Thursday, July 29, 2010

The Lure of the Dead Boyfriend

Vampire Professor Bertena Varney has a great post about the lure of the dead boyfriend. Check it out here:

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Guest Blogger: Victoria Roder

The winner of Victoria's book is: Trixie. Congratulations, Trixie. Send me your contact info and I'll pass it along to Victoria. Thanks to everyone who participated.

Ghost Hunting

On the heels of the television show Ghost Hunters®, new paranormal investigation teams are emerging in towns all over the United States. With my own interest in the paranormal, I have recently joined Foothill Paranormal Investigations of California as an honorary member.

What can cause the hair on your arms to rise? Is it a sense of being watched? Seeing a shadow out of the corner of your eye? Perhaps, it’s a sound that shouldn’t be there but is. A residual haunt is a continual playback of a past event. The ghost will repeat an action over and over, but not interact with people. An intelligent haunt is a ghost that can attempt to communicate or interact with us. I live in a hundred-forty year old house farm house and if I thought every unusual sound was from the beyond, I would have moved out long ago. Interest in spirits has been around since the beginning of time, but it has been brought to the forefront by the fascination of the ghost hunting reality shows.

A friend shared with me, her experience in a house she rented. She could hear two men arguing in hushed voices in the basement. When she opened the basement door the voices would stop and no one was around. After moving out, she learned the two brothers that lived in the house before her, died from a murder/suicide. Although I can write spine tingling sequences of a ghostly woman in a bloody gown, singing to a baby on the porch ─ I’d probably be shaking in my boots and wanting to hold someone’s hand through a paranormal investigation.

My paranormal romance, The Dream House Visions and Nightmares received the highest rating of BEST BOOK on The Long and Short of it Reviews. It is a murder mystery wrapped in a paranormal ghost story.
Recurring dreams of a house Hope Graham's family rented when she was a child, taunt her nights with images of a woman in a bloody nightgown pleading for help. Dream sequences of children metamorphosing into rats, blood spewing out of windows, and walking across decaying bones, foretell of sins of the past and forewarn of danger in the present. In an attempt to end the agony of her sleep deprivation, Hope travels to her hometown . . . only to discover that the truth can be more frightening than a nightmare.

So, please let me know if you’ve had an interesting paranormal experience, or if you would be brave enough to join a paranormal investigation team. One commenter will be selected to receive the e-book version of The Dream House Visions and Nightmares.


I looked up and down the dimly lit street. There was no evidence of life. Nor were there any sounds. No dogs barking. No horns honking. No children playing. Nothing. I focused on the house -- on its paneless windows, weathered boards and dilapidated porch sinking into a sea of overgrown grass and weeds -- and nausea overcame me, as an overwhelming moldy odor permeated the air. The look of the house didn’t make my skin crawl; it was the essence of it.

I watched the dilapidated house -- it moved closer. Perhaps it lured me to it. I began to shiver. I looked down at the white cotton nightgown that I wore. Silk embossed flowers decorated the bodice. I was still straining to hear a sound when I realized, blood had saturated my gown until it had become a second skin.

I felt a tug on my gown. I looked down. Rae’s hair cascaded over her face as she clasped my hem through the fence. She pleaded, “Please, help me, please. Can’t you hear my children screaming?”

I struggled to get away . . .

Please visit me at to read an excerpt from my Champagne Books, April, 2010 Action Thriller release, Bolt Action.

The Dream House Visions and Nightmares is available at and Amazon

Victoria's winner will be selected and posted on Tuesday night. Stop back by to see if you won.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Photo Shoot at the Cemetery

I did a photo shoot at a local cemetery. What do you think?

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Guest Blogger: Cammie Eicher

Cammie's winner is: Vickie. Congrats, Vickie. Send me your contact info and I'll pass it along to Cammie. Thanks to everyone who participated.
The inevitable question when people hear I read paranormal romance is "Why paranormal? Why vampires? Why ghosts? Why, why, why?"

Here's the answer in one succinct word: Because.

Because I was raised on all sorts of tales of things other-worldly, from learning that my ancestors were serfs on the estate of Vlad the Impaler, the role model for Dracula to having my mom read Tarot cards at my sixteenth birthday party.

Because on many a summer evening I went with my mother and sister to the Spiritualist Church's summer camp near us for message services, where a medium relayed messages from the other side to those in attendance.

Because my older sister and I laid in the back of the old station wagon at the drive-in movies (yeah, I'm old enough to remember both station wagons and drive-ins) and watched what I'm still positive was a UFO flitting around the sky.

My parents subscribed to FATE magazine, and I grew up reading about poltergeists and spooky things that go bump in the night. My grandmother often told the story about how every time a bird banged against her window, she'd hear the next day that someone had died.

Come on, now, with a childhood like this, how could I not grow up to write paranormal stories?

My mother and grandmother were both teachers, and I was reading at age three. By the time I was ten, I had graduated to adult books. My parents were rabid opponents of book censoring and so we could read whatever we wanted, to the dismay of our local librarian.

Once, and only once, the stern and unforgiving librarian forbade us to check out a book we wanted. As soon as my mother found out, she drove the seven miles into town, grabbed the book and slammed it on the counter.

The face-off began. The librarian stood on one side, hands palm-down against the desk. My mother stood on the other.

"I want this book," my mother said.

"You're going to give it to her," Ms. Librarian said, the word "her" turning into a sneer.

My mother leaned close and said, "It's none of your business who reads this book once I leave, and you can't refuse to let me check it out."

