Monday, December 31, 2012

Newsflash – I’m Fat!

There I said it.

It’s an unfortunate truth, but it is a truth nonetheless.

Here’s another truth.

Wait for it…

I know I’m fat.

It’s not a surprise.

It’s not a secret.

I have a mirror.

Here’s my question, why is it that fat people are treated differently than other people?

We’re talked down to as though we’re stupid. We’re talked about as though we’re deaf. Some people actually point and laugh as if we’re blind or simply too stupid to notice.

Think I’m over-reacting? Lemme share some examples.

I was at the grocery store recently stocking on junk food. Not for me – but for the multi-day LAN party my kids were having. Six teenage boys = a lot of snack food and Mountain Dew. Yes, there were also healthy food options – there always are. But, LAN parties are a once in a while thing, and I don’t see a problem with otherwise healthy and active teenage boys having an occasional junk food feast.

The hipster couple in line behind me felt the need to discuss my food choices, saying things loud enough for me to hear over the beeping of the cash register. Things like, “Wow, I don’t think there’s one healthy thing in her cart.” And “It’s no surprise she looks the way she does.”

I could have turned around and explained that my purchases weren’t their business. I could have told them to fuck off. I didn’t do either of those things even though I probably should have. I just continued on as if I couldn’t hear them and got out of there as quickly as possible.

A few years ago, my friend, who is also overweight, got a new dress. She loved it. She said that she even felt pretty in it. She wore it exactly twice. Why, you might wonder? Because of the couple who were walking behind her at the store. The woman said, “I love that dress. It’s so pretty.” The guy said, “Yeah, but it would look better on someone who wasn’t so fat. It would look better on you. You’re skinny.” My friend was crushed. She couldn’t believe that someone that didn’t even know her would talk about her like that.  That dress is still hanging in the back of her closet.

Which brings us to today.

Today I went to cancel my membership to the YMCA. Corwin needs another round of braces and frankly, that money needs to go to my kid right now – not me.

I walked up to the desk and said, “I need to cancel my membership.”

The lady there smiled and said, “No you don’t. What you need is to get on the treadmill.” Then she sort of giggled. Because, you know, if you giggle and smile, that makes whatever steaming pile of shit you just dished up, okay.

I want to tell you that I said, “Excusefuckingme?!” and punched her in the face.

But I didn’t. I’m pretty sure I had my usual Pudgy-Bambi-in-the-Headlights look. The one that invited her to ask why I was canceling. Even though it was none of her damn business, I told her. Because standing up for myself isn’t anything I’m terribly good at.

Here’s the thing. I don’t believe she ever would have said that to me had I been thin. She would have taken my info and I would have been on my way. Actually, she probably would have made some kind of attempt to talk me into keeping my membership – after all, they are running a business and they need to keep their numbers up. But I guarantee you, whatever she said wouldn’t have been laced with judgment and fat shaming.

For some reason, there are people in this world who seem to think that they have a god given right to say anything they want about and to fat people. Guess what, assholes – you don’t.

I realize that in some twistedass way, they may feel like they’re doing me a service. Like maybe they think I don’t realize I’m fat.

Spoiler alert: I have a mirror and know how to use it.

Or maybe they think that I don’t understand that being overweight is unhealthy. ‘Cause you know…I’m real, real stoooopid like that.

Or maybe they’re just self-aggrandizing pricks who bolster their own sense of self-worth with cruelty.

I don’t know.

But I do know that this shit has got to stop. You have no idea what is happening in another person’s life – if they suffer from depression, if they have an eating disorder, if they’re ill, if someone they love just died. Any or all of those things could be true – you don’t know. For me, the first two are. Now, I wouldn’t expect a stranger to know that, but I also wouldn’t expect a stranger to say those things to me, either.

You don’t have to like me. You don’t have to find me attractive. You don’t have to have anything to do with me other than briefly interact with me if we happen to come into contact in a service industry setting. But you do need to treat me with respect. You need to treat EVERYONE with respect. Because we’re all humans. So start acting like it, damn it!

