Monday, January 16, 2017

The Ravenswood Chronicles: Something Completely Different by @KarynGerrard @lyricalpress #Gothic

I have always been fascinated by immortality and the heavy burden such a life state would garner.

Back in 2011 I wrote a few paranormals. I haven't written in that genre in years. Yet something drew me back to the immortality theme again and again. I always loved Frankenstein. Coming back from the dead? I wanted to write a romance, but not go full paranormal. In other words, not a vampire or some other unworldy creature, but an ordinary man dealing with extraordinary circumstances.

Beloved Monster fell into place. I originally envisioned three books in this series, Victorian, WW II, and the present day. However, historical and contemporary settings are not what the publisher wanted in a series, so only two books to keep it in the historical genre.

The Ravenswood Chronicles follows Luke, or Lucas Madden, Viscount Ravenswood. Beloved Monster (book 1) begins in the 1890's, showing a dissolute rake and his untimely death. No one really mourns him, he was a complete reprobate. The heroine, Glenna, who had her heart broken by this man a few years before, does not mourn him either.

But Luke does not rest in peace. For he is dug up and used by an eccentric scientist for an experiment. This is where the Frankenstein angle comes in.

I knew when I wrote this it was so different, because it was a complete mash of so many genres. It has fantasy elements, sci-fi, Gothic, but at its heart it is a romance. I also threw Beauty and the Beast and The Picture of Dorian Gray into the blender.

It is soooo different from anything out there and from anything I've ever written. It is something I am proud of. Beloved Monster got me multiple contract offers from Kensington Publishing. Caught the attention of literary agents, enough that two of them wanted to speak to me on the phone?! (I signed with Elaine Spencer of The Knight Agency) Amazing. Even my mother liked it! lol.

Give it a try!

BELOVED MONSTER by Karyn Gerrard
Book 1 of The Ravenswood Chronicles



  • Print Length: 191 pages
  • Publisher: Kensington Publishing/Lyrical Press 
  • Publication Date: September 13, 2016

  • What makes a man? 
    The wild and dissolute Viscount Ravenswood lives only for his own pleasure, caring not one wit for the broken hearts left trampled in his wake. But his decadent lifestyle finally catches up to him in a fatal carriage race. It’s an infamous and spectacular end to a brief, immoral life—or is it?

    And who is the woman who loves him?
    When Glenna Parker stumbles upon her cousin Reed Parker’s cluttered laboratory, she could never have imagined the mad experiment he is about to embark upon—to bring a man back from the dead. Not just any man, but Ravenswood, who once shattered her heart. With no memory of his former life, Glenna calls him Luke, and finds herself enchanted by his compassion—and passion. Protecting the scarred Luke has become Glenna’s sole mission, but can she protect her heart from her beloved monster?


    BUY BELOVED MONSTER NOW: (Bonus! On Sale until Jan 31st for 99 cents!)



    Book 2, Beloved Beast (Feb 28, 2017), follows Luke into WW II London. A new life. A new love. A new adventure. I will admit one of my favourite films, Casablanca, was a huge influence on the plot. I even used a facsimile of one of the film's famous quotes in homage.

    I had fun writing this as I've never done WWII setting. I loved the research, learned things I never knew before. As I wrote, I envisioned these books as a mini-series unfolding in my mind and wrote it as such. It certainly has more action than anything I've written before.

    Again, this has a mash of genres, Spy thriller, suspense, fantasy, sci-fi, Gothic, etc, but again, this is a romance. Some may not like that Luke loves again, but he is possibly immortal. He feels things deeply. All his senses are heightened. Even more so as the years pass. People he loves are growing older, and he is not, Or they die, leaving him alone. How to grapple with it all?

    I had a good deal of fun writing these two books, and an author can't ask for more than that.

    Give them a try, for they are...something completely different. :)



    BELOVED BEAST Book #2 The Ravenswood Chronicles

    Historical/Fantasy/Suspense
    Kensington Publishing Lyrical Press
    74,000 words +
    Release date: Feb 28, 2017
    (can be read as a stand alone)

    If a man can live forever . . .

    A lifetime ago, the debauched Viscount Ravenswood lost his life, only to be revived as as new man with a new name…and a new desire for love. Now, scarred and monstrous of visage, Luke Madden has outlived his beloved wife. Crushed by loss and despair, he swears to never feel such a love again. For such a perfect mingling of souls could never happen twice in one lifetime. Especially for a beast such as Luke believes himself to be . . .

    . . . how can he love forever?

