This Week! (& Last Week!)

It’s been awhile since we’ve updated everyone on our recently published audio. This post is to serve as an update for the last couple of weeks, but things are going to be a bit different…

We’re going to start re-directing you to where the audio books can be purchased!

Without further ado, here they are!


Bree Livingston

Her Second Chance Billionaire Boyfriend


Eva Chase

Falling For Gods


Ivy Layne

Unraveled

Compromising the Billionaire

The Counterfeit Billionaire


BJ Harvey

Third Strike


London Lovett

Death in the Park


RK Lander

Path of a Novice

Tickle Monster

You read that title correctly. We’re talking about a mythological creature who tickles his victims to death…not a way I want to go. We’re traveling to West Asia, and for the next four weeks, this is where we’ll stay.


 

surale.jpg

Şüräle Turkey

“Horned, woolly humanoid that tickles people to death.”

Basic Facts:

  • The Şüräle has long fingers (used for tickling), a horn on its forehead (like a unicorn), and a woolly body (similar to that of a sheep.) Somehow, this terrifying sounding creature lures people into the thicket of the forest it resides in and tickles them to death.
  • It can transform its body, usually into a human. The human will almost always have glowing eyes and wear its shoes backwards. Lo and behold, this may or may not be how they lure their victims in.
  • If you’re lucky enough, you can befriend the monster and learn the secrets to magic. People will make deals with it and gain the creature’s protection of livelihood and animal stock. Beware though…if the Şüräle doesn’t like you, they’ll make you ill or force you to get lost.
  • In a lighthearted way, the Şüräle can be a jokester; there’s a myth about them taking the axes of woodcutters and hiding them.
  • In order to get the Şüräle off your back if you come across it, you have to turn your clothes inside out and wear your shoes backwards.

Constant Evolving

 

Reading a collection of words, more commonly known as reading books, has been the oldest form of entertainment for the privileged. As time has gone on and reading has become necessary and accessible to more…and let’s be honest here, illiteracy is an issue and we should acknowledge that…we want to ask the question: what’s next?

technology.gif

We have traditionally-printed novels, in the masses. There are eBooks, in the millions, for those who like to read on the run. The technology which has given us audiobooks makes it easier for those just as busy to listen and work, not losing out on the art of reading. Visual storytelling, choose-your-own adventure stories, Kindle in Motion…the list goes on!

But what technology is on the current rise? What can inspire the next generation of readers – to keep the act of reading alive?

Do you see yourself creating a robot, or purchasing one, to have creative discussions with about the books you’re reading? Or maybe using voice tech, we can pick and choose who we want to narrate the book we’re reading when it’s convenient for us.

What do you think is next? And what’s your favorite way or ways to read?

We want to hear!

Dancing Fireball

This week is our last week in Eastern Asia. Disregard the photo chosen for this week’s creature; there weren’t many options that really embodied what the creature is but there is very little to go on! You can be the judge.

Next week, we embark on mythological creatures deriving from Western Asia. Join us on our journey around the world!


Santelmo.jpg

Santelmo | Philippines

“Spiritual presence in the form of a dancing orb of flame.”

Basic Facts:

  • The name santelmo translates to ‘St. Elmo’s fire.’ It is also referred to as ‘Santo Elmo.’
  • Recently, the fires seen dancing along have been debunked by scientists…even though these fires have been reported since the Spanish era (that’s almost 500 years ago!)
  • Where did the name St. Elmo come from? To be clear, St. Elmo is the patron saint of sailors. Whenever the weather phenomenon (which is what scientists have deemed the fire) occurred, sailors saw it as a good sign. That’s a bit scary to be called a good thing, if you ask me.
  • If the santelmo was inspired by a weather phenomenon which occurs at sea, what does the creature look like? The best description is as follows (from Cryptid wikia!):

St. Elmo’s fires have ranged from a ghostly dancing flame to natural fireworks. It usually is of a blue of bluish-white colour attached to fixed, grounded conductors and has a lifetime of minutes. The flame is heatless and non-consuming occasionally accompanied by a hissing sound. These latter properties prove the myths of a spiritual presence.

  • The ball of fire spirit can come from the spirits of those who die in a river, the sea or while it’s raining. These versions of the santelmo are dangerous. They’ll drown someone!

