I know I'm in my own little world, but it's OK.
They know me here...


Saturday, October 30, 2010

Welcome to the Dark Side!

A group of writers, myself included, have banded together to create DarkSide DownUnder - a blogsite of mostly RWOz and RWNZ members who love writing speculative fiction with romantic elements, whether it's fantasy, paranormal, urban fantasy, futuristic and everything in between.

Posts will feature things like Good News Tuesday, book launches, blog topics, give-aways and DarkLight on...(aka spotlight on one of our members or guests).

Our list of writers include:
With Halloween fast approaching (October 31st), we thought we'd launch our site then. For anyone interested in these genres this is a site to bookmark!

Why don't you come over for a visit and we'll welcome you to the Dark Side! :-)

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Guest Author: Mel Teshco (CARNAL MOON release)

Who is Mel Teshco?
A brilliant scholar...tee-hee! Seriously, I like to think I’m an ordinary person writing extraordinary—or at least interesting— stories for readers to enjoy and love.

Who influenced you or what appeals to you about this genre?
I’m not sure I have any one influence, just a scarily big bunch of books I’ve read over too many years that have helped stimulate my rather active imagination.
I wrote my latest release CARNAL MOON for Ellora’s Cave, which is paranormal erotica. I love these sexy, darker style paranormals—another reason I also fitted right in to Harlequin’s Nocturne (Bites) line.

Share a bit about your next release, when's it out and where can we buy it?
CARNAL MOON is out October 28th, 2010 through Ellora’s Cave. It is a werewolf story set in the Sydney suburbs and government bush reserves.

Tell us a bit about the hero/heroine.
The hero is a powerful alpha male whose instinct is to mate and populate the dwindling werewolf population. The heroine is in love with her mortal lawyer boyfriend, but cannot resist the 'calling' to mate with this male werewolf at the height of the full moon.

What’s next for you?
I have another werewolf story that will hopefully be released through Nocturne Bites soon. I’m also doing some frantic rewrites and polishing up of a single title book called BELIEVE, which will mean agent hunting very soon!
Other than that I’m writing an alien story for Ellora’s Cave which features three heroes :-) , and I have around three chapters of another single title started (so excited by this – one of those spine-tingling moments you have when an idea takes hold and won’t let go!).
And last but not least, the start of another possible Nocturne bites story... LOL!!! I really do need to focus!

Where can we find you next? 
28th October - LoveCats DownUnder


Only on the first night of each full moon, werewolves cannot resist the calling, an instinctual need to mate. Living a double life has never been difficult for Holly, but in her world, if her species is to survive, all she can look forward to is down-and-dirty, uninhibited sex with a difference partner each month. She has never had a reason to complain though. Until now.

She's fallen for Ricky Mandela, her human lover. Holly can't pretend she has a chance at a family and happily ever after. these are human dreams. But she can't give him up either. Will she have to lie and cheat to hold on to the man she loves? 

Mel's other books:

You can find out more about Mel on her website.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Agents, editors & book deals...oh, my!

Ever get the feeling you've been overwhelmed by something big and by the time you stop to take stock of yourself it's too late and you find that it's swallowed you whole?

Does the avalanche analogy springs to mind?

Well, these last couple of weeks have been a bit like that. Without boring you with too many details, I'm VERY pleased and excited to announce that I now have an agent - Elaine Spencer of The Knight Agency; an editor - Leis Pederson, and a three-book deal with the Berkley Publishing Group (in the USA).

Anyone who knows a writer and the time and effort they go through to break into the publishing industry will understand just what a HUGE thrill it is and just how EXCITED I am in being able to share this news.

So, what's in the near future besides more writing? Definitely some steep learning curves and the start of an exciting career as a published author. Wow, wow, wow!

Hi world, I'm Kylie Griffin - Berkley's newly discovered paranormal romance author!

October Blog Anniversary (THE END)

Hard to believe October is almost over. It's been a great month - lots of fun, some good-read give-aways, and people coming to the party!

This is my last free give-away - two (2) books again - OUTCAST by Joan Johnston & PRINCE INCOGNITO by Linda Goodnight.

Simple Q&A today - whether you're a writer or reader, what have you enjoy reading about in my blog over this past month/year?

