Sunday Smatterings

Sunday Smatterings 7.23.17

Hey, y'all! How's tricks? The Ellison house is trying to stay cool during the heat wave, and thankfully that's more possible now that our air-conditioner is fixed...er...completely replaced. Yes, our 30-year-old unit took one look at the heatwave and said, no, nope, no way and quit. Oh, the joys of Tennessee summertime... 

Got a bit of writing done on the new Brit in the FBI book, though not as much as I wanted. But like I said, hitting a rough patch at this stage of the book, a quarter of the way through, is normal for me. Sometimes you just have to buckle down and write through it anyway. It's not fun, by any stretch, but as a professional, sitting down and doing the work is something I have to do. The end result will be worth it, and I think you're all going to love this book. Plus I get to go on vacation soon, a proper one, something I haven't done in a couple of years. That's a nice light at the end of the tunnel.

Anyway. It's been a while since we've had a Sunday Smatterings, so without further ado...


Here's what happened on the Internets this week:

BLAME, the stunning new thriller from Jeff Abbott. Y'all, do yourselves a favor and pick up a copy of my buddy Jeff Abbott's latest novel, BLAME. It's a five-star read!

10 Writing Rules You Can (and Should) Break. Amen. What makes your writing yours is how you break the rules.

Revered and Feared in the Book Review. "A good murder novel, she once wrote, can be 'a portal to a wider world.' Here she is literally at home among them, windows into alternate realities as familiar and vital to her as they can be strange and sinister to others."

Should You Make Your Book Available for Pre-Order? I, along with 13 other authors, weigh in.

The Handmaid's Tale: How to Soundtrack a TV Show Set in Silence. If you haven't seen the TV adaptation of Margaret Atwood's THE HANDMAID'S TALE, trust me when I say the soundtrack of the show is sheer brilliance. I enjoyed this peek into the creative minds behind it.

Emma Watson Interviews Margaret Atwood on "The Handmaid's Tale." Speaking of tapping creative minds, Hermione Granger interviewed the author herself. The meeting of these two smart, savvy women is so enjoyable!

The Golden Age of Bailing. "Technology makes it all so easy. You just pull out your phone and bailing on a rendezvous is as easy as canceling an Uber driver.... But we should probably make bailing harder."


And closer to home:

This week, not only did we receive a wonderful starred PW review (!), I announced dates and locations for the LIE TO ME tour! I'm heading to some new places on tour this time. Am I going to be near you? If not, never fear: I have a LiveSigning planned on September 21! What's a LiveSigning, you ask? It'll be a live streaming video where I'll sign books on camera, talk about LIE TO ME, and answer your burning questions—just like a regular bookstore signing. And guess what? You can get yourself an autographed book and submit a question before the livecast! Want to learn more? Details here.

New J.T. story: THE ENDARKENING. Have you read my latest short story? It's the perfect ebook read for a plane ride or a day at the beach. Especially if you're into sexy Scottish Highlanders...

JUDAS KISS is only $0.99 until tomorrow! If you've never read Taylor's 3rd book, now's your chance to get the ebook for a bargain.


That's it from me! Y'all enjoy a lazy summer day or two, binge-watch something good, be safe in the heat, and we'll talk again soon.

xo,
J.T.

Daily Tao ☯ 6.29.17 - Gone Fishin'

Remember the old signs you used to see on the doors of your favorite local establishments when they closed shop for a break? Well, Amy and I are hanging up our Gone Fishin’ sign, and will be incommunicado from July 1 - July 17. Amy is taking a well-deserved vacation, and I decided to shut down too, partially so she wasn’t worrying about the boss mucking things up whilst she was away (trust me when I say our machine is well-oiled, and I can break it) and partially because I’ve been on the road so much lately that I need to catch up on writing and rest. I’ve finally kicked the lingering bronchitis crud, and the renovations are done for a while, and there’s no travel until we head to the RITA Awards ceremony at the end of the month. Still, I’m feeling behind on things, so this is perfect timing. 

But I didn’t want to leave you high and dry, so don’t be surprised to see the tweets and Facebooks still rolling (I LOVE being able to schedule in advance for moments like this) and of course, a quick reminder of our news from yesterday, if you missed it—there is a brand new short story never before published available on all e-reading platforms (now including Google Play!).

THE ENDARKENING is part romance, part horror, and utterly surreal, all with a Scottish backdrop. I hope you love it, because it was a blast to write. If you love it too, please don’t hesitate to leave a review. If you hate it, send me a note, instead. (LOL) I just thought we needed a little Halloween in July...

Here's where you can get it:

So with that, I bid you adieu for a couple of weeks! Have a fantastic celebration of our independence on the 4th of July, wave your sparklers high in the air, and we’ll see you in a couple of weeks!

 

New Story THE ENDARKENING On Sale Now!

A couple of weeks ago, I asked if people would freak out if I wrote a dark romantic horror story. I was very heartened by the response (especially because I already had the story finished and it’s been sitting on my computer, waiting to go to a good home, for months.) So here’s a treat for you — a brand new story called THE ENDARKENING!
 

Art is her refuge, her passion—and her hell.

American art student Evie Williams is studying abroad in Edinburgh and having the time of her life—especially when she falls hard for Thomas MacBean, a sexy art dealer with a Highlander's brogue. But as Thomas and Evie’s romance heats up, so does Evie’s fascination with a special exhibit of dark art at a local gallery. Normally frightened by sinister subjects, sensitive Evie finds herself entranced by one painting in particular, and soon, can’t pull herself away. 
 
Who, or what, has she really encountered?

 

The story was inspired by a show I saw on the BBC in which brilliant Scottish crime fiction author Ian Rankin was interviewed whilst attending an exhibit at the Dovecot in Edinburgh. The installation was called THE SCOTTISH ENDARKENMENT: Age and Unreason from 1945 to the Present, and featured very dark art indeed. One of the paintings looked like a Rothko, but I couldn’t identify it, so I reached out to Ian, who sent me to the Dovecot, and they helped me find the painting, which was actually by William Turnbull.

As I watched the super cool video the Dovecot had put together to show off the installation, seeing painting after painting, a completely surreal idea surfaced. What if there was a painting that was actually a serial killer?

I outlined the story at that moment, and wrote it soon after, quite quickly, in big swaths of time. It simply poured out of me, and when you read it, I think you’ll understand why that was at once exciting and horrifying. 

Writing is always a gift, but sometimes it has a bit too much of The Red Shoes in it, don’t you think? 👠👠

I hope you enjoy this dark little tale! Available in ebook at all e-retailers!