Not a sexy title for a blog, is it? But I do like the picture because, hey, I have a thing for Post-It Notes. 🙂
Can you believe this is already the last week of January? I had so many goals. Some of them I did achieve. Today, I’m retooling plans so I can finish the month with a flourish and start February with a steely purposeful mindset! Next month, I want to wrap up a book; I have several editing projects to complete; and I being the #100DayProject art challenge! So, plenty to do and little time for lazy days—that’s for sure! My sis and I are planning writing sprints to slam some words onto paper, something I love doing but haven’t in quite a while. I’ll also try to do some weekly, if not daily, progress posts on Facebook to keep myself accountable.
Anyone else with me?Want to state some goals you’d like to achieve?Maybe we can figure out a way to keep us moving forward, even if it’s just household tasks, like “I have a closet to Marie Kondo or a garden to prepare for Spring planting.” Does that sound like something you’d like to do?
I never make New Year’s resolutions. They only turn out to be promises I never keep. But being fortunate enough to survive the hell that was 2020, I’ve decided it’s time to change my ways. I have resolved to share what I’m calling “Aspirational songs for the heart” on my Twitter and FB accounts every day.
My resolution started back on August 2nd, when I began posting “Democracy Reset” quotes to keep my spirits up as we here in the US headed toward the November election. I alternated between words from men and women of all races and all nations, words like Eleanor Roosevelt’s, “It seems to me that the least a citizen can do is to vote” to present-day quotes like John Lewis’, “Democracy is not a state. It is an act, and each generation must do its part to help build what we called the Beloved Community, a nation and world society at peace with itself.”
With the advent of then-President-elect Biden’s win, I switched to songs of all types and from all sources that I labeled, “Aspirational songs for the heart until noon Inauguration Day January 20th.” I enjoyed anew the messages of songs like Frank Sinatra’s rendition of “The House I Live In,” the Beatles’ “I Get By With A Little Help From My Friends,” and Chris Williamson’s “Song of the Soul.” Even Broadway favorites like Grand Hotel’s “Let’s Raise A Glass” and Rent’s “Seasons of Love” got into the act.
In December, I switched to hymns and carols that focused on the birth of Jesus, the event Christians like myself use to remind ourselves to be hopeful as we do justice, love mercy and walk humbly before God (Micah 6:8). By the time I reached December 31st and had posted “O Come All Ye Faithful,” I knew I would return to posting songs of aspiration and encouragement as I looked forward to Inauguration Day. My song for January 1st was Sam Cooke’s “Change is Gonna Come.” It was then I made my new New Year’s resolution. I wouldn’t stop on January 21st but would keep posting inspirational and aspirational songs for the heart and spirit for the rest of the year. The unfortunate events of January 6th in Washington D.C. made it all too clear how easy the human spirit can be turned to do wrong when its focus has been warped.
My songs may seem like a drop in the ocean or a ripple against a tide of negativity and uncertainty, but it’s a start. Finding ways to say yes each and every time no keeps jumping in your face is what keeps the moral arc of the universe bending toward justice. Music has always done that for me, and I hope it helps those who read my social media posts to do the same.
My goal is to post 365 different songs, so for a chance to win a $10 Amazon gift card, suggest a song or two that lifts your heart that I can share.
Happy New Year.
All the women in Anora Madison’s family have lived as “Poor Butterflies:” women still longing for – but deserted by – the men they loved. Determined to be the first to escape a life of abandonment, she fled Harlem for Brooklyn, severing ties with both her mother and with the man who broke her heart, Winston Emerson, the father of her child.
Six years later, Anora returns to make peace, but a malignant spirit manifests itself during the homecoming, targeting her mother, her aunt, Winston and their little girl. Determined to stop the evil now trying to destroy all she loves, Anora must finally turn to Winston for help. But will their efforts be too little too late?
Excerpt from Haunted Serenade…
“I never understood how you and Elizabeth could stay here after Diana…” I couldn’t bring myself to say the word. My mother didn’t finish my sentence for me. Apparently, she couldn’t say the word either.
We waited in the shared silence, unable more than unwilling to offer terms of peace.
