Friday, June 14, 2013


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Welcome to my stop on the SCP Paranormal Blog Hop! I write in many genres, but mainly paranormal with an emphasis on my favorite vampires. I love writing about them so much, I have three distinct series. I have also co-authored a series with my husband, Mike, telling the story of Drake Martin and Kady Hartley. He’s a private investigator who has the special talent of shifting into a Yorkshire terrier. Yep, that was a fun story to write that Mike and I wrote a sequel. We’re planning the third one now.
To add to the fun of the day, I’m reposting a fun fact about vampire lore blog I did months ago. I love sharing interesting facts about my favorite paranormal characters. I’ll be giving away a $10 GC to Secret Cravings Publishing to one lucky random commenter. All you have to do is give me an interesting “fact” about vampires that I haven’t listed below. Winner will be drawn on Monday, June 17th by
I’m also giving a sneak peek excerpt from my most recent release, A Vampire’s Bite of Flesh, Episode 3 of the Misadventures of Dick Grewcock. Enjoy!
Good luck and have fun this weekend. Oh, don’t forget to link back to other participating SCP authors!


CLOCKS:  According to European folklore, a person’s house can be protected from a vampire attack by stopping the clocks at the time of death. Stopping a clock is said to put the corpse into a sort of suspended animation, preventing demonic forces from entering the body until it is ready for burial and therefore not becoming a vampire.

COUNTING:  In Chinese narratives about vampires, they state that if a vampire comes across a sack of rice it will have to stop and count all the grains. These are similar myths recorded on the Indian continent and even in South America. The vampire isn’t repelled or pierced by the objects, rather the creature is compelled to eat them or count them one at a time, thereby slowing them down and away from the living. (I used a variation of this in the Born Vampire series. The vampires have OCD, I explained.)

INCENSE:  Composed of grains of resins and spices that are burned or sprinkled on lighted charcoal to create a sweet or pungent odor, incense has been used in many religions over the centuries to drive out evil entities from a person or a place. In fighting vampires, it ranks alongside garlic as a preventative measure and as a way to counteract the stench of death. In some regions of Romania, it was often pushed into the ears, eyes, and nostrils of a corpse to stop an evil spirit from entering and reanimating the body.
Folklore, not of the fictional types created today which have variations ~

The ability to cause
impotence ~ This surely wouldn’t work with any of my vampires.

The ability to cause
plagues, epidemics, crop failures and the deaths of livestock.

Methods of protection differ from region to region and country to country, but some of the most common means of securing safety are listed below:

Thorns:  Considered to be magical barriers against vampires and witches.

Calling three times:  In Romanian lore it was believed that one should never answer someone unless they call three times, because it was said that vampires can only ask a question twice. If someone answers a vampire, the vampire has the power to kill them.  (This sounds like a “Beetlejuice” variation!)

Lemon: In Saxony in Germany, a lemon was placed in the mouth of suspected vampires.

Bread and cheese:  Among some Slavic Gypsies, offerings of bread and cheese were made to appease vampires. In Transylvania wine was buried with bodies for the same purpose.

Holly, hawthorn, and wild rose are all said to harm vampires.

SNEEZING:  There are numerous widespread folk beliefs that the soul temporarily leaves the body through the mouth during a sneeze and is therefore vulnerable to the forces of evil. Sneezing creates an opportunity for evil entities to enter the body through the mouth and take possession of it. In the folklore of Romania, sneezing can attract or empower a vampire unless a blessing is given immediately after.
SOCK:  According the lore of the Gypsies from Eastern Europe, the left sock of a vampire can be used to drive it away or even kill it. Vampire hunters steal the sock from the grave, fill it with rocks, and throw it outside the village, preferably into a river or running water. The vampire will then wake up, miss its sock, and start searching for it, even if that means entering the water and drowning in an attempt to retrieve it. Like the use of seeds and grain to distract the vampire into counting for centuries, this is based on the widespread belief that vampires are obsessive creatures. (Why the hunters just didn’t stake the vampire instead of stealing its sock just doesn’t make sense, but this is all myth, right?)

