Monday, September 30, 2013

Manic Monday: Copyright and How It Can Affect You...

Photo from Stock Xchng.
Just got zinged for using a photo on his blog without permission!
If you're like me and you blog, and if you're like me and you put photos on your blog then you're already aware of copyright issues. Most people know that if you use photos in your blog you have to be very careful, you cannot just grab any photo off the internet and use it in a blog post. I get most of my photos from Stock Xchng, RGB Stock, and MorgueFile. All are excellent resources for stock photos and all I have to do is give a credit and they're free.

How this subject came to my attention again was that I noticed on another blog that the author had stopped doing a Man Candy day due to concerns about copyright. Meaning they didn't want to run afowl of photographers who had taken the photos. This is one reason I decided not to post these types of photos directly to my blog initially, and decided to have a Pinterest board instead. Imagine my surprise when doing research to see that photographers can still sue Pinterest which actually ends up being you since their contract states clearly that you agree that any situations where a photographer or company claims copyright and that they're going to sue, you are responsible for all costs. That's right, Pinterest is not responsible, you are! Needless to say, I had missed that little tidbit when reading through the contract initially. I admit I skimmed it, like I do most online contracts. However, when I saw this, I knew I had to take down at least one of my boards. I certainly can't afford it if someone decides to sue me over a photo on my blog, so that being the case I deleted my Male Eye Candy Pinterest board. However, the eye candy has not gone away! LOL I created a new board Man Candy and it only has photos I can legally use. The way I found these types of photos was by going to Flickr, and doing an advanced search that had creative common's licenses, and had photos that could be altered and changed, and could be used commercially. I figured that way I was covered. And Pinterest links back to the photographer on Flickr so it works well for everyone. I also may decide to start tweeting and or FB'ing links to man candy. But we'll see. This was an idea mentioned to me by another author as a way to get around this. So, if you want to take a look, here's the link to my new Man Candy Pinterest Board!

I guess the moral of this story is be very sure that you can use that photo legally, otherwise you can wind up with a heap of trouble and lots of legal bills. If you want to know more about this and who the author was who ran into trouble because of a photo on her blog, you can read it here.

Want some legitimate places to find photos for your blog? Here's a list that I use, and yes, you still have to give credit as to where you got the photo, the only one you don't I believe is MorgueFile.

1. Stock Xchng
2. MorgueFile
3. RGB Stock
4. Free Digital Photos
5. Free Range Stock
6. Pixel Perfect Digital
7. Free Media Goo
8. Open Photo Net
9. Flickr Be very sure with Flickr that you go to Advanced Search and select Creative Common's License, Find Content to Use Commercially, Find Content to Modify, Adapt or Build Upon to be sure you can legally use the photo.
10: Flickr: Wanas This is a group of writers with blogs who decided to provide photos they had taken and make them available to other bloggers, all you have to do is give a credit to the photographer and you can use them without reprisal for free!

Another great resource for photos for your blog are photos in the Public Domain. This means you do not have to credit anyone and you can use the photos for just about anything at all.

Here are some resources for Public Domain Photos:

1. Wikipedia: Public Domain Images Resources 
2. Public Domain Pictures
3. Image After
4. Public Domain Photos
5. Public Domain Images
6. Pixabay This site has many wonderful free photos, vectors and drawings submitted by fantastic photographers and artists. While you don't need to give a credit, this site reminds us that photos of people or properties you need to get permission from the person or owner before using for commercial purposes. (You're okay for using on your blog though)
7. PD Photo

I'm always amazed at how so many people think you need to buy stock photos when there are all these resources that you can use at your fingertips.


Friday, September 27, 2013

Flash Fiction Friday: The Last Human

I begin to awaken and my body feels  heavy. How is that possible? The last thing I remember is heading towards home after walking to the grocery store. Was I hit by a care? I feel as if I've been hit by a bus. I open my eyes and then realize that that's all I can move. There's a watery green light that's flowing over what little I can see of the room, including my body. There's a panel to the left of me, and a small golden light is blinking there. But that's all. There's also some symbols but I don't recognize them. Where am I?

I try to swallow, but my mouth is so dry it feels as if it's covered in dust and mothballs. I work it trying to get some saliva going so I can at least clear the dryness in my mouth and throat, but I can't seem to work any up. I can feel my heart racing, it's pumping so hard that it's hitting my chest bones and I can actually feel it. Where am I? Why can't I move?

When I look up I try to scream. There's a face looking down at me through the glass and it's not human. My mouth stays open and I can feel the scream bubbling up from deep inside me, struggling to get out. But no sound leaves my mouth. The scream is silent and when I realize this my body cringes as though expecting a blow. But there's no where to go, there's something solid at my back and it is then that though I'm lying down, my body or rather whatever I'm lying in begins to tilt, bringing my head up.

