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Friday, March 25, 2016

LUNATIC PRESENT by Lida Sideris



FEARLESS FRIDAY
You're going to love this post, readers. Welcome to the blog, Lida.
Sometimes I feel like I’m onboard a pirate ship in the middle of a vast, restless ocean, surrounded by strangers of questionable character. I’m stuck…unless I want to dive over the side into dark, bottomless waters hiding hungry creatures with long, sharp teeth and a passion for blood. I’m talking about my day job as the director of a legal non-profit.
Most of my days are harmless; all are action-packed. I work with over 600 lawyers and judges. I run different programs that sometimes bring out the complicated, the unpredictable, and once in a while, the unstable in the community
I’m rarely alone in my suite. Other attorneys populate the building, leaving me with numerous capable hands and minds to help when needed. Except for this one day.
My assistant was out, and so it seemed was everyone else in my section of the building. It was late morning, a lovely day in Southern California. Life was good. I sat in my office, reviewing paperwork, when the door to my suite opened. I stepped out to the desk usually occupied by staff. A gentleman in his sixties stood before me, wearing a suit and tie, carrying a file in one hand. I took him for a lawyer or possibly a prospective client. Life was still good.
I asked if he needed help. He replied, “I’m here just for the day, from Pebble Beach.”
Pebble Beach is a posh community just southwest of San Francisco. He captured my attention with that tidbit. He appeared legitimate.
“I need to file for arbitration.”
“I’d be happy to help.”
He moved closer and dropped his file on the desk. He emptied his pockets. Keys, pens, and a bottle of medication tumbled out. The rest of his words were a blur. He mumbled something about his criminal case, his unjust imprisonment, how his attorney was in cahoots with the DA and how they wouldn’t get away with it. I started to feel nervous.
“I need to move my car.” He raced out the door. Without his keys. And up the stairs to the second floor…where there was no parking lot.
I moved toward the door, but he was back before I could exit.
“Why aren’t you helping me?” His next words spilled out in one stream. “Are you in cahoots with them too?”
For a moment, I saw myself as a headline in the morning news. Mild mannered non–profit director found… and I got angry. “You need to leave.”
“I’m not going anywhere. You don’t know who you’re dealing with. I’m the godson of JFK. I dated Hillary during the Whitewater scandal, I…”
Okay, so at least one screw was loose. I wanted him out. In my novel, my heroine works for a boss who lays down the law, Marshall Law that is, (his name is Marshall), about unseating difficult people. Marshall suggests having a lunatic present when involved in a potentially sticky situation or, if no lunatic is handy, to act like one yourself. I squared my shoulders, stood tall, pointed to the door, and in my best Darth Vader voice, I boomed. “Out!” I could have chased a Grizzly Bear in high heels at that moment.
The guy grabbed his belongings and turned to say something, but I maintained my stance. He left.
I never thought I’d take advice from a fictional character in my own novel. Little did I know.
Blurb: Watch out Southern California! There's a new entertainment attorney in town and she's got game. Only problem is, it’s not the one she should be playing. Corrie Locke belongs behind a desk, not behind a Glock. She should be taking VIP calls, not nosing around a questionable suicide. Instead, she's hot on the trail of a murderer.
Luckily, she's the daughter of a late, great private eye and she's inherited his love of sleuthing…and illegal weaponry. It doesn't help matters that her gene for caution is a recessive one. Corrie finds herself in the center of a murder case, unearthing suspects in shocking places. With a cold-blooded killer on the loose, Corrie will have to up her game, or die trying.
Biography: Like her heroine, Corrie Locke, Lida Sideris worked as an entertainment attorney for a film studio. Unlike her heroine, she did not get blackmailed into investigating the suspicious death of a co-worker. Lida resides in the northern tip of Southern California with her family, their rescue shepherds, and a flock of uppity chickens. She was one of two national recipients of the Helen McCloy/Mystery Writers of America scholarship for mystery writing. 
Links:
              WEBSITE:   http://www.lidasideris.com/
              BLOG:     http://www.lidasideris.com/blog/
              FACEBOOK:  https://www.facebook.com/lidasideris
              TWITTER: @lidasideris

