Sheri Lewis Wohl

Vampires and Werewolves and Ghosts, Oh My!

Kicking in Gear

The summer has gotten away from me in a blaze of speed and flurry of crisis, work, and yes, even a fair amount of fun. I don’t know where it went nor did I realize how long  I’ve ignored this blog. My bad…

Fall is on the way and my favorite holiday creeping up. Oh yeah, you know where I’m going with this…Halloween! Usually my plan includes the Monster Dash a 5k run complete with costumes. Stepping it up this year and going for a half marathon called The Trail of Terror. Seriously, don’t you think it has my name written all over it? I did and signed right up. The deal sealer though wasn’t just the name it was that the aid stations will be manned by vampires, werewolves, zombies and the like. Got chills just thinking about it 🙂

In the meantime, however, it’s time to kick it in gear and get back to the business of the preternaturals. A vampire book to complete editing and finish up the first book in a new series featuring a reluctant psychic. Good times. Good times.

Adios summer. Buna zuia season of ghosts, witches, and all things that go bump in the night.

The Watcher

In my book, Souls of Sorrow, the Watcher is a key character. I’ve been fascinated by the Watchers since I discovered them in the Bible’s Book of Enoch. Angels sent to earth to watch over humans, they ultimately fail in their mission and become the fallen ones. For their sins they are “kept in everlasting chains under darkness” until Judgement Day. When I found the Watchers, I knew these were bound to turn up in at least one book. Seriously, angels in darkness? Had my name written all over it. And so the Watcher came to be.

I thought when the Watcher became a part of Souls of Sorrow that he was a minor character. I was wrong. In fact I was very surprised when I had readers tell me how much they liked the him. If it had only been one reader, I’d have been flattered. Except it wasn’t just one, it was so many more. It’s times like this that make a writer happy. Something that had captured my imagination did the same for others. It’s a wonderful thing.

Recently I signed a contract for a three-book series called the Reluctant Psychic. After hearing of the upcoming series, a friend and reader asked me if by any chance the Watcher was going to be in these books? It made me smile…and think.

“You know,” I told her. “I think he just might.”

In the strangest places

I will freely admit that I have an odd way of looking at things. Maybe it’s because I like my stories just a step off and thus all the vampires, werewolves, witches, and ghosts that show in my stories even when I’m trying NOT to write them! But I think it hit an all time high last week. Here’s what happened. I had a membrane attaching itself to one of my retinas and affecting my vision. I underwent eye surgery to repair before it caused serious damage to my retina. Of course, I was given some mighty powerful drugs since they were working on my eyeball. Then in the operating room, they cover my entire face with a protective sheet. If not for the drugs, I’d have probably had a panic attack.

As it turns out, not even a twinge of panic. In fact quite the opposite. With the one unaffected eye, the lights of the operating room came through the shield with an eerie glow that got my mind whirling with stories. If I was tense before, I calmed immediately and my brain, drugged as it was, began spinning tales. The doctor began to work on my affected eye. Sounds creepy and if I think about it too much…ewwwww. But strangely enough, I could see him work although it was only shapes and movement. It was quite frankly fascinating and only added to the wave of imagination happening. It seems the mind of a story-teller never rests even in an operating room. Goes to prove that stories can be hatched in the strangest places. Or at least in my head anyway! 🙂

And in case you’re interested…check out USAToday Happy Ever After blog…Scarlet Revenge is one of the featured books. Yahoo!!

We’re all Irish for a day

I’ve always loved vampires…books, movies, TV shows (who didn’t watch the original Dark Shadows!) but it was an Irish writer who took my love of the undead to a new level. Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu’s short story “Carmilla” opened up a new world that ushered in a change in my life. When my mentor professor suggested I read the story as I was trying to narrow down the subject of my Master’s thesis, I thought it was just another vampire story. How wrong I was. Not only was it written 25 years before Dracula but the feature of the story was a female vampire. It was even more interesting because “Carmilla” wasn’t just a woman, she was a lesbian. Considering the story was written in 1872, it was fascinating for a whole bunch of reasons. I was off and rolling on researching my thesis. My focus was set.

It worked out great too. Not only did I thoroughly enjoy the research and the writing of the thesis but once finished, approved, and submitted, it was subsequently nominated for outstanding thesis of the year. A thesis on a vampire story. A thesis on a lesbian vampire story. The stuff of dreams for any paranormal buff.

It continued to work it’s magic. Some years later I wrote a novel featuring a lesbian vampire as the hero of the story. It was a joy to write. Incredibly freeing and personally gratifying. At first no one was interested. Sure, they all liked the storyline and liked my writing style, but…there was always a but. Until I met Radclyffe at Bold Strokes Books. I figured it would be a bust there too because of the parallel straight love story in the novel and I was wrong. Crimson Vengeance my tribute to my Master’s Thesis and Le Fanu’s progressive vampire story came out in 2011. I found a home with Bold Strokes Books and have never looked back.

All it took was one little Irish vampire story written 130+ years ago to set me on a vampire path that makes me smile every single day. Yeah, it’s good to be Irish even if it’s just for a day.


I’ve always had an active imagination. In fact, some might even argue…over-active imagination. Where others see romantic moonlight, I see werewolves. Where others see glowing mist, I see vampires. It’s just the way I roll. Always was. Always will be.

SRiverCase in point…if you weren’t already aware, I do triathlons and distance running (although distance trotting might be a more accurate description of my running style) and this past weekend I participated in the Snake River Canyon Half Marathon. It is an out and back course along the river that cuts through the Snake River Canyon. Beautiful, beautiful area. But, because I am less than speedy, there were sections on the return portion where I found myself by myself. Okay with me, I like solitude and enjoying the beauty of my surroundings. EXCEPT…all of a sudden I noticed odd sounds coming from the canyon walls. Odd hissing sounds…in SNAKE River Canyon. All I could envision were coils of snakes on the rocks their glinty little eyes staring at lonesome me trotting along the road. Not just oh no, more like OH HELL NO!

Not surprisingly, my pace picked up until finally I couldn’t stand it anymore. I stopped dead in the road, closed my eyes and really listened. Then I laughed at myself. No hoards of snakes waiting to slither down and give me the big one. Nope, it was run off that because of the landscape simply sounded more like a snake than running water. Or perhaps to everyone else in the run it sounded like running water and to the lone paranormal writer trotting along by herself, imagination got the best of her. I’m not saying that’s what happened but then again it wouldn’t be the first time I saw or heard something far different from those around me.

Oh yes, imagination is a wonderful thing.

If I was a hunter

I watched Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter last night. Didn’t really think I’d like it but I did! Surprisingly I liked it a lot. It made me think what it would be like if I lived my normal life and yet found myself in Abe’s shoes. If I was a vampire hunter:

**I would move with the speed and grace of a ninja.

**I would have cool weapons I actually knew how to use.

**I would be able to sense evil when it approaches.

**I would keep the world safe without anyone ever knowing.

**I would be one with the night…in a good way!

Yeah, if I was a vampire hunter, I would be so much cooler than the real me! Ha! As it is, I will have to be content with the less-cool me and be content to let my imagination soar in my stories. And you know what? That’s okay because inside my head, an awesome vampire hunter lives to fight another day…or rather night.

Full Moon on the Rise

009I can’t help it, everytime I see a full moon, I smile! Then I look around and try to see if I can spot a werewolf. Oh yeah, it’s true. Just like when I was a kid and was certain vampires were in the shadows. Full moons always make think of werewolves and then I have to look.

* Like in the meadow a few miles from my home. A full moon lights up that meadow, bathing it in warm light. I’m sure one day I’ll see a werewolf racing through the tall grass though so far…all I’ve spotted are deer and turkeys!

* Like on the ridge above the river. Moonlight showers down on the ridge and I search knowing that if I look long enough, a werewolf will stand tall against the night sky. So far, all I’ve seen is well–nothing. Not even a turkey.

* Like at the river’s edge. Surely a werewolf will follow the moon’s light to the river’s edge where it can drink before racing away again. So far, all I’ve see are deer, moose, and procupines.

Where oh where are the werewolves? Far from the city’s lights where trees are everywhere, the river runs wide and clear, and the hunting is good, the moon showers down and calls to the werewolves. I’ve looked and looked. Have I caught even a clue. Nope.

Nothing. Anywhere. Ever. But…I’m not giving up. After all, a full moon is on the rise!

The Eye of the Beholder

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder is a phrase we’ve heard forever. The truth of it can’t be denied. Beauty really is different for each of us and that’s part of what makes the world so wonderful. The same is true of imagination. What seems normal and run of the mill to most people is something completely different for me. Case in point, fog. Not long ago, standing in my office many floors above the street, I gaze out the window and watch as the weather changes. Suddenly, my imagination takes flight! To everyone around me it simply looks as though a fog bank is rolling in. Not to me. My mind goes somewhere else entirely. I’m thinking…what if it’s not fog? What if vampires are invading my city. I race back to my desk, grab my camera and snap a picture out the window. To capture the world that sent my imagination spinning.

The eye of the beholder. You might see fog…or maybe you see vampires too…

Skin Walker in the morning

I would venture to say that every writer is routinely asked, “where do you get your ideas?” Hard question to answer because for me they come from EVERYWHERE! Take this morning for example. Sunday mornings @ 6:30 is run time for a group from my triathlon club. It’s a great group and we have an awesome time. This morning it was colder than a witch’s…well, you know where I’m going with this…and to top off the cold, I’d left my mp3 player in my office. Cold run, no tunes, what to do? Plot my short story for an upcoming anthology that’s what!! For the better part of five miles it was a fantasyland of shapeshifters and witches (the good guys) and the ever frightening skin walker (the bad guy). It’s amazing how fast five miles can go when you’re deep inside your head. My story plot was complete by the time I made it back to Starbucks. I may just have to forget my tunes more often.

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