Friday, October 21, 2011

Mind over Monsters by Jennifer Harlow-Interview, giveaway:Bewitching Tour Stop

Mind Over Monsters By Jennifer Harlow
ISBN-10: 0-7387-2667-2
ISBN-13: 978-0-7387-2667-0
US $14.95 • CAN $16.95
Trade Paperback Original • 53/16 x 8 • 288 pp.

October 2011 Paranormal heroes take on zombies in this funny and thrilling debut.

Very few people know the truth about Beatrice Alexander. She’s no ordinary schoolteacher with a fondness for classic movies. Beatrice can move objects with her mind, an embarrassing and dangerous skill that she’s never learned to master — or embrace.

After nearly killing her brother by accident, she joins F.R.E.A.K.S. The Federal Response to Extra-Sensory and
Kindred Supernaturals is a top-secret offshoot of the FBI that "neutralizes" ghouls, trolls, and  other monsters threatening humanity.

Beatrice has no desire to become Buffy the vampire slayer. But F.R.E.A.K.S. offers training
to control her power. Also, she doesn’t feel like such a freak next to the other supernatural
members, including a cute former detective who’s a werewolf and an unbearable vampire
determined to seduce Beatrice. Despite a natural instinct to flee from hideous, bloodthirsty
zombies, Beatrice must prove herself on her first mission to find a cunning necromancer


Oliver is oblivious to my plight. He’s busy with the veritable wall of walking dead surrounding us. The moment he knocks one into a tree or tombstone another seems to take its place in the line like a zombie Pez dispenser. Two of them, one a man and the other unidentifiable, grab Oliver but he pushes them away. Another grabs my arm and tries to bite, but I kick it away. My martial arts trainer would be so proud. His buddy behind me grabs the other arm and chomps down on it. I scream. The gun in the other hand reaches her forehead and a second later, her head is nothing but puzzle pieces. Enough of this.

Something I’ve never felt seizes control. My body turns warm then hot in an instant, like someone’s switched on my boiler. My breath becomes ragged and then stops. The breeze stops moving and everything but the dozen soldiers surrounding us turn black. There are no screams, no moans, no Oliver. The air moves toward me, inside me, through every pore of my body. What feels like two hands squeeze either side of my brain, but it doesn’t hurt for once. I don’t know what’s happening to me…but I like it. I close my eyes and feel the blood trickle out of my nose. I release. Power explodes out of me like a fiery gust of wind in a hurricane. It knocks me on my back. Several daggers plunge into my brain. I cry out, clutching my head. Oh God, it hurts! Just stop it! Hands grab my shoulders.

"Trixie!" a familiar voice shouts. I know that voice…who… "Open your eyes!"

I do. It’s blurry at first, but I blink until I see Oliver kneeling beside me. God, he’s good looking when he’s worried. "My dear, can you speak?"


"Never mind. Can you walk?"

"Um…" Without letting me finish he hoists me up by the arms, my injured one throbbing. When I’m up the sight before me draws a gasp. Oh…my…lord. There’s nothing left but the kind of destruction I see on TV after a tornado. Trees lie on their sides, tangled roots above ground. Every headstone within forty feet around rests on its side, a few older ones are now nothing but pebbles and dust. The zombie horde is literally nothing but pieces. Twitching legs, arms, jaws still trying to make their way toward us litter the grass. Every piece bigger than a foot still tries to continue on their mission, but I doubt any of them is a threat to us anymore. A few fresher corpses remain intact but shuffle far in the distance.

"Did I…"

"Remind me never to anger you," Oliver says, serious as death. I’ve scared a vampire. Holy heck. And we take off running.


How did you start your writing career?
I’ve always been a writer. I’ve been telling stories in some shape or form since I was a child, either through dolls or pen on paper. I never considered being an author until I was in high school and began writing screenplays. I was convinced I was the next Tarantino. When I couldn’t sell any (they were kind of crap) I moved onto books, really just to see if I could pull it off. I finished my first novel at age 21, then sent it out to agents and publishers half heartedly. I couldn’t admit it needed a lot of work so of course they all rejected it. Still I kept on writing because darn it I just couldn’t help myself. Still can’t. Finally after about seven, eight years of editing and attending pitch sessions and sending out query letters, I got an agent. About a year after that I got a book deal. A writing career is like running a marathon up Mt. Everest: treacherous, painful, rocky, but worth it when you reach the top.

What is the hardest part of writing books?
Descriptions. I learned the basics of writing during my screenplay years, so dialogue and pacing are like second nature to me now, (helps that I’m a wise ass too). Descriptions, not so much. I either put in too much or too little. I hate writing them because I know I’ll have to go back a trillion times in the editing process to fix them until they’re readable. Show not tell is the bane of my bloody existence. I’ve written seven books, and I still have a problem with it.

