Monday, June 29, 2015

Our fan-girl experience at the Seattle tour stop.

We've been posting these on our other site, but we decided to preserve this experience for Daemons Domain, since it was such a special and personal weekend for us.

Ferry ride into downtown Seattle.
Pictured above is beautiful Seattle.  We were really fortunate that this tour stop was during the dry season (June, July, August, and most of September)!  One of us has lived in the area for over 10 years, so for her it was quite a different experience to get the 'tourist's eye-view' of her adopted city.  It was especially fun to take another Daemon along for the ride!  All of Saturday was spent traipsing around the downtown area.  We started at the Ferry docks, made our way through the market and wound up on the opposite side of town at the Seattle Center.  There was also a glimpse of another fictional hero's home! We didn't see Mr. Grey, but we did get a peek at the craning our necks really far back!
Escala - Downtown Seattle
Click to enlarge

On Sunday the 14th of June, the final scheduled stop of Deb's traveling road show was in Lake Forest Park, WA.  We battled Seattle traffic to make it there on time!  We did, with 10 minutes to spare!  If it tells you anything, we left with an hour 'cushion' time.  Yes.  The traffic in the area is that bad!  It was a beautiful sunny afternoon, and there were many excited fans at Third Place Books—several of whom traveled some really long distances!  Deb's mood matched the day - sunny and warm!

We also got a lot of our stash signed!  Our 'stash', dear readers, is how we are able to offer frequent giveaways!  The U.S. publishers have been very generous, and we keep an eye out for the U.K. publications through online book clearinghouses.  We also have great partners that we work with in order to compile wonderful packages.  This year, we have some awesome prizes tucked away in our closets!  It is getting to the point where our significant others are looking at us sideways though.  Closet space is valuable real estate!  We digress.  Onward!

Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park, WA.
 Summary of the talk:

Deb at the podium at Third Place Books.

Our author opened up with an overview of the journey covered in A Discovery of Witches and Shadow of Night.  We had a good number of attendees who had not yet read The Book of Life (lots of enthusiastic newbies!) so specifics about The Book of Life were avoided.  Deb mesmerized the audience with a reading of the opening passages of The Book of Life.  It was lovely to spend a little time with Philippe.

Deb stressed that time travel wasn't a gimmick. It was a way of highlighting the  importance of history in modern day life.  Matthew and Diana had to go to the past to learn important things about themselves and each other in order to grow and flourish as a couple.  The cusp of  the 17th century had to be the backdrop for Shadow of Night because it was the era when science made magic go away.  The settings of the trilogy, both past and present, were her way of bringing readers into the academic world.  It was her love letter to libraries, librarians, and researchers in a way.

 The first fifty pages of TBOL were a struggle for Deb.  She wrote the opening from 10 different points of view (including Corra's!) before she settled on the opening we all love.  She also divulged that she wrote the start of the book at Hedgebrook across the sound on Whidbey Island, WA. 

She revealed that she definitely has more tales to tell.  She loves fiction!  She has a number of "squirming puppies" and she'll probably spend the next six months sorting through them before she settles on a theme for her next story. 

The Q&A offered up some great tidbits touching on the trilogy and aspects of Deb's life.

As a professor, she uses fiction as part of her syllabus at USC.  She doesn't use any of her books, fiction or non-fiction, because her students have the source - her.  She's used Umberto Eco, J.K. Rowling and Arthur Miller in the past.

Fun fact: John Dee's library was rescued from a pie maker who was using the parchment as rudimentary "non stick cookware".

Deb related some stories about her academic colleagues' reactions to her decision to write fiction.  Her response to inquiries about using a pen name was the best: Women writers had been forced to use "Anonymous" for centuries hiding their identities and gender. She wasn't about to take a giant step backwards and hide behind a pseudonym. One of her favorite parts of academic conferences is when colleagues sidle up to her during breaks and tell her, in hushed tones, about their fictional forays, one of which involved a librarian and her magical cat.

The next question was whether there was a caste system in place for the vampire society depicted in AST.  Deb explained it as a society where there were responsibilities rather than rights.  Society was predicated on a life of service.  Everyone had a role.  Some people fought; some worked; some prayed. It was symbiotic and modeled on medieval society's ideas of family.  Family wasn't determined by blood relationships and much as proximity and affinity.  Practically speaking, living under the same roof defined a family.

