That Didn’t Go As Planned

March did not go as planned. Does it really ever, though?


So, we started the month off with an issue from Frances. I don’t know why, but she picked her birthday at the beginning of the month to start threatening herself and others again. The hard part when she does this is that it is random. Also, she usually finds or makes a sharp object first. 

Then I had some issues with food. These prices can take a crap now, please. Really. I always said I would like to live in a history worth note, but I was thinking Mars. Certainly not on a path to Blackout. Thanks.

Then we had an issue suddenly at 4AM with our dog, Tika. She woke us up by running into the dressers in our room. She was foaming at the mouth so badly that we were soaked over our winter blankets. At about 5:15AM she went into a series of seizures. They were able to finally make them stop at about 7:15AM. She stayed in a waking coma until the next day at about 3:30PM when we let her go. We couldn’t see her failing and in so much pain. They said her brain was probably already gone, but we just kept thinking she was in pain. I will dedicate a dog in the rest of the New Camelot series after her. She was such a beautiful pup. 

Tika laying on Briton’s lap while he plays his Nintendo DS.

After that it was just planning the rest of the kids’ school year, making and keeping their appointments, and trying to survive now. I also care for one of my friend’s part-time as her errand person and entertainment. She stays in her house all day. 

I have a friend from the Ukraine that I have also been chatting with when I can. He got out, and most of his family too, but they fear they aren’t any safer in Poland anymore. 

I also have two birthday kids in May. I am not done with their gifts, yet. 

So, what do I need to do now? What are my plans? Should I plan… ugh. Probably. I am setting up new posts for my social media now. I will be spending this entire weekend writing everything that is planned for this month here on Patreon. I also plan to write an entirely Patreon only rant on what just happened with that other author who claims being a diverse parent to ASD (hint, she isn’t.) So, finish the writing I need for this month this weekend, and then finish those two birthdays presents before May. I can do this! 

I really have so much going on, and really need to just sit to write. I want to be an author full time again. I haven’t done this since before everything went to crap in 2020. Time to come out of my shell again. Hello world. I still am here! I am ready to be seen again.

Want to read blog posts, book reviews, and stories early? Come and join me on my Patreon.

Because it is a Lie!?

When an author, someone who is an influencer, declares a release date of a well wanted/waited for book… well, I was duped. I really thought that when someone declares a book release to be on April 5th, then that is when I would get the book. Especially since I ordered the book back before Christmas on a well-known site. A site I have my books on. 

France Gamble’s book covers

This whole story may sound like I am just whining over nothing, but I think it is about support. It is about following through with your promises. The first thing I saw was this post in our support page for this person’s influencer blog on Facebook. It is a support group for her page, but also a place for parents of special needs kids to help each other. I joined mainly to stay away from the drama I thought was associated with other Autistic parent groups. I also joined due to having more than just an ASD child. 

I read this all the way down. I thought: OH! I’ve done this before. I have done Author Take-Overs for pre-releases. I have promoted other people’s books. I have also read and reviewed books! I’m ready for this! I can help. It was to be exclusive, and the questionnaire to get in was very specific. We had to list our pages, our following numbers, and how we could help promote her book. Whatever works, I suppose. I thought she just was going to look for those with a ton of followers. My twitter, Instagram, and Facebook have a fair amount. I got in! YAY!

I did get an email with a release of the book. Recently. Haven’t been able to find the time due to my March Madness, but I was ready to crack her open this weekend. Cool. Going to still promote the crap out of this book. It is a book that sounded like my own journey with special needs kids. I started posting pictures and links for her book release! You know, the whole hype and stamina involved.

Then the countdown really began! We were given these pictures to help advertise some quotes. Here is one:

I am ready. I’ve got this!

But, then suddenly people started showing up on the supporter page with copies of this book in hand. What? Then she posted that she went to her local B&N and signed a few copies! So, hurry to her home town and grab them while you can. 

