L.J. Holmes

L.J. Holmes
In her many Guises.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012


The Next Big Thing…will it be vampires, bondage or wizardry? Probably not, as lightning seems to choose somewhere different and unpredictable to strike. Like a marriage, every author goes into writing to be wildly successful in creating love and inspiration for her readers, but reality often has something else in mind.

Hop onto this blog adventure through some new reads. For those who are not familiar with a blog hop – it’s like a treasure hunt–once you find something special on one blog you hop over to the next blog to add to that treasure. In this case, the treasure is new and exciting books. Some are still in progress, some just released. Either way, if you are a fiction lover, it’s full of potential treasure. I’d like to thank the very gifted Christine London http://christinelondon.com for tagging me to join in this event.

On this particular hop each author answers ten questions about our work in progress/new release and why we chose to spend our lifeblood and time in cobbling an entire novel about these particular characters and situations. When all is said and done, questions and comments are always welcome. Who knows–maybe your thoughts will contribute to the Next Big Thing.

What is the working Title of your book?

Echoes From The Past

Where did the idea come from?

I'm not really sure. My inner writing voice, Nudge, woke me up with these flashing images that had elements from the Four Corners in the United States and the cave dwellings of the Anasazi, followed by how I, or I guess I should say Nudge imagines Lemuria, a land before Atlantis must have been.

What genré does the book fall under?

If I had to choose one only I'd have to say Paranormal Time Travel. I love working in that genré the most because it allows me to take my books wherever I want them to go without limiting them to just one time frame. Echoes From The Past takes us through two distinct time frames as well as our current time. But Time Travel could just as easily let me catapult my stories into the future and not blink an eye.

What actors would I choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

I'm not really up on who's out there today. The hero, Ahoishmahir, is very Native American in build, coloring, and hair style. The heroine, Kira Firebird, is also Native American and stunningly beautiful even when in the trenches as an archaeologist. I imagine Aho looks a lot like I imagine J.D. Robb's Roarke from her In Death Series looks except for the eyes and skin tone. But the hair and build? Yes. I've seen some rumbling about an IN DEATH movie in the offing. If so, I'm sure the actor chosen to play Roarke would with some minor makeup adjustments make a perfect Ahoishmahir.

What is a one sentence synopsis of your book?

The Universe wants The Sacred Convenant to be unearthed now, but the cost will leave some of them wishing they'd never heard of it.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

A publishing house.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

Not quite a full week. Nudge doesn't let me stop until I've let her pour the whole story out from the first sentence until the words The End come through.Sleep? What's that? Eating? Crackers come in really handy. The rest I'll leave to your imaginations.

What other books would you compare this story to written within your genré?

Constance O'Day Flannery did a lot of Time Travel books, but I don't think any of hers went back to a period such as Lemuria. There is no recorded history of Lemuria. Like Atlantis that received its strongest support from the words of Plato, Lemuria is that mythical possibility of what man might have been and might still become.

What other books inspired you to write this book?

Again, I'm a fan of Constance O'Day Flannery, but I also read Many Mansions by Dr. Gina Cerminara about the life of Edgar Cayce. His conflict over his psychic talents and his core beliefs  made me think mankind must have lived Atlantis and Lemuria but our memories cannot contain all of the details...not and live with today's societal structures...so we weave them into myth and legend.

What else about this book might pique your reader's interest?

Many of us have unresolved feelings of conflict from the way our parents acted when we were children. Imagine the Universe lets you be in the driver's seat and your parent must now respect and follow orders from you! Kira gets to live out that fantasy when her father's spirit volunteers to come down in the form of a wolf to protect her from the danger her mission stirs to life...and she tongue-in-cheek names him Boomerang.



The Dawn of the Anasazi Return

Kira pulled herself back from the images alive within her mind and rose from her computer arching her back till she stretched the last of the cricks from her body. Her report on the absurdity of the Indian Wars made her feel so many emotions she never rose from her latest archaeological research without feeling the weight of hopelessness and helplessness bear down upon her much as the albatross must have weighed upon the Ancient Mariner from classic literature.