The figure staring in at me is not human, and the face moves a bit farther away to make space for whatever I'm in I assume. As soon as my head is significantly raised the face comes back and I can hear tapping. I move my eyes down and see there's another panel outside what appears to be a coffin with a glass lid. The figure is tapping away at it with long slender fingers that have long solid claws. I feel my body flush and a dropping in my stomach. Those claws could rip me to pieces in seconds with no problem. Immobilized as I am I would have no defenses against something that knew how to use them.

I try to take deep breaths, try to calm myself. So far the figure hasn't made any aggressive moves. So far. What am I going to do if it does though? I try to move some part of my body again and find that I can wiggle the fingers on my left hand. That's good, maybe I'll soon be able to move other parts of my body. If I can move, I can at least fight if I have to. But who am I kidding and how long have I been immobilized? If it's been a long time my muscles may not work properly. I'm a nurse, and I've worked with patients who have been in comas, I know that muscles atrophy. If my muscles have atrophied I could be in trouble. My mind races as the tapping continues and I decide to look more closely at the figure.

His face is long with a flat nose that reminds me of a cat. At least I think it's a he. I'm too afraid to look at his eyes yet. His skin appears pink and there seems to be some kind of very light hair or fur covering it that's also pink. He has long white hair that hangs over his shoulder in some kind of braid, and he's very tall, I'd say six foot four inches at least. I've always been very good at guessing height. I'm still not looking at his eyes. I'm remembering how I was taught not to look a dog in directly in the eye for fear it might cause him to attack. I wonder if the same applies to alien cats. The man definitely has the look of a feline.

Without my realizing it I am now staring into his eyes. They're a soft topaz color and just like a cat's the eyes are elliptical. Not human eyes at all, not human.

He seems concerned about something, his forehead scrunches down, his eyes leave mine and he goes back to tapping at the outside panel. As I watch the long fingered claws tap away I hear a voice and my eyes dart to behind him where I finally see another figure. This one looks like him but not. He's obviously the same species, but his facial features are just different enough for me to make out in the greenish light to tell that he's someone else. The figure tapping away at the panel answers him back as though distracted.

Suddenly I hear a snick and the round glass panel begins to move downward. My belly full of the grease of fear I take a careful breath of the outside air and realize I can indeed breath it. I take a deeper breath, pulling the stale air into my sluggish lungs.

The clawed hand reaches towards me and I open my mouth to scream.  As if sensing my rising terror the strange hand pulls back and he seems to sigh. He points at my hand, and I find I can move my head just fine now and lift it to look down. I'm strapped down to whatever I'm lying on, my hands and feet manacled to it. He comes forward again, and this time I hold my breath waiting to see what he'll do. He reaches in and one clawed finger pushes on something and the manacle disappears and my hand is free. No knowing if he'll understand me if I speak, or even if I can speak. I nod at him and he nods back and then repeats the action with my other hand and both feet. I'm free...or am I?

My legs feel like jello and I would have fallen to the hard metal floor but the man cat catches me under the arms and puts one arm under my legs and easily picks me up. I carefully put both arms around his neck and lean into him. When I look over his shoulder I see something I would never have thought to see. A tail. A long pale pink tail with a fluff of white fur at the end. It moves with him and sways a bit back and forth, the end seemingly effortlessly held up so it doesn't drag on the floor.

The other man cat, turns and begins walking away, the one carrying me following him. Where are we going? I open my mouth to ask and again find I cannot speak. It's as if my vocal cords no longer work. Finally after continuing to try a small sound escapes me. A claw gently begins stroking my arm where it rests and loud rumbling purr begins vibrating from his chest. Guess that answers my question, definitely feline. Something about the deep rumbling purr put me at ease. As scared as I am, it tells me that the man cat doesn't mean any harm. Well, unless you're trying to relax  prey into not being scared so you can pounce. I bolted upright, struggling, my arms pushing against the strong chest. The cat man easily subdued me though, and the purring got louder and the hand gripping my leg also started gently stroking. Maybe he wasn't going to kill me, or eat me or...I didn't want to think anymore, I just wanted to go home.

A tear slipped down my cheek and then another followed. The being holding me took a deep breath and the chest beneath me expanded. Then I felt the weirdest sensation as if something, some presence were pushing in my head. Strange feelings inundated me, feelings that weren't my own. Curiosity, a desire to comfort, fear of not being understood.

I peeked up at the one carrying me to find he was looking down at me. I ducked my head again, there was something about those golden eyes, it was as if they could see right inside me to the fear, and the confusion. The rumbling purr started up again and before I knew it we were in a room that was much brighter than the one they'd found me in. In fact the light was so bright it hurt my eyes hurt. I shoved my face into a lightly furred pink chest and closed my eyes tightly.

For the first time I heard one of them speak. I didn't think it was my cat man because he was still making that rumbling purr sound. It must be the other one. Their language was strange and unlike any other I had ever heard before. When the other one spoke it was like a cross between a series of growls, a bit of a howl and then consonants strewn throughout. That it wasn't anywhere near my own language was painfully obvious. I have to wonder if I'll be able to communicate with them at all.

