I started writing again just over 10 years ago. Not really sure what sparked it. I hadn’t written since I was in my early (troubled teens).
Suddenly, when I hit my fifties, stories began flooding my brain and screaming to be let out.
The first story to emerge was “Guy at the Bar”, which brought back lovely memories of a small village in North Yorkshire called Brompton on Swale. Tears flowed as I wrote about my parents, how I miss them. If there really is an after life, they’ll be looking down at me and shaking their head and saying, “Our Sandra, a rebel to the end.”
Guy at the Bar wasn’t a best seller, but it piqued my interest and more stories followed. I recently re-wrote Guy at the Bar, and bundled it into a collection of short, slightly scary stories, called “Ghosts on the Sand and other chilling tales.” It’s still for sale on Amazon, along with my second book “Dead of July.”
Ghosts on the Sand Dead of July – Amazon
Now I’m retired and have a little more time on my hands so I’m writing again. I’ve just finished a Children’s book, inspired by my daughter’s pup Tess. I took care of Tess for a short time while my daughter and her husband vacationed in Japan. I never knew dogs could be so funny, or have so much character. I adjusted my mindset to write for children. I also had to think like a puppy. It was a blast to write. “Princess Tess and her Mess” will be published sometime this year.
The pictures above are my mum and dad. I never stop missing them. On the right is the King William IV, where Guy at the Bar came to life.
Writing makes me happy!
What if the lingering evil of Viktor and his dead mother decided to visit me? He’d visited me from the other side before. Could he could do it again? Could he be stronger with dead mother beside him? What if she was a charred ghost, hell bent on revenge? I was startled out of my thoughts by a loud rapping sound.
Who could be coming to visit at this time of night?
Shadows in my car, I could see them.
You can’t hurt me, you’re dead. You can scare me, but you can’t hurt me.
“I need help,” I whispered.
Major McCafferty stopped and faced me.
“Why, whats wrong?”
“Viktor,” I whispered, “he’s back!”
“Sheila, you’d better tell me what’s going on, why are you so stressed?”
I opened my mouth to speak, but couldn’t find the words.
“Come on, deep breath, talk to me.”
“Viktor,” I whispered, “He’s back.”
“What? Sheila he’s dead.”
“Death didn’t stop him last year did it?” I sobbed.
“Last year you were contending with his evil family, they were playing tricks with your mind, not Viktor. Viktor is dead. His mother is also dead. Died in that horrendous fire, and hopefully burning in Hell. Yuri is in prison, they can’t hurt you. Look at me Sheila, listen to what I’m saying. The can’t hurt you anymore!”
I knew it was no use arguing. Neither Shirley or Jill had had seen Viktor, I was the only person cursed with seeing the dead. Now Shirley thought I was crazy. Maybe I was.
Evil Lingers for a while. Lingering Evil, my sequel to Dead of July is in the works, and coming along as nicely as Dead Russians will allow.
Viktor never knew love. He was used by Marianna, his mother in ways you can’t even imagine, ways I can’t bring myself to write about. She was a monster! In the late seventies, when Vlad, Viktor’s father was killed by a competing crime family, Marianna took revenge and then fled to Germany with her two sons, Viktor and Yuri. She became the Queen of a lucrative criminal world. A smart organized woman, she changed her business to suit the needs of the underworld. She traded guns, secrets and worst of all, women. No women is not the right word, she bought and sold young girls.
In her youth she was beautiful to look at, and took lovers as and when she pleased, male or female, it didn’t matter. If they pleased her she kept them for a while. If they didn’t satisfy her needs, they simply disappeared.
Marianna’s lifestyle caused her to age badly. Too much vodka, cocaine and sleepless nights turned her beautiful face into a grotesque mask. Willing lovers became few and far between, so she took her pick from the men who worked for her, and the young girls she traded. They were unwilling partners, and many were never seen again.
Yes Viktor was evil, but his mother was much worse, she was the Devil.
Shirley never finished her sentence.
The window just to the right of us exploded inwards. Splinters of glass flew towards us like tiny missiles. No time to move, we instinctively covered our heads with our hands and ducked. I felt tiny shards of glass hitting the back of my right hand, which was closest to the window. It only lasted a few seconds, but it seemed much longer. When I felt safe again I sat up Shirley’s head was on the table, she wasn’t moving.
The kitchen door burst open and Gay appeared. “Don’t move, I’ll call the medic’s.” Monica was right behind her, she looked at me “You okay?” she asked. “Yes, Shirley, are you alright?” Shirley lifted her head slowly, no blood on her face, her hands and hair had protected her head, but there was red mark on her forehead. She must have hit her head on the table.
She looked groggy. Her eyes wouldn’t focus!
Tucked into my bed, alone! No part of me exposed to the air, hiding, scared, no sleep for me tonight.
When will I be safe again?
The air moves, I feel it.
I’ve come for your unborn child.
I know my fears are talking to me. I’m alone with my fear, conjuring up terrors that don’t exist.
The bedcovers slowly glide down the bed and onto the floor.
Icy air touches my skin. Cold, dirty air, tainted with an evil presence.
“Won’t someone please, HELP ME!”
I shouted to an empty room. No one heard.
I clutched my stomach and prayed.
I’ve been reading Stephen King as long as I can remember. From his very first story to his very last, and enjoyed ever single one. His last book, The Outsider, may have been my favorite. I say that and then I remember the Mr. Mercedes trilogy, and Dr. Sleep. Oh and then there are his novellas. His writing changed to suit the era, but I was drawn into every single book. When I read Stephen King I don’t open a book, I reconnect with old friends.
Why am I telling you this? Because I’ve been quiet for a while! My brain has been active though, and now, its ready to go. I’m writing for 1984, the era, the style, the times. My Dead of July sequel is progressing. You can’t rush, or force a good story. It needs to flow naturally. I want my readers to put it down, take a deep breath and think about me. I’m not Stephen King, I’m Sandra Thompson, but I want folks to remember what I’ve written, from Dead of July to….wherever it ends.
Stephen King, you had me at Carrie!
Valentine’s day 1984
“Congratulations, you’re going to be a mum.”
I was stunned!
“What? Are you sure?”
“Yes no doubt about it! You look surprised, you were planning a family weren’t you?”
“Yes, but I just didn’t expect it to happen this quickly?”
The young Army Captain’s piercing blue eyes focused on me from across the desk. “You are one of the lucky ones, some people try for years to get pregnant. You are happy about it right! You wanted this baby didn’t you?”
His handsome face looked concerned, “Do you want me to talk to your husband?”
“What, no, this is great news,” I replied, “I’m just not sure I know how to be a mum.”
The young Captain laughed out loud.
This is the sequel to my first novel Dead of July. It starts with good news, a baby, but soon things go bad and once again Sheila is fighting for her life and trying to preserve the life of her baby!