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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

My Coma


Greetings World:
I recently awakened from a 10-month coma and am slowly re-entering the world. I can't help but notice that it's in much the same condition as when I went to sleep on February 26, 2013. For 10 months I slept soundly while the world turned without me. Now I'm awake and there is snow everywhere. I seem to recall there was some snow on the ground when I went to sleep. It was cold, for sure--I remember the cold. I slept through spring, summer and fall and awoke on the first day of winter. I had a birthday during my long sleep. I was given flowers for my birthday--there is picture of them on my iPhone for proof. Apparently during my long sleep, I went on Facebook a few times and posted my status--I even wrote a few, random blog posts and posted pictures of cows! I even got married! I didn't know it was possible to do anything at all while in a coma. I must have had talented 'care-givers.' In any case, I am awake now and learning to readjust to life in the waking world. It's not easy.
On Februrary 26 I began 'writing' a fairy tale in which I was the heroine. I wrote and wrote and crafted my perfect prince and went to live with him on a ranch in Texas. It was one heck of a story. We had some adventures that you would not believe! The fairy tale was perfect except for one tiny thing. I forgot the most important part of any fairy tale: the happy ending. And on December 20 I awoke in the most unlikeliest of places: a Texas courthouse. I was on the witness stand being questioned by an attorney and a judge among a roomful of strangers. I saw only one familiar face in the crowd: my number one caregiver, Tom. I probably wouldn't have awakened from the coma without him coaxing me back to 'life.'
I have very distinct memories of what happened to me while I was in the coma. I went places. I met people. I cooked. I baked. I played pool and tennis and ping pong. I went to a rodeo and a fair and a few movies and I even went diamond-hunting in Arkansas. I went to New Mexico and Old Mexico and El Paso and Dallas and Shreveport and Oklahoma. I also went to Seattle and Whidbey Island. I got around! I developed a taste for avocados and tortillas and coffee and blueberry-pecan waffles. I got my religion on and went to a most unusual church. I talked to cows and horses. I bonded with a kitten named Tweaker. I fell four times--three times physically and one time emotionally. The emotional fall was fatal, but like a phoenix, I arose from the ashes. Who says guardian angels aren't real? I believe in them!
I am recuperating in Cleveland, back in the same place where I first became comatose. I'm here till I'm able to travel--to the Pacific Northwest, to a beautiful island I visited in my coma. I felt at home there.
When I awoke from the coma I had three pieces of incontrovertible proof that I didn't imagine the whole thing: 1) An eyewitness. Tom was with me from beginning to end. He saw it all, from the fall that put me in the coma to the moment I awoke in the courthouse. 2) A mind-bending pain in the chest that tells me I'm alive and it was all real and 3) A new last name. That one's hard to explain, but I saw my driver's license so apparently my name is now Kellie Hernandez.
I can't say it's good to be awake. Not yet. But in time, as I get stronger, I'll feel better. I'll be more sociable and talkative. Right now, I'm still trying to adjust and see what I missed while I was asleep. And you can be sure of one thing:
I am writing a memoir about my time in my Texas coma. I'm already 30,000 plus words in. As I write and re-read my writing, I cannot believe some of the things that happened to me during those 10 months. There is not one Hollywood screenwriter sitting in an air-conditioned office on Sunset Boulevard who could write this story. No one could make this stuff up--NO ONE! If you look up the phrase "Truth is Stranger than Fiction" in a book of quotes, you'll see my picture there! I lived quite a life in those 10 months and met some fascinating people. I can't wait until you all have a chance to read my story and see it for yourself. You won't believe it.
I shall close here and wish you all a Happy New Year! I'm looking forward to 2014 but I can't imagine how it could top 2013 for sheer shock value. But you know what? I hope it does because I am ready for some genuine peace and happiness. To find peace and happiness would be highly shocking! Bring it on, 2014!
Until next time!
Kellie Hernandez (according to my new Texas driver's license)

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Memory

                                                                          
I know it's been a while since my last blog entry but this time there is a reason. I just haven't wanted to write. Well, actually, I've been afraid to write. My life is currently going through a swirl of change and it's taking all of my energy and mental capacity to stay focused on matters at hand.
At the moment I am sitting in my home in New Boston, Texas, looking out the window wall at the gorgeous 25 acres of land. The grasses are wild and colorful and I see leaves flying off trees. The sky is pale blue in some places and gray in others. Every so often the sun breaks through the gray and shines on the earth. It's a beautiful sight and I am committing it to memory.
Lately a few of the neighbor's cows have escaped through a break in the fence and have wandered onto our property. I love those crazy cows, especially the calf that walked up the driveway and lounged under the pecan tree. There are several new calves next door and I think they're sweet. I am committing them to memory.
I am sitting on the couch in the living room at the moment. The gorgeous fireplace is in front of me. It has never had a fire in it but it will this winter. The logs on the hearth are still encased in their plastic wrapping, waiting for a day cold enough to light them. As much as I hate to be cold, I hope we get a wintry day soon so I can see a fire in that fireplace. It's a see-through fireplace between the living room and the kitchen and it's going to look magical. I need to see a fire in it. I want to commmit it to memory.
I am thinking of all of the yummy Mexican foods my husband has made for me since I moved to Texas. That man will put anything in a tortilla. Once he made me a bologna burrito. It was good! Who knew? I love the way he puts avocado, cottage cheese and regular cheese on everything, plus a lot of salt and hot sauce and red pepper flakes and spicy seasonings. He makes a dish called entomatillos (I think this is how you spell it) which is nothing more than chopped up corn tortillas fried in a little oil with a couple of small cans of tomato sauce poured over it, some salt and cheese over the top. So good and so easy. I am committing these tastes and smells to memory.
Memory is the process in which information is encoded, stored and retrieved: You receive and process information, then create a permanent record of that information and put it away in the recesses of your subconscious and one day, when you need it, you call it back to your conscious mind and use it as you see fit.
Time and Memory are like a married couple perfectly matched. Time creates Memory while Memory lives on in Time. I am Time. And I am committing Memory to memory.
I apologize for the dark tone of this blog post. I am feeling melancholy and wistful these days but I know (thanks to Time), that this, too, shall pass.
Before I forget, The Shadow King should be out in November. I am rushing to get it out into the world. Time is of the essence and there are many loose ends to tie up in my writing life. I have put aside my Crescent trilogy for the time being because another, more pressing writing project has presented itself to me. It is a memoir with the working title of Fairy Tale (the title will eventually change) and it is about my sojourn in Texas. It begins in Ohio, moves on to Texas and ends in a whole new world. Stay tuned.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Picasso's La Vie (Life)

