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NaNoWriMo: Day one

So, I’m using NaNo this year to finish book four of my Philadelphia Coven Chronicles series, Waking for Winter. AAAAND to hopefully start a new project. Ambitious, yes?

Well, I’m not going to lie, I need the motivation. Not that I haven’t been a writing machine this year–I’ve kicked out most of the Philadelphia Coven Chronicles in 2016. However, this book has been stalling for me. The characters are great, I’ve got a cool as shit concept, but I’m just waiting for certain scenes to gel, for it to tug at my heartstrings and not let go.

Come on, Kat, what are you doing blogging and not writing? I KNOW. I’m being bad. I haven’t even gotten my normal 1000 words in for the day let alone the extra 600some I need to keep on target. I know myself though–challenges thrill me. They give me something to fight for, and once I start fighting for this story, nothing will stop me. So I go into NaNo with a cup of coffee, an open heart, and some ass-kicking scenes to write.

To all you other NaNo’ers out there–WRITE ON!

Posted in Articles

Project Purse Dump: November 13, 2015

Hello. My name is Linda Joyce, and I’m a purse junkie. I have purses in different shapes and sizes. Purses made of different materials. If there’s a support group for purse junkies like me, one that provides inside tips about the best sales, then sign me up. But don’t think for a minute that I have any intention of kicking this habit.

Nov 13 - Purse Photo - Linda Joyce

I do want to clarify. While I am a purse junkie, I’m not a purse snob. I offer you a view of my Jam Bag as supporting evidence. It’s colorful. Has style. Notice the silver grommets and the black handles. And shows off my signature sign—Fleur de Lis. It’s ecofriendly, made from recycled bottles.

So what do I jam in my jam bag?

1) Japanese key chain with my key fob, reward cards, and red change purse carrying three, dollar coins inside.

2) Hairbrush – this is insurance. I carry it so I’ll never need it.

3) Turquoise wallet housing credit cards, stamps, miniature diploma from the University of Florida, and a few single dollar bills. It’s also big enough to hold my phone inside when I need to Grab-n-Go.

4) Leather case hiding an imported German fountain pen.

5) Pen—one of the first I got for SWAG

6) Lipstick – PÜR Moonlit Pearl

7) Business cards- name, address, rank, and no serial number.

8) Hand wipes from the casino in Biloxi. I came home $60 in the good and put it in the bank.

9) Kleenex

10) Mints – SWAG I carry around. Never know when I might meet a new reader.

11) Notebook—covert operations recorded to be used as secondary characters in a story.

12) Bookmarks for Her Heart’s Desire. On the flip side, the books in the Fleur de Lis series.

Hope you’ll connect with me.

Nov 13 - Headshot - Linda Joyce

Website: http://www.linda-joyce.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LindaJoyceAuthor

Twitter: @LJWriter https://twitter.com/LJWriter

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6950241.Linda_Joyce

Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/Linda-Joyce/e/B00BODDROS/

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/LindaJoyceWorld/boards/

Google+:   https://plus.google.com/+LindaJoyce/posts

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Project Purse Dump: November 6, 2015

The Artist Cherry Tucker via Larissa Reinhart

Nov 06 - IMG_1810 - Larissa ReinhartFirst off, I don’t carry a purse. I’ve got too much to haul around and generally if I’m not at an art gig, I carry beer money in my pocket, which is all I really need. I know I live in Georgia and most girls add a touch of lipstick before heading to the Piggly Wiggly or the Tru-Buy, but I’m not most girls. I might have a few smudges of oil or acrylics on my person anyway, so why dress that up with lipstick?

My name is Cherry Tucker and I live in Halo, Georgia. I like to think of myself as ten times tougher than I look. My height, blonde hair, and cornflower blue eyes don’t help me none. I’m a portrait artist, so where I’m not paying attention to how I look (except for my clothes, I do love to create my own outfits), I am paying attention to how you look. For example, what color would I mix to capture your eyes or what the contrast of light is doing to the angles of your cheekbones. And if you’re a guy, I’ll check out your muscle definition, if you have any. Purely for professional reasons, of course.

Nov 06 - IMG_1811 - Larissa ReinhartThat’s why you can see I always carry a sketch book and pencils. And brushes. Sometimes paint, but generally I keep that in my tackle box. Measuring tape’s always handy. Duct tape, too. I’ve been hog tied and duct taped (don’t ask), so I like to carry my own. And they’ve got some colorful ones, now.

