Loving Spirits

Supernatural is our thing, right? So I thought I’d relay a different kind of love story for you this February. My grandmother (Momma’s mother) lived with us until I was 12 years old, and she had recently passed away.

I was in bed and heard something in the formal living room. Now the living room in my parent’s house was roughly a quarter of the house and as kids we were only allowed in there from December 15-31 each year. But there was a television in there (we were probably the first house in our town to have two televisions–Daddy sold them). My grandmother sat in the large living room every evening while the four of us were stuffed into a small alcove to watch the smaller TV. Anyway, I knew nobody should be in that room, but I was so sure I really heard something that I got up and woke Daddy to tell him. My hearing was very good, so he got up and checked. Nothing, no one else was in the house besides the family, so I went back to bed.

But the sound woke me up again and when I opened my eyes, my grandmother stood at the foot of the bed. I panicked big time, slamming my eyes shut. When I dared open them she was gone and again I made off for Daddy. Fortunately I had the world’s best Daddy and when I told him what was going on, he nodded. “That’s probably who you heard in the living room. She checked on you every night after you went to bed. What’s the problem?” His words put it all in perspective and I went back to bed. Did I tell you he was cool?

Anyway, that led me to write Wraith’s Heart all these years later–a ghost story from the perspective of the ghost. Boy, can I see Daddy’s influence there. 

I have another one I’ll share next month, but I’d love to hear about your real-life paranormal experiences. Most of the people I talk to have some sort of unexplained happening in their memory. Please share!

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Resolutions

Yep, it’s that time of year again. Do you make them? Not me, not anymore. I did pretty good last year without them, so I’ll continue that way.

I have to admit when I get to the gym every January, I have to laugh. It’s always so crowded and the people are dressed so nicely, like they all got new exercise clothes from Santa. But after a couple of weeks, they all disappear and we have room again. Those of us that have been in Water Zumba for going on two years just squeeze together for those couple of weeks. I like that some of the regular participants I see weekly are in their 80’s and they’re in the pool moving like a boss to the music. I hope that’ll be me someday.

I lost 33 pounds last year between Weight Watchers (they call themselves WW now) and exercise, but I started before the beginning of the year. I like their mind set at WW, it’s not a diet, it’s a life style. So again, resolutions don’t help me. I will admit that I have friends that attend exercise and WW with me, so I feel a responsibility to show up. That helps me more than knowing the year has turned.

Even with writing, it is a job (the best I’ve ever had!) and I’ve always had a job so I don’t need a resolution to decide to write X number of pages a day. That’s the best part of my day.

Speaking of writing, thank you for helping to make the launch of Don’t Look Back my best seller of all time (so f ar). Book 2 of the Conall Clan – Family Ties comes out February 1.

But that’s my experience. What about you? Do resolutions help you? Do you set them, keep them? What works for you?

don't look back    family ties final

 

 

The History of Science Fiction

With the passing of Stan Lee this month at the age of 95, I got to wondering about how old the genre actually is. Talk about getting bogged down in research, you can go back as far as the Epic of Gilgamesh, which is 2000 BCE, but I wasn’t looking that far back.

Scholar Robert Scholes calls the history of science fiction “the history of humanity’s changing attitudes toward space and time … the history of our growing understanding of the universe and the position of our species in that universe.” In recent decades, the genre has diversified and become firmly established as a major influence on global culture and thought.

It was more personal for me. I learned to read by devouring Superman comics. Dick, Jane and Sally held no interest for me. Man, were those kids boring! So, on Sunday afternoons Daddy would walk to town on the train tracks with my sister and me togo to the drug store in downtown Hudson and look at the comic books. They cost 12¢ back then and I still have most of them, carefully preserved now in plastic. I know Stan Lee was Marvel and Superman is DC but I love characters in both universes.

220px-Action_Comics_1    Amazing_Stories_v11n01_1937-02_0000    Amazing story

I was always drawn to science fiction, with its endless possibilities. I admit I preferred Gene Roddenberry’s concept of a peaceful future to what I read in the pulp fiction of Daddy’s basement. Scary aliens didn’t entice me, but ET and Close Encounters were made for me and I’ve seen both countless times.

It’s what drew me to write Alien Embrace. A young woman who wakes in a hospital with no memory—where did she come from and why? Throw in a little of the ecological, and you’ve got the kind of story I go looking for.

Alien Embrace Cover 5 copy

Have you been a sci fi (never SyFy!!) fan long or do you gravitate toward fantasy or paranormal? Who are some of your favorite authors – Larry Niven, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Ursula K. LeGuin, Sherri Tepper, Philip Dick, Jules Verne? Let me know, maybe there’re some out there I haven’t found yet!

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving and be careful out there if you go Black Friday-ing!

Christmas Stories Rev 03 final copy

That Paranormal Time of Year…

Okay, Halloween is almost here and the spooky is in full force.

It gets dark earlier and cool, as though a spirit has brushed past you at times. This is when I think about my experiences with the paranormal. I’ll relate one here and save some for other blogs.

tombstone in tree cropped

 

I remember one from shortly after my Grandmother, Mama Corey, who lived with us passed away. After going to bed I kept hearing something in the formal living room. That wasn’t a room I was welcome in most of the year (only after the Christmas tree went up) but my grandmother watched TV in there alone most of the time. Since she was deaf, she turned it up to a painful volume and the rest of the family watched TV on the other side of the house. (Yes, we had two TVs before the rest of the world, because Daddy sold them). I finally got up to find Daddy and have him look around. He did because he trusted my hearing, but he found nothing. I went back to bed and closed my eyes, but something made me open them again and there stood Mama Corey at the foot of the bed. Yes, I panicked and raced down the hall to get Daddy.

Now that was one smart man. He looked right at me and said, “What’s the problem? She came in to check on you every night.” Those simple words put it all in perspective for me.

I never saw her again, but I knew it would be okay if I did. She wasn’t a scary spirit, just a grandma making sure I was covered up and not cold.

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One more – there is a story I’m working on but have put aside for now. Why? Because whenever I wrote on it, a book would fall from one of my bookcases. Not a book that was badly balanced on an edge, or even the same bookcase. But something always fell when I was writing on it. Haven’t worked on it since moving to the condo after we downsized, but I’ll let you know if it followed me.

What about you? Any unexplained phenomena happen around your house? I’d love to hear about it, so please share.

Remember to check out my stories – Wraith’s Heart or Before You – for your spooky pleasure!

Wraith's Heart         Before-you-flat-med-reso

 

The Coming Fall

We’re heading toward my favorite time of year. Not quite to Halloween yet, but the heat of the summer is broken and cool evenings are finally returning. The dark comes earlier and the spookiness re-enters the world.  Man walking on a path in a dark forest with fog

It’s time for a touch of the paranormal. This term is so wide spread I always have to read the book description to find out where I’m going. It can mean anything from vampires, werewolves and gods to psychic children. Me, I’m more on the side of the kids, just a touch of the weird, something that makes you slightly uneasy but you want to keep going. And it might be real.

That’s what I write, that little twist that’s not apparent immediately. In Learning Trust, Becca Brandywine has been a psychic her whole life, but has never flaunted it, most people don’t even know. In Small Changes, Emma appears to be a normal little girl, unless you look too closely, and in Before You, everything looks ordinary, until they look below the surface.

I really enjoy that kind of story. Stephen King is the master of it, everything seems commonplace until . . . What’s your favorite flavor of paranormal? I’d love to hear from you.

Learning-Trust-Optimized-202x300 Small Changes for eBook copy 2  Before-you-flat-med-reso

Family Ties

I’m from a large family, not the immediate, I only have one sister (who also writes as PK Corey though not supernatural) but Daddy’s family was large – seven boys and one girl and they were fairly prolific. Therefore I have a lot of cousins and know them all. Can’t say I know their spouses and children as well, though I do in many cases.  (The author Carolyn Stoor Steele is one of us – check her stuff out!)

Last month was our 34th annual Cousins’ Reunion (yes 34!) and getting together with them kept sparking ideas to continue writing in the Before You world I created.

DCIM100MEDIADJI_0081.JPG  Hubby & Me 080818

Before You is definitely considered supernatural, through different from many I’ve read. I don’t as a rule write suspense or mystery but, hey, you have to break out occasionally and this story took me in that direction.

Before-you-flat-med-reso

Here’s the blurb –

When Jocelyn decides to take a two-week vacation away from the chaos of the city and work, she expects to just relax and enjoy. Instead, after taking an impromptu exit off the highway the car quits and she’s stuck in some Podunk town in nowhere North Carolina. But the scenery is great – especially the guy who tows in her car.

Noah is helping his cousin out for the afternoon at the garage and is more than pleasantly surprised when the city girl shows up needing help.

Neither can foresee what drew her to that exit or what they will uncover trying to discover what has frightened her so. But they will do it, together.

Do spooky things happen in your family? Could your grandmother see things others couldn’t? Both of mine could and it led to jokes and some uneasy glances occasionally. I’d love to hear about your experiences with the weird – who knows what it might spark!

New Paranormal for July

I’m excited about several new paranormal books out recently. These are stories that draw me and it’s been a boon month for me. I don’t write vampires but I love reading about them. (I am dipping my toe into shifter fic later this year or early next year).

Earlier in the month Awaken the Darkness (Book 8 in the Immortal Guardians) by Awaken the Darkness Dianne Duvall
Dianne Duvall released. I’ve followed this series from the beginning when I realized her guardians were protecting students from vampires on North Carolina campuses. I worked at UNCG for 22 years and this just explained so much . . .

Heaven-sent Warrior Cover
Also released this month is Heaven Sent Warrior by our own Nancy Lee Badger. This one’s a little hard to describe, but it’s next up in my reading queue so I’ll have to get back to you.

 

For me the second book in my Melting Series, The Progression will be out August 1 – following a pandemic that wiped out most of Book two 6x9humanity from a virus that thawed out with the melting of the glaciers, the people that remain are . . . changed. I love reading and writing this stuff!

And just like that you’ve got three totally different books, all paranormal and each can take you to a different place, depending on your preferences. And you can always try something new. The possibilities are endless!!