Haiku Friday – Miracle & Save

26 May

Miracle and Save are this week’s prompt words chosen by Ronovan Hester of Ronovan Writes.

Ron hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called Ronovan Writes Weekly Haiku Poetry Prompt Challenge every Monday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your haiku poem. He is an author and poet and also does author interviews and much more on his blog. Be sure to check it out. Read Ron’s Haiku Prompt Challenge Guidelines for more information.

“Typically creative people are usually not clock-slaves or list-makers, so the idea of enforcing goals and deadlines can be somewhat daunting.”

~Kristin Armstrong

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Need a miracle

Deadlines marching ever nigh

Save me from myself

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**I’m currently in the formatting stage of my upcoming book, The Fall of Lilith. I can say without a shadow of a doubt that this is one of the most difficult and overwhelming parts of the process. At least if it’s your first time doing it. Phew! However, everything continues to move along toward the deadline that I set for myself (Summer).

Happy Friday and great weekend all!

Spotlight: Hugh W. Roberts

22 May

Welcome to my blog, everyone! It is a happy Monday indeed because I have a wonderful guest today, Author Hugh W. Roberts.

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Hugh is one of the sweetest and friendliest people you’ll ever meet and he is also a talented writer. He writes about all kinds of everyday life. Nothing too serious, mostly about the little things in life and how important they can be to all of us. Some of his posts are humorous while others may bring a tear to your eye.

Hugh spends his days writing, reading, walking, cycling and likes to relax in front of the television with a glass of red wine. He’s always been a morning person and does most of his writing during the day.

Hugh’s first book ‘Glimpses‘ is a collection of 28 short stories that allows the reader a peek into the lives of everyday people who are about to have life lead them on an unpredicted path. From a mysterious deadly iPad app, to a hole in the fence that is not all it seems, to a strange lipstick that appears to have a life of its own, you will encounter terror, laughter, sadness, shock and many other emotions on journeys which promise a thrilling and gripping climax. If you are a lover of shows such as ‘The Twilight Zone’ and ‘Tales Of The Unexpected’, then you’re in for a real treat with this first collection of short stories.

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In his words . . . 

My name is Hugh, and I live in both the town of Abergavenny and the city of Swansea, South Wales, in the United Kingdom.

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I have always enjoyed writing and the fact I suffer from a mild form of dyslexia has not stopped me. Yes, I get things wrong with my reading and writing but I now always find those mistakes humorous and always laugh about it. I no longer allow dyslexia get in my way. Now in my fifties, I thought it about time I let my writing become public. Becoming a blogger seemed to be the perfect way for me to do this. I lead a very happy life and always try to stay positive. I share my life with my wonderful Civil Partner, John, and our Cardigan Welsh Corgi, Toby, who I both cherish with all my heart.

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I write about life because I find it so fascinating. I have many stories to tell, some of which I have started to put into a book. I think my life has been incredible and I want to share it with anyone that wants to listen. I am also a wonderful listener and I love to be interactive with other people. I guess you could say I am a ‘people person.’

Hugh’s book Glimpses has gotten many wonderful reviews and it’s available on Amazon as a beautiful paperback or eBook.

Check out Hugh’s blog at: Hugh’s Views & News – A man with dyslexia writing about this and that and everything else!

You can also connect with Hugh on social media:

Twitter

Instagram

Google+

YouTube

 

Thank you for stopping by and have a wonderful week!

 

Haiku Friday – Excite & Karma

18 May

Hello everyone! Happy National Endangered Species Day!

If you know me or have been following ‘The Writer Next Door’ blog for a while, then you know that I love animals. I’m sure most people are fond of animals and have had one or more pets at some point in their lives. But whether or not you have a pet makes no difference really. A life is a life and should be respected. At least that’s my opinion and everyone’s entitled to one.

Each year on the third Friday in May, National Endangered Species Day is an opportunity for everyone to learn about the importance of protecting endangered species, their habitats and the actions necessary to do so.

Every year you can participate along with thousands of others at events to celebrate National Endangered Species Day at wildlife refuges, zoos, parks, community centers, aquariums, botanical gardens, libraries and schools.

Why don’t you check to see what National Endangered Species Day events/activities are scheduled in your area this weekend?

