Friday, October 29, 2010

Song of the Week - "Monster Mash" by Bobby "Boris" Pickett

In celebration of Halloween this weekend, I just had to put up "Monster Mash" by Bobby "Boris" Pickett for the Song of the Week.  You just can't have Halloween without listening to this song at least once.  And I saw this video YouTube and thought it was really cute :-)

Here's wishing everyone a safe and happy Halloween weekend!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

CONQUEST is an EPIC Awards finalist!!

Last night, I received an email that still has me spinning, bouncing, and happy dancing.  My m/m rock star novel, CONQUEST, is a finalist for the 2011 EPIC ebook Awards Competition™!  The Eppies are one of the largest and most prestigious awards a book in ebook format can receive.  To final is an honor beyond honor.  I keep going back to the email, thinking I must have dreamed it, but every time the email is still there and the words are still the same, CONQUEST is a finalist.  Ecstatic doesn't even begin to cover how excited I am about this!  Winners will be announced in March 2011 at a ceremony in Williamsburg, Virginia.

But you know, Conquest didn't get to this point alone.  It's all thanks to the support of my readers, the hours of hard work from my editor, my publisher's faith in me, and the judges who took their time to read it.  And of course, I can't let my main character, Jesse Alexander, get away without a thank you.  It's his story after all, and I'm grateful to have been able to tell it.  Thank you, so very much, to everyone who has helped me achieve this honor!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Weekly Inspiration - Edilson Nascimento

Last week was a crazy one and I missed posting any inspiration!  Sorry!  So I'm going to try and make up for it by presenting Brazilian model, Edilson Nascimento.  If the words "Brazilian" and "model" side by side aren't inspiration enough, just take a look at him and he's sure to get your imagination going.  I couldn't track down a website for him, but he's ALL over the Internet.  Just do a Google search on his name and you'll get page after page featuring him, and pics galore with him showing a lot more than what I've posted here.  So, here's hoping he makes up for my incompetence in missing last week's inspiration ;-)

Saturday, October 23, 2010

And the winner is...

Melanie!  Congratulations!  You've won the full set of Conquest novels in print or ebook!  All I need is to have you drop me an email at so I can get your info :D

Between the comments here and the emails that came in, there were a lot of entries!  To keep things fair and impartial, I took all entries, gave each a number, then put those numbers into the list randomizer at  With all the numbers juggled around, I matched the number in first place to the person assigned it, and that's how the winner was selected.  It's the only way I could do it, because I wish I could give copies to everyone! 

And I can't let anyone who entered get away without my sincerest thank you and appreciation for entering the contest, but most of all, for the many birthday wishes and congrats.  I wanted to do this giveaway to try and give something back for all the kindness that's been shown to me since I've become a published author.  Instead, I was the one who ended up with so many gifts in the sweet words people said me.  I'll never be able to catch up to you all and your generosity, but I'm so grateful to you.  I'll continue to try and show my appreciation with putting out the best writing I'm capable of, and through posting more free short stories on my website that all can enjoy.

Thank you again, so very, very much.  You all are amazing!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Birthday/Anniversary Giveaway!

Today is a special day for me.  It's the day I was born!  Yay!  I'm really happy about that ;)  But it's also a special day for a second reason.  One year ago today, my debut novel, CONQUEST, went live!  With those two things happening on one date, how can I not want to celebrate?

This past year has been a wild ride with CONQUEST and my other novels getting published.  So many people have welcomed me and my books with kindness and friendship, and I'll always be grateful for that.  And though these words seem small in comparison to what others have done in taking their time to read my stories, from the bottom of my heart, thank you.

To celebrate my birthday and CONQUEST's one year anniversary, I'd like to offer a giveaway.  One lucky person will have the chance to win a set of all Conquest novels in print or ebook, winner's choice.  If the winner chooses print, I will sign all three copies.  To enter the contest, just comment on this post that you'd like to be put in the running.  If you comment as "anonymous", please put your name or another way I can identify you in case you win.  Or since I know blogs can be finicky about letting comments post, you can also email me at  Just put "contest" or "giveaway" in the subject.  To give everyone in different timezones a chance, I'll accept entries up until 12:00 pm Eastern U.S. time on October 23rd.  I'll also announce the winner that same Saturday. 

