Halloween Blogfest: Charlie Cochrane

I have never seen a ghost. Not knowingly, anyway, by which I mean I could well have seen dozens of ghosts and just not realised. (That’s exactly the sort of thing that could happen to me, given how oblivious I am to things going on around me.) The nearest I’ve got was when I was driving down an unlit road and a strangely moving, tall, glowing apparition appeared in my headlights. My stomach churned, but it only turned out to be a horse and rider, with reflective strips attached to various parts of their respective anatomies.

But I do know at least two people, whose testimony I would respect, who have seen ghosts. One saw the ghost of her grandfather at an upstairs window on the day of his funeral. The other saw a huge apparition of a monk near Beaulieu, something she described as terrifying but not evil. She was aware of an overwhelming feeling of good coming from him. Beaulieu Abbey is a well known tourist attraction and has a history of strange sightings/sounds.

I’ve also come across stories from family members that make me go, “I wonder…” Just this summer, we were holidaying on Jersey (a place which has many ghostly legends of its own) and my middle daughter plus her boyfriend decided to cycle round the island. It’s not far, but it’s challenging, given the number of hills. They were on the north of the island (one of the spookiest parts) and were going up yet another hill, desperately thirsty and tired. They’d given up hope when they turned a bend in the road and saw both a bench and an ice cream van. Miles from anywhere, nobody else around, just these two very welcome facilities.

Afterwards, looking at the map, we couldn’t work out where they might have been to find such an oasis in the hilly desert. We came up with the theory that these were a ghostly/angelic bench and a ghostly/angelic ice cream van, that only appeared when poor, desperate cyclists came panting and straining up the hill.

So, back to where I started. I wonder if I have come across ghosts and never realised?

Leave a comment for a chance to win a three e-book package from Elm Books Death series: Death on a Cold Night, Death and the Detective, and Undeath and the Detective.

About the Author:CC_The_Shade_on_a_Fine_Day As Charlie Cochrane couldn’t be trusted to do any of her jobs of choice—like managing a rugby team—she writes. Her favourite genre is gay fiction, predominantly historical romances/mysteries.

Charlie’s Cambridge Fellows Series, set in Edwardian England, was instrumental in her being named Author of the Year 2009 by the review site Speak Its Name.

She’s a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association, Mystery People and International Thriller Writers Inc, with titles published by Carina, Samhain, MLR and Cheyenne (and coming soon from Elm).

You can catch Charlie on Facebook, twitter, goodreads, her website or her blog.

Halloween Blogfest: Nancy Fraser

Unusual Occurrences!

A number of years ago, I attended a presentation by a touch healer. The woman was speaking to our local writer’s group on the power of suggestion and faith as it related to healing the sick. She asked how many of us believed in a power beyond reality – not necessarily a religious belief but more of a spiritual one. Nearly all of us raised our hands.

We were discussing “unusual occurrences” and someone mentioned that just before he died, their father had told them he’d spent many nights talking to his wife and preparing himself for heaven. Everyone had dismissed it as senility because his wife had been dead for nearly five years. Yet, he’d been adamant in his belief right up until he passed away.

I raised my hand next and mentioned that my mother, who was nearly 90 at the time, had been seeing a kitten in her home even though she didn’t own a cat. However, she insisted that there was a small calico kitten in the hallway leading to her bedroom and from where she’d sit watching television, she could see him coming down the hall toward her. Each time she talked about the kitten, he was getting closer and closer to the living room. The guest speaker said it was widely documented that people on the cusp of passing away would often claim to see deceased family members or animals that nobody else could see. According to reports, the longer the loved one talked, or the closer the animal got, the sooner the passing. I left the meeting a little shaken and somewhat concerned but within a couple of days had forgotten the entire incident.

Then, one Tuesday a month or so later my mother called and asked me to come over to fix her hair for her, trim it, color it, because she had a doctor’s appointment on Thursday. My cousins and I always teased her, telling her “nobody believes your hair is still brown”. Yet, it made her feel better about herself so I always did as she asked. When I was done with her hair, I made supper for her, did the dishes, and went back to my own home.

I called her that evening and asked what she was doing and if she’d remembered to take the curlers out of the back of her hair. She said, “yes”, and she was watching the hockey game. And … the kitten was sitting in her lap. My heart nearly stopped. I asked if she’d like me to come back and spend the night and she said, “no, we’ll talk tomorrow” and we hung up.

The next day, I called her on my lunch hour and there was no answer. I tried again a bit later and still nothing. I called my cousin who lived next door and asked him to check on her. Sure enough, she’d passed away in her sleep sometime during the night. The coroner who attended the scene estimated the time of death at approximately three in the morning. He said she’d had a heart attack, likely hadn’t even woken up, and had passed away peacefully.

Before I left work to rush to her house, I called my son but got no answer. Once I’d reached my mother’s home and attended to the immediate business at hand, I called my son again. When he answered, I asked where he’d been and he told me he’d spent the night at a friend’s house. The friend’s small calico cat had died in the wee hours of the morning and my son hadn’t wanted to leave his grieving friend alone.

The kitten story made the rounds over the next few days through visitation and the funeral, sending goose bumps up and down more than one person’s arms. It wasn’t until a week or so later that I found out that my mother hadn’t had a doctor’s appointment that Thursday after all. When I look back at her last few hours, I now believe she knew she was going to die and had no intention of going to her grave with gray hair!

Leave a comment for a chance to win a $10 gift card to any online book retailer (Amazon, B&N, etc.) and a digital copy of The Lawman’s Agreement, Entangled Scandalous.

About the Author:Like most authors, Nancy Fraser began writing at an early age, usually on the walls and with crayons or, heaven forbid, permanent markers. Her love of writing often made her the English teacher’s pet, which, of course, resulted in a whole lot of teasing. Still, it was worth it.

When not writing (which is almost never), Nancy dotes on her five beautiful grandchildren and looks forward to traveling and reading when time permits. Nancy lives in Atlantic Canada where she enjoys the relaxed pace and colorful people.

Website: www.nancyfraser.ca
Blog: Notes From a Romantic’s Heart http://nancyfraser.ca/wordpress/
Facebook: http://facebook.com/nancyfraserauthor
Twitter: @nfraserauthor
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7206382.Nancy_Fraser

Halloween Blogfest: Juli D. Revezzo

Ghoulies who won’t obey the calendar

Ah, Halloween! My favorite time of year. The ghosts and ghoulies are out decorating every store and doorway across town. Being allowed to dress in black, wear black nail polish, and not get funny looks? Awesome! History says the holiday goes back to the Irish, when they carved out turnips for Jack o’Lanterns, and possibly even further. This is where I come in. 🙂 I always loved dressing up for Halloween—in fact my husband and I were trick or treating well into our senior year in High school.

There was even this time when my whole family participated in a haunted house…But that’s a tale for another night.

These days, I’m more partial to the old fashioned holiday of Samhain. The Celts maintained that this was the time of year when the Veil between the worlds was thinnest. When living lovers and those who’ve passed into the Otherworld could routinely visit each other. The living can come to the Otherworld as freely as any spirit—most of the time.

Everything pivotal in Celtic mythology happens with the otherworld involved. Most of the time it happens at Samhain.

I write Celtic flavored paranormals, so I get to plot in all kinds of things that cross that boundary. The only problem with my latest paranormal romance from The Wild Rose Press, PASSION’S SACRED DANCE, is that while my hero and heroine were testing out their sizzling new relationship, those things bumping around the hallway (or rather, in their case, lopping) didn’t want to adhere to the normal rules. They ignored the Samhain rule altogether and come across any ole time they like. Mainly, I think, they were drawn by the landscape. Florida doesn’t have the usual earmarks of fall, no changing leaves, no severely cooler temperatures (although, live here for a while and you’ll welcome the 80s vs. high 90s!). To see what havoc my monsters are out to cause my hero and heroine on this side of the Veil, you’ll have to read PASSION’S SACRED DANCE. The monsters just don’t want to hear they’re a little late for the party. Oh, well. 😉 For those that love paranormal romance that’s the great thing about the genre, right? 😉 The weird things of the universe may ignore the usual calendar dates of the open Veil but I hope you will find it perfect for a Halloween night. What’s your favorite thing about Halloween? Or paranormal romance in general?

jdraperbookmarkpsdflatexcopyTo win a copy of one of my pretty bookmarks for PASSION’S SACRED DANCE, please leave a comment answering the question above. 🙂

Battling mounting debt, Stacy Macken is determined not to lose her historic art gallery. When Aaron Fielding appears and offers to help, she fights to keep the attraction sizzling between them from clouding her judgment. He may be her savior in disguise–but can she trust him?

