The Goblin King is here!!!

The fourth book in the Big Bad Wolf spinoff series, The Kings, is now available at both Amazon (Kindle) and Barnes and Noble (Nook).

Damon Chroi has known the weight of ruling in loneliness for thousands of years. The tall, painfully handsome fae lord was born with so much power, the fae kings not only envied but feared him, and banished him to a forbidden realm to be forgotten. There, he was tasked with ruling over the deadliest creatures known to the fae worlds, and his veritable battle as their sovereign is never-ending. As one of the 13 Kings, his destiny foretells an end to his solitude with the appearance of an equally powerful queen. But that kind of power is hard to come by. And power or not, Damon can’t imagine any woman willingly joining him in the eternal misery to which he has been tasked.

Until he meets the beautiful, strong and selfless Diana Piper.

Diana has been hiding a potent secret from the world for decades. She was born with abilities others would fight to win, and kill to keep. To make matters worse, she is a sensitive soul who, despite the danger it poses to herself, uses these powers to make the world a better place. Forever in harm’s way, overworked and head strong, Diana one night comes across the ultimate challenge in the form of a wayward fae beast – and in the process, crosses paths with its indomitable king. A light can only shine in the darkness so long before someone takes note of it. And Diana not only manages to gain the instant attentions of Damon Chroi… but of those who would do anything to see him – and the other 13 Kings – dead.

Amazon:
http://www.amazon.com/The-Goblin-King-Kings-ebook/dp/B00CYM1HEA/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1369337062&sr=8-2&keywords=the+goblin+king+heather+killough+walden

Barnes and Noble:
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-goblin-king-heather-killough-walden/1115409006?ean=2940016675602

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Indie Author of the Year

The Indie Romance Convention poll results are in.  My readers really came through for me and showed the world they loved my work! I won in every category for which I was nominated:
1. Best Friend to Readers
2. Best Young Adult Series (Sam I Am from The October Trilogy)
3. Best Romance Series (The Big Bad Wolf)
4. Best Science Fiction and Futuristic (A Sinister Game)
5. Indie Author of the Year 🙂

Thank you to everyone who took the time to vote. To celebrate, I will now be holding a huge giveaway on my Facebook page at www.facebook.com/killoughwalden.

xoxo

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Workin’ On It

This blog entry is for all of my readers wondering about release dates. ☺

One of the disadvantages of print publishing is that you’re under a contract deadline and hence have to write what you’re contracted to write whether you feel like it or not.

Or rather, I should say that one of the advantages of indie publishing – is that you don’t.

Right now, I have readers asking me for the sequels in five different series: The Kings, Neverland, The Lost Angels, The October Trilogy, and The Chosen Soul. For some reason, the fates deemed to bless me with the ability to write well, but often not about any single thing for too terribly long, lol. Characters and their situations fight one another for attention in the ring of my mind, and whichever is the strongest at any given point in time is the one that wins the immortality of ink and paper.

And so, I can’t give you exact release dates for any of my series except one. The October Trilogy is a seasonal series, clearly, and since the month of October is so integral to its telling that the word is in fact in its title, you can rest assured that the third book in the trilogy will be out in October of 2013.

The others, however, I have to write as they want to be written. This is a good thing. It means I won’t go rushing through any of them when I’m not inspired to do so. Writing when you don’t feel like it often lends itself to a poor end product. Since I won’t be doing this, you can rest assured that when the books do release, they’ll be freaking awesome.

Promise.

