Why We’re Screaming – Lucy Felthouse

The NHS’s Unsung Heroes by Lucy Felthouse

The UK’s NHS (National Health Service) is world-famous, and rightly so. It provides people with the healthcare they need, when they need it, and without presenting them with an enormous bill after the fact, giving them something else—aside from their illness—to worry about.

It gets a bad rap in the media, who pick up on its shortcomings, its wait times, staffing issues, management issues and so on. Basically, all the bad stuff is reported on, and none of the good. The fact it’s free, the fact that the “boots on the ground” work their backsides off to give the best possible care they can to patients.

So I’d like to give a hearty mention here for the NHS’s unsung heroes, who, in my opinion, are the nurses. I’ve spent a lot of time in hospitals, and in particular a chemotherapy unit, over the last few months (I don’t want to go into that, though!), and I’ve seen, first-hand, that those nurses are rock stars. Seriously. These men and women are knowledgeable, professional, caring and always have a smile and a kind word ready for you, and even a hug when you need one. These are people that will bend over backwards to help you, even if something isn’t technically their job. These are people that miss their lunch breaks, that don’t eat until their shift ends because they’re so busy caring for other people. These are people that have doctors asking them questions, asking their opinion, because they know just as much, and in many cases, more than the doctors do. And yet the doctors are lauded as the heroes, while the nurses are painted as just being “there,” doing “stuff.”

It’s absolutely not true. Without those nurses, in that chemotherapy unit and doubtless elsewhere in the hospital, the whole system would fall to pieces. Their work is vital, and they’re bloody good at it. So, although none of those amazing nurses I’ve had the fortune to meet will probably ever see this post, I hope some nurses will, whether they work for the NHS or not, because I want to thank them. Just for being amazing.

To everyone else—next time you meet, speak to, or have any dealings with a nurse, pay more attention. Healthcare wouldn’t be possible without them, so let’s show them some appreciation. They deserve it.

Now I’ve said my piece, onto something a little less emotional… details on my latest release! Also, huge thanks to Cate for letting me be involved in this awesome charity effort for such an amazing cause, and well done on organising it. Please dig deep in the auctions, guys, every penny raised is desperately needed.

P.S. Fuck cancer.

*****

eyeswideopen_800 - CopyAn ordinary girl catapulted into an extraordinary world meets two even more extraordinary men—but what will she do when she discovers their sexy secret?

Fiona Gillespie moved to London shortly after graduating to take advantage of the opportunities the capital could offer. However, months later, she’s still living in a horrid flat and working in a grimy East End pub. The problem is, she doesn’t really know what she wants to do, career-wise. So when she happens upon an advertisement for a job at a plush Mayfair hotel, she jumps at the chance. A great deal of determination and a spot of luck land Fiona her dream role.

But working at the Totally Five Star London is just the beginning. She adores the role and flourishes, impressing her bosses and making her increasingly determined to climb the career ladder.

While her career is flying, though, her love life is non-existent. She hasn’t even thought about men, never mind met or dated one for months, so when she bumps into two gorgeous businessmen in the hotel, she’s surprised to find her head has been well and truly turned. Even more surprisingly, they flirt with her—both of them! She’s drawn to James and Logan, despite feeling that they’re way out of her league.

When a misunderstanding leads Fiona to James and Logan’s sumptuous top-floor suite, she has no idea what she’s about to uncover. Scenes of people-trafficking, drug-pushing and wild sex parties all appear in her active imagination. Yet what she actually sees is something she’d never even considered before, something that piques her interest.

After discovering their sexy secret, what will she do with this new-found knowledge?

Reader Advisory: This book contains scenes of anal play, spanking, sex toys and bondage.

