Sunday, 1 November 2015

Ash vs Evil Dead - Mental, Cliched and Wonderful...

30 years ago, a group of teenagers opened a book, read a few words, as you do, and unleashed lots of really not very nice evil thingies onto the unsuspecting cinema going public.  Filled with glorious tongue in cheek humour, buckets of spurting blood and a handy chainsaw, the Evil Dead series was brilliant.

From the mind of Sam Raimi, who brought us Spiderman, Xena, Drag Me to Hell, Darkman and Oz the Great and Powerful and starring Bruce Campbell, The Evil Dead was deliberately low budget and deliberately over the top.  It blew me away.  It was so easy to get washed away by the tsunami of blood and to lose yourself in the dark humour and snappy one liners.

I loved it.

When I saw the trailer for Ash vs Evil Dead, I really couldn’t wait.  It looked completely mental and took me right back to the glory days of the original film.  At first, I thought it was a new film, not realising it was a series.  It may well have been made obvious in the trailer, but I was probably jumping up and down, clapping my hands at the time so missed it.

It wasn’t until last night, actually watching the show, that I figured my mistake.  A series?  Even better!  So much more evil-slaying to throw at us.

So.  Did it live up to the hype (not necessarily the media hype, but more my own anticipation)?

Hell yes!

From the outset, when Ash pulls on his corset and drops by the bar for a drink and a little more, the show grabs hold of you and drags you along on the ride of your life.  With his friend at the store (reminiscent of Reaper – no bad thing) pushing him to fight the evil, Ash battles grannies as a police officer fights creatures that give Linda Blair a run for her head spinning money.

The only problem with a TV series is you have to wait for a whole week until the next episode and I’m impatient for more.  Ash vs Evil Dead is groovy enough to make sure the wait is worthwhile.

I tweeted, after watching, saying it was ‘over the top, mad, non stop and fairly clichéd’.  I was a little star struck when the official, actual team tweeted me back saying they took offence at being called ‘fairly clichéd’.  They told me they’re completely clichéd’!

Almost every horror film, nowadays, is a cliché.  The stories have been done so many times before, in one form or another, it’s difficult to find something original.

Ash vs Evil Dead really doesn’t care.  It embraces this with aplomb, a word I really don’t think I’ve ever used before.

If you like your horror with an ocean of blood, over the top craziness and laugh out loud humour, make sure you meet up with Ash – you won’t regret it.

Just don’t shake his hand.

Monday, 12 October 2015

The Lunatic and the Queen...

