Happy New Year!

Hopefully, 2012 was a year that passed with good friends by your side and precious moments spent with your loved ones. As winter creeps in, I appreciate the chilled beauty all around me and stay warm by drinking lots of scorching hot tea. I always read a bit more during the frozen months, plus my mind races with short story ideas, and poems emerge with a distinctly cold bite to them.

Short stories and poems need to be published! So check out this post to venture into the exciting land of submissions. Keep in mind while searching for markets these all-important things…

  • Read the guidelines for each market carefully. If said magazine or e-zine states they only accept literary poetry and fiction, then do not submit horror, fantasy, or science fiction.
  • Take notice if the market for your work accepts simultaneous submissions (submit that poem or story to other markets at the same time) and/or multiple submissions (submit more than one piece at a time), and if your chosen market accepts reprints.
  • Read examples of what has been accepted to that market to provide a better idea of what those editors are drawn to. Some editors are all about surreal experiences that can be interpreted differently by each reader, yet others prefer details galore that make sure the reader gets exactly what the writer is saying. It’s fun to write both ways, so give it a try!
  • Does the market insist upon a bio and intro letter? Most of the time, I’ve included these with my submissions. If it is stated no such things are welcome, then do not send them. Why would an editor not want a bio or cover letter? I’ve worked with a handful of editors who want to judge a piece solely on its own merits and not the background of the writer. If the piece is accepted, then a bio may be requested.
  • If possible, find a submission editor’s name to use with your submission. It shows you have taken a little extra time to read about that market.
  • Unless the publisher’s guidelines state otherwise, use industry standard manuscript formatting. What is that, you ask? Check out William Shunn’s post on industry standard manuscript formatting.
  • Does the market pay? You must decide if this matters, but be sure you know before agreeing to anything.

MARKETS

IDEOMANCER: One of my favorite markets, Ideomancer publishes speculative fiction and poetry. Their guidelines state, “We want unique pieces from authors willing to explore non-traditional narratives and take chances with tone, structure and execution, balance ideas and character, emotion and ruthlessness. We also have an eye for more traditional tales told with excellence.” Their site is beautiful, and the work published is top-notch.

INTERSTELLAR FICTION: If writing about little, green Martians, robots gone mad, or Slide1doomsday devices are your thing, check out this market. Interstellar Fiction loves the old clichés, but if something new blows them away, chances are a publishing credit is coming your way.

THE SOUTHERN REVIEW: You’ll have time to submit to The Southern Review because unsolicited fiction and nonfiction is only accepted (postmarked) September 1st through December 1st, and unsolicited poetry is accepted (postmarked) September 1st through February 1st. If you have poetry ready to go, hurry and submit! Fiction, poetry, essays, including nonfiction and literary essays that are previously unpublished, are considered. Simultaneous submissions are permitted but they ask to be notified promptly if your work is accepted elsewhere.

PERIHELION: If hard science fiction is what you write best, I hope you submit to Perihelion. This e-mag says, “No fantasy. No horror. No fan fiction. No poetry. Stories do not necessarily have to restrict themselves to robots, rocket ships, and extraterrestrials. However, the science and/or technology must be integral to the story. If you remove the science, the story falls apart, or disappears altogether. If the plot can be easily reconstituted as a western, a swashbuckler, or a bodice-ripper, it is probably not for us, either.” Doesn’t this sound like a challenge? I really want to submit to this market!

THE BARCELONA REVIEW: All genres and a diverse styles and techniques are all open game at The Barcelona Review. “We’re after original, potent and powerful writing with a contemporary feel that is literarily sound; writing marked by a strong sense of imaginative distinction. (We do not publish tales, fables or re-worked fairy tales; nor are we after vignettes.)” Submit!

ABANDONED TOWERS MAGAZINE: A market for fiction, poetry, and non-fiction, Abandoned Towers Magazine has an online presence for fantastic reading material and a print publication as well. Guidelines are listed for Art, Books for Review, Audio, Fiction, Non-Fiction, Poetry, and Video, so take your pick and submit.

ALFRED HITCHCOCK’S MYSTERY MAGAZINE: A publisher of crime, mystery, and suspense short stories, AHMM has delighted readers for over fifty years by releasing mystery fiction of “the broadest range and the highest quality, featuring every subgenre of mystery fiction.” Kirkus Reviews adds, “The lack of a specific house style is its greatest strength.” This is an impressive market because many stories featured in AHMM have won dozens of awards, including numerous Robert L. Fish awards for Best First Mystery Short Story of the year. Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine features 12 issues (8 single issues and 2 double issues). Guidelines here.

