Monday, April 30, 2012

#MemoryLane Mondays- #Poetry & #Mother #Daughter Time

 My copy of The Best Loved Poems of the American People-
Yes, after the dust cover wore out, I created my own with plastic canvas crafts.
Some of my favorite memories are the times spent with my mom and sister, laying on my parents' bed on rainy spring or summer afternoons. It was quality time that, though it has altered, is not something we get to share very often nowadays. When I do go up to visit, sometimes when we have down time and are just lazing around the house, my mom and I or sometimes my sister and I can sit and chat.

The last time I was up my mom and I had a morning like that. After my darling daughter had shoved me against the wall as much as my poor old back could handle all night long, I retreated the the living room sofa around 6 or 7 am. My mom, who usually sleeps in later than that, got up and lay on the futon and we just talked. Those moments are never enough for me because I know someday I won't have them anymore and that's one of those mid-life scary thoughts that makes you yearn for just a few more of those "mother/daughter" moments- the kind you'll be able to look back on as you get older and life moves onward.

I have a book of poetry called "The Best Loved Poems of the American People" which we used to lay on the bed and read from. Every Christmas, my mom would read us A Visit from St. Nicholas, but there were other times this thick tome was hauled from the shelf and it was on those rainy afternoons that my mom would read us poetry that was not exactly politically correct and oftentimes very gruesome and violent portrayals of life, love and death.
A few examples that sticks with me are- Love's Philosophy, Loyalty, Outwitted, Annie and Willie's Prayer, The Owl and the Fox, Judged by the Company One Keeps, The Walrus and the Carpenter, A Scandal Among The Flowers. Those are just the few that really stuck with me, along with this one, which never fails to bring me to tears-

The Little Cat Angel

by Leontine Stanfield in
"The Best Loved Poems of the American People"

The ghost of a little white kitten
Crying mournfully, early and late,
Distracted Saint Peter, the watchman,
As he guarded the heavenly gate.
"Say, what do you mean," said his Saintship,
"Coming here and behaving like that?"
"I want to see Nellie, my missus,"
Sobbed the wee little ghost of a cat.
"I know she's not happy without me,
Won't you open and let me go in?"
"Begone," gasped the horrified watchman,
"Why the very idea is a sin;
I open the gate to good angels,
Not to stray little beggars like you."
"All right," mewed the little white kitten,
"Though a cat, I'm a good angel, too."
Amazed at so bold an assertion,
But aware that he made no mistake,
In silence, Saint Peter long pondered,
For his name and repute were at stake.
Then placing the cat in his bosom
With a "Whist now, and say all your prayers,"
He opened the heavenly portals
And ascended the bright golden stairs.
A little girl angel came flying,
"That's my kitty, Saint Peter," she cried.
And, seeing the joy of their meeting,
Peter let the cat angel abide.

This tale is the tale of a kitten
Dwelling now with the blessed above,
It vanquished grim Death and High Heaven
For the name of the kitten was Love.
 Whatever you do on this 1st day of the week...don't forget those you love dearly and let them know.
Don't wait to tell them you love them until all you have left are the memories.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

#SCENTsational Saturdays- #Fave 4- #DreamAngels #Heavenly

There is irony in the fact that this SCENTsational Saturday's favorite is

 Capture the radiance. Live the dream. Love the romance of Dream Angels® fragrance. Luminous and sensual, Dream Angels Heavenly® glows in luxurious warmth. White musk, sandalwood, vanilla and white peony.

Several years ago, when my marriage was much younger, I'd told my husband I'd like a bottle of Frederick's of Hollywood perfume for Christmas. It was pricy, but I loved the fragrance on the little sampler sheet that was in my catalogs. I knew there wasn't a store anywhere close to where we lived, so I kept dropping hints for him to order online or from the catalog. We didn't really know each other all that well at the time, had only been married maybe a year, together two, so he didn't know how to take the hint, at all.

Imagine my surprise when he made a trip to the mall without me and came home with "a little something you asked for." He was so proud that he "found the perfume I asked for," and it even came with a small clutch (that's a purse) but I was beyond crushed. He actually thought he'd went to the right store and got me the right perfume. I thought the smell was just too loud and it gave me a headache and I burst into tears.

Now, I can't remember exactly what was said, but at the time, I was still coming down from the hormones of having a baby and I was so completely taken aback by the fact that he'd gotten the wrong thing, I took the immature route and fussed at him about it. How could he have gotten it wrong? I'd hinted and blatantly told him which one I wanted, had in fact told him he'd have to order it, but instead, he did things his own way.

