New Key Art for The Matriarch: “The Waiting Tree”

Inspired by a scene from the new book, Janiss prepares to vanquish a foe. Even though she’s vamped out and her eyes are blackened, she has also chosen to arm herself with a Decapitator. I may have to make this into a poster!

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“A Third Choice” (A Matriarch Short Story)

A Matriarch short story by Kevin A. Ranson

JanissStakeOnlyYes, it hurts. Believe me, I know. Keeping as still as possible is the best thing you can do right now.

Ironic, isn’t it? A piece of wood sticking out of your chest isn’t killing you, but it’s causing so much pain you probably wish it would.

I’ll also apologize for all the motion. We’ve taken precautions, but being inside a moving vehicle makes it more difficult.

Of course, the best idea is I could remove that stake…but there would be conditions.

I don’t know if you’ve ever been staked before or even how long you’ve been a vampire, but from the way you were being treated by your sire, we guessed it wasn’t voluntary. Those kinds of relationships rarely end well, so we interceded. You watched us destroy your maker, but we both know what stays in our heads. Yes, I still have a little of mine,too.

Besides that, the other thing you’ll have to worry about is yourself.

Continue reading ““A Third Choice” (A Matriarch Short Story)”

Guest Appearance: Comicpalooza 2015, May 22-25

I’ll be running a few panels (and running around in general) at the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston, Texas at Comicpalooza 2015, May 22-25. Panels, cosplay, roleplaying, celebrities, and all that kind of stuff. Plan to come on out and say “Howdy!”

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What’s a Vampire? No, a REAL Vampire.

FangsAlotWhen someone says “You’re like a vampire!” to a living person, that’s a simile, a comparison using like or as. When some says “You’re a vampire!” to a living person, that’s a metaphor, a comparison NOT using like or as. Living people are not actual vampires because vampires are DEAD THINGS that, by definition, are not alive – otherwise, they would not be a vampire. Feel free to compare all you like, but the following is the ONLY definition of a vampire:

vam·pire

/ˈvamˌpī(ə)r/
noun
a mystically animated corpse that imitates its living victims so it can feed off of their blood.

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I Hope to Never Meet One of My Own Vampires

JanissReadingJanissSome of you may be aware of the Vampire Community, not just fans of the genre who embrace the lifestyle but those who believe themselves to be actual vampires. Psychic vampires absolutely exist, stealing your energy or lending it with their very presence, but I’m not talking about (to quote Ian from The Matriarch) “a mystically animated corpse that imitates the living so (it) can feed off of it.” Do they exist? I hope not – both for my sake and their own – because if they ever find out I created their world and inflicted them with their condition, I wholly expect them to be rather pissed off at me.

What I am saying is this: as a fiction writer, I do not believe what I create is real anywhere but on the page. These characters exist in my mind and that is what I share, and there are things I write about I wouldn’t wish on anyone…but, alas, such atrocities make for interesting storytelling.

I also don’t hate anyone calling themselves a vampire, but like an organized religion, there are a FEW who take it upon themselves to wage a personal crusade to say “yours isn’t real because *I* am real.” The Bard’s phrase “the lady doth protest too much” fully applies here with the same level of annoyance as believers knocking on your door Saturday morning to tell you “the good news” about our Lord and Savior (we all have our little illusions; far be it from me to take away yours).

Finally, we all wear masks, and the first step in any personal change is to act the part; it isn’t a far stretch of the imagination to think the human mind can convince itself of anything (Nic Cage’s “Vampire’s Kiss” comes to mind as an example) until the mask becomes the truth. All of this said, however, no vampire character I have ever created would log onto a social network expressly for the purpose of convincing the world that they’re real; it is far more likely they’ll deny everything and smile at the ones screaming in all caps across the internet.

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Janiss Has a Holiday Message for Cedarcrest Sanctum

CedarcrestHeader2015smallFor the very first time, the executive administrator of Cedarcrest Sanctum, Janiss Connelly, takes the reigns of the annual holiday address from Timothy Harker to wish a happy holidays to all – and why she’ll never turn anyone into a vampire.

Let’s just say this isn’t your usual Christmas message; read it HERE.

And Happy New Year!
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First Draft of The Matriarch III is Complete! #amwriting

TheMatriarch3WorkingTitleLogoSmall58,800 words written in 48 days completes the first draft of this third book (out of a planned four-book series). Now it’s time for a well-earned step away, letting the words settle on the page for a bit before trading “good enough for now” up to “as near to perfect as any mere mortal can hope to be.”

Like the first two novels, I have strived to infuse as many human elements as possible into this vampire story. There are plenty of individual elements, but to bring the adventure to life, the risks and the rewards, you must also show love, hate, fear, surprise, betrayal, jealousy, and all the rest. Plot is what happens to our characters; story is how it affects them.

Coming soon: the official title, the actual cover, chapter teasers, and the publication date! As always, there is plenty more information and other goodies at Cedarcrest Sanctum.

I cannot wait to show you what I’ve been working on!

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