*

*

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Snagged Second Season of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer"








Yesterday, my husband and I went to lunch at a place called Busters. The owner and his wife used to run a video rental place in a nearby town about a dozen years ago. Some of the videos he sold as well. Now as time has gone by and we've gone into the DVD age, that shop closed, and the hamburger place is sort of a hodgepodge of his DVD, poster/picture memorabilia around the dining area. DVD's, CD's as well as albums and pictures of the famous musicians (Like the Beatles, or the Stones, etc) on sale.




While waiting for our turkey burgers, Dennis and I looked around for something that caught my attention. I did find a DVD (special issue) of “Da Vinci Code”--and I'd never seen the movie but loved the book. He had no prices on these, and I knew he probably had each of these in special sections and prices for each.




In the meantime, our wonderful turkey burgers and fries came. While we sat and watched “Password” on the TV in front of us, Dennis spotted a “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” DVD set. Turned out to be the second season. I really had been looking for a second hand DVD of any of the Buffy seasons. I knew that second season was one I had not seen recently. We bought it for $10. Nice. The “Da Vinci Code” was $5 but I wanted the Buffy shows most of all—something I'd coveted for years and years to own.



I was pretty sure I hadn't see this season, and that they would pretty much be new to me. I popped it in, and watched one show, because I wanted to get my fix. I was right, I'd not seen these shows, except perhaps in re-runs, and suddenly even those went off the FX station—which I can only get if I go on vacation. So the only way to see my Buffy shows are to own them. Thus, I've begun a collection. Finally I can watch Buffy and get my fix whenever I want. I watched 3 shows in total yesterday. I loved when they introduced Spike and Drusilla in the show.



Also, one bit of news on my writing; I sent off my copy of the second book to Copperhill Media today.



Also, I managed to add some more to book 3. I'm on page 183 now. But way shy of a full book! Well, I'll add more to these scenes, no doubt. Other scenes will come to me. It was nice to get into this book full tilt, working out the mystery as well as bringing in the dangers of the world she's in, and the ever present unstable condition of how Drakulya might react to anything Sabrina does.



I'm not worried about the length right now as this is only a first draft. I'll be adding more details about the clothes, and things surrounding them in this other world in the second drafts whenever I get to do it. First drafts usually take me a good year to flesh out (since I work full time and this summer I'm working 5 days a week for the first time). I believe I began the third book in August of last year, working it as an "in between" book, so to speak.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

A Quick Post for Saturday

Hey all. Last night I lost blogspot. But that's okay. I had to do a little work on the third book.



Today I'm mailing in my second book--it's on a disk. This is the only way I can get it to them. Anyway, I'm nervous. Why am I nervous? I have no idea. Whenever I do something out of the norm I get nerves. Silly me.




Yesterday I posted and made note that I'd begun another blog, here on blogspot. This is my writing journal--thus the title Lorelei's Writing Journal, and I've placed a widget to the side for anyone who wishes to stop by, but the link can be clicked on in this post as well. Yesterday, I was surprised to find on my stats I'd already gotten two hits. Hah! Germany. My name is very famous in Germany, thus, I guess I shouldn't have been too surprised. I get German visits all the time here and at other blogs. So, welcome all to all my blogs! I'm about 3/4 German, along with Norwegian, and some Scotch/Irish, French Canadian (although I'm not sure where the French Canadian came from, it might be my Indian heritage).



Today I posted about Dracula--the historical one--from my notes a while back. I keep a writing journal on each and every book. Do you do this? I keep a written one, of course, I then keep


(1. a document on all the characters as I develop them--this is better to do, because you can change, delete ones you no longer want, change the spelling and so forth.


(2. I also keep an ongoing journal on ideas. I date my entries, and I also use the navigator to bookmark certain passages which might be important to me and I'll want to look things up quickly. This holds down all the paper in a notebook you'd have to go through, by doing it on your computer and in a separate document.



Okay, I have to get ready to go to town, get to the bank and deposit checks and mail my book off.


Have a great Saturday, everyone!

Friday, May 27, 2011

It's Friday, and I'm posting as if it's the 13th again!





I know it isn't the 13th, but it is Friday. And things are still screwed up here at blogspot, but I'm able to post, and so will do so, and need to let you all know: I CAN'T LEAVE A COMMENT UNDER MY NAME/GOOGLE ID. Thus I must use "Anonymous" but I will try and remember to place my name into the comment at end so you know it's me [=


Be that as it may, I've started up my 6th blog here at blogspot. "WHAT?!!!"


You heard me. My sixth one is simply called Lorelei's Journal. It's my writing journal. You can pick it up by clicking on the above link. I needed a place where I could just post/write about writing. My writing, mainly, my thoughts on characters. I might merely be thinking about future books, and maybe even commenting on other author's books in as far as they relate to what I'm writing, or maybe just to mutter boldly about something that may be insignificant to you, but more significant to me. I might even post about how well the book(s) is/are doing. Like just on Wednesday, I saw that my eBook had hit--not an all time high, but it hadn't been quite so high in a while--and it's really confusing to explain it to someone like my husband. But the # is how it ranks against other books out of several thousand individual books which are selling on the same day and in that hour it is posted. It was at #40,508 on Wednesday. It had been really down in the low #180's and even lower for about two weeks. I was nervous. But it picked back up. I know if people find out about the book I'm sure they'll want to buy it. That's why getting on people's blogs as a host is very important if you want to get the word out about your book. Half your work is done once you get the book written. I think getting it published is about 1/4th and promotions another 1/4th.


I'm still at a disadvantage as to how many eBooks sells until I get my royalty statement. Amazon sure as heck isn't going to tell you too much, I guess. But the physical books are shown, for some reason. Sort of a cool tool, and I didn't even know about it until I sort of stumbled upon it one day!