It turned into a fight, and not a pretty one- if a fight can ever be pretty, because at the time, our marriage was so new and we were learning about each other all the time, finding out things we hadn't been aware of when we first got was like balancing on shifting plates, similar to the tectonic plates that shift and cause earthquakes. It was shaky and scary and uncertain what might set us off.

Of course, he felt awful that it wasn't, in fact, what I'd asked for and after I had my big baby cry, I tried to accept the gift anyway as something unique that he picked out just for me. His intentions were in the right place, but I was left feeling that he didn't know me at all.

The irony in that, is that after nearly 9 years or so, I actually LOVE this perfume because I think of him when I wear it- not the messy argument about it, but the sensual aroma of it and the fact that it was a signature fragrance that I've only ever worn since he and I have been together. It's a scent that I associate with my husband, so I guess that good intentions gone awry do sometimes have a lasting effect- in a good way!

Has a significant other ever given you a fragrance or cologne you just could not stand? Or perhaps, given you a new scent that now, years later, inspires lovely memories and happy thoughts?
 Share with me...

Have a SCENTsational Saturday!

Friday, April 27, 2012

#Romance #Readers, Castaway Hearts is #RomancingtheWorld ♥♥♥ #historical- #Links on #Blog

Amazon UK Kindle
Amazon Spain Kindle
Amazon Italy Kindle

#FFF #Touch by @JulieDestry @FictionWitches #TMPress

Warning: Graphic language and adult situations; intended for age 18 and over.

Click image above to purchase for Kindle

Sometimes, the dark exposes more than it hides...

As a news anchor, Kass needs to show the world her conservative side, but underneath her public persona is a woman who longs for physical connection. When an invitation to visit a sex club arrives in her inbox, she jumps at the chance to indulge herself in an evening of hot, sweaty sex with a stranger—no strings attached. What she finds instead is a man who shows her that secret fantasies can become reality, but only if she’s willing to take a chance.

Finn's a man whose mojo has hit rock bottom. After the crash and burn of his last relationship, an anonymous sexual encounter is just what he needs. Although the goal for the night is simply to give them both pleasure, he discovers that he may be willing to give something more…

Kass is scared to risk revealing her identity to the man who just took her beyond her wildest expectations, no matter how much he tempts her.  But Finn’s determined that their scorching passion has a chance to see the light of day.

Author Bio:  With most of my childhood lost in story-land, it’s a wonder that it took me until I was almost 30 years old to finally start writing my own stories. I’m in love with the idea of love, and my writing and reading habits reflect that. It’s all about the romance! Nothing’s as satisfying as a Happily Ever After, in my opinion, and the more angst and heat getting there, the better.

I call a little-city-that-feels-big located in the Canadian Maritimes my home, where I fill people’s heads with stuff for an ‘official’ living. I adore shoes and purses, Chai tea, hot guys, reining horses, cupcakes and surrounding myself with bright colors that make my world a happier place.

Most days will find me snugged up in my cozy bungalow with my two cats, one of which may be either too smart for his own good or exceptionally dumb—it's hard to tell the difference sometimes. Their escapades occasionally make it onto my blog.
You can find me on Facebook or, if you're interested in knowing more about me, visit my website.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

IMPROMPTU Visit #Author @KathyLLogan #FREE #eBook to 1 commenter!

Today I'd like to welcome Katherine Lowry Logan to an Impromptu "Thursdays" with Taryn visiting. Thanks for joining us and- Yay!

1 commenter will win a FREE copy of The Ruby Brooch, so make sure to use your blogger sign in or leave your email addy as You (@) Whatever (dot) com so I can contact you.

I will notify the winning commenter tomorrow morning with the Smashwords coupon code for your free download in the format of your choice.

What book(s) most influenced you as a writer?
In September 1996, I read my first Elizabeth Lowell’s book Winter Fire. I loved it. Over the next several weeks, I read her entire back list. Then I moved on to Linda Howard, Beatrice Small and several other romance authors. A year later, I’d read over 250 romance novels and had convinced myself I could write one, too. Without a plan in mind, I sat down at my computer and started writing. Ten weeks later, I wrote The End to a 115,000-word, time-travel romance. Of course, the story went through a dozen rewrites before it was published last month. 

