July 24 is Tequila Day. Mexicans and lots of others love to celebrate this drink! In the US tequila means Margarita a frozen and cooling summer drink meant for outdoor cafes and verandas shaded by trees. It's a beach drink.
There is no real story about how this drink came to be, but some people think it was invented by a Dallas socialite vacationing at Christmas in Acapulco in 1948. It's a tequila version of a "Daisy" which is made with brandy. The Spanish word for “Daisy” is “Margarita”.
In any case, this popular drink, made with tequila, orange liqueur, and lime juice, plus the trademark salt rim, will bring a touch of the tropics to any get-together.
Cheers! (And don’t lose that shaker of salt!)
Drink Like an Egyptian
Ancient Egyptian Beer was the Drink of Gods, Priests and Workers
Beer was the staple drink of ancient Egyptian workers and craftsmen – wine was for rich people.It was used as pay for the workers o government projects, brought to parties in large gift jars. It helped in the celebration of religious festivals.
Ancient Egyptians even revered ritual drunkeness as a way of entering religious ecstasy.
Egyptian gods and goddesses, especially Hathor, goddess of love and “Mistress of Drunkenness.”received regular supplies of beer as offerings –
Ancient Egyptian beer DOES taste different from the beer to which we are accustomed.
It had a lower alcohol content 3-4% as opposed to
5% had wild yeast as an agent, grain or date sugar and no hops. It also contained chaff and had to be filtered before drinking.
Want to know more? Here's a full article here.
Last week we spoke to Assaph Mehr. This week we'll meet his protagonist Felix. First, here are some excellent reviews of his award-winning Murder in Absentia
"Hardcore Historical Fantasy - Felix the Fox is Sherlock Holmes in Ancient Times"
-- Jonathan Maas, author of City of Gods - Hellenica
“Mehr’s imagined world based on ancient Rome feels at once familiar and dreamlike. In Egretia, magic is real and potentially deadly. While rival incantatores have been banned from calling up competing winds to speed ferries across the bay – they’ve drowned too many innocent sailors – the powers of magic appear to have fallen into malevolent hands. Failed incantator Felix the Fox is investigating a mysterious death in a growing atmosphere of menace. I can’t help thinking the idea of Death by Magic might be closer to the mindset of some of the ancient world than our modern rationality.”
-- Ruth Downie, Author of the Medicus Roman mysteries series
"Mehr is a master alchemist, blending the real and surreal on a captivating flight of fantasy."
-- Cynthia Celmer
"This book gave me a 'book-hangover' - I could not get my head out of the world of Felix for days after finishing it! I hope that there will be more stories coming, of Felix's past and future. I like authors that create real human characters"
-- R.M., Israel
“Finished Murder In Absentia twice now. A truly remarkable story which draws you in and makes it so you never want to leave.”
-- Fuchsia Carter, UK
“For a history buff like me, it was the perfect blend of historical trivia and good old-fashioned murder mystery. A sheer delight to read.”
-- W. Klijn., Australia
Virtual FantasyCon 2016
· 1st place - Favourite Dark Fantasy Book
· 1st place - Favourite Dark Fantasy Author
· 2nd place - Favourite Urban Fantasy Book
· 2nd place - Favourite Urban Fantasy Author
· 3rd place – Favourite Fantasy Series
1st place – Indie Books Worth The Read (https://www.goodreads.com/list/show/37072.Self_Pub_or_Indie_Books_Worth_the_Read)
1. Go ahead and introduce yourself.
Ave ombinus. My name is Spurius Vulpius Felix, also known as Felix the Fox. I am what is known in your world as a private detective, though I specialise in cases that have a magical aspect. Well, cases that have a magical aspect that the client would like to keep away from the authorities. My discretion is assured.
2.Tell us where and when were you born.
I was born in the city of Egretia thirty-four years ago. Egretia is the best city our world has ever known. From what I know of your world through Assaph, he says it’s remarkably similar to your ancient ‘Rome’ and ‘Alexandria’.
3. Tell us about where you grew up.
Egretia is a bustling mega-polis. Our world’s largest city – and we are expanding our influence and reach.
I grew up on the less affluent side, though not the slums. My childhood was typical, unremarkable. My adulthood was different. I was accepted to the Collegium Incantatorum to study the magia, though through unfortunate family circumstances I was ejected when I could no longer pay tuition.
