EIT Fan Appreciation Giveaway!

Every once in a while I think an author has to thank her fans and read­ers (hope­fully you’re both!) This is one of those times. With­out sup­port from my read­ers, I wouldn’t be able to write for a liv­ing. I wouldn’t be able to write about Dex & Perry (and Dawn and Sage and Ellie and Cam­den and Jamie and Chris and what­ever other char­ac­ters are com­ing down the lane). I’d be cry­ing in my room, won­der­ing if any­one liked me or my writ­ing, debat­ing if I’ve found my call­ing or not.

Now, I’m only human. I do cry in my room at times because some­times the whole self-publishing game is tir­ing. You work end­lessly around the clock at writ­ing your nov­els, mar­ket­ing your nov­els, design­ing cov­ers, hir­ing edi­tors, doing edits, mail­ing pack­ages, mak­ing con­nec­tions with blog­gers. It’s a more than a full-time gig. You can ask my friends and fam­ily who never see me any­more, it lit­er­ally con­sumes my life.

Then there’s the whole com­pe­ti­tion thing. I know you’re not sup­posed to com­pare your­self with oth­ers, but some­times it’s inevitable. You work hard, believe in your­self and your tal­ent, then watch as all the other books zoom up the charts. You feel like a fail­ure, like your books will never catch on and you won­der what it is about your books that fail to attract “everyone.”

Well, I don’t attract every­one. I know that. I know my books are a tough sell. They aren’t straight-up romance — that’s not my strong suit. The char­ac­ters are ter­ri­bly flawed and f-ed up and yes, I like to scare the pants off of peo­ple. These things do not make a block­buster book.

But what I do attract is a select group of peo­ple whom I like to con­sider more than just fans. I con­sider you all my friends. My allies. My Palo­min­ions. You pick me up when I’m feel­ing down and you make Perry and Dex come alive into this world. When I see a black High­lander come down the street, I get excited! And it’s such a won­der­ful feel­ing to know I’m not alone :)

So, with­out fur­ther ado, I have cre­ated a give­away just for EIT fans and read­ers. You don’t need to post about this or tweet about this. This is just for YOU.

Leave a com­ment telling me how you dis­cov­ered EIT. That’s it. On Fri­day I will draw three win­ners for these iden­ti­cal prizes (fan cho­sen). Oh, and this is open internationally:

a Raf­fle­copter give­away

An EIT hoodie and a Doucheca­noe shirt (cus­tomized to the winner’s size), an EIT logo USB stick with the Exper­i­ment in Ter­ror sound­track, Fat Rab­bit stick­ers AND a signed copy of any your choice of the fol­low­ing paper­backs Dark­house, Red Fox, Dead Sky Morn­ing, Lying Sea­son, On Demon Wings.


Good luck. And thank you!

NOTE: In order to be entered you must com­ment on this blog post AND you must enter your email address or login via FB on the Raf­fle­copter wid­get above. Both need to be done to be entered and Raf­fle­copter will be mak­ing the actual draw…

A sneek peek at Into The Hollow (EIT #6)

WARNING — the fol­low­ing is not suit­able for any­one who hasn’t read books #1–5 in the Exper­i­ment in Ter­ror Series. What you are about to read is the first two chap­ters of Into the Hol­low. Chap­ter one is already at the end of Old Blood, how­ever, you don’t need to have read that book to read this (but it helps!).


Obvi­ously there are spoil­ers for those not caught up to On Demon Wings (#5)



If you’re think­ing of start­ing this series, don’t read this (but do start the series!)






Are you still here? Are you ready?





OKAY THEN. Keep in mind that this is UNEDITED — mean­ing, my edi­tors and beta read­ers and who­ever have not proofed this. THIS COULD ALL VERY WELL CHANGE. You will find typos…I am a ter­ri­ble self-editor.





But I just wanted to share. So here it is…









Oh right, the chapters…




The Devil’s Metal is now LIVE!

Tat­tooed rock stars, out­ra­geous groupies, hot sex and.…the 1970’s? Wait, there’s demons in this too?