And now, let the party begin!  Good luck to all who enter!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

In Memory Of

Today I'm dressed in a purple sweater for Spirit Day to honor Tyler Clementi, Asher Brown, Seth Walsh, Raymond Chase, Justin Aaberg, Billy Lucas, Zach Harrington, and many others who have been bullied for their sexuality.  The young men who I named paid the ultimate price for the cruelty, hate, and bigotry shown toward them by taking their own lives, and I know many other precious lives have been lost for the same reason.

To bully another person is one of the most loathsome things someone can do.  The old saying, "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me," is about as much of a mistruth ever spoken.  Words do hurt, powerfully and deeply, leaving scars that can continue to ache for many years.  And far too often, bullying escalates beyond words to physical harm.  But bullying can be stopped.  If we as a society stand up and say enough, it can end. 

When someone is bullied, though they may once have had the confidence to stand up for themselves, constant harassment can wear them down.  Others are never given a chance to gain confidence in themselves.  That's why we need to step in, to be their shields and their strength, to let them know they're not alone and they're cared about.

There's no greater loss to this world than a life taken too soon.  So I ask, please, if you know someone who could be the target of bullying, take a few minutes to talk to them, let them know you have the strength for them to lean on, that you're there for them.  If you're being bullied, know I'm saying these words to you, you are cared for, you're not alone, there are people who will face the bullies with you, there are people who will stand at your side to help you through anything.  Take pride in yourself, because the person you are is someone beautiful and dear to the world.   And if anyone reading this feels they need to talk to someone trained to help, one place you can look to is The Trevor Project

If we all join together, we can work to stop the abuse and hurt.  Awareness is one step, kindness is another.  The two combined can help put an end to bullying. 


Friday, October 15, 2010

Song of the Week - "Just a Dream" by Nelly

My Song of the Week goes to Nelly with his new single, "Just a Dream."  Really since Gackt was my Weekly Inspiration, he should get the spot, but I've been loving this song on the radio all week.  And since Gackt is guaranteed to have a few spots in the future, I figured it'd be okay to give this one to Nelly ;-)  This song is going to be on his upcoming album, 5.0, which the last I heard is slated for release on November 16th of this year.

And hey, I'm actually remembering this time to mention that I don't own the video, the song, the images, or any copyrights connected with it.  With that legal stuff said, here's Nelly with "Just a Dream."  Enjoy!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Weekly Inspiration - GACKT

Ah, Gackt.  How dost thou inspire me?  Let me count the ways.  For this week's inspiration, I'm presenting rock star and man of many talents, Gackt.  If you talk to me about music for longer than thirty seconds, it's pretty much guaranteed I'm going to bring him up since he's one of my favorite artists.  I swooned the first time I heard his voice and I don't think I've stopped since.  I'm sure he'll come up again in "Weekly Inspiration" posts, and he's certain to get a few "Song of the Week" dedications.  Can't help it if I'm a little biased toward him ;-)  

To learn more about him, you can find his music on iTunes, and see videos, performances, and interviews on YouTube.  For his official website, click HERE.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Song of the Week & Curse of the Tech Gods, Part Two

"We Are The Champions" gets to be my song for this week.  Besides Queen being my all time favorite band, I also have another reason.  I defeated my website and I'm feeling the need for an anthem to my victory!  Yes, I know that makes pretty much no sense, so let me try to fill y'all in on what's been going on.

Some weeks ago, I did a post called Curse of the Tech Gods about my website's template having some issues and crashing.  When I reinstalled the template, while it was functional, it wasn't quite what it should be.  But hey, it was working, so I left it alone.  Well, yesterday its last thread of functionality snapped.  The submenus for my novel excerpts and free reads stopped working, and try as I might, it just wouldn't be fixed.  I decided it was time to let go of my beloved template, and go with a new one.  Just one problem.  When I replaced the template, all my content was lost and replaced with generic pics and content in Spanish, which I'm sad to say, I can't speak or read, so for a few hours, I have no idea what was written on my website.

