Monthly Archives: October 2013

I’m about to do something incredibly stupid….

So I went to the chiropractor yesterday and he and I got into this big discussion. It happens ever since he found out I’m a writer and he told me that he was an English major. He likes to tell me that he is very conservative money wise but that he’s a Libertarian at heart. This should have set off the warning bells right there.

What started out as a discussion about equal rights for everyone (which he is in full support of) ended up in a heated discussion about guns.

Now anyone who knows me is aware fully aware of my feelings on the subject, but because I consider myself to be an open-minded person, I tried very hard to see things from his point of view but I really couldn’t.

I know this is opening up a can of worms because feelings on this subject run deep on both sides and it is one of those topics that shouldn’t be brought up in polite conversation…like politics and religion…because its like treading a mine field.

But after a long night of trying to go figure out how to explain myself to him the next time I see him I realized something.

I don’t have to explain myself to him and it’s a useless effort anyway. Nothing I say to him will ever change his mind and nothing he says will change mine. I hate guns…with a passion. The only redeeming quality a gun has is that it can fire itself. It is an object created by man with no purpose but to end life. That’s all it can do. Whenever someone picks up a gun of any kind, their sole purpose is to hurt or kill something.

People who own guns and believe that it is their right have all sorts of arguments as to why it’s necessary and they will always feel this way. The NRA believes so deeply in their right to have a gun in their hands that to them, any innocent person killed by one is a sad remind as to why they need one.

I’ve heard arguments about that horrible day in Aurora, Colorado when a madman started shooting up a theater. “If someone else in there had a gun, maybe so many people wouldn’t have died.” Or maybe more would have because they would have ended up in the middle of a firefight, trapped between two (or more) people with guns.

“The only way to stop bad people with guns is good people with guns.” I heard that a lot too after Sandyhook and all those children who would never go home to their parents again. The people who said it were not the parents who said their final goodbye to their children that morning on their way to school.

“Guns don’t kill people, people kill people.” Absolutely true and therein lies the problem. Guns are inanimate objects that don’t have any feelings while people are made up of nothing but feelings. Human beings are never going to be perfect. They are flawed and make many mistakes. When someone is despondent and suicidal, having a gun around is a ticking time bomb. It’s an instant, permanent solution to what maybe very well be a temporary problem. But once they pull the trigger, there’s no going back or changing your mind.

Anyway, I could sit here and list my reasons for my feelings all day long and it still wouldn’t change anyone’s mind. And I’m sure gun advocates have a list of their own and it won’t change my mind either. In the end, for me, my right to not be shot by anyone trumps your right to have a gun every time and that is how I will always feel.

So, my final point of this little rant is this. There are things that I think I can help change…like my helping to fight for equal rights, and things that I know I can’t…like people’s views on gun control. I don’t have to justify my feelings to anyone. I can explain things to people and hope they can see where I’m coming from and maybe gain a little understanding, but in the end, they will believe what they want because it’s their choice.

As for my chiropractor, well, he’s a nice guy for the most part and I guess on this particular subject, we are going to have to agree to disagree.

I look forward to hearing any opinions you might want to share with me, but please, do it kindly?

Now, I do have a fic rec. Out of the Fire by Ariel Tachna was a story that broke my heart before putting it back together again. Evan and Rhys are the best of friends. When Evan gets a call for help from Rhys, there’s really no question. He will help if he can. Evan is a Dom, one of the best and Rhys asks him to help rehabilitate a broken sub. Evan goes to do his best and along the way, as he watches his friend and the sub fall in love, he figures things out about himself. Self-truths aren’t always easy to come by, but sometimes they’re just what you need.

You can find this amazing story here: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=1650 and here: http://www.amazon.com/Out-of-the-Fire-ebook/dp/B003TLMIKW/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1383140649&sr=1-1&keywords=out+of+the+fire+Ariel+Tachna

And as always, I’m here: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=ntt_athr_dp_sr_1?_encoding=UTF8&field-author=Cindy%20Sutherland&search-alias=digital-text&sort=relevancerank and here: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/index.php?cPath=55_454

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Filed under Hump Day

I am a bad, bad blogger….

I haven’t posted since my birthday and I keep meaning to but then I starting thinking about what I want to talk about and I get stuck. Anyone who knows me knows that I am never at a loss for words…until I have to write something witty and charming and generally not look like an idiot. Not my best subject.

My writing is coming slowly and I’m a little disappointed about how hard it’s being. I thought that once I got the acceptance from Dreamspinner my nerves would go away and I would write like the wind.