EDIT: I have another friend who never experiences this sort of thing, but who’s also overweight. We think it’s because her default expression looks like she’s pissed off and my gut you where you stand if she was in the right mood. Which is funny, since she’s usually pretty happy.  My default expression is apparently cupcake crossed with a doormat. Maybe that has something to do with the things people say. Not that I’m excusing it. I just find it interesting.

EDIT: And while we’re on the subject of things not to say to fat people, do not lecture me about my weight if you’re a smoker or tobacco chewer. Just…don’t.

EDIT: Last one – promise. In case you’re wondering, I did send an email to the personnel managers at the Y, sharing my rage. You’ll be proud of me. I didn’t say fuck. Not even once. It was super professional.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

The Worst Mama Ever Strikes Again!

I hope you all had an amazing holiday! I've gone to four family Christmas parties and I've still got one more to go. But Christmas morning with Matt and the boys was, by far, my favorite. Part of it was watching them open presents. I love giving gifts to my kids (well, pretty much to everyone) but there was one gift I was especially excited to give.

You may remember from a previous post that I've been tormenting Killian with a little porcelain angel. Well, the tormenting has continued. The last week of classes, he packed his lunch and foolishly left it sitting on the table while he finished getting ready. I couldn't just let that opportunity go by. I had to sneak the angel into his lunch sack. It was practically a moral fucking imperative.

He was, shall we say, unimpressed.

After my last post, Jen Armintrout, reigning Queen of the Interwebz sent me this link. Sarah Francz-Wichlacz is nothing short of a genius for coming up with this tutorial. The woman is brilliant, and I'm completely in her debt. I had hours of fun making this - not to mention the utter glee of anticipating giving the angel to Killian. (I know, I know - bad mama).

So while I was helping out in Corwin's art class a few weeks ago, I ended up supervising the kids who *still* hadn't finished glazing. Since I was finished with my own glazing, the teacher told me to bring in whatever I wanted to work on. And I did. I brought in all the components for a Barbie sized Weeping Angel. I wouldn't be able to fit her in a lunch sack, but that was okay.

There were at least one or two kids in each of the four classes who knew immediately what I was making. I liked them better after that.

The following are my progress pictures and the doll was cheerfully donated by my sister, Cait. It was her ice skating Barbie.

These are the wings I carved out of styrofoam and contoured with hot glue. The art teacher very happily lent me her wood carving tools which worked much better than my usual standby tool of choice - a butter knife.


This is Barbie with all her joints glued for stability looking suspiciously like a ritual murder victim. 

This is ice skating Barbie glued to the base.

This is Barbie with the her dress made from scraps of gauze and stiffened with acrylic adhesive. The same vat of acrylic adhesive I dropped and spilled all over the damn art room. 'Cause I'm awesome like that. 

This is the angel after two coats of stone fleck spray paint.

Killian holding the Weeping Angel after freaking the hell out when he opened it up. The conversation went like this:

Killian: God DAMN it!
Me: (giggling and having trouble holding the camera) Yes?
Killian: You got me this?
Me: Correction. I made you that. 
Killian: You made it? Why? Why would you do that? On Christmas?
Me: Because I love you, of course.
Killian: No you don't.
Me: Do too.
Killian: (trying not to laugh) I don't believe you.
Matt: Remember that Barbie you found in your mom's purse and she told you Nolen stuck it in there? She was lying. That's Cait's old doll. She said your mom could have it for this.
Killian: Cait was in on it, too?!
Corwin: Everyone was in on it. Even my whole art class.
Me: Jen's the one who found the tutorial for me.
Killian: Jen, too?! I will have my revenge! I don't know how, yet. But I will have it!

And here's the angel today in her rightful place on top of Killian's subwoofer.

Friday, December 21, 2012

We Have a Winner! (Late, because I suck.)

Hey Everyone,

Happy Non-Apocalypse!

In all of my running around yesterday, I totally forgot to post the winner.

But without further delays, the winner is...






Huge Congrats, Debby!!! You'll be receiving your gift certificate shortly.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Holidays with the Naughtiest Kittehs Ever

It's that time again - time when the naughtiest kittehs in the world live in our Christmas tree and destroy as many ornaments as humanly possible. Or as feline-ly possible, I suppose.

