Monthly Wrap-Up: February Edition

February has been both an exhaustive and exhilarating month. I have probably accomplished more in the last 29 days than I have in years. Here are just a few of my writing highlights:

I have been participating in the following challenges and blog hops:

I also wrote some new poetry and haiku during the month, as well as some poetry that won’t be published on any of my blogs. I am saving those for my chapbook.

In stats:

I followed 403 new blogs on WordPress this month, 96 new blogs on Blogger and 3 new blogs on Weebly. Most of those are in anticipation of the A-to-Z Challenge in April.

In other news, I bought the following books in February:

Currently I am reading:

Upcoming News for March:

I will be writing a month-long Noir-style serial over at A Whispered Wind

Well, that about wraps up my month of February.

What have you accomplished in February? Share your thoughts with me in comments.




02.29.16 – End of Day Notes

What I did today: Sleep was a fitful endeavor. My feet continued to burn and ache long into the night. I think I finally fell asleep around 3 am. Thus, I was late waking up this morning and probably would have remained asleep if there hadn’t been a knock on the screen door. The interloper was sent away and since I was now up, I remained up. I dove into my writing and managed to get all of it completed. The sun was bright and it was warm-ish today, so I sat out on the front porch for a bit. Now it is time to complete my notes for my upcoming story tomorrow.

What I learned today: My life is quite content and I am comfortable in my own skin.

What I am most proud of today: I finished all of my Horror Tales for February. 29 stories. Plus an extra Leap Day story. Life is good!

What did you do today? Learn any lessons? Have a reason to be proud? Share your thoughts with me in the comments!

#MondayMusings – Where Has the Love Gone?


Lately, I’ve been reflecting a lot on Loving-Kindness and Compassion. I’ve been researching some of the people who’ve inspired me over my life and most of them, in one way or another, practice these.

With the current political climate in the US, I wonder if any of the candidates on both sides of the aisle even know what these words mean. I see so much mudslinging and hatred coming out of the mouths of these would-be leaders. Where is the compassion for all life? Where is the love for those not like one’s self? None of these so-called great men or women even touch on these subjects. They choose to divide us by telling us all of the things that separate us from one another. It is no wonder that I am ambivalent about even voting these days. I’ve resolved that until there is a candidate who stands for love and compassion and runs a clean candidacy, then I will exercise my right not to vote.  I just cannot choose a lesser evil when they are all equally evil.

I long for the days of peacemakers like Martin Luther King, Jr., Gandhi and Robert Kennedy. Perhaps I am merely a dreamer. Perhaps these great men were mere angels sent here to guide us and found us not worthy. Perhaps this is why there are so few great peacemakers left in the world. And perhaps this is why I am drawn toward Eastern Philosophies and these practices of Mindfulness, Loving-Kindness and Compassion.

I would love to here YOUR thoughts on this. Please share them with me in comments.



I am also linking this to Inspire Me Monday

Come join us and share something Inspiring today!

Share Your World – 2016 Week 9


for Cee’s Share Your World

Have you done something you truly want to do today? Yes, I wrote this story and this one too. I’ve been anxiously anticipating both of them for weeks now.

What can you help the world with? by practicing loving-kindness and compassion every day

If life was ‘just a bowl of cherries’… which fruit other than a cherry would you be..? I would be a coconut. Hard outer shell, soft and sweet flakiness inside. You have to work to crack my hard, darkened outer shell, but once you get in, you will find a crazy sweet personality on the inside.

Quotes List: At least three of your favorite quotes?

  • “Thou art to me a delicious torment.” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • “If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him. … We need not wait to see what others do.” ~Mahatma Gandhi
  • “There are those who look at things the way they are, and ask why… I dream of things that never were, and ask why not?” ~Robert F. Kennedy

Bonus question:  

What are you grateful for from last week – for last week, I am grateful for all of the wonderful bloggers who have joined me on my journey of writing, for their likes and comments, for the dedication to my blogs.

and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up? Tomorrow I begin a new writing journey. Into the dark, sinister world of Noir literature. I will be writing a WhoDunIt for the entire month of March. I am both excited and a bit nervous about the whole ordeal, but I like the challenge of it.

