All posts by R. Parrish

Sign Up for the Giftmas 2019 Blog Tour

Every year I host a blog tour in December to benefit the Edmonton Food Bank. I call it the Giftmas Blog Tour and I would like to invite you to join me this year 🙂

The blog tour will take place from December 9th through December 16th and it will include:

  • A fundraiser for the Edmonton Food Bank
  • A snowman drawing contest
  • A Rafflecopter giveaway
  • Stories
  • Recipes
  • and more!

In December I will be looking for monetary donations but for right now what I’m looking for are bloggers and prizes.

To donate a prize to the Rafflecopter (which we use to encourage donations to the food bank and sharing on social media to spread the word about the tour/fundraiser) or for the snowman drawing contest all you need to do is follow the link at the bottom of this post and tell me what you’re donating.

Once the tour is over and I have the winner’s contact information I will send it to you and you will send them the prize you’ve donated.

In previous years prizes have included books, critiques, Tuckerizations, bookmarks, crafts, artwork… I think there was even cookies one year? So, basically, anything you can think of.

To participate in the blog tour you need to have a blog* and a willingness to write a blog for the tour.

We don’t have a theme this year (aside from the snowman drawing contest) so you can write about anything you want. Share cookie recipes, a holiday story (fiction or otherwise), try your hand at drawing a snowman, talk about favourite December activities, share a holiday playlist — whatever you want.

Each post will be required to share a link to the fundraiser for the Edmonton food bank and will be encouraged (but not required) to post the Rafflecopter code and information about the snowman drawing contest.

Easy peasy.

To sign up to participate in the blog tour, simply follow the link to the form below and fill it out.

If you have a day you’d prefer to blog on, include that on the form. If you don’t just put ‘N/A’ and I’ll ask you to cover whatever day has the fewest participants.

Sign-ups will close November 23rd so sign up to blog and/or donate a prize before then so you don’t miss out.

CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP

And thank you very much!

*however you define ‘blog’. Some people have used self-hosted elaborate blogs, some have used Goodreads and occasionally we’ve even had people use public Facebook posts

2019 Eligibility

I worked on some things this year which are eligible for awards.  Here is a quick and dirty list of those things 🙂

Short stories

  • “Blame it on the Bubble Gum”, In Places Between, IFWA, August 2019*
  • “Maxwell”, Kzine, September 2019

Poems

  • “Grampa Got Bit”, Horror Sleaze Trash, May 2019
  • “Avalanche”, Corvid Queen, August 2019
  • “Fulcrum Point”, Dreams & Nightmares, September 2019*
  • “No Affect”, Illumen, Autumn 2019

Anthologies

  • F is for Fairy, Poise and Pen Publishing, May 2019
  • Earth: Giants, Golems and Gargoyles, Tyche Books, August 2019
  • Grimm, Grit and Gasoline, World Weaver Press, September 2019 *

Long Form Editor

  • Haunting the Haunted by E.C. Bell, Tyche Books
  • The Cassandra Complex by Wendy Nikel, World Weaver Press
  • The Causality Loop by Wendy Nikel, World Weaver Press

I am also eligible for short form editor for my work in the aforementioned anthologies.

If you are nominating for any major awards (and I count the Auroras among those) and would like to read and consider any of my eligible works, get in touch and we’ll make it happen.

Thank you.

Release: The Causality Loop

I love this book.

I love this series.

The Causality Loop, which is out today, is the fourth and final installment in Wendy Nikel’s A Place in Time series. Like the three books that came before it, it’s a fun quick read. Super tight, super awesome.

I’ve been privileged to call myself the editor of these books and it’s bittersweet to watch the final one head out into the world.

Dodge Greenley is tired of being the go-between for his time-traveling family. All he wants is for them all to be able to live together peacefully in one era—is that too much to ask? But after breaking all the Rules of time travel in a desperate attempt to retroactively free his parents from the threat of the secret organization his father worked for a hundred years earlier, Dodge makes a startling discovery. It turns out there’s someone else stalking his family up and down the timeline, and this time, the menace may be coming from within the Place in Time Travel Agency itself.
​
Enlisting the help of his 22nd century coworker, Dodge sets off to the year 1915 to rescue his sister from a threat that might have originated at any point in their past, present, or future, proving once again that the greatest threat to time travelers is other time travelers.

