Anita's Haven

books, thoughts, stories, poetry, interviews, writing

Women in Horror – Interview with Suzi Albracht

Yay, I managed to persuade Suzi Albracht to do a brief catch-up interview, as I have already been honoured with having her as a guest several times. So wonderful to celebrate women writers in horror by hosting a very kind lady, but scary author – Suzi Albracht.

INTERVIEW

How long have you been a published author now? What’s your favourite moment or memory for now?

I first published in 2014. My favorite memory of that was the moment my first book was purchased. I still remember to this day, watching my ranking number plummet by the minute when suddenly it soared back up – a book had been purchased! I lived on that thrilling surge for a couple of hours before my ranking went plummeting again. But in those few hours, I realized that had DONE IT! Me… published… it was real. I still love that moment.

What and how much has changed since you started publishing? How has your approach to writing and marketing changed?

I would say that there are far more books swarming out there trying to grab attention so it’s tough to get people to look. I find that once they do actually read one of my books, they tend to like it. But it’s still hard to keep readers unless your work at marking more than 24/7. Over time, I have fine-tuned my marketing approach. I now use more dramatic graphics and I switch them up, a lot.

Who do you think your readers are? Do you write for a target audience or just any story that comes to your mind?

My readers are those who like psychological fear, readers who like to think, readers who want a bigger thrill than guts spewing on the floor every other page. And now that I’m writing romantic ghost stories, I find that my readers like to be familiar with the locations used. I would have to say that I write the stories that I want to write but I keep in mind my readers and make sure to add little tidbits just for them.

What do you find interesting or challenging in using social media to interact with your readers and fellow authors?

I belong to several writers Facebook groups where we retweet each other. I often find myself wanting to give feedback to my fellow writers to help them improve. But I find that has not always gone well. I now accept that everyone has their own way of doing things. There are a number of writers I talk to online regularly, I think we are kindred souls. But the biggest challenge I have in online marketing is the time it takes to do it. I resent that it takes me away from an exciting chapter I am writing. However, I am adult enough to know that It is a necessity.

What are your goals in writing? What would you like to achieve in the years to come? What are you working on now?

I currently have four fiction books completed and published. I would like to create as many books as I can in a reasonable amount of time. I tend to take longer on my books than some people. I truly don’t understand those who published a book every four weeks. It takes me that long just to do final edits. I think writing is like a good cut of steak. It needs to marinate some before it becomes a fine piece of writing that is unforgettable. At this moment, I am working on The Devil’s Huntress which is book four in The Devil’s Due Collection. At the same time, I am working on The Siren of Diamond Shoals, which is in An OBX Haunting collection. Right after those two, I will work on a political thriller that has been marinating in the background. I also have another ghost book, a stand-alone that is different from my other stories.

What would you say to your younger self, the aspiring writer just learning about the publishing world?

Be patient. Be yourself and never, ever give up.

The Devil’s Lieutenant Books2read.com/TheDevilsLieutenant

Scorn Kills Books2read.com/ScornKills

By the way, apart from keeping readers on their toes with her intense stories, Suzi also designs and redesigns covers, and not just her own, so feel free to drop by her book cover site – www.wickedlyawesomedesigns.com .

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A Love Haunting by Suzi Albracht

Introducing an unusual story this Valentine season, from the Queen of Scream – Suzi Albracht. Trying to persuade her to do a follow-up interview soon. Fingers crossed!

A Love Haunting

Genre: Paranormal Romance/Ghosts
Books2read.com/ALoveHaunting

A young couple driving home from vacation in the OBX become involved in a freak car crash. Jordan Snow, the husband, is killed on impact. His wife hangs upside down in her seat. She has a concussion and her back broken in two spots. When Heaven’s light comes to collect Jordan and the baby, Jordan stays behind to get help for his wife, Emily.

Now Jordan is stuck on earth. He aimlessly wanders the beach towns of the OBX until he meets a skateboarding angel named Luke. With Luke’s help, Jordan forms friendships with several other ghosts confined to The Black Pelican restaurant since the 1800s. When Luke and the others find out Jake has a wish – one last night with Emily so he can say goodbye – they band together to do the impossible and fulfill Jordan’s wish. However, when the storm of the century knocks out power and threatens to thwart their plans, it looks like all is lost. Will Jordan get his last kiss goodbye?

