Ah, the holiday that makes us appreciative of short-order cooks.
I look forward to Thanksgiving because I get to cook my old favorites and experiment on new creations.
In a former life, or a potential career, I might have been a chef. But other pursuits fit me better before I could gain traction with the chemistry and alchemy of food preparation. For the things you eat heals or harms. It's interesting to find out what foods will help people lose weight, cure illness and what combinations taste best.
Ahhh... alas... I now only give my family the pleasure of my culinary skills.
But there is one other thing that I swear makes the food taste better.
Don't laugh at me at the absurdity─laugh at the truth of it.
Know what that thing is?
You may not believe me but...
I've been saying this prayer before meals for a long time and each time I do, the food always tastes better.
Now, I'm not going to go so far as saying that blessing the food brings down the angels and makes miracles over prayed over plates. But what I will tell you is that showing your "thanks" to whatever you consume shows respect and stops a person for a moment to be grateful.
Gratefulness is the ingredient that tacks on another star even for mediocre meals. Gratefulness makes food taste better.
With that said, I have included the prayer that I say over that which I consume so that you too will be able to include the import spice of a flavorful life. (See below)
For Those Who Are New:
I won the SUMMER READING HAMPER Sweepstakes and was given a boat load of books!
Normally, I only review books that I want to shove in your face (meaning, I recommend them and want to talk about them with you), but since the goal was to get my review and buy more of the authors books, I am at least keeping to that expectation.
It's not really an expectation, it's a hope. The authors hope I'll like the books and buy more or give them a good review.
I will do what I can to give a review on Amazon but because of their freaky review policy I'm a bit turned off to write reviews for Amazon at this time. Though, I will try.
I'm posting reviews here on my blog but I plan on only reviewing the "shove in your face" books on Goodreads. Because it's called GOODREADS not badreads.
If you want to read my reviews of books I've already done click the button below.
You can also hit "Book Review" under Categories in the right hand bar and riffle through a boat load of books I recommend for your reading pleasure!
For Those Who Have Been Here Before
Scroll Down to the Next Image to See This Month's Reviews!
Each book & author is given a chance no matter the genre. Beware, I like many genres, but there are some I gravitate more than others. Those with a paranormal, romance, sy-fy, fantasy or contemporary flavor will attract me first.
Then there's the book cover.
If I find the cover intriguing, I'm going to open the book.
However, the blurb is also considered.
Slow as I read, the books I really like are ones finished in a day or two.
What I consider books I can recommend are books that interest me.
Take in mind, if I was not able to finish the book my tastes are eclectic.
With all the different distractions of t.v., other books, games, and various activities for fun & pleasure, if a book is put down it doesn't mean the story is bad. It just means I was not interested in it and I explain why in my reviews.
With that said, I have a few I can recommend!
Books I Will Shove in Your Face!
(Because I love them so much and will talk about them)
A Heaven for Taosters
Nicholas C. Rossis
Detective Mika Pensive has a new partner. He's hot. Smart. Funny. And an android.
Set in the near future, A Heaven for Toasters is more than a sci-fi crime adventure with plenty of romance and wit. It's the book that will make you look at your toaster in a whole new way.
I Will Not Apologize For Wanting My Own Sexdroid!
Robots, Androids and clones, OH MY!
Take note that the cover on my kindle is the one above.
There seems to be a newer cover on Amazon and I agree with the change. It's of a male body instead of two people kissing, (in which you can't really tell it's two people kissing on the thumbnail) it just looks like some weird effect.
The description on Amazon is somewhat lacking, so I'll give you my own.
Detective Mika Pensive finds herself the suspect and intended victim of an explosive hover-craft murder. While she and her new, android partner, Leo, look for clues and search a bizarre island where cloning is legal, Mika discovers how lifelike Leo can be. As the two grow close, they unravel a scheme that endangers all humanity.
Hey, it's my first try, I know I could improve on it. But this one was a five minute effort.
While I may want to rewrite the blurb for the author, the story was perfect! Engaging even though I was going...
Another detective story?
I fully enjoyed this off the cuffs adventure.
I would have like to have other cover grace my kindle though. This cover (above) didn't make me want to pick up the book, the title did.
So let me go a little more in-depth as to why I liked this story.
This could be a series.
I want it to be a series.
Please let it be a series.
Dam it! I'm writing the author and demanding a 5 book contract.
I WANT TO SEE MORE!
