A post about Love

Let me start by saying, please no sympathy, no internet hugs or pity. I don’t want it and neither would he.

For the last few days, I’ve been in the process of losing someone I love. He has been unplugged and we’re literally in the process of waiting for the body to quit fighting.

There wasn’t a car accident. He’s not old. He’s not the healthiest guy in the room, but he didn’t have a terminal illness either. His brain just decided to bleed. And the blood thinners he took for his heart made the situation critical and now…he’s not in there anymore.

It’s times like these that we re-evaluate ourselves, our relationships, and what truly matters. I woke thinking about non-romantic love. I absolutely loved this man. We are cousins and while I’m not exactly close with the majority of my family, I always had a sort of hero-worship with this man. I never had an inappropriate Jerry Lee Lewis kind of feelings for him, but it wouldn’t have mattered if I did, because he was gay anyway.

Discovering you were gay in the 80s was not a pleasant thing. He moved to the other end of the US to a more friendly (for him) place for many years. It killed me. My mom would let me call him once in a while and when he was home for a visit, I wouldn’t let up until I got to see him. As an adult, I drove my kids to Disney and we stayed with him. My kids fell in love with him immediately and when he moved back to Indiana, I was elated.

I was also the only member of my ENORMOUS family to take him to a gay bar, but that’s a story for another time.

Then I discovered he moved back out of necessity and it just broke my heart.

But I sit here thinking about what it was that made me adore him so very much. Why the hero-worship? Why the need to have a close relationship with a cousin when I keep my extended family at arm’s length?

When I was young, before he decided to move and come out to the family, he had the most beautiful girlfriends.  Model quality looks. When my parents told me he was gay, I wasn’t surprised. I think I was like 9 or 10 years old at the time, but I called down to Florida and told him I didn’t care. I also cussed to the first family member for the first time when I told him not to give a shit what some of the family had to say. I loved him and asked if he had a boyfriend. He cried and handed the phone to his boyfriend. Said boyfriend and I had an awkward 30 second exchange.

He had been my babysitter and even chose to hang out with me and take me on his paper route when I didn’t need a sitter. He played the Led Zeppelin album backward to see if it would scare me. I think he was disappointed when I asked him to do the same with Dad’s Sabbath Bloody Sabbath album.

He loved animals, dogs specifically, and has a rescued German Shepherd who, in return, tried to save his life. She’s not taking this well either.

He was a great cook, though you’d better like spice and heat.

When I divorced the lawyer, I received a home that was about to be condemned as part of my settlement. I had to gut the place by myself. He came to my rescue, working through the pain of a badly needed hip replacement to give me and my children a nice home. He received a brown recluse bite for his troubles.

Last year, when my husband got laid off, he sent two bags of groceries over with my mother with strict instructs for us not to know who it came from. (Mother doesn’t take instruction well.)

He and my second husband hit it off and he’s remained my husband’s favorite family member outside of my parents. We’ve tried to spend time with him over the last few years, but due to the pain he’s been in from bad hips and a bad back, the pain meds and his affinity for Carona have kind of kept the visits to a minimum. So I’ve been missing him before all of this happened.

This man had been mistreated by the world. So-called friends had robbed him blind over and over again. His body caused him horrible pain, pain most of us have never felt. But he gave…constantly. Was he flawed? Who the fuck isn’t? But above all else, he loved others more than he cared for himself. He gave more than he ever took. How could I not love this man?

And how do I put a man like him in a novel and make it believable? It wouldn’t work. No one is this selfless. Well, not anymore. The world just lost the most self-less man I know.

RIP Ron. See you on the flipside.

Saving the Hero – Interview with Sabrina Sumsion

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Welcome, tell the readers a little bit about yourself.

A: I’m a ninja disguised as a homeschooling mom, former literary publicist, craft-aholic and all around reading diva.  Really, I kick down doors –no, wait, that was my husband when I locked us out of the house . . . Well, I engage in combat on a regular basis –online when I play MMORPGs with my children . . . OK, maybe I’m not a real ninja but my husband says I stole his heart.  Does that count?

No? Shoot. Well, I love reading and I love writing.  I think imagination is the biggest advantage a child can get in life and I try to allow my children many opportunities to expand theirs every day.

I love teaching authors how to avoid publishing traps and scams as well as how to market themselves and their works.  There is nothing better in life than giving someone information that helps them become successful. I get a high off speaking to large groups of people –especially when I see the ah-ha moment in their face.

