Archive

Tag Archives: ebook

Here is my latest interview, and a quick reminder to click&enter the >> Like Shards of Glass Giveaway

You could win a pre-made book cover, a bookmark, a $10 Amazon gift card, custom made jewelry, 2 signed print books, and more!

3. Are there any ways in which being a military spouse has informed what you read and write?

The topics I write about are never light and fluffy and pretty. I think that, even as a child, my imagination went to darker places, my heart went out to people who seemed sad, and I always appreciated substance. That said, no matter my lifestyle, I would be writing about the tough stuff. Awareness through art, letting people know they are not alone in their struggles, making it clear that no matter what, they do have something to relate to. Military Spouse Book Review Interview

IMG_20140806_142856_213

 

*I am not a psychologist, these are my personal thoughts and ideas, and should be coupled with professional help*



shardsthinair

Like Shards of Glass

Depression is very real. It’s touching and taking lives, whether we choose to see it or not. Look at the news. Take a look at the entertainers who’ve gone away. Many of the characters in the movies we watch, and novels we read, are struggling with mental illness within the storylines.

… Gone, whether we “believe” in depression or not.

Today, I will share ten things I believe could be uplifting in hard times.

1. You want to disappear, but you don’t want to wither away for good – nothing permanent. I know.

It’s just that, you hurt. And you need your own pocket in space, where time doesn’t exist. And you want to crawl into that safe space, where you can’t be misunderstood, called upon, or hurt.

Knowing this makes it no easier. Just because you know it’s you, and not others, or maybe partially others, mostly depression, doesn’t make it any easier.

In your fragile state, you want to isolate and remove yourself. And it makes perfect sense, to keep from lashing out, making things worse, the list goes on. But isolating yourself, and allowing your mind to tell you that everyone and everything is against you, will only bury you.

When your mind is clear, write down the things that make you feel happy, peaceful, calm, grateful, useful … you’re in a state of pain and numbness. You need to feel.

Keep the aforementioned list. And even when you don’t want to look at it, as your mind tells you lies and tells you that helping yourself is a waste of energy – energy that you don’t have – you look at that list. Look at it and pick something. Even five minutes of peace, are better than that hell you feel all around you.

I suffered from severe depression for over a decade. My condition deteriorated steadily. I was suicidal. ~Byron Katie

 

2. Everything that happens, you feel it on another level. Some wavelength straight from Satan’s lair. And it’s as if everything is crumbling. It’s as if everything is happening just to make you sink deeper into the ground.

There is truly no way around this. In your every day life, stressors will occur. People will make insensitive comments. People will minimize your feelings. Someone else will claim that they have/have had it worse. There is no way around it.

The only thing you can do, is carve out time for you. It’s hard to think about affirmations when self loathe is your main source of inner monologue. But if you can, as hard as it will be, breathe and distract yourself. Carve out time to distract yourself from, well, yourself.

Distract and distance yourself from any and all unimportant things that will zap your will to – well, remain awake and untethered from your bed.

Distract yourself how?

Meditate.quotesEver-wrestle-with

Art.

Music.

Read.

Movies.

Silly games on your phone.

If you can manage, activities with people who remind you what it feels like to belly laugh.

Take a look at that list you made in step 1.

“But depression is so insidious, and it compounds daily ..” Elizabeth Wurtzel

3. It’s as if you’re alone. Well, not alone, but more like you are hovering over yourself and others.

Deep down, we all know we are not alone. But what we don’t know, is who we can lean on, and if it’s worth it. You know you are not the only person who suffers from depression, but it hurts too much to interact and participate in daily activities. So, what do you do, when your mind has made you a ghost?

I think that it’s important to try to surround yourself with people who understand you. They know you when you’re at your best, and they know when you’re not yourself. They recognize how fragile you are, and not that it’s their job to cater to you, they just want you to feel comfortable. If you want to sit quietly, it’s okay with them. If you want to listen to music, they understand. If you want to observe and smile a vacant smile, they know it’s nothing personal.

That’s just the thing. You need to be able to trust that your loved ones do not take anything that you are experiencing personally. The people you need to encircle you, will not judge, tell you how to feel, throw things in your face, or accuse you of trying to stress them out with your issues.

One in six people suffer depression or a chronic anxiety disorder. These are not the worried well but those in severe mental pain with conditions crippling enough to prevent them living normal lives. Polly Toynbee

4. You’d rather not get out of bed. Why should you, you say to yourself.

quotesConfession-Sometimes-Im

It’s as if the bed sits underwater. And there’s an anchor pulling you down, under the covers, where you’re safe – safe but drowning.

You’re body aches from swimming upstream. Everything hurts from fighting off things and people that may not be against you. Stop. Try to stop. And the same way you are floating above yourself and everything around you, try to step outside of your thoughts. They are your enemy. One step at a time, you can free yourself from those shackles.

