Over 300 Readers (and counting) Love Im Zwiefel für das Monster


Für Freunde skurriler Geschichten à la Christopher Moore genau das richtige… mit einer Prise Magie, “übernatürlichem Scheiß” und Anwaltsleben gepaart.

Die Leser lieben Im Zwiefel für das Monster! Über 300 (Tendenz zählende) Zuhörer und Leser haben diese Geschichte bereits hoch gelobt!

Just the right thing for fans of bizarre stories à la Christopher Moore… paired with a pinch of magic, “supernatural shit” and legal life.

Readers are loving Im Zwiefel für das Monster! Over 300 (and counting) listeners and readers have already shared their high praise for this story!

ANDREWELTEN LIVE – Countdown to Halloween

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  days

  hours  minutes  seconds

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LitLounge.tv Live Stream Event

20:30 Uhr | Watch the Online Event Live HERE; LitLounge.tv

Im Zweifel für das Monster | Echo

Royce Buckingham, Thomas Olde Heuvelt

Rachsüchtige Berggeister und kriminelle Monster – bei diesen Romanen schalten Sie beim lesen besser das Licht ein!

Moderation: Björn Springorum

Die Fantasy-Verlage der Penguin Random House Verlagsgruppe bringen bekannte Autor*innen im Livestream zu euch nach Hause – und ihr könnt live eure Fragen stellen.

Rachsüchtige Berggeister und kriminelle Monster – bei diesen Romanen schalten Sie beim Lesen besser das Licht ein! 

Halloween steht vor der Tür, die Zeit der Hexen, Geister und Ungeheuer. Mit diesen Gestalten kennt sich der niederländische Horrorautor Thomas Olde Heuvelt bestens aus. Für sein Debüt »Hex« wurde er von Stephen King geadelt, in seinem neuen Buch »Echo« entführt er uns in die Schweizer Alpen, wo ein uralter Berggeist zum Leben erwacht.

Der amerikanische Bestsellerautor Royce Buckingham dagegen nähert sich den Ungeheuern in seinem gerade jüngsten Roman »Im Zweifel für das Monster« von der humorvollen Seite. Erlebt die beiden Schriftsteller im Gespräch miteinander und erfahrt alles über die vielen Facetten des literarischen Gruselns. 

Wie immer könnt ihr uns eure Fragen im Chat schicken. 


Super excited to be doing this in Munich, Germany…from my publisher’s offices!

#OtherWorldsLive – The Halloween Countdown

8:30 p.m. | online event on LitLounge.tv

When In Doubt For The Monster | Echo

Royce Buckingham, Thomas Olde Heuvelt

Vengeful mountain spirits and criminal monsters – you’d better turn on the lights while reading these novels!

Moderator: Björn Springorum

The fantasy publishers of the Penguin Random House publishing group bring well-known authors to your home in a live stream – and you can ask your questions live.

Vengeful mountain spirits and criminal monsters – you’d better turn on the lights while reading these novels! 

Halloween is just around the corner, the time of witches, ghosts and monsters. Dutch horror author Thomas Olde Heuvelt is very familiar with these characters. He was ennobled by Stephen King for his debut »Hex«, and in his new book »Echo« he takes us to the Swiss Alps, where an ancient mountain spirit comes to life. 

The American bestselling author Royce Buckingham, on the other hand, approaches the monsters from the humorous side in his most recent novel »In Doubt for the Monster (Monster Lawyer)«. Experience the two writers in conversation with each other and learn everything about the many facets of literary horror. 

As always, you can send us your questions in the chat. 

Back to Urban Fantasy

After publishing several medieval fantasy books–five to be exact–I decided to return to urban fantasy, the genre of my very first novel, Demonkeeper / Damliche Damonen. And now I’m celebrating the German release* of my new novel, Im Zweifel für das Monster (Monster Lawyer).

