Friday, February 21, 2014

Hey everyone! It has definitely been a while. I have been so busy lately with my latest adventure. We started fostering dogs! Yep, from our local animal shelter. A rescue group steps in and declares commitment, then they need a foster home to place the dog in until they can arrange for pickup or until that furbaby has found it's furever home. That's where we come in. Sometimes it's a week, and sometimes it's a month. These dogs come in all shapes and sizes, breeds, colors, and temperaments, too. We've had some sweet ones, silly ones, crazy ones, and some that we absolutely hate to part with. We've had a deaf one and a pregnant one. It has definitely been an adventure, but we love every minute. Being able to save these babies and give them a chance at a real life makes every moment worth it. The sad part is, a large percentage of these babies are owner surrenders. Now, I understand in some situations giving up your beloved pet is a hard, but necessary, decision. But most reasons they give are, "he won't stop peeing in the house" or "he barks too much" or "she jumps up on people" or "she just won't listen". Well, these are behavior issues. These can be worked on, fixed. That is an unacceptable reason to dump your furbaby at the shelter and just walk away like he/she is just a movie you rented for the night. A lot of these animals are affected by that "drop-off" for a long time, too. They sit with their back to the door, don't eat or drink, they get depressed. The only life they have ever known is gone. Their comfy bed is now a cold, hard floor. Their familiar faces are gone forever. 
That's why I do what I do. Because so many never make it out of those cold, dark shelters. Which brings me to my next point. It could all be brought under much better control if we SPAY & NEUTER! There are countless cats and dogs that get euthanized every year because they continue to run the streets and breed over and over. Then they end up in shelters and ultimately, euthed. We need to end this vicious cycle. Most shelters are run by mostly volunteers, too. So, if you find you have a little extra time, and a lot of extra love, please consider donating your time to your local shelter. A lot of times, they just need someone to come in and love on the babies, or give walks, or help clean. Every little bit helps. And any love you can give to the babies in there will make them feel wonderful! 
As you can tell, I have a huge heart when it comes to animals. I love them all- cats, dogs, bunnies, etc. :)
Anyway, I've rambled on enough...hope everyone has been doing well. Y'all take care and I'll holler at ya soon!

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Christmas Traditions

Greetings from Podunkville again, my friends. Here it is almost Christmas. As we prepare to get ready to have family and friends over, or travel to be with them, or just sit in our comfy chair watching old movies until it's over, there is one thing we all seem to do, whether we realize it or not. Reminisce. Yes, we tend to think back to our childhood and reminisce about waking up on Christmas morning and doing whatever family tradition it was that we did back then. Sometimes we carry that over to our children. But as times change, sometimes we make new traditions. 

Our family has grown a lot in the last few years, as I now have (almost) four grandkids. Well, my house seems to be home base. We always start Christmas morning here, then the kids seem to go about their day with their in-laws and so forth. So we have started a breakfast tradition. We always have a huge spread for breakfast n Christmas morning. Eggs, grits, bacon, sausage, pancakes, french toast, biscuits, juice, coffee. 

Then we always have a ham later that day, spread out on the kitchen table with bread, chips, dip, baked beans, cheese, and other little fixins. So as the kids make their way back home, they can stop back by our house for a sandwich or two before they go home. It seems to work out good. And I really enjoy having the kids around. 

So here's hoping you and your family have a very Merry Christmas. Stay safe, don't eat too much, and remember- there are now Ugly Christmas Sweater parties so when you get one, be happy- you'll have something to wear when you are invited to one!!!!  

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Taking the good with the bad

Ya ever have those days where ya feel like no matter what you do, it just turns to crap? You say the wrong thing, take something out of context, misunderstand someone, run late all day? Yeah- those sorts of days. The ones that make you want to crawl under a rock and scream your ever-lovin' head off, or at least have a good cry. 

But then, we also have the opposite kind of days. The days where everything that happens seems too good to be true. You find a really close parking space at every store you go to, every item you went after was on sale, you found a twenty in your pocket you didn't know you had. Yeah- those days are awesome. 

