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Showing posts from 2009

Back to Ring Out 2009 and Ring In 2010

Yep! I'm back.

After taking a two-month sabbatical from my online presence in order to get a lot of work (and a grandbabies' first Christmas, house buying, lots of editing and submitting) out of the way, it's time for me to return to regular blogging.

And of course, I have a lot to talk about.

First off, the second book in the Covenants gothic vampire romance series I'm co-writing with Rob Graham is in our editor's hands and should be released through Aspen Mountain Press early in 2010. As soon as I have a release date for Warding the Covenants, I'll let you know.

Secondly, my ten book Greco-Roman mythology series, entitled (oddly enough) Mythos, has been bought by my great publisher at Aspen Mountain Press.  The first book, Bride of Death, is the story of the god of the Underworld, Hades, and his marriage to Persephone.  The second book, Daughter of the Sea, relates the myths surrounding Poseidon and Amphitrite.  For these books, I've gone back to the orig…

This Post Is Not About Writing

No, it isn't. This post is about babies--my baby specifically, who is being evaluated in the OB triage unit of her hospital and may be about to deliver her baby. Wow. My baby is having a baby. What the hell is that all about?

It's so terrible to see your kids in pain. All parents know this. There's a horrible feeling of helplessness that accompanies it--there's something that Mom (or Dad) can't kiss and make it feel better. It's heartbreaking and exciting all at once. My daughter, who is bright and beautiful and clever, has no clue what awaits her with labor and delivery. I don't believe in sharing horror stories and she thinks she deals better with things just walking into it blind. She may be right; I don't know. I'm one of those weird people who wants to know EVERYTHING that will happen. When I had my artificial disc replacement surgery, I went to the website of the company that manufactured the disc and watched a video of an actual surgery…

A Rare Day Off

Wow. What am I going to do today?

My editor's desk is cleared for the month and I have promised myself to take the rest of October off. I need to let the Greco-Roman mythology novella rest for a day or so before I revise it. Harlequin is percolating. Plague is stuck. I'm getting ready to go to Tennessee on Wednesday and then stay with my daughter until after the baby gets here.

So what am I going to do today?

Shannon is asleep; he worked overnight on a build. There's nothing on TV, unless you count the Scariest Places on Earth marathon on SyFy. (What a ridiculous name. SyFy. Marketing department-FAIL.) I've spent the last hour or so looking through real estate listings because I will find our new house soon and hopefully will be in it by Christmas.

Which, of course, is all dependent upon when the baby gets here. Have I told you her name yet? No? Audrey and her husband Wes decided on the name Aurora Elizabeth. *looks innocent* I have nothing to do with my granddaught…

New Plotline Brewing

Arrrrrrrgh!

Why won't the muses let me finish one story before dragging me ass-backwards into another? I'm getting kind of fascinated with urban fantasy and I'm looking for some directions in the genre that are different than a lot of the urban fantasy currently out there. Of course, there would be a romantic subplot--because I like writing romantic subplots--but for the most part, I want to write an urban fantasy with serious fantasy and horror influences.

I thought I'd start with a twenty-first century version of the plague and eliminate about 95% of the world population right off the bat--like in the first half of the first chapter. Why the plague, you ask?

*shrug*

Why not? It's my opinion that the right strain of an existing virus--the right mutation, if you will--could decimate the world population in days. Besides, I need to get rid of a bunch of people. The survivors would, of a necessity, be the hardiest of the human race. So, I'm thinking surviving th…

Long Time, No See

Gee--sorry, folks. Real life and my parents' internet-free zone have kept me out of the loop for weeks now. Add to that heinous editing deadlines, a new manuscript that just won't shut up and the kids and you'll understand my recipe for blogging disaster.

I'll try not to let it happen again. I promise.

At any rate, it's been kind of difficult to get my head on straight lately. To begin with, Harlequin, the sequel to my urban fantasy Deception Enters Stage Left, is cranking along at supersonic speed. Last week, I wrote almost 50,000 words on the manuscript and am seriously looking at closing the first draft out within days. Naturally, because I overwrite like a check fraud fanatic, that first draft is probably going to close out at 125k plus.

