Monday, January 25, 2016

New Secret Project!

I did it! Got another secret ghostwriting project! Can't wait to start it. In the meantime, though, I have to focus on expanding HOME. Super news about that coming up soon, too!

That cold kicked my ass most of the snow weekend! I didn't even get to enjoy it! I spent most of it sleeping and coughing and feeling miserable. For some stupid reason, I even binge-watched the entire series of Celebrity Plastic Surgeons of Beverly Hills on Netflix.

Honestly, I thought it was contrived and kind of scripted. I also drank a lot of wine and tea, seeing as I didn't really have anywhere much to go or things to do. Tennessee basically shuts down during snows. We're just not equipped.

The moment I got back to work today, we were basically bombarded. I've really got to get on working on my writing outside of my day job.

Have a good week, y'all!

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Snow Day is a Writing Day!

It's a snow day in Middle Tennessee!  That means all the bread and milk is gone from the grocery stores and the schools are closed! And guess what... we only got an inch of snow, at the most. 

But I have a Mac... nyuck, nyuck
I don't bother driving on the interstate during a snow day because people just don't know how to drive on slick and icy surfaces here. It would take hours to get to my job 20 miles down I-24. So, today is a writing day, too!

What downtown Nashville looked like this morning

I'm trying to edit and expand on Home right now. It's way too short to sell as a YA novel. But, I'll get there. I haven't really worked on it for a long time (like six months) so I've got fresh eyes to look at it, which is a good thing.

I'm also finishing up a Harry Potter movie marathon from the long weekend, in honor of Alan Rickman's passing, plus, I've been listening to a lot of David Bowie. Man, we lost some great artists last week! I still stand by that the only man allowed to sparkle is David Bowie and Alan Rickman will always be my favorite movie villain.

Unfortunately, I'm getting the beginnings of a sore throat and sore sinuses. Boo! I hate getting sick. I'm just going to sip some hot tea with honey and some whiskey (afternoon thing), and try to exercise it out of my system. Shaun T's T25 and Zumba Wii, here I come! I'm also going to use my friend Lindsay Penner of the Green Penn's cure-all recipe for colds she shared with me:

1-2 tomatoes
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
2-4 cloves garlic, minced
Dash of cayenne pepper  
Directions: Blend tomatoes, add in apple cider vinegar, garlic, and cayenne pepper. Drink this before bedtime and a nap to get it to work. These ingredients are great antibiotics, and you can thin it with water.

I hope this helps you out if you're going through a rotten cold! I'm going to give it a try and I'll update y'all on how it works.

Have a nice snow day!

PS: I hope you all saw Elisa Dane's cover reveal and pre-ordered Abandoned. Come on, y'all! Right now it's only $0.99 on Amazon kindle! Add it to your Goodreads TBR, too!

Monday, January 18, 2016

Abandoned Cover Reveal!

Guess what!

It's here! Elisa Dane's Abandoned has a book cover!

I can't wait!
What a teaser!

You're all gonna love it!



Scroll down for more!

Elisa Dane
Published by: Swoon Romance
Publication date: February 15th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult
My name is Tierra Owens, and I like to kiss. A lot. It numbs the hollow ache in my chest and—for a few minutes—makes me forget how truly alone I am. My mother is an alcoholic. She hates me and insists I’m the reason she’s not married to my father, whom I have never met. My best friend, Kaylee, is the only person who knows the real me. Everyone else sees what I want them to: a happy, confident, popular girl who has the world at her feet.
I am a fraud.
Relationships are forbidden. I avoid them at all costs. Sex? Emotions? Those things make a person vulnerable, and vulnerability always leads to heartbreak. When my childhood crush, Mattie shows up at school my world tumbles off its axis. The shell I surround myself with feels more like a pathetic crutch than a protective barrier, and I find myself wanting things. Daydreaming about what it would be like to have a boyfriend, a relationship—love.
The sad fact is: I’ll never have any of those things. I am unworthy—trash. Which is why my mom abandoned me.