“A person can will themselves to die,” my mother said. Her gaze drifted to the album cover in my hands. “It’s not so hard where unforgiving spirits reign.”
My gut clenched. “Do you really believe you’re dying, Ma?”
“According to my doctor, I’m sound as a dollar. But when you’ve got more days behind you than in front of you, that’s not saying much.” She directed her gaze to me. “That’s why Cammie is so important. She’s the future. I feel better just having been in her presence a little while.”
“I should have known.” I gripped the album cover with fingers trembling with anger and disappointment. “All that display of affection…you’re only using her to make you feel better.”
“No, Anora.” My mother came over and grabbed my arm with an earnestness that surprised me. “It’s not like that. I—I want the ghosts keeping us apart to die. Don’t you?”
I wanted it so much it hurt. I grimaced but nodded.
“Cammie took one look at this house and asked if it was haunted.”
My mother snorted. “Out of the mouths of babes.”
“Exactly what I thought.” I returned the album cover to its resting place.
The term troubled my mind. Can the spirit of anyone who dies the way my aunt died ever rest?
The question went unanswered, interrupted by my daughter’s screams.
Hmmm. I didn’t realize that image was so fuzzy! But I liked the idea of it. It’s Saturday!
Yes, the weather is crappy here—overcast and in the low 40s (which is freezing for this Southerner). Still, it was nice to wake up without having an alarm buzzing in my ear. The kids don’t have online school, so we don’t have to enforce a schedule. I can do what I want—well, other than pick away at a set of edits I’m determined to finish by tomorrow. Yeah, I work every day. I don’t have a true “weekend” because I don’t have a day job other than my writing. I’m lucky that way, I know, but it also means that I never really have downtime. I have a blog I must refresh EVERY DAY, commitments/deadlines. Although, at least for the last few months, I have been lightening my work schedule for Saturdays and Sundays, just so I can feel like I have actual weekends.
So, today’s work is done. (It’s already close to noon!) Maybe I’ll see what’s on cable to watch. Think I can talk anyone into watching something with me? The fam really doesn’t like my taste in movies. What? You don’t want to watch Die Hard again? I can settle for something less violent. I can. How about a comedy? What? The King of Staten Island doesn’t count? Maybe I’ll hole up and binge-watch The Boys. Who’s with me?
After a year filled with natural disasters, unemployment, political and civil unrest, supply shortages, illness, quarantines, and death, I’d never seen so many people looking forward to a new year than in 2020. However, 2021, so far, has seemed to say, “2020, hold my beer.” Are we in for round two or the next level of Jumanji? Or maybe, it’s as some has speculated, the opening of the Hunger Games.
Whether we are or not, there comes a point where it can all become overwhelming and one needs to take a break. If life and reality is so heavy that all one can think of is despair and feel sadness, it is time to create an avenue of happiness, hope, and light in one’s life. Here are some ways to bring some daily joy into your life.
TikTok. It just isn’t for kids anymore. If you don’t want to create videos, just watch those that do and enjoy the fun they bring to life. Try the dance challenges or play one of the practical jokes on a close friend with a good sense of humor. Enjoy the many artists and musicians that are on the platform. Learn to cook a new meal or about a new culture. Find new books to read or meet your favorite author on a Livestream. Make new friends. There have been some who have even found love there.
Collecting. Begin a new collection. For many, collecting has a connotation of being a boring, dull, or introverted person. And objects collected have been thought of as being limited to art, stamps, rocks, leaves, dolls, and insects. However, anything can be collected. A good friend of mine who loves coffee collects mugs. It is a small way she inserts a bit of happiness into the beginning of her morning by pouring in her first cup of java. I recently met a group of people who collect Mini Brands. Granted, these things are as cute as the dickens. I’d walked past the surprise balls for over a year, never having noticed. Then, I saw a video of someone opening one and became hooked on the cuteness. There’s a whole community that collects and trades these. Some of the Mini Brand collectors have styled mini-kitchens and displays, while others have converted them to refrigerator magnets and jewelry. Another person stated that she collected eye shadow palettes. Some she uses, while others she displays.
