Wednesday, April 30, 2014


Guest Post

The lady in the fantastic hat (and precious little else) is Gypsy Rose Lee. She was a vaudeville performer, burlesque dancer, and her mother’s second favorite child (of two). Gypsy put the tease in striptease with an act so unique, so elegant and refined that American journalist H.L. Mencken made up a word to describe it. He called her an ecdysiast, which essentially means “one who molts,” because of her slow, one-feather-at-a-time way of taking off her clothes. In addition to her career as a stripper – no, wait – as an ecdysiast, she was also an actress, a playwright and a novelist. (I believe the phrase you’re looking for is renaissance woman.)

By now you’re probably wondering what any of this has to do with me or my book. That’s a valid question. Here’s what: Gypsy Rose Lee once owned a house in a small town in the lower Hudson Valley region of New York state, which also happens to be my home town. It’s on a main road but it’s set back so far that you can’t see the house when you drive by. All you can see is the sign that spells out the name of Gypsy’s house: Witchwood Manor.

It’s just an ordinary sign, nothing remarkable about it, except that name. It’s so evocative. So mysterious. I remember being a little kid, driving by on the way to the grocery store with my mom, and wondering what it meant. Were there witches in the woods there? Magic? Was there a girl, maybe one like me, who lived there? Was she good or bad or maybe both?

Witchwood Manor has been sitting in my imagination, just waiting for me to figure out the story I wanted to tell about it for a long time. When I started writing Tab Bennett and the Inbetween, I took the name for Pop’s house without a second thought. Then I filled the house with magic and elves instead of witches and added the girl (only she’s a woman now) who would have to figure out if she was good or bad or both before the story could end.

I like to think Gypsy would be OK with that. At least I hope she would. I have a sense that she was exactly the kind of artist I’d like to be: bold, multi-faceted, visionary, and confident enough to take her clothes off in a room full of people and be able to make intelligent conversation while doing so. She’s kind of become my idol and I’d like for her to like what I’ve done with the place.

I’m telling you all this because I want the Witchwood Manor sign. Badly. I’ve wanted it for years. In high school I had a friend who offered to steal it for me. I declined. Last week someone offered to paint a copy for me. I thanked her, but that’s not exactly what I want either. I want that one from out on the road. The only question is, how do I get it – without resorting to petty larceny?

I’m going to work on that.

In the meantime, do any of you know (or are you) the actor Victor Garber? To the best of my knowledge, he’s the current owner of the real Witchwood Manor so I’d imagine he’s the man I need to see.

The Uncovering

Author: Jes Young

Genre: Paranormal Romance / Urban Fantasy

“Tab Bennett is normal — unusually, excessively normal. Her job as a bank teller is safe and secure, her grandfather finally let her move out of the house (at least to the cottage at the end of the driveway), and her fiancĂ© fiercely guards her chastity, whether she wants him to or not.
It's something of a shock, then, when Tab learns that she is the elvish queen of the fabled kingdom of the Inbetween. Also shocking is the appearance of the staggeringly confident and gorgeous elvish warrior who claims to be Tab's true betrothed. Even amidst a steamy love triangle, Tab must tell friend from foe in an unknown world of danger, deceit, magic, and sex.
The first in the Underneath and Inbetween trilogy, The Uncovering sparkles with wit and unadulterated fun.”

Available at: (print)  MP Publishing   Amazon   B&N   Chapters Indigo   Powell's   Indiebound 
(Ebook) MP Publishing   Amazon   B&N   FirstyFish   Kobo   Sony   

Book Excerpt #3 

That night I had a dream that Rivers and I were walking in the deep forest. I wasn’t afraid. She was like a beam of sunlight in the darkness, glowing, leading me by the hand the way she did when we were little. She pointed out rocks that might trip me and held back branches that would otherwise have tangled in my long, dark hair.
“I always protected you,” she said, looking back at me, her eyes big and black. “But you didn’t protect me.”
“I didn’t know how.”
With a shrug, she continued leading me deeper and deeper into the woods. The further we went, the less careful she became about the rocks and the branches. I stumbled and the trees lashed out and pulled at my hair and cheeks. She didn’t seem to care.
“Maybe we should go back.”
“We can only go forward from here.” Her hand was very cold in mine. Icy cold. “Don’t worry,” she whispered. “I’ll protect you from the monsters in this forest. Even though you didn’t protect me.”
Rivers wasn’t glowing with sunshine anymore. She was pale as the moon. She was growing dimmer by the second.
“I want to go home.”
“I’m never going home,” she said.
The trees blocked out the sky. The branches twisted together above us, seeking something that would always be out of their reach. There were birds perched on the limbs, shiny black birds that called to each other with human voices.
home, never going home
“Hush, you silly birds,” she said. “You’ll frighten the queen.”
frighten the queen, frighten the queen. Their call echoed from bird to bird and branch to branch.
“The starlings like you,” she said, looking up into the sea of glossy red eyes above us. “They don’t want the monsters to get you.”
They didn’t look friendly. Rivers didn’t look friendly either.
“Will you let the monsters to get me?” I asked.
She shrugged. “You let them get me.”
frighten the queen, frighten the queen
“I didn’t know about them. I would have protected you if I knew.”
never going home
“That’s a great excuse,” she said, “but I’m still dead.”
“I’m sorry,” I cried. “I’m so sorry.”
She started backing away from me. She spoke in a whisper that grew louder and louder which each word. “There are monsters in these woods. Some of They eat princesses for supper, but most of They prefer to make them suffer.”
The birds took to the sky, flying around us, feathers brushing against my cheek and throat and hands.
suffer, make them suffer
“I’m not a princess,” she whispered, “so what do you think They did to me?”
never coming home
“I’m sorry, Rivers. I’m so sorry.”
The starlings twisted around her, swirling as one, a mass of black wings and ruby eyes.
“Make them suffer,” she said. Her eyes were like the starlings’, glossy and glassy and empty, the deep color of bad blood. The birds drew close around her and then shot off, like a hundred thousand feathered arrows, into the sky.
I woke up in my bed, alone and scared, with tears streaming down my face.

Author Bio 
Jes Young holds a BFA in creative writing from Emerson College. She writes Urban Fantasy and Paranormal romance because, in spite of a complete lack of supporting evidence, Jes still believes in fairy tales, happy endings, and true love.
Links: MPPublishing ~ FB ~ Google Plus ~ Twitter ~ Pinterest ~ Goodreads ~  Website   

No comments:

Post a Comment