Thursday, December 26, 2013

Calling All Fans, Authors, and Those Of The Booky Wook World: We Need YOU!

On Christmas, my treasured friend and the talented author as well as artist, Kayden McLeod informed all of us that Yvette Matthews Lowe of Siren Reviews, lost her home and Christmas due to a fire. Yvette, her husband, and seven children lost everything but their lives. Anyone who has ever been through the devastation of a house fire, let alone one at Christmas, knows the extreme loss. I cannot even fathom it. I cannot fathom losing the things that most of us take for granted until they're gone.

          Yvette is a reviewer, what is that? Reviewers to all us authors, especially those of us who are "Indie", are dependent on reviewers and their websites and blogs. A reviewer gets books every day and sits and reads and then has to give a book a review. Sounds easy, doesn't it. Well picture having to read hoards of books in a time frame whether they're good or not then write reviews plus upload those to all your websites and online media outlets. A book reviewer isn't just someone who says, "Ooo this was a great read. You'll enjoy it. Two thumbs up!" A good book reviewer gives a well trained eye over a book and gives body to their review. It's a lot like a newspaper reporter's job. Each review has to have substance, flair, and finesse. Yvette does that with each and every review that she gives.

              We've all spent and I know most of us have donated to causes for the holidays until we're blue in the face from it but I am asking as an author, mother, and human being to please just find it in your heart to help Yvette's family during this excruciating time. Look at your children and think how you'd explain that they've lost everything-including everything that Santa had for them is gone. I can't go there let alone face having to look at wet soot and burned pieces that were once pictures and family treasures that meant nothing to no one but my own little family. Right now the Red Cross is doing their part, but we all know that they can only do so much. I know that if we all get together we can do a bit more. We may not can replace everything but we can at least help this family. Yvette is part of our world my author friends and those in the book industry. So I am going to copy and paste how YOU can help! Yvette also lost her beloved book collection and if any of my author friends and followers would like to send her some books or maybe a gift card from Amazon or Barnes and Noble that would be well appreciated. Let's help one of our own folks!

                       Should you donate $5.00 US or more you, the lucky donor will receive a free book from Kayden McLeod, myself, and any title from Lady Bee Publishing.

Today, I have compiled all of the information for donations to Yvette Mathews- Lowe and her family. On Christmas morning, the family’s home burned down. For the next three days, they have somewhere to stay, provided by the Red Cross.
We are trying to raise funds and collect donations of clothes, toys, books, games and food for the Lowe family during these trying times. Anything you can afford to ...give is greatly appreciated.
Anyone who donates $5.00 or more will receive e-books of their choice from Kayden McLeod, Nikki Noffsinger and Lady Bee Publishing. Please contact Kayden McLeod once you have confirmed a donation at:

Yvette’s Paypal address:
Address for physical donations: PO Box 102 Mountain City TN 37683

Clothes sizes and ages:
Abby (Girl)
Age: 8 months old
Clothes size: 6/9 months

Shawn (boy)
Age: 3 y/o
Clothes size: 4T (boy)

Ty (boy)
Age: 5 y/o
Clothes size: 6T (boy)

Paige (girl)
Age: 8 y/o
Clothes size: 12/14

Curtis (boy)
Age: 12 y/o
Clothes size: 30/30- adult med shirt

Tristan (boy)
Age: 16 y/o
Clothes size: 30/32--adult med shirt

Clothes size: XL shirt and 16/18 pants


                                                Please find it in your heart to help

                                      this family!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

A Day In My Life As A Writer: Your Questions Answered Straight From The Padded Cell

For some reason I find myself wanting to start this blog as if I were starring in some Bela Lugosi movie where I stand in a black cape with that stare and say, "Children of the night, what beautiful music they make," but you would probably be expecting that right? One of the most common questions I have been asked recently has been, "What are your days like?" and "What's it like, to be a published author?" Well.....