Family time. Unfortunately, many people have been furloughed, laid off, or had a reduction in hours. Others, who may still be working from home. Believe it or not, there are positives and negatives in this. A friend who now works from home admitted that although it was complicated at first and took some adjustment, she enjoys not having the mad rush in the mornings to get ready for work or her children off to school. She confessed that she has been able to save money by not eating out for lunch, not spending money on wardrobes and gas, not having to attend conferences or pay for school trips, and not paying for daycare services. Since she commuted to work, she spent over an hour each way driving. Now, she spends that extra time with family. She confessed that she always wanted to be a stay-at-home mother but couldn’t afford it. However, now she is able to have the best of both worlds. Although it isn’t perfect, she is enjoying the time she has while it lasts. She and her family have created new routines. They all participate in making dinner and find creative and fun ways to make cleaning (and other household chores) a game. They have found time to bond and grow closer as a family. Another friend who was furloughed stated that he despised his job but didn’t have the nerve to quit for fear of what he would do to support himself. He was eventually laid off, but he found another job that he is much happier at doing as well as starting a business that he has always dreamed of doing.
New skills. As mentioned previously, many people have found themselves with extra time. Learn something new. A colleague who was planning to get married in 2020 postponed her wedding due to the pandemic and issues with venues and vendors. At first, she was very upset by this and confessed that she cried for weeks. Then, one day as she was watching videos on YouTube, she began getting new wedding design ideas. Later, she saw a DIY project that she wanted to try as centerpieces. Soon, she found herself creating decorations for her wedding that not only is she having fun creating but that also is saving herself money. A coworker reported that she took a page from the movie Julie & Julie. She’s always wanted to learn to cook, and she’s taken this time to do just that.
Increased awareness. This came from my bestie and was a shock to me. I don’t know why since it’s basic. My bestie stated that when shelter-at-home regulations happened, he began to go stir crazy with such a disruption of his life. He’s truly a man on the go. However, once he became limited in where he could go and things he could do, he stated that he became more aware of his surroundings. He began to notice things in his neighborhood and community that he hadn’t previously. One of the most interesting things he said was the following. “When I purchased my home, one of the selling points was the backyard and view. As time passed, it just became a part of my every day, and I overlooked its beauty. I’d never enjoyed it fully. Being home all the time made me feel a bit stir crazy. One day, I took a book outside and read it beneath an oak in my backyard. It was so peaceful, and the weather nice. I wondered why I’d never done that before. I ordered a hammock from Amazon, and now, it’s one of my favorite places to relax, think, read, and meditate.”
Pampering self. Roll the clock back to the fall of 2019 when the world had no clue what was looming around the corner. I had begun making plans for the 2020 football season as well as vacation. In December that year, I planned the items I would need. I decided that each month, I would purchase a few of these items to spread the expense over several months and prevent having to rush at the last minute. In February, when talks of a lockdown began, I didn’t believe it. In March, when it actually happened, I thought it would last only a couple of days. Therefore, I continued planning for my vacations and activities. By the time I realized they weren’t going to happen, I regarded what I had amassed and sulked. I had wasted my money. Or had I? Vacations are about relaxing and escape from the normal world. I wouldn’t call a pandemic being my “normal world;” although, I will admit that it has shaped me a new normal. However, just because my vacation plans had changed didn’t mean that I had to chunk all my ideas. I would just have to find ways to use the items at home and pamper myself. Fortunately, many of the items were skincare and perfumes. Who says one must have an audience in order to be smell nice or have clear skin? I also played with makeup that I had purchased in ways that I wouldn’t normally for work. For example, I had an opportunity to experiment with colorful looks instead of neutrals. Because work has been slower, I’ve found more time to read and watch television series that I’ve missed out on. And instead of feeling I’m missing out on being out with friends, I find soaking in a long bath or giving myself a facial isn’t a bad substitute. We’ve even had a few cyber girls’ nights in which were truly fun, and in all honesty, may have been more fun than actually being out, where parking is a hassle and some people can be real jerks. No matter why it occurred, taking time to do something positive for oneself is never a bad thing.
