Saturday 10 October 2015

October Frights Meets Beyond the Wail

Welcome to the October Frights Blog Hop!

And the Beyond the Wail Blog Tour!

Today, is last day of October Frights, but also the first day of the Beyond the Wail Blog Tour!
So I have a jammed pack post of a spooky spotlight, a review, an interview with one of the authors, Danielle Shipley, two giveaways, and more! Hold on to your hat as I present, the new paranormal anthology from Xchyler Publishing...

Beyond the Wail: 12 Grave Tales of Love and Loss

What is it about fear and the unknown that pulls so passionately at the human heart? Perhaps we are drawn not to the darkness itself, but to the resolution, the overcoming of what we most deeply dread. After all, the more terrible the struggle, the greater the victory when it comes at last. Presented in this anthology are twelve remarkable stories of the darkness that overshadows us, and the resolution that may be found beyond them. They are stories of fear and oppression, but ultimately stories of hope, stories that will take you BEYOND THE WAIL.

Today is the official release of the book!

There are some wonderful stories in this anthology, from a troubled Grim Reaper, mischievous poltergeists, vengeful ghosts, demons, magic, and much more paranormal fun. Here's a quick look and review.

 Beyond the Wail
12 Grave Tales of Love and Loss

OF MICE AND MONSTERS by Tirzah Duncan: Troubled by ghosts within and without, Benjamin struggles to become the man his girlfriend needs instead of the monster he is.

GO GENTLE by Julie Barnson: After the death of her boyfriend, a young musician uses her talents and a fabled violin to stop the fatal accidents at a dead man’s curve.

DEAD WATER by Amanda Banker: A stalled truck, an abandoned graveyard, and a town not found on any map take two brothers on a detour they’ll never forget. 

COLD SPOT by Jay Barnson: When a laptop is stolen from their computer security company, two high school buddies go to extremes to investigate. But, will they manage to return?

THE WEEPING LADY by A. F. Stewart: Eva Douglas must face her mother issues, past and present, when the disappearance of her sister forces a confrontation with a terrifying ghost.

THE POLTERGEIST AND AUNT BETTY by Ginger C. Mann: Aunt Betty is eccentric, but how much is ghost, how much is medication, and how much is just plain crazy?

THE ‘GRIM’ REAPER by L. K. McIntosh: When a soul reaper loses the source of their power,
they must either find the witch who stole it or a new purpose for living.

SHRINE OF MIRRORS by F. M. Longo: A spy on a mission becomes a believer in the supernatural when the theft of three ancient relics threaten to bring down the empire.

DEAD MAN HOCKING by T.N. Payne: A world-weary zombie learns to beware what you wish for, and not all sure bets are worth the gamble.

ST. PETER’S FISH by Alex McGilvery: Sam is a walking disaster of biblical proportions, but how much is he willing to sacrifice to escape, and will the Powers That Be allow it?

THE DIORAMA by Sebastian Bendix: A play set turns life around for Martin Taper, but things take a turn for the worse when he neglects it and the lonely child obsessed with it.

DATE DUE by Danielle E. Shipley: A magic library’s guardian determines to protect her treasured books, whether their authors elect to do things the easy way … or the fatal one.

Review of Beyond the Wail:

Since I’m one of the authors, I’m not going to do an in depth review, but rather give you one or two thoughts on each story.

OF MICE AND MONSTERS by Tirzah Duncan: 
I loved this story. It is powerful, haunting, and so excellently written.

GO GENTLE by Julie Barnson: 
Soft and sadly sweet, like the music that swirls in the story. I enjoyed it.

DEAD WATER by Amanda Banker: 
A terrific story, it pulls you in and doesn’t let go. Nicely engaging and chilling.

COLD SPOT by Jay Barnson: 
A nicely written interdimensional adventure, with some technological twists.

THE WEEPING LADY by A. F. Stewart: 
What can I say about this one? I wrote it. I like it.

A quirky little story, amusing, a little disjointed in spots perhaps, but a fun read.

THE ‘GRIM’ REAPER by L. K. McIntosh: 
An interesting twist on the grim reaper theme, and nicely written. I’m not sure how I feel about the ending, but a great story nonetheless.

