10-12 – Pippa Jay

Monday, October 14, 2019

Superheroes Don’t Need Capes!

By: Marcia King-Gamble

On February 14, 2018,  when a troubled, former student, opened fire with a semi-automatic rifle, killing 17 people, and injuring 17 in Parkland,  my life, like so many others, was irrevocably changed.  I live in a town just a sneeze away from Parkland, and the Stoneman Douglas High School massacres affected me in a very personal way.

No, I did not have kids attending the high school where the shootings took place. In fact, the closest to knowing any of the affected kids, is my friend’s, daughter’s boyfriend, who told  a harrowing account of spending 3 hours in a closet, praying for his life.  

For days after that event, people were in such shock, they remained frozen in their homes.  Local establishments had a downturn in business, as strangers mourned the loss of innocent lives, and neighbors feared for their safety. It took months for some sense of normalcy to return to our area. Life as we knew it was forever changed, and we no longer took our safety for granted.

For those readers who know little about Parkland, it’s an affluent city in Broward County, Florida, and the last place anyone would have expected something like this to happen.  The median income in 2016 was $131,340, and median home prices were close to $600, 000.  The community is primarily residential and labeled suburban living at it best with vast expanses of greenery. Every first and third Sunday during the winter season (yes Florida has winters,) people come from all over to buy fresh, organic products and flowers at the popular Farmers Market.

But back to the superhero theme that is this month’s topic. Some good did come out of this devastating tragedy. Out of the ashes came the Never Again Movement.  The organization is best known by the Twitter hashtags #NeverAgain, and #EnoughIsEnough. It was the brainchild of twenty students surviving the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, massacre. They’d decided enough was enough. These are my superheroes. The folks I celebrate in this month’s blog.

This initially grassroots operation, staged protests demanding legislative action be taken to prevent similar shootings in the future. These young voices vocally condemned U.S. lawmakers who received political contributions from the National Rifle Association (NRA,) and won a stunning victory against the NRA in the Florida legislature when both houses voted for various gun control measures. As a result, the law increased funding for school security and raised the required age to buy a gun from 18 to 21

Kudos to prominent members like  Alfonso CalderonSarah ChadwickJaclyn CorinRyan DeitschEmma GonzálezDavid HoggCameron Kasky, and Alex Wind. You are my superheroes! You made it happen!

Flash forward almost two years later, while the group hasn’t been able to stop mass shootings. (There have been more than 300 since then, leaving more than 300 people dead, and more than 1,300 wounded.) That doesn’t mean they’ve failed. The important thing is they took a stand. They made news and they did not back down! 

Because these students spoke up and marched, the old guard was shaken up. Small as progress may seem, they made a difference.  They proved that raising your voice forces you to be heard.

These are the qualities that make them superheroes in my book, especially in a world that labels today’s youth as the “Me Generation.”

About Marcia King-Gamble
Romance writer, Marcia King-Gamble originally hails from a sunny Caribbean island where the sky and ocean are the same mesmerizing shade of blue. This travel industry executive and current world traveler has spent most of life in the United States. A National Bestselling author, Marcia has penned over 34 books and 8 novellas. Her free time is spent at the gym, traveling to exotic locales, and caring for her animal family.
Visit Marcia at www.lovemarcia.com or “friend” her on Facebook: http://bit.ly/1MlnrIS
Be sure to join her mailing list.

Saturday, October 12, 2019

Romancing the #Superhero #romance

Hi, I'm Pippa Jay, author of sci-fi and supernatural stories to engage your emotions.
And when it comes to superheroes, I don't really need to persuade you to love them...do I? Is there anyone who doesn't love them? And even, occasionally, loves the villain too (or even instead). I guess you're probably feeling some serious withdrawal symptoms after Avengers: Endgame - I know I am. So I thought I'd recommend some of my favourite superhero romances where you can fall in love with the superhero (or villain), or watch them figure out how they work romance into their hectic lives!
Liana Brooks - Heroes and Villains series
We all have our favorite superhero stories – now it's the villains' turn to talk. 

Zephyr Girl broke into Dr. Charm's lab looking for the affair of the century; she found happily ever after instead. But now, seven years later, Tabitha walks away with no warning, and Evan faces the ultimate decision: world domination, or the woman he loves? With their four loveable daughters, Evan sets out to rescue his wife—and his marriage—proving that Even Villains Fall In Love. 

