Year in Review

Happy Holidays to you! I hope that you have some time lined up to rest, to enjoy life, and to spend time with your loved ones. As I sit here with my morning coffee and a delicious eggnog biscotti baked by my mom, I reflect upon the year and realize how much I need a break. I promise to take my own advice and step back to enjoy the things that matter the most over the holidays.

A lot has happened in my author path over the last year. I took a deep dive into a massive makeover and overhaul of my books, my website, my newsletter…all of it. I now have the rebranded Track Trilogy along with a full ‘author toolbox’ behind it. I love how it all turned out. It reflects my voice, the essence of the books, and the core of what I write. I built a wonderful relationship with a cover design team along the way, and reflected the new look throughout my whole author presence.

With that said, I have realized that my custom designed ‘vintage’ print books also have a place in the world! I attended my first in person event since before lockdown, and was a little shocked but thoroughly excited to find a true audience for these creative projects that I poured my heart and soul into. Heavy Metal Horror has a place, and I’ve started to find it!

The most important thing that came out of this massive makeover, and my first in person event in years, was that found my voice. Actually, that’s not quite right. I had my voice. I just didn’t realize it. It was shining through loud and clear for years as I worked hard on writing and producing my books. All of the time spent on working and reworking covers, my newsletter, my website, and my social media streams came to a place where it all came together. People started giving me feedback, saying how Killers and Demons had such a clear look and feel – they definitely know something comes from it when they see it.

I guess then the biggest thing that came from this year was my awareness and belief in my voice. Thank you to all of you for reading my books, my blog, my posts, and supporting me along the way. Without you, none of this would be possible.

As a direct result of all of this, I had the courage to enter Final Track for an award. It came in as a finalist (Top 5) in the 2022 Kindle Book Awards for Horror/Suspense! It was also a semi-finalist for best cover, and it was included in the Readers Choice. This was a huge boost for my belief in my books. I have now entered books in multiple award contests, and will continue to do so. I didn’t have the confidence to do this before.

After the event, I was pumped up and keen to find other events where my books would be a good fit. I found a holiday market in November that fit the bill. I remember looking at my table after it was set up and realizing that I had more than enough books to fill a booth! This year has also brought author swag with a killer new sign, book bags, and pins!

The biggest highlight of my author year has to be my 80s metal party book launch that welcomed Back Track (the third book in my core series) to the world. It was a true collaboration between artists: an author (me) and a band (Lynx). They killed it! My local supporters had an amazing time, and copies of Back Track found their way into eager hands.

And…it doesn’t end there. I was asked to include a story in a special Halloween anthology from which all proceeds went to the Calgary food bank. It was a huge accomplishment for me to be invited to submit a story. Then, in November, I launched my first self-published novella, Dead End Track. Attached to the track series, this beauty stands perfectly on its own feet, and the entire process of writing and producing it provided massive validation to my entire book production process and how much it has evolved!

Some other great stuff happened as well. I took on a volunteer role as the local regional representative for the Crime Writers of Canada. I was able to facilitate a couple of local events where authors did some live readings and sold some books! It felt really good to see how comfortable I have become doing my own readings, and to support and encourage other authors.

As the year neared the end, I found myself deep into writing mode. Book four the the Track Trilogy is deep in the editing phase, and book five has been written (first draft)! 2023, and I have two more novellas in the works. 2023 will see the the track series continue and become more than a trilogy! On that note, 2022 also saw the birth and a complete revamp of the film script for the first book (Final Track). Who knows what will happen in the new year!

Thank you for tuning in today, and for reading my posts. This has been therapeutic for me, looking back on the year from the perspective of my author life. I do hope that you will do the same – take a look at everything you have done this year and be proud of yourself.

Now, it’s time to tune out and enjoy the holidays! Happy Holidays!

Dusting off an Old Friend

Where has the time gone? I mean, seriously, where?

I don’t know how long it has been since I sat down and enjoyed writing a blog post. I love my blog. And I love each of you for reading it. I apologize for neglecting it, and here I am to breathe new life into it! Thank you for your patience.