What does your family think of your career?
They are over the flipping moon. I like to joke my father wanted me to be an FBI agent and my mother wanted me to be a writer so I split the difference, writing about FBI agents. There’s no question I’ve been blessed with wonderful family and friends. Not a one ever told me I couldn’t do this, and sometimes they were even the ones who convinced me to carry on. And now my book is out, they’re telling everyone. I have cousins I never knew writing to congratulate me and my mom keeps giving books to random people like the mailman or checker at her grocery store. There is no way in hell I’d be being interviewed by you now if not for all of them.

How would you describe your writing style?
The word that keeps popping up in reviews is “fun,” so I’ll go with that. I wanted to write something with a fast pace, witty dialogue, but scary at the same time. Apparently I succeeded. I read books to escape from the mundane, to be entertained, and I think most people are the same. I just hope I delivered.

Where are fans most likely to find you hanging out?
I’m a total homebody. I have to force myself to leave the house most days. Drives my friends crazy. When I do venture out into the world I go mostly to bookstores and libraries. I love hunting down specific books, going to as many stores as I have to to locate it. I also write a lot at libraries. In my acknowledgments section I thanked all the places I wrote Mind Over Monsters at, so if you really want to stalk me just read that.

Tell us about your latest release.
It’s called Mind Over Monsters. It’s about a telekinetic former schoolteacher who has to join a secret branch of the FBI called the F.R.E.A.K.S. who fight monsters, this go around it’s zombies and a necromancer. Her team mates consist of a teenage teleporter, pyrokinetic, medium, psychometric, randy vampire, and shy werewolf. I swear it’s way better than I’m making it sound. There’s flirting, ghouls, machetes, and even cake. What more can you ask for in a book?

What are your favorite TV shows?              
I am addicted to TV. I can’t stand the quiet, so it’s always on. I love Game of Thrones, (though the first three books are better), Friday Night Lights, Battlestar Galactica, Firefly, Arrested Development, The Wire, Veronica Mars, Parks and Recreation, Buffy, and my guilty pleasure is The Real Housewives of Anywhere.

If you could give any advice to aspiring writers, what would it be?
Never. Give. Up. Getting to this point took me ten years, and I still have a long way to go. I’ve lost count of how many rejection letters I’ve received in that time, and they still keep coming. But I just didn’t give up. Remember The Help was rejected sixty times. Harry Potter fifteen. Just write, read, and write some more. If you want it bad enough and are willing to work for it, it will happen. I am proof of that.

Enter to win a Print copy of Mind Over Monsters. 5 print copies will be given away tour wide.  Comment on this post for a BONUS Entry.  Sorry, US Shipping only.  Ends Oct 31.


About Jennifer Harlow: Jennifer Harlow earned a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Virginia. She has been a bookseller, radio DJ, lab assistant, and government investigator. She lives in Northern Virginia and is hard at work on her next book.

Jennifer Harlow spent her restless childhood fighting with her three brothers and scaring the heck out of herself with horror movies and books. She grew up to earn a degree at the University of Virginia which she put to use as a radio DJ, crisis hotline volunteer, bookseller, lab assistant, wedding coordinator, and government investigator. Currently she calls Northern Virginia home but that restless itch is ever present. In her free time she continues to scare the beejepers out of herself watching scary movies and opening her credit card bills.

Jennifer is a member of Mystery Writers of America, Horror Writers Association, and Sisters in Crime.

Visit Jennifer at



October 22nd
Guest Post, Review & Giveaway
Romancing the Darkside

October 22 Book Feature

October 23 Review and Excerpt The Wormhole

Oct 24 Live Radio Interview
7pm EST
BLogTalk Radio BK Walker

Authors - Book Tours can give your book additional exposure and help you reach new readers.  There are several different plans from which to choose.  There are options available that are ideal for modest budgets.  To find out more, click the image.

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Disclaimer: This disclosure is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255, Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.   In some cases, I receive free books in return for a review. My reviews always express my own personal opinion. I am not obligated to write a glowing or even favorable review.  I have not received any monetary compensation in return for my honest review. Promotional banners and information was provided through Bewitching Book Tours. I am an authorized Tour Host. 



Scorpio1974 said...

Great interview and thanks for the chance to enter the giveaway also!!! =) I hope I get a chance to read the book, it sound really good.

Valerie Long (Scorpio1974 on GFC)
Jewelry Creations by V.S. Long -

loves to dive said...

This sounds like a fun book, I loved the excerpt.
Good luck on the tour.
lvs2dv at gmail dot com