Ben Is Back (2018) #SundayScreening Movie Review

Would you prefer to watch the video review, instead of reading it? CLICK HERE

Title: Ben is Back (2018)
Director: Peter Hedges
Writer: Peter Hedges
Stars: Julia Roberts,
Lucas Hedges, and
Courtney B. Vance
Genre: Drama
Length: 1 hr. and 43 minutes

SHOW RATING OVERVIEW
Writing: ★★★★★ Cinematography:  ★★★ Story: ★★★★ Acting: ★★★★★ Overall: ★★★★.★ (4.25)

STORYLINE:

Ben Is Back follows the charming yet troubled Ben Burns (Lucas Hedges), who returns home to his unsuspecting family one fateful Christmas Eve. Ben’s wary mother Holly Burns (Julia Roberts) welcomes her beloved son’s return, but soon learns he is still very much in harm’s way. During the 24 hours that may change their lives forever, Holly must do everything in her power to avoid the family’s downfall.

AWARDS:

Lucas Hedges won the award for Best Performance by an Actor 23 and Under at the Los Angeles Online Film Critics Society Awards. I’m actually surprised this movie didn’t bring in more awards.

MY 2 CENTS:

Writing: ★★★★★ Let me start by admitting that I’ve never suffered with Addiction or known anyone who has, not really. Watching this film, I was moved. The truth in the scenes and the raw openness of the dialogue draws you in rips your heart out. Writer Peter Hedges, who also happened to direct this film, does a wonderful job of telling Lucas’ story. I think the message was powerful and devastating. He doesn’t sugarcoat the pain, deceit, and manipulation involved in an addict’s life.

Cinematography:  ★★★ There was nothing special or different about the cinematography in this film. It wasn’t great… it wasn’t terrible… it just was.

Story: ★★★★ I recently watched ‘Beautiful Boy’ with Steve Carell… another movie about a son who is an addict, only this time it focuses on a father-son relationship. If I had to compare the two movies, I’d say ‘Beautiful Boy’ was more realistic. With that said, I’ve read a number of reviews for ‘Ben Is Back’ stating that the story is unrealistic, the events would never happen, and that Julia’s character would never do the things she does in the film. As a mother, I will say, there is very little I wouldn’t do to help my children.

Acting: ★★★★★ Really, there are only two performances that need to be discussed; Julia Roberts and Lucas Hedges because they carried this film. Without them, there wouldn’t be a story.

I’ve always loved Julia Roberts, she gives everything to every roll she takes and with this one… she is raw, exposed, desperate, and unconditionally loving. She gave an outstanding performance and, as a mother, left me in tears.

Lucas Hedges really impressed me with his performance. Sure, he is the director’s son and it probably got him the roll, but I think he held his own. I am not at all surprised that he won an award for this performance. In this brief 24-hour glimpse into his life we are both swept away by his playful nature with his younger siblings and blindsided by the devastating admissions into his past. Hedges does a beautiful job portraying not only the victim but the instigator.   

MY FAVORITE QUOTES:

“You don’t know what you’re doing. I’m not worth it. If you really knew me, you’d be done with me.” ~ Ben Burns

I think the reason I love this quote so much is because it shows just how much someone can fail to see their own self-worth. Ben is convinced he is no good, can do nothing right, and will always fail. But when he says this, he is talking to the one person in the world who will never be able to see him that way, his mother.

Check out my YouTube channel and the video review below… and make sure you hit subscribe so you never miss a video.

View the Official Trailers Here!

Interview with Julia Roberts on Good Morning America

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Week 19 – #WritingWednsday Challenge (1 day late)

Today is the 19th Edition of #WritingWednesday!!!

Remember, #WritingWednesday is an EASY, STRESS-FREE, weekly writing challenge.

  • Read the writing prompt below,
  • Spend 5 minutes writing (in your own voice or the voice of a character you’re writing) whatever comes to mind,
  • DON’T EDIT what you write! IT DOES NOT HAVE TO BE PERFECT!

The goal is 5 minutes of creativity.

Today I am writing in my own voice!

Today’s writing prompt:

What do you need right now?

Time! I need time.

It’s Thursday afternoon and usually I post my weekly Writing Wednesday post on, well… Wednesday. Unfortunately, or maybe luckily, I was on vacation this last week and my blog got put on the back burner. I think we all need a little me time, but right about now, I need more work time.