XOXO

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That Kind of Writer

Every writer knows at least one person who has been writing a book for several years, if not for the duration of their entire life. Isn’t there a saying about that, in fact? There’s a novel in everyone?
I’ve met a lot of these people. One in particular has been working on the world’s greatest literary masterpiece for the last twenty-two years. Recently, she sent me an email to let me know that she was having trouble getting through my book because it was “so poorly written.” My response: “Which one? I’ve published twenty-one of them.” (It happened to be a book from my sole print published series, as print is all she will read.)
In that moment, I acknowledged an epiphany that had been tickling my brain for attention for quite some time. There are two kinds of authors in this world. The first consists of arm-chair worshipers of the printed word, so devout in their antiquated study of letters, they revere them to the point of not wanting to touch them. Words are sacred and must not be penned by anyone but the most worthy and preferably holy. And so, it’s best not to pen them at all.
And this is exactly what they do. They trudge through life with pen in fist, notebook under one arm, and a book bag filled with Nabokov and Tolstoy – not writing a single readable word.
The second kind of author is very simply: The writer.
I should make it clear that what I consider to be a true writer is also a gifted writer, that special person blessed by the inexplicable ability to take the alphabet by the balls and force it to make absolute and unequivocal sense.
The writer is not an individual concerned with the shiny laminated cover of a newly born hardback novel. This is not that scholarly mumbler who dreams of high-brow edits amidst coffee stains, tobacco and absinthe. This is not a Tolstoy reader.
This is the individual who can not wake without penning a dream, who can not go anywhere – anywhere at all – without a chewed writing utensil and a clean, promising sheet of paper. And if he or she is caught without them? This is the individual who will literally bother a complete stranger for them or even go so far as to purchase a new pen or pencil on the spot in order to write down a few precious, un-ignorable words.
This is the person with seventy-two journals lining their shelves, for whom the greatest known compliment in the world has nothing to do with clothing or hair or body shape but is that elusive kind word having to do with their written work. This is the fevered scribbler, the paramount paragrapher.
This is the Marquis de Sade, so possessed by the buzzing, incessant words in his tortured soul, he literally bled them out like demons, using his own red life giving liquid as the ink for the writing that spared him a worse death than any French prison might have cast upon him.
A writer does not write as a hobby. It is not a pastime. It is not something we do for lofty dreams of being recalled classically or included in tired English lessons.
Writing, quite frankly, is an obsession.
People often ask me what they can do to become a successful author. Knowing that they’re referring to “being known,” and to “selling big,” I tell them that if they are a gifted writer, it will happen. In this day and age of free press and the electronic book, there will be no other option. A writer will be so distracted by the need to tell their story – nay, their multiple stories – and tell them well, he or she will have no choice but to publish, and publish a lot.
You get enough well-written published books under your belt and guess what? You’re successful.
That other class of author, on the other hand? Will staunchly insist that despite your public success, you yet know nothing about the words you write. Because as they are worshiping those sacred words from afar – you have the words strapped down to your bed and are making love to them like mad.

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“Moon Dancer”

I write about vampires.

They say that to write well, you must write what you know. Many have mirthfully and even lovingly referred to me as a vampire. I always duck my head coyly and never bother to deny it.
There is a mystique to this title, and a verity in it as well. I am not quick to cast it off.

But there is someone who calls me something else, and this one knows me deeply.

My daughter calls me Moon Dancer.

I’ve never been a fan of the day. Even as a little girl, I felt there was something so pompous about the sun, so showy and pushy. It was selfish, the sun. It stole the spotlight and shoved real beauty into the background.
I would hide away and while away until the sun finally got tired of its bullying.
Then I would creep to a window or step outside – and smile.
An entire universe revealed itself; stars, planets, darkness.
The contrast of purple, indigo, midnight, and black against the pulsing twinkle of distant possibilities left me breathless.
I laughed out loud sometimes. As a child, I reached my little hands up and clutched at the endlessness, delighting in the light year pixie dust. Nothing blinded me. It only shared and entertained and pleased.
I dream at night, but not in sleep. I look up, and I imagine, and I wonder.
I always have.

My daughter calls me Moon Dancer because I come alive when the sun goes down. After twilight has faded into the sable shades of infinity, I breathe.
I dance.

In the forever – and on the moon.

– Heather Killough-Walden

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The Warlock King

“He was not only a warlock, he was a decidedly powerful warlock, a practiced and capable warlock, and a terribly smart warlock. If that wasn’t enough, he was the goddamned Warlock King. Warlocks were a dark breed. And Chloe was running from nothing short of the devil.” – The Warlock King by Heather Killough-Walden

This Valentine’s Day, look for book three in the Big Bad Wolf spinoff series, The Kings – the continuation of the story of the 13 Kings, their desperate search for their fated queens, and the indomitable enemies who will stop at nothing to find them first.

