Free Creepy Short Story On Darkness & Good!

It’s my turn to post a free short story to the Darkness&Good blog again this week. This is an older story, because I freely confess that I’m spending every inch of my writing time trying to finish my novel Fox Red so I can release it next year, but you’ll enjoy it πŸ˜‰ Desperate Measures is a creepy little wedding story; I feel kinda sorry for the MC, actually πŸ˜€

Anyway, click to head over to the Darkness&Good blog and read Desperate Measures πŸ™‚


Over 40 Free Stories! An Anthology of Stories for Teen Readers

YOU GUYS IT’S NEARLY HOLIDAYS. This, my friends, is a Very Exciting Thing. It also means that hopefully you’ll get some more regularly scheduled blogging – and I’m going to do my level best to set up some sort of blogging system that will work to keep things happening regularly throughout 2017, I promise >.<


First of all, I have another short up on the Darkness&Good blog this week. It’s an extract from my work in progress, Fox Red. If you’re following along on social media, this is #FoxBook, and the reason I’m sharing an extract with you is…



The first part of Fox Red is being included in this fantastic anthology of sff YA stories! You can find this awesome anthology of stories for teens on Amazon here, and it’ll be available across all other retailers within the next week or so too. NOTE: It’s 99c at the moment, but if you wait a week or so for the price matching to kick in, it’ll be perma-free πŸ˜‰ I’ll remind you about it again once that’s happened, so if you want to wait until then, go for it πŸ™‚

The section of Fox Red that I’m sharing on Darkness&Good is NOT included in the That Moment When anthology, so you get bonus bits of story (woohoo!). And if you like what you see, make sure to head over to my Fox Red page for updates on the story and related things like inspiration images and music πŸ™‚

9 days till holidays. See you on the other side.


New Free Short Story!

Hello! The Darkness&Good blog took a break there for a bit while Liana and I dealt with some Life Things, but I’m pleased to say that we’re open again for business, and free (mostly unedited) short stories will be going up at least 3 weeks out of every four over at! πŸ™‚

Also, we have a new member: Thea van Diepen has agree to join in the madness, hurrah! You can read her first short story right here, followed by Liana’s story from last week – and today, it’s my turn! *jazz hands*.

So yeah. The Darkness&Good blog exists again. You should follow it. There are stories. They are free, and shiny, and awesome πŸ™‚

DARKNESS & GOOD Free Short Story Blog

My Gallbladder Tried To Kill Me, OR, What Even Is This Month, Urgh.

For those not playing along on twitter, March has been the month of all illnesses, also known as the month wherein my gallbladder tried to kill me. We bid farewell to February with weekend-long gastro that struck down me and the baby. Husband was out of town (lucky beast), and Mr 4 was shipped off to the grandparentals for the weekend to avoid plague transmission. Baby not allowed back at daycare for 48 hours, so I had to have Monday/Tuesday off. Okay, thought I. This is not the end of the world. Monday I was not so great myself, but Tuesday, Tuesday bore all the makings of a Nice Quiet Rest Day.


Firstly, I was not allowed to drop Young Spawn off at school, because he’d been cranky and overtired the day before and they feared he might be plague ridden and didn’t want plague at school. Fair call for them, devastating for him and me. Literally. He bawled the entire way home, unable to understand what he’d done wrong to get sent home :\

ANYway, we survive the day, husband arrives home in the late afternoon, I head off to my chiropractor appointment… Only when I get home, part of my back is still niggling, like they didn’t quite catch something. And then we do dinner and bath and bed for the kidlets, and now it’s more than niggling, and it’s my stomach too? Or maybe just my back? Or maybe just my stomach? OR MAYBE GOOD HEAVENS IT’S BOTH AND NOW I’M GOING TO DIE.

What started out as mild discomfort quickly escalated to “I’m going to have a baby in the next hour heaven help me give me drugs” (she says of the two drug-free childbirths >.<) and when we realised at midnight that I was actually seriously in too much pain to even feed the baby, we figured it was probably hospital time. Via ambulance, because I’m cool like that.

(actually because hub driving me would have necessitating hauling the kids along and WHAT ELSE IS PRIVATE HEALTH INSURANCE FOR BUT AMBULANCE RIDES WHEEEEE but anyway)

The ambos were totally chill, even though I’m 99% sure at one point I stopped mid-sentence to LITERALLY ROLL ON THE FLOOR OH THE AGONY, but let’s face it: at that point even I thought it was only super-intense indigestion (body: take THAT woman! Teach YOU to eat a full meal at dinner two nights after you had gastro! Ha HA!).

TL;DR: it was not gastro, and my gallbladder was trying to kill me. At first the doctors were all LOL GALLSTONES YOU CAN GO HOME IN THE MORNING, and then they were all like LOL YOU ARE STILL IN MUCH PAIN WE SHALL ADMIT YOU and then several days later were more like o.O YOU ARE STILL IN PAIN WHY SHOULD THIS BE? I was in hospital for a full week, then spent another week at home recuperating while awaiting surgery, then at work for two long and exhausting days, and then, TA DA! Surgery last Thursday. (a week ago, whoa.)