Band Aids and Motrin. More necessities of my lifestyle. Particularly if you do get hog tied and duct taped.

And if I do need to clean up, I’m ready with the lipstick and some jewelry. I’ve got a bullet ring and pistol earrings that are good for any occasion. Nail polish comes in handy for all sorts of things. For example, if you drive a rusty, old truck, when you see a new spot, just dab it with some polish. Works wonders for holding the truck together and you can fix your nails real quick, too.

Thanks for your interest! This was a great chance to clean out my bag. I found a lot of empty shot gun shells. Don’t know why I’ve been carrying them around, but now I’m thinking they could make Christmas ornaments.

Nov 06 - closeup  - Larissa Reinhart

A 2015 Georgia Author of the Year Best Mystery finalist, Larissa writes the Cherry Tucker Mystery series. The first in the series, PORTRAIT OF A DEAD GUY (2012), is a 2012 Daphne du Maurier finalist, 2012 The Emily finalist, and 2011 Dixie Kane Memorial winner. The fifth mystery, THE BODY IN THE LANDSCAPE, releases December 2015. Her family and Cairn Terrier, Biscuit, now live in Nagoya, Japan, but still call Georgia home.

The fifth book in the Cherry Tucker Mystery series, The Body in the Landscape, is available for preorder now. You can find Cherry Tucker here: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, iBooks, and anywhere else, if you just ask.

Ye Ol’ Links:

http://larissareinhart.com/

http://www.facebook.com/RisWrites

http://www.twitter.com/RisWrites

http://instagram.com/larissareinhart

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5806614.Larissa_Reinhart

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Project Purse Dump: October 30, 2015

Hey y’all. It’s my turn to share what I lug around in my giant purse. I don’t always carry such a monstrosity but after I had kids the size of my purse grew exponentially and has stayed that way :-).

Oct 30 - IMG_3755 - Kristi RoseFirst, I have to share that I scored such a good deal on this purse, like 80% off, and my daughter found the matching wallet which cost me $10. So wow- that never happens to me. I’ve never even had a purse and wallet that match so I feel like a girl who is definitely wearing her big girl panties.

Ok, let’s get to it. Starting at the top and going clockwise this is what you’re looking at.

  1. Giant pink folder is my passion planner. I know. I know. We have smart phones but it’s just not the same as writing down everything in the moment. My passion planner tells me what to do and when to do it. For all things work, child and writing.

Sometimes, I swap this out for my laptop. I never carry both or my purse would weight 10 pounds.

  1. Slim black case is my stun gun. Yep, I carry a stun gun. Sometimes two. And I’m not afraid to use it. Veronica Mars is my idol.
  1. Brown case with rubber band is a wallet of sorts. I’m a couponer and this keeps me organized for that. I once bought a year’s worth of toiletries including razors for $34.28. No lie.
  1. Matching wallet! Holla!
  1. Gum- never leave home without out it. Yes, I chew it obnoxiously. Sorry.
  1. Pens and pencils.
  1. Chick-fil-a card to get a discount. Cuz I eats there a lot 🙂 (she says with an accent)
  1. My author postcards and business cards but the truth is I’m always nervous about handing them out.
  1. Packet of tea and honey sticks. I probably drink 4-5 cups of tea a day. Hot and cold.

CENTER MASS

  1. Ear buds
  1. Lipstick. I usually carry more but my purse tipped in my car so the rest are rolling around on the passenger seat floorboard. I only grabbed up my favorites.
  1. Motrin, hand sanitizer, and lotion that smells like yummy cake.

That’s it. That’s me in a nut shell. Oh, Yes, I carry feminine products. I see here that I have forgot to reload on those. Whoops.

Thanks Tracey and Jessica for letting me be a part of this. I love having this insiders look at everyone’s purse:-).

About the author:

Kristi Rose was raised in central Florida on boiled peanuts and iced tea. She’s been lucky enough to travel the world but now, a wife and mother, she’s resigned to traveling to the grocery store. No matter where she is, she enjoys watching people and wondering about their story. That’s what Kristi likes to write. Stories about everyday people, the love that brings them together, and their journey getting there. Kristi is a member of RWA. Romance Writer’s Weekly and The KickAss Chicks

Social Media:

Website/Blog: http://kristirose.net

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Kristi-Rose/364071883695814?ref=hl

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Krosewrites

Goodreads Author: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8256034.Kristi_Rose

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/krosewheeler/

Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/103783595428165613010/posts

KickAss Chicks: http://kickasschicks.com

Romance Writers Weekly: https://romancewritersweekly.wordpress.com

Posted in Articles

Project Purse Dump: October 23, 2015

When offered the chance to get purse-onal, I jumped on it. (Grin and bear it, I love my puns!) I have to admit though, it wasn’t until I spilled the contents out on the floor for the picture that I realized what a wonderful metaphor it was for myself. For any purse carrier, what you choose to put in that small space is a reflection of you, in some shape or form. After all, anyone with a heavy purse knows the burden of the beast weighing down your shoulders.

Without further ado, here’s mine and the contents:

Oct 23 - Purse - Kat McIntyreFirst, note the ratty canvas bag that I’ve had for a couple years now. It’s frayed and covered in a splatter of fake zombie blood that just won’t come out. In case you hadn’t gathered, I’m quite a tomboy, and perfectly content toting around a functional bag I got for fifteen bucks at Big Lots. Although, I may need a new one soon as the bottom’s getting pretty worn.

Obviously, my wallet and keys are the essentials. To be noted, that Gamecube lanyard was given to me by one of my first boyfriends, well over ten years ago. Yep, since the time of Nintendo Gamecube. Hey, if it’s not broke, I don’t need to fix it. When I was a teenager, I used to wear boy pants and would always lose my keys from the pockets, hence the lanyard received. Same with my wallet—it was a hand-me-down from someone. I’m the queen of Goodwill and hand-me-downs.

Next in the queue of importance: my notebook, my planner, and my Kindle. Let’s be honest folks, a Kindle is a book nerd’s best friend, and the second I’m waiting somewhere or have a break at work, you can bet I’m tearing through another book. And the notebook is an author’s best friend. Likewise, if I’ve got time and a scene sneaks up on me, I’ll start jotting things down. As for the planner, I’m a Leslie Knope planning queen, even though I’ve got the memory of a goldfish—so the planner’s essential.

Now to tackle my weird nitty gritties. On the right hand side, I have a thumb drive loaded with pictures of our recent trip to Canada—my husband and I brought it with when we went to visit my folks. As for the little white square next to it, that’s my Square Reader that I take to events with me. Though, I have a couple floating around.

Next to those? The business cards are for my massage business—a massage therapist has to always be prepared. Underneath the cards is a sample of ginger from a different vendor than I normally use for tea. I’ve been meaning to take it out of my purse for awhile now, but it got sucked into the vortex. And of course, a pad—I mean, what lady doesn’t have some sort of pad or tampon in her purse? As for the pens, self explanatory due to the notebook. On top of that is my little name tag for work—if you squint and see the LMT, it stands for Licensed Massage Therapist.

But the oddities aren’t over! I’ve got a rock in the bottom of my purse, and for the life of me, I can’t figure out where it’s from. When I was a kid I had a huge rock collection and when I see cool ones or ones from important places, I like to pick them up…however, that’s useless if I can’t remember where it was from. (See, goldfish memory.) And bobby pins, which I just discovered how to use a year or two ago. Quit those appalled looks, I’m terrible at traditional ‘girl’ things. A hair tie is important, because when I give up on my half-assed effort at styling, I usually just throw it back into a ponytail. And the coin floating around is one from Canada, now useless to me here!

Finally, we’ve spotted something girly in my bag—makeup! But as with everything, for me it’s the bare essentials. I’ve got two chapsticks, an awesome lipstain that for as inexpensive it was works so wonderfully, and a dark brown eyeshadow crayon that I use to give my eyelids some contour. When I put on makeup for work it’s….either the lipstain or the eyeshadow. I don’t usually do both, because as we’ve stated before, I suck at dolling myself up on a day to day basis. Doesn’t mean I can’t commit for weddings or parties and whatnot, but on an average day, I’d rather spend the extra time reading or writing.

As for the contents of my purse, that’s all folks! But the fun doesn’t stop here—a bunch of fantastic blogs are participating every Friday, so keep tabs on #PurseDumpProject, and tag your own photos!