Woman of the Mountain

maria makiling.png

Maria Makiling Philippines

“Nymph guardian spirit of Mt. Makiling in Laguna”

Basic Facts:

  • She is considered a fairy or forest nymph, who is guardian to the mountain and helps the villagers and townspeople who utilize the resources the mountain provides.
  • The reason the guardian of the mountain is a woman and not a man resorts back to what people see when they look at the mountain: a woman’s face and two breasts, with long hair going down her back.
  • When spotted, the woman is seen to be young and doesn’t age. She’s usually surrounded by a white fog and her clothes are radiant.
  • There are a variety of superstitions when it comes to Maria…she’s not exactly pleasant all the time and will steal men to live with her in the mountain. Ladies, you’re safe…for now…
  • Her powers include: immortality, magic, nature control, conjuration, and invisibility.

The Perfect Elephant

airavata.png

AiravataIndia

“A pristine, winged elephant that creates rain, steed to the God, Indra.”

Basic Facts:

  • Other names for Airavata are: abrha-matanga (“elephant of the clouds”), naga-malla (“the fighting elephant”), or Arkasodra (“brother of the sun”). The name, Airavata, loosely translates to “belonging to Iravati.”
  • This isn’t a normal elephant…it has ten tusks and five trunks. To top it off it’s white and spotless!
  • Last week, we talked about the churning of the ocean of milk, which created several treasures (or mythological creatures) alongside uchchaihshravas – one being Airavata. This is according to one legend – not the final answer!
  • The lovely Airavata is actually incorporated into a couple of flags like Laos and Thailand.
  • The Airavata is one of eight deities to look over the eight points of a compass. That’s quite the job!

 

Swimming With Revenge

bake kujira.jpg

Bake – KujiraJapan

“Ghost whale that is accompanied by bizarre birds and unknown fish.”

Basic Facts:

  • Another name for the bakekujira is honekujira, which translates to “bone whale.” They pretty much are undead whales who are followed by weird looking birds and funky fish.
  • They can be found in the sea of Japan. The people will see the ghost whale on rainy nights, off the coast…of whaling villages. See where we’re going here?
  • What powers can this haunting whale possibly have? Legend has it, when you see the whale, you’re cursed. Usually what happens is, someone will become cursed, return to their village and the village will suffer at the hand of the curse. Plague, famine, fires…any disaster you can imagine. Prepare.
  • Do you remember the yōkai from our last post? The bakekujira is one, too.
  • There are some explanations as to why the legend came in to existence about this whale. Someone has said it could have been an enemy village, creating a fake whale to haunt the fisherman out at sea. There is another idea about a whale carcass carrying disease to a village and not a ghost whale.

Real Endings Need Love Too!

real boy.gifWe’re not saying there are fake endings floating around in the writing world but what we are trying to say is realism is a wonderful way to end a book. Seriously! To remind your reader their head shouldn’t be in the clouds will have them feeling a lot.

Take a moment to think about a not-so-happy ending you read and stuck with you. There’s a reason why you remember it…it’s memorable due to being different than all the rest. We also want to mention: these endings don’t have to be sad, necessarily. Just real.

Sometimes people like the chaos and fire-burning-everywhere ending to a book they’re invested in. Or the cookie-cutter romantic, hero saves everyone at the end of the day. It’s about preference.

Or shock value.

You choose.

Age of Escapism

escape.gifWith the end of year in sight, we tend to highlight expected sales trends of the upcoming year. We’ve seen high sales in politically-driven pieces, success behind female leads, and diversity taking the reigns.

Say hello to our oldest and dearest friend, Escapism. Too dark? Fear not, we mean well with this. Listen here: escapism isn’t a new concept. It’s been around forever. Since entertainment conception came to fruition, to be exactly. It’s a drive for many to pick up books and escape to another world, where chaos can be mended.

To say the least, the consumption of books may rise when we think about what’s going on whenever we turn the news on. With this chaotic day and age, there may be an interest in any genre, really. As long as there is provided escape to a new world.

Help provide the escape for potential readers. Provide the bridge between their reality and your fictional world. Get to writing.

Nine Imps

dokkaebi.jpg

Dokkaebi Korea

“Impish spirits that transform from inanimate objects.”

Basic Facts:

  • Also called Korean goblins, they like to play tricks on humans (or help them – it can go either way.)
  • Physical descriptions of the dokkaebi can be found on ancient roof tiles but are usually frightening to look at.
  • Into wrestling? So are these spirits! in order to pass them, you should be able to wrestle your way out of their clutches of evil! Their weak spots include their right side and (some of them are one-legged) a simple push will get them down.
  • There are different types of dokkaebi. To be frank, there are nine common types.
  • Sometimes, rituals are hosted to get in the good graces of the dokkaebi but other times.