Friday, 20 December 2013

New Sub-genre - CIRCUSPUNK!!

Today I'm bringing you something a little different. Ever heard of Circuspunk? No? Well, Read On!


Cas, Charie, welcome to Peacewrites! Please tell us - what is “CIRCUSPUNK”?

Charie:This is the definition that I sent to the Urban Dictionary. “Circuspunk is a new sub-genre of punk/bizarro literature scene created by Charie D. La Marr, aka Persiphone Hellecat, aka Kotton Kandy - a former professional clown. The genre includes stories that take place in circuses, carnivals, midways, sideshows and also includes stories of birthday party clowns, freaks, magicians and costumed characters. With some elements taken from her experiences in the world of clowns (she won't tell which are true and which aren't) the genre is a blend of truth and fantasy that takes in the usual bizarro mixture of fun, sex, satire and splatter. Also included in the genre are dark stories, Lovecraftian stories, noir stories and other variations and combinations of contemporary literary genre.”

Cas: Intriguing, Charie! Please introduce yourself.

Charie: My name is Charie D. La Marr, creator of the genre Circuspunk. Some of you might know me from Facebook as Persiphone Hellecat, and some might even know me from the nine years I spent as a professional clown as Kotton Kandy.

So why, do you ask, does a person who spent nine years wearing the motley suddenly start writing stories where clowns blow up? First of all, that is only a part of Circuspunk. Circuspunk can bring in any other genres that you want—from romance to sci-fi and everything in between. The stories include circuses, carnivals and fairs, midways, freak shows and sideshows, clown, magicians, freaks, acrobats, carnies … all of it!

And the reason is simple. Behind all that splatter and funk, I love the circus! This is a very irreverent, but loving look at a subject near and dear to my heart. But I just got tired of hearing people say, “I #$%$%$% hate clowns!” I would show them my picture and they would agree that as a clown, I was adorable, but they still hated clowns and wanted to see them wiped off the face of the earth. So I decided, if people want to blow up clowns, let’s do it MY way—with tongue firmly planted in cheek. And so Circuspunk was born. I hope that it makes people laugh and desensitizes that clown phobia. I consider it an antidote.

Now, that is not to say that I don’t understand clown phobia in children. As a clown, I took many courses in the psychology of children and how to handle them. I understand that we raise our kids telling them not to talk to strangers. And yet the first time they see a clown, they push the kid into the clown’s arms and get out the camera. I would freak too if my parents made me hug the strangest person I ever saw! I learned to get down to their level, stay back and talk softly and work to gain their trust until they came to me. I would talk about what was on their t-shirts, what their favorite subject in school was, anything to loosen them up and gain their confidence. And the truth was, I ended up in literally thousands of baby books because I never met a kid who ended up not liking me.

Sadly, I cannot say the same of their parents. I was a performing clown. I did magic shows, I walked around with magic tricks in my pockets and puppets. I was not a gumball machine. I didn't give out cheap trinkets or make animal balloons. I saw way too many parents allow young ones to suck on those balloons and once saw a kid have to have a cheap ten cent ring pulled out of her throat.

My message is simple. Love us. We walk around all day in costumes that sometimes weigh close to ten pounds with wigs and full makeup in the hot sun. We get shin splints from working on unforgiving concrete surfaces. We work hard taking classes and keeping our skills and talents sharp and growing. And we ask nothing more from you than a smile. Is that a lot to ask for?

Cas: Doesn't sound too much to me! Can you give us your book's description?

 BUMPING NOSES AND CHERRY PIE is a book of short stories in a brand new genre—Circuspunk. It contains 25 stories about the circus, carnivals, sideshows, midways and fairs featuring clowns, magicians, freaks, carnies and the crazy cast of characters that go along with them. “This ain't your mama's roller coaster ride! That is unless your mama does acid before hitting the amusement park!” says Mimi Williams, author of “Beautiful Monster. “. Hate clowns or love them, you are going to enjoy reading her zany and sometimes poignant look at a world we both love,” adds Jim Rose of the Jim Rose Circus and author of “Freaks Like Me.” This is a wild ride of stories that begins with the rape of a circus poodle by one of the show’s rescue mutts and doesn't let up until an overweight daredevil Elvis impersonator becomes a circus stuntman—diving 35 feet into a flaming kiddie pool of water. In between, the combination of satire, splatter and the wild and wacky will have you laughing, with brief respites of stories that will touch your heart and make you think. A professional clown for 9 years, Ms. La Marr tells it like it, like it should be and like those of you who with clown phobia would like it to be. Put on your rubber nose, put your big shoes up on the coffee table and enjoy BUMPING NOSES AND CHERRY PIE. The first Circuspunk book ever!

