Category Archives: Oh, Baby!

FREE BOOK!

Seriously!

You can enter to win a chance to win the first book in Darynda Jones’s Charley Davidson series, that I loved unreservedly until the end of book 9. Now I am only loving it reservedly. For reasons.

However, if you’d like to obtain your very own copy of the first book in the series, you can enter to win here by agreeing to follow me on Amazon! (I just picked up the 12th book in the 13-book series last night. Because I love Charley and I have hope!)

Other freebies, you request?

If you want to win a Kindle Fire, I’ve got the giveaway for you. It involves signing up for a few author newsletters, but they’re probably all awesome authors…I know this, because I’m one of them.

I know I’m way, way behind in book reviewing. I have a number to do. Last autumn –between the kid, my shoulder, and my broken brain–kicked my ass.

My kid is so much better that I can’t even describe it. It was almost like he was possessed by a demon for two months. (And then, the demon leapt into my phone? Hmmm….plausible.) BUT, the old priest and the young priest and the best kindergarten teacher who’s ever lived exorcised that bullshit and things are so, so good now. I’ve gone from cautiously optimistic to status quo.

My shoulder is immensely better. I have five more PT sessions left, but my pain levels are almost always less than two, and even when it flares, it relaxes quickly. My strength is still lacking, but my range of motion and flexibility is getting better.

And finally – ahhh, the broken brain. This was the real problem. The reason my writing productivity was the lowest it’s been in four (seriously – FOUR!years. The other issues definitely compounded it, but I guess there’s only so long you can hold the crazy at bay before it comes back for you.

I’m not the best at medication compliance. Except for antibiotics. I always finish my antibiotics. Everything else? Nope. I feel better, or get bored, or decide that the professionals don’t necessarily know what they’re talking about. So I quit. And then, rather than tell anyone I’ve quit, I also quit seeing the prescribing doc. This was less of a problem in the previous years, because it was always easy for me to find someone new when needed. Now that I no longer work at a medical center, it’s suddenly more challenging.

I haven’t completely solved everything, but I made it through the darkest quarter of the year (Sept-December are always, always, always the worst for me), I have a temporary solution, and I’m feeling productive and hopeful.

My General, my Space Mom…and even now, I can’t believe she’s gone.

It’s a long journey and there’s still so much stigma. But you know what? If Carrie Fisher can talk about it, then so can I. Just a little. I’m a work in process, but I’m getting there.

Bonus: I’ve written 8/9 days this month and will finish The Broken World this week. (My cover is underway! AHHHH!)

76 days until you can find out what happens when Eleanor opens the final gate!

Thank you for all your support during the end of last year. It means a lot to me. I got a lot of nice messages from readers (and friends) (and friends who are readers and readers who’ve become friends) and they meant a lot to me.

Pretty sure this is going to be an awesome year…

So Long 2017!

This year has been a huge mixed bag for me.

January had a trip to Breckenridge with The Beer Guy, then rats (!), then moving in with aforementioned Beer Guy.

You’re welcome for posting this picture and not a different January memory.

February, I turned 40 and published my first book (The Cardinal Gate is currently on sale for $0.99 – get yours today!)

Look at this magnificent cake that my friend Melissa made for me? How could it get any better than this?

Buy Me! Review Me!

In March, we celebrated the Beer Guy’s birthday, and I spent a lot of time with friends.

Please enjoy this dramatic reenactment of the Beer Guy’s birthday karaoke, in which I failed to actually get him in the picture.

In April, Alvie Bean turned five. I can’t even with that information, and that was months ago. I also started a new job!

In May, the Beer Guy and I went to the coast, where I started the outline for what will be the Oracle Bay series (due out Fall 2018).

RIP, that necklace whose pendant is lost.

June was amazing. I got to see NKOTB (and I TOUCHED JOEY JOE MCINTYRE!) and then, at the end of the month, The Waning Moon came out!

That is Joey McIntyre and my hand. TOUCHING!

July…existed? I was hard at work on Ruby Blade, got to know a lot of new, cool author friends better, and my mom came to visit and took the kiddo to the coast.

I love this kid like whoa.

August was busy AF. I did my first (and only!) book reading/signing at a local bookstore, and then, courtesy the Beer Guy, had champagne after with an assortment of my favorite local people!

There was also an eclipse and a kittening.

This is my “what? another motherfucking swear word?” face

Alvie with Rupurrt Giles

In September, my boy started school and had his first ER visit in 4 years!

First day of kindergarten!

In October, Alvie started a new kindergarten (he’d been on the waitlist for the Spanish Immersion kindergarten and we got a place at the last possible moment) and the Beer Guy & I went to Puerto Vallarta with his family. I have zero pictures of us together in Mexico, but I swear we were there! Last, but not least, I released my third (3rd!) book, The Ruby Blade (on the best of all holidays, Halloween.)

First day of kindergarten, take 2

This is the only picture I have of us together. I am in it only by virtue of having taken the photo.

Tiny Captain Picard!

November…was kind of a shit show.  Presumably good things happened. There was Thanksgiving? And a triumphant return to karaoke after a couple months off. And no one got expelled, and I had my first ER visit in 4 years!

I need a scribe. And a chauffeur. And a butler. And a pool boy.

And now – this year is nearly done. The last 2.5 months have been some of the hardest months I’ve endured in ages. The last 2.5 years have been hard. I’m so, so lucky to have so many bright spots.

I have three books published, and plans to publish 4 next year. I have an up-and-coming freelance business and my calendar is almost full for the first half of 2018. I have a dayjob that pays me in money, a healthy kid who is hopefully losing his first tooth right now, and a patient, wonderful partner who has put up with a lot of shit this year and swears he’s sticking around.