PRISM: A quarterly magazine whose home is Vancouver, British Columbia, Prism International’s mandate is to “publish the best in contemporary writing and translation from Canada and around the world. Writing from PRISM has been featured in Best American Stories, Best American Essays and The Journey Prize Stories, amongst other noted publications.” Regular features include creative non-fiction, drama, and translations.

FIND MORE MARKETS

NEWPages.com: Do dreams come true? If you dream about a huge listing of links for literary marketsNEWPages.com states, “The most up-to-date and reliable lists of literary magazines on the web.” An example listing for Sliver of Stone shows a writer everything needed to pursue this market. Emerging and established poets, writers, and visual artists from all parts of the globe are welcome to submit.

Speculative Literature Foundation: Speculative fiction is close to my heart, so this absolutely amazing list of market links is one to visit if you’re all about science fiction, fantasy, and horror.

Ralan.com: Providing links to speculative writing markets for over sixteen years, Ralan.com is a site I often visit.

Good luck submitting in 2013, and if you know of a great market, leave a comment!

Thanks for visiting the Noracast.

Accidental Hero/GIVEAWAY!

Danger—pain and suffering, mixed with excitement and enough adrenaline to kill an elephant is calling upon your sense of adventure. Let’s say, Jessie desperately needs your help, and if you fail to answer the calling…death will come her way. Are you ready to embrace this challenge and rush to sacrifice your life for another? Well, my all-time favorite heroes are the ones who’d do just that.

Ah, but things are never so simple. I love accidental heroes. These so-called ordinary men and women exist in their worlds doing what they are supposed to do, until a threat is unleashed that prompts a reaction from these people. Some folks reject the notion they could ever affect the outcome of a situation, others eagerly accept the new, completely risky endeavor dropped upon them.

Take a look at Jake Cottrell, the protagonist (and an accidental hero) in my latest release, The Twelfth Paladin. He’s a prime example of a person living a selfish existence, one who seeks out mischief and absolutely lives for adrenalines rushes, or as he calls them…smackdowns. Yes, Jake is a reckless character with a shady past and a family you would not desire, but he does have something special. Jake has courage and honor, yet they’ve been long ignored. After a death-defying Motocross accident, Jake is physically and mentally tested to see if he can rise above the wickedness around him and become the twelfth paladin in Micah’s (an angel) unit of supernatural warriors. He doesn’t seek out glory. No matter, it finds him anyway.

Another accidental hero I really like is Sam Deed (Vincent D’Onofrio) from the movie Happy Accidents (2000), which also stars Marisa Tomei. Sam is brave, determined, and a guy who never planned on having to endure such an adventure to find love. Although Happy Accidents is a science fiction movie, it’s actually more about the power each of us possess to change things.

From Moviefone: Is Ruby Weaver’s Mr. Right really an emissary from the year 2,470, or is he just a complete loon ball? This question is at the heart of Brad Anderson’s whimsical romantic comedy. The story opens with Ruby (Marisa Tomei) lamenting over her boyfriend Sam (Vincent D’Onofrio) to her shrink (Holland Taylor). In a series of flashbacks, the film quickly sketches Ruby as a neurotic with an unhappy track record concerning men and Sam as an oddball who is afraid of small dogs and has a barcode tattooed to his arm. But he’s nuts over Ruby, and at least initially, that is enough for her. Slowly, Sam begins to reveal his “past.” He tells her that he is from the Dubuque of the future and that he hails from a rare “anachronistic” family who believe that reproduction should occur the old-fashioned, fun way as opposed to the more popular cloning method. At first, Ruby is amused, until she realizes that he’s not kidding. After a series of arguments, he agrees to visit Ruby’s analyst, which yields unexpected results. This film premiered at the 2000 Sundance Film Festival.

Great news—GIVEAWAY! Ends March 27, 2012

Win a copy (e-book, print, or Kindle) of The Twelfth Paladin AND the movie Happy Accidents. Simply answer this question: Are you the type of person who’d become an accidental hero? Since I spend way too much time in the laundry room and grocery shopping…I’d definitely go for it. A little adventure can entice me anytime!

Still not sure if this giveaway is for you? Here’s the latest review of The Twelfth Paladin from Michelle. Her blog is A Lil of Dis A Lil of Dat Chelle Style.

“In all of my years of reading, I can’t say I’ve ever read a book about Angels and Demons. I tend to stick more towards suspense and horror books. Therefore, I was very excited to review The Twelfth Paladin and give myself the opportunity to break out of my reading comfort zone.

