Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Dana Did a Dumb-Dumb

Ever been hit by the spring cleaning bug? Because I was, on Saturday, actually. Everything, and I mean everything, suddenly needed to be dusted, like, NOW. So here I am, running around with my spray bottles,paper towels, and a look in my eye that scares the children, cleaning like a deranged Cinderella who's late for the ball.

Now, to be honest, my kids do help when I need to clean the house. They have their methods, and I have mine.

We're working on that.

So all through the day, Dusty is reminding me to watch my spoons, and I'm telling him I'm fine, I'm good. I've got this. Yeah, I'm in pain, but that's normal, that's an every-day thing.

I was oh, so wrong.

I'm cleaning, and I'm making sure to take breaks here and there so I don't push myself. But I did things I know I'm not supposed to do, like the dishes (a lot of twisting and bending...it's bad for my back). I lifted things, and moved things, and hell, I even cooked dinner when we were all done. But I'd forgotten to listen to the warning signs that I'd used up too many spoons.

First, the heavy pain, where you can barely move, but you make yourself, because it will get better if you get up and move around rather than let your spine lock. We all know this, right? Everyone who has arthritis knows it's better to move through the pain.

If I had just stopped there, everything would have been fine. But, nope. My brain was stuck on MUST. CLEAN. My body was stuck on, OH. SHIT. And when those two collide, it's... well...

The second sign is my back going numb. I can't feel anything. That just encourages me to keep going, because hey! I'm not in pain anymore! Standing up and moving around really helped! So you think you're all good. Nothing's gonna break your stride, just like that song (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j3YrNSw5a2I), and you can take on the world.

I finished cleaning, cooked dinner, and realized that I was hurting again, but on a much larger scale. I lay down, certain I would be fine in the morning. See, I didn't realize I'd taken my spine and turned it into a pretzel. And since I'm not a cat, this is a bad thing.

Once I went to bed, the pretzel undid itself while I slept, causing all those lovely nerve endings to once again send signals of "What the fuck did she do this time?!?"  And being the good wife I am, when the dog whimpered at five in the morning to be let out, I tried to get up. After all, it was Dusty's birthday weekend, and I wanted him to sleep in for a change. So when I sat up, I wasn't prepared for the stars to be so pretty, or for my back to suddenly hit the mattress once more. I hadn't just thrown my back out. I'd hit it with a stick until all its candy fell out, danced the samba on it, twirled it overhead, twerked against it like a three year old drying their butt to music, and only threw it out once it looked like a frat boy after a three day bender.

So Dusty got up, I stayed in bed, and my back got even with me by keeping me there for two days.

But hey, my house is clean, right?

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

NEW RELEASE: Figure of Speech (Halle Shifters 4)

Halle Shifters Book 4
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Length: Novel
ISBN: 9781619226364
Release Date: March 3, 2015

When two hearts speak as one, no words are needed.

Chloe Williams has waited four long years for her mate to acknowledge her. Time and again he has turned her away for being too young, even when she was hospitalized, recovering from a beating that left lingering aftereffects. Now that he’s been turned into a Wolf, his mating instincts are kicking in big time. Chloe has to decide if it’s worth risking her heart yet again.

Ten years older than Chloe and dealing with issues she knows nothing about, veterinarian James Woods is about ready to howl in frustration. He’s been drawn to Chloe since she was a radiant nineteen-year-old college student, but the age difference held him back from making a move on her. Now his Wolf wants what’s his, and Jim is finally in a place where he can claim her.

Between meddling mothers, Hunter brothers, and a mystery that threatens to end Chloe's life, they might find an opportunity to tell each other just how they feel. Or find themselves separated by more than just misunderstood words.

Warning: This book contains explicit sex, graphic language, and two people who finally get their damn act together.

His arm tightened around her shoulders. “You okay?”


“At?” He didn’t sound concerned, but he did sound…absent? Like he was listening to two things at once.



She shrugged. “I didn’t understand why you wouldn’t accept me when I knew we were bent to be together.”

“But now you do.” He kissed the top of her head. “I was human. And honestly? Even now, I feel a little wrong because of how young you are.”

She poked him in the side. “Get over it.”

He laughed, but the tone of it was still off.

“What’s wrong?”

He shrugged casually, but the way his body stiffened next to hers told her that there was more going on than he wanted to let on. “Nothing.”

Uh-huh. Chloe sniffed discreetly, catching a whiff of…cat?

Jim tilted his head toward her and whispered in her ear, “I hear footsteps.”

She kissed his chin, adding, “I smell cat. The shifter kind, not the Tom and Jerry one.”

They exchanged a worried glance but didn’t hurry their pace. They didn’t want whoever was following them to know that they were aware of him.

And it was a him, from the masculine scent that was layered all over the scent of cat. Chloe sniffed again and rubbed her nose, trying to see if the scent was familiar. “So.”


“What do you have up your sleeve for date number two?” Whoever it was, it wasn’t a Puma. She knew that scent inside and out after so long in Halle.

“I was thinking perhaps a trip to the beach.”

She stumbled. “Overnight?”


