Typically I would watch something in this genre over reading it, but the book description piqued my interest from the beginning. First off, let me say kudos to the author for writing such an intriguing dark fantasy. The plot centers around Jaz, a teenage girl that is about to experience a life changing discovery.
The book starts off with an intense incident happening to Jaz and she has strong hesitation in accepting the given explanation. This presents such a problem it disrupts her livelihood sending her into therapy with her mom’s sister. The story builds with each chapter. Then enter her dad’s sister, an aunt she knew nothing about who shows up offering to take her on a trip to a spa resort. She goes with her aunt; however, the trip is not as she thought and instead of relaxing as she had planned, she finds herself held captive. Only she doesn’t get it is a safety precaution, for herself and others until she is willing to accept newfound information about her origin. And, the fact that she is so stubborn doesn’t help matters. Weeks continue to pass by and accidentally, she gains possession of a diary, a book that holds valuable information and answers questions from the past and gives insight to current situations she’s facing.
I like how A.Z. vividly describes every little detail in-depth perfectly. There are numerous characters throughout the book, though I only connected with the main ones in the center of the storyline. And, let me say she does them proper justice in providing layers of their presence so that readers can get to know them well. Her book doesn’t tell it shows one hundred percent. Every emotion I felt, as well as every event taking place, held graphic elements, which intensified my reading experience with this story. There are two that stand out the most: 1) A fight scene between Jaz and Fraya. The intensity level can be compared to watching a WWE match. 2) The other was a scene toward the end of the book in which Jaz play tug and war with conflicting emotions. It was easy to relate with her in having to deal with the effects of decisions made by one key person playing a prominent role in her life. My opinion is A.Z. did a splendid job bringing that moment out to the fullest.
The only issue that left me unhappy was the partially unresolved ending. And let me be clear, the ending wasn’t bad. It’s just a preference thing on my part for I like things cleared up at the end. Overall, Beasthood is a well written book from beginning to end. I gave the story four stars, and I wish there was more flexibility to do something in between, if so I would have given it 4.75 stars. So I look forward to following the series, I need my answers:-) Miss Green you’ve gained a fan here.
When I write I use my words as a communication source to express my ideas, turning those thoughts into novels or short stories. Writing for me is as natural as breathing and I do it because I love it.
This brings me to marketing guru and best-selling author, Seth Godin. He’s been called the “the ultimate entrepreneur for the Information Age” and in an article I recently read, he generously offers nineteen pieces of advice for aspiring writers.
The top three were really solid suggestions so I’ve listed them below:
1. Lower your expectations. The happiest authors are the ones that don’t expect much.
2. The best time to start promoting your book is three years before it comes out. Three years to build a reputation, build a permission asset, build a blog, build a following, build credibility and build the connections you’ll need later.
(I think this is good advice, however speaking only for myself, this one is unrealistic to me because I’m not that patient.)
3. Pay for an editor. Not just to fix the typos, but to actually make your ramblings into something that people will choose to read.
(If your budget does not allow for an editor then you should really make good use of your spelling and grammar check.)
Hope some of the tips helps some. Have a great day.
Gessica sat her desk listening to the sound of her stomach rumbling. Only five more minutes until lunch, and it couldn’t get here fast enough. Demi entered the office, distracting her as she returned from running an errand. Not that she’s a germaphobe or anything, but Demi’s first instinct when returning from outside is to go straight to the hand sanitizer conveniently located in the reception area for all to use.
“Darn it!” Demi shrieked while she scanned over her attire.
Gessica had not seen what had happened, but guessed at what Demi’s irritation stemmed from. “Did you do what I think you did?”
Tami passed by and noticed that sanitizer had splashed over a good portion of Demi’s slacks. “You better run to the kitchen and wipe some of that off, so it doesn’t stain.”
“Yeah, you got a point,” she answered as she followed Tami, headed in the same direction.
“Oh my God!” Demi shrieked once again.
Now what’s wrong?Gessica thought as she heard the commotion. Then she gazed upon Demi in route back to her office.
