Today’s author is a familiar face to many of you – maybe it’s from her poems and weekly poetry challenges, her author interviews, or her Carrot Ranch writing challenges. If you own a rocking horse, many of you may be pushing them to the curb after reading this interview. Welcome Colleen M. Chesebro!
Vampires, ghosts, werewolves, or zombies – which would you least want to meet in a dark alley?
I would have to say that I would be terrified to meet a zombie in a dark alley. There’s just something about the zombies that makes my skin crawl!
Think about it… zombies are reawakened corpses who become human eating machines. And once you’re a zombie all you want to do is bite someone else, so you can infect another person with the same virus that made you a zombie. It’s a terrifying proposition. A chance meeting with a zombie could end a writing career for good.
I do realize that the fear of the undead is one of our most primeval fears stretching back into antiquity. Ancient gravesites have been found containing rocks placed on skeletal remains because the living feared the ability of the undead to rise once again.
Zombie folklore from Haiti explains another explanation for the zombie phenomena. Horrible conditions for West African slaves working in the sugar cane plantations left the slaves yearning for freedom. It is thought that these conditions represented the afterlife and the predicament of slavery represented in zombie form. However, medical journals in Haiti do confirm evidence of actual zombies. (History.com-Zombies)
So, bring on the ghosts, vampires, and werewolves. I can deal with those phenomena better than reawakened corpses. LOL!
What’s the creepiest thing that’s ever happened while you were alone?
Many years ago, when I was in the Air Force stationed in East Anglia in the U.K., my ex-husband and I rented an old farmhouse in the English countryside close to RAF Lakenheath.
I remember I was pregnant with my second child at the time. I only mention it because I believe that somehow made me more susceptible to the spiritual vibrations in the area. All I know is the old stone house gave me a creepy feeling every time I walked inside.
That Christmas, we purchased one of those rocking horse toys suspended on a metal frame with giant springs for our older daughter. Tabitha loved feeding the horses that grazed in the field next to the house. She and I made a daily habit of visiting the horses, and she was crazy in love with them, like most three-year-old girls are.
Image Credit: popscreen.com
English homes back then were divided into many small rooms, each with a door. I had a hard time finding a place where the rocking horse could fit. It was so large that I finally stored it in the hallway outside the kitchen beneath the stairs where I could watch Tabitha playing as I prepared our evening meal.
After a few evenings of play, Tabitha said that she didn’t want to go into the hallway to play on the toy anymore. Of course, I figured the charm of the rocking horse had worn off. So, I didn’t pursue it with her any further.
One thing I did notice was that the hallway was always freezing. We could shut the door to the lounge and the kitchen to keep the downstairs warmer which I had a habit of doing. Whenever you had to go upstairs to the loo, you had to go by way of the hallway and stairs. I don’t remember a time that hallway wasn’t freezing cold – even in summer.
As I progressed with my pregnancy, I stayed home by myself during the day, as my ex would leave for work after taking Tabitha to daycare.
One afternoon, while I sat on the couch watching a television program, I heard the springs squeaking on the rocking horse. The hairs on the back of my neck stood up at attention. I had the most unsettling feeling I’ve ever had, almost like being sick to your stomach. I knew I was completely alone in the house, out in the middle of nowhere. I glanced through the window to see if the wind was blowing but it was a normal overcast English summer day, and there was no wind.
I crept closer and peeked through the glass door that separated the lounge from the hallway. There, underneath the stairs, the rocking horse bounced with a steady rhythm as if someone was riding it. The squeaky springs creaked making me cringe in fright. After about five minutes, the rocking stopped.
That night when my ex came home, I told him what had happened. I also informed him that I wanted to move. He gave me a funny look and shared a similar experience having seen the rocking horse moving on its own one night. No wonder Tabitha didn’t want to ride the horse in the spooky hallway.
I felt that we had witnessed the ghost of a small child still attached to the house, who wanted to play with the rocking horse. The coldness never left the hallway and my paranormal radar worked overtime. I couldn’t wait to leave.
The next month, we moved from the house. Tabitha played with her rocking horse until she outgrew it with no further mishaps. I still get the shivers when I think of that house.
Are you superstitious?
I’ve always been superstitious as far back as I can remember. I suspect part of that was because my mother died when I was three and I lived with my grandparents until I was about six or seven. My grandfather came from Russia and he told me all kinds of folk stories when I was growing up. I’m sure many of these stories were the sort you shouldn’t tell young children, but nevertheless they fired my imagination!
One of these strange superstitions (well, I still believe it!) is the rule of three. The idea is that whatever positive or negative energy a person puts into the world will return to that person three times. In fact, the number 3 has figured prominently in many important dates throughout my life.
