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! 

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Using history and The Burning Times in my novel!


 Ah, yes! Nothing like an action which was all too prevelant in Mediavel Europe. Burning witches! That went on for hundreds of years all over Europe. Salem, Mass. got into the act with their own brand of lunacy which at least didn't involve burning. Rocks were laid upon something like a door which was pressing upon the chest of some hapless local inhabitant. There are very interesting documents which show, particularly in Salem, how an accuser's land increased when the accused neighbor was no more. Human nature can be so fascinating.

Okay, so why blog about that now? It has to do with my work in progress. If people were accused of witchcraft, their cats perished along with them!

Here's a quote which put me off the coronation of QE1, Somehow I don't think it would have been depicted in the Cate Blanchett films about Elizabtheh 1.:

Last Saturday the coronation of Queen Elizabeth was solemnised in the city with mighty bonfires and the burning of a most costly pope, carried by four persons in diverse clothing, and the effigies of devils whispering in his ears, his belly filled full of live cats, who squawled most hideously as soon as they felt the fire. The common saying all the while was [the cats’ screeching] was the language of the Pope and the Devil in a dialogue between them.”

https://alphahistory.com/pastpeculiar/1677-londoners-burn-live-cats-wicker-pope/

How horrible. It's one of the issues that I am researching for my book because it's relevant to the plot. Cats feature in my book as they try to help a victim of war. 

My cats know all these things as do their human friends. Very special, heroic humans, I might add! 

I love history and have incorporated it in my novels and I do no less in my new book. History, even if one is writing a contemporary novel, has shaped the world and us in it. Things happen because of it. 

Hatred, bigotry, religious intolerance are integral to my plot and characters. 

I think fiction would be shallow and pretty meanignless without demonstrating why things have happened the way they have. History and events in it are, for me, the impetus for getting my story off the ground. It not only has to be off the ground it has to fly, move and affect the reader!

As one of my cats, in the book says, "I have always made allowances for humans because they are so incapable of being fair sometimes." 

Cats can be difficult, even the cats know that, but they aren't in the position to incinerate entire populations of human beings just because they feel they ought to. 







Saturday, November 24, 2018

Dump the negativity!


Some people are crabby! You don't need them! No one does! I've learned that!

One of the most important factors in writing or staying with any project you might be doing is to get rid of all the malignant garbage, dust and negative thinking.

If you know a great many people, you've probably already run into the emotional messes that are contrary, spiteful and just not necessary to interact with. You can always tell you've encountered someone you need like an infection, when you feel you've walked through cobwebs. You can continue to move, but the cobwebs stick to you. You brush them off but more often than not, you have to shower.

I've known people that, for whatever reason, are detrimental to my well being. I have written about them and enjoyed the release it's given me.

Writing is a committment. It's to be done day in, day out. I'm just writing now, but I thought I'd do this post. I do want to blog regularly again because I feel more up to it.

Writing is hard enough without having to deal with people you don't need around you. This, I've discovered and although, it seems straight forward, it might not be. I would say to make it a priority. I'm going to be pretty strict about who and what influences me.

I don't want to dialogue with negative people. I don't owe them anything, not even my time.

Friends are important, but remember, if you think your friend is negative, and you're constantly getting annoyed, that 'friend' is no friend!

Chances are they'll attach themselves to other victims and stay there, for whatever length of time they can. Most people that are chosen by negative folks get fed up and move on. It's the logical thing to do.

You can always move on without being rude, remember that!

Forgive me for the short post. It's all I had time for today. Stay tuned.

See you soon!


Thursday, November 8, 2018

About My Work and Me


Sasha when she came into my life!
It's been a long battle and I'm winning. Many of you know that I suffered a life-changing event, the death of my husband just three years ago. I've had gains and setbacks since. Good days and horrible days. But I'm still here and still fighting. New work is coming, I'm writing it so I know, it's just taking long.

Thank you for your interest in my work. If it hadn't been for that, I'd just have stopped.

I hope to be blogging regularly. And I will make it as interesting as I can!

Here's a post I did some time ago, but it's pretty relevant:

If you have several books out, you are going to face this dilemma often! Imagine what Stephen King goes through! Okay, I can't either. But he doesn't have to push! I do, you do, most of us do.

 So which of my books do I target? I have my series, The Blackstone Vampires sold singly (each book)--The House on Blackstone Moor, Unholy Testament - The BeginningsUnholy Testament - Full Circle and The Fourth Bride (of Dracula). The series is sold as a box set as well: The Blackstone Vampires Omnibus.

My publisher, Creativia decides when the books are on promotion, by the way.

Justine: Into the Blood is also out as are House of Horrors and Circus of Horrors .
My newest release is I, Bathory Queen of Blood, the real life 'Countess Dracula', born Erzsebet Bathory, a countess with absolute power, she bathed in blood because she believed it would keep her from aging. She did a lot more and the book comes with a warning! She is my fave villain now! And as a new release, I am busy promoting.

This is done along with reading and working on my WORK IN PROGRESS. Everyday I sit down at my laptop and wonder which I should target. It's not an easy task. I try to make my posts as interesting and spam free as I can. I also feel readers don't want constant in-your-face 'BUY MY BOOK' stuff that's why I very often offer free reads. Each story I offer has appeared in an anthology.

I almost always promote Circus of Horrorbecause it's close to my heart. It's a horror novel with murderous clowns (among other quaint characters), but as my novels are character driven, and I am fussy about motivation, I gave reasons for the murderous mayhem. Given enough abuse, especially in childhood, the victims are damaged. How they handle the effects of that damage gave me their individual stories.