Since today is December 1st, I’m feeling festive. I love the Holiday Season. I dug out one of the lovely holiday mugs my dear mother gave me. I like this one. The fancy French look and pasteries is definitely reflective of the things I enjoy. Why not superimpose a photo of my website in the background, because what makes the Holiday Season even better than Holiday Horror?

It has been a busy time, in a good way. There has been a lot of great writing related things going on. October found me delving into the month of Halloween with enthusiasm, as always. There was pumpkin carving, creepy makeup (I pushed my limits this year), handing out of candy (and glow sticks), and horror movie watching.

October also saw the launch of October Blood, an anthology that I was honored to have a story (Candy Lady) in. It was a beautiful project executed by Hawke Haus, and all proceeds went to the Calgary Food Bank.

November was packed full and it was a lot of fun! I was able to get into a fantastic Holiday Market and sell some books! The vibe at the market was incredible. The other vendors were excited and friendly. The patrons were thrilled to be out and shopping for the holidays. I loved interacting with new readers and putting vintage print books into their eager hands. It was quite exciting for me to see how far my collection of books has come and how much my vendor booth has evolved.

November was also NanoWrimo (National Novel Writing Month). I use this month to put my writing at the topmost priority, and I join a community of writers in a super motivating over the top fun boot camp. We gather in the virtual space from all over the world and write together.

The goal is to write 50,000 words, thus finishing the first draft of a novel. I set my goal to finish the entire first draft of another book in the Det. Mahoney series. For me, that means writing closer to 80,000 words. I planned for Nano by prepping aspects of characters, settings, stories, and investigation in October. I also allocated chunks of time in November to allow myself the luxury of writing. I am thrilled to say that I wrote over 100,000 words. The novel came in around 92.000, and I pulled out a horror novella I’d been working on to blast through the 100 K line.

The first time I did Nano, I was struggling to finish my first novel. This year, I had so much fun and am really happy that I stuck to it, worked hard, and have improved my craft and my process.

Now that we are officially into December, I will leave you with a festive treat. I am running the Holiday Gift Guide by Killers and Demons for the entire month of December. It will be posted on my Instagram and FB streams (@killersanddemons). On Day 1, I share one of the most moving books I have ever read. Hope to see you on my socials!

Happy Halloween! Here’s Your Bag of Treats!

Happy Halloween everyone!!

I love the month of October, and especially Halloween night.

What about you? Are you dressing up? Doing some creepy makeup? Handing out candy? Taking the little ones out to fill their bags with treats?

There’s been a lot going on at Killers and Demons during October. It’s all here, right now, just for you!

Go on, treat yourself, fill your own bag with goodies!

Book Launch Wrap Up

The Back Track book launch is winding down to a close.

The 80s Metal Party was EPIC!
Special thank you to Lÿnx and to the Bon Julie VIP Club! 🤘🎸🔥

As part of the online launch, Final Track and Back Track are still on sale for ONE MORE DAY!

You can still get your copy of the NEW release – Back Track!

SIGNED and GLAM WRAPPED (Local) at the Killers and Demons bookstore.

Or online at the special Back Track LINK!

ROCK ON! 🤘🤘🤘

Book Launch Week Day 5

Let’s talk about the star of the show, Back Track.

Back Track is the 3rd book in the 80s Metal Murder series. I can’t believe my first novel turned into a trilogy!

It’s 1989. The moon is full. Rock is Gothic.

The exsanguinated remains of a young girl are found in a park in big-city Toronto. Her eyes are circled with blood-red makeup. Her lips are painted black. She’s a duplicate demon doll from a case gone cold sixteen years ago.

A case that has haunted Det. Mahoney ever since.

Thrust into an investigation festering with ulterior motives, Det. Mahoney must confront the corpse faces of dead girls whispering of his failure to save them.

The moon is waxing toward full. The killer leaves a trail of bloodless bodies tainted with bite marks and animal hair.

Det. Mahoney goes off the rails into his own investigation. Will he catch a human monster before another victim is bled out? Or will the glam night creature descend into hibernation until the next cycle of kills?

Book Launch Week Day 4

Today we will have a DOUBLE treat day! I missed posting this yesterday. This means that I will be posting TWO treats for you today as part of Book Launch Week.