Charie La Marr's first work in her self-created genre Circuspunk, "Bumping Noses and Cherry Pie" is a loving but irreverent look at the world of the Circus- from behind the scenes and in front of the lights. Hate clowns or love them, you are going to enjoy reading her zany and sometimes poignant look at a world we both love. Charie has the heart and soul of a clown and the polish, pop and sparkle of true author. – JIM ROSE of The Jim Rose Circus and best selling author of “Freaks Like Me”

"This ain't your mama's roller coaster ride! That is unless your mama does acid before hitting the amusement park! Or, rather, make that the circus. Hang on to your popcorn, make sure your red nose is properly secured, and don't get too close to the elephant! But above all, enjoy the hell out of this awesome book! Circuspunk has officially arrived and you do not want to miss this show!" – Mimi A. Williams, author of “Beautiful Monster”

I had the good fortune to read many of these stories in this book as they poured from Charie's fingers. As they arrived, I read them in big gulps, ever more impressed with the range she commands as a writer. From lyrical delicacy to bold, raunchy, side-splitting humor, La Marr is in full control of her powers. I can't remember reading a collection this consistently entertaining.  – Alex S. Johnson, Author “Bad Sunset” and “Jason X – Death Moon”

“In Bumping Noses and Cherry Pie, Charie D. La Marr compiles the best of the bizarre.
Clowns and contortionists gather under this veritable big top tent to usher in Circuspunk,
the latest subgenre to invade the small press scene, one town at a time.” – Kirk Jones, author of “Uncle Sam’s Carnival of Copulating Inanimals”

I have known Charie for a long time and she is every bit a clown and a storyteller. In fact, she’s one of the few people I know who can keep up with me! Read Bumping Noses and Cherry Pie. You will laugh. And take my word on it—you will be hearing more from her!  Mickey Rivers NY Yankee World Champion 1977 and 1978 and clubhouse clown.

I have never come across a story that Charie couldn’t tell. She always manages to put her own slant on everything she write. Whether she is writing about baseball or the circus, her stories will capture your imagination and draw you into her world, holding you there until she is ready to let you go. BUMPING NOSES AND CHERRY PIE is a funny and crazy look at the world of the circus written by one who has been there. I expect big things from her, and honestly I cannot wait to see what she has in store next! – Ray Negron, author NYT bestseller “The Boy of Steel” and “Yankee Miracles”

Distantly related to Mary Shelley on her father’s side, CHARIE D. LA MARR has created a genre called Circuspunk which is listed at Urban Dictionary. BUMPING NOSES AND CHERRY PIE is her first work in her new genre. She also has upcoming stories in Alex S. Johnson's heavy metal anthology Axes of Evil and Shwibly Magazine, James Ward Kirk's Bones and Ugly Babies 2, In Vein for the benefit of St. Jude’s Hospital, Chupa Cabra’s We Walk Invisible, Dynatox Ministries’ Witches!, Ripple Effect for Hurricane Katrina relief, Surreal Grotesque,Oneiros’ Books CUT UP! and other anthologies. She was September's featured writer at Solarcide. She is known for writing in many different genres from crime to bizarro to erotica and even Seussian. She is currently editing a Circuspunk anthology trilogy called The New Whakazoid Circus—the Greatest Show on Paper. And she has just sold a bizarro book to James Ward Kirk Fiction called Squid Whores of the Fulton Fish Market.

A redhead with a redheaded attitude, she lives in NY with her mother and son (who works for her as her PA) and fur children Bailey Corwin, Babe Ruth and Casey Stengel. She has a degree in Interior Design, Summa Cum Laude, from New York Institute of Technology. She also spent nine years wearing the motley as a professional clown.