So there it is. And by the way, this is my author page at Amazon which not only lists my novels, but the anthologies I am published in as well!

ps Sasha does help! She is my friend and my muse!



Well, here I go! Happy reading and writing, all!

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Latest Book Update!



I'm working on something I am pretty excited about. It's not horror, it's fantasy, animal fantasy. But not a children's book.

There are heroes and villains, history, characters you won't forget and so many surprises and plot twists, you won't believe it.

It will make you think differently about most animals that are pets and those that usually aren't!

I know it's taking long and I do apologize, but I am doing a great deal of worldbuilding.

It's fun but it's hard work too, as this is my first book after my sudden bereavement. Please hang in there, it's coming!


Wednesday, July 4, 2018

PETER PAN AND EDDIE!



A FREE STORY FOR  YOU!

No one bothered with him. They ignored the old man. It was the tourists that fell for his story telling.

He had been coming into the Golden Crown for over thirty years. Well, it was an old London pub listed in most guide books as ‘quaint’ and historic, having been frequented by many a rascal, including one or two infamous highwaymen. In other words, it drew tourists which is what the old man wanted.

He had this thing he did; if folks bought him a drink he had this story he’d tell. On a night like so many others, he sat quietly waiting. It was early and there was a lot of time to inveigle someone with his tale. There were those who didn’t bother with them but there were enough that did.

Suddenly, the door whined opened and a young man walked in. A tourist all wide-eyed and ready to listen had entered. He hadn’t gone two steps when the old guy went into his routine:

“For the price of a pint lad, I will convey to you the most amazing story you have ever heard!”

The young man smiled and thanked him. But he begged off. He wanted to read his guide book. “I’m checking out the sights, sir. I haven’t much time left on my vacation.”
“A tourist! Where do ya hail from?”

“New York.”

“Not really! And what do you think of old London Town?”

He liked it.

“Have you seen all the great sights?”

He said he was trying to, but doubted he would get to all of them. “I only have two more days,” he confessed. “I wish I had more!”

The old man shook his head sadly. “That’s sad. You’ll miss a lot. Tell me, have you been to Kensington Gardens?”

The young man indicated he had not been.
“You don’t mean to stand there and tell me you ain’t seen the statue of Peter Pan, do you? Well, for the price of a pint I will relay to you the truth behind the statue!”

The young man nodded. "I would like to hear it!"
“Do sit! Landlord!”

The pub owner smiled. “A pint of larger for you and for the young gentleman?”

It was to be two pints.

When the young man asked about Kensington Gardens, eager to make note of what so distinguished it as not to be missed, his drinking partner told him to wait. “I’ll come to that. But there’s the tale first that will connect the whole thing up. Shall I proceed?” he asked.

“Please do!” the young man replied.

The old man smiled. “Right you are. This happened some time ago, turn of the century you see. Well, there was a midget called Eddie Bunting what worked in a freak show they used to have down in Whitechapel. Quite the character, he was, too. Always talking about things he had done and places he had been. One of the things he claimed was that he knew James M. Barrie, the writer…what wrote that dear little story known to all the world as, Peter Pan!”

The young man was enthralled.

The old man took a sip before continuing. “When Barrie first laid eyes on him he was incredulous, he kept asking him how old he was. He did this because Eddie didn’t look like a man or a midget. He looked like a boy of seven or eight—ten tops! Eddie was truly amazing. And if Barrie was impressed with that, Eddie was stunned that Barrie was a writer.

“No kidding!” He exclaimed. "I never knew one.”

“Well you know one now,” Barrie replied.

See really, Eddie was hoping that this writer bloke would write about Eddie’s life story—where he was born and how he coped with being a midget, cause folks is cruel sometimes to special people and the like.

To make a long story short, Barrie goes to see the act—in this show. It wasn’t much of a show, but it was different than some because there was a magician called Hook—no one ever knew his real full name.

Hook was a scary bloke, in fact most folks preferred to have nothing to do with him. Still, everyone has a story about them and Hook’s was sad. His life had been rougher than Eddie’s, even. He had lived in the streets since he was a kid. Begged and even faked a handicap, a hook if you will. That was how he came to get a certain famous name!

By the time Eddie joined the show, Hook had at least a dozen other midgets. He was barely breaking even when he had an idea on how to rake in more money. He decided to make the midgets look magical. In Eddie’s case, he made it look as though Eddie could fly! It was an old circus-fairground trick, you see.

As for Barrie, he was very impressed with Eddie, felt sorry for him; but Hook scared him. The more interested Barrie seemed to be with Eddie, the more Hook thought he could profit from it. When Hook showed up one day at Barrie’s house and scared the hell out of Mrs. Barrie, Barrie decided he would have nothing further to do with Eddie. He paid him something, but poor Eddie was very ill.

Barrie insisted on getting a doctor, but it was too late, Eddie was dying. Still, Barrie showed him the story he had written about him. But Eddie was sinking fast. He died not a day later, poor little chap.

There’s a funeral, a nice one, right posh it was, with horses and a fancy hearse all paid for by Barrie. But that wasn’t enough. Barrie intended to honor Eddie with the story he wrote but was warned that Hook would profit.

So Barrie goes and has it published – after changing the whole thing around. He also paid Hook off because he wanted to take all the midgets to some kind of haven he knew about in Ireland; some place the poet, Yeats used to write about, where the little people always welcome other little folks needing a home and understanding.

Hook goes along with it because he’s lost business without Eddie and doesn’t give a monkey’s. Now one more thing; and this I know for a fact, Barrie’s greatest joy was to see a statue of Eddie put up in Kensington Gardens. Everyone thought it was Peter Pan, but it wasn’t. Barrie knew that. “A right good likeness it is of him too,” he always said.