Yup. That’s The Devil’s Metal. My first non-Experiment in Ter­ror novel is finally out there for you all to enjoy. And I think you will enjoy it — it’s a fun, wild ride that will have you turn­ing the pages. I can say this because I read it last night and I was on the edge of my seat…somehow I for­got I wrote it and that’s always a good sign in my books ;)

Any­hoo, here is the Ama­zon Kin­dle link: http://www.amazon.com/Devils-Metal-ebook/dp/B009EEOM4S/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1348229977&sr=1–3&keywords=the+devil%27s+metal

And here’s the Smash­words link (and YES it will come to Nook in a few weeks or so but for now, down­load the epub from Smashwords…its easy peasy): https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/236660#longdescr

Paper­backs should be avail­able from Ama­zon next week too :)

Thanks so much for your sup­port every­one xx00

The Devil’s Metal paperback looksee

Woo hoo! Paper­backs of The Devil’s Metal should be com­ing out next week and of course the e-versions will be out this Fri­day! I can’t wait to hold a copy of this in my hands…


I’m also send­ing this to a few real rock stars on my Xmas list. Sweeeeeeet m/

Any­way, I hope you;re as excited for the release as I am…*bounces*

See you all Friday!

The Referral Contest on GoodReads

You know what’s awe­some about read­ing? The whole word of mouth thing. I’ve per­son­ally watched on GoodReads how one per­son is read­ing a book, leaves a review (doesn’t even have to be an awe­some review) and sec­onds later another friend is snap­ping up the book and read­ing it her­self. It’s an amaz­ing process and I owe a lot of Exper­i­ment in Terror’s suc­cess to the fact that many lovely read­ers have tried to get their friends to read it…and in some cases…succeeded!

To say thanks for that, I’ve opened up a buddy con­test where you and your EIT-loving friends could win an Into the Hol­low ARC.

Now obvi­ously it’s a lit­tle hard to reg­u­late a con­test like this because any­one could say “yeah my friends Boo Boo and Mary-Sue have read the book because of me”, so the clos­est thing I could come up with is using GoodReads.

To enter the refer­ral con­test, which is run­ning until Octo­ber 1st, all you have to do is leave a com­ment below on the blog A) link­ing to your GoodReads pro­file and B) link­ing to your friend’s GoodReads pro­file (how­ever many friends you have got­ten hooked). NOTE: if your pro­file or your friend’s pro­file is pri­vate, you will have to add me as a friend. You can delete me later. I just need to be able to see that the friends have indeed read the book (they didn’t have to like it) or are cur­rently read­ing the book (and that’s ANY of the EIT books AND/OR The Devil’s Metal when it comes out).

This con­test is open inter­na­tion­ally and there will be one win­ner and their friends announced on Octo­ber 1st. Obvi­ously there is more than one way to win because if there is a group of you and you’ve got­ten each other hooked, you can be entered as a friend…for exam­ple: Perry reads Dark­house rec­om­mends it to Ada who reads Dark­house and then they both rec­om­mend it to their friend Pippa who reads it. Perry could enter the con­test link­ing to both Ada and Pippa, who both read the book per her sug­ges­tion. But Ada could ALSO enter the con­test, say­ing she got Pippa to read it. So Ada gets two chances to win..see what I mean? So, the­o­ret­i­cally, there could be a lot of win­ners here! And isn’t it fun to win stuff for your friends??

Any­way, that is the refer­ral con­test on GoodReads! Do you have an account? Have you got­ten at least one other friend on Goodreads to read EIT and/or The Devil’s Metal? Then you can enter and you both have  the chance to win a copy. Easy as pie (and you know how Dex feels about pie).

There MIGHT be some pretty cool EIT merch thrown in too…just say­ing ;) That plus an Advanced Reader’s Copy of Into the Hol­low BEFORE pub­li­ca­tion date…pretty cool, right?

Speak­ing of The Devil’s Metal…that segue doesn’t work, but ANYWAY we have our early reviews AND a pub­li­ca­tion date: Sep­tem­ber 21st. I’ll be back to remind you, but I thought I’d give you a heads up…THIS FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 21st, THE DEVIL’S METAL WILL BE AVAILABLE ON KINDLE AND SMASHWORDS. Nook, Kobo, etc to fol­low. AND YES paper­backs are com­ing too.

