I’ve been tagged for #NextBigThing Challenge

Posted: November 10, 2012 in blog tours
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I’ve been tagged for #NextBigThing Challenge!

I’ve been tagged to participate in the Next Big Thing blog hop. I’d like to thank Alexandra Anthony for the tag! I’m going to “borrow” the same graphic that the other tagged authors used on their posts for this hop. That way it will connect the blog postings.

Rules for this Blog Hop:

1. Give credit to the one(s) who tagged youThank you, Alexandra!
2. Answer the following questions about your latest work in progress.
3. Tag five other authors and let them know you’ve tagged them.

I’m currently working on a few writing projects, but today I’ll talk about “The Vampire from Hell Returns (Part 4) – The Vampire from Hell.”

1. What is the title of your book?

The Vampire from Hell Returns (Part 4) – The Vampire from Hell

2. Where did the idea come from for the book?

After reading vampire fiction for many years, I grew tired of the same themes and plots. That’s when I decided to write my own paranormal romance. I thought what if Satan  turned one of his daughters into a vampire in Hell? And what if she was a fan of mankind, not interested in his quest for world domination? What would she be like? Meet Rayea, the Vampire from Hell. Oddly enough this idea hit me when I bought this t-shirt at Wal-Mart. Zombie Vampires from Hell!

3 .What genre does your book fall under?

I’m not totally sure actually. I think of it as a paranormal fantasy with some romantic elements.

4. Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie?

Hahaha, I haven’t thought of that, but I suppose since I do base many of my characters on celebrities I’m intrigued with, I’d say I already have a cast list. This is just my idea of the characters. Anyone who reads my series may have a different idea for who each character could be played by. Here we go:

For the bad guys, I asked my readers to help me select possible actors for Rayea’s evil sister, Stephanie and her father, Satan. Here’s who they picked:

Stephanie could be played by any of these actresses – Genevieve PadaleckiMilla JovovichUma Thurman or Rooney Mara.

Satan/Lucifer could be played by any of these actors – Michael SheenAl PacinoRon Perlman or Peter Stormore

5. How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

Quite a few months. Part 1 was a short story I wrote in a class. That took a couple of months to flesh out, but I think I was really planning the whole concept of the series when I wrote those first 20 pages.

6. What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

Wow, a loaded question. I don’t know for sure, but I do know that I hear from readers who have read Twilight that they like my books too.  That’s really a wonderful comment I don’t get tired of hearing.

7. Who or what inspired you to write this book?

My writing instructor was a published author of paranormal romance.  She had gotten published the traditional way (getting her manuscript accepted by a major publishing house).  When she read my story, she startled me with two observations: 1) She had enjoyed reading my story, and 2) She suggested my looking into publishing it online.  “Publishing Ebooks is the up and coming thing,” she said. I was determined to get published after that. January 9, 2011 was that day for me.

8. What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

When people hear the title “The Vampire from Hell,” they think it’s a book about bad vampires killing humans, a very dark book.  I like it when they find out that Rayea is fighting for us against her father who is Satan it starts to make sense. I like that concept. Sometimes things aren’t what they seem to be at first.

9. How about a teaser?

“Maybe.  I don’t know.  I thought my blood was too strong for humans.  I don’t want to be running around turning all my friends into vampires, you know?  Look, I need to go.”

“I understand,” Death replied.

“Thank you by the way,” I hastily added.

“For what?”

“For taking care of her.  I’m her maker and I should be there while she goes through this.”

“Ray, you should know by now there’s nothing I wouldn’t do for you.”

My voice caught in my throat and I returned more of a mumbly grunt into the phone.  Finally I replied, “Thanks.”

“Hey, will you do me a small favor?”

“What?” I asked as I turned around to the house surveying where everyone was.  I noticed Blick was slowly walking down the steps leading towards the beach as the group disbanded.  “Yeah,” I said again into the phone.

“Give Blick a chance, okay?”  He’s more than sweet on you.  Don’t make the same mistake…”  He paused not finishing his sentence.  “Just give him a chance.”

Knowing exactly what Death meant, I snapped back.  “You’re bringing this up now and you know I have my head elsewhere.  I’ll deal with that when I have time, okay?”

His voice came back across the line again like electronic venom lashing out at me.  “You can’t trust people, Rayea.  Jesus Christ, you certainly can’t trust guys!  That’s why it ended.  You wouldn’t love me like I loved you, okay?  Make that same mistake again with this guy and you’ll regret it.  Do you hear me?”

Tears rose in my eyes and I immediately swiveled my feet in the sand so I was facing out to the ocean again, gripping the phone like it was a gun to my head.  Blick was headed my way as I listened to Death’s verbal assault.  I couldn’t let him see me being suddenly distraught.

I heard Death breathe a few times into the phone.  “Okay, I’m a dick.  I admit it, okay?  I’m sorry, Ray.  I’m sorry.  Just think about it.  Will you?”

