Thistledown – Midsummer Bedlam 1

Source: Thistledown – Midsummer Bedlam 1

Friday, October 20, 2017

Hello everyone.  As you saw last weekend Thistledown is currently on hiatus until December.  However, I thought this would be a good time to re-blog the serial thus far.
To get to episode 1, click the link at the top of the page.

I’m only doing this for those who want to catch up, so I’ve closed the comments.

I’m still blogging 1920s short stories on “Jazz Age Wednesdays.” Look for me there!  The serial is the only thing taking a break.

https://teagansbooks.com/2017/10/18/jazz-age-wednesdays-6-%E2%80%95-reviews-a-crossover-story/

Now I’m going back to planning for the novel-to-be and National Novel Writing Month.

Hugs on the wing!

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Thriving Thursdays: Busy? Maybe That’s a Good Thing

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Hello everyone.  Welcome to another Thriving Thursday.  I’m Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene here with a guest post for Chris Graham, the Story Reading Ape.  Click over to the “tree-house” and say hello — I’ve disabled comments here.

Thriving Thursdays: Busy? Maybe That’s a Good Thing

Lucille Ball and Bear

Too busy to be discouraged — but not too busy to thrive!  Here are some mindful words from my favorite redhead.

“One of the things I learned the hard way was that it doesn’t pay to get discouraged. Keeping busy and making optimism a way of life can restore you faith in yourself.” ― Lucille Ball

Update: I have to revise this with a shout-out to Dan Antion at No Facilities*.  Dan mentioned a fact I did not know about my favorite redhead having a connection to Star Trek. If you want to know more, click here*.

Wishing you a thriving Thursday,

Teagan

Copyright © 2017 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene

All rights reserved.

No part of this work may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission.  Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author’s rights.

All images are either the property of the author or provided by free sources, unless stated otherwise.

Jazz Age Wednesdays 6 ― Reviews & a Crossover Story

1918-july-vogue-woman-rooster

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

I’m so excited to get reviews!  So I hope you’ll forgive me for crowing. Today author and “fairy whisperer” Colleen Chesebro* posted a review of my debut novel,  Atonement, Tennessee.  What a delight it was to read her mindful review with my morning coffee! I’m thrilled.  Since Colleen is “the fairy whisperer I think she related to my supernatural elements.

Atonement Tennessee

(Colleen challenged me to write a faery story — resulting in the Thistledown — Midsummer Bedlam serial.  The serial is now on hiatus until December.  It will be back!

 

In honor of Colleen’s review, I’ve priced the Kindle version of my debut novel Atonement, Tennessee at just $1.00. 

On Monday I couldn’t resist reblogging a review author Christoph Fischer* did of Murder at the Bijou — Three Ingredients I.  

I hope you’ll visit both Christoph and Colleen. They both have brilliant blogs and books of their own.

Now back to the Jazz Age… 

When I got reviews for these two books within days of each other, I started wondering what Atonement, TN was like during the Roaring Twenties.  However, the characters from two very different novels were all in my head at once… and this is what happened… (I don’t think of it as a spoiler, but there’s a teeny bit of one regarding Murder at the Bijou. If you’re especially sensitive to spoilers, then skip the story.) 

Roaring Twenties Halloween in Atonement Tennessee

The ghost’s eyes glowed bright green as he stared out of the Mirror of Truth and Justice Most Poetic.

“Green like little peas,” the blond murmured.

She blinked as she gazed at the apparition inside the mirror.  Her bobbed tresses were so pale, one might have thought the ghost had scared her into fright-white hair.

She felt the presence of her nearly identical sister behind her and turned.

1920s face

“How odd,” the raven-haired sister calmly stated, the fringe of her flapper gown swaying as she moved closer to the mirror.  “While I wouldn’t put it past that mischievous mirror to trap someone, this spirit seems to have pos-i-lutely gotten there on his own.”

The platinum blond walked forward and took her sister’s hand.  They each touched a corner of the strange mirror.

“Won’t you join us?” together they invited the apparition.

