Author Archive

A New Classic Novel

Posted: Sunday, 1 January, 2012 by nicolajones in Book Reviews, Editorials
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In a time of utter popularity for the vampire in fiction and popular media comes a book dedicated to the lesser known relatives of the undead, the incubus.  The Demon Lover written by Juliet Dark is the story set in modern times, dealing with supernatural beings unlike those in other fantasy novels.  Juliet Dark is a pseudonym of bestselling author Carol Goodman, who is best known for being the author of Arcadia Falls.  The novel starts out with a passage said to be the unpublished manuscript of The Dark Stranger by Dahlia LaMotte, who is an important character in the story, although long since dead.  The story begins to unfold as Dr. Cailleach McFay interviews for a position as an assistant professor of English and Folklore at the small Fairwick College in upstate New York.  Callie as she is more commonly called is hesitant to take the position at the small school, as she wants to hold out to see if she got a job at NYU, and get an apartment with her longtime boyfriend Paul who is working on his Ph.D. in California.  The personal history of Callie, and the town and College history of Fairwick slowly unfold as we learn of Callie’s dreams of a fairy prince as a child after her parents’ deaths and the recent dreams of a phantom lover.  But is this lover who visits Callie every night just a dream?  Or is he the mysterious Demon Lover that Callie has based her career on studying.

The demon lover is the theme that takes up the first half of the novel, before we learn that the town hides its own secrets.  Which I do not wish to give away, as the book is a definite worthwhile read.  Let us instead consider the Incubus.  The Author tells the story of the Demon Lover, known in many cultures the world over.  He is the incubus, Lilu, El Trauco, the Alp, Popo Baua, the lidere and more important for the story, the Ganconer or Love Talker.

We hear the story of the Ganconer when Callie first sees a beautiful painted triptych called the Fairies Farewell.  The story is told to our heroine by the mysterious Soheila who notices Callie looking longingly at the face of a dark fae man in the painting, riding besides the Fairy Queen.  She tells Callie that the Fairy Queen abducted the Ganconer as a young man, and took him off the land of fairy, where he lost his human nature.  The tale claims that he seduces mortal women in an attempt to drink their essence and gain back his own humanity, but that he sucks his lovers dry before he can gain flesh.  However, later we here a version that says that he must make a woman love him to bring him back to his mortal self, but that he fails to make the women love him, and drains them dry after many nights of passion and days of obsessed creativity.

As the Graveyard Press caters to the gothic and occult community as well as the OVC, let us work with the assumption that the readers of this piece at least know someone who feeds on sexual energies.   The incubus and succubus are often lumped in with classical vampire myths; there are striking differences that are also ignored by modern living vampires.  To feed off of sexual energy, to create this frenzied need and then breathe in the life-force as the demonic incubi and succubae do is very different than the stories of reanimated corpses feasting on human blood.  The undead in myth are thoughtless bodies craving nothing but blood.  It wasn’t until modern times that the vampire became something of a sex object and a being with a will of its own.  Whereas the incubi and succubae are insubstantial unless in the act of love making.  And often times they are seeking to have a child by their mortal lover.  So why is it that the sexual vampires and psychic vampires do not identify with the incubi and succubae?  The beings of myth are handsome men and tantalizing women who are irresistible.  They come at night, and take only energy from their victims.  They do not bite or leave any marks behind.

Perhaps it is the popularity of Vampire fiction that leads to the label in the OVC.  Maybe Juliet Dark’s book will bring the Incubus in to modern consciousness the way that Bram Stoker’s Dracula first captured the minds of Victorian women with the dark seductive vampire lover.

A Modern Fairy Tale

Posted: Sunday, 1 January, 2012 by nicolajones in Book Reviews
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A Modern Fairy Tale

In a world of magics and dangerous brambles that slow the body to an eternal sleep comes a tale of a man seeking to save the world.  It is a true modern fairy tale, like something out of Arabian Nights.   The Alchemist by Paolo Bacigalupi is a short novella that was written in a far off Renaissance world created in tandem with Tobias Buckell who created his own novella.  It is the story of a lone alchemist who seeks to save his city, and perhaps the world from the bane of the Bramble.  Whenever a person uses magic, somewhere a bramble shoots up.  The bramble has milky hairs that when it comes in contact with human skin causes a deep sleep that slows the heart until it stops beating.  The Alchemist is a widower, forced to sell all his belongings in order to feed his daughter and Pila, the servant who has stayed loyal and cares for the young Jiala. As the story unfolds we see the greed and corruption of the Mayor and Majister, out to execute anyone breaking the ban on magic in order to gain their lands.   The Alchemist with his miraculous balanthast that can destroy the brambles gets caught up in the twisted plot of the Mayor and Majister.