So why write an urban fantasy about a lawyer representing monsters? First of all, urban fantasy is awesome! How fun and scary is it to imagine modern-day monsters among us? Answer: very fun and very scary. Also, writing Im Zweifel für das Monster as an urban fantasy was a natural fit for me—an organic choice. Im Zweifel is a marriage of two passions in my life—I’m an adult lawyer, and I have loved monsters since I was a little boy. There is nothing more “urban” than the law—modern civilizations are built upon it—and monsters are inherently fantastical, and so the natural habitat for a lawyer/monster story is indeed urban fantasy.



Key Seattle Sites in Im Zweifel für das Monster / Im Zweifel für das Monster Cover

A Q&A with my Publisher

Auszüge aus Fragen und Antworten mit meinem Verlag

After several medieval fantasy novels, why did you decide to write urban fantasy?

When I wrote my first novel, Demonkeeper (Dämliche Dämonen), nearly twenty years ago, I was a criminal prosecutor in juvenile court. I loved monsters and fantasy, and the young criminal defendants I was seeing in the courtroom were very real and had hard, gritty lives. So I created young fictional characters and put them in a real-life setting (Seattle), and then used monsters to represent the turmoil and perils of a hard life. It felt perfect for urban fantasy.

Now things have come full circle in my writing career, and I’ve returned to urban fantasy. Crazy as it sounds, the original young fans of Demonkeeper have all grown up! And because I’m writing adult novels, Monster Lawyer (Im Zweifel für das Monster) can be genuinely horrifying, and it is! It’s also serious and fun at the same time. Like Demonkeeper, there are societal themes to give Monster Lawyer depth, but I still weave in humor whenever I can because…well, I’m me.

Warum hast du dich nach mehreren High-Fantasy-Romanen entschieden, Urban Fantasy zu schreiben?

Vor fast zwanzig Jahren schrieb ich mit Dämliche Dämonen meinen ersten Roman. Es war recht junger Urban-Fantasy-Roman, und jetzt bin ich zu meinen Ursprüngen zurückgekehrt, denn so verrückt es klingt: die ursprünglichen jungen Fans der Dämlichen Dämonensind erwachsen geworden! Diese Geschichte ist für sie. Und weil ich jetzt Romane für Erwachsene schreibe, ist Im Zweifel für das Monster wirklich gruselig! Aber ich webe immer noch Humor ein, wann immer ich kann, weil… nun ja … ich ich bin.

Demonkeeper has a lot of humor. How is this with Monster Lawyer?

The fact that Demonkeeper was both spooky and funny is a product of my personality. I like to see the humor in things, even if those things have a dark side. I think it’s good to laugh when addressing death in particular; it helps us deal with our mortality.

It’s the same with Monster Lawyer. The idea of a lawyer representing monsters strikes me as hilarious, and the situations that arise when Daniel Becker represents monsters in legal cases are delightfully ludicrous. But the idea of representing a monster has a very serious side too. I work with lawyers who represent real-life murderers, and their representation of killers can be seen as an analogy to representing “monsters.” This serious underlying theme lends Monster Lawyer depth and makes Daniel’s character arc extremely interesting, especially because of his painful childhood relationship with the monster he’s asked to defend as a grown-up. No more spoilers, but I can tell you that Monster Lawyer is funny and sad and serious and raises lots of ethical questions. It’s truly an adult take on monstrous urban fantasy, but with plenty of immature humor to make it fun too. I hope!

Additionally, writing Monster Lawyer was a real experiment for me in mixing humor and horror. One thing I learned is that the tone of the tale can be “spooky” and funny—those two moods can coexist—but when real “horror” arrives, the humor flees the page, goes into hiding, and doesn’t come back until it’s safe—usually not until the next chapter.

Dämliche Dämonen hat eine Menge Humor. Wie ist das bei Im Zweifel für das Monster?

