Monday, November 13, 2017

Hashtag-Me-Too ~ #MondayBlogs



RAINN and other well-known sources have been citing appalling statistics about sexual assault and abuse in America since 1994. However it wasn’t until 2016 and 2017 when a deluge of sexual assault/abuse/harassment allegations against famous personalities came to the forefront that most people started mouthing the words, “I can’t believe how many allegations...” Earlier this year Facebook saw a huge amount of their members posting #MeToo representing those of us who suffered in silence and in solidarity; most posters were women although several men joined in as well.

Do you feel as if you’ve been bombarded by the amount of women, men and (former) children who have stepped up with their stories of abuse? According to RAINN’s most recent facts “1 out of every 6 American women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape in her lifetime” and “About 3% of American men have experienced an attempted or completed rape in their lifetime.” There are even more disturbing facts when you consider that “From 2009-2013, Child Protective Services agencies substantiated, or found strong evidence to indicate that, 63,000 children a year were victims of sexual abuse.” For more statistics visit https://www.rainn.org/statistics/scope-problem .

Have these numbers bothered you yet? Think about the teen-age girls traveling the NYC subways during rush hour, when bodies are jam-packed against one another and suddenly there is a hand exploring their genital area (or worse) — I know this happened often to my travel companions and myself during our high school years. There are too many stories about women being propositioned in return for otherwise well-deserved work promotions and far too many stories where the advances were turned down and yet the word NO held no meaning. Of course most of us are highly offended hearing about children who were molested by that favorite “Uncle” (or “Aunt”) and then dismissed when they tried to tell Mommy and Daddy. I know there are horror stories about men being victimized by women as well and also same-sex assaults.

There is a sad sickness in our society when a woman is blamed for getting raped because she was walking home alone at night, or when a 14-year old child “allows” an adult to liberties. How twisted is the logic that believes a prisoner in jail, even for minor infractions, “deserves” to be raped? And why do we find different standards and excuses based on someone’s political position, financial status, being a movie star, or his/her skin color or sexual preference? How can any decent human being believe that a woman who doesn't want it and fights cannot be raped?! Why do some states treat marital rape, even though illegal in all 50 states, different when it comes to punishment? And why are there so many complaints about college administrations who hide the incidence of rape and sexual assault rather than pursuing full police investigations and arrests?

I am aware that there will be someone reading this who will offer up the possibility of false accusations and the permanent damage that can cause the unjustly blamed. Yes, false accusations can cause lifetime trauma leading to broken marriages, loss of employment and even worse. But I honestly believe that the actual incidence of rape and unwanted sexual encounters, even those that are not prosecuted, are far more common than false allegations; in this instance we hope that the law and juries can see through to the truth. But I will admit feelings of anger when the reaction to an accusation is automatically greeted with the assumption that the victim is crying “wolf”.

Knowing how many of us were compelled to post “#MeToo” is sad. And learning how many rape and assault survivors have felt they had to keep silent because their character would be questioned or condemned is tragic.

…just my thoughts,
Chelle Cordero,
author of The Survivor Series: Bartlett’s RuleCourage of the Heart






                                                                                                   


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Monday, October 2, 2017

The First Page Review blog hop ~ Annie's Karma

Visit this page for a lot more great samples!

 from Annie's Karma


Prologue

“Okay. This is the last of the boxes. Now we can get out of this hell-hole.”
“Uh-huh.” Annie kept her back to him so he couldn’t see the tears on her cheeks.
“Hey, are you okay?” Dave put the box down and went to her. He put his arms around her middle and gently pulled her back against him. “Do you want to talk about it?”
“No.” She turned in his arms and wrapped her arms around his waist. “It’s stupid. I haven’t been living here for months… and I certainly wasn’t happy in this place.” She buried her face against his chest.
Dave could only remember that Annie almost died here. He glanced over her head and noted the bare walls and the hollow vacancy in front of him. Still, this had been her home and he had to remind himself of that. At some point he hoped she felt happy about moving in to this house, he wondered if she would ever remember that joy.
“I bet you had dreams, though, when Scott and you first moved in here.”
She shrugged in his embrace. “I used to be na├»ve.”
Dave felt only anger towards Scott and sadness for Annie. He hoped, sooner rather than later, that he could return some of that innocence to her. Sometimes Dave wondered if he could have lived with himself, if Annie would ever have forgiven him, if he had made sure that Scott hadn’t lived to go to trial, but that wasn’t the kind of law enforcement officer and not the kind of man he was. He only hoped that Annie could love him for that. He held her just a little bit tighter.
“I hope the next person who lives here makes it into a real home.” Annie sniffled and backed out of his arms. “I’m sorry, I don’t mean to be whiny.”
“You’re not being whiny.” He reached out and caught her chin with his fingertips. He tilted her face up to look at him and shrugged. “That’s beautiful of you to wish someone else happiness, especially someone you don’t know,” He narrowed his eyes, “Or do you?”

