A Tale for the Ages | My First #Novel on #Giveaway

FIREFLIES is Free on Kindle until October 23, 2018.

A couple reviews:

5 Stars: “This novel is a beautifully written work of love, family values, and a soulful connection to the spirit world. It reflects the time when countless migrated to the US to escape hard times in their own homelands . It shows how fragile life was then, and how through love and prayer almost anything is possible. The characters become your friends as their lives entwine with the spirit world and their day to day existence. You laugh and cry as Ennis leads you threw his short but meaningful life, only to feel goose bumps as the novel concludes. Definitely a must read”

5 Stars “This novel is a beautifully written work of love, family values, and a soulful connection to the spirit world.”

 

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I gave #Keto a Veto and Other Stupid Ramblings

Eight whole days…almost nine!

No bread. No pasta. No to a whole bunch of things actually.

Somehow, for the past eight days, I’ve managed quite easily to live with less than 50 carbs a day. I figured I’ve tried a lot of diets in my adult life post children and the only thing that ever worked was less calories. This was something I hadn’t tried yet so I figured what the heck?

In a world where I can step out of the shower and ten minutes later be standing in a pool of my own sweat in a 70 degree house, and just gaze into the creamy deliciousness of a gelati and gain five pounds…you get the picture, just cutting calories wasn’t cutting anymore.

menopause

I try to stay active but since my daughter and granddaughters moved out a year ago, I’ve gained thirty pounds. THIRTY POUNDS.

I still look pretty good and it’s not as if my 5’6″ frame can’t handle it but I’m feeling the effects of the weight more and more now. My knee hurts more, I get winded more easily and although I know this new waistline is par for the menopausal course, that doesn’t mean I have to live with it for the rest of my life.

Back to the Keto…

I was doing great. I wasn’t even craving carbs at all! Every day I could see them fading in my rear view mirror…that was until last night. As I headed up to bed, I felt woosy and light headed and yet noticed a headache coming all at once. I hurried into bed and fell asleep but not before experiencing a bit of heart palpitations that I’ll admit, scared me a bit.

Then this morning, it hit. There’s this thing they call the Keto flu. Basically, your body feels like you have the flu. I had a headache, body aches and all over lethargic feeling. I hurriedly Googled the side effects of Keto and bam, there it was.

According to the article I linked above, symptoms can last about a week or more. So now I need to ask myself if this is worth seeing through. I’m taking into account my age, menopause and the fear that I may be one of the unlucky folks who takes a lot longer to detox from carbohydrates. I’m not sure what to do yet but so far, in just eight days my body has already started going through a transition that I like aesthetically if not physiologically. I’ll wait and see and if this keeps up, I’m back to calorie counting. I’ll still keep my carbs low but not like I have been. I’m not trying to injure myself to lose that 30lbs.

Next rambling…so, if you haven’t read any of my Ancestry blogs, Here’s a link to one. I had such incredible success with my maternal grandfather’s side that I was spoiled for the real hard stuff. I also decided I want to dig deeper into the DNA history so I sent of a test to Geno 2.0. It’s a much more in depth test and will even give you your Neanderthal percentage if you have any. Since 99% of my DNA comes from Europe, I’m fairly certain I have some Neanderthal. Did you know it is pronounced Ne-an-der-tal? It is indeed.

So, with my maternal grandfather Russ’ pedigree being so major, and all the incredible ancestors I have on that side, it still hurts and shocks me that his kids and grandchildren etc. who know I exist, still want nothing to do with me. Every time I check my DNA matches, there’s my uncle Jack and my cousin Jackie who obviously want no parts of me. I mean, what’s not to love? I’m smart, kind, successful and not half bad looking…even with the extra 30lbs…but seriously. What makes people act like this?

I know my grandfather was this big famous band leader, musician and writer, and never legally acknowledged my mother…his love child…but that was 95 years ago! They’ve denied it all my life and now, even when presented with actual DNA evidence, they still reject any contact with me or my family. I could see if I was like Trailer Trash Tammy or something but we’re good, honest, decent, down to earth people. I definitely don’t want anything from them and neither does the rest of my family. I guess some people prefer living a comfortable lie than an inconvenient truth.

Their loss…but it still hurts and probably always will. 

Maybe someday I’ll write a book about it all…

I still want a cat.

My thirteen year old kitty passed back in March. I think I’m over the grieving process for him (gone too soon) because recently I’ve been obsessing over searching for a new best friend. He was so beautiful and sweet I’m afraid I’ll fall in love with some kitty and I’ll end up on that TV show My Cat From Hell. My husband isn’t ready yet. He keeps telling me no way but yes way. It’s going to happen. A house is not a home to me without a fur baby in it.

My Kitty

Well that’s about it for tonight. The evil Keto Flu is kicking my butt.

