NEW RELEASE! “The Unfleshed: Tale of the Autopsic Bride”

This is LIVE, NOW! Paperback is coming in a few days but it is live for ebook from these two links.

The first link will have universal carriers as they are added (but may take a little while)
http://www.books2read.com/unfleshed

The second is your typical Amazon link:
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MR8L757

paperbackunfleshed

Roller Coaster Muse

I realized that it’s almost August and once more life caught up with me. Each time it does, I’m reminded of the Ferris Bueller quote, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”

Such is the life of an author turned publisher. I wouldn’t trade it for anything, but that means sometimes my own projects take a back seat. If it weren’t so rewarding I would’ve thrown in the towel by now.

In the last six months, I’ve been involved with over 40 authors within my own company (Stitched Smile Publications, you can find the link here) and seen the growth of almost all of them since coming in contact with the company. It makes me feel proud. I’m doing something for other authors out there just trying to chase a dream that isn’t too far out of reach with a little guidance. We’re by no means making them millionaires, but we’re making them rich with experience and I’m OK with that.

As for me, I’m nearly finished with my next novel, “The Unfleshed”. I had hoped to have it out by the end of July but that crazy thing called “Life” is like a roller coaster with three wheels. It’s so close I can feel the pages in my hand. Thanks to Jeff Brown (A.K.A. A.J. Brown) pushing me, the story is even better than I originally thought it could be.

Other than that, I’ve dealt with my two younger siblings’ health issues. Both within a month of one another. Very scary, serious things that made me take a wider look at my life. I’m only 43. I have an entire life ahead of me if I take care of the one I have. I’ve always eaten right, usually pretty good about working out and staying active…but there are times when Life is just a hag and I can’t push through a day, a week, or even a month without some kind of thorn in my side.

I’m trying to juggle a few things, and while some people think I should not be doing that, those are the things that make me happy. I take care of everyone else, so it is my firm belief that there has to be things that make me happy, too.

I design book covers for Indie Authors while looking for that golden ticket to the big house names (of course, that’s where the real money is), I started my own publishing house and it’s growing by the day, I write, and sometimes I even sit around and do nothing just to clear the cache from my brain. It doesn’t leave much else after my daily duties are done but it’s my little slice of heaven.

You see, I do this because I Love it. Not for the money or the fame. If you’re doing anything for those reasons, you’ll find out on your own how empty that really is. I’m lucky that my personality is such that I’ll never do anything I don’t love whether it’s accounting, working out, filling out spreadsheets, meeting new authors, formatting books, orientations for new hires, etc. Everything I do, I have to love or I’ll move on. I won’t waste mine or anyone else’s time, and most people appreciate that. (Admittedly, there’s been some that would rather push me through things that I don’t enjoy. It never works out in the end.)

The point to all of this is, I suppose, is that I sit back and wonder where the heck all the time has gone. I wanted a relaxing summer by the pool, soaking up rays. I think I’ve gone a total of 4x since the end of May and it’s already August! The pools are starting to wind down and close for the winter (although, hello? I live in Texas! Why are they closed???)

It’s August. And I’m panicked.

Did I accomplish everything I wanted with my writing?
With my Pub House?
With my Family?
With my Book Design Goals?
With my Friends?
With my Personal Development?

Ugh. Someone stop this crazy ride. Just for a minute so I can throw up on the side of the car and get back on.

I keep taking a slow deep breath and whispering, “I can do this.” I know I can do this. I know it because I won’t allow myself to fail. I won’t allow anyone else who sits in the roller coaster with me to fail either.

So here I sit, staring at the horizon of this big, crazy world from the top of the ride. Around me is everything. I can see it. From here it’s small and attainable. Do you know what they call this in Physics? “Maximum Potential.” And every three months or so, I start back at this point. It doesn’t matter what you end the first ride at, the point is that you get back in line and you start here, at the Maximum Potential, again.

Then you ride that first loop! The thrill, the excitement, the confusion…all of it tossing you around as you watch the world whirl by you with your stomach in your throat and your hands in the air!

You take a deep breath, wipe away the tears of exhilaration and pass through the bottom of that loop: Maximum Kinetic energy. Kinetic Energy:  the energy that it possesses due to its motion.

Stop.
Re-Read that.

“The energy that is possesses due to it’s motion.”

Are you busy looking back? Shoulda’, woulda’, coulda’? Or are your eyes on the next turn and twist of the ride? Are you going to be taken off guard? Are your eyes closed? What’s coming next and are you ready for it?

