Spooktacular Stories & Alarming Adventures

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A: Come play with us at the Community Storyboard for my response to the Ghost Prompt: The House at Carrick Close: Visitors for a ghostly prompt

D: Why are we venturing forth when the edits for Book 1 are not complete?

A: Um . . .

D: It’s the night before NaNo, A.

A: And all through the house. . . (Sorry, Papi, I had to – your poem is stuck in my head … and gave me a great idea for posts for the month of NaNo! Cheers for that!)

D: So sorry to interrupt your terribly one-sided parenthetical – Sheesh, you’d think you’d at least talk to me during those.

A: Not everything is about you, D.

D: . . . It’s not . . . ? I’m – I’m not sure what you mean, A.

A: Well, you remember Charlie–

D: Sticky little runt – he’s still eyeing up my dagger, A.

A: Oh my god, he’s six. Chill, D. It’s Halloween and as fun and annoying as you are, you’re not spooky. Charlie and Kate’s story is a ghostly tale and any time a creepy prompt comes up, they’re beside themselves when I don’t take up the challenge and give them a bit of an airing. Little do they know they’re cooped up in their little seaside cottage for a few years yet.

D: Muahahaha.

A: Pardon?

D:  Diabolical laughter, A. Wasn’t it sinister enough? I can try again, because that is probably the scariest Halloween tale of terror any author can dream up!

A: Oh no, that was plenty sinister. Nice job, D. Just don’t take off your mask – we don’t want to terrify the readers.

D: What mask – this is my . . . Oh. I get it . Very funny, A (bloody woman).

A: Happy Halloween, D – Happy Halloween, everyone!

For Promptings from Beyond | Read more about The House at Carrick Close

The Druid asks the Questions – Dani Vedsted

Ladies and Gents, it is my pleasure and my honor to put the questions to Miss Dani Vedsted.

Dani is the proprietress of the Etsy Shop, Fall’n Love Crafts and a blog of the same name. I ask your forgiveness in advance – I am about as familiar with crafts as A is with the use of a sword for anything beyond a prop (which is actually a good thing. Yours truly may not live to see the completion of his books if she were to learn). However, Dani is a most gracious guest and walked me through the process. I hope you enjoy her as much as I did.

Now, without further ado . . .

D: Tell us a little bit about your store, Fall’n Love Crafts.

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Fall’nLove Crafts – Dani Vedsted

DV: Fall’N Love Crafts started with a birthday present for my mother: a buffalo plate. She loved it and urged me to make more and sell them. Well, I did, and plates built up and my sister, Briana Vedsted, set up my Etsy shop for me. My shop name came to me as a little bit of encouragement to myself: you need to fall in love with your piece of art before you try selling it. No one can understand it or like it if you don’t have your own feeling for it.    

D: I hear you have a new line that debuts today – what is Fallen Angel all about?

DV: Fallen Angel is sort of like a fantasy for me. You see, being an angel is all about perfection; your hair is perfect, your heart is perfect, and so on and so forth. Being a Fallen Angel means the angel is flawed with human qualities such as emotions of anger and sorrow. Plus, to show the change from Perfection to Fallen, your angel might end up with a tear in her wing or a scar on her arm. Fallen Angel, I guess, describes the way I am feeling sometimes.         

D: Where does the inspiration for your crafts come from?

DV: Most of my inspiration comes from my surrounding or family. My Fallen Angel is completely emotional though.

D: We all have our favorite children (don’t shake your head at me, A – you only have one): What has been your favorite piece to make?

DV: That is a tough question; all of my plates have a special something to them. I think it would have to be my buffalo plate that I made for my mother’s birthday.

D: Well, she’s very lucky because it is beautiful. What about a least favorite piece – do you have one? What is it about it that made it less-than-loved?

DV: My least favorite plate was a wolf plate I made for a friend of mine. The problem was I liked the finished piece, but some of my family members thought it needed more. I put things on, took things off, and finally decided to leave it how it was.  

D: That sounds like a lesson many need to learn. Take us through the crafting process – how do you begin, and how do you know it’s ready?

DV: It is really easy; I get my plate and spray paint it the desired color, I then glue on the picture and all the ‘ornaments,’ wait for it to dry, and then I spray it with a sealant.    