 This is what the tree looked like for about 1.5 minutes.
 Then Willow happened.
 She was so happy to gnaw on the branches.
 This is Willow's "Derp" face.
 "Oh look. A faery! SHE MUST DIE!" (Spoiler Alert: She did.)
 "Oooohhhh shiny!"
 "Hmmmm...what can I destroy now?"
 "Stalking the bookshelf."
 "Meh...bored now."

 Scaling Spruce Mountain.
 Oh look, Morrighan decided to join her sister.
 Aaaaaaaaand they're both in the tree.
 Trying to get higher...
 This is Willow's innocent look.
 Morrighan prefers boxes to the tree.

So yeah...this is what's happening at my house. Adorable, adorable naughtiness.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Interview and Giveaway with the Awesome A.M. Griffin

In October, I had the privilege of meeting the delightful, not to mention, drop dead gorgeous, A.M. Griffin.   We were seated next to each other at the RomantiCon book signing and I had an absolute blast with her, so I'm thrilled to be hosting her here today. 

She'll be giving away a ten dollar Amazon gift certificate to a lucky commenter, so please sit back and get to know A.M. Griffin and don't forget to leave a comment between now and noon on December 20th. And definitely don't forget to check out her first ever release, Dangerously Mine from Ellora's Cave - I know I'm going to!  


I’ve always written stories. I should rephrase that to say I’ve always started to write stories. I would get to the third or fourth chapter and stop, become disinterested and move on. This is the first time that I actually finished a story to the end. I wanted to put this one down as well, but a little voice told me to get over the hump (which I now know is writers block) and keep going. It was an eye opening experience to say the least, but well worth it. Once it was done I had a sense of completeness. Now I can’t seem to stop writing.

What type of research do you do for your books?

That’s the beauty of writing sci-fi. Little or no research is required. All the info comes from my imagination (which might actually be scary). For Dangerously Mine I had to look up fighting techniques and weapons which gave me a sense of how badass Eva would have to be in order to wield a bow staff and also how lethal she would have to be if she was used to throwing knives or stars. Every now and then I would ask my crit partners if a scenario (mainly regarding different planets) made sense or was it even plausible and the answer would be, “this is your imagination, if it makes sense to you it’ll make sense to us.”

Tell us about your upcoming releases?

Dangerously Mine is a story about finding love and a new life after a catastrophic event. Because this is a sci-fi story the catastrophic event just so happens to be an alien invasion. This is not a story where she’s plucked from her bedroom by a hunky alien who wants her to be his life mate. Eva has gone through a lot, she’s seen loved ones murdered and she’s been plucked away from Earth as the alien invaders rain devastation all around her. She’s lost her closest friend (someone she has promised to take care of) and she’s sold into slavery. By the time I introduce Taio (her hero) I want the readers to be rooting for her. Now mind you, the readers are going to have to keep rooting for them because they’re both bull-headed characters who don’t know a good thing if it smacks them in the face.

What are you working on at the moment?

I finished the follow-up book to Dangerously Mine. I just have to clean it up some. In this book we learn more about Princess Sa’Mya who is a character introduced in Dangerously Mine and why she’s such a bitch, but we also get to meet Kane. I love Kane and Sa’Mya together. I think he’s the perfect guy for her. I can’t wait to release this on the masses.

What do you like best about being a writer?  What do you like least?

I love having the opportunity and outlet to create different characters and different worlds. In my mind there’s nothing better than being able to put my imagination to pen and paper. In saying that, as a writer you put yourself out there. I understand that not everyone is going to ‘get’ me and that’s ok. But it would be awesome if everyone did, then I could rule the world (just kidding, sorta).

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not writing?

I love reading. I’m a reader first and writer second. I haven’t been able to read that much this past year but that hasn’t stopped me from buying books. I’m 20+ books behind right now. As soon as I can stop my characters from invading my head, I’ll knock some of those books off of my ‘to be read’ list.

Of all of the characters you’ve created, who is your favorite and why?

They’re like my children so I can’t just claim one. But if I had too…I love Eva from Dangerously Mine. I kinda worked her in the second book that I finished and the third book that I’m working on. She’ll always have a special place in my heart.

Do you find it difficult to keep love/sex scenes fresh and interesting?

