Haunted Blog Hop

2014 Nancy Gideon's Haunted Open House Hop Graphic

Welcome – From October 27th to October 31st, I’ll be participating in Nancy Gideon’s Haunted Open House Giveaway Blog Hop as part of Nancy’s 4th Annual Haunted Open House! Stop by Nancy’s Haunted Open House to read Halloween posts by some awesome authors, wander into the spooky Game Room or sample some of the spooktacular Halloween drinks, appetizers and desserts. And don’t forget to check out Nancy’s Tricks-or-Treats!

Halloween is a time when you can dress up and pretend you’re someone else. Most young girls want to be a princess or a movie star. I always wanted to be Zorro or the Lone Ranger. Yep, I was a tomboy, through and through.

Up until I was twelve, we lived in the country where houses were far apart and our house was set way back from the road. There weren’t many kids in the area, and it was a rarity if more than a dozen trick-or-treaters came to our door. Then we moved into the city, and on Halloween night our doorbell rang…and…rang…and rang. I think close to a hundred costumed goblins appeared one year.

As a teenager I soon considered myself too “old” for those childish activities, and even when I had my own children, Halloween wasn’t a big deal. I wasn’t one of those mothers who designed and sewed wonderful costumes or invited all of the neighborhood children over. Once again I was living in the country, and if a child wanted to go trick-or-treating, the parents had to drive from house to house, some stops miles apart. I was delighted when our local school district started putting on a party on Halloween night. I was more than happy to help out, and my two always had a wonderful time.

Now, knowing that Halloween has never been an important holiday in my life, I’m sure you’re wondering why I decide to use a Halloween haunted house as the focus of a romantic suspense?


Basically the reason was because I’d recently met a man who used to (maybe still does) create special effects for Hollywood movies. I wanted to use someone like him (He was VERY good looking) as my “hero.” And, since it was October when I started thinking about this story, and there were ads for haunted houses in the papers and on TV, that seemed like a perfect fit for a special effects expert. Picking the location for the story was easy. My former college roommate has a house (it was her mother’s back then) in Downieville, California, and I loved visiting her there. (The Sierra Nevada and gold country have always fascinated me.) Once I had a reason for my female protagonist to need a special effects expert, and a reason why asking for his help would create an emotional conflict (Do you really want to ask someone who’s been accused of murdering his wife for help?), HAUNTED took shape. (Actually, it was titled Dark Temptation when originally published by Loveswept.)

I loved revisiting the story (and bringing it up-to-date) when I prepared it for release as an e-book. Do take a look at the preview available on Amazon.com, Smashwords.com, or BarnesnNoble.com and see if Jason McLain and Valerie Wiggins story might interest you. Leave a comment and enter the Rafflecopter giveaway. If your name is drawn, my contribution is a five dollar ($5) gift certificate from Amazon.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Please visit others on this Halloween Blog Hop. They all have interesting stories to tell.

Tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

30 Responses to Haunted Blog Hop

  1. I love Halloween! Mostly because it’s also annual gorge yourself on your kids’ hard-earned candy night, all in the name of “safety checking,” of course. 😉

    • Maris Soule says:

      Kristen, I like the way you think. I will definitely be checking to make sure the candy I give away is safe…if there’s any left after I finish checking.

  2. Nancy Gideon says:

    Thanks for participating in the Hop, Maris! I wish I had the resources to do it up like the one in Haunted! Especially w the sexy hero!

  3. Anne says:

    Halloween’s a fun, non-stressful holiday.

  4. I dressed up and went trick-or-treating until I was in my teens. After I got married, I gave out the candy while my boys trick or treated. Once they were grown and out of the nest–don’t laugh now–I dressed my dog in costume for Halloween. I have photos. The first time, he looked embarrassed at first, until the trick or treaters came to the door and made a fuss over how cute he looked. Then he preened. Still does. 🙂

    • Maris Soule says:

      I’ve mostly had large dogs. They tended to scare any trick-or-treaters brave enough to come up to the house, so I never bothered with a costume. Bet your dog looked cute.

  5. Trix says:

    It can wear on me if I’m not in the mood, but the costumes are always fun!

  6. Lucy Kubash says:

    I like to decorate for Halloween but not to the extreme, I just have the same little things I bring out every year. We also lived in the country, and I had to take my kids into town for trick or treating. They loved it and especially liked to hide their candy from me. Now I live in a neighborhood, but only get maybe 40 kids a year tops. It’s fun to see their costumes and I don’t mind handing out candy, something I never had to do before.

    • Maris Soule says:

      Lucy, it’s been so long since I’ve had a trick-or-treater ring the bell on Halloween, I’m not sure what I would do. They might have to fight me for the candy. 🙂 Just kidding.

  7. Melissa Keir says:

    Halloween was fun because my parents would take me over to a neighborhood to do our trick or treating, like my grandmother’s. It was safe and busy. I wanted that for my children too and was lucky enough to get that when we moved to Michigan.

    Scary stories are wonderful and I love haunted houses. My parents bought a 100 year old house the year I was a senior in HS. It had character even though I never met a ghost!

    • Maris Soule says:

      Melissa, when my husband and I lived in Santa Barbara, we rented an old house with lots of character…but I don’t think it came with a ghost. I loved the house, but I’m perfectly happy not to have run into (or seen) any ghosts.

  8. bn100 says:

    the costumes are fun

  9. JeanMP says:

    I enjoy seeing all the kids in their costumes, we live in a neighborhood where there aren’t a lot of trick or treaters, so Halloween is pretty quiet for us now.

  10. Mary Roya says:

    I really enjoy Halloween. The costumes, the noise, candy and just plain fun.

    I like that it is for both adults and children.

    • Maris Soule says:

      Mary, I used to love to see the little children in their costumes. This year they’re predicting snow. I remember the years before I took my children to a Halloween party when their costumes were covered with heavy coats. They were always so disappointed.

  11. I’ve never been much of a celebrator when it came to Halloween. I remember a few things when I was really young, but as I got older, I never participated in it. Now, hubs and I just go out to dinner and stay away from the house. We don’t encourage trick or treaters because it’s a long walk up our driveway in the dark. Great story though!

  12. JanD says:

    I live in a country-like area so trick-or-treaters are scarce. It’s a fun time if you go to parties but I like the candy sales more.

  13. Theresa Fischer says:

    I don’t like scary holidays! LOL

    • Maris Soule says:

      Around here, Theresa, Halloween isn’t very scary, so I’m all right with it. But I’m like you, I don’t like scary things: books, movies, or anything.

  14. Janie McGaugh says:

    It’s a fun celebration, and I enjoy the cute little kids in costume.