Out with the old and in with the new!

The end of the year is the time when many reflect on what happened and what they would like to see themselves doing in the coming year. Good. Do that… as long as you learn lessons from what you’ve experienced and remain accountable to those future goals. Don’t spend a lot of effort wishing the year could have been different – I have recently had a fact reinforced to me, one that I thought I already knew, but never really understood to the magnitude I do now until about three days ago: things happen for a reason.

Really.

They do.

If you have the presence of mind to see the path whatever that “thing” happening in your life took to get you where you are, you will be amazed. That’s not to say you shouldn’t put in effort or you shouldn’t strive for something that feels out of reach. You should. But when you don’t get exactly what you want (and you won’t, not all the time) wait a beat and see what else might be coming. There’s a reason you didn’t get or do that specific thing at that specific moment. Wait for it. It may still be coming to you – or something else – and it will get there EXACTLY when its supposed to.

This year has been a whirlwind for me – so many things happened that I didn’t see coming… so many things were supposed to come to fruition that did not. But guess what? The way I see it, 2023 is going to have all of those things that I was waiting for in 2022 AND MORE, and folks, THAT is going to be flipping amazing!

Get ready for these individual titles in 2023:

Plus another sumthin’ sumthin’ or two towards the end of the year that I’m gonna just stay quiet about right now 🙂

You’ll also find these releases coming out this year with a contribution from lil ole me (so far!):

I’ll be speaking at some places, like the Final Girls Conference out of Berlin, Scares that Care, and ConTinual. And I will be reprising my role as Horror Track Programming Director at MultiverseCon!

Also, my movie will be done! I can’t wait to check out the road this takes me on! I can’t help but share the trailer again:

Good stuff next year, even if there were some lefts that should have been rights along the way this year. Some of the lefts left me frustrated. But ALL of the rights left me elated!

My to do list next year has three new things on it that I never thought I’d write down, and I am up for the challenge. The important question for you to ask yourself about your own new year list is, ‘Are you?

And since I mentioned sumthin’ sumthin’, here’s some Maxwell to close out the year:

Happy New Year!!

Until next time…

L. Marie

So, this is Christmas…

Snow on the ground.  Hot chocolate in steaming mugs.  Christmas lights twinkling on the tree.  Pick your song and cue the music (“Baby, it’s cold outside,”, “Chestnuts roasting on an open fire,”), and sway… don’t forget to sway.  This scenario is as familiar as they come.  It represents the making of memories, the ones you call upon throughout the year to bring you joy, a sense of belonging, and love.  It is also the default scene for many Christmas horror movies and those of us who like that kind of thing get nostalgic just thinking of cold winter nights with a good slasher film on the TV.  Ah, the holidays.

If you’re looking for a good (and that’s a relative term, mind you) Christmas horror movie, check this list out.  It goes beyond Gremlins, A Christmas Carol (because… ghosts), and The Night Before Christmas, folks – they are must-see Christmas horror movies in their own right, but you knew that already.  So settle in, pour yourself a cup of hot chocolate, and pull the covers around you real tight… because everyone knows that the covers hide you from what’s lurking in the shadows, the thing waiting in the shadowy place just beyond the flickering lights on your Christmas tree… right?

Black Christmas – Don’t mess with girls in their sorority house… period.  The 1974 original stars Margot Kidder pre-Superman fame and is a slasher movie through and through.  Halloween may have put slasher movies on the map, but Black Christmas is the precursor in the genre.  Alert – there was a remake made in 2019.  There was also one made in 2006.  Compare and contrast, if you dare!

Silent Night, Deadly Night – The beginning of a franchise, Silent Night, Deadly Night might be the most recognizable title in the Christmas slasher genre.  A boy, traumatized at a young age, is triggered later in life to reenact his parents’ gruesome murders.  And then the bleeding commences. 

Krampus – Don’t believe in the spirit of Christmas?  You’d better get yourself in gear before Krampus comes to visit.  The antithesis of Santa Claus, Krampus punishes those who misbehave in the most terrifying of ways.  Kind of sheds new light on the lyrics of “Santa Claus is Coming to Town”, doesn’t it?

Being a little spooked inside the confines of one’s own home is not relegated Halloween – stories of home invasions frightening us out of our sleep and hallucinations of flying animals attest to that (you know, ‘Twas the… I know you know).  So, give in.  Add a little Christmas fear with your Christmas cheer!

