Here is Day 4 of the 13 days of Halloween with Bewitching Desires A Savannah
Today’s author spotlight is on Danielle Donaldson.
She writes Contemporary Romance, YA and Women’s Lit.
The name of her short story is called “The Banshee and the Barista“.
Jenny was thirteen years old when she accidentally killed her parents. It seems like every time she opens her mouth, people around her start dropping dead. She’s learned to live with her power, keep her mouth shut, and stay away from people. She’s learned the art of healing through touch with the help of her coven. Yet, Mac, the motor-mouth barista from the local coffee shop, wiggles into her life and shows her that her witchcraft is much stronger than she originally thought. Jenny discovers that being a Banshee doesn’t have to be a silent life of sadness.
So Danielle, what is one of your favorite things about Halloween?
I love Halloween because of the whole atmosphere changes in the space of a month. We move from a hot summer into the holiday season. The days get shorter, the nights get cooler and we get to snuggle up with tea in our sweaters. I love pumpkins and the leaves turning into beautiful colors. My young son is in LOVE with everything “spooky” or Halloween. He has carried around a tiny toy skeleton for the last few weeks. So, our family all enjoy things of the morbid nature. Also, since October is my birthday month, I like to celebrate all month long. I basically treat myself all month.
Ha ha. That is how I feel about my birthday month, which is November. What’s your favorite Halloween movie?
I love Hocus Pocus and Beetlejuice as a child. Now, Beetlejuice isn’t necessarily a Halloween centric movie but it’s the right amount of humor and spookiness to get me in the spirit.
Beetlejuice is one of my favorite movies too. Have you written paranormal romance before?
I have never written a paranormal romance before The Banshee and the Barista. Although, I have written a love/erotica poem about a zombie before but I’m not sure if that counts.
It does in my book. So, tell me a little about your heroine.
Jenny is a twenty-something massage therapist who is just starting her journey into discovering what it means to be a witch and a banshee. Her powers are overwhelming to her and she never knows who will drop dead next around her. Because of this fear, she rarely speaks, knowing that the power can be in her voice. When she meets Mac, she discovers that she has even more power than she initially believed.
Wicked cool. Tell me a little about your Hero.
Mac is just your friendly neighborhood Barista. You know the one that always knows your name and your order but makes WAY too much small talk before you’ve been caffeinated? Yeah, that guy. He’s sweet and affable and completely smitten with the mysteriously quiet girl that comes into his coffee shop and always orders a tea. The only problem is, he can’t get seem to get her to say more than two words to him. Mac also loves Halloween. It’s his favorite holiday. So, he’s hoping that he’ll finally be able to ask Jenny out on his favorite day of the year.
Where did you get the idea for your story or what was the inspiration for your story?
A few of my writer friends were tossing around ideas and one of them off-handed mentioned banshees. When I was in school, I was obsessed with the banshee myth. All the myths and goddesses we were taught revolved around love and motherhood.
The banshee was on the other end of the spectrum. She was feared, but only in the same way that Death was feared. She warned those of their impending doom with her screaming and wailing. Obviously, there are variations on the myth but I just loved the idea of women not just being the facilitators of people into this world through birth but also on the way out of the world.
What was the hardest part in writing this short story?
I think it was difficult for me to only write so much of Jenny and Mac’s stories. In my mind, they have rich lives and back stories that I couldn’t include in the story due to word count restrictions. This characters have bigger lives than I was able to share with the readers.
Do you see yourself continuing this character(s) into another project?
I’m not sure at the moment. I love the way that their story was wrapped up for the moment. Yet, they are deep characters still in flux. There are plenty of stories left for them.
Are you working on anything new currently?
I’m working on a contemporary romance novel that’s a gender bent take on a story like the Julia Robert’s movie, Pretty Woman. I’m also prepping a new novel outline for National Novel Writing Month in the month of November.
Ah, NANO. I am trying that again this year. I didn’t do to well last year. (smile) Is there anything you want to say to the reader?
Thank you so much for taking the time to dive into our Savannah Coven world for a while. I hope you enjoy the stories and tell us what you think! Happy Halloween. I hope you have spooky month!
Here’s an excerpt from “The Banshee and the Barista”
Mac started to speak, “What’s going–” She placed her left pointer finger over his lips without opening her eyes. His lips were so soft and they felt magenta and hot, and she wanted to rub her fingertip over them, but she tried her best to keep her hand still.
He leaned in to her touch even though his breath hitched in his throat.
She reveled in the feeling that emanated from his heart for a moment. It was like caramel on her tongue, the smell of seawater on a summer breeze through her hair, the soft purr of a kitten in her lap.
His eyes went wide and his mouth fell open. She searched his face and her body responded in a way that she had never experienced. There was a hot rush between her legs and her stomach flipped.
“What are you doing?” Mac whispered and his eyes never left hers. His deep brown eyes were tender and they crinkled at the edges as he smirked.
She pushed the energy back into him, showing him what she felt. It was all new to her. She was used to pushing healing or calming thoughts into people, trying to push the visions of death away from her but this was different. This held up a mirror to him and reflected what she experienced by touching him.
She pushed the feeling through her palm and his skin grew hot under her touch. His energy was hot cocoa next to a fire in wintertime, the smooth first taste of pumpkin pie, a bubble bath warm around her legs. For a moment, his eyes widened and he looked far away, but then his eyes closed and his head rocked backward on his neck, a soft smile on his lips. His neck was open to her and she wanted to put her lips on the arch of his muscles and kiss and suck and nibble…
She thought she might have been pushing too many of those feelings into him, because he jumped upright, holding her palm to his chest. His dark, hungry eyes met hers. She was ravenous for him.
She stepped away and pulled her hand back. You’re a professional. She’d worked hard enough to make sure that she kept her professionalism in a field where she pretty regularly got asked if she was a “happy ending” kind of massage therapist.
Mac cleared his throat and looked away, he moved the sheet over his lower body, to hide the outline of a large erection. It wasn’t uncommon for men to get erections during massages, but usually she ignored it. This was clearly different. This was because of the connection between them, the feeling he showed her.
“Uh…I’m sorry. I’m so sorry.” He cleared his throat. “Uh… this doesn’t happen. I should go. I definitely should go.”
Danielle Donaldson writes from Southern California where she lives with her husband and son. She is busy writing YA and Contemporary Romance novels as well as poetry and short stories. Her novels are stories of hope. The smallest candle is still fighting the shadows. Every person has their struggles, their darkness, but the cycle of life continues and the light might be around the next bend.
Catch her online on WriterDanielleDonaldson.com