Neighborhood book libraries. Until recently, I never knew these were a thing. For a couple of years, I’ve bypassed one in the downtown area but mistook it for decoration. It’s shaped like a house. And although it is clearly labeled as a book library exchanged, the words didn’t resonate with me. These are a great way to bring happiness into your and someone else’s life. For one, I hate the thought of throwing a book away. It seems like a waste. The public library system in my immediate area is, in my opinion, under horrible management. In the past, it has been proven that they throw away book donations without considering what they are, are rude to patrons, and act in ways that are most convenient for staff but not borrowers. For example, they keep the restrooms locked because children have not kept the area clean. There are two stalls in both the men’s and women’s restrooms. However, libraries in surrounding areas that have triple the daily traffic, restrooms with a half dozen stalls on each floor, and the same number of staff (percentage-wise), they keep their restrooms both unlocked and clean. But that’s a story for another time. The point is, neighborhood libraries offer communities a place to share books without the complications of library cards, due dates, or the fear donations will go straight to the trash. I will, however, point out that some public libraries feel threatened by the neighborhood libraries and have made partitions to the local government to place restrictions and limitations on neighborhood libraries.
Music. Since the beginning of time, people have found solace in music. It is an easy way to relax, and with so many genres, a person most assuredly can find something he/she enjoys. When I was younger and suffered from migraines frequently, loud thumping music (I know. One would think I would seek silence.) would ease the pain away. Maybe the drumbeats vibrated out the pain. The entertainment industry has long used music to set moods and increase the ambiance. Injecting happy music throughout one’s day can lift the spirits and bring inspiration.
Breaks. Then again, sometimes all that is needed is a break and time away. Media can be toxic, bringing into our homes and living rooms negative energy and bad news on a loop. The week after Christmas, the local media kept harping on severe weather that would occur on New Years Day. During nearly every commercial break it seemed, there was the news commercial to watch for the latest update of the weather at five, six, and ten. And while I’m all for people to be informed, I could have done without the constant reminder of what was to come. And dread was building. At the gas station, people were filling up gas cans for their generators. People planned to hunker down instead of attempting to have at least some type of New Year celebration, even if it was no more than grape juice in a plastic cup in the middle of the kitchen. On New Year’s Eve, there was rain (heavy at times) but no wind, thunder, lightning, or tornadoes. No watches or warnings were issued. And while everyone was relieved, the anxiety had built in so many for days. There is a difference between informing the public and inundating them with fear. And I know there will be those who will think it’s no big deal and that the meteorologist simply missed the mark. And would one hundred percent agree with that if I didn’t live in an area where so many people have PTSD from Hurricane Katrina and tornadoes? But the purpose of this point isn’t to place blame on the media. On the contrary, it is to point out that people need to recognize in themselves those things that are begin trigged and tune them out. Shut off all of social media and chill. There was a news article of a man who had isolated himself in a remote area for over a year. There were no cell phones, cable, or internet. When he left to return home, he had no idea of the pandemic. He’d not panicked, stressed, or been bothered.
Great books. Of course, as an author, I’m going to end by saying a great way to bring happiness to any day is to curl up with not just a good book but, rather, a great one. And why not read something from an author you’ve never tried. During the holidays, I know I stocked my Kindle with new reads. Having a favorite go-to author that will never fail you is wonderful. But when I travel, I know I like to try new things and new adventures. If I’m going to always do the same-o same-o, why not remain at home?
La-la-la-la… I’m so excited! And I just can’t hide it! And now, I have that song in my head, but I think I like it.
PREACHER’S OUT! Did I say it loud enough? 🙂
I’m excited for you all to read it. It’s Book #2 to feature the hunters in the Dead Horse, MT office. I had a ton of fun writing the story, and I think you’ll be able to tell. Nadine’s still my favorite Dead Horse oldtimer!
Well, I don’t know what else to say to entice you into reading the book. I think I’ve probably done enough. Oh, wait! Did I mention it’s FREE in Kindle Unlimited? 🙂
Follow the link!
MONTANA BOUNTY HUNTERS: DEAD HORSE, MT Authentic Men… Real Adventures…
An ex-Delta Force soldier, now Montana Bounty Hunter, finds himself slipping naturally into protector-mode when a small-town dessert chef is threatened by mysterious attacks.