Aaron intrigues her with tales of the Tuatha dé Danann, sworn warriors who protect humanity from the monsters seeking their destruction. If Aaron can prove what he claims, she would give up anything to help–even the gallery he claims is sacred ground. But with her property set to stage the next epic battle, she needs answers. An old family diary will confirm the ancient legend is true, if only they can find it in time.

If the battle is lost, the enemy will take control of Earth for the next five hundred years. Stacy and Aaron’s budding love might only complicate things.

If you’d like to check PASSION’S SACRED DANCE out, it’s available now at Amazon for Kindle and coming soon to The Wild Rose Press shop and other ebook retailers.

Thank you to the folks of Long and Short Reviews for inviting me here today!

About the Author:Juli D. Revezzo has long been in love with writing, a love built by devouring everything from the Arthurian legends, to the works of Michael Moorcock, and the classics and has a soft spot for classic the “Goths” of the 19th century. Her short fiction has been published in Dark Things II: Cat Crimes, The Scribing Ibis, Eternal Haunted Summer, Twisted Dreams Magazine and Luna Station Quarterly. She also has an article and book review or two out there. But her heart lies in the storytelling. She is a member of Independent Authors Network and Magic Appreciation Tour. Passion’s Sacred Dance is her first romance novel.

You can find out more about her at her homepage: http://julidrevezzo.com/
Blog: http://julidrevezzo.com/blog
Like her on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/JD-Revezzo/233193150037011
Follow her on Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/111476709039805267272/posts
On GoodReads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5782712.Juli_D_Revezzo
Shelfari: http://www.shelfari.com/authors/a1002694572/Juli-D-Revezzo/
On Twitter: @julidrevezzo

Halloween Blogfest: Eric Garrison

Jailhouse Spook
a true ghost story by Eric Garrison
Years ago, I was out with a ghost hunting group, investigating the Rotary Jail Museum in Crawfordsville, Indiana. The sun had set, and we’d toured the upper parts of the jail and ended up on the lower level, among the great engine and gears that turned the whole metal structure containing the cells above.

The lower level consisted of a central gear room and passages leading out to a doughnut corridor surrounding it. Windows set high in the walls let in only the occasional yellow of streetlights outside. Anywhere we stood, all that could be seen in the nearly total darkness was about 15 feet of hallway as it curved around, out of sight. Our flashlight beams played on the old stone of the foundation, and we kept our voices quiet as the leaders of the group told us history and shared some stories of past visits to the place.

My fascination was with using gadgets and technology to get evidence of paranormal activity. Many of us had digital voice recorders or small tape recorders going. I’d also brought a Trifield Natural Electromagnetic detector with me. It was one of the group’s most expensive gadgets, but I hoped to get some use out of it. A Trifield can sense minute changes in the local magnetic field, but can be set too sensitive, getting set off by ghost hunters, rather than ghosts. I went almost around the bend ahead of our group and set it on the floor and tuned in the sort of balance point of sensitivity. When I had it just low enough not to screech aloud with everyone where they stood, I backed away from it, rejoining the group. The Trifield let out a quiet squeal as I moved, but silenced again when I stopped.

We all quieted down to do an “EVP session”. EVP is “electronic voice phenomena”, voices that get recorded that we don’t hear aloud. The idea is to review the recording afterward, headphones on, volume turned high, to listen for those voices as evidence. We often take turns asking questions to the air, as though someone was there to ask. In case someone is listening and wants to answer. I tried not to move much, so as not to spoil my recording or set off the Trifield.

Then it happened. The Trifield burped and screeched, and we all looked over, peering around the bend to where it sat on the floor. I couldn’t keep from swearing out loud as I saw a faint white outline, like an inverse silhouette of a person, peek its head around the bend at the limits of my sight. The shock I felt in the moment made me taste metal in my mouth, and made the hair on my arms stand up with literal goosebumps. Despite years of ghost hunting before that night, I’d never seen anything paranormal with my own eyes.

I asked if anyone else had seen it, and a couple of people at the front with me had. The leader seemed nonchalant, as she’d seen things like this before. I kicked myself for not having a video camera rolling at the time.

At the next meeting, one of my fellow ghost hunters came up to me, excited about an EVP they’d gotten right at the time we’d seen the ghost!

I had to laugh, because it turned out to be me cursing under my breath, unfortunately not evidence of the paranormal sighting we’d had.

