How To Train Your Vampire In 10 Easy Steps

Don’t think you need to train your vampire? Well, you do. So many of my twitter followers are infatuated with vampires.  Each one writes the definitive tale of the undead, featuring lust, blood, snarling, fangs, dark heritage, love, and black mist. I’ve read far too many of them, enjoyed them all, and admittedly, have become obsessed with the undead.

Instead of completing my own work, it seems that I spend far too much time reading the paranormal writings of my tweeps. I forgot, you really don’t think your subject is about the undead.  Your writing is so realistic, that I believe that you believe your vampires are alive.

Vamp In Need to Training

So, just for you, here is the short list of dos and don’ts for your dead-yet-not-dead creations.  I’ve kept the list short and simple, helping you to ease them into a state of acceptance from the general populace.

1.  Feed your vampire before it leaves home.  No one, and I mean no one (not even you) wants to become vampire fodder.

2.  Vampires, unlike zombies, are a picky lot. As specific blood scents and flavors (sweet or savory) appeal to different vampires, beware the fidgety lamia.  This is a sure sign that it is about to bolt for lunch or dinner.

3. Teaching by example is the best way to train your vampire.  Be neat. If you are a slob, it will be sloppy with a capital S.  Do you really want a trail of carnage lying around?

4.  Most vampires are, in fact, well-to-do. The vampire is, by longevity, a master of the art of acquiring money.  You will do well to have it contain the natural propensity for opulence so as not to attract unwanted attention.  In other words, have it leave the Rolex at home.

5.  Pay no attention what-so-ever to The Vampire Diaries or The Originals.  Vampires do not like to drive, even if it is a red, 1963 Porsche 356B Karmann Coupe à la Stefan Salvatore.

6.  Name your vampire. Never, ever introduce it as “my friend”.  It is not your friend.  It is your fiend.

7.  Do not, under any circumstances, take your vampire shopping at Costco or any other warehouse club. All of those warm bodies in one place will send it into a feeding frenzy.

8.  Forgot to replenish the blood supply?  In a pinch, vampires will drink whiskey.  Although they prefer blood, a good single malt (e.g., Four Roses)  will satiate it.

9.  Because crosses and / or garlic do nothing to repel a vampire, train it not to devour the poor human thrusting either of those two objects into its face.

10. Be very, very afraid if your vampire opens a Facebook account. This is a sure sign that many, many people are about to disappear.  Twitter is the safer, wiser choice for your vampire’s social media presence. The vampire # will thank you.

If your incubus requires additional training, be sure to refer to the full guide, “How To Train Your Vampire in 25 Steps or Less,” coming soon from this writer.


This is another repost from my blog.  I think my BFF Lily liked this one, so it’s for her.

UNBREAKABLE – Cover Reveal

Dun-da-da-daa! Here it is guys! The cover reveal for Aimee L. Salter’s first novel, BREAKABLE, is finally here! Aimee’s visit to the website inspired the book’s premise; it’s a site where authors go to write letters to their teen selves. Interesting stuff!



When seventeen-year-old Stacy looks in the mirror she can see and talk to her future self. “Older Me” has been Stacy’s secret support through the ongoing battle with their neurotic mother, relentless bullying at school, and dealing with her hopeless love for her best friend, Mark.

Then Stacy discovers Older Me is a liar.

Still reeling from that betrayal, Stacy buries herself in her art. But even that is taken from her when her most persistent tormentor uses her own work to humiliate her – and threaten her last chance with Mark.

Stacy’s reached breaking point.


Author Photo - ALS - Small format

Aimee L. Salter is a Pacific North-Westerner who spent much of her young (and not-so-young) life in New Zealand. After picking up a Kiwi husband and son, she’s recently returned to Oregon.

She writes novels for teens and the occasional adult who, like herself, are still in touch with their inner-high schooler.