Suzi Albracht

SuziAlbracht@aol.com

Told you it was unusual;) – but worth checking out. Trust me.

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Stewart Bint rises the book charts again!

A very intriguing author and wonderful person, Stewart Bint, has another book out! It hadn’t really taken a proper stroll into the publishing world, but it is already making its way up on all the book charts. Give it a go -Stewart’s writing never disappoints. 

Here is what the book is about and where to find it…


The Marquand family fled their home on Jersey, in the Channel Islands, just before the German occupation during World War II, and never returned. 

Now, it’s the summer of 1983, and the once opulent Idlewild mansion is crumbling and derelict. The mansion holds a mysterious lure for 18-year-old David Simeon, who dreams of Idlewild years past, as it used to be. But who is the young girl he sees, endlessly wandering through its corridors?

As the nerve-shattering link between David, the girl, and the mysterious Idlewild comes to light, is it too late to stop the seeds of destruction and world domination planted there long ago, during Adolf Hitler’s last desperate throw of the dice in World War II?

Fantasy, science fiction, horror and paranormal mingle in To Rise Again, as the threads of 1945 and 1983 slowly intertwine to reveal a world on the brink of destruction.  

http://mybook.to/RiseAgain

Previous hits by Stewart Bint:

And…

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Why authors ♡ their characters – by Stewart Bint

Stewart Bint is an amazing author I’ve had the pleasure of meeting in the Awethors group. This man of many talents and a truly kind person, shares with you today his favourite character.


WHY I LOVE ABIGAIL CARTER – by Stewart Bint

I’ve made an unusual choice with featuring this character, Abigail Carter, who I particularly like from my most recent novel, The Jigsaw And The Fan.

Why unusual? Because apart from just one three-page scene of her own towards the end of the book, she is only mentioned two or three times in passing. 

But I hope with what we see and hear through Abigail in this one scene shows readers the true nature and character of her dead husband – our hero, Albert Carter. Until this point Albert’s antics could definitely polarise opinion…you either support him or violently disagree with him; there’s no real middle ground. And that is why I love Abigail so much.

It’s amazing how things work out, isn’t it? This scene wasn’t in the original manuscript, and my publisher’s editor said she wanted to know a little more about Abigail. As her role had only been in passing and in flashbacks until then, I wrote Abigail’s three pages as an epilogue. But my editor said no. She absolutely loved the final line of the manuscript, which everyone tells me is an absolute stunner, and she told me to include the scene earlier on.

I felt that with a little rewriting the episode could really pave the way for what happens when Albert meets his final destiny. And do you know what? I believe it really works in that way. I hope everyone reading the pages where Saint Christopher passes judgement on Albert will relate back to Abigail’s scene in the cemetery, and see why the story ends in the way it does. 

So I’m hoping that thanks to Abigail, all readers will finish with the same opinion of Albert.  

Let’s take a look now at our last glimpse of Abigail in The Jigsaw And The Fan:    

And as Abigail turned away from the grave, her vision blurred.

She blamed the shaft of sunlight slanting through the branches of the ancient Yew tree. But in reality it was the tear which paused in her eye before trickling its way slowly down her cheek.

She looked back over her shoulder, one last glance at the grave.

“Goodbye love, God bless.”         

Links:

https://twitter.com/AuthorSJB

http://stewartbintauthor.weebly.com/

https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/the-jigsaw-and-the-fan/id1161253770?mt=11

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Why authors ♡ their characters – by Suzi Albracht

Suzi Albracht is an author of intriguing horror books with a flare for punishment on those who so deserve it. But today, she is showing us a romantic, loving side to her lead character. 

Why I love Mikael Ruskoff.