The elderly man had at last finished the rest of his pint.

“And how do you know all this?” the young man asked.

“I knows sir, because I am Hook, a haunted man who attempts to exorcise ghosts by recounting the story of Peter Pan and Eddie, God bless ‘em!”


© Carole Gill copyright 2014

Thursday, June 28, 2018

EVIL DESCENDS, MADNESS FOLLOWS



What would you do if you came home to find your family had been slaughtered?

Rose Baines discovers the carnage. Having lived with an insane, incestuous father was bad enough. It was just as well that he killed himself, but why take his wife, son and two young daughters with him?

This discovery is so horrific, madness descends and Rose is incarcerated in two madhouses. As the novel is set in Victorian England, a madhouse is the only option.,

Thus begins Rose's story. You can be with her as it unfolds. You will question why her doctor wishes to send her to Blackstone House to be a governess. You see he is so adamant. Perhaps she's not ready. Perhaps...!

~*~

Book 1 in The Blackstone Vampires Series begins the award winning series.
All four books in the series are priced at $2.99



You can buy all four novels as a boxed set for $3.99




AMAZON


"92 Horror authors you need to read right now'

Carole Gill -- the Blackstone Vampires series

~Charlotte Books EXAMINER
.
"In the attempt to find the just measure of horror and terror, I came upon the writing of Carole Gill whose work revealed a whole new dimension to me. The figure of the gothic child was there. Stoker's horror was there. Along with the romance! At the heart of her writing one stumbles upon a genuine search for that darkness we lost with the loss of Stoker." 
~Dr. Margarita Georgieva ~ Gothic Readings in The Dark

Best Horror, Best Villain (Eco) The House on Blackstone Moor
~eFestival of Words 2014

"Worth its Weight in Blood"
Indie Reader

"Top 10 Books 2013"
~All Things Fantasy 

"I for one found this gloriously gothic, refreshingly brutal, honestly horrific and a great read." 

~Taliesin Meets the Vampires

Friday, June 22, 2018

CAN A SMILE HIDE EVIL?


I don't really think it can. I think evil is worse when a smile is its cover. This is so, in my opinion, because real rotteness, honest to goodness (?) horrifying evil, is impossible to hide. It is detectable in so many ways. When it slips into a disguise it fails.

This is one-to-one evil I'm talking about. Personal and in the room with you. The stuff of horror films and books!

I've encountered evil along the way and shrugged it off, but sometimes, it's so potent, so in your face, it can't be ignored. If that ever happens and you're a writer or artist--observe it! Analyze it for future reference. Let its horrific image stay with you so you can use it creatively. Whatever you do, know evil for what it is, because when you do, you take its power.

All writers do is observe, we have a great big world in which to learn so much! And everything learned, becomes a library from which we can draw resources!



Monday, June 18, 2018

WHEN THE FAMILIAR BECOMES TERRIFYING


I think that's what the basis of Stephen King's genius was, turning horror on its head. Showing us the familiar can be fraught with nightmares!

Salem's Lot: No need to go to Translyvania for a good bloody dose of vampires. No! They come to a town that looks familiar, a town you kind of 'know.'

You start to wonder about that. About some monstrous being arriving on the proverbial doorstep. Your mind spins off into all sorts of directions as you think monsters can be anywhere! They can be on the train you take late at night. Perhaps in the last car. When will they come forward?

Creep comes to mind. A young woman finds herself locked in London's Underground Tube Station late at night. There are some horrific goings on there and the worst nightmare she can imagine.

I do remember an earlier film than Creep though. Death Line or Raw Meat (US). The gist of this grisly horror flick was there were cannibals existing on London's Underground.

Frankly this film was more horrifying (I thought) than Creep. A very interesting film if you haven't seen it.

The idea of something being out there, something dangerous, lethal--horrific is horrifying. And when it can be in your town or city it is terrifying.

Vampires next door? Zombies waiting to get you as you walk your dog. Maybe they're hiding in the back of the car. That's right check the rear view mirror now!

Creatures like Pinhead might be lurking in the washroom at work. And let me tell you if you ever pulled a night shift in a hospital or hotel it's damned scary and if you are a horror fan your imagination might cause you to think of some horrible things!

pinhead photo: pinhead pinhead3.jpg
Is there something under the bed in an empty hosptial room, waiting for you? Are you sure those are security guards and not zombies?

I think the fear of something lying in wait for us within our own environment is the most terrifying nightmare I can imagine.

But, hey! That's silly, right? You never would think twice about opening a closet or turning the lamp off and going to sleep. You didn't really hear anything outside your door. It's the house settling.
That's right, just go to sleep.  
HAPPY DREAMS!         


Monday, June 11, 2018

New Writers, Some Good Advice!




I was inspired to do this post. Please read the source of the inspiration: ORGANIZATION AND THE 500 CLUB

It's the best advice I've seen in a long time for new writers. Each step in the journey to getting your work out there is a challenge. Just writing for yourself, no matter how good you are isn't going to get your name out there.

What the post suggests, is to write 500 words of first draft quality--in other words 500 words that are nearly good enough to submit. Not 500 words that aren't up to that.

I am finally, after two years of zero, getting 1k-2k words daily that go into my work in progress. When I first tried to get back on my feet following my husband's death, which was about a year and a half later, I found I not only couldn't write, I found whatever I did, I had to nap after 20 minutes on my laptop. I was exhausted.

