Picture
For those who are not close to me, I will simply say my husband has passed away.  It wasn't sudden, it was a long illness.  I will have more time for writing and keeping up with this website, but obviously I would rather have my husband back.

If I learned one thing from the experience, it's this, talk to the one you love and listen.  Not only am I comforted by the fact that we did everything we were able to, to sustain his life, but I know what my path is now that he's gone.

We knew from the beginning his chances of survival were slim and we began a conversation of how to handle the devastating news and what my husbands wishes were.  It was always his decision and he fought tooth and nail very bravely.  As he began to deteriorate, our conversations turned to what he wanted for final arrangements and what would happen to me once he was gone.  Very painful, yes, but necessary.  We cried and held each other as we tried to imagine what my life would be like without him. Through these conversations we gave me the greatest gift.  He gave me the rest of my life. 

During his illness we met others in various stages of the disease he was afflicted with, and their spouses.  Others we met were there as volunteers after their loved one passed.  One person in particular sticks in my mind, she brought home-made cookies once a week and spoke to everyone for a moment as she passed them out.  Her husband had passed away and this is how she dealt with the loss by giving to others.  Bless her, she put smiles on faces that otherwise were sad.  In unguarded moments you could still see the pain this woman was harboring.  I don't know her story, but her pain was obvious to me.  My husband noticed too how she drifted in, spread her joy and then drifted out.  We both noticed a great sadness about her.

During one of our heart to heart talks, he brought up the woman with the cookies and said he didn't want me to be like her.  He knew his passing would be profoundly painful to me, however, he wanted me to enjoy my life.  We talked at length about this.  I resisted having the conversation, but he insisted.  Now I see the intelligence of it.

It's been a little over a month since his passing, and although I miss him very much, I am able to smile.  He gave me the ability to live without him.  He made me realize that whatever time I have left in this world, it's not to be wasted mourning something you can't change.  All the crying in the world won't bring him back. I think about him every day, but it doesn't stop me from enjoying a joke, seeing a movie with friends, or living life in general.  I feel his loving presence all around me.  Whatever life  has in store for me, I will be ready for it.  I still have plans and goals to obtain.

I just can't imagine what my life would be like without having had those conversations.  I feel I would be very lost and sad.  It's still not the easiest thing in the world, but knowing  I have his "permission" to live has made my life so much more comfortable.

So my advise to you is to open yourself to your loved one and make sure they know how you feel, and when they speak to you, listen.  When you decide to marry or just be an official couple, you should have conversations about what you expect from each other, if you will have children and how to raise them, final arrangements for each other, and how the one left behind should go on with their life.

 
 
Picture
I have started a fundraiser to help people with cancer who have pets. 

Some people are lucky enough to receive their cancer treatments minutes from home.  Others have to travel sometimes great distances.  Some are elderly or just don't have the friends and family network close enough to them to be able to help. 

Most cancer patients are completely tapped for funds for anything extra.  The incomes are dwindling and the bills remain the same or increase, even after they have cut corners by doing without things they used to enjoy.

As the person becomes less active the family pet reassures their owner that no one could care for them more.  The pet gives comfort, companionship and of course unconditional love.  When the owner must travel for treatment, it's not likely the pet will go along.  The better option is to board them, if no one is available to look in on them a few times a day and feed them.  The costs for boarding are high when you are on a limited budget.  What happens to these pets?  Are they relinquished to a shelter? 

The pet may not understand that the separation is temporary, but the cancer patient goes on to the treatment knowing that when they return the same loving eyes will meet them.  Imagine having to leave for several days for treatment knowing your companion was going to be euthanized, merely because you couldn't find someone to care for them, sometimes on very short notice. 

What I hope this fund raiser will do is help defray the costs of boarding for those in that situation.  There would be a short form to fill out and then the money would be transferred to the facility where the pet was to cared for.  These are not long term solutions.  This is meant to be used for last minute, emergency, short term funding.  At this time the donations are not tax deductible but I hope in the future to become a non profit or team with one. 

Every little bit helps!  I have taken steps to ensure every penny will be accounted for at any given time.  Please give generously. 

 
 
Picture
You have done a lot of research while writing your book.  You are no stranger to the grueling task.  So now you have published and the book needs exposure.  Back to researching!

Promoting your book is the most important thing at the time you  publish and ever after.  It is a never ending process as long as you want sales.  Number one piece of advice is to find your target audience!  Don't be the annoying person in the grocery store who flashes around pictures of their kids/dogs to a bunch of people who could care less.

