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Showing posts from December, 2005

Happy New Year!

"Dontcha just love New Year's? You get to start all over. Everybody gets a second chance."
-- Otherwise Twit-like Girl, FORREST GUMP

Best description of New Year's ever, in my humble opinion. And we all have our resolutions (or our resolve not to do resolutions). It's a time of reflection. At least until the champagne pours.

As always, I am grateful for my wonderful readers, for those in this group and the teeming hundreds elsewhere that do me the honor of paying me for my words. It's a miracle that never ceases to amaze me, and one that I hope will always leave me humbled.

Without you guys, I'd just be talking to myself.

I hope the very best for you all in the coming year. May you have health, happiness and the fellowship of your loved ones. And if any of these fall short... it can always be worse.

Just think, you could be a character in one of my books.

Richest Man in Town

I admit it: I cried like a little girl.

The end of “It’s a Wonderful Life.” Seen so many times it’s like a cliché. It’s the hokey ending that solves all the problems in one beautiful bow, the sort of thing that never happens in real life. From his barstool on “Cheers,” Norm (George Wendt) even grouses that during the many times in his life he’s been in trouble, no one ever came to his door with a sackful of cash to bail him out.

“It’s a Wonderful Life” is certainly dated, if that is a crime. It has its flaws of logic and characterization – for all Mary’s strength and self-assuredness in the original timeline, where is it in the alternate timeline? Are we to assume that her strength came only from her husband, when she certainly showed it long before she became Mrs. George Bailey? Is it logical that the good people of Bedford Falls would have become a seedy crowd of rabble-rousing drunkards without a Building and Loan? While loss and grief would certainly change a person, is it likely th…

New Book!

Coming next month: SETTING SUNS, an anthology of twilight tales.

A nightmarish funhouse turned deadly. A couple trapped in a futile journey through time. A single baleful eye watching from the deep. An assassin waiting in a snow-covered tree. A pair of soldiers trapped between death and something worse.

These are the tales and terrors of Elizabeth Donald, award-winning author of the Nocturnal Urges vampire mystery series. These stories and more are contained in this volume of terrifying twilight tales.

In that space between evening and nightfall, between consciousness and sleep, the moment when the light fades and the shadows take over...

These are the lands of the Setting Suns.

"The stories in SETTING SUNS are imbued with a haunting lyricism, but frequently there are moments of pure terror that arrive like a devastating punch to the gut. Donald's is one of the strongest and freshest new genre voices out there."
--Bryan Smith, author of House of Blood and Deathbringer

If you ev…

Review: Crone's Moon (M.R. Sellars)

Sellars does it again.

If you haven't discovered the Rowan Gant mystery series, hie thee hence to your local bookstore and demand it. Get your hands on this series. You will have to read them in order, but you won't mind in the slightest. This series never fails to be a page-turning, heart-thumping read, and CRONE'S MOON delivers once again.

So who is M.R. Sellars? He wrote the first Rowan Gant mystery, HARM NONE, and tried to sell New York on the idea of a practicing Wiccan as the detective. New York was... New York. Thus the series went to the small press, and thank Goddess. :) (And if I have to put in my usual disclaimer that Wicca does not equal Satan-worshipping, I will thump you.)

Rowan Gant faces another serial killer in CRONE'S MOON, but more than any previous book, he's facing the killer on the mystical plane instead of the flesh-and-blood world of police forensics. Sellars always has the note of realism in his police procedurals, but with this book Gant is a…

a brief fangirl pause: subtext in Stephen King books vs. movies

This originated with a discussion on the Stephen King bulletin board hosted by his publisher, examining why King's books have been hit-or-miss in the theaters, while J.K. Rowling's are nearly universally loved. It's a hard comparison because Rowling is writing one series, and King has written a great variety of works in several universes.

But that never stops me from shooting off my mouth.

I think King's movies have always been hit or miss because of the filmmaker's preconceptions. Unlike many horror authors, King's books are about one thing on top - usually a googly monster - and something far more serious underneath. Examples:

1. CUJO is about a rabid St. Bernard on top... and about the strains of failing marriages underneath.
2. IT is about a shape-shifting evil on top... and about the strength of childhood imagination and friendship underneath.
3. THE SHINING is about a haunted hotel on top... and about alcoholism as a personal demon underneath.
4. SALEM'S …

a man of the cloth

John Sentamu is now the first black archbishop in the Church of England.

(Brief organizational pause: The Church of England is the British part of the Anglican Communion. The Episcopal Church is the American part. So Sentamu is part of the greater communion, second only to the Archbishop of Canterbury, but not a direct superior to us Yanks. Got it? Good. I have a chart with colored pushpins if you need it.)

At first I was nervous, because Sentamu is from Uganda. Why such a reaction? It's the African bishops who have raised the most hell - pardon the expression - about we pesky Americans ordaining a gay bishop.

But Sentamu seems to be one of the good guys, as much as you can tell from newspaper accounts. Born the sixth of 13 children, he survived childhood illness and a famine to become a Ugandan barrister and judge. In the 1970s, he publicly criticized the Amin regime and was forced to flee Uganda for the U.K.

He studied theology at Cambridge, and intended to return to Uganda until t…

INFERNII

I've started a new book.

It's the third book in the NOCTURNAL URGES series, and so far I'm more excited about it than anything in years. It's the book that will transition the series out of erotic thrillers into straight horror. And we're starting with a bang. Literally.

It occurs to me that I really should be recording my thoughts as I work on this book. Here's what I've done to date:

MONDAY, NOV. 28
1,460 words

Got through the prologue. Don't like it. Will fix later.

Got into the Christmas party. Loved it. Everyone's dancing. Everyone's happy. Hail hail the gang's all here. It helps to have smart family - I needed Ryan to reference some kind of music popular at the end of the nineteenth century, but not fussy parlor music that he (as a member of the vampire underclass) would not have heard much. So I called my mother, classical music professor as she is, and within an hour she had half a dozen suggestions. Thanks Mom.

For the record, when Ryan di…