Monday, November 26, 2018


In less than five weeks we will be ringing in 2019.

What a year it has been! I have broken three bones, had four surgeries, still deal with cancer and have physical therapy every day. I have retired and opened my own travel agency. Nope; not the kind that I have to work for someone else...the kind that I own and operate on my own. I'm actually certified, crazy and as a travel agent.

Imagine that...2018 will be done in less than five weeks.

Have you gotten everything done that you wanted to? Have you finished or started that novel that you had been thinking about? Have you gotten yourself ready for the upcoming year?

Although the year wasn't what I thought it would be, it has sure turned out way better than I thought it would be.

I have traveled more in the past three months than I have in the past three years. 

I have met some wonderful people, authors and many have become friends.

I have fallen in love, out of love and something in between love.

I have welcomed a new 'almost' daughter in law and lost a dear friend.

2018 has been one helluva year but I wouldn't change it for anything.

2019 will bring new challenges, new hopes and new dreams and I am ready for it, are you?

Monday, November 19, 2018


So, I recently just saw that none of my 'scheduled' posts had posted. So here is one that I wrote right before Halloween.

In the days leading up to Halloween, what kind of inspiration do you get for your writing.

I don't like scary movies but I love reality police shows. I watch The First 48 every day.

Sometimes all day. Lifetime and A&E channels run marathons on Monday, Wednesdays and Thursday with the NEW episode on Thursday night.

I love this show and find myself thinking about the detectives on that show.

My favorite is Carolyn Mason. She is a weave wearing, high heel wearing, gun toting black woman who will make a grown man cry and a teenager ask for his momma.

She is the kind of heroine I need in my stories and well; she is my inspiration for The Stiletto Stalker.

I've been working on this book for two years and finally its done. 

Since its my first murder mystery, I am very hesitant to submit it because; well I'm an author and I don't want it to be bad. (please don't let it be bad)

So for now; it sits in my drawer and on my computer...waiting for the day that I am ready to 'give birth' .

So, what inspiration do you take from Halloween?

Monday, September 24, 2018


I was back. I was blogging and I was writing and then it happened.

My last blog was on Aug. 27; almost a month ago. Before then, I had been chugging out a blog every week for a couple of months. I was actually writing two or three blogs at a time and scheduling them.

Suddenly, I was in a funk.  You know the kind. Where you don't want to write, where you don't want to read, where you don't want to do anything but stay in bed; with the covers over your head and wait it out.

With that wave of funkiness over me; I began seeing more and more posts about 'feeling blue'. Coincidence? I don't think so.

As a writer, my writing is my outlet. When I begin to feel blue; I write. When I feel like crying, I write; when I feel like being in bed all day, I write. But this time it was harder to shake.

It was harder to overcome the urge to stay in bed. It was harder to feel like writing, or reading or doing anything but lay in bed.

I had another surgery on Sept. 7th for a new condition that I developed as a result of my ankle break in Feb. (are you sick of hearing about it; well imagine living with it every day for the past eight months)

Only this time, the surgery was harder on my body. I woke up in more pain than I was before going in. 

My new condition is called CRPS or chronic regional pain syndrome. It is a painful disease that causes swelling, pain, and burning in the area of an injury. In this case, my ankle. It causes radiating pain, throbbing pain and the pain is NEVER ENDING. There is NO cure once this syndrome has developed. The only thing they can do is 'manage' it with nerve blocks, or an electrical device placed in the epidural space of your spine. 

Did I mention that the device stays in FOREVER? (YEP, forever)

Every day I wake up with pain. On a scale of one to ten; its starts with a 15 and by the end of the day, its about a seven. 

I"m constantly icing, medicating and elevating my ankle. (good thing I'm retired now because having my leg up on my desk was a little weird when I needed to meet with parents)

So on the days I'm feeling blue; its because the pain has won. The pain has gotten the better of me and all I want to do is stay in bed, heavily medicated, with the covers over my head. All I want to do is take the pain away. 

If someone could massage my ankle; all day, I'd be in heaven. See massaging it; although painful at times, makes it better. But I can't have a massage all day so I have to medicate; all day. Which I hate.

So, although I am now out of my 'blue' feeling; my pain is still there and I am still dealing with pain. As I write this; My leg is elevated; which makes writing this blog a little uncomfortable but I'm managing. Even having a sock on makes the ankle swell so bad that I can barely remove the sock. Today I am winning because today's pain is only a 8. Score! 

So the next time you don't feel like writing because you are feeling blue, think about this. You're probably not in pain and there is nothing stopping you, except for you. Be glad you aren't sitting with a bag of ice wrapped around your ankle, with pain meds sitting on the desk in front of you. 