VISION:  The eyes of vampires are often described as hellish and hypnotic and able to paralyze victims. They may also turn blood red when the vampire begins to feed. The superb night vision of vampires isn’t explained or even mentioned in folklore but it is implied, as generally the vampire of folklore is a nocturnal creature. (My vampires’ eyes turn red not when they want to feed, but when their sexually aroused.)

And last, but not least, is this one!

WATERMELONS:  Among the Muslim Gypsies of Yugoslavia, watermelons like pumpkins, could become vampires, especially if they had teeth and had been kept for more than ten days or for too long after Christmas. Stained with drops of blood, these not very deadly or threatening vampires roll around making growling sounds, for no other reason than to irritate the living. (Yep, fanged watermelons rolling around the ground certainly would irritate me!)

All these interesting facts are from “The Element Encyclopedia of Vampires” by Theresa Cheung and I hope you have enjoyed learning a few new things about vampire folklore, myths and legends.

BLURB from A Vampire’s Bite of Flesh:

Dick Grewcock is a vampire working full-time as a computer consultant for Vampires ‘R Us. He had everything he wanted—a pretty girlfriend and a great job—or so he thought. A hurricane blows through town a week before the Fourth of July making a real mess, including riling the sugar craving mush-brain humans. Operation Zombie Takedown begins at Fang Shui, the local vampire bar, to get the infestation under control. Dick’s existence was about to change—again.

Noelle St. Nicholas is Dick’s girlfriend, but four months ago she met with an unfortunate accident and ended up in a cryopreservation chamber at a high security laboratory. She’s revived and Dick isn’t sure she’ll forgive him for what he did.

Dick battles zombies with fireworks exploding and learns what it means to be the vampire he was meant to be, but at what price to losing what’s left of his humanity?


