Val Tobin's love of reading translated into a love of writing from the time she was six years old. She also had a fascination for the paranormal and occult, which is reflected in her writing. Her lifelong passions were interrupted by a sojourn into programming and a ten-year career in software/Web development.
She became a certified Reiki Master/Teacher and Angel Therapy Practitioner® with Advanced Training, certified by Doreen Virtue, Ph.D. in 2008. She then trained in mediumship, also with Doreen Virtue, in Kona, Hawaii. Val received a Bachelor of Science in Parapsychic Science in 2010, and is working on a masters degree in Parapsychology. She is a member of a few paranormal investigation and UFO groups, and participates in investigations and sky watches. Val spends most of her time writing, presenting workshops, studying, and enjoying time with her husband, two kids, and three grandkids.
Val wrote for Community MX, a site dedicated to all things Macromedia, and had a story published in Doreen Virtue's Hay House book "Angel Words." "The Experiencers" is her first novel. Val lives in Newmarket, Ontario, with her husband and cat.
Describe your desk
It's an organized mess. A row of books on writing and on a variety of supernatural topics sits directly behind my laptop--grist for the mill. Meditation music CDs I play when I need inspiration help tease the muse out of hiding. I keep magazines and brochures on research topics near at hand, so they tend to get stacked up in piles on and around my desk. My travel mug of coffee or tea is always within reach, and so is my glass bottle of water. Then, for atmosphere, I have candles (never light them), crystal skulls, yarrow sticks in a jar (don't ask), a slinky, a box of vitamins, a box of my favourite snacks, and photos of my friends and family.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in North York, Ontario. In Ontario, the weather affects a lot of what you do. It can change or kill plans, especially in winter. People focus on it. Weather and climate play an important role in my stories.
Three Exciting Novels from Award-Winning Author Val Tobin: The Experiencers and A Ring of Truth plus, as a bonus, prequel novel Earthbound.
Not killing her might be the death of him. Black-ops Assassin Michael Valiant questions his agency's motives when he's ordered to silence a group of UFO enthusiasts who look less like terrorists than they do housewives and nerds.
Voted #23 in ReadFreely's 50 Best Indie Books of 2017 Awards. A spirit refuses to cross over and becomes earthbound when she discovers the shocking details behind her death. Prequel to The Experiencers.
A young actress at the height of her career has her personal life turned upside down when a horrifying family secret makes front-page news. "Val Tobin's Injury is alive and vicious. It writhes with sex, the glamour of the movies, and the brutality of Dani's past." -- Read Free.ly
Winner of Connections eMagazine's 2017 Reader's Choice awards for Romance (Gold) and Overall (Silver).
Assassin Michael Valiant atones for his brutal past by helping psychic medium Carolyn Fairchild escape the aliens that repeatedly abduct her and the agency that wants to claim her. But when Carolyn discovers her daughter's life is in danger, Carolyn makes a decision that could tear her away from Michael forever.
on June 08, 2014
If you're looking to be horrified, this'll do it.
Specimen & Other Stories
on May 28, 2015
It doesn’t matter what Alan Annand writes, I’ll read it. Over the years, I’ve come to trust him as an author, and when I saw he had a short story collection out, I downloaded and devoured it.
Specimen & Other Stories is a mix of the creepy, the icky, and the hilarious, some of them falling into more than one category.
The offerings begin with the humour piece “Bananarama.” This one also falls under icky though with a side-benefit of laughter. You might think you don’t want to read about someone else’s bowel troubles as he struggles to go vegetarian by eating nothing but bananas and drinking only orange juice, but it’s worth it despite the mental images seared into your brain. I laughed out loud until the tears flowed, and I’ve only done that with a Dave Barry offering before. Kudos to Annand for providing what they call the best medicine.
“The Date Square Killer” tells the story of a hitman scoring a date before he goes to work. The creepiness factor heightens as the killer ruminates on life and social justice. The story captured my interest and held it, a typical feature of Annand’s writing.
“River Girl” is all wry humour and middle-aged angst. Stanley the cad has a life-changing experience with a free-spirted woman he encounters in Toronto’s Don River. It’s an excellent sample of Annand’s writing and why I always come back for more.
“Specimen” brings back the creepiness and dispels the idea that twins can read each other’s minds. Annand plays with twin relationships as he did in “Hide in Plain Sight,” and the results are just as deadly and just as entertaining.
“The Bassman Cometh” takes us back to all-out humour and doesn’t disappoint. I would have enjoyed knowing Annand in university, but perhaps from a distance, as an observer. His description of his escapades with Margaret Atwood again made me laugh out loud.
“The Naskapi and the U-Boat” tells the story of Germans in World War two installing a weather station and finding themselves flummoxed by members of an aboriginal family. It’s the one I found most emotionally engaging as it engendered empathy for the innocent family.
While I don’t typically go for short-story collections, I enjoyed this one. Each story was different though unmistakeably Annand. Well worth the read, and if you haven’t read anything before by Annand, it’s a good place to start.