Is it the guest authors who drop in? The odd book review? Promotion of new authors? Some of the craft articles? Finding out information about the romance industry? Photos of conferences or my travels? The free give-aways?

Share your thoughts by 31st October (midnight Aussie EST) and you could win the last draw of my October Blog Anniversary. !!! Don't forget to leave a contact email address or check back in on the day I announce the winner! If you haven't claimed the prize in 48hrs I'll draw another name from my coffee cup.

Thanks, everyone, for helping me celebrate a Year of Blogging!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

RWOz Conference Book Pack Winner!

I cleaned out my coffee cup (it's been getting a bit of a workout the last few days) and threw in everyone's name.

Congratulations to...

Julieann Thomas

Just contact me at kyliegriffin (at) clearmail (dot) com (dot) au and we can arrange to get those books to you!

Happy Reading!

Saturday, October 23, 2010


This weekend I head south to a lovely Spring wedding!

(throwing handfuls of rice)
Michelle & Scott!

At 11.30am today, my sister and new brother-in-law tie the knot and start their lives as wife & husband. We're celebrating in fine style with family and friends with a cocktail style reception after the ceremony.

Here's to many, many years of love and happiness, my little sister and BIL!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

PROMO: Mel Teshco

Get out your red pen and circle October 28th.

Why? Mel Teshco returns to my blog to promote CARNAL MOON, her new release from Ellora's Cave!

Only on the first night of each full moon, werewolves cannot resist the calling, an instinctual need to mate. Living a double life has never been difficult for Holly, but in her world, if her species is to survive, all she can look forward to is down-and-dirty, uninhibited sex with a different partner each month. She has never had reason to complain though. Until now.

She’s fallen for Ricky Mandela, her human lover. Holly can’t pretend she has a chance at a family and happily ever after. Those are human dreams. But she can’t give him up either. Will she have to lie and cheat to hold on to the man she loves?

Can't wait for her visit!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

LINCOLN'S SWORD Prize Winner! (Close Encounters Book Review)



You have just won -
  • LINCOLN'S SWORD by Debra Doyle & James D. MacDonald

Send your postal address to kyliegriffin (at) clearmail (dot) com (dot) au and I'll post them to you ASAP.


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

More RWOz Conference

A smattering of odds and sods photos from the Romance Writers of Australia conference.

And two (2) more free books to give-away to celebrate my month-long October Blog Anniversary! Just tell me what's your favourite part about going to a conference or convention (World Con, Comic Con, RWA, RWOz, RWNZ, etc.)?

Make sure you leave a comment by 23rd October (midnight EST) and you'll go into the draw.

!!! Don't forget to leave a contact email address or check back in on the day I announce the winner! If you haven't claimed the prize in 48hrs I'll draw another name from my coffee cup.

RWA theme for the conference

Paula Roe @ the ARRA signing event

Kris P., the RWNZ exec. rep. from across the ditch

The gorgeous table dec's for the Awards dinner

Bec S. clowning around...or is she?
Erin & I enjoying a cocktail or two

Sunday, October 17, 2010

COLTER'S WOMAN Prize Winner! (What are you reading/enjoying?)

It's always interesting finding out what everyone else is reading and enjoying. Did you find something new to try from the other comments? I did!

The autographed copy of COLTER'S WOMAN by Maya Banks goes to...


You have 48hrs to email me your postal address - kyliegriffin (at) clearmail (dot) com (dot) au - and I'll send it out to you.

Happy Reading!!!

Spring Fever!

Well, my cats are enjoying the warmer weather but with it comes Spring Fever.

Every year the three of them revert back to kittenhood and tear round the garden chasing each other, leaping after insects, ferreting under bushes, acting as "great hunters" as they pursue lizards through the mulch, lose their winter coats (usually all over me or the lounge) and stare up into the shrubs as birds feast on the pollen in the flowers.

Furball - on the carport lattice wall
 Furball's favourite spot is parking his furry butt in the shade near the carport to watch the world go by from there.

But he's always within safe fleeing distance of under the house in case something strange frightens him - yes, he's the wuss of the feline family.

