12/29/13
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Zombies Past and Future Contest Winners

Thanks to all of you who participated in the Zombies Past and Future Giveaway. Stant Litore and I received a flood of support and new subscribers to our newsletters, and we truly appreciate it. Although there were only four winners of the book packages, all of you are winners in the cosmic, lucky-in-life sense, because you get to hear about all the new stuff that Stant and I are up to, and you get to know the sad, sordid details of my everyday life. Um. Okay, well there were four winners, anyway.

 

And the winners are:

1. Jen Jensen
2. Randy Lewis
3.Beverly Matthews
4. Jeremy Dick

If you are one of those four people, you should expect to get copies from me and three of the top selling zombie writers in America. Thanks again for you support and interest in my work (and that of Stant Litore). I look forward to sharing some news very soon!

 

12/7/13

Zombie Madness Giveaway!

Hey everybody! This has been going on for bit but I’ve had my own madness going on this week. (Yeah I know, …only madness will save us. But too much madness will kill us.) My good friend and fellow 47North writer, Stant Litore, has organized a giveaway of four of the best zombie novels ever printed (well, three and mine). How do you win? Simply subscribe to his newsletter and mine by entering your email down below. Four people will win a copy of all four books.

I’m not joking when I say that all three of these writers are heavy hitters in the genre. So sign up now and win!

Enter to win this package of zombie novels!

litore_sitlscourge-cover Valley of the Dead by Kim Paffenroth Frater

4 winners will be randomly selected after December 20, 2013 to receive a holiday package of US kindle editions of all four of these critically acclaimed novels. Each novel takes the zombie apocalypse to a distant century.

Win All 4 Ebooks in the ZOMBIES PAST & FUTURE Giveaway! 

Entering the giveaway also allows you to receive future updates from novelists Stant Litore and Roberto Calas. Eligibility: You need to live in the US — and like kindle books!

Each winner will receive a copy of all four novels — or the chance to designate someone they would like the prizes gifted to!

Surprise someone this holiday season with 4 zombie plagues that reach across all of human history!

Enter today.

Here’s what you can expect in each of these great reads:

litore_sitlSTRANGERS IN THE LAND by Stant Litore1160 BC. You’ve read about the 10 Plagues of Egypt. Now read about the time ancient Israel and one aging prophetess faced a plague of the walking dead.

 

 

 

Valley of the Dead by Kim PaffenrothVALLEY OF THE DEAD by Kim Paffenroth13th Century. During his exile from Florence, Dante Alighieri encounters an eastern Europe where the savagery of the dead is exceeded only by the cruelties of the living, in harrowing scenes that inspire his Inferno.

 

 

 

scourge-coverTHE SCOURGE by Roberto Calas14th Century. In this retelling of the Black Death, Sir Edward of Bodiam and two of his knights search for Sir Edward’s wife across a nightmarish and zombie-infected England.

 

 

 

FraterLAST BASTION OF THE LIVING by Rhiannon FraterDistant Future.Vanguard Maria Martinez has lived her entire life within the towering walls of steel that protect the last survivors of humanity from the Inferi Scourge. Now she has been offered the opportunity to reclaim the lands outside her walled city, but she may have to sacrifice everything to do it.

 

 

So what’s the delay? Enter now!

12/4/13
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New Short Story: Wages of Sin

Hi everyone. On the heels of my Kickstarter announcement and sample pages from THE SCOURGE: EMACULUM yesterday, I get to talk about something that I have been sitting on for months. My short story, THE WAGES OF SIN, is being published by StoryFront, Amazon’s new short-fiction imprint and is available for just 99 cents.

The story is technically classified as a historical fiction (more on that below). Here’s the description:

The haunting story of a man in fourteenth-century England who exists in the moral hinterland between life and death.

Francis, stricken by the plague, is absolved of his sins by a priest and pronounced dead. But when he inexplicably comes back to life, his friends and family see him as an abomination without a soul. He is chased from his village and begins a new life doling out deadly justice on behalf of a vengeful bishop. Francis is a man more dead than alive until a beguiling woman in an alehouse cuts through the numbness. Alicia is a highborn redhead who brings light to his darkness and makes him question everything he believes.

The Wages of Sin by Roberto Calas examines the often blurry line between right and wrong, and love’s remarkable ability to bring us back to life.

The story is very loosely tied in to the stories of THE SCOURGE trilogy. If you read it, see if you can spot the subtle connections.

Thanks again for all of your support! One more announcement coming up this week. I’ll give details on that one tomorrow.

 

12/3/13
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The Scourge: Emaculum Kickstarter (and a sample)!

Many of you have already gotten the news, but for those that have not, 47North will not be publishing book 3 of the Scourge. I will be self-publishing the novel. This is actually a good thing in many ways. I get full creative control and I will make more money per unit sold. But it is also a challenge in some ways: I have to hire my own editors and pay for my own publicity. So, to try and raise money for those costs, I have started a Kickstarter campaign.

If you haven’t heard of Kickstarter, it’s a website that lets others invest in a project you are working on. Backers pledge a certain amount of money for the project and, in return, the backers get rewards according to the amount the have pledged. It’s a win-win for both sides. Some of the rewards include signed copies of my books, a mention in the acknowledgements, a character named after you, you even have a chance to be my patron and have the book dedicated to you. And if the campaign is successful, it will lead to the publication of the third and final book in The Scourge trilogy. And what a book it will be! I’ll have a teaser for it down below. But before I get to that, here’s the link to the project (complete with the self-conscious, badly cut, deer-in-the-headlights video that I did for the Kickstarter campaign) (may I never have to make another video again).