Monday, August 27, 2018


It's almost time for the Creatures, Crimes and Creativity conference.

Have you registered yet? 

You need to make sure that if you are in the Maryland area that you check out this great, local, small conference.

They feature local as well as best selling authors.

This event showcases products from suspense, thriller, horror, sci-fi, fantasy and paranormal. 

It's happening on Oct. 5-7, 2018 in Columbia, Maryland at the Sheraton Hotel.

This is where you can meet your favorite author, have lunch with them, have dinner and a few drinks. 

You can purchase novels and also make sure to get those selfies.

Are there other conferences that you attend that I should know about? Let me know and make sure to include the link. 

So will you be there? It's not to late to register.

Click this link and register today. Creatures, Crimes and Creativity 2018

Monday, August 13, 2018


Some people say that blogging is hard. 

I find it pretty easy. That's because I ALWAYS have something to say.

See, I find it very easy to blog; especially if I am upset about something. However, I find it pretty easy to blog about things I observe and things that I learn while being an author.

You don't have to 'give tips" every time you blog. You can simply write about what happened during your day; while writing or not writing. 

Write about what has upset you. It's the cheapest therapy I know. 

Better yet, write about the struggles of your writing life because a lot of us want to know how you overcame that particular problem.

Last week, I met up with fellow book diva Dee Lawrence and we had an amazing breakfast at Eggspectations. I had the breakfast burrito and after seeing mine, so did she. 

We were able to chat and catch up on all that has been happening with us in our private lives and our writing lives.

After a couple of mimosas' we just sat and people watched for a bit before calling it a morning. 

We met early and before we knew it; four hours had blown by and we really didn't want to leave but life called and told us we needed to stop relaxing and get back at it.

So we said our goodbyes and inked ourselves in for another breakfast meeting to just catch up.

See, I didn't think I would tell you all that but it's part of the reason I like blogging. 

I can say just about anything I want and it relieves me of some stress. 

+LadySunshine95 says she doesn't know what to blog about but I tell her; just sit at the computer and you will be AMAZED at what pours out of your mind.

Many people think you have to blog once a day or once a week. But that is not the case. You can blog as often as you need to. I find that blogging once a week helps my mental status. Just don't go to long without a blog or people will forget all about you. 

Do you find it hard to blog and if so; what are you doing to make it better? 

Let me know or better yet; write a blog about it and send me the link; I'd be glad to read all about it. 

Until next time, keep reading and I'll keep on writing. 

Monday, August 6, 2018


So I've officially done it.

Well not that I wanted to but I had to.

I met with doctors, nurses, specialists, my therapist and my partners and I finally made a decision.

One that will either help me or teach me a lesson; either way the decision is made and I"m not turning back.

I will officially no longer work in the school system. I am leaving my job after 21 years.

Now, that decision didn't come easy. 

As you all know, I fell on Feb. 18, 2018 and had a severe break of my ankle, leg and foot. Surgery was on Feb. 26, 2018 and as of today, Aug. 6, 2018 I'm still on crutches, still wearing a hard brace and still suffering from pain and from severe swelling. 

So after months of therapy, deliberation and tears; I've decided to call it quits and focus on my health, my tiny house and my new business.

I am scared out of my wits but I am taking a leap of faith in this new opportunity. 

I don't know what the future holds for my ankle but I know that my tiny house, my author life and my future will be better because I made this decision.

Have you made a decision that you were scared to make but knew it would be OK in the end. 

Comment below and tell me what you did and how it worked out or didn't work out for you.

Remember, keep reading, keeping writing and keep believing in yourself.

Monday, July 30, 2018


I have always heard about it but had never experienced it.

Until last week.

I was on FB and commented on a post. Suddenly, Christina began commenting about what I had said. She even went as far as to go to my other FB page, copy and paste a picture I had taken and post it in the group we were having a discussion in. She was rude, name calling and mean. She was, what you would call a Cyber Bully. 

When I asked why she went to my other FB page and copied/pasted a picture from my page, her words, "I posted it in another one of my groups to show people that you are a SPAMMER."

Wait, what?

How did I spam my own page. I didn't post it anywhere else and I was in my own home. I posted it to MY followers; which I said to her. So unlike so many people on that post that privately messaged me and told me to ignore her. I was NOT going to let this bully get away with 1. accusing me of something I didn't do and 2. take my photo and post to other groups, that I am not in, without my permission or consent.

I responded to one young lady who told me that Christina "does this in a lot of groups and people just block her or ignore her." Uh, no..that is why she thinks its OK. Not today and not me!

