Thursday, December 29, 2016

Perspective

Image courtesy of digitalart at
FreeDigitalPhotos.net

So many wonderful celebrities of passed recently. It’s a bit mindboggling. However, as I’ve read these announcements over the past few days, I’ve also noticed numerous posts from people on Facebook and Twitter, even Google Plus, about how 2016 has been a horrible year.

I often see posts about health issues, financial problems, and OMG, the Presidential Election was so terrible with the bs that people posted that I just stayed off Facebook for the most part, especially after the election was over. I’ve been seeing posts about lost jobs, posts about cancer, posts about publishers and book distributors shutting down…and I have to wonder—is 2016 an exceptionally horrible year? Or, is it that more and more people are accessing the web from all sorts of gadgets; therefore, they’re voicing more and more upset?
For my family—as in my folks, my adult children, grandbabies, myself, hubby, and youngest still at home—it’s the same old, same old. I don’t think we’ve ever had a year where things have been fruitful and quiet. We just grin and bear it, taking it one day at a time like we always do. Regardless, people around us are so unhappy, traumatized, and struggling. I’m unsure what to think of all this, but my heart does go out to them. Perhaps it’s time everyone goes back to basics. Perhaps all that we’re exposed to now via TV and Internet makes people feel they’re going without things? There are people in rain forests and nomads in deserts who live day by day. They’re unaware of not having “things”, they’re unaware that they’re “poor”. And what is poor? If one isn’t aware they’re going without something, is that person truly poor?
As long as we have our health, food, a roof over our heads, and keep the bills paid, life is actually pretty good.
It’s all perspective. 💖 Here's to a better one for 2017.

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Sale on my F.L. Bicknell and Ana Lee Kennedy books at Riverdale Avenue Books, one of my publishers. 30% off until January 15th. Use promo code 2016 at checkout.


Saturday, December 24, 2016

If We Were All A Little Kinder


Sadly, I’ve never been a fan of Christmas. I’m not a Scrooge, but it seems that this time of year is a huge struggle for the family. My husband is often laid off this time of year, making a nice Christmas impossible, and with the expense for a PS4 or Xbox game, let alone other high-tech gifts, and add a huge family to it…yeah, Christmas is always a bit rough. My youngest son likes video games, but thank God he loves books, too.

I heard on a local radio station this morning that a study revealed that 75% of adults would prefer to skip Christmas altogether. Heh, thought I was the only one who felt that way. However, I have always enjoyed Christmas Eve for some reason. It’s probably the anticipation, the atmosphere, but there’s something about the Eve of the holiday that I can’t put my finger on that just exudes…magic?

Even this Christmas Eve as I type, with the hubby preparing to go to work, and the youngest sacked out after a night and morning playing with his two nieces and his nephew, as I’ve been working on another revision of my novel, there’s still that tangible feeling, that sense of expectation today.

My favorite holiday, though, is New Year’s Eve. It’s not the drinking (which I can’t do), not the partying (which we don’t do) that appeals to me. It’s the promise of a fresh start, the hope that the New Year will be different—better. It’s the opportunity to be a better person, write a better novel, change hard times for good ones.

Instead of making a New Year’s resolution to lose weight, drink less, stop smoking, or spending less money—all wonderful goals!—why don’t we all make the resolution to be kinder to people? If we could all be a li’l kinder to one another, regardless of race, religion, class, etc, this world would be a better place.

Merry Christmas!
Grab my Christmas Titles & A Wintry New Year Tale!
 
