Friday, 12 December 2014

Year end is coming

It’s December and we all know what that means besides presents, parties and cold weather. I am talking about the time of year when we start reflecting. Looking back on life in general and this year in particular is always interesting.

I tend to be a pretty reflective person to begin with (and no I do not mean I am mirrored) but I think a lot. I wonder what if, who was, why did, when did, how is that and so on. So the end of the year is just a chance for me to do it without everyone talking about how OCD I am or telling me that I hold onto things for too long and to let it go. (did anyone else just hear a Disney song in their heads or was that just me?)

My life has taken a total detour from where I was just last year. It’s crazy to think about all the positive changes. But even beyond the book and the store and all the other things I’ve talked about before there is a new revelation for me. I have always had a bad temper, we’re talking throwing-things-tears-flying-screaming-mad kind of temper and it has been over a year since I lost it. And while I am still an emotional basket case I do find myself much more even keeled. Less off balance.

I always worried about how I would react to turning forty. I was positive that I wouldn’t react well and would be a mess for the entire year. I’ve seen how others react both in person and on television and I knew I would be the type to overreact. BUT I didn’t. Turning forty has been great. I feel better, more hopeful, happier than I have in a long time.

I am going to leave this (admittedly short) post on a happy note and say goodnight, may you all look for the positives in your own lives and find what means everything to you

Tuesday, 2 December 2014

I'm Baaaack!

So wow. November sped by crazy fast. I took part in NaNoWriMo which stands for National Novel Writing Month. It’s an online initiative that prompts authors to set a goal and write a 50,000 word rough draft of a novel by the end of the month.

I have never written that way before. It was very different from my usual read-reread-edit-reread-edit-repeat, as I write, style. Instead it’s like you are vomiting words onto the page directly from your soul, just get the words down on paper (or keyboard as the case may be). To give you an idea at 50000 words I have written (single spaced, 11 point font, calibri) 104 pages. It works out to for the month of November writing at least 1500 words a day (4 pages), no weekends off counting every single day in the month. Which any writer will tell you is a lot.

I don’t know if anything I wrote even made any sense, if the plotline is lost or characters likeable. I know nothing beside that I did it. It was incredibly questionable for quite some time (with four days left to go I was only at 37,000 words) but then the universe stepped in. I lost my television. Yes, it died a horrendous but sudden death. No television for me. So with way less distractions I focussed and got it done. 50,263 words at the end of November. The story isn’t done yet – and by that I mean the rough draft isn’t done yet I’m only about 2/3 of the way through my planned plotline. So I still have a lot of work to do. But I am rather proud of myself (self-congratulatory pat on the back now) for even completing the exercise.

As the month sped along I also had a lot of things in my mundane life fall to pieces (which I am still trying to glue back together in some semblance of normalcy) Overall my month away from the blog was a wild ride.

Supernaturally Yours is out and available and I can tell you there is nothing like the feeling of seeing your book on a kobo, in proper book format, with your name at the top, looking like a real live book! I still haven’t come down from that high. Readers have been telling me how much they love the character and the story and asking if I am doing another novel set in that world. I’ve even had to give my first autograph (a moment that threw me for a total loop) and the poor lady got a signature that isn’t legible since I was nervous shaking so much.

I talked to my brother the other night (we don’t talk often which really sucks since we were so close at one point in time, as teenagers and young adults (we were roommates after we moved out of home) and partied together a lot being only 16 months apart made our relationship different from most siblings) – but distance makes it hard and I am as guilty as him of letting the relationship slide) but anyways I digress. I was talking to him and telling him about my crazy author month and he said something that only someone who grew up with me so close could say.

He said, “You did it. This is what you always dreamed about.”

Then he told me to suck it up and get ready to sign autographs, which is also something
only someone who was as close could say.

We lost our mother ten years ago. She and I were also very close, she knew my dreams, my aspirations, she KNEW me as much as my big brother does. I would like to think that if she was still around that those words are what she would have said to me.

So enough of the mushy stuff, I’m sitting in a coffee shop with tears running down my cheeks as I think about what Mom would have said and now people are starting to look at me funny.

Talking to my brother brought a lot of things home for me. Understand my brother is a tough, no nonsense kind of guy. You know the type, black belt, MMA watching tough guy who hasn’t read a book since high school.

So he tells me that he bought my “damn book” and proceeds to yell at me for making him read “zombie porn.”

I laughed and told him it wasn’t porn that it was romance.

He ignored me and continued. “And the worst of it is every word, including thrusting and moaning is said, inside my head, in your voice!” I nearly peed myself laughing at that one. I really never expected him to read it so even the fact that he is trying is enough to make me happy.

So here I am adjusting to life. Adjusting to being able to honestly call myself an author (even though it’s still hard). Adjusting to being myself. I finally feel, at forty, like I am finding myself. I’ve done so much soul searching in the last year that I hardly recognize the person I am. I’m a lot more grounded, more stable, less of an emotional basket case, I’m still me, I’m just me2.0, a better version. And I am happy with the me I’ve become.

Friday, 7 November 2014

Let's go Cray-Cray!


So much has happened since I last wrote a blog entry. It has been a completely crazy couple of weeks. Last Friday Supernaturally Yours went live. It is available for ebook (epub, pdf, kindle formats) at this point. It will be available (fingers crossed) in print in February 2016. I'll include the links at the end of the post (just in case you haven't had a chance to get your copy yet) Also it will be available on kobo soon, just waiting for them to do their thing.

I had the most surreal day of my life the day it came out. First going to Amazon.ca and seeing my name, my book, my baby there available for the world was an insane moment. Then I went out for breakfast (I have a usual gang of friends that meets every friday for breakfast) and they cheered as I came in. They had also decorated the table and gifted me with many penises (or maybe it's penii ??) Why penis's you ask? Well that is a very long story, so let's leave it at my friends are awesome and let you use your imagination. If you ask nicely I might tell the story...

I fully admit to googling myself (how corny but I couldn't resist) when I got to the store that day, and the entire first page of results were real - even some I didn't know about. Again totally surreal moment.

After work being it was halloween the store I run hosted a huge Be-Witching Ball, which I organized and ran. So I tore around decorating and getting ready and making sure everyone had a blast and that things ran smoothly. It was cray-cray. The main event (besides drinking, dancing and hanging with friends) was an act we brought in for the night. I got to watch a woman sew her lips shut and skewer herself, where she added fruit to the ends. She looked like a weird fruit kabob. Again just adding to the nuts night and day.

Finally I went to bed and woke up the next morning to realize it was all true. It all happened. It wasn't some dream.

I also decided to take part in NaNoWriMo (if you're a writer this is a pretty neat initiative you should google it when you are googling yourself) For the uninitiated Nanowrimo is short for National Novel Writing Month. Basically setting a goal and writing like mad for the month to reach 50,000 words by the end of November. So while this is going on I don't anticipate posting a lot on here (I have enough words to write as it is)

Even now I still feel odd, like I am in some alternate reality. This hasn't sunk in. Try to understand up until the novel came out it was all an exercise. The bottom could fall out at any time. I honestly didn't think much past the "get the editing done and keep going" phase. It wasn't real. Now it is. Real. Like really real. And totally cray-cray.

I'm gonna sign off now I have to write at least 1500 words today - I'll post again in December (if I have any fingertips or brains left)

Here's the links I promised you:

http://musapublishing.com/index.php?main_page=advanced_search_result&search_in_description=1&zenid=98ba3089fbb1275c59d249fe0f4cc0a6&keyword=gloria+bishop

http://www.amazon.ca/Supernaturally-Yours-Gloria-C-Bishop-ebook/dp/B00P2KL2OG/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1415378965&sr=8-1&keywords=gloria+bishop

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23501845-supernaturally-yours?from_search=true



Thursday, 23 October 2014

A post about nothing

This morning I sat in a coffee shop, a bit of a hole in the wall, bohemian place. The whirring sounds of the cappuccino maker and conversations of passersby’s combining with the soft voice on the sound system drifts over my ears. The floors are worn in a path that leads to the counter that is manned by a dreadlocked woman whose smile is infectious. I love this place. If I sit in the front I can watch as life goes by in an unending stream of traffic while I sit and enjoy the moment. If I sit in the back the windows overlook the river where I can see the changing colours of fall sliding along in a peaceful cornucopia of breath. Evens its name Slave to the Grind takes imagery and thrusts it into the mind.