When asked why she didn't have Shakespeare engaged directly with the main characters and chose to feature Marlowe instead, she pointed out that because of her deep respect for history she wouldn't change the known facts.  In this case, it was a known fact that Marlowe and Roydon were friends.  There was no evidence that Shakespeare and Roydon had crossed paths. She also pointed out that Shakespeare wasn't Shakespeare yet.  He was a struggling playwright looking to make a name for himself in 1590-91.   In the signing line, Deb confided that Gallowglass' tales may have inspired "A Midsummer's Night Dream", "The Tempest" and "Hamlet".

When asked about her writing style, Deb called herself a "driver" rather than an "outliner". She knows her starting point, some major landmarks, and her destination.  She doesn't know her "route".  It's her practice to write at least 2 pages a day. Her favorite part of the process is when something "clicks", and she has that moment of clarity.  She also somewhat sheepishly admitted to enjoying the revisions process on her fiction project.

In response to a question regarding other vampire families and whether Deb has "become acquainted" with them, she indicated we had "met" several of them, specifically identifying Domenico and Gerbert as the head of prominent vampire families.

Speaking of families, Deb gave us some insight to her family history, sharing that she came from a long line of  Scottish dissenters who were invited to leave for the colonies.  She also alluded to Daniel Shay and Shay's Rebellion. Marcus and Gallowglass were both reflect aspects of Deb's family history.

Concluding our awesome day:

The signing line was a highlight, as always.  We got to visit with old friends, make new ones, and try, mostly unsuccessfully, to get Deb to give us hints on the million little mysteries that make up the  de Clermont and Bishop family histories.   We bid Deb a farewell (until next time!) and went on to close out our adventure.

We had dinner with the lovely Ginger from All Souls Pod, had some drinks, and then put her on the plane to back to California—carrying an over-sized cardboard poster of the "The Book of Life"—we're glad the airline didn't hassle her!  And as we understand it, Laura of All Souls Con has it now, safely in her possession.

After we got home, we had some FaceTime with our partner in this endeavor — we'll call her the "Maven Daemon" of Chicagoland.  We discussed our weekend, how we would cover this event, and made plans for the launch of this very site.  We also had a discussion about our other projects in the works! Very productive!  We can't wait to share exactly what we discussed!  In time, friends.  In time.  :-)

What a great weekend!   By the way, if you are visiting the Seattle area and wander into Pike's Place Market, we recommend The Pink Door.  The food was wonderful, and the atmosphere was delightfully daemonic!

Until next time,
feed your daemons.

P.S. There is one last stop on Deb's tour:
July 8 – 7:00 pm
Pages: a bookstore, Manhattan Beach, California
For more information, see Deb's FB announcement
Keep an eye on Deb's event calendar for detail updates on this rescheduled event.

P.P.S. If you didn't make it to a signing, we recommend watching this video (recorded at Politics and Prose in Washington D.C.): Watch Deb's talk at Politics and Prose

Friday, June 26, 2015

The Daemon Guide to 'The Book of Life

Presenting “The Daemon Guide to The Book of Life",  Book 3 of the All Souls Trilogy

If you were successful in completing books one and two of the All Souls Trilogy, 'A Discovery of Witches', and 'Shadow of Night,' but haven’t picked up 'The Book of Life' yet, we are here for you!

This is also a great refresher for people who haven’t picked up the books in a while.

Click to see "The Daemon Guide to The Book of Life" <----Click!

When we published our last guide, we said that we understand that there are different types of readers, and some of them (maybe you?) may not have even picked up the books yet for whatever reason.  The books are too long, maybe it’s not your genre, or you just want to wait for the television show.  All valid reasons, and of course we don’t want to force anything on our followers.  That said, we adore this series (ya think?) and believe that everyone can get something out of it!

'The Book of Life" concludes Matthew and Diana's harrowing adventures.  And of course, it's still a fantasy novel containing all of the creatures we learned to love/hate in Books 1 & 2, plus a couple more!

We hope these guides help you get through what may seem like a daunting task...they are large books!  But we believe that once you are immersed in this world, you won't be able to put them down.

There will be spoilers in this guide, especially if you haven't read the other two books!

