Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Blog Tour: Chasing Shadows

A Brita Madison Paranormal Mystery

Paranormal Mystery/Crime Drama/Police Procedural
Date Published: January 26, 2015

"Only the living are so persistent. The dead seem to understand that time is no longer an issue for them."

Brita is at best a reluctant psychic, and Chief of Police James Weston is the "poster boy for conservative." Can he accept the unimaginable?

Brita Madison has found a sanctuary in Williams, Arizona, a refuge from the multitude of visions and voices that have chased her all her life. Then one vision touches her soul, and she finds herself embroiled in the middle of a missing person's case with a woman’s life at stake. Little does she know that this is only the beginning.
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Brita's visions uncover a trail of murders centered around the historic Route 66. As Brita steps deeper into the world she has been trying to escape, she and Weston are in a race against time to identify the serial killer. This journey threatens to tear apart their lives as well as those closest to them.

"Chasing after the shadows left behind by sick minds is damaging to one's soul when you are just following the clues. Vicariously experiencing the trauma through visions like Brita's would have to tear at the very fabric of your being." – Chief of Police James Weston

Chief Weston sat down at his desk and opened the take-out carton of moo goo gai pan he had picked up on the way in from the accident scene. He couldn't believe he had been so far off track with this one. He had been certain it was foul play. Secretly, he knew that he had been hell-bent on proving that Brad was the perp. Was he getting that jaded? Was he so bored that he was starting to create crime where there was none?
Shaking his head in frustration, he thought about his time as Chief of Police. Most of the town folk believed he somehow inherited the position when his dad died, but that wasn't true. He earned the title. He had studied hard in college, majoring in criminology, making top grades. He could have gone anywhere, but he was a small town kind of guy.
His ex-wife, however, wasn't. His college sweetheart, Jenna had only lasted three years before packing her bags and leaving. He had not spoken to her since the divorce was final. Sometimes he did wonder if she and her graphic design degree had made it to the big time. Maybe she was right. Maybe this town was just too small for big ambitions. Were his ambitions more than Williams could meet? The truth was that he didn't have the answer to that question. He just knew that he wanted to make a difference, to be one of the good guys.
Tossing the take-out carton in the trash, he finished off his soda. He wasn't looking forward to going out to Miss Madison's house to take her statement. Obviously, she knew something or she couldn't have located Crista, but he just didn't believe this psychic crap. He wasn't a Bible-thumper, but talking to the dead or in this case, the nearly dead … come on! Whatever the story was with Brita Madison, he would get to the bottom of it. He grabbed his keys and headed out. Best to get it over with.
Weston knocked firmly on the front door of Miss Madison's house, knowing it was important that she view him as an authority figure, one who wasn't going to fall for her line of bull. He saw her approaching through the glass panes in the upper half of the front door. She pulled the door open quickly, turned, and motioned for him to come in. Realizing he had just lost his authoritative edge, he sighed heavily and followed her into the living room. He was impressed as he looked around her log cabin. It looked a lot like what he hoped to build one day if he ever saved up enough money to buy some property.
Brita motioned for him to have a seat on one of the two couches situated in an L-shape in front of the fireplace. He sat on the one closest to the door and placed his hat beside him. He took out his notebook and a pen.
Seeking to take control of the situation, he said, "Now, Miss Madison, I'd like to start from the beginning—" 
'Would you like something to drink? I just made some fresh coffee." Brita was still angry with this man, and she didn't plan on making this easy for him.
"Sure. That sounds good," he replied amiably, not wanting to appear too ill-disposed toward her. Brita headed for the kitchen area. From where he was sitting, Weston could see every move she made, and it was obvious she was deliberately taking her time.
"Miss Madison—"
"Sorry, I can't really hear you very well. Wait until I get back in the living room." With her back turned to him, she chanced a small grin. This might turn out to be fun, she thought. Picking up the two cups, she walked carefully back into the living room and set his coffee on the end table. "Okay, what were you saying?"
Weston cleared his throat, feeling less in control by the minute. "Miss Madison, I need to know how you knew where to look for Crista Long."
She looked him right in the eye for a few seconds before responding. "I believe I explained that to you this morning, did I not?"
Shaking his head, he realized that this was not going to be an easy task. This woman obviously had a few screws loose. "Miss Madison, you and I both know that your having visions is just a ploy for getting attention. Nonetheless, I need to know the truth, or I'm going to have to charge you for lying to a law enforcement officer in the course of an investigation."
Brita had done a lot of research as an editor and was familiar with laws, at least enough to know that he was just trying to intimidate her. "First of all, I didn't lie. Your not believing me does not make me a liar. Besides, you would have a hard time proving I lied about anything since I'm the one who found her," she retorted. Feeling like she had won this round, she pushed back on the couch and drew her legs up beside her.
Waving his hand dismissively, Weston said, "Have it your way." Brita could barely keep her laughter in check at the way he had managed to avoid the issue. "Then tell me from start to finish about your so-called visions," he demanded. 

Dannye Williamsen

Paranormal abilities related to the mind intrigue me because they draw attention to the possibilities that lie outside the acceptable range of thinking for most people. Stories that embrace the paranormal make the reader want to dig deeper and reach higher to partake of such miraculous experiences, to step outside the humdrum of one's normal life. Whether the stories are mysteries, suspense, or romance, the paranormal element allows a writer to present a unique perspective.

As an empathic writer, I experience an altered state when I sit down to the keyboard. I am not able to daydream about my story or work it all out in my head when I am away from the keyboard. Once my fingers are on the keys, I step into the characters emotionally. In writing the story, I experience intensely personal relationships with them, despite their being fictional. I feel their pain, their joy, and allow them to lead the way in unfolding the story. In writing all my books, including the nonfiction, it has been a dedicated investment of energy, and I am truly grateful for the experiences.

Sandy Wolters 
I started writing paranormal romance relatively late in life. I was fifty-years old when I published my first book. Many would ask why it took so long to start a writing career that I was so compelled to do, and I really only have one answer. Life experiences finally brought me to the place where I felt I had something to offer. 

The romantic influence of my writing career came easy because I married my high school sweetheart, and we’ve been together ever since. I thank the stars above for him every day of my life. I’m living the romantic dream, people, with the man I was destined to be with, and it feels wonderful! Every romance I write, he is right there in the forefront of my mind. 

The paranormal influence of my writing also came at a young age but was much more subtle. My books have always contained hints of the supernatural, anything from ghosts of loved ones to psychic abilities. My personal experience with the paranormal started at a young age and blossomed over the years.


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