She kept on with her barrage of comments and name calling and I responded by telling her that it was "raining in DC all week and I was sorry she was having a bad day but to take a breath and it would be OK." That got a barrage of more aggressive and mean spirited replies including, "OMG, ARE YOU SERIOUS. YOU TAKE A BREATH. YOU ARE SO AGGRESSIVE."
My response came much later and I said, "I'm sorry that you think that is aggressive but sharing my photo is not something that you should be doing." To which she said, "I WILL SHARE WHAT I WANT AND YOU CAN'T STOP ME." (and yes, it was in all capital letters)and then she wrote this, "I see you commenting back but I'm not going to say anything else." I looked and she had deleted all but her last comment. So, I went back and deleted every comment I made. (although I had been pleasant and didn't call names) I wanted her to see that I was in this 'game' to win it. 

Then it happened, someone spoke up and said, "Wow, Christina is there a problem? Why are you attacking Sandra?" 


She was caught! and just like that...dead air!

She then had the nerve to private message me and say, "you don't deserve to be on FB." My response, "Yes, I's bullies like YOU who don't deserve it."

She posted one last time and I quote. "You can block me if you don't like me but I am not the aggressive one. You all are." To which a lot of people took exception to it and called her out. 

Many of them are in different groups with her, asked my permission to screen shot her comments and share them. 

Bullies can't handle when you stand up for yourself and for this woman; cyber bullying seems to be the way she makes herself feel good. But she met her match when she said one to many rude comments to me. 

So if you are on FB and know Christina W. (who is a travel agent as well) just know, she is aggressive, a cyber bully and will post your pictures without your knowledge or consent. 

I am breaking her reign on FB of cyber bullying people 

Monday, July 23, 2018


I am such a sucker for real love. Not the kind that these reality shows depict but the ones that you feel when you are reading a great novel. I am also a sucker for a great emotional read.

One of my good friends, Jen Buckley, is a great reader and great critic. She recently described a book that she read; Give Me Your Hand by +MeganAbbott "as an amazing read with twists and turns." She said she had "to stop multiple times because of the twists and turns but by the end of the book it had her screaming, what the F***."

See, Megan Abbott got it right. She gave her readers, or at least Jen, an emotional reaction to her story line.

I learned at a conference, Thrillerfest to be exact, that each of your readers should be emotionally invested in your book by the middle of it. If they are not; you aren't doing a good job of telling a story.

I have a thing that I do on my Facebook page called, "Stepping onto my soapbox" and some times my followers/friends read it and are so emotionally attached to those three paragraphs that they are angry, happy, sad or just laughing so hard that they forgot that what I was saying may or may not have been true.

So when I read a book, I have to be emotionally yours, so to speak. I have to feel what you were feeling when you wrote it. I have to feel almost every emotional range that a human has and then be just like Jen at the end of the book. 

What the F***...yeah, if you have me cursing at the end of the book, I'm emotionally yours.

So, make sure to read through your manuscript. Are you having an emotional reaction to your characters. If not; START OVER. Ir's that simple.

Happy writing! 

Monday, July 9, 2018


It's the perfect time to drag out that manuscript you have been working on for years, or months, or weeks.

It's also the perfect time to look at how things may have changed in that novel that you started on. 

Speaking to Author Austin Camacho recently, he had been working on a novel for a couple of years and pulled it out since he was now retired and is a full time author.

First, congratulations and secondly I asked him how it was being a full time author.

He said that while he enjoyed working on his latest Hannibal novel, he found that he had to ; hold on to your computer, delete almost half of what he wrote because it was no longer relevant to today's world.

See when you begin that novel; you have to make sure to go back, no matter how much you loved it when you first wrote it, it may not be relevant in the time you are working on now.

When you first started that novel, pagers where the in thing. Now; even doctors use their phones as a paging system. So that delete key becomes your best friend. 

I know it is hard to see those words disappear from the page. The same words that took you almost three months to write just four chapters are gone within 10 seconds. 

You may even shed a tear but remember, when you get over the demise of your precious words; the words that come back will be so much better.

So, the summer is a great time to look at that novel again and tweak, delete or continue but whatever you do; make sure that you are writing the best book possible. 

Thursday, July 5, 2018


Why do people assume that just because you are an author that you do nothing else.

Well, I have many things that I like to do besides being an author. I like to travel and I like to cook. I like to shop for shoes. I like to read and I like to work with other authors.

Being an author IS enough for me but it is not my only job. 

When people say, "oh, your just an author" you need to speak up and say..."no; I'm an author AND I like to..."

Don't let people minimize your hard work. Being an author is hard work.

How many nights did you lay awake trying to figure out who to kill in your novel? Or if you have to cut out those first few pages of your novel because they just don't fit the way the story is going. 

