The shoes didn't fit. It was an omen.

Monday, January 27, 2014

What Happened this Past Week

I'm still tweaking Killer Stilettos. A lot of chapters have been murdered and chucked. A lot have been re-done with a small hint of what they were before I began changes. Friday, I left off at Chapter 19.

Also, I've been working on expanding Time on Her Side, a sci-fi, about a middle-aged woman who is visited by her older self and is given a second chance to do her life over, in order to save the world. But things don't always go right.

Sunday, I spent a big part of my day with my 93 and 94 year old grandparents. After, I had dinner with two of my daughters and the Glowstick.

And when I've been able to, I've been making random bookcovers with Power Point and Paint.

Next week, I plan on writing several posts about my childhood sweeties, my first kiss, and a wild first date on Valentine's Day. Oh and something about my grandparents. Their love is still cooking. Anyway, I have  several stories to tell in honor of Valentine's Day.

So to jump start this, I thought I'd give you a kissing scene today:

“Lila,” Julio said, suddenly floating beside me. The last time I had seen him was in the otherworld after I had momentarily died. “I’ve been waiting all day to see you.” He pulled me into him. We really shouldn’t have been doing this. Gram had told me astral projection could be dangerous.
My body melted against his firm one, but guilt ate at me. “We really shouldn’t be doing this. Gram would be upset,” I said chewing on my lower lip.
Julio ignored my comment and maneuvered me underneath his floating body, wrapping his arms around my waist.
Butterflies exploded into the pit of my stomach sending shivers all through me. “Besides, you’ve already picked up a hitch—”
His mouth washed over mine.
Instinctively, I closed my eyes. “Hiker,” I said into his mouth before his tongue probed mine. My hands had a mind of their own and they roamed the muscles on his back. The air grew hot in the little space between us.
His arms moved like vines up and down my back to the sides of my waist, and then to the top of my bottom. His fingers drummed against it as if thinking to go further. Like a suction cup, his lips held onto mine and his tongue squirmed around mine. One hand slid down to my right butt cheek. Oh my. Electricity shot through me waking up desires I had forgotten about.

Gram appeared in my mind. Her finger wagged at me. Oh dear. I grabbed both of Julio’s hands and moved them to my waist. After, I pulled my head back just enough to loosen my lips from his.
I hope everyone has a great Monday and a great week. I'll be reading other blogs off and on all day and throughout the week.
What is everyone else up to?
Hugs and chocolate,

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Lookie, Lookie! My First Practice Bookcover

Hey, everyone!

I've been working on a practice cover for the last two hours. I took a picture of a birdhouse with my iPhone (my friend Norma gave me that suggestion). Anyway, that was the easy part. The rest of my creation was blood, sweat, a few swear words, and tears using Power Point and Paint.

When I can do this in my sleep, I'll be glad to instruct everyone here on my blog.

Hugs and chocolate, all!

PS More than likely, I'll post another practice one again.

DISCLAIMER: This picture belongs to Shelly Arkon. PLEASE DO NOT COPY! Unless you ask my permission.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Book Cover Dilema

"There is no way you're paying over a 100 dollars for another book cover. You haven't grossed enough to pay an editor, buy your copyrights, and so on." Sweetman is the business person in the house.

"But I'm a writer. Not a cover artist." I can't even draw stick people.

"Nor are you a good  business woman. You haven't even made back all your money on what you've spent to promote your books."

So I hang my head in the hall of shame. He's right, you know. But I'm always hopeful.

Soon I'll be releasing Killer Stilettos, and I haven't got a cover yet. I'd like Collin Beishir to do it.  He did the initial cover to my debut novel below.

And the cover to my short story, The Partners' Progeny.

But he would have to re-do the cover to Secondhand Shoes since I'm going with a shoe theme. Money is an issue right now. Things have been changing in my day to day life at The Salon. The corporate hounds have figured out how to take money out of mine and fellow hairdressers' pockets and put it into theirs. Its really cramping my style...if you know what I mean. Not to mention, I do what I can to help the grandbaby.

So the Sweetman says, "You willhave to learn how to make the covers yourself along with the formatting. Save your pennies for the editor." Talk about being scared to death. Clearly, I have no idea about bookcovers. I directed Collin the wrong way with my debut novel. I can't tell you how many emails I've gotten from peeps wanting to know what is wrong with my cover. So I hang my head in shame feeling I didn't do Collin justice in his talents. 

Live, make your mistakes, and hope to God you learn. 

Anyway, I've heard you can make bookcovers via Power Point. In fact, I found some instructions and will be practicing. Don't be surprised if I begin posting off the wall covers just because.

Anyone use Power Point to make their own covers? Anybody struggling money wise? 

