Christmas Reads

Hey, All,

Happy Holidays! I hope the season finds you at peace. I want to focus today on some holidays reads, to help you set the mood, escape from holiday realities, or further escalate your partying through the season!

Of course, SANTA IS A VAMPIRE hit the shelves! I am enjoying the reactions to it. They are very mixed, but I anticipated as much because this is a very dark tale, mingled with a juvenile sense of humor. I love my book, but its “taste” is not for everyone. Which makes me giggle, because Santa and Simon like to stir it up – good, bad, or somewhere between. If you want some horror and humor in your holiday, please read! If you’re easily offended, you may want to skip this one. To get a taste for it, please read an interview I did with Gareth Johnson at MeansHappy.com!

But, either way, please check out my fellow NineStar Press authors who also came out with some holiday fun. NineStar does amazing things, and there are a lot of impressive titles to add to your holiday reading enjoyment. Please read them here: NineStar Press Holiday Reads!  I’d like to highlight a couple, if you’ll indulge me. Kevin Klehr has a New Year’s story coming Dec. 10th: Midnight Angel.  Felicia Doherty Zawadzki comes at you with Sugar Cookies and Mistletoe! Riina Y.T. adds Paradise Lodge for us. And . . . there are a lot more in the link to NineStar seasonal books.

Season’s Greetings! Watch out for Santa and Simon. If you see them, your holidays will take a serious turn for the worse.

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Now Available!

Just a quick note: yeah – Santa is a Vampire hit the shelves, so to speak on Monday. I am super excited to share this twisted tale with you for the holidays.

Warning: it’s not at all like my usual stuff. This has horror – raw and untamed and not okay. And it’s mixed with juvenile and silly humor. A weird combo, but one I enjoy. So when you read it, here’s the number one rule: do NOT take anything seriously here. Nothing!

And join me on Friday, Nov. 30th at 6:30 last City Lit Books in Chicago (2523 N. Kedzie Ave.) for a reading and signing!

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Book Signing and Reading!

In case you missed the announcement!

Please join me on Nov. 30th at 6:30 for a reading and signing celebration! Free and open to the public at City Lit Books in Chicago, 2523 N. Kedzie Blvd.:

Simon the Elf wants to tell you the true story behind Jolly Ole St. Nick. Yeah, he’s a vampire. But that alleged gift giver and lover of children hides more than that fact from you. And what about Mrs. Claus and Rudolph? Venture into a world of enslaved elves, enchanted animals, and death wrought by Santa himself. With his sharp wit, Simon will lead you into the darkest realms of Christmas in Santa is a Vampire by Simon the Elf, with Damian Serbu. Warning: Simon cusses a lot. But you would, too, if Santa held you captive.

https://www.citylitbooks.com/event/author-event-santa-vampire-damian-serbu

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Simon the Elf Makes My Head Explode!!!

Hey, Folks,

Here come the holidays, and with them the introduction of Simon the Elf!!  And he is not fucking around with his launch onto the scene. So much so, that I am breaking a rule here. I usually want each blog entry to focus on one thing, but Santa is making Simon do so much, I have multiple announcements for you all in one post.

First, mark your calendars! City Lit Books in Chicago will once again host my release party! Join us to meet Simon the Elf, and hear an excerpt from his tell all story about Santa: Santa is a Vampire! The details: Friday, November 30th at 6:30 p.m. at City Lit Books, 2523 N. Kenzie Blvd. Free and open to the public!

Second, and related but I like to make it a special announcement, here is the cover art reveal! I know I gush every time, but Natasha Snow does such an outstanding job:

Third, Simon teased his story about Santa in a novella, Santa’s Kinky Elf, Simon. Here come some reviews, for your enjoyment:

From Amos Lassen, who tells you “to think twice before you sit on Santa’s lap this year.”

From E.M. Hamill: “Simon’s sarcastic voice is funny and acerbic.”

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SANTA’S KINKY ELF, SIMON

Released today!!!  Come learn about Simon the Elf, and get a teaser about what he knows about Santa!!