So, yeah, there's that book.
Books That I Can Recommend:
But didn't love
The relationship was over long before it ended, so when her boyfriend dumps her, Kristy craves a change in life. Kristy's best friend, Sherry, is into the BDSM scene, and on a whim and a bet, Kristy finds herself in the playroom at an exclusive club.
A disguised Dom named Master Jay uses sensation play and a piece of silk to help her discover the world of kink. She finds it enjoyable and addictive, but what she doesn't know is that Master Jay is really Jake, a much younger man to whom she's strongly attracted.
For the past couple of years, Jake quietly watched Kristy in his gym. He doesn't care that she's older than him; he wants her. When the virgin BDSM sub he's hired to train ends up being Kristy, Jake almost falls apart.
During the scene they play at the club, he fantasizes about getting her into restraints in his own playroom. But Kristy is shocked when she learns that the two men she desires are one and the same. Can Kristy who's led a vanilla sex life, and Jake, who knows nothing but kink, find a future together?
I like what the author states in the description here:
For mature audiences 18+
A note from the author:
BDSM is variable; it's not black and white, it's not always deep and dark. It's whatever the participants want it to be, it's individual, and there is no "right" way to do it - as long as it's SSC (safe/sane/consensual).
I've done my research. I've been to clubs, private play parties, demonstrations, forums, workshops, conventions, and conferences on the subject of kink/BDSM.
Don't let what you think you know about the lifestyle, or what you've read in novels affect your thoughts on the subject. Be open-minded.
Though a little on the preachy side, I agree.
I only liked this book.
Because there were no separations between scene changes. It cause me confusion.
There were also places where the story jumped unexpectedly from a scene.
I call this the Dumas.
Let me explain...
In the three musketeer's (the original version of the book) our hero's are fighting in England a top a roof.
*Turn the page.*
Our heroes are now running from the French army on the ground.
Just like this kitten... the reader is left hanging.
Prying invisible pages to catch up on how they got from England to France in a span of a not forthwith paragraph truly makes the reader wonder... did a page go missing?
It makes no sense.
Truth be told...
Dumas forgot where the hell he was in his writing─mid paragraph.
I guess he was the type to stop, come back weeks later and just keep going without checking where he was in the story.
"That's what editors are for!"
The Dumas happens when an author stops and starts and forgets what was happening in the scene and picks up where they left off, just not in the right place.
That, my dear, is a Dumas.
Or Dum Ass.
Hey dumass, you forgot a few scenes.
Write them back in.
This brought me out of the book in places. Soooooo.... Laci Paige has no editor or the worst editor ever. I vote no editor. Nor does Laci re-read her own book aloud after edits.
Despite the Dumas, the story wasn't bad. I liked the characters and it veered away from expectation enough to be a pleasant surprise. The hidden identity was actually done very well and the momentum didn't flag afterwards. Our heroine wasn't stupid and had real issues.
But the writing itself didn't capture me.
There are too many talented authors in the BDSM genre that I'd go to first. Being Elizabeth SaFluer and Joey Hill. I think I'll stick to them because...
Research does not make you a great writer. Practice does.
The practice of writing that is.
However, glutton for punishment is my kink, so I'll be giving Laci Paige another chance.
Books that Weren't For Me
Please take the tile of this section seriously. These books ARE for someone else. Just not me.
Additionally, I give you the reason why they aren't for me so you can determine if you might like it.
My honest opinion will show if our reading tastes are the same, and I'll pinpoint why you should just go read the ones I'd love to talk about above.
The way I define books that aren't for me... but could be for someone else, are:
I start with the status of the book, (DNF, Read through the train wreck, stopped half-way, etc.) then I give a short reason why the status in a short sentence followed by a longer explanation.
So, let's get started.
2 Readable, 4 Uninterested
That concludes this month's round of books! I hope you've enjoyed my rantings and if by chance one of the authors comes along to read my review, I hope I've given insight. My passion has always been to help writers build better books. Keep writing. You're only as good as your last book.
To all my readers...
Lost, alone and running from the world's deadliest demons, Makayla races to find her mother among monsters before it's too late...
A struggling college student who feeds vampires for money finds herself the prize in a war between two blood sucking families.
I have been working on this story since the end of September (7 weeks now).
Getting the scene list organized took a week in itself. But I feel as though something is still missing. Because my experience is limited I don't know what that is.
So I'm going to use you as a sound board.