The lights suddenly came down a few notches and I carefully turned to stare around from my perch in the cat man's arms. Clearly having realized the lights were too bright for me, the other one had found a way to turn them down. I had no idea what I was looking at. The room was bare except for some sort of console and an area that reminded me of a stage. I wondered what was going to happen next.

My cat man finally spoke in that growly cadence they had and I felt as if warm syrup were flooding my body. As I stared down at the sort of bandage outfit that I was wearing, just enough to cover my private areas and little else I watched as my legs, then my cock and balls and finally my hands began to become translucent. Fear replaced the seconds of fascination I'd initially felt at seeing the weird change and I screamed like a girl, the sound cut off as we winked out of sight. I would be horribly embarrassed about that later I knew.

Just as quickly as we'd disappeared, we reappeared...somewhere else.

This place was completely different from where we'd been. For one thing it looked cleaner, newer, and there were other cat men here, a lot of other cat men. I shrunk back against the one holding me, and the purring started up again. Somehow he was able to tell when I was afraid, and acted accordingly. The purring soothed me on some level and I let some of the fear go and tried to relax against the one holding me.

I heard what sounded like the swish of a broom against a carpet almost and turned. A door had slid open and a much shorter version of the cat men around me barreled through the door talking a mile a minute, though again I couldn't understand him. If I hadn't been so concerned about where I was and what was going to happen to me, I would have been irritated. This one was speaking to the other cat man, his face more animated than I'd seen any of the others, his hands waving excitedly, a huge grin on his face showing off long fangs on each side. I sure hoped I wasn't about to become someone's meal!

Then the short one gestured to me and stared right into my eyes. That freaked me out, and I huddled up. He took a deep breath as though preparing himself for something difficult and then spoke words in a language I never thought to hear again.

"Do you understand me?"

I started to say, "yes," but nothing came out and I had to clear my throat before I could croak out, "Yes," then, "where am I?"

The smaller cat man smiled widely and said, "That doesn't matter, you're safe now. My name is Jalla. We need to take you to be looked over by our physician. You were asleep for a very long time near as we can tell. We need to be sure no damage was done to your cells during your sleep."

Now that Jalla was confident he would be understood, he was again talking a mile a minute and I almost couldn't follow his words.

"Jalla, please slow down, I can barely understand you. What do you mean I was asleep? Where am I?" I was starting to get a very bad feeling about this. My last memory was walking home from the store. This couldn't be good.

"Sorry. You're on the Galactic Starship Starbeam. I'm the ship's linguist, and these two are Rolfon," he pointed at the other cat man, then gestured at the one holding me, "and Delinar, both soldiers." Jalla smirked. "Delinar likes you very much." Jalla then wiggled his eyebrows.

I felt my eyes widen in shock. Did Jalla mean what I think he did? I turned to stare up and found golden eyes watching me with what could only be compassion. The rumbling purr started up again.

While it was true that I was gay, I wasn't sure how I felt about Delinar "liking me."

I patted the huge pecs beneath me. "Yeah, that's nice." I mumbled. "But you still haven't answered everything I asked. What do you mean I was asleep, the last thing I remember was walking home from the grocery store, then I woke up in some kind of glass and tin can with Delinar here staring in at me." I gestured to the huge cat man.

Jalla exchanged a look with Rolfon, one that had my fear notching up into the terror zone. "Jalla?" I whispered.

Jalla looked at me again, meeting my eyes, trepidation in his. "I'm not sure I'm supposed to tell you yet." He said looking uncomfortable.

"Tell me what? C'mon Jalla, you're the only one I can talk to here, and I'm starting freak out!" My voice rose and then cracked like a teenage boy's. Great, now I sounded like a pre-pubescent child.

Jalla's face became very serious, the playful cat from before totally gone. Here it comes, I thought to myself, here it comes. I'm not going to like this at all.

"You're human aren't you?" I reared back, stunned. They didn't know what species I was? That was even worse! What did it mean. I cleared my throat.

"Yeah, I'm human. Why?"

Delinar spoke though I didn't understand him, and Jalla answered back in the strange language.

"As near as we can tell from our records and other species' records, you are the last." He stated solemnly.

I didn't like this at all. "The last what?" I asked, my mind refusing to comprehend the words.

"The last human."

The words rolled through my mind instantly rejected by it. There was no way I could be the last, no way at all. There were billions of humans on Earth, hundreds of thousands being born every day. I couldn't be the last, I couldn't!

I could feel myself hyperventilating as I tried to breathe and found each breath a struggle. Dark spots began to dance in front of my eyes. I gasped once and darkness descended leaving my mind and consciousness quiet. The words, "the last...the last...the last," echoed in my mind before I went out like a light.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Eye Candy Thursdays: Yum! More Eye Candy!

