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Hell Holes: What Lurks Below by Donald Firesmith

Hell Holes What Lurks Below

 

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It’s August in Alaska, and geology professor Jack Oswald prepares for the new school year. But when hundreds of huge holes mysteriously appear overnight in the frozen tundra north of the Arctic Circle, Jack receives an unexpected phone call. An oil company exec hires Jack to investigate, and he picks his climatologist wife and two of their graduate students as his team.

Uncharacteristically, Jack also lets Aileen O’Shannon, a bewitchingly beautiful young photojournalist, talk him into coming along as their photographer. When they arrive in the remote oil town of Deadhorse, the exec and a biologist to protect them from wild animals join the team. Their task: to assess the risk of more holes opening under the Trans-Alaska Pipeline and the wells and pipelines that feed it. But they discover a far worse danger lurks below. When it emerges, it threatens to shatter Jack’s unshakable faith in science. And destroy us all…

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Excerpt:

“Professor, take a look at this,” Mark said, squatting down and pointing at the nearest mound of dirt. He held his hand a few inches over it. “There are small holes, and I can feel gas escaping from them. That’s weird; it should be freezing, but it’s actually warm.” He leaned over and sniffed the air just above the hole. “Jesus, that reeks,” he cursed as he stood up and rubbed his eyes.

I reached down. There was a surprisingly large flow of gas coming out of the hole. I looked around at all of the other mounds of dirt dotting the ice on which we were standing. “Shit,” I exclaimed. “We’ve got to get the hell out of here.”

“Why?” he asked with a confused look on his face. “We just got here.”

“Prudhoe Bay natural gas is about three fourths methane. One eighth is ethane, propane, and other heavier hydrocarbons, while the remaining eighth is carbon dioxide. I’m not worried about the methane and ethane; they’re lighter than air and will drift up and out of the hole. But carbon dioxide, propane, and hydrogen sulfide are all heavier than air and build up in low areas.”

“Like the bottom of this hole,” Mark said as the nature of our danger dawned on him.

“Like the bottom of this hole,” I agreed.

Although I was breathing rapidly, it was becoming increasingly harder to catch my breath. Both were early signs of carbon dioxide poisoning. Meanwhile, my eyes were really watering, my nose was running, and my lungs were starting to burn. Hydrogen sulfide combined with the water on their moist surfaces to form hydrosulfuric acid. I had a dull headache and was becoming increasingly nauseated. Worse, the stench of sulfur had begun to disappear: a classic symptom of hydrogen sulfide poisoning. “We have to head back up and strap on oxygen tanks and full face respirators before we come back down.”

“Okay, Professor,” he replied, looking at me with concern. “You’re definitely not looking so good.”

Weak and increasingly clumsy, Mark had to help me reach the rope and secure it to my climbing harness. Then he said into his walkie-talkie, “Angela, there’s hydrogen sulfide and excessive carbon dioxide down here, and we need to get out of here right now. It’s made the professor sick, so I’m sending him up first.”

“Understood, Mark,” Angie replied, her voice indicating her concern. “Is he ready?”

“Yes, all hooked up,” Mark replied.

A second later, the rope began pulling me up. It sped faster and faster until I was practically running up the side of the hole. Soon, I was up to where the permafrost gave way to damp dirt. I slipped going over the boundary, and the rope dragged me face first over the short muddy slope. Bill helped me climb over the ridge of dirt surrounding the edge and unhooked my climbing harness.

Coughing and unable to catch my breath, I stumbled into Angie’s arms. The caustic gasses at the bottom of the pit had set off one of my ordinarily rare asthma attacks, leaving me gasping for air. I fumbled through my pockets, found my rescue inhaler, and had to give myself three puffs before my breathing became easier. Meanwhile, my eyes were still burning and watering so heavily that I heard rather than saw Bill throw the end of the rope back into the pit and use the winch to lower it rapidly into the hole. After helping me wipe the mud from my face, Angie wrapped me a bear hug, totally heedless of the muck she was transferring to her own face and clothes.

“It’s down,” Jill said, her voice amplified through our walkie talkies.

Bill stopped the winch, and we waited for Mark to tell us when he was ready to come up.

“Okay, I’m ready,” Mark said. “Bring me up.”

Bill restarted the winch, and the rope began winding itself back around its spinning shaft.

Feeling stronger, I let go of Angie and turned back towards the pit so I could watch Mark being raised over the edge. It was at that moment, through eyes still somewhat blurry from tears, that I saw Kowalski. He was standing near the edge of the hole, a few feet downwind so that the smoke from his cigarette wouldn’t bother us. He took a final puff and carelessly flicked the still smoldering butt into the pit.

“Stop!” I croaked, my voice raspy and painful from coughing.

Kowalski turned towards me, and our eyes met. Unaware of what he’d just done, he was completely confused by the expression of horror on my face.

After seconds that seemed to stretch into eternity, the cigarette butt tumbled past Mark and eventually reached the depth where the concentration of methane and hydrogen sulfide reached explosive levels.

