Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Are you Giving Birth or Publishing a Book?

I am preparing for the release of my second book in The Returns series. I thought it would be less nerve wracking than when I took the blind leap into the world of self-publishing for the first time last November. I find that while my eyes are opened quite a bit wider this time around, it is still a very scary prospect. The best way to describe it is to compare it to the birth of my second child. That may seem like a strange comparison but I’m sure other authors who are also parents will be able to relate. For all of you who can’t, let me try to explain…

Of course, the conception is still the most thrilling and earth shattering part of the entire process.

The First Trimester:
You are excited at this new addition to your life! Soon, you’re plagued with questions. Are you ready for the additional responsibility? Do you have enough time and love to share? What if you fail miserably the second time around or make mistakes? This is a time where you get sick to your stomach, run your hand through your hair, smile, and shake your head. There are many days of self-doubt and sleepless nights. This is definitely not as easy as everyone makes it look. How do people survive with having dozens? Your excitement wanes.

The Second Trimester:
You get to feeling better and your confidence is soaring. The nausea is gone for the most part and your energy has returned. The thrill and excitement are back! The time will fly by now. You seem to be cruising right along. This baby will be done before you know it! A third is one is certainly possible. Your first one is doing great and people are saying wonderful things, which build your confidence. Oh, life is great!!

The Third Trimester:
Well, the time is crawling at a snail’s pace. You are certain that there is no light at the end to the tunnel. The closer the end comes, the more nervous you get. What if there is something horribly wrong with it? You have a great doctor (editor) and you trust their judgment so why are you still worried? Why does it take so long? Are you ever going to get everything ready? Is it too late to back out? Yes, it’s way too late soooo…

Delivery Date:
Ok, you simply cannot put it off any longer. It has to meet the world! You pray it will be a smooth and wonderful delivery. This second “”baby” already has a special place in your heart and you love it unconditionally. All you can do from this point is hold your head high, smile, and welcome the new life you created into the world.

Now, of course there is a huge difference in giving birth to a child and publishing a book. However, the point I’m trying to make is the feelings of uncertainly and doubt plague us in any new endeavor. The best we can do is simply the best we can do. My book, Showstoppers should be released in the next couple of weeks. My nerves are frayed but I’m definitely more excited than scared. I am much wiser than I was this time last year and with wisdom comes confidence. Like any experienced parent, by the time my third book is ready for publishing; I’ll probably not even break a sweat! Yeah, right!

**Recipe of the Day**

Fried Dill Pickles

•1 jar dill pickle spears
•1 cup flour
•1/2 cup plain yellow corn meal
•1 tablespoon seasoned salt
•1 cup milk
•Vegetable Oil to cook in
•Ranch Dressing for dipping

1.Pour vegetable oil to a depth of at least 1/2 inch in medium sized skillet and place over medium high heat. Drain pickles and place spears on paper towel lined plate to absorb moisture while you prepare breading.
2.Place corn meal in small bowl. Add 1/2 cup flour and seasoned salt. Stir until well combined. In separate bowl, pour remaining flour and place milk in third bowl.
3.Using your hands, dip a pickle into milk, then flour, then milk, then cornmeal breading. Repeat until all pickles are breaded.
4.Carefully place pickles into hot oil and cook until browned, stirring once if needed, about ten minutes.
5.Remove from skillet and place on paper towel lined plate. Allow to cool for a few minutes before serving with ranch dressing.
These are extremely hot inside for several minutes after cooking.
Makes about 8
You can also do this with dill pickle chips *

***Pet Care Tip of the Day***

Spaying & Neutering

Spaying is a general term used to describe the ovariohysterectomy of a female animal. Neutering is a general term used to describe the castration of a male animal. However, neutering is often used in reference to both genders. The surgical procedure, performed by a veterinarian, renders the animal incapable of reproducing. Here are answers to some questions you may have about this beneficial procedure.
When can I have this procedure done?
Both procedures can safely be performed at as early as 8 weeks of age. American Humane Association is a strong proponent of juvenile or pediatric spay/neuter since it is both healthy for pets and effectively reduces pet overpopulation.
Why should I have my pet neutered?
Animal shelters, both public and private, are faced with an incredible burden: What to do with the overpopulation of dogs and cats that they cannot find homes for? Approximately 3.7 million animals are euthanized at shelters each year, due to the sheer fact that there are not enough willing adopters. Having your pet spayed or neutered ensures that you will not be adding to this tremendous burden.
What are some of the health and behavioral benefits?
Through neutering, you can help your dog or cat live a happier, healthier, longer life. Spaying eliminates the constant crying and nervous pacing of a female cat in heat. Spaying a female dog also eliminates the messiness associated with the heat cycle. Neutering of male dogs and cats can prevent certain undesirable sexual behaviors, such as urine marking, humping, male aggression, and the urge to roam. If you have more than one pet in your household, all the pets will generally get along better if they are neutered.
A long-term benefit of spaying and neutering is improved health for both cats and dogs. Spaying females prior to their first heat cycle nearly eliminates the risk of breast cancer and totally prevents uterine infections and uterine cancer. Neutering males prevents testicular cancer and enlargement of the prostate gland, and greatly reduces their risk for perianal tumors.

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