W-E-L-C-O-M-E to my little corner of the planet. Take a seat, get comfy. You're among friends, so please feel free to comment. Thank you for stopping by and I hope you enjoy my ramblings. Be sure to scroll all the way down to get the daily puppy ~ they're so cute!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

A rare mid-week update

I stay so freakin' busy during the work week (since I don't have that fat publishing contract YET, I still work a day job) I never even look at the blog during the week, but now that the short, short story can be viewed on smashwords.com, I wanted to update ya'll. 


Also, I do have in my grubby little achey hands (it's raining here today!) the absolute, final proof copy of "Bright Lights, Money & Show Biz, Honey",  I'll give a good thorough proofing to make sure it's all correct this time and announce an official release date.  I know...anticipation is high! :-D

Peaceful Tuesday to ya'll....big hugs! ~ K

Sunday, September 25, 2011


With the paperback version of "Bright Lights, Money & Show Biz, Honey" ready to unveil, I planned the much anticipated release and began to get my completed manuscript ready for e-distribution.  This is enough to make a writer go stark raving mad! All of the different e-versions to format...there's EPUB, Sony is LRF, Kindle uses .mobi, Palmdoc is PDB, there's the standard PDF, RTF, and plain text versions.  AND...AND...all of the online publications use A DIFFERENT ONE!!!  There is a point to my madness here, folks, so stay with me. 

I logged into my Smashwords account to upload a new file, a very short story I really like and decided to give away in e-format for free.  How can you do that, Kathleen, you ask?!?! Believe me, it’s a *very* short story and it's just one of those things that brings a smile to my little round face.  I enjoy writing so much and seriously would give it all away if I could, but there's overhead and paper and printing costs, and such... 

Anyway, I continue to digress, I went into my Smashwords account and brought up my dashboard and accidentally clicked on "Random Encounters" to do a review after I uploaded the short story.  I was massively horrified to find that unknown to me, as no one ever said anything about it, I had uploaded an incorrect version of "Random Encounters" and didn't even know it! Holy embarrassment, Batman!  So, if you are one who purchased a download from Smashwords, my humble apologies for you getting an incorrect version.  It has now been corrected to the right format, however I know that doesn't help anyone who has already paid for it.  Please e-mail me and I'll see that you get a paperback copy of the book to make up for having downloaded an incorrect format. 

In the middle of my cursing, yelling at dead air and causing my goofy black lab to run to his bed and bury his head in his paws, I realized part of my lunacy problem.  It was eerily quiet in my home office.  It suddenly occurred to me there was no music playing.  Anywhere.  This is an odd situation for me.  There is always music playing near me, even if it's with my ear buds so only I can hear.  I do have some consideration for my housemates who abhor my music blasting at all hours.  I knew the lack of music was the reason my disposition was irritating not only the poor innocent dog, but me as well. I opened up Spotify and clicked on "Motley Crue" and soon I was chair wiggling to Vince encouraging me to take a ride on the "Wild Side" and all was right with my warped little world again *happy dance*.

So that brings me to one of the points of today's blog.  A free download of a short, short story titled "Til Death" will be available at Smashwords. I will provide the link as soon as I receive it. I hoped it would be ready for today, but apparently Smashwords is a little behind on the "pending approval" status of uploads and it's not ready yet. By next week I'm sure I'll have it and I can bring it to you. I hoped you might enjoy reading some of what goes through my twisted little (and I do mean little) mind at times.  I think it's a fun story and is at least enough of a distraction to take your mind off of anything clouding your thoughts today.  I will from time to time add to the free short stories until I run out, which means... NEVER!  My tweaked brain never runs out of something to ramble about in print.  Verbally...not so much. 

Lastly, due to having too many projects going at once and not near enough time to give them all their full due, I'm going to release "Bright Lights, Money & Show Biz, Honey" in a limited edition paperback.  There will be 100 copies available for purchase in paperback as you see it on this blog screen with the picture on the front. It will eventually be available in e-reader versions, but the paperback will come out first.  Sheesh...it's gonna take me a while to get all those different e-reader versions done! I'm just one woman, not a machine *snicker*.  As soon as I receive the absolute final proof copy from Amazon this week, I'll release it for sale and I'll announce officially here when that happens.  I do, of course, have to proof the proof copy (isn't that what one does with a proof?) and make extra sure this time all is formatted correctly! Yikes!