Bumping Noses and Cherry Pie
“High School House of Horrors” – Short Story – Kindle Single
Ripple Effect (anthology) – Short Story “Entertaining an Angel Unawares” and
Bones (anthology) – Short Story “A Bone to Pick”
In Vein (anthology) – Short Story “Nothing Is Forever”
We Walk Invisible – Short Story – “Fifty”
Witch! (anthology) – Short Story – “The Three Hags Go To Burning Man”
Solarcide (online magazine) – Short Story – “To a Coy Mistress”
The Shwibly (online magazine) –  Short Story - “The Dream”
Surreal Grotesque #13 (online magazine) – Short Story – “Convergence”
Squid Whores of the Fulton Fish Market
Fireside Popsicles (anthology) – Short Story “The Lady in the Sideshow”
Ugly Babies 2 (anthology) – Short Story “Beauty is Only Skin Deep”
Indiana Horror (anthology) – Short Story “A Touch of Indigo
Cut Up! (anthology) – Short Story “The Lady and the Panther”
Axes of Evil (anthology) – Short Story “The Return of the Plaster Casters”
Octavia’s Brood (anthology) – Short Stories “Sweet Autumn” and “Growing Up in His Shadows”
Outpourings-For the People of the Philippines (anthology) – Short Story - “A Moment in Time”
Bad Girl Tales (anthology) – Short Story - “The Dressing Room”
Surreal Grotesque #14 (online magazine) Short Story – “At Home With the Clintons”

Several projects as a ghostwriter.

Cas: Many thanks, Charie! Well,I don't know about you, dear readers, but I'm intrigued! I'll definitely be reading Charie's book, and will be back with a review once I'm done. If you'd like a copy for yourselves, here are the links: 


Thursday, 12 December 2013

Praise for the Epic Artesans of Albia Fantasy Series!
"Better than A Game of Thrones" - SCIFI, Amazon reviewer 
"Most impressive. Fantastic series ... don't miss it!" - K S, Amazon Vine Voice and Top 1000 Reviewer
"A must-read for fantasy fans" CR, Blogger and Amazon reviewer
"5 stars, but deserves so much more" AA, Amazon reviewer
"Splendidly written in a wonderful voice" RM, Author and Amazon reviewer
"One of the best fantasy books I've ever read" DC, Author and Amazon reviewer

Today is the first official day of the relaunch of my Artesans of Albia fantasy series. Below you will find the Rafflecopter widget for the Giveaway, and also the list of what's to win. So many cool prizes!

The first prize is a signed print copy, mailed anywhere in the world, of each book in the first trilogy. That's King's Envoy, King's Champion, and King's Artesan. Plus - yes, PLUS! - ALL of the e-books in the Book Blast! That's an awesome list from some awesome writers! Check it out once you've seen the rest of this post.

Here is the new series trailer - what do you think?
Below is an overview review written by one of my Artesans series most ardent fans, Dan Gamble. There are no spoilers, so don't worry! My grateful thanks to Dan for becoming so involved in the characters and plot, and for giving me the thrill of reading his thoughts and feelings. Here's his series review:

Review of Artesans of Albia

Only once in a while do you come across a series that really draws you in, and know you are going to be a fan for years to come, Artesans of Albia is just one such series. What follows are my personal thoughts and reflections on the series, as the first trilogy is wrapped up and the next installments await.

Fantasy as a genre today is very much a sifting for gold type of exercise, those grains of gold are there, but they are not necessarily easily found. Luckily for me, quite by chance I came across Cas Peace’s new series, Artesans of Albia. It is both epic in scope like the best fantasy works of their time, however it also very much personal and relatable. Personally two things really stand out for me and make the series what it is; characterisation that is neither stereotypical nor rushed, and the fascinating and well thought out system of magic.

No story succeeds without strong characters, but the Albia series is simply awash with them; the inestimable Major Sullyan, the flawed but admirable Taran, the complicated and private General Blaine, the gentle, but strong Rienne, the list goes on. Given the dearth of characters you might think that there is the risk of them standing out so much individually the power of the group and the relationships between them are lost. Not so. One of Cas Peace’s strengths as a writer is to create a whole range of characters who we can not only relate to and feel strongly about, but who can at the same time maintain a whole range of relationships between themselves. It is this more than anything in some ways that drives the story, the characters’ motivations are a core facet of this series and one that is a pleasure to read and follow. You feel their struggles, their triumph, their suffering and their pain as the story progresses, but never once does it feel contrived, but merely the natural progression of their development as people. The series as it moves forward to its conclusion in the years ahead will rise and fall upon these characters, and because of that I feel it is in safe hands.