Oct 23 - Headshot - Kat McIntyre

Author Bio-

A modern day Renaissance-woman, Katherine McIntyre has learned soapmaking, beer brewing, tea blending, and most recently roasting coffee. Most of which make sure she’s hydrated and bathed while she spends the rest of her time writing. With a desire to travel and more imagination than she knows what to do with, all the stories jumping around in her head led to the logical route of jotting them down on paper. Not only can her poetry and prose be found in different magazines, but she’s had an array of novels and novellas published through Decadent Publishing, Boroughs Publishing, Hazardous Press, and Jupiter Gardens Press. For more casual content, she’s a regular contributor on CaffeineCrew.com, a geek news website.

Author Links-

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/kmcintyreauthor

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/pixierants

Website: http://www.katherine-mcintyre.com

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Katherine-McIntyre/e/B00J8U4VNU

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6473654.Katherine_McIntyre

Tumblr: http://www.booksteacoffee.tumblr.com

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/kmcintyremt

Posted in Articles

Project Purse Dump: October 16, 2015

#PurseDumpProject – Tara Quan – Guess what my #cat discovered in my purse last Friday!

Oct 16 - Purse 1 - Tara Quan 

Since my kitty decided to photo bomb my Purse Dump picture, I figured I’d attempt to describe the contents from his point of view.

Oct 16 - Purse 2 - Tara Quan

Now for the boring version.

Chew Toys:

  1. My lunch money pouch, which I bought during a trip to San Francisco many moons ago. It’s made from recycled plastic, and it might just be the hardiest coin purse I’ve ever owned.
  2. My credit card holder. The wallet itself I bought from Thailand. It contains my ATM card, learner’s permit (I have yet to learn how to drive), and one lone business card (just incase I bump into Nalini Singh on a roman sidewalk one day).
  3. My Italian ID card—it’s a laminated piece of paper, and it’s a smidge too big to fit into my wallet. I usually have it loose in my purse.

Treasure Boxes:

  1. Eye glass box. (Warby Parker is awesome for cheap online specs).
  2. Mini-clutch. It usually holds everything under “Chew Toys,” along with my phone. As you can tell, my purse is humongous, so I occasionally have to streamline in a hurry. It’s really easy to do when the essentials are already in a single container.
  3. Empty lunch box. I always pack a salad and eat it at my desk, perpetuating the stereotype of the “crazy Americana.” Italians take their lunch and coffee breaks very seriously.
  4. Mint Box. It once actually held “relatively strong mints,” but it is now a container for Eclipse gum and Altoids.

Teeth Sharpeners:

  1. My specs. If I ever leave them lying about, my cat arrives to chew on them without fail.
  2. Lip balm. One for the Mini-clutch, and one for my actual purse. I have a weakness for Clinique chubby sticks.
  3. Wacom Bamboo tablet. My day job involves managing a website and making graphics for it, so I shlep my graphics tablet to and from work. I also find it a lot more comfortable than a mouse. At home, my cat chases the pen around as I use it and attempts to wrestle it out of my clutches.

Dangly Toys:

  1. One for the outer gate, one for the building, one for my apartment.
  2. What girl can leave the house without her phone? I listen to podcasts on my walk to work, so the earphones are a must. (By the way, can you guess what my favorite color is?)
  3. [Not on my cat’s list] Mosquito repellant—I have O+ blood. It makes me a magnet for mosquitoes. Yes, there are mosquitoes in Italy. I didn’t realize how many until I got here.

There you have it, the contents of my purse last Friday. If you’re a fan of comics starring cats, check out the book trailers I made for my A Witch’s Night Out series: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQ68qla6xrPE8a69mh9iV3g/videos

(You may recognize the cartoon kitty. I have a tendency to recycle graphics.)

Layla Tarar Photo by Melissa Golden
Layla Tarar
Photo by Melissa Golden

About the Tara Quan

Globetrotter, lover of languages, and romance author, Tara Quan has an addiction for crafting tales with a pinch of spice and a smidgen of kink. Inspired by her travels, Tara enjoys tossing her kick-ass heroines and alpha males into exotic contemporary locales, paranormal worlds, and post-apocalyptic futures. Her characters, armed with magical powers or conventional weapons, are guaranteed a suspenseful and sensual ride, as well as their own happily ever after. Learn more at www.taraquan.com

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Google+ | Goodreads | Pinterest | Amazon

 

 

Posted in Articles

Project Purse Dump: October 9, 2015

When I heard about #ProjectPurseDump, a part of me rejoiced and laughed out loud. After all, what an original idea for a blog hop!

