Dicey Updates: Comic Cons, New Covers, New Audiobook, New Poster.

Update #1: If you’re in the Houston area, stop by Space City Comic Con May 27-29th (this Friday through Sunday) and geek out with me at booth AA-258. This will be my first 2016 4 x 6 flyerappearance at this con, hopefully, not the last. I’m looking forward to taking lots of photos, hanging out with old and new fans, discussing my favorite shows, movies, games, and books, and debuting my new comic posters. Angel Comics artist, Rod Thornton, did a fabulous job bringing some of my characters from THE NARCOLEPTIC VAMPIRE SERIES to “life”. You can see his artwork on my new flyer to the left.

Space City Comic Con will also be an opportunity to meet some of the actors from one of my favorite shows: Sons of Anarchy. I talked about how much I loved it back in 2012 here. As you can see, I survived the show ending in 2014, though it was hard to let go. *sniff* I’m planning to take the SoA poster off my wall and get the cast to autograph it. That should lift my spirits. *fingers crossed*

Update #2: I’ll also be at Comicpalooza for the 4th year straight, June 17-19th. I reaally enjoy my time there every year. I’ll be in good company with Norman Reedus, Kate Beckinsale, Carl Weathers, and other favorite stars. *Reminding myself to take the 10 Sherrilyn Kenyon books off my shelf to see if she’ll sign them when I see her.* I’ll provide my booth assignment and panel info later. Just know, I will be on 4 panels this year, moderating 2.2015-203 HANDOVER Ebook

Update #3: My first novel SHAMEFUL (taboo) has been converted to my first audiobook, and has already received 2 reviews. Give it a listen and leave yours. It’s available on Audible, iTunes, and Amazon.

This is probably a good time to mention that SHAMEFUL has a new book cover as well. ‘Cause when you know better, you do better.

Hope you like it.😉

Okay…what’s next?

Update #4: I have a new book cover for SLEEPY WILLOW’S BONDED SOUL (The Narcoleptic Vampire Series Vol. 1).

SleepyWillow'sBondedSoul.EbookYes, the book that started all my gory, sexy creatures-of-the-night drama needed an update as well. So here’s the 5th and hopefully, FINAL cover for this book.

Ahhhh yeaahhh. My cover model, Jaies Baptiste; photographer, Tim Rogers; and designer Najla Qamber hooked that ish up. Contact them for bookings. They are each good, fun, professional people to work with.

Are you tired of my updates yet?

No?

How ’bout one more?SleepyWillow'sRedeemedSoul.Ebook.Amazon

 

Update #5: Here’s the cover for SLEEPY WILLOW’S REDEEMED SOUL (The Narcoleptic Vampire Series Vol. 4).

When I first posted it on my FB page, I got a private message from someone cussing me out about the book not being ready yet. *pouty lip* I’m so sorry. I’m trying. I only want to give you my best, and I don’t have my best ready yet. The whole novel is not ready for release yet BUUUUTTTTTT I plan to reveal a teaser for the book within the next few days. Can we call that a compromise? Thanks for your patience and support, beauties. And thanks for following my blog and keeping up with my updates. Love you.

I am sooo sick of biases, stereotypes, and profiling…

**SPECIAL THANKS TO “THE ROOT” FOR PUBLISHING MY STORY

ON APRIL 16, 2016**

Rock ’n’ Roll Isn’t a ‘Nonblack’ Thing: How Racial Stereotypes Almost Ruined My Good Time

I was a bit overwhelmed by all the responses to this post, but it was a conversation that needed to be had. So many folks messaged me that they could relate. I hope I did my small part in bringing about bigger change.

Be sure to follow The Root if you have an interest in breaking stereotypes and promoting equality. And if you don’t, you’re probably on the wrong author’s blog. I am about diversity, inclusion, equality, and justice for all.

Thanks for your help, Yesha Callahan!

**added on 5-25-16** RIP Prince. His death is truly heartbreaking. He was and will always be heavily influential for rock music, musicians, and fans, though his impact could never be limited to just rock.

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A more detailed version of my story (2500 words):

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This will be the realest post I’ve ever written, because it is deeply personal… and I do not care how anyone else feels about it. This is MY experience. MY life. It is what is real to ME. I am just so sick of biases, stereotypes, and profiling, that I am actually going to use my blog platform to vent about it. I am sick of being silent about MY experiences, in order for others to remain comfortable, while trying to tell me what is and isn’t going on in the world through their own limited scopes. If you can’t at least be empathetic to my plight, just because it is not your experience, you can get the fuck on.

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way…

12923107_257309694607300_1577272382701813110_nI listen to rock music. Not just rock…metal. I listen to heavy metal. I’m a black female, and I like heavy metal rock. I blast it as I drive down the road. I go to rock and heavy metal concerts. I get my mosh on in the pit. Deal with it.