I nodded in response.  Then realizing that I was on a phone call, I agreed and replied with a ‘yes’ into the phone for Death.

“Okay, I’ll talk to you later.”  The line instantly went dead.

When I stuffed my iPhone in my back pocket, I was ready to kill the first person I could get my hands on.  Obviously it couldn’t be Blick.  I also realized I was thirsty.  Thirsty for water, for blood, for anything, anything but the reality I would have to face some day.  Blick and I needed to sit down and have a long chat.

As I waited for Blick to join me on the beach, I listened to his footsteps approaching and composed myself.  My heart raced and my breathing was starting to become erratic.  I focused and counted down from 10.  By the time I got to 5, I was better.  The trick Blick had taught me of focusing on my breathing to calm myself and think straight was invaluable.  But trying to get my mind to slow down still didn’t work for me, especially if I was hungry.

The thoughts plowed through my head as I stood motionless, watching the water.  Could I reach out to him?  Could I stuff my pride in a box and let him know he was the only reason I looked forward to facing another day?  The extracurricular activities.  They meant nothing in the end.  The other guys meant nothing.  He was the man who held my heart, and soul.

Blick tapped me on the shoulder so gently it felt like a gust of wind had passed near me instead of a person’s touch.

I glanced up and saw him staring down at me, patiently holding two glasses in each hand.  One glass contained red liquid, the other with green.

“Smoothies,” I asked.  I prayed the green smoothie was not for me because I instantly thought of the color of my father’s demon eyes when I saw it.

“Yes.”  He shoved the glass at me.

I stepped back for a moment as the liquid sloshed out of the glass.

“That was a waste of fucking time.  Typhean is being such a prick!  J wants us to take a break to cool down.”

When I heard Blick’s curse word, I almost choked on my smoothie.  Blick did not swear…ever.  I knew this was bad.  I swallowed the liquid quickly and thought, “Of course it’s bad.  I’m on my way home to Hell, and I bet I have to go alone.”

“Okay,” I finally replied.  I remained quiet, watching him inhale the large glass of green whatever.  I paused for a moment still staring up at him.

His gold eyes flashed as he returned my gaze.  I wanted to reach out and grab his hand in mine, but I hesitated.

“You’ll have to change into something more battle-worthy if you have to go.  Can I talk to you while you do, back up at the house?”

“Sure,” I brightened, finishing off my red smoothie.  Not being able to taste any blood was wonderful.  I loved how he made them where I couldn’t taste the metallic-ness.  For a brief second, I thought to ask whose blood I had drunk, but seeing how preoccupied Blick was, I let the question drop.  Instead I went for the comedy relief angle.  “Always trying to get me out of my clothes, hmmm?” I purred.

Reaching out for his hand, he immediately pulled it away.  He clenched his jaw and a vein in his neck spasmed.  “This is work, Rayea.  We don’t have time for that.”  He yanked his fingers through his black hair with both his hands.

Feeling defeated, I assumed the same professional manner with him.  “You bet.  My apologies.  What was I thinking?  I was making a joke to lighten the mood, Blick.  That’s all.  But fuck me, okay.  I’m an idiot.  I get that.”

I stomped past him, feeling one of the laces on my sneakers loosen.  I made a big production about passing in front of him.

“Why don’t you stay here on the beach?  I can dress myself.”

Before I knew it, he pulled me into his arms.  His large height of seven-feet enveloped me and I came face to face with his muscular chest.  His white t-shirt glared in the sunlight.  Thank god, I can’t burn up to a crisp in this sunshine, I thought.  But if I did, Blick’s beautiful chest was the last thing I’d want to see.  Well almost the last thing, I giggled.

I closed my eyes and let Blick hold me.  My mind and body instantly calmed and I sank into his embrace.  No questions asked.  He didn’t say a word as he held me.  He simply rocked me slightly back and forth as he stroked my black hair.  I wanted to collapse into a pile of jelly on the beach before him.

I pushed away from him some to give us a little bit of distance as his hands slowly traveled to rest on my waist.  I felt his strong hands as he laced his fingers in a couple of the belt loops on my blue jeans.  Must this end? I wondered.

“I’m sorry, Blick.  I know this is no laughing matter.  I’ve got to go.  I’ve got to save Lynn and Ashton if it’s not too late.  What did J tell you that I’m not supposed to know?”

“It’s your first mission.  It’s a test.  J said if you save your friends, the council will look favorably on that.  But he wants to explore more options.  He’s making some calls now.”

My eyes grew wide as I listened to him.  “We’re running out of time!”

He nodded.  “I know.  I know.  It’s such bullshit.  I’m so tired of the politics.”

I swallowed hard and let my head fall on his chest.

He continued to rub his hands through my hair, lazily, aimlessly.  It felt like it was an eternity before he spoke again and shattered our bliss.

“I can’t go with you.  I’ve been instructed to stand down on this one.”