I’m trying to catch up, with everything. I have a stack of books about a mile high that I need to get through, a list of movies about two miles long that I need to watch and review, a number of author interview requests, blog posts to set up, and a self-publishing course to create.

So yeah, I need time. If you have any extra that you’d like to loan me, I’d forever be in your debt.

© 2019 Nina Soden

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Alright, now it’s your turn. I’d love to see what today’s writing prompt inspires in you. So, if you are willing, go to the comment section below and start typing. Take 5 minutes and let’s see what you come up with! 

What do you need right now?

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Would you like more sources for daily writing prompts? Click on the links below for great writing prompt journals I think you’ll really love!

This Self-Discovery Journal provides more than 200 thoroughly unique & enjoyable writing prompts. Skyrocket your self-esteem, develop your creativity and explore all area’s of life: Writing Prompts about your love life, Writing Prompts to better deal with social anxiety’s
Writing Prompts for finding empowering strategies to deal with worries, stress and failures.
And much, much more
Do you want to know yourself better? Self-discovery and self-revelation aren’t easy. With simple but provocative questions about wishes and fears, memories and beliefs, secrets and dreams, All About Me will reveal everything you ever wanted to know about yourself but never thought—or dared—to ask. Whether you fill it in or answer questions out loud, this is the perfect gift for your friends, your family, your loved one… and you.

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Are you an author who is looking for ways to stay organized and on track with all your writing goals? Check out my author workbooks below. They are full of all the tools I use in my writing process!

Are you working on a manuscript, but need a little help getting organized? Check out SO YOU WANT TO WRITE A BOOK ~ An Indie Author Guide to Outlining and Planning Your Next Novel

It isn’t just for indie-authors. I have filled it with all the tools I’ve learned over the years and use on a regular basis with each book I write.

Want help meeting your writing goals? Check out JUST WRITE: The Ultimate Author’s Bullet Journal

JUST WRITE is the Ultimate Author’s Bullet Journal designed as a planner-journal hybrid to help new and experienced writers stay organized while still fostering creativity. Track your project progress, plan your writing and publishing goals, maintain your personal/business to do list, never miss another deadline or appointment again, keep track of writing ideas, schedule and log social sharing and blog post ideas, keep a record of books you’re reading or want to read, maintain a running playlist, etc.

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About to Cry by Nina Soden

If I should cry, my eyes would know, all the feelings I didn’t let show.

If I should cry, my eyes would see, all of the things I neglected to be.

If I should cry, my heart would hear, all of the secrets I hold dear.

If I should cry, my heart would feel, all of the things that can never be real.

Dedicated to my family, those alive and those lost.

(c) copyright 2008 ~ Nina Soden

For more poems, check out by collection on Amazon: Private Words Unspoken

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Author Interview ~ Mansu Edwards

I’d like to welcome Mansu Edwards, co-author of Plush Couches, as a guest to my blog.

Let’s start by just getting to know you a little before we dive into Plush Couches and find out what your story is all about.

