Roxanne Bland

I am a genre-bending novelist of fantasy, science fiction and romance. My motto: Reality is highly overrated.

When Gods Die

Thanksgiving is a day celebrated in America, commemorating the feast the Puritans gave themselves in thanks to their god for his grace in allowing them to survive their first year in the New World. Legend has it that the prior winter had been bitter and many of their number had succumbed. Legend also has it that the Native peoples attended this feast to celebrate their friendship with their new neighbors.

It’s all lies, of course. Just another example of America’s penchant for whitewashing her history. The Puritans murdered the Natives because they were “heathens” and thus an abomination in the eyes of their god.

Today, Thanksgiving is a holiday for people to celebrate their families and friends by breaking bread together and having a grand old time in each other’s company while doing so.

My Thanksgiving holiday sucked, thank you. There were several reasons for that but the main one is my family continues to blithely ignore my physical failings, leaving me out of a yearly ritual that’s supposed to bring a sense of belonging and joy. I have cataracts–not a bad case–but I can’t see well enough to drive at night. In the winter months, when days are short, I have to leave by a certain time to get back to my house before it gets dark. If the food is not on the table by a certain time #2, I can’t partake. This year, my niece had planned to bring a dish that I love, one her father… Continue reading

More On The Underground Book Promotion

Tired of me flogging my book yet? Too bad. Lots more to come.

So–on November 11 at 10 AM Eastern, I’m featured on the Goddess Talks podcast talking about–wait for it–The Underground. It’s live, so you can hear me hem and haw and otherwise fuck up when I get asked an uncomfortable question. Not really. I’m pretty good at answering those. Guess all those years of public speaking were good for something.

If you can make it (it’s a holiday in the U.S. and you won’t be working so there’s no reason why you can’t) here’s the access info:

Join TalkShoe Meeting: https://talkshoe.com/show/goddess-talks-with-authors-kristy-denice-bock-and-raven-starr One tap mobile: +1 605-562-0444,,8061356# Dial-in using your phone: United States – Midwest: +1 605-562-0444 Show ID: 8061356

And I’ve got a virtual blog tour also starting on November 11 and running through the first week of December. For those of you who don’t know, a vbt is a promotional tool that replaces the fly-around-the-country book signing tours that authors–some authors, anyway–used to get from their publishers. Vbts are far more affordable (duh!) and without the exhaustion and jet lag. And, of course, you can book as many vbts with as many companies as you like. I know a few brave souls who put together tours without help but I’ve been told that unless you have LOTS of time and LOTS of patience–and I have neither–pay for it.

Here’s that schedule:

November 11 Booklikes
http://roxannerhoads.booklikes.com

November 12 Fang-tastic Books  (Guest Blog)
http://fang-tasticbooks.blogspot.com

November 13 Paranormalists
https://paranormalists.blogspot.com/

November… Continue reading

Sittin’ Around Bullshittin’

Editing The Moreva of Astoreth–still. Jesus fucking christ. The pages look as if they’ve been dipped in pee. A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, it would have been blue pencil. Anyway, it’d have been nice if Adobe had used a different color, one that didn’t look so much like body waste. Like a nice magenta. Or even green. And just think–once I’ve finished the edits, I have to input them into the ms in Word. Yeah, I know I can directly edit the Adobe version, but I didn’t create it and it wasn’t shared. So I have to do it the hard way.

My new desk chairs are fabulous! The old ones were cheap and worn out. The height adjustment thingie didn’t work anymore, I had to roll up a towel and put it behind me for back support, ugh. Now I’m at the right height for working at the computer. My back doesn’t hurt when I stand up. Of course, it would help if I didn’t sit at the desk so much, but I forget and only get up when my ass starts hurting.

I got one of those Happy Lights. How come I ain’t happy? REFUND!!! No, seriously. I’ve been using it while I work–day job stuff, because it won’t fit on my personal desk. Too much shit lying around. The lack of available outlets on this side of the room is also a problem. So is it working? Well, I really can’t tell… Continue reading

Winter’s Coming. Gaah.

Gawd, I hate winter. It’s dark, cold, and it makes me wish I was dead. We won’t even talk about snow. I have gait problems as it is, and when snow turns to ice, that’s it for me. I ain’t goin’ nowhere.

And it’s November. Fuck.

So The Underground received a very nice 5-star editorial review from Literary Titan (link at the bottom). On Amazon, it has 11 reviews and is holding at 4 stars. That’s pretty much the same as the prior version of the book. Not that I expected it to change much. But it’s funny–since its first incarnation, readers have either loved The Underground or hated it. I can see why some would hate it. The story deals with some pretty dark subjects, as I wrote in my little essay. Some readers can’t deal with the sex. Yes, the story drips with it and some find that to be a problem but others find the sex to be too rough (one reader called it “nasty sex.” Isn’t that cute?). For still others, the two scenes that depict rape and the one where the person being raped had been abused as a child was too much. The four points of view present problems for some readers. From the comments, it confuses them. Maybe they’re not used to reading more than one point of view? Or, maybe it’s while the story proceeds in a linear fashion it develops from different points of view which they might not be able… Continue reading

Wonder Woman’s Real Name Is Zelena

Here’s the cover for my book, The Final Victim, which I haven’t written yet. Hopefully, I’ll get to it soon and have it finished by February.

Zelena is an incredible designer. She can take my garbled suggestions and turn them into something bold and eye-catching–like she did here. I’m so glad I hooked up with her!