Aimee is the author behind Seeking the Write Life, a popular blog for writers at can also find her on Twitter andFacebook

Aimee’s debut novel, BREAKABLE, releases November 4th for Kindle, Nook and in paperback. Add Breakable to your to-read list on Goodreads at

Scrapbooking Anyone?

Below is an interview done by Briana Vedsted of scrapbooking maven Tracy Carrig. I’ve included some photos of her work at the very bottom of this post and links to her sites including Twitter, Facebook, Etsy and her blog. Although I don’t have time to scrapbook myself, I may just find myself ordering items from Ms. Carrig directly. Yes, she does special orders too! 🙂

BV: So, what is “scrapbooking”?

TC: Simply put, scrapbooking is putting beautiful, fun paper, photos, and memorabilia together to tell a story.Think of it as enhancing your photos. They say a picture is worth a thousand words. What if you don’t know what those words are. Scrapbooking allows you to remember all the stories, jokes, heartfelt moments, and everyday life, and share the memories with family and friends. Imagine looking at a photo from someone else’s life. The photo by itself may give you some hints. Now if the photo were scrapbooked, the story behind the photo would also become clear. Scrapbooking is a fun way to share and remember your story for years to come.

BV: And what in the world is Memory Works?

TC: I like to call Memory Works the Mary Kay of the scrapbooking world. Memory Works carries scrapbooking products from all the big names (Fancy Pants, Pink Paislee and BoBunny, to name a few), as well as their own line called Simple Stories. Memory Works also offers a monthly kit subscription for $29.95 (plus shipping, handling, and sales tax). Each themed kit is packed with coördinated papers and embellishments from different brand name companies.

In addition, Memory Works offers a Hostess Incentive. This is a free gift to the party hostess can earn if the party results in an order of $150.00 (before tax). I like to offer this as well if there is either a single order from a customer of $150, or if there is a group of customers, though not necessarily at a party, that order enough supplies to meet to required minimum. The incentive changes every month and can be anything scrapbooking related, from a collection of patterned papers to a stamp set to a few specific items from a brand name collection.

BV: Is scrapbooking hard to do?

TC: Scrapbooking should be fun, so no, it’s not hard to do. If you find you’re having difficulty, take a step back. See where you’re getting stuck. Are you trying to re-create a technique or layout and it’s not coming together? Do you not understand the terminology? Take me for example. I know this much about knitting and crocheting. Now I know the terms knit and perl. Did I spell them right? No idea. Can I tell you what they mean? Nope, sorry. I learned a lot of the terms from magazines and websites. And for me, it clicked. I kept wanting more and more. So it shouldn’t be hard. Again, if you’re running into trouble, try to pinpoint what exactly is giving you pause. Sometimes you need clarification, or to just tell yourself there are no mistakes. I really enjoy it and I’m always learning something new, so there’s no limit to what you can create. I’ve found if you love it, you stick with it and your style evolves from there.

BV: Do you have some examples of what scrapbooking is?

TC: Absolutely. These are some recent layouts (a layout is 1-2 scrapbook pages). I have lots more on my blog with close up detail photos and info on supplies and techniques I used.

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BV: Can someone teach me how to scrapbook?

TC: Absolutely, there are lots of options. Now, I must confess, I learned by doing. I never took a class, nor did I know anyone else who scrapbooked. Heck, I had just learned about it myself. So I went to my nearest bookstore and bought some scrapbooking magazines. Then after reading them and devouring them (figuratively speaking, of course), I went to my local craft store and bought some supplies (careful, this hobby is addicting! in a good way :D). And I started scrapping!.

However, if my journey sounds scary, you can take a class. These can be offered anywhere from a religious/spiritual center, your local craft store (big box and small business), library, school, historical society. If you know someone who is a scrapbooker (the majority of which are women, but there are some VERY talented men out there), you can ask them to teach a class, or just teach you! There are also numerous blogs online whose author post videos for certain techniques, etc. And, being in the age of YouTube, there are blogs, magazines, and individual people who have a channel which you can view and/or subscribe to. One benefit to individual scrapbookers is that they teach techniques that you may not otherwise comes across. And they give you lots of inspiration and ideas.

