Author Spotlight – Billie Sue Mosiman

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Billie Sue Mosiman is the author of the short story YE WHO ENTER HERE, BE DAMNED in the

NEW Vampire Anthology

WRAPPED IN RED

She is also the author of the New

SINISTER –  TALES of DREAD 2013

Billie Sue Mosiman

Excerpt from:

Ye Who Enter Here, Be Damned

As he opened his eyes the dark thickened, and grew as black as the bottom of a barrel. He lay in the depths of a grave. Swaddled in rotting clothing from a former century, his long nails clawed patiently at the shredded satin padding of the coffin. He had been at it even in his sleep-dream.
His heart beat slow as an African drum he’d heard once as a young man in Uganda. It came from a tribe he stalked, a group of primitives who wore carved sticks over their penises and sported black tattoos on their shoulders. He had drained dozens of them before he was done. The memory of blood made him lick his lips. His stomach was flat, his veins collapsed, but his brain festered with atoms sparking and igniting in the center of each brain cell.
Now he listened to his heartbeat, as he clawed away stinking satin and clots of cotton stuffing pressing down inches above his head. Only when he was free and fulfilled would his heart beat with new energy enough to carry him through into the future.
They had pushed the stake through his unholy heart, but as soon as they closed the coffin lid he’d withdrawn it. It had taken every ounce of his remaining strength. The pain, excruciating, left him faint and weak. But not dead. It had taken nearly a hundred years for the damage to correct itself, for it was his black heart that propelled him. With it punctured he had lain like the corpse they thought him for years, dreaming.
His nails reached the wood of the lid, having gotten through the batting. He methodically scratched at it, imagining it clarified butter, imagining it as cloud. The wood gave and rained down bits of damp splinters onto his chest. Finally earth filtered through the cracks. It smelled rank and full of worms, fertile as a river delta. He forced his right forefinger nail into the split wood and pushed it down and down, widening the gulf between him and the ground holding him hostage.

He came forth in darkness -a lucky matter for him. He hadn’t seen the sun for a hundred years, even as a shadow cast on a wall. That great orb’s beam would have rendered him blind for some time. It was not always true they could not take the sunlight. He was a creature living beyond all myths, even the deadly stake through his heart.
He sat beside his own grave, noting they had left a stone marker holding a warning: DO NOT ENTER HERE, FOR THERE BE DRAGONS.
He smiled. He was more powerful than any dragon and longer-lived, for the dragons had long gone from the earth even before mankind swam through the mud puddles as tadpoles.
He raised his head to see the moon and it was full. He arched his neck, letting the light bathe him in silver essence, renewing his soul. For he did indeed have a soul, though a black one. It responded to the celestial body circling the earth to bring reflected sun to those like him, who could not bear the brighter star for too long at a time.
He stood, shucking the tatters of his suit, leaving him a skeletal and naked man. He brought up his hands and ran his fingers through long raven hair, knocking loose dirt. He brushed his face down and clapped his hands to be rid of what earth still clung to him.
He put a hand over his heart, judged it strong enough to animate him for at least a while more, and set off into a lope out of the lost graveyard for the plantation house belonging to his murderer.
He -Charles Highgood -would not still be alive. No. It had been too many decades and taken him too long to release himself from the deep grave. But Highgood’s descendants…they might still be in the big house, unaware he was coming.
For he was coming. READ MORE

Author of more than 50 books, Billie Sue Mosiman is a thriller, suspense, and horror novelist, a short fiction writer, and a lover of words. In a diary when she was thirteen years old she wrote, “I want to grow up to be a writer.” It seems that was always her course.

Her books have been published since 1984 and two of them received an Edgar Award Nomination for best novel and a Bram Stoker Award Nomination for most superior novel. Billie Sue has been a regular contributor to a myriad of anthologies and magazines, with more than 150 short stories published.

The INTERVIEW with Fiona

Name – BILLIE SUE MOSIMAN

Age- What? Oh no. No, no.

Where are you from- Alabama originally.

A little about your self `ie your education Family life ect

I’ve been writing and publishing for thirty years. It’s been my life, along with raising children and being a wife to my good husband. You’ve heard of a life well-spent? Mark me down for that.