Buy Here Now!

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Santa and Simon Book Blurbs!

We’re revving up and getting close to Simon the Elf’s introduction as an author, where he teaches us the true story about Santa! Today, I want to release the official blurbs for his two books!!!

Coming November 5th: Santa has big plans to release a story about himself right before Christmas, revealing his true nature as a vampire. He decides the best advanced publicity comes from reality stories and enlists Simon the Elf, a captive former human, to hit Chicago for the holidays and strike up a romance. Santa wants Simon to document the whole thing, so they can give people a taste for life under Santa’s enslavement before the main story hits. Forced to the Second City against his will, Simon at first resists Santa’s orders, knowing a romance would be short lived at best, and at worst bring some innocent victim into Santa’s evil orbit. But Simon failed to reckon with the charm and wit of Jonah, a hot guy he meets his first night on the town. Falling hard, Simon takes up with his new love despite knowing the awful choice ahead of him. Santa’s Kinky Elf, Simon, tells you this tragic love story in the elf’s own words.

Coming November 26th: Simon the Elf wants to tell you the true story behind Jolly Ole St. Nick. Yeah, he’s a vampire. But that alleged gift giver and lover of children hides more than that fact from you. And what about Mrs. Claus and Rudolph? Venture into a world of enslaved elves, enchanted animals, and death wrought by Santa himself. With his sharp wit, Simon will lead you into the darkest realms of Christmas in Santa is a Vampire by Simon the Elf, with Damian Serbu. Warning: Simon cusses a lot. But you would, too, if Santa held you captive.

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October’s Arrival!

I am busy finishing up the preparations for my upcoming novella and novel release!  Santa’s Kiny Elf, Simon, a novella about Simon the Elf and a romantic fling, and Santa Is a Vampire, in which Simon the Elf explains the true story about Santa, will be released by NineStar Press on time for the holidays! A little humor and horror all mixed together with some history and the stunningly horrific true story about Santa. Each are in copyediting and moving toward proofreading.  With those tasks in hand, as well as advanced preparation for publicity and such, October will keep me busy.

But not too busy to enjoy one of this horror writer’s favorite times of year! Why is it so fabulous?! Well, Halloween, of course, helps out, plus the arrival of fall here in the Midwest. So here’s a list of why October is so fabulous for a writer of gay spooky things!

Trick or Treating: from memories of my childhood fun to handing out candy today!

Pumpkin Coffee! (Note: I don’t start drinking it until now and find it sacrilegious that some people drink it year round.)

Decorating my house! I especially love my Halloween tree with its scary ornaments.

The fall trees turning colors.

As the days grow shorter, weird thought to write about pop more frequently into my head.

Okay, I just thought of twenty other things to add, but I seriously have to get more work done and soon. Happy October everyone!!

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SIMON THE ELF and Editing

Hi, All,

To remind everyone, in November and December this year I have a novella and novel coming your way, scheduled specifically to help you usher in the Holiday Season! First comes Santa’s Kinky Elf, Simon, a brief taste for Simon and his story in the context of an almost love affair. Then comes the whole tale, about Santa, Mrs. Claus, and even Rudolph, in Santa Is a Vampire.

Simon the Elf narrates both of them for you, and he has a profound and terrifying story to tell you about Santa Claus. That lovable, children’s story character really exists, and hides a horrific secret: he is a vampire of the worst sort. From his enslaved position at the North Pole, Simon delivers a tell-all narrative guaranteed to spoil your holidays.

A departure in terms of content and style from anything I previously released, this combination satire/horror story will delight some people, offend people, and leave my friends and family thinking that I’ve gone mental. I can’t wait to get it out to all of you!!!

NineStar Press and I are in the midst of editing away as I type. I still believe firmly in editing, in the traditional process of writing and then getting others involved in the endeavor to help you refine your work, check for mistakes, and make it even better. Simon is helping out, too, with Santa watching over his shoulder.

