My One Word for 2022 #OneWord2022


One Word pinecone

Over the holidays, I got a visit from…聽

The Posts of New Year’s Past: 馃懟 馃コ 馃帄 馃帀

One Word for 2021 was: Allow. This one was awesome. It worked SO well. I allowed ALL OF THE THINGS. I didn’t struggle, fight, flail, or falter. (My sarcasm didn’t translate well here. So, the only thing I allowed was badly-written sarcasm.)聽

One Word for 2020 was:聽Focus. Focus on one thing at a time to avoid overwhelm? Fab plan, lady. Alas…

One Word for 2019 was: Move. Getting unstuck was sort of the idea. I鈥檓 still stuck but heartily sorry for it and flailing for a helping hand out of the pit.

One Word for 2018 was: Self. It was a good choice. It worked. A little. Some of the time. Not as often as I’d hoped.

One Word for 2017 was Accept. I did not accept anything. I sort of UN-accepted pretty much everything. I faltered. Failed. Moved on.

Like Scrooge, I have learned from these visits and mean to change my ways. I struggled with a word for this year but, once it popped into my head, I knew it was the one. I thought about it a few more days but, still, it stayed with me. It felt right.聽

There are going to be a lot of changes and uncomfortable things happening this year. And here’s what I’m doing: I’m leaning into the discomfort in a big way. Embracing it.聽

My focus word for 2022:

EMBRACE

It’s a bit like the “accept” and “allow” but giving myself more of an active role.聽

Instead of just breathing (breathing is good, don’t get me wrong) and going with the flow (flowing is also good), I’m creating a situation where I must act in order to allow and accept.

As always, a definition (*nerd alert*):

embrace

[蓹m藞br膩s]

verb聽
  • hold…closely in one’s arms, especially as a sign of affection
hug聽路聽take in one’s arms 路 hold 路 enfold 路 encircle 路 enclose
Challenges? Hardships? Change? I’ve got a hug for you here!
  • accept or support willingly and enthusiastically
welcome聽路聽accept聽路聽receive enthusiastically/wholeheartedly 路聽take to one’s heart聽路聽welcome/receive with open arms 路聽support聽
Upset? Uncertainty? Welcome! Have a cup of cocoa.
noun
  • an act of accepting or supporting something willingly or enthusiastically.
welcome聽路聽welcoming聽路聽favorable reception 路聽embracing聽路聽approval聽路聽adoption聽路聽integration
Hey there, change. What’s up, uncertainty? Welcome to my humble life. Let’s have a glass of wine. 馃嵎

When these things I cannot control come along, I won’t fight them. It’s exhausting and doesn’t make them go away. I’m not doing a great job passively accepting or allowing them. So, I will take them in my metaphorical arms and embrace them.

It’s tough to welcome uncomfortable feelings and difficult situations but I’m hoping a more active role will help me with the whole accepting and allowing thing. I am choosing to DO something. You hear it a lot: “Embrace uncertainty.” “Embrace chaos.” “Embrace change.” And it sounds good in theory…let’s see if I can put that into practice.聽

Here’s my quote of 2022: “If you can’t control it, invite it in for a cuppa.”聽

Happy New Year, my friends. 馃挅 Here’s to your goals, aspirations, resolutions, or whatever floats your boat. Cheers! 馃

Have you ever taken part in the One Word Challenge?

If you haven’t, why not try it? Or think on it a moment and leave one in the comments. What could your focus be this year? I鈥檇 love to hear what your One Word is for 2022.

Stress #WritersLife #IWSG

Stress? What would a writer know about that? Pfft.

I have so many posts about stress, this could simply be a string of links to those. I won’t do that to you.

Among other things, I’ve written about the pressure of “success”, too-many ideas syndrome, and trying to fit writing into my schedule while juggling the numerous responsibilities of life. Dealing with the technical side of stuff (formatting, universal links, formatting, working in Canva, formatting). Trying to keep up with blogging and social media. And putting myself out there with marketing, promotion, etc.

Trying to choose which of those stresses me the most is like trying to choose which wine I like best. It depends.

I’d probably bundle some themed stress-baskets, as a lot of these go together quite nicely.

Writer’s Stress Basket One: Time (lack of, trying to find some), Success (what that even means to each individual writer vs what the world expects it to mean), Blogging (see “Time”), Social Media (see “Time” and, also, just ugh…), Life (see “Time” and, also sapping of energy/creativity). Add a bow and we’re done.

Writer’s Stress Basket Two: Formatting, Uploading, Downloading, Graphics, Promos/Ads, Word, Anything at all to do with computers, Anything at all to do with platforms, Anything at all to do with file types. This one needs some ribbons hanging off the handle.

Writer’s Stress Basket Three: Marketing and Promotion. Add some metallic tinsel crinkle paper and we’re ready to go.

At any given time, my writer’s life delivers me one of these lovely little baskets so that’s where I’m at on that.

What delights me about writing? Well, I feel I should give an equal amount of time to discussing that. It would only be fair. But I’m not going to. Writing, itself, delights me. It really does. I love it. It’s a lifelong pal. Also, putting something of quality out into the world that I created, that I worked hard on, that I am proud of…well, that’s delightful.

HAPPY DECEMBER!
馃巹馃晭馃巺馃徎鉂勨泟

The writer’s life is challenging. It’s full of stressors. Which ones are your biggest bugbears? What brings you delight in your writing life?

IWSG Question of the Month

December Prompt 鈥 In your writing, what stresses you the most? What delights you?

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IWSG (Insecure Writer鈥檚 Support Group)

This post is part of IWSG , a monthly blog hop/prompt started by Alex J Cavanaugh. 

Holiday Gifts from the Heart #GivingTuesday

holiday-charity-gifts

Here it is. My annual gift-giving post. 鉂ゐ煄 There’s something for everyone on your list.

I usually post mid to late December for last-minute ideas but I’m posting early for Giving Tuesday (which takes place on November 30th this year). (If you shop on Giving Tuesday, most organizations will match, double, or even triple your gift.) Enjoy!

Quick, easy, heartfelt. 鉂ゐ煄 Perfect for Giving Tuesday (and last-minute gifts):

Environment / Nature

ARBOR DAY FOUNDATION

arbor-day-post

Mission: “to help others understand and use trees as a solution to many of the global issues we face today, including air quality, water quality, a changing climate, deforestation, poverty, and hunger.”

These Trees in Celebration certificates are lovely and every single dollar you spend plants a tree. (For Giving Tuesday, every dollar you spend plants two trees.) They have other fun gifts here like delicious, rich, rain forest coffee. Every sip helps the world. Because. Trees. Behold the beautiful trees! 馃尣

Animals / Wildlife聽

ASPCA

aspca-post

Mission: 鈥渁nimals are entitled to kind and respectful treatment at the hands of humans and must be protected鈥︹

Show your love for our four-legged friends. Give a holiday gift card in honor of a beloved furchild. I can’t stand the cuteness of that puppy. You know you want to help these little munchkins. Available in snail mail cards or ecards.

Hunger / Poverty

HEIFER INTERNATIONAL

heifer-post

Mission: 鈥渢o end hunger and poverty in a sustainable way by supporting and investing alongside local farmers and their communities.”

Choose a donation and mail, print it out, or email with a custom message to the gift recipient. Or you can give a gift card (to print out or send via email) so they can choose their own donation.

My personal favorite gift to give is honeybees. They are awesome. Here are 2 reasons why:

鈥淔ood for Life: Honey is the only food that includes all the essential elements necessary to sustain life, including enzymes, vitamins, minerals and even water. Its unique chemical makeup also allows it to be preserved indefinitely.鈥

鈥淔armers鈥 Helpers: In the process of searching for nectar, bees pollinate plants. The placement of a single colony can potentially double local fruit and vegetable yields.鈥

Isn’t that incredible? It’s the bee’s knees. 馃悵

KIVA

kiva-post

Mission: 鈥渢o connect people through lending to alleviate poverty. We celebrate and support people looking to create a better future for themselves, their families and their communities.鈥

Mail, print these out, or email them to the gift recipient and they can start loaning right away. Change someone’s life, get paid back, help someone else… And on it goes. Making spirits bright.

Childhood Cancer/Childhood Diseases

ST. JUDE CHILDREN’S RESEARCH HOSPITAL

st-judes-post

Mission: 鈥淔inding cures. Saving children. St. Jude is leading the way the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases.鈥

Please do check out the site if you don’t already know about St. Jude Children’s Hospital. And, if you do, well… ‘Nuff said.

Mail a card or send an email

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

About Giving Tuesday

Use the hashtags #GivingTuesday and #GivingTuesday2021 on social media to spread the word and find tons of ways to help this holiday season!聽

聽鉂勶笍 Have a beautiful holiday season! 鉂勶笍

The Shadows We Breathe ~ Vol. 2 #NewRelease

3D Mockup_Vol2

It’s here! 馃馃枻 馃帀

The Shadows We Breathe (Volume 2) is now available in eBook and paperback!

eBook

Paperback

Thank you to the talented authors who contributed their gorgeous prose to this anthology of short fiction. You are all amazing. 

To Loni Townsend for the beautiful cover art. And to Allie Potts for her help with some icky techy stuff and for creating the 3D image of this book. 馃挄

Blurb

WE ARE ALL PART SHADOW 

Life promises joy and sorrow. Alongside the light, there will always be traces of darkness. It is the nature of being human.

In this anthology of short fiction, we explore health鈥攈ow the state of our bodies and minds nurtures us, damages us, and forms our reality.

Eight artists, whose words paint worlds, bring you stories of pain, confusion, acceptance, and courage. They reveal the conflicting and contrasting nature of health.

Whether mental or physical, our state of being can create chaos or bring us peace.

Within these pages, beautiful words are spun into tales threaded with darkness.

Discover the shadows we breathe. 

Contributors 馃挄

Georgia Bell is the author of Unbound, a young adult paranormal romance about love, fear, and immortality. She was raised on a steady diet of science fiction and fantasy and began writing the stories she wanted to read over a decade ago.

Author Page | Twitter

Ruth Daly鈥檚 poetry, humour, fiction, non-fiction, and contemplative pieces have been published in magazines for children, young adults, and families. She has written 59 children鈥檚 books for educational publishers covering such varied topics as musical instruments, endangered animals, rocks and minerals, and explorers.

Blog | Twitter

Ali Isaac is a writer and blogger living in Co. Cavan, Ireland. In 2020, she was awarded a writing mentorship by Words Ireland and the Arts Council of Ireland, working under the guidance of author, Sara Baume. Her writing has been published in The Stinging Fly, Sonder, and Paper Lanterns.

Author Page | Twitter

R.A. Kerr is a life-long classic film enthusiast and has been blogging about old movies for a decade. She is also a freelance writer and editor, and has facilitated creative writing workshops for kids.

Blog | Twitter

S. Mitchell-Jackson writes prose and poetry. Her work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and the Queen’s Ferry Press Best Small Fictions award. She won the Channillo Short Story Prize in 2020. 

Author Page | Twitter

D. Wallace Peach, best-selling fantasy author, started writing later in life after the kids were grown and a move left her with hours to fill. Years of working in business surrendered to a full-time indulgence in the imaginative world of books, and when she started writing, she was instantly hooked.

Author Page | Twitter

Allie Potts lives in Raleigh, North Carolina with her husband, two children, and spoiled dog. When not finding ways to squeeze in 72 hours into a 24 day, Allie consumes and creates science fiction, fantasy, post-apocalyptic quests, cozy mysteries, and contemporary fiction.

Author Page | Twitter

Available NOW in both eBook and Paperback! 馃枻 馃帀 

The Shadows We Breathe ~ Vol. 2 #CoverReveal

3D Mockup_Vol2

It’s almost here! Isn’t the sage green gorgeous? 馃挌 Thank you to Loni Townsend for that amazing cover art. And to Allie Potts for creating the lovely 3D image.聽

Coming soon to a theatre near you: Volume 2 of The Shadows We Breathe.聽

I, once again, had the privilege of working with seven talented authors. Some seasoned flashers and few new faces this time around.

