13 Morbid Tales is Available Now!

Lookie what I've got!

Lookie what I’ve got!

Today is the official release day for 13 Morbid Tales! Why now? I needed my 13 creepy little tales to be available to readers by Halloween: werewolves in mailboxes, ghosts in e-readers.

This has been a lot of years coming. Fun fact: by my estimation, the oldest story in the collection was actually written 13 years ago. Don’t worry. It’s been edited to reflect my skills today, not my skills back then.  *smile and wink*

Some of you may already know that the links went live a couple of days early. The really cool thing about that is that for the last two days leading up to the “official” release, I have seen an outpouring of love and support so strong I completely forgot about my anxiety. Those who know me know that’s no easy feat. I cannot thank you all enough. Really. It’s not possible. Just know I’m feelin’ the love for all of you!

At this point you’re probably wondering, When’s this chick gonna stop being sappy and get to the book blurb and the links where I can buy this bit of awesomeness, already? At least, I hope you are. So here goes:

The creatures living within these pages come from the imagination: a place where a sentient life support machine contemplates its own existence, a budding slasher villain comes into her own, and a demonic agent makes another deal.

And they’ve brought friends.

Werewolves, ghosts, and human monsters alike guide the reader down highways of dark fancy, exploring what goes bump—and what stays eerily silent—in the night.

Available Now!

Get 13 Morbid Tales for Kindle

Get a paperback copy of 13 Morbid Tales from Amazon

Get a paperback copy of 13 Morbid Tales from the CreateSpace eStore

#13MorbidTales

Edited by Reggie Lutz.

Cover Art by Janell R. Colburn.

Love Sonnet for the Monsters

So…it all started when I set out to write a proper Shakespearean sonnet. I wanted to write a love sonnet to the monsters. I’m thinking of using this as a forward or afterward or something-or-other in 13 Morbid Tales, but for now, let’s just celebrate the season…

Love Sonnet for the Monsters

By Devon L. Miller ©2013

When dark descends the mighty werewolves howl.

And specters float from their crypts in the night.

Take care and listen for the demon’s growl

As vampires perform an ancient blood rite.

One dares not step into the mummy’s tomb,

And should not walk on zombies’ vacant graves.

For these things surely can mean a man’s doom,

No solace found at the mouths of bats’ caves.

A letter in blood sent by raven’s claw,

Received with shaking hands and bated breath,

Only to be snatched by the Hell hound’s jaw,

Or the cold grip of the one we call Death.

To some, a terrible nightmare it seems,

To me, it makes for most romantic dreams.

Hungry Like the Wolf

I wrote this story many moons ago—how many moons, you ask. Well, I originally posted it on MySpace, so yeah…moons. I deleted it from MySpace when I decided to use it in 13 Morbid Tales but since my work has evolved, I no longer intend to use it in the final product. Does that mean I don’t think it’s a good story anymore? Absolutely not. This is why I’m sharing it with you all now. Hope you enjoy! And again, Happy Halloween! 

Hungry Like the Wolf

            She walked down the wooded path with him as he stumbled, the smell of alcohol on his breath. Darkness settled in slowly, but settled in nonetheless. She had begged him to take her home, but he was in no condition to drive. “No matter,” she had said with a shrug and a toss of her long, black tresses. It wasn’t that far into town and so she had insisted that she would walk. He had insisted that he would come along. Her honor needed protecting, after all. Yet the thought had occurred to her that protecting her honor was the last thing on his mind. She didn’t like him when he was like this, and she realized it especially in this moment. The thought that things would be so much safer if she was by herself ran through her head as the hairs on the back of her neck not only stood on end, but seemed frozen that way.

            Her friends had warned her not to go out with him that night. They told her that she didn’t know what she was getting into, but she was having none of it. She had looked forward to the harvest party all summer and no power in the heavens was going to stop her from going. I’m in control of the situation, she had told herself, and truly she had believed it. If things started getting a little uncomfortable, she’d leave.

            But now, she began to rethink all of her choices. The discomfort was growing and her legs itched with the need to run. It had rained earlier that day, and the mist crept up from the ground. Sonofabitch! She thought to herself as his hand, that had only moments before, while still at the party, been protectively resting on her shoulder, slid down to cup her breast. This is the way scenes in bad horror movies start. Lately, she had been realizing that bad horror movies weren’t always wrong. She moved his hand away. This was no time for too much liquor, raging hormones, and desire, to mix.

            He moved his hand back and she pulled away from his grasp. “Come on, Jim. I told you, not tonight. I want to go home.”

            The hand that hadn’t been grabbing at her breast still clasped a bottle of Jack Daniel’s. He clumsily brought it to his lips and took a bigger drink than necessary. “So that’s why you decided to come walking all slinkily down the path by yourself. No, you didn’t want me to follow you at all,” he said, his voice thick with sarcastic frustration as he tore a hand through his shaggy, blond hair.