D: So the reason A can’t craft isn’t because it’s difficult like she keeps telling me? Ha! Knew it. Is there a piece that you would love to make, but you don’t necessarily feel as though you’re ready to make it yet?

DV: Actually, my Fallen Angel Collection was the one I was afraid to do. I really don’t even know if it is good enough for me. I guess I will find out if it gets sold.

D: I think the idea of it is wonderful – and I hope your bravery is rewarded, Dani. Are there other creative areas you’d like to branch out into?

DV: I always wished I could be a famous artist or a musician, but I think I’m neck deep into a future of farming and ranching.

D: Never stop hoping. I had nothing but cattle in the highlands of Scotland and look at me now!

A: D. You’re a character in my head.

D: Yes, but I was somebody before that, A. Don’t ruin my message.

D: Now, Dani, do you have any advice for any other young, enterprising business people out there? What have you learned?

DV: My advice is never give up, keep praying, and keep your fingers crossed. I believe everyone has a chance at doing what they love; they just need to take that first step.

D: Alright, Dani – I’m not sure if you’re familiar with the magnificence that is me, but if you had to attribute one of your pieces to a time-traveling Pict Druid, which one would it be?

DV: The plate I think that would best be attributed to D’s magnificence is my wild horse plate that captures the very spirit of freedom and eternity.

D: I love it! Thank you, Dani, for spending time with me and answering my questions. You are a delight, and I wish only the best things for you and for your latest collection.

A: There you have it folks, the Fallen Angels line is available now – as is a lovely backstory/short story on Dani’s blog. Enjoy!

In Review: Catalysts

Catalysts, a new horror novella from author Charles Yallowitz (Legends of Windemere), is perfect for a quick afternoon read. Even better if it is a drizzly and/or dark afternoon, because then the particular spell of this book can work its full – horrific – magic on your soul.

Catalysts presents readers with a true monster, one that is fascinating to watch, even as my stomach twisted a little bit at the carnage it wrecks. As much as I wanted to slap them, the characters are very real. It was easy to see a little bit of myself not only in the two main characters, but also in the ensemble cast. These men and women were the readers’ entry into the terror going on within the celebrity convention and each one was a well-drawn personality to either hope for, or revile.

I particularly enjoyed the juxtaposition of the scenes in the elevator with the chaos and slaughter outside. And as a warning to those faint of heart, it is slaughter. Personally, I enjoyed it – the descriptions were delightfully gross, and at one point, I swore I could feel the squelching of blood under my toes. The elevator scenes themselves were harrowing in their own way. It is never an easy thing to watch two people help each other spiral deeper into a personal darkness.

The story was tight and the culprits. . . I don’t want to spoil anything, but it was clever. Not only that, the book itself was a slow-burn creepy that hit me the next day. I enjoyed it and I recommend it – Catalysts is perfect for this time of year, or any time you want to peer into the darkness. And lucky you, you can buy it at Amazon!

Review based on a pre-release digital copy provided by the author.

From the Author

When trapped in an elevator together, Jeffrey and Darla learn that misery doesn’t always love company. With the screams of death and chaos echoing from outside, they find themselves slowly slipping into a world of fear and darkness they may never recover from. All the while, something is terrorizing the convention outside and turning the guests and celebrities into psychotic monsters.

 

 

Author News – Evening Edition: Catalysts

Cover Art by Dean Kealy

Cover Art by Dean Kealy

A: Look at this, indie author Charles Yallowitz’s spine-chilling horror novella, Catalysts, is available on Amazon for $0.99!

From the Author

When trapped in an elevator together, Jeffrey and Darla learn that misery doesn’t always love company. With the screams of death and chaos echoing from outside, they find themselves slowly slipping into a world of fear and darkness they may never recover from. All the while, something is terrorizing the convention outside and turning the guests and celebrities into psychotic monsters.

D: Four posts in 1 day A? Shouldn’t you be writing?

A: This is writing.

D: I mean with words that will be added to my story.

A: Um, yeah about that. My brain died sometime in the night.

D: . . . You’re not going to try to eat mine, are you?

A: No, sorry – I’m not sure it would help.

D: Are you saying my brains aren’t good enough for you, A? Because I happen to know that my brain is of excellent quality.