Former Delta Force soldier, Dylan “Preacher” Priestley, is the latest hire for the newly formed office of Montana Bounty Hunters: Dead Horse, MT. He’s just settling into the job and getting to know the community when he meets the owner of Deadly Delights, Laura Pinchot. The attraction is immediate, but he finds he’s a little shy about approaching the curvy beauty, until a rock tossed through her store window gives him the “in” he needed.
Laura isn’t a life-long resident of Dead Horse, but she’s sunk her money into the donut shop and isn’t going anywhere. When a string of mysterious attacks target her store, she’s alarmed but doesn’t think it’s anything more than some kids’ pranks. However, when Preacher witnesses the latest assault against her business, she’s grateful for his quick thinking and protection when it appears the attacks are more personal than she’d imagined. That the handsome ex-soldier appears to be interested in her amazes her; she’s not exactly built like a model, but he quickly puts her insecurities to rest in the sexiest of ways.
With the support of his bounty hunter team, Preacher sticks close to Laura while the team tries to solve the mystery of who is after her. As their connection only grows hotter, he’s determined to keep her out of harm’s way.
Available in eBook now!
Also available in Print! FREE in KU!
If you love the book, do me a HUGE favor. Tell someone else about it! Write a review! You’ll have my gratitude, and I’ll be soooooo much happier writing the next installment of my Montana Bounty Hunters: Dead Horse, MT series! And you really do want to see what’s coming next!
It’s already over two weeks into January. Time moves forward and the New Year is a time for new beginnings. Many people make resolutions this time of year, but I tend not to. I find it puts too much pressure on me and I end up abandoning them before too long. Instead, I resolve to take little steps to make my life better. I did that a few years back with exercising—I promised myself I’d stretch for a half-hour at least four days a week. So far, I’ve kept it up.
My first small step for this year is to cut back on my sugar consumption. I know I won’t cut out sweets totally—that’s never happening—but my goal is to cut back. I think it’s doable without feeling like deprivation. I love 95% dark chocolate, and since my family gave me a lot for Christmas, I’m stocked up for a while. I love it and it fills the craving with hardly any sugar. Plus, it has antioxidants, which are good for me. At least, that’s my story. Now, I need to work on the cookies.
I want to get my creative juices flowing again. Last year was a difficult one for me. Even though I work from home, I found the whole pandemic situation shut down my creativity. For the first time ever, I didn’t feel like writing. I’m getting past it by not focusing on production and instead celebrating any words written. I also want to explore some other creative avenues—to take the pressure off the writing.
The New Year is a time of new beginnings. I want to stay open to any opportunities that come my way and hope you do too.
And speaking of new beginnings, my latest book, BJORN CURSED, is all about them. What would you do if a god ordered you to track a woman who escaped the afterlife only to discover it was your long-dead wife? Bjorn will defy the gods in order to keep her safe, but neither of them are the people they once were. Will their love be enough to overcome every obstacle in their path? Find out for yourself…
Forgotten Brotherhood, Book 4
Lucifer is up to his old tricks, causing problems for the Forgotten Brotherhood. This time, he’s had a woman removed from the Norse afterlife and placed her right in the path of Bjorn Knutson. After the slaughter of his wife and family centuries ago, tortured and broken, Bjorn was cursed as the first Norse werewolf. Now he’s been tasked by Odin himself with killing the woman who escaped. Failure is not an option.
Before he can track her, he stumbles across a woman being accosted by three men in the middle of the night. Even though she’s human, he intervenes and is shocked to recognize the face of the one woman he could never kill — his wife Anja.
She’s also the one he’s hunting…and if he doesn’t kill her then both their lives are at stake.
With the tattoos flowing over his face and body, he was like something out of a nightmare rather than anyone’s idea of the perfect lover. He’d always been a warrior, more at home on a battlefield than trying to broker peace talks. Now he was even deadlier. People feared him—humans and paranormals alike. Only she’d ever looked at him with love.
N.J. Walters is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author who has always been a voracious reader, and now she spends her days writing novels of her own. Vampires, werewolves, dragons, time-travelers, seductive handymen, and next-door neighbors with smoldering good looks—all vie for her attention. It’s a tough life, but someone’s got to live it.
