Saturday, December 21, 2013

NEW RELEASE from Lauren Algeo!

Just in time for the holidays, check out this amazing new release by Lauren Algeo!!

It’s time…
This Saturday, author Lauren Algeo releases the second novel in her Hikers Trilogy, Hikers Part Two: Passion.
In this second part, Scott Brewer travels to America following the tragedy at the Grand’s house, and teams up with Mitch Baines, aka Striker25. Starting in Philadelphia, they begin to hunt the surviving hikers and along the way they meet Ellen MacIntosh, a woman with a deep desire for revenge on one particular hiker. Together they journey across the states, encountering death, pain, love, and the most terrifying possibility of them all – is the Grand somehow back from the dead?
To find out more, or catch up on the first part of the Hikers Trilogy, visit:

Or alternatively, visit her Facebook and Twitter pages for the latest news and book links.

Lauren Algeo is a twenty-eight year old graphic designer from London, who currently writes part time. The first part of the Hikers Trilogy, Hikers Part One: Power, was published in January 2013, followed by her second novel, The Perfect Date, in June 2013. She mainly writes in the horror and thriller genres and also has several short horror stories published online.
And as a special treat, Lauren agreed to an interview!
Violet:  Do you listen to music when you write? Have a completely silent space?
Lauren:  I prefer it to be quiet when writing, but as I mainly write on the train during my commute to work that isn’t always possible! I’ve learnt to fade out some of the background noise now.

Violet:  When did you first start writing? What genre do you prefer?
Lauren: I used to write a lot of stories as a child, mainly ghost stories, then a few years ago I began writing again. I started with some short horror stories then moved on to novels, and have now just published my third book.

Violet: What is your favorite book (or who is your favorite author) and why?
Lauren: My favourite childhood book was White Fang by Jack London, and I still have my original sellotaped copy! As I got older I discovered Stephen King, who is now my favourite author. I love the Dark Tower series and IT.

Violet: Do you have another job and if so what is it?
Lauren:  I work full time as a graphic designer at a design agency in London. It would be great to write full time one day though.

Violet:  List all of your titles with a one sentence synopsis of each.
Lauren: Hikers Part One: Power:
A former Detective Inspector, Scott Brewer, hunts a family of assassins, called hikers, who have the power of mind control.

The Perfect Date:
Thirty year old journalist Kate Anderson gets more than she bargains for when she joins a dating website.

Hikers Part Two: Passion:
After the tragedy at the end of Part One, Scott Brewer travels to America to team up with Mitch Baines and hunt the surviving hikers.

Violet: Who is your favorite character? Why?
Lauren: Georgie Duncan from the Hikers Trilogy is my favourite character to write. She’s strong willed and smart, but vulnerable underneath.

Violet: Who is your least favorite character? Why?
Lauren: Nick from Hikers Part One is my least favourite character. He’s an awful, abusive character and writing some of the scenes involving him was very tough.

Violet:  Indie pub or trad pub?
Lauren: Currently I’m an Indie published author as I like the freedom and control it gives me. Maybe one day I’ll move to traditional publishing but for now I’m enjoying the Indie world. It’s a great community with a lot of supportive authors, editors and readers.

Violet:  If you could meet anyone, living or dead, who would it be and why?
Lauren: I’d love to meet Stephen King. After reading his books for so many years it would be great to talk to him about his ideas and inspiration.

Violet: What is your favorite TV show/movie from your childhood?  What is it now?
Lauren: I’ve always been obsessed with anything supernatural. As a child I would watch programmes like Eerie Indiana and Are you afraid of the dark? As I grew up I moved onto Strange but true and Jonathan Creek, anything that would give me a scare. I now love shows like The Walking Dead and American Horror Story.

Thank you Lauren and good luck with your new release!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

I am broken but not fragile, I shimmer but do not shine

Yes, you read that right. I admit it now because it is Christmas and at Christmas you tell the truth, right? I have all but lost my Christmas spirit, clinging to the damaged threads for the sake of my children who still glow with all of the excitement and expectation of Christmas Day. We are baking cookies and turning on the twinkling lights every night, singing carols and listening to them as often as we can. Still I carry this emptiness, wearing it like an open wound rather than a badge of pride. I have frequently contemplated this idea over the last few weeks, mulling over the transparent wound and how it came to be a part of me. To this end I have come to understand and accept a few truths that I previously could not face or simply did not want to.
I. Am. A. Fraud. I walk through every day at a job that I do not dislike but does not bring me joy. I live in a town that allows me to survive but does not feel like home. I smile at strangers and acquaintances, wearing the clothes I am expected to wear and saying the words I am expected to say. But inside I am screaming. I spent more than thirty years searching for my identity, more than thirty years chiseling away the things that did not quite fit but now I am wrapping myself in those very things I worked so hard to strip away. I’ve tried on different careers, different dreams, and different homes. I’ve done what I had to in order to survive, at times barely able to tread water through the dense waters. Now I look at my life and realize that I truly am a fraud wearing whatever skin I find, no matter how ill-fitting it may be. I wonder what happened to me and how I got here. I wonder if I will ever find my way back to the most honest version of myself, no masks or walls, just me.
This is about more than not being able to have my dream job, I am not deluded enough to believe I am the only person who is unable to make a living doing what s/he loves. Do not misunderstand me, I appreciate my job and it is exponentially better than what I have done in the past. I simply am stating that I put a lot of effort into appearing enthusiastic or outraged or proud or whatever strong emotion I should feel at a particular moment in order to disguise my complete apathy. I think my colleagues are on to me though. In fact, I am certain they are aware of my ruse. I attend trade shows and meetings and it is apparent that I do not belong. I lack the passion. I see it in their faces, a light that does not burn in me.
It is about more than living in a place I cannot call home. I’ve tried. Truly. I have tried my entire life to find that feeling of home here in Ohio. I even built a lovely house once. I decorated it in my colors and tastes, customized the kids’ bedrooms and for a time I almost loved it. Almost. There are two places in this world that have ever felt like they could be home to me and I was able to live in one while the other will likely never be a possibility. I should never have left the first. The “me” inside was screaming the whole time I was packing, shrieking even, yet I did not listen because I did not think it possible to fight the things dragging me back to Ohio. And, a part of me had hope. A part of me was foolish enough to hope for something that the other “me” knew was not possible. If I had only listened to the inner “me” I may not be the fraud I am now.
This is even about more than working so hard to be a room parent at a school full of parents who care nothing for me or my “kind.” I have not missed that I do not belong there either. It has been painfully obvious from day one, and only become more apparent with every event. Still, I don the mask and grace the halls for my children. For now they fit. I hope that does not change. But that is an entirely different post. This one is about me and how I am a fraud. This is about how I am failing myself and ultimately my children who have seen the real “me.” I tell my children not to settle. They see me settle every day. I tell them to fight for what is right, not just for the world but for them. They see that I do not. I am boisterous and indignant when I simply want to be left alone. I am quiet and withdrawn when I’d rather be arguing a point. How did this happen?
I have been talking with a friend, a delightfully optimistic person who sees me as far fairer than I truly am and for that I am grateful. Still, I should tell this friend everything. I should tell this person the truth of how broken I am and how it happened. I should not hide my past from those I meet, should not allow them to continue the sunshine and daisies ideas about me. I am not sunshine and roses. Perhaps I once was but that was before I met myself.
And to that end comes the truth of all truths. That one fact I could not face, or did not want to until now. The person who knew me best in the world, the person who loved me best could not handle me in the end. I am not an easy person to love; I know this and always have. I am passion and fire and loyalty and I expect much of the people I love. I expect them to be as loyal as I am. I expect them to be as fierce and passionate as I am – about anything they want so long as they are fierce and passionate about something. I expect them to pull their weight in the relationship and let me into their world. I spent a lot of time trying to convince myself and everyone else that I could settle for less. I tried to compromise things that should not be compromised. I am not taking the full blame for my failed marriage but I am accepting my part in the downfall, my mistakes and my own failures. I again was a fraud and it cost me my husband and my best friend, it cost my children so much more. I was a fraud because I allowed myself to put so much into a relationship with somebody who stopped giving equal effort and I knew better.
So here lies my conundrum. In some aspects of my life I do what I can to blend though I merely end up straddling the line of accepted and outlier. I applied this same compromise to my marriage and lost miserably. Is it better to grab hold of “me” and stay true in light of the consequences? And yes, I am aware that many will say “those who truly love you will love you no matter what” but, respectfully, to those people I say that in 35 years I have not witnessed that love from any other than my parents, siblings, and children. For that I know I am lucky, to have six wonderful people to love me that way but should there not be others? Am I impressively difficult to love or utterly impossible to love? Is it better to suppress and/or destroy the “me” that will forever be on the outside looking in so that I can become a Stepford and blend? Would love built on a fake, lesser version of me be fulfilling? Is that even an option? Doutbful. No. Definitely not an option. So what then is the answer? I guess that’s why I wrote this. I do not have an answer though I know that something must change. Perhaps now that I have made the admission and connected all of the thoughts an answer will present itself. Look there, a little optimism…