Buy links: http://lucyfelthouse.co.uk/published-works/eyes-wide-open-totally-five-star-london/

Add to Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/26080607-eyes-wide-open

*****

Author Bio:

Lucy_Felthouse (2)Lucy Felthouse is a very busy woman! She writes erotica and erotic romance in a variety of subgenres and pairings, and has over 100 publications to her name, with many more in the pipeline. These include several editions of Best Bondage Erotica, Best Women’s Erotica 2013 and Best Erotic Romance 2014. Another string to her bow is editing, and she has edited and co-edited a number of anthologies, and also edits for a small publishing house. She owns Erotica For All, is book editor for Cliterati, and is one eighth of The Brit Babes. Find out more at http://www.lucyfelthouse.co.uk. Join her on Facebook and Twitter, and subscribe to her newsletter at: http://eepurl.com/gMQb9

Why We’re Screaming: Erzabet Bishop

pomegranate largeCancer is a frightening thing. A couple of years ago I got the scare and it was perhaps the most sobering experience of my life. It was routine annual girlie exam. (I know, right. We all looooove those.) Anyway…the test came back abnormal. I had been diagnosed with PCOS with ovarian cysts. Even more fun. The pain and cramping. The weight gain and tiredness. Who’s body was this? Cause I wasn’t amused. (Still not and still dealing.)

The day came for the colposcopy and I had no idea what to expect. Certainly not what happened. For those of you lucky folk who are unfamiliar, a colposcopy is when they take chunks out of your cervix. Without pain killers. You feel a giant pinch inside of your …um…lady parts shall we say and when all is said and done you feel like a hollowed out gourd. It sucked. A lot.

I went home feeling like The Great Pumpkin and hubby took care of me. My friend from work came and held my hand. She is a nurse and understood the frightening thing this was. Cancer. Wow. Not me. No way. How could that even be possible? I was in my thirties. It had to be a mistake.

Then the waiting…

I got lucky. The tests came back negative with the possibility that I may have to do the test again at some future date. It runs in my family. But there are people all the time that didn’t get that second pass and that’s why I wanted to be a part of Scream for the Cure. Cause I did a lot of screaming when I thought I had it. Turns out I got lucky-this time. But I know there might come a day when it could be a different conversation and I have to put on my big girl panties and deal.

Cancer has taken so many people from my life. My sister in law. My great aunt. My mother in law. But you fight. You live for the people who are dear to you and you go on. Love is a powerful thing. To all of you fighting cancer I send light and love. To the ones left behind, I offer courage and compassion for the days ahead. I hope that my books can give you some laughter and maybe even an urge for ice water.

Love, light and happiness.

Keep on reading.

XOXO

Erzabet Bishop

Erzabet Bishop is an award winning author who loves to write naughty stories. She is the author of Lipstick, Dinner Date, Arcane Imaginarium: Spirit Board, Holidays in Hell, Mallory’s Mark (upcoming 2016),The Devil’s Due (upcoming 2016), Charity Benshaw’s Enchanted Paddle Emporium (upcoming 2016),Tethered, Sigil Fire, Glitter Lust (upcoming 2016), Written on Skin, Club Beam, Pomegranate, Fantasies in Red, Sweet Seductions: The Erzabet Bishop Collection, Holiday Cruise, Fetish Fair, Temptation Resorts: Jess, Temptation Resorts: Marnie, Taming the Beast, The Erotic Pagans Series: Beltane Fires, Samhain Shadows and Yuletide Temptation along with being a contributor to many anthologies. Erzabet has been a finalist in the GCLS awards for 2014 and 2015. She lives in Texas with her husband, furry children and can often be found lurking in local bookstores. She loves to bake, make naughty crochet projects and watch monster movies. When she isn’t writing, she loves to review music and books.
Follow her reviews and posts on Twitter @erzabetbishop.
Links:
Amazon author page: http:// amazon.com/author/erzabetbishop/

Why I’m Screaming – Samantha Bryant

Cancer, Thief of Grandfathers

meandbatman copyCancer is a specter in so many of our lives. I know it haunts me, for the people it has stolen from me. Cancer is one of the meaner deaths, taking vitality and strength away before finally taking life itself. Watching a tough and strong person lose his or her fight can leave you feeling helpless in a way that few things can. You feel like there’s nothing you can do.

The first theft was my grandfather. Ray. It was prostate cancer that stole him, hollowing him out from the inside until he was a husk of himself. I was close to my grandfather. Other than my own father, he was my main model for what a man should be. Sitting in his lap reading, his deep voice vibrating through his chest against my ear, was one of the safest places I have ever been in my life. He supported me in my dreams and aspirations, strong in his belief that his granddaughters would make a difference to the world. His pride in me was a motivator in so many ways. He is part of why I teach and why I write.