    Gillian Browning is a bold woman of action. But her spy activities in pre-war Germany have made her a target. Now in London, she is being hunted by ruthless Nazi operatives. Luckily, a fellow spy knows someone who can protect her—Luke. Taking Gillian to his former home in the country, he reluctantly finds himself caring for her more than he thought possible, and to his surprise she reciprocates. But when a threat from Luke’s own past increases their peril, he must decide if he has the true strength to love—and trust—again . 

    BELOVED BEAST: Pre-Order Now!


    Amazon/AmazonUK/KOBO/Barnes and Noble/iTunes/


    Karyn Gerrard, born and raised in the Maritime Provinces of Eastern Canada, now makes her home in a small town in Northwestern Ontario. When she’s not cheering on the Red Sox or travelling in the summer with her teacher husband, she writes, reads romance, and drinks copious amounts of Earl Grey tea. 

     Even at a young age Karyn’s storytelling skills were apparent, thrilling her fellow Girl Guides with off-the-cuff horror stories around the campfire. A multi-published author, she loves to write sensual historicals and contemporaries. Tortured heroes are an absolute must. 

     As long as she can avoid being hit by a runaway moose in her wilderness paradise she assumes everything is golden. Karyn’s been happily married for a long time to her own hero. His encouragement and loving support keeps her moving forward.



    Wednesday, January 4, 2017

    SALE! #99Cents Beloved Monster by @KarynGerrard #Historical #Gothic @lyricalpress


    BELOVED MONSTER by Karyn Gerrard
    Book 1 of The Ravenswood Chronicles

  • Print Length: 191 pages
  • Publisher: Kensington Publishing/Lyrical Press 
  • Publication Date: September 13, 2016

  • What makes a man? 
    The wild and dissolute Viscount Ravenswood lives only for his own pleasure, caring not one wit for the broken hearts left trampled in his wake. But his decadent lifestyle finally catches up to him in a fatal carriage race. It’s an infamous and spectacular end to a brief, immoral life—or is it?

    And who is the woman who loves him?
    When Glenna Parker stumbles upon her cousin Reed Parker’s cluttered laboratory, she could never have imagined the mad experiment he is about to embark upon—to bring a man back from the dead. Not just any man, but Ravenswood, who once shattered her heart. With no memory of his former life, Glenna calls him Luke, and finds herself enchanted by his compassion—and passion. Protecting the scarred Luke has become Glenna’s sole mission, but can she protect her heart from her beloved monster?



    BUY BELOVED MONSTER NOW: (On Sale until Jan 31st for 99 cents!)




    COMING SOON!



    BELOVED BEAST Book #2 The Ravenswood Chronicles

    Historical/Fantasy/Suspense
    Kensington Publishing Lyrical Press
    74,000 words +
    Release date: Feb 28, 2017
    (can be read as a stand alone)

    If a man can live forever . . .

    A lifetime ago, the debauched Viscount Ravenswood lost his life, only to be revived as as new man with a new name…and a new desire for love. Now, scarred and monstrous of visage, Luke Madden has outlived his beloved wife. Crushed by loss and despair, he swears to never feel such a love again. For such a perfect mingling of souls could never happen twice in one lifetime. Especially for a beast such as Luke believes himself to be . . .

    . . . how can he love forever?

    Gillian Browning is a bold woman of action. But her spy activities in pre-war Germany have made her a target. Now in London, she is being hunted by ruthless Nazi operatives. Luckily, a fellow spy knows someone who can protect her—Luke. Taking Gillian to his former home in the country, he reluctantly finds himself caring for her more than he thought possible, and to his surprise she reciprocates. But when a threat from Luke’s own past increases their peril, he must decide if he has the true strength to love—and trust—again . 

    Pre-Order Now!





    Karyn Gerrard, born and raised in the Maritime Provinces of Eastern Canada, now makes her home in a small town in Northwestern Ontario. When she’s not cheering on the Red Sox or travelling in the summer with her teacher husband, she writes, reads romance, and drinks copious amounts of Earl Grey tea. 

     Even at a young age Karyn’s storytelling skills were apparent, thrilling her fellow Girl Guides with off-the-cuff horror stories around the campfire. A multi-published author, she loves to write sensual historicals and contemporaries. Tortured heroes are an absolute must. 

     As long as she can avoid being hit by a runaway moose in her wilderness paradise she assumes everything is golden. Karyn’s been happily married for a long time to her own hero. His encouragement and loving support keeps her moving forward.