I also take a few hours each week and create jewelry, make lotions or paint something.  I have little creation stations scattered through the house.  My daughter gets into it a lot and scatters things which drives my husband crazy but remember how I mentioned that he says I stole his heart?  Yeah.  I’m not giving it back.  He’s stuck with me forever.  Bwah ha ha ha!

What do you do when you aren’t writing?

A: When I’m not writing, I’m teaching my children or reading. Sometimes cooking or baking. I also like to make little craft projects. People ask me how I find time for everything, but a big factor is we don’t have cable so I don’t feel like I have to watch a lot of TV to justify the expense. That frees up so much more time. There’s also the small issue of ADD or something similar. I don’t see it, but my husband thinks I should finish putting up shelves before I tear down a new wall. I think he’s a bit extreme. Finish a project before you start a new one? That’s just crazy talk, but maybe it’s me.

If you had to choose a favorite book, what would it be? 

A: This question I put up there with “what’s your favorite ice cream”. How do you choose? It is creamy, sugary and there’s so many different combinations of flavors there’s no way to have a set favorite. There’s a different flavor for each situation for why you buy the ice cream. With books, I get sucked into so many different worlds and minds and each one has a place. For example, when I worked in Human Resources, I was a Dilbert junkie. I kept searching the offices looking for Scott Adams because surely he must have been hiding out in our company taking notes. Back when I was 10 (we won’t discuss how long ago that was), I had read almost all the books in our house and I decided that I would take on The Lord of the Rings. That was my gateway drug into fantasy and science fiction. It will always hold a special place in my heart. I went through a Dragon Lance phase and read everything by Tracey Hickman and Margaret Weiss. Now, I eagerly anticipate anything Brandon Sanderson releases while systematically devouring (literarily) our local library’s cozy mystery section.

What inspired you to start writing?

A: I didn’t intend to be an author. I was very happy as a reader until I had the opportunity to work as a literary publicist. While helping authors get on television, radio and newspaper coverage, I came across many authors who were scammed out of thousands of dollars by predatory publishing companies. It saddened me to hear about thousands of dollars in debt and even people losing their homes! I began my first book, Produce, Publish, Publicize as a white paper to help aspiring authors avoid traps in the publishing industry. It evolved into a book which I sold at events where I spoke about marketing, branding, publicity and other topics. Then, people started talking about the new fangled digital publishing platform on Amazon. I put Produce, Publish, Publicize on there to see what would happen. I wanted to play with the tools more, so I wrote the first Aliens Are Real book as another product to play with. Unexpectedly, I enjoyed the process. A lot. Then people started asking where the next book in that series was. Now I’m completely hooked on writing.

Do you have a set writing schedule, or do you do it when the fancy strikes? 

A: The goal is to write every morning for an hour before the kids wake up. That’s getting harder now that I’m pregnant, but that’s what I work for every day. There are some times that a scene will click in my head and I have to write it immediately and that is sometimes in the middle of the day. Thank goodness for amazing kids and a very tolerant husband!

Do you outline or write as you go (describe your writing process)? 

A: I’m an outlining seat of the pants-er. Tee hee hee. My process is I get an idea and let it mull over for a while. It’s usually the climax scene that pops into my head in vivid detail. Then I play the game of figuring out what needs to happen to get my characters there. Along the way, scenes will pop in my head. I’ll get those down on paper then figure out the organization later. It’s like a big jig saw puzzle for me. I get all the parts and piece them together. Along the way, the characters will tell me some of the pieces are wrong and then I have to go back and fix things. One of the best things I’ve started doing is grabbing note cards and write down the scenes as they come. I then go back and figure out a semblance of order and that helps me stay on track. Another amazing tool is the program Scriviner. I can add all my scenes and drag them into the correct order easily.

Do you have a certain vice that helps you write?  

A: No vices per se, but I find I writer better with instrumental music in the background. Most of Saving the Hero was written while listening to Capo Productions’ You Tube play lists.

Describe your muse.

A: My muse is life. Produce, Publish, Publicize was inspired by the people with whom I communicated. Aliens Are Real was inspired by a dream. Saving the Hero was inspired by reading a study on parasites. I have the concept for a mystery series inspired by a woman for whom I care take.

Are the people in your life supportive of your writing? 

A: I am blessed to have many people that support my writing. My husband is extremely tolerant of my quirks and taking off to do presentation and book events. My mother is also an author so we talk shop all the time as well as beta read for each other. I have a writers group where we have forged not only professional relationships, but also friendships. I adore them and couldn’t do this without everyone in my life.

Tell us about your current work in progress.

