Amazon’s Folly & Corpse Shopping

I got this in my email today and it made me giggle:


Quick! Buy the entire Joleene Naylor collection from Amazon today. Amazon told you to, so you know you have to do it. 😉

Let me rush right out and buy those. Be nice if they are sending this message to other people (sales have been abysmal so far this summer, probably because I’ve done no marketing), but I doubt it. Amazon is just desperate to get me to buy something and those were probably the last things I looked at.

Yeah, I have been mainly offline for awhile. My house flooded, as I may have mentioned on here, and we had to move, which of course was an unexpected disaster. We’re nearly settled in; the bedrooms aren’t done yet, and we still have no couch, but all the junk/ruined stuff has been gotten rid of and we at least have regular internet again. Maybe I’ll get back to posting. Wouldn’t that be nice?

And while I am sharing funny things, look at this spam comment I had:


“They do, however, charge you for every corpse they take.”

I’m not sure WHO charges per corpse, but I guess it’s nice to know they aren’t PAYING for them. 😉

New website coming soon. I may post previews later.

Have a good one!

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Interview with Sin

Hello! My name is Katelina, and welcome to Weekend Character Interviews. Using state of the art-mumbo-jumbo author magic, Jo has temporarily bent the laws of fictional space and time to allow various literary universes to converge long enough for me to ask different characters a few questions. Since I spend a lot of time in the Amaranthine series quizzing vampires on what they’re doing, where they’re going and why, Jo thought I would be the perfect interviewer.

Today we are interviewing Sin from Shaun Allan’s novel Sin.

Katelina: Hello Sin! Welcome! So the book is named after you?

Sin: Yep. The book I’m in is called Sin.  Yes, the same as my name.  That wasn’t my doing – I’m not being all self-obsessed or anything like that.  Blame the writer, some guy called Shaun Allan or something.

K: Must be nice. My series is named after a flower or a rock or something. I dunno, my lousy author found it on Enough of that, why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself?

S: I’m just an ordinary guy.

Well, I wish I was just an ordinary guy.  Unfortunately I’m not.  People have a habit of dying around me.  As such, though I’m originally from Grimsby, an old fishing port in the UK, I’m now residing in a mental asylum.

I’m 5’9”, a few pounds more than I would like but not many and my hair is grey at my temples.  It’s been that way for years.  I can’t think why.  Oh, and I’ve got a nice bum.

Well, I may not have, but I thought I’d throw that in there.

K: Wow, well at least you have a sense of humor still. You say people die around you? Um… I’m not going to ask how. Heh-heh.  Though I’ve seen a lot of people die, and as someone with a …  maybe similar experience(No, no, I don’t want to know HOW they die… I don’t judge) I have to ask, are you haunted by those that have died? 

S: Yes.  I hear their screams every night and most days.  When it gets too much, I kick-off so they come and top up my drug levels.  Not that it works particularly well.

K: They give you drugs? What the heck! I don’t get drugs! Moving on, would you say you evolve through the story?

S: I do, yes.  In various ways.  At the start, people tend not to be keen on me, which is a shame as I’m actually lovely (honest).  As the story goes on, they realise that, although bad things happen, I do try my best to stop them.  Also, I do end up getting a handle on these issues (without giving anything away) and do my best to make good.

Asylum for Insane, Queen West, Toronto, Ontario, Canada (1910)

photo by Toronto Public Library Special Collections under CC license

K: Well, you seem okay to me. But then my boyfriend rips vampires’ hearts out, so you know. Speaking of that, do you have any enemies in this book?

S:  I do, though I don’t realise it to begin with.  There’s Dr. Connors.  To the outside world, he’s a talented psychiatrist whose only intent is to help and care for people.  Well, that’s not entirely true.  He knows what I can do and wants to use it for himself.

K: So is defeating him your biggest challenge in the book?

S: No. It’s accepting myself, I suppose.  Coming to terms with everything that I’d done.  And facing my sister, who died – although she might just be in my head.

K: In your head, huh? (Still not judging). So, how about the romance angle in the story? Are you involved with someone?

S:  I was, once.  But she used to take a certain bus to work…

K: Um… okay. I’m going to guess… nope, no guessing. So what would you say is the one thing you want most?

S: To be normal.  To be able to watch TV, walk down the street or eat a bacon butty and not worry if people will die.

K: I’ve heard of bacon butties, but what are they? How do you make them?

S: Don’t use smoked bacon, and make sure it’s just edging on crispy.  Then you only need bread and butter.  Why mess about with the taste by adding ketchup or brown sauce?

Commence Battle Bacon!

photo by Mafu under CC license

K: So it’s a bacon and butter sandwich? Interesting. That actually sounds kind of good.

S: Oh!  Why did you make me think of a bacon butty?  We only get slop in here, so the last thing I need to be thinking of is a crispy bacon butty… Thanks…

K: Sorry about that, though you did mention them first… You’re not a serial killer are you? No, never mind, don’t tell me. Let’s just go with this question: What event do you feel shaped your personality?

S: Probably being called ‘Sin’ by my parents.  It caused a lot of beatings in the playground and a lot of jokes from my father.  It meant I treat most things, good or bad, with a dry sense of humour laced with sarcasm.

K: Oh. I thought that was like a nickname. It looks like we’re running out of time, but I have two questions left. If you could say one thing to your readers, what would it be?

