Peripeteia is here!

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Peripeteia is now available on Kindle!

Thank you all for reading, and for being excited, and for waiting so patiently! The print book will come in a week or two, and the audiobook in about three months. I’ll keep you posted as I know.

Happy reading!


Peripeteia: The Soundtrack

If you’ve been around here a while, you know how I roll. Music makes the writing better for me, and I hope it makes the book better for you.

So, here we go again. And, as before, these artists have no idea who I am and have not agreed to be part of my make-believe world. But too bad for them. *sticks out tongue*

I’ve tried to be as spoiler-free as possible:

This first one is a song I listened to on repeat while out walking last fall, when the book was really coming together in my head. Sometimes I have a song that puts me in a certain writing mood or allows my mind to wander over the characters and story. And, I admit, I’m also excited to force people to listen to it–meaning YOU people. So listen! I’m pretty sure you’re gonna want to have a dance party. But the lyrics are awesome (and apt), too.
“Let it Happen” Tame Impala


Chapter 3. Interference Team A and the fire escape.
“War on the East Coast” The New Pornographers


Chapter five. Although, if you want it to be realistic, you should bring it to a screeching halt midway through. Heh. Try as I might, I couldn’t find you a video for this one.
“Crush” Sleigh Bells


Sylvie and Maria. Chapter 27. This song is so lovely and sad and uplifting and just…life.
“Should Have Known Better” Sufjan Stevens


Chapters 22 & 23. For whatever reason, the image of this song being played over those entire scenes both works (in my opinion, of course) and cracks me up.
“The Only Living Boy in New York” Simon and Garfunkel


Chapter 29. “And since there’s a good chance I won’t live to a ripe old age, I don’t want to waste time.”
“On My Way Back Home” Band of Horses


The second half of chapter 29. What can I say? Chapter 29 needed two songs.
“Rawnald Gregory Erickson the Second” STRFKR


Chapter 45. “Because you might as well dance while you wait.”
I just love this song. Try not to move while you listen to it–not gonna happen.
“El Dia De Suerte” Hector Lavoe and Willie Colon
And, if you’re interested, here are some translated lyrics, although you can find many differing translations. But you’ll get the gist: El Dia De Suerte


Chapter 62. I think you’ll know which part of the chapter I mean.
“I Will Follow You Into the Dark” Death Cab for Cutie



Chapter 79. The pond. Here’s the song I forgot at first posting. It’s not like I haven’t listened to it a zillion times in the past decade or anything, and especially in the past year. *sigh* Those of you who know me well are not surprised by this bit of scatterbrained-osity. (New word!) I love this song so much, and I love it so much for this scene, that I feel guilty about its omission, although, yes, I am aware the song has no feelings. Maybe.

But I’m sorry anyway, “Is This Love?” by Clap Your Hands Say Yeah. I hope you can forgive me. xoxo


Chapter 79. The Vale of Cashmere.
“Videotape” Radiohead
If you’ve been around Radiohead a while, you know this song has had many incarnations. I loved the more intense live versions that came before the studio version, but I also love the studio version, and that’s the version that best fits this part. Anyway, I couldn’t find the official studio version online, but this is basically it, only live. And it’s just as good because Thom Yorke always sounds freaking amazing. (Have I ever mentioned I love Radiohead? Yeah, I didn’t think so.)


Chapters 87-89. That’s all I’m gonna say about that.
“Wolf Like Me” TV on the Radio


Chapter 90. Again, my lips are sealed.
I just love this song so much, and I have for years. This is one of those songs you want played at your memorial. Or I do, at least.
“The Trapeze Swinger” Iron and Wine


The very, very end of the very last chapter. This was the only video I could find of this song’s studio version.
“Next Exit” Interpol 

The map of SPSZ.

All right, so I wanted to put this map into the ebook of Peripeteia, but, after a long battle, it wasn’t working properly. Whenever I get an ebook that has a map I can’t view as closely as I desire, or is blurry, I get frustrated. I imagined finally getting it into the file only to have y’all not able to see it in detail, and I decided to save you the angst. So, really, I did it for you guys.
Also, I’m lazy.

In any event, here’s a map of Sunset Park Safe Zone for your viewing/reading pleasure.

Sunset Park Map Final Flat

Mordacious: The Soundtrack

As usual, I have some songs for this book. Not as many as with my other books because someone (*cough* Eric *cough*) demanded his own adventures, and some of my originally-planned scenes and their songs became part of book two. But, after hearing what he had to say, I think it was worth it. And just think of all the lovely songs you’ll get next time.

So, here we go (And, as before, these artists are not affiliated with me in any way and may be horrified that I’ve chosen to co-opt their works for my stories. Sorry, folks!). I tried to be as spoiler-free as possible:


This works in a few scenes, both in this book and the next, but, really, this song is  just Sylvie.
“Hold On, Hold On” Neko Case.



The hospital roof. “A genocide. A populicide.”
“This Bright Flash” M83



A backyard in Philly.
“Street Spirit (Fade Out)” Radiohead (Of course there’s a Radiohead song. There always is.)