Yah, not so much. I have a very specific place I want this story to go and you’d think that would make it easier but it really doesn’t. This is the first thing I’ve written for publishing that isn’t fandom related in some way and I think therein lies the problem. When you write something fannish, you have a definite idea of your characters in your head and how they should act and what they should look like. They have a world that they live in and all I have to do is write them in that world.

This one doesn’t have that set of rules. I have to make it up as I go along and that’s a lot harder. You would think that not having rules would make it easier, but it doesn’t.

Plus the fact that this store is a shifter story makes it more difficult. The genre does come with rules that have to be addressed and I’m worried about not getting that part right.

That being said, however, I can’t imagine it as anything else. The picture I saw that gave me the inspiration just won’t let me go and to me it says wolf-shifter.

I am aware that there are several people who are waiting for me to finish this and are more than willing to kick my ass to do it. My brother, my mother and my Aunt have all been cajoling me to get this finished and I have to say, that make’s me so happy.

I am still working on my getting healthy thing, although that would be a whole lot easier without this cold I’ve developed. I’m hoping it won’t last long because it’s very difficult to walk very far when you’re coughing up a lung.

And I’m hoping that my Dr’s appointment on Tuesday can shed some light on why I’m so freakin tired all the time. I suspect I’m low on iron (again) and my blood sugar could be a little elevated. Also, maybe my body is just getting tired of carrying around all this extra weight and the diet and exercise are the only things that can help with that.

Deanna and Ty are some newer friends of mine who have been so instrumental in helping me stay motivated and I thank them so much for not giving up. My family are all cautiously optimistic that I’m going to be able to keep this up and my husband has gotten on board and been helpful too. My daughter is not really thrilled about the whole healthy eating thing, but hey, it’s for her own good so she can suck it up.

Friday night I attended my niece’s 18th birthday party and when I stand back and look at her I’m so damned proud and amazed by her. She’s grown into the beautiful, kindhearted, smart, funny woman and I know that she is going to go far in life. I’m so glad I get to watch that happen. I think it’s kind of funny that she celebrated in the same dive bar I first drank and so did her mom. It’s like passing on a legacy, lol.

Over on FB my dearest friend Mike just celebrated his 62nd birthday. Now I wouldn’t normally announce his age but he had serious heart surgery a few years back and until he got it, we weren’t sure he was going to make it to his next birthday. I can only hope that I get to celebrate a lot more with him now. If you ask him, he has two birthdays…the day of his birth in October and the day of his re-birth in July. I love to celebrate both days.

Oh, and congrats to New Jersey for becoming the 14 state in the union to recognize same-sex marriage. One day this will be an issue that isn’t one anymore. Until then, I will celebrate every new stride that’s taken in the right direction.

Of course, to get me through this terrible drought with my writing, I have been reading. And of course, I have to share. I know some folks wonder why I recommend books that aren’t mine. I’ve been told that all I’m doing is creating more competition for myself.

The truth is, I love to read. I’ve mentioned that before. It takes me away to places I’ve never been and will probably never get to. And when I read a story that makes me smile, or cry, or get angry or all three, I have to share it with someone. I want every writer who’s trying hard to get the recognition they deserve.

Also, I’m hoping for (but not counting on) good karma. I keep hoping that if I’m kind to others they will be kind to me. After all, isn’t the Golden Rule really how we should live our lives? I try to treat people the way I want to be treated. I’m not always successful, but it doesn’t stop me from trying.

On that note, I have a fic rec for you. My Only Sunshine by Rowan McAllister is a heartwarming story set on a ranch. Tanner is lost and broken and needs help desperately. He’s willing to work hard to get it. Mason is a man who gave up the life he made in the city to come home and help out at home…the home his father kicked him out of when he found out his son was gay.

Coming back to take care of the man who despises you tends to drain the life out of your heart but then Mason finds Tanner. Tanner is sweet, caring and everything Mason ever dreamed of but he’d not sure how to mesh the two lives he’s living together.

This story had me hoping and cheering for these two men who needed each other so desperately and I will be looking for more from this author.

Find it here: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=4239

And here: http://www.amazon.com/My-Only-Sunshine-Rowan-McAllister-ebook/dp/B00FMJYE6A/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1382411159&sr=1-1&keywords=my+only+sunshine

And as always, you can find my stuff here: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=ntt_athr_dp_sr_1?_encoding=UTF8&field-author=Cindy%20Sutherland&search-alias=digital-text&sort=relevancerank

And here: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/index.php?cPath=55_454

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Filed under Monday Rants, Things I'm Thankful For, Writing and thinking.