We all have both. Some have more of one kind than the other, some are equally balanced. However it is dealt to us, we must take the good with the bad. We have to learn to adjust ourselves to handle whatever life throws at us so that we don't lose our minds. 
It's not always easy, but we gotta do what we gotta do. As an aspiring (and I use that term lightly) author, I wing it most days. I write, submit, and if it gets accepted, great. If not, back to the drawing board. The ones I do have out in print seem to be stagnant at the moment.  I even made one into an eBook on Smashwords for 99 cents. That's right- 99 cents- and haven't sold a single one. (Here's the link to that: )
But I am a patient person. People will stumble across my work, one day. They will discover the poems that are in Rhymes From Darker Times, and those poems will help someone get through their day, or through a rough patch in their life. Then they might leave a review saying so. Then, my friends, is when it will be well worth the wait. :)

Monday, November 11, 2013

Happy Veterans Day

From the depths he rises

Through the rubble he makes his way

He is tattered and broken,

Yet it does not deter his will.

Determined, he pushes forward,

Knowing he must move on,

Bleeding and hurting,

Having been through complete hell.

He picks up the child

Cradles it as if it were his own,

He cries out, not from pain,

But for the pain of the babe,

That it must have suffered moments ago.

He carries on looking for survivors,

Through the smoke, the fire, the debris.

Through everything he pushes forward.

Because he is a

My daddy is a Veteran. He served in Korea. He tells

 me stories sometimes of interesting, adventurous 

times that he had. He talks of men he was close with 

that never made it home. He talks of outrageous 

rules and crazy antics. But what is most important, is

 WHEN he talks. Because when he talks of these

 things, he smiles. Regardless of what he is speaking

 of at the time, there is a smile on my daddy's face. He

 is proud. And you know what? He's got him one

 proud daughter! And I am thankful. To ALL of our

men and women who have served, or are serving

 today, or will serve someday. I am free and will

 remain that way thanks to these fine folks. 

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Interview With a Special Lady

Greetings, everyone! I am very excited to announce the guest appearance of Author Sharon C. Williams. I had the pleasure of "meeting" Sharon through a Facebook page, and we became instant friends. She is a very talented writer, has a wonderful sense of humor, and is one of the most awesome people I have ever come across. I am proud to call her my friend.  :) (And the green is in honor of Jasper!)

So now, without further hesitation, please allow me to let you get to know Sharon Williams as well.....

Okay, so let's get started:

What first inspired you to start writing?

In 2009 my husband told a friend that he felt I wrote well. Upon her telling me, it got me thinking on the subject. A story started to form in my head. I
’d read enough times for one to write on what one knows.

I have eight birds. This alone has spurred a few short stories, but I focused on my Amazon parrot, Jasper. In the fall of that same year, I had two surgeries within weeks of each other. Being stuck in bed for a few weeks, I started to pen out my first book.

If you could have a glass of Pepsi with any one famous person, (actor, writer, President, etc.), who would it be and why?

Just one? That is hard. I would have to choose Agatha Christie. I have all her books minus the ones that are no longer in print. She was a lady who could masterfully weave a story so tight it kept you turning the pages. I would love to talk to her about her profession, and how she penned such amazing stories.

You just had a book released titled "Jasper, Amazon Parrot." Can you tell us about it? 

My first book, “Jasper, Amazon Parrot: A Rainforest Adventure”, was released on September 7th of this year.  The premise of book is about a young Amazon parrot named Jasper who is being raised in the rainforest. Along for the ride is his brother, Willie, and their friend, Charlie, who is a Spider Monkey. 

They explore their home together as they encounter mischief and danger. Along the way, Jasper learns about some life lessons important to the young parrot and his brother.

It's a children's chapter book that falls in the genre of adventure for children in the age groups of 7-9 years of age.

How are things going with the book since its release?

Things are going pretty good, but at a chaotic pace. For once the book was released, it’s been go, go, go. Even though my book was picked up by a publisher, there is still much work to be done. The economy we all know what it looks like, and how it affects businesses. Marketing and promoting my book is not something publishers can do like they used to in the past.

I have had three online interviews, and have a couple more to go. Two book signing opportunities have fallen into my lap, and I’ve been researching how to get those done properly. I have a shot at appearing at the local library. It is non-stop. One has to keep the foot on the pedal when it comes to one's book, and any success you hope to gain from it.

