We all have backstories

I’ve lived long enough to have quite a backstory, as everyone does. Just try to imagine the extent and wealth of the backstories of my vampires. They have amassed centuries of seductive misadventures, tragedies, conquests, and defeats. I try to provide more clues about how they became who they are and why they act the way they do with each book.

The appearance of Miranda and her offspring presented a unique crisis in the vampire society. Some of the undead decided to embrace this unprecedented opportunity; some tried to take advantage of it and try to use it for their own ends. Others decided it was a threat to them personally and the vampire world and chose to fight against these mortal beings with vampire DNA. All in the vampire world have had to choose sides as they see the Magus try to assert his dominance over the Mordecais by any means necessary.

Some of the undead, both Haute and Common Caste, chose to become nocturnal to escape being bullied, beaten, and used by others. That is a part of their backstories that can bring them firmly in support of the Mordecais. Others left the chaos of a world where societies suffered social disorder and feared for their lives; they escaped by swearing loyalty to the Magus. Still, others were seduced by the lure of eternal life, health, beauty, and fortune. Will fear and/or desire for power keep them on his side?

Vampires, just like us mere mortals, are complicated. Underneath their physical perfection and brilliance, a literal and figurative human heart with all its foibles manages to screw up their best-laid plans, which is fortunate for us mortals.

In the New Year, perhaps you will reflect on your own backstory and how it has led you to where you are today, and how it has influenced your life and given you strength, wisdom, compassion, and a sense of humor. Albeit in my case, mostly a somewhat dark one. Those are the qualities that allow the Mordecai family to overcome the challenges the world presents and the crises that the Magus creates for them again and again.  

I am working with my staff (consisting of my editor/tech person/cappuccino maker husband)  to bring you the next book in the Miranda Chronicles as the offspring, now young adults, take on the challenges of living between the mortal and vampire worlds.

What we love about vampires.

When life is a daily struggle to not yell at your boss or coworkers, get something together for dinner, and be the perfect someone for your significant people: nocturnal maniacs come to the rescue with their seductive disregard for normal life. An hour of reading about vampires before bed is strangely therapeutic. My best friend surprised me when she told me that she loves the Magus! He is the worst of the worst undead. Personally, my favorite vampire is Baron Tristan Mordecai. Of course Alexander, Batu, and Henry do have their charms.  

In writing Gift of Blood, I really enjoyed telling of the continuing adventures of Miranda Ortega, aka Baroness Mordecai. She is forced to choose between the seduction of immortality and the changes that mortality brings. Lethal perfection at night or wrinkles in the sunlight. Her indecision confuses the undead. How could anyone turn down the opportunity to spend eternity amongst them? Tristan Mordecai’s feelings for Miranda and his commitment to their kids, forces him to struggle with his human side.

New of Blood Rising, still in the editing process, is the fourth book in the adventures of the Mordecai family. It focuses on the younger generation of the extended Mordecai family as they take on the world of the nocturnal, seductive, brilliant, powerful maniacs. Angel’s unique relationship with the Magus provides him with wealth and influence, but his feelings for a girlfriend of Jacques might force him to be disloyal. The Oracle, Lady Cassandra, has a vision about Leif that will shock the vampire world. The offspring find it is complicated and difficult to develop serious relationships outside of vampire society. The Magus sinks to a new low to get what he wants from the Mordecai clan. Miranda struggles with standing back and letting the next generation deal with the undead world.

I have collaborated on two novellas with Susan Brown and Linda Jordan, both wonderful authors. Witch Magic and Witch Fire are available on Amazon. We were very excited to hit #1 in fantasy anthologies this year. My fun witch novellas, of course, include a vampire who appeared in Gift of Blood and introduces some grumpy werewolves.

I hope you enjoy the season. Happy Halloween!

PS Thanks to my editor and beta readers for all their hard work.

Vampires, Witches, and Werewolves, OH MY!