Oh, and about those reviews.…here they are!

Amanda says:

I was for­tune enough to be a Beta reader for this book. And I am so glad I got to read it first because I can tell you all how amaz­ing it is! If you are a fan of EIT you will love The Devil’s Metal. I won’t give away too many details because I don’t want to spoil the awe­some­ness that is this story, but I will share some highlights.

First of all, holy fuck Karina Halle is bril­liant. Not only are the char­ac­ters so real and lik­able, espe­cially Dawn, but the plot moves so well I for­got I was read­ing. It felt like a movie being played out in my mind. Vivid and detailed and totally intriguing.

Dawn is such a great char­ac­ter. Strong and deter­mined but also a lit­tle young and impres­sion­able. I like her dynamic with Sage and how their rela­tion­ship grows and changes through­out the book. And the sex? Hoo boy! HOT! Dawn has her typ­i­cal “rock band” expe­ri­ences but still man­ages to keep her head and do her job amognst the young and sexy rock stars. A true feat in my opinion.

The 70’s vibe came through loud and clear and there were great snip­pets of life back then, very authen­tic. The author def­i­nitely did her reasearch. And the rock side of the story was fun! 70’s rock is not really my favorite genre but the depth of knowl­edge about the music, the bands, the feel­ings of that time in his­tory were so real I felt like I was expe­ri­enc­ing the con­certs and back­stage antics for myself.

The hor­ror aspect was really good and mixed in well with the story. There were parts when I was glad all the lights were on and I was safely inside my house. This book will most likely scare your socks off.

Over­all, if you are a fan of EIT you will love this book. It has incred­i­ble depth and the char­ac­ters come to life in such a way you have deep feel­ings for all of them, whether bad or good. The hor­ror quo­tient is high and the plot has enough twists to keep you won­der­ing what will hap­pen next. I highly rec­om­mend it!

5 stars!

Kara says:

So I was one of the edi­tors assigned to this book. As much as I want to rate it, it would be inap­pro­pri­ate and a con­flict of inter­est for me to do so. But those that know me and trust me know that I wouldn’t scam them, so I decided to write a lit­tle review with­out a rat­ing. That way I can still share my thoughts because I really want to.

First thing you should know, if I could rate this book, it would have EASILY got­ten 4 stars, but there’s a good chance I would have given it 5. I adored this book. The char­ac­ters are ridicu­lously well-developed and there are a good num­ber of char­ac­ters here. Some I hated, some I loved, but most of all, they make you feel.

The plot is scary, roman­tic, and mes­mer­iz­ing. I know this term is overused, but this book is utterly unput­down­able. I’m a huge fan of Karina’s writ­ing style. She has a way of get­ting her point across in a beau­ti­ful but easy to under­stand way. The way she writes scenes from scary to sexy will leave you want­ing more.

This book is set in the 70s. And I really think she cap­tured the atmos­phere and the essence of the decade won­der­fully. The boys in the band are swoon­wor­thy, the groupies are ridicu­lous, the sex is hot, the fash­ions are out­ra­geous, and there are men­tions of great music and leg­endary artists. Oh, and drugs. You will truly feel like you are there on tour with the band.

But most of all, you will feel unset­tled and creeped out. After all, at its core this is a hor­ror novel. And a really fun ride at that.

I’m extremely relieved at these early reviews, even if they are of the 1st draft. There were times when I was plow­ing through this book (I think I wrote it in three weeks, but don’t quote me on that!) that I was like “how is this ever going to be any good?” and full of the usual self-doubt. I was wor­ried it sounded too much like another book and when I was done wor­ry­ing about that, I was wor­ried it would never get fin­ished and when I was done wor­ry­ing about that, I was wor­ried it would suck balls. And not good balls, BAD balls. BUT…so far, people’s reac­tions have sur­prised me. These two ladies up there aren’t the only beta read­ers, just the only ones who have left a review (so far), so I’m con­fi­dent now that if you like to be scared (and per­son­ally I don’t think it’s scarier than any EIT book, so wimps rest assured) and you like sexy times and ten­sion and exotic, 6’4″ tat­tooed rock stars and rock n’ roll and the 70’s and some­thing really dif­fer­ent, you’ll like The Devil’s Metal. You may even love it. I know I do :)

Into the Hollow — Teaser #1

Here’s a lit­tle teaser from Into the Hol­low. I won’t be post­ing too many of these and when I do they will be closer to the release date (Octo­ber 23rd) but here’s just a lit­tle some­thing to tide peo­ple over…or make them more anx­ious. Either or.


