Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

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I hope you’re having fun with friends and family. Stay safe. See  you in 2015!

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Happy Thanksgiving!

Pumpkin Pie

I hope everyone is having a wonderful day with family and friends. Stay safe!

 

Pumpkin Pie
Mmmm. Pumpkin Pie.

Happy Valentines Day!

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What’s not to love? A day about romance and chocolate. Bring it on.

Happy love and chocolate day!

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Going Giftless – Year 2

Find out about my family’s new holiday tradition – Going Giftless. Stop by the 7 Scribes and share your views.

On the Mystic Storm front – I’m slowly revising my way through the first draft. It may seem hard to believe, especially after I’ve written the entire book, but it’s taken me a while to find Zephyr and Kalli’s voices. Now that I have them, I just need those long stretches of time locked in a room with nothing but voices in my head (I know that sounds a little loony).

The True Meaning of Sacrifice

Happy Friday everyone!

Don’t forget to visit me at the Scribes. We have a guest today – RC Bonitz – A Blanket for Her Heart.

Since Memorial Day is around the corner, I’d like to share some facts about the holiday, a poem by Longfellow, and my thoughts on sacrifice.

  • Originally, the holiday was known as Decoration Day – a day to remember Civil War dead and decorate their graves with flowers. It was celebrated on different dates depending on the region of the country.
  • The first Decoration Day was held on May 30, 1868. An official ceremony was held at Arlington National Cemetery. Five thousand participants helped decorate the 20,000 graves of both Union and Confederate Army dead. The date was chosen because it was not a battle anniversary day.
  • After World War I, Memorial Day ceremonies were held to remember the dead from all wars. Although, the term Memorial Day was first used in 1882, it did not become the holiday’s common name until after World War II.
  • Memorial Day didn’t become an official Federal holiday until 1971. At the same time, the Uniform Holidays Bill went into effect moving several holidays, including Memorial day to specific Mondays.
  • Since Memorial Day was moved from May 30, there have been several bills introduced in Congress to return Memorial Day to it’s original date to restore significance back to the day.
As promised, a snippet of a poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow – The Arsenal at Springfield

This is the Arsenal. From floor to ceiling,
Like a huge organ, rise the burnished arms;
But front their silent pipes no anthem pealing
Startles the villages with strange alarms.

Ah! what a sound will rise, how wild and dreary,
When the death-angel touches those swift keys
What loud lament and dismal Miserere
Will mingle with their awful symphonies

I hear even now the infinite fierce chorus,
The cries of agony, the endless groan,
Which, through the ages that have gone before us,
In long reverberations reach our own.

To read the rest – click here

Published in 1845, after Longfellow visited the armory in Springfield, MA, many scholars consider this to be an effective example of an anti-war poem. Longfellow likened the guns to a pipe organ of death, destruction and misery.

And yet, as abhorrent as war is, sometimes, it’s necessary to stop evil.

Freedom is not free.

Historian Stephen Ambrose once said of his fallen brothers in arms- “they gave up all of their tomorrows, so we could have our today.”

I have never forgotten that quote. A stark and vivid reminder that all the freedoms that we take for granted come at a great cost.

So ask yourself – how can I honor their sacrifice?

  • Be informed citizens (yes, that means watching political debates, reading the newspaper, paying attention to the issues that matter to you).
  • Run for office or serve on local town committees, support military families, thank a solder next time you see one, and teach your children to respect democracy, and don’t try to get out of jury duty.
  • Learn and appreciate the history of the United States of America. Forget history class. There are hundreds of well-written interesting books out there! You’d be surprised to learn how many of the problems we face today have their roots in events from the past.
  • Vote in every election no matter how big or small.

From the bottom of my heart, I say – thank you – to all the fallen soldiers and veterans- knowing that no amount of gratitude can make up for the ultimate sacrifice made by the men and women in the Armed Forces. Past. Present. Future.

Have a safe and meaning filled holiday everyone!