Each loop of a roller coaster is slightly less exciting than those first two. Sure there are a few surprises, but as the car moves, it loses energy so that it can coming to a stopping point without catapulting you out into the stratosphere. A stopping point is a good thing. Because it let’s you catch your breath, re-assess, and redirect where necessary.

Like now. I’m reflecting on my year. What was great, and what was not-so-great, so that I can aim for the future…remember that first gaze at the world from the beginning of the roller coaster? What was it that caught your eye? Do you still want it?

You see that’s where most people get caught up. They see the shiny in the distance, they reach for it but there’s no plan for after they’ve either acquired it …or missed it. There’s no plan for whether it was really what they thought it was going to be upon closer inspection. The ride may have ended there for you and there is no desire to go for another round. You’ve lost steam and “energy” because you burned it off and there’s nothing left.

My life is definitely a roller coaster and I choose to change the ride, not the scenery. What does yours look like? Do you get back in line? What is it you see when you’re at the top, at the beginning, and reaching out?

#GoGetItLife – Why this little hashtag motivates me every day..

It’s a simple hashtag. GoGetItLife. It seems obvious to some and to others maybe it’s the new “YOLO” but for me it’s a daily affirmation of my goals and my direction in life.

Yeah, it started with Theo Rossi. And Yes, I looked into what it was all about because I am a huge fan, but  guess what? These little mashed up words became something more to me. I was already accomplishing things I wanted to. I finished my book. I had a good job. I love my family. But..

(Uh huh..there’s always a “but” right?)

I was coasting. I don’t like to just coast, I want to ride the waves! I didn’t know how I was going to do that yet. You see, I had a fantastic job, great pay, etc…the problem was I was getting sicker. (I have an autoimmune disease that makes me feel like I live everyday with some horrible flu, or strep, or any of the millions of nasty ebola-like illnesses.) Doctors tell me to workout, but there are days I cannot even get out of bed. I’m not one of those people that have a low tolerance for pain. I’m so accustomed to being in pain, when I do too much my body shuts down on me and goes on strike.

I’m a fighter, though. I don’t know the word, “No”. What I did know was coming to terms with this was a roller coaster of emotions.

Work out? Yeah, but I’m not producing tears, sweat, saliva. Ever  tried to workout like that? My muscles already feel like I’ve worked out with The Rock and his massive truck tires.

Watch your food intake. Yes, I already do this. I eat very clean, love salads, fresh fruit and veggies.

Drink lots of water. Duh? I have to drink water or I’ll collapse in a pile of dust because my body won’t produce its own.

I have plenty of excuses not to do something. So I started creating excuses to do something. I can’t drive an hour back and forth to work, sit all day behind a desk, and then fight traffic 1.5 hours to get home. It tore up my back and my hips. This caused a dark cloud to form over my head.

With my body doing it’s own thing, I had to make a choice. I decided to take my passion to the next level and opened a Publishing House. Stitched Smile Publications was born on Jan, 6, 2016. It was the best thing I’d ever done, career wise. It’s not rolling in the profits…yet. However, my team is amazing. They work for the passion of what our company stands for. They give selflessly and treat each other like a real family.

Whenever I start to feel doubt, they cheer me on and now with others stepping in to take on more responsibility, I have had time to (nearly) finish my second book, THE UNFLESHED. It’s my pleasure to show  you the cover below..

Unfleshed Cover

So you see? GoGetItLife means grabbing each situation by the short hairs and turning it into whatever you want. It means not bending to adversity and letting sorrow suck you into the depths of blackness. We’re only here for a short time. Dreams of fame and riches only come when you work hard to make it happen. I don’t care who says money makes the world go round. If your heart and priorities aren’t in the right place money will make you her slave. I don’t live to work. I live to make my time on this rock worth it. No one can do that but me.

In the bigger picture it may seem that people that have “everything” are happy, but that’s that’s just the view through a peephole. Something is sacrificed for having it all. Privacy, trust, love, etc.

LIFE is about fulfillment. The things I work hard for that I earn…I love. I’m down on the floor working with my crew and my family. I roll up my sleeves and take the hits alongside them. I want us all to make it because that means I’ve earned my title and I can honestly say, “I’m a success.” It’s a long, jagged road but I don’t care. Anyone that has gained things without working for it has not earned their stripes. I trust a leader that comes from a rich background of hard work, who can relate to me more than someone that had good luck, or inherited their fortune.