My friend, Sumiko, of Sumiko's Reads on this blog has read the next Sookie book up from what I'm reading. I'm currently reading Dead in the Family. She and I will compare notes on what we thought of this one, and I thought it would be fun to give our individual slants on it here, once we put our heads together. I'm almost finished and will get it done this weekend. I need another book to read!!!! I'm going to go with Cold Magic by Kate Elliott. I sort of need something different to read. And I always like to check out new authors. Besides, I'm on Kate's facebook, so, I feel I owe her some feedback once I get done.


So, there you have it for today. I love blogspot. I just hope they get these things fixed soon. They are aware of the problems (I went to something where it posts about problems they are aware of), so I'm hopeful this is resolved soon.


I'm not sure if my voting thing is working properly (at the left), I know that Heather was going to vote, and I'm sure she did, but I'm not seeing results. I'm wondering if it has gone the way of my "followers"? I can't see them, either. I have no idea who over the last month has joined my following list, unless they've made a comment. So, don't think I'm ignoring you if I have not come over to your blog, I simply can't see who you all are! Crazy Internet!


Everyone have a safe and wonderful Memorial Day Weekend!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Crawling out of the Grave

Well, took me a few days to figure this out. I still could not come to my blog from my desktop, and so presumed it was still out. So I tried another way in and saw that while there was no place at my blog that said "new Post' it had it at my dashboard. I'm a slow learner! But, we'll see if I'm able to post, or if this is all a dream. And then there's the commenting as well.

I got home today to learn that my husband had rearranged my office.

Oh, no you say?

Oh YES, I say.

My husband has the knack of organization down. He can organize anything from a simple drawer of junk to a room, and even to a whole warehouse (yes, he did that once), and I think someone could use his expertise, but unfortunately, nary the two shall meet, I suppose.

Anyway, my couch is now away from both doors, and is now on the north wall, next to a window, and away from the windows where we'll put the a.c., he placed the two black lacquer bookcases over on the wall next to the doors and they fit beautifully.

Next he transformed my wobbly table into something more stable and with left-overs from the counter top, I've got myself a great table to write at!

I still need an actual desk. Perhaps I'll get that someday. Hopefully this year.

What with all the bad weather, being under the threat of tornadoes and such, I've been carrying around with me a disk of the next book! You couldn't blame me, I'm sure. And if you go to my facebook page, you'll find my link to the first chapter of the next book--if you have not had the chance to read this excerpt from Vampire's Trill, as yet, that is. If you're new here, and would like to become a friend on facebook, please do that, if you'd like.

My friend, Dora Dee, is excited that she just recieved my book, Vampire Ascending, in the mail yesterday--which she won in the contest earlier this month. I'm sure she is reading this whenever she has time! She has been quite a supporter over on both my book's facebook page and on mine. I'm so happy for her!

I've had another young lady who learned I have a vampire book out and she has wanted to get her hands on a copy, and told me today that she was going to get it this weekend. I hope she does, I know she's been excited about buying for a couple of months now. She told me as soon as she got her first check from her new job she was going to buy it. I told her I was going to get her hooked on my books *evil laugh here*.

So, I hope that things are back to normal here at blogspot. I really couldn't do without it.

Oh, and if you're reading this post, and have read Vampire Ascending, please take a little extra time out and vote on your favorite male character in the book, upper left side at the very top of my blog. I love to see who everyone liked the best. There's Nicolas, Vasyl, Bjorn, and Dante. I sort of think Dante will win. See if I'm right.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Rapture or Not, This is a Great Day!

Okay, I'm pretty sure the sky did not open up yesterday and the Rapture did not happen as predicted. *mopping brow now*

I found this picture and couldn't help myself. Really. I couldn't. [devious laughter]

My husband and I went for a walk out in our park--the south end, since it's new and has rushing water over large limestone boulders that sort of reminds us of places a thousand miles away from here (but isn't by a long shot), and admired some of the spring flowers coming up.
We are beginning to see the warmer, more humid temperatures leak up this way, so, my husband put in one air conditioner in our dining room. Now he is to rest. He wasn't supposed to do anything like this, but I can't control him. Honestly.

Meanwhile I did some house cleaning--a near spring cleaning. I did a little more than I'd intended, as I wanted to get the one extra book case (there were 3), out of my office so I could open up the windows and let some air in. Sort of crowded in here. We had it in here to make room to accommodate the kitchen stuff which we stored in living room and dining room. Almost there. Almost.

I've been reading Janet Evanovich's Wicked Apatite, and I'm not sure if I want to review it, as it took me half way into the book to actually find some enjoyable moments. Plus, I'm not quite done with it. I'll have to say right now it isn't really a great read, as her Stephanie Plum character leaks into this other character a little too much. I hate to give bad reviews, so I think I'll just pass on giving one at all on this one.

I'm reading Charlaine Harris' book too, and so far it's a good read. A bit better than the last one, but again, I'm not finished and want hold my review for the end of this one.

I've been working on descriptions of my next book, and find from time to time I've worked something new, or slightly changed a line here or there, and just did so now. I may just put that up for a post this week. Trying to find some poignant picture to go with it, however. There is no way of knowing what my publisher will find for the cover of the next book. I'd like to see gloved hands--the gloves are black lace--with claws slicing through the ends, while clutching a dagger. How's that strike you?

All for the time being. I hope everyone is fine after yesterday's (bogus) End of The World parties.

I think it's almost time for strawberries on lactose free vanilla ice cream. What do you like as a cool-off in hot weather?

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Lilac Thoughts





I just thought this was a pretty picture of a western bluebird on a lilac, so I'm sharing it.


Lilacs have to be my favorite flower, and, as all of them, they don't last long. And watching birds is a favorite past-time, since our yard is surrounded by the forest preserve on 3 sides. Watching the male cardinal feed his female is a sweet thing to see. It's like he's saying, "Here, you need this more than me, you have to feed 4 or 5."


