Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Wedneday Reads and Busy, Busy!

Don’t die of shock, now. I’m actually posting a book!

Here’s what I finished reading this week:

Book #2

Dates read: January 17-29
Title: “Crimson Death”
Year of publication: 2016
Author: Laurell K. Hamilton
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Series: Anita Blake Vampire Hunter #25
# of Pages: 710
Paper or plastic: Mass market paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: While on a job that takes her to Ireland, vampire hunter and necromancer Anita Blake learns that evil is in the eye of the beholder.
My thoughts: Did this novel need to be 710 pages long? Nope. Not even close. There was quite a bit of repetition, some rambling (it is told in Anita’s POV—first person) and descriptions as if I’d never picked up the other 24 books in the series. I expect the rambling and the overly long descriptions, but not the repetition. And for that I’m dinging her a bit. I still enjoyed the story, and the roundabout way she always gets to the end, and I will continue to read this series. But they aren’t the “drop everything and read it” kind of books anymore.

I was busy yesterday uploading Ghostly Interlude for pre-order. Then I created my newsletter so it could go out this morning with the buy links (talk about cutting it close!). I’m too tired to post the links here, though. Gotta save something for Friday, right? Right. Ahh.. but at least I got some writing done. Not much new stuff, but it’s a start after not opening that WIP for 10 days. Let’s see if I can create a streak of days working on it now.

So… How long do you stick with a series? Until the end or until it drives you nuts? I’ve been known to do both. Most of the times I like the series so much I’m sad when they’re over. I don’t know if I’ll be sad when the Anita Blake series ends (if it ever does), but I’m pretty sure I’ll stick with it until it does.

Happy Reading!


Monday, January 29, 2018

One Down, One to Go!

One down: I finally, FINALLY, released my box set of Books 1-3 of the Bitten by Love series. Now I just have to wait for it to appear in the stores (which means, I don’t have any buy links yet). But whew, glad that’s over with.

One to go: I also finally, FINALLY, have Ghostly Interlude ready to go. Just have to look over the formatting (because yes, it’s actually formatted!). And I have selected a release date: February 27. Don’t know how much I’ll get done between then and now, but hey, I’ll give it a go. I’ve never done pre-orders before. I can’t imagine it’d be any worse than if I just published it right away. We’ll see…

So I expect I’ll have BUY LINKS for both books by Wednesday. Which is good. I’ve got a newsletter to write and send out this month!

Aaack! I guess I better get crackin’!

I did pretty good with the Sizzle & Sass Facebook page last week. All the data (reach, interaction) was up quite a bit from the previous week. Although at times it didn’t feel like I was doing anything worthwhile. When no one comments (and after asking questions, too), it can get a person down. But I did my best. That’s all I can do, right?

So… Did you watch the Grammy’s last night? They don’t announce all that many awards anymore, huh? But they still give out a lot. Have to say, I listen to the radio (mostly alternate rock), but didn’t know a lot of the singers on stage. Then again, I don’t listen to the R&B station. That might be why. Oh, but I do like Bruno Mars and happy he won a few of the awards.

Happy Monday!


Wednesday, January 24, 2018

No Wednesday Reads and Vertigo is a Bitch

When you read a 700-page book and are lucky to get 300 pages read in a week, don’t expect to get it finished in a week! Good news, I’m past page 350. Bad news, I have nothing to report this week, because…700 pages!

At least they’re a GOOD 700 pages. So far, anyway. Although, I don’t know if I’d have read this far if they weren’t.

I’m also behind in the final reading of Ghostly Interlude. Well, not the final-final reading. I’m sure I’ll have another one once it’s formatted. This is the final reading before it gets to the formatter. It might not have helped that I came down with a roaring case of vertigo on Monday night.

Wish I knew where THAT came from. Needless to say, Tuesday was a little…tough. I was basically afraid to move my head. I did get some reading done on Ghostly Interlude, but not near as much as I wanted. Because when the world around you spins, you just want it to stop spinning.