Start with 'A Discovery of Witches' - See the corresponding Guide
Continue with 'Shadow of Night' - See the corresponding Guide 

The .PDF version is available in the downloads library so you can print it, and have it by your side while you read.

Until next time!

Monday, June 22, 2015

Remember the Past, Await the Future - Pt 4

What a busy week in our colliding worlds...we'll do a quick recap:


AST World

•  VIDEO:  Aerial View of Chateau Dauphin

Posted by Deb Harkness on Twitter.
Words of wisdom!
•  Our author released a Matthew 2 playlist in honor of his rebirthday: Matthew's Playlist

•  She also visited Seattle on the original final leg of her tour on the 14th of June at Third Place Books.  We Daemons were there, and we're going to post a report here...but we've been crazy busy lately!

July 8 – 7:00 pm
Pages: a bookstore, Manhattan Beach, California
For more information, see Deb's FB announcement
Keep an eye on Deb's event calendar for detail updates on this rescheduled event.

Mary's shoe. Daemon whimsy posted on Twitter last week... 

•  Speaking of our new domain... launched on the 19th of June 2015. This new site is a strictly All Souls Trilogy focused fansite.  If you are a fan of the series, come and visit!  Ok!  We are done with the personal plug!  But seriously!  Visit!


Reminder on Deb’s book signing tips for all of you headed to Pages: A Bookstore, in July: 

•  Please check her EVENTS feed on Facebook for complete event information, including signing line policies and ticket buy links (if they have them).

•  She recommends always checking back with the venue to make sure your pre-orders are set (if you made them). This is especially vital if you want to order the new paperback boxed set of the trilogy (on sale now), the hardback boxed set of the trilogy (with commonplace book included), or hardbacks of ADOW or SON. They will have these items on hand in limited supply.


All Souls Pod, All Souls Con, and Daemons Domain are holding a joint giveaway!

Prize includes:
1 Signed paperback copy of The Book of Life
1 Antenna Witchball
1 TBOL Holographic Pin
1 "New Broom" magnet
1 Audiobook sample from Penguin Audio
...and to sprinkle some whimsy into it...a copy of Em's recipe for Vanilla Vampire Walnuts!

Enter today --->

Til next time!

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Saturday, June 20, 2015

Summer Solstice Contest!

Thanks to All Souls Pod and All Souls Con for teaming up with us to do this contest!

Included in this giveaway:
1 signed paperback copy of US edition of The Book of Life
1 Antenna witch Ball
1 Holographic TBOL Pin
1 "New Broom" Magnet
1 Audio Sample from Penguin Books
 ~ and...for a bit of whimsy...a copy of Em's recipe for Vanilla Vampire Walnuts!

Enter below!
Please read the terms/conditions at the bottom of this post.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
*international* giveaway runs from *now* through 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time, Tuesday, June 30, 2015.  The *one* winner in this INTERNATIONAL giveaway will receive the following:
1 x paperback copy of “The Book of Life” signed by the author, Deborah Harkness
1 x antenna witchball
1 x holographic TBOL pin
1 x “New Broom” magnet
1 x audio sample from Penguin Books
The recipe for Em’s Vampire Walnuts!
Entry/"point" accrual:
“Like" each of the hosts’ FB pages for 2 "points" (total of 6 possible points)
Follow each of the hosts on Twitter (@allsoulspod; @daemonsdomain; @allsoulscom) for 2 "points" (total of 6 possible points)
Tweet about the giveaway for an additional "point." (You may tweet once/day for an additional "point.")
( uses the term "point" for "entry.")
The winner will be announced within 24 hours of the close of the giveaway.
Good luck!

Disclaimer: This giveaway is in no way affiliated with Penguin Books.

Friday, June 19, 2015

The result of "Feeding our Daemons"!

Welcome to the world, Daemons Domain!  And visitors, we welcome you here — a place that began with a belief, that turned into a thought, that turned into an action, that turned into a habit, that turned into this website (thank you, Ghandi)—now it's something tangible...well, as tangible as a digital space can be!

