book

Dreams Road Sign with dramatic clouds and sky.

The purpose of having dreams

Blah, 2016 did not start well for me. I mean, all the problems I’ve had so far have been first world problems, but since I live in a”first world” I tend to consider them to be actual problems.

I’ve been stuck deliberating at what point will I give up on my dreams. When will I just say, you know what, I’m done. I am done trying. My dreams of becoming a published author (Idk, self-published on Amazon just doesn’t have that ring to it), dreams of becoming a good illustrator (not great, just good- even solid is ok with me), dreams of having all the stories I keep having in my head read by hundreds of people.

They are ambitious dreams to have, I realize that. Not many are fortunate enough to ever get loyal readers and most of their books, their stories end up in a folder called “my book” on their computer where it sits as a sore reminder of unfulfilled dreams.

However, I realized this the other day as I was jotting down the first few lines in my new diary (it’s really pretty, a little old school but I don’t mind it)- I realized that succumbing to reality is why you should never let go of your dreams. Perhaps you should modify them, change them, alter them, make a few alterations here and there but no one should ever give up on their dreams. Because if you give up on your dreams, you let reality win- and reality can be so dull, so cruel and so factual. And I refuse to ever be dull or cruel or factual. Ever.

Picture Credit

the old owls tales

The Old Owls’ Tales

Much like humans find wisdom and advice in the tales of the Old Wives, animals have the Old Owl’s knowledge which is widely shared when growing up. These tales were shared with me in the past few months in relaxed, yet intimate conversations with some very lovely owls in an undisclosed location.

Illustrations can be followed on my Instagram account leahrennes (and will be posted on WordPress sometimes too) and they are a celebration of a goal I set only in August of this year and I think have achieved quite well so far.

Before August, I would draw a cow and it looked more like an elephant. After doing the 30-day challenge by Mark Kistler “You can draw in 30 days” book, I not only realized drawing is something that can be taught (and don’t necessarily rely solely upon talent) but I also gained great confidence drawing. Suddenly, I can draw images for my stories which is something I though would be never able to do. Sure, I still need to practice but I have come a long way.

“The Old Owls’ Tales” are a result of the learning process and confidence I gained in the last two months. I hope you enjoy the illustrations and don’t be shy to follow.

And as a slight preview of today’s post- bring an umbrella if you see a worried bunny- according to the Owl tales, it means it is most likely to rain.

 CYMERA_20150908_172314

eiffel

Can an author sell books at all without harassing friends/family for likes or paying for promo?

It’s been a year and I have not sold a single book yet. I’ve had free promotions on Amazon and people have read them. You see, when I started out I decided I was not going to harass my friends to like my Facebook page or have them write reviews for me on Amazon. I wanted to do it clean. I wasn’t going to pay for ads to get my book out there. So many online blogs recommend having a blog to get readers, make sure you format the book right and have it proofread…. and you’re set.

When I got my first and only review, I cried. It was positive, but apparently they still found mistakes. I ran proofreading program more than a dozen times and mistakes still happen. I’ve been editing the book to make it better.

When I came out with children’s books and had free promotions I asked for reviews (good or bad) but there has not been any feedback. It is so hard to not feel like my books are just a needle in the Amazon hay.

I guess what my question to those successful authors out there is (assuming my books don’t suck) is what else do they recommend doing? Or should I cough up the money for promotions?

4078-beautiful-christmas-night-800x600

Merry Christmas! (Not happy Holidays)

America is getting too politically correct. Why is it so wrong to wish somebody a Merry Christmas? You are wishing something nice. Something positive. The last time I checked merry meant “cheerful and lively, characterized by festivity and enjoyment.”

I don’t get upset if somebody wishes me Happy Hanukkah or Happy Kwanzaa. I am neither Jewish or Black, but I can always appreciate a good wish.

So Merry Christmas to everyone. I hope you spend some quality time with your family. I almost have a 100 followers which makes me really happy. And, I sold ONE book since I published it on Amazon (and no, it wasn’t my Mother since somebody from the U.K. bought it….thank you reader!!)

In the spirit of happiness, you can get my book on Amazon for FREE only today! It’s a great read, specially for your teen or college kid. I would appreciate if you leave a critique on Amazon if you read it, good or bad, I would just like to hear everyone’s feedback.

