Borrowed Time

untitled (5)
We are on borrowed time.

While we know it, we may not always live like we know it.

And sadly, sometimes, it takes an awakening to realize that we may not be living life to our full potential.

I thought I was?  Realized I wasn’t.

My plan on New Year’s Eve night just before midnight was to post the inspiring, motivating, uplifting words that swirled in my head for days prior.  It is the first year in my whole adult life that I have felt hopeful coming into a new year.

This is huge.

And there was something in the air because others around me were saying the same thing. This next yea felt something big. For a lot of people.

I had plans to sail into 2016 with.  And back to the blog, had hopes to share with someone reading it the aura of the light feeling of the new year and to hopefully give the same motivation to someone that was passed onto me.

Being at work and lucky enough for downtime, the keys on my laptop clicking away.

About one hour before midnight, while awaiting the clock to strike twelve, the soon-to-be loss of a life way too soon came to be news.  A man who did not get a fair chance at life and sitting next to me was this man’s beloved brother, and in that moment my whole mindset and coming into 2016 changed.

I realized my father was right. He has always said his senior year motto, “Time stops for no man,” and in this moment I realized life still went on, bad things still happened, there was no starting the new year celebrating and happy for everyone.

Time stops for no man. And we are on borrowed time.

NYE was no longer celebratory but instead reflective. And my heart hurt for everyone involved.  Watching the ball drop and the musicians singing in Times Square across the television, while it was still hopeful, still jovial, I realized what I already knew.

Life is short.  I have always known that.  I also have always lived thinking it.  But can I say I always lived it?

No.

The message has REVERBERATED over and over since that night.  My inspiring blog post was not finished.  I still have yet to finish it and it will be post #2 of 2016.

Now as the days have passed, the first week of 2016 come and gone, I can see clearly again.  Life has been reevaluated, the first goals of 2016 have been changed, grieving has started for the family who lost, and I am grateful.

Thank you 2015, you have inspired and challenged me to live a life worthy of my calling.

I share what I know: Don’t wait to start your dreams: there may be no tomorrow.  Don’t live in the future; live in the here-and-now.

I realized the way we live our lives allows us to honor those of us who left us too soon.

As we are all here on borrowed time.

images3J4CX5H8

(Stevie: This post is dedicated to you. Thanks for the car talks.  I will think of you every time I see an old Camaro now. Watch over your lovely family and thank you for the lessons you taught me this New Year’s Eve.  I will honor your life through the lessons you brought me in the yesterdays and this night. Go do all the things you have not been able to do this past decade. You may not have been yourself for so long, but you are able to be you again. And you leave your mark here. Go live the life you should have had.)

 

 

Writer —> Author = Humbled

little-girl-typewriter-300x198

Life has been surreal beyond belief the past few weeks.  I am in a transition period of being a writer to becoming an author.

I never in a million years thought this was possible and I am thankful and grateful.  And HUMBLED tenfold.

My first book debuted last night on Amazon in paperback and for the Kindle.  I am a published true crime author.

What?

Having just worked on the starts of my Amazon author page and creating an email to my dear family and friends, it is like an outer body experience, weird yet exciting.  It has been quite a journey since signing the book contract on April 25, 2015.

A journey of lows (computer crashing losing much twice, inability to locate information) to highs (kept writing, sobs when hit the send button to publisher, seeing the cover created) and all in between.  It was one of the hardest processes for me.

I am very certain I did not do this process correctly, but just like me,  politically incorrect, doing things jumbled (which I define as “my way”), doing things without researching how.  I may change the way I write a book next time but I would not change a thing if I could go back.  It was an experience that when I think about the past six months, I shake my head.  But I am smiling as I shake my head.

Sitting here, on the verge of a little emotional, it is crazy to see how one evolves over their lifetime.  I guess some people actually take their passions from childhood and carry them through life.  I really never expected this to be me.