Panda loves heights
Panda prefers any good fence post so she can stare into the grass and listen to the mysterious rustlings below her. She's the Indiana Jones cat - always out and about looking for adventure, exploring the gully, the sheep paddock across the laneway, the house across the road, the abandoned chicken pen next door...

Splat the guard cat
While Splat wanders through the laneway and back yard playing sentinel, making sure no intruder slips by her vigiliant watch - she can often be found curled up asleep on the mulch at various places around the garden. Great guard cat!

Do you have a pet with personality? What's their favourite pasttime?

Friday, October 15, 2010


I'm not usually a huge fan of first person romance novels (and this is the second one I've read recently that I've really liked).

Hat's off to Katherine Allred for her ALIEN AFFAIRS:CLOSE ENCOUNTERS novel. From the start I was gripped by her heroine, Kiera, and the world-building.

What caught me first was the blurb - I have an interest in genetic-engineering, nothing too scientific, more along the lines of how manipulating traits and giving a character certain talents or enhanced abilities would play out within the context of a story. Would the character see them as a strength or weakness? How would other characters view the same? How would something like that impact a story line?

Allred's heroine - Keira Smith - is a GEP, a genetically engineered person (a woman grown in a laboratory). She has a host of superior physical abilities but even more advanced than you average GEP. So much so she views herself as a freak among freaks and sees it as a disadvantage in a universe that already sees her kind as unusual.

The story revolves around her coming to realise and accept these super-abilities, she's the key to saving an indigenous race threatened with genocide from a powerful corporation driven by greed and profit.

The world-building and the complexities of the external plot were compelling but it was Allred's character that sucked me into the pages. I couldn't put the book down and read it in a night. If you're looking for a good SFR (sci-fi romance) book then check out this series!

Here's the blurb:

Keira Smith is not like ordinary Genetically Engineered Persons...
The Bureau of Alien Affairs needed a special GEP agent with empathic abilities to handle their most extraordinary assignments--and a rogue geneticist saw to it that Kiera fit their specifications. But she turned out stronger, faster, smarter, and more impervious to harm than anyone anticipated. A reluctant “superhero,” Kiera wishes she were normal, but it is not to be.
On Orpheus 2, the indigenous Buri race faces extinction, a prospect the powerful Dynatec corporation welcomes and, in fact, may be actively hastening. As a special agent for the Bureau of Alien Affairs, it is Kiera’s job to protect these beautiful, exotic aliens…and to discover what there is on Orpheus 2 that Dynatec feels is worth killing for.
But the magnetic allure of the breathtaking Buri leader is proving a dangerous distraction. And now, to save Thor’s people, Kiera will need a power she’s never before possessed--something hidden in the unexplored recesses of her heart.

There's also a second book in the series - ALIEN AFFAIRS:CLOSE CONTACT.

GEP's just want to have fun...
A Genetically Engineered Person and self-proclaimed "party girl," Echo Adams loves her diplomatic job entertaining alien bigwigs for the Galactic Federation.But the Bureau of Alien Affairs has discovered she's much more than she thinks-that a rogue scientist endowed her with skills and psi abilities dwarfing those of common GEPs. And suddenly Echo's luxury life is over, replaced with a far more dangerous one: a special agent expected to not only chase bad guys, but eliminate them.
Echo's hates being stuck on Madrea-a planet of technophobes off limits to Federation visitors-hunting for a stolen quartz crystal with a powerful alien lifeform embedded inside. She despises the Bureau's restrictive rules-especially the one warning her away from the dangerously seductive Commander of the King's Forces. And if she doesn't learn how to use her alleged super-psi powers soon, her partying days-in fact all of her days-will be over for good.

Check out Katherine's website.

Time for another free give-away in my October Blog Anniversary celebration! Tell me, what catches your eye when you pick up a book - is the cover, the author's name, the back cover blurb, or reading the first few pages of the book?

Answer the question by October 19th (midnight Aussie EST) and you'll go into the draw for LINCOLN's SWORD by Debra Doyle & James D.MacDonald.

!!! Don't forget to leave a contact email address or check back in on the day I announce the winner! If you haven't claimed the prize in 48hrs I'll draw another name from my coffee cup.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Lords of Satyr Prize Winner! (Sci-Fi Romance Challenge)

Thanks to everyone who took part in the Sci-Fi Romance Challenge.

