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VOLUME 1(1), SPRING 2014 The Newsletter of Elm Books

Edited by Karen Wolf and Leila Monaghan http://elm-books.com


Elm Books is now a year and a half old. We have four titles currently in print, are distributing two more by Kirk Van Dyke and have six incredible new projects in the pipeline. We now have national distribution in the United States through the far reaching Ingram's Distribution Network, and have also sold books in Canada, the United Kingdom, Europe and Australia. Jess Faraday, M.M. Ardagna and I have been delighted to bring you the best in new short mysteries and romances and we are also adding new people to our roster. Please welcome A.S. Knight, who is our new web guru and publishing assistant; Karen Wolf is the editor of an exciting new genre, GritLit; and we look forward to welcoming Pam Fradkin, an expert in phone marketing and sales.

Please let us know how we can help you to get your work out to the world. Feel free to distribute this newsletter including our current calls for work to all who you think would be intersted. Below is information about all our new and upcoming books, the great reviews we have been receiving, information about the new genres Elm Books is expanding into, and our current calls for stories.

Before I go, let me also say congratulations to Lily Callahan for being a finalist in the Aspen Gold 2013 novella competition for her story, "Sprig of Holly." Please let me know if there are competions that you think our books or stories would be eligible for.

Enjoy your summer! We have certainly earned it this year.

Leila Monaghan




Edited by Jess Faraday

Contributions by Helen Angove, Leonhard August, Emily Baird, H. Tucker Cobey, Charlie Cochrane, Lynn Finger, Mark Hague, Gay Toltl Kinman, and Angelia Sparrow

When is a ghost not a ghost? Why would a vampire hire a vampire hunter to solve the murder of a fellow bloodsucker? If a werewolf is attacked in wolf form, is it assault or animal abuse? Is it murder if the victim is already dead?

Nine talented authors tackle these pressing questions and more, in Undeath and the Detective, the first collection of supernatural mysteries from Elm Books. Between these covers, you will encounter zombies, extraterrestrials, vampires, shape-shifters, and more than a few ghosts. Travel from nineteenth century England to the present day to the far reaches of time and space, on a package tour led by your favorite Elm Books authors, several talented newcomers, and a few surprise names, which, if you don't already know them, you should!



Edited by M.M. Ardagna and Jess Faraday

Contributions by Julianna Comyn, Cris de Borja, Margart Erlandson, Yvette Franklin, Jessamin Gardiner, and Sam C. Leonhard

Six gorgeous tales of magical, fantastical love. Here we have kidnapped fae, ancient gardens, selkies, werewolves and much much more. The best of traditional fantasy and sexy passionate modern romances. The Reward of It All tells of a captive in the world of the fae captured to fight against beasts of yore. The Garden is a reweaving of a story from the very beginning of time from a completely new point of view. A hard scrabble life in a tiny village by the ocean makes it so that Seven Tears Are Not Enough, especially when there is a gorgeous selkie involved. In our two stories set in modern times, Fairy Circle Drive is about finding magic in the most ordinary of places, while the heroine of Chimera's Tail sets out to find the powerful love that will save her from madness and death. Finally, in Thrice Always, a life long outsider finds the answers to her dreams and much more.



Edited by Jess Faraday

A mystery collection featuring women protagonists. And a cup of tea somewhere in the story.

Expected late Summer 2014


By Lori Howe

A unique blend of poetry, history and tour guide on the ghost towns of Wyoming.

Expected Fall 2014


Edited by M.M. Ardagna and Lily Callahan

A re-release of our funny charming Christmas collection complete with gorgeous new cover and great new holiday tales.


Edited by Lee Mullins and Jess Faraday

Our yet to be named collection will feature stories about diverse children in a wide ranging series of settings. The collection is a key part of the new Gen-E (for Generation Excellent) division at Elm Books which focuses on middle school and young adult fiction featuring diverse characters. We consider this our part of the fight to diversify children's literature in general, getting books with characters of color into the hands of all children who need them.

Expected Fall 2014


Edited by Karen Wolf

Another yet to be named collection, this time short stories about slices of life, with all the gritty details included.

Expected Winter 2014


Death on a Cold Night edited by Jess Faraday and Figures on a Beach by Kirk Van Dyke were both reviewed by Open Window Review on April 16, 2013.

Death on a Cold Night

It’s a comforting evening to me when I can curl up in my chair with hot chocolate in one hand and a new book in the other. When I looked up from the fourth short story in Elm Books’ recent publication of Death on a Cold Night, “A Theft of Teapots,” I realized that two hours had slipped by and my own tea was untouched. Jess Faraday has put together a fascinating collection of well-written short stories, and though I’m not usually a fan of mysteries, I was smitten. (Jason Deiss, Open Window Review)


Figures on a Beach

If you have ever simultaneously longed for and feared the weightless transience of living on the road, taking work where you can find it and living unencumbered by rent and routine, you will be, as I was, drawn immediately into the solitary life of John Jones, the complex protagonist....[who escaped] the Wyoming winter in his 1970 VW bus and headed for the coast of Texas with $250 in his wallet....

Figures on a Beach is not a pretty novel, not tied up cleanly with one thread and folded in the end; it is, instead, a real, substantial, thoughtful, and intelligent novel, and one that bares the intersection of love and longing, health and illness, and the desire to belong to something that the heart cannot quite identify. (Lori Howe, Open Window Review)


Another complimentary and thorough review of Death on a Cold Night comes from the Novel Approach who gave it 4 Stars and particularly cited Emily Baird's story.

