cover, Castle Wrath by Karin Kallmaker

Castle Wrath – Not Your Mother’s Jane Austen – Now Available

Book News, Castle Wrath, Novellas 0 Comments Admin

Burning curiosity. Wild imagination. Put them together and the breathless discoveries of an ingenue who reads far too many lurid novels come to life. Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen is all that and more. The dizzy chapters of young Catherine’s exploration of the Abbey are glorious fun to read. Cabinets that lure her with their tantalizing closed doors. The secrets! The treasures! Things that go bump in the night!

illustration from 1833 edition of Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen

She had not been used to feel alarm from wind, but now every blast seemed fraught with awful intelligence… What could it contain? To whom could it relate? By what means could it have been so long concealed? And how singularly strange that it should fall to her lot to discover it! – Northanger Abbey, Jane Austen

As most readers know, Northanger Abbey isn’t the first time Jane Austen inspired me to pen a very lesbian version of her work. A year prior I wrote Just Like That (2005), setting Pride and Prejudice in California’s vineyards. It’s not as if I’m alone in thinking Austen is great for lesbian adaptations. Autostraddle’s brilliantly excellent mash up of pulp novels and Jane Austen is one of the things that makes life worth living.

classic pulp novel art with Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen as book

Castle Wrath was written for an erotica anthology (Stake through the Heart, Bella Books 2006). After deciding that a story about an ingenue who sees horror around every corner was where I wanted to go, well, I had to get a bit naughty with it.

Castle Wrath is about half the length of a novel at 31,000 words. Plus there’s smutty good fun when breathless Brittany Brannigan discovers (gasp!) a hotbed of lesbian porn production (shocking!) and other things that go bump (and bump!) in the night. And then there’s the decidedly attractive and very annoying caretaker’s daughter always being right about, well, everything.

Buy Linkapalooza

cover, Castle Wrath by Karin Kallmaker

Available for the first time in digital editions at:

Enjoy, and please leave an honest review for other readers. If you have any issues with formatting please let us know via contentsprite(-at-)

Pride Flag in the wind

Reblog: Laurie R. King “Moving Forward”

LIFE + STYLE, Sisters of the Pen 3 Comments Admin

Pride Flag in the wind

Words have been hard to find, let alone the focus to express them coherently. Part of me resists the idea that a man so devoid of common decency or simple shame could set any kind of agenda for me. I am grateful to Laurie R. King for expressing beautifully how I am feeling today about moving forward. Please go read.

From Laurie’s blog:

I don’t intend to post my outrage—that way lies madness—but I will talk about the ground I stand on.  – Laurie R. King

READ THE ORIGINAL in its full glory, especially the last paragraph.

A publishing error limited the distribution of this post. First published 1/20/2017, resubmitting 1/21/2017.
cover, party favors lesbian romance by Jaime Clevenger

Lesbian Storytelling in the New Dark Times – Laurel Bookstore Feb 19

Events and Appearances, Sisters of the Pen 0 Comments Admin

cover, party favors by Jaime Clevenger

Tap open your calendar or get a Sharpie and write it on your paper calendar or on your hand or your gf’s body part (with consent): Laurel Bookstore, Oakland, 2/19, 4 pm, lesbian event. Really all you need to know right there.

Laurel Bookstore is hosting an extravaganza of lesbian writers: “Lesbian Authors Talk About Storytelling – Why We Do What We Do.” Don’t miss out – several are infrequent visitors to the Bay Area. We’re going to talk about why we write the stories we write and how we feel our lesbian voices telling those stories matter. Especially now in what is going to be the suckiest political environment for queer people since the early 90s.

The Peripatetic Lesbian Panoply Participating*

  • KG MacGregor – KG is coming all the way from North Carolina. If you haven’t had the pleasure of the dry wit and southern drawl, your world is incomplete. KG’s latest is Trial by Fury. She’s also the president of the Lambda Literary Foundation and has a wide perspective on the power of our queer storytelling.
  • Jaime Clevenger – This is a welcome back event, because Jaime left us *sob* for Colorado several years ago. Her brand effing new Party Favors will be available (at least that’s the plan). I’ve heard that there’s a bit of a naughty edge to the book. The cover (above) hints at it, I think. Let’s hope that’s true because Jaime does naughty really well. And only Jaime would get a Batman costume into the mix.
  • Pol Robinson – Another Laurel virgin, this one coming all the way from the Seattle area. I called her a virgin because it’ll make her blush and why not? So fun. Pol has a new story in the faboo Bella anthology Happy Ever After.
  • Laina Villeneuve – making the trip again from Southern California, this will be her second time appearing at Laurel. Her latest is Return to Paradise. She finds time to make her voice heard with toddlers around, so she must think it’s kind of important.
  • Heather Rose Jones – Heather’s been at Laurel before to talk about her Alpennia fantasy series which, if you’re not reading it, you’re missing out on smart women controlling their own destiny. The latest addition to this not-quite-our-world-because-magic series is Mother of Souls.
  • Some woman named Kallmaker. She just shows up. Nothing we can do about it.