Find it Online:
Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Books-A-Million
Goodreads
​Independent Bookstores
iTunes/Apple iBooks
Kobo

 

Get the first three books too if you’ve missed them 🙂

Grimm, Grit and Gasoline Release Day!

It’s here! It’s here! Release day is here!

I have been infatuated with this book since its conception and I continue to be in a love affair with it even now that it’s a reality. And that’s not nothing. Often, for me, the new, shiny, perfect thing which exists only in my imagination is far more beloved than the imperfect reality ever is, but not this time. This anthology continues to shine as brightly for me in reality as it did in my imagination, and I’m so incredibly pleased to finally be able to share it with you!

Dieselpunk and decopunk are alternative history re-imaginings of (roughly) the WWI and WWII eras: tales with the grit of roaring bombers and rumbling tanks, of ‘We Can Do It’ and old time gangsters, or with the glamour of flappers and Hollywood starlets, smoky jazz and speakeasies. The stories in this volume add fairy tales to the mix, transporting classic tales to this rich historical setting.

Two young women defy the devil with the power of friendship. The pilot of a talking plane discovers a woman who transforms into a swan every night and is pulled into a much more personal conflict than the war he’s already fighting. A pair of twins with special powers find themselves in Eva Braun’s custody and wrapped up in a nefarious plan. A team of female special agents must destroy a secret weapon–the spindle–before it can be deployed. Retellings of The Little Mermaid, Hansel and Gretel, Rapunzel, Cinderella, The Monkey King, Swan Lake, Pinocchio and more are all showcased alongside some original fairy tale-like stories.

Featuring stories by Zannier Alejandra, Alicia K. Anderson, Jack Bates, Patrick Bollivar, Sara Cleto, Amanda C. Davis, Jennifer R. Donohue, Juliet Harper, Blake Jessop, A.A. Medina, Lizz Donnelly, Nellie Neves, Wendy Nikel, Brian Trent, Alena Van Arendonk, Laura VanArendonk Baugh, Sarah Van Goethem, and Robert E. Vardeman.

Buy Your Copy Now:

Amazon
BN
Kobo
Apple

Although I didn’t get to share it with the world until today, I did get to share Grimm, Grit and Gasoline with some reviewers prior to its release. Here’s just a little sample of what they are saying:

“These unfailingly clever tales are impressive and page-turning, helping to correct the dearth of speculative fiction set in the interwar era. There is also a frequent and welcome spotlight on heroic women. Any reader who enjoys early-20th-century history or retold fairy tales will find these familiar but new, with well-played wonder in every story.”
—Publishers Weekly  (starred review)

“Magic mixes with grease and jazz in this fantastic new anthology that brims with strong heroines, diverse settings, and a heaping helping of Nazi-punching.”
—Nebula Award-nominated Beth Cato, author of Breath of Earth

“Get lost in the industrial and gritty world of this dieselpunk fairyland, filled with planes and tanks, intense emotion, and plenty of high-stakes action.”
—Reese Hogan, author of Shrouded Loyalties

“Grimm, Grit and Gasoline is proof positive that fairy tales are flexible and resilient… This anthology is more than a fresh coat of paint on an old body of literature. In the hands of its storytellers, fairy tales are subverted, remade, and offered up again as entertainment, inspiration, and counsel. A must-read for any folklore and fantasy enthusiast.”
—Ceallaigh S. MacCath-Moran, PhD Candidate in Folklore at Memorial University of Newfoundland

Cover Reveal: Eerie Edmonton

Full of ghosts and strange sights, Edmonton is a place rich in the paranormal. Or is it? Are there really spirits that lurk around Fort Edmonton and the provincial legislature? Do ghosts really haunt the halls of the University of Alberta, rushing off to classes that have long finished? Can paranormal echoes of the dark history of Charles Camsell Hospital still be felt within its walls today? What about the stories of the phantoms that loiter around the graveyards, bars, schools, and pools of the city?

In this collection of more than forty stories, Eerie Edmonton reveals the truth in the tales people tell and shines a spotlight on the city’s dark shadows and colourful past. Join Rhonda Parrish and Rona Anderson as they compare personal accounts of hauntings and paranormal activity with documented history and their own on-the-ground investigations.