A: I just launched Saving the Hero which is about a vampire hunter trying to find a person who can resist the parasite that causes vampirism. The constant call from those who have read it is for the sequel. I have about 5,000 words on the sequel and most of the outline completed. However, I put Aliens Are Real: Part 4 on pause while I finished Saving the Hero. That’s around 18,000 words complete and I need to finish that before I finish Saving the Hero 2. I’ll get there… eventually.

If you could have one super power, what would it be and why

A: I would love the power to have my ideas instantly appear in writing on my computer. I have around 10 novels started and outlined, but not enough time to give all of them attention. If I could just open a little hatch in my brain and download all my thoughts, the process would go so much faster!

Where can you find Sabrina?

www.sabrinasumsion.com

www.twitter.com/sabrinasumsion

https://www.facebook.com/AuthorSabrinaSumsion

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4847683.Sabrina_Sumsion

saving-the-heroFINALSaving the Hero

Book One

Sabrina Sumsion

Genre: Urban Fantasy

Publisher: Sanguine Publishing

Date of Publication: 8-8-2014

ISBN: 9781500569693

ASIN: B00LWTO9K0

Number of pages: 248

Word Count: 67,000

Cover Artist: Victorine Lieske

Book Description:

Two and a half weeks. That’s all the time he has left.

When loner vampire hunter Kassy is interrupted by nosy veteran, Mike, he ends up bitten, and infected with the vampire parasite. The warrior becomes her prey as she fights to find him before powerful vamps. A couple kidnappings later, she’s hiding in a cabin with him chained to the floor, and an eight-year-old girl in her care.

Death? Inevitable. When the parasite takes control, he’ll do or say anything to get non-infected blood—including seducing her. But, as they spend time together, she finds her resolve weakening. A kiss won’t fix him, but it might mend a deep hole in her heart.

Kassy is too practical to believe in miracles, but if he survives eighteen days without ingesting human blood, there is a chance he could be the hero she’s been looking for.

Odds are he’s a dead man.

 

 

 

Now Available for Pre-Order!

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After an extra month in edits, Running out of Time is finally done and available for Pre-Order!

Book Description:

A cosmic event has brought death and destruction to planet earth. The landscape has changed. Only a small portion of the human race has survived and now they face a new threat.

Before Dr. Mark Stone retired from the Center for Disease Control, his final assignment was to move all samples of viruses and bacteria to a top secret facility in Nashville, TN—a facility strictly off the books to avoid terrorists from stealing potentially deadly diseases. The building was secured, but no one could have foretold of the massive earthquakes, floods, meteors, and tornadoes that rip the planet apart. The vials are broken, mixing and leaking into the heart of Nashville, infecting what few survivors exist.  Now that the bacteria have bonded and mutated, they are face with real life zombies.

The CDC calls on one of the few surviving men with the knowledge to help them treat and contain the situation but Mark has problems of his own.

Can he get his nanotech up and running before the human race is finally erased from the planet, or will he run out of time?

Spotlight: @Matt_Holgate

01

The Dim Realm, Volume I

Matt Holgate

Genre: Sci-Fi & Fantasy

Date of Publication: June 4, 2012

ASIN: B0089U0B16

ISBN: 1475912765

Number of pages: 717

Kindle   Kobo  Nook

Book Description:

When former blacksmith Corin Drey finds himself lying on his back in the midst of Orthin’s Wood, he cannot imagine what has happened. The last thing he remembers is searching for Thom Blaire’s wife—one of the disappeared. As he slowly sits up and looks around, he sees dead soldiers hanging from trees and other bodies scattered about the burnt forest floor. Corin knows he must find his way home—but how?

Seventeen-year-old Kara Kinfolk has an old soul. Her small town of Arrow’s Flight is idyllic and quiet. But when travelers and residents start to vanish, no one appears interested in finding them. Worse yet are the nightmares, the voices that whisper to her from the shadows, and the dark house at the center of town where secret rituals are performed. Now the house, which possesses powers that prevent anyone from entering or leaving town, has begun to desire Kara for reasons she cannot comprehend. Kara knows she must flee Arrow’s Flight—but how?

As Kara sets out on a quest to quell an ancient evil, she must rely on Corin and a stranger to help her follow a maze of clues that she hopes will lead to an escape—before it is too late.

About the Author:

Matt Holgate is a Canadian independent author of horror and fantasy, and is best known for the ongoing dark fantasy series, ‘The Resurrection Tower’. He has published three books with a fourth slated for 2015.

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Finding Matt Holgate:

Facebook

Twitter

Website

Goodreads

 

 

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Release Delay

I’d set Running out of Time to release September 6. 

The book needs another round of edits and I’d much rather put out a better novel than to rush publication and give you a book that is not up-to-par. 

As edits wrap up, I will give a release date.

Thank you for your understand and always, thank you to my fans for your support and understanding!

I Will Not Negotiate with Terrorists

I’m about to share a huge mistake with you. I’m not ashamed – I was new to the game and had NO IDEA what I was doing.

Back in 2005/6 ish, I’d finished a book and searched around on ways to get it published. I stumbled on a company called Publish America. GASP!

Foolishly, I published with them thinking this was a normal publisher. Wrong. A simple search now will warn you to stay away from them as they are a vanity publisher. But now, they have a new name. I’ll come back to that.

After the long contract was up, I’d learned a lot: editing, plot, prose etc. The book I published through them was…not good. It needs a major overhaul. The only blessing is that my name has since changed. I do not market the book. I do not want anyone to know I wrote it in case they get their hands on it. It’s just awful.

Oh, they’ll give me the rights back. For cash! Yep, these dirty rotten bastards want to charge me money to get the rights back to the book I WROTE, to a contract that HAS EXPIRED.

Here’s the latest email I received, showing me just how willing they are.

As you have seen, unfortunately [Redacted] has sold no copies in the past six months. In fact, it has produced no sales in more than thirteen months.
At this point you may want to have your book’s publishing rights reverted back to you.
We can arrange that.
Go to www.americastarbooks.net/ReturningRights and instruct us to return the rights to you. In the Ordering Instructions box, write your name and the title of your book. We will forward the termination documents to you.
There are no strings attached to this termination except the $99 processing fee that covers our administration costs and our de-listing obligations to vendors and/or wholesalers.
Thank you for having been an America Star Books author; it has been an honor for us.
And if you choose to stick around a little longer, thank you also!
America Star Books, LLLP
–Denise Pickett, contracts maintenance dept.
 This is not a processing fee. This is ransom. They are holding this book hostage. And yes, PublishAmerica is now America Star Books, LLLP. Same wolf, different sheep’s clothing.
 
Beware of companies like this. You don’t need them to publish. If you want to go it alone, the major eTailers make it easy to upload your book to them and you can go to Createspace for print. Or, if you want an actual publisher – go find an agent and push that novel!
 
Learn from this rookie mistake. I’d like America Star to take a long walk off a short pier. I won’t be paying any ransom. They can choke on it.

#Review: Sealed in Blood – Jenna Fox

Cover art Sealed in Blood J Fox

Sealed in Blood by Jenna Fox

109 pages

Published: 2014

Genre: Erotic suspense

Blurb:

**Contains sexually graphic descriptions and is intended for readers aged 18 and up**

Determined to forget her ex-fiancé, and gather the remains of her betrayed heart, Charisma Claiborne scrapes together her hard earned pennies for a dream trip to Las Vegas. On her first day in town, she has an accident with an eccentric casino owner. Enthralled by his good looks, she falls into his bed for a steamy one night stand.

But Hunt Blackwater is more than a mysterious, gorgeous casino owner. Rumors of a Native American curse and a string of inexplicable deaths follow in his wake. But the most terrifying is his ability to reach right into Charisma’s soul and make her want the things she’s convinced herself she can do without.

Unwilling to get in over her head, Charisma cuts her trip short and returns home, but trouble seems to follow her. With remembered whispers of curses in her ears, and the lingering smell of death in her nose, she wonders if she is his next victim. Things go from puzzling to harrowing as Charisma comes face to face with the greatest betrayal she could ever imagine.


Review – 4 stars!

I was introduced to Jenna Fox during an event on-line. It was her personality that enticed me to purchase this book. I don’t regret spending one penny on this wonderful steamy novel.

Her female lead, Charisma doesn’t trust men except for her bible-thumping daddy. Rich Conway has a sick and twisted infatuation with her, and a dark plan.

Hunt is everything we look for in a hero, tall, dark and handsome. He also happens to be wealthy. When Hunt and Charisma meet, the heat between them threatens to scorch the planet. The pull between them is so strong it’ll pull you from your chair.

This was a well written erotic piece, the first I’ve read from this author. I’ll definitely buy more of her books. She does a nice job writing heat into her sex scenes while keeping them from crossing the line into vulgar.

I’ll tell you this much – I need a smoke!

Buy Links:

Amazon

Smashwords

Where to find Jenna:

Twitter  Facebook

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