Sweet mother of hell, I had a lot more to say than I had planned.

Greetings, humans!  How is everyone on this fabulous Monday evening?  The sun was shining today (not here, but I’m sure it is somewhere), the birds were singing (again, not here, but somewhere) and my coffee was absolute perfection (that last bit is actually very true….mmmmmmmmmmmmm).  In truth, around here, it was rainy and unseasonably warm.  Our average temperature for the month of December is about 20 degrees Fahrenheit.  Instead, when I started typing this post, we were rockin’ out at 44 degrees on December 14th in New Hampshire, USA.  That’s some Twilight Zone shit.

Right now, I’m on the final stretch of my countdown to my next trip to Vegas.  At this point, I’m usually miserable and freezing and wishing my date to move out to Arizona was here NOW.  My yard is usually buried under large mounds of frozen white shit and I can be found climbing the walls of my house or crying for no reason.  I’m not a fan of winter.  Or being cold.  lol  Any other year, I’d be pretty bitchy about the fact that there is still another month to go before my flight takes off, but not this time!  This time, the jet stream chose to do this cute little wiggle thing and shift it’s normal path.  As a result, we’re half way through December and it feels like mid-October temperatures.

Our high today was 49 degrees, so big ups to Mother Nature and her desire to give this little sun worshipper a break for once.  It’s nice to be able to get ready for this trip without the traditional daily screaming of obscenities about how much I can’t stand living here because of the winter months.  I was still wearing flip flops a week ago!  Of course, when someone made a comment about my flip flops, I remembered that I need a new pair for Vegas, and then proceeded to start bugging out about where the hell I’m going to find flip flops in December.  Eh, well.  Maybe I’ll just wait on picking some up until I get to Las Vegas.

Today’s post is going to be a wordy one.  I don’t know why I feel the need to add in that warning.  Anyone who follows my bloggy blog already knows I have a thing for long blog posts.  Lol

Due to some personal stuff, I’ve been awful about blogging regularly, but I’m back on track now.  This blog post is going to kind of bring you up to date on everything all at once.

Let’s get to it, shall we?

jena sig 2015

In This Post:

  • What I’ve been writing…
  • What I’ve been reading…
  • What I’ve been watching…
  • What I’ve been listening to…
  • The banned Muppets book…
  • The Amazon Review Policy controversy…
  • Genesis boxed set preorder is LIVE…
  • Rock & Read Author Event NEXT MONTH…

 

What I’ve been writing…

I AM SO CLOSE TO BEING FINISHED WITH DANCE WITH THE DEVIL!  That doesn’t mean it’s going to be published soon.  I still have the whole editing dance to do, but I’ll be happy the day the draft is complete.  Once that’s done, I’ll set the release date.

Bad Wolf has been shelved until Dance is in my editor’s hands.  However, I’m still looking at the two releases being right on top of one another.  They’ll probably be about a month apart.  This is provided I can make up my damn mind on the cover.  The concept isn’t even started because I simply cant decide what the hell I want.  lol

Untitled (a.k.a. the Nick & Lexi project) will be out just shortly after Bad Wolf.  Probably two months or so.  However, I’m also coverless for this one right now, too.  I haven’t even started thinking about a cover.  lol

These are the three titles I’m focusing on out of the five WIP documents I have going.  Cant wait to get everything up and see what you all think.  😉

 

What I’ve been reading…

The problem with working a day job, running a PR company, PA’ing for other authors, and trying to have a writing career is that I no longer have a ton of reading time.  I have a habit of going on reading binges that sometimes last for several weeks at a shot.

As I mentioned regarding the blogging up above, I had some personal stuff going on recently.  The nice thing about that is I had LOTS of reading time.  Here are a few of the books I’ve read recently with mini reviews and links to my fill reviews if possible.

BetrayedBetrayed by Amber Lynn Natusch

This book made me cry.  lol  This is a bittersweet one.  Amber and I have been friends since she published the first title in this series.  Four years later, almost to the day, she’s publishing Betrayed, the final installment in the series.  And it’s so goooooooooooooooood!  For now I will just say it was an epic ending to and epic series.  Loved it.  🙂

(Review on PureTextuality.com)


 

still-foolin-emStill Foolin’ ‘Em by Bill Crystal

LOVED.  Cover to cover.  One of the best, most uplifting books I’ve ever read.  I think I might actually be a little bit in love with Mr. Crystal after reading this book.  He’s led one of the most interesting lives ever and the stories are captivating.

(Review on PureTextuality.com)

 


 

yes-pleaseYes, Please by Amy Poehler

So good I’m currently re-listening to the audio book.  No shit.  I dont care who or what you’re into or going through right now, read this book.