My gift to you…

I have never written a Christmas horror short story before… until now! Thanks to the folks at Snarled, this little beauty was animated for their Something Scary YouTube Channel. Check it out if you dare!

Give yourself a gift!

Treat yourself to some L. Marie Wood. There’s a scare out there for everyone… and a little romance too! Grab an ebook for your Kindle just in time for the holidays! Happy holidays, folks!

Until next time,

L. Marie

Spooky Season

October is a very cool month for us horror writers. It’s the month when a lot of people are interested in the same things we are every other day of the year – creepy movies, things that go bump in the night, scary stories by candlelight… you know, stuff like that. It’s the time when liking horror movies is cool rather than cause for side eye, and cosplay is a shared experience rather than something to gawk it. For those of us who live and breathe this kind of stuff on a daily basis, know that we welcome you, part time horror folks! We enjoy giving movie suggestions and sharing the horror titles on our ‘to be read’ lists. We love helping you put together the perfect costume for the party you are going to. Some of us know where you can get black lipstick that will come off without having to scrub your lips raw. Many of us know who makes the best pumpkin cheesecake in our respective towns.

Welcome, friends! 🙂 We’re happy to have you.

Every October I embark on a 31 Days of Horror Movies challenge and I absolutely adore the journey. This October I have watched some really cool movies, such as Creep, Old People, and Incantation. Follow me on FB (www.facebook.com/LMarieWood) or Twitter (@LMarieWood1) to join the fun. Any time I watch a movie I like, I post about it – it’s the film theory geek in me, I can’t help it. So, follow me and join in the discussion.

Cool things are happening right now:

  • My screenplay, Low Budget, won a couple of film festivals this month! I am so honored. What started as a little idea in the back of my mind has turned into something that has touched people enough to consider it for an award… and then it actually WON! WOWZA! The tagline: Territory is important, as a film crew racing against time finds out when they get caught in the crossfire of the undead. It’s a fun story!
  • I am literally the doctor of scary things. I successfully defended my dissertation and have earned a PhD in Creative Writing. You may have to put up with some doctor jokes – I mean, most likely yes, this will happen. WOOHOO!
  • Under Her Skin, the anthology where my poem “Beautiful” is housed, won First Place in Bookfest Book Awards! HOLY COW!!!
  • The crowfunding effort for Blackened Roots: An Anthology of the Undead came out this month. I am honored to be on the TOC with such greats as Sheree Renee Thomas, Eden Royce, Steve Van Patten, and more. If you want to contribute to this amazing publishing project, check it out here!

I am waiting with bated breath for the third novel in The Realm Trilogy to hit the stores. It is bittersweet to wrap up this story, but I did so with respect for the the journey… and what a heck of a run it has been! Accursed is due out in the middle of Dec. Preorder today!

My first mystery novel is hot on Accursed’s heels (that’s just how it goes sometimes!). Mars, The Band Man, and Sara Sue is available in Dec – stay tuned for more on this one!

  • Perhaps the coolest of them all hasn’t happened just yet. The trailer for my first short film, 271 Raeburn Avenue, is scheduled to drop on Halloween!!!

YO!!!!

That is freaking awesome for a horror lover like me! Follow me on FB and/or Twitter so you don’t miss it! For now, here is the boss poster:

We launched a new horror class at the Speculative Fiction Academy this month, adding to our pretty robust offering in the genre. It’s called Religion and Horror and if you ever wanted to figure out how to make that subgenre work, this class is a must see. Check it out!

That’s all I have, folks, but before I go, allow me to make this Public Service Announcement: Award season is upon us and I have a lot (and I do mean A LOT) of goodies that are eligible this year. If you are so inclined, please take a look at the list and do your thing! If you saw the list before, I have added two new pieces to it, so give it another look.

And now I leave you with the great Screaming Jay Hawkins, because why not?

Happy Halloween!

Until next time,

L. Marie Wood

For Real?

That’s what I found myself saying when what I am about to tell you became reality. For real? Seriously?? Stop playing! (I became my teenage self again for like 10 solid minutes!) And even though the initial shock has changed from surprise and disbelief to elation since everything has been finalized and the process has begun, I still pinch myself about the whole thing. What whole thing, you might be wondering?

