10:06 AM

In the Author Spotlight & Contest


CONTEST: Carolina has a contest running on her website for The Entrancement. There are three questions there for readers to answer – two answers can be found in her website and the third is an open-ended question. The first prize is a paperback copy of her murder, magic and mayhem in the middle ages medieval paranormal, Door in the Sky, and a copy of Writing Romance, with romance writing tips from SFA-RWA authors like Barbara Freethy and Karin Tabke (and a chapter by Carolina!). The second and third winners each receive a copy of Door in the Sky. The questions and instructions for the contest can be found at:


AL: Hi Carolina Thanks for being in the “Author Spotlight” this week.

Carolina: Really glad to be here, Ann. 

AL: So, tell us what’s happening with you.

Carolina: Work at the University never seems to slow down, even in the summer. The students will be coming back soon, so we’re getting ready for them. My son is finishing up at community college and deciding where to transfer. He’s an artist so we’re looking at art schools.

I guess the biggest thing is that I’m going back to an ashram in India in September. I just went to get my Visa renewed in San Francisco today. Now all I have to do is book my flight, get a lot of rupees and pack for Chennai.

AL: Tell us about your new or upcoming release.

Carolina: I had two books come out this year. First, The Entrancement, my snake-handler/faith healer meets erotic bluegrass fiddler came out in March from Champagne Books. In May, Sacred Guardian, my dark angel book, was released by The Wild Rose Press.

AL: What other works are you “whipping” up for us?

Carolina: I love that term: “whipping up!” Right now I am working on the sequel to Door in the Sky. I felt I was unfair to the Inquisition soldier at the end of Door in the Sky – he was a villain who turned into a hero (think Ralph Fiennes – he can look tortured and lethal at the same time) - I didn’t let him get the girl. The sequel is his book and his love interest is fifteen years older than him and an Irish Wisewoman. This book takes the Inquisition soldier and his love interest (they really fight the overwhelming attraction to each other) from Ireland to Avebury in Britain, to Paris, and finally to Damascus and the Holy lands where the Inquisition soldier goes on a crusade for Saint Louis of France.

AL: When did you know you had to be a writer?

Carolina: When I was about six or so I had to tell stories to my little sister to get her to shut up and go to sleep so I could get some rest. It worked so I kept telling her adventure stories where she was a magical creature and then I started writing them down.

AL: When you write do you do a detailed outline before you get started or do you have the idea then just 'fly by the seat of your pants'? :-)

Carolina: I’m a “pantser” – I love to be surprised. I always know the beginning and the end of each book but the rest just flows on out. Usually a character starts to bug me. For example, in the Entrancement it was the hero. This was really odd because though I was raised Christian, I’ve been Wiccan for the past 40 years or so. I completely respect all faiths but when this faith-healer preacher started to bug me I wondered what was up. I knew he lived in the South and I knew his story was kind of quirky and not a standard romance, but I gave up fighting him, sat at my computer and allowed to story to take off.

AL: What do you feel is the most important thing that a first-time author should know?

Carolina: Don’t quit your day job! Of all the authors I know, very few write for a living. All the rest, including me, have jobs.

AL: Now, let’s take a splash in the pool…Summer is here! What is your favorite part about this sunny season?

Carolina: The ice cream truck! It sounds silly, but we still have one here that visits the neighborhood park. I used to get treats for my son when he was little and I was walking with him back from his YMCA Kid’s Club Afterschool program. I remember fun stuff like bubble gum and spider man ice cream. When I hear the truck it brings that all back.

AL: What is the most adventurous thing you’ve ever done?

Carolina: When I first went to the ashram in India in 2006 the airplane I was on nearly shook apart because the pilot kept trying to land in Hong Kong during a huge cyclone with tons of rain and wind! I remember seeing the sides of the plane bulge and the woman I was paired with (because she was afraid of flying!) grabbed my hand. The pilot finally gave up and we had to land in mainland China. They wouldn’t let us get off the plane and we were all on the same plane for 35 hours. We missed our connection in Singapore and our ride to the ashram but it all worked out.

AL: If you could meet someone famous in either history, or present day…who would you like to meet and why?

Carolina: I’d like to meet Nelson Mandela. I heard from a Teacher that he needed to be in jail for so long to deeply learn to forgive, that the man who went into jail was not the same man who emerged so many years later.

AL: What annoys you enough to be considered a pet peeve?

Carolina: I get annoyed when I can’t find something. This bugs me at work; it bugs me at home, even in my car. “Now, where did I put that CD? I know it’s here somewhere . . .”

AL: Silly question… You have just won five thousand dollars! But...you have to spend it all today. What will you buy?

Carolina: Probably an E-Reader and a few hundred book-downloads. Music as well – can’t forget that!

AL: Please share a favorite quote(s) with us.

