Category Archives: paranormal

Writing Diary Entry #4

June 22 – June 28

This week went to book 3 of my series. And I didn’t actually have a chance to write on it at the end of the week. I didn’t work on the fairy tale at all, and it doesn’t look good for this week either. I received some edits back from my editor, and so that will also go on this list – (it will also be measured as time spent.) So since this isn’t just a rough draft diary entry any longer, I will have a new title for these posts.

Trouble with Men Series book #3 – words written: 4283

What I find interesting about this book (and book 2) is that it wouldn’t exist without The Trouble with Snowmen. The main female character was only mentioned in Snowmen (book 1)  and the main male character has a minor role in The Trouble with Scarecrows (book 2) When I created their characters in the other books I didn’t know they would be the hero and heroine in this book. But while brainstorming they ended up being perfect opposites (which is the Tropes for the series) I’m not a pre-book character profiler – that’s work – yuck, and I have to get them into situations before I know how they will react. I’m over 12k in the book and have learned a lot about them. It has still been somewhat frustrating but I have to remember that frustration is a writer’s BFF. The story also took an unexpected turn. And now I have a few chapters that I have ideas for, which is always good.

YA Fairy Tale Inspired – time spent – 0 hours

Sorry backburner story ….

The Trouble with Scarecrows (book 2 Trouble with Men series) Time spent – 2 hours

I read over the notes and started working on edits for chapter 1 – I have some of my own changes also that I have been comparing with what edits were sent to me.

Love and Laughter,


Spring For Love: blog hop and giveaway – Featuring Author Dale Ibitz

spring for love blog hop Hi friends,

Welcome to the first day of the weekend long Spring for Love blog hop and giveaway!

My guest today is author Dale Ibitz. Dale was born in Oxford, Connecticut, grew up in the state of Washington, and then re-located back to Connecticut as an adult where she studied English at Central Connecticut State University. She never left, choosing Connecticut as her permanent home. Dale’s a fan of hiking and the outdoors, and she never, ever starts the day without chocolate and coffee (preferably together).

What does Dale like most about spring?

“Green. After a long winter of nothing but stark white, love the green that blooms. There’s no other green like spring-green!”

Dale Ibitz’s latest novel Kiss Me Dead is available on Amazon

Dalt Ibitz - KissMeDead

One curse …
Christian, a nineteen-year-old reaper-human hybrid enslaved to the Other World to harvest souls, earns his freedom by making a bargain with the Goddess of Death. As part of the bargain, he’s been cursed with the kiss of death.

One kiss …
The only way Christian can break his curse is for an angel to kiss him. Willingly. He finds Brooke, a nineteen-year-old descendant of a Naphil whose destiny is to hunt rogue reapers. But she’s hiding, suffocating in a semi-agoraphobic cocoon since witnessing a reaper steal her brother’s soul.

Two destinies …
Christian has found the angel who can break his curse, and the seduction begins. To break her phobia’s hold, Brooke embraces her angelic role and makes it her mission to kill rogue reapers, trying to avenge her brother’s murder.

 Christian can break his curse by kissing Brooke dead. Brooke can avenge her brother’s murder by killing Christian. Neither planned to fall in love.


Visit the Spring for Love’s Rafflecopter to find out how you can win a $50.00 Amazon gift card or other fun gifts!  (Enter Here)

Visit Dale Ibitz on the web:

Amazon Author Central

More books by Dale Ibitz:

Last Moon Rising Boxset (Books 1 -3)

Blood Tied (Last Moon Rising #4)

Thanks for visiting! Stop by tomorrow; I will be featuring author Jo Richardson. And make sure to visit all the participating author’s websites for more chances to win and to get the info on new and upcoming titles from Soul Mate Publishing.

Love and laughter,


My Poor Neglected Back-Burner Story

I started writing the rough draft for my Hansel and Gretel inspired young adult book back in February 2010. I’ve worked on it off and on throughout the years – although most of 2014 past without me even opening the file – but my progress keeps getting interrupted by different projects, like in 2012 when the idea for The Trouble with Snowmen (Trouble with Men series summer 2015) hit me, and it wouldn’t let me go until I finished writing it … and then, you know, I had to write book 2 (The Trouble with Scarecrows).

A few months ago, I dusted it off and read over it, and these were some of my thoughts:

  • I should have taken better notes.
  • My rough drafts are more like outlines. Unfinished, vague outlines …
  • It doesn’t matter where I intended this story to go before, it will either come back to me or new ideas (better ones hopefully) will emerge.
  • The concept is solid, I can work with this.