I wasn’t there when he died. I was in Alaska, teaching language arts and Spanish at a rural school and living in a community where I might be late to work because there was a moose blocking the path. It was an adventure, and he delighted in the idea that I was having such an experience. He told me not to come back to watch him die. We had said our goodbyes on a farewell tour to Montana the year before. He’d spent some of his youth there as part of the Civilian Conservation Corps, and my family’s last gift to him was a trip, allowing him to see the land he had loved so much one more time.

I missed it when cancer stole another father from our lives, too. My husband’s father fought hard, tooth and nail, through three separate invasions. We were on our way to see him when he lost, too weakened by the earlier battles to win a third time.

Grandpa Fred lived to see his son married to me, a move he approved heartily. He threw himself into being a grandfather to my daughter from a previous marriage and the daughter of his own bloodline equally. I like to think we made his last years better, by bringing him new people to love. He was a wonderful grandfather and father to us, and we feel his loss in our lives every day.

So, yes, cancer has left its mark on our family, like the families of so many people. My daughters missed the chance to grow up knowing these two great men. Maybe there was nothing I could do to save the grandfathers cancer stole from us. That’s why I’ll always support charities like this one. Raising funds for research and study so that, in the future, no one else has to suffer like this? That’s something I can do.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

full-swing-computer-shoes2 copy cover2500 copySamantha Bryant is a middle school Spanish teacher by day and a mom and novelist by night. That makes her a superhero all the time. Her debut novel, Going Through the Change: A Menopausal Superhero Novel is now for sale by Curiosity Quills. You can find her online on her blog,  Twitter, on Facebook, on Amazon, on Goodreads, on the Curiosity Quills page, or on Google+.

Why I’m Screaming – C.E. Kilgore

corinneI grew up with cancer. I didn’t have cancer myself, but it was always there, always lurking. I didn’t have monsters under my bed, I had pill bottles and a vaporizer on the nightstand in the bedroom I shared with my mother. I didn’t have playdates or family vacations, I had trips to the doctors and overnights at the hospital. But I always knew I was lucky – every ‘one more year’ was a victory, we spent so much time together, and I was happy for that.

My mother attempted to give me a normal childhood, but she was limited by her medications, the proximity to her doctor and the gage on her oxygen tank. It was the 1980’s, and cancer treatment was limited to high-dose chemo, medications that did as much harm as good, and a lack of the cancer-specific treatment centers that they have today. When I was nine, her body had given all it could give. Cancer didn’t care that she had been a nurse, a mother, a devout Christian. It took everything, and left nothing.

For a while, I thought my life with cancer was at an end.

At age nineteen, cancer knocked on my door again. And like last time, the deliveryman wasn’t for me. My father had kept it hidden for a few years, but it quickly snowballed into a debilitating decline. It wasn’t the 1980’s, though, so there were all kinds of new treatments and possibilities, and he tried all he could – including something to do with bee stings. Unfortunately, access and cost is still a major issue for those with cancer. He went through every penny had, but in the end only gained a few extra months. Cancer didn’t care that he had been a race car driver, a man of fire and passion, who had plans to die on a speedboat named Beyond Reason. It took everything, and left nothing.

He would have been sixty-five this October.

I’ve talked to my doctor. I know my odds. Genetically speaking, I’m a time-bomb waiting to go off. Cancer will knock again, and one day it will be for me. I don’t know when, and I don’t know what I’m going to do when it does.

What I can do is hope. I have hope that organizations and events like Scream for the Cure will help to raise awareness. I have hope that advancements in medical science will continue to offer new treatment and chances for cures. I have hope that insurance companies and drug companies will work together so that a person’s life is not dependent on how deep their bank accounts are. I have hope for the future, because when you live with the shadow of cancer in your life for so long, you learn that hope is what will one day defeat it.

Thank you to everyone who has donated to Scream for the Cure or other cancer causes. And thank you to all the wonderful authors who are supporting this!

C.E. Kilgore
http://www.cekilgore.com

Why I’m Screaming – Nancy Fraser

Why an Author Screams … Nancy Fraser

“Cancer is a word, not a sentence.” – John Diamon

Like a number of the other contributors before me, I too have been touched by this dreaded disease. And on numerous occasions. My father and his four brothers all died of some form of cancer. The beloved cousin I grew up with battled it four separate times, the very last recurrence claiming her life.