It is cold, and winter is here. You’re mostly stuck indoors because it’s warmer. So, what do you do? Why read, of course! It’s an excellent time to catch up on all those books you received for Christmas. It’s the most wonderful time of the year to read some scary ghost stories.
Wait a moment; you are saying Halloween is long past, and Christmas was last month. It’s chilling, dreary weather, maybe even it snowed where you lived last night, so you want to read something light and fun. What better time for spooky tales, especially those even happening during the winter season in the story itself?
Humans have always sought out horror stories: reading, writing, and watching horror is an entirely rational response to the world. By the end of a book or movie, the crisis will be over in some way, and the danger will have passed: this applies, of course, to fiction, that when the stakes are at their highest, the catharsis is all the more wonderful. Winter horror reminds you that spring will arrive.
It is not about escaping reality but raising the stakes on the fear by adding a dash of a monster, ghosts, or even a serial killer, and then seeing what happens to the characters in wintry conditions that will make things even worse. Most books or stories end happily for the heroes unless there is a sequel in the works. And don’t worry—you are safe and warm, in your home. Right? Wait a moment! Do you hear that?
Some books you might like to check out for that wintertime reading…
The Shining by Stephen King: This is a great book to read. Stephan King is a master of his characters and storytelling. Jack, Wendy, and their son, Danny Torrance, move to the remote Overlook Hotel for the winter as caretakers. For the next few months, Jack, a recovering alcoholic, spirals into murderous insanity. Then there are the ghosts, too. Although the hotel is nominally the malevolent force in this story, for me, it comes down to Jack Torrance as, like a Shakespearean tragic hero, he unravels from within himself. To quote the book: “Monsters are real. Ghosts are too. They live inside of us, and sometimes, they win.”
The Turn of the Screw by Henry James: It might not be winter as the season in this masterful classic ghost story novella from 1898, and yet the story can still chill a reader from 2021. Characters like a man called Douglas relates the story of an unnamed governess who takes a job at Bly to look after two seemingly angelic children on behalf of their uncle, whose only stipulation is that she must never contact him. Miles, the little boy, arrives home from boarding school having been expelled for unknown reasons. Flora, the girl, has an ‘extraordinary charm’, but the governess becomes entirely besotted with Miles. When the governess sees the ghosts of both Quint, a former worker, and Miss Jessell, the former governess, things begin to spiral out of control. Are the spirits truly there? Is the governess to be trusted? Read the book and find out.
The Terror by Dan Simmons: It is a fictionalized account of Captain Sir John Franklin’s lost expedition of HMS Erebus and HMS Terror to the Arctic, in 1845–1848, to locate the Northwest Passage. The ship enters a second summer in the Arctic Circle without a thaw, and they become stranded in a nightmarish landscape of encroaching ice and darkness. Endlessly cold, with diminishing rations, 126 men fight to survive with poisonous food, a dwindling supply of coal, and ships buckling in the grip of crushing ice. But their real enemy is far more terrifying. There is something out there in the frigid darkness: an unseen predator stalking their ship, a monstrous terror always clawing to get in.
Snowblind by Christopher Golden: Twelve years ago, the small town of Coventry, Massachusetts, was in the grasp of a fierce winter, then came the Great Storm. It hit hard. Not everyone saw the spring. Today the families, friends, and lovers of the victims are still haunted by the ghosts of those they lost so suddenly. If only they could see them one more time, hold them close, tell them they love them. When a new storm strikes, it doesn’t just bring snow and ice; it brings the people of Coventry exactly what they’ve wished for, plus the realization that their nightmare is only beginning.
Who Goes There by John W. Campbell: This science fiction horror novella by American writer John W. Campbell Jr., written under the pen name Don A. Stuart, was first published in the August 1938 issue of Astounding Science Fiction. It formed the basis for The Thing movies. You can find this at Amazon, even as a free PDF, and I know a current publisher who got the original version, which had more to the story and published it in its entirety.
That is Frozen Hell: The Book That Inspired The Thing: Recently discovered among Campbell’s papers, this version adds another 45 pages to the story. It also includes a Preface by Alec Nevala-Lee and an Introduction by Robert Silverberg.
