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Blogging Before Breakfast – Adirondack Style

July 22, 2011 at 9:55 am

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This is what I saw first thing this morning. Standing peacefully in the already 85 degree heat in Lake George. As I steadied myself in my attempt to capture the first light over the water a voice from nowhere chirped, “did you sleep well?” I looked over my shoulder to the right and through the window screens of one of the charming out buildings on the property, a woman stretching in black spandex exercise garb sat smiling on the wooden floor bent over in a yoga posture.

“Fine, really fine,” I chirped back having been one of the few guests with an air conditioned room. “I didn’t see you there. I might just stay put in that room.”

“It’s supposed to drop to the 50’s tonight.”

Fat chance, I’m thinking. She just wants me out of there. I’m in staff quarters and probably cramping their style. In fact, had I not shown up yesterday, the third floor house employees would have been enjoying more than just faux refreshment from their fans had they slept one story below.

Hey, it wasn’t my fault that they screwed up my reservation. I wasn’t expected until a day later and intended to sweat in one of the nineteenth century dwellings here at Wiawaka Holiday House. Any other time of year, I’d have been pleased. As it turns out, before I could blow my stack, embarrass myself with a half-Hungarian temper tantrum, I found myself better off. The only environmental damage thus far being my unruly bangs now flipping in errant patterns across my forehead.

I guess being a well-coiffed beauty at Wiawaka is out of the question.

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What am I doing at Wiawaka in beautiful Lake George? Besides toiling over which room to sleep in and witnessing their weekend fireworks over the water last night, I’m here to write. To write, write, and then write some more. I’ve come  one day ahead of the rest of a group of writerly people who will  hunker down to do the same under the tutelage of our mentor, Irene Sherlock. She is the third farthest traveler besides this Floridian (and another from Gainesville) journeying all the way from Connecticut.

(Speaking of bangs, she cut mine last year. Besides literary gumption, Irene has a talent for hair.)

This is my second July sojourn to the breathtaking Adirondack Mountains to revel in the luxury of two-and-a-half days of abandon. Except for occasionally feeding my technology addicted inner beast, to surrender from the business of normal life. The beast does get more attention than he (of course, it’s a  he!) deserves  thriving on my fertile ADHD cranial turf. News bulletin to those near and dear to me:  some day I intend to conquer his wicked ways if not curtail him. And it will be before hell freezes over, I promise.

But it’s not likely to happen this weekend.

In my selfishly chilled room I sit with bangs akimbo warming up for the show. My bottle of Acquafia pure water on the nightstand beside me, crooked prints hanging on the mustard yellow wall ahead, and my Saucony’s holding up my laptop between knees and feet. I’ll have time to clean up, snap a few pictures on my Canon Power Shot and maybe sip some more coffee. Caffeine, in this setting, might just fuel me nicely.

p.s. just found out, I may have to give up my room. Off to the Lake House. They tell me it’s shady. Hoping they mean in the best sense of the word.

p.p.s. they are treating me graciously here.

IMG_3851Lake George fireworks

To see more about this writing retreat click here.

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This is how it’s done – THE BOOK TRAILER (The Light Bringer Rocks!)

July 20, 2011 at 3:36 pm

Light Bringer

Click below to see the most AWESOME book trailer ever!

The Light Bringers

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Love Addict – Coming in September – Witty and Wise!

July 18, 2011 at 11:30 am

As far back as she can remember, Ethlie Ann Vare was boy crazy.  And, because her father was rarely around, she developed “Affection Deficit Disorder,” her own version of ADD which would later manifest in a series of bad choices when it came to relationships. She had her first sexual experience at eighteen and by age twenty-two, had slept with 75 men. It wasn’t until Ethlie was forty-years-old and had a couple of marriages under her belt that she acknowledged she had a problem and sought help. When she attended a self-help group of sex and love addicts she had the revelation that she, too, was a love addict. Like most of the people in the room, she couldn’t discern the difference between love and longing. And, like them, she had a proclivity for choosing unavailable men.

