Simply RED – “Simplified” #Cover Makeover

Delsey and Lucile have the coolest challenge featuring makeovers for books, movie and CD covers. Are you interested and want to join in? Click here to find out all the rules!

This week was the CD cover from Simply Red’s CD, Simplicity. Below is the actual CD cover.

Below is my version:

Thanks for stopping in, I love seeing you all!

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Released today! THE FALLEN, by Melissa Barker Simpson

I want to give my friend, Melissa Barker Simpson (Mel) a pat on the back!

I am excited to announce:

Today, July 30th, 2015 her new book, “The Fallen,” is premiering on Amazon! This link will take you to her book launch site.

After the Demonic War, a battle which devastated the mortal realm, hunter cells were established across the globe to serve and protect every living soul. Maddison Wood is part of an alpha cell in the north of England. But Maddison has a new role now; her responsibilities as Watcher. She belongs to a legion of warriors assigned to serve the Fallen; guardian angels afforded the privilege of residing on Earth.

When Maddison is drawn to the city by an event which resonates hundreds of miles away, she is thrown into the path of a newly fallen angel. But Obadiah is no ordinary angel. He is a Prime, and his presence symbolizes a new threat. There is a war coming, and Maddison must form an alliance if she has any hope of winning this first battle. After all, the Fractured are a formidable enemy; a group of lost souls – powerful creatures of darkness who crave to destroy those who belong to the light.

But WAIT! There’s more!

As busy as Mel has been, she agreed to give us a wee sample of her writing with an EXCLUSIVE short story introducing you to Maddison, her protagonist!

The story begins…

Origins

It was cold. So cold, Maddison almost wished she could go back to her room. If an old, dusty attic could be called a room. It certainly wasn’t home. But then, her current location, crouched in a shop doorway, was hardly a step up in the world.

Her stomach growled; a loud protest which made her flinch. If she was caught, she would be returned to the hell from which she had escaped, and Maddison would rather starve than face the humiliation of returning to the junk pile. It was how her foster parents viewed her. The sadist twins kept her for their entertainment; her value equal to that of the rubbish littering their loft space. Not that she could blame them. She had been found in an open grave on the eve of her first day on earth. Not the greatest of introductions.

Better to keep moving.

Maddison ducked out of her hiding place, her eyes scanning the narrow street for any sign of life. She was alone. The thought did not reassure her. There was a darkness in the air, and it had nothing to do with the hour. A clawing sense of danger she felt like icy fingers brushing the back of her neck.

She decided it was her cue to leave, and scrambled up, hugging tight to the wall; her senses on alert. Maddison had always been able to feel things. For as long as she could remember she had relied on her senses; moving around in the dark with the ease of a night creature. It was a knowing she relied on, even before she was old enough to understand she wasn’t like other girls. Not that she was given the opportunity to mix with children her own age. It didn’t matter. She knew she was different because she could feel the power growing inside her. It was like a living, breathing extension of her. She could see it. Her mind afforded it a personality, showed her a green phantom – one which grew as she did.

She hadn’t meant to concentrate the energy into her hair. It had happened without conscious thought. Now her dark tresses grew at her command until she could use them as easily as one of her limbs. At first it was fun. She could transform her locks with merely a thought, and yet, sometimes, it moved on its own. Maddison felt the twitch, felt her hair flex and flicker like a cat’s tail. She wore it in a long braid, which hung down her back. It was thick and dark and gave her a sense of control she had never had.

Maddison paused at the end of the street, her gaze on the road sign a few yards away. She didn’t know this part of London well, but she was pretty sure Aronmyre would not show up on the map. The writing was all wrong, the letters seemed to glow in the dark. Maddison could almost believe it was a secret message, an invitation to a distant land. She had spent too many years alone, with only her imagination to guide her.

This way to the magical kingdom.

She smiled, amused by her thoughts, and stepped beneath the worn sign.

At first Maddison thought she was hallucinating. She had taken the game a little too far and dreamt up the beautiful woodland area, one her mind told her was real. She closed her eyes, prepared to let go of the illusion and continue on her way. Except that didn’t happen. Not when she blinked, rubbed or even willed her eyes to bring her back to reality.

Maddison took a rapid step back, her pulse jumping when the forest dropped away and she saw the connecting street once more.

Get a grip, Maddy.

She almost stepped around the sign, but she was tired of being afraid. So, instead she took a determined stride forward and walked right back into her delusion. Maddison repeated the process several times until she grew tired of the same picture. Either this was real, and the sign was some kind of crazy, messed up version of a portal, or she had finally lost her mind.

In the end she decided she didn’t care. Whether real or imaginary, the forest was an escape. If her desperate mind had conjured this place, she could summon a bed for the night and preferably some food. If real, then at least she was safe from the sadist twins, who were no doubt looking for her if only to secure their care allowance.

She didn’t move for several minutes. Her instincts were screaming at her, and she couldn’t decide if they were telling her to flee or to hide. The fact someone stepped up directly behind her, barely managing to stop before ploughing her down, told her she should have run when she had the chance.

“There now. Easy.”

The voice at her back was deep, yet gentle. It was the kind of voice meant to instill trust. Maddison had learned never to trust anybody.

She turned, keeping her back straight and her chin high, even though her heart was hammering and her legs felt weak. The man was tall and broad like a warrior, which probably made him a figment of her imagination too. His skin was dark and smooth, yet more evidence none of this was real. He looked picture perfect.

He was frowning at her, his dark brown eyes narrowed on her face. “You’re afraid.” It sounded like an accusation.

“No.”

A crease appeared on his forehead as though he was concentrating really hard on something. “I’m not going to hurt you.”

Maddison wondered if he could hear the rapid beat of her heart. It would explain why he seemed offended by the thought. “I’m not going to hurt yours either.”

The warrior laughed, his teeth glinting. Maddison jumped back, startled by the sight of fangs. Why would she conjure a monster?

“It’s okay,” he said, his laughter falling away. “I thought…never mind. Do you even know where you are?”

She considered lying, she even thought about running, and settled on the truth. “I have no idea.” Maddison shrugged, wondering if she’d fallen asleep in the doorway and this was all a dream.

“It’s not safe here for a child, you-”

“I’m not a child.”

The warrior frowned again. “How old are you?”

Her self-preservation kicked in, and this time Maddison did lie. She didn’t want him to contact the police. “I’m sixteen.”

“Let’s say that’s true. You’re still not safe. What are you even doing here alone?”

Maddison felt a flare of anger. She watched his gaze drift to her hair, which was twitching in response to her emotional state. “I don’t need anybody.”

She froze when the warrior pulled a large sword from behind his back, her stomach churning when he took a step forward.

“Get behind me.”

She turned her head on instinct, guided by the urgency in his tone and her intuition. The thing she saw creeping out of the shadows was horrifying. If she had thought this man was a monster, she didn’t have words for the creature stalking towards them.

Without further hesitation, Maddison stepped around the warrior. She held her breath when he charged forward, his sword swinging in the air. He took the monster down with one clean strike, and somehow managed to block most of the attack from view. Maddison felt light headed, but she didn’t pass out, nor did she betray her fear.

“We have to get you out of here.”

Maddison stared up at the warrior, her mind already searching for a way out of the nightmare. If she took a few steps backward she could return to a familiar place.

“My name is Tristan.” He bowed, and dark hair fell across his forehead. “You can trust me.”

She wasn’t sure why she believed him. Perhaps it was because, for the first time in thirteen years, someone valued her life.

Later she would discover that Tristan was a vampire, a member of the Enraptured, and protector of the human race. But on that night, he was simply a light in the dark – proof she wasn’t alone.

***

Meet my friend and Author – Melissa Barker Simpson

Melissa Barker-Simpson fills her days with language and words so she doesn’t get lost among the clouds. She is an interpreter by day, and a pen-wielding conjurer by night. Of course the only thing she conjures belong between the pages of a book, but it doesn’t make them any less compelling.

