Tag Archives: Tanka

Poetry Friday

28 Sep

Hello, everyone! Welcome to my blog.

 

My plan was to release my new book, Son of the Serpent late summer. Well, things don’t always work out the way we plan them. The formatting is taking a while and I am now looking at a publication date at the beginning of November.

However, Son of the Serpent is available for pre-order for only 99¢ (It’s the least I can do). If you were planning to purchase the eBook please take advantage of this pre-order price.

Meanwhile, I did finish the back cover copy which I will share with you today. Please feel free to give me your opinions on it in the comment section.

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Illustration for Son of the Serpent by Scarlett Fawn

Fall and Try are this week’s prompt words chosen by Colleen Chesebro ~ The Fairy Whisperer.

*The catch is that we can only use the synonyms to these words in our poems.

Colleen hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called, Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday Poetry Challenge every Tuesday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your Haiku, Tanka, Haibun or Cinquain poem. She is an author and poet, and also does book reviews and so much more on her blog. Be sure to check it out.

Stumble once or twice

Does the world end if you fail?

If you love your art

Have the courage to venture

Let the writer in you win

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Blurb (Back Cover Copy):

 

In Son of the Serpent, award-winning author Vashti Quiroz-Vega crafts another fascinating glimpse into the dark, compelling world of fallen angels and demons, revealing more about their untold stories.

 

The war in heaven might be over, but the ambitions of the fallen angel Lilith reach far across the roots of history. Will there be a being powerful enough to stop her evil influence before the destruction of mankind?

 

Dracúl knows he is the son of Satan, but the rest of his memory has been taken from him. Alone and frightened, he awakens in a forest, beginning a quest to piece together who he is. The world he encounters is cruel, but he yearns to belong and find companionship. With each step he takes, another missing piece of his memory falls into place, revealing a truth that is ever more troubling . . .

 

A truth that will turn his quest for meaning into one fueled by the hot-blooded thirst for revenge. A truth that leads him to Lilith, the most wicked and ruthless of fallen angels and one he soon will have every reason to hate. His quest will consume him, perhaps ruin his life, but somehow Dracúl is determined to find both belonging and vengeance—to be good, in spite of his evil nature and the dark secrets that haunt him every step of the way.

Son of the Serpent-book-novel-Vashti Quiroz Vega-author-Poetry_Friday-Tanka-Japan

Available for pre-order, Monday 10/01/2018

Let me know what you thought of my book blurb.

Did it intrigue you?

Have a Happy Friday!

Preorder Son of the Serpent for only 99¢!

 

Poetry Friday ~ Exemplary & Sadness

7 Sep

Hi, everyone!

 

I’m back from my two weeks in Japan and I must say I miss it already. The Japanese people are remarkable. From the moment we arrived at Narita International Airport we felt welcomed. The airport, train station, restaurant and hotel employees as well as passers by went out of there way to help us with any issue, sometimes before we even got the chance to ask for help.

 

Although the country is packed with people everything ran smoothly. The trains and buses were always on time, restaurants were never too full, the streets were clean although there were no garbage cans––anywhere. We learned to carry a plastic bag in our backpacks to store garbage while out and about. On escalators everyone stood on the left, so that if anyone wanted to walk up the steps they could come up the right side. People formed lines and walk down on the left side of a stairway and up on the right side, so that no one is ever in the way or in danger of colliding with someone else. People entered the trains in an orderly fashion and if the train was extra full the conductor would come over and assist by pushing the people in tight with his gloved hands, like you would push down the clothes in an overstuffed suitcase before just barely getting that zipper closed.

 

Cab, Uber and bus drivers thanked us for allowing them to drive us around. We never saw a fight or an argument anywhere. Although drinking alcohol is allowed at anytime we never saw a single drunk walking the streets. There was no yelling or cussing. Everyone seemed so kind and courteous to one another, it was surreal at times.

 

I fell in love with Japanese fashion. Well, the women’s fashion style. The men mostly wore black suits and white shirts. In the train station during the morning work rush you’d see a sea of white shirts and black pants. Even the school age boys wore black pants and white shirts. The women were another story. First, we had to ask ourselves if there were any ugly Japanese women? If there were, they must have stayed indoors the entire time we were there. The Japanese women we saw were beautiful and refined. Their style was feminine, colorful and elegant in an understated way. Honestly, I felt a bit self-conscious walking around in my jeans, T-shirt and sneakers. And why didn’t they sweat? Our first couple of days in Japan the temperature was in the upper nineties. My niece, who lives there, told us it was a record high. The moment I walked out of the airport beads of sweat began to form over my upper lip and it wasn’t long before we were all covered in perspiration. Yet, I never saw a Japanese woman dripping in sweat. They walked by in their regal way, looking immaculate in their perfect outfits without a hair out of place and dry as powder.

