Bangor Toy and Comic Con Recap

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photo courtesy of Jennifer Hobbs

Yes. LONG TIME NO SEE!

I’ve been quite busy being sick, and working, and writing up a storm! While I haven’t made much way on the “finding a house” front, I’m still looking and hope to find something that will prove to be a lovely home for Lemon Jelly and I. I also spent the last weekend hanging out with fellow writing geeks (and possibly several freaks) at Bangor Toy and Comic Con!

This was my first time doing this particular Con, although I am no stranger to the Comic Con scene. I’ve done three now and have found that the experience only gets better and better. The first thing one should know about working a Comic Con is that there is a lot of visual stimuli, a feast for the eyes, if you will. I spent much of my two days observing the array of colorful costumes (some of which you cannot unsee) and soaking in the energized atmosphere.

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Busy Sickly Update…

That feeling you get after you’ve been in bed with a terrible headache ALL WEEKEND…and now, it’s your day to go back to work and you SUDDENLY feel better?

That’s been my weekend, folks.

I managed to get the most demonic headache, a combination of sinus, stress, and muscle all rolled up in a ball and tossed at my head. The sinus part was caused by a Calamondin tree that I have in my apartment (or should I say “had”). The Calamondin is a strange mini fruit tree that has a tiny orange fruit that tastes much like a lime. For some reason, despite it being November, this tree has been rapidly blooming and growing more little oranges. Our weather here in Maine has been warmer than it should be and for some reason, this tree is just absolutely loving it. Problem is that the pollen from these little flowers is super potent and my entire apartment smells like them. One day of sitting here breathing it in made my head feel like I was in Willy Wonka’s tunnel of craziness. The tree is now at my parent’s house after my mom gratefully came and picked it up.

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Inspiration Through Music: Bat For Lashes

I write about vampires. I’m not ashamed of this nor am I embarrassed by it. Sure, you may be saying to yourself, “Everyone is doing it right now.” And you’d be partially correct. There’s a whole vampire explosion that’s happened in the literary world ever since a certain series that shall not be named emerged several years ago. But you’ll also agree that the majority of these books are paranormal romance. Now, I’ll be painfully clear: The Monstrum Chronicles is not a paranormal romance series. There may be hints of crushes, sexual innuendos, and even a few on page kisses here and there but romance is not the sole focus of the series. This series is best described as “The DaVinci Code” with vampires. Oh, and without the religion. But like I said, here and there, there are hints of romance through out the books sprinkled in the background. The reasoning for this makes some sense. Vampires are meant to show our inner most desires fleshed out and exposed to the world. They were human at one point and so a human side must be shown in contrast with their monster. What’s more human than love? And let’s be honest, vampires can be pretty sexy (as long as they’re not sparkling.) Unfortunately for me, I’m not the most wonderful writer when it comes to romance. However, it helps that I have one musical group that I can listen to for inspiration on anything vampire: Bat For Lashes.

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June “Vox” Promo and Other Summer Suprises to Come!

Good morning, readers!

I have good news. I have “Aequitas: Book 2 of the Monstrum Chronicles” back in my grasp for the last round of editing. I hope to finish it this week (in reality, it will probably take me 2 weeks). Then I’ll begin the oh so painful process of formatting the book into a PDF file. And so I have concluded that Book 2’s release date will indeed be this fall. In fact, it will be a little sooner than I thought it would be.  The release date has now been scheduled for October 4th, 2012!

In the mean time, I’m running a couple of special promos on “Vox: Book 1 of the Monstrum Chronicles.” The first starts this week and ends on Sunday, June 24th. For a limited time, “Vox” will be available for only $0.99! This special pricing will begin this evening and run until Sunday morning at 7, eastern time. You can find the book by clicking on this link here.

Later this summer, I’ll also be holding a photo contest for the cover of Book 3. I had attempted to take a photograph myself and it turns out my photography skills really aren’t that fantastic. More details will emerge on this in July.

I will also be releasing several short stories this summer with events that pertain to The Monstrum Chronicles series. There are three in the line up and the first will probably be released in August, the next two in September. I’m very excited to get those out and introduce people to a new set of characters that will be integral to the events of “Aequitas.”

With that being said, I will now return to my editing of “Aequitas.” I’m currently on Chapter 8!

Have a wonderful week! And stay tuned for my Cooking Adventures blog tomorrow!

~KSilva

Creating Memorable Characters

Good morning, readers!

In the last few days, I’ve finished reading The Hunger Games and watched the entire second season of Downton Abbey. In both the book and the television series, I find myself longing to return to the lives of the characters I so fell in love with. Thankfully, I have Catching Fire (the second book in the Hunger Games Trilogy) to read. But what of Downton Abbey? Alas, I’ll have to wait for the next season. But I will because I am so enamored of the storyline and the people who populate it.

