Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Wednesday Reads and I’m a Little Mad

Here’s what I read the past week:

Book #53

Dates read: October 5-14
Title: “Dark Legacy”
Year of publication: 2009
Author: Anna DeStefano
Genre: Paranormal romance
Series: Legacy #1
# of Pages: 307
Paper or plastic: Mass market paperback
How obtained: Free from a convention
Blurb from book: “Die!” scream her nightmares. The voice is her sister’s, the compulsion stronger than any ordinary dream.
    Maddie Temple can’t go through this again. Her twin has been in a coma for the last ten years. Their psychic link was severed. At least, that’s what she thought.
    But there’s a lot Maddie doesn’t know—about the 200-year-old curse on her family, about the shadowy group that wants to exploit the Temple twins’ powers for themselves, about the sexy psychiatrist offering to help her. The only way to find the answers and avoid being pulled into the abyss of madness is to trust her heart and confront her dark legacy.
My thoughts: This is one of those books that I nearly threw across the room when I reached the end. Why? Because the ending was not satisfying. Wait, it would have had to have an ending for that to happen. This story isn’t over. Not by a long-shot (I still don’t know what the 200-year-old curse is!). It’s a tactic some authors use to get you to buy the next book, but this book would have had to be great to rope me in, and it wasn’t. I saw the low rating (and bad reviews) on Goodreads, but gave it a try anyway because it’s a romance. Except it really wasn’t (not in the way I like them). Yay me for sticking with it. Not so yay for the author, because I really have no desire to continue reading this series. Not when I don’t trust the author.

Can I be a little mad? And no, this has nothing to do with the book. I arrived to what I thought was an appointment with my radiation oncologist on Monday in preparation for radiation treatments (which are to start in Nov). But… he said the appointment was for the following Monday. Not so, I said. I won’t be in town (so I know I wouldn’t have agreed to that date!). He wants to wait until after I see my surgeon, which I see tomorrow. Luckily, he can see me that day, after that appointment. The not so lucky part was that he hinted that the margins might not have come back good enough and I might need more surgery.

More surgery? I specifically told my surgeon to take MORE than was needed. That I wasn’t worried about disfigurement or anything like that. So yeah, I’m kind of pissed. I sure hope the radiation oncologist was wrong because I really don’t want to have to go through another surgery. And really, why should I? Won’t the radiation kill whatever cancer cells I might have remaining? I’ll let you know Friday what I find out.

So… Have you read any books this year that you wanted to toss after reaching the end? What did you do with it? Like all of my free reads this year, I’m giving mine away (via my newsletter), but I feel so bad about the ending, I’m also giving away a bonus book. Gotta keep my subscribers HAPPY!

Happy Reading!

Stacy

Monday, October 16, 2017

Publishing Update and Have Lunch With Some Authors

I finally got the print format for Ghostly Liaison and My Sunny Vampire uploaded to Createspace, so now the waiting game begins. I’ll still get a proof copy first (because you never know…), but I sure hope I’m done with these two.

Bite Me, I’m Yours is with Hubby (via Enterprise Book Services) to format the e-book and paperback. He said I should get the e-book version by today to upload. It’ll probably be a few days later for the print format. I just hope it’s all done before I leave on my vacation (which starts Friday—yay!).

By the way, here’s the new cover to Bite Me, I’m Yours. Isn’t it great? I think Maria Zannini (www.bookcoverdiva.blogspot.com) has done a wonderful job in creating my covers. And she puts up a lot from me, too (because I can be so indecisive at times).

So, to sum it up, here are the statuses of the following books I’m working on:

  • My Sunny Vampire: e-books available for sale; print book in process
  • Bite Me, I’m Yours: e-books and print book in process
  • Ghostly Liaison: e-books available for sale; print book in process
  • Ghostly Interlude: with copy editor.

I can’t believe how time consuming it’s been to get these books out. I DESERVE that vacation now! And I’m really hoping I get some writing done because yes, that does sound like a fun thing to do on vacation. It’s been way too long since I wrote anything NEW.

If you’re in the Cincinnati area (or even if you’re not—haha!) and you’d like to have lunch with a bunch of us authors (because hey, that’s fun!), here’s a great opportunity and it’s for a good cause, too. The Book Chicks of Cincinnati is holding a Christmas luncheon/book signing with proceeds going to the Toys for Tots. I had a blast last year (as did everyone), but if we don’t get more tickets sold, it could very well be cancelled this year. L You can find all the details HERE, but before you go registering, email me first (stacy @ stacymckitrick . com—without the spaces). I’ll send you a code to get $5 off.

SPORTS! Wayne HS won on Friday, with 14 seconds left in the game!!! I even found a video of it HERE (it's not long, less than a minute). Aaack. Too exciting! Saturday was a nice sports day. OSU won. USC won. Penguins won. Dodgers won. And WVU won (yes, I like them, too). And Sunday the Steelers squeaked by KC in a nerve-wracking win, the Rams beat the Jags, and the Dodgers won it in the 9th inning with a walk off home run!! They’re up 2-0 in the NLCS. I could use more fun sports weekends like that.

So… Which sports are you enjoying/focusing on now? You can see what interest me (and did you notice I don’t mention the NBA? Yeah, I don’t like them). This certainly is the busy season, isn’t it?

Happy Monday!

Stacy

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Wednesday Reads and I’m Getting There

After Monday’s fiasco, I still managed to get My Sunny Vampire back into the stores (Amazon, B&N, and Smashwords for now). That’s two down and one to go (as long as you don’t count the print books—still need to work on those). Well… actually, two to go. I still have Ghostly Interlude to publish, but it’ll be after Oct 23 (because that’s when my copy editor can get to it). But I’m getting there. And hopefully they’ll all sell like popular books. Hopefully.