We start with the main character, Jake Cottrell, who is a rebel of sorts, if you will. Abandoned by his mom at a young age, living with an angry alcoholic father, it’s no wonder Jake takes to drinking, wild women, and motorcycle racing. However, during one of his races, he becomes injured and things will never be quite the way they were before his accident.

Have you ever had the sensation that things weren’t right? That there was an unseen force working behind the curtains, responsible for strange things or events? Jake deals with these very things as he is reconnecting with a “friend”, Davis Travers, now a successful heart surgeon. Davis, by any standards isn’t a very likable person. It’s a mystery to Jake how Davis managed to become engaged to the beautiful and mysterious Angie Helms as well as the tremendous success Davis obviously enjoys.

In the meantime, as Jake is skirting dangerously along the depths of evil, Micah, an angel, who is not on God’s good side, is sent to help Jake from losing his soul to the darkness. Micah is a likable character who has lost his faith in mankind after thousands of years. He’s witnessed the decline of human kindness and goodness towards each other. He is less than thrilled to be helping Jake and does little to conceal this fact.

I found myself mentally willing Jake to stop his actions as he stepped further and further into the darkness ruled by evil. At the same time, I found myself as curious as Jake as he begins to realize Davis isn’t playing an imaginary game. I became caught up in the action as Jake finds himself being pulled in by temptations which would appear to be too delightful to resist.

Nora Weston captures her characters with a vivid imagination. As you read, you can visualize the scene exactly how she describes it. You will find yourself rooting for the good guys, holding your breath, your heart beating just bit quicker during some of the more intense scenes, and completely caught up in this book!

I can say after reading The Twelfth Paladin, Nora has a new fan. I will definitely be paying attention to when Nora has a new book in the works. Don’t just take my word. Visit Nora and let me know what you think!”

________________________________________________________________

I appreciate the review Michelle! Okay, ready for a supernatural adventure with Jake Cottrell and a science fiction mission with Sam Deed? Enter the GIVEAWAY!

Thanks for visiting the Noracast.

 

 

Twice is Nice in November

November. This is the month I must fight like the chickens, um…dickens, (although chickens can really fight) to keep a good sense of humor while trying to locate any sanity still left in my numb brain as I prepare for the holidays. Even though I simply cannot get warm enough November through March, I must still acknowledge the holiday season should always be filled with goodhearted activities that bring friends and families closer. Being thankful is easier to remember to do in November because of the Thanksgiving holiday, which brings to mind our freedom, and loved ones, yet the simple things in life…like hanging out with your kids or helping a neighbor are also highly valued. Below, you’ll see what I’m thankful for today, but I really could write a book about the blessings I’ve received throughout my life.

Family and Friends: I have six kids, a hubby who is one of the funniest people I’ve ever known, and two unbelievably mischievous dogs (Mushu and Tashi) who keep my life running at a marathon pace. My parents, siblings, and friends are kind plus entertaining, and thank heavens…tolerable of chaos, which comes with a clan like mine!

Electricity: Oh, I know, this may seem like a crazy one since electricity is nothing new, but without electricity, I’d have migrated to the south, because my electric blanket would be useless. Sad to say, my bedroom (in every house we’ve lived in) seems haunted, or…as I’ve said before, I’m actually a vampire! My bedroom is always the coldest room in the house no matter what the thermostat says.

Hot Tea: I will never disclose how much hot tea I drink in a day, but it is a lot. I’m not saying I’d kill for a good cup of tea, but…well, maybe I would. It does not matter to me if it is spring, summer, autumn, or winter—I must have it, and I’m so thankful there is something as simple as hot tea to help kill a bit of the cold.

Books! Well, of course, I’m thankful for books. “The Count of Monte Cristo” by Alexandre Dumas is my favorite. It has adventure, lust, murder…revenge, just everything that makes a great book. I almost always read paranormal romance, science fiction, horror, or fantasy, although history books are something I can get lost in quite easily too.

Now, on to the fun! The Twice is Nice in November contest (November 8-30) has begun. Leave a comment about something you are thankful for. It can be serious or humorous because I’m sure all comments will bring a smile to someone’s face. The winner of this contest (US/Canada) will win a print copy of “The Twelfth Paladin,” PLUS that same winner will also WIN a print copy for a friend because it’s time to get ready for the holiday season.

If you’re an International visitor, feel free to enter! The International winner will receive the e-book, as will that winner’s friend. I’d love to have both a US/Canada winner and an International winner. Questions? noraweston.nw@gmail.com

If you enjoy books about good versus evil, angels and demons, and all things supernatural…please enter!