The ghost shrugged uncomfortably as he stepped from the mirror and into the Metatron house.  Years of experience led him to quickly take-in his surroundings.  He noticed two paintings.  The first was an outdoor scene that appeared to be from the late 1700s.  It showed a grand estate house with women getting out of a carriage.  Nearby two girls sat under a tree.  One had pale hair while the other was dark.

He glanced at his two hostesses, comparing them to the painting.  Then his eyes quickly traveled to the other canvas.  It showed two girls in flapper attire.  The raven-haired one sported a headband with a yin and yang symbol.  It was a portrait of the two young women who stood before him.  Green eyes darting rapidly, he looked from one painting to the other, and back to the girls that stood with him.  Could they all be the same?  He knew the sisters were by no means ordinary flappers.

1923 Life woman devilish man masks

The blond reached out and touched the holes in his coat and hat.

Applesauce!  You are a policeman,” she stated.  “A G-man.  That is how you came to the Mirror of Truth and Justice.”

Bullet holes, he remembered as she inspected the damage.  Then the echo of the pain wracked him.  He staggered.

“Marshal Moses Myrick,” he muttered, trying to make his tongue work to introduce himself as civility required.

Each young woman took one of his elbows and had him sit down on a horsehair covered sofa.

“So, you have come to atone?” asked the dark-haired girl.

“But not for whatever caused you to be shot… many times,” the light-haired girl said in a puzzled voice.

“The wrongs I’ve done were part of my job.  Keeping the law and justice,” he said on a gasp.  “I don’t apologize for what I’ve done in the line of duty.”

“Then what?” the women asked as one.

“I couldn’t make Phanny love me.  She married my friend when we were young.  It would have been wrong to interfere.  And now,” he gasped and paused.  “Now he’s long dead, and she’ll know the pain of loss again, because I couldn’t resist keeping her in my life, but I couldn’t give up the law either.”

“You know she loves you,” the raven-haired one commented.  “At least you know it while you’re in this state.  Are you so ready to leave her?”

“How could she ever love a man like me?  What kind of life could I give her when this kind of violence is part of it?” Moses asked, putting a hand to where one of his bullet wounds would have been.

“Well, you won’t know if you stay here,” the brunette smirked in a self-satisfied way.  “You might have some stiff competition, but you just might make Phanny love you yet.  After all, you are a bit of a sheik,” she added playfully.

“I know your pain will be horrible,” the blond began gently.  “But it’s not your time yet.”

The young women helped the shade of Marshal Moses Myrick stand and walked him back to the mirror.  The room filled with intense cold.  The sisters turned toward each other and shared a smile.  When they looked at the mirror, the marshal was once again inside it.  He tipped his fedora as he smiled and disappeared.

Mirror

***

The End

Those who have read Murder at the Bijou will recognize Marshal Moses Myrick. 

If you’ve read Atonement, Tennessee you’ll be wondering if the sisters are the same Metatron family as Annie from that novel.  Yet, the timeline would not be right…  Although, you never know what might be possible in Atonement, TN.  Nope, I’m not telling!  There is a bit of mystery surrounding Annie and Adelle Metatron that comes up in Atonement in Bloom.  It will remain unexplained… at least for now. 

Here is a link to a short story I did in 2015, which is about Annie and Adelle.  (Click here.)

Here are links to the 1920s novels.

Bijou front only 2

Murder at the Bijou — Three Ingredients I

Novel-book-The Three Things Serial Story-Teagan Riordain Geneviene-The Writer Next Door-Vashti Q-spotlight-author

The Three Things Serial Story: A Little 1920s Story Kindle 

Thanks so very much for visiting.  You’re the cat’s pajamas!

 

Copyright © 2017 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene

All rights reserved. 

No part of this work may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission.  Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author’s rights.  

 

Mystery Mondays Review: “Murder at the Bijou” by Teagan Riordain Geneviene

Wow — what a way to start my week! Thanks to Christoph Fischer for this wonderful review of my 1920s novel, “Murder at the Bijou — Three Ingredients I”.
I hope you’ll click over and say hello to Christoph.

writerchristophfischer

Bijou front only 2

This is a very enjoyable murder story set in the 1920s. Pip, Granny Phanny and a whole bunch of alliterated characters populate the story of surprisingly strong suspense with equally surprising turns of events.
This is hugely enjoyable and definitely recommended to anyone with a sense of fun and humour.

