Sunday, March 31, 2013

A Peculiar Pets excerpt vlog!

Yes, it's backwards.

Or maybe you're backwards.

Think about that a little.

available starting at midnight tonight at:

A complete, snack-sized romance in 150ish pages! Only $1.99!


Tuesday, March 26, 2013

You're invited-- to the WICKED AS SHE WANTS Release Party!

Book Release Party & Masquerade!

Friday, May 3, 7pm
Red Door Playhouse, Roswell, GA

If you love a grand event, dress up in your steampunk, historical, or party-time finest. If you're shy, wear jeans and put on one of the provided masquerade half-masks. Food, wine, cocktails, books, music, photo booth, raffles, and fun. The new scents from Villainess Soaps will be available to sample! Books will be available for purchase, signing, and the addition of tiny, vampiric animals.


* plenty of parking!
* stop for dinner in scenic downtown Roswell first!
* have your photo taken with Criminy or Casper!
* extra-delicious cake from Cakes by Darcy!
* wine and signature cocktails!
* free perfume samples from Villainess Soaps!
* get a signed copy of Wicked as They Come, if you don't have one!

* EXTRA! Author James R. Tuck will be signing copies of BLOOD AND MAGICK, the latest book in his Deacon Chalk, Occult Bounty Hunter series!

... and more to come!

I hope you'll join me! And invite everyone you know! Hit downtown Roswell for dinner and then come PAAAARTY!


Monday, March 25, 2013

meanwhile, in Germany...


It's the German cover for Wicked as She Wants. 

I love the title, too:


Danke for another beautiful vision, Bastei Lubbe!


B&N vs. S&S: The casualties are you and me, dears.

Here's the bad news: my publisher is having an argument with the last big bookstore.

And who's being punished? Little authors like me, and readers like you.


I'm a big supporter of B&N. I have a Nook and buy around 50 titles a year on it. I do lots of writing at my local Starbucks just so I can smell the books in the attached B&N and pick up new favorites for my entire family. And I keep on top of visiting author signings and head over there to meet other writers and get signed books. And I love booksellers.


I love Simon & Schuster. I love my editors, my editorial assistants, my publicist, my copyeditors, my cover artists, and my book design.


I love my fellow S&S authors.


I love readers.


From what I can tell, all of these people I love? Are the ones being hurt by this dispute. Not to mention you, the reader, as you'll have fewer choices when you go to a Barnes & Noble to browse. This is a war being fought by executives in board rooms, and we, my friends, are the casualties.

New authors like me depend on physical bookstores. My career hinges on the chance that a new reader will stumble on a physical copy of my book or that a bookseller will recommend it. And because B&N has driven out so many small indies, that big box store that opened by my movie theater when I was 16 is a pretty big deal for physical sales.

Last year, on launch day, my book was on one of those "New Release" towers in my local B&N. That's where I went to see the first copy of WICKED AS THEY COME in the wild. That's where my friends went to buy it. That's where friends all over the country went to take a pic and post it on Facebook and put a copy face-out in the hopes that it might catch someone's eye. And that's where I proudly took my Sharpie to sign books. I love my local indie (hey, FoxTale Book Shoppe!), but I know where most of America goes to browse, and it ain't Woodstock, GA.

The thought that I might show up at B&N on April 30 and not find a single copy of my book? I don't scare easy, and it's TERRIFYING.

So I want to make it easy for you to find my book, even if your B&N won't.

Here is WICKED AS SHE WANTS directly from Simon & Schuster.
Here is WICKED AS SHE WANTS on Amazon.
Here is WICKED AS SHE WANTS on Indiebound.
Here is WICKED AS SHE WANTS on iBooks.
Here is WICKED AS SHE WANTS on Books-a-Million.
Here is WICKED AS SHE WANTS at Powell's, a great indie.

In fact, here is an entire page of alternate sources!

Pre-ordering makes you my hero. Asking for it at your local bookstore makes you my hero. Buying it in any format, anywhere? MAKES YOU MY HERO. Need more ways to help me or the authors you love and want to keep writing forever? Here's a handy list of ways to help authors, which is the best way to make sure you'll always have tons of new books to enjoy.

We're all David as two giants battle it out, heedless of our feelings. Every time you buy my book (or anyone's book!), you ping the Goliaths with a little stone that lets them know someone still cares.

Ping away, darlings. Ping away.