Now, having a nine to five is hard. But at the end of your normal work day; you are off. 

At the end of the author's work day...never happens. Here is an 'average' author's work day.

Get up, have coffee (because that gets the juices flowing)
Go into your home office or she shed or man cave (wherever you like to write) and sit down.
Write an outline
Or just start writing
Have more coffee
Get the kids off to school (or wife/husband off to work)
Sit back down and start writing
Delete half of what you wrote two hours ago. (it doesn't move the story along)
Begin a new outline for a new novel because you have gotten 'stuck' in your current novel
Wait, its after three already? Kids are coming home. Help with homework 
After getting kids settled,  you are back in your man cave/she shed writing. 
Now you are in the groove and "honey, I'm home" 
Wait, what? it's after six already? 
Get up and hope that you don't loose that train of thought that you had for the problem in the story you JUST fixed.
Dinner, dishes and kitchen done and now back to the writing office.
Now you need more coffee because
Wait, what? it's after midnight? and you just finished chapter three.

Yes, folks that the life of a full time author. So is being "just" an author what you do?

I would say no. 

Tuesday, June 19, 2018


So we all await this time of year. 

Where we meet our fans and fellow authors. 

Where we exchange ideas and where we learn about new projects, new authors, share what works and what doesn't. 

We learn who received that multi book deal or who got a movie deal or movie options.

Yep; its conference time and how many of us will be traveling to conferences.

There is one in Las Vegas. There is one in New York and there is also one in Maryland 

I have helped you out by linking to those sites, via their city name. 

Las Vegas has the PSWA conference. New York hosts Thrillerfest and Maryland is home to the Creatures, Crimes and Creativity Con.

These three conferences make up a few of the places you will find Intrigue Publishing authors.

We love these conferences but most importantly we love C3.

This is where we get to show off (Intrigue Authors) and we get to prove that we know how to put on a great show. 

This year they have added Noir At The Bar and it promises to be a great time.

So, tell me what conferences you are going to attend this year and why do you like it?

Monday, June 11, 2018


This time last week I was composing an email to a dear author friend.

This is something we had done numerous times since our first meeting in 2012 at the Black Authors Rock Weekend.

It wasn't until a couple of years ago, when she was the moderator for a panel I was on at Busboys and Poets that we became email pals.

I was in awe of her writing, had been since her novel, Where Did We Go Wrong? hit the Essence best seller list. She told of how she got up, stayed in her PJ's and wrote until she got tired. 

Well, as I composed that email I was telling her that I was finally getting my tiny house and finally make the commitment to write every day. I knew she would find something funny to say and then, as always encourage me to 'set aside space, time and just let my creative juices flow".

I always looked for her inspiration messages on Instagram and while I hadn't gotten a response from my early morning email; I knew she would respond to it. 

Then my heart got crushed around 9 pm Monday night.

I saw messages popping up in my stream about how we needed to PRAY for her husband and son. How we needed to hope that everything would be OK. I didn't want to go to her page because I didn't want to know what they were talking about.

But I had to know.

And I learned late Monday night that my writing, email, author friend had died. 

To say that my heart was crushed is an understatement. My heart hurts..literally. I have been crying since learning of the news. I can't stop smiling because I know her smile is forever and I can't stop from wishing that she was still here. That she would answer that last email; that she would send that inspiration message on Instagram.

But Monica is not.

She has gained her wings and we are left with a huge whole in the literary community. 

We are selfish because we want her here but there are reason why her shoulder was tapped. There is a reason why her laptop will never come back on. There is a reason why that space on her bed, that held her while writing will never be occupied. 

It's because she is now writing that next novel in her other home. She is now writing as much as she wants and will never know about deadlines, edits and rejection. 

She is where we all hope to be; she just got there first and now she is writing and holding our seat at the table.

Rest eternally my beautiful friend as I will miss you and will never forget our emails every Monday morning.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018


Some people believe that Memorial Day is for ALL veterans.

Let's be clear. It's for the ones that lost their life. Don't walk up to a service member and say Happy Memorial Day. 

They aren't the ones you need to thank.

Did you go to the cemetery and lay some flowers? Did you go visit a family of a service member who came home 'under' the flag?

See, most people think that this day of remembrance is about having a party, grilling out or saying Thank you to the military people they pass in the street.

It's about us remembering that our freedom, our lives and our country is free because of the people that gave their lives so that we could have freedom of speech and the freedom to live as we choose.

Given that the NFL just ruled that the players are NOT FREE to kneel has upset me. 

Colin Kapernick was kneeling, not because he was disrespecting the flag. Those of you that take exception to that, missed the entire point of his kneeling.

