Gina Penn, unabridged.

Archive for April, 2011

World Horror Convention

If you write horror in any form, be it gothic, dystopian horror or plain old slash and gore horror, The World Horror Convention is the place to be.

This year the WHC is attacking the city of Austin, home of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre. It doesn’t get more appropriate than that.

So, if you’re out and about in Austin, looking for something to do on a ninety-some degree day (thank goodness for AC) swing on by and join us for sessions, book signings and maybe even some no-good, bloody fun.

Remember: what happens in Austin, stays in Austin.

See you there.

Book Blog Review

I received a really good review by Kara Malinczak this morning. Here’s the link:

I’m really excited about this!

ASPCA Weekend

I don’t think a lot of people know this about me but I am a guardian with the ASPCA.

The ASPCA, for anyone unaware, is the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and it’s  a pretty awesome society.  They work tirelessly toward protecting animals, getting them spayed/neutered, rescue efforts and getting abused animals out of bad situations, helping them to get healthy and hopefully find forever homes.

I am a guardian with this fine organization, which means that I donate on a monthly basis. And I’m happy to do this because I’m an animal lover.

Personally, I own four cats, two dogs, a rat and two fish. Besides the fish, which were purchases from my local store, the rat, which previously belonged to my niece (she’s a college student and caring for a rat would have been difficult with her already full schedule), and one of my dogs, Soldier, all of my pets were either strays, rescues or shelter pets. Soldier was different because he was a gift for my husband from a long time ago (so long that it was before I came along, as a fact) and had he been with me at the time, I wouldn’t have liked the fact that he came from a place other than a shelter.

I love all my animals and take care of them as though they are children. A lot of animal lovers are like this. One of my “kids” requires daily medication for seizures. Last year I had to put one down because she went into kidney failure. In some way, I’m still in mourning over her; she’d been my best friend since I was a teenager. She was given to me by a neighbor with a two year old that used her as a toy and didn’t appreciate how small and delicate she was. I often wear a picture of her around my neck in a heart locket. Her name was Spirit and she was mine for about 15 years-almost half my life.

And I don’t tell you this to gain sympathy or attention, I do it because there is a magnitude to which I love them. A line I’m willing to cross and a certain amount of sacrifice I’ll make for them. There are too many people out there that buy a pet and then the pet becomes an inconvenience. Maybe something happened to your life, good or bad, and now suddenly a pet is more of a problem than a family member. When I decide to take on the responsibility of caring for a pet, that pet is mine until the day they die. No joke. I don’t care WHAT happens in my life-our relationship is forever. That’s the way it should be.

So, anyway, for this weekend and occasionally throughout the lifetime of my publishing career, I will be donating the proceeds of the sale of my book, “Learning To Fly” to the ASPCA. If you know animal lovers, please pass this on. If you love animals but don’t like the genre, buy the book and know that you’re supporting a worthy cause. It’s only a dollar! And whatever I profit this weekend will go toward the care of an animal in need.

I look forward to having a productive relationship with this charity for a long time. Help me out with that one!

In case you’re new, you can purchase the book by using the links at the top right of the site. Any questions? Ask.

Thank you,


Edit: Thanks to everyone who purchased a book to help the ASPCA! I will definitely do this again very soon.

As Of Late

It’s been a while since I blogged so I thought I’d entertain a few people by giving them the skinny of my latest activities.

The writing is going well! The new book is coming along wonderfully and editing The Dark Layer is also moving along. Dark Layer should be ready by sometime in May but I don’t want to jinx it and give a date. I’m very superstitious.

If you want to know more about The Dark Layer, check out the menu at the above right corner of the screen.

Also, I’m meeting with a Cincinnati Scribbler tomorrow for a (much needed) bullshit session.

On the personal front, my mom is no longer in MVH. She’s been moved to a long-term care facility and has been working on gaining weight and getting her lungs to the point to where she can breathe without a vent. She’s doing very well there. Last weekend when I went to visit, she was able to talk (for the first time since January) and everything out of her mouth was a complaint! That means she’s feeling better.

There are a few other things going on that I’ll be happy to tell everyone about when the time comes!

Looking forward to the Kentucky Writer’s Conference this weekend and seeing my friend, Ricki Schultz!

Take care everyone!


Free At Last

I’m feeling magnanimous today so I thought I’d offer a coupon to anyone that wants to take a look at my book but the .99 price tag is too steep (I’m being a little disdainful here but you can forgive me for giving you a free book).


This coupon is good for today only. And it’s only good on the Smashwords website. After that, there’s no crying in baseball.

Let me know if you have any problems.

Get it while you can.


Kentucky Writer’s Conference

On Friday, April 15th, I will be heading south to the Kentucky Writer’s Conference in Bowling Green.

This conference is small but free (yes, that’s right, FREE) and will have Writer’s Digest’s own Chuck Sambuchino there giving lectures about the following:

-memoir writing

-finding an agent

-shaping scenes

-query writing

-using humor in writing

For more info about this conference, visit Chuck’s blog, “Guide to Literary Agents”:

Also, the very next day is the Southern Kentucky Bookfest.

Hope to see some familiar faces there!


Books and Company

It’s teen fiction night and I will be at the Books and Company tonight to meet author Mara Purnhagen. I know, I know, I’m a horror author but sometimes you gotta crawl out of that cave you’ve been dwelling in and socialize with other writers. Unfortunately, the Cincinnati/Dayton area doesn’t have too much of a literary scene so when stuff like this comes along, you gotta take advantage.–1121505.html

I’m thinking it’s going to be fun!

Also, my book is out for Kindle, Nook and Smashwords right now so if you haven’t checked it out yet, what are you waiting for? Click on one of the many links for the path to enlightenment. Just kidding, but it is a good read.