OK, no more computer for a couple of days. MERRY CHRISTMAS!!! ❤

Picture Credit

Julius Caesar and sexual innuendo

Surprisingly, I am so desensitized that highly elegant “til sweat drips from my b*lls” lyrics don’t phase me anymore. I have learned not to expect much from artists which call themselves “Pitbull, Tank, or Shorty Shitstain”…..
However, every now and then, the impoverished lyricism of today’s writers really grinds my gears. I was driving to Miami, nervously switching radio stations in the hopes of finding a song I could listen to… when I came across a Pitbull song. One of the lines uttered in his pretentious baritone was “I saw, I conquered, I came.” Dear Pitbull, “VENI, VIDI, VICI” is representative of an achievement, a historic moment that changed history. Caesar beat Pharnaces II in war….what any other horny teenager, and you, apparently, are so proud to be able to do, is not victorious or glory worthy.
So, please, stick to the common ABAB rhyming scheme for unoriginal sexual innuendos and at least leave us the beautiful tricolons and hendiatritis.

picture credit

Incinerated four-leaf clover

Sometimes bad luck lasts a couple of days, but this one has been dragging around for a while. As I was sitting on the couch earlier, contemplating why and how I deserve this bad time in my life (there is nothing wrong with a little self-pity), I suddenly noticed the “Surviving the French Revolution” book.

It was given to me by a friend, and I only opened it once….a while ago….to make a herbarium out of a four-leaf clover. Suddenly it hit me. Perhaps the 1:10,000 chance in finding a four-leaf clover does not bless you with good luck, but perhaps with bad luck too. Did I bring my own misfortune disguised in a leafy green clover?

I had to do something about it. Throwing it away would mean it is still there, just in a different location. Instead, I found a pair of matches in the kitchen cabinet and lit it on fire. It had to be incinerated, only that way it can stop jinxing my life. I hope from now on my bad luck is gone.

Are you guys superstitious? Do you think a clover or a lucky charm truly bring good luck? Am I a little crazy for doing this? Share your thoughts with me  

P.S: Thank you everyone who took the time to get my special offer on Amazon a few days ago. I am thrilled some people out there are reading what I wrote….IT MEANS THE WORLD! And please leave a review or comment, love it or hate it.

Picture Credit

orlando

The remarkable overly air-conditioned rides

 “It was a remarkable morning; the lake was quiet, the light blue color of the sky was reflecting on the surface of the water and green trees were peacefully resting nearby.”– Jenna Gunner

Jenna Gunner, in my sort of cliché description, lives for the moments by the lake and finds those moments to be remarkable; the sense of peacefulness, tranquility and connectedness with nature astound her.

I, on the other hand, am a little simpler with “remarkable”. When you lead a crazy-busy schedule, you start finding simple things remarkable. I love my long rides in an overly air-conditioned car (Florida heat is terrible, ya’ll). I love them because they bring me peace and serenity (on those instances I avoid rush hour).

The point is, we all have different ideas on what is remarkable. What is worthy of remark in your life? Comment, like and share!

P.S: Another remarkable thing in my life: my book “Six months of Croissants, Café crèmes, Parties and Love” for FREE on Amazon from August 8th to August 12th! Please check it out and leave a review on Amazon, whether you love it or hate it 🙂 Thank you!

Picture Credit

Weekend is the new vacation

“What about you? How have you been? How long are you staying?” “Same as last year, about two weeks,” I answered.-  Jenna Gunner

As Americans, we don’t often get the short end of the stick… but when I look at my vacations days, I can’t help but feel envious. Damn Europeans. As I hope for maybe two weeks (including weekends!), there is an Italian out there with 42 days of vacation, a Frenchman with 37 days and a German with 35 days…. and I get 13 days? When did we allow this to happen?

Do you know what happens in Europe in the summertime? Companies shut down. People are gone for a month and little work gets done in July and August. But guess what? Everybody comes back happy and rested.  Sadly, for Americans a weekend is a vacation these days, and quite frankly that is horrendously bothersome.

How many vacation days do you get? Do you think Europeans have too much time off?

 

P.S: Thanks for reading my blog! 😀 Check out my book on Amazon, and don’t forget to comment, share or like!

Picture Credit

Stats on Vacation Days

Nice fat rolls and a kick-ass swimsuit

“I grabbed my swim bag and I locked myself into the bathroom on the first floor to put on a black one-piece bathing suit. I wrapped the biggest towel around me to cover my body. I always wore a one-piece because I didn’t dare to show my belly to anyone, no way in hell.”- Jenna Gunner

It’s hard being Jenna. It’s hard being any other “curvy, fat, shapely, obese, not-skinny, overweight, large, plump…” woman… specially in the summer.

I went to the beach today, and I decided not to be like Jenna. You make the same choice. Wherever you go, don’t feel bad for how you look. Don’t feel bad because you are not a chiseled powerhouse. It’s ok to have fat! I will rock my bikini today….along with my flabby belly. Who’s with me?!!

P.S: Thanks for reading my blog, and don’t be afraid to comment, share or like! 🙂

Picture Credit