If everyone who has read my books donates even $1, I’ll have enough to cover my costs tenfold. But if you can’t pledge (and I know very well what that’s like), feel free to spread the word about the campaign. The more people you tell, the more chance of the book getting published at the same quality as the other two in the series. Every bit helps.

I have started writing the book already and I honestly believe that it will be the best of the trilogy. The writing is flowing. Edward is leading me and I am merely documenting the journey. I’m really excited about The Scourge: Emaculum, and hopefully you will be too. I’ve included an unedited teaser of the first three pages or so (sign up for my newsletter and you will receive the entire first chapter in the next week or so). It may change in the process, hopefully you’ll enjoy this snippet of what I have written.

Men will follow anyone.

I have watched fools lead battalions, and cowards command armies. I have met lecherous bishops who guide flocks upon the paths of morality, and madmen who rule entire kingdoms. And I have learned, in my days upon this earth, that it is not the wisest or bravest or even the most sensible who lead; it is the loudest.

And Sir Gerald of Thunresleam is a loud enough to wake the dead.

His mad shouts echo through the sparse forest. “No!” he screams. “In a line! Stay in a line!”

Sir Tristan and I pause at an ivy-draped alder to recover. I unsling the leather sack that hangs from my shoulder and Tristan does the same. Each breath I take sears my lungs, echoes in my helm. I am too old to be running in armor. Hounds howl and the deep thud of hoof-beats rings out behind us. The rain creates applause on the leaves above.

“Tell . . .  tell me that lovely story again, Edward,” Sir Tristan pants as he speaks, one hand on his thigh, the other holding a crossbow against his shoulder. “You had a . . . a cannon pointed at Gerald . . . a flame . . . inches from the touch-hole. I . . . I forget the next part. Tell me again what you did?”

I take great gulps of air and grunt at Tristan. He knows what I did; I lowered the cannon and let Gerald escape. I have run from Sir Gerald from the time his master, Sir John of Muckinge, died in battle. Sir John was torn apart by the mindless victims of this new plague that has rotted England. I suppose Sir John’s death is my fault – I led the plaguers to the battlefield where he died – but neither apologies nor denials will sate Sir Gerald’s lunatic thirst for revenge. The madman has tried to kill me more times than I care to recall, and when I had him in my power, I let him go.

Sir Gerald does not seem to appreciate my act of mercy.

Tristan and I left St. Benet’s Abbey two days after capturing it, and we caught sight of our pursuers after less than three miles of traveling. Ten horsemen and two dozen footmen appeared on the horizon, every one of them sworn to Sir Gerald.

Men will follow anyone.

Father Aubrey, a priest back home, once told me that men are like wolves. He said we hunt in packs so we can slaughter more lambs, and the man with the loudest howl leads us all. I smiled and asked if women were the lambs in his metaphor. A peculiar look came over him as he shook his head.

“No,” he replied. “A woman is the hunger that burns in the belly of the wolf. The hunger that makes him slaughter the lamb.”

Father Aubrey is a strange man.

My woman, Elizabeth, lies plagued in the cathedral of Saint Edmund’s Bury, and my belly rages with hunger for her. I have slaughtered an uncountable number of innocent lambs while trying to get her back, and I fear there will be more butchery before my journey is done.

Sir Gerald will be the first on that butcher’s block.

A stocky man in ring mail and a flat-topped nasal helm stumbles through shrubs and draws up only a few feet away. His eyes grow wide when he sees us. “They’re here!” He draws his sword. “Sir Gerald, I have them! They’re—”  Tristan’s dagger catches the man in the throat and the shout becomes a gurgle. My sigh is a hiss inside the great helm.

Sir Gerald will have to be the second on the butcher’s block.

The man’s body relaxes and Tristan lets it fall to the sodden earth. I notice a red ribbon tied around the soldier’s arm, his lady’s favor. A sign of the hunger that burned in this man’s stomach.  But this wolf will slaughter no more lambs.

The wailing of hounds grows louder from the east. Horsemen bob through the trees. The footmen crack branches with their footfalls and shuffle through dead leaves.

Tristan cleans the blade of his dagger on the red ribbon. He squints at the oncoming men and tries to smile. “I hear the west side of the forest is lovely this time of year.”

I take a last look at the dead man, sling my shoulder sack, and lurch westward through the forest. Cold water from the wet leaves sprays my cheeks through the air holes in my helm. I shove at the grasping branches with my shield. We cannot outrun our pursuers forever. I wonder how Sir Gerald will kill us. On our last meeting, he threatened to skin us like rabbits and piss on our pulp. He may be mad but he is creative in his madness.

I glance back at Tristan and think of all the times I have put his life in danger. Death’s skeletal fingers have brushed our shoulders too many times to count, but today I can feel his bony hand on my throat. Tristan sees me looking and blows a kiss, then picks up his pace so he is directly behind me.

Men will follow anyone.

 

If there’s any man I would follow, it’s Sir Edward Dallingridge. Thanks very much for your continued support. Let’s get Edward back to his Lady Elizabeth!