What?! I could feel the frustrations inside building. I had a pre-order still waiting to be shipped. I also paid $98 to see her April 30th for a VIP signing of this book. Exclusive tickets… I was counting down to the release. Where is my book? Why is it some random in her hometown could buy all of the books at a store when this isn’t released yet? How is it that I have spent so much time and energy with this book, but they are out? What am I counting down to? What was I paying for to see her in May for such a steep price? She couldn’t offer to sign copies for us? Her supposed exclusive release team? 

I wrote this post in her launch group. Not the main group. Not her blog page. This is in just the exclusive launch group. I was frustrated. I was angry, but I was also hurt. I ordered a book, too. I gave her boost numbers for the top website to put her in the top 100 book sales, but we could have just gone to the store? I could have grabbed my copy today from a shelf, but I had one on order for next week. I also worked hard for her, and I got nothing in return for it. 

My exclusive only post wasn’t up for a full minute before she ripped that down. I was immediately kicked from the promoter group. Fine. I was still in her supporter group. 

Then suddenly I am blocked from commenting, posting, and reacting. Figures. They didn’t tear it down, so they took my threat seriously. 

Then she messaged me. Of course she did. Here is that whole exchange:

I feel like she is trying to gaslight me. I have been writing, publishing, and advertising books for years now. I have been an avid reader for almost 4 decades. 

So, what happens from here? Well, I am getting together my ASD friends to make sure people know about her. What can you do? Let others know. I am sure her book is interesting, but now I feel she just is an abuser. She used me. She then didn’t feel the need to ask about any of our feelings about this issue. What did we all just work so hard for? I never did get an answer for why some of us preordered for a release date that was bogus, either.

I am not the only one hurt in this. Here is another comment on a person who posted a picture of themselves with a book already, too. 

I am calling her out now. She wrote a book about parenting ASD. I also parent ASD. I don’t hold my kid back, promote his off-days for my own benefit (like sharing a video of him screaming in frustration), and certainly would never take advantage of my fanbase like this. This woman needs to not be the face of ASD parenting. She may have a book out now, but let’s make this her last book. 

This is a public post. Feel free to share on all your social media pages. Love you all! My fans are the best! 

Copyright: France Gamble 2022

Pandemic Blues

I am sure you are all with me on this. This pandemic has been hard for everyone, and especially difficult for those of us who live off of small incomes.

This said, I am here to say I am back! I have Casey ready to be updated again. There are numerous short stories written up (imposter syndrome has me horrible on these). Currently my posting schedule is as follows:

-Mondays will be Casey until it is finished.

-Wednesdays will be short stories until I run out of ideas.

-Fridays are going to be my work on Warlord until it is finished.

I will also be opening up the first chapters of my current works in progress for those who have not been able to be paying for full access. I think this will help prove that I am worth reading. 

School has started again, but this year the kids are good on their own for longer times. I also now have a full office area to work in. This is going to be a great benefit to me. Especially since I usually write in a café on weekends and not at my own home. The office is set for nighttime work and full benefits can be reached by Patreon people now! I am excited about this option for everyone. 

I have also decided to open up my Ko-Fi donation site for special short stories just over there dealing with a new idea I came up with during quarantine. I really hope you will go over and read that serial short story for the small donation site.

Let me know below what you want to see from my end. I really want to interact more with my fans and give more voices out there to my readers. 

When Illness Strikes

Continuing on with my series of Prepping tips and essays, here is my newest one for you all. I am going to say what happened during the storm. I am also going to say what happened afterward.

Today we will all find out what happens when a family is stuck for a week with no medical attention. Yup! We got sick.

It happens to all of us, you know. We catch something or exhaustion hits hard to our already overworked bodies.

Our family caught the infamous influenza that is going around. When we were able to contract it is a mystery since this winter has been very isolating. It had to have happened during one of our many doctor, specialist, or therapy appointments I was able to get everyone to.