The little girl writer in me I guess is still there.53184485

I have been a writer my whole life.  My first big memory of writing was as a kid typing the words of a book I was reading.  I typed several paragraph onto a now decorated white slab of paper titled, “Chapter 1” and told my mom, “Look I am writing a book!”

Well, of course, she realized I typed it right from the book that was perched next to the typewriter.  I still remember it, a purple cover about a young girl facing adversity.

Interesting and ironic enough now looking back…

Anyways, my mother calmly looked at me, calling me on my lie, and said, “You did not write this.  That is someone else’s work. She worked hard writing that book and that is not for you to take away from.”  She returned to her work and I returned to reading.  My mom had a way of teaching me with life lessons, more than one at a time.  I learned about lying and about work ethic in that moment.

I remember writing plays in the 4th grade.  I remember a play my mom helped me write in 5th grade.  We were studying rocks and my mom helped me with ideas; she was more excited than I was.  I remember we were cooking a holiday meal in the kitchen and I was standing on a chair to help her prep food on the kitchen counter.  We created  Limey the Limestone rock and Sadie the Sedimentary rock.  I will tell you I remember my rocks today because of the passion my mom had in writing this play.

I remember a holiday gift of my own typewriter so I did not have use my parents’ one anymore.  I remember in the 8th grade writing a story that I wanted to turn into a novel.  I have pages of stuff I’ve written from childhood to college and beyond in a huge notebook today.

There is something about writing that gives me a sense of peace.  It is where I belong. Maybe it ties me to my mom since she was involved in my early love of writing. There are only a few things that really give me this feeling and it’s almost like a high.

I get a high from writing.

I hope someone takes something away from my many capacities of writing whether it be something they can apply to their life, a life lesson, just being an escape or in learning facts.

Writing is one of the hardest things but most satisfying things I have ever done.  For some people, it comes easy.  I will say it comes natural for me, but it is never easy.  I have probably wasted out on such potential and some brilliant work because I have sat back awaiting the feel of the zone before writing.

I have learned you cannot wait.  You sit down and write and it will come.  It is like the Field of Dreams statement, “If you build it, he will come” which I change to “If you build it, they will come.”  They meaning the words that hit the page.

I want to thank my dear inner circle who stood by my side during the creation of my book.  The undying support and the words that kept me calm in the freak out texting moments when I lost thousands of words from the laptop crashing, from the tablet overheating and blacking out thinking I lost the whole document, and for the “way to go” as my word count goal began dwindling each time I sat down and scribed.

If anything, use me as an example.  Follow your dreams.  If you’ve been scared, fight your fears.  I was as scared as I could be.  Just go out there and do what you want.  You can do it.  Make the end of 2015 the time you promise yourself to step outside your comfort zone and kick ass while doing something you have always wanted to do.  If I can do it, so can you.  You got this.  I got your back.

Thank you for believing I could do this as I followed my dreams.  {humbled!}

Now, go follow yours.

u13766668

Interview with Erotica Author: Logan Black

TheMoneyShot_smallMiss Logan is an author.

She brings wicked sex and whodunit mystery to the written page.

Erotica with a side of murder, her website’s tagline says.

Logan just plain kicks ass.  A woman who does it all – a wife,  a mother and a business professional.  She’s finance by day, sex vixen by night.  Logan possesses a sense of humor and a rawness that radiates invigorating.  And her writing grabs you from the very first sentence. Literally.

Logan describes her writing as being far from erotica romance; her writing about sex and crime covers, “all the base emotions that happen in between – greed, jealousy, wrath, lust.  Always lust.”

Doesn’t that just intrigue you?  It does me!

Her first book The Money Shot: A Danny Diamond Erotic Mystery debuted on Kindle last week for its surprise launch!  And it is a must read.  The paperbook launch is January 15, 2016.

Because I have been working hard and am at the tail end of finishing my true crime book, I  have not been reading as much as I would like… but I have started The Money Shot and Logan delivers!

I actually started The Money Shot on an airplane. The mystery had me at the edge of my seat.  And the sex did too!  Something about starting an erotica book on an airplane… had I not been flying solo this trip, it would have been a mile high club flight, no question about that.