Die Vorstellung, dass ein Anwalt Monster vertritt, finde ich urkomisch, und die Situationen, die entstehen, wenn Daniel Becker Monster in Rechtsfällen vertritt, sind herrlich lächerlich. Aber ich habe auch gelernt, dass der Ton der Geschichte gruselig und lustig sein kann – diese beiden Stimmungen können nebeneinander bestehen –, aber wenn echter Horror auftaucht, flieht der Humor, versteckt sich und kommt erst zurück, wenn er sicher ist – normalerweise nicht vor dem nächsten Kapitel.

Most authors choose a Private Investigator or a Cop as their hero in Urban Fantasy, but you chose a lawyer. Why?

Well, yes, I am a lawyer, and it is good for me to write what I know. It gives me an interesting and genuine perspective to share, and I can create scenes for my readers that are not cliché or overused. It’s true that many stories use a cop to generate situations for action on the streets, and an attorney is more of an analyst in an office. As a prosecutor I’ve never chased criminals down dark alleys. But the real-life drama of a courtroom is incredible. I’ve tried burglaries, rapes, homicides, you name it. Serious stuff. I handled a home-invasion stabbing where one of the five defendants received a sentence of life without parole. Trying a case in front of a judge and jury and waiting during those tense moments for the verdict to be announced is a heart-pounding, emotionally exhausting experience. Now imagine you’re trying a case with monsters and, if you lose, the penalty is that you get eaten. You get the picture.

Of course, Monster Lawyer’s lawyer-protagonist, Daniel Becker, also goes into the field to track down evidence, and he has a supernatural investigator to help out, so we get plenty of on-the-scene action throughout this particular story.

By the way, lawyers are a natural fit for fantasy. They are experts on rules, and well-developed fantasy worlds have well-defined rules. So do monsters. Vampires have rules—they drink blood, sunburn easily, and only die when you shove a wooden stake through their hearts. Werewolves have rules—full moon transformations, bites that cause lycanthropy, and getting shot with silver bullets really sucks for them. As I like to say, fantasy worlds and monsters have immutable laws, and where there are laws there are lawyers.

Die meisten Autoren wählen einen Privatdetektiv oder Polizisten als ihren Helden in der Urban Fantasy, aber Sie haben sich für einen Anwalt entschieden. Warum?

Nun ja, ich bin Anwalt, und ich schreibe gerne darüber, was ich kenne. So kann ich eine authentische Perspektive vermitteln und dennoch Klischees vermeiden. Im Gegensatz zu Daniel Becker, dem Helden von Im Zweifel für das Monster, habe ich aber noch nie Verbrecher durch dunkle Gassen gejagt. Reale Anwälte sind ja eher die Analytiker im Büro. Aber Daniels Fall ist von der Art, dass man keine offizielle Unterstützung anfordern kann. Also muss er die Action-Szenen selbst durchstehen.

Very excited! Here’s why…

Okay, so the Fall 2022 Random/Penguin House catalog for Germany is out. This is the catalog that goes to booksellers…like Barnes and Noble, Village Books, etc.

Monster Lawyer (by me) is the second book listed under fantasy. This is an “I’m #2!!!” victory, which is awesome by itself. But that’s not all.

Many huge titles get a full page in the catalog. I’ve shown the Game of Thrones page below as an example 10 books–one page. The Star Wars books (written by Terry Brooks, R.A. Salvatore, George Lucas and other random authors of some repute)–two pages.

And Monster Lawyer? One book–two full pages (fun pics below). Wow! Love it. Cautiously optimistic about its lauch. Aww, screw it…crazy excited for the Halloween launch. They’re calling it “Unsere gruseligsten fantasy-titel zu Halloween.” Yeah, I didn’t know either, but Google translate says: “Our spookiest Halloween fantasy title.” I’ll take it!

Looking forward to going to Germany to promote it in October. The last two times my publisher supported/marketed my books like this we ended up on the bestseller list, and so I see good things ahead (and dead people, but that’s from Monster Lawyer II, which I’m currently writing–just did a killer whirlpool sucking down a boat at Deception Pass scene…so much fun).

I am currently reading…

I am currently reading (and enjoying) Ben Aaronovitch’s novel Rivers of London. I’ll admit I’m a sucker for urban fantasies, where the monsters walk among us!