Rock-n-roll is not a “non-black” thing. Jimi Hendrix, Chuck Berry, Lenny Kravitz, Little Richard… Hellooooo.

That’s not all the music I listen to, mind you. I love everything, except country, though I support Tim McGraw. His love and diversity message is one that I can get down with, so I follow and share his posts. But you get my point. If you’ve read my books (the opening scene of THE NARCOLEPTIC VAMPIRE SERIES is set to Marilyn Manson’s “You and Me and the Devil Makes 3” and BEST FRIENDS, FANTASY LOVERS is a rock-n-roll erotic romance) or have read my previous blog posts about music, you’ll see that I cannot be boxed in to only listening to what is expected of me: hiphop, R & B, gospel, and pop. Apparently, these are the only “acceptable” genres for me…because I tend to raise eyebrows when folks learn otherwise.

Here’s a middle finger for your box. Obama-big-middle-finger

So, I went to a rock concert last night. And I was pretty doggone excited about going to it, too. Last week, my friend, Ish, sent a message out of the blue asking if I liked Ozzy. “HELLZ YEAH,” I replied. We commenced to make plans to go to the Ozzy, Judas Priest, and Megadeth Tributes concert at the House of Blues last night. “Tribute concert” basically meant the actual artists wouldn’t be there, but some kickass bands would give us an experience that would make us feel like the real bands were. Let me be clear–the bands did not disappoint. They were AWESOME. (Thanks, JudasX, Gigadeth, and OZZ!) Ish had extra tickets, so I mentioned I knew some other people who would be interested in going. I reached out to them. We all couldn’t wait. We posted about it constantly on FB, in fact. Unfortunately, some had to back out at the last minute, but it was all good.

Flash forward to last night…

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You couldn’t tell us anything. We were going to rock out to Ozzy, dammit. We continued to post on social media in the hours leading up to the concert.

We arrived early.

We got in line.

We waited with the rest of the fans because doors hadn’t opened yet.

Then a guy went down the line giving wristbands to those over 21 that wanted to drink alcohol once they got inside. He went down the row nice and easy until he got to us. “Y’all here for the Ozzy concert?” We laughed. “Yes. We’re in the right line,” I said. He said, “Okay,” and gave those of us who were going to drink *ahem* a wristband, and went on down the line of people behind us.

Pretty efficient, right? It would make the line go faster once the doors finally opened.

Cool.

A few minutes later, a female went down the line with a wand to scan everyone for weapons and metal objects. She got to us and stopped. “Are y’all here for the Ozzy concert?” Ha! “Yes, we are. We are in the right line. We are here for the Ozzy concert.” “Oh, okay.” And she wanded us down and moved down the line of people behind us.

Still efficient, House of Blues. Good on ya.

The Hispanic couple in front of us turned around. “Wow. Everyone keeps stopping y’all,” the female persuasion of the couple said, and even pulled out a camera to take a pic of us in the background. “Yeah. I’m used to it,” I said. Which is kind of sad, if you think about it, right? Anywho… We laughed and joked with her about how everyone assumed we should be at a JayZ concert (love him too, btw) instead of at an Ozzy one. But whatevs. Like I said–used to it. Because this applies to just about every area of my life. I am a black author…that writes about…well, nontraditionally “black” things, I’ve been told, from multicultural/diverse characters’ perspectives. And I’m a black female…who happens to be part of the small percentage of us who practice law in the great state of Texas. Ah, yeah. I’m used to people assuming one thing about me, and freaking out when they get something else.

Doesn’t make it any less annoying. Why the stereotype to begin with???

But I digress…

Back to my story. ‘Cause it gets better.

And by better, I mean ridamndiculous.

So…finally the House of Blues doors were opened.

We followed the line up to the door. “Have your tickets out so we can scan them,” they said. Because House of Blues is efficient like that. *thumbs up*

“There are 2 lines. TWO lines,” they said as we approached to have our ticket scanned.

Okay. Let’s get in the other line that’s empty, because…efficiency. Yeah.

My friend, Meggan, went up to the employee in the other “line” and handed him her ticket.

“What concert are you here for?” the gatekeeper asked.

“Um–”

“You’re at the wrong concert,” he said, before she could even finish. “The March Madness Music Fest is over there.” He pointed to the mega concert going on at Discovery Green a few blocks away where Kendrick Lamar (love him too) would perform. We could see it from the House of Blues balcony, and we’d never made plans to go to it.

“Huh? No, I’m here for this one.” Meggan held up her ticket.

He wouldn’t scan it. He just pointed for her to get out of line. “This is not the right concert. The concert you’re looking for is over there. There are two different concerts.”

“We’re at the right place,” I said. “We are here for the Ozzy concert.”

But he had decided to dismiss us and not scan our tickets.

WHAT???

It wasn’t funny anymore.

I was NOT laughing.

He was about to make us miss the tribute concert because of his own biases.