It has been a long, challenging year for everyone, but spring brings not only renewal of life to the fields and gardens but also to our communities. Although we are not there yet, more normal life is beginning to return with vaccines available.

I encourage you all to mask up and do everything possible to stop the spread of covid-19. My editor/hubby and I are now fully vaccinated, and we feel a great sense of relief. For the first time in over a year, we were able to participate in a book signing event. And, of course, I was wearing my vampire-approved smiling fangs mask.

I have a few writing projects close to publication. The 3rd book in the Miranda Chronicles series, Gift of Blood, is in the final stages of editing and formatting.  We hope to publish it in early summer. Our newly divorced heroine’s romantic life heats up when she moves to Granite Falls, Washington, and nocturnal suitors pursue her to the Cascades. Miranda finds an unlikely ally at Seattle’s only vampire-approved nightclub, The Funeral Pyre. With the kids about to enter college, Miranda finally reveals her decision whether she will transition to become a vampire.

This winter, I ventured beyond the world of vampires into the world of werewolves and witches. I had the honor to collaborate with two gifted writers, Linda Jordan and Susan Brown, on two novella collections. The first is Witch Magic and contains my story “Extreme Cosplay.” It is a fascinating tale of a vampire and a werewolf who enlist an ambitious witch to help them change places for 24 hours. As in most relationships, issues arise that bring about unforeseen challenges and decisions. Would you want to remain a vampire or a werewolf and refuse to change back?

You can find more about it on our website 3withchesbooks.com. It is now available on Amazon in both ebook and paperback.  https://www.amazon.com

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Even as my editor/hubby is finishing work on Gift of Blood, I have been working on the fourth book in the Miranda Chronicles. It focuses on the lives of the Royal Offspring. Miranda and Tristan watch them explore adulthood and find their way. They move between the mortal and nocturnal worlds, struggling with relationships and finding their place in both worlds.

Some authors plan out in meticulous detail every plot twist and character action before starting their stories. I generally start out having a general idea of what the characters will do, but often they have a way of taking control of their stories and have been known to make me change scenes, plot lines, and even the ending. This is especially true with the clever and always unpredictable Royal Offspring.

I hope you have blooming gardens, full coffee mugs, and enjoy the quiet escape of reading.

Halloween!

October 2020      Vampires and Halloween

               You would think Halloween would be the undead’s favorite holiday, but their vanity keeps them from enjoying it. Only a few of the most attractive Hollywood vampires meet their approval. They particularly dislike the depiction of the undead in the old black and white film, Nosferatu. The Magus said he approved of Grace Jones in The Vamp. They like to see themselves depicted as sexy, scary, and sophisticated because they are. In my humble opinion, Bela Lugosi is the G.O.A.T., but Frank Langella made Dracula charming.

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               “Those fangs are out of proportion,” the Baron complained when he watched Vampire Diaries with his kids. Of course, it became one of their favorite shows.

                        Miranda and the Baron’s offspring have tried to fit in as young adults in the Pacific Northwest. They wear hoodies, jeans, and running shoes except on Halloween when they like to dress up as versions of Blade, Dracula, Vampira, etc. It’s the one time of year they aren’t afraid to flash their fangs.

               The third book, which details their coming to terms with their strange heritage, won’t be released until 2021 due to everyone’s difficulties this year. I’m sorry for the wait, but it will be a surprising read. Miranda’s decision whether to transform or not will be revealed.

               Despite this crazy year, holidays can bring us a sense of continuity. This Halloween I will greet the kids wearing a mask to help keep everyone safe, and if there happens to be a vampire at my door, they will get extra candy. I hope this Halloween brings back happy memories and makes some great new ones.

               Vampires can’t enjoy sweet treats, but you can. Enjoy the leftover candy. It’s Halloween!

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Tristan Mordecai’s Take on Covid-19

The Baron Tristan Mordecai scowled at me, “You call yourself a writer?” He threw my original blog on the floor. “Gibberish about movie suggestions to help with boredom is ridiculous.”

