Author's Page

May 20, 2017

I am considering writing a book about a woman who struggles with weight and all the baggage that comes with being overweight.  Yeah, I know, it's been done before.  Still there is something about a women who yearns for what seems impossible, like a man who loves her just the way she is, that tugs on the hearts strings.  The trick is to make her strong rather than pathetic.  Easier said than done, because our society has us brainwashed into thinking that fat people are fat because the have no self-control when it comes to eating.  Yeah, whatever.

I have been researching a few of the more popular diet changes recommended for people who have weight issues. Logically, I know that losing weight is about calories, intake and output--for the average person.  Don't give me any grief over this, but it is true that there are conditions that exist which actually make it virtually impossible to lose weight, while insuring that gaining weight requires nothing more than eating a normal diet. Not overeating like many people believe.  Just eating.  The amount of food isn't the issue.  The type of food, or the correct combination of foods, or some internal imbalance,makes the difference.  Unfortunately, there is no one size fits all diet plan.  Each person has to find his/her own ratio of diet and exercise. 

A few of the more popular solutions are dietitian, weight loss clinics, diet pills, and/or a personal trainer.  Let's see.  A dietitian could help, but they tend to be expensive, as are personal trainers.  Weight clinics are pretty rigid in their guidelines and any deviation from their prescribed program is frowned upon. Diet pills are never a good idea because you have to stop taking them eventually and then...boom!...the weight comes back with a vengeance.  The journey to finding what works for you, and it is a journey, takes many heartbreaking, confidence deflating, depressing detours.  

Weight issues plague most of the people I know, in some form or fashion.  We live in American, after all, the land of the free and obese.  My dad, my he rest in peace, always said that eating out rather than eating at home was the number one reason so many people in out country had health issues.  He would rather go home and eat cold cornbread crumbled into a glass of milk than dine at the swankiest steak house in town.  Of course, he died from emphysema, which he contracted from smoking, so "fancy" food isn't the only that will kill you, right Dad?  Morbid thought, I know. And totally off the subject.

Back to my female...should she cut out lectins (the new rage in the diet/self-help craze), carbs, fat, or just simply try cutting calories and kill herself with over exercising. Maybe she should try cryolipolysis (fat freezing), or one of many the Facebook polutting, but oh-so-popular supplement programs that trap you with the promise: buy from me and you can become a dealer and become rich while you gain a fabulous body.  It will only cost you a bagillion dollars for your starter pack, but don't worry, you'll make the money back in no time.  Hmmm.  There is a thought...she could be blocked by her family for her multiple post on FB.  Yeah, no.

You see the dilemma?  It is more than just putting more green on your plate. I still have some research to do before I decide how she plans to attack her weight; I just know I don't want her to be one of those heroines that is skinny to the point of being emancipated, you know the ones.  The hero is always pushing them to eat, and they make a valiant effort but can only manage to eat a bite or two before pushing the plate away.  This isn't a tirade against skinny people, just a reality check.  If fictional women can only be sexy when they are so thin their ribs show, there are a lot of women in the world who will have a difficult time relating to them. Yes, my hand is in the air like Horshack on Welcome Back, Kotter.


Ah, well.  Life is about finding a balance, right.  I'll let this idea percolate a little while.  When it feels right, I'll introduce my heroine and find her an appropriate HEA, and most importantly a hero that loves her in all the phases of her battle against the bulge.

Keep the faith,

Dee     


January 12, 2017


No snow in Texas today, even though, just a few days ago, Monday I think it was, every state in the continental United States had snow on the ground except Florida.  That snow barely dipped down into the Lone Star state, expending its frozen coldness on the panhandle counties.  The vast majority of Texas had no idea that our state had snow on the ground anywhere.  Okay, that is not quite true, we do have televisions and know what is going on in the other forty-nine state, but as are most people, we are more concerned with what is going on outside our own front door. 
When you live in South Texas, winter is a hit and miss event.  There are many days of balmy, spring-like weather interspersed with quick dips in temperature that have us all dragging out our coats, scarves and mittens.  The scene behind these screaming red words is so far removed from our winter experience the snowy landscape might as well exist on another planet.  The weatherman will tease us with the promise of a few snow flurries, but Mother Nature rarely makes good on the promises of men.  Ice, yes.  We do get a bit of ice.  Snow, only once in a dozen blue moons.
Do I miss waking up and finding the world blanketed by a glistening, soft, but oh so cold layer of the fluffy white stuff?  Occasionally.  Do I miss the brain numbing cold that goes with it?  Never.  Since cold and snow have a symbiotic relationship, I’ll take the balmy winter with the promise of a few flakes of snow that never quite happen, thank you, Mother Nature.  However, I do regret that my I-am-all-boy-hear-me-roar-like-a-lion-guard grandson will likely never make a snowman in his front yard, experience the deliciousness of homemade snow ice cream, or have a snowball ambush waiting when his dad comes home from work.  Of course, he lives close enough to the Gulf to spend a good part of his summer playing in the surf and making sand castles.  Like most things, it’s a trade-off.  A trade-off I can live with, despite the year-round mosquitoes.

