How to Clearly See…

In A Different Kind of Reunion, Private Investigator Jim Nelson doesn’t mince words when he learns about the psychic’s involvement in the murder investigation:

“Let’s face some facts here. Most psychics need to make a living. I don’t doubt this lady has some intuitive ability—as many women do—but I don’t think it’s enough to catch a murderer.”

Jim is in good company.

According to a recent survey by YouGov.com, 24% of respondents believe there are actually individuals who possess the ability to see the future. There is a gender split here as well; 28% of women think this power exists, while only 19% of men think the same.

Continue reading on the Sisterhood of Suspense blog.


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Life is Good

On Wednesdays, I share posts, fables, songs, poems, quotations, TEDx Talks, cartoons, and books that have inspired and motivated me on my writing journey. I hope these posts will give writers, artists, and other creatives a mid-week boost.

During my cancer journey, I noticed one of the patients at the Juravinski Cancer Centre wearing a T-shirt with a grinning stick figure and the message: Life is Good. I asked about the T-shirt and learned that it was part of an apparel line launched by two enterprising young men in Massachusetts. Many cancer warriors throughout Canada and the United States wear these T-shirts during their treatments.

Here’s the inspiring story of Life is Good…

The story of Life is Good begins not with the company’s founding but in the childhood of Bert and John Jacobs. The youngest of six children, the two brothers grew up in Needham, Massachusetts, a suburb of Boston. Life in the Jacobs household was, by many people’s standards, hard. The second floor of their small home had no heat. Their dad had a temper. And they couldn’t always afford basic necessities. Their mom, Joan, joked that she bought them food they didn’t like so that it would last longer.

Despite all of this, Joan was a resilient and cheerful woman who focused on the positive. Every night at the dinner table, she asked all six children to share one good thing that happened to them that day. As the kids talked about finding a Rolling Stones CD at the dump, hearing a funny joke, or learning something cool in school, the energy of the room transformed. Everyone started laughing and smiling. Joan’s optimism lifted them up. “I like running out of money,” she would tell them, “because then I don’t have to worry about what I need to buy.” From her, the boys learned that joy comes form our mindset, not just your circumstances.

In 1989, when they were in their twenties, Bert and John started a business designing printed T-shirts, which they sold on the streets of Boston. They also traveled up and down the East Coast, selling the shirts door-to-door on college campuses, each time making barely enough money to fund the next road trip. They slept in their van, ate peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and showered when they could.

On the road, they spent a lot of time talking. During one trip, they discussed the way the media inundates the culture with stories of murder, rape, war, and suffering day after day. Though bad things happen and it’s important to know about them, they agreed, the world is also full of good news. They thought of Joan and her ability to turn a light on in a dark room. They decided they wanted to promote her values in their work, to create a symbol that would serve as an antidote to the cynicism they saw in the culture–a superhero whose power was optimism.

John sketched a grinning stick figure on a T-shirt. He called the character Jake. When they got back to Boston, they threw a party and pinned the new T-shirt on a wall. Their friends loved it. One of them wrote on the wall next to the T-shirt, “This guy’s got life figured out,” with an arrow pointing to Jake.

Original Drawing of “Jake” from April 1994

The brothers distilled that phrase to three words: “Life is good.” Then, they printed the image of Jake and the phrase on forty-eight T-shirts. When they set up their stand on a sidewalk in Cambridge, they sold all of the shirts in less than an hour–a first for them. That was in 1994. At the time, they had $78 to their name. Today, they run a $100 million lifestyle brand.

As their business grew, they started receiving letters and emails from people who had faced and were facing difficult life circumstances, including cancer, the loss of a loved one, homelessness, and natural disasters. These people wrote about how moved they were by the Life is Good message, and how they had emerged from their adversity with a deeper appreciation of and gratitude for life.

In 2010, the company launched a non-profit arm called Life is Good Kids Foundation, devoted to children who are living with illnesses, violence, abuse, poverty, and other adversities.The primary program of the foundation is called Playmakers, an initiative that offers training and enrichment workshops to childcare providers like teacher, social workers, and hospital workers. Since its founding, the foundation has trained over 6,000 Playmakers who are working to improve the lives of over 120,000 kids each day. Each year, Life is Good donates 10 percent of its net profits to help kids in need.

Life is Good Website

Source: The Power of Meaning by Emily Esfahani Smith


The Power of Thinking

On Wednesdays, I share posts, fables, songs, poems, quotations, TEDx Talks, cartoons, and books that have inspired and motivated me on my writing journey. I hope these posts will give writers, artists, and other creatives a mid-week boost.