My next book, the longest actual novel I have written thus far (not a novella) is going to take me until the first of the year to complete for release in paperback.  I still don't have a cover, which needs to consist of a cowboy image, horses, a beautiful woman who bears a striking resemblance to Gwyneth Paltrow, a ranch with some cattle on the range and that sort of thing, and also the title is coming into question.  More on that when I get closer to a release date.  I originally started "If I Weren't So..." in 2006, and have edited, revisited, re-edited, revised, reformatted...etc.,  and it's one of those that I could keep making subtle changes to forever, but I really want it to be read so will have to find a way to call it good soon and be satisfied with my finished product.  Maybe I'll have a 'name that novel' contest.  Yes! That would splendid! *Happy face*.  I could post a synopsis and let readers give ideas for a proper name.  I'm pretty fond of "If I Weren't So..." but I could be bought (had).  The sequel is titled "Still Wanted" and that will come later in 2012, probably late fall, or perhaps closer to the holidays. 

Hug somebody today! I did and it was divine.  The highlight of my day!   

Fictionally yours,

~ K

Saturday, September 17, 2011

"Entitlement" ~ A rare rant, and miscellaneous random ramblings

That word is tossed around far too often for my liking.  What is entitlement?  Encarta dictionary definition: "to give somebody the right to have or to do something".

We are born with some rights.  Basic human rights and the rights conferred on us by our constitution. Entitlement? Some people seem to think that the mere act of being born entitles them to certain comforts.  I get short tempered with people who sit around and moan and complain that life has dealt them a crappy hand because they don't have it as good as the next guy.  Wah!  I realize there are some who from the get go are disadvantaged, but the people I know and are specifically speaking of, have no disadvantages except they are lazy and unmotivated.  So...life didn't turn out with a story book ending? Join the club.  I can't think of any that do.  Even privileged people have problems that I don't envy.  Heartache, death, addiction, unemployment, catastrophic loss, any number of life's curves thrown our way that knows no economic status, or discrimination.  Daily difficulties in life affect all of us, how we deal with them separates us.   Sometimes recognizing how others deal with daily life helps me to take a step back and examine my own actions and reactions.

What turned my normally sweet disposition sour, you ask.  Well...it's been a crappy week. I find that when things aren't going so smoothly, I tend to get more irritable.  I found I was doing my share of whining myself, and that bothered me.  It's too easy to get sucked into the poor pitiful me party, so I decided I'd get it out of my system and maybe I'd feel better.


I was reading comments at one of the writer's websites I frequent.  I get so weary of authors who think their manuscript is the most fascinating writing to come about since "The Great Gatsby" (or, insert any classic novel here) whining about not being able to find a publisher/agent, whichever the case may be.  Their attitude is, since they wrote it, and it's finished, they have the right to have it published.  Bullshit!  Publishers, agents and editors are so saturated with manuscripts and queries right now, I'm surprised they can even leave their offices.  I have several stories finished.  I'm not so self centered to believe they are greatness.  I aspire to greatness, and maybe someday I'll get near there with practice, practice, practice...as the saying goes. I have a simple way of storytelling that I hope will appeal to a certain audience. I don't love every book I pick up. I don't love every author I've ever read. I'm sure some readers and reviewers disagree with me. That doesn't offend me.  Writing is subjective and not all styles of writing appeal to all readers. Conversely, I've read many independent authors novels that I thought were terrific and found it beyond comprehension that a publisher had not picked up their novel.  To feel one is entitled to a lucrative publishing contract based on ones own opinion of their art, is unrealistic.


I've also noticed an increase in whining about our economy being in the septic.  Not much an individual can do about that, what with our government in such dire straights.  I feel for those folks who have through no fault of their own, lost their jobs.  It's devastating.  I know, cause I've lost jobs in the past and I know how it feels.  I've had to search for a job, so I know rejection and how difficult it is to find a job in tough times.  But, for cryin'outfreakin'loud,  get up off the couch, put down the remote or the game controller, whatever is capturing your attention, and do something positive! No one can make a difference in your life, but you. 


What's up with college football?  Every season, we get some college team who had a terrific year, then are slapped with NCAA sanctions on the current season due to violations in the past.  Are college educated people really that stupid?  To believe they can get away with violating the rules to obtain the best players and give them an advantage isn't logical. I don't have a college degree, but my common sense tells me if I violate the rules, I'm going to get caught and pay a price for it.  Smarten up, people. 


