Saturday, June 11th, 2011
I just read another great review for Hellebore and Rue over at FanGirlTastic.
Reviewer Gayle Grazen had many nice things to say, but of course I’m partial to her words about my story, Sky Lit Bargains:
Kelly A. Harmon’s “Sky Lit Bargains” is an enjoyable adventure fantasy tale in which a young woman becomes the warrior in a male-dominated world to avoid a highly unpleasant marital prospect. This could have quite easily been part of a longer work.
This is the second reviewer who’s mentioned that the story could be a longer work. Now I’m wondering if I shouldn’t write it into a novel…?
If you’re read the short story, I’d love your opinion. Drop me a line (or mention in the comments below):
- Let it stand!
- Write a novel!
(Inquiring minds want to know!)
About the Contest
JoSelle Vanderhooft, one of the editors of Hellebore and Rue is a talented jewelery maker. She is designing necklaces based on the stories in the book and offering them as prizes in a little contest.
To win, all you have to do is make a post about Hellebore and Rue on any social media outlet, and then post back to her blog by June 15, 2011 to let her know. It’s that easy.
Details — and a picture of the lovely necklace– are on Joselle’s Blog, the Memory Palace.
Saturday, June 26th, 2010
The Bad Ass Fairies Volume 3: In All Their Glory received a 4.25 star review from Night Owl Reviews!
Of the 21 stories in the anthology, two were singled out for attention: John L. French’s and mine! Here’s that nugget, along with a mention for editor Danielle Ackley-McPhail:
Particularly enjoyable were the John L. French tale that alternates between worlds yet explores the horrors of the drug trade upon two disparate cultures, the Kelly Harmon tale that explores another use for the selkie fur and the editor’s exploration of the Wild Hunt.
Read the entire review here.
Thursday, April 1st, 2010
I’m not joking.
Once again, I’m walking on air!
(This follows very closely on the heels of the 5-star review I received on Amazon for my novella, Blood Soup. I’m very excited.)
This is the story of a man who violates the terms of a contract, and the “party of the second part” decides to execute the enforcement clause. Only this time, the contract has been in place for hundreds of years, and is between a town and a dragon.
The terms—pay the dragon annual tribute, and he doesn’t destroy the town—are quite simple. Not the sort of agreement you’d want to break, even for a good cause.
A lesser author would have given readers a simple revenge tale, with the moral being, “keep your word.” But Kelly A. Harmon gives her readers much more. Her characters—both human and dragon—are complex and subtle, with nobilities and strengths that might just outweigh their instincts and weaknesses.
Perhaps The Dragon’s Clause should be required reading for all lawyers…and for you!
You can check out the review on Amazon, if you want. While you’re there, check out my Amazon author page.
Note: The Dragon’s Clause was originally published in the Ricasso Press anthology, Black Dragon, White Dragon.
Saturday, March 27th, 2010
All I can say is, “Wow!” I received this fantastic review of Blood Soup, posted by S.R. Southard at Amazon:
In “Blood Soup,” Kelly Harmon ladles out a story of a fantasy kingdom beginning at the moment of a fateful decision. That decision, warned about in a prophesy, carries consequences that ripple across decades in an inevitable and destructive chain of cause and effect. The characters are complex, vivid, and compelling, with motives both understandable and entangling. The aroma of “Blood Soup” carries the tang of universal themes such as wise and unwise leadership, the long-term effects of bad decisions, birth, death, and the wisdom that comes with reflection in old age. Kelly Harmon writes with a flowing style that draws you right in to her swirling mix. Read it at a bus stop and you’ll miss three buses before you even look up. It’s hot. It’s tasty. Take one spoonful of “Blood Soup” and you’ll finish the bowl!
Monday, November 2nd, 2009
Blood Soup went out to several reviewers in September and October and I’ve been anxiously awaiting a response.
I’m thrilled to see the first is a good one.
Kari at Kari’s Korner Reviews apparently enjoyed it very much. I’m doubly honored since Kari reviews mostly romance.
With the scary title BLOOD SOUP (Eternal Press, ISBN: 978-1-926704-53-1) by Kelly A. Harmon, it even has a cover that immediately catches your eye and makes you shiver. This is a medieval tale about a kingdom destined for certain dire ruin if the King’s heir isn’t a girl.
