Hello, and beware. Be very beware.
The Ghost of CreepCat has entered the world.
In other words, my new Sylvan Woods short story has been published and is available for purchase—starting today!
Ghost of CreepCat takes place in the Casey Grimes universe and includes a familiar character—as well as a brand new one. It features a solvable mystery (some would say two) and in terms of content, it’s on par with the full-length Casey books, with some scariness and mild gore. No cuts no guts no glory.
CreepCat works great as an introduction to monster control, Trickery School, Bog Creeps, Scythe-Staffs, and all that Sylvan stuff. In terms of themes, the central thread in this one has got to be Courage. And Tenacity. And vivid Imagination that makes a person better suited to the real world than all the down-with-it, cool people around her.
Ghost is also unique in that it’s the first story written, produced and directed solely by me, AJ Vanderhorst. That’s right, it’s my first foray into self-publishing—and I’ve gotta say, I loved it. I designed the cover (thanks for all the great feedback on the FB page), created the interior layout, and formatted the ebooks. The full artistic control felt great.
Honest industry talk: My satisfaction with my small press has been going downhill for a while now, and more self-pub is probably in the cards for me moving forward. I woke up one morning (actually, it took several months) and said, “Hey, I can do everything my publisher is doing AND I CAN DO IT BETTER.” More on that later…
In other news, Trickery School got a wonderful review from kidlit industry mainstay, Always in the Middle:
"I was drawn into the tension-packed plot from the beginning... The story likens to the danger and appeal of the Harry Potter series but with a different vibe."
And The Mostly Invisible Boy scored another international medal, silver in the Wishing Shelf Book Awards. TMIB has been sneakily racking up a lot of great reviews and hardware.
Some other things are cooking, but I’ll fill you in next time. Be sure to let me know what you think of The Ghost of CreepCat!