So this morning I sit and enjoy my chai tea, the same as every other morning. Breathing and prepping myself for the day. I started coming here regularly as a way to force myself to write. I sit wrapped in the warmth of my favorite haunt and type away on my baby laptop. Inspiration finds me and makes me its bitch.

I have set a rather lofty goal of trying to write one thousand words a day. Most writers say to write three hundred and fifty, so perhaps I am being an over achiever. For those not in the know, three hundred fifty words is approximately a page. So a thousand is a lot and so far I’ve maintained that. I’m not kidding myself if I can’t make it well than I won’t beat myself up on it. But I like having a goal – an end point. And honestly usually when I start (especially when I am mid story) the words flow and I can easily end up doing twice that many.

But there are some days, especially coming up in the foul weather of south western Ontario where writing is like pulling teeth. Each word is a struggle. Or where the story goes sideways and I just can’t write it anymore. I have a novel that is in process, sitting at thirty thousand words (about half way done) and I’ve lost all my get up and go about the story, the characters, everything. I’ve got another one, where at ten thousand words I realized there was no way it could be used at all. Both of those I’ve set aside and hope to come back to at some point. For now I file them away and keep going.

I’ve got just over a week until my release date. It’s really getting close now, close and crazy and scary and exciting and pride filling and utterly terrifying. I’m holding it together barely suppressing my emotions but holding it together none the less. The passage of time seems like a paradox, at points going so slowly that things are NEVER going to happen, then whizzing by in hardly noticed impressions. I know I’m regurgitating what a lot of science fiction shows talk about, but I feel right now like I am stuck in warp drive.

I know I’ve talked before about the busyness of life and this month is no exception. I am organizing a huge Halloween bash, running the store, writing, releasing a book, having my daughter’s birthday, having to attend four other major functions and trying to breath. It’s a crazy month. So I apologize if my brain isn’t working the way I would hope it would normally.
Today’s nonsensical post is about nothing. I am going to include a poem, which I normally wouldn’t – this isn’t the forum for poetry but I wrote this the other day when Mr. Gloria asked me what it felt like to write a novel. I also in no way claim to be a poet but I was feeling it at that moment. So here it is, feel free to ignore it or read it your choice.

That’s it for today. Wish me luck as I progress through this week and try to hold my shit together. (and just so you know this post is sitting at 691 words – so I am not done for the day)

Birthing A Novel

Hour by hour, minute by minute
carving little pieces of my soul
to serve on a plate for the public to mock
Days spent in little coffee shops, ignoring family and friends,
Surrounding myself instead with my characters,
hurting when they hurt, crying when they cry,
losing time, losing sleep as the world I engross myself in takes over.
Monopolizing my time, my energy, my every thought.
staring out windows agonizing over what they would do and the choices they must make.
Hands constantly poised over keyboard waiting for the words to come.
Hoping, praying for inspiration.
So Why?
Why do it?
Why not just ignore the voices in my head begging to be let out?
Why, because the call is too strong.
I write or I am not.
I am what I am, I cannot pretend to be something else.
I cannot lose myself in the world of the mundane.
I will become something I can’t be
The story begs to be told.
I must endeavour to give it the justice it deserves.
I am a slave to my muse, to the creative juices within myself.
I follow because I have no choice.

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Oh my Gawd!

Today is a beautiful fall day and I am sitting in my favourite hole in the wall coffee shop, enjoying a tea. I do love the smell of coffee, it evokes such positive, warm, feelings, but I’ll be honest when I say I cannot stand the taste of the stuff. Makes me want to vomit – no matter how much milk and sugar I add. So I stick to my tea and pretend I am sophisticated, AKA adult, enough to drink a cup of Joe. I watch as the leaves change colours and while I love the look of this season, I hate knowing that winter is merely minutes away. I fully admit to being a summer girl, basking in the sun, never cold just breathing. But the wheel of time moves on whether I wish it to or not.

As October speeds along, things for me are just getting more and more real. Only seventeen days until the official release of Supernaturally Yours. (Which by the way is available for preorder in eBook format on www.musapublishing.com – here’s the direct link . My nerves are a little ruined; I am still in a total state of shock.

I was doing up posters for the novel when I thought I’d better put a web address on them, so I faithfully went to my publishers website (just to make sure I had typed it in right) and while there I thought “What the hell, let’s put my name in the search bar.” Just for (as my mother used to say) ‘shits and giggles’ and lo to my surprise the cover pops up. Along with my blurb, excerpt and link to the book trailer. There was also a little red button for “buy now”. I nearly peed my pants. Quite honestly I screeched (and for those of you who know me, know I NEVER screech). It was an honest “Oh my god.” Moment. (which I said at least four times – each progressively screechier. There it was. My book. My love, my soul, my brain child, bane of my existence, my focus for the last two years. RIGHT THERE! I don’t think I will ever have a moment like that again in my life. I immediately called Mr. Gloria at work (pulling him from a meeting – but OH MY GOD!!) I screeched at him and freaked out a bit. Okay a lot. But it’s all new for me, I’m allowed. I am trying to find the words to express my emotions in that moment. Overwhelming happiness, disbelief, pride, fear, anxiety and joy all rolled up into a big old ball of “oh, my GAWD!”

I guess I am still in that stage of being unable to believe it is happening. I keep expecting the publisher to turn around and go “oops, sorry. We made a mistake.” Or “Bazinga! Fooled ya!” Not that I don’t think Supernaturally Yours is a great book, I do. It’s just this shit doesn’t happen to me.

Although I seem to be the only one with these secret doubts hiding inside me. I was talking to Mr. Gloria about it and he says. “I’ve been waiting for this moment for a long time.” When I asked him what he meant by that he clarified, that he’d always known he would see my work published somewhere. From the time he read the first poem I ever shared with him he saw something in me that would be more. He said that he knew how special I was and that the world would discover it as soon as I let them see it, instead of hiding the real me behind a mask of normalcy. - As if he wasn’t sweet enough without all the honeyed words, then he has to go and say things that almost make me cry. Bastard. But a really great bastard nonetheless.

I was kinda shocked by his admission, for a few reasons. First, I never saw anything special in me, I am just me. Second, that the bugger has known I could do so much more, and in the twenty years we’ve been together he never told me to get off my ass and do it. Third, that he could have such faith in me is truly humbling.

So I sit in my coffee shop, almost drinking coffee and going over all the ways my life has changed. Wait that’s not right my life hasn’t changed, I have. I am learning to accept me and love myself and believe in myself and maybe that is where the difference is. I like the person I am, a year or two ago I would have hidden from myself, behind a wall of everyday mom, instead of embracing the wookie wearing scooter riding freak that I am. I would never have believed that I deserved any of this. The fact that the world will soon be able to read my work (which is like reading inside my brain, my mind, my soul) is terrifying to me but I’m not afraid of it. Sounds like a weird sentiment, but I’m terrified of putting myself out there to be ridiculed, to be thought of as ‘less than’ but I am also not afraid. I know this is the path I am meant to take, the one I have to take. This is where I was meant to be. I only shake my head at how long it took me to get here.

Friday, 26 September 2014

Back to reality.

So I’ve been struggling with a few things, which is one of many reasons why my online presence has been absent. First my mundane life (the one I live every day instead of the fantasy life, writing and being super creative 24-7) has been crazy.

I own a shop, a small shop but mine nonetheless and I have been crazily trying to keep up with the day to day (and playing catch up from vacation). Which, added to the decision to create a whole butt ton of products myself, has left me a wee bit tired, overwhelmed and frankly just a wee bit cranky. I tend to be a touch obsessive and want everything to be perfect, professional and DONE. When I think of an idea there is no putting it off – I want it now. Instant gratification girl right here.

So I come up with this brilliant idea to make incense (only 21 scents, no big deal) then I think, while I am at it why don’t I make a bath salts and a smudge spray (involving a sage infusion which takes a lot of time and energy), oh and rose water would go nicely along with that, and if I am making all that I may as well make Florida water and abramelin oil, and four thieves vinegar too. So what started as a “let’s do a couple of fun things” has exploded into a massive overwhelming undertaking. Please don’t misunderstand, I love doing all this – it’s just my eyes are bigger than my proverbial tummy. I am getting it all done- it’s just slightly boggling.