Hunted by The Company as a rogue hero, Angela, eldest of the quads, heads to California—because Even Villains Go To The Movies. When a gang of super-powered jewel thieves hit town, Angela must choose between lying low or helping a superhero who's too hot for his own good—in more ways than one. 

In Even Villains Have Interns, Angela's sister Delilah hears rumors of big-game hunters in town and a mysterious drug that everyone—including The Company—is after. Teaming up with the spooky Spirit of Chicago, she aims to take down the dealers, the mobsters, the kingpin, and The Company. The only thing that might be difficult is doing it all without falling in love...

Erica Hayes - Sapphire City series

In a world where everyone wears a mask, you can't trust anyone… not even yourself.

Verity Fortune was once Sapphire City’s top crime-fighter, wielding her powers of telekinesis to battle the city’s most despicable villains. Now, she’s consumed by a single burning desire: revenge. Against those who took away her mask, her memory, and nearly her life.

Having escaped from the asylum they left her to rot in, Verity dons her mask once again and becomes the Seeker, a vigilante warrior for truth.

But when she unwittingly uncovers an evil conspiracy deep within her own family, she’s suddenly on the run, alone and hunted by those she thought were on her side…
Superpowers don't make you a hero.

Verity Fortune's crime-fighting days are over. In exile, defeated by her smug supervillain nemesis, her shady past exposed—even her own superpowered family condemn her as a traitor. Whatever it takes, Verity's determined to prove she can still be a force for good.

Now, Sapphire City faces a new threat. A delinquent duo with extraordinary powers and a terrifying talent for destruction. Outmatched and on the run, her telekinetic powers faltering, Verity can't defeat this menace alone—but who can she trust, when the only person who believes in her is her arch-enemy?

Super Zero by Rhonda Stapleton
When Jenna Peterson signs on as personal shopper-slash-assistant for top superhero The Machine, she's disgusted to learn of his philandering ways against his wife Rapido, the second most powerful superhero in the area--and he's cheating with Jenna's cousin, to boot! But when The Machine gives Jenna the opportunity to safeguard the changing crystal, a jewel that grants or changes superpowers, Jenna jumps on the opportunity, eager to do this so-called "cake" job that will help her earn more street cred with the Midwest League of Superheroes.

The League pairs Jenna up with a bodyguard, the dark, mysterious, and thoroughly grumpy Vigilante. Their personalities are oil and water, but a deep attraction pulls them together, even if they don't fully trust one another.

Soon, Jenna learns the threat to the changing crystal is all too real, and the list of people she can trust grows shorter by the minute. But when she discovers something even more sinister afoot, involving Vigilante's sexy arch nemesis Dementrix, it'll take all her skills to keep the mad villainess from executing her plan to unmask the world's superheroes...especially when Jenna accidentally becomes one herself.

                        And last of all, I have one myself...
When Dark Falls
In a city where Dark Technologies Inc. now runs the show, Kadie Williams has more immediate concerns than the fall of Blaze, their guardian superhero. Almost every morning for the last few months she’s woken up with cuts and bruises on her body, and no idea how she got them. There are no nightmares. No evidence that she sleepwalks, or any sign of a break in. And nothing to tell her who’s been cleaning up after her. As just one of thousands of civilians conscripted to slave away in the labs of Professor Dark, she knew there'd be trouble ahead. But she never expected it to be so bad, or so personal.
Desperate for answers, Kadie looks to the new defender of the night, the only person who can hinder the total domination of Professor Dark—Nocturnelle. The mysterious vigilante superhero came from nowhere with her cybernetic sidekick Shadow, set on putting an end to the brutality of Dark's regime. But as his laboratories work on a new secret super-weapon, Nocturnelle and Shadow may not be enough to save Nephopolis...or to save Kadie either.           


Friday, October 11, 2019

Which Witch Novel is Your Favorite?

Happy fall and Halloween! When spooks or ghosts or spirits (not sure which one is correct) walk the earth, and witches fly by in the night.