Each of the stories in this book is well worth the time to read, but as is the case with most anthologies, there was a standout story in this collection for me, Emily Baird’s Death Benefits. I loved the suspense of the story, as well as the paranormal angle, which was all carried out so well in the tension of the narrative. Not to mention the fact that SK was a sweet and wonderful hero. (Lisa Horan, Novel Approach).


Death and the Detective was reviewed by King’s River Life Magazine.

With eleven mystery authors given the parameters to write a short story about a detective and a death, it’s not surprising that editor Jess Faraday received such a diverse collection of original, and all very well written, tales of death and deception. Sometimes the narrators are heroes and sometimes they are the deceivers, but they always manage to entrap the reader into their stories of justice, redemption, and survival. Broken into categories of Doublecross, Revenge, Something to Prove, They Needed Killin’, and Second Chances, readers are treated to sometimes funny, sometimes tragic, but always compelling tales of death and morality...(Cynthia Chow, King's River Life Magazine).

http://kingsriverlife.blog spot.com/2013/11/death-and-detective-eleven-mystery.html

Know of any outlets for reviews? We are always happy to send out electronic or paperback review copies. Just let us know at Leila.ElmBooks@gmail.com


One of the key ways we have to get the word out about our books has been book signings. It is with great regret that we say goodbye to Book 'Em Bookstore in South Pasadena. Its owner, Jean Utley has retired after many years of service to the Southern California literary community. Thank you for all the great work you have done. Our last event there was a very successful launch party for Undeath and the Detective on November 10, 2013. We had several UD&D authors in attendance and sold out of all of the copies we had in stock.

As we now are nationally distributed through Ingram's Book Distributors, signings are easier than ever before. Please let us know if you would like to do a signing at a local bookstore, library or book fair. We will be happy to help you arrange the details.


GritLit is the brand new term for unflatteringly accurate descriptions of the lives most people never hear about written in clear poetic prose. So far we have two GritLit authors at Elm -- Kirk VanDyke, whose beautiful leisurely prose captures the angst of living on the edge, and Christopher Piper, whose dark humor and lyrical style have been called both powerful and irreverent.

Gen-E Books will devote itself to bringing diverse children's literature to the world, particularly the much neglected middle grade novel. Every child deserves books that reflect their community. Gen-E is looking for the best, most exciting new books that will both reflect the experiences of children in neglected communities including urban areas and impoverished rural areas and be great reads for any child.

Finally, we are delighted to introduce our Poetic Tour Guides, starting with the beautiful poetry and pictures of Wyoming's eery and picturesque ghost towns in High Lonesome by Lori Howe.


Death and a Nice Cup of Tea

Don’t be fooled by the cozy-sounding title – anything goes for this new anthology from Elm Books – well, almost anything.

What we’re looking for is female protagonists. Professional, amateur or accidental sleuths. If your MC identifies as female, we’d like to meet her. Your protagonist doesn’t have to be the sleuth – she could be the perp, for exam-ple – but she does have to be the main character. Also – mysteries only, please. You know—a story about a crime and its solution. We’re happy to consider any setting: historical, contemporary, futuristic, alternate-universe, supernatural – the only limit is your imagination.

And just one more thing: somehow, tea has to figure into it. Why? Just because =)

As always, please no graphic depictions of violence or sex. These things can figure into the plot, but we won’t print long, drawn-out descriptions of sex, cruelty or gore.

We’re also eager to publish stories by and about people from traditionally underrepresented groups.

Deadline: June 1 , 2014 (Drop us a line asap if you want to submit but will have trouble meeting this deadline)

Word Count: 5,000-10,000 words

Publication Date: Summer, 2014

Payment: Share of royalties

Full Manuscript: Send to Jess Faraday at Jess.Elmbooks@gmail.com

Diverse Middle Grade Collection

Edited by Lee Mullins and Jess Faraday

We are seeking stories about children of color that will grab readers' attentions, i.e., mysteries, adventures, humor, and suspense, set in the present, near past or near future that reflect the realities and the hopes of life in diverse communities including African American, Latino, Native American, Asian, urban, rural and international.

Stories should be aimed at a middle grade audience (2nd-6th grades) and written in clear, straight forward prose. Black and white line illustrations welcome, no color illustrations. No romantic situations, graphic violence, explicit drug use or slavery.

Deadline: August 1 , 2014

Word Count: 1,000-5,000 words

Publication Date: Fall, 2014

Payment: Share of royalties

Submit queries: Leila.ElmBooks@gmail.com

GritLit Tales

We’re excited to announce our first submission call for our newest genre – Grit Lit. We are eager to publish stories by new writers that have real stories to tell. We are looking for short stories (5,000 to 10,000 words) with real characters and true-to-life stories. Whether your story is White Trash America-na, fictionalized autobiography, or other stories of real-life mayhem and debauchery, we are interested in reading them!While violence is a part of life, please no excessive violence (think Fight Club, not Texas Chainsaw Massacre).

Deadline: August 1, 2014
Word Count: 5,000-10,000 words

Publication Date: Winter 2014

Payment: Share of Royalties

Full Ms: Send to Karen Wolf Karen.ElmBooks@gmail.com


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