A closet readers take on: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy, Romance, Erotica, YA Fiction & Audiobooks

Monday, November 21, 2011

GUEST BLOG & CONTEST: Megan Hart 's THE RESURRECTED



I'm very excited to bring you one of my all-time favorite authors, Megan Hart. She has taken the time to stop by the Nice Girls Blog to talk about her series THE RESURRECTED. Megan is know as much for her sexy writing and gritty language, as she is for her deep, realistic characters. Her new series THE RESURRECTED may be change from her usual genre, but still contains that same thought provoking, emotional writing style.


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When a series of freak storms sweep across the world, they leave behind something more than devastation. First come the swift-growing flowers, smelling like heaven and dying as quickly as they bloom. Next comes the infestation as the flowers breed and multiply inside their hosts. After that, chaos, mayhem and death.

And after that…resurrection.


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I started working on The Resurrected in the spring of 2011. I’d been wanting to write some horror for a while, and had been tossing around the idea of doing a serial set of stories, released one a month, each standing on its own but being part of an overall story. I knew I’d want to write in an “end of the world” type setting -- something with zombies, maybe, because I love shows like The Walking Dead, movies like 28 Days Later and books like I am Legend and The Stand.

I came up with the idea that something would trigger an outbreak of irrational, furious behavior, but I didn’t want it to be a virus. As I thought more and more about the story, I was intrigued by the series of tornadoes that swept the country, along with other really strange weather anomalies we’d been experiencing. When my husband sent me a link to an article about a fungus that can show up in the aftermath of natural disasters, I knew I had my premise. An alien flower something like a mushroom, transported and distributed by strange tornadoes (including a water spout in one story) roots, blooms and dies while infecting human hosts which then incubate the spores inside them. The growing spores cause irrational behavior culminating in rage, violence and finally, the expulsion of the spores through the eyes, nose and mouth, thus spreading the spores to infect other hosts!

The Resurrected is a little horror, a little science fiction, there’s a little sexy romance. The best part of writing the stories has been the ability to include whatever I wanted, making each story a unique piece while tying them all together and telling a story about many people’s experiences when the world as they know it ends. At their heart, though, the stories are all about people and their relationships and how they react to their situations -- just like all my other books.

Part One features Cal and Abbie, strangers who meet in a bar and find an instant connection that leads to something more as they share a night of passion and destruction. Cal...mmm, Cal. Long and lean, sexy as all get-out...and he knows just what to do in an emergency. You gotta love that!

Currently, I have five completed stories. Parts one and two are available now at Amazon.com, Smashwords.com, BN.com and the iBookstore, with other digital retailers to be added in the future. Part three will be released in December. You can find Part One for free on my website (and also from the iBookstore!) I plan to release ten to complete the first overall story, with more in the future depending on where the story goes.

I hope readers of my sexy romance or mainstream work will give The Resurrected a try, especially if they enjoy a little scare now and then. And, because Heidi was so kind to invite me here today, I’m going to give away a complete collection of The Resurrected to one lucky winner -- parts one through five to be send immediately, with six through ten as they’re completed. Just leave a comment here telling me why or why not you like zombie fiction!

So, don’t forget to visit http://www.meganhart.com/short-fiction/the-resurrected/ to get your free download of the first part of The Resurrected, as well as up-to-date information about the upcoming releases!




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Excerpt from The Resurrected-- Part One




That man walked like he’d never been afraid of anything.

That’s what Abbie Monroe thought when she looked at her own reflection in the mirror behind the bar at the Hole in the Wall and saw him passing behind her without so much as a second glance. That man walked like he’d never been afraid of anything and would never have to be. She turned to look at him in the real world, not in the mirror, thinking maybe it was the shadows or flashing lights from the tiny dance floor, or maybe simply the backwards, through-the-looking-glass reversal of everything that had made him stand out to her so clearly.

Nope.

It was still all him.