The other part of me shivered in horror. After all, this means I’m offering viewers a look inside my purse. Some days, even I don’t know what’s in there. And I swear, sometimes, in its deep recesses, things move…

I can only attribute it to the fact I have what my sons call a “mother’s purse.” In other words, a bottomless pit of useless items that you very well might need in a life-or-death situation one day. I can’t find my wallet most of the time, but if you randomly pick three items from my purse, you’d be able to MacGyver your way out of many situations.

OK, I suppose I am exaggerating a tad. Every good storyteller does (my story and I’m sticking to it). And I will freely admit I did a little clean up. With an industrial vacuum. You see, every time I look in my purse, I feel a little like Oscar Madison from The Odd Couple. It’s not that I’m messy. I just don’t clean up … right away. However, for the purposes of this post, I removed the “unidentifiables” from the bottom of my bag.

Thanks to Tracey Gee and Jessica Cale for allowing me to be part of this interesting tour. I am only a little scarred, and after you take a closer look at my belongings, you might be as well.

So (deep breath). What do I have in my purse? Well, fair traveler and lover of the weird, let’s have a look.

Oct 09 - Purse - Rosanna Leo

1 – Yogurt (usually two small tubs). I often eat on the run. Bad for you, I know, but mornings are hard and I don’t usually sit down for breakfast. Instead, I cart yogurt around with me. It does grow warmish, I concede, but I like it that way. If it’s too cold, it hurts my teeth. One of the yogurt tubs did once explode, covering the contents of my purse. It was gross. I did clean that mess, but I smelled blueberries for weeks.

2 – Spoons (for afore-mentioned yogurt). A girl needs spoons! My problem is I often forget to take them out of my purse at the end of the day. This means, by week end, my purse is a bacteria-riddled cutlery stomping ground. Seriously, I swear they’re multiplying.

3 – Tissues. I blow my nose a lot. I hate drips. However, where most neat and tidy ladies carry those cute little Kleenex pouches, I tend to stuff a bunch in my purse willy-nilly. So, yeah, some of them might be old…and used. I did warn you, didn’t I???

4 – A wallet full of reward cards I always forget to redeem. The only one I use religiously is Starbucks. Seriously, don’t touch my St. Arbuck’s card. I really should throw out the other cards for Payless, Hallmark, Cineplex, Hane’s, Ricki’s…you get the idea. Someone, cut me off.

5 – Five lipsticks and a lip balm in the shape of a pink skull. My mother always said, “Never go out without lipstick.” I have heeded her words since I was 18. My preferences are reds and pinks.

6 – Paper calendar/writing notebooks/pens. I’m a writer. What can I say? I always have a notebook and writing utensils with me. And my paper day timer is a godsend. I’d be lost without it. Although I am tech savvy (enough), I still like a paper calendar. And I always write my name and number in the front, like a third-grader, in case it gets lost.

7 – A discreet black pouch to carry maxi pads. I’m in my forties. Things are unpredictable. ‘Nuff said.

8 – My glasses case. It may look fancy with the Versace label, but it is covered in blue ink…because I carry pens for scribbling in my notebook. Sigh. I am constantly covered in ink, dairy products and old, wrinkled tissue bits.

9 – My cheap Walmart sunglasses. I never buy expensive sunglasses because the minute I get them home, I accidentally sit on them and break them. Whenever I buy them at Walmart for $10.99, they last forever. I could jump up and down on those suckers and they’ll refuse to break.

10 – Oh, and a very basic phone (with which I am photographing this mess) so I can stalk my children on Instagram. Seriously, boys. You have no secrets, my friends. I know everything and I see what you “like.” And, by the way, you’re grounded.

Oct 09 - Headshot - Rosanna Leo

Author bio:

Rosanna Leo is a multi-published, erotic romance author. Several of her books about Greek gods, selkies and shape shifters have been named Top Picks at Night Owl Romance and The Romance Reviews.

From Toronto, Canada, Rosanna occupies a house in the suburbs with her long-suffering husband, their two hungry sons and a tabby cat named Sweetie. When not writing, she can be found haunting dusty library stacks or planning her next star-crossed love affair.

A library employee by day, she is honored to be a member of the league of naughty librarians who also happen to write romance. Rosanna blogs at www.rosannaleoauthor.wordpress.com

Author Links:

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Rosanna-Leo/e/B007X5P4I8

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5826852.Rosanna_Leo

Tsu: http://www.tsu.co/RosannaLeo

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/rosannaleo/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/rleoauthor1

Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/LeoRosanna

Posted in Articles

Project Purse Dump: October 2, 2015

Hiya, hiya, hiya! I’m Gemma Brocato and I’m here to reveal the cluttered contents of my purse (or pocketbook as my Nona used to call it). Please don’t take the contents of my purse to be a sign that my mind is equally cluttered. You might however agree that my purse shelf is a bit of a mess. I have more handbags than I use. But honestly, I might need that little yellow bag, or the beautiful red one at some point in the future. I can’t bear to part with them.