There's other things on my mind. I've just sent off an application for my copyrights. I don't know how this slipped my mind but I want to thank Katie Salidas for reminding me (all of us) on this post she did on copyrights. We might all want to take a look at this post for sure. It answers the business about piracy of books by unscrupulous people who try to sell other (self-published eBooks) author's works as their own. It is important to get the copyright put through as soon as possible. I don't know why I waited on this. I sure won't wait on the next one.


But if you are at this point with a book. Congratulations. You'll want to go to www.copyright.gov and got to the TX file. You will be able to print out the whole PDF file, which includes the instructions which you will want to read very carefully. I remember doing this with my Spell of the Black Unicorn book--my first book. That was pretty exciting in itself. The cost for the disk copyright is $35. I'm glad I don't have to send in a big heavy paper copy, like before we had this option. That's $50--plus the mailing of that thing! But just like Katie explains--much better than I could here--this will protect you should someone lift your eBook and begin selling it as their own. You only need to notify the copyrights office and they will put a written notice of infringement on it and you shouldn't have to spend a dime on lawyer fees. Katie has a very good couple of posts on this and you might want to check them all out.


And, I'm still somewhat distracted. Mainly because I want to finish the edits on Vampire's Trill, and get on with writing the third book. After that one, I'm taking a little break. I'll be hoping that three books might begin pulling in more notice on the book. I hope. Besides, promoting three books will become very difficult, if I can't quit my day job.


Just for fun, I caught the revelation on the plot of the Dark Shadows movie at Suburban Vampire, and if you are looking forward to this movie you might want to see how they are going to put the story together. Sounds good to me.


We didn't go shopping today--both of us just a bit tired from our week, so we may just go tomorrow. No big hurry. We can't move back in until everything is finished. Next week the windows will go in and the cabinets have to have a clear coat put on, plus the hardware. We still don't know what will happen with the stove, but we will have to get it replaced. The fumes on this one was so bad, it left black on everything--you could definitely see it on the walls when we removed the clock and other things hanging. It's a definite health hazard. I don't know why we didn't tell the appliance store to take it back when it wasn't working right to begin with. We're hoping for an electric oven. Since you can't get one without an electric ignition, anyway, it doesn't matter if you have gas or electric. And propane is so dirty, we're pretty much fed up with using it for our stove. But they'd have to run a different line up and I don't know if they'll go to that expense or not. I don't know what electricians get now, but if a painter got $45/hour, it's gotta be pretty high for an electrician now. (I'm sure in the wrong business!)


Well, those are my thoughts for the day that I thought I'd share with you on the day the world is supposed to end. I'm not even going to go there.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Kitchen Coming Close to End

Well, this week the nice ceiling fan/light went in. It looked great. If I were able to put up a picture I would. But the comparison to what had been there, well--there is no comparison. The thing made of some sort of bamboo, a throw back to the 60's, was mostly a dust collector that sort of hung over the ugly globe that gave off very little light. I was happy to see the goofy thing sitting over a pot in the yard. Good riddance. My husband called it a yard decoration.

The next day I found a bit more added. The floorboards went in. Jerry--the retired painter who said he used to make $45/hour doing this (and he would have earned it by what he's done just in our kitchen)--had done all the painting, and he caulked along the edges of everything. Beautiful work.

Yesterday the other thing that went in was the cupboard/vent fan/light over the stove. You could do brain surgery with all the available light in this room. The vent wasn't even our idea, and we love it. Planning out where we'll put all our stuff once we can move back in.

Jerry and Dennis had talked about the ugly floor heat vent. It had been black, but was all roughed up and just ugly. So, Jerry had mentioned how a person could take three different colors of spray paint and make it blend in with the floor. Well, I came home and saw he'd done exactly that and boy, you don't even notice its there!

Dennis said he had asked about me being a writer, and--my husband the salesman--told him as much as he could about it, and Jerry wrote down the publisher's site and said he'd have one of his kids go on line for him. I'll probably get a couple of sales out of this. Who knows.

Next week final touches and somehow, some way we'll get a new stove. But the window has to be put in--that may go in tomorrow. It's actually two, and they go up over the sink. And next week they have to finish the cupboards. I hope they'll put on the hardware, but if they don't, I'll do it. But they might just go ahead and do this for us.

We'll be going to Bed, Bath and Beyond this weekend to get some ideas for some additions and curtains that we have to get.

That's all from me for now.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Judgement Day is Here?

I first saw this on facebook about two weeks ago. Tonight on WGN radio they were talking about it. Wish I hadn't missed out. But my husband had been listening and told me that the last time it was thought that this was about to happen was in '94. I recall it when the comet Kohotek (spelling is probably way off), when everyone was saying this was going to happen. People were on their roofs waiting. I'm not kidding!

There is no date in the Bible that says that on May 21, 2011 the world is going to end. I guarantee it.

However, I must say from the way things have been going, you'd almost believe that we are heading in that direction. I need not point at the headlines do I?

With that being said I am not going to sit on the fence with this, my friends. I'm not a believer. And if I'm to go to "hell" then so be it. My sister--the oldest--always said the the sinners were more fun anyway. Yeah, my sister cracked me up with her one-liners.

So, I'll be waiting sometime after the 21st to hear about all the stupid people have racked up thousands of dollars on their credit cards and bemoan the fact they thought the world was going to end, and just thought they would have a big old party up until then.

What are you doing on the 21st?

Monday, May 16, 2011

Busy Day & Advice from Kate Elliott (you don't want to miss)


I was an angel today. As much as I wasn't in the mood for it, I hemmed my husband's jeans--which takes me about 45 min. now because I do it so often I know what I'm doing. I then had some house cleaning to do while he went off and mowed the park and did some other things he does out there.





My bathroom was scum on scum after two days of unusual heat and the toilet sweated. YUCK! I don't know about you ladies, but the silly wet pads that they've come out with are worthless! All it really ever does is pushes the dirt and crap around. That's not cleaning the floor at all. My husband bought me this great mop at the hardware store made by Rubbermaid. Now that was a mop! I don't mind filling a bucket and swishing it around the place at all. There's an old saying that I actually adhere to: If it ain't broken, don't try and fix it.