Two Oppositions, one is a fake ally
A fake ally other than the opposition
A fake opponent, who is also the hero/love interest and the red herring
A sub-plot character that reflects the heroine
I have a "talisman" that is a knife
The McGuffin can be counted as the hero's mother.
Have I missed anything?
I'm feeling a twist isn't in that list yet there is one, and it's fairly big.
Maybe the plot is too simplistic?
Maybe I'm trying to figure out something that doesn't need to be figured out?
Maybe I should write it and learn.
You see, I can spot things in others writing, but the key is spotting it in my own. Being able to spot it in others writing helps me, but I wonder. I've followed everything Sensei Truby said, but I'm like... isn't there more to this story?
Maybe there is.
Perhaps this is a series and I don't know it yet.
Anyway... I'll try to shake off this nagging uncertainty and tell you a little about this new story.
The premise came to me when a line popped in my head. "My mother named me Chamomile, after the taste of my blood."
Now that I've found the big wide world of plotting, I'm trying to do this one from the start.
Hang on... I'm getting something... it's the three acts. I'm missing the three acts.
I don't know if I can explain this well, but I'll try.
The three act structure─it's for amateurs.
The three act structure is not just for the big picture, it's for universe big picture. I use it for series. And if the three acts turn into five, that's okay too.
If your not growing your rotting.
That's what Les Edgerton taught me.
So, I continue to grow and BLOOD MONEY is the story I believe will help me learn more about genre writing.
And outlining is a world I'm learning more about along with this story too.
Before this novel, I've been writting by a sort of plot-pantsing style. Things have gone okay. But in my hunger of learning more, I knew there was a larger part of writing I wanted to perfect.
Narrative drive moves the plot forward.
That's what John Truby taught me.
It's also what I've believed to my core.
So instead of three acts I'm learning what I started doing to begin with.
The main character(s) drive the story. There is no three acts. Sure, you can do the whole *Pretend there's an excel chart we've all seen, of the three act structure, to fill out here*
Most battle plans never get past contact
So if an outline is the battle plan, and battle plans don't get past first contact (the actual writing of the book), why do an outline?
What a great question!
It's a lazy question, but still deserves a snarky comeback.
Well, if to grandma's house we go, and we've never been to grandma's house, you kinna need directions.
Or were you planning on calling grandma and having her on the phone while you drive and describe landmark features?
But, Stephanie, I know how to write a book. See... *holds up paperback of their own novel*
No. You know how to write that book. *Points at authors paperback*
Every book is different.
When each book is written the same you've officially become James Patterson. You have lots of money, but your writing has no soul. It's the same story gone over with different names.
Those who want to be James Patterson, there's nothing I can do for you. Because what I've learned is...
Success makes you lazy
And I don't mean just money here.
I mean if my hunger for writing better, more, faster, stronger were non-existent, I'd never be able to tell this story (Blood Money). I'd never strive for better. I'd never write again.
So while I don't have an excerpt for you yet, beware! It's on the way!
Until next time...
My blog is a place where I write for fun.
When it isn't fun, I don't write. But not writing my blog would leave my awesome peeps in the lurch.
I don't really want to do that but quality is important and fun is a huge part of that equation.
Each blog post is from the heart and this one is no different.
If you haven't been here long you might not notice that I do have a themed schedule:
First week is what I'm watching, second AND fourth week is what I'm writing, third week is what I'm reading, and if there is a fifth week it's a free for all! AKA, character Interviews, art, video excerpts, downloadable bookmarks, screen savers, post cards... you get the point.
So what am I watching?
That's the issue. I can't seem to get into any of the shows I'm watching to give them a review.
EMERGENCE is the only thing new.
I've watched THE LAST MAN STANDING but that's been on for a while now. I love the everyday scenarios get played out within a family unit. From politics to personal differences, each episode has a theme of current events.
But that's as far as I can muster for a review.
So it makes me wonder...
Will you forgive me for not having MEME teasers and visuals about the latest, greatest show? Can you get by without my shining wit or the rewrite blurbs I sometimes do?
It's not that I have writer's block. It's not that I don't have any more to say. It's that everyone needs a rest. Don't you worry. I'll be back full force soon! Maybe after the holidays, maybe next month. Perhaps next week.
For now, I'm claiming burn out─not writer's block. You can read how I feel about that subject here.
Or you can browse all the wonderful Categories on the right and pretend it's what I wrote for this week!
Until next time...