What book do you read over and over again?
I really don’t read anything again. There are so many books on my TBR list that to reread a book deprives me of the joy of discovering something new. I remember reading the Tolkien Trilogy in the 1970s. I cried when I read the last page, but oddly, I never wanted to read the books again. The first experience was too incredible to replicate. 

Tuesday Trio-
1)      Movie-  My favorite movie of all time is Gone with the Wind. Second would be Somewhere in Time
2)      Music- I love Adele when I’m running, but I listen to all kinds of music, except hard rock. While I’m writing, I listen to Michael Dulin Radio on Pandora.  
3)      Decadent Dessert- I’m hooked on Orange Leaf Frozen Yogurt. I like to mix vanilla and chocolate and sprinkle chocolate chips and strawberries on top.

What’s the most interesting or bizarre bit of trivia you’ve learned from researching for a novel?
A week before Christmas 2010, I was researching guns and decided to visit one of our local gun shops. I walked through the front door of a very crowded gun store and stood there not sure where to go. A young man working the cash registered asked if he could help me. I said, “I need a gun that will shoot as many cows in the shortest amount of time.”
The store fell silent. A couple dozen men stared at me like I was crazy.  I cleared my throat and explained that I was a romance writer and that my heroine was caught in the middle of a buffalo stampede and needed a weapon. The shock wore off and answers started flying. “She’s needs . . .” I still laugh when I think of that visit. 

Novel on your Nightstand:
Who/what are you currently reading?
I’m always reading several books at the same time—fiction, non-fiction, and craft or marketing.  The three at the top of my Kindle list are: 
Fifty Shades of Grey (I have to find out what all the fuss is about!)
Mile Markers by Kristin Armstrong (A book about running and relationships)
How to Market Your EBook by Mike McCann

Whom would you cast as your Hero & Heroine if your book became a movie?
I’m open to suggestions:
·         Cullen is from Scotland and graduated from Harvard. He’s a lawyer, 6’2, 180, black hair and blue eyes, born in 1822. He has a Kennedy-esque charisma and a terrible temper.
·         Kit is 5’2”, long blond hair, green eyes, a paramedic with extensive survival training, and an expert equestrian, born in 1987, or so she thought. She’s spunky. Not particularly caught up in appearances, although she is an heiress to one of the top three Thoroughbred operations in the world. 

From the white-plank fenced pastures of Lexington, Kentucky to the beautiful Bay of San Francisco, The Ruby Brooch, a saga rich in detail and mystery, follows a young woman’s physical and emotional journey as she searches for her identity in the mid-nineteenth century. 

As the lone survivor of a car crash that killed her parents, paramedic Kit MacKlenna makes a startling discovery that further alters her life. A faded letter and a well-worn journal reveal that she was abandoned on her father’s doorstep as a baby. The only clues to her identity are a blood-splattered shawl, a locket that bears a portrait of a nineteenth-century man, and a Celtic brooch with mystical powers. Following notes in her late father’s journal, Kit sets out on a quest to solve the murders of her birth parents and discover her true identity. Under the guise of the Widow MacKlenna, Kit calls on the power of the ruby brooch and is swept back in time to Independence, Missouri in the year 1852. 

Upon arriving in the past, she encounters Cullen Montgomery, an egotistical Scotsman with a penchant for seducing widows. The San Francisco-bound lawyer happens to resemble the ghost who has haunted Kit since childhood. She quickly finds the Bach-humming, Shakespeare-quoting man to be over-bearing and his intolerance for liars threatens her quest.

If she can survive his accusations and resist his tempting and passionate embrace, she might be able to find the answers she seeks and return home without changing history or leaving her heart on the other side of time.

The Ruby Brooch is available at-

Katherine is a long distance runner and an avid reader who turned her love of reading into a passion for writing contemporary and historical romances.

A graduate of Rowan University in New Jersey, she earned a BA in Psychology with a minor in Criminal Justice. Following graduation, Katherine attended the Philadelphia Institute for Paralegal Training earning a General Practice Certification. She returned to Central Kentucky and worked for twenty years as a paralegal and law firm office manager. With an educational focus on psychology and the law, Katherine’s plots typically involved a mystery for the hero and heroine to solve while on an emotional journey seeking love and forgiveness.

She is currently working on a contemporary story that is a companion book to The Ruby Brooch. She plans to release the ebook on September 15, the same day she runs the Air Force Marathon in Dayton, OH. 

