Tag Archive | Life

Editing News

If you’re one of my clients, or a potential new client, you may want to read this….

We’re coming up on August soon, which is the start of school here and my busiest time of year at the day job, so the entire month of August is blocked out to any type of editing or formatting. I work for a school district, and have to hold teachers’ hands at the start of the year and teach them how to use their new software/device or troubleshoot any issues that come up, and it is draining this time of year. We’re talking about several thousand devices, too, and a high call volume. Honestly, sometimes the teachers are worse than their students. I find it hysterical. It’s part of why I love my job.

The rest of July is already booked open, and I do have openings again starting the second weekend of September. Please plan accordingly. I’d greatly appreciate it. Otherwise, I’ll charge an extra $200.00-$300.00 if you absolutely have to have something finished in August. We’ll call it my inconvenience fee after you’ve been warned. Shiny.

Thanks for understanding!

\m/(^.^)\m/

Jinxie

Advertisements

On Writing and Life…oh, and a New Book!

One day I realized I was letting that bitch take my creativity from me….

Something happened several years ago that resulted in the loss of friendships, the loss of someone I’d considered a brother, but at the same time helped me break free from a cycle of manipulation that, under different circumstances had I not just had the love of my life walk out on me, never would have had me in the position in the first place. Vulnerability is a cunt. Now, the incident itself isn’t what’s important here; it’s the after-effects I’d like to discuss, but we need to backtrack a bit first.

Prior to the aforementioned incident, my world fell apart. Everything that I’d worked for and built started slipping away when someone I’d trusted more than anyone aside from my own mother betrayed me on a level that was too familiar. I didn’t know about the betrayal right away, however; it would be another four years before I learned of its existence, but on a level most don’t understand, I knew it was there…even before it happened. Confused? So was I for the first two years, not knowing why my world was crumbling. At any rate, shit happened and I tumbled down a spiral of depression. A good deal of it appears on this blog, and it was in the midst of that depression that the incident occurred.

Jumping forward again…. After the aforementioned incident, I had a difficult time writing much of anything. Every bit of it was a struggle, like I’d lost the drive to put words to paper. It was essentially like this person completely ruined writing for me, and in a way they had, and all I’d been able to do until recently was edit older novels and other authors’ books. I didn’t write for a good portion of these last eight years with exception to a couple of short stories and anthologies, but I’m slowly working myself back into the habit. It’s been a real bitch to do, but I try to get at least some words down. If I’m going to be honest here, I haven’t had a lot of success until recently, but it mostly happens on the weekends or during long breaks from work (school district). It was over a weekend earlier this year that I had the realization I’d allowed this to happen (the non-creativity part), and that I’d allowed someone to (figuratively) take that from me.

How could I have let this happen? I asked myself this question numerous times that night. Again, vulnerability is a cunt. There is a level of depression where you inadvertently allow people to have power over you. I’m a fairly strong person. I’m the one who stands strong when my family succumbs to sorrow. But even the strong can crumble. My ex leaving was devastating…and so, I crumbled. Once I’d realized what had happened and how, and once I forgave myself, something changed inside me. A spark re-lit the creativity.

Since then, I’ve actually been writing. And it has been glorious.

I’ve put in quite a few words this year, even for me these days, but I’m damn proud of those words because it’s taken me over two years to write this novella, and it’s currently about to release. It’s a bit longer than I intended, but if that’s what it takes to tell the story, then that’s fine by me.

Have a look….


When you’re the Prince of Darkness, how do you find true love?

Aside from lacking in the love department, Luc is having difficulty maintaining Hell and desperately needs a vacation, but when you’re the type to take on everything yourself and don’t always delegate, bad things tend to happen. Like when the harpies escaped and nearly took out a small village, or when his dog got loose and took on the traits of its father, the guard dog from Hell. If Luc doesn’t get his life together soon, there will literally be hell to pay. Behind every semi-functional man is a great woman keeping his ass in line. Considering Hell’s state of affairs, solitary life hasn’t really worked out for him thus far. Luc needs a woman, and soon. Is true love even attainable for the first Fallen?