I sighed, “So what do you think I should say to people struggling to cope with the anxiety of Covid-19 weighing us all down?”

He perked up. “We could not exist if not for mankind’s ability to survive crises, wars, disasters, and pandemics.” The ancient vampire considered the centuries he had experienced, in the way I thought about decades. “Even without the gift of immortality, your kind always finds a way to ensure that the next generation will survive and prosper. Though lacking our refined gifts, humanity still has enough intelligent and charitable people, who will show courage during these times of darkness and prevail over ignorance.”

I was heartened by his confidence in mankind. Still, I had to wonder if the nocturnal dwellers would do anything to help. “What will your kind sacrifice to help us prevail?”

With a prideful smile, he stated, “Our parliament has decreed no withdrawals from blood banks for three months.” Then he disappeared.

Apparently, even the vampire world was staying home. Stay well my friends!

Rhapsody in Blood – Now Available!

 Vampire Hunters, Jealous Lovers, and a Mongolian Bodyguard…Oh MY!

The much anticipated, Rhapsody in Blood, Book II of the Miranda Chronicles series, is now available! It picks up Miranda’s adventures after she leaves L.A., her husband Baron Tristan Mordecai, and vampire society for her small rural hometown.  

Rhapsody in Blood goes deeper into Miranda’s history and lineage. This book is more personal to me as Miranda deals with the challenges of motherhood, being a wife, and trying to establish a safe world for her family in a small town.

My family and I lived in Rossville, where Rhapsody in Blood picks up the story started in Rare Blood. It was interesting putting Miranda in a situation where she must fit in for her children’s sake. Unforeseen challenges test her strength, patience, and sense of humor. At what age would you announce to your children, “Daddy is a vampire, but don’t tell anyone.”? Conflicts within undead society converge on her family, causing Miranda to increase her coffee consumption.

I was hospitalized earlier this year for a heart issue. The week after I got home, not wanting to leave the saga hanging, I completed Gift of Blood, the third book, which will be available summer of 2020. Again, wanting to protect her children from the insanity of the vampire society, she packs up her family and heads to the Pacific Northwest, a region hopefully not popular with the undead.

Newly motivated, after completing Rhapsody in Blood, I started working on the continuing exploits of the nocturnal maniacs featuring Miranda’s offspring. My goal is at least one new book a year. I hope you will enjoy reading Miranda’s continuing story as much as I have had writing it. I am extremely grateful for your support.

So many people have contributed to my books, but most of all, my husband Joel who edits, manages the website and is my computer whiz. Be sure and say hello to him if you see us at a book signing.

Enjoy the Read!

Thankful Writer

November 27, 2019

vamp turkey

As my second book, Rhapsody in Blood is being formatted for publication I’d like to use this blog to express gratitude to Readers, other Writers, Clients, Family and Friends that have enabled me to stay on this creative journey.

You have all contributed to my writing. You may have inspired the way my heroine Miranda reacts to a vampire, or a snarky comment made by my fashionista vampire Franco. I may have decided not to kill off a character from the first book because I got feedback that they were your favorite character (that revision took weeks).

I grow as a writer because of all of you! Special thanks to my husband for his months of editing. I mention Bram Stoker, Dracula, and Bela Lugosi in every book because without them my world of nocturnal maniacs would never have been created.

I hope that my writing encourages you all to WRITE, CREATE, SING, DANCE, etc.

The world will be a better place because you share your gifts!

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

 

 

 

Halloween

October 29, 2019

Halloween Greetings!

I love Halloween!  It’s a perfect holiday for writers, all about imagination.  It is a night for children to suspend disbelief and be thrilled by costumes, decorations and a world that welcomes them with candy. It’s a great night to watch a scary movie or share a chilling tale.

Halloween Party
Don’t overdo it when celebrating, you might lose your head.

My vampires don’t mind Halloween if you don’t pretend to be one of them. The Baron dislikes vampire movies because he does not like his children seeing vampires hunted down, and he thinks the fake fangs are ridiculous.  He is especially critical of ‘Blade’, one of my fave vamp films.

