I intended to share the genesis of my first novella, The Sheikh’s Spy, but reconsidered. Since we are in the glorious season of autumn, I decided to honor this time of year and write the story behind my new novella, Autumn Masquerade.
Many of us are in tune with the changing seasons. Do you get the urge as spring approaches to clear out your closets and garage, and wash your windows? I do.
In the same vein, as the heat of summer fades and darkness falls earlier, I get excited about the approach of my favorite season, autumn.
I had it in mind to write a Halloween novella this year, but when August gave way to September and I started writing, I knew it had to be about more than Halloween. I thought about the blazing glory of earth’s autumn jewels in ruby, carnelian and citrine; about the farmers preparing for their harvest, and about all that we have to be thankful for in a world gone crazy. Autumn is the season of gratitude, of giving back and connecting with the inner self. It’s also about enjoying Mother Earth’s bounty of pumpkins, sweet potatoes, and cranberries. My gratitude is never far from the kitchen, especially the oven.
My new story would be a tribute to the season of autumn, its vibrant colors captured on the cover.
An opulent masquerade ball felt richer than a Halloween party. It needed an elegant setting with fine costumes and a sense of abundance similar to the theme of the harvest and a cornucopia of plenty.
Then there’s the deeper meaning of Halloween and Samhain. The ancients knew the night between October 31 and November 1 was when the veil between the worlds was at its thinnest. Communication between living and dead is easiest when the veil is thin. Seers and psychics ferried messages of comfort and strength back and forth. It was also the end of their year, and beginning of the new one.
The most important seasonal element is gratitude. There are many ways to demonstrate gratitude. We are thankful when someone holds a door open for us, or gives us a birthday gift. In Autumn Masquerade, the gratitude is about acceptance, help with deeply rooted problems like guilt, and burdens carried for a lifetime.
Anna Spencer has a successful corporate career. She also has a secret – she’s a gifted psychic who has visions and speaks with our dearly departed. As a child, her mother instilled in her the need to hide her gifts. Anna came to associate them with rejection and loss of love. Now she’s all grown up. When she’s called upon to be a psychic for a night at an important associate’s masquerade ball, terror grips her. She’s been falling in love with her boss, handsome widower Richard Bentley. His deceased wife sees Anna as the perfect opportunity to get a message to her husband. If he discovers Anna’s secret, will he reject her? There’s only one hope for anonymity – Anna must pull off the ultimate disguise, including color contact lenses and a contrived accent. Enter Belle Helene… what can possibly go wrong?
My greatest gratitude is for family and friends who accept me for who I truly am, and for groups like Exquisite Quills, where I’ve met wonderful new friends who share my passion for writing and a genuine desire to help one another get ahead.
What’s your greatest gratitude?
Thanks for stopping by and reading my post. Enjoy the bounty of the season!
GEMMA JULIANA is a multi-published author who lives in an enchanted cottage in north Texas with her handsome hero, teen son and a comical dog. She loves making new friends and hearing from readers. Exotic coffee and chocolate fuel her creativity.
Buy Gemma’s books on Amazon. When not writing, Gemma loves making jewelry, collecting earth gems and traveling.
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