Good evening, Sin here.  Well, it’s evening where I am?  It quite possibly isn’t where you are.  Time is playing yo-yo with all our lives and tossing time zones about for us to scramble at like children to the outpoured guts of a piñata.  Anywho.  I had a wee visit earlier from one Freia Titland.  She’s an actress, teacher and much more.  She hung around enough for me to have a wee chat with her.  Say hi!
What’s your name?
Freia Titland… Queen of the Norse Goddesses.
A queen?  I wasn’t aware.  It’s not often we get royalty in here.  Actually, we don’t.  There’s one or two who prance around like kings under the guide of orderlies, but we won’t count them.  Where are you from?
I’m from New York… the city that never sleeps. Kinda like me.
And did they name you twice?  I’ve always wanted to visit New York.  Unfortunately, they don’t do day release and, even if they did it and I could get there and back in time, with a little sightseeing, I’d be too worried about what might happen.  I’ve only ever flipped a two pence coin.  I don’t know what might happen if I get my hands on some of that funny money you lot use.  Do you like living there?  If not, where would your favourite place to live be?  Is yes, where would you least like to live?
Yeah… I like a good crazy on the subway time and again. But, if I could live anywhere else it would definitely be Oslo, Norway.
You have Scandinavian yearnings?  That sounds cool.  I would love to visit such places, if only to see the Northern Lights.  One day, before I die, I’m going to see the sky on fire.  As you’re a film-maker, is this your ‘day job’?
Well… I’m a ‘film-maker’ but on the other side of the camera. I’m an Actress. Originally a theatre actress but I dabble in film and TV as well. My ‘day job’ is Acting Teacher and Concept artist. I own an entertainment production company called Wiseland Entertainment.
My story has been with a US based production company, but they didn’t quite get it.  You certainly seem to have a busy life!  Tell me about your latest project.
Me personally, I just finished filming an episode of Orange is the New Black. Wiseland, however, is working on a creative arts series called ‘Shakespeare’s Magical World’ where we explore the magical and ‘unnatural’ elements found throughout Willy’s body of work.
Orange is the New Black?  I didn’t expect to like that show, but I do.  It’s funny and well scripted and you do come to like and feel for the myriad characters.  One of my favourites is Crazy Eyes, for some reason…  The ‘Magical World’ series sounds interesting too.  Magical creatures abound in some of his work.  But, how do you feel about bacon?  A crazy person once said it was the food of the gods.  OK, I admit that person was myself...
Ha! I love bacon… but I’m trying not to eat animals anymore because it makes me sad. I guess that makes me the crazy person now?
Absolutely.  Bacon is like… yum!  So, giving you the chance to redeem yourself, what is your favourite film?
Persona by Ingmar Bergman. That should tell you a bit about my personality…
Very interesting choice!  It’s a classic film, though somewhat surreal.  Much like a Sunday afternoon in here.  People who do nothing but speak, chatting to those who will potentially never utter a word.  Have you always wanted to be an actress, or is it something you found yourself doing one day?
I don’t know if I ever wanted to be anything else. My mom was an Actress so ever since I was in the womb, theatre and art have been a part of my life. It wasn’t until I had to start thinking about college did I find myself going “oh, I guess this is what I’m going to do with my life.”
You had a good introduction then, with your mother being part of that world.  I wonder if you think it was inevitable.  You seem to be very happy with it, though.  Do you have so many ideas they dribble out of your nose if you don’t get them down, or do you have to hunt around the floor and the back of your sofa to find where your Muse is hiding?
Oh, I’ve got things so dark bursting from my insides that even you might run from them. The ideas are always coming, always burning, always growing… it’s the execution that drives me nuts. Expressing your vision to someone else and trying to get them on board with you is the hard part.
Erm…  Well…  The dark things which grow in me result in people dying on the toss of a coin.  You can keep your bubbling cauldron of imagination to yourself, thanks very much!  If you were in an asylum, what would your particular delusion or psychosis be?
I’d have some strange bad mother complex. I’d be very child-like, collapsing in on myself and seeking love. And, when there is no one to give it to me I would explore in murderous screams, thrashing my body about violently until I’ve tired myself out.
That’d keep the staff entertained.  They like it when the residents kick off.  It gives them something to do with their needles.  What genre(s) do you perform?
I’m really into theatre of the absurd and avant-garde stuff. I also enjoy a good political or social piece of theatre.
Sounds good.  The theatre of the absurd is what keeps us alive in here.  It’s never normal, so absurdities are our conventional.  What genres(s) do you read?
Fantasy… adventure. I’m really into Harry Potter and Tolkien.
Ah, great stories.  I’ve read lots of fantasy, loving Eddings and Brooks.  Tolkien was a master and Rowling created a host of characters and a world which millions wished they could be a part of.  That’s talent.  If these are the same, what attracts you to them.  If they’re different, why do you think that is?
I think they have overlapping elements. I mean, the whole Harry Potter series is a poetic essay on Nazi-ism, racism, classism, etc. but placed in a magical setting. I think the difference is that one is more raw and in your face and the other allows you to take a step back and be more of a bystander.
I suppose you could think of Potter in that way.  I tend not to see or look for underlying themes, like the religious undertones of The Golden Compass etc.  I just enjoy the story at face value.  But, bacon – just cooked or crispy?
Crispy. Oh god the piglets!! No!!
Oh, of course!  Piglets are cute!  Especially between a couple of rounds of bread…  Now you’re in the asylum with me, how do you aim to get out?  Do you have an escape plan?
Mommy will take care of everything sweetheart.
Mommy is off to change her vowel for a ‘u’ so she fits in over here.  She’ll be gone a while.  Best make yourself comfortable.
Freia M. Titland is a NYC based Actress and Model. Currently pursuing a M.A. in Theatre, Freia received her BFA in Acting and Religious Studies from Pace U. Freia is currently shooting a documentary that will be released later this year. To learn more, please visit 
Twitter: @TitlandF

Monday, 5 October 2015

Deltaville - The 34 Seconds Tour by Stella Samuel #IndieMinons

Welcome to the tour hub for the 34 Seconds Tour, a debut novel by Stella Samuel. Setting is everything when I've written my stories in the past, so Stella is here to talk about Deltaville...

Much of my new book is set in a little town called Deltaville, Virginia. If you've never been to Deltaville, put it on your bucket list. It's a must see.

With only one road in and out of Deltaville, few just happen upon the little town unless that are under duress in the water.

