Monday, December 19, 2016

Christmas and Kindles

As the electronic book craze continues through another year, more and more people are getting e-readers such as the nook or kindles, and some are simply reading books on their phones.  

For anyone buying kindles or other ereaders for their loved ones and friends, or even for themselves this holiday, I thought I'd share a few ideas for books to load for my zombie/horror readers.  AND best of all, they are FREE books, which make them even better.  Please make note that these titles are only free on December 25th and 26th so you need to be on top of it, however, it's would be quite the haul of free'ness if you do.  Also, as an added bonus, there is a short story from yours truly, in the Zombies Inside book.  

Merry Christmas everyone.  Be safe for the New Year, and I will see you in 2017.  

Friday, October 28, 2016

Submissions - How to

If you are a writer, you have to learn all about submissions.  Whether you are submitting to a magazine or a publisher or an agent, there is a process you have to learn and accept.

1.  The research.  I don’t mind this part of the process.  I use market books, and google and site searches.  I like looking up agents and publishers and magazines.  I like to see what people are reading and what is coming out and new book recommendations.  Plus I like lists.  It’s a nice way to feel like you are making headway as you make your way down a list and mark things off as done.  The research, yeah, this part is fun.  Yes, really. 

Once you have done your research and made your lists, you move on to crafting:

2.  The Query.  We all hate this little guy.  I hate it, as I think I am good at telling stories, but I suck at being a salesman.  I don’t want to be a salesman.  Well too bad!  You have to learn and learn it as well as you can.  I am still learning.  I personalize each and every query letter.  There is not one query letter that goes out that is exactly the same as another even if I am sending multiple queries out on the same project.  Try to make your book or story or article interesting.  Try to brag about your self.  I am really bad at this.  I don’t want to be noticed.  I want my book to be the star, not me.  I like the shadows and watching the world.  The query is not easy to do.  Don’t just wing it.  Take time and think and try to be exciting and excited about your project. 

After you are done tearing your hair out over the query, then you get to pull out the rest of it drafting:

3.  The Synopsis.  I have shed tears over writing a synopsis before.  Frustrated tears, the I suck at writing tears, this project is awful tears.  Again, I will say I am not a salesman.  I sound stiff and boring a lot during this process.  I don’t know how to sell a book.  I know how to write it.  My solution is to write one, send it to other authors for feedback.  Rip up the one I wrote and try again with the feedback.  Again, find new authors to look it over and again, add in their feedback, until I feel like it’s as good as I can make it.  I never feel it’s perfect, but I always feel that it is good by the time I send it out.

4.  The package.  Now that you have a basic package of documents, next you have to put it all together. Each market and person and whoever you are sending to will want something different.  Give them exactly what they want.  Don’t deviate.  Don’t think you know what they want better than they do.  So I again will stress, give them EXACTLY what they ask for. If they want something different, they will tell you or ask for it. 

Once you do all this and hit send, you will inevitable come to:

5.  The regret and the mistakes.  I do each submission one at a time.  I will usually only do one or two a day if I have a big list, because I don’t want to overwhelm myself.  I like to recheck all the information and all the materials everyone wants.  But there are days that no matter how hard I try I find mistakes in my submissions.  I agonize over the query.  I agonize over the format.  I agonize about the spelling of names.  But I still find wrong things.  A missed name change.  A format letter that I didn’t update the date on because I was too busy freaking out over the content.  Or, my favorite: when I don’t put the correct name in the email, because I’m looking at the wrong list.  Oh yes, I did that once, recently, and beat myself up over it all day.  Knowing that my hard work and agonizing was a complete waste, as I insulted them by not having the right name.  I love that…let me tell ya.  We all have to remember that we are human and not perfect.  Do your very best and the hard work will payoff in the end. 

Don’t give up.  You can do this.  If you have any questions, I may not have a perfect answer, but I will always try to give you the information I know.  So, ask away.  Good luck out there everyone.  This market is hard.  I got your back.

One last thing before I go:  I will be working on a Nanowritmo Book again this year.  Therefore, I will be swamped for November.  I will do my best to stay in touch by social media, and I will of course return emails.  Otherwise, you may not see much of me until December and let’s face it by December we are all a little crazy so maybe not even then. 

Monday, October 17, 2016

Indian Summer

What is Indian Summer?  I heard about it all the time growing up and in my head I thought it had something to do with when the Native American’s had their summer.  The minds of children…what can I really say?  Ask me sometime what I thought the saying "making ends meet" really meant.  Hint:  I thought the word was MEAT not MEET.  Ha!

What the actual meaning of Indian Summer is: A period of unusually dry and warm weather in the autumn.  But it also can mean a period of happiness and success occurring late in life.  For me, I’ll take the warm weather.  In Ohio, I swear that every year, the first day of fall hits and it goes from 90 degrees to 50 degrees overnight and from dry and hot to cold and damp.  I am not a fan of this time of year, as most of my regulars will know. 

How am I staving off the effects of the coming winter?  Well, this lovely Indian Summer is doing wonders without much effort from me. I also got a few bright purple mums to bring life to a dying garden.  I hope they last a good long while.  They make me smile every time I walk passed them.  I am adding more festive scents to my warmers so that the house smells of apples and cinnamon and pumpkins and spice.  That at least gets me thinking along the lines of coming events that make me happy.  That helps a lot.  Other than that, not much I can do about the changing seasons. 

I know so many people, including the tiny dancer (the traitor) that love this time of year.  It’s the hoodies and the bonfires and the falling leaves and the cooler more enjoyable weather for some, and the lack of bugs.  I get it.  I really do.  But for me?  I’ll take the bugs, if I can get the heat.  At least the horror movies are still on. 

Happy Autumn Everyone

Monday, October 3, 2016

Welcome to October

It’s October.  I guess if I have to survive the coming winter, there should be at least something I enjoy about this time of year.  Well, I am happy to announce that there is.  It’s called SCARY MOVIE SEASON! 

I happen to love the horror movies/series/books genre.  I don’t only deal in the genre in October but, this is the time of year that I can find a horror movie on tv any day of the week at any time of the day.  It’s exciting.  Some movies are really bad, but that is part of the greatness of the season.  I can watch all kinds of movies that never made it to the theaters and enjoy them all the same.  I can honestly say that of the horror flicks out there; I have probably watched 90% of them.  The top movies, the B movies, the made for TV movies, all of them.  Some are so silly they are funny.  Some are so scary I have to watch something easy afterward before I can go to bed (those are my favorite).  Some are gross and bloody and some are boring as all get out.  All in all, I can usually find something redeeming in any movie in this genre. 

Here are a few of my favorites, in no particular order:

1.  The Exorcist.  The original.  To this day, this movie still creeps me out.  I have it on VHS and on DVD.  I have seen it so many times, but it still is one of the best.  

2.  Salem’s Lot.  Both the book and the movie are entertaining as all get out.  Not so much goose bump inducing scary, but very good story and characters. 

3.  Nightmare on Elm Street.  This is a gory bloody mix movie.  It’s great. Plus this is the first movie of that Johnny Depp was in.  The series continued on for many movies but this is by far the best one for me.

4.  Halloween and Friday the 13th.  These weren’t so much scary to me, but I liked the ideas behind them.  There are many sequels to each of them, which will keep you entertained for a long time. Granted these movies are part of the T&A time period and if you don’t know what I mean by that, then you are not an 80’s horror movie girl.  No pre-teen/teenage girl want to spend a night watching a horror flick with her boyfriend or parents when it’s all boobs and butts.  Can you say awkward? 

5.  Phantom of the Opera.  This isn’t really scary at all to me, but I love this movie.  It’s one of the few that I feel sorry for the bad guy.  It breaks my heart every time. 

There are so many more that I could make this list go on and on.  These are just a few movies off the top of my head that bring good memories along with them. Things like: how I felt while watching, who I was with, was it in the theater or at home, all kinds of reasons.  What movies in this genre are your favorites?  Do you have any?  Maybe you aren’t a horror movie fanatic like me.  That’s okay.  What is your favorite genre then? 

Monday, September 19, 2016

Kindness in this Day and Age.

The world is not kind to nice people.  Why is that?

Don’t expect me to have an earth shattering answer to that question, as I don’t.  All I know for certain is that no matter how kind or understanding or giving we sometimes are, the world likes to stomp the kindhearted down. 

I wonder if the exceptionally nice people just feel the judgment of others more fully?  Do we care too much and that is why slights whether directed at us or directed at others, of even the simplest type get under our skin?  Do people know that is what happens to us and they get delight out of the little pokes and slices here and there just to see us crumple and break down?  Gossip and rumors may only be words, but their edges are as sharp as a knife. 

I wonder these things now and then as I go about my workday and see the scenes played out again and again.  The difference between me and others with this affliction is that I feel the hurt very deeply, yet I smile through it and laugh as usual, as though the person with the sword is a fool and has no power over me, when in truth, sometimes they are tearing me apart on the inside.  Some are not as lucky as me to have that exterior shield. 

I don’t know where this is going.  I’m just off some days at what I see and what I hear and the heartlessness of others.  I wish I could be mean and less kind. I wish I could care less what others do, think, and say.  I wish I could step back and lose some of my emotions.  Instead, I will smile and laugh, and I will move forward one step at a time with no one the wiser of the struggles I may or may not be facing.  I will read more and paint more and I will write me.  Some days that is enough.

The real and in my face reality is that maybe I need a different day job.  There are too many emotions involved in family law.  After 20+ years of being enmeshed in it, maybe I simply can’t push it aside anymore. Remember that the next time you have “just one simple questions” for me about your divorce or child custody case or adoption that isn’t going well.  Please.  Please. Just don’t.


Monday, September 12, 2016

What's New in the World of Me?

What’s new?  

1.         In my writing world my fans may be happy to hear that Before the Dawn, the third book in the A Howl in the Night series is now officially in the hands of my publisher.  Once I have an idea of publication dates I will be sure to let you know.

2.            Homecoming is this week for the High School and that means, for the Tiny Dancer as well.  This is her first go around with this event.  I can’t decide what emotion it is that I am feeling.  We went dress shopping just the two of us and we had a great time.  I realized we do have some of the same tastes in clothes, which was a bit of a shocker.  I have also passed along my shoe obsession, which is good and bad.  There are worse things to spend your money on.  But then I realize that the last of my children is in high school and well it’s not sadness I feel it’s just more of a creeping loss of something I can’t put my finger on.  Maybe as I see her getting ready and heading out the door come Saturday, I will figure it out.  The shoes by the way are gorgeous.  It helps that she has the dancer legs to pull them off. 

3.         I will be closing down the garden this week.  For my first go around with container gardening, it went well in some areas and not so well in others.  I don’t think peas were a good idea.  They simply didn’t have the space necessary to grow well.  Beans were kinda the same thing.  The tomatoes and the peppers did the best.  The cucumbers started off really well and then just fizzled out for whatever reason.  I still got a good crop of them while they were going strong though so I’m not complaining, I will just figure out how to make them do better next year.  I wonder if I could pull off corn in a container type setting?  Anyone know?

4.         My grandson, also known as my Sunshine, spends Saturdays with me.  Has since he was born pretty much, as his mamma has had to work Tuesdays through Saturdays.  She has been able to finally get on a Monday through Friday schedule and that means, I wont get to see my Sunshine as much.  I know that being able to sleep in on a Saturday now will be like heaven, but I am not sure the trade off is worth it.  In my head it sounds great, in my heart, I don’t like it at all.  We will see how it all shakes out.   

That’s pretty much it for me.  With school back in session and a firm dance schedule in place, things are currently running like clockwork.  Zumba has begun again for me and I am working on ideas for promotions.  All in all things are going well.  Let’s see how long that will last…

Have a great week everyone. 


Monday, August 29, 2016

Summer's End

The end of summer is near.  I can feel it in the air.  I know so many people that wait for the coming fall and winter with excitement and glee.  I see the leaves changing colors and falling to the ground as the start of the hell that you all call winter.  The flowers are turning brown and wilting away leaving stumps of death behind.  The grass has been browning for a few weeks now, thanks to the wonderfully scorching hot sun, but even that will begin to shrivel up and die away. I am not ready for it.  Not that I’m ever really ready for the coming cold and rain and sleet and ice and snow and wind and and and.  Yes, I’m being a bit dramatic.  I don’t think anyone realizes how much I loathe the winter here in Ohio. 

So I am trying to come up with things to do INSIDE that will take my mind off the weather this fall and winter.  I am making a list.  I will be getting back to my painting.  A bit more learning over the winter and a bit more time to focus on it, will be nice.  I will finish up my drafts of several novels sitting on my desk.  Did I really say several?  Yes, I did.  It’s awful.  I have three novels sitting ready to move at this very moment.  I just haven’t.  That’s a start for me.  What else is there but to watch tv and clean?  I’m thinking on it. 

Labor Day is next week, which in my mind is the beginning of the end of the glorious warmth and sunshine for at least six months.  Oh the horror of it all!  How do you all while away the winter months?  I need some ideas.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Guest Post - Rebecca Besser

Today I want to welcome, Author, Rebecca Besser, to my blog.  She has a new book out this week, titled, Nurse Blood that we would like to share with you.

