I Just Keep Disappearing

I know I don’t post on here regularly, like, at all. I’ve not posted in over a year. I started a podcast last years, and I have kept up a website for it. Granted I just put in what I say in the podcast. However, the podcast, not even a year old, was put on the back burner because life got in the way.

I’ve realized when I start feeling anxious and like I don’t have control in my life, I start doing a lot of stuff. I start focusing on things other than what I should be focusing on because (like most people) I don’t know how to deal with my own problems. Towards the beginning of the year, I got real run down. I realized the podcast should be put to the side because, while fun, wasn’t something that I could see myself doing long-term, at least not right now.

I love talking about haunted places and murderers. Those subjects intrigue me, but it’s back to just talking about it with my family when the occasion arises. However, in giving up the podcast, I picked up something new, a family on TikTok.

Yes, you read that right, I am on TikTok. If you are on there, you can find me @feliciahuffman4. Thanks to an amazing person on there called @geezahgobble who created the character of Gladys in the Department for Lost Souls, and entire community had been created within the DLS. A competition was held back in July for people to play characters in the DLS. I did not win the competition, but it inspired me to create the character of Piper, a secretary of sorts for purgatory. Through this I met other creators, and we’ve made our own accepting family of demons, gods, goddesses, and people who work in the afterlife.

Now, you may be asking how is giving up a podcast and starting a character on TikTok not a lateral move. Honestly, I don’t know. It may be, but it’s easier for me to do skits with Piper and keep up with it, than it was when I was doing the podcast. I find more joy in playing Piper.

I also got my Etsy store going and have actually made a couple of sells. It ain’t much, but I’m just happy I’m getting some interest on what I have.

Now, onto my book. It seems as though Changing Tides is taking me forever to write just like Loved by Death. But have no fear, as I sit here typing this, I plan on writing some on Changing Tides momentarily. It seems my creativity in creating Piper has sparked a need to write on my book again. Let’s just hope I don’t decide to scrap what I’ve got and start again. (I don’t see that happening)

I’d say I’m around halfway through, and I would hope that I get a complete rough draft finished by the end of the year, if not sooner.

Anyway, that’s my update. It’s not an in depth look at the shit I have gone through in 2021 alone, but this isn’t the place to share all of that. I can’t say whether or not I will be posting on here regularly again, but I’ll try to post something at least once a month just so that you guys know I am still alive.

Where Has She Been?

You may be wondering, where did she go? And for good reason.

I haven’t written a blog post since last November, but I have been busy working on a new project. I have been working on the second book in the Wolfsbane Chronicles, but I have something new that I am working on.

I’m working on creating a podcast. My podcast won’t have to do with writing. Instead, I am going to be exploring another interest of mine, murder, mystery, and ghosts. I had started doing a weekly haunting story on this blog, but as you have seen, those stopped as well.

I’m going to be transitioning my ghost stories and such to a different blog, just to keep things more organized. You can still come here to find updates about my books as well as some updates about book releases. I should have a blog coming out at least once a month here, maybe more. It will all depend on book news.

Once I have my new blog up and running, and the podcast, I will share more information about it. I am still in the planning phase. I haven’t even come up with a name for the podcast yet. I would also like to have some guests that like talking about ghosts and murder, but I will have to do some research on where to find them.

Just be on the lookout for more information. Until then, keep reading.

The Stanley Hotel – Colorado

In true Friday the 13th fashion, we have a haunted hotel story. This hotel was the inspiration for Stephen King’s novel The Shining, and you can still stay there today.

The Stanley Hotel has a long history. It saw the likes of Harry Houdini and many other greats of the time. Freelan Oscar Stanley has the house built, unveiling the 100-room East Coast Colonial-style house in 1909. He and his wife had fallen in love with Estes Park after the moved there on the advice of Freelan’s doctor. It helped Freelan’s tuberculosis, and he lived longer than had been expected.

Eventually, the house changed hands in the 1930s when Freelan sold it to a corporation who transformed it into a hotel. It didn’t fair well because the nearby national park was still growing. John Cullen bought the hotel, and thanks to Stephen King, was able to turn it into a success. King had visited the hotel in 1974, and it became the backdrop for his book “The Shining.” The pet cemetery that was onsite also inspired King. King wanted to invest in a cinematic do-over using the Stanley Hotel. Cullen agreed to this, and trucks were brought in loaded with the McGregor ballroom stage, furniture, and wallpaper that is still there to this day. So that brings us to the question, is the Stanley Hotel really haunted?