Turning towards her trailer she’d taken two steps when she felt it. Lifting her head at a querying angle, she aimed her attention across the desert scrub. They’re coming! Her spine tingled, her heart raced, and her breath caught.

Not yet, no not while the sun seared, but tonight, when the moon bathed the land and the nocturnal creatures began their nightly foraging. Then they’d come. She stifled a shiver. Ghostly impressions of events from long ago were one thing, but real ghosts? Once more she tamped down on the shivers goose bumping her skin, straightened her spine and continued walking towards her trailer, but stopped, and spun around once more.

When she first made the decision to become an archaeologist she’d been all of three-years-old, but the tug of the Ancients had been too strong, even back then for her to ignore. While other kids gathered around a rain puddle making and throwing mud pies, she scampered off with her little hammer, borrowed, sort of, from her father's tool chest, pulverizing rocks so she could catalog how they looked on the inside, and communing with those unseen by many.

These dubiously feminine hobbies grew into trying to dig her way to China when she turned seven. Her aunt hadn’t thought highly of Kira’s excavation skills, especially when she stumbled into one of those sites late one night. Kira’s ears still burned with the memory of the nasty words her aunt shrieked.

When college loomed in the picture, she’d already wrangled her way onto more digs than people three times her age. There among the remnants of what had been she also discovered she’d inherited more than just DNA from her Shaman grandmother. Seeing ghosts, some just impressions of past carnage, some the real, fluttering specters, did not make her a comfortable woman to hitch your wagon to.

She is very conscientious about her career direction, keeping the crazy side of her spirit a closely guarded secret. She maintains the greatest respect for traditions and the sacredness of The People, including their mystical side; she also possesses a voracious appetite for knowledge. In short, she is royally cursed by a past often setting her apart from the rest of her family’s need for her to be normal.

Kira turned away from the distant scrub and the tingling precursors of ghosts to come, once more, determined not to be pulled back into the otherness of that world, for now. She walked slowly the rest of the way to her travel trailer parked just a few feet away. Inside, she reached into the tiny refrigerator, withdrawing a cold can of diet cola. Flipping open the pop top, she tipped it back letting the sparkling coldness bathe her throat. A lot of her work had to be conducted in very hot places, and this site was no different.

Here, she was seeking answers about the truest of the known ancients, the Anasazi, but as she dug for the evidence of their origins, she had to also complete the written work on her last assignment, the Lakota, committing their stories to text. Once done she could finally put those ghosts to rest and finally move on.

Her body trembled with the remembering of the events her agile mind witnessed at the battle sight.

She’d driven to the setting of that historic blood bath three weeks ago, closed her eyes and allowed her subconscious to pick up on the echoes of the battle still clinging, a residual nightmare, to the surrounding landscape. She felt the anguish and hopelessness of both sides in that confrontation like it happened right then. Neither side wanted what happened, yet due to mistrust, some earned, and some not, what happened was inevitable. She longed to finish writing this section on that skirmish so she could put to rest the deep despair that always overtook her when she tuned in on so much tragedy and pain.

Crumbling the empty can, she tossed it into the recycling bag, grabbed her sun hat and headed back to her laptop computer. During the daylight hours, she preferred being outside, either digging, or like today, working at her laptop while perched at her picnic table. The solitude of her lifestyle pleased her in ways her family could no more understand than they could understand anything else about the oddity she’d been born to be.

The approaching wisps of nightfall forced her to close the laptop and think about her grumbling stomach. Did she dare put food on it, knowing what is coming? Ghosts make you lose your appetite quite easily, and she had a feeling the ghost heading her way this evening would be great for her diet, but horrible for every one of her neurons.

Inside the trailer, she flipped on the lights. A diversion, she needed one. Over by her bed space, she turned the knob on the tiny TV set she rarely watched, but brought along for background noise. Some evening soap opera quickly filled the screen with impassioned sighs and whimpers making her just as quickly switch the darned thing off again. Grabbing a sandwich she headed back outside to watch the stars come out instead.

