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Sunday, March 22, 2020

Lock Down Cheer Up Signed Book Giveaway

Here in New York State, as in much of the rest of the country, almost all of us are being asked to stay at home and away from other people as much as possible.

Friday afternoon I shut down my store, The Artisans' Guild, and I'm now hunkering down at home with Alicia my cat sitter, who had come up to take care of the cats while I was away on two trips--both now cancelled. She's here for the duration, and while it is a little strange to have someone in the house besides the cats, it is nice to have the company.

We have plenty of supplies, and I have lots of writing to do, but it is still...challenging, to say the least. Everyone I know is feeling kind of blue, so I thought I'd do a book giveaway, just for the heck of it. A shut down cheer up, as it were.

I'm going to give away the winner's choice of a signed copy of my new humorous paranormal romance, KING ME! or a signed ARC of my upcoming St. Martin's Press nonfiction release MODERN WITCHCRAFT, which will be out in July. As usual, all you have to do is fill in the Rafflecopter form below. If you'd like to spread the word, that would be great.

Hang in there, everyone!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Happy Spring Equinox

Happy Spring Equinox, all. I know things feel a bit grim right now, but hopefully spring will bring us all light and hope and potential for positive growth.

In the meanwhile, hang in there!

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Cancelling a Con

For months now, I have been looking forward to going to Paganicon in Minnesota. (Like, 6 or 8 months...a long time.) Llewellyn, the publishers of my nonfiction books and decks, are located nearby, so I was going to get to go to the Mother Ship at last, meet my editor Elysia's famous cats, and hang out with a bunch of my Pagan peeps.
Plus, of course, I was going to do my "Cat Magic" presentation, a ritual, and Llewellyn was going to have a "Meet the Everyday Witch" night in their party suite. I bought swag, people. Lots of adorable swag.
But then Coronavirus happened, and I had to make a tough decision. They're still holding the con, but I won't be there. I'm heartbroken, but it was going to mean traveling on four planes, through four airports, and being at a large (ish) convention. I've agonized over the decision for over a week, but I didn't feel that I could risk my health (almost 60 with asthma and other health issues) or that of the medically fragile folks in my close circle, of which there are a number.
So today I cancelled the plane, the hotel room, and my attendance. It felt like the socially responsible decision. There is no way to know if things would have been just fine, but with any luck, I will be able to attend at some future time. I'm still hoping that my book signing with Anne Bishop at Flights of Fantasy in Albany is still on for the 28th. That at least is a car ride away, and a relatively small venue.
Stay safe out there, people. I love my readers. 

Monday, February 24, 2020

Modern Witchcraft ARC Giveaway

As most of you know, I have an exciting new book coming out in July from St. Martin’s Press. Modern Witchcraft: Goddess Empowerment for the Kick-Ass Woman is my first mainstream nonfiction book and I’m hoping that it will help an entirely new audience to discover my books. While also giving my wonderful tried and true readers another book to add to their list of favorites, of course.

I hope you’re all as excited as I am!

Naturally, I am going to celebrate with a giveaway, and because St. Martin’s Press was nice enough to send me a few Advanced Reader Copies (these are usually sent to reviewers well ahead of the book’s release, and therefore haven’t been through the final proofreader process yet—you can expect to find a few typos, and the back cover won’t look the same), I’m going to give away a signed ARC along with a few goodies.

That’s one of my fun witch’s broom pens, and a very cool hematite pyramid to help with grounding and healing.

As usual, all you have to do is fill out the Rafflecopter form at the bottom of the page.

I also wanted to give you some additional news, while we’re at it. I have something big coming next month, and the folks who are signed up for my newsletter (and open it, of course!) will hear about it first. Plus there will also be a SECOND ARC giveaway, for newsletter readers only. The next newsletter will be coming out sometime in March, so make sure you are signed up so you don’t miss out! You can sign up by following the link in the Rafflecopter form, or by filling out the one at the top left of this blog.

All sorts of fabulous things are coming up, including a couple of events I’m going to be at in March. Check out http://www.paganicon.org/ for information on Paganicon and let me know if you’re going to be there! (Hint: I might be bringing a couple of ARCs to that too…)

And thanks as always for your support!


Saturday, January 25, 2020

Big Huge Wonderful News

First of all, some smaller but still great news--I found out last week that Freya, the mama cat I fostered (and Diana's mother) was finally adopted from the shelter. She went to a house with no other cats, which is what she really wanted, and I am sure she is going to make her new person really happy. She was a great mama and a really sweet cat, but after being a stray, she was too defensive with other cats in her territory to be able to stay here, even if I hadn't thought six cats was even crazier than five... So this was absolutely fabulous news, and it made me almost as happy as my other news. Almost.