When you fall in love with certain characters, you have an immediate loyalty to them. You want to follow them on their journey. You want to see more of them. You’re compelled to stick by them through whatever happens and you’re determined to make sure that they get what they deserve, whether good or bad. There are several characters in books and television shows that I remember from years ago that I miss. And I found myself wondering this morning, why is that? Why are they so much more stained in my memory than others? What are the makings of a memorable character?

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The Monstrum Chronicles Cast… I Wish

Good evening, readers!

A while back, I promised to write a post showing you a few of the choice actors I would pick for some of the main characters in The Monstrum Chronicles series. Everyone will imagine a different person filling the characters shoes, but to me, these are the people who I envision every time I write their characters. This is meant to be a short, fun post. I’ve honestly been so crazy busy this past week I haven’t been able to blog much. And that makes me a silly goose. Once I get passed this week, I’ll be able to focus a little bit more on things and I’m excited for that! But… back to the casting of the Monstrum Chronicles…

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Limbo: A Short and Sweet Soundtrack for Horror Writers

Good morning,

I have a nightly ritual. Check the social media sites, and then hunker down to watch some video game commentaries by Harshly Critical. They are always entertaining and are always a mood lifter if I’ve had a particularly rough day. Yes, another shock of information about me: I adore certain video games. I’m very picky about them. In the past, they have helped to inspire some of my writing, ie: Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver was a huge influence behind “Vox”.

At the moment, HC has been doing a playthrough of a little known indie game called “Limbo.” It has black and white 2D graphics. The simple premise is that you play as a young boy who is trying to make his way through a series of hostile environments to find his sister. There’s no dialogue, there are no epic cutscenes, and it’s extremely linear. But, it’s one hell of a game.

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Aequitas! A sneak peek at what’s ahead!

Good Morning!

The last two days, I’ve been able to do get out of bed. Migraine, head cold, sore throat… it’s been a miserable time. Even today, I’m still not back on my feet completely. I’ve successfully used up two boxes of kleenex, drained a pot of chicken soup, and was successful in making my cat sympathetically sick as well. He left little presents for me on my carpet yesterday.

Dreadful as I feel, I have returned to the blog to do what I said I was going to do, update you on what you can expect to see in “Aequitas”.

I don’t want to give too much away but I do want to give you a brief synopsis of who will be returning, the new characters you’ll meet and some of the bloodlines that feature prominently in book 2.

MAIN CHARACTERS RETURNING!

A few times, I’ve mentioned that Reid and Torrent will both be back in the sequel. Unlike “Vox” where we went back and forth between three pov (Torrent’s, Eileen’s, and Sean’s), “Aequitas” will slingshot between Reid and Torrent, whose stories will come together eventually. Torrent was the major protagonist in “Vox” and it was his story that we got to know the most. In “Aequitas”, it will be Reid who we learn the most about.

Aside from Reid and Torrent returning, we will see the return of Eileen (though not as a principal protagonist), Vinh (Akane’s childe), and the Councilmen. Sean and Jill will both return for a short period.

NEW CHARACTERS!

An old ex-Council friend of Reid’s will join him in his adventures. Sassy, charming, and dangerous, Cardea is a Nephythys not to be trifled with. Will she and Reid be able to trust one another after the terrible events that shattered their friendship years ago?

Harper is Torrent’s first fledgling and the one who reported him to the Council of Thema after he destroyed Seraphim City. Harper has been elected as the replacement Citius judge on the Council. But does he have more sinister intentions with his new post?

We’ll also meet Reid’s sire, The Artigiani di Alta, a group of Kume artisans with connections to both Reid and Torrent, and the mysterious Leach, a figure with connections to a series of macabre murders occurring all over the globe.

LOCATIONS!

For fans of “Vox”, you already know how I love to send my characters globe-trotting in my books. In “Aequitas,” the characters will travel to several exotic and dark locations including but not limited to:

Linz, Austria

 

 Montreal, Canada

 

Istanbul, Turkey

and finally,

MAINE!!

(P.S. Epic stuff happens here.)

BLOODLINES!

In “Vox,” we learned allot about the Citius, Amalric, Savaric, and Haru bloodlines because the characters spent a bunch of time in their home territories.

In “Aequitas,” we will learn more about:

The Elias (Reid’s bloodline)

The Kume

The Nephythys

and The Rain!

AND THAT’S JUST THE BEGINNING…

A dangerous monstrum unlike anything Torrent and Reid have faced before, zombies (or as Torrent would say “Aegruses”), giant man-eating fish, an underground red market, big guns, more blood, lots of water, and plenty of fire…

Oh yes. It’ll be one thrill-ride of a book.

Next week, I will reveal a few songs from the Aequitas Soundtrack! I’ll also treat you to the “If The Monstrum Chronicles were to be a movie, who would play the main characters?” post. And I’ll be sure to keep you updated on tips, tricks, and other writing-related blog posts as I see fit!

Now, off to revise (and then probably nap!) Hopefully this cold will mostly gone by the end of the week!

KSilva

[EDIT: There was apparently an issue with the source of some of the pictures that I posted. Everything should be fixed now.]

