Archive for December, 2015

Louisa Oakley Green & Loitering at the Gate to Eternity: Memoirs of a Psychic Bystander

Monday, December 28th, 2015

As you all know I’m interested in the paranormal and always have been. While I usually go hog wild around Halloween, I enjoy the paranormal any time of year. Recently I had the opportunity to hear Louisa Oakley Green on a paranormal radio show and enjoyed the discussion on the show so much I invited her to stop by my blog. As a journalist and science writer she was always a skeptic, then some things changed for her. Here’s a tidbit of why Louisa recently wrote Loitering at the Gate To Eternity: Memoirs of a Psychic Bystander. You can find this book at Amazon here and her other paranormal book Sightseeing in the Undiscovered Country: Tales Retold by a Psychic Bystander at Amazon here. Please stop by Louisa’s website here. Welcome Louisa!

Book Cover

It isn’t often something occurs that turns your sense of reality on its side. But that’s just what happened to me more than 20 years ago when I met my psychic husband, Stephen.

I’ve worked as a journalist and science writer. And back in those days I was also a strong skeptic about anything paranormal. But the universe has a sense of humor and I ended up falling in love with a quirky guy who, other than thinking he was psychic, seemed reasonably normal. Oh, and he also came from a family of psychics. They didn’t do readings for a living. They all had normal jobs. But they had this ability….

After a while I found myself surrounded by remarkable clairvoyants and mediums, so I began referring to myself as a psychic bystander. (Did I mention that I have no detectable psychic ability myself?) Over the years, I experienced events through his family and friends that just couldn’t be explained. It piqued my curiosity and I eventually decided to write my first book in the Psychic Bystander™ series, Loitering at the Gate to Eternity: Memoirs of a Psychic Bystander. It retells more than 100 true stories from everyday people about their psychic experiences—including out-of-body adventures, premonitions, contact with the dead, reincarnation and more. The fact-based side of me added the history of many of these phenomena through the millennia in various cultures.

When I went to book signings, people handed me their contact information and asked if they could be included in my second book. It surprised me that people assumed there would be a sequel. But eventually, there was. Sightseeing in the Undiscovered Country: Tales Retold by a Psychic Bystander is a second anthology of more than 100 true paranormal stories. But this time the science writer in me added highlights from several recent university and military studies into consciousness, near-death experiences, reincarnation and more.

People in these anthologies have worked in the fields of healthcare, education, finance, engineering, marketing, entertainment, pastoral services and law enforcement. When you finish reading their personal accounts, perhaps like me, you may never view “reality” the same way again.

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Freeing Your Creativity: What No One Will Tell You

Thursday, December 17th, 2015

As a creativity coach I witness it over and over again. Writers blocked and conflicted, agonized, depressed. While every writer having issues is an individual situation and can’t be lumped into the same container, I can tell you the number one problem I’m noting with authors who are having long-term issues with their creativity.

They aren’t writing what they want to write.

One of the most freeing things I’ve ever experienced is realizing creativity doesn’t always operate well inside a box. The publishing industry won’t tell you this. Most other authors won’t tell you this. In fact if you say it out loud many people will roll their eyes. After all, if you write what blows your skirt up there’s even a chance some of your friends, family, and perfect strangers won’t like it or won’t approve. So you should conform, right?

Not if you want to create for the long term, be authentic, and be genuinely happy.

For ninety-nine percent of you who are in this writing gig to please yourself (which in the end is the only way creativity flourishes long term) you’ll find that going against your creative instincts can lead to ninety-nine percent of your writing career problems.

The message perpetuated in the writing world comes out in the wash as, “If I write what the market is telling me to write, what readers are telling me to write, what publishers, and agents say to write and what makes money, I’m doing the right thing.” Can an author do this for a long time? Of course. But often it catches up with them in the most unpleasant way. Unfortunately, for many writers, this can be the end of their creativity.

Let me describe a scene from long ago in my writing career. By 2001 I’d decided I wanted to write erotic romance and to write about creepy bad guys. I was jazzed every time I wrote both of these things. It felt right and it felt good. At the same time, I needed variety in order for my creativity to flourish. Maybe I wanted to write a sweeter story one month. Another month I wanted to write a historical romance set in Jack The Ripper’s London. Another time I wanted to write a story about a modern day soldier with PTSD. In yet another moment I wanted to write a romance set in World War II London. Sometimes these stories were erotic, sometimes super hot, sometimes a lot tamer. The characters dictated how hot these stories would be based on their personalities. My instincts told me what type of story I’d write next.

In the conventional romance writing industry this is often considered professional suicide.

Authors are told to have a pen name for every genre, and for goodness sake never write in multiple subgenres within romance. Conventional publishing is still (even with the advent of self-publishing) about “branding.”

Several years ago I attended a writer’s organization meeting and heard this sentence come out of an agent’s mouth. “At some point you’re going to have to stop writing what you want and write what sells.” She was talking to our group and not to me specifically, but I was hacked-off by this statement, and it was then I realized this issue was a hot button for me.

What was she really saying? My interpretation was that if an author wants to sell any book, if an author wants to make money writing then the author may have to deny her own creativity.