“Hey, what happened,” Gessica called out. “I heard you all the way from here.” However, before Demi could respond, Gessica noticed the culprit.
“Oh my gosh! How hard did you hit the nozzle?!”
There was a long wide stretch of wetness that ran down Demi’s slacks. She was the only person in the office that smacked on the nozzle as if she was playing on the television game show, Family Feud.
“It squirted out, but I didn’t realize how bad it was until I saw it under that darn bright light in the kitchen,” snorted Demi.
Gessica laughed. “What did I tell you about attacking that bottle? Now it looks like you pee’d your pants.” She was not aware that anyone was listening until she heard laughter emanate from Bronwyn and Anna.
Demi rolled her eyes and walked away, only for Anna to catch sight of what Gessica had referred to. “She’s right; you do look as if you had an accident. You better go back to your office and hide out until it dries,” she exclaimed as she chuckled.
“Whatever, you both are crazy!” Demi replied, as she sauntered out of sight.
About an hour later, Gessica returned from lunch. She needed change for the bus, but had not wanted to venture outside. If anyone had it, Anna would for sure.
“Hey Anna, would you happen to have change for a five dollar bill?” She asked as she stood leaning against her cubicle wall.
In her dainty, graceful fashion, she replied, “Um, yeah I do,” she said and reached down into a drawer to retrieve her bag pulling out her change purse.
“I knew you would have it,” Gessica confirmed, “you always keep your granny change purse filled.”
“Hey, excuse you!”
“What? It’s the truth. You and Demi are the only ones on Earth that won’t use a debit card and keep cash on hand.”
Anna simply chuckled not paying much attention to Gessica. It didn’t matter that Gessica constantly teased her about keeping her change purse stuffed with dollars.
“What are y’all talking about?” Demi asked as she marched toward them.
“None ya,” replied Gessica.
“It’s for us to know—none of your business. That’s what I meant.” Demi just stared. That same cat-like stare that she gave everyone instead of mouthing off and saying what she wanted to, not knowing that her eyes said it all. She was one funny person.
Bronwyn went shopping over lunch. When she returned she had on the cutest knee length boots that accentuated the skirt she wore. They were a brownish-taupe suede boot with a high heel. Demi’s other name should be shoe whore. She just needed to see how they looked on her.
“Unzip them and let me put them on for a moment.”
“There you go demanding again,” Anna said.
“How do you even know that she is okay with you putting your feet in her new boots?” Gessica asked.
“Oh, she doesn’t care. Shut up!”
“It’s not nice to say shut up, Demi,” Anna stated.
“Yeah, what she said,” Gessica concurred.
“Shut up,” she repeated again.
“Pfft. How rude,” Gessica replied laughing.
Truth of the matter, Bronwyn didn’t care, and readily removed them for Demi to put on her feet. They both have a size 7, baby feet, so it was a perfect fit. The second Demi stood, her inner model came out; she strutted back and forth, sashaying her hips as if she were dancing on a bar. Then she started singing. Well her version of singing, because every song she sings always end up sounding like opera.
She started strutting again as if on a runway, stops, swivels around, and sings, “These boots were made for walking.”
She repeated the same chorus about ten times since they were the only lyrics of the song she knew. And, as she performed, the girls stood there in hysterical laughter as they watched her humorous performance. You would have thought it would have ended there, but it didn’t, and her rendition of Umbrella, by Rhianna, immediately followed.
“Under my umbrella, ella, ella, ella, ay, ay,” she chirped out as she held on to a pretend umbrella while she danced around.
She was one comical chick, and you couldn’t help, but crack up at her silliness. When she tripped on the carpet, that’s when Bronwyn made the decision to ask for her boots back before the goof ball broke her heel.
“You are such a nut!” Gessica voiced.
“But you love me…mwah,” said Demi, as she blew dramatic kisses.
What can anyone say except there’s nothing like seeing Demi act like a fool to lighten up the day. Gotta love her!