Happy New Year!

Hello all! Happy New Year!

Even though I desperately wanted to avoid getting sick, I have become so within a days time. As I languish here on my couch with a box of tissues and some very strong coffee this morning, I’d like to provide you a link to my updated twitter site. I spent some time making it over yesterday. I also, somehow, managed to snag 10 new followers yesterday! That was a pretty awesome thing to wake up to this morning.

http://www.twitter.com/katherinesilva_

Have a peek! If you haven’t followed me yet, please go ahead! I’ll be spending much more time on it this year in hopes of reaching out to people all over the world!

Tomorrow, I’ll have more fun tidbits of information about “Vox” and “Aequitas” as well as some upcoming news about a reading/signing in March!

For now, everyone have a fun and amazing start to the new year!

~KSilva

Goodbye 2011! Hello 2012!

Good morning, readers!

Today marks the end of 2011. And though this year was a year of wonderful opportunities and many crazy happenstances, I can happily say that I’m ready to see it go.

2011 was a year of many firsts for me. First book signing, first time having a book on Kindle, first book-reading… etc. All of these experiences have opened my eyes to how truly great the world of self-publishing really is. It’s the latest and greatest thing. A few years ago, I never would have dreamed of being an author or having the opportunity to get my book out there, not only in paperback form but digitally as well. I couldn’t have done this though, without help from my friends, family, and fans of the series!

In the last two weeks, The Monstrum Chronicles has grown by leaps and bounds. On December 14th, when I posted the infamous I Need a Christmas Miracle post, I had 108 fans on Facebook. I had 26 Twitter followers. 1 review on Amazon and no likes. ‘Vox was in 672,oooth place on the Kindle best-sellers market. ‘And I had 2 subscribers on the blog.

Since then, here are the stats: On the facebook page, there are 115 fans. I have 70 followers on Twitter. There are 5 reviews for the Kindle version of “Vox” and 2 for the paperback. There are 4 likes for the book (and two for me!) “Vox” is now at 234,194th place on the Kindle best-sellers market. (At one point, it was at 97,000!) I have 5 subscribers (but several other readers) on my blog. I’m absolutely ecstatic! Thank you all so much for everything you’ve done in the last couple of weeks! You truly are some awesome people!

In 2012, I’d like to take it up a notch! (Sorry, Emeril, not trying to take your catch phrase or anything.)

My New Years Resolutions for 2012!

  1. Better management of time: There aren’t enough hours in one day, to be true. So I need to learn how to organize all of my activities better so that I can do more without stressing. (Such as blog before work!)
  2. Money management: In order to really market “Vox” and its upcoming sequel, “Aequitas”, I’m going to need to crack down on the way that I spend money and lay out a budget for buying ads and such.
  3. Read more!: I don’t read enough. In the last couple months, I’ve gotten back into it and would love to get to a point where I can fly through research books while gleaning valuable information from them as well as enjoying genre and literary fiction without taking 6 months to get through a book.
  4. Write more!: It’s true. I say I write in all of my spare time but more often than not, I’m so tired that I just sleep! Or slip into a vegetative state on my couch, while staring out my window. This fits in with my “time management” resolution as well. I hope to write more short stories and upload them to Kindle next year in addition to finally finishing “Aequitas” and uploading that, too!
  5. Exercise program: This is about energy! I collapse when I get home from work every night. In the mornings, I never want to get up. At night, I’m so restless I can’t sleep. My solution? Exercise. It will tire me out before bed, invigorate me in the morning, and keep my muscles from feeling like goo.
  6. Don’t be afraid to try new things!: Yes. I am a homebody. I don’t go out much and yes, I am hesitant when approaching things I’ve never done before. I’d like to try and come out of my shell more this year and do things I’ve never done before! (okay, a bit dramatic, I apologize.)
  7. Try cooking different recipes!: Here’s a secret: I practically cook the same stuff every week. Its easy and it’s usually cheaper. But its also boring. I’d like to do a new recipe once every two weeks, if I can. And definitely try some international dishes. Any endeavors I take in that area, I’ll post here. And if it’s not too much trouble, I’d love to learn how to bake. Oh yes, some of you know how I excel in crumbling cakes, creating “grunge cakes” (the long-lost, black sheep cousin of the cupcake) and burning cookies. I’ll be working on this.
  8. Lastly, I’d like to put away some of my resentments, turn the burner down on my anger, and attempt to leave the past in the past. Everyone holds onto unnecessary bad mojo. It’s time I said “Au revior!” to mine.

And I need to figure out how to tame the wild, demon that I live with; Lemon Jelly.

He may look all cute and fuzzy... but...

He’s actually mellowed out quite a bit over the last year. However, he’s still capable of douchey things. Last night, one happened to be leaping across my laptop, while I was holding a mug of tea and making me spill it on the keyboard. He did the same thing with a cupcake I was holding at the beginning of the month when I was having a particularly bad day.

And my time is up for the morning. To one and all, have a Happy New Years!

~KSilva