Fire In Winter Whips & Chains & Candy Canes  - Wrapped Around Your Handlebars

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Only One


Image courtesy of KEKO64 at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
As I mention in my bio on the site, I’ve returned to college full time. A few years ago, I was attending Wheeling Jesuit University to achieve an English major to back up the lengthy background I have in writing, publishing, and editing, and taking history as a minor. Life interrupted on a major level, so I had to postpone my education. I had another child, too, my last one, but between my husband’s health emergency then, four years later, discovering that I have some serious health issues, the last twelve years have been rough. I’m not whining, just stating facts. It is what it is.
After my health diagnosis of diabetes, which had been left untreated for about ten years, and severe anemia, then being put on medication and a change of diet, I’m now able to think clearly. Honestly, I have huge blank spots in my memory during that decade—holy cow, a decade! But the constant, raging pain I suffered is now gone, thank God, and I feel better than I have in a long, long time. Twelve years later, I have resigned from a high-stress job, am back to writing every chance I get, and I have returned to college. However, the publishing scene has changed so drastically that I decided to pursue history as my major instead.
Having a history degree opens so many doors of opportunity, plus I can use history as a background for my novels. I have to say, though, that I found myself in unfamiliar territory. School full time during the day is nothing like night classes at WJU. At first, I felt very unsure of myself because I’m a non-traditional student, but now that I have one full semester behind me with a 3.666 GPA, I’m ready for the next semester and determined to achieve a 4.0 just to say that I have. Well, that is until I have to take a math class, LOL.
I knew something was wrong over the last few years, knew that I shouldn’t ache the way I did, even going to the doctor about it to be told I had the onset of fibromyalgia. Diabetes was something I never dreamed I’d have. I’m 5’9”, slim, always active, but since my grandmother and mother have the disease, guess who else got it too? Another thing that this disease did was give me a dark mood that I struggled to overcome. Depression was debilitating at times. Since being on my meds and changing my diet, the depression is gone, the pain is gone, and it’s so nice to be able to actually think and create again. I’ve enjoyed school so much. One thing about being a non-traditional student is that I have an appreciation for learning, enjoy the classes and materials, and it gives me an opportunity to get away from home on a regular basis.
Having this disease is tough, though. When you hear “Oh, it’s a manageable ailment” that’s true, but unless you have diabetes or are very close to someone who has it, one has no idea what it’s like to not be able to eat much, nor the struggle of the body wanting that high sugar level it has grown accustomed to keeping. I’ve dropped so much weight that I’ve now bought three wardrobes. And each person’s body is different too. If I eat an apple, for me it’s as bad as eating a slice of fudge cake. Yet I can eat most berries with little effect on my sugar level. Bread is a huge no-no, therefore pasta is too, both of which I love and now can only have tiny portions, if that. When I went on my medication, I thought, at times, I was going to die. The side effects and the changes in my body had me so ill for the first month that there were times I could barely hold my head up. The last six months have been a huge transformation, that’s for sure.
Take care of your bodies, dear readers. You have only one. And if you feel that something is wrong, go see your doctor. Don’t put it off. Also, don’t let you doctor brush aside your concerns. My family means the world to me and I want to be here for them. Remember that there’s someone who loves you.
Image courtesy of Idea go at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
So, now that I’m on winter break, I’ve been working on book 3 of The Werewolves of Rebellion. I’ve sent my agent a proposal for a non-fiction ms, and I will be revising my big paranormal romance novel and hopefully have it sent to my agent before I return to school in January. Oh, and Christmas cards. I’ve been writing out many of those. *Note to self: must mail them by Friday at the latest.*
All that aside, I have a favor to ask. Those of you who read Nightshade’s Flame (book 1), would you please leave a review at Amazon.com? And for those of you who might consider the book, you can click on the free preview to the left there and get a nice introduction to the novel to see if you would like to read more. Objective, constructive reviews are difficult for an author to obtain, so I appreciate the efforts of those of you who read and review my novel. Much love and a hearty *Merry Christmas!* to you all!


Links for those who don’t buy from Amazon but if you prefer print, Amazon is the only distributor who has the hard copy.

Sons of Anarchy meets True Blood in Ana Lee Kennedy’s Nightshade’s Flame, the first novel in The
Werewolves of Rebellion series.

Bernadette Kelly’s talent for writing true crime books has led her to Rebellion, a town with a sinister secret. Researching the Wraithkillers, a one-percenter motorcycle club that has entered a delicate truce with the Werewolves of Rebellion, she’s determined to show readers the truth about MCs. However, when she falls for the president of the Werewolves of Rebellion, Frank Nightshade, she’s discovers the harsh truth about him and his clan, plunging her into a supernatural world of myths.

