Friday, December 23, 2016

Happy Holidays!

I'm taking next week off (starting December 24th) to enjoy the holidays with my family, so I won't be on social media at all if I can help it. I'm going to glut myself on video games until my eyes cross, eat pasta and fish, and pretend work doesn't exist until Monday, January 2nd. That also means that my newsletter will be a bit late since I'll have company visiting from December 30th to the 2nd of January.

I want all of you to have a wonderful holiday, no matter which one you celebrate. I'll see you all next year.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Dana Prism Powers, MAAAAKE! UP!

Hah. If you got the title, I bow to you. You remember Bunny's favorite anime series, Sailor Moon! But I'm not talking about anime right now (though I could, oh, I could). Nope. I'm talking makeup.

Note: If you don't like makeup, check out Crunchyroll. If you don't like and chill? But this post isn't for you.

It's December, the month where I tend to replace my 12 month expiration date makeups like eyeshadow, foundation and primers. (Although I just bought a new mascara, Nyx's Doll Eye, this week, and I'm wearing it today. So far...impressed!) So I'm surfing Sephora and Ulta and I'm overwhelmed by holiday stuff.

God, I need this stuff.

No, really. Now is a great time to buy makeup. With the holiday sales and promos, you can get good makeup that's relatively inexpensive (by Sephora standards, anyway). And Ulta carries both high-end and drugstore makeup, so it's full of win!

I'm still loving my Too Faced Melted liquid lipsticks, and my god the Too Faced chocolate bar palettes are my go-to palettes. I may not buy the Kat von D Shade and Light again, since I rarely use it, but her mini-palettes were really nice.

But this year, like a lot of people, I'm on a budget, so I'll be looking for good drugstore dupes for a lot of these. I'm watching makeup videos on YouTube to find what I want and where I can get it. So far my faves are Tati and Zabrena, because they both do high-end and drugstore makeup tutorials and reviews. And they both like to do dupe videos, which I'll probably be binge-watching before I buy.

Does anyone else have the Grav3yard Girl Tarte palette? Because, LOVE. As in, full on heart boner.

Too bad it's limited edition and won't be in stock ever again. I'll have to see if I can find a good drugstore dupe, but I doubt it. Gator Wings (the highlight) is just too awesome.

As for foundation, I need one that's more hydrating than my current one (the Kat von D Lock-It Primer and Foundation are what I use), so I'm looking at Tarte's Rainforest foundation. I like their stuff, so I'm hoping I'll like that.

Blushes I'm on the fence about. I haven't found one I love, since I like peachy shades rather than pink and they tend to be harder to find. NARS is supposed to be really good, but so is E.L.F., which is way less expensive (and I like the name).

As for skincare, there's only one holiday pack I want, and that's the boscia Mask It All. It has all of the masks I want for less than the price of one. And I checked: the black mask is the same amount of product as the stand-alone. So are the others. A great price for the set.

Are you looking to pick up any holiday makeup for yourself? If not, what are your go-to, gotta have items?

P.S.: Has anyone else played around with contouring? Because I've had mixed results.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

RIP Darren

Poor Darren. He got sick with something so rare our vet had only seen it four times before in ten years. In DOGS. Never in cats. There was not much we could do for him, and he passed quietly in Dusty's lap last night just before midnight. We're all devastated by the loss of our Foster Kitty, as is his momma, Piper J. Drake. Here's what she said about him on Facebook:

Received sad news tonight. Rest in Peace my Darren.
Just out of college, I was in PetSmart. There was a large crate of kittens too young to be away from their mother, but they'd been abandoned and were there to find new homes. A man and his large dog were too near the kitten crate and the man was allowing his dog to terrorize the kittens. Almost all of the kittens were cowering in the bottom of the crate in the litter pan.
It was Darren at 4 weeks old, a dusty orange tabby, who climbed up to the top corner of the crate, stuck out a paw, and whapped the dog right across the nose. I took Darren home with me and he helped me make a home for a pack of 3 dogs.
Heartfelt thanks to Dustin & Dana for fostering him these past years when my living circumstances didn't allow for me to have him with me.
Goodbye, my Ninja Kitteh. May there be much catnip.

