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Join us on Tuesday, March 28th at 5:30 pm for an In Conversation event with author Veronica Henry. She’ll be chatting with Yasmin Angoe about the final book of her fantasy series, The Foreign Exchange. Book two of two in the Mambo Reina series, The Foreign Exchange follows a Vodou priestess turned amateur sleuth who, while investigating a ritual murder, is embroiled in an insidious case of corruption that reaches beyond the shadows of New Orleans. We’re excited to have Veronica in store with us and can’t wait to hear all about her writing processes, what inspires her, and ask questions about her book. So don’t miss out on this free event!
After solving a crime blamed on Vodou in New Orleans’ French Quarter, Vodou priestess turned amateur detective Reina Dumond has returned to her benevolent work as a healer. But when her friend and enigmatic client Evangeline “Vangie” Stiles comes to her for a spell, Mambo Reina quickly realizes what Vangie really needs is a sleuth. Something is amiss in the Stileses’ marriage. Five thousand dollars has inexplicably appeared in the bank account Vangie shares with her scam-artist husband, Arthur, and she smells trouble. So does Reina. Especially when her investigation into Arthur’s likely new con leads to murder. Considering the manner of death and the signs on the victim’s body, Reina recognizes it for what it is: ritual magic of the vodouisant kind. As Reina digs deeper, she encounters a conspiracy exploiting vulnerable youth―one of whom may have abilities just like hers. With the help of her friends Darryl and Tyka, Reina must hone her ever-evolving skills to uncover a mystery that reaches further than she imagined.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Veronica G. Henry is the author of Bacchanal and, in the Mambo Reina series, The Quarter Storm and The Foreign Exchange. Her work has debuted at #1 on multiple Amazon bestseller charts and was chosen as an editors’ pick for Best African American Fantasy. She is a Viable Paradise alum and a member of SFWA and the MWA. Her stories have appeared, or are forthcoming, in the Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction and FIYAH literary magazine.
ABOUT THE MODERATOR
Yasmin Angoe is the award-winning, first-generation Ghanaian American author of the acclaimed thrillers, Her Name Is Knight and They Come At Knight. She received the 2020 Eleanor Taylor Bland Award from Sisters in Crime and, in 2021, an Anthony Award nomination for Best First Novel. Her books were listed as Amazon’s “Best Book of the Month” and Editor’s Picks and were optioned for TV which are currently in development. Reviews of Yasmin’s work can be found in The New York Times, OprahDaily.com, Deadline, The Guardian, PopSugar, and Woman’s World. The final of the Nena Knight trilogy, IT ENDS WITH KNIGHT, releases September 2023.
You want to get into horror but you don’t know where to start. This is your sign. This is an intensive, boot campy, crash course 4 week program that will throw you head first into reading, writing, talking, screaming, digesting, sweating, and bleeding horror content. It’s going to be a blast!
We will meet on the following Thursdays: May 4, 11, 18, 25 from 7-9PM EST. Over those 4 weeks, participants will read a number of stories from various subgenres with the intent to identify tools and techniques used by the author. Implementing lessons and notes from class, students will workshop one story they’re passionate about over the duration of the course. At the end you’re going to have a story you’re proud of, but also you will have had a little tapas of what horror can be. Welcome to the fold!!
Week One: Building the Scary Premise and Your Scared Characters
After introductions we’ll talk about what brought us to this class and what stories (if any) are something we want to pursue. Through a series of generative exercises we’ll make your protagonist and the scary thing for them to encounter.
Writing: The first draft of your story!
Week Two: Setting, Secondary Characters, and the Talking about the Monster
We’ll workshop our pieces. Then we’ll go over the role of setting, the importance of characters for your protagonist to interact with, and how information can build suspense about the monster.
Readings after Class: “The Willows” by Algernon Blackwood, “Bulldozer” by Laird Barron
Write: The second draft of your story!
Week Three: The Villain’s Perspective and Your Character’s Agency
We’ll workshop your pieces again. We’ll discuss the importance of the villain’s perspective and how nailing it down can make the conflict clearer. We’ll also go over agency and what it means for your character being agentic vs. passive.
Readings: “The Cabbit” by Maria Dong, “No Matter Which Way They Turned” by Brian Evenson, and “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been” by Joyce Carol Oates.
Write: The third draft of your story!
Week Four: One More Workshop
This is the last class! What a doozy! We’ll workshop everyone’s pieces and talk about what techniques and tools we enjoyed, utilized, didn’t quite mesh with.
Should You Have the Time…
Read: “The Jaunt” by Stephen King, “The Boogeyman” by Stephen King, “Rainy Season” by Stephen King, “Hairy Legs and All” by Stephen Graham Jones, “The Moths” by Elina Hawkinsons, “The Coward II” by M. Gira, with more to come.
Alex Gonzalez is a WGA screenwriter, author, and instructor. He teaches fiction writing at various platforms and teaches MFA level screenwriting at Long Island University. He is one of the creators of PoC satire site Flexx Magazine, horror-zine youarenotalone, and has been published in various magazines and anthologies, with his novel Land Shark debuting in 2020. He has been a consultant on novels, treatments, and screenplays. His feature script Negative Space is currently in development with Extra A Productions (The Giant, Little Woods) and his second novel is on submission through FinePrint Lit.