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Jingle Bells, Mistletoe & Magic Virtual Ebook Fair

Looking for that extra special read this holiday season?  Snow storms getting you down and leaving you craving a great book with your cup of cocoa?  We have everything you need at the Virtual Ebook Fair!  What are you waiting for??  Dive on in!!

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Presenting a fabulous new release by L.A. Ramsey - PRICELESS

Have you ever wondered if there was any sin that God's grace doesn't cover?  Does a person live who has fallen so deeply in the mire of sin that even God's love and mercy can't reach?  Even when all hope seems lost and you think life is no longer worth living, God's love shines through...somehow...
He works in mysterious ways, even when we make the conscious choice to deny Him.  He wishes for no one to be lost.  No one...
Priceless - Love's True Worth is such a story, a coming of age romance about a young girl faced with almost more than she can handle.  Her life leads her to ill choices that lead her down a dark and unworthy path...until she meets him...until he introduces her to the One who can reach down and save her.  The question remains, will she accept it?  Will she change her ways?
From the back cover...

Of what value is a life?  For some the cost of companionship is a few dollars while to others the cost is a lifetime of commitment to another.  Annequin’s life in Shady Grove begins simply enough, a caricature of the early lives of many young girls who find themselves the victims of circumstance.  Loss and a lack of deep caring in her home eventually drive this beautiful young woman away from her difficult home life to another life that she believes will be her way to happiness.  As far too many in Annequin’s position discover, the road chosen is sometimes paved with pain and disappointment.  With time and the testing of a young heart and soul, the woman from Shady Grove learns the true meaning of love and grace given by others.

Why I Wrote Priceless
I wrote this novel wanting to show that not everyone starts on a pristine path to his or her Christian walk.  Some people may have unfortunate circumstances that leads them down the dark paths of sin and then choose to turn their back on the One who can redeem them.  In Priceless, I show that no matter how dark the night may be, God's light can find a way.
Priceless is available as a digital download on Amazon Kindle, Nook, SmashWords, and soon on Kobo, iTunes, and Sony.  Priceless is available on Amazon as paperback too.

LA Ramsey enjoys writing about her faith in novels from her home with her husband and six children.  Priceless was 19 years in the making.  This is her second novel.  Her first novel is Sunny Beam - The Holy Lion, a Christian romance, available on Amazon. 

Find Lori at:  LA Ramsey, Facebook , Pinterest, and Twitter.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

In my absence....

I've been busy.  I completed NaNoWriMo (YAY!) and that consumed most of my spare time in November, especially over the holiday weekend.  As it turns out IMMORTAL MACHINATIONS is just too long and the reason it wasn't working for me is that it needed to be stretched out and that is my plan.  I hope to have the first installment released Spring 2014 barring any unforeseen setbacks.  Look for IMMORTAL MACHINATIONS updates over the next several months!

Also, I have to comment on a book I just read.  I did it.  I finally gave in and read Dead Ever After by Charlaine Harris. I've read the entire series and I noticed that as it went on it lost a lot of its appeal.  The last few books were rather disappointing in my opinion and this final chapter was abysmal.  I was utterly and completely disappointed in the entire book and had to push myself to complete, half hoping it would get better in spite of all of the fan comments I'd already read.

** WARNING: SPOILERS from here on ** 

It wasn't so much Sookie ending up with Sam (though I was not happy about it) as how disjointed the book felt and some of the random occurrences including Arlene's reappearance and subsequent murder, Steve Newlin's reappearance, and the bizarre "divorce" of Eric and Sookie.  It was all so convoluted.  Sookie did not even talk like she had in previous books.  It was forced and frankly, a complete let down.  I loathe the lack of build up to Sam and Sookie getting together.  It felt like she was settling for him instead of finally realizing she wanted to be with him.  