He was kneeling because he took exception to the line in the National Anthem that said, "and justice for all." Justice, as he was protesting, isn't for all. It is for those of you, who's skin color is not dark. Justice isn't for those of us that are male, black and young. 

So Memorial Day is meant for those that gave their lives so that Colin could kneel. 

Make sure you know how to celebrate this day. 

I don't say Happy Memorial Day to my dad or my daughter. 

I say it to those that can't hear me, at Cheltenham Veterans Cemetery or Arlington National Cemetery.

Monday, May 21, 2018


When it's raining outside, most people want to curl up in bed with a good book and read until they finish or binge watch TV.

Not me!

This was the first time in almost four months that I could walk without the use of crutches so I did what any normal person would do.

I went out!

Yep, went out and had a full day.

First my day started with a 1 year olds birthday party. At Chuck E. Cheese no less. Big mistake. It was full of screaming children and those that were not screaming, were crying.

Well all except the birthday girl. She was asleep. She was missing her own party. Oh well, so much for the exciting overstuffed mouse and cheese pizza. 

On to the next stop.

Preakness Day Party.

Yay! I have never attended any kind of horse race and had no idea of the pageantry of it all.

The horse, the outfits and the HATS! Let's talk about the hats. First I am not a hat person, so I just ran into Macy's and picked up a quick one. 

Big mistake.

These women were donned out in the finest clothes. It was like I was sitting in church with a group of church mothers all vying for the coveted prize of "My hat is bigger than yours" prize or better yet. The "Don't sit behind me because you can't see anything past my hat" prize. 

Don't get me wrong, they were gorgeous hats; I just didn't know that people here in DC took this king of thing that seriously. 

Well now I know so I am already on the hunt for a very unique hat for the Belmont race coming up in a couple of weeks. 

Like I need another addiction. 

Then it was off to the third event of the day.

An all white party, hosted by my American Legion for the Martin and Long scholarship fund. 

It was a beautiful affair with everyone decked out in their finest white attire. Men had on their white suits and women had on their summer whites. 

But I thought all white meant, well all white. So I had on everything white including my shoes. 

Most people had on a variety of shoe colors, none of which were WHITE. What is the point of having and ALL WHITE party if you aren't going to wear ALL WHITE...just an observation on my part.

So after beginning the day at 9am; my day finally came to an end at 1AM, Sunday morning. 

Let's just say that the first day without crutches was a huge success however, my ankle wasn't to happy so Sunday, the day that it was nice and sunny outside. I spent that day, IN BED. 

Somehow it just didn't seem right but hey, rainy Saturday was just as fun!

Monday, May 14, 2018


We all like when summer comes. 

Especially if you are an author.

We get to read some of our favorite authors but it is also a chance for us to make some new fans. 

We bring out our books, past and present. Dust them off, sometimes get a new cover and hope to attract those readers that are willing to give a new author a chance. And some older authors a chance as well.

So here are a few covers of books that you should give a try.

 There is something for everyone; so make sure to pick up one, two or all of them.

Monday, May 7, 2018


What are you dreaming of?

Is it to write full time? Is it to vacation all the time? Is it to stop your 9-5 and do what you really want to do with your career?

Well, what are you waiting for?

It's true. Time waits for no one and time never stands still.

I know all to well that waiting does nothing but make you lose time.

Why are you afraid to do what you want in life?

Do you think that the inventor of Facebook decided he wanted to wait and start a new social media site?

Do you think that millionaires waited until they had enough money in the bank to begin investing in what they really wanted to do?

Everyone starts from zero. Everyone has the same opportunity to begin something from scratch. However, it is what you do with opportunity when it comes knocking.

Sometimes, it will never knock. Sometimes you have to be willing to tap "opportunity" on the shoulder and meet it where it is.

That's right. Go after what you want. Go after what you feel passionate about.

Don't wait for it to come to you, go after it.

Remember, dreaming of something doesn't make it happen.

Making it happen takes not only guts but it will make that dream a reality in no time.

Monday, April 23, 2018


I don't recall the year and it's the only date that I don't remember.

Well I don't want to ever remember the day that my bonus daughter left us to take up residence in heaven.

I was at work and remember getting the call. I screamed in my car for almost three minutes.

We celebrated her life at the beach. We released her, in what can only be called, a surreal moment.

We knew we wanted her ashes to be left at the beach. But how?

Suddenly a school of dolphins swam almost to shore and literally stayed while we cried and looked at the sunset. It was as if they were waiting for us to give Crystal to them.

Dolphins were a favorite of hers.

Her dad, +Austin Camacho, swam out and released her into the ocean and then, just like that...the dolphins swam away.

We were all shocked and began to laugh. 

That is the only way Chrystal would have wanted to be released. Perfect, right?

Not quite.

We arrived home and found a small bush waiting on the porch for us and there was a beautifully written card from one of our author friends.

The card said that the flowers that would bloom would remind us of our beautiful daughter. Thank you +DB Corey and wife for this tree.

This year is no different. The blooms came back and every year; we stand and stare at them. We each share our memories and for me; seeing that tree every year with it's perfect blooms, reminds me that our girl is still with us.

Thank you Chrystal for being in my life. 

I know you are still with us. The hummingbirds remind us and so does this flowering tree.

Monday, April 16, 2018


Spring came upon us in March. 

Winter came back two days later.

What is going on?

If you are a writer, you can use this time to write some really great novels or scenes. A murder that occurs as a new snowstorm blankets DC or a romance that happens on that first warm day that allows you to sit outside.

We have to use everything around us to make our novels realistic when we can.

How many times have we read a novel and thought, that can't happen? Or why did they do that?

Readers will take you to task if you get a detail wrong. 

Of course they think they know every location in your novel because they have been there, even if it doesn't exist.


Because they identify with the descriptions that you set forth.

You should always allow your surroundings to envelope your writing. It will be a new dimension to your writing.

So get out from that office, or reading nook. Take your laptop, sunglasses and a nice snack and head to your local park. Grab a park bench and just sit for a few minutes then, write that scene that you thought you were stuck on.

Getting out into the fresh air does more than clear your head, it actually gives you ideas.

So Spring is here...take full advantage...the weather is warmer and so are your ideas.

Monday, March 26, 2018


Well here it is March 23rd (at the time of me writing this) and I am making the best of life.

I survived a snow storm on the second day of spring. 

I survived major surgery on Feb. 26th and I survived a severely broken ankle, foot and leg on Feb. 18th.

I'd say I have no choice but to make the best out of the life I am living.

It seems as if I have been living a nightmare for the past year. Things have gone steadily downhill, in terms of my health.

But you know what?

I'm still here; making the best out of my life.

See I could have given up, thrown in the towel and just gotten so down on life that I could have been miserable.

Now, this is not to say that I didn't.

I had my bouts with depression. 

I was on total bed rest for four (4) weeks. I had some really dedicated people in my life that shopped for me, brought me lunch and dinner and even bought my wine! They made me laugh and see how much they loved me.

I will never forgot them for making me see the sunshine when all I wanted to do was see clouds

So I started making the best of my situation.

I finished a novel! Yippee

I finished up my travel agent certification! Yippee

I even finished up my AA degree! Yippee.

It's amazing what you can do when you have time. 

I made the best out of my life and now that I am able to get out of the house. (I'm still in a cast for another four weeks) I am living life to the best of my ability.

Are you?

Monday, February 26, 2018


Well, I have done now. 

I broke my ankle in two places and a bone in my foot. 

So, what do I do now?

Since I am on total bed rest, I am going to finish up my novel The Stiletto Stalker.

I'm on bed rest for at least three weeks and this will give me enough time to finish up my novel and edits and then begin working on finishing up The Teachers Lounge.

I am not a person who can sit still for any length of time but this is making me sit still. 

Someone said, "You never sit still so you needed something to make you sit still".

That made me think. Most people my age (51) are working, enjoying a simple life and doing things that they love.

I am no different. I live my life, I enjoy adventure and vacations and that is what I love doing. 

I'm 51 not 91. And even if I was, does that mean that I can't go out dancing every week, hanging with my friends for happy hour once a week or going on mini vacations whenever my bank account says I can?

Most people say that they will "wait until they retire to travel and really enjoy life." Why should I do that? Why should I wait? Why should I do what most people would do? 

Even my grown children say, "Mom you should slow down" No ma'am and no sir, I will not.

I want to live a life that I enjoy. I don't ask anyone for anything. I pay for my own trips and I pay for the life that I want. 

IF you choose to wait, than that is your choice. I choose not to. That's my choice. 

So, while I have to be on complete bed rest., I will finish up my novels but just as I am sitting in bed writing this blog; I have just booked my trip to the Bahamas in December.

So either you choose the life you want or let others tell you what you should be doing.

Which one will you do? I think you know my choice. 

Monday, February 12, 2018


I know that you have been thinking...whatever happened with the tiny house?
Tiny House Builder and us
My tiny house builder

Well, nothing.

Plain and simple.

I am still raising money for it and my hope is that by the end of this year I will have the TINY HOUSE of my dreams!

sample lay out
I started a GoFund me page Tiny Bowman House and people are contributing. I thank all of you that have done so and I hope that more of you will help me realize my dream of owning my tiny house.