Katherine lives in Lexington, KY. She is a widow and a grandmother, and spends several weeks every year in New York City with three of her five grandchildren. The other two live in Northern Kentucky, making it possible to attend ballgames and Grandparents’ Day.

 You can find out more about Katherine at the following places-

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

#TuesdayswithTaryn Q&A with F.R. Warnock #Authors #Readers #Adventure

Tuesdays with Taryn
Click image above to purchase on Amazon Kindle

Please help me welcome F.R. Warnock to Tuesdays with Taryn.

What book(s) most influenced you as a writer?

The Haunting of Hill House – It’s the book that made me want to be a writer. I read it when I was 17 and still shiver when I think about it – it really got under my skin. I’m so far past 17 now that I can’t even see it anymore, but the images that book evoked are still with me. I don’t write suspense or horror but I hope the words I commit to paper will have that same power – to instill images and cause the reader to remember them for years to come.

What book do you read over and over again? Green Darkness by Anya Seton

Tuesday Trio- I have lots of loves – so I give you a trio of each

1) Movie- Shining Through with Michael Douglas & Melanie Griffith, National Treasure with Nicholas Cage, Tomb Raider with Angelina Jolie

2) Music- anything by the Eagles, Jimmy Buffet or Heart

3) Decadent Dessert- Cream Horns from Helen’s Bakery in Portsmouth, OH, my mom’s Black Raspberry Pie with Vanilla Ice Cream and anything I bake (I’m a really good baker.)

What’s the most interesting or bizarre bit of trivia you’ve learned from researching for a novel? I learned this from reading the book Sepulchre which I do consider as research since the subject matter is one I’m very interested in - That the Visigoths would build dams to stop the flow of a river – dig into the river bed and create a tomb for their ruler – tear out the dams and let the river return to its normal flow. The king and his treasure hidden for all time. – How cool is that?

Novel on your Nightstand:

Who/what are you currently reading? Again – my answer is in multiples – The Devil’s Gate by Clive Cussler, Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor, and Sepulchre by Kate Mosse.

Whom would you cast as your Hero & Heroine if your book became a movie? I have to choose a couple of Kentucky natives for the leads in the book of my heart which is set in Kentucky – (and yes it’s only in manuscript form and has never been submitted anywhere-yet !) - Ashley Judd would be perfect as the heroine and the hero would have to be George Clooney.

Check out F.R.'s current release- The Warrior's Drum

What happens when baseball-crazy Nick Thompson’s dad gets transferred to “worse than the middle of nowhere” Halleytown just as the Little League all-star team selection is about to begin—the year Nick is a shoe-in as the starting second baseman? Bradley J. Johnley, that’s what! An uncoordinated brainiac and fellow sixth grader, Bradley gets Nick embroiled in a 200-year old mystery involving a valuable necklace and a missing Native American artifact, complete with an attached curse. Come along for the adventure, as Nick and Bradley attempt to unravel the mystery, find the warrior’s drum and break the curse.

Author Bio: F.R. Warnock, grew up in a small town in northeastern Kentucky not far from the Scioto River Valley, the traditional home of the great Shawnee Nation. She discovered her love of baseball at age eleven, when her brother began playing Little League. The Warrior’s Drum is her first book for the younger reading crowd.


I have to say, my 9 year-old daughter and I read this together and we both loved the story and we both hope there are more stories like this to come from Ms. Warnock.

Other places you can purchase The Warrior's Drum

You can also find F.R. and several other WONDERFUL writers at
Great Local Writers

Monday, April 23, 2012

#MemoryLane Mondays- #Musically Inclined #childhood #music

I've always been musically inclined. Even as a child, my love of music has defined moments in my life. I can hear a song and be transported back to when I was 5, 10, 15, 20, etc. I think its in my blood—

My grandmothers on both sides of my family were truly musically inclined. My dad's mother played piano, my mom's mom played the organ, guitar and French harp (otherwise known as a harmonica.) My grandma on my mom's side taught me a little about the organ, but I never really took it up more than to pick at the keys and play a little tune by ear.

What I remember though is begging her to sing Tom Dooley and How Far is Heaven and play the guitar. I dragged a small radio with me everywhere, an old metal clothes hanger for an antenna, crying over The Devil Went Down to Georgia. I listened to Sha-Na-Na on 8-track and borrowed 8-tracks and records from my uncle of Juice Newton, Blondie, Barry Manilow and Anne Murray.