Eventually successful in her own recovery, Vare, an award-winning author, journalist and screenwriter, is now in a position to help others in her own unique way to recognize and overcome what is truly a debilitating disease. Her offering, Love Addict: Sex, Romance, and Other Dangerous Drugs (HCI Books – September/October 2011 – $14.95 – ISBN-13: 978-0-7573-1595-4), is told in a witty yet insightful voice and it’s anything but your run-of-the-mill clinical book on addiction. Vare’s book is filled with war stories from celebrity love junkies and her own healing wisdom which comes from having spent a decade studying the pathology of love and sex addiction.

With respect for traditional check points, Vare sprinkles humor throughout Love Addict. She suggests: “You might be a sex or love addict if…”

  • You leave a second (or third, or fourth) voice mail message before the first message is returned, just in case (a) she didn’t hear it properly; (b) he’s shy and needs encouragement: (c) maybe you dialed wrong: (d) maybe you forgot to leave a callback number; (e) maybe she called and you missed it…Pick a letter. I’ve got the whole alphabet.
  • You changed your route home to pass your love object’s house. Extra points for parking outside the house and waiting. (Standing across the street counts, if you live in a big city. Extra points for standing in the rain.)
  • You have checked your lover’s underwear.
  • Your Life List of sex partners is in the three figures. (For rock stars and professional athletes, make that four figures).
  • You keep a Life List of sex partners.
  • You really believe you can save that [stripper, convict, biker, serial philanderer, suicide survivor] with the depth and the purity of your love.

Love Addict gives love and sex addicts a chance to face their addiction in a nonthreatening manner and start the process of recovery. The author set out to: 1) Explain what love addiction is; 2) Let you decide if you’re hooked on sex, romance or relationship; 3) Introduce you to some fellow travelers; 4) Provide tools to help you extricate yourself from your misery; 5) And make you laugh, because if you’re a love addict, you’ve cried enough already.

Celebrity contributors include: Supermodel Amber Smith, Justin Caroll, Fashion designer Monah Li,  and others.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Award-winning author, journalist, and screenwriter Ethlie Ann Vare has survived four marriages, drug addiction, jail, and network television. The wit behind the hot humor blog Affection Deficit Disorder, Ethlie started out as a rock-n-roll disc jockey, then became known as an expert on pop culture and a syndicated newspaper columnist. Her books range from biographies of superstars (Stevie Nicks, Ozzy Osbourne, Legend: Frank Sinatra and the American Dream) to adventures in distant galaxies (Andromeda: The Broken Places). She is a featured speaker on campus nationwide thanks to her popular history books about women inventors: Mothers of Invention and Patently Female. Most recently she has been writing for TV shows from the ridiculous (Beastmaster) to the sublime (CSI).

LOVE ADDICT: Sex, Romance and Other Dangerous Drugs

By Ethlie Ann Vare

Foreword by Margaret Cary, M.D., M.B.A., M.P.H.

Love Addict

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Language Loophole (when it’s about food)

July 15, 2011 at 10:08 am

It wasn’t twenty-four hours after writing my blog post that the word “awesome” slipped from these all-knowing, self-righteous  lips. In a two syllable snore I probably defied my own judgment before I even woke up with a raspy sounding “awe” on the inhale and “some” on the ex. I didn’t even wait until I was fully conscious to commit the crime of cliché.

“You know you should blog about this,” my special friend said on our way to the airport the morning after my awesome-amazing-magical blog post.

“Obviously, you are as guilty as anyone else.”

Busted.

I might be able to sit here and muse about the misuse of our precious language but it’s clear that I’m not immune to this cultural malady.

However, I am now proposing a loophole for rampant clichés. They will be deemed acceptable and appreciated while in the act of ingesting food. Better said, when fine dining is involved.

I defy you to sip a white sangria with pear brandy at La Cabana on Atlantic Avenue in Delray Beach, take a bite of their broccoli-carrot-fritter tapas, then dig into the Coca Cabana chicken and not utter at least one forbidden word.

I may be shallow but in my world this experience falls under the umbrella of awe.

