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Thursday, October 20, 2016

Barbara Miller- When the Wrong Turn is the Right Turn #ParanormalPleasures @KMNbooks @rebeccajvickery

Let's welcome multi-published author, Barbara Miller!

Karen: Barbara, let's start with you telling the readers a little bit about yourself.

Barbara: I teach in the Writing Popular Fiction graduate program at Seton Hill University and am Reference Librarian at Mount Pleasant, PA Public Library. I have published historical and contemporary romances, mysteries, young adult books, a storybook and a paranormal novel. Two of my plays have been performed at the Pittsburgh New Works Festival.
My husband, Don, and I did indeed move into a derelict house on Halloween in 1983. All the leaks, creaky floors, bats, mice and ghosts have not scared us away yet and we are still working on the house.
Karen: Love houses with character and it sounds like yours it full of personality. :) Tell us your latest news. Do you have any current projects you're working on?
Barbara: I am finishing the fourth in my middle grade series about a foster child, Georgie Jones. I plan to publish all four books in one volume on CreateSpace.
Karen: What is the name of your story and what inspired you to write this tale for the Paranormal Pleasures, 2016 Halloween Romance Collection?
Barbara: Right Turn. It struck me that because of unintended consequences, we never know at the moment we make a decision or turn if it is the right one or not.

About the story, Right Turn:
Without realizing it, a realtor sends both Greg and Lois to the same wrong house. The Mansion has secrets and wounds of its own. Will the mishap end up being the right turn in Lois and Greg’s lives?
At the very end:
The house sighed, the curtains puffing out of its windows even though there was no breeze. I have another family at last: parents, kids, and maybe more in the future. Not to mention a dog and cats. The hole in my heart has been repaired. I feel young again.
Karen:  When you were a child, what paranormal story intrigued you the most?
Barbara: The Headless Horseman. What frantic pacing.
Karen: What do you think makes a good paranormal story?
Barbara: Humor and a twist.
Karen: What is your favorite paranormal movie or book?
 The Sixth Sense. At the end because of one sound we find out everything we assumed about the story is not so. The whole truth comes to us in a shivering wave of realization.
Karen: What makes you interested in the genre you write?
Barbara: Character creation is the magic that drives all my stories regardless of the genre.

Karen: Thank you, Barbara, for being here today and sharing a little about yourself.

Enjoy an excerpt of Right Turn that is featured in Paranormal Pleasures, 2016 Halloween Romances.

Kelly pouted. "Dad, you have no imagination. Here it is, Halloween night, but instead of being at Ashley's party having fun I'm stuck in an actual haunted house."

"Really? It's Halloween?" Greg took his glasses off and wiped them dry
Eric shook his head. "Forget Halloween, Dad. What about basketball season?"

"This weekend is the only time I had to look for a house. I start the new job next week." Greg realized his son was doing his best to understand. They were in a tight spot. Alicia had not agreed to move out of his house when he announced it was time to sell and move on. She’d asked for a divorce and moved as far as the guest bedroom. Greg went through with the house sale. His name was on the deed, so he could. He’d had the movers pack up their furniture and clothes. From his point of view, since they’d been married only two years and she had quit her job to stay home and not really contribute anything, he had a right to sell the house from under her.

Her lawyer didn’t see it that way. Now his lawyer said the court was probably going to award her the money for the house. Greg had to find a place for his family before the property settlement came to court. He couldn’t understand why she bailed on him since she knew he made his living by redoing houses and flipping them. Unless she had planned from the first to dump him and keep the house.

"I can't believe you loaded up our stuff to move, without even a house to change clothes in." Kelly scratched at a ketchup stain on her jeans.

"We can stay in the motel another couple nights and you can start school Monday. If we don't find a place soon the moving company will put our stuff in storage and you won't have clothes to change into. You two stay here and I'll go see what's making that noise."

"No, no, don't split up," Kelly warned. "If you're that curious we'll all go. That's the fatal mistake they make in all horror movies."

"You're the expert," Eric said and winked at his dad.

Greg wondered if uprooting the kids every three or four years was stressing them, but definitely Kelly had watched too many scary movies.

They heard a crash and someone yelling, "Thud. Stop!" They ran into the hall to see a large black creature charge down the steps and leap on Greg, knocking him flat on the floor. A lady in jeans, a sweatshirt and hiking boots hurried down the stairs, grabbed the dog by the collar and yelled, "Thud, stop." The kids stood open mouthed while Greg was licked almost to death.

Greg said, "He slimed me." He looked past the smiling face of the big black dog toward a slender woman with a bouncy auburn ponytail.

"Sorry, he's a wet mouth lab and he just loves people. I thought if I kept him quiet, I could sneak out later undetected. I really just went upstairs to use my phone."

Greg got slowly to his feet, wiping his face with his wet shirtsleeve. "That's okay. I was wet already. Why would you sneak out?"

"No, it's my fault. I should be able to control him. You're probably wondering..."

Eric stepped forward. "Our fault. We invaded your house." He reached a hand out to the dog that fawned at his feet. "So his name is Thud?"

"For obvious reasons. I thought it was your house."

"No we're supposed to meet Maggie from Upton Realty here at six." Greg checked his watch. “It’s just six now.”

"I was supposed to meet her here at five but I was late. I was beginning to think this isn’t the place. It's not as described. But if she gave us the same directions, this must be the house."

"I wonder where the realtor is," Kelly asked as she reached for the dog. Thud whined appreciatively and let her scratch his ears. The thumping of his heavy tail on the floor sounded like a drum beating. “I just hope we don’t find her body stuffed in a closet.”

You can purchase your copy of Paranormal Pleasures at:
Ebook: Amazon / Amazon UK / iTunes / Smashwords /Nook
In Print: Amazon /Createspace / Barnes and Noble

For more information about Barbara Miller and her works, please visit her website.


  1. Thank you for being a guest today and sharing a little bit about yourself.

    The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving is a favorite of mine, too. Loved the Sixth Sense, too.

  2. I love stories where something like the house itself becomes a character in the story. Can you tell in your classes which of the students have that drive, or perhaps obsession, to learn how to write good stories and which are just in there for the credits?

  3. Welcome, Barbara--and I enjoyed your post. While I am not a fan of paranormal, I do appreciate a good story! I liked the "house" excerpt. Much luck with your series. It does sound wonderful.

  4. Hi Barbara. I loved the Sixth Sense, too. The whole idea of a "right" or a "wrong" turn affecting your entire life has always been very intriguing. Love your story.

  5. Oooh, spooky houses always give a story so much character when they seem to be alive themselves. Intriguing thought process behind your story, Barbara, but it certainly rings true.

  6. I read this quote that says "Bad decisions make great stories." I think mistakes fits into that category as well. You have certainly come up with a nice lead into your story, Right Turn, Barbara. I wish you great success with this anthology and many Up-Turns to come in your writing career.


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