Barbara Ashford



Visit Lawrence Schoen's EATING AUTHORS blog to learn about my most memorable meal. (It wasn't at a dinner theatre!) 




Coming this summer at Westchester Community College:

July 19: Lighting a Fire Inside Your Characters 
August 2-23:
Bring Your Novel to Life

(Click on the Summer 2014 brochure. Course descriptions on page 21.) 




Excerpts from my 2012 lecture. Visit the Odyssey website or click on the files below to download.  

Podcast #60: Creating tension and complexity
Podcast #61:
Getting emotions on the page



CLOCKWORK UNIVERSE: Steampunk Vs. Aliens 

A new anthology from the editors of AFTER HOURS and MODERN FAE!

What does Daniel Craig have to do with it? Read publisher
Joshua Palmatier's interview.







The Quillery

Wicked Little Pixie

Smexy Books
"Happy Ever After?"

From the Shadows

An Exchange of Words
Guest post on David B. Coe's blog about our mutual love of history (and our shared history in Westchester County)



Opening Acts offers up the first chapters of 25 science fiction and fantasy novels that will surely whet your appetite for more!

It's free. It's available to read online or download in multiple formats. And it's a great way to discover new authors and meet up with some old favorites.

Visit Smashwords or SF Novelists to learn more or start reading.


Where magic can transform a show 
and love can change your destiny. 




Winner of the 2013 Washington Irving Award

Before you can figure out your future,
you have to understand your past. 


“There's a vast but little known overlap between fans of fantasy and fans of musical theater, and Barbara Ashford hits the sweet spot on both with Spellcast. It's warm, humorous, emotional, heartfelt, and full of magic. Curse you, Barbara, for making me cry! And for getting 'Some Enchanted Evening' stuck in my head all week.”  Carrie Vaughn, New York Times bestselling author


“Packed with mystery, emotion and wit, Ms. Ashford's debut is so unexpected and original. It's about letting go, learning to forgive, and opening your mind to embrace the impossible.”  New York Journal of Books 


“Four stars.”  Romantic Times Book Reviews  


“A surprisingly poignant novel that vividly ensnares the reader in the alluring ambience of make-believe. Ms. Ashford...takes a traditional theme and breathes life and dimensionality into it. A truly enjoyable fantasy woven by an author with a deft touch at creating a realistic and emotional love story.”  Read the whole review at Night Owl Reviews.


“One of those rare gems of a fantasy novel, Spellcast is an original, something completely unique in the pantheon of novels I have read over a lifetime. It is a love story, a fantasy, a mystery, and a theatre book all rolled up into one…”  Read the whole review at New Myths.


“[A] charming fantasy novel. Maggie Graham is enchanted and bemused by the Crossroads Theatre in Vermont, from the quaint locale to...its mysteriously charming director, who has a magical knack for pulling great performances out of an inexperienced cast...A slightly bittersweet but appropriate conclusion left me wanting more, in fine theatrical tradition.”  Locus  


More reviews...


Read more about Spellcast.


Guest blogs about Spellcast.




Spells have a way of coming back to haunt you... 


Library Journal's June 2012 “standout” novel  
My Bookish Ways' Top Twenty Novels of 2012 


Night Owl Reviews "Top Pick"  
"[The] deft mix of magic and...interpersonal problems creates a mesmerizing read. I can only hope that there will be more tales set in this enchanted corner of the world!”  Read the whole review


“Spellcrossed is whimsical, lyrical and one hell of an emotional journey. You feel like the characters are real people. You root for them, you cry for them & your heart feels heavy when you are finished reading because damn it you want more.”  Read the spoiler-free review at Wicked Little Pixie.


“Spellcast had me spellbound, and Spellcrossed was no different. [It] moved me to tears more than a few times, and was equally heartwarming and heartbreaking. From an utterly charming production of Annie (including an aging Sandy and a gaggle of orphans) to the ethereal Into the Woods, [otherworldly] magic and the magic of musical theatre intertwine seamlessly to create a read worth savoring. I can’t recommend this series highly enough!” Read the spoiler-free review at My Bookish Ways


“Fantastic sequel in a magical, emotional, heartwarming series. [It’s] an emotional roller coaster full of surprises, both good and bad. If you're a fan of romance, vivid writing, well-crafted and relatable characters, then I suggest you give Ashford's series a try, starting with her debut Spellcast.”  Read the spoiler-free review at Addicted to Heroines

“[Spellcrossed] hit hard and perfect. Ashford's skillful, heartfelt writing wrung smiles and tears from me in equal measure. It is a book about bonds and family...a romance between a human and something Other...a book that exults in human imperfections, the beautiful way they all manage to fit together into something magnificent.”  So Many Books, So Little Time 


“Maggie...casts a spell on readers. The charming storyline is fast-paced while the musical numbers bring the freshness from [Spellcast]. Barbara Ashford provides a magical tale that readers will enjoy.”  Genre Go Round Reviews


“ enjoyable and well-paced read. Maggie continues to be an extremely relatable protagonist.”  Romantic Times Book Reviews



Read more about Spellcrossed.