The blog tour is over for Prince of Tricks, but you have until midnight EST tonight to enter to win a $10 Amazon or Barnes & Noble gift card or a mouthwatering Russian-inspired grand prize: a Caviar Gift Basket (or gift-card equivalent in the amount of $150) from House of Caviar!Read More
This is the first blog post in my new Squarespace blog. I'm slowly moving over all of my past blog posts from the old WordPress blog. Luckily, I haven't blogged that often. ;)
What do you think of the new site?
On January 4, I resolved to do a number of things this year, most of them involving something I would accomplish weekly. So it's been ten days. What have I done so far? Last blog post was 8 days ago, but I did two posts that week, and 8 is only one more than 7, so I'm giving myself a check mark here.Read More
Everyone is all about saying “I don’t make resolutions,” and “I don’t believe in resolutions” these days. Personally, I think that’s a copout. It says, “I can’t accomplish one single thing this year,” and ascribes to some kind of negative magical thinking that if you write it down, you’ll fail. Whatever. (Not trying to be mean to those of you who’ve said it. I’m trying to light a fire under my own derriere.) I haven’t been making resolutions for the past several years, using this same excuse. This year, I’m changing my tune.
First, I’m resolving to blog at least once a week, and to that end, this.
Second, I’m resolving to read at least one book a week. That’s right; I have not been reading even a book a week. I know many writers somehow read books in the triple digits annually. I am in awe of you. (I do wonder if you remember a word of any of them, but I admire your ability to devour literature just the same. And I don’t mean that snarkily. Be quiet, spellcheck. That is too a word.) I, on the other hand, have not even been reading one book a month since I started working on The House of Arkhangel’sk. So yesterday, I read a book: The Restorer, part of the Graveyard Queen series by Amanda Stevens. (I don’t do book reviews, but it was an enjoyable read, and I gave it 4 stars on Goodreads and B&N.)
Third, I’m going to finish three novels this year. This one is a bit of a cheat, because I’m closing in on the end of my Nano book, Prince of Tricks, and I’m planning yet another revision to Anamnesis (aka The Neverending Story), but I will write at least one novel from start to finish, and probably a novella somewhere in the mix. Again, this probably sounds silly to writers who crank out four or five books in a year, but unless you want to see 300 pages of “All work and no play makes Jane a dull girl,” this is all you’re going to get from me. Yesterday, I managed to get in my standard 1,000 words for the day on Prince of Tricks after being sidetracked by edits on The Armies of Heaven for a couple of weeks, so that’s three resolutions whose face I’m all up in already. (In whose face I’m all up…up in whose face…oh, forget it.)
Fourth, I’ve been telling myself for years “I’m going to learn to knit this year”…but I never made it a resolution, and thus let myself off the hook before I’d even begun. (That was a little knitting joke, there. Sort of. Well, a crocheting joke, anyway. Okay, more of a fishing joke, really, but I don’t have any interest in learning to fish.) And to that end, I’ve just purchased my first set of knitting needles and some pretty aubergine yarn, and have picked out a pattern for a scarf. Boom. I have pwned you, Resolution #4. (Which is not to say that I may not crumble under the weight of my January bravado as soon as the needles arrive, but I mean to give this a real go.)
And finally (aka Number Five), I resolve to cook at least one meal a week—in a real oven—that does not come out of a box, a can, or a freezer. I’ve, uh…made and eaten an entire batch of cookies this week; does that count? (No. No, it does not. And I can’t believe I just admitted that publicly. It was a small batch. ~shifty eyes~)
And why did I not just use ordered list tags to number these? Because this blog template refuses to show the numbers. Perhaps Number Six should be "get a better blog template or hire a pro to design a new site."
And as a bonus, I shall throw at you a random half-naked man. You're welcome. (And yes, I purchased this image. He's a potential Belphagor.)
Are you a resolver or a rebel in the great Resolution Revolution?
Welcome to my giveaway for the Mistletoe Madness Blog Hop! In addition to chances to win at over 50 blogs in the hop, the Grand Prize from the core author sponsors is a brand new Kindle Fire along with ebooks from 14 authors!
If you're familiar with my House of Arkhangel'sk series, you know that it's set in modern-day St. Petersburg, Russia, as well as in a celestial city called Elysium patterned after Imperial St. Petersburg. And if you're a Twitter follower or Facebook fan, you also know that I'm totally obsessed with all things Russian.
So it should come as no surprise that my giveaway for this blog hop is Russian-themed as well: along with signed copies of the first two books in my Arkhangel'sk series and a signed Fallen Queen cover flat, I'm giving away a gift sampler of Kusmi Russian Blend teas (includes my favorite, Prince Vladimir, as well as their Earl Grey blend, Anastasia, and their Troika, St.Petersburg, and Bouquet of Flowers teas). (This giveaway is international.)
You can skip to the bottom now to enter via the Rafflecopter, or read on to learn a little about holiday traditions in Russia.