(Review on PureTextuality.com)

 


 

Trouble MakerTrouble Maker by Leah Remini

Fascinating and it made me love her even more.  Yes, kids, the Church of Scientology is far more fucked up than you ever imagined.  Like, waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay more fucked up.  #WhereIsShelly

(Haven’t reviewed this one yet.)

 


 

Seriously I'm KiddingSeriously, I’m Kidding by Ellen Degeneres

Meh.  I love Ellen and the majority of this book was very good, but there are parts that were definitely thrown in to jack up the word count.  Like, she legitimately has a chapter dedicated to whale sounds…  Nothing against whales, but seriously?  Aside from that, the REAL content of the book is fantastic.

(Haven’t reviewed this one yet.)

 


 

prick_full_amazonMonster Prick by Kendall Ryan

My first time reading Kendall Ryan.  Good, quick read.  Light and romancing.  However, I find the title a little misleading because the “monster prick” really isn’t a prick anywhere throughout the book.  He’s a slut, but not anyone I would consider an asshole.

(Review on SmuttyLittleSister.com)

 


 

bared-to-youBared to You by Sylvia Day

Due to the news of the release date on the final book in this series, I decided to give it a try.  Pretty good!  And I only wanted to smack the main character, like, three times!  For me and contemporary romance, that’s a HUGE win.  lol

(Review on PureTextuality.com)

 


 

FTA BlankFrom the Ashes by Amber Lynn Natusch

This isn’t out yet, but I got to read it as she was writing it and OMG.  So good.  Paranormal romance / urban fantasy, as her readers are used to, but a totally different world from Caged.  Dont expect a new Ruby book, that’s all I’m saying.

(Haven’t reviewed this one yet.)

 

 

What I’ve been watching…

I’ve been a SLACKER on the movie as of late.  I’ve been paying much more attention to TV instead.  However, there are a few items I’m patiently waiting for…

Star Wars: The Force Awakens Trailer

Star Trek Beyond Trailer

Batman Vs Superman: Dawn of Justice Trailer

NUMB3RS
As for TV, I’ve been all over the place.  I got hooked on the series NUMB3RS.  Unfortunately, I was about five years too late.  lol  I just finished binge watching the entire series.  Pretty good.  Sad that it ended.

numb3rs

 

Jessica Jones
I am five episodes into Jessica Jones as we speak.  I started watching that last night, and it’s quite safe to say that I will be following this one all the way through as long as Marvel doesn’t bomb it.  And David Tennant….  smh.  I just love that man.  He’s brilliant in everything he does.  The character of Kilgrave is such a harsh departure from everything we’re used to seeing him, but he OWNS that role.  I adore him even more now.

marvels_jessica_jones_-_kilgrave_key_art

 

NOS4A2
Joe Hill’s NOS4A2 got picked up by frikkin AMC!  This is amazing news and I am DYING to see it!!!  I loved this book and meeting Joe a few years back when NOS4A2 came out was an experience I will never forget.  🙂  I have a video of all of us singing some seriously fucked up Christmas carols.  lol  It was a blast.

NOS4AS

 

The Walking Dead
Jeffrey Dean Morgan has been cast as a baddie on The Walking Dead.  I dont give a shit if that character eats babies for fun, that’s one villain I will have a hard time hating.  I adore that man and everything he’s in.  Sigh……  *daydreams of John Winchester*  I mean, really!  Look at him!

JDM

 

Finding Carter
I dont even know if this is a guilty pleasure I’ve admitted to you guys yet.  I watch Finding Carter.  Have since S01E01 thanks to my girly spawn and now I’m hopelessly HOOKED.  Unfortunately, it appears as though the’ve brought in a fangirl crush of mine seemingly to turn him into a giant shitbag.  That’s not for sure, but it’s most definitely looking that way.

finding-carter-2b-2

 

Okay, from here on out, the rest of What I’ve been watching will contain spoilers, specifically concerning winter finales and what’s happening on my favorite shows.   Consider yourselves warned.

spoilers

Supernatural
LUCIFER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  OMG Lucifer is a SPN baddie I LOVED.  That whole season was probably my favorite time for the Winchesters.  I was super-excited to see him pop up in the winter finale.

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Also, I am LOVING the Dean/The Darkness angle.  Hot hot HOT!  Almost as good as Dean as a demon.