Legend tells a story of Captain John Smith coming across Deltaville's point in 1608. While exploring its beaches and coastal waters, John Smith was stung by a stingray. He told his crew to dig a grave as he thought he'd die right there on that point. He didn't, of course, but he did leave a name for the point, Stingray Point.

Residents of Deltaville still say the little 'town' is a fishing village. People travel from miles around for the seafood caught in the area waters. Folks living there will say they are lucky to be in the most beautiful village around.

Though my book takes place in Deltaville, and I've taken many liberties with the village by creating roads and places that are indeed fictional, many from Deltaville will know where my mind was while writing.

Nikki is a small town girl who felt she had to get away and live a full life in a city with sidewalks and coffee shops. I chose to use Deltaville, Virginia as Nikki’s small town backdrop because it’s a place where I spent my childhood. My father lived there for more than thirty years. He’s buried in Deltaville. When my father passed away in 2012, I knew I’d never have a reason to go back. Sure, I have family nearby, but I could visit family and never get real close to the actual village of Deltaville. I may never go back. Using Deltaville in 34 Seconds gave me an opportunity to honor a place I love as well as gain closure I needed on a place I may never see again.

Stella Samuel

Stella Samuel is a debut author who reads multiple genres.  Her first book, 34 Seconds, talks about the moments where life changes suddenly, and the choices we make in those moments where the people that hold parts of ourselves from the past meet.  A literate and lyrical view at love, life and fate, this story is both uplifting and satisfying. Stella is a debut author who loves nothing more than connecting with fans on social media.  Her blog bio is: Stella Samuel – Writer, Butterfly and Singer of Silly Songs. Smiles under sunshine but dances in warm rain. Silently wishes to winter in Phoenix.


Nikki and Will fell in love a lifetime ago in Deltaville, Virginia. Now living in Colorado with her family, Nikki is invited to attend Will’s wedding back in Virginia where she finds her past staring her in the face. Will never wanted a wife, and he broke Nikki's heart long ago. Nikki knew what she wanted: a strong, happy marriage and children, a future. She found those things when she married Chris, and she and Will managed to grow their friendship after heartbreak. A year after the wedding, Nikki is faced with her painful past again. She soon discovers she must find the strength to help Will on his own personal journey. In thirty-four seconds, she sees him slip from her life forever. Watching Will cross over to his fate, her past collides with her present, and Nikki learns she’s never been in control of her own destiny. Her own journey back to her family in Colorado becomes one of self-discovery. With the help of Will’s voice to carry her across the country, Nikki must decide how she will move forward.

Buy 34 seconds here
You can follow Stella on various social media platforms and her blog.
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Tuesday, 29 September 2015

The Lost Name and the Blue Grass...

Hi, Sin here.  Today I’m joined by Belinda, someone my author, Shaun, met something like four years ago.  She thinks I’m cheeky.  I can’t think why.

