Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Just one week until the party begins and the book releases!!

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Dawn ~ A rambling post about life

Today I watched the sun rise from a chair moist with dew. It wasn't the loveliest sunrise I've ever seen, nor was the wet seat the most comfortable place to rest, but I found contentment.

At my feet lay the goofiest dog I've ever met and a fat and mean cat glared at us both from the doorway. I'd just awakened and left the barn that we call home, leaving my children sleeping inside. The children and the barn aren't perfect, not by standards set by those who set standards about that sort of thing, but I wouldn't want it any other way. My children are beautiful, they make me proud, and our house might look like a barn on the outside, but it is clearly a home within.

The dog isn't the prettiest dog and has no pedigree. He's a neurotic part black lab, his family roots as diverse as my own. The cat was a stray, found in our backyard, who is too expensive for a cat and not even a very nice one most of the time.

My car is used and a lot of the things we own came to us second-hand. I am a terrible cook, but the cooking and the newness don't seem to matter to any of us.

We're not rich, we don't live exotic lives. Nothing about any of it says 'happiness' according to everything I'd been taught to expect.

And that was what made me so content. I guess I always believed every happy ever after has a handsome prince. I think I always thought comfort came from money, nice things, proving you were better--faster, stronger, more lovely, whatever.

I grew up with the notion that if you find the happy ever after, you live in a house with a white picket fence and a sports car and an suv, both new, in the driveway.

But what I realized? I don't want any of those things. That house? It comes with a mortgage and, once you've been paying on that for a while, taxes and repairs and upkeep...

I hate all of those things. I like my barn.
The cars are expensive--few actually have their cars paid off. My car isn't new--2004, thanks much--but I love it and I don't owe anyone anything on it.

Prince Charming? Well, I have two princes and one wonderful princess. I'm not unhappy without the prince and neither are did I just want him like the fence and the car payment? Something I thought would make me happy, but I already AM?

So looking at the sunrise--which wasn't that pretty, since clouds obscured most of it--sitting in front of the barn filled with second-hand treasures, children who aren't perfect, with a goofy dog and a fat mean cat...

And me, not perfect either (I'm chubby, you see, so therefore should be unhappy, even though I eat what I want and have been fortunate to not do without for quite a while) and not rich or world famous...

Just a writer in Ohio living a very normal life...

Looking at that sunrise, I realized that I've been waiting for things to 'get better' or for us to hit that magical point where everything fell into place.

What I hadn't realized? That we already had it all and I am very happy.

Anyway, the point of this blog isn't to brag. The point is that everyone at some point forgets that happy isn't always what we think it should be. Happy sometimes sneaks up while we're doing other things, while we're planning for tomorrow.

In my case, happy is here right now. Luckily, I realized it and drank tea with the goofy dog and fat cat and watched the sun rise over the hayfield...

And thanked the universe for all that I ever wanted, but never thought to ask for.

Monday, July 21, 2014

The real secret to success at anything creative

I've answered a lot of interview questions over the years (google interview and my name--links here would clutter the post) and I've been asked one thing again and again (whether in interviews and or writers, artists, etc.)...

How did you do it?

How does someone become an author? An artist? How does one make a go of a dream, really?

Here are some tips from me.

Don't go to the birthday party. Skip the picnic. Don't binge watch seven seasons of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Forget cooking dinner tonight. Sleep? Not tonight. Don't answer the phone when it rings. Take a pass on that invitation to go shopping.

Sit your happy little tooshie down and work. Work when you're tired. Work when you're sick. Work when the sound of laughter and fun streams in your window on a beam of golden sunshine and every instinct begs you to go join in the fray. Work when you could be laughing. Work when you could be sleeping. Work. Work. Work. When you're tired of working, rub your eyes really hard and do five jumping jacks...then go back to work.

Eventually, you'll have something other people other people want to see. Celebrate at that point--go out and live life for a day or a weekend or an hour.

Then? Sit back down and go back to work.

You give up moments. You lose forever times in the real world in your dedication to the fictional characters or to the lines on the page or to the haze of imagination.

But you'll have a shot at the dream.

Friday, July 18, 2014

A Little Harmless Anniversary Blog Hop

From July 18th through July 27th, I'm joining a bunch of authors to celebrate the  10th anniversary of the Harmless series.   The Grand Prize is an iPad Mini, provided by Melissa Schroeder and you can win by entering below.

Mel is re-releasing A Little Harmless Sex, the book that started the whole fun Harmless series.


Is it love, or just a little harmless sex?

Max has always been Anna‘s knight in shining armor. But Max has always seen her as a charming, and very sexy, little sister.

Until Max’s cold fiance dumps him, Anna unloads another of her many conquests and she invites him over for margaritas and Mexican food. Too much tequila, too much flirting, and too many years of fighting the attraction — Max loses control and has mind-blowing sex with Anna on her couch. And in her shower. And in her bed. When the sun rises the next morning, both of them must face that their night together is just the first of many.

For Max, he knows he wants Anna forever, but convincing a commitment-phobe like Anna is no easy task. For Anna, she can’t believe she has finally slipped beneath Max’s steely self-control. He is every woman’s dark, wet fantasy come true.

But what happens when Max pushes Anna for more than just A Little Harmless Sex?

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

A Red Rose full of thorns...

Due to recent events, and for the lack of communication from Red Rose Publishing owner/ceo, Wendi Felter Gabbidon, I hereby publicly announce the termination of my contracts and reclaim all rights to the following creative works: Odd Stuff, The Odd Series Book 1.

My name is Virginia Nelson, writing as Virginia Nelson, and I am the author and sole copyright owner of the book Odd Stuff, by Virginia Nelson.  

Notification of this termination has been sent to Red Rose Publishing, the publisher, and DMCA notifications have been provided to third party vendors.

To the readers, I apologize for any inconvenience and will rerelease the series entirely--something I have been unable to do previously due to various issues with RRP.

Thanks so much for your continued support. 

Monday, July 14, 2014


The original cover, designed by the wonderful
Kendra for Sapphire Blue Publishing
What better time of year for National Nude day than the sweltering, muggy dog days of summer? Today, June 14th, is officially National Nude day. Celebrate! Be nekked.

Today is the day for...yup, you knew it was coming... everyone to go Clothing Optional.

One of the first books I ever wrote, this sizzling short story was my debut into the world of erotic romance. Years later and I still get new readers who enjoy this triad of friends and their steamy tropical vacation.

"Two men, one woman, a tropical optional."


Clothing Optional
Virginia Nelson

Buy Links

On the rebound, Brie is thrilled at the idea of a vacation on the beaches of Florida. It will be especially great since it is with two men who are absolutely irresistible…and equally unattainable. Murphy and his boyfriend are offering the escape and maybe, if she spends enough time with them, she will be able to resist wanting to strip them every time she sees them.

Murphy has always been oddly attracted to his best pal, Brie. But he has never touched a woman in that way. When his lover and boyfriend Andy suggests they make love to her, that she is perfect for them to experience a ménage, Murphy wonders if he is not enough somehow.

But the temptation of having them both…When they get to the resort and find out that Clothing Optional should have been in bold print on the brochure, the three of them are in for the weekend of their lives.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

August Party Invite

There's gonna be a party!!

 And you're invited!
We used to have block parties when I lived in suburbia. Have you ever been to a block party? I loved the idea of a small town get together... Me and a bunch of my author palssharing giveaways, chatting, otherwise hanging out with the readers before we all gear up for back to school chaos.

List of attending authors coming soon, however you can join now so you don't miss out on anything. Prizes, games, giveaways and suchall the usual goodness of an author Facebook party. This one? I'm throwing the block party to celebrate the release of the second Watkin's Pond Series book, While You Were Writing.

So, come, join us. BYOB

Well, you don't have to bring your own books. I'm sure we'll be giving a bunch of those away, but you can bring a beer, if that's your thing. Sit in your undies or footie pjs, no need for makeup or even to brush your hair, and win things. It'll be magical. Join us? Here's the link to the facebook event where the party will be:

Authors, do you want to come play? Some of y'all will be getting an invite via email because we've partied together before. If we haven't, you're more than welcome to message me on fb or email and me or Sheri (who is helping to organize this because she is wonderful) will get the details emailed over to you ASAP.

Additional Note:

Runaway Groom 
Watkin's Pond Series, Book 1 
Available now!

Buy Links:

Add it on Goodreads
While You Were Writing
Watkin's Pond Series, Book 2 
Now available for preorder!

Buy Links:

Also, don't forget you can download the Virginia Nelson, Author App from the Google Play Store to stay updated on all the newest news!
xoxo- Virg

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

My cat is a jerk

Meet #Evilkitteh, aka Jinx (You can find her on instagram, too.)
I did the big meaningful post about how wonderful, even if flawed, my dog is and yet I've never really done a post about my cat.

My cat is a jerk.

I call her evilkitteh on the internet and I think people believe I'm kidding...

I'm not. She's a jerk.

She's fat, for one. If there was a kittycat Weight Watchers, I'd put her on it. I'm pretty sure when I call her fat, she's looking at me and laughing her cat-laugh. She's clearly thinking something along the lines of, "Yeah, look at your butt, or rather that sun eclipsing wad of cellulite you're sitting on, and then we'll talk about my swaying gut, mmhhmkah, human?"

She refuses to eat cat food. She became a Temptations addict about a year ago and will now go on hunger strikes (which don't seem to change the fat) until I cave and give her the cat-crack. I'm looking into support groups, maybe a Temptations rehab, but so far, no such luck.

She likes to stare at you, right in the eye, and then knock stuff down. She has a preference for glass things. I think the tinkling of broken glass is her idea of a symphony.

She tries to kill people
. Like all cats, she enjoys rubbing against your legs or flopping while you go down the stairs. If she manages to trip you, she generally purrs. She's bloodthirsty, that one.

She's a big fan of torturing the dog. Making him growl, jump, startle, freak out...all of it brings joy to her feline heart. Nothing makes her day more than making the dog fall down the stairs. It's like his yelp fulfills her.

She's working on her memoir. This writing is sometimes disturbed by me clicking the delete button, erasing the hard earned letters on the screen from her walking back and forth across the keyboard. Although she's been thwarted so far, she hasn't given up her dream of becoming a bestselling cat author. Me getting a touchscreen has further enabled her process and she diligantly works to finish her autobiography. The working title translates to, "Fat Cat in a Skinny World," but is spelled "af;iojdfsaokdfioijfdjkjdfasdfsaae4fsad" in cat language.

But my favorite trait in any creature is loyal. She may try to kill us. She may occasionally claw at us. She might even try to smother us in our sleep someday, but she's loyal.

She'll stick by us until the end and has proved that.

Even if she plans on the end happening sooner than we might prefer...

Is your cat a jerk, too? I know I can't be alone in this.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Lessons I teach my kids

Not so long ago, but long ago
When I became a mother, I planned. I read.

Nothing prepared me for the reality of it, not babysitting or reading or thinking about being a parent. I was granted three wonderful children who are terrifically different in their temperaments, preferences and every other thing that could possibly be different.

That said, it occasionally falls upon me to impart wisdom, advice--life lessons, if you will--to my darling children.

Here's a list (in no particular order) of lessons I never dreamed of teaching my children, yet have found the need to discuss--sometimes at length--with my offspring.

  • Never open the car door or window to the crazy drug addict.
If someone runs up to your car, yelling that they are dying of the AIDS virus and need money for the bus, there is something wrong, indeed. Not something you can fix by handing them money. Something you should lock your doors and keep your windows closed against. This is especially true since a lot of people in Cleveland have guns (sometimes even with concealed carry permits) and the person running up to the car CLEARLY forgot this, meaning something is VERY wrong with them, so just drive away. Quickly.
The gang, now
  • But do pull over and help sometimes.
There is a really fine line and trust your gut on that one. My kids know I’ll pull over (have done so and even driven 5mi for gas for someone, gave it to them way out of my way and making myself late, before returning to whatever I was doing when I saw the person alongside the road), but I don’t pull over for the bus money people. There’s a time, your gut knows the time, trust your gut and you probably (not guaranteed) won’t get killed. But you can’t not help…being a helper is one of the greatest things you can do with your life, in my opinion.
  • Sometimes it is okay to be angry.
It is also okay to be sad. It is okay to be hurt. You don’t have to pretend not to be any of those things. Chances are good, though, if you let those emotions rule you—which they will try to do—you won’t remember to choose to be happy. Because it is a choice. Life will drag you down, worse than any riptide out there, but you can’t let it. Although you gotta try to find the happy, to find the way to get past the sad/hurt/angry/whatever, you are ALLOWED to feel those emotions. You don’t have to bury them under fake smiles or otherwise hide what you’re feeling…you’re allowed to feel bad things. I’ve found people are happy to tell folks to be happy, but they forget to let them cry. I try to let them feel all of it because, well, life is full of both good and bad. Ignoring any part of it, or pretending it away, is not living life fully. Embrace your tears and your laughter. The best days are the ones when the laughs outnumber the tears.
  • Other people are going to be angry, too.
And sometimes you can’t do a thing about it. We met an angry security guard at the cemetery the other day. He was just…ticked. I don’t know what his personal issues were and he certainly was in no mood to chat about it. Sometimes you can help—be the shoulder to cry on, be the person they vent to. Others? Sometimes you just have to let others feel what they’re feeling and walk away. You can’t fix everything and if more people admitted to that, they’d spend less time worrying over things they couldn’t change.
  • Sometimes it is your fault they are hurt/angry/sad.
If you can, make it right. Own up to what you did and try to make amends for your transgression. Other times…
They’re going to feel how they feel and there’s not a thing you can do about it. Learn to accept that you can’t control how others feel or think and worry about what you can control—yourself.
  • Language is powerful.
You can use it to hurt. You can use it to heal. Sometimes, you don’t intend to and you do one or both things…
Remember your words have power. Remember your words can change the world, or even change a person.
Choose them accordingly.

What are some lessons you never planned to teach your kids, but did anyway?

Monday, July 7, 2014

Becoming a dog parent

Do you have an apple? Apples ROCK, more than bacon, clearly.
Although I've pet sitted (petsat?) for my friend's pooches upon occasion, it has been many moons since I had a dog. My children don't even remember any dogs that we've had, it has been so long since the pitter patter of furry feet.

That said, I figured the pet sitting prepared me for bringing a canine into our home and hearts. I figured that rigorous research into breeds, training methods, available dogs would mean we'd transition smoothly from being a no dog household to a dog one. Once we met our Ralph, it seemed like a no brainer--he was already house trained, he knew 'sit' and 'stay' and he was big enough, I didn't figure the kids could break him.

Basically, I treated getting a dog like researching for a book. If I read enough, watched enough videos, borrowed other people's pets, I could become the best dog mommy in the world. I'd be one of those pet parents who has the most obedient pet and random folks would compliment my fur baby.

Me and our new furry pal
I did the same thing before I became a human mommy, thinking I could read and be prepared for a baby. Ha!

I should have learned from that experience that there are just some things that aren't the same as what you read. However, I was hopeful.

To give my dog credit, he's awesome. He is really obedient. He's loyal--he follows me everywhere like a doggy shadow.

He, however, is nothing like the books said he'd be.

He's a lab retriever. The books tell me this means he's a runner. He'll also love water.
Happy Dog

Apparently, no one told Ralph what breed he is. He doesn't like water, it kind of freaks him out. He also doesn't have any desire to run away...he'll run WITH us, but I don't move very fast and he prefers to hang out wherever I am.

The books said that leave it would be a hard thing to teach him. Nope, he gets that. Down? (Like 'lay down, dog') I'm speaking another language. He doesn't get it. He looks at me all hopeful, willing to sit, stay, gimme high five, whatever...but has no clue what I'm asking with 'down.'  So he then just goes through what he does know (sit, stay, high five, up) until he gets frustrated with me and flops...and then can't figure out why I'm so darn happy he's down.

He started out pretty social. He didn't mind other dogs, other people, whatever. Now? Barks at everything. The first few weeks, he didn't make a sound. Now? Woofwoofwoofwoofwoofwoofwoofwoofwoofwoofwoofwoofwoofwoofwoofwoofwoofwoofwoof.

I'm pretty sure he's telling me a story of some kind. Something along the lines of, "Hey, human! I love you so much! Could you look over there? That guy? Do you see him? In the red swim trunks. I think he's a zombie. He's gonna eat our brains. Human? Do you see him? Why aren't you looking at the guy? He's right there, even with those plastic things on your face, you can surely see him. Human?"

But I just stare at the dog and wonder where the woofwoof off button is. He has one, I know it because he came with it firmly OFF.

Basically, I'm reading more books. If they don't help...

It's weird, but it doesn't matter altogether that much. Sure, he might not be the most obedient dog on the planet, but he tries. Sure, he's a neurotic ball of fur, full of separation anxiety and water fears and a whole mess of other things (thinking of getting him a thunderjacket, actually...because dood, he's a spaz)...

But he's our spaz.

The one thing that the books and movies and videos didn't mention was that by saving him (rescuing, that's the word the pound uses) from the shelter, he rescued us.

Because you really don't realize you have a dog shaped hole in your heart until you fill it with just the right dog.

We found him. He's got a very long name, nearly as long as his list of To-Do training tasks, but he's our guy and we love him.

Do you have a furry friend who rescued you, too?

escued us.