Welcome

Come on and join author Melissa Bradley as she sets off on her latest adventure...

WARNING

If you are not 18, please exit stage left. While there is normally nothing naughty here, I do write and review erotica so there are links to spicy stuff and the occasional heated excerpt.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Happy New Year And My Resolutions

It's the last day of the year and I am stunned at how quickly the time has gone. Can't believe we're at 2012, the Mayan apocalypse if you believe that stuff. I don't. After the craptacular way 2011 started and ended for me, I have to believe that 2012 is going rock. I've made some resolutions to help me get my act together this new year.

1. Get healthy I know I resolve to lose weight, etc, every year, but the way my health has been of late, I really need to get on track. I'm sufficiently scared to do this. Plus, I will be standing up in November to a wedding on the Maya Riviera and I want to look and feel my best.

2. New job. I really, really need some full time work. This hustling with freelance and no insurance is killing me.

3. Get my writing organized and get out those two novels that have been gathering serious dust in the back of my desk. I want them published and am determined to see this happened.

There are only three, but these are going to be tough and I feel that if I can accomplish them, then my 2012 will be epic.

I have gotten so much wonderful, amazing support and words of encouragement from all of you out there, it has really humbled and stunned me. I think you all are the best blog buddies anywhere and I hope that 2012 brings you all good things, huge success and dreams come true. I look forward to spending more time with you next year and hearing all about your joys, your successes and your troubles. You will always have a friend here.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Reviews And A Re-Cap

Happy Dec. 27th!! Well, are we sufficiently recovered from our food comas and hang-overs? Only 4 more days til the drinking and eating binges on New Year's Eve. Hard to believe there's only 4 more days and 2011 will be a bad memory. I don't know about you all out there, but 2011 was an odd year for me. Bookends with bad shit with lots of good stuff and good friends in between like the cream of an Oreo cookie. Can't wait for it to be over though as this month has sucked out loud.

I just finished two reviews, one for Fright Night 2011, which I liked. I thought Marti Noxon's script really respected the source material. Here's the link. I also saw Sherlock Holmes: Game of Shadows. What an incredible movie! Check it out at The Movie 411

I had an awesome Christmas with my family. We shared lots of laughs, watched our Bulls pull off a HUGE upset of the Los Angeles Lakers AT the Staples Center. Hell to the yeah!! Suck it, Kobe! However, all was not right with my sports world. Our Bears were crushed by our hated rivals, the Green Bay Packers. Ugh! But, my Derrick Rose and my Joakim Noah made me feel better. I hate the Lakers as much as I loathe the Packers.

I got some really wonderful presents that truly were awesome. I got a digital camera from one of my dearest friends, which totally blew my mind. D rocks! He has had my back for nearly twenty years and I wouldn't know what to do without him or my sister from another mother, S, who also happens to be his fiancee. I scored some great DVD's thanks to my mom and my sisters. Sons of Anarchy, Burn Notice, Somewhere in Time, The Wolfman, oh and Fright Night 1985 from the coolest film geek I know, R. In the past he's gotten me titles like Alien from L.A., Attack of the 50 Foot Woman, Night of the Lepus, Them!, Plan 9 From Outer Space and The Brain That Wouldn't Die. I worship at his feet, you know.

My puppy Vegas came through her first Christmas with lots of toys. I mean like a dump truck full. LOL Her spoiled? Never! She has this little monkey that she just has been tearing into and carrying it everywhere. It's hilarious.

My fave part was hanging out all day Christmas Eve with my youngest sister. We always have a great time, but this year we wrapped our gifts together and faced the last minute crowds at the store like troopers. We went to midnight mass at our church with my mom and the choir sounded terrific and the whole place looked amazing. They darken the church except for some candles, then process the Baby Jesus to the manger at the start of the service, lighting each section until the altar is lit up at the last. It's really gorgeous.

How was your holiday? I'd love to hear from you.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah and All Good Things

To all my Imaginarians out there, Happy Holidays!!! Hope you all are celebrating this season with family, friends and lots of good food and drink. I want to wish you joy, peace and many blessings in the coming year. I appreciate you all for sticking with me and being part of my little corner of the blogosphere. You are the BEST!!

To bring a little smile to your faces, I'm leaving you with the infamous squirrel scene from my favorite holiday movie ever, National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. I laugh til I cry every time I watch this thing. I know, gosh Mel, you are so juvenile. Well, it's the holidays and I am in high spirits. No, not that kind, either. That comes later, ;).

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

I'm So Sexy Yeah!!!

Wowzers!!! Imaginarians I cannot believe this, but yours truly has won Sexiest Female Author at the 2011 Movie 411 Awards. I feel like singing, but I promise not to make your ears bleed and dogs come running. To all of you out there who nominated, then voted for me, you have made my entire month and I cannot even begin to find the right words to express the depth of my gratitude. This has done wonders for my spirit, which has taken a beating these last weeks. I love you so much!!

Congrats to all the winners and nominees. You have made this year's awards just the best.

For the entire list please click here. Go on and congratulate these amazing people.

A Ninja Giveaway & ATrailblazing Woman Remembered

Happy Tuesday, Imaginarians!! Hope you all are having a terrific week so far. I wanted to share some exciting news. Captain Ninja, Alex J. Cavanaugh, is having a stellar giveaway. It includes not only a copy of his sci fi epic CassaStar, but...BUT it also includes a review copy of CassaFire, the highly anticipated sequel which will blaze into our solar system on February 28, 2012. But wait... There's MORE! Included also in this stupendous bag of awesomeness is bookmarks, postcards and other goodies courtesy of Dancing Lemur Press, Alex's publisher. How cool is this? All you kids have to do is head on over to his site here for all the rules. It's open until Dec 31 and the winner will be announced on January 4.
And now I want to share with you a trailblazing woman who left a huge mark in this world and won't soon be forgotten. If you have ever seen A League of Their Own, you'll know about the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. Mabel Holle was one of the first to sign up when PK Wrigley came calling in 1943 with his idea of the AAGPBL. She played third base and outfield for the Kenosha Comets and later the South Bend Blue Sox. She even had her very own baseball card and is included in the baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY.

She admired baseball greats Stan Musial and Dizzy Dean and said in an interview with thediamondangle.com that the thrill came from "Playing every day with and against strong teams. Being treated like a pro by not only management, but by your team and your fans. And of course being together with your teammates." Treated like pros at a time when women were not equals is amazing. She made 50 to 70 dollars a week, which was more than her father at the time. Yet, even as a pro athlete she still had to wear skirts, make up and take part in etiquette lessons.

After leaving the league in 1944, Mabel took a teaching job. It was in this capacity where she affected the lives of thousands of girls. She spent 35 years as phys ed teacher and coach at Waukegan High School and was instrumental in bringing Title IX to Illinois, the 1972 federal law that bars sex discrimination in academics and school sports.