I have received some really nice reviews from people that have really made me smile. They made me realize that what I was trying to accomplish from writing this book at least with these people had been done.  While sales are doing well, and things are picking up, I have a long way to go, but will definitely give it a good try.

The real Jasper!

What is one piece of advice you would give to young aspiring authors?

One piece of advice? Write on what you know even if it's just one sentence. The beauty is wrapping a book around that one bit of knowledge. It's okay to write outside the box. Heck, I'm wrapping up a novelette that is the genre of paranormal which I had no clue on how or what to write about. It is based on a storm door stuck in a tree. I might not know paranormal but I know about storm doors and what they look like. When I write about something I know and am passionate about, it is a work of love. The pages fly by for me when this happens, and before I know it, I am typing the end.  It's not work at all.

What do you feel is the most difficult part of the writing process from start to publish?

For me, it’s editing. It is a curse word in my vocabulary when it comes to writing. There are people who are meant to be editors, but I am not one of those people. I would rather just sit down, and write to my heart's content, knowing I have an editor in my arsenal that will look at my work and make it into a gem.  Motivation and support from people around you is a big plus in anyone's corner as well.  If you don’t have support from your family or friends, it’s a long road to achieving your dreams.

Do you feel that traditional publishing is fading away due to the craze of self-publishing?

I feel that traditional publishers need to embrace this form of publishing. Self-publishing is here to stay.

I have works that have been published with both options.  However, people like myself will always be around. Those who love going into a book store, as hours tick away, are oblivious to us. I love the feel of a book in my hand. I want to be able to turn a real page, and inhale the essence that is a real book.

I do have a tablet, but my preference will always be a real book. For the record the tablet was given to me. So long as there are people like me out there, traditional publishers won't fade away. They may downsize, and be more particular of whom they publish, but to have them no longer be around would be a true injustice to the reader in me.

Are there any special writing habits or traditions you have that you absolutely cannot live without?

I have a pen that a friend bought me for my birthday. I like how it feels in my hand, so I tend to use this pen when I write. My words are done via longhand before ever reaching my computer.  Any paper will do, but I will always write by hand first. I will also have a can of Pepsi sitting nearby, for the most part, depending on what time of day I write.

What Social Media outlets do you use to promote yourself and your work

I have two blogs. One is strictly for reviews of books while the other is for my author brand. Other sites include the following:

Website for reviews:

Sharon Williams

Thank you so much for sharing with us, Sharon. It has been fun, and interesting. 

Y'all be sure to check out Sharon's latest book, Jasper, Amazon Parrot: A Rainforest Adventure and don't forget to follow Sharon on FaceBook and Twitter and Goodreads and more! 

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Rocky start to November

So, here we are in November already. Today is the second. Today I am thanking the Good Lord for my son. Because yesterday could have ended up a lot different. 

First, let me give you a little background. My son is my son, any way you slice it. I love him as my own. He's my husband's boy, and has been in my life since he was about 8. He's lived with us for years and I adore him. My husband says I spoil him rotten, and maybe I do. He's a great kid. Honest, sweet, funny, hard working, and even makes his own bed every morning! He's never given us a lick of trouble. 

 I was standing in the kitchen fixing my cup of coffee to go. I was about to leave for work. My son was supposed to be on his way home from his girlfriend's house so that he could go to work, too. It was about 8:00 a.m. 
My cell phone rang. I looked at the caller i.d. and it was my son. "Hey, Baby," I said to him. What followed next had my heart racing, breath short, and tears flowing in an instant. Panic was setting in- and fast.
All I heard was a hysterical voice on the other end. I couldn't understand much, only bits and pieces. The only words I could understand- truck, tree, ditch and 'I'm sorry'. That was all it took. I went into "mom" mode. First thing I did was ask if he was okay. Next thing I did was told him to calm down so he could tell me where he was. Next thing I did was tell him to hang up and call 911. At this point, my husband grabbed the phone from from me in order to get the information he needed to get to where he was.  My hand went immediately to my mouth. I kept saying "Oh My God." My husband grabbed me and said "Let's go. I'll drive."

 When we got to him, he was being checked out by the EMT's. He had a few cuts and bruises, but he was okay. I lost it. I cried. I hugged him. I told him I loved him. Seeing the truck really put things into perspective for me. We were lucky. The fireman said had he hit the tree 3 inches to the left, we'd have rolled up on a whole different scenario. He had an Angel in that truck. I will always believe that. God was looking out for all of us yesterday. We were lucky He was. 