I mopped the bathroom floor first and I was certain it was clean after finding that the other stupid worthless wet pad left everything. Then, on to my new kitchen floor to get up at least some of the heavier spots. I wasn't prepared to do the whole floor as yet. I went on and got some dirty spots by the front door, and did some vacuuming, and that was all the time I could devote to the house. I had several things to take care of on the blogs today and get back to my publisher for an interview. But before I did that, I went and cut myself some lovely lilacs for the house.






I'm currently reading through my second book and that's going fine. But today I barely got to that because of everything I had to take care of today. So, feeling somewhat distracted I went to my favorites center and went to Kate Elliott's web site. You'll want to go to to the top and hit on "The writing Life". If you are a writer, beginner especially, or one who is in need of some sort of strategies on how to get back on track, you'll want to visit Kate's site. I've been there a couple of times reading her essays on writing, and find that she understands what it takes.





If you get distracted, like I do (I've got ADD), her essay on "Strategies for Writing" is one you might want to check out.And if you are writing any sort of fantasy, you'll need to read her piece called "The Fully Realized World" especially if your novel takes place in centuries past. There are things you might not have considered, and she makes a case for why you need to take certain things into consideration before you make a blunder.

And her piece on "Advice for SFF (first time) Novelists" shouldn't be missed.



I've yet to read anything by her, but my pal, Sumiko, has recommended her books, and I must take her up on these. They sound wonderful.

My Weekend & Updates on the Kitchen




We bought a new coffee maker. News splash, right? Well, when your coffee maker goes out that's pretty much a done deal. The morning it went out was a work day. My resourceful husband went upstairs and dug out the coffee maker we use when we go camping. Thank goodness we still had that. So, we had what we like to refer to as "Chester Good" coffee for about 3 mornings. (Unless you watched "Marshall Dillon", you wouldn't know the joke, so I won't go into it here.)



We had a flier from Kohls, and they had a Black & Decker 12 cup coffee maker on sale for $19.99. That's a good price. I also saw some sandals that I wanted, and talked my dear husband into going there. He had to activate our card (my suggestion because of the savings you can get through it). We needed to go to Walmart too, so we went there first and checked the price of the same damned coffee maker. Here is where you have to realize you don't save so much on things at Wally World. The same coffee maker at Walmart was nearly $25!



Okay, on to Kohl's we go. I had brought our flier, I'm not sure why, but I did. We were having a very easy day of finding everything we needed. Yes, even in Walmart! So, we found the coffee maker, they had plenty of them, at the sale price and my shoes--found the very ones I wanted in my size!!! We get up to the cash register and the woman asked what our discount was today when Dennis handed her his card. We said we didn't know. So she got out these scratch off cards to get our extra discount. I got 15% off the purchase. But wait. She explained that the flier would have had some sort of card you peel off, we said we had it and so I ran out in the cold wind and brought it back. There wasn't any peel off saving card on it. So, because she was nice (and probably a manager), she gave us 30% discount on everything. I basically got my shoes for free!



This morning we had coffee from our new coffee maker. It's black. A nice contrast against the white painted walls that are now finished. I measured the cupboards and cabinets and drawers. While at Walmart Sunday we bought a couple of things for the sink, a new wash basin, sink liners, and a new dish drainer--all in a sort of tan/gold color. Nice to have new stuff. We were looking at the liners they have for cabinets. There's a big improvement on these things, and I think I've picked out some, and will buy in next few weeks. Not now, because they are still working on this. The cabinets need to be finished with clear varnish, and some hardware yet, and the floorboards to be put in, and another cabinet with a vent/fan over the stove and a new ceiling fan/light. We might be able to move back in at the end of the month, we're guessing at the rate everything is going.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Review for Angelology by Danielle Trussoni



When I first heard of Angelology, I was throughly intrigued. I twas something that interested me for a while and oddly, how it came up at a time when I had been working Nephilim into a second book of my own. So, definitely, I needed to check this book out.


I went to the Angelology web site and beleive me, if you have not gone there as yet, you'll want to. This is a pretty cool website. You'll see a desk with various things up on it, music in the background, and you move your cursor over the various things on the desk you'll see a read out, and you can click on them and it takes you to whatever it might be. J.K. Rowlings has a webe site just like this. I think it's very cool. You'll be able to read a teaser portion of a chapter there and all sorts of good stuff on Angelology. You know that there were such a group of people. There may still be. After reading this book I want to say there might be such a group and even Nephilim out there. Who's to say there isn't?


Angelology weaves several stories from different characters, and from different times. There is even a narrative that Trussoni wrote about a monk's journey into the Devil's Throat that was engrossing. But mainly we go from modern times to back to the 1940's and delve into the four main characters, Celestine, Verlain, Evageline, and Gabriella. We learn eventually how it all comes together in the modern era. You are pulled along with each individual's story, the need to know why one character acted in such a way, and another another way, and what the truth is behind it all.


Danielle Trussoni has done her job as a writer to keep you turning the pages and suspending our belief systems as she blends historical fact with fiction. The story revolves around several letters written between Abigail Rockefeller and the late mother supeorior of Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adorration, giving Sister Evangeline a peice of the puzzle, and Verlain's piece of the puzzle, which, when put together leaves intricate clues as to the whereabouts of something that was dismantled and that the Nephilim want desperately and will stop at nothing--even murder and descruction of institutions--to get it.


She blends bibilcal lore, the fall of the Rebel Angels, and the Book of Enock along with the myth of Orpheus in such a way it is seamless and beleivable.


This is well worth the read. You have the basic story of good vs. evil. YOu have fallen angels, and you have their off spring, the Nephilim--who are quite evil and might surprise you how imbedded they are in society.


For me this book is as well told, and very historically accurate (and her research was the key to making this story feel so real), as The Historian by Elizabeth Kostava, which is one of my all-time favorites. It had the same texture and feel to it for this reader. I read The Historian for the pure pleasure of the writing and the story. Angelology will be revisited as well, and has become one of my top-notch novels.