I hope you are enjoying reading G’s Charismatic Bunch. The series will run until May 1st (an extra week thrown in for the Friday I missed). However, I would be happy to postpone the date for the time being if I could get some positive feedback. With that being said, please participate in the poll below. I plan on making a decision by April 30th according to the results from the survey.
Big plans after work for G and her Bunch are going out to dinner; all except for Anna because she’s sick. They decided on a nearby diner and bar that was reasonably priced. The decor…well it bordered on bad, but in the right light (dim) it was fine, and the food wasn’t bad.
What they didn’t know was that it was karaoke night. That would explain the peculiarly large crowd of people that occupied the vicinity. As they entered, Demi immediately spotted an empty booth, and made a bee line for it as the establishment was filled up fast.
“What do you say girls, shall we start off with some Kamikaze shots?”
“Sure,” they all agree in unison.
The drinks arrived, and after a quick toast they guzzled down their alcoholic beverages. “That went way too fast; I’m going to order us another round,” stated Demi.
“Not for me,” said Tami, “I need something a little milder—order me an Amaretto on the rocks.”
“You’re being a party pooper,” Demi replied.
“Maybe so, but I do need to be able to drive home, so I’m sticking with one Amaretto.”
“She does have a point, Demi,” Bronwyn added.
“Fine, just means there will be more for us,” she gleefully pointed out.
“Maybe we should limit you to one shot, your mouth hasn’t stopped yet,” said Gessica as the women erupted in laughter.
The waitress returned and along with ordering dinner, Demi took it upon herself to get three more rounds of Kamikazes and three glasses of Captain Morgan with Coke. They chatted and enjoyed their drinks until the food arrived. It was during dinner that they realized Karaoke was about to start.
“You should get up there and sing Bronwyn. You have a lovely voice,” Demi advocated.
Demi was the one that always persuaded the other person to do something. She would be a fantastic campaign manager. Gessica sat next to Bronwyn and peered over in her direction as she awaited the response. About now the drinks had taken effect because Bronwyn’s eyes looked a little glassy. And, although Gessica and Demi had consumed the same amount, the only effect that it had on them that it made them was more happy than usual. Tami of course was nearly sober because she was still babysitting her ONE Amaretto on the rocks.
“Ahh, Bronwyn, I think that guy is staring at you,” Demi stated.
She whipped her head around to see, “What guy?” She slurred.
It was then that she saw he motioned for her to come over, and to their astonishment she did. He was a black guy, maybe about fifty-something who looked like pimp daddy from the 70’s, dressed all in black. All meaning long black leather coat, black dress hat, black sunglasses (not that he even needed them because it was evening) and even a black cane. He was the funniest looking character they had seen the whole evening. As soon as Bronwyn returned to the table, they pounced as they wanted to know what he wanted.
“Soooooooo,” everyone questioned.
“He wants to sing a song with me.”
“You said no right?” asked Gessica.
“I said yes.” They cracked up laughing.
“What song?” Demi asked.
“Okay…well this should be interesting,” said Tami as she tried to be nonjudgmental. However, Gessica and Demi just didn’t care what blurted out of their mouths.
“What the heck? I don’t know if I can keep from laughing when you get up there. This is going to be one hell of a funny sight,” Gessica declared.
“Bronwyn and Pimp Daddy, wow, I need to record this. One of y’all, get your phone camcorder ready,” Demi affirmed as she caused herself and everyone else to laugh.
“Why are you giving her a hard time Demi, all she’s doing is singing, not marrying the guy. Don’t worry B, I got your back,” Gessica defended.
“Aww thanks G,” she said as her words ran together.
She threw her arm around Gessica’s shoulder and garbled, “G, doesn’t matter if you’re black or white, I still love you and I know you have my bat.” She hiccupped. “I mean back.” The women started laughing again.
“I know what you meant B, and I love you to,” Gessica said as she hugged her back.
The conversation ended with Bronwyn and Pimp Daddy called up to sing. Bronwyn has an extremely good voice, and Pimp Daddy wasn’t bad, but he wasn’t exactly impressive either. The duo was going okay at first; that is until Pimp Daddy thought that he was a famous music artist and tried to out sing Bronwyn.