19-Supernatural-SPN-Season-Eleven-Episode-One-S11E1-Out-of-the-Darkness-Into-the-Fire-Jensen-Ackles-Emily-Swallow-Dean-Winchester-the-Darkness

 

The Vampire Diaries
I want to love it, you guys.  I really do.  I want to so badly.  However, we’re half way through this season now and it feels like the story is just lacking direction.  There’s a lot going on, but it feels like it’s just all over the place.  I was discussing this with author Julie Morgan last night.  I think we should lose the Heretics, bring back Kai because he was buckets of fun, and Bonnie and Damon should totally get pelvic.  Just sayin’…

maxresdefault-1-1024x576

 

The Originals
I watched the winter finale of this last night…  Jena is NOT happy.  Watching this winter finale is what led to the conversation with Julie Morgan in the first place.  WTF ARE THE WRITERS THINKING?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?  I know I’m not a writer on the show or whatever but I am not alright with the fact that Niklaus only gets moments of happiness in 30.726 second incriments once a year.  It’s bullshit.  I’m been waiting THREE FRIKKIN SEASONS for Klaus and Cami to finally get their moment and THAT’S HOW YOU END IT????????? REALLY?!?!?!?!?!  Eat me. That was straight up BULLSHIT.

the-originals-saison-3-episode-9-spoilers

First you all pull some shit with him and Caroline, and now Cami.  I get that Klaus is the most fun to watch when he’s hurting, but give him more than 30 seconds of goodness.  Everyone else on the show is gettin’ some.  Even frikkin Elijah!

And, for real????  Elijah and Hayley.  She’s a little hussy!  lol  She’s a married woman.  Regardless of how “complicated” Elijah and Hayley are, Jackson should be ripshit kind of pissed that she continues to have the type of relationship with Elijah that she does.  And Elijah, although I LOVE him, should be a little less obvious with all the eye-fucks he keeps throwing her way RIGHT IN FRONT OF JACKSON.  Seriously.  UGH!  Mark my words, Elijah will be the end of the Hayley and Jackson.

originals-hayley-elijah 2

Okay, I’m calm again.  lol  I love The Originals.  lol

 

The Blacklist
Still THE BEST writing on TV right now.  I love this show soooooooooo much and I am soooooooooooooooo pissed that Lizzy got caught!  I have no clue how the hell Red is going to pull this one out, but I’m sure he will.  🙂

The-Blacklist-Winter-Finale

Reddington is just so cool…….

Also, I would like to throw my congrats out into the ether.  It was announced just last week that The Blacklist has been picked up for season four!!!!!!  I’m so excited.  That’s a super-early announcement.

 

Scandal
#TeamJake  Fitz is a dick.  <–That pretty much sums up how I’m feeling about this show right now.

Oh look, Fitz’s head exploded….   *happy dance*

jake-fitz

 

Grey’s Anatomy
Yeah, I think I’m done.  This is an example of a show that has gone on too long.  It has no clear direction anymore and we’re right back to recycling story lines.  I’ve been so unimpressed with this whole season that I removed Grey’s from my DVR list.  Yep, it’s true ladies and gents.  I’ve officially thrown the towel in on Grey’s.  It was good while I lasted.  I cant do it anymore.  The show is killing me to continue watching.

greys-gif-1429885715

I’m done.  Wake me when they kill off Meredith.

 

Doctor Who
Is anyone else SUPER-HAPPY that Clara is gone?!?!?!?!?!?!  I’ll admit, though, as much as I was pulling for her to be off the show, I CRIED LIKE A BITCH when they said their goodbyes.  That was heart-wrenching!

d27ea94a65e59808e234cd13bdbccf47

doctor-who-clara-dead-1

AND HOW AWESOME IS THE CHRISTMAS SPECIAL GOING TO BE?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

tumblr_ncprny9ooQ1ttnuwro1_500

 

What I’ve been listening to…

Hail to the King by Avenged Sevenfold
A7X.  Lots and lots of A7X.  lol  I have recently become obsessed with Avenged Sevenfold again.  It’s not that they’re a new discovery for me.  I’ve been a fan since the premiere of Bat Country.  Being a Hunter S. Thompson fan, the video, an homage to Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, caught me from day one.  Love them.

That being said, I didn’t pay much attention to their Hail to the King album until about a month or so ago.

A7XHailtotheKing

NOW. I’M. OBSESSED.