This whole thing…

!!!!

Archived!

FOREVER!!!

HOLY COW!

I didn’t dare to dream of this – it seemed so out of reach. Archiving was for people like Maya Angelou and James Baldwin. People whose words MATTERED. All I ever wanted was for my words to impact people; I only wanted to touch people, have my words linger and stay with them, and (considering the fact that I do write psychological horror fiction, after all) scare them. I never thought beyond that – at least not consciously. But now, as I look at what has come to pass and think about what it means, I see something that I had not considered before at play. While I was working with my head down, putting my words into the world and hoping they resonated with people at the same time wondering if those words were just floating in ther air or falling on deaf ears, people were actually connecting with them. People really did see the contribution that I (the female, African American, unrepentant pantser, horror fiction author than I am) made to the literary community. And that contribution matters. Now my words will be available forever alongside giants like George Romero and Linda Addison. Now my “papers” (OMG I just love that!) will be accessible to students who need to know that pantsing is a viable way to write and that their chicken scratch can amount to a beautiful story, that their genre mixing actual can work and only speaks to their versatility. They will be available to students in school now and 200 years from now. Now I know, without a doubt, that my words will impact people… that my words MATTER.

Y’all.

That’s some heady stuff.

I will never be over it.

Honored, thankful, floored, humbled, pumped – I am all of these things at once and will always be.

And I will keep putting my words out there because, guys, I am just getting started.

Speaking of… (the segue wasn’t awesome this time, but not the worst! LOL!)

I have a few “words” coming out soon!

Accursed is book 3 of The Realm Trilogy… it’s the end of the story and it is a banger, if I do say so myself! So much movement, so much tension… this series closes with gusto. (This is NOT the cover – the cover reveal will be SOON!) Out Mid October!

Mars, The Band Man, and Sara Sue – this is my first mystery and it was great fun putting together! There’s something to be said for minding your own business… just sayin’. This is a throwback novel and I love it! Out Mid November!

I signed a couple of contracts for work that will be out in 2023. Short stories and poetry, and then there are the big ‘uns like book 2 of the Affinity Saga (Origins) due out in Feb and that colossal project between me and Falstaff Books that kicks off in Feb as well (traditional horror fun, you guys!). Can’t wait for you to see!

These are also my words!!

Yes, you are seeing this right – this is a MOVIE POSTER!!!

My short screenplay, 271 Raeburn Avenue, will be on the silver screen soon! Filming is done and the movie is in post production (look all that film lingo!! LOL!). I got the chance to hang out on set for a day and watch some of the scenes unfold. I have to tell you, watching people act out a scene you wrote and speak lines you came up with in the middle of the night in front of your computer is an experience like no other. I loved every minute I got to spend with this amazing cast and crew. I can’t wait to be able to share more about this!

Umm… what else?

Oh! This cool thing happened! My alma mater, Southern New Hampshire University) put up an article about speculative fiction that had a few of my thoughts in it, as well as a picture! I love this! This is one of the articles that prospective students will have access to when considering attending the school and I am so happy to be able to encourage and assist in that way. Check it out – it’s an interesting read!

I’ll be speaking at a few places in October. I am so excited about these events – I get to put on my professor hat AND keep on my creative one at the same time! I’ll talk about Candyman, zombies, and horror proper in that order. WOOT!

What else have I been doing?

I have not had a ton of time to read recently (surprise, surprise!), but I have been able to watch a few things. The standout for me since we last discussed film and TV is Bulgasal: Immortal Souls. Great acting, interesting storyline, and an almost continual shift of perspective that makes you hunt for the bad guy only to find that you might actually be rooting for them! Loved this series. Loved Lee Joon in this (from The Silent Sea, a sci-fi horror series that I raved about a few newsletters ago). Definitely worth watching.

Quick notes – Are you watching Cobra Kai? If not, you probably should be! So much fun, and not just for those of us who remember watching the first Karate Kid movie when it came out in theaters!

And… did you hear that Sweet Home is getting two more seasons?!?!? YASS!!!!

I think that’s it for now!

Until next time…

L. Marie

Who doesn’t LOVE a Sale?!

Hiya!

This is a short one – I just wanted to let you know that I just made it easier for you to binge me!

🙂

Check out my 50% off sale (through 9/7) – use this code to unlock: Binge

Embrace the Horror

Pick up The Realm and Cacophony at 50% off before the final book in the trilogy, Accursed, comes out this October!

I‘ll sign every copy!

Until next time…

L. Marie

Work Eligible for Awards (2022)

Hey guys!

This year has been an awesome publishing year for me and I am so honored to sit back and take stock of what has happened. To that end, I’d like to share all of my work that is available for awards this year in the hopes that, if you are so inclined, you will consider throwing the titles into the ring. So far, here’s what’s available:

Short Fiction

“Hypnopompia”.  Something Scary Podcast   (February 2022)

When you wake up to a nightmare…

“Once a Month”.  Conjuring Worlds: Afrofuturist Textbook for Middle and High School Students. (March 2022)        

Coming of age when things are not what they seem.

“A Warm Fall Day”. Picnic in the Graveyard. (April 2022)

Perspective… it’s a thing.

“It’s the Little Things”.  The Outlet, Bloom Where You Are Planted, published in April 2022 by Blue Ridge Community and Technical College

Home alone… Home. Alone… 

“The Room”. Campfire Macabre, Vol. 2 published in October 2022 by Cemetery Gates Media

Some doors shouldn’t be opened.

Short Non Fiction 

African American Horror Authors and Their Craft: The Evolution of Horror Fiction from African Folklore.  Conjuring Worlds: An Afrofuturist Textbook for Middle and High School Students. (March 2022)  

The Horror of Hair.  Nightmare Magazine, Issue 118. (June 2022)  Hair. Ornament. Source of power. Source of beauty. Whether decoration or burden, hair is at the forefront of many cultures and has been a part of the body consciousness of women since the dawn of time. Some cultures consider it a most prized possession, one that should be donated to the gods in thanks for favor. Others consider it a defining characteristic, one that speaks of a person’s background, upbringing, and worth. 

Long Non Fiction

About Horror: The Study and Craft.  Mocha Memoirs Books    (April 2022) This text is a comprehensive deep dive into the study of horror fiction.  With importance placed on knowing the history of the genre and how integral to storytelling research is, this textbook will serve as a reference guide for anyone interested in writing in the horror genre.  This work, which is accessible and detailed at the same time, offers practical scenarios and industry secrets alongside subgenre review and creative writing instruction. 

Long Fiction

The Black Hole.  Mocha Memoirs Books (March 2022)

A group of friends head out to enjoy a much-deserved night out and paintballing is on the menu. But the team they are playing against has something entirely different in mind.

The friends find themselves in a battle for their lives in unfamiliar terrain against well-equipped opponents whose motivations are both irrational and lethal.  Considered, “… a true trip into the darkest depths of what mankind is capable of at its worst,” by Midwest Book Review, this story is a classic tale of prey combined with slasher film “edge-of-your seat” vibes with a little modern-day relevance to keep you unsettled.

Told two ways in this ground-breaking screenplay/novella combo, The Black Hole will keep you guessing, engaged, and very, very scared.

Novel

The Tryst: Affinity Series, Book 1. Cedar Grove Publishing (May 2022)  

A moment in time… insignificant and fleeting for most, but for Nicole, Mark, and Eric, it is life-altering.  Three strangers meet in a town they don’t know in a place they hadn’t expected to end up only to find that they are exactly where they were supposed to be… again. 

Love always finds a way.

Through space and time, past and future, through lifetimes and storylines they were destined to find each other, love each other, lose each other – coordinates and weapons, scenarios and demographics be damned.  A malfunction, to be sure.  But when Ryan tries to tinker with his project, a weapon the likes of which has never been seen in all of the Galactic Collaborative, he finds out just how inexorable their link is… and how insidious.

Accursed: Book 3 of The Realm Trilogy. Cedar Grove Publishing (December 2022)  

She walks alone in the darkness feeling the coolness of the air on her skin when she shouldn’t – not anymore.  She is unfamiliar with the place, the tall trees that were suddenly there, manifesting as the world she knew, the one filled with other things, other people, another life only moments before, began to melt away – but she is not afraid.  Because Gabby is where she was destined to be.

Gabby has come home.