I’m working on my third book and so far I haven’t come across that issue. When it comes to sex my characters have a mind of their own. So far, my new characters are avoiding the bed and its ok with me.

What genre of books least appeals to you and why?

I can’t read anything too serious, like inspirational books (yuck).

Do you listen to music when you write or do you need quiet?

I don’t really listen to music while I’m writing. I do watch or have the television going most times.

What makes a man sexy?

I love a man’s walk. The way his clothes fit him. Sometimes a look will even send me over the edge. But I think most importantly a sense of humor is sexy.

Do your family and friends know you write erotic romance – if so, how have they reacted?

All of my family and a select few of my friends know. I come from a very cool and open family. My mother is really proud and excited for me (she loves me). My grandmother wanted to buy my book for her sister. I think I hurt her feelings when I told her absolutely not. I told her it’s an erotic romance and she couldn’t read it, ever. Ever, ever.

What’s your favorite food?

Macaroni and cheese (ummm…)

Do you have any bad habits?

I don’t think so. I’m not really consistently bad. I’m just bad.

If you were stranded on a desert isle, what five things would you want to have with you?

My hubby, three kids and a knife for hunting. We’d be fine. I’d whittle us some spears.

Do you have any pet peeves?

Way too many to mention here. People with hangnails top that list and it only gets worse…

What do you like about where you live?

I’ve lived in different parts of the country and although I hate the winter, I love my home state. We are a great bunch of open minded people with our own special gripes, but I think if it was us against another state, say against Ohio or Indiana, we would mob them. Yeah, we’re feisty northerners.

If you could travel back in time, would you? If so, what time period would you visit and why?

Uh, no. I like the comforts of hot water, microwaves, technology and adequate healthcare.

What’s the best book you’ve read lately?

I read The Darkest Seduction by Gena Showalter and now I’m totally hooked on that series. I also discovered Nalini Singh not too long ago. Archangel’s Blood made me a forever loyalist.

What was your favorite childhood storybook?

I can’t ever remember reading anything fun when I was younger. Odd.

Pirate of ninja?

Ninja baby. In my head I’m skinny, wearing all black and can scale walls.

Coffee or tea?

Coffee with lots of cream and sugar.

Angel or Spike?

Angel. Spike wasn’t all that cute. He reminded me of a bad Billy Idol imitation.

Mal or The Doctor?


Print book or ebook?


You can find A.M. Griffin at the links below. Be sure to check her awesome self out! Following the links are the blurb and excerpt for Dangerously Mine.

Dangerously Mine
Dangerously Mine Book Trailer
Orangey and Purple Promo Video 


After aliens invade and conquer Earth, Eva is transported to a distant slave trading planet. Escape and freedom are her only priority, but none of her martial arts training prepared her for what she faces. She finds herself enslaved to the warrior King Taio. Eva’s drawn to this sexy alien male who ignites her heart and body.

Taio is disgusted with the idea of owning a slave—until now. From the moment he sees her, he knows Eva is his for the taking. Torn between lust and duty, Taio knows nothing will stop him from protecting his little warrior.


