Buck, buck, buck? Price drop: Every Which Way but Dead

Hi All,

In celebration of the upcoming release of AMERICAN DEMON, (Yay, Rachel and Trent!) I am hosting a read-a-long over at Goodreads. We’re just now starting Every Which Way but Dead, and if you want to join in, come on over! ¬†— Goodreads — My biggest surprise when I wrote it was Ceri. Two weeks of plotting on paper down the crapper right from page one. (happy sigh)

Even better, there’s a rolling price reduction going on, even if you are not a member of Goodreads. So if you can’t find your books or simply want to round out your e-library, this is a relatively painless way to do it. Or even better, get a book for that stubborn reader in your life who just won’t give the Hollows a try. ūüėČ

Today we officially begin Every Which Way but Dead, so you can find it for a limited time for .99. Yep, less than a dollar! So cheap, you can buy it for a friend. ūüėČ

If you’re just now hearing about the read-a-long, the folders for Dead Witch Walking, and The Good, The Bad, and The Undead will remain active, and I’ll continue to be checking them as we go along.

–Kim

EWWBD KINDLE

EWWBD NOOK

 

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The Hollows Read-A-Long/price drop

Hi All,

In celebration of the upcoming release of AMERICAN DEMON, (Yay, Rachel and Trent!) I am hosting a read-a-long over at Goodreads. We’re almost up to 1000 members, and the chatting is good! I love hearing about your favorite quotes and what you are getting out of the books a second time with the gift of foresight. If you want to join in, come on over! ¬†— Goodreads — I’ve been following and answering questions as we went through Dead Witch Walking, and it’s been a lot of fun!

But even if you are not a member of Goodreads, you can take advantage of the rolling price reductions that Harper has graciously agreed to. Right now, Dead Witch Walking and The Good, the Bad, and The Undead are on sale, so if you can’t find your books or simply want to round out your e-library, this is a relatively painless way to do it. Or even better, get a book for that stubborn reader in your life who just won’t give the Hollows a try. ūüėČ

Today we begin The Good, The Bad, and the Undead, but the folders of conversation are still active for Dead Witch Walking, and I’ll be checking them as we go along.

–Kim

DWW Kindle

DWW Nook

GBU Kindle

GBU Nook

 

 

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Hollows read-a-long Yep, we’re doing it!

Hi all. Kim here.

Got a favorite Hollows quote? Have a burning question? Guess what? I’m hosting a Hollows read-a-long!

To celebrate (and get ready for) the release of AMERICAN DEMON in June, I’m hosting a read-a-long where you can gush, and laugh, and cry, and commiserate with like minded readers of the Hollows. I’ll also have information on flash sales as they come up, (fingers crossed) and who knows, I might just have a give-away or two.

We’re starting Dead Witch Walking TODAY! And though we’re taking some time for this first one to help get organized and find a large group, I plan on burning through the series pretty quickly. (If you want a slower read-a-long, there’s another going at The Cincy Underground over on FB.)

I’m structuring this to have one or two sharp breaking points per book where you can talk without the spoiler tags, but I’m counting on you all to start discussions and topics as we go. I have no idea what you want to talk about, so jump in and take part. I’ve always been proud of the way my readers can discuss without arguing, and I’m looking forward to talking with you and hearing your thoughts. ūüôā

Not a member of¬†Goodreads¬†yet? You’re in for a treat! Sign-up is easy, and it’s an amazing place to find new reads and friends who appreciate reading what you do. Why Goodreads? They have a great setup to structure read-a-longs on, so check it out. Everyone there loves books. Everyone.

Also, I’m still looking for some moderators. I’m hoping to have 13 with the intent being that each book have a designated head moderator who will chaperon the read-a-long with me for the duration of their book, giving the other 12 moderators a bit of a break. (Though obviously, if you’re a moderator, you’re able to moderate through the entire read-a-long.) ¬†So far, we have Joseph for A FISTFUL OF CHARMS, Liz H. for WHITE WITCH, BALCK CURSE, and Karen for PALE DEMON. (Thank you so much, Joseph, Liz, and Karen!)

If you are interested, please let me know at Goodreads at the introduction thread. I’ll be looking for you there!

–Kim

 

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2019 Read-along to AMERICAN DEMON

Quick heads up! I’m sponsoring a Hollows read-along over on Goodreads starting next month and running to the release of AMERICAN DEMON on June 16, 2020. And because I know not everyone is on Goodreads, I’ll be answering questions here as well but in a much more haphazard format and not as cozy.

Come back on Monday for Goodreads links and the schedule of what we’re reading when, but because there are so many to get through, it’s going to be a book every two to three weeks with a few weeks off in December.

