Category Archives: Reluctant Medium Misc.

Name the Reluctant Medium’s Spirit Wolf

Help Name Rachel Blackstone’s Spirit Wolf

White Wolf Free Wallpaper

White Wolf
Free Wallpaper

Rachel Blackstone’s spirit animal is a white wolf. He alerts her to danger and stands with her when she needs him. The ghostly lobo can change its size, light its body and intimidate those intent on harming his mistress.

I’d like to name this magical wolf. Help me choose his name. Vote in the poll below.

I’ll announce the wolf’s new name in a week. Thank you for participating.

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FREE Sunday June 23, 2013 “Reluctant Medium” a Paranormal Fantasy/Mystery

FREE June 23, 2013 only. Paranormal Fantasy/Mystery “Reluctant Medium.”

Available only at Amazon

Available only at Amazon. Click here.

Oops! Just one moment of inattention and Rachel Blackstone’s life changed forever. She wanted to talk with her father’s spirit, instead a malevolent soul materialized when she performed a Native American ritual to return the dead. The reporter soon discovers she now has “talents” she doesn’t want; like seeing ghosts, both human and animal. But it’s the resurrected spirit she must somehow return before more deaths occur. She and best friend Chloe search the streets of Santa Fe to uncover the mystery of a housing project that may just connect to her father’s death and the evil walking among them.

(A Paranormal Fantasy/Mystery. Mild horror effects, profanity and humor.)

See how it all began. “Lemurian Medium” due out August 2013.

Here’s the link or click on the book cover above:

Does Adventure Die With Childhood?

Adventure Fantasy: Why I Write

When I began writing fiction I was certain that mysteries were what I wanted to write. I’d read all of Agatha Christie’s books as a child, but by contrast, I read a lot of Stephen King as well. I just swear too much to fit into the cozy genre. I know very little about guns which kind of places the police procedural or crime drama out of reach as well. But I can’t get enough of paranormal anything and everything so I went for a paranormal mystery. And yes, there is a mystery in “Reluctant Medium” in that Rachel’s father died mysterious. Was it an accident? Was it a murder?

Windsurfing Adventure Public Domain

Windsurfing Adventure
Public Domain

After publishing, I even placed the book in the mystery category, but as I wrote the next in the series, “Lemurian Medium,” things took an even stranger turn. It has to do with the lost continent of Lemuria (also called Mu). And Rachel has to learn to travel the astral plane—reluctantly of course—to get there. And she will have to ride a dragon to escape. Okay, so we’re definitely getting into new territory, unexplored parts.

My wonderful, supportive Florida friend, I’ll call her Cherie, is a voracious reader. She introduced me to some of her favorite authors: Charlaine Harris and Laurell K. Hamilton. Then I discovered Patricia Briggs, Debora Geary, Jim Butcher and Elizabeth Hunter. Oh my, yes, good company indeed.

I did some research—something I love to do—and discovered the genre of fantasy, which is actually a subgenre of science fiction. It has a paranormal sub-subgenre and I went for it.

And here’s what fantasy is all about. Somewhere around the time we say “I do,” we take on a mortgage, a lawn and begin painting our house as a hobby. All that adventure we thought we’d enjoy as an adult evaporated. Most of us will not see the world, visit the space station or explore the Amazon rain forest. We’ll be too busy paying bills, doing laundry and oh yeah, painting our house, to be that adventurous person who lives deep inside ourselves.

Hiking the Inca Trail Bridge, Wikipedia Commons

Hiking the Inca Trail Bridge, Wikipedia Commons

We yearn for that incredible discovery that long-distance hiking or third-world travel holds. And while we may not want to dive out of an airplane or bungee-jump off Victoria Falls that thirst for the incredible journey won’t go away.

Which leads me to why I write fantasy. When I write this kind of story I can explore continents that may never have existed—but what if they had? What if there were dragons and we just haven’t found their remains yet? What if there is an astral plane and we can travel it? Where else can I fight (through my character) an ancient MesoAmerican deity that snacks on humans?

Rachel Blackstone can certainly do cynical, sarcastic and funny. She can also swear with the best of them. And on occasion, she and her friend Chloe smoke a bit of pot. And after dispensing evil spirits, Dracs and self-important (and hungry) antique deities, with the help of her spirit wolf and dead shaman friend, Rachel goes home, curls up with her psychic cat and writes her latest assignment.

Space Station, NASA Wikipedia Commons

Space Station, NASA
Wikipedia Commons

The answer to our lack of adventure is fantasy. The truly wonderful part of this book-writing thing; I get to go along too! We take this adventure together.

I hope you’ll share this trip with me. “Lemurian Medium” is due out September 1, 2013. It’s a fun story with a bit of fact and a bit of mythology—at least we think it’s mythological. What if it’s not? Hmmm.

Copyright G G Collins Available at Amazon

Copyright G G Collins
Available at Amazon

Read the adventures of the Reluctant Medium from the beginning.

“Atomic Medium” is already in the works. It will include alternative history, time travel and a space alien or two. After that, well, I feel a vampire story coming on. Maybe I can research that at a blood bank—or maybe not. One thing is certain, it will be fun.

— G G Collins

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Missing in Action: One Dragon

Where’s My Dragon?!

You know how it goes, you buy something you’re going to use for writing a book and when you reach that point in the story line, it’s nowhere to be found. That’s what happened to me. When it came time to write about the dragon, well, I couldn’t find my dragon.

How to Train Your Dragon (film)

How to Train Your Dragon (film) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Before you start imagining I have a dragon entrenched at the closest dragon stable, munching on hay and barn rats, and only occasionally catching his stall on fire, let me just stop you. There is a rumor that dragons aren’t real. Mind you, that’s just a rumor. Just because no archaeologist has dug up the skeletal remains of one, doesn’t mean they never existed. We haven’t found proof Lemuria existed either, but well, there are those ruins off the coast of Japan. But I digress.

How to Train Your Dragon Find it at Amazon

How to Train Your Dragon
Find it at Amazon

My dragon is the action figure from How to Train Your Dragon, the animated movie from a couple years ago. It had been hanging from various lamps and pieces of furniture for many months, and I guess I got tired of dusting it and so put it away—but where?

The search began. First it was my closet, flashlight in hand, I checked every nook and cranny, the overhead with the pillows and blankets, the rack holding all those sensible shoes, and finally the plastic bags that hold tiny stuffed animals (the cute bat, the black cat) I couldn’t resist years ago. Then back to my office to look in the antique secretary and the more modern desk and credenza. Maybe it’s behind the incense I bought for research when I wrote my first book? Nope. How about the stacks of photos that litter the lower shelf in the credenza? Or next to the crystal ball? Zilch, nada, zip, nuf sed.

Okay, now I’ve scattered the remains of my occasional cards, The Associated Press Stylebook I use for editing and the leavings from other writing projects. Nothing! I’m beginning to panic. I should have been more careful. This was an important research tool, and I can’t finish my second in the Rachel Blackstone Paranormal Mystery Series without it. How could I have been so careless?

I retrace my steps. Closet, secretary, desk, credenza. Check, check, check and check. This is quite the dilemma. Then an idea comes to mind: bedside table? Top drawer? No again. Middle drawer? Still no. Bottom drawer? Yes! Yes! There it is! His wings had been removed, but I find them among my scarves, nestled safely. I put him back together. He’s perfect, so cute.

My Dragon Action Figure Copyright G G Collins

My Dragon Action Figure
Copyright G G Collins

Crisis averted, back to writing. I have my dragon and he adds depth and fun and adventure to Lemurian Medium. I’m coming to the end of the story, and the dragon plays an important role in the conclusion. Things aren’t going well in Lemuria. There are earthquakes and a volcano is erupting. Rachel Blackstone must get back to the astral plane in time to take the red-eye back to Earth in her time and place. And a little dragon helps her out. A real one of course, not the toy action figure that lies next to my computer.

Funny thing. Did you know the ancient civilizations—although they lived in a time when there was no way to know one another or travel for a visit—they had two things in common: they built pyramids and they all had depictions of dragons. Hmmm?

— G G Collins

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G G Collins Interviewed by Scott May 8, 2013

Reluctant Medium Author G G Collins to be Interviewed May 8, 2013 at

G G Collins outside Santa Fe to hike. Where is that backpack?

G G Collins outside Santa Fe to hike. Where is that backpack?

Check out next Wednesday and learn more about G G Collins. What does she have in common with a beauty pageant contestant? What are her favorite places to eat and shop in Santa Fe? What’s the astral plane and how does it fit into her next book Lemurian Medium, due out this summer? Find out what she reads: the good, the mediocre and the downright weird. Learn how reporting can fine tune your skills for book writing. And what about her fixation with Jensen Ackles of the WC’s Supernatural? 

Reluctant Medium found itself in the Amazon’s Top 100 a couple weeks ago during a free promotional weekend. It finished #3 in Mystery/Women Sleuths and #5 in Fantasy/Paranormal. Thanks to all for making that happen.

Available only at Amazon

Available only at Amazon

For more information about Reluctant Medium check out:

While you’re there take a look at Scott’s books: The Five Elements and The Hall of the Wood. He too is a fantasy writer.

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Reluctant Medium Hits Amazon’s Top 100 List!

Reluctant Medium Thanks You for Fabulous Free Promotion Weekend

Kindle eBook Copyright G G Collins

Kindle eBook
Copyright G G Collins

My sincere thanks to all of you who made Reluctant Medium’s Free Promo Weekend a major success. By the completion of the promotion, Reluctant Medium was #68 on Amazon’s Top 100 List!

It came in at #3 in the Mystery/Women Sleuths Category and #5 in the Fantasy/Paranormal Category. There’s some fine company in these realms.

Thank you to everyone who took a chance on a new series. This kind of thing is so encouraging. Gives me renewed energy to finish Lemurian Medium which I hope to publish this summer.

Happy reading!

— G G Collins

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Free for 2 Days: Reluctant Medium at Amazon, April 13 & 14, 2013

Reluctant Medium Free on Amazon April 13 & 14, 2013

Available Free at AmazonApril 13 & 14, 2013

Available Free at Amazon
April 13 & 14, 2013

Once you have opened the gates of hell, there is no return.

All Rachel Blackstone wants is to talk with her father; solve the mystery of how he died. Using a Native American ceremony given to her by a shaman, she summons him in this contemporary paranormal fantasy. Instead, a soul intent on revenge slips through and threatens people she loves. Now the Santa Fe, New Mexico reporter must follow the evil spirit, uncover its purpose and send it back. The shape-shifter has horrific powers. Rachel is tormented by what she has unleashed. There’s more. She’s seeing dead people; which frankly give her the creeps. Some are helpful; others lead her away from the truth. One spirit, a lone wolf, seems to have an uncertain allegiance. What she, and friend Chloe, uncover is an earthly scam involving both the quick and the dead. Rachel must play a dangerous game of supernatural treasure hunt to stop the ruthless ghost. To survive, she must discover her own powers during a climatic storm of earth, wind and fire. To fail is to die.

Contains: mild horror effects, profanity, humor.

Crystals for Astral Travel

Rachel Blackstone Prepares for Her Astral Journey

The answer next week.


The answer is: All three crystals. Each has a purpose in astral travel. 

Blue Lace Agate: Wards off psychic attacks on the astral plane.

Lemurian Seed Crystal: Aids communication & carries knowledge.

Amethyst: Eases anxiety during any kind of travel.


Interview With Book Character

Interview with Rachel Blackstone, the “Reluctant Medium”

as told to G G Collins

Reluctant Mediumcopyright G G Collins

Reluctant Medium
copyright G G Collins

What is your author like? My author drives me nuts! By the way, her name is G G Collins and I’m her character, Rachel Blackstone. Yes, (yawn) I’m the Reluctant Medium. But back to G G, it’s not the late night writing that annoys me—I’m a night owl too—but all the outlandish stuff she has me do. You know, she thinks it up, but she doesn’t have to do it. I do. In the first book, I had to break and enter, send my car into an arroyo, tramp around Tent Rocks in the middle of the night, all the while coping with bad men and an evil spirit. Geez, and I still had to make all my deadlines. This time, I swear it’s true, she sending me traveling on the astral plane! You know, there is no map available, no app (but I don’t do cell phones anyway) and the auto club has never heard of it. That leaves me hoofing through the whole thing practically in blinders (ooh, too many equestrian references).

Tell me about the place where you live. Santa Fe, New Mexico is known as the City Different, because of its unique adobe architecture. In reality, it’s the city same, because all the buildings look similar with flat roofs and stucco facade. They’re all painted in one of the approved brown colors, although you occasionally see a white house where obviously an independent type lives. But, the high desert climate attracts artists from all over who come to paint the

The Shed, Welcoming on any DayCourtesy The Shed

The Shed, Welcoming on any Day
Courtesy The Shed

beautiful vistas that are Santa Fe. It is a place where people who don’t fit where they were born, can find acceptance being different. I love to hike and ski in the Sangre de Cristos. But mostly, I enjoy eating the spicy southwest foods with friend Chloe. We’re especially fond of The Shed and its yummy margaritas. Oh yes, the food is good too.

What is your family like? This gets complicated. Both parents are dead. My father was killed recently in a car wreck and I don’t think it was an accident. Now, the brother is the mayor, but he’s, well, shall we say unpopular. He cheats on his wife with all the lovely young clerks at city hall. I’m pretty sure he’s runs low and fast with the law, but have no proof. He thinks I’m “unbalanced” and “flaky.” I’m married, currently, but things aren’t going well. After my father died, I took a powder and split town for a few months. Anthony is a documentary producer and is feeling the pangs of those first wrinkles and what his Hollywood connections might think. He medicates with alcohol. I’m not sure it’s going to work out.

Who is your best friend in the world and what is she like? That would be Chloe, who might as well be family, but sometimes friends are better. She’s a very, make that very, successful real estate mogul in a city full of them. Although she’s been married a couple times (I’m not sure how many), she kept the last name of Valdez in the divorce settlement because it seemed to help with selling houses here in the southwest. We’re not entirely opposites, but she’s high-fashion and heels and I’m comfortable in flat shoes I can run in. You never know when you might need to make a hasty exit. Chloe loves to accompany me on journalistic stakeouts, you know mixing with the rift-raft—but she caters it! I mean before she tagged along the first time, I did just fine with green chile cheese burritos and some instant tea. Chloe changed that forever. Oh yes, and I must tell you, she’s into everything that could possibly be called New Age. I mean it, everything. She really embraced this medium thing. I’m not going there, no way.

What is the thing you are most proud of? Definitely following in my father’s footsteps, the family business: reporting. He was an award-winning journalist in New Mexico at the Albuquerque Journal. I write for a magazine with serious liberal leanings. Writing is in our bloodlines, but the brother must have had a transfusion. Oh well (shakes her head), moving on. I love to interview. The most important thing is how you connect with a person to help them feel comfortable and get the best story. But I find the research side engaging too. It’s a “wow” moment when I find that infinitesimal scrap of information that ties it altogether. Pulling it all into a readable story that informs or helps the reader is the final touch. I love it all, but lately things have been a bit strange. I’m searching for normal, you know, before the spirit thing. It creeps me out!

Hot Tub at 10,000 Wavescopyright G G Collins

Hot Tub at 10,000 Waves
copyright G G Collins

If you had a day to do anything you wanted, what would you do? That’s a tough one. I’d sleep late, eat something for breakfast slathered in green chile, call Chloe and go skiing. After an afternoon on the slopes, we stop by 10,000 Waves, get a massage and soak in a hot tub. Then on to dinner and of course, I’ll buy the drinks because Chloe always beats me down the mountain. But this never happens all in one day because there is always another deadline to meet. I’d be real happy if all my interviews were on time and my computer doesn’t lock up.

What is your home like? Anthony and I have a bit of a posh place in the hills north of Santa Fe’s downtown. He makes good money, I don’t. He worries about status and since we have been known to “entertain” Hollywood types, he wanted a certain look. I guess you could call it modern southwest for want of a better term. It has clean lines and we have a lovely woman who comes and cares for it. It’s not my thing however. When I lost my mind one night and fled New Mexico, I found a small house in a once elegant neighborhood. Okay, it’s a bit of a dump, but I like it. I feel another change coming on. If there is one thing I like, it’s a fresh start.

Lamps & Flowers in the Plazacopyright G G Collins

Lamps & Flowers in the Plaza
copyright G G Collins

What is your most prized possession? That would have to be my car. I bought it on impulse the night I fled my life. It’s a big, make that BIG, navy Mercury Marquis. The Merc guzzles gas, but is “Ride Engineered” and it is smooth. But oh my, it does not fit Santa Fe’s narrow streets and tight alleys. And just try to park it! Now Chloe hates it. Doesn’t want to be seen in it, and often offers to have it detailed. I admit it is a bit messy. I don’t mean for it to happen, but somehow it fills up with notebooks, tapes (I’m old fashioned, no digital recorders), the remains of meals and whatever clothes might land in the back seat. So there you have it. It’s my declaration of independence.

How would you describe yourself? Haven’t I been describing myself? Oh, I guess that’s kind of rude. Okay, you already know I’m a reporter, with a bad marriage, and a roué for a brother. What you don’t know is that I’m not child friendly and I swear a lot. I eat an awful diet, despite Chloe’s efforts, and I never gain a pound. Now you hate me, right? I take all kinds of risks, professional and personal. That’s probably why I tried to return my father from the great beyond. Unfortunately, I lost concentration for a moment, and another soul slipped through. He’s undoubtedly evil and seems to be angry with my brother. Despite my sparkling relationship with Santa Fe’s so-so mayor, I don’t want him hurt. The disturbing part is that I’m seeing other spirits too. And there is the lone wolf. I don’t know how he fits in. I tell you, this medium stuff is exhausting. I’m sure it’s just a one-time thing. Don’t you?

Cover of "Stella Dallas"

Cover of Stella Dallas

English: Publicity Still from Barbara Stanwyck...

English: Publicity Still from Barbara Stanwyck’s ‘Stella Dallas’, a 1937 film. The role earned her the nomination for an Academy Award for Best Actress. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Where do you work? I write for High Desert Country. It’s located on a one-way street in an old adobe house. It has a fish pond in the yard that we never have time to enjoy, but Julian (my boss) hides the keys to the office in the pond. Everyone in town knows where they are. Julian hired me shortly after he and Stella Dallas (her mother loved Barbara Stanwyck) launched the magazine. The cast of characters includes Shorty, who of course, isn’t, short that is. He’s our photographer and keeps the ancient photocopier working. He reads motorcycle magazines between assignments. But someone new has been added in my absence. Julian’s conservative nephew has come onboard, a product of nepotism, despite the fact that his uncle can’t stand him either. It’s interesting. Stop by anytime, the nice woman across the street bakes goodies for us on a regular basis. You can always watch TV with Stella. She’ll say “hello” when you walk in. Me? I’ll be pounding out a story two desks back.


“Reluctant Medium” available at Smashwords for $.99 with coupon number until December 10th. Enter the coupon code prior to completing checkout at Smashwords:  WW77S


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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