Monday, July 11, 2016

They're In The Mail

A reprieve in the postal situation in Canada that was threatening a mail shutdown, gave me enough wiggle room to get the signed books off to Goodreads winners this morning.  I believe the man having trouble with the photocopier was decidedly frustrated with the amount of time the transaction was taking.  But he'd already taken a fair amount of the clerk's time before my arrival and she seemed prepared to ignore him.  Meanwhile, he kept shooting frustrated looks our way, getting closer, scowling borrowing and not returning the stapler - which took more time as the clerk hunted for it.  Scowling some more, moving back and forth.  All, it seemed in a bid to get some help.  But it appeared the clerk was determined to remain focused on my mailout.  So there wasn't much I could do.  And with ten
packages all heading off to different corners of the world, it was taking a bit of time but I'd done everything I could to speed things up, the labels were written up and the packages organized as much as I could, by region.   But it all ended well, another clerk stepped in to give more assistance to the inexperienced photocopier and twenty minutes later - I can safely say the books are in the mail!

Later in the day, an afternoon jaunt headed straight into a prairie storm on a drive into the country just outside the city.  It's  the kind I remember as a child always capped off a series of hot summer days.  Recently, our summers have been up and down, hot one day, warmish the next.  But this storm came on like we'd had 30 C for a week, thunder that made me jump, and blinding rain and hail.

The storm started without much warning and ended in true prairie fashion, the air cool with the remains of the hail and everything
looking fresh and shiny.

Meantime, it's mailing list Monday over on Facebook's Harlequin Intrigue site.  My newsletter, The Walkabout is featured.  If you want to be the first to hear my book news or have access to my contests that might not be featured elsewhere, sign up now.  I'm thinking of another contest - specifically for the newsletter crowd.  Vintage anyone?  Don't miss out - The direct link is:  The Walkabout.  


Sunday, July 10, 2016

Timing is Everything

This week my timing was incredibly off.  A contest I had running on Goodreads ended at the same time that Canada Post labour negotiations appeared to hit the rockiest ever - lockout, strike were words hot in the air - oh my, what is an author to do.  I hope everything works out fairly for both sides but in the meantime I have a pile of signed books that need to get in the mail and start making their way to a few cool sounding spots in the world.

So what to to do?  I'd sat on my hands for as long as I could and on FridayI heard what could only be called, a miracle!  The union proposed a cool down period - 30 days, more than enough time, if I'm first in line at the post office on Monday, to get my books jaunting across the globe and reaching their destinations before everything again threatens to shut down.

But then, you guessed it - the  "but only if" clause kicked in and not everyone's happy.  Now I don't know if there will be mail on Monday or if the mail in Canada just ground to a halt.  My fingers are crossed for the former.  But - no worries, all you winners of Suspect Witness and you know who you are, if the post office doesn't come through, this author has decided to get creative.

Who said travel had to be a long trip.  This time, a day trip, a slip over the border and a visit with the United States Postal Service in a little Montana town not too far from home should do the trick.  A win all around, I get a jaunt, short - so no suitcase needed, and the contest winners get their books.  Not sure what customs is going to say about this when they ask the reason for the trip...sigh.  

Surely they'll agree - Problem solved - almost...  Still, fingers crossed that Monday's news makes this week's proposed trek null and void.


Saturday, June 18, 2016

Suspect Witness - Giveaway

Check out my latest contest at Goodreads - June 20 - July 4.  You could win one of ten signed Suspect Witness with matching bookmark - plus a special little gift tucked in with each book.  Check it out here:


    Goodreads Book Giveaway


        Suspect Witness by Ryshia Kennie



          Suspect Witness

          by Ryshia Kennie


            Giveaway ends July 04, 2016.
            See the giveaway details
            at Goodreads.

    Enter Giveaway

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Fitness & Exercise Motivation

Fitness & Exercise Motivation
by James Atkinson

“Fitness & Exercise Motivation” begins with a bang as it opens on a classic demotivating day - cold, grey and rainy.  It’s the type of day that is so dreary that it can easily make you want to stay, if not in bed, at least indoors.  But that isn’t where the book takes you, instead it shows you what you can and will do if you want to succeed at getting fit.

The latest on fitness from fitness guru James Atkinson, is a surprise in that it’s not so much about how to become fit as it is about how to acquire the motivation needed to become fit. He doesn’t pull any punches as, with touches of humor, he leads us along the path of mental training, the key to success.

A certified fitness coach, trainer and bodybuilder, the author knows what he’s talking about when he discusses the trials of establishing a fitness program. With powerful examples taken from his own experiences in the military and body building, he gives vivid examples of how mindset can make or break fitness goals.

Well worth a read to get motivated or just keep on hand to reread at the end of a week long training session to keep yourself motivated for the next.


Note to all you readers:  If you like to review the occasional book yourself, check out this week's Choosy Choosy Bookworm link and then scroll down to my books, Suspect Witness  and Legacy of Fear.  Both books are available for a short time in exchange for an honest review.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Every Life Is a Story

Today, I went for a bike ride along the bike path that winds through city following the path of Wascana Creek.  It's rather like being in the country when you're still in the city.  The  bullrushes crowd along the shore of the creek and birds perch on stalks of plants I can't identify.  The sky is that crystal clear blue that prairie skies are known for.  I pass a couple of women chatting as they walk their dogs, both of them wearing matching pink harnesses - the dogs that is.

The path winds along, I pass another biker and two joggers before I hit the hill that leads to the overpass, taking me over the road that rings around the city.  A semi passes and reminds me that all that nature I just left was still part of the city.

The path leads on and just across the road is the cemetery.  It's a place where my dad, grandparents and a few aunts and uncles now rest.  It's also a place that holds so many stories.  
There are sad stories here, heartbreakers like the cluster of baby graves.  But there's also lives well worn, savoured and enjoyed before a day was called.  There's the couple that were 102 and 101 when they called it a day.  There's the husband who died in 1965 and the wife who waited fifty years after that to join him.  There's the grown daughter who's name is inscribed between that of her parents' and beneath her name is something else, an image of a dog.  I'm not sure if the dog was quietly buried there as well, I like to imagine he might have been.  A lovely tribute even if a major infraction of cemetery rules.

I walk between a row of headstones, pushing my bike along, making sure that I'm the required distance from the headstones so, as my mother used to say, I don't step on anyone's feet.

In an older section, there's headstones that have been there so long that age and time has begun to dull the inscriptions.  And then there there's the imaginative inscriptions:

"He hit a home run."
"Somewhere my love."

There are secrets hidden here, some of them buried forever and maybe too dark to ever be told.  And others are just waiting to tell their story.  The stories are told in the cryptic words on a headstone, some say not a whole lot and others describe a life.

The graves are a reminder that every life has it's own unique story and oddly, there's inspiration in that.


Sunday, May 29, 2016

And then there was Alex

So for the first time I've been faced with a deadline that, well arrived sooner than I expected.  Who am I kidding?  Deadlines always arrive sooner than you expect.  So this time, while managing the deadline, I also met a new man.   Yes, that's right, a new man with a sultry voice.  Okay, not quite. Alex claims to be a man but he's not, not really, not like he claims.  In fact, he's not a man that DH need give a second thought to.  He's not fictional but he is kind of real.   He reads to me in the quiet of my office and somehow that seems so wrong.

But let me explain.  There's nothing wrong with just me and him alone in my office, his  silken tones seductive and...   Alright, so his tones are not so silken and aside from a slight hint of an accent, his voice is slightly robotic.  Although he does have his times, little nuances here and there. A mispronunciation, oops he slipped on one of my misspellings.  Alex is not quite the man of anyone's dreams but he's definitely the man I've been spending some times with lately.

Who is Alex?  Well, it's hard to describe him for he lives somewhere in the bowels of my computer.
My MacBookAir has a choice of speakers, sexes and I believe even accents.   So I chose Alex.  Now, he's the voice  that will read my story to me, should I wish.  And after reading a chapter or two one too many times, fresh eyes, no matter how mechanical, are welcome.  So Alex reads and I'm proud to say that he even has the occasional attempt at inflection.

When something just isn't quite working or you've looked at a chapter, paragraph, whatever... once too many times, Alex is my first go-to guy.  And he's done a pretty good job.  Reading to me as I drink my coffee and follow along, as the sun dashes away what is left of the night.  It's just me and Alex, my feet tucked up on my chair.  Me and Alex.  I have to admit, after a chapter or two, I'm ready to turn Alex off but he's got me out of my head and on the right path, and I suppose that was the purpose in the first place.

A good pair of human eyes beats hands down, sorry Alex.

So another deadline is met and book two of the Sheik series for Harlequin Intrigue is off to my editor.   I'm pretty excited about Zafir's and Jade's story.  They've had a wild time in Wyoming and Morocco, and I suspect those wild times have only just begun.  Now it's on to book three.  Four books, that will be out in 2017.  Emir, Zafir, Talib and Faisal - I can hardly wait to hold each of their stories, finished in my hand.

In the meantime, my neighbourhood Robin is celebrating the completion of book two, with his usual daily bath.  Which, by the way, has the squirrels and other birds squawking, chirping and flailing their tails in their annoyance that the local watering hole has been emptied.

I'm off, water bottle in hand to refill and get "everyone" settled down.