She passed away on Sunday, Dec. 11 at the age of 91. On behalf of all women, thank you, Mabel for blazing a trail the rest of us have followed. You are one of my kick-ass heroines.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Birthday Bash Winner And Mel's Salacious Adventure

Sorry I've been so quiet this weekend, but I was celebrating away and having a kick ass birthday weekend. Thank you all for sharing your birthday memories. I loved reading them all from the amazing to the not so great. You are brave for sharing them and I appreciate it very much. So all of your names went in to my Atomic Randomizer aka my Bears cap, and the nephew drew out the name of the lucky winner. Without further ado, congratulations to...

L.G. Smith

Yay!!!! L.G., email me at melbwrites@gmail.com and let me know which of my stories you would like. Congratulations!

Now on to my salacious adventure. I went to a very naughty Holiday party this weekend and we had to bring spicy gifts. In order to purchase such titillating items, I went to a rather perverted little store . This place is one block from Chicago's biggest Catholic church. In fact, I could see the cross high atop the steeple as I walked inside. A bit unnerving, if I do say so myself.

Inside, there was the usual assortment of gag gifts like blow job bibs, penis suckers, finger vibes and games like "Who's the Biggest Slut?" "What the Fuck?" bar cards, and Hump: The Game of Erotic Education. There was also bondage accoutrements, handcuffs, whips, riding crops and restraints. What got me as I was looking at the selections, the song "Have A Holly, Jolly Christmas" came on over the loud speaker. Followed by "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree." I am never going to listen to these songs in the same way again. This place also had booths. You know the kind, back of the store through the beaded curtain and/or swinging door. A few men came in to partake of the visual aids when they noticed me standing mere feet from their afternoon solo flights. They immediately started shuffling around, trying to find something to do until I left. But, I stayed. They kept looking at me, looking at the swinging doors, looking at me, looking at...You get the picture. Finally I just stared right back at them and said "Go ahead, I'm not an undercover nun or anything." It was a stampede, I tell you. ;)

Oh and in case you were wondering, I bought a riding crop and a sexual positions coupon booklet and some flavored massage oil. It went over very well at the Naughty Holiday Party grab bag.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Happy Birthday !! It's Party Time

Sing it with me now..."Happy Birthday to..." Nah, I won't make you sing. Just come on in and join my party. Alex Cavanaugh kicked things off yesterday. Thank you Captain Ninja Alex! To kick this celebration into high gear today, I've got angels, demons, zombies and of course, werewolves all lurking around the premises so beware. LOL You gotta watch the wolves, they tend to bite and claw when the cake comes out. And what a cake it is. Red Velvet for my sexy self. Delicious, no?
Yes red velvet is my favorite cake and I intend to have a slice. I'm diabetic, but this will have sugar-free frosting, so I'm being partially good. I also intend to raise a pomegranate martini to you, my friends. You are the best! Of course, I'll be careful NOT to end up like this guy below. I did that one year and yeah, it was pretty ugly.
This is a rough birthday this year, but I'm reminded of one my best birthdays ever, which came a few days after the occasion. In 1997, I was spending my first b-day and Christmas without my grandmother and I was depressed as all get out. My birthday came and went and so did Christmas. Then out of the blue, my best friend called from North Carolina. She called me the day before New Years and told me to get my rear in gear and head to O'Hare airport on New Year's Eve. There was a ticket waiting for me. I flew down on New Year's, spent the holiday and the whole following week with her. It was the most incredible gift and we had such a terrific time. I remember that week so well. We hung out, went hiking and just laughed our asses off.

Do you have a favorite birthday memory? A birthday drink/cake? Talk to me. As a gift, I'll select one person to win a download copy of their choice of one of my stories. I'm going to head back into the party and hopefully hook up with a werewolf. ;)

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Captain Ninja Alex: The Interview

I am so excited Imaginarians, today I am kicking off my 2 day birthday festivities and I have the coolest ninja ever, the captain himself, Alex J. Cavanaugh. (Cue the Kermit the Frog yays)He agreed to be interviewed by yours truly and I could not have been more pleased. Though he is our captain and friend, here's a little about Alex you may or may not know and of course I tried to dig out what I could in the interview.

Alex has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and works in web design and graphics. He is experienced in technical editing and worked with an adult literacy program for several years. (yay for literacy!)A fan of all things science fiction, his interests range from books and movies to music and games. Currently he lives in the Carolinas with his wife. And now, the Interview.

When did you know that you wanted to be a writer? Who are some of your major influences?

I wrote some as a teen, although it was never my goal to be an author. I’ve always enjoyed Terry Brooks, Preston & Child, and Timothy Zahn. When I found the original version of CassaStar a few years ago, I realized that while the storyline sucked the characters were strong. I decided to go for it and rewrote the entire story.

Cassastar and its soon-to-be-released sequel, Cassafire, are space opera adventures. What was the inspiration behind them? Any plans to make them into a trilogy?

They were inspired by hours of TV and movie watching! I dug Star Wars and Battlestar Galactica, and I envisioned my own space adventures. Everyone expects a trilogy, but I’m not sure it will happen. I never planned more than one book anyway!

Have you ever thought about writing more hard science based fiction?

My job involves a lot of technical work, and I write to escape. So I doubt I’ll ever dump a lot of hard tech or science into my writing.

What has surprised you most about the business side of writing?

The promotional aspect was more than I expected. And I guess I never really thought about the multitude of strangers who’d read my book. (Yes, when CassaStar shot onto Amazon’s Best Seller chart I rather freaked!)

I know you play guitar and are a film buff, what are some of your other passions and pursuits? Any that might surprise your Ninja Army?

Despite all of my geekness, I’m also a big sports fan. Football, hockey, basketball - I enjoy watching and attending sports games.


If you could take any character from Cassastar or Cassafire out to show off our little rock here, who would it be? Where would you go, what would you do?

No question I’d select Athee! (After all, she looks like Kate Beckinsale.) She has a fascination with fighter planes, so I imagine I’d be showing off some of our best military jets. Actually, Athee is really feisty and tends to get her way, so I’d probably take her wherever she wanted to go. (Did I mention she looks like Kate Beckinsale?)

Music or silence when you’re at your computer, steeped in the world of your creation?

Music! I write while rocking out to the likes of In Flames, Dream Theater, Rush, Shadows Fall, etc. Music sets the mood for me.

What was the best piece of writing advice you have ever received?

Don’t overthink it - just write!

Thanks so much, Melissa - you’re awesome!

Aww... thanks Alex. :) Now for more about Alex and his fantastic stories, you can go to his blog or follow him on Twitter.

CassaStar by Alex J. Cavanaugh
6x9 Trade paperback, 246 pages, Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C.
Science fiction - space opera/adventure
Print ISBN 978-0-9816210-6-7 $15.95
EBook ISBN 978-0-9827139-3-8 $2.99

CassaFire by Alex J. Cavanaugh
Available February 28, 2012
6x9 Trade paperback, 240 pages, Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C.
Science fiction - space opera/adventure
Print ISBN 978-0-9827139-4-5 $15.95
EBook ISBN 978-0-9827139-6-9 $4.99

And for a treat, here is the book trailer for CassaFire, dropping February 28, 2012 from Dancing Lemur Press. I can't wait!