                                                                             
Time to chat a bit to the world at large. I've been experiencing strange days but I keep remembering a saying I heard a few months back that really helps me keep my wits about me and my perspective on track: "Everything will be alright in the end. If it's not alright...it's not the end." I really believe that. As I mentioned in my last post, I recently experienced a blue period, but unlike Picasso's Blue Period, my blue period did not produce works of art or even words on a computer screen. All it did was make me BLUE. In trying to understand the cause of my blues, I determined it has a lot to do with reality setting in: the reality of living in a new home in a new state with new people and navigating a new life that is so different from the one I left behind. But I have never been afraid of change...of trying something new...of being somewhere else. There is a reason this blog is called Somewhere Else. And in case anyone out there who might be reading this thinks I regret my decision to embark upon a new life with a man I married a mere 13 days after meeting him in person for the first time (after two months of getting to know each other via telephone calls, text messages, emails and words with friends chats), I want you to know, I do not regret my decision. I love my husband and it gives me great joy to be able to type these four words: Oscar: I love you! Happy four-month anniversary today!

So.....The Dark Prince is out. I have submitted my Gypsy treatment to some Hollywood producers and I am preparing to bring The Shadow King into the world. I cannot wait to reveal the cover. It's gorgeous and very dramatic. You'll see Andrew on the cover. It's not quite ready but I expect it will be in the next few days. I am very excited! If you've been reading my trilogy, please message me and let me know what you think about Laura's journey so far. And let me know which boy you love and want Laura to be with. I suspect you'll all pick Miguel, but don't count Andrew out! He has surprises in store.

I shall close here but before I do, I want to wish Rina a happy birthday! She's my grandbaby's mom. And I will leave you with this awesome quote supposedly uttered by a man named Patrick Overton (I don't know who he is):

"When you come to the edge of all the light you know and are about to step off into the darkness of the unknown, faith is knowing one of two things will happen: there will be something solid to stand on or you will be taught how to fly."

Love that! Until next time!

KH


Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Bulls, Blues and Roses



The Dark Prince is officially out in the world! It's available via all channels (paperback, Barnes and Noble's Nook, Smashwords, Apple's iPads/phones and Kindle). Get your copy today! Laura's story shifts from her home in Rhode Island in The Gypsy Thief where she met Andrew Easton and Miguel Dos Santos and found that pesky golden talisman that changed her life so profoundly to England where meany author puts her through a lot of torment and hell. I don't want to give anything away but if  you read TGT, you must continue Laura's story as it leads to book three (and my personal favorite of the three): The Shadow King. I am already preparing TSK for an early release because TDP was delayed for so long. I want these babies out in the world so I can concentrate on my Crescent saga and two other projects that I need to complete quickly.
All is well here on the Hernandez ranch though I will admit to experiencing a slight blue period recently. But a gorgeous bunch of white roses and encouraging words from elduck123 helped smooth over my blues. Into every life a little rain must fall...such is the nature of being human.
Last night the five of us (Oscar, Libby, Tom, Abe and I) played tennis. It was fun and I learned a few things about us: We're game to try anything; I'm pretty good at serving though there seemed to be a giant hole in my racquet when the ball would come my way (must get that racquet fixed); Abe should become a spokesman for Gatorade and my husband is a VERY good tennis player. As a matter of fact, I have noticed that Oscar is good at everything he does (some people are lucky like that). We will continue our tennis careers tomorrow night when we head back to the courts to play more (my racquet should be 'fixed' by then). And then our next venture will be family bowling night (I suspect Oscar will he good at that, too!).
I went for a walk at twilight night before last and had a spooky encounter with two large bulls. They were on either side of the road (on the other side of their respective fences--thank goodness!) and I was walking between them. Well...they were not happy to see me. They came up to their fences and mooed (or whatever that awful noise was coming out of their mouths) and snorted and pawed at the ground and really let me have it. I think one of them even breathed fire. I guess they thought I was a threat--dumb bulls. Don't they know I root for them in bullfights? Seriously, dudes!!! I'm on your side! If not for barbed wire I would been have a kellie quesadilla on bull tortillas.
I shall close here and rotate the laundry then delve into the world of The Shadow King (you must stick with me and my Talisman Trilogy for the surprises and twists that are coming in book three). Until next time...