Happy Holidays.  Damian

 

Damian

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On Gratitude

At book signings and when I chat with people about my writing, they often ask what inspires my ideas or generates my stories. I wish I had a simple answer for them, but a complex set of circumstances flow into every novel, every character, and every story I have ever told or will tell. One consistent notion weaves its way through all of them, though, so I wanted to write a bit about it today. No matter the context, whether in writing about horror, a relationship, humor, or just mundane life, all of my scenes and creations contain some element of emotion, some fundamental human feeling that begins in me and flows into my fiction.

I thought of this fact amid a week of feeling a great deal of gratitude. So, first – the context. The gratitude sprung stronger than usual this week because of a variety of circumstances. Last week, Paul and I spent time with dear friends, hanging at their house on a lake – I was so grateful for the love, companionship, laughter, and friendship. I also had gratitude for Paul as my husband as we celebrated his birthday. Then I scheduled a trip over the holidays to visit my family in Colorado, and felt an intense sense of gratitude for the love we share with one another and what that time together will mean. Getting back to work after the long summer, I felt gratitude for my colleagues, and reconnecting with them.

And the gratitude almost overwhelmed me in the interaction I had with someone because of a professional blunder that I made. It was my mistake, made inadvertantly, but an embarrassing one that could have become unethical because it potentially violated a signed contract. I immediately reached out to the person who would oversee the consequences, because the contract for the work was with that person. I laid out what happened, and why. I expressed my humiliation at having made the error, and gave a sincere apology. And that person simply forgave me and offered a more than kind and generous solution, and pacified everything. I was literally in tears when I read the response. If only humans could treat each other as I was treated in that moment.

And all this gratitude will work its way into my writing. I don’t know when. Or how. But the emotion was so intense and strong this week, it will reappear for me. It’s something I love about writing. And I hope in some way I convey that to readers, and through my novels they feel it, too.

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Summer Thoughts: Stephen King’s IT and Family

Hi, Everyone,

Sorry for the longer delay than usual in posting on my blog. This summer was busy! And, frankly, sometimes I suffer from wondering what exactly I should write, because I don’t want to drone on about ideas that no one cares about but me. A couple thoughts have been rumbling around in my mind, though, so I offer the following summer thoughts for your enjoyment!

I went old school in my most recent reading endeavor, with Stephen King’s It. Full confession, which seems painfully obvious even if unsaid: I was inspired to read it by the movie last fall, which was really, really good. And further confession: my sick, twisted, horror mind was totally attracted to Pennywise in the movie. (Bill Skarsgard being underneath that make up doesn’t hurt the cause here, either.) I consider myself a casual Stephen King fan. I have not read everything he ever wrote; I find it enjoyable and creepy, but not so engrossing that I have to read him all the time; and sometimes his stuff drags a little, or offends a little, which I think is the point, but still . . . . Anyway, I am reading It, which is absolutely enormous, in case you didn’t know – and what strikes me more than anything is the way King uses horror to tell a story about humanity. Too many people still stereotype the horror genre as nothing but a quick scare and things to spook you. I think King, in particular, gets that label. But It provides the perfect example for why those stereotypes should be thrown in the trash. Underneath the horror that haunts Derry, we see humans coming together, forging a bond, struggling to survive, growing up/coming of age, and deeply caring for one another. That message drives the story, not the horror. It’s the emotion, the nurturing of each other that compels the reader to keep going through the over 1,100 pages. Bravo, Stephen King. Finally, I am also enjoying a throw back to the mid-1980s.

My other summer thought has to do with family, since I spent a lot of time with them this summer. I know I have mentioned this before, and I hope my books in some way get at it, too, but life is about enjoying the journey and spending time with loved ones. Each and every visit meant so much to me, and I always tried to just sit with people and embrace their company. My dad passed away last December, so perhaps I felt more bonded and nostalgic this summer about family than usual. Sitting with loved ones and remembering him has been much needed therapy for us all. Part of the reason my blog suffered more than usual was because of this family time all summer long. I wouldn’t change that for the world.

Until next time, which I promise will come sooner, love you all and thanks for reading.

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