In short, I was shocked and disappointed by the complete implosion of the series.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Another fabulous guest post... T. Richard Brown

Don't let plan B take over

I've always wanted to be a professional writer. Even as a young man, I enjoyed writing stories. However I was always cautioned that it was tough to get published and I'd need a plan B to make a living while I tried to get published. So I went to college studying biology got married and got a job while writing on the side but, like a lot of writers, never quite having something I thought worth sending to an agent or publisher. Of course I wrote in my spare time. I had to earn a living to support myself and my family.
As time went on I had less and less time to write because more and more was taken up by my family and job responsibilities. Then a little over five years ago something happened. When I went in for what I thought was going to be a routine doctor visit for my worsening back pain the doctor decided it had been long enough since my last M.R.I. that I needed a new one before any new procedures. The scan found something odd in my L1 vertebrae. It turned out to be cancer, lymphoma specifically. Strangely enough as nearly as they could determine it had started in my back rather than in my lymph nodes as is normal. Their followed months of chemotherapy and years of regaining my strength and trying to pay off my medical bills.
So there I was, a cancer survivor, pushing forty with a child almost ready for junior high and I'd still never published anything (outside of an undergrad research paper and some technical documents for work). Then one night I had a crazy dream about being in an accident and having my brain transplanted into a new inhuman body. I thought it might make an interesting short story and decided to try writing it thinking I might sent it in to a magazine or something. Along the way I decided that having the body of my protagonist being a different gender as wellas species might be more interesting or at least more accessible to readers. More people are familiar with gender identity disorder than with those who call themselves other kin after all. In the process though as I examined all the potential results of such a transformation I realized that I wasn't going to do the story justice in a short story. Actually as I started to flesh out the characters and situations in my mind I realized that a single novel may be too short. In fact I was half way through writing my first book when I the voice of a character whose birth I hadn't even written yet came into my head to insist on being the narrator of book three. Yes I'm an author who has the characters talk to me in my mind, I'm told it's not that uncommon.
Just under a year later I had my first book finished, edited and proofread. I decided to self publish feeling that a book about a gender confused bisexual cat girl might not have enough general appeal to get published through a conventional publisher. It took almost another year to finish my second book and now my third is under way. I'm still not selling enough books to support my family exclusively from my writing but I am making a little money off it.
The moral of my story is if you have a story to tell don't wait till after a brush with cancer to tell it. Tell your story through a conventional publisher or through the new world of e-book publishing. Tell your story. Some people may like it some won't. You may make a living off it or you may never sell a copy in your lifetime. Don't let whatever your plan b is take over your life. It will probably take up a lot of your spare time. Treat it like a second job if you want to be serious about it. Whatever story you have to tell, tell it. Stories help us look at the world in new ways and as our world constantly changes we need new perspectives.  

Monday, November 4, 2013

Lisa Day, say hello to the fans of the Emerald Seer!

Wolfkeeper...The respected warrior, and a stalwart leader of his people.

Cassie...A new wife and mother full of fear and unprepared for the future that soon would be hers.

They each share goal. Both want to keep the young child alive. Even so, they will begin their journey as enemies. While tradition and pride stands in Wolfkeeper's way. Inexperience and uncertainty of making the right choices stymies Cassie. With each passing day together their emotions swing back and forth until they reach a breaking point. One realizes only forgiveness and understanding can resolve the conflict between them. Follow Wolfkeeper efforts as he tries to make peace with Cassie in terms she never imagined.

Lisa was kind enough to share an excerpt with us:

Wolfkeeper was nowhere around. Prancing Bear was the one who returned for her son. Before he reached Timothy, Cassie stood up. She was going to defy him and keep her son.
‟No!” she said, shaking her head. She held Timothy tighter to her chest.
Wolfkeeper was nowhere around. The brave reached pleadingly for the baby. ‟Give the boy to me.”
‟No! I have had enough of this, go away,” Cassie replied. He took a step closer. Cassie swung her back to Prancing Bear and ran into the dark woods.
Prancing Bear stayed in the camp, smiling and thinking his friend had his hands full with this one. He found Wolfkeeper rubbing down his horse and told him the woman had fled with the child.
There is not anything like white-eyes swear words in his language, so he borrowed one. It didn’t take long to find her. Cassie had made so much noise a deaf and blind man could find her. He let her thrash about for a while. She had no place to go, and no way to get there if she did. It didn’t take too long for Cassie to come to the same conclusion.
It seemed she knew he was behind her. When he spoke, she wasn’t even surprised to hear his voice. He could have said, go home if you must, or come here I will slit your throat. It did not matter. She didn’t understand him. However, she was lost and they both knew it. She remained sitting on the ground humming while rocking her infant, back and forth.
This continued for a few minutes longer. A silent Wolfkeeper waited for her acceptance of the situation. Eventually, she stood up and followed his lead back to the camp. Prancing Bear approached her and reached for the boy.
‟No, he’s mine,” she protested.
Wolfkeeper faced her. Cassie watched his mouth move, but she did not hear a word. A horrendous terror filled her as she saw the rage take hold of him. She nearly threw her son into Prancing Bear’s open arms. She began to feel dizzy, for she had stopped breathing. Wolfkeeper moved toward her...…..

Buy your own full copy here:

Find all things Lisa Day here:

Lisa Day hails from New Jersey before 'Jersey Girls' became famous. Living in the south for so long she now thinks of herself as a retired southern bell, just born in the wrong century. So, what else is a girl to do but write those pesky stories that live within her head.
Lisa has no desire to be the next big writer. She didn’t start her writing adventure till she was retired. Not having the compulsion to write while young she has no skills to fall back on, or maybe she’d say fall on as ‘fall on a sword.’ Either way, she puts her books out there for people to read with the hope they will find the story interesting enough to over look the lack of a formal training.

Facebook Author Page:
Facebook Personal Page:

Friday, November 1, 2013

It's that time of year again....

NaNoWriMo is here!!  I am sooooo excited and ready to roll.  Though several of my "buddies" have already begun, I am just getting ready to settle down for my first words.  I know this much.  IMMORTAL MACHINATIONS is going to be fabulous now that I have scrapped the previous shreds of manuscript to settle down and do it up right!

That said, my posts will be few and far between this month as I grind myself down for NaNo!

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Halloween Blog Hop

Have I mentioned anywhere that I simply LOVE this holiday?  If not, I'm telling you now!  Something about Halloween just makes me grin from ear to ear like a lovesick schoolgirl.  Is it the overabundance of candy? The thrilling haunts?  The absolutely divine costumes?  Truly I think it is the combination of all of the above mixed in with a healthy dose of jack-o-lanterns, horror stories, hay rides, and the delightful spine-chilling movies!

Like this image? Get it here

And what is Halloween without the perfect costume?  I've had plenty over the years from a Laura Ingalls inspired prairie girl to Marilyn Monroe to Marie Antoinette (before she met the wrong end of the guillotine) to Bellatrix Lestrange (before she met Mrs. Weasley).  This year my costume is taking a back seat to my kids' costumes since theirs have proven to be rather time intensive.  I will be re-using my now familiar Steampunk Willy Wonka ensemble.

I'm adding a few things before Halloween but generally, I just love this costume so it pleases me to don it again.  Of course, my son wanted me to dress as a TARDIS to his 10th Doctor and my daughter asked me to be Gandalf to her Thorin Oakenshield.   They were both a bit shocked as to why I declined both.  *sigh* I hope to post their costumes after Halloween but they have asked me to keep them quiet until then.