This has been my main project but now I have something else tapping me on the shoulder – book 3 of the Trouble with Men series – But I want to at least get finished with a solid rough draft … or at least take better notes. Well, hopefully one day this poor story will make it to second draft!

Love and Laughter,

Short story for Halloween: Hell’s Kitchen

 This is one of my stranger short stories from some years back, and I thought it would be fun to post it for Halloween. It’s a dark, quirky, moody tale of two men who walk a fine line between good/evil, sanity/madness. 

Hell’s Kitchen

By Dorlana Vann

Part I – The Body

I watched as a guy in a dark suit dug up Beatrice Beaumont Virgil, April 5, 1965 – August 19, 1998. Funeral flowers still fresh, dirt still moist, Until we meet again her epitaph.

I stood in the shadows and dared to watch a moment longer before deciding I would just make note of his car license on my way out. If I had to say, I would guess his height as six feet and give him a generous build of medium. And I would only use this information if there were questions. Otherwise, I’d rather my secret after-hours visits stayed my secret.

As I turned to leave, the moody clouds drifted, allowing the full moon to tattle. I limped away as fast as I could, but my bad knee had started acting up again. I could only hope I was far enough to seem a ghost. Just as I began to breathe, I heard the man shout, “Hey you… stop!”

A gun fired; the bullet ricocheted off the tombstone next to me. I stopped.

“Now, get over here,” he said. “Slowly.”

As I approached the grave-site, I could see that he had dug about halfway down into the grave. He held a shovel in his right hand and a gun in his left. “You’re not going to run are you?” he asked. His appearance seemed rather ordinary— until our eyes met. I’m not easily spooked, but his keen stare alarmed the hair on the back of my neck.

“No,” I said.

He tucked the gun into his pants and then threw me the shovel. “Start digging.”

I dropped the shovel down into the thigh-deep hole and grunted as I followed it inside.

“What are you doing out here this time of night?” he said as he sat down and wiped his brow.

“I’m the groundskeeper.”

“That’s strange. I did my homework; there are no employees at night.”

“I’m not supposed to be here either.” The shovel sank into the dirt easily enough, but my muscles complained when I started shoveling it out of the hole.

“Hmm,” he said. “So, what are you doing here?”

“It’s peaceful at night.”

“So you work here… and come here to hang out? Kind of an eerie guy. But I suppose the right kind… if one has to exhume a body.”

I kept digging, and the man kept watching until the shovel caused a clunking noise.

“All right,” he said. He sat with his legs dangling over the side of the hole. “Now start digging on the sides so we can open my treasure chest.”

When I had finished my task, the man jumped in beside me. It took quite a few hard pushes before we finally had the lid all the way open.

I generally have to be content with a mental image of my residents—unless their loved ones are kind enough to leave me a picture—I couldn’t help but comb my hair with my fingers to tidy up a bit before I met her.

Her long blonde hair flowed gracefully over her petite shoulders. Rosy cheeks and ruby lips highlighted powdered fair skin. “Beautiful.”

POW! I felt the deafening discharge from my fingers to my toes. Beatrice received a bullet hole in the middle of her forehead. I had stopped breathing.

“Hmm,” the grave robber said. “Grab her arms.”


It took him aiming his weapon at me before I comprehended the instructions.

“Grab her arms. I’ll get her feet.”

Heavier than she looked, the first attempts at getting her out of the grave were grotesque. I wanted to lay her back in her bed, fold her arms back across her body… smooth her hair.

Finally, we had her in a somewhat normal position lying in the grass next to her assumed final resting place.

My dilated eyes absorbed a sudden explosion of light. When I regained my vision, I realized the man was snapping pictures.

I couldn’t withhold my curiosity a moment longer. It had fused together with fear and sympathy for Beatrice and formed a knot in the pit of my stomach. “I do realize that this is none of my business, and I really shouldn’t be asking you anything, but…”

“I don’t off chicks,” he said. His chest heaved in and out, just like mine.

“Excuse me?”

“That’s why I’m doing this. That was your question … right?”

I nodded.

He pulled a flask out of his jacket, put it to his mouth, and took a drink. Surprisingly, he handed it to me. As the unexpected bland taste of the pure water quenched my dry tongue, he spoke, “Some asshole hired me to kill a woman. This is just what I do when I’m put in the situation.”

I swallowed hard. The liquid felt like a tank going down my throat. The man standing beside me murdered people for money. And he’d said I was the creepy one … “So you’re going to pretend that Beatrice is the woman you were supposed to kill?”