But first, the storm sucked. We kept our power, but our vehicle did end up getting stuck. In fact, my friend’s vehicle was also stuck when we ended up needing to be rescued during an attempt to get to the ER. Ricky, my nine year old, fell down the stairs at the end of the storm. As they were opening up highways, we were trying to get the van to move with the hope that he hadn’t broken anything on his tumble down. It took us two and half hours to get to the hospital after the fall. On the way back, though, my friend’s vehicle slipped into the high banks of snow in one of the many farm ditches along our dirt road. We had to wait for another rescue. Her car was pulled out with a tow truck the next day. Three days later we were able to also get a tow truck out to get my van out finally. By that point, though, we were battling our illness.

So, the flu sucks. Not the gastro-intestinal issues that are most commonly called the “flu”, either. I am talking about the high fever, trouble breathing, coughing, and the aches so bad you feel like a god is pulling you apart one joint at a time. That is the “real” flu. Influenza.

The worry with Influenza is the fever and breathing. I have one child who gets pneumonia and another that has asthma. The flu becomes dangerous for children like this. Then add in that I was the only adult for at least a mile around for these days we were stuck out here, you have an even more dangerous situation. I knew once I caught it, then it would be time to beg for help. I made sure to not catch it.

Here is how you make sure to keep your family safe during most medical issues. I am going to cover sickness that doesn’t need medical intervention right away. With these things we can keep the flu and other such illnesses from spreading. Always try to for help if you feel you can’t handle it, though. I am, as stated before, not against the ER being visited.

Our few things needed will be for a two week illness. Any longer and you’ll probably need help anyway.

Remember that with all illnesses the body needs to have nutrients and liquids. My children had a sore throat from the coughing. I made them warm water and had them take a spoonful of honey to sooth their throats. If this was an infection of the throat, then we would have had homemade lemonade with the honey. Just what I do, but get medications if you feel the need.

I don’t mind the body fighting the illness like it should. I prefer not to lower any temperatures with medicines. I use cool clothes, warm baths, and honey spoons.

In your medicine cabinet, I say gather together two bottles of cold/flu medicine for all ages in your house, then get a large bottle of honey (so many uses for this and make sure the ingredients is pure honey), pain relievers and fever reducers (if you get the fever too high, then push one of these onto the patient to see if it helps before medical attention), decongestant for everyone, anti-dhiarriah, heart burn medicine, allergy medicine, laxative, and alcohol wipes.

My medicine cabinet is actually a large two shelved – two doors cabinet in my kitchen. All of my medical supplies for everyday use is in there.

The person who is sick needs to be isolated from the rest of the family. As people get symptoms, they are put into the sick room. The person caring for the sick people should have hand sanitizer outside the door of the sick room. Use it going in and out. It would suck to get strep or a bad cold alongside the flu. Remember they do this in hospitals. It does work. I also have a robe that goes on outside of the door and I take it back off before sanitizing when I leave. If it is a known air born, then grab some masks from the medical section to also wear. It really is for the caring person to not get it, too.

Now that we have our medicines set up, let’s move on to other things. If you can’t leave the house for two weeks while caring for a sick person, then you will need food. I suggest easy to make food for the rest of the family. This is the time that we pull out our homemade microwave meals from our freezer or our all-in-one canned goods. Buy them if you need to. Rotate every six months to a year depending on their expiration date if bought. I make our meals every six months. We usually go through them within that time anyway due to someone getting sick.

We now have meals for the non-sick and the care person. You will need easy meals for the sick person/people as well. Canned soups are great for this. Go for the more broth type to replenish liquids, fill the stomach, and be easy on the body. Chicken noodle soup is also a great thing to have if you can make it or buy it. We always keep at least seven jars of chicken soup on hand from our storage room. I make it from scratch and can it myself. If the sick person is holding down liquid, then try at least one of the meals to have chunks of goodness in it. Do not force anyone throwing up to eat anything solid.

I also keep some extra snack like foods for the person who is caring for the sick people. There are times, I know, where I couldn’t stop from soaking rags in cold water to actually make a full meal and sit to eat. Trail mixes, chips, and such are fine for a meal or two during the few times you can’t walk away. Once all four of my kids had it, I knew I wasn’t going to be eating full meals anymore. I drank milk for the protein and added it to my snack grabs.

