Invitation to Darkness…

Good morning! As you can see above, and may have already heard, I’ve settled on a title for Book 3. Invitation to DarknessIt is truly fitting as I go into the backstory of how things began. Before Amanda. Before Jack. Before the asylum. Where we meet Black for the first time. On the edge of your seat yet? I am, even as I type. I’m working toward a late summer release date, but – no worries –  it’ll be in your hands long before Halloween.

I’m still tossing around the idea of publishing my paranormal journal. 30 years of ghostly experiences, aside from my investigations, makes for some spooky reading. It’s pretty personal, though, so it might wait a while. Plus…Invitation to Darkness may not be the last book in the series… hmm. I definitely need an all encompassing name for the series. Thoughts? I would love some suggestions from my readers. Any ideas?

Yet another project I’ve decided on is a book of my poetry. This is a bit of a tangent from the other things of mine you’ve read. There is a paranormal element to quite a few, but I’ve also written on love, death and, as always, darkness.

And…how are the investigations going, you ask? If you’re local, you probably have your answer. The rain has been unrelenting and it squelched our May 5th date. We are in the process of rescheduling…keeping our eyes on the weather reports. As soon as it dries out and the sun shines for more than a brief minute, we’ll jump. Stay tuned as we’re lining up some very interesting sites.

This was just a quick update…back to putting pen to paper or, more accurately, fingers to keyboard.

Stay Spooky,

Barb

 

 

 

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Brainstorm

Morning, All! I’m trying to type this with a cat across one arm. He seems to think his desires (pets, cuddles, more pets) are more important than what I have to say. Hmm.

A quick update of what’s been going on writing-wise. 🙂  Book 3 is moving along pretty well now. I’ve got the first 70 pages written, with an insane amount of notes that take the story through to the end. Very exciting. I love this stage almost as much as when it’s finished and sitting in front of me. Almost.

While I paused to consider the actions of a couple of the characters (a lot of them are stepping forward, wanting their personal stories told), I painted. This one took a while, but I’m really liking the effect. I initially thought I would darken up the tombstone, but then the bird wouldn’t “pop” as much.

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And then, I was struck by an idea for what I thought would make an interesting short story. This has progressed…although it still should remain a short story…but it has woven itself into Amanda’s backstory. For those of you who haven’t gotten to Shifting to Black yet, Amanda is a ghost hunter with rather interesting sensitivities. She returns in the third book in the series and you’ll get glimpses of this backstory. When the entire short story is finished, I’m considering posting it as an “extra” to those who follow this blog. Of course I’ll keep you updated as I go.

Mabel also returns in Book 3. How could she not? 🙂 Driving this morning, a wonderfully dark idea hit me and I’m in the midst of writing a dream sequence for her that will delight, possibly terrify, and keep you on the edge of your seat as you move toward the final scenes. What is she searching for and why is Black the obstacle in her path???

Who dies? It seems someone always does. Or more than a few someones. Or…they already are dead. But that’s enough for now. I’d hate to post spoilers.

As for my paranormal investigations…they are on the horizon, but much closer now. Weather permitting, we’ll be out on May 5th and I’ll let you know what we find. I can’t wait!

Stay spooky,

Barb

Did you tune in?

Good morning, All! The snow is mostly gone and all things ghostly are coming together.

Over the weekend, David Cook (of The Ghostly Hour with David Cook) asked if I could be the guest speaker on his radio show. He had a spot open Sunday and I happily agreed to spend the hour chatting about my second book, Shifting to Black, and all things paranormal. I’ve been interviewed by David in the past, talking about investigations with my team and my first book. David is an investigator in his own right and it’s an enjoyable and informative time. If you missed it, no worries! You can pop over to KCOR Digital Radio Network and check their archives for March 24th. I’ll also post the link to the show shortly on Facebook. David’s show is on Sunday evenings, live, from 5 p.m. to 6 pm. EST, and he always has fascinating guests on all aspects of the paranormal. Tune in, if you can. You won’t be disappointed!

Since I last posted, things have been flying along with Book 3. I usually write in the quiet mornings when the house is empty, but over the weekend things just “clicked” and I typed late into Saturday night. It was wonderful! (I did have to grab a nap Sunday afternoon, lol). I also just had an “Aha!” moment having to do with a squirrel. Remember that…I’m sure we’ll be chatting about it again once the book is out.

I have a meeting Tuesday night to firm up our investigations. There’s so much going on… it’s a wonder anything gets done in my “real” life.

Stay spooky!

