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Try Me, Part 2

12 Apr

I really need to do a proper design update, but frankly I suck at that kind of thing. But now that we’re settled in Ohio (we’re baaaaack!) and actual work is getting done again, I at least managed to give the place a good clean-up and reorganization. I checked all the links from my short fiction page, I updated the non-fiction section, and I added a page especially for editorial projects. Phew.

In the process, I noticed that some of my older stories are no longer available online where they used to be, and since my rights are all reverted to me, I put them up here on the site. I also noticed my old introductory “try me” post was woefully outdated, so here’s a new version:

Try me, I’m free!

Hi! My name’s Katey, and I write dark things. I have a few novels out right now. One is a freaky modern Appalachian fairy story called Scripped, and another is part one in a vampire series called The Family, Liam. Coming soon, I’ll also have a dark historical novella about a clockwork confessor called Inedible Sins.

There are a lot of authors out there, and I feel lucky that you took a second to check me out. Before you buy any of those things I just listed up there, maybe you want to make sure my style suits you. I would, too! All of the short fiction listed as “online” here is free, but here are some quick links to make things simpler, since I have a bunch of different styles, depending on what you’re into.

Just a couple of freebies to mitigate some of the risk factor.

Thanks for stopping by, and hopefully I’ll see you again soon.

Blood on your lips

6 May

Not yours, but Liam’s anyhow.

Yeah, so, if anyone happened by here over the last few days, they may or may not have noticed that I accidentally killed the site. Like, Thursday morning or Wednesday night. I was trying to figure out how to host multiple domains with my single hosting account. First I screwed up by accidentally changing my hosting to windows, which tanked my wordpress installation apparently. Except I didn’t know because I went to see The Avengers with Hayley. And we spent the whole day before watching Avengers movies. So the next morning I woke up and my site was dead, and probably had been all day. Which is always hilarious when you have no idea why.

And by hilarious I mean it makes me shouty and stabby. So, hilarious in an impotent rage kinda way, which is awesome.

BUT! I did actually win that battle. Then made the mistake of updating wordpress, which decided to take issue with a twitter plugin I don’t even use and tank the site again. This problem solved…

I finally got to do what I’d been trying to do for the last three days. And so now, I have it. No longer exiled to a single lonely page at, Liam and co. now have a real space. I am super excited about this fabulousness:

It’s not done, but it’s got the skeleton in place and some fun character bits for the moment. More when the time draws  nearer, but I couldn’t have that beautiful art and not do something with it straightaway. Even if this isn’t your kind of book, you gotta see Courtney’s Liam drawing. Yes, barring disaster, it will be used for the cover — though not as is. But seriously. Dude looks rad.

And now back to combing through his dirty manuscript so I can have a nice shiny version for the Belfire folks to work from. Yay!

One of those days

29 Aug

Aaaaand that’s the last of it. TALES FROM LIBERTY TREE no longer exists in eBook format — well, except on the readers of those who already downloaded it. Thanks to everyone who gave it a shot! Remember, you can still get the super-sexy paper version by pre-ordering SCRIPPED. And I know y’all are book people, so you know books can be sexy. Even just the paper. Bliss. So if you do pre-order, lemme know, and it’s yours asap.

And yeah, I know, the site went wonky again for a few hours this morning. I swear these fuckers wait til I go to bed, then come up in here and bust up my internet house, leave it full of their disease, and run off tittering into the night. *fist shakey* But I’ve just disabled the last of the plug-ins that might possibly be leaving this place open to attack, so… should be good now? Anyhow, whatever the hell the malware is, it couldn’t manage to infect my computer (I tried, cuz I’m dumb like that), so it’s clearly shit anyhow. Just… annoying >.<

If this doesn’t clear it up, I’ll, uh, call customer service and cry. Also, be blacklisted by Google and McAfee and Trend Micro and everyone ever. Which is JUST what you want right before your first novel drops! Yaaaaay!

Yes, my friends, it is one of those days. I am a cranky pants, so I’m going to go drink this screwdriver and sink into happy, happy reading. In truth, my job right now is awesome. FISH reading is — well, it’s beautiful, to be honest. The RPP slush pile is frightening, it’s so good, and I don’t know how the hell John and I are going to choose, like, eight out of the sixty-something we have so far. Shortlist notices started going out this week, and damn, dude.

Plus, after I’ve done with my editor stuff, which as noted above is pretty much made of win, I get to write a vampire sequel. The downside is it means I have to re-read LIAM, which I haven’t really seen since I sent it off to Belfire. Not that I mind, just re-reading my own books is not really my idea of a good time. (Oh, it’s awesome though. Really. Seriously. You’ll love it! Right.) The upside is, uh, I get to write more vampires. Yay!

… wait, sorry, I was being cranky, wasn’t I? *frowny face* There.

