Welcome to my blog everyone. Today I have Alicia Dean visiting and talking about her new release. Grab a seat, and visit for a bit!
Thank you for having me on your blog today, Connie.
I’m excited to share my new release, especially since it has to do with one of my favorite times of the year. Halloween is just a few days away. I loved the holiday as a child and still do as an adult. Unfortunately, I don’t get any trick or treaters where I live, and I miss that. I always loved that tradition whether I was trick or treating, taking my children to trick or treat, or just handing out candy to adorable kids.
The origins of trick or treating go back centuries. One of the earliest influences for the tradition was during the Celtic celebrations of Samhain. Villagers wore costumes made of animal skins to scare away phantom visitors. Banquet tables filled with food were laid out to calm unwelcome spirits. As centuries wore on, people began dressing as creatures such as ghosts and demons and performing antics in exchange for food and drink, a custom known as mumming.
When I was a child, the scares about poison and razor blades in candy were widespread. My parents were very protective and only allowed us to trick or treat on our street, or nearby streets, supervised by them. Of course, back then, we knew everyone in the area. When my kids were small, I was concerned as well, so we only went to houses we knew. They didn’t get bags overflowing with candy, but they had fun and we combined parties and haunted houses with our Halloween celebrations.
What are some of your trick or treating traditions?
My latest release:
A Halloween Anthology – Six Stories by Six Authors
MYSTERIES OF THE MACABRE
Authors Alicia Dean, Leah St. James, Alexa Day, Renci Dunham, Rohn Federbush, and Elvy Howard share Halloween mayhem in 6 short stories:
A masked stranger ~ Teen angst ~ Ghostly appearances
Hot Halloween sex ~ A tropical nightmare ~ Visions from the past
My story is Scarred:
Sometimes, the most haunting scars are the ones beneath the skin.
When Natalie Jayne moved away from her home town ten years earlier, she left behind painful memories, along with Simon, the man she loved. Now, she's back on Halloween night to attend a memorial marking the one-year anniversary of the tragic passing of her childhood friend, Jessica. Rumors that Simon was responsible for Jessica's death unnerve her. Even more disturbing is her unsettling attraction to a masked stranger she meets at the event. Her gift may be the key to unlocking the truth, but will it also lead to heartbreak?
Simon debated slipping out the door without listening to the speech. There was nothing Kristopher Martensen could say that he wanted to hear. He would no doubt extol Jessica’s virtues, paint her in a perfect light. But Simon knew the truth, as did Kristopher. Although he’d loved Jessica, he’d learned her true nature the night of her death.
But he didn’t want to leave Natalie, not just yet. They stood side by side, the warmth from her body reaching out to him, keeping him in place as firmly as a steel cable.
Kristopher stood on a small stage at the end of the ballroom. He wore a white tux with a black tie, his blond hair glowing like a halo, although the image was deceiving. The man was as duplicitous as Satan himself.
He spoke into the microphone, his voice booming throughout the cavernous room. “I would like to thank each and every one of you for coming tonight, to not only pay tribute to Jessica Thacker and her death, but to celebrate her life.” He grew silent and cleared his throat. When he spoke again, his voice was hoarse. “She was a special person, a beautiful soul who loved people, loved life. She would be honored to see the number of people who gathered to pay homage.”
The crowd erupted in cheers. When they quieted, Kristopher said, “While this is a night of reverence and honor, it’s also a night to remember the brutal, senseless way that she died. Although the monster responsible is free, we must never forget, never let him live in peace. Simon Cordell is free to live his life, while our beloved Jessica lies in a cold grave.”
Simon’s heart sped up. Although the people in the room didn’t know he was here, he could feel their anger, their accusation. His skin burned with the heat of their ire. He stepped back, planning to retreat, when Natalie spoke.
“That’s not fair!” Her voice rose in the momentary silence. “Simon was absolved of her death, and you need to let him be.”
Kristopher’s gaze swung to her. “Natalie Jayne?” Even from this distance, Simon could see red suffuse Kristopher’s face. “You have no right to show up here a year after her death, after not even attending her funeral, and speak of something you know nothing about.”
Natalie lifted her skirts and headed toward the stage. Simon wanted to call her back, to keep her from coming to his defense, but she was already approaching the podium.
She moved gracefully up the steps and to the microphone. Kristopher held up his hands as if to push her away, and Simon tensed. If he laid a hand on her…
Award-winning, multi-published author Alicia Dean began writing stories as a child. At age 11, she wrote her first ever romance (featuring a hero who looked just like Elvis Presley, and who happened to share the name of Elvis’ character in the movie, Tickle Me), and she still has the tattered, pencil-written copy. Alicia is from Moore, Oklahoma and now lives in Edmond. She has three grown children and a huge network of supportive friends and family. She writes mostly contemporary suspense and paranormal, but has also written in other genres, including a few vintage historicals. She is a freelance editor in addition to being an editor for The Wild Rose Press.