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Meet Tweaker




I know, I know, I did it again--or didn't, as the case may be. Didn't get around to blogging. You'd think I'd learn to be more diligent. But here I am with a new blog post.
First, some housekeeping items:
I don't know if any of you have ever tried to leave a comment on my blog post and were unable to do so. I am hoping that I figured out the problem and have it corrected now. Please, please, please, I implore anyone who reads this, to please try to leave a comment so I can see if the problem has been resolved. Thank you!
"The Dark Prince" is finally here! The first round of publishing produced a paperback with an error on the back cover (a missing word). My friend Dana told me not to worry and just to think of it as a special edition. Good outlook, Dana. I did, however, get the error fixed and the corrected version should be available on Amazon tomorrow. "The Dark Prince" is available via all channels: Paperback from Amazon, on the Kindle, at Smashwords, on Barnes and Noble's Nook and via the Apple store. If you read "The Gypsy Thief" you need to read "The Dark Prince" to see how Laura's story is unfolding.
"The Shadow King" is now in the editing phase. I had to make some changes to the storyline in the name of authenticity regarding some medical procedures that come up in the book. Though it is a work of fiction, I do want to be accurate when writing about medical procedures and timelines. I am also in the process of finding the cover boy: Andrew. He is a gorgeous, blue-eyed, blond teen. Anybody out there know anyone who fits the bill? Let me know. In any case, the search continues.
Meanwhile...in Texas...
All is well on the Hernandez ranch. Oscar is busy with his business and works long hours. We have fun though when he's not working. We recently went to Hot Springs, Arkansas, for a weekend. What a cool place. We had a couples massage and enjoyed a fabulous steak dinner afterward.
This past weekend we went to Dallas to get Tom from the airport. He'd been in Cleveland and Las Vegas with his dad for a couple of weeks. I'm glad to have my boy home. I'm just not  myself when he's away.
We have a new member in the family: Tweaker. My step-daughter, Libby, brought home this little bundle of fur--a cute, gray and off-white striped kitten (a boy). He is meant to be an outdoor cat but at the moment he thinks I'm his mother and he sticks to me like glue. He's gonna have to get used to being an outdoorsmen soon though--as soon as he is old enough and big enough to defend himself against the creatures outside.
I recently attended my first Texas rodeo. It was fun (even the clowns weren't too awful--everyone who knows me knows I have a fear of clowns). We saw cowboys riding bulls, roping calves and cowgirls barrel racing and little pre-school kids riding sheep. It was quite a cool way to spend a Friday evening. I will admit to rooting for the bulls.
This Saturday morning I am traveling to Tyler, Texas, to attend a meeting of the East Texas Chapter of the Romance Writers of America. I'm looking forward to the drive and the opportunity to meet fellow authors.
My book "Crescent Summer" is currently under consideration with a major publisher. Fingers crossed.
I hope you all will read this blog post, leave a comment so I can know it works and get yourselves a copy of "The Dark Prince," which reminds me:
I am submitting the movie treatment for "The Gypsy Thief" at the end of this month. Again--fingers crossed.
More later...
KH

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Imagine that...




Greetings:

Dark Prince update: It is in the hands of the publishers and HOPEFULLY, it will come back to me in perfect proof form. Time will tell. I expect to get the proof within the next week or so. If it passes muster, I will hit the publish key and it will be available in paperback. A few days after that it will be available on Kindle. Shortly thereafter it will be available via all other channels, i.e., Nook, iPad, Galaxy and other ereaders, I'll let you know.
Shadow King update: Once Prince goes live, I can concentrate on The Shadow King. I have two scenes to rewrite and in the meantime, my cover designer Jennifer, will be hard at work creating a beautiful cover which will feature the prince on it. Can't wait to see who we find to become Andrew Easton.
Crescent Summer update: Crescent Summer is the first book of my new trilogy. I am currently making the rounds with agents/publishers which means a lot of hurry up and wait.
The Gypsy Thief update: The screenplay treatment is complete. As soon as Prince is available, I will send the treatment and a copy of Prince to producers in Hollywood. Then it's more hurry up and wait.
     And now onto a completely different topic...I imagined a conversation between two people I knew back in Shaker Heights and what they might say if they know about the recent changes in my life. These are two people who used to be friends of mine and the conversation went something like this:
P#1: OMG! Did you hear what your friend Kellie Tayer did?
P#2: Oh, gawd. What's she done now? Remarried her ex?
P#1: HAHAHAHAHA!!!!! No! Even better! She met some Hispanic guy on the Internet and ran off to Mexico and married him!
P#2: Oh, gawd! No way! I mean, she's crazy but nobody's that crazy.
P#1: Oh, it's true. I heard it from A who heard it from B when he overheard a conversation between C and D. Then E confirmed it. It's totally true. I bet she's pregnant and he took all her money. I heard they live in a trailer in the middle of nowhere and he beats her. And they have no electricity or running water.
P#2: Awesome. I bet she loves it!
P#1: I know, right? She probably orchestrated the whole thing for research for a book she's writing. Ever since she read "Fifty Shades of Grey" she's been different. I heard it affects everyone differently.
P#2: That's true. I read it and now I have an account at Ambience.
P#1: Really? I read it but I didn't get it. Where I come from, that kind of, shall we say, activity, can get a gal stoned.
P#2: Ooh, kinky. So Kellie doesn't live in Shaker anymore? She didn't even say good-bye. What a bee-otch. I always hated her. She always acted so goody-goody.
P#1: She had some weird habits, that's for sure. I mean, seriously...who eats that much ketchup in one sitting?
P#2: And her clothes! Blah! And her fingernails were always too short! So were her pants! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA. I would hate to be her! And now she's thrown her life away for an Internet fling. Wow. I always knew she'd go off the deep end. I'm so glad I'm normal.
P#1: Amen to that. I've gotta go. My family's trying to have me committed and I need to get to my sanity hearing. See ya later.
P#2: OK. I've gotta get home anyway. The...uh...plumber...is coming over to service my pipes. He's very expensive and I want to make sure to get my money's worth. If you hear any good gossip about Kellie, make sure you call me.
P#1: I will. And if I don't hear anything, we can still get together and make stuff up.
P#2: Sounds good. Bye.
P#1: Bye.

On that note...I shall close here. My trailer is tipping and I need to find some rocks to prop it up. I also need to go to the well to get water for bathing. And if I have time, I'm gonna rub some sticks together to make fire. I also need to let out the hems from my pants and buff my nails. I'm craving ketchup--pregnancy will do that to you. Until next time.
Laters, baby

P.S. We have electricity and running water and we don't live in a trailer (though sometimes Oscar pulls one with his truck). I do love ketchup and once ate a whole bottle of it. I am not pregnant and my pants are plenty long enough. Oh, and I have beautiful nails. Teehee. Adios..........



