Judi Fennell Guest Blog and Giveaway!

Thanks so much for having me and at such an auspicious time of year for us paranormal authors. It's kind of guaranteed that we're fans of Halloween. I am—especially since I made my own medieval costume a few years ago, and a matching one for my husband: Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn. Depending on my mood that year, my Anne may or may not have a thin line of (fake) blood going across her neck.
But in writing my Mer series, I never tackled the idea of Halloween. I use mythology and legend, and pop culture references, twisting them to fit my story and build the world, but I never really touch on holidays.
I figured now was as good a time as any. The following is a totally original, for-this-blog-posting Halloween Ball scene from the point of view of Doria and Andrea, sisters of the Challenger to the Throne (and, sadly for them, not especially bright ones) in the second book in my Mer series, Wild Blue Under, out November 1.
Still living at home with their parents in Atlantis which is located under the island of Bermuda, (yes, under; they are, after all, Mers), they wouldn't mind finding a way to catch the eye of Rod Tritone, heir to the Mer throne, and move into his palace. In this scene, reminiscent of the pre-ball preparations by Cinderella's ugly stepsisters, Andrea and Doria try their best to catch the prince's attention--and keep each other from doing so at the same time…
"So what are you going to be for the Halloween ball this year, Doria?" Andrea fingered the white feather boa she'd bought at the Salvager's Market that morning as part of her costume for the annual royal costume ball, but, Hades! Dozens of feathers floated away with each stroke. Stupid Salvager had ripped her off. Now what was she going to do? The costume had to be perfect.
"I'm not telling you, Andrea." Doria shut the door of her closet with a quick whoosh of water--which had the helpful effect of drifting her sequined crop pants out of the closet.
"Pink? You're wearing pink?" Andrea didn't bother hiding her laughter. Nor her disbelief. "You look awful in pink."
Doria flicked her hair over her shoulder--where it didn't stay, thanks to the current that wended through downtown Atlantis. "I do not. Pink is one of my best colors."
Yeah, if she wanted to look like chum and attract all the barracuda…
Andrea kept her trap shut. Good. Let Doria look like a clownfish. That would pave the way for her once The Heir saw her in her diaphanous white princess gown--just what Rod would make her if he chose her to marry.
But she had to find out who Doria was going as. After all, they couldn't go as the same person, and it was possible the famous Human actress she was going as had done a movie dressed as a matador.
"Were those pants I saw? How do you plan to pull that off, Dor, since the ball is under water, where, unless you're a second son, you can't have legs?"
"None of your business, Andi. So what are you going as?" Doria picked a sequin off her orange tail.
Pink against that color was as cringe-worthy as the nickname Doria insisted on giving her.
"You don't know who you're going as, do you?" Andrea was determined to find out. Nothing was going to get in the way of Rod asking her to dance. She'd chosen her costume carefully. Everyone knew there was only one Human more famous than Jacques Cousteau in Atlantis and dressed as her, The Heir was sure to notice her.
"You're going as a movie star, aren't you?"
Doria turned a shade of green that would really make the pink and orange look nasty. "We don't have movies."
Dammit. She was right. "Oh, right. You're going to tread water there and tell me you never floated on the surface and watched the movies Humans see on those cruise ships."
"I didn't--" Doria spun around. And spun and spun…
Andrea would have thought, after thirty selinos, her sister would get the swirling-water phenomenon.
"How'd you figure it out?" Doria asked in that timid voice that she thought men loved, but, really, made them squirm like a worm on a hook--and in their world, that was a very bad thing.
Again, not something she would share with her sister. She needed every advantage she could get tonight. "How'd I figure what out?"
"My costume."
Okay, Andrea had to play smart here. Her brother would say that was tough to do, but she wasn't as dumb as he thought. So there.
Doria on the other fin…
Movie star, cruise ship, pink matador pants--
"You're going as Penelope Cruz."
Doria tossed her head back. "So what if I am?"
"Nothing." Andrea did a somersault over to her vanity table, biting her lip to keep the smile off her face.
Ever since Penelope had dumped that other Human named Cruise, she'd fallen out of favor in Atlantis. The woman Andrea had chosen to go as, however, would never go out of favor.
She couldn't. Her very name demanded she live in Atlantians' collective memory forever.
Ethel Merman.
© Judi Fennell, 2009
Okay, I had a blast revisiting these two "water-heads," as their brother Drake had called them, and I had even more of a blast figuring out who they would dress as for the ball.
So who (what) are you going to be for Halloween?
And please stop by my website, www.JudiFennell.com to register to win one of two remaining Romantic Beach Getaway Weekends to celebrate the release of the Mer series books. The next drawing is November 30 at the Atlantis Inn in Ocean City, NJ (www.AtlantisInn.com), and the final drawing is February 28, 2010 for the Hibiscus House in West Palm Beach, FL (www.HibiscusHouse.com).
WILD BLUE UNDER—book 2 in the Mer Series—in stores November 2009!
The underwater kingdom is his as soon as he claims his queen…
Rod Tritone has the looks and charm to snag any queen he wants for his Mer kingdom, but unfortunately, it's not up to him. As fate would have it, the one woman destined to rule with him is terrified of water…
She lives in land-locked Kansas and has no idea she's a princess…
Valerie Dumere thinks Rod is gorgeous and irresistible—but why does he keep insisting she has another side to herself that only he can show her?
Somehow, Rod has to prove to her who she really is. But when she finds out the truth, will she ever forgive him?