My vacation in Spain was great, also overwhelming and not what I expected. The views were spectacular, there were surreal moments interspersed with lows and highs so extreme they left me off kilter. Sometimes things don’t happen the way I think they should and I get let down easily. My feelings have always been my downfall, I can’t help but be the person who takes things personally and gets hurt regularly by things no one thinks will hurt. Mr. Gloria always warns me about wearing my heart on my sleeve and how he doesn’t like to see me disappointed. I try to be a duck (nothing sticks to a duck – everything just slides off its back) but I’m not. Anyways my vacation was exciting and everything – just not what I thought.

Although on a side note – the apartment we stayed at had a five piece bathroom (with a bidet and all) now I’ve seen these bidet things on television and heard about them but never had the opportunity to -ahem -test one out. So while I had one residing in the same space as me I thought, “what the hell – let’s give it a whirl.” Well, ladies let me tell you. It was not at all what I expected.

I have thought a lot about the experience and come to one conclusion – I am not high class enough to enjoy a bidet. The water temperature left lots to be desired, that and the spray wasn’t forceful enough to reach the bits it was supposed to be reaching, which left me splashing around like a child in an incredibly weird wading pool. But more than anything the awkward, demeaning and potentially dangerous position one needs to contort oneself into, in order to perch on the torturous device left me cringing. And incredibly thankful that I had preemptively locked the door so Mr. Gloria did not walk in on that fabulous view. Now that I have allowed you a glimpse inside my weird and odd bathroom escapades I will return to the topic on hand…what was I saying again? Hold on while I read the beginning and remember what I was talking about….

Right, that’s it.

So vacation wasn’t what I thought, and in my everyday life I’ve been incredibly busy. I also have been working away on some new stuff – finished my initial draft of a novella I hope to have edited and ready to send off to publishers soon. I've been plotting away, getting to know my next main character, who I think is pretty fabulous. I received the cover art for Supernaturally Yours (which I am super excited about by the way). Thing 1 started grade 12 and Thing 2 is now a high schooler. My babies are growing so big and old and mature that it scares me. These are some of the things I have been struggling to balance. I know I am not the only one who has issues finding harmony between family and work and passions. It has been quite a journey for me to learn how to do just that.

I also struggle with self-confidence (a lot) it’s one of the reasons it took me so long to actually send something I wrote to a publisher (or even let anyone including my besties or Mr. Gloria read my words.) I mean for God’s sake I just turned 40, who in their right mind starts a career path like 'writer' at this ripe age? I even have problems calling myself a writer or God forbid an Author. An author is someone like Katie Macalister, like Patrick Rothfuss, Charlaine Harris. These amazing creatures who can string together words like popcorn while sitting on the pedestals I thrust them on. It isn’t me, awkward, uneven, plain old me. I am not that person, and being able to see myself that way is a real trial. It doesn't happen easily. The past month has been a real trial with, and on, my esteem, believing that I am good enough, that I deserve this is a daily struggle that I encounter. I try so hard to not be down on myself, to believe, but it is difficult.

The publisher has delayed Supernaturally Yours publication date by two weeks. Not a big deal I know (in my head I know) but my emotions immediately went to the “What did I do wrong?” “I’m not good enough.” “This is all a joke, I’m gonna wake up tomorrow and find it never happened.” Place. It took a lot of internal self-boosting talk and listening to Mr. Gloria for me to put those thoughts aside and keep going.

So I’ve avoided posting, trying to think happy and be happy and post happy and most of all trying to be gentle with myself. Finally I couldn’t ignore it any longer I had to blog. SO here I am, emotionally naked, letting you all know what I can’t hide from. I’m not looking for pity (I can give plenty of that to myself) but rather just wanted to show you all I am human. I also wanted to explain my absence so that no one thought I was ignoring them.

Wow reading this blog back makes me sound right certifiable – I swear I’m not. I get down, and today (this month) has been a down time. I will survive, and will perk up by the next time I write.

An incredibly long post and for that I apologize and hope everyone can forgive my blabbering on. I promise next one will be happier. To ask for forgiveness I will include a couple of pictures of me in Mijas Pueblo and Ronda in Spain. As I said, unreal views and unbelievable moments. That’s what I need to hold onto rather than the low points.



Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Cover Reveal!!


I am back from Spain and am desperately trying to get everything all caught up and back in order - so unfortunately I do not have a post for you today - but I didn't want to make you wait any longer so here is the artwork for Supernaturally Yours, to be released October 17th 2014.


And for those who have been wondering - here's the blurb:

Anna is your average small town girl, she works at a bookstore, likes to cook, she is quiet, klutzy, and unassuming -the girl next door.She is also a Supernatural Creature.Becoming a Zombie has brought her nothing but heartache, her family life, her love life even her self-esteem have been shattered as a result of her transformation.After sitting on the side lines of life for too many years trying to not attract attention Anna, with much badgering from her best friend Jenny, decides to take control and begin dating again.Unfortunately her foray into the world of Supernatural Singledom is met with disaster.Thrown into the proverbial arms of the one man who hurt her more than any other, by a psychopath bent on her destruction, Anna is forced to reevaluate her opinion of Nathan.Much to Anna’s surprise the unbelievably hunky officer is not at all what she thought and she has a hard time keeping her hands off his delectable body.Their steamy chemistry is overwhelming as they discover that together they can find out and overcome the fiend who is behind the attempts on Anna’s life.

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Birthday / Summer / Vacation Madness!

You know it's rather funny, whenever I go to begin a post my first thought is to talk about the weather. It's like the original conversation starter will now be known as a "blog starter". What's particularly humorous about me talking about the weather is the fact that I absolutely suck at small talk. Everyone tells me "Just talk about how nice / rainy / snowy / hot it is out. That's a great way to begin a chat." In person I can't do it - I've tried. But then here I am blogging and what do I use to begin things? The local seven day forecast. Weird.

So that being said I will endeavour to not use the weather as a starter. I will vow instead to only speak about my odd family, my odder friends or perhaps the hilarity that is my life....okay, maybe that's not such a great idea. It could get me in trouble. That's not to say I'll never speak about those who surround me because then I'd have very little to say. So, no vows, no promises just me trying to not use the usual (boring) conversational habits.

The past few weeks have been a wee bit crazy. I had a birthday (the big 4-0) which is crazy. In no way, shape, or form do I feel forty. Not that I am upset by the number but rather flabbergasted by it. I know I've earned every one of those years, and am not ashamed by them. I just don't know when they happened.

Anyways, originally I had planned to have a big party with all my friends and family surrounding me. Then, well, finances changed. You know how it is, shit happens and there's nothing we can do but hold on for the ride. So I pulled back on my ideas and decided to have some friends out to the trailer (AKA my summer getaway) for drinks and a campfire. Mr. Gloria gave me a new Kobo Glo, Thing 2 a movie and Thing 1 had previously given me a new book. I was happy with that. (thrilled with the Kobo since it's what I had asked for.)

So on Saturday morning I sat on my deck, reading ("A Discovery of Witches" (on my new Kobo) by Deborah Harkness - a great fantasy series, if you haven't read it I recommend giving it a go.) and relaxing. When all of a sudden my sister L, my sister-in-law J and one of my BF's pull in. Now keep in mind I knew something was up because T (the BF) has been ignoring me for nearly 3 weeks, uanble to talk or make eye contact so when they showed up I wasn't hugely surprised. I may not have known what was going to happen but I knew something was. They load me up (luckily in a dress) and take me to the theater. We saw Les Miserables at The Drayton Theater near Grand Bend, Ontario - a phenominal show. After that we were going out for dinner (or so they told me) and just had to pick up another friend. The surprise was done and I was happy with the theater and friends out for the night. But, that wasn't what was to happen.