He was acting like they were Sonny and Cher, getting all close in her face as he loudly belted out his lyrics. This guy became engrossed in the song, and as his vocals got louder and louder, his movements became more dynamic as he engaged with the seated crowd.
Tami, Gessica and Demi, laughed so hard they were in tears. Poor Bronwyn; they were sure she was aware of what was happening, but she handled it nicely. To their amazement, she managed to stay focused and continued on, ignoring the fact that he was making an ass out of himself.
I don’t think the song could have ended fast enough for her, for as soon as it was over she was off the stage in a flash. Bronwyn already knew that she was not going to hear the last of this fiasco. For the next half hour, they gave her a hard time as they cracked jokes and imitated the performance. They were being a pain in the ass, but she knew it was all in fun.
“It’s time to head out of this joint and go home. I’m glad I was able to make everyone’s evening enjoyable,” said Bronwyn jokingly.
“Yup, that and then some ten times over,” said Gessica laughing.
“We won’t ever forget this day Bronwyn,” stated Demi.
“Dinner for four – $60, alcoholic beverages – $40, but Bronwyn singing with Pimp Daddy…priceless!” Tami acknowledged. G’s Bunch exploded into laughter as they gathered their belongings and headed home.
I hope you enjoyed the third installment of the series; Have a great weekend!
The past week was extremely busy, but as things have finally returned to a regular grind I was finding it hard to get back into my writing routine. I needed to jumpstart my brain, and I turned to the solution that always seem to work for me—inspiration.
As much as I fancy writing (which is a lot), there are times that I stumble upon that dense wall, and that’s when I need a dose of inspiration. And, the best part is there’s loads of it, and it’s free. I have a top six list that I usually go by:
1) Reading – this can be anything from books, to magazines, or even blogs;
2) Forums – here I can gather useful information and see what other self-published authors have encountered, overcome, or learned along the way;
3) Music – it relaxes me and allows my thoughts to start pouring out;
4) Friends – they help without even trying, and I get my best ideas from them because they are such a passionate group of individuals that are downright engaging;
5) Dreams – They always come through for me when I get stuck in figuring out a story or in helping to decide which direction to take my characters;
6) Google – The results are lasting and all you have to do is look.
So here’s your chance, tell me what things you use for inspiration? I would enjoy hearing them.
Every day is a busy day at work, but every now and then there needs to be a distress mechanism, and that’s where Demi and Gessica come into play. Why them? Because out of the bunch, they are the adventures ones. Now in Demi’s defense it must be stated that even though she is the sweetest person ever, she’s the craziest of the group. But, even the sweet ones have flaws, and Demi’s is that she’s a talkaholic. Not like gossiping, but better defined as not knowing when to stop talking. Better yet, if you need to get something done and you’re pressed for time, a good note would be to avoid Demi like the plague.
Getting back to business, Gessica cleared all random thoughts out of her head, and was fully engrossed in her work until Demi interrupted her concentration.
“Bronwyn!” Demi yelled from her office.
“Yes?” Bronwyn sighed, slightly startled from the shrieking sound of Demi’s voice that cut through her like fingernails on a chalkboard.
“I need you, come here!” She demanded.
Anna is right smack in the middle between Demi and Bronwyn, so she had to speak up. Swiveling her chair around, she turned toward Demi’s location and shouted, “You are so darn bossy. What happened to asking?!” Anna questioned. There’s was no response, and as usual, Demi ignored the question.
Bronwyn stood and shouted back, “Give me a second, I need to finish up something first!”
Unable to sit idled a minute more, Gessica decided to pay Demi a visit. “Hey, we do have telephones in the office; you could have easily buzzed her.”
Demi started waving her hands around as she began speaking. “She’s right down the hallway,” she explained as she pointed down the corridor. “It’s a waste of time picking up the phone when she can easily hear me.”
I swear she is the most animated person I know, Gessica thought as she observed Demi.
“I hope you know that what you said is completely ridiculous,” Gessica replied twisting up her lips.