Rebecca Besser resides in Ohio with her wonderful husband and amazing son. They've come to accept her quirks as normal while she writes anything and everything that makes her inner demons squeal with delight. She's best known for her work in adult horror, but has been published in fiction, nonfiction, and poetry for a variety of age groups and genres. She's entirely too cute to be scary in person, so she turns to the page to instill fear into the hearts of the masses.

Nurse Blood Summary (Limitless Publishing):

Sonya Garret roams the bar scene hoping to steal the heart of an unsuspecting victim—literally…

Sonya, better known as Nurse Blood, is part of a team of lethal organ harvesters who seek out the weak to seduce, kill, and part out for profit on the black market. When Sonya meets Daniel McCoy, a young man recovering from a broken engagement, he’s just another kill to line her pockets with quick cash.

Agent David McCoy vows to find out how and why his twin brother Daniel disappeared…

Daniel’s body hasn’t been found, and the leads are slim to none, but it won’t stop David from dedicating his life to solving his brother’s case. When the evidence finally uncovers the shocking truth that Daniel’s disappearance is linked to organ harvesters, David knows his brother is most likely dead. But he’s determined to stop the villains’ killing spree before they strike again.

One last harvest is all Sonya and her team need to put their murderous past behind them…

A family with the rarest blood type in the world is the only thing standing between Sonya and retirement. David McCoy and the FBI are hot on their trail, though, and multiple targets make this the most complicated harvest yet. Will David unravel Sonya’s wicked plans in time to avenge his brother and save an innocent family? Or will Sonya cash in her final kill and escape for good?

Murder for profit stops for no man when you’re Nurse Blood.

Nurse Blood Excerpt:


The air inside the nightclub was hazy from smoke machines. Flashes of colored light cut through the swirls in beat with the pulsing music that shook the walls and the floor. The atmosphere was alive with movement―a mass of hot, swaying bodies bent on enjoying the moment. A monster waited in the depths of the darkness to bat her pretty eyes at someone and make them her prey.

The door of the establishment swung open to give way to three eager young men looking to have a good time and celebrate. The trio was instantly surrounded by dancing women. They made their way through the press of bodies to reach the bar.

Daniel forced himself not to scan the crowd for his ex-fiancée, April. But she was the least of his worries, as the real danger was a face he wouldn’t recognize.

Roy got their drinks while Hank and Daniel stood at a balcony that overlooked an even larger dance floor below. The smoke was thicker down there, and there were more lights. The dancers looked like they were paying sensual homage to their deity. The air was tainted with the aroma of perfume and alcohol; it burned the men’s nostrils and fueled their excitement for the revelry to come.

Daniel took a moment to text his twin brother, David, to let him know where they would be celebrating their shared birthday. He received a text back from David saying he was still an hour away.

Roy joined them with three shots and three cold bottles of beer, passing one of each to his friends. They downed the shots in one swallow before turning their attention to their beers.

Dave will be here in an hour or so,” Daniel announced after downing his shot.

Awesome—we’re gonna have a great time!” Hank yelled over the music.

As Roy took a drink of his beer, a petite, slim blonde grabbed his waist from behind. He jumped in surprise and turned, recognizing the young woman.

She tucked a finger into the front of his jeans, smiled at him, and tugged him away from his friends toward a table with another girl.

Roy looked back over his shoulder at his friends and shrugged.

That’s Lynn,” Hank yelled to Daniel. “They’ve been seeing each other for a while. And that’s her cousin Trisha—you don’t want to go there.”

Daniel nodded and looked around. The warming effect of the shot was spreading through his body, relaxing him. He felt less paranoid about running into April.

While he was looking over the crowd, a woman caught his eye. She was a tall, slim brunette, and she was beautiful. She was standing alone at the end of the bar. He watched her for a few moments, and when she looked around, their eyes met.

He smiled and looked away.

Hank noticed Daniel’s mild interest. He knew what his friend had been through recently and why he was gun-shy with women.

Go for it!” he yelled, nudging Daniel. “Have some fun!”

Daniel looked at his friend, took another swallow of beer, glanced at the woman—noticing she was still alone—and shrugged.

Hank laughed and gave Daniel a shove toward the bar, causing him to slam into two people who happened to be walking past. When he turned to them to apologize, he came face to face with the very woman he was hoping not to run into: April. The man she was with was leaning on her with all his weight while she struggled to hold him up.

Daniel’s heart clenched in his chest and his lungs seized up for a moment. He felt his hand tighten around the neck of his beer bottle. He wanted to slam it over the other man’s head, but he managed to restrain himself. He didn’t want her to know how much the sight of her with another man hurt him, so he put on a brave front.

Excuse the fuck out of me,” he said with a sadistic smile, raised the bottle in the air like he was toasting them, and then took a big swig of the brew. He was pleased with the shocked expression that spread across April’s face at his harsh greeting.

They didn’t say anything to Daniel, but focused back on each other and moved around him and deeper into the establishment.

Daniel glanced over to Hank, who was grinning from ear to ear.

He smiled at his friend, nodded, and forced himself to put one foot in front of the other until he made it over to the woman at the bar. While he walked he pretended not to notice that April had glanced back at him several times as she guided her drunken man to a table where he could sit down. He was determined to show April she wasn’t the only woman in the world. He was going to prove to himself and her that he was over the breakup.

Hi, I’m Daniel!” he yelled when he reached the woman, leaning toward her a little so she could hear him as a new song started to play.

Grace!” she yelled back.

They smiled at each other.

The couple chatted for a while about nothing important, since it was too loud to carry on a serious conversation, and ordered drink after drink as they stood at the bar. Daniel’s emotional tension eased little by little with every drink. He became more and more relaxed, and friendlier and friendlier with Grace. Before he knew what was happening, they were pressed up against each other while they conversed so they could hear each other better.

Let’s get out of here,” Grace said. She kissed him and reached down between them to rub his crotch.
Normally Daniel would be shocked and uneasy by such a gesture so soon after meeting a woman, but he’d had enough drinks not to care about how respectable she was or wasn’t being.

He nodded in agreement and looked around for his friends, frowning.

I have to tell my friends I’m leaving,” he said, taking a step away from Grace.

Oh, don’t worry about it,” Grace said, rubbing his crotch again. “They’ll figure it out. Besides, you can call them later and they can pick you up from my place.”

That sounded reasonable so he followed her out to the parking lot. The night was clear and felt cool after the heat from the population of patrons inside the nightclub.

They stumbled together through the parking lot and paused to make out, pressed against the side of her car for a couple minutes before they finally separated their bodies to get in.