What I love about Logan’s writing, aside from her alluring writing style,  is she writes 1940’s Noir.  I think I was born in the wrong era.  I should have lived in the 1940’s since I am intrigued by the time, the cars, the fashion, the hats and the shoes, the seduction of vintage glamour.  Anachronism…Logan and I share this in common.

images-5

I had the honor to interview Logan Black and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Q: When did you become a writer?

LB: I was 8, I think. My Little Pony didn’t tell the exact stories I wanted to see, so I decided to write my own. If I remember correctly, mine were a bit grimmer. I think I killed off Starlight. That bitch had to go.

Q: What made you desire to write erotica?

LB: Well…sex is fun, right? So writing about sex should be fun too. At least, that was my thought process initially. And it was fun for sure, but it was also hard. Writing about sex utilizes all the same basic skills as other types of writing, but there’s a big learning curve for all the other bits. Stuff like learning how to be sensual without telegraphing too much, or getting the right diction down, or learning how to walk the line between erotica and porn. You go into it thinking, “Sure, I could do that,” and then wind up thinking, “How the fuck did I get myself into this mess? Who am I, and what have I done with my pants?”

Or maybe that was just the tequila.

A less flippant answer is that when I was 11 or 12 I found an old erotica paperback at my grandmother’s house. I didn’t know exactly what I’d found, but I did know that reading it made me want to touch myself, and that was FUCKING AWESOME. I’d been writing the My Little Pony murder porn from an early age (see question 1 above), so it wasn’t that big of a stretch to move into actual porn. Though that didn’t happen until much later.

Q: Tell us about The Money Shot.

LB: The Money Shot can be best described as “Film Noir erotica.” Think about the old Film Noir classics from the 40s and 50s–Double Indemnity, Sunset Boulevard, The Big Sleep, Night and the City. Now throw in a heaping helping of explicit, kinky sexsex, and you’ve pretty much got the gist of The Money Shot.

But just in case you need a little more detail, here’s the book blurb:

“When your partner is murdered, you’re supposed to do something about it–even if he is a useless drunk. But for private detective Danny Diamond, it’s a little more complicated than that. He’s been sleeping with his partner’s wife.

The womanizing detective is a ready-made fall guy for the murder. To make matters worse, the new widow thinks they’re an item now. His secretary is full of “I told you so’s,” the police are knocking on his door, and a vicious pornographer is convinced Diamond has a set of negatives he’s never even heard of.

The key to unraveling the mystery and saving his own neck lies with his newest client, the beautiful heiress Patricia Carlyle. Patricia is dark and mysterious, the attraction between them electric. She knows far more about sex than any upstanding rich girl should, but is it just a smokescreen hiding an even more disturbing secret, or is she the genuine article?

The detective who swore he’d never be tied down to one woman finds himself ensnared by the heiress’s many talents. But if he lets his libido do the thinking for him, he may not make it out of this one alive. As he digs past the glitzy veneer of post-WWII Los Angeles, he uncovers a sordid world of sex, lies and greed–and with it, a “money shot” worth killing for.”

Q: What gave you the idea for this backdrop?

LB: 7 or 8 years ago I was on a bit of a Noir binge, reading as many of the old classics as I could get my hands on–Raymond Chandler and Dashiell Hammett, mostly. In the midst of reading The Maltese Falcon I was struck with just how sexy and brazen the whole thing is. So much sex and depravity lurks just beneath the surface of the text, either in the “fade to black” scenes or in the subtext of what is said. To me, it was just begging for an erotica treatment.

The book initially started as an erotic retelling of The Maltese Falcon, but then it morphed into a story of its own. Noir fans will notice that there are a lot of similarities, especially early on, but The Money Shot comes into its own shortly thereafter.

Q: Do you have a favorite character out of the book and why?