Check out my board with lots of male, yum, eye candy! We all need it to get through the week, and who could resist these hunks? Not me! Check it out: Male Eye Candy

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Excerpt Wednesdays: Excerpt from Alien Deceptions by Regina Paul

Darek opened the front gate before going down the walk toward
Angel’s front door. He wasn’t sure why he was here, especially
after the set down she’d given him about only coming back for
one question session. He ran his hand through his hair
nervously, and then brought it down to stare at it as though he’d
never seen it before. He never felt nervous around women.
Always the consummate charmer, they’d simply fallen all over
him even before he was old enough to appreciate them. What is
different about Angel? Even as he asked himself the question, he
knew the answer. Angel didn’t fall all over him. In fact she acted
like she couldn’t stand him and didn’t want any part of him. So,
why am I here? Today of all days when I should be going over my duty
roster and attempting to find out what the Greys as the Earthers call
them wanted here? He knew that something felt wrong.
Something just hadn’t felt right when he woke this morning to
Earth’s bright sun through his quarter’s windows. He simply
knew he had to see her.
Growls from the other side of the door greeted him, and they
weren’t friendly. Darek sent his mind in search of the animal’s
mind. The wolf’s mental world showed a confusion of pictures,
the uppermost one being of the grey-colored beings he’d been
studying. Another showed simply an emotion of bright angry
swirling colors of red. He knew instantly the wolf had been
somehow frozen and unable to move to protect his mistress as
they’d taken her from the house. Then he understood she’d been
abducted again in his absence. A strange feeling of
protectiveness overcame him, and he sent calming and
reassuring thoughts to the wolf on the other side of the door,
promising in pictures to help his mistress.
The growls ended abruptly as the animal received his
message. He heard the animal scratch at the door, whining low
in his throat. Even before Darek could lift his hand to turn the
doorknob, the wolf flashed him a picture of Angel, her hair
matted with soap lying on the low couch in her living area with
tears rolling down her face. He knew with a tentative mind
touch she slept the unconscious sleep of someone trying
desperately to overcome shock.
He turned the knob quietly and entered the house. The wolf
stood exactly on the other side; his body planted protectively
against any more invaders. Darek held his hand out for the
intelligent animal to learn his scent. The wolf in a gesture of total
trust made a sound low in his throat and gently gripped the
man’s hand in his jaws, his yellow eyes trusting.
Darek waited for the wolf to release him, accepting his
gesture. He stared down into eyes that mirrored his pain at
being unable to help his mistress.
Finally, the wolf released his hand and then led him into the
living room, whining again when he saw Angel lying on the
couch. The animal pushed his cold, wet nose against her bare
neck several times trying to wake her.
Darek watched as Angel shuddered and pushed the cold
nose from her neck. She was clearly still asleep, not wanting to
wake up.
“Not now, Wolf,” she mumbled.
Darek simply stood there, not wanting to startle her. When
he happened to look down he saw where her robe had parted to
expose dried blood on her thighs. His stomach somersaulted
crazily for a moment. The blood had trickled all the way down
to her ankles and led a path up to the juncture of her thighs. It
didn’t take a rocket scientist to know that she’d been violated.
Darek almost turned, almost walked away. He couldn’t stand
the thought that she’d been hurt like that. He didn’t even know
her and violated his people’s laws by contacting her for reasons
other than finding her father, but he didn’t care. He just didn’t
care! For the first time he thought he had an inkling of why his
father felt so against the non-interference laws. Perhaps the laws
needed to be bent at times. Like now when another world
suffered what his had suffered two centuries before. Like this
time when a woman had been harmed and was suffering and
would most likely continue to suffer if someone didn’t intercede
on her behalf, if someone didn’t interfere.
His mind made up, Darek gently moved the wolf aside and
knelt before Angel’s still form. Not touching her physically
knowing it would terrify her in the state of shock she was now
in, he gently nudged her mind.
“Angel, Angel, you must wake up.”
“You must wake up!”
“No, I won’t!” Her mind voice sounded angry and then her
eyes shot wide open.
Darek watched as Angel’s mind registered that he was there.
It only took her another second to scramble to the other end
of the divan and scream, “Get away from me!”
“Angel, you’re hurt. Let me help you. I can help you.” He
kept his voice gentle and calm.
“Go away!” Her words reverberated against his eardrums.
“You can’t help me. No one can! They’ll come back! They always
come back! No one can stop them. They’re too powerful. Their
technology is too advanced! Oh, God, just leave me alone!”
As she shuddered and put her face in her hands before
starting to weep uncontrollably, Darek felt his throat try to close
up with his grief. “Just leave me alone! Leave me alone!” When
she sobbed, he didn’t know what to do.
When he touched her mind he found thoughts of death and
terror. It was clear the thought of it was more than she could
bear. Her feelings indicated she thought if she could just die, if
her heart would just stop, this would be the only way to escape.
Darek sat beside her, still not touching her. “I can help you
Angel. I can. Please let me.”
His continued light mind touch revealed her humiliation that
another person was witnessing her complete breakdown in the
face of something she couldn’t control.
“What don’t you understand about the word, ‘no’,” she
screamed at him, “How many times do I have to tell you to go
away before you will?” Her eyes flashed wild and hysterical.
When she jumped from the couch and ran to open the door,
screaming, “Get out,” he knew no matter what she did, he
couldn’t leave her in that condition. She needed medical help
badly, but he knew she wouldn’t get it from her people. Most of
her people didn’t believe her, even with physical evidence. He’d
have to let her wear herself out.
“Get out!” By this time, her voice sounded hoarse.
Darek simply looked at her and said, “No.”
Her hair flew wildly around her face as she slammed the
door shut and raced at him. Her hands curved inwardly into
claws, her long nails about to become weapons. “Why won’t you
just leave me alone?” She shrieked before she attacked him
ready to claw his face to shreds.
He grabbed her wrists firmly just before she cut his cheeks
with her nails. “Because you need help,” he told her calmly
staring into her wild eyes.
“Argh!” She shrieked, wiggling desperately in his grasp to
get her wrists free, but she was no match for Darek who stood
over a foot taller and weighed at least eighty pounds more than
her small frame.
“Stop it,” he said quietly, shaking her wrists a bit. “I’m not
going away, but neither am I going to hurt you. Calm down
When she stared at him blankly for a moment, he could tell
from her thoughts that some part of his voice finally broke
through to her. When tears began to fall again and she croaked
out, “They put something inside me again, Darek. They put
something inside me.” She wept again and fell against him.
“Why do they keep doing this to me? Why? Why?”
Darek closed his eyes as he realized what they’d done to her.
Dear Goddess, they’ve implanted her with one of their hybrids, one of
their freaks of nature. A conglomeration of their genetics, hers and
some poor human male’s who has probably also been violated. Pain
sliced through him, and he realized he’d lost all his objectivity
where this woman was concerned. He wrapped his arms around
her tightly, rocking back and forth. His eyes sought the wolf’s
and found his pain and helplessness mirrored there.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Promo Advice Tuesdays: Are You Using Google+?

