What you will find here

This is a place to examine plans filled with hope; plans which promise a refuge from chaos; plans which will shape our futures. Veterans with and without PTSD, Pentecostal Presbyterians, Adjudicated Youth, and Artists-Musicians-Writers: I write what I know. ~~~ Evelyn

Monday, December 30, 2013

Sterling has discovered the tree

See him?


He's right there!


Isn't he cute?

Shadow - curious about the camera


Found my camera!



 
First Katydid I've seen in years!!

Excerpt from Troughton Company Chapter One



            The boy slept fitfully beside Chrissy and Jerry.  None of them slept well.  She wasn’t sure how he had come to be with them.  They were all walking north out of Florida and he just sort of took up with them and they with him.  He had quite an arsenal in his backpack – mace, strings he used for snares, a small hatchet, two knives, a fold-up and expandable fishing rod, reel, line and hooks, a compass and a first aide kit.  Strapped to the bag was an array of water bottles, sunscreen and mosquito spray.

To balance the boy’s supplies, the Troughtons had food – dehydrated vegetables and fruit, jerky, teabags, sugar and bouillon cubes.  Jerry carried the kettle and the pot.

            The road they traveled beside, Highway 301, hadn’t been scoured by city-eaters.  That’s what the invaders were called – city-eaters.  They were alien machines made up of one-hundred and forty four mechanical monsters in a twelve by twelve linked grid.  It did exactly what its name implied – it ate entire cities, one forty-eight foot swatch at a time.  The Troughtons had to watch out for individual mechmon (mechanical monsters became mechmonsters became mechmons over the six months since they arrived) but mechmons were easily evaded because the metal aliens made so much noise and traveled in packs of three.  As long as humans didn’t congregate too much metal together, they were pretty much ignored.

The highways were empty.  When the mechmons first landed (actually, they were dropped off along the arctic tree line by the mother ship in thousands of bunches of one gross – like a factory spewing out one-hundred-forty-four four foot by four foot sized cubes at a time), humans stood and gaped in amazement. They went viral on the net, and people looked on them as harbingers of hope and a new alliance with whatever was “out there”.  The mechmons, however, totally ignored their adoring fans and opened their mandibles, unfurled their appendages, and began to eat. Humans watched in disbelief as their world changed. The mechmons joined together into twelve by twelve masses – the city-eaters, and the ones left over joined into groups of three by three – the roadsters, or just stayed single. The mechmons were the scouts and moved in triplets, dashing around the countryside with their three appendages: the concave-shaped one hunting for metal, the spatula-shaped one communicating with each other, and the net-shaped one – the horrible net-shaped grabby-thing absorbing and infiltrating anything it came in contact with -- eating. Roadsters also moved in triplets; as scavengers attacking anything larger than a mechmon could handle in less than an hour – which actually and mind-numbingly  – was a great deal of metal. The roadsters traveled from the mechmons to the city-eaters and back again, like secret agents couriering the where-abouts of precious metals.  Once the mechmons discovered roads, to be specific – cars on roads, the roadsters dashed back and communicated the information to the city-eaters, and humanity watched as the bulks moved at a slow pace to the roads, which led to small towns, which led to highways, which led to major cities.  Humans were resistant to the idea that they were not, in fact, masters of the roads, and continued to use them as pathways of escape, clogging them with trucks, cars, motorcycles, busses and vans.  Each city-eater would plod along the highway, scooping up every vehicle in its path.  Cars disappeared inside it whether there were people in them or not.  People disappeared inside the machines and were spewed out along with rubber and plastic and cloth and glass as great globs of gelatinous machine-generated excrement.  The stench of a fresh pile was horrific for up to four months. Ants and roaches flourished, scouring sustenance from the minutia.

If the people got out of the vehicles and ran off the road, they were generally left alone.  Occasionally, an alien – a four-foot by four-foot cube with black tentacles – would bear down on a flock of survivors, confiscating metal coins, jewelry and glasses and any body parts that might still be attached to them.

Chrissy shuddered and rolled over, refusing to think about the poor soul yesterday.  The old woman had had a metal replacement hip and thigh bone: surgical steel – too rich for a mechmon to ignore.

The boy sat up, looking around first in terror and then in resignation.

“It’s almost dawn, Doug,” Chrissy commented.

“I’ll go check my snares.”

“Would you teach me how to do that?”

Doug shrugged and then smiled, “Sure, Chrissy.”

In Doug’s four snares were a rabbit and a rat; the other two had been yanked away from their anchors. “I guess in time, we might need to think of rats as food, but not yet. Right?”

She nodded.

“You can make a snare out of any type of string or wire. But, I don’t use any type of metal. I started out using shoe strings, but then you had that yarn. And you could use any type of string or rope, too. I read about snares made from grass woven together into a rope.”

“That makes sense, since grass fibers were the first kind of yarn.”

“You make a loop, like a slipknot on one end. Then feed the other end through the loop. Tie the noose a little above the ground and anchor it to a branch or shrub.  Sometimes you need to hold the noose open with two little twigs. The noose has to be small enough for the head but not too big for the shoulders. See, the animal goes through the noose head first and gets caught. It struggles and strangles.”

Chrissy tried not to show how squeamish she felt. Hunger took priority to the thoughts of cute little bunnies. So she nodded again.


Excerpt from

Troughton Company

© Evelyn Rainey

Available for publication.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Tinker Lassie

http://tinkerlassie.ecrater.com

Autographed books, T-shirts, and belly dancing stuff!
I'm adding the first load of my belly dancing outfits (or parts there of) tomorrow, as soon as I can find my camera.

Friday, December 27, 2013

#PerkysBooksandGifts 7


I would like to dedicate this book to everyone who has ever worked, shopped or lived at Books-a-Million #575 in Lakeland, FL.  I would also like this book to be in memory of Patrick Collier, the best BaM Discount Card salesman ever.

A great Holiday gift for that special book lover - you know - sits in the bookstore sipping coffee and reading books. She's mentioned in the book. By name.
Perky's is now available on Amazon as e- and paperback. You can purchase an autographed copy from me. I set up an entire website dedicated to this book. Please take a look, tell me your thoughts, order books and shirts!
Perky's Books & Gifts

Excerpt from Perky's Chapter One



April 6

 

Putting price stickers on books was a pretty mundane experience, but it was part of my job and I got to see the latest sales books fresh out of the shipment boxes. Dressed for the task in thin cotton slacks, a peasant blouse, and moccasins, I was sweating as if I’d just run a marathon. I’m in good shape. Well, tolerably good shape for a woman in her mid-thirties whose main source of exercise is running to catch the bus and shopping. And the task of putting price stickers on the sales books wasn’t that difficult. It was the combination of the store’s thermostat (which the managers never quite seemed to master) and my apron. The neon orange apron all employees wear is made of a wool-like synthetic fabric. I think the fabric is actually recycled tires, or so someone said. They’re hot. They don’t breathe. They smell like old tires. And have I mentioned they are orange? The story is that a customer had complained to head office that she couldn’t find a sales clerk (a.k.a. floor ambassador), hence the switch to the sickeningly visible orange.

I’m not sure why the fabric is made out of whatever material it is, other than the head-office prides itself (or advertises itself) as being recycle-friendly. The work aprons used to be organic black cotton. Now there is nothing organic about the apron, except maybe the green stuff that grows in tufts around the pockets. The only thing black left are the letters emblazoned across the bib spelling out the bookstore’s name: Percival’s Books & Gifts. Around here, though, it’s known lovingly as Perky’s.

The apron I could live with, it was the hat that challenged me. April, for some unknown reason, is Mad Hatters’ Month at Perky’s. The hat, sculpted from the floppiest foam rubber available, perched on my head in the quaint shape of an enormous teacup, complete with saucer, spoon, and teabag tag advertising the store’s most popular blend: Percival’s Zimbabwe Ginseng.

“Excuse me, do you work here?”

I tried to smile in a Perky manner at the mousy blond woman who asked me the question. I gritted my teeth, longing to point out my orange apron (not just a nice tangy orange that is cheerful and compliments yellow - NEON, in your face, here I am—bite me ORANGE) replete with a name-tag spelling out Madison, with my title as Commissioned Officer beneath it. There are times when one must keep silence, or else all is lost. I kept my silence, but I did so only because I had to adjust the slant of the mad hatter teacup hat before it fell to the floor.

“I’m looking for a book.”

I have been told repeatedly not to make comments like you’re looking for a book in a book store? to this kind of statement, so I smiled encouragingly.

“I don’t know the name of the book.”

“We can research it on our computer by the author’s name. Do you remember who wrote it?”

“Yes!”

I took a relieved breath.

“Bob somebody. Or maybe it was Ted. He had an initial between his first and last name.”

My job is to help the customer. My job is to help the customer. My job is to help the customer. “What was the book about?”

“Well, that’s sort of hard to explain.”

“OK. Was it nonfiction?”

“No, it was real! It was about werewolves.”

It is amazing how easy it has become to smile instead of speak. I’m not allowed to contradict the customers. “If you will go up to our customer service kiosk and tell the woman there that you are looking for books on werewolves, she’ll be happy to help you.”

“I did. She told me to ask you. She said she’s new and she doesn’t know how to work the computer.”

At the kiosk, reading a magazine with a face on the cover that was more metal than skin, dressed in what could only be described as gray sackcloth, slumped Henry. When Elizabeth Smythe-Covington came to work here seven months ago, she was given Henry’s nametag. She liked it so much, she refuses to answer to anything else. The original Henry has left for parts unknown. Rumor has it, he sells very new-looking paperbacks at the flea market. He supposedly has a warehouse full of them.

“Werewolves should be found in New Age on aisle seventeen in the center, just past the huge poster of Seth Green.”

“I looked there. The book I want isn’t there.”

“The one by Bob Ted Somebody?”

“Yes! Do you know which one I’m talking about?”

“I think so,” I lied. “I believe we have that on back order. It should come in by next week. If you’re not able to come back at that time, just call and ask for Henry.”

“Henry.” The customer beamed. “Thank you so much, Henry!”

“You’re welcome.” My smile didn’t hurt at all.

“By the way, do they really grow ginseng in Zimbabwe?”

“I can’t imagine Perky’s advertising something that wasn’t true.” OK, so my smile hurt just a little bit.

“Oh, and I don’t mean to sound like a prude,” the woman turned back to me. “But don’t you think your werewolf display is a tad garish?”

“Werewolf display? You mean Seth Green?” I scowled, trying to imagine Seth being anything but adorable.

“No, not the poster. It’s all the fake blood and gore behind it.”

“I’ll tell my manager.” I took a deep breath, put down my pricing gun and meandered toward the New Age section.

“Ms. Madison!” The Colonel had a snap to his voice that could bring an entire battalion to a complete stop mid-step. “I’ve warned you about this before.”

“Colonel,” I smiled, feeling my day had just brightened. I know I shouldn’t play favorites, but the Colonel was by far my favorite Perky customer.

He wore crisply ironed and starched tan cotton slacks and a navy blue oxford shirt, a pack of cigarettes poking out of the pocket. Shiny though worn boots, tanned and wrinkled face, lips set in a no-nonsense mode, the Colonel was probably in his mid-seventies. I was reminded of the saying, Old soldiers never die, they just fade away. But his brown eyes had a way of boring into me sometimes, and I often fought the urge to salute the old man. He held out a book, pointing it at me like a sword. “This does not, and I repeat, NOT belong in Military History.”




Excerpt from
Perky’s Books and Gifts
© Evelyn Rainey 2013
Bedlam Press
ISBN 9781939065377


Thursday, December 26, 2013

WINTER VEGETABLE MELANGE



3 Tbsp butter/margarine

4 cup celery, sliced diagonally

1 large onion, thinly sliced

1 large bell pepper, thinly sliced

4 Tbsp water

1 tsp grated lemon rind

1 tsp celery seed

2 Tbsp lemon juice

Salt & pepper to taste

Melt butter in large skillet or saucepan; add celery, onion, bell pepper and water. Heat to boiling, cover and simmer 10 minutes or just until crispy tender. Stir in remaining ingredients. Toss to mix well. Yield: 4 servings

(Mrs. James E Wood, Port Arthur, TX © Southern Living 1968)

Gluten-free and Vegetarian/Vegan Recipes

To meet my needs of being “gluten-free”, there are no ingredients that have wheat in them. Since one out of one-hundred people now have problems with the way the United States processes their foods, there are plenty of brands which are marked GF Gluten-free. However, read all the way around the label and determine if there might be traces of wheat or if the product was processed in a plant or on machinery that also handles wheat. (These statements are usually NOT found near the list of ingredients.) If this is the case and you are gluten-sensitive or have a wheat-toxicity, don’t use it!

I also deleted recipes which called for hidden gluten – like shrimp, frozen mangoes and parsnips.

Vegetarian foods allow the use of milk, honey, eggs, and other non-kill animal products; vegans do not. I have endeavored to post only recipes with vegan-appropriate ingredients. If I really liked something, though, that was vegetarian rather than vegan, I will note it.

Whenever possible, use non-GMO products (non-genetically modified).  If you think gmo’s are ok for you, you haven’t read any science fiction books, let alone Charles Darwin.

These recipes are not an attempt to substitute wheat or animal ingredients with something else. These recipes are “naturally” or originally gluten-free and vegetarian/vegan.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Online Vision Board

As a friend so recently reminded me - "Envision what you want (ask for it); Envision having it (believe it); Feel the emotional response to receiving it (be Grateful). And then release that to the Universe."

These are the things that I want:
  • to sell the trailer in Foxwood
  • to use that lot rent money towards marketing my books & promoting my writing career
  • to get a card reader linked to Paypal so I can let my customers use credit cards no matter where I set up for signings and conventions
  • to get a smartphone so I can use that card reader
  • to order 2 dozen of each t-shirt design currently being held on ooshirts
  • to find already made Tobogatan Betrothal Bracelets
  • or to make them myself
  • to find the sterling cubes for necklaces from Bedina's War
  • to set up all the domains I already have:
BedinasWar.com, TroughtonCompany.com, MinnaPegeen.com, ComestheWarrior.com, ToBuildtheArmy.com (after I rename it to the correct To Build An Army), ToHoldBacktheDark.com, TheIslandRemains.com
  • to have all those listed above not published yet be found by the right publisher
  • to have Patrick Stewart play the part of the Colonel in the movie version of Perky's Books  Gifts
  • to have Sir Derek Jacobi play the part of Tupelo in the movie version of Bedina's War
  • to have Tim Allen play the part of the Admiral (because even though the part rightfully belongs to William Shatner, I think it would be funnier to have Mr. Allen do it) in Perky's
  • to have Nathan Fillion play the role of Morgan in the whole 7 books series beginning with Comes the Warrior when it becomes a series or movies
  • to be invited and able to attend one convention a month
  • to write one manuscript draft a month
  • to fully edit and polish one manuscript draft a month
  • to develop a proposal packet and pitch one new manuscript a month
  • to find my "Joe"

The little voice inside my head is saying, "Whoa! That's a lot of wants and wishes. Don't be greedy!"
To which I reply, "The Universe is infinite and abundant. This is what I want. The Universe will bring it to fruition."

Monday, December 23, 2013

Toxic Wheat

At what point do I have to divulge my entire medical history to a total stranger just because I want to order a gluten-free meal?

In 2004, I was size 10-12, worked two jobs, and was a care-giver for someone. He died Oct 15 of that year, at the end of three months of three hurricanes which all came across my home town. In the next six months, I plumped up 40 pounds and although I held that weight, I began to grow in size until within a year, I was a size 20. I began fainting and the right side of my face and left side of my body would go numb. I drooled. My speech and thoughts were slow and slurred. My doctor at that time diagnosed me as B12 Anemic and proceeded to give me shots weekly and then pills daily with shots monthly. I improved but I began to gain poundage and my stomach gave me a great deal of pain. I belched all the time - not dainty little burps, gulping great grumbling spasms which went on for hours.

I switched doctors and for the next 5 years, I had MRI's, CTscans, different medications, blood work every six months - nothing the doctor did pinpointed the problems - which grew worse in intensity and diversity.  I did stop drinking, cooking and eating out of plastic vessels. And suddenly, there appeared on the shelves - BPA-Free containers. I can use those.

In late April early May 2012, my doctor thought I'd had a mild stroke, but the $900 CTscan he ordered showed nothing - not even the cyst on the back of my head I've had since birth.

By October 2012, I could eat very little, and still I was a tight size 18W. I began symptoms which made it impossible (or at the very least - unwise) to eat at work. My doctor's Nurse Practitioner was the only one I saw for the next two months, and she prescribed medications for ulcers. By December, I was worse than I had ever been in my life.  My throat felt like I was carrying stones in it, my stomach hurt all the time, I couldn't sleep unless I was curled in fetal position, the belching at night made me sit up and I'd have to sit up for hours at night until they subsided. Probably the worse thing for me personally was I was no longer able to sing. The notes wouldn't come out on the right pitch,  had no breath to sustain even 4 counts, and no volume at all.

By the end of December, I called a new doctor. I sat in his office and told him my symptoms and waited for him to pat my hand and say, "Well, perhaps it is time for a vacation."

He didn't. He listened, jotted  few notes, nodded his head and said, "Sounds like you have a food allergy."

