Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Celebrate Women in Horror Month with a "Nightmare in the North"

Hi everyone,

Today I’m sharing a look at the making of my horror novella, Nightmare in the North. Some of you may know me as a romance author, but I also write short horror fiction.

Nightmare in the North is a cautionary tale about traveling alone in the winter and trusting strangers. Here’s the summary:


Stranded during a violent blizzard, Mark hikes to the only house nearby. George, a well-mannered University professor, welcomes Mark and gives him shelter from the storm.

By morning, Mark suspects that everything isn’t what it seems. George’s adult daughter, Kate, who also lives in the house, shares a disturbing and unsettling tale. When questioned, George insists that Kate has a psychological issue and can’t be trusted to tell the truth.

Mark quickly finds himself caught in a game of cat and mouse. Who should he believe? Is Kate’s desperate plea for help sincere? Should he be suspicious of George? Or are both of them plotting something together?

Isolated from everyone, Mark is forced to wait out the storm—and find a way to escape—if he hopes to make it out alive.

So… how did this novella come about? Believe it or not, I wrote a version of this story for my eighth grade English class. The assignment was to write a short story – and boy, did I! The original version was much shorter and less detailed, but the basic premise was there. I’m not sure what my English teacher thought when she read it, but I got an A.

I grew up in upstate New York where winters can be brutal and last a long time. It can be an isolated place, and sometimes you could be snowed in for days. I decided to use that as the backdrop to the story, throw in some strange characters, and add a little mystery. After I submitted the story for my English class, I pretty much forgot about it.

Then, in January of 2018 I drove to Vermont in a snowstorm. I was in the car for 12 hours, and naturally, my mind started to wander… I wanted to write a new horror story, but I wasn’t sure what I wanted to write. As I was driving, I thought back to that original story and decided to rewrite it – to tell the story the way it needed to be told.

I changed the opening, moved the setting to Vermont, and filled in all the details and backstory that set the tone. The ending of the new version is slightly different from the original, but it’s not off by all that much. I added an epilogue (of sorts) to the end, and spent about twenty minutes getting the last line just right.

Nightmare in the North is a departure from my “usual” romance novels, but it’s not gory. My horror stories tend to be more psychological/spooky than bloody. I love writing horror, and after writing a few romances, I find it refreshing to embrace my darker side and write something creepy. (In fact, for most of 2020 I’ll be returning to writing short horror fiction. I have a few stories in the works.)

After reading the story, my husband said that it was well written and it drew you in, but it was “twisted” and “disturbing” – I consider that high praise!

Order Nightmare in the North here:

I hope you’ll check it out. If you like horror fiction, don’t miss my other ebooks: Kropsy’s Curse and Dead Til Dawn. Read more about them on my site/blog: www.KelliWilkins.com

I enjoy hearing from readers and welcome comments and questions about my books. Follow me on my blog or on social media to get the latest news and updates.
Happy Reading,

About the Author
Kelli’s short horror fiction has appeared in several anthologies, including Mistresses of the Macabre, Moon Shadows, Wrapped in White, The Best of the First Line, Dark Things II: Cat Crimes, Frightmares, The Four Horsemen, and What If... She authored three horror ebooks: Kropsy’s Curse, Dead Til Dawn, and Nightmare in the North, plus Extraterrestrial Encounters: A Collection of Sci-fi Stories. Visit her Amazon Author Page www.amazon.com/author/kelliwilkins for a full title list. 

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

February is “Women in Horror” Month!

Hi everyone,

Did you know that February is “Women in Horror” month? To celebrate, I’m blogging about my two ghost stories, Dead ‘Til Dawn and Kropsy’s Curse.

First, let’s spend a night in the land of the dead with…

Dead ‘Til Dawn

Disturbing the dead doesn’t prove you’re brave – it proves you’re stupid.

After touring Gettysburg battlefield, Jessica, Tim, and Steve decide to sneak out to the Devil’s Den for some late-night fun. Jessica’s friend Kathy objects, and warns them about trespassing where they’re not wanted.

Undaunted by ghost stories and fueled by his own arrogance, Tim races toward the Devil’s Den. When the group drives through mysterious battlefield fog, they find themselves surrounded by Civil War soldiers looking for a little fun of their own.

Kathy leaves the others to fend for themselves and flees to Little Round Top. Although she’s rescued by a kindhearted Union solider named Charlie, she refuses to believe that what she’s experiencing is real. As the nighttime battle rages on, Charlie introduces Kathy to other weary soldiers, and she quickly realizes she’s trapped in the land of the dead until dawn.

Order Dead ‘Til Dawn here:

All other platforms: https://books2read.com/u/4X9aLb

So how did this story come about? Well, if you know me, you know I love writing psychological/creepy/spooky horror stories. And I also love traveling to historic places—especially if they’re haunted.

This novella was inspired by actual events that happened to me in Gettysburg, PA. I had a very unusual experience with battlefield fog and I wanted to use it in a story.