Well. For a man who’d been reluctant to claim her he was certainly willing to move fast now. “I’d have to ask my mommy if I can have a sleepover.”

“Brat.” But he was smiling, his gaze bright with laughter.

She skipped for a few steps, humming tunelessly.

“You are never going to let me live this down, are you?”

“Nope.” And now that she had the full picture she was going to have fun with it. Maybe it would help them both get over their hang-ups.

He chuckled. “Little girl, would you like a taste of my lollipop?”

She began to giggle uncontrollably, actually snorting once or twice before she got herself back under control. “That was so bad.”

“How can you tell? You haven’t even tried it yet.” He winked when she stared up at him, shocked.

She licked her lips, blushing even harder when he groaned.

Jim pulled her tighter against him, focusing once more on where they were going. “Stop distracting me, little vixen.” He shivered. “For now, anyway.”

Chloe put her head against his chest. “It’s not a Puma,” she breathed.

“Anything familiar about it?”

She shook her head. “I fish there was.” She frowned as the scent began to fade. “College student?”

“Are there a lot of shifters at U of P?”

He sounded so surprised she had to laugh. “Yeah. Max, and Mr. Freidelinde before him, were both cool with shifters attending this branch. Not all Alphas are, so those that are okay with it let the Senate know. The Senate then sends a list out to all the Alphas for their college-bound high school students to choose from.”

“Sounds complicated.”

“It can be, especially for the hosting Alpha, but the students are aware that while they are under their home Alpha’s jurisdiction while here, they’re also subject to Max’s authority if they cross the fine he’s set for acceptable behavior.” The scent faded further, making her think they’d been worried over nothing. “I’m willing to get that’s all it was, just someone out for a stroll.”

He shrugged. “We still haven’t found your attacker, so sorry, I’m still going to worry.”

“Thanks.” She patted his chest.

“You’re mine to protect now.” The soft growl in his voice told her the Wolf was once more peeking through his control. As new as he was, she was surprised it wasn’t happening more, but Jim was turning out to have awesome self-control. “That means I worry when I sense something is wrong.”

The unknown cat scent was almost completely gone. “Whoever he was, he’s gone now.”

Jim still seemed tense, so she petted his chest, hoping to calm him. “My attacker might not be one of us. I was told there were no witnesses to who did this to me, just someone who called 9-1-1 from a payphone. Gabe never found out who it was.” She didn’t remember much of that night, just pain, pain and more pain. “But Gabe told me that other half-breeds had been attacked in the same way and left for dead.”

The tension in Jim went to DEFCON 1. “Oh really?”

“Yes.” His tension was making her afraid. She glanced behind her, but there was nothing there to see. It was just another sweet summer night in her favorite town. “You don’t think…?”

“Have you sensed anything around you since you got out of the hospital?”

She shook her head. “Nope. There was the stuff with Tabby and her attacker, but nothing came of that. Not that I know of, anyway. Then Cyn was hurt, but that had more to do with Tabby than Cyn. And Hope has nothing to do with it at all.”

He took a deep breath. “We need to talk to Gabe then. I want to make sure your attackers are long gone.”

“We can do that. I know between his Hunter duties, his mate, his status as Second and being sheriff he’s been swamped. Want me to call and set something up?”

Jim stared at her, and his tone when he answered was neutral. “Sure.”

“Friends.” She pinched his cheeks. “Friends,” she drawled, hoping to get him to laugh.

He pulled away with a grunt. “I believe you, I just…”

“Can’t stand Gabe?”

He rolled his eyes. “I can take him or leave him. In a ditch. Full of fire ants.”

“You’re mean.” But she snuggled closer, secretly pleased her mate was jealous, even if it was over nothing. The fact that he hated that she’d spent time with Gabe meant there was more to his feelings than the pull of his Wolf. He’d reacted poorly to Gabe’s presence in her life long before he’d been bit. It had been getting Jim to see they were meant for each other that had been difficult.

“Don’t be too pleased with your little redheaded self. We’re still going to discuss the attack on you.” He humph’d, sounding so much like an old man she had to hold back yet another laugh. “Until we figure out who it was I consider you still in danger. If that means I have to make nice to Gabe I will.”

“I try not to think about it too much.” She sighed. This was so romantic. “Julian offered to try and help me recover memories of my attacker that might be buried, but the effort to do so would be dangerous for both of us.”

“Then no. Not unless it’s the only thing left we can try.” He stopped dead and took her face between his palms. “You’ve hurt enough, Chloe. No more.”

“No more,” she whispered back, enthralled by his golden Wolf.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Catch Up with Cactching Up

I think the holidays killed me.

First, we got Amy, aka Destructo Pup, who we have since discovered through her pet records was named for Amelia Pond. We've decided this is fate, and are now waiting for a Tardis to appear in our living room.

Any day now. Any day...

Then the holidays hit, and we had a blast at my mother's. We also had company in the form of my brother-in-law, his wife and their two children, who stayed with us until just after New Year's. We had a blast, the kids even more so. Needless to say, there was a massive hunt for Nerf darts come January 2nd.