I'm calling this one Top Shelf.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

The Tornado of Yesterday

This was posted at the DeKalb Chronicle facebook page by Rona Hardt. It was seen south of Rout 3o, west of Waterman.

Our house is approximately 1 mile southwest of Waterman, and Rt 30 runs through the town. Dennis told me that when he'd gotten into his truck yesterday to come and pick me up at about 1:45 p.m. all had gone quiet. Not even the birds were singing. It was dead calm. I'm figuring that the tornado was about to make its appearance where this woman lived and bravely took a snap of it over the field.

In some cases we had hail, 2-3" of rain that fell within a half hour. In a town in northern DeKalb county, they had 5", in one area. Nothing in another.

I read no reports of any injuries. Mostly fields, which were just planted, were ruined, and are still under water.

So, this is the day after story, folks. I didn't know there had been a touch-down of a tornado. A little digging around got me this photo. Pretty amazing, and really scary.

Tornado Warning





Earlier during the day I had been watching the clouds ominously forming these possible tails in the sky. sort of like this picture.




On my second to last run, I was watching and noticing how dark clouds had gathered to the west and south, and to the north some bubbling topped ones forming. Another driver said over the bus radio how colorful the clouds were. I didn't think that was a good sign.





Once back at the student center—which is our hub—I was compelled to put everything away in my bag, so that I could get off the bus when my shift was done without any hassles. I normally do this, but I also turned my coat to the rain jacket side (reversable coat), because I knew for sure we would be getting rain before I was done.




I was beginning my very last run. I had three people on board. I made my way out of the student center, which was busy because people were moving out of the dorms nearby. I turn out onto Lucinda when I started hearing radio transmissions—it was all fuzzy and I couldn't make heads or tails of it. I turn the radio up.




I was at the corner of Lucinda and Normal. I turn right onto Normal Rd. But that's when I heard a transmission come over. I hear the supervisor, Matt (Mobil 2), say to another driver to “evacuate your bus and go inside” wherever she was. In the background during the radio transmissions I could hear the tornado siren going off . I didn't hear any near me, but that made no difference. I had pulled my bus over to the side and put it in park.




When there was a pause in the radio traffic I called him. “Mobil 2, I just left the student center.”



Where are you at?”




I'm on Lucinda at the corner.”




"Evacuate your bus, and turn around and get the bus back to the student center. I got up and turned to the 3 people on my bus, and told them to evacuate the bus and head into the student center to the lower levels. They all got off and headed in.




I was right beside, but I couldn't park it in the road. So, I had to make a left turn and go around a block and come back into the turn around at the student center. Matt helped me park it, and told me to go inside. I gathered all my things, which was easy, thanks to my preperation. I'd already turned my coat to the rain side, and put it on before I returned to the student center.





I now can hear the sirens as I get off the bus. When I enter the student center, which is a 16 floor complex, a repeated message over the intercom kept announcing to go to the lower levels of the building and to stay away from glass and windows. So, I know my way around and go downstairs. I find some of the custodians—a couple of them I know—and I stand around with them and talk about what's going on. I learn that some place to the north there was flash flooding from the river.





Since I haven't seen where the other drivers went I knew I had better to go and find them. I finally locate them in a small room watching the radar on a large screen TV. I didn't even know this was here. They're all seated around the room. I've probably missed out on the various stories of what everyone else had been doing and where they were at the time of the announcement. I know that some people had to stop wherever they were on campus and evacuate and go into other buildings.




At this point, I'm not sure if there had been a tornado touch down. Only that a funnel cloud had been seen by someone somewhere. I could see the dark red sploch on the screen we were watching, and it was close to DeKalb. It was a good call to get us all off the buses, and I felt that this was handled very well by all of the supervisors.





Eventually, we're told that whoever wants to go back can follow Mobil 2 to the Freedom Mobile. Which we do. We're about to take off when he gets a call about another storm coming through. But we are offered a ride back to base, anyway in the boss' car.




Once back to base I wait for Dennis, not sure if he knows we've been under a tornado warning. I'm waiting in the garage of base where they work on the buses along with a few mechanics, and two other people who work in the office. I'd guaged the timing pretty good, because I see the black F150 coming down the street out front, and I said “Here comes my knight in shining armor!”



I tell Dennis what was happening. He tells me that he'd been listening to the Cubs on WGN and they didn't say anything about any tornado warnings. That surprised me.



Before he picked me up, he'd gone and got gas and went to our bank, and now we had to make a loan payment at another bank and get a pizza. Which we do. While he runs and gets the take and bake pizza, I snack on one of the cookies he brought in a napkin. "They had hot dogs today, at the bank for customer appreciation day," he told me.



At this point it's raining, but not hard. People at this end of town had heard about the warning, but pretty much people were out and about as if nothing was going on.



We begin our way back home. Now it begins to really rain. We get behind traffic, two buses going to some sporting event. Eventually they turn. We get past the toll way entrance, which really bogs down traffic, and head out into the country. Now the rain is coming down so fast the windshield wippers can't keep up. And my husband is eating his cookie saying how he remembered it raining this bad somewhere in Nebraska--only worse. I remember that trip.



We finally make it down our quiet road. There's a lot of standing rain in the fields. "There were farmers in the fields when I left," Dennis reports.



"Well, they're gone now."



The rain lets up the further south we get and finally home, it's raining lightly.



What a way to end the semester. I didn't have to drive my last run, spent it in the basement of the student center.










'

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Home Sick

I suppose that being sick has two sides to it. For one, you get to stay home (yeay), but for another you feel like crap and hardly feel well enough to do very much of anything. I mean, a whole day is wasted. You aren't making money because you're home and you feel so cruddy, you can't do much of anything but lay around.




This cold is brought to us by supervisor of park who had been working in here all last week, didn't say he was sick and yet he was hacking all over the place. Got Dennis sick first, and me next. I worked sick yesterday. Just couldn't do it today I felt so bad. But also, I don't want to spread my germs and at least our work place has the wisdom to say "if you are sick, just stay home" When we had the bird flu (or whatever it had morphed into) come through the place about one or two years ago, they began that policy. You can't run a bus company (where people are needed to drive buses), if everyone is sick.




So, through the night I kept waking up. Each time I did for some reason I had in my head the newly wedded royals, the wedding, and what they might be up to now adays. I wondered what they had for breakfast. Silly me. Must be the cold doing things to my brain. But whatever. I mean I could be thinking of far dumber things, couldn't I? Well, aside from the fact I wish I'd invested in an alpaca farm in my 40's, but hey. Who knew?


So, I'm going to try and do something while I can hold my head up for the time being.



I'll announce the winner of the book give-away when I know it, which should be some time today, since the contest was over last night. I thank everyone who did come by and I enjoyed your comments. . . . A-a-a-choo!



Monday, May 9, 2011

Patricia's Vampire Notes: Lorelei Bell - Guest Blog and Contest

Patricia's Vampire Notes: Lorelei Bell - Guest Blog and Contest

Another Guest Blog & Contest!



Hello to all my friends, which includes my favorite stalkers and lurkers, of course!




Come on by to Patricia's Vampire Notes today and you will have a chance to win either an eBook, or a soft-bound copy. Your choice, there will be two winners—one will win the eBook and another person will win the softbound book, so if you don't care which, say you'd like either one in your comments, we will just pick winners, and I'll decide which one you'll get.





When you get done with that, I'd like you to swing by and take a look at what I've been working on: VAMPIRE ASCENDING~The Book. This is my book's blog. I had begun it when the book first came out and couldn't figure out how to promote it. Some of you don't know about it, and maybe that's my fault, mainly because I just got too busy to promote it.



But I'm prepping it now for a summer event. What's the event? I'm not ready to tell you, since summer is not quite here yet. And it has something to do with the next book's release, and I'm trying to tie it in with my birthday. This will very much depend upon followers who join, so if you have not joined yet, go there now. I am going to have a contest at some point this summer. YOU MUST BE A FOLLOWER TO WIN!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY!




I'm posting this in memory of both my own mother, who passed away when I was quite young, and Dennis' mother who passed away last September.


Flowers are always a nice gesture to give to Mom, and daffodils are very pretty, spring flowers, so here you go.


I am not a mother, and yet a whole lot of people thought I would make a great one. Probably because I could teach my children so much about life, and the things around them, and I'd sure as heck teach my daughter how to cook, sew, and all the things they need to know about . . . but I would also instill this into my son.

But you know, it's the spirit of motherhood that keeps me afloat. I love to grow things, I love to create things, and thus, the spirit of the goddess is what holds me together and keeps me taking the next step in my life, wherever it leads me.



If you are reading this today do take a moment out of your busy schedule and look around you, find a silent spot in your backyard, or in a park, listen to the birds, the wind through the trees, consider the flowers in blossom and what they are: Mothers, as they create more of their own kind through pollination and reseeding. Enjoy nature and you will be rewarded.

Violets are up and they are my favorite posy that grow in the ground. I recall picking a hand full of them and taking them to my own mother in the spring. Next to that is the lilac. You may see the pattern here, I like violet and lilac in color, too. My office is painted lilac and violet. I painted it all myself--and I have 10 ft ceilings--I think I had tennis elbow for months after.

Creativity is something I think all women have, whether they think so or not. I remember crocheting, before I got really serious into my writing, and I spent hours making anything from doilies to afghans. I made crafts too--loved doing that--and sold them in a couple of stores before the popularity of that sort of died, and the shops closed up. But I think I went back to writing before the craft vogue faded. I missed writing.

I once wrote--after returning from a long hiatus from writing--that I knew of nothing that fed my inner creative genius as writing, nothing that satisfied me as much, or gave me the thrill of accomplishment. And it wasn't just the act of writing, but if I don't have a pen and paper in hand, or sitting at my computer hammering something out or reading it through and tweaking it, I'd look quite odd to someone who knows me well (my husband). I like all the plotting, the scenes that go on in my head--yes, the voices!--and the editing. I realized at some point that the muse in me was very strong and active and if I came to a dead end in a story, I just patiently wait for her to pick it up and tell me what to do next. Sometimes we disagreed and we'd have to wait and see what more we could do with the scene. And then there is the character taking things over as well. That's spooky, but I've grown used to it.

So, as I end this, work on my second book Vampire's Trill, is coming along. And I'm still hoping to get word out about the first one Vampire Ascending. Promotions are always a tough thing to do, and it is constant. Thus, I'll announce it here: I'm appearing on Patricia's Vampire Notes TOMORROW! And as I've posted, there will be a give away, and I hope that any of you who have not had a chance to grab a copy who might want to win one, to stay tuned, I will post the link--and hope it works!!!










Friday, May 6, 2011

Updates on Kitchen and other vitals



My updates have been around the kitchen lately. And I know, I know you guys want pictures. Unless someone comes in here with a digital camera to take some, I'm afraid I'm unable to provide them.



Suffice to say, the walls were painted--lucky us--by a retired professional painter. Jerry intimated to my husband he retired from painting making $45/hour, to go down to $9/hour working for the forest preserve--paining. Go figure.



Details were worked on, but we're both a bit dismayed at the way that this was approached. Basically bass-ackwards. The window over the kitchen sink--which you may recall was installed over a week ago--is yet to be replaced. I thought--we both thought--this would be the first thing he would do. Nope. How they will get around the sink and counter to replace the window, I don't know unless they do it from outside. But they have to remove the caulk we put in to keep out the cold air and Asian beetles years ago.