Because I can edit the heck out of anything, I'm thinking I'll be able to trim at least twenty-five thousand adverbs, dialogue tags and unnecessary scenes out of it. I'm really liking the story. I'm start…

Fifteen Minutes of Sunshine

Yep, so I'm taking my medicine.

I was actually prescribed--PRESCRIBED--fifteen minutes of sunshine per day. Now that it's pleasant outside and not nine hundred degree celsius, I'm actually going to obey my physician and leave my dungeon for a quarter of an hour everyday and sit in the sun.

I figure I can make myself productive and use the time to blog regularly. After all, I've not exactly been faithful to Elf Killing as of late; the Other Hobbies have been taking up most of my time.

Other Hobbies at this point would be editing.

Remember how happy I was last year when I got to the point that I could write full time? How excited I was that I could spend all day every day at my computer zipping out stories? Well, I got sidetracked into editing. Don't get me wrong: I like editing. I like seeing how other writers' stories come together. I like helping to make those stories a little bit better in between the writer and the reader. It's fascinating work.

*Is it…

A Little Perspective...From a Toy

I don't watch a lot of TV. I watch my DVR. That way, when I spend the day working I don't interrupt myself to go watch a favorite show. Then, when I'm done watching the show, I delete it. Entertainment on demand and I can skip through the commercials. It's a win-win situation.

Tonight I watched a show I will not be deleting.

There was a rerun of an Extreme Makeover: Home Edition tonight about the Frisch family in Toledo, Ohio. The Frisches are an extraordinary couple who, on a fireman's salary, have adopted five kids from Haiti and three from the US . They're raising them in addition to their own three boys--ages range from 4 to 18. I'm not going to go into detail about them or the show. I'd advise you to watch the show if you can. What I am going to talk about is something one of the kids said.

EHM arranged for trucks full of donated clothes, books and toys (donated by Hasbro!) to go to Haiti to a school there. While the family was vacationing in…

Sometimes Research Is Tricky

...especially when people you don't expect to be anywhere near you read the tabs open on your laptop. Latest moment of horror?

Imagine if you will--a completely innocent person walking by my beat-up laptop and finding about ten windows open on demonology and exorcisms?

Ye-eah. Here's the scene:

When I'm in a working frenzy, it may look like a disaster to other people but I always know where everything is. I'm one of those really annoying people with a little bit of knowledge about a lot of stuff, and that's reflected in my library. I have books spanning a full four millennia, but sometimes they don't provide me with everything I need. Because I like to be thorough in my research, I have to look things up online--if for no other reason than to find out where to go for real (as in book form) source material. So, I was working on my modern day retelling of the Bell Witch legend. I have the two major primary sources for that legend in book form, but I needed mo…

A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To...

Way back in the day, I was a member of the Junior Classical League in Clarksville, Tennessee. My two best friends throughout school, a pair of evil twins named Ed and Jim Long, and I competed for four years for our high school and our state. Every August around this time, we were off at the National Junior Classical League convention, from which we would emerge with lots of awards.

They won more than I did.

I was a two-trick pony. I was the school expert on classical mythology and I was the mean member of our certamen team. Certamen (the latin word for battle) is the JCL version of Quiz Bowl. I was mean and I was quick, so much so that our Latin teacher Grady Warren called me Fauces.

Jaws.

At any rate, we always had a blast. I was the one who had to be constantly watched. I was such a high-strung kid that disaster invariably followed me at conventions. My freshman year, I actually made it onto the lower level certamen team (almost unheard of) and wanted to win so badly. I spraine…

Melding New Ideas and a New Review

First, the good news.

The Asphodel Cycle 2: The Gift of Redemption has just been reviewed by ChrisChat Reviews. The book was given a four out of four rating! Here's part of what the reviewer had to say:

"...There have been times I have felt cheated when reading a fantasy quest…Ms. Summers never cheats. Each of her books is packed with intensity and gentleness. Still she leaves you craving more.While reading "Gift of Redemption" I felt there was an underlying meaning to Tamsen's journey. There is more to her adventure and battle, she is learning her own truth, her strength of being. How does a writer capture this? This is the craft of writing, which Ms. Summers dominates..."