Nicola A. Jones

An Interview with Julia Caples, Lady DarkRose

Posted: Saturday, 31 December, 2011 by nicolajones in Uncategorized
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The vampire community has many notable names and faces, and a history that is complex and the different segments of community often do not know of the individuals who contributed to other areas of the community’s evolution.  If you came to the online vampire community after 2005, you might never have heard of Julia Caples.  And for those who were active online and off prior to then you might have wondered what happened to this notable figure who seemed to vanish from the communities conscious.  I have known Julia, better known as Lady Dark Rose, since 2000.  We met online in a yahoo discussion group, and when she opened House Sable Brahmin I was invited to join.  Julia became my mentor and best friend, and has shaped my personal evolution since then.  We met for the first time in the fall of 2001, when I journeyed to her home in Pennsylvania.   She has been a constant presence in my life ever since.  Recently Julia returned to the internet and working on the Tradition that she founded.  The editors at the Graveyard Press asked me if I could interview Julia, a unique position for any writer, and a challenge to step outside my role as best friend and present questions to her that the community would find interesting, while doing so in an unbiased way considering my involvement in many of the projects that Julia is working on.  I hope I have been successful and that you enjoy the following interview.

Nicola: You have said that you first realized you were a vampire in the seventies as a child, can you describe what that felt like and how you became aware?

Julia: I actually became “aware” that I wasn’t like anybody else that ever knew or even knew of when I was a child in the 70’s. I was raised in a devout Southern Baptist household. I didn’t have access to things like vampire movies, books/stories, pictures etc. I did however have a very basic understanding/knowledge of what the literary/folklore vampire was, thanks to other children talking about those “forbidden” subjects in my youth group at church. I knew that even though I didn’t actually have many of the traits of the literary/folklore vampire, I knew enough about myself (I spent a lot of time alone. Other children instinctively knew that I was not like them. Which suited me just fine; I wasn’t very keen on the idea of spending time with them) to know that I hungered for blood. As well, I was already feeding off of people’s life force and knew enough to recognize that I was doing that (I may not have called it feeding off of life force, but I knew that I was somehow inhaling other people’s “souls”) and that when I did it (which was all the time), I felt unbelievably good. I realized early on that when I would ” inhale people’s souls”, that I would achieve a sense of clarity about all things. I realized that I could understand things about life that even my parents (which in retrospect, is not saying much) were not able to comprehend. So, in conclusion, I didn’t really believe that I was the kind of vampire the kids from church described. Yet I knew that I was something very similar. So, I used the word vampire to describe myself to myself. For some reason I needed to be able to label what it was that I felt (the blood hunger), as well as what I instinctively did. Which was “inhale human souls”. Perhaps, I needed to label myself so as not to feel completely alone.

Nicola:  You have also said that you first publicly described yourself as a vampire in the early eighties, what was your coming out of the coffin like and where and  to whom did you come out to?

Julia:

My first time as well as any other subsequent times in the mid to late 80’s when I first publicly described myself as a vampire, was in a nut shell, no big deal. I didn’t announce it in any kind of media. I did choose to tell a few select people. Since I started drinking human blood in the 80’s, it was sometimes necessary to explain to those who I fed from what I believed my true inner nature to be. Even at the time in my life, I was adept at hunting. I was able to pick out the type of person who would be able to accept what I was telling them about myself as well as be sympathetic to my need/desire to feed from them. Sometimes it wasn’t necessary to explain any of that to my donors. Since I usually chose to drink human blood during a sexual encounter (that can be many different things). I learned very quickly and early on that a sexual element only adds more power, more oomph, more everything to the consuming of human blood. It was far more convenient and much easier to feed this way. More times than not, my donors complied with my request for their blood without any explanation on my part.  I know that for me, the ability to “enchant” those around me was/is an innate ability. I never had to “work” at it, still don’t. In fact, for me, everything about my vampiric nature came rather easily. I never had any physical or moral struggles with my true nature.

Nicola: What were your early influences?

Julia:  As I stated previously, I didn’t really have any influences. As a child, I was forbidden to watch vampire movies, read vampire books, or have any access to anything vampiric or occult in nature. As a pre-teen and as a teenager, I lived on the streets, or I was fighting for my survival (non vampiric), or I was giving birth to children and in general, living in one long nightmare. I didn’t have any inclination to seek out anything that had to do with vampires (movies, books, folklore) besides; everything I needed to know about being a “vampire” was already inside of me. On some level, I already knew that. I did however meet a witch (a Wiccan) when I was in the midst of what would be the start of one horrific nightmare after another. I was 12 years old when the Wiccan came into my life. She opened my mind to all kinds of possibilities. Not vampiric ones, but the door to the occult (and its many paths) and new possibilities had been unlocked for me. I had always been drawn to all things Occult (especially those things considered “dark” in nature) as a child.

Nicola: You were well known in the nineties as public figure for blood drinkers, what all media did you do and what were your intentions for doing so?

Julia: Yes, I was very well known in the nineties as a vampire (blood drinker).  Side Note: Notice that I am not using the term Sanguinarian, that is a label created by the OVC. I’m not sure why we needed a new word to describe ourselves? Perhaps, to many in the community (mostly the OVC), Sanguinarian sounds less predatory, less “dark”. Blood drinker seems more honest, more raw, more in keeping with our predatory natures. Make no mistake; if you are a vampire, you are a predator. You can live in denial all you want. Bottom line, vampire equates predator, on some level. Sorry, long side note. By the early nineties, I really had no idea what/who was really out there in regards to any kind of structural vampire group/society/community. I came to realize that I am probably not the only real living vampire in the world. So, I started my own vampire magazine (no internet yet), in order to find and bring together others like myself. In doing that, I opened a flood gate. Every kind of person, vampire or not, came out of the wood work. I was inundated with magazines, books, illustrations, original writings, and requests from vampire researchers and so on, to share with them my insights and life story. I was approached by an author to be interviewed for a chapter in his book. After the book was published and even before (due to people like Marty Riccardo, a very well-known and respected vampire researcher and writer, singing my praises), the media couldn’t seem to get enough of the “normal” looking mother who is a vampire and a witch. I did daytime talk shows in the USA and in Europe. I was in the book ‘Something in the Blood’. I was interviewed in many vampire magazines. I was interviewed in local “what’s happening” magazines. I did TV shows about the mysterious and unknown things in our world. I spoke at various vampire gatherings. My intentions for doing so much media here and in Europe, started with noble intentions. I sincerely wanted to find the others like myself and help them. Which I did indeed accomplish. Along the way, I became self-important with all the attention I was receiving. I made poor choices, in part, because of my status as a vampire celebrity. Towards the end of my celebrity status, I had come back to myself and was only interested in finding and helping others like myself.
Nicola:    Can you tell us what all shows you appeared on and in which year?  What were those experiences like?  What was the worst show you did in your opinion?  What  was your favorite show that  you did?

Julia: I will do my best to tell you all the shows that I appeared in, not in chronological order. I am fuzzy about a lot of the media that I did. I moved a lot and lost quite a bit of my records and/or tapes, copies of print media and so on that I had of the different media that I did.

The Ricki Lake Show-1994?

(Author’s Note: This show was my first introduction to Living Vampires, I remember watching it in 1994 when it aired).

A German Documentary (I can’t remember the name of the production company) 1994

Black Pearls Documentary-1993 or 1994

Belfast Radio (in Ireland) 1995?

Here’s Johnny (Late night talk show in London) 1997?

Exploring the Unknown-2000

Penn & Teller: Bullshit-2004

The Bill Cunningham Show-2011

Tons of local radio shows in Florida and  San Francisco, California.

These are the only one’s that I can think of off the top of my head.

For the most part, most of my experiences with doing these shows was positive, especially the documentaries. The worst show I did was The Ricki Lake Show…bar none. Ricki Lake and her “people” were rude and condescending. They were very unprofessional (in my opinion). My best experience was doing The Here’s Johnny Show in London. I got paid a lot of money for starters. I was treated like a sane person, not a delusional wanna be vampire/role player. I got to see fabulous London and hang out with that nights other guest on the show–Richard E. Grant, (from ‘Warlock’ and ‘Bram Stoker’s Dracula’ movies fame). He told me that he thought what I had to say was fascinating. As well as the awesome crew from the show. It was as all around awesome experience. I would also like to mention the media that I turned down. I turned these down mostly because I thought that they would do the community more harm than good.

Dateline-1994 or 1995 (they wanted to interview me about Roderick Justin Ferrell. If you don’t know who he is, you should. Go look it up. My thoughts at the time were that having the Vampire community associated with him would be a very bad thing.)

David Letterman-1996 (I decided that nothing good could possibly come from being interviewed by David Letterman. I don’t really have a concrete reason, it was mostly a feeling.)

The Howard Stern Show-1996 (The same reasoning that I stated for the David Letterman Show, I applied to doing the Howard Stern Show. I couldn’t possibly see what good could come of it. Even though I was asked to do these shows during a time in my life when I was self-absorbed, I was able to look outside of myself enough, to see the mistake it would have been to do these shows.)

Montel Williams-1996 (For this show, I probably would had done it. However, the timing was off. I had too much already going on, media wise.)

I mention these shows for two reasons. One, these are or were, media shows with audiences in the millions. I would have reached a lot of people. Two, I wonder now if I had done these shows, what differences would they had made for the community as well as in my life.

Nicola: You had a chapter about you in the book Something in the Blood, can you tell us about the experience of being interviewed for the book?