Last Chance Freebie

27 Aug

So I was working really really hard all week. I mean REALLY hard. I was ever-so slightly behind for most of the month, like, keeping my head above water, but occasionally sucking in a lungful. I was knocking shit over right and left, though. So much so that I worked like 14 hours a day on Wednesday and Thursday so I could sit around and read my comics on Friday and be all “Hey, fuck off, it’s my birthday!”

Naturally, while my attention was thus diverted, random Russian codebots decided to bust in wordpress’s backdoor (haha… sorry), hack my .htaccess file, and screw with the site. No worries, though, I’ve taken back my turf, so you won’t get any nasty net stds or anything. Sorry about the weird-out, there.

Right, the freebie thing. As I mentioned previously, I’m gonna have to take down the LIBERTY TREE e-book soon, because I don’t want it to be there side-by-side with the First Ever E-Book-ified Red Penny Papers. (Yeah, I typed that phrase then read it again several times. Awe. Some.) That kinda sucks since the pre-order is extending a couple of weeks past its initial stretch, and it’d be nice to have them to hand out. So here’s the deal:

TALES FROM LIBERTY TREE e-book is free for all until Monday at 5pm. And then it disappears forever.

The individually signed and numbered paper version is far superior, mainly because it’s really, really pretty. I can say that because it’s nothing to do with me except I slapped it all together: the fabulous artist (who designed the cover especially for it — Asya Yordanova is brilliant), the gorgeous, creamy paper, the pretty silk ribbon, etc. It’s in pretty short supply, but I can rustle up a few. Those, however, aren’t free. Well, they are, but more of a thank you gift with purchase, if you know what I mean. There’s still time to pre-order SCRIPPED and get yours (directions in the post linked above), but not much. When SCRIPPED goes live, it’s over forever — or at least until I attend some con or event and take the second run leftovers with me.

So please give me a chance, and hey, maybe you’ll decide I can tell a story worth paying for after all. Free of charge, no risk — yeah, reading a story costs you time, and for that, I will be eternally grateful, even if you decide I’m a hack. If you don’t and you pre-order SCRIPPED as a result, lemme know, and pretty paper version will wing its way to you anywhere in the world.

And as a side note, I picked “The Connoisseur” and “Green” as the two to include of all my weird Liberty Tree ideas because they’re the two that have a similar feeling to SCRIPPED, but in totally different ways. It’s been extremely cool hearing which one people like better, so far. So if you do read it/have read it, and would like to participate in an informal poll, don’t be shy about dropping a comment, email, tweet, whatever about which one you liked better. Opinion is currently split right down the middle, which is both unexpected and cool. (I mean, you always expect people to like the one you think is better. Er, not that I pick favorites… *cough*)

Random unscientific experiment. Hee!

Art, theater, writing

22 Feb

…and everything else awesome in the world.

Well, okay, maybe not everything. This whiskey on my desk is pretty damn good too–and there’s other stuff that comes to mind, but I’ll spare you.

So first, art. Anyone not viewing this in their rss reader will by now have noticed the presence of a new decoration–if we can call him that, poor little dear–at this here site. I talked to the magnificent C. Bernard (she did the Magdala portrait for The Red Penny Papers and our first cover based on Aaron Polson’s Abraham Reaver) about the possibility of a little sketch. See, I’ve had this character since I was 13 years old, and I always kind of wanted to get someone awesome to draw him. Someone awesome = Courtney.

As the sidebar now proves. So anyhow, that’s Aldo, and I posted a bigger version of him to twitpic earlier–it’s worth seeing to appreciate the full awesome. He’s been with me long enough and inspired enough stories (not to mention a tattoo) that he leveled up from Character to Official Muse ages ago. It’s only right then that he should be the poster boy for the blog.

So, sorry if your workplace gets mad if you have man nipples on your screen. For what it’s worth, he doesn’t think he should be without a shirt in public either. And he’s probably right, but his tattoos are important, dammit.

Also in art, I saw a prelim compositional sketch for some Scripped-related art my aunt is working on. Yeah, my aunt. My family is awesome, I know. But let’s just say I’ve been squeeing with art-loving joy all weekend, man.

Theater! I regularly spam this blog with tales of trips to the opera and other such theatricals, so no one will be surprised by this. We went to visit my parents for the long weekend, and my brother’s girlfriend, the remarkably talented and adorable Kassidy, was in a production of The Laramie Project at her university. Again, no surprises that I loved it–but even my husband, who is very wary of anything depressing, and my father, who is easily bored by drama, fell in love. If you ever get a chance to see it, please do. It’s fucking brilliant.