A fan of Jen Sincero’s books, I look forward to each new release. Here’s a short reflection from her latest, You Are A Badass Everyday.

True power comes from thinking what you want to think, regardless of how things appear or what other people say or how impossible your ideas may seem. Your thoughts are what lead the charge through all the obstacles, doubts, and dark nights of the soul that are standing between where you find yourself now and where you’re headed.

Think courageously, think largely, think audaciously, think magically.


A Simple Prayer

On Wednesdays, I share posts, fables, songs, poems, quotations, TEDx Talks, cartoons, and books that have inspired and motivated me on my writing journey. I hope these posts will give writers, artists, and other creatives a mid-week boost.

The following poem written by St. Teresa of Avila has been used a prayer throughout the centuries. Simple in its format, it appeals to anyone feeling afraid or anxious.



Spotlight on Revolutionize Your Health

I’m happy to welcome authors and healers Janet Nestor and Cornelia Merk. Today is the launch of their unique and illuminating book, Revolutionize Your Health.

About the Book

Be Inspired to Take Back Your Body’s Power to Heal

Are you feeling helpless about the health problems you face? Do you suffer from a chronic condition that gives you no peace or relief? Are you ready to trust your body’s innate power to heal?

Revolutionize Your Health is filled with inspiring stories of real people, who have healed themselves in incredible circumstances or experienced miraculous healings. The authors illustrate, backed by the newest scientific findings, that all healing is self-healing and explain how everyone can heal, even in the most desperate of times.

This unique and illuminating book gives you all the practical tools you will need for a real change in the way you approach your body’s health problems, showing you that healing is possible, no matter what the diagnosis.

Awareness is the Key to Healing

The Basic Principles of Healing teaches how the authors overcame their own individual health challenges and also provides fundamental scientific background and latest research in the emerging fields of epigenetics and neuroscience.

Holistic Awareness – The Secret to All Healing talks in depth about awareness of the body, mind, emotions, energy, and spirit. The section explores how thinking patterns and beliefs, self-treatment, hidden and unacknowledged feelings and emotions, environment, or disconnection from your spirit may be the at the root of a person’s current state of health.

Exercises That Help You Heal is a compendium of physical exercises and mental activities that are designed to further develop levels of awareness.

Packed with inspiring cases of miraculous healing and scientific research, this new book teaches you how to approach your body’s health issues mindfully, and inspires that healing is always possible.

buynow


On sale for $0.99 … January 22, 23, and 24!

About the Authors

Janet G. Nestor is an author, licensed counselor, and expert in energy healing and relaxation strategies, who is regularly interviewed about mindful living and inner peacefulness. Janet has released several books recently including Pathways to Wholeness and Yeshua: One Hundred Meaningful Messages for Messengers. She has also contributed to four books by other authors and participated in five collaborative books that have all become best sellers. In 2017 and 2018, Janet was recognized by Richtopia as one of the top 200 most influential authors in the world.

Janet maintains a private practice where her ability to communicate with Spirit underpins her holistic counseling, spiritual coaching, and soul art, which are drawings of the soul complete with a detailed reading for her clients.

She also connects mothers, fathers, children, and friends with their loved ones who have passed into spirit, providing an extremely validating and healing experience. She intuitively views a person’s energy field and creates bespoken drawings that automatically bring calm and balance. She is a master teacher for those wishing to take the journey into self-awareness and mindful living.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | LinkedIn | Pinterest | Amazon


Cornelia Merk is an intuitive healer, holistic wellness practitioner, and motivational speaker with an extensive background in the study of human potential and the body’s self-healing capacity. She is a certified Nia Brown Belt instructor and has explored the martial arts of aikido, tai chi, and taekwondo to expand her knowledge in body movement and energy flow. In addition, she is a third level reiki practitioner and worked as a personal trainer with Educogym, a fitness training that specifically uses the power of the mind in weight training and losing weight and includes education in nutrition and supplementation with the Irish Association of Holistic Medicine.

For the last 20 years, she has helped hundreds of people all over the world to reconnect to their body’s self-healing power and develop a lifestyle that supports increased health and well-being on all levels. Inspired by her own healing in 1998 after living with debilitating pain for eight years, Cornelia Merk has now co-authored Revolutionize Your Health, a book about how to take back the body’s power to heal.

