Wednesday, June 29, 2016

The 4 Commandments of Celebrating

What are you celebrating this week? 


Come swim along for the Four Commandments of Celebrating, but first, I've got two celebrations.

First, Beverly Stowe McClure totally made my day. That's right, she reviewed MOONLESS. Want to make an author's day? It's just that simple. SEE WHAT SHE HAD TO SAY. 

Second, Monday is the 4th of July! (Independence Day) So if you're outside of America, that holds less meaning, but think of it this way: The nation that is a world super power and supports the majority of the world's economy came into existence the day it declared independence. Now that's pretty monumental in my book. And although my country has had its ups and downs, I still love it--land of the free (ish) and home of the brave. So I'll be out celebrating on Monday.


BUT how to do it right?

I give you, THE FOUR COMMANDMENTS OF CELEBRATING:
  1. Reflect: What is it about any event, day, or circumstance that makes it worth celebrating? Looking back on life and reviewing the reasons helps us identify their meaning and evaluate their weight.
  2. Let Go: Sometimes we just need to let go of the restrains on normal life--and no, I don't mean do anything illegal. I mean, forget the day job, financial stresses, school & home work, etc. Free your mind to enjoy the moment.
  3. Make noise! I'm not kidding. Yelling and screaming releases pent up energy and emotions. Singing, likewise. Laughing has all kinds of benefits. Freeing the mind enough to let loose a "whoop" of joy can be difficult sometimes, but it's healthy and NECESSARY.
  4. EAT CHEESE: You knew that was coming. But seriously, no celebration is complete without a little splurging--be it food, money, or time.
So what are you going to celebrate this week?



And speaking of celebrating, time for some giveaway love, eh?

This month I'm highlighting fellow authors from:

(And if you already have, go buy another and gift it to someone!)

Last week Yolanda Renee ( author of EVER-TON) shared MURDER & OBSESSION, along with two truths and one lie. Anyone who guessed the lie was entered to win a SIGNED copy of either MURDER & OBSESSION or the PARALLELS anthology.

The game:

1. My Sunday school teacher was dismissed for taking our class to see the movie the Bible.

2. One of my favorite past times was drag racing. On the way to work one morning I raced a fellow driver on the highway. He asked me out and we are now married.

3. I've been married three times.

The lie: #2. While Yolanda didn't marry the man she was drag racing, but he did ask her out.

Way to guess everyone! And the winner is:

...DRUM ROLL...


Congrats, Diane!

And now meet a story from the author of HAUNTED in the Parallels anthology: 

Alphabet Soup is a collection of flash fiction from the darker side—all done Ubook style. What’s a Ubook, you might ask? It’s a brand-new, patent-pending book format that combines the story with music. And the best thing? It’s completely free.

Experience it HERE.

Ready to meet the author?

Melanie Schulz is planted in upstate New York with her husband and three kids on a smallish plot of land she likes to believe is a farm. She plays at being a writer, same as she plays at being a farmer, and nurse, and overall enjoyer of this thing called life. One of the things she enjoys most are people who delight in discussing all things listed above.

Join in the conversation at:



You might run across Melanie at her computer with a glass of wine munching on room-temperature camambert topped with an ooey,  gooey carmel/dried apple/peacan mixture.

Melanie gave me two truths and one lie to test your "lie detector" skills. Those who figure out the lie will go into my magic hat for the chance to win their choice of eBook THE NEWSTEAD PROJECT, ERRON, 2084, or BLACKBIRD. (Open internationally.)

You have until Tuesday, July 5 at 2 p.m. EDT to guess. Be sure to come back for the answers on July 6, 8 a.m. EDT.
TRUTH OR LIE

1. I am a concert pianist.

2. My husband used to drive a race car.

3. I have three dairy sheep: Daisy-May, Lucy-Lu, and Sunshine that I plan to milk and make homemade cheese with.
So sleuths, which is the lie? Have you met Melanie? What are you celebrating now/shortly?

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

7 Amazing Reasons to Celebrate Dads (Late)

Father's Day just happened in the USA. Did you miss it? I happen to love this holiday. It gives me an opportunity to recall all the amazing things my father has done for me:

Dads (or dad figures) will do anything to teach you how to live right:


They protect you:

Source
They make sure you don't starve:

Source
They show you how to live by example:


They teach you what to fear:


And how to use your imagination:


And they're eager to play with you:


So I hope you honored your father (figure) this last Sunday, and if you didn't, it's never too late.




Time for some giveaway love, eh?

This month I'm highlighting fellow authors from:

(Unless you already have, in which case, you rock!)

Last week Tamara Narayan ( author of SCRYING THE PLANE) shared HEART STOPPER, along with two truths and one lie. Anyone who guessed the lie was entered to win an eBook of Tamara's latest release, HEART STOPPER.

The game:
1. When I was a penguin keeper at the Riverbanks Zoo in SC, a local news crew came by to shoot a few clips of our Black-foot penguins. This was in 1992 and Batman Returns was big at the box office. This sequel featured Danny Devito as the villain The Penguin along with several real Black-foot penguins as his minions. I wasn’t in any of the shots, but one penguin did poop on the reporter’s foot. I don’t think that made the cut either.

2. On July 1, 2000 I walked in a protest march in Columbia, SC against putting the Confederate Flag on the SC State House grounds next to the Confederate Monument. The flag was being moved there from the dome of the Statehouse where it had flown since 1962 as a protest against desegregation. (The Confederate Flag was finally removed from the State House grounds on July 10, 2015, less than a month after the murder of nine people in a Charleston, SC church, including state senator Clementa C. Pinckney.)

3. I was in my garden weeding the other day. My cat, Mr. Mistoffelees, came by for snuggles and ended up sitting in my lap. Then two fellows came jogging by, one of which I recognized as Jason McElwain, better known as J-Mac, winner of the 2006 ESPY Award for Best Moment in Sports. J-Mac, a high-functioning autistic, scored 20 points in a high school basketball game in four minutes, nineteen seconds.

The lie: #1. Tamara said: I was a penguin keeper at the Riverbanks Zoo and Botanical Gardens in 1992, but no reporters ever came around to feature the birds in relation to Batman Returns or anything else. One of the penguins, named Chewy as a nod to Star War’s Chewbacca, had a crush on me. He’d wait by the door for me every morning and bring me sticks (the penguin version of roses). And yes, I was pooped on several times, but luckily I was wearing big rubber boots and a Dickie jumpsuit. Sounds stylish, doesn’t it?

Way to guess everyone! And the winner is:

...DRUM ROLL...


Congrats, Krystal!

And now meet a story from the author of EVER-TON in the Parallels anthology: 

Love is never easy, but for Detective Steve Quaid and his fiancée, Sarah, their road to happiness is laden with minefields.

After spending countless hours reconverting his grandfather’s cabin into the perfect honeymoon retreat for Sarah, the cabin becomes a bloody crime scene detailing her death. Accused, Steven escapes into the Alaskan mountains, biding his time to find the truth.

Who killed his beloved?

A seasoned woodsman, he outsmarts even the cleverest of trackers. All but one.

Mauled by a grizzly, a half-dead Steven barely escapes.

But will he live to bring the rightful murderer to Justice?

Get your copy HERE.

Ready to meet the author?

At one time adventure called to me and I answered. I learned to sleep under the midnight sun of Alaska, survive in below zero temperatures, and I was privileged to hike both the Brooks and Alaska Mountain Ranges. I've traveled from Prudhoe Bay to Valdez, and the memories are some of my most valued. The wonders, mysteries, and incredible beauty that is Alaska has never left me and thus now influence my writing.

Despite my adventurous spirit, I achieved my educational goals, married, and we have two wonderful sons. Writing is now my focus, my newest adventure!

Yolanda loves Swiss cheese, but due to changes in diet, she has had to eliminate it. She says she misses it more than ice cream.

Find Yolanda at:

Yolanda gave me two truths and one lie to test your "lie detector" skills. Those who figure out the lie will go into my magic hat for the chance to win either a SIGNED PRINT COPY of MURDER AND OBSESSION or PARALLELS. (Winner's choice: US and Canada only for print books. Open to international winners for an eBook prize.)

You have until Tuesday, June 28 at 2 p.m. EDT to guess. Be sure to come back for the answers on June 29, 8 a.m. EDT.
TRUTH OR LIE

1. My Sunday school teacher was dismissed for taking our class to see the movie the Bible.

2. One of my favorite past times was drag racing. On the way to work one morning I raced a fellow driver on the highway. He asked me out and we are now married.

3. I've been married three times.

OH! And stop by Yolanda's place today where 
I'm chatting about cookies, research, and time. (Ooh!)
So sleuths, which is the lie? Have you met Yolanda? What's the biggest thing you learned from your father (figure)? Which is your favorite funny? Do you have a funny "Dad moment" you'd like to share?