Go forth and buy their books!

Monday, March 18, 2013


April 1: THE PECULIAR PETS OF MISS PLEASANCE e-novella launches
April 30: WICKED AS SHE WANTS, Blud book 2 launches


Up for grabs:

(6) ARCs of Wicked as They Come, the first book in the Blud series.
These are the original, collectible galleys with blue dummy covers. 
Winners' copies will be signed and personalized, with adorably vicious bludbunnies drawn inside and will arrive with a carnival-themed notebook, Bludbunny Brigade bracelets, and bookmarks.

(3) ARCs of Wicked as She Wants, the second book in the Blud series.
These ARCs were specially made for my NYC signing, and there are less than 20 in existence. 
Winners' copies will be signed and personalized, with adorably vicious blud creatures drawn inside and will arrive with a pink mini-notebook with a hand-drawn bludbunny on the cover, Bludbunny Brigade bracelets, and bookmarks.

May the odds be ever in your favor!

May Casper invite you to piano practice!

And may Criminy send you a locket!

Note: As mentioned in the Terms & Conditions, in order to count toward this giveaway, orders and pre-orders must take place between 3/18/13 and 4/1/13. If you're already ordered/pre-ordered up, I LOVE YOU, and please remember that my books make great gifts!

want a free book? that no one else has?

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Wicked as She Wants by Delilah S. Dawson

Wicked as She Wants

by Delilah S. Dawson

Giveaway ends March 24, 2013.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win

It can be yours! Before the April 30 release day! 

Book can be signed, personalized, and decorated with a few sneaky vampire animals.

Good luck, and may the Casper be ever in your favor!

Oh, and if you haven't added it on Goodreads, it would be pretty awesome if you did. Mostly painless on your part, too.


in Soviet Russia, scam emails YOU

Y'all, I'm so excited. I just received this email, and I think I might have found...



Hello my name is Julia I am from small city in the center of Russia.
I am 24 years old.I am very friendly and romantic person.
I saw your structure and have decided to do record in you as I search for the friend on the Internet!
I want to have serious relationship and it true.My dream is search for the man which will appreciate me and to respect.
I like to get acquainted with unknown people. I am a optimistic girl with sense of humor, who is looking for her soulmate...
Sometimes I go to the disco with my friends. I like to spend my free time on the nature.
There are a real beautiful places near my town! Al my life I like sport.
When I was young I was engaged in gymnastics and now I am engaged in aerobics.
Al my friend say that i cherful and sociable.
I hope soon to see your message in my box.


Let's count the reasons this is a good idea:

1. She saw my structure! And liked it!

2. She's looking for a man which will to respect, and that's totally me.

3. She likes the disco. And who doesn't like the disco?

4. She likes to spend her free time on the nature. That sounds kinky.

5. She's a Russian ex-gymnast who now does aerobics. So she might not get her periods, and she owns lots of leg warmers. Never a bad thing!



In conclusion, I'm pretty sure sending her my banking information is a good idea. I don't see how things could possibly go wrong with Julia from Russia. Worst case scenario, she shows up, and I turn her into a maid and never have to do housework again.


In other news, I'm deep into revisions on Servants of the Storm and... not really doing much else. Now is one of those times that if you want to know what I'm up to, your best bet is Twitter: @DelilahSDawson. You don't even have to join, if you don't want to.

Monday, March 11, 2013

on body image and the good kind of porn

Note: This is a very personal, racy blog post. Mom, please don't read it.


I can't remember how I found it, but I'm fascinated by this UTTERLY NOT SAFE FOR WORK EXTREMELY GRAPHIC AND COMPLETELY P0RNOGRAPHIC tumblr. The images are true works of art, many of them black and white photographs of the highest caliber.

If you click here, I won't be responsible for what you see: Lady Cheeky.

Because it's definitely porn, but it's like no porn I've really seen before.

In the About, it's described as photos depicting desire and passion with a strong emphasis toward positive body image and depicting true passion in sex.

Which is completely accurate. And so very refreshing.

And it's helping me face some of my own issues.

Because while I may have an ego the size of a train station, I've always had body issues and can't help focusing on my flaws. But every time an image from this tumblr pops up on my dash, my first thought is OMIGOD, IT'S A PEEN, HIDE THE CHILDREN, and my second thought is, WOW, THAT'S HOT.