The second anthology in this series will be out this fall. (Yes, I know it’s fall right now. Which means… Watch. This. Space.)聽

Thank you to the authors who contributed their beautiful words to this collection of poignant stories. 馃枻

Contributors 馃挄

Georgia Bell聽is the author of聽Unbound, a young adult paranormal romance about love, fear, and immortality. She was raised on a steady diet of science fiction and fantasy and began writing the stories she wanted to read over a decade ago.

Author Page聽|聽Twitter

Ruth Daly鈥檚 poetry, humour, fiction, non-fiction, and contemplative pieces have been published in magazines for children, young adults, and families. She has written 59 children鈥檚 books for educational publishers covering such varied topics as musical instruments, endangered animals, rocks and minerals, and explorers.

Blog聽|聽Twitter

Ali Isaac聽is a writer and blogger living in Co. Cavan, Ireland. In 2020, she was awarded a writing mentorship by Words Ireland and the Arts Council of Ireland, working under the guidance of author, Sara Baume. Her writing has been published in The Stinging Fly, Sonder, and Paper Lanterns.

Author Page聽|聽Twitter

R.A. Kerr聽is a life-long classic film enthusiast and has been blogging about old movies for a decade. She is also a freelance writer and editor, and has facilitated creative writing workshops for kids.

Blog聽|聽Twitter

S. Mitchell-Jackson聽writes prose and poetry.聽Her work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and the Queen鈥檚 Ferry Press Best Small Fictions award. She won the Channillo Short Story Prize in 2020.聽

Author Page聽|聽Twitter

D.聽Wallace Peach,聽best-selling fantasy author, started writing later in life after the kids were grown and a move left her with hours to fill. Years of working in business surrendered to a full-time indulgence in the imaginative world of books, and when she started writing, she was instantly hooked.

Author Page聽|聽Twitter

Allie Potts lives in Raleigh, North Carolina with her husband, two children, and spoiled dog. When not finding ways to squeeze in 72 hours into a 24-hour day, Allie consumes and creates science fiction, fantasy, post-apocalyptic quests, cozy mysteries, and contemporary fiction.

Author Page聽|聽Twitter

Available soon in both eBook and Paperback! 馃枻馃帀

Blurbs Drive Me Batty #IWSG

Blurbs, am I right? They’re the scourge of the writing world. A plague. They must be destroyed.

Blurbs are the bane of every author’s existence. (At least mine. And it’s my blog so I say OFF WITH THEIR HEADS!)

Also, I’ll add, intros. Ugh. Though not quite as bad as blurbs, intros are pretty awful. I have a whole post on rejected book intros that’s totally worth reading. It’s sad and kind of hilarious and 100% true.

Here’s a snippet from that post (which could definitely work for blurbs):

During this time of lunacy when I was alienating friends and forcing family to disown me, I came up with some real doozies.

The following introductions are real. They were not written for your amusement. But I thought I would share them with you in case you are amused. It鈥檚 okay, you can totally be embarrassed for me.

