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What's New:

The Neverland's Library Anthology is now on sale! With an introduction by Tad Williams and stories by Mark Lawrence, Marie Brennan, Jeff Salyards, Miles Cameron, Joseph R. Lallo, Mercedes M. Yardley, William Meikle, J.M. Martin, Teresa Frohock, and many more, the Neverland's Library Anthology is a collection of original works will take readers back to that moment when they first fell in love with the genre.

Miserere is now available at Audible.

My short story "Naked the Night Sings" is only one of the many fine stories in the urban fantasy anthology Manifesto: UF, edited by Tim Marquitz and Tyson Mauermann, Angelic Knight Press, 2013.



Death comes for us all.

Keep her as your friend.

 Read "La Santisima"


"Filled with show me now and tell me later prose, [Miserere] was one of the finest debuts of 2011 and remains a novel that I remember details from nearly three years later." Justin Landon, Tor.com

Download an excerpt of Miserere here

Entries in Alex Bledsoe (8)


the million dollar bookshop

One of Miserere's themes was how a child can change our outlook and make us want to be better people, not so much for ourselves, but for the child. I know my daughter did that for me. Unfortunately, not all children start out in the best of circumstances, or with parents who want to change their lifestyles.

Charities for children abound, but most people don't think about giving unless prompted by someone else. Mark Lawrence is prompting. He has created a website called The Million Dollar Bookshop where authors can purchase advertising space for their novels AND contribute to the children's charity of their choice. It's a great two-for.

I didn't have to think too long as to which children's charity would get my "advertising" dollars. This past summer, my friend Alex Bledsoe joined several other authors with Novel Tees to donate the proceeds from all sales to Protect and The National Association to Protect Children. The National Association to Protect Children works to protect children from physical, sexual, and emotional abuse. That was an organization I could get behind.

So I matched my summer donation to Novel Tees with advertising dollars to Mark's Million Dollar Bookshop and sent another $25.00 to The National Association to Protect Children.

If you are an author who needs a little advertising space and wants to donate money to the children's cause of your choice, step over here to find out how to participate. You don't have to give tons of money. Every little bit helps.


Reviews at The Founding Fields and Bookworm Blues

Sorry I've been so quiet, I'm eyeball deep in edits and hoping to see the light of day soon.

I'm just popping in long enough to acknowledge (and say thanks!) to two awesome book review blogs for their reviews for Miserere.

Over at The Founding Fields, Shadowhawk reviews Miserere:

"Miserere is also not for the faint-hearted. While the pacing isn’t fast-paced, the action is quite relentless and the various developments and intrigues progress quite swiftly. There is a good balance in keeping the reader hooked. Aside from the excellent characterisation is the fact that the setting of Woerld unfolds in a very striking manner. It is a world that runs in parallel to ours, and is directly connected to it. The religions in our world have a direct counterpart in Woerld and they all work together for the most part as Woerld is the last defence against the powers of Hell. So much so in fact that a rather large historical conflict in Woerld was reflected back on Earth as World War II. Now that’s something."

Sarah at Bookworm Blues talks about the use of religion in Miserere:

"Now, since religion tends to be a hot-button issue with me, that’s what I seemed to keep my eye on the most. It’s far too easy for some authors to use religious influences in their books as a way to preach and I’m just not into that. In fact, that sort of thing tends to be a deal breaker for me. Frohock, bless her heart, uses religion but not in any sort of preachy let-me-tell-you-an-important-message sort of way. Instead, religion in Miserere is incredibly plot driven, and it’s not just Christianity that she focuses on. In fact, Frohock peppers the book with plenty of references to varying world religions like Hinduism, Islam and many more. Though the main thrust of the book deals with Christianity, it’s set strongly in a secondary world that it reads more like myth than anything else. In fact, if Frohock decided to change the word “Christianty” with some made up religious title, I don’t think anyone would know the difference."

And finally, this is super cool if you're a fan of Alex Bledsoe's Eddie LaCrosse series. You can buy a cool t-shirt and have the chance to be a part of a great cause. Check out the full blog post on Alex's blog. The cause is Protect, a lobby for legislation to protect children from physical, sexual, and emotional abuse.

Okay, I'm going back into edits, but stay tuned. There will be more giveaways coming soon, and something extra, extra special.