I might be a bit biased with this one, as I’m partial to historical fiction, but the author does a skilful job with the myths, legends and history of feudal Japan.

A good solid zombie tale, very entertaining, and some nice depth of character. I liked it very much.

ST. PETER’S FISH by Alex McGilvery: 
I found this one delightfully offbeat, a bit surreal and even philosophical.

THE DIORAMA by Sebastian Bendix: 
This is a quiet story, with a creepy edge that sort of sinks into you as a reader.

DATE DUE by Danielle E. Shipley: 
This author is fast becoming one of my favourites, and she certainly doesn’t disappoint with this story. She weaves her words in a wonderful spell that creates a mesmerizing fantasy story.

Beyond the Wail is available at

Amazon (Kindle)

Amazon (Paperback)


Xchyler Publishing

Book Trailer

And now for our feature interview

Presenting Danielle E. Shipley,
author of Date Due

1. How did you come up with the concept of your story?

I came across an image accompanied by the phrase, “I wish I had a secret library with all the books in the world in it.” My brain’s third reaction – after playing a few bars of the intro from “Into the Woods” and just generally drooling over the thought of ALL THE BOOKS – was to question: Suppose someone had a library full of all the books never written? How far would this bibliophile go to keep the books’ authors from writing them out of his/her possession? I wondered “aloud” on my Facebook page, and multiple responders commented, “You totally have to write this.” My muse seconded the motion, and the “Losers Weepers” theme of Xchyler Publishing’s then-upcoming anthology contest matched my premise perfectly, so I basically had no choice but to get the tale down on paper.

2. How did you come up with the title?

I wanted something equal parts library-related and ominous. “Date Due” – the little phrase seen on library book check-out cards/receipts everywhere – fit both criteria to a tee. Like a librarian’s dark day of reckoning.

3. Please provide some insight into or a secret or two about your story.

One of my inspirations was Edgar Allen Poe’s “The Tell-Tale Heart”. Both Poe’s narrator and mine are anonymous – the text never once gives their names – and both insist throughout the story that they’re not insane, despite the fact that they are blatantly out of their minds. And, y’know, they’re both murderers.

4. What was the most surprising part of writing this story?

It was slightly slow going, for a short story of mine. I can normally knock out a story of this length in a day or two, but this one took me ten. My narrator would not be rushed. She wanted to give me her tale just so, and in her own sweet time.

5. What was the hardest part of writing your story, and how did you overcome it?

The hardest part was titling all of the books the narrator called out by name. Coming up with a title is hard enough for me when I’m familiar with the story in question. To name a book I’ve never read? Horror! Fortunately, once I’d gotten a first draft out of the way, with “[TITLE]” acting as a placeholder wherever necessary, a couple of my best pals were willing to toss out some random options, and I picked and tweaked my favorites from the list to insert into the blank spaces.

Danielle's just for fun nerd Q&A:

Star Wars or Star Trek?

Not into either one. Sci-fi doesn’t generally do it for me.

Hunger Games or Divergent?

I’ve yet to read any of the Divergent books, but the Hunger Games trilogy made an impression on me, for sure.

James Bond or Jack Ryan?

Which one’s closer to Galahad from “Kingsman”? Or Carmen Sandiego?

Sherlock: Robert Downey, Jr. or Benedict Cumberbatch?

Very much enjoyed what RDJ brought to the table, but I’ve got to give this one to Cumberbatch. All my love to BBC’s Sherlock!

Spock: Leonard Nimoy or Zachary Quinto?

Aaaand we’re back to the final frontier. I respectfully abstain.               

X-Men or Avengers?

Mad love for the X-Men, but come on. The Avengers have Captain America. Forgive me, mutants!

Aliens or Predators?

I’d prefer to be preyed upon by neither.

Minions or Penguins?

I’m not sure how far either one would assist my rise to evil overlordship, but I think I liked the trailer for the penguins’ movie better, so we’ll go with that.

Batman or Superman?

Batman. Because we are the night.

Harry Potter or Pirates of the Caribbean?

ARRRRGH! *hoists the colors* *releases the Kraken* *drinks up, me hearties, yo ho* …Which is to say, PotC all the way.