We get to the friends place and there is a rather large party for me, including a projector to watch my favorite movies (Rocky Horror Picture show, Veronica Mars and The Princess Bride were on the playbill) We had a barbeque and lots of laughs. This evil scheme was planned by so many friends and Mr. Gloria. (Who by the way I am now concerned about - because my goodness can that boy lie!) I was completely blown away. I really thought the theater was the extent of my surprise but I was wrong. During the party Mr. Gloria pulls up behind me with a brand new scooter. I've always wanted a scooter, mind you I wanted my ass to be a little narrower before planting it on a bike but we can't have everything we want. Mr. Gloria, the sweetest man alive, has been hiding money from me, and planning this party.

I discovered, something I have always suspected but definately had confirmed, that I hate being the center of attention. Everyone was staring at me. I even refused to take my sunglasses off, I don't know if I thought that would let them steal my soul or something equally nefarious but I just couldn't do it. I'm definately a girl who enjoys having a good time, when everyone is chatting and having fun, and NOT looking at me. Don't misunderstand I loved the party, the friends, the food, I just could have done with a little less attention on me specifically.

We laughed, we drank, we watched movies and sang along with them, it was the type of party that I'd always wanted. Although I never could have expected the pinata filled with, umm...adult novelties (some of them even vibrated). And just for future reference to anyone who might be thinking this sounds like a good idea, I wouldn't recommend putting tubes of lube in a pinata and handing someone a baseball bat. It can get messy. Anyhoo....

Now I have this fabulous scooter to toot around town on, a bad ass biker helmet (old school) and a grin on face from ear to ear as I ride around.

That's enough about my birthday madness, let me tell you a little about the book. I've been assigned a new editor (*Hi, Kristin!*) and we are bopping along. First and second round 'line edits' are done. From what she tells me, it looks like we're done all we can do. Now it's again with the waiting game. Soon we should have some cover art to reveal (in the next month or so).

I have finished also my initial draft on a novella and I have sent that on to my Beta readers, and when they are done it will be editing for me. I'm about halfway through a full novel that has stuttered a little in my brain so I have set it aside for a little while to let the ideas metriculate. That's one of the reasons I haven't been as present online as normal, just so crazy busy.

Now that summer is almost over I am taking a bit of a break. Reading, thinking (okay plotting), chillin' and prepping as I head on vacation in (EEK!) four days! And I am nowhere near ready. The whole fam-damily is heading to Spain for two weeks, for my baby sisters wedding. I am the first to admit I am not a very worldly traveller (pretty insular here) and I am a touch nervous. I'm sure I'll be back in September with all sorts of stories about the insanity that is guaranteed to ensue.

With that thought I am going to get going - too much to do and not enough time and I have been rather long winded today. Until I get back - enjoy the rest of your summer!


Here's a picture for you all to laugh at, me on my new scooter,any suggestions on how to avoid helmet head (hair) would be appreciated. Standing beside me is Mr. Gloria (isn't he handsome!)

Friday, 18 July 2014

That was awkward....

I hate feeling awkward. That’s an odd sentence because really who likes feeling awkward? (The hint is in the meaning). For me, it comes in social situations. I never know what to do, or say, how to behave, what are appropriate actions and so on. Socializing is like a mine field: ready to blow me into little pieces at any time.

Before I get to far into this I must take a minute to mention how lucky I am to be surrounded by a group of friends who ignore my ineptitude and make me comfortable. Enough so that I no longer feel like talking to them, or hanging out with them is a “social situation” it’s more like wearing a comfy bathrobe while chatting. Nothing uncomfortable there. And my friends are definitely to thank for that.

For me a social situation is defined as any moment where I have to speak to people I don’t know. Being at work doesn’t count (it’s a specific type of conversation where I know what to expect and how to answer the questions that will come up) so work is safe.
This is how most of my moments of total mortification (AKA social situations) appear:

Me: “Hi.”
Other person: “Hi, how are you?”
Me: “Good. You?”
Other person: “Great. Nice day?”
Me: “Uh huh.”
And then the deafening sound of crickets and air whooshing takes over the room. The silence becomes deadly, and we stare at each other wondering who will break first. Neither of us does, I smile awkwardly: which must come out as more of a grimace because the other person doesn’t smile back. The sweat starts to pool under my arms, my breathing speeds up. I can’t figure out what is appropriate to do or say. I stare at the other person until my eyes begin watering. The other person looks at me unsure why I am sweating, crying and grimacing at them. They then clears their throat in nervous reaction – not knowing if I am about to attack or pass out. With a great amount of unease we both look away. And the moment to connect, to meet someone new, to overcome my fear, is lost.


It feels like public speaking when I am trying to talk to anyone I don’t know (in case you haven’t guessed it public speaking is NOT my forte.) I never know what to say, should I talk about politics? (which I don’t follow) weather? (um…boring) drinking? (Not exactly appropriate with a teenager) sex? (Definitely awkward with a senior citizen or any stranger really). What do I say???
And to make it worse when I get uncomfortable really weird things come out…

Like the time I blurted out:
“My cat just died.”
Or “Gone on any dates yet?” (To a newly married woman.)
Or “I like butter tarts.”
Or “Cute kid. Can’t be yours, right?”


And so on and so forth. I guess I could look at it as a positive – my verbal diarrhea makes not only me cringe but everyone else now feels the same way I do. Uncomfortable. This is a positive to me because while they are tilting their heads in awe, the word bubble above their head saying “Did she really just say that out loud?” I can escape. And that is what I usually do – RUN AWAY!
So if you see me and I say something completely weird, inappropriate or awkward, just smile and nod. And maybe back away slowly – you never know what will happen next.

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Humour in love scenes

Okay so I've run into a conundrum. When I write anything, including romance, I tend to write with humour. Meaning a love scene will have you alternately breathing hot and heavy until you snort your drink out of your nose. I find this most closely resembles real life. You have steamy moments interspersed by moments of pure and honest laughter. Half of romance, to me at least, is being able to laugh with your partner. Being able to connect through laughter brings you closer, and this is essential both inside the bedroom and out. The ability to laugh at ourselves in situations such as the somewhat contorted, and possibly awkward bedroom antics brings a couple together.

So back to my conundrum. I have had a couple of beta readers feel and comment that the humour felt "weird" or "off". When I questioned them, it wasn't the type of humour that was off, it was that they didn't feel laughter belonged in a love scene. I tend to disagree, but am wondering what everyone out there in cyber world thinks.

I do think it needs to find a balance, and can't be all laughter and jokes. But if something funny happens why wouldn't we laugh? Doesn't laughter make the heart fonder? So if we are going for a love scene, a little hahaha can be useful both to break up the steam, and to let the reader know the characters are human.

Let me know what you think! All steam, or let the funny bone out when it comes to love scenes?

Thursday, 19 June 2014

Perspectives

It's funny, the other day I was talking to a new friend. For simplicity lets call this friend Mary and her hubby John. The conversation went something like this:

Mary - "You know Gloria, John thinks you don't like him."
Me - "What? Why would he think that?"
Mary - "He says you never talk to him."
Me - "Really! And here I thought I was doing so much better!"

Although I may write about conversing with the opposite sex I'm not great at doing it for myself. I can count on one hand the number of males I have had a conversation that lasts longer than four sentences. I've always been an incredibly shy person (with strangers - once I get to know you watch out!) but especially with members of the opposite sex and old people (but that's a different phobia entirely).

Some of my friends husbands whom I've known for nearly twenty years, I was a bridesmaid in their wedding and I still haven't had a conversation with the husband on my own. When my girlfriend is there sure - but alone I have no idea what to say. Even my own brother in law, if I call and my sister isn't home I tend to hang up and not say more than ten words. I don't know why. I have no idea what to say. And my innate shyness comes back with a bang.

So back to the original point. With John, I have been actively forcing myself to talk to him. To be friendly, to be me. I wasn't letting my shyness overcome me: or so I thought.

I explained all this to Mary and how I thought I was doing so great with John and how I felt bad that he thought I hated him. We had a good laugh about it in the end. I was able to put their minds at ease that yes indeed I did like them and was making an effort which would get easier with time.

What it all comes down to is perspective. From my perspective I was doing great and everything was good. Froms Johns perspective I couldn't stand him. Each of our own life experiences dictates how we see things in many situations not just the one I experienced recently. How many times has a text been misinterpreted or an off the wall comment taken wrong?