A: First, not a zombie. Second, you’re a character, a figment of my imagination. No matter how real or annoying you seem, your brain does me no good as it is not real. But don’t worry, D. If I were a fictional zombie, I’m sure I’d find your brains quite tasty.

D: Gee A, I think that’s the nicest thing anyone has ever said to me.

A: I will never understand you.

Adventure with us: At Deanz Doodlez

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A: The talented Dean at Dean’z Doodlez was kind enough to invite me to be a guest for his Guest Blogger Sunday feature, where Dean asked his guests to tell the tale of their journey into self publishing or writing itself.

D: So, have you really been writing for 20 years?

A: Yep.

D: Wow, you really are old.

A: This coming from the 1300 year-old Pict.

D: Indeed. I know from old, A. Say, is that a white–

A: Well, I think we’re done here. Head over to Dean’z Doodlez, read my guest post, check out his new book and peruse his great artwork!

Author News – Quentin Hide and the Evil Lord Twigton

deanbookA: Hey D, Check this out!

D: A? What are you doing back here so soon? Wasn’t there supposed to be coffee in your future? Aren’t you still recovering?

A: Coffee can wait—

D: Who are you and what have you done with A?

A: Very funny, D. No need to call the authorities – the coffee is brewing.

D: Well all right then. That sounds more like my overly-caffeinated author.

A: Some days, D . . .  As I was saying, indie author, Dean Kealy – of Deanz Doodlez – has released his first novella, Quentin Hide and The Evil Lord Twigton on Amazon for $0.99. Check it out!

 From the Author:

Young Quentin Hide has just graduated from the Dragon Academy of Knights and Warriors, and with a new quest in his pocket, he’s off on his first adventure, but little does Quentin know, this may also be his last!

Quentin Hide and The Evil Lord Twigton was first seen on the blog: deanzdoodlez.com but you can get it on Amazon in all its glory with never-before-seen illustrations included!

Promptings From Beyond

adventureswithD-final (1)D: From beyond where, A?

A: The grave? Sanity? Saskatchewan?

D: . . .

A: Oh, lighten up, D – It’s Halloween Week. I love me some spooky fun and as it was my turn to do the prompt for the Community Storyboard, I did what I could.

D: If you also like spooky fun, as A calls it, head over to the Community Storyboard for your own dose of haunted inspiration with this week’s prompt.

Adventure with us!

I’m not much a reblogger. That’s why I have the tale-telling (Spooky Sagas is our latest edition) and a plethora of links in most of my posts.

Yet I’m an editor at the Community Storyboard, an associate editor at Green Embers Recommends, as well as a contributor at the Rome Construction Crew (a very bad contributor who just likes to talk about how cats killed the internet). I’ve always wanted a different way to share those posts and stories with you, and that’s where Green came in.

I saw Rarasuar’s ‘On the Road‘ graphic and said – yes! That’s how it’s done. So, I commissioned Green (yes, he takes commissions. Yes, he’s awesome. Click on that link; you won’t be sorry) to do a graphic of D and me setting sail for other lands/blogs to tell our tale.

And this is what he came up with:

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Isn’t it spectacular?

This was my first email this morning and on top of finally (finally!) getting the first six chapters ‘right’ on Part 2 and making significant headway in the edits for the book, this made my day. And it wasn’t even 9 am! Add to that a Halloween get-together (I am going to rock the Bellatrix Lestrange costume, thank you!) and my day is looking pretty darned fabulous.

Thank you, Green!

You know who else takes commissions? Dean at Deanz Doodlez. He’s also awesome. Check him out! 

Storyteller spins spooky sagas

D: Where can we get some trumpets?

A: Trumpets?

D: You know, for the fanfare.

A: Why do we need fanfare?

D: For our spectacular tale-telling of course.

A: Our? Are you actually including me in the circle of your glory?

D: . . . maybe. Don’t get used to it, though.

A: Oh, never would I ever, D.

Prompted

A: Frost was this week’s prompt at the Community Storyboard – and once again, you all delivered. Check out these entries.