Dick blinked a few times, adjusting his eyes to the brighter light and to gain his bearings. The stench of sweat and cigarette smoke filled his nostrils and every breath he took burned his lungs. God, he knew having the planning meeting here would be a mistake. Why not the VRU offices? At least they were private and smoke-free. But, no, that would have been too easy. Vlad insisted on checking out his latest acquisition, and as he put it, the bar was a good place to keep an eye on others in his coven. Killing two birds, yada, yada, yada.
Dancers scantily-clad in G-strings and sequined pasties climbed, turned and twisted on the brass poles bolted on the five mini-stages scattered around the room. Gyrating couples, males, females and others—Dick couldn’t tell what they were—writhed in a sea of limbs, music, and flashing multi-colored lights. He glanced around, disoriented from the pounding in his head. Where the fuck was the bar? And where was his partner?
Urgh! A partner. Another vamp. A pain in the ass vamp cohort his sire insisted on him having until the zombie infestation was exterminated. Dealing with the punk vampire was another reason for his headache. Why did I have to find that ad in the Yellow Pages?
It took him several minutes, but he finally saw his target—a vacant place to sit and have a strong drink. He forced his way through the oversexed crowd of sweaty skin, strong perfume, and the tables with seated customers, advancing slowly to the bar on the far right side of the nightclub. He strode quickly toward his objective, an empty stool at the end of a long, curved bar. On the other side of the sleek wood counter, a man stopped restocking bottles of Vlad’s popular blood soda and stared in Dick’s direction.
Halfway on his trek to the bar, a woman slammed into him. Obviously drunk or high on something, he instinctively sensed she was human, not vampire. He pushed past her, cursing under his breath. What the hell was the world coming to? Vampires, zombies, and what would come next? Werewolves and the Easter Bunny?
Dick reaffirmed his reasons as to why he hated coming to Fang Shui. The dildos that worked there were no different than the types he dealt with when human. Nothing ever changes. Not even the predictable weather.
The first week of July in Florida brought the bitch heat of summer in full swing. Ninety degree days and seventies at night made for sticky situations when hunting for the zombies on the loose. Hurricane Chucky blustered through the Orlando area only a week ago. Eighty-five mile an hour winds along with spotty tornados ripped roofs off houses, damaged parts of the international airport, and the amusement parks suffered enough to keep them closed after seven days. Not that any of those problems affected him directly, but it did make for interesting news to take his mind off Noelle.
Buck Rogers’ Spaceship! Stop thinking of her.
Despite how he didn’t want to be at the meeting, safety at the bar was a welcome relief compared to the chaos he passed on the drive over. Traffic lights were still out at some of the secondary intersections, and people didn’t adhere to the rules of the road. Long lines at gas stations didn’t make sense, either, when the power didn’t work. Did all common sense get blown away with the storm? Was I that dense as a human?
Shaking his head as he grabbed the edge of the wooden barstool to stake claim to the valued real estate, he hauled himself up onto one of the last remaining seats. The place looked like the entire population of vampires and wannabe human groupies had decided to join in the rowdy behavior at the same time. A lot of residences had been damaged, as well as night haunts of the blood-kind. Hurricane Chucky wreaked havoc on the area in more ways than one. The scare of the zombies must be driving them here. What’s with the public display of sex? That’s a new one for this place.
Blooding and sex always seemed to go hand-in-hand in this new life he led, but Dick hadn’t seen such an overwhelming sense of laissez faire toward revealing what he considered a private matter. Was Vlad aware of this? Granted, he’d only been a vampire since last October. Halloween exactly, which was more like November first, but he’d seen a lot of action in those eight to nine months. Maybe this is a special event night at Fang Shui, like Karaoke Night. No, Stormin’ Chucky Sex Night!
He laughed to himself with the thought. With a wave of his hand, he caught the bartender’s attention. He’d frequented the vamp haunt four or five times in the last two months. Ted had been tending bar every time.
“What’ll it be tonight, Dick?” The young, hip-looking vampire bartender asked. The man wiped a towel along the varnished wood bar top waiting for an answer.
Why couldn’t I have looked like him as a human?
“VieSang, cherry.” The nasty stuff was his favorite among the flavors available. Since turning last Halloween, he’d supplemented his need for blood with the weird-ass concoction. The blood-laced carbonated drink came in ten varieties, and he’d tried them all. Some he couldn’t get past his lips, let alone down his gut. The tart one had the most tolerable taste.
“For a change?”
The sarcastic tone wasn’t lost on Dick. “What can I say? I like popping cherries with my blood.” Not really, but better than nothing. As one of the many creations in Vlad’s business empire, the ten flavors of the nasty tasting drink acted as a change of pace for whole blood. Cherry at least was more palatable than the peppermint-flavored one he made at Christmas-time. I’d have thought after eight months I’d get used to the crap. But, no. I wish spiking it with alcohol was tolerable. I could use a stiffer drink. Unfortunately, he learned the hard way that the only way vampires could tolerate spirits was by assimilating through sucking blood from an imbibing human. With all the numbers of humans in the bar tonight, he was tempted but brushed the thought aside quickly. He knew that would be nothing but trouble waiting to happen.
“You’re early, if you’re here for the meeting. Vlad hasn’t shown up yet.”

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  1. I learned so much from your posting. Thanks for sharing! And for readers interested in visiting the place associated with Count Dracula you have only a few days left this year. According to Vampires, Werewolves, Zombies Compendium Monstrum: "The best time to visit Transylvania is on or immediately before and after the summer solstice, June 21, the longest day of sunlight. I'd rather read about them!

  2. I've researched the myths and legends, and one I didn't see here was the use of silver. Vampires reputedly can't be seen in mirrors or photographed because of the use of silver on the glass or in developing chemicals. This particular myth never made sense to me, because if you can see a vampire, then he's reflecting light, which would be reflected back in the glass. Chemicals used to develop film don't touch the vampire, so also shouldn't, logically thinking, have an affect on the image captured. I can see where silver can cause burns to paranormal flesh, in that it's considered a pure metal.

    I really enjoyed Vampire in Paris, and am looking forward to reading more in your vampire series'.

    Tamara Monteau

  3. Just hopping by. Thanks for the information.

  4. Socks and watermelons, who would have thought such a thing. I knew about the sneezing. Apparently blessing someone after they sneeze will protect them.


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