The Warlock King

Jason Alberich wears the crown of the sovereign of the warlocks, a dark breed that uses darker magic. He wears it well, skillfully wielding a power that would corrupt others. Yet he has paid the price for his control, bearing the scars of a time when his power had control over him. He is haunted by the regrets of a shady past and now lives each day and night with an isolated soul.

Chloe Septeran is an Akyri like no other. A member of a race that must depend upon warlocks for sustenance in exchange for servitude, Chloe runs from the dark magic users, choosing instead to live free of their hold. She has existed empty and “hungry,” but stubbornly free of the warlock’s dark embrace. However now, the fates have chosen to bring her running to a halt, as the 13 Kings each discover their queens – and the Warlock King discovers his.

A mighty power is awakening, wreaking havoc on the supernatural world. The 13 Kings, their queens, the werewolf nation, and the witch covens with their high leader, Lalura Chantelle, must band together and stand strong in the face of a dawning nightmare that threatens the very fabric of all they hold dear… and from which none may escape.

“Chloe knew the exact moment that she had taken him to his breaking point. The atmosphere in the room changed. A faint wind seemed to pick up out of nowhere. The fire in the hearth shifted into a host of black and blue flames that sparkled like magic dust and crackled like mad. She looked up to meet Jason’s gaze. One heartbeat, one tiny, single pulse between them told her everything. And it was all the time he gave her.” – The Warlock King, by Heather Killough-Walden

Coming Valentine’s Day, February 14th 2013

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A Big Bad World Valentine’s Day Story

“Wings in the Attic,” a Big Bad World Valentine’s Day story by Heather Killough-Walden

February 14th, 2013….

Lalura stopped in the open attic doorway, her small bent frame and surrounding dust motes outlined by the hall light behind her. She stood still for several long moments and gazed into the darkness. The stark blue of her eyes was hidden in shadow, just as were the remnants that waited in the corners and piles of the rickety shelter. It smelled of cedar and memories up here.

Cedar and dust and memories.

“Hmph.”

Lalura’s intelligent gaze narrowed on the darkness of the neglected room. It seemed a challenge, almost. There were whispers inside, from old friends and enemies; they pushed at one another for a chance at her ear. There were flashes of things she’d tried a thousand times to forget, like bits of torn movie reel flung before a projector light. There were old songs in there, and even now she could make out their faint notes, piano keys and violin strokes from long, long ago.

Lalura lifted her chin. She took a slow breath, filling her ancient lungs with both dust and courage before releasing her breath into the past once more. Then she spoke a harsh, magic word, and extended an arm.

An old-fashioned gas lantern appeared in her gnarled grip. Its yellow, flickering flame cast dancing shapes across the long floor boards in front of her. She stood there in the under-used doorway for several more long moments, and then took the first step past the threshold that she’d taken in seventy years.

At once, the atmosphere of the room changed. The dust lifted away, the darkness turned to light, and the past greeted her with the jubilance of an old friend. She moved through the attic, leaving behind her a trail of dancing couples and bridesmaids in a line and little girls learning to ride their bicycles. Winters, springs, summers and falls blossomed to life, froze to silence, and fell by the wayside with every one of the witch’s slow, steady steps.

She moved with resolution, her blue eyes trained on the end of the attic, where a man stood at the windows that looked out over a snow-covered world. She didn’t see him, though. She saw past him, she saw through him, her far-away gaze trained on yesteryears and bygones, her heart trapped in what might have been.

But he saw her. His handsome face was clean shaven, his tall form was draped in uniform, and in his hands he held the hat of an air force colonel. His blue eyes matched the blue of his station; he was tall and regal, and the very air about him spoke of good deeds done. He was a hero. He was her hero.

Once upon a time.

Lalura smiled now as she remembered.

You’re a fool, she’d told him. Such a romantic. A proposal on Valentine’s Day of all days. Only you would brave the crowds, Conrad. Only you.

Is that a yes?

She could hear the nervous tremor in his deep voice. She’d held her breath and tried not to giggle. It wasn’t like a witch of her growing stature to fall to giggling. But her heart had grown wings – wings like the ones on his chest.