02.28.16 – End of Day Notes

What I did today: I went to bed at 9 pm last night and woke up at 2 am. This has made for a more productive day. I’ve completed writing projects, tackled some emails, and read some posts from challenges. I am not caught  up by any means, but I have made some progress.

What I learned today: This and This for research

What I am most proud of today: I’ve managed to stay awake all day and even though I am a bit sleepy, I am hoping to make it until 9 pm.

What did you do today? Learn any lessons? Have a reason to be proud? Share your thoughts with me in the comments!

Song Lyric Sunday – Cirice by Ghost B.C.

for Song Lyric Sunday


My brother recently introduced me to a Swedish Heavy Metal band named Ghost B.C. (sometimes just referred to as Ghost). I absolutely love the guitar rips and their music reminds me a bit of Metallica. Very dramatic. This is some really pumped-up music and great for writing, at least it is for me *bigcheesygrin* It also delights my dark soul. The lead singer calls himself Papa Emeritus and the other group members are referred to as merely Nameless Ghouls. This song, Cirice, earned them the 2016 Grammy Award for Best Metal Performance.

“Cirice” by Ghost B.C. Lyrics from AZLyrics

I feel your presence amongst us
You cannot hide in the darkness
Can you hear the rumble?
Can you hear the rumble that’s calling?

I know your soul is not tainted
Even though you’ve been told so
Can you hear the rumble?
Can you hear the rumble that’s calling?

I can feel the thunder that’s breaking in your heart
I can see through the scars inside you
I can feel the thunder that’s breaking in your heart
I can see through the scars inside you

A candle casting a faint glow
You and I see eye to eye
Can you hear the thunder?
Can you hear the thunder that’s breaking?

Now there is nothing between us
From now our merge is eternal
Can’t you see that you’re lost?
Can’t you see that you’re lost without me?

I can feel the thunder that’s breaking in your heart
I can see through the scars inside you
I can feel the thunder that’s breaking in your heart
I can see through the scars inside you

Can’t you see that you’re lost without me?

I can feel the thunder that’s breaking in your heart
I can see through the scars inside you
I can feel the thunder that’s breaking in your heart
I can see through the scars inside you

For your listening pleasure, the video:


02.27.16 – End of Day Notes

What I did today: Today started late again. I really need to get out of this pattern of going to bed between 2-3 am and getting up late. I write better at night, always have. I need to be on a night schedule again.Three am has always been a better time for me to wake up. So I think I will go to bed early tonight and hopefully wake up around that time. I got all of my writing projects completed and even a couple challenges done. I watched The Postman Always Rings Twice as my final movie for research tonight. For the next two days, I will be plotting out my WhoDunIt story. Two horror stories left to write. It hardly seems like February began and now it is ending. I plan on catching up some on emails and posts from challenges tomorrow.

What I learned today: I get so little done by sleeping in.

What I am most proud of today: My writing… I feel like I am improving tremendously as a storyteller. I am still not a great one, but a decent one nonetheless. I still have a lot to learn.

What did you do today? Learn any lessons? Have a reason to be proud? Share your thoughts with me in the comments!

Saturday 9 – The Times of Your Life (1976)

Saturday 9: The Times of Your Life (1976)

Unfamiliar with this week’s tune? Hear it here.

1) This song is all about memories. How far back can you remember? What’s your earliest memory? Memories are difficult for me. I had a childhood illness that screwed up my long-term memory. I do remember waking up on the operating table at around 6 years of age while having my tonsils removed. Unfortunately, my short-term memory is fading too.

2) The first line is “Good morning, yesterday.” What do you remember about yesterday morning? I remember getting up far too late. I generally try to get up between 6-8 am, but it was well after 10 am before I rolled out of bed. I made coffee and began writing.

3) This song was originally a 60-second jingle, featured in a commercial for Kodak film. Do you ever use film? Or are all your pictures digital? I used to use film, but in 2014, I bought my first digital camera. I rarely use it though.

4) Who took the most recent photo of you? I did, about 4 years ago. No, I do not like having my picture taken.

5) This week’s featured artist, Paul Anka, was born in Canada and enjoyed appearing in a made-for-TV Perry Mason movie with fellow Canadian, Raymond Burr. Do you enjoy courtroom dramas? I love them! I watched Perry Mason growing up and still enjoy Law & Order.

