Tag Archives: may queen

The Treachery of Beautiful Things Exclusive

The Treachery of Beautiful Things comes out on the 16th August, 2012. Which, as some people have pointed out, is a very long time to go. 168 days according to Book Depository! I’d be hard pressed to wait that long.


(We revealed it at the YALitChat livechat last night, but just in case you missed it.)

I’ve got an exclusive peek into the book right here on my website – the prologue and first two Chapters of TTOBT all there for you to read right now. Just click the link here, or use the menu above.  I’ll add more features to the section as time passes so check back every so often. Hope you enjoy it.


TTOBT Livechat

Just a quick headsup to let people know that I’ll be doing a twitter live chat with YALitChat tomorrow at 3pm EST (which is handily 8pm GMT over here). I’ll be talking about The Treachery of Beautiful Things and we’ll also be having a give away. There may even be a surprise (fingers crossed). So look out of the #yalitchat hastag on twitter tomorrow afternoon/evening.

And YALitChat will continue on into the evening/middle of the night when at 9pm EST (which… no, I don’t want to think about what time that is over here — I will be snoring, sorry!) many many more 2012 debut authors will be having another chat.

  • Brigid Kemmerer author of  Elemental
  • Nina Berry author of  Otherkin
  • Kate Walton author of  Cracked
  • Suzanne Lazear author of  Innoent Darkness
  • Jessica Shirvington author of Embrace
  • Elisa Ludwig author of Pretty Crooked
  • Jolene Perry author of Night Sky and Knee Deep
  • Lori Ann Duffy author of Spectral
  • Rachael Harris author of My Super Sweet Sixteenth Century
  • Tiffany Schmidt author of Send me A Sign

But at 3pm/8pm it’s all me and Treachery (which is occassionally called #TTOBT).

More on the hopedfor surprise as soon as I can!

Busy busy busy

Still in the writing cave. Peering out from time to time with at confused, “there’s a world out there” blinking gaze.

I’m a bit over half way through draft zero having got lots done this Sunday thanks to a rugby game which entertained everyone in the house, except for the last five minutes when they hid behind furniture, shouted & threw things*

But this is a small update to let you know that The Treachery of Beautiful Things is now available on Netgalley. There are criteria with regards to getting a review copy however, and not that many available. But still its a very big YAY from me. I hope everyone enjoys it.

There is also a review on goodreads from someone who had one of the print ARCs. This also gets a very big YAY from me.

Oh, and on Friday I will be at the Pen Dinner which is very exciting. Because Joseph O’Connor is getting the award from the President. Of Ireland. SO for most of the rest of the week I will be tackling girlie things like hair and dresses and high heels.

*Retreats. Blinking.*


*not really… or at least not much

Proofs–it exists!

It’s almost a real book! I now have 5 whole copies to play with. Most of them are spoken for, alas.

But they are sooooo pretty. I believe that copies may be available for review from the Penguin Young Readers group though, but I can’t swear to that.

This is the official bit:

If you would like to request a copy of THE TREACHERY OF BEAUTIFUL THINGS to review on your blog, email Penguin Young Readers Group at yrmarketing (at) us.penguingroup (dot) com. Be sure to include your name, the name and URL of your blog, an address to which a possible review copy can be sent, plus any statistics and/or sample reviews. Please understand that galley quantities are limited and that not all requests can be filled.

A May Tree in November

The May Tree, or Hawthorn, or the Fairy Tree features in my novel THE TREACHERY OF BEAUTIFUL THINGS. The tradition is to tie a rag or ribbon to the tree and make a wish. It’s a gnarled, thorny little tree, with the most beautiful white flowers in springtime and bright red berries in autumn. It is the Thorn in the saying Oak, Ash and Thorn, and grows in the most exposed areas, clinging to the sides of hills and the rocky earth.

We’ve been away for a couple of days, back to Ashford Castle in Mayo. I’ll have more photos and a post about it soon.

On the way back, we stopped off at Loughcrew, or Slieve na Cailleach (your spelling may vary). Slieve na Cailleach means Mountain of the Witch and is topped by a stone cairn called The Hag’s Cairn, which is about 6000 years old. It’s a fantastic place, really atmospheric and not a little creepy. I’ll have more on that too, including some compass related weirdness. But for this morning, here’s a photo I took on the way up there.

It’s a May Tree in November, with it’s rags and ribbons clearly displayed to the world as offerings to the fairies and the wishes of mankind. We added our own. I sort of felt I had to.May Tree in November 🙂


Cover LOVE–first look

Just a quick but vital interruption in our scheduled blogging to reveal an almost exclusive thing of wonder.

*dances around, throws confetti, dances some more*


Because I can at last share the beautiful cover for The Treachery of Beautiful Things.* And it’s not just beautiful.

It’s SO EXCITING. *throws more confetti*

Isn't it AWESOME???