Being new to writing, is also difficult. A person builds up to it. The more you work at it, the more proficient you will be and the more likely to achieve your goals. Forget about rejection, that comes later, but!!! there is acceptance too!

Go for it, writers! Try the 500 words, get into the habit and don't deviate. You'll get there!
Best of luck!

Monday, June 4, 2018

Horror, Murder And Madness, Prophyrias Lover


I think we can find horror in the least likely of places. There is great darkness in Robert Browning’s Porphyria’s Lover. It is a tale of madness and murder; a tale offering so many interpretations it will obsess you!

One important note: porphyria is a disease but it was not identified as such when the poem was written.

Robert Browning wrote one particular poem that I find to be haunting! It is not only a work of dark beauty, it is also a puzzlement, you turn it one way in your search to unlock its awful secrets and just when you think you’ve solved it, you discover another explanation for its meaning, all of them valid.

Some background:

Porphyria’s Lover is a poem that was first published as "Porphyria" in the January 1836 issue of Monthly Repository. A possible inspiration for the poem is John Wilson's "Extracts from Gosschen's Diary", which is based on a lurid account of a murder published in Blackwood's Magazine in 1818. Browning's friend and fellow poet Bryan Procter acknowledged basing his 1820 "Marcian Colonna" on it, but added a new detail; after the murder, the killer sits up all night with his victim.

You will see that in this poem as well! Excited? Well, here we go:

Porphyria’s Lover by Robert Browning:

The rain set early in tonight,

The sullen wind was soon awake,

It tore the elm-tops down for spite,

And did its worst to vex the lake:

I listened with heart fit to break.

When glided in Porphyria; straight

She shut the cold out and the storm,

And kneeled and made the cheerless grate

Blaze up, and all the cottage warm;

Which done, she rose, and from her form

Withdrew the dripping cloak and shawl,

And laid her soiled gloves by, untied

Her hat and let the damp hair fall,

And, last, she sat down by my side

And called me. When no voice replied,

She put my arm about her waist,

And made her smooth white shoulder bare,

And all her yellow hair displaced,

And, stooping, made my cheek lie there,

And spread, o'er all, her yellow hair,

Murmuring how she loved me — she

Too weak, for all her heart's endeavor,

To set its struggling passion free

From pride, and vainer ties dissever,

And give herself to me forever.

But passion sometimes would prevail,

Nor could tonight's gay feast restrain

A sudden thought of one so pale

For love of her, and all in vain:

So, she was come through wind and rain.

Be sure I looked up at her eyes

Happy and proud; at last I knew

Porphyria worshiped me: surprise

Made my heart swell, and still it grew

While I debated what to do.

That moment she was mine, mine, fair,

Perfectly pure and good: I found

A thing to do, and all her hair

In one long yellow string I wound

Three times her little throat around,

And strangled her. No pain felt she;

I am quite sure she felt no pain.

As a shut bud that holds a bee,

I warily opened her lids: again

Laughed the blue eyes without a stain.

And I untightened next the tress

About her neck; her cheek once more

Blushed bright beneath my burning kiss:

I propped her head up as before,

Only, this time my shoulder bore

Her head, which droops upon it still:

The smiling rosy little head,

So glad it has its utmost will,

That all it scorned at once is fled,

And I, its love, am gained instead!

Porphyra’s love: she guessed not how

Her darling one wish would be heard.

And thus we sit together now,

And all night long we have not stirred,
And yet God has not said a word!


I don’t know about you but I find the poem dark and deeply disturbing.

The themes I see are madness and murder, the death by strangulation of a beautiful young girl by her deranged lover.

The gist:

There is a storm raging and Porphyria comes into the room where there isn’t even a fire.

Her lover has been sitting there, what in the cold? And if so why?

She sits down next to him and speaks to him although he doesn’t answer her, I see her as then trying to play up to him a bit by putting his arm about her waist.

She bares her shoulder; she then snuggles up to him so that his cheek is on her hair.

He knows she is his and just at that moment he strangles her, carefully assuring the reader that she felt no pain and that she smiled.

R for rationalization, I say!

He goes on to tell us she never cried out! Hard to I think when one is being strangled.

He further tells us she felt no pain but then qualifies it. "I am quite sure she felt no pain."

I imagine him possibly also thinking: “At least I hope she had no pain...”

He’s killed her, she’s dead so what does he do?

He opens her blue eyes and is pleased ‘they don’t look ‘strained.’ He then spreads her hair about her neck and gives her a ‘burning kiss’ (?!)

Charming!

He then goes on to tell us he props her head up and lets it rest on his shoulder.

And if this isn’t weird enough he lets us know that he sits with her corpse.

But it’s all okay apparently because ‘...God has not said a word!’

Please read:

I warily oped her lids: again

Laughed the blue eyes without a stain.

And I untightened next the tress

About her neck; her cheek once more

Blushed bright beneath my burning kiss:

I propped her head up as before,

Only, this time my shoulder bore

Her head, which droops upon it still:

The smiling rosy little head,

So glad it has its utmost will,

That all it scorned at once is fled,

And I, its love, am gained instead!

Porphyria's love: she guessed not how

Her darling one wish would be heard.

And thus we sit together now,

And all night long we have not stirred,

And yet God has not said a word!

I mean I like to think of myself being as religious as the next person but what does Porphyria’s lover think, does he really believe God would have made his displeasure known by telling him?

It may be of some interest to know that in Browning’s My Last Duchess a woman is also killed by the man who loves her.

Pardon my glibness but I wonder what Elizabeth Barrett Browning thought of these works.

I do agree that there are many valid interpretations; I however feel that Browning was writing about a madman who rationalized the murder of his lover.