D: And take a gander at A’s response, Little Jack Frost

A: Not to mention, D’s take on Queen Creative’s Prompts for the Promptless, Johari Window

Halloween Tricks and Treats

Scary-Jack-o-LanternD: and for your spooky enjoyment,

A: A list of the weird,

D: the creepy

A: The haunting

D: The family-friendly

A: And the spooktacular!

D: is that even a word?

A: It is now.

D: Indeed.

 

 

Self Publishing News

A: The state of self-publishing

D: By people who know what they’re talking about.

A: Are you admitting that you aren’t an expert on something?

D: Make a note of this day, A. It will never happen again.

Such a tease…

Prodigy Cover FinalA: Check out Melissa Janda’s teaser of Charles’ Yallowitz’ 2nd Windemere book, Prodigy of Rainbow Tower.

D: And a little bird tells me that the venerable scribe of Windemere will have another book out, just in time for Halloween, as well as the third Windemere book, Allure of the Gypsies in December . . .

A: Stay tuned for more information on that!

The Published Set

D: Did you hear the good news, A? Jack’s book Ranger Martin and the Zombie Apocalypse reached #1 for Children’s horror on Amazon.

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A: I did hear? D, I told you that myself. Weirdo.

D: Oh, right.

A: You were distracted by zombies again, weren’t you?

D: Maybe.

A: (Eye roll)  Right. Anyway –  Congratulations, Jack!

D: Meanwhile, SK Nicholls, author of Red Clay and Roses, has been hard at work revising and editing her book – and the updated e-book is available now on Amazon. If you haven’t looked into this ‘fact-ion’ book yet, now is your chance!

A: Did you just use a made-up word?

D: Maybe.

A: Wonders never cease.

D: It’s Halloween time, A – the veil between the worlds is thin. All sorts of weird and wonderful things can happen now.

A: Speaking of wonderful, not only was the delightful Andra, at The Accidental Cootchie Mama published in Echoes in Darkness but she also has a piece in the latest edition of Precipice. Congratulations, Andra!

Help

A: Help CN Faust get the word out on The Hollow Living!

Read Tuesday

D: Are you ready for Read Tuesday, A?

A: I’m ready to give books as holiday gifts, but seeing as how I’m not published, personally I will not be participating.

D: Well, just because you aren’t participating, doesn’t mean you can keep all the secrets to yourself. Talk about selfish.

A: What?

D: You heard me.

A: Um. . . I’m not keeping secrets – if authors want to know how to get their books on the Read Tuesday catalogue, all they have to do is visit the Read Tuesday site.

D: Oh.

A: Are you okay, D? You’re acting, I don’t know, kinda funny.

D: It’s this Halloween thing, A. And your party . . . I – I’m not so sure I can cope with all the spooks and the ghouls.

A: They’re not real, D.

D: So you think, Miss I-grew-up-in-a-haunted-house.

A: Okay, those are real, but the ghouls? Not so much.

D: I’ve been around longer than you, A. I’ve seen things.

A: I’ve seen things too, and believe me – ghouls ain’t got nuthin’ on me before my first cup of coffee.

D: Huh. Good point.

Wild Weird and Wonderful

A: Speaking of the weird, wild and wonderful, check this out from Time magazine – Alien Earth: Our Planet from Above.

D: We were speaking of wild, weird  and beautiful?

A: Yes. You’re wild and weird

D: Oi—

A: And I’m wonderful.

D: (Eye roll) Indeed.

New to me

A: Mrs. God by Mark Evans. I bought the book but it’s going to have to wait for several others. That said, I’m looking forward to reading it and had to share this new-to-me blog and author.

D: What about new to me?

A: D, you were born in 668. Everything in this time should be new to you.

D: Hmph – everything that’s old is new again, A.

A: Why do I even speak to you? Twisty twisty twisty, D.

D: Twisty?

A: Twisty.

D: Ah, ever the eloquent writer.

A: Goes along nicely with the pedantic character, don’t you think?

D: Touché, A. Touché.

Enjoy the beautiful things in life.

Remember to enjoy the beautiful things in life.

We don’t need to do it all

A: We’ll leave you with this article from Nourished Kitchen – three days in the life of a real-food advocate, writer and blogger. It’s a lovely reminder not to feel guilty for not doing ‘it all’ or doing it the ‘right’ way all the time.