I wasn’t actually sure how to handle this cover reveal, because the cover has been sort of unofficially revealed for a while now, but I official got the thumb’s up to share it just this week. And this week I have a lot of stuff going on on my blog and social media and I didn’t want this reveal to feel like an after thought, so I figured I should probably wait until after Grimm, Grit and Gasoline was out and not taking up so much space in my life.

But I’m also really impatient and I love this cover and didn’t want to sit on it.

So this morning when I woke up and stumbled, bleary-eyed to my desk I thought, “Why not?”

So here it is.

I love it.

The colours, the fonts, the Legislative Building right there front and centre. Love it 🙂

The book doesn’t come out until January, but you can add it to your Goodreads shelves right now.

It’s also available for pre-order:

Amazon

B&N

Kobo

In a couple months you should also be able to request it at your local library 🙂

Earth: Giants, Golems and Gargoyles Release Day :)

It’s release day!

Earth: Giants, Golems and Gargoyles is the second book in my Elemental Anthologies series and today is the day I get to send it out into the world. Yay!

We come from dust, and to dust we return…

Earth is steady. Solid. Reliable. It is the source of life and the thing which sustains it. But it’s not always serene and peaceful. It takes a lot to stir the earth but when it does, things get dramatic. Quakes swallow cities. Oceans rise. Mountains crumble. Earth is not weak, and it knows no pity.

Learn the strength of Earth and its creations in these eighteen stories, including: rusting dragons; mysterious summer jobs; magical inheritances; and dryads engaged in a bitter war.

Featuring: Jane Yolen; Chadwick Ginther; Kevin Cockle; Damascus Mincemeyer; Laura VanArendonk Baugh; Catherine Macleod; Mara Malins; Steve Toase; Suzanne J. Willis; Blake Jessop; Buzz Dixon; David L. Craddock; Rose Strickman; Gregory L. Norris; Tamsin Showbrook; Sarah Van Goethem; Tim Ford; and V.F. LeSann. 

This book is awesome. It has grave golems and rusting dragons, vampires and WWII. Druids and dryads and giant penises — oh my! I honestly struggle every time I’m asked to describe it, and I even had to take a couple runs at my Introduction to get it right because, as one reviewer said:

“It’s a challenging undertaking; ‘earth’ being not only one of the four cardinal elements, but also the planet on which we live, the soil which grows and nourishes all life, and the raw material of human construction (bricks, pottery, mined minerals, etc.) It’s pretty difficult to encapsulate al that in a few short stories…” — Melanie S., Goodreads Reviewer (full review here)

But even though I have a tough time boiling this collection down to one sentence (or maybe even because of it?), I can say unequivocally that it is an awesome collection. You know how sometimes the first book in a series is amazing and then you feel like the second one is phoned in a bit? This anthology is not phoned in. Not even a bit of it. In fact, I would say that Earth is even stronger than Fire — and not just in an elemental sense — and they’ll look amazing sitting side-by-side on your shelf.

I’m not going to slip into full-on commercial mode here, but I hope you’ll give Earth a shot.

Get Your Copy Here:

Amazon

Kobo

B&N

Cover Reveal: The Causality Loop

I love this cover!

I know I’ve said that about all the covers in this series, but that’s because they are such great covers. And this one is my favourite, because I really love that shade of orange, and also, the Brandenburg Gate sculptures fit so perfectly with the stopwatch.

I love the book too 🙂

Cover designed by Sarena Ulibarri

Dodge Greenley is tired of being the go-between for his time-traveling family. All he wants is for them all to be able to live together peacefully in one era—is that too much to ask? But after breaking all the Rules of time travel in a desperate attempt to retroactively free his parents from the threat of the secret organization his father worked for a hundred years earlier, Dodge makes a startling discovery. It turns out there’s someone else stalking his family up and down the timeline, and this time, the menace may be coming from within the Place in Time Travel Agency itself.

Enlisting the help of his 22nd century coworker, Dodge sets off to the year 1915 to rescue his sister from a threat that might have originated at any point in their past, present, or future, proving once again that the greatest threat to time travelers is other time travelers.