I will be giving away a free ebook of my novel, Four ’til Late, to a random commenter on the post 24 hours after it is posted.

About the Author:Eric Garrison is active in the writing community in Indianapolis, Indiana. He lives in the Circle City with his wife, step-daughter and a cabal of cats. He also enjoys gaming, home brewing beer, and finding innovative uses for duct tape.

Eric’s novel, Reality Check, is a science fiction adventure released by Hydra Publications. Reality Check reached #1 in Science Fiction on Amazon.com during a promotion in July 2013.

Eric’s supernatural fantasy novels include the Road Ghosts trilogy, released through Seventh Star Press. The first in this series, Four ’til Late, was released in July 2013. His novels are dark supernatural fantasies, dealing with ghosts, demonic possession and even sinister fairy folk.

Eric’s short story, “Drag Show” appeared in the Fall 2011 edition of Strange, Weird and Wonderful Magazine. His flash piece, “Dark Reflection”, appeared in the Indiana Horror 2011 anthology.

Website/Blog: http://sillyhatbooks.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/EricGarrisonAuthor
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1978111.Eric_Garrison
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Eric-Garrison/e/B005H63TLE
Twitter: https://twitter.com/erichris
G+: https://plus.google.com/117572041782679864253

 

 

Four ’til Late by Eric Garrison

 

See the Four ’til Late book trailer on YouTube!

Published July 2013 by Seventh Star Press.

Cover and interior art by Bonnie Wasson.

 

A Haunted Road Trip

four-till-late3D_zps00eb87fbAmateur ghost hunter Brett and his friends Gonzo, Jimbo, and Liz are on a road trip with dangerous detours, dreadful dreams and dire warnings. But that won’t keep them from reaching their goal: New Orleans. Along the way they discover that some spirits leave you with more than a hangover and regrets. Can they get there in one piece, or will they be stopped and rest in peace?

The bags are packed, the engine’s running. Time to turn up the radio and get moving. Because the road ghosts are waiting, and it’s Four ’til Late.

 

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Four-Late-Road-Ghosts-ebook/dp/B00E4WO7YA

Nook: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/four-til-late-eric-garrison/1013893134

Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/books/four-til-late/

iBookstore: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/four-til-late/id691150466

 

Halloween Blogfest: Sharita Lira

Halloween, the fantastic holiday
Sharita Lira

Greetings readers.

Oh it’s that time of year, AGAIN? *grumbles* Almost Christmas. Time to get out the pocket book and do last minute shopping. But not before we celebrate my favorite holiday, Halloween. No, I’m not really into scary stuff. Heck, I don’t even watch scary movies and I hate haunted houses. What I love about Halloween is the costumes and the parties; the one time of the year where it’s totally okay to look ridiculous. Over the years, I’ve been to several Halloween bashes dressed up and other times just in a witches hat. The fun is watching other people and laughing at some outrageous costumes. Not only that, since I have kids, I enjoy dressing my little princess up as her favorite Disney character for the holiday. At the moment, she’s feeling Cinderella but she was looking at Jasmine and Ariel too so we’ll see what she decides.

Me, I’m not sure. I always wear black and usually go for the witch or goth type costume harking back to my younger days. After all, we like to hang on to our youth for as long as we possibly can. *laughs* Or I might go for something different this year, who knows. That’s the brilliance of Halloween, putting your mind to work and coming up with something brilliant to show off.

What about you? What are your favorite things about Halloween? Oh did I mention how much I love candy corn? Leave me a comment along with your email, telling me what you like as well as your email. My prize is a $5 GC from Amazon and a book from my backlist. Good luck.

PrettyMM2Blurb: New Orleans is supposed to be the big easy. One night changes everything for Frankie Choteau.

New Orleans. A city rich in tradition, diversity, and on the comeback trail from hurricane Katrina. Francois “Frankie” Choteau, a resident of this town, a cop with a hot temper and low tolerance for bs. Kajika Fortier, a transplant from Oklahoma came here looking for a dream and unfortunately it’s turned into a nightmare. On a hot summer night, they meet and cross paths during a very difficult situation. Despite this, the attraction between them is evident and loneliness for both men is a fate worse than death. They’d both like a chance at happiness but will the circumstances and Frankie’s uneasiness prevent their happy ever after?

Read chapter one here

Amazon    Allromance  Smashwords

Michael Mandrake pens complex characters already comfortable with their sexuality. Thorough these, he builds worlds not centered on erotica but rather the mainstream plots we might encounter in everyday life through personal experiences or the media. To find out more please visit http://tabooindeed.blogspot.com.