I a set of twists of the Fates could dream about, I became a detective. My earlier, albeit aborted, education has led me to the niche market of dealing with (mostly small-time) cases of magical misdemeanours. Where my career picked up is where the books begin.
4. How would you describe yourself?
In the best of terms. The trick is to get others to use those terms too.
5. Past/ present relationships? How did they affect you?
I’m not quite ready to talk about those.
6. What are you obsessed with?
Despite what Assaph may have led you to believe, I am not obsessed with food, fish sauce, or free meals in general. It’s just that, growing up where and how I did, one does tend to appreciate a hot meal.
Neither am I obsessed with money. I just like to be paid at the end of the day, same as everyone else.
7. How do your beliefs make life better for yourself and the people you care about?
I am not sure about beliefs, but my actions do. I solve people’s problems. Whether it’s lost magical ring, a curse from a business rival, or some uniquely unorthodox murders that need to be kept sub rosa, those who employ my services walk away satisfied, with something less to worry about.
8. Biggest fear?
Life is too short to dwell on those. Live by facing your fears, or it’s no life at all.
9. What line will you never cross?
I’ve been around and seen too much, to know that morals are more fluid than people would like to admit. Often, the more a person preaches about morals, the more twisted his version of them becomes, and the more skeletons are in his closet.
That said, I do have my standards. I will not hurt an innocent if I can avoid it.
10. What is the best thing that ever happened to you? The worst?
The best thing was meeting Helena. The worst was losing her.
But that is a story for another time.
11. Most embarrassing thing that ever happened to you?
Err… there was that one case… That young girl was completely not what I expected.
I’ll let you read that for yourself.
12. Biggest secret?
Why do I keep getting this question in public interviews? Do people in your world understand what ‘secret’ even means?
If you insist on an answer… Sometime I put a little olive oil on my sandal-straps. It keeps them from chafing.
13. What is your current goal?
To get Assaph to start paying me royalties for my memoirs. So far, he has been publishing my stories in your world, but claims that there is no money in, that it’s purely a work of love.
Angel Ramon, our next author describes himself this way
1.Who are you as a person? (brief bio paragraph)
I’m in my middle twenties, reside in Puerto Rico by some of most beautiful beaches, and I’m a total sci-fi/video game freak. I used to reside in New York, but decided to come to live in my homeland in search for a more peaceful environment. I’m a huge baseball fan and when I’m not writing I love going on high risk adventures such as the rainforest or the beach to catch huge waves.
2. How long have you been a writer?
I been a writer since I was in Junior High, but I only started professionally last year.
3. Are you Traditionally or Indie published? If not yet, what are you considering?
I’m Indie Published as I find the most freedom for creativity
4. What writers inspired you? Favorite Authors?
I don’t have a particular author that inspired me, rather just my imagination since I was a kid. As for favorite authors I love Ian Fleming.
5. What is your book/series about (elevator speech or quick tweet post)
My sci-fi series, The Thousand Years War is about four regular humans who get thrown into a virtual world and they have to save the world from getting destroyed by events that take place in a virtual rendition. Where anything that happens there happens on Earth and there will be no explanation on why it happened on mother Earth.
6. What is the setting and genre?
The setting varies between NYC, the Arctic Circle, Space, the 1800’s, medieval times, Hollywood and the Himalayas. However all of the settings are located in the virtual world or the virtual rendition of Earth.
7. Who is your favorite character from your book and why?
My favorite character from my book would have to be Glooba Emperor, the final bad guy in the book. That’s because the emperor reminds me of a very hard boss battle I had to beat in a PC game I still played today called Duke Nukem 3D.
8. What character is most like you?
The character that is most like me would have to be the one that has my name because I wrote him to be a leader just like I am in real life. In fact all my characters are almost like their real life counterparts.
9. If you had a supernatural power, what would it be?
Interesting enough my character has such a power in the book where he could communicate with the other side and he can see dead spirits which is the power I would like to have.
10. Would you say your book has a message or underlying theme? What is it?
Yes, mediums are rather powerful people if they use their gift of talking with the other side correctly.
11. How are you marketing your book?
I try to do posts once in a while talking about the characters and their traits, give behind the scenes information about the book on my facebook page for the book, and whenever I get a review I show it off to the world.
12. Is there one person past or present you would meet and why?
I would like to meet my grandmother from my mother’s side that died when I was seven. She seems to be a wise woman based on what my mother told me about her and she might have had a spiritual connection just like I do.
13. A wonderful thing has happened! Hollywood wants to make a movie of your book! You get to pick the actors & actresses. You want________________for your lead characters.
For my main character I would go with Tom Cruise For his girlfriend Maria I would go with Kate Beckinsale For Dayvon I would go with Will Smith For Luis the fourth man in the group I would pick Sylvester Stallone if he wasn’t so old lol
14. What music do you hear (what songs) remind you of your story?
I like to hear a lot of rock or varying groups as it gets my juices flowing when writing the story.
15. What Favorite foods
Favorite foods would be Pizza, Hamburgers, Pulled Pork and anything fried.
16. What makes you laugh/cry?
What makes me laugh would be a extremely funny meme on social media and what would make me cry is losing someone close to me.
17. What do you want written on your head stone and why?
I would like to have written, “One of the greatest Puerto Rican sci-fi writers that ever lived.” Reason is not many Puerto Ricans are into scifi or speculative fiction.
18. Other than writing do you have any hobbies?
I love to play video games especially PC First-Person Shooters, but also I love to work around the house finding ways to improve it.
19. What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
Honestly I’m not a TV person, I spend more time writing and working on my hobbies so I really don’t watch television. When I do though it’s mostly sports such as baseball or football.
20. If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?
That is a good question that I honestly can really answer since being a writer was something I always wanted to be since youth.
21. What are you working on right now?
I’m working on a LitRPG spin off of The Thousand Years War series since I love video games, I thought why not mix both worlds of sci-fi and video games into one.
22. What future plans do you have in writing?
I have many books on the horizon, so I will be one busy man. Mostly science fiction, but I will be mixing in a Historical Fiction and political thrillers on occasion.
23. What links or website do you have? List them below.
Link to my books on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B01FNLAJL0
Link to my Facebook page for the book: https://www.facebook.com/thousandyearswar/
Link to my writing group, The Hybrid Nation: https://www.hybridnationrevolution.com/
Link to The Hybrid Nation on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/hybridnationrevolution/
Link to my Twitter: https://twitter.com/puertorico05971
Here is the blurb of the book The Thousand Years War:
Video game nerds rejoice, this book reads like a video game on steroids! Tag along four people who enter a video game environment that has no reset button and death is permanent. Four people in Brooklyn N.Y. who know little about each other and backgrounds that could not be any more different. A normal winter day for these four regular joes will turn into a full-fledged adventure that will determine the fate of the Earth with one twist. That twist is that there is a virtual world that looks, smells and feels like Earth and whatever happens in this virtual world happens on Earth, A great evil has decided to use this world for it's purpose to take over Earth for himself. These four regular Joes will turn from normal everyday joes into Earth's only hope as they try to prevent an alien race called the gloobas from taking over the world using virtual reality as a weapon.
Get ready for an action-packed adventure where the enemies are not human and watch our heroes explore a virtual world that will break the rules of nature and science. Little do our heroes know they will fight in a war that was once fought over one thousand years ago and the time has come again for the war to commence once again between good and evil.
These four distinctive people (Angel, Maria, Dayvon and Luis) will have to put aside their differences as they will travel to places including New York, Hollywood, the Arctic Core and even outer space. To raise the stakes even higher our heroes will only have 10 days to reverse the effects of the virtual world to Earth otherwise, the world may not survive or be under alien rule. Is this what World War 3 has in store for the people on Earth.
Is Earth due for another dark age similar to the fall of the Roman Empire? If our heroes fail Earth will fall and nobody will know why or how. Prepare for an adventure where anything can happen will happen, along with plenty of Romance, time traveling and our heroes will even see paranormal forces that will either hurt or help them and an ending that will make you cry!
Thanks Angel! we'll be looking forward to your next novel and to next week when we meet one of your awesome characters!
About the Party Hat and free e-book winners. As most of you know, I'm on the road...In fact I am sitting at a roadside rest stop near Spartanburg, SC completing this. We'll have the drawing NEXT WEEK and include in the drawing not only the regular supporters but those who voted for me in the Have You Heard Competition!
THREE WINNERS WILL BE ANNOUNCED!!!
So hoist a glass in celebration with Dionysus, read his adventures in Mark McQuillen's Black Rose - tales of the Petals and join me then!