This, the fourth and final novella in the series, will be available October 29th, but you can pre-order it now!

Pre-order

And while you’re at it, check out the other books in the series. Each one stands alone but, like chocolate and peanut butter, they are better together 🙂

Swashbuckling Cats Open to Submissions

Swashbuckling Cats: Nine Lives on the Seven Seas

If you think cats and water don’t mix, think again.

I’m putting together an anthology full of feisty felines on the high seas! I want pirate cats, and Viking cats. Submariner cats and explorer cats. This book is going to be filled with adventure-loving cats, puns and fun. I want it to be a wild, rollicking ride complete with sword fights, sea monsters, treasure hunting, discovering new worlds and lots and lots of kittehs.

Be careful not to get too caught up in the fun and forget to include a strong plot and detailed characters for your story, though.

I’m a sucker for a great setting, three-dimensional characters and high stakes. And if your story elicits real emotion from me–laughter, tears, anger or anything in between–you will have increased your chances of success significantly.

Rights and compensation: Payment: $50 CAD flat fee and a paperback copy of the anthology. In exchange we are seeking first world rights in English and exclusive right to publish in print and electronic format for six months after publication date, after which publisher retains nonexclusive right to continue to publish for the life of the anthology.

Open submission period: June 1, 2019 – July 31, 2019

Length: Under 9,000 words

Publisher: Tyche Books

No simultaneous or multiple submissions.

No reprints.

Canadian spelling, please.

Submission form –> https://niteblade.submittable.com/submit/141693/swashbuckling-cats-nine-lives-on-the-seven-seas

Edited to add an FAQ:

Q: What if I’m not good at Canadian spelling?

A: Do your best. I won’t be judging your story based on how well you nailed Canadian spelling and if it’s accepted myself or the copyeditor will catch and correct any words you missed. But try.

Q: Does Canadian spelling mean you are only open to submissions from Canadian authors?

A: Not at all. I am open to submissions from anyone, anywhere.

F is for Fairy

F is for Fairy is officially out today!

This release has been different from most of the releases that I’ve done in that supporters of my Patreon at the Corvid level and higher got access to the electronic copy of this book a couple weeks ago and this title has been available in the Bad Fairy book bundle for almost as long.

But.

The book is officially out today — and that includes in paperback!

“Anyone who believes that faeries are wee, golden-haired creatures with dragon-fly wings and sweet intentions has never met a real faerie.” –Suzanne Willis, “A Silver Thread Between Worlds”

Retellings of familiar favourites from new perspectives, and brand new stories share the pages of this fairy-themed collection. Within these offerings you’ll find fairy music and food, contracts (making and breaking them), changelings, circles and curses–these stories deliver all the things you already love about fairies and a few new tricks as well.

A dusting of dragons, shapeshifters and ogres accompany these tales which include feminist fairies overcoming trauma, Norse fairies breaking the rules to interfere in human affairs, intergalactic fairies hitching a ride to a new home, political satire featuring an idiot king and talking animals, a new Robin Archer story, fairy run nightclubs and so, so much more.

Altogether this anthology includes twenty-six brand new tales–one for each letter of the alphabet–from contributors Pete Aldin, Steve Bornstein, Andrew Bourelle, Stephanie A. Cain, Beth Cato, Sara Cleto, Cory Cone, Danielle Davis, Megan Engelhardt, Michael Fosburg, Joseph Halden, Lynn Hardaker, L.S. Johnson, Michael M. Jones, Jeanne Kramer-Smyth, Samantha Kymmell-Harvey, C.S. MacCath, Jonathan C. Parrish, Alexandra Seidel, Michael B. Tager, Rachel M. Thompson, Laura VanArendonk Baugh, Brittany Warman, Lilah Wild, Suzanne J. Willis and BD Wilson.

For a limited time I’ve dropped the price on the book to $2.99, which means right now you can get 26 awesome fairy stories for less than what many of us might spend on a nice coffee.

(I don’t drink coffee, but you know what I mean LOL)

The price will be going back up on Saturday, May 11th so don’t miss out on this great deal 🙂

Get F is for Fairy now

Amazon (US) (CA) (UK)

Kobo

B&N

iTunes

There are just so many ways for you to get this fairy fix that you can’t possibly go wrong LOL

Patreon

Real talk.