Frank meets Bernadette, a gorgeous redhead with a bombshell body and intellect to match, and takes her off the Wraithkillers’ hands. He wonders how in the hell he’s going to hide the truth from her about his people. When the River Rebels move into Frank’s territory, his people are faced with a Claiming and Maiming, a violent ritual that hasn’t been done for decades. The River Rebels’ president wants Bernadette, and he’s even willing to use a psychotic killer to help him get her.

Frank’s clan must defeat the River Rebels, while still keeping their secret, but in doing so, Frank wonders if this will cost him the only woman he’s ever loved?


Riverdale Avenue Books: http://bit.ly/2fMOHZ4


All Romance eBooks: http://bit.ly/2fDETDc




Friday, December 9, 2016

Maybe It's Time to Turn the Tables!


Image courtesy of
David Castillo Dominici
at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
The other day, some dude cold-called me about donating to a charity that helps policemen get aid they can’t afford when wounded on the job and so on. I’ve heard of this for military men, having gotten many such calls in this area for donations or buying Christmas bulbs where the money goes to the soldiers via these organizations, but this was the first time I’ve received a cold call for the guys in blue. I was a bit suspicious since there is an epidemic in my neck of the woods of out-of-the-blue phone calls, asking for donations to charities that don’t exist, collections agencies stating that one has an outstanding bill that needs paid immediately, and ones that swear you’ve won a lottery if you only send x amount to process the fees… So, little warning bells were clanging in my head making a terrible echo effect. 😜

What ticked me off about this phone call was that this caller spoke to me as though I had no choice in whether or not I was gonna donate money, as if he knew without a doubt I’d hand over our hard-earned cash.

Nope.

I didn't feel particular catty that day, so I simply said, “I’m sorry but my husband has been out of work and has been on this new job only a short time, plus it’s Christmas, so there are no extra funds right now.”

To which he replied: “But it’s only $20, so I know you will—”

Click. Hung up on his demanding ass.

I get that these types of jobs where the employee must ask for money are tough. I worked for a company years ago that cold-called people. I lasted a whole three hours then walked out. I know those jobs are high stress, that high-stress jobs take a toll on people who have a quota to meet or a rigid time frame in which to perform the job. But to talk to people as though they have no choice about whether or not they're gonna donate money, money they bust their butts to earn every week? Nuh-uh. That’s low.

I did have the overwhelming urge to turn the tables on this caller and demand that the guy should buy one of my books, see what sort of response I got from him on the counter offensive. Seriously, if he’s representing a cop charity, he’d probably enjoy Nightshade’s Flame, right? *snort* But I wasn’t in the mood to mess with him, so I hung up…this time. Mwahaha!

Hey, don't worry. I was a good girl. I know Santa is watching. 😉

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Print and e-Book
Sons of Anarchy meets True Blood in Ana Lee Kennedy’s Nightshade’s Flame, the first novel in The Werewolves of Rebellion series.

Bernadette Kelly’s talent for writing true crime books has led her to Rebellion, a town with a sinister secret. Researching the Wraithkillers, a one-percenter motorcycle club that has entered a delicate truce with the Werewolves of Rebellion, she’s determined to show readers the truth about MCs. However, when she falls for the president of the Werewolves of Rebellion, Frank Nightshade, she’s discovers the harsh truth about him and his clan, plunging her into a supernatural world of myths.

Frank meets Bernadette, a gorgeous redhead with a bombshell body and intellect to match, and takes her off the Wraithkillers’ hands. He wonders how in the hell he’s going to hide the truth from her about his people. When the River Rebels move into Frank’s territory, his people are faced with a Claiming and Maiming, a violent ritual that hasn’t been done for decades. The River Rebels’ president wants Bernadette, and he’s even willing to use a psychotic killer to help him get her.

Frank’s clan must defeat the River Rebels, while still keeping their secret, but in doing so, Frank wonders if this will cost him the only woman he’s ever loved?
Riverdale Avenue Books: http://bit.ly/2fMOHZ4
All Romance eBooks: http://bit.ly/2fDETDc