Into the Hol­low — Exper­i­ment in Ter­ror — #6 — a teaser from Chap­ter Two (UNEDITED)

You’d think I’d be used to that, the unex­plain­able. But when it came to my feel­ings, when I couldn’t fig­ure out what they even were, that’s when I was really scared. That’s when my nerves would clamp up my throat, squeeze my lungs and make me feel that stand­ing under­neath a bare tree was the safest, smartest option for me. I wasn’t in the house, I wasn’t in his car. I was just me. In-between.

Even­tu­ally though, I found my foot­ing. Some per­verse need to choose. I walked out from under the bro­ken canopy and made my way onto the street. There was the car up ahead, parked on the side of the road, fac­ing the other direc­tion, like he had dri­ven past the house first, then turned around at the end. Funny to think that had hap­pened while Ada and I were attempt­ing to be tele­pathic inside my bedroom.

I stepped qui­etly, afraid the sound of my feet would be car­ried off by the chilled breeze and into the house. I knew my par­ents would flip the fuck out if they knew what I was doing.

I kept going.

I wasn’t far from the car when the driver’s door flung open. My insides whirled fever­ishly, my breath halt­ing. In that moment I real­ized he still had that power over me, to make my body react when my mind wanted to turn away, and I hated him for it.

Dex stepped out, almost in a hurry. I had stopped where I was and was just stand­ing on the road, star­ing at him in a hic­cup of time. I only had a few sec­onds to take him in, his black cargo jacket, his messy, wind-tossed hair and beau­ti­fully scruffy face, the flash of emo­tion in his dark eyes, buried under the fur­row of his brow.

Then he was run­ning toward me and for a moment I thought maybe some­thing was wrong and that I should run too. Then I thought maybe some­thing was right and I should run anyway.

Dex ran to me and engulfed me in his arms, hold­ing me tight to him, rais­ing me a few inches above the ground. I was caught so off-guard, I could only let him hold me. My breath was gone, squeezed out from the inten­sity of his hug. I didn’t think I could hug him back even if I wanted to.

He held me like that, my feet dan­gling, his strong arms keep­ing me as close to him as pos­si­ble. His face buried in my neck and his famil­iar smell draped over me like a com­fort­ing blan­ket while his breath tick­led my skin until my hairs stood on end. I decided to ignore my brain for a sec­ond and just enjoyed the sense of being com­pletely embraced.

“Perry,” he mum­bled, his lips graz­ing my throat while he spoke. “Perry…”

He never fin­ished his sen­tence. Instead he even­tu­ally pulled his face away, my skin still hot from his con­tact, and low­ered me to the ground. He kept his hands on my arms, keep­ing me in place, as if he was afraid I’d run away. With his back to the street­light, his face was encased in shad­ows but I could still see his eyes glint­ing, slightly feverish.

I cleared my throat. “Hi.”


The Devil’s Metal — Teaser #5

So the book is cur­rently in my editor’s hands, and to my sur­prise, she’s lov­ing it! (hey, she can be a very picky, hard-assed reader lol — I love you Kara! But I bite my nails when I wait for your opin­ion! LOL)

Been hear­ing back from my beta read­ers too and so far, they love it! Some quotes below that I’ve taken from some emails:

Kass says: Sage. SIGH. New fic­tion love inter­est haha.

I can’t get over how much I loved this book. The char­ac­ters we so.well.done.

The sex scenes were AMAZING. Pretty hot, every­thing I want in a sex scene. Def­i­nitely made me squirm. You sure do know how to write those!