I was pissed the fuck off. We had waited in line and been questioned twice already, to get to the front and be told we were not in the right place and couldn’t get in. Did this douche just leave a certain presidential campaign rally and come straight to the House of Blues to do ticket scans or what?

I gave Meggan’s shoulder a shove. “Fuck him. Let’s go in. We’re at the right place. We have the right tickets.” We started walking in.

Several folks shouted, “Noooo. You can’t.” Honestly, my back was to them at this point, so I don’t know who did the shouting. But I turned immediately and pointed to the Hispanic couple getting their ticket scanned in the line we had been directed out of to go to Douche’s “line”.

“We were standing and waiting in line right behind them. We have tickets to THIS concert,” I said. And I probably had an attitude. Lo’ and behold–I must be the stereotypical angry black woman…because I spoke up and stood up for us to get into the concert Douche wouldn’t let us in.

The guy from the first line held up his scanner, scanned my ticket, saw that it was valid, and I walked on inside the door.

I stood inside wondering what I should do about the way Douche had treated us. Wondering how angry I could appear without embarrassing all black females. Wondering whether it was worth complaining to management and possibly ruining our chances of enjoying what we had come for–the concert. I mean, the first 2 that asked if we were in the right place could have saved us some time if we had actually been in the wrong line, right? A simple inquiry from them wasn’t really that bad. But the last guy–AKA gatekeeper, Douche–his dismissive attitude toward us had crossed the line of decency.

I stood there remembering the time when I was in high school. In a class of all white students. I was the only non-white student in my class at the private Christian school I went to in Greenville, NC. I remembered the time we had gone on our senior trip. I had been a student there since the 8th grade, and I had just gotten to the point that I didn’t hate my classmates. I had just gotten to the point that–though I did not fit in–I didn’t mind spending time with them outside of school hours. Maybe I *could* be friends with one or two of them. So, I went with them on the senior trip to Schroon Lake, NY and some city in Canada.

Even as I type this, I feel emotional about it. You see, I’ve made great efforts to put my high school years in a locked mental trunk. Not a combination lock. A heavy duty, titanium lock with an iron key. But as I stood there inside those House of Blues doors–that I’d had to fight to get into instead of being given the same deference as everyone else in line–that trunk unlocked on its own…and out fell this memory. Along with others, but I won’t share the rest.

*deep breath*

This one’s important.

My high school classmates and I rode in a chartered bus on our senior trip. Do you know what chartered means? Good. Then you know it basically means only the people that belong there are on it. So I was on it. I had every right to be there. Just like all the other folks on there. And we crossed the Canadian border with no problems.

On the way back, however–YES, COMING BACK INTO THE U.S.–Border patrol climbed onboard and went down the line. Just like they did outside the House of Blues tribute concert last night. And when they got to me, they stopped. They questioned me. Just like they did outside the House of Blues last night. On a bus full of white folks, I was the only black one. That must have meant I was in the wrong place. “What’s your name? What are your parents’ names? Where are you from? Where were you born? Where are you going? Where are you coming from?” Just normal security questions. That Mr. Border Patrol didn’t ask anyone else. Then after looking me up and down, he decided I was just some nervous 17-year-old and left me alone.

I felt like shit. There’s nothing like being singled out and scrutinized for…just being yourself. Despite the good time I’d had with some of my classmates on our trip, I was reminded that I was different from them, and I did not belong with them. No matter what I did, I would not be accepted as a part of them. Our society would always view me as the outsider.

That was in 1992.

Nineteen ninety-two.

I, and my black rocker friends (the 4 of us), were given extra scrutiny outside a rock concert last night in Houston, TX, in 2016.

Why???

What exactly had we done wrong?

When will the profiling stop?

*pausing to get myself together*

I am sick of it. Of you. Yes, YOU. Those who say this doesn’t happen. Those who act like my experiences aren’t real. Those who somehow think because Obama was elected, we have racial equality. But THIS was not racial equality. If we had been treated the same way everyone else had in line last night, that would have been equality. If Douche had just scanned Meggan’s ticket and seen that it was valid, things would have been equal.

I don’t want special privileges or concessions to be made for me. And at 41-years-old, I no longer care about your acceptance either. I WANT TO BE TREATED EQUALLY, MOTHERFUCKERS. In all things.

Do better, folks. Your biases are infectious diseases. Your stereotypes are bullshit. And your profiling is disgusting. We are not a one-dimensional label to be stuffed in the tiny box that you think is appropriate. We are individuals. We should not be treated differently to enjoy the same privileges you do. I just want to go to the fucking Judas Priest/Megadeth/Ozzy tribute concert without being harassed or told I don’t belong. Is that too much to ask?