Perspective is a really interesting thing. I've always wanted to take part in a social experiment that I heard about. It went something like this. You take a group of people and put them in the same restaurant, with the same conversation and food. Then you have each of them seperate and write out what had just happened. You would end up with completely different stories, because each person has their own perspectives and experiences to relate to.


I try to keep in mind perspectives whenever I am writing or even living my life in general. It doesn't always work but I do try. Afterall no one else has been through what I have, nor have I lived in another persons skin. It is too easy to jump to conclusions based on our own perspectives. So take it easy on one another, be understanding, if you think one thing is happening - ASK - don't assume. Give the other person the benefit of doubt and allow them to explain their point of view or what they actually meant.

I know these are great ideas to live by - harder to do in practice. But if we all try, at least a little, the world will become a better place.

Now that I've given that happy little bit of advice I shall sign off. Have a supernatural day!



Tuesday, 17 June 2014

New Business Cards

Just thought I'd share a picture - well two pictures really but who's counting.

I have been working away on the promotional end of things and am still in the midst of that stuff (in case you were wondering at the lack of posts)

I had some business cards made up, (see the attached picture) now some of you might be wondering if I am putting the cart before the horse. Well I did this because as I was talking to people about what was going on and the book, they wanted to "follow" me. So they could know when Supernaturally Yours comes out. After about the forty four hundredth time (okay you got me I'm exaggerating but it felt like that many in my head) of writing out the facebook address and blog website out I decided to get some cards made up.

And here they are!

Friday, 6 June 2014

Positively positive

I don’t know how many of you out there struggle with staying positive. If you’re anything like me the bite of negativity is constantly pecking at your heels. Every week I vow to make this a positive week - to only think positive. But then within an hour I can feel the “what if’s” - that nagging, not so little voice in my head that wants to pick apart either what I’ve done or what someone else has done. Desperately I try to ignore the voice and sometimes I win. However a lot of the time I don’t. Does this make me (or you as the case may be) a bad person? I don’t think so. In my humble opinion it makes us real people. At least we are striving to be positive. We are trying. We may not be perfect but we are willing to admit our faults.

I want to be that person who is always seeing the glass as half full. I want to be the person who is always smiling and carefree. I’m not. Finding myself drawn to the – it could have been better if only… why did that have to happen?...That looks horrendous….Why can’t I be more like….What if I’d done this instead?... Was this the right choice? If you’ve ever had any of these thoughts then you know where I am coming from. Maybe it’s society today, always wanting better, more more more!! But I don’t want to fall back on the blame someone else for the way I am way of thinking neither, which I just consider more of the same.

So, after many years of struggling I decided to write today and see what ideas I can come up with to be closer to the person I want to be. Using my own brain and the wonderful google search I am going to list 10 ideas to help us all become the positive people we want to be.

1. A good friend of mine has an “awesomeness of March” event each year. This year was on facebook and what she wants everyone to do is each day find ONE thing that made it an awesome day, then post it on the wall so everyone else can see. This really allowed me to look at what makes a day good and what makes it bad.

2. From the dove campaign for real beauty I derived the idea to post notes around my house –on my fridge, on the mirror, on my computer screen etc. These notes are small reminders as simple as “Smile” “It’s a good day” “You make the choice” etc.

3. Listen to more positive music. I find when I listen to sad or depressing music I get the same way so the more upbeat the music the more upbeat I feel. That doesn’t mean I have to constantly listen to pop stuff. There is plenty of happier music in all genres.

4. Meditate. Take that five minutes whenever things are starting to go downhill and breathe. Focus on whatever you hold sacred and allow it to fill you with joy and peace.

5. Intentional manifestation. This goes along with the lines of meditation. But focus yourself on what you want to achieve – in this case the positive attitude and everyday allow yourself to see what will happen to you when you make the changes. Eventually you begin to live the change that before you were only thinking about.

6. Cleanse. Now most of you understand that I mean more than just showering on a daily basis, however I will explain. You can cleanse your space using smudging to remove negativity from your surroundings. Or using black tourmaline as a stone is fabulous to carry with you and whenever you feel the negative come up send it into the stone.

7. One suggestion that I found during my google search is not one I would have previously thought about but it said to avoid eating meat. The explanation is that there is always a negative connotation around the eating of animals, they had to die so you could eat right? So more fruits and vegetables and taking good care of yourself is another way to get on the train of positive attitude.

8. Avoid surrounding yourself with negative people. This one can be quite difficult, we don’t always get to choose who surrounds us, either at work or in our families. But we can choose to direct the conversations as much as possible to positive things. Or refuse to participate in negative talk, which if these people want to keep talking they will often talk about what is getting a response. We have the choice, the ability, to help other people with this option, because we are ridding negativity from more than ourselves. This step to me will be the hardest. Because I don’t often feel like I can direct a conversation, and I am just about the farthest thing from confrontational as you can get (terrified of it as a matter of fact and I worry that by directing the conversation someone might confront me) but I am going to try.

9. Stay in the present. Try to become conscious of the present moment rather than always thinking about something.
You are always living in present, but sometimes you are so involved in your thinking that you are projecting yourself to the future or the past, therefore you miss the conscious acknowledgement of the present moment.
By choosing to be in the present and not thinking about anything, you will be able to relax and find happiness in where you are now. This will let you rest from your mind and put yourself in into a more positive state of mind.
By staying in the present you will learn to appreciate what you currently have instead of always wanting to be somewhere else or have something you do not possess at this moment.

10. Last but not least. This one is one of the harder ones, for me at least. Disconnect. Turn off facebook, your phone, your ipad, all the trappings of technology. Not for long, just for a small amount. During dinner, connect with the humans surrounding us. While going for a walk, connect with nature and the beauty that we live in. Take that moment to breathe, to talk, to laugh. Don't worry about what you are missing - it will all be there when you get back. I've found facebook can be a hotbed of negativity that it is hard to escape from but take a moment to realize it isn't your negativity - it belongs to someone else. By disconnecting we can separate ourselves easier.

So my final thought for this blog entry will be a quote from “A little book of happiness”

“All of life is a journey; which paths we take, what we look back on, and what we look forward to is up to us. We determine our destination, what kind of road we will take to get there, and how happy we are when we get there”

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Life Lessons at My Age!?!

I've been incredibly busy lately, so I must apologize for not posting sooner. In my other life I also run a retail store - as tourist season kicks in I've been BUSY!! Whew. No excuses intended, I've just been too busy to think. But I promised myself, even put it on my to do list for today to write a blog post. AND check it out, here I am. Go me! Checking stuff off my list. So I'll get on with it.

I've been learning about a couple things these last couple weeks.

My novel is at the editors, I'm still waiting. Trying to be patient and not OCD all over the place. I get how busy life can get (See first paragraph) so I am hardly one to speak but I hate waiting. I'm obsessive about not being tardy in my mundane life. I will arrive up to an hour early "just in case" for appointments, work, all that stuff. Because the thought that something could happen and I would end up arriving behind schedule sets my hair on fire and my mind in a complete panic. Mr. Gloria has been *cough* politely spoken too (okay who am I kidding I've completely lost it on him) for being late to pick me up when he said he would. I try to be understanding, I try to be empathetic. Try. That's the operative word. I'm not. I hate waiting.

So this week has been a real trial for me, waiting. Patiently. Understanding that when the manuscript arrives it does. Me freaking out over it, doesn't help in the least. It certainly doesn't help get it here any quicker. I've been working on other projects in a futile attempt to distract myself, but I keep getting distracted from my distraction with thoughts of the first novel. I also must admit I'd rather the editor took her time rather than rushed the job. So I wait. Biting my tongue, tapping my fingers on the desk, obsessively checking my email, but being as patient as I can.

The second lesson of the week is on letting go. Thing 2, my youngest, is 13 now. Which means "grade-eight-end-of-the-year-trip-of-epic-proportions-to-oh-my-god-Quebec!". (In case you couldn't hear my voice in your head just there - I was channeling my inner teenager and paraphrasing my daughter) She left yesterday morning, on a bus, whisked away. It's not like we haven't been apart before - I am not a clingy mother. She's gone to summer camps, friends places, weekends away and all sorts of events. But I dropped her off. I knew where she was. This is something else entirely. She's growing up, becoming the person she was meant to be. Which is all great and dandy, and I am so proud of her for being the individual she is, it's still scary as shit. What happened to my baby? The little girl whose hair I styled, who looked at me as though I was the best thing in the world. The little girl who danced and sang with me in the living room, who's hand I held when she went in for her heart surgery. The sweetheart who hugged me when my mom died, trying to comfort me. What happened to her?