Julia: I was chapter 13 in the book ‘Something in the Blood’. My over all experience being interviewed for the book was really a good experience. The authors, Jeff Guinn with Andy Grieser, were very open-minded (at least that is how they seemed to me, during my interview) and very funny (I really like funny people). They seemed genuinely interested in understanding who/what I perceived myself to be. I remained in close contact with Jeff Guinn for many years after the book was published. By doing that book, I was able to reach out to quite a few people (vampires) and help them to have a better understanding about themselves and hopefully unlock some doors for them and make available knowledge that was previously unavailable to them.

Nicola: What all print media did you contribute to or be interviewed for? What about radio? Do you have any interesting experiences to share?

Julia: I will try to remember all the print media and radio that I did. Like I previously stated, most of the information is coming straight from my memory. I moved a lot and had most of my belongings stolen from me on several occasions. Amongst those belongings that were stolen, most of the media that I did for the community were taken. Okay, here it goes…off the top of my head:

Weekly World News (no longer in publication as of 2010…a moment of silence)

Java (October-Special Horrible Issue-Arizona)

Journal of the Dark (several times)

V.I.E. (several times)

Something in the Blood

Vampyre Magazine (Issue #1)

Not “print” media, but I did quite a few online interviews over the years (mostly in the beginning of the OVC).

Belfast Radio (this was an awesome interview).

Tons of local radio in Florida and  San Francisco,California
Nicola: You published your own underground Magazine the Dark Rose Journal; can you tell me about the experience and what it taught you?

Julia: Yes, I published (which means, especially in the beginning, that I edited, wrote all the articles and fiction, did all the illustrations and physically put the 80+ pages magazine together myself…no matter what Jeff Guinn’s assumptions when he interviewed me) a Vampyre Magazine–‘The DarkRose Journal’ in the early to late 90’s. It was, to my knowledge, one of the first international zines that were dedicated to “real” living vampyres. I am using the “Y” spelling of the word vampire now because that is how I spelled it in my magazine (back in the early 90’s). My reasons for doing that were two-fold. First, spelling it with a “Y” is a much older spelling of the word. I just liked the way it looked better than the modern version. Second, that was my way of differentiating “real” vampyres from role-players, life-stylers and club kids.  Anyways, I’m not implying that I was the only one or even the first magazine to explore “real” living vampyres from the perspective of a “real” living vampyre. However, I was certainly among the group that was the early trailblazers of the “real” vampyre Community. My time publishing ‘The DarkRose Journal’ was an explosion of growth, spiritually, socially and physically. Like I said earlier, after I published the first issue of the Journal, Vampyres came into my life from all over the world, from under every rock, out of every cave and yes, out of every coffin (sometimes literally). I was bombarded with “vampires” who needed my help, who wanted me to join them (that means all kinds of different things), who wanted to “set me straight” about what a vampire really was, those who wanted to join me, and so on. It also brought out the fanatic Christians as well as it brought out people who truly thought that they were real vampire hunters. The overall lesson I learned from publishing ‘The DarkRose Journal’ was that there is a real need to find others like myself and form some kind of bind and help each other in whatever way we can.

Nicola:  You ran an early incarnation of a house, called the Dark Court, what was your motivation for it and can you tell me about the inception and evolution of the group?

Julia: Yes, after the first issue of ‘The DarkRose Journal’ was published, quite a few local “vampires” came out of their hiding places to meet me. They always wanted to meet at the local Gothic club. Upon meeting certain individuals, it became clear to me that they were looking for someone to open certain “vampiric” doors for them. So, even though I personally didn’t think that any of them were “real” living vampyres, I created a Vampyre Coven-The Dark Court. They seemed to be craving this kind of closeness with me. Since, we became a very close knit group of vamps, it made my then current situation (I had 2 small children to take of) a whole lot easier. We, The Dark Court, met at night (I know, big shocker) after my children were asleep or during the day (another shocker…I had little kids, I had to get up during the daylight hours) when my children were at school. These meetings were, being completely honest, more for my benefit than for theirs. I had my own non vampyre human buffet to feed from, whenever I wanted. I tried to impart my vampiric knowledge to them, as well as help them unlock previously locked doors that opened up into the many realms of the Occult. I don’t think that they absorbed much of what I gave them. I think that they mostly liked making the rounds in the vampire/goth culture, while being seen with the local vampire celebrity. We, The Dark Court, did do a lot of public Vampyre ceremonies in a few different venues. It was quite mesmerizing from the audience’s perspective, at least that’s what we were always told. We raised money performing these ceremonies and used the revenue to help local charities. So, I amend my previous statement. The Dark Court didn’t mostly exist for my benefit. We did indeed help others which in turn helped us to grow and evolve as individuals. So, I guess it was a win, win scenario. They got what they wanted (status of some kind, at least in their minds) and I received what I wanted/needed.

Nicola: What made you create House Sable Brahmin and what was your inspiration for the Cimmerian Illuminati?

Julia: Initially, I was asked to create a House for the Sanguinarium by another well-known member of the community (not well known then, but well known now). The Sanguinarium was just taking off when I created House Sable Brahmin. I had just gotten married right around the same time the house was being created. My husband, at the time, helped me create House Sable Brahmin. It was actually more important to him than it was to me. I was just doing it because those I was close to at the time asked me to join them by creating a House. I kept my House very simple (it was real life and online). It initially consisted of Elders (Yes, I was an “official”-had a public ceremony in NY and everything-Adept Elder in the Community. I was even given a special Ankh to wear…WooHoo!) and Mavens (initiates). Once I saw the error in that
(you cannot, in my opinion, give someone the title of Elder. A true Elder probably doesn’t even know that they are a true Elder. They certainly don’t “wear” the title of Elder plastered across their forehead. Perhaps assigning labels and positions to the members of a House works for others, but it did not work for me or my members). After I did away with all the labels and encouraged “real” free speech among the members, my House did okay for a time. However, I felt that it never had any real growth or evolution. I felt that it’s only purpose seemed to become just another House taking up internet space. In my opinion, it served no real purpose other than to boost individual ego’s and/or the House’s ego in the community. I didn’t/don’t need a House to find those who resonate with the Darkborne Tradition–the spiritual path of Cimmerian Illuminati…this is my path, a path that was borne from my innate vampiric Essence.

Let’s break it down:

Cimmerian Illuminati: A balance of Darkness and Illumination. If you will…an illuminating Darkness. Cimmerian Illuminati is a blending of Elemental Magick, Blood (feeding and Magickal/ritual uses), sexual magick, and innate vampiric abilities. As disciples of “Endarkment” (Just to be clear, I coined this term in 2000 in the OVC), we use Cimmerian Illuminati to continuously evolve our divine spiritual and physical legacy.

Let me define Cimmerian for you: Cimmerian a) Pertaining to Cimmerium, a town at the mouth of the Palus Maeotis. The ancients pretended that this country was involved in Darkness; whence the phrase Cimmerian Darkness, to denote a dark or continued obscurity. b) One of the mythical or ancient Cimmerti, first prominently mentioned by Homer. Written also as Kimmerian.

Upon entering the Sanguinarium with my House–I needed to explain my spiritual path, if I had one (as per the rules). I had named my beliefs/path quite a while ago…The Darkborne Tradition. Cimmerian Illuminati, was a more detailed explanation of that original belief system.

Our Darkness is not the absence of Light. It is one of Illuminating Darkness. It is Endarkment

Nicola: After you had your son you took a break from the community, and focused on family and your own personal path, can you share any lessons you learned during that time?  Do you find motherhood more fulfilling now, having been able to focus solely on your children for a while?

Julia: After my experience with doing the Penn & Teller: Bullshit Show (really, the name of the show should have made me turn it down) two weeks after I gave birth to my 3rd child, I decided to take some time off from the online Vampire community and doing publicity for the community. I tried to be a better mother to my newest addition, than I was to my 2 older children—who were at the time of the birth of my 3rd son, almost grown. My life has/does consist of so much more than the vampire community. Because of the things that happened to me, starting in my childhood, when I became a vampyre celebrity (a Z list celebrity to be sure), for the first time, people were seeking me out to learn from me, to be with/around me. Instead of seeking me out to abuse me, torture me, rape me, beat me, or any number of horrible things. So, in the midst of my “celebrity”, I became self-absorbed–and while I never abused my children or denied them my love, there were definitely times when I was neglectful. I definitely missed some of the precious moments of their childhoods. I vowed to myself and my newborn son that I would be a better mother this time around. So, I felt it necessary to remove myself from the OVC. Not the real life community. I was still who/what I am, and lived my life as such. I just stopped doing media, of any kind for the community. I stayed away from the OVC for about 6 years. When I returned, it had changed quite a lot. My sabbatical from the OVC taught me very little. For I never really gleaned much of anything useful from the OVC. For me, knowledge is gained in in real life experiences. I personally, never learned anything of significance from the OVC sites/forums. For me, most of the information that is available in the OVC, is old hat, or it is, in my opinion, complete and utter bullshit. Not all, just most of it. I’m not negating the usefulness of the OVC, just explaining that real vampyres existed long before the OVC. My time away, like I already stated, allowed me to be the mother that I should have been with my oldest children. Basically, my whole time away from the OVC, was spent raising my son. I didn’t change who/what I am, other than I learned I was not the center of the Universe, Vampire or otherwise. I ate a huge piece of reality and humble pie…and it was delicious.

Nicola:     Do you have any advice for new mothers who are in the community about raising a child as a vampire?

Julia: The best advice I can give a new mother in the V Community raising a child as a vampire is…DON’T raise your child as a vampire. That is, in my opinion, a form of spiritual/emotional abuse. Just because you are a “vampire” doesn’t mean that your children are “vampires”. You absolutely cannot influence them in any way. They have to discover their own inner nature (whatever that is) on their own.

Now, if I read this question incorrectly, and you are actually asking me, how does a young mother raise a child when the mother is a vampire…is a different answer, of course. Being a parent has nothing to do with being a vampire. I would hope that a young vampire mother would be more tolerant and open-minded than the young non-vampire mother. However everyone is an individual with individual personalities and belief systems. I raised my children to learn HOW to think, not WHAT to think. As a result (even though my children suffered horribly due to the ignorance of others), my 2 oldest children have become beautiful and awesome adults. They are productive members of society, while at the same time being empathic, compassionate, and passionate, beyond kind hearted human beings. I never included them in any part of my vampirism. They knew of it (how could they not). They asked a few questions, but in general could have cared less. They still, to this day, could care less. Just love your children for who they are, not what/who you want/think they should be. Never abuse them physically, spiritually or emotionally on any level. I know that seems like a given, but you might be surprised how many people abuse their children and don’t even realize that they are doing it. My 2 oldest children are the product of rape (by the same man, who I was forced to marry at the age of 17). I mention this only to convey a point. Even though they were borne of vile ignorance and violence, I never saw them as anything but the most beautiful creations and the truest meanings in my world. I never took out the horror that I suffered, due to their “father” raping me, on them. I simply love them and appreciate them for who/what they are.

Nicola:     What do you see as the Future for the Darkborne Tradition?

Julia: As far as the future of The Darkborne Tradition goes, I would like for it to be a “beacon” in the glorious Darkness for those who resonate with its path (in whatever way). I want it to evolve and grow, just as the life we live should evolve and grow. I do not want it to stagnate, like I see much of the Vampire Community has. Perhaps some people will come and they will leave as they evolve and no longer feel that they need or fit with The Darkborne Path. That is as it should be. I hope that an influx of people dedicated to understanding their true inner natures, will keep the Tradition alive and growing. Where it might eventually end up, I cannot say. The point of The Darkborne Traditions existence is to be but a stepping stone, on the many different paths of its members. Hopefully, as its members evolve and move on, they will take some of The Darkborne Tradition with them. In doing so, we will forever be a part of the cycle of Universal Energy, passed on from Vampyre to Vampyre.

Side Note (I know, yet another one): When I left the OVC those 6 or so years, my best friend Nicola Jones, kept the fire of The Darkborne Tradition burning within the community. Honestly, I dropped the ball and left quite a few people without guidance, just swaying in the wind. Nicola never gave up spreading the word that there was/is an alternative to all the other “stuff” that the community (not everyone in the community) tries to dictate as the only truth about real living vampires. Thank you Nicola from the bottom of my vampire Essence.

Nicola: Awe shucks, your welcome!

Nicola: What projects are you currently working on?

Julia: I am currently writing my memoir. Which does relate to the Vampire Community…a huge chunk of the book will be about my experiences in the V Community. Let me explain. I was bombarded in the 90’s by various publishers and other writers, to write my life story. I couldn’t do it then. Good thing too, I would have written it for all the wrong reasons. Now that my life has become somewhat settled (at least compared to what it has been), I feel that now is the time to share my story. The truth is, my life story is to most people incomprehensible. It is the stuff of fiction. It is unfathomable to most, vampire or not. I have faced a great many horrors. Not that I think most people will be able to relate to the things that happened in my life. But I think that my message of no matter how horror filled someone perceives their life to be, I mean no matter what, you keep going. You never give up; you never surrender (Thanks ‘Galaxy Quest’). You don’t allow yourself to become a victim of anyone or anything. The worthless meat suits who tried to break you, are so far beneath you that they are not even worthy of your hate. That no matter what the reader is going through, if I can make it through Hell and come out smelling like a Dark Rose. Then surely they can conquer anything that comes along in their life. I am not judging one person’s misfortune as being better or worse than mine. There is no scale.  I plan on using the proceeds from my book to start/help an organization for abused women and children. As well, I would like to give some of the money to the Vampire Community. I just haven’t decided in what capacity yet. I am also working on co-writing with Nicola Jones, The Darkborne Grimoire. I don’t want to say too much about it. Plagarism runs rampant in this community.

Nicola:  What is your hope for the future of the vampire community?

Julia: My hope for the future of the Vampire Community is simply that those involved with the community, whether “real” vampires or not, continue to evolve and grow spiritually, physically and socially. Until individuals within the community actually evolve and grow in those areas, the community will stagnate or worse, become completely driven by drama and false prophets. A community is only as evolved as i’s members. I’m not sure where the community is headed. Real vampyres are not part of the herd. We follow ourselves, our inner vampiric Essence (at least we should be).

Nicola: Is there anything else you would like to share with the readers of the Graveyard Press?

Julia: “Believe nothing, O monks, merely because you have been told it…or because it is traditional, or because you yourselves have imagined it. Do not believe what your teacher tells you merely out of respect for the teacher. But whatsoever, after due examination and analysis, you find to be conducive to the good, the benefit, the welfare of all beings–that doctrine believe and cling to, and take it as your guide.” ~Attributed to Buddha

Now apply this quote to living your life as a vampyre.

Just breathe…every breath is miraculous, no matter what kind of Being you are. Every life-force (through blood and/or psi) that we “breathe” in, we also “breathe” back out into the Universe. We take the life’s energy, heal it, evolve it…then we “breathe” it back out to be once again assimilated into the endless continuum of Universal Energy. Just keep breathing…

Just breathe…every breath is miraculous, no matter what kind of Being you are. Every life-force (through blood and/or psi) that we “breathe” in, we also “breathe” back out into the Universe. We take the life’s energy, heal it, evolve it…then we “breathe” it back out to be once again assimilated into the endless continuum of Universal Energy. Just keep breathing…

Evolve dammit!

Tempe Brennan shares a message to the reader, amidst thrilling tales of murder and mayhem.
The two newest novels in the Temperance Brennan saga contain serious messages about professionalism and the mission of forensic anthropologists. The author, Kathy Reichs, is a board certified Forensic Anthropologist, who works for the Laboratoire de sciences judiciaires et de medicine legale for the Provence of Quebec. She is a professor at the UNC-Charlotte, and former vice president of the American Acadamy of Forensic Sciences and the American Board of Forensic Anthropology. All this and she writes crime novels that inspired the hit Fox TV show Bones, that she also serves as an executive producer for. After such a long and diverse professional history, she has a lot of real experience to draw on to form compelling stories for her novels.
In 206 Bones Reichs’s alter ego Temperance Brennan is dealing with having been kidnapped. As she slowly comes aware of her surroundings after having been buried alive she remembers the twists and turns of the many cases she had been working as well as the personal issues she faced recently as she tries to figure out when and where she is and who is her unseen enemy. From identifying remains of older women who were brutally murdered, to helping a friend of her soon to be ex-husbands family find answers for a missing grandson she spends a complex winter in the frigid north, while missing her home in South Carolina. She is dealing with her ex-boyfriend and partner Ryan’s making friends with her ex-husband’s family as she tries to prepare for the holidays with them. And with an unknown enemy claiming she is incompetent and falsified cause of death on an old case she worked on. Soon both her work, and the work of the pathologists that she works with in Quebec are called into scrutiny as a bullet track is seemingly ignored by the pathologist assigned to a murder investigation and finger bones go missing that are crucial to identification on the case that Tempe is working on. I won’t give away any more details that that, but I will tell you that the epilogue from Reichs files talks about professional conduct and certification. The moral of the tale is that just because you wear a lab coat does not make you an expert. That it is important to have the education and certification in your field, and that unfortunately not all courts recognize the difference between a lab tech and a forensic specialist.

In Spider Bones Tempe is once again working in Quebec when a mysterious body appears in a small lake that is identified by fingerprints as a man who died in Vietnam. The case takes Tempe home to North Carolina to exhume the soldier’s grave, and then to Hawaii to the labs of the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command in order to find answers as to who the man in the lake and the man buried in the soldier’s grave really are. Throw in shark attacks, The Sons of Samoa, death threats, Ryan and his heroin addict daughter, and her own daughter Katy’s longtime boyfriend Coop having been murdered by insurgents while attempting to return from a humanitarian mission in Afghanistan. The message of this novel is certainly that any death is tragic, and that every human deserves the respect of being identified and returned to their loved ones. Reichs brings to public awareness the JPAC motto and mission, “Until they are home” and provides contact information for various agencies in the military to contact for information about missing American soldiers. And this is a noble mission indeed.

Nicola A. Jones

A Sweet Treat for Anytime

Posted: Wednesday, 21 December, 2011 by nicolajones in Food & Fun
Tags: , ,

A Sweet Treat for Anytime
Nicola A. Jones

This holiday I decided to try a variety of new cookie recipes. I found a wonderful recipe for applesauce-honey cookies, which after making the kids simply adored. The recipe tells you to chill the dough for one hour, but I found that it worked better if you leave it in the fridge for longer. The dough is also very soft, so if you wanted to you could easily add half a cup of rolled oats to increase the nutritional value of the cookie, and make it somewhat stiffer of dough. Make sure that you thoroughly coat the surface you are working on in flour as well as your hands because the dough is very sticky because of the honey in the recipe. The taste of the cookie is very mild apple tasting, and can easily be spiced up with additional cinnamon and ginger, or you might think about adding dried apple chunks, dried cranberries, orange peel, or nuts to the dough. You can also make up a big batch, and keep it stored in the fridge for up to a week as long as it is sealed tightly in plastic wrap and wax paper. The cookies keep well in air tight containers, and make a nice sweet after school snack or accompany tea well.