Eric on his way home.
“Clinically Dead” Chad Vangaalen



“Anyone who makes a joke on his deathbed deserves to live.”
You might think this song is weird at first. I forgive you. But listen to it again and you’ll hear. You’ll hear. And, if that’s not enough to convince you, I couldn’t have said it better myself:
With patience, you could piece together a playlist that chronologically represents everything that’s ever happened to you– birthdays and funerals, weddings and break-ups, workdays and trips abroad, all of it. Or you could simply cut to the chase and put on “Hope There’s Someone”, where we experience the fullness of a lifespan in a few overpowering minutes.
-Brian Howe, Pitchfork

“Hope there’s Someone” Antony and the Johnsons.



Sylvie and Grace. “New York has become a city of whispers and groans.”
“The Penalty” Beirut.



Vale of Cashmere. “I miss that girl.”
Remember how terrible (and amazing) and awful (and wonderful) and tedious (and freeing) it was to be a teenager? Even with all of that, sometimes we miss it.
“Anthems for a Seventeen-Year-Old Girl” Broken Social Scene



Sylvie. Last chapter. The lyrics of this song. The end of this song. This song. Perfect.
“Wake” The Antlers.

Mordacious is here!

After a long wait (believe me, I know–you guys are saints) Mordacious is available in the Kindle store!

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Thank you so much for your patience and support and all of your kind words. I hope you enjoy the first book of the new story!

For those of you waiting for the audiobook, I’m so excited to tell you that I’ve signed with Audible Studios to create the audio versions of The City Series. The first book is a few months away, but I know it’ll be worth the wait! 

On Research

If you haven’t yet read All the Stars in the Sky, you might find this post to be spoiler-y, so close your eyes!

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  Alaska, 2014

On research, and some thank yous.

One reason All the Stars in the Sky felt like it took longer to write (besides its length) is that I did a ton of research. I spent a hundred, if not hundreds, of hours on Google Maps. I virtually drove through much of Canada and Alaska, so much so that when I finally went to Alaska this past summer and my husband and I drove through Wasilla, I thought to myself, “I’ve been here before.” I knew where I was, knew what was ahead, and knew that I had probably spent far too long on Google Maps than was healthy.

But I wanted ATSITS to be realistic. I wanted to be in that RV with our group. And besides the obstacles I created—zombies and the like—I’d say 90% or more of the places they stopped were real. The houses in which they stayed, the towns, the stores, the bridges and rivers, the lake and the roads are all there, if you ever wanted to find them. And, like James and Mark, I also have a well-thumbed back roads atlas of Canada.

Part of the reason research is so much fun is that it brings up ideas you never would’ve considered. In regard to the conveniently placed fireworks stands, those are there. And I never would have known it had I not driven the route down to Anchorage myself and thought, “Holy crap, I could so use those fireworks!”

I figured out and kept a running list of mileage, vehicle MPGs, and amount of gas found. I kept lists of food. I asked questions of random internet people and managed to persuade the amazingly kind Director of Distribution of Bi-Mart to allow me into his distribution center to get the lay of the land (Thanks, John!). I forced Canadians to tell me about their cities (Thanks, Jessica and Lindsay!) and made a dentist answer a few questions about the amount of medical training dentists receive (Thanks, Melissa!). I spent two hours researching boat lifts for four paragraphs of writing, I researched the mechanisms of loading doors (also known as rolling doors—who knew?) and thermal cutting (which was not a viable option for our gang), among many other random things. Hey, I’m not complaining. It’s a lot of fun.

I tried my hardest to cover every base and to at least to pretend I knew what I was talking about. But if you find any errors, they’re mine and mine alone. Don’t blame my lovely, helpful readers or the Google Corporation for my mistakes.

I wanted you to feel as if you were traveling along the road with Cassie and the others, to see what they saw, to get a glimpse of what it might actually be like to journey through a wasteland of a world. I wanted it to feel as realistic as possible—you know, for zombies. I sure hope I succeeded.


All the Stars in the Sky–The Soundtrack

As usual, I have a book soundtrack. And, as usual, I’m sharing it with you. So put in your earbuds and have a listen if you’d like.

I keep the scenes (if it does belong to a scene) very vague so as not to post spoilers. I’m a little crazy about spoilers. I HATE spoilers. Death to spoilers! Although I’ll tell someone a spoiler IF THEY ASK because it’s kind of fun.

I’ve done my best to find videos without commercials that you have to sit through while tapping your fingers. Because I hate commercials. Maybe even more than spoilers–nope, I hate spoilers more.
I tried, but YouTube likes to toss out an ad where before there was none, so forgive me.