Author Bio:
ELISA DANE is a self-proclaimed book junkie. A lover of handbags, chocolate, and reality television, she's a proud mother to three All- Star cheerleaders. Writing is her absolute passion, and it's her mission to create stories that will not only take you on a romantic journey that will warm your heart, but help you find a new respect and interest in the sport of All-Star cheerleading.
Elisa is no stranger to the publishing world. She writes steamy paranormal romance under her real name, Lisa Sanchez. Her adult works include the Hanford Park series (Eve Of Samhain, Pleasures Untold, and Faythe Reclaimed), Obsessed (an erotic suspense), and a paranormal novella, Cursing Athena. Elisa lives in Northern California with her husband, three daughters, and a feisty Chihuahua who stubbornly believes she's human.

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Saturday, January 16, 2016

Why I don't think I'll be able to go vegan

To start off, I don't want people telling me what diet to do, what to eat, how to exercise, especially online because you don't know me and you aren't my doctor. You haven't seen my lab work, and you don't know my history. So any comments giving me unsolicited "advice" will get deleted because I'm not writing about that today, but it's okay to talk about what works for YOU or ask me questions.
What I am writing about?
I love vegan foods.
But at the same time, I don't see how I can balance my diet without meat and I want to control my sugar and fat intake. Getting a full intake of protein is pretty tough sometimes. I remember a few months ago, I was snacking on some red peppers during a training at work, and a guy asked me if I was vegan, and I told him no. He then said, "Well, it's the next step in loosing weight and getting healthy." Um, excuse me, Mister, who asked you?
When I became Orthodox Christian, we fast, roughly, if you add it all up, approximately six months out of the year. We fast on Wednesdays and Fridays, we fast for the Nativity (Advent), Lent, two weeks in August for the Dormition of the Theotokos, and two weeks in June for the Apostle's fast. I really thought I'd get thin by all the fasting (when we fast, we go vegan, basically), but I didn't. Of course, aiming to get "thin" sort of spoils the spiritual fruits of fasting, just letting you know I understand that.
There are things I COULD do, like protein shakes, but I've found a lot of them that are palatable have more than half my daily sugar intake (which I limit to 25 grams) in exchange for only 16 grams of precious protein. I want more than 75 gram of protein a day, I tend to lose weight when I eat my proteins. I need a lot more protein and less sugar and bad fats. It just doesn't balance. When I didn't care about sugar and nutrition and only limiting my calories, I ended up maintaining my weight, not losing. I realized I have to be more careful about my nutrition. I started off eating a lot of fruit and vegetables, no longer consuming processed food, but not looking at my sugar intake, and it didn't work. Then, I saw the documentary Fed Up, and it all started to come together in my head:
Not me, of course, but it might as well be
My problem in my diet is sugar.
And bad fats, too, but I realized I need to take control of my sugar intake.
I do well when I broil some chicken breasts in my crockpot overnight and just nibble on them between meals, that brings my protein gram count up. And when I make my own food, I can control the amount of sugar that goes into it and make sugar-free substitutions. I try to avoid processed foods as much as I can. My doctor agreed with me, one piece of fruit a day is good, if I also include five vegetables and adequate protein.
I'm sure there are going to be people out there that want to offer me unwanted "advice" and tell me that sugar doesn't matter, but it does matter to me: I have diabetes in my family, and I'm afraid I'll get it. Maybe that's paranoia, but I'm seeing things affecting me, and I don't want them to as I age.  And I'm learning to listen to my body and try to give it what it needs while making sure I feel satisfied.
Last weekend, I was chatting with a hair stylist and a make-up artist about healthy diets and attitudes. One of them was allergic to gluten, the other was vegan. That worked for the both of them. The vegan said she lost a LOT of weight when she ate all the fruits and vegetables she wanted. My doc and I agreed that I should limit my fruits and try to focus on proteins. What works for me (when I can stick to it) is going low-sugar and high protein. While being vegan sounds cool and good for the environment, I don't think it's what's best for my body. I know my body better than anyone. And I tried for years to torture it to get thinner, and guess what? That didn't work. There are cool people out there like Sharee Samuels, whom I admire, who lost over 100 pounds by working out hard and going vegan, but I don't know if my body could handle that. I NEED protein. And then there's dotdotTiffany, another weight-loss superstar I admire, that also lost over 100 pounds by working out and watching what she eats, which she details here. She started losing weight by eating pre-packaged frozen meals and exercising, but now she eats clean (unprocessed) and exercises, but she still eats her chocolate!
You can't hate your body to health.
That's my new mantra.
So, I'm going to try to love it to health.

