At the beginning of this month, when I went to gym, I noted something a tad different -- it was busier.  My guess was because of all the New Year's resolutions that had been uttered the weeks prior to January 1, 2012.  Some of the new faces were there simply to get in shape, maybe tone and do a little weight training.  Others were there to lose weight and feel better about who they are -- it is to those that I give the following words of encouragement, as I myself was once a very large woman.

I know what it feels like to walk in the gym and not have that perfect model body (not that I have one now mind you).  The embarrassment, the feeling of inadequacy, the stares from those who have those perfect bodies, all those horrible feelings that are added to the already crappy pile of sh** you place on yourself.  What I want you to know is this:  I do look at you when I see you working hard on the treadmill, or the bike, or jogging, or ... Well you get the picture.  But I'm not thinking what you think I'm thinking -- I'm not thinking "how could someone let themselves get like that" (I know all too well how easy it is) or "that's disgusting".  No, I'm not thinking that at all, what I'm thinking is "good for you", "keep it up", "don't let the skinnies get to you" and I'm trying to get up enough courage to approach you, to give you a high five and encourage you to keep going -- keep going! You've already taken the hardest step. You go guys and gals!!!!

Have a great day




I've heard it said, on numerous occasions, that one of the hardest things, for some authors to do, is pick a title for their masterpiece.  Up until now, I found that interesting, because for me, the titles were always the next thing that popped into my head after the first paragraph did.  However, the bunch that took the stage this time are stubborn.  Yes, another book is on the horizon and the story is being told, but my characters have yet to reveal the title and honestly, it's driving me crazy. Arg!!! (I think they're rebelling).

As their words flow across the pages, the fact that their story doesn't have a name is never far from the forefront of my mind. Which, of course, means, I'm constantly shushing them when my brain decides to change direction and runs through a plethora of possible titles.  In essence... this bunch has me struggling.  Hmm, maybe I'll push them to the back of the line and see who's next.  I'm allowed to do that, after all, I'm the author.

Have a great day.
The weekend went well and Soul Control is now in the hands of the judges at Amazon. Fingers crossed that my *##@@ 300 word hook sends it the second round and if not... well, we won't think about it.

For the past couple of months I've been working on Soul Control and it is now fully and utterly complete.  I've read over and over, and I don't think I can tweak it anymore.  Now what do I do? 

Well, I'm simply going to give my brain a rest, even though I'm certain others are already sneaking in the back door and will soon step on stage, wanting their stories written -- until then, I'm going to enjoy the silence, because it will probably only last a day, if I'm lucky.

Have a great day.
Well, I'm a bit nervous for Sunday night.  Why?  Because I'm going to enter Saydi and Nathanael in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Contest. Yes, I believe they're story is that good.

Because it is not a contracted work nor a published work yet, I am eligible to submit it and am very excited/nervous.  So guess what I'll be doing all weekend.  Yes, the dreaded of all things... a 300 word hook, which of course runs along the same as a (gasp! Choke!)... query.

Wish me luck. Oh! By the way, the title of Nathanael and Saydi's story -- Soul Control.

Have a great day and weekend. 
This morning we woke up to minus 26 degrees Celsius and it's been like that for the last few days here in the great white north.  Yesterday morning was even worse, we woke up to minus 33 degrees Celsius and with the wind chill, it was minus 41... Yes you heard right and the day before that it was a balmy minus 28 with a wind chill that put us at minus 30 something.  Brrr! These kind of days make me wonder why I live here.  However, they also help me realize how blessed we are.

Why do I bring this up?  Because it’s on these days that the homeless sit heavy on my mind.  Have you ever noticed during the warm days their out and about, doing their daily routines?  Such as finding bottles to make enough cash for a meal, maybe scoping out a certain area they want to claim for a nights rest, they're there in plain sight -- but it's on these extremely cold days that those same people become invisible.

They hide from the cold, trying to find a place to stay out of the wind and when it's this cold, it's almost impossible to scour the back alleys to find those ever elusive bottles they so desperately need.  Not only that, let's face it, we all hunker down inside, not wandering to far from the comfort of our warm buildings, complaining how cold it is and whining to management to turn the heat up, so we don't have wear that sweater that's draped over the back of our chair.