My mother won, of course; never argue with a teacher. That's one important lesson I learned that day. Another was that whether it's reading Ray Bradbury at the age of eleven or trying to check out "The Devil's Advocate" at sixteen, don't let yourself be buffaloed by a librarian -- or else go tell your mother.

Which, of course, does not apply to my grandchildren, mind you. Huge fans of the Twilight books and movies, they're dying to read my Shadow Ancient vampires series. And I've assured them they're quite welcome to – as soon as they turn eighteen.

You see, another thing I've learned in life is that when their mama says no, it's usually in my best interest to agree.
Cammie will be giving away a University of Kentucky travel mug filled with candy and a CD of Out of the Shadows to one commenter. The winner will be selected and posted on Tuesday night. Stop back by to see if you won.

Friday, July 16, 2010

New Feature: Excerpt Mondays

I'm going to start a new feature here at Paranormality: Excerpt Mondays. If you are a paranormal author who would like to share a brief (PG or PG 13, please) excerpt from your book, send me an email:

If you're a paranormal reader, check back every Monday (starting 9/6/10). You might find your favorite authors here, or discover new authors you haven't read yet. What a deal!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Guest Blogger: Tony-Paul de Vissage

The Second Species: Vampires based in Fact

It was a lovely Southern summer afternoon — late afternoon, in fact. What the townspeople called “evening,” that time when day is turning into night and the sun begins to dim. It was around six o’clock when Warene de Vissage stepped from the dining room of the house onto the back porch, calling to her child to come in for dinner. The sinking sun was shining on the backside of the house and Warene was sheltered from its rays by four walls and a roof. Nevertheless, she could see the heat rising in shimmering waves from the sidewalk fifteen feet away on the other side of the running rose-covered picket fence. She could also feel that same heat touching her skin.

Wrapping her arms protectively across her chest, she hurried back inside not waiting for the child to obey.

The next morning, Warene awoke in agony. Her skin burned, felt hot and tight. Staggering out of bed and to the mirror above her vanity, she stared at the startling and horrorific image before her . . . skin crimson and scorched, edges curled and inflamed, blisters and scales . . . as if someone had held her over an open fire. To touch her face brought excruciating pain . . . to look at it brought tears . . . it itched, it burned . . . but she knew why.

The sun…reflecting off the pavement. Hadn’t she felt its heat? She’d dared to step outside during daylight, thinking just this once, it wouldn’t matter . . . just this once, so late in the day, she wouldn’t suffer, but though she hurried back inside, that damnable sun had still found her, and done its work.

It would be weeks before she would heal.

This may sound like the beginning of a vampire story, but it’s a true episode, taken from my own mother’s life. Maman suffered from PMLE -- polymorphic light eruption -- a condition in which an individual’s DNA cannot repair the damage done to the skin by ultraviolet rays. She was never able to go out into the sunlight without being completely covered from head-to-toe, even on the most overcast days. Long pants, knee socks, a long-sleeved shirt, gloves, a neck scarf, a wide-brimmed hat, and an umbrella were her usual attire when leaving the house . . . and still, she could be burned by sunlight reflecting from the pavement or any surface, going through her clothes to cause first degree burns.

PMLE appears to be hereditary, but I was lucky; even with my blond hair and fair skin, I can walk in sunlight with no more than the normal fear of getting a sunburn. SPF-70 sunblock and I are old friends, however, and I use it faithfully.

For most sufferers, PMLE simply causes an annoying rash but a small percentage is stricken with a much more severe case, in which they appear to have been actually cooked. It is the less painful form of a condition called XP — Xeroderma pigmentosum. Which is, in medical terms, “a skin cancer-prone autosomal recessive disease characterized by inability to repair UV-induced DNA damage.” XP suffers never come out in daylight; they live their entire lives after dark.

What does this have to do with vampires? The inference is obvious, and may be one of the ways the vampire myth began. If you were a superstititious person living in a primitive time when it was believed the sun sank into the sea every night at the edge of the world, and you saw someone actually burned by that same sun . . . someone who was only comfortable after dark and only felt he could safely come out of his dwelling at night . . . what would you think? Other opinions have been offered: premature burials, porphyria, lycanthropy. I’m certain all these — plus PMLE and XP — attributed to the legend a good many of us who are writers have used to our advantage, and I am one of them.

When I began my series The Second Species, I wanted my vampires to be different, not the usual Undead, sleeping-in-a-coffin type. So I made them a living people, a second species of Mankind, divorced from their human brothers because of their differences. They have many characteristics of the Undead but I’ve given them acceptable reasons: the entire group suffers from XP, therefore they can’t emerge into sunlight; they have allergies — the most powerful one being to garlic and certain herbs; their refusal to look at crosses, etc., is not because they are repulsed by them but because their own religion demands they not look on the sacred objects of other faiths, and so on. Understanding how humans fear them, they have hidden themselves away in the cloud-covered peaks of the Carpathians where the sun never penetrates and when they emerge into the land of humans, tragedy inevitably follows.

That is the story behind the creation of my “vampires,” based in fact, elaborated in fiction. The first novel in the series, The Shadow Lord, is expected to be released later this year by Red Rose Press. Look for it . . . you will enjoy it . . . and feel a little sympathy for those true suffers who are “deprived of God’s holy sunlight.”

I am offering a contest: In answer to the question, "How many narrators are there in the novel Dracula?" I will offer a pdf copy of Two Vampire Tales. Anyone wishing to participate should send the answer to:

Monday, July 05, 2010

I Guest Blogged!

Check out my post at the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers blog. I'm talking about rejections, promo and Amazon Kindle:

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Interview on Author Chris Redding's Blog

Author Chris Redding interviewed me on her blog today. Stop by and check it out: