Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Extreme Love Book Trailer!!!

OMG, guys!!! I have to share this! Janna Mashburn made this stunning book trailer for Extreme Love that left me with chills and tears in my eyes. I'm a HUGE fan of the UFC/MMA and she completely captured Dante and the sport I love! The song she used is PERFECT! The entire thing is just perfect, down to the quote she used from the book and showing Caitlyn's struggle. I'm in awe of it, and just so overwhelmed that she chose Extreme Love to do this for. Thank you so much, Janna! You seriously have no idea how this made me feel by making this and its something I will never forget!

Wasn't it freaking awesome!!!!!! Here's the link for where it's located on youtube. Go give this girl a thumbs up!!!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

How Caitlyn Has Helped Me…Twice

It’s been thrown out there that Caitlyn, my heroine from Extreme Love, is based around my own weight loss issues. What I’d like to share with you now is MY story and how Caitlyn helped me. Twice. I’ll get to the second time later. 

This was me in 2004. 

I weighed 245 pounds and wore a size 22/24 depending on the cut of the pants and a 2XL shirt. Btw—that’s my daughter I’m holding. Wasn’t she the cutest baby ever!

Up to this point, I spent my entire life overweight. This was a rare picture I allowed to be taken of me. Even though I was unhappy with my weight, had tried every diet known to man, had joined gyms more times than I could count, I never succeeded. After my twins were born, I started to realize how badly the extra weight was pulling me down. So on New Year’s Day 2005, I made the archaic resolution to lose weight and get into shape. I went down to my local YMCA and joined. And my weight-loss journey began. 

This was me in 2008. 

I weighed 167 pounds and wore a size 12. It took me over two years to lose 80 pounds. I did not lose weight easily, I struggled for every. Single. Pound. 

I was in a really bad place in 2008. I’d finally lost a ton of weight, 80 pounds was nothing to snerk at, so why didn’t I feel better about myself? Why was I still scowling at my reflection in the mirror? Still picking apart every single flaw? Still had years of inadequate thoughts pounding me from the inside, making me see a person who was no longer there? 

On top of that, I felt lost, caught between two worlds and I didn’t feel like I belonged in either one of them. I’d always known who I was, but for the first time, I didn’t think I knew myself at all. The confusion, the constant back and forth with myself, started eating me alive. I needed to get it out.

So I started writing Extreme Love. I combined how I felt as I lost the weight with how I felt after I had it off.

Caitlyn became my catalyst. Every conflicting thought, every insecurity, every desire I had to change my thought process, I put into her. As I got all those emotions out, as I sobbed while writing scenes, telling Caitlyn the things I knew I needed to accept as well, as I wrote her growth…I grew. I started putting the inner demons that made me still see the size 22 woman in the mirror to rest. By the time I was done writing Extreme Love, I felt emotionally cleansed. And my life as a size 12 woman finally started and I embraced her.

That was the first time Caitlyn helped me.

The second time has been recent. Like in the last three months recent. 

I never did lose another pound, but I kept the 80 pounds off for five years. During this time, I had two back surgeries, separated from my husband, moved three times, became a single mom, and started working outside the house on a more full-time basis. My weight would creep up with each incident, but I was always able to get it back down.

Then last February, I signed a three book contract with Entangled. Four months after that, I signed another three book contract. I had deadlines coming out the wazoo. I had another job. I was a single mom. I had four books to write with limited time. (Soooo not complaining, writing is my dream). But during this time, I lost my way. I started thinking things like, once I finish this book I’ll get back on the wagon. Well, I finished that book, and then edits would come in. And I’d think, when I finish these edits, I’ll have more time.

You see the pattern.

Over this last year, I have gained back 40 pounds of the 80 I lost. I’d sworn to myself I would never let that happen, but I had. And all the bad started coming back, everything I’d worked so hard to put to rest resurfaced and hit me like a freight train. I didn’t want my picture taken. I didn’t want to look in the mirror. The scowling when I did look. I started hiding again. Making excuses for why I couldn’t go out.

Then my edits for Extreme Love came in three months ago.

And I started reading, editing…remembering

Each scene I worked on reminded me of everything I had fought so hard to change. I’d been in such a dark place, had struggled to free myself from its paralyzing grip. And I had broken free, it’d taken time and writing a book to do it, but I had, and I sure as hell didn’t want to go back.

Yes, I have deadlines. Yes, I’m a single mom. Yes, I have another job. Yes, my time is extremely limited. But I have to make time for me…and I did. I got back into the things I’d put off that made me feel good about myself, that made me smile. In the process, I’ve lost 20 of those 40 pounds. The funny thing is, I’m sitting at a size 14/16 right now, but I’m looking at my reflection the way I finally did after I wrote Extreme Love—with pride.

I’ve learned during my lifetime struggle that it’s not your size or weight that matters, it’s how you feel about yourself and getting rid of the negativity we bludgeon ourselves with. The key is finding what helps change the way you think. The obstacle is taking the time to find that key.

Caitlyn helped me find mine. Twice.

So thank you, Caitlyn, for helping me through my journey and always being a reminder of where I’ve come from. 


I want to celebrate my upcoming release of Extreme Love by giving away a $20 Gift-card to the bookstore of your choice. To enter, please leave a comment with your email address and I will choose a winner on April 30th. 

New body. New clothes. New men.

Used to the average Joe, Caitlyn Moore is overwhelmed when the supremely masculine Dante Jones walks into her life and expresses an interest in her. At first she pushes him away, refusing to encourage the attention of a cage fighter. Then she learns Dante has a love ‘em and leave ‘em reputation. What better way to fine-tune her non-existent flirting skills than with a male who won’t stick around? But Dante has no intention of being a practice dummy; he’s out for all or nothing. Now Caitlyn must accept Dante—violent career and all—or let him go.

Dante “Inferno” Jones has one goal: win the Welterweight Championship. At a time when focus is crucial, the last thing he needs is a distraction. Yet Caitlyn Moore becomes a challenge he can’t resist. When the light-hearted pursuit shifts to a battle to win her heart, his focus is shot. Faced with losing the biggest match of his career, Dante must decide if his extreme life also has room for Extreme Love.

Thank you for stopping by and letting me share my story.