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Friday, December 18, 2020

Drawing a Blank

 The eighteenth of every month is my day to blog. Some months I have a topic or at the very least, an idea. This month I got nada, nothing, just an empty mental jar in need of ideas. 

For an author, that's bad. Stress flares and the inner voice grows more demanding, berating you with "Think. Think. You gotta have something." 

Of course, the effect is you have nothing and nothing can or does spring to mind.

So, you try to do some activity to distract yourself or hopefully, find inspiration: Social media, games, reading, talking, or Hemmingway's solution--a drink. 

But maybe no ideas present themselves. So then what...Well, nothing. 

Life is stressful. We are living during a pandemic, people are sick, too many have died, people have lost jobs and are worried about caring for families.

I wish I had a solution. I won't tell you it will be alright. I don't know that but I hope that it will be. 

Maybe, you'll do what I and others do: take a breath, scream out the frustration. 

Hopefully, a solution will come to you and make life less stressful and life, yours, mine, ours, will get better. 

That's my holiday wish for all of us in 2021. A better life.  

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Friday, December 4, 2020

Friday, November 27, 2020

Holiday Season stories by Janice Seagraves



I have two holiday season stories:


Year of the Cat 

starts out during the Christmas Season, even though I never say it is.

 Morgan isn’t expecting romance when she accompanies her friend for a week of skiing, but when she meets Jared all bets are off.
Haunted by the loss of his parents, werecat Jared Catterick earns his keep working for the Catclaw Clan. Jared has secrets that he doesn’t mind sharing with a special lady, and he hopes Morgan is that special someone. When his past and present collide it’s worse than he imagined, and he’s forced to fight for his life.


And Matrix Crystal Christmas.

 Matrix Crystal Christmas is made up of two short stories (one erotic and one sweet) for the fans of my novel, Matrix Crystal Hunters, who told me that they wanted to know what happened next.

In Crystal Flower Christmas: Vach and Maya are on a mission to undam the Laonooco River for the drought stricken region. As heartache fractures their marriage, will the gift of a crystal flower mend their relationship or break it beyond repair?

In Crystal Clear Christmas: Plague has struck the village of Zama and the citizens blame the only human left on Zenevieva, Maya. Will Vach make the ultimate sacrifice to save his wife?

Unfortunately, I don't have anything currently published that has a Thanksgiving Dinner, although I had a short story published that had one. 


How about you?

Do you have a story that covers a Thanksgiving Dinner? Or do you have one about Christmas?

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

That's Inspiring!

 I was mulling over the topic of this post and kept on coming up with absolutely nothing. Then I was reading a book with a quote before the first chapter. This post topic came to me. I swear I saw the lightbulb turn on. 

So, I decided to share some quotes that have always inspired me, changed me, or in so way or another helped me.

1. The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. 

British statesman Edmund Burke wrote this one. I first heard it in college during an International Relations class. If you look throughout history, these words ring so true. The action a person takes against evil doesn't have to be grand or violent. It can be as simple as speaking out against evil, voting, or boycotting a business. Good in the world never hurt. 

2. For most of history, Anonymous was woman. 

Virginia Woolf penned this one. And as a woman, I refuse to be anonymous. I use my voice and live my life not by what society deems important but I follow my heart. I wanted to be an author and that is what I did. I refused to sit at a desk, working 9-5. I wanted to follow my passion so I did. Women are using their voice, fighting for their rights, and living their best life so never stop doing it your way.

3. A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction.

Another Virginia Woolf quote. I have the room and have money to pay my bills and buy books. I don't need much more.  I also took this quote as a warning to prepare for the life you wish to live. 

4. There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it. 

 A favorite author of mine wrote this one--Edith Wharton. This one reminds me to be a light in the world. I will try to spread the light not diminish its glow. 

Do you have a favorite quote or two? Please share.   


Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Hautned House by Janice Seagraves

Hi, my name is Janice Seagraves. I write romance of various genres.

I used to live in a haunted house.



Since my husband and I first moved into that house, I’ve heard a little girl crying when I washed my hands in the bathroom. Which isn’t anything unusual, however we live two miles out of town in the middle of what had been a grape vineyard but is now an almond orchard, and we have no close neighbors. I’ve lived here for twenty years and heard the same child sobbing. Reason would dictate that if this was a child, it would be grown up by now.

Once when my daughter was still a newborn baby, she started to cry. I was sitting next to my husband, watching TV. I sighed and started to get up, when I heard a woman’s voice saying very clearly, “Hush, baby.” I ran into the bedroom, and my husband ran outside. When I turned on the light, the baby was asleep, and no one was there. My husband came back inside and told me no one was outside.

While my daughter was a baby, she would sleep with us, I would feel the bed dip like someone was sitting down. I’d open my eyes to see if my husband were putting on his shoes, but the baby and I were alone.

Over the years I, my husband and my daughter have seen a little girl ghost at different times and places in the house. One time while my daughter was sleeping with me, she screamed in the middle of the night. I jerked awake and turned over, that’s when I saw the little girl ghost sitting on my bed on the far side of my daughter, staring at me. Then she faded away.

When my daughter was little about three or four, she had an invisible friend named Jenifer or Jenny, which I later realized was our ghost girl.

Once or twice I’ve heard a scary voice saying my name and a chill would wash down my back. Thank goodness I haven’t had that in a while.


I’ve been woken up by the sound of my bedroom door being opened and when I got up, it was closed. That just happened the other night. I got up again to look and no door was open.

We’ve seen orbs. Mostly green ones and blue ones. I saw one in the bathroom and followed it into my daughter’s room, where it landed on the foot of her bed and disappeared. 