There’s this conversation that always happens when you put myself and some of my writerly friends together in a room. It’s the ‘what we do has value, we have value’ conversation.

It can take many forms. Sometimes it’s the ‘This industry is so broken’ conversation, sometimes it’s ‘Hey, my royalties bought me a coffee this month!’ said with sadness-tinged humour, sometimes it is a straight-up talk along the lines of ‘Why do we do this?’ or ‘How do we fix this?’ or ‘Look, this is how much I made last year — am I a failure?’

It’s a conversation that wears many faces, and touches on different aspects of the thing, but at its center it’s about worth and value.

Partly it’s about money because, like it or not, our society does judge people based on how much money they make and we are a part of our society. And I, personally, make far, far less working in publishing full time than I would if I had a part time job making minimum wage.

That’s just a fact.

I’ve been doing this full time for… oh, ten, twelve years now? I have not one, but two ego shelves full of books I’ve had a hand in creating (contributed to, written, edited or published). I work hard. Hard. 40 or more (usually more) hours a week, every week. And I would make more money working at McDonalds part time.

But it’s not just about money.

This job is tough. It erodes you. People talk about needing to have a thick skin to work in publishing, but that’s not really accurate. You need to have a thick skin, and armor, and a shield, and… you get the idea.

Or do you?

If you work in publishing you probably have an idea of how it goes, but in case you don’t, let’s look at just a wee part of the life cycle of a book…

You write the book — in itself a huge feat — but you get it done. And edited. And polished up to be as good as you can make it. The first time you do this probably takes years. After that, when you get more practiced you may be able to do it in months.

You start submitting the book — maybe you’re querying agents, maybe you’re pitching it to publishers. Whoever you are submitting your book to you’re going to start collecting rejections. Probably a lot of rejections. A lot of people saying no — some more kindly than others. A lot. Rejection %s will change depending on what specific path you take here but they will be high.

But then, Hallelujah! Someone says yes and agrees to publish your book. You get the contract and everything looks good (though sometimes you get the contract and it’s obvious you’re being preyed upon and you have to go back to submitting…) so you sign it and you’re on your way. Yay! The rejections can stop, right?

Uh. No.

After you go through the editing process (which can definitely feel grueling, especially if it’s your first time through) you finally have a finished product. Your book. Yay!

Now you need to get blurbs for it. And reviews. So you try giving it away. You pay people (Goodreads, NetGalley, BookSprout) to help you give it away… but for every 20 people you ask only 1 accepts a copy of your book. The one you worked so hard for. The one you put your heart on the line for. The one you cried for. And then, of the hundred or so people you are finally able to get to accept a (free) copy of your book only 1 leaves a review for it after they read it.

But at least you got a couple reviews, right? So that’s a tiny victory. But now it’s time to sell your book. The one you struggled to give away…

And that’s as far down that road as we’re going to go in this blog post. And every path is different — not just for every author but for each specific book — but you see it, don’t you? How every step of the way we’re dealing with rejection in crazy amounts. With disheartening situations.

I think, no matter how confident  someone may be when they start down that road, it eats away at you. And then when we reach the end of that path and our book is out in the world and we’re promoting it and hoping it will find its audience what do we do? We start writing the next book and do it all over again…

Is it worth it? For me, right now, it is because I’ve met some amazing, amazing people in these word trenches that I’m proud to call friends. But it’s still hard. And I still feel the need to qualify my answer to questions like ‘Is it worth it’ with ‘for now’. Yes, for now. Because you never know…

Which brings me to why I started a Patreon. I started a Patreon to slow the ride, or at least add an extra layer of padding between my skin and my armor. The trickle of money will be nice, there’s no doubt about it, but I’m most excited about the possibility that the next time I’m feeling down and questioning the value of these things I do I’ll be able to look at my Patreon and say, “It’s tough, this path I’ve chosen, but look, Rhonda. These five, ten, thirteen people, they think what you’re doing has value enough that they are supporting it not just verbally, but financially.” And that will be huge.

But I’m also terrified that I’ll announce this, that I will try to make this Patreon work, and I’ll fail, and that rejection will hurt the hardest.

