Thursday, February 21, 2019

HOW THE MONSTER BECAME A VAMPIRE




Bathory's name and her family's importance ensured she avoided trial for her crimes, despite the king wanting her put on trial. Instead, she was imprisoned in her castle under deplorable conditions, which is some comfort. This excerpt are her recollections of death and then undeath. Raised from the dead by Anton, the vampire who has fallen in love with her and cannot believe she committed the crimes she is supposed to have committed, has given her immortality.

"Time passed and I suffered, for there were months of unbearable cold. If I felt I would succumb, I soon realized I wouldn’t. Why can’t I just die, I wondered? I begged to freeze to death, but did not. No fire was permitted in my domain, no blankets or coats, the thin blanket long gone, although I did finally have a thin, torn coverlet with the smell of dog urine on it. That stink faded in time or perhaps I got used to it. Spring came. I could tell from the sound of birds I heard. That and the scent of wildflowers that grew along the castle ramparts. I knew the colors to be bright.

Why hadn’t I ever admired such things when I had the chance? My prison was actually warm in summer. What a welcome respite! Autumn less so, for it signaled the approach of winter. Did I expect better treatment? In all honesty, I did not. It was to be endured until the escape by death was at last granted to me. I became ill and old. Yes, finally—though I had no mirrors, old age had at last taken me. I could see the changes. My hair had grown long and wild, uncombed and knotted, but worst of all, I could see the grey.

Sometimes I was observed looking at it. Invariably, a voice would taunt me. “You are an old woman! You are an ugly old hag!” What followed was a string of abuse. Well, what did I expect? Indeed, I had aged. I saw my body as I tried so desperately to keep clean. I’d see my withered breasts, hanging like lifeless things. My skin sagged all over my body. I had a stink, too, as it was impossible to bathe. The best I could do was to use some dirty water I was given to drink. Wetting a rag, I’d try to keep myself clean. Only once or twice did I think of those other baths I used to have—one of countless murderous sins that had condemned me. Regret was still new to me and remorse newer still, but because I had horrific hallucinations and fits once again, when sensible, I was thoughtful about what I had done.

If I can recall a last moment of life, I suppose it would be the feeling of dizziness. I was standing in my quarters, then suddenly unsteady on my feet. I tried to grab hold of something, and fell forward with great force. There was pain...but it did not last. Blackness overwhelmed it.

There is nothing in my memory after that except just finding myself in a shadowy place. At first I thought I was dead. But then I saw you, my love, looking at me. “I am Anton...” you said. “And you must drink.” You raised a goblet toward me, plain and unadorned. I shook my head but you persisted. “You must for you will die in agony if you do not drink...”

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Oops! When Your Work in Progress Surprises You!



If you write, you might know what this feels like. If you read, you might be interested. Depsite working with a detailed outline, the characters still call the shots. I can't help it. It might be easier if they didn't.

Today, for example, I'm writing--minding my own business and suddenly I'm hearing from an important character, a confession. I wasn't going to make him a choir boy, but I didn't expect to hear about his membership in something shocking. He's not only a naughty aristocrat, I love naughty aristos, don't you! He's part of something that is really awful and answers a great many questions!

I can't spell it out other than to say, I'm amazed and I think my readers will be too!
No use guessing, all will be revealed! 

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Never Say Never!





There I was minding my own business, sitting and working on my cat fantasy novel when along comes something else--something dark and different this way comes!

Expect something more in line with what I write, however it's not vampires. It's a thriller with suspense and of course lots of horror. Also, it's historic. But you know me, it's not 'just' historic!

That's all I'll say for now, watch for updates. And as for the cat fantasy, it'll follow! This new project pushed its way in! How rude! Inspiration is like that, though!

Sunday, January 6, 2019

It's Time to Get Going!



What are your New Year's resolutions? Are you going to work more regularly on your work in progress?  I hope to!

I feel when we survive Christmas and get past New Year with resolutions and everything, we should (keyword) dust ourselves off and do all those post holiday things. Lose weight, possibly--and get going with our writing if that's what we do.

I am planning on working on my work in progress more regularly! I do have another book in mind to follow it, but that can be tricky. It's almost a fool-proof way to procrastinate and shelve the w.i.p. by jumping ahead to the other work! I've discussed this with friends and after some sniggering they say, "No!"  They know me, you see!

I'd love to hear from you if you are resolved to do more work on your writing, planning or even researching.

And meanwhile, let me wish us ALL a very happy, prosperous new year filled with determination and positive thinking! 

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

A Pre-New Year Post




I'm finally moving full steam ahead after what feels like a long, troubled slumber which has been the aftermath of grieving. We all deal with the finality of death at some point and if it's a child, it's the worst! Second to that is the death of a spouse.

I posted when I could, I wrote a bit and tried to market for my publisher. But it's been touch and go and really hard. Now, I'm feeling a lot more able and positive.

I used to enjoy using Pinterest, not just for my books, but for me! Then I stopped--couldn't do it. But now I'm in the process of updating my boards.

Here are my boards at Me at Pinterest. They're still being updated.

I hope you all had a great holiday! Will post again for the New Year.

Thursday, November 29, 2018

"Vampire Bodice Ripper!" I Like That!