Hug your babies. Tell them you love them. Wear your seatbelts. Be careful. 

This blog post is more personal than I usually get, but I wanted you to know how yesterday moved me. Life is awfully short. I want to take this moment to thank each and every one of you who follow my blog, read my books, follow me on FaceBook, Goodreads, or my website. Thank you! It means a lot, even though I may not know you personally. :) 

Friday, October 25, 2013

Weird Week

As I sit here typing this latest blog post, I'm reflecting on the past week or two. It has been....crazy. So many very strange things have occurred in the past two weeks, that I'm not sure how to make heads or tails of it. Now, I don't mean strange like poltergeist-in-the-house strange. I mean, weird for even me

Without boring you with all the details (and to make a very long story short) I picked the WRONG week to give up smoking! 

And talk about bad luck- my husband had a flat tire on the side of the road. The jack wasn't tall enough to fit his jacked-up truck, so he gets our son to bring him one, who runs out of gas- right there on the spot. Then a buddy of ours recognizes our vehicles and stops to help- and needs a jump! Man, oh, man. 

And apparently, I've managed to piss some people off by doing nothing more than having a FaceBook page and sharing stuff. Which is set to private, by the way, so I have no clue how they saw it anyway. I'm starting to remember why I love animals more than people. 

And speaking of animals- Etowah Valley Humane Society had a goal for this year of adopting out 2000 animals. We have already met that! And it's only October! :) I'm so happy for all of our furbabies that are in loving homes and starting new lives! Whenever we adopt one out, it's really like saving two lives, because we can pull another one from animal control. 

The upside to the past week or so is that I have met some really great people in the "author" world. I don't know what it is, but every writer I have met thus far has been really cool. A couple of them have become my very good friends. I certainly am Blessed, that's for sure. :)

Be sure to stay tuned to this blog, as VERY soon I will have a surprise for you! I am starting to do interviews here, so that you can get to know some of the authors that I was talking about above. To keep things simple, I will always ask them the same questions, and will always implement links to their sites, books, etc. 

So, in closing, I'd like to raise my glass and say, "here's to better days ahead" and also that no, I did not quit smoking. Are you insane? With that kind of a week? 

Until next time, when we meet our lovely guest author, Sharon. Peace and love to ya! 

Friday, October 4, 2013

Been a While....

Wanna hear something funny? The reason I haven't written a blog post since July is....I forgot my sign in information. Yes, I know. What an idiot, right? I just couldn't remember my password OR my email, for that matter. I don't use this email address very often. I use Hotmail for everything, I just had to create a Gmail one in order to use Blogger. (Which I love, BTW) 

So here I am several months later. With, surprisingly, not a whole lot of new stuff to report. But, here's the dish....

I have come a long way with my classes on Canine Obedience. In fact, my average is 95 and I only have until March now and I'll be done. 

The table I had at The Bow Wow Meow Festival for my books was a flop. I sold one, but only to a fellow vendor there. I think she may have felt sorry for me. :(
The weather is starting to turn cooler now. I have quite a few backyard projects I'm trying to get done before the really cool weather sets in. That way, our friends and family can come enjoy evenings by the firepit with good company and even better conversation. :) 

I've been doing more lately with the local Humane Society. Currently we have a foster named Oliver. Quite the active little pup he is. He will be leaving tomorrow to head to his new home. I couldn't be happier for him! I am just so glad that I was able to get him from Animal Control and keep him until transport could pick him up to take him to his new home up in Pennsylvania. His new owners are going to adore him. :)
Here he is: 

Other than that, just the- dare I say it?- "normal" stuff going on. Work, animals, life. 
So until we meet again, remember my favorite saying- "Be unapologetically YOU". And do not ever give up or stop trying to achieve your goals. :)

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Rodeo Time!

Well, hello there, world! Been a busy one here in the Land of Podunkville! Ya know, for a small town, we sure got a lot goin' on! The local Rodeo is tonight, and that's a pretty big deal here. It's a full show, complete with with steer ropin', barrel racin', cow milkin' and bull ridin'. 