If you want to get a head start, we’re starting at the beginning with Dead Witch Walking.

Happy reading!

–Kim

 

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One of the perks . . .

One of the perks of being an author is having our voices heard, though usually through the lens of our characters and not always understood or clear. And though it’s hard to see it in the text, I’m often working something out in my head and on the page at the same time.

I fully intended today to sit down and write a set of lyrics about Pike, a character I’m developing in THE RULE. He’s a magnificent, wild-card vampire who’s going to get Rachel in trouble, and I thought perhaps Takata, my song-writing oracle, might write something about him. I use all the tools in my box to develop characters, and music/lyrics is my hammer. It busts things open.

So I used my hammer, and Pike is not what came out on my paper. Oh, it started with Pike, but it ended with something far more real, something that I can’t bring out and work through in the Hollows simply because of the established universe I’m working in there. I’ve got another series sitting at rough draft that does, but no one will see it anytime soon because, well, it’s not the Hollows, and I’m seriously okay with that. Time changes all things, and I’ve not given up, just shelved the art in my process until my “art” is what is selling.

I only ask that you be kind and understand that it’s only a few hours old and it will likely be tweaked before chunks of it show up in AMERICAN DEMON or THE RULE. But now you can say you saw it in the raw, and maybe you’ll understand what I’m saying a smidgen more when it shows up between the covers.

It needs a title. I’m thinking BLACK COIN, but I’m open to suggestions.

I’m killing time, till time kills me
No one knows who will succeed
Wealth buys time, till time runs out
Whose to say what it’s all about
When you’re killing time,
     Killing time
     Killing time
¬† ¬† ¬†It’s killing time

Ten thousand years, is the price
Black coin banked under shale and stone
We spent it all, on magic beans
But magic beans don’t grow

Pretty lies and fairy tales
Wrapped in soiled flags
Black coin seeps, like poison creeps
and balance found will fail

(Wake up!)
Species dying
Children crying
State fathers lying
Lobbyists buying
The earth is frying

Ten thousand years, is the price we pay
Corruption has no shame
Faceless, voiceless, nameless . . .
PAIN!
Peerless, fearless, short-list . . .
SHAME!

Can’t put it back–black coin ill-spent
Ten thousand years, at detriment
Down in the earth, buried deep
Down where the demons sleep
Down where God can’t speek
Black coin spent, our soul to keep
So as you sow, so shall you reap
So as you sow, your children weap
Just killing time, as black coin seeps

Just killing time
Killing time
Killing time

It’s killing time.

–Kim Harrison 9-22-19

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And on the fifth day of plotting…

If I’m quiet, I’m working. ūüôā And I’ve been quiet! I should have a release date for AMERICAN DEMON for you soon But what’s on my desk is THE RULE. (followup to AMERICAN DEMON) Yep,¬†I’m in full cry, chasing the next Hollows story. A reader¬†recently asked about my plotting process, which has become¬†fairly stable by now,¬†though I admit that every book is built using different tools¬†depending upon how much new magic/new characters/difficult themes/new techniques it has. But rather than tell you how I plot using AMERICA DEMON or THE RULE, and give away a lot of spoilers. (Pike. OMG. Pike.) I dipped¬†back into my files and found a few posts from 2009 that pretty much encompass the process. You can go back a few posts from here to get to the first nitty gritty of how it starts, but today, I’m¬†going to share a post where I’m at about day five in my plotting process. (In a new world/series, this would be about day ten.)

About the only difference between then and now is that I’ve begun using index cards¬†with one sentence plot movement to help me place where¬†certain¬†information becomes known: the red herrings, actual clues to solving the crime, or¬†knowledge of how to build the spell. I’ll have a stack maybe an inch thick when I’m done, divided up by chapters, which I then use to help me structure the one-page chapter¬†synopses. ¬†It helps when I’ve got two or more plot lines going because I can easily move¬†realizations, discoveries, and new-skill¬†attainment around before¬†anything goes on paper.

So here is my original post from 2009, as I worked up THE OUTLAW DEMON WAILS. ¬†I’ve got one more post to share after this concerning my plotting methods, but as always, everyone writes¬†differently,¬†and what works for me might not work for you. Just keep trying things. The only wrong way to write, is to not do it. Oh, and my chapter synopses always change when I begin writing. Always. If they didn’t, I’d get bored. Gotta follow the story where it leads!¬†

It’s about day five of the plotting/outlining stage of the next Hollows book, and I’ve got my 13 page synopsis broken into ten chapters so far.¬† Hopefully I’ll finish the chapter breakdown today, and can start on the actual writing tomorrow.¬† (whoo-hoo!¬† I’ve got to catch up with you guys doing the NaNoWriMo!)