Purchase Links
          AMAZON
          NOOK
          iTUNES 

A Book Excerpt:
I veered out of the parking lot and bounced onto the cavity-ridden dirt road. The mystery car appeared out of nowhere from beneath the tall pines, eclipsed by the darkness. Now it raced away somewhere ahead.
“Why didn’t we hear it start?” I asked James.
“It’s a hybrid.”
“We’re in a car chase with a Prius?” A car chase with a Porsche or Ferrari was respectable, but with a battery operated car? All bragging rights vanished.
I shifted into warp speed and surged downhill. Seconds later, we faced the hybrid’s rear bumper. The spot for the license plate sat empty.
“He’s not getting away,” I said.
The hybrid turned and launched up a hill, kicking up pebbles and a dusty haze. It fish-tailed and I nearly nipped it in the rear. I executed a sharp left and ran over something large. And lumpy.
“Stop,” James said.
I skidded to a halt, a cloud of dirt trapped in my headlights. The Prius escaped through an open gate and onto La Paz. My eyes cut to the rearview mirror. My tail-lights illuminated the road behind us in an eerie red glow. As I surveyed the scene, not a trace of saliva remained in my mouth.
 

Thursday, March 24, 2016

#LivingCheap and Living Fun



TRIPPIN' THURSDAY

In everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose...in our latest season, with only a vague plan and a touch of creativity, we're off on another adventure. Half of this twosome is retired; my half will probably never know what that means. I promise to share.
Yard art at the RV Park

I like to give pointers on living cheap…living cheap and having fun. Recycling has taken on a broader meaning in recent years. Stores specializing in used items are springing up everywhere. They’re getting really classy, too. Have you been to Goodwill lately? Sure not the same stores I rummaged through as a teen. There’s a St. Vincent in Payson
More in the rose garden
that is really upscale. There are three lovely wood cabins around a little courtyard. One cabin is two stories and filled with house wares, including furniture. They have it laid out beautifully. I think if I were to set up house from scratch, I’d hit the used stores first.

There are a few ladies in the RV Park that have gotten into glass art. Big Time. They’ve collected so much used glass, they could open their own glass shop. They make frequent trips to yard sales and stores like Goodwill. They make beautiful yard art—everything from angels to birdbaths to pieces of decoration.

My birdfeeder
I don’t have time for a hobby since writing takes up my days, but I decided to try my hand at making a glass work of art. I wanted to make a bird feeder. I had a couple of pieces of glass, and a trip into town with Patty and Vickie got me the rest. For a couple of bucks, I now have a gorgeous birdfeeder.

So today’s tip…think used before new and save a bundle.

Trippin’ to California was this last week’s trip. My son’s in-laws rented a beach house and we were invited to spend a few days. What
Running on the beach with Sadi
a great time lazing on the beach, walking to the pier, and breaking bread with a crazy bunch of people.

Money tip on this trip: buy as little gasoline in California as possible.
Making sand angels

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

OH SO WICKED by Rebel Miller



WICKED WEDNESDAY
Please welcome my guest, Rebel Miller, to Wicked Wednesday. And please read all the way and enter her drawing! Don't you just love a chance to win?!
How about a wicked adversary?!
In Awakening and Promising, the first two books in my futuristic New Adult romance trilogy, Gabriel Minister and Maxim Noble play terribly sinister roles, but neither of them is who I would choose as my wicked adversary. Aside from the protagonist, Kira Metallurgist, the character who I absolutely adored writing into being is Layla Sovereign, leader of the Realm.
Why?
Throughout the trilogy, readers get the sense that there’s something hidden behind Layla’s words, that something is off, just not right. She is as enigmatic and calculating as she is delicate and soft-spoken. Layla, or the Corona as her elite position is called, manipulates Kira, other people and situations like chess pieces, driving her own agenda forward. Frustratingly, we just don’t know what her agenda is! At least not yet!
The truth is, as a ruler over numerous worlds, the Corona bears the heavy weight of many secrets, so it’s no wonder she keeps her cards close to her chest. But does that burden justify her playing with people’s lives?
Layla Sovereign is my wicked adversary because she’s complicated and unpredictable … and aren’t the best evil doers those who we’d least expect?

