Reflecting

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Sometimes you need to pause, breathe deeply and look at life from a different perspective.

Nine weeks to go until Book Baby 3 Day….

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A couple of weeks ago, I posted on here about having agreed to take part in an Indie Author Meet & Greet event.  As the big day drew nearer I was a nervous wreck about it all!

My Princess Paranoia head was in control and kept whispering doubts in my ear.

The three day event kicked off on the Friday. When I checked in to see what my fellow indie authors were posting, this triggered another round of sheer panic. I hadn’t prepared enough material!

Saturday afternoon was spent re-writing the entire plan and sourcing more accompanying photos.

On Sunday morning, mere hours before my scheduled slot, I was still tweaking….and then tweaking some more.

Four o’clock arrived and there was no going back. GULP!

After a minor technical glitch about posts with web links needing admin approval, I was off and running. The hour flew by!

I survived!!!

Celebratory prosecco was poured! (any excuse!)

 One thing that did get revealed over the hour though was the cover design and publication date for Book Baby 3 and it dawned on me a short while ago that I hadn’t shared these on my blog…very remiss of me. Please accept my humble apologies, Silver Lake fans.

Bonded Souls, aka Book Baby 3 will be published on 15 April this year….nine weeks on Saturday!!!

I’ll be honest…it’s still being edited and proof read. I have my front cover (I’m quite proud of it. All my own work with minimal technical assistance from my rock fairy godmother) but the back cover is still in the planning stages. My Book Baby has a bare bum!

It’s all the wee finishing touches that take the time. The description for it on Amazon. The back cover blurb. I’ve not even thought about the author’s note yet. Nine weeks suddenly feels like nine minutes!

And how to launch it all? ….online party planning has begun. Watch this space! (must remember to put more prosecco in the fridge!)

 This Sunday, I’m taking part in another online promo event. Well, really it’s Jake and Lori taking a guest slot at an online Character Takeover event. The nerves are building already…..eek!!!

If you’ve a spare hour on Sunday around 9pm UK time (1pm PST) please drop by and see if they say nice things about me.

 Here’s the link to the event:

https://www.facebook.com/events/401206546879770/

 

Vivid Nightmare (flash fiction)

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Music and sunlight fill the world. A gentle breeze wafts by. The taste of salt in the air. Warmth.

Then there’s silence as the song comes to an end….

The music’s temporarily replaced by the growl of an engine. The throaty grumble of an exhaust.

Sunlight glints off the chrome surround of the vehicle’s headlight.

As the next song begins….BANG!

Instant agony. Pain burning like fire. The feeling of flying through the air out of control. The bone crunching thud of hitting the ground. Screams. Mine? Engine roar. A screech. A crushing weight from above then nothing….. no noise; no music; only deafening silence and darkness.

 

Time moves on….

 

Dull fuzzy sounds. Distant noises. Muffled voices hovering around. A clinical smell. Telephones ringing far away. Numbness. A feeling of choking. Gagging on something. Panic! More voices.

A small stab of pain……the darkness returns.

 

Time moves on….

 

The darkness begins to recede. Shadows flicker through the grey haze. Silence. No voices. No telephones ringing. A stillness. An air of calm. Night?

A sense there’s someone there. Someone close by.  A familiar scent in the air. A long, sad sigh at my side.

A hand over mine. It’s firm. It’s warm. The stroke of a thumb. Slow, gentle, movements. Fumbling fingers straighten my signet ring then spin the rings on my thumb. Is someone reading the inscriptions on them?

Bleep….bleep….bleep…bleep…….it continues…..on and on and on…

 

The alarm clock! The nightmare ends once more.

 

(image sourced from Google – credits to the owner)

Support an Indie Author….oh wait…that’s me!

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Last weekend I signed up for an event then had a huge “EEK! What Have I done?” moment. (Well, words to that effect.)

So, what have I signed up for?…….

Takes a deep breath…drum roll please….

I’ve signed up to host an hour long slot in a Facebook event titled “Indie Author Meet & Greet”. This is a three day online event hosted by The Best Books, a small PR company based in the USA.

