Tag Archives: guest blog

Guest Author Catherine Cavendish on ‘Waking the Ancients’

Welcoming back Guest Author Catherine Cavendish to the blog today, with a fascinating post on her new book Waking the Ancients. Take it away Cat!

Set – God of Chaos, Friend of the Dead

My new novel – Waking the Ancients – centres on a sinister archeologist called Dr. Emeryk Quintillus and his deadly obsession with the last Egyptian Pharaoh – Cleopatra. His quest to possess her immortal spirit leads to his involvement with a major ancient Egyptian deity – the god Set.

Dangerous, unpredictable – but a good friend to have in a crisis, Set was one of the most ancient of the Egyptian gods – and exceptionally well connected.

Brother of Osiris, Horus the Elder, Isis and Nephthys, he was the god of storms, chaos, earthquakes, and all manner of natural disasters, but he was also a friend of the dead, helping them to ascend his ladder to transport them to heaven and he protected desert oases. He was unhinged in many ways and prone to extreme violence, right from the time he lay in his mother’s womb. Instead of waiting to be born naturally, legend has it that he ripped himself from his mother’s body.

Married incestuously to his sister, Nephthys, he was the antithesis of everything she represented. He was the earth, she was the air. He represented the desert and, as such, was infertile. She, on the other hand, had designs on her much more handsome brother Osiris who was married to Isis (evidently, they liked to keep everything in the family – a trait they shared with the Cleopatra’s Ptolemaic dynasty, among others). One day Nephthys disguised herself as Isis and seduced Osiris who, it is said, did not realise he had been tricked. A child, the god Anubis, was conceived out of this union and that is when the trouble really began.

When he found out about her infidelity, Set was enraged but decided to wreak his vengeance on his sibling rather than his faithless wife. He already had form in attacking his brothers. In a power struggle for control of Egypt which lasted eighty years, Set plucked out one of Horus’s eyes. Horus responded by ripping off one of Set’s testicles. Now that’s what I call a dysfunctional family!

Set was determined to kill Osiris and enlisted the help of his followers into tricking his brother. Set laid on a great feast in honour of Osiris and presented him with an elaborate chest which he said he would give to whichever guest fitted into it. One after the other tried, but failed. Then Osiris had a go and, of course, it fitted perfectly. Before he could escape, Set’s followers nailed it shut and tossed it into the Nile.

A distraught Isis found it, brought it home but was unable to prevent Set from taking it from her. He opened the chest and dismembered the body which was intact – except for his penis which had been eaten by a fish in the river. Set then scattered his body parts all over Egypt. Isis and Nephthys began searching for the pieces of Osiris’s body and reassembled them. Even without his penis, Isis managed to somehow magically conceive a son – another Horus.

There was another side to Set. On a positive note, he was the protector of the sun god Ra, who made his nightly journey in a barque across the heavens to rise again in the morning. But even in his role of protector, Set could not resist his evil side. He threatened Ra with storms if he did not treat him in the manner to which he felt was his due. Ra tired of his threats and expelled him from his barque. Other gods would assume his role.

In Wrath of the Ancients – Set’s role is pivotal. The obsessed Emeryk Quintillus enlists his help, but a terrible price must always be paid…

Waking the Ancients

Legacy In Death

Egypt, 1908

University student Lizzie Charters accompanies her mentor, Dr. Emeryk Quintillus, on the archeological dig to uncover Cleopatra’s tomb. Her presence is required for a ceremony conducted by the renowned professor to resurrect Cleopatra’s spirit—inside Lizzie’s body. Quintillus’s success is short-lived, as the Queen of the Nile dies soon after inhabiting her host, leaving Lizzie’s soul adrift . . .

Vienna, 2018

Paula Bancroft’s husband just leased Villa Dürnstein, an estate once owned by Dr. Quintillus. Within the mansion are several paintings and numerous volumes dedicated to Cleopatra. But the archeologist’s interest in the Egyptian empress deviated from scholarly into supernatural, infusing the very foundations of his home with his dark fanaticism. And as inexplicable manifestations rattle Paula’s senses, threatening her very sanity, she uncovers the link between the villa, Quintillus, and a woman named Lizzie Charters.

