Experiment in Publishing — Red Fox is FREE

First things first: Because it’s the hol­i­days and I am in the Christ­mas spirit (yes, I said Christ­mas, so sue me), I have decided to make Red Fox a free book. In dig­i­tal form, at least. And pos­si­bly for­ever. I’m cel­e­brat­ing its new cover and also I really liked this whole “giv­ing” thing with The Ben­son. And it’s the sea­son to give. Yadda, yadda.

So, folks, if you haven’t read Red Fox yet (the sec­ond book in the Exper­i­ment in Ter­ror Series) or you want an edi­tion with the new cover, just head on over to Smash­words here: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/66366 and down­load it. It’s avail­able for any e-reader device.

Red Fox is actu­ally my favorite book of the series (other than Lying Sea­son) and really deserves more atten­tion, so hope­fully this will bring it some. If you can help spread the word, that would be great.

The other thing is, I’ve been hear­ing a lot about the KDP Select Pro­gram. This is the pro­gram where authors make their e-books avail­able through Kin­dle and the books are pro­moted and shared, with the author get­ting a piece of the fund pie. You have to enroll for 90 days but the catch is, in a very Microsoft-type deal, the books can ONLY be avail­able through Kin­dle. You can not sell your E-book ver­sion any­where else. At least not for those 90 days.

I like the idea of get­ting free pro­mo­tion and actu­ally mak­ing a bit of com­pen­sa­tion for my work. I don’t like the idea of Ama­zon try­ing to take over the sys­tem and essen­tially make all other e-readers moot. That’s just…not very nice. That said, you can down­load the Kin­dle app for your iPhone or iPad and the .mobi for­mat does work in other devices.

So I have decided to do a lit­tle exper­i­ment. An Exper­i­ment in Pub­lish­ing ha. Might end up being an Exper­i­ment in Ter­ror, I don’t know. Any­way, I have enrolled Dark­house in the pro­gram. The rest of the series (Red Fox, The Ben­son, Dead Sky Morn­ing, and Lying Sea­son) will still be avail­able else­where (B&N, Smash­words, iTunes) but Dark­house will be exclu­sive to the Kin­dle for the next 90 days.

Let’s see what happens.…


Here’s the truth about book cov­ers — they are really, REALLY impor­tant. A great cover (such as Lying Season’s) will entice the reader to pick it up (maybe explains why Lying Season’s sales last week were through the roof…well, for the EIT series any­way), while a bad or unin­ter­est­ing cover may cause peo­ple to hes­i­tate or even refuse to read a book.

I was eter­nally unsat­is­fied with the cover of Red Fox. Though the artist at the time did com­ply with what I asked for, I thought the end result was mud­dled and NOT AT ALL rep­re­sen­ta­tive of this fun and fast-paced story. It is well-drawn, detailed, moody and makes for nice art but just isn’t book cover mate­r­ial. But when you’ve com­mis­sioned a piece and you have a pub­li­ca­tion date to hit, you some­times have no choice but to make do.

I also noticed that a lot of read­ers were skip­ping RED FOX which I thought was a real shame since an infor­mal poll has placed Red Fox as the best written/most enjoyed Exper­i­ment in Ter­ror novel (though that may change with Lying Sea­son now out). I could only attribute the gloss­ing over of this awe­some book because of the dull and unin­ter­est­ing cover. It just didn’t cap­ture the magic or the eye.

And so, me and my (new) artist have been hard at work cre­at­ing a new cover that’s a lit­tle more eye-pleasing.

Start­ing Tues­day, this cover will be re-issued on all E-versions of the book on Smash­words, Kin­dle, Nook, etc (which is also get­ting some extra inter­nal re-formatting for glitchy issues) and hope­fully by the end of week, the paper­back re-issues will be done as well. I’ll announce when they are avail­able. I’ll be hav­ing a give­away too, so be sure to check back then!

Oh right…the new cover…ta-da!

It was a song? Plus KINDLE and PAPERBACK

Yeah. Lying Sea­son is actu­ally song by Alice in Chains. It was a b-side, so a lot fans don’t even know about it. I loved the song, thought it was fit­ting for the set­ting (Seat­tle, yo) and, well, all the lies…and so, voila.

Lying Sea­son has a playlist, as do all of my books. With this book it was less about the indi­vid­ual songs and more about what albums I lis­tened to dur­ing cer­tain scenes. Actu­ally, music plays a very impor­tant role in this book, more so than in any of the other ones. And thus, I invite you to down­load and lis­ten to the songs below at play them at the right moments.

Lying Sea­son Playlist

The Bea­t­les Abbey Road - “Oh! Dar­ling” and “Maxwell’s Sil­ver Ham­mer” fea­tured promi­nently dur­ing Jenn and Dex’s car sing-along (ugh). “Come Together” is heard play­ing in Rebecca’s car. Perry almost hears “I Want You (She’s So Heavy)” dur­ing a piv­otal scene near the end.