Badboy69Lonely Devil looking for a match made in Hell. Must love dogs…and play well with demons.

Seph keeps finding love in all the wrong places, and is tired of men breaking her heart. Joining a dating site wasn’t the brightest idea, but when she meets Luc, it seems as though the Universe finally grants her wish. She gets bad boy, hot, and powerful all rolled into one. Little does she know: Luc is the one and only Prince of Darkness.

26ProserpinaLonely Maiden looking for the king to her queen, to rule the world together.


The Devil of Dating is available in eBook and Print formats on Amazon. I will be attending Phoenix Comicon over Memorial Day weekend and will have a few copies available, as well as copies of Dusk of Death and The 434 Revolution. Come on by the booth and say hi, and enter to win a Kindle Fire or a signed book from yours truly! If you can’t make it to comicon, I’ll be holding an online giveaway that weekend as well.

See ya soon!

Gods and Devils

Calling all devils….

I have a new book coming out!!! OMG! *bounces*

Okay, look…I know I just released one last fall and this might be a bit too soon considering it’s usually years between book releases from me, but let’s try to move past that and celebrate. Not-so-coincidentally, this new book—The Devil of Dating—shares the same world as Dusk of Death (released in August) and there will be more novellas that spin off the main trilogy.

To be honest, I’m just happy to be writing again. Finally.

What’s it about, you ask? Well, lemme tell ya! I’ve decided to mesh Greek mythology with good ol’ Christianity for this because why the fuck not, right? It’s fiction; let’s have some fun!


When you’re the Prince of Darkness, how do you find true love?

Aside from lacking in the love department, Luc is having difficulty maintaining Hell and desperately needs a vacation, but when you’re the type to take on everything yourself and don’t always delegate, bad things tend to happen. Like when the harpies escaped and nearly took out a small village, or when his dog got loose and took on the traits of its father, the guard dog from Hell. If Luc doesn’t get his life together soon, there will literally be hell to pay. Behind every semi-functional man is a great woman keeping his ass in line. Luc needs a woman, and soon. Considering Hell’s state of affairs, solitary life hasn’t really worked out for him thus far. Is true love even attainable for the first Fallen?

Badboy69 – Lonely Devil looking for a match made in Hell. Must love dogs…and play well with demons.

Seph keeps finding love in all the wrong places, and is tired of men breaking her heart. Joining a dating site wasn’t the brightest idea, but when she meets Luc, it seems as though the Universe finally grants her wish. She gets bad boy, hot, and powerful all rolled into one. Little does she know, Luc is the Prince of Darkness.

26Proserpina – Lonely Maiden looking for the king to her queen, to rule the world together.


If you haven’t guessed yet, this book is paranormal romantic comedy. Where Dusk of Death focused more on the thriller aspect of the story, The Devil of Dating is just pure romantic silly sex-filled fun. Sounds like a blast, right?  Well, why not check out an excerpt! Here’s a sneak peek of the opening for ya!


Excerpt: Chapter 1

A solitary thin vertical black line mocked Luc in its frozen state as he moved the mouse across its pad. Click. Click. Click. Not even a blink. Bang. The poor plastic creature objected with a groan at being slammed against the wooden desk.

“C’mon, work, damn it.”

Several beeps sounded from the laptop as the piece of technology protested. Not a good sign.

“Damn this thing!” Luc squeezed the defenseless mouse, but let go before he crushed the poor plastic device and broke yet another one. He let out a low growl and footsteps greeted his ears, signaling that someone had entered the room. Normally, his growling was a sign to stay the hell away from him; however, this visitor knew Luc better than anyone else and was probably the only person who could approach him in his angered state.

“Problems, sir?”

“Abercrombie, remind me to torture Gates,” Luc said. “This computer is the bane of my existence.”

“Of course, sir, I’ll mark it in Outlook for you.” Abercrombie placed a cup of tea on the desk.

