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Sunday, February 20, 2022

Picking Myself Up....

Pick yourself up,

Dust yourself off

And start over again....

Those are the famous lyrics from the great Nat "King" Cole song about persistence. That literally came to mind a few minutes ago. I was reading a FB post where someone asked a writing question, and in my mind, I had the answer. And it occurred to me that slowly, I'm coming back to the writing life. 

I never formally quit, but the stress of losing a family member, then the failing of my mother's health--then Covid...well, I stopped writing. 

Not only that, but I stopped reaching out to friends. I stopped doing things I love. I stopped doing things I need to do. 

I stopped living. 

Last fall, my physician gave me a paper to fill out without telling me what it was. Turns out, it was a screening for depression and boy, did I pass with flying colors! Meaning I was way far down in the toxic dump of depression. I don't keep it secret that I have bi-polar disorder, but I've always managed it through behavioral therapy, as medications have adverse effects on me. And honestly, when I get manic, I'm very productive, albeit very annoying and arrogant. And the mania generally pushes me into migraine headaches, so its self-limiting. 

Depression? Generally, I don't know its happening till I'm up to my neck. My house isn't just a mess--its broken. Honest. My back door fell off and try as I might, I couldn't repair it. So we rigged a brilliant quilted doorway that lets the dogs out at night, but keeps the worst of the cold out. Yes, I could have called a handy man, but that would have required cleaning my house. *sigh*

Then there's a the chronic pain issue. Learning to live with that taxes me to my limits. It's also the reason I'm not under my sink this very moment, fixing the pipes. It's an invisible disability (till I fall down spontaneously) and even my family doesn't quite comprehend how bad it is. My sister tells me I'm lazy. 

As you see, depression isn't just depressing, its toxic. Its illogical and dangerous. I tried to dig myself out. I tried to ignore it, pretend its not happening. But I'm tired, I'm sad and I'm ashamed. And it's been going on for years. 

So about that screening? Well, I was again referred to behavioral therapy and this time, it's just annoying. But I'm trying. And part of trying is not letting myself drown under the obligations and repairs and self-denial, but setting aside time to reconnect with my writing, explore more visual arts and even--watch TV. OMG. 

If I've fallen out of touch with you, I'm sorry. I've had nothing positive to say, and I can't stand sharing the bad stuff. You might have sent me email that I missed. I wasn't ignoring it. I forgot to pay my bill. Missed a book release party. My series came to an abrupt stop? I lost my sense of direction. I lost my words. 

I'm rebuilding. The industry has changed and I haven't changed with it. There are new trends in fiction, I'm still back in the books I was working on when I started slipping. I did a little ghostwriting, which got words flowing, and really challenged my problem solving skills. (OMG. Those outlines!!!) I wrote a western last year. Now I'm re-editing the Uncommon books and the Bacchi. Which is giving me ideas. And a new name...more on that later. 

I'm not back, not 100%, but I'm not gone like I was. I'll be honest, I'm still struggling with depression, and with it, guilt and doubt. But there's a beam of light in my tunnel. 

The photo below is a dog named Cinnamon Bear. In this photo, he's probably 11 or 12. A couple years before this was taken, Cinnamon had a seizure from a medication. As he was seizing, he slammed his head on concrete, causing a brain injury. 

The vet told his owner he'd never recover. She didn't believe him. She looked into Cinnamon's eyes and he told her he wanted to live, so she and the dog began a long journey of teaching him to walk again, to eat and poop without assistance. He recovered, but it took over a year of persistence   I took this photo when I was visiting my friend one winter. It actually wasn't a shot of him, but two other dogs, and Cinnamon was in the background of the shot. It was a bit of a miracle when I spotted him in the photo, far up on a hillside, running for the sheer joy of it. 

There's a lesson to be learned here, and I'll keep coming back and looking at Cinnamon, just so I don't forget. 

Thursday, March 19, 2020

From Deep in the Quarantine Cave!

Hello all!

It's been way, wayyyy too long since I've been here on my blog! I always have good intentions, but not very good follow through. But since I'm home for the foreseeable future, it seemed like a good idea to fire up the blog again.

As you can see from the title of the blog, I'm self-quarantining from the Coronavirus largely due to the risks this illness would post to the health of my mother, who is 86 years old and while she's in great health, she fare well if she caught it. We're adapting. Mostly my sister goes out and does the shopping, etc, because she works at Wal Mart. She's an official sanitizer, that person you've been seeing in all the stores who walked around with a spray bottle and rags, making sure the surfaces are bug-free for a few seconds.

Life hasn't changed too much for me, but the few changes there have been are profound. Of course, I'm staying at home now. No dog shows, to trips to the self-grooming parlor. No movies. (dammit!) And my oldest daughter got trapped in the US when Salvador closed its borders, so she's staying at her sister's house. Ironically, I can't see my daughters, or my grandsons because my youngest is a dental hygienist, which is the career that's at top risk for contracting/carrying the Coronavirus.


Now to business.

I'm slowly re-releasing all my titles from Loose Id, Changeling and Dreamspinner to self-publishing formats. If you're looking for something to read, several titles are on Kindle Unlimited. I'll be posting the third Imperative book, (Saving You) An Uncommon Whore and Belle Starr very soon, as they're all covered. I'm working on a few new titles, but I've learned not to share too much since I kinda bounce around between works. Rest assured, I'll share when I'm ready!

AND I'm going to start sharing a whole bunch of Amazon Author pages where you can find more KU books of all genres. So if you have a subscription, this is a great way to take advantage of it! So many authors shared that I'll be doing it in chunks.

I'll also be sharing it in my newsletter.

You do subscribe to my newsletter, don't you? If not, just head on over to my website ( and sign up using the form there.

For now, take a deep breath, pick up the phone and chat with a friend, stream a movie--and wash your hands!

BTW, I have soap for sale...lots of Nag Champa hemp soap. It's groovy.

For now, Happy Tails!

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

An Uncommonly Beautiful Cover...Coming Soon!

This year marks the 10th anniversary of the release of my Space Opera novel An Uncommon Whore. Can you believe its been that long?

When the book first released, I was stunned and humbled by the gorgeous cover art by PL Nunn. And so grateful she continued with the series during that run.

When Loose Id closed its doors last year, Dreamspinner Press stepped up and contracted Uncommon 1, 2, 3 and The Bacchi. As part of the re-release of the series, I added about 22,000 words to An Uncommon Whore, expanding the story quite a lot. Over the years, there were elements I really wished I'd written about and finally got the chance!

As part of the re-release, we decided the cover art, though it was iconic, was in need of an update. It was a hard decision to make, but it was time to move on.

Later this week, I'll be debuting the new cover of An Uncommon Whore. While I was in New Orleans at Book Lover's Con, I got to see it, and boy howdy...they did an awesome job! It's true to the character and the sensual feel of the original, but its fresh and unique to this release.

Stand by, folks, I'll announce the reveal in the next day or two!