The Twelfth Paladin 

Good against evil battles as angels, demons, and a temptress extraordinaire, named Rachel Darnell, vie for the soul of Jake Cottrell. Jake foolishly dares Hell to burn him. Hell agrees.

Scarred with angelfire by a rebellious angel, named Micah, Jake Cottrell is sanctioned to become the twelfth paladin in Micah’s supernatural unit of slayers. However, regret abounds as Micah is banished and ordered to protect what he now despises…a human he believes is unworthy of such an honor. Never fear, Jake is a seeker of mischief who soars on a blistering blacktop to escape the wrath of Hell while he transforms into the twelfth paladin.

Check out the book trailer! The Twelfth Paladin

Thank you for visiting the Noracast.

Bloodletter by Angel Haze: Giveaway!

Halloween is fast approaching, bringing with it the choice to give a trick…or treat. Interested in a frightening treat that’s been dipped into murderous mischief? “Bloodletter,” by Angel Haze, quickly grabs your attention and takes you for a wild ride with the Grim Reaper. Read my review here, and then scroll on down into Haze’s realm of nightmares…

“Bloodletter” by Angel Haze

Thou shalt not kill.

A contradictory message written in blood at the scene of a young woman’s murder. Within days, another body surfaces with a similar calling card and, to Detective Ramon Faust and Criminalist Kelly Garret, it’s clear a deadly game is underfoot.

As the rash of horrific crimes continue, a phone call unearths a shocking revelation: Nakeita isn’t the first city the elusive killer has left his mark. The Bloodletter, as dubbed by the media, has played his deadly game before.

Delving deep into the most terrifying case of Kelly’s career, threatening phone calls and flashbacks of a forgotten near-death experience challenge her sanity and the lives of everyone she loves.

Author Bio: 

Angel is a Canadian author who is an avid reader of fantasy, thriller, and mystery novels. She’s a writer of thriller and YA fantasy novels, a fitness enthusiast, and a chocolate fiend. Her free time is devoted to books, dancing, fitness training with P90x, movies and Game of Thrones. Legacies of Talimura: War of the Witch is co-authored by her husband, Slade Sewell. Slade is a man who believes himself to have been born in the wrong century. A thousand years ago, he sees himself not as a conqueror, but a strategist. He is a gamer, a husband, a die-hard Leafs fan, and a brilliant storyboarder.

Bloodletter is available on Amazon and Smashwords.

Connect with Angel:

Twitter
Facebook Page
Facebook Profile
Goodreads
MySpace

Websites:
http://www.angelhaze.com
http://www.angel-haze.blogspot.com

GIVEAWAY/October 2, 2011 -October 10, 2011

Leave a comment to enter this exciting giveaway, which is for one e-book. Good luck!

Brett Talley Visits the Noracast/Interview/Giveaway!

That Which Should Not Be by Brett Talley 

Miskatonic University has a long-whispered reputation of being strongly connected to all things occult and supernatural. From the faculty to the students, the fascination with other-worldly legends and objects runs rampant. So, when Carter Weston’s professor Dr. Thayerson asks him to search a nearby village for a book that is believed to control the inhuman forces that rule the Earth, Incendium Maleficarum, The Inferno of the Witch, the student doesn’t hesitate to begin the quest.

Weston’s journey takes an unexpected turn, however, when he ventures into a tavern in the small town of Anchorhead. Rather than passing the evening as a solitary patron, Weston joins four men who regale him with stories of their personal experiences with forces both preternatural and damned. Two stories hit close to home as they tie the tellers directly to Weston’s current mission.

His unanticipated role as passive listener proves fortuitous, and Weston fulfills his goal. Bringing the book back to Miskatonic, though, proves to be a grave mistake. Quickly, Weston realizes he has played a role in potentially opening the gate between the netherworld and the world of Man. Reversing the course of events means forgetting all he thought he knew about Miskatonic and his professor and embracing an unknown beyond his wildest imagination.

INTERVIEW

That Which Should Not Be by Brett Talley

Welcome to the Noracast, Brett! I had the privilege to review That Which should Not Be, and I must say…it is a fantastic story that held me spellbound all the way through. Congratulations on the wonderful reviews.

What inspired you to write That Which Should Not Be?

I’ve always loved horror, somewhat because I like to be scared, but mostly because of the mystery and magic that you can find there.  The real world can get kinda boring sometimes.  I like the idea of the unexplained.  I had this idea kicking around in my head for a while about a group of people, otherwise strangers, who meet on occasion to discuss stories that tie them together.  I also felt there was a lack of modern horror written in the Gothic style of so many of the great, classic works.  I put the two together, and That Which Should Not Be was born.