Animals currently on the endangered species list:

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African Elephant (Loxodonta africana) mother and calf, Sambru National Reserve, Kenya

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An Arctic fox, Vulpes lagopus, at the Great Bend Brit Spaugh Zoo in Great Bend, Kansas.

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Dolphins – I’ve seen many dolphins here in Florida and they are just as playful and sweet as you’ve seen them on TV.

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Giant Panda | San Diego Zoo

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Indochinese Tiger

There are many more animals on the endangered list. I can’t show them all. 😦 Wouldn’t it be sad if your children or grandchildren grew up without ever seeing these beautiful animals? It breaks my heart to think that many of these animals may be extinct by the time my nieces and nephews have children.

 

An amazing field

Full not of wild animals

but earth stained in blood

The price of karma is high

For silent roars and dust-wings

Where did love and compassion go?

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Bald EagleI had the privilege of seeing a couple of Bald Eagles in Alaska. They are awe-inspiring birds.

 

Excite and Karma are this week’s prompt words chosen by Ronovan Hester of Ronovan Writes.

Ron hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called Ronovan Writes Weekly Haiku Poetry Prompt Challenge every Monday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your haiku poem. He is an author and poet and also does author interviews and much more on his blog. Be sure to check it out. Read Ron’s Haiku Prompt Challenge Guidelines for more information.

Spotlight: Michael C. Hayes (My Book Cover Artist)

15 May

Spotlight: Michael C. Hayes (My Book Cover Artist)


It is my privilege to introduce today a creative and just plain gifted artist, Michael C. Hayes.

His amazing artistry will inspire you. I have always said, art and writing go hand in hand just like poetry and music. I am honored to have one of Michael C. Hayes’ works grace the cover of my upcoming novel, The Fall of Lilith. I will do a cover reveal later on but for now I want to showcase this artist and his magnificent works of art.

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In Michael’s words . . .

If you had told me I would end up painting for a living when I was 17, I would have assumed you meant houses or cars. The idea of creating a representational image out of pigments suspended in linseed oil was so far removed from what I thought I was meant to do in life.

Most other artists I know tell stories of ceaselessly drawing as children and never stopping. Drawing was something I was dragged into against my will. Once I stopped grumbling about it and tried to make the best of the situation, I discovered an unrealized passion. It is funny how a seemingly insignificant high school elective can change your life for the better.

At that point in my life I was set on making the big bucks in the glamorous field of software engineering, so when I learned in order to graduate I had to take an art elective instead of a programming course, I was not happy. I chose animation as the elective; over the  course of that semester, I found that I enjoyed drawing. I was also introduced to a few 3d animation programs, for which I developed an affinity. I eventually decided that animation would be a lot more fun than writing code.

In the 5 years that followed, I studied at a local community college and later at Cogswell Polytechnical College, earning a degree with honors in Digital Arts and Animation. Throughout the years it became evermore apparent that 3D animation was not quite what I wanted to devote my career to. I was slowly spending more and more time and effort on my traditional drawing, painting, and sculpting courses and less time building wire frames on the computer. By the time I was ready to graduate my goals had once again changed. All the years of required art courses and a few influential and supportive professors had made their mark: I was undeniably hooked.

I moved back to San Diego after graduating in 2005 and enrolled at Watts Atelier of the Arts. Free from the constraints of term papers and physics tests, and in a wonderful artistic environment, I began spending almost every waking moment I could spare on a drawing bench or in front of an easel.  I often tell people the crammed 20 years worth of study into my short time at the atelier.  As a result of this effort, and a few extraordinary teachers, my artistic skills began to develop to professional level.

About halfway through 2008 I got my first professional gig working freelance on a game called “Legends of Norrath”.  In the years that followed I began to receive more and more work and took fewer and fewer classes, slowly transitioning from student to full time professional.  Since then I have had the good fortune to work for clients such as: Wizards of the Coast, Blizzard Entertainment, Sony Online Entertainment, LucasArts Entertainment, Night Shade Books, Palladium Books and others.  In the past few years I have received several ARC awards, a Chesley award and a nomination for a Spectrum award.

In late 2013 I decided to make some changes and pull away from the freelance world for awhile. Although I will still take those projects that are too good to pass up I plan to spend a few years focusing on my personal work.