Also, I gave my husband the go-ahead to tell his supervisor, Buck (who is supervising this job), to refer to me when he reminds him of what needs to be done. "Lorelei just wanted to make sure you were going to do this-or-that." I told him I didn't mind playing the "bad cop" here, since he has to work under the man. No one who has met me would call me a battle ax, but in a way I'm allowing the idea to be subliminal that I'm the one demanding all this be done, all the details worked on etc. Since Buck would know that I was the one who sent the letter to the forest preserve superintendent about having this job underway since it was slated to happen this year--I had seen it in their minutes from their meetings.



I knew that if I had not sent that letter to the superintendent all the work on the barn would go on around us and Dennis was not going to make waves. So, I did. I got sick of looking at a filthy carpet on the kitchen, dealing with the bad plumbing, and almost no drawers, and the--gross--conditions underneath the sink where mice have, well, invaded. We had not eaten in the kitchen in several years because of the conditions. Mind you, I clean the best I can, but it comes to a point when whatever you do is not going to make it "clean".



So, the kitchen now has a bright new floor, counter tops, cabinets, and a fresh coat of paint on the walls. I've reminded them--through Dennis--that new doors and outdoor steps were also to be replaced as well, once this project is done. Dennis bought me a new mop and a replacement mop head so I can get up the fine dust that came from painter sanding down the walls after the mud he applied to bad areas had dried. The man did a great job!



The people who are renovating the barn--why they are doing this we have no idea--will be doing the siding and a couple of other things on the outside. The wetlands project must have really brought in a good deal of cash for them to have to spend like this. I'm just happy it's being done.



Meanwhile spring is blossoming and blooming its head off here. The magnolia trees, tulips, daffodils and other things are spectacular. My husband has spotted the rose breasted gross beak and then he called me to the kitchen where he had spotted something he didn't know what it was. He told me, "It has a bright red head, a black back and and white belly."



"That's probably a red-headed woodpecker. And sure enough, my many years of birdwatching was right-on. We spied it on the trees and I took the binoculars, although I knew without them that's exactly what it was.



I will be appearing on Patricia's Vampire Notes this coming Monday. I will announce it again. Yes there will be a give away. Any of my lurkers and stalkers are most welcome to jog over on Monday. I will give the link here that day, so DON'T MISS IT!


Thursday, May 5, 2011

Sumiko's Reads ~ Desappearing Act




Hi! You may be wondering where I disappeared to post "Fever" - I have been reading - but mostly I have been re-reading A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin. I started the re-read in anticipation of HBO's
series based on the book and then when the publication date for A Dance With Dragons was announced I wanted to reread to be up-to-speed and ready to dive into ADWD as soon as it comes out.

I have to say that so far I am very pleased with the TV adaptation. This is based purely on the first episode. (Which, by the way, covers to only about page 71 in the hardcover edition of the book.) They are
planning on 10 episodes for the first book and they've just been renewed for another 10 episodes which, I believe, is going to cover the next book in the Song of Ice and Fire. (The Song of Ice and Fire is the name of the series of books - A Game of Thrones is only the first book in the series.) It is visually pleasing and well-cast and just fun to watch.

If you have HBO - I totally recommend it and if you don't have HBO definitely watch the DVDs or Bluray when they come out. (Probably not until just before the premiere of season 2!)

And if you haven't read the books: give them a try. They hooked me in with the first chapter. (There is a prologue and then a chapter.) Some haven't been hooked until approximately the chapter where the
pilot ended. These books are epic in scope - involving many characters and the characters are interesting and I have found that characters that at first I had very little time for became more interesting as time progressed. (Although two of my original favorites are still my favorites.)

One of the benefits of the media campaign for the show is that there are some good interviews with George R.R. Martin and Jame Poniewozick of Time Magazine has posted a 4-parter that is well worth reading. You can find links to each part at the link below:

http://tunedin.blogs.time.com/tag/game-of-thrones/

The books are definitely worth a try: Martin doesn't make his world easy or pretty: evil isn't always obvious. He tells the story from a multiplicity of points of view so you get to know the "P.O.V." characters. I think this forces you to see the action from different sides so that you can't just dismiss any one side as good or evil.

And bonus: if you start reading now - you know you'll have five very long books to look forward to.


Tuesday, May 3, 2011

The "hot" Review of Vampire Ascending









In case you didn't know, Shelly (Michelle Bradford-Arkon) made a post/review on my book Vampire Ascending at her blog Shelly's Blog.




I'm not sure how many times the word hot was used, but it was a number of them, referring to the men, of course, in my novel. I felt that she really hammered home the point about the men in Sabrina's life being hot for her, and she sort of dazed by all the attention. Plus all the biting going on here.




I knew, going into the writing of this book that most series gives the lead gal just one guy to go after, or he to go after her. Whatever. I'm a glutton. Sorry. I figure there's plenty of hot men out there, why should a woman choose just one?--well, choose one for a night and move on. (okay, I've just bit my tongue here)




Out of the several reviews I've had, Shelly's was the best. And it's not because she gave me ten stars--no, I did not bribe her, but I did think about it. Ha! But she just made me chuckle with her explanations and, of course, all the hot guys in the book thing.




Shelly, I am sorry that I've made it so that you need the next book, like, yesterday. (Not really, but I'm being polite.) I'm sorry that the story was left at a cliffhanger, but I'm related by birth to a Satan and Lilith pairing. I do promise to bring my next book to a satisfying close, tying up all loose ends so that you don't have to wonder, or need to buy that next book.




I'm lying through my teeth, of course.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Night time Thoughts



Okay, I know what you're thinking. I don't usually post twice in one day--like they say that lightning doesn't hit the same place twice. Riiiight. But dang it I did have a wonderful day. My back feels about 50% better. I still have to watch twisting and bending. But aside from that one physical aspect, I had a free day to do what I want.


I marveled at the new floor and cabinets in the kitchen, knowing that in two weeks they should be done with it all. Plans for the colors and what we'll do with it filling my spare moments as I make a list of things we'll need.


