Sunday, August 19, 2012

What do you do when...


In the midst of emotions that run deeper than you care to admit, when they just sneak up on you and hit you with all that they have and tell you that this is it….what do you do?
When words are written – sometimes with great thought and sometimes not – and have a profound effect on someone who is known only through the electronic giant known as the e-world…what do you do? 

When in a particularly down mood, whether it was from missing family or being alone or the past rearing its ugly head or just wanting a friend to hang with for a while…what do you do?
After years and years of giving yourself to others, you find you are no longer needed…what do you do?
When you realize your work in life isn’t your life’s work…what do you do?
I’m not sure what you would do….and I am not sure where this rambling is leading to…but I know what I would do….
Kindle, my friend, I welcome thee as an escape (for a moment or two) from reality….

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Finding Your Niche...

It’s hard sometimes finding your niche…who you are…what you love to do…how you present it…and that is in real life then you add in social media: blogging, twittering, facebooking, emailing, interviewing, reviewing and then there is your own writing, editing, and for some family and outside careers…. And the ultimate challenge of: KEEPING UP WITH IT ALL.

Due to some networking through the above mentioned sites, I want to introduce you to some people who have helped me find my niche in the social media world. The bottom line is each one of these persons I am about to mention are about helping others succeed. And that, in and of itself, is worth mentioning alone.

E-Reader House:
It all started when I met Alan from E-Reader House; a home for independent authors and independently minded readers. Please be assured you are actively encouraged to post your books, reviews, etc.  A chance to find the hidden gems in the e-book world.  

He was the first one to do an interview of my book and I think when I “liked” his page he had less than 200 “likes.” He is now over 1,200 “likes”. You can visit his page at: https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-e-reader-House/289972744414836

How does the e-reader House contribute to authors? The real question is how does the e-reader NOT contribute to authors? Doing interviews….listing authors by last names and adding short posts and links about them…and continuously posting them. Great FREE exposure by them for authors. Thank you Alan and the e-reader house for all you do!  

Wiz Green- The Wizard's Cauldron

Top quality Independent reading experience and networking. Visit his blog spot at http://greenwizard62.blogspot.co.uk/  to see interviews from authors all around the world. His support of the Indie writer is awesome and I have had the pleasure to get to know him as a friend as well.  An interview with him is also featured in his blogspot! Visit his facebook page to keep up with this up and coming interviewer and writer: https://www.facebook.com/wiz.green.9 

Wendy Steele/Destiny of angelsnovels:

I have had the pleasure of messaging Wendy back and forth and I think she is one fantastic person! Honest, encouraging, open and wanting to see others succeed and thus she produces the following on her facebook page:  https://www.facebook.com/?ref=tn_tnmn#!/destinyofangelsnovel

Host of BOB – BONAZNA – rules: post the back of your book to her page, recommend another author’s book and scroll down and vew and share other author’s works

Host of SHAREFEST - rules: post your book to her page, recommend another author’s book and scroll down and vew and share other author’s works

You are sure to find a book that fits your genre!


So in light of the awesome company that I am finding myself in, you may be wondering where I might be “fitting in” in the social media. I would like to share with you bookreviews I have done on others books. I hope that it will be helpful in deciding if you would like to purchase their books.  

Without Further Ado… 

Carla by Mark Barry - - 5 stars

Remember the scene in Forrest Gump where he is sitting on a bench waiting for a bus to go see his "Jenny" and he is telling his story as people come and go?

Well, I felt like I was in a pub, on a barstool, as he drank his ale and I, mine, and he spoke quietly as he told me his story about Carla and him. He spoke from his perspective and quite literally I was enamored. Being taken into the depths of his mind, thoughts, actions and reactions to situations real or perceived was an amazing and sometimes scary journey.

Scary....as in....I know that kind of feeling....kind of scary.

Carla is a beautiful person who has been projected to be exactly who she is: an open minded, busy, young, and attractive woman who knows her mind and also deals with her own set of insecurities giving Carla a mixture of attributes that makes an appeal to the reader.

Sharna is the dedicated friend to Carla and it is interesting to watch how she projects herself as Carla's protector when meeting John and then the development of their friendship with Carla being the vine that connects them.