Her family greets her with sadness in their eyes, the pain of loss evident on their faces and she strides into a house made from memories.  They had fought so hard to save her from The Realm, the place that had stolen the ever after of their ancestors for centuries.  But they had failed and even as they welcomed one of their own – the daughter whose hair Doug had smoothed when she was little – they were in danger of losing two more to that wretched nothingness.  They were in danger of losing everything.

Accursed, the final book in The Realm series, puts Patrick, his son Doug, and his granddaughter Gabby together in a fight against an evil that is hungry for the souls of all the people he loves – of every soul that would descend from his line.  Surrounded by seen and unseen foes, Patrick and his family must try to save the only two people left who could turn the tide: Gabby’s children. 

But Chris…

He’s falling from the sky before their very eyes…

Poetry

“Beautiful”. Under Her Skin. (April 2022)

Dark horror, but the title says it all.

Whew! I’ve been busy! 🙂

There are a few awards that these works can be considered for – the ones that come to mind for me are:

If you think of others and want to nominate something of mine, I would be beyond grateful. If you have not yet read the above works, please let me know what you are interested in and I will send it/them to you (you can ABSOLUTELY request more than one!).

Thanks for for considering!

Until next time…

L. Marie

“Ooh, and I Like It”

Some of you caught the title immediately – you heard the song in your head and sang along with DeBarge right away. Others of you are waiting for me to explain what I mean when I say, “Ooh, and I like it”. Don’t worry… I will.

Because that phrase means a lot of things to me right now. There have been a lot of reasons for me to say it recently and I am so, so amazed by each of them… including the couple I can’t talk about just yet. (LOL!)

I’m being unnecessarily cryptic now, so I’ll just spill.

  1. It’s Finally Happening! Mars, The Band Man, and Sara Sue will finally see the light of day! This novel means so much to me because it is my first foray into the mystery genre! Yeah, now I’m writing mysteries too! 🙂 I am so excited to add this to my cross genre toolkit – psychological horror borrows from mystery often enough, so it felt like a good fit. And what a fun story! You know me and book trailers – I just love ’em. Check this beauty out:

And this cover **bites knuckles a la Sonny in The Godfather**

I’m in love. So… in honor of this beauty, I’m offering something pretty cool. If you preorder this book from my personal sales site… you know the one you didn’t know existed because I hardly ever use it (that one!), I will sign it for you and send it out when it releases (looking like mid August of this year, friends!) and…

AND THIS IS AWESOME…

When you preorder this little beauty, I will give you a 30% off discount on any other L. Marie Wood title you like, while supply lasts!

So, get some vampire or ghosts goodies, some realistic horror, or learn how to write horror fiction yourself. Try some dark romance with a side of mystery. Have some Sci-Fi Horror in your coffee. Get some more L. Marie Wood in your life! 🙂

2. I had the honor of being the Guest Author at the In Your Write Mind Convention this month! It was an amazing experience. I was able to share my experience and be among writers in a space that encouraged creativity. I taught workshops, participated on panels, gave the keynote speech (OMG!), lectured, and signed a few books too!

They took me on a ghost tour on Seton Hill University’s campus, a place that really does look and feel like Hogwarts. It is full of tunnels and passageways that turned me upside down and messed with my sense of direction. Oh, and the stories they told about the nuns were… wow.

They let me prattle on about the stuff that matters to me – finding your own voice, letting yourself write the way you write, making your own way through publishing. They let me talk about my little academy and all the fun things we’re doing there. I certainly hope I gave as good as I got. This was an author/educator’s dream and I am so thankful to have experienced it.

3. I got a magical phone call asking me an important question that I almost didn’t hear because of the excitement bouncing around my head. I was asked if I would accept a nomination for the MICO Award. Ummm, of course! Like I could say no to THAT! This award acknowledges innovation, courage, and excellence in the Film Arts and is named after the founder of the NOVA Fest and Capital Film Market, Fernando Mico. Only six people a year are nominated worldwide. It is an honor to be seen and chosen.

There are two other amazing things I really can’t talk about, but OMG you guys, wait until I can! Here is a little something about one of them…

The Dynamic Duo right here. The Dream Team. This picture was years in the making. And I am-… oops… I’d better leave it right there.

The other thing? I can’t say anything about that… yet. BUT YOWZA!

Ok, that really has to be it (at least about that!). 🙂

What else is going on?

Something cool from me and Something Scary! If you’re up for a little neat and free scare, check out my story, “$5.99” on Something Scary!

If you’d rather read something short than listen to it, my short story “A Warm Fall Day” is in this new, creepy-themed anthology.

Me and a couple of friends (oh, just some amazing authors, screenwriters, and publishers from DWASF ) will be at BlerdCon on July 9th talking about filmmaking and writing speculative fiction. If you’re planning on going to the con, come say hi! I’ll also be on ConTinual in July and August talking about cross genre, Japanese horror movies, and scary bad guys (though not all at the same time) and at MultiverseCon in October, reprising my role as Horror Track Director for the 4th year (time flies!)! Check me out if you are around.

My TBR list is growing exponentially. It’s really getting to be out of hand. I just added The Murder of Tutankhamen by Bob Brier, Ph.D. and I still have The Lying Game by Ruth Ware waiting for me to get serious about reading. I don’t know which one I want to read first. It’s a great problem to have. What are you reading? Reply back… enable me some more!

I finished The Silent Sea on Netflix and loved it. It was nice to see Bae Doona again and I now have a new actor that I want to see in more stuff: Lee Joon. Sci-Fi and super dark – loved it!

“Ooh, and I like it.”

I really do… Just like DeBarge said. DeBarge, that group from the 1980s led by El? This was one of my favorites by them. Here’s a blast from the past because yeah, I like it.

I like it all.

Until next time…

L. Marie

Life is what you make it

As I sometimes do, let’s start with a song:

Blast from the past, right? But it absolutely applies to the situation I find myself in. Don’t worry, this is a good thing – let me say that at the start… this is an AWESOME problem to have, but it is definitely a different situation than I expected to be in.

Because who could have imagined the past two years we’ve all had? I don’t need to remind you about the details of the pandemic (then and now) because we all lived and are living it, but the impacts felt in the publishing world were not anticipated… at least not by me. I didn’t see the paper problems that publishers experienced coming, nor the shipping problems. I didn’t think about how illness (personal and familial) would impact editors and typesetters and all the people who make a book come together. I didn’t think about the eventual worker shortage and how that would impact books getting from point A to point B. Nor did I anticipate the mental strain that would impact people at all levels of the process. We’ve lived through a rough time, folks. And I have learned a lot of things about patience, priorities, and compassion because of it.

I write a lot. I have a lot in the hopper. It was staggered so beautifully, just enough every year – a little L. Marie Wood goes a long way. But alas, best laid plans…

So now instead of the trickle, here’s the deluge! 🙂 I have 9 individual titles coming out this year (yes… yep). Two have seen the light of day already!

The Black Hole is my experimental project with Mocha Memoirs Press that showcases the premise as a short story (it’s long for me, though!) and a screenplay. Lots of fun! Scared some people out of the woods, this one.

About Horror is my textbook (woohoo! I am BEAMING!). I have been writing horror fiction forever and I have learned a few things that I wanted to share about genre, writing, and voice, so I decided to combine my passions (writing and teaching) in this textbook. If you’re a writer (aspiring or seasoned) this book is for you!

My first foray into dark romance has hopped around with release dates but it will greet the world in early May.

And seriously, I can’t wait! This book was a blast to write – I can’t wait for you to meet these characters.

The preorder is available for you on Amazon, Target, and Bookshop!

Telecommuting came out in May of 2021 in print and ebook and now I am proud to announce the release of the audiobook version! It sounds amazing and is worth the read… listen? Check it out!

I have an amazing mystery coming (my first pure mystery ever!).

I have a really cool traditional horror project coming in the summer.

And, and, and… there’s more – check out the Coming Soon page to see just how much more (there are stories in anthologies too and speaking engagements and.. wow).

It’ll be a busy, busy year.

Things bumped and it was out of anyone’s control… so now I say…

🙂

If you like conferences and listening to panels and learning more about the industry, you might enjoy Writing in the Dark (April 28-May 1). I’ll get to talk with friends about horror and writing and all sorts of things.

So remember, life is what you make it. When life hands you lemons, make lemonade. Roll with the punches. And finally, my favorite, it’ll all get done.

Until next time!

L. Marie

I can feel it coming in the air…

Can’t you?