Hi Belinda.  What’s your name?  Now, I realise I just said your name but, well… erm… introduce yourself…
My name is Belinda G. Buchanan — and before you ask, I won’t tell you what the middle initial stands for.
I reckon it’s Glinda, as in the good witch from Wizard of Oz.  Or perhaps Gregory.  Garry?  Gina?  Nah, I’ll go with Glinda.  Anywho.  Where are you from?
Kentucky, also known as the bluegrass state.
You have blue grass?  Is that where James Cameron got the idea for Avatar?  Do you like living there?  If not, where would your favourite place to live be?  If yes, where would you least like to live?
Well, I….you know, Sin, your questions are a tad confusing. I’ve lived in a few different states since I’ve been married, but I have to say that the city I’m living in now is the best. It’s a small town where everyone waves at you…it’s a nice place to raise my sons.  The place I’d least like to live would have to be the Waverly Hills Sanitarium (which has been called the most haunted place on earth) and is less than an hour from my house.
You think I’m confusing?  You have a middle initial without a name… although I’m the man who lost my own last name along the way.  Oh, and you live somewhere where they have blue grass.  Doesn’t it get confusing if you go to the seaside?  Do you think you can walk on the ocean or is it swim in the sea?  See, now I’m confused.  As you’re a writer, is this your ‘day job’?
Writing is my day job, night job, and all jobs in between - that, along with being a mom to two boys.
Sounds good.  I’m sure Shaun wishes he could write all the time.  It would mean it’d be less cramped in his head for me.  Tell me about your latest project.
‘Tragedy at Silver Creek’ has just been released and is a novel about a small town in Montana that is trying to cope with the aftermath of a serial killer’s reign of terror.
Let’s hope they don’t have blue grass to contend with too.  Seriously, though, it sounds great.  I have to ask, though, how do you feel about bacon?  A crazy person once said it was the food of the gods.  OK, I admit that person was myself...
I adore bacon and….wait…I think you’ve got some bacon juice on your chin.
Don’t you hate it when that happens?  It’s all that time in a strait jacket.  You sometimes forget you can actually wipe your chin!  So.  What is your favourite film?
It changes from year to year as new ones come out. My current favorite is The Age of Adaline with Blake Lively and Harrison Ford. Have you seen it? If not, you should.  I mean, they have movie night here, don’t they?
I haven’t seen it yet, though I’ve heard good things about it.  Yes, we occasionally have a movie night and, occasionally, it’s a decent film rather than the one we saw three weeks earlier and everyone fell asleep at!  Have you always wanted to be a writer, or is it something you found yourself doing one day?
I began writing when I was ten or eleven I think. Stories would just pop into my head and I’d put them down on paper, hiding them under my mattress where only I could read them.  That intensity carried over, and when I was in my twenties, I wrote, After All Is Said and Done. I love to write stories, and can’t imagine not doing it.
It must be fulfilling to be able to bring your creations into life and not need to hide them.  Do you have so many ideas they dribble out of your nose if you don’t get them down, or do you have to hunt around the floor and the back of your sofa to find where your Muse is hiding?
The words flow through my fingertips like a running faucet, but the day after is comparable to a bad hangover. I look at the screen on my computer and wonder what the heck was I thinking? Type, delete, rewrite…repeat. My muse is usually right beside me, but sometimes she disappears (maybe out of boredom, I don’t know).  I wait patiently for her to return, but if she doesn’t come back by nightfall, I leave an unwrapped KitKat on the stairs. It usually takes her about five minutes to smell the chocolate and come around.
Ah, bribery!  I like your style.  And a Kitkat, good choice – I’m partial to a finger or two myself.  If you were in an asylum, what would your particular delusion or psychosis be?
I suffer from an acute syndrome of talking about the characters in my novels as if they are real. I have a tendency to babble on and on about them like they are an extended part of my dysfunctional family - a habit that drives my husband nutters.
I can always find room for him here.  I’m sure Connors wouldn’t mind.  And, as for treating your characters as real, that’s a bit strange isn’t it (says a fictional character talking to you)?  I think you’d both fit in very well!  What genre(s) do you write?
I write edgy, women’s fiction and mystery romance/suspense. They’re filled with emotion, intimacy, humor, and angst. If you don’t mind a few racy scenes and a sprinkling of profanity here and there, then my novels are for you.
Sounds interesting.  Joy, my sister, liked those sorts of books.  She read almost continually.  And, what genres(s) do you read?
I mostly read women’s fiction, & mystery, but if I see a cover that’s striking and like the blurb, I’ll read it-even if it’s not in that genre. I am a huge Star Trek Fan and have boxes and boxes of their paperbacks that I scored at a yard sale a few years ago.
Star Trek!  Cool!  I love Star Trek myself.  I think Shaun quite likes it too, though he’s never said.  If these are the same, what attracts you to them?  If they’re different, why do you think that is? 
I like women’s fiction because I like a story with drama. I give certain afflictions to my characters (alcoholism, mental illness) and sprinkle in a few flaws (like adultery). My women are not weak, and my men are not always strong. Giving them these problems makes them human and brings about a certain vulnerability, because even a hero has a chink or two in his armor.
Very true and a good premise.  A flaw can be the floor to help you stand up straight and true.  Or something.  Bacon – just cooked or crispy?
I like my bacon so crispy that it snaps in half when you bite into it.

Wow, that’s crispy!  I like mine crispy too, but not so much that I’d break a tooth!  Now you’re in the asylum with me, how do you aim to get out?  Do you have an escape plan? 
I do have an escape plan, but I’m going to need your help. Do you have a coin? Flip and catch…
The problem with tossing a coin is you never know which way it will land, or who will die in the process…
So, there’s Belinda.  A lovely woman, I can assure you, though with her blue grass and not knowing her middle name, she may need a night or ten in the asylum…

You can find out more about Belinda at the following locations.  I can recommend dropping by and checking out her books!
Buy links:  Amazon   Barnes & Noble    itunes     kobo     

Friday, 28 August 2015

Something Sinister this way comes...

Every so often, something big comes your way.  It's not necessarily a major deal to anyone else, but to you - it's a mindblower.  It can involve large amounts of money, children, marriage, a job offer you can't refuse...  There are lots of things.