She's thirteen, which means in September she goes to HIGH SCHOOL! She's thirteen, which according to everyone I talk to, means I have about six months until she turns into a raging ball of angry, hate filled, know it all teeny bopper. Then I will have to wait at least four years until the teen monster dies and she turns back into a human being.

This feels like the beginning of the end. The end of agreeing about music, television, books. If I say the lake is cold, she'll disagree, just to be difficult. The end of her thinking I hung the moon. The end of her being my little girl.

So, I've let her go. She needs the time to be the monster, to hang out with her friends, to crush on boys, to have her heart broken. She needs the time to learn to be the person she will become. I can only hope that I've taught her enough. That Mr. Gloria and I have taught her all that she needs to know, and that she knows we are here for her always. I will let her go, with pain inside me. Knowing any day could be the last before I lose my beautiful, happy go lucky child. And it might be years until I see her again.

But until the day she does disappear into the wild ways of high school, I will enjoy the moments we have.

I've forbidden myself from contacting her - knowing this trip is a right of passage that she deserves. It's definitely within the rules for me to respond to the texts she sends me, of which there have already been several, which makes me smile. The "Good morning mom, I miss you." text from this morning had me tearing up and I of course responded with a smile: until she turns into a monster, I'm a happy mom. She may grow up, but as all mothers say, she'll always be my baby.


Saturday, 10 May 2014

Mom

Tommorow is Mother's Day. For me as the day approaches I find myself getting morose. Sad. Ten years ago we lost our mother after a brief but hard fought battle with cancer. 

I always try to be happy - after all my kids have made me gifts and take me out for dinner but there is always an underlying sense of grief that comes to the forefront. I can't help it. 

I know many other people go through the same thoughts and feelings as these celebratory days approach. To each of you I give a brave smile and a virtual hug. I understand. 

In honour of Mother's Day I thought I would share a short story I wrote last year. It is a "creative nonfiction" meaning it is a story based on events that actually happened.  Unlike most of my writing it is not a romance nor is it a fantasy. 

It is what it is, and I post it here for you. 

The Monarch


I stood waiting with the other bridesmaids as harp music floated gently across the air, everyone was fussing with their hair or pulling on the red dresses we each wore to varying degrees of success.  As the first bridesmaid began her walk I glanced behind me still shocked to see my sister, looking radiant in her quiet agony filled joy.  She wore a white wedding dress that magically turned a pretty girl into a breathtaking vision of ethereal beauty.  Mistakenly I allowed my gaze to touch on her face and she looked directly back at me, tears simultaneously filling our matching eyes, so identical to our Mom’s, I nodded a chin up gesture and with a deep breath I stepped out of the building, staring across the football length field to see the destination – a wooden castle built for the occasion.  

The late September afternoon breeze ruffled the hem of my long dress as I followed the girls making their way towards the tiny blurred crowd in the distance.  Behind me I could hear my son and nephew arguing quietly over the banner they jointly carried in lieu of rings.  I felt the heat of the afternoon sun warming my face, heard the soft murmur of water lapping gently on the shore from the pond to my right. As I marched my way across the freshly cut grass holding tight to the candle lantern that I carried my mind wandered and tears streamed unchecked down my face as memories took hold.

It was only last year that we found out that Mom was sick.  Impossible as it had seemed at the time, she had breast cancer. My Mom, the glue in our family, the artistic, wild child, fun-loving woman was deathly ill.

The best friend who I had lunch out with every week, who sang Janis Joplin while cleaning (loudly and out of tune but still she sang), the woman who drank my friends under the table with her infamous tequila poppers, had cancer.  Impossible.  But it became our reality.  Chemotherapy, radiation, cancelled surgeries, doctors and naturopaths, we tried it all.  

For eight immeasurable months she fought, withering before our eyes, pain and weariness bowing her back like a woman 40 years older than she was, until she couldn’t walk, then still we pushed her in her wheelchair, and still she fought.  Until the end.  

On January 16th of this year we lost the battle.  My Mother whose larger than life shadow I had lived in for so long, who shadow I was happy to stay in, was gone.  My Mom, who everyone knew and loved, whose unique spirit touched all that she met, who I longed to be like, was gone.   No more would I hear her belly deep laugh, talk with her late into the night, get advice from, dress up for Halloween with, smile at and see my own future reflection.  Gone forever.  

She was 46 years old, too young to die that way.  Too young to die at all.  She should have been here; she should have lived long enough to see her grandkids grow old.  That was the expected bonus she got for starting her family at fifteen.  But no – life – fate - the gods - whatever decided to take her from us.  

Her one demand was, and it was a demand not a wish, that Lindsay go ahead with the wedding as planned.  We argued, Lindsay couldn’t fathom a wedding without Mom there and talked about cancelling, postponing or eloping.  But Mom won, as she seemed to win most arguments, she got her way and we all promised to make it the best wedding we could.

For the last nine months we had worked feverishly to achieve the fantasy, “The perfect wedding”.  We built and we ordered, we crafted and we cried.  Our tears were shed in secret – away from each other.  We put on a brave face to one another, which was essential for survival.  Our sorrow was overwhelming but we forced it back, having a common goal.  Get through the wedding then we can grieve.  Life had changed so drastically none of us knew how to deal with it; all we could do was ride the wave and hope that we didn’t drown.  Now the day was here, tomorrow it was time to face reality, to face a life without Mom, to fall apart.

Abruptly I came back to the present, as I approached the no longer blurry faces of the crowd, many whose eyes streamed tears.  Tears of joy and of intense sadness, such a mixture of opposing emotions held the day hostage.  I could read their faces as clearly as they could read my own.  Happy that Lindsay was starting her life with Brian, the boy she had loved since she was fifteen, broken that we had to celebrate without Mom.  

As I passed down the aisle, I focused on what people were wearing to avoid looking at their faces, I was taken aback by the number of people in costume, our medieval theme had been supported by many.  I saw corsets, headpieces, men in tights,and even chainmail.   It felt like I had been transported into the past as I topped the small rise and approached the castle, its draw bridge down and resting in the grass beside Brian and my brothers, who also had tears on their cheeks that they steadfastly ignored. The sun glinted on the edge of the false towers we had painstakingly built and painted to look authentic.

I took my place, studiously evading eye contact – if I pretended I wasn’t crying then everyone else could as well.  I turned and watched as my sister, stunning as she was, made herfinal ascent up the aisle.  Dad held her arm gently, tears shaking his entire body until it was no longer apparent who was supporting whom.  Finally he kissed her cheek and bravely took his lonely seat at the front.

The ceremony blurred for me, words were said, tears were shed, vows given and loud sniffling from the audience was common, as it was at all weddings.

Then just before the exchange of rings, for me, it was as though the world held its breath for one moment that stretched eternally, all sound disappeared and we were held in a moment outside of time.  The officiant stopped speaking and everyone looked up as a monarch butterfly flew in from nowhere.  Its bright orange and black wings flapping majestically, glistening in the sunlight as it flew directly to Dad, after circling his head once the beautiful being then went to my children and nephew whirling around each of them.  After its route there the butterfly rocketed straight to my brothers.  It then approached me, and I found myself knowing without a doubt that this was no normal butterfly. Finally the butterfly flew to Lindsayits bright orange wings framed by the white lace on her gown.  Around each of us the monarch spiraled once, and then with a final joyous sweep past the members of my family it flew off into the distance and was gone.  With clarity inside my mind like I’d never known before my siblings and I met eyes in turn, each of us having experienced the same thing.  As one we silently sighed a single word, “Mom.”

As though that was a signal, time sped back up to normal and everyone began to breathe again, rustling from the crowd invaded.  The ceremony was sealed with a kiss as marriages have been sealed for a millennia and the applause was thunderous and mixed with a plethora of tears.  

