Read SPIN: A Novelette…on any e-reader you got!

spin cover2 - rgb - cs5

“To regular passersby, the brick façade on Washington Street between 7th and 8th was nothing more than an abandoned host for disgruntled bursts of graffiti, petrified chewing gum, and the benign city smells of urine and cigarette smoke; but to those with desperation and regret hanging in their chests, they saw something different. If the sunlight peeked out behind the clouds just right, like it was doing now, you could see the thin, dotted outline of a doorframe, the glint of a display window, the shutter of a neon sign which proclaimed not just Open, but Come In, too.”

And so it begins. My very first self-published work. Something that I am so fucking proud of that I had to share it with everyone come hell or high water or hours and hours of reformatting for various digital formats.

Now, it’s ready. And I truly hope you’ll read it. It’s a tale reminiscent of those you’d find on The Twilight Zone. It’s a love letter to music and particularly the rockin’ tunes of the 70s. It dabbles, er, goes full throttle into a world where time travel is possible – for those who need it the most. It’s a psychological exploration of regret and the things we’ll do for love.

My truly fabulous and disgustingly talented boyfriend, Bryan Mok, designed the cover, which made me swoon the first moment I saw it.

And this little novelette has been receiving some great reviews:

“If Neil Gaiman and Lovecraft had a love child … well, it’d be mad, but Brown is pretty close. Her prose is gorgeous. Her storyline will keep you stressing and screaming at the characters. Mostly, though, she makes you consider what you would do if you could erase regret. Would you? At what cost? Personally, I think I’ll leave time travel alone.”

“If you’ve got an hour, 99 cents, a seatbelt, and a desire to get your mind blown. READ. THIS. STORY!!!! Smart, stylish, edgy, heart-breaking, provocative, and… Al Green! Quite an accomplishment.”

Thank you in advance if you decide to pick up this little story and add it into your virtual bookcase. I hope you love it!

Download SPIN: A Novelette on Amazon (for Kindles or Kindle apps for PC).

Download SPIN: A Novelette at Barnes & Noble (for Nooks).

Download SPIN: A Novelette on Smashwords (for any other format – PDF, rtf, txt, etc.)

I Don’t Believe in Resolutions

Photo by flickr user "Angle Torres."

Photo by flickr user “Angle Torres.”

Because I think starting a new year trying to “resolve” something is negative in connotation. Now, I do believe in setting goals. And if you do it right, your goals should build on successes or progress you made the previous year. Otherwise, you’re setting yourself up to fail because you’re starting from square one (never a fun place). New goals for a new year should be all about momentum, continuing the GOOD things you’ve already done, taking them to the next level maybe–from a place where you’re already ahead of the pack. Doesn’t that sound so much better than making resolutions?

That all being said, here are my goals for 2015:

1. Get four short stories published–with pay. In 2013, my goal was to publish one story during the year, because it was the first year I started submitting my work publicly. Invidia was published that year. In 2014, I set a goal to publish two pieces, and I’m proud to report that I did publish two–Blood Melody and Give It Back. In 2015, my goal is four, because I already have two pieces accepted and lined up to be published. Two more pieces on top of that seems very realistic but also a bit of a stretch goal. Let’s do this.

2. Be more active. Notice how that goal doesn’t mention anything about a diet or losing weight? This is because I’ve identified that I need the happy endorphins released during exercise more than I need to be a size 2. I had a revelation the other day. I get depressed when I don’t have consistent physical activity in my life. That part I already knew, but the ephiphany was that I’m a little addicted to endorphins, because growing up, I was a competitive dancer. I was naturally doping myself up on an almost daily basis through pirouettes and pas de chats. When I don’t get a hit of endorphins at least two or three times a week, I lose energy, get moody, and past body image insecurities come back to haunt me. For my mental and emotional health in 2015, I need to be very conscious and intentional about exercise. Lucky for me, I found a kickass yoga studio in 2014 and I just purchased a Groupon for bellydance classes a couple weeks ago. I’m ready to stretch and shimmy myself to good health!

3. Read 40 books. I’m a better writer when I’m reading. I get inspired by those who’ve come before me. Sometimes, the writing style of the author I’m reading seeps into my writing, and that’s always an interesting experience that I tend to grow from. Most importantly, I’m exercising my brain. Reading isn’t a passive act. It keeps me sharp and engaged with the storytelling part of my brain. On top of all that, I genuinely enjoy it. When I carve out time for reading, I feel like I’m spoiling myself. In 2015, I deserve to be spoiled. And I’m already planning out my reading list. First up, Sandman: Preludes and Nocturnes by Neil Gaiman, Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick, and The Carnal Prayer Mat by Li Yu.

4. Self publish a collection of short stories…or at least make a lot of headway toward this goal. This is the big one, kids! I’ve had an idea for a collection for over a year now. Recently, I talked to a good friend about it and she gave me some amazing ideas for art and the confidence boost I needed to decide it was about damn time to do this. My collection will need 12 short stories, two of which I have already crafted. So, 10 more stories to go. For this goal, I’m giving myself a little leniency. If I can’t crank out 10 stories that are totally worthy of this project by the end of 2015, I’ll publish in 2016. But I want to be intentional about my work and truly start to focus my creativity into this project. It’s time for a book. And the thought of it makes me happy and excited and ready to work.

Okay, those are my major goals for 2015, a continuation of everything I accomplished in 2014. And I’m not the least bit intimidated. Rather, I’m excited. I’m ready. May this be the Year of the Writer.

What are your goals for 2015?

Photo licensingAngle Torres