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Tag: Everything Else
10
Dec
2014

Writing Updates and Upcoming Releases

Yup. You read that right. Releases. As in more than one! It’s been a while since I did an update on my writing and what I’m working on. Been so busy working on it I forgot to get everyone excited about it! Now I have three projects to update you on and two are releases. Can you feel my excitement from where you’re sitting? Because it’s pretty exciting from where I am! So you know you should probably at least scroll all the way to the bottom of the post and enter the contest. Who doesn’t love free books?

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17
Aug
2014

Friday August 15, 2014; The Day The Game Changed

Posted in: Book Updates

Friday started out like every other Friday for the past year. I took my daughter to school, ran some errands, tried to get enough things done before the weekend so I could spend the most amount of time with my family, and managed to hurt myself doing something extremely klutzy (falling UP the stairs if you can’t survive not knowing how).

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08
Jul
2014

BDSM Blog Hop | Because BDSM Isn’t Violent Or Abusive

Posted in: Blog Hop

A few months back I saw a post scroll by in my Facebook feed that I had to go back and make sure I read correctly. Apparently there was a group that was pushing their beliefs that anyone that lived some variation of a BDSM lifestyle was in a violent and abusive relationship. Grace R. Duncan posted a link to the survey they had created that was so clearly biased it was laughable. Well, it would have been if it weren’t such a horrible viewpoint to have. Of course I went to the survey and let them know, in the nicest way I could, where they could shove their assumptions that someone that enjoys having pain with their pleasure is being abused. Or any other variation of the BDSM and Kink community there is. That’s one of the best parts of that community. That there is truly nothing WRONG with the way you play. Sure, I may not get pleasure from someone else’s ideas of kinky. But as long as they are playing by three main tenants of Safe, Sane, and Consensual, then no one will tell them it’s wrong.

I don’t normally talk about my personal life and never my past. But because it’s relevant, I will just this once. The reason that I got more steamed about the situation is because I’ve been in a violent and abusive relationship before and BDSM had absolutely nothing to do with it. All of the scars from that relationship are sadly internal ones. The worst part of all is that he never laid a finger on me. Does that make the relationship any less abusive or violent? Some say yes, some say no. For me, it’s that much harder to bear because I wasn’t the stereotypical abused girlfriend saying she got a black eye by falling into a closed door.

Back to how BDSM plays into all of this. I stayed with him for as long as I did because of the way certain things (birds, bees, sex and love) were explained to me when I was a teenager. There was nothing wrong with how it was explained. Nothing wrong with how I felt at the time. But once I was with him it became that much harder for me to get out because of that. Also because I was still learning about my own sexuality at the time and didn’t fully understand sex and everything that went along with it.

I came to learn later in life that I am submissive. I dare anyone to tell me that I’m weak and see how fast you fall on ass, bless your little heart. At the time of getting out of the relationship though I wasn’t ready to accept all of that about myself. The word was used in a passing conversation I had with someone I knew at the time and I immediately shut them down because I wasn’t weak and I sure as hell wasn’t going to let someone hit me, especially after the way I had just been treated when NOT physically hurt.

Of course in the deepest part of my mind back then some of those words and ideas stuck with me since I had learned some of what DIDN’T work in sex during that horrible first foray into it. However I didn’t learn until much later in life what submission and domination, plus the other aspects of BDSM and kink were all about. Boy did that change my life for the better.

Once I understood what it was all about, did some actual research into the topic and met people that were already in the lifestyle, it’s like a light bulb went off inside. That piece that was missing was there all along, I just had to figure it out on my own.

So, if you are in an abusive relationship, please find a way out and find the help you need. If you are in a BDSM relationship, then I am glad that you have found what you are looking for. If you are what I lovingly refer to as “vanilla”, again I am glad you have found what you are looking for. But just because you don’t understand it, doesn’t make it abusive, or violent.

I’d like to thank Grace R. Duncan for setting up this amazing blog hop. Also Vicktor Alexander for sort of pushing her into doing it (in the most loving way possible of course). Be sure to check out the other posts on the tour. You can see all of the links for the rest of the hop at the hop landing page here. There are tons participating in this amazing hop so read more and learn about some of the different aspects of BDSM.

 

14
May
2014

Pricing Yourself Out of the Market

Posted in: General

I recently friended an author I enjoy on Facebook. While checking out her page to see if there is news of new books in the future, I saw someone asking her to lower the price on her book since this fan found the price too high. To help everyone understand the argument, the book was priced at $4.99 on Amazon. It’s 55K words, or roughly 150 pages. In my personal opinion that isn’t too high. But the comment brought about an interesting debate.  How high is too high for ebooks?

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23
Jan
2014

In Memory of Mommers

Posted in: Book Updates, General

I’ve been quiet for the past few months, and the reason for that is because my mom had been having some health issues. She went into the hospital around Halloween this past year. She had some good days, and some bad days. Unfortunately she wasn’t able to get better. She fought hard but ultimately she couldn’t beat the problems that she faced. So now we all have to go forward without her amazing presence, and her unwavering support.
My mom supported me in everything I have ever tried and did. When I told her about wanting to write, she asked me “What’s stopping you? You’ve always been a good writer. Let others read your words.”

I am posting an (unedited) excerpt from Brian’s Story in honor of my mom and the support she gave me in everything I wanted to do in my life. It’s going to be hard for me to not have that support anymore. But I know she wouldn’t have wanted me to give up.