“Beatrice,” he said and stared down at her. “They don’t want them at their doorstep. All I need is proof. I did a lot of obituary searching to find her. Same facial features, hair color, age.”

“What about the real girl?”

“She’s on a plane as we move our lips.”

We stood there for a moment: the atmosphere thick with the smell of death and the moonlight animating tree shadows across Beatrice’s face.

“So, why did someone want her dead?” I asked.

“Don’t know … didn’t ask.”

I nodded.

“Let’s get her back down,” he said.

The chore of replacing her didn’t take as long as excavating her had, but I hated our method. We just dropped her in.

We climbed in after and put her back in the casket. Except for the bullet hole and the dirt in her hair, she looked like she did before we disturbed her. I said my goodbyes and shut the lid.

When I looked up at the assassin, his jaw was tense and his eyes and gun were focused on me. He said, “You know, I have to kill you now.”

I stopped to inhale the earthy air, to scratch my nose, and to think about my new home with Beatrice Virgil’s address. Until we meet again, my epitaph. “Yeah,” I said. “I know.”

Part II – The Revenge

John knew the old saying: Revenge is a dish best served cold. But he had to disagree. Because this time, his revenge would be cooked and served sizzling hot.

Being the cook for the Beaumont family had definitely been hell, and it seemed as if he had already worked for them an eternity. When he saw his murderer, standing there on the auction block, another saying seemed right on: What goes around comes around.

New arrivals went straight to the auction house. Both demon and H.S.L. (Human Soul Laborers) bought souls for a variety of reasons—the juicier the more they cost. John’s assassin was already up to a stellar price.

The red demon auctioneer had the whole house animated with energy. He was saying, “This soul here has no moral backbone. He killed over fifty men. He’s a thief, a cheater, and a murderer. Do I hear seventy-five….”

When John held up his auction paddle, his assassin looked him in the eyes. John remembered the last time their eyes met. The next thing he knew, he was in hell, standing exactly where this guy stood now. John had committed minor sins in comparison to murder, so buying him to eat would have been like buying a sickly, skinny cow. Not worth eating.

John had been purchased as an H.S.L. by one of the more prestigious demon families. Some souls were bought for pulling wagons, for building roads, for housewives, for…dinner. He understood how lucky he had been that he knew how to cook. His duties included buying groceries at the auction house.

He didn’t win the bid on his murderer just for pleasure; he would also make a fine meal. The Beaumonts planned to have a dinner party for twenty guests. John purchased two other plump souls as well.

When John arrived back at his kitchen, he put the three men into his tall, refrigerated cage. They needed to be fresh. Much longer out in the heat, and they would have been tough. He himself had developed skin close to the texture of leather. He hadn’t lived in Hell long enough to figure it all out, but he reckoned all the demons started out looking the way the human souls did, but in time they adapted to the atmosphere, causing their crimson, rutted skin.

Once John shut the cage, the hit man said, “Funny meeting you here.”

“So, you do remember me.”

“I never forget a face.”

“Of someone you killed or just in general?” John reached in a drawer and pulled out his knife sharpener. He wanted to give this guy the full treatment. At that moment, if he had ever wondered before, he recognized one of the major reasons for his descent. He kept deep hatred in his heart. Hmmm. He began to grind the knife across the sharpener.

His murderer said, “What are you doing here?”

“I’m about to make dinner.”

“I mean, in the hole. I never characterized you for a sinner.”

“We all have our sins. It’s the people who realize it too late that end up down here.”

At this, the hitman nodded his head. “So, what are you making?”

The two other men in the cage looked downright terrified. John looked down at his knife. No matter what kind of show he put on for his murderer, this wouldn’t be any easier than any other meal.

He inhaled and then nodded his head over to the man standing to the right of the murderer. “Leg of Sam,” he said. He glanced at the next guy, “Barbecued ribs.” He looked directly into the hit man’s eyes. “And roasted pig.”

“You don’t have to be so nasty. Just making conversation.”

“Perhaps we should save the small talk for the guests.” Meals had always just stood in the cage awaiting their fate. Once in awhile one would sing or one would cry, but never did he actually have to talk to one before he prepared it.

“For what it’s worth,” his murderer said. “I apologize. I was just doing my job.”

John thought about this for a moment. He wondered if he would have repented if given more time. If he had not been killed at that moment, would it have caused a different finale? He doubted it. Just doing my job. “All right,” he finally said. “I’ll accept your apology. I have an apology of my own.”

“I suppose you do,” the man said.

John said, “You know, I have to cook you now.”

“Yeah,” the hitman said, “I know.”

The End


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 5,461 other followers

%d bloggers like this: