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Sifting Through Mud with Demetria Foster Gray

As the world of blogging goes, you tend to e-meet (yeah, I’m pretty sure I’ve heard that word used somewhere before) a lot of people. One such person that I have had the pleasure of getting acquainted with is Demetria Foster Gray. Her blog, Shaken But Not Stirred, often offers insight about everyday life. To describe it, in her own words, it “showcases human behavior in its purest form to unveil how we navigate around, under, over, and through our daily existence. Because the point is, even though we get shaken up by life, it’s up to us to not be stirred”.

Demetria recently debuted her novel, Sifting Through Mud, which I literally just finished reading, and I’m really excited to shine the spotlight on her today.

Front Cover Only - SiftingThroughMud resized smallSifting Through Mud is a superb story of friendship, betrayal, and forgiveness. Demetria does a fantastic job weaving together two characters’ unlikely friendship by telling both their points of view: Nyla, the widow who unknowingly befriends the pregnant mistress of her dead husband, Nathan, and Vivian, the said mistress who initially tries to fight off their impending friendship. These two women fall in “like” with one another and find themselves connected emotionally whether they want to be or not.

Here’s a peek inside the story:

      Nathan is in the family room watching sports on TV. My handbag and car keys are on the foyer table next to the flower arrangement I sent myself yesterday for our twentieth wedding anniversary. I grab my keys, my handbag, and open the front door. I pause in the doorway to look back over my shoulder, at the life I lived here. Then silently, almost invisibly, I walk out the door.

      I have no idea where I’m going. All I feel is the overwhelming burden of where I’ve been. The toll and heaviness of an undesired life. For now, a hotel will have to do. One where no one can find me, and has big, fluffy pillows to hold my tears and muffle my screams. Tomorrow, when Nathan’s at work, I’ll go back for a few personal things. All I have now are the clothes on my back—clothes which are hanging wearily from my marriage-torn body.

      The truth of the matter is, I’m a murderer. I’ve killed the one person who could’ve saved me—myself. I’ve traveled down this lifeless road for far too long, and now I’m stuck in blandness. I miss the flavor of life. The pleasure and joy of actually feeling feelings, instead of faking feelings. Faking joy, faking happiness. I’m living life without the spice of life and it’s taking its toll on me.

      But thank God the dead has now risen, and it’s time for me to take back my life. To absolve my death. Which is precisely what I did over dinner this evening while Nathan was eating in front of the TV, and I was dining alone at the kitchen table. I asked myself two questions: (1) How much longer can I play a role that’s no longer suited for me?, and (2) How much longer can I hold my breath when all I want to do is breathe? The answers to those questions are what caused me to rise from the table, grab my handbag, and walk out the door.

      The thing is, I don’t know how to love my husband anymore. Or if I ever loved him at all. It seems I did. I must have. But I just don’t know anymore. It’s exhausting spinning your wheels in a marriage that doesn’t seem to move. Not forward, not backwards, just stalled. Stagnant. A lot of bitterness accompanies stagnation. A lot of anger. A lot of slicing each other apart, and chewing each other up. It’s treacherous. It’s sad. It’s time to move on.

      After driving for a half hour to the next town, I find a nice hotel with clean, spacious rooms, a deep Jacuzzi tub, fresh linens, and a complimentary hot breakfast in the morning. Nathan will be calling me when it becomes the middle of the night and I haven’t returned home. He’ll wonder where I am with a slight bit of concern. Or perhaps he’ll sleep like a log through the night and never give my absence a second thought. Either way, I’ve turned off my cell phone. His concern or lack of concern is no longer an issue for me.

You can grab your copy of Sifting Through Mud here: Amazon.com

Congratulations, Demetria, on your release!

About the author:

Author Photo - Medium sizeDemetria Foster Gray is a novelist, freelance writer, and communications consultant. She earned a degree in Marketing Communications and spent the bulk of her career writing for the corporate world. Creating fictional characters and building stories has always been her first love. A native of the Chicago, IL area, Demetria now lives in North Carolina with her husband and two children. Sifting Through Mud is her debut novel.

Places you can contact Demetria:

Her website: Demetria Foster Gray – Author

Facebook: Demetria Foster Gray, Author

Twitter: @DFosterGray

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Categories: Uncategorized, ~Writer Spotlight~ | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Cover Reveal: CassaStorm by Alex J. Cavanaugh

I’m excited to be taking part in the cover reveal for Alex J. Cavanaugh’s upcoming release CassaStorm. It is the third installment in his bestselling Cassa series, which includes CassaStar and CassaFire. The cover is pretty cool, huh?!

