2012 By The Monkeys

No, not those monkeys. They don’t even spell their name that way. Although I would pretty much let Davy Jones post anything he wanted, if he were still alive. Since Peter Tork and Michael Nesmith are not available and Micky Dolenz will not return my calls, the WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog. Mainly, it nagged me to write more and questioned my obsession with Cloris Leachman and Madagascar hissing cockroaches. But I’ll leave the final judgment to you.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 5,700 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 10 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

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So Long, 2012, and Thanks for All the Fish…

happy-new-yearLoss, love, joy, grief, rebirth, pain, triumph: it’s been a rich and melancholic salad of a year for me. That canard of ancient wisdom, “Be careful what you wish for,” is definitely not one to toy with. For a while there, every shiny penny on the sidewalk, it seemed, came with a foot waiting to stomp on my hand as I reached for it.

My professional goals (Thank you, Jim Devitt, for reminding me of the importance of goal-setting) for this year were to publish two novels and continue building up my editing business. I’ve accomplished both. I’m very happy about that. Drawing Breath and Don’t Tell Anyone are both out. I’m helping some wonderful writers get their manuscripts ready for publication. Took me almost fifty years, but I think I’ve finally figured out what I want to do when I grow up. Being up to my elbows in words—my words and those of other’s—is definitely my happy place.

But this year, two additional books came out with my name attached to them as contributing author: Indies Unlimited’s Author’s Snarkopaedia Volume 1 and Indies Unlimited: Tutorials and Tools for Prospering in a Digital World. This would not be possible without the passion and dedication of Stephen Hise and K.S. Brooks, the evil geniuses behind Indies Unlimited. I sit in a little pink room filled with toys in a house in the woods, typing on a keyboard, a recluse by nature, and at times this gets isolating and a bit sad. Being a part of IU and having a virtual extended family of kindred spirits across the Interwebs gives me great joy and at times so much laughter I spit tea across the keyboard. I have actually pulled muscles from laughing. It’s much more entertaining to go to the chiropractor with a good story of how I hurt myself, rather than the usual snow-shoveling or long-car-ride excuse. I do like to be considerate of my healthcare professionals whenever possible. They want funny stories to tell people at parties, too.

So thank you to you all for supporting my writing, for sharing it with your friends, and for trusting me with your work and your words.

However 2012 has treated you, whether you’re gazing fondly in the rearview mirror or bidding it off with glee while saying, “Don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out,” I hope 2013 is bursting with health, peace, love, happiness, and prosperity, in whatever form that means to you.

Onward!

Tell Everyone!

DTA_Print_coverI’m excited to share the news with you…my third novel, Don’t Tell Anyone, has just been released!

When pneumonia lands Estelle Trager unconscious in the emergency room, it ruins everything for the stubborn 65-year-old woman. She’d been keeping a secret—a deadly secret—that she’d planned on taking to the grave. But now her son Adam and his wife, Liza, know about her tumors. Adam is outraged, but Estelle, who watched her mother and grandmother suffer from breast cancer in the days when no one dared speak its name, has no intention of putting her family or herself through the horrors of cancer treatment. Estelle decides there is only one solution: ask Liza, the 33-year-old daughter-in-law she once called a godless hippie raised by wolves, to kill her.

A horrified Liza refuses and keeps the request—among other things—a secret from her furious husband. But she tells his younger brother, Charlie, a close friend from college with whom she shares her own confidences, despite Adam’s serious case of sibling rivalry. Armed with nutrition textbooks and her neighbor, a savvy nurse, can Liza win over her mother-in-law and convince her to consider other options before the cancer, the secrets, and Estelle’s determination to end her life win out?

I didn’t intend on writing another book set into a backdrop of illness. At least not so soon after Drawing Breath, which pretty much wrenched me inside out and had me begging whatever subconscious power supplies me with stories to give me a nice, lighthearted comedy next time. But a death in my own family was still haunting me. And when that happens, I write. So Estelle came into my life. I wanted to know why a woman who knows breast cancer runs in her family would not only conceal that fact from her grown sons, but when she discovers her own lumps, chooses to let nature take its course. And the little apple-cart-upsetter that I am, I let someone find out. Set into a family with its own crazy quirks, closet-skeletons, and almost-healed scars, I sat back to watch how they would handle the situation.

Let’s just say that this isn’t your typical cancer story. I even show you how to make my mother-in-law’s famous chicken soup.

If you’d like to read an excerpt, go here. You can get the e-book from Amazon.com and Smashwords.com right now, and a paperback from Amazon.com shortly.

As always, thank you for your support and your comments. You guys continue to awe and inspire me!