New Website!!!

Ladies and Gentleman, I present to you www.aknifeandaquill.com

Don’t forget to subscribe to the new website and feel free to comment about any improvements you’d like to see.

update: WordPress is keeping my links from going out so you may need to copy and paste the address.

-L. Vera

The Monolith is officially Live! “What would you do for one wish?”

Monolithad

The Monolith

Is a new free serial fiction, that I am currently writing. Much like other successful serial pieces of mine there will be a new piece every week.

The new serial fiction has over 20 of my closest fans who submitted an application to actually be in my story. It’s free and should be a very interesting read. Stop by and let me know what you think.

Check it out exclusively on deviantArt here.

via The Monolith is officially Live! “What would you do for one wish?”.

-L . Vera

Got something carnivalesque?

K. A. Laity

Noir Carnival

A call for stories from Fox Spirit Books, publishers of Weird Noir and many more superb volumes.

Dark’s Carnival has already left town, but it’s left a fetid seed behind. There’s a transgressive magic that spooks the carnies and unsettles the freaks. Beyond the barkers and the punters, behind the lights and tents where the macabre and the lost find refuge, there’s a deformity that has nothing to do with skin and bones. Where tragic players strut on a creaking stage, everybody’s going through changes. Jongleurs and musicians huddle in the back. It seems as if every one’s running, but is it toward something—or away?

Carnival: whether you picture it as a traveling fair in the back roads of America or the hedonistic nights of the pre-Lenten festival where masks hide faces while the skin glories in its revelation, it’s about spectacle, artificiality and the things we…

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Help Me Catch Another Art Thief!

-L. Vera

I look at a lot of books, so it’s no surprise that I find covers that look remotely similar or uses images that were stolen, usually off of deviantart.com (from now on will be referred to as dA). Since I frequent dA and Amazon many become apparent.

Usually I let the author know first. I’ll send them a link to the original image and tell them that they shouldn’t be taking an image without permission. The best retort would be to simply tell me they have permission, but guilt must set in and they usually comply. Which in many cases they play stupid or blame someone else.

The truth is, it’s not really my fight. And if anyone said “Screw you!” the only thing I can do track the down the artist and put it into their hands. Many times I find myself apathetic about it, especially since I’ve been busy. I barely have time to keep up with this blog and my writing. I definitely dont have time to track down art thieves.

But there’s one that has been bothering me. One that I’ve been meaning to get to but haven’t and now I go searching for it and I can’t find it. I know it’s still out there. It uses the cover of L.L. Bartlett’s novel Murder On The Mind, but the author whites out all the wording. So if you see it let me know. Luis_Vera05@yahoo.com

Remember authors, ask. You see artwork you like online, just ask the artist. The hardest thing is waiting for a reply or just trying to get ahold of them. Of course, I doubt the thief would get permission here to use a cover from one book for his own and perhaps even in this case the photo could be from a stock site. But I remember looking closer at it and actually seeing where the words used to be and seeing the bad photoshop. Anyways, keep an eye out there and remember that artist struggle just as much as us writer and to have anything stolen just sucks.

 

Other Recommended Post:

How To Use Images Legally (Or How To Make Use Of Images Without Pissing Someone Off)

Since Tomorrow by Morgan Nyberg

Since Tomorrow

by Morgan Nyberg


//

Blog Tour Hosted by
The Masquerade Crew

Continue reading

There’s something in the water!

Delta Legend is so much more than a scary creature story. It’s about second chances, community,new friendships, budding romance, courage, and honor.

There is an inner story that provides vital background for the legend. Kelan has really done a lot of research in order to tell you about this creature and where the events take place. Her descriptions of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta are almost visual.  You can almost feel the sluggish, dark water on your skin and the cold, silty bottom between your toes.

There are many characters that have their parts to play in this book. They are all essential to the plot and add depth, believability and some comic relief.

When Calvin has a brush with the juvenile court system, his mother, Angela, knows she has to do something. After losing her older son Leo to drug and gang violence, she does not want him going down the same path. Her solution is to send Calvin to stay with his great-uncle Samuel for the summer break.  He wants no part of the “cuts”, or back country life and arrives with a big chip on his shoulder.

Samuel was apprehensive about taking in Calvin, but is pleasantly surprised when his great-nephew shows a penchant for machine and engine repair. He proves to be a hard worker and an asset at Samuel’s Marine Repair Shop.