I hope other EIT fans give it a chance. It’s bril­liant :)

A def­i­nite 5-star book. LOVED it :)

Emmy says: Damn. I love your crazy, bril­liant mind. I LOVE THE END! Those last 2 chap­ters.. FANTASTIC. *shouty caps necessary*

The sex scene was some­thing else. Not very sweet at all but they were horny and I can only image some­one like Sage tak­ing the reigns for the first show down. The cock tease part was hella hot!

I LOVE LOVE LOVE how strong Dawn was.

This was 5 stars for sure.  Loved it.

And they are both HUGE EIT fans, so their praise means a lot to me. I gotta say, it’s really, really hard to write your first non-EIT book (I can only imag­ine the pres­sure on JK Rowl­ing for the Casual Vacancy). There’s a lot of pres­sure to write some­thing great, dis­tinc­tive and addic­tive. Some­thing that EIT fans will enjoy but will also attract new fans. I hope I’ve done this here, but regard­less, I had a load of fun.

NOW — The Devi’s Metal teaser #4 (unedited — may change prior to publication)

It hap­pened in the blink of an eye. He lunged across the gap and pushed me down onto the bed by my shoul­ders, his incred­i­ble weight on my body, hips crush­ing into my hips. He pinned my arms above my head. His face was inches from mine, lips curled angrily, wired eyes search­ing my widened ones.

“You say that so eas­ily,” he growled near my lips. “A rough few days. Is that what you think this is? Just a rough few days?”

“N-no,” I said squirm­ing beneath him. I didn’t fear Sage. But I feared men when they had too much to drink.

“I thought you were dif­fer­ent, Dawn. The only one on this tour left with a heart and soul.” His eyes flared with indignation.

“I am dif­fer­ent,” I protested, so con­scious of the prox­im­ity of his mouth to mine. I stopped squirm­ing and let his hands hold my arms to the bed. If he wanted to feel pow­er­ful, I was going to let him. But I was going to get what I wanted too.

“You have no idea what I’ve been through,” he told me. His demeanor soft­ened and his grip on my wrists loos­ened. He still kept his face as close as pos­si­ble, whether to intim­i­date or tease, I wasn’t sure. I did know I wasn’t about to back down.

“I have some idea,” I whis­pered, my eyes vol­ley­ing with his. “But I’d like it if you could tell me the rest.”

“Are you here to make me feel? Is that part of the plan?” he sneered delicately.

I blinked at him. Feel? Feel what?


The Devil’s Metal — Teaser #4

WOO HOO! I am pleased, so fuck­ing pleased, to announce that The Devil’s Metal has been com­pleted (1st draft any­way). It was a fun, hell­ish ride and I’m grate­ful to my friends, fans and beta-readers for encour­ag­ing me to keep going with it. I feel like I’ve been on a hot, smelly tour bus with a bunch of fucked up rock stars for two weeks. yeesh. LET ME OFF!

Now that it’s all done, I can safely say that I don’t think the book can be com­pared to anything…except Almost Famous. And In the Mouth of Mad­ness. And Jennifer’s Body. And The Devil’s Advo­cate. And Final Des­ti­na­tion. And so on. OK, well you’ll have to see for yourselves.

Here’s Teaser #4 — as my beta reader Emmy pointed out, EIT “the­o­rists” might be intrigued (do note, as usual, this is unedited).

Even­tu­ally Jacob noticed some­thing was going on. Or he’d always noticed and had waited for the right time to bring it up. With nor­mal Jacob fla­vor, it hap­pened to be a few min­utes before the show.

“Tell me what’s on your mind, Rusty,” he said dryly as we stood at the side of the stage. He was run­ning a nail file under­neath his nails and flick­ing out the dirt.

“I got a call from Barry today.”


“He said he’d been receiv­ing some let­ters about me.”

“Oh?” he repeated, a bit more interested.

“If I didn’t know bet­ter I’d say that Terri or one of the other Get The Fuck Outs is behind it. It kind of gels with what you said back…well what­ever city that was in. That it was groupie high school.”

His golden eyes remained on his nails. “Oh yes, ain’t that the truth, love.”

