THE DEVIL’S PLAYGROUND

THE DEVIL’S PLAYGROUND: death of a Juggalette in the SFV

Much of the inspiration for the real side of life in the Night Angels Chronicles came from my experiences raising children as a single mother on the mean streets of Los Angeles suburbia. I write essays on the topic and this is the latest one, published in NAILED magazine. It’s a tragic story, about a friend of my son’s.

There’s the fun side of writing Urban Fantasy, the magical world a writer can create where anything is possible. For me, I’m enjoying my vampires and denizens, the angels and demons, the Lizard City beneath Los Angeles , the Key of Mystery and the tablet upon which is written the Secrets to the Origins of Life. It’s been especially fun to build the history of the Night Angels, going back to the Pharaohs of Egypt and the Ottoman Empire.

And then there’s a real side of Urban Fantasy. For me, I’ve chosen to peel back the façade of a suburb and see what’s really underneath. As a single mother, raising kids on the mean streets of Los Angeles suburbia, I’ve had first-hand experience of this. As the co-founder of a creative writing program for incarcerated youth, I’ve heard so many horrible stories of injustice. I’ve made friends with my students, now going back over twenty years, encouraging them through their struggles. And I always did my best as my kids were growing up to be there for the young people of my neighborhood who were struggling with addiction and gangs.

NIGHT ANGELS CHRONICLES is a blend of these two worlds–the fantastical and the often more horrific reality. This essay shows what really happens, and how, sadly, parents and community leaders most often don’t want to acknowledge the truth of what our children face every day when they walk out the door and into the world. I hope to do my part to change that blind mentality.

NIGHT OWL REVIEWS Author Interview

Author Interview Night Owl Reviews

Check out this sort and sweet interview in Night Owl Reviews.

BOOK OF ANGELS COVER DETAIL

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Sharing this beautiful cover detail from Book of Angels. As an artist myself, I have great respect and awe for the artist, Jay Aheer. She puts her soul into her work! She definitely has captures my vision for Key of Mystery and Book of Angels.

Book of Angels for sale at Evernight Teen

Do Artists have a Responsibility to Society?

view from my balcony

View from my balcony right now as I write! Lake Arenal, Costa Rica.

Here is an article I just published on my other blog, which I would also like to share here.

Do Artists have a Responsibility to Society?

Almost Time for BOOK OF ANGELS!

Almost time to reveal the cover for Book of Angels, volume II in the NIGHT ANGELS CHRONICLES!!!

Here are all the titles…as of right now:

Key of Mystery

Book of Angels

Cave of Secrets

Land of Talismans

Throne of Desire

Door of Destiny

It’s getting intense, I can tell  you. I’ve pretty much finished Cave of Secrets and I am now working on Land of Talismans. Things are heating up in Oak Haven. Not mention underground…and across the world. And I’m in the perfect place to get inspired. Tropical paradise Costa Rica.

 

Book of Angels, Volume II in NIGHT ANGELS CHRONICLES, and Editor’s Pick

Book of Angels is soon to be released and I am thrilled to announce that it is an Editor’s Pick with my fabulous editor, Melissa Hosack, Evernight Teen. Find your way deeper into the secrets of the NIGHT ANGELS CHRONICLES with Volume II. Learn more about denizens. Do you know what they are?
“A denizen is a foreigner allowed certain rights in an adopted country.”

This is who the Night Angels are and who Sera and her brother Salem become. What, really, does it mean? How at home do you really feel you are in your world? Can you ever escape it for a better one? What is the price that you pay if you do?

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I was recently in Bolivia for two months, finishing up Volume III, Cave of Secrets. Amazing experience. I found a fantastic boxing gym and became obsessed with the colonial churches. I wrote my first travel essay, Writing and Fighting in Sucre, and it will be published in http://www.gonomad.com soon! I had interviews published in The Missing Slate, http://themissingslate.com/2016/05/18/an-interview-with-my-world-project-founder-karen-hunt, Fantasy Lit Magazine, and Talk Supe.

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Angels with Gold Wings in the Church of the Santa Clara Monastery

How could I not be inspired for NIGHT ANGELS CHRONICLES when images such as this angel in Santa Clara Convent and Church surrounded me?

The month of June found me back in Los Angeles to catch up with my kids and to teach some kick boxing classes. I celebrated July 4th with friends in Calabasas, on a hill overlooking the San Fernando Valley, where so much of NIGHT ANGELS CHRONICLES takes place.