The other big area for me within the series, is the system of the magic. This is especially important given its central place in both the story, as well as being integral to a number of the main characters. The idea of metaforce, how it interacts with the world, how it is learned and how it is perceived is central to the story and the world that Cas Peace creates. The fact it is not an afterthought, but clearly been well planned, allows it to have standing and acceptance within the story. Given that the fate of Artesans, those who train with and use metaforce, I can see being one of the key plotlines as the series progresses, the planning in this area is very important. It is especially enjoyable to read about the different ranks, the limitations and consequences of such power combined with the struggles of the main characters, as well as the wider political ramifications that result.

While those are the two stand out areas for me personally, each reader will take away something different, depending on their own preferences and beliefs, but the series is not found wanting in that regard, being rich in so many areas that a make a great series what it is. However it would be remiss of me to mention something that may perhaps be unique to this series and Cas herself, and that is music. While many writers may use music and song in their works, this series is the first I have read where those songs have actually been recorded and performed, and actually have meaning within the series and to the characters themselves. Versions which have been performed live by Cas herself can be found on her website, are both haunting and really add more depth, and another layer to the world that has been created within the series. You can quite happily enjoy the series without hearing these songs, but if you do you will gain a greater appreciation and understanding of those events that the songs relate to. It is just one more thing, a nice touch, simple, but important and powerful, that brings out the depth in the series, both in the world and the characters themselves.

King’s Artesan concludes the first trilogy in the triple trilogy that will ultimately make up the whole Artesans of Albia series. I have been drawn in by the first three and the great writing contained within those pages, and am greatly looking forward to the remaining two trilogies that will develop the series and bring it to its conclusion. This talented author and the Artesans of Albia series in particular comes highly recommended. Truly a special find, one of the golden nuggets in the body of fantasy work today.

Here are the e-books included in the BookBlast:

King's Envoy, Artesans of Albia Book One, Cas Peace
King's Champion, Artesans of Albia Book Two, Cas Peace
King's Artesan, Artesans of Albia Book Three, Cas Peace
The Circle of Talia Book One, Shadows of the Realm, Dionne Lister
The Dream Keeper Chronicles Book One, The Dream Keeper, Mikey Brooks
Seeking A Scribe, Enchanted Bookstore Legend One, Marsha A Moore
The Dream Keeper Chronicles Book Two, The Dreamstone, Mikey Brooks
League of Elder, Sygillis of Metatron, Ren Garcia
A Knight of Silence, Candace C Bowen
A Change of Plans, Donna K Weaver
Spur of the Moment, Candace C Bowen
A Song of Betrayal, Jesse Duckworth
Echoes of Erebus, Joseph Picard
The Slaves of Erafor Series Book One, The Reader of Acheron, Walter Rhein
A Sword Called ... Kitten? Gordon A Long
Watching Yute, Jospeh Picard
Why Are People So Stupid? Gordon A Long
Lifehack, Joseph Picard

And here's the schedule for the rest of the tour. There are fascinating character interviews, including Sullyan, Robin, and Rienne, plus other guest posts and author interviews. Please enjoy!
ARTESAN’s Blog Tour Schedule
December 12th – December 19

December 12thKelly P.'s Blog

December 12thCandace Bowen

December 13thDonna K. Weaver

December 13thMusings of a Writer

December 14th - <3.....Laura Crean.....<3

December 14thBook Lovers Life

December 14thDionne Lister, Author

December 15thHeoric Fantasy Books

December 15thOzero

December 15th - Harren Press

December 16thBeesley Buzz

December 16thR.K. Grow

December 17thItz2Mainstreem

December 17thRen Garcia

December 18thCabin Goddess

December 18thIllusions of Intamacy

December 18thInside Mikey's World
December 19thAirborn Express

December 19th - Litery of Erana

December 19th - Telling Stories

Welcome to the Official Blog Tour of:
Book Two in The Dream Keeper Chronicles

A thrilling fantasy-adventure series for middle-grade readers!

Don't forget to check out the GIVEAWAY
at the bottom of this page for a chance
to win one of over 30 prizes! 