S: Don’t flip a coin you happen to find on the street.  See a penny, pick it up and all day long you’ll have good luck.  That’s what they told you.  They lied.

K: That’s a bit cryptic. And if you could say one thing to your author?

S: Couldn’t you have written for Disney instead?

K: That’s a good one! I’d ask mine that but she’s such a psycho Disney wouldn’t take her!


And with that we’re out of time! You can find Sin in his own self-titled novel Sin by Shaun Allan, available at Amazon:

And a special thank you to Shaun Allan for playing along!

If you’re an author and would like your character(s) to be interviewed by me, then check out this very cool page that has all the details:

101 Tips… Revamped!

It’s been two years since I published 101 Tips for Traveling with a Vampire. At the time I expected it to have ten downloads, but since then it’s had over 27,000. I’m sure when it comes to free ebooks that’s not an astronomical number, but since it is getting downloaded I thought it might be time to give it a polish.

101 Tips for Traveling with a Vampire – Revamped features a new, shorter intro that plainly tells potential readers what the book is before they download it. I’ve also replaced the free “preview” of book 2 with a sneak peek of book 4 (which still needs a title! Eek!). The biggest change is that I added Jonathan Harvey as a co-author.


Jonathan actually came up with about a third of the tips (previously uncredited)  because in 2010 he was feverishly finishing up his Unusual Christian Devotional, Shades of Plaid, and the two seemed at a cross purpose. But, since we’re now working on a vampire Willy book (we have some pages! Really!) I don’t think the association will do him any damage and it might even build up his vampire credibility.

With listing him as a contributing author, we also added in a free sample of Shades of Plaid. I know, it’s not very vampirey, but it will do until we get a chunk of vampire Willy ready to go and then we can swap that in, instead.

Just what is 101 Tips for Traveling with a Vampire? It’s just that, a list of 101 Tips for traveling with a vampire, though many of them can be used as travel tips even if you don’t take the undead along. It’s not a novel. It’s not a short story. If you want those then check out my Amaranthine series or my Vampire Morsels.  But, if you’re looking to kill ten minutes for free and get a sneak peek at book 4, then give it a shot.

On Smashwords

On Amazon

(The new version will filter down to Barnes & Noble, etc. in the next couple of weeks)


Special Guest Appearance!

Jorick and Katelina are making a special guest appearance over on the Terrible Turtle Conspiracy site. Stop by and see what Christmassy hijinks are afoot!

“Heck yeah! I want to see what Jonathan’s done to them….”



Interview with The Mistress & her Lover

Hello! My name is Katelina, and welcome to Weekend Character Interviews. Using state of the art-mumbo-jumbo author magic, Jo has temporarily bent the laws of fictional space and time to allow various literary universes to converge long enough for me to ask different characters a few questions. Since I spend a lot of time in the Amaranthine series quizzing vampires on what they’re doing, where they’re going and why, Jo thought I would be the perfect interviewer. 

Today we have another two-for – this time from none other than SassySue King’s upcoming The Devil’s Mistress. And since there are two of them, Jorick has volunteered to help me out.

the Devil's Mistress

Katelina:  Hello guys! Could you tell us a little about yourselves for the readers at home? We can start with physical descriptions if you’d like.

She:  My lover is good looking, with beautifully coifed, thick, brown hair, worn rather long, and big brown eyes; with a Johnny Depp smile.

K: You know, he DOES kind of have a Johnny Depp-ness about him…

She: When we first met I knew those eyes would take me places I never dreamed existed. And they have.

I’m a librarian

He: Her hair is big, curly and  blonde. She has a cute petite figure with just enough of everything and silky blue eyes. When we first met, sitting in the Starbucks, I knew those eyes would take me to places I always longed for but would never admit to. And they have.

I work in mid-management for the Devil collecting souls. A soul collector.  I’m not an evil demon or anything. *He glances at Jorick to confirm no offense taken* Though I am immortal.

K: That’s sweet. They described each other. *pokes Jorick* It makes me wonder how you would describe me!

Jorick: *clears throat* Yes, well…

K: So where are you from?

He: We live in a medium sized city in Southwestern Ontario, in Canada. Couples like us exist in every town in the world.

So far we’ve been brought to life through some of Sue’s stories but we’re hopeful *they both look at Sue with raised eyebrows* that our story will be published soon in an expanded version.

Sue: *leans in* I’m working on it! Stop nagging!

K: Wow. Your author actually made an appearance without needing to be tied to a chair! That’s an improvement on our author. If you could say one thing to her before she disappears what would it be?

She: Thank you for giving us life and making so many readers smile – and maybe to think.

K: That’s nice. I can’t say I have anything nice to say about mine. *ahem* Anyway, so back to you and your story.  I’m guessing that you two are a couple?

She: Yes. We are romantically involved. We love each other with all our body, heart and soul (no pun intended).

He: The most appealing thing about her is she listens to my old jokes, which are very old since I’ve had over a century to collect them. They are so old she’s never heard them. And she always laughs just like she did the first time we met. She’s smart, funny and sexy. And she never judges me.