There is so much more art to see. Check out more of Michael’s work and connect with him at the sites bellow:

DeviantArt

Facebook

Instagram

Twitter

You can sign up for Michael’s newsletter here.

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Haiku Friday+ – Fairy Whisperer

12 May

Hello everyone and welcome to The Writer Next Door!

I’m excited because I have a very special guest today, Colleen Chesebro the Fairy Whisperer herself! It has been a great honor and pleasure knowing this sweet lady for the last couple of years. Colleen is a talented author and poet and a great supporter of her fellow writers, poets and bloggers. She is a veteran of the U. S. Air Force and a retired bookkeeper. She holds an Associate Degree in Business Administration, and another Associate Degree in the Arts, which she uses to blend her love of writing with her passion for all things creative. Her first book, The Swamp Fairy is the first installment of her series The Heart Stone Chronicles.

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You can get a free preview of The Heart Stone Chronicles: The Swamp Fairy here.

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Available on Amazon

In Colleen’s words . . . 

My name is Colleen Chesebro. My blog is the place you can come to hear the stories of the fairies as they whisper their tales to me. I’m glad to meet you. I enjoy writing about the seven different nymph clans. I am a writer of cross-genre fiction, poetry, and imaginative nonfiction.

My first YA novel, The Heart Stone Chronicles: The Swamp Fairy, reveals the story of Abby Forrester, a 14-year-old orphaned girl who is entrusted with saving a community of fairy nymphs from certain ecological destruction. Along the way, Abby learns about friendship, love, and what it means to actually belong to a family.

When I am not writing or reading, I enjoy spending time with my husband, dogs, children, grandchildren, and friends. When time allows, I also enjoy gardening, cooking, and crocheting antique doilies into works of art.  I live in the United States with my husband, Ron and my two Pomeranians, Sugar and Spice.

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You can learn more about Colleen Chesebro here.

Take some time to visit Colleen’s blog, Colleen Chesebro ~ Fairy Whisperer

Also connect with this wonderful lady here:

Twitter

Google+

Facebook

 

Fairies

On Earth we dwell

Although fleeting in plain sight

A Dream too bright to last

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Fast and Plain are this week’s prompt words chosen by Ronovan Hester of Ronovan Writes.

Ron hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called Ronovan Writes Weekly Haiku Poetry Prompt Challenge every Monday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your haiku poem. He is an author and poet and also does author interviews and much more on his blog. Be sure to check it out. Read Ron’s Haiku Prompt Challenge Guidelines for more information.

Haiku Friday – Leap & Throb

5 May

Happy Friday everyone! Thank you for stopping by. I appreciate it.

 

Leap and Throb are this week’s prompt words chosen by Ronovan Hester of Ronovan Writes.

Ron hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called Ronovan Writes Weekly Haiku Poetry Prompt Challenge every Monday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your haiku poem. He is an author and poet and also does author interviews and much more on his blog. Be sure to check it out. Read Ron’s Haiku Prompt Challenge Guidelines for more information.

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Peregrine Falcon

Stooping from heaven

A cast of falcons I see

Mice leap, hearts throbbing 

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The Peregrine Falcon Dive exceeds 200 mph

Have a great weekend everyone!

Haiku Friday – Behold & Eye

28 Apr

Today is the last Friday in April and it is also National SuperHero Day. So to all the superheroes out there, you know who you are, have a great one!

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This is a digital illustration I did of my family as ‘SuperHeroes’. I made posters and handed them out as Christmas presents. This was about 10 years ago, so much has changed since I did this, so it’s bittersweet for me to look at it now, but I thought it was worth sharing.

 

Behold and Eye are this week’s prompt words chosen by Ronovan Hester of Ronovan Writes.

Ron hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called Ronovan Writes Weekly Haiku Poetry Prompt Challenge every Monday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your haiku poem. He is an author and poet and also does author interviews and much more on his blog. Be sure to check it out. Read Ron’s Haiku Prompt Challenge Guidelines for more information.

When I was a child

I lifted my eyes and saw

The good in all things

I think sometimes we have to stop and see the world through the eyes of a child. It refreshes the soul.♥

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Iron Man, one of my favorite superheroes. It turns out Robert Downey Jr. is a real-life superhero too.

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‘If we had to have celebrities, it seemed to me that Clooney was absolutely the best kind.’

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Chris Pratt and Chris Evans are real-life superheroes. Look at the smile on that little girl’s face.

 

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No these are not celebrities or models. These people are real south Florida fire fighters and real-life superheroes. ‘A shirtless set of twins and a salt-and-pepper hunk flanking a striking female model clad in firemen’s bunker pants and a sports bra, Jessica Alba abs exposed. No, it’s not a photobomb, and the young lady is actually not a model. That’s Jasmine (28), a firefighter with the Hialeah Fire Department, joined by her brothers Christian (Miami Beach Fire Rescue) and Ivan Jr. and their father Ivan Sr. (both City of Miami Fire Rescue).’

Haiku Friday – Beautiful & Curse

21 Apr

Happy National Tea Day, National Chocolate-Covered Cashews Day, and National Big Word Day!

 

This goes to show that there’s always something to celebrate. 😉 Since we’re celebrating these wonderful events (?) I will contribute a little something to each one. First, for National Tea Day I’m going to recommend you try my morning ritual tea:

  • Green Tea
  • 1 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 2 packets Stevia

This combo tastes delicious and it revs you and your metabolism in the morning and helps you off to a great start.

For National Chocolate Covered Cashews day I’m going to let you in on something . . . cashews are not nuts. They are actually fruits. 😮 Mind blown!

Now for National Big Word Day I’m going to give you one of my favorite, and I think one of the most beautiful words in the English language, wait for it.

Mellifluous:

Okay it’s not that big (that’s why I made the letters bigger––shhh) It is a beautiful word though and it means: A sound that is sweet and smooth, pleasing to hear.

So go on and celebrate the day by having a nice cup of tea, handful of chocolate covered cashews, and tell someone their voice is mellifluous. They’ll love you, once you tell them what it means.

 

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Illustration by Selene Regener

Beauty has a soul

Beyond the perfect features

Lies curse of intellect

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Illustration by Selene Regener | Selenada DeviantART

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Illustration by Selene Regener

Beautiful and Curse are this week’s prompt words chosen by Ronovan Hester of Ronovan Writes.

Ron hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called Ronovan Writes Weekly Haiku Poetry Prompt Challenge every Monday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your haiku poem. He is an author and poet and also does author interviews and much more on his blog. Be sure to check it out. Read Ron’s Haiku Prompt Challenge Guidelines for more information.

Enjoy your day!

Haiku Friday – Wonder & Spy

14 Apr

Wonder and Spy are this week’s prompt words chosen by Ronovan Hester of Ronovan Writes.

Ron hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called Ronovan Writes Weekly Haiku Poetry Prompt Challenge every Monday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your haiku poem. He is an author and poet and also does author interviews and much more on his blog. Be sure to check it out. Read Ron’s Haiku Prompt Challenge Guidelines for more information.

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Illustration by Alex (IllustrateSir) DeviantART

When fallen angels

drop to earth, their wings torn off

How do they evolve?

Childlike wonder turn to fright

When revealed they’re doomed to night


UPDATE: Right now I’m doing the finishing touches to my book, The Fall of Lilith. I’m working on the blurb for the back of the book, dedication page and a few other things. I have the illustration for the book cover, which is something I’m very excited about. I’m planning a post featuring the illustrator’s work, along with a book cover reveal. My goal is to release the book before summer.

A Happy Good Friday to everyone!

Haiku Friday – Chagrin & Joy

7 Apr

Welcome to The Writer Next Door and Happy Haiku Friday!

 

Chagrin and Joy are this week’s prompt words chosen by Ronovan Hester of Ronovan Writes.

Ron hosts a challenge that anyone could participate in called Ronovan Writes Weekly Haiku Poetry Prompt Challenge every Monday, and you have until Sunday to create a post featuring your haiku poem. He is an author and poet and also does author interviews and much more on his blog. Be sure to check it out. Read Ron’s Haiku Prompt Challenge Guidelines for more information.

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It boils within you

Anger takes and never gives

It’s a thief of joy

Do not let it steal pieces

Of who you desire to be

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Enjoy the weekend!