 

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Author Bio:

Donald Firesmith Author.jpgA computer geek by day, Donald Firesmith works as a system and software engineer helping the US Government acquire large, complex software-intensive systems. In this guise, he has authored seven technical books, written numerous software- and system-related articles and papers, and spoken at more conferences than he can possibly remember. He is also proud to have been named a Distinguished Engineer by the Association of Computing Machinery, although his pride is tempered somewhat worrying whether the term “distinguished” makes him sound more like a graybeard academic rather than an active engineer whose beard is still more red than gray.

By night and on weekends, his alter ego writes modern paranormal fantasy, apocalyptic science fiction, action and adventure novels and relaxes by handcrafting magic wands from various magical woods and mystical gemstones. His first foray into fiction is the book Magical Wands: A Cornucopia of Wand Lore written under the pen name Wolfrick Ignatius Feuerschmied. He lives in Crafton, Pennsylvania with his wife Becky, his son Dane, and varying numbers of dogs and cats.

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Hungry For Love by Maya Sacher

Hungry for Love Release

 
Title: Hungry For Love
Author: Maya Sacher
Genre: Women’s Fiction, Book Club Fiction, Contemporary Romance, Family Drama
Publication Date: March 1, 2018

 

book coverElizabeth, a dentist in her late thirties, doesn’t have it all. She is coping with her husband’s coma, her unresolved grief over her mother’s death, her mixed feelings toward her stepmother, dissatisfaction with her job.

Unexpectedly, she falls in love with a musical zoo curator from Australia. He is divorced, he has a dog and a tween daughter who doesn’t want Elizabeth around.

When her husband wakes up, Elizabeth’s life is thrown into chaos. The choice before her is unbearable because she doesn’t want to hurt anyone, yet she wants to do the right thing, whatever that is. The expectations of her family and her men don’t make it any easier. What should she do? Can she have her cookie and eat it too?

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Excerpt:

As they stepped onto the sidewalk, Aidan gripped her hand as if not to let it slip out. “I love you, Ellie. You know that, don’t you?”

How many times had she wished she could give up a second, a day, a year, half her life just to once more see Mother’s beautiful smile, feel her comforting embrace? But not now. Now she wouldn’t give up a single moment, even if that would bring back Mother. How could she give this up? This joy Aidan pulled to the surface so effortlessly. This energy which enveloped her as if it could lift her off the ground. Had she ever lived to the fullest? Was this how it felt? And all because of him? Those cutest of words?

She stopped to look at him. “I know.”

Aidan cupped her cheek and kissed her, all the while holding her hand. She couldn’t stop smiling, her teeth colliding with his, grazing his lips. She wished she could capture them in a photograph, one she could go back to when her memory failed her. But her mind would have to do. Her crazy happy mind.

 

Author Bio:

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Maya Sacher is a writer, a law school graduate, an activist, and the author of a short story collection, God’s Sins, and a novel, Horny Girl, both published in Croatia.

She travels on occasion, she watches a lot of movies, and she loves a good book, especially books that make her laugh and teach her new things.

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An Interview with Maya Sacher

 

A Love Haunting by Suzi Albracht

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Title: A Love Haunting
Author: Suzi Albracht
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publication Date: December 23, 2017

 
0000 love 333 500Every woman needs a man who will love them to the end of time. A man who puts her needs before his. A man who takes her breath away with a single glance. A man who will do whatever it takes to have a last goodbye kiss.

What happens when a trio of ghosts from the 1800s and a skateboarding angel team up to help a newly-dead young husband spend one final goodbye night with the young wife he left behind? And what if a storm of the century threatens to get in the way?

Get your copy of A Love Haunting

 

Excerpt:

This short chapter in A Love Haunting begins Jordan’s existence as a Living Dead (LD). It appears a quarter of the way into the novel. It takes place after he feels he has lost his one true love and just before he meets Luke, a skateboarding angel, and the trio of ghosts from the 1800s who become his friend.

 
      Love… death… forever. That’s the story of my life apparently.
      So Emily had left the Banks. In my mind, I knew she had to go, but now I am lonelier than I’ve ever been in my life. Right after the accident, my world was devastated because of my loss of Emily, our baby and… my life.
      And then when Emily was in the hospital, I found a way to be near to her again, if only in a small way. Now she is gone and my life is really over. Now I have no one.
      Sure I could have hung around Allie, bugging her but it would not have been fair to her. Besides, she was on her way to being a nurse practitioner, and I knew she’d be a damn good one. So while Allie was in school, I was going to leave her be, but I did plan on helping her when she embarked on her new career. Besides, I wanted to convince Allie to shoot bigger and become a doctor. Being a physician was her real calling, she just didn’t know it yet.
      In the meantime, I made up my mind I was going to make the best of my new dead life, and that would require some hands-on research. Research had always been one of my strong suits. That and evaluation.
      And there was something else I wanted to research but didn’t dare until I figured out all the rules and restrictions of my dead existence. I didn’t want to lose my wife, so I was going to try to… do something.
      So since I had loads of free time on my hands, I would start by exploring to see what was what.
      