In June 2012, endometrial cancer came knocking at my door. I was lucky…if there is such a thing where cancer is concerned. We caught it early and, fortunately, even my recovery was uneventful and did not require chemo. You can bet I book my yearly follow up like clockwork.

Not long after I was diagnosed, my good friend and occasional writing partner, Patti Shenberger, discovered the colon cancer she’d defeated years earlier was back. With a vengeance. Patti was a mentor to dozens upon dozens of aspiring authors. She presided over the Greater Detroit Chapter of Romance Writers of America for a number of years and, in that time, worked tirelessly for the benefit of its members. She was an inspiration to many because of her knowledge of the romance industry, as well as her kind and generous spirit.

 Patti & Me

Despite her own setback, Patti was my cheerleader through my diagnosis, surgery and recovery. We continued to work on our joint project and were well into the third book of our post-Civil war series while Patti’s illness continued to progress. In addition to our writing, we also shared the title of grandmothers to two beautiful baby boys. Aiden was her first grandchild, William my fifth. When writing and editing became too much for her, Patti’s emails to me became all about her family.

In early April of 2014, Patti made the hardest decision of her life … to stop the chemo that was making her weak and unresponsive … so that she could live out the remainder of her time in the comfort of her home surrounded by friends and family. And, even though we lived over a fifteen-hundred miles apart, I made one last trip to visit her. We shared some take-out, a lot of wonderful memories, and a final hug.

Less than a month later, she was gone. She left behind a loving family, hundreds of friends, over 500 Facebook followers, and scores of writers who benefited from Patti’s expertise. It’s only fitting that I write this column today, October 7th, because it would have been Patti’s 55th birthday.

As much as I miss my family members taken by this horrible disease, as much as I feared for my own life, losing Patti has left both a personal and professional hole in my heart.

For those of you who have been touched by cancer, please know you are not alone. We are all there with you in spirit. For those who have not felt cancer’s icy grip, count yourselves lucky beyond belief.

Author Bio:

NancyFraserLike most authors, Nancy Fraser began writing at an early age, usually on the walls and with crayons or, heaven forbid, permanent markers. Her love of writing often made her the English teacher’s pet, which, of course, resulted in a whole lot of teasing. Still, it was worth it.

Published in multiple genres, Nancy currently writes for four publishers. She has published twenty-two books in both full-length and novella format. Nancy will release her 25th book in 2016. She is currently working on a Valentine’s Day novella, her next Rock and Roll novella, and a story about a racy Scot titled “Kilty Pleasures”.

When not writing (which is almost never), Nancy dotes on her five wonderful grandchildren and looks forward to traveling and reading when time permits. Nancy lives in Atlantic Canada where she enjoys the relaxed pace and colorful people.

Media:

Website: www.nancyfraser.ca

Blog: http://nancyfraser.ca/wordpress/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/nfraserauthor  @nfraserauthor

Facebook: http://facebook.com/nancyfraserauthor

Why We’re Screaming: Lia Davis

It seems that everyone has been touched by cancer at some point in their life. Whether it’s them or a family member or a friend, we’ve been touched with the stories. It’s the fighters and the survival stories that keep the hope alive. With charities like the one we are supporting with this auction, research and new developments are possible.

My BIL was diagnosed with colon cancer about 6 years ago. Typically men don’t get checked until they are 50. He was in his late 30’s. Good thing for him he has family who hounded him to go see a doctor when he complained about some pain and discomfort. We’re all blessed that he caught it so early.

One of the most important things we can do is press our loved ones (and ourselves) to receive care at the first signs of discomfort or illness. Something that seems so small can lead to something much bigger. Early detection is a HUGE part of beating cancer.

Bio:

In 2008, Lia Davis ventured into the world of writing and publishing and never looked back. She has published more than twenty books, including the bestselling A Tiger’s Claim, book one in her fan favorite Ashwood Falls series. Her novels feature compassionate yet strong alpha heroes who know how to please their women and her leading ladies are each strong in their own way. No matter what obstacle she throws at them, they come out better in the end.