He does this powerfully having us witness all of it through the murderer’s eyes. I find that very moving indeed to see what Porphyria’s lover saw, from his own point of view.

I also then see a deliberate choice by Browning to call the poem, Porhyria'sLOVER as it is her lover who extinguished her life, motivated by his own mad reasoning.

So in essence, Bronwning, I think, has us witness the murder of a beautiful young girl who might have only chosen to love the wrong man. A man who after killing her is still so drawn to her, so obsessed by her that he sits with her corpse by his side, unable or unwilling to let her go!

One wonders just when he does let her go.

I do not see an end to this poem either, but a terrible continuation because somehow in my writer’s imagination I see him sitting there still, in a cold, darkened room for there is no longer a fire—chilled but happy to be near his long-dead Porphyria.

But along with this I hear the sound of a battering ram. I hear too the wood splitting apart as the door is being broken down and the terrible secret of Porphyria’s Lover is about to be revealed!

 (the end)! 

Thursday, May 24, 2018

SO HOW'S THE BOOK COMING!



Firstly, I had to put this image in beecause I hate auto correct! I particularly hate it on Facebook! Ever write to someone and all of a sudden a moronic thing comes up that turns the person's name into some group or page! Okay, that aside, today's post!

SO, HOW'S THE BOOK COMING!

Well, it wanted to fly in, you know, to save time, but the airports were crowded. So, instead  it is taking a train. Of course, it does like to drive, but only if it's a scenic route. On the other hand, I did have a book that came by rowboat once, no outboard motor or anything!

WHAT DO YOU MEAN, HOW IS THE BOOK COMING?
DID YOU EVER TRY TO WRITE ONE!

Seriously, books tend to come when they darn well feel like it. They're a great deal like cats. My cat comes or doesn't according to her own wishes. She's her own woman and nothing I can say will change that.

I am working on something that I like. Liking what I'm writing is crucial. I open up the files and might cringe--but that's until I get going. Something takes over. I think of it as my work having a voice and telling me off or praising me. STICK TO IT, DON'T SLACKEN. AND FOR GOODNESS SAKES, DON'T WORRY ABOUT ANYTHING, LIKE THE MULE GOING BLIND, THE WEATHER, IF I GAINED WEIGHT, LOST SOME, OR WHAT I SHOULD MAKE FOR DINNER.
DON'T THINK ABOUT PEOPLE I KNOW, THAT WISH I DIDN'T KNOW OR THOSE I'D LIKE TO KNOW, BUT DON'T!

I used to just sit down at the laptop every day and write. I am finally back to that. And that's good.

I've read widely over the past year, different sort of books, and what I've read has influenced me. No horror for me, I went through enough when I lost my husband.

What I'm writing is giving me pleasure because it's different. A lot of it is funny, poignant and special I think. It will appeal, hopefully to a certain target readership. In other words, I'm writing a book I'd have wanted very much to read! Yes! I finally understand what that means and I'm one of the readers that is interested in this particular genre. Here I go!

SO NOW TELL ME, HOW'S YOUR BOOK COMING ALONG!  JUST KIDDING!
:)

Sunday, May 20, 2018

HOW TO BE TICKED OFF!



Just checked on a group I'm in for book promotion, only allowed to advertise your book ON THE RELEASE DAY! Holy moly! Vot good is dot???? I was first published 7 years ago so each of my seven books had one release day! That's terrible! It precludes promotion of a special offer. I get them periodically, scheduled by  my publisher.

I've been in this group for years! Just don't post there. I'll probably leave, as any published author will agree, I am sure, that one release day does not constitute a marketing strategy. I would feel just as happy to jump off a tall building than to wait for a book to be finished so I can put up a link there. I am writing a book now, and it's taking long as I'm still recovering from a life-changing loss. Heck! I had two releases of already finished books when my husband died. Those were the two releases! Oh cripes! I missed my chance! Darn it! There is nothing I can do about it.

Pardon the sarcasm but it really is called for. I think I'll write a book about sarcasm! Should also have bits of irony.

One questions the motives of a group like that. Could it be hostility against authors in general, published that is.

Oh! And by the way, the group IS NOT CALLED NEW RELEASES, I guess because that would have made sense.

See ya!

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Time is Precious



You know what? We don't have all the time in the world. I learned that over the past two and half years. But because I was wrapped up with my own grief, I didn't look beyond that,  I wasn't able to really. I have only in the past few months, surfaced as it were. I'm seeing things clearly and differently.

For example, a dear friend of mine and so many others, passed away this last Christmas. He ran a page on Facebook for me and the page became his. He was Dorien Grey, a very talented musician and the best admin one could ask for. He supported me when my husband passed suddenly. He was the sort of person we need more of.

Now, I just found out, someone I wasn't in contact with for quite some time, passed away. It shook me! We shouldn't lose touch with people. But we do, we're busy, distracted--wrapped up in ourselves, often for unavoidable reasons. I barely knew this person. I'm sorry I didn't know him better, he was trying to make a difference--people say that but he really was.

Sadly, we operate in our own little bubbles, oblivous sometimes to what's happening around us. We should at least poke our heads out once in a while to check on things, because the proverbial curtain falls and people are gone forever. Life throws us nasty curves sometimes. If you don't think so, I hope you get a little smarter.

Don't put off things, do them! Every minute we have is precious. Enjoy things now, before they become memories to be dusted off in the future.

With love

Friday, April 27, 2018

Every Day Horrors


Did you ever stop and think about the routine horrors you endure? Waiting at the bus stop and the driver doesn't stop, but sees you and the other mortified, but powerless victims, alongside you?