“Is that the Earl Grey?” Luc reached for it as the butler nodded. “Do we have any of those little Danishes left?”

“I have some right here for you, sir.” He placed a small plate on the desk next to the tea saucer, hit a few keys on the computer’s keyboard, turned and left the room, leaving Luc to the now unfrozen computer to search the dating site once again. It had been damn near twenty years he’d used a computer for his business ventures and he still didn’t know how Abercrombie magically fixed the blasted thing when it froze. Luc was more prone to setting them on fire when they stopped working.

He scanned the profiles on Cinder.hell. Cinder: bring the heat back into your life. Cheesiest fucking tagline ever, but he had to give Dagon credit; it fucking worked.

“Boring.” Click. “Fake…everything.” Click. “Con artist.” Click. “Gold-digger.” Click. “Male.” He paused a moment with a raised brow. Click. “Isn’t there anyone on this damn site who actually wants to date?” Of course, “boring” probably did, but he wasn’t interested in that right now? “Boring” wasn’t exactly boring, or she wouldn’t be in Hell. His lack of interest stemmed more from the fact that he was bored with the cray-cray because it was exactly the same shit with every one of them. Under normal circumstances, a few of those options would pique his interest, but not this time. He wasn’t looking for sex. He could acquire that whenever he wanted.

“No luck, sir?” Abercrombie returned with a tablet—no doubt the list of beggars asking for everything they desired—and placed it on the other side of the desk. He’d attend to it shortly.

Luc leaned back in his chair, took the mug of tea, and brought it slowly to his lips. “Everyone’s looking for their soul mate, but no one wants to actually find one. They just want to fuck, which I wouldn’t normally object to and I do realize this is Hell and all, but I’m looking for a bit more this time. Someone with substance, maybe sassy, smart, and sexy.” He took a sip of tea. “And then there are the scam artists.” He shook his head and sighed.

“The Tunisian ones?” Abercrombie looked at the screen. “Don’t they work for you?”

“Not just the Tunisians, all of them—the Nigerians, the Russians, even the Americans—and they’re doing a shitty job,” Luc said. “They’re easy to spot. I don’t even want to know what their ‘inheritance’ emails look like. And how did they get on this site? I mean, it’s a .hell website, for fuck’s sake!”

“It’s the dark web, sir.”

“Dagon needs to not intermingle our network with the humans’.” He took another sip of tea and picked up a Danish. “I should just demolish the buildings they’re working out of.” Luc looked up at his butler. “What do you think? Big explosion, make it look like an accident? Or perhaps an earthquake.”

Abercrombie smiled. “I’ve always preferred the earthquakes, myself.”

“Done! I’ll send a memo to Poseidon. He can shove the tectonic plates around near each one.” Luc stuffed the mini Danish into his mouth and looked at the screen again. A new picture caught his attention and he stopped chewing. He didn’t remember clicking to the next profile, but there she was in all her gorgeous goddess-like glory. He swallowed his food in one gulp.

“What about her, eh, Abercrombie?” He looked up at him and grinned. “Think she can handle me?”

The butler leaned forward to get a better view of the female. “Long black hair, dark blue eyes, has that exotic look you seem to like. And look, she likes imps.” He pointed to the screen.

“She does?” Luc looked closer at her profile. “Well, look at that, she does.” On her—26proserpina—profile, under “pets” it said she liked all manner of creatures, up to and including the little imps that attempted to torture her day in, day out. “Hmm, lips, flaming heart, wink, or message?” He looked back to the monitor. “It’s like Dagon compiled every dating site ever invented into one with exception to that swiping one.”

“She did, sir, and you should just go straight for the throat,” Abercrombie said. “In a manner of speaking, that is. Message her.”

Luc grinned. “I think I will.”

“And what about the two ladies in your room, sir?”

Luc looked up at the aged Englishman. “They’re still here? Shit. I completely forgot. Take care of them for me, would you?”

“Very well, sir,” Abercrombie said and shuffled out of the room, but he turned at the last minute. “Furnace or fields, sir?”