Mikael appears in all of my books in The Devil’s Due Collection but one book, Death Most Wicked, is his story. You meet him when he is in the best time of his life. In love with his wife, taking care of his mother, being a good role model for his son. Later on, you learn how his life darkens and evil tries to snatch his soul. This tiny look inside shows the reader that even horror books can have romance and charm in them. Let me share with you why Mikael is the kind of man who makes my heart swoon.

“Up near Annapolis. Near that gated community we drove past last year when we were out looking at Christmas lights, remember? You had remarked how you love the neighborhoods up there. This one has a hot tub, four bedrooms, five baths, and a stone fireplace in the master bedroom. Bianca told me about it. She has connections with the realtor. She said it’s not officially on the market yet.”

“That nice, huh?”

“Even nicer. But we can’t leave D.C. right now because of your job, so I told her we couldn’t consider it.”

“But you like it?” Mikael pulled her chin up so their eyes met.

“I love it.” She nibbled on her lip and lowered her eyes. Mikael stroked her hair and watched her face for a second as if he were thinking.

“Then make an appointment for us.”

Tatiana’s eyes flew open. “But we have to live in the District.”

“I’ll make it work. And if I can’t, then I’ll apply to the Annapolis Detective Division.”

Tatiana rolled on top of Mikael, causing their wine to slosh over the sides of the goblets. She rained kisses over his face. He lay back with a smile on his face. He loved making his wife happy. It was right up there with pleasing his son.

After several minutes, Tatiana rolled back over and stared at the stars with a huge grin on her face.

“Oh honey, you’re going to love it too. There’s room for your pool table and drums set and… it has a small mother-in-law apartment over the garage.”

Mikael raised his eyebrows and shook his head. “For Mom? Oh baby, you have no idea what you are getting into.”

“I like your Mom.”

“And she likes you, but having my mother that close? Mom can be over-bearing if she gets the chance.”

They both lay back, thinking of the new house.

“Mikael? I knew you bought the puppy. Your mom told me.” Tatiana giggled.

Mikael burst out laughing. “Forget what I said earlier. If my Mom moved in, I’d be the one in trouble. The two of you might gang up on me.”

“I might have already hinted something about the house to her.”

Now Mikael had a full-bellied laugh. He was laughing so hard that Tatiana fell out of the hammock.

“Hey!” She complained, looking up at him with a pouting lip.

Mikael rolled out of the hammock and pulled her to her feet.

“Let’s dance.”

“But there’s no music.”

“The music is in here.” Mikael put her hand over his heart. “Do you hear it?”

Tatiana melted into his arms and they swayed to the music in Mikael’s heart.


Buy link: books2read.com/DeathMostWicked

Trailer link: bit.ly/2dhsfXP

Web site: www.SuziAlbracht.com

Twitter and Instagram Handles: @SuziAlbracht

Dear Suzi, thank you so much for showing us the gentle side of your character. And yes, I do get why you like him.



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Meet Lily Luchesi

It is my pleasure today to interview one of the rising young authors. Vampire fans will love it. Meet Lily Luchesi!

Bio:

Lily Luchesi is a young author/poet born in Chicago, Illinois, now residing in Los Angeles, California. Ever since she was a toddler her mother noticed her tendency for being interested in all things “dark”. At two she became infatuated with vampires and ghosts, and that infatuation turned into a lifestyle by the time she was twelve, and, as her family has always been what they now call “Gothic”, she doesn’t believe she shall ever change. She is also a hopeless romantic and avid music-love who will always associate vampires with love, blood, and rock and roll.

Her debut novel, Stake-Out (Paranormal Detectives Series Book One), was published by Vamptasy Publishing on May 19th, 2015. Book two, Miranda’s Rights, was released on January 8th, 2016. Book three, Life Sentence, was released on August 2nd, 2016 by Vamptasy Publishing, and book four, Right To Silence, was also just accepted by the publisher and will be released January 17th, 2017.

She has a short stories featured in the anthologies Naughty Bedtime Stories: In Three Words, Death Love Lust, and Lurking In The Shadows.