I always imagine they are laughing as they do that, perhaps pounding the steering wheel with mad glee as well. Those people are nuts and sadly, psychopaths make up a small percentage of the popuation. They might never kill but...they are nuts! As in different, with their own agenda.

There are also people that are odd, that are friendly and not friendly, depending on their mood. I dislike people like that, especially when there's no reason to be like that. I've grown a thicker skin and find things that bothered me no longer do, they make me laugh, if anything, because the moody blue people are so predictable.

I used to really care about people liking me but when I suffered a profound loss, I changed. I knew I would, friends said I would and I did.


Someone once said, 'don't audition for the people that don't like you.' I listened and stopped. Now I dance for those that like me and care about me.

You can't make people like you and even if you could, why would you?!

***
p.s. I have a promotion Fri and Saturday!
99 cents
AMAZON

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

when do you write?



I'm just getting back into a routine of writing. I find I write whenever I have time. Slow to wake up, I would prefer to write in the morning. But then again, evenings are good because there are no distractions.

What works for you? Whatever it is, keep doing it! It's the best way to stick with a particular project or to go back to writing after a time away, writing regularly!

I think it works by guilt. Writers, well me, anyway--feel guilty if we don't write regularly. I am writing every day now as I used to! I feel badly if a day goes by that I don't, even if I am unable to write, time-wise, I know I can write for a short period at least. No excuses. We're great at making excuses.

I've achieved the senior level of 'expert excuse maker.'

I don't wait for inspiration, I was advised by another writer many years ago to think of writing a work in progress as my job! I operated that way for years and wrote seven novels. I'm doing it again!

You will be inspired once you get a basic storyline and characters down. Characters, I always say give me my story/novel. They begin to live indepentently once that storyline is able to be visualised.
I know what I want to say, and I especially know how it's going to end. That is supremely important to me. I see the end in my head almost as a film.

I believe we put ourselves in everything we write, bits of ourselves. Our fears, hopes, aspirations. In my current wip, I am doing that in depth because the storyline is based on my own experiences.

I am certain that, that is what is meant by 'write what you know.'

In reading Stephen King novels, I have felt I knew what part of King's life he was writing about. His children, his fears for their safety, his own views of what follows death--plus his life experiences through the years. I always felt closer to him, as if I had gotten to know him.

That I feel is a gift from the author to all of us. It's giving us realism and what is better than truth in writing?

Back soon, with some more thoughts on writing!

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Work in Progress Update!





It's coming! I know it's taking long, but when you've lost everything that you valued, it's a hard battle to get back to where you want to be. Still, I am making so much progress.

I love what I am writing, it's full of light and romance. It's fanciful and fun to write. The characters are getting more real every day to me, that is, they are really coming alive.

I am researching, which I love, finding out things that are amazing and interesting.

The story is from my heart. It's the deepest truth I have ever come to terms with, actually I still am coming to terms with.

Life is so multi-faceted, there are people you can love, like and trust and there are those that you most certainly cannot. It's all going to be there.

It's going to be a story that I could never have written if I hadn't lived through it. Even though I don't really believe in an after life, I feel I'm being guided, so who knows maybe I'm wrong.

How does anyone know for certain what lies around us? What revealations might there be!

All I ask, is for patience. I promise you something very different and fresh--a gift from the heart incorporating light and love and a little magic!


Friday, April 13, 2018

EPIC 4-NOVEL VAMPIRE SAGA, $4.99!




The series spans many human lifetimes because it is the story of vampires. The saga begins in Victorian England and ends there, but takes the reader into Ancient Egypt, Rome and beyond.

You will meet the famous and infamous. Ever wonder what vampire brothels are like? Some Roman emperors liked them! Well, Caligula did, as you will see!

You will also see what sacrifice is all about. Would you give up your soul for love? If you don't think you would, you might change your mind after reading the series!

At the core of it all, is the passion of the vampire. Although, dark--it is deep. It lasts for centuries because the vampire does!

THE HOUSE ON BLACKSTONE MOOR
After discovering her savagely murdered family, Rose Baines is plunged into a nightmare of hell. She is incarcerated in two madhouses, after which she is helped to obtain a position as governess at Blackstone House. Located on haunted moorland, nothing is as it seems for the House and its inhabitants have hideous secrets. There is unimaginable horror there, and love too--love that comes at a terrible price.

UNHOLY TESTAMENT - THE BEGINNINGS
Rose and her children find themselves held captive on a ship staffed by vampires, overseen by the mad and evil demon Eco. The last time Rose saw Eco he tried to destroy the children, and now he tells her he loves her. 

“I saw you leave the house that day, Rose. That terrible day you discovered your family butchered. I saw you…” 
Eco, believing he has fallen in love with her, pens a confession documenting all sins he has committed during his immortal existence. 

From Ancient Egyptian vampire cults, Roman vampire brothels, The Dark Ages, The Crusades, The Black Death of 1348, on to his meeting with the child murderer and former aide to Joan of Arc, Satanist Gilles de Rais, and concluding with his wicked, blood-soaked affair with the Blood Countess herself, Erzebat Bathory. The pages are filled with debauchery, vice and murder – how can one stained with so much blood and evil possibly be trusted?

UNHOLY TESTAMENT - FULL CIRCLE
Vampiric orgies and satanic rites fill the pages of this book. All of the hideous secrets of Blackstone House are revealed. Every evil that Rose Baines was subjected to is closely examined, as are those who committed the worst sins against her.

Rose and her children's ordeal continues. They are still held captive on a ship staffed by vampires, overseen by the demon Eco.

