Welcome to the blog tour celebrating the
1 Year Anniversary of the release of the
Paranormal Gothic Horror Novel
by Clarissa Johal
Follow the tour to read new reviews, interviews with Clarissa,
and exclusive excerpts.
“The shadows hadn’t been waiting. The shadows had been invited.”
After a painful breakup, Gwynneth Reese moves in with her best friend and takes a job at a retirement home. She grows especially close to one resident, who dies alone the night of a terrific storm. On the way home from paying her last respects, Gwynneth is caught in another storm and is struck by lightning. She wakes in the hospital with a vague memory of being rescued by a mysterious stranger. Following her release from the hospital, the stranger visits her at will and offers Gwynneth a gift–one that will stay the hands of death. Gwynneth is uncertain whether Julian is a savior or something more sinister… for as he shares more and more of this gift, his price becomes more and more deadly.
They perused the aisles of clothing together, Fenten carrying a mountain of clothes to try on and Gwynneth with two T-shirts.
“Pick something else, Gwennie,” he complained. “A dress or something that looks hot.”
“Where am I going to wear something hot, Fenten?” she scoffed. “I’m sure all the residents would appreciate that.”
“Not for work, girl. For going out.”
“I don’t go out.”
“Maybe you should. When’s the last time you and Seth went out for a night on the town? Dancing or clubbing? You two need to get drunk together.”
She felt her cheeks warm slightly. It was stuffy in the clothing store. “I don’t know of any place to go.”
“In San Francisco? Honey, there are more places than you could cover in a lifetime. Next time I go out, you’re both coming with me.”
She didn’t say anything to that. The idea of trolling the singles clubs scared her more than she cared to admit.
“How about this?” Fenten held up a red dress.
“Nice? There’s no nice about this dress. It’s hot, is what it is. You’d look great in it, too. Try it on.” He tossed it at her.
She sighed, exasperated. “It’s too fancy. I don’t think it will look good on me.”
“Go.” He gave her a little push toward the changing room. “Just try it on. And give me those.” He grabbed the T-shirts from her. “Enough with the T-shirts. Think grown-up clothes. You’ve got a body underneath those poor excuses for fashion. You need to find it.”
“Fine, I’ll try it on,” she said. “You can be so pushy, seriously.”
She checked the corridor of changing rooms. They were all empty, save for the one at the end, which seemed to have some movement in it. She started for the first door and found it locked. She tried the second and again found it locked. All of them, except for the changing room next to the one occupied, were locked. Exasperated, she set the dress hanger on the post of that one and closed the door. Shimmying out of her jeans and T-shirt, she unzipped the red dress and slipped it over her head, carefully navigating her burn. She decided not to zip it up and then checked the mirror. It was a beautiful dress. Really it was. “It’s just not me,” she murmured. “Too fancy.”
Gwynneth stared at her reflection and frowned. It was getting darker in the store. She looked up. Over-bright fluorescent lights glared down at her. “What the hell?” Her T-shirt slipped from the peg. As she bent to pick it up, something dark shot out from under the changing room beside her and snatched it. “Hey!” She knocked on the wall. “Hello? That’s my T-shirt!”
She peered under the short wall that separated the changing rooms. The room next to hers appeared empty. I swear there was somebody in there a second ago. Maybe they’re standing on the chair. “Hello?” She knocked again. Hesitant, she stepped out of her changing room and tried the perpetrator’s door. The light overhead flickered, and the door swung open.
The dressing room was empty. Her T-shirt lay on the ground. She bent to retrieve it and caught what should have been her reflection in the mirror. But it wasn’t her reflection. The mirror was completely black. Gwynneth froze in horror. Something was watching her from the other side. She could feel its presence, poised and waiting to spring. A hissing whisper made its way into her ear and trailed away. She backed out of the dressing room and fled down the corridor.
“Okay, now you look hot, Gwennie,” Fenten remarked as she joined him.“The fact that you didn’t zip it up? Even better.”