If you're not using Google+ then you're missing out on a great marketing tool! Every post that gets put on Google+ winds up in Google's search engine. So, if you're trying to sell more books, then you most definitely want to be using it. Also, Google+ is a great way to get the word out not only about your books, but about your blog posts. I use it to post any blog posts that I make on this blog and it does help drive traffic to my blog.

One of the reasons that I love Blogger so much is that it has those lovely little buttons at the bottom of each post which makes it so easy to share my posts on not just Google+  but Twitter and FB. It also makes it easy for you, please share the love!

So, if you're not using Google+ or don't have an account then be sure and sign up for one today! It is a great little marketing tool to add to your arsenal.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Manic Monday: What to Do When You Get a Bad Review...

Okay, we've all had them, the bad review. Hell, I've given a few in my lifetime. I don't like to give them I certainly know what it feels like on the receiving end and it sucks. But I've learned a few ways to deal with getting bad reviews and here they are:

1. Don't get respond with any other words other than, "thank you."

2. Realize that reviews are just opinions and that not everyone is going to like your book.

3. If the bad review is on Amazon or B&N or another distributor and it's the only review you have, find a few reviewers that liked your book and ask them to post it on these distributor sites so it balances your rating out.

5. Have a glass of wine, or a piece of chocolate and forget about it. After all it's just one measly review, in the long run it doesn't mean much.

And that's my advice this Monday for when you get a bad review. Have a great week! :-)

Friday, September 20, 2013

Flash Fiction Fridays: The Pocket Watch

This is something new that I'm going to try out where I choose a stock photo and then write a piece of flash fiction about it. I've  always enjoyed reading other author's little bits of flash fiction so we'll see if you all enjoy my efforts too. :-)

Lara adjusted her goggles and leaned closer to stare at the pocket watch. How could such a tiny thing cause so much trouble?

"Adrian, get your ass in here!" She yelled to her second in command. "Now what?" She pointed at the watch. "You know damned well it's going to start a war on the planes if we don't figure out how to turn it off."

"Like I'm supposed to know? Good Lord, Lara, all you asked me to do was get it for you. You didn't say anything about figuring out how to work it." Adrian threw up his hands and turned in a quick circle. "I'm just your pilot, the person you turn to when you need an item, that's it. I have no idea how to work that thing." He gestured wildly.

"You're also my second in command. I thought I explained that to you. You're going to have to do better if you hope to hang onto the title."

"No on else would put up with you." Lara heard him murmur under his breath.

"What was that?" Lara turned on him, and she knew her eyes were flashing with the green fire that heralded the gift she'd inherited from their mother.

Adrian held up his hands in supplication. "Nothing, nothing." She watched as his eyes grew bigger and in a fit of temper she flung out her hand.

To her horror, she more heard rather than saw the pocket watch ggo flying from her desk, hit the wall and then land on the floor with a resounding crash.

