A Little Late but Still Thankful

This year Thanksgiving somehow snuck up on me. (Yes, snuck is a real word) I mean, I knew it was coming and everything, but one minute I had time to do things and then all of a sudden, I didn’t. And I forgot all about my Thanksgiving post!

To be honest, I’ve just had too many things on my mind. The biggest, most important of those things is that my oldest daughter is having surgery on Monday. It’s scary. Because of the physical limitations (pain, kidney damage, other things) the cause of the surgery placed on her, she was fired from her job. Now her employer isn’t cooperating with EDD and is likely to contest my daughter’s unemployment claim. She has no income right now, has not been able to look for a new job because of her physical condition and upcoming surgery, and will probably have at least two weeks of recovery before being able to look for work again. The whole situation is worrying, to say the least.

On a more positive note, the new paperback edition of Bronze in in final formatting mode and should be available soon with the e-book following right after. I’m excited to say that the e-book will have a brand new cover, possibly the paperback too. I’m keeping my hardback cover and will continue that theme through the series with the hardback releases, but will have alternate covers for at least the e-books. I can’t wait to see what my designer comes up with!

Copper is in good shape and I’m working on it every day, but I still can’t give a finish date. I refuse to rush it. All I can say is, it’s almost finished. Really. Please hang in there with me. And I promise the third book won’t take anywhere near as long to release.

I’m also going to be working on some Glister related short stories that I plan to offer as free downloads. If you’ve read Bronze, who would you like a story about?

So what am I thankful for this year? Everything!

I’m most thankful for my wonderful family: my son and daughters, my daughter-in-law and grandson and new granddaughter on the way (so exciting!), my oldest daughter’s boyfriend and his family, who have embraced her and by extension us as a part of their family.

I’m thankful for my eighty-year-young aunt, my only other relative in this country, healthy and still working in Hollywood.

I’m thankful for my incredible friends, a couple of whom I’ve known almost all my life. Thank you for ALWAYS being there!

I’m thankful for my job and my wonderful students. There are aspects of my work that have been extremely difficult this year, but for the most part I still get up on work days looking forward to seeing and working with my students and excited for what we can accomplish.

I’m thankful for my new apartment. I’ve been here almost a year now and it’s been the best place I’ve lived in a really long time. It’s small but reasonably priced (for the Bay Area), in a nice community (with security) and relatively quiet (which is a HUGE issue for me.)

I’m thankful to have lost some significant weight this past year, which I’ll probably write about in a post in the New Year. I’m feeling better and healthier than I have in many years.

I’m also thankful for this writing journey I’m on, and for all of you who are coming along with me. I get discouraged sometimes, doubtful of the value in what I’m doing, and wondering what the heck was I thinking when I started this. But all I have to do is think of some of you who have been so kind to me and my book, read over some of the reviews, and it pumps me up again.

So thank you! I hope to get to know more of you in the coming year.

It’s my Thanksgiving post tradition to include a Switchfoot video, so here you go. Have a great weekend!

Writing: Copper.

Listening: Need new music!

Reading: Crooked Kindom by Leigh Bardugo

Watching: Dr. Strange and Fantastic Beasts.

Visit theglisterjournals.com for news, excerpts, and more about The Glister Journals series.
Reviews for Bronze (The Glister Journals, Book 1)
Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller or purchase now at Amazon.com

All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2016 to B B Shepherd.

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A Thanksgiving Post

This Thanksgiving finds me in an unusual situation. In fact, this whole year has been more unusual than most. I normally cook a big dinner with at least my daughters here, sometimes their boyfriends too. It’s one of my few real social times – at least in my own home – and also one of the few times I really cook anymore.