Soundgar­den — “Hands All Over”, “Gun” and any song from Louder than Love make good dri­ving music on your way to a men­tal asy­lum. Cor­rec­tion: a haunted men­tal asy­lum. “Pretty Noose” Perry’s Karoake song of choice.

Rob Zom­bie The Sin­is­ter Urge — Perry’s “get­ting ready for a date” album of choice. Nor­mal, right?

Alice in Chains — Dirty, gritty, Seat­tle streets. Wet weather and despair. Drugs. Tor­ment. No way out. Pretty much every AIC song fits in with this book. Lis­ten to them all.

Bohren and Der Club of Gore Beileid — any­time Perry is feel­ing reflec­tive (so, uh, the whole book?)

The Kills Blood Pres­sures - “The Last Good­bye” is one emo­tional wal­lop of a song and pretty explanatory

Fan­tomas Delir­ium Cor­dia — lit­tle secret here…I lis­tened to this album on repeat…and only this album…while writ­ing every sin­gle scene inside the men­tal insti­tu­tion. Yeah. It scared the hell out of me and if you hap­pen to play this while read­ing it (while read­ing ANYTHING) it’ll do the same to you too. Take my word for it. Bless you Fan­tomas. You keep on giving.

PS — Lying Sea­son is now avail­able on KINDLE and in PAPERBACK on Cre­ate­space


Lying Sea­son — the fourth book in the Exper­i­ment in Ter­ror Series — has been released today. I’m absolutely enam­ored with the full cover, giv­ing a beau­ti­ful hint at the sex­i­ness, ghosts, chills and thrills that lie inside. Oh and INTENSITY. In my opin­ion, this is the most emo­tional, poignant and intense book of the series and my proud­est piece of writ­ing. So…take what you will from that.

So far it’s avail­able on Smash­words (in any e-format) with Kin­dle to come later in the day. I’ll keep you posted when the paper­backs are avail­able from Ama­zon (prob­a­bly in the next few days).

In the mean­time, you can read the first FOUR chap­ters HERE (what, the return of Uncle Al!) though I obvi­ously rec­om­mend that if you haven’t read the series, you start with DARKHOUSE (just $0.99) and work your way up.

OR you can down­load The Ben­son - an EIT novella — for free from Smash­words. Just click HERE for the Smash­words down­load in any e-format or read the PDF HERE (no down­load needed). It’s not the series but it gives you a wee idea of how the char­ac­ters of Perry and Dex work. And it’s free — free e-books rule.

I’m also work­ing on a give­away. A few months ago I cre­ated two excel­lent give­aways — my win­ners have been very patient, but I’m proud to say their merch has come in and will be on their way to them shortly. But I’m so in love with the EIT merch, that I want to host another one for sim­i­lar prod­ucts! Check ‘em out!

So stay tuned. I hope to have a Lying Sea­son give­away com­ing at you very soon :)

Lying Season — Chapters 1 & 2 now online

It’s my 30th Birth­day today *cries*

OK, I’m over it. I’m spend­ing my day clean­ing the crap out of my apart­ment — how adult is that? (note this is about as adult as I get).

I received some pretty amaz­ing gifts for my bday (bot­tles of great wine, a PS3, Mastodon CD, etc) so I thought I’d turn right back and be gen­er­ous with you, my read­ers. Also, I did say the other day if I gar­nered enough inter­est through RTs and the like about my Lying Sea­son teasers, that I’d put the sub­se­quent chap­ters up.

Well, here you go — I kept my promise. Read Lying Sea­son (EIT #4) first TWO chap­ters right HERE.

And since it IS my birth­day and all, any retweets about this blog post would be GREATLY appreciated.

Cheers and happy read­ing!

OH and don’t for­get about The Ben­son — EIT #2.5 — a free novella you can down­load HERE.

Lying Season (EIT #4) teaser

With all the hub-bub over the release of The Ben­son (my free EIT novella, which you can down­load here: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/112314 — please let me know if you like it) I sorta for­got about Lying Sea­son.

Well, no not really. It’s not pub­li­ca­tion day yet. There is still some tweak­ing and for­mat­ting to be done.

But because it’s almost my birth­day, and I have a few more days left in my twen­ties to be a tease about things, I decided to put up the first chap­ter of Lying Sea­son. If it con­fuses you, that’s OK…once you read the rest of the book it will make some sense. Sorta ;)

Read the first chap­ter of Lying Sea­son (EIT #4) HERE.

I may release the sec­ond chap­ter tomorrow…depends how naughty I feel.

OH and don’t for­get, if you like what you read, you can still enter to win paper­back copies of Lying Sea­son through Good Reads HERE:

Goodreads Book Give­away

Lying Season by Karina Halle

Lying Sea­son

by Karina Halle

Give­away ends Decem­ber 13, 2011.

See the give­away details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

The Benson — Free EIT E-book now available

The free e-novella of The Ben­son (Exper­i­ment in Ter­ror #2.5) is now avail­able online.