There are more blood-drenched confessions to read. Rose has no choice but to finish the journal. Eco, mad and as unpredictable as ever, can snap at any time. But will he? 

The rest of the journal tells of the sick and twisted obsession Eco has had for Blackstone House's former mistress, evil and debauched Eve Darton. There are aristocratic devil rites, both in England and France, including satanic sacrifices. There is the Great Fire of London 1666, plagues, vampire destroyers, witch hunts and resurrection men who supply a necrophile doctor. 

The novel comes full circle as all the hideous secrets of Blackstone House are revealed, as are the reasons Rose’s father killed himself and his family. 

Eco, first seen in the previous book, has documented all of the sins he has committed during the course of his immortal life. Trying to get Rose to forgive him, he forces Rose to read his journal by holding her children hostage.
Dracula makes his debut. He is a friend of Eco's. He and the other vampires have killed a child's mother.  The dying mother begs Rose to take the child and she does.

THE FOURTH BRIDE
Dia, the child Rose adopted grows to adulthood and marries. But after the tragic and sudden death of her groom, Dia, cursed by Dracula as a babe, is taken to his castle. Once there, she is seduced and turned by the count and becomes his fourth bride. The other brides are to be her sisters. All are to love and feed upon one another. Dia's tale is full of erotic sex and graphic violence. It is a tale of love and lust but mostly of blood, for the blood is everything.

REVIEWS

2014 - Amazon Bestseller in Dark Fantasy - THE BLACKSTONE VAMPIRES OMNIBUS
2015 - Amazon Bestseller in Vampire Horror - THE BLACKSTONE VAMPIRES OMNIBUS
AWARDS:

"92 Horror authors you need to read right now"
Carole Gill -- the Blackstone Vampires series
~Charlotte Books - EXAMINER

"In the attempt to find the just measure of horror and terror, I came upon the writing of Carole Gill whose work revealed a whole new dimension to me. The figure of the gothic child was there. Stoker's horror was there. Along with the romance! At the heart of her writing one stumbles upon a genuine search for that darkness we lost with the loss of Stoker." 
DR. MARGARITA GEORGIEVA ~ Gothic Readings in The Dark

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

RANT! PUSHY WRITERS!



TIME FOR A GOOD OLD RANT!

 I don't like links in direct messages on Facebook or Twitter, ESPECIALLY AFTER A PERSON HAS JUST 'BEFRIENDED' ME!

The second awful thing was to ask me, 'what do you write?'

HELLO!!!!!!!!!!

Use your eyes, are you so self-absorbed in your overly aggressive sales pitch that you actually haven't bothered to see all the books I have out there?! They're on my facebook profile and author page and  twitter.

Poor you! Maybe you thought by moving too much, fingers, head--you would get whiplash. Or is it possible you broke your fingers so you can't use a keyboard to google anything?

I think not because you were able to type and be pushy.

You have the nerve to ask for someone's 'friendship' and then flog your books! Ugh!

Major no, no as it results in instant unfriending. 

Get real, pushy people. Market like the rest of us. Don't be disrespectful and use people. You turn off professional writers and I would think obliterate any chance of a sale.

My advice is to be professional, have respect for yourself and others.
You won't do it a second time to me, that's for sure.

And no, I won't share your link. That's a given.


Tuesday, March 20, 2018

In Cold Blood is that! It's also a non-fiction novel



That always intrigued me, 'a non-fiction novel' How can a novel be non fiction. It can, read the book and you will see.

It's not written in a dry way, it's a novel with the pace of a brilliant crime novel. And why not do it that way? Capote trail blazed with this book and good for him, I say!
A book first by Truman Capote, this horrific case was soon made into a film; an exceptional film. The four members of the Clutter family were blown away one November night in 1959 by two drifters. There was supposed to be a fortune they were going to come away with. Dick Hickock was sure of it. He told his friend, Perry Smith about it and the two wound their way to Holcomb, Kansas.

They were told there was a safe there, and they couldn't miss. It was a sure thing. I'm re-reading the book now. It's unsettling to say the least. The depiction of the killers is so sharply done, I felt I was there. The Clutter family are entirely opposite to their killers. As different as evil is from good. Yet, that being the case, I can see, and I think you will too, Capote has given us such a detailed account of the killers' lives and backgrounds, we can understand how messed up they were. Though Hickcock came from a nice family, Smith's background was so dysfunctional, it scarred him. Two of his siblings committed suicide and the other didn't ever want to see him. The suicides were before the Clutter murders by the way.

A homicide detective once told me 'no motive is a motive' . I agree. Supposedly the Clutters were going to be murdered from the start, so as to have no witnesses. I think Perry Smith who actually did the killings hated this family, particularly the father for inhabiting a world he could never know.


Capote could not have titled the book better, it's 'in cold blood.' In fact, it doesn't get colder or more unfeeling than this. There isn't even the passion of hatred--or is there?

I happen to think there is a lot under the surface. These two killers are from society's underbelly. They see the home and the land it's on. They know they don't come from this world the Clutters inhabit.

There's a lot to resent then. I happen to think it's almost a relief when the first shot is fired.

He's very polite. He was quoted as saying he thought Mr. Clutter was a real gentleman up until cutting his throat. How nice. That warms the cockles of my heart, how about you?

Their backgrounds are sad. I felt a little sorry for them. But then again Robert Blake's acting as Perry Smith is so exceptional, that possibly that had something to do with it. Scott Wilson as Dick Hickock was also excellent, I mean they became the characters.