Friday, September 8, 2017

A Teaser from Touch of Love

An Empty House

No matter how many times I turned the key in the lock I was always disappointed to find the room within always empty. I kept hoping for the day he would return. I promised him I would wait as long as it took until he came back to me.
For months I missed my husband, I missed sleeping next to him every night, and I missed seeing him every morning as he dressed for work. I was forced to accept the fact that it wasn’t our bed he fell asleep in every night. Someone else was preparing his meals, greeting him when he woke, and someone else was listening to him when he needed to talk. So many days and weeks passed while I cried myself to sleep every night… simply alone.
Life had changed. I never suspected that he would leave me, that he would leave our home.
...


A Chelle Cordero short
story collection

.
An Empty House: You never know what tomorrow will bring. This is a personal essay about coping with and moving on with the “New Normal”.
The night before our 41st wedding anniversary my wonderful and loving husband was rushed to the hospital with a stroke. It was just after midnight on our anniversary that the Dr said the next 48 hours would be critical. He spent months in rehab and I feel very blessed that he was able to come home. This man has always been my hero (and the man I have based every one of my book heroes on!). It’s been a journey and we are on this road together...


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Sunday, August 6, 2017

Touch of Love... is Here!

 
~~ All Ebook Editions ~~

Touch of Love

Short Story Collection
 by Chelle Cordero

An Empty House: You never know what tomorrow will bring. This is a personal essay about coping with and moving on with the “New Normal”.  The Lost Love: Rejected for her Mexican heritage by the teen-age boy she had a crush on, Lindsay put it behind her. So how come, when they wind up at the same college years later, Lindsay can’t get over her anger at the humiliation? And will Brad ever forgive himself for his callous behavior? The Dead Guy in the Park: An almost end-of-shift call leads a paramedic and her partner to a dead guy in the park. All she has to do is pronounce him so that the coroner can come get the body. What could possibly go wrong? *includes a bonus Spanish edition El Difunto del Parque translated by Marianna Carranza Rekindled: Cynthia and Daniel were college sweethearts torn apart by tragedy. A lifetime later they bump into each other again — Is this their second chance at love?  A Date with Mistletoe: Sometimes you find that it’s the “Unanswered Prayers” that are the best things to ever happen. When confronted by the man of yesterday alongside the man who means the world to her, there is no doubt in Rachel’s mind that she has the best.  He is My Brother…: Who can help save the life of a beloved family member? Prayers, hopes and a personal plea for help. Always, One More Time: Disowned by her parents because of an interracial love affair, Callie Sanders is left alone to raise her son after his father, Jimmy Bernerd, dies fighting in a war on the other side of the world. Desperate to give her son a family she goes to the Bernerd household — what she finds is a second chance at love, acceptance, and family.   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-zlwVoBgwCk
 

Touch of Love

Short Story Collection
 by Chelle Cordero
 
Grab your copy today!

Also Available through
!Indigo, Bucher.de, Angus & Robertson, WHSmith, Thalia, Tolino, Streetlib, 3M, Baker and Taylor, Follet, Overdrive, Gardners, Chegg, Google Play, and more!  