Links:

http://lilyluchesibooks.wix.com/lilyluchesi

http://amazon.com/author/lilyluchesi

http://facebook.com/lilyluchesi

http://instagram.com/lilyluchesi

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7369101.Lily_Luchesi

Interview:

1. Who are you in a nutshell? 

I’m a writer, a vampire lover, insomniac who loves rock music, black clothes, the CW, and anime.

2. Why do you write? 

I am the author of the Paranormal Detectives Series, which follows a mortal detective as he discovers the “Underworld of Chicago”: vampires, witches, demons, and much more. He teams up with the FBI’s secret Paranormal Investigative Division and its leader, Angelica Cross, to stop various unearthly threats.

I am also the writer of various short stories, both horror and erotica.

3. What’s your latest project? 

My latest project is Life Sentence, the third book in the PDSeries, which picks up right when its predecessor (Miranda’s Rights) ends, with Angelica needing to adjust to a new kind of life and the demonic witch Fiona Guilfoyle is hunting her down, threatening a Wiccan takeover over all mortals and creatures alike.

4. What is your favourite character among the ones you created? 

Angelica, for sure. I love her because when I created her, I had no idea who she was aside from her parentage and species. As the series has gone on, I am discovering new things about her. She is a constant surprise.

5. What was the most difficult thing for you to write so far? 

In book four, Right To Silence (coming January 17th, 2017), one of my characters is a kidnap/torture victim, and I had to write a flashback scene that triggers an anxiety attack. As a sufferer of PTSD, that scene was very hard to write and I had to stop multiple times.

6. How do you deal with criticism, promotional activities, editing/proofreading? 

I don’t mind criticism as long as it’s constructive. If it’s trolling, then I block and move on. I promote at least two hours every few days on Facebook groups and pages, plus I utilize author takeovers, newsletters, and email blast sites to promote my books. My publisher (Vamptasy) has an editor whom I have worked with on the majority of my books, Elizabeth Anne Lance. I love working with her and my other editor, Catherine Stovall. Both are amazing ladies and really enhance my work.

7. What are your writing plans for the future? 

I will have my fourth book out, as mentioned above, in January, and the fifth sometime this summer. I also have a paranormal femdom erotic short with my publisher, to see if she wants to publish it, and various shorts releasing soon, including the Gems Of Gratitude anthology, which is releasing on November 14th.

8. Which books/authors do you admire and why? 

I really love Stephen King because he is so much more than a horror writer. He writes about people, the characters are so real you fall right into their stories. As a reader, I respect him so much, and as a writer, his book On Writing really gave me some great advice and perspective.

9. What makes you happiest in the writing process? 

When I manage to surprise myself. With the fifth PDS book, I wrote a twist that had me sitting at my laptop in shock. Those moments where it’s as if I’m not the one writing, those are what I live for.

10. What do people usually say about your writing? 

I have been so blessed with reviewers loving my books. I think what I get the most frequently is how much they love Angelica because she’s not a typical female lead in any genre. While she looks like the typical vampire assassin you see in every other paranormal book out there, she doesn’t act like one, and when readers see that and compliment me on it, it makes my whole day!

11. If you didn’t write, would you try any other arts or crafts? 

I am actually already trying my hand at graphic design, but otherwise no. I’d probably be a psychologist.

12. What was your favourite book when you were younger or a child? Why? 

I had a few, but my top two were Darren Shan’s Trials of Death and Ellen Schreiber’s Royal Blood. I still love both authors today.

13. If you could sit down for a chat with any famous author or character, who would it be and what would you talk about? 

Stephen King. I’d talk with him about so much, from dogs to monsters to baseball. Honestly, to have a conversation with him would make me die happy!

14. Pick one of your books and explain it to us as if it were a movie, listing the cast and crew if you wish. 

(Using Stake-Out, the first Paranormal Detectives book)

Set in the windy, dark city of Chicago, we follow protagonist Danny Mancini (played by Louis Ferreira) into the night as he hunts a murder suspect in the volatile South Side one day in rainy June. Instead of a psychopath, he spots a dark-haired, fanged individual (played by Richard Armitage) who is savagely tearing out the throat of a young woman in a dirty, smelly alleyway. When his bullets do nothing to stop the monster, Danny faints, only to come to and have his world torn apart.