You might want to start with googling a book similar to yours that is doing well and see where it is promoted.   Ask yourself why they chose these sites.  If you have a fantasy book, chances are you wouldn't want to advertise on a site for nutritional health.  Many resources are to be found just by spending a little time surfing.
I have found that just researching words such as 'erotic fiction reviews' have uncovered resources to contact.

It is time consuming, boring, and not always fruitful sometimes.  The worse part of it is you may never know even when you get a sale, that any particular website was instrumental in helping to get that sale. 

Work on your blurb as well.  Nothing kills a book faster than a boring blurb.  You are a writer!  You can write a blurb that will entice the reader to want to find out more about your book.  It should give enough information and be several sentences long without revealing the whole book.  Leave a question in their mind, or a hint at a situation in the book.  What was it about the last blurb you read that made you want to read the book?

When you google your name or book title every instance should have something in common.  Become part of online communities dealing with your subject matter and post often, don't pass up a chance to bring up your writing.  Enter contests for book covers!  I know of more than one where a book cover has made me want to read a book. 

The bottom line is, unless you are lucky enough to have a promoter, it is part of the job.  You won't sell a book without letting people know about it.  The more exposure you have the better.  The same goes for which sites you do interviews and blog tours.  Be smart about your choices.  


 
 
There are so many fabulous books to read!  I enjoy books from several genres and the time I need to read everything I want is not available to me.  Most of us are in the same position.  If we are lucky enough to have full time jobs, and a household full of people to feed, do laundry for, and run those kids to soccer practice, then that leaves little time to read, or write for that matter.

I am finding that if I don't take time to pursue the things I like to do, I will lose myself.  It's very important that doesn't happen.  Sometimes you have to take a step back and draw in a breath.  Reading and/or writing is a stress reliever for me.  I have to make time for it.  The other solution I have been looking into is Reki.

Reiki is a Japanese technique for stress reduction and relaxation that also promotes healing.  It's also something else to work into your busy schedule, but I'm willing to make time for this because of the value of the benefits.  Learning it will take up the time.  I appears that once you learn it, you can even use it on yourself.  The video I watched only took minutes to perform a self healing.

The important thing is that we take time to do something for ourselves.  It's not selfish, it makes sense.  My biggest problem is that my work schedule is sporadic.  Structure is VERY important in retaining your sanity.  From the time you are born structure plays an important part in your life.  The calmest babies are ones that get feed at a certain time and sleep at a certain time.  Routines, as boring as that might seem, are important.  That doesn't mean you can vary things once in awhile, but knowing what comes next keeps you centered.  It's nearly impossible to plan every minute of every day, but having a plan is just as important.

I planned to do a blog every day, and it wasn't happening.  Now I named it Yezall's Occasional Blog and the relief was instant.  When I have something to say, you'll hear it.  In the meantime I hope you read the free stories here or catch the interviews of the great authors featured.  Don't forget to check out the Build your Vocabulary section!  If you do have time to read, please think about one of my books in the Books
 
 
What a silly question...the obvious answer is, to keep the voices quiet.  I have talked about my muse  often.  I'm really not kidding when I say she is relentless and fickle.  Hanging around until a random overheard conversation or unusual sight catches her attention, I can feel her start to work.  Nagging in her shrill little voice, 'What if this? What if that?'

As the story takes on life and the plot forms, the various characters start to talk to me as well.  Long before a word is typed they are letting me know who they are and what they would like to do.  The story starts to take shape after a few false starts.  The situations are played with several alternative endings.  When it clicks I know, because Ms Muse smiles and nods her head... 

Suddenly I am writing feverishly! The ideas are reaching the Word document!  I'm in the middle of a great scene... the characters are poised and waiting to be heard.  I look around and find Ms Muse has left the building!  Really? Really, Ms Thang Muse???  The characters and I all throw up our hands and sigh heavily.

We all know she is off laughing at us somewhere...  I start surfing the internet to see if one can fire a muse.  My characters start acting erratically.  I try to talk to them , "Look, we can do thins with out her."  I write a few lines and turn to look at them.  One is rolling their eyes, another has both hands over their face.   I hear shouts of  "Oh My God!  I would never say that!"  I go back to surfing the net.  Turns out we can't fire her...


I get totally distracted by Facebook.  Like this, heart that, share this, post that.  I feel a tap on my shoulder...Ms Muse!  You're back!  We start again...but in the back of my mind I make a mental note: So we can't fire her...but can we kill her?