Friday, July 28, 2017

Happy 90th Birthday Mom! And a Free EBook in Your Honor

I'm getting ready for a BIG party on Saturday - my mom's 90th birthday celebration! All birthdays are reasons to celebrate, but reaching 90? Becoming a nonagenarian? Now that's something special, isn't it? Everyone is super-excited, but no one more than Mom, because she never dreamed she'd live this long. We are all blessed.

Here's Mom and me playing our favorite game.

To share this special day with my readers, I'm offering a free Kindle copy of my latest release Birthday Party, 2nd in my Daisy Hunter Series. 

Blurb: It's Suzanne's 13th birthday, and Daisy is shocked and saddened to learn that she's never had a birthday party. So she sets out to give her one, complete with a cake, ice cream, soda, and balloons. But when Suzanne's mother shows up, the party's over. A poignant coming of age story where good will and alcoholism collide.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

AlzAuthors: Suzka Collins, Wonders in Dementialand

By Suzka Collins

Ah… the wonders I found living with my mother in Dementialand. It all started almost minutes after she was diagnosed with progressive dementia. The cause was meningitis encephalitis. There seemed to be no choice at the time. I had to leave my bohemian life in the art world in California to return to a Chicago suburb where my mom was living. I am a painter. This had all the markings of a disaster.

After four years living in Dementialand, I returned to California and remember my friends telling me how sorry they were, how horrible it must have been and what a great sacrifice I made taking care of her. I hadn’t a clue what they were talking about. For me, I was on a crazy cruise of chaos and enchantment. I had to write a book. Dementia was getting a bad rap.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

AlzAuthors: Emily Page and The Fractured Elephant - Because Demented People Need Love Too

By Emily Page

Writing about dementia came about fairly slowly and organically. I'm an artist, so when my dad was diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia at the age of 65, my natural inclination was to start doing paintings about our journey as a sort of self-prescribed art therapy. I used an elephant as both a symbol for and a talisman against dementia, because "an elephant never forgets." As I created paintings, I posted them on social media with an explanation of their meaning, and people really responded to them. At the insistence of a friend, I started a blog to help promote my artwork, and it became a kind of online journal. Before long, I was getting tons of great feedback from my readers when I posted about what we were experiencing as we coped with caregiving. "Me, too!" was a phrase I started hearing a lot.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Christmas in July! Clean Indie Reads Summer eBook Sale! July 17-21

It's mid-summer and most people are thinking of the beach, baseball, barbecues, and family fun. Christmas, most likely, is not a high priority. Unless you're a reader who melts at the end of  a romantic Christmas story or a heartwarming holiday tale. If that's you, any time's a great time to pick up a stack of Christmas reads, and I've got a bunch of them right here. Clean Indie Reads Christmas in July eBook Sale offers 15 titles in a variety of genres - novels, novelettes, short stories, mysteries, and sweet and paranormal romance - sale-priced from FREE to 2.99. Stock up to read on vacation or save them for the holiday season. Sale ends July 21. Note: please check all prices before clicking the "BUY" button. Each individual author is responsible for ensuring the correct sale price for her book(s).

Thursday, July 13, 2017

AlzAuthors: Ann Hedreen and "Her Beautiful Brain," a memoir

By Ann Hedreen

Without quite knowing it at the time, I began working on Her Beautiful Brain in 2004, when my husband and I made an award-winning documentary film about my mother called Quick Brown Fox: an Alzheimer's Story, which has had a long life on PBS stations and remains in distribution through Women Make Movies, Amazon and other sites. Making Quick Brown Fox made me realize there was so much more of my mom's story to tell than our film could contain. I also began to understand that, while I love filmmaking (which is what I do for a living), I have been a writer since I could hold a pencil and I longed to write much more than I was then writing as a filmmaker and occasional journalist.

In 2008, the incredible gift of a two-week residency at the Hedgebrook retreat for women writers got me going, and the Goddard MFA program, which I completed in July 2010, kept me going on what became a book-length memoir.

Her Beautiful Brain is the story of my mother, a copper miner’s daughter who was divorced twice, widowed once, raised six kids singlehandedly, got her B.A. and M.A. at 40 so she could support us as a Seattle schoolteacher—only to start showing signs of Alzheimer’s in her late fifties, taking us all on a long descent we never could have anticipated or imagined.