And then...the flu hit. M got it first, high fever, sore throat, the works. Then Mommy got it, then The Furry Teenage Human. Dusty, the SOB. got sniffles for, like, half an hour. I swear, that man would survive a zombie bite with nothing more than an itchy rash and a mild desire for strawberry Jello brains.

But hey, something good came of the flu. I couldn't really write, but I could edit, so while sick I got the second round of edits done on Song of Midnight Embers (Maggie's Grove 4). We're now going into copy edits. Yay!

Now that I'm well again I've finally started Wolf's Bane (Heart's Desire 4), the final book in that series. Be aware that the working title will probably change as I get into the story. So far Daniel is being as stubborn as I knew he'd be, and Kerry isn't going to let him get away with his shit for a second.

Dusty gave me some neat ideas on how to continue on with the magical world of the Becketts, and I'm seriously thinking about it. No shifters, because only the Becketts are shifters in that world, but he said he'd love to see more of the Own, both the God's and the Goddess's. I agreed, and could see how I could write that series of warriors on the hunt for evil magic-doers. I'll decide soon whether or not I'm going to go for it, but I'm leaning toward yes.

Also: more flu. Yay! Only this time, it was the stomach variety, with lots of nastiness. Again, Dusty burped once, farted twice, and that was it. I swear, I'd think he was an alien except he's allergic to, like, outside.

Wait. Maybe he is an alien. Outside could be his green kryptonite, after all.

So we've survived the holidays, the plague x2 AND a new puppy. And you know what I got out of all of this?

That's right. I need to change my newsletter.

Don't ask where that came from. I was left on my own for far too long as I recovered from the plague, and this was the result. I'm tired of Yahoo messing up the stuff I send out. While I like the fact that you, the readers, can sign up or unsubscribe on your own with no interference from me, I dislike the fact that half of the images I include in the newsletter get screwed up. I've also lost some control over how I deal with the Yahoo page, and when it mails things out. I'd like to switch to something that's designed to handle just newsletters, so I'm researching it. I'll let you know when the change will be happening as soon as I decide on a company. If anyone has any suggestions, I'd love to hear them.

So on that note...PUPPY!

She's a goof, but she's our goof.

Monday, December 22, 2014

On the Twelfth Day Of Christmas

My true love gave to me:

Twelve broken chew toys
Eleven piles of piddle
Ten kitty scratches (Sorry, Darren!)
Nine kibble dramas
Eight pissed off kitties (No, really. It's just two. Seems like more, though.)
Seven butts a'sniffed at
Six gnawed on rawhides
Four yowling cats (I swear, it's just two)
Three trash can raids
Two tired parents
And a new puppy we named Amy!

Look at those paws. She's only eighteen weeks old. Now imagine how much more growing she has to do to fit into them.

And, to be fair, the rescue named her Amy. We just decided to keep it.

Thumper has been darting in and out of sniffing distance, fur raised and tail fluffy. Darren, on the other hand, wants nothing to do with Ms. Waggy Tail and would prefer to be left alone, thank you very much.

Precious is following Amy, and Amy is following Precious. Precious even let Amy take one of her bones, something even we humans aren't really allowed to do. We have no idea what breed is mixed in our new mutt, other than some kind ouf hound dog.

Favorite Quotes

"I had the right to remain silent, but I didn't have the ability." Ron White

"So let me get this straight. You want me to kill the little guys, kill the big guys, crowd control those I can't, buff the team, debuff the boss, keep myself alive, AND keep you alive, all while waving a stick and dressed in a towel?" - Anonymous Role Playing Gamer

"I think that statue over there is a statement on modern life. The statement is, "Well, shit." - Varric, Dragon Age II

"Why is it all claws and guns? Can't we piss off a fuzzy planet? Still dangerous, but hey. Bunnies." - Joker, Mass Effect

"Last night, I lay in bed looking up at the stars in the sky and thought to myself, "Where the heck is the ceiling?" - Dilbert

"Aim at the high mark and you will hit it. No, not the first time, not the second time and maybe not the third. But keep on aiming and keep on shooting for only practice will make you perfect. Finally you'll hit the bull's-eye of success." - Annie Oakley

"It is only when you fall that you learn whether you can fly." - Flemeth, aka The Witch of the Wilds, Dragon Age 2

"The very existence of flamethrowers proves that sometime, somewhere, someone said to themselves, 'You know, I want to set those people over there on fire, but I’m just not close enough to get the job done.'” - George Carlin

"I hear there's a wild bridge tournament down the street. And you know Bridge. It's a lot like sex. If you don't have a great partner, you'd better have a good hand." Barry Weiss, Storage Wars

"You know, I used to think it was awful that life was so unfair. Then I thought, wouldn't it be much worse if life were fair, and all the terrible things that happen to us come because we actually deserve them? So, now I take great comfort in the general hostility and unfairness of the universe." - Marcus Cole, Babylon 5, "A Late Delivery From Avalon"

"I aim to misbehave." - Capt. Malcolm Reynolds

"Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid." - Albert Einstein

“If you think you can or think you cannot, you are correct.” - Henry Ford