Eva pressed her face against the rectangular window in the training room, watching the lights of unknown origin whiz by. She stood in one of the training rooms Ship had sequestered for her. After lunch, she felt more than a little stir-crazy. She needed to work off some of the tension that coiled around her muscles. It took all her strength not to get up and leave the dining hall while Taio’s gaze bored through her back. Did he really have to keep sending those smoldering looks her way?
His lavender eyes locked on her whenever she entered a room. The intensity of his gaze made her body respond in a way that she didn’t want it to. No one would ever consider her to be a coward. But there was something about the way he looked at her that had her frightened.
And that tattoo on his face. Sometimes it intrigued her and other times it made her scared. Who would allow such an intricate drawing to be completed? The pain alone would have been enough to deter any sane person from getting it, alien or not.
His body was a whole different story. It was downright criminal to have a body like his. The man had a body that would make a nun want to sin. He was tall, unbelievably so, but he was all rippling muscle.
This vessel was full of men and the only one who would give her a second glance was Taio. The thought should have given her some type of comfort. Instead of beating off twenty men, there was only one she would have to worry about. There was no mistaking his intentions. Every time he looked her way, it was as if he were willing her clothes to fall from her body. Her only counterattack so far was to stay away from him.
But she did have to agree with Ship, being under the care of Taio was for the best right now. She was fed, the dining hall was open around the clock, which was a plus. Oftentimes she found herself standing in front of the computer, requesting the buro flank with nitlick soup after everyone else was fast asleep. These were the closest thing to Earth food she could find. They had the same taste as chicken and tomato soup.
She was finally clean. Although she would have loved to feel the caress of running water on her skin again, the ionized shower hit the spot. She had clothes, which, although they were tight, were at least clean. And most of all, she didn’t feel her safety was in any type of jeopardy, not at the moment.
She wanted to find Ally, but she had to face the hard facts.
She was far away from home.
In an alien world.
No money whatsoever.
Nowhere to go.
And alone.
Finally, pulling herself away from the window, she pulled a training bag from the corner to start her workout. Hand-to-hand combat always made her feel primal, the main reason she loved it so much.
Within minutes, her training suit clung to her body, the lightweight material not constricting her movements at all. Perspiration covered her from head to toe, her once tied-back hair hanging wet and loose around her. Her muscles thrived under the workout, coming alive once again.
Heavy breathing behind her caught her off guard. She flipped away, landing in a fighting stance facing the intruder.
Taio stood in the doorway, watching. He gave a curt nod her way, the acknowledgement doing nothing to make her feel relaxed.
“You have good skills, Eva.” He hooked his thumbs in the waist of his pants and leaned on the doorway.
Her name never sounded better.
“Thank you.” She relaxed and straightened, her eyes still watching him. This was his first time speaking to her since their ill-fated first encounter.
She didn’t dare move closer, especially since she still didn’t know his intentions. She didn’t move away either, fearing he would view that as a sign of weakness. So she stood her ground, her body betraying her in the worst way. Her heart sped up a little and her breathing became more labored. Now she found her nipples hardening as her name rolled off his tongue.
I know trouble when I see it.
Eva willed her body to fight against whatever “mojo” he was throwing at her.
Taio walked into the room and took a sword off a rack on the wall. He began flexing it, testing its weight. The gesture caused his arm and chest muscles to ripple with each movement.
“Who taught you fighting moves?” he asked.
“My sensei, he lived back home.”
“Earth,” he said as a statement, rather than a question.
“Yes, Earth. Ann Arbor, Michigan, more specifically.”
She eyed the weapons on the wall. She was trained to use various fighting weapons—sais, kamas, knives, nunchakus, bo staffs and swords. She could show him a thing a two.
She walked over to the rack and took another sword off the wall.
It weighed a ton! No wonder he smirked when she picked it up. Even though she strained to hold it in both hands, she made sure not to let him know. She would give anything to smack that look right off his face. Instead, she concentrated hard on not dropping the sword. She wouldn’t give him the satisfaction. She dared not try to maneuver it as he had.
“A male taught you?” He sounded surprised.
“Yes. Thirteen Earth years of training.” Taio laughed and shook his head in disbelief. “It’s not unusual on my planet,” she said. “A male can teach a female how to fight or even a female can teach a male.”
He laughed harder and shook his head. “There could never be such a thing on my world.”
She turned away. “I earned a black belt, first Dan in Kyokushin Karate. On Earth I’m considered to be a great fighter.”
“Your people did not fare well in the war against the Loconuist. The fighting techniques of your species mean nothing to me.”
If the sword in her hands wasn’t so heavy, she would have swung it at him.
“We didn’t know how to fight them. We’d never encountered aliens before.”
“Then it is good that I will take care of you from now on.”
Her head snapped around. “I don’t need you to take care of me.”
“You were captured by the Loconuist and the Tresdonians almost killed you.”
She shrugged. “But they didn’t.”
He smirked. “Because I saved you.”
“Thanks, but I can take care of myself.”
“It doesn’t matter. You are my responsibility now. You are my slave.”
Her eyes, squinting and cold, fixed on his. “Ship told me those assholes on that planet gave me to you. I think you got cheated. I’m not a slave. Not yours or anyone else’s.”
“If this arrangement does not suit you, I could turn the vessel around and give you back to the Tresdonians.” He turned from her and put the heavy sword back on the wall rack.
Her heart began pounding in her chest. He wouldn’t… “No. I’m not going back there.” She held her sword tightly in her grasp.
“Then you are my slave.” He stalked slowly toward her. His eyes locked on hers.
“No.” She backed away from him.
This cannot happen.
“You are mine.” He took another step toward her. “You will need to get used to the idea.”
He stopped his advancement. They stood facing each other. Her breathing came out in deep and heavy breaths. Her heart thumped in her chest.
Abruptly, he turned and walked from the room. She blinked at the empty doorway. The cold surface of the wall was against her back. She held the sword close to her chest, shielding her body. She stayed there until her arms shook from the sword’s weight.
She was no one’s slave.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

My Next Big Thing

I've been asked by the lovely Lacey Thorn to take part in the Next Big Thing blog hop - so I'll be answering a few questions about my WIP, and I've tagged a few more authors to do the same. You can see their posts next week Wednesday.

What is the working title of your next book?

Romany Nights: Gypsy Wolf.

Where did the idea come from for the book?

I’ve been fascinated with gypsies ever since I was a little girl, and I’ve always wanted to write a historical gypsy story – adding shifters seemed like a natural step.

What genre does your book fall under?

Historical, Erotic Romance and Shape-shifter…I like to cover all my bases. ;)

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

Definitely Colin O’Donohue and Sophia Myles – they’re perfect for Misha and Catherine.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your books?

In the course of escaping from a betrothal she doesn’t want, Lady Catherine of Wiltshire falls into the arms of Misha, a wandering gypsy with a dangerous secret.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

It will be published by Resplendence Publishing.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

I’m still working on it, so...lemme get back to you on that.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

Bride of the Wolf by Abigail Barnette and Coyote Law by Kris Norris.

Who or What inspired you to write this book?

My favorite stories involve the magical world colliding with the mundane. Typically, the stories I write are contemporary paranormal, but I really wanted to do a paranormal historical. Add in gypsies and shifters and it was a premise I couldn’t pass up.  

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

Let’s see…it’s the beginning of a brand new series that’s full of breathless romance, adventure and a whole new cast of characters to fall in love with.

Here are some wonderful authors I’ve tagged to tell you about their Next Big Thing! Visit them on December 19th and see what’s coming up for them.

Jennifer Armintrout
Anya Breton
C.L. Raven 
Mara Jacobs 
Dena Garson

Thursday, December 6, 2012

The Day I'm Having

I'm apparently having *that* day.

Before I share my tale of woe, I have to tell you what I've been doing the last couple weeks.

I've been volunteering at my son Corwin's school to help out the art teacher with her pottery unit. With 4 classes and 30 kids per class, it's tough for one person to help a room full of teenagers with all the issues with hand building and joining and glazing. This is where I came in. I'd made a joke at parent teacher conferences about crashing her pottery unit and she said that she'd love it if I did. Well, I took her up on it and helped out in almost every session. I had a blast. The kids are great and there's some definite talent in there. The teacher gave me 25 pounds of clay to take home, so I ended up making a ton of Christmas presents and had a lovely, relaxing time while I did it. 

This week, the pieces are out of the kiln and we've been glazing. Today was my day to oversee the kids who still weren't done yet while the teacher moved on to the still life lesson with the kids that were. While I was in the back of the room with the kids who were finishing up, I worked on another project. A project that involved a vat of acrylic adhesive. While we were cleaning up, I dropped the damn thing.

The container hit the ground and the contents splattered EVERYWHERE. Seriously, that shit flew 15 feet - plastered me, a girl who was talking to me, the table, the floor, the wall. It. Was. Everywhere.

I felt like a total ass. Luckily, the teacher thought it was hilarious. We got it cleaned up, but I'm still picking crusty glue out of my hair.

The day started with me spilling essential oil on my couch. The couch that isn't even a year old yet.

Then after school, Corwin and I stopped by 7-11 to get eggs. (Yes, I got eggs at the convenience store. I was tired.) Corwin asked for a Gatorade, so I decided to bring home a pop for Killian.

Guess who dropped the damn thing on the floor.

Guess whose legs are still sticky.'s that day.