I will not throw up. I will not throw up. If I kept repeating it to myself enough times, I may eventually believe it. Elliott, the traitor, had abandoned me at his mom’s request. I know it’s customary to get grilled from The Parents, which means his dad will likely be next. The problem was I was scared out of my mind. After the problems I had with my parents, I tried to stay away from all the parents that I knew. I didn’t want to prove to everyone that my parents were right, that I didn’t measure up.
“Breathe Brian. I promise that I won’t bite your head off. From everything Elliott tells me you are a wonderful man. Unless you hurt him, you and I will have no problems.”
I looked at Mrs. Watkins- no she told me to call her Laurie- trying to hide my fear from her. I didn’t want to appear weak. I knew I had to respond but it was hard.
“I have no intentions of hurting him. He is important to me. I’m falling for him.” I told her honestly how I felt. I didn’t want her thinking that I was some playboy athlete or something crazy like that. I just wasn’t worthy of someone as amazing as Elliott.
She nodded as she watched me with her keen eyes. I tried hard not fidget under her stare, but it was hard. I figured offering to help in the kitchen somehow would be the right thing to do.
“Can I help you make, whatever it is you’re making? I’m not good with baking but I can take directions well.”
After another moment of being watched, she nodded once and then went back measuring something.
“Peel those browned bananas and put them in the mixing bowl.”
I dutifully started to peel the bananas and put them in the bowl. I had never messed with the super ripe bananas before and boy were they messy! I could feel Laurie’s eyes on me as I worked. As soon as I finished she gave me the next instructions.
“Now start the mixer. Only put it on the lowest setting until it starts to get creamy. Then up the mixer to the second level.”
As the mixture got creamy she would add different things, having me stop in between each one to prevent a mess. Her silence unnerved me however. I expected her to ask questions to make sure I was the right guy for Elliott. I started to get more and more tense as her silence dragged on. I knew I should say something, but I had no idea what. The problem was the more tense I became, the more I started to mess up. A little splatter here. Mixer too high there. The last straw for me was when I put in too much sugar. A whole extra cup too much. I still had no idea what we were making but I was sure double the amount of sugar wasn’t a good thing. I hung my head because all I wanted was to impress her. I was sure messing up her, whatever it was we were making, wasn’t the way to do that.
“The Disney super nanny may have said that a spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down. But I say an extra cup of sugar makes the banana bread twice as big. Do you know why?”
That solved one question at least. We were making banana bread. Elliott’s favorite treat.
With my head still bowed I answered. “Because it makes the bread rise twice as much?”
Her startled laugh had me bringing my head up to look at her.
“You were serious when you said you couldn’t bake, weren’t you?”
I’m sure my confusion was obvious because she laughed harder but managed to pull me into a tight hug at the same time. Which was a feat itself because of how skinny she was.
“Sugar doesn’t make bread rise. Though if it did, all of my bread would be extra sweet.” She pulled out of the hug and then held me at arms length and looked into my eyes. “No, extra sugar makes the banana bread twice as big because we make twice as much batter. All we have to do is put in more of everything else and the batter is fine. That’s the thing about baking. Even when you mess up, there’s usually a way to fix it and make it better.”
She waited a beat while staring at me meaningfully. “Sort of like love. When you mess up, there’s always a way to fix it. There’s no need to throw it away.”
I nodded as I absorbed her words. “I have no intention of throwing Elliott away. I know it’ll be hard with both of careers. We’ll also both mess up from time to time. That’s how relationships work. But if we try to make each other feel as important as we are to each other, then it will be worth it in the end. I want that with Elliott.”
She was nodding at me the whole time as I spoke and a broad grin formed on her face by my last word.
“Exactly. And Elliott is lucky to have someone as wonderful as you to show those things in return. I am glad he has found someone worthy of him.”
My eyes opened wide at her last words. Of course she figured out my insecurities; she’s a mom!
“I know you think you’re not worthy for some reason. Elliott wouldn’t say since it wasn’t his story to tell. Frankly, I don’t really need to know the why behind it. However, I do know that you are an amazing man. I haven’t seen Elliott this happy since he was a kid. Now, relax, we’re going to finish making a double batch of banana bread.”
With that, she went back to measuring more ingredients. When she leaned in to pour the last ones into the mixer she gave me a sideways hug and said softly, “Welcome to the family Brian. I couldn’t be happier to call you son.”

20
Jul
2013

Tunnel Vision

Posted in: General

Do you ever get it into your head this one thing is how it’s going to be and nothing will change your course? You get tunnel vision and can’t be bothered to see around you and realize that one particular spot you’re rushing towards isn’t the end all be all of your existence.

I recently realized I had tunnel vision. When my focal point got messed up, of  course I had a melt down that would put Chernobyl to shame. At that moment, my world had just ended and I didn’t know what to do.

What was so life changing that I couldn’t see past my own stupidity? Someone else published a book under the name “Amanda Stone”. Of course when I decided to write under that name, it never occurred to me that there would be other “Amanda Stone”s out there. It never dawned on me that it was a common first and last name. Nope, I picked the name. So obviously I had dibs on using it. Right?

Thankfully after talking with some friends of mine I was brought back down to earth. They helped to show me that, while unfortunate that it happened, it’s truly not as life ending as I made it out to be. I was able to slightly change the name and continue on as I have been. So now I am “Amanda C. Stone”. Not much of a change. But at least I don’t have to start all over with a new name.

But it was my Bestie McBesterson (BMB to me, I love her dearly, she tells me things straight and gave me a fabulous smack upside the head to get me out of my Chernobyl sized meltdown) that brought it all into perspective for me. As long as I write quality stories, the name I write under truly doesn’t matter. We had a good laugh about writing under some truly horrible names.

I’m in the process of finishing up the research for my first book. Here’s hoping that my words will speak for themselves and my chosen pen name truly doesn’t matter.