Keep the faith,

Dee
☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃☃


December 18, 2016



I'm fixing to step up on my soapbox, so be warned: 

First, asking for reviews is not, I repeat IS NOT,  an open invitation to TROLLS.  If you don't like a book, and feel compelled to share your opinion with the world, a simple I did not like this book or even I hated it with a word or two that explains your opinion will get your point across.  
Second, the review should be about the book.  Trashing an author because he/she wrote something you didn't like is petty.  
And finally, adding bad reviews to books out of spite or because you get a kick out of being nasty is a form of cyber bullying.  Get over yourself.  Authors are people after all and despite the old playground taunt--words do hurt.  Most of the time they hurt worse than broken bones.  Just saying. 

Why do authors crave reviews? 

25 reviews--Amazon shares the book in the "people who bought this book also bought" section.

50 reviews--Amazon spotlights the book and adds it to their newsletter. This is a big step up for the book.

Reviews count.  So again, I ask you to consider writing an honest review that will guide future readers who might be thinking about reading the book.

Keep the faith,

Dee

This post was inspired by WA Bell's tweet.  I posted his tweet in the side bar.   I did some research and found that he is right on the money.  Give him some twitter love.

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December 16, 2016

'Tis the Season To Be Jolly


Nine days until Christmas.  I am looking around at the boxes of decorations still to be put up, the gifts to wrapped and hidden until Christmas Eve, and thinking of how much I hate taking it all down after New Years' Eve.  In fact, it such a laborious task that I have been known to leave my decorations up until February.  Yeah, I know, That's pretty pathetic.  

Dad with his Santa beard. 
Don't take that to mean that my spirit is "Grinchy."  I love the holidays, even though there are some sad memories attached to December.  As you can see in the picture, somewhere in his mid-sixties his beard and hair (what little he had left) turned white.  Kids were always asking him if he was Santa, and it tickled him.  
Both my grandmother (his mother) and my dad passed away in December. Both were 70 when they died.  Grandma passed 35 years ago, the same year my son was born.  And Dad...on the 22nd, Dad will have been gone eighteen years.  Gone but not forgotten. 
So as I begin the run to the holiday season, which for me officially begins tomorrow and is a metaphorical run not a fun run or a 5K, I find myself a little nostalgic for the family gatherings of old.  Noisy, happy, house bursting at the seam, but filled with love.  My brother and sisters would be amazed to hear that, I'm sure.  Although I won't see them for the holidays, I wish them them all a very Merry Christmas.


However you spend your holiday season, whatever this time of year means to you, I wish you peace and happiness. 

Keep the faith,

Dee 
🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟


November 30, 2016

Random thoughts on a cool but getting colder November night.

The hardest part of writing is dialogue. At least for me, it is. I’ll admit that I am a bit of a perfectionist, but I want my dialogue to flow naturally and seem like you, the reader, are eavesdropping on a real conversation between the H/h. The trick is to add enough narration to give the characters’ depth without over directing the scene. Too much movement, be it smiles, hand gestures, meaningful eye contact or eye rolls makes the work seem contrived—which it is, but it should feel like it is. 

Which brings me to my second thought for the evening. Each character has to have those quirks that are uniquely his/her own, and some of those quirks are speech related. More to the point, what we say and how we say it is part of the total package. Because let’s face it folks, we all same many of the same phrases or as sophisticated folks like to say clichΓ©s. We've heard them all our lives, we repeat them in our speech, and they fit comfortably into our lives. If you didn’t hear them all the time, then they wouldn’t sound familiar to us--like people that we know.

The use of clichΓ©s once was highly discouraged, but more and more authors are peppering them in their dialogue, calling them truisms rather than clichΓ©s. Sometimes, the clichΓ© is the best fit for the scene and making up something else adds a slightly bizarre feel to a story. As the reader, I don’t want you, my reader, to say "Okay...that was weird. Who says that anyway?"
Take this excerpt for example:
Sally looked around her in dismay. Could things get any worse? "What happened?" she asked, her voice pitched low so it wouldn't carry beyond her assistant. "I only stepped out for a second." Her wounded expression surveyed the room, aghast out the enormity of the mess. "I come back and flying monkeys are raining fiery poop bombs everywhere." Lifting her hands in a gesture of helpless fury, she felt her eyes drawn across the room to the man leaning against the door jam leading to his office, his gloating expression further ignited her temper. Jason. Somehow she knew he was behind the chaos.
When I am the reader, I find myself thinking, hmmm...five will get you ten the author meant “I come back, and everything has gone to hell in a handbag." So, why didn’t he/she just say that? Everyone knows what to hell in a handbag means. No one could ever say flying monkeys raining fiery poop bombs with a straight face, although coming back to FMRFPB, you know like FUBAR, even ifyou don't know what it means, you know that that things have gone very wrong. FMRFPB.  FUBAR. I am sitting here sounding out both acronyms, and I am going to have to retract my former statement.  FMRFPB just sounds like something that should be left in the restroom.  So, why clutter up an otherwise great story with weird phrases that leave the reader scratching his/her head and wondering WTH!?! Reaching too hard to avoid a clichΓ© is as bad, if not worse, than just using the clichΓ©, oh excuse me, truism, and getting on with the story.

Well, that’s what I am struggling with in my writing at the moment, I’d better get back too it.