Here’s what I read the past week:

Book #52

Dates read: September 27-October 4
Title: “I Know a Secret”
Year of publication: 2017
Author: Tess Gerritsen
Genre: Suspense
Series: Rizzoli & Isles #12
# of Pages: 314
Paper or plastic: Hardback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: Two separate homicides, at different locations, with unrelated victims, have more in common than just being investigated by Boston PD detective Jane Rizzoli and medical examiner Maura Isles. In both cases, the bodies bear startling wounds—yet the actual cause of death is unknown. It’s a doubly challenging case for the cop and the coroner to be taking on, at a fraught time for both of them. As Jane struggles to save her mother from the crumbling marriage that threatens to bury her, Maura grapples with the imminent death of her own mother—infamous serial killer Amalthea Lank.
    While Jane tends to her mother, there’s nothing Maura can do for Amalthea, except endure one final battle of wills with the woman whose shadow has haunted her all her life. Though succumbing to cancer, Amalthea hasn’t lost her taste for manipulating her estranged daughter—this time by dangling a cryptic clue about the two bizarre murders Maura and Jane are desperately trying to solve.
    But whatever the dying convict knows is only a piece of the puzzle. Soon the investigation leads to a secretive young woman who survived a shocking abuse scandal, an independent horror film that may be rooted in reality, and a slew of martyred saints who died cruel and unusual deaths. And just when Rizzoli and Isles think they’ve cornered a devilish predator, the long-buried past rears its head—and threatens to engulf more innocent lives, including their own.
My thoughts: I think this series will always entertain me. I like seeing where Jane and Maura’s lives are going as well as solving the crime. And this one has some strange twists to it; fooled me at the end.

Would you believe that I actually sold TWO copies of My Sunny Vampire on Amazon between the time the book finally finished processing and I was able to unpublish it? Why can’t I sell them like that ALL THE TIME? Because yeah, it’s out there and…**chirp chirp** Still, I feel bad those two copies went out there without the italics. I hope the reader doesn’t become too confused. Or maybe I got lucky and Amazon automatically sends the most current version? Well, I can hope!

So… What are you reading now? I’m reading a book I got from a convention that is turning out better than the reviews led me to believe. Which just goes to show, you can’t always go by the reviews.

Happy Reading!

Stacy

Monday, October 9, 2017

When You Can’t Sleep…

Got so busy last night uploading My Sunny Vampire to KDP, Nook, and Smashwords, that I never got around to writing up a post for this morning. Then I woke up at 3am.

No, the blog wasn’t calling me. My book was. Hubby had mentioned on Friday (yes, Friday!) that the italics hadn’t come across when he was formatting it for print. I never bothered to check the e-book.

Until 3am this morning.

Yep, no italics anywhere. Ugh!

Smashwords thankfully had already denied the book (the epub failed something), and it appears I might have been able to stop publishing it on Nook, but I can’t pull the book from KDB until it finishes processing.

What a mess. I just want to cry.

Wait, I might have done a little of that already. *sniff, sniff*

Now that I know what kept me up and I’ve done all I can do at this time, I still can’t sleep. So why not write?

I have to say, it doesn’t hurt to sleep. I’m so bound up by this bra the hospital gave me that I can sleep on my side without any pain. And I’m not taking any pain medication, either (and I hope I won’t have to—hate taking that stuff). Of course, it’s not helping that the area is starting to itch.

I know that’s a good sign that it’s healing, but man, it’s driving me nuts!

Football yesterday was pretty nasty. Don’t know what team showed up against the Jaguars, but it sure wasn’t the Steelers I know. And I had hoped the Rams could have pulled out a win against the Seahawks, but it wasn’t meant to be, I guess. L

Looking forward to being able to actually WATCH my first hockey game this season. I think the Pens are on NBC Sports on Wednesday. I might even check out the Vegas Golden Knights this week (they’re on late one day). I’ve become a fan of that team because of Fleury (I love that goalie!).

So… When you can’t sleep, what do you do? Toss and turn? Or go to another room and read or something? I might try the reading part next. I refuse to toss and turn.

Happy Monday!

Stacy

Friday, October 6, 2017

I Scared Hubby

Thank you for all the well wishes! My surgery went fine (after some unpleasant pre-operation procedures) in that the doctor thinks he got it all and only had to remove two lymph nodes for testing. I’ll know all the results when I see him on the 19th, the day before we leave for our California trip. He said he’d send me on my way with good news. I sure hope so.

But Wednesday night Hubby didn’t think it went so well. You see, I had problems coming out of anesthesia. Something both his parents had basically died from.

I was supposed to come home on Wednesday. Told Hubby I’d probably be starving, since I wouldn’t have eaten anything all day. Instead, I came to groggy and nauseous (Hubby said I was unresponsive, which scared the you know whatsis out of him), and I couldn’t keep anything down (food was the last thing I wanted). Doctor thought it best I spend a night in the hospital.

I was a mess. I kept thinking, what if this was my heart surgery? And will I have to go through all that again? Gosh, I hope not. I was miserable. I hate feeling nauseous. And Hubby felt a lot better when I started talking coherently with him. I don't think he'd have gone home to sleep if I hadn't.

I woke up in the morning with a headache, but once I got some coffee in me, I felt tons better (those caffeine withdrawals will get you every time). I arrived home yesterday afternoon feeling much better. Actually ate something!

The pain isn’t as bad as I thought it would be, and I’m only on ibuprofen. For now. I have some vicodin, but I’ll probably only use it before bedtime. At least until it doesn’t hurt to lie down (because this gal likes to sleep on her side!).

So… Who, besides me, is looking forward to a nice, uneventful weekend? And have you ever scared your significant other?

Happy Friday!