I moved down into the chattering crowd of people allowing myself to be swallowed by their noise and taking a breath of their energy as I calmed my warring emotions.  A tap on myshoulder turned me to see my Uncle, his face still damp, evidence that his stoic personality was only a show.

“Gloria, that butterfly, it was your Mom.”  

“I know.” I whispered holding back the tears that still threatened.

“No you don’t understand.” He almost growled at me. “Butterflies are out of season.  All the monarchs migrate.”  I nodded, still confused and a little astounded at his knowledge of the habits of butterflies, but he continued, “They migrated four weeks ago.  That little beastie shouldn’t have been either here or alive, and yet it was.  Your Mom was here.”

Nodding I walked away to stand by the pond as the fading sunlight glistened over its surface like fairies dancing in the wind, allowing the myriad of thoughts to overtake my mind for a few moments.  Finally I gathered myself, returned and mingled with the crowd, my sorrow replaced by a sad peace, knowing Mom had been with us in the only way she could be.  I also knew that anytime I felt alone or sad the monarch would be there – that Mom would be there.




This is a photo of me and my Mom on my wedding day.


Friday, 9 May 2014

Watch out its the FBI

Well, it has been a little while, sorry about that. *grins and ducks head* but life has kept me uberbusy. I've been working away on social media and doing all the weird government stuff. But here I am again. Hello!

A while back we were hosting a family gathering at the 'summer getaway' so my brother, sister, dad and the respective families all came out with me to have a good old fashioned bbq. As they drove in and parked in a semi circle surrounding my trailer, I noticed that everyone drives black suv type vehicles. Keep in mind I'm not a car girl - if it has a hatchback to me that is suvesque. Wow, word creation is on high today. Normally I wouldn't have paid attention to something like this, but on this day everyone arrived together. A string of black cars. Anyways, it looked like the FBI (or some other nefarious government organization) was coming to see me. All these big black vehicles surrounding my little red car.

If anything has ever made me feel like an outcast in my own family it was that moment. The second I looked and went, 'huh.' Am I an alien? or adopted? (if only we weren't spitting images of each other I would wonder that) or maybe I was dropped on my head a lot? It was a "one of these things is not like the others" epiphany. Don't misunderstand, I love my family. I'm just different from them.

Individually we match some bits and bobs, like my little brother (who tops my height by a foot- not that that's hard but it makes him being my 'little' brother sound odd.) and I are both geeks, my kid sister and I like to drink together(that doesn't sound good - how about we like to party together. That's better) My Dad and I, we both like him fixing my car and have the same morbid sense of humour. My big brother and I used to like to hang out (since he moved away not so much) but we both hate the phone so I guess that's why we don't talk very much. My baby sister (yes - there's a lot of us) and I are both into the same movies. My bio Dad and I have the same taste in people. We like and dislike the same type of people. What I am saying is that while we have some stuff in common, others, well night and day are more alike.

I've thought a lot about this. My siblings rile me a lot, and I them. We are very individual individuals. We give each other more crap than enemies, but we also give support. Sometimes silent, sometimes verbal. But always there in one way or another.

I also had a conversation about fitting in with my kid sister, and she told me she feels like the outcast. We all have very dark skin and don't need to wear sunscreen and we look like mirror images of one another. Except her. She burns if the sun even thinks about reflecting on her and while she looks like she's related to us, she doesn't pass as twins like the rest of us do. So she has her own insecurities about fitting in. The same way I do. That opened my eyes that maybe more people are insecure about whether they are 'part' of the group than we know about. I would never have guess that she felt that way, she's always been the center of the action, to me the one that fit in the best.

So even if you are the one green cat tossed in amongst a family of calico's - you can still fit in. You can still be a part of the unit. You may not have a lot in common with one another - but you have a shared history, a conjoined sense of responsibility and love that can not be found anywhere else. No one will understand you like family. At least in my humble experience.

I've thought about trying to fit in better - not dying my hair, or buying a boring black car. I really thought about it. Then I threw that thought away. I wouldn't be me without fire engine red hair and car, without my odd make up and off the wall thoughts and 'gloria' moments. And in my own weird way I do fit in.

So if you see a whole slew of black suv's followed by one lonely little red car. It's not the FBI, its just my family and I'm the one in the red and proud of it.

Thursday, 1 May 2014

Geeks?

Today I was thinking. I know, weird huh. But I had a “hmm…makes you think ….” moment. I was wondering about the changing face of geekdom. Since my next novel is focussing on geeks as the main characters I've had a lot of opportunity to ponder. I may be about to age myself here, but when I was younger being a geek was so NOT cool. Now geeks are on the rise – ha sounds like a movie of the week “The Rise of the Geek” but I digress.

Since Bill Gates made it oh so obvious that being a geek can earn millions, many more people have been flocking the banner. My husband and I have always been geeks, gamers, nerds whatever. We game every week and have for too many years to count. I had a lady in the store tell me that she thinks “it’s so cute that you’re such a geek.” Which made me wonder about the geekiness of today. Todays nerds don’t wear pocket protectors and knee high socks but rather suits or off colour t-shirts.

Think about how things have changed even in how movies portray geeks from the early eighties to now. In 1984, revenge of the nerds came out and you had those geeks to 2010 when the social network comes out. Look at the difference!

Being a geek today is nowhere near the social stigma it was 20 – 10 – hell even 5 years ago. Even the use of the word geek has changed. It used to be that being called a “geek” or “nerd” was synonymous with “loser” Now not so much – it’s a descriptive adjective that is almost as common as “tall” or “short” and not usually intended as demeaning.

It’s becoming apparent that the world is technological, more and more students are going into computer type programs rather than for sports. When I was in school, all the cool kids were on sports teams or going to work in the trades (making them well muscled and therefore so nice to look at) Now it seems like there’s a shift in the scales that balance cool or not. Add to the fact that the nerds of today are nowhere near as nerdy as those in revenge of the nerds, but they are off-colour and different.

I guess that’s what I’m trying to say. Today it seems like we as a society on the whole are more accepting of the differences that are innate in everyone. More open to the possibility that there is more than one way to be cool. Our societal eyes have been opened to the fact that we don’t want to be cookie cutters. All the same. BORING! Bring on the different, the unusual, the strange even sometimes the disturbing. I believe in my heart of hearts that if society continues on this trend of acceptance soon we will all have a great place to live.

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Weekend plans gone awry

Wow, so what a crazy weekend. I had fully intended to spend the vast majority of my weekend writing. Both kids were busy all weekend, the hubby and I had a bit of work to do on Saturday morning but it still left plenty of time to write a blog post and a few thousand words on my work in progress. It's amazing how quickly all my plans went down the drain.

We (Mr. Gloria and I) started out by heading out to open up our summer getaway for the season. Okay who am I kidding, summer getaway makes it sound like I have a spa or resort or cottage. It's really a trailer at a park. I love it. We have a lot facing the forest, right at the edge of the park. This is where we spend most of our weekends in the summer. Relaxing, reading and writing (for me anyways) I find it therapeutic and cleansing to my spirit. The summer season here in Ontario runs from May 1st to October (that is definitely stretching it - but I like to pretend it is summer season for that entire time - I conveniently forget the nights around the campfire so cold I have to wear my winter coat, and the sideways freezing cold rain in may) We take advantage of as much time as possible at the trailer. This past winter was especially rough, with the snow starting in November and staying the whole time. Hell it snowed two weeks ago. I am so ready to get to summer.

So I digress, it isn't a high falutin' summer cottage but it is exactly what I need. We had gone up after this horrendous winter to see how our trailer had faired. No holes, or leaks on the outside (which is always good) but the toilet had cracked, the bathroom sink and the shower was leaking like a sieve. So we spent most of this weekend cleaning up messes and trying to stop leaks. Add to the fact that I was desperate not to use the bathroom until we got home. (There is something intrinsically wrong with public washrooms - but I won't go into my neurosis right now)

We arrived home mid afternoon on Sunday, dirty, tired, frustrated and having to pee like 'Austen Powers' did after being frozen for some 40 years.