 She: The best thing about him is his attentiveness. When we are together it’s all about me and what I want or need. It might be his guilt coming out since we are not together as much as we would like that makes him like that,  or it may be his past history, but the main thing is, he is attentive. Because of his age and all he’s seen, his stories are new and exciting.  And I’ve always loved history. He brings it to life. I’ve been helping him to regain his humanity and sense of humour and now he totally cracks me up. We see things in life from different angles and this allows each of us to see the other’s perspective. As he said his jokes are hysterical.  He is smart, funny and sexy.  He promised he would never fail me and he hasn’t. He always has my back.

And we have no secrets which makes everything easier to handle.

K: That’s really sweet. *pokes Jorick* Isn’t that really sweet?

J: *ahem* yeah. I suppose. Don’t we have questions for them?

K: Well don’t you? You’re supposed to be helping- 

J: Yes. So is this the kind of story where you’re smashing skulls and killing enemies or…

The Devil is Born

by Neetesh Gupta via flickr

He: Enemies as such no. But I do work for the Devil, ya know (grins his Johnny Depp smile).

*Katelina forgets where she is for a moment and Jorick gives her a dark look*

Some think I’m the enemy

She: His boss, Mr. D, as we call him, because calling him the Devil just sounds so… evil, and my lover is not evil, could demote him from mid-management and send him, and me as well, to the sweat shops of Hell. That’s the rumour anyway and it has all of the mid-management team and their partners paranoid.

K:  Yeah, I could see that. Though you’d think there would be rules about that sort of thing, you know? About sending perfectly decent people – er, or vampires – to hell. Jorick here is always on about the hopelessness of it all, just because he’s a vampire –

J: No, I’m not. Moving along. I imagine that dealing with his boss is the central challenge in the story?

She: Well, I have to keep his secret, and it’s not easy with my nosy girl-friends. His job frustrates me no end. I vowed I would help him regain his humanity. It’s not easy trying to live an ordinary life with him. *deep sigh* It’s a challenge alright.

He: I hate to disappoint her and don’t wish to lose her either. She would be perfectly justified to leave me and I wouldn’t blame her a bit. But I don’t want to have to face that situation. My boss  wants the job done with no distractions. He considers her a distraction, so it’s a challenge keeping both her and my boss happy. And, according to her, I seem to be having a problem understanding this ‘humanity’ thing. But I’m trying.

She: *pokes him* – Yeah you sure are ‘trying’

He: *smiles back, clasps her hand and holds it for the rest of the interview.*

K: How do the two of you evolve during the story?

She: Oddly enough he supports and encourages me to be the best I can be. This is true in both my personal and professional life.

He: She brings out the softer side in me which no one has been able to do for at least a century. This job breeds cynicism and shuts the door on emotions. With her my human side grows and I feel emotions again. I become more human.

K: Now that’s romantic. *turns to Jorick*. Isn’t that romantic?

J: *to their guests* What’s the one event that you feel has helped to shape your personality?

She: Before I took a risk with him, I always played by the rules. Taking the risk with him is the best thing I ever did. People have to take some kind of risks in life otherwise you won’t grow as a person.

He: Well I did go to Hell … that was pretty personality shaping…

starbucks sign

By mcclanahoochie Chris McClanahan

J: Fair enough.

K: Yeah, that would be pretty life changing. On a more upbeat note, what is the one thing you want the most in the whole world?

*in unison*

He: to be able to live a more complete fulfilling life with her.

She: to be able to live a more complete fulfilling life with him.

K: Oh! Did you hear that Jorick?

J: Yes. I’m right here and I’m not deaf. *to their guests* If you could say one thing to your readers, what would it be?

She: Don’t look at the details of our life look at the larger picture. See yourselves in our shoes

K: And time is running out but, before you go, I do have one perhaps delicate question. In the stories you are referred to as Lover and Mistress with no given names. Why is that?

He: The idea started as a sort of joke with inspirations from Sue’s writing class As we went along living a day to day existence, with similar problems to every couple, Sue realised she was using the characters to demonstrate the ‘every person’ experience. With the same problems, conflicts, and joys faced by the average couple.

By labeling a hero and heroine with names an image would immediately impose itself in the mind of the audience. The result might be identification with people they’ve known with those names. And it would no longer be “us”.

She: If you read very carefully, you will see that we do have names…..

K: And with that we’re out of time! A special thank you to our guests for stopping in! You can read more of them on SassySue King’s blog at

And a special thanks to SassySue for playing along!

If you’re an author and would like your character(s) to be interviewed by me, then check out this very cool page that has all the details:

Interview with Rose and Skriker

Hello! My name is Katelina, and welcome to Weekend Character Interviews. Using state of the art-mumbo-jumbo author magic, Jo has temporarily bent the laws of fictional space and time to allow various literary universes to converge long enough for me to ask different characters a few questions. Since I spend a lot of time in the Amaranthine series quizzing vampires on what they’re doing, where they’re going and why, Jo thought I would be the perfect interviewer. 

Today we have two characters – Skriker and Rose – from the novel Black Dog and Rebel Rose, and the novella Coyote Night by Danielle D. Smith.

Black Dog & Rebel Rose

Katelina: Thanks for coming guys! Wow, a two for one interview! Could you tell us a little about yourselves? Maybe describe what you look like for the readers?