BV: Where can I get scrapbooking supplies?

TC: In a sense, anywhere. However, just because you CAN get it anywhere doesn’t mean you SHOULD. Office supplies, arts and crafts stores, big chain stores, and local scrapbooking/stamping stores; all of them carry supplies. I’ve actually found that the big box crafts stores by me do carry some of what I need, but not most of what I’m looking for. You can also go the online route, which opens up the possibilities tremendously.

Big box general retailers are limited in what they carry because they’re general retailers. So, see what they carry, check the prices, and think if you’ll actually use it. Don’t get lured by the clearance sticker of half off and pay $5 for a border punch that you’ll never use. This is why if you can, purchase your supplies from a crafts store, a scrapbooking store if possible. If you live out in the middle of nowhere, so to speak, your best options are probably online shopping or a consultant for a scrapbooking supplies company (yes, shameless self-promotion, I had to do a little :P)

BV: I live in the United States, do you know anyone who I could send my pictures to for them to design a scrapbook for me, because I’m just to busy to do it myself right now.

TC: Why, yes I do *wink, wink.* I am happy to design a scrapbook, mini album, etc. for you. My prices are simple and really reasonable. I do not want any screaming wallets, thank you 😛 You can look at my blog,, to check out my prices, and e-mail me at tracy . carrig @ gmail . com to get the whole party started (just delete the spaces before hitting send)!

BV: What is your favorite thing to make?

TC: So far, layouts, either one of two pages. I just finished a two-page layout for my little person’s first birthday. I’ve start making cards, which I sell on my Etsy shop, called ScrapMusings. And I’m starting to get into altered art, mixed media, and mini albums. I’m loving getting messy, and I love layers.

BV: I want to find out more about this art called scrapbooking! Show me more! Are you online? Twitter? Facebook? Pinterest? Got a blog?

TC: Yes, yes, yes, yes, and yes. Here’s my stuff:

Twitter: (ScrapMuse)

Facebook: (or search for Tracy Carrig (you should see a pic of me and my munchkin))

Pinterest: (or look up Tracy Carrig / ScrapbookMuse, or you can just find me from Briana’s page ;P)

Etsy: (shop name: ScrapMusings)


I hope to see and talk to you all soon! Happy scrapping!


Almost Two Weeks. . .

I can’t believe it’s been almost two weeks since I’ve written a post. It feels like it’s been an eternity. I’ve missed coming to the site badly. It’s not even so much that I needed to write a post; I needed to interact with my friends, my fellow bloggers and tweeps. Unfortunately, I haven’t had the opportunity to do that the past two weeks. I’ve been able to make comments here and there, but that is about it. I haven’t been able to enjoy the back and forth banter of oh, I don’t know, say. . . Ionia and Charles. I’ve missed blog hopping and just commenting on different posts that I find interesting.

Life’s been pretty rough on the home front  lately. Luckily it hasn’t been stroke or pain (not much anyway 🙂 ) related. For that I’m grateful, but I don’t like that so many curve balls have been thrown my way lately. It’s been overwhelming to the point where I had to go to NJ for several days and stay with some friends just to clear my head. As much as I love my blog family, because of the personal nature of the home front issues, I can’t go into detail.

Since I’ve been in NJ, I haven’t done much in the way of my novel-writing. I have, however, been playing around with my poetry 🙂  . I’ll go through some of them over the next day or two and maybe I’ll post one or two of the better ones on my next post.

Anyway, I just wanted everyone to know that I’m OK, and that I missed all my friends and blogger family, especially my ‘daughter’ Briana, who worried enough to look for me on Twitter. Love you girl!

Hopefully I can have these issues resolved soon. Having been through so much, all I want to do now is get better, stronger, move up, out and ON!!!!