 

I don’t think the word “elderly” applies to the seventy and eighty-something year olds in Japan. Not when they zipped by you on their bicycles. When we visited the shrines in Kyoto we climbed 500+ steps up a mountain. As I struggled up the last twenty-something steps, a group of men and women clearly in their seventies or eighties zoomed right past me to the top. To say I was shocked is an understatement. Seeing the vitality of their older generation was a testament to their healthy lifestyle.

 

After a week of living among these people, my brother and I came up with a theory. They’re not from here. They’re an elite race of aliens from another planet or dimension chosen to live on Earth to show us mere humans how we should live. They are here to lead by example. How could these perfect beings be human? Human beings are not perfect. We make mistakes, we get angry and yell sometimes, we get tired and we sweat!

Torii Gates-Japan-Poetry_Friday-Tanka-Vashti Quiroz Vega-Japanese-Vashti Q

Torii Gates (Kyoto, Japan)

You may not believe

but they do walk among us

these perfect beings

from birth to birth they go with

no proper place for sorrow

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Check out my Instagram for more pictures. (Click on photo)

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Torii Gates (Kyoto, Japan)

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Exemplary and Sadness are this week’s prompt words chosen by Colleen Chesebro ~ The Fairy Whisperer. *The catch is that we can only use the synonyms to these words in our poems.

Colleen hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called, Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday Poetry Challenge every Tuesday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your Haiku, Tanka, Haibun or Cinquain poem. She is an author and poet, and also does book reviews and so much more on her blog. Be sure to check it out.

Poetry Friday ~ Love & Time (Synonyms)

17 Aug

Hello, everyone! Welcome!

 

I don’t know if you’ve heard the news about the ‘Red Tide’ algae affecting southwest Florida, but what’s going on here is a real tragedy.

Toxic algae, called ‘red tide’ are killing the marine life in the southwest coast of Florida. Sea creatures have been washing up on our shores. The situation is so bad that our governor has declared a state of emergency.

This kind of thing upsets me beyond belief. Scientists are trying to figure out how to get rid of these tiny creatures and there has been some wild speculations as to how they had come to be. Well, I have a theory of my own. I believe The Deepwater Horizon oil spill (BP oil spill) in the Gulf of Mexico, April 20, 2010 is one of many things to blame. Nature always tries to protect itself and that includes marine life. All the garbage and oil in the water have killed many aquatic creatures and vegetation. Maybe, some of the gulf’s algae mutated into what are now known as ‘red-tide algae’ to protect itself long ago and maybe they plague us for disrespecting their environment. Yes, I know this reads like something out of an M. Night Shyamalan movie, but it makes perfect sense to me. When a life form is placed in a toxic environment it will either die or change to adapt to its new surroundings. Only this algae has mutated into a monstrous form that kills off every other creature around.

Now, I know that it is a natural phenomenon, but the exact cause or combination of factors that result in a red tide outbreak are not necessarily known. I also know that this phenomenon has occurred since ancient times. Biblical scholars and early marine biologists of the late nineteenth century postulated that the first plague of the Exodus story, the blood color of the Nile, might have been an outbreak of Red Tide. But who’s to say that pollution, oil spills and other unnatural disturbances in the water doesn’t have something to do with a Red Tide outbreak occurring.

Anyway, here’s an article from the Washington Post you can read for yourself:

Florida’s governor this week made official what residents of southwest Florida already knew: The bloom of toxic algae that has darkened gulf waters is an emergency. The red tide has made breathing difficult for locals, scared away tourists, and strewn popular beaches with the stinking carcasses of fish, eels, porpoises, turtles, manatees and one 26-foot whale shark. Continue reading . . . 

Mother Nature’s Lament

In an age of greed

Seas once clean now choke with oil

My darling sea life

Leaving your bodies on shore

As red tides lap my beaches

red tide-toxic_algae-Florida-Poetry_Friday-Vashti Q-The Writer Next Door-Vashti Quiroz Vega-marine_life

 

Love and Time are this week’s prompt words chosen by Colleen Chesebro ~ The Fairy Whisperer. *The catch is that we can only use the synonyms to these words in our poems.

Colleen hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called, Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday Poetry Challenge every Tuesday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your Haiku, Tanka, Haibun or Cinquain poem. She is an author and poet, and also does book reviews and so much more on her blog. Be sure to check it out.

Thank you for visiting!

Poetry Friday ~ Congregate & Passion

10 Aug

Hello, everyone! Welcome to my blog!

 

Today I wrote a two sentence Horror/Romance story and a Haiku. I’m not sure if the combination of these can be called a Haibun. I also wrote a Tanka. I hope you enjoy.

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Sprint Turned a Wrecked Car Into a Mangled Emoji for This ‘Don’t Text and Drive’ Sculpture.

Each night on the stroke of midnight her young, dead husband would text her. His final message, the one found beside the body at the crash site, read, ‘Stop texting me. I’m driving’.

Final rendezvous

Fire ignited your obsession

A text snuffed it out

On a less tragic note . . . 

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Soft rosy petals

Your lips pressing against mine

Under a blanket of stars

In a place where there is love

Rendezvous in the moonlight

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Congregate and Passion are this week’s prompt words chosen by Colleen Chesebro ~ The Fairy Whisperer. *The catch is that we can only use the synonyms to these words in our poems.

Colleen hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called, Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday Poetry Challenge every Tuesday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your Haiku, Tanka, Haibun or Cinquain poem. She is an author and poet, and also does book reviews and so much more on her blog. Be sure to check it out.

Thanks for the visit and have a happy Friday!

Don’t text and drive. 

Haiku Friday – Home & Free

1 Jun

Haiku_Friday-Poetry-The Writer Next Door-Vashti Quiroz Vega-Vashti Q-The Fall of Lilith-novel-Fantasy_Angels_Series-gadreel-fallen_angels-demons

 

Home and Free are this week’s prompt words chosen by Ronovan Hester of Ronovan Writes.

Ron hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called Ronovan Writes Weekly Haiku Poetry Prompt Challenge every Monday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your haiku poem. He is an author and poet and also does author interviews and much more on his blog. Be sure to check it out. Read Ron’s Haiku Prompt Challenge Guidelines for more information.

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Gadreel’s Lamentation

Nefarious deeds

Got me exiled from heaven

Now on earth I roam

Hiraeth beckons my soul

But I can’t ever go home

I’d gladly give up

the freedom earth allows me

for one day back home

Where flowers sing lullabies

and leaves dance all aquiver

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Floraison Scene Illustration by Jeff Brown for The Fall of Lilith

 

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Haiku Friday – Beat & Party

27 Apr

 

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Let us celebrate

the diamantine splendor

of this vibrant night

It’s not the moon, I tell you

It’s your smile that shines so bright

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Beautiful sketch of Gal Gadot by Chris Wahl (Click on image to see more of Chris’ work on Instagram)

Beat and Party are this week’s prompt words chosen by Ronovan Hester of Ronovan Writes.

Ron hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called Ronovan Writes Weekly Haiku Poetry Prompt Challenge every Monday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your haiku poem. He is an author and poet and also does author interviews and much more on his blog. Be sure to check it out. Read Ron’s Haiku Prompt Challenge Guidelines for more information.

 

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Haiku Friday – Zen & Noise

23 Feb

Hi everyone! Happy Haiku Friday!

 

Zen and Noise are this week’s prompt words chosen by Ronovan Hester of Ronovan Writes.

Ron hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called Ronovan Writes Weekly Haiku Poetry Prompt Challenge every Monday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your haiku poem. He is an author and poet and also does author interviews and much more on his blog. Be sure to check it out. Read Ron’s Haiku Prompt Challenge Guidelines for more information.

 

I struggled with this week’s prompt words, especially the word “Zen”. I tried to look for a synonym but it doesn’t have one (what?). Needless to say, I had to go way outside the box for this one. I looked up the definition for zen to find some inspiration and this is what I found.

ZenChinese Ch’an. Buddhism. A Mahayana movement, introduced into China in the 6th century a.d. and into Japan in the 12th century, that emphasizes enlightenment for the student by the most direct possible means, accepting formal studies and observances only when they form part of such means.

The above definition might as well have been written in Mandarin or Japanese. ↑

Then the chaps at Cambridge gave me a simpler definition.

Zen: a religion that is a form of Buddhism developed in Japan. What is zen: relaxed and not worrying about things that you cannot change.

That was easier to understand, but I still found it challenging to come up with a poem with these words. So, I pretended to be a Buddhist Monk, while writing this poem and came up with a Tanka. I hope you like it.

Zen-Poetry-Buddhism-enso cat-Tsun Ming-Haiku_Friday-tanka-Vashti Quiroz Vega-VashtiQ-The Writer Next Door-poem

 

I leap the world’s ties

And sit among the white clouds

To hear the earth’s noise

without my usual armor

coming ‘tween me and nature

(‘I leap the world’s ties, And sit among the white clouds’ = relaxed, not worrying = Zen)

(‘To hear the earth’s noise without my usual armor coming ‘tween me and nature’= enlightenment = Zen)

Zen-Poetry-Buddhism-enso cat-Tsun Ming-Haiku_Friday-tanka-Vashti Quiroz Vega-VashtiQ-The Writer Next Door-poem

Enso Cat by Tsun Ming

Enjoy your Friday and weekend!

