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Seriously Dark And Disturbed
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  Journey through the dark side

Title: Seriously Dark and Disturbed

Author: Nora Weston

Publisher: Virtualbookworm.com Publishing; (January 2003)

Genre: Horror

ISBN: 1589393341

Paperback: 140pp



Rating: Recommended

April 22, 2004

This book is a series of short stories and poems that reads like a peep show into the dark side where there is a never-ending struggle to battle against evil. This author uses fantasies, science fiction, dimensional portals and time warps as a means to portray how desires and greed's can put a soul in mortal danger. Also, if an individual is not careful about how he or she interacts with others, his or her soul may be forsaken and become lost in the world of the damned.

These short stories and poems depict murder, deceit, greed, lust, jealousy, adultery, fame, fortune, loss, and survival through intense morality struggles. Seriously Dark and Disturbed contains poems that plunge the reader into self-insight distinguishing darkness and light with vivid descriptions. Ending with flash fiction that delves into death, despair, hope, and narrow escapes.

This author's horror trip is a great journey into the unknown.

Reviewed by Juanita Reynolds


An Interview with Nora Weston




To start this off, why don't you give an idea of what the book is about?


Seriously Dark And Disturbed by Nora Weston


Tales from the dark nightscape of Nora Weston are delivered to you with stories and poetry that are tainted with a spicy dash of horror, science fiction, or fantasy.


For example, "Drakken: Dark Knight of Death Realm," will propel you to the lost lands of Argoannia where chaos and sin run amuck. Touched by a Devil, is a juicy story that oozes with sensual heat as Billy Emerson is confronted by a succulent demon from within his dreams.


Seriously Dark And Disturbed dangles between reality and nightmares. The disturbing stories and poetry invite the reader to decide if he/she walks in the light or dances in the dark.



Where did you grow up and was reading and writing a part of your life?


I grew up in Wheeling, West Virginia. I've always enjoyed literature, but I really started to enjoy it more when I could pick out my own books to read. By the time I was a young teen, I had more freedom in regards to the subject matter I preferred and that was mostly speculative fiction. However, I have a great interest in history, especially when it concerns people whove changed the face of the world. I started writing when I was a teenager. Recently, I found some of my older poems and stories. That experience was quite a rush.



Who were your earliest influences and why?


My earliest influences were Mary Shelley, Edgar Allen Poe, and Alexander Dumas. Mary Shelleys Frankenstein captivated me because I knew that book housed deeper feelings than it appeared to. Mary lived from 1797 to 1851. She was nineteen years old when she wrote Frankenstein. The world Shelley lived in was complicated and it's obvious she was filled with many provocative questions about life and death. Edgar Allen Poe (1809-1849) caught my attention when I was twelve years old. Orphaned early on in life, Poe seemed to have sorrow as a constant companion. His writings depict much of the anguish that haunted him. The plots of Poes writings are outstanding and his collections and essays have stood the test of time. He fascinates me. Alexandre Dumas (1802-1870) was a French novelist and dramatist. He lived life to the fullest, became quite wealthy, but usually spent more than he made.  The Count of Monte Cristo is my favorite book by Dumas. Later in life, I began to enjoy such authors as Stephen King, Dean Koontz, and Leo Tolstoy.



What would a typical day be like for a writer?


Most professional writers would be forced to produce articles by topics and deadlines preset for them. Although, in their spare time, if they write fiction, poetry, nonfiction, or creative nonfiction, then I feel that is when most writers share typical tendencies.


A typical day for a writer might then include, staring at the keyboard hopeful for inspiration to bite hard, research and more research, observations of people and things, note-taking while driving, cooking, walking, talkingand even note-taking while sleeping. Well, that is when writers do get the chance to sleep. Writers must also spend considerable time editing and thats harder than writing the short story or novel.



How long have you been writing and in what capacities?


Ive been writing since I was a teenager. I hardly remember that phase of my life, but Im told by competent sources that I did, indeed, live that long ago. Ive published short stories, poetry, novels, and articles on parenting. My work will appear in two anthologies in 2004, which are Mind Mutations and In Our own Words: A Generation Defining Itself.  Ive also been doing some editing work for other authors.



Which is more difficult to write - Fiction or nonfiction and why?


This would vary from author to author, but in my opinion nonfiction is easier to write than fiction. Whenever I write nonfiction, I have many resources from which to acquire data. Libraries, the Internet, interviewing specialists, eyewitnesses to a newsworthy event, and television all offer content needed to write non-fiction. Fiction, on the other hand, comes from a spark of creativity that is then molded into a truth that seems real. Sometimes, fiction requires research too. For example, Drakken: Dark Knight of Death Realm is a medieval story placed in England. I had to research the geography of southern England and make sure that my story was accurate in the depictions of the surrounding lands of Argoannia. This story actually starts with the Battle of Eddington, which is a true part of history.




Has there ever been a time when you wanted to throw in the towel and give up? And if so, how did you defeat those instincts?


No, Ive never had the desire to give up on my writing. Im a fairly stubborn person, so I forge onward even during the darkest of days. Actually, when things arent going so wellthats when my imagination takes off. I use my down times to write like crazy and suggest that all writers try to pen something when they feel discouraged. Some of my best stories and poems have come from refusing to throw in the towel. Instead, I wring that towel out and soak up something good from the remains of frustration. However, while wringing that towel out, its a good idea to have some chocolate on hand. Chocolate can make any bad daygood.



What is the hardest part about being a writer?


The hardest part about being a writer is finding the time to do it. My husband and I have six kids, (maybe thats why I feel the need to leave the real world) so, I do actually see many towels that need to be thrown somewhere. Life is usually crazy around here and my children do inspire much of what I write.



Do you have any hobbies? What are they? How do they enhance your writing?


Sleeping is a good hobby to have and its my favorite one. Every once and a while, I sleep for more than two hours at a time. Although, never fearsleep deprivation makes for very strange dreams, which I use for story ideas. Im a freelance artist, so I enjoy that as a hobby and I listen to tons of different kinds of music. All of my creative outlets collide from time to time. The music I listen to can inspire me to paint something and then that painting can sometimes to lead to a short story or poem.



Articles and media alike make it sound as though the only way to rise to the top is to sacrifice. What do you find to be good sacrifices?


If a person is driven, in a positive way, to pursue their passions, then nothing is really sacrificed if that person stays organized and focused. I plan specific time to write.


I also plan out how to take care of my family and still have time for myself. Is it easy? No! Life is hard, at times, but Im trying not to sacrifice anything; life is just too short for that. Well, wait a minute; if you ask my kidstheyd say I sacrifice washing those stupid towels.



What question do you get asked more than any other?


Nora, why do you write such strange things?



Whats the coolest thing a reader has said to you?


The coolest thing ever said to me was, I read your book and then had a weird dream. You came to me and wanted to take me into your world. I wasnt sure where in the hell your world was, but I was going to go.



What has been your feedback from readers? What do they say to you about their interpretations of your book?


Readers seem to get the gist of my writing. Most people understand that its meant to entertain, but it also asks subtle, and not so subtle, questions about the meaning of life and death; these questions simmer within the plots.


From the Booklore review, Chrissi states, Nora writes using a great deal of description and expression, giving rise to very vivid imagery. The world of Nora Weston is a strange mishmash of alternate times and cultures, from a succubus to a man being revived with defibrillation she certainly wanders a wide range of images, drawing from modern horror to the rather more way out gothic, the stories more than living up to the title of seriously dark and disturbed.


Peggy Jo Shumate reviewed Seriously Dark And Disturbed and stated, This fiendish authoress, Nora Weston, will enlighten you on the blackest of nights where silence looms over you and her ethereal words will caress you with each tease of the candlelight. She'll envelope you into her world. The full review is posted at amazon.com.


Anna Kobulnicky stated, Very clever perspective of good vs. evil in the everyday. The full review is posted at amazon.com.




Do you think that as a writer you are more prone to watching what goes on around you and observing behaviors than most people are?


Yes, I do believe that writers have to be keenly aware of the behaviors of other people. Good character development comes from understanding what makes your character tick, which leads into a process of setting that character apart from others. And its not just the obvious things that a writer should notice. A writer must look for deeper meanings behind the observable actions of people. What makes a person desperate enough to leap head first into a reality that could get them killed? Why do some people, no matter whatalways decide to do the right thing?




Who are some of the authors you consider to be "don't miss"?


Leo Tolstoy, Virginia Woolf, Stephen King, Dean Koontz, John Steinbeck, Grahm Greene



If one were looking to start his/her own career as a writer, what would you suggest his/her first step to be?


Read everything you can get your hands on. Study plot and character development from the masters. However, once you begin to write, let your own style flow. Thats what will make you unique. 



What kind of movies do you enjoy?


I enjoy horror, drama, and comedies. I like to watch historical fiction and nonfiction too. Some of my favorite movies are What Lies Beneath,  Frailty,  The Shining, Better Off Dead, Saving Silverman, Gladiator, The Hours, and Pride and Prejudice.



What is your favorite city to visit, but one that you wouldnt want to live in?


New York is a fantastic city that Ive visited, but I could not live there. I love everything it has to offer, but I like to get around on my own and I could not drive there without losing the little bit of sanity that I have left.



Whats the strangest question youve ever been asked in an interview?


Which one of your characters would you really bring to life, if you could? Keep in mind that this is a strange question for me, since most of my characters are dead, going to be killed, or are walking a fine line between reality and fantasy. My characters are scary peopleI think Ill keep them held prisoner in my books.



Whats the best part of being a writer?


The best part about being a writer is to have complete freedom from everyone and everything in this world and out of this world. I can make a world of my own and write my own rules.



What's next?


The future is busy. I suppose I should wash some towelsand then finish editing a science fiction/adventure novel that is a tale of epic proportions, which illustrates the power of the human spirit and what one man will do to save a life. This year will include promoting my newly released novel, @hell, completing my website, and of course, writing new stories and poetry. I have two other novels started, so they will need some attention too. I look forward to editing more work from other authors and I have some freelance artwork to complete. All that being said, I suppose I should just clone myself and get it over with.


Betsie's Literary Page thanks Ms. Weston for taking the time to interview with us and we wish her great success.