Owl Manor – The Dawning, coming in the fall of 2018!!

final cover copy

The hand of fate is ever present. We would believe we are in complete control, spend our lives trying to exercise that control, but sometimes the tide sweeps us in directions beyond the imagination. And we have no choice but to swim towards the unforeseen thing that awaits us, and to wonder if it was meant to be.

This is the story of Eva. Stifled by the ignorant attitudes towards women in Colonial America, unable to reach her full potential, Eva lives a life of dissatisfaction and frustration. Fate leads her to the Rocky Mountains in 1859, and the shadow that lurks in the dark halls of Owl Manor, where she finds unforeseen fulfillment.

WRITER, BOOK COVER DESIGNER

Hello and welcome!

me with art copy

I am a writer of suspenseful romance, a blogger, and a book cover designer. All my life I have been passionate about both Writing and Art and am now happily writing and creating Art in the form of Graphic Design as well as personal Art.

BOOKS: My first novel, Ink – Beneath the Stain, came out in July 2016, and I am currently working on my second novel, Owl Manor, the Dawning, a supernatural romance full of suspense. You can read more about these books on my BOOKS page.

BLOGS: I like to write about anything inspiring related to Art: books, movies, musicians, paintings, sculpture, etc. You can find these at BLOGS, ETC.

BOOK COVER DESIGNS: With over twenty years of Graphic Design experience, I designed the covers for my own books. Then I decided I wanted to do more, and put together some mockups to display my design skills. Below are a few samples, and you can check out my BOOK COVER DESIGNS page for more designs, BOTH FICTION AND NON-FICTION, and special offers!

OTHER DESIGNS: My OTHER DESIGNS page has samples of work I did as a Graphic Designer for various firms as well as my own personal artwork.

Feel free to leave comments. I would love to hear from you!!

Another excerpt from Owl Manor – The Dawning. Coming soon!

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“After a while, I came to a clearing and stopped to catch my breath. Here, no light from the moon penetrated the canopy of trees, and the darkness was thick, throbbing, the stillness complete. I could hear my heart, the far away rhythm of a primal drumbeat, and my breath, like the rushing sound of water…flowing, receding. As my eyes slowly adjusted, shapes materialized out of the blackness. The silhouettes of stately conifers, silent guardians of nature; smaller mounds of underbrush, a fallen tree trunk. And scattered over it all, streaks and spots of snow, like an outcrop of white mushrooms. Something scurried across the ground, and I squealed, heart pounding, body tingling with heightened awareness. Then I laughed softly. It was just a small animal, maybe a mouse. And I slowly became aware of other sounds: low hooting, hissing, snapping, rustling…the forest spoke, swelling and pulsing with life. I closed my eyes and listened. And felt as though I were melting into something vast and endless. What on earth was happening to me? I felt fanciful, starry-eyed, like the sort of female I had always looked down upon. Under some sort of spell. The spell of Owl Manor, a place where reason fled in the wake of delirium.

Then an icy breeze touched my cheeks.”

Language of the Soul

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Anybody who has been deeply touched by music will attest to the fact that it is the language of the soul. It gives voice to our emotions and makes us see what a privilege it is to feel, which is what makes us human. Relevant to every age, every culture, whether you’re in a sad place, happy, or angry place, music will touch on those feelings and play them out.

The music that has been doing this for me for a long time is that of Mr. Peter Gabriel. His prophetic voice, his endless vision and creativity, his ability to get to the core of life. His songs made me cry when I was an adolescent, and they make me cry now. His lyrics and sounds carry the joys and pains of our existence, and appeal to our primal instincts, the raw emotion that we all try to deny for it might drive us mad.

But sometimes madness makes you feel, and that’s part of us, right?

Those who think “Sledgehammer” or “Big Time” when they think Peter Gabriel…there’s so much more: “Rhythm of the Heat”, “Mercy Street”, “That Voice again”, “Here comes the flood”…I don’t know where to stop. These are the ones that reach deep into your soul and consume you, take you on a journey in which your emotions are wrung out and leave you feeling drained…and cleansed. It’s therapeutic.

Here are the lyrics from one of my all time favorites, “That Voice Again”. I took out the refrains. And below the lyrics is the song on Youtube. Watch for the part where he sings “Only love can make love”….aaaahhhhh, thank you Maestro. You are a constant inspiration to me.

I want to be with you
I want to be clear
But each time I try
It’s the voice I hear
I hear that voice again

I’m listening to the conversation:
Judge and jury in my head
It’s coloring everything
All we did and said
And still I head that sharp tongue talking
Talking tangled words
I can sense the danger
Just listen to the wind

I want you close I want you near
I can’t help but listen
But I don’t want to hear
Hear that voice again…….

I’m hearing right and wrong so clearly
There must be more than this
It’s only in uncertainty
That we’re naked and alive
I hear it through the rattle of a streetcar
Hear it through the things you said
I can get so scared
Listen to the wind…….

What I carry in my heart
Brings us so close or so far apart
Only love can make love

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RHjmwq3NbE4https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RHjmwq3NbE4

Does anyone have a musician they have been deeply touched by and would like to share?

 

 

Dreamsphere II: ANGRY BLASTS FROM THE BEYOND

dreamsphere IIThe world lit up with sudden flashes of blinding light, like angry blasts from the beyond. Big, fat raindrops erupted in torrents, pounding a savage, primordial beat that left the soul quaking and raw.