Rivers of London is good stuff, with lots of supernatural fun and, of course, London. What a super setting. The tone is not quite as zany as Christopher Moore’s Dirty Job (set in San Francisco), but it is amusing in its own right. I love these books that explore famous cities well enough that the city essentially becomes a character in the story. They are eerily like my upcoming novel (summer ’22), which is an urban fantasy that explores the mysterious dark-n-rainy city of Seattle–the U.S. title is MONSTER LAWYER (because, yeah, I’m also a lawyer), and the German title is to be determined. Stay tuned, because I intend to take you on a monster-guided tour through the dark places in Seattle.

But back to Rivers of London. Great book. Check it out if you like urban fantasy.

Click “Home” above to go to Ben Aaronovitch’s page!

My best,

Royce

Authors: Want Sales Traction? Get Out Your Wallet.

Guest Blog by: Cara Landi Buckingham

Authors everywhere please take note. If you want to make writing a career, you might need to pay for it, and not just in blood, sweat and tears. My friends, you are going to need to set aside some cold hard cash to support your book sales, because while it is an honor to be published, it’s even better to be read.

My amazing author-husband (or husband-author), Royce, and I have come to this conclusion after 12 years of watching his books win awards, become bestsellers, get movie deals…or not. We also recently read an informative article about Author James Patterson’s brand-building method.

Writing books is a business, and part of running a business includes effective marketing and promotional efforts–hopefully with backing from the publisher. Reality check: the vast majority of the time (unless written by a celebrity or an author who is already a top seller) publishers don’t put a lot of money or effort into book promos. Support depends on the publisher. It might include a minimal amount of PR and, if you’re lucky, some point-of-sale items for book stores to use. If your book is lucky enough to be a lead title of a new imprint, you will definitely get more support.

I can say this with confidence, because some of Royce’s work has received fantastic support and–surprise, surprise–hit best seller lists, while others were released with little fanfare, resulting in fewer sales. Because of this reality, in one case we hired a PR firm to do a print/radio media and blog campaign to support his book, The Dead Boys. It was effective. Stay tuned for a blog entry with the clearly positive results of that self-funded campaign.

There are all sorts of articles advising authors on marketing strategies and tactics, with a range of costs associated with them. Understandably, in most cases authors take a DIY approach and opt for low to no-cost options. Here are some of the most popular suggestions:

  • Get reviews
  • Do a book store reading/signing
  • Send press releases to local media
  • Create a website
  • Send newsletters
  • Get on social media – you must devote all your waking hours Twitter, FaceBook, Instagram, etc. etc….
  • Do school visits
  • Attend writing conferences
  • Present at writing conferences

These are all great, but the ROI on them individually is small. And collectively…don’t get me started. They take a TON of time to do and do well. How are you supposed to get any writing done? Let alone raise kids, have a day job, golf, garden, shower, etc. Additionally, some of them require networking and connections to which authors just don’t have access. Let’s face it, you are an author because you want to tell stories, not take random pot-shots at promotional efforts that might or might not move the needle on sales. And sales is what anyone in the industry cares about when you start pitching your second, third, and fourth books for a deal…if you get to book two.

So here is what Royce and I wish we had done years ago and have committed to as we move forward. We are creating a marketing fund with advances and royalties to consistently build audience and sales. This is essentially a dividend reinvestment model. Our efforts will be targeted and involve partnerships with industry professionals to create effective and coordinated campaigns that get his stories the exposure they need to sell.

Have you had a marketing revelation for your books? We’d love to hear them. Otherwise, stay tuned for the next blog exploring the possibilities of partering with your publisher.

 

Contribute to the Die Klinge des Waldes Wiki Site

“Royce Buckingham creates new worlds in his books as I would have imagined as a child. With attention to detail, very exciting and entertaining – I’ve rarely been able to put it out of my hands.” — Karateka, Reviewer

German fantasy fans love the world building in my newest epic fantasy novel, Die Klinge des Waldes (The Blade of the Forest). Now there is way for English readers to join in exploring it too–the Die Klinge des Waldes fandom wiki site, built by the fans themselves.