This holiday season, for the very first time in my life, I’m living completely alone, not counting the cat (Buu). I don’t dislike it, but it’s strange and I miss having someone I’m completely comfortable with (besides Buu) to interact with on a daily basis. I’m also in the middle of moving. When I say “middle,” I mean that I had started moving, but it’s been put on hold. So half my stuff, including my kitchen table, chest of drawers, bookcases and almost all my books, are in storage waiting for the final move. That was originally supposed to be in November, then mid-December, and now…I don’t know. Most of the rest of my things, including way more clothes than I thought I had, is boxed or bagged already and stored in my daughter’s old room. I kind of like all the extra space I have in my apartment now, but I was really hoping to be in the new place before Christmas. I’m going to at least put up my Christmas tree this weekend. That’ll make it feel more like it’s still home.

Anyway, I’m not in good shape to entertain at all, though the daughters, individually, do come down to spend time with me, which I love. The youngest, Mary, will spent the night with me last night and is hanging out today. This afternoon/evening we’ll go up to San Francisco to have dinner with my other daughter, Elizabeth’s, boyfriend’s family. It’s so sweet of them to have us. We spent last Christmas Eve with them too – a lovely Italian family. I mostly feel like a fish out of water there, my neurology and culture at odds with the loud, somewhat crowded situation, but I’m really looking forward to it. They’re awesome people and I’m honored to be included.

My son, Joshua, is doing well in his new job in Iowa, and his wife and my grandson seem to have settled in very well too. He was recently able to buy a house with the help of his grandfather (his dad’s father) and will be spending his first Thanksgiving and Christmas with his family in their very own home. That’s so wonderful.

And it feels like winter! We appear to have had some frost on the roofs last night and it certainly felt cold. We love that. And the recent rain has bee such a blessing. Our hillsides are already showing a sold greenness. We’re praying for a lot more rain . . . we need those reservoirs and watersheds filled up here in California!

So . . . Thanksgiving. I’m so thankful for so many things. My children. My job. My relative health. My home, even though it’s a little weird right now. I’m thankful for friends, online or otherwise, especially those who have been so supportive of my writing and so patient, too! I do promise things are moving ahead and being completed!

I don’t get caught up in all the drama (seems to be more and more every year) about the historical validity or cultural appropriateness of the national holiday. I am thankful every day. At least I try to be. But I will continue to “celebrate” Thanksgiving as a day to formally and intentionally set one day apart for specific and targeted gratitude. For reflection on the past year – all its trials and blessings – and give thanks for making it through. I’m not always happy, but I want to always be grateful.

Happy Thanksgiving my friends. I hope your day is peaceful and joyful and that you eat too much and sleep soundly.

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com New edition coming!

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister info and excerpts at the book’s website here: theglisterjournals.com

All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2015 B B Shepherd and China Blue Publishing.

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Happy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving came early to my house this year. As both my daughters work in retail, getting the same day off is a miracle in itself. This year my older daughter, Elizabeth, was able to come and stay a couple of nights. She came on Sunday so we had our family dinner on Monday. Mary, my younger daughter who lives with me, had to work. Fortunately, she worked early so was able to be home for dinner. Unfortunately, she began feeling feverish Sunday night and by the time she got home from work on Monday, she didn’t feel up to eating much.

I’d been cooking all day. I usually try to get some things prepared the day before, but what with one thing and another (cleaning!), I didn’t. We stay pretty traditional with our holiday meals, but some of that tradition is very English. Dinner was roast turkey, stuffing with sausage (casserole), roast potatoes and parsnips (covered in butter/marmite), roast carrots and yams (in an herbed oil), cauliflower and broccoli, and home made apple sauce and gravy. Apple crumble and custard for dessert. Yum!

I was also supposed to skype with my son and his family (in Washington) but we didn’t get to it. We keep saying we will do this skype thing, but it never happens. Either things get too busy on this end or his internet’s down. So today, actual Thanksgiving Day, I hope the stars are aligned and I’m able to see and spend time with my son and his family.