Zoinks! My day is full of sunshine today! You can read the rest of the review at ChrisChat Reviews.

Now for the rest of the story.

Every once in a while, someone will say something that strikes a chord with me. My husband is particularly good at this. I've been futzing around wit…

Oh, The Horror!

Someone asked me once how I decide what stories to write. I responded that I write what I feel compelled to write.

Interestingly enough, lately I've been compelled to write horror.

After delving into the paranormal with Deception Enters Stage Left, I find myself splitting my writing time these days between two horror stories. One deals with the return of an ancient and well-documented (in real life) poltergeist and the other deals withs an entirely fictional demonic possession. Last week, working on the possession story, I actually scared myself enough to dig out my First Communion medal.

Needless to say, I was rather pleased.

Maybe it's because I'm facing horrors in my real life that I am currently drawn to the darker side of things. My husband and I are contemplating a move back to Tennessee. Normally, that wouldn't seem to be so horrible until you consider the terrors of packing up my entire household--including all the cats--and transporting it across two states. That&…

New Review for The Gift of Redemption!

Sorry I've been away for a while. I've been very busy with my family and adjusting to the whole grandmother thing. I think I'm finally caught up enough to get back into my normal routine of writing, editing, blogging and so forth and it just so happens that today I have something fabulous to talk about.

Wennonah Lyon, one of the outstanding reviewers at Novelspot, has reviewed The Asphodel Cycle 2: The Gift of Redemption. You may remember that she also reviewed The Reckoning of Asphodel; you can find a blurb and the link in the sidebar to your right.

At any rate, she gave Redemption an 8 out of 10 rating and some really kind words. For example:

The Asphodel Cycle should appeal to fans of Tolkien: high fantasy, noble characters, a world-changing quest. Like Tepper and Lackey, Ms. Summers presents a strong, likable and imperfect heroine with a good cast of supporting characters. If you like High Fantasy combined with romance, you should enjoy the series. I strongly recommen…

Patience, Young Grasshopper, Patience

Patience is most definitely my weak point. I don't have any.

Okay, maybe that was a mild exaggeration. I don't have much.

I've always expected everything to happen right NOW. When I was an actor, I expected (wanted? dreamed? prayed?) to be cast from the first moment I opened my mouth. After all, how hard was it? Obviously I was perfect for the part or else I wouldn't have auditioned right?

Right??!?

Writing, however, has taught me patience. Although I'm fast and prolific, you can't write a book in a day. Heck--you can't even write a good short story in a day. By the time you get the darn thing written and revised and edited and betaed and revised again and polished and queried and submitted, well...then you have to wait. An audition was a one-time thing, hit or miss, over and done with (unless you really struck a chord) within a few minutes. A book? Well, it's an investment. A huge investment if you want to be particular about it. I have books I'…

It's Out! Apostle of Asphodel Published by Aspen Mountain Press!

Well, it's finally done. The final book of my epic fantasy series The Asphodel Cycle has just been released. Apostle of Asphodel, the follow-up novel to Temptation of Asphodel is now available from Aspen Mountain Press.

Here's hoping that all of you Asphodel fans enjoy the conclusion of the story. After the other Asphodel novels did so well and won so much recognition, especially Temptation as a Preditor and Editor Top Ten Novel of the Year for 2008 and runner up to Christine Feehan's Murder Gamein the 2008 Golden Rose award voting, I'm praying that Apostle keeps the standards up.

I'll just go ahead and cheat and let you know that out of the four books in the series, Apostle is my favorite.

So now I have to ask myself--what's next? Is there another story down the road for Tamsen and Brial? There are other options in the Asphodel world for stories--the next generation, perhaps, or maybe a couple of secondary characters. I've played around a bit with some …

Apostle of Asphodel--Coming Friday!

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Well, The Asphodel Cycle is almost completed. *sniff* Tamsen and Brial's story is coming to an end. *sniff* So here's a little bit of a teaser to get you guys ready! You can read an excerpt at both my website and at the Aspen Mountain Press website. But for those of you who follow ye olde blog, here's a special snippet just for you.

The Asphodel Cycle 4: Apostle of Asphodel
Coming July 3, 2009 from Aspen Mountain Press!