Hey, its my birthday!!!

Today I turn 44 and I’m not sure how the hell that happened. I don’t feel 44 most of the time. I don’t think I look 44 (most of the time) and I’m still waiting to feel like a grownup and I’m starting to have a sneaking suspicion that may never happen. Honestly? I hope not.

There are still so many things I’ve never done that I am still figuring out how to do. Like travel. The place I want to go are varied and all of them reflect a part of my personality. Ireland…I think I lived there in another life. I’ve only seen it in pictures and on TV but it looks like home to me. Italy…especially the Tuscany region. I want to sit on a beach and drink Lemoncello and watch all the beautiful Italians go by. New Orleans, the Netherlands, England, Memphis and Maryland and South Carolina and Atlanta…all places I want to go that contain people I want to meet. And of course California and Seattle, where I’ve made some new and supportive friends.

And New York! Broadway, Time’s Square and Central Park. And FAO Schwarz, the worlds biggest toy store. Skating and the Christmas tree at Rockefeller Centre. I could spend months exploring NY and never get bored.

I still want to be a best-selling author. I want to write a story that gets everyone’s attention and I want to do it with two men as the main characters.

I want to learn to cook things I’ve only ever heard about and I’d like to learn to sew. I’d like to get my driver’s license (maybe) and buy and old car and cruise around in the summer with the windows down and tunes cranking out of the radio. My daughter says we need a ’67 Impala like Sam and Dean Winchester. If you don’t know who they are, I feel sorry for you, lol. Google them and find out.

My daughter asked me some questions for school today. She wanted to know some “life lessons” I’ve learned. I struggled for a few minutes but then came up with this.

First of all, family, whether you’re born into it or find it along the way is the thing that makes life worth living. I’m including friends in there as well because they are as much a part of your family as the people who are related by blood.

Second of all, never just assume it’s too late to learn something new. Take the chance when it comes because as the saying goes, you can’t win if you don’t play. Take advantage of every opportunity you can because it may never come along again in your lifetime.

And thirdly (and hardest of all to do) don’t let fear control your life. Being afraid is normal but it shouldn’t stop you from trying. Whether it’s fear of what people might think (I’ve almost completely let that one go in the last few years) or fear of failure, it won’t do anything but stop you from achieving the things you want most in life. A friend of mine has a bracelet that says “the only thing standing in my way is me” and I think that’s true for most of us. I’m doing my best to work through that one too. I might need more practice, but I’m gonna keep trying.

So this is some of the stuff I’ve learned in my 44 years. It might not mean anything to anyone but me, but in this case, I’m the most important person.

Also coming up for me is Thanksgiving. Us crazy Canadians. We’re rebellious that way and celebrate in October just to be different. I can’t wait to be sitting around the picnic table down at the campground, surrounded by family and my sister and I will be waiting for my dad to look around the table and see all the food and love ones and get a little misty eyed. Then he will say “I wonder what the poor people are doing” and we’ll all pretend we don’t have tears in our eyes, but my sister or I might sob just a little. It’s as much a part of our family tradition as the turkey itself. For my dad, having everyone there makes him a rich man. He’s a smart guy. We should all be a little more like him.

I’m still working on my exercise and healthy eating. I haven’t had a Coke Zero in almost three weeks and let me tell you, for a Coke addict like me, that’s a miracle. Hubby might be getting tired of salads and stir-fries for lunch but until I can figure out some new recipes, this is the best way for me to get all the veggies in I need. Well, that and the awesome fat-free smoothies I’ve been making for myself.

The walking is getting easier and I’m pretty sure that means that it’s almost time to kick things up a notch. I’ll have to go looking for more hills to climb to make the workouts harder. I am also going to be looking for a second-hand treadmill so I can continue to walk when the snow makes things…difficult. I’m sure my ever-supportive workout friends will think of some other things I can do to get some exercise, even as they keep poking and prodding me along.

And of course, we have the fic rec. I’m gonna do two today because it’s my birthday and that’s just what I feel like doing.

The first one is The Stand by Stephen King. It is still one of my all-time favorite novels and I love reading it when I get a chance. It’s your basic good versus evil story with an apocalypse thrown in for good measure. Mother Abigail is the leader of the good guys and she will make you smile even when she’s making you crazy. And then there’s Randall Flagg, the dark man. He’s an incarnation of evil that has walked his way through numerous King novels and he’s unabashedly heartless. It was also turned into my favorite mini-series of all time and if you haven’t seen it, do yourself a favor and see if it’s on Netflix. It’s an adventure worth taking. Find the novel at your local library or here on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/The-Stand-Stephen-King/dp/0307947300/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1381211670&sr=8-1&keywords=the+stand+stephen+king

And I’m also going to rec Puzzle Me This by Eli Easton. It’s a sweet love story about two men who fall for each other and then have to figure out how to make it work. It made me smile and left me wanting to know more about their lives. Find it here at Dreamspinner: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=4232

Or here at Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Puzzle-Me-This-ebook/dp/B00FKNQF92/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1381212153&sr=8-1&keywords=Puzzle+me+this

And as always, find me here at Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=ntt_athr_dp_sr_1?_encoding=UTF8&field-author=Cindy%20Sutherland&search-alias=digital-text&sort=relevancerank

Or here at Dreamspinner: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/index.php?cPath=55_454

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Filed under Things I'm Thankful For

Trying to be a healthier writer is killing me…and a fic rec.

So, I’ve decided that it’s time to get off my ass and do something about the weight I’ve gained back in the last year. I was doing so well and had lost almost 100 lbs but then along came real life and money issues so I quit the gym and Weight Watchers on-line to save money, convinced I could keep it up on my own.

Uh huh…not so much.

It all went to hell in a handbasket and I gained about half back. Now I’m determine to do much better. With the encouragement from my family and from a few friends on Facebook and Twitter, I’ve started a better choices routine that involves eating healthier things and going for long walks. Really long walks. I’m up to almost 4 miles now and I’m trying to go every second day. I’m feeling better than I have for a while and I’m trying to focus more on getting healthy and less on weight loss. I figure that the first one will eventually lead to the second.

The added bonus is that my daughter wants to join me on these walks and seeing as how I would prefer that she didn’t join her father and I in the severely over-weight category, I’m glad to have her along. Diabetes runs in both of our families so it’s I decided it would be better to not tempt fate.

Besides, if I drop dead over my computer, you would never get to read my new masterpiece, right?

It’s a good thing I like walking though. What I’m going to do once the snow flies, I don’t know, but I figure slogging through ass-deep snow (it’s not hard to come by, I’m really short) has got to be a good, hard workout, right? Good thing I’m a tough Canadian girl who knows how to weather the winters we get around here.

Any ideas for healthy recipes or indoor exercises I can do without a ton of equipment would be greatly appreciated BTW.

So, speaking of writing…my WIP didn’t work out from the other POV and so I just have to accept that the characters want different things than I do so, I will let them chose the way for now. Damned pushy characters…how dare they take on a life of their own!

I’m still waiting to hear back from Dreamspinner about the Valentine story I wrote. If they don’t take it, I will publish it here on my blog in two or three parts.

Let me tell you, balancing the exercise and the writing is not an easy job. When I get back from exercising the last thing my brain wants to do is think. In fact, it mostly is trying to convince me that I want to die. Dramatic? Yes, but it’s how I feel, lol.

Oh, I almost forgot. Went to Edmonton Expo this past weekend. It was amazing but I was completely overwhelmed. My daughter and I got autographs from John Barrowman who was absolutely hilarious. Then she got her picture taken with Karl Urban and he was so sweet to her.

Then came my turn. I not only go my pic taken with JB but I got to hug him as well. I have no words to describe how kind he was and let me tell you, his energy level would put the Energizer Bunny to shame.

Now for a fic rec.

The Strongest Shape by Tessa Cardenas is a wonderful story about a young man who finds out that the love of his life is in fact two men. When Caleb breaks up with his boyfriend, he finds a new friend who takes him under his wing and introduces him to his other friends. Caleb isn’t sure what to think when he find himself attracted to a couple who seem to have an amazing relationship. When he finds out that they want him as well, he finds himself on a journey to discover his self-worth so that he can finally accept that these two men really do love him and want him to be an equal partner. The men are all adorable and oddly familiar for some reason and I think people who don’t normally like threesome stories will enjoy the sweetness and heat the author delivers.

Find it here at Dreamspinners:
http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=1635&cPath=55_195
And here at Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/The-Strongest-Shape-ebook/dp/B003TO5GEE/ref=sr_1_2?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1380830931&sr=1-2&keywords=the+strongest+shape

And as always, you can check me out here! http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=ntt_athr_dp_sr_1?_encoding=UTF8&field-author=Cindy%20Sutherland&search-alias=digital-text&sort=relevancerank

And here: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/index.php?cPath=55_454

4 Comments

Filed under Writing and thinking.