Publisher’s Note: High School Revisited

Remember high school? Of course you do. Maybe it was the best time of your life. Maybe, and, frankly, more likely, it was an awkward time with some high points and a whole lot of embarrassing moments. Or maybe you hated every minute of it and couldn’t wait to graduate.

For me, it was a mix of the first two. I loved high school. I was a type-A overachiever (shocking, I know), involved in all sorts of extracurricular activities. Not sports so much, although I did run track my junior year until an injury sidelined me permanently. It was probably for the best though. Sports was never my thing.

I was heavily involved in music, however, and academics. And I had plenty of embarrassing moments.

For example, I’ll never forget the football game where the marching band took to the ice-covered field just as the wind began to pick up. When a particularly strong gust took hold of one of the sousaphones, it took down that player and the rest followed like dominoes. It was a thing to behold. Or, I hear it was. I wouldn’t know. I was lying mortified on a sheet of ice under my sousaphone.

But now imagine now that you’re not a regular kid. What if you grew up in a place very different from the average American town? And you find separated from the only family you really know and into a high school where you know you don’t fit in.

Welcome to Kristine Grayson’s newest series: young adult urban fantasies unlike anything else in the genre.
Brittany Bends ebook cover webCrystal Caves ebook cover webTiffany Tumbles ebook cover web

This three-book series, called the Interim Fates, incorporates humor, magic, misunderstandings, and the central theme of finding one’s own identity—the core of the high school experience.

The three books—Tiffany Tumbles, Crystal Caves and Brittany Bends—tell the story of the Interim Fates—Tiffany, Crystal and Brittany—who were first introduced in Grayson’s bestselling Fates Trilogy (Simply Irresistible, Absolutely Captivated, Totally Spellbound). The three teenagers are now mortal and struggling to fit into a world without magic—and without each other.

The Interim Fates series has the long-distance relationships of Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (only with more humor), the attitude of Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen (but in a magical universe), and the extreme outsider viewpoint of Mean Girls (with less viciousness) all rolled into one.

The books will be released one per month, beginning in August with Tiffany Tumbles.

But both Tiffany Tumbles and Crystal Caves are available for preorder now in ebook on Amazon, Kobo and iBooks. And Brittany Bends will be available in preorder as well by the end of the week.

The Fates Trilogy (and Completely Smitten) will also be getting some attention next week, as we redesign the covers to bring them more in line with the new look you see with the Interim Fates. Stay tuned for those new covers.

I’m thrilled to share this new series with you. Like the best young adult books, the Interim Fates trilogy will appeal to readers of all ages.

After all, given a little bit of time, revisiting those embarrassing high school experiences can be downright amusing.

Or maybe that’s just me. Perhaps I got knocked in the head too hard by a sousaphone.

Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer.

This Reading Comes Highly Recommended

Since long before reviewing a product was as simple as typing in a few words on our phones, word-of-mouth has been considered the absolute best way to sell something. Think about it: when someone you trust and respect suggests you try something, you seriously consider doing just that. Food, travel, cleaning products, shoes, books…you name it.

Look at the success of Instant Pot. I see posts all over Facebook from friends singing the versatile cooking device’s praises. I’ve even considered buying one even though I have a similar brand sitting in my cabinet as-yet unused (I bought it two years ago). Yet, every time I see the cult of Instant Pot posting, I think it’s something I might need. (Don’t worry, sanity prevails…but I do need to try that thing I already have…)

When it comes to books, word-of-mouth has great power, too. Oprah’s Book Club makes books an overnight success. Book reviewers helped guide readers’ and book store purchases. And one of the best tools in the business is the Recommended Reading List.

I love seeing WMG stories on such reading lists. And when the list is compiled by a science fiction and fantasy magazine with 24 years of history, it’s especially humbling.

Enter the Tangent Online 2017 Recommended Reading List, which features ten Fiction River stories, from six different volumes. The stories are ranked as follows, according to Tangent Online: “As is our custom, there are four sections to each length category. Those making the list in the short story, novelette, and novella lengths but having no stars, and those with either one, two, or three stars, according to how well the reviewer or reviewers valued a particular story.”