Footnote. Some of you may be wonder why I put an iris with this post about dialogue. It was one of my mother-in-laws favorite flowers. Today would have been her 81st birthday. It seemed a fitting tribute to her.

Keep the faith,

Dee


πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†πŸ”†

July 9, 2016

Good news.  Books 1 and 2 of the @the Double D series are live again.  I took some time to polish them up.  If you have the books already, your Kindle should automatically give you the most recent version.  That is if you have your Kindle set to upload updates.

If you haven't bought them, get your copy of KISS ME SENSELESS and KISS ME STUPID today.

Keep the faith,
Dee Strawbridge


Welcome to A Little Bit of Miller


December 1, 2015

Today is one of those days that sort of hides in the pages of history.  Several historic events share this day, yet the date is overshadowed by the event, unlike Pearl Harbor, where the date (December 7) is as infamous as the event.  I see you won't believe me until I show you proof.  Okay, here is one:  in 1955 on December 1st, Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on a bus.  I see that you are nodding your head.  Shock waves from this single event are still rippling through our society.  On December, 1969 the U.S. Government holds the first draft lottery since WWII, and thousands of lives were forever alter by a war that ended up being an American nightmare.  Ah, I have your attention now.  I could go on all night, but I'll leave you with this final event-- Amy Fisher sentenced 5-15 yrs for shooting Mary Jo Buttafuoco.  Now that really rocked out world, did it not.  So now you know.  It also makes you think, as you stand in front of the mirror each morning, you have no idea what might transpire or what part you might play in history.  For most of us, history is dull ready, but I'm pretty sure Rosa Parks didn't set out to change the world.  

Keep the faith,
Dee Strawbridge

November 30, 2015

Today is my mother-in-law's birthday.  It is a bittersweet day for her family.  Last May she left the hospital and wasn't expected to live more than a few weeks.  She and my mother went into the hospital  on the same day.  Because her condition requires round the clock care, her sons made the difficult decision to put her in a nursing home.  Now six months later, she is still hanging in there.  Alive, but not really living much of a life.  She drifts in and out of consciousness.  Sometimes she can carry on a conversation.  Sometimes she just cries because she is in pain.  Her doctor has no idea how she has lived this long, and continues to caution her sons that she could pass at any moment.  Despite the sadness that shrouds this day, I want to wish her a very happy birthday.


Audrey Laverne



September 5, 2015

Has it really only been a month since I posted something. It seems like years.  The school year is underway, and I'm almost at the point where I feel like I can take a deep breath and relax a minute.  At the moment I am looking forward to cooler weather--anything below ninety would be great.  Plus I am itching to get my schedule regulated so I can get back to writing on a regular basis.  Living in a travel trailer is an adventure for sure, but kind of fun.  It takes me back to the early days of our marriage when we camped out a lot.  We've yet to get in any fishing, but it's still a little hot for me to enjoy fishing.  

Keep the faith,

Dee Kay Strawbridge

July 22, 2013.
 Three weeks until school starts.  I am starting to panic.  We're moving to a new city, a rather large one at that and starting a new job.  After fourteen years at the old one, suddenly I will be the one who doesn't have a clue.  A daunting thought.  I wonder how easy it is to go from mentor to mentee.  I guess I'll find out August 14th.  Crazy to be uprooting and moving, especially to live in a travel trailer.  YIKES!  But it's not all bad.  The new job pays better.  I'll be closer to my son and grandson.  And when I don't feel like cooking, there are more than six restaurants to choose from.  I am certainly looking forward to that!
Keep the faith,
Dee Kay Strawbridge
JULY 19, 2015


What inspires you? 


Note:  While you are reading this, imagine you are listening to Fly by Maddie & Tae, because I am listening to their song as I am writing this post. 


I was asked this question (What inspires you as a writer?) the other day, and it got me to thinking.  The answer is not as clear cut as you might assume.  Yes, when I see a baby’s smile, experience an act of kindness, hear a child’s unvarnished truth, or witness an expression of true love, I am touched and inspired to be a better person.  That inspiration does not have anything to do with my writing.  Being a better person involves how I treat others and the footprint I leave as I walk towards life’s sunset.  It is my true legacy.  Writing is a small part of that journey.  Small but necessary to my sanity.  I do not have to write to be a better person.  In truth, I am not inspired to write.  Writing is a compulsion.  It is something that comes from a place inside me that refuses to be silenced.   But the question is out there, and I have been stewing on it for a few days.  Today, while researching the background for a story, I found this quote.  While  not my words, this Edison quote sums up my answer far better than I can. 





 I find it comforting and inspiring  to know that if I just keep at my writing long enough, I will figure it all out.