Monday, July 10, 2017

New Release Spotlight: Misty Point (Misty Point Mystery Series Book 2)

Still reeling from her grandmother's death, Megan Stanford is shocked when her father, Dean, returns to Misty Manor with real estate developer, Randall Douglas. As Randall's business partner, wife and assistant arrive shortly thereafter, it becomes clear he intends to sell his mother's estate at all costs. When a body is found floating in the surf, Megan and her friends realize there is more at stake than the Grand Victorian. Can they work to stop a killer before it's too late? Or will the sale of Misty Manor be the only closure in the books?

Misty Manor, Misty Point Mystery Series, Book One

Three years have passed since Hurricane Sandy devastated the New Jersey Shore as Megan Stanford returns to her childhood home to find her elderly grandmother and the family Grand Victorian home in a state of shocking neglect. As the town threatens to sue to ensure demolition of the guest cottages behind Misty Manor, mystery unfolds in the once quiet town of Misty Point, NJ. A dead body found in the debris, threatening messages, and vandalism, combined with an eerie sixty year old photograph, bring the investigation closer to home. Megan continues to dig for the truth and unwittingly begins to unravel a decades old secret, which threatens her and the future of Misty Manor.
Amazon Purchase Links

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

AlzAuthors: Peggy Bushy and Lewy, Mom and Me:A Caregiver's Story

By Peggy Bushy

When Lewy Body Dementia entered my home, the world as I knew it began to shift, and I found myself in a constant state of confusion. My sweet mother, who lived in our home, was hallucinating, her stories and behavior were becoming more and more bizarre, and I had no idea why - neither did any of the doctors I consulted. Lost and alone, I could feel myself becoming a little more unglued with every passing day while I watched the family rules fly out the window one by one. "Wait! I depend on those family rules." They may not be the same as the neighbor's rules but they're mine, they've been mine forever, and I'm comfortable with them.

Written or unwritten family rules become our guidebook. Even as adults when we partner up with someone else who has a different set of rules, it doesn't take long before we meld them together and find comfort and harmony with the new set. When dementia crept into my life and disorder began to rear its ugly head, my home felt like a foreign country and I didn't speak its language. Confusion and disorder visited before. I was used to a little fracture here and there in my routine. My feathers got ruffled, I talked about it, or researched it, and sometimes received a remedy for an outside source. This time, as hard as I looked I couldn't find a single answer and it wasn't long before all hell broke loose and my harmonious routine turned into anarchy. That's when I joined a support group and the company of others. That's when I learned I had to think outside the guidebook.

My mother was diagnosed with Lewy Body Dementia years after my search for answers and years after family harmony fell apart. After a few weeks of processing the information, I looked for some comfort in a book. I found a few books related to the topic but they were all medical or clinical. I wanted a memoir. A book that would make me laugh, cry, relate, and feel not so alone. Having found nothing, I gathered up my years of journals, and wrote one.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Beach Reads Giveaway! Win up to 45+ eBooks!

Win up to 45+ Beach Reads eBooks! 
(2) Grand Prize "Gift Baskets" of ALL eBooks!
 (40+) Winners of Individual eBooks (randomly selected titles)

I'm off to the beach, and you can bet I've got a bag packed with books, both paperback and loaded on to my Kindle. I love to read on the beach. I can dig deeper into the story as the sound of waves ebbing the shore lulls me into a relaxed state, and the hot sun warms me all over. Heaven! If you love to read on the beach you can win 45 or more new titles in the Authors XP Beach Reads Giveaway, a multi-author, multi-genre event. I'm offering a preview of my YA sports novel Swim Season, great for kids who love to read whether or not they're interested in swimming or sports. Lots of drama and tension. Hey, it's high school. Enter the giveaway now! 

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Summer Love Romance eBook Giveaway!

Ready, set, read! 

If you're like me you know that summer is THE BEST time to indulge in your reading habit, whether on vacation at the pool, the beach, a campground, or just lazing around the house trying to beat the heat. And I've got a great way for you to fill your ereader with lots of new ebooks to keep you reading for weeks: 

I've teamed up with a fantastic group of romance authors to offer you a fine selection of 35 FREE ebooks in a variety of genres - contemporary, new adult, sci-fi, mystery, action, paranormal - ALL with a strong romantic thread. I've included an excerpt from my novel Blue Hydrangeas, an Alzheimer's love story, which takes place on Cape Cod - a perfect summer spot - during five days in July, and, as one reader said, "It's filled with the kind of love most people dream of." 

Plus, we've added ONE $50 gift card to raffle  off to ONE lucky reader. 

Intrigued? Enter here and start reading! Offer ends July 20.