  • What is your name and do you write under a pen name? Omar Glenn. My pen name is Mansu Edwards
  • Where do you call home? Brooklyn
  • Obviously, we know you are an author, but some writers have other jobs as well. Do you have another occupation? Do you believe you’re any good at it? Do you like what you do? I’m a Brand Ambassador. It’s a freelance gig. I’m very good at what I do. It’s cool.
  • What is your family like? My father likes reading online news articles. My mother watches movies on the Internet.
  • If it doesn’t bother you, can you let us know what your childhood home looked like? My room was plastered with hip hop posters. I had the N.E.S. and S.N.E.S. consoles and video games. The apartment was cool. It was a typical apartment.
  • Do you have any hobbies, other than writing? What do you enjoy doing? I enjoy reading and visiting new places in New York City. Also, I enjoy watching videos, listening to music and podcasts on YouTube.
  • What is your greatest dream? To leave a positive and powerful legacy.
  • What kind of person do you wish you could be? What is stopping you? Nothing is stopping me. Right now, I’m transforming into the person God wants me to be.
  • Not to pry too much, but do you remember your first love? My first love is food. I love to eat.
  • What is the most terrible thing that ever happened to you? I had an Asthma attack in the 2nd or 3rd grade. My Mother took me to the hospital.
  • What or who inspired you to start writing? And how long have you been writing? When I was young, I loved school writing assignments. It gave me the opportunity to use my imagination. I’ve been writing for 10 plus years.
  • What was your dream growing up? Did you achieve that dream? If so, in what ways was it not what you expected? If you never achieved the dream, why not? I was a big wrestling fan. I wanted to become a Wrestler. I discovered that Wrestling was scripted and I think that’s what swayed me away from pursuing it. I eventually replaced it with video games and Hip Hop.
  • Who is your role model? Jay-Z, M.F. Doom, Jay Electronica
  • What is your greatest fear? Not having enough time to achieve all my goals.
  • Do you prefer e-books, paperbacks, hard-covers or audio-books? Paperbacks.
  • Have you ever read a book more than once? If so, what was it? Yes. “As A Man Thinketh” by James Allen
  • What is your opinion of novellas? I like an engaging story. A great story doesn’t have to be 200+ pages. Quality is key.
  • Have you ever read a book just based on its cover? Yes.
  • What is your favorite film based on a book? The Talented Mr. Ripley
  • What is your favorite book genre at the moment? I don’t have one.
  • What books have made it onto your wish list recently? And why? “Outwitting The Devil” by Napoleon Hill. I like reading self-improvement books.
  • What book are you reading at the moment? And in what format? I’m reading, “How To Talk To Anyone At Work”. Paperback.
  • If you could invite any four (4) celebrities (alive or dead) to your dinner party, who would you invite and why? Nipsey Hussle, Jay-Z, Ghostface Killah, Bishop Nehru. I would invite them because they’re innovative risk takers. Our ideas can change the trajectory of the Art world.

Let’s shift somewhat and talk about your latest story.

  • What is the name of your most recent book and if you had to sum it up in 20 or fewer words, what would you say? The name of my most recent book is “Plush Couches”. On the way to a job interview, Rio Akuba experiences a critical and unsettling case of gas on the train after eating organic, Sweety Berry Bears.
  • Is the above book part of a series? No.
  • How did you come up with the cover? Who designed the cover of your book(s)? That’s a good question. I believe I left the idea up to the Illustrator.
  • Did you listen to any particular songs while writing your book(s)? I didn’t listen to music while writing “Plush Couches”.
  • How did you come up with the title for your book(s)? God gave me the title.
  • Do you have a book trailer? If so, where can we watch it? I don’t have a book trailer.
  • In your latest novel, who is the lead character and can you tell us a little about him/her? The main character is Rio. He’s unambitious and lives with his parents. Rio is the type who needs external motivation to take action.
  • What is your character’s greatest strengths? His greatest strength is emotionally connecting with people.
  • And what are his/her greatest weaknesses?  He’s too dependent. He doesn’t trust himself.
  • What are some of his/her favorite foods? He doesn’t have any favorite foods.
  • What’s a positive quality that your character is unaware that he or she has? He’s observant and perceptive.
  • Will readers like or dislike this character, and why? Readers will like the character because he’s charismatic and witty.
  • What first gave you the idea for your latest book? God gave me the idea.

Let’s talk now about your writing process.

  • What is your writing style like? Are you a pantster or a plotter? I’m a Panster. I prefer writing the story instead of using an outline. It’s more enjoyable.
  • Have you come across any specific challenges in writing or publishing? What would you do differently the next time? My challenge is selecting the best idea from several. I’m still looking for a solution to the problem.
  • Are you a self-published/Indie author or did you publish through a traditional publishing company? I’m a self-published, indie author.
  • If you’re a self-published/Indie author what made you go that route instead of the traditional publishing route? I spent an exorbitant amount of money with a Vanity Publisher which made me switch to self-publishing.
  • What’s the best advice that you have been given when it comes to writing? Finish the story. It’s only a draft.
  • Where can your readers follow you? . www.twitter.com/Ohassa, Instagram: @mansuedwards , www.facebook.com/Ohassa
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#MindfulnessMonday 6/10/2019 – STRESS is a 6 letter word!

