Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Taking the Road Toward Emotional Journeys

It's time to start planning those summer getaways and today's guest in My Writing Cornner has the perfect book to take along. Author Terry Segan is making a return appearance to my blog and she says she's out to get a reaction from those who read her books. Her latest book sounds like it fills the bill!

Terry is originally from Commack, NY, but she now resides in Nevada. She says that to appease her gypsy soul and travel cravings, she’s rarely found at home on the weekends. Her many journeys inspire the paranormal mysteries filling the pages of her books. She adds that some of her best ideas are worked out while traveling on the backseat of her husband’s motorcycle. His only request is to be a chalk outline in one of her novels—providing she’s still writing fiction. Terry’s goals are to cause her readers to laugh out loud, cry with joy, or cower under the covers wondering if that thump under the bed was real or imagined.  Let's learn more about Terry and her latest book.

What is your book you will feature today and how did you come up with the idea to write it?

The title is Five Steps to Celestia. My inspiration for the story came from a driving trip through Oregon. At the time, my husband and I had only known each other a year, when he chose to take his RV to Oregon for the summer months. I drove there with him, then flew back to Nevada, where I still worked. The scenery was beautiful and kick-started my creative juices, so I jotted down some notes about a story, then put it aside while finishing other projects. Since then, we’ve made several trips through the Pacific Northwest via car and motorcycle. We’ve visited lakes, waterfalls, ocean shores, and wineries along the way. The views from the coastal roads were breathtaking, and they helped form the book I wrote. Of course, my genre is paranormal mystery, so I added fantastical elements. The result is Five Steps to Celestia.

Let's get a tagline and blurb:

A mysterious plant, a forgotten necklace, and years of lost memories…

Twenty-two years after a tragic accident claimed Joy’s memories, a chance discovery in a gift shop nudges her forgotten past to the surface. Was it the cashier’s purple necklace, the Celestia seeds, or long-suppressed recollections pushing her to remember her former life?

As she searches for clues leading home, unknown elements threaten her current happiness and those she loves. When a cryptic symbol forms on her wrist and additional instructions appear on the seed packets, they offer more confusion than clarity. 

With her best friend’s help, Joy strings together the missing pieces of her mysterious provenance. Her quest uncovers those who have paid the price for her reckless youth. Will she be welcomed back with open arms or scorned for having survived? 

Let's hear directly from Joy:

Tell us about your current life. What do you really like about it and what would you like to change?

The most important thing in my life is Grace, my daughter. She’s grown into a smart and vibrant young woman, who brings me happiness every day. I count myself fortunate that she works with me at the winery I own. My other treasure in life is my best friend, Suzi. Everyone needs a pal like her. No matter what the situation, she’s always there for me whether it’s happiness, grief, adventure, or laughter. The one thing missing is Drake, my late husband. He welcomed me into his life, despite neither of us knowing who I was or where I’d come from. My memory never returned, yet he gave me a name and loving family. We spent twenty wonderful years together, and it breaks my heart that he won’t be here to enjoy our golden years.

Joy, what do you want for your future?

I’d like my daughter to take the reins of Mystic Swirl, the winery that had been started by Drake and now belongs to me. Grace was only four when her father and I married, and I believe with all my heart he would want this legacy for her. The sticky part is her husband, Owen, a controlling, arrogant man without much business sense. He’s chomping at the bit to take control of the place, while I’m pushing her to be the sole owner, which is what her father would want.

What are your strengths?

I’m very resilient and compassionate. I try my best to give everyone the benefit of the doubt, however, that doesn’t mean I’m a pushover. Some may add stubbornness to that list, but I prefer to look at it as doing the right thing when necessary. And if the right thing means standing my ground in the face of adversity, then I’ll gladly accept the challenge.

What are your weaknesses?

While I mentioned compassion as one of my strengths, it’s also a weakness. In trying to give everyone a fair chance, I blindly put the ones I love in danger. When I trusted new people who came into my life, I found out too late that they didn’t have my best interests at heart. Those I hold very dear paid the price for my misguided faith.

What has now happened in your life that changes things?

My memories have begun returning. A previous life I thought would never be recovered has now presented itself in odd ways. Dreams, becoming nightmares, show me flashes from my past life, as well as other mystical occurrences I can’t rationalize. I bought these Celestia seeds in a gift shop, and now that I’ve planted them, new instructions have materialized on the package. A raised symbol has appeared on my wrist, and I can’t muster the strength to remove this purple vial necklace I’d received in the hospital after my accident years ago. I’m compelled to follow the clues to the end—but I’m afraid I won’t like what I find. Perhaps fear of losing all I love should be added to my list of weaknesses as I move forward to discover my mysterious past.

Want more? Let's get an EXCERPT:

“Michael,” Joy screamed, clutching at the man in front of her. Her mouth formed his name again, but no sound emitted. Sensing weightlessness, she no longer felt the bike beneath her. As her body flew, she saw clouds, trees, dirt—it all spun. Cold air rushed past as she soared. She glimpsed Michael still clutching onto thea handlebars of the motorcycle, as he flew over the cliff and was gone.

The impact jolted the back of her head. Pain coursed through her shoulders and hips. Then everything went black.

“Joy! Wake up! Joy!” Suzi stood by the bed shaking her. She never looked so scared—or so ridiculous in a baggy T-shirt and penguin pajama pants. With her blonde hair wrapped in pink curlers, she looked even more comical. Suzi continued shaking Joy even after her eyes opened. “Joy. You’re dreaming. Wake up!”

“I’m awake. What? What is it?” Joy, confusion tightening her jaw muscles, wondered why the woman woke her. “What’s wrong?”

“What’s wrong? What’s wrong?” She heaved for breath. “You were screaming. It must’ve been a nightmare. Are you all right?” Her body trembled. “Oh God, I need to sit down.” Shoving Joy over, she collapsed onto the bed.

More concerned about Suzi, she asked, “Are you all right?”

“I’m fine. What happened?” Suzi asked, still visibly upset, her face flushed.

Joy couldn’t remember anything except being shaken awake. They had hit the wine bottle (or two) hard before bedtime.

“You were calling out.”


The older woman put a hand to her heaving chest. “You were yelling. Who’s Michael?”

How bizarre, Joy thought. Why would she ask her about a man who wasn’t her deceased husband?

“I give up. Who’s Michael?”

“You called his name. Hell, you screamed his name. He was either in danger, or you were having wild sex.” Suzi’s breath still came in gasps.

“I don’t remember the dream, but I doubt it was the latter.”

“You sounded terrified. Can’t you recall anything?”

“I…I don’t know. I called him?”


“Did I say anything else?”

Someone banged on their hotel door. “Security! Everything okay in there?”

Both looked at each other, eyes wide. Slowly, Suzi arose and walked to the entry. Checking the peep hole, she hesitated before unlocking the bolt. Cracking the door, she said, “Yes. Everything is fine. Why?”

“Well, ma’am,” came a voice from the hallway, “someone called the front desk and said they heard screaming.”

Suzi turned her head, looked at Joy, then back through the opening. “Sorry, officer.” She lowered her voice. “My friend tends to have…ah…erotic dreams. It’s a rare condition with some long medical name I can’t pronounce. I’m sorry if she disturbed anyone. Her therapist is working on an experimental treatment, but it still has a few kinks to be smoothed out.”

No response for several seconds. “Well…ah…ma’am, maybe she could try to keep it down? People are trying to sleep.”

“You bet, officer. I’ll make sure she keeps it to a PG-13 rating.”

Want to keep reading? You'll have to buy the book! Here are the Buy Links for Five Steps to Celestia as well as Terry's social media contact information:


1 comment:

  1. Thanks for having me back, again, Rebecca!


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