Monday, December 12, 2011

I'm A Zombie

Check this out...I could totally be in The Walking Dead


Jeremy at iZombie Lover turned me into a zombie. Don't I look grotesquely cool? What an amazing artist he is. Thank you, Jeremy! Now if I could find someone to turn me into a werewolf...;)

By the way, my birthday is Thursday and we will party here like it's the end of the world. LOL To kick things off, Captain Ninja, himself, Alex J. Cavanaugh, will be here on Wednesday. Whoo Hoo!!

And let me say that in the midst of my ongoing mess, I am finding incredible inner strength and am seeing how truly super blessed I am in my friends. I could not ask for better people at my six. Now here's a bit of Pat Benatar to fire up your day. She's one of my fave rockers. Don't you just love the late 80's early 90's vibe of this vid? Why it's Attack of the Mullets. Movie script, perhaps? Seriously, though it's simple song with a very strong message. It perfectly describes my new found attitude toward all this crap. May we all have a kickass week!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Puppy Love And Someone To Know

Remember way back in September when I announced that we got a puppy? Well, I have been remiss in putting up some pics of her. So to kick off the week on a good note, here is my cutesy little gal with 'tude, Vegas. As you can see, she's all decked out for Christmas and she has a red and green eye because I can't figure out my camera. LOL Seriously, though, she has one blue eye and one brown. A crazy adorable combo.


And she really loved getting this get up on, too. As seen by her reaction in this pic. She hates getting dressed up as much as I do.


Vegas is a shi tzu and she's about 6 months old. This will be her first Christmas with us and of course, she will spoiled rotten, LOL.

Now, to make up for my lack of You Should Know Friday, I am going to spotlight someone I think you should know today. I want to share with you someone who is smart, cool and just a terrific blogger/friend. Kimberly at Meetings with My Muse is an awesome blogger who supports writers and is an amazing writer herself. She talks about things like how you go about plotting, the passion of writing, books she's reading and all manner of things in between. Her style is engaging and charming, there is no doubt in my mind that you will love her like I do.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Insecure Writers Support Group

It's time once again for a meeting of the Insecure Writers Support Group founded by the awesome Alex J. Cavanaugh, friend to writers and movie geeks everywhere. Here we air our insecurities, fears and other garbage that is just messing with our minds and here is also where we encourage each other, give each other virtual hugs and revel in the craziness we have embarked upon as soon as we said we wanted to be writers.

Today I'm talking about staying true to yourself, writing your story the way you want no matter what is selling, what an agent or publisher thinks is the hot tamale. So many of us just starting out are told if we want to sell, then we must study the markets, see what's hot, read the bestsellers in the genre we write so we have an idea of where to place our stories, how to brand ourselves. That's all well and good, but we also need to remain true to our writer voice, the one that got us into this crazy profession in the first place.

I was told that a first person female werewolf story would never work. It was too niche and too unusual. Female readers would never identify with a monster and well, male readers just don't skew to liking female protagonists. Whatever. I wrote her story anyway. I know a lot of women out there who more than identify with Maxie and I have to say that the men out there who have read her story have no problem whatsoever "liking a female protagonist."


So I want to encourage all of you out there to keep right on with that story you've been told is unsellable or unmarketable for whatever reason. It does not matter one wit how unusual, obscure or different it is. Nor does it matter that the market is "flooded" with vampire stories. Keep going and do not give up. This is your story and it deserves to be told and I believe that it will find its audience.

Now, I encourage you all to click here and visit more of your fellow writers out there. Here's to a productive day and rest of the week for all of us.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Briefcase Encounters: A Review And Some Cool News For A Change

Yes, Imaginarians, I have had a time of it, but while things are still very dark, there is finally a little teeny tiny crack of light. Your continued support means the world to me. I just wanted to make to tell you that I'm not stopping blogging or anything, just have to drop out every now and again to ride the waves. It'll be like that for the foreseeable future, but I've got my head up and I should be okay.

Check this. Oh. My. God. I am Top at The Movie411 Awards for Sexiest Female Author. Nothing like being called sexiest when the world is off-kilter and careening out of control. You can vote here for moi, if you so choose, but most importantly just get your fine selves over there and vote for your fave cinegeeks, cinephiles and fellow wicked awesome bloggers. It's a hellagood party.

Now on to this review. I am very excited Imaginarians, because one of my favorite authors, Alexander Hammond, has just released a new collection of tales. Brief(case) Encounters is a witty, thought-provoking and self-effacing collection of travel stories that will have you howling with laughter and picking your jaw up off the floor all within the space a few paragraphs. Part erudite comedian, part no-holds-barred tour guide with a slice of philosopher and a dash of cultural anthropologist mixed in, Encounters offers a unique take on world travel.

Hammond has a way with language that just leaves me green with envy. His metaphors are true gems that paint an exact picture without ever straying into the realm of cliché or over use. For instance in Thai Tribulations, one of my favorites, he is on board a vomit comet of a boat in very rough seas, hiding up on deck to keep away from the seasick. He writes “Eventually my bladder asserted itself and I made my way to the conveniences, forgetting that I had to pass through the ‘sick room.’ I took one look. It was a Hogarth etching come to life, a vision Gustave Dore would have been proud to have created… People were lying around groaning on the floor beyond caring what they looked like. I regret to confess that natural compassion escaped me in that moment. I immediately forgot my own physical needs and returned to the deck, profoundly grateful I wasn’t one of them.” Oh God, what an image.

This book is chock full of these hilarious, nightmarish anecdotes that leave you with the dichotomy of wanting to never board a plane and yet, also having the unbearable desire to experience this stuff in person to see if it's real. In short, you have to read this book if you get the chance. For more info on Alex and to read about more of his travels, visit his blog. To purchase Brief(Case) Encounters please go here. You can also purchase his wildly brilliant, Tales From The Edge Of Forever here. Both are also available at Amazon in paperback and Kindle versions.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Thank you!!!

I need to really thank all of you for your comments and support over the last couple of days. Things have really come crashing down around here and it helped tremendously to have your wonderful words to read. It is so true when it rains, it pours. To add the cherry on top of my shit sundae, I now have to look for a new place to live. So this means my blogging and comments might get a little scarce. Nothing like unemployment, health scares and no place to live to just make the holidays a happy time. And right before my birthday, too. That's just WRONG. But, as my sister said, in the flood of life, sometimes you just have to decide to float. So, Imaginarians, that is what I am going to do. Float. Hopefully there will be good news to report.

In the mean time, let me finish on high note. The Lovely Blog Award given to me by the amazing Annalisa will be given to these great blogs I just love. They are all very cool people who are a joy to read.