I have taken a few orb photos with our black kitty we used to have, and I have an earlier photo with a white something that went through my husband’s mouth. These photos were taken with two different cameras, one digital and one a 35 mm.

When my husband worked nights, sometimes I would see something under the fitted sheet moving back and forth. I thought maybe a mouse got into the mattress. My husband and I flipped the mattress over, and I couldn’t find any mouse holes, so I have no idea what that was.

One morning, I was woken up by a child singing the song called the Lilac Tree. Both my husband and daughter were in the living room watching Saturday morning cartoons. And nothing they watched had a child singing.

I’ve been woken up by the smell of brownies and thought my daughter was baking. I got up to go into the kitchen and no one was cooking. Boy was I disappointed.

One time when I overslept, I heard someone walking around my bed and a voice saying, “Come on, honey, it’s time to get up.” When I got up, no one was there.

My daughter told me one of her friends that spend the night had heard the bathroom door creak open and the sound of whispering. The friend asked my daughter if her parents were up. My daughter said no, and then they both went and checked the bathroom. No was there.

My husband and I both heard the whispering voices before, right when we got home from shopping. We quickly open the front door to the house, flinging it open but the noses stopped and no one was there.

A few months ago when I just lay down to go to sleep, I felt someone tuck in the tag on my pajamas top. My bedroom door was closed, and hubby was working the graveyard shift and my daughter was staying the night at a friend’s house.

I was alone.

Or was I?


Janice’s website:


Morgan isn’t expecting romance when she accompanies her friend for a week of skiing, but when she meets Jared all bets are off.
Haunted by the loss of his parents, werecat Jared Catterick earns his keep working for the Catclaw Clan. Jared has secrets that he doesn’t mind sharing with a special lady, and he hopes Morgan is that special someone. When his past and present collide it’s worse than he imagined, and he’s forced to fight for his life.

Sunday, October 18, 2020

I've Seen It All

 I live in the Big Apple so I’ve been quarantined since February. Luckily, I haven’t been infected with Covid-19 however, I’ve been reading a great number of books, redecorated my bedroom, and watched a lot of TV and streaming a great deal. Now, that we’re in October, I feel as if I have seen everything on that is on TV, Hulu, Netflix, and every other streaming service available. 

There have been some movies and shows that I enjoyed but the best show I have seen is Ted Lasso that is available on Apple TV. It is a heartwarming, uplifting show that even in the sad moments still fills you with warmth. So, if you haven’t yet, check it out. 

But that’s not what I want to talk about. I’m talking about boredom. There are so many available channels that now it feels as if there is nothing to watch. There is a theory (though I can’t remember its name) that states that with many more choices, we are overwhelmed and can’t make a choice. Right now, I’m stuck in the middle of that theory, watching repeats or movies I haven’t seen in a while. But my to-be-read list is dwindling and I’m finding new authors. 

How are you handling this scary time? Stay healthy and safe. 


Friday, September 18, 2020

I've Got No Idea


For creatives, a stressful time isn’t when you’re on deadline or in the middle of a project. That is altogether a different feeling. The most stressful time is when your mind has no ideas. A blank mind raises stress levels to a point that anxiety turns into panic attacks—that writer’s block. 

That’s the point I am at right now. I have ideas but my mind can’t seem to develop the idea into something even resembling a story. So what is a writer to do? 

The answer is easy. Nothing. 

This allows my mind to destress and it takes away my stress so that my mind can then focus to the point that I can write a story. 

Everyone has their own way of dealing with creative blocks and my solution may not work for you so do you have any advice to share?  

Friday, August 28, 2020

Needless Words by Janice Seagraves

I did a video on Needless Words on YouTube and how much better your writing is without them.

Please like, share, and leave a comment.

Thank you.


When going through my first edits, I overused 'and'. I hadn't realized that I'd used 'and' so much until my editor sent back my manuscript with 'and' highlighted and it was all over the place. I know now how to eliminate most of those, but not then.

Sometimes shorter punchier sentences work best.

Later, on another edit, I was given a list of overused words.


And then I learned about filter words and I had more words to avoid using:



Removing these words and letting the sentences stand as is, works remarkably well.


Example: I felt her hand gripped mine.

Correct: her hand gripped mine. 


And now, about my books.

I'm running a sale during the pandemic. Most of my books are only .99 cents. 

Please check out my books on Amazon, Smashwords, and Barns and Noble.

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Back To School and Start Anew.

It's Back To School season and this time of year always has me reminiscing about my school years. When the most important tasks were choosing this year's backpack, notebooks, pens, binders, and all the other stationery delights that awaited. I think of this time almost as if it's the teenage equivalent of New Year's Eve. A time to start over, begin anew, and with all the unknown promise that a new year holds. For me, school was the last century. The 90s to be exact and my school experience wasn't the stereotypical one. I attended a private, all-girl, Catholic high school. We had to wear wool kilt skirts and button-downs with Peter Ran collars. But as teenagers, we still yearned to express ourselves by bending the dress code rules. 

So, we rolled up our skirts that were supposed to reach our knees so we could show off more leg. Of course, the nuns would tell us to unroll them. We did for a moment only to roll them up again once we were out of their sights. Another way to liven up our uniforms was through tights, colorful and stylish, we sought ways to reveal our characters. After all, the white knee-highs were standard uniform. I think back to those times and see how little rebellious details revealed our character—the girl who rebelled (me) and the girl who followed the rules, the classic styled girl and every character that could be found in the world. A time when teenage girls were exploring the world and discovering where we all fit in it. Even with all the teenage angst and uncertainty of the world, we stepped forward to find our place, to carve our path. 

And we did with uniforms that got us detention or at the very least, a reprimand but we learned to be bold, be ourselves. 

So, what was high school like for you? Do you have memories that fill you with nostalgia?

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