Today, I also won an ebook from my visit yesterday at Marissa Farrar's Official Author's Page, The House On Blackstone Moor by another (new) friend, Carole Gill. I will not tell you how long it took me to figure out how to get this book downloaded. And I'm thinking I didn't even need to do the Adobe down load at all, once I went back and did a simple down load to an RTF format. Sheesh!

Anyway I thank both Carole Gill and Marissa Farrar. Marissa has added a Friday interview with authors on her blog, and she has kindly invited me to be on it in June. So, whoo-hoo!


I've also worked further into my second book, did some research on King Solomon, and a magic ring he was supposed to have that helped him command demons, which relate to some degree with the second book's details, which lead me to some other interesting things that were just as interesting as my main interest. I love Wikipedia.


Then, tonight I began penning a scene down for the third book. It's actually the climax scene, merely because it was just there, even though I am no where near this scene in the book's actual writing progress. I'm only half way done! You see, I am a "panster", Carole! I can't help it. I think it's one of those obsessive things. Outlining doesn't work for me merely because the scenes come to me and I write them, sometimes out of sequence. My only basic structure might be a plot-planning template to keep me on track, and then possibly writing short descriptions down on note cards and placing them in order of where I want them. If that's outlining I'm a monkey's aunt. But it does keep me from deviating too much and hold me on track toward where I want to go with the book. And if it changes mid stream, no big deal. I love when my characters decide they are not what I expected them to be. Like Jett of the third book turns into a prince instead of a necromancer. I'll admit the necromancer idea wasn't bad, but Jett decided he was Drakulya's son. Go figure. And Sabrina is attracted to him, where as, in the beginning I didn't want her to be. That girl is hard to figure! But then, the were-creature sort of has her dancing in circles, so I can't blame her much.


And finally, but not least, Michelle Bradford-Arkon tells me that she will be posting a review on my book, Vampire Ascending, at her blog tomorrow. I will place a link for you all to take a peek.



Tomorrow I'll be singing the phrases "Ding-dong, the witch is dead!" because the most horrible man in this century, Osama bin Ladin, was killed by American forces. Good riddance!


I see by my clock that it is getting late and I do have to get up in the morning and go to work "sigh", but I will have this day in my mind, remembering all the things I accomplished and things that happened and all the people who happened by today.







To All My Friends, Stalkers & Lurkers: May Updates

Good morning, lurkers, stalkers and friends!


I'm home today. Sort of fortunate I am, since I've done something to my back and I'm in pain. But I'm doing the ice/heat/ice/heat/ice thing. I have scoliosis, and since I don't have health care I can't go to a chiropractor--which is what I would do if I could.

But enough about that.

I'm happy to have the day off. I've gone and visited some of you folks, and looks as though I've won an ebook. I just hope I can down load it. I'd like to read something by Carole Gill. I will give up-date on this as things happen.

Also, I will be posting something from our friend, Sumiko, this week. Last week just dished out more than I could handle, and I did not have the luxury of time to do much on my posts, so this one will be delayed, but will be coming up.

Speaking of give aways, I'm about to have another one. Yes. If any of you have been lurking to see if I'd have another give away for Vampire Ascending, you might just want to take advantage of this one, since I'm not sure when I'll next have another one. I'm just saying.

So, please stay tuned, lurk, or whatever you do to keep posted on when and where I'll be this next week. I love stalkers, so come on out and stalk me!!!

Since I'm in a chatty mood, I've changed my header over on my Vampire Writer's Retreat, I think it's great looking.

I'm also, as some of you know, working on the second book to be sent off to my wonderful publisher, and I'm working on the third book, as time allows, here and there . If I had more time, I'd be able to work on both at the same time, but sort of hard to write while driving a transit bus. I just can't multi-task that!


I'm also working on little titillations for the second book with Yolanda, editor at Copperhill Media, who does fine work on our manuscripts as well as certain blog posts I submit to her for frogenyozert.com. I've sent her something for this week and I'll put the latest link here for any of you lurkers and stalkers, as well as my regulars who actually leave me nice little comments. You all know who you are!

I've got ice on my back, but need to change to heat. I'm not sure how long to do this, I'll wait until the bottom of the hour, I guess.

Also, I'm reading Angelology. I've gotta say, my fellow readers/writers, this is one book I do recommend, if only for the absolute mastery of her telling this tale. I will put together a review once I've finished it.



So, enjoy your second day of May, and stop by often, I love stalkers, lurkers and all my friends out there.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

I Love Quiet Sundays


Quiet as a graveyard. . .
We did go into Walmart to grab a bunch of those "stock-up" things. Also made list as we perused the kitchen areas, seeing what they had. Going to go with almond/tan/brown to sort of go with the colors of the floor and the counter top. Work comes to stand still on the weekends. Don't even know if anything will be done on Monday. Very frustrating waiting for things to get completed.



Other than that, over on my Vampire Writer's Retreat, if you recall I went with this picture for the header because I asked a bunch of you to give me your preferences back a few months ago.



Well, I went looking over on photobucket and found something that really looks great. I also decided to give a eensy-weensy titillation for the second book there. Check it out HERE.


I've picked up a couple more followers over on my Vampire's Literature on Writer's Digest blog.

Last night I had a few lines of dialogue in my head for the THIRD book, and had to go ahead and write that into my notes on that. I've been considering the title. I've changed it twice, now. I went from the working title: Necromancer's Dream--because it was going to be about a Necromancer, but then the story just changed. Or rather the characters changed their minds. And I had one surprise character just deciding to drop in. Dracula just wouldn't stay away. So, yes, the historical Dracula is a main character in my third book, and he just happens to be a vampire. How he manages this I'll not reveal, since his head was severed in battle.




So, I changed the title to Beyond the Veil, which worked, but I decided to make it doubly dark I went and changed it to Beyond the Black Veil. I have my reasons. Aside from it being interesting, it has a deeper vampiric meaning.

Well, I think I'd better go and do a little work on the second book, now. Hope your Sunday on this first day of May is quiet and pleasant, too.