SKRIKER: Thanks for askin’, baby. Pleasure to be here. What do I look like…heh-heh. 6′ 3″ tall, Billy Idol rock star platinum blond with carpet that matches the drapes, green eyes, lots of tattoos, beefcake body, devilishly handsome, hung like a horse…

K: Oh my….

ROSE: (rolling her eyes, chuckling): Modest, are we, Skrike?

SKRIKER: You know it’s true, baby. Anyway, I’m half-demon, half-human–my pops was a soul collector who fell in love with my mom when she was stripping at this joint called The Neon, and he chose to give up his infernal birthright to join her here on terra firma. I’m a hunter of all things that dwell in the dark–other demons, vamps, weres, shifters, angry ghosts– you name it, I hunt it. I also cage fight professionally underground, and do some mercenary work on the side. I live on the road most of the time, but when I’m back in my home city, I have a nice place of my own where I park my shit and keep my pet devil dog, Trash, happy and spoiled. You can find me in the pages of Black Dog and Rebel Rose and now, Coyote Night.

K: Uh.. vampire hunter.. uh.. yeah.. How about you, Rose?

ROSE: Thank you for having us. I’m 5′ 11″ tall, pin-up shapely, with long curly dark hair and parti-colored eyes (one blue, one brown). I have a trio of scars on each cheek, marking where a demon clawed me when I was five years old. I’m a Nephil, the last on Earth. My father is a warrior angel, a former megasoldier in the Holy Army. He helped cast Lucifer out when the Universe was new. My human mother, rest her soul, was an artist and the unexpected love of my father’s life. He was sent to kill her in order to earn back his place in Paradise (you can read about that in Psyche’s Gate), and ended up falling hard for her instead. As you can see, Skriker and I are total opposites, but we love each other like crazy. I live in the same city as Skrike, in a little studio in the rougher side of town. He keeps trying to get me to move in with him, but…not sure about that yet. You can find me in the same stories as Skriker here.

K: Wow. So how would you say that you evolve or change during the course of your storie(s)?

SKRIKER: Pretty profound question there. I’d have to say that I evolved the most when I met Rose while hunting vampyres in Black Dog and Rebel Rose–I used to be a crazy man-whore, see? I banged so many girls, I couldn’t count ’em. Hump ’em and leave ’em, that was my style. I could meet a girl on a street corner and she’d be going home with me by the time we reached the other side of the street. When I met Rose and found my soulmate in her, I became less selfish and more faithful than this old boy ever thought he could be. I would die for her in half a second and do anything to keep her by my side.

ROSE: Personally, in meeting Skriker, I found myself able to actually love my enemy in the truest sense of the word. My father gave me a genetic inborn hatred of demons…it was only natural. When I met Skriker, I was so fragmented about how I felt about him. I felt myself plunging headlong into love, feeling like I had found the other half of my soul, like I had known him forever…and he was a Halfling. Completely, totally forbidden under Heaven’s rules. I struggled with that like you have no idea. And when I finally accepted my feelings for him, I realized that I had found my best friend. That evolution was huge for me…I had to deny my birthright in order to be with the man I loved.

K: Wow. That’s romantic, to say the least! What first attracted you guys to one another?

 SKRIKER (rolling his eyes back deliciously): Ohhh, mama…you’re looking at her sitting right here. What did I find appealing?…

ROSE: Oh, good God. Here it comes.

SKRIKER: Let’s see here…dynamite body that puts Bettie Page to shame. Tits that don’t quit. Hair, breath, and spit that smells like night blossoms. Eyes that would knock any man flat on his ass. Did I mention her tits? Oh, okay. Rosie’s my soulmate–truly. She is the best hunter I have ever met and blows my mind every time–her knowledge of weapons, techniques, and fighting skills are second to none– and at the same time she makes me want to bundle her into my arms and keep her safe. Sex with her is, well…when they say it’s best with your One and Only, they aren’t lying. Her toughness, her warmth (which she doesn’t show to everybody), her smile…all of it just turns me into mush.

ROSE (blushing a little): Oh, Skrike, you dog! Anyway, Skriker is gorgeous, as you can see, and that was the first thing that attracted me to him. He’s such a damned bad boy punk…rock hard body, all those hot tattoos, and, yes, hung like a horse. (She giggles.) But there’s more to him than that. His rugged looks belie the fact that he’s crazy smart–he could have beaten the chess club at their top game. He can track better than any hunter I have seen. He’s well-read, clever as shit, and has a sense of humor that can put me in stitches…and that’s rare. Oh, and he’s a god in bed. A lady has to put a big check mark by that, no doubt.

K: Well, sounds like your author certainly gave you a lot of romance, did she give you a lot of enemies, too?

SKRIKER: Heh, heh. Enemies? You got all day? I’m on Hell’s shit list, honey, just like my dad was when he took off on the bosses Downstairs. All nasty things hate me: vampyres, werewolves, all that junk. ‘Cos I kill ’em, and kill ’em nasty. I say bring it ON.

Coyote Night

K: Erm.. yeah. *cough*

ROSE: My enemy? Whoever sent a pack of demons to torture and murder my mother and maim me when I was a little girl. I don’t know who he is, and haven’t found him yet…but when I do, he will hate the day he was created.

 K: Wow. So I guess you’ve probably had a lot of soul changing moments. If you had to pick the one that really shaped you, what would it be?