Process of elimination and a very detailed eating chart - wheat came up as the culprit with every negative symptom. I googled wheat allergies and suddenly, this whole sub-culture of Gluten Sensitivities came to light. By the end of January 2013, I'd cleaned out my kitchen of anything with wheat as the ingredient (90% of everything I had) and bought only wheat-free foods. I lost only 5 pounds, but by summer, I was able to squeeze into a size 14 if it was on the loose side. The stones in my throat were exactly that - tumors - which my doctor and the specialist he referred me to treated with a medication.

When I went out for dinner, I soon knew what restaurants were ok and which ones weren't - no matter what foods they prepared. I could tell by the third bite of anything if I could eat it or not -- three bites of anything with wheat and my throat closed and I would have to run to the ladies room and throw up the weird "jelly-fish-like" glob that seemed to contain the toxins. It didn't happen often, but it happened enough that I knew the signs and lived by them.

By October 2013, I began to relax. I looked only at the ingredients of my foods, not on the notes - sometimes on the opposite side of the box or bag - about how the food was processed. After a week of a powdered creamer in my coffee and a bowl of grits for breakfast every day (seasoned with a bullion cube) I wound up in the Emergency Room, unable to stop vomiting: Anaphylaxis.

I went back through my kitchen and was shocked to find how many "gluten-free" or "wheat-free" products were prepared at facilities that processed wheat. Half of my kitchen was given away again. My doctor gave me an epipen to keep with me at all times, and I began to read everything - front and back - on every carton, box, bag and can in the supermarket. I am now in a loose 14 and aiming on getting into a size 10 by the time I show up as one of the guest authors at ALT*Con in April.

Most restaurants will listen to my requests for "no seasoning, no bread, no flour, no bullion" and respond immediately with "Oh! you're allergic to gluten!" However, a few look at me like I'm high-maintenance and hand me whatever.  When my mother goes to eat with me, she goes out of her way to make it very clear that I have a toxicity to wheat and if I don't stop her, will go into glorious details of my recent trip to the ER and how she's learned how to use the epipen on me. She's like a mother bear protecting her cub. I love it, and am mortified by it at the same time. Some of my friends are not so kind - they, too, are embarrassed that I would be so insistent that my simple salad be gluten-free. I've pretty much stopped going out to dinner with some of them.

Yesterday, I went to lunch with my son and his wife and my mom at a restaurant we can all have something fitted to our particular needs. I told the waiter, "Make sure that there is no seasoning of any kind on the chicken, and no bread or wheat anywhere near the salad."

Six bites into the strawberry and chicken salad, (only three of those bites contained chicken), my throat closed and I ran to the bathroom to throw up the jelly-fish until my throat was cleared. Mom ran after me with my purse containing the epipen. Luckily (for me - I thought perhaps Mom was a little disappointed) we didn't have to use the epipen.

This was supposed to have been our Christmas get-together, and it was ruined for me. The waiter insisted he had written down 'no seasoning' and went to get the manager. She insisted there was no seasoning on the chicken and that - when questioned about the location of the kitchen's allergy-prep area - said that it had been cooked separately on a piece of tin-foil. That was unsettling.

Mom and David think I should be more vocal and let the waiter know with no uncertainty that I cannot have wheat. Steff - I love her! - gave me some very strong suggestions on how exactly to do this and some tips on what to look for when I insist on touring the kitchen! I love my family!!!

But at what point do I loose my sense of privacy? I'm a very private person (yeah right, as I type this into a blog read by lots of people). At what point do I stop going to restaurants?

At what point do I stop believing what I've read on the food containers? Last night I had gluten-free NON-GM rice and a plank of wild-raised salmon. Three bites and I'm tossing out jelly-fish again. I know I can't eat farm-raised fish, their feed is mixed with gluten to plump up the animals. (please note, I still weigh about what I weighed this time last year when I was a PLUMP size 20.)

Wheat is toxic to me.

I just read an interview of the man who wrote the Southbeach Diet. Seems he's writing a new book on Gluten-free Southbeach Diet.  He said when he first wrote the book, the people who did the first part - no breads, etc., their weight loss was tremendous but he didn't realize the implications. At that time, only 1 out of 10,000 people were gluten sensitive. Today (well, as of December 2013) 1 out of 100 people in America have some form of gluten sensitivity (not allergy - that's different) from rashes to upset stomachs to distress to vomiting to anaphylaxis and death. Look at the obits; there are dozens of plump 40 and 50 year olds dying every day. Remember when our dogs and cats died from the gluten-enhanced foods coming from China? Raven, my son's wonderful dog, was one of them.