John is an older man who struggles internally with each encounter - perceived or real - that occurs. He has come a full circle in his life and finally has an understanding of who and what he is; both the good and the bad. You will fall in love with John and then you will love to hate his actions or reactions. You will cheer for John but in the next breath you will berate him. You will definitely be able to relate to John at some point in the story!

And by the time you get to the ending....oh my... No spoiler here! You must read to find out; but, I promise you one thing, it won't be what you expect!


Bridging the Gap by Kate Warren - - 5 stars


Author Kate Warren has spun a tale that has believable characters that you will love to love and love to hate. Each person is portrayed true to form and it is within this portrayal that kept me turning pages to find out what is coming next. I found myself on a rollercoaster of emotions that left me empathizing with Ellen, Lanie, Stephanie, DJ, Matt and even Chloe.

This is a drama that captures all the emotions of divorce, life and death, endings and new beginnings. If you are deliberating on purchasing this book, I am here to tell you, you won't be disappointed as Author Kate Warren delivers a book worth reading!

 Lust, Money & Murder by Mike Wells - - 4 stars


As with the other reviewers, I am not much for series books; therefore, there was some gap in between reading part II and part III. However, I was able to pick up the storyline and follow the characters through the conclusion of this three part story. As with the previous two parts, the author did an exceptional job in keeping the characters true to form and keeping the action moving. I highly recommend reading this book all the way through.

Photo Finish by Terry Ambrose – 5 stars


I have just finished reading Photo Finish and I absolutely fell in love with the strong, well-defined, very humanly portrayed characters. I found myself relating to the places mentioned in the book as I currently live on Oahu. I found myself laughing, being disturbed, mystified, and having "ah-ha" moments as the mystery unraveled. The suspense and action kept you motivated to know what was coming on the next page.

I don't want to give away this novel or the ending so I am going to end this review with this: Photo Finish is a well thought out mystery placed in a beautiful location with characters that will leave you with a sense of having new friends....for life. This story is a must read and I am looking forward to more of Terry Ambrose's future novels!

Tender Graces by Kathryn Magendie - - 5 Stars


Just wanted you to know I had downloaded your book, Tender Graces, a few weeks ago but with my work schedule I could only read a short bit at a time until this weekend. I have relaxed today losing myself in your story so powerfully and wonderfully weaved that it threw me back into time surrounding me with raw emotions of a family life who has done their best - having qualities of sacrifice and selfishness, compassion and greed, love and loss, decisions and consequences, understand and resolution. Thank you for writing such a beautiful, heartfelt, and painful journey of a family's life.

 Ripper, My Love by Glynis Smy - - 5 Stars


Ahh to fall in love with a story - this is exactly what happened as I met Kitty, Sarah, Arthur, James and Patrick. Kitty is the woman you just love to love and Sarah is too! I even fell in love with Sally...and then heartbroken at her situation. Arthur, James and Patrick are all vying for the affections of Kitty leading to a story that grabs your attention, holds it and delivers the warm fuzzy feeling as you read the last words....Now, I can't say too much more because then I would ruin it but I do have to say this: It is a wonderful story written by a talented writer - Good Job Glynis Smy on your debut novel! And I am looking forward to reading "Maggie's Child" later this year after it is released!
The Final Possession by A.M. Hunter – 5 Stars


Once I started reading this book, I could not put it down. Very articulate and suspenseful. I am eagerly awaiting for her next book to arrive to the shelves!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Sea Tiger Dive