I had never read any kind of witch 
paranormal books. And then one day, I was on my lunch hour from work and walking in Safeway. Near the checkout stand was a rack of books. One cover in particular caught my eye, “Breath of Magic”, by Teresa Medeiros, and I bought it.

This book is what I would call a light paranormal. Not a lot of blood and gore, in fact hardly any. Puritan witch, Arian Whitewood gets more than she bargains for during a witch hunt and she and the broom she is riding on, crash land into the 20th century and the arms of the hero. A love story mixed with time-travel and magic! I fell in love!

After reading “Breath of Magic”, I bought the second book, “Touch of Enchantment”, and followed the journey of Arian’s daughter, Tabitha Lennox, from the 20th century back seven centuries into the past, and straight into the path of a horse ridden by a chain-mailed warrior.
Now I was totally hooked on paranormal romance. Witches are the best!! Who doesn’t love magic?

I’ve read many books since those first two containing a witch heroine or hero, magic and sometimes time-travel. I’ve loved them all.

This summer I read Nora Roberts trilogy starting with the first in the series “Dark Witch”. You just can’t go wrong with a book written by Nora, excellent series.

My very favorite book I’ve read would have to be “The Witch’s Daughter”, by Paula Brackston. I read this book last year. I will always keep this book. Not only is “The Witch’s Daughter “a well written story, it’s written in first person, which I normally don’t care for. I was drawn right into the story from page one.

And yet, the story drew me in, kept me captivated and I forgot all about first person.

The magic of these books led me to write about... you guessed it, Witches!
My book  "The Witch with the Trident Tattoo", is available at all venues. If you haven't checked out  Windtree Press , my publisher, you should do it for a wide variety of books for sale..

Another book is "Love & Magick", an anthology by Sarah Raplee, Judith Ashley and me. And you guessed it, filled with intriguing stories of magic!

These are some of my favorite witch stories. Do you have a favorite?

Thursday, October 10, 2019

Everyday things are special by Lynn Lovegreen

Note: This blog was first posted on lynnlovegreen.com.

As an Alaskan, I’m used to visitors oohing and aahing over our mountains, moose, and the other things that stand out about my home. Now I’m traveling Outside, and it’s my turn to be the visitor noticing all the things that make the Lower 48 different. Here’s a short list of things that are novelties or interesting to me:
toll roads
corn fields
truck stops
red dirt

As they say, it’s all in what you’re used to. What may seem normal to you can be odd to someone else. Each place has its landscape or people (or both) that make it special. We all live in distinctive environments.

Take a good look around your area, and think about what makes it unique. Then it’s easy to remember that what’s ordinary to you is extraordinary to someone else. There’s much to value wherever we are. What do you enjoy that’s special about the place where you live?

Lynn Lovegreen has lived in Alaska for fifty years. After twenty years in the classroom, she retired to make more time for writing. She enjoys her friends and family, reading, and volunteering at her local library. Her young adult historical fiction is set in Alaska, a great place for drama, romance, and independent characters. See her website at www.lynnlovegreen.com. You can also find her on Facebook and Instagram.

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

No Superman Cloak Required

Hi everyone! 

I am Young Adult and Middle Grade author Barbara Binns, writer of contemporary and realistic fiction for adolescents and teens. As my tagline says, I write Stories of Real Boys Growing Into Real Men - and the people who love them.  

Over the weekend, I was invited to speak at the 2019 StoryStudio Writer's Festival at Columbia University in Chicago. James Klise, fellow YA author and Edgar Award winner, interviewed me about my most recent middle grade novel, Courage. In the process we talked about what it means to have courage, and shared information from Courage, and my work in project.

One particular line from this working  manuscript relates to this month's Romancing The Genres subject, superheroes:

"He is my hero, no superman cloak required."

This line is from my teen hero, speaking about his father. It's important to me, because I tend to write family dramas, about real people and their all-too real lives.

Superheroes are great. Lord knows Marvel’s Infinity Saga had me mesmerized. I was a Xena, Warrior Princess fan when I was younger, and I liked watching Wonder Woman, both Linda Carter and Gal Gadot. But mostly, I like ordinary men and women. People who rise to the occasion when a real-life crisis occurs.