I went through two techies who couldn't fix it, and finally got to a Senior Tech.  They were able to retrieve my lost content and put it up again...with my original template...with all its problems.  This morning, I pushed up my sleeves and prepared for battle.  I was not going to lose to the Tech Gods again!  I would have a functional website!  Oh yes, I would.  And now, I do!  I have a new and I'm hoping functional template.  I lost some content from my News section, but other than that, all my original content is there.

So, if you happen to cruise over to my website and notice an all new look, that's why.  And if you have any problems with it, please, please, please, don't hesitate to contact me and let me know.  It would be very much appreciated :-) 

And now, for my anthem.  Freddie Mercury and Queen with "We Are The Champions."

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Happy birthday, Jesse!

Today is October 7th, the birthday of Jesse Alexander, singer extraordinaire and main character in my novels, CONQUEST and NO FEAR.  It's mentioned in CONQUEST the 7th is his birthday, and since writing the story, whenever this day comes around, I always have to tell him happy birthday.  Is it a little kooky of me?  Maybe.  But I make no secret that Jesse is very special to me and I give him credit for making me a published author.

So, happy birthday, dear Jesse.   And don't worry, I'll leave singing the "Happy Birthday Song" to Evan.  I know you'll like that much better than my off key screeching ;-) 

Wednesday, October 6, 2010


So, I live in the wilds of Ohio.  Okay, it's not that wild.  Well, minus the fact that deer, raccoons, possums, and every other type of creature wander onto our property, and I was late going somewhere the other day because a flock of wild turkeys was blocking the road.  I guess that does sound like the unsettled frontier, doesn't it?  Since I'm a huge animal lover, I really enjoy seeing all the wildlife and sharing space with them.  But lately, I've had some run-ins with creatures I'm not all that thrilled about cohabitating with.

A few weeks ago on Facebook, I posted about the alien caterpillar who had been trying to invade my house.  It's a very cool looking little creature, though a little creepy, too.  After I took this picture, it promptly got moved off the door frame to a bush.  By the hubby.  No way I was going to touch it!

Now, if it was just this strange caterpillar, I'd be cool.  But not long ago, the hubby was chopping wood and was nearly eaten by the largest spider either of us have ever seen around here.  Of course, he had to catch it to show me.  I'm just glad he survived.  And yes, that's an egg sack Shelob is protecting (yay for a random LOTR reference).  Being the way I am, I felt bad for her and had the hubby release her and her future eight-legged demon spawn in a safe place.  I just couldn't let her be killed.  She was going to be a mother, after all.

And that's not all.  A few days ago, I went into my upstairs bathroom, and what did I find?  A toad on the toilet!  I stared at it, thinking it couldn't possibly be what I thought it was, but sure enough, yes it was.  But this isn't the first strange amphibian experience I've had this year, oh no!  This is the third!  The first happened earlier in the year when I was walking in the woods and a green tree frog jumped out at me.  I didn't even know there were tree frogs in my area.  Even the hubby was doubtful when I told him.  A couple weeks later, I opened the back door, and what hopped into the house?  A tree frog!  The hubby was rather surprised, but we caught said frog and returned him to the great outdoors, just as I did with this stray toad who seemed to think my bathroom would make a perfect winter home. 

Now, it's possible Toady got into the house the same way the tree frog did, but what I want to know is how did it get up a flight of stairs to the bathroom?!  Without a single one of my cats spotting it?!  I'm still baffling over it. 

Ah, country livin'.  I love animals and nature.  I truly do.  Even though the creepy crawlies aren't my favorites, I know they have their place in the world, too.  And I do have to admit, Toady and the tree frogs were kinda cute ;-)

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Weekly Inspiration - Ivan Rusilko

For this week's inspiration I present, Ivan Rusilko.  Who besides having a really cool name, is also a model, an aspiring doctor, and Mr. USA.  For his website where you can see more pics or him, click HERE.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Song of the Week - "Someday" by Rob Thomas

This week, I'm all about Rob Thomas, solo and when with Matchbox Twenty.  For my Song of the Week, I picked one of his newer songs, "Someday", off his 2009 solo release, Cradlesong.  I absolutely love this song and the video.  Hope everyone else enjoys, too!