“Yes,” she whispered now, echoing her response of long ago.

Beneath the dusty window with its cobwebs and peeling paint sat a music box. Lalura made her way to it as the echoes died down and the memories settled and the world became still once more.

He watched her in his ghostly silence as she stopped before it and reached for its latch with gnarled, weathered fingers. It slid back and away as if it had not been seven decades since she had opened it last. A spell kept it safe. Dusty, but safe.

“I love you, Lana,” he told her now, his long-dead voice reaching into the empty spaces of the attic to grace them with remnants of another time.

Lalura closed her eyes as if she’d heard him – this ghost of the man she’d once promised herself to.

A moment later, she opened her eyes once more, and then opened the box. She gazed down at the small collection on the single velvet pouch that sat within it. The music of the box began to play, its crisp, lilting notes filling the air with bitter sweet harmony.

On the pillow sat a pair of wedding rings, as shining and smooth as the day she’d slipped them inside. Neither of them had ever been worn.

Beside the empty rings rested a set of metal dog tags and a single sterling silver pin. Lalura picked up the pin with trembling fingers and gazed longingly, rememberingly, at the small propeller and set of angel-like wings. “I love you too, Conrad,” she whispered. Snow swirled and curled outside. The wind rustled the branches of a nearby tree and brushed the wind chimes hanging from the porch rafters. Somewhere, violins joined the music box notes, and a symphony soothed Lalura’s tired soul.

The handsome soldier looked on. He always had and always would.

Lalura, or Lana as her fiancé had once called her, closed her eyes and held the pin to her heart. “Happy Valentine’s Day.”

 

Lalura Chantelle is the high witch of Heather Killough-Walden’s Big Bad Wolf spinoff series, The Kings. Look for book three in The Kings series: The Warlock King, coming for Valentine’s Day, February 14, 2013.

 

 

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It’s HERE

Death’s Angel is now available – and is currently in the top 10 in vampires on Amazon!! Read it and see why!!!

http://www.amazon.com/Deaths-Angel-Novel-Angels-ebook/dp/B00A3IV93G/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1356998057&sr=8-1&keywords=death%27s+angel

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Mayan Reality Check

Reality Check.

Please consider this. We ourselves have calendars that end. If five thousand years from now, someone found one of ours, they might be convinced that we felt the world would end on December 31st, (insert any year at all) because we have yearly calendars. Other cultures have five year calendars, twenty year calendars, and five hundred year calendars. They are meant to be cycled and used over, and of course there is NEVER any mention of an “end of the world.” Such a concept is pure hyped-up fantasy.

” ‘The Maya recorded time in a series of cycles, including 400-year chunks called baktuns. It’s these baktuns that have led to rumors of an end-of-the-world catastrophe on Dec. 21, 2012 — on that date, a cycle of 13 baktuns will be complete. But the idea that this means the end of the world is a misconception,’ Stuart said. ‘In fact, Maya experts have known for a long time that the calendar doesn’t end after the 13th baktun. It simply begins a new cycle. And the calendar encompasses much larger units than the baktun.’ ”

The Mayan calendar apparently actually continues for millions – billions – trillions (and larger numbers) of years. So long, in fact, that we would have a hard time envisioning this length of time.

Read this rather informing article for more information (so that if you knew nothing of the truth before and were running around mad as if the world really were going to end tomorrow – you can finally rest easy).

http://www.livescience.com/20218-apocalypse-oldest-mayan-calendar.html

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Teaser Tuesday – Death’s Angel