Carolina: From the movie Lord of the Rings, spoken by Cate Blanchette

“The world is changing. I can feel it in the earth; I can feel it in the air.”

AL: Thanks so much for sharing with us this week, Carolina.

Carolina: Thanks for the chance to talk to you!

AL: If you’d like to find out more about Carolina please visit:




Laney Parker has a secret. She is completely devoted to her church, but to support herself and her disabled child, she plays the fiddle in an erotic bluegrass band. The women wear overalls and are completely naked underneath. The lead singer wears a codpiece, an item that grows in size as he sings. No way can she let anyone know what she has to do for a living!

Jesse Murdoch has a secret too. Born with a Healing Gift, Jesse serves in his father’s church. However, Jesse’s gift has a price; its use requires him to experience extreme sensual experiences. When this cost becomes deadly, he flees his parents and becomes Pastor of Laney’s church. No way can he let anyone know what he must do to appease his Gift!

Worlds collide when Jesse meets Laney. He must hide his Gift’s price and she must hide the fact that she plays the fiddle onstage with barely a stitch of clothing. When a Hollywood agent discovers the up-and-coming Tennessee Tussle band, and Jesse’s Gift makes greater demands for its use, the jig is up.


“Alida, get out of there!” Laney stretched to see around the bushes. “Someone’s coming.” She smoothed her hair and skirt.

Alida slid out of the door and was under the police tape before Laney could finish her second sentence.

“Why, Pastor Jesse.” Alida put her arm around Laney’s back and pinched her. “Laney was just showing me the damage the old ghostie made.”

“It’s pretty amazing, isn’t it?” Jesse glanced over Alida’s shoulder but turned to Laney. “Ms. Parker.”

“Laney,” Alida corrected him. “I know those rules.You’ve had your date, so you’re on first name terms now.” She leaned way over the police tape and stared into the shadowed office. “Did that brother of hers behave himself?”

“He didn’t eat anything but a handful of raspberries.”

“Well of course he wouldn’t eat! He’s still Johnny Reb until after Gettysburg.” Alida’s mouth set in a straight line. “Then he’ll be going back to his woman, and… Yow!” Alida jumped back. “Lane!” Her face had turned green-gray and her fingers dug into Laney’s arm.

“It’s okay, Lida. The ghost never comes out here.” Laney tapped Alida’s death grip on her arm where her skin was purpling underneath Alida’s nails. “Come on now. That hurts!”

“But Lane, I can see him!” Alida let go but jumped behind Laney. “And he’s lookin’ at me!”

Jesse reached for Laney’s arm and trailed his fingers over her bruised and dented skin, leaving a path of teal light and a liquid melting inside her middle that was so sweet it fair curled her toes. Laney startled and glanced at Alida, but her friend was looking away from her, still staring at the

church office doorway.

“Can’t you see him there?” Alida’s voice had a ragged huskiness to it. “Tell me I’m not just seein’ things.”

Jesse squinted at the doorway and pointed to the top left corner. “Right there. Either he’s floating, or he’s over seven feet tall.” He pulled the police tape up over his head and motioned the two women to step inside the perimeter.

“B-but the police…”

“It’s my church.” Jesse took Laney’s arm, but no glow formed where he touched. “What?”

“It’s not happening because Alida’s watching,” Laney whispered as she stepped underneath the tape. She turned to face Alida. “Come on now, Alida. Remember Ghost Patrol? No ghostie’s a gonna get me,” she lilted.

“That was a movie, Laney.” Alida stepped from foot to foot, but finally ducked under the tape. “What’s the ghost’s name?”

“If the accounts are accurate, we’re dealing with a single entity, the late Pastor Blackstone.”

“He won’t bust me up like he did the room, will he?” Alida hung back while Laney and Jesse moved forward. “Hey, I’ll just keep a lookout here,” she hollered.

“Oooo. Cold spot right here in the doorway.” Laney chafed her hands together and blew on them. “It’s so cold I can see my breath.”

“You’d better stay back, Laney.”


“The ghost is looking at you in a way I don’t like.”

“And just what way is that?”

“Have you had an experience with this entity before?”

“He stole my slip once.”

“What!” Jesse swiveled in place until he was standing in front of her. “Your slip?”

“We’d all changed into Christmas costumes. I was Mary Magdalene that year, and my slip showed under the costume.” She shrugged. “When I came back it was gone.”

“Was it ever found?”


Jesse stared at her. “Anybody else could have taken it. Maybe a boy who liked you took it, or someone did it on a dare.”

She reached up to smooth her hair, avoiding his eyes. “No sir. The room was locked during the ceremony and Mrs. Downing had the key. Later on, I felt this cold spot in the corner where he’s standing.” She glanced at the apparition. “It was the ghost.” The good Pastor Blackstone looked sad. “Jesse, he doesn’t seem mean or anything. Maybe he just wants to be noticed.”