Haiku Friday – Quick & Slip

16 Feb

Hello, everyone. Welcome.

I’m sure by now most people have heard the news about the “Florida School Shooting”. For those of you who have not heard, I will give you a quick summary of what happened.

On Valentine’s Day (2-14-18) a heavily armed, 19 year old man, killed at least 17 people with an AR-15 assault rifle at his former high school in Parkland, Fl.. It isn’t known yet why he did it. We may never know his reasons, because the gunman has a history of mental illness.

Needless to say, this is a horribly sad and tragic event. The fact that it took place so close to home make it all the more disturbing for me. So many lives ended–just like that. It’s so senseless. Could this have been prevented?

If you’d like more information: The New York Times 

When I wrote these poems I thought of the victims, in particular the kids and their loved ones left behind to mourn.

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Illustration by Beatriz Martin Vidal (Beatriz – DeviantArt)

Grieving

Don’t cry, I’m not dead

I have only slipped away

into the next room

You’ll see me again

And we’ll laugh at our goodbyes

But time is too slow

for those who just sit and wait

So please turn to life again

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Illustration by Beatriz Martin Vidal (Beatriz – DeviantArt)

Quick and Slip are this week’s prompt words chosen by Ronovan Hester of Ronovan Writes.

Ron hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called Ronovan Writes Weekly Haiku Poetry Prompt Challenge every Monday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your haiku poem. He is an author and poet and also does author interviews and much more on his blog. Be sure to check it out. Read Ron’s Haiku Prompt Challenge Guidelines for more information.

Haiku Friday – Press & Touch

19 Jan

Hi everyone! A very warm welcome to my blog!

 

Press and Touch are this week’s prompt words chosen by Ronovan Hester of Ronovan Writes.

Ron hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called Ronovan Writes Weekly Haiku Poetry Prompt Challenge every Monday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your haiku poem. He is an author and poet and also does author interviews and much more on his blog. Be sure to check it out. Read Ron’s Haiku Prompt Challenge Guidelines for more information.

My inspiration for this week’s prompt words is Rogue, a member of the X-Men, which goes to show that inspiration can come from anywhere. Here’s a little background on her, for those of you who are not Marvel fans.

Rogue is part of a subspecies of humans called mutants, who are born with superhuman abilities. Rogue has the involuntary ability to absorb and sometimes also remove the memories, physical strength, and superpowers of anyone she touches. Therefore, Rogue considers her powers to be a curse. For most of her life, she limited her physical contact with others, including her on-off love interest, Gambit.

Continue reading . . . 

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ROGUE by Selene Regener (Selenada – DeviantART)

The Untouchable Rogue (X-Men)

I am much affected

for I can’t lay hands on you

My touch would kill you

Why go on living?

Life’s a hollow word for me

without your caress

Fear leads me to shun your warmth

In decrepit gloves I touch

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Gambit & Rogue (X-Men)

Have a happy Friday!

Haiku Friday – Broken & Over

24 Nov

 

Hello everyone! Today, I have an interesting guest on my blog. Her name is Gadreel and she is one of the characters in my new novel, The Fall of Lilith. She has written a poem for us but before we get to that I have a few questions I’d like to ask her.

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Illustration by Luis Royo (Click on image for website)

Character Interview

Vashti:

Hello Gadreel! Welcome. I’m so happy you could join us today.

Gadreel:

Greetings. I am delighted to be here.

Vashti:

Let’s get right to it, okay? Tell us about your home, Floraison.

Gadreel: (She frowns. She gives me a wounded look and then lowers her eyes to the floor)

Floraison is no longer my home, for I was cast out along with Lilith, Lucifer and the rest of the rebel angels.

Vashti:

Oh––yes, I’m sorry. (I squirm on my seat) If it’s too difficult for you to talk about it, it’s––

Gadreel:

Apologies. It is for this reason I was invited, so I shall answer your question. Although, there are no words to fully describe Floraison, none that humans can understand. I shall do my best. Firstly, there are three realms of Heaven: Heaven Most High where God resides, Metá Heaven, and Floraison, the lowest realm of Heaven where God chose to place his angels. Different dimensions separate these realms and only God travels between them as He pleases.

There was no need for a sun, moon or stars to give Floraison light. God’s splendor lit the lowest realm, and the skies were beautiful beyond compare. There was no true darkness where the angels lived. In Floraison’s unit of time there was brillante, when the light was at its most intense and nightglow when at its dimmest.

There were many trees and meadows adorned with colorful flowers that emitted fragrances evoking happiness and vigor. Magnificent creatures abounded, large and small––perfect in every way and pleasing to the senses. Some of these creatures were prototypes for beings God created on different planets, and others were unique to Floraison.

The River of Life, a pure river with crystalline healing waters, flowed between realms and proceeded from God’s throne room.

(She stopped and gazed at me with doleful eyes that made my heart ache a little)

Vashti:

It’s okay, Gadreel. I think we get the picture––Floraison is a celestial paradise. You mentioned that there was no true darkness in heaven, so what was it like the first time you experienced night on Earth?

Gadreel: (She shivers and wraps her arms around herself)

When I fell from heaven I landed in a hot area of grasses and small dispersed trees. The sunlight was harsh and glaring and singed my angelic skin. There was no shade or area to escape from it. The heat enveloped me and the air was so dense I had to drag it into my lungs. I hated this new environment, but nothing prepared me for night.

It was like I disappeared. I could not see my hands in front of my face. It was like not existing, but yet living. I felt like God no longer saw me and that made my heart very heavy. I never felt farther from my home.

The grasslands came to life at night with unfamiliar noises. I heard a sharp, thrilling call overhead, the leaping and bounding of fleet-footed creatures avoiding predators on the ground, and all manner of growls, clicks, and hoots. An eerie, cold sensation crept into my bones. I curled into a tight ball and trembled in the darkness.

Vashti:

That sounds awful. I won’t be alone in the dark any time soon. (Awkward pause) Gadreel, did you ever see God?

Gadreel:

In Floraison there are golden double doors that opened to a portal that lead to Metá Heaven where God’s presence could be reached in His Throne Room. Only by His expressed permission could one cross this portal. I was never given permission to enter. Michael, who had entered the hall, said it was aglow with the most exquisite light ever seen. But in order to truly see God angels must elevate to Heaven Most High and that’s a difficult process.

Vashti:

You’re obviously remorseful for joining Lilith and rebelling against God and the holy angels, so why did you do it?

Gadreel: (She swallowed hard and looked down)

I never felt rebellious in my heart. I loved God and my heavenly home. Lilith was my best friend and she is a powerful influencer. She made me feel that I needed to be loyal to her––and I was also a bit afraid of her, of what she would do if I did not follow her. She also told me it was the only way for me to be with Samael and I believed this. I loved Samael and he joined Lilith and Lucifer in their rebellion. I wanted to go wherever he went, even if it meant that I would end up in hell.

Vashti:

So much has happened since the war in heaven and your fall from grace. How have you changed?

Gadreel:

I am much stronger and confident in my abilities now. I know I have done many wrongs for which I must make amends. I will seek God’s forgiveness, although I know I can never return to my home in heaven. I shall no longer ally myself with Lilith, Lucifer or Samael. I have new allies in the Animal Kingdom, for I have the ability to understand and communicate with them. However, I shall always miss Floraison.

 

Homesickness pulls at my heart

Tossed down from Heaven

I lie broken on the earth

I know in my mind

It is not over for you see

Although the fall split my spine

I shall survive this

Long enough to make amends

I don’t belong here

but I am homesick

for a home I shall not see

Home needs a whole heart

My heart’s a thousand pieces

so homesick am I

Earth shall never be my home

I am wishing for heaven

Gadreel-fallen_angel-The Fall of Lilith-Haiku_Friday-Poetry-The Writer Next Door-Vashti Q-Vashti Quiroz Vega-fantasy angels series

“There was no sun in Floraison to torture us. We had brillantes, a time of divine light, which was like the warmth of God’s smile. Here on earth, we have to endure days of glaring, fiery light, which stings our bodies and perturbs our minds. In Floraison, we had nightglows when light dimmed to a soft glow, which reminded us that God was still near. Here, we have night––the absence of light when we are left on our own. I miss our home.”

~Gadreel

Broken and Over are this week’s prompt words chosen by Ronovan Hester of Ronovan Writes.

Ron hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called Ronovan Writes Weekly Haiku Poetry Prompt Challenge every Monday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your haiku poem. He is an author and poet and also does author interviews and much more on his blog. Be sure to check it out. Read Ron’s Haiku Prompt Challenge Guidelines for more information.

Lilith, the main character from my novel, The Fall of Lilith was also interviewed by Lisa Burton (Robot Girl) of Lisa Burton Radio | Entertaining Stories. You can read that interview, here.

Enjoy the weekend, everyone!