See the thing is; banks don't finance tiny homes. They say there "is no collateral" that you can offer for us to finance it.

Well, excuse me. The tiny house is on WHEELS, so if I don't pay, you can simple, hire a towing company and come and take the house. You know, like banks do when you miss a car payment.

So, why is it that banks won't offer this kind of loan?

If they want people to own their own homes; why not let the people choose the type of home they want to own.
My actual tiny house plans

My tiny house is my dream house! Plain and simple.

I used to want a 3,500 sq foot house. I wanted a basement, a pool and at least 5 bedrooms. Now; my needs have changed. I no longer need something so large that it would take me a day to clean. I want something that fits me.

Just Me!

So my tiny house would be the perfect fit...for me.

So, my tiny house update is:
My living room/kitchen
I haven't given up on owning my tiny dream house. It's just taking a little longer to actually get the money to do it.

So, instead of asking for house warming gifts; I'm asking for house donating gifts.

Remember, when I get my tiny house; all of you will get a chance to name it. In case you want a jump on naming it. Here are a few pictures; that can give you a sense of what it will look like.

Monday, February 5, 2018


Say what you want, but my new best friends are exactly how I want them. 
They do not talk, complain, want anything from me and just are here to take care of me and to help me feel better. They are here when I need them the most and although I just met one of them, this week, they have been my everything for the past five days.

I want you to meet my new besties.

Tamiful was introduced to me on Wednesday night; although we didn't officially meet until Thursday morning. You see, I woke up at 2 am early Thursday morning thinking I had been involved in a car accident. My body hurt, I had a massive headache and let's just say that my throat felt like HELL was inside of it. I should have known the warning signs on Wednesday night. I had chills; but that is nothing new to me because I am always cold. But then I broke out in a sweat like I had just run a marathon in 100 degree weather. No matter, one of my partners was celebrating his birthday, so I couldn't ruin his night, right? Fast forward to 2 am. 
Waking up feeling like I had been hit by two trucks, then backed over by a bus and then thrown down a flight of stairs is putting it mildly. My body hurt so bad that even my eyelashes felt like they were revolting against me and trying to go back into my skin. Not a really good feeling. 
Press on I told myself. So I lay there; in agony and decided; well it's almost time to get up for work; I'll go take a nice long hot shower and be good as new.

Yeah, well that plan didn't go as planned. 
After the shower, I barely made it back to the bed. I lay on my back, still wet from the shower (no, I didn't have the energy to even dry myself off, so me and my wet body lay on my sheets; soaking them through and then feeling as if I was lying in molten lava. Yep; you guessed it I was sweating again but this time I knew. Something in my head said; you may have the flu. No No No and Hell NO! I have heard about it and I was NOT about to get it.
Yeah, OK.

By 6 am, I knew. I had the flu. I didn't need a doctor to tell me that. I just knew it. My head was pounding. My body felt like I was now going 12 rounds with a UFC champion and my throat...well that was as hot as Nevada in July. drinking water was the only way to help my mouth stay wet. Did I mention the dry mouth that I experienced was like I had sucked on a cactus for weeks. Bottle after bottle, I poured down my throat. I can't say that I swallowed it. That hurt to much, so I just let is slide down my throat. Once I learned not to put to much in my worked out like a charm. Oh and then it happened. I needed to go to Patient First. Not a bad experience, if I must say so myself. They knew IMMEDIATELY it was the flu. The headache was the first sign. Who knew? Well within an hour, I had my diagnosis and I was on my way to CVS for another one of my new best friends. TAMIFLU

We got to know each other very well and let me tell you. Although it does NOT cure the flu; it makes the symptoms so much more tolerable. No; it didn't alleviate them but it made them become less hostile and more like a distant cousin. You know the one. You enjoy them a little but glad when they are gone. Not that I enjoyed them, but I appreciated them a little more. 

You see, had I not woken up feeling like I had been in an accident. And actually asking the question; "where we involved in an accident last night" I would have just thought I partied a little to hard in the last week and would have went to work, spread my germs and been even more miserable.

Now, I am not fully recovered, five days later. But I am on the road there now. I have taken to my new best friend, Ginger....ale and she and I are handling my stomach just fine right now. 

My energy level is not there yet. It has taken me two hours to write this blog. Why? Because I can't sit up long enough to finish it in one sitting. 

Take heed all of you people going to work with the sniffle, cough or just a little cold. It makes some of us more likely to get the flue. Yes, two people at my place of employment had the flu; came to work and I'm not saying I got it from them, I'm just saying. People, you have PTO or sick leave...use it! 