"Bloody hell! Damned telekinesis. Why can't it work like that when  I need it to put gutter rats in their place?" She stormed over to where her brother was already crouched down and knelt at his side.

"I think it's broken."

"I doubt very much that it's broken, little brother." As if it heard Lara's words and deemed it to be so, they heard the watch begin ticking again, the tiny hands moving slowly around the face.

"Well, so much for hoping our troubles were over." Lara slapped her hands together to displace the dust on her leather gloves and stood up.

"All right, Adrian. I'm entrusting you with discovering how this thing works. I don't care what you have to do, or who you have to threaten, just figure it out and figure it out fast." She reached down, picked up the pocket watch and laid it back on her desk.

"Right then. I guess I'd better turn over the wheel to Giles while I just go and do that." Adrian's shoulders slumped a bit before he straightened up.

"And thank you, Adrian." Lara said softly. She hated being so hard on her younger brother, but he needed to grow up fast. There was a war coming and if they didn't figure out the pocket watch, they were going to lose.

(c) Copyright 2013 by Regina Paul. All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Eye Candy Thursdays...

Well, I'm sure I'm not the first woman to say "bring on the eye candy, yum!" So on Thursdays I'll be sharing a photo or two of some very hot male eye candy. After all we all need a little eye candy to get us through the rest of the week until the weekend!

One thing I do want to mention here though, you won't find the eye candy photos here on my blog and there's a reason for that. Most if not all of the really good eye candy photos are copyrighted. As an author I believe very strongly in protecting not just my own copyrights and not just for my e-books, but for other types of art as well. I'm the nerd that actually reads all the permissions on the free 3D art stuff that I download so I make sure I follow what I can actually use the item for. LOL

Instead, I'm using a Pinterest board titled "Male Eye Candy" to share great eye candy that I find around the web. The cool thing is this way I can share more with you my readers than I could if I just posted one or two photos that I actually could find and use legally. Pinterest is great because it provides a link to where the photo originally came from and so the original owner gets credit and I'm only "pinning it" not saving it to my computer and then putting it on my blog without permission. So, it's Thursday and I've posted some new eye candy to my board, check it out!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Excerpt Wednesdays: Excerpt from A Gift From Home by Regina Paul

“Oh, quite well actually.” Loraleigh’s eyes twinkled over one shoulder at her as she went towards the walk-in closet. “You really don’t remember me, do you?” She asked, her eyes losing their twinkle and turning a dull blue gray color.

“Huh?” Melanie stared at her in shock. She’d never met the woman in her life.

“We went to high school together, but you don’t remember me.”

“What’s your last name?”


Melanie went through names and faces mentally before her mind latched onto a vision of long plaid skirts, with long-sleeved white blouses or sweaters, no jewelry, no make-up, and eyeglasses that had huge red frames.

“You’re Loraleigh Bailey? Loraleigh the geek?” The kids had been awful to Loraleigh when they’d been in high school, teasing her about her old fashioned clothes, and her waist length braid.

“Yup, that’s me.”

“No way! What happened to you? You’re gorgeous now!”

“Changed my whole look when grandma died after I turned nineteen.”

“Boy, I guess. I would never have recognized you if you hadn’t just told me.”

“Yeah, well you can’t catch any hot women, looking like I did.”
Melanie’s brain burned at the words, women?

“Uh, don’t you mean guys?”

"Nope. I’m like you Melanie, I prefer my own sex.” With those word Loraleigh shucked her coat and reached down to lift her sweatshirt over her head.

“Uh, what are you doing?” Melanie asked as small bare breasts were revealed to her eyes with tiny blush brown nipples.

“Oh, I need to try something on and make sure it still fits before we go.” When she leaned down to untie her tennis shoes, her small breasts hung like ripe fruit and Melanie’s mouth watered to taste them.

A minute or so later after that, she toed off her shoes and socks before shimmying out of her skin tight black jeans. Lord have mercy, she’s wearing a thong.

The firm globes of Loraleigh’s perfect ass were parted by a bright red thong. “This won’t take long.”

“Don’t stop on my account.” Yeah, please don’t stop. Keep that beautiful bare ass, bare. God, what am I thinking? She’s my replacement for Christ’s sake.

When Loraleigh bent down to pick something up off the floor of the walk in closet, Melanie groaned as soaked pale blond fur and wet pussy lips peeked out the edges of Loraleigh’s underwear.

“Are you okay?” Melanie heard Loraleigh’s husky voice from a distance. She looked up.

“Huh? Yeah, I’m fine.”

“You made a sound.”

“Yup, nope, uh, I’m fine. Don’t worry about me you just keep doing what you’re doing.” Oh, please God, keep doing it. If those pink, wet pussy lips are any indication, she’s getting off on this as much as I am. I wonder what she tastes like? Melanie’s cunt clenched at the thought of licking Loraleigh’s pussy until she flowed like a river.

“Fuck it.”

“Look, I’m going to tell you something. If I’m way off base here, just tell me.”