You know that bit about my gallbladder trying to kill me? This is maybe not quite accurate. Maaaaaybe it would be more accurate to say that my body had been trying to kill my gallbladder, and it had NEARLY SUCCEEDED BECAUSE MY GALLBLADDER WAS GANGRENOUS.

*pauses to pass the vomit bag*

Yeah. I know. *urgh-shudder*. Turns out the entire back wall of the gallbladder was cold stone dead (I can attest to its murky grey dead-flesh appearance, THANKS RECOVERY NURSE WHO THOUGHT IT WAS A STONE o.O) and the organ was gangrenous, and if they’d just let me toddle along without worrying too much about surgery (the initial option), the mortality rate would have been 22%. I fully admit: this is one of those numbers I’m really glad I only learned about AFTER the offending (offended?) organ was gone. I spent most of Thursday afternoon/Friday morning feeling extremely happy to be alive.

And now I have been home for nearly a week, and although my insides would still prefer me to go on a hunger strike (FOOD? WHAT IS THIS STUFF?! You expect us to PROCESS this WITHOUT a GALLBLADDER?!?!?! *goes on strike*), I actually slept on my right side last night for the first time all month!!! This, my friends, is cause for celebration.

Ahem. So. All that new-pretty-websiting-let-me-actually-post-blog-updates that I had planned for March? Yeeeeeeeeeah. I’ll just… sweep these broken pieces of website under the rug here and no one will notice, AMIRITE???

But anyway. The website has a menu again at least, and if you click on any of the pretty links advertising FREE STUFF TO READ you’ll see I’m in the process of putting some of the more popular of my Darkness & Good stories over here too. Woo free stories.

Mostly, however, woo not dying. Not dying is fun. I recommend it.


Wish You Could Take Your Novel From Drab To Fab In ONE Editing Pass?

Hi again! Sorry, I’m late posting this because I had the worst trilogy of days EVER at the end of last week and couldn’t get to the computer to let you know, but Holly’s How To Revise Your Novel course is OPEN!! It’s closing on December 15 at 11:59pm US EST, so you have a couple of days to think about it still πŸ™‚ Remember though, if you miss out this time, it won’t be open again until about this time next year (unless there’s enough interest, in which case there /might/ be another intake in about 6 months :)), and if you sign up in this round, you get the spiffy bonuses listed in bold below as a thank you from me πŸ™‚

You guys, the size of this course is EPIC. I was in the very first intake, back in 2009, and I have not regretted it for a moment. I loved How To Think Sideways, but How To Revise Your Novel more than anything else I’ve read on writing before or since changed the way I work for the better. The course is huge and it takes a long time – it’s a 5 or 6 month course, one module a week (I say 5 or 6 because it was supposed originally to be 4, became 5 when I took it with that first intake, and I’m pretty sure Holly has added enough bonuses over the years to make it a 6 month course now) and it is a LOT of work – but it’s the ONLY course I’ve EVER seen that take the whole editing and revision process and breaks it down into small, manageable chunks.

No theory: it’s completely practical and hands-on experience, designed to capture as many problems with your novel as humanly possible in ONE SINGLE EDIT. I know authors that have slaved away writing 7, 12, 22 drafts of their novel; How To Revise Your Novel is specifically designed to help you cut down on the number of drafts you need to take your story from rough draft to finished product. (This is, of course, dependant on you having a clear idea of what you want your finished product to look like – but the course teaches you how to develop that, too ;)).

Look, I love this course. It’s hands-down the best writing resource I’ve ever read/used/taken, and I could rave about it for hours. If you have questions about the content, shoot me an email through the contact form (link in the menu above) or on twitter (@inkylaurens) and I’ll happily rabbit away to you about it πŸ™‚ And even better: Holly offers a no-questions-asked cancellation. When you sign up, you pay each month upfront, but if you cancel at any point during the month, she’ll refund you pro-rata for the lessons you haven’t received yet, and you keep access to the lessons you have received – as well as membership in the forums so you can still hang out with your classmates and build your writerly connections πŸ™‚

Holly’s copy is included below so you can see what she has to say about the course, but before I go I wanted to let you know about some special bonuses you’ll receive from me if you decide to join up through my link. As a thank you, you’ll receive:

  • A free ebook copy of my forthcoming book on worldbuilding, From The Ground Up (Oct 2016);
  • A free ebook copy of Krista Ball’s What Kings Ate And Wizards Drank;Β 
  • A free critique of your FIRST 20 PAGES once you’ve completed the HTRYN course;
  • A free ebook copy of Holly’s Strange Arrivals, the textbook for the free How To Write Flash Fiction That Doesn’t Suck course (also an excellent course – and free!!);Β 
  • A free ebook copy of Holly’s How To Write Page-Turning Scenes; and
  • One free book, e or print, of your choice, from Inkprint Press (worldwide postage included). πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚Β 

So: are you ready to sign up? I really think you’ll love it πŸ™‚ (Also, if you happen to be currently taking, or have graduated from, Holly’s How To Think Sideways, you get a discount on the course – your link is this one, and it will ask you to sign in with your current log-in details.)