The distant silhouettes of the mesas seemed like dark sentinels standing guard over her as she devoured the ham sandwich, washing it down with more diet cola. She ignored the turbulent rumblings in her stomach, listening to the natural songs of wolf and coyote in the distance with a soft smile of forced contentment.

The cool of the night is always a welcomed relief from the burning blaze of the daytime sun, but soon shivers began racing up and down her spine. She could con herself into thinking these were normal shivers from a cold breeze, but she knew better. These chills were far more specific. The ghost is here.

Keeping her eyes focused on the land between herself and the mesas, she saw the air begin shimmering and palpitating. She once likened this portion of the process to the image one sees on a hot day in the city when the heat radiates up from the scorching pavement, but those shimmering waves did not sparkle, nor did they coalesce into form. These do.

The woman floating now before her in the silvery glow of a moonbeam could be nothing but an eternal one: a super ghost. Her face wore the patina of wisdom and the beauty of all the eras gone by and many yet to come. Her long flowing mane, dark with strands of pure silver highlights, fluttered in the strange breeze no one else could feel. The spirit's eyes reflected the silvery brilliance of the moon, but instinctively Kira knew this is not the true color of this messenger's eyes.

She dressed in pure, buttery-white doeskin that seemed to magnify and project the pure aura of her serene energy. Adorning that magnificent fall of ebony fluttered an immaculate white eagle's feather aiming toward the star blanketed sky above, a symbol of her position in the hierarchy of the spirit world.

Respectfully, Kira maintained the highly charged silence, waiting for The Eternal One to speak. Still in the distance the coyote brayed and the wolf howled. Closer, the sound of a scuttling thing, perhaps a prairie dog, scratched sound designs on the near desert floor. With Kira’s heightened awareness of this moment, came the almost simultaneous floating of The Eternal One as she came closer.

The apparition stopped less than two feet from where she sat. Looking up, noting she’d been right about the true color of The Eternal One's eyes, she silently praised her inner awareness…it rarely let her down, were darker than the finest obsidian and far more reflective than black jade.

"They told me you would not run." The Eternal One finally said.

Although she heard every word the specter said, understanding isn’t conducted through spoken word, but through the awareness of one’s own mind speak.

"I was raised to honor visits from the spirit world, by my grandmother." she explained, which is partially true. Her grandmother taught her to respect the wisdom of the souls that had gone before. It had been her father who preferred she keep her feet planted firmly in the world of the Anglo, and fought her spirit side every step of the way.

"You had to be prepared for us and for your own destiny, the good, and the bad parts of it.” The Eternal One said, as if hearing Kira’s thoughts, which she probably did. “Your grandmother knew this and knew you would have an uphill battle against the prejudices of those who refuse to honor the old ways. Now the time has come for you to fulfill your destiny and bring about the change. The Anasazi are ready to rise and through you they will lead the way."

Kira's eyes widened. "Me?"

"You walk the world with foot in the ways of the Hopi, but you carry the ancient seed of the Anasazi in your veins. Why do you think you could never conform to the wishes of your father? The drum beat of the Ancient Ones pulsates in your soul. The memories of the people are indelibly imprinted upon your core essence, Kira FireBird, and now your time is here. You are to find the Sacred Covenant entombed by the Ancient Ones and bring back to the people the Way of the Path."

"What sacred covenant? I've never heard of anything like that."

"Of course you haven't because the time has not been right for the reawakening. Sealed within an entombed burial site of the Ancient Ones you will find the Sacred Covenant. You and you alone can locate and release it. You have the memory within your soul that will tell you when you’ve found the right place. But you must be alert to the danger accompanying this quest.

“The script you will be searching for will change the face of the future, and not all want this script found. You will be presented with protectors from our side of the veil, but they can only protect you so far. Sometimes the one we most need protection against is ourselves, Kira FireBird, and that is something we cannot intercede to protect you from."

She shook her head, confused. "I do not understand."