I've received a few comments in e-mail (why there is a phobia to comment here, I don't know) about my blog.  Specifically, that it is too "unadorned".  Well...I'm an unadorned kind of gal. No glitz, glamour, or frills.  I'm pretty simple, my writing style is simple, and I really don't have the patience to ghetto up the blog for aesthetic purposes.  I like the color, and the serenity of the simplicity. The objective is to communicate, promote my books and give other artists a forum to promote their art.  Putting up video, cutesy snapshots or other photoshopped garb would take away from the main subject.  So, deal with it.  People who know me, know that what you see, is what you get.  I'm not a superficial kind of person, nor do I give in to what is popular or mainstream.  Hence, being an independent artist. 

There. All better now.  Me whining about other people's whining.  The pot calling the kettle black, you say? Well, sometimes we all need to blow off a little steam. And, sometimes...we just feel powerless over some things in our lives that we want to change, but have no control of and it makes us miserable, so we complain, or rant, or take it out on others when we don't really mean to, or it shows in our attitude. What's your rant today? Post it here and feel better.  

Stealing a cue from my friends at Hobart (www.hobartpulp.com, if you haven't visited them, please do):

Things we like: Green olives in spaghetti sauce, the new Camaro SS (in cops-chase-me red!), maple cupcakes with bacon topping from Temptations, non-judgmental friends, NCIS reruns (can't wait for the season opener!), kids going back to school, the burning bushes turning, new shoes, the porch, eating ripe tomatoes right off the upside down vine, a really smooth red wine, new music by anybody putting out new music, the playoffs, fall.   

Things we dislike: judgmental people, chips that break when you try to scoop the dip, flies in the kitchen, vacuum left at the bottom of the stairs (again!), extortion, missing a close friend, expired coupons, work, hurt feelings, new shoes, Lee Child gave Jack Reacher a girlfriend and a house(!), snooty artists with I'm-better-than-you attitudes, grudges.


Now that I've gotten all that off my chest, I'll go back to my usual annoyingly sweet self.  I will get back to the business of writing, reading, and reviewing. I have some great independent artists to bring you in the coming weeks.  Something tells me I'll have plenty of time for that now.  I'm currently reading "A Spy At Home" by Joseph Rinaldo and will have a review and interview with the author in the near future.  My apologies to artists who have contacted me to read, review and interview. I've been a little overwhelmed with e-mails on that subject and I decided the only fair way to do it, was first come.  I've had to decline a few simply due to the subject matter not of my interest, i.e. children's books.  I don't have a desire to read or review children's books, so if you're a children's author I will save you the time of submitting to me.  I still need musicians to interview, too, so if you're a musician who would like a shameless plug, please get in touch, speshlk0510@msn.com, or tweet @speshlk0510. 

"Random Encounters" and "LifeLoveLust" are available: www.lifelovelust.webs.com or for e-reader versions lulu.com, smashwords.com, or amazon.com.  I haven't decided yet on a firm release date for "Bright Lights, Money & Show Biz, Honey" but it'll be soon and I most certainly will announce it here first. 

Hug somebody today! I could have used one myself ;-)

Serenely (now!) yours,

~ K

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Going to extremes ~ 9/11

"More Than Words" ~ Extreme
"I Go To Extremes" ~ Billy Joel
"Extreme Ways" ~ Moby

Some examples of music that contain or are about going to extremes.  Music is so instrumental to my creativity; it inspires much of my own writing as does the written word.  Sometimes I get an idea for prose or short story from something I've read by another author whether it be novel, poetry, blog...whatever someone else has written that sparked my devious pea brain to expand on.  It's that way with many artists I've talked to, others who've created something by inspiration from another's art in some form.  Singing or writing about extremes can take many forms, as these songs demonstrate. Their content is all very different by very different artists. Being extreme in any behavior is almost in any case, a negative action.  Too much or too little of something, anything, can many times be an effort in futility.  No progress is made because not enough was done to further the goal, or too much was given and it dissipates due to overkill.  Even extreme kindness can go the wrong way and smother someone to the point of annoyance.  A good reason not to go to extremes, but find balance.

I struggled with what to write about today.  Not that I don't think it's important to honor those who died in the horrific terrorist attack on our country, I do, but I didn't want to be cliche' about it.  To make light of it by not writing in completeness to show the whole picture would not do justice for those whose lives were tragically changed, or in the extreme case, ended that day.  To go overboard and give too much attention to the barbarians who perpetrated their extreme act of destruction, would do exactly what they want, which is to glorify their actions.  That is the last thing I want to do! Nothing done that day should be glorified except those left behind in the wreckage and ruins who worked tirelessly to help save anyone still breathing.  Paying tribute to those who lost their lives and those lives forever changed by extremists (who consider Americans enemies and want us brutally murdered because we don't believe in their god) in a simple yet meaningful way, is more my style.  I'm a person who believes every little bit helps.  If we all do our part in small ways, it adds up to a collective difference. 