Hiya, hiya, hiya! I’m Gemma Brocato and I’m here to reveal the cluttered contents of my purse (or pocketbook as my Nona used to call it). Please don’t take the contents of my purse to be a sign that my mind is equally cluttered. You might however agree that my purse shelf is a bit of a mess. I have more handbags than I use. But honestly, I might need that little yellow bag, or the beautiful red one at some point in the future. I can’t bear to part with them.

Here’s a list of what I dug out from the bottom of my bag (I tossed the used tissues, straw papers, candy wrappers and old receipts before I took the picture).

gemmaA – I carry six types of lip stuff. I don’t use five of them. But one item I use frequently from this grouping is the blue tube of Friction Block. My love for this product surpasses even the Magic Eraser. This miracle substance keeps blisters away from my toes when I wear those toe-pinching, heel-rubbing high heels I love. Find this one in the aisle with other bandage products. Trust me – you want this in your bag.

B – My wallet. It may not look it, but that thing is at least 20 years old. It fits well in the smaller purses that I carry but isn’t too small to get lost in my oversized bags.

C – Sunscreen with SPF 30. I am so pasty white that I never chance getting caught in the sunlight without it. I might burn up like Luke Evans in Dracula Untold.

D – My business card holder. True story, the TSA does not like it when this goes through their airport screener. My purse is searched almost every time. For them I leave the used tissues in it. Ooh – I’m not so nice afterall.

E – My sunglasses and Sylvia Day pouch from RWA 2014. I fangirled all over that lady in San Antonio. And held my head up after. My eyes are blue-green and glare bothers me, so I go nowhere without my sunglasses (PSA here – save your eyes from macular degeneration – wear sunglasses whenever you are outside).

F – An expired postcard for a discount at Designer Show Warehouse. I keep those bad boys way past their expiration dates. I can’t explain it.

G – Author SWAG. Never leave home without it.

H – Mints. No explanation necessary. But I should say, this brand is now my dad’s favorite.

I – A contact lens case. Don’t know why I carry this because I don’t generally have solution or even my glasses. I guess it just makes me feel more prepared to have it.

J – A traveling pill box because I always carry pain reliever, allergy medication and acid reducer. I do not like to feel icky and this little item has saved my life on many occasions. The lives of many of my friends as well, since they know I’m always packing. Another item the TSA doesn’t approve of.

K – A travel sized, folding hairbrush. I received this in an Estee Lauder Gift With Purchase 20 years ago. What can I say…when I like something, I keep it.

L – A spare USB drive. Hey- my life’s work is backed up on this scrap of plastic.

M – Car keys with the entry fob for the gym I very rarely attend. Honestly, I typically only go when I need to catch up on my reading. I hop on a treadmill and go to town.

N – A key chain with all the other fobs and loyalty tags I’ve amassed over the years.

O – My pad of dreams. No more notes on napkins, or receipts (remember, I cleared those all out). I’m high class all the way. I also carry lots of pens.

P – Bandaids, for those times when I’m careless and injure myself (or I put my friction block on too late and don’t stop the blisters). Again, my friends know I have these and will always ask if they need it.

Q – Another Estee Gift with purchase. This one is like my own little tool kit. I have super glue, Velcro, dental floss, a nail file, and anti-itch cream.

I know, I know. I carry the mommy bag. In spite of the fact that my children are grown-ups, the contents of my purse ensure I’m still prepared for whatever emergency arises.

gemmabrocato

About Gemma Brocato

Gemma Brocato was born with a book in her hands, and learned to read shortly after. She Able to read in a moving car without getting motion sickness, a fact she’s proud to share. After spending too many years making financial products and advisors sound sexy, she quit her full-time job to focus her efforts on contemporary romance novels. As a hybrid author, she has several indie titles as well as traditionally published work, with plans to add four more titles this year to her growing list of books.