Having done the maths to work out the time difference, I’ve put my name down for the Sunday slot between 11am-12pm EST otherwise known as 4-5pm UK time.

Cue panic!

What to prepare? How do these things work? How many posts will I need to last the whole hour? What do I wear? (kidding!)

Before I knew it, my heart was pounding and the “inner voice of reason”, which sounds a bit like my mother, was saying, “Get a grip, girl!”

Over a cup of coffee, I plotted out the hour in ten minute time slots – six sections plus a final thank you bit just before the time is up.

Trying to remain positive and calm, I told myself, “You can do this.”

Now, we’re at Tuesday evening, less than three days later, and I’ve changed my mind at least a dozen times about how to schedule this!

I’ve attended a few promotional events online, commenting and entering “giveaways” in the past. Now, I’m wishing I’d paid more attention to how these events were structured.

The “inner voice of reason” is practically screaming at me to, “Chill. It’ll all work out fine.”

The “voice of self-doubt and paranoia” is whispering, “What if no one takes part? What if no one is interested?” GULP!

For now, the “inner voice of reason” is winning this battle of wills but that could change in the next hour….

I’ve written out a schedule I’m comfortable with….but that too could change in the next hour!

It’s going to be a LONG week!

For those of you out there who are familiar with my book babies, there will be big news on the Book Baby 3 front revealed during the meet and greet.

If you’ve time to spare on Sunday, please drop the event and check out my slot. Moral support most definitely required!

If you’ve time to spare over the course of the whole weekend, please dip in and out of the event and lend your support to my fellow Indie Authors.

Me? An Indie Author?….three years ago who would have thought it….

Wish me luck, folks!

 i-love-indie-authors

  

 

The link to the event is below –

https://www.facebook.com/events/360696460969063/

You know that one sound that grates on your very worst nerve…..

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I had a blog post written in my head and then I arrived home….

The Big Green Gummi Bear was in the midst of fixing our electric garage door. It had been sticking, so he was working “man magic” to ensure it runs smoothly.

For what felt like forever, he made it go up and down, up and down, up and down, up and down, up and down, up and down, up and down, up and down… In reality, this went on for about thirty or forty minutes. In reality, in the grand scheme of things, it’s not even a loud noise.

Indoors, I was slowly feeling my blood begin to boil as the incessant noise droned on and on and on and on…. I had my iPod playing reasonably loudly in the kitchen, filling the room with my preferred hard rock music (Disturbed on this occasion, in case you were curious) but my “bat hearing” was still detecting the drone of the garage door motor. In my head, it was drowning out all other more pleasing sounds.

There was no point in complaining to the BGGB or of saying anything to him when he finally stopped and came indoors. The issue here is mine and it’s literally all in my head.

Certain noises can quietly drive me almost insane if they go on long enough.

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There’s a few everyday culprits on the list :- the sound of the vacuum cleaner (worse if someone else is driving it), the kitchen extractor fan, hairdryers, certain types of music (think hard house nation, boom boom boom stuff, clubland mixes) some strong accents and the BGGB’s snoring and rattling breathing while he’s asleep.

There are probably a few more but I’m sure you’ve got the hint. Perhaps you’re even nodding in agreement.

I had always assumed it was me being intolerant even though I am a patient person by nature but then I stumbled across an article about noise and discovered that this reaction to noise had a name.

Misophonia.

 It literally translates into “hatred of sound” and is a recognised neurological disorder. It is also very common, more so among women, and is easy to cope with day to day in its mildest forms.

Now I don’t truly believe that I am any more sensitive to sounds than most people (perhaps I am, who knows!) but, as I’ve listed, there are certain trigger sounds that get on my very worst nerve!

The reaction they can trigger varies from mild irritation to annoyance to anger. From the research I’ve read, in its severest forms, Misphonia can trigger violent rages in sufferers. (The BGGB should be thankful that his “sleeping noises” don’t trigger such an extreme response and that all he usually endures is a poke to the ribs!) Other sufferers can experience anxiety and panic attacks triggered by everyday noises. As you can imagine, this has a detrimental effect on their quality of life.

If “eating noises” are a trigger, one of the most common recognised triggers, then life can quickly become quite restricted.

