Wednesday, September 14, 2016
Casey’s Top Ten List of Odds & Ends!
Hey everyone! Thank you to The Creatively Green Write at Home Mom for hosting me today.
I’ve been asked to compile a top ten list for your reading pleasure. No pressure, right?
Instead of telling you my top ten movies or books because – I can never decide and there are just too many choices, so please don’t make me – I came up with something a bit different.
There is no rhyme or reason to the information below. It’s just for fun. And, yes, I did include a shameless plug for my novel – Dead Girls Don’t Cry.
Casey’s Top Ten List of Odds and Ends!
1. Balled up newspaper works great for drying out the inside of drenched sneakers. Next time you get your sneaks soaking wet, try it. If they are super soaked, you will need to periodically pull out the wet paper and replace it with dry, but it will get the wetness out faster than air drying or using the dryer. Credit for this tip goes to the Boy Scouts!
2. Vampires don’t actually live on Mars. But if you’d like to believe they could, then look no further than Dead Girls Don’t Cry. Cherry Cordial, a vampire stripper, finds herself falsely accused of murder and has to flee for her undead life where she joins a colony on Mars comprised of other undead races. Also, Google Mars is a real thing, check it at: www.google.com/mars/
3. When smelling scented candles, sniff the lid, not the actual candle. By doing this you will get a better idea of what the candle will smell like and how strong the scent will be when it's lit. Yes, I have a loads of practice candle sniffing at the Yankee Candle Flagship Store (in Deerfield, MA) and at various malls. And speaking of Yankee Candle, my new favorite scent is Maple Sugar (exclusively found at the flagship store)!
4. According to my bestest buddy Lisa - food has no calories when you are standing up. Or if you are at a party. Or if it's your birthday. Did I miss any? I'm pretty sure that is a load of crap, but it's fun to believe while snacking. Also, walking around with your phone playing Pokemon Go! totally counts as exercise.
5. I have never left the continent of North America. I tell my hubby that I must travel to places, like Australia, to prove to myself that other parts of the world are real. I know that they actually exist but I'm just hoping he will buy my rationale. Some day. Someday soon, I will explore other places. Does anyone else feel that way?
6. Movie theater chains make their money from the concession stand and not the actual films. This is why a bottle of water costs $4.00 and popcorn $7.00 (although our local chain gives free re-fills on the large size, probably because popcorn is dirt cheap to make). I only know this because I worked in a movie theater, where I met hubby.
7. When making grilled cheese, instead of buttering the bread, melt the butter in the pan. This will give it that crunchy, buttery sheen like you get when you eat grilled cheese in a restaurant. What? You’ve never ordered grilled cheese . . . okay then.
8. Owning six cats does not make someone a crazy cat lady. How do I know that? Because I have six cats and madness hasn’t set in yet. And because I’m married with two sons. We just happened to have adopted and/or rescued six cats from shelters and/or my porch step. Nope. Not crazy. Not yet.
9. T.S. Elliot called April the cruelest month. Need proof?
· April 4, 1968 - assassination of Martin Luther King Jr.
· April 12, 1861 - Start of US Civil War
· April 14, 1865 - the assassination of Abraham Lincoln (he died early morning on the 15th)
· April 15, 1912 - sinking of RMS Titanic
· April 15th - in the United States - Tax day
· April 18, 1906 - San Francisco earthquake
· April 19, 1775 - the shot heard 'round the world. Battle of Lexington & Concord starts the American Revolution. Okay, that was pretty good for us Americans.
· April 26, 1986 - Chernobyl disaster
· April 27, 1865, SS Sultana (riverboat) boiler explodes. Still considered to be the greatest maritime disaster in US history.
Also in April of years past - Columbine shootings, Oklahoma bombing, Waco, Virginia Tech shootings, BP oil spill, and Apollo 13. There were so many disasters, I had difficulty choosing what to include. Kinda scary, definitely tragic.
10. January 4th is National Trivia Day. Mental Floss Magazine has this holiday well-covered. If you go to mentalfloss.com, you can learn all kinds of cool things like Oscar the Grouch was originally orange and that Google’s original name was “backrub.” Yup, you read that correctly.
Let’s make this list even longer. What other fun or helpful hints can you share? Remember, no pressure.
Dead Girls Don’t Cry
The Undead Space Initiative
Genre: Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance
Date of Publication: August 18, 2016
Number of pages: 410
Word Count: 83,000
Cover Artist: Kim Killion, Inc.
Cherry Cordial, vampire stripper extraordinaire, spectacularly messes up her life with a single act of kindness. How could she have known when she rescued gorgeous rogue Ian McDevitt that she would be implicated in the vampire queen’s murder?
Soon, she faces the wrath of the entire vampire community. To escape retribution, she joins a settlement program to colonize Mars. Her choices are grim: hurtle through space to the red planet to face the unknown and possible death, or stay on Earth and face certain annihilation.
To make things even more complicated, a certain gorgeous rogue seems to be shadowing her every move...
Suddenly, I wasn’t the biggest, baddest thing on the block.
They always traveled in packs. Enough of them could take me down. Revenants were cousins to vampires, undead beings with too much spirit. Essentially ghosts with physical reality.