LB: My favorite character is Eileen, Diamond’s secretary. She’s foul-mouthed and spunky, and she doesn’t take any of his shit. Well, most of the time, anyway. I think I identify with her the most because 1) her personality is a lot like mine, and 2) she’s a young woman trying to find own way in an era that did not encourage such things in young women. I dig that.

Eileen is also my mea culpa to the female readership out there. The protagonist (Diamond) is an asshole and a misogynist, but I didn’t feel that I could write the story any other way due to the setting and the Noir overtones. It had to be a male protagonist, and he couldn’t be a soft, sensitive guy. Eileen is a foil to him in many ways, and a breath of fresh air.

I’m actually thinking of doing some stories or part of a novel from her POV, but that’s way in the future.

Q: Why 1940’s noir? And what made you interested in writing crime mysteries?

LB: Because I was tired of the same old rehashed erotic romance plots. Not all the sex out there is the “happily ever after” variety. Sometimes (a lot of the time), it’s intensely unhealthy–obsessive or damaging even. And that can be sexy as hell. An element of danger always makes sex more exciting, right? So let’s throw in a murder plot and make it really dangerous while we’re at it.

It’s also fun to take an idealized era of American history, peel back the veneer of mom, apple pie, and wholesome boys and girls, and dig into the dark underbelly of sin, greed, and lust that lurks beneath. The HEA (happily ever after) is a pipe dream, and Noir gives me the chance to explore the other side of that coin.

Q: Any projects in the works right now? What is your next book?

LB: The only project I have now is getting this book launched. The ebook “soft” launch has already happened, but the big go-live happens January 15, 2016. There’s a lot of work to be done until then, and my day job and family don’t give me a lot of free time.

But after that, I have ideas for a prequel, a sequel, and some short stories I’d like to work on. Maybe I’ll work on cooking up another kid too? We’ll just have to see.

Q: As an erotica writer, what are you hopes for your readers to take out of your erotica novels?

LB: First and foremost, I hope people will get off on it. I mean, that’s why we read erotica rather than other non-sexual books, right? We want a cheap thrill. So if my work can help them achieve that, then I’m a happy girl. If my writing can get someone laid? Even better. I know it’s gotten me laid by the hubs more than once, LOL.

But beyond that, I would love it if The Money Shot introduced a few readers to the classic Noir authors like Hammett and Chandler and MacDonald. When I love something, I want to share it with others, and Noir is no exception.

Q: What advice s a woman would you give your younger self about sex and womanhood?

LB: Get a good vibrator and cherish it!

Haha, I’m kidding. Well, not really. A good vibrator is a must. It would definitely be in my zombie apocalypse survival kit. But seriously, I would tell my younger self to keep an open mind about sexuality and to actively explore more. When I was younger, I was a lot more closed off than I am now. Using the vibrator example, I hadn’t even used one until my husband bought me one for our honeymoon (I know, right? For shame!).

For so long I was afraid to let my freak flag fly. Once I figured out how to do that, I wished I’d done it out sooner. Life is too short to not live it fully and authentically. Once I figured out what “authentic” was for me and actually did it, I can’t tell you how much happier I was in my own skin. My writing is an outgrowth of that, but it encompasses so much more. I look back on the time I wasted trying when I was younger, and I have to shake my head. But then again, there are some truths that no one can tell you. You just have to figure them out on your own.

Q: How can readers find you and read more about you and your work thus far?

LB: You can find me on my website, http://www.authorloganblack.com. I have Facebook and Goodreads accounts, but your best bet is to hook up with me on Twitter @loganblackauthr. That’s my social media platform of choice, and I’m on there just about every day. Oh, and if you’d like to check out The Money Shot, you can get a copy over on Amazon.

It was a dark and stormy night…

Awakened by pouring ass rain in the still of the night.

It was a dark and stormy night.images-4What a shock to be jolted out of a sound sleep especially because I had no idea it was going to rain.  And since we have been in such a severe drought, I cannot even remember the last time I heard rain, let alone like this.