Keep the faith,

Dee Kay Strawbridge



July 7, 2015

I owe a huge thanks to the person, be it male or female responsible of the correct date on my computer.  In the summer it is impossible for me to keep up with the date.  I don't know if that has anything to do with the fact that during the school year I am hyper-aware of dates or just the general laziness that takes over once the final bell rings.  This summer has been a little unusual.  My hubby and I are moving.  Whose insane idea was that?  The move includes a new job (Yikes!), living in a travel trailer for a few months (double Yikes!), and being closer to my son and grandson.  Oh yeah, I am the one who suggested this move.  It will all be worth it when it is over, but until then I am pulling my hair out one gray strand at a time.  My hubby and I have had some crazy adventures together, but this might just turn out to be the craziest.  On top of all this,  my desktop computer crashed, and I have been frantically trying to figure out how to recover the files--yeah, the files I should have backed up.  Actually, I had been very good about backing up my writing until this past week and now...a whole week's worth of
writing zap by the evil genie that lives in my hard drive.  I have never been defeated by an evil genie before, so I have faith I will recover the files I need.  In the meantime, I am backing up my backups.  Nothing like nailing the barn door closed after the cows have escaped.

Keep the faith,
Dee
Image of genie courtesy of digitalphotos at freedigitalphotos.net

June 29, 2015

Today is a slow day.  I just can't seem to get my act together.  Most days I blame my family for interrupting me while I am writing, but they are all out and about, so I can't use them as an excuse.  Sometimes there is just too much static in my brain for me to produce anything that makes sense.  Anyone else out there have this problem?  How do you solve it?  Or are you like me, sitting at the computer playing Candy Crush.  And if Candy Crush wasn't bad enough, now they have C andy Crush Soda.  Two of the most useless games ever, but so addictive.  Not to sound like Scarlett O'Hara, but I'll worry about word production (writing) tomorrow. 

Keep the faith,

Dee Kay Strawbridge


June 27, 2015

NaMoWriMo Summer Camp is in another week , as much as I hate to miss it, I think I am going to be too busy.  As my son used to say when I forced him to dig my flower beds during spring break, "This is supposed to be my vacation."   Oh, well, some summers are just like that.  Maybe I'll be able to get in a few thousand words.  

Keep the faith,
Dee Kay Strawbridge


June 18, 2015

I know that this page is supposed to be about my journey as a writer.  But today my mind in not on writing, exactly.  It is more on the reason that I haven't been able to write this week.  You see, my normally quiet and peace house has been filled with laughter, giggles, playful wrestling, and the sound of little feet stomp-running.  Why is any of this noteworthy.  Well...my children are grown.  I say that with pride, joy, and sense of relief that we survived the experience.  When your children are small you are so caught up on trying to make it from day to day, sometimes it is hard to enjoy the moments that you have with them.  But when they become adults, you yearn to have a few of those years back.  You miss having them at home with you, knowing all the little things that go on in their lives.  It doesn't matter how wonderful your relationship remains, it isn't the same, nor should it be.  Children need to be self-sufficient adults. Even though I was fortunate enough to be able to stay at home with them for a while, I know that there were days when I got swallowed up by the day to day minutia that come with being a wife and mother.  Don't get the wrong idea, I am not an empty nester, sitting at home and trying to manipulate my children with guilt.  When the kids left home, I finished my college degree and became a teacher.  It is a very consuming profession which kept me from hounding my kids about grandchildren.  Now, thanks to my son and daughter-in-law, I have a grandson.  He is two and a half.  Being around him is like plugging into a socket of pure joy.  I had forgotten what it was like to have a toddler in the house, and not just any toddler, but one that likes to toddle at the speed of light.  My grandson is a non-stop full-speed-ahead boy.  B. O. Y.  He spent a week with us while his parents were moving to their new house.  What a lovely treat!  While it's true, I didn't get much writing done because I didn't want to miss a second of the time he was here, I gained so much from his visit.  Not the least of which was a deeper pride in my son who has grown up to be a phenonimal dad. 

Keep the faith,
Dee Kay Strawbridge


June 10, 2015

June is Alzheimer's and Brain AwarenessMonth

Alzheimer’s is very personal to me.  My mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s nine years ago.  This disease robbed her of all her memories and left her adrift in a sea of confusion.  For Mom, it wasn’t a slow slide into Alzheimer’s but a rapid descent.   For those who loved her, it was akin to the blink of an eye.   It has been eight years since I had a conversation with my mother.  Eight long years that she was here and not here at the same time. She passed away April 27th of this year.  While Alzheimer’s didn’t take her life, it did make her last years on this earth a journey she had to walk alone.  I don’t mean to imply that she was unhappy, exactly.  During the years lost to Alzheimer’s, she found beauty in everything.  She sang as if she were gifted with the voice of an angel.  She welcomed everyone who came to visit with a graciousness that came from the heart.  And there were moments that she would connect with my sisters and brothers.  The tragedy is that in those last eight years she missed many family milestones—not the least of which was the birth of five great-grandchildren, and more’s the pity, they missed knowing their great-grandmother--a beautiful, intelligent woman full of humor and wit.  
 I am dedicating this post to my mom, 
Theresa Erlyne Strawbridge.
Mom (on the left) and her sister. circa 1948.  Both of these wonderful women suffered from Alzheimer's. 

Be sure to visit my Supporting Other Authors page and read about 5 Amazing ladies who share their knowledge of Alzheimer's in 5 very touching stories.


Keep the faith,

Dee Kay Strawbridge



June 8, 2015

Officially my first day of summer vaca.  Heading to Houston to pick up my Gbaby.  Not so great from a writing standpoint, but I love having the little guy around.  As my husband is prone to say, "Now I know why they are called grandkids."  We have lots of plans for the week to come, but I am going to try to sneak in some writing time each day. 