I picked up the pace, steering toward the middle of the street and well away from dark corners. If I had a heart rate, it would have been pounding. My blood was rare and prized. One sip and the revenants would keep me alive to serve as a drink dispenser.
I fished through my bag. Where was my cell? Jonathan would come. Provided I could find the damn phone.
Meaty thwacks rang out in the alley as I passed by.
Do not look.
A soft oomph, followed by a clipped English accent, “Try that again, bastards.”
A lone and gorgeous male vampire had been captured. Three revenants had him pinned against the wall. Two held his arms and one pinned his legs. Three more surrounded him like a pack of knife-wielding hyenas.
The vampire snarled. Long fangs bared, presumably pissed off at his capture. With his sculptured physique, he could handle the situation. Right?
None of the baddies had noticed me yet. I could leave.
Another punch landed, connecting with the vamp’s mouth. The crack echoed in the alley. Liquid splattered, followed by cruel laughter.
The vampire hottie spat, his lip broken. Blood trickled down his jaw, seeping into the stark white collar of his button down shirt. “Think twice before you cut me, mate. I’ll smash all of your fucking heads in.”
“Shut up, meat.”
One added, “I’m so scared,” before swinging his knife and tearing a gash in the vampire’s chest. The pack laughed. A revenant approached the vampire with IV bags.
Crap-a-roni, now I had to get involved. They planned to bleed him out. That’s what revenants did. They took a vampire’s blood and drained him or her dry. The blood was then sold to the highest revenant bidder. They believed our blood could remove the excess spirit from their bodies, returning them to their true vampire form.
Problem is—it’s a myth. There’s no way for a revenant to become a vampire, any more than I could become a zebra if I wanted to. These guys were zealots. Deranged lunatics.
“This is your last warning, blokes,” Mr. Sexy English accent said. I tried not to shiver at the sound of his rich voice. Heady whiffs of his sweet scented blood drifted my way. Like a fine wine, the smell promised a delicious and satisfying taste. Saliva pooled in my mouth. My fangs dug into my bottom lip.
“Well lookee here!”
Damn. I should have run when I had the chance. The pack turned in my direction, their faces eager for more blood. I cringed under the gaze of the hollow-eyed, pale-skinned nightmares who all wanted a piece of me.
The nearest one licked his gray, rubbery lips. “Yum. Dessert.”
I was too stupid to live. Why didn’t I run? My feet were frozen to the spot. I did the lamest, girliest thing possible. I swung my purse. And connected. A solid hit to the nuts.
The revenant shrieked, clutching his junk. “Bitch!”
The male vampire bucked, tossing the revenant off his left arm. Partially free, he ripped the arm off the other revenant before the thing could even react. With balled fists, Mr. Hottie crushed the skull of the captor holding his feet.
“Don’t stand there like a daft pony!” the vampire scolded. He snapped the neck of the nearest revenant, then motioned. “Get out of my way!”
“What? Without my help, you’d still be trapped against a wall!” I ducked and stepped aside, narrowly avoiding the gray-lipped revenant who had thought I was dessert.
“The rubbish bin would be more help than you!” Mr. English silenced two more revenants with brutal, neck-twisting efficiency.
“Oh really?” What a prick.
The revenant recovered from the nut bash and charged me again. His fingertips knocked off my ball cap. I kicked him in the stomach, grabbed the garbage barrel and slammed it over the revenant’s head as he honed in on me. The plastic bin wouldn’t kill the thing, but he couldn’t see either.
“Pathetic,” the vampire said.
Mr. English and I watched as the last revenant bounced against a brick wall before falling over, his legs scissoring.
“Time for this one to bugger off as well.” Mr. English yanked off the barrel and snuffed out the revenant with a bone-shattering blow to its head.
One by one the corpses disintegrated into dusty husks. A breeze blew through the alley and scattered the remains. Gray vaporous clouds floated around before dissipating into the air. To a passerby, the revenants’ final passage would look like dirty car exhaust.
“Well, I’m off then. Have good evening.” He brushed dirt off his tailored trousers. “Sod it, they scuffed my shoes. And this shirt is ruined.”
“Yeah. What a tragedy. You’re lucky. You could have been a revenant Slurpee.”
He sniffed at the suggestion. “I was never in any real danger.”
“You could have fooled me,” I retrieved my ball cap from the grimy sidewalk.
A late afternoon sunbeam penetrated the alley, illuminating the vampire’s blue-green eyes and highlighting the fine bone structure of his face. I tried not to gawk.
I gathered my tangled hair and mashed it under the hat. “Looks to me like they had you pinned against the ropes.” Did I mention he was gorgeous? Like a cover model. An underwear cover model. I cleared my throat. He was a total stranger, and while I bet he looked divine in only underwear, I needed to stop ogling him.
When he stared at me and didn’t reply, I lamely added, “You know? Down for the count.”
“I understood the reference, luv,” he said in his damn fine accent.
A man-shaped shadow shifted from across the street, forming a dark blot in the alley’s entrance. We weren’t alone.
About the Author:
Casey Wyatt grew up in a mid-size Connecticut town where nothing exciting ever happened. To stem the boredom, she spent plenty of time reading fantasy and sci-fi novels and imagining her own adventures in her head. Not much has changed since she’s grown up, only now she shares those made up stories with her readers and earns a coin or two.