Glad you stopped by. I hope you'll stop by again for Monday Morning Musings, Meet the Author Thursday, and Saturday Sampler.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

#IWSG: Insecurities

It's the first Wednesday of the month and that means it's Insecure Writers Support Group time. IWSG is the brainchild of Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh Thanks, Alex, for starting this group and keeping it going. And thanks to this month's awesome hosts Charity Bradford, S.A. Larsen, AJ, Tamara Narayan, Allison Gammons, and Tanya Miranda!

I wish I had advice to give those struggling with insecurities. We all have them. It’s part of our makeup as writers. To be a good writer, we have to be sensitive. Not just feel emotions, we have to be able to write so well that we elicit emotions in our readers.
That’s a tough job.

So being sensitive people, we are easily hurt when someone says our “baby is ugly”—aka, rejection. Not just formal rejections from an editor or agent, but by critique partners when they point out what isn’t working in the story. Or a family member who thinks we just sit around all day and drink coffee. (Okay, we do a lot of that, too.) Nobody but another writer knows how hard it is to put words on a page (or screen) in a cohesive way that forms a story. When we don’t receive positive support, we hurt.

We read how we need to toughen up, develop a thick skin. Yeah, right. We throw our heart and soul into our work, an editor loves it enough to give it life, and a reviewer thinks it stinks. Ouch. How do we deal with that? Not read reviews? Then we might miss those 5-star reviews that make our day and give us that proverbial pat on the back we need.

Working in solitude, we often feel alone. In online writer groups like this or groups that meet in person, our peers bolster us and help us deal with insecurity. Hurray for the Insecure Writers Support Group where we can let our insecurities hang out and know that someone (many someones) will offer words of comfort and encouragement.

As a reminder, here's the purpose of IWSG: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Happy Writing and don't let insecurity get you down.

Click here to find others on the Insecure Writers Support Group Blog Hop. Or go to IWSG on Facebook to see who’s blogging today.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Heat Wave #Giveaway Hop



What makes a good summer read? Back in the days before air conditioning things were slower in the summer because of the heat. We headed for the beach or the shade in the backyard. And we read. When I was growing up, I took a book and an old quilt out to the north side of the house because it was shady in the afternoon. Nancy Drew was my favorite. I read all Mom's books, and then I started getting them for Christmas gifts. The girl detective was my hero. When I decided to write a mystery, I knew I had to have a girl detective. Alex (Alexandra) O'Hara is a PI and would give Nancy Drew a run for her money in THE CASE OF THE BYGONE BROTHER.

After taking over O’Hara & Palzetti, Confidential Investigations from her dad and his partner, Alex's bottom line has taken a plunge. So when a femme fatale offers her the case of a lifetime along with a huge advance, Alex sees her finances on a definite upswing. But someone doesn’t want her to find the long-lost brother. Complicating matters is the return of Alex’s old heartthrob, Nick Palzetti. Is he really there just to see her or does he have an ulterior motive? The Lake Michigan resort town of Fair Haven is abuzz with the news that O’Hara & Palzetti are together again.


“Hello, gorgeous.”
I whacked my head on the display shelf.
Well, what would you do if you were lying across the top of a four-drawer lateral file cabinet, and your arm—yardstick attached—was wedged between the wall and the cabinet, trying to retrieve the license renewal application that if you mangled, crushed or couldn’t get would mean the end of your business, and the ex-love-of-your-life stood in the doorway looking at your butt?
The shelf shook on its braces from contact with my head. Never mind that the encounter didn’t do much for the aforementioned body part. The Fair Haven Chamber of Commerce awards rattled, and signed Detroit Tigers baseballs pelted my head, shoulders, and the back of my thigh. I dropped the yardstick and swore.
“I thought you promised your mother you wouldn’t swear anymore.” He would remind me of that vow.
“Relapse,” I muttered as I looked over my shoulder.
In that loose-limbed, cocky manner I once thought scary, sexy, and so cool, Nick Palzetti stood in the doorway to the spare office. He even dressed the same in a black leather jacket, black knit shirt, and jeans that molded his hips. Lordy, he could still make my mouth go dry.
As I wiggled back and sideways across the long cabinet, I felt my skirt ride up. Of all days to wear a skirt. With my foot, I searched for the desk chair I’d climbed to get on top of the cabinet. I’d kicked off my high heels before standing on the chair, probably the only smart thing I’d done so far.
“Red panties, you naughty girl.”
I clamped my legs together. “Quit looking up my skirt.”
“Need a hand?” he asked.
The way my luck was going, he’d start clapping. “No, thanks. I’m fine.”
My foot finally found the chair. It spun away. I swore again. Mom would understand.
“Don’t you know better than to climb on things that move?”
“Gee, I never heard that before.”
Thanks to said skirt and gravity, I started to slide. I grabbed the back of the cabinet and dangled, the front edge digging into my ribs. I could have let go. The cabinet was only five feet high and full. Otherwise it would have toppled over, crushing me. Now, that might have been a good thing. It would’ve put me out of my misery.
Two hands grabbed my waist. Normally, I liked a man’s hands on me. Just not the man who broke my heart fifteen years ago. “Okay, Lexie. I’ve—”
“Don’t call me that,” I snapped. “I go by Alex.” Probably not the best time to assert my name choice.
“Okay, Alex. I’ve got you.” He did. I tried to twist away, lost my grip on the cabinet and fell.
“Gotcha,” he said, a half sec before we tumbled to the hardwood floor. He must have twisted because I landed on top of him. That had to hurt. With my height, I was no light-weight. I looked through a curtain of red. My carefully arranged, very professional chignon had tumbled down. Like the song, thanks to Nick Palzetti, I’d come undone.
“Another fine mess you’ve gotten me into.” I hooked a hank of hair behind my ear and propped my elbow on his chest. “Just like Indiana Jones, hey, Nick? I always knew you’d come back through my door. Of course, I’d rather it was Indy, instead of you.”

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