Nighty Night…zzzzz

Peg

A Big Thank You and An Added #Bonus! #FREE #Audiobooks!

First I’m sending out a HUGE thank you to everyone who participated in my free ebook promo last week!

Secondly, if you haven’t tried Audible before, you can try it free for 30 days and get FIREFLIES free in the process!

That’s right! Follow my special link for your free 30 day trial and get FIREFLIES for free too! 

The offer is risk free and you can cancel it at any time!

Here’s what some readers and listeners are saying:

 Amazing couldn’t stop listening 

Great story with a surprise ending, like nothing you have ever read before. Definitely will be reading more from this author.

 Great listen and well worth the credit 

I received this book to listen to while on a road trip with my Mom. We both thoroughly enjoyed the book and the miles just passed by quickly. We were disappointed to reach our first destination 8.5 hours in because we wanted to continue to listen. This book keeps you entertained and captivated. Heather Jane Hogan is becoming one of my favorite narrators on audible. I would and have recommended this book to others. I look forward to the next book in this series.

Completely Absorbing

This story has a piece of the past, of several generations, as well as the ever consuming present, all put into the story line that carries you along with the characters through a growing spiritual and emotional time into a future life.

A Mystery Wrapped in much love

Well-written, good strong, distinct characters. Great storyline. This family of eight’s love & tolerance (which is the bedrock of level-headedness) allow it to deal with an extraordinary development through to resolution. The main story occurs over the course of a week or two. The six children range in age from 5/6 to 18. You don’t realize until three quarters through the book that the main thread running through all may be a mystery. If I say anything else that would be a spoiler.

Thank you all so much again! 

10 Things I Wish I Knew About Being an Author

Owl

  1. Unless you’re already famous for something else; rock star, movie actor, professional athlete—you most likely will not sell a million copies of your book—your first book let’s say. For Joe Shmo and P.S. Bartlett and many other authors, being successful takes a good deal of time, good marketing and a great support base. If you’re hoping to get rich quick by being a writer, you may want to get that record deal or Lakers contract first.

  2. You have to have either a very good memory or be incredibly organized. Between scheduling writing time, writing your blog, tweeting, running contests, Facebook pages, email addresses, writing your book and not to mention holding down a full time job, keeping house, cooking, cleaning and keeping your significant other from leaving you due to you forgetting not only their birthday but their name, you may have time to pee and walk the cat—I mean dog.

  3. It can be a very lonely career. Writers need a lot of solitary time to write. I’ll admit, I’ve been writing and someone will come into the room and most often they will ask that all too important question, “Are you writing?” but occasionally the matter is important to them. Forgive them because they don’t realize you’re right in the middle of taking down an army of giant trolls and when you read back over what you wrote later, try not to get upset with them when your troll has forgotten to do their homework and needs an excuse note for their teacher or they’ve set the kitchen on fire.

  4. People want your swag. If you’re not an author and you’re reading this, no, they do not want your lovely new curtains, they want goodies that show off your books. There is a bit of an investment involved but it’s oh so worth when your fans want something special to go with their books. Bookmarks, buttons, charms and t-shirts make great swag but always remember your fans love your books and they are going to want some swag so you better have it ready.

  5. Getting published is as easy as 1, 2, 3 (and other fairy tales). There are literally millions of books on Amazon alone—go look if you don’t believe me. Looks pretty simple doesn’t it? (I’ll be right back I’m rolling on the floor laughing). Even if you become frustrated with the process of querying agents and publishers and decide to self-publish your book, there are plenty of really nice and friendly people waiting in line to take your money and help you do just that—choose wisely. Do background checks if you have to but please be careful.

  6. Depending on which genre you write in, you must do your research. Nero didn’t smoke cigars—neither did pirates. I’ll bet you didn’t know that did you? Okay well even if you claim you did, do you have to be 100% historically accurate? Well yes, you should. Of course you can use your imagination to create new scenarios, for instance Abraham Lincoln as a vampire hunter but if old Abe whips out his iPod or says, “Hey, pass the Grey Poupon,” I’m sorry but your more experienced reader is gonna close the book on you.

  7. I didn’t know authors were zombies. I’ve learned to accomplish more things while half asleep than some people do wide awake—I think. Well I try.Okay I thought I did those things!

  8. Social networking is very important but don’t beg. If you’re a new author, currently writing your first novel or even thinking about it, you better have a Facebook, a Twitter, a Google+ and a blog at the very least or you are already way behind. The irony of all of this is under point number 3. I compare this lifestyle to living like a gopher. In the hole, out of the hole. In the hole, out of the hole. We hide and write and in the next breath, we stick our head out, make a bunch of really cool new friends, say hello to our fans and then run back in our holes. Please, just don’t bombard people with “Over here! Look at me! PLEASE look at me! WILL YOU FREAKING LOOK OVER HERE!!!” Build relationships. Support your fellow writers and above all, don’t steal their golf balls.

  9. Not everyone likes you and once you’re published, they may like you even less. As we strive to write that perfect, wonderful book that of course everyone wants to read and it miraculously gets published and we’re deliriously happy and sharing our happiness with anyone who will listen on every social media site and at every cocktail party or barbeque we attend, there is someone or someones lurking and guess what—they don’t like you, never did and they’ll be mean to you. They’ll give you anonymous bad reviews or say not so nice things about your book—since it is of course the source of your happiness. The answer to this is very simple. Write them into your next novel and kill them. Done.

  10. People will like you and they’ll love your book. The most incredible feeling you get when your book is published and you start receiving feedback from complete strangers as to how good or even great it is will blow you away. Besides the birth of my children and grandchildren, giving birth to my first novel and holding it in my hands for the first time was nothing short of euphoria. Within its pages or gigabytes lies your blood, sweat and tears. It’s an asexual reproduction of your deepest thoughts and your wildest dreams, and you don’t need an epidural or puff puff blow to bring it into the world—however, a little shot of tequila or in my case RumChata to welcome its arrival never hurt anybody.

Did Ya Miss Me? I Was Off and Running Again ~ #Vacation Time

Since we scored a very nice condo for a steal for four days, this poor, (and I do mean poor!) struggling author was able to afford a nice little long weekend getaway in Ocean City, MD. I cannot remember exactly how many times I’ve been to this place but we’re talking about ME and the OCEAN so does it even matter?

Here are some highlights:

Bay bridge

This is the Chesapeake Bay Bridge that connects the Eastern Shore of Maryland to the Western Shore where I live. Unless you want to drive 100 miles out of your way, there is no way to avoid this bridge. Get used to it. We all do.

 

Our cheap but swanky little pad for the weekend. Okay so not swanky but super cute, cozy and homey.

Our cheap but swanky little pad for the weekend. Okay so not swanky but super cute, cozy and homey.

Ahhhh at last!

Ahhhh at last!

toes

Sweet little lunch on the balcony prepared by men in swim trunks.

Sweet little lunch on the balcony prepared by men in swim trunks.

Sister in law from heaven...she knows all about vacations.

Sister in law from heaven…she knows all about vacations.

Very important supplies!

Very important supplies! Nothing but the best for us…lol It was so good too!

Yours truly ready to party!

Yours truly ready to party!

Beautiful evening with friends on the Chesapeake Bay at Seacrets.

Beautiful evening with friends on the Chesapeake Bay at Seacrets.

I SWEAR there was food too and I highly recommend the smoked tuna...to die for!

I SWEAR there was food too and I highly recommend the smoked tuna…to die for!

beach ready

Ready for the beach baby! Sorry, no full length mirror so the balcony door had to do.

Barn 34

Breakfast! Poached eggs with sauteed spinach, fresh tomatoes and avacados at a new favorite place, Barn 34! A bit pricey but the food was excellent!

breakfast

Breakfast was also provided by room service…aka my brother in law Bill. Even better because it was included in the price of our room and we didn’t have to dress up and go out to eat it! Pancakes, western omelets and country fried potatoes!

sky shot

Spectacular sunsets every night…those are free.

sunset on the bay

Here I am again, ready for a fun evening! Tonight, all you can eat steamed crabs at the Crab Bag!

Here I am again, ready for a fun evening! Tonight, all you can eat steamed crabs at the Crab Bag! They had to roll me out of there!

the fog

The view from our balcony at about 6:45am on May 30th.

 

after the fog

Same view an our later. Hello Atlantic Ocean my love!

Yeah...this place. The oldest bar in Ocean City, MD. Mainly locals only. Most pro basketball players cannot come here unless they sit down the entire time. It was a blast and the beers were cheap!

Yeah…this place. The oldest bar in Ocean City, MD. Mainly locals only. Most pro basketball players cannot come here unless they sit down the entire time. It was a blast and the beers were cheap!

Marina

Directly across the street from the Harbor Inn.

Harbor Inn

 

Coming Home

All wonderful things must come to an end. Hello Maryland traffic. Back to the real world. 😦

 

 

 

Easter 2015 – My Family is So Wonderful!

A day in pictures…

Easter6

I’m ready to go to MeeMaw’s Sis!

 

Easter2

And they’re off!

Easter5

MeeMaw, are you cheating?

Easter7

I have this bag full of eggs! And a runny nose!

Easter8

I’m just so happy to be here!

Easter9

The cutest cousins ever!

Easter11

More cute cousins!

Easter14

Bigger cousins 🙂

Easter16

Cheesing with the future daughter in law.

Easter 2015 Easter3

Easter10 Easter12 Easter13 Easter15

Easter4

DONE! 🙂