Getting ready for having the flu or a serious cold is easier than it sounds. Just try to remember what it was like to be sick the last time you were. For gastro-intestinal diseases and viruses, then be prepared for those as well. I am glad we didn’t have that this time, but we have fought those as well. With those it is usually the holding down liquid that is the toughest. Keep mint on hand to settle a stomach to hold down water. My kids know as soon as they say they are going to throw up that the mint leaves are out for tea.

If you are looking for alternative medicinal help, here is a small part of what I have in my cabinent besides the Nyquil and such:

-Eucalyptus oil to add to a humidifier or on the bottom of socks. (DO NOT PUT IN MOUTH!)
-Lemon oil to add to a spoonful of honey for a sore throat.
-Peppermint oil for fever reducing water on rags and also to kill athletes foot/foot smells.
-Melaleuca oil for acne and rashes.
-Frankincense oil for bug bites and to use with honey for scratches.
-Honey is used as an antibiotic on wounds and sore throats during illness. Local honey a day can ease allergies.
-Homemade ear oil for ear aches and ear infections.
-Three corn bags and four rice bags

We are all better now. Cleaned up and washed down everything. Make sure, always, after having such an illness to disinfect the house again. Keep everyone from places if possible and use hand sanitizer like it is lotion until all coughs and sneezing is done.

Adversity Prepping Tip: Medicine and supplies can be expensive. It is alright to check the clearance section for things about to “expire”. The date on the medicine can be used up to a year after it “expires” and still have it do the job it is required. If something goes on sale again, then grab it if you are able to.

Death By Stickman

A new story is now free to view on my Patreon this week. It is small and silly. Nothing like I usually write, but I thought I’d have some fun with it. Feel free to head over. Read the free things and leave some comments.

Become a Patreon on my page and get updates on book chapters and some short stories only for members.

$10 tier gets signed copies of all of my books published at this time to their mailbox. If they are still $10 members at the time of another published release, then it is automatic they get another signed copy sent to them of that book as well!

I am still trying to figure out Discord, but I hope to have that up and running one day as well. Hope everyone enjoys my attempt at quick humor!

Come back next Tuesday for another link to another short story!

Happy Birthday To Me!

Today is my birthday, so that means more goals for a new year. Let me catch everyone up on my year:

Last year I got very sick. Finally my disability put me into a blind situation in a bed for weeks. I could only lay with my thoughts. I couldn’t speak, look at anything, and my hearing was even worse than usual. As I was stuck in that bed, I came up with new stories. I couldn’t type them out. I couldn’t even dictate them to anyone. My voice didn’t work. I could only use a few signs from Sign Language with my family to get across anything I needed.

It’s over with, though. For the most part, at least. I am glad for it. I have found my limit and to the point where I can be upright for almost a full day again. It does keep me from being able to get to town when I need to. I feel bad, because I have a pile of books to send out for my Patreon. If you are one of those waiting for my books, then be ready.

I also got into a book signing in a local town. It was a blast. I was able to be interviewed by a local newspaper, as well. I am so lucky to have been able to do that. I also have another few signing appointments set up for this new year. I love meeting you guys in public.
Then last summer I went on vacation for two weeks. We had a great time. For one whole week we went around Michigan and enjoyed the tourist locations. Then we went back to upper Minnesota and camped in the wilderness as survival training. So many new ideas came to me while laying in that tent. We even survived a tornado while hugging each other and hoping the trees didn’t fall onto our camping location.

The last major thing I have to announce is the release of Blank Slate as an original book! I revamped it and set it up for sale. Buy it now and keep it forever on your shelves.

With a new push to keep on schedule, please know I am ready to finally get things released for everyone. My goals are going to be shown instead of declared this time.

Enjoy my stories and free chapters on here? Please feel free to check out my books available and my Patreon for some paid for stories and chapters. Don’t feel like subscribing to anything? That’s fine! I also have a ko-fi set up for one payment only to send me a gift!