SKRIKER: Meeting Harry, my savior. Believe it or not, he’s a werewolf…but the nicest one you’ll ever meet. He rescued me when I was living in a sewer tunnel at thirteen. My family was killed by demons when I was eleven, see, and I ended up on the streets, alone. Harry took me in and taught me everything I know. I fight in his underground fight club and make loads of cash doing it. I ride a Harley, just like him. He helped me become who I was meant to be, and helped me balance pride in my demonic gifts with my humaity. His daughter, Gretchen, is like a sister to me. You’ll get more of that story later on–those pages are still being written–but that’s definitely what helped to shape old Skrike.

ROSE: What shaped me? My mother being horribly slain and my face being maimed. I was so innocent and pure before that. After that happened, my father took me and hid me away in the magical house of a Mother Goddess for ten years. There, he taught me how to fight as the angels do, how to sharpen my angelic gifts like a well-honed blade. I became the warrior he always knew I could be, as much as I think it pained him. I ran away when I was sixteen–got sick and tired of being hovered over–and I spent the next year traveling the world, hunting the dark horrors out there, taking occasional lovers, becoming a woman and a true soldier. My mother’s death…it shaped me in ways that I think my father never even expected.

K: I can’t even imagine! My dad died when I was like a baby, so it wasn’t really the big emotional hole, you know? But, speaking of challenges, what’s the biggest challenge you face in your newest story?

SKRIKER: In Coyote Night, I face having Rose stolen away from me by a Navajo skinwalker who wants to possess my girl as his own. NOT something you do to old Skrike. It leaves me fighting the most desperate fight of my life…trying to keep my woman safe in my arms.

ROSE: Saving a pack of children stolen by this skinwalker. These kids have endured so much spiritual and physical horror from being kidnapped and held captive by this monster…they become my ward, and I am determined to save them, no matter what the cost. I will face off with the skinwalker using the angelic powers my father gave me; whether or not my human side gets in the way will be the big question.

Japanese Tattoo

Photo by mytat_2s via flickr

SKRIKER: (wistfully): For Rosie to marry me. Hint, HINT.

ROSE: To find who killed my mother. Then we can talk marriage…if that’s possible for a Nephil and a Halfling.

K: oh, I don’t see why not. I mean, if you like marriage and all… the commitment, you know… erm, anyway, if you could say one thing to your readers, what would it be?

SKRIKER: Enjoy the ride! And many juicy kisses to the ladies…

ROSE: Write to Danielle D. Smith and tell her to stop being such a bitch…I mean, seriously. The brutality she puts us through…the heartache…

K: Aha! I know what you mean! My author is evil incarnate and yours sounds on par with her! If you could say one thing to your author what would it be?

SKRIKER: Thank you, Dani! You couldn’t have done a better job, mama! (Blows a noisy kiss)

ROSE (grumbling): You seem to enjoy torturing your characters a lot, don’t you?

K: And it looks like we’re about out of time-

SKRIKER: I think you missed some questions, baby.

K:Oh? Like what?

ROSE: No comment. No, don’t ask him…oh, Jesus…

SKRIKER: Oh, fun! Let’s see…Q1.) Skriker, have you ever seduced a nun in a church? A: Why, yes, I have. And she enjoyed that pipe I laid very much! Q2.) Skriker, if you could get Rose to do one thing in bed that she hasn’t done yet, what would that be? A: Why, I would–

ROSE (abruptly cutting in): Okay, this interview is over! Thank you for your hospitality.

K: *Blinking* Um.. yeah, and thank you. *shakes head*. Yeah, as I was saying, thanks to Skriker and Rose for stopping in. you can find them in Black Dog and Rebel Rose, and the novella Coyote Night by Danielle D. Smith.

 And a special thanks to Danielle D. Smith for playing along!

Bio: Danielle D. Smith is a traditionally published author of Paranormal, Horror, and Erotica tales for adult readers who like their stories “outside the mainstream”. Her fourth book, the novella Coyote Night, will be released this summer by Solstice Publishing. Purchase her book Black Dog and Rebel Rose HERE to read the story of Skriker and Rose’s chance meeting. Visit the author online at


If you’re an author and would like your character(s) to be interviewed by me, then check out this very cool page that has all the details:

Interview with Angel Collins

Hello! My name is Katelina, and welcome to Weekend Character Interviews. Using state of the art-mumbo-jumbo author magic, Jo has temporarily bent the laws of fictional space and time to allow various literary universes to converge long enough for me to ask different characters a few questions. Since I spend a lot of time in the Amaranthine series quizzing vampires on what they’re doing, where they’re going and why, Jo thought I would be the perfect interviewer. 

Today we have Angela Collins – another character from Mark Mackey.

Maureen: A Vampire Tale

Katelina: hello Angela! Can you tell us a little about yourself?

Angela:  No problem. I’m Angela Collins, full blooded Vampire.

K: Aha! I thought I recognized those fangs! You’re not from Maine, by any chance, are you? Or Iowa?

A: I’m a resident of New York city.

K: Oh. We haven’t been there, yet. We always end up in out of the way places. So, which book are you in?

A: I grace the pages of Maureen: a vampire, and possibly my own future story/series.

K: That would be cool to get your own series! Especially if they named it after you!

*Verchiel enters*

Verchiel: Yes! Many of us side characters deserve our own series! I can think of one off the top of my head. Some of us need more page time, you know?