Finally, because I believe so strongly in this course, I want you to have the opportunity to buy it even WITHOUT using my links. So, this link here is a non-affiliate link; if you sign up by clicking anywhere on this sentence, I won’t receive a thing (but you also won’t get my bonuses ;)).


That’s it from me. Holly’s copy for the course is below. I hope to see you in the classroom!! πŸ™‚



It’s been a bumpy road getting here, but How To Revise Your Novel has just gone live.

For the next seven days, UNTIL 11:59 PM on TUESDAY, Dec. 15, you can register for the class that has been teaching writers how turn rough, lumpy, awkward, and sometimes just outright BROKEN first drafts into professional-quality fiction since Nov. 23, 2009.

The class started out back in 2009 having two registrations a year. I changed that at some point, but when I did, the vibrancy of the community of writers that developed in the classroom (a sort of war-buddies-who’d-shared-hardships-and-SEEN-things camaraderie) disappeared.

Limited-time registration is back.

Once again, How To Revise Your Novel is only going to be available either one or two times a year.

I promise the course will be available to a new class once a year.

I’ll only make How To Revise Your Novel available a second time in any given year if I have enough students waiting to register to fill a second class.

Once you ownΒ How To Revise Your Novel, you can use the classroom and (soon to be added) forum year-round, retake any lessons, go through the initial process and then the streamlined process with every book (or story, screenplay, biography or any other fiction or personal nonfiction you write).

I’ve even had students tell me it helped them with their nonfiction. The class is NOT focused on that, though.

If you do a NaNoWriMo novel a year, then next year you’ll already have the class. And the year after that. And the year after that.

If you write a book every two months, you’ll have everything in the classroom waiting to help you make every one of those books better.

If you write a story a day, what you’ll learn in this class will show you how to make those short stories better, too.

And if you just want to write one or two novels, but you want to make them great?

How To Revise Your Novel will be there for you for them, too.
Being a working writer who creates great stories that readers love isn’t some magical gift of the gods. It is a learned skill. It takes a lot of words, and a lot of work.


Any writer willing to put in the work can learn the necessary skills, and if you’re willing to apply those skills to every word you write, YOU CAN get good.

Ready to join?Β 



How To Revise Your NovelΒ is not an easy class.

You cannot learn how to revise your work by READING lessons.

THERE IS NO THEORY inΒ How To Revise Your Novel.

Every bit of it is practical, step-by-step instructions.

You have to actually print out your manuscript, print out the worksheets, and DO the work.

And with your first professional-process revision, there is a LOT of work.

Here’s the good news.

The first REAL revision you do will be the MOST PAINFUL, MOST DIFFICULT, MOST AGONIZING and occasionally, the MOST HORRIFYING revision you will ever do.

How is that GOOD news, you’re asking?

LaughingΒ (If somebody told me I was walking into pain, you better believeΒ I’DΒ ask.)

So here’s why it’s good news.

Discovering during your first revision everything you do wrong over and over in your writing teaches you not to make those mistakes anymore. Your writing becomes better when you revise, and your NEXT first-draft manuscript will be better from the beginning.

So your next novel’s revision will be EASIER to do. Usually, it will be a LOT easier.
Trust me, with each new manuscript, you’ll invent brand-new mistakes that you’ll only discover in your next revision.

Ask me how I know…Β Undecided

But learning to do a real, solid, step-by-step one-time-through revision will make you a better writer, and every book you revise from then on…

…will also make you a better writer.

So, if this sounds like what you’re looking for, go now, and join me and the next class of writers getting ready to get GOOD.

I’m ready to join How To Revise Your Novel now!

FREE Revision Workshop Available NOW!

So, I mentioned the other day that Holly Lisle, who is acclaimed around the nets and amongst authors for her high-quality learn-to-write classes, is opening her How To Revise Your Novel course for the ONLY time in the next 6 months, and possibly the only time until this time next year.

What I didn’t mention, because I forgot, is that for this week only, Holly has a FREE revision workshop that takes you through the basic steps of revising your story. It’s like a taster for HTRYN, and it’s freeeeeeee!!! πŸ™‚ The only catch is that you have to join by Monday if you want to get the whole course. Not sure what happens after that – you only get the remaining lessons? That seems weird, so maybe it just closes on Monday. I don’t know. But you have like four whole days remaining, and it’s free with no strings attached, so you should totally head over and sign up πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

I’m going to sign up because I’m about to dive into revisions on two novels and a novella, and I want to see what her free workshop has compared to HTRYN; Holly’s pretty well known for including tasty bonuses with pretty much all her courses, and I’m keen to see what she has in store this time πŸ™‚

Anyway, link again: free plot workshop.

And because I want you to know that I really do believe in Holly’s courses, THIS LINK is a non-affiliate link. Click through there and no one except Holly will ever know πŸ™‚ (But of course, if you do use my affiliate links, I’ll have some shiny bonuses for you which I’ll tell you about on my Monday when prepping for two market stalls and a major birthday party is over >.< πŸ™‚ )