Monday, August 15, 2011

Guest - Lisa Kessler

Good morning all! Today's guest is Lisa Kessler. Her bio is almost as interesting as her post ;-)


Lisa's Bio: I have always loved to make up stories. My first published work was The Wonders of Unicorn Creek in 6th grade. The 9 page epic was published by my tiny elementary school. Since then I've published short stories in anthologies like: Dead Souls, Ladies of Horror 2009, Hell Hath No Fury, and magazines like: Sinisteria, Horrorfind, Twilight Times, The Writers Hood, Savage Night, The Murder Hole, Behold and Shadowkeepzine.
 My story ”Immortal Beloved” was a finalist for a Bram Stoker award, and my story “The Third King” won second place in Behold’s short story contest.
I’ve completed the first two novels in my Night Trilogy, and the first two novels in my new Moon Series.
I’m thrilled to announce that Entangled Publishing has contracted my entire Night Walker series!!! The first book will be released August 5, 2011!!!


Lisa has given us a thought-provoking, and fascinating blog on music. Enjoy.


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Music and Immortals

Hi everyone –

Thank you Lynda for inviting me to the blog today!

They say music is timeless.  Classical music has lived on for centuries, long after the one who composed the notes on the parchment.  Operas are still performed today without microphone and amplification, so when you walk into an opera house to see Carmen or the Marriage of Figaro, you are seeing the production the same way audiences had watched it since the 1700’s.

I’ve always imagined that would be encouraging for an immortal.

Can you imagine the world changing around you, while you remain unchanged?  I would think immortality would be cool for the first lifetime, but what about after the second or third?  Would you ache for familiar things?

Music is not only timeless, but it also evokes memories.  I can hear Almost Paradise and I instantly feel like I’m back in high school at my prom. 

What would it be like for an immortal?

In Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles, Lestat plays the violin with such accuracy and frenzied precision that it awakens the Queen of the Damned.  So the music not only affected Lestat, but also the oldest vampire who hadn’t moved in over a thousand years.

In my new novel, Night Walker, the hero, Calisto plays the piano with a passion and precise intonation that could only be achieved by lifetimes of practice.  He uses the piano to pour out emotions he can’t share with anyone in the world, because no one knows who or what he truly is.

Here’s a short excerpt of Calisto pouring his heart into his music…

When the soft purr of her car’s engine faded into the distance, Calisto went downstairs and sat down at his grand piano. Playing was one of the few activities of late that helped ease the loneliness plaguing him. The music surrounded him in a calming embrace, like a child wrapped in his mother’s arms. Over the years, he had become a virtuoso, a product of having centuries to practice. In that time, he had memorized countless masterpieces by Chopin, Mozart, and Beethoven, but right now Rachmaninoff’s “Vocalise” poured from his soul, through his fingertips, making the grand piano ring with emotion. The music spoke words he couldn’t recite, and he played with fervor and accuracy only an immortal being could achieve.
Tonight the piano sang, not with the bitter ache of emptiness but with hope and the promise of love. Passion built in the melody, and in his mind he saw her eyes shining as he bent to kiss her lips. He closed his eyes as he played, envisioning her body pressed against his, her warm skin enticing him to hold her tighter. At the final cadence, his hands remained frozen over the keys, suspending the final chord as it echoed through his empty house. When silence crept around him, Calisto rose from the keyboard and made his way to the secret chamber buried deep within the cliff of his beachfront home. He would find her again.
Tomorrow night he would search for Kate Bradley. For the first time in decades, he was anxious for another night.

Music can become their link to the past, as well as a comfort in the future. 

Since music seems like a perfect match for an immortal, I’ve often searched out Vampire musicals, and surprisingly there aren’t very many.  I wish I could have seen Elton John’s Lestat: The Musical, but it didn’t stay on Broadway for long.

I have a friend in England who has devoted the past few years to developing Dracula for a musical stage production.  He even has a cast recording out...
 http://www.amazon.com/Dracula/dp/B000T5MX9W/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1313306587&sr=8-3  and this year Frank Wildhorn, the composer behind Jekyll & Hyde also released a studio recording of Dracula the Musical...  http://www.amazon.com/Dracula-Musical-Studio-Cast-Recording/dp/B000J2AEEQ/ref=pd_sim_m_1  Check out the romance of “Loving you Keeps me Alive”.

So what are your thoughts on the connection between music and immortals?  And did any of you ever get to see Elton John’s Lestat on Broadway?  I’d love to hear from you! 

Lisa






Night Walker Blurb:
He gave up his soul for a second chance to love her…

Two and a half centuries ago, Calisto Terana lost everything when a zealous priest murdered the woman he loved. Now, desperate for another chance to love her, he wants redemption for the mistake that cost her life.