So, tomorrow, if I am feeling like I can make it to work, I'll be there. But be warned. I am carrying my new boyfriend with me. 

Lysol Wipes and Spray, you have been warned.

Monday, January 15, 2018


So I decided to go organic/healthier for the next six month. 

So, I walked into an organic store in  Bowie and I noticed one thing immediately; it was FREEZING in the store. Even the clerks were walking around with big sweaters on. I asked one of the ladies; why is it so cold in here. She said that organic stores keeps the temperatures down slightly lower than regular stores because the food is 'all natural and can spoil much quicker." The weather was the other factor. (DC was in the middle of a brutal cold spell the first week in January)

Undeterred, I wrapped my scarf around my neck and pressed on. I found some amazing finds on meats and bulk rice, oatmeal and spices. 

I didn't buy anything because I wasn't going home until the following day. 

Fast forward to Monday (Jan. 8) and I decided, I am doing it. I'm going to go to Whole Foods.

Yes, the store was cold but I was prepared.  Scarf, hat and gloves ready, I parked in the garage and set off!


I found what I was looking for but was also given some great tips by the nice man in the meat department. No, not like at your local stores. This was ACTUALLY a meat department. 
The guy was back there; waiting for you to tell him what you wanted and then would cut,weigh and package your meat for you. You know like in the 70's. The brown paper wrapping that I was so in love with when watching shows like I Love Lucy and Leave It To Beaver. ( I always wanted to buy my meat like that, go figure)

1. Never buy more food than you will consume in a week. Organic food is best kept in the fridge NOT the freezer.
2. It may be expensive but look at it in these terms. My shopping trip cost me $56.72. On average I spend about $113 every couple of weeks. Broken down; I am actually spending the same amount of money; although making more trips to the store. However, not spending anymore in gas because it is on the way home; so win-win for me.  
3. Organic milk is better for you but remember to SHAKE it before using it. Also it comes in glass bottles so take them back for your refund. Every little bit helps. 
4. It is more expensive but the health benefits are worth it.
5. Most organic/natural food markets will custom cut any meat you would like. 
6. Most eggs come from free range chickens.
7. Most beef is grass fed with no antibodies added.
8. No nitrates are used in organic bacon. 

I wanted pork chops but didn't want the thick cut they offered. The butcher worked with me and I ended up with 4 thin sliced pork chops for the cost of what 2 thick chops would be.  I could immediately taste the difference!

So for the next six months; I am going to be all organic/natural when it comes to my food. I am going to see if this helps with my energy and sleep levels.

Would you go organic knowing that the food is much more expensive but healthier? 

Sometimes we have to make a choice. Convenience or Healthy?

Monday, January 8, 2018


Every year I post about tax season.

Every year I get asked the same question.

Do I have to itemize my author expenses?

The real question should be, why AREN'T you itemizing your author expenses?

Whenever you do anything as an author; you should have a small notebook that you keep in your "author bag" and in your car. (You DO have an author bag, don't you)  More on that in a different blog.

So when you bought your own 'stock' of novels; you kept those receipts, right? Write them off

When you drove over 100 miles for that book signing; you took note of your mileage and gas, right?

When you paid for those conferences and workshops; you did keep those confirmations and receipts; right?

When you bought those comfortable shoes; that you ONLY wear for your book signings. Because you don't sit down while you are at an event; except to sign your novel. You did keep that receipt, right?

See, there are  a lot of hidden deductions that you have.

What about that new laptop or desktop that you bought to only do your novels on. How about when you turned that extra bedroom into your writing den, you do know that part of that can be written off.

Now, I am NO TAX EXPERT but I do know that most things that require payment, should be done separate from your daily and household budgeted items. I also know that they can be written off but you need a TAX PROFESSIONAL to do that for you.

So; are you ready for tax season?

If you are not; begin by finding those receipts that you can easily put your hands on. Then after you do that, get yourself a small notebook that you can keep with you at all times. 

You never know WHEN a deduction may happen.

Tuesday, January 2, 2018


I made it a question because some of you are going to wonder...what is so happy about the new year?

Well, for one; you made it to see another year.

Second, you are an amazing author or soon to be one.

Third, you actually have readers/fans who await your next novel.

There are at least three reasons why it's a happy new year.

Can you think of more? 

I can.

I'm happy that an old year has passed and that I learned some valuable lessons in 2017. I learned that no matter how strong, healthy or independent you think you are; there is always something that will prove you wrong.

I also learned that there is nothing wrong with asking for help.

This year will be great. Not because of anything that I do; but because of everything that I want.

I want health, happiness and contentment for 2018.

What do you want in the new year?