Aloha my friends,


It is August 3, 2012  and I began my day at 6:30 am after I spent the night tossing and turning in fear that I would miss the alarm clock. A scuba dive was the reason for this sleepless night. I haven’t been scuba diving in three years and am pretty excited. Unsure of how the traffic was, I left early and arrived thirty minutes earlier than planned. The shop is small where we met but was filled with nice people who are comical as well as knowledgeable
Arriving at the marina, the docks were beginning to fill with other people who were going out to dive. Our first destination was the Sea Tiger, the deepest regularly dived wreck on Oahu, which is a 168 foot vessel that was sunk in 199 as an artificial reef.
It did not take very long at all the reach the wreckage off the Waikiki coastline. After the six of us geared up for the dive, I was the second one to step off the boat and enter the salty ocean. The anticipation of the dive built up all around me or, more specifically, inside me. The fear of going down one hundred feet underwater with only a mouthpiece connected to one cyclinder of air brought a level of anxiety that I hadn’t felt in a long time and inhaling the air came at a fast rate. Concentrating on slowing down my breathing, I manage to move to the front of the boat to the guide rope as the others descended into the water.
From past experiences I know that it takes me longer to equalize than others and therefore all the other divers were already at the Sea Tiger when I arrived. Descending, I watched their air bubbles escape and float to where the sun was shining through the water and it was a marvelous view. As I approached the deck of the ship there lying on it was a sea turtle, dozing, oblivious to the two legged creatures swimming around it.
Bravely, I let go of the guide rope and started to swim trying not to let the panic rise to the surface. I felt all alone in the beautiful sea of blue and yet I knew I wasn’t as one of the dive master’s was babysitting me. Of course the dive master was nineteen years old and shame on me but that didn’t build my confidence! We swam around the boat and saw the different sea creatures. A seashell the size of a football, a school of butterfly fishes and then the skeleton in the lower deck – which took only a second to realize that it was a prop set up for those who dove.
Continuing to swim around the ship, something spooked a school of fish (approximately one hundred of them) and I hovered in the water as the fish came right up to my mask and then veered right or left. A magnificent feeling of awe and wonderment overcame me and all anxiety of the depth of water I was in left.
Being the slowest in a group isn't always a bad thing. As I turned the corner of the ship after being swarmed by the beautiful fish, there in its beauty, is a spotted eagle ray. Its fins flapping as it swam six feet in front of me; the tail extended a good two to three feet behind it. The sunlight reached into the depths and the eagle ray shimmered as it went on by.
Unfortunately, I did not get to swim through the ship due to the amount of time it took me to descend and it was time to ascend. But once again, slowly I ascended and being slow came to be a bonus as the sea turtle awakened and floated vertically upward with me. I felt as if I made a friend, although no introduction was made.
At the three minute safety stop I watched as the turtle continued upward, as he needed no stop and reached the surface. The waves were rough and the turtle bounced around only about a minute before deciding to descend once more into the blue depths of the salty water.
Once in the boat the crew made sure that I was okay, all the members of the group were accounted for and we started off to our next location. It was only a short distance however and we had an interval of time that we had to wait before continuing with out next dive.
Tortilla chips and water was provided; however, I declined both. Vic, one of the dive masters on board, took the tortilla chips and started feeding the fish. It was amazing to see all the fish swarm around the boat for a few crumbs of something uniquely different to them. In the distance I could still see the Waikiki shoreline and realized that when I went paddle boarding on the fourth of July in the area, I wasn’t that far from the wreckage.
As I sat on the boat with it swaying with the waves I realized something very important. I did not inherit sea legs from my daddy as I did his blue eyes. I was beginning to get seasick. My dad spent twenty-two years in the US Navy and although I am unaware of how much time that was actually on a boat in the ocean my admiration of him grew; as did my nausea. It was a relief when I heard them say it was time to put on gear.
We descended approximately sixty feet into the water and after we were all assembled as a group, Vic prodded a hole and out shot an octopus. He caught it and it latched onto his arm after spraying a cloud of ink. Of course, if you know me, I couldn’t resist playing with the octopus. He put it on my arm and I stared eye to eye with it – I will never look at calamari the same again. And I knew that if my younger son was with me, he would have asked if we could keep it as a pet.
The others grew bored with the octopus still suctioned to my arm but I didn’t. Another underwater friend I had made and I was pleased to see he kept me company for another ten minutes and then unlatched himself and sped away to find him a new home. Salutations to you, my new found underwater friend.
The corals were beautiful with a mixture of brown, pink, orange, green and blue – pastels and bright colors mixed together. The underwater current was stronger that at the wreck so it was interesting to see the bodies of the fish and the other scuba divers sway back and forth with the current. In all actuality it was comical.
We came to a wall where Vic pointed out to me this spongy purple thing which he had me touch – I have no idea what it was but it actually felt like the suction cups of the octopus that I befriended earlier. Moving on, he found another hole and allowed one of the other divers to fish out the octopus – when he had no luck, Vic went in and fished it out.
At this point, Alexa, another dive master, had joined our group. Vic had the octopus in his hand and threw it at Alexa. The octopus suctioned it to her mask and head. We were all laughing at the spectacle this made. Later onboard the boat she remarked that she laughed so hard that her mask had filled with water.
Unfortunately it was at this time that I was not paying attention to where my legs were and I got what is commonly referred to as a Hawaiian tattoo. In other words, I got the needles of a sea urchin embedded in the lower part of my leg. The needles are so fragile that they break off instead of being pulled out. Over the next few days where they needles poked my leg, it will puss up and when I pop the puss the needle will come out. Although it was throbbing and painful, I continued the dive which was only another fifteen minutes.
After resurfacing and boarding the boat I carefully peeled off my wetsuit and got many eyes on my injured leg and quite a few jokes and related experiences. Unfortunately, my seasickness returned and even though it had been six hours since I had last eaten, I could tell my breakfast wanted to resurface. I was thankful when it didn’t.
The dive with Captain Mac’s Diving was a unique experience that I am glad that I went on and I am regretful that the camera I bought to take on the trip had broken and I didn’t get the experience recorded on film. Maybe soon, I will get to do it again with a working camera. Or maybe, I will choose another dive – maybe a cave or an aircraft.
Until later; Mahalo, my friends!

