Although the ghosts and bats and skeletons and spiders decorating my house will get packed up tomorrow, the pumpkins will be with us for a while longer. Those hang around until the day after Thanksgiving, when I can finally decorate for Christmas!
Not that I’m not enjoying the fall holidays. I love them. But Christmas is my favorite holiday season of the year.
That’s one of the reasons I love our annual WMG Holiday Spectacular!
My daughter’s seventh-grade year is in full swing. She just wrapped up her volleyball season. And we’ve just completed the fall parent/teacher conferences (all six of them).
During our conference with her Advanced English Language Arts teacher, we got to read a poem she wrote in class, which was inspired by the jazz poetry of Langston Hughes, whom they studied. The students had to choose five random words from one of his poems and create a whole new piece.
I have to say, I was stunned at her result. I guess I shouldn’t have been, but I was. Her natural gifts never cease to amaze me.
Looks like I’ll have one more writer to work with in the future.
But for now, my attention is focused on the writers of our annual Holiday Spectacular.
We funded within an hour, hit our first stretch goal in a day and have since hit more stretch goals and been named a “Project We Love” by Kickstarter.
Edited by Kristine Kathryn Rusch and featuring stories by more than thirty professional writers, the Calendar of Stories makes a great gift all by itself.
But you can get so much more with this Kickstarter!
For readers, we have gift packs of this year’s holiday calendar, bundles of holiday collections, and variety packs of holiday books. Plus, we have all of the past anthologies, calendar compilations, and the upcoming anthologies available for purchase.
For writers, we have two special Kickstarter-exclusive workshops (How to Write a Hardboiled Holiday Story and How to Write a Secrets Holiday Story) as well as discounts on workshop bundles and even lifetime discounts.
The Calendar of Stories comes with every reward, so no matter what you choose, you have 39 days of holiday short stories to look forward to: for yourself or as a gift.
Backers of this project at the $25 level will get an original holiday story delivered to their inbox every day from November 24, 2022, through January 1, 2023, plus an ebook compilation of all the stories and introductions, in order, when it’s released in July 2023.
These stories, which range from sweet romance to dark crime, will also be released in anthology form in the fall of 2023 in three books: Candy Cane Kisses, Crooked Little Christmas, and Time Travel Holidays, all edited by Kristine Kathryn Rusch.
Plus, all backers at the $25 level and higher will receive all of the stretch goals we unlock to get extra ebook and pop-up workshops for writers.
Speaking of writers, we’ve got Kickstarter-exclusive workshops, as well.
We also have rewards that help you catch up on your holiday reading if you’ve missed the past years’ projects.
And that’s just a sample of the reward levels, which also include gift options (for easy gift-giving), paperback editions, and so much more.
To read all about the Kickstarter, watch the fun video Kris narrated about this year’s project, and see all of the available rewards and stretch goals, click here.
I wish you a very happy Season’s Reading!
Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer, working mother, and brain tumor survivor.
We’ve been redecorating our house (after spending so much more time in it during the pandemic), and after painting, the second-biggest change we made was to order two large pieces of furniture: an entryway organization unit and a media center.
I ordered them in February, and because of the massive supply chain disruptions, they just arrived last week. But they’re here!
It’s amazing what a difference the right furniture makes. We have one long windowless wall on our main floor that stretches from the front door to the back deck, and I’ve long struggled with the best way to use that space while also providing separation for the living and dining areas.
The space finally feels finished. It only took me 16 years <grin>. What a wonderful gift.
It felt like Christmas at the office, too, but for a totally different reason. The three anthologies from the 2021 WMG Holiday Spectacular published last week and we’re so getting in the holiday mood!
Here are the three volumes you can read right now:
Forget run-of-the-mill holiday stories. In this cleverly creative WMG Holiday Spectacular anthology, award-winning editor Kristine Kathryn Rusch offers a carefully curated collection of unexpected holiday stories to add a delightful twist to the season.
From completely fictional holidays to holidays celebrated in the strangest of places to off-the-wall twists on familiar traditions (pooping Nativity figures, anyone?), this volume will put a smile on your face as it transports you in the weirdest and most delightful ways.
Join eleven of the best writers in the business as they present their take on A Weird Holiday Season.