My body tightened and I broke our embrace, immediately sobering as reality reared its ugly head again.  I heard a light vibration sound and realized it was Blick’s phone.

He pulled his iPhone from his back pocket and stared at it.  His face reddened slightly.  He muttered a few expletivies under his breath and my heart sank.

“Beelzebub contacted J and made a deal with him.  You’ll accompany Beelzebub to Hell…” He paused, fighting to control his growing rage as he violently stuffed his phone in the back pocket of his jeans.

“Blick,” I whispered.  This time I grabbed his hand, knowing he could very easily rip it off if he changed into his werewolf self in front of me.

“I’m okay,” he grunted and stepped away from me.  Assuming a crouched position, Blick rubbed his hands over the upper portion of his jeans.  Repeatedly he rubbed his hands over his jeans and chewed his lips like he was waiting for a quarterback to hike a football.  Is that some new meditation pose, I wondered?

Suddenly he jerked up and flung his hands out.  “You’ll accompany Beelzebub to Hell as his prisoner.  They agreed it’s the best way to get you in.”

“That’s fucking ridiculous,” I began.  I felt like I had been kicked in the stomach and I was ready to vent to the gods and have a knock down drag out “Oh Hell No” conversation with Blick and anyone else who thought I was going back to Hell like some bound smock.  “No, no way.  No.  No.  No.”

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw that Blick was not trying to calm me down as I made a scene in the sand.  He was fighting to keep his own emotions in check and he simply nodded now and then.

Having always protected me from any and every threat, Blick refused to put me in harm’s way.  He was beyond livid and he detested having to do as J said, especially when it came to my welfare.  Then it dawned on me.  My going to Hell would be harder on him than me.  If I didn’t agree with J and Beelzebub’s deal,  I had to come up with one of my own and freaking fast.

“Can you give me a second please?” I asked.

As Blick wrinkled his eyebrows at me, he asked.  “What are you up to?”

“Just a second.”

“You’re not calling anyone.  Hand me your phone now.”

Blick knew me too well.  I produced my phone from my back pocket and placed it in his hands.  His tan was so lovely.  It made me wonder just how much of his body was or wasn’t tanned.  Momentarily, I thought of asking him if he had any tan lines, but I let the thought drift to the back of my skull.  Later, I surmised.  I can ask him that later.

I stepped away from Blick and faced the water.  I knew he was still close enough in proximity that I could reach for him if necessary.  I used every ounce of vampire speed I had to think of a million scenarios.  I felt the blood from the smoothie race through my veins.  Images flashed before my eyes as I let the possibilities play out in my head like I was playing a hundred chess games at once.  It was a trick I had learned while patiently indulging Typhean in the few fire powers he showed me.  His imagination was weak at best.

I had my own deal with Beelzebub and I was going to hold up my end of the bargain even if he didn’t.  Getting Lynn and Ashton free was my top priority.  Beelzebub could have control of Hell then.  My safety was secondary.  I didn’t want to tell Blick that, but it looked like I was going to have to make a deal with the devil, in this case my sister, if I was going to get my friends out of Hell.  She wanted me.  She didn’t want them.

As I let my body relax, I felt like I could let the images go and disconnect from the telepathy channel I had tapped into.  This time it had been rather easy and I wondered if the red smoothie had anything to do with it.

Then quite suddenly a face assaulted my mind’s eye.  The creature’s green eyes glowed at me in the dark.  He shouted a few times in my direction, but I realized he wasn’t talking to me.  Who was he yelling at?  “Where is she.  Is she with him?  Tell me, human?  Is she?  My daughter should be at my side, not his,” he roared.

“Lynn!” I screamed.

I came to as I saw Blick jolt up from a resting place on the sand.  He tried to grab me by my elbows so I wouldn’t fall, but I fell anyways.  The brief moments of seeing Father again even through my mind’s eye evaporated my strength, but I couldn’t focus on that.  My friends were in danger.

Rayea, Rayea, are you okay?  What?  What is it?”

“Where’s J?  Where is he?  We have to tell him.  Blick, it’s Lynn.  Father has her.  He’s alive.  Father’s alive and he’s looking for me!  We have to do something!  We have to get them out of there!  He’s going to kill them!”

Before I could regain my energy and stand, a searing hot pain crossed over my back like it was on fire.  Shrieking I fell to the ground.  “Blick, Blick,” I gasped.

Typhean’s voice resounded in my head as he entered my body again in the form of the dragon tattoo I had.  “Not Blick, my friend.  Typhean.  The time is at hand.  We must be on our way.  Your father is calling for you and he has reclaimed his throne in Hell.  He wants his daughters at his side.  We mustn’t be late for the party.

The last thing I remembered was gripping the toe of Blick’s tennis shoe as darkness overwhelmed me.

Copyright 2012 Ally Thomas

Thank you for stopping by and reading this article. Here’s the authors I’ve decided to tag. It may take them a while to post, so check back often.

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