The characters in the story work together AND against each other as they secretly manipulate, scheme, hope, and react to the surprising birth of the King’s heir.
Filled with murder, mystery, and very dire consequences, this is a fast paced Novella with vivid portrayal of events and characters, pulling you into this harsh world the author has created and no doubt leaving her with new fans eagerly awaiting her next book.
If you’re interested, Blood Soup can be purchased:
Monday, July 6th, 2009
This is a review for my Project 100: Fill in the Gaps project.
The plot (from Wikipedia).
The rich landowner Sir Charles Baskerville is found dead in the park of his manor, surrounded by the moorland of Dartmoor, in the county of Devon. He appears to have died from heart attack, but the victim’s close friend, Dr Mortimer, is convinced that the death was due to a supernatural creature, which haunts the moor in the shape of an enormous hound with blazing eyes and jaws. Fearing for the safety of Baskerville’s heir, his nephew Sir Henry, coming to London from Canada, Dr Mortimer appeals for help from Sherlock Holmes.
The Hound of the Baskervilles is the first thing I’ve read by Arthur Conan Doyle. I expected not to like this (very short) book for at least two reasons: 1) I usually don’t like to read mysteries, and 2) the antiquated style of writing was certain to turn me off. However, I enjoyed the tale so much that I believe I’ll be adding Arthur Conan Doyle to my reading list.
It’s funny that I don’t like to read mysteries. As a pre-teen I devoured those one-minute mystery books for kids…couldn’t get enough of them. Adult mysteries have usually felt contrived, and I lack the patience to figure out what is a clue and what is not. The Hound didn’t feel contrived at all to me…and when clues were slung in my direction, I knew it (even if I couldn’t figure out what they meant at the time). But knowing what they were increased my enjoyment of the story, because I could noodle over their significance at odd times – like when cooking dinner.
The first page or two of writing caused me some consternation. Doyle employs several, “As you know, Bobs,” (See the Turkey City Lexicon) in the opening dialogue which is openly contrived in order to deliver some necessary information. Beyond that, the writing smooths out, and although a bit wordy (IMHO), it includes many elegant passages.
Interestingly, the book begins in Dr. Watson’s point of view, and then changes to a letter format when Watson and Holmes split up (Watson to Devonshire, Holmes to remain in London). The letters are from Watson to Holmes – so still in his POV. There is also an instance of an “excerpt from Watson’s Diary” used to tell the tale. The style reverts back to Watson’s POV once Holmes joins him in Devonshire.
All of the loose ends are tidied up in meticulous detail via conversation of Watson and Holmes in the last chapter entitled, “A Retrospection.” The clues are explained and a tremendous amount of the back story is filled in by Holmes. For me, this was the hardest part of the book to read: it starts out with a long-winded description by Watson of why so much time has passed since the end of the case and now, when he and Holmes were discussing it. Per Watson, Holmes has solved two other cases in between. Why this is important – other than to show a passage of time (which I can’t figure out the importance of) – I don’t know. Further, Holmes’s dialogue is bloated in order to squeeze in as much detail as possible. I’m not sure this would work in a modern-day mystery.
Nonetheless, I found it to be an enjoyable read overall.
Wednesday, June 17th, 2009
I write, write, write. Then I edit, delete, and write some more*.
American author Henry Miller once said that you have to write a million words before you produce anything good. That’s probably true. (This gave me a laugh, by the way: how to get a leg up on writing a million words of crap, the Million Words of Crap Generator v1.0.)
I also attend conferences and workshops for writers. (More on this in a later post…)
The other thing I do is read books on writing. I go through phases: I’ll read several in a row and then ignore them for quite a while. Many I borrow. But it struck me recently that I’ve enjoyed a few so much I’ve kept them and occasionally refer to them.
With that in mind, I thought I’d begin reviewing them here on the blog. Are you interested? What books would you like to see me review? (And if you’ve written a book on writing, drop me a line. I might be interested in taking a peek and reviewing it here.)
*Actually, it’s more like: write, write, edit, delete, edit, write, delete, write, write, edit, write, delete, edit, edit, write, write, write.