I hesitated even to type that because I don’t want it to sound like a guilt trip but I promised real talk from the very first line of this post, and that’s it. Real talk. The realest talk.

Some people’s Patreons make them thousands of dollars a month and while that would be amazing I’m not foolish enough to think it’s reasonable for me and my audience. My dream is to reach 50 patrons and whatever numbers of dollars a month that equals ($150?).

And I feel weirdly greedy and unrealistic when I say that? Even though I’ve created some great reward tiers for people who sign up to support me over there.

Patronage begins at $1 a month and will get you access to exclusive stories, poems, audio books, polls (to pick what I work on next), behind the scenes content and see cover and TOC reveals before the general public.

Other tiers reward patrons with advance copies of my ebooks, signed paperbacks, my editing your stories, surprises in the mail and more.

If you’re even a little intrigued please check it out here –> https://www.patreon.com/RhondaParrish

Pledges aren’t billed until the end of the month so you can try it out for free for nearly three weeks and see if you feel I’m offering you enough value for your money before the time comes to be charged. Like a free trial.

For the foreseeable future I will be moving most of my blogging over there (calls for submissions and such will be available to the public, not just my patrons). I’ll mirror calls for submissions and such here for now as well, I would eventually like to move all my blogging to Patreon so everything is all in one place but I have issues giving up control of my blog so we’ll see what happens — which side of my brain wins this battle.

In the meantime, thank you for reading this — whether or not you checked out my Patreon link. Every acceptance is a win, and you reading all the way to the end of this very long, somewhat depressing, post is definitely an acceptance, and I appreciate you making the road a wee bit smoother. <3

Grimm, Grit and Gasoline Table of Contents

Two young women defy the devil with the power of friendship. The pilot of a talking plane discovers a woman who transforms into a swan every night and is pulled into a much more personal conflict than the war he’s already fighting. A pair of twins with special powers find themselves in Eva Braun’s custody and wrapped up in a nefarious plan. A team of female special agents must destroy a secret weapon–the spindle–before it can be deployed, but when they discover one of their number has betrayed them, things get messy. The daughter of a gangster is being held hostage on the top floor of a hotel and, now unbeknownst to her, the secret that had been keeping her safe has been revealed and her time is running out. These and over a dozen other dieselpunk and decopunk fairy tales can be found in this anthology.

Retellings of The Little Mermaid, Hansel and Gretel, Rapunzel, Cinderella, The Monkey King, Swan Lake, Pinoccio and more are all showcased alongside some original fairy tale-like stories. Featuring stories by Alicia K. Anderson, Jack Bates, Patrick Bollivar, Sara Cleto, Amanda C. Davis, Jennifer R. Donohue, Juliet Harper, Blake Jessop, A.A. Medina, Lizz Donnelly, Nellie K. Neves, Wendy Nikel, Brian Trent, Alena Van Arendonk, Laura VanArendonk Baugh, Sarah Van Goethem, Robert E. Vardeman and Zannier Alejandra.

That right there is the unofficial description of Grimm, Grit and Gasoline: An Anthology of Dieselpunk and Decopunk Fairy Tales. I think it does a really good job of describing what you can expect from this anthology but it’s missing one word. Awesome. Because this anthology is awesome.

Check out the Table of Contents:

Circles and Salt by Sara Cleto
Salvage by A.A. Medina
The Loch by Zannier Alejandra
Evening Chorus by Lizz Donnelly
To Go West by Laura VanArendonk Baugh
Bonne Chance Confidential by Jack Bates
늑대 – The Neugdae by Juliet Harper
The Rescue of Tresses Malone by Alena Van Arendonk
Daughters of Earth and Air by Robert E. Vardeman
Easy as Eating Pie by Amanda C. Davis
Accidents are not Possible by Sarah Van Goethem
A Princess, a Spy, and a Dwarf Walked into a Bar Full of Nazis by Patrick Bollivar
Steel Dragons of a Luminous Sky by Brian Trent
Ramps and Rocket by Alicia K. Anderson
As the Spindle Burns by Nellie K. Neves
Make This Water No Deeper by Blake Jessop
One Hundred Years by Jennifer R. Donohue

If you like fairy tales, I think you’re gonna love this book. Coming in September!