There were so many things I liked about That Which Should Not Be, but I especially enjoyed how you took the reader on a journey to various places. Daniel’s adventure, with his newfound friend Charles, from Venice to Vienna, then to Budapest and the troubles they encountered trying to get to Czernowitz made me wonder about your motivation for this part of the novel.

Have you traveled the world…like to Italy, Russia, and Budapest? Also, what is it about Budapest that made you want your characters to go there?

I am one of those people who saves every dime they make so they can spend it on travel.  I’ve been lucky enough to visit a lot of places, including Russia and Italy.  Sadly, I have not yet visited  Budapest, although it is high on my list of places to see.  There is something about Eastern Europe, the way it lies between multiple continents and cultures.  I mention this in the book, but you really have Africa, Europe, and Asia all melded together in one place.  You add to the fact that Eastern Europe was the battle ground between the western Christian nations and the Ottoman Empire, and you have a place that was sort of left behind while Western Europe moved on.  It strikes me as a mystical place.  It’s not a coincidence that the modern vampire myth springs from such a place.

Now I have been to Venice, and I absolutely love that city.  I hope to get back there one day.  There are just so many places to see.

If you have traveled, did you encounter anything or place truly frightening? What about in Massachusetts…is it haunted?

I’ve never been anywhere that frightened me from an otherworldly perspective.  But I have definitely found myself in some scary situations.  I think the most I have ever feared for my life was in the back of a cab near midnight on a mountain in Peru.  A friend of mine and I were out in the back country where most of the population doesn’t even speak Spanish as their first language.  Instead, the speak Quechua, which is related fairly closely to the language of the Incas.  Anyway, we are sort of careening down this darkened mountain road thinking that the next turn might be our last.  The cab driver is barely paying attention.  He has a political rally on the radio.  The speaker is working the crowd into a fever, but he is speaking Quechua, and we can’t understand anything he says.  But then, just as the speech is in mid-crescendo, the speaker yells out Seig!  And the crowd answers Heil!  That continued a few more times while I looked over at my friend and said, “Oh my God.  Our cab driver is a Nazi.”

Massachusetts is definitely haunted, by its past if nothing else.  Everywhere you go you see it, and somehow it feels older than the rest of the country.  Moreover, it is very provincial.  Boston is a long way from any other city, and it is the heart of all of New England.  It is also not a very urban place.  You drive ten minutes and you are in the country.  In places like Danvers and Ipswich, where the whispers of Old Salem and witchcraft are still thick and ever-present.

Also, what place most fascinates you that you’d love to visit?

There are several ancient sites I would like to see, Angkor Wat first on my list.  But if I could go anywhere in the world right now, it would probably be the city of Prypiat, Ukraine, better known by the name of the power plant that sits next to the city—Chernobyl.  I am fascinated with abandoned buildings, and the chance to visit a ghost town that once held 100,000 people is irresistible.  I plan on visiting soon.

I read you received a philosophy and history degree from University of Alabama before relocating to Massachusetts to attend Harvard Law School.  Having Carter Weston…your main protagonist, choose Miskatonic University over his father’s beloved Harvard Law School was a great way to use part of your own background.

Does your background include being an expert sailor like Captain Jonathan Gray? Is he based on a person you know?

Nope!  I’ve barely even been on a boat.  Growing up in Alabama, sailing was not high on my list of activities.  People in Boston often go sailing for fun, but they are all much wealthier than I am.  Maybe one day.

Have you ever experienced a terrifying storm on the open sea like your characters? You made it seem so real!

Thankfully, no.  I think one advantage writers have these days that some in the past didn’t have is that we all have access to media portrayals of a lot of the things we write about.  I can imagine what it would be like to experience that kind of storm, but it also helps that I have seen it happen before on television and in the movies.

Your book addresses the battle between good against evil, darkness and light, plus the dangers lurking far below the earth…in deep caverns of great evil and in the darkest depths of the sea. I liked this aspect of That Which Should Not Be because the caverns and great depths hide unknown evil just as much as the evil buried within some of the super wicked characters within your book.

This brings me to first impressions, which you totally like to play around with. A few of your characters caught me by surprise! I thought they were good…no, nope…no way, but it adds a lot to the plot.

So what is your take on first impressions? Are they (mostly) correct, or have you found first impressions offer up little concerning a person’s true nature?