GAH! This guy! (Also, are we or are we not cute AF?)

I’m really looking forward to 2018. I’ve got some big goals for next year, and I’m looking forward to sharing them with you!

I hope your holiday season has been filled with light, happiness, and the family of your choosing. See you next year!

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Writerly Wednesday: WINNING! Edition

If you’re interested in winning (and who isn’t?), there are a couple contests open right now that super benefit me personally. I mean are awesome opportunities for you.

The first is to win a free Ilona Andrews book! I mean, she’s so good. SO GOOD! Free book!

Click the link to learn how to enter to win!

 

This second opportunity is amazeballs. Like super amazeballs. Look at all this Buffy stuff you can win? #buffyforever #whatwouldBuffydo #itallcomesbacktobuffy

This prize package, from the best TV show ever, is pretty fucking fantastic.

Click the image to win $500 worth of Buffy stuff (and sign up for some awesome author newsletters).

 

Update on the writing.

I am done with editing projects for the next month or so. That means I can really get back into the writing. I’m just about half way done with Eleanor #4. I think it’s harder to rewrite a book where I’m mining from something I had before than to write from scratch. It’s halfway between a rewrite and a first draft, and it’s driving me crazy. This might be the first year in ages I don’t win NaNoWriMo…and I’m worry really hard at being okay with that. I have my excuses at the ready.

  1. I’ve edited four novels and two novellas in the past 2 months.
  2. I’ve worked an average of 40 hours/week at the day job in the same time period
  3. I spent a week in Mexico where I didn’t get nearly as much work done as I’d hoped
  4. The last month, since returning from our trip, have been the most stressful parenting month I’ve experienced in 5.5 years. It’s not my story, it’s Bean’s, and he’s at an age where I need to start moderating what stories I tell, but suffice it to say, I’ve cried more in the last month than I have since I was drowning in post partum depression. Parenting is hard, yo.

But all those excuses aren’t really enough to explain why I’m so far behind my word goal. I was hoping to finish the book by the end of the month, but 12/15 is looking more realistic – and that’s only if I pull myself together and write.

Speaking of writing, the newsletter will be coming out next Wednesday – so if you want to catch up on Raj’s story before the newest chapter comes out – use the sidebar to subscribe!

(Psssst….there’s a small possibility that The Cardinal Gate will be on super Black Sale Friday – Cyber Monday Sale. If you haven’t gotten your copy yet, you’ll have a chance starting Friday!)

Gotta Have Goals (November 2017)

Yeah, maybe it’s the middle of November almost, but bite me. The last two weeks have been wicked hard. The stress of being mid-divorce and facing unemployment have nothing on the stress of watching your child suffer* and not be able to help.

So, I’m a little behind on a lot of things. I have book reviews to write/publish for Mel Sterling as well as for Lit Buzz and a few others.

I am so fucking far behind on NaNoWriMo, which is unfortunate – not because I particularly care about winning (although this is the first year I didn’t buy my winner’s shirt in advance, and that’s probably why I’m not doing well), but because I do care about finishing Eleanor #4 and getting the beta-reading and editing process moving.

I am, fortunately, not behind on my editing projects.

I am super far behind on sleep, and as such have just been randomly falling asleep lately.

BUT – I have goals for this month (and a brief report on how I did in October).

 

October Goals

  1. I signed up for a thanksgiving 5K. My goal – to finish it without hating myself, whatever that means for me that day. – Ummm – I don’t even know why this was an October goal. Thanksgiving is totally this month.
  2. I need to be mostly done with Eleanor book 4 by the end of the month. – Oops. Not even close. Not even half.
  3. Stay on top of book marketing and don’t back out because of “hard” or “fear.” – Not bad for a newbie!
  4. Find a way to forgive everyone who made me angry cry today due to the colossal fuck-up that happened with my Bean’s after-school care situation. Note: this might be the hardest. Note 2: I think everything’s figured out. It was only two hours of Wednesday panic on my part. – This is so in that past. SUCCESS!
  5. Continue to eat 3x/day and get to bed by 11 on work nights. Work on popping out of bed a little faster in the morning. Meditate (with the bean). Moisturize. Self-care. – Eating = SUCCESS! Bed time = FAIL! Meditation & Moisturize & Self-Care = FAIL!

So – not that great.

November Goals

  1. Hit 90K words on Eleanor 4
  2. Finish all editing projects on time
  3. Find one new editing client
  4. Move 30 minutes every day
  5. Find a way to be present and let go of stress before I have a nervous breakdown

 

*Bean is okay. We are all okay. But sometimes life is hard, yo.

Meh Monday 

The last seven days have been a rollercoaster. The ups – The Ruby Blade has finally come out! – and downs – so much anxiety I can hardly stand it and a fuckton of stuff that I can’t talk about now (maybe someday) – have left me in a place that’s difficult to people from. 

Three books in eight months is not bad at all.


Now is when I cancel plans with vague excuses (not feeling well, etc) to avoid the additional stress of having to interact with other human beings. There are very few people with whom I enjoy spending any sort of time when I feel like this. Very few might actually be one people. 

I’m going to try to pull my life back together this week. For me that means finishing two major editing projects, writing 15k words on Book 4, and eating regularly. 

In the meantime, here’s a picture of my sweet boy dressed as Jean-Luc Picard. 

He’s wearing light saber shoes and Darth Vader pants and his star fleet shirt is hiding a Superman t-shirt. #nerd