Stacy

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Wednesday Reads and Today’s the Day

Today’s the day I get this cancer cut out of me. I hope they get it all. And I hope I get to come home tonight. As long as I come out of anesthesia okay, I will. Because, hey, there’s a hockey game on TV at 8pm (Let’s go Pens!). Sure hope I can stay awake to watch it. J

I’m also hoping to get a lot of reading done today (since I was told there’s a lot of lag time before my surgery), but at least I do have one book to report this week. Here’s what I read the past week:

Book #51

Dates read: September 15-27
Title: “Tempting the Light”
Year of publication: 2016
Author: Bonnie Gill
Genre: Paranormal romantic comedy
Series: L.A.M.P.S. #1
# of Pages: 263
Paper or plastic: Trade paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: Bad luck magnet Abby Fitzpatrick gets fired, catches her boyfriend cheating with a mime, and is cursed by an evil genie who pops out of a tampon box. She’s bound and determined to remove the spell and, as fate would have it, the hottest guy she’s ever met is out to kill her.
    River Stone, a Cryptid hunter for Legends and Myths Police Squad (L.A.M.P.S.), poses as sheriff for Abby’s hometown of Haber Cove, New Jersey. He’s out to find and capture a man-eating gnome and bag the legendary Jersey Devil monster. Little does he realize, the woman who catches his heart is the same creature that he was sent to destroy.
    Tempting the Light is the first novel in the L.A.M.P.S. series that features hunky secret agents who find true love while hunting and slaying dangerous Cryptids.
My thoughts: If you’re into crazy-humorous events, then give this book a try. Definitely light-hearted.

I’ve got some good news. I set up Ghostly Interlude on Goodreads. So if you’ve been waiting to add it to your “Want to Read” list, you don’t have to wait any longer. And to help you out, here’s the link for the book page: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36347633-ghostly-interlude

Happy Reading!

Stacy

Monday, October 2, 2017

45 Degrees? Hello, October!

The house felt a little cooler than usual when I woke up yesterday. There was a good reason for that, too. Seemed it got a bit chilly out side: 45 degrees! Well, that’s what it was at 8:30am. Might have been colder before then.

Boy, October struck quickly!

I like walking in the morning, but not when it’s that cold. I foresee future walks at the fitness center. Which is just as well. I kind of need to exercise, too. But not this week. Probably not next week, either. But I can keep walking (doctor said so), I just hope it’s outside and not at the fitness center. I really hate walking on the treadmill.

Although, I tend to read more when I do. Hmmm…

I’m hosting Sizzle and Sass (over on Facebook) this week. If you have a Facebook account, come on over and say hi. It gets lonely there sometimes. Okay, most times. Not many people see my posts. Which is kind of ironic when Facebook keeps telling me I need to post more. If they want me to post more, they should share my posts with more people! Or at least the people who have liked my page. Is that too much to ask? Apparently so.

The Steelers won yesterday! Yay! So did the Rams! Super yay! It was a good football day yesterday. It wasn’t so good Friday night. Wayne (HS) got their butts kicked. As did USC (Trojans). Ouch.

So… Are you a fan of fall? Do you like the colder temps? Fall never bothered me so much when I grew up in California. Now it does. I don’t like being reminded that summer is over and winter isn’t far ahead.

Plus, all those leaves! Ugh.

Happy Monday!

Stacy

Friday, September 29, 2017

There’s That C Word Again

I guess life, or something, decided that Hubby shouldn’t have all the fun. Nope. It decided I should experience the fun with him.

That’s right. I have cancer. Breast cancer.

I found out the day after I returned from Dragon Con. Certainly hadn’t seen that coming, either, because I’ve had breast issues for decades. Breast issues that had always been benign.

I went in for my annual mammogram back in July. It was my first annual exam after having a biopsy back in January 2016 for a suspicious shadow on my ultrasound (one that came back negative, but I was told to come back in six months. That mammogram came out okay, so they put me back on the yearly schedule.) This time they found something suspicious in the same area as before. Calcifications, they called it. Probably from the previous biopsy, but just to be sure…

After all the mess with Hubby, I went ahead with another biopsy. Better safe than sorry, I said. Truer words were never spoken.

When it came to make the appointment with general surgery to find out the results of a biopsy I was sure would be like all my others—negative—the only open spot I could make was after Dragon Con. Probably just as well. Don’t know how much fun I would have had with that hanging over me.

Surgery is scheduled for Oct 4th. I decided to go with the lumpectomy, followed by radiation (which will start in November). Radiation kind of scared me, what with my leaky heart valve, but I was assured that it won’t be an issue. Whew!

Prognosis is good, though, since they caught it early. And I probably won’t need chemotherapy (that’ll be determined after surgery, when they remove some lymph nodes), since the cancer is so small. So small that I can’t even feel it.

So… if it’s been over a year since you (or a loved one) have had a mammogram, go get one now. I never thought this would happen to me and I’m soooooo thankful I get the yearly exam. You just never know.

Stacy

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

No Wednesday Reads, But I Have Some Pictures

I didn’t post anything on Monday because I was a little busy on Sunday. You see… My son got married!!

And I haven’t finished the book I was sure I’d have read by now, so no books to report. Which means I can post what I was going to post on Monday, but got too busy doing other crap.

Because apparently crap is taking over my life!

But Sunday was a great day. The wedding was fun. The ceremony started with a little bit of Princess Bride. They sealed it with a kiss while the Mario Cart (game) winning tone played (have to know the game to get that). And they walked up the aisle as husband and wife to Men in Tights.

Yep. Lots of fun. Here are a few pictures I took.

They were married at an old theatre, which was renovated to hold the wedding ceremony and reception. So they got to dress up the marquee.

I've only watched Princess Bride once (don't shoot me!!), but I'm guessing this is also in reference to that film. If not, someone please enlighten me.

My son loves monkeys. When he was told to design his groom "cake" he said he wanted a cookie instead and that he would have a monkey bridal couple on the top. This big cookie is actually six cookies (3 different sizes), with icing in between the layers.
 
Here's a close up shot of the topper. My son had this specially made. I think it turned out so cute!

The wedding cake was pretty. And yummy.

But the topper was super funny! If you can't read it, it says "Mutual Weirdness Forever."

Hopefully if you enlarge this you can read it better. It's quite funny!

This is the back side.

My one good shot of the wedding party. My daughter (on the far right) was one of the groomsmen. And Ashley's daughter (now my granddaughter!) is on the far left.

And here are the newlyweds cutting the cake.

I'm sure I'll get better pictures later (there were two photographers roaming about). This was about all I got that came in clear! It was a fun day for sure and I'm so happy for them.