Today’s #MindfulnessMonday Tip: Remember to take time to enjoy life and those around you. So often we find ourselves working tooth and nail so that SOMEDAY we might enjoy our retirement. Make sure you’re taking time to enjoy life today… not just hoping to do it SOMEDAY in the future.

Check out today’s #MindfulnessMonday video where I talk about stress; what it is, signs of stress, what to do when you start feeling stressed, and how to protect yourself from stress! You can check out the video by clicking HERE!

Today’s Mindfulness Exercise:

Observation Communication

This is a partner activity. It can be done with a spouse, a friend, even your children. All you have to do is have a conversation that doesn’t have anything to do with work, school, stress, or anything else that has been bogging you down. For five to ten minutes, I want you to talk about only the things you notice around you. This is best done while taking a walk, sitting in a park, or even over coffee at an outdoor café.

If you’re having trouble starting the conversation or you find yourselves getting sucked into typical meaningless small-talk, try playing a game of eye-spy to get your started. You might just find the conversation takes on a life of its own, allowing you some time away from the daily stressors that tend to fill our minds throughout the day.

Don’t be afraid to let this conversation continue as long as is comfortable.

Mindfulness Journaling Prompt:

After completing the Observation Communication Exercise, take a few minutes to write down as many observations you made throughout the conversation. How many drew your attention back to work/school/stress related topics and how many were completely unrelated to any stressors in your daily life.

Keep this list and try this exercise when you are further along in your mindfulness practices and see if you do better.

Check out my #MindfulnessMonday YouTube Series and don’t forget to click subscribe so you never miss an episode!

EPISODE 23 ~ Live For Today!

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STRESS REDUCATION TOOLS!

Stress Less Cards – 50 Inspirational Mindfulness & Meditation Exercises | Helps Relieve Stress, Anxiety | Natural Relaxation, Insomnia & Sleep Aid

A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook (A New Harbinger Self-Help Workbook)

Stress and pain are nearly unavoidable in our daily lives; they are part of the human condition. This stress can often leave us feeling irritable, tense, overwhelmed, and burned-out. The key to maintaining balance is responding to stress not with frustration and self-criticism, but with mindful, nonjudgmental awareness of our bodies and minds. Impossible? Actually, it’s easier than it seems.

Would you like to take the 52-week challenge and experience a more mindful existence? Check out The Invisible You ~ 52 Weeks of Meditations, Activities, and Writing Prompts to Help you Discover You!

Hypnoser Weighted Blanket 2.0 for Kids, Adults, Men, Women, Heavy Blanket Providing Calm and Comforting Sleep, Sleep Faster (48″x72″ 12 Lbs, Dark Grey, Fit Twin Full Size Bed)

Boseen Palm Shaped 360 degree Metal Roller Massager- Handheld Body Massage Tool for Deep Tissue Stress Relief and Cellulite Reduction (Blue)


I’m certified in Holistic Stress Management and Mind/Body Fitness. I’ve been practicing Mindfulness for 10+ years and am passionate about helping others in their pursuit of a more mindful existence.

Photo by: Mikel Healy

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John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum (2019) ~ Review

Would you prefer to watch the video review, instead of reading it? CLICK HERE

Title:                                 John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum (2019)

Director:                           Chad Stahelski

Writers:                            Derek Kolstad, Shay Hatten, Chris Collins, & Marc Abrams 

Stars:                               Keanu Reeves (John Wick), Halle Berry (Sofia), Ian McShane (Winston), Laurence Fishburne (Bowery King), Asia Kate Dillon (The Adjudicator), Lance Reddick (Charon), & Randall Duk Kim (Doctor)

Genre(s):                          Action / Crime / Thriller

Length:                            2 hours and 11 minutes

SHOW RATING OVERVIEW†

  • Writing ★★★
  • Cinematography ★★★★★
  • Story ★★★★
  • Acting ★★★★
  • OVERALL RATING: ★★★★ (4)

STORYLINE:

In this third installment of the adrenaline-fueled action franchise, skilled assassin John Wick (Keanu Reeves) returns with a $14 million price tag on his head and an army of bounty-hunting killers on his trail. After killing a member of the shadowy international assassin’s guild, the High Table, John Wick is excommunicado, but the world’s most ruthless hit men and women await his every turn.