Bex ‘n’ Books
Bibliophilic Book Blog
Straight from the Library
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):
I started out writing fantasy fiction. I was working on the second installment to my PRADEE series when there were two characters that kept showing up on the page, over and over. They didn’t belong in fantasy novel, nor did they belong in my story! But their backstory came to me so vividly, that I set aside my series and wrote my first paranormal novel, BETWEEN. I’ve been pulled into the Otherworld permanently now. The ideas come faster than I can write them down.
January 1: Tour Kick-Off http://saphsbookblog.blogspot.com/
January 2: Exclusive Excerpt http://ifeeltheneedtheneedtoread.com/
January 4: Review http://www.carolynspearromance.com/blog
January 5: Review HorrorMade.blogspot.com
January 7: Exclusive Excerpt http://saphsbookblog.blogspot.com/
January 9: Exclusive Excerpt http://aliciajoseph.com/
January 12: Review https://twitter.com/peach83352
January 15: Exclusive Excerpt https://darcnina.wordpress.com
January 17: Review http://mullenarmyfamily.blogspot.com/
January 19: Exclusive Excerpt http://sloanetaylor.blogspot.com/
January 20: Exclusive Excerpt http://www.babsbookbistro.net/
January 21: Interview http://ifeeltheneedtheneedtoread.com/
January 23: Exclusive Excerpt https://fillingspaces.wordpress.com/
January 26: Interview http://karengreco.blogspot.com/
January 28: Review http://neutiquamerro.wordpress.com
January 31: Reviews (by 3 different tour hosts)
When you’re trying to get a name for yourself as a writer, you have to put your work out there. And that can be scary. The fear of rejection isn’t something that can be shrugged off and ignored. It’s very real, regardless if you’ve been published many times before, or never.
In January 2014, I had the opportunity to submit my first story to a great publication. It was for Women in Horror Month, and I was as nervous as anyone could imagine. I didn’t expect my story was good enough to be accepted, so when I got that email saying that my story was going to run in the February 2014 issue of Sirens Call, I was over the moon. And after that, I started to take my writing more seriously.
Which is why I decided to submit another story.
In the December…
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It may not be my place to say, but I think a good number of authors should read this post that discusses realistic expectations. As a small publisher, I would like to point out that it is equally as difficult for a small to middling publisher to promote your work as it is for you in this over-flushed world of publishing – but that doesn’t mean we should stop trying. We work hand in hand with every one of our authors to promote them as strongly as they work to promote themselves, but we can only do so if, one – they are working at promoting their own work; and two – they make us (the publisher) aware of it. Please, read the blog post. There is a great deal of ‘real world’ knowledge to be found here… whether or not the genre references are specific to you.
Due to a payment structure change at Sirens Call Publications, we’ve reopened our call for stories of experiments taking place in a mental ward. Here’s what we’re looking for –
Mental Ward: Experiments (A Horror Anthology)
The elevator doors open, the lights are flickering, the gurney is wheeled into a dank, dimly-lit hallway well below ground. Does the Doctor have the patient’s best interests at heart, or is something more nefarious going on? How does the staff figure out what treatments are most effective and which are not?
In our other two Mental Ward collections, we asked you to tell us what happened above ground in the institute itself; what memories of the past were trapped in the abandoned hallways; now we’re asking you to tell us what goes on behind closed doors. The secret experiments that are feared and whispered about among the patients. Tell us what unthinkable things greed, the corruption of power, and the desire to be remembered will drive a Doctor to do to the unfortunate patients left in their care.
Tell your tale from whoever’s perspective you’d like, just make sure the story you tell is a depraved one.
Note: This is a reopened anthology. This is also a HORROR anthology. Your story must contain the following three elements to be considered for inclusion:
- Your story must take place in a Mental Asylum or Institution.
- Your story must involve individuals from the Asylum: doctors, nurses, patients, maintenance staff, etc.
- Your story must contain what would be considered an inhumane experiment that is physically performed.
Submission Deadline: March 1, 2015
Word Count: minimum 4,000 words; maximum: 8,000 words.
Payment: $25 per story selected for inclusion.
Copyright: First time worldwide copyright for a period of one year after publication.
Reprints will NOT be considered.
Please view our website for full guidelines and submission requirements – www.SirensCallPublications.com