Soon you might get a peek inside The Garden ...


Contest winners ...

We've had quite a few contests rolling around here lately, so I thought I'd do a one post fits all for everyone.


1. Kimberly Vanderhorst -- Package #2 (50-page critique from my agent, Weronika Janczuk + autographed MISERERE postcard)

2. Kimberly Lynn Workman -- Package #3 (25-page critique from my agent, Weronika Janczuk + synopsis critique from my agent + autographed MISERERE postcard)

3. Kristin Boe -- Package #1 (autographed copy of MISERERE: AN AUTUMN TALE + 25-page critique from my agent, Weronika Janczuk + autographed MISERERE postcard)

4. Shawn Wesley Stephens -- Package #4 (25-page critique from my agent, Weronika Janczuk + synopsis critique from my agent)

5. Jonathan Danz -- Package #5 (synopsis critique from my agent, Weronika Janczuk + query critique)

Congratulations! Weronika will be getting in touch with each of you soon about your various packages.

Thanks to everyone who took the time to submit your flash fiction for the contest.


URBAN FANTASY, OR IS IT? / The Hum and the Shiver: Deborah Blake won an arc of The Hum and the Shiver for her entry "Gravel Road Fantasy" in Alex Bledsoe's challenge to come up with a rural alternative to Urban Fantasy.

The great and wonderful Random Number Generator favored these two fabulous people for autographed copies of Miserere last week:

GLA BLOG: Marisa won a copy of Miserere at my post on How I Got My Literary Agent.

TARTITUDE: Vaughn Roycroft won a copy of Miserere at the Tartitude Interview.

Congratulations to all the winners and a special thanks to everyone who took the time to comment and enter all of the contests we've had floating around the Internet to celebrate Miserere's release during the month of July.

There will be one more chance to win autographed copies of Miserere plus an autographed copy of another book by a different Night Shade debut author. Watch for a wonderul multi-author interview that will be happening at the Fantasy Book Critic a little later on. I'll let you know when that interview is live with a redirect.


Urban fantasy, or is it? by Alex Bledsoe

Thanks to all the great bloggers who have (and have yet) to participate in my blog tour! I've got a couple more interviews coming up this week, but I thought today, we'd take a break from me and let someone else talk for a while.

My friend Alex Bledsoe, author of the Eddie LaCrosse series and those devilish vampires in Blood Groove and The Girls with Games of Blood, is taking the helm today to talk about urban fantasy and his newest novel, The Hum and the Shiver. I've had a chance to read an ARC of The Hum and the Shiver, and Alex once more shows off his versatile talent by dishing up a new tale that moves like a song on a summer night.

And there is a contest, so be sure you read for your chance to win a copy of The Hum and the Shiver.

For those of you who don't know, Alex grew up in west Tennessee an hour north of Graceland and twenty minutes from Nutbush. He has been a reporter, editor, photographer and door-to-door vacuum cleaner salesman. He now lives in a Wisconsin town famous for trolls and mustard, writes before six in the morning and tries to teach his two sons to act like they've been to town before. You can keep up with Alex on Twitter, Facebook, and MySpace, and read his blog here.

Urban Fantasy, Or Is It?


Alex Bledsoe

Elizabeth Bear defines urban fantasy thus: “In urban fantasy you don’t leave the chip shop and go to another world to find the unicorn. Rather, the unicorn shows up at the chip shop and orders the cod.”

But what do you call it if the unicorn has to bring his tacklebox and catch his own cod? Or climb on the tractor and put the weevil spray on his cotton field? What do you call the tropes of urban fantasy if they're no longer urban, but are still contemporary?

This is what I've run into trying to describe my next novel, The Hum and the Shiver, out in September from Tor.

It's set in the modern, contemporary, up-to-the-minute world. There are cars, trucks, cell phones and computers. But the characters are farmers, returning soldiers, and small-town ministers. They may brush up against faery magic, but they do it in the mountains of East Tennessee, not the gritty streets of Chicago or St. Louis.

So what is it?

The obvious inversion, "rural fantasy," seems kind of...blah. "Urban" implies trendy fashion, electronics, fast-paced transportation and the smell of exhaust pipes, which then makes a vivid contrast to "fantasy." "Urban" implies sophistication. "Rural," though, conjures up images of fields, forests and lakes, which are very much the traditional fantasy setting. And you have the same problem with terms such as "agrarian fantasy," "rustic fantasy," or "country fantasy." None of them imply modernity.