I do have a wellness doctor appointment coming up next week, so I’ll make sure to mention it. Hopefully it’ll just be that one time. I don’t want to go through that again. Vertigo is a bitch!

I think our internet woes are finally fixed. Third time might have actually been a charm. But I’ll hold off on the celebration until at least a week has gone by.

Hey, but we did get some good news through all the visits from Spectrum. Seems we can take our current plan with us to the new house. Spectrum doesn’t actually sell the Signature Home that Time Warner sold us, but will continue to support it since we’re grandfathered in. I was afraid we’d have to change when we moved. Glad to know we don’t have to if we don’t want to.

And even better, the last tech that came by noticed Hubby’s dismantled fish tanks. Hubby told him he could have them if he wanted (for free—he doesn’t want them and we weren’t going to take them to the new house). The kid (yes, he was younger than my kids) was thrilled. So are we. Means we don’t have to haul them out to the trash!

So… Have you ever had vertigo? I had it once before, many years ago (when I was working as a cost accountant). Doctor told me it wasn’t anything serious, so that’s what I’m going with this time. Except this time was way worse than last. I swear, I thought someone had slipped me a micky during dinner. Made me nauseous. And I hate feeling sick like that. Blech.

Happy Reading!


Monday, January 22, 2018

Well, That Was Awful

Neither football team I rooted for yesterday won. Ugh. And I bet that when the Eagles play the horrible patriots in the SuperBowl, they’ll get skunked. Because that’s how it always seems to go. I have hopes someone, ANYONE will beat those horrible patriots and they never do.

I posted on Facebook and will repeat here: I don’t think I’ve hated the Cowboys as much as I hate the patriots.

And I really, really hate the Cowboys.

And yes, I’m intentionally not capitalizing the team name. That shows you how much MORE I hate them.

I suppose that’s how some people feel about the Penguins, although I don’t think the Penguins have ever been caught cheating. And maybe the patriots didn’t cheat THIS year, but they have before, so I’ll never EVER like them. Never. Ever.

As if the football games didn’t make yesterday crappy enough, I remembered (too late!) that I started hosting duties for the Sizzle and Sass page (Facebook). Oops! But when I went to post on my PC, I discovered I couldn’t. I could do it from my phone, but it’s kind of hard to post the pictures I have on my laptop from my phone. Plus, I type better on my laptop than I do on the phone (why can’t Apple have a BACK SPACE key anywhere??).

I tried everything, checked everything, and I couldn’t figure out what was wrong. I finally contacted Facebook (with a screen shot, even).

And while I was going through all that, we were constantly losing the internet (an issue we’ve been experiencing lately). Last weekend Spectrum came out to check our router and we were told the signal was too high, causing it to short out. They supposedly fixed that problem and left the router alone.

When the internet/wifi went out yesterday (after having gone out a few times on Friday), Hubby called them again. They sent someone out again. Seems the router was going bad (no, really?). Technician replaced it, and after Hubby got the wifi up and running, guess what? I could post to the Sizzle and Sass page.

I can’t imagine our router was the cause, and I’ve never known Facebook to react so quickly, but hey, whatever. I almost thought I wasn’t going to be able to host this week.

I certainly hope the week goes better than yesterday did. I don’t like feeling grumpy!

So… What sports team (any sport) do you hate the most? Or are you the type of sports fan that just likes watching the game with no emotion whatsoever? I can’t imagine ever doing that. Why watch if you’re not going to get emotional?

Happy Monday!


Friday, January 19, 2018

Ghostly Interlude Video

I took a class on using Canva after learning about making videos on and bam! Figured out how to get my cover on the video.

So… I edited the original. Not too bad. Then I created one for Ghostly Interlude.

I had some issues with that video, though. Frankly, it was too long. I used the blurb as is and realized that just wasn’t cutting it. It took my feeble brain to figure out that the blurb used for the My Sunny Vampire video is only the middle section, not the whole dang thing. D’oh! So I tightened it up and this is what I came up with. What do you think?

Hey, am I getting to be a pro at this stuff or what?

If it’s the “or what,” I don’t think I want to know.