No honeymoon for them yet, though. That'll happen in February (due to work schedules). And they're going to Hawaii!!


I was kind of hoping I’d get back to writing my next book by now, but it hasn’t happened. Yet. Soon, though. Soon. I can FEEL it!

Happy Reading!

Stacy

Friday, September 22, 2017

Asking the Right Questions

I “subscribe” to a lot of writer e-mail groups. I often see writers asking how other writers manage their time to get their books written (because they want to get 2-3-4 books published a year). And it got me wondering: Will I ever write that many books in a year? What happens if I don’t?

It started to stress me out!

Then I realized I was asking myself the wrong questions. No two writers are the same. What works for someone else won’t work for me, because of our goals. So I changed the questions to: What’s my goal in writing? What do I hope to get out of it?

And then it clicked! And relieved me a great deal. I didn’t start out to make a LIVING at writing books. I mean, if that happens, GREAT. But when I started that path to publication, my main goal was to obtain a fun retirement job, to make enough for fun trips. Do I need to write 2-3-4 books a year to get that? Gosh, I hope not. I don’t know if I’d enjoy writing as much if that were the case.

As it is, I’m still waiting on earning that fun money. Good thing Hubby hasn’t retired yet, because it’ll probably take a few more published books before we see any of that money. And that’s okay. I’m in no hurry, because he’s in no hurry to retire.

It’s just as well, because publishing is not a get-rich-quick endeavor. You have to be patient for that long haul. Good thing I have patience!

Writing will be my forever retirement job, though. I love how it can go wherever I go. And if I manage to write more than one book a year, yay! But I can’t let it get me down if I don’t, because that isn’t my overall goal.

So I’ll stay on the slow and steady pace I’m on. It’ll eventually pay off and it won’t stress me out. I’ve got enough stress without adding to it.

So… Is it hot where you are? Today is the first day of Fall. And it’s one of the hottest days of the year around here. I’m starting to think the calendar got a little screwed up this year. Not that I’m looking forward to cooler weather. I’m not. Really!

Happy Fall!

Stacy

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Wednesday Reads and Summer TV Shows

I’m two-thirds through Ghostly Interlude before I return it to my editor. Should finish it by tomorrow (because today became a busy day). Here’s what I read the past week:

Book #50

Dates read: September 6-14
Title: “Darkest Before Dawn”
Year of publication: 2015
Author: Maya Banks
Genre: Romantic suspense
Series: The Kelly/KGI Series, #10
# of Pages: 378
Paper or plastic: Mass market paperback
How obtained: Free from a convention (either RT or Rust City)
Blurb from book: The enigmatic Hancock has been both opponent and ally to the KGI teams for as long as they’ve known him. Always working a deep game, Hancock’s true allegiance has never been apparent, but one thing is for certain—he never lets anything get in the way of duty.
     But now, his absolute belief in the primacy of his ultimate goal is challenged by a captive he’s been ordered to guard, no matter how much she suffers in her prison. She’s the only woman who’s ever managed to penetrate the rigid walls surrounding his icy heart, but will he allow his perplexing feelings for the beautiful victim to destroy a mission he’s spent years working to complete—or will he be forced to sacrifice her for “the greater good”?
My thoughts: It was a good story, although the pacing was a bit slower in parts than I normally like. This is also the first book I’ve read of Ms. Banks, so I wasn’t sure if I’d be confused, having started with book 10 of this series. Nope. Well, not until toward the end, when characters from other books came into play. Then it got a little confusing with all the people! But it’s not necessary to have read those other books to enjoy this one.

Anyone here watch “Midnight, Texas”? How about “Salvation”? I recorded both series and I’m still in the process of watching them. The first one I’m watching alone (one episode a day) and man, am I hooked! Can’t wait to read the book now (I have the first of the series I got free at a convention). The second one I’m watching with Hubby. And man, are we hooked! That is one suspenseful series. Twists and turns abound. Can’t wait to see how it ends. But don’t tell me! Oh wait, you can’t. Last episode airs tomorrow. J

Happy Reading!

Stacy

Monday, September 18, 2017

Busy Weekend!

How was your weekend?

Mine was pretty nice. I attended the Central Ohio Fiction Writers (RWA chapter) meeting on Saturday in Columbus. The two speakers were very informative and I left feeling a little smarter and more prepared for my next round of writing. That’s always good right? Next month (Oct 21) the chapter is having a writer workshop featuring Larry Brooks. If it weren't for the fact I'll be in California that weekend, I'd be going. I always enjoy learning more about the craft of writing.

If this is something you might be interested in, you can see all the details here: http://www.cofwevents.org/workshop. You don't have to be a member of COFW to attend (price is $55 for members and $75 for non members) and you don't have to write romance either.

I also finished fixing the edits on Ghostly Interlude on Saturday. Today I will read the book (or at least start reading—doubt I finish it in one day) and make sure my “fixes” didn’t break something else! That’s been known to happen.

Saturday night, I handed over Ghostly Liaison to Hubby (or I should say, his business, Enterprise Book Services) for formatting and I’ve chosen a Sep 27th release date for the paperback, meaning the e-book will be out before that. Yay! Can’t wait to get it back out there.

Other than that, I watched a lot of Football. Friday night the Wayne Warriors (HS) beat Miamsburg, 56-28 (it was tied 21-21 at the half). Always like seeing OSU and USC win on Saturday (I actually stayed up until 1am watching USC beat Texas in double overtime!). And we were able to enjoy watching the Steelers beat the Vikings on Sunday from the comfort of our family room. Only disappointing loss: the Rams. Guess it was too much to ask for a perfect football weekend, huh?

I finally got off my duff and went walking this morning. 3 miles. Not too shabby since my last actual walk was on 8/21. Hopefully I can keep it up. I need to get back into shape. It’s been too long since I’ve been to the fitness center.

So… Do you like walking? When’s the best time for you? I like the mornings best. Air seems cleaner then. Well… except when I run into the smell of skunk, which I did today. Turned around quickly then. Don’t want to find out if it’s dead or alive!