When Loraleigh turned and wrung her hands together looking like anything but her brash self, Melanie’s stomach dropped. “Go ahead.”
Here it is. Here’s where she tells me she heard me groan and she just likes me as friend.

“Well…oh, this is harder than I thought. I’ve rehearsed it a hundred times in my head, but now that I’ve got the chance to say it, the words just won’t come out.”

“It’s okay, Loraleigh. You don’t have to tell me anything. I’ll go wait for you downstairs.” Melanie started to sit up but then Loraleigh raced over to her and knelt between her knees looking up at her, her ice blue eyes swimming in tears.

“What? No, that’s not what I mean. I’m sorry this is just so hard for me. Please stay. I want to tell you, I do, I just have to work up to it.”

What the hell does she want to tell me? If she’s not getting ready to tell me to take a hike, then what?
Loraleigh stood. “Okay.” She took a deep breath. “Okay, I can do this.” Melanie heard her say.

“Whatever it is, you can tell me Loraleigh.”

“I’m in love with you!” Loraleigh blurted out as she paced in front of Melanie.

“What?” Melanie shouted.

“Oh, that’s not how I wanted to say this.” Tears flowed out of eyes that had turned blue gray with distress.

“Loraleigh, you don’t even know me.”

“But I do. Don’t you remember? You helped me learn the flute in our freshman year. You were the only girl that was ever nice to me. I used to follow you around all the time. You teased me about it.” Melanie watched as Loraleigh’s lip curled up on one side and her right shoulder shrugged as she hugged herself with thin arms across bare breasts, the rose-brown nipples peaking out.

Melanie wracked her brains for memories of the woman in front of her. Suddenly, a memory of helping the skinny blond hold her flute just right popped into her head flashed in memory.  “Well yeah, now that you mention it I vaguely remember helping you hold your flute, and you hanging around my friends.  Are you saying that was because of me?”

(c) Copyright 2011 by Regina Paul. All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Promo Advice Tuesdays: How I've Started Using Triberr

I just recently started using Triberr but so far I really like it. Even though I'm not an official member of any tribe yet, just a follower, I'm already getting new followers on Twitter which I really love. The other thing that Triberr has encouraged me to do is actually set a schedule for my blog. I've been working on getting visitors to the old blog here for quite some time, and I've already seen a spike since I joined Triberr and that's without being a member yet. Not sure how that happened except that all my posts are automatically tweeted as soon as they're posted so I suspect what's happening is that people I've shared on Triberr are seeing the posts on my Twitter account and visiting. Not that I care how it's happening, more visitors equals more readers and that's always good for this author!

If you're only now just hearing about Triberr, let me tell you this is one of the easiest ways to help get traffic to your author's website that I've ever seen. I've never been particularly super active on Facebook, or Twitter for that matter due to my time constraints but in only visiting Triberr for about ten minutes today I'm starting to see results. If you're an author and want more visitors to your blog then I highly recommend Triberr. This is most definitely the way to go. If you have a Twitter or Facebook account and blog then you can also use Triberr and then just visit in for ten minutes each day to help drive traffic to your blog. Trust me it works! I highly recommend joining Triberr if you're an author. Want to learn more? Check out the video below.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Manic Mondays: What I hate about Monday....And What I Plan on Doing About That...

Photo from Stock Xchng
I'm working on this, I really am...not hating Mondays I mean. I mean lets face it, I'd rather be writing, reading, vegging in front of the TV or any number of other things than getting up on Monday to go to the day job.  The dreaded day job. I guess I shouldn't say dreaded, I actually do love my day job, it's just the thought initially of having to get up early and go to work that bugs me. Mondays have always been hard for me, funny thing is even when I have a Monday off which is rare, then it becomes Tuesday that I somehow hate. Pretty funny huh?

I'm sure I'm not the only one who isn't enamored of Mondays. Fortunately, there are things you can do to get past the whole Monday thing, at least I'm working on it. So, here's my plan for what it's worth:

Step One: Don't turn off the alarm clock and then crawl back into bed, pull the covers over my head and pretend it's not Monday. Yeah, so have a problem with that one. This is my usual routine then I wind up waking up ten or fifteen minutes later in a panic and trying to rush around and get my shower, make my lunch and run out the door. So not fun. So, I'm working on actually getting up when the alarm goes off.

Step 2: Start my day out with yoga and tapping instead of running around. While I'm sure most of you know what yoga is, you may not know what tapping is. You can find out more about this great stress reducer and problem solver that only takes about five or ten minutes to do each day by visiting here.

Step 3: Write 500 words before I get in the shower. Yeah, so far I haven't got this far yet. I usually get so caught up in my yoga or tapping that I look at the clock, screech and start running around again, but at least it's a calm running around this time. LOL I think I need to get up about twenty minutes earlier to pull this one off effectively.

Step 4: Leave the house five minutes earlier so I'm not running to catch the bus that's pulling up to my stop just as I run across the street madly waving my hand and hoping someone on the bus or the bus driver actually sees me and waits.