A group of scientific researchers, isolated in Antarctica by the nearly-ended winter, discover an alien spaceship buried in the ice, where it crashed twenty million years before. Thawing revives the alien pilot of the ship. This being can assume the shape, memories, and personality of any living thing it devours while maintaining its original body mass for further reproduction. And once it does, who is really the alien and who is the real person, as they must stop it from getting out of Antarctica.
Pamela K. Kinney
Journey to worlds of fantasy, beyond the stars, and into the vortex of terror with the written word of Pamela K. Kinney.
Take a journey along Virginia’s scenic Routes 10 and 460 eastbound to enjoy the lovely countryside and metropolises that spread around these two roads. Most of all, discover that some historical houses, plantations, battlefields, parks, and even the modern cities, have more than touristy knickknacks, ham, and peanuts to offer. Many have ghosts! Bacon’s Castle has spirits haunting it since the 1600s. Stay in a cabin overnight at Chippokes Plantation State Park and you might find you have a spectral bedfellow. The city of Smithfield has more to offer than the world’s oldest ham; it also has some very old phantoms still stalking its buildings. Take a ghost tour of Suffolk and see why the biggest little city is also one of the spookiest. Discover the myths and legends of the Great Dismal Swamp and see what phantoms are still haunting the wildlife refuge. And if that’s not enough, Bigfoot and UFOs are part of the paranormal scenery. These and other areas of southeastern Virginia are teeming with ghosts, Sasquatch, UFOs, and monsters. See what awaits you along 460 south and 10. No matter which road you take, the phantoms can’t wait to SCARE you a good time.
And for fiction for a winter night, HWA Poetry Showcase Volume VII. It is an anthology, not with short stories, but dark poetry that tells terrifying stories. Includes my Lovecraftian horror poem, “Dementia.” It is available in both Kindle and paperback.
The Horror Writers Associations presents their seventh annual Poetry Showcase, featuring the best in never-before-published dark verse. Edited by Stephanie M. Wytovich, this year’s featured poets are K. P. Kulski, Sarah Read, and Sara Tantlinger, plus dozens of poems from the talented members of the Horror Writers Association.
Author Pamela K. Kinney gave up long ago trying not to listen to the voices in her head and has written award-winning, bestselling horror, fantasy, science fiction, poetry, along with nonfiction ghost books ever since. Three of her nonfiction ghost books garnered Library of Virginia nominations. Her third ghost book, Virginia’s Haunted Historic Triangle: Williamsburg, Yorktown, Jamestown, and Other Haunted Locations, had reached a second printing and is now a 2nd edition with extra new stories and ten new ghostly images added, plus a new ghost book, Haunted Surry to Suffolk: Spooky Takes Along Routes 10 and 460 released in 2020 from Anubis Press. Her horror short story, “Bottled Spirits,” was runner-up for the 2013 WSFA Small Press Award and is considered one of the seven best genre short fiction for that year. Her latest novel was an urban fantasy, How the Vortex Changed My Life. In 2019, her science fiction novella, Maverick Heart, released from Dreampunk Press, along with a horror story, “By Midnight,” in the Christmas horror and fantasy anthology, Christmas Lites IX, and a nonfiction story, “The Haunted Cavalier Hotel,” in the paranormal nonfiction anthology, Handbook for the Dead. Five micro horror stories of hers in the anthology, Nano Nightmares, a horror short story, “Hunting the Goatman,” was included in the anthology, Retro Horror, plus a horror short story, “A Trick, No Treat,” plus three horror poems of hers, were included in Siren Call Publications’ Halloween issue, released October 2020. She has a poem, “Dementia,” accepted for Horror Writers Association’s horror poetry anthology, HWA Poetry Showcase, Vol. VII. Of course, she is working on various horror and fantasy short stories and has finished a supernatural horror novel and is also working on a nonfiction book, Werewolves, Dogmen, and Other Shapeshifters Stalking America, for Anubis Press.
Pamela and her husband live with one crazy black cat (who thinks she should take precedence over her mistress’s writing most days). Along with writing, Pamela has acted on stage and film and investigates the paranormal for episodes of Paranormal World Seekers for AVA Productions. She is a member of both Horror Writers Association and Virginia Writers Club. You can learn more about Pamela K. Kinney at http://www.PamelaKKinney.com.