Writing, for me, is something I've done all my life.  From being a child, I've scribbled down stories.  Yes, there have been times I've not written much, due to various issues and a distinct lack of time, but now it's an essential part of my life.  I even have tattoos depicting my love of the craft.

Well.  Last year, I was approached by the wonderful Wattpad to ask if I'd be willing to write an original story based on the premise of the movie The Purge.  The sequel, The Purge: Anarchy, was coming out and Universal was working with Wattpad, which gets in excess of 14 million unique visitors a month, to help promote the film.  My book, Sin, is apparently one of their top mystery/thrillers and they thought I'd be ideal to write for the film.  I wrote Mr. Composure, a story which was described as 'the best story ever' and had 'the best plot twist ever'.  To say I was honoured to have been asked is an understatement.

This was one of those big things.

Imagine my shock-surprise-elation when I received a similar request this year!

Universal were releasing Sinister 2, the follow up to the hit horror, Sinister.  They were working with Wattpad once again.  This time, however, they specifically asked for me as they were so pleased with my work on Mr. Composure!

Erm...  WOW!!

I'd seen, and enjoyed, the first film.  I liked the premise too.  I just had to come up with an idea.  With The Purge's Mr. Composure, my wife had given me the inspiration for the opening (often that's all I need to run with a story).  I could then write and see where it went.  For Sinister 2, the studio wanted an overview of the story first.  GULP!  I usually don't work like that - the story takes its own path and I run along behind, picking up the words and trying to throw them together in some semblance of order.  It meant I had to have a full idea of the story before I'd even written it.  Now, I know lots of authors work like that.  They plan each chapter with a full idea of the story arc and then flesh it out.  As I don't, this was a new experience for me.

But, I did it.  My little girl, who’s 4, told me I could keep her imaginary friend, Nathaniel (a name we’ve never used as we don’t know anyone with that name) forever...  Erm...  Yes...  Needless to say, Nathaniel seemed to fit perfectly for what I needed here.  I wrote the story.  Suffer the Little Children is that story and, apparently, it's 'genuinely terrifying', which is nice!

So, that's two big things.  Two reasons for me to put my hand to my mouth and go "WOW!"  Not just being asked to write the stories in the first place, but because of the amazing response and support I've had for them too.

So, thank you Wattpad, thank you Universal and a 'big' thank you to you guys.  It is appreciated!

Now, of course, I am working on my next story.  My eldest daughter (12 years old) gave me a bizarre and somewhat twisted idea of The Little Mermaid as a sort of challenge.  I’m almost 10,000 words in and I’m happy to say, I’m rising to that challenge.  And the Meek Shall Walk is coming along nicely, though the Little Mermaid, to my knowledge, didn’t have blood or decapitation in it...

For further reading, here’s the links to the stories above:

Suffer the Little Children:


Mr. Composure:

And the Meek Shall Walk:

Monday, 22 June 2015

Mountains of the Moon: An epic epic!

As an author, I'm constantly delving into the lives and minds of the people I create.  I walk in their footsteps and their hearts beat in time with my own - though, in many cases, not for long.

My own work is based *usually) in my home town of Grimsby and the surrounding area.  I'm writing 'what I know', which is often said to be the best thing to do.  That's not why I do it, however - I write about my home town because it's 'ordinary' and I want it to appear 'extraordinary'.  Plus, I know it very well.

I have to admire, therefore, those authors who create brand new realms.  They fashion such vast vistas with intimately crafted heroes and villains, I often wonder how they keep track of such detail.  One such person, a magician in a magical world of her own creation, is Connie J. Jasperson.

Connie is gifted in such magic.  With the flourish with which most illusionists can only conjure white doves, she brings to life stunning landscapes and almost living inhabitants.

Connie's latest offering, Mountains of the Moon, is the beginning of a new series, set in her land of Neveyah, where we first found ourselves in her wonderful Tower of Bones.

Charged by the goddess Aeos, Wynn and his companions bicker and bumble their way through the Mountains of the Moon. Danger, mystery, and dark prophecies chase them through a gauntlet of jagged peaks and deadly traps.

Can they survive the dark secret hidden in Tauron’s crumbling castle before his minotaurs overrun Neveyah?

The Gods are at war, and Neveyah is the battlefield.

Here's a little about Connie and her work.

