Born To Be A Storyteller

Welcome to my Second Acts Series!

Today, we have Soul Mate author Rayanne Haines sharing her inspiring journey and her debut novel, Fire Born.

Here’s Rayanne!

Finding my way to this second act of my life has been less painful, and more painful than I ever thought it could be. I grew up quite sheltered on a small horse farm. Naïve but also desperately unhappy in my home life and wanting something more. At nineteen, I married my teenage sweetheart. At twenty-three I had my first son. At twenty-six my second. At twenty-seven I was divorced, with only a high school diploma, and living in support housing trying to raise two little boys.

I always dreamed of being a writer. I often felt I was born to be a storyteller. Frequently felt that my dream world was more real than reality. My children are everything to me. But I also knew the only way I would survive being a single parent was to fight for myself and my dreams. So, at twenty-eight I enrolled in college to take a Cultural Management degree. From there I worked for different Arts organizations—An activist film festival, a record label, a local choir. My children were with me every step of the way, often attending meetings and work functions when babysitters were unavailable or unaffordable.

Six years ago, I made the decision to focus on my own art. I became the executive director for The Edmonton Poetry Festival and began my journey into writing. Yes, later than planned, but completely and organically the way it was meant to happen. In 2013, I released my first collection of poetry. For the next several years I focused on submitted poems to magazines and anthologies, as well as honing my performance style as a spoken word poet.

In 2015, the idea for Fire Born, Book One of the Guardian Series, came to me in a dream. I began the work of writing a novel, with no previous training and no real understanding of what I was embarking on. I muddled my way through the first draft, and the second before asking for support from a few authors I knew and respected. Their advice? Go back to the drawing board and ask your characters who they are, instead of trying to guess. It took me a while to understand what they meant. But eventually I got it. I looked at my own life, where I’d come from, what I’d overcome. I had to know my characters as well as I knew myself if I wanted other readers to engage with them.

After a year of learning, and re-working, Fire Born was picked up by Soul Mate Publishing. Very quickly after, they signed me to a four-book deal! I’ve just completed book two of the series and am starting on book three.

I’ve also completed a Novel-in-Verse that will be released in the April of 2018. The poetic novel tells the story of an Italian family’s immigration from Italy to Canada, through three female voices, in poems.

I’m also marrying the love of my life three days after the release of Fire Born. My Italian lover has been very much an inspiration for all the heroes in my novels. My children will be walking me down the aisle.

My second act was hard fought and worth every bumpy step. I truly believe I would not be here if I’d never divorced. The struggle created a strength in me that helped push me to reach for my dreams, to search for great love, and to write about strong women who will accept nothing less.

Blurb

Independent, tough as nails, and fierce to her core, Alex Taleisin can’t quite believe it when she has to fight for her life against something not-quite-human in the YMCA parking lot.

hat’s when her Aunt lets her in on the family secret. They’re Immortal – Elementals to be precise and Alex is the long-lost daughter of one of the strongest female warriors of their time.

Her Guardian (a freaking Dragon!) and the sexiest man Alex has ever seen gives her a choice. Go with him, learn how to control fire, and find her father’s people or try to survive on her own. It’s an easy choice considering she’s only twenty-six and the Elders may already be on her trail thanks to the run in with the nut job in the parking lot kick-starting her dormant DNA.

Enter an insane grandfather, a shifter with a hidden agenda, and a witch with a shoe addiction. Suddenly Alex is wishing for a quiet house in the hills with the dragon she’s falling for. But a fight is coming and Alex knows the only way find her answers is to trust her powers and become the warrior she was destined to be.

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Where to find Rayanne Haines…

Website | Twitter | Facebook

Joanne here!

Rayanne, your remarkable journey is an inspiring one that will linger in my consciousness. Thanks so much for sharing and best of luck with Fire Born.


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International Day of Peace

Established in 1981 by a unanimous United Nations resolution, International Peace Day (Peace Day) provides a globally shared date for humanity to rise above all differences and contribute to a building a culture of peace.