Her grandfather had been a sailor in the Navy during World War II and for most of his life, and he’d never lost that sort of rolling lope of a man for whom the ground beneath him was never still. The man heading toward the pool table at the back of the bar didn’t walk quite that way, but there was something familiar in the stride, in the shift of his hips. In the way he looked neither to right nor left unless he was focusing his gaze on someone reaching out to shake his hand, and even then, he shifted his entire body so briefly, so intently, that it was clear very little could ever take him by surprise.

And, Abbie reasoned as she signaled the bartender for another beer, she was probably full of seven different kinds of shit.

Maybe she just wanted him to not be afraid of anything, she thought as she sipped cold, foamy beer and twisted in her stool to watch the man nod at the couple playing pool. Was he going to play? She watched him tip his cap with some sort of letter logo on it, a big OU. It looked like a giant Kosher symbol to her, which was so unlikely it had to be wrong. Out here in the middle-of-nowhere, Oklahoma, it was all boots and hats and worn denim jeans with big belt buckles, shirts with the mother-of-pearl snap-front buttons and sleeves rolled up to elbows. Even on the women. She looked down at her skinny jeans and ballet flats, her fitted t-shirt and cardigan sweater. Maybe if she wore a hat like his, a pair of shit-kicking boots, she’d never be afraid either.

The bartender slid a basket of onion rings toward her along with a small plastic cup of some kind of spicy dip. It smelled so strongly of horseradish she had to blink and turn her head to hold back a sneeze, but her mouth watered in anticipation of the burn. She dipped a ring, thick with batter and grease and the size of her fist, into the dip and took a bite.

Damn, she thought with a sigh of ecstasy. That is some good dip.

“You like it?” The bartender laughed and rapped the top of the bar with his knuckles. “It’ll grow hair on your chest.”

“It just about seared my sinuses, that’s for sure.” Abbie gulped some beer and wiped her lips with a napkin. Gave the guy a grin that felt a little too big, a little too bright but was nevertheless genuine and didn’t seem to scare him too much. “Not sure if I need any hair on my chest, though.”

“Can I get you anything else?”

She shook her head. “I’m good for now.”

Behind him, above the mirror, a flat-screen TV flickered and danced with pictures of products and services she’d never used or bought but could easily be convinced she needed. She couldn’t remember the last time she’d watched television — cable had been one of the first things to go when she took her own place, and though she’d taken her share of the DVD collection, she’d never gotten around to getting a DVD player. Even in hotels she rarely turned on the television, having grown out of the habit of needing mindless background noise. When she’d still been paying for her smart phone, Twitter had provided her news, and if her tweet stream filled up too much with chatter about some subjects that had become incomprehensible to her because she wasn’t up on pop culture she simply tuned out for a few days. It had been months since she’d had a smart phone.

Television, the great hypnotist. When her children were smaller, Abbie had often needed to physically stand between them and the set in order to break the force it had on their attention. Ryan had been the same way, gaze ensnared by infomercials and cartoons with the same sticky strength. Now Abbie found herself understanding, sort of, the allure. Watching the TV meant she didn’t have to think much about anything but the steady stream of images, the sound turned down so it became a game for her to match the Closed-Captioning with the action on the screen.
“Can you believe that?” Beside her, the man she’d noticed earlier had sidled up to the bar, unnoticed while she’d allowed herself to be numbed by the TV. He tipped a glass rattling with ice cubes but otherwise empty, toward the screen. “Fella’s been on the news all day long.”

She gave her stool a half-turn, feeling rather than hearing the squeak of metal on metal. “What for?”

“Bud, turn it up, will you?” With a nod for the bartender, the man turned to her. “Says he’s had a sign from God the world’s gonna end.”

“Oh.” Abbie’s mouth twisted. She looked at the screen, noticing the captions were a couple seconds behind the actual words, which was disorienting. Especially when they were misspelled.

“Ice cream suit.”

The man laughed. “Huh?”