                    My day usually starts with the alarm clock going off at seven in the morning. I AM NOT A MORNING PERSON AT ALL! I am not nor have I ever been one of those people that gets up singing, "O' what a beautiful morning, O' what a beautiful day..." as if I were cast from Oklahoma. No, it's more like a zombie shuffle and I speak in grunts and growls. I wake my son up for school and for the next twenty minutes I'm trying not to give into the temptation to put him in a box and ship him to Timbuktu, but I kinda like the little guy. I get him dressed and after the great cereal debate, I get him fed then it is off to school. Having a child with ADHD is not easy, and I only am disclosing my son's condition because so many kids are misdiagnosed and immediately put on medication. In my son's case, he has a combined form where he can be really distracted and full of rocket fuel or he can be unfocused and sluggish. The fact that it affects his sleep patterns is a factor that made it necessary to put him on medication. However, there is no "magic pill" with ADHD, it's an every day routine and reminding of boundaries along with the medicine. Okay there's my one plug for ADHD Awareness. He's really a spectacular child and there are sometimes when he inspires different characters. In "Cursed Awakening", Nyx's brothers, Bodhi and Xander were both inspired by my son's vibrant life force and his humor.

                      Next, I come home and I try to go through all my E-Mail (yes, I do read all the stuff you guys send me), social network messages and updates, and then I try to get around to my blogs before heading off for a few extra hours of sleep. Again, I am not a morning person. By the time noon comes around, I'm back online and usually writing. When school is out, I am in mommy mode with my son, my daughter, and our newest addition to our little family, my grand baby Zoey Rae. So in the midst of kids and trying get supper together, I'm simply keeping an eye on my social networks and E-Mail. When the children are going full tilt, even my big strong vampires are hiding. It's not until the late night when I am once again immersed in my writing. Then when the hubby comes home from work, I am back to June Cleaver mode (okay I've never been close to being June Cleaver in my life, but in my own warped mind, it sounded good). That's pretty much how every day goes unless my son is out of school. Then writing is strictly at night when he's asleep. Are you a writer? What's your day like? I can't be the only one who writes to a crazy schedule, or am I?

                        What is it like to be a published author? Well, it's pretty awesome! Having someone or a publishing company to look at a manuscript you've put so much work into and to have them say, "We'd like to contract this book for our company" is like hearing that you've picked the right door and there is a fabulous prize behind it. However, as wonderful as it is; it is still A LOT OF WORK! Anyone who is a writer whether they are indie or a well known author will most likely tell anyone that it is work even if you have a publisher that spends all sorts of money on live book tours and promotions. I will also tell you that it's like finding a unicorn, when an author is immediately found and their book is shot into the stratosphere of fame and success. Many authors have had to pay their dues and work. One of my favorite authors, Sherrilyn Kenyon, has said in many interviews that she went through a lot of rejections before her first book was ever picked up and printed.
              It is a lot like being Thomas Edison: you have to go through a lot of trial and error to get that one glass bulb to illuminate and shine. Some can take it and some crumble after the first few rejections. If you are serious about writing then you have to eat, sleep, and breathe the need to write. Being a writer can come naturally to a lot of people but if there is no drive or work ethic combined with too much ego, then forget it! It's not for you. I'm still learning to hone my craft and natural talent. I try to glean as much information and tips that I can from the folks at my publishing house and other authors. If I get a bad critique, I take that as a building block of learning and put it to use. I am very humble and always hungry for ways to better myself as an author and as a story teller.

                    What am I like as a person? I am really down to earth, open minded, and I have a warped sense of humor most of the time. I write about my creatures of the night but you'll never find me drinking blood out of a goblet. You will catch me drinking iced tea, Coca Cola, or coffee. If I were stranded on a deserted island I would most definitely have to have a few books, a notebook and pen, guacamole and chips, and an I-pod that played all my favorite kinds of music and artists. If there were a movie being made about my life, I would choose Melissa McCarthy to play me because the woman is hilarious and I like to think that even through the rougher parts of my life, she'd be able to find the humor in it like I try to do in most situations. Although, she'd probably have to use a slight southern accent. I embrace my whack-a-doo-ness and I proudly let my freak flag fly!

                        So enough about me, tell me about you. Are you a writer? Have you had any books published? If a movie were being made about your life, who would you cast to play you? Don't be afraid, the visiting hours here in my padded cell run pretty late so cop a squat in your favorite hug me jacket and let's chat!