Friday, October 30, 2015

Happy Day Before Halloween!!

Hello lovely readers! It is almost Halloween! This is one of my favorite holidays. I think in a lot of ways, I even like it more than Christmas. Normally, I have my place all decked out, and an awesome costume prepared, creepy Halloween music queued and so much excitement!

This year has been... different. Part of it, I suspect is that my boys are starting to "outgrow" it as many do, save yours truly. They weren't interested in helping decorate. My oldest just wants to stay home and hand out candy so he "doesn't really care about a costume".

Even my husband is not feeling it this year. The last two years at work he has won best costume contest, but just feels like there is too much pressure. At the last minute he ordered a knock off version of his recreation of " The Dude"  I thought his Deseret Industries throw together for the Dude two years ago was better. It was more creative.

Pumpkin carving was kinda cool, but our pumpkins died in days. So depressing.

I tried watching scary movies with my boys to get in the mood. (OK, to be fair, in our world of scary that meant Scooby Doo, and the 1984 Monster Squad, despite their vehement calls for Walking Dead, which they still think I am a meanie for not letting them watch.) But still, nothing...

I got this great album from my friend Daniel, called Heretica: The Night Keep. You can check it out on his website
All purchases this month, he contributes to Scares that Care. Daniel is incredibly talented. I love his music! He was generous enough to let me use some of his music for The Hunter's trailer, and I will probably be using some pieces in the audiobook once I get that worked out. (I know, I have been working on that for almost a year... long story about learning new skills!)

And still, nothing. I have not decorated, I am going to half-ass last year's costume, I will probably play Daniel's awesome album on Halloween night while my oldest and I hand out candy.

I want to blame the fact that Christmas decorations were out before I even got to decorate for Halloween, but I think it is more than that. I need to get my mojo back.

What are your plans for Halloween? Let me know in the comments below.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Poetry Corner: Rejection

I loved you                                                              
and you rejected me.
I don't know why.

Why did you hurt me?
Why couldn't you love me?

Was I so awful?
Was I so bad?
Did I make you cringe so?

Am I not pretty?
Am I not nice?

Am I not good enough for your grace?
Do you so hate to look at my face?

My questions are infinite,
You cannot comprehend.
You hurt me so badly,
I can barely stand.

My pride is damaged,
my self image shot
But the thing that hurts most,
the most tender part?
Is that above all things,
you broke my heart.

I wrote this after I did something really sweet and romantic for a guy in a play with me. I bought him flowers in a clear box, and added candy and a card telling him how amazing I thought he was as an actor and a singer. It was pretty innocent. I didn't even ask him out. Just a fan gift at best.

We hardly knew each other. He was a year older than me. It was our first play together, and we weren't even in scenes together. But when that boy sang, oh how he melted my whole world. Going back I look at pictures and dude was a straight up goober. He probably blew me off because he had no idea how to deal with it. And later I found out he was gay.

But at the time, I had no understanding why he was avoiding me, wouldn't look at me, and basically pretended I didn't exist. If me just admiring a guy could lead to such disgust, how awful must I be?

Silly kids.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Writing Exercise- First Person Free for All

I am taking Jeff Goins TribeWriters course and one of the first exercises is in finding our writing voice. We were supposed to do a free writing exercise in the first person. This is what I came up with:

I am a mother, I am a wife, I am a friend, I am a daughter, I am a sister. I am me. Sometimes I lose sight of that last one.

I am a dreamer, I am a realist, I am opinionated, and I love to learn. I am eclectic, I am passionate, I am creative, and I refuse to be stopped.

And yet... I am scared, I am alone, I am beating my head against a brick wall.

I don't want to chase the almighty dollar, but I've got to keep the children fed. I am a blogger, a saleswoman, an editor, a book cover designer, a layout editor, a copywriter, a hundred jobs, most of which don't pay the bills.

I write, I fight, I resist the urge to take flight to a world with less struggle and heartbreak.

I am a balancing act, a conundrum, and waiting to either fall or fly high.

I. Am. An. Author.

Now the key to this exercise is to ask you, the reader, what you think. Let me know in the comments below:

What do you think makes this unique?
What can I do more of?
What can I do less of?
How can I improve?

Friday, October 23, 2015

Wacky Watching Vampire Diaries Season 2

And now we are into the hot mess of brotherly love triangle... And yet, I am still watching. The werewolf element was really cool. I was intensely disappointed that we lost Mason... Now that was some delicious eye candy. Plus, anyone who knows me knows I am more of a werewolf fan.

I do find myself spending more time doing other things while it is playing in the background. So much silly nonsense. I feel compelled to keep watching, but find myself writing while it plays in the background, or playing solitaire on my phone.

I am definitely glad I am not a teenager anymore.

It has been pretty cool recognizing parts of Savannah. My sister used to live there and I would go to visit.

But I find myself wondering why I still have this playing in the background. It does have some pretty cool music...

What are your thoughts, are you a Vampire Diaries fan?