Friday, August 3, 2012

The Dance

Who would have thought that I would be shivering in 83 degree temperatures in August? Not I that is for sure. It is August 2, 2012 and I am at Electric Beach, Hawaii which is near Makakilo City. The birds are cooing in the background while the wind is chilling me after a bout of snorkeling.
In the water, the current is strong and snorkeling gorgeous. The different species of fish and coral leaves me stunned in its beauty and I am carried away to another time and another place as I drift off to sea.  I am being careful though as I am on my own and there are many fishing boats not too far away. I have been told by the locals that in early morning – between 6 and 8 am – there are pods of dolphins that come in this area to feed and play. How amazing would that be to swim with wild dolphins in the salty ocean?
But the point of this blog isn’t to tell you about how cold I am, or how beautiful the scenery is. Nope the point of this blog is about a man; a man that I don’t know and who does not know that he is being observed.
The building to the right of the parking lot is long with a concrete floor, concrete columns and has a roof that is not continuous. The stairs lead down to the floor and there he stood. Late fifties to early sixties, short in stature and slim. His weather faced pointed downward for only a moment as he lifted it, opened up his arms and started swaying to a beat only he could hear. 
Dressed in jeans that are worn and dirty, old boots that has seen seasons of wear and a common red t-shirt available at any local Wal-Mart; he circles the pavilion floor – one step to the right, move forward, two to the left, spin and on and on and on he went oblivious to anyone watching. He was lost in his world of freedom, of music and unaware of the impression he was having on me.
His face adorned with a smile as he concentrated on his steps, keeping true to the rhythm – I wondered what girl he was looking forward to dancing with. Or maybe he already had and just wanted to be a better dancer to impress her even more.  Was it is long committed wife? Or maybe a new love who has entered his life? Could be it was as simple as an approaching father-daughter dance since school has already started here? Would the girl even guess that he spent time practicing his steps....for her? But at any rate what struck me most – was how free he was – uninhibited to relax and move without feeling self-conscious by how he looked to others or even worries that this world can bring down upon him.
When was the last time that you felt free enough to let go to dance regardless if people were watching – when was the last time relaxation felt so good? Maybe it’s time to call a time out from whatever is going on and spend some time kicked back in Island Time Zone regardless if you are on an island, by the beach or smack dab in the heart of a city. Taking time to relax and block out all the worries that is pressing upon you. To slow down and say….I am in awe of this world- and its beauty- in which I live.
Being on the Island, I am definitely adjusting to what is called “Island Time”. Though many on the Island have to work two jobs to live here due to the high cost of living; from those I have met, they hold family and Island time in high esteem.
The longer I stay on this Island, the more spoiled I become in its endless beauty and of course the new and coveted time zone – The Island Time Zone.