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So Long, August

september-1August was definitely a challenging month for me. I had exactly two weeks before all the chaos began to take place. And who can rest when all they hear is the constant ticking of the clock…tick, tock…tick, tock.

I had to spend the first part of the month preparing for back to school for everyone, including the preparation of sending my first born off to fend for himself in the throws of college. At a place he’s unaccustomed to, without anyone he knows. It was horrific. Perhaps more for me than him. Yes, I got upset. Who doesn’t? For eighteen years I did everything for that boy. And now I’m lucky if I get a phone call from him every couple of days. Which I’m not complaining. Okay, so I am…but I’m happy he’s not homesick and burning the wires telling me he’s got nothing to do. In fact, he’s more busy with four classes than he was with six at home. He’s become very social. And so I’m most happy for him.

Then came the new classes for everyone else in the family. And new teachers. It’s been quite a learning curve to know who will tolerate what and who won’t let you use the bathroom. Can you believe my 10 year old isn’t allowed to use the bathroom in the afternoon? Hello? By then, all the juices and water fountain trips are beginning to settle in the bladder. So I have to endure the car ride home with him doing a jig in the backseat. I simply advised him, upon being told he can’t use the bathroom, to ask if they still keep an emergency set of pants on hand…and do it in his chair. Is this obnoxious? Un-called for? Probably, but come on. Let the boy go take care of business, for goodness sakes.

So the schedules are now in place and September is upon us. I’m getting in the groove of how it’s going to be for the ending months of the year. And September is the month of the release for “Finding Amy.” I’m so excited about this! I’ve had a couple people read it and gotten really good comments. Squee!! And I’m putting it out there for free, for a limited time…just to get everyone primed for the third release. So please feel free to take advantage of this! And of course, let me know what you think. I love to read reviews. …well, some of them. 🙂

With that said, welcome, September! I’m happy to see you back around.

https://www.instafreebie.com/free/rVURO

 

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I’ve Done it Again!!!

AgnesThat’s right, I’ve done it again! I’ve released another Amy book. I just love that girl. And I love writing! And I love publishing! And I love readers! It’s a dream come true.

For those who’ve been misplaced out of my reach for the past month, this is the day that “Leaving Amy” reveals herself to the world. You remember “Waking Amy” right? The book where the girl gets left by her husband…she goes in search to find herself and finds…

Well, if you haven’t met Amy, then you won’t understand what, who, or why she’s “Leaving Amy”. So please, walk, run, click, or read over someone’s shoulder, the beginning of the whole ordeal. Then after that…walk, run, or click to find out the second half. I’m on pins and needles waiting to hear some reaction to all of it. Will they want to shake her, squeeze her, jump in the car and give her a quick talking to? I don’t know. And it’s driving me crazy!!

But most of all, I’m just so happy to be here on the other side of the computer, looking at this accomplishment. For someone who didn’t have a clue what they would be doing now, I’ve come a long  way in a short time. I’m beyond measurable thrilled. I’m over the sun, the moon, and the stars- happy. I can’t believe Amy has a second book and it’s for sale. Thank you to all the people who’ve begun her journey with me and who’s sticking around to see what happens next. And just for the record, so am I! I haven’t quite finished her story, so I’m looking for some suggestions. Got any?

Leaving Amy digital

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Pre-Release Jitters

thZ14FT9JCMy newest book releases this Sunday. After a bunch of hype about getting it out there, it’s finally here. And like my first one, I’m a bit nervous about how it will be received. Will people like it? Hate it? Roll their eyes and say, ‘whatever’?

I’ll admit, I had a few comments from my beta readers about changing two things…and I didn’t do it. Not because I thought my way was right, but because…okay, I thought my way was right. But I gave a million reasons why. And it wasn’t like it was huge things. All right, one was. I justified my side of the story first, and let it marinade on her end for a bit. I mean, who knows Amy better than me, right? My reader semi-came around to my reasoning. She just thought it would make more sense her way. Yikes, I hope I made the right decision in leaving it. *jitter-jitter*  I wish I could dish what it was about, but it’s kind of a spoiler. And because the other reader sided with me, I felt better about leaving it the way it was.

I just hope it’s well received. And no one is disappointed. Let’s face it, you put your heart, soul, and complete imagination into an 80,000 word document and roll the dice someone won’t slam it. It’s a lot of putting yourself out there for ridicule. And love. I love it when people comment nice things about my work. Who wouldn’t? Still….I’ve got the jitters. Here’s to next week, when I begin hearing the feedback. Eekk…I’m a little scared now, too. Not to mention stressed about not having my final installment of the series finished. No, no pressure here. Oh, right! It’s anxiety I’m having now. I have to get this straight. First the anxiety, then the stress, then the pressure. All in the life of a writer. 🙂

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Life Imitating Fiction

narciso_zWhen I first began writing “Waking Amy”, it was a long time ago. Things were different…life was different. More importantly, different for my best friend. She is also one of my beta readers. She tells me like it is. Tells me when to flush the manuscript, bury it out back, and when she stayed up till past 2 in the morning just to see who ended up with who.

