Saturday, November 12, 2011

Speaking Engagements for 11-11-11

Yesterday I had the fortunate opportunity to speak to two classes again.

In the morning I first went to Mr. Bryant's 8th grade US History class at the local Junior High. They listened politely as I explained who I was. I told them of Annabelle's story and my journey as a writer. I showed them pictures and even read part of my Salem chapters to them (that's what they had recently studied).
While I read, Mr. Bryant placed their names in my cauldron. I then opened it up for questions. Two kids asked several good questions and after I was done reading I chose a winner for a copy of Dark Threats. The lucky boy asked me to sign it (I'd forgotten beforehand). I finished off by chucking candy at them. All in all it was a good visit.

A few hours later I spoke to Mr. Palfreyman's high school 10th grade English class. I followed a similar pattern but I think I was more relaxed. Maybe it was because my wonderfully energetic wife helped me open up? Maybe it was because most of my daughter's friends were in the class? I don't know but it went really well. Several kids had a lot of questions (one of Katie's friends would ask every time there was a lag in conversation) and my wife Janeen broke it up with the book giveaway and the candy chucking.

I'm grateful to both classes for having me and hope to do it again.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Bite of Story Thursday

Chapter Four

Time seemed to stop. They all looked at Dominic, confused and shocked.

His strong, pale face drew Annabelle’s attention. His eyes seemed to glow red like two burning embers in the night. His mouth opened into a fiendish smile.

“Mr. Pratchet, be careful! The wolves are--”

Roland’s words trailed off as the wolf pack paced towards them. He whispered, “Nice doggies. Can we go home, Father?”

Annabelle knew the wolves were too close. She and her family were trapped. Her breath caught as she peeked through her mother’s arms.

Dominic gestured and the beasts stopped in their tracks. Before she could bury her head again, the man attacked. He lifted Father from the ground as easily as if he were a feather and held him in the air.

Anthony flailed wildly, striking the lantern against Dominic’s head. The fiend latched onto it and flung it to the ground.

Roland surged forward, but Mother pulled him close.

Annabelle fought her mother’s tense grip. “Let me go! We have to help!”

“No!” Mother cried, “There’s nothing we can do!”


For more check out Dark Birth at your local online store. Links to Dark Birth on the web can be found on the Store Page on this blog or you could just go here, Dark Birth on Amazon. Soon to be on paperback!

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Who's Who in the Annabelle Universe? Annabelle Foresight


By Adam Diller

Other names:
Ann, Night Child, bossy sister

Name Origin:
ANNABEL: "Beautiful grace." A compound name consisting of English Ann, "grace," and French Belle, "beautiful." Variants include Anabel, Anabella, Anabelle, Annabal, Annabelinda, Annabell, Annabella and Annabelle.

Physical characteristics:
Short in height. Red bushy hair. Red eyes. Small white fangs. Wears a variety of clothing but likes to wear combinations of red and black.

Age Chart:
She was turned at age 11. Every hundred years she ages one year. She actually experiences her years longer than normal humans. Vampire children remain that age emotionally and mentally, perhaps for self preservation so they do not go insane living as an adult trapped in a child body.
Annabelle, however, is more mature for her age. How she handles immortality remains to be seen.

Advancement Chart:

b. October 13th 1681 d. 1692

born a vampire 1692-
Age 11 1692-1792
Age 12 = 1792-1892
Age 13 = 1892-1992
Age 14 = 1992-Present Day

No other ages available at the moment.

She gets dreams that show the near future (but presently in the books she is unaware of this. When she learned of this ability remains unknown). She has the standard vampire abilities.  This means she’s faster and stronger than humans, her senses are extremely acute as are her reflexes. She can fly and turn into a bat. In later years she has shown the ability to transform into a wolf, rat and mist but how she learn these things has yet to be told.  She can control humans through mesmerization and communicate with lesser beasts.

Known History:

In 1692 Annabelle Foresight moved with her family to the wilds of Massachusetts. The Vampire Lord Dominic Pratchet killed her parents and left her and her brother Roland for dead. Dominic's wife Eliza turned them into vampires, taught them the things they needed to know and became a surrogate mother to them.

As the centuries have passed, Annabelle has become a hero to many, constantly fighting Dominic's forces as a member of the Order of Righteous Vampires. She prefers to drink the blood of animals instead of humans. Annabelle is deeply concerned about the safety of mortal children.

She is determined, loyal to family, feels love for others and angry if someone hurts her family.  Annabelle is outward friendly,book smart, a quick learner and sometimes acts too serious to make up for her reckless older brother. She tends to pretend to be brave and mock the bad guys.

She takes life too seriously and can be bossy. She takes over when she should sit back. She can often make decisions before consulting others. She's afraid deep inside if she doesn’t just make things happen, they will fall apart right away.

Before vampirism she loved animals and winced when they got hurt. After becoming a vampire she now sees them as something to eat. In some ways she has lost touch with who she was. She has a deep fear of two men, Hawke the vampire hunter and Dominic, the vampire who killed her parents.

NOTE: I added a "NAME ORIGIN" to Dominic's entry below.

Sunday, November 06, 2011

Book Review: Insight by Terron James

Oh ho! This book surprised me! Yes, the cover did throw me off. The guy on the cover is so depressed. But are we not told to NOT judge a book by its cover? Well I’m so glad I didn’t. Before I tell you why, I will say here that this cover actually is perfect after you follow Lon’s tough journey. Author Terron James is planning on changing the cover but let me tell you the story inside is good enough no matter what the cover looks like.

Insight is the story of a boy who becomes a man, gaining “insight” as he discovers everything he knew was wrong. It’s a coming of age story set in a realistic world of warring nations, exiled people and years worth of false hatred. Appernysia could easily be any place on Earth, where people were raised up to believe the other people “over there” are bad and we’re good. Lon grew up in a small community where everyone lived the lives they were expected and never stepped out of line or challenged their world.

But what happens if the “bad guys” come to Lon’s sleepy outskirt community ? What happens when Lon discovers that these Rayders seem to be just as human as anyone else?

It doesn’t help that Lon discovers the reason behind his headaches, the amazing untrained abilities he now has and the terrible dangers those abilities bring his loved ones. If unchecked, his new abilities could kill him.

Revelation after revelation completely turn him upside down. He’s forced to leave his loving parents, his hot-headed twin sister, his home and the love of his life. He must go to the one person who can help him, the scholar Omar, deep within the Rayder’s world.

How does his sharp tongued sister Mellai or his love Kaylen feel about this? What do they do and where do they go as a result? How does Lon fit into the harsh military world of the Rayders and how will he become the man he needs to be? Will he master his gifts or will they destroy him? Will he grow into an amazing leader or die by the sword and his pride?

This book is filled with adventure, romance, shocks, humor, realism and fantasy. It even has a monster or two. I identified with Lon and Mellai. They were two of my favorite characters. I also enjoyed Omar and Tarek. There are also plenty of characters you’ll love to hate like Braedr and Commander Rayben Goldhawk.

All in all I really enjoyed this book. I recommend it to anyone. The chapters end in ways that you just have to turn the pages and devourer more. The story starts slow and continues to build until you just can’t stop reading. The final last two chapters alone are so amazing when… wait. Go get a copy and find out for yourself. It’ll be worth it!