Keep In Touch:

Here are my links to keep in touch with me.

https://www.facebook.com/gemma.brocato

www.Gemmabrocato.com

https://twitter.com/GemmaBrocato

https://instagram.com/gemma_brocato/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7229886.Gemma_Brocato

https://plus.google.com/+GemmaBrocato/posts

 

Posted in Articles

Project Purse Dump: September 25, 2015

Project Purse Dump

Sept 25 - Purse - Jessica Cale

Twenty-two lipsticks. Eleven bottlecaps. Seven black pens. Five magnets. Three tins of Altoids. Hello Kitty bandaids. A Mucha compact mirror from Paris, and a coin from House on the Rock.

These are a few of things I found this week when I emptied my purse out onto the floor.

In my defense, it is a very large purse. I have a few you might call “sensible” purses, brightly colored leather with understated embellishments and clever pockets, but the one I keep returning to is an oversized, flimsy thing I got at World Market for I think $8. It’s grey and it has crows on it. Size aside, it’s fairly nondescript, and goes well with my worn out jeans and band t-shirt aesthetic, plus I can fit half a library (and a hoodie!) into it should the occasion call for it. All of the things you see here were in it on a day that it was fairly empty, apart from my cat there, but he could have fit into it, too.

So what’s inside? It’s a kind of survival kit, plus a few extra bits and pieces I picked up along the way. Let’s take a closer look.

The essentials:

Seven black pens and two packs of post-its: I usually also carry a notebook full of graph paper with me for story ideas, but post-its and pens will do in a pinch. If I get story ideas–anything from bits of dialogue to major plot points–I write them on post its and stick them to the cards in my coin purse if I don’t have a notebook handy. Apparently I can also write notes on my phone, but this still feels too futuristic for me most days, and I usually forget.

Makeup: I don’t intentionally have twenty-two lipsticks on me at all times, it’s just that they gather in my purse. I don’t have any anywhere else in my house. I have them in my purse, in the coin purse inside, and more inside the Union Jack makeup bag. This makeup bag also contains hair pins, more ponytail holders than I have anywhere else, two eyeliners (one black, one purple), face powder, blush, mascara, orange scented roll on perfume, and a souvenir Mucha makeup mirror I got in Paris ten years ago. Because you never. fucking. know. Some days you just need eyeliner, and lots of it. I once loaned one of my friends a fire engine red Stila lipstick to write down her number for a random guy, and a couple years later, loaned the same lipstick to another friend when he was hosting punk rock karaoke as a kinky sailor. Who wore it better? My vote’s on Dave.

Coin purse: I haven’t carried a wallet in many years. In Britain, coins are far more common than paper bills, so carrying a coin purse was far more practical. I’ve been back in the states for a couple of years now, but I still carry the same coin purse I bought at New Look for a pound almost ten years ago. Today it’s full of all of my cards, some random change, a spare set of earbuds, post-its covered in story ideas, a customs declaration, a list of Edith Piaf songs (really), a guitar pick, some fortunes from cookies (“Don’t put off till tomorrow what can be enjoyed today…” in bed (snicker), hair pins, and more lipstick. Could you fit all of that into a wallet? Didn’t think so.

A coin from The House on Rock: How else will I make the crazy music play?

Randoms:

Bottlecaps and magnets: Okay, there’s a reason for this, I promise. My friend Lily gave these to me a couple of weeks ago so I could make some bottlecap magnets for my fridge. She made some and they look awesome, so I’m going to give it a shot.

Three tins of altoids: Why have three when one should be curiously strong enough? None of these are actually mine. My husband keeps buying them and asking me to hold them, so I put them in my purse. He forgets they’re there and buys more, asks me to hold them, and voila. Three tins. Can I offer you a mint?

Not pictured: The phone I use to obsessively ignore my email and ogle pictures of macarons on Instagram, my work badge, and my keys.

This might seem like a lot, but if you need to be minty or photo-ready, I’ve got your back. You know, just in case.

Bio: Jessica Cale is a recovering journalist writing historical romances out of a grey bedroom in North Carolina. Originally from Minnesota, she lived in Wales for several years where she earned a BA in History and an MFA in Creative Writing while climbing castles and photographing mines for history magazines. She kidnapped (“married”) her very own British prince (close enough) and is enjoying her happily ever after with him in a place where no one understands his accent. You can visit her at www.authorjessicacale.com.

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Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/9819997.Jessica_Cale

Posted in Articles

Project Purse Dump: September 18, 2015

I’m so meta. You can see, in the background, this blog posting as it’s being written
I’m so meta. You can see, in the background, this blog posting as it’s being written

Welcome to Week 1 of Project Purse Dump. I get to go first only so I can give the other wonderful people who’ve signed up a chance to get their blogs ready. Mine will be the dullest purse, I’m sure.

First of all, I don’t carry a purse. That alone is a blog post (not really, that would be cruel). I’m a backpack kinda gal and have been for about 30 years. I have come to the following two conclusions about this:

  1. It’s better for my body.
  2. I’m a Libra and hate to be unbalanced.

And here’s my stash, once more, with feeling:

Sept 18 - PurseDump - Tracey Gee

Here’s the tale of the tape, minus the tape.

  1. The two most essential drugs/supplements in my life, after Xylometazoline: Acetaminophen and Lactaid®. They go with me, everywhere.
  2. I live in Canada. And like most Canucks, I have a dizzying array of Tim Cards. Neither of these has any money on it. Bummer.
  3. Boring. My wallet and coin purse.
  4. Double-boring. My water bottle. You never know when you’ll be stranded and need water. One day, I’ll blog about my struggle (mostly over now, phew) with OCD. Not fake OCD, the real deal.
  5. My blood donor reminder card. I went last week. Yay! Cookies!
  6. Ok, now we have a story. This is my ultra-cool Swiss Army knife. I’ve carried one forever. The best thing about this one (my second in 30+ years, first one was stolen)? I was in Genève once a long long time ago and got locked in a public toilet. For years I wondered what on earth would I ever do with a fish scaler. Seriously? Me? I’m at two with Nature.

Then I went to Genève. Things to know about many parts of Europe? Pay toilets. Things to know about this particular pay toilet in Genève?

  1. If you catch the door before it closes and you haven’t put any coins in (I didn’t have any, I wasn’t being cheap, just desperate), you will be LOCKED IN THE TOILET.
  2. A lot of the public toilets are floor-to-ceiling walls for the cubicles. That means, they aren’t really cubicles. They’re tiny rooms.
  3. There is a drug problem in some parts of Europe and in some public toilets (even in really nice places), they use black light so those wanting to find a vein can’t do so.

So you get the idea: I was locked in a very dark tiny room in Switzerland. And I have a train to catch (once I find the train station) because I’m heading to Italy (the food’s better).

Oh, did I mention I’m claustrophobic?

And did I mention there is little-to-no sympathy for North Americans travelling in Europe without change for the toilet? That’s just an aside.

In panic, I rifled through my knapsack and dug up my Swiss Army knife and tried a few things before hitting the fish scaler and voila! I was in Milan later that same day eating farfalle al funghi, the morning just a bad memory.

  1. My teeny phone. I live on my teeny phone. Mummy loves her teeny phone. It’s an HTC Desire C and I have three of them.  No. Really. All I need: email, WhatsApp, and Instagram. It possibly works as a phone, too.
  2. A watch. Yes. It’s true. I wear a watch. I hate having to look at my phone for the time because I don’t want to look like one of those people who owns 3 HTC Desire C phones.
  3. My comb. Just in case I get a moment to actually comb my hair. That happened in 2014, and I look forward to it happening again this fiscal.
  4. What kind of mother would I be if I didn’t have my Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle gel pen?
  5. Don’t laugh. It’s the schedule for the Y by my house. I circle classes on it (which I never attend).
  6. My only cosmetic: lip balm. That’s it.
  7. My key chain. See that carabiner clip? I hang my keys on my bra strap. It’s the only way I can find my keys. I never keep them in my purse except when I’m NOT out. That spine on my key chain? That from my evil chiropractor. It’s a great ice breaker.
  8. My teeny tiny travel New Testament, Psalms, and Proverbs. Because you never know when you need a quiet moment with God.

About Tracey Gee

Sept 18 - Headshot - Tracey GeeBright light! Bright light! (Sure, you saw Gremlins, didn’t you?)

I’m a crabby old bat. Easily distracted. Portly, perimenopausal, whiffy yet whimsical. I keep the BFG 9000 in my girdle. In my spare time, I eat stress. Lots of it.

I’m the O/O of LOVExtra.com, my newest binary baby who’s about to turn one, this November. My personal blog is the aptly named Old Enough and Ugly Enough. J

I’m trying desperately to write a book which is worthy of a publisher’s notice.  In the absence of that, I play piano and classical guitar—badly—and go to Zumba. My own true love.

eschew malls.