Keep the faith,
Dee Kay Strawbridge


May 31, 2015

Have you ever had one of those day when you did that you didn't think you could do?  Well, today was one of those days for me.  I am really bad to piddle with things that I probably would be better off leaving alone.  Okay, not probably, but definately.  I have been tinkering with my blog for a week or so, playing around with the design.  Using the copy and paste function, I have been able to add a few new gadgets or widgets, whatever you call them.  I am not computer literate, not really.  When I want to learn something (a new program or a new feature), I just sit down and play around until I figure things out.  Saturday, I was trying to add a floating share bar to my blog.  Instead of adding the bar, I removed the share bar at the end of each tweet.  It just disappeared.  Using the help feature got me nowhere.  I didn't know what I had done to erase it, so I had no idea how to get it back. Subbornness runs in my family, and I got a double dose of it.  I refused to let some oddly written commands defeat me.  Armed with my mouse, access to Google, and my inate toggling ability, I set out to fix my mistake.  And fix it I did.  I cut and pasted away, like I knew what I was doing until my blog feed was replaced with an error message. Months of hard work gone in the blink of an eye, and me sitting there staring at the screen ready to scream.  Instead of screaming, I typed the error message into my Google search bar. Amazingly enough, I am not the only person to have piddle where I should not have.  It took me ten links to find one that I could understand.  Once I understood what to do--track down the lines of code I had entered into the HTML in the wrong place and move it to the right place--I had my blog back in no time.  Now, I just have to work on getting that floating share bar install.  Don't think I have given up on it. 

I knew you could do it!
Keep the faith,
Dee Kay Strawbridge 


Okay, Okay.  One more FREE day.  
Memorial Day, May 25, 2015

Buy Kiss Me Senseless for $0.00.  You can't beat that price.






FREE, TWO DAYS ONLY

MAY 23 AND 24



Climbing the charts.  Keep it going!!!


May 22, 2015

REVIEWS ANYONE?

If you spend much time on Facebook, and nearly every one does these days, a few things become crystal clear.  

  • First, authors need reviews.  Okay, let me amend that statement--authors need good reviews.  They don't have to be 5 stars reviews although 5 star reviews are nice, any

    review will do.  A well-rounded stable of reviews should include some 4 star reviews and even a few 3s, 2s, and 1s are acceptable as long as there aren't too many of them.  I have to admit that the 1s sting...a lot.  
     It seems that the number of reviews you have on a book gives it more value when it comes to promotions.  
  • Second, reviews are hard to come by for most authors.  They beg, plead, swap, buy, and who knows what else to get reviews.  
  • Third, you should be careful who you offer to review because your honest opinion might not be appreciated unless it comes with a heap of praise and a 5 star review.  
  • Furthermore, there are review trolls.  That's right, trolls.  People who get their jollies writing scathing reviews of books and attaching a single star to their review.  Why?  Jealously and revenge seems to be the general consensus as to why trolls feel the need to knock someone else down.  Appearantly the trolls are authors themselves, and to avoid the responsibility for their actions, they write these ugly reviews under a different name giving them a certain amount of anonymity.  
  • Finally, should you get a review, it can be voted up or voted down.  Hmmm!  
All of this is too complicated for me.  I just want to write, publish, write some more, publish again, write some more, publish again...you get the message.  Do I want people to read my books?  Yes.  Would I like some reviews?  Yes, but I can wait.  I am still learning my craft.  Although I have written for years, for many different purposes, writing to publish for my the world at large to read is vastly different than writing academic papers.    As I go through the daily grind common to writers, I remind myself of the advice that convinced me that I should go ahead and jump in the publishing waters.
  1. Get your work into print.  Don't wait for it to be perfect.  You can always make corrections, and the majority of your readers will be forgiving.  He didn't mention that some readers would take great pleasure in pointing out your mistakes.
  2. More is, well, more.  The more books you have for sale, the more likely you are to sell your books. So write, write, write.
  3. Don't expect to make money until you have at least 7 books published.  Readers are more likely to download authors who have a large selection of titles to choose from.
Good advise?  I hope so.  By keeping my focus on those three points, I find I am able to keep moving forward.  The final piece of advice I took from the book?  Because it is more difficult to sell ebooks now than it was six years ago, the authors that persist will be the authors who eventually take home the big money.  Sign me up.  

Keep the faith,
Dee Kay Strawbridge 




May 17, 2015

I’m taking a break from editing to update Kiss Me Senseless on Wattpad.  If you haven't checked it out, you should.  Erlyne and Finnley's story will jerk on your heart strings.

 My editor tells me that she wants to slap Kenny (the brother) silly through most of the book.  That’s good, right? 

As you know, I had to push back the release because of family matters.  Ironically, this story is dedicated to my mother, Erlyne Strawbridge, and she passed away on the day I had originally planned on posting the story (4/27/15).  When I began the story back in December, I had no idea the emotional journey it would take me on.  It is like I have had my mother living in my head every day for six months.  The main character isn’t based on anything that happened in Mom’s life, but I did find myself thinking about Mom and what she would have said or done in a similar situation.  It was comforting to me, these musings, because Mom had Alzheimer’s and hasn’t recognized any of her children for better than five years.  Do I miss her?  Absolutely.  But I have missed her every single day since her brain began to lose its ability to remember things, places, and people.  So yes, Kiss Me Cross-eyed has been a journey for me, at times sad and at times joyous, but a journey that has helped me say goodbye to a very special lady.
  


