Making New Year’s Resolutions—No, Really
Thanks to Amberkatze’s Book Blog for hosting me today! :)
There are a lot of varying opinions on making New Year’s resolutions. People seem to come down soundly on one side or the other. Either resolutions are a waste of time (or worse, harmful), or they are the best thing since…well, since last year’s resolutions.
I love goals. I love lists. I love to plan. Ergo, I love resolutions. And I view New Year’s as a time not to judge ourselves harshly for things we have (or haven’t) done in the prior year, but as a time to think positively about the future. So, here are some of my resolutions for the year.
1. Write more. Write better. ...Sure, these are kind of assumed goals for writers, but I like to include them anyway. ;)
2. Explore different genres. By this I mean, read more widely and write more widely. Whether it means anything I come up with will be worthy of publishing remains to be seen, but I think it’s important to flex our writing muscles.
3. Exercise more. An oldie but a goody.
4. Eat better. This is one I made great strides toward in 2013. Hoping to continue the trend into 2013.
5. Disconnect more. By this I mean get away from the constant checking of everything. Emails. Sales ranks. Facebook. Twitter. Etc. Etc. Etc.
Okay so nothing on my list is particularly ground breaking, but they are goals that I view as attainable and important. Do you have any resolutions for the new year?
Visions of death haunt her . . .
Ava Keller sees the future. When she suffers a horrifying vision of a man’s violent death, she knows from experience nothing she does will stop it from becoming a reality. But when she meets a strong, broken man, he makes her want to believe in second chances.
Vengeance consumes him . . .
Tortured by his past, Karson has worked tirelessly to wreak vengeance on the demons who murdered his family. But when Ava inadvertently disrupts his intricate plan for revenge, his focus shifts to an all-consuming need to keep her alive and in his arms.
Love could save their souls . . .
Thrown together by fate, Ava and Karson explore their new feelings and discover hope for the future. But they must battle the demons threatening humanity to find a destiny worthy of their love.
She writes about ass-kicking heroines and the strong heroes who love them. Her work includes the suspense-driven From the Files of the Otherworlder Enforcement Agency series which revolves around a group of paranormal cops solving crimes and finding love, and Don’t Bite the Bridesmaid, a lighthearted paranormal romance (Entangled Publishing).
Tiffany has an MBA in accounting and nearly a decade of experience in corporate finance. All super useful stuff for a writer who spends far too much time trying to figure out fun ways to keep her characters apart, and interesting ways to kill people (for her books—of course!).
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Spending a week on a cruise ship full of humans while sleeping close to his sexy next-door neighbor sounds like a helluva bad idea to vampire Noah Thorpe. But his friends need time to get him out of a shotgun wedding—a vampire bonding that will tie his fate to a female vampire he’s never met. And Alice’s offer comes at just the right time.
What could possibly go wrong?
Monstrous. That was the only word for it. Deep reds and yellows flashed at me, hurting my eyes. The sparkles were almost enough to put me right over the edge. What the heck were those things?
Rhinestones? Who wore rhinestones anymore?
“What do you think, Ava?” Miriam asked.
I bit my lip, searching my mind for a way to tell her that it was the fugliest thing I’d ever seen without off ending her. I cast a quick glance about us. Thanks to the after-dinner hour, the hospital cafeteria where we sat at a chipped Formica-topped table was almost empty. No one else seemed to notice us, or the horrible dress that my best friend was waving around. But combined with the smell of disinfectant that clung to the stark white walls and pastel plastic furniture, the dress was enough to make me dizzy.
Nope. There was no way to be polite.
“I think it’s horrible,” I admitted. Miriam’s fashion sense tended toward the wild side, but that dress crossed a line. Besides the garish sequins, the neckline looked like it would hit her navel.
“Really?” Miriam held the dress at arm’s length and studied it with a critical eye. “I thought it might be nice for the graduation party. I don’t graduate from medical school every day. Might be a good chance to wear something saucy.”
I suppressed a shudder at the idea of wearing something so flashy in public. But that was Miriam. Brave and fun and willing to journey into the scariest places fashion offered. Despite our differences, we’d been best friends ever since the day in middle school when Miriam decided we would be.
Miriam got what Miriam wanted.
She was also my favorite person in the world. So it worked out pretty darn well for me.
“Besides, once I start my residency, I won’t be out of scrubs for years,” she said. “There’s only so much you can do to make scrubs look good.”
The ache that had settled into my chest ever since the reality of Miriam leaving had hit me flared into pain. I was twenty-five for crying out loud, far too old to be using my best friend as a security blanket, even if she was leaving me alone in Chicago to pursue her dream of being a medical doctor in New York City. Mentally quashing the loneliness, I forced a grin.
My grin didn’t fool her and she frowned at me, then shoved the dress back into a Nordstrom bag. “You’re tougher than you think.”
“I know,” I said automatically. My fear of getting physically near people—heck, even being in the same room as large groups—was the source of many, many, many of our arguments. Especially lately. The last thing I wanted was to get into it again. Miriam was a gem, but she spent way too much time worrying about me.
Some things weren’t fixable.
I pushed down the self-pity the thought caused. The emotion was silly, self-indulgent, and unfounded. Sure, I wasn’t exactly sociable because of the constraints placed on me by my curse, but I still had a decent life. One that was a heck of a lot better than most people’s.
As long as I was careful not to touch anyone.
“So, I need to get as much Ava-time in as I can before I go. What are you doing tonight? You should come with me to find something to wear to the party, since you have to compete against this amazing dress.”
Compete against that? So not my style. The dress was a walking banner proclaiming Miriam to be vivacious and outgoing.
And more than a bit of a daredevil. If my clothes had a sign attached, it would identify me as “cautious,” or just scream “don’t touch.” There was no competition. And shopping? A sudden need to be out of this place, alone and in my own space, hit, and I tugged on my sleeves.
Miriam’s gaze shifted, just enough that I could tell she noticed. Awesome friend that she was, she pretended she hadn’t. “Actually, I’m a little beat,” she said. “Maybe I could bring a movie over? Something filled with angst and love and Colin Firth.”
“Are you ever getting out of the Colin Firth phase?”
She pushed up from the table, face serious. “Colin Firth isn’t a phase, Ava. He’s a way of life.”
“He’s a tad refined for my taste, but”— I stood and pushed my chair in—“I wouldn’t want to deprive you of something so important.”
Miriam turned to walk out of the cafeteria when she suddenly froze, her eyes widened, and her gaze locked on something over my shoulder. She let out a quiet whistle. “Wow, cute. Forget Colin Firth.”
As casually as I could, I snuck a glance behind me.
The man was anything but cute.
He could have been anywhere from his late twenties to midthirties. His good looks weren’t marred by the thick and ropey scar that ran down the side of his face and neck. I could see him playing Double Oh Seven, not Darcy. But the way he carried himself—arrogant but guarded—seemed out of place in the quiet hospital.
His gaze weighed and categorized everything it took in and made my stomach clench and my heart speed up.
Fight or flight?
I looked at Miriam. “Quit grinning at him,” I whispered. “He looks like a thug.”