“So, that’s going on. I’m mildly freaked out.” I crossed my arms feel­ing a chill.

“I can see that. I don’t blame you. Do you think these girls are…dangerous?” he said the last word like it was laden in silk.

I gave him a weird look. “You tell me! I’ve just learned who they are. You’ve dealt with them longer.”

He exhaled sharply through his nose and finally looked me in the eye. His red hair flamed under the stage lights, giv­ing him a hell­ish aura. “Every­one has the chance to become dan­ger­ous. If the right weather pat­terns are cre­ated, if the right feel­ings are invoked…feelings of injus­tice. Jeal­ousy. Feel­ings of being owed some­thing they believe they have a right to have. To…collect. We all have it in us to become a dan­ger, either to oth­ers or to our­selves. It’s a mat­ter if the right clouds are brew­ing. Cer­tain clouds will cre­ate a storm.”

“And?” I egged him on impa­tiently. “What clouds are brew­ing? Are these groupies dan­ger­ous or not? Do I need to start sleep­ing with a switch­blade under­neath my pillow?”

A slow smile spread across his rough lips. Then he shrugged and turned his atten­tion back to clean­ing his nails. “Couldn’t hurt, could it?”

Oooh, that Jacob! Any­way, I’m doing a give­away on my FB page here: https://www.facebook.com/ExperimentinTerror

Giv­ing a way a pair of Hybrid undies (Medium) and an e-format ARC of The Devil’s Metal! To enter, leave a thought­ful com­ment (just one) on the FB post. I’ll do a draw in a week for one lucky win­ner. Open worldwide.



The Devil’s Metal — Teaser #3

Another snip­pet.

I’m fin­ish­ing up the first draft of the book today. This is excit­ing. Home stretch. I will prob­a­bly do an awe­some give­away on Face­book tomor­row to cel­e­brate this huge achieve­ment when it’s all said and done, so stay tuned.

Here’s the third teaser from The Devil’s Metal. Sage and Dawn’s rela­tion­ship doesn’t exactly get off to the smoothest start. (keep in mind this is unedited).

When I hung up the phone, I spied Sage leav­ing the Astro van with one of his gui­tars in hand. It was black, sleek and sexy, just like the man him­self and his intricately-tattooed fore­arms bulged as he han­dled the musi­cal beast. I shook my head lightly, snap­ping out of my strangely lust­ful daze, and decided to take my chances with him.

“Sage?” I ven­tured care­fully, walk­ing toward him. He had seen me com­ing and seemed to be form­ing excuses in his head already.

“What is it?” he said, barely glanc­ing at me, and walk­ing off toward the back­stage doors lead­ing into the building.

I trailed after him. “How are you feeling?”

The ques­tion sur­prised him and he slowed down a bit. “How am I feeling?”

“You seemed a bit snap­pish at break­fast,” I said. “Last night too. Thought maybe you have an object lodged up your ass or some­thing. Some­thing a doc­tor should remove.”

I couldn’t believe I just said that. Nei­ther could Sage. He didn’t just slow down, he stopped and gave me an incred­u­lous look. “Excuse me?”

Way to go Dawn, I thought. As if he couldn’t hate you more.

I licked my lips and tried to smile. “Well, do you?”

He seemed speech­less. This prob­a­bly wasn’t good.

But then, he did some­thing I hadn’t expected.

He smiled.

And then he laughed. It was short and brief, but gen­uine and made the dim­ples stand out in his scruffy cheeks. It was the best sound I’d heard all year.

Then he shook his head and con­tin­ued walk­ing off toward the audi­to­rium, strum­ming his gui­tar as he went, leav­ing me with a view of a tight ass in tight black pants.

What I had meant to do was ask if him when a good time to inter­view him would be. I totally messed that one up.

I watched him go for a few beats, then I decided to give up on him for the day and try again tomor­row. Tonight I was going to con­cen­trate on the music and just the music. If the band wanted to play hard to get with inter­views, fine (and if I was going to bun­gle up some inter­views with my big, fat mouth, fine). That didn’t mean I wasn’t going to observe and then com­pose the best damn live show review. Ever.

