Friday, November 8, 2013

CONTEST: Zombies, Romance, and the Chance to Win a Free Book!

Today I’m excited to announce the release of my short story, PIED PIPER OF THE DEAD, in the zombie romance anthology Still Hungry for Your Love.

PIED PIPER OF THE DEAD is an updated retelling of the Pied Piper of Hamelin, with Steampunk elements and zombies, set in a post-apocalyptic version of my hometown. No, no characters (zombie or otherwise) are based off of people I know, although the main characters are inspired by a fictional TV duo. And -- the best part -- my story is but one of 15 stories in this anthology. That’s a whole lot of zombie love. We’ve got traditional zombies, non-traditional zombies, zombies of various speeds, zombies who can be controlled by sound, zombies from around the globe. We’ve even got lesbian voodoo zombies, and I don’t know about you, but I think that’s pretty awesome.

October was a busy month for me, and November isn’t slowing down any. I’ve been so busy I haven’t had the chance to celebrate! So tonight, I want to celebrate by giving away a free digital copy of Still Hungry for Your Love to one lucky commenter!

What’s the catch? There’s always a catch. Fortunately, this one requires no fine print or legal disclaimers. To be entered into the drawing for a FREE digital copy of Still Hungry for Your Love, just do 2 EASY things:
  1. Announce this contest on some form of social media, be it Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, your personal blog, YouTube (if you want to get really creative, I guess), or what have you. Like I said, it’s been a busy, busy month and I can’t get the word out all on my own :)
  2. Comment on this blog with the link to that announcement AND tell me your favorite zombie book or film.
Simple, huh? And you can even enhance your odds of winning. For every type of social media you spread the announcement on, you’ll get an extra entry in the randomizer. So, if you Facebook and Tweet the announcement and place both links in the comments, your name will be entered twice. Make sense? If more than 50 people enter the contest, I’ll even throw in some additional zombie-themed goodies, like a copy of my favorite zombie movie, Shaun of the Dead.

What are you waiting for? Start spreading the word and we’ll kick this celebration off right!

Contest is open until Monday, November 11, 2013 at 11:59 p.m. CST. Winner(s) will be selected randomly. I have one request - if you win, please leave an honest review of the anthology on Amazon or Goodreads. Honest reviews help authors, and we really, really appreciate it. GOOD LUCK!!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Ghosts Around the World (Hurray!)

By Eilis Flynn
Everyone’s got a personal ghost story, whether they’re believers or not. It’s that something that can’t be explained, something that no matter how much rationalization goes into it, remains a bit—off, somehow, sending shivers down your spine. And it’s not just a few people here and there, either. Every culture has a belief about ghosts.

With my friend and workshop copresenter Jacquie Rogers, I present a series of workshops looking at familiar myths and legends and how they change as we look at them around the world. I was an anthropology major and write fantasy and paranormal, so this works well into what I’m interested in. But as I was doing the research on ghost stories around the world, I realized something interesting. Most of the time I’ve been doing the research, it’s been more or less an academic interest I’ve had, research for the sake of research. But in the case of ghosts, there’s more than a smidgen of belief. No matter how rationally I look at ghosts, no matter how dry and academic, I know there’s something there that can’t be explained away.

Whether it’s a message from an ancestor or an odd vibe in a place that turns out to have had a dark past, ghosts are everywhere, in more ways than you can imagine. Well, maybe you can imagine it. Jacquie and I have gone through many forms of mythological creatures in our journeys along the Silk Road, and it wasn’t that surprising that sometimes we wouldn’t be able to find a true example, depending on the creature we were hunting. We found that stories about vampires are scarce in China (the hopping vampire was the best of it there), while werewolves couldn’t be found in native form a lot outside of Europe, faeries were thin on the ground also out of Europe (but then there were plenty under other names), and dragons could be found in variations, but ghosts … ghost mythologies can be found anywhere and everywhere. Where there is death, there is a ghost myth. There are feetless ghosts in Japan and hungry ghosts in China (complete with a festival to go with it), a friendy ghost named Casper in American kiddie entertainment, séances in any number of variations in every culture that has a ghost legend in order for the living to speak with the dead.

Intrigued by ghosts? Of course you are. We all are. Some of us are terrified, but we are still drawn by them. Before there were myths and legends about dragons and faeries or werewolves or vampires, there were stories about ghosts. As I mentioned before, ghosts—or more precisely, stories about and the presence of deceased ancestors or others no longer on this mortal plain—have been around since humankind itself has been around. As long as there have been people of one kind or another, people who have experienced death among their kind or against another, there have been ghost stories.

It’s not hard to say why ghost stories have been around for so long. Death and speculation about what lies beyond death have been the source of fascination for humans from the time that humans started to develop their own cultures. Was it that odd feeling of being watched when there was no one else around, or some sign that a recently deceased relative was somehow, inconceivably, sending a message from beyond? While there are many variations of how ghosts are perceived, one thing remains the same, whether as a source of comfort or terror: They are with us, unseen. Sometimes they indicate their presence, sometimes they are mute, sometimes the manifestation is human in form, sometimes when something is simply moved—the variations seem endless. As long as mankind has been sentient, there has been a ghost story waiting to be told at the fireside.

Come along and check out what kind of ghosts you can find all over the world. Let us take you on a walk around the world to examine those myths, and see how they shift, change, and evolve as we travel. We’ll be looking at ghosts all around the world at Savvy Authors (, starting on Monday, November 11, to November 24. Come join us and find out what kind of ghost story spooks you in particular!

Eilis Flynn and Jacquie Rogers can be found haunting their own websites at and