Talking about all those lovely things.

One drizzly November morning, I sat down to a Skype conversation with the lovely Hannah Kate. Now, Hannah wears many hats, and one of those hats is as a presenter for North Manchester FM. She and I have shared email correspondence for years, as (under another hat) her small press Hic Dragones published my novel The Tattooed Wolf, but we have never actually spoken – words, sounds, jokes, stories, tangents, all those lovely things.

The interview was scheduled to take two hours. We didn’t even start recording for the first hour — we just chatted as if we’d known each other forever, trading tales of fireworks and Guy Fawkes and strange neighbours, and suddenly realized that time was passing quickly, and we were having so much fun that we hadn’t even noticed.

So Hannah started recording, and the conversation shifted to books, werewolves, landscapes, nature, murder, and my choice of reading for the Apocalypse. Good times! The interview was broadcast this morning on North Manchester FM, and I haven’t listened to it yet, but if you’re here because you heard us talking… Welcome!

Conversely, if you haven’t heard the interview yet, then you (and I) will be able to find it at the North Manchester Listen-Again site.

We continued to chat after we’d recorded the two-hour interview, and I’m sure we’ll have more conversations in future. I think it’s a magical thing, when two people race straight past the awkward small-talk to have a real, funny, inspiring conversation, and while we’ve known each other for years and years, I’m really happy we finally met!

 

 

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Books & German & Highland Grogg & Boats

The First Tidbit:

If you’re from the UK and you’re looking to stock up on werewolf books for your summer reading, I advise you to hustle hustle quickly now to Hic Dragones, where they are giving FREE UK shipping for all of their books, including my novel ‘The Tattooed Wolf‘.  A reader once referred to ‘The Tattooed Wolf’ as (and I quote) “a fantastic gateway novel for people who are positively sure they don’t like werewolf-vampire-zombie books, but then discover to their surprise that they do”. I’m assuming that’s a good thing? I don’t know. But someone else said it was ‘perfect summer reading’, so that’s a little clearer.

The Second Tidbit:

I’ve decided to learn German, which is going really well, if all I need to do is tell people that I’m eating bread and that man is drinking water. I know I shouldn’t be so impatient, but I wish language programs would use phrases that have a bit more substance. I mean, if I need to tell the taxi driver to race to the hospital as fast as possible, or explain to a doctor that my abdomen is experiencing stabbing pains, I’m right out of luck. But at least I’ll be able to assure the confused bystanders as I perish on the sidewalk in agony that the boys are all children and this is my favourite hat.

The Third Tidbit:

Remember how I reviewed one of Kienna Coffee’s blends a few weeks ago? Well, I picked up a box of their Highland Grogg blend because honestly, it was pink and covered in Scottish icons, and Oh! My! This coffee tastes like the torrid love affair between a blue-painted Pictish warrior and a drunken pirate captain, their sweaty bodies slammed up against the wall in the alley beside a pub at the docks. I mean, it’s really good! But STRONG! It fears nothing!

Kienna Coffee comes in these little tea-bag-ish pods, but I’ve been ripping them open and pouring the contents directly into my French Press, and it makes a cup of delicious joe that’s so fierce, you can bloody well feel the hair bursting out of your chest follicles. I’ve actually started cutting the coffee grounds with Kicking Horse coffee because it lends a little respite from the punch to the jaw that straight-up Highland Grogg delivers.

I’m sorry, I really suck at this reviewing gig. I don’t think you’re supposed to review your own blends of coffees, but I am.  Two parts Highland Grogg to one part Kicking Horse creates a smooth, delicious, rum-soaked beverage that is both soothing and invigorating. Four beans for this one, my friends, four sweet sweet beans. I can only imagine how transcendent a cup of 100% Grogg with a splash of real rum would be.

four_bean

 

To the good folks at Kienna, I say, “‘s math a rinn thu!”*

The Last Tidbit:

Whenever I visited a Mountain Equipment Co-Op, I used to feel uncomfortable. I felt like the athletic climbers and lanky cyclists were judging my pudgy butt, and I was unworthy of shopping in such an ACTIVE store. Like their eyes were saying, “Get thee back to thy couch, you tub of slug lard!”** But last weekend, I suddenly found my sport… I’ve found my tribe. Break out the water-proof bags and neoprene gloves and aerodynamically shaped paddles, my friends, for I am a kayaker!  I love exploring the ocean and rivers, and I can’t wait for summer to arrive. I live on a island pockmarked with lakes, and I plan to paddle every single last one of them.

