by Molly Jo Realy @MollyJoRealy

Beckie and I had lunch today. It was a celebration. I finished NOLA and she got a book contract. Her publisher is looking at a three-book deal. Not bad for a newbie, right?!

The Astros won the World Series tonight. That makes me happy because I’m not really a Dodgers fan, and any team that beats the Yankees deserves a true shot at the ring.

I started writing CENTRAL today. Mostly because it’s November first and I don’t want to miss out on NaNoWriMo. And believe it or not, I picked up two small editing projects for the month.

I still can’t get my head around the fact I’m done writing NOLA. At least the first draft. It what everybody told me it would be. The squeals of excitement. The pride. The thrill of email responses from the editor and almost-agent and alpha readers. And when the edits happen, I’m okay with it. Because I have this version, the first version. And I’m really happy with that.

My brain is absolute mush and absolute electricity. I miss Rain and Josie, and yet they’re right here. I can’t wait for the Swarm to meet them.

One of my trusted Swarm Team members is Lindsay Reine. Girl, you have been a font of information and creativity. NOLA wouldn’t be half as genuine without your input. Thank you.

I had asked Lindsay to write a blurb on Halloween in New Orleans, and because I was unable to post it yesterday, here it is. Enjoy!

Halloween in New Orleans

Ahhhhh October, one of my most favorite times of the year. Generally the weather starts to get cooler, we have Saints and LSU Football, the humidity does down, people are happier (everyone is happier when they are not sweating), and it’s festival time!

I know New Orleans is famous for Mardi Gras, and we love carnival time, but did you know we have year round amazing festivals? The Po-Boy festival is a huge hit, oyster festival, tons of music festivals, the list goes on. In my opinion, the most pleasant festivals are held during the Louisiana winters. I say “Louisiana winter” because we don’t actually have a winter, we have a few weeks with slightly cooler weather and we love it.

But this is October, y’all know what happens in October? Halloween!

You have all heard the tales of the spirits and spooks that haunt the South. The superstitious, voodoo, magic, the high Priestesses, the casket girls, the souls that suffered gory deaths and the happy haunts have their stories told more frequently this time of year.

You see, here in New Orleans, the city comes to life and is energized by the curious visitors and all knowing locals speaking the words of old and suspicious tales of the new. When you get goosebumps here, it is not from the cold, but more of a reaction to the eerie feeling that something unseen is present. If you are looking for an intense “other world” experience, your curiosity will be more than fulfilled here.

All cities have their fair share of psychics who want to tell you the future. Not only does New Orleans have those, it also has people trained in the art of reading tea leaves to tell your story. This is intriguing to many as they say, you can see the tea leaves form shapes in the bottom of the tea cup. The historic Bourbon Street is no stranger to the strange as many have reported unusual events happening that can only be explained by calling it a haunting. Apparently the street is not only known for its alcoholic “spirits” consumption but for its resident “spirits” as well.

It’s been said that a ghost can follow you home, who is willing to visit New Orleans to find out?

And Frankly, My Dear . . . : That’s all she wrote!

Five Things Friday: CENTRAL
NOLA : The Beginning
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