Friday, July 5, 2013

Mornings





Thought I should blog a little in the other blog.
     It's Friday morning and there's not a cloud in the sky. It's eerily quiet--even the frogs and birds are silent. When I awakened at 6:30, I glanced out the bedroom window and saw the early morning mist hovering over the land. It was surreal. What made it even more mystical was the sight of the neighbor's black angus cows standing in the field near the fence--close enough to the house that I could make out their mouths chewing grass and their tails swishing gently. They looked huge and hulking in the mist--their dark forms like shadows in the dawning light. It was quite a beautiful sight. I've gotten used to the cows--even befriended a few. When I walk along the fence, they like to charge at me, their hooves beating the earth in their haste to get as close to me as the fence will allow. I don't know if it's because they're happy to see me--maybe they like my company--or if they think I can save them from some unknown fate (Wendy's, anyone?). Or perhaps they're thinking I'd be a tasty treat (I have never considered what a cow would do to a human if given the chance other than stomp the daylights out of us, but, heck, if we can eat them, why can't they eat us?). In any case, I've developed a fondness for the creatures--especially the black ones. What I'm not crazy about are the nasty vultures that like to circle over the land--over the cows--waiting...watching...hoping for a chance to swoop in and feast on whatever they can sink their beaks and claws into--ugly buggers those vultures. They like to swing by over my head, too, when I'm out walking. I know they're waiting for me to croak so they can chow down, but quite frankly, I'd rather be eaten by the cows.
     Two or three times a month we have to go to Dallas for supplies (carpeting and flooring supplies). It's looking like we're heading there tomorrow. I'm excited for Tom to go this time. He loves big cities and tall buildings and Dallas is full of big stuff. The mall is MASSIVE. and so is IKEA. I'm sure we'll stop at IKEA for a look around--we usually do. Tom needs a wardrobe for his room and he'll finally be all set. He seems to be settling into his Texas life nicely. He was homesick at first--as I knew he would be--but now he loves it here. He spends a lot of time walking the land and tanning. We got Oscar a metal detector for Father's Day and as soon as I get batteries in the thing, Tom intends to walk the land and find treasures. Oscar has been teaching him some skills like how to tile a shower and he's been doing a great job, making up the pattern as he goes along. He's also painted a house in Texarkana and done some gardening here. I'm sure at some point he will learn to mow on a tractor, but I'm not ready for that yet! It thrills me to see how he is taking to helping us put the finishing touches on the house. He takes pride in his work and is psyched at the thought of animals coming to live with us--just wait till I get my own cow! I'm going to name her Trixie and hope she's a milk cow and not a cheeseburger cow.
I shall close here. Time to get a shower and get ready to head to Texarkana--also known as 'town.' Tom's got a package waiting to be picked up at the post office there. He'll probably sweet-talk me into taking him to Ashdown for some barbecue--either that or go to Slim Chickens, his new favorite fast food joint. So, we shall be off. Until next time.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Home at Last



Home sweet home...

I am officially a Texas girl! Oscar and I have been married a month now and every moment has been one of pure bliss. I literally have to pinch myself to make sure I'm not dreaming. I'm realistic enough to know that there will be bumps in the road ahead and challenges to face, but at the moment, life is a fairy tale. I've said recently that I could very well be laid up in the Cleveland Clinic in a deep coma, dreaming this whole new life. Well, if that is the case and the doctors should pull me out of it, please--someone--anyone--knock me out and put me back under cuz I don't want to wake up from this idyll.

My new home is a house made of metal situated on 25 acres of stunning property. Every evening, as we sit at the kitchen table and gaze out the west window wall of the house, our view is of the moon just above the tree line (these past few nights it's been my favorite kind of moon--a crescent moon). To the right of the moon there is a very bright planet and as the sky darkens and the stars come out, I am stunned at the sight. I can see constellations in bright, glorious clarity. It's like a movie.

I've been spending my first days in my new life taking on my new identity as Kellie Hernandez--applying for a new social security card so I can get my new driver's license, car registration and passport. It's a lot of driving but it's forcing me to learn my way around Texarkana (which is referred to as 'town'). I've also been shopping for household items. Our home is new (Oscar, Libby and Abraham just moved in at the end of March) and I'm having fun outfitting it with shelves (Oscar is an IKEA fan-yay!), small appliances, kitchen gadgets, linens, etc. Oscar has exquisite decorating taste and as such, each room is stunning--the paint colors, the floors (the kitchen floor is to die for), the countertops (you have to see them to believe them), the art on the walls--everything is beautiful. Martha Stewart would be impressed--maybe even a little jealous! Every day I walk through the house and admire the beauty of it and I am thankful to be here. I will never take for granted this life.

My baby is coming to stay next Monday. I cannot wait for Tom to get here. I miss my boy! I'm excited for him to see his new life. It will take time to adapt from city life to country life and I hope it will be as seamless for Tom as it has been for me. I can honestly say that there is no doubt I was meant to be here--in this house, in Texas, married to Oscar (the dreamiest man on the face of the earth) and living this life. I just hope it will be easy for Tom, too. I think it will be. Oscar's family is so warm and welcoming and inclusive and Tom is such an easy-going guy--always willing to try something new--I think he'll be fine here in Texas.

I should mention The Dark Prince. My latest proof should arrive today via UPS. I want to have the book out within a month so I can begin promoting it and preparing The Shadow King for publication. I am well aware of the fact that I have been a naughty writer these past couple of months because my personal life took center stage and pushed my work to the back burner. But it's time to get cracking and back to work. I have much to do--books to edit, finish, and new ones to write. I can't wait to see how my new life will affect my writing life because it will--in a big way.

