Category Archives: Fun Stuff

Snarky Even in Death – Confessions of a Writer @TinaGerow

grim-reaper4When I die I want to be cremated. I don’t want the guys to spend money on a funeral. I’d rather they have a big party.

BYOB and munchies and invite all of our friends and family. They can tell funny stories about me and remember me with a laugh rather than grief. They can drink and eat and have a good time and know that I’m there watching them have a great party!

And Darian Gerow has promised to dress up as the grim reaper, complete with scythe!  🙂  So hold him to it, everyone!  🙂  Full black hood and the whole deal!!

And I don’t want to sit on someone’s mantle somewhere in an urn so I have to be dusted. I told them to sprinkle me somewhere, or I saw an ad where you can be nourishment to grow a tree 🙂  How cool is that??

I’ve attended many funerals and they were sad and grief-filed and depressing. I want people to laugh and know that I’m off causing mischief on the other side plotting for my next life!

Now don’t think I’m planning on this any time soon. Hell, death has tried to get me a few times already and so far I’m winning the fight 🙂  Mwaaaahaaaaa! But I know someday it will finally come for me. I’m not scared of dying…although HOW I die does concern me a bit. I’d obviously rather go in my sleep peacefully.

When I was in my 20’s I always joked that I’d like to go having hot sex. But I don’t want to do that to poor Jon! How depressing to have your wife die during sex!!

Already passed the brain blowout so gotta find something interesting yet painless and possibly even funny so the people at my party will have something else to crack up about.  And they’ll know I would’ve enjoyed the jokes!

Just make sure there’s lots of butterscotch martinis flowing, Kayce Lassiter, Cheyenne McCray, Bev Petrone, Christ Eaton, Lisa Pietsch & K.T RobertsThe Butterscotch Martni Girls, can raise toasts to me and know I’m making snarky comments and toasting back!!

So there’s my weird confession. I know some people will think this is totally odd. But for those of you who know me well, you’ll probably nod and say, “Yup – Totally Tina”  🙂

Tina 

Help! I see pictures of dead people…

So sometimes truth is really stranger than fiction.  If I would’ve written the following story in one of my books people would say it was too coincidental to ever happen in real life.  To them I have to say, “You’ve obviously never seen my real life!”

About 7 or 8 years ago I caught the genealogy bug and signed up for a free trial long weekend on Ancestry.com.  Now, to be honest, I didn’t do ANYTHING that entire weekend but play on Ancestry and update as much of my family tree in all directions as I humanly could so that I could cancel my “membership” before they pulled their first extremely expensive monthly payment.  I love the idea of the site, but it’s pricey.

Anyway, fast forward to two nights ago.  I received a notification from Ancestry.com that I had received a message from someone.  The subject line was, “I have your family pictures”  That caught my interest so I headed out to the website to log in and read the message.

I hope she won’t mind me reproducing the note here, but it will save me time in summarizing it:

Hello,

I believe that I have your family pictures and artifacts. I have a box containing probably close to 1000 pictures, negatives, birth and death certificates, adoption records, enlistment papers and even baby shoes 🙂 I have been holding on to this box for YEARS in hopes of finding its rightful owners. I don’t want any money. 

I cannot remember exactly how I got it. I was an antique dealer at the time and am a photographer. I am naturally drawn to pictures, frames etc. at auctions so that is probably how I got it. I can’t be sure. I decided not to sell/use these items because it is an amazing, vast collection of someone’s family history. I also believed that I could in fact FIND this family and return it to them. 

Again, I don’t want money. What I want is assurance that I am in fact returning this box to the right family and that the person who receives these items will in fact keep them and treasure them forever. Ideally, I’d like to return these items to the direct descendants of Sarah and Herman Hatcher (hansard?). 

I know this is kinda weird.  I realize that this message may not reach you for quite some time but I plan to hold on to these items until I can return them to the family they belong to. 

VERY cool!  I couldn’t pass up the chance to see if these were really our family photos and documents, so I messaged her back and told her I was in Arizona and asked where she was located figuring I could see how much it was to pay for shipping.

A few hours later I received a response.  Excited, I read the note that told me her cross streets – which were actually less than a mile away from my house!!

My writer’s antennae immediately bristled.  I hadn’t told her WHERE in Arizona I lived, so I was immediately suspicious about how she knew those cross streets would even make sense to me.  So being the nosy person I am – AND a suspicious one I Googled her 🙂  I found out immediately that she was, indeed, a photographer and local.  I also found her Facebook page, and of course checked that out thoroughly as well. Yeah – we writers can stalk with the best of them when we need to…LOL!

As I was digging around on her Facebook page I noticed that we had two friends in common.  Since I have nearly 5000 friends on Facebook, it’s not unthinkable that we would have one or two in common, so I clicked to see who the lucky two were.

Bree & Mark who I worked with at Starbucks for three years!!!

Ah hah!  Progress 🙂  My snoop gene went into overdrive and I dashed off an email and a text to Bree to get the skinny on this woman.  I needed to know if she was legit, or a psycho in order to figure out if there was some type of nefarious angle here or if she truly was a good samaritan who was looking to return our family pictures and things out of the goodness of her heart.

Bree told me that she was a regular customer and a really nice lady.  Bree is awesome and reads people well so I was instantly relieved AND excited!  I had really hoped this wasn’t a scam of some sort, and now I was really dying to see what was inside that box!

I had arranged to call Aronda (the woman who had sent me the note) last night so we could set up a time/place to meet on Wednesday (today). But when I called her last night and we found out about our mutual Starbucks connection she asked if I’d just like to meet her up there?  So while it was still light out I dashed off to Starbucks to meet up with her.  She had told me that she would have a white box with her, and that it said, “Pictures of Dead People” on the side – which cracked me up!  That is something I can TOTALLY see several members of my family writing on a box like that – myself included!

Bree was right! She is a great lady and I stayed to chat with she and her daughter for nearly an hour before I came home with the box full of treasures.  I found out that she knew I probably lived in Arizona because several of the documents in the box had addresses on them – back when we lived less than I mile from where I live now, so she figured I might not have gone far.

As soon as I got home I dug into it and immediately found great stuff!  The first was an original metal social security card for my grandfather 🙂  I also found my grandfather’s birth and death certificates, a receipt from 1957 for my great grandfather’s funeral for $1037, and a newspaper clipping from 1943 with pictures of an Allied invasion force during the war.  Other treasures included my grandfather’s high school diploma, some baby shoes, my 2nd grade class photo and tons of pictures I either hadn’t seen or hadn’t seen in years.

Unfortunately most of the pictures didn’t have anything written on the back, and I didn’t know most of the people or the places.  So I called my Mom and sister to clue them in on the story and to ask my Mom to come over and help me with the box.

My Mom came by this morning, and after I bribed her with breakfast and a Starbucks black tea we sat on the couch with the box between us and dug in.  She wrote the names on the back of pictures she recognized and read off any information that I could add into Ancestry.com, and we made it about a quarter of the way through the box before both of us gave up.  We plan on doing several more of these sessions to see what else we can find, but after my quick perusal last night, I know there’s more great tuff in there.  But Mom knows more of the stories, more of the people and can recognize and help Darian and I put names to a lot of the faces.

It was really fun to see the family resemblance go back through so many people in so many branches of the family.  I found smiles, expressions and even stances that reminded me of my son’s or my sister’s daughter throughout that box.

The best we can figure out is that the box was my grandmother’s favorite/most treasured pictures and memories and when she died it probably went to my brother’s house (he was HUGE on keeping family pictures etc) and then when he died, his horrible wife got rid of it without passing it back to any of the family.  I call her horrible because she now says she doesn’t count being married to Jim because he’s dead…  Yeah – karma will be coming to bite her VERY Soon, I hope!  Not a very nice lady…

But moving right along…I’ve now vowed that I will find time before the end of the year to go through MY box of keepsake pictures from my life and write on the back of them so that some future generation will not have to write “Pictures of Dead people” on the side of my box because they don’t know who all those people are!  Although just for fun I might write “Pictures of Future Dead People” and the date on the side just to screw with someone someday 🙂

I can picture one of Darian’s kids sitting down with my box as well as the box my Mom and I are going through now, cross referencing the Ancestry.com tree I’m building and seeing all the resemblances and similarities we are seeing right now.