Read the true story that inspired my horror novella, Dead Til Dawn in this blog:

Although I don’t consider myself a “paranormal investigator” I love exploring haunted places and taking ghost tours. Historic houses and basically “anything old and creepy” appeal to my imagination. Is it any surprise that I love Halloween?

And because Halloween is my favorite holiday, I wrote this Halloween-themed horror story…

Kropsy’s Curse

Late one Halloween night, two young boys venture into a secluded graveyard in the hopes of conjuring up a spirit. Although Kyle is skeptical and would rather be home eating candy and watching horror movies, he reluctantly goes along with Jerry’s plan. He doesn’t believe Ouija boards work—until this one starts spelling out a message…

This Halloween-themed 1500-word short story is a cautionary tale about playing with a Ouija board in a graveyard.

This piece of flash fiction came to me when I was mulling over horror ideas. I actually came up with the ending first, then built the rest of the story around it. I can’t give away any more than that without spoiling the story, so you’ll have to read it for yourself.

Kropsy’s Curse is only $.99! Get spooked here:

All other platforms: https://books2read.com/u/47kMYj

In addition to these two horror ebooks (and my “disturbing” horror novella Nightmare in the North), my short fiction has appeared in several horror anthologies. Want to read them? Visit my Amazon page for a full title list, links, and more: www.amazon.com/author/kelliwilkins

Until next time,

Happy Haunting!

Kelli A. Wilkins

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Monday, February 10, 2020

Celebrate Valentine's Day All Year with "Romance Every Weekend..."

Hi everyone,

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, and if you’re looking for some fun romantic suggestions, why not try…

Romance Every Weekend: 104 Fun Ways to Express Your Love

Whether you’re just starting out dating, in a committed relationship, newlyweds, or you’ve been married for twenty years, Romance Every Weekend will show you how you can strengthen the bond between you and your loved one and deepen your relationship.

Romance shouldn’t be reserved for Valentine’s Day, birthdays, or an anniversary. Why should people wait for a special occasion to show someone they love that they care? Love can (and should) be expressed every chance you get.

Romance Every Weekend features 104 fun and easy ways you can express your love to that special someone in your life. Perfect for men or women, it focuses on tender, everyday gestures that let your partner know how much you love him or her.

Some suggestions include:

* Today, tell your sweetheart: “I knew I loved you when…” Sharing your feelings and expressing your love verbally has a deeper meaning than giving a gift or sending a card.

* Break out of your comfort zone. It’s time to try something new with your mate. Sign up for a class being offered today, in person, in your local area. It can be anything: cooking, Pilates, yoga, swimming, dancing, painting… Take the first class you find and run with it. (Whatever happens, remember, you’re in it together.)

* Watch the sun set together. No talking. But you can certainly hold hands. 

If you're looking for ways to keep your romance fresh, this is the book for you!

Romance Every Weekend makes a great gift for you – or for your sweetie! Why not order it now and try all 104 suggestions in 2020?

Get your copy here:

All other Platforms: https://books2read.com/u/3npVVP

Visit my site/blog: www.kelliwilkins.com to see all of my books!

Happy Valentine's Day everyone! This year, take a few minutes to tell the people close to you how much you love and appreciate them. A little acknowledgement and gratitude goes a long way. Take the time to cherish them while they're still here. 

With Love,


Saturday, February 1, 2020

New Romance Release - "Love, Lies and Redemption"

Hi everyone,

I’m pleased to announce the release of my western romance, Love, Lies and Redemption. Set in 1877 Nebraska, this novel blends a sensual love story with mystery and danger.

Love, Lies and Redemption

Shot and left for dead, Sam Hixton stumbles into a general store on the Nebraska prairie and collapses into the arms of Cassie Wilcox.

Cassie’s world is turned upside down when the handsome stranger drops into her life. Sam is another complication she doesn’t need: her business is dying and her trouble with the townspeople is escalating. Yet she’s determined to keep the store open — no matter what the cost.

As Sam recovers from his injuries, he hides the truth about his identity and convinces Cassie to let him work in the store. He’s attracted to her and admires her independent nature, but quickly realizes Cassie’s in way over her head. They fight their growing attraction, and Cassie questions whether she can trust her fragile heart to a mysterious stranger. Will he accept her once he knows about her troubled past?

Cassie resists Sam’s advances and represses her feelings until one fateful night when they give in to their fiery passion. Together, they work out a plan to save the store, but find their efforts are thwarted — and their lives endangered — by the locals.

Sam’s secret returns to haunt him and pulls him away just when Cassie needs him the most. Will he regain her trust when she learns the truth?

Cassie has everything invested in the store — can she save it and find true love with Sam before it’s too late?

Order Love, Lies and Redemption here:

All other platforms: https://books2read.com/u/mdzL6W

Want more romance? Follow my FB pages:

In February I’ll be sharing blogs about the making of the book and an excerpt! Stay tuned for more! 

Did you know I have another blog? Visit it here: www.KelliWilkins.com/blog

Happy Reading!