On these days, the homeless' fight for survival, is no longer to get through the next twenty four hours, it's trying to get through the next minute, hoping a hot meal might be on the horizon or better yet, that they make it through the night. The reason they're there is not for me to question nor judge, everyone's story is different and it would do some of us good to remember that 60% of middle class families (yes people you know) are one paycheque away from homelessness themselves.

We are blessed with our ability to be able to give a toque, mitts, scarf or maybe, something as simple as putting those empties out in a back alley instead of taking them to the bottle depot.

Have a great day. 
It is a new year and most have made resolutions, whether they're successful or not, remains to be seen.  Did I make a resolution?  No, but I did make myself a promise to change something that I noted about myself (yes another discovery, geez!).  What I noted since writing, is I found myself somewhat shy.  Actually, it felt like I was in highschool again, a place where I was enormously shy.

When did I discover this?  Well, it took a small thing to enlighten me to such a huge problem -- my eyes would constantly stay on the ground, in a room of strangers and I would only engage them if they approached me or if I had no choice, such as a clerk at a store.  Then upon further investigation, it came to light that even at my book signings, I simply smiled, but would never approach someone unless they took an interest.  Not a good place to be when you're an author.

Truly, I don't know where it came from, because after highschool I conquered that stigmatism and became quite outgoing (no, not annoying outgoing).  So, whatever triggered my old ways I'll  never know.  All I know is...I'm going to change it with one eye contact and one smile at a time.

Have a great day.
Happy Monday everyone!  I only say that because, if I speak it, it will come true... Right?  

Well, regardless of what today brings, I'm forever thankful for this past weekend.  I was in Jasper and it couldn't have been more beautiful.  As we strolled along main street, checking out what each and every store had to offer, a light snow fell, there was no wind and it was warm -- it truly stepped you back in time, making it feel like an old Christmas all over again.  It also helped that it was the yearly festival they call "Jasper in January" and that meant all the Christmas lights and decorations remained, giving the town even more of the ambiance of times gone by.  It truly was a peaceful and beautiful weekend.

Have a great day.
Everyone today will be all abuzz about it being Friday the 13th, supposedly the unluckiest day of all.  Why?

Well, we all know that it started with movies and media branding the 13th an unlucky day, but my thoughts are this:  If you keep repeating that its going to be unlucky, then it will be... if you speak it out loud, it will come to pass.   You are the creator of your days, you have control in how you look at it... if you choose to point blame at a number, on a certain day, remember...when you point a finger, three are pointing right back at you.

I choose to make it my luckiest day.  What about you?

Have a wonderful day and weekend.
A friend and I were talking this morning and she brought up something that happened back in October or November and when she did, it felt like she was talking about eons ago, not just a month or so ago.

The older I get, the faster time seems to go. Years ago, I remember telling my kids, for one reason or another, that it'll only be a blink of an eye and they'll wake up one morning 30 years old, wondering what they did with their life (thankfully they all listened and are successful.  I'm so proud of my babies).  However, the one thing I didn't think about when I was being so wise, was that meant I would wake up that same day much older too.  Yikes!

Time is a gift, use it well.

Have a great day.
Yesterday when I was at the gym, trying to get through my set of squats, I started thinking about how easy it is to get caught up in looking after everyone else, ensuring they're happy, that you forget about yourself.  I know what that feels like, I did it my whole life.

It takes a complete lifestyle change to make yourself number one, but not only that, you must believe that you deserve it and you're worthy of it.  You see, most nurturer and caregiver personalities tend to think that they should come last, putting they're wants and desires at the bottom of the list, and everyone else's first.

Well, from experience let me tell you, if you don't take the time for yourself, there is no way that you're completely happy.  I also want to say that you are worthy and if it takes you an hour or a week or months to find yourself and nurture your soul, you won't regret it.  The people closest to you may not like it while you're on that self-discovery, but they will love the person that comes out the other end.  I can guarantee it, I'm living proof.

Have a Great Day.

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