It may not be exactly what she was thinking. She may not have connected the ability to create with being “happy” with what an author creates. Yet, I realized in that moment that a lot of people in that room might take it as gospel.

I understood if I followed that particular agent’s advice I might as well quit writing, because it would suffocate me, strangle my creativity and make me miserable.

If writing what I didn’t want to write was the only way I could get a publishing contract, what was the point?

With the advent of ebooks and even more so with self-publishing flourishing, it became apparent that far more people could create what they wanted and publish it. Could they make money? Some could and some couldn’t. Good, right? Yes and no. Many people are still sidelining their true creativity in favor of following trends in hopes of landing big money.

Is this a bad thing? Sometimes yes. When you wake up one morning with money in your pocket from writing the one-hundredth story in a series, but are utterly and completely sick of writing, it isn’t a good thing.

At this point, many authors give up writing, because they can’t achieve their goal of making a lot of money. Many authors write with the sole intent on selling a ton of books (it’s never been about the creativity specifically), and these authors also have a different idea of what amount of money qualifies as “successful.” These authors do not find this stifling to their creativity. However if you’re a creative person who needs to write like you need oxygen, the pressure of writing “to market” can be damned painful. You may not even understand why you’re blocked.

Sometimes you don’t want to write that twelfth Navy SEAL novel. Or that twenty-second shifter or mixed martial arts novel. You’ve done one thing for too long and now the creativity inside you is drying up.  Every book is starting to sound the same. Yet you’ll ignore it because conventional publishing wisdom tells you that you should go where the money is. Even if it means torturing yourself to get there.

What’s the cure?

If you’ve been writing in a particular genre or subgenre for a long time, delve into another fiction or nonfiction arena that excites and thrills you. Write what makes you happy and you’ll have a much better chance that your creativity will flourish and grow. Let me say this as both as someone who has been doing this writing thing since I was fourteen, and as a creativity coach….if you write in a different genre you won’t die.

Disclaimer: Every writer’s experience and every writer follows a different path. I can only tell you what I’ve seen, heard, and experienced both as an author and creativity coach. I was inspired to write this piece by a blog written by author Shoshanna Evers (which you can read here). I applaud her for following her heart when it comes to her writing, and wish her tremendous creativity, satisfaction and fulfillment in her new creative journey.

 

 

Trapped With A Firefighter? Holding Out For A Hero? #firefighters #militaryromance #suspense

Monday, December 7th, 2015

 

trapped

Two book releases in one week? How did I manage that? I didn’t, actually. Things just sort of fell into place that way. Over the years, though, I’ve learned how to roll with multiple book releases occurring at one time. So what’s the story behind the release of Trapped and the box set Holding Out For A Hero: SEALS, Soldiers, Spies, Cops, FBI Agents & Rangers?

Over a three time period running from 2011 to 2013 a series of wildfires threatened areas I lived in or used to live in (Monument Fire, Antelope Fire, Waldo Canyon Fire and Black Forest Fire). Because of these significant events, I was inspired to write Trapped, a short romantic suspense novella featuring a wild land firefighter. The fire isn’t the only suspenseful element in this story. The heroine Arlie Davis ran from fire once before and yet paid a terrible price. A new fire threatens her world and an entire community and fear nips . When a madman decides she’ll succumb to the flames, firefighter Hank Clancy is her only hope for survival.

I dedicated this story to the Prescott Granite Mountain Hot Shots who lost their lives in June 30, 2013, the day after I got the inspiration to write my story Trapped. You can grab your copy at:

Liquid Silver Books

Amazon

All Romance Ebooks

 

 

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You can grab your copy of the Kindle Unlimited box set Holding Out For A Hero: SEALS, Soldiers, Spies, Cops, FBI Agents & Rangers at:

Amazon

My story in this set is Blackout (a post apoc. thriller with suspense and paranormal elements and features an ex-marine hero). Also joining me in this box set are NY Times and USA Today best selling authors Caridad Pineiro, Sharon Hamilton, Gennita Low, Tawny Weber, Karen Fenech, Lisa Hughey, and Opal Carew.

Every girl wants a hero, a knight in shining armor who comes to her rescue. Here are 8 HOT stories from New York Times and USA Today bestselling authors making every girl’s wish come true. Sexy romance and breathless suspense. Intrigue and dangerous kisses. Holding out for love has its rewards! From SEALs to cops to spies, here are special men who know how to protect their women—and how to love them.

Thanks for stopping by my blog, and I hope your days and nights are filled with heroes.

 

 

 

 

Thunderclap for Holding Out For A Hero!

Wednesday, December 2nd, 2015

Morning all. Or afternoon. Or evening. Wherever you are I’m saying howdy! A quick update for the day. We have a new Thunderclap campaign for the romantic suspense box set Holding Out For A Hero. We would love it if you could support us. What that means is that if you add your Facebook and/or Twitter or any other social media to our campaign, on December 31 our message about our box set will go out on your social media. This is a wonderful way to help authors spread the word about their work. Thunderclap doesn’t snag your social media permanently, it’s just a way to help us tell so many people that our box set is available. We need 100 supporters by December 31.

To help us out click here!

Thank you SO much.

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