Author Sharita Lira: In one word, crazy. Just crazy enough to have 3 different muses running around in her head, driving her to sheer exhaustion with new plot bunnies and complex characters.

This happily married mother of two beautiful children loves music, computers, reading, and still enjoys reading and writing fanfiction. She’s a proud member of the Erotica Readers & Writers Association, as well as an advocate for rights of LGBT citizens. She’s also a contributor to the heavy metal ezine Fourteeng.net.

For more information, please visit http://www.thelitriad.com as well as her Facebook fanpage, The Literary Triad.

Halloween Blogfest: Charlene Roberts

HALLOWEEN – OH, THE HORROR! 🙂

Halloween combines the best of two things. What other holiday can do dressing up and scaring yourself silly so well?

My friends think I’m nuts, and as such I have no one to keep me company for Halloween events. I enjoy them, but I’m not going by myself, are you kidding?

I love the scary part of Halloween—the horror movies, haunted houses and the traditional vampires and werewolves. But I can’t deal with zombies; why? Because they are the most “realistic” monster to me. Anything that resembles too close to life frightens me the most. What if there was a disease out there that could turn us into flesh-eating, mindless freaks?

Actually, I take it back—I did watch the zombie movie 28 Days Later and couldn’t get to sleep for a couple of nights. And after a couple of episodes, I refuse to watch anymore of The Walking Dead, (lol).
I have fond memories of old shows. Does anyone remember a television show called “The Night Stalker”? Wow, that was the best scary show on television. Honestly, I don’t know how I managed to sleep at night!
I also enjoy “Supernatural” – sure it helps that there are some cute guys on the show (hello, Sam!), but the earliest episodes were the best. Hunting down the truth of mythical and horror stories, and fighting ghosts. There was one episode with a scarecrow and human sacrifices that still gives me the creeps!

So what are my favourites?

Vampire movie – 1970s Salem’s Lot. This starred David Soul (from the original Starsky & Hutch television series) as a reporter returning to his home town to find it infested with vampires and how he destroys them. Sounds simple, but the insane creep factor and the vampire scared me so bad that I hid in the bathroom for the rest of the movie. And all based on a Stephen King novel—go figure.

Werewolf movie – American Werewolf in London. It was a bit cheesy, but still scary, especially on a movie screen. When I had visited London and went up that same long escalator, I understood how those victims must have felt. And the special monster effects were fantastic!

Haunted house – Screemers in Toronto; six rooms of scares, chills and lots of screaming. The haunted mansion was the best (and the scariest), and I ran out of there so fast that my friends couldn’t keep up.

Scary books – I have to admit there not many books that scare me. The best horror stories I’ve enjoyed are Stephen King’s and I find his collection of short stories are more frightening than the full length novels. I think it has to do with the idea of using ordinary little towns as backdrops and offering a “taste” of what can happen.

The best anthology I’ve read was “Nightmares and Dreamscapes” – I don’t know what it was about that book (I think it was the vampire), but short stories give just enough of a taste of a story that allows me to use my imagination to think “what else could have happened?” And then I freak myself out! lol

And I mention these as being scary for me because I don’t scare easily.

You all have to let me your all-time favourite, scary moments! I’m sure there’s a horror movie or book out there I haven’t seen or read yet.

eternal heiressLeave a comment for a chance to win an ebook (.pdf or .epub for tablet) of Eternal Heiress, an urban fantasy novel (approx. 300 pages), published by Double Dragon Publishing.

About the Author: Charlene Roberts lives in Toronto, Canada. Her writing career started after helping a friend type her historical novel. When she became a member of her local writing group, she pursued her love of the written word until her first sale and hasn’t looked back since.

She has worked as a Script Supervisor, Book Reviewer for Romantic Times, modelled and now works as an Executive Assistant at a consulting company. However her love of creating stories for others to read and enjoy still remains her first and foremost passion.

Website: http://charlenelroberts.wordpress.com/
GoodReads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4333577.Charlene_Roberts
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Charlene-Roberts/551115788273109?ref=hl

Buy the book at Double Dragon, Amazon, or Kobo.

Halloween Blogfest: Anna Bayes

Hello, I’m Anna Bayes, a writer of erotic short stories with heroines who still believe in the power of true love.