If you can stop those paralyzing thoughts long enough to say I’m going to be okay, then the next day, you can …

a. Stop the thoughts long enough to visualize yourself doing one thing – something – that is out of this bed. Even if that something you choose to do, is on the other side of the room, and ..

b. Breathe. Look around. You may feel lost. As if everything is unfamiliar, and you don’t belong. But you do. And you mean something. You mean so much. More than you realize … you’ve got to make yourself realize. It’s up to you. And if you can move yourself out of bed, and breathe, then the next day, you can …

c. Take a long shower. And keep breathing. And what if you pick a spot in a different room, and read or write or listen to or draw something that calms you?

d. Baby steps. Little by little, find your center, and as you find it, keep moving. Keep reaching. Keep searching. A little at a time.

Why do depressed people lie in bed? It isn’t because of great snuggle time under the blankets. It’s because depressed people can’t bring themselves to get out of bed. Almost any activity or task becomes a painful ordeal, even things as simple as taking a shower or getting dressed. Psychology Today

5. It’s as if those who don’t understand, say all the wrong things. Those who have experienced what you’re experiencing, are saying all of the wrong things. Those who haven’t felt this oppressive darkness, tell you to get up, work out, get over it – everyone has bad days. Those who’ve been where you are, may lump your problems together, or tell you that it will get better in a way that is nearly diminishing.

Guess what? Not everyone will understand. Hurts, but not everyone believes you’re as fragile and as broken as you say you are. The only thing you can do, is find a healthy balance between staying centered and picking your battles, keeping your focus on yourself and your recovery, and shielding yourself from the world – including those who know and love you. Please, don’t shield yourself from those who know, love, and want the best for you.

Depression begins with disappointment. When disappointment festers in our soul, it leads to discouragement.” Joyce Meyer

quotesand-so-you-have-to

6. Nothing you do is good enough. You may smile for a day, an hour, minute, second … but there’s no consistency. Everything you accomplish … not good enough. The things you do for others … not good enough. Your reflection … not good enough. Your. Every. Move. And. Thought: Not Good Enough.

I know, it’s not a good time for me to say this. But, I want to say it, anyway: You are more than good enough. There’s no better you than you. It’s so corny, I know, but it’s true. Without you, and your thoughts, and idiosyncrasies, and flaws, and expertise – oh, yes, you are brilliant!  … The world would lose a light. And not just any light. A star. You are so much more than this broken record that plays in your mind, and if you can step outside of what you’re saying to yourself, if only for a moment, little by little, you’ll defeat something evil. And you’ll go on to help the next man/woman who’s drowning.

“Some days, 24 hours is too much to stay put in, so I take the day hour by hour, moment by moment ..” Regina Brett

7. You are sleeping with the enemy. An enemy who whispers to you, that you are worthless. The world is better off without you. Why lie down and go to sleep, when you could sleep for an eternity? Why not use that razor, those scissors, that knife, for better things? It’s not like what you’d inflict on yourself would feel any worse than what’s breaking your heart, right now … so, why not?

Why not? Because you’re here, reading this, and you know, now – please believe me – your wings are fireproof. Covered in dust, singed, a bit bent – but not broken.

You’re a sight to see. Wings and all.

The whispers are addictive, but like any addiction, they’re a lie. And the lies – well, they can’t win. They simply can’t. There’s help. There’s support. It’s a long road, but you’re worth it, and your story, the story inside you – waiting to be told or written – is a miracle.

 

 

 

Now, babysteps … I, your loved ones, want to see you fly.  Hey-you-Yeah-you-Youre

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Music&Inspiration

1. I was very inspired by thoughts as simple and terrifying as: We are all potentially one step away from losing it all, one bad choice from addiction, one bad day away from losing ourselves.

2. I kept James Blake, ‘Retrograde’, and James Blake,’Case of you’, on repeat. There were a handful of artists, including Miguel and Raised by Swans, but for some reason, these two songs were at the top of my list.

dominiquequotescover-PNG-76

3. I love TCM, love classic movies, and I watched a lot of black and white films around the time I began writing this book. Why were they inspiring? Well, because many of my more intimate scenes were conceptualized  wanting to create something that was not forced, but was felt — because of anticipation and leaving things to the imagination.

In classic movies, if there was intimacy, viewers were drawn in, aware of what happened, and blushed as the scene faded to black. Then, the unmade bed, disheveled hair, and morning after, made it quite evident what had happened. Again, this inspired me to write intimate scenes that were slow-building and sensual, but not egregious or offensive.

4. Since my first two published novels were written a decade ago, I wanted to give readers a different side of me. I was also really excited to apply what I have learned over the past two years.

I drew inspiration from one of my newer novels, unpublished, which also involves addiction and co-dependence, and planned to write a short story. As I wrote it, I realized that maybe it would be a novella. But instead, Like Shards of Glass became a novel (I think it’s a bit on the short side.)