Helped that the production was fucking brilliant, though. As a fun side note, The Westboro Baptist dumbasses were supposed to stage a protest on campus–as they often do when this particular show is produced, both because of the subject matter and because Phelps is portrayed in all his genuine lunacy in the play. They were coming to the Sunday show… and failed to realize it was a matinee. I don’t know if they showed up at 6pm as they’d planned, but I hope they enjoyed finding out that the show was over and done with and no one gives a crap what they think.

Writing! I edited a bunch last week–final preparations for the RPP spring issue have been good to go for some time, but I’m also working on exciting things for Morrigan Books (said exciting things will be announced soon!), so life is good to me just now. But in my spare time–because this is my idea of a good time–I wrote an outline for a story for a project some may or may not have noticed me discussing with the lovely Carrie Cuinn on twitter. Yay for new stories!

I also saw The King’s Speech (which I loved), played Fable III (which I need), and ate at Primanti Bros (which is magic). So that’s me after the long weekend. How are y’all doing?

Now playing: Autour De Lucie – L’eau qui dort
via FoxyTunes


3 Jan

It’s been an age since the site was updated, so I’ve decided on this second day of 2011 (wait, it’s the 3rd by now–well anyhow!) to take some initiative. It’s going to be a little bit of a mess for a few days. I changed servers, and I did manage to save all the blog entries and comments–and somehow get my email to crossover smoothly–but the images were a necessary sacrifice to the internet gods, and so things are a little drab for the moment.

Also, if I was on your RSS reader, I should tell you that the feed location is different now. Apologies, I know, it’s a pain.

Right–I’ll be back to life here pretty soon. Hope everyone had a fabulous New Year. I did!

Also pretty sure I just sold another story about sex and madness. But I’m not fooling anyone; that could be anything I’ve ever written.

Now playing: Massive Attack – Babel
via FoxyTunes

Little Updatey Things

20 Mar

Updatey is not a word, I know. But it’s descriptive, you have to admit.

This weekend I’m fixing up an oldish manuscript for submission, Wolfton Paranormal. (Which I know is an incredibly vague title, but it’s meant to be more of an overarching one, as of course, what’s an urban fantasy without a sequel or three in the works?) I love going back to something after a year away from it, it feels like visiting an old friend I missed like crazy, and I’m always convinced that this one– whatever it is– is my favorite, and I can make something of it if I just keep at it.

Well no, my first will always be the favored child, I have to confess. I wouldn’t be writing now without it. But I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels that way.

Anyhow, since I was at it, I figured I’d update the little project page for it over there on the sidebar, and then figured what the hell, might as well do ‘em all. So I did some tweaking and finally, finally gave Scripped its own page. About goddamn time, seeing as I’ve had the thing edited, polished, and out with a lovely publisher for a few months now. Poor neglected novel! Don’t think I don’t love you, Jonah. You know I do.

Then I updated the Short Fiction page to show the latest developments, including the upcoming Necrotic Tissue bite, and the Scenes From the Second Storey project with Morrigan Books– on that latter, the Aussie version is the one that’s up on the Morrigan site. I’m in the international one to be edited by Mark Deniz and Greg Ballam and it’s still TBA time-wise. I’d try and convince you to wait on that one, but the Aussie one looks delicious. I’m thinking buying both is the only logical course of action.

Right, but I had a point here that doesn’t involve shocking narcissism. That is that if your name isn’t over on that sidebar, and you have a blog/site that with which you’d like me to trade links/have been trading links and I’m too freaking slow to notice, please let me know. It’s a beautiful list, and I use it in concert with my trusty Thunderbird rss reader to keep up with y’all, so don’t be shy.

Now playing: Arctic Monkeys – Dance Little Liar
via FoxyTunes


23 Apr

So I kind of broke everything again on this site with one swift click of my mouse button. I think this should be a lesson to me in the temperamental side of WordPress (and the fact that I know sweet FA about it, as if that hasn’t been made abundantly clear to me in the last year and a half), so I just kind of re-did everything myself instead of begging Becca, who did it all in the first place, for help. I actually know how most of the code here works now, on the up side. Wooo.

It’s not done, but I think I got most everything from the cache and my rss reader, in terms of links and stuff. If your name isn’t over there and it should be (even if it wasn’t before, now’s your chance for an extra link!), please let me know.

I’ve been meaning to clean things up anyhow, so yay for a kick in the ass, right? But it’s 4am, which is even past my bed time. Tomorrow I’ll make things look– well, if not pretty, at least a little more navigable.

Now playing: Suede – Jumble Sale Mums
posted with FoxyTunes

Tofurkey, anyone?

26 Nov

Well, I’m headed back to Appalachia for Thanksgiving. To all you Americans about to do anything remotely similar, please enjoy this opportunity to bask in the glow of our national habit of super-consumption! I know I will!

In that spirit, please enjoy these Thanksgiving wishes, from me to you.

