me.  It’s called SECONDHAND HEART, and I’m looking to release it in October.  It features a 21-year-old military widow and a failed reality show star who’ve both come home (to my hometown) to start over.
  • That doesn’t mean the end of The Night Songs Collection.  In November, SILENT NIGHT, a book with new characters in the Night Songs world, will be released.  My elevator pitch for this book is Pretty Woman meets Dracula at Christmas Eve Mass.

So like I said, I had some news. It’s going to be a busy few months and I can’t wait to share it all with you.

 

BECAUSE THE NIGHT and NEWS for the rest of THE NIGHT SONGS COLLECTION!

Today’s brew: Blueberry awesomesauce

by Kristen

It’s been a great week for The Undead Duo! Julie finished RUNNING AWAY, and RUNNING HOME  is finding new fans with it’s 99 cent sale.

I’ve been waiting about as long as it look Julie to write Running Away for BECAUSE THE NIGHT paperbacks to be available.

You know, about this long.

And on Thursday, they came to be!!  You have several options. You can order your very own copy on Amazon. Or, if you fill out the form below, I will send you an autographed copy. Same deal for Julie. $15 each including shipping, US only. I love you outside the US people, but dude, it’s like pay my rent or pay shipping.

BTNweb

But wait! There’s more!  Julie and I tend to start and end things at the same time, and I typed THE END on the latest installment of The Night Songs Collection, a little ditty called SILENT NIGHT. It’s sort of a Christmas Story. It’s new vampires in the same world that you all know and love from Because the Night. I’m billing it as Pretty Woman meets Dracula at Midnight Mass. It’s still far away from seeing the light of day, but as we all know, you can’t edit nothing.

And even more!!  NIGHT MOVES, the next book in The Night Songs Collection, is coming SOON!  I don’t have the exact release date yet, but SOON!  The cover reveal is March 11, and if you’d like to participate in the party, click here to sign up.

Phew! I’m tired just telling you about all of this! I’m taking a sort of break before I start the next project, which is something totally new for me. And I have a gigantic pile of edits patiently waiting for me. Oh, who am I kidding. You all know I never take a break.

Postcards From Self Publishing Island

Today’s Brew: So much coffee I’m going to be digging my car out of a foot of snow with my bare hands.

by Kristen

If you’ve been following along with the Undead Duo the last eighteen or so months, you’ll know that we don’t do anything the traditional way. We do it our way.

 Julie’s got a publishing deal with a small press, but I had to go straight into the unknown. I chose agent assisted self publishing. Before you get out your pitchforks, enough people are doing this that Amazon has dedicated a service to agent assisted published books.  They just aren’t talking about it. I am, because I don’t think it’s anything to be ashamed of. It’s the best of both worlds. I have total control, I get professional guidance, and my agent still has interest in the book.  An agent’s job doesn’t end when the book sells, and that’s why I chose to include her in this journey. For my first series, I wanted my hand held as much as possible. It may not be the best decision for everyone, but for me, it’s working.

When you have a publisher, you have a team. People do stuff for you. I am the president and CEO of The Night Songs Collection. I write, I hire editors, I am actively involved in choosing the cover art, I do the publicity, run the contests, oh yeah, and write books.  There’s still publicity going on for Because the Night and Seasons in the Sun. Night Moves is getting its final touches put into place, and it’s coming out soon, so publicity needs to start for that. We Own the Night is in the first round of editing. And Silent Night is still being written. That’s five books. Going on at once.

My head is spinning. They’re all my children and they all deserve an equal amount of attention. But already, Seasons in the Sun got overshadowed by Because the Night.  Eventually, all the books will sell each other, providing people are interested in reading on, but for now, they all still need a push out into the world. No one knows about me or my books, and right now, I need to tell them why they care about my awesomeness.

Because I’m still freshly hatched into the published world, getting people to care was tougher than I thought. Even when I wanted to hire people, it wasn’t always a guarantee they wanted to work with me. I offered my book for review and was politely declined. Rejection doesn’t end when you publish your book, kids. My first instinct was the climb back inside myself and do everything myself.

It’s impossible. Remember I wanted my hand held? You need a team, even if you’re self publishing.

And even when people do agree to help, they aren’t always the best fit for your books. Julie and I have talked many times. You make your mistakes on the first book. It’s painful, because your first book is your first child. You want everything perfect, but perfect takes time. It’s like the editing process, it takes a couple of tries to get it right. And you don’t always know things aren’t right until you find the right fit.

Now my team is falling into place, and the weight has lifted off my shoulders. For the first time in a long time, all I have to really worry about is writing. 

It’s glorious.

Not only will I reap the rewards, but my readers will, too.

Please, God, let there be readers. 

 

 

 

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