She jerked up in bed, shaken, confused, and reached out to turn on the fan, but realized the power had gone out. The air was heavy, sweltering. It was hard to breathe. The world lit up again and she dove under the sweat-drenched sheets, covering her ears with her hands to shut out the deafening cracks in the facade of the night, the glimpses of whirling, sucking horror that lay beneath. But when they came, her hands were no protection. They drilled through her head mercilessly, splitting, shattering. She tossed and turned under the covers, and finally fell into a turbulent sleep.

But there was no rest in sleep that night. She dreamed that someone lay next to her on the bed. He lay on his side, with his back to her. Something sprouted in the bottom of her gut like mold and worked its way up to her heart, clutching, squeezing. When he turned his head slowly to face her, his teeth jutted out of his mouth in a gruesome parody of a grin, and his soulless eyeballs shifted in bony eye sockets. She stared at him, telling herself that this was a dream, that it wasn’t real; it couldn’t be. It was the effect of the storm.

Suddenly she felt herself being seized by her nightgown in the back of her neck. And something sinister began throbbing in the room. Her skin crawling with fear, heart thudding painfully against her ribs, she felt herself being lifted up, up, off the bed, all the way to the ceiling. Now she was looking down at the thing on her bed, held up by the scruff like a defenseless kitten. The thing stared up at her, grinning the whole time, and the room continued oozing with something menacing, malevolent.

“What do you want from me?” she whispered, head and limbs dangling from the ceiling.

All of a sudden she plummeted to the bed with a force that knocked the wind out of her. She lay there for a few minutes, eyes closed, catching her breath, then opened her eyes and looked around tentatively for the thing lying next to her. It was gone.

Leaping out of bed, she ran to the window and threw it open. It was daylight. Somehow she had slept through the night. The sun was coming out, beaming warmth, reassurance. The air was pungent with the sweet aftermath of a cleansing rain. Shrubs and trees danced with new life, and the gentle, herby smell of chrysanthemums saturated the air.

She breathed deeply, filling every pore, every cell in her body with that smell and that warmth, and slowly exhaled.

WHAT IS A MONSTER?

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Is it just a figment of our imagination? I recently heard someone say the novel Frankenstein, by Mary Shelly, is just a “silly monster story”. Due to all the commercialization of “monsters”, like in “Addams Family”, super hero cartoons, etc., I can understand this.

But can anyone say they have never met a “monster,” silly or otherwise? Just look at some of the leaders of the world. “Silly” can be pretty scary.

Could it be possible that this stunning novel is dismissed as “silly” because at some level we can relate to it and it scares us? Maybe it brings out fears and anxieties that we would rather not face, even reminds us of thoughts we might have all had at one point or other in our lives that we might be ashamed of. Maybe it’s because sometimes “monsters” get to the heart of some of the most important issues of humankind.

All literature is drawn from life. As the master of modern day horror said: “Monsters are real, and ghosts are real too. They live inside us, and sometimes, they win.” – Stephen King.

In Frankenstein, Victor Frankenstein, scientist, builds a man out of body parts from different corpses. The result is not “silly” at all. It is grotesque, a wretched atrocity spawned by a demented mind. And then he runs away, leaving his mutant child to find its own way in the world, an act that forever condemns the thing to the realm of the unaccepted. After all, if a parent cannot accept the child he/she gave life to, why would the world? Hence, he creates the monster; physically by making him hideous to look at, and emotionally by his devastating rejection of him. Who is the monster here?

When Victor’s younger brother is murdered, he immediately assumes that the creature is responsible for it. A thing that ugly must surely be violent. As it turns out, he is right about who killed the boy, not because ugliness is bound to violence as he thinks, but because the creature, in his misery, wants revenge on his maker.

“I am malicious because I am miserable; am I not shunned and hated by all mankind?…You, my creator, would tear me to pieces and triumph; remember that, and tell me why I should pity man more than he pities me?…Shall I respect man, when he condemns me? Let him live with me in the interchange of kindness, and instead of injury, I would bestow every benefit upon him with tears of gratitude at his acceptance. But that cannot be; the human senses are insurmountable barriers to our union…I will revenge my injuries: if I cannot inspire love, I will cause fear. ”
― Mary Shelley, Frankenstein

When someone is treated with intolerance and hatred, the creature is saying, even by their own parent, they do not know how to be anything but hateful and angry themselves. How can they? Children learn how to love, respect, tolerate, be kind, and yes, hate, from their parents. How can a child who is mistreated learn how to do anything but mistreat? But deep down inside, we don’t need anyone to tell us what is wrong because we all have an innate sense of good and bad. “Let him live with me in the interchange of kindness, and instead of injury, I would bestow every benefit upon him with tears of gratitude at his acceptance,” the creature says. Even though he has known no kindness, he knows what it is. Babies respond to love with smiles and laughter the very first time they experience it because they are born with a sense of what feels good and what feels bad.

It’s a story of the dark ambition of man to conquer nature; of betrayal, agony, revenge, and the horrors that come from unbridled emotions, from forces that are unleashed when someone is denied love and acceptance. It’s a story of prejudice and ignorant assumptions about those who look different, which abounds in the world. People are judged for being too tall, too short, too fat, too thin, race, culture, gender, religion, sexual orientation and anything else out there. Because it makes those who are judging feel better about themselves and take less responsibility for their own problems. Maybe it’s impossible not to have ugly thoughts now and then. Maybe the best we can do is be mindful of them, and not act on them. If we want to, that is. 

Not only is Frankenstein not just a silly monster story, but it is a classic, which means its relevance will outlive us all.

Love to hear some thoughts!