She’s haunted by dreams of her own death…
After catching her fiance with another woman, Kate Bradley returns to San Diego to clear her head. The last thing she needs is romance, but after meeting Calisto she’s drawn to him in ways she doesn’t understand.


They’ve waited in the shadows for centuries…
Calisto has no doubt Kate is the reincarnation of his lost love, but the Fraternidad Del Fuego Santo has a new watcher with dark ambitions of his own. As old enemies reemerge and a new threat arises, the betrayal that enslaved Calisto to the night might destroy the only woman he’s ever loved again.

Night Walker - Available now! http://is.gd/QETE1E
Across the Veil - Available now! http://amzn.to/e98xZo


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-- Lynda Again
What do you think? Is this a fascinating post? Leave a comment for Lisa and let her know your thoughts.

15 comments:

Jacqueline Seewald said...

Hi, Lisa and Lynda,

A very interesting post. I enjoy knowing more about other authors and their writing. Wishing you every success.

john klawitter said...

Authors who write of vampires and other creatures with long life spans tend to view such creatures in the standard human image. They live longer, hence they get lonely. They fall in love and pine for long-dead lovers. They hate, they fear, they are brave or cowardly. I suppose this is because the writers feel the need to reach an audience who might otherwise not understand if a creature was alive but did not have 'human' emotions. It's a bit like the old notion of God, that we created him in our own image. I liked one particular episode of the old Star Trek series where Kirk and his buddies encountered a strange 'mass of somehow connected gaseous particles'...the aliens were repulsed by the earth beings, calling them 'ugly bags of water'. My point (if I have one) might be that I detect a distressing sameness in speculative fiction.

Lynda K. Scott said...

Hi John, I don't know if it's a 'sameness' or an effort to make the creature empathetic to our senses. I living rock (going back to the Star Trek episode with the silicone based lifeform ;D ) that had no motivations that we could understand would just have us figuring out a way to kill it. That episode had us, at the end, sympathizing with the critter since it was only trying to protect its unborn offspring.

Of course, I'm short a few hours of sleep and about a gallon of coffee so I'm probably not making any sense right now ;-P

Lisa Kessler said...

Hi Jacqueline -

Thanks for the good wishes and the comment!

Great to see you!

Lisa :)

Lisa Kessler said...

Hi John -

I get what you're saying, but I think you're assuming that an "immortal" was never human?

My Night Walker was a mortal man and "changed" into an immortal. He still carries all his human emotions, trapped in an unchanging body.

I agree with you if you have a "being" that is immortal they probably wouldn't have human emotions... But for a writer, that would be tough to make sympathetic. Readers want to relate to characters...

I hope that makes sense! :) Thanks for chiming in!

Lisa :)

Lisa Kessler said...

Hi Lynda! *waving*

Thanks for having me on today! :)

I get what you're saying and I agree... As readers we have to be able to relate to a character or being on some level in order to empathize with their plight...

Lisa :)

Chris Marie Green/Christine Cody/Crystal Green said...

Hey, Lisa! I wish I could've seen LESTAT, too, just out of curiosity. Did you see DRACULA several years ago when they were developing it at the La Jolla Playhouse for Broadway? (It didn't last long there, either.)

Victoria said...

Excellent post. It makes perfect sense to me that immortals would pour their feelings into music. Wish I had seen Lestat.
Tweeted: http://twitter.com/#!/Jovial_1/status/103173072475013120

Cori C said...

Hi, Lisa! I love how deeply you think about immortality and I bet it shows in Night Walker! You're right, there would be so many things changing around you that music could be a great comfort and a strong link to the past. Well done!

Lisa Kessler said...

Hi Chris -

At RWA National I saw posters for Lestat the musical and was immediately curious about the show... I wish I could find someone who saw it... LOL

I missed Dracula when it was here... Was it a musical?

Thanks for commenting!!

Lisa :)

Lisa Kessler said...

Hi Victoria -

Thanks for commenting! :)

Maybe we'll find a commenter who saw Lestat and can tell us about it! :)

Lisa

Lisa Kessler said...

Hi Cori -

I'm glad you enjoyed the blog! :)

I hope you'll like the book even more! LOL

Thanks for commenting!

Lisa :)

Linda Andrews said...

Hi Lisa,

I liked the post and loved the except. The book sounds fascinating. You said it is part of a series, will all the books take place in San Diego?

Lisa Kessler said...

Hi Linda -

Book 1 & 4 take place in San Diego... :) The next book, Night Demon has a little in San Diego but most of it takes place in the Yucatan jungle near Cancun Mexico...

Thanks for stopping by! I'm glad you enjoyed the excerpt!

Lisa :)

Helga Numan said...

When speaking about immortal and supernatural creatures and music which atmosphere corresponds their spirits, I can only think about OST of Queen of Damned I wonder how they managed to compile a whole album with this kind of music, but it's just perfect. It's dark, mysterious and so intense.