**PLEASE NOTE: My first concert at House of Blues was for the Roologic record label launch in March. It was fabulous. Such a diverse bunch–the artists and the audience. I posted on FB how much I enjoyed the concert. I tweeted to House of Blues how wonderful my experience was. So I’m not the sort of person who only complains when things are bad. I shout positive experiences from the rooftop. I am honestly less likely to share negative ones publicly, but I’ve decided some of my negative experiences need to be shared to combat the rhetoric that somehow the “majority” is being oppressed. That’s not even possible. I’m pretty sure none of the folks that attended the March Madness Music Festival last night were told they were in the wrong concert.**

Will I ever return to the House of Blues in Houston? Damn straight. Apparently, they need to get used to seeing more black faces at rock concerts. I just may show up 10-deep next time. Plus, the bands and bartenders were great! My friends and I had a blast.

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#Valentines~Romance That is Out of This World~Author @Clare_Dargin Guest Post

Hi, Dicey- thanks for hosting me!  Happy Valentine’s Day to you and all of your readers!  As a celebration of this wonderful day, I have a freheart with black outline transparente gift to all of your readers!

Valentine’s Day is celebrated all over the world.  But what are it’s origins?  There are many legends surrounding this wonderful day, however most are centered around at least three different saints named Valentine or Valentinus, all of whom were martyred. The legends surrounding them are fascinating. One tells of a priest named Valentine who served during the third century in Rome. When Emperor Claudius II decided that single men made better soldiers than those with wives and families, he outlawed marriage for young men. This Valentine, realizing the injustice of the decree, defied Claudius and continued to perform marriages for young lovers in secret. When his actions were discovered, Claudius ordered that he be put to death.  Though tragic this one is my favorite, because it is the most romantic and valiant.

Another story suggests that another man named Valentine may have been killed for attemptingcupid silouhette to help Christians escape harsh Roman prisons, where they were often beaten and tortured. Brave, but not very romantic.  However, another legend, tells of a man name Valentine who was imprisoned and had actually sent the first “valentine” greeting himself after he fell in love with a young girl–possibly his jailor’s daughter–who visited him during his confinement. Before his death, it is alleged that he wrote her a letter signed “From your Valentine,” an expression that is still in use today.

But the day we know today was not associated with love in the second and third centuries like it is now.  As you know, today people give flowers, cards and chocolates along with candle light dinners and romantic dates, among other things, to show their affection for one another.  This day became definitively associated with love during the Middle Ages. Back then, it was commonly believed in France and England that February 14th was the beginning of the birds’ mating season, which added to the idea that the middle of Valentine’s Day should be a day for romance.

The best Valentines are the ones that aren’t exclusive to February 14th.  Cards, candy and a romantic meal are great, but showing some one you love them any day of the year is the best way to go.  Sometimes the best way to show love is the tiny sacrifices we do for the people we treasure the most.  I call that Romance In Action.  And that’s what we romance writers specialize in.  All of our work centers on the growing romance between the main characters in our books.  But we can’t just have our characters say that they love each other and end the story. They have to show it, not just tell it.  And they do it by sacrificing a part of themselves in the name of love.

In my latest book Wolf’s Blade, wolf shifter Callum Blake lives out his love for his pack by going after a madman from his own pack who is determined to rule all of wolf kind.  Despite the fact that no one in his pack believes him that this rogue member- Eryx Leva is a threat, Callum goes after Eryx because he loves his family even though they don’t see eye to eye.  And the sacrifice he makes grows when he falls in love with Samantha Dixon, another wolf shifter, who turns out is his true mate.  Callum will do anything to protect her from Eryx, who has set his sight on her, and Callum must protect her from himself.  For he carryies a dark secret inside of himself that could possibly kill her.

The question is- will their love be strong enough to conquer all?  Below is an excerpt from “Wolf’s Blade” demonstrating Callum’s desire to sacrifice in the name of love.  Enjoy!

HRwolfsbladeKeep Reading To Receive A Free Gift!

Blurb:

Samantha Dixon rescues a wounded wolf shifter in the woods near her home … and unwittingly gets drawn into a dangerous game of cat and mouse with a murderer. Callum Blake is on the trail of an evil man who would be king of all wolf kind, no matter the cost … it’s up to Callum to stop him. How can Callum fulfill his duty to protect his pack and save the woman who is destined to be his mate?

Wolf’s Blade

Author Clare Dargin

Series The Paladins

Book # 1

Genre Contemporary, Paranormal, Shifters, Wolves

Heat Level 4

Words 32,000

Content Notes Intense, Extreme Violence, Non-Sexual Physical Assault

Publication Date 12/28/2015

Excerpt from Wolf’s Blade-

He panted as his heart pounded in his chest. The change was happening again. He whimpered as he tried to stop it. He clawed the wall as his fingers extended, turning into long claws, leaving their human side behind. Sweat formed on his brow as he pushed the beast back.

“Hey, you’re up,” Samantha said, walking toward him. “Are you hungry?”

