S: Thanks for having me! I'm glad to have a break! Being a medium is … really hard to explain to someone who's never been there. Most people are afraid of ghosts, but for me they're just a part of every day life. I don't see them everywhere, all the time, but when I do they almost always want me to pass on a message. Deciding whether or not it's the right time or place to tell someone is probably the hardest part. And yes, there have been MANY times I've been overwhelmed by them. In fact, that is a big reason I ended up hospitalized.
E : You’ve been through a lot recently. What was it like staying at a mental hospital? How did you cope with not being able to see anyone?
S: The mental hospital was like being in prison. I know that isn't the typical experience, and I don't want anyone to think it is, because there are times when you need that extra intervention just like you would if you broke your leg or got really bad pneumonia. For me it was different since there were extenuating circumstances. It was horrible to not see my baby boy. I missed him so much, and worried about him every day. And being so isolated, even with people around me, was a very empty feeling.
E: You recently went through a really traumatic event. Your son went missing, correct? What was that like for you?
S: It was literally the worst thing I could ever possibly have gone through, worse than anything I could have imagined. Losing a limb might be the closest thing to it. My job in life is to keep my child safe, and I felt like I failed him completely and was in an almost unending panic mode. I had to remind myself that the best way to help him was to calm down and methodically work through all the information and come up with a concrete plan to get him home safe.
E: When you first met Daniel, you were in the mental hospital, right? Not the most ideal play for meeting a guy. What went through your head when you saw Daniel? Was the attraction instant?
S: Haha, it definitely isn't the most romantic of places for a meet-cute, is it? When he showed up, after so long being isolated in the hospital, I was completely taken off guard. So my first thought was “who the hell is this random dude?” I wouldn't say there was instant attraction. Attraction wasn't really the word for it. It was more like two souls just recognizing each other, this need to be with him wherever it might take me.
E: You’ve overcome a lot, but there still seems to be a lot of problems out there for you. How do you handle so much stress? What’s it like being stuck between both Heaven and Hell?
S: Sometimes I don't exactly handle the stress at all. It overwhelms me and I completely lose it, whether it's having a complete raging temper tantrum, or crying for days, I sometimes just have to let it wash over me like waves. The rest of the time though, I like to come up with plans. Strategizing makes me feel in control. As far as Heaven and Hell, if all the angels and demons (minus a very select few) were to spontaneously combust so I never had to deal with them again, I would be a very happy girl. These are beings who have been stuck in a very restrictive role, with thoughts and ideals that are set in stone, so making a dent in their thick skulls and surviving to tell the tale can be a bit of an adventure to put it mildly.
E: Do you have any tips for your fans out there on dealing with pestering angels and demons? What advice would you have for someone going into the apocalypse?
S: Hide in a hole and don't come out till it's over? That's what I wish I could do! We're talking about ancient beings with great big chips on their shoulders and somewhat unstoppable powers. Standing up to them is a dangerous task, especially if you can't measure up to the challenges they put before you.
E: Lastly, do you have any big plans for the future? Anything exciting we can look forward to?
S: The apocalypse is really heating up, so my big future is keeping Heaven and Hell from burning everything to the ground. After that? I'd love to just go back to a simple life, family and friends and nothing important to deal with for
At Death’s Door
Title: At Death’s Door
Author: Astrid V. Tallaksen
Genre: Urban Fantasy / Paranormal Romance
The world is a pretty straightforward place. Even for medium Sara Stone things seem pretty simple, aside from the whole talking to spirits bit. But when the spirits get too hard to handle and Sara ends up admitted to a mental hospital, the world starts to seem a lot less straightforward. First her family disappears, including her four year old son. Then she gets the sneaking suspicion that not only are the staff at the mental hospital somehow connected, but they also have no intention of ever letting her leave the hospital.
Everything changes when Sara has her first visitor in three months. Daniel is handsome, friendly, and a complete stranger. When he promises to spring her from the hospital and swears that everything she’s experienced is completely real, Sara has no choice but to believe him. But once she reaches a run-down Victorian house in the tiny Alabama town her rescuer calls home, the last thing she expects to discover is that every memory she has is a lie.
Daniel reveals a world filled with angels, demons, and an impending war humans know nothing about. Sara wants to ignore her role in the whole mess – all that matters is solving the mystery of where her son has gone. But the forces of Heaven, Hell, and the Heart have other plans for her. Can she find her child before the world comes crashing down?
Title: Between Heaven & Hell
Author: Astrid V. Tallaksen
Genre: Urban Fantasy / Paranormal Romance
Being a fallen angel used to be easy. A quiet life with the people she loves is all Sara ever asked for. Unfortunately, the apocalypse didn’t get the message. After nearly losing everything, she’s managed to put her life back together and start living what she hoped was happily ever after with her small family. Now she wants nothing more than to hide away and pretend the end of the world is a distant rumor. Her life has already been torn apart once. Doesn’t she deserve a break?
The apocalypse finds its way back to her doorstep when a letter arrives. Is it a friendly warning, a dire threat, or a simple reminder that she can’t run away from what’s to come? Sara refuses to take heed and pays dearly for her avoidance. With her family in danger and the preservation of free will hanging in the balance, she finds herself with no other choice. Sara must follow the path forged for her, a path that may take away everything she holds dear and leave her in pieces at the end. She’s caught between Heaven and Hell, and the last person she’d ever have considered trusting might just be her greatest ally.
Astrid V. Tallaksen grew up with a heart for stories of creatures and places outside of this world. Her love of reading quickly became a love of writing. She spent several years creating content and helping writers to improve their craft on the online world of Althanas, a creative writing workshop in the guise of a roleplaying forum. A self-avowed nerd, Astrid loves science fiction, comic books, and eighties fantasy movies in the vein of The Princess Bride and Labyrinth. Her geekiness extends to annual volunteer work at the massive sci-fi convention known as Dragon*con every year in Atlanta, Georgia. In the odd times that she’s not immersed in geekdom or writing, Astrid loves to sing karaoke, crochet, and spend time with her family and pets.
Links to purchase At Death’s Door:
- Amazon: Amazon
- Barnes & Noble: B&N
- Kobo: Kobo
- Apple iBooks: iBooks
- Scribd: Scribd
- Page Foundry: Page Foundry
Links to purchase Between Heaven & Hell: