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  • Writer's pictureVeronica Cline Barton

Veronica’s #WritersDiary,When #Life Gives You Lemons…

Make lemon drops! I have a feeling whoever coined the phrase ‘when life gives you lemons…’  must have had a major 2020 precognition, LOL. Actually, other than not being able to travel; visit with friends and family; covering your face with masks; scouring the planet for TP/wipes/hand sanitizer;  and eating your fav restaurant cuisine in the parking lot, it hasn’t been that bad of a year (major side-eye 2020)…I’ve learned so much these past few months, particularly in the conspiracy theory arena (I get my daily updates from a certain loved one each morning 🙂 ). Aliens, 5G, weaponized/intelligent viruses (and I won’t even mention the vaccines…), deep states, Q–I couldn’t have imagined these apocalyptic plot twisters if my life depended on it, EEK! I think I’ll give Elon Musk a call to see if there’s any seats available on the next flight to Mars. Matt Damon aka Mark Whatley figured out how to grow potatoes there–so vodka is theoretically not out of the realm of possibilities…#Upside #LemonDrops 🙂

The feature pic today and the ones above⇑ are from the beautiful Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas. I love their conservatory with all the gorgeous flora and fauna exhibits. It was just a year ago this month that we were enjoying the lovely sites and cuisines in some of our favorite Sin City haunts for our anniversary. We’ve been getting loads of adverts trying to entice us to return, but we’re still deciding whether to go or not (how will they keep my penny slot machines sanitized–anyone, anyone?). TBD, so for now–enjoy the pictures, we’ll be back there one day, I’d bet on it! It’s Wednesday, time for #DearDiary:

Hearth Fires, what inspired us to write…

Thought I’d share the beautiful book trailer Bibiana Krall designed for our upcoming release once again (I love the scenes for each story and the music!). Last week I shared the scary tale blurbs with you. I thought this week I’d give you a few inspirational tidbits of what inspired Bibiana and me for each of the stories. We’re very excited about our collection–here’s why:

Enjoy an eclectic, and imaginative collection of six, original, short stories that share one central theme, the mysterious Ouija board with a nod to the troubled spirits that guide The Oracle. Take a journey through the Deep South, then head to the American Northeast, Pacific Northwest and end your reading adventure with a flight on a magical witches broom across the glimmering pond.

Halloween can’t come soon enough! Indulge your senses and drift over to the spooky side with Hearth Fires. If you adore “Night Gallery” “Dark Shadows” “Hocus Pocus” and anything Poe, Jackson or DuMaurier, this collection was written especially for you.

Veronica’s Notes: CULINARY COTERIE brings the Southern gift of gab and delicious recipes to life for me in this Swamp Thing meets Arsenic and Old Lace tale. I loved traveling to New Orleans and nearby towns, sampling the unique flavorings in their foods, there’s nothing better. Mouthwatering treats will never be the same—sometimes it’s better not to know all the ingredients, LOL!

Bibiana’s Notes:  THE WINDOW is a story that’s been rolling around in my head for quite some time. Inequality and injustice is nothing new, nor is mistreatment, murder and violence against women… more often than not it is perpetrated by people we all know in our communities or who are held in high regard due to family influence, and generational money. It was a tough story to write, as there is a lot more truth than fiction in that one. We must do all we can to change this deadly narrative for the next generation.

Veronica’s Notes: VINTAGE VIBRATIONS takes me on a hunt for the bizarre. I love shopping in second hand stores, hoping to find that one special treasure. I think about the people who owned the items before—what was their life like? Do the items carry bits and pieces of the past, transitioning their energy and vibes to the next owner? Be careful what you wish for…

Bibiana’s Notes: DARK WATCHERS is a riff on an urban legend in the Santa Lucia Mountain Range. I was in San Jose, California with my husband in March of 2020 right before the world lockdown for Covid-19 and saw something strange on a mountain ridge as we drove south towards San Luis Obispo. Then I saw something else when we were on Highway One later that day near the mouth of the Big Sur River where it joins the Pacific. I tried my best to understand what it was. Supernatural? Weather related? Who knows? What I found fascinating is that there are hundreds of stories all over the Internet that speaks of this spectral phenomenon in the fog. Some of them date back as far as two thousand years ago. Modern adventurers still experience something they cannot explain when they hike alone in the wilderness of Big Sur.

Veronica’s Notes: BOARD WHISPERERS I had it on good authority not to have a Ouija board in the house—some doors are better left unopened. While writing this story, I had water dripping down from a light fixture and a Bluetooth transmission of loud music emanate mysteriously from an electronic fireplace. Weird—yes! Unexpected—yes! And the mystery is, I still don’t know what happened…

Bibiana’s Notes: LA FEE VERT is a dark parable talking about the price of fame, the idea that when we accomplish what might be considered as success to others… where does that leave us and is there automatically another level to attain? Do we all have a drop of madness in us when we imagine and move to another plane to tap into the most creative part of ourselves? Or are we destined to always question where this “green fairy” will take us next?

go away reading

Chilling twists and turns this week from the writers of Twitter…

Author Julie Kusma, Stuck That Way and Other Quandaries, 5 STARS

Author Kusma takes us on a journey of the macabre with the short story collection in Stuck That Way and Other Quandaries. Each story leaves the reader with chills and goosebumps as the tales unwind, as you timidly turn page after page to see how the dark encounters will turn out…

Stuck That Way: In a parallel universe, Dad is teaching his son a few new tricks that are not Mommy approved…

Something Lurking: An evening dog walk in the backyard turns into a gruesome encounter…

By Induction: Beware of the not so sweet revenge…

That’s Creepy, Santa!: Will mother-in-laws ever learn???

Relevant Evidence: Gruesome monsters in reality surround us, hunting the innocents…

Devilish Game: Family feuds run deep with the helping hoof of Pan…

These tales are told with descriptors that will sweep you into the dark world of the unknowns, haunting you with their sometimes horrifying, bizarre, dark humor twists and turns. Author Kusma is a master storyteller of the macabre! A chilling read, highly recommended!

Next up in the #reading queue:

Bookem banner with pics

Tune in at 1:45pm EDT on the #BOOKEM YouTube channel!

Bibiana is on deck this week! Stop on by and give us a listen!

Bookem 2

My #website is coming!

Just wanted to give you a heads up–things are going to change just a bit in the next few weeks. I’ll still be posting my weekly blog post every Wednesday morning–but, it will be from my new website that I’ll be launching soon! I’m so excited to have my own domain with everything in one spot. I’m once again utilizing the technical skills of multi-talented creative, writer, technical guru Bibiana Krall. Stay tuned for the release, I can’t wait for you to see it!

Welcome to my world. Enjoy the rest of your #week and #weekend friends!

Crowns and Kisses,


P.S. Oh baby, you can pick up a copy of my latest book, Double Trouble, here: Gemma and Rikkhe approve 🙂


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