I love the piano, and so does Morgan, my hero in my new release. He’s a classical pianist,
I love the piano, and so does Morgan, my hero in my new release. He’s a classical pianist, but has been known to play Mr. Piano Man, in a low-rent piano bar in Charleston, SC while customers too drunk or too sad to listen stuffed money into a fish bowl.
Now, we all know what the piano is, but I thought I’d collect a few facts about the struck string instrument. The exact time the piano was invented is uncertain, but its birth dates to the 1700s, in Italy. The term piano is a shortened form of pianoforte, Italian for the instrument, which in turn derives from gravicembalo col piano e forte and fortepiano.
An acoustic piano usually has a protective wooden case surrounding the soundboard and metal strings, and 88 black and white keys The strings are sounded when the keys are pressed or struck, and silenced by a damper when the keys are released.
Three notable brands are Steinway, Bosendorfer (both German-made), and Mason & Hamlin, an American-produced instrument and my personal favorite. The Mason & Hamlin features a tension bar to stabilize and give longer life to the soundboard.
A couple of companies make electronic reproducing systems for the piano, including PianoDisc and Pianomation by QRS Music. The keys move as if a ghost were playing. They are really sweet and very good inspiration.
In Morgan D’Arcy: A Vampyre Rhapsody (release date 9/9/preorder available) the piano features strongly. Some type of the instrument is mentioned or waiting in the wings as the story unfolds. Rhapsody is a collection of Morgan stories from The Wild Rose Press, Black Rose line. I am tickled to see these portraits of Morgan in print! I’ve brought a short excerpt:
Snow built castles on the windowsills. Wispy flakes swirled in the night air. I stood at the mullioned window with my back to the Chief Councilor of the ruling body of the Vampyre. The pure white silence of a snowy night echoed in the room. A fire crackled in the fireplace, but cold seeped through the stone walls.
At midnight, Lucien St. Albans had arrived with shocking news.
Royal Oak wasn’t on the beaten path. The castle perched on a hill above a small village on the Devon coast. From my bedroom window, I could see the ocean. Lucien had driven his new motorcar hard to tell me that there was no such thing as forever. He was pale and drawn, worried. I’d never seen the Chief Councilor rattled. Lucien St. Alban’s self control was legendary. The emotion in his black eyes was fear, and a shudder chased over me.
“I drove straight from an emergency meeting of Les Elus,” he announced without preamble. “We are all in jeopardy.”
In a small principality between France and Spain, an epidemic of anthrax ravaged the countryside. Not only human villagers died in Andorra. Two vampires had perished.
Grief for Daphne and guilt for her suicide had wearied my spirit. “Why send me? I’m not a scientist.”
“Dear God, Morgan, I wouldn’t send you into danger.” Behind me, Lucien’s reflection appeared in the window. He rested his hands on my shoulders. “One of our scientists plans to travel to Andorra immediately and investigate. He believes the bacteria secretes an endotoxin that is a reverse mutagen. When infected, the disease progresses at a phenomenal rate. The victim reverts to mortal, and the body disintegrates to ash.”
A thrill pierced my lethargy. Dead vampires presented an intriguing mystery. Members of our select society should not perish to a disease fatal to humans, or very few others of the Grim Reaper’s tricks. It was time for me to stop lurking in Death’s shadow. My grief for Daphne was useless to her corpse. She was quite simply and forever gone. Reverse mutagen. The mere idea sent a shiver of excitement over me. If the Vampyre Effect could be undone, then the possibility of returning to human existed.
I have a dark blue t-shirt with the saying I’ve used as a headline. I think it will become, along with lounge pants, pajamas for the Dallas Readers & ‘ritas convention in November. Oh yes, it does have long sleeves.
Happy Friday!! Linda