Friday, November 30, 2012

Retired Health Message

Okay, mine isn't "officially" until 2015, but a friend sent this to me (thanks, Daisy!), and I couldn't resist reposting. Enjoy!
** *
As I was lying in bed pondering the problems of the world, I rapidly realized that I don't really give a rat's hiney. It's the tortoise life for me!
1.. If walking is good for your health, the postman would be immortal.
2.. A whale swims all day, only eats fish, drinks water, and is fat.
3.. A rabbit runs and hops and only lives 15 years.
4.. A tortoise doesn't run and does nothing, yet it lives for 450 years.
And you tell me to exercise?? I don't think so.
I'm retired. Go around me.
God grant me the senility to forget the people I never liked, the good fortune to run into the ones I do, and the eyesight to tell the difference.
Now that I'm older here's what I've discovered:
1. I started out with nothing, and I still have most of it.
2. My wild oats have turned into prunes and all-bran.
3. I finally got my head together, and now my body is falling apart.
4. Funny, I don't remember being absent-minded.
5. Funny, I don't remember being absent-minded.
6. If all is not lost, where is it?
7. It is easier to get older than it is to get wiser.
8. Some days, you're the dog; some days you're the hydrant.
9. I wish the buck stopped here; I sure could use a few.
10. Kids in the back seat cause accidents.
11. Accidents in the back seat cause kids.
12. It's hard to make a comeback when you haven't been anywhere.
13. The only time the world beats a path to your door is when you're in the bathroom.
14. If God wanted me to touch my toes, he'd have put them on my knees.
15. When I'm finally holding all the cards, why does everyone want to play chess?
16. Its not hard to meet expenses . . . they're everywhere.
17. The only difference between a rut and a grave is the depth.
18. These days, I spend a lot of time thinking about the hereafter . . .
I go somewhere to get something, and then wonder what I'm hereafter.
19. Funny, I don't remember being absent-minded.
20. DID I SEND THESE TO YOU BEFORE..........??????

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Liquid Drop Art

Go here to see some stunning photography of drops of liquid hitting a wet surface and bouncing back. Amazing how something so inconsequential can become breathtakingly beautiful.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Realistic Pencil Drawings by Rajacenna

Go here to check out these realistic pencil drawings that you would swear are black and white photographs!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Creative Fruit Packaging

There needs to be more marketing aimed specifically toward kids, like these packages of fruits and cheeses. Go here to see more of these wonderfully creative and whimsical offerings. And if your local grocery store doesn't have these, create your own!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Xavier Axelson is my Guest Author Tonight on "Other Worlds of Romance" on Blog Talk Radio

Xavier Axelson returns to "Other Worlds of Romance" on Blog Talk Radio. He'll be reading from his homo erotic romance, Velvet, now available from SeventhWindow Publications.

Show time is 11 pm et/ 10 pm ct
Don't miss it!
* * *
The first novel from Xavier Axelson is set against a backdrop of decadence, privilege and intrigue. Virago, the royal tailor, makes a discovery that will test the bonds of brotherhood, unravel the forbidden secrets of his heart and threaten the very fabric of his existence.

In a land where cruelty is disguised as allegiance, loyalty is masked by obligation and the laws of sumptuary govern the people, nothing is more dangerous than Velvet.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

I Need My Romantic Movies!

I was in Hastings yesterday, looking for a nice romantic movie. An acquaintance saw me and asked what was I looking for? I told her I was in the mood for a little romantic movie, and did she have one she could suggest? She replied, "Why don't you just read a book, like the kind you write?"

There's a big push on for people to turn off the TV or movie, and "turn on to a book". Books are fine and good. I love books. But I also need my romantic movies.

Why? Well, for one thing, if I see an on-screen couple with definite chemistry, I want to try to recreate those feelings in my stories. I watch the characters' interaction, the moves, the gestures, the looks, and I file them on mental index cards. I listen to the words and the tone of voice, and I hope to emulate it.

Books are great for taking me away to places I've never been. But I also need my movies to help me give my own stories that sense of realism and warmth that first love, true love, and everlasting love can bring.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

And My Blog Hop Winners Are...

Wow! It was a fantastic Black Friday Blog Hop! I had a record number of people commenting, so many that I decided to give away three of each of my own prizes!

Winners of an ebook are:
Lisa Cox, Lynne, and Ingeborg

Winners of an Amazon gift card are:
laurie, Katie Amanda, and CBarton

Winners of a Starbucks gift card are:
crystaley73, Caitlin Mozzo, and JanD

Congratulations to all! And thanks to everyone who participated!

And don't forget to set your calendars. Starting December 13th, and running through to the 24th, I'll be hosting my own private 12 GIVEAWAY DAYS OF CHRISTMAS!

Friday, November 23, 2012

It's the ONE DAY Black Friday Blog Hop!