Many times my mom could be found washing dishes or cooking a meal and singing along to the radio or records of Alabama, Air Supply, Charlie Rich and John Conlee. My dad, working on some woodcraft project in the basement, usually listened to Garrison Keillor on public radio or Bob Seger & the Silver Bullet Band or James Taylor.
Because of the eclectic variety of music I grew up on and the birth of Mtv and music videos when I was 6, my taste in music runs wild and deep. I remember sitting in front of my mom's record player listening to music that pre-dated me- Herman's Hermits, Paul Revere & the Raiders, The Lovin' Spoonful, Lou Christie, the Beatles.

As soon as I got a cassette recording boombox with a radio, I'd stay up on the weekends recording The Crystals, Bobby Darin, Little Eva, The Supremes, The Jackson 5 on the oldies stations as well as Michael Jackson, Madonna, Expose, New Kids on the Block and Debbie Gibson on the Weekly Top 40.

I wore out my Olivia Newton-John Greatest Hits Vol. 2 on 33 1/3 and the Thriller album. I danced all over my room to She's So Unusual record of Cyndi Lauper and loved Rick Springfield's Hard to Hold soundtrack.

The 1st CD I bought was actually Eddie Money's The Sound of Money, which I still have and love.

Even now, I find my tastes vary and one day I can be totally immersed in A Perfect Circle or chillin' to Ben Taylor's gentle folksy vocals that remind me so much of his father- James Taylor.

My most current musical inclinations-
Payphone- Maroon 5
Call Me Maybe- Carly Rae Jepsen
Beekeeper's Daughter- The All-American Rejects
Brokenhearted- Karmin
Not Over You- Gavin DeGraw
Drive By- Train

Does music tie you to your memories- what are some of your favorites?

Saturday, April 21, 2012

#SCENTsational Saturdays- Through The Years- #Exclamation

Introduced in 1988, Exclamation has hints of peach, apricot, amber and sandalwood and it definitely leaves an impression.

When I smell this fragrance nowadays, I find it hard to believe I ever wore it when I was a quiet, shy chubby teenage girl. This was not, is not, a scent for the timid. This perfume shouted from the rooftops that you had arrived, you were there! EXCLAMATION! No ifs, ands or buts about it. Others would know you were coming before you entered the room.

The funniest thing, it gave me a busting headache and yet, I wore it. My mom HATED it- thought it the most loud odor she'd ever had the misfortune to gift to me at the holidays and dreaded every spritz of my bottle. I'm sure there were times she hoped that I'd finally hit the bottom of that little white bottle, but then, if I had allowance money, I'd head straight to the store to buy more.

Now I can do without the overpowering scent, but the thing I cherish most about it- the imagery and memories it conjures up- music and time, divided by decades, but one whiff of Exclamation and I'm there all over again- Take a musical journey with me-

Do you remember any of these songs?
What were some of your favorites late 80's/early 90's?

Man, I wish LL had the official video for this. LOVED that video SO much. He was such a cutie! Still is!

Have a SCENTsational Saturday!

Friday, April 20, 2012

I'm over at @Amy_Durham's #Blog Today- Come see me! #readers #writers #Author #Interview

Please stop by and see me today while I sit in with Amy and answer some questions. Would love the company as I'm making my rounds visiting other blogs.

#FFF- The #Heartbreaker by @maddiejames #TMPress @FictionWitches #Readers #Kindle #Amazon

Click image to purchase for Kindle

An Amazon Bestseller - Contemporary Romance

Lucki Stevenson spends most of her time coaching unruly teenagers instead of giving her heart a much-needed pep talk. And when all-grown-up, boy-next-door, Dr. Sam Kirk moves back to town, Lucki wants to forfeit the game of love completely. Sam broke her heart once before, and she won't give him a chance to do it again...

Returning home to care for his younger brother J.J., Sam is happy to accept Lucki’s expert advice about kids--and even happier that the tomboy he remembers is now a beautiful woman. When Lucki agrees to help him with J.J., Sam is sure he's on the road to success as an instant parent, and possibly as a husband--but first he’s got to convince Lucki that he's not the heartbreaker he once was, and that good guys do finish first...