We've been online promoting the All Souls Trilogy for more than a two and a half years now, and we realized that eventually we're going to have to choose a direction in our road and stick with it.  Our initial path has an inevitable ending.  Either way it goes (yes/no), this won't be able to go the distance! Oh, don't worry fans of the mission! We will continue with that crusade until it's natural end. When we sat down and thought about our online existence however, we realized our true love in all of this has always been the story!  The All Souls Trilogy was our first love/obsession, so we figured it was time to unabashedly dive into it like we tend to do anyway!  We are still working on our other social media spaces for this site, and we will update you as we move forward. We are working on some really amazing things for fans of this series.  Lucky for us, we have met some other great people in the fandom who have agreed to collaborate with us on one of them!  We thank All Souls Pod + All Souls Con for agreeing to it!  Summer solstice, here we come! 

Our goal here is to keep an eye on the AST world, bring you news of the series + upcoming production, share what we've learned while discussing these books, have some fun, and spread some whimsy!

An example of what we consider "whimsy!"

We watch/report what goes on in this world anyway, so we may as well share it with everyone else!  Oh, and we will geek out occasionally.  If you are nerds like us, you'll probably appreciate it!  If not, you can skip to the next post when we go back to the fun and whimsy part!  :)

About the layout and design of Daemons Domain.

This design was a very interesting project.  We all decided we wanted it to look and feel like a mixture of "decayed beauty" and something out of a Tim Burton film!  We came up with this, and as it is with most creative endeavors, we didn't know what we'd end up with until we were done.  We are quite pleased on how it turned out!

Daemons were once regarded as angels (thus the clouds and the feel of a heaven-like space), and in AST they are portrayed as creative, obsessive about music, theatre, art, and design.  They are often brilliant and are said to skirt the line of madness and genius.  Many creatures in the series think of them as insane!

Based on how we think of ourselves (insane, most days!), you can easily see why we would gladly embrace the 'daemon' moniker!

When we say "Feed Your Daemons," we don't mean feed us!  We think everyone has a bit of daemon inside...we are actually suggesting that you should occasionally abandon what's expected and 'normal'.  We are encouraging you to give in to the indulgence — wander into to the world of madness that allows one to create, think, imagine, and explore different ideas and concepts freely.

We used elements from the following alchemical pictures:

Kircher's Moon Phases
As you can see, we also used pieces from the following abandoned theatres - the neglected beauty is breathtaking:

On that note,
feed your daemons...

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Remember the Past, Await the Future - Pt 3

What a great week this has been so far! Let's cut right to it:


Our giveaway ended on June 8th.  Angela Lent was our lucky winner!  She will receive an All Souls Trilogy themed prize pack that includes the paperback edition of The Book of Life, a signed copy of Diana’s commonplace book, an ouroboros mirror and six alchemical buttons.  Congratulations, Angela, and thank you for your long-time support!

AllSoulsCon is offering a bounty of great prizes!  That elusive board game, though! #DaemonSquee

AllSoulsCon is currently hosting 'The Book of Life Theories' Giveaway!
Enter their contest by sharing your 'Ashmole 782 creation theory' for a chance to win one of three prize packages (see above)!  The contest starts June 8 and ends at midnight on June 20, 2015 PDT.  Open to everyone worldwide.  For more information and to enter, visit

Deb Harkness Interviews, Articles

Penguin Random House
This article includes an excerpt from The Book of Life, Q&A, Author Essay and more.

Reddit Q&A
Just like the All Souls Trilogy, whether you read this Q&A for the first time or as a re-read, there is plenty of intriguing and valuable information to comb through.

Deborah Harkness On Writing The Best Selling All Souls Trilogy

As always, you can find some of these articles archived in our downloads library in .PDF format.

Tour Information:

Midwest or Bust!

Once again, we are picking up where we left off on Deb's book tour. We were fortunate enough to have more eyes and ears at some of Deb’s 'The Book of Life' events. Those contributions have made these reports that much more fun to do. Thanks go out to our own, Angela Hutter and long-time supporter and friend, Lisa Stafko!

June 5th
Deb visited Crooked Tree Arts Center in Petoskey, Michigan.

Posted by Deb Harkness on Twitter

June 7th
On to Anderson's book shop in Naperville, Illinois. Thanks again to Lisa and Angela for their reports on the event experience!