Dorothy called it Oz, 
Alice called it Wonderland, 
but Nightmares call it HOME. 

When Parker’s mom is dreamnapped by the wicked Mab, it is up to him and Kaelyn to save her. When they return to Dreams, they discover Mab isn’t their only problem. Gladamyr has lost his powers and the only way to get them back is to become what he fears the most—a nightmare.

In Book 1, The Dream Keeper, Parker and Kaelyn discovered that Dreams was a real place that everyone visits while they sleep. An evil nightmare named Fyren took control of the gateway to that world. Parker and Kaelyn teamed up with Gladamyr, the only dream keeper to escape capture by Fyren, and together they save Dreams from Fyren’s rule. After the defeat of Fyren the children return to Awake to find Mab, Fyren’s next in command, has dreamnapped Parker’s mom. 

The story continues in Book 2, The Dreamstone, as the children return to Dreams to save Parker’s mom. Finding her, however, is not their only problem. Mab has waged a war on the Crossing and has sent an army of dragons to bring it down, nightmares have been released from prison, and Gladamyr has lost his powers to shape-shift. Parker, Kaelyn, and Gladamyr must once again defy all odds to set things right and save Parker’s mom before it’s too late.    

“The Dreamstone, by Mikey Brooks, is a wild stallion of a story: fast, thrilling, and unpredictable. I was hooked in chapter one. If he can snare the attention of an old reader like me, he’ll have kids sneaking this one into class underneath their text books…If this one isn’t a kid-pleaser, I don’t know what is.” –Michelle Isenhoff, author of the Divided Decade Trilogy and the Taylor Davis Series.

“This really is a cracking novel. Action-packed and spellbinding!”—Cas Peace, author of The Artisans of Albia series.

"If you like the Percy Jackson, Fablehaven, or the Harry Potter series, you'll love this!" –An Amazon Reviewer.

Mikey Brooks is a small child masquerading as an adult. On occasion you’ll catch him dancing the funky chicken, singing like a banshee, and pretending to have never grown up. He is the author/illustrator of several books including the best-selling ABC ADVENTURES: MAGICAL CREATURES and BEAN’S DRAGONS as well as the middle-grade fantasy-adventure series THE DREAM KEEPER CHRONICLES. His art can be seen in many forms from picture books to full room murals. He loves to daydream with his three daughters and explore the worlds that only the imagination of children can create. Mikey has a BS degree in English from Utah State University and works full-time as a freelance illustrator and cover designer. As a member of the Emblazoners, he is one of many authors devoted to ‘writing stories on the hearts of children’. He is also one of the hosts of the Authors’ Think Tank Podcast. You can find more about him and his books at:
Now Available in Audiobook!


Hardback: 978-1-939993-22-9, Paperback: 978-1-939993-23-6, eBook: 978-1-939993-24-3

Hardback: $19.95, Paperback: $12.99, EBook: $2.99.