It’s like the flame that was my initial love for them had a five gallon bucket of gasoline tossed on it.  lol  I haven’t listened to much of anything else for over a month now, and it’s worked out well because I write to music, and A7X is a fantastic inspiration for the Demon Legacy books.  🙂

Plus, M. Shadows.  Seriously.

  images A7XMShadows_answer_1_xlarge 7b5ba19587a39902cd2e41ba4affc14e
11116737_413066318875375_1769131861_n

He’s metal.  He’s got a great voice and a BAMF band.  He’s covered in tattoos.  He’s HAF.  He’s the thing that muses are made of.  😉

Podcasts
I’m a podcast addict.  Have been for about two years now and recently, I’ve heard some great interviews I thought you all might appreciate:

ON THE NERDIST PODCAST
Kelly Carlin, Daughter of Comedic Genius George Carlin
Daniel Radcliffe, Harry Motherfuckin’ Potter
Daniel Craig, James Bond, bitch!
Bruce Campbell, Ash from Evil Dead / Army of Darkness / Ash vs. Evil Dead

ON THE YOU MADE IT WEIRD PODCAST
Josh Radnor, Ted Mosby from How I Met Your Mother
Jimmy Kimmel, late night host
Kevin Nealon, comedic genius

 

The banned Muppets book…

I’m not going to get into this too much because you can go read the article on USA Today, but I really hope people like Mary Carney are not teaching my children.  The basic gist is that she wants the book banned:

Marshfield School Board member Mary Carney in July objected to the district’s use of the book For Every Child a Better World by Jim Henson in kindergarten classes, The book, she contends, contains images of suffering children living in poverty and violence, including one illustration that shows a child living in a box in the rain. Some people have said they were traumatized after reading the book, according to Carney, who cited online reviews as evidence.

“I just have concerns that it’s too graphic, even though these are Muppets characters,” Carney said. “Unfortunately in this world there is a lot of war and strife and poverty; I understand that. I just don’t know how appropriate that is to be teaching that to 5-year-olds.”

I’m all for protecting kids and keeping them as innocent as possible for as long as possible, but there is such a thing as going way too far.  Carney found that point.  This is the image she’s referring to as being traumatic:

graphic_2

Carney, who was elected to the school board in April, has previously raised concerns with the school’s kindergarten through sixth grade social studies curriculum. As part of objecting to the Henson book in July, Carney also claimed the curriculum takes away teachers’ autonomy and “downplays American exceptionalism” by focusing too much on global affairs.

I just……..I cant.  I cannot even get into how many different ways I want to say “Lady, you’re a fuckin’ idiot.”

 

 

The Amazon Review Policy controversy….

I wanted to post on this but I wanted to wait until I was able to thoroughly research it before I spoke.  Yesterday morning, a new screenshot has been circulating through the indie author community stating that Amazon has “new” review policies which are going to greatly impact our community.

The screenshot was from this blog post over on Reader’s Entertainment which summarizes what the review policy states.  Although everything they stated is true, the post is nonetheless still a little inflammatory.

I know it has started feeling like our hands are bound as independent authors.  I know is starting to feel like Amazon is bullying us around and making it so it’s hard to do business.  They’re not, but I get why you feel that way.

I’m writing about this today to play the role of the devil’s advocate for a minute and remind everyone of a few points concerning Amazon, because those who are blindly outraged by this are coming off as……..well, entitled brats.  I think entitled is a good word for it.

The Amazon review policy and how it works is NOT new.
It’s been in place for a LONG time.  They’ve just decided to enforce the rules a little more because fraudulent reviews have hit an all-time high, with indie author titles at the head of that shameful fact.  The bottom line is there are assholes out there who pay to stack their review deck.  I’m not doing it.  I doubt you’re doing it.  That doesn’t change the fact that there are those out there who are doing it, and they’ve made it so the punishment Amazon threatens in their policy (deleting the reviews) has now had to be enforced.  Does it suck?  Yes, but everyone who publishes on Amazon accepts their terms…

I’ll even use myself as an example of this one.  I’ve been a fan of Amber Lynn Natusch’s since she released Caged four years ago.  I was one of her first reviews for the book and we’ve been friends ever since.  She’s grown to be a very successful author, a good friend, and now, my boss.  I’m her PA now.  That doesn’t change the fact that I’m a fan or the fact that I stil love love LOVE that series, but it does make my reviews suspect.  We found out the hard way when Strayed came out that Amazon will no longer allow me to post reviews to her titles.  It sucks, but it’s their site, it’s their rules, and they have every right to enforce those rules.

It’s their site, it’s their rules, and they have every right to enforce those rules.
I laugh all the time when people get all bent out of shape over what Facebook does and doesn’t allow us to do, but here’s the rub:  it’s their site.  *shrug*  As long as you are not paying to be a member, you have no say in how things are run.  There is nothing you’re going to do or say that is going to make them change their rules.  They pay for the server space.  They pay for the man power.  Not you.  Never you.

