Kenny Rogers and the Writer in Me

I grew up around music. I’d been singing most of my life. As you can see from this picture, my piano lessons (which didn’t quite take…too impatient) started early, too.

But music was the first art I was introduced to, and it’s what soothes my soul.

My passion, however, belongs to the written word. There’s something about telling a story whether by poetry or by prose that has always captivated my attention. It’s a world in which I have the patience and perseverance to study, to practice, to re-write (you know, the dread word–edit) until you have something of worth and beauty.

Although the first album I ever purchased was Michael Jackson’s Thriller (a classic, to be sure), it was Kenny Rogers who left an indelible mark on my life through his amazing voice and incredible skill at story telling.

The first song of Kenny’s that I recall hearing was The Gambler. The tale had intriguing characters, real life lessons, and a story you could actually see come alive if you closed your eyes. I. Was. In. Love.

Kenny spoke to the writer in me. He fired my imagination. He even made me look at music a bit differently. In fact, music actually features prominently in my writing style. While I can’t listen to it while I’m actually writing (I have a tendency to type whatever words I’m hearing), finding the right music before I start to write helps me effectively convey the correct mindset or emotion for my scene or characters.

For example, if I want to portray a heartless villainess? A song like this one (I’m a military brat, so you do a vet dirty, I’m gonna have issues) will put me in the right mindset to create a real bitch.

Or if I want to convey someone who’s had rough breaks in life, but has always done the right thing, but in his current crossroads, he has to play dirty to be the hero, I’d play something like this one, a personal favorite.

Or maybe the lovers are both dumbasses (because let’s be honest, that happens) and we need them to realize they’re about to lose everything, or maybe that they were never right for each other and it’s time to let go… This one fits the bill.

Or when I need to capture the heart of the relentless soul who dreams big and will find a way to make it happen…

And when my hero is headed the wrong direction and about to eff things up with the heroine because he’s so busy with the wrong things he takes her for granted? This song does it for me…

At the end of the day, it’s his poetry and lyricism that engaged the writer in me so strongly. He made you feel his songs, and they were so relatable.

In fact, in my latest release, A Way With Words, I shared several song lyrics I’d created exclusively for this release and can’t help but feel maybe his energy influenced me. Here’s a taste of one of them…

“Did you see me
Through the haze of desire
The passion and fire
That you shared with someone else,
Did you see me?

Was I stupid?
To believe in promises made,
The foundation we laid
When I gave you my ring.
Was I stupid?

Chorus:

Did your words mean so little
You could throw me away
Tell her you love her,
Worship her body
In the bed where we lay?
Was I so easy to betray?
I deserve more than this.

Will you realize
That my heart can be broken
I deserve more than token
Lies to make me stay, I won’t look away.
Will you realize?

Chorus:

Did your words mean so little
You could throw me away
Tell her you love her,
Worship her body
In the bed where we lay?
Was I so easy to betray?

I deserve more than this.
Did you lose me
Or did I find my rebirth?
Discover my self-worth
In walking away, not looking back
Yeah, I found me.

Chorus:

Did your words mean so little
You could throw me away
Tell her you love her,
Worship her body
In the bed where we lay?
Was I so easy to betray?
I deserve more than this.
Yeah, I found me.”

So I owe a huge debt of gratitude for all the joy and inspiration Kenny’s music has brought me “Through the Years.” (See what I did there?) LOL!

Who inspires you? Is it music? Movies? I’d love to know…

And to close out, I think it’s only fitting I share a song he did with one of his oldest, dearest friends… It’s like they knew. And besides, he felt like an old friend to me, too. Rest in Heaven, Kenny.

Happy Valentine’s Day! #BookSale #KUFree

It’s been an incredibly busy week. I got back from Chicago on Monday where we celebrated my amazing nephew’s birthday…

Then it was back to my daily grind…aka the day job that limits my writing time. Hubby, being the sexy, awesome romantic that he is bought me chocolate truffles and chocolate covered strawberries. He know me well…

I don’t need grand gestures. He shows me his love every day with the little things he does to let me know he loves me, supports me, and he listens.

But then I thought about you guys… My awesome loyal readers and friends… You guys deserve some Valentine’s Day appreciation, too! So I made my new book HALF OFF!

💞💞💞GO GET YOUR COPY! 💞💞💞

Check Out my Sexy, Sassy #CoverReveal!

I’m so lucky as an author and a person. I am surrounded by amazing people who believe in me and encourage me to chase my dreams. One of them is the incredible woman who designed this book from Laura Jean Designs. She’s brilliant with cover design and a pretty stellar author as well.

Now check out her amazing art! Is this not absolutely beautiful?

My lovely new book!

Blurb:

Kalina Santos went to Nashville to lick her wounds and regroup. A random encounter with a stranger leads her to adventure and a new career opportunity.

Country star, Drew Kendall, was jaded and worried about losing his band. The last thing he expected was to be intrigued by a brown-eyed beauty with no idea who he was.

Drew never intended to hurt his bandmate, Ty. But carelessness has consequences and some things can’t be undone.

One woman. Two bandmates. Will Kalina come between them, or is between them where she’s meant to be? If love is a song, what happens when the tune of your heart sounds more like a trio? Will outside forces generate discord and sharp notes, or can three unique souls blend to create the perfect harmony? You won’t want to miss a beat of this love ballad.

What do you guys think? Is it not absolutely gorgeous? Are you following me on my other platforms yet? Come join the fun! All are welcome and I love getting to know fellow book lovers! This book will be available VERY SOON!

Damn You, Dorian!

Hurricane weather can be hell on productivity.

First, I’m so excited to share with you all that I’ve completed writing my first full length novel (100K words) and that I’m in the pre-editing stages. Second, I’m thrilled to share that I had brunch with my editor today and I gave her a firm date with which to expect my finished product. This has me both excited and anxious as my deadline is mid September, just in time for my wedding anniversary.

The issue? This damn hurricane may make me late. The last hurricane that rolled up this way was Irma, and we lost power for nearly a week. That would put a huge crimp in my plans should history repeat itself. Icing on the cake? My current day job is in alarm dispatch monitoring. Natural disasters have a way of fucking with jobs like that…and we’re all on call in case an all-hands-on-deck situation occurs.

But this is the one getting to me… My beautiful senior fur baby, Izzy, somehow managed to injure a back paw and is now limping pretty heavily. Normally I’d just be worried about her anxiety in a storm, but now that she’s started taking doggie CBD (bacon flavored) that’s more of a non-issue. But the paw injury? Breaking my heart. So, with a hurricane bearing down, we have a vet appointment for her tomorrow.

And if you think I’m crazy to give her CBD tinctures for storm anxiety, consider watching this video of this afternoon’s storm (which isn’t even hurricane stuff yet). I know humans who would be anxious. Sorry in advance for the sideways video….

Arrogance Breeds Contempt #cockygate #ByeFaleena

If there’s one thing in the world I hate, it’s bullies and mean people.

This is a big world. And it’s hard. There is NO reason or excuse for being nasty or hurtful.

Having said that, I just had to speak out when I saw all the crap going down in the romance world.

Imagine the arrogance it must take for a person to copyright an everyday word and claim it for “branding” purposes. Imagine said author using the apparent inability of her fans to distinguish her works over other authors because they use the same word in the title. Then imagine this same author choosing to go after other authors with the word in their titles and basically serving them with cease and desist orders and threatening litigation.

Seriously?

And if you are/were her fan, how are you not offended? I mean:

  1. She basically called you stupid.
  2. She’s saying you can’t read well enough to recognize her name.
  3. She doesn’t think you’re capable of returning a book once you realize you’ve downloaded the wrong one.

All this, and you’re still willing to be her little monsters running around giving other people 1 star reviews because they have that word in their title or they have books whose characters share names with some of hers? Or if they’ve used the same stock photos in their book covers?

Seriously?