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Brial had tumbled out of the way when the severed head fell to the floor. He ran to join Wilden, who was chopping away at the snake’s midsection. The two mages showered fire down upon the beast, keeping up a steady barrage of magical attack.


Rage boiled up within me once more. I could taste it, fiery and caustic against my tongue, as I watched my loved ones battle against this cursed beast of the underworld. It was only a matter of time before someone was hurt or killed in this fight.

Lamashtu sets her traps well. She knows only too well what the death of any…

Michael Jackson and My Youth--Dead on the Same Day

*Celina's note--this is an expanded version of a post I made at Absolute Write this afternoon when Michael Jackson's death was finally confirmed*

I was a little girl when Elvis died. Since I lived in Tennessee, we had wall to wall television coverage of the events in between the first rumors of his death to the end of his funeral cortege. It was the first major celebrity death I'd been exposed to and it impacted me quite strongly--strongly enough that thirty years later I still recall specific details of those three days. My younger aunts drove to Memphis for the funeral and we still have old Polaroid pictures of the funeral procession and the tens of thousands of people who crowded the streets around Graceland--a mass of humanity that continued for weeks as loyal fans filed by Elvis' house.

At the time Elvis died, we were learning Michael Jackson songs in my youth chorus. I was staying at my grandparents' house. It was my father's 45th birthday. My younger broth…

Seasons of Life Turn Another Notch

Wow, I've been swamped lately.

First and foremost, I'm proud to announce that I am now a grandmother. My daughter gave birth to her daughter Keelynn Shea, who weighed in at 7 lbs 7 oz. Keelynn and Meredith are both doing fine.

I never thought about being a grandmother when I was still this young. I mean, after all, I'm only 42. My grandmothers when I was a kid were, well, old. They had gray hair and lots of wrinkles and wore old lady clothes and carried old lady purses and had old lady shoes with practical heels and old lady hairdos, short and curly and poufy on top. I don't look anything like my concept of a grandmother. My hair isn't grey, I wear it in a ponytail, I don't have wrinkles and I wear tank tops and jeans. I definitely don't wear practical heels.

But, still, the inevitable circle of seasons in the human life span has turned another notch for me. Last week, I could still consider myself young. This week, for whatever purposes I can come up wit…

My Inability To Understand Human Nature

Human nature is a copout. I've been hearing about human nature my whole life. People excuse all sorts of behavior with that little phrase. "Oh, it's no big deal. It's just human nature--"

As if it's 'human nature' to lie or cheat or steal. As if, by token of being born into this species at this stage of evolution we are justified somehow to behave as we please. Unfortunately, I'm no good at deciphering 'human nature.' I find myself, frequently, wondering why it is people act the way they do.

What makes this even more disturbing is that as a writer, my job is to understand human nature. After all, it's that indefinable quality that makes characters have the quirks they do. We create these imaginary people and then we give them personalities and inside those personalities, human nature comes into play. BUT as writers, we have to rely on more than human nature to make a character work. For example, if a character lies we can't ju…

Some More News

Just a brief blog post today with some news for you:

Breaking the Covenants is now available on Mobipocket. You can check it out here. It will soon be available on Amazon, Fictionwise and other major online retailers. So far, the feedback has been excellent and Rob and I are working busily on the second Covenants novel, Warding the Covenants, which will be released this summer by Aspen Mountain Press.

BUT, even more importantly--notice the new countdown clock? That's right! The Asphodel Cycle 4: Apostle of Asphodel will be released on June 19, 2009! I'm really excited. There's nothing more fun than releasing the last book in a series. Ready to find out the end of Tamsen's story? It's only thirty seven days away!

A Writer's Four Most Basic Tools

Okay, let's have a frank discussion about what you, the writer, must have in order to be successful.

Before anything--before a great story or vivid characters or a knockout plot or an original voice--a writer must have the basic subset of tools that permit you to practice this craft adequately. You cannot be a good writer until you have mastered this list. Period. Before you even think about hitting 'send' on that next submission, step back, take a good, hard look at your work and make certain that you meet this criteria.