Azrael stood still in the men’s restroom of the portable guest- and bathhouse that had been erected outside of Slains Castle for his brother’s wedding. He was alone, and the air was filled with the hollow sound of foreboding. There was a storm brewing. It was a hurricane, hot and windy and destructive, and it was ripping through Azrael’s insides, begging to be released. He exhaled a shaky breath and pressed his forehead to the mirror in front of him, glancing up at his reflection as he did so.
Another human myth gone horribly awry. Vampires did indeed have reflections. It was the wraiths that didn’t. Azrael bared his teeth and laughed a cold, hard laugh at the thought. The most asinine things were going through his head at that moment. The thoughts were like fireflies on a pitch-black night, chaotic and useless and utterly distracting.
Sophie’s whispered thoughts echoed through his mind, taunting him. I would do anything. She’d been thinking about Juliette’s wings and wishing she could fly. If she’d had any idea how dangerously tempting her thoughts were . . . To say nothing of her reaction to the image he had so carelessly planted in her mind of the wedding ring sliding onto her finger. He hadn’t even meant to do it; he’d simply imagined it. However, he’d been in her head at the time, thoroughly rapt in all that she was, and she’d caught the impression clear as a bell.
Her heart had skipped, her cheeks had flushed, and her lips had actually grown fuller as blood rushed into them. Her eyes had become glassy and unfocused. Her breath had hitched. And Azrael lost a little of his sanity then and there at his brother’s wedding.
He’d never felt like this before. Not in his two thousand years on Earth—nor in the thousands upon thousands of years before that in the realm of angels. Never had he lost focus in this manner. He felt like he had the flu. But vampires didn’t get the flu. Archangels didn’t get the flu. The Angel of Death most certainly did not get the flu.
Azrael swore under his breath—and the mirror in front of him cracked beneath his palm, slicing into the skin of his hand. He blinked and slowly pulled away, straightening as he turned his hand over and gazed down at the welling red line across his palm. Even as he watched, it began to heal.
Azrael looked back up at the mirror and glared at the evidence of his rage. Lightning had indeed carved itself across the glass, a reflection of the storm that raged within him and was now breaking free. Get control, he told himself sternly. He was the most powerful vampire on Earth. If he couldn’t control his emotions, they would leak out in an incredibly destructive manner. Broken mirrors would be only the beginning.
He needed to think. He needed to plan. But Sophie Bryce was two hundred yards away, a walking, talking piece of the sun, and Azrael was losing it.
The lights in the men’s restroom began to flicker, and the shadows in the corners grew longer. The temperature in the room seemed to drop. Thunder rolled in the distance. Again Azrael swore. He was fighting a losing battle. The image in the broken mirror reflected a tall, broad-shouldered man draped in stygian black, his sable hair framing a strikingly handsome face that was entirely too pale. Eyes that were entirely too bright.
And fangs that were entirely too long.
With a great amount of effort, Azrael forced his fangs to recede. He couldn’t get rid of them completely; his incisors would always be noticeably sharp and a touch longer than human canines. But with a good deal of concentration, he was able to make them look passable. This was a learned vampire ability; new vampires had to practice at it, and it could sometimes take years.
Azrael would know. When he had left his realm and traveled to Earth with his brothers two thousand years ago, something had happened to him. Michael’s theory was that what Azrael had done up until then as the Angel of Death somehow negatively influenced his material form on Earth. Unlike his brothers, Az had been transformed into some kind of supernatural monster.
At the time there was no name for what he was. The fangs, the nearly unquenchable hunger for blood, the new and horrid deadly aversion to the sun—these symptoms had never existed in a being until Azrael came along. He was the first vampire. He gave himself the name because it sounded right.
It took him months to learn to control the hunger inside. It had been a very painful period of time, and in the years since then, he had never forgotten the way it tore him up inside, shredding his soul like tissue paper. Now, every night as he awoke with the stars, he thanked fate that he no longer suffered. He still had to feed. It was necessary for the survival of a vampire that he ingest human blood every night. But his need had become a simple understanding of his physiology—and an acceptance of the same. He considered himself immensely fortunate and never took for granted the fact that he no longer craved and hungered the way he had in those horrid moments of vampiric inception.
But tonight . . .
Now, as Azrael stood in the men’s restroom outside of the castle, he was gripped by acidic, mind-numbing fear. Because he felt it again. It was the same driving kind of need—one that shoved every other thought or desire or inclination ruthlessly out of the way and threatened absolute subjugation. Only this time, it was focused. Directed.
He hungered. He craved like a madman. But what he craved and hungered for was Sophie Bryce.
His archess.

From Death’s Angel, by Heather Killough-Walden
Coming December, 2012

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