About the Author


Judi Fennell is an award-winning author. Her romance novels have been finalists in Gather.com's First Chapters and First Chapters Romance contests, as well as the third American Title contest. She spends family vacations at the Jersey Shore, the setting for some of her paranormal romance series. She lives in suburban Philadelphia, PA.

Let's give Judi Fennell a HUGE thank you for coming and being a part of my blog! I seriously enjoyed reading about the Halloween Ball, didn't you?

With a HUGE thank you to Danielle at Sourcebooks, I am able to offer to you a chance to win the first two books in Judi Fennell's trilogy, In Over Her Head and Wild Blue Under. As you may or may not remember, I was able to read and review Wild Blue Under and fell head over heels for this series! I am sure you will too!
Here's the rules: Canada or USA only.

To enter answer this question: Answer Judi's Question: So who (what) are you going to be for Halloween? Myself, I am not dressing up, but my daughter is going to be a purple fairy

Good luck! and the contest ends on November 15th! Please note all winners are chosen via Random.org, I will NOT alert the winner, the winner must contact me when I announce the winner on a post here in my blog. I highly suggest following my blog OR having a google alert for your user name!

Just for today only, I have turned off comment moderation as I will not be around much today and I would love for you all to be able to interact without waiting for comment approval! Have lots of fun! This is going to be so much fun to read later!


  1. Good morning! Can't wait to see the answers to your question, Jaime! Thanks, again, for having me. And Andrea & Doria, too, of course!

  2. Hi Judi!

    It's definitely a pleasure to have you be a part of my blog today! And of course, Andrea and Doria! What a great post, by the way! I can't wait to read the answers today, too!

  3. What fun, Judi! Your water-heads made me laugh.

    I won't be wearing a Halloween costume this year. Instead I'll be all dressed up for my parents' 50th anniversary. Yes, they got married on Halloween. And no, they didn't dress in costume.

  4. Keena, you could have stopped at "I won't be wearing a Halloween costume this year" and we all would have smiled and shook our heads. "Ah, Lady Godiva..."

    Happy anniversary to your parents!

  5. I am so excited for the 2nd book to come out. This year I am being a referee for Halloween. So I can call the shots.

  6. I am going as a pirate wench. Actually going to a big party.

  7. Judi,

    Could you post a link to your blog? I think I am a follower, but not sure.

    Also, dark backgrounds are extremely difficult to read for people with strong prescription glasses (moi.)

  8. Caito45 - I like that costume, and particularly the reason behind it! Make sure you have a nice shrill whistle!

    Kathryn - gotta love those pirate wenches! Maybe you'll run into Cap'n Jack - if he looks like Johnny Depp I'd take a walk off the plank with him anytime to check out his treasure trove...

    My blog: www.JudiFennell.wordpress.com.

  9. I am wearing an exterminator hat as I walk alongside my daughter (age 8) who is dressing up as a cute little mouse caught in a mousetrap costume. Congrats on your book Judi I loved the first one!

  10. Thanks, Kimber. And I love your costume - you'll have to remind your daughter when she's a teenager and being a "teenager" that you could have exterminated her when she was 8 but chose not to. She's gonna owe you big time! LOL

  11. Hi, Judi!
    Loved the scene you wrote for these two; it's hysterical.
    Hallowe'en for me is a little like Superman dressing up as Clark Kent. I'm a white witch, so Hallowe'en is the only time my neighbors get to see the "real" me!

  12. I'm going as a ghostly cavalier!

    Loved the excerpt, Judi! I can tell I"m gonna love this book as much as the first!

  13. Thanks for stopping by, ladies!

    It was fun to give Andrea & Doria a scene of their own. Poor things just won't ever merit a book, I fear. Love the costumes!

  14. Not dressing up but daughter will be a panda!


  15. I'm actually not dressing up this year..

    kalynnick AT yahoo DOT com

  16. going to dress up as a vampire. I usually hardly ever dress up.

    aprilmom00 at gmail dot com

  17. I stopped dressing up until the year we were going to a costume party and decided instead of spending a fortune to rent costumes, I spend a fortune and make them. Hence, Anne and Henry were born. Now it's such a fun costume to wear, that I bring it out every year. Although, with going to RT every year and needing costumes for that, I now have quite the selection. I find second-hand shops have great deals on gowns so it doesn't matter that much when you alter them.

  18. I am going to be Little Red Riding Hood

    throuthehaze at gmail dot com

  19. Great excerpt, Judi. I'm curious about what others at the ball will be dressed as. Someone as Daryl Hannah, perhaps?

    Thanks for sharing this with us, Jaime.

  20. I'm going to a birthday party, and I will be as vampy as vampy can be.


  21. Hi Judi.

    Loved reading about the Halloween Ball. This year my 10yo is going as a mouse. The costume was made by my Mom 28 years ago for my sister. Still looks fantastic. It is fun to see my kids use something that my Mom created for one of use when were kids.

    I have not read any of youe books. If the Halloween Ball is any indication then I am sure that I will enjoying reading the Mer Series. I look forward to the read.

    Best wishes on your upcoming book release.

    Jamie - this was a fun post. Thanks for hosting Judie.

  22. Ooops... Sorry Jaime. I mispelled your name even when I knew the "i" came after "a".
    Again, sorry.

  23. LOL The Halloween Ball story was terrific!

    I'm not dressing up for Halloween this year. My son is going to be Thomas the Tank Engine, and my daughter is a Barbie cheerleader. That's not what I would have picked for them, but that's what we ended up with when I let them choose.

  24. Hi Jaime!

    Thanks for the great giveaway I've been wanting to read this series for awhile now!

    I enjoyed reading about the Halloween Ball, Judi! I can't wait for your new release next year!

    I haven't dressed up for Halloween for a long time now but if I was I would go as Cleopatra!

  25. Thanks for stopping by everyone. Razlover's book blog... nice avatar! :)

  26. I'm think I'm going to dress as something super scary this year - a crazed writer on a short deadline whose computer shutdown because of a virus.

    Oh wait, that's me! :)

  27. Sorry, forgot e-mail.

    karla (at) klbradywrites (dot) com

  28. I'm dressing as zombie food. Hopefully I have enough brains to be more than a light snack. ;) Yes, you may groan now.

  29. oh, ewwwwwwwww K.L.! That's awful!

  30. Not dressing up this year but I am helping a friend with her son's costume he is going to be a Ghost Buster

  31. While I am not dressing up my DH is going to his office as Fred Flinstone.

  32. I am not dressing up for Halloween and my children are now adults. I do enjoy a great book though!1 Thanks for the chance to win a great read!

    khzarrugh (at) gmail (dot) com

  33. Great post.I heard great things about the first book.I look forward to reading this series.

    For Halloween I;m not dressing up, just handing out the candy to all the ghosts and goblins :)

  34. Thanks, everyone, for stopping by!

  35. My husband and I dressed as a viking couple, complete with wigs and battle axes. We had a lot of fun!
    I bet your Anne & Henry VIII costumes are awesome. Good idea, maybe next year. :)

  36. Hi. I was a French Maid for Halloween. I have to admit that it's a costume I've used on Halloween before but when I lived in another city. Because I am a Generously proportioned person it is actually quite comical. polo-puppy-fluffyAThotmail *dot* com I would love to read these books. Please count me in.

  37. We didn't dress up this year, but it makes me think of one of the Adams Family movies --- where they ask Tuesday what she is dressed up as --- Her answer was " A homicidal maniac - they look like everyone else". So for Halloween --- I was a homicidal maniac.

  38. I didnt dress up but my daughter was a vampire & my son was a banana, my other son was a gorilla...my older boys didnt dress up

  39. Golly, I have been waiting for book 2 from Judi! I loved book 1!!! I am so pumped!

    Halloween I went as a bride and my 2 little kids went as iPods. Then I came home and changed and went to an adult party as a sexy maid (as in housekeeper)

    Actually I loved book 1 so much I have not let anyone borrow if fearing they would not return it or get cappuccino on it's pages or cover so winning this would be just delightful as I'd have one (Book 1) to loan out.

    rubymoonstone at gmail dot com

  40. We dont do Halloween in Sri Lanka though this year I saw cakes in a pastry shop with fondant pumpkins and a witches face! This must be for expatriates as no one else will know the significance of this. However, I love to read how much Americans celebrate the seasons, the change of weather, trees, Halloween and Thanksgiving and Christmas. We are multi cultural as well but the celebrations seem to be more muted than you do. Its lovely to read and look at photographs though.


  41. I didnt dress up for Halloween this year. I stayed home and gave out candy to all the kiddies.


  42. Had I dressed up for Halloween, I would have been She-ra!

    mabelilly28 at yahoo dot com

  43. I didn't dress up, but my daughter was a princess and my son was a lion...they had a blast:) This book sounds great! Thanks!

    christinbanda AT yahoo DOT com

  44. I didn't dress up this year. We actually spent Halloween day travelling to Disney.

    lizzi0915 at aol dot com

  45. I didn't dress up and don't usually. But one year my Dad and stepmom dressed as King Neptune and a mermaid!
    Thanks for a chance to win!


Thank you so much for saying hello! I love your comments.