Facebook | Linked In | Twitter

Happy Launch Day!


From Despair to Joy: A Writer’s Journey

I’m happy to welcome award-winning author Rebecca Heflin.Today, Rebecca shares her inspiring writing journey and latest release, A Season to Dance.

Here’s Rebecca!

As my official bio says, I’ve dreamed of writing romantic fiction since I was fifteen and my older sister sneaked a copy of Kathleen Woodiwiss’ Shanna to me and told me to read it. The thought of creating my own world and my own characters sparked my imagination in ways nothing else had.

Now, fast forward some (ahem) thirty years. At the age of 46, I had a mid-life crisis. Yes, they really do exist! I was having a tough time adjusting to some recent changes in my life, and found myself in a very unhappy place—one I hope never to return to.

While I’d always wanted to write (see above) I’d never had the courage to do it. A friend strongly encouraged me to give it a try, thinking it might help me out of my funk. She was right.

It took me about six months to finish the first draft of what would be The Promise of Change. I submitted it to contests and received feedback. Grimace. After licking my wounds, I took the constructive comments and rewrote it, adding some 30,000 words to the original version. Admittedly, the first draft had been dreadful. Name a rookie mistake, and I made it.

But, in 2011, I learned that the unpublished manuscript was a finalist in a writing competition, The Royal Palm Literary Award. Two weeks after that, I received ‘the call,’ or in my case, ‘the email’ that Soul Mate Publishing wanted the book. Funny aside—the morning I received the email there wasn’t a soul around with whom to share my news. I called my husband, my sister, my best friend, and my beta reader. Got voice mail for every single one. ::Shakes head::

When I’d started my first book, I’d set a goal—get published before my 50th birthday, which, at the time, was two years away. I succeeded in getting two books published by the age of 49, and I haven’t stopped since.

I’ve published five novels with Soul Mate Publishing and embarked on self-publishing in 2017, releasing a three-novella series, and my latest novel, A Season to Dance, the first book in the four-book Seasons of Northridge Series. I’m certain I would not have had the courage to self-publish without some experience under my belt. I’ve learned so much about so many things, besides the craft of writing. I’ve educated myself on the publishing industry, taught myself to format, and design graphics and websites, and tackled marketing. And I’m still learning.

While I never want to enter that unhappy place again, I am so thankful I experienced it. Without that dark time in my life, I never would have pushed myself out of my comfort zone and discovered the joy of writing. Writing filled a void I never realized was there, and for that, I am forever grateful.

Blurb

Olivia James and Zach Ryder were high school sweethearts, but at age eighteen, she left small-town Georgia for the bright lights and satin pointe shoes of Chicago’s Joffrey Ballet. Seventeen years later, Olivia’s come home for her mother’s funeral, nursing an injury that could likely end her meteoric dance career. Being back home stirs up old heartache, and seeing Zach again is not on her to-do list. Her best bet is get in, get out—a week at most. Then she’ll return to Chicago to rehabilitate her injury and salvage her career. But best laid plans often go astray . . .

Zach has never really recovered from Olivia’s departure, even though he always knew she was destined for fame, while he was destined for small-town life. Now Olivia’s back and he’s determined to protect his heart. But when he learns she’s staying in town longer than originally planned, Zach knows they are going to have to face the past to move on. He’s just not prepared for the beautiful woman she’s become or the effect she still has on his heart.

Small towns being what they are, Zach and Olivia are constantly thrown into one another’s paths, and it soon becomes apparent they still love each other. Will they give in to their rekindled desire and seize a second chance at happiness?

Excerpt

“Step out of the shower, with your hands up.”

Olivia James shrieked, even as her heart tried to escape through her throat.

Peering through the foggy blur of the shower doors, she saw two police officers, one who appeared to have a gun drawn and pointed directly at her.

What the . . . ?

She reached for the towel she’d slung over the shower door.

“Hands up!”

Her hands shot up. “I’m naked here! Mind if I turn off the water and cover myself? It’s not likely I have a loaded gun in the shower with me.”

Taking the silence as acquiescence, she shut off the water and slowly drew the towel from over the door where it hung before wrapping it around her body. She stepped out of the shower, her long dark hair dripping, and sucked in a breath when she looked into a pair of navy blue eyes lit with amusement—and something else. Shock, maybe.

Zach Ryder.

His amused gaze traveled the length of her, making her shiver and leaving her feeling as if the towel were invisible.

Not that he hadn’t seen it all before. Up close and personal.

Zach stood tall and confident in a dark navy police uniform, clearly enjoying the situation far more than warranted. Her mother had told her that Zach had come home to join the Northridge Police Department, eventually becoming police chief.

Unlike Zach, who stood with arms folded across his chest, his stance relaxed, the other officer held a gun, his body language anything but relaxed. Olivia swallowed, licked her lips, and reached for the robe hanging on the hook outside the shower, her movements slow and tentative.

“Don’t move,” Deputy Fife commanded, fierce concentration written all over his face. “What is your name?” he asked, gun still pointed at her.

Even Zach had apparently reached his limit. “Judas Priest, Cole, it’s Olivia. Olivia James. Carly’s daughter.”

Apparently unwilling to take his chief’s word for it, Cole continued, “Ma’am, I’m going to need to see some identification.”

At the use of his name, Olivia finally recognized Deputy Fife as Cole Lewis. “Oh, for heaven’s sake, Cole, you were three grades behind me in school.” She waited for him to recognize her and relent. When he didn’t, she heaved a disgusted sigh and tip-toed carefully across the bathroom floor, trying not to bust her ass on the wet tile. All she needed was another injury. “Could you just turn your back?”

“I’m sorry, ma’am, but we have a possible B&E in progress, so, no, I can’t.”

She could have sworn she heard a chuckle from Zach, covered by a cough. Then she groaned her frustration and cast a doleful glare at Zach. “Okay, fine, but I have to go to the closet to get my wallet.”

She headed for the closet and heard a hiss of indrawn breath, then another cough. She glared over her shoulder to give them a dirty look, and upon seeing the reflection of her bare ass in the mirror, realized she’d provided a peek at her derrière. Yelping in embarrassment, she yanked the towel closed.

Olivia returned with her driver’s license and handed it over to Cole. He examined her license then back at her, studiously avoiding anything below the neck. Finally convinced she was who she said she was, he handed her license back to her and holstered his gun. “Ma’am, did you know your security alarm went off?”

Alarm? Since when did her mother have an alarm system? “No. I didn’t even know there was an alarm.”

Cutting a glance at Zach, she couldn’t help thinking he still looked good. No. He looked better than good. The lean, athletic teenager had filled out in all the right places, making what should have been an unremarkable police uniform look downright sexy. He wore his light brown hair shorter than he did in high school, and it appeared more finger-combed than styled. But it was his eyes that drew her. A deep navy blue, the color of dark-wash denim.

“Why didn’t you answer the phone when the security company called?” Cole continued his interrogation.

Rolling her eyes, she indicated the wet hair and towel with a wave of her hand. “Because, as you can see, I was in the shower and didn’t get out to answer the phone.”

Cole went hands on hips. “Well, that’s why law enforcement was dispatched.”

Taking pity on her, Zach reached for her robe and handed it to her with a shit-eating grin.

“Thanks.” Their hands brushed, and the tingle she’d felt as a teenager had not faded in the seventeen years since she’d last touched him. Kissed him.

His gaze caught and held hers for a breath, and she thought she’d glimpsed . . . something in their deep blue depths. A flicker of lust, followed by regret?

Anger returning, she spun away from them and slipped on the robe, wrapping it tight before facing them again. “Well, as you can see, I’m not here to rob the place, so, if you don’t mind, I’d like to get back to my shower. I have a funeral to attend.”

Read the rest of Chapter 1 here.

Bio

Rebecca Heflin is an award-winning author who has dreamed of writing romantic fiction since she was fifteen and her older sister sneaked a copy of Kathleen Woodiwiss’ Shanna to her and told her to read it. Rebecca writes women’s fiction and contemporary romance. When not passionately pursuing her dream, Rebecca is busy with her day-job at a major state university.

Rebecca is a member of Romance Writers of America (RWA), Florida Romance Writers, RWA Contemporary Romance, and Florida Writers Association. She and her mountain-climbing husband live at sea level in sunny Florida.

Where to find Rebecca…

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | BookBub | Pinterest


Don’t Quit by Edgar A. Guest

On Wednesdays, I share posts, fables, songs, poems, quotations, TEDx Talks, cartoons, and books that have inspired and motivated me on my writing journey. I hope these posts will give writers, artists, and other creatives a mid-week boost.

I can recall feeling goosebumps rise as I listened to my Grade 8 teacher read this poem to the class. Its message still resonates, especially during cold, blustery days in mid January.