MY 2 CENTS:

Let’s start with this… Keanu Reeves is going to be 55 years old later this year, September 2nd to be exact. Now, I’m not saying 55 is old, because it isn’t. However, I’m not even close to 55 yet and there is no way I’d have the energy it must have taken to do that role. Nor do I have the amazing abs that Keanu has… I’d love to know his workout routine because come on, it is bikini season after all.

I joked with my husband, as we left the theatre. I said, I bet if you took everything except the dialog out of the script, you’d be left with about 5 pages. There was virtually no dialogue in this movie. Don’t get me wrong, it didn’t bother me. You don’t really go to a Keanu Reeves movie to hear him talk… he is eye candy, plain and simple. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t dive into his characters, he does. He gave 110% to the role of John Wick and I can’t wait to see the next one. Chapter 3 left the story open for another sequel and I’m sure fans of all ages, like me, will be lining up to see it.

This movie will keep you on the edge of your seat the whole time. The action starts the moment the lights go out and doesn’t stop until the credits start rolling. Seriously, the fighting is insane… Its raw, with the grit of the Jason Bourne movies and the improvisation of real life. I love how they didn’t pretend that their guns had an endless supply of bullets; numerous times throughout the movies the characters had to stop fighting to change out their magazines. No more bullets, that’s ok just throw the gun at his head. Can’t find a weapon, no problem just run to the nearest antiquities shop and start tossing around daggers and hatchets.

Probably the best action film series I’ve seen in a while. No, there isn’t much there in terms of story…

His wife dies… he gets a dog… the dog gets killed… he goes on a killing spree

Yup, that pretty much sums up all three stories.

I’m not going to tell you who gets hurt, who dies, who disappears, or who gets excommunicado, you’ll have to watch the movie to get all the gruesome details. Trust me, it is worth the watch!

Don’t wait until you can rent this one at home – See it on the big screen!

CHARACTERS

I’m not going to talk about John Wick… If you’re going to see the film you already love his character. I want to talk about two of the characters that I felt really stole the screen whenever they were on.

Lance Reddick who played Charon – the man who worked the front desk at the Continental Hotel. He was fantastic!!!

Randall Duk Kim the actor who played the doctor that helped John sew up his shoulder five minutes before his status of excommunicado was in effect. When he pulled out his gun and handed it to Wick so that he could shoot him it was powerful… emotional… and a sign of the honest friend he was. I thought his role, although small, was extremely well written. That had to be one of my favorite scenes in the whole movie.

MY FAVORITE QUOTES:

“If you want peace, prepare for war.” ~ Winston

Check out my YouTube channel and the video review below… and make sure you hit subscribe so you never miss a video.


John Wick (Chapter 3 (2019) Official Trailer


John Wick: Chapter 2 (2017) Official Trailer


John Wick (2014) Official Trailer

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The Supernaturals by David L. Golemon (Book Review)

Would you prefer to watch the video, instead of reading the review? CLICK HERE

TITLE: The Supernaturals

AUTHOR: David L. Golemon

RATING OVERVIEW
Writing: ★★
Story: ★★★★
Characters: ★★★★★
Appearance: ★★★★★

OVERALL: (4.5)

AMAZON DESCRIPTION:

Named One of Riffle’s Ten Best Haunted House Books of All Time

Built at the turn of the twentieth century by one of the richest and most powerful men in the world tucked away in the pristine Pocono Mountains, Summer Place, a retreat for the rich and famous, seems the very essence of charm and beauty, “a scene borrowed from a wondrous fairytale of gingerbread houses, bright forests, and glowing, sunny meadows.”

But behind the yellow and white trimmed exterior lurks an evil, waiting to devour the unwary…

Seven years ago, Professor Gabriel Kennedy’s investigation into paranormal activity at Summer Place ended in tragedy, and destroyed his career. Now, Kelly Delaphoy, the ambitious producer of a top-rated ghost-hunting television series, is determined to make Summer Place the centerpiece of an epic live broadcast on Halloween night. To ensure success, she needs help from the one man who has come face-to-face with the evil that dwells in Summer Place, a man still haunted by the ghosts of his own failure. Disgraced and alienated from the academic community, Kennedy wants nothing to do with the event. But Summer Place has other plans…

As Summer Place grows stronger, Kennedy, along with the paranormal ghost hunting team, The Supernaturals, sets out to confront…and if possible, destroy…the evil presence dwelling there.