I will close here for now with these parting words: Life can turn on a dime. Mine turned on a cold winter night when I was lying in bed tucked under my blankets, playing Words With Friends with a stranger named elduck123. You never know where the day will take you or what seemingly innocent action (like clicking the random opponent key on WWF) will change your life. So be on the lookout for your moment. It's coming. It'll probably be in disguise as something ordinary or routine--even banal. But don't dismiss the little things cuz that's where the beauty of life is--in the little, innocent, subtle moments that most people overlook. For me, it was simply tapping the word random on my phone. But then again, Random is my middle name. Until next time...

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

I See the Signs


Greetings:
My first blog as Kellie Hernandez. I love my new name...and my new family. Oscar's kids welcomed me warmly and made me feel right at home. But I have to tell you about my arrival at the Texarkana airport. It was quite something.
The Texarkana airport is very small--only one gate! I entered the terminal and went straight to the restroom to freshen up. Unbeknownst to me, Oscar and his family (and everyone else paying attention) saw me enter the restroom. I only hope they didn't see me exit, pulling my suitcase along the floor wheels side up! I gave the TSA agent a chuckle at that slick maneuver. I walked into a spectacle...people standing around...watching...waiting...because...
Oscar had planned a little surprise. Suddenly I saw signs--literally. Signs reading KELLIE...WILL YOU...MARRY ME? I realized his kids were the ones holding the signs. At first I didn't see his daughter-in-law with the camera, taking photos. Then Oscar emerged with a bouquet of roses in my favorite color--purple. He gave me a hug, then dropped on bended knee, and with jewelry box in hand, he proposed (officially). Naturally I said yes. And then I heard the onlookers' reaction of approval. It was something else...but then again...Oscar is something else.
We married the next day in Arkansas. I wore a cream-colored, knee-length Ralph Lauren dress and Oscar wore a suit. As soon as the vows were spoken and the first kiss as husband and wife was complete (sorry, kids...that was probably awkward! hahaha!!!), we changed back into comfy clothes and went to lunch. We had fun and I felt a sense of belonging instantly. Needless to say, my first 24 hours in Texas were a blur.
I'm back in Ohio now, away from my husband for the next week and the separation sucks. But Tom-Tom isn't finished with school yet. As soon as he finishes, we'll be in Texas permanently. Once I get settled there my blog is going to change. I want to chronicle my new life--going from city girl to country girl--and take you all along with me as Tom and I adapt and embrace Texas and our new home. It's bound to be dramatic...and funny...and random...because no matter where I go or what I do...random always seems to find me. Until next time!

Friday, May 3, 2013

Tennessee


I'm back! Time to ramble a bit.
So...I just returned Thursday from spending a week in Tennessee. The last half of my trip I spent visiting my sisters in Savannah. We had a good time--played lots of games--Yahtzee, Scrabble and various card games--and visited and acted goofy. One afternoon while out for a walk, I was nearly attacked by a vicious dog. But thanks to learning kickboxing from my personal trainer, Jonathan, I was able to kick the dog in the face with a roundhouse, left-legged kick and that--coupled with my growling at him--caused him to back off. I usually panic in emergencies but somehow I instinctively knew that panicking would turn me into the dog's dinner. Score one, Kellie!
The first half of my Tennessee trip was spent with Oscar in Nashville. Remember my mentioning that I won an Oscar? Well, obviously I didn't win an Academy Award but rather something much more important and significant. I've been alluding to something going on in my personal life lately and over time I have revealed tidbits of information about Oscar. I will reveal a few more now.
In February I had the privilege of making the acquaintance of Oscar Hernandez in the most unusual of ways. We were randomly selected by the universe to be opponents in Words With Friends. We were evenly matched in the game and we were playing in real time. Before too long I was so enjoying the game that I felt compelled to comment on the excitement of it and to introduce myself in the chatbox. At that moment, unbeknownst to me, Oscar snapped a shot of the screen. He didn't tell me until several weeks later that he had photographed the screen at that moment because he sensed that something significant was happening and he wanted to preserve the moment. He couldn't have been more right. Something significant did happen. We talked on the phone that night for the first time and we haven't missed a day of talking since--except for one. We decided to have no phone contact the day before meeting for the first time (his idea actually--not mine--lol). We have taken many weeks to peel back the layers of each other's lives from childhood on so that when we met for the first time, a foundation was already in place on which to build a new life together.
Oscar is an amazing human being. I've never met a single soul on this earth like him. Never once have I ever heard him say an unkind word about anyone. He is humble, hardworking, compassionate, generous, kind...I could go on and on. (Full disclosure alert: he's also gorgeous!). We love each other very much. I'll stop here and save the rest of this story for another blog post. But first:
An interesting twist to this story...many of you know that I currently have four published novels in the world. (see my website www.kelliebtayer.com). In each of my books, the girl ends up with the man of her dreams (well, not exactly in The Gypsy Thief--but she will eventually) and in each book, the guy is of Latino descent. How ironic that Oscar is from Mexico. Figure the odds! It seems I have written my own fairy tale, brought it to life with me as the main character and Oscar as the hero. Now that takes talent, folks! LOL. Until next time!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Blossoming


