Thursday, March 31, 2016

A-Z Blog Challenge Letter A

A is for acceptance. Accepting what you cannot change and learning to live with it. Accepting yourself for the amazing person you are. Live your life for you not for the expectations of others.

Accept your accomplishements and learn to gracefully accept the compliments given to you. Really you have earned them.

We tend to be our own worst emenies as we can find all the things wrong with ourselves and we don't look at the positives. Start looking at the good qualities you have and embrace them. Forget the things you don't like as you focus on the ones you do, the ones you don't will disappear or fade.

If you are a writer, accept your writing. Share it with others for critique, remember the feedback you get is not directed at you, but directed at making your writing better.

Should you get an acceptance letter for anything be like this young lady and share it.

Remember acceptance is a good thing.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

If You're Going to Write, Write Well

If you're going to be a writer, be the best writer you can be. It means using the words you choose correctly. It's probably the English teacher in me, or maybe it's the editor in me. I'm not sure which, but incorrect use of words makes me crazy. It makes me crazier when people win book awards and they have used incorrect words.

I have a list of words you shouldn't use. They are as follows:
         1. am
         2. are
         3. is
         4. was
         5. were
         6. have
         7. has
         8. had
         9. be
       10. then
       11. may
       12. could
       13. would
       14. should
       15. been
       16. that

Getting rid of these words when you write makes your writing crisper and more to the point. It prevents you from using passive voice and puts you in active voice. I understand these are verbs and helping verbs. They help fog up your writing and put you in passive voice. Both things will make your writing second rate.

My writing is not perfect. I work all the time to improve it. One of the things I've noticed in leaving these words out, my story moves faster. There is action. It doesn't get bogged down. It's moving out of the second rate stage and becoming first rate writing.

The other thing you need to do is get a good editor. Find a retired English teacher who is willing to work with you to make your writing better. Use the Find button on your word program and look for the words on the list. What can you replace it with? Or can you eliminate it altogether? Make those changes.

Then and than are often used interchangeably. They have two different meanings and using them this way is wrong. Then is a time. What happened next? Then we went to the store. Than is a comparison. Sally is older than Bob. Two different uses.

The word 'that' is highly overrated. Don't use it. Most of the time when it is used, it is used incorrectly. It's a space taker and adds nothing to your writing.

Ultimately, you have to decide what you are writing. Just make it the best you can.


Monday, March 21, 2016

Allstate the Saga Continues Part 3

Allstate (the not so great hands) Saga 3:
 I filled a complaint with the South Carolina Department of Insurance. Who then forwarded the information on to Allstate. Imagine a representative from the claims department called me this afternoon. He must think I'm an idiot. His loss. The jump in my policy has nothing to do with the rate hike. Um, yeah right. How come when they do an override, Nationwide can get me a better price for better coverage? Makes one wonder how they can lie and expecat you to believe them. They have it coded right, they cannot imagine why anyone else thinks I'm high risk. Really??? Explain it to Progressive, Liberty Mutual, State Farm, Geico, and Nationwide. The coding is the reason my rates have jumped from $569 to $770 for six months. On one car with one driver. I've not had a ticket in so long I can't remember when I got it. Oh wait, on my way to the flower warehouse to pick out flowers for my sister's wedding...over 30 years ago. My last accident was someone running a stop sign and yes, I was injured and yes, my car was totaled. Oh wait, that will be 19 years ago come May. How do they get away with this stuff???? I will be dropping Allstate in April both auto and home. I'm done with the lies.

Saturday, March 19, 2016

The Allstate (not so good hands) saga.

Today I filed a complaint with South Carolina Deparment of Insurance. I have been told I need to send a letter to Consumer's Report and to the local paper (Post and Courier). It has already hit the internet. Not only did I post here on Tues. I also posted on my blog which was shared wtih Google +, Twitter, and LinkedIn. You don't want to know the reach I have. What is the worst thing you can do to a writer???? Piss them off. Writers are good at networking. I have writer friends from the Atlantic coast to the Pacific coast. I even have writer friends across both those ponds. I have writer friends from Canada to the Mexican border. I even have a few friends south of the border. So Allstate, you messed with the wrong woman. Been not so nice knowing you. May we never cross paths again. You can't make me a high risk driver when I have proof I did not cause the accident. Nice try. I don't play games. But when I do I play to win and take no prisoners.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

PO'd Would be the Polite Way to Say This

Rant on: I had an auto accident on Feb. 1st. In SC we do not have no-fault. If you cause the accident, you pay. I DID NOT cause the accident I was the victim. Allstate (the not so good hands people) are my insurance company. They took care of the claim and collected from the other guys insurance company (State Farm). I know they collected because I got my deductible back. Because I purchased a new car my rates went up. I can live with that. However, when the agent calls and tells me I need to have an epolicy program and some stupid app for my phone to get discounts I start getting suspicious. Imagine my surprise, when my auto insurance jumps $400/year. But there is no penalty for having an accident....they LIE. That is the penalty for having the accident.
So, I start shopping for auto and home insurance. Might as well have them together and get that discount. Um, wrong. Not sure why the rates are coming in at outrageous until I visit the local Nationwide office this afternoon.
My NOT so good hand people have me in the computer as being the person who caused the accident making me a high risk to insure. I have the paper from the police stating I was not at fault. Nationwide can override it. Once they do so, my insurance will drop $284/year from what Allstate wants to charge me. And if I am a good customer, no accidents, no tickets for the next six months, they can look at lowering it. Although they are all getting rate increases April 1. She ran the policy for when mine is up on April 15.
Not only that she ran the print out of what was paid on my claim. According to what Allstate put in the computer, I received $7,309 in settlement on my car. Um, no. I recived $6,937. Wonder where the missing $372 went???? Another issue I will be taking up with the claims department tomorrow.
Will I be changing insurance companies? Oh, hell yes. This rotten company made me look like a liar. NOT ACCEPTBLE.. ever. Then they LIED about the amount of money they settled with me for. Again UNACCEPTABLE...always.
I'm ranting beause I made a promise to Mike I would not take anyone out over this. He is short bail money right now. But, I didn't promise I wouldn't tell the world what an awful company they are. Rant over.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Released Today

The second edition of Target of Vengeance released today. It has an updated cover, interior, and is now available in print as well as ebook.

After a tragic car accident and the loss of  her family, Maggie Parsons finds herself back in her hometown as its new elementary principal. Just as she thinks she on her feet, odd occurances begin to happen at school and at home. Vandalism, missing children, strange telephone calls...and it seems to center around her old classmates. Now Sheriff Norton has to find out what is happening before another target of vengeance is selected.

Be sure to get yours now.


My laptop has been at full capacity for the past two weeks. It's nice to be consistently writing again. It's been hit or miss for...