MY 2 CENTS / THE CRITICAL POINTS:

WRITING (★★★★): Although a bit slow and repetitive at times, I feel like David Golemon is one of the best haunted house storytellers I’ve read in a long time. I was on the edge of my seat most of the time and even when the story slowed down, at no point was I ready to give up on it. He is descriptive and captivating and makes you feel what his characters are feeling. This is not the book to read at night in a large, dark house by yourself.

STORY (★★★★): I liked how Golemon brought the modern twist of reality television into his traditional haunted house story. It did get a bit repetitive, the same haunting events happened over and over throughout the book… the doors pushing in, loud banging noises, a misty black entity, and the animals in the woods surrounding the house going a bit mad. However, I still loved this story.

When I picked up the book, recommended by a friend, I was expecting to enter a haunted house and be scared. I wasn’t scared, nor did I enter the house never to leave. The story takes you to a number of locations before you’re even allowed inside the house with ‘The Supernaturals’ a group of ghost hunters that have gathered to not only seek out, but to kill, the entity haunting Summer Place.

CHARACTERS (★★★★★): I’m a huge fan of books where the characters have powers. That can mean vampires, shifters, or witches. It can also mean, as in this book the power to dream walk, possession, and to feel or sense the spirits and ghosts among us.

I loved each of the characters that, by the end of the book, were known as The Supernaturals; Professor Kennedy, John Lonetree, Jennifer Tilden, Leonard Sickles, George Cordero, Julie Reilly, Harris Dalton, Jason Sanborn, Kelly Delaphoy, and Detective Damian Jackson.

APPEARANCE (★★★★★): The cover is beautiful. The house looks creepy and the wispy tendrils of light floating around it are ominous. This book was given to my by a friend, but had I seen it on the shelf at the bookstore, I would have picked it up.

QUESTION: My only question is this, why has this book not been turned into a movie yet?

FAVORITE QUOTE: “Now tell me I don’t know how to throw a Halloween party.” ~ Professor Gabriel Kennedy

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

David L. Golemon was born and raised in Chino, California. He come from a family steeped in military history, from the Civil War through to Vietnam. He raised three children, Shaune, Brandon and Katie Anne. After spending many years in Loveland, Colorado, he now makes his home on Long Island, New York.

Check out my YouTube channel and the video review below… and make sure you hit subscribe so you never miss a video.

Also by David L. Golemon:

In the Still of the Night: The Supernaturals II

Set in the world of The Supernaturals, one of Riffle’s Ten Best Haunted House Books of All Time, In the Still of the Night, a supernatural thriller from New York Times bestselling author of The Event Group series David L. Golemon, will make your Halloween extra spooky this year.

Event: A Novel (Event Group Thrillers Book 1)

In the summer of 1947, an unidentified object crashed in Roswell, New Mexico. There were no survivors. Now it’s happened again. But this time, two creatures have emerged from the wreckage alive . . .

Empire of the Dragon (Event Group Thriller)

230 B.C. – The first sovereign emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang, has consolidated his ultimate power with battles against the last of the dissenting tribes of China. With one last province to take, he knows he will be pitted against the one man he fears–his mysterious half-brother, Li Zhang, leader of a peaceful province to the north. The new Emperor’s goal was to murder Li Zhang for the secrets he has kept from the world that would give Qin Shi Huang the power to strike beyond the borders of ancient China. The power over earth, water, fire, and air. After a fierce battle by the Great Wall of China, Li Zhang used the powers of Air Bending to escape with his many villages into the expansive and brutal Gobi Desert. There, Li Zhang and his nation will vanish from the histories of not only the First Emperor, but of China itself.

The Mountain: An Event Group Thriller

In 1863 a meeting takes place between legendary war leaders–a secret alliance that will never show up in any American history books. A clandestine arrangement has been struck for a single chance to heal a war-torn nation. The mission is to bring the greatest prize in the world back to American soil-remnants of pre-history’s greatest ship and most startling mystery. The prize may lie on a mountain top inside the fierce Ottoman Empire, yet the men who seek it are only days away from trying to kill one another.