I finally see leaves budding on the trees. It seems late for the season considering spring started a month ago. But I'll take what I can get. I am a heat-seeker--I need the sun (well, I am a Sagittarius after all--a fire sign!!!)!
I wish I had something new to report regarding The Dark Prince. Currently it's in the hands of Amazon, going through the publication process. I will be receiving my physical copy sometime in the next two weeks. I've already seen the electronic version and, unfortunately, I found some issues with it that need fixing--these things happen!
The Gypsy Thief has been getting some blog exposure lately which is great. I want to get the word out about it everywhere, especially in light of The Dark Prince's imminent birth. Once The Dark Prince is out in the world, I will then turn my attention to The Shadow King. I need to do a couple of small rewrites and then my cover designer and I will search for the boy who will be the prince featured on the cover. He is a blue-eyed blond and, of course, gorgeous!
I really feel like I'm on a roll these days. I've never been happier and I've never felt better. I've recently lost 21 lbs which means only 19 more to go to get to my goal. Then I want to train to run a half-marathon. Running a marathon is something I've had on my bucket list for a while. I only hope it isn't the thing that makes me kick the bucket. Now wouldn't that be ironic????
Tomorrow I'm going on a 10-mile urban hike. It'll be my third one in two weeks. I enjoy the walk very much--I see things I would never see in my car--small details like the Psychic Reader Shop and other unusual businesses along Mayfield Road. My friend, Laura, is coming with me. We'll have three hours of girl talk and trying to ignore the fatigue and aches that set in about mile seven-hahaha!
I shall close here but I can't leave without commenting on my countdown.
It's nearing its end...only three and a half more days until I take a trip to Nashville. My sisters live a couple of hours outside of Nashville and I will be going down to see them for a few days but first the weekend is mine. Or ours I should say. Of course I am excited and anxious. It's one of those moments in a lifetime that I daresay few people get to experience--at least, not quite like this. I can honestly say that not much about my life has been conventional. I've always done things out of order and random always seems to find me. But this time, it's different. Because this time, I'm allowing myself to believe that this is not an act of randomness that has happened to me. This is a divine intervention...a carefully thought-out plan by the Ruler of the Universe. I have been given an extraordinary gift and as much as I would like to share the details with the world (even those of you who know what I'm talking about don't know it all) I must wait a little longer so you all bear with me. Until next time...

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Countdown...



Hello World:
I'm past due for a blog post. Today I feel like an astronaut, which is cool because I've always loved everything about outerspace and the sky in general. Last night there was a crescent moon hanging above the house. I always thought full moons were my favorite, but I think I prefer crescent moons. They look delicate and mysterious. Of course, my new trilogy is called The Crescent Saga, so that might have something to do with it. But...getting back to astronaut mode. Outside of the obvious (walking on the moon, the concept of going to the bathroom in space, weightlessness, etc.), what's one more thing closely associated with going to the moon? I'll tell you:
THE COUNTDOWN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Today I'm all about the countdown. 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1...!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Have you ever felt like you've waited your whole life for just one moment? Reminds me of one of my favorite songs, "Forever," by Chris Brown. If you haven't heard it, YouTube it. The signature line in the song is "It's like I waited my whole life for this one night...it's gonna be me, you and the dance floor...double your pleasure, double your fun." And the whole song is about being above the earth anyway...flying high (on love, not drugs! hahaha). But I keep digressing...getting back to the countdown...
It feels like I've waited an awfully long time for what lies ahead...a new beginning...a new family...a new life...but mostly...love...in its truest, purest form (and no, I'm not trading in my old family for a new one--they're coming along on this ride, too). And herein lies the countdown...10 more days until I am officially awarded my Oscar. Everyone should be so lucky as to win an Oscar. But you'll have to get your own because this one is mine. I won't be placing this Oscar on a fireplace mantle for people to admire (though there is much to admire). Nope...I'm gonna hold Oscar A LOT and continually read the inscription engraved upon him...words that change and adapt to the situations of any given day, but ultimately have the same meaning..."Yo soy tuyo y tú eres mío."
So today the countdown is on...10 more days...diez días más hasta el comienzo de una nueva vida llena de amor y felicidad.
Until next time...



 

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Shot Through the Heart


Greetings:
I'm staring out the living room window at the deceptively beautiful day. The sun is shining and the skies are filled with white, fluffy, cumulus clouds. It looks like spring except for the bare trees. But...it is belowing freezing out there--30 degrees more or less. I do think I can finally see the hint of growth on the tree limbs though, so soon we'll have warmth and leaves. I'm hoping for warmer weather this weekend so I can go on an urban hike--my Ingleside Road to Golden Gate Plaza 10-mile hike. I'm itching to put on my hiking boots and take them on a long haul. It's urban alright--sidewalks all the way through Shaker Heights, University Heights, South Euclid, Lyndhurst and Mayfield Heights. I've walked this route before and I quite enjoy it. At the destination there is a Half-Price Books store waiting for me to peruse the shelves, looking for treasures--my reward for walking 10 miles to get there (like I need another book, right??? I DO, I DO). In case you're wondering if I plan to walk the 10 miles home making it a 20-miler...nope. I think 10 will suffice. I'll call someone for a pick-up.
In my Gypsy life, I don't have any real updates. Regarding the script for The Gypsy Thief, I have opted to write a treatment instead, per my instructor's advice. He said a novelist adapting her own book to screenplay is like a lawyer representing himself in court or a doctor treating himself for an illness--apparently it isn't a good idea. That's not to say I won't do it anyway, but for now, I am preparing a treatment for The Gypsy Thief to be submitted to producers. I'll keep you posted on how it goes. The Dark Prince is scheduled for release in May. In the next week or two I will see it for the first time in actual book form. I know I will feel exactly the same way I felt when I held Gypsy for the first time--like I'm holding my newborn baby--oh, what a feeling. And then this summer I will experience it all again when The Shadow King is born. My babies are growing up! LOL!
In my other life--my real life--I have never been happier. I'm on a lucky streak, no doubt, and I just want it to continue forever. It's very hard to keep your feet planted on terra firma when your head's in the clouds. I'm in a continual state of giddiness these days and I'm wondering if I've contracted a killer case of Adult ADHD. I sure as heck hope so! As much as I'd like to elaborate on this subject, I must wait a bit, but for sure when the time comes I will be more forthcoming with information. I've often found it incredibly ironic that I am a romance writer whose only connection to romance is what I dream up and write in my books (and also read in the books written by others), not to mention the romance I see in movies and on TV shows. Imagine! A romance writer who's not in love! The horrors. A pilot without a plane--sad! A gourmet chef with no Sashimi knife--say it isn't so! A limo without a chauffeur! forgeddaboutit! A puppy without a tail--now that's just messed up! But evereything's different now. For those of you not in love at the moment, who maybe have forgotten what it feels like and looks like to be in love...hang in there...and call me...we'll do lunch and you can see it firsthand...cuz I'm Exhibit A. I'll stop here before I make you ill. Until next time...