Julie @ Gypsy in My Soul
Eve @ Clueless Eve
Melissa @ Have You Heard
Julie @Empty Nest Insider
Judy @ Judy Croome: Author on the Prowl

Kathy @ Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy
Sangu @ Echoes of a Wayward Mind
Arlee Bird @ Wrote By Rote
L.G. @ Bards and Prophets

Go visit these blogs. They are awesome people you should know. Enjoy the rest of the weekend, my friends. Hugs!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

When It Rains...Plus An Award to Brighten My Week

When it rains, it really freakin' pours. As if the cold and more dental woes aren't enough, now I'll be off to the doctor. Ugh! I just haven't been feeling well and now I can't put it off anymore. So next week, I'll be spending even more money to go to the doc's. I'm diabetic and should go more often than I do, but I am a big chicken and have no insurance and well, that's no excuse. I have to take better care of myself.

Well, enough on that downer note. Sheesh, I'm sounding like a regular fun sucker, aren't I? Let's get to some good stuff, shall we? Annalisa from the awesomely cool blog, Wake Up, Eat, Write, Sleep has tapped yours truly with the wonderful One Lovely Blog Award. Check it out...

Isn't it pretty? Her blog is completely amazing so you all should definitely get to know her. Plus, she's just celebrated an important milestone, 100 posts. Yay!! I am honored, Annalisa, thank you very much. You have brightened my week for sure. I will be passing this award on, but since I am about to leave for work, I will have to do that tomorrow or Saturday. Have a great day, everyone.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Favorite Movie Soundtracks

I'm in the mood for some good music this Monday because I re-watched Forrest Gump this weekend and it is one of my very favorite soundtracks of all time. I love all those rock-n-roll classics, the mood music...I could listen to those tracks all day long, I swear. "Fortunate Son" by Creedence Clearwater Revival, "Joy To The World" by Three Dog Night, "Sweet Home Alabama" by Lynyrd Skynyrd...I know all the words by heart and sing 'em out loud when no one's around because ears would be bleeding for sure. They do put me in a great mood, though. Especially when I'm driving. I tap out the beats on the wheel and it makes me a whole lot more pleasant in the car in heavy traffic. I tend to cuss out the other drivers who get on my last nerve.


Forrest also got me thinking about some other favorite soundtracks. Dirty Dancing is a soundtrack guaranteed to get me going and I own both the original 1987 album as well as the 20th anniversary compilation. I especially love "Cry To Me" by Solomon Burke, "Love Is Strange" by Mickey and Sylvia, "Be My Baby" by The Ronettes and "In The Still Of The Night" by The Five Satins. What a softie I am. :)
I am an 80's child and one of the penultimate 80's dance movies, aside from Dirty Dancing is Footloose. This 1984 soundtrack is one of my very favorite albums. Nothing gets me going like "Dancing In The Sheets" by Shalimar, the title song "Footloose" by Kenny Loggins and "Hurt So Good" by John Mellencamp. God, Kevin looks young on this cover, too. LOL

Now, lest you think I'm only about pop and rock, I do have my big dramatic soundtracks, the ones I listen to relax or to inspire me as I write. One favorite in this category is the Lord of the Rings trilogy. This one definitely inspires an epic battle or two as well as providing some haunting music to inspire those scenes of conflict and angst.
My final choice for today comes from a little known Tom Selleck, Bess Armstrong film called High Road To China. It is one of my most favorite romances of all time. I have worn out two VHS copies and a DVD watching this one. As well as scratched up the original album and lost a CD listening to the soundtrack. This one inspired my current WIP, a pilot story set along the Old Silk Road. I don't admit to this film very often because well, I think of this movie as my comforting favorite. I watch it whenever I am depressed, nervous, upset. It is my cure all, I guess. I never saw this in the theater, I found it in the video store completely by accident. How incredible is that?

What are some of your favorite movie soundtracks?

Friday, November 25, 2011

A Field Trip With Some Werewolves

That's right, I took a field trip with my werewolves today. I piled Maxie and her fellas into a minivan-not easy-, drove to the airport, then flew to Austria to be with cool horror geek, Maynard, at his blog Maynard Morrissey's Horror Movie Diary. If you love horror and anything dark side, you should get to know Maynard's blog.

He has a wicked cool interview with yours truly and a kick-ass review of my wicked tale Maxie Briscoe: Werewolf.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Celebrating With Gratitude

It's the Thanksgiving holiday here in the States and while I am so happy to have a very long weekend, I am also filled with a profound sense of gratitude for all the people in my life, all that I've accomplished and all that I have.

I am grateful for my family. I irritate them, yell at them, tease them and yet, they stick with me for some reason. I love them very much and would not be the person I am without them.

I am grateful for all of my friends, both here with me and out there on the web. I do not know what I would do without all of you. You support me, put up with my quirks and weirdness, my potty mouth and allow me to be me in all my eclectic glory. I love you all very much.

I am grateful for being able to walk around. I have severe arthritis in my hips, knees, shoulders and hands. Have had it since I was in my early twenties, a legacy from my grandmother. Sometimes, it is a wonder I can move at all some days and I am ever so grateful to still be kicking.

I am grateful for my writing. It is my passion and I am grateful that the voices in my head keep talking to me and allow me to create such adventures. I am gobsmacked that I am published and that people really seem to enjoy the tales that spin out of my demented brain.

I'll be in and out this weekend, not sure if I'll post, but I'll be around. Take care, my friends. Have an amazing rest of the week and a beautiful weekend. Peace.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Bridesmaids: A Hellagood Laugh Riot

Hey Imaginarians, before we go any further, Russell, formerly of Chaos N Mayhem, has now started his own new film blog called 1:37 Exactly. It rocks. He talks about anything and everything film, his posts are witty, thought-provoking and brilliant. His style is friendly and engaging, encouraging some really great discussions. Go on and check him out. You'll love him as much as I do.

Now, before I get into my review, I have a confession. No nothing really salacious, although...Just kidding. I'm not about to confess to THAT unless serious money changes hands. ;) Anyway, I have a side of me that is a terminal 12 year old. I laugh and laugh at things like bodily functions and other really low brow stuff. Much to the chagrin of my mother. I can't help it. It's this sense of humor that brings me to Bridemaids, one of the most hysterical movies I have ever seen.

The script is wicked funny and smart for the most part with a few scenes that were really chick flick and not in the comedy vibe. But, hells to the yeah, the ladies went down and dirty and bought the freakin' tee shirt up in here. I laughed til I choked in certain parts, especially the bridal shop food poisoning debacle. I admit, my bestie Nancy and I rewound that scene more than a few times. I had a headache from laughing so hard. Maya Rudolph frog-walking across the street then finally shitting herself is bar none one of the most hysterical things I have ever seen. I can sympathize with her pain. Almost. All I can say is Girl's Night Out, too much beer and El Taco Burrito Palace #2, the mortal enemy of stomachs and intestines everywhere.