Happy Monday!!

Stacy

Friday, September 15, 2017

Why Oh Why Don’t I Write It Down?

When I hit PUBLISH on Wednesday’s post, I remembered there was something else I wanted to say. No biggie. Figured I’d save it for Friday. But did I write it down? Nope. Did I remember what it was? Nope.

I do this all the time. You’d think I’d learn by now.

Write the stupid stuff down!!!

Speaking of forgetting, I realized I never told you how the fan panel for The Vampire Diaries went at Dragon Con (Hmmm… could that be what I wanted to write about? Could be. Whew!). 12 people showed up (I counted). Of course, we were competing against Buffy, The Musical (among many other things). Something I would have attended if I wasn’t ON the panel. And I’ve seen the show before (funny stuff!). J

But I wasn’t near as nervous as I thought I would be. It would have been nicer if I had finished re-watching all 8 seasons before the con, but it was what it was. I actually had some stuff to say. And it was a nice discussion panel (between the audience and the panelists).

I did find it interesting that there were four of us on the panel and we were all authors (although I was the ONLY romance author). But only two of us wrote about vampires. I also found it interesting that one of the panelists didn’t even watch all of season 8 yet (short two or three episodes). Guess we spoiled it for her. Haha!

Will I get asked to return for another panel? Have no idea. I don’t know what their process is. But will I volunteer to be on another fan panel? Sure, as long as I see the request (a big IF) and there is something of interest to choose from. It was fun. And people actually took some of my swag. Win!

Oh hey! Before I forget (haha!), I got the new cover to Ghostly Liaison and thought I would share it here first.

E-book version

Print version
Didn’t Maria Zannini (of Book Cover Diva) do a great job? No help from me, that’s for sure. I need to learn to keep my suggestions to myself. J

I expect Ghostly Liaison will be back in the stores before the end of the month. Yay!

So… Do you find you forget things if you don’t write them down? Do you always remember to write them down, though? I’ve got pads of paper all over the house (and my purse), so there really is no excuse for me except…laziness! J

Happy Friday!

Stacy

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Wednesday Reads...Isn't

My reading has slowed down. Again. So I don’t have any book to report this week. Wish I could blame it on my writing, but I can’t.

Speaking of writing… For you writers out there, when you’re going over the book you got back from your editor, do you find yourself unable to go any farther when you reach a comment on a line or sentence that makes you wonder how to fix it? Apparently, I do.

Luckily, I have a daughter who can give me a second opinion, or at least some guidance. Unluckily, she’s not always available, so I have to wait for her response.

Thus, my editing has been a slooooow process.

You’d think with all that waiting I’d have more read. Uhhh… nope.

I’m such a slacker.

Happy Reading!

Stacy

Monday, September 11, 2017

Pictures from Dragon Con

Ahhh, lookee here. I remembered! Yay!! I'm gonna start with the good stuff--our photos WITH celebrities (the "our" being my daughter and me).

This is a picture of a picture, so quality sucks. But that's us with Nathan Fillion! He's so nice. And always introduces himself ("Hi, I'm Nathan") as if we didn't know! Got to shake his hand, too.


Another picture of a picture. Can you believe how tall Zachary Levi is? 6'3" (I had to look that up). By the way, he liked my shirt!!

My daughter told John Barrowman to do whatever. He needed more info and she couldn't be more specific, so this is what we ended up doing. He's so much fun!


Brett Dalton was my favorite star on the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D (and I told him, too!). I was heart broken when they made him a bad guy (which he had no prior knowledge would happen). I almost thought about doing the photo op with him, but taking a selfie was cheaper, and way more personal (got to interact with him longer). I may do this more (selfies) next year.


The next few photos were taken of people in cosplay that I really liked (and managed to be close enough to ask for a photo).

If you watched American Horror Story - Freak Show, then you know who this character is. I did watch the series and I thought this woman did a wonderful job in her costume!

My daughter took this photo. I think it's How to Train Your Dragon, but I just thought it was a neat costume.


Any NCIS fans here? People in line thought she was the real thing, but no, she wasn't Pauley Perrette. Pretty darn close, though. I got a "I Saw Abby" button after I snapped her photo.


The next photos are from the panels I attended. And I attended a lot of panels. Unfortunately, I wasn't always that close to take pictures and some of my pictures look more blurry as you enlarge them.

This is Jewel Staite (and the floating head of the moderator). Best shot I got of her, and it's kind of cool looking, too. If you don't know her, she played Kayley on Firefly/Serenity.

My seat, while closer than usual, was behind the microphones (or maybe cameras), so poor Lesley-Ann Brandt is kind of obliterated. That's Tricia Helfer beside her. They both star in Lucifer.

I went to two Nathan Fillion panels. This photo was from the Con Man panel. I never watched Con Man, but now I want to. I'm in luck, SyFy picked up the series. Now I just have to record them. :)

Casper Van Diem was with Nathan during the Con Man panel, running around getting questions. He's such a hoot! I want to watch the series even more, now.

No Dragon Con is complete without going to at least one Buffy panel. This one included Julie Benz (Darla), Charisma Carpenter (Cordelia), and Carla Kramer (Glory).

This is from the John Cusack panel. That's him on the right. With the hat. Which he never took off. Ned Bellamy is on the left. They're apparently very good friends. That guy in the middle was the moderator. Unfortunately, the panel kind of sucked. Not a lot of interaction with the audience. And the answers were dull and straight-forward. No embellishments! Guess they didn't realize we wanted STORIES! Oh well...

One of the best panels: John Barrowman. You just never know what this guy is gonna do. This time he came out in his Wonder Woman costume (told his assistants he wanted bling--they gave him bling. That costume shone!).
He even shook his booty for us! Oh, and in case you want to see that costume up close, just look at the next picture (which I got from his Facebook page).

 Snazzy, huh?


This is the panel for the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. I was early in line, got in the front row, but they made me sit along the wall! I was so mad. So it's really hard to tell that that's Mallory Jansen, Brett Dalton, and Elizabeth Henstridge, since they never looked my way.


