Hollywood After Dark: 3 Tales of Terror ~ An Excerpt

By Lisa Maliga

copyright 2013

hollywood after dark 3 tales of terror lisa maligaThis October, why not consider looking at some different horror books? More psychological than bloody, these three novelettes contained within the pages of Hollywood After Dark: 3 Tales of Terror, all take place in a certain area of Los Angeles. They also contain some fairly ambitious main characters. Available in both eBook and paperback formats. 138 pages.

The motivation for An Author’s Nightmare, a horror/chick lit tale, came about after reading some bragging posts on a forum about how successful a chick lit writer claimed she was. It gave me the idea for this dark story.

Here’s an excerpt:

That day I heard a radio in the laundry room as the grungy new tenant who worked at a vintage clothing store, always brought along her radio when she did her laundry. I overheard a news reporter describe the untimely death of a literary legend on Mulholland Drive in a freak accident early that morning. “Mega Best Seller Harvey Boston, author of the successful Legionnaire Series, apparently lost control of his Ferrari when it spun out of control and tumbled down an embankment to the bottom of a ravine near Mulholland and Coldwater Canyon.”

Staring at the computer screen open to a new, untitled document, I sat there and gazed upon it, as though willing a new manuscript into existence. I said, “I’d do anything to sell a book manuscript—anything. I’d even sell my soul!” I remember laughing about that, as I didn’t believe in anything as silly as that as there was no god and there was no devil.

And that’s when I noticed the weather icon went crazy the numbers turned red and went from 87 to 88 to 89 and kept getting higher and higher until they stopped at 105. The temperature in the room increased and I was ready to take off my shirt I was so hot and clammy. And that’s when the name came to me: Carlotta’s Cakery: Book 1 Magical Cakes of Love! Yes, that was it, my new book title and I knew how to bake and why the hell hadn’t I thought of that before? Seconds later I had the first line of my book: “My name is Carlotta Sue Carter and I’m the owner of Carlotta’s Cakery. I bake the most awesome personal sized cakes in Brentwood, California, if not the United States!” And that was how it all began.

Paperback available at Amazon

All other purchase links: https://lisamaliga.wordpress.com/novels/hollywood-after-dark-3-tales-of-terror/

Sweet Dreams – A Contemporary Romance eBook


Copyright 2013 

sweet dreams a novella by lisa maliga amazon kindle smashwordsFormer bakery employee Brenda Nevins is now a successful romance author of the Yolanda’s Yummery book series. Best friend and agent, Samantha Ho, has gotten her a movie deal and a reality TV show about her forthcoming bakery, named after her bestselling series. The frosting on Brenda’s cake is her engagement to handsome and sexy Warren Stillman, a Beverly Hills attorney.

Complications arise whenever any communication she sends or receives turns into snippets of a cheesy science fiction story. Her agent, fiancé, movie producer and anyone else on the receiving end thinks she’s playing a stupid joke. Brenda is trying to track down the person responsible for hijacking her career, her finances, and even her fiancé.

For Brenda, finding the culprit is necessary to make sure that her dreams aren’t derailed. In the process, she wonders if her aspirations are as dreamy as she’s imagined?

This novella is approximately 30,000 words.

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/355959

Amazon Link: Sweet Dreams

Kobo Link: Sweet Dreams

Barnes & Noble Link: Sweet Dreams

Read a review of Sweet Dreams at Cheryl’s Book Nook.

“As a book reviewer I couldn’t help but find a few of Brenda’s inner thoughts just a tiny bit snarky. A reviewer who claimed your request for a book review got sent to their spam folder, and all that frilly stuff Brenda spouts off on her blog had me in stitches. Sounds like our author knows from whence she came. This is a delightful novella and I am for sure going to keep my eyes open for more from this author.” Julie, Romancing the Book

Read full review here: http://romancing-the-book.com/2014/08/review-sweet-dreams-by-lisa-maliga.html