He turned to look at her.

“What’s wrong?” She rushed to him. “You’re covered in sweat.”

She led him out of the hall to the living room. She brushed the moisture off his brow and looking at him sweetly. He smiled weakly. He thought about how she’d rescued him and was able to bring him back to her house single-handedly. Strong and courageous, she bore the will of a Paladin.

She was such a good woman, she didn’t deserved to be dragged into this mess between him and Eryx. I need to warn her. She has to get as far away from me as possible. “You need to run. Get as far away from me as you can.”

“Shhhhh…” she said, stroking his hair.

“No, you don’t understand. Eryx, he’s—” He grabbed his chest, feeling the beast arise again.

“He ain’t coming in here,” she said, soothing him. “I told you I can protect us.”

“It’s not just him, it’s me. I may harm you.”

She shook her head. “You are a good man, I see it in your eyes. I know you won’t harm me. You’re just upset, that’s all.”

He wanted to believe her. He tried to believe her. But could he trust himself since his mating heat had become so consuming.

Buy Links- 

Amazon- http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B019VS3IZK?redirect=true&ref_=s9_simh_gw_g351_i1_r

Liquid Silver Books-  http://www.lsbooks.com/wolfs-blade-p1090.php

Thanks for reading!  I have a newsletter that is free to all who subscribe.  And if you do, you will receive a free gift from me.  A Free Romance Download by me!  Here’s the link- http://eepurl.com/bPDF6D

Author Bio

Clare Dargin is a multi-published romance author. She has written for several publishers in different genres, including erotic romance, military romance, contemporary, paranormal, and sci-fi. She lives in the mid-west, and when not surfing the web, she is hard at work writing her next romance novel. You can find her on Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, and Amazon.

Web Links- 

Clare’s Blog 2 The Haven- http://claresblog2thehaven.blogspot.com

The Embraced: Scribal Love- http://theembraced.blogspot.com

Facebook-  http://www.facebook.com/clare.dargin

Twitter- http://www.twitter.com/clare_dargin

Google +  https://plus.google.com/u/0/113201930657713285351/posts/p/pub

Author Page:

http://www.bookstrand.com/clare-dargin

 

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Author Clare Dargin is one of those sweet author souls I met in the cyber world years ago, and hope to always remain closely in contact with. She’s always been genuine, open, giving, and an all-around wonderful author, person, and friend. Love doesn’t have to just be romantic.  It can be an expression of friendship, understanding, and support. So, this is my Valentines tribute to Clare Dargin and all you readers and “lovers” out there. Love you, Clare. Thanks for being in my life and for being you. Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone! Show love all year round.

Bests of 2015. Dicey’s Year in Review.

Well, we’re at the end of another busy and exciting year. Just so happens I didn’t make President Barack Obama or 12030301_10207987293382989_4000045188758674967_oFirst Lady Michelle Obama’s Best Author of the Year list. None of my books made their Best Book of 2015 list either. Matter of fact, they don’t even know I’m alive…but it gives me something to work towards in 2016. #SilverLining It also makes me reflect back on my bests of 2015. What did I love most about this year? Get ready for my year in review.

Go here for the POTUS and FLOTUS’s Favorite Things of 2015 list. Keep reading for mine.

Favorite Movie. ALWAYS a tough one for me. If you know anything about me, you know I absolutely love movies. I would watch them all day and night, if I could. I will watch the same one back-to-back. I will watch one I hate all the way through just because there’s “something” to like about it. I watch comedy, horror, action, romance, indie, Blockbusters, old, new, black-n-white, subtitled, foreign… It doesn’t matter. So, as usual, I watched quite a few of them this year.

Some of my favorites were Mad Max: Fury Road (might as well add anything with Tom Hardy to my favorite list), Creed (gosh damn, Michael B. Jordan is fine, and he put his heart and soul into this), South Paw (whew…Jake Gyllenhaal did that…and you might be noticing a trend by now), Avengers: Age of Ultron (what do you think I liked about it? Everything), Inside Out (ha! I’m losing cool points now, but this movie is deep), Hotel Transylvania 2 (well, I loved the first one, and it’s about vampires and monsters, so duh), Goosebumps (say what you will–that movie was great!), Straight Outta Compton (’cause I need some street cred now), Magic Mike XXL (yeah, I said it! WHAT! I mean THIS happened), and The Road Within (a funny ass indie movie y’all need to freaking watch!).

This is faaarrrrrr from listing all of the movies I watched in 2015. These are the ones that left me feeling WOW!!! at the end. These are the ones that I would watch again and again. And this is just from my New Release list. Oh–and the year’s not over. By the end of December, I will have my butt in a theater seat for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Crap! I forgot about Run All Night. I saw it so early in the year when I was kind of crushing on Joel Kinnaman (from The Killing and Robocop) so… Wait. Selma was damn good too. I saw that sometime around January. Geez…how do I choose ONE favorite?