1. Correct spelling. I cannot emphasize this enough. Writers use words. You will lose all credibility right from the get-go if you don't spell those words correctly. If spelling is an issue for you, you need to work on it. The basic rules of spelling like "i before except after c" or knowing the difference between homonyms need to be second nature for you. If you get hung up on they're/there/their, then work on the rule until you memo…

Chat Debacles and Book Release Day!

Nothing like a book release day to get your spirits up...

Which I sorely needed after the debacle of last night. I was all set to do an author's chat at Absolute Write (every Thursday, the chat room there is devoted to SFF). I'd even made notes. My chat was going to be about world building, new mythology and fantasy archetypes. So I'm cruising about Absolute Write about half an hour beforehand, being my usual smarmy self, and the bleeping power went out!

We had some pretty high winds yesterday and the substation down the street blew. So here I am, frantically emailing people on my cell phone, trying to get word to the AW chatmasters that I was having a little problem. I felt like a colossal heel (and a warm one since I didn't get my power back until about six am this morning) because now that's two scheduled events I've missed in the last two weeks--and neither one of them was my fault.

*sigh*

Hopefully we can get it rescheduled. I'll let you know. However…

It's Almost Time For Vampires--And Some Winners!

Yay! Breaking the Covenants is coming out this Friday--after an unforeseen and regrettable delay last week. Rob and I are very excited. We've worked hard on this project (still are--there are more books in it, after all) and are anxious to see what our readers think. For those of you who read the Asphodel series, a moment of warning--this is MUCH different from my fantasy work.

Vampires are fun though. Not as much fun as killing Elves, but what could be?

Tomorrow night I'm doing a chat for writers in the Absolute Write chat room at 9 pm EST. Just click the chat room link at the top of the page. I'll be discussing world building, fantasy archetypes and new mythology--and might very well give a book or two away in the process. Bring your questions and be ready to have a good time!

As for winners---yes I promised you some of those:

Winner of a copy of The Reckoning of Asphodel--Marianne Stephens!

Winner of a copy of Metamorphosis--Babyblue22!

Winner of a copy of The Vampire Covenan…

Contest!

Because a family emergency is preventing me from attending a scheduled chat, I'm running a biiiiiiiiig contest today. You can find details on Love Romances ECafe.

Just shout out in the comments of this post, and you can win too!

So sorry--I hate to post and run, but I have to get on the road.

Have You Noticed...

...the proliferation and, in fact, glorification of truly ugly people these days? I'm not talking about physical beauty. Some of the ugliest people I know are physically the most beautiful. I'm talking about ugliness of the soul.

I have the television on today for background noise and, because there is absolutely nothing else on, I've had it on the Oxygen channel. After surviving the hell that is an America's Next Top Model marathon, following it up with the show Pretty Wicked has been horrific. Here are all of these lovely young women with absolutely the ugliest souls, personalities and intellects I have ever encountered in my life. I don't even know these people and I am ashamed for them.

Ashamed.

Granted, our society is geared toward the physically attractive. We are pummeled with commercials for weight loss products, cosmetics, clothes and hair care crap from morning to night. Save for the Dove real beauty campaign (which convinced me to spend my money on t…

Celina, The Wedding Coordinator

I am singularly blessed with my daughters.

Both of them have grown up to be lovey young women. They're smart and working to better themselves. They're independent and likely to remain that way. This weekend, my oldest girl is marrying her fiance' and her sister, who got married last month, is her matron of honor.

Here's where it gets funny.

I hate weddings. I was a caterer for far too long to enjoy weddings. I've set up weddings with over five hundred guests--where indulgent parents spend the equivalent of a house to give their daughters a proper sendoff into the traditional earmark of adult life. I never had a problem charging these people a hundred grand for their sit down dinners with passed hor d'ouerves and a pianist playing until the dance started and everything degenerated into the chicken dance. I always thought that my younger daughter would be the one who'd want a big wedding, but surprisingly and thankfully they just went to the courthouse an…

Breaking The Covenants--More News

Hurray! The website for our Vampire Covenants world is up and running! Go check out http://thevampirecovenants.bravehost.com/index.html so that you can find out about our world and how we make our vampires work.