Thing 2 had been away at birthday parties all weekend, a movie party on Friday night and Saturday was rock climbing and spa sleep over. A thirteen year old girls dream weekend. She came through the door on crutches. She had jumped off one of the rock climbing apparatus and landed wrong. At first glance everyone thought it was just a sprain or a simple bruise. I looked a bit further and my mothers intuition said we should head to the ER just in case. Seven hours, one xray and two books later we find out she broke three long bones in her foot. Casted up, exhausted and oh so ready to go home at three a.m I think to myself what happened to my relaxing weekend?

I guess the lesson learned from this weekend is that plans go astray. Things; shit happens. Go with the flow. I try to be like a duck - you know nothing sticks to a duck right? Everything just rolls off its back. But I've never been that person. I always stress things out. Some might even say I am a worrier. *clears throat and looks away* However either I am mellowing with age, or I've allowed myself the freedom to know not everything is always going to be under my control. So while my relaxing weekend may have turned out not so relaxing, everyone survived. Everyone will prevail.


Sunday, 13 April 2014

Dreams

A while back Thing 2 asked me a question that kinda confounded me. She asked me, "Mom, how long have you wanted to be a writer?" I answered that I'd started writing when I was thirteen and have always wanted to write. She looked at me funny and asked, "So why did you wait so long to actually do it?" I had no answer.

Why did I wait so long? It keeps running around in my brain. I'm heading onto forty and I'm finally doing what I wanted to do at thirteen. My entire adult life had been filled with doing the right things. You know, go to college, get married, get a job, pay the bills. Being a proper, responsible adult. I still am the proper adult (Well as much of an adult as I'll ever be) but I am also fulfilling my dream.

I'll be the first to admit my self confidence has never been the greatest and that plays a part as to why I never tried. But also I honestly never thought it was possible. That it was just a dream, something that would never be me. I'm just an average person, things like this don't happen to me. Publishing deals and such. It's so far fetched that it's crazy.

I wanted to be realistic. To be adult.

But after the conversation with my daughter I thought long and hard. As parents we always tell our kids to go for their dreams. That anything is possible. If I could believe it for my kids why not for me?

How can I honestly push my kids to go for their dreams if I'm not living mine? I wanted to at least try, so I put my self doubts aside, and jumped in. I still have my day job, I still am a parent, a daughter, a sister and all my other titles. I'm still the same person I was, but even Mr. Gloria has noticed a difference. I'm more confident, more at ease with myself. More me.

If there's one thing I can say at the end of it all its never give up. You can live your dreams and still be the adult you need to be. Anything is possible. I'm living proof.

Sorry for the sappy post tonight but it's what I was feeling.

Thursday, 10 April 2014

I posted this a while back on "the history lesson" section. But I've had a few people unable to find it - so I'm posting it here too. This is a short scene between my two characters Anna and Jenny. EnjoY!




This scene takes place after Anna has been zombified but before any meeting with Mr. Scrumptious. It is a stand alone (it doesn't appear in Supernaturally Yours) but showcases the relationship between Anna (my heroine) and her long time BFF, Jenny. So with that preface in mind lets delve into a girls night out....

"Oh my god Jenny, I cannot believe I let you talk me into this." Annas voice was raised over the thumping music.

"Pulease!" Jenny tossed her black hair over her shoulder and grinned. "You were looking for something to do tonight."

"Something. As in go out for coffee. Not this!"

"Just admit it, my favourite zombie, you love it!" Jenny squealed and turned towards the stage as the music swelled, announcing the next act was about to begin.

"Ladies, next up for your pleasure," a voice sounded over the loud speakers, "a return engagement with the Latin Lady Lover, Luciano!"

The women surrounding the stage surged and screeched with bliss.

Just before the lights dimmed Jenny waved at the place cards in front of both girls with a wicked gleam in her eyes.

Luciano dance onto the stage, his hips snapping back and forth. His smile was predatory as he twirled the little mustache on his upper lip. He mouthed the words to the song and the women in the bar went crazy. His waist length hair was unbound and by the end of his act he had turned around and was shaking a well waxed ass towards the crowd as his hair haloed about him.

Anna laughed along with Jenny and they both held up their large cards.

Annas read "7.5" and Jennys "5.0"

The music died off and Luciano was now available for private dances.

A tie dyed thong clad waiter brought them their latest round of drinks, a concoction aptly named "A full monty" for Jenny and a schmirnoff ice for Anna.

"7.5 really?" Jenny drawled.

"I was trying to be nice." Anna sipped on her drink.

"5.0 WAS being nice. Did you not see that huge pimple on his ass? And how small his -"

"Jenny!" Anna interrupted.

"I was gonna say, eyes were. How small his eyes were. You, Anna have a dirty mind."

Anna nodded in total agreement and they broke into laughter.

"Why aren't you drinking something fun, like a buttery nipple?" Jenny questioned when the giggles had finally dried up.

"I would think that's obvious." Anna smirked. "You won't catch me drinking anything in this place that doesn't come from a bottle." She waved a hand, indicating the dank dirty interior of "Hussies Strip Club" then she added. "You never know what you might catch."

"Anna, you're already a zombie. You can't 'catch' anything, hell you can't die!" Jenny giggled drunkenly into her drink.

"Hey just because one of us is being responsible doesn't mean you have to get huffy." Anna fluffed her insanely red hair out behind her, in the process she inadvertently slapped a passing drunk girl.

"I'm so sorry!" She turned towards the girl in apology.

The girl had a penis adorned necklace on and continued stumbling by without noticing the backhand. With relief Anna turned back to Jenny.

"I do not get huffy." Jenny stated emphatically.

"Um, that tone alone was huffy." Anna laughed just as the stage lights dimmed once more.

Jenny reached over and pinched Annas thigh in silent retaliation.

"Ow!" Anna yelped then leaned over and mock whispered in Jennys ear. "Just cuz I'm a zombie doesn't mean that didn't hurt! If you weren't my bestie I'd lay a beat down on you!"

Jenny rolled her blue eyes in disbelief then turned her attention back to the stage.

"Tonight we have a god among men here from down under." The disembodied voice announced. "The one, the only, The Long Dong Ranger!"

A man dressed in a khaki outfit sauntered onto the stage. In his left hand he carried a bullwhip, which he snapped loudly on the hard wood of the stage. His face was hidden in shadows below his Tillie hat. Slowly while his hips rocked back and forth to the beat of the music, he unbuttoned his shirt and slid it down his arms. The green shirt his the floor and Mr. Musclebound outbacker coiled the whip around his torso. The leather slicked against his greased up, hairless and oh-so-well-defined pectoral muscles. Like a snake finding its way home the whip slithered and slid its way around the pure perfection of the Long Dong Ranger.

The audience held its breath as Ranger grabbed at the waist band of his trousers. With a negligent flick of his wrist the outbacker yanked the tearaway pants off.

He stood there, all muscled and defined man, in his leopard skin thong, allowing the women to worship him with their screams. The audience lined up on the stage, waiting for their chance to tuck bills into his almost non-existent outfit.

As each woman approached, he thrust and spun and waggled his ass at them all perfectly in time with the music. Giving them exactly what they wanted, a show.

Jenny and Anna held up their matching scorecards. "9.0" They cheered their approval along with the entire audience.

A tap on Annas shoulder caught her off guard. She turned suddenly, and spilt her drink on the extra large body builder wearing a 'bouncer' shirt.

"I'm sorry!" She exclaimed, trying not to look at the offending spill, which happened to fall so it now looked like the bouncer had wet himself.

He took a long breath and then said. "Ladies. I'm going to have to ask you to leave. We don't allow Olympic type scoring."

"Hey!" Jenny yelled. "We're paying customers! You can't make us leave!"

"You may be paying customers, but you have had several complaints against you and you have made our artists feel uncomfortable."

"Artists?" Jenny stood in her five inch heels with her hands on her hips. "Artists, come on now, that's a pretty big stretch."

The bouncers lips thinned as he grabbed each womans arm and led them out of the bar.

The door slammed resolutely behind them.

"So," Anna laughed, "that was fun."

They walked laughing towards the nearest cab and Jenny smirked. "It was the first time for me."

"What you, a stripper virgin?" Anna feigned surprise to which Jenny snorted a negative. "Okay, I know you've been thrown out of bars before, so what cherry got popped for you tonight?"

Jenny grinned. "First time being kicked out of perverts row."

The cab pulled up to them and both girls, laughing piled into the back.