As if Maya weren't enough, Melissa McCarthy just blew me away. My sweet Sookie has transformed into comedic blockbuster ala Chevy Chase. She was the most brilliant part of this movie. I watched her scenes again and again. The rest of the cast was terrific. I loved Rose Byrne as the snobby boss's wife and Kristen Wiig as Annie, the bride's childhood best friend. Their constant need to upstage each other is psychotic and great fun to watch.

Bridesmaids, like Bad Teacher, shows off the dirtier side of female humor. That we can be just as raunchy, low-brow and in-your-face as the guys. I hope H-wood takes notice because I want to see more movies like these.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Triple H Monday: Hot Story, Hot Men and Hotter Cars

Well, I had a rotten weekend, spending four excruciating hours at the dentist. Ugh! To make myself feel better, I am bringing the hotness this Monday morning.

First, I got a pretty terrific review for my sizzling erotic tale Nathan's Angel.
Pixie from MM Good Book Reviews gave Nathan's Angel 3 and a half hearts. Whoo Hoo! My first official review for my first ever M/M story. Check it out here.
Second, in my quest to catch up with what the rest of the planet has already seen, I watched Fast Five. This really perked me up Saturday night. All I can say is hot men, hotter cars and no plot required. They had me at The Rock. Yes, I have a HUGE crush on Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. Along with Tyrese, Sung Kang, Paul Walker and Vin Diesel. Then there were the cars...Holla! Oh man, I've got Auto Show fever, now, and it's only November. There are still three more long months til Chitown's cargasm extravaganza.

I digress. Now where was I? Oh yeah, my Fast Five review. Not much to tell, I freakin' loved it. The action sequences were an incredible rush and the car chases high-octane. Director Justin Lin brought the goods and then some. The characters united from all the other Fast and Furious films and they had chemistry in spades, adding to this hellagood ride. Vin makes an awesome big bro, I just adored the brother-sister moments he had with Jordana, reprising her role of Mia.

I found myself missing the snap and sass of Letty, though. Michelle Rodriguez is a complete badass bitch. However, that did not mean that this flick lacked for strong women. Oh no. Gal Gadot rocked it as Gisele, blazing in on her Ducati street racer (I have a thing motorcycles, too) and Elsa Pataky was aces as badass cop Elena Neves. Elena stood her ground with The Rock's Luke Hobbs, faced down machine gun fire and rocket launchers, too. The men were more balanced out this time around by these kick-butt women and I really dug that. I hope to see more of this as they continue the franchise.

Now, for a couple of my fave cars, cuz a post about Fast Five would not be complete without them...

Dom Toretto's signature 1970 Dodge Charger













1972 Pantera Detomaso












1966 Ford GT 40













Did you all see any good movies this weekend? Who or what do you consider drool-worthy? Talk to me.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Saint Sanguinus By Julia Phillips Smith

It's no secret that werewolves are my monsters, but I do love an awesome vampire tale. And how fitting that on the very day Mr. Sparkles and his insipid bride hit theaters, I am reviewing a truly dark, dangerous and true-to-the-blood-thirsty-core vampire tale.

Saint Sanguinus is by Julia Phillips Smith, a cool author who puts the monster back into vampire. It is the first of the Dark Ages Vampire trilogy and it is a hellagood start. Peredur is a Welsh warrior fighting Irish raiders when he is brutally cut down by a spear. Cursing God as he bleeds out, he is visited by a darkly compelling man who offers him a chance at another life. He takes it, knowing that something is very wrong, yet a new life, even one without his beloved Tanwen, will be better than no life at all.

So begins Peredur's initiation into The Brotherhood, an elite group of vampiric warriors charged with keeping the other vampires in check to prevent them from destroying humanity. He is determined to make the best of his new life, yet he cannot forget Tanwen.

This book is savagely beautiful with characters that tread a dark path. They are honest, flawed, yet sympathetic. Peredur is made a vampire not through some evil purpose, but because in a frightened, angry moment he grabbed a lifeline. Tanwen is a strong, courageous woman taking her life into her own hands, yet she remains an authentic product of her time.

The Dark Ages setting is one of the most beautiful things about this story. Phillips perfectly captures the social strictures, the superstitions as well as the danger and daily struggle for mere survival. She weaves a spell over her readers with her subtly brilliant dialogue and lush descriptions. I was right there in the cavern with Peredur and the Brotherhood. I could smell the forest, hear the crackle of the fires and oh my God can she write fight scenes in all their bloody, violent glory. Putting this one down was almost impossible and I so can't wait for the second installment.

To find out more about Julia and her work, visit her blog, A Piece of My Mind or visit her web site.

You can purchase Saint Sanguinus here.



Now, onto You Should Know Friday. Today's cool peep is Robyn Alana Engel from the absolutely hilarious and witty blog Life By Chocolate. Her trials and tribulations will make you laugh, cry and want to eat chocolate by the truck load. I just love visiting her and I know you will, too.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Favorite Old School Cartoons

Okay, so with my nephew's b-day just passing and me buying him some DVD's of his favorite animated shows with names like Kick Buttowski, Fish Hooks and Johnny Test, I thought I would take a trip in the Way Back Machine and revisit some of my childhood cartoons. Here we go...

Speed Racer

Oh my God I loved this show. I was in like first and second grade, just dreaming of the day I could ride in the Mach 5 with Speed and fly in the helicopter with Trixie. If I remember right, my Big Wheel served as the Mach 5. Here's a bit about my ultimate ride.



Scooby Doo

My love of all things scary has its foundations with that crazy Great Dane and the crew of the Mystery Machine. I wanted to hunt ghosts and monsters with the gang. Then when I got older and realized why Shaggy and Scooby were always hungry, I wanted to party in the Mystery Machine. It also had the most rockin' theme song.





Thundarr the Barbarian

Who knew 1994 would be such a bad year? I was such a sucker for this post-apocalyptic cartoon. I wanted to fight evil wizards alongside Thundarr, Princess Ariel and Ookla the Mok, whatever the hell a Mok was.



Battle of the Planets

An American version (some would say ripoff) of the Japanimation series Science Ninja Team Gatchaman, this was one of my absolute faves. I wanted wings to be a part of the Whirlwind Pyramid and to fly in the Phoenix, defending Earth from Spectra and Zoltar




The Banana Splits Adventure Hour

This came on in syndication when I was a wee tot and I was enthralled with the live action and animated sequences like Danger Island, Arabian Nights and The Three Musketeers. I also wanted to play with Fleegle, Bingo, Drooper and Snork. And of course who can forget the song?




What are some your favorite childhood cartoons?

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Glittering Ashes by Kelley Smith

Glittering Ashes: Dark Artist Series Book 1
It sure has been a long time since I reviewed a book here at The Imaginarium. I'm getting back into the swing of that with Kelley Smith's YA novel, Glittering Ashes.