You can see the entire list here, but the Fiction River stories and their respective categories are:

Short Stories
“The Four Thirty-Five” by Annie Reed (Fiction River: Editor’s Choice)
“Dust to Dust” by Annie Reed (Fiction River: Pulse Pounders: Adrenaline)
“Legs” by Steven Mohan, Jr. (Fiction River: Feel the Fear)
“The Sound of Salvation” by Leslie Claire Walker (Fiction River: No Humans Allowed)
“We, the Ocean” by Alexandra Brandt (Fiction River: No Humans Allowed)
“The Legend of Anlahn” by Eric Kent Edstrom (Fiction River: No Humans Allowed)

Short Stories One Star
“Killing Spree” by Brigid Collins (Fiction River: Tavern Tales)
“The Glass Girl” by Leah Cutter (Fiction River: Editor’s Choice)

Short Stories Two Stars
“The Hot Eagle Roadhouse” by Chuck Heintzelman (Fiction River: Tavern Tales)
“Trees” by Diana Benedict (Fiction River: Editor’s Choice)
“Bad Dates Bite” by Kerrie L. Hughes (Fiction River: Editor’s Choice)

Short Stories Three Stars
“The First Ingredient” by Eric Kent Edstrom (Fiction River: Tavern Tales)
“A Ballad of Osmosis McGuire” by Travis Heermann (Fiction River: Superpowers)

So, if you missed any of these stories, or their respective volumes, be sure to check them out. And you don’t just need to take my recommendation on that <grin>.

Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer.

Ace High

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Publisher’s Note: Back-to-school Reading List

Tiffany Tumbles ebook cover web 284This is it. The last week of summer before school starts. At least, it is for us here on the Oregon Coast. Next week, my daughter starts first grade. I can’t believe I just typed that.

But denial or not, back-to-school is here. And that means shopping for school supplies and setting schedules and basically getting back to some semblance of a “normal” routine.

So, to get you back into that school-year mindset, here is some suggested reading:

The Interim Fates Trilogy by Kristine Grayson

The three books— Tiffany Tumbles, Crystal Caves and Brittany Bends—tell the story of the Interim Fates—Tiffany, Crystal and Brittany—who were first introduced in Grayson’s bestselling Fates Trilogy (Simply Irresistible, Absolutely Captivated, Totally Spellbound). The three teenagers are now mortal and struggling to fit into a world without magic—and without each other.

Crystal Caves ebook cover web 284The Interim Fates series has the long-distance relationships of Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (only with more humor), the attitude of Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen (but in a magical universe), and the extreme outsider viewpoint of Mean Girls (with less viciousness) all rolled into one.

These books incorporate humor, magic, misunderstandings, and the central theme of finding one’s own identity—the core of the high school experience.

Bleed Through by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

I won’t lie. This is a powerful, heart-wrenching book. It opens after a devastating school shooting. But if you haven’t read it, I highly encourage you to. It’s one of the most thought-provoking books I’ve ever read.

Here’s the synopsis:

Brittany Bends ebook cover web 284Former journalist turned journalism teacher Larissa Johanssen moved back to her hometown to escape the violence she once covered on a national stage. Until that violence strikes her high school, her students.

Now, she must help her students deal with the type of coverage that drove her to the breaking point. And she must revisit parts of her past she thought long buried—and separate truth from fiction to finally begin to heal.

Bleed Through ebook cover web 285So, whether you’re in the mood for some young adult urban fantasy or a powerful literary experience, WMG has you covered.

Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer.

Publisher’s Note: Highway to Hell

As some of you already know, I’m moving to Eugene, Oregon, this month. Yes, I’ll still be working at WMG. But I’m going to be hard to contact for the rest of this month because of the move.

And this is why: The movers recently loaded the rest of my earthly possessions into a truck and transported them to our new home in Eugene. Movers possess a rare magic, I assure you. Sadly, that magic didn’t extend to my car ride. That part was hell.

The Destroyer ebook cover web 284Why?

Because I transported five cats to their new home. Yes, five. It’s a long story. Well, it’s actually three long stories. But the point is, have you ever taken a cat on a long drive (keeping in mind that “long” to a cat means anything longer than, say, the driveway)?

Yup, that’s what I did. And that’s why I’m in hell. I mean, two hours of caterwauling? Not to mention whatever noises the cats were making. That was the part of the trip I’d been dreading for months.

I was prepared, of course. I’m always prepared. Or, at least, I try to be. I got pheromone diffusers for the new house, pheromone spray for the cat carriers and a pheromone collar for the cat least likely to tolerate the trip. Okay, I’ll be honest, he needs the collar all the time. He’s pretty high strung.

I know Kristine Kathryn Rusch and Dean Wesley Smith sympathize. They’re cat people, too, as you might realize.

Kris even has enough cat fiction stories to make up at least a couple of collections.

So, let’s make a deal. You read cat fiction. And I’ll try to turn my cat-crazy drive into a distant memory.

Five Feline Fancies ebook cover web 285Here are some good places to start:
Five Feline Fancies
“Star” (which you can read for free on Kris’ website next week, by the way)
“The Destroyer”
“Strays”
“Familiar Territory”

Some of these are pure mystery. Some mix mystery and fantasy. And one, Destiny (which is included in Five Feline Fancies), is a prequel to an entire series (The Fey).

If you’re not a cat-lover, well, not to worry. She writes about dogs, too. But that’s a topic for another week.

Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer.