Tuesday, April 29, 2014

The Making of a Horror Writer!

Blood Moons and Nightscapes Interview:


The Making of a Horror Writer:

I have to state something that I hope is not a cliché. But, I really believe writers are indeed born and not made. Of course, it takes years and years of work, reading, writing, and editing and editing and editing before things come together. This is definitely the making of a writer, but the initial stuff needs to be there. I couldn’t be a computer programmer or software engineer for all the oolong tea in China. It’s just not in me. However, I do have it in me and have had it in me to write and write till I get it right. If we’re born with the inspiration, if we want to write, then something is there. In The Unholy I had to keep going, the inspiration and compulsion were so strong that the energy literally felt as if it was electric and going to shoot out my fingertips and the top of my head if I didn’t write it out. The making of a horror writer, one who wants to write about the dark side and thrills of the psyche, is about doing what you feel when it comes to putting words on the page and letting no one dissuade you. There is discouragement, but that only comes when we need to step back a bit and rest. If we are patient and don’t enter into the Hades Hall of Abandoned Hope then we’ll find that energy returns. The making of a writer is about writing and never stopping the writing, letting it come together as it does in its own way and in its own time.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

All In A Book Review of The Unholy!

Sunday, April 6, 2014


Blog Tour + Review: The Unholy by Paul DeBlassie III

The Unholy by Paul DeBlassie III

Release Date: August 1, 2013
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Sunstone Press
Pages: 203
Format: eBook
Source: Review copy for Tour
Goodreads • Amazon • B&N • Kobo

A young curandera, a medicine woman, intent on uncovering the secrets of her past is forced into a life-and-death battle against an evil Archbishop. Set in the mystic land of Aztlan, The Unholy is a novel of destiny as healer and slayer. Native lore of dreams and visions, shape changing, and natural magic work to spin a neo-gothic web in which sadness and mystery lure the unsuspecting into a twilight realm of discovery and decision. Paul DeBlassie III, PhD, is a psychologist and writer living in his native New Mexico. A member of the Depth Psychology Alliance, the Transpersonal Psychology Association, and the International Association for Relational Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy, he has for over thirty years treated survivors of the dark side of religion.

Having witnessed her mother's death at age five, Claire has spent her entire life rejecting her heritage as a medicine woman. Instead, she focuses on her patients at the local psychiatric hospital, which is run by the Ecclesia Dei. However, when dark undertakings by the church's hierarchy begin to effect her patients and her personal life, Claire must assume her birthright as the sole remaining member of a prestigious line medicine woman.

In a town where everyone is under the Ecclesia Dei's thumb, Claire faces oppositions from all sides as she fights to unveil the corruption of the church. There is a sickness at the heart of the church that only she can cure.

The Unholy is certainly an ambitious undertaking: combining elements of mestizo culture, christianity, and classic fantasy tropes. DeBlassie's novel has a lot going on and sometimes it was difficult to keep everything straight, but it was entertaining every step of the way.

It's been a while since I've read a classic hero's journey, so it was kind of refreshing to be reacquainted with the archetype. Claire is a quintessential heroine: orphaned at a young age, refusing to assume her destiny/birthright, and, ultimately, reconciling her past with her future. It's a bit trite. I didn't mind in the slightest, but I can see how others might.

The main antagonist is the archbishop (don't worry, it's not a spoiler; you figure it out early on), and he actually confuses me. I mean, just as Claire is your archetypal heroine, he is your consummate villain--complete with a deal with the devil and everything! But occasionally there were shades of grey thrown into his character, but they were never fully expanded upon. It was unfortunate, really; DeBlassie could have given his villain another dimension but failed to do so. Actually, there were many characters who were never fully developed. It's understandable; the backstory to the plot was intricate and time-consuming. So it's really no surprise that some of the major-minor characters were flat, but it was still a little disappointing. I think I was just expecting a plot and characters as intricate as a Song of Ice and Fire (Game of Thrones) installment, though. Which is just ridiculous on my part.

But despite my hang-ups, I really did enjoy this story. It has a complicated background, but it is simplified by its adherence to a basic plot. Ultimately, it all balances out into a well-composed, engaging story that will have you admiring its peculiarities.

However, I have to add this disclaimer: I can easily see people being offended by its portrayal of religion, and I would caution reader's to take it with a grain of salt, so to speak. I personally didn't mind it--everyone is entitled to their own beliefs--but I certainly don't want to lead any reader astray. You have to be fairly confident that you can handle blatant contempt for what may or may not be your beliefs. If you can, this book is worth the read; if you are uncertain, I would suggest you hold off.

But as always, the choice is up to you! I enjoyed it--I think most will--but, as with all books, it's not for everyone.

So, if you want a well-written hero's journey, I would definitely add this to your shelf.

About the Author

Paul DeBlassie III, Ph.D., is a psychologist and writer living in Albuquerque, New Mexico who has treated survivors of the dark side of religion for more than 30 years. He is a member of theDepth Psychology Alliance, the Transpersonal Psychology Association and the International Association for Relational Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy. Dr. DeBlassie writes psychological thrillers with an emphasis on the dark side of the human psyche. In The Unholy, a young curandera, a medicine woman, intent on uncovering the secrets of her past is forced into a life-and-death battle against an evil archbishop. Set in the mystic land of Aztlan, The Unholy is a novel of destiny as healer and slayer. Native lore of dreams and visions lure the unsuspecting into a twilight realm of discovery and decision. 

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Book Review: Deal Sharing Aunt!

Book Review--Deal Sharing Aunt on The Unholy!
"This book reminded me of the inquisition and all of the religious persecution from the past. The beginning when she saw her mother get attacked felt like it was straight out of a horror movie. The description and how she hugged the tree made me want to go to the forest and help her escape. There was a lot of religion in this book, but not the kind you would expect at church. There was definitely a dark side to the characters. I also liked the natural medicine that was in the book. This book was very involved and I recommend reading it in a quiet place without interruptions. I thought that the ending fit the book well. I am giving this book a 4/5. I was given a copy to review, however all opinions are my own."

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Albuquerque Alibi Book Review!

Recovery in Aztlan


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The Unholy

Paul DeBlassie IIISunstone Books
Paul DeBlassie III’s The Unholy is a frightening thriller that details the struggle between the forces of good and the forces of evil. Set in the mythical land of Aztlan—the legendary ancestral home of the Aztec—DeBlassie’s novel is infused with the scents, sounds, and traditions of the author’s native New Mexico. The vividness of the sensory description adds to the mystery and otherworldliness of the novel’s theme and setting.
At the heart of the novel is Claire, a 25-year-old mental-health healer and natural therapist who lives with the painful childhood memory of her mother’s untimely death. Orphaned very young, Claire is raised by her mother’s close friend, a kind, strong woman and respectedcurandera who often reminds Claire that she is one of the last in a line of revered medicine women known as the Lozen. Though Claire is reluctant to take up the burden of that destiny, it seems that she is unable to escape it, as it becomes clear that the forces of darkness that killed her mother now have Claire in their sights. Her spiritual powers and psychic gifts intensifying and sharpening as she comes of age, Claire finds that she must do battle with the evil organization behind her mother’s death, or risk her own life and the lives of those she loves.
The placid and traditional land of Aztlan, with its deep connection to nature and the nearly forgotten old ways of healing, has long been dominated by the powerful, ambitious, and greedy organization called the Ecclesia Dei—itself a rather thinly veiled caricature of the Catholic Church. Head of this soulless and fanatical group is the aptly named Archbishop Anarch—a man who will stop at nothing to achieve total spiritual and temporal control of the people of Aztlan. A truly evil creature, the Archbishop aims to destroy Claire and the traditions of the curanderas. Will Claire be able to fight the Archbishop and win, or will the struggle cost her her very soul?
The Unholy’s stark and unrelenting opposition of good and evil, though providing fodder for a fast-paced and thrilling storyline, allows little room for the many shades of gray with which most humans are painted. The author’s deep and varied experience in psychology and in working with those who escape religious fanaticism would seem a fascinating background against which to develop a more nuanced, subtle investigation of the ways in which religious zealotry can manipulate the psyche. Nevertheless, The Unholy will delight lovers of suspense and horror, and will likely strike a chord with those who have known an evil archbishop or two.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Quiet Fury Interview!

Quiet Fury Author Interview:
Getting To Know… Paul DeBlassie III

paulWhat is your favorite season?
Spring is my favorite season especially here in Aztlan (New Mexico) as the high-mountain desertteems with budding life and the turquoise skies are crystalline clear.
What was your favorite subject in school?
Psychology, religious studies, and English were favorite subjects of mine, all of them coming together as a thriller writer who explores the dark side of religion as is dramatized in The Unholy.
What is your favorite heartbreak song?
Willie Nelson’s rendition of You Were Always on my Mind is a cautionary tale to me of the need for love and to express it with a full heart and sincerity lest the moment pass and leave us with regret, something best to avoid for the sake of truth to self and a loving relationship.
Do you prefer dogs or cats?
I love both dogs and cats. Algernon Blackwood, one of my favorite Gothic writer, states that they are immensely psychic creatures, tuning into presences from the other world before humans pick up on the cues.
What is your favorite movie?
I have lots of favorite movies, but I was recently impressed by the tragic tale of Philomena in which the protagonist can be seen as having been permanently damaged by the dark side of religion.
What one food will you never eat?
Liver is definitely not a favorite food of mine perhaps because of the fact that the Greeks considered it the seat of the soul and it deserves more honor than to be served up on a common plate.
Are you a morning or night person?
Both the morning and night are inhabited by their particular spirits, morning filled with sprites and angels of light, nighttime bringing with the subtleties of dark ghosts who whisper during liminal states and dreams.

Would you rather spend a weekend in the woods or a weekend in a
 luxury hotel with a spa?
I’d rather spend a weekend hiking through the high-desert mountains here in Aztlan (New Mexico) like Claire does in The Unholy, finding it to be a realm of cleansing and renewal.
file8891250911677Do you prefer country or city?
City and country are necessary balances to the world, yang and yin, that each convey life and restoration in a unique and potentially transformative manner…I love them both.

What is your favorite thing to do on a rainy weekend?
Rainy days are for curling into self and reading good books and spinning tales of intrigue.
Are you a planner or spontaneous?
My nature is hermetic, Hermes filling me with the inspiration of the moment, spontaneous intuition and action!
Favorite breakfast food?
file4341308214618Red chile breakfast burritos served up piping hot in the land of Aztlan is my favorite food to start off on the path of an enlightening day!
What is your biggest pet peeve?
Without a doubt I find that having no pet peeve is not troublesome at all to me since the things that for an instant trouble me quickly pass and end up having been largely illusory.
Who was the last singer or band you last saw perform live?
At over eighty years old B.B. King rocked the house here in an Albuquerque venue, left my mind cleared out and my psyche refreshed.

Suspense or romance?
I’m a thriller writer who digs the suspense world yet also realizes that without romance the best of thrills pales, love is the biggest thrill of all!
What is your favorite dessert?
In Aztlan we have a specialty desert called natillas, a chilled custard with whipped egg white, nutmeg, and cinnamon…a real soul warmer!
Which would you prefer: An evening watching TV or listening to music?
Television is spinning out so many good series like The Following, Hannibal, and True Detective, Game of Thrones that watching the TV can be a true pleasure; so, Kate and I do some TV in the evening after we’ve prepared dinner while listening to some good jazz or alternative rock.
If your personality was a color, what would it be?
I’m a blue guy, the color of the unconscious mind as deep calls unto deep and color vibrates with a soulful resonance.
Do you prefer rain or snow?
Here in Aztlan, the high mountain desert, we are grateful for all form of precipitation of both the snowy and purely liquid variety.
Are you cautious or reckless?
I live in a cautiously inspired manner!