I've been working on a new book, as well as the other two I still have in the works. The new one is a non-fiction, which seems to come a lot easier to me than fiction. I don't know why. I can write fiction okay, but all of my ideas and such come flooding out at such a pace that I can't seem to keep up sometimes. And we certainly can't have simultaneous action scenes going on so that they get mixed up now, can we? 

So, Maters, Taters & Grits seems to be doing okay as far as sales. Of course, they could be better, but as long as it's moving at all, I'm good! And Rhymes from Darker Times, well, it' still too early to tell. I hope it does well. :) I have had a lot of positive feedback from local folk on both of them. I will be at a local show called Bow Wow Meow Festival in August. I'll have both books on hand and will be signing them! So, if'n ya take a notion, and you're in the area, stop by and pick up a copy! I'd love to chat with ya a minute! 

Remember, you can check out either book on Amazon! And the simplest way to find any of my work is here

Here's hoping all of y'all have a fantastic weekend! Keep that positive attitude, and keep smiling! 

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Happy 4th of July!!!!

Good afternoon everyone! Happy Independence Day!! I hope whatever you have planned for this Patriotic day includes fun, family and friends! And of course, safety!! Y'all remember that even though most accidents start with the words "Hey y'all, watch this!" doesn't mean that you can't be safe with fireworks! 'Round here, it's been raining for two days straight and we have rain in the forecast for the next three days, so they have cancelled any firework events they had planned. However, my hubby and me are going camping up at the lake, so we should have a really fun time trying to set up the tent in the rain and then staying in the tent all weekend looking out at the lake. Maybe we'll get lucky and it will stop long enough to get a little swimming and sunning in.....

I also wanted to give a huge shout out to my friends over at Sweatshoppe Publications. They have made my first two books possible and those guys ROCK! :) 

Speaking of things published, my piece, "Crimson Red" is in Nailpolish Stories Journal this quarter!!!
Check it out here!

Until next time, y'all be good, be safe and remember- NEVER GIVE UP ON YOU!!!!!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Time is precious

  Now that my husband has gone off to the great state of Utah, and Idaho, and many other places his new truck drivin' job will take him, I am finding myself trying to catch up on reading, writing reviews, my schoolwork, organizing my computer files, and many other things. Part of the reason I hadn't gotten all of these things done before is procrastination. I suppose the other part would be I just didn't know how to organize my time. When my husband is around, I spend time with him in the evenings, as I work all day. When I come home from work, after cooking dinner, taking care of the animals, and cleaning up, the last thing he wanted to see me do is open my laptop and bury my nose in it for two hours. I am finding that as I am checking things off my list, there are new things being added. Where are they coming from? A black hole? Plucked from thin air? I can picture some troll-like figure sneaking up and adding things to this mysterious to-do list behind my back. I must set a trap for him....

Task Troll
So perhaps with hubby being gone for several weeks at a time now, I can catch up on some much needed writing. I have two WIP's (Work in Progress) that I need to at least get a few more chapters turned out on. I'd like to get some painting done in my house while I have the peace and quiet to do so....

Until next time, remember to always trust what's in your heart, you're never too old to start living your dream, and never give up on YOU! Oh- and if you see Task Troll- hold him there and call me asap!! 

Monday, June 24, 2013

New Beginnings

Howdy y'all! Hope everyone had a great weekend! 
 I have been extremely busy down here in Georgia lately. With Spring, I have been trying to get plants planted and other backyard projects finished. I work a 45-hour a week job, and take care of a household of 5 people (my parents, hubby, son and me) plus 3 Dobermans and my Bug. Bug is my very spoiled cat whom I love very much. Here he is: 

 Anyway, among all of these things, I am currently taking classes for Canine Obedience and Animal Behavior. So, if my writing has suffered lately, well- this is why. However, over the weekend my husband flew out to Utah to start a job with a new company as a truck driver, hauling cars. This will free up at least a few hours a week for me to get back to writing. Women- you know what I'm talkin' about! ;) I also have two books in my library that I am currently reading on that I MUST get finished very soon, for the authors are waiting for reviews from me. I feel horrible that I haven't had time to sit down and finish them yet. 

 So, here's to new beginnings, and tying up the loose dangly thingies on some other things!