Wheat - the way it is processed now - is toxic.

At what point do we shrug off our privacy and insist that our foods be safe?

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Writing and the Law of Attraction


            I have always wanted to write books. I decided in third grade that I wanted to write books that explained things. I wanted to make up stories that made people laugh and cry and be scared and feel brave. So for the next thirty-five years, I wrote. I wrote well, too, and had poetry, short stories and articles published – well, a few – and told myself that ‘one day, I will be a published author.

            Yep, yep – one day I will be… That gave me an excuse to never do what it took to want it now.

            In 2001, tragedy struck and kept striking for the next three years. I came to the realization that I needed to do what it takes to become an author. And of course, as it should have, this was the time I was introduced to the Law of Attraction. I took all of the emotions I had experienced, all of the people I’d met, loved and lost, all of the hopes and dreams and ideas that I’d envisioned, and wove them into my novels. I joined a writers group and when the facilitator moved to another state, I stepped in and began leading the group. When I received letters from publishers – you know – the form letters which let you know that there was no way on earth they would ever consider publishing even my laundry list – I called them letters of declination: the publishers had declined to publish my book. It wasn’t a rejection of my work or my life or my creativity; it was simply the publisher’s loss. Over the next two years, the letters of declination stopped being cookie-cutter in form and became personal notes from the editors. Every time I walked into a book store or saw a shelf of books, I stood there and envisioned my books sitting on the shelves.

            What I lacked was discipline. A friend of mine suggested I apply for a position as a weekly columnist for Bella. I did; I got accepted as the Veterans Columnist and messed up by arguing with the editors. I learned a valuable lesson when they thanked me for my two weeks of columns and wished me best of luck down the road – I asked for a second chance. They gave it to me and I applied what I had learned to the weekly articles I wrote for veterans and also applied that to every query letter I wrote. I had weekly deadlines and learned to write a thousand word article in less than an hour. I began speeding up my writing, tightening my focus, and went back to writing my novels by hand and using the time spent typing them into a computer as the first editing of the rough draft. I carried a notebook with me everywhere I went and used all those ‘wait times’ as writing times. I stopped watching TV and used that time to write. Six months later, Comfort Publishing bought Minna Pegeen. I set up thirteen book signings the summer it came out. A year later, they bought Bedina’s War and I was invited to be a guest author at the Carolina Renaissance Festival. This September I received two contracts in one week: Bedlam Press bought Perky’s Books and Gifts – a story which was created in the very first bookstore I used to stand and envision my books being, and Whiskey Creek Press bought The Island Remains which I began writing last April after my doctor found a very large tumor: Invaders come and go, but the Island remains.

            My knowledge of the Law of Attraction began with The Secret – a video loaned to me during the years of chaos mentioned above. In May 2013, I copied the top ten list from the New York Times website, pasted it onto my word program, and then typed in my name and the titles of my published books and those I have written in the top ten spots. I printed it out and have it attached to my vision board on my dresser in my bedroom. That summer, I found the book Abraham and the Law of Attraction by Esther and Jerry Hicks in a thrift shop. Then I discovered and watched most of their videos. I began sharing this knowledge with my middle school students. I love teaching, and I teach what I love, too. My 60 students have all created vision boards and we spend one to two minutes each class period envisioning what we want and then releasing it to the universe. So, it should have been no surprise to me (but I was greatly pleased!) when I found a copy of the magazine The Law of Attraction on the shelves of a store (and yes, I was standing there envisioning a dozen of my books with stickers declaring me as a New York Times Best Selling Author on them).

            I asked to become a published author forty-five years ago. I believed that I would become a published author eight years ago. I am so grateful that my writing can touch people – can make them cry and laugh and escape and hope and believe and love. If you want to write a book, write it. If you want to become published, open your heart up and learn what the universe needs you to learn. Hone your skills with those lessons. See your books sitting there on the shelves. People need to read terrific books. Write them.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Forgot to give this a title - Sorry!