    Saturday, December 31, 2016

    2016: All Romance, Ellora's Cave and More. Here's Hoping 2017 is...Better by @KarynGerrard



    Col. Potter from MASH had it right, and it certainly fits for the year 2016. I won't run down the events of the year, like Trump's election (!?!) and all the celebrity deaths and other world events, instead I will narrow the focus on romance publishing and my own year.

     More small digital epubs closed, some did it the right way like Amber Quill Press, and some did it the shit way, like Tourque and Ellora's Cave. Or like Samhain Publishing who claimed to be closing, then did an about-face, messing with author's heads and their publishing plans.
    Both Tourque's (MM Pub) and Ellora's Cave played the victim card, bemoaning those evil authors for their decline. Both also did not pay what was owed. Both were sleazy and underhanded in their dealings. Good Riddance. All that is left in their wake are unpaid authors. As usual.

    My personal take from all this? I no longer submit to independently owned digital pubs. Lesson learned.

    Can anyone be trusted in this business? To give the final F-You to 2016, independent e-book distributor (and also a publisher), All Romance, sent out a shocking email 4 days before the end of the year, saying they are going dark Jan 1.

    Oh, and to you authors and publishers? F-You. If you agree to our shitty deal, we will give you 10 cents on the dollar for the 4th quarter. To you readers? F-You. Good luck cashing in those rebate vouchers and backing up your reader library.

    Owned by Lori James who writes under the pen names of Samantha Sommersby and SJ Harper, apparently this business took in millions in 2009. So what happened? We may never know. **UPDATE**: Click HERE for possible explanation.
    Again, an independently owned business run into the ground and others will suffer. To add insult to injury, ARe removed the delete button on the book maintenance page, so publishers (Self or Traditional) cannot remove their books from the server.

    Who is next? Smashwords? Draft2Digital? A larger corporate publisher or distributor? Things supposedly aren't good at NOOK. It could happen anywhere--any time. Yes, this is a hypothetical question, I am not saying these places are in trouble.

    The publishing industry is in flux, sales are down in digital, way down, Authors are being squeezed on all sides. Depressing, but not totally hopeless. I have a feeling when this all shakes out there will only be a couple of vendors left (Amazon for one, goes without saying) and probably the only digital pubs will be the ones the larger and/or corporate publishers have. Self publishing will still be an option, but in what context?

    Looking to 2017 with hope and a smile is really difficult. But if writing is something you enjoy, if you are not depending on it to earn a living, why not keep going? Find your niche and gather satisfaction from what you do.

    I will be continuing on as I do enjoy the writing and I don't need to earn a living at it. The one bright spot for me was getting a literary agent in Dec. I am not expecting big sales success, but am looking forward to learning more, deepening my writing. Maybe even submit something to the 'Big 5' in the future?

    2016 sucked on many levels. Here's to a better 2017. Even a little better would be welcome.




    Thursday, December 22, 2016

    Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! from @KarynGerrard Goodbye 2016!


    Let's face it, for a lot of people on the globe, 2016 kinda sucked. A lot of celebrity deaths, many shocking, the American election of Trump, the rise of global racism, sexism, etc...it's damned depressing.

    On a more personal note, the year was filled with dips and valleys but also a few good moments. Still struggling with Mr. Gerrard's health, but also thankful it's not worse. Together we will deal with whatever comes.

    On a more professional note, book sales were flat for just about everyone. Digital sales in particular took a hit. Good thing I'm not in this for the money. I even contemplated giving it up. But as often as life goes, stuff happened. I decided to embrace the opportunity and in turn, after close to six years being published, I now have an agent. (Elaine Spencer of The Knight Agency)

    I am guarded about 2017, I'm at an age where I will take what comes. But the holiday season is a time to reflect, be thankful, and relax and enjoy the positive aspects of one's life.

    So let me take this opportunity to thank those readers who buy and read my books. To those who let me know how much they enjoyed it either by email, comment, or best of all, a review. As much as I enjoy writing the stories, I also enjoy sharing them.
    There is more to come, both in historicals and contemporaries.
    To all of us, a very Merry Christmas, and here's to a Happy New Year.


    To quote Col. Potter from MASH: "Here's to the new year, may she be a damned sight better than the old one."

    Happy Holidays! (taking a bit of a break, cheers!)




    Monday, December 12, 2016

    GOODREADS GIVEAWAY! #Win Paperback Copy of Beloved Beast by @KarynGerrard @lyricalpress



    There is a Goodreads giveaway running from my publisher, Kensington Publishing/Lyrical Press for the chance to win 1 of 2 paperback copies of Beloved Beast (The Ravenswood Chronicles #2)

    This contest runs from Dec 10th to Dec 20th.