Blank Slate
Learn more:

Thank You!

I want to thank everyone who donated to my Patreon last month and also those who bought my books. I have received the money needed to get me a new laptop. You all are awesome. If you want to continue to support me in my writing, then feel free to subscribe to my Patreon and get the perks of new stories and first access to hard copies of books before they are published. Also, a $10 subscription gets all three of my current published works, autographed, in the mail to your house. Isn’t that nice?

But, thank you everyone for being awesome in helping me out with this. I appreciate all of my fans and readers. You are the best people in the world.

Next free spooky short story will be out on Monday on my Patreon site. Even if you do not want to subscribe, you may still follow for new stories and updates. Thank you!

School Once Again?!

Wow! I can’t believe the summer is already over! School has started once again, and so my break is over with. Everyone ready for more stories, chapters, and fun?

This month I am doing a second release of Keeper’s Kinn with a new format, cover, and some touch ups on the inside. So, make sure you are set up on my 10$ a month patreon pledge to receive the new edition of this book. Pledge by November 1st to get both editions in the mail, because after November 1st it will only be the new edition.

In other news, I am also gathering together past and present short stories for a small novel release in honor of my sister’s passing. This is my tribute to her life. She was the one who would encourage me to write, tell her stories, and read constantly to her. I miss her deeply, but I know she would want me to continue giving out my best to everyone. Once again, a pledge of $10 will get you a copy of this book for your shelves.

In my house we have a new school year started, and so I have become extra busy. This also means my second job has begun as well. All pledges and buying of my books gets me closer to making writing a full time occupation. My kids appreciate everyone, since this will also mean I am less tired and able to be with them more. I just am glad everyone is enjoying my stories again.

So, the last of the updates is that I am going to be also writing on book two of New Camelot. Warlord is now on my computer in outline form and ready for me to be entirely engrossed in it. I will be doing Warlord for NaNoWriMo this year. If you are a $1 pledge to my patreon, then you will be receiving the daily updates with that this coming November. Each time I finish the nightly writing on that book, I will be posting it on here. Are you ready to find out what happens next to Jenn and the families? I know I am ready to tell the story. Projected release in book form for that book is September 2018. Stay tuned!

I plan on posting the next chapter to Foreseen sometime during this week. Hope everyone is enjoying that book. I have been planning this one for three years now. Glad to finally work on it and get it out there. No projected date for publishing it, yet, but I will keep everyone posted so people can add it to their book shelves in the future.

I think this finishes my diary for this update. Hope everyone enjoyed the short story I posted today.  Remember to follow my facebook account, and I will try to remember I have a Twitter. Enjoy your day!

Head on over to my patreon to do pledges to my writing. Thank you!

Short Books

Sometimes, we all just need to read a quick story. Something to get our brains tired or occupied. The same happens when I write. Some days I don’t have the full novel in me. I work hard at writing, but sometimes it isn’t a full length novel. Most of the time it is a quick story. Something around 20 thousand words.

These aren’t even journal entries. These are longer than those, as well. I am writing these alongside my novels.

So, what am I saying?

I have some short stories to put out there. They will be quick reads on kindle or nook. A train station ride into work or two (depending on how fast you read.) A small story to read on breaks at work. Little things to read at night to wind down from the day.

What genre are they? The same with my novels. I don’t stick to one genre. They will be mystery, comedy, drama, and maybe a bit of fantasy. I was thinking of even doing a quick sequel to one of my full length novels. We will see.

I am writing these when I hit a block on my full stories. These are random. Something that I don’t think could ever fill the criteria of a novel, but still needed to be out there.

Yes, I am writing. Want me to write more? I would appreciate feedback on my current novels and stories. Leave a comment on here or review them on Amazon or Goodreads. I really do read them all (and your emails to me).

Thanks to everyone who is still reading and enjoying my books, Facebook page, and blog. I appreciate every single one of you.

Links to buy my books are in the menu tab on this blog. Thank you.