While Orthodox Christians in Russia celebrate Christmas, it isn't the big to-do it's become in the US and Western Europe. Instead, Russians have a large celebration on the New Year—Novy God—with a decorated yolka (fir tree), and instead of Santa, a similar figure named Ded Moroz (Grandfather Frost) delivers presents with his assistant Snegurochka, the Snow Maiden. This secular holiday became more popular during the Soviet era, but has been a Russian tradition since the time of Peter the Great.
And as a bonus holiday treat, here's an awesome Russian cartoon about a tech-savvy Ded Moroz and a plane-flying Snegurochka:
And if you haven't entered the other hops yet, hop to it!
Welcome to my giveaway for the Entangled Under the Mistletoe Blog Hop!
The pagan origins of many of the rituals around this time of year have always been my favorite: kisses under the mistletoe, decorated trees, and pretty lights at the darkest time of the year. (At least for us Northern Hemisphere folks!) The season, to me, is about ancient magic and the wheel of the year, no matter what religion—or none—one happens to follow.
That same magic is encapsulated in the tarot, and the Russian Tarot of St. Petersburg, in particular, adds to that magic with beautiful paintings depicting the Fool's Journey, which echoes the wheel of the year itself: beginnings and endings all wrapped up in an ever-returning cycle.
To kick off the season, I'm giving away signed copies of Books One and Two of The House of Arkhangel'sk: The Fallen Queen and The Midnight Court, along with a gorgeous Russian Tarot of St. Petersburg deck and an accompanying book that discusses the Russian-specific meanings of the cards.
Arkhangel'sk Trivia Note: Several scenes in Book Three, The Armies of Heaven, due out in May 2013, were actually written with the help of the Russian Tarot of St. Petersburg.
Enter via the Rafflecopter below. And don't forget to check out the rest of the blogs on the hop!
Well, it's my blog, so demons it is! LOL. No, truly, I like angels, fallen or otherwise, I just have a rather soft spot for two demons in particular. ;) But since my demons and angels are actually just the peasants and nobility of a single race, it's all one and the same. As for the blog hop, the Grand Prize winners are Stephanie Huff (#1291 from I Smell Sheep), winner of the Kindle Touch, and Drake (#4695 from Dani Harper’s Blog), winner of the Amazon $60 Gift Card!
And the winner of my giveaway of a signed copy of The Fallen Queen and cover flat is Kassandra! Kassandra, you should be getting an email shortly to request your mailing address for your prize. Email me at jane at janekindred dot com if you don’t receive it.
Congrats to the winners and thanks to everyone who participated in the hop, and for all of the great comments!
And as a consolation prize for those of you who didn't win, here's a bonus pic of my favorite demon (pre-tattoos):
If you've come here via the Angels vs. Demons Blog Hop, welcome! If you just stumbled in here by accident, read on.
Authors Leia Shaw and Carrie Ann Ryan are hosting the blog hop in celebration of their new paranormal romance releases, Destiny Bewitched and Dust of My Wings, and they want to know which you'd rather have to...uh...cuddle up with at night—angels or demons? And what are your favorite angel or demon books?
At the end of this post is a table full of blog links. Every single one of those authors and bloggers is offering their own giveaway, in addition to the blog hop grand prizes: one lucky entrant will win a Kindle Touch and one will win a $60 Barnes & Noble Gift Card! All you have to do to enter is comment on any post in the hop...which means you can enter 103 times. Comments on this post will also enter you in a drawing for a signed copy of my novel, The Fallen Queen, and an autographed cover flat.
This is a long post, so I don't blame you if you want to skip to the contest entry—just scroll to the end (but you're going to miss some man candy!). ;) Just be sure to leave your email address or we won't have any way of contacting you.
The heroes of my House of Arkhangel'sk series, Belphagor and Vasily, aren't your typical demons. But rather than make this post even longer, I'll let you learn all about them on my virtual book tour: Belphagor | Vasily. Separately from this blog hop, I'm also giving away ebook copies of The Fallen Queen at both of those links. (Note that entering the giveaways on those two blogs will NOT enter you in any of the blog hop drawings.)
But if you want the quick down-and-dirty on my wily demons, here are their stats:
BELPHAGOR An airspirit demon of Raqia in the Third Heaven
Build: Wiry but muscular
Eye color: Ebony
Hair: Dark, short, spiked on top
Body art: Numerous Russian prison tats, including on hands and fingers; pierced eyebrow; pierced nipples
Strengths: Fiercely loyal; able to manipulate the element of air, including influencing the mind; as a BDSM top, he makes people feel cherished and protected with an almost paternal sensibility
Weaknesses: Has difficulty trusting others and keeps things to himself to his own detriment, resulting in getting himself into trouble he might otherwise have avoided
Favorites: The game of wingcasting (a kind of celestial poker); cigars; spanking naughty “boys”; a good Russian tea
Occupation: Gambler and thief
Nickname: Prince of Tricks
Quote: “I can't imagine why you think I'd have sex with a girl.”
