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The Schoolyard Tag Game: Author Edition

Unknown-1.pngWe are well into the second week – uh, more like nearing the end of it, dear – of NanoWriMo. Scratch that. Yeah, It’s pretty much over. For those of you who don’t know what NanoWriMo is, which is an acronym for National Novel Writing Month where us writers emerge to challenge ourselves to write 50,000 words in just 30 days. Uh, you can’t be serious. Totally serious. That’s right, a novel in a month! Yikes!

As you write, you earn virtual badges. Badges for coffee. Oo. Badges for procrastination. Ooo! Badges for keeping track of your writing on a daily basis. Ooowee! Badges for writing streaks. Badges for well, whatever. You “Win” the challenge at the end of the month by accomplishing the challenge of getting a 50k manuscript… first draft of course. You don’t actually “Win” anything; although, I’d beg to differ as accomplishing the daunting task of writing a book is hugely satisfying… and if it can be accomplished within a month? Well, heck, sign me up!

This will be my first year as a participant and as far as my progress is going,

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you could say that I’m a bit behind. A bit? Okay, you got me. Actually, as I write this post, I am about 7k words behind. Ugh. It makes the task seem a bit more daunting but it is what it is. As long as I sit down and write something – ANYTHING – I seem to make at least an inchworm’s amount of progress and I guess that’s okay. No, it’s kind of pathetic. Hush, I know. It’s bad. Really bad. But I still plan on cruising along to the finish line. My last novel was a written in four months. I’ve always wanted to cut that time in half but my OCD puts me in the position to keep my words spelled as correctly as possible and pantsing a novel has sort of been my go-to.


Oh, pantsing is writing your book without a planned or mapped outline of your story. For other novels I have in my idea pipeline, I actually do have SOME of them strategically organized; but, for this particular novel I’m writing? NOPE. Not even a little bit? NOPE. Hmm… YUP.

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You don’t realize how many distractions there are until you have to swat them away! I’m generally pretty good at carving out time each day to get a butt-load of things done; but when you factor in the fact that you have notes planned for your story – I thought you didn’t plan your novel on this one – and you end up writing by the seat of your pants. Right. Well, I attempted to do #preptober and outline my story.. and try hard I did! But?? it was pretty much useless and I’ll have to re-orchestrate the narrative. Yikes. Exactly, it sort of gets you a bit scrambled. My book has a lot of layers. If you read Harbor Excursions, you totally get it. It’s got the multi-facets of characters and world-building of a YA Fantasy fiction but in an adult contemporary, chick lit, thrilling romance kind of way.

I don’t think that’s a category…


Soooo anyway, I came across NaNoWriMo a couple years ago and decided to be a sideline voyeur until this year when I watched a NaNoWriMo Tag video. What the heck does that mean? Remember when you were a little kid and you played a game of tag in the school yard? Yeah, it’s like that. Once I watched a couple tag videos I felt compelled to give it a whirl. Speaking of whirlwinds: 2018 happened. So, what better way to get my next book going than with NaNoWriMo Challenge! Game on. I’m fairly competitive so it behooved me to give it a try.

The reality is, I felt quite compelled to jump in and do this because even if I don’t finish all 50k words in 30 days… At least I tried.

At least you got off your butt and starting writing books again. 

Yeah, that too.

nail polish

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The Pineapple(s) of 2017

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Now that Ol’ St. Nick has made his way through our chimneys, left his boot marks of soot all over my carpeting, and there is wrapping paper remnants galore….

It is time for a little spring cleaning. Um, not spring. In the winter. There you go. It’s time to take inventory of all your hits and misses for the year. Then go Shop because if you’re anything like me – nobody is like you, darling – then you MUST have new clothes to clean up those messes!


Anyway, I’m a hyper-organized girl and can’t stand a mess. Zero. Any sign of a clutter-disturbance – and I mean, ANY –

Hippo Brainstorming In Progress
She wanted a hippopotamus for Christmas, she said. Now what?!

drives me batty.  Big-time fruit problems. Like pineapple-sized conundrums. Don’t get me wrong, I’ll help a person;but, if you’re a straight up, drama-atttracting, chaos-creating…. uh,  destroying everything in your wake kind of kiwi,  I’m out. Cluttered home, cluttered mind. Interpretation: I start my year-end inventory process with cleaning up paper, zucchini shavings -huh?- all out-of-order type messes, rearranging furniture -gotta realign the Chi -oh! and trying to figure out how to sell that hippopotamus I got for Christmas….