I've read all week first account experiences from people who witnessed the destruction. Most of us probably remember where we were at that exact time, watching or listening in disbelief.  It was like a nightmare come to life on the television screen.  Nothing I can write from that position could come close to what people experienced. Trying to find some way to write about it would be an injustice to those who lived it.  My part is to hopefully, plant a seed of kindness and caring that will grow into others to be more tolerant.  We all have our opinions and those opinions cause disagreements, but it's nothing so serious as to hurt and maim others over. That's a mindset I'll never be able to understand. 

"Live and Let Live" ~ Jefferson Starship
"Imagine" ~ John Lennon
"Leave an Open Door" ~ Roger Clyne & the Peacemakers

All good examples of letting go of hurt, anger, transgressions done to us and live in peace and harmony in spite of differences.  Why is this such a difficult concept for some to grasp? It's very simple to me.  I leave you alone to do as you believe, you leave me alone to do as I believe and we all live in peace, agreeing to disagree.  Instead, there are those who believe anyone who is not with them is against them, is their enemy and must suffer and die.  Not only die, but suffer and die which is a concept I will never be able to understand.  My creator put us here to love each other and take care of each other, not destroy each other.  Sometimes, just letting the music from someone else's soul, absorb into our own will guide us on a path of understanding and tolerance.  That's why music has such a profound effect on my life. Writing comes from the heart and I admire artists who are bold enough to put their souls out there for the rest of us to see in their music, and in some ways judge.  It's enlightening and somewhat redeeming to see honesty and sincerity so freely expressed.

The extremists who persevere to destroy America will not prevail, because hatred only breeds more hatred and will ultimately self destruct in its own blood and vile.  Today I give thanks for living in a country that allows me to speak my mind in such a way, to express my ideas in print without fear of persecution, well...except by those who may comment their own ideas whether in agreement or not, which is most welcome.  I give thanks for people who so selflessly give themselves to defend and protect us, and yes...even for our government which right now is pretty messed up and has our country knotted up in debt and disagreement.  It beats any alternative I can find in any other part of this world.  And, a simple but heartfelt thank you to those who are still living the nightmare of 9/11/2001 for the sacrifices they and/or their families have made.  It's humbling to me and makes me feel very small in the big picture.  I'm just a writer with my own thoughts and ideas, blessed to have a platform to express them.

God bless America!

Somebody you know needs a hug today! Share one with them and rejoice in loving life. 

Peacefully yours,

~ K


Monday, September 5, 2011


The playlist says it all.  It was the annual "Roger Clyne & the Peacemakers" show at House of Blues in Las Vegas, Saturday night Sept. 3.  The tequila was smooth and the band was sharp!  Having been addicted to their music since seeing them open for John Fogerty in 2004, I seldom get to road trip to see the band. This was a real treat, well worth the travel to get there.  Met some awesome fans, who like me had traveled quite a ways to get to see this show.  The band did not disappoint!  The Sunday morning after had me wishing I had sipped my Mexican Moonshine a little bit slower, with a heavy head I wrote down details of the show that I knew others would want to know and have already been texting and e-mailing me about.  Those of us who are addicted to this band knew this would be a most special event.  It was announced recently that this "RCPM" show would be a nostalgic journey into the past and we would get "The Refreshments" debut album "Fizzy, Fuzzy, Big & Buzzy" from beginning to end, in order.  This is rare. Without asking the band themselves why that is, speculation has always been that it was preferable to Roger & P.H. that they move on to new, and grow with their music, not stand still in the past.  Roger is well known to be adventurous when it comes to lyrical content, which I think is well...refreshing. I mean, really, who wants to listen to the same music from a band over and over? We've gotten something completely different from each new album the band has recorded and it's nice to not only be surprised by what we get that's new, but also get to experience the changes the artists go through in their own lives.  These are not carefree partying college students anymore. They are grown men with families and serious responsibilities and so the band has a wonderful way of weaving the highs and lows of normal everyday life into the music that we love. "FFB&B" with two of the original four members of the previous and highly successful band, "The Refreshments", was an amazing experience. "The Refreshments", who disbanded in 1998, was rounded out by bassist Art "Buddy" Edwards and cult status guitarist Brian Blush. Those four members of the band when "FFB&B" was recorded were a unique blend of quirky and sass. Four young men who had nothing to lose, everything to gain, and had no fear of pushing the musical envelope to the limit.  They did it with class, a little attitude, and some thumbing of their noses at corporate music empires that lost at trying to make the band conform to their rules and ways of operation. "The Refreshments" walked away from that attempt at control, Roger Clyne and drummer P.H. Naffah morphed into "Roger Clyne & the Peacemakers" and have been independent ever since.  They work hard at playing rock 'n roll for us fans who can never get enough of their Americana and old west gun slinging style of music. A little south of the border quality mixed in gives us fans a nice well rounded sound that we've grown to love.  Bassist Nick Scropos and guitarist Jim "JD" Dalton now complete the four member band that has a tight chemistry that just plain works to the point of perfection.  