As many of you know, I lost my contract with Berkley for the fiction books (Baba Yaga and Rider series) about three years ago. Since then I have been diligently writing and sending out partials of various novels (contemporary romance, humorous romance, women's fiction) to various publishers, with no luck. Lots of great rejections telling me they loved my writing, but it is a very tight market, yada yada yada. (I have lots of other author friends in the same position, so I in no way take this personally. Publishing is tough right now.)

I was, in fact, beginning to worry that my fiction career was over, although thankfully the nonfiction is still going strong. (Did I mention that I love you people?) I dabbled a little bit in self-publishing, but I just don't write fast enough to be a success at that.

Last October, my agent Elaine sent out a partial manuscript for a book that was something completely new and different for me. She had suggested that my voice would be a good fit for cozy mysteries. To be honest, I kind of thought she was crazy. But if you have a good agent, you try and do what they say.

Last week, we got word from Berkley's mystery imprint that they wanted the first three books in the "Rundown Rescue" series. So ladies and gentlemen--I'm BACK!

Who is celebrating with me?

Thursday, January 2, 2020

Moving Forward in the New Year

Welp, it is a new year. Although oddly enough, it feels pretty much the same. I don't know about you, but I'm hoping for lots of positive changes in the year to come.
I don't do New Year's resolutions, but I usually like to have a focus or goal for the new year. Last year it was "Embrace joy." I did pretty well with that one, all things considered, but I think it needed a corollary of "Avoid stress and drama." Well, that one is pretty tough, really, if you are staying involved and aware.
So this year's focus is "Keep calm and carry on." (While continuing to try and find and embrace joy wherever I can.) This basically means I'm going to do my best to stay involved and aware without letting it make me as crazy as it has for the last couple of years. We'll see how that goes.
In the meanwhile, in more concrete goals, I hope to finish working on the current nonfiction project for Llewellyn by the end of this month, come up with plans for two books in 2020 (probably one fiction and one nonfiction, but I still have to confer with my agent), improve my health, do more magic and meditation, and eat more really good chocolate. Life is short, after all.
What are your goals or resolutions for the new year?

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Yuletide Greetings and Tiny Treasures

Happy Yule, Happy Chanukah, and Merry Christmas! I can’t believe another year is coming to an end. Thank you all for spending at least part of it with me. I appreciate my friends, fans, and readers more than I can say, and I wish you all a wonderful holiday, no matter how you celebrate.

I will be hosting my yearly Yule dinner party on the 21st for Blue Moon Circle, family, and friends. I look forward to it all year long. And now I have something else to celebrate too—the release of a new short collection of short-short stories set in the world of the Baba Yagas and the Riders!


This project wasn’t something I had planned on doing, but I was chatting with one of my author friends a few months ago and that conversation made me think of a few little short-short stories I had posted over the years at the Literary Escapism blog as part of the promotion for the fabulous Coastal Magic Convention. I knew that most people hadn’t ever had a chance to read them.

Then I was talking about them to Crystal Sarakas, who sometimes acts as my virtual assistant, and she said, “I know you’re in the middle of your crazy busy season, and I almost hate to even suggest this, but would you consider writing a new story to add to these?” (Then she ducked.) It really was crazy, but I loved the idea. And when I said, “What about a Chudo-Yudo story?” she jumped up and down and squeeed. Then we went looking for the perfect cover, and I found the one above, by cover artist Lindsay Tiry, and it inspired the story of the same name as the collection title. Three of the stories are centered around Yule, so this seemed like the perfect time to put this tiny collection out as a gift to my faithful readers. Consider it my thank you to your sticking with me and the Baba Yagas for all this time.

The book is out in digital format as of today, and will be available in paperback (a small one, called a chapbook—it will be pretty skinny!) as soon as we can get it set up. I hope you enjoy these little treasures, especially the new one.

Find the book here: https://amzn.to/2Ma5DKT

Of course, because I’m me, I’m doing a big giveaway to celebrate the mini-collection’s release. It includes a Kindle Fire 7 tablet, a signed copy of the last novella (Dangerously Driven), and a stuffed dragon in honor of the new Chudo-Yudo story. Check it out!

While you’re checking things out, you might want to swing by my Etsy store, if you still need some (really) last minute gifts for the reader or witchy type on your list (or for yourself). I’ve got signed books, my gemstone jewelry, and some magical gift sets, among other things. https://www.etsy.com/shop/deborahblake

 Thank you again for taking this journey with me…my peeps are the best.

Wishing you all a blessed Winter Solstice and a happy New Year. May the year to come be filled with joy.


P.S. Diana has settled in really well, and sends her love, along with the rest of the Wild Bunch.

To enter the contest, just fill out this Rafflecopter form. As always, no purchase is necessary (although of course I'd love it if you bought the new mini-book).