The guests of the hotel think so. In 1911, there was an explosion in room 217 that sent Elizabeth Wilson, a chambermaid, through the floor and broke both of her ankles. She somehow survived, but people believe she haunts the hotel.

Stephen King even believes he experienced something otherworldly at the hotel. He said:

“I dreamt of my three-year-old son running through the corridors, looking back over his shoulder, eyes wide, screaming. He was being chased by a fire-hose. I woke up with a tremendous jerk, sweating all over, within an inch of falling out of bed. I got up, lit a cigarette, sat in the chair looking out the window at the Rockies, and by the time the cigarette was done, I had the bones of the book firmly set in my mind.”

The staff won’t explicitly state if they believe the hotel is haunted, instead, they leave it up to guests to draw their own conclusion. They don’t try to hide from their reputation either. They have daily “ghost tours” and offer special bookings for rooms 401, 407, 428, and 217. They even have a resident psychic.

If you are interested in experiencing this hotel for yourself, make sure you book well in advance, especially if you want one of the rooms listed above.

On This Day… September 8

Let’s take a look at some writing-related historical events.

  • 1830 Frederic Mistral is born
  • 1873 Alfred Jarry is born
  • 1930 First appearance of comic strip “Blondie”
  • 1933 Michael Frayn is born
  • 1947 Ann Beattie is born
  • 1948 Thomas Mofolo dies
  • 1960 Penguin Books in Britain is charged with obscenity for trying to publish the D.H. Lawrence novel Lady Chatterley’s Lover
  • 1999 Harry Potter and the Prison of Azkaban  is published in the US

FYI:

Make sure you grab your copy of Loved by Death here. I am going to make it available, soon, on other sites as well.

Marked – My Thoughts

I haven’t done a “book review” in a while. I put that in quotes because I don’t consider it a review. I don’t really go through the good and the bad of books that much. I simply share some thoughts about books. I don’t consider myself a book reviewer, but if you are an author and have self-published some books, reach out to me because I am willing to help other Indie authors. I know how hard it can be to get reviews.

Alright, Marked is the first book in the Hous of Night series by PC and Kristin Cast. I started reading these in high school when a friend of mine let me borrow her copy. She was also the one that told me I should read it considering my other literary interests (Twilight).

Unfortunately, I only get to the third or fourth book when I couldn’t go any further. See, my friend had lent the books to another student as well, but that student had one of the books and then moved to Las Vegas taking the book with her. So, 10+ years later, I mentioned these books to my mom and she started giving them to me for Christmas. (I love my mom, for she enables my book addiction.)

*SPOILERS ARE BELOW*

The House of Night series gives a new take on the world of vampires. A young woman, Zoey Redbird, is marked with a crescent moon on her forehead, which immediately causes her to become an outcast amongst her family and friends. She has to get to the school, otherwise, she will die, but her step-father and mother want to pray the vampire away.

She escapes and goes to her grandmothers, and long story short winds up at the House of Nigh school with a gash in her head and her mark already colored in. This makes her stand out amongst her new classmates.

This entire book takes place over just a few days, the days leading up to Samhain. She easily makes friends with what would probably be considered the outcast group, but she also, sort of, forced into joining the dark daughters.

Of course, any good book has to have an antagonist, and that would be the leader of the dark daughters, Aphrodite, or as Zoey’s group of friends so lovingly call her, “Hag from Hell.”

The Zoey is determined to fix the problems within the school because Nyx has chosen her. She also wants to knock Aphrodite down a peg, which does accomplish, to an extent, by the end of the book. There are plenty of other problems that she will have to face, I’m sure, but she is off to a great start.

I’ve read a few reviews on this book, it has a four-star rating on Goodreads, but some of the most negative ones talk about the way the book is written. People seem to have a problem that the style of the book is very informal. There are “asides,” colloquialisms, and slang throughout the book. I suppose, for some, that might be a problem, but that’s part of the reason why I love the book so much.

I can’t speak for other authors, but I like writing because I can break the rules. I like to take liberties that some people may find as wrong, but there is nobody saying that you can’t. That’s what draws me into the writing of the Cast’s. It is very easy to get lost in their book, at least for me. The books are meant to be young adult, and I think that writing plays very well into that genre.

Anywho, I think you should give it a read. I will be doing one of these for each of the books. But FYI, the book I am currently reading is Psycho, so that will be the next “My Thoughts” post.

“You know how it is with cats: They don’t really have owners, they have staff.”
― P.C. Cast, Chosen

FYI:

Make sure you grab your copy of Loved by Death here. I am going to make it available, soon, on other sites as well.