It's been over a month since my last post which was my birthday giveaway. Once again I want to thank all of the people who entered and everyone who was highlighted in the giveaways. Once again they are - Derek Keeling, Steffy Rogers, Phoebe Fox, Carlos R. Savournin, Sherri Crowder, AngelWingsEmbroidery, Allthingsessential, Weina Dai Randel, Victoria Wyngate, Susan Haught, Ryan Kelly, and Normandie Fischer. Give them some likes, shares, reviews, and of course sales! And also a huge shout out to my international partner-in-crime for all her help. Shenanigans go global with Rosie!
Speaking of Susan Haught - I recently had the pleasure of diving into her A Promise of Fireflies. I think I was up until about 5am reading it and I didn't want to put it down. I had to keep going forward to see what was going to happen next. The book became slightly personal when it was revealed one of the characters had served in Vietnam with the 101st Airborne - the Screamin' Eagles. My late father was in Vietnam with the Screamin' Eagles. I don't know much about his time there as he never spoke of it. He might have revealed more as we got older but I was eighteen when he passed. The opportunity simply never came. However, the book did spur me into doing a little Googling and I found this. That's my dad on the far right.
Speaking of my late father - he died of cancer on December 26, 1997. The doctors had told us to call the family on Christmas Eve but he rallied to make it through Christmas. I'm bringing this up for an important reason. While my father was a rather heavy smoker his lungs were actually clear when he was diagnosed. Not that his smoking wasn't part of it - it does damage your immune system after all. But, his cancer started out as skin cancer. It's hard to tell in this black and white picture but my father was what is known as "Black Irish". Meaning his complexion had more of an olive base than the "traditional" rosy one (like my siblings and myself). We're warned that those who are "pale" (or porcelain as I prefer) are at a heightened risk for skin cancer. While that is true it doesn't mean those with a darker complexion aren't at risk. I know I've blogged about this before and I'll blog about it again. My father had the lymph nodes removed from under one arm on October 18, 1996. I remember the date because it was my sister's 12th birthday. By Easter 1997 he was back in the hospital and he was gone in December.
People often don't take skin cancer seriously since it seems "trivial" when compared to other cancers. And, it can be easily taken care of. But, as my father's story shows it can be as deadly as any other cancers.
I had my annual visit to the dermatologist last week and I am pleased to share that no problem spots were found. That makes it six years since my last "abnormal" mole. And that's something I hope to never go through again. Make sure you get checked as well and use protection if you're going to be outside.
I don't have much else as far as news goes. Things have been quiet. I have some queries out but I'm not pounding the pavement the way I had been in the past. I'm waiting to get some notes back from readers. After that it's back to the Fortress of Solitude to do some editing. Then, I'll be diving back into the shark-infested waters.
The next episode of PubTalkTV is on May 2 and I definitely recommend anyone battling through the query trenches to check it out. There's always good information to be had.