So yeah, in the political world we’re all pretty depressed and demoralized, and we deal with that in different ways. But at the same time we can plant flowers and at least there will also be flowers in our day-to-day world.

Laurel Bookstore is planting flowers LIKE CRAZY. So help us celebrate resistance, stave off the blues and raise our voices. The store isn’t usually open on Sundays so this is a Lesbians-are-Special event.

To be sure that a book you want to buy is there, call ahead and ask the store to set it aside for you. Totally easy to do, and something the store is happy to do for you. Because they’re like a store with real people who give actual real customer service and want you to be happy and will smile at you and say thank you and mean it. You can also order through the web site and have the book held at the store for pick up on the event date. Here’s a link to the store’s event write up which might have deets that I’ve missed.

Laurel Book Store
1423 Broadway (about 5 steps from 12th Street Bart/Ogawa Plaza exit)
Oakland, CA 94612

* Presented in order of rarity. And I mean rarity of appearances in the Bay Area and at Laurel. They are all rare commodities as fabulous women and writers.

Getting Published – Panel in Castro Valley on Saturday

Events and Appearances, Readers and Libraries 0 Comments Admin

program flyer for CV library program getting published
This is an event for new(ish) writers who are generally located in the East Bay. (I dislike reading about a cool sounding event and only finding out at the end that it’s thousands of miles away.) So Oakland, Hayward, San Leandro, Castro Valley, Pleasanton, Dublin, Fremont, Union City and so on and on. You can come from farther away if you’re up for it! The CV Library is not even two blocks from CV Bart.

Start your weekend out with a positive step toward making your publishing dreams happen. This program is FREE. Like just about everything else at the library. #librariesROCK

Please join me this weekend for an open panel of Read More

Cover, Indomitable the Barbara Grier Story by Joanne Passet

Indomitable Should Be in Your Public Library

Readers and Libraries, Sisters of the Pen 4 Comments Admin

Cover, Indomitable the Barbara Grier Story by Joanne Passet
“Glorious and inglorious complexity.” The phrase captures Barbara Grier to perfection, and is used by Katherine V. Forrest on the dust jacket of Indomitable, this new, richly detailed biography of the woman who “changed, for the better, every lesbian life…” as Lee Lynch adds. That means your life, even if you don’t recognize the name.

I’m not exhorting you to read Indomitable (you should). There’s something more important that you can do from your seat.

Biographies of queer people are rare enough, and biographies of lesbian womenRead More

graffiti mama playing guitar

Songlist – Getting My Resolutions On

Chocolate and Inspirations, LIFE + STYLE 8 Comments Admin

graffiti mama playing guitar

As I said at the Bella Blog, my 2017 resolution is to put out into the world what I want to see more of. Clearly, we are in a time where good, truth, kindness and courage must rise ten times brighter because greed, lies, bullying and selfishness are willing to go so very low to score their temporary victories.

My 2016 was personally full of beauty and Read More

In Which I Fan Girl and Oh Yeah, There’s a Literary Cruise

Events and Appearances, Warming Trend Admin

Hi. My name is Karin and I am a goofy doofus fan girl. I’m fairly practiced and blase about meeting readers and bumping shoulders with other writers. But I’ve got an event coming up where all my Grownup Skills will be deeply challenged by my Fan Girl Doofus History.

Books. Hundreds and hundreds of lesbians. Writers, authors. Singers, songwriters. Smart Women. Sheroes. All on an Olivia Cruise to Alaska.

Poof! Magic is going to happen when all of those things are in the same place next June. But what do I Fan Girl first? So many choicesRead More

Coffee, Meetups and a Big Tease

Book News, Readers and Libraries Admin

Anyone following my Facebook feed knows I’m in Canada seeing the eye-popping sights. Yesterday I met up with two passionate lesfic fans, Tara and Patti. (Did we take a picture, no we did not. Bad Karin, bad bad! Instead, you get a picture of Lake Louise.)

As we chatted I admitted that I had, that morning, written the opening paragraphs of the next novel. In their honor I’m going to go ahead Read More