Without further ado, the winner of Elizabeth Amber's Lords of Satyr books is...

Jess Anastasi

Jess, email me your snail mail address - kyliegriffin (at) clearmail (dot) com (dot) au - and I'll post them out to you!

Have fun reading!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

What are you reading and enjoying?

Sometimes we forget in the busyness of life to take time for ourselves and do something we enjoy. I love getting out and spending time in my garden, creating patchwork (not that I've done a lot of that lately) and curling up with a good book.

There are times I get so busy I don't read for weeks. It's only when the stress levels get to unmanageable that I realise I've ignored my need for down-time. I've become to tangled up in "everything else". That's when I make an effort to pick up a book from my To Be Read pile and spend a few hours escaping.

So, have you been taking time out to read for pleasure? And if not, why not?

And continuing in the spirit of my October Blog Anniversary month, a free give-away* will go to one commenter (local or international) who can tell me about a book you've recently read and why you enjoyed it.

Just a couple of sentences, it doesn't have to be an essay. Was it the character/s you identified with, the excitement of the plot, the interesting setting, a favourite theme running through the book? Leave a comment along these lines by midnight (Aussie EST) 16th October, and you'll go into the draw!

*Give-away prize is an autographed copy of COLTER'S WOMAN by Maya Banks.

!!! Don't forget to leave a contact email address or check back in on the day I announce the winner! If you haven't claimed the prize in 48hrs I'll draw another name from my coffee cup.

Monday, October 11, 2010

SUGAR & SPICE Prize Winner! (from Business Card post)

A copy of SUGAR & SPICE by Leda Swann will be winging it's way by Aussie Post to...

Mel Teshco

To claim your prize please email me - kyliegriffin (at) clearmail (dot) com (dot) au

Congratulations, I hope you enjoy the book!

Sunday, October 10, 2010


Thank you to everyone who visited and helped make Erica's release date for POISON KISSED so much fun!

Without further ado, I've drawn a name from my clean coffee cup, and the winner of the free copy of POSION KISSED is...

Jo Mc

If you could contact me using this email address (kyliegriffin at clearmail dot com dot au) no spaces - I'll arrange the details of getting the book to you.

Congratulations & happy reading!

Paranormal Prize winner! (Book Review of TBPOD by K.Gay)

Thanks to everyone for dropping by and checking out my review on Kelly Gay's debut book, THE BETTER PART OF DARKNESS and very happy to see I've convinced a couple of you to try it out!

The name drawn from my clean coffee cup is...

Helene Young

Congratulations! I hope you enjoy the books!

To collect your paranormal book prizes
  • The Accidental Vampire - Lynsay Sands
  • Lincoln's Sword - Debra Doyle & James D.MacDonald
email me - kyliegriffin (at) clearmail (dot) com (dot) au - no spaces - within the next 48hrs, with your postal address and I'll send them off in the mail.

Congratulations & happy reading!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Have you read a good sci-fi romance lately?

It's great to see sci-fi/futuristic romance cultivating an interest with people and long may it continue. There's nothing like picking up a good SFR novel.

Same goes for SF movies with romantic elements. Look at some of the ones that have been released recently (and a few fav's from the past):
  • Avatar
  • The Time Traveller
  • Terminator Salvation
  • Transformers 1 & 2
  • Gattaca
  • Star Man
  • The Matrix Trilogy
  • Star Wars 1-6
  • Dark Angel TV series
  • Jericho TV series
  • Farscape TV series
  • Firefly TV series & Serenity
Have you read a good SFR novel lately? Want to?

I know just the spot to find a galaxy of authors who write them - the Science Fiction Romance Brigade (of which I'm a member - yes, this is a plug, I'm totally biased :-D ). We have a mix of published and unpublished authors.

The SFRB has a website and blog and our purpose is to have fun, network with like-minded writers, build our name recognition and future reader base, and socialize with other SFR NG ("next generation") writers who love science fiction romance.

So, head on over to either site and check us out, and if you're so inclined, become a member! And while you're there check out our authors and their SFR novels in the member links listed on our blog. You just never know what great books you might find!