This is a sweet southern romance with a lot of humor. The small town setting lends a rich atmosphere to the story, and I found the characters very likable and believable.” ~Amazon Review

"This is the second book of Maddie James that I've read for a review but it won't be my last. I love the way she writes and will look for more of her books in the future. I recommend this book - maybe you too can uncover another favorite author." ~Romancing the Book Reviews

Author Bio: Romance novelist Maddie James bounces between contemporary, historical, and paranormal worlds, as she pens stories within, and frequently crossing, a variety of romantic genres. With 30+ titles in print, under three pen names, she feels fortunate to spend her days working with some of the quirkiest characters around—those in her head, and in her life. She lives quietly with her muses, Calliope and Clio, who most days masquerade as four-legged furry creatures.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Pls #RT! #Readers I'm at @kristaames #blog #Author #Interview & #MeatballRecipe

Please don't forget to stop by Krista Ames'
A Passion for Romance
my Author Author Interview today!
I welcome the company & I'm sharing my
MEATBALL recipe!
You know you want it!

#Favorite #Books #Spotlight- #MySweetAudrina by #VCAndrews

(From the back blurb of the copy I have Copyright 1982)

V.C. Andrews, author of the phenomenally successful Dollanganger series, has created a fascinating new cast of characters in this haunting story of love and deceit, innocence and betrayal, and the suffocating power of parental love.

Audrina Adare wants so to be as good as her sister. She knew her father could not love her as he had loved her sister. Her sister was so special, so perfect—and dead.

Now she will come fact to face with the dangerous, terrifying secret that everyone knows. Everyone except...My Sweet Audrina
I started reading V.C. Andrews when I was a teenager. Honestly, I can't remember what year it was, but I had to be thirteen or fourteen because I can remember that the middle school library had copies of her books. My introduction was through the first four books of in the Dollanganger Series, starting with Flowers in the Attic. I remember borrowing my aunt's four books (later discovering the 5th one along with several other series).

She hadn't read them, but I saw them on her bookshelf and was mesmerized by the haunting cover art and blurbs. I remember going home that first night with them clutched in my fingers and being scared out of my mind about whether these were horror novels or something else. After reading the first chapter late at night (around midnight), I was so freaked out, thinking it was a horror novel, that I put it down, turned off the lights and huddled under the blankets.

Soon after that though I discovered the depth of her novels, the description and emotions she put into the story lines and I've aspired to write with that kind of vivid depth of feeling and visuals ever since. Though I love all the books that V.C. Andrews wrote, I slowly lost interest after the ghostwriter took over and supposedly wrote based on her notes once she passed away. I'm sorry Ghostwriter, but you have nothing on V.C.

And though I love the series books, My Sweet Audrina is one that I can take up and read in no time because it is a stand-alone. Every time I read it, I get so caught up in the story, I forget I've read it numerous times before and the tears still come at the same places, just like all the laughter and joy.

It's books like this that remind me that great books, just like great movies or music, always take us back to a good place, a reminder of heartaches, happiness and how deeply affected we can be by emotions.

Have a Great Thursday and don't forget to stop by
Krista Ames'
A Passion for Romance for my
AUTHOR, AUTHOR interview and my MEATBALL recipe!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

#WIPlash Wednesdays- Spring Broke Me

(Click images for larger, clearer versions)
Spring Break is over. :( I had a really wonderful visit with my family and friends but as always, the visit never lasts long enough. Usually the time away gives my brain and body a break from the daily routine we have during the school year. This time, I find I've come back with a lot of things weighing on my mind- Blog scheduling, promo'ing, and all sorts of other things that need my attention.
The plans changed on Saturday, as my husband was going to drive up after work, stay the night at my parents' and we'd head back on Sunday morning, but then he found out he'd probably have to work Mon-Fri rather than his regular Wed-Sat due to a small inventory they've planned at the warehouse for this coming weekend. Fly in the ointment.
Considering we needed to restock the cabinets with food, grocery shopping needed to be done, as well as getting the yard mowed in case the weather didn't permit me to take care of it during the day while he was at work. So we headed home Saturday evening, much to our daughter's dismay because she still wanted more time with Grandma and Pop-Pop and she was NOT happy that we had to leave early.
Sunday we tackled the grocery shopping and the yard, got the kids ready for heading back to school after a week without a regular bedtime and days away from books and homework. It's time to knuckle down and knock out the rest of the school year. Less than a month now, I do believe.
So, anyway...Monday I balanced up the checkbook, put bills out in the mail, kids on the bus, laundry into dryer and started another load, ate a bowl of cereal, unpacked my laptop and then collapsed on the bed and took a nap with the Miz until 10 AM.
Then I spent the rest of the day finishing laundry, playing catch up on email, scheduling blog posts (I've fallen so far behind) so I have "unwritten" blogs lined up in the drafts where I can easily see the titles of what kind of posts I have coming up and give myself time to think about what I'll even write. I also spent some time out of doors snapping all these great photos of my roses and irises that are in bloom at the moment.
Tuesday was spent doing more of the same, when I'd really rather have been writing. Yes, what good is WIPlash Wednesdays if I write nothing? Honestly, these writing spurts are driving me insane. There seriously are not enough hours in the day for me to accomplish all the things I want to or need to and sometimes I feel like I'm just barely keeping up. When will the world slow down so I can catch up?
I need focus and a schedule and it needs to include writing. Most of what I spend my time doing focuses around social networking and building those skills and getting the word out, etc. Monday night I lay in bed, wide away for an hour before my busy brain would let me nod off to dream land, just because everyone else in the house was asleep and I felt obligated to go to bed when they did. Unfortunately, I wasted that hour staring into the darkness, with only the black and gray shadows illuminating the room, vague blocky images taunting me that I should have gotten up and used that time wisely.
I need to listen to myself more and stop letting all the outside interference create static so that I can't hear what I need to.