Here’s the blurb:

This short story/novella sees ama­teur Youtube ghost-hunters, Perry Palomino and Dex Foray, inves­ti­gat­ing the real-life haunt­ings of Portland’s infa­mous hotel, The Ben­son. It occurs between books #2 (Red Fox) and #3 (Dead Sky Morn­ing) and is the per­fect primer for any­one inter­ested in the EIT series.

Here’s the E-Book in PDF form — to read CLICK THIS LINK

Here’s the E-Book at Smash­words where you can grab it in any E-reader’s for­mat — to down­load CLICK THIS LINK

You will also be able to grab it on the Good Reads site HERE.

It’s free, it’s free, it’s FOREVER free — my gift to you. TELL YOUR FRIENDS :)


Sex, Drugs & Rock n’ Roll — why too taboo for YA?

You know, I had a bit of down­time today (and when I say down­time, I mean early this morn­ing when I was able to con­cen­trate for a few hours on my books and mar­ket­ing) and I was tak­ing a look around the place. And by place I mean the inter­net. And I was look­ing at books in par­tic­u­lar. So I was look­ing at books on the inter­net (research, really, not pro­cras­ti­nat­ing — I swear).

There’s a lot of books out there, espe­cially Young Adult books. I mean, the mar­ket is just so over­sat­u­rated with them, yet they all seem to find a home in someone’s book­shelf. They all deal with a range of topics…some are straight for­ward high school. Some are para­nor­mal. Some are dystopian. Very few deal with a young adult out­side of high school. My series, Exper­i­ment in Ter­ror, does…I mean, just because you are 22-years old (as Perry Palomino is), it doesn’t mean you’re an “adult” adult. I mean, I myself turn 30 in, oh, 10 days and I cer­tainly don’t feel like one.

Any­way, that was one big dif­fer­ence I noticed with my books. Perry is a young, con­fused woman, not quite an adult but not a teen. She’s no longer in high school — hell, she’s no longer in col­lege either — but a lot of her hangups and her dicey past revolve around her vaguely described high school years. This com­bi­na­tion cre­ates a series of nov­els that have a decid­edly YA feel to them, yet aren’t writ­ten for high school­ers. The Exper­i­ment in Ter­ror Series is kind of an enigma, just float­ing around with com­po­nents that can be pulled into any genre…YA, hor­ror, adult, para­nor­mal romance, thriller, sus­pense, super­nat­ural, urban fan­tasy. I think it works, the fact that it can shapeshift accord­ing to the reader, but it also makes it very hard to clas­sify at times.

The other dif­fer­ence I noticed was…man, my char­ac­ters don’t make it easy on the reader. There’s no huge pay-off at the begin­ning. Answers aren’t handed to you. The char­ac­ters behave real­is­ti­cally but real­ism can drive you nuts. They aren’t per­fect and aren’t try­ing to be. They make mis­takes. OFTEN. If you want to look at my books from a YA per­spec­tive, you have to pre­pare your­self for the fact that A) there is no life les­son about reli­gion here (unless you can deduce one for your­self) B) there are no chaste teens here (there is sex…maybe not at first, but def­i­nitely later) C) there are no goody-goodies (my char­ac­ters have used drugs in the past, and par­tic­u­larly in Book #4 Lying Sea­son, use it in the present) D) they’ve done some morally con­tro­ver­sial things (see Book #3) and E) they don’t cen­sor their lan­guage (as one reviewer pointed out “who says ‘darn it’ when con­fronted by a ghost” — you say “Fuu­u­u­u­uck!” and run away).

A lot of peo­ple might tell you that it’s not the sort of book that’s con­sid­ered YA solely because of it’s con­tro­ver­sial con­tent. As if teenagers these days A) aren’t spir­i­tu­ally con­flicted B) don’t have sex C) don’t use drugs or drink D) don’t have abor­tions, shoplift or lie D) don’t swear. My nov­els in no way make any of the above look cool (except for the sex but that’s just my opin­ion) but I don’t believe in sugar-coating real­ism in order for it to appeal to a puri­tan­i­cal soci­ety that believes your char­ac­ters have to be per­fect role mod­els. Fuck that shit.

So there you have it. My books are scary, funny, sexy and ulti­mately real. And when faced with the super­nat­ural, with sur­real sit­u­a­tions, I think hav­ing an extremely real­is­tic basis with real­is­tic (imper­fect, badass) char­ac­ters is some­thing that’s impor­tant and — sadly — sorely missed. I know I’m not per­fect (I type this while swill­ing whiskey). Why should my char­ac­ters be?

PS the rock n’ roll part comes in because Perry and Dex have some kick ass taste in music. Also, how many books do you know are named after songs (Red Fox, Lying Sea­son and book#5 On Demon Wings are all songs by some pretty cool bands)? Music makes the world go round.

Bang on.

m / :) m /