Friday, March 29, 2013

Rebirth and Open Hearts

 
 
 
 

Spring...finally. I awoke to the sounds of birds singing this morning and sunshine peeking around the edges of the curtains above my bed...about time! I even went for a long walk in my 'hood and listened to my iPod. I am currently loving indie rock--the Black Keys, Kings of Leon, the Killers, Muse (OF COURSE!), Coldplay, Arcade Fire, Radiohead, Florence and the Machine, Mumford and Sons, etc. (I think most of those are considered indie rock anyway). I also love that song "Thriftshop." It is impossible to be still when that song is on. I find myself tiring of Taylor Swift (though I love her "Speak Now" album and always will). She is overplayed on the radio. And Maroon 5/Adam Levine, whom I used not to care for, I suddenly cannot get enough of. I guess my musical tastes are evolving. Had I been writing a blog post about music three or so years ago, I'd have been talking about nothing but opera and showtunes. How I've changed...speaking of which...
I am going through a rebirth of sorts and the timing is great considering spring is when the earth goes through its own rebirthing process. I started a health/fitness kick on the first of March and I am proud to say that as this first month nears the end, I have not had one, single, off-day in my quest to improve my health! And people are starting to notice which does wonders for my self-esteem. I can fit into clothes which, six months ago, would have been a joke to even try on. I'm using an app on my phone called Lose It!  My friend Jessica told me about it and it is amazing. I highly recommend it to all of you out there who might be wanting to lose weight and/or shape up. The app tracks everything for you. It's easy to use and very motivational. Give it a try! I am also an exercise fiend. I spend a lot of time at the gym and, of course, I have Jonathan, my trainer, whom I've mentioned on this blog before. I actually want to run a half-marathon eventually (it's on my bucket list) and I feel myself getting closer and closer to making that happen. I have only experienced a runner's high one time in my life and that was when I was in the Marine Corps. I want to experience that sensation again--there's nothing like it...almost...which brings me to...
Another part of my rebirth has to do with matters of the heart. There's no way I can blog and not mention, even in the abstract, my happiness these days with a certain someone. Open, Sweet, Caring, Amazing, Romantic (yes, those adjectives are capitalized for a reason -- I like acronyms). You truly never know where or when love will find you, which makes me think of those corny Jane Seymour jewelry collection advertisements where she's pitching her "Open Hearts" collection. I used to make fun of those ads! But...it turns out she's right when she says that if you leave your heart open, love will find its way in. Who knew Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman, was such a romantic! On that note, I shall sign off here. Happy spring, everyone, and remember...the best way to find something that eludes you is to just stop looking! Until next time...

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Weights and Wonders


Another Sunday evening, another blog post (yay! I'm just thrilled I remembered to blog!):
I've been on a roll lately with meeting new people and making new friends. I have become a semi-permanent fixture at the gym and as such, I've gotten to know each of the guys who works there. They're all terrific (and the gals are, too) but one among them has become my personal trainer. His name's Jonathan and, like me, he is a former Marine. Unlike me, however, you can still see the Marine in him! But we are working together to change that. He looks like a bad-ass, kill you with the flick of his pinkie finger dude, but underneath his tough exterior, I've found the pussycat that lives inside. That being said, he doesn't pull any punches during our sessions. He makes it burn. I always feel nervous just before we begin, but when it's over, I feel exhiliarated. I am his pet project and he has promised me results. I also take his kick-boxing class on Thursday nights. It's so freaking hard that sometimes I taste death, but...as Jonathan says..."pain is weakness leaving the body." He's very motivating and also very protective. I love that guy!
I'm thrilled that one of my favorite shows returns tomorrow: "Revolution." Any of you guys fans of that show? I love Billy Burke--he's the star of the show (he's also Bella's father in the Twilight films). Three of my fave shows are on Monday nights ("Dancing with the Stars," "The Carrie Diaries" and "Revolution"). Thank goodness for DVR. I also love "Arrow" which comes on Wednesday nights. I just realized why I love these shows...they all feature HOT GUYS. Speaking of which...
I recently mentioned in a blog post that there's this guy who lives in my phone and he sounds like Antonio Banderas (only better). I'm thinking about him tonight as he's hard at work putting the finishing touches on his new home that he's building on 25 acres of land down in Texas. I'm thinking about how tired he is and how ready he is to get the house finished so he can move in and finally get to enjoy the fruits of his labors. I'm hoping he's drinking lots of water and eating properly and sleeping well at night (because he brings out my nurturing, protective side). You might not think that a man who lives inside an iPhone needs nurturing and protecting--as long as he has a charger and an outlet, he should be good to go, right? But this man needs it (whether he cares to admit it nor not). So, from a distance, I am sending care and protection. As I told him recently, he is now under the protection of my secret service. Though I've only known him a short time, I seriously cannot remember my life before he came into it. He truly is amazing. Which reminds me...
Ever wish you could win an Academy Award? Did you ever make a statuette out of foil and hold it up and thank all the little people? Did you give your acceptance speech and bow and fake cry and thank your lawyer? I'm asking this because I always wished I could win an Oscar. Well, folks...sometimes wishes come true. I finally got my Oscar.
Until next time... 

