Showing posts from May, 2018

Altered States of Carolina

Back in March of 2010 I woke up after a morning dream and quickly jotted these words down before they faded completely from my mind. This was written more than three years before we even thought to move south... to North Carolina.

"Driving west instead of east
two known strangers in the car
familiar as essences overlap
sharing one body with two souls

Reaching one destination
united with one who does not exist
and parted from one another
with a promised reunion in one
then two, then five days.

Traveling again in exhaustion
heading south instead of north
in a spring that overlaps an
autumn living in the mind.

One person not herself, divided
and conquered with one known
stranger in the car
seeking deliverance in the
altered states of Carolina."

It's All About the Characters

What's the most important thing to you about a book? For me, it's the characters. If the characters are interesting, and believable, I can forgive a lot of flaws with the plot. But if the characters don't grab me then the best plot in the world isn't going to hold my attention through a book.

But maybe that's just me.

I was a huge Stephen King fan when I was growing up. I cried when Larry and Glenn died in The Stand. I mean cried. I felt like I'd lost two of my best friends. There have been times when I've dreaded the end of books because I wouldn't be able to visit with certain characters anymore.

When I first started writing it was just on a whim. The internet was a very new thing back then - yeah, I know, I'm feeling old now, too. I had just gotten my first PC; an AT&T 6300. Wait, I king of lie, that was my first PC but it wasn't my first computer. My first computer was a Radio Shack TRS80. I had that when I was in high school and I took …

Don't Eat That!

Have you ever tried to imagine what the Garden of Eden must have been like?

Think about the most beautiful, most pristine piece of nature you've ever beheld. Maybe it was a trip to the mountains; the freshness of the air, the array colors in the fall, the sound of the birds in the trees and the peacefulness that just seeps into your soul. Or maybe you're more of a beach person; the tangy salt air, the cries of the gulls, the blue water and the sound of the waves crashing.

So, with that most beautiful image in your mind...realize that all the beauty you perceive is like someone with failing eyesight looking at something without their glasses on. The pure, unadulterated, unspoiled magnificence of what God created in the Garden can't even be imagined by you or I. Adam and Eve had absolutely everything they could ever even think to ask for. They had perfect bodies that were meant to go on for all time. They had no sickness, no hunger, no unfulfilled needs. There were glorious…

Possession - part four

Matthew 12: 43-46

“When an impure spirit comes out of a person, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it.Then it says, ‘I will return to the house I left.’ When it arrives, it finds the house unoccupied, swept clean and put in order.Then it goes and takes with it seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there. And the final condition of that person is worse than the first. That is how it will be with this wicked generation.”

Let's say you have a house guest. Let's say it's someone you meet who doesn't have a place to live and you let them come stay in your guest room for a couple of weeks; just until they get on their feet. We've all done that, right? And we all know what happens - the guest gets too comfortable there, makes a mess, meddles in your life, screws up your marriage, steals from you and eventually you get to the point where you have to throw them out. Maybe you tell them that you need the room for someone e…

Possession - part three

To be more clear, when speaking of possession in general and my friend Mary in particular - there can be periods, long periods even, when the person who's possessed might seem completely normal. This is all part of Satan's ruse, his game to make you doubt what's going on. Such is the case that I mentioned in part one of this series of blogs - the case in Rome with Cristina. She has periods of time where she's snarling like some kind of beast and cursing and snapping, and then minutes later she's laughing and smiling and carrying on a normal conversation with the people around her, totally unaware of her behavior just before.

Even to this day Mary doesn't remember many of the incidents I'm writing about.

Here's a point they don't often dwell on in the movies - possession can only occur through invitation. The invitation doesn't have to be engraved, or explicit. The invitation can be quite accidental, through ignorance as opposed to purpose. If th…

Parable of the Sower

Matthew 13: 18-23

“Listen then to what the parable of the sower means: When anyone hears the message about the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in their heart. This is the seed sown along the path.  The seed falling on rocky ground refers to someone who hears the word and at once receives it with joy.  But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away. The seed falling among the thorns refers to someone who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, making it unfruitful.  But the seed falling on good soil refers to someone who hears the word and understands it. This is the one who produces a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.”

I've read that parable so many times. I'm sure most of us have. It's kind of a Bible Study staple. Yet, as many times as I've rea…

Possession - part two

Matthew 12: 43-46

“When an impure spirit comes out of a person, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it.Then it says, ‘I will return to the house I left.’ When it arrives, it finds the house unoccupied, swept clean and put in order.Then it goes and takes with it seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there. And the final condition of that person is worse than the first. That is how it will be with this wicked generation.”

I have a friend named Mary. We've known each other for quite a few years now. We met when I had just moved into my house in East Haven, CT. I joined a "paranormal investigation team". Yeah, I know, it sounds ridiculous to me, too now. But at the time I was very excited about ghosthunting and making friends. It was a social thing to do in a new place and took my level of scare-seeking to the next level. Mary was the group's "medium". Since she was a small child she'd been seeing and comm…

Comes the Dawn

Just the other day I was going through my closet, looking for something. You know how this goes after you hit the age of 50, right? You start looking for one thing and find something else and get so totally sidetracked that you never even remember what it was you were originally looking for, right?  So, I was looking for a shoe. I figured it might be in my closet. I may never know, because every time I go to my closet for something.... Anyway, at the back of my closet is a metal lock-box. I don't have a key for it so I hope it never actually gets locked. I don't even know where the box came from but it seems like I've had it forever. The box is stuffed full of the past. There are a few photographs in there, and I can't figure out why they're in there instead of with the other photos in the house, but there they are. There's a copy of my high school newspaper from my freshman year. I know why that's there - that was the year Marty (now my husband) graduated…

Possession - part one

Do you like scary stories? I grew up on them. A steady diet of scary stories, scary books and scary movies from a young age led to my adulthood involvement in even scarier things.

"Ghost hunting" and "paranormal investigations" at night seemed like harmless distractions from long days of being trapped in an office. The nightly distractions also satisfied my craving for anything and everything frightening. Of course, while nothing turned out to be what it seemed, the truth was far more terrifying than anything I originally imagined. I've blogged about the reality of the "paranormal" before so I'll leave it at that for now.

Marty and I recently watched a documentary on exorcism, which was put together by the guy who directed the iconic movie, The Exorcist. It featured a 90 year old exorcist from Rome. This case that was featured was that of a woman named Cristina who had been possessed for quite a few years and was currently undergoing her eighth o…

I am Content

Philippians 4:11-13New King James Version (NKJV)11 Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: 12 I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. 13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
I love that scripture. During different phases of my life I've had different favorite scriptures but I always come back to this one.  I have lived through times of great abundance and times of great need. I've had years where I've bought homes and cars and taken vacations and never looked at a price tag. And I've had years where I've eaten Ramon Noodles and boxed mac and cheese every day and have been thankful for even having that. There have been times when I've been surrounded by friends and family and support and other phases of life where I've stood alone.  I've had great paying desk jobs…