Romancing the Valentine Giveaway Hop

Hi everyone! This week I’m participating in Valentine’s Blog hop so I will be skipping my Friday post. But don’t forget to visit me on Friday, 2/10/12 at the 7 Scribes. I’m giving away a crocheted candy dot scarf!

For one week only – 2/6/12 – 2/13/13,  leave me a comment and you will be entered in a random drawing to win an e-book of my new release Mystic Ink.

The winner will be announced on Valentine’s Day – 2/14!

Don’t forget to click the link below and visit all the wonderful sites on the Hop!



Good Luck! And happy hopping!

The blurb:

The last thing Nix, a Sea Nymph, wants to see behind the dumpster near her tattoo shop is another dead mortal. She also doesn’t want to hear Hades piss and moan about how the souls of the dead aren’t making it to the Underworld. And Nix certainly doesn’t want to be attracted to supernatural police agent, Calder Quinne when he comes to investigate. All Nix really wants is to run her tattoo shop in peace and quiet. Hey, we don’t always get what we want, now do we?

Here’s a sneak peek at Mystic Ink:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Nix, thoughts still swirling in her mind, headed toward the side door. After she unlocked the deadbolt, her eyes automatically went to the dumpster. Nothing. Thank the Gods. Her sigh of relief was quickly sucked back in. A dark shape further down the alley caught her eye. Maybe it was a heap of clothes or a bag of garbage. Whatever it was, it was lying near the entrance of the Underworld Gate. The Gate was invisible to all eyes, except Guardians—like her, Hades, and Charon. Whoever or whatever was back there couldn’t have known how close they were to the Underworld.

“Hell. Now what?” Please, be trash that some rude asshole left in my alley.

Rather than kick it with her foot, she decided to be more prudent and find something long to use as a poker. While grabbing a shop broom inside, she registered how quiet the place was. Of course, Basil wasn’t there. He was still with Jason.

Back in the alley, Nix slowly approached, straining for a better look. The pile was inside the building’s shadow. The closer she got, the more the lump resembled a body. She cursed. “Oh, come on! Why does this keep happening?”

Broom at the ready, she gave it jab. The mass was solid and there was no crinkle of plastic. So much for the garbage bag theory. Man, she did not want to have to call the police. At the rate she was going, they would probably arrest her just on principle.

Stupid mound.

She lifted the broom, ready to strike. An arm sprouted from the pile and shot up, stopping the handle from falling.

Nix barked, “What the hell?”

The broom clattered to the ground.

A dark figure rose up. The set of the shoulders, the short black hair . . . it was awfully familiar. “Cal?”

“Nix,” he said, his voice strained and tired. His arm extended, propping his body against the brick wall.

“If this is your idea of a joke, it’s not funny.” When he didn’t respond, Nix came up behind him and placed her hand on his back. “Are you—”

The words choked off. There was something wrong. Really wrong. His energy, the essence of his life, was out of whack. Like he was missing . . .

She put her hand up to her mouth, swallowing dread as he turned to face her. “Cal, where’s your soul?”

Don’t want to wait to read more? Get your copy right now from these sellers:

Amazon:

B&N:

The Daily Grind

Happy Friday everyone. Don’t forget to visit me at the Scribes today for – Whip it Good!  

Now that the holiday season is in the rear view mirror, I’m mostly back on schedule. Taking the week off after Christmas is a double-edged sword. I always think I’ll be so productive, but in the end all I do is shop and have fun with my sons.

Not that I’m complaining. We had a great time last week doing fun things like seeing a movie (the new Sherlock Holmes – much better than the last go around). I cherish every moment, since they’re teenagers and I’m lucky they still speak to me. My oldest is eighteen now, so I realize that one of these days, he won’t have as much time for old Mom.

Needless to say, I didn’t make much progress with my writing goals. But, I did purchase a single serve coffee maker. See the lovely photo – that’s my new favorite appliance.

I’m a relative late-comer to coffee. For years and years, I drank tea, eschewing all coffee. I didn’t try my first real cup until I was in my thirties.

Yes, I survived college and young motherhood with no coffee. I’ve always loved the smell of coffee. Growing up, my Mom’s Mr.Coffee machine would dutifully gurgle every morning in our house. But, I never drank it. I didn’t want to become a coffee junkie, always needing caffeine to function – like my mother.

I’m naturally caffeinated and a morning person – who needs it, right?

Before you think I’m a complete freak, I do love tea. And for many years I drank it black, no milk or sugar. Until I discovered flavored tea and Splenda. Suddenly french vanilla tea tasted a whole lot better with sweetness. Around the same time, I tried flavored coffee.

Hated it! I always drank it with milk and Splenda (or sugar).

One day, I realized that the coffee wasn’t the problem at all. It was the milk. I didn’t add it to tea, so why was I adding it to my coffee. Because everyone else did. DUH!

As soon as I eliminated the milk, I liked coffee much better. And, as an added bonus, when I joined Weight Watchers a few years back, black tea and coffee are zero points!

Yahoo!

Which brings me to the lovely Keurig  machine. I’m the only tea and coffee drinker in my house, so it made sense to purchase it (nice rationalization, I know, I know).  I don’t need a big coffee maker for one person. It never ends well when I drink an entire pot of coffee. And hot water from the microwave and instant coffee isn’t as much fun.

Besides, I love to relax with a nice mug of tea or coffee while I brainstorm. Yes, I realize that caffeine is not ideal when in the creative mind – but it doesn’t seem to hamper me one bit.

I can’t think of a better way to enjoy a hot drink and have an endless variety of flavor choices.

I love my nifty machine.  It makes hot water too. Is there nothing the Keurig can’t do?

Ahh technology. . .

Sadly, the Keurig can’t write my next book. Only I can do that. Back to the grind!

What is your favorite guilty pleasure beverage? And what specialty gizmo has caught your fancy?

Something Old and Something New

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! Don’t forget to visit me at the Scribes – I Heart Ebenezer Scrooge!

Since the holiday is fast approaching, I don’t have much to report this week. I’m excited to be on vacation all next week and I hope to make progress on Devil’s Advocate. I had worked on it way back in May and June, then stopped to write The Undead Space Initiative.

Now, I’m in the process of getting back into the groove and submerging myself in the story. I’m excited about this one because it’s based on the very first novel I ever attempted to write. The book was never fully completed and it’s bugged me that I never finished it.

Let’s face it. I had no idea what I was doing back then! It’s better if that story never sees the light of day. Yet, I couldn’t forget my heroine. Devil’s Advocate is my attempt to breathe new life into her.

I still have some decisions to make – first person POV or third? Urban fantasy or romance?

(Who am I kidding? Romance always sneaks into my books.)

Whatever I decide, I’m hopeful to add another manuscript to my completed pile!

Have a safe and wonderful holiday season! Leave me a note and let me know how you plan to spend the holidays!

Extra! Extra!

Happy Friday! Please be sure to remember to visit me at the Scribes today  for my blog – One Month from Now.

Today, I have some newsworthy items to share with everyone.

  • Sunday, December 4, I will be blogging at Mare’s Place. Be sure to leave a comment to enter for a chance to win some Mystic Ink/Casey Wyatt stuff.
Great Prizes!
  • Writers – it’s not too late to enter CTRWA’s The Write Stuff Contest. The deadline is December 5th. In addition to receiving feedback from experienced contest judges, this contest awards cash prizes to the winners!
  • Speaking of excellent prizes – stop by and leave a comment at the Soul Mate Author’s Blog for a chance to win the December contest prize – a Kindle.
  • And fans of the Scribes – we need your help. If you enjoy our blog, please nominate us for The 6th Annual Top 10 Blogs for Writers Contest here. Please leave a comment and our link (otherwise your vote doesn’t count!). Thank you for your support.

Anyone have news to share?