There are other synonyms: "pastoral" might work, except that my story has trucks running from highway patrolmen, knives drawn in anger and at least one mention of dangling intestines. "Arcadian" has a nice lilt, but most people wouldn't know what it means; same with "bucolic," which sounds like an advanced form of colic, and believe me, that's nothing anyone wants to experience.

Maybe my process is wrong, though. Is looking for antonyms to "urban" and/or synonyms for "rural" too obvious? Perhaps we need a totally unrelated term that connotes modern, yet rural, reality. Something that says farms, trailers, pickups and railroad crossings.

I like "dirt road." "Dirt" implies the rural location, but "road" carries connotations of modern vehicles. Which gives us the term, "dirt road fantasy."

What do you think? Is "dirt road fantasy" a valid opposite for "urban fantasy"? Will it ever catch on? Or do you have an even better idea?

The best suggestion will win a free signed copy of The Hum and the Shiver.

The contest will end July 24, 2011.


the devil is in the details ...

...and anywhere else worth hanging out.

Everybody gets hung up in their stories from time to time. Sometimes a subtle shift in gears will speed things up. For me, it was:

  • one character's gender had to change; and
  • I had to approach a scene from a different character's point of view.

It doesn't sound like a lot, but the gender change enabled me to add new plot twists that deepened the stakes for the characters. I'm always looking for that emotional build-up for my characters, and until this week, all the action was there, but very little emotion. Without the emotional angle, my reader isn't invested in the characters or their problems.

The point of view change gave me the ability to show the reader information that my protagonist wouldn't know. I don't like frustrating my readers, and in this case, changing point of view moved the story along a lot faster. It's okay for my protagonist to be in the dark; however, the reader needs to know what is going on at all times.

People seem to be enjoying Miserere, so I'm moving ahead with my synopsis of Dolorosa and will revisit Woerld as time allows.

Meanwhile, I've got a couple of interviews that will be posted this week, more giveaways for Miserere to announce, and just in case you're bored with me (I know I am), Alex Bledsoe is going to stop by this week with a guest post. You will have a chance to win a copy of his latest novel The Hum and the Shiver. Very, very cool book and yes, you wants it, precious, I know you do ...


demons and angels and Christians...down at Lucky Town

I really had a lot of fun with an interview I did with Alex Bledsoe today. We talked about how to use real religions in your story without becoming sanctimonious, the Pseudepigrapha and Apocrypa, Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Wayne Barlowe, and how all these things came together to make Miserere what it is.

The version of Christianity that I present on Woerld is gleaned not just from Biblical sources, but also from the Pseudepigrapha and Apocrypa. I wanted to see what Christianity might have been like before the Schism of 1054 when Rome split from the Byzantine Church. I approached all the religions on Woerld strictly from a scholarly angle at first, then I eased the spiritual elements inherent to the practices of the religion into the story.

Head down to Lucky Town at Alex's blog to read the rest ...



Alex Bledsoe reviews Miserere: An Autumn Tale at his blog

Every writer dreams of getting a review in which the reviewer really understands what you're trying to accomplish with your story and characters. When the review is by someone whose writing you really admire, the author is due for a double fist-pump. I got both today.

Check it out: Review: Miserere by Teresa Frohock

File this under best Monday ever.


Alex Bledsoe talks about Miserere

A ray of sunshine blew through my cloudy week when Alex Bledsoe told me he enjoyed reading Miserere. I have enormous respect for Alex as a writer and I am absolutely in love with his Eddie LaCrosse series that blends two of my favorite genres, mystery and fantasy. I mean major fangirl stuff here.

I was on pins and needles while he read Miserere. Yesterday, he told me he really enjoyed reading the novel and today, he sent me my blurb:

Miserere is about redemption, and the triumph of our best impulses over our worst. It's also about swords, monsters, chases, ghosts, magic, court intrigues and battles to the death. It's also (and this is the important part) really, really good.

--Alex Bledsoe, author of "Dark Jenny" and "The Sword-Edged Blonde"
Now when people ask me what my novel is about, I'm just going to quote Alex.