Roe is on the outs with her mom and has come to live her aunt in the small town of Gaudium Falls. Here she finds a new friend, Jordyn, who is eager to show Roe the Abyss, a mysterious place with a fairy-tale like magic. Roe, of course thinks Jordyn is off her rocker, but cautiously goes along. Once inside, the Abyss proves more than Roe ever could have imagined, a beautiful and dangerous place where dark meets light. Here Roe realizes she is to be a competitor in the Games, a gauntlet that will test her, the prize being her life and possibly the heart of Dominic, a compelling young man whose family controls the Abyss.

Kelley has created a dynamic and compelling tale that sweeps the reader into a dark, strange fantasy realm. Roe is a quirky, provocative heroine, tough, intelligent, yet vulnerable and insecure at times. In a world that has gone nuts over Bella Swan, Roe is a shining example of what a strong, smart girl should be.

The pacing is terrific, leaving readers on the edge as they turn each page. Smith has a deft hand in creating exquisite tension, capturing the essence of teenage drama. The interactions between Roe and the other characters made me feel as though I were eavesdropping in the halls of a high school.


The world of Glittering Ashes and the Abyss is dreamy, dark and dangerous. Kelley's descriptions are a rich tapestry of nightmare and fantasy that is utterly captivating. As a debut, this is a terrific story with only some minor flaws that I point out for the sake of honest disclosure here. There are a few editing issues, but nothing that really detracts too much from the story overall. I suspect they might have occurred during upload.

I am not a reader of YA normally, but I was drawn into Roe's world and look forward to the next Dark Artist novel. Kelley, you must write faster. :)

I did an interview with Kelley not long ago, she is a terrific writer. You can read it here. For more information on her and on Glittering Ashes, you can go to her blog, Writtled or visit her Amazon page.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Hanna : A Teenaged Badass Bitch

Yes, I finally, FINALLY watched Hanna with my friend and her daughter. I know it's only been out on DVD for a million years or so, but I'm putting in my two cents worth anyway. We LOVED this movie! And I was slap-happy to see a young movie heroine worthy of being called a heroine. My friend and I believe that Hanna actually broke G's heretofore disturbing fascination with Bella Swan. She said to me after the movie that she liked how Hanna saved herself and did her own butt-kicking because Bella always lets Edward and Jacob do it for her. How's that for pre-teen logic? It brought a tear to this ardent feminist's eye, I tell you.

I digress.

From opening sequence to final credit roll, Hanna was an ace flick. Saoirse Ronan is seriously freakin' talented. She rocked it as Hanna Heller, a girl who is the sole survivor of a CIA experiment and raised in the deep woods of Finland by her father to be a multi-lingual assassin. Hanna is intelligent, quick-thinking, fast on her feet and hellagood with weapons. She made me think of a cross between two of Joss Whedon's most famous badass bitches, Buffy and Zoe. If I were the parent of a young girl, Hanna would definitely be a character I would want her to like and pretend to be while at play.

This movie is one hell of a rush, too. There are very few slow parts and these serve as an intriguing counterpoint to all the breath-stealing action. Here we get to know Hanna and watch her figure out how to grow up. I loved the family she hooked up with. Olivia Williams and Jason Flemyng are superb as Rachel and Sebastien, a couple on a road trip with their two kids. Jessica Barden plays their daughter, Sophie. She is wise-cracking with attitude to spare and helps Hanna navigate the realm of teenagers. I just have to say that I think it is awesome that Hanna's first kiss comes with Sophie and not with the two boys they had hooked up with. G asked her mom and me if girls could kiss other girls like that for real and our answer was a resounding yes they absolutely can. And boys can kiss boys, too.

Cate Blanchett creates a whole new level of bitch in this film as Marissa Weigler, the CIA agent who oversaw the experimental medical program that Hanna's mother had belonged to. She has no hesitation in killing anyone who gets in her way and screws people over left and right, lying and using whatever means necessary to get what she wants. And in this case that is Hanna and her father dead. Eric Bana shows another side of his talent as the scientist, Erik Heller, who tried to right a serious wrong by helping Hanna's mother escape, then raising her daughter to have mad survival skills.

Everything about this movie was fantastic. From the stellar characters and Joe Wright's fierce direction to the outstanding screenplay by David Farr and Seth Lochhead, Hanna is an epic film. For G and all the little girls and teens out there like her, we need more girl-centric action films like this. I am so sick of movies that highlight boys and their adventures with girls, if they appear at all, relegated to playing sidekick or, gag me, love interest. I want a sequel to Hanna. :)

Speaking of more films like Hanna...

Haywire, Haywire, Haywire...Only 8 more weeks until Gina Carano stars as a black ops super soldier out for revenge. Until then, here's to my badass bitches out there and more books and movies about them.

**Photo on right appears courtesy of Alex Bailey/Focus Features

Friday, November 11, 2011

String Bridge Amazon Rush & A Whole Bunch Of Awesome Sauce

Today is the big day to help Jessica Bell's debut, STRING BRIDGE, hit
the bestseller list on Amazon, and receive the all-original soundtrack
Melody Hill: On the Other Sidewritten and performed by Jessica, herself, for free! How cool is that?

All you have to do is
purchase the
book today (paperback, or eBook), November 11th, and
then email the receipt to:

jessica.carmen.bell(at)gmail(dot)com
She will then email you a link to download the album at no extra cost!

To purchase the paperback:

To purchase the eBook:
To listen to samples of the soundtrack, visit iTunes.


Today is also the BIG LAUNCH DAY for RaShelle Workman's Exiled. She's launching in conjunction with her Dark C.A.R.M.A. buds Ali Cross and C.K. Bryant. They're having a Twitter party with lots of goodies and other fun, so be sure to check it out starting at 11:11AM Mountain Time under the hashtag #darkcarma.

And now for my You Should Know Friday

Today I am spotlighting a very cool sci fi chick, Ms. Mariah. She has a wonderful blog called Ms. Mariah's Space Blog-yssey. Here she talks all things sci fi from television to movies and cons. I love visiting as her reviews are always balanced, smart and very thoughtful. There's usually some lively discussions to be found in the comments as well. If you love sci fi, you definitely need to know Mariah. Right now she has an excellent spotlight of Tarsem Singh's Immortals.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Seriously Twisted Television

I am absolutely in love with the new show American Horror Story. It has to be the most twisted, creepy, squirmy thing I have ever seen on television. Check it. The show centers on the Harmon family, Ben, Vivien and daughter Violet. They move from Boston to Los Angeles after Vivien gives birth to a still born babe because she discovered Ben having an affair with a patient. Cool drama so far, no? Anyway, they move into this restored mansion that has a hugely tragic and evil past. As Ben and Viv struggle to repair their broken marriage and poor Violet suffers from depression, they must confront the horrors in their new home.