The following recipe comes from Great American Home Baking, which was a mail order card recipe program during the 90’s. There is no publisher listed, or publication dates.

Applesauce-Honey Cookies
10 minutes preparation, 1 hour chilling, 14 minutes baking per batch
Makes 3 1/2 dozen cookies

2 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup (1 stick) butter, softened
½ cup firmly packed brown sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
½ cup unsweetened applesauce
1 tablespoon honey, at room temperature

1. Mix together flour, backing powder, cinnamon, ginger and salt.
2. Beat together butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar at medium speed until light and fluffy.
Beat in egg, applesauce, and honey. At low speed, beat in flour mixture until well combined. Shape dough into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap and chill for 1 hour.
3. Preheat oven to 375* F. Grease 2 baking sheets.
4. On a floured surface, using floured hands roll dough into 1-inch balls. Place cookies 2 inches apart, on prepared baking sheets. Using a floured fork, firmly flatten each cookie, leaving deep grooves.
5. Bake cookies until just set and golden, 14 minutes. Transfer baking sheets to wire racks to cool for 1 minute. Transfer cookies to racks to cool completely.
If you want to add in extra spices do so at step 1. I would recommend adding ¼ tsp. nutmeg and ¼ orange zest, but experiment and find the blend that you enjoy most. Try adding a ½ cup of rolled oats after blending in the flour mixture in step 2. Add dried fruit or nuts before shaping if you so desire. Keep in mind that at this point the consistency of the dough is like a thick sticky paste. The end results are light, fluffy cookies, which are moist and delicious. Happy baking everyone!

A Whole New Vampire Mythos

Posted: Saturday, 17 December, 2011 by nicolajones in Book Reviews
Tags: ,

A look at Blood Rights by Kristen Painter

Imagine a world not too far into the future, where a bitter world war has changed the face of the Earth and the poor use solar power for electricity, but the batteries only last a few hours into the night.  But these struggles are the least of humanities worries, as a sacred covenant between the sons of god and the daughters of man is about to be broken.  This is the setting for Kristen Painter’s Blood Rights, the first in the House of Comarrέ Trilogy.

Set in the year 2067 in the hidden city of Covinestri, Romania and Paradise City, New Florida the story unfolds in the hidden world of the supernatural hidden from human eyes by the covenant.  The world of the supernatural is made up of the children of the fallen angels, called Castus Sanguis. These children are the races of Fae, Noble Vampire, and Varcolai which are shape shifters.  Also inhabiting this hidden world are the Fringe Vampires descendents of Judas Iscariot and the Comarrέ a race of humans bred to have the purest blood and serve as concubines to the Noble Vampires.

As the story unfolds we learn secrets that the Comarrέ keep, from the point of view of the main character Chrysabelle.  She has fled the life of the Comarrέ after her patron was murdered, sending her running to Paradise City, and eventually the protection of Malkom an outcast Noble Vampire who lives under a curse that says he will kill anyone he drinks from.  At Malkom’s side are Maddoc the Varcolai under a witches curse whose life Malkom saved, and Fiona a ghost who haunts Malkom as part of his curse.  Vibrant characters who join in the dark tale of bitter revenge, ancient magics, and unholy beings.  The reader is drawn into the story, and can be captivated by the light and dark elements of the hidden world and left waiting for the next installment.

Nicola A. Jones

Cover

Haunting Beauty is a part of Erin Quinn’s Mists of Ireland series, but is easy to follow as a stand-alone novel. Highlighting the power of love, sacrifice, and the terrible power of greed and evil it is as far from a romance novel as one can find, yet still be in that genre.
Psychic powers, time travel, and spirits exist in this mesmerizing tale of a magical island off the coast of Ireland. The book might be classified as a paranormal romance novel, but the truth is it is more a tale of the mysterious Book of Fennore. It is the story of a young woman Danni Jones, who struggles with a forgotten past, and having been abandoned at age five by her mother. But most importantly, Danni has visions of the past and the dead. Then one day a man shows up at her door, sent to find her and bring her home to the Isle of Fennore, and her long forgotten family. Sean Ballagh is a man who is a mystery in so many ways, and as the story unfolds we find that he is not even aware of what he is. Caught in the tragedy of his father’s suicide and the loss of his mother and bother Sean does not understand his own role in both changing the present and the past. As Sean and Danni get sucked into their shared past, days before Danni’s life is shattered, they find the truth of the mythical Book of Fennore, and love.