No seriously, I like Thanksgiving because it’s mostly football and wine at our house, and my mom is an amazing cook (and rightfully proud of her “Katey Versions” of typical Thanksgiving fare. She’s been stockpiling vegetable broth for a month, I think. So exciting). But I don’t do Tofurkey, don’t worry, I’m not that crazy. I had a friend home with me once for this particular holiday, also veggie, and she brought one. It was probably one of those most awful things I’ve ever eaten in my life.

This trend of trying to make veggie products taste and look like meat is disturbing to me. I guess I see the point if you’re off the meat for health reasons, but some of us have a little PTSD here. (Just to deal with the questions now, no, I don’t care what you eat any more than you care what I eat. See how PETA makes me look like an asshole? RAWR!)

Speaking of PTSD, let’s hope my dad and the old boys have the deer processing operation in the garage cleaned up by the time I get there tonight. Wish me luck!

Now playing: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart – The Marriage of Figaro: Overture
posted with FoxyTunes

Spec Fic Recs from October

10 Nov

So there was a very, very minor site update last night– if you’re here take a sec and check out the sidebar. If you can’t see the category headings (“info”, “project excerpts”, etc.) or if the title image looks somehow wonky (apart from the quality of the artwork itself…), let me know. If everything’s cool, I’ll, ah, assume it’s cool. I just had an urge to replace some stuff so I did it while I watched the Steelers get beaten yesterday.

But we won’t talk about that any more. :/

Moving on, I did absolutely nothing for Nano this weekend, after clocking out on Friday with over 28k. That felt good, but I’m far enough into the book now to miss the company of my main character when I’m not writing.

I was always very attached to my imaginary friends as a kid. Nice to know some things never change.

And now to the important things! I read quite a lot of good stuff last month, seeing as it was October, but since I’m writing a novel that will inevitably end in extreme depression, I have an urge for things that strike me as fun. Therefore, this tiny edition of Spec Fic Recs is going to use that as a theme. Two stories this time, both of them awesomely fun– no hint of melodrama or despair.

Anyhow, it’s that time of year when there isn’t enough sun to go around, now. So I’d best start this off on the right foot.

The first of my two picks today is The Girl Prince by Merrie Haskell, from the last issue of Coyote Wild. This is sci-fi meets fairy story, a quest to save the princess in the tower, but with space suits and references to giant alien squid creatures. I know, how much more perfect can an idea get? But Haskell writes beautifully, deftly wielding the dual charms of true adventure and utterly disarming combination of practicality in fairy tale romance. (I do mean “romance” in the larger sense of the word, of course.) I’m also a sucker for fun physics and/or superhero science applications in my fiction, and this story is full of those goodies. She takes a good idea and makes it great.

As a sort of side note, growing up a girl who was into speculative fiction was sometimes a real pain in the ass. People would tell me I would love Piers Anthony, and I’d sit there with this look of horror on my face as I choked down the misogyny of the Incarnations of Immortality and wondered what the hell they were thinking. (They meant well, and I still like that concept, but man. The pain.) There were good things about it too– my dad hooked me on fantasy by giving me Marion Zimmer Bradley’s The Mists of Avalon when I was way too young for it, for example, and it’s still one of my favorite books to this day. I’m not saying that’s a reason to read The Girl Prince, it’s not a feminist story or even trying to beat down that nonsense (except by mocking them to death), but it’s definitely one of the reasons it struck me as so very true and clever as a girl, if not a prince, myself.

But don’t worry, feeling slightly marginalized as a kid isn’t a pre-requisite to enjoying it; it’s fun for everyone. Nobody likes to wait to be forbidden not to do what they really want, after all. (Hm, that makes more sense in context. Sorry.)

And the second fun read for the month is Catherine Schaff-Stump‘s The Initiation Rites and Incantations of the Vampire Killers Junior Auxiliary, from the inaugural issue of Drops of Crimson. This is not your typical vampire story by any stretch of the imagination, first of all (not that I’d mind if it was, because, er, vampires!). Instead it’s a groovy slice of an original world, wherein vampires occupy suburbia now and then, and vampire hunting is a real career option. This one follows the fabulous ten-year-old duo of Vince and Abby through a short, weirdly adorable adventure. What I love most about this is the understated prose and extraordinarily engaging storytelling. From a technical standpoint, I could learn a lot here.

From a reader standpoint, ha! That was awesome! I’m such a sucker for a great vampire (okay, that sounds like I’m trying to be punny, but I swear I’m not), any kind of vampire, but this one is just too cool.

So there we have it, some light spec fic to convince us all not to give up hope on our nano novels– or other novels, while the rejections and brain-blocks continue to roll in mercilessly in spite of the fact that this is November, dammit!

Now playing: Keane – Black Burning Heart
posted with FoxyTunes