Connie J. Jasperson lives in Olympia, Washington.  A vegan, she and her husband share five children, a love of good food and great music. She is active in local writing groups, an editor for Myrddin Publishing Group, and is a writing coach. She is an active member of the both the Northwest Independent Writers Association and Pacific Northwest Writers Association, and is a founding member of Myrddin Publishing Group.  Music and food dominate her waking moments. When not writing or blogging she can be found with her Kindle, reading avidly. You can find her blogging on her writing life at:

Connie J. Jasperson’s  body of work includes:

WORLD OF NEVEYAH series by Connie J. Jasperson

Mountains of the Moon - Danger, mystery, and dark prophecies, lie deep in a gauntlet of jagged peaks and deadly traps. Can Wynn survive the dark secret hidden in Tauron’s stolen castle before the Bull God’s minotaurs overrun Neveyah?

TOWER OF BONES, series based in the World of Neveyah

The gods are at war, and Neveyah is the battlefield.

This epic fantasy series opens with Tower of Bones, and follows Edwin Farmer as he journeys deep into the lands claimed by the dreaded Bull God, in an attempt to rescue a girl he has only met in his dreams.

Forbidden Road takes up Edwin’s story six years later. When four mages are sent into the shadowed lands claimed by the mad priest of the Bull God, who will return unscathed? Sorrow, peril, and magic await in the Valley of Mal Evol.


Huw, the Bard, a novel that takes you to the world of Waldeyn, and a medieval alternate reality. Fleeing a burning city, everything he ever loved in ashes behind him, penniless and hunted, Huw the Bard must somehow survive. Available as an ebook and in paper.

Tales From the Dreamtime – a novella consisting of three modern fairy tales told in a traditional style. Available as an ebook, in paper, and as an Audiobook, narrated by the wonderful voice actor, Craig Allen.

She has kindly given us an excerpt from her latest novel:
The two prisoners heard heavy footsteps approaching, sounds that seemed to echo down a long passageway and stopped outside the door. A tired sounding voice said, “Well, your lordship. Did you feed them and give them water?”
“Of course I did,” replied the baron, in a quavering tenor. “I live, Jenner, but only because I serve. I understand that well.”
“They’re awake then. Those two soldiers of Tauron roughed them up pretty bad. Should I call Grakken to heal them now?”
The old man’s tones were sardonic. “Yes, you should. Your tame minotaurs were far gentler on them than they’ve been on some of the others, which isn’t saying much. At least these two big fellows have enough slack in their chains to be able to feed themselves and piss in a bucket.” His tones were scathing.
 “They’d better not have hurt them too badly. These two must be in good health for the ceremony tonight,” muttered the earth-mage. “Grakken is expecting a visit from High Priest Kandek today. The high priest will be pleased to have a real sacrifice to offer up on his new altar tonight instead of the usual miserable rabble.”
“I’m sure ‘the miserable rabble’ would have been glad to hear that if they’d survived your boss’s little frenzy the other day,” replied the old man. “Speaking of which, if we’re done here, I have to go and check on the one that does remain. I’m sure despite the ruckus of the other day, Grakken still has plans for her and wants to keep her alive even though he has these two fine specimens for tonight’s festivities, so….”
“Well, go about your duties then. I’m going to sit here just to keep those freaks from Serende from getting any ideas about using these two for sport. As soon as he’s awake, I’ll let Grakken know they’re here, through our link. He’ll be worried about their safety.”
“He should be worried about those soldiers, Jenner. They’re bored, and there’s nothing worse than a bored minotaur. Just so you’re aware, the woman likely won’t live through the day after their gentle courtship of her. You only have your minotaurs to blame for that. But it’s not my job to worry about the health of his sacrifices, especially since Grakken himself seems to be so careless with them.”

Here's where you can find Connie on the interest:
Twitter: @cjjasp
Life in the Realm of Fantasy (Connie J Jasperson’s Author Blog)
The Best in Fantasy Book Reviews –

Friday, 20 February 2015

Revealing the Heart Betrayed

Recently I had the immense pleasure of helping reveal Carlie Cullen’s Heart Search: Betrayal cover.  Today, she’s allowed me to show an excerpt of the book and, reading this, I’m even more eager to read it!

Heart Search: Betrayal

Six days before the trial, I received another call from the Chief Constable and my heart sank. Each call was another reminder I just didn’t need. After the usual pleasantries had been exchanged, he became abruptly ill at ease.

“Is there something wrong?” I asked.

“Er, well it depends on your point of view I suppose. Are you sitting down?”

“Yes. What is it?”
“I received a call about an hour ago from the Governor at Holloway Prison where Bernice Dalton was in custody. Apparently she wrote a note of confession and then committed suicide. She’s dead, Remy,” he said gently.