This is no different with Amazon.  They’re the largest ebook retailer in the world.  Point blank.  They really aren’t going to give two shits if indie authors were to pull all of their books from the Amazon catalog.  That’s just fewer authors bitching that they have to listen to.  lol  Hachette, one of the original Big Six publishers, tried their hand at throwing a temper tantrum when Amazon enforced their own policies regarding pricing adjustments.  You know what that temper tantrum got Hachette?  Nothing but months of headaches.  Amazon flexed their muscle, pulled everything to a screeching halt, and let Hachette sit there and fume, all in the name of teaching them one lesson:  They’re our terms and you agreed to them in exchange for us letting you publish your books on OUR site to sell to OUR customers.  Basically, Amazon told Hachette to go sit in the corner until they were ready to conduct themselves like adults.  Do we really think outraged indies are of any concern to them?

Even if every indie were to pull their books tomorrow, the only one the in the equation who loses out is the indie.  Pull your books and you’re giving up their customer base and all the sales that come with it.  And Amazon just shrugs.  lol  Go ahead.  Take your business elsewhere and see what it does for you.  lol

The point to all of this is it’s their site and quite frankly, they can do whatever they want with it.  They allow us to use it to sell our wares.  They allow us.  They dont have to.  I bet if you look close enough at their terms, they probably even have something built in that states they have the right to terminate any account they see fit.  The terms of their website are completely up to them.  They are a commercial giant.  We are simply vendors they allow to do business with their customer base.

I dont argue that it sucks.  The problem I mentioned above about not being able to post my reviews on Amazon for Amber, that’s a problem I’ve run into with several other authors now as well.  I’m sure my reviews have even been deleted from others I dont know about.  It sucks, but it started a long time ago.

Regardless of how innocent and professional most of us are conducting ourselves, there are plenty who are not conducting themselves that way.  We can all thank the ones who broke the rules and made Amazon feel as though they needed to be more strict about the enforcement of the policies.  Hopefully, Amazon will see that a revision of the policy needs to be made, but that’s at their discretion.  No amount of yelling and screaming is going to change that.  Otherwise, KU authors would be making a whole lot more money.

Food for thought:  A year or two ago, we were all enraged, yelling and screaming about authors paying for fake reviews on Amazon.  Perhaps their decision to be more strict about policy enforcement is our own doing.

 

 

Genesis boxed set preorder is LIVE…

Genesis Boxed Set 2I’m uberexcited about the boxed set.  I’ve done an anthology before with a short story (The Stroke of Midnight), but I’ve never had a full-length book in a compilation before.  And the group of authors are awesome chicks with awesome talent in a genre I love to death.  All of us put in the first book in our own urban fantasy series, so, for $0.99 (limited time price), the reader gets eight full-length books and they’re all fantastic.  🙂  I’m really proud to be a part of this set.  I consider myself to be in very good company.  🙂  On the flip side, it’s also my third compilation title as the publisher and I’m pretty proud of that as well.  🙂  The Stroke of Midnight and My Dirty Little Valentine were both incredibly successful and I hope to see Genesis follow in their footsteps.  Who knows?  Maybe the next incarnation of Pure Textuality will be as a publishing house…  Anyway, the preorder link is officially live!!!!!!  It’s the first time I’ve done a preorder and it went surprisingly smooth.  🙂    (More Info)

 

 

Rock & Read Author Event NEXT MONTH….

11145211_1570370343227060_4535626181583744269_n30 DAYS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! OMG, I am sooooo excited for this trip.  First, I’m going to be joined on a vacation, for the first time ever, by Heather, one of my cohorts at Pure Textuality PR and a friend from long before Pure Textuality was even born.  While we’re there, I will finally get to meet so many awesome authors and industry peeps in person including (but not limited to) T.H. Snyder, M.J. Carnal, Alfie Gordillo, Lance Jones, Summer Clark, Robert Simmons, Shauna Kruse, Cassie Roop, Furious, Josh McCann, and so, so many more.  I will get to see Shakuita Johnson again, a fellow author and a local fan of the Demon Legacy series.  🙂  Most of all, I get to meet L.E. Chamberlin, an author and one of my bloggers over at SmuttyLittleSister.com.  She and I have become great friends online, but we’ve never met.  That’s going to be a lot of fun.  While there, Heather and I have a bunch of fun cooked up, including another trip out to see Australia’s Thunder From Down Under.  😉  That’s always a fun night out!  The trip is going to spectacular.  🙂  If any of you are going to be there, LET ME KNOW!!!!!

 

That’s it for tonight, kids.  🙂  I will DEFINITELY be posting tomorrow.  I’m going back to making it a daily routine.  🙂

Peace, love, and poptarts!

(4,261 Words    lol)

jena sig 2015

 

 

 

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