Late on Monday we learned of the violence breaking out in Oakland, uncomfortably close to where Elizabeth lives and works. I have no opinion on the right or wrong of the actual incident – I am completely unqualified to judge the tragedy that incited the violence – but empathize with the feelings of outrage, oppression, helplessness. I don’t empathize with the violence, property damage, and fear the “protestors” are subjecting innocent local people and businesses to. That’s not the way to gather support for anything. You become the thing you hate and are despised and mistrusted in return. Where’s the sense in that? I was glad that Elizabeth was right here with me, but I had to take her home, a small minority member in her neighborhood, while violence was still happening just streets away. I’m always praying for her safety, but have never had so much cause.

The shame is that the genuine protestors are probably not the ones doing the damage. Just like the ridiculous mobs and vandalism after the Giants won the World Series. It’s doubtful the real fans were a big part of that. It’s opportunists taking advantage of any excuse to damage and steal the property of others. It’s nothing to brag about or be applauded for. It doesn’t matter how unjust the issue is. You’re just hurting more of the people you claim to be protesting for. The people in your own neighborhood. Your family.

Which leads me back to Thanksgiving.

I am most thankful for my family. My three children. Life isn’t always easy – can be downright brutal at times – and I have lots of other reasons to be thankful, but they are the most precious to me. I’m thankful everyday for them. Twenty-four-seven. We’ve been through a lot together. I want to be here for them; they are always there for me.

I’m thankful that after years and years of very hard times, things are going pretty well for everybody. My son spends most of his time being a full time dad and working on music and online business. My grandson, Odin, will be two years old early next year and is adorable and healthy. So is his lovely mom. Both my daughters just transferred to brand new stores (different stores, same company) and are guaranteed full time – no mean feat in this economy. The oldest is now a supervisor but both hope to work into management. I hope that, regardless of how they all earn a paycheck, they are able to exercise their creativity. They’re all extremely talented but also probably all affected, to one degree or another, by autism, like me.

It’s challenging, but I’m not complaining. I’m extremely thankful.

I’m also extremely thankful for the people who have taken interest in my writing and befriended me online. I don’t really know you, but your opinions and support are important to me. Thank you! And yes, Book Two really is coming. I promise.

So whether you have religious or cultural reasons to celebrate today, or don’t celebrate at all, I wish you a peaceful day and hope you can focus on the things you can be thankful for. And, as is my Thanksgiving blog tradition, here’s some Switchfoot. Happy Thanksgiving from California!

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister info and excerpts at the book’s website here: theglisterjournals.com

All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2014 to China Blue Publishing.

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I’ve been working on several posts that I just don’t seem to be able to finish, so they are going to wait. Today I will just be thankful. In no particular order:

I’m thankful that I am healthy. I don’t take as good care of myself as I should, as I used to, but I have no major health issues. The minor things I can live with or try to improve through diet and exercise. And sleep. As much sleep as possible.

I’m thankful for close family bonds. I don’t have a lot of close friends, but I’m very close to my children and they are very close to and supportive of each other. I am immeasurably thankful for that. And I am very thankful for my friends too!

I’m thankful for a wonderful book blog tour this fall. I’m especially thankful for the wonderful people I met and hope to stay in touch with, and all the people who have shown interest in Bronze and the series. Thank you!

I’m thankful that, so far, most people that have actually read my book like it! I actually haven’t heard from anyone that doesn’t like it, but I’m not going to assume there are none!

I’m thankful for my job. My five-day-a-week daytime job that pays the bills and allows us to eat. Not the writing which, so far, hasn’t paid for anything. But I’m not about to give it up. It has become a huge and necessary part of my life.

I’m thankful for fond memories. I focus on these. I have a lot of bad ones too–the kind that can keep you awake at night–but I choose to not think about those. I’ll let them be buried in my subconscious and only pull them out and look at them if they can be useful.

I’m thankful that I live in a country that still allows freedom of faith. I sometimes wonder how much longer those freedoms will exist, but they’re there at the moment. I think. I’ll believe in my God anyway, come what may.

I’m thankful for my ridiculously silly and cute cat. He’s such a sweet companion…except when he thinks I’ve forgotten his dinner or that I’m ignoring him. He complains loudly in the first case and “tags” me with claws out in the second!