Promising: Book Two of Kira’s Story
PROMISING, the riveting follow-up to AWAKENING by Rebel Miller.
Faced with diverging loyalties — between those she loves and her responsibility to the Realm — Kira has to make heartrending and strategic decisions that threaten to jeopardize her future.
As her connection to Tai deepens and turmoil in the Realm builds, so does Gannon’s frustration at being unable to call Kira his own.
Worlds at War ... A Heart in Conflict
While the Realm stands defiant amidst rising unrest, Kira is thrust into a role that puts her at the forefront of her system’s governance and law, supporting a landmark position. Following a devastating turn of events, she turns to Tai for a shoulder to lean on after making a painful choice to ensure Gannon fulfils the role he was meant for.
As she becomes a reluctant - yet inspiring - voice for her caste, Kira learns about one of the Realm’s most well-kept secrets and how far leadership will go to prevent it from being revealed. What she doesn’t know is how much the decisions of her past have the power to bring enemies into her path, threatening to destroy everyone she holds close to her heart.
This novel is for mature audiences (18+) and includes committed relationships with multiple partners.
Available Now
Giveaway
Enter to win an eBook version of Promising: Book Two of Kira’s Story, a Rebel Miller Books tote and magnet, and a signed poster.
Tweets
Worlds at War…A Heart in Conflict. Kira’s Story continues. #romance #newadult #TheRealmSeries http://bit.ly/rebelmiller
The Hunger Games meets the Crossfire Series in Promising. #romance #newadult #TheRealmSeries http://bit.ly/rebelmiller

Excerpt
“How is it that with all our system’s technology I can’t make love to you from thousands of light years away?”
I snorted, but my lips tilted up at the corners nevertheless. “I’m sure the Protectorate has some sort of virtual reality device that could be refashioned just for that purpose,” I offered, rearranging the wool blanket on my lap.
I was curled up in bed, facing my monitor and resting against a pile of pillows. It had become a familiar position over the last few weeks, one from which I would relay the day’s activities during my nightly call with Gannon. Well, it was a nightly call for me. The sun had already risen where Gannon lived, on Dignitas One.
Suddenly, Gannon seemed to be deep in concentration. “No, on second thought, there’s no technology that could ever measure up to the real thing.” He grinned.
I smiled, heat rising to my cheeks.
“There’s the smile I was looking for,” Gannon said, leaning closer to his monitor, and so closer to me.
He was sitting in his office. He had been holding our calls from there more frequently over the last month. From what I could see, his office was a large, well-lit space. A wall of floor-to-ceiling glass ran its expanse directly behind him. Through it, I could see citizens of every caste striding by in obvious haste to get things done, more than likely at Gannon’s bidding. During these nighttime conversations with Gannon, and within the intimate surroundings of my bedroom, it was easy to forget who he was and his status. As chancellor, he surely had, every day, a checklist as long as my arm, filled with tasks.
I frowned as I noted the time. “I should let you go,” I said, sitting up.
“Why?”
I glanced pointedly behind him, fiddling with the thin strap of my top. “Your office looks incredibly busy.”
He blinked then swiveled in his chair to look at the steady stream of people behind him.
“Oh, my support always look like that,” he said, mischief glittering in his clear blue eyes as he turned back to me. “They think it’ll prevent me asking them to do anything else.” He winked, and I laughed, loving his cheekiness.
About Rebel Miller
Rebel Miller is an author who overindulges in Pinot Grigio, caramel popcorn and an eclectic mix of movies, music and angst-filled romance novels.
Rebel earned a graduate degree in Communications and Culture from Ryerson University and an undergraduate degree from the University of the West Indies.
Rebel lives in the outskirts of Toronto, Canada with her husband and two sons.
Connect with Rebel