K: *to Verchiel* No, you don’t.

A: I do. Honestly, I don’t feel I’ve been given enough time in Maureen to evolve.

K: Well, I can see how that would be tough. But if you don’t have time to evolve then I guess you probably don’t have a host of enemies chasing you-

A: Enemies? Yeah, I do. Those pathetic Guzzers win that title, hands down.

K: Oh. Well, then do you get some romance?

A: I once was in a relationship, but he was killed on our very first date by a pack of Guzzers, who my sometime caretaker Miriam Kingston later mauled to death in her guise of a werewolf.

pooling blood

by Jo Naylor

V: So, you’re single? *Gives her a charming, fanged grin*

K: Oh for crying out loud! First Loren and now you! *to Maureen* Just ignore him. So… where were we? Oh, yeah. So what would you say is the biggest challenge you face in the story?

A: Oh, clearly being asked to turn my close friend Heather Rachel Tanners into a vampire.

K: Yeah, I could see that. It’s such a commitment, isn’t it? And being a vampire means a whole host of new problems – or wait. I guess in some universes it doesn’t. I mean, you drink blood, right?

A: Yes, of course.

K: Not human blood?

M: Yes, I do, actually.

V: It is tastier.

K: Um. *tugs at collar* What about sunlight? You don’t… sparkle, do you?

A: No, sunlight can kill me.

K: Oh, okay. Then you know what I mean about all the challenges! But I guess we’re running short on time so if you could say one thing to your author, what would it be?

A: Write that short story which has existed as an idea since May 2011 (the one about my date being killed).

New York by Night

by Marie P. via Flickr

A: Come pay me a visit in New York, and check out Maureen to read about what a fantastic creature of the night I am.

K: And since we’re almost out of time, last question; What is it that you want the most in the whole world?

A: To see what it’s like to live as a living, breathing human being.

K: And we’re outta time! I do want to say a big fat “SEE!” to Verchiel, here, who is of the opinion that vampires are superior.

V: They are.

Jorick *appears and glares at Verchile* What is HE doing?

K: Just leaving. A big thank you to Angela for stopping by. Remember you can find her in Maureen: A Vampire’s Tale by Mark Mackey.

And a special thanks to Mark Mackey for playing along!


If you’re an author and would like your character(s) to be interviewed by me, then check out this very cool page that has all the details:

Interview with Kristen Flemings

Hello! My name is Katelina, and welcome to Weekend Character Interviews. Using state of the art-mumbo-jumbo author magic, Jo has temporarily bent the laws of fictional space and time to allow various literary universes to converge long enough for me to ask different characters a few questions. Since I spend a lot of time in the Amaranthine series quizzing vampires on what they’re doing, where they’re going and why, Jo thought I would be the perfect interviewer. 

Today we have Kristen Flemings from the mind of Mark Mackey.


Kristen Flemings: Sure! I’m the most fabulous 16 year old bar none, super-hot blond, formerly of Blue Winter, Connecticut, now Mason Nevada. Cheerleader, student newspaper editor-in-chief and writer.

KM: Wow, that’s a heck of a description! So which books are you from exactly?

KF: So far I inhabit Genesis, Zombies of the Desert, Swan Song, and the Comet: an Alison Duncan Tale and other stories.

KM: Holy cow, that’s a lot. I wish my author wrote that much! So what’s it like being a fabulous teenager?

KF:  At first, I simply wanted to live an ordinary life, but as the story progressed, I realized, hey, I’m supposed to be somewhat of a sidekick to Elizabeth Duncan.

KM: I bet you have some enemies, at school, at least.

KF: Actually, yes. My older sister Jennifer, even before she became a flesh loving zombie, she didn’t seem to like me very much, and I put the blame on her pathetic excuses for friends, Cassidy Edgemore and Sandra “Sandy” Cashers.

KM: Whoa! So there are real zombies? I thought that was just a metaphor or something!

KF: Nope! You can’t get any more real than having your sister a flesh eating zombie!

zombies of the desert

KF: Problems? Ha-ha, yeah, I can chalk mu biggest up to one word, surviving.

KM: Wow. So what’s the worst thing that happens to you?

KF: Simple, nearly getting devoured by my older sister Jennifer. It toughened me up a bit.

KM: Holy crap! Well, you’ve at least got a lot of boys, right?

KF: Ha-ha, I wish I was involved in a romance.

KM: Wow. I think your author is meaner than mine. Seriously! Do you ever wonder what your life would have been like if you hadn’t been dropped into all o fthis?

KF: You mean if I hadn’t ended up in Genesis? (That’s one of the books!) probably I’d have gotten cursed along with poor Amanda and Gillian, and there would have been three of use going to remove the curses instead.

KM: Who’s Amanda?

KF: Amanda Hansen, she’s my best friend, at my side. Sorry Elizabeth, Amanda’s always going to be my best friend.

KM: At least your author gave you a friend! Wow-

Loren, a teen vampire from the Amaranthine series, suddenly appears. (It is of note that though he’s a vampire and a teen he does not sparkle.)

Loren: Hey, what’s up? I see you’re doing your, erm, interviews?

KM: Hello, Loren. Do you want something?

L: I was just thinkin’, you know, Old J gets to help out all the time so maybe it was my turn. *Offers Kristen a grin that is meant to be friendly*.