I used to love autumns. The crisp air, reddish golden leaves dancing at my feet and the perfect weather to be innocently wearing cardigans to hide those extra 5 pounds I could never seem to eliminate — until my father passed away four years ago.

October. That was when he left.

It had been especially difficult for me losing my Dad. For a short time, I plunged into the mindless stupor of having a succession of quick, casual sex with relative strangers. It was simply physical. I still have a mental picture of the condoms they used, but not the color of their eyes or hair; and I most certainly do not remember their names.

That dulled the pain for a while, but did nothing to help me face the source of my depression.

It took me a year to eventually accept the irrevocable reality of not having my father around anymore. Another six months passed before I finally came to terms with having my Dad only in my memory and heart.

He gave me my fundamental values, and the skeleton of my personality. I have always been different from girls of my age, and I scoffed at the notion of trying to blend in. I refused to be anything else but the freakish and defiant over-achiever that I was.

Writing was part of what made it bearable to journey through days when I missed my father. He used to have an old typewriter that I’d punch out imaginary conversations on. I loved the extra strength you needed to exert to type out each letter: made you really think before you branded those words on paper.

Hurtful and incoherent thoughts dominated my first writing attempts, but they were a release. With time, an intuitive voice found its way out of the gibberish I typed onto my modern laptop screen. Ideas and scenes made their way onto the word document. One word after another, stories came to life.

Sex helped me heal. I have always been in awe of the powers of sex: it became the topic of choice that crept onto my pages. That was how I became Anna Bayes, an erotica writer.

Autumn: I do not fear the season anymore.

Let earth-shattering good sex and fascinating stories dominate the world!

For a teaser, here’s my first self-published ebook, Snug Fit: a sweet, contemporary M/F erotic romance. Hope you enjoy reading the excerpt!

I’m always on the lookout for new female names for the leading lady in my next stories. If you’ll comment below with a name suggestion (perhaps with a description of what she is like in your imagination), I’ll pick a random winner on Saturday (November 2) to receive an ecopy of Snug Fit — I can email either a .pdf or .mobi file to the lucky winner.

snug fit book coverTitle: Snug Fit

Category: contemporary, M/F erotic romance

Format: ebook

Pages: 12

Blurb: Friday night, 7:52pm. Kate’s dress feels too tight, the restaurant seems too fancy, and her date is running late. She has decided that tonight is a bad idea after all, until a stranger two seats away begins talking to her.

Excerpt: Read an Adult Excerpt here http://annabayes.wordpress.com/2013/10/09/new-release-snug-fit/

Buy links:

Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00FOH0QAS

Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00FOH0QAS

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/366319

* *

Author Bio

Anna writes contemporary, paranormal, BDSM and LGBT erotic romances. She is herself a bisexual submissive, and finds writing the perfect outlet for her wild ideas.

In real life, Anna is an introverted bookworm, looks sweet and kind of innocent, but don’t let her brown eyes fool you.

Find and follow Anna everywhere!

About.me http://about.me/annabayes
Amazon http://www.amazon.com/author/annabayes

Blog http://annabayes.wordpress.com

Facebook http://www.facebook.com/anna.bayes.author

Goodreads http://www.goodreads.com/annabayes

Smashwords https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/annabayes

Twitter (@anna_bayes) http://www.twitter.com/anna_bayes

Halloween Blogfest: Albert Tucher

WHAT DOES DIANA ANDREWS DO ON HALLOWEEN?

Here’s hint: prostitutes are often called “working girls.” On holidays, they’re often working.
This is something I learned from my Technical Consultant. The reader may have heard the term. Movie and television productions often employ technical consultants. A cop show will hire a police officer, or a hospital drama will have physicians on hand to explains how things are done in real life.

My Technical Consultant was a young woman in Diana’s line of work. At one of our meetings she mentioned that she planned to make a few hours of Thanksgiving Day available to clients who wanted to see her. I knew immediately that I would use that scenario somehow, and in fact, I did it in a short story called Calories. In this story a man’s wife wants him out of the house while she gets ready for the big dinner. His decision to see Diana has dire consequences.

Calories was published by Untreed Reads and reviewed here at Long and Short Reviews.