The raindrops were battering on the roof and pelting on the sidewalk .  Instantly I jumped up to look outside, then got back in bed and listened…and listened.

 

Not sure why, heard rain hundreds of times over my lifetime, but it always finds me in awe, always in amazement.  Something about how the sound of rain is so calming and makes you want to listen.  I did not hear rain inside of a home until I was ten years old.  It still is music to my ears.

Only bad thing about this rainstorm was I had been on stage with three others at a Tim McGraw concert and the show was just seconds into beginning.  The concert stage was on hydraulics and we just cleared underground and were now in front of infinite people in the open air of the night darkness, bright lights shining everywhere.

I had been selected as one of those few to entertain along side Tim due to my vocal abilities…err, yeah, that was definitely a dream since I can crack glass! The message of the dream as I stood there was about taking opportunities and risks and doing things not in my comfort zone and that I was going to do just fine.

I am not sure as to what in my life that dream was a message of or what it was referring to.  I lay listening to the steady cadence of the rain thinking about the message.  I did not get to live out that once-in-a-lifetime opportunity via that dream but heard the message loud and clear.

I wonder how many are lying awake in bed right now, thunder and lighting tearing through the sky.  What an amazing sense of wonder, act of nature, and beauty of the weather.  I wonder if anyone else’s dreams were interrupted as they were jolted awake.  And if they are laying there listening to the rain thinking about their dreams.

9JEXI8ECJY

As the lighted keys on the laptop click away in the dark, it sounds like the rainstorm may be at its end for now.  I no longer hear the rhythm of the falling rain.  Or the thunder.  Gone, like that.

The message of this storm was even at the least opportune times waking up from a good dream and losing out on much needed sleep, the 2 o’clock hour offered one of those little things in life where the awe and beauty of nature and the way it makes you feel is way more powerful than anything else.

Ultimate living in the moment experience, using my senses and just taking it in.  Some people feel the rain, others just get wet.

Oh, one more very distant rumble of thunder in the far away sky.  Confirmation: the dark and stormy night has moved on.

All those awake in bed can now return to slumber, once again, in the still of the night.images-7

I wonder if Tim McGraw’s She’s My Kind of Rain was on the playlist for our concert singing.

Finding Life’s Purpose or Already There?

I’ve said many a time in this life, that I am attempting to find my purpose.  I sometimes feel like I am right where I am supposed to be and sometimes I feel there is something more.

Many times I am searching.

I feel I can help people or am destined to help people.  Sometimes I feel like I could be a motivational speaker to help someone step outside their comfort zone as I have done.  Sometimes I think I have a story to tell and sometimes I think accomplishing as much as I have with a disability can be inspiration to someone out there.

Texting with my work partner today, I had not only my eyes opened but my life altered.  Sometimes words can just be a blessing.

He wrote, “As to greater things and purpose, I’ll get deep for a moment.  Here’s my life philosophy regarding its purpose. There really isn’t one. Not in the sense of a singular definable purpose. The real purpose of life is to just live it. The key to happiness is in how you live it. Not profound or unusual, right? But here’s the thing I think a lot of people get wrong. They search for something. Some goal or purpose that makes them feel better. The true key to being happy with HOW you deal and live in every moment. In everyday average life. You have a profound effect on every person you meet and interact with. Realizing that can help you to realize that searching for one distinct “bigger than you” purpose is fruitless. You’re not “less than” someone else who may have done something you had aspired to, but failed to attain. And stop thinking of the word failed as a bad thing. In fact, quit using the word. You either do, or you don’t. That simple. Life is simply living as long as you can. And enjoying as many of the moments that you can. Making choices that you can stand behind. Everything else, is just a part of the path of life.”

So in the midst of a life altering moment for me, I was also surprised in myself.  Half of what he said is how I live my life everyday.  This blog contests to my importance of living in the moment, being positive, working towards dreams, just living life each and every day. I have been saying this for years now.

How in the world did I preach that and live that but not even realize that in itself, this can be the purpose of life?