VASILY A firespirit demon of Raqia in the Third Heaven
Build: Built like a Cossack warrior
Eyes: Hazel, with a tendency towards flaming red with Seraphic fire
Hair: Dreadlocks, lava red, tied back at the crown to expose his neck, with long, scruffy “mutton chop” sideburns
Body art: A row of spiked barbell piercings down both sides of his neck
Strengths: Can light a cigar with his tongue, illuminate the darkness and stoke a fire with his breath, generate healing Seraphic fire, and keep you very warm throughout an Arkhangel’sk winter
Weaknesses: Volatile temper, insecurity/jealousy
Favorites: Vodka, spankings
Quote: “You touch Bel’s marks and I will kill you with my teeth.”
Want to meet my sexy demon duo? Check out my debut novel, The Fallen Queen, Book One in The House of Arkhangel'sk, published in December 2011 by Entangled Publishing and just re-released in mass-market trade paperback with a new, gorgeous cover:
Heaven can go to hell.
Until her cousin slaughtered the supernal family, Anazakia’s father ruled the Heavens, governing noble Host and Fallen peasants alike. Now Anazakia is the last grand duchess of the House of Arkhangel’sk, and all she wants is to stay alive.
Hunted by Seraph assassins, Anazakia flees Heaven with two Fallen thieves—fire demon Vasily and air demon Belphagor, each with their own nefarious agenda—who hide her in the world of Man. The line between vice and virtue soon blurs, and when Belphagor is imprisoned, the unexpected passion of Vasily warms her through the Russian winter.
Heaven seems a distant dream, but when Anazakia learns the truth behind the celestial coup, she will have to return to fight for the throne—even if it means saving the man who murdered everyone she loved.
The Fallen Queen is available now at Amazon | on Kindle | Barnes & Noble Nook | Books On Board. Pre-order your copy of Book Two in The House of Arkhangel’sk trilogy, The Midnight Court(Amazon | Barnes & Noble), coming in August 2012.
Today I'm over at Elise Rome's site as part of her March Madness Blog Party. There are prizes galore, so check out the March Madness rules first, then hop over to my author interview and answer the reader question for a chance to win an ebook copy of The Fallen Queen. There's also an extra treat for those who haven't read the book yet, of an Anazakia/Vasily excerpt for your reading pleasure. And here' a little snaphot of Anazakia and Vasily to go along with it:
Today I'm blogging at Layers of Thought about creating angels. Stop by for a chance to win an ebook of The Fallen Queen.
Note: I found this interpretation of a seraph online. Mine are a bit less...benevolent. ;)
Today is the Grand Duchess Anazakia Helisonovna Arkhangel'skova's birthday. I'm not saying how old she is, because angels age differently and that's her business. But if The Fallen Queen were made into a movie, here's who I'd pick to play her:
In honor of Anazakia's birthday, check out my interview today on Supernatural Snark.
And get a present for yourself while you're at it:
Enter to win an ebook of The Fallen Queen at The Qwillery (contest ends tomorrow!)
Enter my giveaway along with dozens of others in the Mistletoe Blog Hop (grand prize is a Color Nook!)
Enter the December Will Be Magic Again giveaway at Here Be Magic (grand prize is a Kindle Fire!)
Yet another fabulous giveaway is under way, this time over at the Here Be Magic blog. Head over to HBM for a chance to win three separate prizes: a Kindle Fire, a book basket of 26 ebooks from Carina fantasy and paranormal authors (including The Devil's Garden), and a $25 gift certificate to Amazon or Barnes and Noble.
The giveaway is open until December 24, and with the exception of the Kindle Fire, is open to international entries.
I spent the evening hanging a ridiculous number of lights in my flat—including in the kitchen, the hallway, the bathroom, and a spiral of blue lights down the banister of the building's front stairs, with blue sparkling lights entwined in the iron security gate—while playing How the Grinch Stole Christmas on the DVD player. I'm a sucker for the season. So when I heard about the Mistletoe Madness Blog Hop, I couldn't resist. I especially love buying and wrapping presents.
Enter here for a chance to win the grand prize: a Nook Color loaded with ebooks from 33 authors, including a copy of my debut novel, The Fallen Queen.
My own giveaway includes a signed cover flat of The Fallen Queen, along with two of my favorite Russian things: a DVD of Russian Ark, and the Russian Tarot of St. Petersburg (with companion book). Giveaway is open to international entrants.
What's the best present you've ever received? Tell me in the comments to enter, and be sure to stop by each of the blogs below for chances to win more fabulous prizes. Contest and blog hop ends December 23.
Today I'm guest blogging at TalktoYoUniverse about how my little book about an angel turned into an obsession with all things Russian. In addition, there are still several chances to win a copy of The Fallen Queen:
and a $25 gift certificate at Amazon or Barnes & Noble:
Here Be Magic (giveaway ends tonight at midnight, PST)
Today I'm interviewing Belphagor on Urban Girl Reader. Come see why I torture him. And don't forget, there are still several chances to win a copy of The Fallen Queen:
and a $25 gift certificate at Amazon or Barnes & Noble:
Here Be Magic (giveaway ends December 15)