While writing was initially a way escape from real world drama, Lia now makes her living creating worlds filled with magic, mystery, romance, and adventure so that others can leave real life behind for a few hours at a time.

Lia’s favorite things are spending time with family, traveling, reading, writing, chocolate, coffee, nature and hanging out with her kitties. She and her family live in Northeast Florida battling hurricanes and very humid summers, but it’s her home and she loves it! Sign up for her newsletter, become a member of her fan club, and follow her on Twitter  @NovelsByLia.

Social media links:

Website: http://www.authorliadavis.com/

Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/mBWx5

Facebook author fan page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Author-Lia-Davis/137761469629592

Facebook Fan Club: https://www.facebook.com/groups/368820509920377/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/novelsbylia

Tumblr: http://novelsbylia.tumblr.com/

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/liadavis35/

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5829989.Lia_Davis

Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/Lia-Davis/e/B007Z0BH7S/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0

About.me: http://about.me/AuthorLiaDavis

Get your eBook personalized at Authorgraph. http://www.authorgraph.com/authors/novelsbylia

Why I’m Screaming: Pippa Jay

pippaHi, I’m Pippa Jay, author of scifi and the supernatural with a romantic soul. For last year’s Scream! For the Cure I talked about losing my mum to cancer when I was nineteen and she was just 43. I say ‘just’ because that was the year I turned 43 myself, with so much I still wanted to do and my children not yet teenagers. Not that I’m superstitious, but this is the first time I’ve been glad to be another year older. I’m 44. I’ve had a year longer than my mum got.

But sadly cancer has affected my family more than once. At the start of 2002, my husband and I were delighted to inform his parents that we were soon to make them grandparents for the first time.

It seemed the happiest day of our lives. But my father in law was already showing symptoms that said all was not well. It progressed from growing indigestion that became more persistent, to trouble swallowing, eating, and keeping food down. Never one wanting to be a bother, his few visits to the doctor resulted in various indigestion remedies that didn’t help until he reached the stage of barely being able to eat at all and a call for an ambulance in the middle of the night.

Only then was he taken seriously. But it was already too late. His stomach cancer – left undiagnosed over those few months by his GP – had reached an untreatable stage. All that could be done was to make him as comfortable as possible in a local hospice. A few days later he passed away, and it wasn’t peaceful or pleasant.

It’s the first time I’ve actually watched someone die. Their pain. Their last words. Seen the light go out in their eyes and their body go still. I wouldn’t even wish watching a loved one die on my worst enemy.

His last wish was to live to see his first grandchild. He didn’t make it. He died three months before my daughter’s arrival, early as she was. All because a doctor was too busy to take a minute to really listen to his patient and do a few tests. The lack of value placed upon a human life is just horrifying.

So this is why I’ve supported Scream! For the Cure, and why I will continue to do so.  For those whom might lose that battle, I’d love to see them have some happiness during their darkest hours.

Bio:

After spending twelve years working as an Analytical Chemist in a Metals and Minerals laboratory, Pippa Jay is now a stay-at-home mum who writes scifi and the supernatural. Somewhere along the way a touch of romance crept into her work and refused to leave. In between torturing her plethora of characters, she spends the odd free moment playing guitar very badly, punishing herself with freestyle street dance, and studying the Dark Side of the Force. Although happily settled in the historical town of Colchester in the UK with her husband of 22 years and three little monsters, she continues to roam the rest of the Universe in her head.

Pippa Jay is a dedicated member of the Science Fiction Romance Brigade, Broad Universe, and EPIC,  blogging at Spacefreighters Lounge, Adventures in Scifi, and Romancing the Genres. Her works include YA and adult stories crossing a multitude of subgenres from scifi to the paranormal, often with romance, and she’s one of eight authors included in a science fiction romance anthology—Tales from the SFR Brigade. She’s also a double SFR Galaxy Award winner, been a finalist in the Heart of Denver RWA Aspen Gold Contest (3rd place), the 2015 EPIC eBook awards, the 2015 LERA Rebecca, and the GCC RWA Silken Sands Star Awards (2nd place).

You can stalk her at her website, or at her blog, but without doubt her favorite place to hang around and chat is on Twitter as @pippajaygreen.