Her most important job, as far as she sees it, is being a mother to two impish teenagers. They keep her feet firmly on the ground, are a huge source of joy (despite the rampant emotions) and allow her to live out her fantasy of being a musketeer! She spends her time living between different communities, one of them being the (mostly) online writing community and give back the magic that has touched her life. Melissa runs a series of blogs, has a thing for collaboration, and enjoys to support others as often as possible.

Here’s how to find Melissa:

The Fallen book launch site has various places to purchase the book: https://booklaunch.io/mbarkersimpson/thefallen 

Author website: http://www.mbarkersimpson.co.uk

Blog: http://www.mbarkersimpson.wordpress.com

Twitter handle: @mbarkersimpson

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/melissabarkersimpson

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/mbarkersimpson

Amazon Author page: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Melissa-Barker-Simpson/e/B003E3PMTE

Thanks for stopping by to see the excitement in our part of the world! Stayed tuned for a book review soon!

 

Word to the Wise

Some interesting things to think about when getting ready to self publish your book…

The PBS Blog

how-to-self-publish-your-book-pop_8319

As we approach the month of August, when teachers return to work and students go back to school, I couldn’t help but to get excited that in just a few short weeks (mid August) I will be publishing another book. I’m really excited about this one and this excitement led me to a thought which in turn led me to something I think all Self-Publishers should take into consideration. I know that finances are a big deal to Self-Publishers and we are always looking for the most cost effective, yet professional, way to produce so here goes:

Never use POD (Print on Demand) services like LuLu and Createspace for anything other than Printing your books. Do not use POD editing services, POD promotional services, or POD book cover design services. Why? Because you can save a lot of money not doing so.

The most effective and creative action we…

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One Word Photo Challenge – HUMID

The humidity is rough in Florida!

If there is one thing you have in Pensacola, Florida – its humidity. Located on the Gulf of Mexico in northwestern Florida (near Alabama) this location has summers filled with HIGH humidity. We have not had much rain. Quick violent bursts of thunderstorms and then there is nothing. Fairy swamp is empty. My poor fairies are struggling for moisture. However, moisture comes in many forms…

This photo shows humidity in the form of the fog that curls and spirals in the field behind our house.

High humidity in Fairy Swamp leaves moisture dripping from the leaves. The heat is intense and you feel like you are wearing a second skin.

Is it humid where you live?

Thanks for stopping by today. I enjoyed our visit! See you again.

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How to Hashtag Blog Tweets.

Here is the scoop on #hashtags for Twitter from Hugh and Ronovan! ❤

Hugh's Views & News  

Howdy folks, it’s me, it’s me, Ronovanee. Okay, so it’s Ronovan, but Ronovan didn’t rhyme. Hugh is letting me hijack his blog for a moment. Just don’t tell him I did it, cause he doesn’t know I snuck in. Remember, everything that follows are my opinions and not Hugh’s, so if you disagree, it’s all on me. OOOooooOOo I rhymed that one for real, oh what a thrill. o,O (All images created by me. My apologies in advance.)

I want to start off by saying blogging isn’t a game of numbers for me. I know for some it is and you can tell who those people are. They are the sad people that belittle others who do things because they believe in them instead of doing them for gaining followers and views. In the words of the masochistic dog to the flea, “Bite me”.

What is Hashtagging?

Many people like…

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My Elf Killer Saga is Trending on ReadWave

My friend Hugh, from Hugh’s Views and News, shared his great news last week that his story, The Truth App, was trending on ReadWave.

This was a new platform for me, so I checked it out. I like the simplicity of the forum. It is easy to read and comment on other people’s writing. I joined and posted my Elf Killer Stories. Part II and Part III of the Elf Killer Saga is featured on the Trending page of ReadWave! My excitement overwhelms me! 😀 Thanks, Hugh for the great tip!

If you have the time, please check out ReadWave as another source for your writing.

Happy Monday!

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Mindful Monday – Mindful Nothingness – The Road to Meditation

Welcome to Mindful Monday! Each week I try to examine new or sometimes old things about myself. I have found that being mindful encompasses the act of being watchful, aware, wary, heedful, alert, careful, or attentive, in whatever area in my life I feel it applies to, as I attempt to live in the present.

If you are reading this I know you are a student of mindfulness too. It is a journey and a personal one at that. Each one of us has a different path to take to achieve our goals and needs. What works for some will not work for others. In my quest to become more mindful, I share links and resources to open your mind to the wonders of mindfulness. You never know, it might launch you on your own journey.

Do you ever think about nothing? I mean nothing at all. Have you ever been able to get to where there are no thoughts jumbling around in that great brain of yours. There is just nothingness. It’s hard to do. I know. I’ve tried.

I work hard at trying to lose my thoughts. Sometimes I imagine them as balloons floating on a gentle breeze. When the thought comes into my head, I pop it… and let it go. I watch it drift away. This helps me get rid of my thoughts.

I have found the following infographic helpful in clearing the mind and finding that special nothingness.


Today, I want to share a Ted Talk video from Andy Puddicombe: All it takes is Ten Mindful Minutes.

Image Credit: HealthyPlace.com

The Mind Unleashed will give you 5 Tips on how to meditate for beginners. There is no right way. It is only what works for you. Don’t be afraid to try. Just close your eyes…

This week I am going to continue working on clearing my mind for contemplation. I want to reach that state of nothingness where thoughts do not enter my mind in a random fashion. Music seems to help me clear my thoughts, but then I need it quiet. This works best if you can find a one minute chant to help you relax.

When I started my mindful journey in January 2015, it was with the intent to post my thoughts every Monday. This is the 31st Mindful Monday post that has been shared. This is our journey into mindfulness. The more we share and learn from each other, the better our journey becomes.

Would you like to share your mindfulness journey with others? If you are interested in sharing your goals or aspirations, I want to highlight your journey here on Silver Threading. Send me an email at silverthreading@gmail.com and I will be happy to feature you on a guest post.

Remember, this is not a challenge.  This is an offering of support.  If you would like to join in with your own Mindful Monday goals you can do so in the comments, or on a separate post of your own making.  If you want to link back to my post, please feel free to do so, however, it is not necessary.  My main aim here is to give and get support to become more mindful of the things I take for granted in my life.

 

Namaste. I wish you all peace and joy this week!

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Up Close and Personal – Deep Pink Crepe Myrtle

The Daily Post Photo Challenge asks us to get up close and personal! It is a good thing I snapped these shots the other day. Since Friday, thunderstorms ripped through our neighborhood leaving only a few of these glorious blossoms remaining. The tree was buzzing with bee activity while I was photographing.

I love the contrast between the dark pink color of the blossoms and the sky and clouds.

Bees are buzzing everywhere on the heavy blossoms.

The crepe myrtle from afar.

Thanks for stopping by northwest Florida to see what is blooming in all the heat. I will see you all again!

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The Elf Killer – Part III: The Witch of Timmoral Forest

Check out Melissa Barker Simpson’s blog to learn more about the challenge.

I chose Option 1: Sentence Starter –

The first time I died, I was nineteen years old and resigned to my fate; the second time was a different story.

I am continuing the story of the Elf Killer, using the prompts from Mel’s challenge. This is a free writing time for me and allows me to experiment with different genres and characters. I am letting my true pantser out once again! I hope you all enjoy.

Here is Part One of the Elf Killer

Here is Part Two of the Elf Killer

As the darkness arrived in Timmoral Forest, Nedra the Witch watched the shadows grow long and deep as they descended and grew from the tall stature of the trees surrounding the glen. Conjuring her deepest magic she had materialized outside the cave she called home on the edge of the forest in order to safely escape from Rawmall, the half-breed elf.

Nedra paced back and forth in front of the door to her cave thinking of what her next move should be. Damn, Rawmall! That half-breed elf makes my blood boil, she thought. She didn’t need to take any more chances around him. His power over her was purely physical. Nedra wanted him in the worst way. If she succumbed to his charms, she would lose everything, again. Death was much too high a price to pay for a sexual tryst with a half-breed elf at this point. Not yet, anyway.

