This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Arial will be awarding a $15 Amazon or BN Gift Card (winner's choice) to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour. Also, at every stop a randomly drawn commenter will be awarded a 5-Star Short Story eBook, Romance Trading Card set and signed Bonded By Blood series post card. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.
It’s Raining Books – I LOVE that! What a fantasy come true! It’s pretty close to being a reality for me and most readers I know…so many books, so little time! Gah! Regardless, I’m happy to be here today to hopefully throw another few books onto that TBR pile!
I won’t elaborate about my stories since that information is included in this post. Instead, I’m happy to share…
I Love Snakes
I know! Most people cringe when they hear the “S” word mentioned, and honestly I did too before I actually owned one. As much as I dislike my ex-husband, I do have to credit him for introducing me to reptiles. He had a red-eared slider (water turtle) and I had so much fun learning how to take care of it, we got another one. Then, for his birthday, I bought him a red-tail boa constrictor. He named it Samson (after the Bible character), but we later found out it was girl! Since I was home most of the time, I ended up being the one to take care of her. I seriously did not want to do this, but since she was only about 10 inches long and the width of my index finger, she wasn’t as intimidating as a full-grown snake.
I was told that in order to ensure a snake didn’t grow up aggressive (aka bite you), it needed to be handled…OFTEN. GAH! Okay…so I took her out of her tank almost daily, held her…and actually started to like it. Her skin was smooth and since they’re cold-blooded, they love to cuddle. I know, I know…people are afraid of cuddling with a constrictor. The truth is, they won’t squeeze you to death unless they consider you a meal. And quite frankly, we’re just too big for them to eat. Now, an anaconda…that’s a different story.
Anyway, Sammy and I got to know each other and as she grew, it became easier for me to carry her around. And since she loved my body heat, she would wrap around me and then fall asleep. What surprised me the most was I actually loved this animal like I loved a cat or a dog! I know…weird, right? I’d have her around my shoulders, her tail wrapping around me and curling onto my belt loop at my waist, while she would actually push her head through my French braid and rest her little noggin on the top of my head and just fall asleep. I’d do housework, laundry and write…all the while she was hanging around. It was great!
I Used to Sing Professionally in Chicago
It wasn’t anything major and I’m no Christina Aguilera, but I could hold my own on the stage. I used to sing a lot of old standards in cocktail lounges when smoking was still allowed inside. Sometimes I would have a band or a piano accompany me, but most of the time it was recorded music, similar to singing Karaoke, but without the screens. I still love to sing Karaoke and my husband is my best supporter. Some of my favorite tunes to sing are Black Velvet (Alannah Myles), New York State of Mind (Billy Joel), This Masquerade (George Benson), Love Shack (B52’s), Bring Me To Life (Evanescence), Think (Aretha Franklin), some Cole Porter, Barbara Streisand…and so many others.
I Was a Software Instructor for Fifteen Years
Yep…I used to teach people how to use computers, from basic computer skills to graphic programs and MS Excel. I was the IT Training Manager for 20th Century Fox and Sony Pictures Entertainment, and my job was to manage all the Desktop software training for the company. I did scheduling, maintained training room computers, tested network connectivity to ensure all my computers had network access, blah, blah, blah! This was my first job as a writer, too. I have written over 50 training manuals, not counting online tutorials, brochures, marketing materials and dozens of websites.
My favorite part of training was teaching people something new. The ooos and ahhhs when someone learns a new skill is music to my ears! The sparkle in their eyes…priceless! In fact, I come from a family of teachers, so it’s in my blood! My mom was a history teacher and her parents were school counselors and general education teachers. I love to share a good thing and I have an aptitude for teaching people just about anything. The first classes I taught were in the crafting industry – knitting, crochet, tole painting, wood working and wood burning. And if all goes well, I’ll start teaching some classes for the San Diego’s Writer’s group in the fall – self-publishing classes on how to format and publish books, show versus tell, and many others.
I’m a Certified Hypnotherapist
Hypnotherapy is something that has always interested me and it was a dream career for me until I realized how many people were afraid of being hypnotized! I was very shocked at how difficult it was to get clients. Usually the first question someone asks me is, “Are you gonna make me cluck like a chicken?” My response is, “Not on the first visit.” Ba-doom-CHEE! I’ll be here all week! Try the tofu and don’t forget to tip your servers. Though it was always a laughing matter, further conversation revealed people thought they were going to lose control when they were hypnotized. It’s simply not true, but stage hypnosis has taught everyone that people do crazy things when they’re hypnotized. In reality, stage hypnosis is just an excuse for people to act silly. If you don’t want to do something when you’re hypnotized…you won’t. Period.
I’m a US Air Force Veteran
Yep! I’m proud to say I served my country as a Sergeant in the United States Air Force and I served in Desert Storm during the Gulf War. I was also divorced twice…which means I’ve seen combat three times. Doh! I gotta million of ‘em! Anyway, I was a Ground Radio Maintenance Technician (30454 for those who know an AFSC is) and basically fixed and operated the radios and antennas that communicated with aircraft from the ground. I was part of the 39 SOW (Special Operations Wing) and was stationed at Rhein-Main AB in Frankfurt, Germany. I was also stationed at RAF Alconbury in the UK, about 60 miles north of London. Boy do I miss Europe! My husband and I plan on moving overseas once we’re retired (in about 5 years…early retirement for us – woo hoo!). I can’t wait!!
So there ya have it! I’ll be available if anyone has any questions about those fun little facts or about my Bonded By Blood Vampire Chronicles. And if anyone has any questions for my characters, they are known to come out and play…even for a little bite!
Thanks so much again for having me as a guest today! Mwah!
About the Author:
Find Arial at her website, Facebook, Twitter, or her Amazon author page. To see images of her characters, see her board on Pinterest.
Widow of an abusive husband, Davina Stewart-Russell clings to the only image that gave her strength during those dark times—the Gypsy rogue who stole her heart as a youth. After nine years, she is finally face-to-face with him again, but reality clashes with fantasy as she is confronted with Broderick’s passionate pursuit.
When Davina’s past returns to haunt her, Broderick is forced to reveal a dark secret worse than anything Davina thought possible. The challenge before them has fatal risks and neither of them is prepared for the sacrifices expected for the sake of eternal love.
After being away at fencing school for seven years, James Knightly has returned as a master swordsman, ready to captain his own ship and finally wed his childhood sweetheart, Cailin MacDougal. What he finds waiting for him is a dagger-toting hellion for a bride, an immortal father-in-law, and an enemy bent on extracting revenge by threatening the family James holds most dear--the MacDougals.
Broderick MacDougal is lured away from his family with the promise of-at last-learning a way to protect those he loves from his clan enemy, Angus Campbell. Broderick knows he's headed for a trap, but the bait is too tempting to resist...and he unravels the beginning of a prophecy that will lead to redemption for all vampires. The cost of such redemption, though, may be the very soul of the woman he would die for...his wife, Davina.