Friday, January 8, 2016

What One Week Without Posting Politics to my Facebook Did for Me

Mid-December, I thought about very quietly taking a break from posting politics for a week come New Year's.
No, I'm not ashamed of my politics. I'm quite proud of them. They didn't come easy to me, and I can explain why I believe what I believe. I like talking about them to people who actually comprehend them (even if they don't agree) instead of shouting theirs back in my face without listening to a thing I'm saying. But being as they were inspired by some really private things, it's sometimes inappropriate to bring up these things, despite my lack of shame over them.
I realize that the reason I've gotten into posting politics on Facebook was just a few short years ago, I was miserable. I didn't like myself, and I wanted to control a lot of things because I thought I knew that if I controlled other people, they'd be happy and I'd be happy.
So wrong.
When I finally entered treatment at the end of my rope at the end of 2012, I started to learn that I can't control other people and expect them to be happy. I can't let another person control me and expect happiness out of that either, because another person creating your happiness will always do it incorrectly. I realized only I can make myself happy, and I can control it. Trying to control others pushes them away. And I realized that, when people have politics that shaped from cowardice and racism,  I could help them, but it's difficult, and honestly? They're not very good people, so why am I trying?
In short, I found my self-esteem. I went through an "I don't give a crap" phase on Facebook where I posted whatever I wanted and would tell people who criticized me, "I don't care" and I'd slap them on my restricted list. I used to be scared to use the restricted list, and then I realized, they don't deserve my thoughts on social media. And truly, I still don't care if they want to tell me to not post what I'm posting. They don't control my sense of self. And their trying to control me is them being who I used to be. They're miserable. Control freaks. Why would I want to let them that deep into my life?
And yes, I've lost friendships on Facebook because they hate my politics so violently. I've even been blocked a few times for supporting gay rights, supporting freedom of religion for Muslims in America, supporting being honest, and campaigning against racism (and I don't miss their racket, trust me).
A lot of the time, I'm relieved, too.

But, I realized I don't need to post my politics to believe in them and for them to be strong. I'm a registered voter, and that's all I need. I don't owe anyone an explanation if I find their politics repulsive and I make the choice to unfriend them, and the response from their friends who want to start drama.
Since I've been in recovery from depression (which I could fall off the wagon from at any moment if I'm not careful, knock on wood), I've realized if people I care about don't notice me or care about me, they're not very nice or good people worth my feelings. Why should I pursue their friendships? What a waste of time! Nowadays, I like myself, I like my friends, my friends check in on me (it's no longer a one-sided relationship), and that's all I need.
Wow, what a relief.
Has it been difficult to not post politics that are close to my heart, like supporting the Syrian Refugees plight to safety? Initially, and it will probably be difficult later. And the glee of seeing certain political candidates for President bow out of the race (OMG, OMG, OMG!). But I have people I can talk about that with over Direct Message (and share my Schadenfreude glee). It was really difficult when Obama finally agreed to executive action of guns, too. I can still like political memes and links, I can comment on them, too. But I don't need to argue with people or cause a fight by posting them to my wall.
I wanted a cause to stand for... because I was lonely... and trying to fill my time with something I was passionate about.
These days, I like myself, which changes my perspective on expressing myself and how I do it. I don't need other people to confirm that for me. These days, I don't need anyone else to tell me I'm a good person worth hanging out with and my opinions are important. I want to be the friend that does that for other people. Somewhere along the line in my treatment, I started telling myself those things to myself. And guess what? I don't care if someone doesn't like me anymore. Good riddance. If you don't like me, you probably have something wrong with you anyway, LOL! And I don't need to post politics on my Facebook for people to notice me and want to talk to me, either. If you don't find me a good enough person or interesting enough to pursue my attention, why would I waste my time with you? I make a damn good friend.

And you know what? I think I'll keep up not posting politics on my page for a while. I kind of like what's happened.