The night birds cooed above in the leafy canopy of the trees. The sounds of small scurrying animals were heard rustling in the dense carpet of leaves beneath her feet. Stars appeared in the night sky. Nedra slipped silently inside her shadowy cave while the ebony whispers of her gown flowed behind her. The low burning fire beckoned to her while the coals brought a warmth to the coldness of her body.

Nedra stoked the fire with a wave of her hand. Suddenly, another huge flame burst from her palm and glowed with a lavender intensity. Concentrating her thoughts, Nedra watched the blaze of her lust slowly burn to the size of a candle flame. Slowly the flame turned into particles of dust filtering through her fingers.

Nedra stared at the grains of sand and remembered. The first time I died, I was nineteen years old and resigned to my fate; the second time was a different story.

Nedra belonged to a coven of witches that like the dark cats they idolized, had nine lives. It was a certain kind of immortality if handled with the utmost of care. That meant following the rules, something Nedra had always struggled with. If certain urges were controlled, the witches could live long lives while meddling in the existence of others for their own pleasure. It was a blissfully wicked existence.

Impatiently, Nedra tapped her blood-red nails on the chalice she drank deeply from while memories swirled around in the dark recesses of her mind. Losing her first life had been careless on her part. At nineteen, she was too young to know that she had to overpower her thoughts of lust and greed. The Warlock had taken her life force quickly. Nedra had simply vanished in a puff of black smoke.

The dark headed human had been her downfall the second time she lost her life. She had bewitched him into giving her all of his wealth and power. However, once again Nedra had been too young to know that she should never trust a human. He had ended her life by thrusting a sword into her heart as she had fled his grasp taking his riches with her.

Eventually, true to Nedra’s powers, the human found himself a pauper and banished from his mortal kingdom. Madness had propelled the man to cross over into Timmoral Forest where the elven colony had flourished since the beginning of time. Visions of Nedra caused the man to view the world through a mist of red blood. Hatred became his life force.

Once Nedra’s life balance of seven lives had been restored, she cast a spell to bring herself back to Timmoral Forest. This time, she was determined to track the dark-haired human and take his life to pay for the untimely death he had taken from her.

Nedra smiled, remembering how she watched the human butcher the blue haired elf. The human was truly insane. She knew this would be her last chance to possess his soul once more. His life energy would give her the knowledge of the humans. She would become stronger with each soul her darkness absorbed.

She followed the human to the elven community of Morr. It was there she cast a spell on the elves hiding them in the darkest part of the forest as she watched the human burn their small community to the ground. The dark-haired human had never seen her coming.

He got what he deserved, Nedra thought, relishing the memory of the dark-haired human boiling in the caldron at Morr. It had worked. The trap had been set. Rawmall had come seeking the elf killer. Soon Nedra would get what she truly desired, Rawmall the half-breed elf.

776 Words.

Thanks for stopping by,

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Introducing Lance Greenfield’s Coach Tours

Do you like to travel? I do too! How about some virtual tours where you can see the sights and meet new folks and learn about history along the way?

Meet Lance Greenfield and his delightful coach tours. Lance has taken us on a journey to the building of Stonehenge, to 1920’s New Orleans where we could enjoy the soulful sounds of jazz, to where we could watch the schooling of young Alexander the Great by Aristotle, and we were even able to spend time with the greatest inventor of all time, Archimedes, and yesterday we departed for the beginning of the nineteenth century in Vienna. We met Ludwig von Beethoven!”

If you get the itch to travel, head on over to Lance’s blog. You will find a delightful array of five erotic short stories published under the title When Pleasure Blooms through Amazon. In fact, Lance has written quite a few books. Here is the link to Lance’s author page on Amazon.

 

Author, Lance Greenfield

And, if you are looking for a bit of the ‘randy’ check out Lance’s Tidbits! You will surely have a great laugh or two. Make sure to stop by and see if Lance will tell you what a Scotsman wears under his kilt! 😉

In the meantime, Lance has a poll set up so that we can vote on where to go on his next tour. Check it out here.

Silver sends Lance good vibes

I’ll catch up with you at Lance’s blog! See you there.

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