She enjoyed Amy…she had a few bouts of “why is she so weak”, but overall, found her to be a likeable girl. Flash forward a year later…to “Leaving Amy.” My friend began reading it as usual, and then something happened. Her marriage began to take some tumbles. She stopped reading my book, saying she just couldn’t do it. It reflected her life too much. All that happened in “Waking Amy” was starting to take form in her own life. She was becoming Amy!

This past month has taken a turn for the worst. Her husband left her like Wesley left Amy…and for the same reasons. Out of left field. How does that happen? I’m not naïve to the fact that there are two sides to every situation, and there must’ve been some writing on the walls, but to leave? When there are children? And not to go back? Not to try? To just throw your arms up, say “it’s been real for the last 15 years, but I think I’m going to go and do something different now.” ?

Needless to say, it’s been extremely painful to watch her go through this. To wake up one morning and know she’s a single mom, and clueless to what the next year will bring with custody and support. I dedicated “Leaving Amy” to her. I had no idea I was writing her story in bits and pieces. On a side note, she put my book away and has yet to finish it.

My third Amy book is about resolution. Without spoiling the second book, which releases on May 1st, Amy seeks to find herself in the final edition. As I sit and watch all the struggles my friend is facing, it helps me write. I will find her voice and I will give her courage. Even if it takes until whenever that she is able to read it.

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My Birthday

video-hello-my-name-is-doris-coffee-videoSixteenByNine1050I got all my birthday wishes today! Usually when it’s time for my birthday and I have a chance to see a movie, nothing is playing that I want to see. This day was different. I got the Asian lunch, the movie, the popcorn, the dinner out with family, and my favorite shake! And knock on wood, I’m not sick from it all yet. (The kiddies even went home with Grandma for the night!)

Hello, My Name is Doris was really good. Not what I thought it would be, but I’m not sure what I expected. There were some scenes that I thought, what? But it was all good. (Doris had a very active imagination). Basically, for people who haven’t seen the trailer, it’s about Doris who is an older lady and she has a hot crush on a younger guy. It made me laugh out loud a few times. It’s so typical of what women think and do.

I enjoyed it most because it reminded me of how crucial it is to walk out of your comfort zone every now and then…experience things you’d never do before…be someone different for a change. Life can be so much more fascinating when you take chances. New worlds unfold themselves right before your eyes. Life is short…just do it!

I hate to bring this around to my books, but it really enhanced my awareness for writing the third book in the Amy series. Amy is so routine. Work, home, farmer’s market on the weekend. She rarely ever veers from her daily routine. But, you get molded into things when you stay walking in the same footsteps every day. Living is not habits…it’s trying new things on. I think I’ll keep that in mind when I’m formulating Amy’s final chapter. Wings are what lift you from walking in those same footsteps! 🙂

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Cover Reveal for “Leaving Amy”

Leaving Amy digitalI am sooo pleased to share with you, my cover for “Leaving Amy.” It is the second volume in the Amy series. I had so much fun writing this book. I was asked by a reader if I plot things out…do I know the ending before I even begin to write? I’m pretty amazed that my answer was no. That’s only because I’m a really organized person. Planning things is a small hobby of mine. I have 3 calendars dedicated to planning for things. With books, though I have only a general idea where I’m beginning, a so-so idea where it will go, but the ending is ALWAYS a surprise! The ending to this one will not disappoint. I hope.

Amy, as you know from reading the first book, is a bit naïve to the world without her husband. She’s unsure of herself living without an identity outside of marriage. And without spoiling the second book…she grows even more as the pages flip. You’re going to be proud how she handles herself. You’re also going to want to call her up and give her advice on doing some things differently in places. But, have no fear…she gets there! She really does.

I read all the reviews about what a rose-colored wearing glasses girl she is. How some would like to smack her. How others could identify with her. Trust me…Amy exists! I’ve known some Amys personally. But give her time, she unravels the cocoon that has had her trapped. She finds her legs and begins to stand on them. It takes time for people! It will take the third book for her to finally come full circle…but book 2, “Leaving Amy” will not disappoint! I hope everyone who enjoyed the first book will agree.

I left the guy off the cover intentionally. After all, it is “Leaving” Amy. But, I’ll leave this question with all who are following Amy’s journey…”Who’s leaving?”

“Leaving Amy” releases May 1 everywhere! Pre-order at Amazon today. 🙂

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Lost to a Generation

inside-blockbusterIs it just me, or did someone else out there remember doing this on the weekend? Going to the video store was as necessary as sleeping in on Saturday morning. And if you didn’t get there early enough, the selection for the new releases was picked dry. Don’t get me started on the late fee anxiety. By the time I took the thing back, the late fees could’ve bought it. But wasn’t it fun? Standing around, reading the backs of empty boxes, and picking out the popcorn in the buckets that popped up pretty in its own container. The video store is where I actually met my husband for our first real date. We were going to pick out a movie together and then take it to my house to watch. That way my mother could meet him, watch him for 2 hours, and size him up for not being a killer. He was actually 20 minutes late and I almost left.

Sadly I remember video stores when they carried VHS or Beta tapes. And if you brought it back without rewinding it, they charged an extra 25-50 cents!