First treat. Check out this killer sale. As part of Book Launch Week, I am running a promo. The promo includes a group of authors. Each author is offering up 1 or 2 of their psychological thrillers ON SALE!

The sale is still on all day today and all day tomorrow. Get your claws in some great nail-biting reads!

Book Launch Week Day 2

It’s book launch week!! If you missed the first blog post for book launch week, no problem. You can still read it here.

To continue celebrating the launch of Book 3 in the 80s Murder Metal series, today I bring you another sale. Oh yes! Acid Track, book 2 in the series, is on sale for only $1.99 this week only.

Acid Track is a fusion of 70s acid rock, The Doors style, and True Detective. Det. Mahoney finds himself spiraling down a dusty LP path to unravel the Lizard King infused fantasy of a serial killer.

Finding Flow in the New Year

Some of us had time off during the festive season. For those of you who didn’t, I hope you can find time and space to rest and recharge. This year, I took a full week between Christmas and New Year’s. I didn’t allow myself to work on anything book or writing related. I love to write. But being an indie author brings many other things that have to be done, other than writing books. I realized that I quite dedicated to my little book business, and thus I don’t tend to take conscious breaks. Especially at a time when travel and adventure has been off the table.

So, I consciously took a full festive week. It was great. I read a lot. I went on nature hikes with my hubby in the winter cold. I cozied by the fire with festive Christmas beer (brewed by my favorite brewery). I had a tonne of fun in the kitchen! I have a passion for learning how to make French pastry. I have a French pastry idol, and have taken his master class, and bought his book. That poor book sat on my shelf, alone. Over holidays, I opened it up and dove right in. I was quite proud of my execution of the homemade jam-jam style cookie, the ever so sweet chocolate chip cookie, and tiramisu. I love how this type of baking requires a slow, focused pace. I love the art of it, and creating something so divine to the sight and the taste buds!

The festive break was also a time to connect with people that I love. And to spend some real quality time with my hubby. It felt good to be completely away from the computer and the office.

Yesterday, Monday, January 3, marked the intended day of my return to the office. It didn’t happen. I was quite run down from my festive and fun week. I recognized that, and I took a full rest day. This morning, I feel quite different. I feel good, relaxed, and in a full state of flow. I have some hefty and exciting goals for this year to realize some visions. I am overly excited about them. I wanted to fling myself right back in. But, if there is one thing I have recognizedd this past year, it’s that I don’t want to be in a state of force. I want to push myself when I know I need it, want it, and it is right. But, when I know my being needs a break, I want to back off. This is something I have not always been good at. Sometimes, I have been terrible at this.

This year, I seek flow.

I will achieve my goals, bringing my visions to reality. I want to do it in a healthy state of creativity, passion, and oneness with my physical, mental and spiritual beings.

This week I will translate my visions for my projects into concrete actions. I have decided to start with the first four months of the year, as I have some big targets for May. Instead of madly jotting down all the things that need to get done, I will start by reflecting on what these visions truly look like to be in a state of success. What success means to you is the most important thing in defining a goal. I will then identify those tasks for each month and week that will take me to my idea of of success for each of those projects. The whole time, I will seek to be in a state of positive energy, passion fueled creativity, and trust in my talent and comittment.

Sound good? Do you want on this train? Stay tuned here. I’ll share my journey, the steps I am taking, and tips along the way.

10 Days of Halloween – Horror Inspired Cocktails

One of the best parts of Halloween is the candy, right? What better pairing for your bowl of sugary treats than a horror inspired, dark and delicious cocktail?

I have come across a few good ones lately, but this one takes the cake. I have added it to the official cocktail menu for the Virtual Halloween Party that will be in full motion tomorrow night to welcome a new book into the world! This cocktail idea was so kindly donated by The Haunted Walk.

Do check out their cool page. And do share your horror inspired cocktails here. There is always room for more on the menu…

SPOOKY Free Books!

It’s Halloween month! That means it’s time to start packing in the Halloween fun. It’s a time for dressing up, putting on makeup, eating candy, watching scary movies, and reading spine chilling books!

Just for you, little demons, a bunch of FREE spine chilling reads.

Happy reading.