What am I supposed to do about my feelings now that I’m dead? My life can’t end like this. It just can’t.
      Wow, I hadn’t allowed myself to admit that I was actually dead until now. Dead and buried and the whole nine yards.
      Well, it’s true. I died a few feet off a highway in North Carolina, not far from my favorite vacation paradise – the Outer Banks.
      I am a ghost, and this is my love story.

 

Meet The Author:

Suzi_Albracht2My name is Suzi Albracht. I live just outside of Annapolis, Maryland which is in the Baltimore/Washington corridor. I mention the corridor because that is where all my books in The Devil’s Due collection take place. My book, A Love Haunting, takes place in the OBX, NC where we vacation every year. I prefer to write stories that take place in locations where I have spent time.

I typically write in the dark realm, that means Supernatural Horror Crime Fiction and most recently, Paranormal Romance/Ghosts. The horror books are Death Most Wicked, The Devil’s Lieutenant, and Scorn Kills. All three books are part of The Devil’s Due Collection.

My most recent release is A Love Haunting which is book one of my An OBX Hauntings series. It is a paranormal romance, a ghost story that takes place in the Outer Banks of North Carolina. This book is so much fun to write. I am taking local lore and threading it through my story. And I get to write about love in a way that my other stories haven’t yet allowed me.

I am currently working on three more books – Her Deadly Intentions which is part of The Devil’s Due Collection, Lucifer’s Queen, also part of the collection, and a second book in An OBX Hauntings series. I also have a political thriller in the works.

My books are like my children so of course, they are all my favorites but if I am forced to pick one or two, I would say Death Most Wicked and my new novel, A Love Haunting.

I love Death because it introduces Mikael Ruskoff, my favorite character. It shows his love for his family, his hatred for the father who deserted him, and his devotion to his mother. At the same time, you get to know what a dedicated law enforcement officer he is while he risks his own life to stop a child murderer.

I am equally proud of my new book, A Love Haunting, because it allows me to show a softer side in my writing. I am free to show that silly love couples have in private, the yearning love of innocents. Plus I got to play with the whole ghost concept which pleased me to no end. I’ve always been fascinated with ghosts. It was also my first book with no profanity or violence. It was like a refreshing after-dinner drink.

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Guest Post by Suzi Albracht:

This is a character interview with Luke, the skateboarding angel.

I was pleased that Luke agreed to do an interview with me. I had read the book, A Love Haunting, and was anxious to get some insight into Luke’s role. We arranged to meet at the Dune Burger in Nags Head at ten p.m. I had never been there before but felt as if I knew it from reading about it. When I arrived, Luke was nowhere to be seen. I began to worry a bit that he was standing me up.

I decided to take a seat at one of the outdoor tables and go over my list of questions for him. I had just opened my note book and put it on the table. My pen was missing so I rummaged through my purse, looking for another. Suddenly my note book slid about six inches away from my hand. I pulled it back, looking around. I didn’t think it was that windy. Oh well, I thought.

I turned to look for that pen again but now my purse was gone. I immediately jumped to my feet. I fumbled around, thinking I’d call the cops but then I remembered my phone was in my purse. And then right before my eyes, my purse materialized where it had been. I heard a faint giggle. Frowning, I grabbed it. And then it came to me.

“Luke?” I looked around. Before I could even blink, he materialized next to me.

“Dudette,” Luke said with a grin on his face.

“Hi, I am very pleased to meet you.” I held out my hand to shake, hoping Luke would oblige me. He did, but it was a high-five.

I silently appraised Luke’s appearance. Holding a skateboard under one arm, he was wearing surfer shorts, a long sleeve skater tee shirt, black Chuck Taylors, black fingerless gloves, and a silver chain with a medallion. I was dying to see what was on the medallion but felt it was too soon to get that personal.

Luke, however, is very perceptive. In an instant, I realized that he noticed my interest.

“Dudette, you dig my jangles?” Luke asked fingering the medallion. I nodded. “One of my peeps gifted me.” He stepped closer to me holding the medallion so I could see it.

“When you say peeps, are you referring to souls you have transitioned?” I grabbed my note book and pen, preparing to take notes. Luke took one look at them and began to pop-lock dance in front of me. I was taken back. Why would he do that?

I don’t know if Luke saw the look of surprise on my face or not but after a few minutes, Luke sat down at the table and put a serious look on his face. “Allie said you had some questions for me. You’re probably on a deadline… please, ask away, dudette.”

Every time he called me dudette, I wanted to fall down laughing. But I had a mission to complete.
“When you help the newly dead to transition… can you describe the feeling to me that you get when you are able to get them to Heaven?” I asked.

Luke gazed into my eyes with those big eyes of his. He leaned toward me, his face was glowing, his eyes shining. I felt I was about to hear some celestial secret. Instead, he put his thumb and index fingertip on my nose and tweaked it. I know my mouth was hanging open with surprise.

The next thing I knew, he jumped up and took my hand, placing it on his shoulder. Then he put his arm around my waist and took my other hand in his. We began to waltz around the parking lot.

I have to say the guy has some smooth moves.

Luke turned his attention on me and said, “It makes me feel like this. Like all is right in the world.”

Then all of a sudden hip hop music blared out of a new Chevy Camaro that drove into the parking lot. I glanced at Luke but he was no longer there. I must have looked silly to the driver of the Camaro because he asked me if I was alright. I suppose I did look silly dancing with an imaginary partner. I looked behind his car and there was Luke skateboarding up the street.

I would have called out to him but I suddenly had the feeling that angels don’t like being interviewed.

 
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An Interview with Jane Risdon

Jane Risdon

 
Last week Only One Woman by Christina Jones and ‎ Jane Risdon was in the spotlight here on Rainne’s Ramblings.

Today I have Jane Risdon here with me and she has agreed to answer a few questions.

 

1-image1Hi Jane, thank you for joining us.

Hi Rainne, thanks so much for asking me here today, it’s wonderful to chat with you and your readers.

 

Would you like to start by telling us a little about yourself and your background, please?

Where to begin? I met my husband back in the late 1960s when his band arrived in England to record and tour and we’ve been together ever since. We have one son who lives in California with his wife and their three children.

Married to a musician my life has never been what you call normal I guess. He recorded and toured and I held down a ‘proper’ job in the early years – I worked at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in Whitehall, and in various other government departments until we decided to go into the ‘talent’ side of the music business.

We built an International Music Management company together, managing and producing singer-songwriters, record producers, musicians and bands of all musical genres, as well as working on TV and Movie soundtracks – and on some other areas of movie and TV production too – and most things music related. We lived mostly in the USA, Taiwan, Singapore, and of course England. We’ve had some interesting adventures.

 
How did your journey as a writer begin?

I’ve always wanted to write but with our lifestyle it was never practical. Babysitting testosterone fuelled young men and hormone crazed young female singers never allowed for time to ourselves. We lived life in the fast lane, to quote the Eagles.

Back in the 1960s my husband’s fan-club secretary, Christina Jones, was also a rock journalist and short story writer for teen magazines and she knew I wanted to write and we always said we would write together one day. Trouble is I had an eye on writing crime thrillers. She went on to become a successful best-selling, award-winning author of what she calls Bucolic Frolics, so how we’d ever write together was a conundrum.

Fast forward many years and I found time to write and started – on the quiet – writing crime stories for anthologies and I began work on a few novels. She asked to read what I’d written and after some discussion we decided to get on with it and write together. By this time I was already signed with Accent Press – oddly she was also signed with them by then as she’d ended her former publishing contracts with the ‘big’ boys.

I have never written anything remotely classed as ‘romantic’ so it has been a journey for me writing Only One Woman with Christina. There aren’t any dead bodies, crimes to solve, just a rollicking good tale of two girls in love with the same musician back in the late 1960s. I cannot tell you how I itched to find somewhere to stick a corpse.

 
What inspired Only One Woman, and how did you come up with the title?

23316470_156873331586164_1681214585976771281_nInspiration for OOW (as we call it) was something that came from the ether. Christina and I wanted to write together but as I said before, she and I write in completely different genres. Finding something we could write about together seemed a distant fantasy. In 2012 I moved house and as I was going through some boxes I came across my husband’s old tour schedules, posters, fan letters, and some of our old diaries and I began to make notes. These soon became little chapters under diary date headings and before I knew it I’d written Renza’s story and it cried out for another voice. I sent it via email to Christina and she loved it and started writing her parts which turned into Stella’s story. This went on until 2014 when it went into our publisher who wanted to publish it later that summer. We wrote by email, text and Facebook messages – very 21st century! Due to various comings and goings at our publisher it has taken until November 2017 or it to be published. I learned patience in the recording studio making records and working with young musicians – just as well!

Only One Woman is the title of a single written by The Bee Gees which was a massive hit for The Marbles – lead singer Graham Bonnett went on to be a super-star with Rainbow and many other bands. In fact Graham and his girlfriend are reading OOW and he is going to write a foreword for the main Paper-back (for stores worldwide and audio) publication 24th May 2018. He just needs to find time as he is recording and touring at the moment. Fingers crossed. OOW is peppered with songs and musical references. It is about the blossoming UK music scene late 1968/69. We have our own YouTube playlists.

 
What is your favourite scene from Only One Woman? Can you give us a peek?

Gosh, now there is a question. I don’t really have a favourite scene – I love them all but how about when 16 year old convent girl, Renza, is taken by her new boyfriend, lead guitarist Scott, to a gig on Salisbury Plain with Narnia’s Children for the first time and she experiences ‘the swinging sixties’ full on. This is part way through a chapter. Renza is at an after-gig party with some weird and wonderful hippies and musicians….

Excerpt:

Renza’s Diary from Only One Woman:

June 29th 1968 – later

…A girl in a tight fitting bolero top and hipster trousers came over to us and flung her arms round Scott, kissing him on the mouth, a bit too long and hard for my liking. Scott didn’t seem in too much of a hurry to push her away, and she melted into him as if she was trying to come out the other side.

‘Scott lover, how’s it hanging?’ She sounded just like Fenella Fielding, all breathy and wanton.

‘Yeah Scott, just how is it hanging?’ I snapped and flounced off to where I could see Rich sitting on his own, hugging a beer.

‘Hi Renza, babe, what’s up?’ Rich held the glass up to me in greeting and took another drag on his ciggy.

‘Who’s that girl talking to Scott?’ I asked plonking myself down next to him on the huge bean bag. We both nearly fell off as it settled itself with my extra weight.

‘Hey, don’t waste good beer babe.’ Rich held his glass away from me as I wriggled to get comfy.

‘Rich, who is she?’ I asked again as I saw her drape herself all over Scott and nestle into his shoulder. The bitch! Scott didn’t seem too bothered.

‘She used to help Stephan – he’s the band’s manager I told you about earlier – in the office in Jersey and then she came to the mainland with her boyfriend. She’s no one important, she sometimes hangs with the band when we’re over.’

‘Hmm!’

I watched her like a hawk. Scott looked over and waved. The nerve!

Rich took a few gulps of beer and patted my leg. ‘Don’t fret about Scott, he’s mad about you. She’ll get the message after tonight.

I looked round the grubby room with its crates and boxes, and fake Greek Taverna decorations hanging from the walls, the fake fishing nets, glass baubles attached, and wine bottles with candles burning in them. And the couples seething in a mass on the floor, in the shadows, and on the cushions, doing goodness knows what, and I wanted to go home.

Actually, I wanted to get Scott to myself. Back home. In the village. Where things were normal.

‘Magical Mystery Tour’ came on and I suddenly thought about having to miss The Beatles at the Hammersmith Odeon, because I was ‘Mrs Spoffington’ in the school play, and couldn’t get out of it. Instead of The Beatles giving me the thrill of my life I was stuck on stage singing ‘Oh I do like to be beside the sodding sea-side,’ to a hall full of boring parents. Not that mine bothered to go.

‘Rich, mate, hi. Good gig. Stephan about tonight?’ A huge man of about thirty came up to us and nodded at me. ‘Want to sort some stuff out with him.’

He was wearing beads and a kaftan with an orange and green squiggly pattern on it, and had his ears pierced. His long black hair hung in tight curls around his shoulders. Mum would just love him.

‘Oh Renza, this is Psychedelic Smith,’ Rich said. ‘Remember we told you about him, he’s our fixer.’ I remembered. Apparently he was helping Stephan get Narnia’s Children a record deal. Everyone had to kiss up to him I was told. Well, thankfully, I don’t.

Psychedelic Smith dismissed me with a brief smile before turning back to Rich.

‘Stephan’s back in the smoke mate, got Top of the Pops with The White Knights, so he’s gotta be there for that.’ Rich drained his glass and put it on the floor next to him.

‘Right, yeah, going up the charts fast. That’s cool, I’ll ring him later. I’m in town tomorrow and want to arrange some record company auditions for the guys. Got some label interest.’

‘Do I need to re-organise anything for the boys?’ Rich asked.

‘Nope, I’ll sort some dates out with Stephan, he’ll let you know in good time. I’ve got some songs lined up for the guys to hear, so we’ll sort some dates for visiting publishers in town, too.’

I couldn’t help wondering what mum and Mrs Digby would say if Psychedelic Smith turned up in the village to visit the band. I giggled quietly.

Psychedelic Smith began to roll a ciggy and offered one to Rich. .

Rich shook his head and got to his feet. ‘Nah, mate, gotta drive back soon or her Mum’ll kill me if she’s not home on time, won’t she, babe?’ Rich smiled at me and looked at his watch, then went off to round up the band.

Psychedelic Smith took a few more drags and offered me one. I shook my head. I could just see me floating in the front door with Mum waiting up to look me over and make sure I hadn’t ‘been up to anything’.

‘No thanks.’

The Demis Russos look-alike shrugged and headed for the kitchen. Dad would have a blue fit if he knew I was ‘fraternizing,’ with blokes in dresses.

I knew the only reason I’d been allowed out so late with the band was because Mum quite liked Rich and he’d sweet-talked her into letting me go to the gig. God! If she could see me now, in this horrible house with everyone stoned, she’d have a migraine for a week worrying in case the village found out.

I looked at my watch. If we didn’t leave soon I was going to be seriously late and that would mean all hell breaking loose. Scott was nowhere to be seen now and Rich was chatting to ‘The Bitch’ by the food. I know it is horrid calling her that but she’s got right up my nose, wall-papering herself all over Scott.

People were still wrestling on the floor which meant I had to watch where I looked: I didn’t want to appear a Peeping Tom, though it was hard not to cast a sly glance now and again. I mean, seriously, some were actually ‘at it’ in full view. Anyone would look, wouldn’t they?

Thinking about it, how do you ‘do it’ in public without all your bits and stuff being on show? I couldn’t see anything, you know, rude or anything, but they were definitely ‘doing it’, I just couldn’t fathom how.

‘You look deep in thought,’ Scott made me jump, ‘what’re you looking at?’

Before I could answer he followed my gaze to the nearest couple. He threw his head back and laughed loudly. I blushed as if I’d been caught out doing something naughty.

‘Ah!’ he said, ‘I see.’

I felt really stupid. I could feel the heat rising up my neck to my face, thank goodness it was so gloomy.

‘Bit of an education eh?’ He grabbed my arm and led me through to what could only be called an apology for a kitchen. ‘Can you wait here while I get the others? We should leave now. Don’t move. I won’t be long.’

And off he went again….onewoman

 

 
 

Who is your favourite character from your book and why?

I have to say Stella, as she is the sophisticated, worldly, gorgeous babe Renza would love to be and she has the best scenes I think. I am sure everyone is routing for her throughout the book. She seems to have the most fun with Scott.

 
What do you enjoy most about writing…?

Reading the finished product back to myself and thinking I’ve gone as far as I can with the story and then getting feedback from my husband – poor man has to read it all.

 
And what motivates you to write?

I love chatting and relating stories, writing them is just a step further. I spent a lonely childhood – eldest of a large family with siblings a lot younger than I – reading and writing kept me sane. I find writing helps turn the pressure cooker off inside my head when something is giving me grief. Also, living the life we’ve led there are so many stories to tell, so many characters we’ve met who did the most outrageous things – all fodder for a writer. How could I not write about some of it! Hollywood is stranger than fiction for starters.

 
Do you aim for a set amount of words/pages per day?

No I cannot do that. I can write to a deadline and word count if told to but I don’t break it up into hours or days. I just write until I get tired, or other things call for my attention.

 
Do you use your personal experiences in your writing?

Well, I guess so, who doesn’t? Indirectly, subconsciously, we all must. There are some events which I’ve experienced which would be criminal not to include in my stories, however, I am always conscious of not stepping too far out of line and waking up with a horse’s head in the bed or concrete boots on! One has to be very careful.

 
How important are names to you in your books? Do you choose the names based on liking the way it sounds or the meaning?

Names are important to me but funnily enough names just pop into my head and they are usually very pertinent to the character I am writing. Sometimes it is a name which gives me inspiration for the book.

 
Your stories have appeared in a few anthologies, did this experience help move you to writing your novel?

I’ve had several novels on the go simultaneously as well as writing short stories and flash fiction at the same time, so it has not helped or hindered me really. Short stories and flash fiction are great for concentrating the mind, making every word and sentence count. I tend not to go in for long sentences or chapters when I can help it. Keeping the pace up.

 
Could you give us a brief synopsis of one (your favourite) of the stories?

51ennCOdBPLWow this is difficult. I love all my stories – I can’t help it. As it is Christmas (as I write this it is, anyway**) I will tell you a little about ‘Merry Christmas Everybody,’ published by Accent Press in the anthology ‘Wishing on a Star.’ The title is from The Slade hit.

It is based on true events one Christmas when we were recording in a studio in the North of the UK, owned by a super-star guitarist. We were working with a now deceased producer and I have exaggerated events a lot, and of course indulged in poetic license.

Twister is in the studio recording their follow-up album to their last massive hit and tensions are rising as the band work day and night to keep to their recording schedule and budget. Time is money. Their new producer obviously doesn’t like them and there’s no love lost on Twister’s side either. Daily they meet to review the previous night’s work but something’s wrong with the previous two night’s recordings – there’s keyboards all over the track and no-one in the rock band has played keyboards on the tracks and won’t be either. They are not bloody Night Ranger for goodness sakes. The producer is furious and accuses the band of sabotage and the band accuse him, but it soon becomes clear that other forces are at work…soon the atmosphere erupts and violence ensues…

**My apologies for the delay in getting this interview posted

 
What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

I am an avid reader, I love photography and can be found with my camera photographing the countryside, wild-life and ancient churches, cathedrals and villages – some of which are later locations for my stories. I do family history research, I love astronomy and science and I am a history buff. Actually I’m curious about everything so keep my mind active with all manner of activities. I have undertaken 7 university courses since 2015, mostly studying Forensic Science and Criminal Justice so that I can have a basic understanding and knowledge for my crime writing.

 
As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up?

I first wanted to be Doris Day and then I decided I’d love to dance with Fred Astaire so you can see a theatrical streak appearing. As a teen I wanted to be a writer and had hoped to work as an apprentice journalist on the Sunday Times with a dream of being a War Correspondent – the school careers officer soon put paid to that idea. I ended up working for the government for years until the theatrical side was satisfied when I managed bands etc.

 
Do you read much and if so who are your favourite authors?

Oh cripes I read and read…I love reading. I love so many authors, but here are a few: Kathy Reichs, Tess Gerritsen, Karin Slaughter, Michael Connolly, Peter James, Steall Rimington, Frederick Forsythe, John le Carre, Roger A Price, and so many more. Anyone writing crime and espionage basically.

 
You’re stranded on a desert island and you can take three people who would they be and why?

My husband, my son, and Professor Brian Cox because we can all talk about music and science and argue about UFO’s and so on.

 
Is there anything else you’d like to share with us?

That is a huge ask. I would love your readers to seek out my writing – I have a wide and diverse range of work from crime to ghost stories (not too scary) to basic fiction, and therefore I hope to have something for everyone. Only On Woman has been an epic undertaking second only to my Ms Birdsong Investigates series – in with my publisher still. Like all writers we need readers who review and are happy to share their thoughts on Amazon and GoodReads. For some reason it makes the publishers happy and any agents looking at an author. I have stories in two anthologies last December: Ghostly Writes Anthology 2017, and Stab in the Dark: Christmas Capers 2017 – both best-sellers on Amazon.Jane Risdon Christmas

Oh! And if you want a giggle….Only One Woman was put in the wrong category on amazon and we had a little wait for them to put it elsewhere (still not right but better). They put it in BDSM and Erotica – it went to #33 in their chart. Hilarious but actually, not very helpful for us. It is Women’s Fiction and Saga but we are not holding our breath.

 
And finally, a few quick-fire questions if you don’t mind…

When was the last time you walked for more than an hour?

I walked in the lake district for a whole day.

 
If you could wake up tomorrow having gained one quality or ability, what would it be?

I’d love to Time Travel.

 
Are you an early riser or a night owl?

I am an owl and a lark. Working in the music business you learn to operate on little sleep and cannot afford to stay in bed and we mostly work at night anyway.

 
When did you last sing to yourself? To someone else?

I sing often and sometimes my husband and I sing duets and harmonise. It has to be done and we cannot help ourselves. It is in our blood.

 
Thank you for spending this time with us, Jane. If you wouldn’t mind leaving us some links before you get back to your busy schedule!

Thanks so much Raine. I loved doing this.

Here are my links. Not all my books are on amazon but my blog should provide links.

Blog • Facebook • Twitter • Amazon • Goodreads

Only One Woman

Amazon • Facebook

View across the fields (c) Jane Risdon 2011

View across the fields (c) Jane Risdon 2011

Atlantis by Carol Roberts

Atlantis.jpg

 

51fIso3t-7LWhen Alanthea, high-priestess of Atlantis, connects to a woman in her dreams, she becomes haunted by a mystery. Compelled to trace the other woman’s life she finds coded poems that hold clues to the predicament of her people. Now she has to venture ever farther into forbidden territory to link past and present, and understand the real danger threatening Atlantis.

Arakon always thought of himself as an orphan, a loner without any real belonging. But after a strange encounter his life changes, and he is drawn into events beyond his control.

They move parallel in their search for answers until their destinies converge, and the weave unravels. Yet what they finally uncover lies deep at the heart of collective evolution, and what has been set in motion cannot be undone.

Amazon

Excerpt:

Time shifted as Arakon carefully turned and dug his heels into the horse’s side. A good horse, a strong horse, just like the old man’s had been. The shade of the trees embraced him, and the sound of the water came closer. Would he still find the track? Was there a track? Time shifted further, and he felt an eerie sensation between his shoulder blades. The forest was too quiet, the water overly loud. Gideon started to slip, and he reined the stallion in even further.

The filtered light threw strange patterns onto the ground, and when the moment came, he let go of the reins and let Gideon run. Leaves slapped him in the face, and as the noise became deafening, he could see the glistening spray which lay like a shimmering web ahead of him. Gideon shied but could not stop. They raced on until the tree-line opened up, and he could see the gorge falling away in front of him like a black, open mouth.

 

 
Author Bio:

A10OB2P-XLL._UX250_Carol Roberts is a freelance writer with particular interest in cultural myth. Originally from Vienna, she has spent all of her adult life in the Far North of New Zealand. Her work took her to several different countries, where she indulged her fascination with stories, particularly those dealing with the creation of man.

‘Atlantis’ is her first full-length novel; speculating on concepts of the human condition, the meaning of individual and collective destiny, and the choices within that. Her second novel ‘Tower of Babel’ is also complete.

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Valentine Countdown Blitz – Day 12

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See Me for Me by Teya Peck

 

 

coverOne wrong step changes Jocelyn’s Prima Ballerina’s life in one step…

A single choice results in Jeremiah facing unbearable consequences…

When these two meet, it could be catastrophic or the answer to unspoken prayers.

Can love be tested too far? Will hearts soften and hurts be forgiven?

Or will too much loss be too devastating to find hope?

One thing is for sure, lives are about to change forever…

Amazon ~  Goodreads ~

Snippet:

Coming to a stop sign, Jeremiah glanced quickly left, then right, and stepped on the gas as he glanced at his sister. Strangely, she began to glow brighter. A fleeting thought came to him of why she might be illuminated. Emily started to turn her head right, and as she turned everything slowed down. Silence fill the space, not even the radio made a sound. He saw her eyes wide with fear and her mouth open as if in screaming, but no words. He felt his eyebrows crease together a second before he heard Emily scream, “Jer!” Then a deafening crunch, as he slammed against his door, and as his head careened toward the window. Metal twisting metal, and the shattering of glass could be heard. Just before his head smashed against the window knocking him out.

 

 

AuthorHer most recent accomplishment started in the summer of 2015. Making her dad’s dream come true with publishing his works as well, as an emotional accomplishment. She is the 2016 local A.N.W.A. chapter (Snake River Writers) president, won NaNoWriMo and loves StoryMakers.

Teya has been writing for as long as she can remember. At a young age she lived on a street she affectionately named Hill Street Blues, which helped her creative writing. Her Family moved to Menan where she continued her love of writing. Her father would always be and will continue to be her inspiration, even after his untimely death in 2006.

She loves sitting in her soft chair next to the fireplace and watching out a big living room window. It gives her plenty of creative juice for stories.

She met the love of her life in the loft of a barn. Yep, that set up some teasing from her father. They have been happily married since 2003. They have four children and all are loving and supportive of her writing.  Her oldest daughter is following in her footsteps as a writer adding her own illustrations. She refuses to comment on the trolls in the closets and under the beds. She is active in her church, has compassion for others, and a love for all life brings.

Website ~ Facebook ~ Amazon ~ Goodreads ~

 

 

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Enthralled by Raechel Lynn

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Author, Raechel Lynn brings you Enthralled, a continuation of Magnus and Eleanor’s story. Set two months down the road, Magnus has finally reached his breaking point and decides to seek out Eleanor. But at what price?

 
In love fashion couple kiss against a grey wall.

The life Magnus knew is in shambles. There is only one woman on his mind, and he will do whatever he can to have her. He is a wanted man, the bounty on his head growing every day, but he is more of a threat each day that he is away from her. The Faction is closing its noose around Magnus’ neck, and the monster inside him demands her in his bed. Will he be able to keep her safe?

Eleanor is walking a razor’s edge. Her family is dangerous, and so is the man she craves. She’s searching for her true happiness, and learning to stand on her own; but will falling for Magnus be the most dangerous choice she’s made yet?

Amazon 

Excerpt:

Warning! Minor spoiler alert if you haven’t read Enticed yet!

      “Hey beautiful, do you come here often?” The urge to pull her into his arms was savage.
      “Magnus, I’ve been here every weekend looking for you. Why did you leave?” Eleanor shoved her thumbs in her belt, fighting the primal urge to touch him.
      Magnus felt his jaw drop. “How do you remember?”
      She searched his face, registered the shock and confusion, as well as the desire. “Look, I know what you are Magnus. How I know this is a long story that, in time, I’ll tell you. But for right now, all you need to know is that you can’t compel me. Why did you leave me that night?”
      He reached a shaking hand out to brush a stray lock of hair behind her ear. “I was trying to protect you. I have enemies in this city, and if they find out there is someone important to me, they will use them to hurt me. You’re too good of a woman to be snuffed out because you’re hanging around a low-life like me.”
      Warmth flooded Eleanor. “All I need to protect me is you. I know the risks Magnus. I want what you offered me. Even if it is just for a few more nights.”
      “I don’t want you hurt Eleanor.” Hope sliced through him, sharp and dangerous.
      “Magnus, I’m a big girl. I can make my own decisions. I’m asking you to take me, as I am, for however long you want me.” Eleanor reached out her hand, willing him to her.
      “You still don’t know what you’re asking of me. My world is much darker, and much deeper, than the small piece that you saw. I’ll ask many things of you, things that will be beyond your current comfort level, I’ll ask you to share yourself, as well as myself, with others. Our safe words will always apply, but you’ll be my slave.” Magnus wanted her to say yes, he wanted her to come fully into his world, but she had to make the decision for herself.

 
Message to Readers:

I hope that you enjoy Enthralled as much as I do. It was a blast to write, and I look forward to bringing more of Eleanor and Magnus’ story.
~Raechel

51l3ASl-kSL

Also Available:

Enticed

Eleanor and Magnus
Book 1

Amazon

 
 

Author Bio:

frisco1oRaechel Lynn is an almost 30-year-old erotica author living in the pacific northwest. Her biggest passion outside of writing is competing with her two American Quarter Horses, Cinder and Frisco. She is an adoption advocate, and her 70-lb Pitbull Remington is a lap dog. Her full-time job is lifeguard, swim instructor, and swim team coach.

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Raechel Lynn has agreed to be interviewed and will be visiting Rainne’s Ramblings next week.

Meanwhile, to whet your appetite, here are Raechel’s Favorite Authors

  1. Ken Follett
  2. Gena Showalter
  3. Sherrilyn Kenyon
  4. Kresley Cole
  5. Karen Marie Moning
  6. Anne McCaffery
  7. J.K. Rowling
  8. Piers Anthony
  9. China Mieville
  10. Stephen King

 

 

An Interview with Raechel Lynn