Carpathian: An Event Group Thriller

Rumors of the seemingly magical victory that allowed the Exodus of Israelites from Egypt have resonated through the archaeological world for decades. Now evidence has been discovered that points to a new explanation of how the ancient Hebrews destroyed the unstoppable army of Pharaoh with a tribe of warriors who disappeared a generation later, after the destruction of the City of Jericho, taking with them the most valued treasures of a people without a homeland.

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#Theredheadedauthor Presents the June 2019 New York Times TOP 10 Best Sellers – FICTION

As an avid reader of fiction (and an author who one day hopes to make the list) I LOVE-LOVE-LOVE checking out the New York Times Best Seller list. So, I’ve decided to start sharing their independently ranked top 10 right here on my website for my readers.

If you’ve read any of the TOP 10 selections and recommend them, please comment below and let me know. If you see something you like and plan to pick up a copy, you can do so by clicking on the title or the [BUY IT HERE] button.

#1 WHERE THE CRAWDADS SING

by Delia Owens

In a quiet town on the North Carolina coast in 1969, a young woman who survived alone in the marsh becomes a murder suspect.


#2 THE NIGHT WINDOW

by Dean Koontz

The fifth book in the Jane Hawk series. The former F.B.I. agent pursues a slew of bad guys, including a Vegas mob boss.


#3 THE 18TH ABDUCTION

by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro

The 18th book in the Women’s Murder Club series. Lindsay Boxer investigates the disappearance of three female teachers.


#4 THE MISTER

by E L James

Maxim Trevelyan inherits several estates and beds his cleaner Alessia Demachi, an Albanian piano prodigy who has been trafficked into England.


#5 PAST TENSE

by Lee Child

Jack Reacher explores the New England town where his father was born and a Canadian couple now find themselves stranded.


#6 REDEMPTION

by David Baldacci

The fifth book in the Memory Man series. The first man Amos Decker put behind bars asks to have his name cleared.


#7 A GAME OF THRONES

by George R.R. Martin

In the frozen wastes to the north of Winterfell, sinister and supernatural forces are mustering. Basis of the HBO series.


#8 BLESSING IN DISGUISE

by Danielle Steel

Isabelle McAvoy faces challenges as she raises three daughters from three separate fathers on her own.


#9 NEON PREY

by John Sandford

The 29th book in the Prey series. Lucas Davenport goes after a serial killer.


#10 THE NEVER GAME

by Jeffery Deaver

Colter Shaw, the son of a survivalist family, probes the underbelly of Silicon Valley to go after a kidnapper.


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Week 18 – #WritingWednesday Challenge

Today is the 18th Edition of #WritingWednesday!!!

Remember, #WritingWednesday is an EASY, STRESS-FREE, weekly writing challenge.

  • Read the writing prompt below,
  • Spend 5 minutes writing (in your own voice or the voice of a character you’re writing) whatever comes to mind,
  • DON’T EDIT what you write! IT DOES NOT HAVE TO BE PERFECT!

The goal is 5 minutes of creativity.

Today I am writing in the voice of Nigel, a character in one of the novels I’m currently outlining.

Today’s writing prompt:

Have you ever experienced something that could not be logically explained?

Something that could not be logically explained? To you or to me? My whole life is filled with things that most humans would say could not be logically explained.

I’m blind. I wasn’t always blind, but when I was seven years old, I drowned. My family was at a backyard bar-b-q at a neighbor’s house, and I was playing with the other kids when I slipped and fell into the pool. I remember the feeling of the cold water rushing around me but after that, nothing.

I’m told I spent six months in the hospital, most of which I was either in a coma or sedated. When I finally woke up, I had lost all vision in both eyes. I couldn’t remember what my parents looked like or even that I had a little brother, only three years old.

My parents sent me away, to a boarding school for the blind. They said it would be the best thing for me—that I’d learn how to deal with my new reality.

I learned.

I trained.

I grew.

My life is different now. I still can’t see, not in the way you do anyway. However, my sight goes so much deeper than yours ever could.

They call me a Precognitive. It’s a fancy word for someone who knows what will come…someone with the ability to see into the future. So you see, my whole life is filled with things that you might say are not logically explainable.

© 2019 Nina Soden

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Alright, now it’s your turn. I’d love to see what today’s writing prompt inspires in you. So, if you are willing, go to the comment section below and start typing. Take 5 minutes and let’s see what you come up with! 