Ever notice that when you have a bunch of nonsense laying around on that credenza, yes…  or shoes scattered across the stairwell, omg, I’m listening…  or even dishes in the sink, keep talking… that your mind gets distracted so much easier and you’ll find yourself crying on the floor instead of getting  anything done you originally planned and had down on your list. Holy Moses, YES! All because you saw a wrapper that used to house a stick of string cheese somehow shoved in between the stove and the cabinets.

tomatoes-ketchup-sad-food-160791.jpegDamn snack wrappers.

They will put me down every time… 

I ditch all the Pineapples. The what?

The pineapples. How many do you have?

Not too many. But I have my own translation – of course you do – for this prickly; but delicious island delectable. As sweet and wonderful the actual treat can be, I use them as a point of reference for the fails in life. Ah. 

So let’s get to this year’s Pineapples!

For me, my pineapples were, including but not limited to

  • a happily ever after turned nightmare
  • figuring out how to sell that hippo
  • having to start my life all over
  • …and I still haven’t quit those (organic) energy drinks

Not too bad, considering there are people in the world who have it WAY worse than I did; but, nonetheless, there’s my blanket recap. Some pretty big life changing events; but pivotal moments bring change and change means you are growing as a human being.
  I don’t wanna grow up! Who does?! I surely don’t either…

But if you don’t grow, let’s keep it real. You’ll never find that happiness, success, or true love. There’s my “One To Grow On” PSA service announcement!

So I say, good, bad or pineapples, MAKE IT  HAPPEN! Now that I’ve taken inventory, I can make a plan to recover, rebuild, and  maybe ride that hippopatumus around the yard….

He’s growing on me and I named him Spot.


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Merry Christmas!pexels-photo-688019

Santa has made it, he’s delivered all his presents (yay!) and it’s time to clean up. (boo!) Already? All this hubbub and it’s over. Done. Poof. Just like that!

No, just kidding…

We still have twenty-four hours of yule log to watch!

Christmas Eve was special this year to us as we decorated our tree, last minute,

Sneakily wrapped our presents for one another. Last minute.

…and ate Christmas Orange Cinnamon Rolls. Hot and fresh out of the oven!

Enjoyed EVERY minute!

As Santa flew threw the night, and I tried to listen for his sleigh bells, I was awakened by the seasonal sounds of car alarms going off in the city. Ah, Los Angeles in winter. Yep.

But, if you listened hard enough, past the Falcon 9 Rocket of last week, you’ll hear Rudolph and the rest of the reindeer hauling the fat man in red with all those goodies for all the children of the world. Cue song: Here Comes Santa Clause or Christmas

So cliche. Yup. Deal with it. I’m all  Yuletide cheer and a big glass of spiked Eggnog!
I hope you all have somewhere to go this Christmas and plenty of love and laughter in your path! I’m slapping on my Christmas war paint as we speak and throwing on some leather pants!

I love dressing up for the holidays. Of course you do. Especially, when I don’t have to cook this year! Oh, you fancy, huh.

Except, for some reason, these fake lashes are trying to gouge my eyes out. And now that the glue is drying – I use a hairdryer to speed up this process – the damn flutter looks crooked. Oh well, Cruella DeVille, here I come! Wow.  That’s right, No shame in my eyelash fancy game.
Online Sheet Music
Oh yeah, and I gotta make sure I’m pulling out that keyboard for more singing. Oh Lord. Yup, I’m a one-woman traveling band and if you don’t watch out, I will run you over with my harmonica.

Who walks around with a harmonica? It’s in my pocket. Stop it.

And what happened to the keyboard? Oh! That’s strapped to my back. Seriously, no.

Oh, Yes!

And… more Christmas-themed Karaoke? Ohhhh yeah, definitely MORE of that! You can NEVER have too much of that!! Um, I think you can.


Anyway, If you can take the time to volunteer today, do so. Those in need will appreciate it. Also, don’t forget to login to your GoodReads account today and Enter the Harbor Excursions Giveaway! Contest ends December 31st! Details below:

Ooops! I’m being told it’s time to open up the presents!

But first, I’ve gotta hit the holiday head and drop off my own Yule Log….