Days of Manias Past

Went to see my shrink on Saturday. In explaining my rage and disgust with myself over my current financial predicament, I told her the reason for my intense feelings is that this isn’t the first time it’s happened. The difference between then and now is I hadn’t dug myself in so deep I couldn’t dig myself out.

So I started regaling her with some of my past exploits while manic. Like how I ended up with FIVE full-length fur coats. While I was still commuting, in winter it got seriously cold on those train platforms. When the 7:15 AM express came whipping through, it was like you’d been plunged into the Arctic. It occurred to me that a fur coat might make my commute more bearable. I bought one. It worked. Then I slipped into mania and bought four more. Oh, they’re beautiful, all right. I pay handsomely to keep them up. But I stopped commuting to work in 2008, and I haven’t worn any of them since Obama’s first inaugural in 2009. Yeah–they’ve been sitting either in my closet or at the storage place since then. I also have a gorgeous sterling flatware set, service for eight. Tell me, why would I need something like that? I don’t entertain. Hell, I don’t even like PEOPLE. And then there was the time I went crazy for loose colored gemstones. I had a grand plan to have them made into custom jewelry. Problem is, I don’t wear jewelry. I have pierced… Continue reading

Drawn And Quartered

I can’t believe it’s October-freakin’-12th already.

Shit is pulling me in so many directions I feel as if I’m being drawn and quartered.

The Underground dropped on October 1. Didn’t get as many pre-orders as I would have liked but I’m not disappointed, either. Especially considering I didn’t get going on drumming up pre-launch buzz until the last week of August, or something like that. Last June, my book designer was working on Invasion and worked on it until the first week of August or so, when I interrupted her with the updated The Underground manuscript. So she went to work on that. I took up Invasion and gave it a fine-toothed comb edit. Funny thing is, I don’t remember asking her to work on Invasion way back then. But I don’t remember a whole lot of shit, anyway. I advertised on a whole lot of websites. The preorder price was 99 cents. It will stay at 99 cents until October 31. I’m hanging on to the price that long because I’ve got more ads coming up in the coming weeks. After the 31st, it’ll go up to $2.99. And then we’ll start the process all over with Invasion. And then the Moreva of Astoreth. I can tell you this–once this is done, I am not messing around with these books anymore. I have to stop being a goddamned perfectionist and learn to let go. Besides, I’m itching to write new stuff. But I want to get these… Continue reading

It’s Over. It’s Finally Over.

This has been the week from hell. It feels like last Monday happened sometime last year. In fact, I don’t even remember what happened last Monday.

It seemed things just…fell apart. Me, my dog, my house–everything. Was supposed to have a dental appointment, one that keeps getting rescheduled for one reason or another. So I get into my truck and see that a cable or something has come loose from whatever it is it was supposed to be attached to and now one end is lying on the floor. And I smell gasoline. Well hell, I sure wasn’t going to go barreling down the highway with cables dangling and the smell of gas assaulting my nostrils.

Then Daisy collapses. Repeatedly. The arthritis in her hips and knees is worsening, which is not surprising, given her age. I took her in for k-laser treatment last week but it didn’t seem to last, so I called the vet and said she needed the shots, too. I bought the laser/shots package and she had her first injection the other day. The two together really do help. She collapsed today but that was because she went for a walk in the backyard and it was too much for her. I’m sad she collapsed but the fact she felt confident to walk that far is heartening.

I sold one of my jewelry watches on ebay, the 18K gold and diamond one. Went for a paltry $900, which is really paltry considering what I paid for… Continue reading

The Moreva of Astoreth

Okay, so we now have a new cover for The Moreva of Astoreth. At least I don’t have to go through the bs of relaunch because of a simple title change.

This was my vision all along. I nixed it with the first designer because I listened to another’s opinion and I shouldn’t have. The second design was closer, but the guy took my suggestions with pretty much a grain of salt and just did whatever the fuck he wanted.

This, though–this is IT. Exactly.

I think it’s funny I had to go all the way to Eastern Europe to find someone who understood what I was talking about when I said I wanted the female figure to have “black girl hair.”

Edited: Actually, this is the fourth cover. I forgot about the first one–an outfit in England designed it. Just awful. I can’t believe I paid for that shit.

Ciao.

book cover

The End

It’s coming.

Last June, my 85-year-old mother fell and broke her hip. She’s mending nicely, champing at the bit to get out of the house on her terms, driving, traveling, and all the rest. While she convalesces, my 85-year-old father has borne the lion’s share of the burden of her care. I’ve helped out whenever asked–taking days off from work, whatever is needed. In doing so, I’ve been able to observe them close-up. And I don’t like what I see.

My father and mother are the same age. I watch my father move about the house. He moves slower, now. His steps are no longer as sure as they were five, seven years ago. He doesn’t look sickly–for their age, both my parents are in pretty good health–but he seems smaller, frailer. Taking care of my mother has been hard on him. He’s tired, I can tell. His mind is still sharp, though. We talk about current events and such and his insights always enlighten me. The way he correlates the past to the present. Like I was wondering why the Democrats just didn’t go ahead and start impeachment proceedings against 45. He said it was because they don’t have anything on him, nothing that would stick. He pointed out that when Sen. Goldwater confronted President Nixon, the senator told the president he had a choice: Resign or be impeached. He also told Nixon if he chose to fight, there was enough evidence to convict, “and the Senate will convict… Continue reading