Includes: “The Case of The Disappearing Gingerbread City” by R.W. Wallace “Project Management Miracle” by Johanna Rothman “The Light Man” by Ron Collins “The Pooping Knight’s Playbook” by Robert Jeschonek “Thunder Angel” by Kate Pavelle “Dong Zhi and the Last Huli Jing” by Julia Vee “A Hollow Earth Thanksgiving” by Robert J. McCarter “Sometimes Strange Magic Casts the Best Spell” by Kari Kilgore “Beast Feast” by Meyari McFarland “Five Days of Chickenmas” by Brenda Carre “Gone Gnomin’” by Jessi Hammond
Scrooges unite! In this crime-filled WMG Holiday Spectacular anthology, award-winning editor Kristine Kathryn Rusch offers a darker and more disturbing take on holiday stories to add a bit of mischief and mayhem to the season.
From characters fighting corruption to facing moral dilemmas to conducting criminal investigations, this volume offers a refreshing change to the usual holiday fare for those with a bit of darkness in their hearts.
Join David H. Hendrickson, Annie Reed and nine other spectacular writers as they offer a more mysterious side of the holidays with Cold-Blooded Christmas.
Includes: “Goodness and Mercy Shall Follow” by Tonya D. Price “A Black Winter’s Night” by Chrissy Wissler “On A Cold Winter’s Night” by Cate Martin “On The Feast of St. Stephen” by Patricia Duffy Novak “The Perfect Christmas” by Lauren Lang “Evergreen & Crimson” by Lisa Silverthorne “Maccabees” by Carolyn Ivy Stein “Negative Spaces” by Annie Reed “Santa’s Shrinkage” by David H. Hendrickson “The Lost Gravy Boat” by Meyari McFarland “Consigned in Peppermint” by Lisa Silverthorne “Presents for Kitten” by Jessi Hammond
Romance and holidays go hand-in-hand. In this year’s sweetest WMG Holiday Spectacular anthology, award-winning editor Kristine Kathryn Rusch offers a lovely collection of romantic holiday stories to add a bit more heart to the season.
From traditional Regency and romantic suspense stories to a diverse set of characters who find love and romance in the usual—and some unusual—places, this volume offers eleven heart-warming tales filled with love and joy.
Join Anthea Lawson, Dayle A. Dermatis and nine other wonderful writers as they present a host of holiday happy endings in Mistletoe Moments.
Includes: “How It Started” by Irette Y. Patterson “A Different Christmas Experience” by Chrissy Wissler “Stolen Kisses” by Carolyn Ivy Stein “French Armoire” by Brenda Carre “Chicken Chuck & the Congo Connection” by Patricia Duffy Novak “The Christmas Haters’ Ball” by Robert Jeschonek “The Plunge” by Daphne Crowe “A Pinewood Valley Homecoming” by Kelly Washington “In The Deep Dark Forest on Solstice Night” by Dayle A. Dermatis “Mr. Bear” by Jessi Hammond “Holly and The Viscount” by Anthea Lawson
I promised last week that I’d tell you about another of our free first-in-series ebooks next month. Well, next month is here! Welcome October!
October is my favorite month. I’ve already got the house decked out for Halloween. We’ve already watched Hocus Pocus. And I’ve got witches and pumpkins and ghosts on my mind!
So, it’s only appropriate that the book I’m talking about this week is from USA Today bestselling author Dean Wesley Smith’s Ghost of a Chance series. Set in the world of Dean’s fan-favorite Poker Boy universe, the premise of this series is a simple question: What happens if ghosts can fight crime and bad guys?
Here’s the synopsis to the first novel in that series, The Poker Chip:
Just fifteen minutes after Dr. Jewel Kelly meets Deputy Sheriff Tommy Ralston, they both die. They simply become ghosts, hanging around their own death scene in the mountains of Montana, waiting for something to happen. But even as ghosts they find each other really attractive.
In life, they both worked to help people. It seems that in the afterlife, their job continues.
The strangest crime-fighting ghost duo ever. And the sexiest.
Did you know that we have several first-in-series ebooks available for free? One of those is Kill Game, the first novel in USA Today bestselling author Dean Wesley Smith’s Cold Poker Gang series.
If you love puzzle mystery novels, complicated cold cases, and detectives tackling the most twisted crimes, you’ll want to take this opportunity to introduce yourself to USA Today bestselling author Dean Wesley Smith’s Cold Poker Gang. Smith takes you into the world of his acclaimed novel Dead Money with a series focused around a group of retired Las Vegas detectives playing poker and solving cold cases.
Here’s the synopsis:
Retired Detective Bayard Lott hosts the weekly poker games at his home. The group calls themselves the Cold Poker Gang. And they succeed at closing old cases.
Lott’s very first homicide case as a brand-new detective had gone cold more than twenty years earlier. But retired Reno detective Julia Rogers, new to the Cold Poker Gang, suggests they look at that case again for personal reasons.
From that simple suggestion spins one of the strangest and most complicated murder mystery puzzles the gang has ever seen.