Squirrels in the Hood ~ An Excerpt

By Lisa Maliga Copyright 2011-2013


Sniffing a peanut before eating it is a common trait all squirrels share. Soon, that peanut shell will fall to the ground, resulting in more landlord complaints. Every night I would vacuum or sweep up the extraneous mess left behind, but some of the remnants fell to the ground below. I also had to resort to buying loose peanuts so discarded peanut shells didn’t plummet downstairs. squirrels in the hood lisa maliga Sharing wasn’t a trait I saw on display. If Cocoa Butter was eating at a plastic pagoda bird feeder, she “owned” it for the duration she parked her chubby behind on the floor. If another squirrel wanted to dine at a neighboring feeder, she’d stop eating and chase the newcomer away. It was more work for her to be a bully than it was to allow another friend or relative to sit nearby and dine. Maybe the seeds and nuts were tastier in her bin. Or she was saving the other house for her next meal. The other squirrels usually returned not long after the altercation. The scene was repeated and the same flurry of feet was heard departing.

Squirrels in the Hood is available in eBook format at many online bookstores. See more pictures at my Squirrel-Friends Board on Pinterest!

North of Sunset ~ An Excerpt

By Lisa Maliga

Copyright 2010-2013

Chapter Four


Emily drove up the winding road and missed the turnoff for the second time. “Crap,” she groaned. Almost twenty minutes had elapsed since she left her apartment. She turned the car around and then was face to face with the huge black wrought iron gate. Ivy grew over it and the brick walls and all she saw was the stucco roof of the mansion. She opened her window and drove close to the speaker.

“Who is it?” asked a gruff voice.

“My name’s Emily Karelin. I’m a temp from Job Co.”

The gate slid open and she waited for it to part to the right all the way before driving up the long asphalt driveway. Eucalyptus and magnolia trees lined the drive, their scent permeating the air. She parked at the edge of the driveway near the basketball goal. Triple Double was painted on the white backboard in red lettering.

Emily grabbed her purse and left the window down and the door unlocked and felt secure enough to leave it unclubbed. Judging by the new BMW 850i parked in one of the open garages, a Ford Escort wasn’t prime pickings for theft.

She slowly went up the concrete walkway, approaching the vast beige Spanish style house. The double doorway seemed massive and suddenly it opened.

The bearded man who stood there appeared agitated. He had on a pair of soiled jeans and an old gray polo shirt and resembled a construction worker. Only his Rolex gave off any hint of wealth.

“I’m Sherman Lee.” He stated and shook her hand as his grey/blue eyes scanned her body with almost as much intensity as Matt’s. “C’mon in…Emily?”

She nodded. “Hi.” She answered, feeling uneasy. As her mom used to say, he was at that ‘dangerous age.’ Of course, dear ol’ mom thought any male between the ages of 15 and 100 fell into the dangerous category.

north of sunset paperback lisa maligaNorth of Sunset is available in paperback and as an eBook. See more at the North of Sunset page.

Love Me, Need Me: A Narcissist’s Tale ~ Excerpt

Middle-aged Arlen J. Stevenson hails from Alabama. He’s a bumbling sexual predator, narcissist, and author of three insipid zombie books. His relentless and often hilarious pursuit of women online leads him to our other protagonist, Los Angeles-based writer of term papers, Helena Hoffman. She isn’t aware of what Arlen is as she only sees his amusing and entertaining side in their daily email correspondence.  

Told in alternating points of view, we see Arlen’s self-absorbed lifestyle as he endeavors to meet his numerous catches all over the South. Helena and Arlen get friendlier via their online communication, and he invites her to be his personal manager because of her communications skills, gullibility factor and location. She launches a MySpace site for his new company. Soon he realizes there are thousands of available women in his region alone! Unlike the jailbait that many online stalkers pursue, Arlen chases after their mothers and grandmothers. Helena is aware of his perpetual cheating and decides to investigate it in person. What happens after that is alternately scary and darkly humorous. 


That night I posted up my short story, Zombies At The Kings Country Buffet. The comments came pouring in and I was winning more subscribers and more fans. Some of those ol’ gals were bringing in other ol’ gals. I was sent pictures of some of ‘em and lots of private email addresses and phone numbers. To say my calendar was getting kinda full was a huge understatement. God, I loved MySpace!