So, as you know, Perky's came out last week and I am really happy. Bedlam Press is a terrific publisher to work with. The quality of the paperback is top-notch. The cover is incredible! I'm selling the books and the bookstores are selling the books and the internet is selling the e-books  and all is right with the world.(except my enter key isn't working for some reason...) Bear with me. Today is the first day of my Winter Break, so of course, when the alarm went off for my med, my dog and kitten decided it was time to get up and it was their role in Fate and Fortune to make sure I complied with their decision.  So It's 7:00 in the morning, I've fed them, taken them out into the back yard (Sterling the Kitten loves it out there and has not come back in), fixed a 20 oz cup of coffee complete with demari sugar and goat's milk, and a bowl of gluten-free cheese grits.  Moonbeam has decided she's had enough of baby-sitting Sterling in the backyard and has taken over her usual roll as moderator of my keyboard. So if there are a few extraneous 8 strokes, she's adding her two cents to it.  A note - she helped name the Tobogatans.  (Oh, this enter key! )   Sterling has bounded back inside -   not content without an audience.   (begin new paragraph here) There! The Grammar Queen can relax!   (begin new paragraph here)
I have started a sequel to Perky's - most likely entitled Perky's Books and Jeremy's Jresses. It begins with Billy the Children's Department Coordinator telling Madison, "That's just wrong." No cussing, no 'pardon my French', just his heartfelt response to Doreen and her friends performing in the café in their new group called "Belly Dancers for Jesus."

OH Look!! the enter key is working again!!!

Damn shame, I've said all I wanted to say today.

May you have a day full of joy and great discoveries. If you don't, you must not have wanted to. You realize you choose what you want to receive from the Universe. Be grumpy for all I care! I am going to have a wonderful day. (See, I'm not all heartless marketing - I didn't say a "perky day"!)  But if you've run out of clean clothes, there are shirts available on Evelyn's Emporium.

Friday, December 20, 2013

#PerkysBooksandGifts 6



All in a day's work for any normal bookstore.
So, welcome to Perky's Books and Gifts!


\A great Holiday gift for that special book lover - you know - sits in the bookstore sipping coffee and reading books. She's mentioned in the book.

Perky's is now available on Amazon as e- and paperback. You can purchase an autographed copy from me. I set up an entire website dedicated to this book. Please take a look, tell me your thoughts, order books and shirts!
Perky's Books & Gifts

Friday, December 13, 2013

#PerkysBooksandGifts 5


Oh, and along the way, Madison and Thomas get married, the god and goddess of War shape-shift and fly away together, and Elizabeth is reunited with her true love.


Pre-order it now! A great Holiday gift for that special book lover - you know - sits in the bookstore sipping coffee and reading books.

Friday, December 6, 2013

#PerkysBooksandGifts 4


When librosprites (they are sort of like static electricity with a wicked sense of humor) infest Perky's bookstore, Madison and her Perky friends devise a plan to evoke spritephage demons which will consume the librosprites. Her friends, however, have to overcome their religious differences (spanning from Roman Catholic to Wiccan and every faith in between) to evoke the spritephage demons, solve two murders and prevent a third, and adapt to the take-over of Tobogaton Nationals.


Pre-order it now! A great Holiday gift for that special book lover.

Friday, November 29, 2013

#PerkysBooksandGifts 3



Greg is an egregore (a man-made demon) which doesn't want to die, so he has to prevent the last heir of his creator from becoming good. (Oh, and by the way, Greg breeds librosprites as a hobby in his spare time.)
Pre-order it now!

Friday, November 22, 2013

#PerkysBooksandGifts 2




The story of Perky's Books and Gifts begins with murder and ends with true love. It is told by Madison, Perky's Night Manager.



Pre-order it now!

Friday, November 15, 2013

#PerkysBooksandGifts 1


Welcome to Perky's Books and Gifts where gardening books blossom into bouquets, cookbooks sizzle with succulent juices, and military history books can be lethal. Don't mind the mutilated body behind the werewolf display, or the fact that the café manager is an egregore; Frankenstein was one, too.
Pre-order it now!

Sunday, October 20, 2013

More Joy of Life









This B&W above is how I felt when I began belly dancing.
Below - this s how I feel now - and plan to look like this time next year.


Why yes, I did have a good time at Necronomicon!


This and many other photos were taken by
 Kent Akselsen Digital Imaging as part of the charity set up at Necronomicon.
He and his staff were absolutely wonderful! 
They treated me like a gypsy princess. 
Kent Akselsen Digital Imaging
3412 Blowing Oak Street
Valrico, FL 33596-62141


Saturday, October 19, 2013

A lifetime later

Hmm. The last time I posted was Feb. 2013. That's shameful in a way. But in reality, that was a whole lifetime ago.