I used a picture of Mom and Dad on the post At the Corner of Beryl and Wardley.  That is such a cool title, I am tempted to write a story about Erlyne’s grandmother just so I can use that title.  Hmmm.  Wattpad has a Mothers’ Day challenge, maybe I should give it a shot.


Life is often a strange combination of coincidences that we sometimes try to connect to find a greater meaning than exists within these random events.  The date of my mother's passing and the date of my publishing this book have no cosmic connection, but I like to think Mom would have been tickled to know that she was my muse. 


 However, she would have told me to change the title.  “You young people are too obsessed with kissing,” she would have said.  “I am telling you right now, any man who thinks he is going to stick his tongue in my mouth is going to lose a good portion of his tongue.”  That’s my mom for you.  A beautiful, precious person who is now in heaven with Jesus and the angels.  


The Official Blog Of the Double D Series.




April 27, 2015

Today, Faith Blum, author of Hymns of the West Series, begins her blog tour to introduce her latest book, Amazing Grace.  I have posted a link to the full schedule for the blog tour to the left and the links to her social media below. On May 14th, I will spotlight her book her on ALittleBitOfMiller. Show her some love and speed on over to her blog today and see what she has to say about Amazing Grace.




April 25, 2015

Winner of the free copy of Kiss Me Cross-eyed is
Deminleigha


Congrat!! 


April 19, 2015

Just sitting here listening to music and the rain.  Not a bad way to end the day.  I should be headed to bed because I have to work in the morning, but I tend to be a bit of an insomniac.  My hubby quotes frightening stats all the time about the perils of not getting enough sleep.  Seems it jeopardizes your health, keeps your from losing weight, and makes you grumpy.  I hear him, I really do.  I appreciate his concern, but my brain never shuts off, so falling asleep proves a bit of a problem from time to time.  Like now.  I am instead of sawing logs, I am working out the kinks of the Eaton sisters' stories (Kiss Me Cross-eyed).  Hoping to release the first one around the first of June.  It will be the first of a short series of novellas.  I am really excited about getting to know each Eaton sister better.  Greenlea Gracie and Harper Hampton's story is also coming along (Kiss Me Bonkers), and I hope to have it finished by August.  Along with all that, I have most of the plot line for Rusty Blalock's  story  (Midnight Kiss) fleshed out.  Lots of irons in the fire these days.  Should make for a few more sleepless night.  Oh well, sleep is highly overrated anyway.  

Keep the faith,

Dee Strawbridge


  A look at the new book covers.  Hoping to go live with them on 4-25-15 when Kiss Me Cross-eyed is released.








Book 1 and Book 2: Image courtesy of marin at freedigitalphotos.net
Book 3: Image courtesy of photostock at freedigitalphotos.net



               KISS ME STUPID is FREE
  April 5-9
 Click the link below to download it today.

April 9, 2015


Image courtsey of Salvatore Vuono at freedigitalphotos.net
It seems every spring, life gets hectic and twenty-four hours in simply not enough time to get everything done.  Every year is the same. I look for ways work more efficiently and to simplify my life, which oddly enough wastes time, not to mention creates more work for me.  A saying about old dogs comes to mind here.  As I sit here and write this,  I know I should just power through these months (March, April, and May) because once June rolls around, most of the chaos goes away. Will I do that?  Nope.  I will work my tail off trying to find a way to clear out the clutter and come up with an easier, more efficient way to get everything done.  It occured to me today that what I need is A Roll Over Minutes Plan.  This plan would allow me to save my unused mintues in a time bank for the spring.  This bank would give me those extras hours that I need.  You know, like a cell phone plan.  I could take those hours from the late fall and winter, when cabin fever sets in and I am looking for things to do to keep from going crazy, and store them up for the spring.  Okay, I'm sold.  Now, w

ho do I see about getting signed up for this RollOver Fall to Spring Plan? 

Keep the faith,

Dee





April 5, 2015

Book Number 4 of my series @the Double D is officially in the works.  The editing faze for Kiss Me Cross-Eyed is on-going, but I am hoping to have it live on Amazon by April 15th.  Wish me luck.  The working title for Book 4, which could change, is Kiss Me Bonkers.  Don't you just love it? I chose this title because I like the way it sounds.  It is an old fashion word that will be fun to work into this story between rancher, Harper "H.J." Hampton and graphic artist, Greenlea Gracie. Along with the romance between Greenlea and H.J., you will meet Hampton boys--T.J., R.J., and C.J.  Three teenage boys that are ready to cut loose and have some fun. Some of your favorites from Books 1, 2, and 3 will be back as well.  If you would like a sneak peak at the book, keep and eye out for it to appear in Wattpad.  I will post chapters as I finish them. 

