Saturday, May 9, 2015

An Open Essay

I have not posted in almost two years. I know it has been long, too long. Over the last two years, so much has changed in my life and I have neglected my reading and writing. I often think of my blog, almost always with longing. This is not a typical post for me, but I need to get my thoughts out and I need to connect to what matters to me.

From the time I was a little girl, I wanted to be a writer. I wanted people to pick up a book I wrote and not be able to put it down; I wanted to be the writer people recommended to their friends.

I have a degree in English Literature. I chose this major because I love reading, because it matters to me. When I was an undergraduate, I took a position in a bank to get me through school and I have stayed in banking for 10 years, although it was not what I went to school for and not something I ever envisioned for myself. I will never regret my choices because I believe it led me to where I am today. Although I like what I do, I don't love it. Instead of feeling satisfied and accomplished, I feel drained. I want to do something I love, something that makes me feel satisfied. I want to be happy.

Driving home tonight, I had a moment of self awareness. I asked myself two important questions, who am I and what are my fundamentals. What defines me.

I believe reading is fundamental. I belive reading enables you to succeed. It opens new worlds and new ideas. It allows you to see other points of view, to disect and form opinions. Reading and analyzing literature gives you the ability to think critically and opens your mind to alternative possibilities. In short, I believe reading gives you the power to succeed.

I watched my five year old son playing today and as I sat there I thought about how I would do anything for him, I want him to be anything and do anything. Right now the world is limitless for him. Every parent should feel that hope and openness for their child. But in our society, that is not the case. Every child deserves a chance, regardless of their skin color. Children are precious, they are gifts and they deserve everything, they deserve to know they matter.

Everything that is happening in our country right now have opened up discussions about education and the lack of education in our country. Education is so important. I never want to stop learning. I have often thought about going back to school for my Masters degree but I never have for many reasons. Lately, I have been considering going back to school for my teaching certification. I have never seen myself as a teacher, but I have a deep belief that reading is fundamental, reading gives you skills that will empower you to succeed and everyone should have that opportunity.

I have been picturing myself in a classroom, talking about literature, opening students minds to possibilites. Would I be good at it? I'm scared but I also think about how exciting and satisfying it would be to help a child understand their potential because I believe every one of us has potential and it is our job as parents and educators to help a child reach their potential and give them the tools to succeed.

Change is so scary, it's a natural emotion, but I don't want it to define me. I have been thinking of my favorite poem, "The Road Not Taken". In the last year, I changed my life in a major way, but I know in my soul it was absolutely the right path and I have never looked back. I don't want to look back one day and regret not doing something I love. I don't want to get stuck because it was the easy thing to do. I've never taken the easy route in my life and why should I stop now?

From "The Road Not Taken":

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I-
I took the one less traveled by, 
And that has made all the difference.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Exciting news in the Outlander world today!



New Original Series Based on Diana Gabaldon’s International Best-Selling Novels 

From “Battlestar Galactica” Executive Producer Ronald D. Moore

Beverly Hills, Calif., July 9, 2013 – Starz in association with Sony Pictures Television has announced today that Sam Heughan will play the role of Jamie Fraser in the original series “Outlander,” adapted from Diana Gabaldon’s international best-selling books, which will premiere on STARZ in 2014. The chivalrous young Scottish warrior, Jamie Fraser, has been adored worldwide by fans of the seven-book series that has sold more than 20 million copies and has graced the New York Times best-sellers list six times.

Diana Gabaldon said, “Oh. My. God. That man is a Scot to the bone and Jamie Fraser to the heart. Having seen Sam Heughan not just act, but be Jamie, I feel immensely grateful to the production team for their painstaking attention to the soul of the story and characters."

"From the very beginning, I knew the part of Jamie Fraser would be difficult to cast,” said Executive Producer Ronald D. Moore. “I had no one in mind for the part. I knew that someone would just come into the audition and be Jamie Fraser. And that's what Sam did."

In “Outlander,” Jamie Fraser strikes up a passionate affair with Claire Randall, a married combat nurse from 1945 who is mysteriously swept back in time to 1743. Armed with sheer grit and enduring strength, he is a strapping young Scottish clan lord with a complicated past and a disarming sense of humor. He is intelligent, principled, and, by 18th century standards, educated and worldly, with a tenderness and compassion that stands out in contrast to his contemporaries. A natural leader of men, he has no political ambitions or desire for battlefield glories. Instead, he wishes to remove the price on his head and return to his family’s ancestral farm.

Sam Heughan is a graduate of the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, he was a 2003 nominee for the Laurence Olivier Award for Most Promising Performance for his work in the program. Last year, he originated the role of Batman in the DC/Warner Brothers and Waterlane production of "Batman Live," an international tour which opened at the Staples Centre in Los Angeles and went on to tour in South America and throughout Europe. In 2010, he was nominated for a British Soap Award for “Villain of the Year” for his role as Scott Neilson in the BBC soap opera "Doctors." He has also had roles in a range of television series including, "River City," "Island at War," "The Wild West," "Midsomer Murders," and, most recently, "Any Human Heart" as Lieutenant McStay. His TV movie credits include, "Breaking the Mould" for BBC Television, "A Very British Sex Scandal" for Channel 4 and "First Light" for BBC2. He was nominated for a "Grace award" for his performance as Prince Ashton, the son of Sir Roger Moore, in “A Princess for Christmas” for Hallmark Channel. His film credits include the short film Small Moments, and the feature films Alexander the Great from Macedonia and Emulsion. He will also be seen in the upcoming film Heart of Lightness. On stage, Heughan has performed at a variety of theatres in such productions as “King John,” “Romeo and Juliet,” “The Vortex,” “Hamlet,” “Macbeth,” “The Talented Mr. Ripley” and more. At the Royal Scottish Academy, Heughan starred in productions including “Crime & Punishment,” “The Seagull,” and “Prometheus Bound.” He is repped by United Talent Agency in the US and United Agents in the UK.

The series adaptation for “Outlander” will be written by Ronald D. Moore (“Battlestar Galactica,” “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine,” “Star Trek: The Next Generation”). Ronald D. Moore and Jim Kohlberg are executive producers of “Outlander,” which is produced by Tall Ship Productions, Story Mining & Supply Company and Left Bank Pictures in association with Sony Pictures Television.

The series will begin filming in Scotland this fall.

About Starz
Starz (NASDAQ: STRZA, STRZB) is a leading integrated global media and entertainment company with operating units that provide premium subscription video programming on domestic U.S. pay television channels (Starz Networks), global content distribution (Starz Distribution) and animated television and movie production (Starz Animation),

Starz Networks is a leading provider of premium subscription video programming through the flagship STARZ® and ENCORE® pay TV networks which showcase premium original programming and movies to U.S. multichannel video distributors, including cable operators, satellite television providers, and telecommunications companies. As of March 31, 2013, STARZ and ENCORE serve a combined 56.7 million subscribers, including 21.6 million at STARZ, and 35.1 million at ENCORE, making them the largest pair of premium flagship channels in the U.S. STARZ® and ENCORE®, along with Starz Networks’ third network MOVIEPLEX®, air more than 1,000 movies monthly across 17 linear networks, complemented by On Demand and authenticated online offerings through STARZ PLAY, ENCORE PLAY, and MOVIEPLEX PLAY. Starz Distribution develops, produces and acquires entertainment content, distributing it to consumers globally on DVD, digital formats and traditional television. Starz Distribution’s home video, digital media and worldwide distribution business units distribute original programming content produced by Starz, as well as entertainment content for itself and third parties. Starz Animation produces animated TV and movie content for studios, networks, distributors and audiences worldwide.

About Sony Pictures Television
Sony Pictures Television (, a Sony Pictures Entertainment company, is one of the television industry’s leading content providers. It produces and distributes programming in every genre, around the world and for a multitude of platforms. In addition to one of the industry’s largest libraries of award-winning feature films, television shows and formats, Sony Pictures Television (SPT) boasts a current program slate that includes top-rated daytime dramas and game shows, landmark off-network series, original animated series and critically acclaimed primetime dramas, comedies and telefilms. SPT has 18 wholly-owned or joint venture production companies in 15 countries outside the U.S. and also maintains offices in 32 countries. SPT’s worldwide television networks portfolio includes 124 channel feeds available in 159 countries, reaching more than 800 million households worldwide. SPT also creates original content for and manages SPE’s premium video website, Crackle. Additionally, SPT owns production company Embassy Row and is a part owner of cable channel Game Show Network (GSN), 3D channel 3net, premier horror/thriller website and VOD service FEARnet and national U.S media sales company ITN Networks, Inc. SPT advertiser sales is one of the premier national advertising sales companies and handles the commercial inventory in SPT’s syndicated series as well as in U.S. digital businesses including FEARnet, and PlayStation.

“Outlander” Online
Twitter: @Outlander_Starz - join the conversation with‎#Outlander and ‎#STARZ 

--Article originally posted on Diana Gabaldon's Facebook page. 

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Is it Tuesday yet?

Julie James's latest book Love Irresistibly hits bookstores this coming Tuesday, April 2. I've been looking forward to this since around last April, when I finished her then just released About that Night. Her books are seriously addictive. Every new release finds me rushing to the bookstore and snatching it up the day it comes out and devouring it the same day, followed by days and months of berating myself for reading too quickly that I have to wait another year to get a fresh story.

Luckily, I'm in love with all of her books and they are some of my favorite re-reads. Last week after I posted about Something about You on sale in e-book form for $1.99 here, I snuggled up with a glass of wine and my Kindle and re-acquainted myself with one of my favorite romance heroes, Jack Pallas. Of course I couldn't stop there and downloaded Practice Makes Perfect immediately and fell in love with Payton and J D all over again.

Now I'm bouncing around plotting how I can make it to the bookstore Tuesday and when I can have some quiet time with Love Irresistibly. 

Love Irresistibly (FBI / US Attorney, #4)

A former football star and one of Chicago’s top prosecutors, Assistant U.S. Attorney Cade Morgan will do anything to nail a corrupt state senator, which means he needs Brooke Parker’s help. As general counsel for a restaurant company, she can get a bug to the senator’s table at one of her five-star restaurants so the FBI can eavesdrop on him. All Cade has to do is convince Brooke to cooperate—and he’s not afraid to use a little charm, or the power of his office, to do just that.


A savvy businesswoman, Brooke knows she needs to play ball with the U.S. Attorney’s office—even if it means working with Cade. No doubt there’s a sizzling attraction beneath all their sarcastic quips, but Brooke is determined to keep things casual. Cade agrees—until a surprising turn of events throws his life into turmoil, and he realizes that he wants more than just a good time from the one woman with whom he could fall terrifyingly, irresistibly in love . . 

Synopsis from Goodreads

Monday, March 25, 2013

And the winner is....

Congratulations to Alisia for winning a hardback copy of An Echo in the Bone by Diana Gabaldon!

Thank you to everyone who entered!

An Echo in the Bone (Outlander, #7)

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Happy Spring!

Happy First day of Spring! Have you signed up to win a copy of Diana Gabaldon's An Echo in the Bone yet??

Since I've been gone so long and it's coming up on my one year blog anniversary, I want to have some fun and do a giveaway.

Around Christmas time, I was out shopping with my brother and as I always do, I stopped at the discount book table in a store. I was shocked to see hardcover copies of Diana Gabaldon's An Echo in the Bone  on the table and only selling for $2.99! Although I have multiple copies of this book, I couldn't just let it sit there so I snatched it up, planning to give it away. Now here's my chance.