Doctors aren’t sure what causes Misophonia but have determined that its not linked to a person’s hearing or ears. Research so far has shown that it is part mental and part physical. The mental impact of the sound triggers a negative physical response eg anger. There is no known cure either at present.

For now, sufferers have to learn to live with the condition or develop their own coping strategies. CBT and hypnosis have been found to provide relief of the symptoms in some people.

For me, the answer is usually to drown the noise out with another more pleasing sound (cue louder rock music- sorry neighbours) or, where possible, to turn it off. (To be honest, I’d rather a cooking smell filled kitchen than have to endure the torture of the extractor fan over the cooker- fact!)

Sadly, most sufferers have to just grin and bear it and pray their trigger sound stops before their temper snaps.

Now that I’ve got you thinking….what noises get under your skin?

 For more information on Misophonia visit www.misophonia-uk.org

images sourced via Google

When Did We Become So Timebound?….

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A thought struck me this morning at 7:51am to be precise.

I’d been awake for two hours and one minute at this point.

It struck me how controlled by time life is.

My alarm clock had gone off at 5:50am as it does every “school” day. I had to be in the bathroom by 6:10am so that I would be out  again, clean and shining, by 6:30am to waken Girl Child. (OK, the lure of the hot water jet kept me in there a few extra minutes this morning and I wakened her at 6:40am) Boy Child had to be up at 7:15am to give him time to shower before dashing off to uni.

In order to get to the “salt mine” via the school and allowing for traffic I had to leave by 8:20am.

Even before I reached my desk, three hours of my day had been controlled by the clock.

It goes without really saying that the following eight and a half hours were strictly controlled by the clock as I moved from meetings to audios, a brief thirty minute break for a lunchtime coffee, then more audios and meetings…..sigh…..

Even my evening so far is timebound as I endeavour to ensure that dinner is ready at the right time then, in due course, that someone picks up Girl Child from work at 9:15pm.

When did our lives become so controlled by time?

I remember as a little girl saving up my pocket money to buy a red Snoopy watch. “Why?” I’m now asking myself….

Life’s been timebound ever since!

What would life be like if we weren’t controlled by clocks?

Would it be more relaxed and less stressful?

Could we live our lives keeping track of the time using the sun like our ancestors did?

Would we be healthier if we followed this more natural rhythm? Would we only eat when our bodies were actually hungry rather than being driven by “it’s one o’clock I must stop for lunch”?

I realise that, in a practical sense, we need time constraints and appointment times but what if over the weekend we stopped checking up on the time and just went with the flow?

 

A thought to ponder on…..however the clock’s telling me that my dinner is ready and it’s time to eat!

 

image sourced from Google

Credits to the owner

A New Year Means New Goals And A Fresh Challenge …….

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I’m not one for making New Year’s resolutions but, over the past few years, I have set myself a creative challenge or goal for the coming year.

The only problem with the goals that I’ve set for the past three years is that they have been ongoing.  These creative goals have so far resulted in two blog pages, two (almost three) book babies and a new rock star Instagram/Twitter fan page. My “free” time is diminishing rapidly!

This year, for the sake of my sanity, I’m going to keep it simple.

Completing, editing and publishing Book Baby 3, aka Bonded Souls, is my primary goal but, if all goes to plan, it should be accomplished by Spring.

That leaves me eight or nine months to fill…..drums fingers as she thinks…..takes a deep breath.

My second goal is to write the first draft of a new novel by the end of the year. GULP!

 Now, before fans of a certain Jake Power get their hopes up, it won’t be a Silver Lake book. Also for the sake of my sanity, I need a break from all things Silver Lake however……I’m not ruling out an overlap between the new novel and some of the characters from the Silver Lake tales. I’ve a couple of ideas floating around so we’ll see where they lead to.

On the Book Baby 3 front, editing and proofreading is underway and I’ve started my battle of wills with Photoshop, as I work on the cover design. I’m not quite ready to reveal it to the world just yet but let’s just say my book baby is no longer totally naked.

Well, the clock’s ticking, so, if I’m to meet these goals, I’d better get cracking.

What are your goals or challenges or resolutions for 2017?

image sourced via Google

credits to the owner