From Lisa:

Deborah Harkness is the best!  If you get the chance to attend an event, you have to be there. She talks about the story, the process, shares her ideas and  answers questions. She reads a passage to you from the book. When it comes time to sign books, she talks with each person and poses for pictures. She is very generous with her time, and you never feel rushed. Very enjoyable event and worth every moment spent. 

Deb, Lisa, and Lisa's daughter!
From Angela:

   A book signing with Deb is always a pleasure.  It was especially interesting to go Anderson’s Bookshop in Naperville, IL as they were one of the first bookshops that hosted Deb while promoting A Discovery of Witches when the paperback was released way back when.  One of the co-owners, Becky
Angela and Deb!
Anderson, LOVED ADOW so much that she helped start the buzz about the All Souls Trilogy. Deb said that the stop was special as it brought her full circle with the conclusion of the trilogy and The Book of Life paperback returning to Anderson’s.
   Deb greeted the standing room only crowd, thanked Anderson’s Bookshop and dove right into recapping the three main characters of the All Souls Trilogy:  Diana Bishop, Matthew Clairmont and Ashmole 782 (no, not Gallowglass and not even Philippe).  She described them as an nontraditional love triangle – definitely a three-way relationship among them.
   She highlighted a fact about historians and characters that transcend time periods:  "You never want to let a historian at something or someone who could have memory that extends beyond 1500 years."  With all of the time with which Deb had to play, we were never going to see a 70 year-old vampire from her.  She enjoyed writing Matthew, a main character, who experienced long swaths of history, extending far back in time.  She said that we may have fallen in love with Matthew Clairmont because he’s dashing, handsome and charming (yes, yes, and yes!), but she fell in love with Matthew because he was an eyewitness to so much history that she finds fascinating (also yes!).
   The scope of the each book was examined so that we could see the progression of Matthew and Diana’s relationship.  In A Discovery of Witches, the scope is very limited.  Except for an unfortunate visit to the garden and a walk through the forest, Diana and Matthew spend most of their time together indoors.  In Shadow of Night, Diana and Matthew begin to go beyond themselves, meeting friends and family.  In The Book of Life, Diana and Matthew become the focal point or center of a family unit.
   Deb read the first chapter of The Book of Life but brought us back to the point of “Endings. Beginnings. Change.”  She emphasized that we have been going through that cycle with the characters since 2011. And in reality, Deb’s life is all about endings, beginnings and change – constantly.  To illustrate her point, she noted that she turned in grades on May 19 and hit the road on May 24 to start the US book tour. 
   Like a mind reader, she answered the unspoken question:  How does she juggle being a historian, professor, author, etc.?  She said that she’s not superman where she goes into a phone box and puts on a cape and comes out an author.  Nor does she go back in and put on a tweed jacket to become Professor Harkness.  Those roles in her life are completely interconnected and inextricably linked and woven together parts of who she is.  I guess you can call her a weaver in her own right!
   Deb describes herself as a being in the business of professional storytelling -  whether she is a historian or novelist.  As a historian she believes the past is meaningful and relevant to the future.  As a teacher she stands at the podium, wags her teacher finger at you and tells you just that.  As a novelist, she says it’s her job to show you instead.  Thus, in part, the All Souls Trilogy is an attempt to show how important the past is to the decisions we make today.  In the case of Diana and Matthew, it was crucial that they go back to the past to learn about themselves.  There were things they had to learn about themselves that could only be learned in the past.  Therefore, time walking is not a gimmick plot twist.  It was necessary and important to Deb the novelist and historian.
   It was explained that as a teacher, she wants her students to make discoveries on their own.  She doesn’t tell them answers.  As a novelist, she carried that practice over to her books with “pots of gold” or Easter Eggs. (Easter Eggs are little hidden treasures within the books.  They are not crucial to the plot, but they compel the reader to look further into the person, place or thing to see if they are real or not and how they may or may not relate to the story.)  She said she made them deliberately difficult.  (We know!  How many times have you heard a fellow reader say “Every time I read the All Souls Trilogy, I catch something or I learn something new.”?  That is her hope.  It makes her teacher heart happy!)
   Among the many hats that Deb wears are teacher, historian and researcher.  Because of that, the trilogy that is written also demonstrates her love of all of those things, as well as her love for libraries and the preserving and archiving of books.  She says a book can change the world.   After reading the All Souls Trilogy, I would have to agree.