A few days later I found time to chat with Helena on the IM but of course I had to remain hidden or else I would’ve been inundated with gals wanting to chat. We discussed the overwhelming success of my short story, one that had been on my web site for years, but over here it had garnered over 60 comments. Danielle in Odessa, Texas wrote about my witty horror tale, saying she was laughing and crying at the same time and she would stay far away from buffets in the future. BlueEyedBlonde wrote, in part: “you have quite a sense of humor about you (Thank GOD !!!) I enjoy your writings…”

Gillian in North Carolina: “I don’t care bout no dam zombies but what you tell me is that u got some balls great big size and I love you writeing”

Frankinzombie wrote: “Because Im a loser baby,now why dont you kill me, that is If I turn into a zombie. Its all fantasy,we know about reality,work,hot girlfriend who likes expensive things,and talks to much while your watching a football game, giving your bud some $ to score some bud, and dosnt show up till the next day,wop-ass time,i know you been pinching my bag mo-fo get the picture,escape from reality,til zombies really happens,its comming soon”

And Robbi Zombie in Pennsylvania wrote: “Arlen, you are one of the finest zombie writers in your genre. Not only do you maintain a level of tension, but it’s interlaced with lots of humor. I wish I could give you 10 kudos!”

Love Me, Need Me: A Narcissist’s Tale is available as an eBook and paperback.

love me, need me: a narcissist's tale by lisa maliga ebook


Notes from Nadir

“Notes from Nadir” is a wacky and poignant look at a Los Angeles-based writer who is forced to return to her Midwestern home due to financial difficulties. She moves back in with her Mom in a semi-retirement community, works a couple of dead end jobs, and meets a sexy British bakery owner. An opportunity to freelance for Gordon or work as a writer/photographer at The Factory in the armpit of Nadir ensures an income. But how long will she be confined in a lifestyle that she has long outgrown?

If noon is Zenith then Nadir is 6:30. And it was 6:29 and counting down. Way down.

Some Reviews:

“The writer is an amazing story teller. The way she describes even the most mundane events drew me in. I had to know what was going to happen next. I can’t compare this book to any other books I’ve read because it isn’t. If this isn’t a true story, you’ll believe it is.” Clarissa Draper author of The Sholes Key

“I first started reading this memoir through the author’s blog, and I was quickly hooked by her conversational, down-to-earth style. The book – with lots of new content not featured on the blog – follows the author as she leaves behind her LA life and returns to her roots, with lots of vignettes and familial snapshots along the way. A very enjoyable read about trying to fit back into a mould you no longer fit.” Talli Roland author of The Hating Game and Watching Willow Watts

“The author created an interesting story with her notes, the flow is not broken with the short snippets. We see the changes in the relationship between a romantic crush on a boss, and new affection between mother and daughter.” Glynis Smy author of Ripper, My Love and Maggie’s Child

Notes from Nadir links: Amazon Kindle, B&N Nook, Smashwords and Kobo


North of Sunset

It’s 1996 and Hollywood is thriving in the era of indulgences. Sherman Lee is a volatile and successful action movie producer who seeks critical acceptance. Ever the partier, his excesses are starting to take their toll. He can’t keep a personal assistant for more than a few days until Emily Karelin is sent to fill the position. She’s a temp with no showbiz background, one of the requirements Sherman demands.

Emily is struggling to find what she wants out of life. The only thing that fills her nonworking hours is ice skating. She doesn’t trust men due to a failed relationship with a pathological liar. When she works for Sherman, they discover their synchronistic style and are intrigued with each other. Sherman’s longtime best friend, internationally renowned actor Wesley Barron, is aware of the producer’s problems. He also wonders who this unknown and mysterious Emily is.

“North of Sunset” shows a segment of a power broker’s jaded lifestyle. Even in one of the most expensive places to live in the world, sometimes you find what you’re not looking for…

Available at Amazon Kindle, B&N Nook, Smashwords, paperback edition

north of sunset by lisa maliga
NEW 2015 cover