She pointed. The guy on the screen wore a white suit, white shirt, white tie. She’d bet he wore white shoes, too, but she hadn’t yet caught sight of his feet even though he was walking up and down on a small stage, shouting his proclamations to a rapt audience of a couple hundred moon-eyed faces.

“Ice cream suit,” she said. “Um, it was a story by Ray Bradbury. The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit. Whenever I see a suit like that, that’s what I think of. Also, it makes me suspect the guy wearing it is full of shit.”

The man laughed again, louder this time, and turned to rest his elbow on the bar while he looked at her. “Is that so?”

Abbie smiled, just a little. “Well. What do you think?”

The man kept his body angled toward her but tilted his head to look up at the TV. He watched for a second or two, smiling though his eyes were narrowed. Assessing. He noticed things, she thought, and her throat gave a small, dry click when she swallowed. He noticed everything.

He looked at her. “I think you’re right. Overflowing with shit.”

Her smile hadn’t faded while he studied the d-bag in the ice cream suit. Now it slanted just a little wider — not as freakishly broad as the one she’d given the bartender earlier, and this one sat more naturally on her face. “A veritable river of it.”

“An ocean,” the man agreed and gestured at her drink. “Buy you another?”

She hadn’t planned on drinking another beer, but then…when did she ever plan to drink another one? They usually just followed one after the other like stepping stones set into a stream, and she hopped along them one at a time until she lost her balance and fell into the drink. She nodded and pushed her empty glass toward the bartender. “Sure. Thanks.”

“Cal,” the man told her, and held out a hand for her to shake.

“Abbie.”

His palm was callused, his fingers strong and warm. He held her hand for a second or two longer than was absolutely necessary, and that’s how she knew she’d be taking him back to her place.



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THE RESURRECTED -- CONTEST


Megan has been kind enough to offer one lucky reader the entire series (parts one through five to be send immediately, with six through ten as they’re completed)! Entering this contest is extremely easy.

The contest begins today and ends on Monday, November 28 at 11:59pm EST. Check back on Tuesday, November 29, when I will post the winners name!


Here is what you need to do:
  • In the comment section below leave you first name, last initial
  • Tell me why or why not you like zombie fiction

Rules and Legal Disclaimers:
  • I will use random.org to choose the winner.
  • Entrants must be at least 18 years of age to enter.
  • The winner has Two days, from the day I post the winners name, to claim your prize. Failure to contact me result in forfeit of your prize.
  • These rules are subject to change or be modified without prior written notice.
  • Contest is void where prohibited.
  • By entering this contest you are agreeing to our terms of entry.

7 comments:

Grace Fonseca said...

Very nice blog. Like the background and header very much. The Resurrected sounds like a cool book. Excellent post. New follower. Come visit me as well.

Grace
Livre De Amour-Books of Love Blog

ReaderOfAllThingsBookish said...

Thanks Megan! I can't wait to start this series. I loved The Stand, so this should be right up my alley.

I have to say that I really don't like zombies. They scare the crap out of me. They seem to close to reality for my taste.

Nikki B.

Anonymous said...

The reason I like Zombie Fiction:

It's gross and disgusting, but in a good fun entertaining way! While they are scary, they are funny in their own.

Kim S.

Anonymous said...

Carly R.

I love zombie books, because they break the mold. They aren't your standard run-of-the-mill Vampire book! It's new and fresh for me.

The new series sound like fun!

Reading Problem said...

Hi Megan,
Honestly, I love your writing, and I also like any science fiction & Zombie, movie, book, etc.

Nice Blog!

Marcellina R.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Megan! The new book sounds great! I love your other work, and I expect this to be just as good.

Unfortunately, I dislike zombie fiction. They freak me out and tend to give me nightmares.

Missy H.

TheReadingB said...

I love your books!!! Great post!

I don't read zombie fiction, but I really enjoy movie or television shows based on them.

Thanks Megan!

Brie R.