Which oMad Maxf these entertained me all the way through, left me feeling great afterwards, and I’ve watched it more than once already? I’ve seen Magic Mike, Mad Max, and The Road Within three times each. Has to be one of these.

You know what? I’m going to go with the first movie that popped into my head when I sat down to do this list. When I heard this movie was coming out, I got excited immediately–and that was in 2010. Not only was I a big fan of Mel Gibson’s version, but when I saw who was cast as Max in the 2015 version–SOLD. I waited and waited for 5 years, stealing glimpses of promotional posters and leaked vids here and there. Even with all the build-up and anticipation, it did not disappoint. It was an insane, high-octane, action-packed ride that I thoroughly enjoyed. MAD MAX: FURY ROAD is my favorite movie of 2015.

Favorite Book. This one’s easier, because I didn’t read for entertainment this year as much as I have in previous years. Not sure what happened, but suddenly I found myself enjoying…*gasp*…NONfiction. So I read autobiographies and memoirs of successful people I respect and admire. I figured I could learn something from them, and I did.

12308921_10208283780754988_1409927075_nThe one I enjoyed the most was Year of Yes: How to Dance it Out, Stand in the Sun and Be Your Own Person by Shonda Rhimes, the writer/creator of Grey’s Anatomy, Private Practice, Scandal, and How to Get Away With Murder. Doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy other books. I just really connected with where she was in her life when she wrote it, and where I need to be mentally in order to be closer to where she is now. Does that make sense? I read it over my Thanksgiving break, and it was just what I needed when I needed it: motivational, inspirational, and food for my soul.

A noteable mention is The Long Hard Road Out of Hell by Marilyn Manson (with Neil Strauss). If you read my books, you’ll probably guess that I’m a huge Marilyn Manson fan. We have more in common than you’d think. I’ve sort of been undercover with this obsession until recently. But I am enamored with the man, the artist, the performer, th11990577_990175531004724_4084347531625430331_ne writer, the actor, the philosopher, the musician, the singer…

Which brings me to…

Favorite Song. It’s off Marilyn Manson’s 2015 album, The Pale Emperor. It’s got the right amount of darkness, rhythm, passion, sexiness, and ambiguity. Deep Six, ladies and gentlemen, is my #1 of the year. I jammed to it like a mad woman while in the mosh pit at The End Times Tour concert in July. It was my first MM concert, my first mosh pit experience, and I’d do it again in a heartbeat. Going to The End Times Tour concert, in case it’s not obvious by now, was one of my favorite things in 2015. *Pictured above: Hubby and I after the concert.*

Other songs that I loved this year: The Weekend (Can’t Feel My Face, Earned It), Pentatonix (ALL of their songs, covers and originals), Demi Lovato (Confident, Cool For the Summer), Nick Jonas (Chains, Levels, Jealous), Selena Gomez (Good For You, Same Old Love), Joe Thomas singing Adele’s Hello… *deep breath* I could go on. I’d embarrass myself even more by throwing some Justin Bieber in there (Sorry and Where Are You Now are hot. What are you talkin’ ’bout?). My music tastes are all over the place. I vibe to what I like, and that’s that.

Just for the record, this is why I haven’t been writing daily on my blog within the past year. I’m just too long-winded. This was supposed to be a short 1-2-3 post and then I was supposed to go to bed. Instead, it’s 2:15 AM. I have to be up at 6:00 AM. And…I have to list about 500 tags from all the name-dropping I did in this very informative post.

I’ll have to schedule this post to go live in a few hours and do a Part II later. I’m just touching the tip of the iceberg when it comes to my bests of 2015.

Good night.😉

 

Thanksgiving = Family & Friends Day. #TeamSinEaters #IndieThursday~Guest Post @KaiLeakes

Kai Leakes is an awesome author, well overdue for some major literary recognition. In addition to her writing achievements, any author proudly supporting #WeNeedDiverseBooks is beyond awesome to me. I invited her to be on my blog today, because I’d like to do what I can to share her awesomeness with the world. Aaaaannnd…since it’s November 19th, what better way to introduce Kai than by sharing her words on THANKSGIVING?

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Greetings and hello to Dicey’s fans and my fellow #teamsineaters/cursed!

