Of Chocolate Blobs & Demons

Of Chocolate Blobs & Demons

I see my chocolate blobs are getting many blank looks.

I am quite proud of them, really, in my perverse way. They were, as I said, inspired by La Charlotte de l’Isle, the owner of which occasionally offers chocolate crottes de chien among her witches and flying carpets, when the whimsy strikes her.

MY whimsy, however, included lots of orange peel I felt could only enhance the concoction, and so I did what you might call a raised-in-the-country version of this tribute to Parisian sidewalks. NOW can you guess? It looks exactly like one, admit that it does!

I believe these might end up in the stockings of all the people on my list who were a little naughty this year, what do you think?

SPEAKING OF A LITTLE NAUGHTY–

you remember that time back when I was interviewed by a demon?

GUESS WHAT!!! A new book about that very demon is coming out, THE ROAD TO HELL, and we have her very own author right here with us: Jackie Kessler.

Look at that Jackie, isn’t she cute?

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Now look at her from behind:

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Just kidding! That’s her main character. But you have to admit they both have long dark hair and a certain resemblance around the jaw. Coincidence, Watson? I think not….

I do like those leather pants, by the way.

I asked Jackie to tell us a little bit more about her series on Jezebel, and here is what she said:

What the Hell is HELL ON EARTH? (Laura’s Note: Gasp! I did not either say that. My dialogue has been modified by the editor to make it sound as if I am capable of interviewing someone who writes about demons. Really I said Heck.)

Jackie: That’s the series I’m writing, published by Kensington/Zebra Books. The first book, HELL’S BELLES, is about a succubus named Jezebel who runs away from Hell, hides on Earth as an exotic dancer, and learns the hard way about true love. Sex, strippers, demons—what’s not to like? The second book, THE ROAD TO HELL, is about how Jezebel—now the human Jesse Harris—has to return to Hell to save the lives of those she loves…and somehow make sure it’s not a one-way trip. (If she’d known love was this tough, she never would have turned her back on lust.)

FYI—and yes, you will be quizzed—in 2008, there will be two more HELL stories: the novella A HELL OF A TIME will appear in the April Kensington anthology ETERNAL LOVER, and the full-length novel HOTTER THAN HELL will hit the shelves in August. Hot times!

Here’s what people are saying about the Hell on Earth series. (And no, I didn’t bribe them. Much. Okay, maybe a little chocolate.)

Laura: People are saying SO MUCH in praise of this series that I am going to send you to Jackie’s website to see it, because seriously there is a LOT. Plus her website has EXCERPTS of the first chapters. So go have fun!

Are you back? Did you notice she is GIVING AWAY IPOD NANOS AND SHUFFLES this week? If not, go right back and enter. Sweepstakes ends Nov 10.

Meanwhile, who the Hell is Jackie Kessler? (I said Heck! Heck! Maybe Hay.)

Jackie: Some kids want to grow up to be doctors, or movie stars, or political assassins. Me, I wanted to draw comic books. Not Archies, either—superhero comic books. Maybe it was all the heavily muscled guys in spandex…

Around the time I was 15, I realized that as much as I enjoyed drawing (note that I’m saying nothing about the quality of those pics), it was a lot of fun putting words in the characters’ mouths. I didn’t know the term “fanfic” back then, but I started writing stories about the X-Men, Alpha Flight, and the Teen Titans. Didn’t do anything with those stories, other than horrify my mother. She asked why I couldn’t write nice stories, you know, about bunnies. Nope—me, I wanted to write about power. About magic. About hot guys in spandex. And about beating those guys bloody and senseless. (In retrospect, maybe I really did want to horrify my mother. Hey, not my fault. When I was a kid, I busted her doodling on the cover of New Teen Titans Number 6. Argh!)

So maybe it’s ironic that the book I wound up writing had nothing to do with overly muscled men and everything to do with scantily clad women. (Well, temporarily scantily clad.) Oh, right, and demons.

I live in Upstate New York with my Loving Husband, two Precious Little Tax Deductions, two cats, and 8,000 comic books. For more about me, please visit my website. And remember: love your inner demon.

Laura: That is good advice, about the demon. So you love comic books, hmm? Which super hero or super villain would you like to be?

Jackie: What, you mean balancing between writing, a full-time day job, promotion, a family with two young kids, a mortgage and two geriatric cats ISN’T a super power?

Laura: That is definitely a super power. But if you wanted to have one that, say, society would acknowledge as super…

Jackie: Hmm. Well, instead of saying I want to be Wonder Woman (she must get her legs and armpits waxed, don’t you think?), I’ll tell you which powers I’d love to have. Me, I’d love to fly. Or be super strong. Or communicate with people using only my mind. Or muscle memory. Or…well, frankly, almost anything, except the creepy “I make you die” power that Maya on HEROES has. That’s just nasty, baby.

Laura: Hey, I’d back Jezebel against Maya any day. So…the big question…what kind of chocolate does she eat?
Jackie: Jezebel will eat ANY chocolate, even milk chocolate, which doesn’t love her nearly as much as she loves it. Chocolate is proof of God — er, of Sin
Incarnate.

Laura: I knew Jezebel and I understood each other. Wouldn’t want to be fighting her for the last chocolate on a deserted island or anything, but as long as the supply stays plentiful, I think we’ll get along fine. What about you? If you could change one thing that you have done in your writing/publishing history, what would it be? Or, another way of thinking about this, if you could warn unpublished authors away from any one error, what would it be?

Jackie: I wouldn’t have spent 17 years rewriting the same damn story. Really. Move on! Write it, get feedback from a critique partner, revise it, make it as strong as possible, then throw caution to the wind and try to get an agent/get it published. (As for the How Do I Get An Agent question, that’s
another topic completely.)

Laura: THAT is good advice. So many people do that. Thanks for coming on, Jackie, and good luck with that demon of a heroine of yours!

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