Monthly Archives: September 2012

Psychic Question

Answer next week.

Walking in Santa Fe

Make Like a Tourist

Reluctant Medium Rachel Blackstone’s favorite time of year is autumn. Funny, we’re alike in that way. Since blog posts eat photos like mad, I thought I’d make like a tourist and head out with the camera. Taking pictures like a first-time visitor is actually a little embarrassing, but the journalist urges me onward.

W San Francisco St
Lensic PAC
copyright G G Collins

The weather is great in Santa Fe right now, although if you enjoy a high desert climate, it’s nearly always terrific weather. I took off down West San Francisco headed toward the plaza. “I was walking with my feet ten feet off” the street. For those of you who don’t recognize this, it’s from a Cher song entitled “Walking in Memphis.” If you don’t know Cher (US singer/actress), she recorded the song in 1995. It was used in an episode of The X-Files, but wasn’t the hit several of her other songs became. Originally sung by singer-songwriter Marc Cohn, it is about a spiritual awakening in Memphis. Here is a YouTube link to hear the song:

There are days like that in the City Different when the senses are keen and the spirit is awakening. This is such a day. As I pass the Lensic Performing Arts, I marvel at how it was transformed from a 1931 theatre where anything from vaudeville to first-run movies was showcased to a swank new PAC. But the 800-seat theatre was in

Lensic PAC Notice Detail
copyright G G Collins

danger of becoming permanently dark, when it was saved by a group of visionaries. They saw a new beginning for a building on the verge of losing its  groove. There was a multi-story addition to the rear of the building and the interior was carefully restored to its stunning ornate decor. It hosts more than 200 events a year.

The Original Trading Post
copyright G G Collins

Also on San Francisco you’ll find The Original Trading Post. Reputed to have been in Santa Fe since 1603, it is protected by the Historic Santa Fe Foundation Preservation Easement program.” I remember the first time I saw it, I wasn’t at all certain I should enter. It looked ready to collapse. But not to worry, it’s stood many years since then. It has virtually everything you could possibly want for New Mexico gifts to take home: post cards, key chains, worry stones, cups, clothing, Native American pottery, on and on. Beware, the floors squeak unmercifully which is part of the charm. It makes no excuses. It’s kitschy and fun.

Burro Alley Sculpture
copyright G G Collins

Burro Alley (you’ll know you’re there when you see the burro sculpture) was a wild patch in the 1800s: gambling parlors, bars and for the indiscriminate “gentleman,” ladies of the night were available for a price, usually the winnings from the card game. But the street was named after the sturdy little burros who pulled wagons of wood to be sold in the alley. Streets and sidewalks along here—and many other areas of downtown—intersect like the people who settled here.

At last, the plaza comes into view; I try to see it like someone who has never been there. It is sun splashed under a perfect azure sky. The trees are mature and tall. Flowers hang from old-fashioned street lamps. Both the present and

First View of Plaza
W San Francisco Meets Lincoln
copyright G G Collins

the past occupy the plaza. The monument in the center has had the word “savage” scratched out. It represents the past. In the present, people dot the square, some rushing to their next appointment while others sit on the benches and feed the pigeons or snap photos. The Palace of the Governors’ long portal shades Native Indian artists showing their wares on colorful blankets. At least 30 people browse, ask questions, squat for a closer look and buy a beautiful memory from Santa Fe.

I don’t know if it’s the high mountain air (Santa Fe sits at 7,000 feet) or the brilliant sky. Maybe it’s the aroma of roasting chiles or the aspens that are

Lamp & Flowers in the Plaza
copyright G G Collins

turning golden on Mt. Baldy. It could be the abundant creativity in the city. It’s a magnet for writers and artists of all walks. But there is an energy that can’t be denied, and why would anyone want to?

Why not go walking in your city?

— G G Collins

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Amazon Authors Free Book Promotion

Here is a link for Amazon authors for free book promotion. 

I read about this on Goodreads. This the link:

Check it out and see if it’s right for you.



“Lemurian Medium” Sample Chapter Sneak Peak

Click on “Sample Chapter” Tab Above

Read the Opening Scene from Forthcoming “Lemurian Medium.”

White Wolf
Free Wallpaper

Thanks for your interest. The second in the Reluctant Medium Series will be available early next year–or by the holidays if I can pull it off!

Coming this weekend: Sample “Lemurian Medium”

Lemurian Medium to Debut First Chapter This Weekend. Watch the “Sample Chapter” Page.

White Wolf like Rachel’s Spirit Animal
Photo Public Domain

Sometime this weekend, I’ll post the first chapter of the “Lemurian Medium.” It’s final edit is subject to change as the book progresses, but it will provide a teaser for the forthcoming book.

In the book our Reluctant Medium will visit the astral plane in search of a friend who disappears in an, shall we say, unconventional way. Rachel, Chloe, Rachel’s new cat with psychic abilities and of course, the spirit wolf, will all be back. Several new characters will be adding to the intrigue, each a bit strange in their own way.

Stay tuned. GG

Who Is Your Spirit Animal?

How to Meet Your Spirit Animal

In the Reluctant Medium, reporter Rachel Blackstone didn’t go looking for her spirit animal, it came to her. It first appeared the evening she attempted the ceremony to return the dead. She heard it howling in her neighborhood where there are no wolves. And then later, she saw it for the first time on a deserted highway in the middle of the night. At first, it frightened her, but later she began to realize it probably didn’t mean her harm—but did it mean to be helpful?

Straight From the Horse’s Mouth
by Amelia Kinkade
Available at Amazon

We all have spirit animals. You may already know yours. If not and you’d like to, there is a wonderful exercise in Amelia Kinkade’s book Straight from the Horse’s Mouth. It’s called “Contacting Your Spirit Guide” in Chapter 3. I like her books about animal communication very much. When I did the exercise, I visualized going inside a cave and following the twisting corridors underground. You can imagine this however you like. Kinkade gives you several options.

Eventually, I came to an opening or portal where I left the cave and entered a clearing in the woods. To one side of this lovely opening in the forest was a boulder, perfect for sitting. I observed the stream bubble nearby. I marveled at the full moon and the passing clouds, the many stars watching over me.

Kinkade tells you to wait for your spirit animal, rather than go looking for it. It might fly out of the trees, hop out of the stream, or appear in your sanctuary. Mine came out of the trees. While I was certain it would be some kind of cat or a horse, I was wrong. It was a wolf. And because I am familiar with this creature now, I gave my character a wolf spirit animal too.

You may find as times passes, that you have secondary spirit animals. These may help you in different ways. You may already know them. Is there a particular bird, insect or reptile you click with? Do you trap and carry out insects from your home? I keep a glass that I can carefully place over the insect, slide a small piece of cardboard or envelope under it and then release the bug outside. Gandhi said: “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.” I extend that to bugs too.

Animal Speak
by Ted Andrews
available at Amazon

There are other books about spirit animals. I also like Animal-Speak: The Spiritual & Magical Powers of Creatures Great & Small by Ted Andrews. He also does the exercise, but I thought Kinkade did a longer, more detailed one. But Andrews, who has written other books on spirit guides and related subjects, describes animal, bird, insect and reptile totems. He describes the wolf as a guardian who is ritualistic, loyal and spiritual. The wolf’s power is constant especially during the full moon.

Another source I like is Medicine Cards by Jamie Sams and David Carson. It comes with animal cards. I’m so glad I bought their Medicine Cards Just For Today when they first came out. You might locate some used ones on the internet. Every day I choose a card and they have some words of wisdom. For instance, the swan card says: “Accept the gift of grace/ Surrender to the flow/ Don’t give up—give over.” I love beginning my day with these Medicine Cards.

Medicine Cards
by Jamie Sams & David Carson
available at Amazon

Because the wolf is a teacher and pathfinder, if I were lost, I would look out for a wolf to give me directions. For our Reluctant Medium, her wolf is white and sometimes glows. Although she is uncomfortable with having a spirit animal, she begins to realize that his many gifts might help her along the way. Look for more of Rachel’s wolf guide in the forthcoming Lemurian Medium. She faces challenges for which she is unprepared and her wolf will be there to help out whenever he is needed.

I hope you enjoy discovering your spirit animal.


— G G Collins

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Reluctant Medium Nominated for the One Lovely Blog Aware

Reluctant Medium Didn’t See This One Coming

My thanks to Jiltaroo for nominating the Reluctant Medium at Large in Santa Fe for the One Lovely Blog Award. Being a novice blogger, I didn’t even know it existed, but thank you, thank you.

I understand these are the requests when you are nominated:

1. Include the blog award logo in your post. (Check)

2. Thank the person who nominated you. (Check)

3. Nominate 15 other people.

4. Tell 7 random things about yourself.  (Hmmm)

I’ll  be back later to work on these. Thanks Jiltaroo! G G Collins


15 people and their blogs: In no particular order.


Seven random things about me:

I believe animals communicate with us

My spirit animal is a wolf

I’m a chile head (that’s a person who likes chiles)

I like The Shed’s margaritas best (see below for story on The Shed)

My favorite place to shop in Santa Fe is Jackalope (see below for story)

I’m a Francophile

I enjoy Canadian and British TV programs


Meet Chile Pod, the Reluctant Medium’s New Friend

Cutest Cat in the Cosmos

Meet Chile Pod
Kitty Pal to Reluctant Medium
copyright G G Collins

The little tortoiseshell cat came with the house Rachel Blackstone, the Reluctant Medium, bought after her divorce. No one knew she was there. Her first companion died in an accident. When his family came to clean out the house, they didn’t see the cat.

Thanks to actor Logan Masters who was filming in New Mexico and became a friend of Rachel’s, the cat was saved. Rachel wasn’t a cat person at first, but Logan was. He scooped up the cat in his arms as Rachel watched in surprise. A few minutes later, with cat hair all over his expensive jacket, she knew the cat was staying on after she bought the house.

A couple days later, Rachel stopped by to feed the small creature, even before she closed on the house. On one such occasion, the evil spirit appeared and the cat’s psychic intuition was revealed. Chile Pod bristled and headed for the comfort of a tree the moment she noticed the spirit’s presence. Rachel was trying to figure out what was wrong when it became evident.

By the end of the story in the Reluctant Medium, she had decided on a name: Chile Pod. She chose it because of the cat’s mottled fur colors. It reminded her of how chiles change from green to red. The pepper’s skin becomes spotted with different colors as it matures.

Chile Changing Colors
copyright G G Collins

Chile Pod realizes her first human won’t be returning, but this new one is growing on her—although this person is a bit strange. Currently, Rachel’s learning about astral projection, and it’s a crash course, because a friend has literally disappeared into a painting at a gallery showing. She needs to become skilled at projection quickly to save her friend from a strange vegetative prison in the forthcoming Lemurian Medium.

One thing’s for certain, Chile Pod will be around helping any way she can. She knows when spirits and other creepy visitors are about to appear at Rachel’s little house in the South Capital area of Santa Fe. But mostly, she enjoys curling up on the warm computer printer and chowing down on spicy burritos her Auntie Chloe brings her.

— G G Collins

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Reluctant Medium Goes Wild and Free: Sept 2 & 3

Thanks for Making the Free Promotion a Spectacular Success! 

Praise for the “Reluctant Medium”

* “Ms. Collins satisfies the thirst for the unusual in this book.satisfies the urges with shamans, ceremonies, and howling wolves. Along the way, i learned a little about journalism, real estate, and of course, Santa’ Fe.
What other places will we travel with our girl Rachel?.. looking forward to finding out!!!”  — 3jaysmom

* “Couldn’t stop reading, had to get to the end.”  — Mojo

* “This is a clever story idea. Collins tells it well with just the right amount of tongue-in-cheek Her descriptions of the desert southwest are vivid, and the dialogue is spot on. It is also a buddy story. Rachel’s relationship with her best friend and very wealthy real estate agent Chloe is rich, amusing and touching.”  — have book will read

Kindle eBook
Copyright G G Collins


Meet Chloe Valdez, the Reluctant Medium’s BFF

Here’s Chloe!

Chloe Valdez does real estate—she does it very well, a multi-million-dollar agent! She and her business partner own the hottest realty company in Santa Fe. Chloe has been married at least a of couple times (we’re not sure), but she kept the last name of Valdez because it helped with sales in New Mexico.

Her heritage is mostly French and she can swear in that language, and a couple of others. Unlike Rachel, Chloe is open to all things New Age and metaphysical. She thinks nothing of consulting soul navigators or psychics. A vegetarian, Chloe tries to introduce Rachel—who could exist only on green chile cheese burritos—to soy-based meals and herbal teas.

“But then I catch her pouring out the tea!” Chloe says in disgust. “Well, at least I persuaded her to practice yoga.”

Autumn in Santa Fe
Enjoy a Drive
copyright G G Collins

Now Chloe will be the first to admit that Rachel’s job is more fun than hers—but far less profitable. Whenever Rachel sets up a journalistic stakeout, Chloe has it catered. That’s right, catered! She chooses just the right wine for the occasion.

“You have to have the best wine for each surveillance,” she says. “For instance, if we’re keeping an eye on an Spanish subject, I think we can channel him better if we have a nice Cava, that’s a sparkling wine from the Penedés area. Now Rachel doesn’t care. She once said: ‘I don’t care if it’s Santa Clausan wine from the North Pole area!’ She’s impatient and doesn’t always appreciate the finer things.”

Rachel is sometimes—make that always—annoyed when Chloe is picking out clothing for the stakeout.

“She’s a high-heeled boot girl,” Rachel says, “I always wear shoes I can run in. You never know when you might need to make a quick exit. Who buys clothes for a stakeout? I mean really, who does that?”

Or a soak at
10,000 Waves
copyright G G Collins

But Chloe’s always there for Rachel when she has a quandary, which is much of the time. Chloe keeps three sizes of marijuana joints on hand. The size of the dilemma determines the dimensions of the smoke.

“Most issues are small,” Chloe says, “but you never know when you might need to light up the big guy.”

Despite Rachel’s endless journalistic fact-checking, Chloe’s totally open to any spirits and metaphysical occurrences.

“So why didn’t Chloe get the medium gig?” Rachel asks.

“Because I didn’t try to return the dead!” Chloe says. “But it sure opened a whole new set of adventures. I can’t wait for the next one.”

We hear it has to do with the disappearance of a friend, astral travel and a mysterious Spaniard. It’s entitled Lemurian Medium. 

“I’m up for it,” Chloe says. “How about you, Rachel?” Groans.

— G G Collins

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