Today and TODAY ONLY, we're having a Black Friday Blog Hop. While the rest of the US is out handling the crowds, fighting for their holiday gifts, some of us like to stay in, shop online, or just ignore Black Friday all to together. This year, join us in our second annual Black Friday Blog Hop! It's a ONE DAY hop where we're giving away prizes and most likely eating left over turkey. And while we do that, we are EACH doing a giveaway. Yep. There will be over 200 giveaways on each blog hosted by that Author or Blogger.
But that's not all.
We have THREE grand prizes. You as a reader can go to EACH blog and comment with your email address and be entered to win. Yep, you can enter over 200 times!

In the meantime, I'm also giving away three prizes: an ebook of your choice, an Amazon gift card, and a Starbucks gift card! International readers are welcome - just let me know if you're not in the US.
Here's what you have to do to be eligible.  Just tell us what you want Santa to bring you this year. That's it! Oh, and be sure you include your email address in your comment so we can get in touch with you in case you win!

Then all you have to do is go below and choose your next destination!

Now what are those grand prizes?

1st Grand Prize: A Kindle Fire or Nook Tablet

2nd Grand Prize: A $75 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card

3rd Grand Prize: A Swag Pack that contains paperbacks, ebooks, 50+ bookmarks, cover flats, magnets, pens, coffee cozies, and more!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Marsha Moore is my Guest Author Tonight on "Other Worlds of Romance" on Blog Talk Radio

Marsha Moore returns to "Other Worlds of Romance" on Blog Talk Radio tonight! Come listen as she reads an excerpt from her fantasy romance novel, Lost Volumes, Enchanted Bookstore Legend Three.

Showtime is 11 pm et/ 10 pm ct

Don't miss it!

* * *
When Lyra McCauley learns residents of Dragonspeir’s Alliance are suffering with a deadly plague, she doesn’t heed the warnings of her fiancĂ©, wizard Cullen Drake, to remain safe in her human world. After all, she’s the present Scribe—one of five strong women in her ancestry who possessed unique magic, each destined to protect the Alliance against the evil Black Dragon of the Dark Realm. With Cullen dependent upon Alliance power to maintain his immortality, the stakes are doubled for Lyra.
She leaves her college teaching and puts herself at risk for the community afflicted by black magic. To find a cure, she and Cullen travel into the vile, lawless underworld of Terza to strike a bargain with an expert. Their efforts further enrage the Black Dragon, vowing to decimate the Alliance and avenge the murder of his heir.
Lyra must secure the three lost volumes of the Book of Dragonspeir. Written by the three earliest Scribes, each book contains energy. Possession of the entire set will enable overthrow of the Dark Realm. Following clues into dangerous lands, Lyra and Cullen seek those volumes. His assistants, Kenzo the tiger owl and Noba the pseudodragon, prove invaluable aids. Only if they succeed, will the Alliance be safe and Lyra reach closer to the immortality she needs to live a life with Cullen.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Things Are Queer (1973) by Duane Michals

This will blow your mind. Go here and scroll down slowly at each successive photograph. You'll automatically go back to check this first photo again.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Wadi Rum Desert Resort

At first glance, my initial reaction was, "Total Recall!" This looks so much like the Mars from the original movie. But then I read that this was a hotel carved into the side of a mountain in Jordan. For more incredible photos, go here to check it out!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

The Feast

One artist's interpretation of "What would happen if forks and knives had to eat, too, or starve?" Leave a hamburger with french fries out on the table, and find out! Go here to see close-up shots of the results!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Playful Food

Now available on t-shirts! Go here to see all the cuteness from Brock Davis.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Donnette Smith is my Guest Author Tonight on "Other Worlds of Romance" on Blog Talk Radio

If you love voodoo and thrillers, then come listen tonight on "Other Worlds of Romance" on Blog Talk Radio! Donnette Smith will be reading from her paranormal romance, Cunja, from Decadent Publishing.

Show time is 11 pm et/ 10 pm ct
News reporter, Priscilla Hart, is guilty of using her charm to con Detective Logan Payne out of privileged information for a homicide story she’s covering. But when the killer attacks her, she’s forced to turn to the same man she swindled and beg him for protection.

Helping Priscilla is the last thing on Logan’s mind. He’s more interested in getting her to confess she fabricated the assault to get closer to her sources again. But as the case heats up, he finds himself torn between giving in to the his smoldering desire for the attractive reporter and distancing himself so he can focus on the biggest murder investigation of his career.

The predator’s trail leads to the unearthing of a mysterious medallion and an ancient Cajun spell known as Cunja. As the clock of doom winds down, Logan discovers the woman he loves stands at the center of a sadistic voodoo priest’s plan and saving her is only the tip of the iceberg.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

On Butterfly Wings

Bored Panda has some incredible macro photographs of butterfly wings. If you thought those insects were beautiful from a distance, wait until you see the exquisite details up close!

Friday, November 9, 2012

FUN - "Some Nights"

Initially, I saw FUN performing "Carry On" on SNL Live the Saturday after hurricane Sandy hit New York. I was struck by the odd percussion with the slight melodic Celtic overtones. I liked the song, so I went on iTunes to purchase it. That's how I found "Some Nights". This time the percussion was more African in rhythm and tempo. Strong. Powerful. That's when I went on YouTube to find the videos. I was not prepared for the Civil War background of this song, but it fits.

