New Release! into shadow: a poetic exploration of personal fears

Written by Monica Valentinelli, into shadow: a poetic exploration of personal fears is the author’s debut collection of twenty-one poems.

The collection’s theme is broken into three books inspired by parts of the shadow: the umbra, penumbra, and antumbra. The fears presented run the gamut between surface-deep and existential. As such, some readers may be uncomfortable with light swearing and unsettling imagery. In book one: umbra, twenty-one original poems expose the author’s shadow. Notes and references for each poem follows in book two: penumbra, naming her fears and how she tackled them. Lastly, in book three: antumbra, the original drafts of each poem—including improper punctuation and sloppy word choices—are reprinted in their entirety, extending well beyond the umbra.

into shadow: a poetic exploration of personal fears is currently available in multiple digital formats.

Smashwords: (epub, mobi, pdf, lrf, pdb, txt, html)

DriveThruFiction: (epub, pdf)

If you’re new to DriveThruFiction, please note that purchasing a copy from that eTailer automatically grants you access to all additional formats and corrections uploaded for that title’s listing.

You can also find this collection at additional online booksellers, including Amazon and iStore, pending approvals required for broader distribution. Additional announcements may be forthcoming collating these new venues.

Funded on Patreon (@BooksOfM), into shadow: a poetic exploration of personal fears would not be possible without the support of Monica’s patrons and supporters.

Interviews and review copies are available upon request from the author.

Announcing a Patreon Exclusive! Into Shadow Coming Feb 2021

Into Shadow | An Exploration of Personal Fears | Poetry

In my newsletter recently, I described how my nightmares and anxiety caused by the violence in our nation’s capital affected my ability to write last week. I announced in that update I’m channeling these emotions to explore my fears in February. I’ll be writing a poem a day for a #28DaysofPoetry challenge.

This month-long project will be offered to my patreons through Patreon for $2. Yep, that’s right. $2 for 28 poems about my personal fears.

Why charge so little? Since launching my Patreon, I don’t feel I’ve done a very good job helping patrons feel vested in my work. Last year, my patrons helped fund a new web cam–something I desperately needed during the pandemic and am hugely grateful for. I’m hoping that the $2 price will help reassure patrons that their financial support is greatly valued.

In terms of “What am I going to do with this?” The answer is: “I don’t know.” This idea is new, raw, and will be a journey. It’s been a long, long time since I’ve written or studied poetry, and I’m not sure if any publishers would be interested in this type of collection. What’s more, now that I’ve been practicing mini-art pieces for #makedontbreak, my creative mind might shift to illustrating these too. I just don’t know.

I hope you’ll consider joining this project. If you are already a patron, please accept my enduring gratitude. I look forward to sharing my fears with you.

Announcing the Final List of Contributors and Tropes for Upside Down

Less than 48 hours to go, and I couldn’t be happier with the way the Upside Down: Inverted Tropes in Storytelling Kickstarter has gone. We have over 1,000 backers, and today I am happy to announce the final list of contributors. I’ve contacted everyone on the short list that I had contact info for, so if you do not have a response please let me know and I’ll be happy to follow up. Jaym and I are concerned about ensuring all of our authors are treated well; the caliber and quality of stories we received was nothing short of fantastic, and our decisions were very difficult to make.

Short Story & Poetry Contributors

Kat Richardson, Maurice Broaddus, Michael Underwood, Anton Strout, Shanna Germain, Ferrett Steinmetz, Haralambi Markov, Valya Dudycz Lupescu, Alyssa Wong, Nisi Shawl, Sunil Patel, Rahul Kanakia, Sara Harvey, John Hornor Jacobs, Delilah Dawson, Adam-Troy Castro, Alethea Kontis, Katy Harrad & Greg Stolze, Alisa Schreibman, Alex Shvartsman, Rati Mehrotra, Elsa S. Henry, Michelle Lyons-McFarland, Michael Choi, Michelle Muenzler, and Michael Matheson

Tropes Examined

Asian Scientist, Blind People are Magic, Chainmaille Bikini, Chosen One, Damsels in Distress, Epic Fantasy, First Period Panic, Gendericide, Girlfriend in the Refrigerator, Guys Smash, Girls Shoot, Heroine Loves a Bad Man, Jewish Magic, Love at First Sight, Manic Pixie Dream Girl, Prostitute with a Heart of Gold, Retired Pro’s “Last” Job, The Black Man Dies First, The City Planet, The Magical Negro, The Power of Names, The Singularity will Cause the Apocalypse, The Super Soldier, The Villain Had a Crappy Childhood, World Ends/Sets/Reboots, and Yellow Peril


Patrick Hester, Lucy Snyder, A.C. Wise, Victor Raymond, and Keffy Kehrli

Essay Topics

Are Tropes Bad?, an examination of Detta/Odetta from The Dark Tower series and how it relates to the gothic trope Jekyll and Hyde, the differences between the hero’s journey and the heroine’s journey using Labyrinth as an example, tropes from a queer (LGBTQA+) perspective, and the intersection of race and culture with respect to tropes and cliches.