A rush of relief blew through me like a stiff breeze through a lace curtain. I was off the hook. I wouldn’t have to go to court! I had to reign in my jubilation to answer him. “Er, I’m not really sure what to say.”

“I can understand that. I haven’t yet seen the note she left, but from what little I’ve been told, she admitted to breaking into your home and terrorising you and the children. There was some reference to her belief that if she nailed you for the disappearances of your fiancé and friend, it would advance her career. But she showed no remorse, saying she wasn’t sorry and would do the same thing again.”

“Oh. . . well, I’m glad she confessed. That’s something positive at least.”

“Yes, and it does you a favour, apart from not having to face her in court. You’ll be entitled to some form of compensation.”

“That’s not why I pressed charges, I didn’t know compensation was even a possibility,” I replied, surprised by what he said.

“It would only apply if a guilty verdict or confession was entered into the court records,” he explained. “You won’t need to attend court or anything now. Because of your statement and the doctor detailing how the trauma affected you and the children, I would be surprised if the compensation was less than five figures and possibly closer to six.”

“Wow! I honestly don’t know what to say.”

“I’ll let you know as soon as I hear anything. But just before I let you go, I want you to know how brave I think you’ve been throughout this whole ordeal. It took a great deal of courage to press charges against a police officer. Now you can really start to put it behind you and move on.”
“Okay, and thank you for everything.”

“My pleasure. Take care and I’ll speak to you soon. Goodbye Remy.”

“You too. Bye.” I ended the call and felt the smile stretch across my face. This was the best possible news and so unexpected. It was one less thing to worry about. Now I could direct all my energies to the battle which was less than three weeks away.

I was about to go downstairs and join the others when I found a slip of paper had been pushed under my door. It was folded in half and had my name on it in a fancy script. I opened it, filled with curiosity. Inside it said simply,

You owe me!

Carlie M A Cullen was born in London. She grew up in Hertfordshire where she first discovered her love of books and writing.

She has always written in some form or another, but started to write novels in 2011. Her first book was published by Myrddin Publishing in 2012. She writes in the Fantasy/Paranormal Romance genres for New Adult and Adult.

Carlie is also a principal editor for Eagle Eye Editors.

Carlie also holds the reins of a writing group called Writebulb. They have published four anthologies so far, two for adults and two for children, all of which raise money for a local hospice.

Carlie currently lives in Essex, UK with her daughter.

You can find Carlie at lots of different places (I was wondering why that phrase was said in a weird accent in my head – then I realised it was Connor McLeod of the clan McLeod):

Twitter: @carlie2011c
Heart Search, book one: Lost:
Heart Search, book two: Found:

Saturday, 7 February 2015

Carlie and the Search for Betrayed Hearts...

Yo, yo, YO!  I bet you thought I’d been carted off to the funny farm, didn’t you?  Well, strangely enough… no.  Let’s not go there.  Let’s not spoil a wonderful February day when I’ve got the delightful Carlie Cullen sneaking into the asylum to spend some time with me.  And, knowing Carlie, she may be here some time…

Anywho, let’s get on with the interview!  Hey, I’m a poet!  Who knew!?

What’s your name?
Carlie M A Cullen

I won’t ask if you’re related to Edward – you might bite my neck…  Where are you from?
I was born in the East End of London, grew up in Herfordshire, and recently moved from Essex to Suffolk.

I’m feeling suddenly dizzy!  Do you like living there?  If not, where would your favourite place to live be?  If yes, where would you least like to live?
I love the house I’m in now and the area is lovely. I’m really happy here. I’d hate to live in a block of flats on an estate where I’d be scared to go out because of gangs and drugs.

But think of the writing material!  But, yes.  I see your point.  Here, in the asylum, we have gangs of orderlies with their needles.  Not good…  As you’re a writer, is this your ‘day job’?
Yes, it is now. I’ve had to give up work due to a disability so now I spend my days writing and editing – and I love it!!

So a silver lining to a dark cloud?  Tell me about your latest project.
Heart Search: Betrayal is the final book in the trilogy. The series is a Paranormal Romance for New Adult and Adult audiences. It basically revolves around Remy and Joshua, my two main characters and is written in first and third person points of view. This final book is mainly about a traitor who is feeding information to another vampire who hates the occupants of Clavemont Hall (or the manor as the vamps call it), and harbours extreme desires for revenge against them. One of the coven is kidnapped. Jakki, a vampire who is also a psychic white witch, makes various predictions which are scarily accurate. Some of them find out they have powers/gifts. When the hater and his men attack, the coven find themselves overwhelmed, and it’s very much a case of who will survive and will the traitor be unmasked.