Fiona: Tell us your latest news?

My collection of all new short stories was just published. The title is SINISTER-Tales of Dread. Fourteen short stories, many of which will be in anthologies too. I just sold my fifteenth novel, a suspense, to Post Mortem Press, for publication in April/May 2014.

Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?

I began writing in journals and diaries as a kid. I began writing (trying to write) short stories when I was eighteen. I’m not sure why except I always knew I wanted to be a writer.

Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?

When I wrote my first short story. Writers write and that’s what I was doing. I worked at it with dedication and finally began to sell my work.

Fiona: What inspired you to write your story?

I hadn’t written a vampire story since DAW Books published my trilogy of the Vampire Nation novels. I wanted to try one and in my mind I saw a swampy, foggy area in the South and a house where gene4rations of vampires had lived.

Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?

Lately I’ve been called a “quiet horror” writer, meaning the opposite, I guess, of “extreme horror” writer. I am also known for realistic suspense novels.

Fiona: How did you come up with the title?

It came from the quote to the entrance to hell “Abandon hope all ye who enter here.”

Is there a message in your story that you want readers to grasp?

Not really.

Fiona: How much of the story is realistic?

The setting, and I hope the emotions.

Fiona: Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

Some are, but not in this story. The last vampire I knew made me promise not to speak his name in public.

Read more HERE

Author Spotlight – Domyelle Rhyse

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Domyelle Rhyse is the author of the short story

PROMISES in the

NEW Vampire Anthology

WRAPPED IN RED

Domyelle Rhyse

Excerpt from:

PROMISES

“He’s dying.” She watched surprise pool in Anthony’s old, mud colored eyes.
“How do you know this?” Anger and suspicion, tangled with his possessive jealousy, chilled his voice, and Amelia resisted the desire to step back. She couldn’t risk being locked away. Not now.
“You think I’ve learned nothing from you all these years?” She brushed her hair back over her shoulders, letting it fall into a stream of blue-black to her slim hips, with a hand too slender, too pale. “I want to go see him.”
He glared. “You promised to remain with me, Amelia.”
“And I have, and you spared his life. But now he’s dying. I need to go to him.” She softened her voice and knelt with her hands on his knees, pleading with the blue-gray eyes he claimed to love. “Anthony, please? I’ve stayed for so long, never seeing him, never going to him, not even asking about him, but always here with you, just like you wanted. Please let me go. Give us this one night.”
He rose, his body lean and hard, and crossed to the window to peer out into the night. His porcelain skin paled in the moon’s fullness, turning to unshadowed ice. “You wish to turn him.”
“No!” She took a deep, ragged breath against the shock. After so many attempts to escape, to die, after forcing her to promise to stay with him by threatening Nathan, how could he believe she would want to bring the man she loved into this life? “No, I would never imprison Nathan this way.”
Anthony turned and studied her, sucking her into the depths of his gaze. “You will return.”
She heard the hint of desperation he tried to hide. Nodding, she kept her tone even, playing the game that had kept Nathan safe all these years. “I will return.”
“Then go.” A sly smile carved into his marble face. “Give him my regards.”
She controlled her anger. Soon enough she would be free. But she couldn’t leave him thinking he held the upper hand. “You may have stolen me from him, but he has always held my heart.”
She left before he could respond, back stiff with her pride. There was only so much time before dawn, and she had to speak to Nathan before the sun rose. Taking nothing with her, not even a coat to ward off the new winter chill, she fled into the night, racing to the man she would have married if Anthony had not come into their lives.
Anthony. Pale skin, cinnamon hair, regal, flawless, amusing for the first few hours of their acquaintance with him. They had met the night Nathan proposed, on the patio of a tiny bistro. So many had come up to congratulate them, strangers who showered them with well wishes. Anthony waited until the crowd dissipated and ended up spending most of the evening with them. That was a part of his power. He became woven into the moment, subduing all objections without a single word.
He had taken her while they danced, one cool hand in hers, the other wrapped around her slender body, and promised to leave her fiancé alone only if she stayed with him. To keep Nathan safe, she had given her word.
But it was a hard promise to keep. Amelia was unsuited to the life Anthony had given her, the blood distasteful, and she missed Nathan more than the beating of her now still heart. She tried to starve herself, but he threatened her beloved, warned her that death would not save her lover. She had given in, hoping to keep herself pure from what she had become, always knowing that Nathan’s natural death would release her.
The biting air scraped against her skin, but it was nothing against the desire, the need, to get to Nathan. She reached the rest home just shy of midnight. Age and despair touched the sick-laden air surrounding the low, red brick building, bringing a sour taste to her mouth. She stood in the shadows of an old oak, hesitant, uncertain. Nathan would be over 90 now. Did she want to see him elderly and weak, or did she want to remember him as the man she had said yes to on a cool, spring night? She wandered the yard, seeking his scent, stopping outside his window when she still didn’t have an answer.
Her last memory of him was the night Anthony had found them. Handsome despite his too large ears–he kept them hidden under his thick, ash-blonde hair. His eyes, a hazel green, always hard to meet in their intensity, had been one of the first things to draw her to him. She could feel his calloused fingertips and smooth palms sliding over her skin, sending a shiver through her the like of which she hadn’t felt in years.
It didn’t matter if she saw him now. What could have been, should have been, would remain with her forever. READ MORE

