How to keep busy when the apocalypse is nigh

If you’re practicing social distancing like I am (it sounds so much better and more altruistic than “I’m a boring introvert who doesn’t want to leave the house”) and don’t know how to pass the time, here’s a handy bullet point list of things to do 😁😆

  • Notice how dusty your house is when the sun shines for the first time in forever
  • Make a cup of tea and try to ignore the dust
  • When you realize the dust really is EVERYWHERE (gaaaaaaah!) make a playlist full of songs that makes it impossible for you to sit still (today’s playlist at the end of this post)
  • Turn up the volume on the stereo (preferably a portable one you can bring along with you around the house) and start the playlist
  • Tackle the dust

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(Why do I have to dust the whisky shelf? I don’t even drink whisky!)

  • Scrub the bathroom
  • Scrub the kitchen
  • Break for lunch
  • Sort papers, like old bills and stuff like that, and throw away whatever you don’t need to keep

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(Isn’t it great that we brought old bills from 2012 with us from Malaysia. Very necessary!)

  • Organize the papers you do need to keep
  • Organize the bookshelf and get rid of eyesores like this: photo_2020-03-16_17-08-09
  • Speak with your daughter on the phone for close to 2 hours
  • Plan your upcoming WIP

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  • Make dinner
  • Vacuum your office
  • Crash on the couch

Tomorrow is for book reading 😄

Stay safe ❤️

Here’s the playlist:

playlist 200316

 

Feelgood re-reads and sweetness

Hi everyone! I hope you are all well and staying safe, and I hope your loved ones are well and staying safe, too. I’m well, and my family is, too. I barely leave the house, but that’s nothing extraordinary for me: I’m an introvert homebody who’d prefer to never leave the house, and have to mentally prepare even for mundane stuff, like going out and getting groceries 😀

Yesterday, I was convinced I had contracted the virus (despite only going to the grocery store this week where I didn’t interact with anyone) because I had trouble breathing, which is a warning sign. And then I remembered that I have allergies, and that spring is coming. Malaysia doesn’t have spring, so I’ve forgotten what it feels like after 8 years in a tropical climate. So I popped a pill, talked myself down from the ledge, and this morning when I woke up, I felt perfectly fine again.

So, I decided I need to step away from all the frantic reporting. It’s not like I’m hiding or ignoring the news, but I need a breather. Besides, I trust my husband to inform me if the end is nigh and I need to find the nearest bunker.

So what do you do when you need a breather from the apocalypse? Read, of course!! So I went to my trusted “feelgood re-reads” list on Goodreads and picked a few books that always make me feel better. I thought I’d share them with you, if you also need to take your mind off things.

feelgood

A Second Harvest if you want age gap and slow burn. Cultivating Love if you want to read about an established couple’s deepening relationship. For A Reason if you want the MCs to meet early in the book and then read about how they make a life together. Galaxies and Oceans if you want to read the most romantic book on the planet and want a huge dose of hurt/comfort. Jesse’s Diner if you want to read about a guy who really doesn’t get when he’s being flirted with. And Let Your Heart Be Light if you want fluff.

Buy links:

A Second Harvest | Cultivating Love | For a Reason | Galaxies and Oceans | Jesse’s Diner | Let Your Heart Be Light


And if it’s sweetness you need, I’ve been known to write a sweet book or two.

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Maybe a cute, fluffy, possessive bunny shifter?

Amazon | JMS Books

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Or maybe a brother’s best friend story with corny horoscopes and a butterfly that sort of looks like BB8?

Amazon | JMS Books

Cover blurb review quote

Maybe you want to read about two guys in their late forties finding love? Also, there is an ex-wife in this story, but she’s NOT a shrill bitchy harpy – on the contrary 🙂

Amazon | JMS Books

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Or if all you have is a few minutes to yourself: a shorty (just under 5K words) about an established couple and a dilemma?

Amazon | JMS Books

Or check out all my books over at JMS Books. Most of them are sweet and cute and fluffy.

Updated blog

I’ve been neglecting my poor blog badly these last few months, but now I’ve finally given it some of the love it deserves. I’ve updated the coming soon section and removed the Christmas stories that have been released for months and months now and replaced them with Late Night Poetry. I’ve also updated the my books section and made sure all my published books are now on this tab.