    BELOVED BEAST Book #2 The Ravenswood Chronicles

    Historical/Fantasy/Suspense
    Kensington Publishing Lyrical Press
    74,000 words +
    Release date: Feb 28, 2017
    (can be read as a stand alone)

    If a man can live forever . . .

    A lifetime ago, the debauched Viscount Ravenswood lost his life, only to be revived as as new man with a new name…and a new desire for love. Now, scarred and monstrous of visage, Luke Madden has outlived his beloved wife. Crushed by loss and despair, he swears to never feel such a love again. For such a perfect mingling of souls could never happen twice in one lifetime. Especially for a beast such as Luke believes himself to be . . .

    . . . how can he love forever?

    Gillian Browning is a bold woman of action. But her spy activities in pre-war Germany have made her a target. Now in London, she is being hunted by ruthless Nazi operatives. Luckily, a fellow spy knows someone who can protect her—Luke. Taking Gillian to his former home in the country, he reluctantly finds himself caring for her more than he thought possible, and to his surprise she reciprocates. But when a threat from Luke’s own past increases their peril, he must decide if he has the true strength to love—and trust—again . 

    Pre-Order Now!






    Karyn Gerrard, born and raised in the Maritime Provinces of Eastern Canada, now makes her home in a small town in Northwestern Ontario. When she’s not cheering on the Red Sox or travelling in the summer with her teacher husband, she writes, reads romance, and drinks copious amounts of Earl Grey tea. 

     Even at a young age Karyn’s storytelling skills were apparent, thrilling her fellow Girl Guides with off-the-cuff horror stories around the campfire. A multi-published author, she loves to write sensual historicals and contemporaries. Tortured heroes are an absolute must. 

     As long as she can avoid being hit by a runaway moose in her wilderness paradise she assumes everything is golden. Karyn’s been happily married for a long time to her own hero. His encouragement and loving support keeps her moving forward.


    Friday, December 9, 2016

    BIG NEWS: I Have a Literary Agent! Signed w/ The @KnightAgency by @KarynGerrard #Milestone



    I will admit, there were a couple of times in 2016 I nearly quit this whole writing/pub biz. I had myself convinced I would just write once in a while, revise reverted stories and release them whenever under my own KG Publishing. No muss, no fuss.

    Then I found myself standing at a crossroad. An opportunity arose and I had to make a choice, After nearly six years of being a published author, what did I really want? Would I slip back into hobby mode (which I must also admit, is what I thought of my writing for the first few years) and self-pub exclusively, or will I finally admit to myself I have come a long way, improved as a writer and bigger publishers were interested in my stories?

    The time had come for me to have a little confidence in my talent and pursue this career. Yes, I can finally say it is a career. It took me quite a while to get there.

    Sometimes I felt like George McFly in the Back to the Future movie:

    Marty: What are you writing?
    George: Uh, stories. Science fiction stories about visitors coming down to Earth from other planets.
    Marty: Get out of town, I didn't know you did anything creative. Well, here let me read some -
    George: Oh, no, no, no. I never, I never let anybody read my stories.
    Marty: Why not?
    George: Well, what if the didn't like them? What if they told me I was no good? I guess that might be hard for somebody to understand.

     Yes, every now and then, I suffered from "George McFly Syndrome." Authors are a nervous, sensitive lot (for the most part) And at times, I was no different. I didn't suffer from this 24/7, but it would pop up at the most inopportune moments.

    I was determined not to have it affect me here. With a determined wind at my back, I did research on a number of agents who handle romance, read all the blog posts on how to craft a query, made a short list, and with a trembling finger, hit send.

    OMG, I received a few responses! That alone shocked the hell out of me.

    They asked for a full! The nerves were kicking in, checking my email constantly.

    Two agents wanted to talk to me. On the phone. *passes out*

    They were interviewing me as much as I was interviewing them. Both were well-informed and pleasant. It helped to calm my nerves, though there were a few moments when I experienced a brain freeze.

    Now came the difficult thing. Make a choice. Yikes. I signed with Elaine Spencer of The Knight Agency. 

    I am aware this is a big milestone in an author's career. Considering some agents receive hundreds of queries every month, I am humbled. I'm aware that this doesn't mean instant success, but it does open up avenues of opportunity and a chance to polish and deepen my writing.

    2016 was not such a great year on many levels (a lot of people feel the same) So having this happen before Christmas made up for a lot of disappointments.

    ONWARD! :)

     
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