Goodbye, Darren. We love you.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving!

Here are some Turkey Day memes I couldn't help but share with you. Enjoy, and don't eat too much pie! 

Monday, October 31, 2016

Hold On

So. Hour of the Wolf is now on hold.

Yeah, I know. It's almost done, so now I put it on hold? Let me explain.

See, I realized that I'd been struggling for a while not only to complete this one, but to write at all. I'd lost my mojo.

After a long discussion with Dusty, I've decided that I need to set my current WIP aside and work on something else for a while. I hate doing it, but he's right. As it stands, that WIP will certainly get rejected. It's bad, guys. BAD.

I'll admit, I hate disappointing you guys who've been waiting for Noah and Iva's story, but trust me when I say this isn't the story they deserve. I'll get back to it, I promise you that. I just need to be in a place where I can edit and end it the way they (and you) deserve. So while it's on hold and I'm getting my mojo back, I'm working on Hide and Seek, the next True Destiny book.

Speaking of rejection, More Than Words was rejected by Carina Press. I'm going to go over it and, once I'm satisfied it's the best it can be (again), I'm going to send it to Samhain Publishing. If they take it, the series is theirs. If they don't...

I might self-publish it.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Kitty Cuisinart, I Choose YOU

So today I decided to pet my cat, Thumper. Mostly because he insisted, like he does most mornings at some point.

Doesn't he look so sweet and innocent?

Don't let that fool you. He's known as Psycho Kitty by my friends, and for a brief moment in time I forgot that.

Most of the time he hops on my lap, allows me to pet him, then descends to disappear to wherever he spends time when he's hiding from the dogs, or humans, or Darren. So today seemed like nothing new when he came to my desk and began stropping against my legs.

I should have kept an eye on the tail, though. That's usually a dead giveaway.

I don't know what I did, or who did what to him, but he decided about five seconds in that he was going to maul the shit out of me.

Hell, I even fell for the "pet my belly" trick because I was distracted thinking about my WIP. It was just like sticking my hand into, well...

Yeesh. Kitty is pissed. Maybe because I gave Precious (our elderly dog) pets first? Eh, it's not like I understand what they're thinking or anything.

Maybe I should just keep my hands on the keyboard.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Damn It.

Due to my medical bills, the only convention I'll be attending next year is Coastal Magic in Daytona, FL.

Normally I don't talk about this, but one test, JUST ONE, cost me over $1400. That was the sleep test to see if I had sleep apnea (I do, but a mild case). If you don't believe that having a chronic disorder can cost you in more than pain, here you go. Aqua therapy will be an on-going thing, but something I can do on my own. The therapy for my shoulder is done, but I still have some work to do at home as I haven't got complete mobility back. But all of that cost me as well. Add in my prescriptions, doctor's visits, etc, and Dana has no convention budget left to speak of.

So, yeah. I'm totally bummed, but I'd already planned on skipping Lori Foster's Reader Author Convention (one of my favorites, too) due to Eldest Son graduating high school on the day that convention starts. So next year will be me playing catch-up, and I plan on enjoying the hell out of the one convention I'll be going to.

Don't worry, this is all stuff I can deal with, but it bites into my convention budget for next year big time. I'll be back in 2018's convention circuit. I plan on continuing my participation in both Coastal Magic and the Lori Foster's Reader Author Convention. I haven't decided about MBLU, and I won't until I attend it, so please don't ask. As for the larger conventions like RT and RWA, I may have to continue passing on them. Way too much money for me at the moment, and I don't want to promise you guys something I can't deliver.

I want everyone who is attending these cons next year to have a wonderful time, and to toss one back for me, okay? Even if it's just a cherry pepsi.

You all should know how much I love my wild cherry pepsi.

P.S.: The only cons I've mentioned that I haven't yet attended are MBLU and RWA. The others I have, and I've enjoyed all of them.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

I Love My Lyrica; Also, MBLU Convention News

Okay, so maybe this week was all my fault after all, but OMG, never, EVER forget to order your Lyrica. 

I put in a request for my doctor to renew my Lyrica prescription on the 6th. Unfortunately, it didn't get to its destination, and by Sunday I was out of Lyrica. Worse, on Saturday I'd done quite a bit to help my husband and kids do some work in the dining room that had been put off for a while.

By Monday I was in so much pain I couldn't even lay on my back anymore. I spent two days lying on my side as Dusty called the rheumatologist and got them to send the prescription to a different pharmacy, one closer to our home.

But hey, the dining room is looking much better.

I'm working today and hoping to make up some time by working on Saturday. It will keep my broken ass from doing anything stupid, at least. I think. Maybe.

Yeah, I didn't think so either.

OH! On another note, I've got some news from the MBLU Convention at the Mall of America:

Only a few days to get your hotel room for MBLU 2016! If you are joining us and would like to stay at the host hotel I highly suggest you give them a call and book your room!

Also, this! (I think this part is AWESOME!)

Hope to see you there!

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Bad News for a Good Reason

I have news. I won't be going to the Lori Foster Reader & Author Get-Together in 2017.

Yeah, I know. I hate that I have to miss it, but I promise you it's for a very good reason. You see, R, aka Eldest Son, graduates from high school the first day of the Get-Together.

He knows what college he wants to get into, and we think he's got a shot. He got a 1360 on his SAT's on his first try, and he's thinking of taking them again to see if he can do better. I don't know if I should encourage him or give him the "Are you fucking KIDDING ME?!?" look.  

As a writer, I'm sorry I'm going to miss getting to see all of my friends, fellow authors and fans. As a parent, however...

"I got one to semi-adulthood without killing him or bailing him out of jail!"

P.S.: I have every intention of going in 2018, so save me a spot!

Monday, August 15, 2016

Ah, Physical Therapy...

Physical therapy.

It all sounds so easy at first, doesn't it?

"Let's put some heat on that joint, then we'll do a simple massage to work out some of the bad stuff that's built up in the muscle and tendon that you've damaged."

"Then a few simple stretches, working with the resistance bands, and you're done!"

"We'll even give you a few things to do at home that will help a lot."

"Remember, don't overextend your elbow during your nerve stretches."

"We'll set up your next appointment for...wait, where are you going?"

But in reality, if I really did try to quit Dusty would never let me. He'd con me into the car with promises of Starbucks or Dunkin' Donuts, then laugh as we drove off to my torture.

So I get to go again this week, and next week, and the week after...

Friday, July 8, 2016

Samhain is NOT Closing

I repeat: Samhain Publishing is NOT closing!

What this means is I don't have to shop your favorite series out to another publisher. I can start working on them again soon, once submissions are open again. Since I have contracts with them already for three books (Electric Dreams, Hope in Darkness and Hide and Seek) I'll be working on those after I'm done Hour of the Wolf.

For you guys, this means there was an unexpected delay in the books you want. I'm sorry for that, but it wasn't my call and I was pretty panicked over what might happen to some of my favorite series.

And now I don't have to  panic anymore.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

A New 'Do For the Ol' Website

Did you know you could recreate an eight year old website in two and a half days on caffeine and chocolate alone?

I do now. Mostly.

Yahoo! Sitebuilder has gotten clunky with age, making it more and more difficult to maintain my website. Add in the numerous tablets and cell phones people were viewing my website on, and I was getting numerous complaints about how it looked and how it scaled. So it was time for a change. And after doing some research, I decided to use Wix to recreate it.

My website is now brand-spanking new, tablet/phone friendly, and a lot more streamlined than it was before. Each series has its own page with the books in reading order; new release(s) and coming soon are on the front page, and my newsletter will now be through Mailchimp rather than the Yahoo! group I was using. (That, too, has been annoying me for a while, so it was time to change it as well.) My convention schedule is listed under my bio and my contact me page has the subscribe to my newsletter form as well as my PO box listed on it.

The only thing not moving is this blog, because a) it works just freakin' fine and b) the thought of moving eight years of archived blog posts gives me hives.

Note that the excerpts for the books aren't there, nor are the free reads. I'm working on that part still, but it was time to get back to working on my new book before my brain exploded in a shower of HTML code. Give me time to work that stuff out. It will be there...eventually.

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