It’s been an interesting few days, and makes me nostalgic and itchy to find more information for my family tree, but right now both available time and available money are not abundant so it will have to wait.  But I DO plan on getting back to it and very soon!

And on that note, this makes the second day in a row I haven’t gotten any writing done.  Well…unless you consider this blog!  But my WIP hasn’t grown any.  So I need to take a fortifying nap and then dive back in to my actual work!

I just hope I don’t have creepy dreams about dead people tonight after looking at them for several hours today.  And yes, we did have some of those creepy pictures of family members in their coffins at the funerals…sigh…  I’m not sure why that’s such a Southern Baptist (what I was raised) staple, but we have lots of those, and always had food at EVERYTHING.  LOL…

Moving right along….I’m off to NOT see pictures of dead people for the rest of the day at least 🙂

My Akashic Reading

Today I did something I’ve wanted to do for a really long time.  I had an Akashic reading.

 

For those of you who don’t know what that is, an Akashic reading is a reading based on information contained in your Akashic Scrolls.  In the Bible this is known as The Book of Life.  (Psalm 69:28, Philippians 4:3, Revelation 3:5, 13:8, 17:8, 20:12, 20:15 and Revelation 21:27)  The record of your every thought and deed here on Earth as recorded by God and the angels.

 

And in some belief systems is also believed to contain information on your previous lifetimes.

 

As a paranormal author, this concept has always been fascinating to me.  The possibilities for stories arising from such a library for each person who has ever lived on Earth are unlimited and fun to explore!

 

So after a friend had her own reading and told me about her amazing experience, she introduced me to Simone Gers  and the rest fell into place easily.

 

If you’ve never had a reading there are dozens of great websites on the subject, including Simone’s above in the link.  The reading is entirely based on questions that you ask, and your guides and teachers communicate with the “reader” to answer your questions.  This isn’t a psychic reading, per se, as it doesn’t tell you your future, but helps you put what you want to be in perspective based on your past and present.  It can help you to understand why you end up repeating a certain pattern in your life – perhaps you always choose emotionally unavailable partners or continue to always be broke and sick…whatever your current challenges are, this is a great chance to gain perspective into yourself as well as finding out why those patterns may be repeating.

 

I found it extremely insightful and accurate.  And the book ideas for how to use this experience to make a great paranormal story are already perking inside my head!

 

Simone was a great guide for this process.  She sent me some tips for how to phrase questions for the best responses before our session.  Once the session began she explained how everything would work and talked me through at each stage making sure I didn’t have any questions on the answers I had received or about the process of the information exchange.

 

I came away from the experience energized, feeling light and ready to go to work to break through the roadblocks I’ve been struggling with.

 

There are many different fees out there for such readings (and there are also other types of related readings, check Simone’s web page for the ones she does).  Simone is very reasonable compared with a lot of the sites I saw, but everyone needs to choose someone they are going to be comfortable with.  Like I said, I really loved the experience and would highly recommend Simone from personal experience!  If you have or have had a reading, I’d love to hear your take on the experience.  I won’t ask you for the specific reading details because very personal information is reveled and discussed, but I’d love to hear others’ experiences with this type of reading.

 

Off to noodle my idea for a book based off of this…

 

Tina

A fun puzzle of Seducing the Succubus

No, seriously – this is a jigsaw puzzle of my awesome Cassie Ryan cover for Seducing the Succubus:

My Puzzles Jigsaw Puzzle Gallery – JigZone.com

Back from Romantic Times Convention

  Hi everyone.

I’m back from the Romantic Times Convention (okay, I’ve been back for a week) and I’m finally getting caught back up.  I’m two loads away from laundry being finished and only have a few things left in one of my suitcases left to unpack.