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But traveling calls to me! I am in Costa Rica, on beautiful Lake Arenal, writing for three months. Who knows where this experience will lead me?

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Above is the view on my run in the little pueblo where I live, my neighborhood. This place is inspiring me as I start to write Volume IV, Land of Talismans.

These books mean so much to me. They are entertaining but they also have a message of unity and they ask the most fundamental questions that all humans want to answer, and yet we cannot find the answer to these questions no matter how hard we search.

Now, as I write this, the tropical rain beats down on the roof and the sound is intense. Lightening strikes and clouds roll across the lake as if preparing for battle. I love this planet with all its diverse beauty. This planet is fine, it is humanity that is messed up! I hope these books can influence a new generation to unite and fight against oppression in all its forms. Travel the world. Find your path. Learn from those who seem different–discover how you are really all the same and celebrate the wonder and artistic expression of your differences. Speak your truth. Stand up against fear and manipulation.

As I quote Alexander Pope at the beginning of Book of Angels, “Aspiring to be gods, angels fell; Aspiring to be angels, men rebel.”

Cemetario General, looking just like apartment buildings for the dead

Cemetario General, Sucre. Where we all end up eventually. Little apartment buildings for the dead. Except that Sera escapes this fate. And finds herself embroiled in a curse greater than death.

Walking on the Roof of San Filipe Neri Church at Sunset

Walking on the roof of San Filipe Nero Church, I found the answers to some of these questions…..which only led to more questions of a deeper nature. A beautiful journey. And not an easy one. But well worth it.

KEY OF MYSTERY featured in YA Insider’s Grand Opening Event

YA Insider’s Grand Opening Event

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This is a cool event happening for the entire month of May. Key of Mystery is one of the featured books. There are give-aways, quizzes and more. Check it out!

Interview about MY WORLD PROJECT

The Missing Slate Interview with My World Project Founder Karen Hunt, aka KH Mezek

#For me, this is a way of life. It isn’t a “cause,” it isn’t a “movement.” I can’t put some spin on it. There aren’t any buzz words. It is how I choose to live my life, and I really can’t help it. It is so much a part of who I am.”

Honored to have this interview by Constance A. Dunn published in The Missing Slate, an international arts and literary magazine. The interview tells about My World Project and the backstory leading up to it. And it talks a bit about Night Angels Chronicles. Because I write about what I know, what I believe and many of the experiences I have had working with youth in brutal situations, and also my world-travels, have inspired this series. Here is a brief excerpt from the backstory part of the interview…

“I went on a personal quest. I met a woman named Alma Woods who was responsible for single-handedly getting the Watts Public Library built. And to illustrate the politics, they didn’t want to name the Library after her, they wanted to name it after some big-wig politician and there was a huge public outcry and they had no choice but to name the library after her. She was a simple lady, lived in a simple house in Watts and I would go and “sit at her feet” as it were, she was a real guru, she taught me so much! She would take me around the neighborhood and I saw Watts through her eyes. If there were kids loitering outside the liquor store she would reprimand them and they would hang their heads in guilt and listen to her. She was respected. She was fearless. I grew to love her. She encouraged me to follow my heart and not be afraid of where it led me. It was after that that I went into Central Juvenile Hall and talked to the principal, Dr. Arthur McCoy, an older version of the nutty professor and the most amazing human being, and he let me start teaching there, along with the amazing teacher in the girls’ school, Cheryl Neely.

Like a beautiful, magical web, one person has led to another in my life. Not big celebrities, or what you would call “movers and shakers,” but the salt of the earth people. The ones who really have the power because they don’t care about it. They are the ones who truly balance the good against the evil. The ones we never hear about. I know I use the word amazing a lot, but really, there is no better word for all these people.

HOW MY TRAVELS AND WORK WITH YOUTH AROUND THE WORLD INSPIRES NIGHT ANGELS CHRONICLES

FANTASY LITERATURE, Expanded Universe article about KEY OF MYSTERY

Writing to me is more than sitting at a computer and obsessing about my stories. What I write about has been greatly influenced by my life experiences. And one of the most important influences has been travel. I’ve been traveling since I was a child and has many amazing adventures as a result. This led me to want to share the power of communication through art and words with children in remote areas around the world. This, MY WORLD PROJECT.

Check out the featured article in Expanded Universe. And please go to the MY WORLD PROJECT Facebook page to find out more about this important work with youth around the world.