Hairbanger’s Ball – Winners and Losers

My weekend was made of WIN. Allow me to deconstruct a few tweets I made over the weekend:

I’ve been talked into attending the Hairbanger’s Ball. My ghetto pass is about to be revoked.
-I like to think of myself as a cultural ambassador, out to sample the best that various cultures have to offer. It was in this spirit that I let my wife once talk me into going to Supercross. So when some friends heard that there was a show of 80s hair band music, they determined that this was a must do event.

I’ve spent over a decade trying to repress my memories of 80s music. All undone.
-As an interesting aside, we ended up reminiscing about how when we were all in Youth Group, these were the bands and songs that were railed against. More than one of us ended up burning or trashing our cassette/record collection (dear young people, we once listened to music on these things called cassettes …) and was left with nothing to listen to besides Stryper, DC Talk, and Stephen Wiley (please tell me I wasn’t the only recipient of the classic tape, “Rapping for Jesus”).
-On the plus side of those Youth Group vs. music seminars, I would have never known what they lyrics to “She Bop” meant until they explained them to me.

I would have so rocked a mullet.
-Um, apparently not.

The part of my brain the holds all of the lyrics to Talk Dirty to Me stored I’m sure would have cured cancer.
-I can no longer in good conscience mock my wife’s love of 80s hairband music when apparently I know all of the lyrics to the entire set.
-I will take issue with their definition of hairband though. I never considered Metallica a hair band. Metallica rocked, I don’t care who you are.

Two things I’ve never forgiven pop music for: “Total Eclipse of the Heart” and Spandau Ballet.
-I will once again point out that I often write about politics, race, and religion. Apparently nothing will generate nearly as vehement a response as pointing out that Spandau Ballet sucked. In fact, to quote my buddy Robert N. Lee “True” may actually be the most meaningless pop song ever in history. And that’s a strong statement, I realize – I mean, it’s up against everything by Duran Duran.”

A guy dressed as Richard Simmons just groped me.
-I soooooo regret not getting a picture of him. There was a love connection.

Losers: Amazon vs Macmillan aka AmazonFail

Granted, this probably ripped through my Twitter and Facebook so hard because it impacted writers so much. We were the ones (as well as readers) caught up as collateral casualties in this pissing match between industry titans. Jay Lake, Scott Westerfeld and John Scalzi pretty much sum things up for those interested.

Speaking of winners and losers, here are the winners of our Drood drawing (as chosen by my twenty sided die which have seen too little action of late):
-Sandra K321
-Anita Yancey

Congrats to all the winners. Drop me an e-mail if you haven’t been contacted already so that I can get your addresses.


I recognize that you don’t love* me for me. We live in a “what have you done for me lately” world and I don’t blame you. So once again, I offer you free stuff.**

Dan Simmons has a new book coming out, Black Hills. That’s not what I’m offering. However, Drood is also coming out in paperback in February and in celebration of it, I’ve been tasked with giving away a few copies. First, a bit about Drood, which horror maestro Brian Keene listed at the top of his top ten books of 2009 list (in fact, allow me to quote/snag from Brian Keene’s blog):

Although those of us who’ve yearned for a good doorstop-sized novel have reason to rejoice this year, Drood might seem intimidating to a generation of readers weaned on quick, flash entertainment–at least at first glance. Put your fears aside. Drood is a thoroughly engrossing read that, despite its size, is over far too quickly. Narrated by Wilkie Collins, Drood is the story behind the story of Charles Dickens’ unfinished novel, The Mystery of Edwin Drood. In the aftermath of a grisly train crash, Dickens encounters a seemingly supernatural being that will soon alter his life drastically. Dickens’ obsession becomes Collins’ obsession as well, and their individual quests for the truth take the reader on a twisting ride, that will leave you guessing. Is he Jack the Ripper? Dracula, perhaps? A resurrected Egyptian pharaoh? A figment of the imagination? Something else? The prose is rich and textured, as are the settings and characterizations. Simmons does a remarkable job of capturing the era in which it takes place. This slow build drips with atmosphere, and the tension rises with each subsequent chapter. A masterful, mature work by a masterful, mature writer. I didn’t think Simmons could ever top The Terror, but he has. Read this!

I have five copies at my disposal. You should know the drill: give a shout out in the comments section of my blog and you’re entered. I’ll be accepting entries till the end of the month. I’ll draw five names out of a hat and your books will be shipped directly to you. U.S. residents only and no PO Boxes.

*Okay, “love” is a VERY strong word for what might better be described as “tolerate me enough to read me”.

**Because while splashing about in my fount of insecurities, I’m not above bribery.

Winners and Losers

I was trying to explain to my wife why I was sitting at my table with my ten sided dice that I wasn’t rolling imaginary D&D; characters (which REALLY would have been the sign of a problem), but rather I was randomly picking the winners for my book giveaway contest.
Without further ado, the winners are:


Because I am prone to making up rules as I go along, I decided on some second place packages:

-Meljprincess will be getting a copy of Heretic’s Daughter
-Gaby317 will be getting a copy of Boneman’s Daughter

Not that anyone asked, I randomly selected three people to receive copies of the latest anthology from Apex Publications, Harlan County Horrors, which features my story “Trouble Among the Yearlings”. And those lucky recipients are:

-Amanda Parrish

I will be dropping them an e-mail to collect their addresses and get them their books. Speaking of winners, here are my sons Reese and Malcolm in their Halloween costumes:

(with this comment from a friend: “If Reese couldn’t make it as a writer, he could have dressed as an editor.”)

As for the losers, those would include all of the folks who are still sending in stories for the Dark Faith anthology. I’m afraid those are being deleted unread. Also in the loser category, me for MY Halloween costume. I tweeted “In light of my novel, I’m dressing up for a super hero party as Kevin Matchstick (Mage). I’m betting only one other person will get it.”

See? I was on it! Unfortunately, it later led to this tweet: “”Maybe being a black guy w/ a baseball bat on the south side of Indy wasn’t my best call… officer.” #obscuresuperherocostumefail”

I should have gone more mainstream.


Believe it or not, I normally find Halloween an annoying time of the year (the wife and kids, however, have the entire house decorated all month and only rotate the decorations in time for Christmas). But this year I’m feeling generous, as I usually get when dealing with other people’s stuff, so let’s do a book giveaway. From the Hachette Book Group we have:

The Heretic’s Daughter By Kathleen Kent ISBN: 031602449X

Sins of the Flesh By Caridad Piñeiro ISBN: 0446543837

When Ghosts Speak By Mary Ann Winkowski ISBN: 044658133X

BoneMan’s Daughters By Ted Dekker ISBN: 1599951959

The Historian By Elizabeth Kostova ISBN: 0316070637

For the next two weeks–well, til Halloween–this blog post will be an open thread. Anyone leaving a comment here or on my Facebook cross post (or on my message board) will be considered entered into the giveaway. I’ll pick three winners–who will each get a complete package of the books–based on either random plucking or their ability to make me laugh. Sarcasm only increases the odds in your favor.

I’ll then get with them to get their shipping info so the publisher can send them their prize package. Please ONLY contestants who are US or Canadian residents. And no PO Boxes.

That’s it. Have at it!