This client wants to get away from his life for a while. Other men have no one and must pay for company, even on Christmas. This situation comes up in Safe Passage which I wrote in response to a hardboiled Christmas challenge at the Do Some Damage crime fiction blog:
http://dosomedamage.blogspot.com/2010/12/safe-passage.html

Which brings us to Halloween. I haven’t yet used this holiday in fiction. I certainly plan to, and some scenarios have occurred to m. One might be a costumed swinger party, which Diana attends as half of a couple. I learned from my Technical Consultant that a man without a willing partner will sometimes hire a “girlfriend” to attend such a party, because single men are often not welcome. Why a swinger party? Because the potential for jealousy is always present, and jealousy can lead to the kind of mayhem that makes Diana put on her detective hat.

Tucher_Albert_The_Same_Mistake_TwiceBut here is where I can use the reader’s help. What are your ideas for a Halloween story? Tell me in a comment, and the best idea will win a copy of the new Diana Andrews novella, The Same Mistake Twice.

Are you up for it?

About the Author: Albert Tucher was an aspiring operatic tenor before his insatiable appetite for rejection led him to writing. He is the creator of prostitute Diana Andrews, whose first novel length adventure, The Same Mistake Twice, is just out from Untreed Reads. Diana has also appeared in fifty short stories in such venues as ThugLit, All Due Respect, and the anthology The Best American Mystery Stories 2010.

Albert Tucher is a librarian in his day job, and his hobby is drinking too much coffee.

Untreed Reads page: http://store.untreedreads.com/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=6_261
Amazon page: http://www.amazon.com/Albert-Tucher/e/B005MOOTGK
Barnes and Noble page: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/c/albert-tucher
Website: http://alberttucher.writersresidence.com/

Halloween Blogfest: Dena Garson

Have you ever seen a ghost?

I have. Or, at least, I think I have. And it wasn’t as scary as you’d think.

My maternal grandmother died about fifteen years ago. I was quite close to her and felt the loss rather keenly. To the point that I fell ill during the 14-hour drive to get to her home and be with my mother and attend the funeral. I don’t remember ever being so sick before. It was like having the flu but no one else had been sick, nor did they come down with anything after. Thankfully I recovered enough to attend the funeral and by the time we headed home I was pretty much well again.

A few weeks after we returned home, I remember waking up to a particularly bright, sunny morning. When I opened my eyes, there beside the bed, was a hazy figure of a woman. She looked at me and seemed to say something, but I didn’t hear anything. Then she patted my feet and turned and walked around the end of the bed toward the door and disappeared.

While I don’t remember what the figure looked like in detail as far as her clothes or her face, I remember it being a woman and I remember immediately thinking of my grandmother.

Now… before you go discounting my story you should know that no, I had not been drinking the night before, nor was I taking any medications. Yes, I am a morning person. I’m alert almost immediately upon waking. My highest energy levels are around 7 and 8 am (I know… I’ve been told I’m weird and very annoying in the morning to the night owls of my family). And, no, I hadn’t been watching horror movies or TV shows.

By the time that incident occurred, we had been living in our house for several years. I never experienced anything like and I don’t think the house was “haunted”. I am convinced the hazy figure was my grandmother, coming to check on me and perhaps tell me goodbye. After seeing her, I had a greater sense of closure than I did even at her funeral. Once my heartbeat settled down again, that is.

If that was a bit too much for you, how about a fictional ghost story?

My newest book, Ghostly Persuasion, is set in Ireland at Tullamore Castle where erotic enchantment lurks around every corner. There are witches, ghosts, werewolves, vampires, selkies and a drop-dead gorgeous handy-man. What more could you ask for?

ghostlypersuasion_msrWhen American-born Katie Ward takes her mother’s ashes home to Ireland, she finds hunky but spell-bound Seamus MacDonhnaill loitering in her suite at Tullamore Castle. Seamus is surprised Katie can see and hear him because he was turned into a spirit three hundred years earlier.

Seamus acts as her personal tour guide around the castle and estate. Not only does he show her the historical sights but Seamus introduces her to voyeurism and a variety of other cardinal delights. As frustrating as it is for them to not be able to touch each other, they push the limits as far possible.

Katie is determined to help Seamus break the spell cast on him by the wife of one of the previous lords. A woman he refused to take as a lover. Seamus only knows the spell will not be broken until he finds and claims his one true love. With help from a few castle ghosts and the local witch, Katie’s cousin, they break the spell.

Katie and Seamus fulfill her mother’s last request by spreading her ashes along the shoreline then begin their life together.