Thankful for Buu

I’m thankful that I’m just as excited about my book series, The Glister Journals, as I was when I started it. Even if it’s taking me FOREVER to finish the second book. It WILL get finished!

I’m thankful for music. Pure and simple.

And, according to my tradition, here is some Switchfoot for you. Happy Thanksgiving!

Posts coming soon:

    A Cataclysmic Music Review
    Retro Thursday
    Chabot Space and Science Center

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister info and excerpts at the book’s website here: theglisterjournals.com

All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012-2013 to China Blue Publishing.

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Still Thankful…

I can’t believe I haven’t posted since September. Time has gone by so fast! I’ve been writing a lot–I actually got about nine pages of the second Glister Journals novel written just today–so that is my excuse. There are still so many things I’m working on; things for the series’ website especially. I plan to get some more chapters up there and here before Christmas. I still have some blog posts that need finishing too, but would like to get something out for Thanksgiving.

I thought I’d revise my Top Ten Things I’m Thankful For list from last year, but in looking it over, I realize that I don’t need to change a thing. Everything there is still true–nothing to add and nothing to take away. So I’ll share some videos with you instead. My Thanksgiving gift to you. 🙂

First, something ridiculously cute to put us in the right mood:

Second, a much anticipated (by me!) movie:

Next, an awesome video game in development which I’m supporing on Kickstarter (go check it out!) This is the latest video update:


And finally, since I ended the last Thanksgiving post with Switchfoot, I will end this one with them too. I think I shall make it my Thanksgiving blog tradition. Whether you celebrate in a special way or don’t celebrate at all, have a wonderful day!

All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012 to China Blue Publishing.

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister info and chapters at the book’s website here: theglisterjournals.com

The chapters can also be read here at the top of my blog. (and also in a menu in the sidebar!)

And please “Like” us on Facebook!

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The Top Ten Things I’m Thankful For

I try to keep a thankful spirit every day–when I don’t it’s easy to become discouraged and even a little bitter about some things–but regardless of historical accuracy or religious background, I see value in having a specific day set aside to really consider what it means, and what I’m thankful for. Some of these things may seem silly and I could probably come up with a much more impressive list, but this is pretty true for me personally:

10. My cat. Yes, I could live without him, but he’s a lot of fun, very cuddly and talkative, and sometimes my only companion.

9. My car. I bought it used and now it’s paid off. It’s a plain, little economy car, but I love it. I’ve had it for seven years and it’s never failed me!

8. My (formal post-secondary) education. It was hard-won, but I’m glad I got it! It has certainly opened doors for me that wouldn’t have otherwise, and also validated and intensified my existing curiosity. I’ll be actively learning the rest of my life!

7. This goes along with number 5 but is not necessarily related:
Enough money to pay the rent. There’s not always a lot left over, but I have a roof over my head!

6. My health. It’s true that you don’t really appreciate your health until something starts to go wrong. In spite of “minor” annoyances like aches and pains and seemingly ever-increasing food allergies, I stay pretty healthy. I’m very thankful for that.

5. My job. Just the fact that I have one. I also really enjoy it. A lot of people don’t (on both counts)and I know what that’s like.

4. Music. Can you imagine life without music? Like life without food or oxygen!

3. Friends, old and new. You know who you are!

2. My family. For always being there, keeping me company, making me laugh, and loving me as I am.

1. God’s grace. What a basket case I’d be without it. Then again, perhaps I am a basket case and just don’t know it. In which case, I’m thankful for that!

What are you thankful for?

I don’t have a “Thanksgiving” song, but here’s
one off Switchfoot’s latest CD:

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

All original text and materials by or commissioned by B. B. Shepherd are copyright 2012 to China Blue Publishing.

The Glister Journals: Bronze can be purchased through any bookseller, or purchase now at Amazon.com

Reviews for The Glister Journals: Bronze

More Glister info and chapters at the book’s website here: theglisterjournals.com

The chapters can also be read here at the top of my blog. (and also in a menu in the sidebar!)

And please “Like” us on Facebook!

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