Barb

 

More Ghostly Happenings…

Hey, all!

Oh, it’s been a while, but I’m back and can’t wait to let you know about more ghostly goings-on. If you’ve kept up with my prior posts, my presentation at the I-84 Diner in Fishkill went really well. I had decided to speak about my experiences with the paranormal that led me to becoming an investigator and how these experiences  have influenced my writing. As many of you know, I keep a journal of all the unusual and unexplained things that take place in my life. I’ve done this for the last 30-plus years and I was able to share many of my favorite encounters with those attending the paranormal meetup. It was hosted by Ghost Magnets with a Twist (you can find their group, and information about the monthly meetups, on their Facebook page). Here’s a clip of one of their posts about the evening:

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It was absolutely an enjoyable time and I even sold a few of my books. 🙂  Always a plus.

In the meantime, I’ve been working tirelessly on Book 3, (still need a title, guys…aargh!), going deeply into the background and life story of James (a.k.a. J.P.) Borden, the original caretaker of the asylum. He lost his mother while he was a small child and his father forever blamed him for her death. This set the stage for his superstitious and fearful life, and his endless desire to become “un-cursed” (“If he had more luck, Momma wouldn’t have died.”) His father is a bitter anchor around his neck and his only true ray of sunshine is his daughter. But is she truly his? Finally driven to rid himself of his father, J.P.  follows the advice given to him by…someone…through the Ouija board he found at a yard sale. This can’t, and won’t, end well to say the least.

Sneak peek/possible spoilers: If you’ve read the first two books in the series, you’ll be happy (I hope) to see Jack make an appearance. Joe (the poor, tortured and tormented soul that he is) also isn’t far, and isn’t dealing very well with his death. Caesar is doing well and the ever-present ring’s history falls into place. And Mabel? Well… she’s still around. You’ll find out a bit more about her, “back in the day,” too.

As I ponder plot threads, I find myself picking up my paints more and more often. It seems to quiet and clear my mind. These are my latest.

Ah, but the snow is melting now and there are paranormal investigations on the horizon. I am hoping to get Book 3 out by mid-summer. Real life stepped in and slowed my progress some, as it can sometimes. I will, however, endeavor to get more regular blog posts up…with updates on Book 3, our investigations and the activity that’s been kicking up again in my house. Oh? Didn’t I mention that? Well. That’s for my next blog.

Stay spooky!

Barb

 

The nights are getting spookier… paranormal investigations on the horizon

Hey, all!

Just wanted to keep everyone updated…I’m adding a few paranormal investigations to my spring into summer calendar. I’m extremely excited. As many of you know, my team went through a major restructuring over the summer, with a big turnover in team members. At first this seemed a little daunting…but change always brings new possibilities and we are back and better than ever. The two investigators I will be working with have a long history with the paranormal, both in personal experiences and investigative work.

If you know anyone who is interested in ghosts, spirit activity, or anything paranormal, have them give me a follow. I’ll be posting more of my personal experiences soon, as well as giving updates on investigations and, of course, my writing. As always, if you have any questions, comments or an experience you’d like to share…feel free to contact me!

Stay spooky,

Barb

 

A book update for paranormal fans

Hey, all! It’s -5 degrees F outside, -35 wind chill when it gusts, but we came through the storm well.  Hopefully the wind will die down tonight and the temps will return to more of a “winter normal.”

I’ve been working diligently on Book 3, but had to take a break for a few days as my mind spun on a particular piece of the plot. Where I had envisioned this third book in my series would go has changed drastically…even more so than I have mentioned in other posts. James Borden, the caretaker of New Castle Asylum, has “come alive.” I originally thought I would touch a bit on his backstory, but he has taken hold of the story as if it were his own. And it is.

Don’t think you’ve seen the last of Joe, either…or Jack.

And that’s all I can say on the matter. For now.

While this all played out in my mind, I spent a little time painting. img_1581These are the trees across from the end of my driveway. They can be quite creepy in the dark, waiting for the bus with my son, and they have inspired some of the nightmares Joe had in Shifting to Black.

I’m still unsure of a title for this next book. Any thoughts?

Stay spooky!

Barb

 

A Sneak Peek into Book 3…

Hey, all! Well, the holidays are over and it’s back to work writing.

For those of you not familiar with A Step Into Darkness and Shifting to Black, there has been a dark entity terrorizing those who have come into contact with an old, abandoned asylum and a particular Ouija board. More than terrorizing, actually, with some possession and a bit of death thrown into the mix.