So far, while using my character grid, I’ve found that I’ve got a slow spot, and I moved some things around to quicken it up.¬† I also named a new character, learned a few things about him,¬†and Rachel has told me she likes him better than the guy I thought she’d be interested in.¬† He¬†kind of likes her, too, or maybe he just likes the way she makes him feel.¬†¬†(Be smart, Rachel.) ¬†I’ve also learned what the story is about besides solving the crime and settling the love interest.¬† (By the way, it’s not settled.)¬† What I’m talking about here is the character growth, I suppose.¬† And without character growth, not only would the story be stale, but I’d be bored to tears writing it.

So¬†today,¬†I know what inner demon Rachel is going to slay this book–or at least come to terms with, and can work it in even at this early stage.¬† Previous demons?¬† Trust, adrenaline, her sexuality, independence. ¬† That I’ve realized it this soon is good.¬† Sometimes I don’t see it until the end of the book, which goes to prove that I’m still learning my craft.¬† Thank all that is holy.

–Kim

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Character Grid

As I begin work on the next Hollows book, THE RULE, I’m sharing my plotting methods. ¬†Today, I’m at day three of my¬†process, which is¬†where my character grid comes into play. It’s ¬†basically a spread¬†sheet that lets me see the entire book at a glance and helps me organize my thoughts. It’s invaluable in a rewrite when I have to insert a¬†snippet of information and am not sure where to logically do it.
The post below is from 2009, but it’s still¬†
accurate. Though a lot of my plotting methods have changed through the years, I still use and keep my character grids for future reference.

For those of you who haven’t been to the drama box in a few days, I’m taking the opportunity of NaNoWriMo and me just starting rough draft to detail out my plotting process.¬† Disclaimer:everyone writes differently, there’s no wrong way to do it.¬† This is what I’ve come up with over the last ten years or so, and what works for me.¬† It’s a process that’s still evolving.¬† Oh, and my word count is still zero.

Yesterday I rewrote my plot to take out the demon plotline and expand two others of crime and love.¬† It made a much more tidy¬†story and I was able to dig deeper into the relationships instead of skimming over them.¬† My one page synopsis turned into a 13 page synopsis, casually broken into maybe-chapters.¬† Today I’m going to begin to break this up into clear chapters so I can better balance the entire work as to pacing, place, and characters.¬† I don’t want to spend too much time in the church, or be moving from place to place in any given chapter.¬† My rule is no more than one scene shift per chapter, and try not to stay in any one place for more than two consecutive chapters.¬† Same thing with characters.¬† Variety¬†keeps the reader interested and the story moving.¬† So to better see the patterns that the story is taking and head off any potential problems, I have come up with a character grid.¬† It’s about the only piece of “software” that I use, and it’s just an Excel spreadsheet that I’ve modified¬†to my needs.¬† Here’s the one I used for ODW.

Characters are down the side, the locations of the scene are on the top, and the action is at the bottom.  (this is an early version, so it might not dovetail perfectly into the published book) The color shift is an indication of a change in day (which can be seen by the dates) and the chapter numbers are under that.  The Xs are when a character is an a chapter, and sometimes I use an O to indicate that they are in the chapter by way of phone or scrying mirror.  I usually have the month and day the book takes place in across the top, and the sunrise and set and average temps at the bottom,

My character grid is¬†how I first realized that Jenks was in almost every chapter in the earlier books, and I’ve become better at getting him out so other characters can shine.¬† It’s also how I know if I have a character who is needed for a crucial¬†scene, and yet is not introduced anywhere until that scene.¬† Very bad.¬† Same thing with the bad guys.¬† I try to have them show up early, and then at least one more time before the end.¬† Another rule of thumb is don’t introduce too many characters in the same scene, even if they are returning characters.¬† I like to have only two at the most, and will break a chapter just to avoid this.

A character grid of some sort is¬†also a great way to make sure that your male to female ratio isn’t wildly out of balance.¬† Mine usually slant to the male end of the ratio, but since Rachel is female it works out.¬† Oh, and when you go to rewrite and need to add something that¬†revolves around a character, it’s really easy to go the grid, see where they are, and place your clue instead of spending an hour thumbing through the file and guessing where to put it is.

Tomorrow, after I break this monster into chapters, I’ll let you know what balance issues¬†I encountered and nipped in the bud, but for now, I’ve not a clue as to what problems the manuscript has.¬† I can’t wait!

–Kim

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