The convention itself was amazing, as usual.  I met tons of terrific fans, got to network with tons of fellow writers and got to touch base with booksellers, librarians and many others within the industry. :)

Thought you all would enjoy a few pictures.

I was on the Fairy Court for the fourth year and was on the Unseelie side (of course!)  Here’s a You Tube video of the Unseelie court.  I’m the first one.

Here’s the You Tube video of the Seelie Court.

Here’s a great You Tube that will give you the general flavor of RT :)

Here’s a picture from the book signingkayla janz

Here’s a picture of Kayla Janz & I at the book signing:

tina gerowHere’s a picture of me on the Unseelie Court.

 

unseeliecourtAnd a picture of the entire Unseelie Court with Will the costume contest winner

 

 

 

 

I’m off to finish laundry and unpacking!  Enjoy :)

Tina/Cassie

Myself as a Superhero

Today is my 6 year wedding anniversary and I just got back from a nice lunch with hubby to celebrate.  Now I’m playing on the computer and generally catching up on Twitter (I’m at @TinaGerow if you want to Tweet!), Facebook, MySpace and all my other technology networking sites :)

Angela James posted a link to a site where you can make yourself a Superhero, so of course, I couldn’t resist trying it out.  Check out the site, and here’s me as a superhero below.  What do you think? :)

whiplash, tina gerow

You’re invited to the 12 Days of Christmas!!

When:  December 23, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST

Where:  http://groups.yahoo.com/group/LizziesTeaRoom/

Join Lizzie T. Leaf and a lot of her author friends for 12 hours of prizes, excerpts and fun.  Opportunities to win every hour.  All you have to do to enter is answer the question  asked at the top of each hour.  After the next question is posted, winners will be drawn from all who responded to the prior question.

Participating authors include, Lizzie T. Leaf, Sloane Taylor, Sam Cheever, Lucynda Storey, Tina Gerow, Renee Knowles, Robin Owens, Melissa Mayhue, Jeanne Stein, Leslee Breene, Cynnara Tregarth, Raine Delight, Tracy Ranson, Eliza Knight, Lena Austin, Bonnie Rose Leigh, Fiona Jayde and others.

In addition to eBooks, print books and whatever the authors throw in the pot, Lizzie will award a “Surprise Prize” to some lucky participant each hour.

Hope to see you there!

This and that…

I’m trying to do a little work on the website each night, but it’s slow going with everything else I have going on.  I did get my book covers up last night, although I still need to do links to reviews, awards, etc.  And I haven’t even started my appearance page yet.  Whew!  I’m tired just thinking about it.  But it needs to get done and once it is, I’ll only have updates, which will be great!

I’m still working on Triangle of Seduction, and am still on track to finish it by the end of the year.  If I can continue to juggle it with Pampered Chef shows, family, writing promo and, oh yeah, sleep – I’ll finish on time :)   Any productive and creative thoughts sent my way will be extremely appreciated!   I’m still listening to soundtracks while I write, which has really increased my productivity–although Phantom of the Opera has somehow eeked into my “Writing Soundtracks” playlist on my iPod.  I need to move it off there because anything with words playing while I write only ensures I’ll end up typing the words to the song…lol.  And neither myself or Andrew Lloyd Weber would quite appreciate Angel of Music appearing in Triangle of Seduction somewhere…lol.

Critique group meets tonight, and we are welcoming a new member.  Well, she’s hung around with us forever, we’ve finally just made it official.  Kayla Janz is our newest Butterscotch Martini Girl!  So, if you get a chance, feel free to pop by and welcome her.  And once I get home from that tonight, I’ll be popping in the next DVD MI-5 (Spooks), Season 2, which is my incentive to get on the treadmill.  Nothing like watching something with Matthew MacFadyen in it to give me an incentive.  He’s such a great actor, and has that “hero” quality about him.  In fact, I’m basing the hero on him for the book I’ll start writing in January.  I’ll tell everyone more about that one once my mind isn’t so occupied with Triangle of Seduction!

Anyway, I’m off to write!