Get it now:

Ellora’s Cave  /  Amazon  /  Barnes & Noble

I’m giving away an electronic copy of Ghostly Persuasion along with a swag pack to one randomly selected winner. Just leave a comment along with your email address to be entered to win. I’d be very interested in hearing if any of you have ever experienced something like that before.

Dena Garson

Website  |  Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Goodreads

Halloween Blogfest: Sofia Diana Gabel

Real Life Ghost Story
By Sofia Diana Gabel
I’m not really the superstitious type. I tend to believe in cold, hard facts, not things that go bump in the night, but my whole belief system was shaken a few years ago when I realized that there might really be ghosts living among us.

It happened after my children, our three cats, and I moved into an old rental house that was built back in 1921. The house was small, cozy and had all of the charm and character that comes with being built so long ago. We settled in and went about our lives until one night my eldest daughter got up in the middle of the night and woke me up.

“Mom, there’s a cat in my room and it won’t stop meowing,” she said.

Being a little bleary-eyed from getting woken up at three in the morning, I tried to comprehend what she was saying. It sunk in, finally. “Sweetie, it’s a cat outside of your window. All of our cats are right here with me.” I pointed to our three felines, sleeping quietly at the bottom of my bed.

“Oh. But it sounded like it was right near my bed.” My daughter shrugged and went back to her room.

The following night, one of my other daughters came out of her room while I was doing the dishes before heading off to bed myself. She said there was a black cat sleeping on her bed. I stared at her for a minute. We didn’t have any black cats.

When I looked, there was nothing on her bed except her pillows and comforter. Okay, I reasoned, maybe she thought a pillow was a cat. That was a pretty weak explanation, but it was the only one I had.

This sort of thing went on for weeks. I even started catching a glimpse of a black cat here and there, yet when I searched the house, I found nothing. We didn’t have a doggy door and all of our cats were indoor cats, so it wasn’t like any kitties were sneaking in at night. Our cats even seemed to see the phantom now and then. They would sit and stare at a spot on the floor, then follow this invisible thing as it apparently moved around the room, up on the table and onto the couch. At first I thought it was a spider or fly or something that would explain the behavior, but trust me, there wasn’t a single thing on the floor, the table or the couch!

My eldest daughter nicknamed our phantom Ghost Cat and we sort of laughed it off. The visions continued and after our lease was up a year later, I found a new job and we moved into another rental. Everything seemed fine until after about two weeks in the new place, Ghost Cat made an appearance in one of my daughters’ bedrooms. Our cats began watching the phantom again as well. They weren’t upset or scared. In fact, they seemed to like Ghost Cat. We all started to like Ghost Cat and would talk to our phantom feline like he was one of the family.

The more we talked to Ghost Cat, the fewer visions we saw. When I had to relocate for another job, we found a lovely condo and made yet another move. This time, however, it seemed like Ghost Cat didn’t follow. Two weeks went by without a vision, then a month and then a year. We all missed Ghost Cat and figured that he must have been lonely and had been hanging around looking for a family. Could it be that once we accepted him and talked to him, he found the happiness he was looking for and decided to go to wherever Ghost Cats go? Things are a little lonely without him around, but we’re sure he’s in a better place, hopefully a place with a catnip mouse and a full bowl of kibble. Sleep well little Ghost Cat, we miss you.

sofia TwoBrothers final coverLeave a comment for a chance to win an e-book of Two Brothers: Origin, my young adult science fiction novel, in PDF, MOBI or Epub format.

About the Author: Originally from Sydney, Australia, I now live in beautiful Southern California with my three daughters and my three hairless Sphynx cats. I have lived through so much teenage angst that I decided to write a young adult book about two teenagers who aren’t exactly human and have to deal with that, in addition to the usual teenage issues.

I’m a multi-genre author and writing is a way for me to have fun, to escape, to work through tough times and enjoy life even more. It’s a part of me and I don’t think I’ll ever stop writing. I have two bachelor degrees (archaeology and environmental resource management, with additional classes in creative and technical writing). I took classes in criminal justice for fun as well as for additional knowledge into the criminal mind (helps with the thriller genre!). Now I know more about serial killers than I ever wanted to!

Social Media Sites:

http://sofiadianagabel.com/ (Website)

www.facebook.com/sofiadianagabel.author

www.facebook.com/argusdachel (protagonist’s Facebook page)

http://approachablefiction.blogspot.com/

Twitter: @sofiadianagabel

Buy the book at Amazon or Escargot Books