The economy does seem to be changing. And it's at the corporate level, wanting more from you while they take more out of our pockets. I'll stop here because I could go on forever about this.

Hope everyone is having a great Monday. This morning I'm working on my rewrites to Killer Stilettos. Later, I'll be heading off to work.

Before I go, here's a few lines from Killer Stilettos:

The night air felt muggy and hot. Low rumbles of thunder sounded around us, and lightening zig-zagged through the dark sky. Big puffy clusters of clouds hovered over us.
“I don’t see any stars. Can we go back to my room now?” The words filtered through a hiccup.
“Ah, mi amor. But this is beautiful.”Julio lifted his eyes to the sky. Thunder boomed again and what looked liked a million lighted crackles filled the sky for a split second.
“You brought me to watch lightening?” It gave me a fright. I hated lightening.
“Pretty cool. Huh?” Julio moved behind me, wrapping his arms around my waist, resting his chin on my right shoulder.

Out of my right peripheral, something dark but transparent moved.

Hope you enjoyed the diddy.

Hugs and chocolate!

My Review on Three Hoodies Save the World

You can find my review on Three Hoodies Save the World on Goodreads.

                                                                My review here
Hugs and chocolate!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Slow Going

I was hoping to have Killer Stilettos perfected and published by December 2013. But last year as a lot of you know, I had my challenges. 
January 2013 began with the knowledge that my husband needed surgery. And by February we learned he had cancer and had to go through chemo which lasted until around June. 
Two weeks hadn't gone by and daughter number 4's drug problem had resurfaced. By August, DCF got involved, and my grand-baby was living with us again, and I filed for custody. It all got messy. Two separate divisions of DCF didn't agree on the outcome of my grand-baby, and before I could even get a court date, the grand-baby went back. Funny, I finally got a court date around December 17th.
But to date, baby is good. The daughter is following through with her outpatient rehab.
But then 2 weeks before Christmas, hubby's doctor found polyps in his voice box and mine found a lump in my neck. Hubby had surgery and a shot of chemo in his larynx a week before Christmas. I had an ultrasound of the thyroid.
Come to find out, my lump was neither a node, a goiter, or cancer. Thank God! The exam found a very swollen lymph node. So the  doctor concluded a flare up of my chronic Epstein Barr. She even found more swollen lymph nodes throughout my body to conclude what she thought. So now I battle the fatigue that comes with that.
Not to mention, my poor 93 year old grandmother has had a bad fall, a bleeding ulcer, her MerSa came back, went through seven blood transfusions, and survived 2 heart attacks before Christmas.
And through all of these life events, I've managed to keep my Salon job, publish 2 short stories, draft  3 other novels, and rewrite Killer Stilettos 32 times--this is the next book in the Lila's Journey Series.
Yup. You did in fact read 32 times. But I also loose my focus when life throws constant curve balls at me. Because sometimes one has to stop what they're doing to deal with stuff.
But soon and very soon, I shall have it perfected.
So before I go, I'm sharing a favorite line from Killer Stilettos. It's a Gram line. When I was reading through it last night, it made me chuckle. It's so her to say:
“I’m not God. I’m just a ghost trying to help her granddaughter.” She spread her arms out wide, palms up.
Do you have to stop writing for weeks sometimes when life throws a doozy at you?
Hope your Monday is a great one. I'm a The Salon on my iPhone. It's quiet for now.
Hugs and chocolate, 

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Will the Real Social Network Friends Please Stand UP

Yesterday, I posted this on my Facebook Fan Page: If there is one thing I never want to do, is to bug peeps to buy my books and stories. Especially other authors. YIKES!

And I mean it. It's annoying to me as a struggling author to have my message box at Twitter, Facebook, and Linkedin ... or even my email bombarded with desperate pleas to buy someone's book. And I'm not talking about planned books tours, cover reveals, and invites from Goodreads. What I am talking about are the peeps who never say 'hi, how are you doing', because they really want to know that. But instead, they say, 'hi, please buy my book'. As authors we already have plenty of stuff to weed through daily and probably feel guilty about. Mine is I just can't read as fast as I'd like, write a review quick enough, and comment on everyone's blog that I follow.

A lot of us...maybe all who write are grabbing at straws trying to make a sale. I know I can't always sell something at The Salon until I've sold myself. And that might be a whole year.

As a hairdresser, a relationship and a good reputation with our own kind have to happen before we can have the same with the public. I believe the same goes for us writers. Of course, this  is my opinion. 

Relationship is highly important for any kind of cooperation and cohesiveness. 

Anybody else feel the same?

Hugs and chocolate,

Monday, January 6, 2014