Let me know in the comments below.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Murder for Justice Blog Tour 10/20-10/30 Character Interview

Hello Lovely Readers, here is a character interview as part of Dominique Watson’s Blog tour for Murder For Justice: A Scarlett Fry Story

About the Book: Kendall Harris never thought this would be his last 4th of July he’d celebrate with his daughter.

San Diego Homicide Detective Scarlett Fry is called to a home in the middle of the night on 4th of July. What awaits her is a brutal killing that causes everyone to be a suspect, but something doesn’t seem right. With a lot of motive and little evidence, Scarlett is up against one of the most twisted killers in her career.

She and her partner, Trey Carr, spend weeks tracking down evidence to convict a killer that they are convinced is right in front of their face. Just when it seems like Scarlett has found her “man” the case takes a turn for the worst and becomes a cold case.

When her main suspect ends up dead, Scarlett and Carr are confused more than ever. They must hunt down a serial killer that’s attacking families with a motive even Scarlett can’t understand.

Murder for Justice is the first book in a page turning series that introduces readers to a fire, red head detective that will stop at nothing to protect and serve her city.

KFMB San Diego Channel 8 Interviews Detective Scarlett Fry 

KFMB: Detective Scarlett Fry, thank you for taking the time to talk with us this evening. It’s not too often that a detective speaks with the media openly.

Detective Fry: (Laughing) Well most of my work is to be kept under wraps until we’ve been able to formally work our cases.

KFMB: Understandable. But don’t you think it’s only fair that the public know about what’s going on in its city? Take your current case: Kendall Harris who was found dead in his home by his daughter. SDPD has not found or even arrested anyone for the murder yet. Don’t you think the people of San Diego deserve to know what’s going on? 

Detective Fry: You are correct. We want the public to know what’s going on but sometimes to keep them safe, it’s better the less they know. With the Kendall Harris case, I can’t say much. However, I can say that our department is doing everything we can to find out who killed him. This case is a priority to all of us.

KFMB: Good to know. Let’s talk about you. How long have you been on the force? 

Detective  Fry: Thirteen Years. Nine years in Narcotics and four years in homicide. 

KFMB: WOW! Narcotics. How was that different from homicide?

Detective Fry: Very different (Laughing) Although I have spent a lot of long nights away from my family in homicide, nothing is compared to working narcotics. I’ve done a lot of undercover work. Sometimes for weeks and months at a time, not being able to keep in touch with my family. I enjoyed it. But I won’t ever go back.

KFMB: Why’s that?

Detective Fry: It’s tough. A lot of people think it’s not built for women, but I think I mastered it. But (taking a deep breath and sighing) I lost a very close family member during my time in narcotics. It’s too much of a reminder to go back. I needed the change. 

KFMB: I’m sorry for your lose.

Detective Fry: Thank you.

KFMB: How has homicide affected your family?

Detective Fry: My husband has been supportive. He’s my rock and understands my passion. My mother is concerned, as a mother should be, but she supports me. It’s her prayers every night that keep me safe. 

KFMB: I understand your father served in the military. 

Detective Fry: Yes, he actually met my mother when he was on a tour in Spain. They married and had me and my brother. He was very proud of my success as a police officer as well. 

KFMB: A lot of people think, even in our times, that women aren’t cut out for this kind of work. How do you feel about that? What’s your perspective in protecting and serving as a woman?

Detective Fry: I don’t think there’s anything else I could be doing. I can’t see myself as a teacher or a homemaker or doing secretarial work. It’s not me. I grew up watching my father put on a uniform and go to work everyday risking his life for other people. I love what I do. I feel…naked without my badge and gun. I don’t like to get rough, but sometimes duty calls and I have no choice. If it means making sure the people of San Diego are safe, I do it. It’s who I am. I’m passionate about it. I think any woman who feels the same way, should push through in their dreams and passions as well. 

KFMB: Has there ever been a case that was too difficult?

Detective Fry: Every case is tough. What makes it tough, in homicide, is the news we have to deliver to the families. Every man or woman, mother or father, husband or wife, sister or brother reacts differently and it’s tough to deliver that kind of news each time. But what makes my job worth it is when I am helping the justice system. When I am bringing closure to families, it’s always worth it. 

KFMB: Ever think about retirement? All of this coming to an end?

Detective Fry: All the time. Not that I want it, or that I am ready for it, but I know it will have to end soon. Nothing lasts forever.

KFMB: What does Scarlett like to do for fun, outside of catching the bad guys?

Detective Fry: (Laughing) I love to swim. I like to cook, but I never have the time for that. My husband does most of the cooking. I also love dogs but I don’t have the time for one right now.

KFMB: What is your happy place?

Detective Fry: My husband. He’s my…everything. I can literally go to him and curl up under him. He takes it all away. Takes me to my calm place; his words are soothing. His understanding is comforting. 

KFMB: What do you want your city to know?

Detective Fry: I want the city of San Diego to know that I am passionate about what I do and what I bring to the city. I go to work every day, place my badge and my gun on my hip with a motivation that today will be the day I will heal a family. I will bring justice into someone’s heart and home. I am working for all of you.

KFMB: Thank you so much for talking with us. It’s been a pleasure.

Detective Fry: Thank you! I truly enjoyed it. 

Are you intrigued? Pre-order your copy today! 

Monday, October 19, 2015

Is This What a Midlife Crisis Feels Like?

I have been trying and striving, pushing and fighting. No matter what I do, I cannot seem to win. I have gotten lost.

I want to be happy. I want to write, I want to raise my family, I want to have my house, my life, the way I want. I know exactly how it looks. I know "how to get there."  I make the plans, I work the plans, I try so hard. But nothing seems to work.

My writing is going nowhere. I haven't been able to finish the latest book because I don't have time to write, market, promote, and do it all while working a full time job. Advertising was a waste of money. Another failed experiment of "how to get there."

My kids aren't happy. It is a constant tug of war. We don't ever seem to have any good times anymore... although, to be fair, I don't remember us having good times. I remember me trying to make good times, that always ended in fights, fatigue, and emptiness. I don't have the energy for that anymore.

My marriage is a farce. I have to fight for everything I want in the relationship, and have become the nagging wife I hate. But I cannot do it all. I want to be wanted, not fight for five minutes of attention. Why spend all that energy, when it isn't being returned? Most days I feel like we are just roommates who share a bed. Sometimes I feel like we are friends, but I cannot remember the last time I felt deeply and passionately loved. I now know why romance books sell like crazy.

I don't expect life to be perfect on all fronts at any time, but I never thought it would fail on all fronts at the same time either. How long can I keep failing before something has to give?

Do I have unrealistic expectations? Am I making myself unhappy with those expectations? I don't feel like I am asking too much. I don't need to be a millionaire or the next J.K. Rowling, I just want to do what I love, and be able to support my family on that. I don't need the newest anything, the nicest anything, I would be content to have the family enjoy a hike, or go swimming together and have fun. I don't need to be wined and dined, I just want to be wanted.

I don't know how to get where I need to be. I have done all the goal charts, all the planning, counselling, therapy, family bonding, everything I am "supposed to do." But I cannot keep pushing myself so hard. I keep getting sick. I keep getting slapped in the face with failure and rejection. I cannot keep keeping on. What do I do?

Is this what a midlife crisis feels like?

Friday, October 16, 2015

Wacky Watching: Vampire Diaries series Season 1

I know, I am way too old, and way too mature to get into the Vampire Diaries. I read the books back during the Twilight craze with coworkers. I liked Twilight better, and the tag line of my book The Hunters is "If you believe that vampires should be killed, not kissed, then this is the book for you." so that is saying a lot.

I am more of a Buffy fan, but she ended up kissing vampires too, so....

I have to say, I honestly don't know why I started watching Vampire Diaries. I will blame it on the delusional fever as I have been out sick all week, and I think it was recommended after I finished mainlining Walking Dead in preparation for the new season.

Whatever the cause, here I am inexplicably watching the series. Well, playing it in the background while trying to do other things. I honestly like the TV series for more than I liked the books. I couldn't stand Elaina. She came across in the books as a vapid and obnoxious creature. The TV series makes her more of an every girl, even though she is obviously a part of the popular crowd. They did a great job of playing up her new depth because of her parents' death, and they played down the bizarre and creepy threesome action between the two brothers. Love triangles are bad enough, without them being brothers.

Although it has been years since I read the books, I feel like the TV series is a very different story. For fans of the books, I am sure that is an intense disappointment. For me, it was great. But it is still an annoying kiss-the-vampires story. I am not Jonesing for the next episode like I did with Supernatural. Yet, still it is playing in the background even now. I don't know why.

Anyone else get this weird deja vu of Rob Lowe whenever we catch brooding shots of Damon?

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Book Review:The Gate: Journey to the New World by M. W. Smith

Genre: Young Adult, Urban Fantasy

Synopsis: The Gate: Journey to the New World is an exciting tale of two best friends, separated by a fated journey. As the two young girls are wrenched apart, one is thrown into another world, while the other is left alone in reality. 
Evanley tumbles through nothingness, only to be pitted against teens her age, a tyrannical leader, and a collection of monsters that will stretch your imagination. Meanwhile, in the real world, Jadelyn finds herself bewildered and alone, something she fears more than anything. She is forced to face a violent, daunting change in her heart, mind, and soul that leans toward a darkness she has never experienced before. 

My Thoughts: This is an amazing and inventive story. Evanley and Jadelyn are such complete opposites, fighting through teenage struggles and the fantasy backdrop allows the author to address troubles that are common to teenage hormones. Not the typical sappy crap that you see in books about teen girls, but the real deep struggles of coping with hormones and being awkward, and trying to find who you are through the pressures of society. The fact that the author artfully addresses these issues through a unique urban fantasy backdrop allows them to feel more real. 

There are a few plot holes, though given that the book is clearly set up for a sequel, I am not sure how many of them will be addressed in the next books. 

The only downside was the final editing. There were a lot of errors, which for this Grammar Nazi was a bit of a nightmare, but the story was so compelling and the characters so relatable, that I continued reading, despite the errors. M.W. Smith is a brilliant storyteller and I hope that he gets a great editor to clean up the final edit. I eagerly look forward to reading the next installment.