Welcome to Sylum Clan


Hello!  Welcome to Sylum!

Recently we’ve had newbies and some poor souls that have stumbled onto Sylum with no idea what the crazy is all about.  I figured it was time to do a ‘Sticky Post‘ to help all those who wander into the Manor, navigate around this vast universe.

So here we go.


If you’re new here, welcome!!  You’ve just been recommended to this vast multi-story universe, and you likely have no idea where to go or what to do.

Well first off.

Fact: Vampires exists.


Welcome to Sylum Clan.

A multi-layered, character driven storyverse.

Inspiration for the first story that effectively launched this concept, was the death of Timothy ‘Speed’ Speedle from the Television Series CSI: Miami.

His implausible and much mourned demise, led to the premise that you can’t kill someone if they’re already dead.

This quite literally immortalized him, birthing the first story Kiss of Death, and the rest just kept on growing, sprawling  across more than 7,000 years of unexpected history, and on into the future.

A few things you should know, so you can’t say we didn’t warn you *grins*.  There are 3 Major Story Arcs, and hundreds of Supplemental Stories.  These stories expand across 13 Clans, 7 Kin Clans, and showcase over 1200 Characters.

We hit our 10th Anniversary in 2015, we’re working on the next 10 years as we speak.

For further information:

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The Patron Saints Winery Presents – National Wine Day

Click to Make a Reservation

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Guest Post: Scavenger Hunt Day by Paula Cas

Sylum Snippet by Paula Cas

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Coffee House Friday

Sylum's Coffee House Image

Favorite vacation from childhood?

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Afternoon Fic: Mac/Danny Sylum Story – Part 6

Part One

Part Five

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Throwback Thursday: The Adventures of One Jacob Andrew Jensen – Super Geek by taibhrigh


Link to Fic

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Sylum Trivia: New Question

Trivia Question: How many ‘dads’ does Dean Winchester have (this includes past lives) and name them!

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Afternoon Fic: Mac/Danny Sylum Story – Part 5

Part One

Part Four

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Guest Post: Red Cross Founders Day by Paula Cas


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In Memoriam: Niki Lauda

May 20, 2019 – We’ve lost Formula 1 legend – Niki Lauda

I’m sure you’re racing James across the clouds as we speak.

Niki Lauda has a tie into Sylum.  The story has now become a tribute to him.

Link to Fic

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Guest Post: Rescue Pet Day by Paula Cas


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Sylum Inspiration: Benoit Fransiscus

Tallikut: Clan Leader

Benoit was born in Gaul. His father was a Roman soldier, who earned his freedom, his mother, was the daughter of a scholar. His mother saw to his education, his father saw to his ability to defend himself.

His father had always said he inherited his mother sense of compassion and trust, he wasn’t sure if that was a good thing in the world they lived.

Through political and diplomatic means, Benoit became close with the Meridius Family. He was there the fateful day when soldiers road into the farm.  Instantly he knew the situation was bad, and grabbed his charge, young Alejandro and ran.

And didn’t stop.

He knew if Rome was to discover the boy had lived, he would be hunted down and killed.

He kept running until he hit Britain.

When Alejandro became ill, he found Severus, the nearby Roman Garrison’s doctor. He begged him to save the boy, that it was important for him to live, his family name needed to survive.

Severus slowly got the story out of the Benoit, while helping the child.  Over the next few months the two became friends. In time he told Benoit about his nature, and gave him away to watch over not just the kid, but his children, and children’s children. To make sure the family name survived.

He took it without remorse.

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Guest Post: 5 Quick Photoshop Tips by taibhrigh


Me again, taibhrigh, Sylum’s Resident Artist. Today I’m here to talk about 5 quick tips for Photoshop. If you are using one of the other tools some of this information should be adaptable.


Layers Are Your Friends

A layer can be just about anything in photoshop –from a background to text. If you are going to modify something on an image layer –say removing an earring or changing the contrast– make a copy of that layer (and rename it because “person copy 1” and “person copy 2” won’t help you identify why you made the copy, but “person earring removed” will).

Why layers? Because once you go to far along with your change on the layer you really can’t go back (especially if you’ve closed the file). Even if you have your edit history tracking.

Also, overlays, patterns, etc are easier to manipulate on their own layer.


Never Merge or Flatten Unless You Are ABSOLUTELY Sure

Especially the “Flatten” option. This literally merges all lays, including text, into one single layer –text will no longer be editable. Once this is done and you close the file, you are not getting the layers back.

And then if you are absolutely sure, click “save as” and save the file as a new version, then flatten and save.


Round not Square

Use solid round brushes at 100% fill and opacity to remove background from around the part of an image you want to keep. Yes, a pixel is a square, a human body is not. Yes, the round brush may take a little longer, especially if you are doing close detail removal. But, the round brush will keep you from turning the person into noticeable pixels (jagged edges) –especially around the face.

If you are having problems seeing if you have removed enough of the background, try creating a new layer that is underneath the layer you are modifying. Make this new layer a solid, bright color that is not in the image.


Overlay and Soft Light with Layers

Are both a quick way to change a shirt color or add a background pattern. These layers can be kept at 100% opacity and fill or lessened to whatever you think works best for what you are trying to accomplish.



This is the spaces between letters in a font. This is what will help make your text a little more readable. In photoshop you have two ways to increase and decrease this space. Sometimes you will need to use both. Sometimes you are going to decrease one but might increase the either. The “VA” on the character palette will change the kerning for all words/letters selected. The “V/A” (sometimes there will also be a little arrow under the “A” that’s pointed towards the “V”) is the option to change the kerning just between the two letters between the cursor.

Cursive fonts may even be set to negative kernings to make the letters actually connect correctly.

Questions? Leave them below.


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Nicholas J. Finch Website – Updates

Nicholas J. Finch has a new Home Page!

Check it out and make sure to subscribe to get new posts and updates from Nicholas J. Finch.


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Coffee House Friday

Sylum's Coffee House ImageGoing with the travel theme … the one place you want to go?

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Throwback Thursday: Retaliation – A Border Fanmix by Gil Grissom

Retaliation Fanmix

*Right Click to Download

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