Take a listen. And I dare you not to tap your foot to the beat.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Has Television or the Movies Ruined You for a Particular Character's Name?

When our sons were born, the hardest thing my husband and I had to do was to name them. For him, the name couldn't be of someone he knew and didn't care for. For me, it couldn't be a student I'd taught who had given me a year of misbehaving misery.

As a writer, I'm back to square one again. What do I name my hero and heroine? Unfortunately, some names I particularly enjoy are the names of certain characters on television shows or movies, and these characters are total jerks or beyotches. No way do I want to give the two most important people in my book a moniker that might remind the reader of someone they detest, either fiction or non-fiction.

Yeah, I know the chances of not having that happen are pretty minuscule. But am I the only one who feels this way?

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The Bowl of Green M&Ms

I remember hearing years ago about some rock star who insisted on a bowl of green M&M's in their dressing room, and threw a fit if it wasn't there. Years later I learned _why_, I think from an Amanda Palmer interview.

Some types of touring musicians drag enormous quantities of elaborate and expensive equipment with them from city to city: maybe a million dollars worth of instruments, lights, amplifiers, mixing boards, pyrotechnics... After each show this stuff gets rapidly torn down, shipped ahead overnight to the next venue, and set up by local technicians who are not familiar with it before the band and their own roadies get there.

Not only do the locals have to avoid damaging the equipment doing this, but if they don't set it up _exactly_right_ it won't sound right, may fail halfway through the show, or even kill someone. Pyrotechnics are dangerous,stages are dangerous, just the lights can start fires or explode sending glass shards flying, or simply fall on someone from 40 feet up, or give you heatstroke bad enough to triggerheart attacks. Evena miswired microphone can kill you.

This stuff is so complicated it's been compared to flying a jumbo jet that gets dismantled and shipped ahead at each stop, and then you have to go up in it and fly in circles for a couple hours. If it was put together by people who didn't follow the instructions, or did a few steps how they think it should go instead of how you said it should go, bad things happen in front of (and sometimes to) very large crowds.

So experienced touring musicians provide the locals with detailed instructions to be followed _exactly_ about how to set up their show in each new venue. And the really experienced ones bury a canary item a couple dozen pages into the checklist, so that when they walk into their dressing room and see the canary they know the instructions were followed exactly and that it's safe to perform. If they DON'T see the canary item, or the canary item is prepared wrong, the rest of the instructions weren't followed correctly either and their equipment isn't going to work.

Of course people who don't understand what's going on attribute it to the musician being crazy. Refusing to perform over a missing bowl of green M&M's? What a prima donna... And there you see theDunning-Kruger effect in action. One's own lack of knowledge making the experts seem stupid.

~ Rob Landley (Original Post Here)

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

My Horrific Side

In case you didn't know, I have a horror blog. If you like zombies, scary stuff, horrendous photos, and other related terror, check it out! I post regularly every Monday, Thursday, and Saturday, and sometimes in between. You'll even find links to my horror books, which I write under the name of Gail Smith.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Jax Garren is my Guest Author Tonight on "Other Worlds of Romance" on Blog Talk Radio

Join us tonight when Jax Garren appears on "Other Worlds of Romance" on Blog Talk Radio. She'll be reading an excerpt from her paranormal romance, How Beauty Met the Beast, book 1 of her Tales of the Underlight series, from Carina Press.

Show time is 11 pm et/ 10 pm ct

Don't miss it!
The Beast
Scarred. Damaged. Living with a terrible secret. Agent of the Underlight Wesley "Hauk" Haukon has nothing left but the fight for liberty against the oppressive Order of Ananke. He's starting to lose hope…and then he sees her.
The Beauty
Despite her night job as a burlesque dancer, grad student Jolie Benoit has always played the mostly good girl. That all changes following a scorching sexual encounter with a stranger whose face she doesn't see. After she's kidnapped by thugs and rescued by a man with a very familiar voice, Jolie becomes a pawn in a struggle she never knew existed.

Hauk knows he cannot have her, and resolves to protect his heart and his secrets. But as they work together and grow closer, he finds new reason to keep fighting. Dare he risk hope in a new life, one where Jolie can see past his ravaged face and where their friendship can grow into something more?

Saturday, November 3, 2012

The Ultimate Movie App - RunPee (dot) com

This has to be the ultimate app for theater movie goers. You're in the theater, the flick is getting good, and that extra large drink you purchased is starting to get your attention. And you can't wait until the end of the movie to go to the restroom.  Ta da! This is when you check your RunPee app to find out the perfect time to take that potty run. It'll even tell you what dialog and scenes you missed!

For more information, check out Lost at E Minor.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Thursday, November 1, 2012

They're Musicians, Too!

I just thought that everyone needed to see this picture of the Cleveland Orchestra bass section dressed up as the Avengers.