And for some more October Blog Anniversary goodness - if you can leave a comment and the name of one SFRB member (besides myself!) in your comment, you'll go into the draw for three of Elizabeth Amber's Lords of Satyr series! Comments close October 13th (midnight Aussie EST).

!!! Don't forget to leave a contact email address or check back in on the day I announce the winner! If you haven't claimed the prize in 48hrs I'll draw another name from my coffee cup.

* Top picture taken from http://fantasyartdesign.com"> Fantasy Art 3D Wallpapers, digital art modern online gallery.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Business Cards

Prior to writing conference time there's a lot of talk about what sort of business card a writer needs and what information should go on it.

After reading many e-messages and chatting with others going to conference, I went with simple and professional - author name, brand line, website address and email. I decided to have mine professionally printed rather than DIY, but this choice is entirely up to you.

Things not to put on your business card:
  • personal address
  • personal phone number/s
  • personal email address
  • a background that obscures your information
When handing out your business card, and depending on the situation, you can always pen any personal information on the back.

So, what's your business card look like? What sort of information do you have on yours? Share (by midnight Aussie EST, 10th October) and you'll go into the draw for Leda Swann's book, SUGAR & SPICE.

!!! Don't forget to leave a contact email address or check back in on the day I announce the winner! If you haven't claimed the prize in 48hrs I'll draw another name from my coffee cup.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

REVIEW: The Better Part of Darkness by Kelly Gay

There I am, at my first RWA® conference in Orlando, Florida, a total stranger in the line gathering for breakfast at the Walt Disney World Dolphin Resort Pikabu restaurant. Ahead of me is a lady wearing a conference lanyard and nametag. So, what do I do? I say g'day and strike up a conversation.

This is how I first met Kelly Gay, urban fantasy author, and double finalist for a 2010 RITA® Award. We sat together and shared a very pleasant hour or so talking about writing, publishing, the industry and a few other topic, as you do at a writers' conference -lol!

To cut a long story short, I bought her debut book, THE BETTER PART OF DARKNESS, and have now found a new author to read and stalk...umm...I mean follow. I'd like to share what I enjoyed about the book and, hopefully, convince you to give it a go!

MAIN CHARACTER: Charlie Madigan, divorced mother of one. I love the fact Charlie isn't your usual single, teen or twenty-something, kick-ass heroine. She's been married, is still coming to terms with her divorce, and struggling to balance her job and home life, and raise a daughter. The entire story is written from her POV as a first person narrative.

HEROINE'S OCCUPATION: A cop who works for the Intergration Task Force, an organisation of humans and off-worlders who work together to provide law enforcement for all races.

SETTING: Earth but with alternate dimensions (called Elysia and Charbydon) and off-worlders who live among us.
Not only are there other beings existing and visiting our Earth but some humans also have supernatural abilities (like Charlie) or have a talent (like Bryn, Charlie's sister, who wields magic).
There's a bit of a Men In Black feel to the story - with humorous elements sprinkled in, but there's definitely a much grittier, darker overtone - one I REALLY enjoyed. Gray's world building is seemlessly integrated into the story and incredibly believable.

SECONDARY CHARACTERS: Hank - Charlie's off-worlder partner. He's a siren, a useful skill in police work, particularly during an interrogation when all he has to do is use his voice and the criminals are busting to tell him the truth!

Bryn - Charlie's wiccan sister who owns a magic shop with a unique security system.

Emma - Charlie's young daughter, who's as strong and brave as her mother (no spoilers, but she shines through in the last part of the story).

Mynogan - the off-worlder villain who wants to rule both worlds. You know he's a meglomaniacal bad guy but every action he takes, every twist to the plot is entirely believable. As a reader, you dread the next scene with him in it. You fear for Charlie and her friends because you know whenever he appears the stakes are raised. They're not going to be able to stop him easily, they're really going to have to work to defeat him. Gray achieves this evil/convincing villain balance very well.

Carreg - an off-worlder politican with suspect motives. He reminded me of Garrak, from Star Trek DS9. As the story progressed you never quite knew whether he was an ally or someone not to be trusted (again, no more than this or I'll spoil the story).