Other than reading and writing, her passions are Elvis Presley, MLB, NFL (she usually works in a mention of one or all three into her stories) and watching her favorite televisions shows like Vampire Diaries, Justified, Sons of Anarchy, Haven, New Girl, The Mindy Project, and Dexter (even though it has sadly ended, she will forever be a fan). Some of her favorite authors are Michael Connelly, Dennis Lehane, Lee Child, Lisa Gardner, Sharon Sala, Jordan Dane, Ridley Pearson, Joseph Finder, and Jonathan Kellerman…to name a few.
Find Alicia here:
Thanks to Connie for hosting me on her awesome blog.
I write Southern Gothics and cozy mysteries set in southern Virginia. A Red, Red Rose and the sequel Beneath the Stones are published by The Wild Rose Press. Readers sometimes ask me, “What’s so unusual about the literature of the South? How is it different from other American lit?” As a born and bred Virginian, I have a pretty good grasp of the unique flavor of all things Southern. So, here are some reflections on our literary heritage.
Southern literature places heavy emphasis on the significance of family, a sense of community, the burdens/rewards religion brings, issues of racial tension, land and the promise it brings, a sense of social class and place and the use of Southern dialect.
But wait! There’s more!
Certain themes reappear because of the similar histories of the Southern states in regard to slavery, the Civil War and Reconstruction. Our literature reflects a strong sense of PLACE. The South’s troubled history with racial issues continually appears in our writings.
Captain John Smith’s account of the founding of Jamestown 1610-20 was the very first piece of Southern lit. William Byrd kept a secret plantation diary in early 18th century—a critical document in early Southern history. After the Revolution cotton planting and slavery began to distinguish Southern society and culture from the rest of America. Frederick Douglass and Booker T. Washington were stand-out writers of this period.
1884, Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn was the most influential Southern novel of the 19th century, with its frank dealings with race and violence. Kate Chopin’s The Awakening was another early Southern novel set in Cajun communities of Louisiana. Her novel is one of the earliest to deal with women’s liberation from the pedestal men liked to place them on—the need for an identity apart from motherhood and housekeeping.
Folklore, Pentecostal tongues, politicians’ silvery words, tall tales of hunters and riverboat men, slave folklore, brags and songs and sayings that were part of Southern life all come to play in the South’s stories.
People forget their victories and virtues but never their defeats and sins. Thus, Southerners can be hypersensitive to the past, which included racial repression and loss of their own soil in the bloodiest war in American history. Original sin and lost causes cemented the culture.
Some feel the South’s literary success may be attributed to its reluctance to deny its past. It refused to run away from its history, traditions and reverence for form. Let’s face it—the South can’t get over the Civil War. Our compulsive remembrance tends not to reconstruct the actual time of the struggle, but rather to recount the consequent loss of Southern culture and the need for survival. Think: William Faulkner’s The Sound and the Fury, Stephen Crane’s The Red Badge of Courage, Margaret Mitchell’s Gone with the Wind.
Gothic writers leverage details peculiar to the South—old plantations, Southern charm, and belief in supernatural spirits and ghosts, as well as the Gothic elements of off-kilter characters, “not right in the head,” with their broken bodies and souls. Gothics are a perfect read for Halloween.
I love writing about the South where, I say, long-held and hard-felt beliefs battle with modern ideas. It’s a culture ripe for conflict! Welcome to the South!
BLURB: BENEATH THE STONES:
Ashby Overton has everything to look forward to, including a promising writing career and her wedding at summer’s end. But, Overhome, her beloved historic family estate in Southern Virginia, is in financial peril and it is up to Ashby to find a solution.
Interfering with Ashby’s plans is a dark paranormal force that thwarts her every effort to save Overhome. Supernatural attacks emanate from an old stone cottage on the property rumored to be a slave overseer’s abode, prior to the Civil War. As the violence escalates, Ashby begins to fear for her life. Who is this angry spirit and why is his fury focused on Ashby?
Mystery, suspense and romance flourish against a backdrop of Civil War turmoil and ancestral strife--where immortality infiltrates the ancient air breathed by all who inhabit Overhome Estate.
Buy Link: Beneath the Stones: http://amzn.com/B00UF1YM6M
FaceBook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/Susan-Coryell-Author-149075331807592/timeline/
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