The Paranormal Element - With an Excerpt

This is a re-post from April 2012, in anticipation of the release of ONCE AND FOR ALL, later this week!

The Sky Cove series revolves around reincarnation, which is a really fun paranormal element to play around with. In ONCE AGAIN, Layla and Lucas have to solve the mystery of the tragedy that happened to them in their past life and finally bring the evil-doing-madman to justice.  Phoebe and Todd also deal with a reincarnation drama, but with a twist.

Rather than a mystery, they have to break an ancient curse. I won't get into the details of the curse... you'll have to read the book to find that out!  But I will divulge this: Generations before them have had the opportunity to break the curse, and all of them have failed.

The curse manifests itself in Todd in an interesting manner:  Skinwalking... which is a bit like shapeshifting, but not quite. See, he can't change forms at his will.  He changes forms at PHOEBE'S will. And given that Phoebe doesn't realize she holds this power, or that it's tied to her artistic creations, it's a recipe for confusion and disaster!

The excerpt below is from Chapter 4. It's in first person, Phoebe's point of view, as she's carving a small animal for an art display. This is the second time she's experienced a strange trance-like state while carving, and it's just as disturbing as the first, but this time she's somewhat less startled.

     Rolling my chair from my desk to my worktable, I picked up a piece of scrap maple and went to work.
     It didn’t take long for the small lynx to begin to emerge from the wood.  Though the face of the animal looked similar to a cat, the longer body made it unique.  I spent the most time carving the face, particularly the eyes.  With each action, I could feel the lynx’s gaze on me, as if rather than just making it life-like, I was giving it life.
     The eyes focused, even seemed to move as if glancing around, the expression at first blank, then confused and bewildered.
     I cut my eyes left and right, looking for the source of the animal’s confusion, only to discover I was there again, the edge of a wooded area, seeing everything from what could only be the lynx’s point of view.
     It was crazy, and yet somehow I wasn’t startled by it this time.  As the lynx moved deeper into the trees, I felt its uneasiness, its fear.  The emotions weren’t mine.  I didn’t own them.  I felt them as if they were being transferred to me from someone else.
     A door opening and voices calling didn’t pull me out of the vision this time, because they were a part of the vision.  I heard them through the lynx’s ears, and felt alarm spread through the creature as we hurried further into the woods and concealed ourselves behind a large tree trunk.
     The darkness seemed to close in around us.  Footsteps made their way nearer, and with every moment we cowered behind the tree my heart hammered violently in my chest.
     I tried to reason with myself.  So what if someone saw us?  What would be so out of the ordinary about seeing a wild animal in the forest?
     But there was nothing ordinary about it on my end.  The sense of being in the scene but not being there wreaked havoc on the parameters of what was real in my world.
     I could not believe this was happening again.  This was more than craziness.  What if I dropped into one of these fugue states at school?  Or in front of my dad?   
     The fear of what might happen coursed through me with such force that I trembled.
     The small wooden figure slipped from my hand as I trembled in anticipation or fear or uncertainty or whatever it was.  Thankfully, the sound of the carved lynx hitting the hardwood floor of my studio snapped me back to reality.  

Hope you enjoyed! Happy reading and writing!


  1. Oh yummy! This sounds fascinating! gREAT POST!

  2. Oh, that's interesting. You're making the wait for this harder, Amy! No fair! LOL