The first half of the show was "The Refreshments" debut Mercury album "Fizzy, Fuzzy, Big & Buzzy" and it was a real treat! Flawless from beginning to end, Roger rocked his red Converses and Hawaiian shirt adding even more nostalgia to the music.  He hasn't lost any of his spark from those younger, carefree days.  It was perfect from "Blue Collar Suicide" all the way through to "Nada".  Most of those songs get played in the regular rotation of the "RCPM" shows, but getting the album from beginning to end in order was a nice trip back down memory lane of the '90's when "Banditos" took the band to nationally known status.  The second half of the show brought out favorites from the "RCPM" newest  release of "Unida Cantina", with rockin' toe tapping tunes like "Heaven On A Paper Plate", the haunting "Marie" & tongue in cheek of "Dinero". Thrown into the mix were many all time fan favorites that we've grown to love and expect when we get our music fix from this band. "Beautiful Disaster", "I Don't Need Another Thrill", "Contraband" and the ever popular "Preachers Daughter", another song from 'freshies days, are just a few in the set list that wowed the crowd. Jason Boots joined the band on stage with his trusty trumpet for "Lemons" and "Mexico".  How they never get tired of playing the same songs night after night and still have all the enthusiasm like it's the first time, is beyond me. They are certainly consummate professionals and they enjoy giving us fans what we want to hear. I'm grateful to them for that as I usually only get two or maybe three shows a year lately, so I really appreciate that no matter how many times they play those tunes they still do it with all of the energy and vitality of a first time.  

This was my first time at "House of Blues".  Many fans have road tripped to this once-a-year show on Labor Day weekend, but I had not been able to manage it before now. House of Blues is inside the huge Mandalay Bay Casino at the south end of Las Vegas’ famous Strip.  It’s a perfect venue for a close, sweaty, loud celebration like this one.  It was packed from floor to door.  I don't have a count of how many fans were attending, but it was standing room only.  As Roger usually does at shows, he asked for a show of hands from people who were seeing the band for the first time.  Just a few hands went up, then he asked how many of us were not seeing the band for the first time and the audience erupted!  It was heavily populated by show veterans who've been following the band for years.

A heartfelt, huge thank you to the band for giving us all a little slice of heaven packed into a three hour (or so) show.  It was well worth the 1200 miles of annoying air travel to see and I'm confident the rest of the audience thought so, too, from wherever they came from.  And they gather for the concerts from everywhere; I met people there I have known from years of RCPM concerts,and see only a couple times a year.  There was much dancing, singing every word to every song at the top of our lungs (I'm still a little hoarse today) and even though a little too much tequila had me with a heavy head most of Sunday recovering, the fog is clearing and I can't help but smile at what a great time was had by all.  There's something magical about following this band. Their music is so positive, so uplifting and the energy they give out to the audience is contagious! It's impossible to leave that show without a huge smile, a renewed spirit and knowing that life is grand, love is real and beauty is everywhere!  

Visit their website at http://www.azpeacemakers.com/ for show information and to buy their music.  Sign up for the message board (Zocalo) to interact with other fans and plan your road trip. It's great fun with great people all brought to you from a great band with awesome music! Salud, Peacemakers!

I'll be back next week with more concrete information about where and when to get my latest creation "Bright Lights, Money & Show Biz, Honey".  I’m reviewing the final proof copy now, and I'm just waiting to formalize a few things before I officially release it.  Meantime, you can order "Random Encounters" and I still have a couple copies of "LifeLoveLust" I'll throw in if you order from my website http://www.lifelovelust.webs.com/

Hug somebody today!

Refreshingly yours,

~ K