Squirrels! For April Fool’s

Hey folks,

Just wanted to pop in and say that I wrote something fun for April Fool’s. Author Lilith Saintcrow, besieged by squirrel terror in her backyard, was the inspiration behind “The Squirrel.”

It starts with…

Once upon an evening dreary, while I pondered weak and weary,
How to script an ensuing volume for my readers galore,
While I nodded, nearly dozing, suddenly there came a scraping,
As of some one gently chafing, up against my screen porch door.
`’Tis my fuzzy feline,’ I muttered, ‘chafing at my screen porch door –
Only this, and nothing more. –From THE SQUIRREL by yours truly

…and gets crazier from there.

After you read Fish April and Squirrel Ballad in all its glory on Lilith Saintcrow’s website, be sure to catch up on Lili’s squirrel shenanigans in related posts. They are high-larious.

Oh, and don’t forget to check out one of Lilith Saintcrow’s many books or stories. Just sayin’. Shameless plug for another author! Hooray!

Happy Valentine’s Day! Enjoy Your Love Haikus!

two-heartsHappy Valentine’s Day! Today’s the day to celebrate all things love and I can’t think of a better way than to share with you the love poetry from Twitter.

Poetry is a great way to get those creative juices flowing, especially if you need to flex those “descriptive” muscles. Here are the love haikus from the event, and I hope you enjoy reading them no matter how you choose to celebrate Valentine’s Day. I linked to the Twitter profile of everyone who contributed as well, so if you’re on Twitter — be sure to check them out.

Enjoy Reading Love Haiku Poetry

@coffeesister careful consideration / opposing opinions offered / eros expressed

@coffeesister friendship found / communication deepens / love is born

@J_Dalgliesh blazing grass behind / they emerge from smoke and flame / handclasped and alive

@J_Dalgliesh brushed skin quivering / burning trails of wild desire / molten body yields

@J_Dalgliesh the back of his hand / gentle on her autumn cheek / their golden wedding

@kaliphonia My dear you’re the bomb / mushroom cloud of destiny / love’s a battlefield

@ldydisney Second time around – Deeper love, pure honest love – Love my Valentine

@debsoul Love ever present/Illusion washes away/Light filled brand new day

@bigbookofyou You are the pebble, In the Center of your life, The source of ripples (From the Big Book of You)

@kimfalconer Dark wings touch my face/ when a shadow flees the heart/ love has come at last

@carliepaiva The sweet lovers sigh / thumping hearts fill their ears / together as one

@coffeesister sun sparkles / hope joins in / heart warms

@mlvalentine Show a writer love / read a book today and smile / we love our readers

@madkane Love Haiku / St. Valentine’s Day— / One day each February? / No. Daily each year

@ielliott Come the day of rest // Saturday will have then passed // Did you show your love?

@tombedell Saturday, is it? // A day-long dip in the stream // Of raging currents

@music_notes fall in love again / music fills our hearts and minds / thanks to songwriters

@mlvalentine music of the spheres / angelic voices singing / faithful, loving hearts

@_justen_ crisp air, chilled wine / she is out with her best friend / this Valentine’s Day

@_justen_ so many roses, / candies, and expense to say: / I love you, baby

@slacey Noble tetanus // Oh where have your eyebrows gone? // Stolen by an attorney

@_justen_Oh powerful wind/ weathering worlds, lives, and hearts:/ terraforming love

@mlvalentine delicate, pale Spring / knocks Love’s door to awaken / slumbering lovers

@suburban_cat Crepe myrtle petals / Dance in the summer breeze as / Tears run down my cheeks

@mazzycat the familiar/comfortable feeling of/knowing each other

@mazzycat the sun in your eyes/a glance, a turning away/the slowest of smiles

Looking for Monica’s books and games that are still in print? Visit Monica Valentinelli on Amazon’s Author Central or a bookstore near you.


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