Excerpt from: THE DREAMSTONE:
Parker watched as the ambulance with his mother inside drove away. He had expected the medics to barrel down the street with sirens blaring and lights flashing, but instead they drove calmly. The cold night air hurt his throat, at least, he told himself it was the air. Whenever Parker tried to hold back his emotions he got a pain way back in his throat. Kaelyn held his hand, but it didn’t really help. All he could think about was Mab and how she’d taken his mom.
The former ruler of Dreams was vicious and cruel. He had seen what she was capable of when she cut the arm off Mentia, the psychotic clown that chased him and Kaelyn through the vaults. The only thing that guy did was laugh at her. Parker could only imagine the things Mab could do to his mom. Now that Fyren was gone, Mab had a host of nightmares at her command. He shuddered, thinking about the creatures he had seen during the battle in √Čadrom.
“Parker, we’ll find her,” Kaelyn said, trying to comfort him.
“How are we supposed to do that?” he snapped. Kaelyn pulled back, and immediately he felt bad. Heck, she had just lost everything she had ever owned—another gift from the nightmares of Dreams. They had burnt down her house and almost burnt the two of them in the process. Kaelyn had nothing. Not even a picture to remind herself of her dead parents. Yet here she was, the one comforting him. It wasn’t as if his mom was dead, she was just kidnapped, or dreamnapped. “Look, I’m sorry.”
She gave a smile. “It’s okay. Really. I understand.”
“Parker,” his dad called from the car. Parker turned to see his dad was ready to leave. What a jerk! Parker glared at him.
His dad lowered his cell phone for a second. “Look, I’ve talked it over with Zelda and I want you to come and stay with me for a while—at least until your mom is better.”
“No thanks.” Parker turned his back.
“Parker, I don’t have time to argue. Remember—I’m still your father.”
“You sure act like it.”
“I’m acting like it now.”
“You can’t even get out of your car!” Parker shouted. “You can’t even put down your freaking phone. Mom just went off in an ambulance, and you’re more concerned with your stupid work. I’m staying here! I’m not going with you!”
“You’ve got ten minutes to get a bag.” His dad went back to his phone, not giving a sign he had heard a word Parker said.
Parker turned on Zelda. “Did you say I would go with him?”
Kaelyn’s aunt stepped back, worry crossing her face. “Parker, he’s your dad, and who else is there?”
“You can stay with me. Where else are you going to go?” The second he said it Parker wished he hadn’t; or at least tried to sound more tactful. He knew that Kaelyn was handling the fire okay, but Zelda was on the brink of tears anytime someone mentioned the fire or what she lost in it. “I’m sorry . . . really . . . .”
“Parker, I understand, so please, don’t apologize.” Zelda tried to reassure him with a smile. It didn’t really work. Her face was still smudged with black soot, and there were visible tear lines down her cheeks. He at least had a place to go, but Kaelyn and Zelda were homeless. “Your place is with your dad, our place is . . . .”
“Where are we going, Zelly?” Kaelyn asked. They waited for an answer but Zelda only shrugged.
“Look, if I have to go to my dad’s there’s no reason you can’t stay here. Really, my mom wouldn’t mind. Anyway, it doesn’t matter where I sleep. I have to get back to Dreams.”
Zelda looked concerned. “Are you sure, Parker?”
“Dead sure! My mom may be a cold hearted person in the courtroom, but she’s at least human at home—well, when she’s not turning off my video games.”
“Can you call your house when you’re ready to go back?” Kaelyn asked.
“You can count on it, Kae. We’ve got to talk to Gladamyr—I need to find my mom.”
“I know.” Kaelyn gave him a hug.
Parker looked at both Kaelyn and Zelda. He could tell having a place to stay tonight brought them a little comfort, but he still wished he could stay. He thought of his friend and physiatrist, Dr. Gates. He was like the father his own would never be. He wished right now Dr. Gates were here. “Can you explain to Gates what’s going on when he decides to get his butt over here?”
Kaelyn smiled. “You can count on it.”
“Come inside and I’ll show you around. Apparently I’ve got ten minutes.”

10 winners will receive a gift bag with numerous signed books marks, 
collector cards, wrists bands, and a handmade dream key necklace.

Paperback Books:

Can You Survive? Treasure Island, by Blake Hoena

The Super Spies and the Cat Lady Killer, by Lisa Cole Orchard

Color of Freedom, by Michelle Athearn Isenhoff

Explorer X-Alpha, by Lm Preston

Gangsterland, by Ansha Kotyk

Cycles, by Lois Brown

Andy Smithson: Blast of the Dragon’s Fury, by L.R.W Lee

Princess Kandake, by Stephanie Jefferson
Weight of the Crown, by Stephanie Jefferson
Arrow of the Mist, by Christina Mercer
Cassidy Jones, by Elise Stokes
The Seventh Attendant, by Elise Stokes
Curse at Zala Manor, by BBH McChiller
The Curse of the Double Digits, by Lynn Kelley
Into the Forest and Down the Tower, by Ann T. Bugg
Off to Camp and Discovering Art, by Ann T. Bugg
Agency, by Shantal Hiatt
Psyched, by Juli Caldwell
Ragesong, by J.R. Simmons

Secret Sisters Club, by Monique Bucheger
Trouble Blows West, by Monique Bucheger
The Alien Mind, by Virginia Jennings
The Last Time Keepers, by Sharon Ledwith
Frogs & Toads, by Stacy Lynn Carroll
Nexus Point, by Jaleta Clegg
Warrior Beautiful, by Wendy Knight
Shahira and the Flying Elfs, by Anna del C Dye (PDF)

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