Two years later, he is met by the beautiful Angelica Cross (played by Hayley Atwell), who takes him under her wing and into a world of blood, darkness, and reincarnation.

15. Do you have any special promos, charity releases, appearances or book releases you’d like to tell us about?

Yes, as mentioned I am in the Gems of Gratitude anthology, which will be releasing on November 14th, and you can pre-order it now wherever books are sold. And then enter a great giveaway with your purchase code on Facebook! https://www.facebook.com/events/1349241698441884/

Sneak Peek:

Take a peek inside of my latest release, Life Sentence!
His sharp fangs barely nipped her neck, just getting a taste so as not to alarm her. Definitely not a real bite by any means.

She dug her nails into his back, tearing the fabric of his leather vest. Vampire bites could be an intoxicating sexual high if used properly, and even she was not immune to the effect, because of her human blood. It was that human blood that made what was supposed to be a simple execution turn into a bloody brawl. Theo had obviously tasted the humanity in her bloodstream and he wrenched himself away from her, her blood staining his chin and falling in tiny rivulets down her neck.

“You’re a fxxxing halfling?” he practically spat. “I didn’t even know your kind really existed. Why did you tell me you were a real vamp?”

“I am a real vampire,” she said, wiping her blood off her neck.

“No, you’re a freak of nature. Your kind should never have existed,” he said. “What do you say I change that?” He lunged for her, but she dodged out of the way, and his hand crashed into the brick wall, cracking the brick. He went after her again, and this time his nails cut into her face, but she immediately healed.

She pulled a blade from her oversized bag and took a swing with it, cutting into his muscular shoulder. The holy water made the wound fester and burn as Theo cried out in pain.

“You psycho, what are you carrying weapons around for?” he asked stupidly. 

Angelica rolled her eyes. “For deviants like you.” She held the knife in an offensive position and knew she needed to declare herself. Dropping the accent she said, “Detective Angelica Cross, Paranormal Investigative Division. I’m real, Theo, and I’ll easily cut your throat unless you stand down now. Let me take you in for questioning and no one will get hurt.” An utter lie, of course, but she needed information from him before she killed him.

“This is the great Cross?” Theo started to laugh maniacally. “A half breed brat who doesn’t look a day older than twenty?”

“I’m one-ninety-eight, thank you,” she replied, taking her gun swiftly in her other hand and shooting at him.

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Have a scare;)

​Some of my stories even scare myself. ‘Beneath’ twists rightful revenge into eerie battle. Mother&daughter at their worst.

So many great authors in Crooked Tales – amazed to be included.

#shortstory

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Crooked is sometimes great

One of my favourite anthologies is Crooked Tales. I was invited to participate with a short story on revenge and deceit, and I honestly thought I’d have nothing to give. Lucky for me, sometimes it only takes an image to inspire a story, and two fellow writer/editors to help iron out the rough edges and voila – “Beneath” is one of my short stories I am really proud of. 

Thank you, Mark Fine and Geoff Nelder, for the ironing bits which have mde all the difference. Even Goodreads readers have noticed it.

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When a review makes you gulp:)

Getting a review like this, in such fine company as this, from an author I really admire is just… well, no pressure at all, right;)? But it only inspires me to write more and better! Wow!

Read short stories! They are gems.

More “Crooked Tales” – http://wp.me/p4h9JT-2iN

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Step over THE THRESHOLD with a video

Honoured to be featured in the book trailers section of Plaisted Publishing House!

image

The Threshold is a paranormal novella with elements of horror, apparently. Well, so the reviews say. A small book with a big punch! I hope so. It came to me during a bedtime read, and was written and dreamt within a week. To me, it’s like a timeless urban legend about the curse of vanity in any form, with a myriad of characters, and a set of elegant villains who get… Ha-ha, better read it for yourself! It’s a short read, and takes about 2-3 hours to go through.
Daring you to try, grateful for reviews!

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The Threshold e-book availability:
Lulu
Amazon
Goodreads
iTunes
Barnes&Noble
Kobo

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