On that note, it was time for audience Q&A:

Q:    When does Gallowglass know what his feelings are for Diana? 
A:    Gallowglass has a lot of self-knowledge.  There is not a moment when Gallowglass does not know what’s going on in his world.  That’s what makes him so appealing.  He has an incredible ability to face truths.

Q:    Can we assume that Deb will write in the same genre? 
A:    No. 

Q:    On Facebook, are the Diana and Matthew profiles run by Deb and her group?
A:    First, Deb said she doesn’t really have a group other than her assistant, Jill, but the answer is YES.    She created the profiles because she didn’t want anyone else to be those people.  She started them and bought related domains two years before A Discovery of Witches even came out.  She not is comfortable with anyone pretending to be her, Diana, Matthew, etc.

Q:     As far as editing, was there anything that was cut that Deb didn’t want to be cut?
A:    A few extra words were edited, but nothing to the story structurally was cut.  On a side note, she did say that it was difficult to start The Book of Life.  She said that after Shadow of Night, it was like trying to launch a 747 with a rubber band.   Deb’s first instinct would have been to start right off with Diana, but it would not have been satisfying to have Diana return to Sept-Tours on the first pages and immediately be confronted with bad news.

Q:     So many love her Spotify lists.  How does she utilize them?
A:    Deb writes to music and when each paperback is published, she releases her lists.  When she’s brainstorming the details of the plot, she may take inspiration from a song or alternatively, if she is writing, she may think of a song and put it in the playlist.  She stressed that she listens to music all of the time.  She doesn’t outline.  Instead, she arranges the playlists before she even starts to write.  Music also helps her reconnect with her writing when she’s taken a break from it for long or short periods of time.  If she knows what music she has playing for that chapter, she will put it on a loop.  It will take her right back to the emotions that she’s trying to tap into.  It’s also helpful to have the other character playlists to know what they like, dislike and feel since she writes from Diana’s POV so frequently.

Q:  Does she have conversations with her secondary characters – dead or alive. 
A:  Yes!  She says she does have conversations with them.  The characters are so integrated into her life that for example, she can walk around Anderson’s Bookshop and know exactly what Baldwin would be reading.  Another example is of Deb hearing Godfrey calling out to his mate.  Because of that, she now knows his mate’s name when she didn’t before.

   At the conclusion of the Q&A, there was a raffle for fun All Souls Trilogy prizes.  I bring that up because - Fun fact:  Look for board game giveaways on Deb’s various social media platforms later this year!  (Note: Once they give any prize away for a promotion, by law, they cannot sell it.  So, no, the board games will not be on sale any time soon.)
   As with other signings Deb greeted and took pictures with readers, signed books, met family members who tagged along to the event and of course, answered more individual questions. She spent plenty of time with each person and puts all of her attention on you in your moment.  She is a woman of grace and humor - not too mention a lot of information!
   And now, I have an Easter Egg to crack.  Earlier this week in the Reddit Q&A, I asked for a wee bit more information on particular passage.  She replied that she has given us all the hints she’s going to give us (which is just the text in the book).  Ahhh, Deb, you are ever the perpetual teacher -- letting us make our own discoveries.  I appreciate and adore you for that.  Safe travels always in all of your literal and figurative journeys.

June 9th
Deb visited Central Unser Public Library, Albuquerque, NM

Posted by Deb Harkness

Posted by ABC Library


Reminder on Deb’s book signing tips: 

•  Please check her EVENTS feed on Facebook for complete event information, including signing line policies and ticket buy links (if they have them).

•  She recommends always checking back with the venue to make sure your pre-orders are set (if you made them). This is especially vital if you want to order the new paperback boxed set of the trilogy (on sale now), the hardback boxed set of the trilogy (with commonplace book included), or hardbacks of ADOW or SON. They will have these items on hand in limited supply.

Here's what's left on the tour...
June 14 – 3:00 pm
Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park, Washington
July 8 – 7:00 pm
Pages: a bookstore, Manhattan Beach, California
For more information, see Deb's FB announcement
Keep an eye on Deb's event calendar for detail updates on this rescheduled event.

As always, to see any additional details Deb has added to any of the events we posted, please visit her Event page on Facebook.

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