Domyelle Rhyse, or domy (as she prefers to be called), started writing at the age of 10 and fell in love with fantasy when a fifth grade teacher read The Hobbit to the class. She started annoying friends with weird stories in high school but didn’t take her writing seriously until after earning a college degree in English and having a family that took pride in interrupting her every minute. Her short stories and articles have appeared in several online and print magazines and anthologies, including Aoife’s Kiss, Beyond Centauri, Golden Visions, and Distant Passages:  The Best from Double-Edged Publishing Vol. 1. As an editor and an admin of Dreaming In Ink Writers Workshop, she’s had the honor of working with a number of authors whose works have been published by both small press and trade publishers. Denyse is the mother of four children and lives in Georgia with her chef husband, her autistic son, and three cats.

The  INTERVIEW with Fiona

Name: Denyse but I only answer to domynoe these days

Age: 25…again

Where are you from: All over the US and Puerto Rico, but most recently settled in Georgia.

A little about yourself: Bachelor’s in English with a Creative Writing Concentration, Associates in Early Childhood Studies, self-trained baker. Been a teacher and an editor, about to go into baking to help the hubs get his name out therehe does the savory, I do the sweet, which pretty much defines our relationship…mostly. I get the spicy in there sometimes. I have four kids, three girls and one boy, and three kitty kids named after X-men. I also run Dreaming In Ink Writers Workshop, a free crit group/workshop that takes all levels of writing and all genres that just turned 11 this year. Also, I’m not as scary as some people seem to think, not a redhead, and am lots thinner than I was 3 years ago.

Fiona: What books have most influenced your life most?

The Hobbit. Prior to that, I read all the standard classics for my age: 101 Dalmatians, Black Beauty, etc. A fifth grade teacher read a little of The Hobbit to the class every Friday, and I’ve never been the same. I immersed myself in fantasy, and now my brain defaults to that genre, even when I dream. Some of my biggest fantasy influences are Anne McCaffrey, Mercedes Lackey, the  Raymond E. Feist/Janny Wurts pair up, Melanie Rawn, Katherine Kurtz, Marion Zimmer Bradley:, and most recently Patricia McKillip (I want to grow up and be like her). Because of these authors, my writing is more visual and has more details in everything from description to culture. I love the beauty in McKillip’s writing and hope one day that mine will be as eloquent, richly textured, and lyrical.

Fiona: What are your current projects?

Out in the wilds are Assassin’s Choice, an epic fantasy on the small press circuit, and Blood Charms, an urban fantasy still being looked at by agents. I’m working on the second book for the Charms series, another epic fantasy in the same world but at a much later time than Assassin’s, and another urban fantasy in the same world as Charms but on the opposite coast and with a different main character. I can’t stop at just one….

Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.