Daniel had the passenger’s side door open and was about to climb inside when his cell phone beeped, notifying him of a text. He stopped, stood up straight beside the car, and pulled his wallet out of his back pocket by mistake. He reached into his other back pocket and extracted his cell phone. He frowned and squinted to focus on the tiny, bright screen that said David was only a block away.

What are you doing?” Grace asked.

I can’t go with you,” he said with a sigh. “Sorry. I—”

He felt a sharp pain in the side of his neck. He reached up to figure out what had hurt him and spun around at the same time, dropping his cell phone and wallet to the asphalt parking lot.

Grace was standing behind him holding an empty syringe.

I’m sorry,” she said, “but you have to come with me.”

He tried to shove her away, but his limbs wouldn’t do what he wanted them to. His legs gave out from beneath him as the world blurred into a black blob of nothing.

Grace shoved Daniel’s tall frame into the passenger seat when he started to fall, smacking his head on the door frame. She quickly picked his feet up from the ground and spun him so she could get him all the way into the car.

She heard laughing as a couple made their way through the parking lot a few rows over, so she didn’t take the time to pick up what Daniel had dropped.

Grace shut the passenger door and ran around to the driver’s side of her car. She scanned the parking lot as she pulled out, not seeing anyone close-by. She’d been careful, watching for people as they’d headed outside, but the distant couple had snuck up on them. Luckily they hadn’t come close enough to see what she was up to. She tensed slightly when she had to pass another vehicle as she pulled from the lot out onto the street, but the man was looking in the opposite direction and didn’t even glance their way.

Once she was out of the parking lot and a couple blocks away, she pulled out her cell phone and called Roger.

Hey,” she said into the phone. “I have fresh meat…”

Where to find this book:
(Nurse Blood goes up on the Limitless website for pre-order Aug 13th and officially releases Aug 23rd.)
Limitless Publishing “Coming Soon” Link: http://www.limitlesspublishing.net/product-category/pre-orders/

To learn more about Rebecca visit her Website, or find her on FacebookTwitterGoodReads, and/or follow her Blog!

©Rebecca Besser & Limitless Publishing, 2016. All rights reserved.

Monday, August 8, 2016

Writing Time – Life Struggles

I always have huge plans.  I want to get up early and go for a run.  I want to spend two hours a day writing or editing or working on something writing oriented.  I want to make a nice dinner and have it all cleaned up by Seven so that I can go for a walk. 

These things never happen the way I set out.  It all starts off harmless enough.  I can’t get my butt out of bed early to save my life.  I’m tired.  My grand plans of going for a run are more funny than anything as I don’t actually like to run.  I should and I need to get off my butt a bit more, but I’m tired.

Then the idea of finding two whole hours to dedicate to writing – well that is just laughable.  I work a full time job to pay the bills.  So that cuts out 45 hours a week right off the top.  I am a mother so between mom chores and running back and forth to activities, you can cut out another 20 hours of the week right there, maybe more…depending on the time of year it could be a lot more.  Then there is the fact that I am a wife and homemaker so cut out another 15 hours right there doing household chores such as laundry and cleaning and cooking.  Some days I’m lucky to check my writers email let along focus on any real writing or editing or whatnot.  So sad.  I hear all the time how if it’s important you make time.  I’m seriously trying.  The things that take up my life aren’t cutable.  They aren’t “wants” they are “needs” of the family.  You can’t really cut out a need.  You simply can’t. 

Then there is the idea that I want to cook a good fantastic meal.  Yeah, that doesn’t happen either as I end up with like 45 minutes to cook in and you can’t do a wonderful exciting meal in that amount of time.  No you can’t.  So you get stir fry or fried chicken or grilled something or other. If you are really lucky, I crock potted something and that is actually a pretty fancy meal now and then, but I have to be awake enough in the morning to get that going before my life starts hacking away at the day.    

I love life.  Well, most days if we are being honest.  Some days suck, but that’s life.  If I could change anything what would be it be?  Nothing.  I love and I am loved by my family.  I have a full and fulfilling life that sometimes takes me away from other things I want to do, but what would I give up?  Not one thing. 

I am editing.  Slowly and surely, but only about half an hour to 45 minutes a day, but I am editing.  It’s all good. 

Tomorrow I am getting up early and maybe not going for a run, but I could go on a bike ride instead?  Don’t laugh too hard at me.  I am sure when the alarm goes off early I will hit snooze and berate myself all day long for not getting up, because again, I’m tired. 

Have a great week.  Next week I will have Author, Rebecca Besser on my blog.  Make sure to come over and visit, comment, or share.  

Monday, August 1, 2016

The End of Summer is Near

Yes, it really is.  Once I start seeing back to school commercials and sales on paper and pencils, I know it's time to get back to the job at hand, which means, blogging.

So how I have been spending my time?

1.  We went with the Tiny Dancer to Nashville to compete at our Nationals.  Sadly, I am not a fan of Nashville.  I didn't have a great time.  There wasn't much to do with a teenager other than shop and go to a few attractions.  Granted the Johnny Cash Museum was pretty good, but that was the highlight of the trip.  The hotel (The Gaylord - FYI) was kept so dang cold that everything felt wet and damp.  I went outside in the 100 degree heat just to dry off and warm up.

2.  We took a weekend trip out to Boston where I spent a fun day in Salem.  We did all the touristy things such as troll all the witch crafty stores and went to the museums.  It was a good day.  I had a Tarot reading and all in all it was good.  I was told that my day job is killing my creative side so I need to look into making some changes.  That was weird as who out there knows me as a writer or creative?  I enjoyed the trip even if it was a little quick and way over commercialized.

3.  The Tiny Dancer was accepted into a training program with the Joffrey Ballet Company.  She's been with them a while now.  I am ready for her to come home.  I know its all in the reach for training, but I miss my girl.  Horribly.  She's learned many things, including how to do her own laundry, and how to have fun while doing the chore.  She's a hoot.

She also sent me a few fun shots just to lighten my day.

School starts back up in 17 days.  She has schedule pick up day next week.  I need to get her re-fitted for jeans that fit, (Those Darn Legs!) and find some shirts for her that are not Twenty One Pilots.  I think her entire wardrobe right now is TOP shirts, a bit too short jeans and Nike Pro Shorts.  I will be broke soon.

But now that summer is coming to an end soon, I am back working and working hard.  The third book in my A Howl in the Night series has been fully drafted and is now being edited.  It will be in my publishers hands asap as I have several readers clamoring for it.  I will be back blogging weekly now, so stay tuned.

Have a great week.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

The Art of Tipping

I know everyone has their own stance on tipping.  Sometimes the debate gets heated and I admit, entertaining as all heck on-line.  Why is this on my mind?  Because it’s getting ridiculous.

My thoughts and opinions.  Notice I said “My”.