I realized in the moment of reading this text, that I found relief that I could just be. This week I had been really searching as to where I am headed and thinking about retirement planning.  Thinking means having to have a plan for when this time arrives. I was not finding any answers and became confused. I have been tying my life’s purpose into what my second career and retirement days could be filled with.

Yesterday speaking with a coworker who has done numerous tours of duty to the desert, having asked to leave his family and go to Afghanistan by choice to serve yet again, I told him, “I do not regret anything in my life except not deciding I wanted to sign up for the National Guard until it was too late because of my age.”  He told me that there is a possibility that my age may be able to be waived which means I could still live out my ultimate dream in this world.  He said he would have an answer for me in one day.

Holy shit!

I realized after I spent an hour on the ultimate adrenaline high that this may very well be possible. I thought about how drastic my life would change and that it is everything I want.

I also realized it could be too good to be true and that this would not be possible. Secretly I felt this to be the case, but still felt the high of my purpose, thinking maybe I found it: to serve my country.

There is something about my life I cannot explain. I think in a past life I was a military officer. It is something I feel in my soul. I cannot explain it. I sometimes do not even always understand it.

But as the adrenaline wore off, I had a feeling my life would be remaining as it is. I found as I was trying to concentrate at work that I was again in search, big time, for my purpose. If it was not to become a member of our Armed Forces, I needed another purpose.

Then after reading this text, I realized I needed to stand down.

Continue on… just living.

Regardless of the answer I receive today.

Just living.

Don’t Forget to Live in the Moment

Have you ever been in an amazing, beautiful place which is breathtaking and something you would define as heaven, but you’re not fully living in the moment?
images-10I recently was in Cabo San Lucas and it took my breath away. The beauty of the Gulf of Mexico, the sunshine, free drinks, sandy beaches, and no time restraints just whispered paradise.

But I noticed at times I reverted back to normal life wondering about the house, work, the to do lists.  Sometimes spending a week away can seem like you’re ready to go home even if you’re enjoying yourself.

I remember thinking I should not be thinking about this stuff.  Is it part of being an adult?  You watch the kids in the pool and know they have no cares in the world.  Maybe I was not drinking enough alcohol.  But all I know is now that I am back, I sure wished I had lived in the moment every second I was there.

So, to those of you experiencing summer vacations and getaways, use that time to really really live.  Live in the sunshine.  Live in the smell of suntan lotion.  Live in the peacefulness. Live in the sound of the ocean crashing on the shore. Live in the power of your dreams.  Just live.

That’s what summertime is for.

Don’t let anything steal summer vacation.

Don’t think about anything on the home front.  You will be back there soon enough. Everything will still be there as you left it. It is waiting for you.

You’ll be back there soon enough and then you will wish you were back on vacation.  I wish I was in Cabo this VERY second.

So just live.

Enjoy.

Ponder.  Reflect.

And take another sip of that icy cold beer on that hot summer day.

Cheers to living life!

The Magic of Music

I love music.

MUSIC2Music is a big part of my life.

I listen daily.  I work out to music every single workout.  I go for walks with music.  I clean house to music.  I never drive with the radio silent.  I listen to music at my desk at work.

There is always music that makes you move your head to, tap your foot to, dance to, songs you learn lyrics to, songs that remind you of something or someone, songs of things you want to do or experience, or songs that takes you back to the past.

But every once in awhile there comes along a song, that strikes a chord.  A chord down to your core.  A chord so deep that no other songs compare.

A song that actually transports you out of this world to another world.  Right out of reality and to some place else.

A song that makes your eyes see something that is only mind made up.  It gives you the emotions as if you are really there.

What makes a song do this?

Is it the melody?  The lyrics?  A connection with the song’s message?  All of the above?

Whatever it is, what an incredible feeling.  I got goose bumps tonight. And an image so real.

Maybe someday I can be transported for reals.  If not, the feeling when listening to this song is perfect enough.

I will gladly remain in this other world for a little while.

The magic of music is one beautiful thing. MUSIC4