I'm getting really excited by this. Yes, I know there's a lot of people writing about vampires these days but this isn't an urban fantasy. Our vampires are moving through the world of the eighteenth century, when the vampire paranoia was so great that the latter half of the century is called the 'great vampire controversy.' We send them to London, Paris, St. Petersburg, Venice--some of the greatest cities of the era. We take the conventional vampire mythology back to the reader--no sparkling for our vampires, not that sparkling is bad.

A love that blossoms in life can only flower in death.

And this is one hell of a love story. Go check it out and drop back by and tell me what you think!

When the Muse Calls...

...I suppose I have to answer.

I hadn't intended to start writing again until after the first Covenants book was released. Between the wedding and edits and book releases, my plate is fairly full. But today, the muse got angry.

She screamed.

She threw things.

She drank all the beer in the fridge.

Then she informed me, in no uncertain terms, that I was going to by God start writing on a companion piece to Deception Enters Stage Left and that the topic was not open for discussion. Yeah, I know. I'm stupid but I can't help myself. Last night, during the daily struggle to go to sleep at a respectable time, I got this image in my head. I was about half-asleep and I mumbled to the husband to just remind me at some point today about one word.

Harlequin.

It was almost the first thing he said to me today and my muse has been having a fit ever since. While I was doing wedding stuff, I was thinking about harlequins. Promo work? Harlequins. Business stuff? Harlequins. Everywhere I'…

Covenants Cover Art!

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Yay! We have cover art for Breaking the Covenants which will be released on April 24th by Aspen Mountain Press!

Hopefully, I'll survive my daughter's wedding this week and can get back into blogging regularly. Here's hoping. But, until then, take a gander at this cover (artwork, as always, by the lovely and effervescent Renee George). Rob and I are both pleased and I'm starting to get excited for the release. You may notice in the hour or so after this post that a new countdown clock has been started. It would be the Covenants countdown. *grin* I love writing.

Metamorphosis is Released!

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Today's the big day--my short story collection Metamorphosis is being released by Aspen Mountain Press. It's my ode to my classical idol Ovid and his great work Metamorphoses.

Metamorphosis is a journey through the short stories of critically acclaimed author Celina Summers. Every story deals with a transformation--from a world where the Church places the blame for original sin upon men to a New Orleans garden that brings a play to life. The collection culminates with a previously unpublished prequel to Summers' best selling epic fantasy series The Asphodel Cycle. Sometimes funny, sometimes horrifying, Metamorphosis is a romp through the realms of speculative fiction--where anything can happen and nothing is quite as it seems. You can find Metamorphosis at http://www.aspenmountainpress.com/new-releases/metamorphosis/prod_226.html -- where you can read an excerpt from one of my stories, Funeral Meats. It will also be available soon on Fictionwise, Amazon, Mobipocket, Kindle …

Do You Believe in Miracles?

I've been thinking a lot lately about how close the extraordinary truly is to the mundane. What does it take to make a normal happenstance evolve into something amazing? What sort of chrysalis does the everyday world take shelter in so that it can emerge into a new universe and take flight?

Some might say it's God. I refuse to discuss religion in this blog, unless it's one I made up or one that died out thousands of years ago, so I'll leave that distinction up to you.

Others might think that extraordinary circumstances create extraordinary people--that when destiny demands it, there are some few incredible mortals who can rise above themselves and transcend into something more, something we can only hope to achieve or dream to attain. Still others, when thrust into the same circumstances, are unable to do the same. Why is that? How is it that some succumb meekly to their perceived fate while others fight against it in search of something greater?

If you can answer this…

Holy Crap! A Golden Rose Nomination???

I nearly fainted when I found out that Temptation of Asphodel had been nominated for a Golden Rose Award for Best Sci Fi/Fantasy Novel of 2007 by Love Romances and More--especially when I saw my idol Christine Feehan's name on the nomination list too. I mean, think about it. Here I am, in the middle of the night (darned insomnia) and I find something like this out?

Wow. Someone hand me the vodka. I need a drink.

But then I started to think about it and I realized what a huge thing that is. For a new writer such as myself, who writes for a small, independent press to even be considered alongside a forerunner in genre romance--a giant, if you will--is a testament to how e-publishing has changed the face of the writing world. The perception that writers who publish with smaller presses are somehow inferior or untalented is fading. There's a heck of a lot of good fiction out there in the small presses and e-publishing houses these days. Now, I'm not saying that I consider my…

Life's Little Ironies

This has been a week of ironic suspense in my world. All I want to do is write, but first I have to get all that editing done. All I want to do is go out, but I'm laid up flat on my back for another couple of days at least. All I want to think about is this new idea I dreamed up this week, but I don't have the time to start on it.

I've discovered it is possible to function on a pseudo-intellectual level on less than two hours of sleep. For eight days. Straight.

I feel the cusp of a writing binge coming on. This one's going to be big, I know. I have one novel out on agent queries, another out on a small house submission, one contracted to be written, one ready for the second draft, two ready for pre-publication edits and one coming out in a week. Yeah, I've been just a little busy. Don't even think about mentioning the promotional nightmare the next few months are going to be, especially with the last Asphodel novel coming out in May.

Then on the personal front,…

Let Me Tell You a Story About Vampires

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I've had several people ask me the same question over the last few weeks that I think bears answering.

"Celina, why are you writing a vampire novel? The vampire craze is dead."

They blame it all on Twilight. I haven't read Twilight so I can't really comment on that. But here's the story of how the Vampire Covenants Trilogy came about.

I was talking to Sandra Hicks one afternoon (she's the publisher of Aspen Mountain Press) and mentioned that I thought it would be a good idea if some of the AMP writers got together and co-wrote novels. My first thought was that if writing a romance, we should pair a female writer and a male writer--the woman would write the heroine's point of viewand the man the hero's. She thought that was a great idea and followed it up with, "So, who are you going to write with?"

I didn't even have to think about it. Rob Graham is a friend of mine, we'd talked online and done chats together and I liked his unique w…

Metamorphosis

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Here it is--the long promised cover for Metamophosis, my collection of short stories being released by Aspen Mountain Press on March 27, 2009! Pretty sweet, huh? Thought you might like it.


Metamorphosis

Metamorphosis
is a journey through the short stories of critically acclaimed author Celina Summers. Every story deals with a transformation--from a world where the Church places the blame for original sin upon men to a New Orleans garden that brings a play to life. The collection culminates with a previously unpublished prequel to Summers' best selling epic fantasy series The Asphodel Cycle. Sometimes funny, sometimes horrifying, Metamorphosis is a romp through the realms of speculative fiction--where anything can happen and nothing is quite as it seems.
Coming March 27, 2009 from Aspen Mountain Press.

This collection was edited by my very good friend and outstanding writer in her own right, Lori Basiewicz. You can check out her pet project Trunk Novels for some outstanding pieces of l…

Read an Ebook Week! And a contest...

This week is Read an Ebook Week and so, in honor of the occasion, I'm giving some lucky person all three Asphodel novels absolutely for free! All you have to do is shout out in the comments portion of this thread and you're entered. At the end of the week, I'll draw a winner and that person will get to Read not just one Ebook, but Three! That way you'll be all ready for the release of The Asphodel Cycle 4: Apostle of Asphodel when it comes out in May.

So this is Read Three Ebooks Week in Elf-Killing land--welcome aboard. It's also a good time to check out my fan page at Facebook and join up. That's the first place to look for news these days.

I just got the cover art for Metamorphosis--it's WONDERFUL. I'll share it with you guys later.

Making Something Old Something Better

I run into a lot of conversations among authors about tropes, archetypes and cliches. "How can I write without using the cliches?" "Anyone who writes about Elves is stealing from Tolkien." "There's no way to write something new."

I usually end up in arguments about this. As a classical mythologist, I am convinced that archetypal themes and characters aren't the anathema so many writers think they are. Sure, you don't necessarily want to write abouta farmboy-turned-savior with a magical sword, an ancient mentor skilled in the ways of magic and the stock secondary characters of the D & D world. However, that doesn't mean you have to avoid them either. The hero's journey, as identified by Joseph Campbell, is a route that all good adventures follow. There is a certain path a writer must follow in order to create a hero. And while you don't have to hit every earmark that Campbell identified, you need to hit at least some of th…