You can learn a lot from first impressions, there is no doubt about that.  But people tend to be fairly complex.  The danger I struggle mightily to avoid when I am writing is having flat characters.  When you are writing genre fiction, that can be especially difficult—nobody wants to read a hundred pages of domestic angst in the middle of a werewolf novel, for instance.  So if nothing else, I like to try and keep people guessing about the nature of the characters.  I wanted you to never really know who you can trust in That Which Should Not Be.  I also wanted some characters to appear evil who turned out not to be.  But you know, I also think there is a fine line between keeping the audience guessing and failing to reward their expectations.  We don’t want Scar to turn out to be a good guy at the end of The Lion King.  We want the hyenas to eat him, and (*spoilers*) we cheer when they do.

Which one of your characters did you have the most fun writing and why?

Captain Jonathan Gray.  He is a very mysterious character, and I’d like to think it takes a while for the reader to get a handle on him.  Plus, I like strong characters.  Characters like him are dangerous, in a way, because you find yourself pouring everything you like about people into them, and they can come off as stereotypical.  But I think Gray has enough color to him to avoid that.

I’ve read some reviews about That Which Should Not Be, saying how it is evocative of H.P. Lovecraft’s work, and how you are well-versed in the Cthulhu mythos. That is quite a compliment!

Have you been a longtime fan of H.P. Lovecraft and the Cthulhu mythos? If so, what attracts you to that type of fiction?

I didn’t read my first Lovecraft story until I was in my second year of law school.  On a whim, I picked up The Call of Cthulhu and Other Tales, mostly because I really liked the cover.  But it was the quintessential eureka moment.  I have always had a fascination with myths and legends, with the truth they contain and how they help to explain both our past and our future.  When I was in college, I stumbled upon Plato’s depiction of Atlantis, a place I had heard of but never really knew anything about.  Then I learned about other legends of lost lands—Lemuria, the Seven Rishi Cities, Kumari Kandam, Mu, Hyperborea, Thule.  In law school, I would often visit the esoteria section of the library, deep in the bowls of the Widener library, and read old grimoires and holy books of questionable authenticity.  I was very interested in writing something about a lost civilization that disappeared beneath the waves and of the knowledge that disappeared with it.  Once I found Lovecraft, I just devoured everything he had ever written.  When I started on That Which Should Not Be, I decided I wanted to pay homage to many of the classic works of horror and speculative fiction.  Lovecraft was the most prominent.

Who are some of your favorite authors?

Lovecraft, Dostoevsky, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Hemmingway.  Probably read the most books by Stephen King, though.

What is the first book that made a lasting impression on you and why?

I have always been a reader, but for a long time I did so either as disposable entertainment or because someone in school made me.  The first book that really affected me was The Great Gatsby.  I absolutely love that book.  I rarely read books more than once, but I have probably read The Great Gatsby ten times.  The only book I’ve read more is That Which Should Not Be.  If I could write one sentence in my entire life that is as great as “So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past,” I’d die feeling like I accomplished something great.  I honestly don’t think any book has ever captured the essence of the human condition like The Great Gatsby.  And it’s not even 50,000 words long.

Where can readers find you on the Internet?

One blessed day I will have a website.  For now, friend me on Facebook and twitter.  I am also on the new-fangled Google+, as well as Goodreads and Library Thing.

Where can readers purchase That Which Should Not Be?

At all your finest retailers, including Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

That Which Should Not Be: Amazon

That Which Should Not Be: Barnes & Noble

That Which Should Not Be: JournalStone

JournalStone: Facebook, Twitter

Brett Talley: Bio

A native of the South, Brett Talley received a philosophy and history degree from the University of Alabama before moving to witch-haunted Massachusetts to attend Harvard Law School. When people ask, Brett tells them he writes for fortune and glory. But the truth is the stories in his head simply refuse to stay put. Brett loves every kind
of fiction—from horror to literary to historical to sci-fi—as long as there are fantastic characters with a compelling purpose. There’s still magic to be found in fiction, the mysterious and the unknown still beckon there, and the light can always triumph over the
darkness, no matter how black the night may be.

Brett writes when he can, though he spends most of his time working as a lawyer so that he can put food on the table. That is, until the air grows cool and crisp and fall descends. For then it is football time in the South, and Brett lives and dies with the Alabama Crimson Tide. Roll Tide.

Thank you for visiting the Noracast, Brett!

GIVEAWAY/September 23-30: Here’s your chance to win the e-book version of That Which Should Not Be by Brett Talley. (2 copies available)

Giveaway Details:  I’d like to match the book with people’s tastes, so comment about your favorite horror novel, and I’ll pick two people whose tastes match up best!

