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Win a Free e-Copy of Where the Dead Fear to Tread

I love film noir and horror so when I discovered Where the Dead Fear to Tread, a novel that embraces both genres, I bought it. Peter Schwotzer of Literary Mayhem calls it “…a combination old time detective pulp story, a revenge story and a good old fashioned horror story.” I’m reading it now and really enjoying it.

Now the book’s author and publisher are giving away a free e-copy in a contest that runs February 1 – 28. I’ll post the synopsis, then directions on how to win, then a few more reviews of Where the Dead Fear to Tread. Good luck!

A police officer and a serial killer search separately for a missing child while running a malevolent labyrinth populated by creatures they never knew existed.

Former prosecutor William Chandler, disgusted with his past inaction, spills the blood of those who victimize children to correct the ills he sees in the world. A self-admitted serial killer and uncomfortable with his actions, Chandler attends the funerals of those whose lives he has taken in an effort to retain a true understanding of the nature of violence.

The carnage left in his wake is investigated by Detective Kate Broadband, who becomes progressively more comfortable with the corpses left by Chandler. Envying the power she sees in him, she pursues Chandler as each search for Maria Verde, a missing eight-year-old girl.

As Chandler and Broadband draw closer to discovering what happened to Maria they are forced to confront The Devourer, an unnatural being trafficking in stolen children.

To enter you can like on Facebook and send a Facebook message to M.R. with your email address and preferred version (EPUB, HTML, MOBI, PDB and PDF).

Or you can mark as To Read on your Goodreads account and send M.R. a Goodreads message with your email address and preferred version (EPUB, HTML, MOBI, PDB and PDF).

You can enter once through Facebook, and once through Goodreads to increase your odds of winning. The contest will run from February 1 – 28. Your email will not be used for any purpose beyond notification of winning.

“Where the Dead Fear to Tread is an immensely enjoyable read; jam-packed with great action sequences and wonderfully horrific monsters that will chill you to the bone.”
~Dark Rivers Press

“It could be a future movie or video game franchise hit that you can brag about having picked up when it was just a humble indie e-book. Give it a chance and you may be surprised to find out Where the Dead Fear to Tread.”
~Robert Hibbs of Ravenous Monster

“…well-thought out. The main character, like the writing, is a complex man who you’re not sure if you can classify as “good” or “bad”. The story takes him through a supernatural mystery that will
leave you wanting more.”
~Nerds in Babeland


Taking a Year Off to Write

I took a year’s leave from my job to write full time, starting January 3. Since then, I’ve worked on revising The Bad Death to prepare it for beta readers. My goals for the year are:

•Publish The Bad Death
•Launch The Bad Death, following a marketing plan that includes guest blogging, giveaways, and social media contests
•Submit House of the Apparently Dead to beta readers

Supporting goals include shaping my blog according to advice from successful bloggers (and reader input), as well as increasing the reach of my social network. I would really love to publish the 2nd volume of Night at the Demontorium, but that may be more than I can chew.

The “why, how, and what’s-it-like” of taking a creative sabbatical?

Why. I became frustrated with time constraints preventing me from writing more often and writing more volume. In addition to working full time I was writing an hour or two several nights a week and a marathon session on Saturdays, marketing my writing, learning how to market better, working out, keeping house, and doing the occasional community or social event. You know, life. I find it hard always changing focus. I began to feel that the quality of what I wrote suffered from a lack of continuity. I wanted one focus. I wanted to wake up every morning and work on the story. Doing that for a year will help prevent regrets when I’m old and gray(er).

How. I cashed a portion of a retirement plan. This is where Suze Orman takes a moment to bitch slap me into next week. I know, I know. But in addition to having a bigger retirement plan that I left untouched, I had factors in my favor to begin with:

•Debt-free
•No dependents
•Low mortgage
•Good health

Some measures I took to reduce my risk:

•Researched and consulted an accountant
•Saved up an emergency fund
•Saved a separate fund for taxes/penalties on early withdrawal
•Created a budget at the reduced monthly “salary” and tested its feasibility
•Added a Critical Illness policy to my insurance, to the fullest payout in case disaster strikes
•Took a year’s leave of absence from work; I didn’t quit!

What’s-it-Like? From a practical standpoint, I treat it like a day job. I wake with the alarm and get ready for work Monday – Friday. The only steps I leave out are dressing in office clothes and leaving home. I’m at my computer no later than 9. I quit 8 hours later. I get up frequently but I find little breaks refresh me. I don’t leave home, though! After work, I usually go to the gym. Then I come home and do some book-related social networking and marketing. On the weekends, I run errands but mostly I lie on the couch and read. Both fiction and nonfiction books are brain food. The budget is holding up, though I will tell you with 8 more days in the month that it’s getting a little tight. What’s it feel like? Wonderful! Throughout school, the ongoing refrain of my teachers was, “Pay attention! Stop daydreaming!” Sometimes it just blows my mind that for the next year, daydreaming is my job.

Am I crazy? I ‘ll letcha know later how things turn out. For now, reference above statement about regrets in old age. One regret is dying broke under a bridge. I believe with self-discipline and sacrifice I can rebound and prevent it. Dying creatively unfulfilled? I could go to Hell for that.

Have you ever thought of doing something like this? I’d love to hear from you in a comment!