Demi said nothing; she only sat there on her chair looking like the Queen of Sheba. There were not too many people who Gessica knew that would be caught at work wrapped in a zebra striped heating blanket; a blanket that looked more like a Snuggie. Demi’s greenish, cat eyed stare had started to annoy Gessica. What she wanted to do was grab a hold of Demi’s chair and spin her around like a top. Those green eyes of hers indeed would look crazy then, Gessica thought as a big smile appeared. Oh wow, that’s a mean thought, but oh would it be amusing.
“What’s so funny?!”
“You are dear. Why do you always have to stare at me like I’m insane? You don’t have a problem speaking your mind, and that’s 24/7.”
Demi remained silent, but truth be known there’s not many rare moments that renders her speechless. One can only assume what she’s thinking. Demi sat there looking like Ms. Conservative, but low and behold, the real her in true form is feisty and full of entertainment. And, unless you knew Demi, you would never know about her wild streak. It was something she kept on the DDL (Demi’s Down Low).
Gessica returned to her desk, and about an hour later she noticed Demi on her way to the ladies room. A light bulb flashed in her head, and just as she was about to play her cards she observed Bronwyn headed in the same direction.
Darn, sorry Bronwyn, but in order to get her I guess I’m going to have to sacrifice you in the process, Gessica thought. It’s now or never, so Gessica asked Anna to answer her calls. Not wanting her to miss out on the action, she alerted Anna that she should stand idle by the door because something was about to go down.
Anna’s eyes twinkled in excitement, and she whispered, “What are you about to do?”
Gessica chuckled. Anna has the persona of a Princess Grace, so dainty and graceful. But, since she’s also part of the bunch, sometimes that grace got thrown out the window. After Gessica shared her master plan, Anna stood out of view by the door as Gessica continued on down the hallway. It intersected with another hall that led to the ladies room, so she took refuge out of sight, right at the connected point. She stood there and waited…and waited…and still waited for the girls to exit.
“Oh my goodness, did they fall into their toilets?” Anna whispered to Gessica as she stuck her head out the door.
“How am I supposed to know? Shhh, be patient,” she whispered back.
Gessica heard the phone ringing, and knew that Anna would need to go answer it. However, before the door closed, she could have sworn she heard Anna mumble some profanities. Yeah, she’s no English maiden no more. She’s corrupt just like the rest of us.Too funny, Gessica thought.
Finally, the bathroom door opened, and the sound of giggles heightened as the two got closer. Just as, they were about to make the turn headed in Gessica’s direction, she jumped out in front of them.
“Aaaahhhhh!” Gessica yelled as she appeared before them like some deranged maniac. Bronwyn and Demi immediately stopped dead in their tracks. No, stopped is wrong, they jumped inches of the floor, and their faces displayed a heart-stopping look of surprise. Their eyes were as large as saucers, and both had the same reaction as they shrieked loudly. This was better than she planned, and Gessica barely could catch her breath from laughing so intensely. She laughed so hard she cried, and was all bent over in a heap. Gessica could not speak—and it would have been a fantastic video moment if she would have thought about it in advance.
Anna stepped out into the hallway, and since she heard the commotion she knew she had missed it all.
“Any other time I can get on and off the phone, but oh not today. I swear I got asked the same question ten different times. Damn it, I’m so mad right about now!”
“G, that was so wrong!” Demi bellowed, irritated that Gessica got her.
“Yeah G, you could have given me a heart attack!” Bronwyn shouted.
Gessica settled down and calmly stated with sweet innocent eyes, “I’m sorry ladies.”
“No, you’re not, and for the record you’re STUPID, as stupid as one can get,” Demi blurted out.
“Takes one to know one, so thank you,” stated Gessica with a big grin smeared over her face.
Anna chuckled and said, “I’m going back into the office; yall can injure each other without a witness.”
Both having had enough laughs on their account, they walked back to the office as well, and left Gessica standing there with a smirked grin across her face.
“It’s okay, no hard feelings, still love you both, smooches!” Another glorious day in the office, she thought.