I don’t believe in coincidences either. Everything happens for a reason. Just like my participation in Bad Moon Rising.
How do you develop your plots and characters?
I have the most vivid dreams. Many times, the idea for a plot comes to me through a dream. Sometimes, an idea pops into my head from the ether. Sometimes, I get my ideas from television, movies, or even real-life events. It’s only an idea, but I do write it down. Then, I brainstorm to see if the idea can develop further into a story, poem, or even a book plot.
I base many of my characters off of real people I’ve known in the past. I worked as a bookkeeper and a legal assistant much of my past career, so I met many strange and unusual characters. A few of these people were quite scary. Some of these personalities have found their way into my writing.
Who or what has influenced your writing, and in what way?
My writing has been most influenced by my blogging journey. I started out four years ago as a new blogger looking for a way to increase my writing opportunities. It was within that community of bloggers and authors that I found my path to becoming an author. The support I’ve received from other authors has been phenomenal.
I am an avid reader, so as soon as I read a book, I follow up with a book review on my blog. Writing about other author’s writing has helped me learn the craft. The same went for poetry. I love poetry and got my feet wet with a Haiku Challenge that eventually led to me hosting my own poetry challenge.
Poetry helps you write better stories. Last year I discovered a love for writing flash fiction by participating in a weekly flash fiction challenge. Each new writing challenge has propelled me toward another writing goal.
What are you working on now?
Remember how I said I create many of my characters from people I’ve known? Well, last year I asked seven other authors to form a group blog with me. They liked many of the same things that I did, like crystals, tarot cards, Rune Stones, angels, paganism, etc. They agreed, and we named the blog “The Sisters of the Fey.” Of course, you know my fairy nymphs guided me to these wonderful folks.
G. Kaye (Debby Gies), Adele Marie Park, Annette Rochelle Aben, Deborah Bowman, Marjorie Mallon, Tina Frisco, and Wendy Anne Darling have all joined me as co-authors on the Sisters of the Fey blog.
One thing led to another. Suddenly, I had an idea for a story, then a novella, and now possibly a book, called, “The Sisters of the Fey – Genesis.” The story is about eight Slavic Witches who are asked to form an alliance with the Rusalki Fey to protect magic from the Byzantine Monks who are spreading their new religion across the land.
I promise there will be some unusual paranormal twists and turns to keep my readers enthralled. And yes, I’ve based the characters loosely off of my author friend’s personalities. It will be fun for my readers (many who already know my friends) to see if they can figure out who is which character. I hope to release this book by January 2019.
New Release: Fairies, Myths, & Magic ~ A Summer Celebration priced at $.99 for the summer season.
Title: Fairies, Myths, & Magic ~ A Summer Celebration
Release Date: June 17, 2018
Format: Kindle Paperback
Purchase from: Amazon & FREE on Kindle Unlimited
Country Tagged Universal Book Link: Smarturl.it/FairiesMythsMagic
Step into a world where fairies, dragons, and other magical beings converge in a collection of poetry and short stories inspired by the celebration of Litha, the Summer Solstice.
Meet Drac, a dragon cursed by his own poisonous deeds, and two pixies who help an old man remember a lost love. You’ll meet a pair of fairies with a sense of humor, and a young girl who fulfills her destiny after being struck by lightning. Learn what happens when a modern witch’s spell goes terribly wrong. Meet the Sisters of the Fey, a group of Slavic Witches who sign a pact with the Rusalki Fey to preserve their magic for the good of all.
Atmospheric and haunting, the prose and poetry, will rewrite the mythologies of the past bringing them into the future.
Colleen M. Chesebro is an American Novelist who loves writing about paranormal fantasy and magical realism, cross-genre fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction. She loves all things magical which may mean that she could be experiencing her second childhood—or not. That part of her life hasn’t been fully decided yet.
A few years ago, a mystical experience led her to renew her passion for writing and storytelling. These days she resides in the fantasy realm of the Fairy Whisperer where she writes the magical poetry and stories that the fairy nymphs whisper to her in her dreams.
Colleen won the Little and Laugh Flash Fiction Contest sponsored by the Carrot Ranch Literary Community.com in November 2017 for her piece, called The Bus Stop. Her debut novel, The Heart Stone Chronicles: The Swamp Fairy won gold in the 2017 AuthorsDB.com cover contest.
Colleen lives in Colorado with her husband and her two Pomeranians, Sugar and Spice. When she is not writing, Colleen enjoys spending time with her husband and friends. She also loves gardening, reading, and crocheting old-fashioned doilies into works of art.
Feel free to get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
colleenchesebro.com Author Blog
Facebook Author Page
Sisters of the Fey sistersofthefey.wordpress.com