Outlander fans everywhere are anticipating the release of Written in My Own Heart's Blood sometime later this year and many of us will be re-reading the series before the release date so I'm giving away a hardback copy of An Echo in the Bone ( Book 7 in the series). If you are already a fan and just want a new copy, don't have a copy, or you haven't read the series and would like to, sign up below!

An Echo in the Bone (Outlander, #7)

Contest ends on March 24
Winner will be picked by
Winner will have 48 hours to respond to email before a new winner is picked.
See Giveaway Tab for my contest rules.

To participate, please fill out the form below. *Note* You must follow this blog to qualify*

If you have any questions, you can email me @

Thank you for entering and good luck!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Romance goodies

Here are two nice treats on the day before Spring starts:

Julie James' novel, Something About You is currently priced at $1.99 for the e-book version only. Even if you already have a paperback, for $1.99 it's a steal to load onto your Kindle or Nook. This is my favorite JJ book so I already snatched my e-book copy.
Here's the link from Julie's Facebook page.
Click here for Nook

Fate has thrown two sworn enemies...

Of all the hotel rooms rented by all the adulterous politicians in Chicago, female Assistant U.S. Attorney Cameron Lynde had to choose the one next to 1308, where some hot-and-heavy lovemaking ends with a death. And of all the FBI agents in Illinois, it had to be Special Agent Jack Pallas who gets assigned to this high-profile homicide. The same Jack Pallas who still blames Cameron for a botched crackdown three years ago—and for nearly ruining his career.

Into each other's arms...

Work with Cameron Lynde? Are they kidding? Maybe, Jack thinks, this is some kind of welcome-back prank after his stint away from Chicago. But it's no joke; the pair is going to have to put their rocky past behind them and focus on the case at hand. That is, if they can cut back on the razor-sharp jibes—and smother the flame of their sizzling-hot sexual tension.

Synopsis from Goodreads.

Jill Shalvis continues the fabulous Lucky Harbor series this Spring/Summer. The first book in the new trilogy is titled It Had to Be You. Right now when you pre-order an e-book version of the book, you will get a bonus copy of Blue Flame(part of an old firefighter trilogy). Available from Amazon and Barnes and Noble (not sure of other retailers).

It Had to Be YouAli Winters is not having a good day. Her boyfriend left her, everyone in town thinks she's a thief, and now she's about to be kicked out of her home. Her only shot at keeping a roof over her head and clearing her name is to beg for help from a police detective who's as sexy as he is stern....
After a high-profile case goes wrong, Luke Hanover returns to his hometown for some peace and quiet. Instead he finds a bombshell brunette in a heap of trouble. As he helps Ali put her world back together, the pieces of Luke's own life finally seem to fall into place. Is this the start of a sizzling fling? Or are Luke and Ali on the brink of something big in a little town called Lucky Harbor?
Synopsis from Goodreads.
Click here for Nook
Click here for Amazon
So two pretty sweet deals for romance lovers out there by two of my favorite romance authors. 
Happy Reading everyone!

Monday, March 18, 2013

Quote of the Day

It's so hard to pick just one, so here are two quotes from the Outlander series on this dreary Monday:

He took both my hands in his, then, and kissed them---the left, which still bore the gold ring of my marriage to Frank, and then the right, with his own silver ring.
      "Da mi basia mille," he whispered, smiling. Give me a thousand kisses. It was the inscription inside my ring, a brief quotation from a love song by Catullus. I bent and gave him one back. "Dien mille altera," I said. Then a thousand more.
Drums of Autumn,Chapter 9: Two Thirds of a Ghost

"I love you, a nighean donn. I have loved ye from the moment I saw ye, I will love ye 'til time itself is done, and so long as you are by my side, I am well pleased wi' the world."
The Fiery Cross Chapter 99: Brother