The always excellent Dylan McDermott stars as Ben, a psychiatrist on the ragged edge. He's sunk all of his money into this second chance, very aware that he has Mt. Everest to climb and Death Valley to cross in order to have even a chance at winning Viv back. Viv, played by the super-talented Connie Britton, is broken woman, who's seeking some kind of way out of the black hole her life has become. She hates her husband, but yet, he's also offered her a kind of life line and the glimmer of a way out the dark forest s she's willing to latch and at least try. Violet is played by newcomer Taissa Farmiga. She's depressed, resentful and been forced to leave everything familiar behind. Added to this insanity are Jessica Lange as Constance, the whacked-out neighbor whose mentally handicapped daughter is obsessed with the house. Evan Peters is Tate Langdon a new patient of Ben's who is obsessed with Violet and has his own connections to the house. Some recurring guest stars include Kate Mara as Ben's student lover, Zachary Quinto as a former owner whose obsession with the house has clearly not been cured by leaving and Frances Conroy as Moira, the housekeeper who definitely has her crazy connections to the place.

Now we come to the house. And man, this house makes Amityville look like an over-stimulated kindergartener. Built by an insane surgeon, there has been murder, mayhem, sick experiments and other evil happenings in this house since the very beginning. Every week we are treated to yet another glimpse from the house's evil past. It drives its residents insane when it's not killing them off.

Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk, the creators of the brilliant Nip/Tuck and Glee are the fiendish minds behind this series. I watch every single week and I am never disappointed. I can't believe I'm seeing this on television. It's just mind-blowing, psychotic and outrageously creepy. I can't wait for more.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Monday Blues And Some Damn Good Television

Ugh! It's Monday and I'm already having a bad week just thinking about the shit I have to do this week. I want to turn the clock back to Friday. I hate when the week just starts and already my blood pressure is hopping. Stop the ride, I want to get off...NOW!!

Okay, bitch session is over. It's not all bad, honestly, I'm just whining because that's the way I roll sometimes. And what better day to bitch, than Monday?

Anyway, I watched Walking Dead last night and saw the coolest zombie kill ever. It was gross and hilarious all at once. My favorite kind, really. Picture water-logged zombie and immense dead organ spillage. I have got find the clip and post it. I nearly peed myself laughing. Yep, I'm just that twisted.

I also watched Hell on Wheels. Great is an underwhelming adjective to even begin describing this show. It is savage, visceral television. The production is just mind-blowing. I could almost smell the filth, the animals and the people. Whoever it was that said the Old West was romantic obviously had no clue what they were talking about. Uh can we say "Ewwwww..." That being said, this show absolutely captures that brutal period known as Reconstruction. Carpetbaggers, corrupt politicians, Native Americans, freed slaves, greedy tycoons, gunslingers, families wanting to start fresh, ex-soldiers, prostitutes and preachers all in a roiling, seething mass of expansion and rebuilding. What a savage period to have lived through. The U.S. had blown itself apart in civil war, the social order was in complete upheaval, the president had been murdered and we were building one of the country's greatest infrastructure projects. Not a period for family values that's for sure.

The characters are incredible, the Good, the Bad and the Ugly, each with their own agenda. Colm Meaney is wickedly brilliant as Thomas "Doc" Durant, a greedy railroad man who is hellbent on building the transcontinental railroad, but also just as relentless in wringing as much money from the process as possible. Anyone who stands in his way is brutally run down. Anson Mount is intense as Cullen Bohannen, an ex-Confederate bent on revenging his wife's murder. A far, far superior cry from Brit Brit's love interest in that godawful Crossroads. Chitown's own Common is incredibly brilliant as Elam, a former slave working the line and determined that no man will ever own him again. Check the trailer and tune in for sure.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

First Annual Natalie Acres Boot Scootin' Boogie Blog Tour

Imaginarians, today I'm steaming things up with erotica writer Natalie Acres, who is celebrating the release of her newest title, Cowboy Boots and Unsettled Debts from Siren Publishing.

Here's a little taste of this extremely hot menage tale...

Blurb

Seduction turns deadly when Abby Rose, an agent with the Underground Unit, decides to put a provocative spin on revenge. Her plan to sleep with a cartel leader backfires when fellow operatives refuse to let Abby face her enemy alone.

Abby’s fellow agents begin the fight of their lives. After discovering Abby will use her body to lure in the man who killed her father and their command leader, seven highly trained special operatives cope with high tensions as each man comes to terms with feelings they never acknowledged.

This team isn’t fighting for another cause or plotting the best way to take out their mark. The stakes are much higher. These men will take up arms and meet their greatest challenge as they work together to protect the woman they admire and love.

Excerpt

Abby looked freshly fucked. That’s the only way Ace knew how to describe her. She had a soft glow to her cheeks when she stepped away from the car. Her round nipples were hard, pressing through her thin light blue shirt, and those plaid shorts looked crumpled. Some heavy petting must’ve occurred in the backseat of that SUV.

“Hey you,” Ace said, forcing a smile. “I’m glad to see you’re in one piece.”

“I’m fine, Ace,” she assured him, glancing over her shoulder.
Judson slid out of the vehicle. Ace took a ragged breath. He wasn’t worried about Judson. He wasn’t the competition. He’d held Abby’s heart in the palm of his hand for a very short time.

Ace had been with her for the last five years.

Judson stuck out his hand, “Nice to see you, Ace.”

The others politely greeted Judson as well. By the time Kit stepped away from the automobile, everyone stood on the driver’s side of the Suburban. Kit and Brantley exchanged words, and everyone was introduced. Ace and Brantley were the only two operatives who’d worked with Kit in the past. Their time together was brief.

Thank God.

“Ace,” Kit said, narrowing his gaze. “You look stressed. How’s it going?”

“I’m super, you?” He stuck out his hand and shook. Damn, that hurt. He immediately wondered where the guy’s hands had been.

“Never better,” he replied, winking at Abby.

Ace stalked across the garage and stormed inside. Behind him, Brantley said, “We’ll discuss our plans once everyone gets settled in. Stop off at the refrigerator and grab you something to drink. We have plenty of snacks in the pantry. Meet upstairs in the control room in fifteen.”

Ace entered the kitchen. Abby was right behind him. No time like the present to get a few things out of the way.

She hit the last step. He grabbed her arm. Casey saw everything.

Right as Ace dragged her into the utility room, Casey said, “I got this, Ace. You can owe me later.”

There was a brass latch at the top of the door, Ace used it. He slid the lever in place, turned around, and faced his fears. Time to play, and way past time to sate the need and satisfy the longing. Although he feared after he fucked her, things would only get worse.

“I’m in love with you.”

“What?” she asked, acting surprised.

“Don’t pretend you didn’t see this coming,” Ace said, stalking her. “Don’t act as if you don’t know there’s something between us.” He loosened his belt, snapped it as he pulled the leather away from the denim. Shirtless after working in the hayfields all afternoon, he noticed how her gaze worked across his dusty, hay-coated abs.

“I’m hot. I’m sweaty. I’ve been farming all day.” He reached behind her and turned on the shower nozzle. A matter of convenience more than anything else, the mudroom housed a washer, dryer, toilet, sink, and small shower stall. “And I need to clean up.”

She placed her hand over her mouth and hid a smile.

“Considering I don’t know where you’ve been or who you’ve let touch you, I think a bath is in order for you, too.”