Managed to get the same position in line for Zachary Levi as I did for the S.H.I.E.L.D. panel and landed way better seats (4th row center). Does this guy have long legs or what?

Mash up panel of Arrow and Legends of Tomorrow: Josh Segarra  (Arrow), Maisie Richardson-Sellers (LOT), John Barrowman (both shows-laughing at something), Kevin Alejandro (Arrow), and Neil McDonough (both shows).


Monday panels tend to have less fans attending (since a lot of people have left). But I still thought the celebrities would appear. This was from the Guests of Flash panel, but Katie Cassidy and John Wesley Shipp were no shows. Matt Letscher told us to remember who managed to make it to the panel. He made the panel fun all by himself, too.


Here's a photo of my lanyard. I got the dragon pins at Hard Rock (we get them every year, as they're dated). Of course, I included my own button, hoping people might ask me about it. Not yet, but maybe some day!

Would you believe that the Dayton Dragons actually won the first round of the Midwest League playoffs! Shocked us, too. Then they won the first game of the semi-finals in Ft .Wayne. Unfortunately, they lost last night at home (why can't we watch a winning game???), so tonight is the deciding game (at home). If they win, they're on to the finals. If they lose, it's bye-bye. Let's go Dragons!!!

Sunday football went well. Steelers squeaked by. Looks like Cleveland might actually have a team this year! And the Rams demolished the Colts (yay!!!!). I'm thinking the Rams might actually have a team this year, too. Haha!

Hope you enjoyed the pictures. Happy Monday!!

~~Stacy

Friday, September 8, 2017

Due To Technical Difficulties Beyond My Control

We lost our power at 9:30 last night (came back on at midnight, but I was in bed by then). Of course, if I had remembered I was going to post something (the disadvantage of taking a break, I guess--you forget you're blogging!), I would have had something ready long before then. But I like it when I can use excuses other than being lazy or forgetful, you know?

And, technically, there were OTHER reasons, too, but I can't get into them just yet.

So... No Dragon Con pictures today. But it's listed on my TO DO list (now), so there will be pictures on Monday.

I am working on the edits to Ghostly Interlude, and I have gotten the manuscripts ready for Ghostly LiaisonMy Sunny Vampire, and Bite Me, I'm Yours for re-release (so I'm not a TOTAL slacker). As soon as I get the covers to them I'll be back in business.

Because I really hate seeing that those books aren't for sale right now. **heavy sigh**

Wednesday we watched the Dayton Dragons play in the first playoff game of the Midwest League Series in I don't know HOW long (best of 3 in the first round). They lost that game and with the next two on the road, we didn't hold out much hope. But alas! They won last night so now there IS hope. I'd love to see them get into the second round.

Heck, I'd love to see them win the whole thing!

Tonight is football night (high school variety). And of course it won't be warm. Gotta make sure to take blankets! There's also football on Saturday (OSU) and Sunday (Steelers), but I can watch them from the comfort of my home (well, except for the Steelers--we'll have to go to B-dubs for that).

But what's with this weather??? I'm not ready for fall yet. Are you?

Happy Friday!

~~Stacy

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Wednesday Reads and I'm Back!

That’s right, I’m back. Dragon Con was great, I survived the panel I was on, and now life can go back to normal.

Does that mean my reading will pick up? Hmmm… I don’t know. I do know my writing will. I got the edits back on Ghostly Interlude, so I’ll be working on that this week. Surprisingly, my editor didn’t have a lot of issues with my story. Whew!

Here’s what I read the past week:

Book #49

Dates read: August 24-September 5
Title: “Tyranny”
Year of publication: 2016
Author: Gemma Brocato
Genre: Paranormal romance
Series: Goddesses of Delphi #1
# of Pages: 182
Paper or plastic: Nook book
How obtained: Purchased for free at B&N
Blurb from book: Immortal librarian Clio has existed for thousands of years. Her purpose—to influence and inspire mortals. Now as one has inspired her, a battle is mounting between the Muses and a god who care little for the plight of man. A hostile takeover is imminent at Olympus Enterprises.
    History professor Jax Callahan is battling his own uncertainties. His previous employer’s refusal to heed his warnings results in a tragic loss of life. Blaming himself, he no longer believes he can make a difference.
    Tyranny will stop at nothing to appease her father and succeed in taking over Olympus and the world. To save mankind, Clio must reveal herself as a Muse to Jax, the man she’s fallen in love with. Facing the end of humanity as they know it, she must convince him to trust in the magic of what if. Because failure spells doom for everyone.
My thoughts: I liked Clio and Jax, but there was a part of the storyline that really irked me. I’ll blame it on my lack of knowledge regarding Greek mythology. If you’re into that stuff, and love romance, the storyline probably won’t irk you. And this e-book is still free for Kindle (Amazon) and Nook (B&N), if that makes a difference.

I know it’s way after the eclipse, but I wanted to share the picture I took, right about the time it was covered the most.
You can see the moon shapes through the holes of the colandar! Pretty cool, huh?

I’ll share my Dragon Con pics on Friday.

So… Did you do anything fun over the weekend?

Happy Reading!

Stacy

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Wednesday Reads and Binge-Watching Update

Hey lookee! I finished a book. Here’s what I read the past week:

Book #48

Dates read: August 9-22
Title: “The Sumage Solution”
Year of publication: 2017
Author: G.L. Carriger
Genre: Paranormal (M/M) romance
Series: San Andreas Shifters #1
# of Pages: 305
Paper or plastic: Trade paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: Max fails everything – magic, relationships, life. So he works for DURPS (the DMV for supernatural creatures) as a sumage, cleaning up other mages’ messes. The job sucks and he’s in no mood to cope with redneck biker werewolves. Unfortunately, there’s something oddly appealing about the huge, muscled Beta visiting his office for processing.
    Bryan AKA Biff (yeah, he knows) is gay but he’s not out. There’s a good chance Max might be reason enough to leave the closet. If he can only get the man to go on a date. Everyone knows werewolves hate mages, but Bryan is determined to prove everyone wrong. Even the mage in question.
My thoughts: It was an interesting read, but not what I was expecting. I was also a bit confused with the world and felt it lacked explanation. At least it did for this old brain of mine.