Some of these are bands I’ve used before, and I’ve used them again (but a different song) because they’re just that good. Don’t take my word for it–listen. But I digress. So, here’s the music:

“Realize it’s not the Sun” -Hooray for Earth


Outside Winnipeg.
“Prelude in C Major from The Well-Tempered Clavier” -Bach


This song is driving through the abandoned towns, past zombies and bodies and cars. And I found you the lyrics video, made by Arcade Fire. (Because I also hate inaccurate lyrics. Geez, someone’s touchy today, no?)
“Afterlife” -Arcade Fire


The mountains. The thunderstorm. Good grief, I love this song.
If one could marry a band, I might just marry Beach House. Seriously.
“Wild” -Beach House


The back of a pickup on a starry night.
You might not like trance music. You might not, but I think you’ll like this one.
When you read the scene, you might understand.
“Big Sky” -John O’Callaghan feat. Audrey Gallagher (Armin van Buuren’s Intro edit)


And, if you just can’t do the one above (C’mooon, please?), I found you the acoustic version. But you’re missing out.


The mountains. Salvation. Maybe.
“Teen Angst” -M83


This one goes out to Peter Spencer.
“Don’t Worry Baby” -The Beach Boys


The distribution center. Lots and lots of zombies.
“Breezeblocks” -alt-J


“I’m surrounded by beauty and horror and suffering and love. I was before the virus, but they were never quite so present and closely intertwined.”
“Reckoner” -Radiohead


New Year’s Eve. That’s all I’ll say. This song is just…sigh.
“Last minute” -Hooray for Earth (And, while you’re at it, you should just listen to the entire album of True Loves.)


The epilogue.
Man, this song is freaking great. And perfect.
“Headlights Look Like Diamonds” -Arcade Fire


Well, there you go.

Guest Post and Giveaway on My Book Addiction

Come check out my guest post on My Book Addiction, where I’ve created a handy-dandy flowchart to see if you’ll survive the zompoc:

And then swing by zOctober 2014 on Facebook for some fun and hijinks the whole month of October. You know you want to!

Summer of Zombie Blog Tour: Rhonda Parrish – Why I Still Love Zombies


Have you STILL not joined the Summer of Zombie Blog Tour? What are you waiting for? Okay, I’ll wait.

Good, you’re back. Now here’s a guest post from the lovely Rhonda Parrish. She even wrote us a poem! The last stanza made me laugh.


 Why I (Still) Love Zombies

by Rhonda Parrish

“You still like zombies?” she asked, taking a sip of her designer coffee and looking at me like something she scraped off her shoe. “But they are so overdone!”

And sure, recently there has been a freaking huge influx of zombified fiction (book-shaped and otherwise). And no, when we get around to it in the alphabet anthologies I’m editing I won’t be making Z is for Zombie, but you’re damned right I still loves me some zombies.

I’ve been fascinated with zombies since I was about eight years old. That’s when, at a family Christmas dinner, my cousins, siblings and I found my uncle’s copy of Dawn of the Dead and popped it into the VCR. Oh. My. Gawd. As soon as I watched the woman throw herself at the zombie that used to be her husband and him tear a chunk out of her shoulder? Dude. I was in love.

Over the years my zombie love (which is an awesome movie btw — Zombie Love (2007)) has remained strong, but not unchanged.

When I was younger I loved zombies for the gore that was associated with them. Then I went through a stage of being all about the symbolism of zombies, and their uncanny nature. These days, though the gore and the (ahem) “deeper meanings” to zombie fiction still hold an attraction for me, I think the main reason I love them is this:

White Noise

Every station
ran the same thing
over and over
“This is not a test!”
All but one.

A Christian station
Sermons interspersed with donation calls
twenty four hours a day.

An atheist, she still listened
if only to hear a human voice
express an emotion
other than fear.

Still, looking out at the undead
shambling masses that filled the street
she had to chuckle when the preacher
offered eternal life
as some sort of reward.

That’s a poem I wrote a while back, and I think it captures it. I’m scared of dying, but zombies give me this whole other thing to be afraid of. Something worse than death — undeath. And they give it to me in a safe way. It is rather unlikely I’m going to see the apocalypse, right? In a weird way, I think that helps me come to terms with the fact that, like it or not, someday I am going to die.

Not to mention there’s that whole “apocalypse” part of the zombie apocalypse. C’mon, who doesn’t love playing with the idea of the end of the world?

My most recent zombie release isn’t overtly apocalyptic though, not in the traditional sense of the word, anyway. It’s all about seeing the funny in zombies. Waste Not (And Other Funny Zombie Stories) is a collection of three of my funny zombie stories. It’s got revenge, the zombie uprising from the point of view of a cat AND zombie munchkins. It’s tough to be afraid of death when you’re laughing along at zombie stories, amirite?


Rhonda’s blog, updated weekly, is at and her twitter, updated far more frequently, is at

Book link:

Goodreads link:

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The stench of rotting flesh is in the air! Welcome to the Summer of Zombie Blog Tour 2014, with 33 of the best zombie authors spreading the disease in the month of June.

Stop by the event page on Facebook so you don’t miss an interview, guest post or teaser… and pick up some great swag as well! Giveaways galore from most of the authors as well as interaction with them! #SummerZombie

AND so you don’t miss any of the posts in June, here’s the complete list, updated daily: