Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The Cameron Chronicles

********Today is 1/4/11 and this is a redo of a previous post I did at the end of December, 2010. I had written a totally different Chapter One but after I did it...I hated it. LOL! I realized that it needed to be a prologue and it needed to be...well...not what it was. I'd taken what was more of a back of a book jacket and made it into a long chapter and it, me at least. SO...this is a redo of that blog entry. If you read the original...scroll down until you see the first picture...the stuff after it is all different. I left the pre-amble of the blog alone. If you didn't read it...well, I left it below.********

Over the Christmas holiday I had an interesting conversation with my best friend, Angie. SHe has a friend who is a published author (with many books under her belt) who is friends with Anne Rice. She had been telling this friend, we'll call her Alice (so as to stick with names that start with "A" cause its fun), that she'd read my 700 page book over her vacation and Alice asked if I was published and when Angie said no...she had some advice.

Alice told Angie that a writer who's never been published would be smart to try and sell a shorter book---no more than 350 pages (double spaced/12pt font) first. Anything over that would overwhelm an agent or publisher into not giving them the time. I can understand this. Mind you, there are exceptions...I hate to mention Twilight but it is an to put TONS of stock in this advice from Alice need not be manic...but it would be wise for me to consider, for sure.

As I spoke with Angie she agreed that the last 200 pages, though good, did have her feeling like the book was long. Then again...I have a friend who read those 700 pages in three days and it didn't feel long to her at all. Then again, Angie isn't a big reader of Fantasy that I know of and Niki the "it feels long" comment coming from someone who rarely reads anything that long makes sense. know me...I like a challenge.

As we spoke I thought about something my editor of LDG had told me once when I spoke of spin off novels I had left openings for. She'd mentioned a series of books about how Sean Cameron, my "legendary" vampire hunter in the LDG Saga, became a legend. I had said it was a brilliant idea and that I'd call it The Cameron Chronicles.

So as I spoke with Angie I mentioned this. I figured I could write a 350 page novel easy enough...hell, it'd take half the time my normal novels do. If I would cut my chapters down to 10-12 pages I'd still have about a 30 chapter book....OR....I could concentrate on writing a 50,000 word novel (like with NaNoWriMo) but since my stories tend to be more complex than a 50,000 word novel can hold I decided I could write THREE of them that connect. Hence its still my normal 150,000 word novel but it would be in three parts...hence Chronicles not a single chronicle.

Three books at 50,000 words. Ten pages for me usually holds around 3000 to 3200 words. If I went with this format each book would be about 15 chapters. After 3 books it'd total 45 chapters.


I got off the phone with her and went to my computer...driven by a challenge...and began. I only got a 1/2 page done before I was tired and needed to head to bed but since then I've written the first chapter. I'll put it below...I'd love to hear your thoughts.

Remember...this story would be a prequel to the LDG Saga. It would begin in 1987, when Sean is 20 years old. Ten years before he'd meet Atlanta. Five years before he'd be captured and "turned" by Valencia. The Prologue though is him giving a brief overview of how he became Sean Cameron; from age 16 to 20.

**Note: I didn't write the story as being from 16 to 20 because that would make it a YA book, and as much as I like YA, I would prefer that all my books stay in the adult range so they can all be sold in order, together. I know that sounds crazy--and I might change my mind as I write this and go back and write those years out--but for starts at the age of 20...

********Also...a positive note: Alice did say it was impressive not only that I was able to write such a long novel, but that I'd written four of them. So...let's keep that positive thought shall we?********

Onward and forward, yes?

I would say THIS is what Sean might have looked like before he cut off his hair and facial hair...

THIS would be the back of the book, maybe? You know, the back of the dust jacket...


It has become the obsession of my life.

More specifically, those who need it to survive.

I still sometimes shudder to think these creatures are real. If I’d not seen them kill with my own eyes—if I didn’t still see that night in my head every time I closed my eyes with utmost clarity I’d think I had dreamt it. But I didn’t have that luxury. Those I love are dead and gone and these creatures—these vampires—are real.

As I lay in the hospital not speaking to a soul about the truth of what I’d seen I begin to contemplate my options. I had exactly three; A. Repress and forget this ever happened—but that would mean forgetting those who had died…and that, I didn’t want to do—couldn’t do. B. Go mad. At the age of sixteen I didn’t think that held a promising future. C. Take my fear, my anger, and channel it into power—power and knowledge so as to take my revenge.

Option C.

I trained for four years, saving money, learning all I could—and then I left. What I didn’t realize was that shortly after I would set out on my quest that another fighter would join me—-changing my life. She would also be a royal member of the vampire world, called the Clandestine World--and it holds more than just vampires.

I have so much to learn.

THIS would be the first chapter....enjoy.


I was on the other side of the lake when I heard the call for help. It was if it had carried to me on the wind—the sound of my mother’s voice saying my name, “Sean”, as if a plea. I suppose most people would’ve thought they were hearing things but the eerie piercing darkness of the forest that surrounded me seemed to justify its truth.

Without a second thought I began to run, my sixteen year old professional gymnast legs propelling me forward with utmost speed and purpose. A scream that sounded like my sister pierced the air and I rushed around the lake faster than I thought I could move—the trees of the dense forest flying by me in a blur. As I reached the long stone walkway to our cabin my oldest sister, Cassandra, came running out to meet me—her hand pressed against the side of her neck.

Her face was pale and the fear in her eyes was enough to stop my breathing and make my heart race. The ends of her long blonde hair on one side were dark as if dipped in ink—ink that was still dripping from the tip all over her. It was pushing its way through her fingers on her neck as well. As she fell to her knees in front of me I rushed to her.

This was when I realized it wasn’t ink—it was blood; looking black due to no real light at this hour. Her eyes looked at me and with her last breath she said only one word, “Run!” She collapsed forward and I caught her. I kept saying her name over and over again in a whisper, but she was gone. I heard something smash inside the cabin and for a moment I honestly considered running, just like she had told me to—my darling little sister, only fourteen.

I gently lay her down and stood up, turning to run get help when I heard my other sister, Page, say “Leave her alone, she’s just a child!” This could only mean one thing; my little sister Flora, only six, was in danger. Without thinking I turned towards the cabin and as quietly as I could, I moved towards the open door.

The light above the table in the kitchen area of the great room of the cabin was near the door and I could see it was shattered. The only light was coming from a bedroom and bathroom, creating a creepy haze of lights and shadows about the room. And though enough to see by it wasn’t bright enough to wash away your childhood fear of the boogieman—which, I had to admit, this felt like.

As I stepped up onto the porch and peered into the room as best as I could without being seen, the first thing that caught my eye was my mother’s body on the floor and the pool of what looked like black ink around her head. My throat closed in on itself as a wailing cry caught there by my own fear.

I then noticed my father was on the floor, not far from her, his head at an unnatural angle and for a moment, just a moment, I thought I was going to hyperventilate and pass out. But luckily my twelve year old sister Page brought my focus back to the living—to what seemed to be a stand off in the middle of the room between her and our attacker.

The moon shining through the window seemed to illuminate the invader and I saw something I’d only read about in books—the face of an animal on a human body; eyes that seemed to glow in the dark like a cat’s, elongated canine teeth and blood on his face that ran down his chin and onto his clothes, a grin on his face.

I froze. I knew I should’ve gone charging in and attacked or run in and grabbed Flora and run as fast as I could—but I didn’t. I just stayed were I was, crouched outside the door, sweat pouring from every pore—watching as he playfully taunted my siblings with jokes and threats, his voice like silk and his words like fire.

When I finally found my head, my shaking hands reached out for the only thing near me—the wooden broom my father had used earlier that night to sweep the front porch. I grabbed it, stood up and broke it over my knee, keeping the end without the bristles with me and setting the other back down. There was no mistaking what this creature looked like. We’d all seen movies about them, read books—hell, I’d seen Dracula a least a dozen times.

I looked at the wooden broom handle in my hand, broken in such a way that the splintered end was pointy, and somewhere in my subconscious I decided to try and stake him with it. If these creatures were real then maybe, just maybe the lore surrounding how to kill them was too. Many stories are based on truth and I was hoping this one was as well.

I dropped back down to the floor and crawled into the room and under the table and stayed quiet. I could see Page, her petite twelve year old frame doing its best to hold steady. My eyes had adjusted and I could see better now. It was evident that Page had been bitten—the bite not hitting a main artery so blood wasn’t shooting out of her like it had with Cassandra. Yet she stumbled slightly, obviously week from whatever blood loss she’d withstood. And though feeling woozy, which is how she looked, she seemed determined to protect Flora, standing between her foe and her sister.

Waiting for my moment I watched as Page backed Flora away from the thing in our cabin with the glowing eyes that looked like the devil himself. But that devil followed them, walking past the table not even seeing me as I crouched now in the dark shadow of the table. I knew what I needed to do but I needed the element of surprise.

Finally, when he lunged for them I made my move. Without even thinking it through I came out from under the table with a roll that brought me to the space between the devil and Page. I stood up and with no hesitation I brought the wooden broom handle down where I knew the human heart would be.

The next three seconds felt like three minutes as my senses soaked up the visage of what was once possibly human. The thing smelled of blood, making me want to vomit. But I held it back, transfixed on his face and the inhuman perfection of it. Skin paler than a human’s yet passable as such—flawless and beautiful. It looked like if I were to touch it that the skin would feel like satin. An angel in the body of a demon was my deciding conclusion.

But as I drove the stake into his heart his perfectly flawless face transposed from playful taunting to utter shock and before I knew it, he turned to dust and disappeared. Just as he did I heard Flora scream out my name. I spun about to see a second devil, a woman who’d been in the shadows that I’d not seen, coming towards Flora with eyes on me.

“What have you done?!” she wailed out, pain on her face and then rage as she lunged for Flora.

I stepped in between them and fought with the woman, her long razor sharp nails reached for my eyes and her teeth for my neck. But I spun—using my own gymnastic training as well as her movements to my advantage. But she was stronger and faster than me and with one simple slashing motion and a side step that wasn’t fast enough, her one nail missed my eye by an inch, slicing my face open from temple to jaw.

With that distraction she was able to grab my arm, spin it behind my back and break it, as easy as I’d broken that broom handle. I let out a scream of pain and fell to my knees. As I did, the woman snatched up Flora and ran out the front door.

I ran after them. As my original weapon had rolled somewhere I picked up the other half of the broom in my good arm as I zipped through the door. As I rounded the bend of the cabin I saw her—a beautiful woman with short black hair and a smile on her face that sneered in such a way that I had no question in my mind that I’d kill her without hesitation.

She then laughed at me, as if the idea of me chasing her was absolutely hilarious. She resituated her hold on Flora who called out my name, her little Tigger toy that I’d given her years ago clutched in her hand, eyes pleading for me to come to her as her arms reached for me. It’s all it took to propel me forward. I ran through the grass and uneven ground towards her and then, as my eyes met Flora’s she disappeared.

In no way do I mean she vanished into thin air, though that is what it felt like. Flora’s captor had just simply turned and broken into a run and even though I continued to follow her it was apparent to me quickly that another myth was true—vampires were faster than humans and my lovely little Flora was gone.

I stood there for a moment, tears in my eyes, screaming her name but nothing answered me back—the forest was silent and dark. I must’ve stood there for at least five minutes trying to accept my sister was gone and worse yet; I could do nothing to help her. With the utmost difficulty I fought my feet’s will to stay put and turned around, walking slowly back to the cabin. I needed to talk to Page and find out what had happened.

When I got back to the cabin Page was lying on the floor by the front door. Obviously she’d tried to follow me but hadn’t been strong enough. The phone receiver from the old rotary phone on the wall above her was in her hand.

“Page?” I said tentatively as I approached her, cradling my broken arm.

“I called 911. Help is on the way.”

She looked very tired as I crouched down next to her. “It’s going to be okay,” I said, touching her blond curls. “Just, hang in there. We’ll be okay.”

I then saw her neck was still bleeding. I tried to rip the bottom of my shirt but with a broken arm it was rather difficult. Instead I just pulled it off and pressed it to her neck to try and stop the flow of blood.

She motioned to me and I leaned close to her. “There was a knock on the door,” she said, “We could hear a woman crying, saying her boyfriend and she had been in a fight. That he’d gotten physical with her and she was trying to get away from him. She claimed to just want to use our phone to call her family. Dad let her in and before the woman could even tell us what had fully happened or make a call there was a banging on the door.

“It was her boyfriend—the one you killed. He was acting drunk and out of control, yelling about how he loved her and to give him a second chance—he called her Cammy.” A sob caught in her throat and tears spilled down her cheeks.

“Shh—you don’t need to go into this now sweetie. Just wait until—”

“No. I need to tell you now.” She wiped the tears away even though they were still falling. “Dad went out on the porch to talk to him, shutting the door—leaving that girl alone with us.” With a pause for a labored breath her brown eyes looked at me as if fighting to stay awake. “It all happened so fast, Sean. The girl broke the light above the table and grabbed mom and bite into her neck, tearing it open! Sean, what does that?”

“I don’t know sweetie.” I could have told her it was a vampire but I didn’t want to believe it yet myself.

“I started screaming and Cassandra came out of the bathroom just as the front door opened with a bang and the man from outside came in, with dad over his shoulder and threw him on the floor near mom. He carried and tossed him like he weighed nothing Sean! Dad.”

Our father was a large man. Easily six four pushing 280 lbs of muscle—so to carry him easily was unfathomable to my twelve year old sister. To me it fit into the mold I was starting to accept as fitting the myth of vampires—except one thing.

“Did you hear dad invite the man in?”

“No. In fact, he told him that he wasn’t able to come in and talk to her right now.”

“Did dad say he could once he was sober?”


Myth number three was a lie—vampires could enter your home without an invite. I shuddered. “What happened next sweetie?”

“Cassandra ran for the door but he caught her. He was nowhere near the door but in a blink he had his arms around her and bit into her neck. I would’ve run to her but the woman grabbed me and—” Page just resituated my T-shirt on her neck. “And I’m sure they would’ve drained us dry but suddenly they just stopped. Flora was hiding in the doorway of your room and they both saw her peaking around the corner and stopped, dropping us both. Cassandra was the closest to the door so she ran out of it to get help.”

“And she found me.”

We heard the sirens approaching now. When they arrived Page was bandaged and put into the ambulance. I answered a few questions to the cops as someone tended to my face, but due to my broken arm the paramedics wouldn't let me stay and ushered me into the back of the ambulance with her. As I sat down, my arm in a sling now to keep it steady, I took Page’s hand with the hand of my good right arm. She was cold to the touch and for the first time I considered the idea that she may not make it. Tears filled my eyes.

“You hang in there Pagey, you hear me? You’re all I have left.”

She gave me this smile, the same kind my mother used to give me when I’d ask her to do something for me she couldn’t do, but wished she could. It was so adult of her—the look of acceptance she gave me as she squeezed my hand lightly.

“Sean? How did you know how to kill them?”

“I don’t know—I just did.”

“Don’t you ever stop—you hear me?”


“You find Flora and you kill as many as you can. Promise me.”


“Promise me, please Sean.”

I leaned down and hugged her as best as I could. “I promise.”

“Thank you. I love you big brother.”

I felt her kiss my cheek and then her whole body relaxed as she died, right there in my arms, peacefully, knowing I’d keep my promise.

Obviously I wasn’t able to compete in the Olympics that year as I was suppose to and my spot was filled by a nice guy whose name I honestly don’t remember. Instead I went to live with my mother’s sister’s family who lived in upstate New York not far from the cabin and a week after it had all happened I’d slipped out of my aunt’s home and driven to the cabin. The yellow police tape was still up.

I walked around the property and even ventured into the woods multiple times for the rest of the spring. I found evidence of where they’d been living out there; a cabin with no windows—proving another myth correct; sunlight was a weapon. I knew Flora had been there as I found her Tigger toy, but not her.

As the summer started I joined the local Jujitsu dojo. Gymnastics held too much pain for me but the foundation it created made martial arts seem like a natural progression. By the time school registration began I had a plan. If I was going to keep my promise to my sister I needed to not only learn about these creatures, but I needed to train—I needed to learn how to use every weapon, including the human body. I tore through the yellow pages and the school extra-curricular activities. I joined wrestling, archery, and track as well as taking other martial arts when I had the time.

One day, shortly after my 20th birthday I woke up and knew I was ready. I was toned, fast, and a deadly force with or without weapons. I’d been researching, learning, and training for four years and it was time. I packed my bags, left money and a note on my aunt’s kitchen table and my keys under the mat out front.

I got into the car and as the engine hummed to life I looked up at the home that had housed me for the past four years and I knew I’d miss it. I also understood with utmost clarity that I could not begin my fight without putting them in harm’s way—hence why I was leaving and why I was doing so as a different person. So with one last look I put the car into drive and I left.

With onle one more errand to run I stopped by a random barber shop that didn’t know me and had my long dark hair cut short—exposing my wide, almost black, curls again, and then had him shave my face smooth. I now looked like my fake ID and papers I’d paid a lot of money for a year ago that at the time had made me 21, now 22. I had a new driver’s license, high school transcripts, passport and birth certificate.

I got back into my beat up old black, 1967 Dodge Charger Hemi that reminded me of a short hearse to be honest, and pulled the driver’s license out of my backpack and smiled—I thought my mother would be proud to see I’d chosen her maiden name. From here on out Sean Valentine, the hippie looking child was no more…he was dead and gone…and Sean Cameron, the vampire hunter, was born.

© Copyright 2011 Tamsin Silver

THIS might be an idea of Sean AFTER her shaved it all off...

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Naked Picture or Innapropriate Touching?

Only a few more days till Christmas and even fewer until I get molested by an airport employee...oh the joys of the holiday season...

From what I understand I have the option of a body scan that is like X-ray vision---seeing through my clothes to my fat ass OR a gratuitous feel up of my personage to make sure I'm not hiding a knife in my vagina. Un-fucking-believable! We are out of control! It's like the Red Scare but instead of people pointing fingers at others and screaming "Natzi" we all are looked at as potential terrorists because the government has us all scared stupid. *sigh*

I've heard stories that when someone had the "pat down" (not what I'd call it but hey, "backroom lovin'" isn't probably the best title anyways) the TSA decided to reach down into someone's pants. I personally have a problem with this. This is violating my person. If a man I didn't know (or woman for that matter) walked up to me on the street and reached into my pants or down my bra I could have them arrested but its "okay" if the government does it? Ah...ah...ah...BULLSHIT (said w/in a sneeze to make it less harsh).

I can understand the old "pat down" and I can even understand the archway that discovers metal objects...both of which I feel do the job fine. If I've got a gun, that metal detector will go off. So why do we need a body scan? And why does it need to be so clear on our body parts? Men...the size of your penis will be on display so be prepared, we'll have a picture! And ladies...well...I already know how we feel about our bodies SO...I KNOW how this concept makes us feel...HORRIBLE. FAT. UNCOMFORTABLE. VIOLATED. Need I go on? Some of us don't like the idea of someone we love having to see us naked let alone a stranger so...the scan makes us VERY unhappy. But, alas, the government doesn't care about your feelings...they're trying to make sure you're safe. And I understand that...but there had GOT to be a better way than this...there has to be.

Here is what a Backscanner X-ray Scan looks like:

Here's what a Millimeter Wave Scan looks like:

So, would you rather have their hands ON you or have them see you naked?

It's bad either way, right?

Well...since I'm flying home for Christmas on Thursday morning ( some ungodly hour making me need to be there at 4am) I will get the honor of choosing. Naked photo or inappropriate touching? Hmmm...tough decision. Guess it depends on how lonely I'm feeling at that moment and if the guy doing the "gropping" is hot. ;)

Celebrities must be really hating this. Someone could leak those pics...someone could feel them up just to say they did...hell, I know of one celeb who FedEx's her underwear back to her home after vacation so that no one will steal her used underwear. Crazy huh? Not that crazy...I had my clean underwear stolen once on a flight to Michigan! And honey, I'm not famous and they were just satin thongs from Victoria Secret...not lace...not string thongs...not worn. I have NO idea why someone took them. Weird people. So now all my underwear goes in my carry on. Why that celeb doesn't do that, I have no idea. But hey...each to their own.

But enough on the negative...let's look at the positive shall we? I get to see my dad, step mom and step sister for the holidays AND I get to drive about town in my dad's van and visit friends from high school and so on and so forth. It will be very fun! It will be worth the "Naked Picture or Innapropriate Touching" moment.

I enjoy playing you? I've picked up four presents for each member of my family who will be at the house on Christmas morning and all of them are going to be a suprise! I hope they like what I got them...I'm pretty sure they will. My dad is sorta hard to buy for because when you ask him what he wants/needs he says, "Nothing. I don't need anything." *sigh* Thanks Dad. That helps sooo much. But I usually get him a Borders Gift Card, movies, or sweaters. This year will be no different. I got him some movies, the BGC, and though I didn't get him a sweater...I'm excited to be taking him out for a lunch date to see The Dawn Treador. I made that poor man read that book to me THREE times as a think he deserves his daughter to take him to see it on the big screen. :)

As far as my step sister and step mom go? Uh...can't say...Di reads this blog. ;)

I get to stay with the fam until Tuesday afternoon. I then go back to work on Wednesday and Thursday...but Friday the 31st is off for the New Year Holiday...and I hop on a plane to Orlando, FL that Friday (my friend paid for the flight cause he's amazing!) and I get to hang out in Orlando for the New DISNEY! I'm loving this, btw...LOVING it! Here's to hoping we get warm weather down there!!!!!! I promise to have LOTS of embarrassing pics of me taken while I'm there and post the ones that aren't too bad here for you to all see. :) Especially if I can locate Winnie the Pooh!

Anyhoo...if you're traveling this holiday the following things please:

#1. Be organized at security and get your coat, shoes, jewelry, etc off quickly and efficiently.
#2. Decide if you want a good "feel up" or a "naked pic" before you get there so you're ready to commit to one or the other so as to not hold up the line cause all those people behind you want to get that part OVER just like you do.
#3. Be nice to the TSA employee...they've been told to do this as part of their job (even though it sucks).
#4. If a TSA employee gets out of line when touching you...CALMLY talk to a supervisor on if their "touch" was warranted. By making a scene you hold up everyone behind you AND you risk missing your flight that you PAID for.

Just sayin'...

Have a safe and happy holiday and know one important last thing...

I choose the body scan. Have a pic of me, TSA! Knock yourself out! Can I bend over for you while I'm at it? ;)

Peace all!

Tamsin :)

P.S. I need to share a funny pic with you...since my blog today was primarily my rant on TSA. We must end on a fun note. This pic was stolen from my Twitter pal Ana in Wales...enjoy!

An Exciting Announcement!

As you all know, I did a photo-shoot for Moon Over Manhattan (see pic above) and it went REALLY well. And...I had said this was my "test run". Meaning, if it went well I'd do photos for the primary series I've been writing called Living Dead Girl. This cast is MUCH larger than Moon Over Manhattan. In fact...probably double the cast size if not TRIPPLE! Yowza!'s the announcement...


I will be making a list of characters I will need for the shoot and posting their decscriptions on here AND on Craigslist, NYC. As soon as I open the floodgates for pics to come in...I will let you all know where to send them for consideration.

We'll probably do a daytime shoot and a nighttime shoot (if we can) as I have MANY vampire characters in that story. We may do pics inside as well as outside...but not sure yet. As decisions are made you'll be the first to know. Personally, I've very excited to get to do this! In fact...I've already found my "Alex".

This is him. His name is David Mavricos. He's perfect for Alex.

As I find the rest of the characters I'll post photos so you can get more and more excited as we approach the photo-shoot!

Also...other big news...the website will have the best pictures from the Moon Over Manhattan photo-shoot VERY SOON! hopefully will have VIDEO as of the new year of behind the scenes stuff as well as a quick interview with me taken after the shoot was over.

So...many cool things coming keep your eye on the blog!


Tamsin :)

Thursday, December 16, 2010

LOMBARDI on Broadway - A Review

Vincent Lombardi - Dan Lauria
Michael McCormick - Keith Nobbs
Marie Lombardi - Judith Light
Dave Robinson - Robert Christopher Riley
Paul Hornung - Bill Dawes
Jim Taylor - Chris Sullivan

Have I ever mentioned my strange love of football movies? No? Oh, well...I have a strange love for football are some of my faves...

Remember the Titans
Friday Night Lights
We Are Marshall
Blind Side

I could go on and on but I won't bore get my point. :)

You're asking yourself now, "Is she a big football fan?" Nope. I enjoy watching college football with my friends or my dad (and yes, he and I scream at the TV together) and pro football when I have to with my guy pals...but I don't tend to watch on my own. But football movies? SUCKER FOR THEM!

Hell, I love sports movies a lot too...and I suck at most sports so...maybe it comes down to the fact that I wish that I'd been good at just one sport! Okay, I kick ass at badminton but really...should I really admit to that? Oh wait...I just did...

Anyhoo...on to the point of my post...

Last night my pal Seth returned a favor. I took him with me to Shakespeare in the Park this year for Winters Tale and he got free tickets to Lombardi, put on by Circle In The Square, and POOF! I got to go! This play hadn't even been on my radar to see but I'm SO happy I got to go!

As many of you know, Vincent Lombardi is one of the most celebrated football coaches of all time who unfortunately died at the early age of 57 from colon cancer. The play, LOMBARDI, is based on a book written by David Maraniss called "When Pride Still Mattered; A Life of Vince Lombardi". The play primarily spans a week in November, 1965 in Green Bay, WI. It is the week that Michael McCormick arrives in Wisconsin to stay with Mr. Lombardi so as to do an article for "LOOK" magazine (which, btw, never printed his article, feeling it was too artsy an article with not enough football).

There are flashbacks throughout the play to 1958, 1959 and 1964 as well as we learn how Vince almost became a banker instead of a football coach, how he took over the Green Bay Packers, and what made him tick...what made them win. We also get a really wonderful inside view of his relationship with his wife (played magestically by Judith Light). Judith and Dan make an amazing team on stage. With timing that can't be taught---you either have it or you don't. They do.

Dan Lauria's portrayal of Vince is so incredibly believable, solid and powerful you would swear he'd met the man! Keith Nobbs who plays the reporter is your narrator throughout the piece as well as performing inside the story itself which takes great timing, total commitment to dialogue and movement, and the ability to switch gears as fast as you can turn on a light switch. He does this with ease and satin smoothness so you never feel jerked around inside the story. That is also a big props to the writing as the way.

The cast is only six people---though, to be honest, it felt like more. The other three characters are the three football players who are the keyhole we get to peak through to learn a little about who Lombardi really he loves his he loves the game...and so on. All three of these men were fantastic but I won't lie, Robert Christopher Riley (who plays Dave Robinson) truly stands out of the three as exceptional! He's not only a joy to watch but captivates your attention anytime he speaks with a full commitment between body and dialogue. Not that the other two didn't carry their weight but Robert, to me, stuck out in a good way.

Before I forget, I want to give props to the designers of this show. The lights and multi-media especially with a definite nod to set design. The stage is a blank rounded-off-at-the-corners rectangle that stays bare except for when you're in Vince's home or office or the bar the players hang out in. All set pieces come up from the floor and then slink back down and disappear when not needed. The living room piece for Vince's home spins so that when they do sit down to do a scene it can move around so the audience (which is on all sides as the play is produced in the round) all get a chance to watch it from each angle. It's brilliant! But then again, I love a minimalistic set as much as I love an intricate set...if it transports you to where you need to be to be enveloped by the show, then its fantastic...and this one was just that.

The lights...and bajesus they have a lot of them...including ones that look like football stadium lights on all four corners...are brilliant (pun intended). Here's a shot of the ceiling above the performance space...the tech geek in me was like, "Weeee!" :

What you can't see here is that there were long, rectangular screens that came down on the two longer sides of the set over the audience that showed video AND they also did that on the large floor. They actually had footage of the games mentioned in the story and you got to watch them clear as day...on the floor of the set. Just a brilliant way to still show the game for stage. I wouldn't be suprised to see this become a made-for-TV movie at's all prepped and ready for it if you ask me.

But, I feel lucky to have seen it live. It was a beautiful story that holds your attention (without an intermission mind you) for the duration and you never stop basking in the fantastic writing, the amazing performances, and the awe inspiring set/lights. For awhile you get transported to Green Bay, hang out with one of the greatest men in football. Not a bad way to spend a night if you ask me.

If it wasn't on your radar either...put it there! Get out and see this show before its gone.

Stay warm New Yorkers...stay warm!

Tamsin :)

P.S. If you click on the title of the blog you will find the official Broadway page for the play. If you click on the LOMBARDI link highlighted in a purplish color above it will take you to some clips from the play that were filmed. ENJOY!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

I was punched in the face by a drunk really, it's true!

So here's what happened...

Last night my pal Matt from Boston (I've mentioned him before) was in town for a concert that was canceled...he'd already bought his bus ticket and a hotel room for the night so he figured, what the hell, I'll go to NYC for the night anyways and see some friends.

So he and six of his friends (counting me) met up at SPICE (a really great Thai place in Union Square over on 13th St. and 5th Ave.) and we waited an eternity (even with reservations) but we finally got a seat and enjoyed some great conversation and food. I totally give this restaurant five stars! Great food and portions at a small price! I had a perfectly sized appetizer of spring rolls, a glass of wine and some Pad Thai for only $25 (counting tax and tip). A steal if I do say so!

Anyway, I digress---we finished up around 10-ish, hit the bathroom (I must mention the bathroom because the dance music was so loud in there it was like a club all in itself...we thought it was hilarious!), and headed outside into the FREEZING weather (I think it was like...18 degrees or something last night). This is when I noticed a stocky guy in his late 30's with short dark hair in a long black coat, a cigarette in his hand and a long red line down the side of his face standing in the corner of the wind barrier doorway for the bar next door. I remember him because I thought, "Wow! That's dedication! It's too cold out here to smoke!".

Now, two of Matt's friends had to jet so the five of us were huddled in a circle talking and saying goodnight when the guy I'd noticed came out, suddenly was trying to push his way into our group. This would've been fine except he grabbed ahold of the back part of my left arm tightly, pinching the skin and muscle there roughly. We couldn't understand him. He cigarette was still unlit but he wasn't asking for a light, his tone was mean---that's all I could tell. I tried to pull away from him and he gripped me harder. I asked him to let go of me and he didn't. I raised my voice so others would know what was going on and said, "Let go of me now!"

Next thing I knew his left hook caught me in the teeth. I automatically moved my head when I saw something in my face so the punch didn't land fully or where he probably meant to hit me (the nose is my guess). It took me a moment to realize what he'd done. It wasn't till my tooth started screaming in pain that I realized "that f*cker punched me!"

Well...since he'd come up between Matt and I, Matt was the first to see this and he saved me from decking the guy myself by restraining him from hitting me again. The man fought back (cause drunk men are stupid) and by the time I turned around Matt was fightin this guy off. I ran inside the restaurant and told them to call 911 (Like I what? Don't have a cell phone of my own? Obviously not...thinking...clearly.)---that a drunk guy was hitting people. Maybe I said "hit someone"? No idea. the time I got outside the man was down, Matt had him pinned to the ground, the bouncer from the club next door FINALLY came out and Matt is telling the guy to apologize to me. Well, NOW my anger kicks tooth is throbbing...its freezing cold...I'm appropriately pissed off now. He apologized and of course my reaction guessed it...non-accepting. I pretty much told him he could be sorry all he wanted but it didn't change the fact that he punched a woman for no reason.

The bouncer then tells us he hit another woman just earlier that evening! SAY WHAT?!!!

The guy goes to get up and it honestly takes everything I have not to kick him in the face with the heel of my combat boot. Instead I yelled at him to stay down---as did Matt and the bouncer. I'm sure I said something like, "Go ahead and get up, give me a reason!"...again...not proud but this is me being honest and truthful so as to get this whole thing outta my head, off my chest, etc. Needless to say he stayed down...I never laid a hand (or boot) on him.

In fact, he didn't get up until the calvary arrived. And I do mean the calvary. Fire Dept, Ambulance and NYPD. All for little ol' me? Uh, no. Seems when they called the cops they told them a car hit a pedestrian. LOL! So we had all of NY's finest there for one simple dumbass drunk. Oh well. finish my tale of "WTF?" I ended up in the ambulance to put an ice pack on my lip while they took my info, my statement, and so on. At least the inside of the ambulance was warm! They asked if I wanted to press charges. My initial response in my head was, "No. I'm not broken or bleeding and he's just drunk." BUT...then I remembered he'd hit another woman not an hour ago (Probably where that long red line on his face came from. SHE probably scratched him...which is more than I did but oh well.) and who knew who he was going home to and if I didn't press charges he'd be left where he was (as he wasn't beligerantly drunk...just mad drunk). So I said yes, I'd be pressing charges and they took him off to jail.

I have no idea if he had to stay the night or if they just booked him or whatever. I was told the DA would call me today.

To be honest, I feel bad that I decided to press charges. I'm not that type of person. I believe in forgivness but I just didn't want him to hurt someone else. He could've hurt them worse. Hell, he coulda hurt me worse but luckily my friend was there to save me and thankfully the man didn't have a gun or something. So...I plan to stick by my decision and press up in court...the whole nine yards. If he's hitting multiple women he needs help and unless someone wakes him up to that fact with something like say, pressing charges, he could end up hurting someone else...probably worse...and I can't live with that more than I can't live with the idea that I should've just forgiven him.

I got home and took three Motrin, put my bite splint in to steady my slightly loose front tooth and went to bed (my screaming headache making that almost impossible). I'm wearing said splint today tooth is still sore to the touch and a bit wiggly. If it doesn't solidify up by tomorrow night I'll go see the denist. Bah...the dentist. Ick.

SO that is my tale of woe...and here's what I want you to learn from it...

He could've had a gun in his pocket. Me being snitty and demanding he let go of me, even though he was hurting me, probably wasn't the smartest move. I could've asked nicer I suppose (even though the first asking was nicer and did nothing) or really pulled away hard. But I panicked. He was grabbing me and hurting me and I panicked. If this happens to you...don't. Ask nicely and pull away hard. If he'd had a gun I'd be dead right now so...lesson learned.

What's sad is this morning on the way to work I found myself slightly scared by large men who got to close to me. They all were complete gentlemen (moved out of my way, offered me the door, etc.) but I flinched when they got near (arm movement near me). I hope that goes away fast. I think men are amazing full of honor and so protective and wonderful providers. Just look at my hero Matt! It hurts my heart to think for awhile I'll be jumpy around men who move too fast near my body/face.

So ladies...please be carefull out there. Remember...not everyone cares what they do to you.

Much love, Tamsin xo

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Writers Rock!

Today will not be a long post as I have a lot to do but...I wanted to make note of something awesome in my world right now and those who deserve to know it.

As you know, this was my first year with NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) and I dragged my ass out of my bed on Sunday's and went to write-ins down in Tribeca. There I got to know some of the best ladies (and a few men). I then went to both of the post NaNo parties; The "Thank God It's Over" Party AAAND the Christmas Potluck at Alexis' place! The latter of which was this past Sunday and I shoulda taken pics but I didn't...I was too busy eating and talking to pull out a camera. But, I have pics from the TGIO Party that I'll post in this blog entry for you, so you can see some of the great folks who joined my world this year. Unfortunately I don't have pics of all of them but here's what I do have.......

Me and Alexis:

Me and Clarice:

Kate and Alexis:

Ellen and Clarice:

Alexis and Kate again...calling out raffle winners:

(As you know I won Kate's book during this raffle and did a review...scoll down if you missed it!)

I suppose all I want to say is this...

If you are a writer and you've not gotten out there to meet fellow writers in your NEED to! I know writing tends to be an "alone sport" but...these people I've gotten the chance to start to know are just wonderful and supportive folks who understand me as a writer and THAT in itself is a gift. In Theatre we automatically get a community of support with our fellow actors/producers/etc but with writing you tend to be on your own---but you don't need to be. Not that my other friends, most of which are in the theatre, aren't FANTASTICALLY supportive of my writing---they are (especially Rachel, Lauren and Josh!), but I've not had writer friends before---people who I know and connect to primarily through writing.

Having these people in my life, as silly as it may sound, makes it seem real---the fact that I write and my committment to it. Their support and friendship gives me an extra emotional boost when I feel down during the "submit your book over and over and over again" process. THEY understand! It's a great thing to have others in your life who are doing what you're doing...chasing a dream along with you. It's wonderful to be supported and to give support! I can already see how they all have this potential to become just this amazing network of writers I trust and appreciate who will make a difference in my life and I pray I can return that favor.

So, thank you to those who accepted me into their fold of writers this year. You are definitely a highlight of my 2010! I am looking forward to 2011 when we'll continue our adventure of this daunting become published writers! And we will do it! With supportive friends, how can we not?

And as always, I leave you with my fave picture of all....and yes, that is Clarice and me photo-bombing in the back...LOL!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Halloween 2010 (late post, I know)

That's right! I know Christmas is almost upon us but, I realized last night when I finally downloaded pics off my camera (which I'd not done since the photo-shoot) that I had missed blogging about my Halloween...TRAVISTY!!!!

So here we go...

HALLOWEEN 2010 - Part One; The Pumpkin Masssacre

I was greatly blessed this year. I, who normally sit at home and do nothing on Halloween, had TWO nights of things to do. I attribute this to the GREAT friends I've made in the Goth/Industrial Scene here in NYC. Explanation for previous years: Most of my friends are "couples". I've been one of few single ladies in my circle of friends (until this year as I've met many more) and couples hang out with couples...invite couples to things...have couples over for dinner...invite them to parties. It's a built in date and that tends to equal invites. Don't ask is what it is.

Anyhoo, as I'm single I tend to not get invited to "couples" evenings...makes sense, right? So normally I'm home for Halloween unless I'm throwing said party. Unfortunately my current apartment is far uptown and has NO space for a party (living room is TINY). So I stay home, eat some candy or order in a nice dinner to splurge and watch a movie or something.

THIS year was different. I did get invited to a party! :) My darling friend Sheri invited me to the 13th Annual Pumpkin Massacre Party! It was at a loft down on White Street (which is a ways downtown but easy to get to) and even though I needed a 2nd costume for the night and a pumpkin to massacre I was on board.

I was the first to arrive (of course----and to think, I left late!) and helped them set up. I got to chat with Sheri's new boyfriend who is an actor, his name is Rodney and he's really awesome! The pic to the left of this is of course Sheri and he in costume. :)

Followed by a pic of me and Sheri. Who am I dressed up as? Hint #1: There was a movie out this year, based on a comic book, and the leading girl is who I'm dressed as. Hint #2: That's a shoelace tied around my neck. ---and yes, that wig itched like hell!

So, there was tons of food, drinks and pumpkins! Here is my poor pumpkin before I killed him:

Here he is after I finished:

Seeing as I hadn't done one of these by myself in FOREVER I was pretty impressed with my final product. :) Now, for those who didn't guess who I was, I'm not super'd have to be a fan of Scott Pilgrim to know I was Ramona Flowers. In all the pics of her I found her hair is purple or pink or blue and she wears shorts with tights, combat boot, ripped stuff and a shoelace of her brother's on her neck because he passed away.

HALLOWEEN 2010 - Part Two; Vampire Freaks Halloween Party

So...THIS is the party Lauren, Robbie and Garret had been planning on. Here they are (L to R is Robbie, Lauren, Garret). Robbie is the Heath Ledger version of the Joker while Garret is the comic book version of the Joker...and of course, Lauren is Harley Quinn...the Joker's girlfriend. :)

What about me though right? I'll be honest...if I'd known they were all going as Batman characters I'd have picked one also(possibly Penguin...insert jokes here) but no...I'd already chosen to be Snow White (hello...I'm short with short dark hair and pale was an easy choice). Here I am with Lauren...

Here are a few pics of me in the most whorish version of Snow White I think I've seen to date....nickname; Ho White...

To be honest...I have NO idea where all that cleavage came from...

ANYHOOOOO...As for time at the club! Here are some of the decorations...

Here is a great pic of me and Jet (Mad Hatter) and then me and Annabel (sexy witch)...

I love this pic as it wasn't planned...both Jokers with misty fog around cool huh?

Anyhoo...we stayed at the club until Jet and Annabel both DJ'd so I got home around 2:30am (ouch) and then dragged my carcass to work the next day. I think the day after Halloween should be a paid day off from work...unless it falls on a Friday or Saturday...just an idea I'll toss out there...

So Halloween 2010 was fun! Many thanks to Sheri, Jet, Annabel, Lauren, Garret and Robbie for making it so great this year!

Tamsin xo :)

Monday, December 6, 2010

Review of "In Hot Pursuit" by Kate McMurray

It's that time something I've read! But this get hot, sexy, gay man porn...that's right, you didn't read me wrong.

So, I know the author of this and it's her first publication and I won a copy of her book in the raffle at the end of NaNoWriMo and as you can see by the cover---well, it draws some attention on the train whilst reading it. :) I had more than one person tilt their head and try to see what the hell I was reading...and I'd chuckle inside. You are saying, "Why not just keep it covered?" And I say, "Where's the fun in that?"

To be honest, I've NEVER read male erotica before and I love that a female wrote this...after much research; being as she is not a gay man. Though one might find similarities between gay men and straight women...that doesn't mean research for intimate moments doesn't need to be done to KUDOS to Kate! These steamy scenes were STEAMY and accurate (according to my gay roommate).

FIRST OFF...LET ME SET UP THE PLOT FOR YOU...(I pulled this from the website)...

Hard-working NYPD cop Noah Tobin didn’t even want to go on vacation. But it’s been a tough eighteen months since the death of his lover, so he’s determined to make the most of it. On his first night in sunny Florida, a chance encounter with a handsome man in a bar bathroom jumpstarts something in Noah that’s been dormant for all those months. Then the man disappears.

Noah’s vacation is thrown into upheaval because he can’t just let it go when he learns that the mysterious man who turned his life upside down went missing. He volunteers to help with the manhunt for his mystery man, a wealthy restaurateur named Harrison Knowles. But finding Harry is only the beginning of Noah's hot pursuit.

Publisher's Note: This book contains explicit sexual content, graphic language, and situations that some readers may find objectionable: Male/male sexual practices.

Okay, on with my review...

I actually loved this story. It's a fast read--only 50,000 words or so--and I read it in a day (well, half a day) and it holds your attention throughout without a problem. I'd not recommend this book for straight men, let me say that up front. You won't like this--too much gay sex for you. But gay men and ladies who appreciate a hot man's body? I think you will.

The story is written in first person from the viewpoint of Noah, our cop who has been through a horrible tragedy of love. Anyone who's lost someone can relate to this book. My eyes teared up more than once...but I'm a sap so, take it for what you will.

What I love about this book, other than it's fast pace, witty humor, and fun leading man is that the primary focus isn't the sex...its how Noah's broken heart gets the chance to heal....the sex is a natural part of the relationship that blossoms from the situation(s) and is never unwarranted (even the hot scene in the bathroom---or shall I say the FIRST hot scene in the bathroom?---Chapter Two!). Yeah, its a little more often than in other books but hey, ITS A ROMANCE PEOPLE...that's how they roll.

I think that the LGBT community should take pride in this story. It's a great tribute to how gay men feel in the work place, hiding who they are, and coming to terms with that. One of the big things for Noah is that he's a cop and many cops in the NYPD (as he says) are homophobic. I don't know if that's true, but in this book that's the premise (and it's not a hard premise to believe). Part of Noah's journey isn't just getting over Josh, or falling in love with Harry, or even the mystery segment of the story (kidnapping and drugs and gun fire, oh my!) as much as it is with him learning to love himself as well as someone else again.

I think we all can relate to that.

So if you get the chance to give 'er a read I think you'll find you can relate to many things in this book even if you're not a gay man.

I leave you with my favorite disclaimer in this book from the Publisher Page in front. It says, "Many of the acts described in our BDSM/fetish titles can be dangerous. Please do not try any new sexual practice, whether it be fire, rope, or whip play, without the guidance of an experienced practitioner. Neither Loose Id nor its authors will be responsible for any loss, harm, injury or death resulting from use of the information contained in any of its titles."


Question though....wouldn't "loss" be same as "death"? And if its not...what do you "lose" while doing BDSM/fetish things? Maybe they once had someone loose a hand from handcuffing? Who knows! LOL!

Have a great week all! I'll have more up with pics from the NaNoWriMo party next!


Tamsin :)

P.S. I probably should mention that this book in particular has no fire, rope, handcuff play (etc) in it. But lots of time in bathrooms! :)