The warm weather is almost here! It keeps trying to push through, to give us a glimpse of what we can look forward to and I, for one, am here for it. There’s something about feeling the warm air that just makes me happy. But, as I look out at the sun, then to my clock, then back at the sun and shake my head, I am reminded of how much I procrastinate during warm weather. And then I’ve been listening to this guy’s mixes recently, losing more minutes than I will ever admit to dancing along with him at my desk, and I just… I might be in for it, come to think of it.

Sigh.

I will have to have a conversation with myself, the part that just wants to go play. ‘These words won’t write themselves,’ I’ll tell myself soon… after this mix is over:

Speaking of words, I have a few new ones for you! Check THIS out!

A group of friends head out to enjoy a much-deserved night out and paintballing is on the menu. But the team they are playing against has something entirely different in mind.

The friends find themselves in a battle for their lives in unfamiliar terrain against well-equipped opponents whose motivations are both irrational and lethal.  Considered, “… a true trip into the darkest depths of what mankind is capable of at its worst,” by Midwest Book Review, this story is a classic tale of prey combined with slasher film “edge-of-your seat” vibes with a little modern-day relevance to keep you unsettled.

Told two ways in this ground-breaking screenplay/novella combo, The Black Hole will keep you guessing, engaged, and very, very scared.

Steven Van Patten, author of The Brookwater Curse series, said a little more than this about it, but I thought this was particularly cool, “You may never go into the woods again.”

And check out this cover – omgosh, right? I was floored when I saw it. Who do you think the guy up front looks like? Reply and let me know!

This fun novella will be released on March 15, 2022 but you don’t have wait until then to snatch one up. You can preorder your copy today! And while you’re there, Telecommuting is another Mocha Memoirs novella, if you wanted a little more L. Marie Wood in your life! 🙂

In a strange twist of fate (ooh, nice segue, if I do say so myself…and also, now I can’t get that Olivia Newton John song out of my head!), my first foray into a story with a heavy helping of romance comes out right on the heels of The Black Hole. And ooh, I can’t wait for you to check this one out!

A moment in time… insignificant and fleeting for most, but for Nicole, Mark, and Eric, it is life-altering.  Three strangers meet in a town they don’t know in a place they hadn’t expected to end up only to find that they are exactly where they were supposed to be… again. 

Love always finds a way.

Through space and time, past and future, through lifetimes and storylines they were destined to find each other, love each other, lose each other – coordinates and weapons, scenarios and demographics be damned.  A malfunction, to be sure.  But when Ryan tries to tinker with his project, a weapon the likes of which has never been seen in all of the Galactic Collaborative, he finds out just how inexorable their link is… and how insidious.

The beginning of an experimental series that will challenge the way you think about love, life, connection, and purpose, The Tryst will catch you in its whirlwind and never let you go.  Each book in the Affinity series will combine of mixture of mystery, thriller, psychological horror, action, suspense, science fiction elements in differing measures, always with romance as an undercurrent.

Love always finds a way.

But sometimes that way is paved with bones.

This books comes out on March 25, 2022, but heck, why wait? Preorder your copy today!

If you would like to listen to something scary while you fool around on social media, work on a puzzle, wait in the car to pick someone up from somewhere, or whenever you let your mind relax, check this out! My short story, “Hypnopompia”, (say that five times fast…say that just one time at regular cadence…lol!) is brought to life by the folks at The Something Scary Podcast! I get to share space with a good friend of mine too (which makes this whole experience that much better!) so be sure to hang out for R.J. Joseph’s story too – it’s right after mine.

If you like poetry, this collection is sure to provide some interesting, thought-provoking perspectives. And yeah, I’m in it! LOL! I don’t write a lot of poetry and I just can’t tell you how cool it is to be included alongside some real giants in the medium.

I have similar feelings about the Conjuring Worlds textbook. I have a short story in there as well as a critical piece and I am simply ecstatic to be part of a project geared toward educating youths about speculative fiction and how they can navigate the web work. These are due out in late March and early April respectively.

Yeah, I have some words coming your way for sure – and we haven’t even talked about what’s coming the rest of this year! I have some words over on the Horror Writer’s Association that are pretty interesting too. If you were ever curious about my thoughts on horror, check out this interview.

Ok, maybe I should get back to those words, you know, the ones that won’t write themselves.

🙂

Until next time,

L. Marie Wood