Ghostly Interlude is SUPER close to being released, though. I’ve printed it out and will read it aloud before giving it to Hubby to format. Which means, I need to come up with an actual release DATE (with Hubby’s suggestion) so I can get pre-orders out there.

So... Any plans for the weekend? Hubby and I are attending a travel something-or-other that AAA is holding in Columbus. We’re going with our Columbus friends, then going out to dinner after. Should be fun. And wet. Yep, supposed to rain. On top of all this snow. I foresee a mess ahead.

Happy Friday!


Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Wednesday Reads

I was determined to have a book to post today, even if that meant I wasn’t writing. Here’s what I finished reading this week:

Book #1

Dates read: January 2-16
Title: “Illumination”
Year of publication: 2017
Author: Susannah Sandlin
Genre: Paranormal romance
Series: Penton Legacy #5
# of Pages: 356
Paper or plastic: Trade paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: He came to Penton seeking peace. Nik Dimitrou joined the Army to escape his family curse, only to have his psychic abilities exploited as a weapon. Now, as a civilian, he turns to the bottle to veil the images that come unbidden whenever he touches anyone—except vampires. With them, he has finally found a respite. But as Penton moves into open warfare with the Vampire Tribunal, Nik finds himself deep inside the conflict, not to mention fighting a transformation in his own body more frightening than anything he’s faced
    She wanted to change the world. Shay Underwood watched her Peace Corps parent move from one third world country to another, helping others—until both died following an outbreak of Dengue fever. Driven to pursue a career in tropical medicine, Shay works in New Orleans to cure the disease that killed her parents—until a careless weekend outing draws her into a world far more dangerous than the diseases she studies: a desperate vampire society engaged in human trafficking.
    Two cities, two strangers, one world. With Penton rebellion leader Aidan Murphy making risky choices and chief lieutenant Mirren Kincaid forced to take a leadership role for which he is unsuited, it will fall to two outsiders, Nik and Shay, to find a way for Penton—and themselves—to survive in this much-anticipated conclusion to the award-winning Penton Legacy series.
My thoughts: I waited awhile for this book to be written and released (I read #4 nearly 3 years ago!) and it was worth the wait. A little less romance in this one than the others, but since it was wrapping up a rather complex storyline, all is forgiven. I wouldn’t have minded a longer story, but only because I enjoy reading about the characters and longer books don’t always scare me. At least not in series I enjoy. If you’re looking for a vampire romance series, this one is only 5 books long and very enjoyable.

So, yeah, writing has been going slow. You’d think with the cold and snow I wouldn’t have a problem (’cause I’m certainly not GOING anywhere!). Sometimes I really need to stay away from the Internet. That thing can be evil. Don’t you agree? Oh wait, don't answer that. You're here, reading me! Stay!!!

Happy Reading!


Monday, January 15, 2018

First off, I have to say… Damn, Steelers! Of course, I always thought they’d been super lucky with some of their wins. Guess their luck finally ran out. Looks like it’ll be another year I won’t care about the Super Bowl. Boo.

Now on to

A friend from my RWA chapter recommended this site to make videos. And it’s free (as long as you don’t mind it's not HD and that their name & logo shows at the end, and I don’t). You can base it on a blog post (or other URL) or add your own verbiage/blurb/whatnot. So I thought I’d play around with it. Here’s the video I came up with based on the blurb to My Sunny Vampire:

Hopefully it plays (I wasn't able to verify that in preview mode). I thought it turned out pretty neat, even though I don’t show my cover or website (I could have uploaded a picture I created showing my cover (from someplace like Canva), but I didn’t realize that until after I made this). I can easily see myself getting lost in making videos. Like I need another distraction. But it’s something to check out if you’re looking for a free, simple video.

I mean, it must be simple. I was able to figure it out! Haha!

So… Is your team still in the playoffs, or have you turned to hockey (or basketball, I guess that’s going on, too) now? And what do you think of Lumen5? Does it look like something you might play around with?

Happy Monday!


Friday, January 12, 2018

I'm Done, I'm Done, I'm Done!!!

Yesterday was my last radiation treatment! Whoo hoo!