Put on your big girl panties and grow the eff up. You want to be big in this business? Do it by writing amazing books people can’t put down! Do it with class and respect for your peers. Don’t try to shut everyone else down in the hopes that you’ll be the only one left standing, and therefore “succeeding” by default. That’s just crappy.

And if you haven’t heard about this or you don’t know the word? Let Kid Rock educate you….

Yup!

In her ideal world, no one else is allowed to use “Cocky.”

Whew! She must be relieved Kid hadn’t already beat her to it, huh?

And you know what breaks my heart? Some hard working, classy authors have already changed their titles thanks to her strong arm tactics. Even though they have every right to the word.

This is one of those times when readers and writers need to band together to show that this behavior of hers is unacceptable. That trying to undermine other people’s careers and livelihoods is not ok and has not gone unnoticed. That these lesser known authors have our support!

Here’s a LINK to a petition to cancel the Cocky trademark.

One blog, Ana’s Attic Book Blog has already found a bunch of authors that could use a little Love via book buys. Check out her post here on Facebook! https://www.facebook.com/plugins/post.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fanasatticbookblog%2Fposts%2F975579679266933&width=500

And like her page while you’re at it.

If you want to better understand the situation and how utterly effed up it really is? Check out this very well done Article.

Biotch! You’ve gone too far.

You’re arrogant, not cocky.

Why?

Because, as Kid Rock says, “It ain’t braggin’, mother fucker, if you back it up.” And people who can back it up don’t need the down and dirty tricks that you pulled, chick.

Need proof? Here’s how talent backs it up.

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/post.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fchantel.seabrook%2Fposts%2F10216215325158677&width=500

That’s class.

What I feel for this stunt?

Contempt.

What do you guys think? Let me know in the comments. I’m randomly picking 5 people to give whichever Cocky book listed on Ana’s page that you’d like. Again, all you have to do is share your thoughts….whatever they may be.

Combustion

Hot,

the spell of

sweet whispered

words,

erotic magic,

pictures seared

into brain

seductive

as blazing fire

licks trails on

heated body.

Tongue,

designs the path

velvet lips follow,

soft glances,

biting nips

score across

damp, heated skin.

Nipples taut,

begging

for firm attention,

suckling moisture

to stinging throb,

caught

between ivory teeth;

No mercy.

Pressure expands,

pleasure follows,

led to the core

of destruction

and ecstasy.

Hard fingers

tease,

wet seductive proof

of deepening hunger,

gentle flicks,

firm pressure,

controlling hand,

shudders course through

body uncontrolled,

throb of desire

pulses to center of the universe,

tiny nub,

begging,

waiting

to detonate.

With one word….

….COME!

Righteous Indignation

Darkened soul;

You speak the language of hate,

Intolerance and throw away lives.

You coat your fear

In God,

Claim faith, love,

While spewing venom.

Evil,

Hidden in rosy words,

Claiming encouragement.

The snake living in Eden.

Do you see it?

YOU are the hand

The devil is using to write

His darkness.

You say you are Christian,

Believe in God

Then spread bigotry?

Do you not recall?

“Even the demons believe in God and shudder.”

Think long.

Think hard.

Ours is not to be

Judge, jury, and executioner.

He gave his only begotten son

For ALL of us.

Not just those you deem

Acceptable

In your flawed, human eyes.

The blood of the lamb

Flowed for everyone.

The imperfect,

To be made pure through HIM.

My God is LOVE.

Not sure who yours is….

I was out. Driving to get breakfast when I saw this sign at one of the busier cross streets in my neighborhood. It sickened me as much as it saddened me. I wanted to rush out and remove the sign, but my small car couldn’t accommodate, and I didn’t want to do anything that could get me in trouble, so I did the next best thing. I reported it to the police.

As a Christian it angered me and tore at my heart. Hiding behind supporting the police and God to spew hate? Despicable. So I did what I always do when emotions get the better of me. I wrote.

Because I had to make it clear that the God I worship doesn’t seem to have much in common with theirs. And more, he’s the only judge that matters.