No, tipping is not required. Sorry, it's not. Yes, I completely understand that tipped persons get a lower minimum wage.  However, tipping is a show of a job well done.  If you do your job well, with a smile, I’m likely to tip very well.  If you are friendly and helpful, I will tip well.  If you check my needs, refill glasses, bring me napkins as you see I have a child in tow, and will likely be making a mess, I will tip you extraordinarily well. 

No, I do not hold my server or wait staff person responsible for the quality of my food.  That is the cook’s job, and their responsibility. 

No, I do not hold my server responsible for the restaurant; it’s cleanliness or whatever else.  That is the manager’s job and responsibility.

However, if you don’t come over to my table within 10 minutes of me sitting down to at least check on us and get my drinks, I’m going to be annoyed, but I will still tip.  If you take our order, and I never ever see you again until its time for my check, I’m not going to be pleased.  If your only job is to take my order, what am I tipping you for? I still will, but it may not be the 15% they  think they deserve.  If I have an issue with my food and you give me a hard time about it, you will be lucky to get any percentage of a tip.  It takes a lot for me to complain.  I will usually just not eat my food before complaining, but in the instance that I actually do say something, and you make me feel like crap over it?  Or you sigh and yank the plate off the table and stomp away like a child, yeah, I’m not tipping you crap. 

Plus what is with the tipping of carry out at restaurants?  No, really.  I don’t understand this at all.  They take an order, sometimes one placed on line, so you aren’t even talking to anyone.  It’s bagged up and waiting for you.  What am I tipping for?  I’ve already paid for it by phone or online, all I’m doing is picking it up. Am I required to tip?  Really?

What say you all?  

Monday, April 18, 2016

Writer's Block...no, not really

It’s April 16, do you know where your taxes are?  Mine, thankfully are done and have been done for a whole week.  We didn’t procrastinate quite that long this year.  I know some of you are currently at the moment I am typing this, furiously clicking through PDF versions of your return trying to get them done before the deadline.  I feel for you.  Sincerely. 

So, since our minds are currently over loaded with income and interest and numbers from hell, I will keep this blog short so that those that need to, can get back to work!  We don’t want any penalties and interest being allocated this year. 

I know you are dying to know how the work is coming on book three in the Howl series.  Well.  Actually.  I’m stuck.  Yes really.  I hate killing off characters.  I know that sometimes we have to do it, as that is what the story calls for, but I hate to do it all the same.  I am staring at death in my book at the moment and feel stuck because I don’t want to move forward and face it. 

What will I do then?  I think I will start writing and work my way forward in the book to the point where my outline is stuck.  Maybe I will feel better about it once I have it all set up and see that there is nothing else to be done for it, but to bring on the end to someone. 

I’ve had to kill off characters in the past and some break my heart even if they are in fact the “bad” guy.  I wonder if that is just me?  I know some people think we writers laugh evilly when we do in a character, but I don’t.  I’m not saying I have never, but in general I don’t.  There was one character in my Shadow Dancer series that I enjoyed their demise.  I did.  I’m not telling who, if you haven’t read the books I don’t want to ruin it for you. 

Is it only me that is conflicted in death in a book or is it an issue all writers have to face?  Regardless I will get through the “stuck” and move forward one way or another. 

Monday, April 4, 2016

Blog Schedules

For the better part of the year I try to blog once a week, usually on Mondays.  I tend to slow down during the summer months to twice a month or every other week, as I get really crazy busy during the summer months. I also tend to go to a every other week once the holiday winter season gets moving for the same reason, as well as all I can think about is whining about the cold and no-one really wants to hear about that. 

I know it’s not quite summer yet, but I will be starting the summer slow down now.  Why?  I know how my blogs will be missed terribly, but I am almost finished with the outline for Book Three in the Howl in the Night series, which mean I want to get started on the first draft as soon as possible.  First drafts for me tend to take up a lot of my free time.  I only have about one hour a day to write and I don’t want to take up that one hour every week.  I am very excited about where this book is going and I can’t wait to get started. 

I am still working on a title for the book.  I like to have a nice title in mind before I begin but after I have the outline.  I don’t have one yet.  Twilight ruined a lot of good moon type titles for me.  Darn it all!  I am thinking along the lines of “The Blood Moon” or something dark like that.  It would be fitting if I stay with the outline I have going.  Ooo I just thought of another option.  "Darkness before the Dawn".  Oh, I like that.  I think we have a winner.  I will give that title a whirl for a bit and see what I think. 

As I was saying, I will be off and on the new few months as I work my way through the new book as well as get loaded down with my summer and events.  Have a great week everyone.  I’ll be back soon.  I promise.

Monday, March 28, 2016

Guilty Pleasures?

I find a lot of people like to talk about the literary masterpieces they have read.  The mean ornery side of myself likes to poke sometimes at these discussions, as sadly a lot of times the people may have read the books (Pride and Prejudice, Wuthering Heights, Moby Dick) but they didn’t really read them.  They read the words and the sentences, but they have no idea what they were about.  Sadly, that was how I felt reading Wuthering Heights.  What the heck was that melancholy book of sadness about really?  I have no idea! 

It’s not that those types of books aren’t worth reading. It’s that I don’t think reading those types of books makes you any better than someone who hasn’t.  Maybe more patient as in my opinion it takes a lot of brainpower and patience to get through some of the older fiction.  The Lion in Winter, for instance…there were scenes in that play that I swear I had to read several times just to figure out what was going on. 

So…what types of books do I read?  Everything.  Anything.  Fiction.  Non-fiction.  Romance.  Horror.  Childrens.  Teens.  Mystery.  You name I will read it if I’m in the mood for it.  I have gone through Bronte, and Shakespeare, and Stephanie Myers, and King, and Rice.  I read everything.  Poor amazon has no idea what to recommend me as I read whatever I’m in the mood for.  I once ordered a book based upon seeing the cover from a man reading the book at a Panda Express.  Yes, really.

I have gone through an entire romance section at the library just by going in and grabbing a handful of books at a time without looking at the covers or the titles.  I started at one end and worked my way through the rack.  I am voracious when it comes to reading.  I tend to read two books at a time.  One fiction and one non-fiction.  The fiction is for fun.  The non, is for education.  I am currently in a history mood.  I have realized my historical knowledge is severely lacking.  I’m correcting that.  Russian history is a prime example.  Aside from where Russia is located, I couldn’t tell you much about it, but for what I saw in a Rocky movie.  Sad, I know. 

I guess what I am trying to say here is that you should read what you want to read, not what you think you should be reading.  What fun is that?  If you like romance, enjoy it!  If you want a good scare, go to it.  Don’t let the adult world guilt you into reading.  Read what you want.  That’s it. 

Monday, March 21, 2016

Pinkeye, the Plague, Competitions, and the Tiny Dancer

It’s been a long week plus a few days for me.  That law that says:  When it rains, it pours, is more than simply true.  I had my share of the rain now to last me quite some time, thank you very much!  I’m ready for a bit of sunshine.

So?  What happened?  Sit down, and enjoy the tale I am about to tell.  Friday last, I woke up with a pinkish watery eye.  My brain stares at it and simply denounces it.  I don’t have time for pink eye.  I just don’t.  The tiny dancer has a dance get together that evening and although I am not much for social gatherings, we like the mom that holds the event and we wanted to squeeze it in.  Even if it was just to drop by and say hello.  Plus, we have an extra practice to get the tiny dancer to, and a dress rehearsal coming up on Monday, and we are leaving for out of town on Thursday evening.  I don’t have time to get sick! 

Thinking maybe it was just an irritated type of thing, I put in a few drops of clear eyes and thought, there!  All good.  That would be a resounding no.  Not all good. It continued to get worse as the day progressed.  I decided I would stop off to the “minute clinic”.  It was pinkeye after all.  How hard can it be to diagnose, eh?  Well, an hour later, standard eye drops in hand; I was out the door and told I was contagious for at least 24-48 hours.  So, no dance get together.  Tiny Dancer would be upset, but there wasn’t much else I could do.   

Saturday and Sunday progressed and my eye was not getting better.  It fact, it got exceptionally worse.  It swelled and turned the color of red you don’t want to see in an eye, and continually cried.  I was starting to look like a gross zombie in the making.  The eye was not doing well.  Monday arrived and with it, I decided I needed to get to the doctor.  Add in I had to go to work, the tiny dancer had a dress rehearsal and I felt like crap.  My face hurt, and my neck was swollen and I just didn’t have time to go.  But I didn’t have much choice.  So, I went to work, got done all that I could and then took the afternoon off.  There was nothing else to be done.  I hate taking off work!  I get to the doctor and I’m told, I’m having quite the reaction to the drops, and they are swapping them out to a different (more expensive of course) type.  I am not to use the other drops ever again.  LOL.  But what about how I look?  It’s not that I am vain about how I look.  It’s that I don’t like being scary to look at to others.  When people are blanching when they get a good glimpse of me and taking a step away, it tends to be hard to take for me.  She was nice enough and sympathetic enough to give me another drop to try to deal with the swelling at least.  Then I am again, off and with new eye drops.  Which by the way, burn like hell fire when I have to put them in.  I mean, it’s a real practice in patience and forcing myself to open my eye wide enough to get them in at this point, as it’s real pain.  And, it sucks. 

That evening, I have to get to the dress rehearsal for the tiny dancer, and oh joy of joy, Kasich and Romney are going to be there.  I am expecting the worst with security and crowds, esp. looking as I look a bit like a crack head at that point, but in the end, all I had to deal with was one grumpy police officer and that was about it. We were sealed up in the auditorium away from the masses so it wasn’t as bad as I expected. 

The week progressed, and my eye doesn’t seem to be getting better and by Tuesday evening I realize I’m getting sick too.  Most likely I picked up a germ from either the minute clinic or from the visit to the doctor on Monday.  GREAT!  By Wednesday, I didn’t want to wake up.  That children’s medicine commercial where the little girl in laying in bed thinking:  It will hurt if I swallow, it will hurt if I swallow, was going through my head.  And of course what do you do?  You swallow.  And yes, it hurts.  I do get out of bed, I do put in my torturous eye drops, and I get in the shower, where I have a mini breakdown.  My eyes hurt, my throat hurts, my neck and shoulders hurt, my ears are clogged and I just can’t take anything more.  Plus, I have to leave to go out of town the next day!  Thankfully, the pity-party doesn’t last that long.  I pull it together, put in more drops, take some extra strength cold and flu meds, and I go to work and get through another day. 

Thursday, we get out of town with the tiny dancer and head to Cleveland.  I’m dosed with every med imaginable at this point.  Friday classes for the tiny dancer, and I’m smiling to the other dance moms and pretending all is great.  My eye is finally starting to look better.  Not great, but the swelling is abating, and the seeping is dwindling. It’s still red as hell, but it’s getting better.  My throat feels awful, but again, I’m smiling. 

Saturday is the competition.  I want to lie in bed all day and not move.  But I am feeling a bit better.  I can’t decide if it’s due to the “Fake it Until you Make It” I’ve been playing at, or if I am finally on the mend and the plague from hell is making it’s way out of my system.  The tiny dancer has a good first competition. Some great moments, some not so great, but all in all they pulled it off relatively well.  Poor girl had to put up with a not as patient momma as usual during the stress of the day, but I was trying.  Out of six dances, one took 1st in their division, one took 2nd, and one took 3rd.  The 1st place also took 4th place overall in their age group, which wow.  For the first event of the year, and at a place that is hard to impress, we did well.  Granted we were out until 1 a.m., but it was a good day for the dancers.

Sunday arrived and aside from a few classes we were on our way home by 4.  My ears are still clogged up now and then, but my eye is almost clear and my throat, thank GOD is finally feeling better.  Just in time for…my husband to get it.  Sorry about that, Dear!  My bad. 

So, that’s how my week went and why I decided to skip the blog on Monday.  Frankly, I didn’t have time, but also, I couldn’t see very well out of that eye thanks to it being so swollen.  I am back to my normal self by about 85%.  I am not quite complete, but from where I was last week at this time, I am way ahead.  This week will be cake!  Hope you all had a better week.  I’m off to see what damage I can do.  My advice for the week?  Take care, stay healthy, and don’t touch your face. 

Monday, March 7, 2016

Moods of the Writer...aka Me.

This last week has been pretty up and down for me on the writing front.  I don’t know if all writers get this way or if it is just me, but I get stuck in the mind set where I’m unsure of myself.  I wonder what I am doing wasting my time and energy. 

Take for instance my horror story.  I think it is pretty well done.  Ready to be submitted out.  It’s a complete story, with a nice story arc, and three main sections, of the beginning, middle, and end.  I don’t really pay attention to word count until the story is done.  Well, it’s done and it has a word count of only 47,500 words.  That is a bit short for an adult novel.  I spent a bit of time trying to figure out a way to plump it up another 12,000 words at least, but yeah, I’m not coming up with anything that doesn’t seem forced and stupid.  I was feeling a little bummed out.  What was I going to do with it?  Was it a waste of my time?  How could I have written a complete story and have it be so short on words. 

I then, got my Amazon recommendation and saw on my list a novella book.  Well, guess what I decided to do with my horror story?  Turn it into a novella!  Heck, maybe I will self publish it for cheap and move on, but at least I have options.  I got so bogged down on the “Oh no!” that I couldn’t see a way around it. 

I was feeling a bit better about my word count issue and then while I was on Amazon, I checked out my books and saw a new review came up for The Full Moon Rises!  And, it was a good review.  That made my day even better. 

Then late last night, I was messaged and asked when book 3 was coming out and how soon as they and another reader were anxiously waiting for it!!!!  How nice is that?  I have fans!   

So, that’s the cycle of me as a writer, I go from I suck, to okay, I can make it work, to look at me, I’m great.  Tomorrow I will be back in the “I suck” department, but for today, I’m feeling pretty good. 

Monday, February 29, 2016

The Spire

Hello.  Yes, I know I missed last week.  I was having a bit of a computer issue on Monday and was not able to upload.  However, everything is back up and running.

Today I want to tell you about my new exciting little gadget called:  The Spire.

The Spire is a bit like a fitbit, as in it tracks your steps and your calories burned, etc. However, the reason I decided to try a spire instead of the fitbit is that it has an added perk that also tracks your focus, your calm, and…your tension/stress.  I have been using it for almost two weeks now and here is what I think of the product. 

My review: 

The product is different from many others in that you wear it on your person not your wrist.  You can wear it on your waistband or you can attach it to your bra, which is how I use it.  I thought it would bother me and be uncomfortable, but in fact it is not.  The fitbit I wore on my wrist and it bugged the poop out of me all day long.  It would get sweaty and was in the way while on the computer.  I never did get used to it and I wore it for a long time (almost a year).  The spire, I actually find myself forgetting I have it on.  I think the reason it is so comfortable is the design with the use of the stone.  The stone warms to your body temperature, but as it isn’t plastic, you don’t sweat under it.  However, I can’t sleep in it, which is okay as it does NOT track sleep, which I actually do miss from the fitbit.  Maybe they can add that in someday. 

The step calculator seems to be accurate.  I can’t tell if the other technology is correct or not.  I would guess that it seems pretty accurate, as when I check it while I am working it is telling me I am “focused” or while I am reading I am “calm”.  The tension indicator is why I decided to try the spire.  I was interested to see how it worked.  I find it somewhat funny, although I would have to say it does appear accurate as well.  When I am stressing for two minutes the spire will vibrate and buzz me telling me to take a break, a breath, and to clear my mind and try to calm.  It will surprise me most the time, as when I am stressing I am not thinking about the spire.  But the little buzz gives me a heads up and gives me an opportunity to try to settle down. 

When am I finding myself getting zapped the most?  Usual things like difficult moments at work, being approached by a stranger, and dealing with family issues.  The surprises were: pick ups from dance for the tiny dancer; at the grocery store while checking out; at the home and garden show when approached by hard sale people; and the most surprising of all…going out to get the mail from the box (LOL!).  I gave that one a bit of thought and I think it all comes down to the change from living out in the middle of nothing to living in a development.  At the old house I never saw anyone.  I mean, never!  Now every time I walk out the door there is someone out there.  Which is not a bad thing at all, it just takes a bit of getting used to by me, a very shy, very introverted individual. 

Yesterday, I was outside with the tiny dancer as she was working on a few tricks, when a couple stopped to say hello and introduce themselves.  Very nice people, not pushy, not over friendly, just a hello, welcome to the area moment and the spire was buzzing me like crazy.  Simple moments like that, when I get a poke from the spire surprise me.  I know I am shy and nervous around strangers, but I had no idea I was that tense and stressed over it.  It’s been an eye opener for me.  I can see I have some work to do with myself in trying to deal with stress. 

So, all in all I am very happy with the Spire.  It was worth the money and the purchase.  How often do you get to say that? 

Monday, February 15, 2016

Surviving the Winter Blues

Winter makes me sad.  When the sun is out, even when it’s cold and frosty, I do really well.  I feel good and happy and motivated, but lately it’s been gray and gray and gray, along with the cold and frosty and icy. 

I try to beat the lows and stay positive.  First, I read.  Nothing can transport you out of the gloom and cold like a good book.  I tend to read a lot more in the winter as I don’t go anywhere, and I don’t do much of anything as I refuse to go outside in the cold.  I have loads of time to plop into a book.  I am not a huge TV person.  So this works well for me.

Second, although I am not a huge TV person there are a few things that I will watch.  I have very recently found the Outlander series on Starz.  I have read a lot of the books in the series.  I think I still have one or two more to go, but they are long, long reads, and I like to enjoy them, therefore, I tend to put them on hold until I have a nice long break between projects to drift into them.  Anyway, they have started a series on Starz based from these books.  They have found great actors to portray the characters and the show is wonderful.  It’s an adventure and a love story all in one.  Such a great find.  If you have read the books or even know of the series, I recommend it.  However, be prepared as there is a spot of nudity now and then. If you have little eyes at home, I would watch it after they are in bed or out of the house.  Just to be safe.  After watching the Game of Thrones, and being shocked out of my knickers with some of the adult aspects, I’m wary of premium channels and the series they put out.  If it says MA, it really is MA.  FYI. 

Thirdly, I am editing.  Although I hate to edit, it does get my mind off how much I hate the snow and cold and onto how much I hate to edit.  Ha!  I am through the big harsh edit of my horror story.  I know. I am thrilled too!  Now I just need to review it and give it one more good read, and then I will have to figure out what to do with it.  I have another story already written that I need to do that big edit on as well, which I will move onto as soon as I finish the horror.  I’m actually working. 

So you see, the winter although I am not a fan, is good for some things.  How do you pass the winter months?  Do you enjoy the snow?  I don’t understand this myself, but I have heard of people that love the season.  Obviously, I am not one of them.

Have a great week everyone.  I will be dreaming of spring.  It’s almost here.   

Monday, February 8, 2016

Reading Book Reviews - My Opinion Only

When I'm looking to get new books to read, I find myself checking out the reviews.  Some you can tell are just family and friends gushing.  Some are good and helpful, and then others you can tell are just unhappy people that don’t like anything. 

The ones that annoy me the most though, are the ones that are useless.  They don’t talk about the book itself. Instead they focus on small grammar issues or “mistakes” that they found or how they don’t believe the story.    

I was recently recommended a book by Amazon.  Nothing new there, I check my recommendations often.  I like to read biographies.  Any kind usually as long as there is a story there.  This recommended book was a story of a woman who had left the Amish community and why.  Sounded decent, so, I checked it out and the reviews were annoying to say the least.  If I went by the reviews, I never would have read it.  There were complaints about how badly it was written.  Reviews on mistakes found.  Reviews on how the story was false, because the reviewer lived with the Amish and they knew what the author was saying could not be true (since when are the Amish on the internet?).  I bought it anyway.  It was on sale and even if it was as bad as the reviews were saying, it was worth a shot for $.99. 

First, I read a lot.  I don’t mean that I read a few books a year.  I mean I read a lot, at least a book a week and sometimes more.  I don’t watch a lot of tv, instead I chose to read.  In all those books, I can say, that very few are perfection.  What people don’t seem to understand is that a book goes first through the author and their own personal edit.  Then it goes through the publisher and their edit.  Then it probably goes through a beta reader or two and their edit.  A ton of people are searching through books before they go to print and they still miss stuff.  It’s not a deal breaker.  If you can’t just skip over it and replace it with the corrected word, period, nuance, then that is your issue and not the issue of the author. 

Seeking perfect in everything just makes you look petty and angry.  Life is not perfection.  It’s full of mistakes.  If a book is riddled with errors, well that’s one thing.  Then you can complain.  If there is one or two or even a small handful of boo-boos, so what?  Move on.  It’s not the end of your world.  The fact that people take time out of their lives to blast a book because it had an error in it, tells me that someone has too much time on their hands to waste and they need to get a hobby.  If they are writers themselves, well be sure to let me know what your works are so that I can scour through them as well in search of mistakes to blast you with. 

The people that try to discredit an author are another brand of petty.  This is usually in the form of personal biographies or life stories.  They like to call the author a liar or wrong as if they KNOW what that person lived through and survived.  That they KNOW how it really was.  Ugh.  When you have lived their life day for day; moment by moment; then you can tell their story.  Until that time, you are more than welcome to tell your own story.  You can put the time and energy into writing a book. 

So, what did I think of the book on the Amish woman.  I enjoyed it.  It was long.  Way longer than I expected.  I felt she put her heart and soul into that book.  I could feel her frustrations, and her fears.  I could sense her courage and her determination.  Yes, there were a few mistakes.  Not a ton, but enough to note.  Did I believe her accounting 100%.  I believe it is her accounting.  I believe it is how she sees her life.  Whether it is true in all Amish communities, I wouldn’t know.  What I do know is that this was her story.  That’s good enough for me.  Someone else can write their own and it may be a complete opposite.  I understand that all experiences are colored by our own life and mistakes and drive.  My world is seen in a different view than someone else that may be traveling along with me.  Doesn’t mean my views are wrong.

Be careful when you review a book.  This is someone’s hard work.    

Monday, February 1, 2016

Settling In

We’ve been in our new house a little over three months now.  We’ve settled in pretty much, I’d say.  I, for the most part, do like the new digs.  I am enjoying my new office more than I can say, esp. as there is a door that I can close myself in and the world out.  My husband has been very sweet, and he installed a tv, with cable, and DVD player, so that while I am “supposed” to be working I can also have the back ground noise of the tv.  I can’t use it while I am writing as it’s too distracting, but while painting or while sewing, it’s very nice to have it there. 

I also love, absolutely love, my four seasons room.  It stays nice and warm, thanks to great windows, and the sun is able to shine in whenever it is out.  I have made it through winter so far in much better spirits thanks to that room, I am sure.

This is the first house we have had natural gas.  We have a wonderful fireplace that we can start with the push of a button.  It’s pretty, it’s warm, and it’s clean.  What more can you ask for? 

There are a lot of other things that I like, but I’m not going into them all.  Sadly, there are also several things that I am struggling to get used to.  Coming from the rural environment, I find the neighborhood a lot noisier.  At the old house I could go outside and it was quite.  Aside from the wooded creatures and nature, the silence was very calming.  Now I can hear the cars coming and going from the roads outside the neighborhood.  There is a train somewhere nearby that drives me insane.  It’s not that it’s loud.  In fact, if you are busy doing something you don’t usually hear it, but the moment I want to sit in silence and recoup from the stress of a day, there it is, with it’s horn blowing.  I can’t just go outside and enjoy the quiet now, as there isn’t any.  I hate it.  I have been assured I will get used to the sounds and they will fade to the background like the nature sounds at the other house.  I have to say, I’d much prefer the sound of crickets and squirrels to the cars, and people, and trains, and whatever else there is. 

I also feel cold in my house a lot more.  I don’t know why.  The gauge says it’s 72, but I swear it feels like 62.  We replaced the old gauge with a new one thinking maybe it was faulty.  It’s not.  I don’t like being cold.  I’m finding myself in slipper socks and a jacket in my own home the moment the sun goes down.  What the heck?  I keep thinking I should just turn up the heat, but I don’t want to.  It says it’s 72, which should be plenty warm, right?  Right?

So far though, that’s all I can complain about.  There are things that bug me, like the kitchen counter tops.  I am not a fan of dark granite.  It always looks dirty.  I’m getting used to that.  The house seems to be a bit dusty, but I think that’s due to the vents needing cleaned, which I will look into in the spring.  Mostly though, we are settling in.  I’m content with the move.  The house is lovely.  Seren is happy and making new friends every day.  I’m closer to the office and town and yet aren’t right in the middle of it all. It was a good move.  One we should have done maybe a bit sooner, but better late than never. 

Until we are ready to downsize, I never want to move again.  So what’s next for us?  Well, the tiny dancer was promised a dance room at the new house, as she had to give her’s up from the old.  We are starting the basement and the new dance room, this weekend.  I’m not looking forward to that.  

Monday, January 25, 2016

Review - The Full Moon Rises

I am very happy to share a new review of my latest release, The Full Moon Rises (A Howl in the Night, Book 2).


The Full Moon Rises
Courtney Rene
By Jeffrey Ross 

5 stars out of 5

The Full Moon Rises: A howl In the Night Book 2 by Courtney Rene continues the dramatic life of Abby, a nearly seventeen-year-old shapeshifter who tries to balance her wolf and human “selves.”

This unique coming-of-age narrative details Abby’s struggles with her own special nature and the patriarchal wolf clan to which she belongs-- and climaxes as she confronts the wolf-destroying group The Hunterz.

A successful strain of feminism persists in this second book of the Howling as strong-willed Abby exerts her emerging personality and successfully defines her relationships with humans and shapeshifters.

I only hope a third book is in the works for this gritty, naturalistic, and enticing series.


Very nice review, eh?  Thank you, Mr. Ross!  Woo hoo.  Now this leaves me with a quandary...several actually.  One, how soon can I start book three, as I have several projects I'm currently working on; and two, how to finish up the series with action, excitement, and all that comes with it, but not make it too busy and overwhelming and stupid.  I will have to let you know what I decide.  

First up to finish though is my current WIP with a working title of Possessions.  I am almost done with the edit.  Almost...but if you know me at all, you know I am a huge procrastinator when it comes to editing.