On that note, I’m leaving you with an image of last night’s adventure.  Einfach wunderbar!

kayak

*Which, I hope, is actually Scots Gaelic for ‘well done!’ and not just a finger spasm on the keyboard.

**Not that anyone has ever said this to me, they’ve been nothing but pleasant to me. ACTIVELY pleasant. ATHLETICALLY pleasant.

Werewolf Bathtub

Way back in 2004, I did an interview with the Dragon Page Radio Talk Show to promote my novel ‘The Tattooed Wolf’, which had just been released as an ebook. Because it’s Lycanthrovember over at Hic Dragones, I figured I’d look up the interview with Evo Terra & Mike Mennenga and share it with you, but sadly, the page only had a written synopsis of the interview I did (along with Alan Dean Foster ohmygod!!!! *)

I wish I could share the actual interview with you, for which the Dragon Page hosts bestowed upon me the title of ‘Coolest Interviewee Ever‘. Why, you may ask? Because it was a phone interview, and as such, I could do it naked, in a bubble bath, with a glass of rum in hand. ROCK STAR.

Earlier this year, I hunted down Evo Terra to ask him some questions, and I hadn’t corresponded with him in a decade.  When I mentioned my name, he said ‘Oh! The bathtub girl!’, and never was I more proud and pleased to have been so unprincipled in my youth.  Lesson of the Day: if a task can be performed in a bathtub, then do so there. A bubble bath makes everything memorable.

Is this your illustration? I love it but can't find anyone to credit. If it's yours, please let me know!

Is this your illustration? I love it but can’t find anyone to credit. If it’s yours, please let me know!

*Yeah, I’m totally name dropping now.  I hang my head in shame.

HEADS UP! CONTEST!

If you gaze over yonder to the righthand column, you’ll see an intrusive, garish crimson button that promises you the fluttering scintillations of a contest, which I invite you to enter, because only those who enter have the opportunity to win three… yes, that’s right, THREE… intriguing works of fiction from Hic Dragones, along with a sweet-n-stylin’ bag in which to carry them!  Trust me when I say, these books and matching bag are highly portable. You could carry them anywhere, including (but not limited to):

  • The beach
  • The bus stop
  • Family get-togethers
  • Your cousin’s wedding
  • The dentist’s office
  • Or anywhere else where you require a book to pass the time.

As for the quality of literature within those lovely covers… well! The slam-dunk combo of ‘The Tattooed Wolf’, ‘Blood and Water’, and ‘Wolf-Girls’ will provide everything you need to delight your heart and titilate your soul through the hot, sultry summer months. Werewolves – check! Girl werewolves – check! Shape-shifters aplenty – check! The books are, quite frankly, AWESOME, and I am in no way biased in my opinion.

So go ahead, click the big red button, or click THESE WORDS RIGHT HERE, and enter the contest for the chance to be a winner*. Take that first step. Aim for that rabbit. Don’t let the big disembodied balding baby head behind you distract you. Carpe diem, my friend!

Image

 

*Go on, give yourself a hug, you’re already a winner to me. 🙂

It’s Time to Elevate the Arts!

Every year, the Comox Valley hosts an awesome event called Elevate the Arts, where thousands of people get together to be creative in a myriad of different ways. Painting, drawing, dancing, circus arts, puppetry, storytelling, film making, watching and doing inspirational things. The streets and alleys fill with music and laughter. The buildings tremble with the roar of thrilled crowds. Really, it makes for one amazing Saturday.

If you’re coming the Elevate, drop by the Underground Craft Market and say hullo! I’ll be reading onstage at 10:45 am and 2:00 pm, but I’ll be there all day signing and selling books.  Come and chat about transformational mythology, or werewolves, or history, or Victorian medical procedures, or whatever strikes your fancy.  You know me – I’ll gab about pretty much anything.

For more information about Elevate, visit their website and check out the schedule of events.  And before you come visit, take a peek at this, which is brand new and only appeared yesterday and hints at what I’ll be reading this year…. awooooooo!

Library Visit!

Hey y’all!

I’ll be reading from “The Tattooed Wolf” at the Vancouver Island Regional Library – Cumberland Branch on Wednesday, May 28th, starting at 6:30 pm. This free event is open to everyone, so come and listen to some werewolf tails!  (I’ll have copies of the books for sale, too, in case you wish to take your own werewolf home.)

More info here.

 Wolfgrrrl