I Am What I Say I Am


My son sent me a link to a study by WalletHub that ranked West Virginia (our home state) as the worst place to live. He was shocked.
I was too. We can usually count on Mississippi, Kentucky, or Alabama to carry the honor.
"We're the worst, huh?" I asked.
"Yeah," he said. "I didn't realize it was so bad here..."
"Fuggitabout it," I said. "People love to tell people how sucky their lives are. Ignore it and be happy."
He was satisfied.
But I wasn't.
I've been sick of these sort of "studies" since I was in college.
My first week at Marshall University, I got a letter from my adviser to go to a seminar for first generation college students (neither of my parents graduated college). I dutifully went and took my place among the other first generationers. The professor took the podium and commenced giving us the sh*ttiest pep talk ever. It seemed, as first generationers, we were doomed to failure. The statistics proved that very few of us would finish. Not only did we NOT come from households that were understanding and conducive to the education experience,but we were also-- GASP-- from the Appalachian region of the nation. The way this guy talked, the only people with a scarier start were the ones living in boxes in Detroit.
I started to think this little talk was worse than a waste of my time. It was detrimental to my psyche. I mean would I tell a runner who's lined up at the starting line, "Whoa, dudette, you look way chunkier than everyone else here, so we're going to ask you to untie your shoes and run backward, so when you fail, you won't take it personally."
Thanks, but no thanks.
I refused to return for the rest of the meetings.
I don't see the point of negative thinking. As a lifetime resident of the Mountain State, I've grown up hearing all about our failures. Personally, I think the obsession with the negatives is taught too early and too often, handicapping people from the get-go. How is a person supposed to see the stars, much less reach for them, when people keep handing them umbrellas to protect them from the sky they're certain will fall at any time?
Statistics can't tell you who you are and what you're capable of being.

Now, onto the regularly scheduled portion of this post :)

Thanks to our hosts LexaL.G, and Tonja Drecker for this weekly good things check in!  

We went the better part of the week with a half-plugged sewage line. I didn't realize how spoiled I was by such things as flushing toilets and long showers.

My husband snaked the drain; the plumbers snaked the drain; and finally my husband and kids dug up the yard and snaked the drain from the underground clean out.

The clog was fixed and we're back to flushing at will.

That's a very good thing!

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FreeFall_BackworldsBook7_3DSoft release date for FreeFall, Backworlds Book 7, May. Subject to change because life stuff is in flux. Progress is being made. The secrets of the planet Iax are revealed. Craze finds out whether he can ever go home again. War stuff is starting. Oh no! Lots of drama and opera in space.

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Backworlds_BoxCollectionBooks1-3
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Projected release date for Backworlds Collection, Volumes 1-3, end of February. Again depending on life stuff being in flux. Started reading through them and marking up any stray typos. Getting it ready for formatting.

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What if the government tried to create the perfect utopia? Could a society linked to a supercomputer survive on its own? Do our reflections control secret lives on the other side of the mirror? Can one moment split a person’s world forever?

Exploring the fantastic, ten authors offer incredible visions and captivating tales of diverse reality. Featuring the talents of L. G. Keltner, Crystal Collier, Hart Johnson, Cherie Reich, Sandra Cox, Yolanda Renee, Melanie Schulz, Sylvia Ney, Michael Abayomi, and Tamara Narayan.

Hand-picked by a panel of agents and authors, these ten tales will expand your imagination and twist the tropes of science fiction. Step through the portal and enter another dimension!

And I leave you with a gorgeous parting image of MURDER (open with death, close with death...)
The amazing COVER REVEAL (and new covers) for Yolanda Renee's MURDER collection!

Flames burn between a hardboiled cop and a gifted artist, but soon extinguish as another man’s obsession ignites into an inferno of desire, driving him to destroy the object of his madness.

As wedding bells echo like the ring of toasting champagne glasses in the ice carved mountains of Anchorage Alaska, detective Steven Quaid rehabs his grandfather’s cabin into a honeymoon cottage for his new bride.

When he returns from a hunting trip, Steven’s faced with five police officers, who “Want to talk.” Plagued by two unsolved murders, the Department is searching for answers.

Steven’s jaw clenches and his heart races. Images of Sarah streak through his mind. The silence breaks as an explosion of accusations vibrate through every fiber of his being. Steven bolts…

This Steven Quaid mystery is both personal and heartbreaking.

Yolanda's first two MURDER novels:





MURDER & OBSESSION, Book Three 
to be released March 10.


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