                                                   "A real vampire bodice Ripper!"

I've had a lot of praise for this novel about a young woman who unwittingly becomes a vampire, but frankly I never thought of it as a bodice ripper! But I guess it is!

Justine goes from being savaged by rogue vampires on the streets of Revolutionary Paris, to being unable to die because the Vampire Prince will not let her die!

When she awakens from the first moments of the eternal undead life she will always know, she is shocked and horrified. The story takes her from crypts to freakshows to castles and a harem where a sultan not only falls deeply in love with her, he tells her a great secret that he carries.

Love comes to her again. The novel is an epic vampire tale, it tells of love, passion, lust, cruelty and revenage. Betrayal also by the first man she gave herself to.

The story transcends centuries and exotic locations.




Excerpt, Chapter 1


CHAPTER 1


"We are prisoners of our past, hostages of our heart. Yes, even those like myself whose heart no longer beats are slaves to it. Do we remember love? I think we do. For I remember my first loving or am I only recalling lust? I wonder if it matters. Perhaps nothing really matters, all the things gone before the current moment. Ah but there are so many moments in an immortal existence.


Shocked? Do not be. I am what I am, no more no less. The truth is I am a creature of the night—Blood is like wine to me, no wait. It is better than that. It is my life--alright, existence then.


Why not be honest from the first? I am Justine Bodeau, a vampire who recalls her existence now in this telling. My past has returned to offer me comfort. I am embraced by it. It feels good—though I know as I go along, I shall find certain memories painful. I wonder if I will bury them or if they will insist on returning. And when the past and present meet, when I find the truth to questions I have—I wonder if I shall wish to be destroyed for I have wished it many times. Still, I shall persevere.


I am aboard a ship sailing to a new chapter in my existence. What lies ahead I do not know. All I can do is guess and try to learn from the past; a past that included two worlds, one living and one undead.


I sit in my cabin, glad to be alone frankly, for I am able to reflect on all that had gone before. Was my existence worth so much that I cared to go on forever or for as long as I could? That was not a question to be taken lightly. There was much I would have to consider first.


Suddenly, there was a gentle knock at the door. It was Ramet. “I have brought you something…”


My dear friend Ramet—do not worry, you will know all there is to know about him in the course of my tale. He was bringing in something for me, something to take so that I would not sicken. Craving blood and doing without is not pleasant for one such as I. There is such gross discomfort when that happens. One is fraught with pain and nausea. I have felt that way many times, and it seems to me each time is worse than the time before.


“Justine?"


He came in quickly. “You must take this…”


I looked at the goblet and knew at once it not only contained blood but had an elixir he uses to restore vitality. It is the opiate of vampires as he says. We didn’t speak then, he just wished me to drink. And so I did. It tasted salty as blood always does, but there was the unmistakable taste of sweetness—too, probably from the honey I knew him to add.


“It is good, yes?”


I nodded and smiled. Sometimes I think Ramet is more like a concerned father than my friend. When I finished it he took it from me. “I will leave you now.”


He closed the door softly. Sleep beckoned, not the human sleep I can no longer recall, but the deep sleep of the vampire; sleep more like death than slumber—yet not being death it is often filled with dreams.


I undressed for I knew the cupboard would be warm. It was and small as well, still I knew if I slept on my side with my legs curled under me I should fit nicely. The darkness was soothing. There was no sound; just that of my own breathing filling the space. Soon I would be in sleep’s embrace and I would dream of the life that was mine long ago."


(end of chapter)

"Revenge, betrayal, passion, bloodshed, lust and love are just a few of the elements of this dark and spellbinding book."

"This vampire romance is rich in history, deep in blood sex and exotic locations and is very highly recommended."

"Vampires have their own allure and none more so than the female.
“An amazing historical vampire romance that must surely rank at the top of its genre.”


Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Writers: How do you outline?



Assuming you do that is! Over the years, I have found outlining to be crucial. I not only have a sense of my story, how it begins--where it's going and what the end's like--I have a sense of what the point to it all is!

My work in progress has changed a little as I am writing and planning, but I think that's to be expected. I have written seven novels and a collection of short stories. In each book I've faced this and dealt with it. As I got more experienced, I thought of the change in plot and other aspects due to the fact of the novel evolving. You sit down and start--the best thing that can happen, in my opinion, is for your creativity to dictate the story and characters. I've often thought of that as the characters becoming so real, they TELL you off!

But I want to know how others feel about this issue.

For instance, take some cats and a human being who has suffered. The cats talk about him. As they do, we see their personalities.

"I just hope he gets it together, I have my doubts."

"Don't be so negative, you're negative sometimes!"

"Look, don't criticize her!"

See, Eduard doesn't know the cats are arguing, but they are. That argument affects my story and how they act to him. They want to protect him because he's suffered a lot. There's a great deal else they do, which is at the core of the story and the reason why it exists!

Back to my question of outlining. I think having a sense of each chapter, of each character, whether they are human or not, gives me my story. It's a journey--it's a process that anyone who writes knows and understands but it's worth it. Just to get your book or story completed is worth it!

I used to say characters give you your story. They do. Give a man a gun, have him stuck in an elevator with his wife's lover and there's your story!

Okay! Until next time!