Beyond the costumes, I love the goodies.  How fun is it to make a cupcake look like a mummy or a vampire?  What about creating the perfect witch's brew complete with rolling smoke?  I have a thing about specialty cupcakes and each year I try to outdo the previous year but this year I've had to tone it down since I won't be attending an adult party (last year I did vanilla cupcakes with a strawberry liquor filling so everybody could practice a little vampirism).  This year I'm doing dark chocolate fudge cupcakes for my son's class and making them look like mummies...can't wait to show them off but I think they will look a bit like this.... (but better)....

And witch's can I forget that?  I've always loved altering hot cocoa by making it "red velvet" with a little red food coloring and then adding Homemade Marshmallows shaped like fingers or eyeballs (whatever strikes my fancy, really).  The kids always love it and once they are all in bed that special brew tends to get spiked.....not sure how that always happens but it does.

I suppose that's all I've got for now and I still have some preparations to make for this most spooooooky of weeks....I hope you all have a hauntingly good time.....

If you haven't already, swing by these fantastic blogs:
JoLynne Valerie 
Judy Martene
Candi Fox
Andrew Brewer

Next up:
Monica Corwin

And don't forget to swing by this one!
Jennifer Lee Scott

Monday, October 21, 2013

Ready for a little spookiness? Elizabeth Wixley brings it through....

Do you fancy reading something creepy over the Halloween holidays?
I was born in England, and although I enjoy travelling my heart belongs to this rock situated in the northern hemisphere. From the very beginning, I have been a dreamer, loving books and all forms of creative thinking. During my much younger days, I expressed myself through painting and music and attended art school to develop my skills. These days if I pick up a pencil or a brush it is to create dragons or monsters.
One of my other passions is history. I am intrigued by the stories of ordinary people’s lives and how they survived against all odds and in extreme circumstance. The resilience of people amazes me.  At the age of sixteen, I ran away from home, and there followed an uncertain chapter in my own life where I lived in many areas of the UK. From my various adventures, I gained a vast knowledge about ancient cultures and the emotional literacy of people today and how they negotiate their way through life.
Interacting with nature is vital to me, so I am often to be found roaming Dartmoor, and of course, I am compelled to drop into any old pub I come across to enquire about their ghosts. Perhaps because I live on an unusually wet island, I find that I am drawn to water sports. I am passionate about the sea and rivers, so my favourite article of clothing is my wet suit.
My working life recently came to an abrupt end, due to government cutbacks, when my whole team was made redundant. I worked for the Local Education authority where I supported children who had experienced trauma in their lives. I often wonder how those young people are coping now without the much needed support.
My journey through life has often been bizarre with many twists and turns, but it has provided me with ample material for my stories.

My book ‘In the Devil’s Own words’ is a multi-layered book but may also be read on face value as a fantasy adventure. It is set in contemporary Britain, but my characters are sucked back into the medieval period. Although it is an apocalyptic tale it differs in feel from many I have previously read. However, it is the same in that it addresses the age old question about good versus evil and nature versus nurture.
It starts with the discovery of a mysterious book and two skeletons buried under the floor of the village pub. From that point the four main characters, a group of dysfunctional teenagers, are drawn into a dark world where to survive they will need to rise above their issues and work as a team. However, the question is are we ever ultimately able to escape our environment and upbringing?
Please follow the link to find out more:
Please check out my trailer:

Monday, October 14, 2013

Please welcome Margo Bond Collins to the Emerald Seer's Realm

When Dallas resident Callie Taylor died young, she expected to go to Heaven, or maybe Hell. Instead, she met her fate early thanks to a creep with a knife and a mommy complex. Now she's witnessed another murder, and she's not about to let this one go. She's determined to help solve it before an innocent man goes to prison. And to answer the biggest question of all: why the hell did she wake up in Alabama?

When I died, I expected to go to heaven. 
Okay. Maybe hell. It’s not like I was perfect or anything. But I was sort of hoping for heaven. 
Instead, I went to Alabama.
Yeah. I know. It’s weird. 
I died in Dallas, my hometown. I was killed, actually. Murdered. I’ll spare you the gruesome details. I don’t like to remember them myself. Some jerk with a knife--and probably a Bad-Mommy complex. Believe me, if I knew where he was, I’d go haunt his ass.
At any rate, by the time death came, I was ready for it--ready to stop hurting, ready to let go. I didn’t even fight it.
And then I woke up dead in Alabama. Talk about pissed off.
You know, even reincarnation would have been fine with me--I could have started over, clean slate and all that. Human, cow, bug. Whatever. But no. I ended up haunting someplace I’d never even been.
That’s not the way it’s supposed to work, right? Ghosts are supposed to be the tortured spirits of those who cannot let go of their earthly existence. If they could be convinced to follow the light, they’d leave behind said earthly existence and quit scaring the bejesus out of the poor folks who run across them. That’s what all those “ghost hunter” shows on television tell us.
Let me tell you something. The living don’t know jack about the dead.
Not this dead chick, anyway.

About the Author

Margo Bond Collins lives in Texas with her husband, their daughter, several spoiled cats, and a ridiculous turtle. She teaches college-level English courses online, though writing fiction is her first love. She enjoys reading urban fantasy and paranormal fiction of any genre and spends most of her free time daydreaming about vampires, ghosts, zombies, werewolves, and other monsters. Waking Up Dead is her first published novel. Her second novel, Legally Undead, is an urban fantasy, forthcoming in 2014 from World Weaver Press.

Connect with Margo

Twitter:  @MargoBondCollin
Goodreads Author Page:

Be sure to add Waking Up Dead to your Goodreads bookshelves:

Waking Up Dead is now available on Amazon! Here's the buy link:
Book Trailers:

Thursday, October 3, 2013

What to share, what to share....Sample Saturday abound

I love Halloween. Let me just start with that. There is a reason I enjoy writing fantasy and paranormal themed books as much as I love dressing in elaborate costumes.  I always have.  Call me weird, call me nerd girl, call me whatever you like and will stand proudly with my ever so tall handmade hats, smile demurely and thank you for your compliment.  I watch Dr. Who with my kids, I adore the new show Sleepy Hollow, and I am giddy about the upcoming releases of Thor 2 and Desolation of Smaug.  Now that you understand the depths of my nerd girl status you can fully appreciate my adoration of all things Halloween.  Since I was a small girl I have lived for that special season where I could literally transform into somebody else and it is upon us excited I grow with each new skull, each eerie scream and the mass of orange pumpkins gracing nearly every store and landmark around.  It makes me giddy.  And deciding what to dress as takes a year to determine.  So, with that said, I hope you understand why I am recycling this excerpt and why my posts will be few and far between for this week's fair - I have one Thorin Oakenshield costume to create and one Frodo Baggins costume to say nothing for my own, my precious!

Ryder on the Storm on Amazon

Standing at the long, glass-topped bar of Starlight, scrunched between Dan and Shane, Storm felt safe.   Her vision from earlier tucked away in the recesses of her mind, she allowed the thrumming classic rock of the club to ripple through her.  Christmas lights twinkled above, lining the ceiling, and below her beneath the plexiglass floor.  The same lights trimmed the bar and liquor shelves.  Starlight was the hip, new club according to her friends.  They were clearly channeling some sort of big hair band vibes this evening forcing Storm to stifle sarcastic comments all evening.  She was bored.  Other than the music, she found nothing appealing about Starlight.  Her foot refused to stop keeping beat to the medley of Jimi Hendrix, The Doors, Boston, and Lynyrd Skynyrd.  Okay, so the music struck a chord and the boys had agreed to unload her entire truck and help her unpack if only Storm would accompany them for the night.  They even offered to buy her drinks.  Her guilt over sending them away coupled with the scrumptious pizza they’d delivered, well, she gave in right quick. 
The worst part of the experience had to be the get up they’d produced for her.  With all of her clothes packed away in the truck she couldn’t very well argue.  Storm dolled herself up - as in completely out of her element.  In fact, she looked like a pin-up.  Every time Storm caught a glimpse of herself in the enormous floor to ceiling mirrors behind the bar she cringed.  It was uncomfortable only for the fact that men were staring at her and the only thing that staved their awkward advances remained her two beautiful companions.  Storm felt painfully aware that she was not the typical fare for Starlight; the snug-fitting pencil skirt and off the shoulder top stood out in the crowd of spandex and sequins.  Perhaps she’d gone a touch too far with the 20s style coif.  She cursed herself for listening to Dan and Shane.
“Stop fidgeting, Storm.  You look amazing.”  Shane’s whisper tickled her ear and the compliment made her even more uncomfortable.  Retreating behind the glass in her hand, Storm eyed her co-dates.  She didn’t get it.  They could have anybody in the bar; she’d seen the droves of women watching the pair hungrily and shooting her death looks.  Still, they flanked Storm, in the middle of the long bar, and fed her drinks and popcorn in attempts to force fun down her throat.   Storm mentally checked herself; she had to give them more credit.  Dan and Shane were not the average body-building, superficial thugs and she accepted that nobody could call her hideous. 
Sighing, Storm placed the empty glass on the bar and gestured for another from the cute bartender, half clad in stylishly tattered jeans slung low on his hips, low enough to let the world know he sported nothing underneath them.  Baron, that was the name he’d given her.  Right.  Storm could only think of Snoopy and the Red Baron when she looked at him now.   That’s what usually happened.  Something would turn her off so she could no longer look at a man with even remote sexual interest.  Dan and Shane were the same.  Though she still wished she would feel something more toward them, it just didn’t happen.  Storm would always see them as the Hardy Boys, much worse since they’d become police officers.  She didn’t even really know where the correlation had come from.  It just happened one day when they were at a football game, sophomore year perhaps?  She couldn’t be certain.   Regardless, to Storm, Dan and Shane were beautiful to look at but it ended there.  Sad but true.  She sighed again as the Red Baron placed a drink in front of her and attempted to undress her with his eyes for the tenth time that night. 
Turning back to watch the crowd milling about the dance floor in odd rhythms, Storm felt a ripple down her spine and nearly dropped her glass.  Dan’s arm found its way around her waist in an instant and concern flooded his face.
“I am fine, just turned too fast.  Really.  I probably just need to slow down on the drinks a bit.”  Turning her most reassuring smile to Dan, Storm slipped out of his embrace and leaned against the bar.  His face fell and she knew it.  They’d been friends for years, since childhood, and when she’d returned, Storm looked the guys up first.  Well, she’d only looked the guys up.  Storm found out that they’d kept the postcards she sent them from her various locations but knew her well enough to leave it alone.  It was comforting to know they’d kept her secret – until Trin’s death.   She felt grateful they’d outted her for that.  The hairs on the back of her neck stood on end.  Something was coming.  Something she did not want to deal with.  Dammit.  How could she get the Hardy Boys to leave now?
“On second thought, I am not feeling too hot.  Maybe you boys could get me home?”  Storm feigned balance problems and put her arm around Dan’s waist, leaning into his warmth.  That did the trick; she felt his breath catch for a moment and then his arm around her in return.  They followed Shane as he weaved his way through people and random tables toward the door.  Storm didn’t see who Shane nearly collided with but she heard the apologies.  Her body reacted to the stranger’s voice, a blend of silk and iron, coaxing and offending at the same time.  She went rigid, that voice seemed familiar somehow. 

Before she knew what happened, Storm found herself seated in the back of her Beetle and speeding toward Willow Wood.  She felt lightheaded and realized the she had actually consumed more alcohol than she should have.  One of the guys carried her in and laid her in bed.  Storm fell asleep to their hushed argument, making out a few words in her drunken haze, something about immortals and almost blowing it.  Then her focus became convincing herself not to wretch.  She failed miserably and stumbled drunkenly to the bathroom.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Sample Saturday

It's that time again, this awesome Virtual eBook Fair is a wonderful way to find some new reads! This week I'm featuring a snipped from WHISKEY, MYSTICS, AND MEN, the only novella/accompaniment to the EMERALD SEER SERIES to date but it showcases a bit of what I LOVE about Dorian with some clues to his past in preparation for IMMORTAL MACHINATIONS due out 2014.

 “Is he awake, Watson?” Angeline stepped into the foyer and set her bag on the antique side table. She tossed her keys and phone on top and gave the small man a quick hug.

 “Yes, Miss Angeline. He is in the lab. I will bring the food and drinks to you there.” Watson lowered his voice to a barely audible whisper. “I think you will find him much changed. Please be kind.”

“Always, Watson.” Angeline assured Dorian’s most loyal familiar. Contented, he nodded and gestured toward the back of the loft. She made her way down the back stairs to Dorian’s lab.

“Dammit!” Dorian’s voice carried down the hall with a pungent odor of burnt plastic. Angeline could hear the strain in his voice and for a moment considered walking back out the way she came. “Angeline? Is that you?”

Too late. Damn vampires and their heightened senses. “Yes, I desperately needed a break and thought maybe we could watch an old movie. You still owe me a showing of Casablanca.” Angeline entered the room, mentally preparing for whatever she may find. Dorian stood at the far side of the lab hunched over a microscope. A few burners were lit under bubbling beakers and a pair of white boards covered with scribblings blocked the genus maps along the back wall. Watson could not have prepared her for the change in Dorian. Sporting a filthy lab coat over stained lounge pants and a faded white t-shirt he barely resembled the vampire she remembered. His hair hung limp and greasy and dark purple circles beneath his eyes emphasized the pallor of his skin. If a vampire could look tired Dorian would be the poster child for exhaustion. Angeline had to force a smile to disguise her shock.

“Don’t look at me like that, fairy girl. Do not lie to me either. You are lousy at it.” Dorian turned back to his microscope. “I am not in the mood for company. Please see yourself out.”

“Like hell, Dorian.” Okay, so sweet and flirtatious would not work. Angeline crossed the room with purpose and grabbed his arm, in hindsight not the best idea but it got his attention. Dorian wheeled to face her, his face etched with fury. Angeline gritted her teeth and held his gaze. “We are not going to fight now. You are going to stop this madness and join me for a meal. I need my friend and you clearly need me so get over yourself already.”

“How dare you talk to me like that?” Dorian’s voice rose, his pinhole pupils disappeared completely and his fangs elongated.

She’d seen that before but in a much different context. “How dare I? How dare you? When is the last time you have fed? Look at you! How can you help anybody like this? I thought you were tougher than this, Dorian. Snap out of it!” Angeline grasped Dorian at the shoulders, ignoring how thin they felt. “I am not going to pity you; we cannot afford pity right now. You know what is coming and you are useless like this.” She stood there, glaring at him with all the resolve she could muster and waited. Time seemed to stop but for Dorian’s face changing expression – fury, fear, confusion – and finally his pupils returned, fangs retracted, and he focused on her.


“Yes. Now, are you quite through your hysterics?” Sliding a hand to the side of his face, Angeline forced him to keep eye contact. “Watson called me. He said Gregoire left.”

Dorian cringed as if slapped. “Yes. He did.”

“Okay, so he left. You have lived how many centuries? Fought how many times with each other?” Angeline knew there was more to Dorian and Gregoire but she would deal with their issues later. “Dorian, let’s go upstairs. Let me help you clean up, we can watch a movie and you can tell me whatever you want or we can sit in silence. But this has to stop.”

“Will you stay tonight, Angeline?” Dorian seemed himself again, or closer to himself than he’d been in a while. Wrapping her up in his arms, Dorian held her close for a long moment.

“Will you stop this crazy mission of yours?” Angeline stepped back and arched an eyebrow quizzically.

“It is not crazy. It could be crucial. It could –“ Silencing him with her fingers on his lips, Angeline gave a warning look. The vampire nodded in agreement. “Perhaps a break would give me some clarity."

“Or, perhaps I could fill in one of the blanks for you over dinner?” Angeline knew part of the hybrid mystery but did not realize Dorian’s level of obsession and admittedly had been rather caught up with other things. She took Dorian’s hand and gently guiding him upstairs to his elaborate bathroom. He silently allowed her to start the shower and lay out clean clothes. “I will be waiting downstairs to tell you what I know but only if you are clean, groomed, and dressed like the Dorian I know. Deal?”

“Agreed, fairy girl. Well played.”

“Learned from the best, vampire.”

Friday, September 13, 2013

Sample Saturday

This week I'm featuring a delightful little snippet on PacMan, I just love him!
Pac Man snorted and sneezed. He lumbered over, plopped on her foot and rolled to his back exposing his pink underbelly. Some faint scars littered his left side, a reminder of the abuse he’d sustained as a pup. "You are such a big baby. I am not rubbing your belly now. Let’s go up to my room so I can shower before the guys get here." Storm looked up the massive double staircase, modeled after the one used in Gone with the Wind. Cherry wood railings usually wound with seasonal lights were now bare, odd in and of itself; Aunt Trin had always liked the twinkling lights year round. The carpet that ran the middle of the stairs seemed worn, threadbare in a few places where they had been tread one too many times. She would need to replace the lot of it.
Twenty steps to the landing and she found herself gazing out into the back yard, the orchard where she hid as a child, the storage shed where she received her first kiss, the white washed cottage where Aunt Trin kept an herb garden for potions. All looked a bit worse for the wear but essentially unchanged. Storm relished the picturesque quality of the blooming trees; she’d painted the orchard several dozen times and actually won an award for a photography study of the trees. It seemed like an eternity ago. She found herself wondering about the harvest this year. Storm wondered who had handled it last season. Perhaps there were receipts in the study, though she doubted Trin kept much by way of books. Dammit. Stop procrastinating.
Storm’s large boho purse weighed on her shoulder and the duffel bag straps dug into her palm as she climbed the next twenty steps. The room at the top of the stairs had belonged to her mother. Through the open door Storm could tell that Trin had not touched anything since Sophie’s passing. The four poster bed still covered by an heirloom quilt and pictures of Storm on the bedside table, all antique pieces of course, exactly as they had been ten years ago. She forced her feet forward remembering the need for a shower when the stench of sweat and body odor overwhelmed her reverie.
The next two doors opened into guest suites with private baths where Dan and Shane would most likely pass the night. Storm had the room at the end of the hall, opposite her old studio. Storm sighed and pushed open the door to her past. It did not escape her notice that it was the only closed door she’d come across.
Her bedroom looked exactly as she’d left it. The heavy violet velvet curtains were parted and hung over wrought iron tie backs. Sheers of various shades of purple still draped the matching wrought iron bed, the lilac satin bedspread half turned down to reveal silky silver sheets. Yes, she had been in a romantic Goth phase before she’d left. The walls were still plastered with her favorite posters, a shirtless Jim Morrison, Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, several John Hughes movie posters, and a tour poster for Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. Her bookshelf still overflowed with Stephen King, Jane Austen, and Tolkien. A well-worn copy of Catcher in the Rye lay half open on her nightstand.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Massive writer's block, too many story lines and way too many characters

*SIGH* Life has been ever so chaotic secondary to the move, but it's calming down now as I settle in.  Now, if only my mind would cooperate.  I keep seeing glimpses of Immortal Machinations but they don't fit linearly and I'm still researching some things though the stack of books I checked out sit on my desk tauntingly more often than not.  Then there are the other stories and characters popping up at random times just begging for my attention though the words come out awkward and sometimes nonsensical.  I am working to remedy this situation because Dorian's story MUST be told and IMMORTAL MACHINATIONS is so thrillingly amazingly fun for me.  I just hope I can do him justice in the near future.

 To help work out the mental block I decided to work on casting Dorian because he is one of my very favorite characters and I do so love casting.  That said, these are some of the candidates:
Kit Harrington of GAME OF THRONES fame.  I love him as Jon Snow and I think he could really do Dorian justice.

Alex Pettyfer - more than just a pretty face as he demonstrated in BEAST, I think he could rock Dorian's look and master the cool collected vamp of Emerald Seer fame.

Perhaps my favorite of the three simply because I pictured him when I was writing Dorian for the Emerald Seer Series.  As I write Immortal Machinations I feel a bit differently but initially, I pictured Orlando Bloom.

Well, that was MUCH fun but I still have a huge block and now I am just thinking about these incredibly attractive men.  *sigh* Perhaps tomorrow will bring some clarity.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Housekeeping....projects...and freebies

Anybody who knows me knows how much I loathe moving.  It ranks up there somewhere between a root canal and jury duty.  But, sometimes it is necessary.  This time it was.  I had to move forward which meant relocating a bit. Everything else was put on hold while I completed the move - and celebrated  my birthday.

Now I am back at it and practically settled in the new place, however, I've been set back in a few areas.

All of the time packing and so on left my mind with plenty of room to drift which left me re-thinking my current WIPs.  To that end, I'm researching some more for IMMORTAL MACHINATIONS and I am even more excited for my first Steampunk novel.  I've also laid out some more of the story lines for my Moonbeams and *** series (the first installment is available on Wattpad - Moonbeams and ****).  I am hoping to have the next set of "choices" uploaded by the middle of September.

I also have a few upcoming engagements scheduled for September.  In a more casual capacity I will be attending Ohio Comic Con September 20-22nd.  It will be awesome to attend as a guest and not be working a table.  I am hoping this will allow me an opportunity for some exposure and a lot more fun!  The very next weekend I will have a vendor's table at Context 26 (September 27-29th).  This will be my second year at this event!

Finally, and perhaps most exciting, RYDER ON THE STORM will be FREE, that's right, FREE this Thursday (August 29th).  One day only, FREE.

And while you are at it, pick up the thrillingly amazing Treasure of Egypt by the fantastic and talented Barbara Ivie Green.

Friday, August 9, 2013

A second new project....

I do not think it is a secret that I work on several projects at once so I doubt it comes as a surprise that Ms. Violet Patterson has two WIPs going right now.  One is of course IMMORTAL MACHINATIONS and the other is this little baby with the working title Moonbeams and M*** - why the *** you ask?  Well, that's part of the mystery of it!  You see, Moonbeams has multiple possible outcomes and I am thinking that the three main veins with have three different titles.  I'm getting ahead of myself, why not just read what I've got and see what you think at the end...

Beep. Beep. Beep.
Trin groaned and pulled the blankets tighter over her head kicking out with her leg to rouse Max. 
Beep. Beep. Beep.
Her leg found nothing but cool sheets and dead air.  Trin’s hand fumbled outward toward the pillow beside her, searching for the mop of curls usually occupying the space.  Again she came up empty.  Pushing the blankets off her head and rubbing her eyes she blinked at the half empty bed.  No Max.  Numbly, Trin leaned over and pushed the cursed black box on the ground in an effort to silence it.  It landed hard on the wood floor and something cracked but at least it fell silent.  She had to think.  Max had not mentioned an early morning but maybe he got called in.  No.  Trin assessed the room; he had not even been home.  Panic bubbled in her chest as she reached for her cell.  No messages.  No missed calls.  Nothing.  Trin opened her contacts; right at the top was AAAMax., their personal joke that usually made her chuckle.  Not this morning.  She touched it lightly and his face appeared on the screen, grinning dopily with a beer in one hand and a shot glass in the other.  The call went right to voicemail.  Trin tried again.  And again.  And one more time for good measure, just in case before hurling the phone into the mound of blankets. 
“I’ve got a feelin’ that tonight’s gonna be a good night, that tonight’s gonna be a good good night.”
Her Black-eyed Peas ringtone reverberated through the oddly quiet room.  Trin scrambled to find her phone in the mass of blankets.  The caller ID noted “unavailable.”  She normally didn’t answer those calls.  Trin would remember that thought for a long time after she took the call.  Why did she answer it this time? 
“Hello?”  Trin’s voice sounded sleepy and shaky, as if afraid to hear what the caller had to say, or more appropriately, who the caller really was.
“Mrs. Kennedy?”  The voice on the other end was sort of raspy but not unkind.
“This is.”  Trin’s response came out in little more than a squeak.  She did not think this was a telemarketer.
“Mrs. Kennedy, this is Lieutenant Timmons, do you remember me?” 
Trin racked her brain, clinging to the remnants of rational thought as a whirlwind of crushing fears threatened to overtake her.  Rationality prevailed as she recalled the officer on the phone, drawing his thin, pointed face to the front of her mind.  He was a regular at the charity golf tournaments her firm put on, a volunteer at the area Safety Town, and a recent client of Max’s.  “Lieutenant Timmons, how are you?”  Trin tried to sound normal, tried to regulate her voice. 
“Are you at home, Mrs. Kennedy?”  Lieutenant Timmons’ voice changed some, taking on a tender tone, almost as if he hoped she was.
“Yes.”  Trin’s lip quivered.  A piece of her knew where this was going. 
“Is anybody with you?”  The tenderness in the voice was almost too much to bear.  Trin imagined the pitying expression accompanying it and cringed. 
“N-no. Max-“ Trin did not get to finish her sentence.
“Good, two of my officers are on their way to your home. Please let them in and I will be there soon after.”  The Lieutenant paused, waiting for a question perhaps.
“Why?” Trin didn’t want to know the answer, she knew she didn’t but it slipped out.  That happened to her a lot and she always cursed her curiosity. 
“I will explain when I get there.  I’m just turning on to Mercer now.”  Lieutenant Timmons paused then added apologetically, “I’m sorry.”
The line went dead and Trin found herself just staring at a black screen.  Her heart was in her stomach having a fiesta with last night’s leftover spaghetti.  Woodenly she slid out of bed, adjusted her pajama bottoms and pulled a t-shirt over her cami.  She didn’t bother with the bra.  Instead, Trin pulled her robe off the rocker and shuffled down the hall.  She hit the living room as the doorbell rang.  Through the front picture window she saw a police cruiser parked out front.  The lights were off but she was sure that her nosy neighbors, Mrs. Tweed and old widow McGee were pressed up against their windows watching intently.  They would be on their phones with each other speculating what that hippie girl had done now.  That’s what they called her.  That hippie girl.  From day one.  Even to Max.  They would ask how his hippie wife was doing.  She wondered what they were saying about her now.  On another day she would have playfully asked the officers to cuff her and lead her to the cruiser, just for shits and giggles.  But not today.  Today she strode across the room with as much control as she could muster and opened the door slowly.  The officers turned to look at her with mutual masks of neutrality.
“Mrs. Kennedy?” The taller of the two gentlemen addressed her casually.  “May we come in?”
Trin glanced at their gold name plates, Ball and Timmons.  She didn’t answer but opened the storm door and allowed the officers to step inside.  They moved to the middle of the living room and Trin was just closing the door when a dark sedan pulled into the driveway behind her Beetle.  She stood there watching stupidly as the driver’s door opened and Lieutenant Timmons emerged.  He raised a hand to greet her and strode up the walk, his long legs cutting the distance in seconds.  Trin gestured for him to enter and the Lieutenant stepped in to join his officers in the living room. 
“Mrs. Kennedy, I apologize for the secrecy but I wanted to discuss this in person.” Lieutenant Timmons looked tired, more than that he looked haggard.  Trin wondered what he’d been through, wondered how old he really was now that she could see his stubble and the hair he usually kept well covered by his officer’s hat or a Green Bay Packers ball cap.  Now she could see that his salt and pepper hair was now much more salt than pepper and it was noticeably thinning.  The lieutenant had fine lines at the corners of his eyes and mouth that were more noticeable now that he was not smiling. 
Forcing on her most pleasant expression, fighting against the gnawing concern, Trin offered her token response, “Please, call me Trin.  My mother-in-law is Mrs. Kennedy and we could not be more different.”  This was true.  They were nothing at all alike but in truth, being called ‘Mrs. Kennedy’ just made her feel old and matronly – two words she was not comfortable applying to herself. 
Lieutenant Timmons’ face tightened briefly but shifted into a half smile.  “Very well, Trin.”  At least he did not say her name with distaste like so many others of his generation tended to.  Not that she was trying to be ageist, it’s just the way things went for her.  It was even worse when she gave her full name, Moonbeam Trinity.  Her parents had been true hippies and at one time she’d hated them for naming her something so silly.  Not anymore.  Now she embraced it.  Though she wasn’t likely to go around asking to be referred to as Moonbeam, Trin had found peace with it thanks to Max. 
“Please, have a seat, gentlemen.”  Trin gestured toward the mish mash of furniture in their living room.  The men opted for the furniture and loveseat, arranging themselves in an almost protective circle.  Trin settled in her antique wingback chair, a thrift store special that she’d reupholstered in lime green chenille.  It made her feel like a new age Jackie O when she sat in it.  And right now, Trin suspected she needed to channel her inner Jackie.
“Trin, I’m here about Cormack.” Lieutenant Timmons’ face softened considerably into a frown making his fine lines into deep crevasses. 
She almost giggled.  Almost.  Cormack.  Nobody called Max that except for his great Aunt Aislinn who still lived in Killarney on the family farm.  “Max.  He goes by Max.”  Trin breathed the words as if somebody else were forcing them out of her.
“Yes, Max.”  Lieutenant Timmons nodded.  Out of the corner of her eye Trin noticed one of the young officers scoot down the loveseat toward her.  “Max was in an accident early this morning.”  Lieutenant Timmons paused allowing her to soak in that tidbit before continuing.  “He didn’t make it, Trin.” 
The officer on the loveseat reached out for her hand but Trin pulled her knees up to her chin wrapping her arms about her legs.  She did not want to be touched.  She wanted to scream at them that they were wrong that it was not possible.  She wanted to throw something, perhaps that hideous lamp Max’s mother had forced them to take off her hands and display in their house.  She wanted to go back to bed and wake up to Max’s alarm, make love to him and share breakfast in the garden.  She wanted a lot of things but what she did was ask a question.  “How?”
“He was crossing the intersection of Smith and 1st when the other driver t-boned him.”  Lieutenant Timmons’ answer was clear, resonating through the house.  “Max didn’t even know what hit him, Trin.  The other driver is in critical condition but we think he was texting.  Nobody else was involved.”
“Can I see him?”  Trin didn’t know if she really wanted to but the question slipped out. 
“Yes.  We came to take you in to identify him and I can release his belongings to you.  There is some paperwork to complete and I thought maybe you’d want to call somebody to go with you.”  Lieutenant Timmons nodded to the officers who rose, mumbled their condolences and left the house as suddenly as they’d come.  Trin wondered why they’d been dispatched.  In case she flew into hysterics?  In case she went homicidal?  She stared out the front window, past Lieutenant Timmons’ ear, as the two young officers walked across the line to their cruiser and slipped inside and drove off.
It took a moment for her to register Lieutenant Timmons’ voice again.  She trained her eyes on him, trying to comprehend his words but the room was closing in on her.  She felt very insignificant and very alone.  “I want to call my sister.  I want her to go with me.  Or rather, I can have her meet me there.”  Trin stood.  She was on autopilot now, having a sort of out of body experience.  “I left my phone upstairs.  I’ll call her and put some clothes on.  I need to find my keys.”
“l will wait and I’ll drive you.  I think it’s for the best.”  Lieutenant Timmons left little room for argument as he stood, asserting his presence.  She didn’t have the energy to argue. 
“Jen, just let it go.”  Trin threw the scrubber in the pot and whirled on her sister.  “I’m not leaving and that’s the end of it.”
“But why, Trin?  Why are you staying here?  It’s been six months and you haven’t even left your house.  You aren’t showering, you aren’t writing, you aren’t sewing, in fact, you aren’t doing anything productive that I can see and you need to move out of the house anyway.  You’re royalties cannot cover this place and you have no inventory left even if you managed to clean up and score a booth at an artisan fair.  Face it, Trin, one way or another you’re leaving.”  Jen pressed on from across the kitchen where she was actively scrubbing out the refrigerator, her sandy hair falling free from its bun.  Trin wanted to dump the dirty water in the pot over her sister’s head. 
“Drop it, Jen.”  Trin gritted through her teeth.
“No.  I will not.” Jen stood and faced her, eyes like steel.  “You cannot become a shut in.  You cannot give up your life.  Max would not have wanted this for you.”  Her voice softened with the last part.  When she said his name, Jen said it with all the respect she’d had for him.  Had.  Trin turned away.  She didn’t understand.  Nobody did.  Max was gone.  Trin repeated it every day, several times a day but still it was not real.  She could not accept that he was gone.  His mangled face still haunted her dreams but the funeral had been nothing more than a nightmare, a strange out of body experience at best. 

“Trin, you have to make a move.  You have to live your life.”  Jen’s hand was on her arm, soft and warm.  She squeezed lightly, reassuringly, encouragingly.  “Trin, I’m not going to just watch you fade away.  I’m not saying run out and get married again but you have to do something.  Come live with me downtown or move out with Mom and Dad, hell, go to Ireland with that crazy aunt of his who loves you so much.  It doesn’t matter where you go but you have to go, sis.”  Jen pulled her into an embrace, somewhat awkward since Trin’s hands were still soapy and wet but it felt good.  It felt like a little piece of normal had drifted into her splintered existence.  And in that instant, Trin knew her sister was right.  Max would never let her live it down if he saw her like this.  But where would she go?

This is my take on an adult "choose your own adventure."  I used this excerpt to apply for a job (which I apparently did not get) but have every intention of using it in some capacity.  Our unlikely heroine, Trin has several choices before her and I intend to write them all!  First and foremost, where does she go?  With her house and current lifestyle well beyond her grieving means (financially and emotionally), Trin must decide where to go next - 
a) With her younger sister to a stylish, modern loft downtown where her former boho roots may not be as accepted (working title Moonbeams and Martinis)....
b) With her deceased husband's eccentric aunt in Ireland where she'll have to embrace a completely new lifestyle (Moonbeams and Malt Beer)...
or c) With her still-hippie parents who have been unable to relinquish the lifestyle they lived in their 20s (Moonbeams and Marigolds).
One thing is certain, there will be many opportunities for Trin wherever she goes....