“He uses mortals to destroy his own kind. How could you allow our children to watch that?” The Baron once complained to the Baroness.

This Halloween I hope you’ll give your creative side a chance to enjoy Halloween by writing a spooky tale. Consider Mary Shelley, Bram Stoker, and Edgar Allan Poe for inspiration. Don’t worry if the Baron would approve. If you can offend a vampire or anyone else who is uptight or puritanical, you’re doing something right.

Maybe a ghost is haunting your house, or your neighbor has become a zombie. I encourage you to have fun writing.

Halloween Party 2
With a couple friends at a Halloween party.        

This has been a fun week! I was excited to be interviewed by Fiona Mcvie in the UK for her blog authorsinterviews https://wp.me/p3uv2y-95m. It’s always fun when someone I never knew wants to know more about me and my writing.  You never know where writing might take you.

Also, my first short story was published in The Writers Cooperative of the Pacific Northwest’s illustrated horror anthology, Tasting Evil, just in time for Halloween. Tales of murderers, demons, ghosts, Sasquatch and of course Vampires. Filled with hair raising chills and macabre fun in the picturesque Pacific Northwest.

The complete anthology in print form:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1687330433/

Also available in two volumes digitally.

Volume 1 https://www.amazon.com/Tasting-Evil-1-Sonya-Rhen-ebook/dp/B07Y234H4B

Volume 2 https://www.amazon.com/Tasting-Evil-2-Sonya-Rhen-ebook/dp/B07Y233VZY

 HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

The Nocturnal Maniacs have been busy….

August 5, 2019

In July, once again I had a booth at the Arlington Street Fair, and it was amazing. I enjoyed meeting so many new vampire fans. It was surprising and exciting that by the end of the fair I had sold out all the books that I had.  It was touching that people who had read the first book came over to find out if I had the next book available.

I have completed writing the second and third books in the trilogy. I am in the process of completing the final edits, formatting and new cover art. Thanks for your patience waiting for the next installment in the Miranda Chronicles. I want to make sure we have everything just right before I send it out for publishing.

The highs and lows increase as Miranda gets pulled deeper into the world of vampire intrigue. She drinks more coffee, becomes stronger, more impulsive and finds she has new powers as she goes against the bizarre code of the undead hierarchy.Arlington Street Fair 2019

I love writing about my nocturnal maniacs and the mortals who try to cope with their arrogant view of the world. Though at times the vampires’ judgement of racist, abusive, cruel people is difficult for Miranda to argue with. Miranda struggles to keep her heart and lust in check. Tristan continues to navigate the difficult task of parenting brilliant, inquisitive children. Miranda’s growing rebellious behavior, increasingly, confuses and infuriates him.

The Ortega-Mordecai offspring constantly surprise everyone in both the mortal and vampire worlds.

I have started planning the next trilogy centered around the Mordechai children. I will update you all with the latest news as it progresses.  I humbly express my gratitude to all my readers!

Enjoy the Read!

 

 

Coffee Completes Me….

Why do we write? What compels us? The stories itching to come out on the page so they can be shared with anyone kind, curious, or imaginative enough to read them.

At the book signings, the reactions from people are priceless. Some will shake their heads and say, “I never read that stuff, gives me nightmares.” When one of my people realizes I’m signing a vampire book their faces light up. “I love vampires!” I got a t-shirt that says that after one of my book signings. They always say they like to escape into a paranormal/horror romance. Me too!

I enjoy putting my main character into all kinds of crazy situations as the vampire world tries to manipulate, seduce and ensnare her. Miranda surprises them every time. At times she reminds me of the Hobbits in the Lord of the Rings, dealing with amazing powerful elves and wizards yet they find their own special strengths are needed to save the day, or in Miranda’s case the night.

I hope this inspires you to write. No one can tell your stories better than you. I always write with a mug of black coffee nearby. It helps with plot development. So get your beverage of choice, a laptop or notebook and write!