            Her eyes flashed, even in the dark. “I’m walking because you continued to get drunk and couldn’t take me home! There’s no sense in anyone getting killed…” She was cut off by him kissing her hard on the mouth. When she managed to shove him away, she noticed that in his aggression, he had split her lip. She licked it and tasted blood. The situation was getting worse.

            It seemed that he had tasted it too. “Baby, I’m sorry,” he said, and it seemed for a moment that she’d be free. No such luck. “But we both know you can handle a little pain, right,” he continued. He walked back toward her with more motion in his hips than any man should ever have. She could tell that he wasn’t through with these advances by far, and they were alone.

            This can’t happen, she thought. He has to let me go. She had always been so comfortable in the woods, even at night. But she knew if this happened, the trees would know. They’d see, and her place of solace would become her place of shame.

            He advanced toward her and knocked her backwards. She winced against the pain as her head hit the ground hard.

            “No!” she cried as he settled himself on top of her.

            “I don’t fuckin’ get you, Amber!” he said, his voice rough and hoarse. He pinned her shoulders down and kissed her neck in a way that was more a bite than a kiss. “One minute we’re hot and heavy and the next you’re acting like some shy virgin!” He pulled his shirt over his head. “We both know that virgin shit isn’t true. Now come on; let me feel those nails down my back again.”

            My God! He’s going to get his way, she thought as she cried against the pain of the splitting flesh as her nails grew, extending into claws.

            Then the clouds parted, and she saw the full moon in all its glory. She looked into eyes that were growing wide with shock and fear. “I begged you to take me home!” she sobbed. But the words came in growls and the tears were lost in the sleek, black fur growing on her face.

            And this time, the blood she licked from her lips was his.

A Woman’s Home is Her Fairy Tale Castle

My grandfather made me this castle/dollhouse because "every princess should have a castle." Miss you, Gpa!

My grandfather made me this castle/dollhouse because “every princess should have a castle.” Miss you, Gpa!

A new antique shop just opened a couple of miles from our rental home and I talked my reluctant husband into coming to check it out with me. We are looking to finally purchase a home of our own, and while my husband has been desperately trying to curb my spending (which I think I’m doing pretty darn well with, thankyouverymuch), I keep thinking—merely thinking—of things I want to buy for the house once we get it. Point being, antique stores are dangerous territory right now.

“I want one of these in the worst way,” I said, caressing the antique spinning wheel.

“A spinning wheel? What in the world would you do with that?”

Not knowing the first thing about spinning, I replied, “Put it in our living room once we get a house.”

“Okay,” he said, doing his best to keep the mild exasperation out of his voice. He is far too practical not to have rolled his eyes while my own glittered at the sight of the spinning wheel I haven’t the first clue how to use. “Why do you want to put an antique spinning wheel in our living room?”

I grinned. This was the question I so hoped he’d ask. “So I can tell people it’s the one on which Sleeping Beauty pricked her finger.”

I’m sure he wanted to laugh, but it was a sigh that came out. He’s heard numerous times about how when I was a little girl I wanted four white mice (because “four white mice are easily four white horses”); and he still has the wolfman mask from when I talked him into going as the Big Bad Werewolf for Halloween so I could go as Little Dead Riding Hood.

The Big Bad Werewolf and Little Dead Riding Hood

The Big Bad Werewolf and Little Dead Riding Hood

He rolled his eyes and sweetly said, “When we have a house, sweetie,” and started walking away, presumably to get me as far away from the spinning wheel as possible.

He shook his head as I informed him that the spinning wheel would make a perfectly acceptable birthday or Christmas present, but I detected a hint of an amused smile too.

I think he’s finally come to terms with the fact that he married a wanna-be fairy tale princess.

Book Review: The Werewolf’s Guide to Life: A Manual for the Newly Bitten

The Werewolf’s Guide to Life: A Manual for the Newly Bitten by Ritch Duncan and Bob Powers, with illustrations by Emily Flake, is easily the most fun book I’ve read in quite some time.  Written in the same spirit as The Zombie Survival Guide: Complete Protection from the Living Dead (by Max Brooks), The Werewolf’s Guide to Life is a tongue in cheek manual to help new lycanthropes (werewolves) survive their first few moons (transformations).

Not lacking in dark humor, the book addresses topics such as how lycanthropes should lock themselves away during their moons, what they should do if they get loose and turn or kill someone (because, let’s face it, it’s going to happen), and why lycanthrope suicide is not an option.

If you’ve ever sat and wondered, “Well what if…” when it comes to the life of a werewolf, this book will answer every question you’ve ever had and a few you probably didn’t in a way that will make you howl with laughter.

Yes, I know that last line was cheesy.  Feel free to have some wine with it.

While thoughtfully and thoroughly written, The Werewolf’s Guide to Life is a quick and easy read, perfect for your daily lunch breaks or a road trip (as the passenger, of course!).  I even enjoyed a few chapters before bed!

If you’ve read or are reading this book, feel free to add to this review in the comments.

Happy reading!