I want people to respect me for my experience, my fortitude, my tenacity, and my integrity. If I can make it to the top of the mountain with those things in tact then I’ve gotten LIFE, and won.

Dress for the job you want

It’s a saying used in the corporate world, “Dress for the job you want”. But I think this is the dividing line between successful people, and not-so-successful people. Apply this saying to everything you do and you’ll reap the benefits.

When you write, don’t write just to keep pumping out content. Write as if you’re writing the next book of a generation. Because you are. Ten years from now, twenty years from now, someone will stumble upon your book. They will judge it’s readers and you by its content. How do you want to be judged?

I have always loved being unique. I dig deep and try to stretch the  “box” until it’s an octagon. In my head I circle the idea like a wolf on a hunt. I want it broken down,  surrendered, and belly up to my whim when I finally come in for the claim.

People that know me often think my ideas are all off the cuff, and some are! But most of the time, I’m not talking until I have an entire plan laid out.

This trickles into my personal life too.  My best friend and I will have a conversation about something bothering her and we’ll hang up. Maybe three days later I’ll mention something regarding the situation because my brain works things out, sorting details until it eliminates the BS from the genuine. I wake up with decisions I’ve made when I’m asleep because I’ve mulled it over through the night while dreaming. 

Dreams are where the best ideas for writing come, especially for creatives whose brains never stop pulling from the world around them. Put them in a world with no boundaries, like a dream world, and you’ll never be disappointed.

So why do all this amazing stuff the injustice of haphazard results fueled on anxiety to slap it on a site to sell? So much time,  so much blood from the quill, and it’s squandered away to the abyss of imperfection. Put your effort on like a suit and wear it with pride and confidence. You never know who your book will meet that day.

Cocoon

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It’s time for these dark wings to breathe. I’ve spent 6 months behind the scenes helping authors with the new publishing house that I built (STITCHED SMILE PUBLICATIONS) and I’m so proud of it and everyone who has become SSP family. I’ve made some incredible friendships from it as well.

My own writing has been placed on the back burner and that’s OK. That’s what being a publisher is all about. I sacrifice things so that the payoff is richer. Because it’s how an author should be treated by their publisher. 

With the house on a smooth even coasting cruise, I can afford to take some time to write more often, and that’s exactly what I intend to do.

So what’s next?

The Unsaintly is getting a professional comb through. It has passed through many hands and I appreciate every person who has given it their love and time. A heartfelt thank you to each of you. This final run will see this labor of love to its full, blooming potential.

The Unfleshed is almost done and being edited as I go because I’m sending snippits to them. What started out as, “can you tell me what you think?” turned into a shared journey and project.

When someone appreciates your work and friendship enough to edit it, that means something. Both of these books are in that cocoon stage, soon to spread wings in full glory. I’d say by May or June. I’m not rushing though. May or June is giving some padding for any “Oh no” moments.

And since I have your attention. If you’re not following my Facebook page yet, you should. I will be giving it more attention as I help new authors, and try to lead by example for SSP.

And I’ll probably reveal the cover of THE UNFLESHED there soon  ; )

http://www.Facebook.com/unsaintlyhalo

The First 90 Days

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The first 90 days of any employment is the grace period. So they say.  It’s an opportunity for an employee to say, “this place is crackers” or for an employer to say, “you’re an idiot”.

The first 90 days of the journey with Stitched Smile Publications, my brand new company, has been a complete dream. Yes, there have been snags and hiccups along the way, but the team I’ve found and put together is first class.

We have, since January,  put out 8 books. We’ve hit top 100 with two of those. And each book has a great rating and set of reviews on Amazon.

The only drawback I can see is that there’s less time for me to write but that’s OK. I write in my own time and way. So this is actually…perfect.

I’ve learned that people want to associate themselves with me or my company’s name, now. Not a bad thing. Just weird. I’m trying to get accustomed to people knowing me by reputation and name. I’m more of a behind-the-scenes kind of gal. I like to sit and observe from the corner but this position pushes me right into the spotlight… kicking and screaming.

I love this, though. I’ve never felt more right or accomplished as I do right now.

Because this is the house that Stitch made….and it’s a fine house, at that.

 

 

Hi there!

I’ve decided to make this site more active. You’ll see book covers I’ve designed, interviews, and updates on my publishing house!

Stay tuned!