Cate: Please help me welcome Nicole Zoltack to my special Halloween celebration. Nicole, please tell us a little bit about yourself.
Nicole: Well, I have a wonderful husband and three young boys (almost 4, 2, and 7 months-the youngest is crawling already, I'm in so much trouble!) I love writing and reading, especially fantasy/paranormal, and now I'm choosing spookier stories to read, of course!
Cate: Whew! You are in trouble! :) What do you love most about Halloween?
Nicole: I love the creativity of costumes, the chance to pretend to be something I'm not. Which is probably a reason why I love to write!
Cate: Do you have a favorite memory of a Halloween past?
Nicole: Honestly, I think this Halloween will probably be my favorite since it'll be the first time we'll take the boys trick-or-treating. :)
Cate: Have you ever had an unusual experience you couldn’t explain?
Nicole: Yes, exactly. Several times before bed during college, I was trying to fall asleep and so had my eyes closed. I could feel a presence in the room but was too terrified to open my eyes. My body would then start to tremble uncontrollably--I couldn't stop my limbs from shaking. It only lasted for about fifteen seconds, but it happened enough times that I know it was something real--as if my body knew more than my mind that something evil was in the room with me. It freaked me out each time.
Cate: How frightening! But what frightens you the most?
Nicole: I'm most scared of dying, actually. But the idea of creatures of the night is pretty scary too!
Cate: Ever gone on a ghost tour? Or ghost hunting on your own?
Nicole: No, but I did go on a vampire tour in New Orleans. That was fun, to walk around late at night and see different buildings were vampiric-like crimes had happened.
Cate: Very cool! Any favorite Halloween recipes you’d care to share?
Nicole: Witches' Eyeballs. Simple enough to make, all you need are 2 11-ounce bags of white chocolate chips, 12 doughnut holes, semisweet chocolate chips, and a tube of red frosting. Melt the white chocolate chips over low heat. Spear each doughnut hole with a fork and submerge it into the melted chocolate. Coat it, then tap off the excess. Cut off the point of a semisweet chocolate chip and stick the cut side into each doughnut hole to make the pupil. Allow the chocolate coating to harden. Use the red frosting to add squiggly veins.
Cate: Love it! Thanks for sharing. :) Tell us about your latest release, and where readers can find it online.
Nicole: Well, Woman of Honor is available in print format now (through me, through Amazon soon!) but I'll share a more appropriate story for Halloween. Seeing for the First Time is the story of a girl named Ana whose summer is about to become a lot more dangerous when she discovers that she can see a creature that no one else can see. Seeing for the First Time is available through all digital stores including Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Seeing-First-Time-What-ebook/dp/B004R1Q4XA/ref=la_B00304YARW_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1348873731&sr=1-7
Cate: Care to share a blurb or excerpt?
Nicole: Ana ran into the cottage and changed into a T-shirt and jeans. She stood at the back screen door, wrestling her long curly blonde hair into a ponytail when she saw small red, purple, and blue lights flying around her Gram.
Ana rubbed her eyes and looked again. The lights were still there.
She gulped. Maybe being crazy ran in the family.
Ana opened the door and slowly walked over to Gram.
Gram looked up. "Is something wrong, dear?"
Ana shook her head.
Gram pushed back on her thighs. "Your face says differently. If you really want to go to the beach that badly, go ahead."
A small red speck landed on Gram's hand. Ana stared at it, afraid to speak, not wanting to draw attention to her craziness.
"Oh," Gram said with understanding in her soft voice. Her face broke into a wide smile that eased many wrinkles. "You can see the fairies, too."
Ana shook her head again. "N-no."
"Now don't be shy, my dear. I'm so glad to be able to introduce you to my friends. This is Arianna." Gram held up her hand, still holding the red light.
Ana stared. She couldn't see a fairy. "I only see red light," she whispered.
Gram frowned at the red light in her hand. "What's that, Arianna? Oh, I see." She glanced up at Ana. "Ana, you aren't a fairy seer after all."
"A fairy seer?" Ana sat next to her Gram, enthralled. Gram hasn't been talking to herself all these years; she's been talking to fairies! A purple light speck floated over and landed on Ana's lap.
"Yes. Friends of the fairies. You see, Ana, there is a whole other world within our own, but only precious few know of it. Our family has a proud tradition of seeing beyond the veiled mist that separates our worlds."
"Our family? You mean mom and dad, too?"
"Why, yes. They aren't in Europe for a vacation as they told you. A band of suspicious animal attacks in England and Ireland have them suspecting werewolves."
Ana gasped. The purple light crept toward her hand and landed in her palm. She could feel strange energy, magic, and it both excited and scared her. "Werewolves? Why are mom and dad going up against werewolves?"
"Seers can typically only see one creature. Mine is fairies. Your parents see werewolves. We don't know what you'll see yet." Gram clapped her hands. "I have waited so long for this day! I so hope it's a peaceful creature like dryads or unicorns."
Cate: What inspired you to write about the theme?
Nicole: Since not everyone believes in creatures of the night, I started to think about what it would be like if there was a world in which only certain people saw them. And I swear I wrote this story before Grimm was aired! lol
Cate: I love that show! :) Anything else you’d like to share?
Nicole: Halloween is a great time to have fun, but be safe too!
Cate: Woo hoo, Nicole has a giveaway!
Nicole: To win a PDF copy of Seeing for the First Time, leave a comment with your email address and a Halloween costume--one you've worn in the past, what you're going to wear this time, what you would love to dress up as one year.
Cate: Fun! Thanks so much for sharing in the Halloween fun, Nicole!
Here's a spooky story, supposedly for kids but it scared the bejeebies out of me, lol