I loved this book when it was published in parts on the blog and loved it even more re-reading it as a whole in one sitting. Yes, one sitting.

I only now realised just how much work had gone into the individual parts. I often forgot from one week to the next what certain references mean or what they allude to. The novel is hugely enjoyable and a fun read thanks to many quirky expressions, usage of words off the beaten track, fabulous character names and many more delicious ingredients.
The writing is very original and the story line is…

View original post 546 more words

Thistledown – Midsummer Bedlam 13: Afoul of a Fowl

Mod Squad 1070s tv cover

Friday, October 13, 2017

When I was a kid, each summer all the network TV shows would go on “hiatus.”  We were left with nothing but reruns (and we didn’t have cable or VCRs).  Or even worse, favorite shows were completely omitted for “summer replacement series,” which almost always fell far short of the mark. 

What’s the connection to writing serials?  It’s a lot of work, but it’s also a labor of love.  Authoring serials can also be stressful, love it or not.  After this episode, Thistledown will be on hiatus until December.  If you need your faery fix, I’m going to reblog the prior episodes.nanowrimo-Bernstein

Why?  I’ve decided to do National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo).  It’s not easy to write the draft of a novel in just the month of November.  So, other things will have to slide for a while.  I really need the “rah-rah!” that I get from that event.  

My midweek posts for Jazz Age Wednesday will continue.  I have a few of those already prepared. 

Now finally, to Thistledown…

Thistledown

Midsummer Bedlam 13

Fairy_Islands_1916_by_Ida_Rentoul_Outhwaite

Ida Rentoul Outhwaite, 1916

 

Afoul of a Fowl

The familiar, comfortable sounds of the forest surrounded us as River Mindshadow and I walked, led by the periwinkle colored muskox hair.  The long strand stood out straight, a silken divining rod.  Blue-lavender sparks from that hair glittered the air.

I had no idea why the muskox hair behaved as it did.  Uncle had tried to teach me to divine with any number of objects from sticks to pendulums, but I never had a knack for it.  Then Bob the hummingbird brought me the unusually colored hair.  He had been frightened away before I could figure out why he brought it.  However, when the hair started to point with insistent pops of static energy, River and I decided to see where it led.

“Ouch!” I cried as a particularly stinging static charge hit me.

“Do you want me to take it for a while?” River asked, but I could tell she wasn’t especially eager.

“No… I’m afraid it will stop working if I let go,” I answered resignedly.

“Maybe Tinder Willowtree would let us use that finder* thing,” River suggested.

“No, it wouldn’t work,” I replied after a moment’s thought.  “She told me that whoever she’s looking for has to wear a medallion that’s been attuned to the finder — otherwise it’s not much more than an ordinary scrying mirror.

Chicken face Red jairo-alzate-188815

Jairo Alzate, Unsplash

Low bushes rustled and a chicken with bright multicolored feathers strutted out onto our path.  To my astonishment the periwinkle hair dipped down toward the chicken.  With a purple pop, it shocked the bird’s bottom.  Feathers flew and the chicken cackled loudly as it ran back in the direction from which it came.

While we let the muskox hair lead the way, I hadn’t really paid attention to my surroundings.  The muffled sounds of women’s voices reached my ears.  With a look around, I exclaimed.

“Oh!  I think Willow Rainbow* lives just over there,” I commented, pointing after the chicken.  

“Rhymer once told me that her aunt has a ton of spell books,” River suggested with an eager flutter of her wings.  “It would make things a lot easier if we had a spell to help us understand where the hair is trying to lead, or why the hummingbird brought it to you.”

We both turned toward the sound of the chicken cackling when a familiar voice was added to its squawks.

“Whatever is the matter?  You’re making such a clatter!  You’re upset all together.  It looks like you lost some feathers!”

River and I turned toward one another and remarked in unison, “Rhymer Rainbow!”

“That’s my name, don’t wear it out!” Rhymer said playfully as she came onto the path still holding the chicken.  “Bedlam and River, why didn’t you give me a shout?  I’m visiting my aunt, she lives just over there.  Come on ― there are cookies to share.”

Buffaloberry bush

Buffaloberry bush

The chicken clucked, tucked under Rhymer’s arm.  She pushed aside bushes with waxy leaves and clusters of white and bright red buffaloberries.  The berries were bitter, but they still made a nice pie.  Rhymer commented that the chicken had a fondness for buffaloberries and sometimes wandered away looking for them.

On the other side of the shrubs was a yellow farmhouse with a thatched roof.  A small duplicate stood to one side of the house.  It was an elaborate chicken coop.  Rhymer sat the complaining fowl down.  It looked at its behind, which showed a few missing feathers from the zap of the periwinkle muskox hair.  The chicken turned to me with a parting glare, and trotted to the coop.

Rhymer’s aunt, Willow Rainbow, greeted us warmly, “Come inside girls.  It’s lovely to have so much company.  What brings you to my cottage in the woods?”

River told Willow how the long silken hair suddenly became a divining rod, leading us and then abruptly stopping.

“We thought perhaps a finding spell might get it going again,” River explained.

“How remarkable!” Willow exclaimed.  “Bedlam, your grand-uncle once asked me if I would be interested in giving you lessons about spells, although I honestly didn’t feel qualified,” Rhymer’s aunt said humbly.  “So, I’m sure some research would be fine with him.  But I’ll have to leave you on your own.  My crochet circle is meeting, or I’d be glad to delve into the books with you.  You girls take some cookies and help yourselves to the books.  Rhymer will you show them to the library?”

Chickens at cottage vintage

Each of us grabbed a double handful of cookies as we were about to leave the kitchen.  Willow turned abruptly and we hesitated.

“Oh, just one thing.  Use any of the books you please,” Willow Rainbow told us.  “But not the Etheraris Spiregris.  It’s far too dangerous.  I really should get rid of it, but it seems so wrong to do away with any book!”

River and I exchanged a significant look.

The End

***

This time we revealed only one new person among the mystery folk,  Willow Rainbow was named by Christine Robinson. Be sure to click over and say hello.

On Wednesdays I’ll try to give you some NaNoWriMo updates.  I think you’ll like the book-cover I made to inspire myself.  As for Thistledown, see you in December. 

Hugs on the wing! 

 

This is a work of fiction.  Characters, names, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, locales, or events is entirely coincidental. 

Copyright © 2017 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene

All rights reserved.

No part of this work may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission.  Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author’s rights.

All images are either the property of the author or provided by free sources, unless stated otherwise.

 

Jazz Age Wednesdays 5 — Pip in the Corn Maze

Wednesday, October 11, 2017 

red tam Pictoral Review Jan 1927

1927

Welcome to October at Jazz Age Wednesday.  I’ve been so busy, I forgot today was Wednesday!  However, I’m here now, with something new for the Pip-verse and I’ve gotten all Halloween-ish!

Writing Process

I was honored when Chris Graham*, the Story Reading Ape himself, agreed to do a short story for one of my Get Caught Reading Month posts awhile back.  (Check it out here*Chris is a fabulous storyteller, and it could be a prequel for the story below.) When I started writing this adventure for Pip, I just wasn’t “feeling it” until I remembered that story from Chris.  With his permission, I decided take a cue from his story and bring in one of his “naughty chimp” characters.

About This Story

This is another pantser tale.  Online I found a Pictionary word list for Halloween.  I decided to let that be my guide for random “things” to spontaneously write Halloween-ish stories of the Pip-verse.  I cut the list into slips for individual terms, put them in a bag, and then drew three slips or “things.”  They are:  corn maze, autumn, and zombie.

Now back to the Jazz Age!

Between corn rows 2

Pip in the Corn Maze

Trees in their glad rags of orange and yellow leaves lined the dirt road.  Granny Phanny maneuvered her cherished Model-T to avoid a hole.

“It’s the Autumn Festival, Pip.  Come on.  You’ll have a good time,” my grandmother insisted, but I had my doubts.  “There will be all sorts of things for young folks to do.  Now hang on to that basket,” she cautioned as we rounded a sharp curve.  “Those apple pies are for the bake sale.  Nobody will want to buy a pie that’s had the juice sloshed out of it.”

I had a hunch that the “young folks” part was a bunch of phonus balonus.  Although, I knew better than to voice that thought to Granny.  My grandmother slowed the automobile and pointed.

“Oh look!  They even made a billboard,” she said as she stopped to admire the sign.  “See all the fun things it lists?  Apple bobbing, the Sundown Séance, why there’s even a corn maze.”

Corn Field People n Background bonnie-kittle-143218

Bonnie Kittle, Unsplash

“That’s nice Granny, but this is a weekday and it’s the middle of the day too.  Everybody is either at work or at school, unless they’re—” I shut my mouth just in time before I said the word old.

Wet blanket wasn’t a name I could be called, but nobody was there but a bunch of bluenose old ladies.  Granny introduced me to some of them.  It was a combination of fawning over the visiting grandchild and tut-tutting from the ones who knew I was in Savannah with Granny as punishment for an adventure that included a yacht, a circus baron, and a gilded mansion in Sarasota, Florida.  I excused myself and wandered aimlessly.

My bored noodle was at war with my sore feet when I came upon the corn maze.  It was getting hot in the afternoon sun too.  The day before had been downright chilly.  Not so a day later, but that was typical October weather for Savannah.

I took a limping step.  There was definitely a pebble in my shoe.  Propping against the entrance sign for the maze, I untied my burgundy and cream oxfords to shake out the offending stone.  I took off the tam I had made to match my oxfords and used it to fan myself.

When I looked inside the maze I saw inviting greens and yellows, and sun-dappled shade.  A light breeze brushed my face as it moved into the maze, as if to invite me to the cooling shadows.  I really should have known better.  I pos-i-lutely have no sense of direction.  In no time, I was frustratingly, hopelessly lost in the labyrinth.

Hands in Corn Maze felix-russell-saw-136018

Felix Russell, Unsplash

Everything was unnaturally quiet.  It got creepy.  I jumped at a shifting shadow ahead, then scolded myself.

It’s not as if you’re going to walk into a zombie or something!  Get ahold of yourself, flapper!

Sounds of movement reached my ears so I turned left at the next opening.  I heard someone yawn.  Sheik or Sheba?  Who could guess gender from a yawn, but it sounded like a man to me.  I was just relieved that there was another person nearby.

Hopefully a living, breathing person, not the walking dead, my inner cynic muttered.

When I rounded the next turn, I stopped in my tracks.  That was no man!  It was a hairy animal.  I tried not to make a sound.  I didn’t want to startle a wild animal.  I squinted into the shadows.  What was it anyway?  A baby bear?

It made a harsh, shrill sound.  My eyes widened when I realized what kind of critter it was — a chimpanzee!

The chimp stretched and scratched his armpit.  He looked at me and grinned!  Then to my astonishment he bowed politely and called me by name.  That’s right.  The chimp talked!

I asked how he came to be in the corn maze.  I expected he had gotten lost from a circus somewhere, or maybe a zoo.

Cautiously, I inched closer.  It had to be some kind of gag.  If I ran out screaming about a talking chimp, there would be twenty people standing there laughing at me, I just knew it.  He picked up on my skepticism.

Reading Ape purple

“Pip, I promise you I’m the real McCoy, as you would say.  I’m Aristotle, but I hope you’ll call me Artie.  I’ve traveled a long way through time and space to meet you,” the chimp explained.

All thoughts of finding my way out of the maze left my mind.  Since he could talk I figured I might as well beat my gums with the little hairy guy.  But wait a minute… did he say through time?

“You traveled through t-time?”

To my increasing astonishment, Artie explained how he got there all the way from England.  He had invented a time machine — a for real time machine!  However, at first it would only go forward, not back to another era.  It also tended to land about 19 miles to the west of where he meant it to be.  Finally Artie fixed the machine so it would go backward in time.  Although he still hadn’t worked out the location problem.  That was why his time machine landed in the corn maze, not at Granny Phanny’s cottage.

“You honestly mean to tell me that you came here specifically to meet me?  Me?” I asked.

“Paisley Idelle Peabody,” he began and surprised me even more by knowing my full name.  “Your adventures are known far and wide — at least in my time.  The world hasn’t always known your story, but once it was unearthed, you became rather famous,” he assured me.

The corn maze was so cool and quiet that Artie sat down for a “ponderating moment” — in other words, he took a nap.  I figured the little guy was pretty tired if he traveled both across the ocean and through time.  I eased away quietly because I didn’t want to disturb him, but I pos-i-lutely had to tell somebody about him.

I managed to find my way to the entrance.  Only then did it occur to me that I hadn’t seen Artie’s time travel vehicle.  I turned to go back.  Suddenly it seemed important that I get a look at the contraption.Blue Lucille Ball Stage Door Trailer

A loud metallic screech made me cringe.  It was followed by a loud whirring sound.

“Artie?” I exclaimed worriedly as I rushed to retrace my steps.

“Oh no!  Not yet.  We’ve only just started getting acquainted!” Artie cried.

It only took a moment for me to reach the spot where I’d left the chimp, but he was gone.  I looked all around.  When I went around the next corner I found a big area where the corn was flattened and the ground felt hot to the touch.  My shoulders sagged.

The Halloween story of the century and I can’t tell a soul.  They’d cart me off to the looney bin if I did.

The End.

***

Would you like to continue the 1920s mood?  Did you notice the magazine image at the beginning? It mentions Edith Wharton having a “new” novel.  She was a Pulitzer Prize-winning American novelist, short story writer, and designer.  Wharton was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1927, 1928 and 1930.  While I didn’t find a free version of “Twilight Sleep” for you, some of her books are free at Project Gutenberg*!

Have you visited author Teri Polen’s Bad Moon Rising event?  Leading up to Halloween, author Teri Polen hosts Bad Moon Rising.  It’s her yearly celebration of suspense and horror.  Each year more than 30 horror/thriller indie authors are featured throughout the month of October on her blog, Books & Such.  I was there earlier this week! (Click here if you missed it.)

At Teri Polen’s Books & Such

Atonement TennesseeIn honor of Bad Moon Rising, through October, I’ve priced the Kindle version of my debut novel Atonement, Tennessee at just $1.00. 

 

Now I engage in more shameless self-promotion…  Here are links to the books about Pip and her friends.

Bijou front only 2

Murder at the Bijou — Three Ingredients I

Novel-book-The Three Things Serial Story-Teagan Riordain Geneviene-The Writer Next Door-Vashti Q-spotlight-author

The Three Things Serial Story: A Little 1920s Story Kindle 

Thanks so very much for visiting.  You’re the cat’s pajamas!

 

Copyright © 2017 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene

All rights reserved.

No part of this work may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission.  Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author’s rights.  

 

#BadMoonRising Teagan Riordain Geneviene #IndieAuthor #UrbanFantasy #Supernatural

I always hesitate to do reblogs but… Teri was so kind to feature me, so I’ll “atone” for this later. 😉
Be sure to visit her frequently for Bad Moon Rising. It lasts all month.
Hugs!

Books and Such

Welcome, Teagan Geneviene!  If you’re a fan of Teagan’s book, Atonement, Tennessee, I’m about to make your day.  She’s nearly finished the sequel, Atonement in Bloom, and an excerpt is below!  Even better, it’s from Lilith’s POV, my fav calico cat.  Sit back, relax, and learn some new things about Teagan.

Hi Teri — I’m excited to be a part of Bad Moon Rising again this year!

Favorite Halloween costume as a child or adult?

I was usually a gypsy for Halloween. Yes, that was something that I could create even though I didn’t have much in the way of resources. However, I might have chosen it anyway. I loved the idea of their freedom, colors, the gaudy jewelry, and dancing.cat halloween

Any paranormal experiences you’d like to share?

It’s not exactly a fun answer, but I’ve had several. The one that’s most powerful is this… When I was a young…

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