How do you find balance?
Is there such a thing?
What do you do when life gets out of control and you need to slow things down?
Do you take a step back to breath?
Share with me what helps you.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

#TuesdayswithTaryn Q&A with #mystery #Author @JudyAlter

Tuesdays with Taryn

Join me today in welcoming mystery author & fellow TMPer, Judy Alter to the blog-

What book(s) most influenced you as a writer? Oh, gosh. Nancy Drew, Francis Parkinson Keyes, and on up to today’s mystery writers—Sue Grafton, J. A. Jance, Julia-Spencer Fleming, Deborah Crombie, Diane Mott Davidson, Susan Wittig Albert. Yet my own writing is not, to my mind, as complex as any of theirs. Then there’s the whole other side of me that wrote about women of the American West, and there I’d say Owen Wister’s The Virginian intrigued me, and Elmer Kelton’s entire body of work taught me a lot about writing about the West.

What book do you read over and over again? Wallace Stegner’s Angle of Repose

Tuesday Trio-

1) Movie- not a moviegoer, but Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid was a big influence when I wrote Sundance, Butch, and Me, about Etta Place (now available on Kindle, Nook, and other sites).. That was, however a 1969 movie—you can tell it stuck in my head until the ‘90s when I wrote the book. And I really did like Julia and Julie. I keep meaning to see Midnight in Paris and The Help. Loved the book of the latter.

2) Music- Folk musicJudy Collins, Joan Baez, Neil Diamond; also some blues and jazz

3) Decadent Dessert- chocolate mousse; almost anything chocolate.

What’s the most interesting or bizarre bit of trivia you’ve learned from researching for a novel?

That Etta Place, the woman who rode with the Hole-in-the-Wall Gang and was The Sundance Kid’s lover, probably ended up in my hometown of Fort Worth, Texas, running a respectable boarding house, and probably died in a house fire.

Novel on your Nightstand:

Who/what are you currently reading? Clobbered by Camembert by Avery Aames

Whom would you cast as your Hero & Heroine if your book became a movie?

I have no idea because I don’t keep up with current movies or stars. I don’t think Julia Roberts would be right as Kelly O’Connell, but I don’t know who would. One of my daughter’s friends suggests Reese Witherspoon, Matt Damon or Ewan McGregor.

No Neighborhood for Old Women, the second Kelly O’Connell Mystery, following Skeleton in a Dead Space

When a serial killer begins targeting older women in Fort Worth’s Fairmount neighborhood, realtor/renovator Kelly Jones investigates, in spite of the pleas of her companion, policeman Mike Shandy, and her assistant, the colorful Keisha, that she stay out of it. Kelly knows a serial killer will hurt business, and she worries about the frightened old women in the neighborhood. And when Claire Guthrie, a friend and former client, shows up at Kelly’s front door announcing that she’s just shot her husband in the butt, Kelly becomes her champion. Kelly knows about bad marriages and bad husbands from her own experience. Then Kelly’s mom, the needy Cynthia O’Connell, decides to move to Fort Worth to be near her grandchildren. Kelly, a harried, hassled, and loving single mom of two young girls, unwittingly puts her children, her mom, and herself in danger and almost derails her love life.