And then, if I look closely, and only if I look closely, do I notice that the bodies shown have imperfections. That some are what my brain would consider too this or too that, that some have stretch marks or weird hair, or that some of the women have nipples that do things I've only read about in romance novels that overuse words like pearled or pert or hungry.

As in, when I'm reading, I'm all SORRY, BUT NIPPLES CAN'T BE HUNGRY. And then I'll see one of these gifs and be all, DANG, THAT'S ONE HUNGRY-ASS NIPPLE.

When I think about the fact that we're okay with showing extremely graphic violence but not even partially graphic sexuality, I feel betrayed by American media. It's okay to show people being hacked to death with a cleaver, but it's not okay to show a woman receiving pleasure. And the only time it actually *is* allowable to show people experiencing passion in TV or the movies, they are people with perfect bodies. Always. Like, someone sends out a casting call for NUBILE GRECIAN PROSTITUTE, and then the HBO people look at photos, make these women undress, and scrutinize every detail of their bodies before waxing them raw and slapping them into the background of Game of Thrones so there's something more interesting to watch than Littlefinger looking crafty.

When I first wrote the book that became WICKED AS THEY COME, it was a fantasy with black-out scenes. I was asked to write sex scenes, and it was hard (THAT'S WHAT SHE SAID), because I have a very Southern, very polite, very sex-is-a-secret prudishness. But I wrote them, and the book sold as a romance, and now I am inexplicably a romance writer. The experience of becoming an author has forced me to be more open about my feelings about sexuality, to professionally discuss genre and writing a sex scene and the stigmas against romance and the people who read it. And I'm grateful for that, for the way that I've been edged out of my comfort zone, forced to rethink how I think about sex. Because without knowing it, I had trapped myself in a little box that didn't really exist.

I wish that there were more chances for the general populace to see images like the ones on that tumblr. There's a beauty to such passionate abandon, to imperfect bodies doing perfect things. More than we need the carefully polished, desperately airbrushed images of sex sold to us by Hollywood, we need these honest and raw depictions of what we all feel, or want to feel. More than we need the weirdly lit, embarrassingly fake, painfully awkward staging of porn, we need the reality of a body bent over a sofa, of a stomach rumpling with furious passion, of a woman's face caught in a mirror that wasn't put there on purpose.

I grew up thinking these images were dirty and should be hidden and that women who exhibited passion were somehow lesser. The older I get, the more I feel that passion is the key to feeling alive, and that images capturing genuine ecstasy should be celebrated-- granted, at the proper place and time.

Last night, I got out of the bath and looked in the mirror, but for once, I didn't catalog my flaws. I noticed my curves. That's a battle I never realized I was fighting until I understood that every moment I made myself feel like less, I was losing. And now, for maybe the first time, I realize that just like those images should be celebrated for their perfect imperfection, maybe I should celebrate myself, too. I don't see bodies like mine on TV or in the movies. But I see them on that tumblr, and they are beautiful.

The wonderful thing about passion is that when you're in the midst of it, everything else disappears. Your flaws, your problems, your worries. Whether you're writing or singing or making out, there are moments when time stops, when the self disappears. The world needs more of that, more moments that remind us to come alive.

Thank you, tumblr, for the reminder.


Saturday, March 9, 2013

on writing: how to honor suffering

I recently read a book that was well-written, fast-paced, and intriguing. And I hated it. I hated it so much that it still bothers me two weeks later, despite the fact that I read every damn word in three days and had to find out how it ended.

Why did I hate it?

Because one of the characters dealt with tragedy in a completely unrealistic manner. And as it was a tragedy that I myself have dealt with, it made me angry. And I threw the book across the room.

And that's what writers want to avoid.


Trying to put words and sensations around something sad, tragic, or painful that you haven't personally experienced can be very difficult. And the best way that I can think of to avoid tainting your writing with a built-in fury factor is to seek the input and criticism of people who *have* experienced it.

Research it.

Now, I know that you can't walk up to someone and say, "Hey, tell me about losing a child." But in today's world, you can find online forums or put it out there on Twitter or Facebook. "Does anyone have an experience with X they're willing to share? DM me" can put you in touch with those who are willing to answer your questions. People often want to share their experiences. It's cathartic to talk about them. And it can be comforting, I think, to know that a writer wants to do honor to pain instead of just assuming what something feels like.

In my case, this book included a character who had been raped. I personally didn't feel that the aftereffects were handled with empathy but were instead manipulated to push the story forward and, to be blunt, make the sex hotter. It felt insulting and belittling. Hence my anger.

Someone asked me once how I dealt with being raped, and here's the analogy I came up with:

Think of your mind as a house. There are rooms you visit often, rooms you rarely use, and even secret, hidden rooms that you haven't discovered yet. Your tragedy or your pain is a rabid dog. It's unwelcome and uninvited, and it makes so much noise that you can't get anything done. So you take the bad thoughts, the bad feelings, and you put them in a room and close the door. Sure, at first, it claws to get out, and you can still hear the barking. But over time, with nothing to feed on, it gets quieter and weaker. And you're not forgetting it or pretending it doesn't exist-- you know it's there. But you're not giving it the attention it needs to thrive. And if you're lucky, one day, it ossifies and becomes nothing more than a fossil of something that once happened, something that can't really hurt you anymore. 

The character in this book carried her rabid dog on a chain, kept it with her always, and then just shot it one day, right when it solved all her problems. But I don't think these things ever die, and so the book made me angry. If it was that easy for the character to get over her experience, it basically said that all the work I did dealing with mine was nothing. That the fact that my body closed down against my will for all those years, the fact that I couldn't stop the tears-- that all that pain meant nothing. I like to think the author was going for a positive, hopeful message: that with love and tenderness and the right mental breakthrough, it's possible to transcend tragedy. But all I got was that in this book, the rules of recovery didn't apply.

As a writer, I hope you'll never hold back on telling your story. But I also hope that you'll do honor to suffering in the best way you know how. Research is just as important when writing about tragedy as it is when writing about history; if you want the reader to make the jump with you and believe that your world is real, the emotional foundation must be solid.


Your mileage may vary. My way is not the only way, in writing or in healing.


Questions? As always, ask away.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

new headshots ahoy

I'm going to put these here. For reasons.

All images by Dolorianne Morris, taken at the Old City, New Blood con in St. Augustine, FL in February. Hence the beach.

You can see the one I'm using as my head shot on the About page up there. But these ones make me happy. Because the beach at sunset makes me happy.


Fireside needs your help!


You can get in until midnight EST. A full year's subscription-- 12 episodes-- is available for only $24, and that includes Chuck Wendig's ambitious serialized fiction story and Galen Dara's original art.

Fireside Magazine needs your help to reach funding in the next twelve hours.

Why might you wish to help?

1. You want to join over 500 people in supporting original fiction and artwork.

2. You believe authors and artists deserve to make a living wage doing what they love.

3. You like the fantastic pledge gifts, including original art, signed books, cut glass decanters, and the chance to have your name used in my short story or to get your hands on one of my coveted Wicked as She Wants printed ARCs, of which there are less than 20 and which were available only at my New York book signing.

4. You want to read my short story, LOVE SONG OF THE LIZARD BOY, which is my chance to visit the story of Eblick, the lizard boy in Criminy's Clockwork Caravan. Let's face it-- scaly green dudes with venomous fangs don't rate high as romantic heroes, so short fiction is really my only chance to explore the world of a character that many readers have professed to dig. Sad as it is, in order to continue my dream of being a professional author, I have to hit the paying jobs first. Without projects like Fireside, risky bits of fiction might slip right past my fingertips and never get told. And this is a story I want to tell.

5. Because you like stories.

6. Because you like me.

7. Because Chuck Wendig already told you to on his blog.

8. Because you are awesome.

Remember, even $1 or $2 helps. Every little bit helps

The clock is ticking. Please help us reach our goal.

Thanks for listening. Now, back to your regular chicanery.


Monday, March 4, 2013

video: that daring young girl on the flying trapeze

I had three objectives in NYC:

1. Meet my agent and editors
2. Attend Sleep No More
3. Take a flying trapeze class.

I was 3 for 3. More on that later. For now, enjoy my first catch on the flying trapeze, courtesy of Ace, Ross, Kevin, and my amazing and talented pal Parisa at STREB, NYC.

I also learned this trick:

When I was a little girl, I loved ballet and gymnastics. Around the age of 7, I was told that I didn't have the right body for either discipline, and that I was wasting my time and my parents' money. I quit, and I was heartbroken.

Well, guess what, mean lady who told me I was too pudgy to be an acrobat?