When Wicked Game officially hits the shelves across North America today, my work is done (except for the small detail of handing in the sequel this Friday). Release days are about the reader, not the writer. The reader finally has a chance to form his or her own relationship with the book, outside of reviews and ads and endless blog posts stretching back to the day the contract was signed (eighteen months ago, in my case).
Getting ready for a book’s release is sort of like planning a big party or a wedding. Prepare as much as you can, handle the variables you can control (which, in publishing, isn’t much), then sit back and take the rest as it comes. And just like with a party, don’t let the stress get in the way of enjoying yourself. (I'm of course a total hypocrite--I've been on the verge of a nervous breakdown all day.)
If you're stopping by for the first time, here's a bit about the book. If you're sick of hearing about it, skip down to the new stuff.
Late-night radio you can sink your teeth into
Recovering con artist Ciara Griffin is trying to live the straight life, even if it means finding a (shudder!) real job. She takes an internship at a local radio station, whose late-night time-warp format features 1940s blues, 60s psychedelia, 80s Goth, and more, all with an uncannily authentic flair. Ciara soon discovers how the DJs maintain their cred: they’re vampires, stuck forever in the eras in which they were turned.
Ciara’s first instinct, as always, is to cut and run. But communications giant Skywave wants to buy WMMP and turn it into just another hit-playing clone. Without the station—and the link it provides to their original Life Times—the vampires would “fade,” becoming little more than mindless ghosts of the past. Suddenly a routine corporate takeover becomes a matter of life and un-death.
To boost ratings and save the lives of her strange new friends, Ciara re-brands the station as “WVMP, the Lifeblood of Rock ’n’ Roll.” In the ultimate con, she hides the DJs’ vampire nature in plain sight, disguising the bloody truth as a marketing gimmick. WVMP becomes the hottest thing around—next to Ciara’s complicated affair with grunge vamp Shane McAllister. But the “gimmick” enrages a posse of ancient and powerful vampires who aren’t so eager to be brought into the light. Soon the stakes are higher-and the perils graver-than any con game Ciara’s ever played…
Smith-Ready’s musical references are spot on, as is her take on corporate radio’s creeping airwave hegemony. Add in the irrepressible Ciara, who grew up in a family of grifters, and the results rock. — Publisher’s Weekly
A colorful premise and engaging characters make the author’s (Aspect of Crow trilogy; Requiem for the Devil) latest a fun read. Recommended for all urban fantasy and paranormal romance collections. — Library Journal
WICKED GAME is an urban fantasy thrill ride. Not only is the story incredibly entertaining and exciting—even a little romantic—but it's also sexy as hell. — Simply Romance Reviews
And now, a humble request:
As with most series, the longevity of the WVMP vampires depends on reader enthusiasm, which is as it should be. So if you like Wicked Game, tell your friends, family, bookseller, librarian, and that guy/girl you’re always making eye contact with at the bus stop (no, not that one, the other one). That way, there'll be many more books to come.
Thanks to every one of you, whether you've known me since I was a wee bairn, or whether you've just heard of me for the first time this minute.
Now it's time for me to shut up and write. And let you read.