The film was shot in Holcomb, Kansas and some of the settings are so real, they cause discomfort. The Clutter residence where the murders took place is used. That was painful, but I suppose it added to the hard-hitting realism of the film.

There is a fictitious reporter who is actually a Capote-like character. The investigation is gripping, we want these guys caught. They are and it's a relief, so are their executions at the end. I had the feeling that each knew, possibly for as long as they lived, they were fated for this.

True horror like the mass extinction of a nice, loving family is the worst horror I can think of. I never forgot the film. You won't either, if you haven't seen it, see it. Watch a well-made, respectful re-enactment of one of the worst mass murders ever. You owe it to yourself and you owe it to the
Clutter family.

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Forever Family


Some families are better than others!


"We are your family, they said. "It's better than no family."



The girl wasn't so sure. She didn't recall her origins but that was because she had been a foundling. A beautiful little child of two left on the doorstep of a church. The thing was, no one from the church, not a priest or nun or even the housekeeper from the rectory found her. The others found her. The ones that were caring for her now.



"We love you, we always have."



"From the moment we first saw you, we agreed amongst ourselves never to harm you."



None of them had ever had children. Some of the females longed for babies to care for, but they were not fertile. Actually, it was more complicated than that.



Vampires cannot procreate. And besides, their master said, "babies’ blood is so sweet, who wants to give it up."



"Yuck! Disgusting the newly created female replied. "It doesn't interest me!"



The master smiled at her. He was handsome, she had to admit. That was how she came to be seduced and turned.



“It won’t hurt a bit. Just relax and enjoy the sensuality of it all.”



She let herself go in more ways than one. It was nice. Well, more than nice. It was a life-changing event. She would have to subsist on blood now. That was the yucky part.



Still, there were advantages, it was nice to have aunts and uncles and cousins, all friends. This coven of vampires ranged in age from young children to the elderly. Mainly, the master had received into the fold the lost and unwanted from human society. There were females that had fled violent husbands as well as elderly that had been cared for by their violent children who hated them.



The master had been around for centuries and he still found the ways of humans puzzling. He, for example, as well as most vampires, never harmed animals or humans unless they were in desperate need of a feed.



The forest was full of wildlife they could sup from and really, they reasoned what was the difference between that and hunting?



The most surprising thing about the vampires, the girl found, was they were genuine. They didn’t lie about their feelings. You always knew where you were with a vampire. Vampires don’t talk crap. They don’t string you along or promise the moon like some people and most politicians do. And really, when you think about it, they’re both blood suckers.



The main trade off for immortality was no sunshine, but so what? With the hole in the ozone layer, who cares?



This coven the girl found was socially aware too. They were out most nights helping the homeless.



“Are you cold? Would you like a nice warm place for the night…we have soup…”



They already had an underground complex in the forest. It would become home to many of the lost, the lonely and disadvantaged. And most of all, it was free. No charge to stay. Well just perhaps a bit of what they called life sap. That liquid produced by the human body which sustains humans and vampires, that was always needed.



So remember! Family or domestic problems? Change your life forever! Get real, adjust your expectations. Live forever and stop worrying. Check out a coven near you!







copyright Carole Gill 2018






Monday, March 5, 2018

From My Head




Slowly, I am returning to what I was before my husband died. It's been a very long time for me, and no, the loss of a spouse is not the same as the loss of parents. The only loss far worse is the loss of a child.

I'm going to write weekly posts about things I feel, I am not going to drag anyone down into the abyss I've just crawled out of, believe me.

I think emotion that is strong inspires a writer to write, hence the purpose of these weekly posts.

I watched a film today about Truman Capote and am also reading (again) his masterpiece, In Cold Blood. That inspired me to write a short fiction piece.

Someone said writers are selfish, the same person also said a journalist will kill for a good story.

There was a great story the writer found. Two men were arrested and executed for the brutal, apparently motiveless murders of an entire family. The writer, with a solid reputation, researched the crime and the murderers.

Each of them, killers and author, wanted something out of it all. The writer wanted a book, the killers wanted their lives. They were each predatory in different ways. But we all are, really at least that's what I think.

After a fair amount of angst-filled introspection and a flurry of help from the writer, along with stays of execution, which had to be very hard on everyone, although more than convenient if you have a date with death, the killers were executed, the writer's work was acclaimed and rightly so.

As this is a fictional piece based on the whole matter, I'd like to think what might have happened, here goes:

The writer found himself haunted. He no longer felt alone even when he was alone. There was now a presence. It was like having a ghostlike appendage. Part of him knew something had attached itself to him. There was no doubt about it. It was there. It made him reflective, he was anyway, but now he was even more thoughtful.

There was this need to write. He wanted to at least write some other piece, something to show he still had it. That quality that he had used to such good advantage. The problem was, he was all alone in the world, despite friendships which were pretty superficial. His good friends saw he had lost something of his soul. They tried to help but couldn't.

"I can't write anymore."

He'd weep over unfinished manuscripts, over empty bottles of alcohol. He'd lie in the dark thinking and watch the ever increasing light seep in through the blinds. Another sleepless night.

When the murdered family began to appear, he begged them for their forgiveness. But they were good people and forgave, he was right about them initially. They were salt of the earth and all that.
They even thanked him for letting the world know about their sad demise. That really made him cry.

At the end of his life, he was happier than he had been. The appendage had taken over completely and he found himself one of the ghosts. He drifted into their embrace on the last night of his life.
"It's over," he said.

And it was, and that was the way he wanted it.

Being haunted is horrible, so many of us are. Being a haunted writer is even worse because when ghosts are given voices, they become reality. And that's pretty damned scary.


copyright Carole Gill 2018