Wow.  Exciting stuff!  And?  And??  Oh.  I mean, how do you feel about bacon?  A crazy person once said it was the food of the gods.  OK, I admit that person was myself...
I totally agree with you, Sin. I adore bacon!

What is your favourite film?
Now that’s a really tough question to answer. There are so many films I love, that to pick just one is horrendously difficult.
Okay, I’ve narrowed it down until it came to a coin toss, so after a ‘flip and catch’, it’s come down to Interview With A Vampire.

Ooohhh, good choice.  Watch it with those coins, though.  You never know where they may lead!  Have you always wanted to be a writer, or is it something you found yourself doing one day?
I’ve written since I was a child and it’s something I’ve enjoyed all my life. I’d always hoped to write a book and get it published, but it wasn’t until I’d finished writing my first novel that I realised it was more than a dream. It was suddenly within my grasp and the rest, as they say, is history.

Not all dreams are simply manifestations of our subconscious minds.  Some dreams are solid, corporeal, meaty, juicy…  Oh, I’m back on the bacon again…  Do you have so many ideas they dribble out of your nose if you don’t get them down, or do you have to hunt around the floor and the back of your sofa to find where your Muse is hiding?
So far I’ve been lucky and not had to crawl around dark spaces to find my Muse. She’s been particularly verbose in the last few years.

That’s good to hear.  I know someone who often has to play hide and seek with their muse until it can be caught unawares.  If you were in an asylum, what would your particular delusion or psychosis be?
I think it would either be schizophrenia or multiple personality disorder. Apparently it’s quite common for people in my profession.

Very true.  Not always a bad thing, though.  What genre(s) do you write?
Fantasy and Paranormal Romance

Good choices!  What genres(s) do you read?
Predominantly Fantasy and Paranormal Romance

If these are the same, what attracts you to them?  If they’re different, why do you think that is?
I love the escapism. They take me to other worlds, fantastic places, and with wonderful characters and creatures. I’ve loved fantasy since I was a child and apart from the odd foray into different genres, I’ve always come back to the one I know and love.

I can soooo relate to that.  I’m a big fan, myself.  Bacon – just cooked or crispy?
Just cooked.

Hmmm…  I guess I’ll allow that.  I prefer it a bit more well done – though you do, I understand, make a mean bacon butty.  Now you’re in the asylum with me, how do you aim to get out?  Do you have an escape plan?
Well, if I don’t then I’m sure one of my multiple personalities will have. Hang on, I’ll ask them… between us we intend to overpower one of the nurses, pinch the keys, and let ourselves out. If you want to come along with us, it’ll cost you!

Oh, ‘cos I have my wallet right here in my strait jacket.  Yeah, thanks…

Hey!  Where’d she go?  Looks like one of her other hers managed to grab some keys while I was searching for my wallet.  Well, if you want to find Carlie, look no further than:

Buy links:
Twitter: @carlie2011c

You can find her books here:
Heart Search, book one: Lost:
Heart Search, book two: Found:
Heart Search, book three: Betrayal:

Here’s a short bio:

Carlie M A Cullen was born in London. She grew up in Hertfordshire where she first discovered her love of books and writing.

She has always written in some form or another, but started to write novels in 2011. Her first book was published by Myrddin Publishing in 2012. She writes in the Fantasy/Paranormal Romance genres for New Adult and Adult.

Carlie is also a principal editor for Eagle Eye Editors.

Carlie also holds the reins of a writing group called Writebulb. They have published four anthologies so far, two for adults and two for children, all of which raise money for a local hospice.

Carlie currently lives in Essex, UK with her daughter.

And here’s the ‘blurb’ for Heart Search: Betrayal.  Sounds delicious!

One bite started it all . . .

Joshua, Remy, and the twins are settled in their new life. However, life doesn’t always run smoothly. An argument between Becky and her twin causes unforeseen circumstances, an admission by Samir almost costs him his life, and the traitor provides critical information to Liam. But who is it?

As Jakki’s visions begin to focus on the turncoat’s activities, a member of the coven disappears, and others find themselves endangered.

And when Liam’s coven attacks, who will endure?

Fate continues to toy with mortals and immortals alike, and as more hearts descend into darkness, can they overcome the dangers they face and survive?
Carlie is having a fantastic launch event, and here's a link to an amazing giveaway! and, not only that, Heart Search: Lost is FREE on Kindle on the 7th and 8th of February!