Of course, I can expect the redness and swelling to continue for another two weeks. Not that it’s been all that red or swollen now. Even the techs said my skin handled the treatments pretty well.

Hmmm… Does that mean I have thick skin? Maybe being a writer helped!!

Next step in my treatment will be hormone therapy. I got my pills yesterday, but can wait two weeks before starting them.

Not that I’m looking forward to it. The side effects scare me. But I promised I would try them. I can only hope that I handle the pills as well as the radiation.

So… Are you in the path of winter storm Hunter? We are. The snow doesn’t bother me as much as the expected ice. Hubby is working from home today (and told his crew to do the same). No one needs to be driving in the ice. And thank goodness I don’t have to drive ANYWHERE!!

That’s because I’m done, I’m done, I’m done!!!

Happy Friday!


Wednesday, January 10, 2018

No Wednesday Reads

See? Already behind in my reading. I’m such a slacker.

Well… actually I’m not. I’m still reviewing my box set (that’s reading!!) and a good thing, too. Some stuff wasn’t formatted quite right. But it’s getting fixed and I’m on the home stretch (and enjoying reading Blind Temptation again, too!).

I also thought I’d get a chance to read more in the waiting room before my radiation treatments, but I barely get two pages read before they call me. Guess no one was scheduled before me for most days, because I show up early!

Tomorrow is my last day of treatment, so maybe I’ll head back to the fitness center in the mornings and get some reading done while walking on the treadmill.

Except my car is now parked outside.

And it’s been FREEZING out there.

It takes awhile to warm it up.

Which wastes gas!

Okay, maybe I won’t go in the morning. I’ll go in the afternoon.

Now I’m laughing. If I don’t do it in the morning, I don’t do it. Hmmm… Maybe I can change.

Yep. Still laughing.

Happy Reading!


Monday, January 8, 2018

We Bought a House!

Okay, actually we signed a contract to have one built. In June or July we’ll actually do the buying/closing. But we did it.

Yeah, that means we’ll be back to having house payments for awhile (since this smaller home costs more than our larger home will sell for), but it’s the right move for us. I look forward to moving day and living in a ranch house once again.

We’ll be closing right around the time we get ready to leave on our trip/cruise to Alaska. So either right before we leave or right after we get back, we’ll get the keys to our new home. Which means we’ll probably wait to move in until after our trip. Good thing we aren’t in any hurry.

I’ll take pictures of the process of it being built (which won’t start until April). But if you’re curious about the home we got, here’s a link to the home on the builder site:

Did any of you watch any sports this weekend? I was disappointed the Rams didn’t win, but still, their season this year was way better than last. Hopefully they get farther next year.

I got lucky on Friday night and was able to watch the Penguins beat the Flyers. Hubby and I had dinner at Buffalo Wild Wings and it shocked me that they were showing the game on the big screen. Hubby was okay with me staying to watch the whole game. And then last night the Penguins were on NBCSN and I got to watch them win another game, this time against Boston (sorry, Jeff!). Daughter and I were happy dancing.

So, even though my Rams didn’t do so well, at least the Penguins did.

Next weekend I get to root for the Steelers. They better not fail us!!!

Today I get radiation treatment #12 of 15 (last day is Thursday!!). I’ll be so glad when that’s all over with (and yes, I’m feeling fine). On Wednesday I find out what kind of hormone treatment I’ll be taking. And in February I’ll get another mammogram to make sure everything is hunky-dory. Keeping my fingers crossed!

So… How was your weekend? Do anything interesting?

Happy Monday!



Friday, January 5, 2018

I Got Side Tracked

My goal of adding to my WIP every weekday has gotten a little side-tracked. All because I wanted to look at some condos in Beavercreek last Saturday.

We drove through the community (which has six units left to sell) and liked what we saw. So we planned on talking to them on Wednesday.

Figured Beavercreek would be a nice place to live. It’s closer to my son and the same distance from our daughter. Plus…condo!