I shuf­fled back to the bus, gath­ered my purse, my notepad, my tape recorder and the venue’s All Access pass, and went to go catch Hybrid’s soundcheck.


The Devil’s Metal Teaser #2

Here’s another teaser from the upcom­ing The Devil’s Metal — to be released end of September.

And yeah, Black Sab­bath rules.


But first some infor­ma­tion for the newcomers:

The Devils’s Metal is a new adult hor­ror romance. What’s new adult? It’s a new genre that deals with 20-somethings. In col­lege, post college…those years. Same per­sonal fla­vor as YA, but with much more mature themes. The Devil’s Metal is part one of a two book series, the sequel com­ing out next year — The Devil’s Reprise. Also a chance for a Sage POV in the mid­dle because boy does this man have a wicked story to tell.

Blurb: It’s the sum­mer of 1974 and 21-year old Dawn Emer­son has only three things she wants to do: com­pete one last time in the Ellens­burg Rodeo, win back her ex-boyfriend Ryan, and become the best damn music jour­nal­ist at Cen­tral Wash­ing­ton Uni­ver­sity. But all her plans are left in the dust when she’s con­tacted by Creem mag­a­zine to go on the road with one of her favorite groups, the up-and-coming metal band, Hybrid.

At first the assign­ment reads like a dream come true. Not only will Dawn land some much-needed cred­i­bil­ity as a female music jour­nal­ist, but she’ll finally get to expe­ri­ence life from the other side of the stage, and maybe crack the drunken, enig­matic code that is gui­tarist Sage Knightly. Instead, Dawn finds her­self on an aging tour bus filled with ego-maniacs, band pol­i­tics and a whole lot of sex, drugs and rock n’ roll. When mon­sters start show­ing up in dress­ing rooms and some of Sage’s groupies become increas­ingly strange and dan­ger­ous, Dawn dis­cov­ers the band is not only going places – they’re going straight to Hell.

And Dawn has a back­stage pass.

Teaser (UNEDITED — may change prior to publication):

But try as I did, I could not keep my eyes off of Sage Knightly. I just couldn’t help myself. See­ing this man on stage was like watch­ing a lion prowl along the crest of his king­dom. He com­manded respect even when he was seated on his chair with only an acoustic gui­tar at his fin­gers and when he got up, the Mex­i­can tex­tile strap strain­ing against his neck, every eye in the crowd fol­lowed his every stride. Nor­mally Sage was a back­ground fig­ure, qui­etly com­man­deer­ing the direc­tion of the show, but tonight, with Rob­bie sub­dued, Sage became the star. With­out a doubt you knew this was the man who made Hybrid what they were.

I watched as his long fin­gers expertly picked along to com­plex and haunt­ing solos. I watched the inten­sity in his eyes as they stared off into the crowd, call­ing on his tal­ent from some­where. I watched his tall frame, his large, rounded shoul­ders muscling into the heav­ier chords. I watched his flip-flopped feet tap­ping to some inter­nal metronome.

And I watched a faint shiver roll through his body. His eyes snapped away from watch­ing Rob­bie belt out “She Could Have Loved Me” and his vision made a bee­line to the front of the stage. There, squished up along the bar­ri­cade, was a strangely famil­iar look­ing woman: Long white hair, pale face, fever­ishly gleam­ing eyes. As beau­ti­ful as she was, she gave off an immense feel­ing of dread that gripped my bones. Sage watched her as if hyp­no­tized. The woman smiled up at him.

And in that smile I saw fangs. Her face trans­formed dis­turbingly with black holes for eyes, an elon­gated, wrin­kled face of yellow-white, a wide gap­ing hole for a mouth, teeth pro­trud­ing. A long tongue slide out, crawl­ing with quiv­er­ing insects. It licked its absence of lips, curled del­i­cately along peel­ing skin. I heard noises deep inside my head, the buzzing of bees, painful wails, hor­rific chants that built up to immea­sur­able vol­umes. I felt hor­ror, a ter­ror so com­plete that I had one thought: I was going to die there on the stage. I was going to lose my soul.

I was going to Hell.