If you are looking for the most recent episodes of “A Cold Spring,” they are waiting for you at Sorchia’s Universe. If you have just discovered the story and don’t want to wander the Interwebs to find each episode, I’ve put a link to a PDF of previous episodes there too.
Today, I want to talk about something else here at Paranormal Romantics.
As any writer knows, when you write a story you wind up with a lot of slush that doesn’t make it into the final version. Just because it’s slush, doesn’t mean it’s useless. No—a great deal of backstory has to be written before you get to know your characters and sometimes their history captures your imagination.
That’s what happened to me. When I started writing about Zoraida Grey, I intended she be the main character in a series of ghost-hunting mysteries. Now, it’s no secret I use Tarot cards as inspiration pieces, so I started pulling cards for Zoraida. Pretty quickly, I found an entirely different tale—and that’s where the Zoraida Grey trilogy was born.
But I had all these ideas for ghost hunting mysteries. As I wrote the trilogy, tantalizing segments from the backstories of several characters came along, too. I worked as much as I could into the trilogy—avoiding mountainous paragraphs of description at all times—but I still had stories to tell. So I condensed some of them into short stories and put them together into a collection.
Witchling: A Collection of Zoraida Grey Short Stories goes on sale on February 14. Yep—that’s a day usually reserved for lovers. Witchling: A Collection is for anyone who either doesn’t have somebody to love or has had enough of hearts and sentiment and craves ghosts and murder instead.
Stories in the collection:
“Zoraida Grey and the Skinwalker”
“Zoraida Grey and the Twisted Sisters”
“Zoraida Grey and the Surly Spirit”
“The Witch and the Spaniard”
Here’s a little taste from “Zoraida Grey and the Skinwalker”—a nostalgic story about Zoraida as a little girl.
An owl hoots a loud Hoo Hooowaaaa just above my head. With a silky whoosh, downy wings brush my shoulder. The owl is gone before I can level my flashlight beam to catch a glimpse. If I were a mouse, I’d be owl chow right now.
The clack of gravel spins me around. I play the weak beam across the undergrowth and back down the road. Nothing. Imagination. I shake it off. The weather must be making me jumpy.
I like storms, as a rule, but tonight the mutter of thunder sounds like growls. Maybe it’s a good thing Al didn’t come walking with me if I’m going to flinch every time a cricket chirps. This isn’t the way an all-powerful sorceress should act at all.
What I ought to be doing is chasing down the source of this odd oily feeling I have. It tastes like bitter cherries and it smells like roadkill. My tummy gives a toss the way it does when I have to read aloud in class. The shaft of light from my flashlight weakens as the battery runs down.
Just as I pull the handle out to recharge it, a dark shadow in the bushes moves onto the road. Two eyes gleam in the anemic light. Not my imagination at all. Neither is the low snarl.
The useless flashlight drops from my numb hand, clatters on the rocky road, and goes completely out. I don’t waste time retrieving it. I am a quarter mile closer to home before it stops rolling.
If I were a cartoon character, flames would line the hot trail I leave behind. The running treads of a pursuer grow closer with each step. Fear pulls air from my lungs. I am afraid to look back. Afraid not to look back.
The rasp of its breath, clear and close, shifts my legs into another gear. For the first time in my life, I’m glad I have these long, gawky legs. I risk a glance back. The dark pursuing shadow is yards behind, but gaining. Whatever chases me has long legs too. I’m not going to beat it in a sprint, anyhow. Panic squirms like a maggot in my belly, but there’s always a way. I still have a good lead.
Preorders for Witchling: A Collection are available at selected spots—Unfortunately, Amazon isn’t one of them at this time. Here’s the universal link to preorder a copy of this lively collection where it is available. New distributors will be added along the way and on February 14, Witchling: A Collection will should be available everywhere.