Playing with Fire

Evil is knowing better, but willingly doing worse. Philip Zimbardo 

Temptations. Who doesn’t have them? Some people feel an uncontrollable urge to devour a dozen Oreos at two o’clock in the morning, and in my home…mint, chocolate-chip ice cream vanishes all by itself, plus the desire for McDonald’s crispy, perfectly salted French fries can blow any diet into a dark abyss if the craving is not controlled. But, face it—none of these temptations, even if succumbed to, will result in anything too atrocious, other than tighter fitting jeans, which is bad enough.

Consider yourself quite fortunate if your temptations are simply a bit of overkill in the donut department, (guilty!) or your love of cars meant you spent too much on custom floor mats, because for Jake Cottrell, protagonist in The Twelfth Paladin, playing with fire…temptations of the wicked kind, may cost him his soul. Jake easily falls into a decadent realm filled with lust, murder, and revenge.

Check out the book trailer!  The Twelfth Paladin at YouTube

Also, heat up your summer with a little mischief of your own…enter the Goodreads Book Giveaway!  June 27-July 27 (2011)

The Twelfth Paladin from Melange Books

In The Twelfth Paladin, good against evil battles as angels, demons, and a temptress extraordinaire, named Rachel Darnell, vie for the soul of Jake Cottrell. Jake foolishly dares Hell to burn him. Hell agrees.

Scarred with angelfire by a rebellious angel, named Micah, Jake Cottrell is sanctioned to become the twelfth paladin in Micah’s supernatural unit of slayers. However, regret abounds as Micah is banished and ordered to protect what he now despises…a human he believes is unworthy of such an honor. Never fear, Jake is a seeker of mischief who soars on a blistering blacktop to escape the wrath of Hell while he transforms into the twelfth paladin. 

Excerpt from Chapter Two

Setup: Jake Cottrell and an old, high school buddy, Davis Travis, have gone to a local carnival in Clearview Oregon. Davis knows Jasmine well and asks her to do a reading for Jake…

Jasmine’s dark green eyes intensified making me feel vulnerable, like my skin was nothing more than clear, plastic wrap. Her crystal ball glowed bluer as pure white light shot out from the top of it. The warm light split up into thousands of hair-like strands, which proceeded to wrap themselves around my stinging flesh. A satisfying, but overwhelming aroma gobbled up the carnival smell once present.

I couldn’t speak, felt immobile in every physical aspect, yet my mind burned. Things about my ridiculous childhood appeared throughout my mind much like a movie. Tender moments shared with Tony were especially heartfelt to see, like the day he showed us our new home. After that, I remembered when my mother left us, and our life mirrored the underworld. Sadness just about asphyxiated me. Out of nowhere, the sorrow left as I relived the surreal accident at the Motocross Track. For a second, I was dead and descending into Hell.

At last, relief came to me as Jasmine released her hands from mine. As fast as a lightning bolt, the white light retracted back into her crystal ball. “My, my, Jake Cottrell,” she said while patting her lovely chest.

“What did you see? Am I going to win a lottery or something?” Standing up to leave, I acted like nothing had happened.

Jasmine came to me and then placed her delicate hand on my right shoulder. A half-smile disappeared when she leaned in to whisper, “Surely you will fall into darkness, before you willingly bathe in the glory of the light. All in due time, Jake Cottrell.”

Faster than Tony could empty a bottle of whiskey, goose bumps consumed my skin. “Stop it. How did you know I dreamed that?”

Inches from my face, Jasmine ran her black nails along my jaw. “You’ve been scarred with angelfire. Your right shoulder I believe? A war is going on, but you won’t accept you’re the twelfth one, will you?” She laughed, dancing about the tent looking more like a medieval witch than a modern-day carnival gypsy. “I hope you’re ready for the ride of your life…because it’s coming.” Jasmine spun around faster as the candles flared and her cackle grew more intense.

“Angelfire, ride of my life, and the twelfth what? Oh, forget it. You’re nuts. Come on, Davis!”

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A seeker of mischief, Jake ends up on a blistering blacktop headed straight for Hell where he must fight for everyone he loves and for his soul. Can he beat the odds and win? Find out in The Twelfth Paladin. Pick up your copy at Melange Books, and soon at Amazon, Borders, and Barnes&Noble, plus other outlets too.

Consider your temptations. What tactics have you’ve taken to keep them at bay? Mostly everyone who knows me…understands perfectly well if any kind of pastry is nearby, I’m going to confiscate it. I cannot resist baked goods, so I try (almost always) to avoid that section of a supermarket. Share your thoughts, ask a question, or leave your favorite strategy for beating temptations.

Thanks for visiting the Noracast!

