Monday, December 23, 2013

Do You Believe in Ghosts? Guest blog with Stephanie Andrassy

Do You Believe in Santa Ghosts?

Happy holidays, everyone!  Thanks for joining me here at Fang-tastic Books while I sit down to take a break from the hustle and bustle this time of year brings.  I’m enjoying a large mug of hot coffee and some freshly-baked gingerbread men; still warm from their time in the oven.  I wish I could share - these are really good!

There are only two more sleeps!!!  My munchkins are excitedly counting down the hours until that jolly dude dressed in red magically appears at the base of their tree to sprinkle pretty packages full of surprises and fill their stockings with chocolates and goodies.  How’s the energy in your house?  As crazy as mine with last minute preparations?

It’s interesting what we’ll tell our children and what we won’t.  I’ve vowed to never tell my children that Santa wasn’t real - no matter how old they get.  The magic, mystery, fun, and meaning are all very much real and alive to me, and many parents happily and willingly encourage those same beliefs.  At the same time, most parents probably wouldn’t encourage a belief in ghosts in the same way; especially when children are so prone to nightmares and worries about what’s lurking in their closets or under their beds.  In my household, we didn’t have much of a choice.

My munchkins have always had an awareness of the possibility of ghosts and spirits.  When my twins (son and daughter) were very small - around two years old - we lived in an older house with the ghost of an elderly man.  We’d be playing in the back yard and one of them would point to something up by the house and say, “Man!  Man!”  Of course, I couldn’t see anyone, but they were convinced they were seeing a man and frustrated that I didn’t see him, too.

My son and daughter shared a room at that time and had just recently graduated to “big kid beds”.  I walked into their room one day and found all of my son’s stuffed animals neatly and perfectly lined up along the headboard of his bed - between the headboard and the wall.  I was certain my husband was playing tricks (knowing we had this ghost lurking about), but he swore he hadn’t done it, and there was no way either one of my uncoordinated toddlers could have managed such a perfect display.  (At least a few of them would have been stuffed in there upside down or sideways!)

And then I saw him.  I woke up in the middle of the night and glanced across the room, and there he was - standing in the doorway.  He wasn’t looking directly at me, but you know I was sure as heck examining him in the darkness; wondering if I was actually seeing what I was seeing.  And you’d think I’d start screaming or pounding on my husband to wake him, but I didn’t.  I just wasn’t afraid - there wasn’t anything threatening about him at all.  Dressed in a three-piece suit complete with a gold chain leading to a pocket watch in his vest pocket, and wearing an unbuttoned overcoat, dress hat, and dress shoes, he just stared quietly, and a little sadly, into the room.  He reminded me of a banker from the 1920’s, and he seemed very, very old.  He didn’t move and I went back to sleep.  Yes - my “fear meter” was so low that I decided to go back to sleep while Mr. Ghost/Spirit was standing in my bedroom doorway!

I don’t know who he was and I’ll probably never sort that out in this lifetime.  I did investigate a whole boatload of possibilities to no avail - I couldn’t match his description with anyone related to us or the house.  We moved about a year or so later (I was sad to leave - that house always felt so welcoming), and as the kids didn’t appear to see him anymore, I don’t think our friend followed.  But we have experienced some other “odd” things over the years (and in different houses) - electric toothbrushes that suddenly turn on, the television suddenly changing channels, the jar candle suddenly sliding off the top of the television and onto the floor...  I once heard the sound of a large group of people socializing while I was in the bathroom with the ceiling fan running.  The voices were so clear; I actually went to the windows to see if there was a party happening outside!

I’ve also been on the receiving end of a handful of psychic readings over the years.  I’ll admit that the information has never been 100% meaningful, but when it is a hit (and there have been many of those) - it has been a direct, covered-in-goose-bumps hit.  Let me give you a recent example. 

Not long ago, I was wracking my brains trying to remember a name I’d loved as a teenager that I wanted to use for a character in Rocks Don’t Cry (the second book in the Home Series - Just Live, Juliette! being the first).  A couple of days into this exercise, I had an email exchange with a friend on the other side of the world who happens to have some psychic ability.  She didn’t know I was trying to remember a name, but innocently offered in one of her notes that she had a spirit standing next to her, rubbing her hair (head), and that her name was Anika.  I nearly fell off my chair!  That was the name!

I know there are those who are quite skeptical or firm non-believers.  In the absence of scientific evidence proving the existence of the afterlife, spirits, ghosts, etc., then the idea must be false.  (There’s never a scientist around to document the event when my television channels suddenly change.)  I think it’s quite healthy to have a dose of skepticism to protect oneself from scam artists and cult inductions, but with my first-hand experiences, I can’t help but stop and wonder about the possibilities.  Just Live, Juliette! and the Home Series is a chance to do just that - romance set within a landscape of possibilities - the parallel world of the afterlife.  And with my fascination about the topic, I’m sure you can imagine how much fun I’m having writing this series!  I hope you find the read as enjoyable.

So who will be visiting you over the holidays - the Spirit/Ghost of Christmas Past or just the jolly old elf, St. Nick?  Best wishes for 2014!


(The White Peacock, a short story and the beginning of this journey, is available for free at major ebook retailers.  Just Live, Juliette! is the first book in the Home Series and includes The White Peacock.  The second book, Rocks Don’t Cry, was released in October 2013.  At least four books are planned for this series with the third expected to be released in 2014.)

Just Live, Juliette!
The Home Series
Book 1
Stephanie Andrassy

Genre:Paranormal Romance

Date of Publication: May 28, 2013
ISBN: 9780991715718

Number of pages: 591

Word Count: 214,500

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Book Description:

You never know what the morning after has in store for you, especially after drinks at a bar, a perfect man, and a night of the best sex you have ever experienced. Rather than dancing through a field of daisies, Juliette may be pushing them up instead. She awakes to a world where everything is familiar and nothing is what it appears to be; where the key to endless love is learning to just live.

This is the first book in the Home series; a journey which began with the short story, "The White Peacock", included for your convenience and reading pleasure.

The White Peacock, is available from Smashwords and all major ebook retailers.  It is included at the beginning of Just Live, Juliette!, but if you like to collect cover art, feel free to download it as a separate file from Smashwords or your favorite ebook retailer.

"Juliette was the first to arrive for girl's night out at The White Peacock; a dull bar promising a lack of men on the prowl. She attracted many, yet felt they just weren't worth meeting, and after her last two disastrous dating efforts, a quiet bar suited her just fine. But in life, change is the only certainty. It is inevitable, in fact, and in the blink of an eye, her life would change forever."

No coupon required - **Always Free**

About the Author:

Stephanie Andrassy is the coffeeholic author of Noble Lies, a fantasy romance, as well as the paranormal romance Home series.  Beginning with the free short story, The White Peacock, the journey within this supernatural series continues in Just Live, Juliette! (Home Series #1) and Rocks Don’t Cry (Home Series #2), and will be joined by at least two further books.

She holds a B.A. from the University of Guelph and presently resides in southern Ontario, Canada with her family.  An avid reader of romance, fantasy, drama, women's literature, suspense, and non-fiction; she’s been writing for her own personal pleasure since she was a child - a life-long love affair with the written word.

Readers are anticipating further new releases in 2014, including a sequel to Noble Lies and the next book in The Home Series.



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bn100 said...

Interesting blurb

Stephanie Andrassy said...

Thanks bn100! And thank you, Roxanne, for having me on your site today and for all your hard work in organizing the virtual tour of Just Live, Juliette! All my best! xoxo