6) At 15, Anka won a supermarket contest by collecting the most Campbell soup can wrappers. The prize was a trip to New York. Do you enter contests and sweepstakes? Play the lottery? I rarely enter contests, unless they deal with writing. No to sweepstakes. And only occasionally play the lottery.

7) This year Paul Anka performed throughout Florida (Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Clearwater and Fort Myers). The Sunshine State is a popular vacation destination. Do you have a favorite spot in Florida? Afraid not. I’ve never visited the state. If I ever did go, I would probably go to Palm Beach.

8) In 1976, the year this song was on the charts, an earthquake hit China. Have you ever experienced an earthquake? Only once. It was a small quake when I lived in Oklahoma.

9) Random question: Do you know CPR? Yep, but I am rusty at it. Should probably get a refresher course.

#WeekendCoffeeShare – 02.27.16


If we were having coffee, I would serve you some delicious savory crackers and cheese with a cup of organic decaf coffee. It is late in the afternoon and I wouldn’t want you to stay up all night. We would sit by the fire in comfy, over-stuffed chairs as it is mighty chilly here in Virginia today.

If we were having coffee, I would lean in close and whisper to you.

“I almost decided not to share coffee and a conversation today. My life is a bore.”

But then I remembered that this is the last chance to share coffee with you before March. Wouldn’t want to end the month without sharing something.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you of the movies I have watched the past couple of weeks for research.

“You see,” I would say, “next month I am writing a WhoDunIt over at A Whispered Wind. It will be in a film noir style. So I needed all the research I could get.”

I would give you a list of the movies, because well, I like lists:

  • He Walked by Night (1948)
  • The Strange Woman (1946)
  • The Red House (1947)
  • Too Late for Tears (1949)
  • Mike Hammer’s Kiss Me Deadly (1955)
  • Beat the Devil (1953)
  • Notorious (1946)
  • Penny Serenade (1941)
  • Jigsaw (1949)
  • Citizen Kane (1941)
  • The 39 Steps (1935)
  • The Maltese Falcon (1941)
  • D.O.A. (1950)
  • The Postman Always Rings Twice (1946)

I would tell you how fascinating all of those movies were and how much great research I derived from them.

“Film Noir has always fascinated me,” I would tell you. “The suspense, the darkness, the adventure!”

If we were having coffee, I would tell you about how sad I am to see February end as it marks the end of my Horror Tales. And then I would laugh and tell you, “There’s always June, though,” and wink.

If we were having coffee, I would have to apologize and tell you that although my life is boring, my muses aren’t and they are demanding that I get back to my writing. So I would have to cut our conversation short this week. I would thank you for stopping by and give you a tin of the savory crackers to take home with you.

“Bundle up! I will see you next week!” I would shout and wave as you wandered off into the late afternoon chill.

If we were having coffee, what would YOU tell me? Let me know in comments!


This delightful coffee share is brought to you by Part-Time Monster and friends.


02.26.16 – End of Day Notes

What I did today: It’s been an odd day. I stayed awake until about 4:30 this morning and got back up around 11 am. I finished my writing, read a few emails, at a late breakfast and was sitting here freezing my arse off. So I just said “fuck it” and crawled back into bed. I thought my calendar would alert me around 6 pm so I could get back up, but I had it sitting open on the desktop and the alarm didn’t go off, so I slept until 7 pm. Woke up, got some hot tea, turned on my small heater and settled down to read some posts for challenges. I am caught up with last Saturday’s posts now. Still have the rest of the week to read. Way behind on emails, per usual. Will try to read some of those tonight. My entertainment tonight will consist of The Maltese Falcon (for research) and then another X-Men movie (for pleasure), if I manage to stay out of my bed long enough to watch them both. The sleep demons are already attacking me and I’ve only been up for 2 hours. Maybe I need a pot of coffee instead of this tea.

What I learned today: A cold me is a miserable me. My bed knows how to tempt me too easily.

What I am most proud of today: Not sure, if anything… maybe that although I napped, it wasn’t half the night? Probably not that proud of a moment, huh?

What did you do today? Learn any lessons? Have a reason to be proud? Share your thoughts with me in the comments!