More sadly is that my children will not have this ritual available to them. Instead, they watch as I get out of the car and wait to use the Red box. How impersonal. And annoying! Have you ever stood behind someone in 20 degree weather while they read the description to every movie on the screen? Yeah, okay…sometimes I’m that person. But who can help it. I need to know what they’re about. I certainly don’t make a habit of it, but how annoying the entire thing is. Someone standing behind me huffing somehow makes me rush. Not that this trick helps in all situations. Some people certainly don’t care when I huff behind them! And you’re lucky if you find a Red box. Give me a Blockbuster any day. Of course living out in the boonies, Netflix is not an option for me. If only. But still, I think if given the choice of dialing one up on my television or going to the video store, I might….take the television. But I still long for the store. Someone please tell me a Kindle will never take the bookstores away. I looove my Kindle, but I love the smell of books more. 🙂

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Walking on Sunshine

walkingReviews! I’ve gotta say, “I love to read them.” I hear about authors who don’t read them, and I have to wonder why. Sure, there is one out there right now that I scratch my head and wonder what the deal was, but all in all, I’m very happy with all the reviews. I love reading how someone feels about the characters. Their thoughts about Wesley, Mark, and Tom. It’s like eavesdropping on something you said and hearing everyone’s reactions!

I’m happy about all the people who read and liked Amy. She and I have become very close over the past year. And yes! the common characterization of her is to rip those rose-colored glasses off her face, but haven’t you known someone who never gives up? Especially if they’re insecure and all they know is what they know. And they fight tooth and nail to keep it? Sure, you have. At least I know a few Amys!

Anyway, I wanted to share a giveaway that ends very soon. I actually have a few. Goodreads has one that’s running all month, and Fresh Fiction will have another one beginning April 1. This one though is with Amazon. It’s a giveaway for a free copy of “Waking Amy.” So if you haven’t met this girl, enter the contest for a chance to. Her story will continue in two additional books to follow. Don’t miss out on the first one!

I hope you try it out!

https://giveaway.amazon.com/p/acb114c641d497ca

 

 

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In The Blink of an Eye

timeYou ever go on a job interview , and the guy or girl asked what you saw yourself doing in 5 years? When I was younger I thought, “boy, who knows…that’s a long time to think about.” Today…not so long.

I was driving to work this morning and I was letting my mind wander to five years from now. Of course anything could happen; I know this. But say I had the fortune of everything running smoothly in my life—what would I see myself doing? Hmmm…

Anyone who knows me, knows how restless I am. We don’t know the reason why, but merely accept that I don’t like the grass growing too long beneath my feet. And another five years would put me ten years total in my current house. TEN YEARS!! Okay, that scared me. Ten years? Have I stayed anywhere for longer than seven? Seven year itch, right?

Then I thought, three of my children will have graduated school—one even from college. OMG. That leaves only two. Two? That seemed like nothing. Who knows how to cook for only four? I could even trade in my glorious, rockin’ minivan for a real vehicle. I’ve already gotten rid of all the car seats. But, I digress. So there I was driving and thinking and I realized I wanted to move. Really move. Like in out of state. I’ve always wanted to. Why not? So there it is. There’s my “what will I be doing in five years?” plan. It might take six, but no more than that.

I was so excited with the thought of a change. I worked all day with a serene smile on my face, and came home tonight and announced it. I told my 9 and 7 year olds that we would indeed not be seeing them graduate from the county where we currently resided. They could’ve cared less. Whatever. I suppose they think I’m all talk, or perhaps they don’t care at the moment. After all, what does five years mean to them? Luckily, it means all the time in the world. To me—it’s a blink of the eye.

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77%

Couple_bored_2475394kI was listening to the radio the other day at work, and they were talking about a poll done on couples. They said that 77% of women think a guy knows exactly what’s wrong when they’re quiet and say that nothing’s wrong. Or something to that effect. I laughed out loud at the guy announcer. He was shocked. Really? I’m certainly one of those 77. I believe that when I’m quiet, my boyfriend knows very well what’s wrong. He’d have to. I’m not a mystery. He knows me well enough. There’s context clues out there in the big, bad world. Or, do they just want to feign like they don’t know, just to get out of talking about it? That’s fine with me; I don’t want to talk about it either…but know I’m not happy…and you know why!

Then I told this poll’s results to another guy. You know, that I know full well that my guy knows what my problem is when I’m quiet. And HE was shocked! Are you serious? Are guys really that unaware? Don’t you think that after you say you’re going out on Saturday with the guys and I get quiet, there’s a correlation? Seriously?

On a separate, but related subject…

I thought it was funny… my daughter got into the car today after school and said two of her friends returned from being suspended. Oh my gosh! “What were they suspended for?” I asked. She said one choked a guy and the other unrelated event, was another girl hitting a guy for saying something about her friend (his ex-girlfriend). I know, I know. I have 4 boys; I’d be pretty ticked if a girl choked or hit my son, but being a girl made me chuckle. Those girls were trying to get through to those guys. Wrong way to do it, of course. But, I don’t think that generation sounds too much like the quiet type. Those guys should have no problem with percentages of trying to figure out a girl. I don’t think they’ll give them the chance!