On top of that, I’ve added a completely new tab. Looky here:

Inkedtropes_LI

I’ve named it tropes because I wanted something short and snappy, but what it really is is genres, tropes, and themes. What I’ve done is categorizing my stories by genre, trope, and theme, much like fanfiction stories are organized on sites like AO3. (Look here for example if you don’t read fanfiction.)

The reason is that sometimes I (and I’m assuming I’m not the only one) just feel like reading a trope or theme and I wish that all books came with tags like the fanfiction ones, so this is a step towards that. I realize people can think this method is spoiler-y, but as someone who doesn’t hate spoilers (on the contrary, I seek them out) it’s perfect. But, if you’re a spoiler-hater, I recommend you don’t click the tab 😀

I will add more themes/tropes/genres as I write them.

If you’re not afraid of spoilers, clickety-click the tab and tell me what you think! 🙂

Life update

It’s been a month since I updated you on my life after the move, and things are less chaotic these days. The house is mostly done and my office is fabulous. Wanna see?

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I haven’t really gotten used to having my own space yet; my desk used to be crammed between the couch and the dining table in the living room, so having all this space to myself is fabulous…and weird. But I’ll get used to it 🙂

So, what have I been doing, this last month in the cold and darkness of Sweden?

glögg

I’ve been drinking lots of glögg of course, because I’m a huge fan. I’ve had it just by itself, or with saffron buns and gingerbread cookies as in this picture.

julgran

I went to my daughter’s place and helped set up the tree. The theme for this year is velvet baubles and homemade old-fashioned garland 🙂

lucia

I woke up early on December 13 to watch Lucia, and had a traditional – and very nutritious 😀 – breakfast: tea with clementine, gingerbread cookies, and skumtomtar (it’s candy, literal translation is ‘foam Santas’, but check out this link if you’re curious.) 😀

adventskalender

…and I’ve been enjoying the advent calendar my daughter gave me. It’s not a traditional one with one door each day leading up to Christmas, rather it’s one envelope to open on every advent Sunday, and the envelope contains a tea and a Swedish classic short story in a tiny format. I’m loving it so hard. This is the third envelope and the tea tasted of oranges, and the short story by Agnes von Krusenstjerna was wonderful, and the ultimate proof that you don’t need more than 27 tiny pages to make Nell Iris cry in her tea.

So as you see, I’m surviving the cold by various hot beverages and lots of candles. I’m liking it 🙂

How is your December so far?

 

My chaotic life

Hi everyone. I’m in Sweden now…or actually I’ve been here since November 9th, but my life has been a giant whirlwind of chaos since I arrived. Who ever said it was easy moving across the world? No one? Okay, sounds about right.

I thought you might like to see a few pictures, if for no other reason than to feel sorry for me and my current situation? 🙂

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We brought a few bags with us on the plane, heh. Not more than about 250 pounds worth of stuff. Uuuuugh, that was no fun at all.

When we landed, we stayed at a hotel first because we didn’t get the keys to our new place until the 12th. And after that we stayed for a few more days because we had lots of admin stuff to do (like visiting the Swedish version of IRS to write ourselves back into the country and a gazillion other equally unfun things) and couldn’t focus on moving in.

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When we got the keys, we didn’t have any stuff (except for the 250 pounds of stuff we brought on the plane, but we couldn’t sleep on any of that) so we went to Ikea to buy what we decided not to bring on the boat and instead buy new here.

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…and we bought all the things. And this wasn’t even half of it. We had to go back the next day, and then they didn’t have what we needed so we ended up ordering some stuff online that will be delivered on Saturday. A new desk for me, among other things. Can’t wait!

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After all the unpacking, it looked like Ikea had vomited on our living room floor.

photo_2019-11-19_13-25-53And this is the current state of affairs while we wait for the container of stuff to arrive from Malaysia (on or around December 7). How do you like our very fancy dining table?? 😂 But at least we have a new (very nice!) bed to sleep in, enough things to cook with, and this table is better than having dinner on the floor, don’t you agree?

But OMG I miss my things. My desk things, my books, my vinyl records. My fancy office chair. My teas! So if someone could please tell the boat transporting our things to hurry, I’d be forever grateful! 😀

1994

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It’s Midsummer’s Eve 1994 and I’m 22 years old. I’m spending the day at the beach with my friends from the amateur theater group I was a part of. We’re doing typical Swedish midsummery things. Eating and drinking. Singing. But also being deep and artsy, because we were actors after all.

1994 was the year I played Titania (and Hippolyta) in Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and my husband (who wasn’t my husband at the time) played Bottom. 1994 was the year me and my theater friends arranged a Shakespeare picnic by the lake; we borrowed costumes from the theater company so we could dress accordingly, and pretended we were a part of our favorite movie Much Ado About Nothing.

1994 was also the year we had a Rocks-themed party, and if you don’t know what “Rocks” is, it’s a song by Primal Scream that we loved to death. We listened to that song over and over and over again, and thought Why not have a Rocks party? We did play other songs at the party, too, but not a lot of them 🙂

In 1994 I dreamed of becoming an actor so I applied to several acting schools, but was never admitted. It was a time of happiness and friendship and immersing myself in art and theater and music and classic English literature.

That was a time that laid the foundation to who I am today. No, my dream is no longer to be an actor, but I still want to immerse myself in art and music and books. 25 years later, I’m still deep and artsy and pursue difficult dreams.

But who would we be without our dreams?

Tell me something about you from 25 years ago.

Release day: In My Arms Again, and Legendary Loves volume 2

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Trapped in a growing sense of restlessness, Oxen the hunter is lonely. Feeling like he’s waiting for something—or someone—he’s unable to focus on getting ready for winter. But when a handsome and very ill stranger collapses on his doorstep, everything changes.

The stranger, Vinge, is from a Pegasus family but has never been able to transform. As soon as he awakens, both men feel an instant connection, and it grows deeper as Oxen nurses him back to health. Something profound within each man calls out to the other, but neither of them knows what it is.

The questions surrounding Vinge and their deepening relationship are many. Why is Vinge so familiar to Oxen when they clearly have never met? Why are they both reluctant to take the first step to a real commitment?  And what will it take for the true depth of their connection be revealed?

21 809 words / M/M historical fantasy paranormal

BUY LINKS (IN MY ARMS AGAIN)

JMS BOOKS | AMAZON | AMAZON UK |  KOBO | APPLE BOOKS | B&N | SMASHWORDS | GOOGLE PLAY

add to goodreads

Released individually, but also included in Legendary Loves volume 2, with two other stories. All new releases are 20% off at JMS Books for the first week after release.

BUY LINKS (LEGENDARY LOVES VOL 2)

JMS BOOKS | AMAZON | AMAZON UK |  KOBO | APPLE BOOKS | B&N | SMASHWORDS | GOOGLE PLAY

Addison promo 3

JMS Books’ Trios are themed collections of three gay romance stories by a trio of authors. Each story is available separately, but readers can get all three for a discounted bundle price.

Legendary Loves Volume 2 contains three paranormal shifter M/M romances just in time for Halloween! Contains the stories:

In My Arms Again by Nell Iris: Oxen is lonely, feeling like he’s waiting for something, and can’t focus. But when a very ill stranger collapses on his doorstep, everything changes. The stranger, Vinge, is a Pegasus unable to transform. Both men feel an instant connection that swiftly grows deeper. The questions surrounding Vinge are many. Why is he so familiar? What will it take for the depth of their connection be revealed?

The Murky Depths by Kassandra Lea: Tired of the daily grind of his job, Keston heads out for a weekend at his family’s cabin in Kona Woods. Turns out he isn’t alone, though, as there are others lurking in the shadows. When a near-death experience brings Ness waltzing into his life, everything Keston thought he knew is turned upside down. Will facing what scares him bring to Keston’s life what it’s missing most?

Weekend at Bigfoot’s by Addison Albright: There’s nothing about perky — twinky? — Oliver Hughes that would make Sensational News’ (Never Fake! We Swear!) reporter Wilson Banks think Bigfoot actually exists. But while pursuing soundbites for a tabloid story about Bigfoot, Wilson witnesses something he wasn’t meant to see. In Wilson’s new reality, is there room for love with someone whose dreams are as big as his … er … feet?

BUY LINKS (ALL 20% OFF AT JMS BOOKS UNTIL NOV 25):

The Murky Depths | Weekend at Bigfoot’s