KM: Yeah, I know what you’re doing. Out! This is not a dating service! Find girls elsewhere!

L: Oh come one! She’s a single cheerleader! I mean, uh, I never meant… erm… I mean, I have a question!

KM: Fine! What? And it better be a good one!

Books (118 / 365)

photo by Casey Fleser via flickr

KF: a tie between Hazelwood V. Kuhlmeier and the School Newspaper Censorship Debate by Tracy A. Philips, and School Newspaper Adviser’s Survival Guide by Patricia Osborn.

KM: See? She’s outta your league, Loren. Now scat.

L: But I have another question!

KM: “What are you doing next Tuesday?” is not an interview question! Besides, we’re running out of time. *turns back to Kristen* If you could say one thing to your author, what would it be?

KF: Hey Mark, make an entire series starring me.

KM: Fair enough. And if you could say one thing to your readers?

KF: Buy Genesis and Zombies of the Desert, read all about how much of a fantastic person I am.

KM: And with that it seems we’re out of time! A special thank you to Kristen Flemings for stopping by and – hey! Loren! What did I say? Leave the guests alone!

Remember you can find her in Genesis, Zombies of the Desert, Swan Song, and the Comet: an Alison Duncan Tale and other stories by Mark Mackey

(Loren! I said scram!)

And a special thanks to Mark Mackey for playing along!


If you’re an author and would like your character(s) to be interviewed by me, then check out this very cool page that has all the details:

Interview with Dakota

Hello! My name is Katelina, and welcome to Weekend Character Interviews. Using state of the art-mumbo-jumbo author magic, Jo has temporarily bent the laws of fictional space and time to allow various literary universes to converge long enough for me to ask different characters a few questions. Since I spend a lot of time in the Amaranthine series quizzing vampires on what they’re doing, where they’re going and why, Jo thought I would be the perfect interviewer. 

Today we have Dakota from the Emily Dahill, CID Part by Lindsay Downs! You might remember that we had Gerri and her cat recently? Well, I did say we should have a dog to make things even and guess what?

We do!

Even cooler, the laws of literary universes have been further bent so we can have a conversation with Dakota! Let’s give a big welcome to our furry visitor!

Emily Dahill, CID Part 1

Katelina: Welcome Dakota! Could you tell us a little about yourself?

Dakota: It is just so cool being here and away, even for a little while, from work and mom. There’s really not all that much to tell. You know, everyone thinks us collies all look alike. In other words those silly humans think of me as that one from TV and the movies…oh what’s her name. (deep in thought he scratches his muzzle with a hind paw) Oh yeah, Lassie. Well, let me tell you we’re as different as you people. I’m what’s called a tri-color, meaning I have black, tan, or as I like to call it sable. Sounds classier, don’t you think and white. All three are distinctive, as you can see. (Dakota chuckles as he pirouettes to show off his coloration). Mom, that’s Emily, says I have the most expressive deep brown eyes she’s ever seen.

K: You do have very pretty eyes. –

Jorick (appears) Now who has pretty eyes? If it’s another one of those fantasy heroes-

K: *sarcastically* It’s a dog, Jorick. A dog. See?

Jorick: Oh, right. Is it house trained?

*Dakota and Katelina give him a disdainful look*

K: Moving on. I’m guessing you live with Emily?

D: She and I share a really nice log house sort of buried in the woods. We even have a family of wolves that live nearby. Sometimes I’ll sneak some table scraps to take them so their mother, when she has trouble getting out to hunt, can feed the kits.

K: That sounds nice! I wouldn’t mind a trip out to the woods for a few weeks – provided there’s a TV. Though I guess TV probably isn’t a priority for you, huh?

D: Don’t forget, I’m a collie and to me the important things in life are food, sleep, play, food, play, oh did I mention sleep and food and helping to catch bad guys.

K: You mention bad guys. Do you have any enemies?

D: Not so much me but mom have a nemesis. From what I’ve been able to understand mom doesn’t know the guy’s name. Only that he has brown hair, so that’s how we refer to him as ‘the brown-haired man’. The best way to find out about this person and there’s no guarantee the name used is even his real one is to read the first story Final Mission. This happened before Emily and I hooked up. But I did have a chance meeting with the bum in the story A Body in the Snow. That’s where I first caught his scent. And let me tell you, he had a stink that could raise the dead. I knew he to be a danger mostly to mom so I quickly developed a special deep throat growl when I get a whiff of him. It’s happened since that story was first told. You can learn more about him and me in A Body in the Attic where he reappears.

As far as the how’s and why’s he became the enemy, I don’t think even mom knows.

K: Is he going to be back for future stories?

D: I don’t know. I’ve heard that Emily is talking to someone about other stories but don’t really know anything about that.

a collie in profile.jpg

photo by Joleene Naylor

D: Right! I’m sweet, adorable, loveable, and a good partner, always looking after her back. Oh, did I mention sexy as hell. All the girls just love me. Must be my killer smile. (He smiled at me to show off that smile). Seen better.

K: Ha ha! So if all the girls love you, does that mean you have a little Collie sweetheart somewhere?

D: Not. I got snipped as a puppy.

K: Ouch! You’re author sounds like a killer – well, a snipper. *heh-heh* If you could say one thing to her, what would it be?