Have you ever experienced something that could not be logically explained?

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Would you like more sources for daily writing prompts? Click on the links below for two of my favorite writing prompt journals. I think you’ll really love them too!

300 Writing Prompts

  • High quality paper
  • 204 pages of cream paper
  • Open Smyth-sewn binding and art board cover
  • Lined with prompts
  • Foil stamping

300 More Writing Prompts

  • Cover style – art board with foil stamping
  • Page color – cream
  • Layout – lined with prompts
  • Paper 204 pages of 100 GSM wood-free, acid-free paper
  • Binding open smith-sewn

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Are you an author who is looking for ways to stay organized and on track with all your writing goals? Check out my author workbooks below. They are full of all the tools I use in my writing process!

Are you working on a manuscript, but need a little help getting organized?Check out SO YOU WANT TO WRITE A BOOK ~ An Indie Author Guide to Outlining and Planning Your Next Novel It isn’t just for indie-authors. I have filled it with all the tools I’ve learned over the years and use on a regular basis with each book I write.

Want help meeting your writing goals? Check out JUST WRITE: The Ultimate Author’s Bullet Journal

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#MindfulnessMonday 6/3/19 ~ Mindfulness Myths!

Today’s #MindfulnessMonday Tip: Remember that mindfulness takes time. Like learning to ride a bike as a young child, mindfulness is a practice that often times leads us to stumble when we’re first learning but gets easier and easier with practice.

Check out today’s #MindfulnessMonday video and hear the truth about 4 mindfulness myths that just aren’t true! You can check out the video by clicking HERE!

Today’s Mindfulness Exercise/Journaling Prompt:

What does ‘MINDFUL’ mean to you?

I want you to write the word ‘mindful’ on a blank piece of paper and look at it. Really focus on the word and how it makes you feel. What does it mean? What do you feel about the word mindful? What other words can you find in its letters? Write the word multiple times to see if it changes how you feel about it. Write it in different ways, fonts, and colors. What does mindfulness represent for you?

After spending a few minutes with just that single word, I want you to write down what it means, to you, to be mindful.

Mindfulness journaling can be very private. However, I would love to invite you to comment below and share what being mindful means to you.

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Check out my #MindfulnessMonday YouTube Series and don’t forget to click subscribe so you never miss an episode!

EPISODE 22 ~ Mindfulness Myths!

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I’m certified in Holistic Stress Management and Mind/Body Fitness. I’ve been practicing Mindfulness for 10+ years and am passionate about helping others in their pursuit of a more mindful existence.

Photo by: Mikel Healy

Would you like to take the 52-week challenge and experience a more mindful existence? Check out The Invisible You ~ 52 Weeks of Meditations, Activities, and Writing Prompts to Help you Discover You!

These are some of my favorite Mindfulness Resources:

Mindfulness in Plain English was first published in 1994, is one of the bestselling — and mostinfluential — books in the field of mindfulness. It’s easy to see why.

Author Bhante Gunaratana, a renowned meditation master, takes us step by step through the myths, realities, and benefits of meditation and the practice of mindfulness. The book showcases Bhante’s trademark clarity and wit as he explores the tool of meditation, what it does, and how to make it work.

This book is:

  • A best-selling introduction to mindfulness
  • Full of practical advice on developing a meditation practice
  • Written in approachable, clear language
  • Containing chapters on loving-kindness and concentration

Practicing Mindfulness

From finding your breath to feeling grounded, these practice-based exercises make integrating mindfulness into your routine easy. With over 75 essential meditations―that take between 5-20 minutes from start to finish―Practicing Mindfulness is an approachable way to apply mindfulness in your day-to-day life.

Reduce stress, improve mental health, and stay present no matter what the day holds when you practice mindfulness, with:

  • Mindfulness 101 that provides clear explanations of what mindfulness is, along with why and how it helps in your day-to-day life
  • 75 mindfulness exercises that are organized by difficulty to help develop your practice
  • Practical advice for overcoming obstacles to your mindfulness practice like how to deal with distracting noises or fight off sleepiness

Today and every day, mindfulness takes practice. Practicing Mindfulness offers effective, modern meditations and exercises to start practicing everyday mindfulness, today.

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