“I’ve dealt with this kind of thing before and I still don’t like the way he’s looking at you.” Jesse’s eyes narrowed. “He destroyed the property of this church and either directly or indirectly caused the deaths of several men. I intend to do something about that.”

Jesse looked down and took a breath, one huge inhalation. Laney thought he’d never stop, but once he did, he blew the air out fast. When he finished exhaling, he looked up. His midnight blue eyes had gone flat and an electric current ran all around his form tinting the edges of his arms and hands with clear blue light. “Pastor Blackstone.” His voice was quiet, but commanding, and it had a ringing to it that reminded Laney of when she’d used a wooden stick to strike the brass bowl Alida had gotten when she’d gone through a Buddhist phase back in high school.

Laney looked back at Alida. Her friend made the cuckoo sign around her ear, but Laney shook her head.

Jesse pivoted back to face the destruction of his office. “Come out where I can see you better.”

The ruined desk rattled and the door bowed inward. Alida squeaked and grabbed at the police tape.

“I said show yourself.” Jesse took another deep breath and exhaled again. “Now!”

A Bible Jesse had used for sermons before the ghost had destroyed the office floated into the doorway. Pages in it turned until it came to a stop and stayed there, floating in the air.

Laney looked back. Alida was right behind her now, breathing on her shoulder in quiet little moans. “Quiet, Lida. You wanted to see this.”

“I didn’t know it was like, for real.”


Jesse stepped forward into the room. “Do you know Who I represent?”

The Bible stilled, but tipped so the page could be seen. Jesse didn’t pause. He reached for the Bible and plucked it out of the air. “It appears to be smudged over a passage.” His thumb worked at the dirt that covered the page. “It’s Acts 2:17a. ‘I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh.’”

Laney jumped, her elbow jabbing behind her, hitting



“Lida, I’m sorry.”

“S’okay.” Alida looked up at Jesse. “What does it mean?”

Laney tried to look at Jesse, but couldn’t meet his flat, all-seeing eyes. Anyway, he just looked at the Bible, a line forming between his brows. Laney tugged Alida back toward the police tape and whispered, “It’s from the Book of Acts. I think it was Peter’s words. At the time of the Pentecost.”

“The whatacost?” Alida poked her. “Remember I’m some kind of dumb about the Bible and just tell me what it means.”

Jesse looked up and closed the Bible, but recited, “‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh…’”

Laney shivered and completed the verse, “‘and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams.” So there was the context of her Scripture Box verse. She shivered but looked right into Jesse’s eyes now. He stared at her but she thought he wasn’t seeing her.

Alida shoved Laney aside and passed her hand right in front of Jesse’s face and he didn’t blink; he just kept staring. “Oh, man, this is too end-of-the-world-as-we-know-it, Laney. Will he be okay? Can’t we just, you know, leave him here?”

“You stay right where you are, Alida Johnson.” Laney grabbed her friend’s arm. “Is it possible that this ghost came to my house, Jesse?” Laney trembled and made sure Alida was watching when she touched Jesse’s arm.

He stirred. “Don’t worry. It’s not end of days, Ms. Johnson.” When he looked Alida full in the face, Laney felt her friend’s arm slacken. “Not yet.” He caught Laney’s gaze. She couldn’t look away.

“The ghost can’t leave the place where the old church stood.” His words were reassuring, but his eyes weren’t. She could see a roiling in their depths, a black cloud so deep that it should have seemed cold.

But it wasn’t. Heat reached out from his eyes and seared Laney.

“Oh, Lord.” She had to use her fingers to force her eyelids down, evading his blazing eyes. “Send him to his rest, Pastor Murdoch. He just needs to go home. Please?” A swift touch on her arm and a rustling noise told her Jesse had turned.

She kept her hands over her eyes but peeked out from under them. Jesse was looking away from her, at the transparent figure of a man dressed in garments from well before the Civil War: a long coat, brocade waistcoat and tight pants of fine cloth. This was no poor country parson. Laney

took her hands away from her eyes and moved toward Jesse. “Give him some peace, Pastor.” She touched his arm again.

Jesse looked back into her face. She caught the edge of the seeking heat of his eyes, but he only said, “For you I will do this,” and turned to the ghost.

REMEMBER: Carolina has a contest running on her website for The Entrancement. There are three questions there for readers to answer – two answers can be found in her website and the third is an open-ended question. The first prize is a paperback copy of her murder, magic and mayhem in the middle ages medieval paranormal, Door in the Sky, and a copy of Writing Romance, with romance writing tips from SFA-RWA authors like Barbara Freethy and Karin Tabke (and a chapter by Carolina!). The second and third winners each receive a copy of Door in the Sky. The questions and instructions for the contest can be found at:



JoAnnAinsworth said...

How exciting. Carolina, to have two novels released this year. Best wishes for great success.