Distracted, Luc snapped his head around. “What? Oh, just send them back into the world. If this doesn’t work out, I might want them again later.” Twins. Never kill off a set of good twins. Unless it’s absolutely necessary, of course.

“As you wish, sir.” The butler left the room.

Luc snapped his fingers and pointed at his head while trying to find the words he wanted to say before the butler was out of earshot. “Don’t forget to do the mind thing.”

“Of course, sir.”

He clicked on the message button to send 26proserpina a quick note. It took about as long as Abercrombie removing the twins from his bedroom and the house to write the blasted thing. He sent the note, asking Proserpina if she’d like to meet over coffee sometime. Simple. Sweet. Non-creepy. He hoped. It’d work or not, but seeing her photo—if it really was her in the photo; even he couldn’t tell that—stopped his entire world for that one small moment, so for the first time in a long time, he finally had hope again that he’d find his queen. He scratched his bearded chin and stood, leaving his study and heading for the master bedroom to prepare for his day.

He dressed in a nice black Armani suit, black shirt, and red tie—his favorite look—and grabbed the tablet left on his desk in the study before he vanished in a cloud of smoke, reappearing in his throne room. Checking the goings-on in Hell was the last thing on his mind, but he had to be certain all was running smoothly lest the harpies escape again or Kerberos get out. Besides, it was the day to hear from his people and those who needed help with one thing or another. As if he didn’t have enough shit on his plate, people were asking the world of him. At least he’d get something out of it.

He rubbed his hands together and clapped once. “Time to make some deals,” he said and sat on his throne.

The first approached, guided by a demon. Human. Figured. Just how he didn’t want to start his day. He’d need some strong coffee to get through this.


WHEN and WHERE can you get this spectacular paranormal romantic comedy? Well, you can pre-order HERE. Release day is May 23rd.

If you’re going to Phoenix Comicon this year over Memorial Day weekend, stop by the booth to say hi! You can find me at booth AA1028/1030hanging out with my friends Gary and Maria Wilson from Nightstalker Press. Sign up for the newsletter at comicon and you can win a signed book of your choice. Purchase a signed copy of available books from me/Just Ink Press and enter to win a Kindle Fire and some FREE books!  Don’t worry, I’ll be doing an online raffle as well for those who can’t make it to comicon. Stay tuned for that info!

Silent Killers

I read a blog post the other day that made me realize just how lucky I am that my mother is still here, and it caused a calm-before-the-storm shuddering-standstill reaction from me. I broke.

In 2007, Umi had a Pulmonary Embolism. I knew it was serious then, and I drive her to her INR appointments every two to three weeks to have her blood checked now, to make sure it’s between that 2-3 range; not too thin, not too thick. She calls it her bloodletting. I have to watch her diet, too, because certain foods can thin or thicken her blood if she has too much of it. But what I didn’t know, what I learned the other day, was how very fucking beyond serious her situation was, and by that I mean how insanely close I came to losing my mother ten years ago when she threw that blood clot. I mean, blood clots kill about 100,000 Americans each year out of the roughly 900,000 affected. One in nine; that’s too close a call in my opinion. Blood clots are silent killers. It’s not like a heart attack; instead, they’re non-violent. You can’t pop an aspirin and stop it, or perform CPR to save a person’s life. You can, however, watch for signs because there are early warnings your body shouts at you.

I wanted to comment on the post, but I couldn’t seem to find the words, knowing that this person’s sibling was gone yet my mother was still here. It didn’t feel right, I guess, commenting. It’s difficult to explain the feeling, but I suppose the closest I can get to it is that by not commenting, I’m not adding to the possible survivor’s guilt the person might be feeling since it’s such a sudden death. Make sense? I don’t know. *shrugs* I liked the post to let her know I’d read it, even if I couldn’t offer words.

Umi’s 71st birthday is less than a month away. Last year, I took her to Hogwarts at Universal Orlando. She had a blast. I’m not sure if I can top that this year. Maybe I’ll just cook a steak and lobster dinner for her again. And buy her a new book she’s wanted for a while now.

But there’s one thing I know for certain, something I realized the day I read that blog…

Side note: Right now, my aunt is in long term care, and it’s killing me that I can’t help her get better. All I can do is work with my family to make sure her bills are paid and she’s getting the care she needs, and find a way to take care of the house before the home my grandparents built is gone, lost to the bank and medical liens. I want this house because it is the last piece of my childhood, my grandparents, but if the sum of loans and liens is too high, I can’t buy it, and that’s killing me. Seeing my aunt cry at the thought of not going home again and losing her precious dog because none of us can take him is beyond heartbreaking, too.

I am at a loss.

WTF, Sinuses?

I am sick AF today, and of course, the best option is for me to stay in bed all comfy and cozy, bundled up in my Doctor Who fleece with my water and my meds and my chicken soup/broth and my Kleenex and my remote, and basically do another marathon of another movie series like I did Sat. and Sun. with The Hobbit and LOTR (extended editions, of course). Maybe Riddick this time. Or Marvel.

Unfortunately, I have to venture out into the world of the living today for an appointment with my allergist for yet another allergy test. Currently, I’m dealing with a sinus infection on top of the cold, because when this cold took hold, I wasn’t allowed to have my Claritin-D which keeps those from happening.

And so, here we are.

I haven’t been this sick in a really long time, and now I get to make a pit-stop at the store on my way home….because EVERYBODY wants to be near the infected in a grocery store!

I hope your Monday is much better than mine. On the bright side, I’m glad I took a vacation day for this test.

Exhaustion

One of the things about working full time at my age with everything I have to deal with on a health level on top of Umi’s health crises is that trying to promote anything regarding my books is daunting. It doesn’t help that I’ve been on medications that affect the way I think for so long that I’m starting to wonder who the hell I am anymore. I can hardly make time to write, let alone do anything else to push them forward. If I want more time to write, I get 5-6 hours sleep, maybe less. If I want to sleep and feel better, I lose writing time. If I could have even a 36-hour day, I’d be happy because I could get shit done.

I know, I know. Poor little ol’ fucking me, right? It’s damn difficult to talk about how you’re feeling without sounding like you’re whining.

The 36-hour day thing is a lie, though. We all know we’d just find more time to procrastinate, play video games, run errands (which I loathe at this stage of my life). Then you think, “Well, if I could make the same amount of money without working as many hours….” but in truth, if you’re anything like me, you’d just find more work to do that isn’t what you need/want it to be. It’s a mindset thing, really. I can’t seem to get my mind used to the idea that my writing is THE job and the IT shit is the hobby. It might have something to do with my paychecks.

Health-wise, there are a million things wrong with me, but hey, none of it is trying to kill me at this present time, so if I could just push past the fatigue and brain fog, and piercing headaches, I could actually get shit done. Right now, all I’m getting done is shit at the day job, or shit that people send to me with money attached because I do things for money. Not those things. THESE things. I started working out again, waking up at 5:00 A.M. because I’m apparently insane. Doc is slowly working me off one of three meds that affect how my brain works, or doesn’t, really; I’m just hoping the hellish pain of the pinched nerve doesn’t return with it. By the way, I started this post a while back. Hell, there’s a fifth installment of The Secret Life of Jinxie G that’s been sitting in draft since February. That’s how tired I am. I get home, get comfy (if I don’t have to go to the store or take Umi to a doctor appointment or do anything else outside the house), and veg out in front of my TV for the next few hours before bed, making dinner at some point in between, because by this point I. Am. Exhausted.

*collapses*

*sits up again*

I keep telling myself to STFU, stop making excuses, and get the shit done. Then my body laughs at me and I realize that I’m really not making excuses 99% of the time. Okay, maybe 90% of the time. But still….

Know what else causes the exhaustion? Allergies. My body is fighting off everything outside right now, so having to even set foot out my front door means either hives or not breathing, and I kind of like breathing. Working with people who insist on leaving a fucking door open regardless of what I say because “It’s so nice outside” does not help me in the breathing department. I’m having trouble breathing now, and I have a headache. Both signs of the allergens outside kicking my ass.

the adventure begins

 

LHogwarts Castleast week, Umi and I took off to Florida for a couple of adventures. The first was to cross Hogwarts off Umi’s Bucket List. We had a blast. I’ll write up a separate post for that.

The second reason we were in Florida was because my BFF from high school got married! Seriously, I’m writing that post soon because the groom’s entrance was thunderous.

My point for telling you about the vacation is that when we returned home, I needed a vacation from my vacation. I tried to wake up at 5am to work out….no go. So I’ve decided I’ll start that routine again next week. I’m still pretty fucking tired like I’ve been all week long. I’m starting to think it’s just being in this state with the allergy attack going full throttle, and I don’t know what to fucking do about it….except sleep.

It’s all just extremely frustrating because while I can vomit a few paragraphs onto a blog post here or there (which has been pretty fucking sporadic lately), writing or editing my own work (books) is difficult to do at home, after work, or even on the weekends because I so very fucking tired (that typo proves it). I’m not even going to go into the arthritis in my hands and elsewhere as of late.

*head desk*

Something needs to change. I just don’t know what it is yet. Well, I might have an idea….

Skinny Orange Chicken

…unless you eat more than one serving.

Okay, I found this little gem on Pinterest. Now, sometimes you run into a recipe that is just garbage, likely because some bored jackass felt like getting his jollies off making people taste shitty food. I prefer to witness events that I place in motion, but that may just be me. Regardless, this recipe actually checks out because I’ve made it twice now. The second time I had to tone down the spices a bit and add more liquid, but I’ll explain that below.

Skinny Orange Chicken

2016-02-03_20-53-18

This is supposed to be healthier than the restaurant version. Not sure if that’s exactly true, but since I use mostly organic items and fresh at that, it very well could be these days.

YIELD: about 4-6 servings
PREP: 10 mins
COOK: 10 mins
TOTAL: 20 mins

INGREDIENTS:

2 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces
salt and pepper
2 Tbsp. olive oil
orange chicken sauce (ingredients below)
toppings: thinly-sliced green onions, toasted sesame seeds, orange zest

ORANGE CHICKEN SAUCE INGREDIENTS:

3 cloves garlic, minced (I do pressed; same fucking thing in my book)
1/2 cup orange juice
1/2 cup honey
1/3 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
3 Tbsp. cornstarch
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. white pepper
zest of one orange
pinch of crushed red pepper flakes

Here’s where I altered it the second time I made it; the sauce. I doubled the orange juice and used only 2 Tbsp. of cornstarch to keep it from becoming too gelatinous, and I held back about half the ginger and white pepper. That way Umi could eat it without gagging. Me too, for that matter. And I only used two boneless, skinless chicken breasts instead of 2 lbs. I also cooked white rice instead of the quinoa below. I may give that a try the next round.

(OPTIONAL: QUINOA INGREDIENTS)

1 cup dry quinoa
2 cups chicken broth

DIRECTIONS:

TO MAKE THE ORANGE CHICKEN:

0203161913Season chicken generously with salt and pepper.

Heat oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add chicken and saute for about 4-6 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is browned and nearly cooked through.

Pour in the orange chicken sauce, and stir to combine. Let the sauce come to a boil, then boil for an additional minute or two until thickened. Remove from heat and serve immediately over quinoa or rice. Garnish with green onions, sesame seeds and additional orange zest.

0203161913b


TO MAKE THE ORANGE CHICKEN SAUCE:

Whisk all ingredients together until combined. If you would like the sauce to be even sweeter, add an extra 2-4 tablespoons of honey.

TO MAKE THE QUINOA:

You can see Ali’s step-by-step photo tutorial for how to cook quinoa here.

Piacere!

Vive bene, spesso l’amore, di risata molto!

(live well, love much, and laugh often)