It’s so perfect I can’t believe it. It’s Jenny as the May Queen and I can’t stop adoring it.

To differentiate between my adult and YA writing, we decided to publish The Treachery of Beautiful Things under the name Ruth Frances Long. It’s available for Pre-order from Book Depository and Amazon.

Thanks to my wonderful editor and the fantabulous art department at Dial.


*pets cover*

*hugs cover*

Normal service will be returned when I calm down a bit! (It might take a while)



*Ok, so people on my mailing list saw it oooh five minutes ago.

The Treachery of Beautiful Things

So a few bits of exciting news in the last little while.

1) May Queen has a new title – The Treachery of Beautiful Things – which I absolutely love. So evocative.

2) It also has a release date (16th August 2012). Yes it’s 400 days away, but you know what? It’s a date. I’m going to have a -1 year birthday party for it while on holidays! 😀

3) It has an ISBN 9780803735804 This means SO MUCH to a librarian.

4) It’s available for pre-order.

5) And it almost has a cover! It’s SO gorgeous. Beautiful! But I can’t share it just yet as it isn’t final. But as soon as I can, I will.

So news! At last!

Oh the edits

It was admittedly a tight deadline, but the edits on May Queen (which may not be called May Queen anymore) went back on Sunday evening with Monday to spare. At the moment I’m mainly in recovery mode and looking forward to a bit of a break. And more edits, this time for Graffiti Angel (which may not be called Graffiti Angel anymore).

It’s funny how stories change, sometimes as you write them and sometimes during the course of the editing process. That’s the point of it, of course. To make it a stronger story, to make it better, shinier, to smooth out the rough bits or lop them off entirely if that’s what it takes.

I’ve mentioned before how much I love editing. I get completely absorbed by it. I was asked recently (while waffling away on Twitter as usual) about my editing process and maybe could I do a post on it. And I may–but not this post. I’m in the post-edit phase, where I’m physically and mentally exhausted. I have a massage booked for Thursday because the muscles in my neck and shoulders have tightened into something like wires and can’t seem to remember what relaxing is any more.

And yet, knowing that there are another batch of edits sitting there, waiting to be done, another book world to jump into and play with, it’s sooooooo tempting right now. Looking at them, just lurking in my inbox. They don’t have a deadline so I can take as long as I like to do them, and wait as long as I want until I start them. Before my agent freaks, that’s not going to happen, because that story is calling away to me and I know for a fact I won’t resist very long. (In fact I did the line edits last night… er… yeah, so much for taking a break…)

But this is part of why I love writing. Stories are magic. They pull you in, they absorb you in another world, and they can be really hard to shake off. As my mind is in an editing zone right now, it wants to edit. Simple as that. But right now I need a bit of a recharge and a chance to think about what needs to be done.

Yes, definitely need to do that post on editing process. Although I’m a little concerned about exposing to the world just how crazy I can be.


And the newsletter: the problem with newsletters right at the mo is there’s not much news – just me being editing-crazy. But I’ll have it out later today. Just be forewarned about the crazy, right? 🙂

Fairytales in fiction

Claire Hennesy has a thought provoking post up today about Retellings, where writers take well known and established stories like fairytales and folklore and use them as a base for their own stories, building on them, changing their slant or reworking them into something new. I started to reply there, but given the fact that I LOVE this subject, my reply started to get long, which is a little unfair on someone else’s blog. So I thought I’d put it here instead. You should of course read Claire’s post first! (but be warned, I now have MORE books to add to my neverending TBR pile).

For me, it seems to work the other way. Quite often I start out telling my own story and find that the fairy tale or mythic elements bleed through as the characters take on those ghostly archetypes that linger in the background of our cultural life. They are still my stories, my characters, still in their own stories but rather than deliberately drawing on archetypes I find they filter into the story in a subtle way (a hopefully subtle way). Because those fairytales are powerful things. They’re beguiling and whimsical. On the surface. But then you go deeper. And deeper. They tell raw and compelling stories when you whittle them down to their purest form. They have darker versions of themselves hidden away in the shadows behind our polished up 21st century versions.

So if I show you an image of a single glass slipper on a staircase, your mind fills in the rest and you go Ah-HA! If there’s blood on the slipper, or if the slipper shatters into a million pieces, your mind is both startled and intrigued. How has the story been changed? Or has it? Is there some older, darker version you haven’t heard before.

I think it’s part of the way writers often feel that stories tell themselves. That they run away with us clinging on for dear life via the pen.

So in my case a fantasy quest novel takes on elements of folklore and fairytales harking back to those older legends and the place of blood and sacrifice they came from. Or an urban fantasy set in modern day Dublin becomes a reimagining of the Percival legend with Celtic overtones and a heroine skirting to the wrong side of divine law.

Myths and folktales lend resonance to our stories and give a sense of a far deeper pool of storytelling behind them. It’s an exciting and abundant area in which to play.