Video: The Life Enthusiast Chronicles Anniversary

A year ago I started a monthly series on this blog, The Life Enthusiast Chronicles, an inspirational project where I asked awesome humans from around the world to answer one simple, yet poignant question.

What makes you enthusiastic about life?

The Life Enthusiast Chronicles has gone above and beyond what I could have ever imagined. This project has had a positive rippling effect throughout the blogging community and beyond.

So I have decided to continue the series as long as the inspiration is still humming along.

Today I’d like to celebrate the one year anniversary with you all in this special video I put together. Not only is it an inside look into how the series began, it is also a loving thank you to the 11 wonderful people who contributed their beautiful words to the series this past year.

Please enjoy…

Nola Fran Evie…The Bloopers

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Over the years I’ve created several very, very low-budget  online videos.

One such tradition is creating a happy dance every time I reach a followers milestone on this blog.

A few months ago I surpassed the 500 mark (woot!). I made this fancy finger dance video with the same red satin gloves worn on the cover of my first book, Beneath the Satin Gloves. The stage was a picture frame covered with a fluffy black bath towel and a lace shawl for dramatic effect.

That’s right, kiddos. I’m the Repurpose Queen.

This is the minute-long “masterpiece” you saw…

What you didn’t see…the hours of cussing that went into making that video.

Even me, a lifelong dancer, was forgetting my freaking finger choreography. Dammit!

Since I was kneeling on the floor—in my jammies, I might add—behind the frame, the chintzy stage kept collapsing. Shit!

And right when I had the perfect take, the gardeners struck up outside of my apartment with their ear-splitting background music. Dammit, shit, and some other ladylike words I won’t share.

Another tradition I slave away at are book trailers for every release. In these videos I give behind-the-scenes tidbits in the hopes that readers will connect with the inspiration of the story and take a chance on one of my books.

But I’m not talking to real humans, I’m talking face to face with my smartphone camera. Nope, it’s not easy.

I’ve been thinking about doing a bloopers reel for some time. But I always shied away from the idea for two reasons. Firstly, video editing, though I’ve learned to enjoy it, is quite time-consuming. Secondly, would anyone even think it’s funny?

Well, hell if I know! But this time I made the blooper reel anyway for NOLA FRAN EVIE.

Because nobody’s perfect, and I’m certainly not. So why not have a few laughs?

If you missed it, here’s the seemingly flawless book trailer…

And what really happened, the bloopers…

 

 

 

Nola Fran Evie is Now Available

I’m gonna be candid right now. Writing my first two books was a damn struggle.

The first, Beneath the Satin Gloves, took me three years to finish. I didn’t know what the hell I was doing and I certainly didn’t believe in myself. With the support of my husband and my own stubborn determination, I powered through until the day my shaky finger clicked the publish button.

The second, Everything’s Not Bigger, only took me six months. This book was purely written as therapy. Deep soul-searching was done during this time and though it has been less popular, writing the story was the release I needed to enter a new chapter in my life.

So, I wrote a third…NOLA FRAN EVIE.

I didn’t struggle with this one. Discovering clues from 1954 in a vintage handbag provided succinct inspiration for a story that I knew I was fated to write.

I had a flow, an unstoppable rhythm that moved me.

And most of all during this third round of self-publishing, I had all of you out there. My second year of blogging has brought so many phenomenal humans into my life. The positive spirit of the writing community continues to astound me each day.

Without my husband, my family, my friends, my bloggers, and my readers…finishing another book would never have been possible. So, thank you.

Now I must call upon my beautiful community to help me with the final stages of this project. For today I am releasing NOLA FRAN EVIE into the world.

I have poured all of my energy into this story for the last year and a half of my life. As an indie author I have no team to do my historical research or market my book to the masses.

Yet I also know that I am not alone.

You are all a part of my team. I would be forever grateful for any support you can offer with this book release in the form of reading it, sharing it, and reviewing it.

Because this is a dream I will continue to cultivate. And hey, life is something to celebrate and we can always use one more story.

Without further ado, I am beyond proud to bring you…NOLA FRAN EVIE.

Nola Fran Evie Cover Master SmallThey were unladylike rebels, three young women abandoning rolling pins for baseball bats to join the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. They changed history and that changed them. After the league folds in 1954 Nola, Fran, and Evie meet by chance on a popcorn-scented summer day where it all began…Wrigley Field, Chicago. They team up once again to fight for a pivotal cause these dames can only win by uniting as one.

Inside these ball players lies a fierce beauty, an unconventional destiny beyond the kitchen. Foregoing the American dream of sparkling cars and pastel suburbia, together they face up to the reality of nuclear drills and civil rights. Their story is uncovered nearly forty years later when Jacks Demonte discovers a trail of clues tucked away in a vintage handbag. The extraordinary lives of these women intersect with Demonte’s as she falls deeper into a heroic past.

BUY IT NOW AT AMAZON

In Celebration of 500 Followers…A Happy Dance!

Some of you have known me to be a performer of thank you happy dances on this blog.

There was the very first happy dance, which I definitely feel is one of the most embarrassing videos I’ve ever posted. In this happy dance, I channeled some sort of globe-loving Vanna White character. It was odd, but you all continued to like me despite the weirdness at play.

Next there was the second happy dance, when I reached 100 followers and went all out with “The Artist” inspired rendition. I began to discover a strange love for video editing around this time, so it’s pretty fancy. This was also Hazel the cat’s first video appearance. I know, I know…she totally steals the show.

It’s been a while, almost two years, since I’ve done such a goofy thing. While I was moving across the country a few weeks ago, something truly awesome happened.

I reached 500 followers on my teeny blog!!!

I wanted to thank you all properly for your incredible support and encouragement. Blogging isn’t an easy thing to keep up with, but you all keep me going with your fun-loving selves.

Every day I have the privilege of connecting with beautiful people from all over the world. This community that we share continues to astound me with its loveliness. I’m so happy to be a part of it.

Again, thank you so much! Here’s my gift to you…

 

The Urge to Dance

Once upon a time I called myself a dancer. I danced my whole life until the end of last year when quite suddenly…I stopped.

No more teaching, no more leotards, no more performances. Just like that.

Such a monumental transition in my life was very hard for me to swallow, and most of 2013 was spent figuring out who I was beyond the dancer. When you’ve been doing something for over twenty years, it has a way of becoming a part of you.

I wrote I Found Some Change, which some of you may remember, when it all happened.

Recently Mr. H was out of town and I had this crazy urge to dance.

It was dark, the cats were asleep, and uncharacteristically I felt  lonely. So I threw on jeans and a tank top, some music, and filmed this in one shot.

It wasn’t about choreography or perfection, it was simply about moving.

Mr. H threw in some nifty video effects after he saw it. So even though we were apart when it started, we came together to create something in the end.

The video is silent, due to music rights mumbo jumbo that I didn’t want to mess with on YouTube. But I realized that the silence itself was beautiful, because when I move everything becomes still and quiet. The music, even the sound of my own breath.

This project taught me that entirely letting go of something isn’t always the right thing to do. The dancer is still inside and I’m OK with it being right there.