  • I like writing. I don鈥檛 like spiders. I made a book. Read it.
  • I think I鈥檇 rather become dinner for the Swamp Thing than continue working on this foreword. Which is ridiculous because the Swamp Thing protects people (and is probably a vegetarian).
  • Short fiction is like dark chocolate. It鈥檚 pure cocoa with no fillers. A small piece is rich and satisfying.
  • I don鈥檛 like writing bios, forewords, or introductions. Actually, I don鈥檛 care for anything that requires me to tell readers about myself or my work.
  • This pumpkin spice stuff is seriously getting out of control. Here鈥檚 a book with NO pumpkin spice in it.
  • I鈥檝e missed meals, skipped family outings, remained unshowered for two five days, typed until my eyes were sand paper and my fingers bled, developed headaches that laughed at Tylenol, and alienated many friends with my writer moods. I do hope you appreciate all that went into this book and that you will take pity on me and read it.
  • I triple dog dare you not to read this book!
  • This is a collection of mini stories鈥 But, wait! There鈥檚 more! No, there isn鈥檛. But mini stories are fun and delicious. Like those little cupcakes with sprinkles that you can eat a bunch of without having to explain yourself to anybody because they expect you to eat more than one.
  • Will this torment never cease?!!!
  • I鈥檓 seriously considering finding a vampire and asking it (鈥渉im鈥? or 鈥渉er鈥?) to turn me so I have an excuse to not finish this intro. No, seriously. Now I鈥檓 wondering. What is the correct pronoun for creatures of the night? Are they 鈥渋t鈥 or do you refer to them by the gender they were before they were bitten? And, technically, they are still that gender. Regardless, if I were a turned into a vampire it would require some adjustment on my part. Would that be an acceptable reason for not including an introduction to this collection?
  • There is nothing (not one thing) in this book that mentions the United States political system, the election, or the candidates.
  • Short fiction is known by many names. Flash, sudden, postcard, micro, hint鈥 Hint fiction. Get it? Hinting at Shadows does hint at darkness but it鈥檚 also hint fiction. Cool, huh? *nudge* *nudge* *wink* *wink* Know what I mean?
  • I鈥檇 rather be watching Harry Potter.
  • If I write any more introductions, there鈥檚 a real possibility I will spontaneously combust.

Titles? Now that’s a different ball of wax. I love titles. Titles for books, blog posts, short stories, flash… Titles are wonderful. Delightful. Magically delicious. (And easy. And fun. Have I mentioned I love them?)

What say you, gentle readers? Can you write blurbs easily? (If so, I don’t like you anymore. Kidding. But do comment because I may hire you.) What about titles? How easy or difficult are those for you?

IWSG Question of the Month

November Prompt聽鈥 Which is more difficult–coming up with a title for your book or writing the blurb?

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IWSG (Insecure Writer鈥檚 Support Group)

This post is part of IWSG , a monthly blog hop/prompt started by Alex J Cavanaugh. 

I’m an Online Bartender (Revisited) #IWSG

This month’s IWSG question is about where we draw the line in our writing. This is a post from 2014. I can’t believe it was 7 years ago but there you go. Here’s my IWSG post (a day late and a dollar short).

When I bartended many moons ago, I stuck to the (possibly antiquated) rule of not talking about politics or religion. I kept the conversation light. Superficial.

It worked for me. After my shift, I left with a purse full of tips and my sanity intact. I didn鈥檛 take my work home with me. (Which, as a bartender, you really shouldn鈥檛. Unless a rep comes in with free samples of a new raspberry-chocolate liquor. Those you bring home.)

Drunken conversations, disagreements, arguments, anger? Why would you want those in your head while you鈥檙e trying to get to sleep at 4 AM?

I鈥檝e seen a few bar brawls in my time caused by 鈥渄iscussions鈥. It鈥檚 really not a good idea to drink and talk about volatile issues. In fact, one can drink a few margaritas, make a cutting comment about another person鈥檚 shoes, and that can lead to a fist fight so what might talking about religion lead to? Go ahead and give that a moment鈥檚 thought.

I have coined a new term: 鈥淥nline Bartender鈥. I鈥檓 not going to mix you a martini. (Get your own drink and meet me back here.) I鈥檓 also not going to discuss politics or religion or current events. Bet you saw that one coming.

If a person (like me, for example) does not write about the latest news, it does not necessarily mean that said person doesn鈥檛 know or care about the issues.

I choose not to write about my opinions on religion and politics (war, abusive sports players, school shootings, terrorism, anti-this or pro-that…) here at Lemon Shark. It doesn鈥檛 mean I don鈥檛 know about these things, it means I don鈥檛 use my blog to talk about them. That鈥檚 just me.

Although鈥

I happen to know that some other bloggers also feel this way so please, while on your blog-reading travels, try to remember that some people are Online Bartenders.

Cheers! 馃嵎馃嵑馃槉

On your blog, are there topics you shy away from (or that are completely off-limits) or do you let it all out? Are you an Online Bartender?

IWSG Question of the Month

October Prompt 鈥 In your writing, where do you draw the line, with either topics or language??

Insecure Writers Support Group Badge

IWSG (Insecure Writer鈥檚 Support Group)

This post is part of IWSG , a monthly blog hop/prompt started by Alex J Cavanaugh. 

Success Is a Four-Letter Word #IWSG

I have a few many tons of posts about success. Fear of success. Lack of success. What is success. Blah, blah. But, the common theme running through these narratives is that I do not believe in a generic, blanket definition of success. I think the word (along with “should” and “balance”) needs to be banned. Alas, it is here to stay. And I will whine about it once more. You’re welcome.

Success is so freakin’ personal. It means something different to everyone.

So when someone says they’re happy to have a never-in-a-million-years-will-this-be-a-best-seller book…maybe, instead of saying, “You can’t think that!” Or “Everyone wants to have a best-selling book!” Or “You’re just saying that because you know it won’t sell.” Maybe just…I don’t know…be nice and believe them.

Some writers want ALL OF THE THINGS. A traditionally published book, a NYT best-selling book, a movie based on their series. Cool. Some want enough to pay the bills and quit their day job. Excellent goal, especially if you hate your day job and your boss is a jackass. Some just want to write. And that’s great, too.

Success is getting into Oxford University, making your first million, being cast as the NEXT BIG THING in some future Marvel movie. It’s also learning to tie your shoe, figuring out your cell phone, losing 5 lbs, catching a baseball. Success is dropping your kid off on his first day of school without crying.

For me, it’s complicated. I have dreams and goals and whatnot but I also have realistic expectations and the knowledge that, whether people believe me or not, I write for me. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Because it’s true.

I suppose, in the simplest terms, I define success (as a writer) by the quality of my books. Success is writing, editing, and publishing something I can be proud of.

How do you define success as a writer?  Is it holding your book in your hand? Having a short story published? Making a certain amount of income from your writing?

IWSG Question of the Month

September Prompt 鈥 How do you define success as a writer?

Insecure Writers Support Group Badge

IWSG (Insecure Writer鈥檚 Support Group)

This post is part of IWSG , a monthly blog hop/prompt started by Alex J Cavanaugh. 

The Shadows We Breathe #NewRelease

3D_Mockup_Vol1_watermark logo

It’s here! 馃馃枻 馃帀

The Shadows We Breathe聽is now available in eBook and paperback!

eBook

Paperback

I am so grateful to have worked with seven talented, amazing authors to create this gorgeous anthology of short fiction.

Thank you to all the authors who contributed. And to Loni Townsend and Allie Potts for their help and patience in explaining techy stuff I don’t understand. 馃槣馃挄

Blurb

WE ARE ALL PART SHADOW聽

Life promises joy and sorrow. Alongside the light, there will always be traces of darkness. It is the nature of being human.

In this anthology, we explore relationships鈥攈ow they sculpt us, hurt us, help us, and reveal our deepest desires.

Eight artists, whose words paint worlds, bring you stories of heartache, loss, hope, and forgiveness.聽They unveil the intimacy and complexity of relationships.

Whether family, friend, or lover, connections to others can hold us up or break us down.

Within these pages, beautiful words are spun into tales threaded with darkness.

Discover the shadows we breathe.聽

Contributors 馃挄

Georgia Bell is the author of Unbound, a young adult paranormal romance about love, fear, and immortality. She was raised on a steady diet of science fiction and fantasy and began writing the stories she wanted to read over a decade ago.

Author Page | Twitter

Maria Carvalho is a multi-genre writer whose short stories have appeared in a wide variety of magazines and anthologies, including Under the Full Moon鈥檚 Light and Cabinet of Curiosities (both by Owl Hollow Press).

Author Page | Twitter

Reena Dobson began pursuing her creative writing with a vengeance when she realised the world was never going to stop and give her time to write. She now writes at the edges, in sunshine and under cover of darkness.

Author Page | Twitter

Ali Isaac is a writer and blogger living in Co. Cavan, Ireland. In 2020, she was awarded a writing mentorship by Words Ireland and the Arts Council of Ireland, working under the guidance of author, Sara Baume. Her writing has been published in The Stinging Fly, Sonder, and Paper Lanterns.

Author Page | Twitter

D. Wallace Peach,聽best-selling fantasy author, started writing later in life after the kids were grown and a move left her with hours to fill. Years of working in business surrendered to a full-time indulgence in the imaginative world of books, and when she started writing, she was instantly hooked.

Author Page | Twitter

Allie Potts lives in Raleigh, North Carolina with her husband, two children, and spoiled dog. When not finding ways to squeeze in 72 hours into a 24-hour day, Allie consumes and creates science fiction, fantasy, post-apocalyptic quests, cozy mysteries, and contemporary fiction.

Author Page | Twitter

Mary Smith, author and poet, is based in Scotland. Her memoir Drunk Chickens and Burnt Macaroni: Real Stories of Afghan Women focusses on her work in Afghanistan, which also provides the setting for her novel No More Mulberries.

Author Page | Twitter

Available NOW in both eBook and Paperback! 馃枻 馃帀聽

The Shadows We Breathe #CoverReveal

3D_Mockup_Vol1_watermark logo

Isn’t that gorgeous?!聽

I am, frankly, freaking out about this.聽

First… There’s the cover. Up there. Go look again. I’ll wait.

Second… This is something I’ve had waiting in the wings for years. I was fortunate enough to have a bit of time and decided to go for it. It’s an anthology of short fiction and I’ve had the privilege of working with seven amazing authors to create this book.

Third… I am over-the-moon thrilled to announce The Shadows We Breathe will be out in August! Stay tuned.

A huge thanks to all the authors who added their words to this collection of beautifully-written stories. 馃枻 To Loni Townsend for the cover art. To Allie Potts for getting this cover print-ready (and creating that lovely 3D image up there).聽

Blurb

WE ARE ALL PART SHADOW聽

Life promises joy and sorrow. Alongside the light, there will always be traces of darkness. It is the nature of being human.

In this anthology, we explore relationships鈥攈ow they sculpt us, hurt us, help us, and reveal our deepest desires.

Eight artists, whose words paint worlds, bring you stories of heartache, loss, hope, and forgiveness.聽They unveil the intimacy and complexity of relationships.

Whether family, friend, or lover, connections to others can hold us up or break us down.

Within these pages, beautiful words are spun into tales threaded with darkness.

Discover the shadows we breathe.聽

Contributors 馃挄

Georgia Bell is the author of Unbound, a young adult paranormal romance about love, fear, and immortality. She was raised on a steady diet of science fiction and fantasy and began writing the stories she wanted to read over a decade ago.

Author Page | Twitter

Maria Carvalho is a multi-genre writer whose short stories have appeared in a wide variety of magazines and anthologies, including Under the Full Moon鈥檚 Light and Cabinet of Curiosities (both by Owl Hollow Press).

Author Page | Twitter

Reena Dobson began pursuing her creative writing with a vengeance when she realised the world was never going to stop and give her time to write. She now writes at the edges, in sunshine and under cover of darkness.

Author Page | Twitter

Ali Isaac is a writer and blogger living in Co. Cavan, Ireland. In 2020, she was awarded a writing mentorship by Words Ireland and the Arts Council of Ireland, working under the guidance of author, Sara Baume. Her writing has been published in The Stinging Fly, Sonder, and Paper Lanterns.

Author Page | Twitter

D. Wallace Peach,聽best-selling fantasy author, started writing later in life after the kids were grown and a move left her with hours to fill. Years of working in business surrendered to a full-time indulgence in the imaginative world of books, and when she started writing, she was instantly hooked

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Allie Potts lives in Raleigh, North Carolina with her husband, two children, and spoiled dog. When not finding ways to squeeze in 72 hours into a 24-hour day, Allie consumes and creates science fiction, fantasy, post-apocalyptic quests, cozy mysteries, and contemporary fiction.

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Mary Smith, author and poet, is based in Scotland. Her memoir Drunk Chickens and Burnt Macaroni: Real Stories of Afghan Women focusses on her work in Afghanistan, which also provides the setting for her novel No More Mulberries.

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Available soon in both eBook and Paperback! 馃枻 馃帀

I have a guest post over at Marcia’s today so check that out!