Delving into the world of Fantasy, Pararomance, Dark Fantasy, Horror (as some say), and most recently contemporary romance, I am Kai Leakes, the author of Sin Eaters Devotion Book Series, the book short follow-up Rebel Guardians: Sin Eaters Chronicles Book One, current short stories – Love, Lies, and Pleasure: A Brothers of Kemet Story (Romance) and Free Your Mind (a cyberpunk short). Thank you so much to Dicey for allowing me to share her blog for this moment and share who I am and what I write. Allow me to give you my short background:

Born in Iowa, but later relocating and raised in Alton, IL and St. Louis, MO, Kai Leakes was an imaginative Midwestern child, who gained an addiction to books at an early age. The art of imagination was the very start of Kai’s path of writing which lead her to creating the Sin Eaters: Devotion Books Series. Since a young child, her love for creating, vibrant romance and fantasy driven mystical tales, continues to be a major part of her very DNA. With the goal of sharing tales that entertain and add color to a gray literary world, Kai Leakes hopes to continue to reach out to those who love the same fantasy, paranormal, romantic, sci/fi, and soon, steampunk driven worlds that shaped her unique multi-faceted and diverse vision. Kai pic 1

Thanksgiving (or as I call it Family & Friends Day) is coming up, and I want to speak about being thankful. My journey as an emerging writer and stepping into the role of author has been rewarding but difficult. Learning how to take the steps to tighten my writing and create a plan in marketing myself continues to be a struggle. But with having a foundation under you and a support network around you, becoming a writer can be a great adventure. Trust in yourself! I’m thankful for that (my support) and thankful for my readers and followers. Thankful for those who have taken a chance on my writing, and love my books, and thankful for those who’ve gone the extra step in wishing to embody some of my characters in the Sin Eaters series, as well as talking in length about the series. I’m still learning and attempting to get better so that I can reach my goals in my career as an author and continue to bring stories that my readers never forget. Contact and follow me anytime for any questions or to talk.

Thank you and Happy up-coming Family and Friends Day.

Kai Leakes (The Light Always Prevails -K.L.)

You can find Kai Leakes at:

Website: www.kwhp5f.wix.com/kai-leakes

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yJkgUZTDZYk

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/kaileakesbooks

Twitter: @kaileakes

Blogger: http://kaileakes.blogspot.com/

Myspace: https://myspace.com/thatstlphoenix

Tumblr: http://kaileakes.tumblr.com/

Ever feel as if you are not alone, that you are protected by an unseen force? Have you ever caught a glimpse of a shadow in the corner of your eye? Don’t blink! Trust in it, for you are being protected from that wKai pic 4hich hunts and harms.

My ‘Sineaters’ are out in the streets. Namely, the streets of Chicago and St. Louis, battling on our behalf for our humanity and safety. The battle is still growing, the revolution is now!

Take a glimpse in the world of the Nephilim as they fight to protect us all from Darkness, in Sin Eaters: Devotion Book One, Sin Eaters: Retribution – Devotion Book Two, and Rebel Guardians: Sin Eaters Chronicles BTB One out everywhere!

Amazon: http://goo.gl/LyvUc5

Barnes and Noble: http://goo.gl/MIZ2Au

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In the spirit of Thanksgiving–thanks for joining me on my blog today, Kai! I hope you have a fabulous time with your friends and family next week.

“With a Mind to Achieve” #IndieThursday #Author Guest Post @ProfessorWhen

There are several people I’ve never met before in person that I just click with from afar. In this case–waaaaaaaay far. North America to Australia far. But Wayne and I have been “hanging out” on social media for a few years now. And we’ve been having a grand time. What makes him so special–I can always count on him to engage. By that I mean, he doesn’t just drop a “hey, girl, buy my book” message and disappear. We actually interact regularly, if not daily, on Twitter and FB. I’ve come to know his wife, as well, and consider them genuinely sweet people. It is the development of relationships like this that makes me absolutely love the internet. People I wouldn’t ordinarily be able to meet, are just a fingertip away.

So, I invited Wayne to hang out with us today on my blog. Let’s see what he has to say…

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Hello, Dicey. Thank you for inviting me to be a part of your blog. It’s great to be involved.

“With a Mind to Achieve.”

I have always loved the writing process, and I always excelled in my English literature classes at school. There was a time when I would tell people that I began writing my novel in 1988, but I have since found some hand-written chapters that were dated years earlier than that. However, as an engineering technician, and a husband and father, it was difficult to find the time for my “creative stuff”. As the son of a wharf labourer (yes, spelling in Australia is different to US spelling:) ), who grew up in a wharf suburb of a steel and coal town, I was considered strange by many for even being interested in the “creative stuff”.

I have learned perseverence and a different thought process are important! As Dr. Seuss said, “You have to be odd to be nu12202166_10205477211878345_1054290340_nmber one.”

Last century, I only sent my manuscript off to publishers on a few occasions before putting it in a drawer to wait for “more favourable times”. It was a time of ALL POWER to the publisher. I still remember my disgust on the last occasion that 32 of my printed chapters were returned to me with a note saying it wasn’t suitable for that publisher’s list. The pages were pristine and they were still in their original wrapping! I had gone through the effort and cost of sending hundreds of pages halfway around the world so that some publishing prat could move it from his in-tray to his out-tray.