But then I did some research and saw how much they cost. Way out of our price range. And the homeowner’s fee was outrageous. Heck, we could pay someone to work on our yard for less than that. Heck, we already do! So I started wondering if buying a ranch house would be better.

And this is where I got in trouble. I love researching.

I discovered that the housing development 4 miles to the north of us has ranch homes within our price range. I’d completely forgotten about them, too! So I went up there on Tuesday and got prices and brochures. One of the houses had a three-car garage! But it was a smaller (much smaller than our) home. We spent that night (up until one am!) looking at all the options and back up plans, because you see, there weren’t but two lots that could take the ranch house we wanted.

Why is it when you think you have plenty of time, you don’t?

So on Wednesday, instead of seeing the condo place, we saw the home place. That three-car garage is gone (unfortunately), but out back-up plan was still good (and frankly, we were hooked). If a realtor gives us a number we can live with selling our current home, then it looks like we’ll be moving this summer into a new ranch.

Yeah, we could probably wait, but actually, this is the best time for us. Hubby has no intention of retiring soon, and our current home is paid for so no need to rush into moving into the new one (we can then figure out what we really want to keep and what can go). Downsizing will be difficult, but I can live with that if it means I’m getting a brand new ranch with a small yard.

I’ll keep you posted on what we decide.

So… when was the last time you moved? Are you itching to do it again or happy where you’re at? It’s been twenty-one years for us. I think this is the longest either one of us has lived in the same house. Ever! The next one will be our last, though. I don’t want to think about moving again. But I’ll be really glad to get rid of the stairs—no more basement and the upstairs is a bonus bedroom only. I don’t need to be up there if I don’t want to.

Happy Friday! Hope you're not freezing.


Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Wednesday Reads and Setting Goals

Last year I set a goal to read 65 books. I did manage to reach that (and then some), but it took some real work on my part toward the end (and cheating by reading some novellas). This year I need to set a more relaxed goal, so I decided on 50. About 1 a week. And after stating that, I’m wondering if 50 will be too much. Oh, but I do have a couple of trips on the horizon for 2018, so yeah, it’s probably more than doable. I do enjoy reading in the car.

Here’s what I read this week:

Book #67

Dates read: December 19-28
Title: “Midnight Crossroad”
Year of publication: 2014
Author: Charlaine Harris
Genre: Urban fantasy
Series: Midnight, Texas #1
# of Pages: 349
Paper or plastic: Mass market paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: Welcome to Midnight, Texas, a town with many boarded-up windows and few full-time inhabitants, located at the crossing of Witch Light Road and the Davy highway. It’s a pretty standard dried-up western town.
    There’s a pawnshop with three residents. One is seen only at night. There’s a diner, but people stopping there tend not to linger. There’s a newcomer, Manfred Bernardo, who just wants to work hard and blend in. But Manfred has secrets of his own…
My thoughts: I expected a bit more paranormal/supernatural stuff because of the TV series (which I watched first). Then again, maybe the first season encompassed the other books in the series. Won’t know until I read those. And yes, I do plan to read them. Someday. It was an interesting story with some interesting characters.

As for my writing goal this year… I’m going to do my best to add to my WIP every weekday (which I already broke, darn it!). A word count of 500+ would be awesome, but I’m not going to press my luck. If I can add words to my WIP every weekday, then I will already surpass any goal I’ve set before. It’d be great if I could write on the weekends or holidays, but for some reason I just can’t get into the writing mood then. I save that time for newsletters and blogs, which I don’t seem to have a problem writing those then. Well… most times. Because sometimes something comes up (like it did yesterday) and blows everything out of the water—but more on that on Friday (gotta save something for then!).

So… Can you read in a moving vehicle? I used to be unable to do anything but look out the window. Even reading a map would make me sick. As an experiment, I tried crocheting during a road trip (because I could look up every now and then). When I didn’t get sick doing that, I braved reading on a bus once (where I couldn’t see outside anyway). That successful trip made me try reading in a car and I happily found I could do it without being ill. What a difference that makes in traveling, too (especially if you’re sitting in the back seat). The miles fly by (and I get a lot of reading done!).

Happy Reading!