“Ace this is the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard of,” Abby said. “You’re what? Jealous of Kit and now you’re ready to fuck me?”

“You’re half right,” he replied, grabbing her by the hand and pulling her against him. “I’m not jealous, but I am gonna fuck you. Right here. Right now. I don’t care if someone interrupts us or not.”

“Ace, no,” she said, shaking her head.

“Why? Because you don’t want to hurt him?”

She thinned her lips.

“Do you love him?”

Her eyes watered.

“You do,” he said, processing.

“I always will,” she informed him.

Ace felt his jaw tighten. He felt like a blasted fool now. Maybe he should’ve asked her about her feelings for Kit before he dragged her off to the shower.

“And I’ve known for a long time I’m in love with you, too.”

He felt his jaw relax. “Of course you are.” He hoped like hell he didn’t sound pussy whipped. “Yeah, you are.” The second time sounded more confident.

“You should believe that,” she whispered as she stood on her tiptoes and took their first kiss. Her wicked tongue jabbed through his sealed lips. They parted and welcomed the invasion, the overdue moment that would prove they somehow weathered the storm.

Whoa...I think my glasses are fogged up. :) As if this spicy excerpt weren't enough deliciousness, Natalie is giving away prizes at the end of this tour. So leave a comment or three since the more you comment, the more chances you have of winning. For the rest of her tour stops , click here. Enjoy the rest of your Sunday and I will see you on the Flip Side.

Friday, November 4, 2011

It's Friday!!!!

I am so psyched, my peeps. I just received news that Nathan's Angel is the #5 bestseller for October at Amber Allure. Drinks all around!!! Who cares if it's not 5 o'clock yet? It's so completely freakin' awesome to have my story and the word bestseller together in perfect harmony. What's that Lionel Richie song? "Oh what a feeling, when we're dancing on the ceiling..." I am so blown away and considering the story has only been out for 2 weeks? Wowzers! Thank you all so very, very much for the support. You rock!!

On to some more awesomeness, my You Should Know Friday. Today, I want to spotlight a wonderful blogger friend that I just adore, Ella from Ella's Edge . I just love her. Ella is a poet, an artist and all around creative genius. She always has the most interesting posts and opens up your mind with her unique blend of art and writing. She always leaves upbeat, quirky comments that make me smile and give me a lift when I really need it. Visiting Ella's site is like going to a favorite place and giving your spirit a lift. You should all get to know her.

See the Movember button at the top of my side bar? Jamie aka Mithril Wisdom is growing a stache for a good cause. He's helping to raise funds to fight prostate cancer. So click on there and check it out. Go Jamie and go Jamie's 'stache!

Well, that's it for today. A short sweet post to see you all into the weekend. Do you all have big plans? I want to try and hit the theater since this is I did not get there last weekend, either. Harold and Kumar are back, Yay!! Those two crack me the hell up. I'm also having dinner with friends and of course, there's the Bears-Lions game. Yes, I am a football junkie. I even play fantasy football. I can see the eye rolls and sad head shakes out there. :) I wish you all a stellar weekend.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Author Spotlight: Jessica Bell

Imaginarians, I am dancing with excitement because the amazingly talented Jessica Bell is spending some time here with us on her whirlwind tour for her debut novel String Bridge.

String Bridge tells the story of Australian musician Melody, who married a Greek music promoter and settled in. Eager to make her new life work, she gives up her music for a proper career and eventually, motherhood. Unable to bear what she's become, Melody makes plans to return to life on the stage and the person she once was. However, the obstacle mount and tragedy unfolds, leaving Melody to wonder if she's been looking for fulfillment in the wrong place. You can read the official blurb here.

If you're not already familiar with Jessica via her spectacular blog, The Alliterative Allomorph, here's a little bit more about her. She is a literary women's fiction author, poet and singer/songwriter who grew up in Melbourne, Australia, to two gothic rock musicians who had successful independent careers during the '80s and early '90s.

She spent much of her childhood travelling to and from Australia to Europe, experiencing two entirely different worlds, yet feeling equally at home in both environments. She currently lives in Athens, Greece and works as a freelance writer/editor for English Language Teaching publishers worldwide, such as HarperCollins, Pearson Education and Macmillan Education.

In addition to String Bridge, Jessica has published a book of poetry called Twisted Velvet Chains. A full list of poems and short stories published in various anthologies and literary magazines can be found under Published Works & Awards, on her website.

From September 2012 Jessica will be hosting the Homeric Writers' Retreat & Workshop on the Greek island of Ithaca, home of Odysseus.


String Bridge is your debut novel. What was that moment like when you first found out it had been accepted for publication?

I really didn’t want to, seeing as it’s all I had been doing with every rejection, but I cried. It was one of the happiest moments of my life. I was ready to shelve the thing. I’d said to myself, “This is its last chance.” It really felt unbelievable.

What has surprised you the most about the business side of writing? Is there any part of publishing that you have found especially challenging?

The marketing, the networking. It takes just as much time, if not more, than writing does. I also don’t really enjoy tooting my own horn. I feel like I’m imposing myself on people. But I guess it’s something I’m going to have to get used to.

What will you take away from this experience and how do you think it will affect your future pursuits in publishing?

I will forever cherish the memory of all the support I’ve received from people like you. The launch of this book would seem useless without you! How will it affect the future? Well, it’s certainly changed my view of myself. I think I’ll stop doubting myself so often.

Do you write every day or only when inspiration strikes? How do you keep your creative juices flowing?

Only when inspiration strikes. I lose my flair when I push myself. But I love to write, so my breaks aren’t usually lengthy. I keep my creative juices flowing by writing poetry.

What message do you hope readers will take away from String Bridge?

I’m hoping readers will realize that there aren’t ever really any wrong choices in life, there are just different roads to follow. The challenge is to take a step back and figure out what is the most important to us before taking that leap in a new direction.

If we looked on your bookshelf right now, what are some of the titles we would find?

A Marilynne Robinson, Anne Lamott and Margaret Atwood library …

Writers receive advice from many sources along their journey. What was the best piece of writing advice you have received?

To be true to myself.

Aside from writing, what are some of your other passions and pursuits?

Reading, singing, playing guitar, cinema, travel, ancient history, making beaded jewellery (though I haven’t made any for quite a long time), learning how to enjoy physical exercise! (not quite succeeded yet)

If you were sitting in a room full of young girls who aspire to be writers and poets, what would you say to them?

Learn the rules and then break them intelligently!

That's some great advice. Thank you Jessica so much for being here. String Bridge debuts from Lucky Press, LLC. For more information go here and visit the amazing site Jessica has set up for novel. String Bridge is available for Kindle at Amazon and Amazon UK.

As if this book weren't amazing enough, she also wrote a soundtrack for the novel called Melody Hill: On The Other Side. You can check it out on iTunes, Amazon and Amazon UK.

Want more of this amazing writer? Visit her website, Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads or her blog.