CassaStorm by Alex J Cavanaugh

 

Release Date: September 17, 2013

Genre: Science Fiction-Space Opera/Adventure

Print ISBN 9781939844002

E-book ISBN 9781939844019
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
CassaStorm by Alex J. Cavanaugh:

A storm gathers across the galaxy…

Byron thought he’d put the days of battle behind him. Commanding the Cassan base on Tgren, his only struggles are occasional rogue pirate raids and endless government bureaucracies. As a galaxy-wide war encroaches upon the desert planet, Byron’s ideal life is threatened and he’s caught between the Tgrens and the Cassans.

After enemy ships attack the desert planet, Byron discovers another battle within his own family. The declaration of war between all ten races triggers nightmares in his son, shaking Bassan to the core and threatening to destroy the boy’s mind.

Meanwhile the ancient alien ship is transmitting a code that might signal the end of all life in the galaxy. And the mysterious probe that almost destroyed Tgren twenty years ago could be on its way back. As his world begins to crumble, Byron suspects a connection. The storm is about to break, and Byron is caught in the middle…

Ways to link to Alex:
Author blog: Alex J. Cavanaugh
Twitter: @alexjcavanaugh
Amazon: Alex J. Cavanaugh

Categories: Uncategorized, ~Writer Spotlight~ | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 20 Comments

Author Synithia Williams Chats About Worth the Wait, Writing and Her Celeb Crush

Today I have the pleasure of talking with romance author Synithia Williams. I met Synithia on Twitter awhile ago and I’ve been following her budding writing career ever since. She has two romance books under her belt, You Can’t Plan Love and her most recent release Worth the Wait.

Me: Hi, Synithia! Thanks so much for joining us today. Please tell us a little about yourself and when you first knew that you wanted to become a writer?

synithia williams Synithia: Hey, Mel! Thanks for asking me to visit. Hope you don’t mind I brought lattes. I love dishing over coffee 🙂

Anywho, I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. I wrote my first book when I was six and hand wrote my first 300 page novel in high school. It’s something I’ve always done, but really considered a hobby. I didn’t pursue my writing dreams until 2010 when I saw a friend go after her dream. I still can’t believe that my books were published so quickly.

When I’m not writing, I work full time on sustainability issues in the Midlands of South Carolina. I’m married with two boys (who are a handful but loveable). When I’m not writing, working, wife and mothering I’m usually in front of the television watching British miniseries on Netflix.

Me: You write “spicy romance set in the South”. Who are some of your favorite authors and did they play a part in your writing?

Synithia: I’ve got so many favorite authors. I really should pick one, but I’m too wishy washy to do that. I like the worlds created by paranormal authors J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter books and J.R. Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood series. My favorite historical authors are Beverly Jenkins, Laura Lee Guhrkie and Lisa Kleypas. And I adore contemporary romances by Delaney Diamond, Adrienne Byrd and Maureen Smith.

All of these writers play a part in my writing. Whenever they write something that evokes some type of response in me it urges me to try and achieve the same thing in my writing.

Me: I absolutely loved your first book, You Can’t Plan Love and the heat between Kenyatta and Malcolm. I think I fanned Continue reading

Categories: Uncategorized, ~Writer Spotlight~ | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 25 Comments

Where Have All the Books Gone?

file0001352216339How many of you out there own a Kindle or a Nook? Now how many of you still buy print? How many of you still peruse the shelves of a brick and mortar bookstore or the stacks of a library?

file000473781623I still love tangible books. I love dog-earing pages for future reference and I love sliding my bookmark in between the pages to save my place. I love being able to lend one to my sister when the read is worthwhile. And I love sitting with my daughter when she reads one with colorful illustrations that help narrate the story.

A few days ago Barnes and Noble announced that they plan to reduce the number of stores by twenty every year for the next decade. Their revenue over the holiday season was down over the last year and, as you may already know, print book sales everywhere have been down. That struck as both sad and disturbing. Even though they still made a ridiculous amount of money, I wondered if the largest brick and mortar Continue reading

Categories: Uncategorized, ~Random Madness~ | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 28 Comments

Blog Gone Wrong

Why do you blog? Hmm…I’m sure you’ve asked yourself that on more than one occasion. The question probably pops up when you’re trying to figure out something to post about or after you’ve posted something and gotten no feedback. No feedback can lead to some soul-searching about blogging.

I started a blog because a friend told me that all aspiring writers should have one. So, I jumped on that bandwagon so fast that sugar plum fairies were dancing in my head. No one could tell me that it wasn’t going to be an exciting journey. Uh-uh. I was sadly mistaken and I learned quickly that maintaining a blog was kind of hard. Or was it?

I think I initially made the mistake that I had to write about writing Continue reading

Categories: Uncategorized, ~Me, On Writing and What Not~ | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 28 Comments

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