The domain of “yum” is just not big enough to encompass the pleasure I get from  good food.  Probably “amazing” and “awesome” aren’t either but for now they seem to carry a more commanding punch.

The said friend flew away with a full belly and an earful of redundancies but I’m pretty sure he’d welcome my new rule.

And  you?

Have a tasty weekend!

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Don’t diffuse the power of your words, please.

July 13, 2011 at 8:39 am

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I woke up thinking about all the awesome, amazing, and magical things that come up in conversation or in the written word these days.  Then I looked at the adjectives and saw tired royalty with torn epaulets, broken lace and dull crowns. I saw lackluster diamonds and unpolished gems. The music I heard sounded like elevator drivel and I felt  numb. I thought: by overusing words that once held power, what exactly are we doing to the one vehicle we have to hold and share our most precious experiences? Has language gone the way of big box stores and cookie cutter fashion? Are we stunting and starving our imagination(s)?

Dare I say, before continuing my rant, that I am the most guilty of all of committing the sin of cliches, exaggerations and platitudes. Just ask any sister or friend who shops with me and must withstand my “loving” every frock and shoe displayed in storefront windows. I chalk it up to the fatal combination of being a non-reader as a child and now a victim of senior-moment-syndrome. (There I said it, I’m old.)

So….let’s shift the blame on our deteriorating culture away from the writer and onto, well, you. Take a moment and take my awesome-amazing-magical test. Don’t feel bad, we’re all in the same limited vocabulary boat going around and around in boring circles.

Do you remember something that was truly awesome? Stop for a minute and don’t include the day you drove to work and saw a double rainbow arcing across Interstate 95. If you pull the “awe” out of awesome, do you recall the power of that word? When was the last time you sincerely (accent on sincere) were in a state of awe?*

When was the last time you were really and truly amazed? Was it when you looked at your friend’s recent “lifestyle lift” facial surgery and saw a few lines and a few years removed from under her eyes? Was Paul McCartney really amazed? Well, maybe…

And, when you tell me that you experienced magic when you watched Michael Jackson perform those moves in his last movie, “This Is It,” when you pause for moment and reflect, was that really magic? I might be more inclined to believe you if you levitated two inches off your seat in the movie theatre. That more resembles magic than the things I hear being described on a daily basis. Really, how can it be magic if it’s happening all the time? I don’t know about you, but magic represents the unexplainable to me and by the virtue of the fact that unexplainable means “can’t be explained,” well, you’re catching my drift, right?

The cynic in me cannot resist this one. Indulge me here, kind readers. I saw an ad the other day for a seminar with “the Masters,” and yes, they even capitalized the “M” in the word.  When I see that word, I think Buddha, I think Moses, I think Confucious, yes, this Jewish girl can even fathom Jesus in that context. You didn’t see any living human in that lineup for a reason. Not to say that many people walking the earth haven’t mastered some craft or skill or even a spiritual teaching with a small “m.” But, sorry, I have trouble categorizing a self-help author (and I, by the way, am the master of this breed of people), a relationship expert or a TM meditation teacher as a big “M” master.

Sorry.

We throw around the words master, guru, enlightened, like diplomas without the four years of college. And, don’t even get me started about the advent of inventing certifications by anyone who can think one up. Brilliant marketing tools, yes. Badges of power, I have my doubts.

Can’t we do better? When choosing our words do we no longer care about their potential “magic?” Their ability to transcend us to the rarest most potent places in our imagination?

I beg you, please don’t stop talking, and above all, I wish you the most awesome, amazing and magical experiences in your life. I just ask us to stop and think before we speak (okay friends, stop laughing at me), and accrue a new cache of words.  Let’s try not to diffuse the power of our beautiful word friends.

Yes, I promise to read more, to put more poetry into my choice of words, to keep learning all about this human species thing we call conversation.

Now, please speak to me of…[fill in the blank, and have a ball!]

xox

*recommendation, check out AWE by the late Paul Pearsall. He spent a great deal of time examining this word and all that it holds.

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