Will - Charlie's ex-husband. He adds a slight romantic element to the plot, until he ends up selling his soul to a spirit entity called Rex.

Rex - a Revenant, a spirit who granted Will's greatest wish in exchange for his soul. An unexpected ally who teams with Charlie & her friends. His character adds a touch of humor to the story.

Aaron - a human Mage who's in love with Bryn.

PLOT: Gray's characterisation of Charlie makes her undeniably appealing and you empathise with every step of her journey as she tries to unravel the dual mysteries of the ash-related deaths (an off-world narcotic) and her own personal conflict of dealing with her unexplained revival and evolution of strange powers after a near-death experience.

The sub-plot layering and gripping tension drags you from one chapter to the next and I found it impossible to put the book down. In fact, I resented any interruption and ended up taking the phone off the hook and ignoring the outside world just so I could keep reading to the end.

THE BETTER PART OF DARKNESS has a blend of paranormal, suspense and romantic elements that satisfies any fans of the urban fantasy genre. While this is the first in a series, the resolution/ending is solid but, be warned, it does leave you wanting to know what's in store for Charlie next.

I've already ordered THE DARKEST EDGE OF DAWN, the second in the Charlie Madigan series and can't wait to read it. I suspect to become very anti-social again once I delve into the pages.

Charlie Madigan is a divorced mother of one, and a kick-ass cop trained to take down the toughest human and off-world criminals. She's recently returned from the dead after a brutal attack, an unexplained revival that has left her plagued by nightmares and random outbursts of strength that make doing her job for Atlanta P.D.'s Integration Task Force even harder. 
Since the Revelation, the criminal element in Underground Atlanta has grown, leaving Charlie and her partner Hank to keep the chaos to a dull roar. But now an insidious new danger is descending on her city with terrifying speed, threatening innocent lives: a deadly, off-world narcotic known as ash. 
Charlie is determined to uncover the source of ash before it targets another victim. But can she protect those she loves from a force more powerful than heaven and hell combined? 

To read an excerpt, click here.

Deep beneath Underground a cunning bid for power and revenge has begun, one that threatens to make Atlanta the new battleground in the ultimate confrontation between heaven and hell. 
The powers of hellish Charbydon have the upper hand after plunging the city into primordial night. And under the cover of darkness, a serial killer targets the most powerful Elysian’s in the city, the angelic Adonai. 
For detective Charlie Madigan and her siren partner Hank, tracking deadly predators is all in a day’s work. But this case will test the limits of their strength and friendship as it draws them into a deadly world of power plays, ancient myths, explosive secrets, and a race against time that risks all that Charlie holds dear.

To read an excerpt, click here.

Want to know more about Kelly Gay? Check out her website.

If you've already read her series, let me know what you think. If you haven't, have I convinced you to try the book?

Leave a comment by midnight (Aussie EST) 9th October and you'll go into the draw for two (2) paranormal romance books(in deference to Kelly I won't name these books/authors).

Friday, October 1, 2010

A Year of Blogging


It'll be a year to the day on October 6th since I started my blog.

I hope the posts have been informative and fun to read. There's certainly been plenty of topics to cover and discuss. My favourites have been, and always will be, the guest authors - it's always a hoot interviewing and learning more about them.

Thank you to everyone who has dropped by to leave comments or lend their support in any way.

To celebrate, I'm giving away free books all this month! To be in the draws just read the posts, answer my questions or challenges and leave a comment - Aussie locals and overseas visitors are welcome to participate!

The books will be from a mix of authors and genres. Check out the list below.
  • Colters' Woman - Maya Banks
  • Outcast - Joan Johnston
  • The Accidental Vampire - Lynsay Sands
  • Red-Hot Australians:Outback Engagements - Margaret Way
  • Lincoln's Sword - Debra Doyle & James D.Macdonald
  • Wanted:A Father For Her Twins - Emily Forbes
  • Sugar & Spice - Leda Swann
  • Prince Incognito - Linda Goodnight
  • Nicholas - Elizabeth Amber
  • Raine - Elizabeth Amber
  • Lyon - Elizabeth Amber

Here's to another year of good things!