And a ritual of dark magic that will consume her soul . . .

You can find Waking the Ancients here:

Kensington Press

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

Apple

Google

Kobo

About the Author:

Following a varied career in sales, advertising and career guidance, Catherine Cavendish is now the full-time author of a number of paranormal, ghostly and Gothic horror novels, novellas and short stories. Cat’s novels include the Nemesis of the Gods trilogy – Wrath of the Ancients, Waking the Ancients and Damned by the Ancients, plus The Devil’s Serenade, The Pendle Curse and Saving Grace Devine. She lives with her long-suffering husband, and a black cat who has never forgotten that her species used to be worshipped in ancient Egypt. She sees no reason why that practice should not continue. Cat and her family divide their time between Liverpool and a 260-year-old haunted apartment in North Wales.

You can connect with Cat here:

Catherine Cavendish

Facebook

Twitter

Goodreads

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Guest Author S.E. Sever introduces ‘Mash Stories’

beforemecoverHanding over the Frazerblog today to my good friend, author S.E. Sever, who has started an inspired (and inspiring) short story contest at her new website Mash Stories.

Read S.E.’s post below for more about this exciting new venture!

About Mash Stories

Are you one those people who have to align a tilted frame on the wall? Have you ever found yourself folding a piece of paper to stick it under a wobbly table?

If so, you’d know the instinct – and the pleasure – of correcting things that are desperate to be corrected. And Mash Stories is born exactly from this instinct.

I remember the day I looked into the short story competitions market for the first time. I found a website which listed competitions: The Grinder. At the time, there were over 2,300 competitions listed on The Grinder, and 28,638 submissions had already been made. I felt like a kid who had been taken to an astonishing playground with the queue of an airport security check.

In the time that has elapsed since then – roughly five months – the number of submissions on The Grinder website has nearly doubled – 42,668 as of 9th April 2014.

The number of competitions left me not knowing where to start from, and the number of submissions made me anxious about the vast amount of competitors out there. I wasn’t ready to race against writers who had already won awards, while I simply had no publishing experience.

I had assumed short story competitions would allow me to get my voice heard, gather a circle of readers, and earn small amounts now and then to support my writing. But to start with, I was asked to pay to submit my work. And when a magazine accepted to publish a story of mine, they offered me less than their submission fee for the ‘exclusive’ rights to my work. I thought there was a typo there, but apparently there wasn’t.

That was when I decided to fold a piece of paper to stick it under the wobbly market of story competitions. I knew I couldn’t write to more than 7,000 competitions listed in the endless waters of the Internet and tell them my point, but I could set up a competition which would stand straight no matter how tilted the others were.

That’s how Mash Stories was born. I dreamt of a competition that evaluated my story, instead of its formatting; that paid me reasonably, rather than charging me fees; that gave me free feedback and helped me to promote my work, rather than demanding exclusive rights to limit it.

At Mash Stories, we keep the rules to a minimum and award the winning story a professional rate. We turn all shortlisted stories into a podcast, and provide free feedback for the rejected ones so that they can improve.

I hope our efforts will help the talented writers out there to get their voices heard. And I hope you will help us to set up a model competition, which will create a change in many writers’ lives.

Please support us by donating to us or by giving us a hand with editorial matters.

Thank you for your interest and support.

S.E. SEVER

About S.E. Sever:

S.E. Sever  is currently working on several projects in fantasy fiction and science fiction.
She has had several short stories published in fiction magazines across the US and the UK.
S.E.’s poetry book, Before Me, is published by Thought Catalog Books, New York.

Mash Stories website: http://mashstories.com/

Official S.E. Sever website: http://sesever.com/

 

 

 


What Scares You? A look…

Don't look! Don't look! Too late... Tamara Ustinov looks scary in Blood on Satan's ClawThe photo on the left is of Tamara Ustinov. It’s a still from the classic British horror film ‘Blood on Satan’s Claw’. The scene from which the still is taken represents what truly scares me.

To find out why a ‘look’ can be so damned scary, check out my post at the Horrifically Horrifying Horror Blog. Just don’t blame me if you have nightmares…

What scares you? Confessions are welcome in the Comments box below…