Keep the faith

Dee Strawbridge




April 3, 2015

April 5th I have a new campaign starting on bknights promoting Kiss Me Stupid.  The book is free from April 5th to April 12th.  Kiss Me Stupid, Book 2 of the @the Double D Series is the book that began the whole series.  It took me fourteen months to finish.  Okay, if I count the actual time I spent writing, it took four months with ten months in between the initial writing burst and the final painful hours when I chained myself to the computer and forced myself to finish the story.  Kiss Me Stupid began as a NaNoWriMo writing project, in July 2014--which I did not finish because I couldn't make myself sit down and write everyday.  It might have been the pressure of meeting a strict goal, or more likely, the idea that I had to share my writing with others (always very difficult for me), that made this first attempt at completing NaNoWriMo camp unsuccessful. I guess the whys and wherefores are not important, since I did finish the novel, eventually.  After completing Kiss Me Stupid, I went back and finished Kiss Me Senseless, originally titled Back in the Saddle.  While writing it, I decided to make the books part of a series about the people in Miller, Texas.  As of last Saturday, I finished Kiss Me Cross-eyed, the third book in the series.

What's the point of all this blather?  I signed up for the April 2015 NaNoWriMo writing camp.  Hopefully I will be more successful this year.  I am planning on writing the first novella in a mini-series about Erlyne Eaton's (Kiss Me Cross-eyed) sisters.  Up first--Allie. Cross your fingers and wish me luck.  Thirty days to write 50,000 words.  That is about 1,700 words a day.  Piece of cake, right?   

Keep the faith,

Dee Kay Strawbridge



March 28, 2015

One of the things that I find most challenging when writing is striking a balance in presenting the physical traits of my main characters.  The images in my head are so clear I tend to want to describe each character in great detail--right down to the tiny black mole on his back just under the left shoulder blade.  As a reader, however, I want the author to give me enough information to allow me to form my own mental movie of the story.  When books are made into movies, I am often disappointed with the actor that is chosen to play the part (parts) because they are so very different from my own vision.  In my books I try to strike a balance, so the reader knows enough to envision each character, but my description does not interfere with the reader's imagination--half the fun of reading is letting your imagination get swept up in the story.  With that in mind, I decided to give you an idea of  the actors that I feel would best represent the character in my book, not that I am implying that my books are being considered for a movie deal (Wouldn't that be so cool?  But I think I have a better chance of winning the lottery, and I don't buy lottery tickets.).  So, without further ado, here are the Men of Miller, Texas.  I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.

Keep the faith,

Dee Strawbridge


From Book 1: Kiss Me Senseless's Benjamin David Black at 25.  In the story, he is ten years older and has dark blue eyes. It's not mystery how this Miller hottie captivated Alden's heart from the moment she first met him. 
  
From Book 2: Kiss Me Stupid's Dean Kendall Dillard.  Dean's hair is darker, almost black, and he sports a fuller beard.  Still, it is easy to see why Chloe found him irresistible. 


From Book 3: Kiss Me Cross-Eyed's Finnley Wade Farrell.  The boy next door, Numero Uno, with the melted caramel eyes all grown up and causing the girl next door #3, Erlyne, to dream of happily-ever-after.  

March 22, 2015

Today I am struggling to finish my third novel.  The ending just isn't falling into place.  It seems as if I pushing too hard--trying to force the characters to a place they don't care to go.  Like stubborn children, they are sitting mutely in the shadow of my mind, arms akimbo, glaring at me. Somehow, with no help from them, I am suppose to figure out how to bring their story to a happy ending.  Ironically, most of this book has flown from my brain to the keyboard faster than my fingers could keep up.  Now, when I am ready to put the master strokes on the end, the perfect conclusion to a story of family drama and self-discovery, I am stalled.  It is so irritating. The book is already longer than I had intended it to be, so that means major edits. But first an ending.  Which means I must just plow forwards, hoping that in the editing process I can polish the chucks of coal I am writing into diamonds. It is pressure that makes diamonds, right? 

Keep the faith,

Dee Strawbridge  



March 17, 2015

Last summer when I finally made up my mind to try this whole self published thing, I did so after reading several books on the subject.  The gist of the advice in these books. 

  1. Don't wait until your book is perfect to publish it.
  2. The more books you have published, the more successful you will be, so find everything you have ever written and get it out there.
  3. Plan to make about $100 a month on each book.  Some will make more, other less, but most will hit around $100 per month once you've established yourself. 
  4. Spend your time writing, not worrying about why your book or books are not climbing the best sellers chart.  


The problem is once you have your book on Amazon, you have to build a social media base and suddenly all your time is spent hanging out on line, looking for ways to get your book in front of more people, worrying about the reviews that people have written and obsessing about the reviews that haven't been written.  It's enough to drive a person mad.

So I am going back to writing.  After all, I didn't start this journey to become an overnight sensation.  My goal is to share my stories with others, be they few or many. I knew going in there would be a learning curve, and boy has there been.  But, social media not withstanding, the only way I can sell more stories, is to keep writing.

Keep the faith,

Dee Strawbridge  



March 15, 2015

My first blog hop.  I feel a little exposed.  I mean, it is one thing to think about inviting other people into your private space, but to actually do it--well, for me it's huge.  In theory, when I began the blog I opened the door for others to come in, but random visits here and there are not quite the same as throwing the door wide open and saying, "Come on in."  

So, fingers crossed, I hope that it is successful, for all the participants.