I’m sharing one of my favorite poems from Maya Angelou, a Renaissance woman who has inspired us with her extraordinary voice and legendary wisdom.



Happy National Day of Encouragement!

The first proclamation for the Day of Encouragement was made by Mayor Belinda LaForce of Searcy, Arkansas on August 22, 2007. In September, Governor Mike Beebe of Arkansas signed a proclamation making September 12, 2007 the “State Day of Encouragement” for Arkansas. Later, President George W. Bush also signed a message making September 12 the official “National Day of Encouragement.”

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Here are ten of my favorite quotes about encouragement…

“When one door closes another door opens; but we so often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door, that we do not see the ones which open for us.” Alexander Graham Bell

“When you get into a tight place and everything goes against you, till it seems as though you could not hang on a minute longer, never give up then, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.” Harriet Beecher Stowe

“Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.” Thomas A. Edison

“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” C.S. Lewis

“Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.” William James

Be patient with yourself. Self-growth is tender; it’s holy ground. There’s no greater investment. Stephen Covey

“Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.” Maria Robinson

“Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.” Theodore Roosevelt

“If you dream it, you can do it. Always remember that this whole thing was started with a dream and a mouse.” Walt Disney

“Everything will be okay in the end.
If it’s not okay, then it’s not the end.”
Ed Sheeran


Adulting Writer Awards

I’m happy to welcome Soul Mate Author Elle Hill. Today, Elle shares some of her inspirational and motivational designs.

Here’s Elle!

About a week ago, I received some grump-inducing news. As is my recent habit, come afternoon, I plunked down before my desktop and slapped my fingers on the keyboard. Writing time! That day, though, I glared accusingly at my computer, which, just hours ago, had delivered some pretty obnoxious information.

But slowly, peck by peck, all the while sighing and muttering angrily, I penned a little over 1000 words. After limping across the finish line, I’ll admit I felt pretty smug. I hated the world that day, and still I managed to write something.

I deserved a medal, or at least a merit badge. An author merit badge.

You know those adulting awards that show up from time to time on social media? I propose we authors have our own adulting award but for, you know, literary stuff. Given this, I have designed some awards. Please feel free to print out, distribute, or tattoo as needed.

Where to find Elle Hill…

Website | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon


Honoring Louise Hay

Today, spiritual teacher Louise Hay died at age 90. One of the founders of the self-help movement, Louise has inspired millions of people with her positive philosophy and affirmations. The best-selling author of several books, among them, You Can Heal Your Life, she has helped facilitate–and often accelerate–the healing process.

Here are ten of my favorite quotes from Louise Hay:

Love is the great miracle cure. Loving ourselves works miracles in our lives.

Forgiveness is for yourself because it frees you. It lets you out of that prison you put yourself in.

Remember, in the vast infinity of life, all is perfect, whole, and complete… and so are you.

I choose to make the rest of my life the best of my life.

The point of power is always in the present moment.

I believe we create our own lives. And we create it by our thinking, feeling patterns in our belief system. I think we’re all born with this huge canvas in front of us and the paintbrushes and the paint, and we choose what to put on this canvas.

Learn from the past and let it go. Live in today.

Remember, you have been criticizing yourself for years and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens.

I have noticed that the Universe loves Gratitude. The more Grateful you are, the more goodies you get.

No matter where we live on the planet or how difficult our situation seems to be, we have the ability to overcome and transcend our circumstances.


Affirmations for Writers

During my cancer journey, I read Louise Hay’s book, You Can Heal Your Life, and developed an interest in affirmations.

What is an affirmation?

An affirmation states an outcome or truth you wish to impress upon your mind. While the affirmation doesn’t actually make things happen, it can raise your vibration so that you are more receptive to the desired outcome.

At first wary, I slowly warmed up to the topic and adopted several of Louise’s suggestions:

Every cell of my body radiates health.
I relax and let my body heal itself.
I lovingly do everything I can to assist my body in maintaining physical health.

Continue reading on Nights of Passion blog.