I figure if I can get these four things done on Mondays and maybe every other day of the week, then I can implement my next plan of action. Actually being able to put together some sort of schedule for my life using a calendar. I'm working  hard on time management these days, but I also don't want to get so wrapped up in it that I don't have any fun. That's bad too. Boy this being an author, working a day job, and having a life is hard!

Got some tips for surviving the Monday morning blahs? Feel free to post and comment. I love getting comments!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Excerpt Wednesday: Excerpt from No Place to Run...

Lin Chen stared out at the ever increasing blizzard wondering where she could possibly find shelter in this flat, treeless land. Snow was almost unheard of in her native Taiwan, although she could remember seeing a snow flurry or two when visiting her relatives in the mountains, but that was years ago, and nothing like what she was seeing now. 

Everything around her was covered in a white blanket, and strong winds were catching what was falling from the sky and blowing it at an angle giving the appearance of a curtain at an open window being blown to the side to give the occasional glimpse of what was outside it.

I have to find shelter. Ancestors I need shelter, please help me find some. The words were whispered only in the quiet of her mind but she knew from past experience once she thought the words, help would come.

Lin slowed her car to a crawl trying to see through the blowing snow if there was a house, a business, anywhere that she might ask for shelter. Suddenly the wheel wrenched sharply to the right causing the car’s back end to fishtail for a second on the icy road before she again regained control. Were those lights? 

Creeping forward her foot barely touching the gas pedal, not even knowing if she was on a road, although it seemed to be one, Lin moved closer and closer to what she was now convinced were lights.

Finally a sign with rotating round lights came into view. “Prairie Knights Casino and Resort.” Lin read out loud to herself and sighed with relief. She had seen a sign advertising this casino earlier and she knew from that it was run by one of the local American Indian tribes. 

Lin pushed strands of long inky black hair out of the way and carefully pulled into the parking lot. Visibility was still just about nil but because of the storm the lot wasn't that full and she was able to find a parking space near the front door once she located it.

She switched off the ignition and shivered. I’m thousands of miles from home, there is no way he can find me. She thought to herself, but she was well aware that her ex-husband was looking for her. Her cousin had left a voicemail on her cell phone telling her he had visited their small village looking for her. But I was already long gone by that time.

Lin tightened the belt on the stylish coat and pulled the collar up so that it curled around her lower face. She dropped the keys into her purse and reached for the door handle, turning it then shoving the door open. 

A blast of icy wind hit her square in the face and she pulled the collar tighter around her face, shut the door and set the alarm before heading for the glass doors she could see several feet ahead of her. The heels of her boots slid on the slick surface of the snow-covered asphalt and she would have fallen down if a strong hand hadn’t gripped her elbow.
“Easy there.” A mellow voice murmured. 

Lin startled nearly knocking them both off balance again when she heard a male voice speaking to her. Fear coated the blood that ran through her veins. Although she knew that not all men were violent, five years with an abuser, a man she had thought she could trust had changed her. It took everything she had not to jerk away from the gentle grasp. 

As though sensing her fear, the man let go and moved back. “Are you alright, Miss?” He asked and Lin realized she’d been standing there trembling in his grasp for a moment longer than she had realized.

“I am fine. Thank you for your assistance.” Her voice wobbled with the stilted words, as she bowed her head slightly in his direction. English had never been easy for her, but she was glad now that her grandfather had insisted that she learn it. She could not even imagine the nightmare of trying to traverse America with no understanding of the language. Most Americans while they seemed pleasant enough sometimes didn’t have any patience for those who did not speak or understand their language.

“You’re welcome.” The man replied easily. 

When Lin finally looked up at her rescuer all she could see was two eyes as black as onyx framed by silky black lashes staring out from the hood of his dark blue ski parka. He had a scarf wrapped around the lower half of his face and he’d tucked his hands into his pockets.

“Let’s go inside where it’s warm.” He finally said after letting her look her fill.

Lin nodded and began heading in the direction of the lights again, the man shortening the strides of his long legs to match hers. He just wants to make sure I don’t fall. She told herself nervously. 

The man was tall and big boned she could tell. Her head wouldn’t even reach his shoulder were she to stand close to him. A cold chill raced down her spine as she thought of how easy it would be for such a large man to hurt a woman. She would have no chance against him if he were to decide he wanted something from her she was unwilling to give. Unconsciously she began walking faster putting as much distance between them as she could. Before she could even reach the door waves of heat flashed through her body, and her chest tightened to the point that it felt as though she couldn’t breath. Her thoughts became a jumble and she realized belatedly that the meeting with the stranger had triggered a panic attack. Seeing a bench Lin sat down and closed her eyes and began breathing deeply and slowly, in and out. Bai is not here. The man that helped me is not Bai. In all likelihood he is a good man. Bai was sick, insane, and he’s not here now. Just keep breathing and you’ll be fine.

(c) Copyright 2011 by Regina Paul. All Rights Reserved.