Dreaming In Ink. I’ve grown a lot, not just in my actual writing but also in how I perceive it, because of the input from other members. And it allows me to be social while still focusing on what I want to do, which is write. And having others believe in you, others who don’t say something is cool just because they know you, when you’re having trouble believing in yourself is amazing. And watching them grow and develop their careers makes me proud to have been a part of their lives in even a small way. Past and present members have all been an amazing group of people.

Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
I’d like to. I just need writing as a career to see me.

Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?

I’ve always dabbled in the creative, so probably an artist, an actor, possibly a musician. But never a singer. I’d couldn’t subject people to the torture. That’s reserved for characters.

Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

Strangely, revising. I go through this phase when I absolutely hate what I’m working on. I only keep at it because I’m a glutton for punishment…and I refuse to let anything defeat me. The good news is that coming out of that phase and falling in love again is when I know a novel is about ready for that final polish.

Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?

Experiment and find what works for you as a writer, the process that will enable you to complete what you start, then don’t let anyone tell you that your process is wrong. When I started taking my writing seriously, I had people tell me how I was writing wasn’t the “right” way to do it, and it hung me up for years. Don’t get hung up on right or wrong when it comes to process. Do what works for you. On the flip side, if you’re not finishing projects, you probably need to try a different process, so feel free to experiment. And sometimes a book needs a different process than worked before, so again, experiment. Bottom line: it has to work for you and a pox on all those nay sayers. Read more HERE

WRAPPED IN RED: Thirteen Tales of Vampiric Horror

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Wrapped In Red Master PromoThirteen crimson concoctions sure to tempt your teeth,

from the ancient to the modern,

from the Carpathian Mountains

to the Atlantic Ocean

to the Wild West,

you are sure to find your… type –

Wrapped In Red.

13 Authors.

13 Stories.

Unlimited Vampire Nightmares.

Sekhmet Press Logo 2013

Presents

MASTER eBook Cover

“Wrapped in Red is an anthology that includes not one or two great stories, but all thirteen stories in this collection are strong and well written. These vampires are old school, without a bit of sparkling in sight, for which I was truly grateful. From authors I love (i.e., Billie Sue Mosiman, Patrick Green, Suzi M and Chantal Noordeloos) to authors I’ve never read before, I enjoyed every story in this book.

Just plain good old fashioned horror, well written, well edited and worth a read. When I was asked to review this by the publisher, I wasn’t really sure. But in the end, I sat down and read the entire collection in a day, so if that isn’t a collection worth a 5 star rating, I’m not sure what is.” Kat Yares Vine™ Voice reviewer.

Call for Submissions: Vampire Anthology

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Sekhmet Press LLC is currently soliciting submissions for a Short Story Anthology publication to be released in late 2013. The theme for this anthology is “Vampires.”

I love Vampires! And I love reading new vampire stories ~ I don’t want to put a lot of criteria around “what kind” of vampires should be in your story. Surprise me! That said, I’m not necessarily looking for re-interpretations of the vampire tradition. Classic is just as delicious!

Original Stories only please – no previously published (self or other) stories will be accepted.

The deadline for submissions is July 5, 2013.

See formatting and submission instructions below. Please inform us if you are sending simultaneous submissions (submitting to another publisher).

§ Text files must be sent as .doc, .docx, or .rtf email attachments.

§ Please take a look at http://www.shunn.net/format/story.html for short story formatting instructions. The only difference I am requesting is that you NOT use Courier New font. Please use 12 point font – Times New Roman or Garamond.

§ One story per author please.

§ Send attachments to sekhmetpress@gmail.com

§ Stories should range from 3,000 to 5,000 words.

§ In your email, make sure to include your full name, the title of the work you are submitting, and a word count.

§ A short Bio will be requested upon acceptance of story.

Please spend time proofing and editing your submissions before sending them. Submissions with incorrect grammar, misspellings or formatting will be automatically excluded from the review process. Those submissions that are accepted must be open to receiving minor editorial corrections.

Thirteen stories will be chosen and the authors will be notified by e-mail on or around August 15, 2013. Please do not contact Sekhmet Press LLC about your submission before this time. If your story is chosen, payment includes $25 upon acceptance/signed contract and one copy of Untitled Anthology within 90 days of publication. Publisher will retain first worldwide publication rights for one year from publication date.

Good luck