Here’s the coolest thing I found out about about the Die Klinge des Waldes wiki site. Anyone can contribute. For German readers, write in your favorite quote, storyline, district–you name it! For English readers, check it out, add your thoughts and questions and tell my agent John Rudolph why you would love to have the novel available in the United States. 

The wiki site includes facts about all of the major or minor districts in the far off City of Filth, including primary character bios and quotes, as well as an entire page dedicated to all of the story’s characters. I loved creating this world and am gratified to see that readers love learning about it. Their comments (translated from German) speak for themselves:

“Each district is like a small kingdom with its own laws, customs, festivities, and methods of execution (Royce Buckingham is extremely creative, which is amazingly intriguing in a macabre way). In the course of the plot, you get to know quite a few districts such as the carpentry or the carnival district, but also over the other districts information is scattered over and over again, which I personally found incredibly exciting. This city looks like a mini-universe to itself…”  Miss Page Turner

“With “The Blade of the Forest,” Royce Buckingham reveals a fantasy novel set in a very different world from his trilogy for “The King’s Will” and his followers. And that’s exactly where the great power of the novel lies, you can completely explore the strange world and explore numerous different cultures, locations and connections.”  Poldis Hörspielseite

“World-building really succeeded in this novel. The map on the first page already gives an interesting insight about the individual lands. Among other things, there is the forest kingdom of Strata at the beginning, which impresses by the fact that the rich live in towers, which were built around trees and the simple people, who lives on the ground, are called Grundlinge (Grounders).”  Steffi R, Reviewer

“Let’s get to the world Buckingham created: it’s fascinating. Partly an ancient variant of our world and yet somehow different. On the other hand fantastic and yet not so fantastic that it could not have been that way.”  Daisy D

I’m excited and flattered that fans have created this site, and I’m eager to share it with you! Visit at: Die Klinge des Waldes Wiki.

Alert! Die Klinge des Waldes Author Reading

I recently read from my novel Die Klinge des Waldes at a medieval masquerade party. It was so much fun to play the part of my character, Duke Carni, otherwise known as the Mad Fool and leader of the Carnival District (my favorite district of 35 in the City of Filth).

Click the image and enjoy!

Die Klinge des Waldes Book Trailer

We had some fun with friends and family making this book trailer. Enjoy.

Coming soon – a video of my book reading from Die Klinge des Waldes featuring one of the dukes from the novel! 

Yours,

Royce Buckingham

Click image to start video

Royce Writes: The Skype Visit

Technology is a beautiful thing. In June, I used it to virtually visit students 3,000 miles away from the comfort (and safety) of my living room.

Thank you so much!  The students LOVED Skyping with you!  I’m looking forward to the next discussion…” – Kimberly Bramfeld, Librarian Edmund J. O’Neal Middle School of Excellence

Skype visits have been a great option for me – a busy writer, lawyer and dad – to connect with fans without a lot of travel. And schools love it, because I offer them for free. The only payment I require is for students and their teachers to prepare by reading part or all of the book and creating a list of questions to ask ahead of time. 

Find out more HERE.

Royce Writes: The School Visit

I am looking forward to an upcoming school visit with students at Edmund J. O’Neal Middle School in Albany, NY next month, but I won’t be traveling there to do it.

Their wonderful librarian, Kimberly Bramfeld, noticed I offer free Skype sessions. Skype is a brilliant and convenient way for me to connect with readers and for schools to give students the experience of meeting a real, live author. Well, virtually live.

I’ve had years of public speaking experience and adapt my presentations to fit any audience – whether in-person, on Skype, or at professional conferences.

To make it the best experience possible, I strongly advise teachers/librarians to prepare their students by having them read, or listen to, the book that is the subject of the visit. In this case, it’s The Dead Boys .

Interested in scheduling an appearance? Please email me via my website’s Contact tab. 

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