Between Feb and now (Oct. 20, 2013):
I have been reunited with my son again after 10 years of not knowing whether he was alive or dead - and he's married and has a child on the way and he's so much fun to be with

I have battled physical illness (aggressive tumors and a really life-altering food toxicity), I have lost over 40 pounds and dropped from a tight size 18 to a perky size 14

I've written seven manuscripts

I have two manuscripts which are going to be published in 2014

I've learned to belly dance.

I've left the church which filled most of my social time; it was a necessary journey I had to take, much like Jesus telling the disciples they should brush the dust off the bottom of their sandals and walk away

I've discovered that the distributor for my first publisher went bankrupt and I'll probably never get my due royalties

I've discovered there are many hundreds of wonderful publishers out there

I've discovered how to use a smartboard

I have come to the conclusion that my GPS has a wicked sense of humor and/or is evil incarnate and/or has a perverse need to send me in loops which always involve driving on I4.

I've discovered you can't argue with a GPS; you should just turn it off.

I've discovered that when you throw a GPS out the window of your car whilst going 90 miles per hour on I4 (which is where you never wanted to be in the first place), you should really unplug it from your car first.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Raven

by Evelyn Rainey


Raven



My dog Raven

Foundling, changeling

Ancient God.



Like Hercules, his muscles

        Bulge and strain with

        Graceful pleasures.

In defense, his teeth like

        Titans against Ulysses.

His tongue, like water-nymphs,

        Playful and loving.



The Ennui Raven-god loaned him

        His colors and name

        And humor.



Zeus in Anger.

Apollo in Gentleness

Bacchus in Joy

Athena in a Race



Like Volkan’s bellows, he lies

        At my feet and

        Smiles his Cupid’s darts.



Like Janus, he will age

        And die and be replaced

        Again.


Tuesday, February 5, 2013

The Last Amen

by Evelyn Rainey



The Last Amen



I will praise You

            As long as there are stars in the sky.

I will love You

            As long as the ocean roars.

I will serve You

            As long as the forests have trees.

I will praise You

            Until the very last Amen.



You knew me before I was formed in the womb

And you saw me running before I could crawl.

You gave me a voice to sing and so I’ll praise your Name

            Until the very last Amen.



I will praise You

            As long as there are children in the world.

I will love You

            As long as the rains fall.

I will serve You

            As long as the deserts have sand.

I will praise You

            Until the very last Amen.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Erinyes

A compliment is a pleasant gift. But self-sacrifice is the greatest gift one can give. Erinyes


Scriptures from A Filker’s Companion to Bedina’s War

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Old Illuminati

An ounce of joy costs a pound of pain.Old Illuminati


Scriptures from A Filker’s Companion to Bedina’s War

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Raven

by Evelyn Rainey


Raven



My dog Raven

Foundling, changeling

Ancient God.



Like Hercules, his muscles

        Bulge and strain with

        Graceful pleasures.

In defense, his teeth like

        Titans against Ulysses.

His tongue, like water-nymphs,

        Playful and loving.



The Ennui Raven-god loaned him

        His colors and name

        And humor.



Zeus in Anger.

Apollo in Gentleness

Bacchus in Joy

Athena in a Race



Like Volkan’s bellows, he lies

        At my feet and

        Smiles his Cupid’s darts.



Like Janus, he will age

        And die and be replaced

        Again.


Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Poetry

by Evelyn Rainey







Poetry?

I used to know you.

Didn’t we love each other once

When I was young?



You used to call me from my bed

And whisper sweet secrets

To me all night long.

You used to tease me with

Rhymes and rhythms and innuendo.

You used to make me sing

And sob and laugh and I

Languished in your embrace.



But you weren’t enough.

I abandoned you

For a 9 to 5 career

And a 24 – 7 marriage and

The terrible twos and

Savage sevens and the abysmal adolescents

Of offspring.



I never stopped loving you,

But I was too shallow

To hold the full of you.


And now

The career no longer enthralls.

The marriage was parted by death.

The child has become a man

And now

You call me again from bed.



I am groggy and awkward

But you are patient.

I won’t love you as flippantly as before

I had nothing with which

To deepen your words.

No flavor to spice your rhythm.

No passion to flaunt your rhymes.



The life I lived without you

Will now ripen the fruit of my love.


Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Xiang


Man born of woman has a limited number of days.Xiang



Scriptures from A Filker’s Companion to Bedina’s War