Thursday, March 21, 2013

health (s)care


I dodged a bullet today! I had a little health scare but, thankfully, all is well. I had my annual mammogram on Tuesday and received a message that something suspicious was noted on the right side. So...I called and was given an appointment for this morning at the Cleveland Clinic. I went in and had further testing done and the doctor recommended a biopsy to be performed the same day (of course, that didn't sound promising). So I went in for the procedure where more x-rays were taken. I was on the table in the ready position for the biopsy (and shaking a wee bit from nerves because I have a serious fear of needles) when the doctor determined that what we were all seeing in the films was calcification near the skin and nothing at all to worry about. So...no needles for Kellie today! YAY! I just have to go back in six months for a follow-up. Needless to say, I am a happy chick today. Of course, I had a few hours of worst-case scenarios running through my over-active imagination. I like to believe I am a very positive, optimistic, glass half-full person, but I do have my little fatalistic streak.I'm the one who, upon experiencing turbulence in-flight, thinks to herself--DUMMY!YOU KNOW YOU HAVE A FASCINATION WITH AIRPLANE CRASHES SO WHAT THE HECK DO YOU THINK'S GONNA HAPPEN ON THIS TURBULENT FLIGHT? ARE YOU TEMPTING FATE? ARE YOU TOYING WITH THE UNIVERSE? ARE YOU NUTS? YOU COULDN'T DRIVE?
Sorry, I probably didn't need to yell that. I don't visibly react to turbulence on a flight but, once I did take my son's hand and say good-bye when we hit a particularly rough patch from Seattle to Cleveland. He just looked at me like I was crazy. When the turbulence was over and all was well, I had the presence of mind to say hello to him. That confirmed my craziness.
So listen up, ladies! It's all about early detection! Schedule a mammogram today if your're older than 40 and/or have a family history. Your loved ones will thank and you'll certainly thank yourself. I know I did!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Spring!



The calendar says it's spring but Mother Nature says HAHAHAHAHA--NOT YET! It's freezing outside! But the sun is shining so that's a step in the right direction.
Lots of things brewing here in Gypsy Land. My new website has launched and now I have to learn how to manage it. Oh, boy. It looks pretty but there are a few things about it that I find odd. I'll figure it out somehow.
I'm currently writing the outline that will become the screenplay for The Gypsy Thief. It's daunting and I am waaaay behind schedule because I keep getting distracted by this beautiful creature who lives in my phone. Yes, it's true...my iPhone is alive and well. Turns out there's a living, breathing man living in it. He's with me everyday, keeping me company, encouraging me and making me happy. Now, I've heard of people getting addicted to their iPhones, but I'm quite sure I've taken the concept to a new level. The thing is...the voice in my phone belongs to an actual human. One of these days I'm going to meet this guy, but until that day...I'm loving my new best friend in its electronic form (and his human form, too). Don't think I mentioned this part: The man in my phone...? He sounds just like Antonio Banderas. I've always wanted my own Latin Lover (it is, after all, the name of my first book!)!
The Dark Prince is in the publishing phase now. I have seen the opening pages and the interior elements look just like Gypsy's. It's quite beautiful. I can't wait for you all to read it. The pub date is still set for some time in May (probably early in the month). I'll keep you posted.
I shall close here. I am going to enter The Gypsy Thief in a contest and I need to print out the entry form but, OF COURSE, my printer won't allow me to print, so it's off to the library I go.
Happy spring, everyone...get caught reading!!!!!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

The Dark Prince and Other Treasures



Another long period of time between blog posts but I'm back again and promising myself to be a more prolific blogger. Here's an update from my world:

I continue to promote The Gypsy Thief. I was recently in contact with a Hollywood agent who represents the actor Graham Rogers who plays Danny on Revolution on NBC (think Andrew Easton in the book). He advised to me adapt The Gypsy Thief into a screenplay so I ordered the special software called FinalDraft and now I have to learn how to use it. I've been reading a book about screenwriting and it sure is different from novel writing.

My new website is almost ready to launch. I saw it for the first time yesterday. It needs a little more fine-tuning before it comes out into the world. It should be very soon.

The Dark Prince will be released in May. The cover is beautiful. It features Miguel, the gypsy, and he looks a lot like Jacob Black aka Taylor Lautner, but it's actually a model. He is gorgeous!

Before I go, I have to say something about a significant occurrence in my life. But first I must ask a question. Have you ever wanted something so much that you actually conjured it up...as in...you actually made it happen? Like...you took something fictional (say, a character in a book that you were madly in love with) and MADE HIM EXIST FOR REAL?????? Well, Kellie here apparently has magical powers because I did it. I made a boy in a book become real (only this one is a man and he is age-appropriate--thank goodness!!). The book is called Perfect Chemistry and the character is Alejandro Fuentes. It's by Simone Elkeles and it's my favorite book of all time. As for the non-fictional Alex....he has a different name and he is pretty awesome (he is also the same nationality as Alex). I'm gonna save him for another blog. It's still early stages and I don't want to overstate the relationship but I've gotta say...who knew the real thing could be as good as the fictional thing? Needless to say, I'm kinda in a state of constant rapture. I'll leave it at that for now...hasta mas tarde...

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Self-questioning


Yep...I need to blog again. It's been far too long!
Last night I had a book signing at the local library and it was so nice that people actually came! I sold a few books but mostly I bought them. I didn't want the library to have to return them to Amazon (that would look bad for me) so I bought the unsold copies. Now they are here with me in my room...in my little sanctuary where I hide away and pretend to be someone else, somewhere else.
Do you ever worry about yourself? Do you ever think the following thoughts about yourself?:

Hmmm...wonder if I should get out more?

Wonder if I should be more social?

Should I try to make more friends?

I should spend more time with the friends I already have, shouldn't I?

Wonder if I should stop living in my head and start living in the real world?

I shouldn't stop, should I?

Would anybody notice if I suddenly... (fill in the blank)?

Should I be medicated?

Should I become some type of 'aholic (pick your poison)?

Am I nuts? (And if I am, do I really want not to be?)

OK - enough of the philosophical ranting. It's not that bad, really. Just in one of those moods today. Perhaps it's the music I'm listening to...the soundtrack to the movie "Once." It's beautiful, but dang, it can bring a person down! OK, time for some Justin Bieber!
Later, folks...