Calvin’s first encounter with Mei Li, a young Chinese farm girl, is confrontational. She sees through his tough guy persona and calls him on it. She is sassy and bold and he wants nothing to do with her.

Samuel takes Calvin into the local cafe and small grocery owned by Frances. It is also where the rental desk for Heron’s Harbor Marina, which her teenage son Jess runs. The locals come there to hang out, have a bite to eat and catch up on the daily news around town. It seems every small town has one of these.

After a little bit of juggling, Calvin and Jess start up a friendship. Mei Li is friends with Jess and includes herself on their outings. It is not hard for the others to notice that Jess has developed an interest in Lauren. She is a nice girl, but hangs with the town bullies. But soon enough Lauren sees them for what they are and joins up with Jess, Calvin and Mei Li.

Good old boys Terry and Neal just want to fish and drink cold beer. They motor to their favorite fishing spot and settle in to catch some dinner when they spot what looks like debris from a boat floating in the water. Seeing what they think is a wig, they hook  it and take a look. What they had on the end of that hook was someone’s face. Their return trip broke records. This is not the only encounter they have with body parts, it seems like they just can’t get a day of fishing in.

It soon becomes obvious that something is preying on the people of the Delta. Something hungry. The fatalities start piling up, and finally even Sheriff Ray Cruz has to accept that there is a deadly creature cruising the waters, killing and eating the unsuspecting .

The mish mash of locals,  along with Calvin and his posse of friends and Sheriff Cruz and bumbling Deputy Burt Watson, unite to combat this evil monster. There are many more characters that I’ve not mentioned, each one adding flavor and dimension to the story.  Kelan has the ability to weave them in without confusing you or slowing down your reading enjoyment. No flipping back and forth to see who’s who.

I particularly liked her characterization of Joe, Tak and Samuel. I smilingly think of them as the Over the Hill Gang.

There are a few surprises, you think something has been left out, but then Kelan slips it in effortlessly, providing all of the answers.

And I can’t wait for you to read the great “Oh No!” ending.

If you are looking for a unique monster story with lots of action, adventure and scares, I recommend you get Delta Legend and get reading.

I loved this book and decided not to do a STAR rating. It deserves much more than 5 STARS.

Exciting News!

Kelan is getting ready to release Delta Legend in print. That’s right. Soon you’ll be able to turn the pages.

You can find Kelan here:

 http://kelanoconnell.blogspot.com

 http://deltalegend.com

AKAQ’s First Anthology: Let’s discuss

First of all, this year is going to be a busy one. In this month alone I’m going through lots of personal changes and they are all very significant, life changing type changes. Writing-wise I have huge plans, both for my own endeavors and for this blog here. The most important is an anthology.

Right now? I would love to just hear input from any writer, any reader, or just anyone who frequents this blog.

When and if I get this going these conditions wont change:

1) Genre: Speculative fiction, crime, noir, horror and sci fi. Pretty much any pulp type material.

2) Cheap and nonprofitable: Depending on the amount of authors I’d like to keep the ebook under $3 and over 99 cents. All profit will go towards the AKAQ website, which includes upgrades, access to more images (Which this website lacks, except for book covers. We have tons of those thanks to Amazon.) and other website related costs.

3) Availability in Amazon. Others are up for debate.

Now, these are topics I would like to discuss:

1) Submission length. Maybe flash/poems in-between stories.

2) Help. I would like either someone who wants to help editing or perhaps some beta readers. I personally like using the writers to go through the whole book, but surprisingly I feel like I’m the only one that ever does it and I feel like I’m bothering the editor, even though I want the whole book, which has my story in it, to be as polished as possible.

3) Covers: I have some ideas already maybe using the image we currently have on our frontpage.

4) A physical book: I once sold pre-orders to my first book and found how successful it was. But after that found almost no sales through lulu.com After that I moved over to Amazon and found a way better and pleasant market. I would like to sale pre-orders through lulu.com again. It’s cheap, I can drop the price to $5 bucks and still make the donation worth it. After all the primary point is to get writer’s work out there and the website’s funds are, if anything, not important at all.

5) Do you want in? I want to include at least 20 authors, and I think I can easily get pieces from the usual bunch around here. I think I plan to send some invites first and then open it up to submissions. This way I could get some bigger names mixed with some new talent.

So discuss, I love a good online discussion. 🙂

-L. Vera