People like Clara Belle Drisdale, a “hidden figure” in her own right. Born in 1885, her parents were former slaves and sharecroppers. She earned a scholarship and graduated as class valedictorian from Prairie View Normal and Industrial College now (Prairie View A & M University) in 1908. Armed with her certificate in Domestic Arts, she took over as head of the sewing department at Prairie View.

That was just her start. After marrying Jaspar Williams, she spent over 20 years, during a time when Las Cruces public schools were segregated, Clara taught Black students at Booker T. Washington school by day, and their parents, mainly former slaves, by night.

She also chose to continue her own education by enrolling at the segregated school now known as New Mexico State University (NMSU). Many of her professors refused to allow her inside their classrooms, forcing her to stand in the halls to listen and take notes. Despite the significant obstacles discrimination placed before her, she received a bachelor’s degree in English from NMSU in 1937. Even then, she wasn’t allowed to walk with her class to get her diploma because of segregation laws.

In addition to going after her own education, she raised three sons. All three achieved medical degrees. Mrs. Willliams' middle son, Dr. James B. Williams, was part of a handful of young men who became one of the Tuskegee Airmen, America’s first black airmen. He was one of the 101 black officers who attempted to integrate a segregated officers’ club in what became known as the Freeman Field Mutiny. In later years, he served as physician to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., when the civil rights leader lived in Chicago.

Her eldest son became chairman of obstetrics and gynecology at St. Bernard Hospital in Chicago. He was a fellow of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology, and past president of the Cook County Physicians Association, and a founding director of the Seaway National Bank of Chicago, now the country’s largest black-owned bank. Working together, the three men went on to found the Williams Clinic in Chicago, Illinois.

In 1961, New Mexico State University renamed a street on the NMSU-Las Cruces campus as Williams street in her honor. She received an Honorary Doctorate of Laws degree from the university in 1980.

On Sunday, February 13, 2005, New Mexico State University celebrated Clara Belle Williams day, “in honor of a person who was unquestionably a pioneer,” in the words of President Michael Martin. As an additional honor, the school renamed the English Building, which houses English Department classrooms and offices, as well as the writing center, as Clara Belle Williams Hall.

This real-life superwoman succeeded  in pursuing higher education despite the significant obstacles discrimination placed before her.

After a lifetime serving as an inspiration to her family and the people she met, she died on July 3, 1994 at the age of 108.

This all combines to make me name the fictional school in that work-in-progress after this remarkable woman.  Even more, I am looking into making Clara Belle and her daring Tuskegee Airman son the subject of a future biography I will write.

I plan to do more than simply worship this superhero from afar.

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Extraordinary in the Ordinary By Eleri Grace

A “superhero” is a fictional character with extraordinary or superhuman powers or an exceptionally skilled or successful person.

Rather than paying tribute to the numerous actual people who populate my life and have exceptional or superhuman perseverance, strength, and empathy for others, I decided to write today about a group of women who straddle both worlds in a sense.  The heroines of my Clubmobile Girls novels are fictional, yet they are rooted firmly in our documented history. Based on the thousands of women who answered the call to wartime service with the American Red Cross, my heroines have a strong sense of duty and patriotism, resilience, an adventurous and independent streak, and exceptional courage.

Courage is the first word in the title of my first Clubmobile Girls novel, and it is the attribute my heroines call forth more than any other. As all good fictional characters do, my heroines must summon their mental strength to withstand and extricate themselves and others from dangerous situations. But my heroines evidence mettle from the beginning, way before they are in any sort of perilous situation. Indeed, they have built up and drawn on an enormous reservoir of tenacity before my readers meet them. Of course, most American women served in some capacity during WWII, whether working in a factory or defense plant, enlisting in one of the auxiliary military service units, volunteering with the USO, the Red Cross, or a local hospital, or tending a victory garden and economizing in her household. But the women who secured overseas assignments with the American Red Cross evinced particularly exceptional spirit and drive.

Well before the first women shipped out, before their overseas work was operational, the Red Cross intuited that the women who would organize and staff their clubs and mobile units all over the world must be self-starters with stamina, confidence, and adaptability.
Most of the women who applied (only one in six would be successful) were poised, charming, and accomplished professionals who could draw on a varied life experience. They were good conversationalists who could hold their own in a male-dominated environment, who could laugh at a dirty joke but retain “girl next door” respectability, who could offer comfort and stability to both the homesick and shell-shocked soldiers. But it was her inner fortitude that likely won her the job, and it will be that same strength that will see her through it all.