"You are very wise, Child of The Ancient. You have always allowed your feelings to guide you. They will guide you now too. Trust your intuitiveness. There are many masks in this world of the flesh. Only the soul sees things with purity of vision.

“Tonight, as you sleep, you will be given more instructions. Some of them will filter into your consciousness immediately; some will remain buried and only speak when you listen to your intuition. Heed your inner voice, child. Heed the voice of those from our side who will guide you. Both our worlds are depending on you Kira Bird of our Fire. You must not fail."

"Can you tell me where to look?" she asking knowing as the word left her, this quest belonged to her and only her.

"Out there," The Eternal One responded pointing to the land as far as the eye could see and then some. "Do not worry. You will feel the vibrations when you are close. That is a part of the seed within you. I must leave now, but before I go, remember this, we will be with you in flesh forms, so look upon every creature with more than your flesh eyes. Look with your soul eyes and recognize your spirit guides."

As magically as the Eternal One appeared, she slowly vanished leaving behind highly charged ethereal ions that kept Kira's skin tingling for many hours afterward.

She remained in her chair staring into the vast, darkened void of out there for a very long time lost in thought. How would she ever be able to find the Sacred Covenant when there are several known Anasazi sites and no doubt many yet to be discovered? Where does one begin to look for the literal needle in a haystack?

"Trust your knowingness." the voice on the very slight breeze echoed back to her.

Trust her knowingness? Ever since she was little, she knew she’d been born gifted and cursed with this extra inner awareness allowing her to pick up on signals most people could not recognize. She seemed to understand the seemingly incessant bird-speak greeting everyone each morning, but few could interpret. When the winds howled, few heard the cadence of tone translating into messages for the scurrying creatures below. Even the pattern of the clouds could tell the alert observer of things yet to come. Now more than ever, she would need to rely on all these resources as she undertook her new quest.

She fell into a deep sleep that evening while immersed in silent prayer, overwhelmed by the enormity of what she’d been called upon to undertake. Do I have the skills to unearth the Native equivalent of the Shroud of Turin; And what of the danger that’s bound to accompany me? What if I succumb to some curse as those who opened the Tomb of Tutankhamen did?

No, not as long as she stayed true to her beliefs. God and her many guardians would watch over her. The Eternal One said "Sometimes the one we most need protection against is ourselves."

She would not allow her apprehensions and doubts defeat her. She would trust in the wisdom of the Creator. He would not send an Eternal One to her if He himself had not fashioned Kira for this job. She wouldn’t let Him down, nor would she let the future of her people miss out on the Covenant. She would find the Sacred Covenant, protect it, and see to it the knowledge carried within it is made known to the world.

Once again I want to thank Christine London for inviting me to participate in this blog hop.

My daughter author Kat Holmes and I are coming into this game late, so many of the people we would have recommended hopping on next week have already made this hop. However there are some authors I know  are far too busy to take the time from their other duties to find the time to do participate, so if you'll forgive me from taking some licence allow me to name just a few books I have read that may not be the next lightning strike but are most striking:

Cyrus Keith---> Technology is his forté with the creation of THE NADIA PROJECT SERIES. What do you do when you think you're human but find out you're a well manufactured killing machine who doesn't want to kill? BECOMING NADIA is the first in this powerful series.

Glenn Kleier wrote THE LAST DAY before the Da Vinci Code became the rage. He's since added THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOOD AND EVIL. His writing is so powerful and memorable. A lightning bolt? I know it hit me like a lightning bolt.

Kevin Hopson writes some of the best short story suspense stories I have EVER read. His most recent THREE MILES BELOW still has chills racing up and down my spine.

Lea Schizas, my publisher at Muse It Up Publishing is also a very prolific author. Her most recent ROCK OF REALM is aimed at the youth audience, but I guess even with hair as silver as mine, I qualify as part of the youth audience. It's an amazing fantasy adventure.

And too all...Happy Reading!

1 comment:

Christine London said...

I adore time travel and the concept of being able to interact with your parents--just great!

The Next Best Thing!