The Vampire Diaries binge-watching update: I’m in the middle of season 4. In fact, I might finish that season today. Chug, chug, chugging along.

Happy Reading!

Stacy

Monday, August 21, 2017

Taking a Break

What with getting ready for Dragon Con (watching The Vampire Diaries), hosting Sizzle and Sass this week, and finishing my short story for my newsletter, I think it's in my best interest to take a blogging break.

Unless I finish reading the book I'm reading before Wednesday, in which case I'll post Wednesday Reads. Those are easy to write (and don't take all that much brain power).

Friday I leave for New Jersey so I can attend my family reunion on Saturday. Looking forward to that, although keeping up with the Sizzle and Sass page will be a little difficult. Must schedule some posts ahead of time (so glad I can do that!). 

Anyway, I'll be back. Just don't know when.

Eventually life will slow down. Right?

Happy Monday & Happy Eclipse Day!! Are you in the totality zone? I'm not. But I believe I will be in 2024. I should still be around then. :)


Stacy

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Wednesday Reads, Still Watching, and My Rights

Binge-watching can really be time-consuming. Second week into The Vampire Diaries and I started season 3 yesterday. Nothing much else is getting done and you know what? I’m okay with that. I’d like to think I’ll really be prepared for the fan panel at Dragon Con.

Or at least not look like an idiot sitting there.

I’ve forgotten how much I really loved that series, though. And vampire stories in general. I’ve seen scenes and wonder, “Did I get my idea from that?” It’s highly possible.

Anyway, I did finish a book! Here’s what I read the past week:

Book #47

Dates read: August 2-9
Title: “Pretty Girls”
Year of publication: 2015
Author: Karin Slaughter
Genre: Suspense/Thriller
Series: N/A
# of Pages: 573
Paper or plastic: Mass market paperback
How obtained: Free at RT17
Blurb from book: It’s been more than twenty years since Claire and Lydia last spoke. Claire is the glamorous trophy wife of an Atlanta millionaire. Lydia, a single mother dating an ex-con, struggles to make ends meet. But neither has recovered from the disappearance of their sister Julia two decades earlier—and the shocking murder of Clair’s husband brings the horror and heartbreak of the past roaring back into their lives.
    The vanishing of a teenage girl and the killing of a middle-aged man, almost a quarter-century apart: What could connect them? As they form a wary truce, the surviving sisters unearth the secrets that destroyed their family all those years ago…and find the astonishing truth where they least expect it.
My thoughts: Goodness. Karin Slaughter was at RT so I thought maybe this book would have some romantic elements to it. Nope. Not a bit. And you know what? It didn’t matter. I became riveted to the grisly story. And it is grisly.  

Good news! I got my rights back from Kensington for My Sunny Vampire; Bite Me, I’m Yours; and Ghostly Liaison. Those books are no longer for sale until I get them re-released. I’m getting the cover for Ghostly Liaison first, since I’d like the first book out when I release the second book. Then I’ll concentrate on getting my vampire books back out there.

It’s gonna be a lot of work after Dragon Con (because I’m sure I’ll be watching TVD until then) when I switch my attention over to getting them back into circulation. I just hope it doesn’t take long. I need to get back to writing eventually!

Happy Reading!

Stacy

Friday, August 11, 2017

Cover to Ghostly Interlude

It’s a blatant self-promotion post! Yay!

Can I call this a cover reveal if I’ve already revealed it to my newsletter subscribers?

Not that that many subscribers have SEEN the cover. They would have had to open the newsletter to do that.

So, whether or not this is a “reveal,” I am now sharing the cover to Ghostly Interlude.




Isn't it pretty? I don’t have a release date yet. I’m not comfortable setting that date until I get the book back from my editor. Once I get more comfortable that it’s close to being finished, I’ll put the book up for presale. I’ve never done that before, so it’ll be interesting to see if it does any good. It certainly can’t hurt. Right?

So, for some more blatant self-promo, here’s the blurb:

Maggie Russell—legal assistant by day, horror writer by night—gets the scare of her life when she wakes up in a strange café without any idea of how she got there. But if she tells anyone about her sleepwalking escapades, she could lose her grandmother’s house, and she’d fought so hard to keep it.

Dean Parker is a private investigator whose office is next door to Maggie’s law firm. He’s been eyeing the pretty brunette ever since she started working there, but getting involved with anyone isn’t in his game plan. When he finds out she’s been having sleeping problems, he suspects her money-grubbing cousin is involved. Instead, he discovers something worse: a ghost is living with Maggie and it appears another may be possessing her.

Dean is determined to help Maggie rid her home of the uninvited guests. He just never figured his attraction to her would be reciprocated. Keeping his distance is no longer an option, though. If he fails, Maggie could very well be possessed forever.

And if the blurb’s not enough, here’s the UNEDITED beginning of Ghostly Interlude:

Something poked Maggie in her shoulder and she swatted it away. Time to have a serious talk with her cousin about boundaries and if that didn’t work, she would finally install a lock on her bedroom door.

“Ma’am, wake up. You have to go.”

Ma’am? That didn’t sound like Erica because, well, Erica wasn’t a guy. So what was a guy doing in her bedroom? Maggie bolted upright and blinked as the bright room came into focus. Better question: Where was her bedroom?

Keep calm. Keep calm. You’ve just been sleep walking. Again.

The mantra did nothing to keep her heart from racing. Probably because every other time it had happened she’d woken up at home. Not at some strange café.

Dirty dishes littered the table before her. God. She was eating in her sleep now? Should she be thankful she wasn’t wearing her pajamas? She apparently had the sleep-sense to put on a sweater and jeans.

The person who’d poked her was actually a waiter, and a young one at that. He couldn’t be more than twenty. “Here’s the check. I have to close up.”

“What day is it?”

“It’s seven. We’re closing.”

She grabbed his arm. “Not time. Day. Day!”