Stand in her shoes and close your eyes. It’s 1942, and you’ve just signed on for the duration.
You don’t know where you will be posted (a bomber base in southeast England or in the large cities of southeast Australia, a club in Algiers, Calcutta or Chungking, a train serving men working in the deserts of Persia, a naval base in Iceland or Cuba) or what your day-to-day work will entail. You don’t know when you might next see your parents or family and friends. Tied to that, of course, is the dawning realization that you don’t know what the “duration” actually means. You have no crystal ball that shows a return to normalcy by 1946. You don’t know yet how the war years will shape and change you profoundly, how those years more than any others will stand out as having been the most meaningful of your entire life. But you know one thing for certain: you wouldn’t trade this opportunity to serve your country with courage for anything.

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon CA  ~  Amazon AU  Google ~ Nook  ~ Kobo

Learn more about me and my writing on my website, and you can also find me on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram

Monday, October 7, 2019

My Top Two Real Life Heroes by Paty Jager

If my mom were alive, I'm pretty sure she would agree with me on my top two real life heroes. They are my daughters. I can remember my mom telling me how brave I was for driving 6 hours by myself with small children to visit her. When I flew to New York state to attend a writing conference by myself she said she would never have been brave enough to do that alone. My mom would be even more in awe of her two granddaughters. I know I am!

The oldest has a husband in law enforcement. That in itself is something many couldn't deal with. She is strong and has her faith and the knowledge her husband is well trained. She spends lots of time by herself with their two daughters, one of which has some special needs and can be a handful at times. Yet, my oldest takes it all in stride, holding it together better than I would. She can also shoot better than her husband, grow a wonderful garden, and keep her daughters' animals and poultry healthy. She is more rounded in her knowledge than I am.

My daughters when they were young.
My youngest daughter has six kids! The youngest is 2 months old and the oldest turns 15 this month. She not only home schools the three oldest children, but does it all alone while her husband finishes out his tour with the Coast Guard. This family of 8 is seven miles down the road from us. My husband helps out with the framing/ranching when he can and I help watch kids when I'm needed. But the majority of the work: building rooms, chicken pens, picking rocks, sowing fields is up to my daughter and the kids. She not only takes care of her family, she makes baby quilts for all her cousins as they have new babies, helps her in-laws, and designs book covers.

My daughters grown and starting out on their lives.
While I've always thought of myself as pretty self-reliant and undaunted by tasks that have to be accomplished, I do believe my daughters are braver and more self-reliant than I ever was or will be. They are strong women who are definitely my heroes.

Paty Jager is an award-winning author of 40 novels, 8 novellas, and numerous anthologies of murder mystery and western romance. All her work has Western or Native American elements in them along with hints of humor and engaging characters. Paty and her husband raise alfalfa hay in rural eastern Oregon. Riding horses and battling rattlesnakes, she not only writes the western lifestyle, she lives it.

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Saturday, October 5, 2019

What is the Obsidian Rim? by SFR Author Jody Wallace

Early this year (2019), Jessa Slade (w/a Elsa Jade http://www.elsajade.com/) contacted me about a project she and Maggie Lynch (https://maggielynch.com/) were helming. Like Thieves’ World and Heroes in Hell, they envisioned a shared world concept set in the far future, after the devastating effects of war had destroyed nearly all of the “Salty Way” galaxy except for the outer rim. How would humanity have endured after achieving great heights of civilization and technology only to be forced back into hardscrabble survival on a limited number of M-class planets?

Obviously, humanity would have endured in part in the traditional way—via romances and making some babies! Thus the authors in the shared world would be writing adventurous romances (Not generally with babies, though, because adventure. And guns.) about the explorations, the danger, and the joys to be had by the humans inhabiting the Obsidian Rim .

So far we have launched eleven books in the series, from revolts on mining plants to intergalactic shenanigans with princes and mob bosses to the discovery of sentient beings whose intelligence rivaled or possibly surpassed our own.