Beatles or Rolling Stones?

Not sure I could even name a single Rolling Stone song. Beatles by default, then?

Peter Jackson or James Cameron?

Raising my glass to he who took me to Middle Earth and back again. Thanks, Mr. Jackson!

Steven Spielberg or George Lucas?

*flips a coin* Spielberg.

Vampires or Werewolves?

I consider vampires to be the more intriguing “what if…?” of a monster.


I’m told that the socializing I do with my characters on a daily basis counts as a live-action roleplay, so we’ve got ourselves a no-brainer!


Danielle E. Shipley’s first novelettes told the everyday misadventures of wacky kids like herself. . . . Or so she thought. Unbeknownst to them all, half of her characters were actually closeted elves, dwarves, fairies, or some combination thereof. When it all came to light, Danielle did the sensible thing: packed up and moved to Fantasy Land, where daily rent is the low, low price of her heart, soul, blood, sweat, tears, firstborn child, sanity, and words; lots of them. She’s also been known to spend short bursts of time in the real-life Chicago area with the parents who home schooled her and the two little sisters who keep her humble.

You can find Danielle about and about the internet at these social media links:


Ebook Giveaway

Today you get another contest! 
Here's the Xchyler Publishing Rafflecopter giveaway for Beyond the Wail.

I’ll be picking the winners in my ebook giveaway tomorrow (and most likely will be posting the name here on my blog tomorrow as well). Xchyler Publishing will be picking its own winners, and they will be contacted after the end of their giveaway.

BEYOND THE WAIL: 12 Grave Stories of Love and Loss

Book Release Blog Tour

Featured Author: Danielle E. Shipley

Danielle E. Shipley

Saturday, October 10, 2015

 Are you Afraid of the Dark?
 John's Writing
 Spreading the Writer's Word

Featured Author: Alex McGilvery

Alex McGilvery

Sunday, October 11, 2015

  Ash Krafton: Emotion Between the Lines
  Scott E. Tarbet, Author
  Writer's Law of Motion

Featured Author: T.N. PAYNE

Nicole Payne

Monday, October 12, 2015

 Melissa McShane, 
 Author Sarah's Secret Stash
 Notes from Author Ginger C. Mann

Featured Author: Ginger C. Mann

Ginger C. Mann

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

  L.K. McIntosh
  J S Brown
  Fairies & Pirates

Featured Author: L.K. McIntosh

L.K. McIntosh

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

  Rampant Games
  Scotty Watty Doodle All The Day
  Terra Luft — View From the Crystal Ball

Featured Author: Jay Barnson

Jay Barnson

Thursday, October 15, 2015

  A Storyteller's Journey
  Creativity from Chaos
  Christine Haggerty

Featured Author: A. F. Stewart

A. F. Stewart

Friday, October 16, 2015

  Tales by Julie
  Perpetual Chaos of a Wandering Mind

Featured Author: Amanda Banker

Amanda Banker

Saturday, October 17, 2015

  Sebastian Bendix
  Alex Campbell
  Semi Short chic

Featured Author: Julie Barnson

Julie Barnson

Sunday, October 18, 2015

  The Ink Caster
  The Road to Nowhere

Featured Author: Sebastian Bendix

Sebastian Bendix

Monday, October 19, 2015

  The J. Aurel Guay Archive

Featured Author: Tirzah Duncan

Tirzah Duncan

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

  Alex McGilvery's World

Featured Author: F.M. Longo

F.M. Longo

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

  Ever On Word
  The Cult of Me

And be sure to give our October Frights bloggers list one last whirl:


Cathrina Constantine said...

Happy Book Release Day!!!!! Looks Spooky Good!!!!

A. F. Stewart said...

Thanks. Having read through the proofs, I can say it's a stellar book, though I might be bit biased.

Unknown said...

Great interview, Danielle, and super book, ladies! Danielle, I best you know the Rolliing Stones. You just don't know it. Like, "You Can't Always Get What You Want" and "Jumping Jack Flash". That said, Beatles all the way!

A. F. Stewart said...

Thanks for stopping by, Penny. You're right it is a super book, and Danielle's story is a real treat.

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