Hop over to Smashwords, and take a free peek at the sample!! Pre-order or Sample

 

 

Shards promo 4

 

 

*Tell us about what you write. How many novels have you written? Do you have any novels coming up?
I have written novels ranging from YA to family sagas; from abuse and dysfunctional relationships to addiction.
Since I started writing in high school, and didn’t actually finish those stories, I of course don’t count those as completed works. But around nineteen or twenty-years-old, I began finishing what I started, and even with those novels, when I go back through them, they do not reflect me as a writer now, (they need heavy editing and re-writes) so I don’t count those as completed. That said, probably have over a dozen completed novels, but only half of them are books I would share or publish.
The books I have self-published (then later published with Inknbeans Press) are Just Beneath the Surface, Just Beneath the Surface: Landon’s Story, and Undone.
My latest novel, Like Shards of Glass, is now available for preorder on Smashwords. Here’s the synopsis:
Beauty, pain, drugs, sex: repeat. Monroe Song, who considers herself nothing more than the wife of a terrorist, is struggling, failing, and drowning, trying to find her place in a world that has left her at the brink of insanity: Her husband, Carter, has opened fire at a mental health facility, before turning the ruthless gun on his sons, then himself.

Emptied wine bottles, and pills which bring her no relief or comfort, drive Monroe into the arms of Dominique, a man half her age, who offers her the perfect anecdote for her brokenness.

Monroe’s oldest son, Karter, once idolized his father. Karter is now haunted by his father’s face, words, and the massacre that is now his family legacy.

If Karter’s hero is a monster, a terrorist, who brutally murdered innocent people, what does that make Karter?

How can Monroe and Karter move forward when life has forgotten them? Then, again, with everything so distorted, why not spiral with the storm?

To read more, please click HERE

 

Like Shards of Glass

Character Names

1. Monroe Song-Helt

The name Monroe was not a difficult one. It simply came to me before I began jotting down notes. However, Monroe’s husband’s last name, Helt, took a bit of thought. It was originally Song, and a few chapters into writing, I wanted to keep Song as Monroe’s maiden name, and felt the need to change her husband’s name.

After a bit of research, I discovered Helt, which is Danish for hero. Once you read a bit about Monroe’s husband and son, and the way their perception of themselves as heroes, clashes with who they truly are, you will understand a bit more.

2. Dominique

I went back and forth with myself about naming my main male character Dominique. There was a certain irony in that once or twice, he was nicknamed “Dom,” which reminds me of dominance – a trait this character hardly possessed.

I cannot remember how or when or why the name stuck, but I considered changing the spelling. In the end, I stuck with Dominique, because I really wanted to emphasize the “ique” sound, with no confusion with the “ick” sound.

3. Karter

This name is a pretty simple choice. It, like Monroe, came to me in the brainstorming process. I wanted a name that was simple, with a somewhat interesting spelling. Also, Karter’s father is named Carter. With a variation of the spelling, it added to the chaos that was often felt by a son who was trapped in his own mind, fighting with the gruesome legacy his father had left behind.

4. Jasmine “James”

The character, Jasmine James, was considered a bit of a tomboy in one scene, then in the next, she was described as regal and poised. I enjoyed created a young woman who was not afraid to change her mind, state her opinion, restore cars with her father, or work alongside the callous Monroe Song.

5. Monroe and Karter changed their last name  …

To find out why, hop over to Smashwords and pre-order your copy of Like Shards of Glass!

 

 

Shards promo 4

 

In Just Beneath the Surface: Landon’s Story, the lines between love and obsession, man and monster, helping and controlling, are more than blurred …

quoterecite-14600-923961941-1bhd5yylandonconfusion

“While we were apart. Did you – ”

“Never. I’d never do that. Why would you even ask me that, Seven?”

“Then, what’s wrong?” Seven reached over to touch him.

“Don’t touch me, right now, baby. I swear I’m – ” Slowly, he ran his hands over his face.

“What’s wrong?”

“What would it take for you to leave me?” Landon asked, biting his nails.

“I don’t know, Landon. If you cheated or hit me. Why? Why are you – what’s wrong?”

With both hands on the steering wheel, Seven glanced over at him every few seconds and waited for his answer.

“I feel like I’ve lived all these different lives. Like I’m all these different people – and I mean bad ones. Like I been hiding, and I been good at it, Seven – the best at it. Now it’s all around me. How do you hide from something that’s all around you?”

“From what, Landon?”

“I’d never tell you.” He turned to look out the window. “What would I do that for? What would that do? Push you away? If I got you, if I have you, and you could forget about everything that’s not right here – right here in this car, we’d be so perfect. But you won’t let go, though. You refuse to let go.”

Seven gripped the steering wheel, as he began making the same demands he had been making since they became a couple: that she trust him wholeheartedly, let go of her friends and family.

“You’ll never find this anywhere else.” He pointed to his heart.

 

Just Beneath the Surface 2