The Twelfth Paladin: Jake Cottrell

Many moons have come and gone since I lasted posted, but I’ve been in Hell. Seriously…

Yes! I’ve spent the last few months with Jake Cottrell…the protagonist in The Twelfth Paladin, and let me tell you, he got himself into all kinds of trouble, but he’d have it no other way! Take a minute, or two, and get to know the reluctant hero behind the madness in my new supernatural/thriller, The Twelfth Paladin, coming soon from Melange Books.

Check out the book trailer… The Twelfth Paladin

Nora: So, Jake…thanks for taking time out of your busy life to visit the Noracast. I imagine this is pretty lame compared to your supernatural adventure, though, huh?

Jake: Hell, no! I can use a breather, although it will be a short one. It’s not like Micah gives us rookie paladins any time off. Wickedness would like that too much…

Nora: Yep, I totally get what you’re saying. Now, real quick, sum up what your story, The Twelfth Paladin, is about.

Jake: Okay, sure. This story involves an angel and demons, my father…Tony Cottrell, plus murder and mayhem get a stab at ruining my chance at redemption too. For better or worse, I’m the kind of guy who can never get enough smack-downs. You know…an amazing feeling of floating so high, a freaking rush like no other, that you need a smack from the hand of God to bring you down. Well, that’s what my buddies and I chase after in Clearview, Oregon, but those awesome smack-downs are found in the midst of dangerous situations, like racing, bungee jumping…oh, anything that gets the adrenaline pumping. Since walking on the dark side was hazardous to my health, naturally, I had to risk everything and dive deep into chaos. I actually dared Hell to burn me. Hell agreed.

Nora: Are you insane?

Jake: More than you know.

Nora: Uh-huh…yes, you are. Never mind that for now. What’s your connection to Davis Travers?

Jake: Oh, man, he’s one nasty fellow. Looks like an angel, speaks like a saint…and so rich he tossed temptations in front of me too good to resist! We go all the way back to high school. Just wait until your readers learn about his twisted acts of deceit. I hate that guy.

Nora: Sounds like it. And Rachel Darnell?

Jake: Hum, let me think for a second. She’s, um…too hot for words, really. Rachel is the epitome of Hell on earth, so freaking beautiful and treacherous. Yes, a bad combo, I know—yet, I had to have her.

Nora: Why is it wickedness desired you, was hungry for your soul?

Jake: Well, Nora, because I didn’t care one iota about my soul, and lived for the day. Every day was a party, an excuse to wreak havoc, wherever and whenever, the hell I wanted. Motocross, my buddies, and hanging out at this local bar, Zeke’s, were what I did best. Consequences for my actions? I never even considered them, until I made the biggest mistake of my life. Yeah, I hope to only pay for that during this lifetime. We shall see…

Nora: So, you’re a seeker of mischief?

Jake: Absolutely, love it.  It’s a wonder my dad, Tony…didn’t pack my bags and kick me out long ago. I guess he let me stay with him since my self-indulgent, totally useless mother, Elizabeth, left us both. I was like five years old. Okay, time for me go. I’ve a bad feeling.

Nora: Really?

Jake: Yes! Don’t you feel the heat-wave contaminated with mangled whispers of regret, and the smell of pestilence spoiling the air? Devils are everywhere.

Nora: Yikes! Well, then…get to it, and do what you do.

Jake: My pleasure.

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The Twelfth Paladin:

Scarred with angelfire by a rebellious angel named Micah, Jake Cottrell is sanctioned to become the twelfth paladin in Micah’s supernatural unit of slayers. However, regret abounds as Micah is banished from his command and ordered to protect what he now despises…a human he believes is unworthy of such an honor.

Jake slips far away from righteousness, outwardly proving Micah’s judgment, by replying to a wicked email from next@hell.net. Forever a seeker of mischief, Jake dares hell to burn him. Hell agrees. Davis Travers thickens the plot by introducing Jake to Rachel Darnell. A temptress extraordinaire, she erupts from Hell to steal Jake’s soul. After a steamy seduction from the dark side, Jake is left spellbound.

With his soul dangling between Heaven and Hell, Jake soars on a blistering blacktop to escape the wrath of Hell as he fights for redemption while transforming into the twelfth paladin. Feel the heat as you grab your precious soul and go for a virtual roller coaster ride into Hell and back.

TEMPTATIONS

As you can see, Jake has issues with temptations. What gets to you…something that you want to resist, but causes you frustration? Is it your favorite dessert, a desire to live life on the edge, a relentless need to buy things, or is a special person driving you crazy? For me…it’s those warm, glazed donuts screaming for me to devour them as I hurry past the bakery in Kroger. Oh, to be sure, I’m taking a few perfectly baked victims home tonight…

Thanks for visiting the Noracast! Questions or comments? Feel free to leave one below.