D: Lindsay, “Stop giving mom all the good scenes.”

K: Sounds like a fair enough request. And if you could say something to your readers?

D: Woof, woof. If you want to laugh and cry tears of joy then Emily Dahill, CID Part 1 is the book for you. And you’ll love what I did to that poor soldier’s rifle.

K: Now I’m curious! Though I think my worthless author knows… not that she’ll make an appearance.

Jorick: She never bothers.


not quite a t-bone....

D: You mean beside getting a one inch thick t-bones steak medium-rare every night for supper. I guess keeping mom safe really would be at the top of the list. Okay, equal to the steak.

Before I go, I have a question for your friend *eyes Jorick*. Well, you see mom wants me to be a werecollie for Halloween. Now, how anemic is that. What I’d love to know is where did you get those fantastic fangs? Boy, with a set of chompers like those hanging out of my mouth I’d make a super vampire collie. See, I could walk around on my hind legs (he hops up and walks around the room). Now that would really scare the people. So, my question, is where did you buy them and do you think they’d have a pair in my size?

K: You know, this brings up an interesting question-

J: Try Fangs R Us. I hear they have quite a collection.

K: Fangs R Us? You just made that up!

J: And with that we’re out of time!

K: Hey! That’s my line! A big thank you to Dakota for giving us all a dog’s eye view of his world. (heh-heh) You can find more of him in the Emily Dahill, CID Part by Lindsay Downs.


Astraea Press:

Barnes & Noble-


And to request an autograph on your Kindle:


And a special thanks to Lindsay Downs for playing along!

If you’re an author and would like your character(s) to be interviewed by me, then check out this very cool page that has all the details:

Who is Your Audience?

My 101 Tips for Traveling with a Vampire is still free on Amazon. I’ve given away over 11,000 copies of it and though I know those numbers probably aren’t much in the scheme of “real” authors, it’s mind boggling to me. Up to now I’ve only ever managed to give away and/or sell 437 through Smashwords and all of its markets (Barnes & Noble, Kobo, etc). I guess this shows the importance of being on Amazon, too. That’s not to say that I don’t think Smashwords will catch up to those kind of numbers or that people can’t do fantastically well there, I just think that if you do minimum advertising (like I do) it makes sense to have the book in as many places as possible so  more people are likely to stumble on it.

Of course, with free has come the bad reviews, but they’re mixed with good ones, so not too big of a deal. The bad ones mainly seem to be from people who expected different genres (One lady has reviewed only romance novels besides that book) or else expected it to be longer, despite the fact that the description says it is exactly what the title implies.  No fault to them, though. They just didn’t like it. Not everyone can. But then, I’m not really writing for everyone, anyway.

Which leads me to a point – not “my point”. “My point” is right on top of my head, which makes wearing stocking caps hard – hahahahaha! Get it? See, now not everyone thought that was funny. But, I digress.  The point is that I’m not writing for everyone, I’m writing for “my audience” and, as Ruth pointed out in a post on SPAL earlier this month, that’s the most important thing. I guess I’m just lucky in the fact that “my audience” is probably ten eleven people.  So long as they like it, then I’m happy because they’re the ones I have in mind as I’m writing or editing.

Does that make me short sighted?

And who exactly is this audience of ten eleven people?

Without naming names, I will say that most (though not all) of them like anime. They also generally find my jokes funny, or at least pretend to.  And the female portion of said audience seems to like pretty boys. They also tend to like the alpha-get -your-hands-dirty-in-the-blood-of-your-enemies kinda guys.  It’s even better if they can be that AND pretty at the same time. Oh, and men who take care of their women (much to the chagrin of some of the more radical women’s rights kind of readers). I firmly believe that women can do anything they want to and are capable of the same things as men, but frankly, why should they spend their time doing it all if they don’t have to? If the guy wants to take out the trash – or protect the damsel in distress from a horde of blood thirsty killers – I don’t see how that diminishes her as a person. Let him handle some of it. We don’t have to do it all just because we can. It’s not a contest.

Also, my target audience of ten eleven people like some gore or violence in between their romantic moments, seem to enjoy stretches of conversation as well as the odd overly dramatic setting (the old warehouse I compared to a bloody eyed monster in book 1 springs instantly to mind) and they like vampires that don’t sparkle.

Frankly, they sound like a fun group. No wonder I’m writing for them!

So here’s a big thank you to my audience, I believe you all know who you are.  And also a thank you to those of you who are in my audience without my realizing it. After all, if you’d asked me last year I’d have told you my audience was only about five people, so there’s plenty of room for growth.  Heck, I’ll even say thanks to those people who aren’t in my audience at all and left scathing reviews on Amazon.  Some of those reviews are so bad they’re good. And isn’t that what we’re all striving for?

You can check out 101 Tips for Traveling with a Vampire on Amazon and Smashwords

(edited per the comments below – thanks Juli!)

  • Tales of the Executioners

    Short stories from the world of Amaranthine; a universe of blood and darkness where vampires don't sparkle and night is eternal. Each is about a member of the Executioners squad; the special vampire "police" force. Members both past and present share stories of assignments, origins, and more.

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    Joleene Naylor

    An independent author, freelance artist, and photographer for fun who loves anime, music, and writing. Check out my vampire series Amaranthine at or drop me a line at

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