Guest Post and Giveaway: Regan Hastings, author of Visions of Skyfire

I’m so thrilled to have Regan Hastings on the blog today! It’s release day for her brand new paranormal romance, Visions of Skyfire, and in addition to her guest post, she’s offering up one copy of the first book in the series, Visions of Magic (it’s awesome, and I tell you why HERE), to one lucky winner, so be sure to check the details at the bottom of the post!

Please welcome Regan to the blog!

Evil, Thy Name is Muzak
by Regan Hastings

Evil in this world manifests itself in the form of on-hold muzak, music so bad it makes you go, “Ack!”

I’m on hold right now with my internet provider. The seemingly innocuous instrumental is meant to soothe the nerves but instead does the exact opposite. I’ve been on hold for 16 minutes so far, and I’ve yet to speak to anyone. I went through the whole “Press 1 for English” rigmarole, entered my zip code, hit pound. (What I really wanted to do was hit pound, pound, POUND!!!)

18 minutes, 17 seconds.

This infernal muzak has cycled through 6 times so far. Each time I hear the opening bars, my blood pressure rises. This song came from the Rejected Sitcom Theme Songs pile. It wasn’t even good enough for Saved by the Bell, and the freakin’ internet company was too cheap to spring for a second tune, so at least they could alternate. No, that would imply caring about their customers’ comfort and wellbeing.

21 minutes, 4 seconds.

Oh. My. GOD! I’m not kidding – the call just failed.

3 minutes, 31 seconds later, after re-entering 1 for English, my account number, pound (pound, pound, POUND!!!)… I’m on hold again, at the back of the queue. And yep, you guessed it. The evil muzak’s opening bars have put me right back on the edge of insanity.

Is this Hell?

If I get cancer in my left ear, can I sue my internet provider?

7 minutes, 34 seconds into the second call. Still no sign of humanity.

VISIONS OF SKYFIRE, Book 2 of The Awakening, comes out on October 4, the day this blog is scheduled to be posted. Teresa Santiago’s powers have Awakened. She’s always known she was destined to be one of the most powerful witches in the world, but even so, she’s shocked when she discovers she can call down the lightning and direct it toward her enemies.

13 minutes, 23 seconds… I could use Teresa’s powers right about now. (I’m not making up these numbers! You are truly bearing witness to my torture.)

As the hellacious muzak begins once more, enjoy this brief excerpt from VISIONS OF SKYFIRE:

Teresa fought to hone her magic. To perfect the power that had begun to quicken inside her only days ago. She had known what was coming all her life. What she was destined for. But the mystery had been when her magic would appear. The world wasn’t a good place for witches these days, but magic ran in her blood, stretching back through her family’s maternal line for generations. She should have been able to draw on that legacy, but in the face of this new and overwhelming power, she was lost.

She stood tall, her cowboy boots planted far apart to give her a sense of stability that she was sorely lacking. Gritting her teeth, she concentrated, and swung her hand out again to direct another whip of lightning across the desert. Instantly a jagged bolt flew—in the wrong direction.


Teresa shrieked as her black truck exploded into a fireball. Flames leaped into the air, plumes of smoke twisted in the wind and flaming tires shot off the body of the truck like Frisbees from hell. As thunder still rattled the sky and wind howled, Teresa stared at the smoking hulk of her truck.

“Son of a bitch.” She kicked the sand and thought not only about the incredibly long walk back home she had to look forward to but also about her now-burned-to-a-crisp cell phone. She couldn’t even call someone to help her. She was stuck—no water, no food, no way home.

She’d grown up here, so she wasn’t a stranger to the desert. But the thought of a long walk back to town through the rain with the storm chasing her sent her stomach to her knees. Added to that was the fact that she couldn’t quite shake the feeling that she was being watched . . .

28 minutes, 13 seconds, and that’s after the first call failed. Evil bastards.

Epilogue: 38 minutes, 22 seconds into the second call… the call failed. I’m a writer, but I can’t make this stuff up.

Do you agree that on-hold muzak is evil? What are some of the other evils of the modern world?

*Regan Hastings is Maureen Child, the USA Today Bestselling author of more than one hundred romance novels and novellas. A six time nominee for the prestigious RITA award from the Romance Writers of America, Maureen’s books have been translated into dozens of languages around the world and she’s even had one of her books made into a CBS-TV movie. Regan/Maureen do agree on one thing completely. Love really can conquer all. And in the world of dark paranormal…that’s the only thing you can count on.
Keep up with Regan: Website | Facebook
Purchase Visions of Skyfire: Amazon | Barnes and Noble

1.Giveaway is for one copy of Visions of Magic to one winner.

**GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED. Thanks so much for entering!**

About Visions of Magic:
In the ten years since magic has reemerged in the world, witches have become feared and hunted. For weeks Shea Jameson has been haunted by visions of fire. When she unintentionally performs a spell in public, she becomes one of the hunted. Her only hope is Torin, a dangerously sensual man who claims to be her eternal mate.


  1. Being put on hold is bad enough, but when you finally get through and they tell you that you have to call a different number for your problem…..that is when I get upset.
    You are a new author to me, but I am very excited to read your books!

  2. I completly agree! I think the new way Facebook is set up is just plain evil! Why fix something that isnt broken?

  3. I follow you on Facebook.

  4. I follow you on facebook.

  5. i hate the on hold music!! or when it finally has a good song and you are drifting off to sleep and it turns off and gets your hopes up then says.. YOUR CALL IS IMPORTANT TO US PLEASE STAY ON THE LINE.. AHHHH!!! .. ahem… anyways. traffic jams, angry kitties at 3 am meowing in your face.. accidently setting your alarm an hour early.. those are some other modern evils.. except the cat.. no wonder they got mummified.. lol

    alainala AT

  6. i follow on facebook and on here (GFC? whatever the one in the top left corner is)

    alainala @ hotmail dot ca

  7. Thank you so much for having me here today, Kristin! I really appreciate it. We are going to PAR-TAY! After months of waiting, I finally get to see VISIONS OF SKYFIRE in the stores. YIPPEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!

    Before I forget, I want to let everyone know about a contest I’m holding on my website. Read the free excerpt of VISIONS OF SKYFIRE, then answer a simple question about it, and you’ll have a chance to win a $50 Amazon gift card! Here’s the link: VISIONS OF SKYFIRE excerpt

  8. Sue, oh, isn’t that the worst? Or they say, “I’ll transfer you” and don’t wait for you to respond, and then the transfer doesn’t go through and you have to start over again! Oh the pain, the pain!

    I’m glad you’re excited to read VISIONS OF SKYFIRE! Be sure to read the excerpt and enter my contest!

  9. LOL, Heather! I think a lot of people would agree with you about the new Facebook being evil. People seem to really HATE it. I wonder what the conversations are like around the Facebook offices. Do they feel bad, or are they gleefully (evilly) rubbing their hands together, enjoying the world’s torment?

  10. Alaina, LOL on the angry kitteh! Too cute. You clearly love the little demon. I’m with you on accidentally setting your alarm early. AUGH! Hate when that happens! For that matter, I think mornings are evil.

  11. I just read an excerpt from this book last night and I really enjoyed it! Of course I HAD to add it to my ever growing to-read pile! It sounds great!

    I agree with everyone. The new FB is terrible! I think they are trying to be too much to everyone and now they have just gone bananas. I like Twitter and I like FB for different reasons. FB trying to be Twitter to? I don’t think so.

    As far as the impending doom of being on hold, just knowing you will be on hold before you make the call is enough to make you want to scream. Being transferred umpteen million times is, I’d say, grounds for random acts of violence. What makes me see red is on top of all that, when the customer service representative on tier 29 (after starting at 1) has an accent and talks a zillion miles a minute. My patience is already fried. You must know you have an accent to a majority of the callers, why, oh why must you talk so frickin fast on top of it? Now that, in my opinion is grounds for homicidal intent. Just sayin’. 🙂

  12. I follow on GFC: GzNKz4evr
    I also follow on FB.

  13. Congratulations on the release of your new book. I’m looking forward to reading it! SSSQQQQUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!

  14. Kendra, oooh, I am so with you on the agents who speak too fast or too softly. Seriously, when you can hear the on hold muzak better than you can hear the representative talking to you when you finally get through, there’s something wrong. Get it together, people!

  15. Thank you, Cathy! I’m going to SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE right along with you!!!! I’m so excited to get VISIONS OF SKYFIRE into readers’ hands!

  16. I absolutely LOATHE on hold music. Especially when there’s a recording to remind you that ‘you are import to us’. GRRRrrrr…apparently NOT enough!!
    Definitely turning your alarm clock off in your sleep…so frustrating. Running out of coffee and not realizing it. Boo!

    deadtossedwaves at gmail dot com

  17. +1 GFC follower

    deadtossedwaves at gmail dot com

  18. I think not being able to talk to a “live” person is evil! You keep hitting different numbers and none of them are the right number!! GRRRRRR! Thanks for the giveaway!