I’m talking about CATS, of course, in the Cat Ship Trilogy that is my contribution to the Obsidian Rim’s offerings. Though Jessa and Maggie were very firm about certain aspects of worldbuilding (stories would take place in the Rim itself, no alien intelligence, no messin’ up other people’s ideas), cats did not count as alien intelligence because they’re already among us, bossing us around. 

Thanks to the premise of Maggie’s books, wherein the q-bombs that destroyed the universe also enhanced a few humans with limited but useful abilities related to stellarship navigation, I decided that same effect could be extended to cats, who finally learned to communicate their superior intellect to their waitstaff, aka two-leggers.

I also decided that humanity in any civilization is going to need somewhere to take the trash, and thus Trash Planet was born.

Cats and trash. What more could you want out of an adventure romance series? Find out more about Catalyst at http://jodywallace.com/books/catalyst/ and encourage me to keep editing Catapult, which is the second in the series due to come out in a month or two.

So a little more about the various offerings. Maggie Lynch’s Cryoborn Gifts series and the first book, Gravity, instigates the whole world with a pirate heroine crashing on a mining planetoid and getting accidentally involved with an escaped miner who just wants to save his children. The next book (and series) belongs to Elsa Jade with Rock Rift  and the Edge of Sunrise series, wherein the miners who got crashed into in the first book plan and execute a revolt from their masters—that is, if the sexy secret agent from a doomsday type cult doesn’t spoil it for them. Third in the release list is Traitor’s Code  by Jane Killick (the Freelance series) where a sort-of innocent freelance stellarship captain gets involved with the prince of an agricultural planet in a deep conspiracy that may involve his entire family.

The fourth series we get to taste, Pipettes and Plows, is the science adventure from Shree C Aier, Coexistence  which relates, like Traitor’s Code, to the food issues that the inhabitants of the entire Rim have in the absence of places to raise plants and animals when a sheltered scientist and a farmer are sent to the edge of the galaxy for research. Next we delve into the world of mercenaries for hire, nanobot tech, and space royalty with Mercenary Royal and the Dead Suns series  by Shona Husk when a pampered princess must learn to become a dangerous mercenary if she’s to survive a plot by her family’s rivals.

Sela Carsen’s Fate’s Favor series begins with Ace’s Odds, set on the glitzy Gizem space station where the mob boss’s daughter and a desperate smuggler team up to keep her family safe—or tear it down from the inside. My own Cat Ship series involves a garbage picker on Trash Planet who finds a man in the garbage—and a talking cat. Last but not least in the series countdown we have the Ghost Planet series by CJ Cade and her book Hunter Green where a down on her luck waitress tries to hide on the strange planet of Vorona, but the leader of the only settlement there doesn’t want her bringing her bad luck to his attempt at a new life.

The Obsidian Rim adventures strike a rich balance between romance and science fiction, more Romancing the Stone than 9 ½ Weeks in space. As readers we love to read all across the romance genre, and as authors we are adoring the experiment of the shared world and larger-than-life intergalactic quests. Books from different authors have links to each other, sly little mentions and connections, but the Obsidian Rim novels do not have to be read in order to make sense. I hope you’ll pick up a book and visit some day soon!

Author, Editor, Cat Person, Amigurumist of the Apocalypse

Jody Wallace grew up in the South in a very rural area. She went to school a long time and ended up with a Master’s Degree in Creative Writing. Her resume includes college English instructor, technical documents editor, market analyst, web designer, and general, all around pain in the butt. Ms. Wallace writes sf/f romance with occasional forays into contemporary romance. She resides in Tennessee with one husband, two children, four cats, one bearded dragon, and a lot of junk. When not writing, she crochets things she shouldn’t and drinks too much coffee. At all times she is ruled by the eternal Meankitty of the Soul.

Friday, October 4, 2019

My Own Super Hero - Bill

Hi, I’m Judith Ashley, author of The Sacred Women’s Circle series, soul nourishing romantic women’s fiction that honors pagan spiritual practices. My stories show you what life could be like if you had a place like The Circle where you are unconditionally accepted, supported and loved. And where, with this support, you do overcome obstacles and find your happily-ever-after.

OMG, my list is long in part because I’ve lived a long life and in part because over the years I’ve known people I love and admire.