I didn’t give up, and now “more favourable times” have arrived, I am pleased to say. I have now self-published my fantasy novel, To the Honour of the Kings as of August 2011. It is an action-packed love story with struggle and battles and deceit and the loss of innocence …and a hint of magic …with a twist! It runs on more than one level and has some deeper messages that won’t be apparent if the reader likes to whisk through a story. I have had readers say to me “I enjoyed your book. 12202169_10205477208398258_2112933217_nIt was a really good read.” I have thanked them for their feedback, but have sadly thought to myself, “Oh, they missed it.”

My success book was self-published in March 2011. It deals with a lifetime of trying to work out how to actually live a life. We all muddle through in the absence of a User’s Manual. Lindi and I taught personal development courses with a group of friends back in the 1990s, using some of our real life experiences to help others. I see myself as a bit of an expert on balance, because I’ve spent a large proportion of my life trying to achieve it without actually even getting close. We learn more from failure rather than from success.

Susan Jeffers pointed out in her wonderful, life-changing book, Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway, that a plane flying from one city to another is off course most of the time. Multiple corrections during the flight make the difference between arriving safely at the destination …or not. Balance is about:

1. Review

2. Change

3. Find balance

4. Repeat the Process!

A whole chapter in my book is devoted to balance. Sample chapters of both books (as well as some of my artwork and an article on the Dracula Stage Production I’m in) are on my Reflective Bubble website.

Wishing you all, success and balance.

Wayne

Wayne’s Bio: I am an Australian author who lives near Australia’s largest salt water lake, just north of Sydney in New South Wales (NSW). I am married to Lindi, and we have a beautiful, close family – a daughter, son, and their families (including two grandchildren under the age of six).

I am passionate about the creative process. One of my books is a fantasy novel. The other is a success book. A couple of film scripts are in process as well as an oil portrait that I intend on submitting in 2016 for some Portraiture prizes. I run a media business with emphasis on photography and videography and protecting my clients’ corporate identity. I will be in rehearsals soon for a musical stage play based on Bram Stoker’s Dracula, as Dr. Seward (who runs the Asylum where Renfield is an inmate). My Reflective Bubble Creative Arts Magazine website (www.ReflectiveBubble.com) is another one of my works-in-progress. Also, I have recently become the WebMaster for the NSW Fellowship of Australian Writers (www.FAWNSW.org.au).

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Thanks for your words of wisdom, Wayne, and for being such a cool social media buddy! Perseverance, balance, and creativity are necessary in having a mind to achieve and succeed.

Hellooooo, #Halloween. #Author Guest Post~Ashley Nemer #FollowFriday

Welcome to the Halloween edition of my blog.  And a special, warm welcome to my guest author/blogger, Ashley Nemer. She will tell us why this season is especially awesome:

Hellooooo, Halloween…

Hello Halloween and welcome back to the world of mainstream buyers. If there is any holiday during the year that strums up the most fun in scary and exciting ways its Halloween. As an author I look at Halloween a little differently, I think. When I see the kids, or adults, dressing up and walking the streets I see stories coming to life. It is one of the ultimate Live Action Roll Plays that the whole family can enjoy. Who doesn’t enjoy dressing up as their favorite superhero or villain? It’s your chance to pretend to be the Dark Knight, the Man of Steel, or even Dracula.

Of course it is my desire to one day have an outfit hanging in the costume store that is of one of my characters. But until that day comes I will be happy dreaming of it!

When Halloween hits us I think back to one thing in particular of my childhood. MONSTER SQUAD! Now those of you who have seen this 80’s cult classic will either think I am insane or completely genius. This was my brother and my favorite movie as kids and even more of a favorite this time of year. Sadly both of our spouses think this is the worst movie on earth and believe he and I are crazy for loving it. But whatever, it’s our childhood and we own it!

The reason that’s important is because as an author of creatures that go bump in the night we often times think back to our first experiences with those evil creatures. And MONSTER SQUAD was my first exposure. There the big bad vampire Dracula wasn’t a strong sex appeal of a man, he was a villain, one who wanted to kill and slaughter. Wolf man was vicious and could be killed by silver bullets and only changed at the full moon. Then there was Van Helsing, who chased Dracula but didn’t succeed until the ‘virgin’ said the spell in German.

None of that is the vampires and werewolves of today. Those are the creatures of the past. And I think that is to some degree why my vampires aren’t just sex appeal lovely creatures. They are evil, vicious and cruel.

So what kind of goblins and dark creatures do you like to read about? Do you like the old appeal of vicious and evil or the new trend of sexual and honorable? I’d love your opinion!

Check out my website, www.ashleynemer.com or shoot me an email Ashley@ashleynemer.com and tell me what you think!

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What an awesome question, Ashley. *off to think about it*

Okay, I’m back. I think I like a mixture of evil, vicious, cruel, and sexy. They can skip the honorable part though.😉

I’d love to know what others think. Sound off below.

Thanks, Ashley! Happy Halloween!