I’ve had a few readers ask about the mysterious ring with the initials JPB (which has “rolled through” the first two books), what’s up with the spirit that Amanda sensed outside of the “murder house” and will Caesar, Jack’s beloved cat, be back? Ahh… Let me tell you… the ring is back, and explained, in the third book. You’ll also find out more about that little girl spirit in the pale dress who turns up in the most interesting places. She has an unexpected tie to one of the main characters. It surprised me when that thread unraveled and wove itself into a few other background threads, binding a few characters together forever. Caesar, that wonderful animal who has a distaste for almost anything ghostly (almost!), will be around, and…  AND… my faithful readers will discover how Black, the dark entity, made his way to this realm.

I just had to share this with you all. Now…it’s time to return to my desk and get to work. If you’ve got any questions, or comments, feel free to shoot them to me. Until then… stay spooky.

Barb

A Peek into the Writer’s World

Good morning! I had decided last week that I would set my writing aside for the holidays…my son is off for his winter break, we have family coming, the baking, the celebrating. When would there be a quiet moment to write?

Well! (there’s always a “well,” lol) As I sat on the couch Saturday morning, I looked over at my Christmas tree and…had the most wonderful idea for the last line of a ghostly story, as the spirit/entity slowly reaches out its hand to place an ornament back on a tree. The story built itself, creepy as heck, and is now outlined on my computer. I set everything aside once again and spent the day wrapping presents, making chocolate cheesecake, cleaning and getting ready for today.

Well! (part 2, lol) As I drove my daughter to work this morning, telling her about the story I had outlined, my mind went on a complete tangent. A new character emerged. Christina. And a darker, creepier story emerged, ready to be written…and it takes place over the holidays. I do believe Black, from A Step Into Darkness and Shifting to Black, may be making another appearance. I’m not quite sure if this will be within the series itself, but I do know it is set in the same area as the other books. Christina’s house is on Wilson Avenue, which was mentioned in Shifting to Black. Hmmm. There’s something evil boiling just out of sight and trying to surface. I can’t wait to write it!

So much for putting my writing aside for the holidays. I think as Book 3 is waiting, my mind is churning. This is great and I’m so excited. I’m not sure if these ideas will turn into full novels, novellas or short stories, but we’ll let the characters decide.

Here’s to a healthy, happy and creepy end of 2018, with more of the same on the way in 2019!

Stay spooky,

Barb

Holiday Spirits and upcoming bumps in the night…

Good morning! I’m back! After what seems like forever, I’m feeling like myself again. The kids brought home a variety of germs and we’ve been under siege for at the last three weeks. We should all be well and ready for the holidays.

In the meantime, a few interesting things have been added to my “paranormal calendar.” I’ve been asked to investigate a private residence up toward the Albany area. It’s a bit of a drive but should be a fascinating case. The reported activity has gone on for a number of years and includes knocks, objects being moved and drawers opening. Those outside  the family have witnessed this as well. The homeowners are hoping that I can give them more insight into the “why” of the activity and perhaps focus on who it might be. Since we’re into the holiday season and the lovely winter weather in upstate NY, I’ll most likely schedule the investigation for early spring. That also gives me time to research the property and interview any witnesses prior to going in. As we get closer to the date, I’ll fill you in on the equipment I’m bringing and how background research is done.

The next event on the ghostly horizon is scheduled for Monday, March 11th. For those of you who are local, I will be speaking at the Paranormal Meetup at the I-84 Diner in Fishkill, NY.  The meetup is from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. I will be speaking about my background and experiences with the paranormal. If you’d like to attend, please sign up for the event on the Ghost Magnets with a Twist Facebook page. If you don’t have Facebook, feel free to contact me and I can add your name to the list (they like to have a headcount for seating). I will also have a table with my books for sale.

For now, stay spooky!

Barb

 

 

Shifting to Black… the latest!

Good morning, all! Things have been busy here… and the reviews of Shifting to Black (the sequel to my first book, A Step Into Darkness) are rolling in. It’s getting very nice comments (and stars) on Amazon and the first “official” review just came across my desk. Amiee Ann, book blogger at Red Headed Book Lover, posted her review this morning.  You can check it out here.

More on the paranormal coming soon. I hope you enjoy the review (and continue on to get a copy of the book for yourself!). Also…a quick reminder for those of you who already have my books in your hands…please leave a short review – one line is fine – on Amazon. These remarks mean a lot to authors and also help other readers find the books more easily due to Amazon’s algorithms. Thank you!!

I’m thinking my next blog post will be on communication with the dead… Thoughts?

Barb