While there are people from the history books that I see as heroes and heroines, in my own life I’ve people I’ve put on this list. However, to include them here makes this post over 1000 words long! So, I’m moving them to a New Document and will write about them on my personal blog sometime this month or next.

However, there is one person who has made a profound impression on how I live my daily life.

Who might my Superhero be?

Dr. William Glasser. In the 1960’s Dr. Glasser was faced with ridicule and disdain from his fellow psychiatrists because he rewrote what the relationship between a psychiatrist and patient could be. It did not include spending years talking about the past. Bill did not believe that revisiting the past was useful in solving today’s issue unless there was a direct relationship to the present problem. He said that if you missed dinner you can't eat last night's dinner tonight. All you can do is eat tonight's dinner.

Bill believed in empowering his patients by teaching them a process so that they had a framework to solve their own problems. He called it "Reality Therapy." Now it is called "The Procedures That Lead To Change." Don't be fooled by the titles! If you've heard of or learned Motivational Interviewing or Client Centered Counseling, you've heard of or learned about Bill's ideas from the 1960's.

He also believed, taught and wrote about the harm psycho-tropic drugs have on people long before the acknowledged crisis of prescription drug addiction. Of course he was vilified by big pharma.

Through it all, he held to his principles, to what he saw working as his patients changed and moved forward with their lives.

Although I heard Dr. Glasser in the late sixties, it wasn’t until August 1978 that I began formal training in his concepts.

I was privileged to bear witness to Bill’s continual learning and the evolution of his concept known as Choice Theory, an explanation of how and why we make the choices we do. Because of my experiences in learning directly from Bill Glasser and my own internalization and application of these concepts in my own life, I’ve been able to overcome life challenges that could have knocked me down.

And actually I have been knocked. The saying “down but not out” may be true but if you know these fundamental Glasser Concept ideas you will get back up.

1.     We have 5 Basic Needs that are genetic to us and determine what we individually value above all else in our lives.
2.     Each of those Needs is represented by hundreds if not thousands of life experiences.
3.     Every minute of our day, we strive to replicate or create new highly valued experiences which means we are in control of our lives.
4.     Life happens and how we’ve successfully lived may not work right now or maybe even “any more” which is why we decide to make different choices.
5.     When we understand our Basic Needs profile, we have the Power to focus on a different choice so that we are more likely to succeed. You can learn more about creating a personal problem solving plan here.

In 2004 when I lost some of my cognitive functioning, I was terrified. OMG!!! What was I going to do? I couldn’t drive, could barely be a passenger in a vehicle going over 25 mph; couldn’t be in a busy, noisy place or see the wind making the tree leaves dance. All of that visual and auditory noise literally had me on my knees.

I won’t lie and say I wasn’t afraid aka terrified! However, I did know how to change how I emotionally felt, how to curb the terror. Simple is not always easy. I had to accept total responsibility for how I felt about what was happening in my life in order to be able to feel differently.

The first step was to focus on what I could do that also brought me joy. Was it easy? Actually the focusing on what I could do that also brought me joy was surprisingly easy. However, knowing my Needs Profile was key for me maintaining a positive attitude through months of physical therapy.

Was the road smooth? How I wish. What was and is true is I had a process that I knew worked so at those times when I slipped into the dark hole of “what if I don’t get better,” I knew what to do to move back into the light.

As you know I write books about women facing real life problems who, with the support of their sacred women’s circle, are able to move forward in their lives and find their happily-ever-after. The teaching of Bill Glasser are in each book and are a critical component of my characters’ ability to find a new path. You see in each story how powerful it is when we choose to be part of our solution.

I also write non-fiction based on Choice Theory and The Procedures That Lead to Change. Staying Sane in a Crazy World outlines the power of understanding our Needs Profile and The Procedures That Lead to Change. Readers are provided with a process to determine what they want to change and a format to make a successful plan to do so.

All of my books are available at your favorite e-book vendor. Be sure to ask your local library if you’d prefer to read my books through that resource.

Learn more about Judith's The Sacred Women’s Circle series at JudithAshleyRomance.com

Follow Judith on Twitter: JudithAshley19

Check out Judith’s Windtree Press author page.

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© 2019 Judith Ashley