For me it has been a huge learning experience, and I am very thankful to the women at Clean Indie Reads for putting it together.  

Keep the faith,

Dee Strawbridge


March 8, 2015

I found the cutest little Twitter counter button for my blog.  After several frustrating attempts I figured out how to add it as a gadget.  Why do they make everything so complicated?  Or maybe a better question is, what does it take to be a born again computer whiz?  I am a writer of words not data strings.

Speaking of writing, I have been jumping track lately.  The closer I get to the end of my third novel in the @the Double D Series, the more characters I have crowding my brain.  Just last night I had to stop writing Kiss Me Cross-eyed and write the first chapter in the last novel in the series, which I have titled Kiss Me Goodbye.  I was tempted to ignore the germ of an idea when it appeared because I really need to finish Book 3, but from long experience I have learned that ignored germs die and never return. So if you were wondering why Book 13 appeared in the tabs, well now you know.  My brain is not, nor has it ever been, linear.  So, if the last book gets written concurrently with the 3rd, I'm okay with that.

Keep the faith,

Dee Strawbridge



March 4, 2015

Hooray!!! I'm down to the final pages of my new novel, Kiss Me Cross-Eyed (although it may end up with a different title before I actually publish it). This series will have 13 books eventually.  Yes, that's right, thirteen stories about the men and women of Miller, Texas.  I have them all plotted out in my head.  My problem is that each novel I write brings to life two or three new characters that seem to cry out for their stories to be told. It has been suggested that I handle this by writing companion novellas to go with each novel in the series.  

The limits of a novella send me into panic mode. Can I write a story and keep it under 50,000 words?  I really don't know.  I tend to be more wordy than that. Still, it is an idea worth considering and probably good practice.

But worrying about all that is for another day, today I am focused on celebrating my progress on this book.  I will be finished with the creative part of the book soon--my self-imposed deadline the end of next week. Then it will be editing time.  Sigh.  I'd much rather write.  But then I'd rather cook than wash dishes. Of course, finish is a relative term for me.  I have yet to force myself to call a book finished. 

I'm looking forward to the day that I can give up my day job and write full time.   

Keep the faith,

Dee Strawbridge





February 23, 2015


Made it all the way to #14 on Kindle's TOP 100 (Romance)
Reviews.  I received my first Amazon review on Book 1: Kiss Me Senseless recently.  I promoted the book through fiverr, timing it so that the last day it was free on Amazon bknights featured in on a book blog. I had a flurry of interest which was very gratifying, until I checked my ranking and saw--gasp!--a review.  The review was not wonderful, three stars.  My daughter, who keeps track of all this for me was incensed.  The reviewer commented that she loved the story, but (Isn't there always a but?) my book had too many editing errors.  (Not an actual quote, I paraphrased.)  She,my daughter, was horrified at the three star review, skipping over the fact that the reviewer said she loved the story.  She also added that she would definitely be reading more of my books. I can live with the review. Hey, editing I can fix.  I would so much rather have a review which begins with I loved the story than one that said, It was a perfectly edited book, but the story is hopeless, I will never waste my time reading this author again. 



So, to those of you who are stinging under the lash of a harsh review, I advise you to take what's constructive, and let the rest float away. See, I can say it.  Now, if I can just follow my own advice, won't life be perfect. 

I know that I am not able to edit my own work, but I will not be relying on the same editor in the future.  Lesson learned. 

Keep the faith,

Dee  


February 20, 2015

Self-promotion is HARD.  For those of you who've never had to promote yourself, trust me--IT IS HARD!!! I feel like I spend more time on my social media sites than I do writing these days.  Every time I think I have all of them covered, someone says, "Are you on _______?"  But, I have to say, thanks to the wonderful people who are part of the network of authors and readers, Kiss Me Senseless has been on Amazon's Top 100 Free Downloads (Romance)for three days now. It will be offered for FREE until 2/21/15, and I'm hoping it will climb higher on the chart. Okay, praying more than hoping.  So excited.  I've been dancing all around the house.  My hubby thinks I'm crazy, but what's new, right?

I have a new author's page:
Go Indie

Keep the faith,

Dee 


The idea for this blog came from my daughter, who thought that it might be helpful that have all the blog posts from my novels in one place so that my fans, and she is convinced that I will have millions of fans someday, can use the blog posts as a time line that helps keep the various story lines straight.  
I haven't decided who (which of the reoccurring characters) is writing the blog.  I didn't start out to make it an anonymous blog, but it just seemed to work out that way.  I can tell you that the blogger is not ready to reveal his or her identity, and may not be for a good little while.  However, I am narrowing it down to a hand full of possible suspects.  


I have to say that creating my own little world in which I get to be the puppet master is way more fun than I ever dreamed it would be.  The challenge, for me, is to make each story a stand alone story,  and also a part of a larger whole. 

Be warned though, should you be inspired to jump in the water and pen your own novel, writing is not for the faint of heart.  I am currently working on the third novel in this series, and find myself sitting up long after everyone else has gone to bed, typing away.  It is not unusual for me to sit down the next day and erase half of what I wrote the day before.  Yet I return, day after day, determined that words will not master me, but I will be their master.    


Keep the faith.

Dee 






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