  19. I follow through email.

  20. I do not believe in evil in the paranormal sense, but that we create evil
    teressaoliver at gmail dot com

  21. i get your email, follow on google reader and follow on gfc
    teressaoliver at gmail dot com

  22. Cheryl Rasmussen

    I am in agreement with you. Being put on hold after you have heard press one for English and all the other crap is evil – time is money literally as you are paying for those minutes. You should be able to just press 0 and a representative should come on. I had an email once that told all the ways you could bypass the hold but I can’t find it or I would pass it on to you.

    I have read alot of your books aka Maureen Child but never Regan Hastings. I will have to give them a try. I follow on facebook and your website and through Susan Mallery.

  23. I totally agree…on-hold muzak IS evil! Other evils that come to mind are those folks that call and ask YOU to ‘please hold, blah, blah, blah’…and it’s a customer service call thanking you for using their product/services…or it’s someone wanting you to take a survey. ACK!

  24. +1 GFC follower – Barbara

  25. Ugh-who hasn’t had one of those awful on hold experiences with the darn muzak? Then you finally get through to a human and they can’t help you so they transfer you, you go back on hold…lather, rinse, repeat and if you are lucky your question or concern is taken care of. Other evils of the modern world: spam-can’t stand cleaning that stuff out of my inbox; texting while driving/walking-can’t tell you how many times I’ve been almost hit by pedestrians not paying attention or drivers who are not paying attention; cell phones in the bathroom-nothing quite like being in a public bathroom when the person in the stall next to you starts up a conversation. I could go on and on!

    Great question 🙂 Great giveaway!

    mljfoland AT hotmail DOT com

  26. +1 GFC follower: ML

  27. On hold music IS evil, right when I get into it it is cruelly snatched away. edysicecreamlover18@gmailDOTcom

  28. GFC Krystal Larson

  29. On-hold muzak is definitely evil and so are those commercials you get while on hold that just keep repeating over and over. Something else I hat is receiving texts on my cell phone that are ads, what’s up with that?
    This series sounds fantastic, and I’m looking forward to reading both books.

    Barbed1951 at aol dot com

  30. GFC follower – Barbara E.

  31. Vivien, EXACTLY! That infernal music makes me feel supremely unimportant. Especially when you’re on hold so long that you keep hearing “Your call is important to us” over and over and over again.

  32. yes muzak is incredibly evil the water service has the worst muzak followed by pg and yuck. i think more modern day evils are cell phones particular text messaging because i always see people texting and driving

  33. Sariah, ooooooh, that IS evil! It’s like the seventh circle of hell, being caught in the endless loop of Press 6, Press 1, Press 4, Press 6, Press 1, Press 4…

  34. Teressa, thanks so much for stopping by today! I hope you’ll read the excerpt of VISIONS OF SKYFIRE and enter my contest for a $50 Amazon gift card. Here’s the link:

    VISIONS OF SKYFIRE excerpt and contest

  35. Cheryl,

    Thank you so much! I love hearing from readers who have enjoyed my books, whether I wrote them as Regan Hastings or Maureen Child. I hope you’ll give VISIONS OF SKYFIRE a try!

  36. Barbara, OOOOOOH, I hate that! When you answer the phone and get that moment or two of electronic silence before a recording kicks in. Sorry, nope. Not going to wait to listen to you play a recording.

  37. ML, spam is SO evil! And LOL on cell phone conversations in public restrooms. Seriously… what do they think is going to happen if they’re unavailable for two minutes? The world is going to end? Their company is going to go bankrupt? Just call them back, people!

  38. LOL, Krystal!!!!! SO funny!

  39. Thank you so much, Barbara! I hope you love VISIONS OF SKYFIRE! I hope you’ll rush out and buy it this week!

  40. Victoria, texting and driving is not just evil, it’s dangerous. It should be outlawed everywhere.

  41. I prefer the muzak to the endless commericals,especially when they keep telling you to go to their site online, if I wanted to do that I would have. Or better yet when they keep you on hold forever and then actually tell you to call back another time and just hang up on you. Telephone companies are the worst!! Love your cover and sounds intriguing!

  42. sorry I guess I was to say I follow you on GFC and Facebook – thanks.


  43. Yes Muzak is totally evil! Also, Cell phones are taking over the world: sometimes they ARE evil!!
    This sounds like a great read!!
    blomette @

  44. Muzak is beyond evil! It is a legalized form of torture. ~shudders~ Other evils of the modern world…Telephone directories that require you to push “x” button to do “y” option, and oh bytheby, you never get a live person half the time. Velveeta and spam. The auto correct feature on various electronic devices.
    I could probably name a few more, but those are the ones that jump to mind presently. 😀

    Ldyskyfire (at)

  45. Victoria Zumbrum

    I am a follower and email subscriber.

  46. Victoria Zumbrum

    I agree the new facebook is evil. I also think we rely on computers too much and they are going to destroy us one day. Please enter me in contest.

  47. Catslady, you’re right. When you’re on hold and they keep telling you to go to the website, it’s like they’re saying, “You’re a pain in our butt. We don’t want to TALK to you. Just go online!”

  48. Thank you, Pam! I hope you love VISIONS OF SKYFIRE. I think it’s the most exciting book I’ve ever written. Starts with a bang and keeps going from there.

  49. LOL, Cameron! So true… and so funny! But… Velveeta is evil? I know it’s bad for you, but it makes the best queso! I can’t live in a world without queso!

  50. Victoria, I have always secretly believed that computers are evil. Let’s unite against them and vanquish them once and for all!

  51. I hate being put on hold but the music that is played is aweful. What I really hate is to be placed on hold when the person calls you. My house people did this to me just today. Thanks for the giveaway.

  52. I also follow your blog (RachaelM).

  53. I believe money is an evil of the modern world.

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  54. On hold muzac is evil, it’s true! So is the remark by a service minion, “I am just doing my job.” Automated phone calls to get service are evil – far too frequently you do end up getting disconnected!

  55. I am a GFC follower (robindpdx(at)gmail(dot)com) and follow on Facebook.

  56. Rachael, that is morally wrong, don’t you think, for someone to call you and then put you on hold? I suppose it depends on your level of closeness with that person. If it’s a friend, it’s forgivable. If it’s the electric company… evil.

  57. On hold muzak is definitely evil especially after listening it for so long and either having the call fail or being told that you have to call another number (had to do that with dell). It is this muzak that brainwashes you to accept that this automation of the world is acceptable.

    The other evil thing is cable companies and their hold over us to fork over the money for the shows we want to watch..GRRR.
    +1 I follow on facebook and +1 I follow via email

  58. Yadira, money can certainly lead people to do evil things. That’s for SURE! I think that’s been true since money was first invented.

  59. Robin, oh yes! “Just doing my job” is not an excuse for being an *ss!

  60. Kristen, I hate when you finally get through, and they tell you that you have to call a wrong number, putting the burden on the customer instead of the employee. Don’t forget the “service” in “Customer Service,” people!

  61. Yes, yes, yes, it is evil!!! Especially when you’re stuck on hold with the gas company for 45 minutes and you have to listen so you don’t miss your turn!! Evilllllll!!!!

  62. GFC follower 🙂

  63. Pingback: Book Bits: Iron Knight, Clockwork Prince, Iron Seas & more | Vampire Book Club

  64. OMG, I hate being on hold!!! I have a cell phone plan that saves me money and is cheaper as long as I use it for cell phone to cell phone and I always keep a land line open because I live out of state and have family all over and not all of them have cells. So when we had our recent move and I had to get on the phone and hook everything up and disconnect at our old house I spent an entire two and a half days on my cell spending most of my time on hold listening to classical music. If your going to put me on hold for 30 min, at least let me listen to something that wont put me asleep and add to the fact that I had a huge cell bill after all that. I would have to say another evil is facebook, it’s way too distracting!!


  65. GFC follower-Jolene and Family


  66. Over on-hold muzak is evil, the songs stay stuck in your head for days and sometimes it’s all you think about. Another evil of the world id elevator music.


  67. GFC follower- Krysta Banco


  68. I am such a music lover that I even enjoy it when I am on hold, what I do not like and think it the ultimate evil is the computer generative responses to an inquiry that end up putting your arm to sleep while you wait to be shuffled to the next computer response – this is just so wrong! Thank you for sharing with us to day and for the wonderful giveaway opportunity.


  69. GFC follower – Denise Zaky


  70. LOL! On-hold musak is always evil. And what they do to amazing songs to make them musak songs… just criminal!

    Wonderful post. It was great fun. And I’ve got Visions of Magic on my want list too! I didn’t even realize the second book was coming out already! Where the hell have I been? Gah!

    Thank you!


  71. I’m a follower! By Google Friend Connect. 🙂 And I subscribe by email as well.

    Melissa (My World…in words and pages)


  72. I can’t stand muzak – especially now that I’m hearing favorite songs from when I was in high school in elevators. So wrong on so many levels! Thanks for the interview and giveaway!


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