Wednesday, April 13, 2011


My guest today is paranormal romance author, Linda Thomas-Sundstrom. She is the author of Vampire Moons series, and her latest is Golden Vampire.

Linda's a southern California native who teaches at the University of California. Napkins everywhere are now happy Linda writes her stories on the computer. I'm not so sure about her poor car. It's had a lot to worry about with a crazy author manning the wheel. 

While she loves dark historicals and gothics she has been known to write lighthearted stories as well. I'm thinking her muse may be schizophrenic. Or just likes variety. But, her topic today is about her muse and inspiration. Like she says, "What are we without our inspirations?"

Muse. You have got to love when one comes a calling. You know - that ethereal, nebulous, misty presence that’s defined as “an instigator of inspiration,” but is actually, as we all realize, a real species of otherworldy personage. Maybe even with wings...

Yep, I have a Muse (thank heavens! ) Maybe two. I’ve never actually seen her or their faces, in person, but figure that because they work pretty much non-stop at singing to me, one would get tired. So maybe mine has a twin.

My Muse sings at the top of her lungs. I either have to listen, or fear she might be disgusted I’m ignoring her help, and leave. (!!) She rarely takes a vacation, but every now and then has been known to disappear for short stretches at a time. I think she’s resting her voice, and prefer to call her time off as “tune-ups.”

She has a tendency to sing at times when I’m trying to do something else, like driving. Or when I’m working out on my elliptical machine, or out for a walk.. I’m probably really dangerous to drive behind, because I write down ideas that come... by having a notebook handy on the passenger seat. You just never know when that inspiration will show up. My motto is to be prepared!

I am lucky to have such inspiration. I know it, and thank my lucky stars every single day.

Without a Muse, and inspiration, how would we get any writing done? Books done and published? I just find inspiration everywhere. In a particularly interesting word, a stunning visual, or a haunting melody. I have at least a hundred yellow sticky notes on the walls above and beside my desk, with titles, words I like, and beginning sentences of stories I’d eventually like to get to write. So far, in my career as a writer and published author, the well has not run dry, and my Muse keeps hanging in. This makes writing very exciting for me. A thing I love.

Talk about Muse fodder, and paying attention... GOLDEN VAMPIRE has it’s own unique story about getting published that I’ll spill sometime. In the meantime - here, I’ve tweaked the Arthurian tales for this book and its full sequel, due out early in 2012, and brought some of the Round Table’s Knights into the current century.

“GOLDEN VAMPIRE.” is a re-writing of a legend about sone of those Round Table Knights, who were perhaps unearthly beautiful and undefeated I battle because they were unearthly!

For history fans like myself, you might recognize my immortal Knight in Golden Vampire. His name is Lance. And thought this is a contemporary story about the woman who finds him, Lance’s backgound as an immortal plays a major part in who he now is.

So.... let’s chat. I’m here today.

You can probably tell by this post how excited I am to be writing, and publishing the kind of stuff that inspires me. Paranormal all the way! Yay!

My Muse stays because she likes the energy surrounding me, and vice versa. I am truly blessed, and do not take this for granted. After paying my dues in the writing business, I’m finally starting on my second career, and hope that my destiny is to write many many more books!

Chatter points:
  • Do you have a MUSE?
  • Do you have to share her with someone else? Blackmail her to stay?
  • Do you like the Arthurian tales?


For former cop Jesse Stewart, giving herself—mind and body—to sexy vampire Lance Van Baaren meant losing her soul. Hired by the government to find a senator's missing daughter, she instead found a haunting link to her past. And now something is drawing her to the one man she should despise….

Once a knight, Lance had sworn to protect the innocent. And one of those young innocents had been Jesse. Now face-to-face with the alluring woman she has become, he's determined to help Jessie solve her case and make her his own. But would finding the truth of her past—beneath a Blood Moon—push her further away? You can read an excerpt here.

Buy: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Borders, Books a Million Books are available in e-book or paperback format.

I write both dark and light paranormals. Vampire and Werewolf tales with titles like Midnight Court, Barbie and the Beast, Red Wolf, Blackout, Wolf Trap, Vampire Lover, etc. And now, my latest book from Nocturne, just released this month is a vampire series called Vampire Moons... and the first full book is “GOLDEN VAMPIRE.”

You can find Linda: Website, Nocturne Authors,


~Sia McKye~ said...

Welcome to Over Coffee, Linda. Now, I've assured my napkins they are safe from being roughly grabbed and scribbled on. Just sayin' Here's a notepad.

So, how was the RT convention? I wasn't able to go this year.

Jo said...

Wouldn't some sort of recording device be better than jotting things down - especially when driving? I find I need to do similar things about ideas for my blog or they just disappear. Not that I have a muse exactly.

Linda Thomas-Sundstrom said...

Hi Jo - NOPE is the answer. My dear husband bought me a great little tiny hand-held tape recorder... but that's not the way it works for me. I must write things down - hand to paper. And with a recorder, I still have to do that when I get home. My Muse likes to sing, likes me to pay attention, and once I write down what she's singing about, I fell relieved and inspired. SORRY CALIFORNIA DRIVERS, but this is true! ha.

Linda Thomas-Sundstrom said...

Sia - got any breakfast NAPKINS???? (*WINK*) Really, I am polite and won't steal yours... usually.

RT was informative. This one in particular, with all the self-publishing information going on. A rush. I'm still recovering!

Thanks for having me. And by the way, I read that intro..... and "schitzo Muse" might just be right!

Linda Thomas-Sundstrom said...

P.S. Sia - My family is Clan MacQuarrie!


Chris Marie Green said...

Linda! I can't wait to read GOLDEN VAMPIRE. The premise is so exciting.

BTW, I will be watching out for your car on the road. ; )

Linda Thomas-Sundstrom said...

Thanks Chris for stopping by! Won't tell you what KIND of car I drive...

~Sia McKye~ said...

Ah, another fine Celtic lass.

I would have loved to hear what was said about the self-pub. So much chat about it. Still way too many people thinking it's a shortcut, especially unpubbed writers, without taking into consideration the cost (and the need) of a good editor and the time to build a solid readerbase, not to mention promotion. It can be done and I'm not saying it can't, just there's bit more involved.

Established authors will do fine.

And then it makes me curious as to how RWA will handle that.

JeanneD said...

Good morning, Linda! I have a Muse - she's a Barbie Black Basic doll, wearing sun glasses and holding a lap-top computer! She's recently been joined by another Barbie w/long blonde hair and sunglasses. They stand by my computer and chat. Sometimes they whisper to me about characters and plots.
Yes - my teenagers and husband think I'm a bit nuts, but then again...I'm a writer. So my muses do have faces!

Lisa Kessler said...

Hi Linda -

I'm boring because I don't think I have a muse! LOL

I make myself sit down and start writing until characters start coming alive. I do use music though!

Could that be my muse? Maybe my inspiration. The right playlist is very important. It colors the whole modd of whatever I'm writing. It also helps me keep the writing flowing as I go...

Great blog! :) And yes I love Arthurian legends!

Lisa :)

JeanneD said...

I agree with you, Lisa! I have songs that are "about my book". I listen to them until I reach that emotional place and then I write. Do you do that? How about you, LInda?

Linda Thomas-Sundstrom said...

Hey Jeanne - another BARBIE girl - after my heart. I have my original retro Barbie right here on my shelf... hence my book BARBIE AND THE BEAST for Dorchester in 09. ha!

And music can be great inspiration, I agree. Though I need absolute quiet in order to hear my own personal Muse. I don't want to offend her by having my attention slip to a suggestive beat.

Only once did I use music for inspiration, and as a matter of fact, it was for the opening pages of THIS book - GOLDEN VAMPIRE!
The music was from the soundtrack of the A BEAUTIFUL MIND movie.... I heard it in a writing session, and just wrote and wrote... until it became GOLDEN VAMPIRE.

Soooo cool. But only once. Otherwise, the music in in my head, in the manner of flowing, rhythmic sentences.

Thanks for the comment! YOU GUYS ROCK!

Linda Thomas-Sundstrom said...

Sia - yes... all the self-pub info is red hot at the moment. And some authors are doing well. While other authors are wishing they were doing well. HA. It's certainly something to consider. An option with its arms wide open.

My family motto is: AN T'ARM BREAC DEARG. The red tartaned army.


James Rafferty said...

Hi Linda,

I hear you about wanting to get those ideas down on paper, but you should tell the muse to wait a few minutes when you're on the road. My own muse likes to arrive at strange and sometimes awkward times, so I can relate. I've used recorders from time to time, but didn't like having to transcribe later.

Linda Thomas-Sundstrom said...

Hi James. My Muse is forgetful. If I ask her to wait until I can pull over, sometimes (often) she forgets the song she's singing. That's equally as dangerous, right?

I'm thinking of using one of those beaded straps - you know, the kind folks wear around their necks so they never use their eye-glasses - to keep a paper pad and pen handy. But that won't help in the car!

Thanks for the note!
Anyone else tried this?

Helen Ginger said...

If I have a muse, she's very quiet. Probably just as well. I would probably be telling her to shut up and let me think. ;-)

Linda Thomas-Sundstrom said...

Ooohhh, noooooo.... Helen! A Muse is worth her weight in gold. And they are rare. If you hear one, and she's just visiting, duct tape her to a chair while you explain your needs.

~Sia McKye~ said...

lolol! She might take exception to that sort of treatment, doncha think?

No wonder you have two. One has to recover from the indignity of it all while the other works. I see how you are now, lol!

I started your book, btw. I'm liking it!

Linda Thomas-Sundstrom said...

YAY. Thanks, Sia! The last series was WEREWOLVES... Grrrrr.... Love those wolves! "Wolf Moons." Now I'm up to my neck in immortals, and finding them fascinating.

Started writing another book today, for a new series. SIGH. Another hot immortal. What's not to love?


~Sia McKye~ said...

Good for you! You'll have to come back and visit with us with your next release and especially with the new series.

Linda Thomas-Sundstrom said...

Nite all! Thanks for checking in and hanging out with me and my Muse. This is a fun site, Sia is a groovy Scottish lass, and I'd love to return. Truly.

Adios for now-
Please do try my books -
And pass the word along if you like them.

Good karma to you all.

Linda Thomas-Sundstrom said...

From TAMI - who doesn't have an account and sent this to me....

Linda -

This made me laugh. I just need to remember not to follow you anywhere in the car.

Talli Roland said...

That's one hot looking vampire! I'd like a muse along those lines, please...

Linda Thomas-Sundstrom said...

Would you like me to lend you mine? For fifteen minutes? hhehehehe.
who just checked back today to make sure everything is fine!