Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Ways to Reduce Stress

S.R. Karfelt, Ways to reduce stress, the glitter globe
The Glitter Globe/S.R. Karfelt

Stress reduction is my superpower. The trick is to think outside the box. Way, way, way outside the box. I’m an introvert. Too much peopling makes me tired. Supposedly extroverts get energy being around other people, but introverts get drained. I find that to be true. But I love people, so I regularly jump into the fray until my life force is drained and I must recharge.

These are some of the things that I do when I just can’t.

Mental health days. I have been known to spend an entire day in my pajamas lying on the floor in front of a space heater. Usually I’m reading, because when you just can’t, it helps to change universes via a book. A movie can work too, but books work better. I don’t know why, but they do.

Media blackout. No news via any medium. Once I went four years in a media blackout. I missed the entire first four years of the Obama administration. True story. I was running a photonics business, writing a novel, and homeschooling. There was no room at the inn for anything else. I told you this was way outside the box. I’m serious. AND ignorance is bliss by the way.

Clean. This is usually my very last resort. I hate cleaning. I’d pretty much rather do anything on the planet other than clean, but when I do it I feel more prepared. Getting rid of piles of junk or messes makes me feel better. Sometimes I’ll just clean one cupboard or my closet. Anything.

Nap. Sleeping helps. I don’t think any of us get enough sleep. Sometimes I go to a monastery and just stay for a couple of days. (You can do that at a Benedictine monastery by the way, the cost is nominal and they’ll even feed you.) The monks have said that when people come for a retreat usually they’ll spend the first day or so just sleeping, then apologize for it. But they say that is what you need and the first step to finding some peace. So sleep. Just check out for a while.

Sleep with your partner. And by sleep I mean don’t sleep. It helps if you can get away for a day or so. That’s ideal because then you’re not looking at your messy house or the to-do list. Sometimes that’s not possible though, so your home might have to suffice. Shut off all the electronics, and the lights too if the mess is making you nuts. Then smooch that face.

Do something nice for someone else. This only works if you do it anonymously. Shovel their driveway. Catch their runaway dog or their garbage can blowing down the street. Let someone else have that great parking spot. It doesn’t have to be big or cost anything. But it feels good when you’re tucking down for bed at night and you can remember that one nice thing you did today. I’ll warn you that this one is contagious. You’ll start looking for opportunities.

Make something. Paint. Draw. Decorate. Write. Create. Whatever gives you satisfaction. Creating something goes a long way toward assuaging stress. Creativity = Purpose = Inner Peace.

Stress reduction, especially emergency stress reduction when you’re at maximum load, seems to me to be different than doing things to cheer yourself up. Things like dancing, retail therapy, or a day out with friends. Those things can cheer you up, but I’m talking metal-on-metal, bone-on-bone stress, and genuine ways to recharge when your batteries are completely drained.

Leave a comment if I missed any!

Friday, January 27, 2017

In Which I Publicly Discuss Books I Plan to Release This Year

This isn't something I normally do. I prefer to quietly leave my books in the world, and get back to writing the next one. But it's the middle of the night, and this reveal suddenly seems like a good idea. Let's hope my muse and the real world cooperate with me. Like that has EVER happened. But infinite universe and all of that.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

All The Books Releasing Today That I've Already Bought

The Glitter Globe, S.R. Karfelt, Karfelt,
The Glitter Globe/S.R. Karfelt

A stolen crown. An unbreakable friendship. One big mess in the making.

When Princess Cecily Degalt travels south to wed a prince she's never met, she's ushered into a strange new world alongside her best friend and bodyguard, Rory Castille. With an MIA fiancé, his handsome twin brother, and a kidnapping gone wrong, life in Myrzel isn't quite what Cecily expected.

Rory will do anything to keep Cecily from harm--but when Rory's darkest secret comes between her and Cecily, the greatest danger to the princess might be Rory herself.

Torn apart for the first time, each girl will have to think like the other as she faces not only the darkness of Fangralee Forest, but a dangerous enemy closer to home.

A Stolen Crown is the second novel in the Stolen Royals series - a tale of magic, intrigue, and the power of true friendship.

A debut historical fantasy that recasts Jane Austen’s beloved Pride & Prejudice in an imaginative world of wyverns, dragons, and the warriors who fight alongside them against the monsters that threaten the kingdom: gryphons, direwolves, lamias, banshees, and lindworms.
They say a Rider in possession of a good blade must be in want of a monster to slay—and Merybourne Manor has plenty of monsters.
Passionate, headstrong Aliza Bentaine knows this all too well; she’s already lost one sister to the invading gryphons. So when Lord Merybourne hires a band of Riders to hunt down the horde, Aliza is relieved her home will soon be safe again.
Her relief is short-lived. With the arrival of the haughty and handsome dragonrider, Alastair Daired, Aliza expects a battle; what she doesn’t expect is a romantic clash of wills, pitting words and wit against the pride of an ancient house. Nor does she anticipate the mystery that follows them from Merybourne Manor, its roots running deep as the foundations of the kingdom itself, where something old and dreadful slumbers . . . something far more sinister than gryphons.
It’s a war Aliza is ill-prepared to wage, on a battlefield she’s never known before: one spanning kingdoms, class lines, and the curious nature of her own heart.
Elle Katharine White infuses elements of Austen’s beloved novel with her own brand of magic, crafting a modern epic fantasy that conjures a familiar yet wondrously unique new world.

But can she find her identity in the light
Before she perishes in the dark?

Twenty years have passed since Carrington and Remko Brant’s baby, Elise, was kidnapped and they were forced to leave her captive in the Authority City. Though they fled with the Seers far from Authority reach, they’ve never given up hope of rescuing their daughter from the man who betrayed them. Now Authority President, he’s ushered the city into a new era of “peace”―one where the Scientist Roth Reynard’s Genesis Serum has eradicated all memory of emotion or rebellion.

But the mysterious Aaron and his Seers are once again on the move, threatening the illusion the Authority has worked so hard to build. As the Seers send seven chosen warriors to rescue Elise and bring restoration to the Authority City, the lines are drawn for a final battle between light and darkness. The key to ultimate victory may rest within the strangely powerful girl who has felt forgotten but was never abandoned―a truth she’ll need to wage war against the powerful forces of evil.