His eyes widened and he shrugged free. “Sunday?”

“Sunday?” No. No-no-no. That couldn’t be. She’d lost two days. Two freakin’ days! Who slept-walked for two days?


So… if you made it this far, how did you like the cover? How about the excerpt? Intriguing enough to read more? I sure hope so!

Happy Friday!

Stacy

 

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

No Wednesday Reads Because...

I’m reading a really good book, but it’s long (573 pages) and I’m now spending my days binge-watching The Vampire Diaries, so it’ll be awhile before I finish the book.

And I’m certainly not getting any writing done. Priorities!

But I’m amazed at how much I remember of the first season of TVD. So much so, that I thought some of the characters showed up in later seasons. Wrong! Maybe my memory isn’t as bad as I thought.

I’m having fun watching the episodes again. Especially now that I don’t have to zip through commercials. I swear, The CW shows more commercials than any other network. Each episode of TVD is 40 minutes long. That’s 20 minutes of commercials when it airs. This is why I record all shows.

Well… except for sports. I do watch those live.

Recently, Spectrum changed our “bundle” package by taking out all the movie channels and charging us separately. I don’t know what kind of “bundle” that left us, except phone and internet. But I wasn’t about to pay $59 for channels we rarely watch, so I called and cancelled that portion. I’d probably quit cable altogether, but we like our sports and face it, TV is easier to record and watch than downloading from some internet site (especially when our internet is wonky at times).

So… How often do you read really long books? Do you like them long? I prefer long to short, but sometimes those thick ones will cause me to hesitate picking it up. I like time to read those books (because they tend to be complicated reads due to many story lines) and if I see I won’t have time, then I’ll find something shorter. But in this case, I guess I forgot I wanted to watch TVD (and have little time to get the series watched). Ooops.

Happy Reading!

Stacy

Monday, August 7, 2017

Getting Sick at a Con and some GREAT News

Wouldn’t you believe it? I’m not at Rust City Book Con for one day and I come down with another cold. I can’t even blame this on con crud because I might have left the house with this cold. I had thought it was just my allergies being my allergies ignoring my pills.

Because my allergies tend to do that.

But no. As I drove closer to Detroit, the scratchier my throat became. Not a good sign. Luckily, the scratch went away. Not so lucky, the running nose and coughing took over. Finding cold medicine became a trick, since I didn’t want to drive in that crazy town (traffic was unreal) and there wasn’t ANY store within walking distance (I tried). I discovered the hotel sold Nyquil pills. $5 for 4 pills. Expensive, but Yay! I’d been sure I was saved.

I wasn’t. Those pills didn’t help all that much. Oh, they dried me up all right, to the point of clogging my nose. I couldn’t breathe! I don’t care what anyone says, the liquid stuff is better (I came home and took some Nyquil and it worked wonderfully).

Even though I became sick (I’m sooooo glad I packed lots of Kleenex packs—sure came in handy), I tried not to let it get to me too much. I did have a good time (and my friend liked it so much she wants to go back next year). Actually sold two books (which is two more than last year).

I still wish more people would have attended the book signing (which was open to the public). That’s something Jackie will have to work on.

Other than that, Jackie did and OUTSTANDING job of running this convention. I’ve never seen anyone work so hard just to make sure everyone had a good time.

And if it weren’t for my cold, I might have been able to enjoy more than I did.

Here’s my GREAT news: Hubby’s PET scan came back clean. No cancer! Of course, that’s what last year’s PET scan showed, so to be safe, he’ll have another PET scan in six months. Hubby is doing great though. He’s gained back some of the weight he lost, but is hoping he can stay at the weight he’s at now. He doesn’t want to gain it ALL back. So he’s back to walking after work (he’s up to 8 miles, but says he’ll stick with that number for awhile—before he walked 10 miles a day). I doubt I’ll ever walk that much. I’m lucky to get in 4 miles and my pace has really slowed down. Can’t blame that on my heart, though. Nope. It’s all due to my stupid arthritic knee.

Getting old sucks.

So…  Why do we get sick at the most inopportune times? Is there ever an opportune time? Hmmm…

Happy Monday!

Stacy

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Wednesday Reads

Here’s what I read the past week:

Book #46

Dates read: July 25-31
Title: “Wolf Tales 12”
Year of publication: 2011
Author: Kate Douglas
Genre: Erotica
Series: Wolf Tales #12
# of Pages: 366
Paper or plastic: Trade Paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: Gifted with exceptional strength and extraordinary sensuality, the shape-shifting Chanku have learned to survive on their own, far away from their one time home in the mountains of Montana. But as the years pass, the packs begin to long for one another, for the incredible passion they enjoy together and for the erotic pleasure they find only with their own kind…
    It is then they hear Anton’s call. He has learned even more about the fascinating past of the Chanku. And the young girl, Lily, has made the most astonishing discover of all…
    The time has come for all Chanku to come together as one, to reclaim their primal past and to enter an amazing future that no one ever dreamed. Their epic journey is over, and least for now…
My thoughts: I wasn’t all that impressed with the last few books in this series, so I hesitated to read this. But I did and glad I had. Lots of stuff is packed into this (with lots of sex, can’t forget that!), making it longer than the others in this series. But it is a nice ending and I enjoyed the story.

I still have to pack my clothes, but I think I’m ready for the Rust City Book Con. When I get back from that on Sunday, then I have to start thinking about Dragon Con. I need to start binge-watching The Vampire Diaries (since I’m on the fan panel), and take lots of notes. Must remember to take notes! I can’t afford to procrastinate there. The Vampire Diaries lasted for 8 seasons! I still need season 8, but I’m not even sure I’ll get through seven seasons before the end of the month. It’ll be fun trying, though. J

So… How do you decide which book to read next? Do you look at your stack and see which one grabs you? Or do you have a specific list you’re whittling down? Me, I tend to look at my stack. Unfortunately the books on top get my attention first and I always put the newest purchase on top. Hmmm… Maybe I need to change my strategy there.

Happy Reading!

Stacy