Author Chelle Cordero
Chelle Cordero writes stories of Passion and Suspense. Vanilla Heart Publishing has published eleven Cordero novels: Bartlett’s Rule; His Lucky Charm; Within the Law; Courage of the Heart; Final Sin; Hostage Heart; A Chaunce of Riches; Common Bond, Tangled Hearts; Hyphema; and Karma Visited. She is currently working on her next novel and promises another action packed adventure and heartwarming love story. Chelle has been writing both fiction and non-fiction for the bulk of her adult life and has been with Vanilla Heart Publishing since early 2008. Her books have earned many plaudits which includes: Bartlett’s Rule was named one of Carolyn Howard-Johnson’s Top Ten Reads for 2009; Final Sin was an Honorable Mention in the Fiction Category of the 2010 NY Book Festival and a 2009 Pushcart Prize nominee.; Hyphema won the Dec 9, 2011 Friday Book Cover Vote on the Shades of Love website; A Chaunce of Riches was Winner of D. Renee Bagby’s readers’ choice for The Best Overall First Chapter, April 2010; and Hostage Heart, Final Sin and A Chaunce of Riches had top ten finishes in the 2009 Preditors’ and Readers’ poll. Chelle was also featured in “50 Great Writers You Should Be Reading” published by The Author’s Show in 2010. Chelle Cordero maintains an author’s blog at http://chellecordero.blogspot.com/, and a promotional blog at http://ccepotourri.wordpress.com/. Her website http://ChelleCordero.com offers information on all of her books and her appearances. Bloggers and the media are welcome to visit Chelle’s media room at http://chellecordero.com/media/ with downloadable photos and other information. Be sure to LIKE Chelle’s FaceBook page at https://www.facebook.com/AuthorChelleCordero and follow her on Twitter at https://twitter.com/ChelleCordero. You can email Chelle at ChelleCordero(at)gmail.com. Chelle lives in the northeast with her husband, Mark, and family. They have two adult offspring. Jenni and Marc (& Trish); they also live with three mischievous and spoiled pussycats, one of whom has taken up permanent residence on Chelle’s desk. Chelle is a full-time freelance journalist for multiple publications; her articles appear regularly throughout North America and she writes a monthly column on NYS Emergency Medical Services issues as a (former) NYS Emergency Medical Technician (First Responder News).
   

Vanilla Heart Publishing

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Monday, July 10, 2017

#DailyPrompt ~ SAVAGE ~ #MondayBlogs


I found a terrific writing site (thanks to my friend Sugana) — The Daily Post: Daily Prompts provides a NEW daily prompt every day to give every writer a way to put a spark in her/his creativity. I decided to join this group every so often...

Today's Prompt is SAVAGE

Definition of SAVAGE[Adjective] (of an animal or force of nature) fierce, violent, and uncontrolled.[noun] (chiefly in historical or literary contexts) a member of a people regarded as primitive and uncivilized.[verb] (especially of a dog or wild animal) attack ferociously and maul.



How many are aware that this word, “SAVAGE”, appears in one of the most defining and important documents of the free world? Well buckle up and come along for a little history lesson:

Here in the U.S.A. we just celebrated July 4th, our country’s “birthday”. For many Americans this means parties, barbecues and fireworks. For some Americans there is both a bittersweet commemoration of a momentous event that took place on July 4th, 1776, and bitterness that’s been swallowed and yet keeps bubbling to the surface.

Every year, somewhere, it is traditional to find the American Declaration of Independence being read in its entirety. On July 4th, 1776, in Congress, the signed Declaration of the thirteen United States of America was adopted and officially gave birth to a nation. The 56 (male) signers were from the 13 states that made up our young country: Delaware, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, New York Georgia, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, New Jersey, Connecticut and Maryland.

While the Declaration was officially adopted on July 4th it took until November of that year for all of the representatives to sign it. The very first signature in the Declaration, signed on July 4th, belonged to John Hancock who was the President of the Continental Congress. The 56th and final signature belonged to Matthew Thornton from New Hampshire. The oldest man to sign was 70-year old Benjamin Franklin. John Hancock’s signature is the most prominent one on the page.

One of the most famous lines in this very famous document says, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” 

The document then continues with a long litany of examples about how the King of Great Britain violated the rights and rules of the people in the 13 colonies. 

One example included later in the document is “He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

The indigenous people living in this land BEFORE Christopher Columbus mistakenly labeled them “Indians” thinking that he had arrived in India were referred to as Indians and Savages. Also, wasn’t it kind of nervy to refer to these people as “the inhabitants of our frontiers”? They were here FIRST!

Ironically while many the people living in the 13 colonies came to this land to escape tyranny and oppression, the freedoms that the Declaration of Independence spoke of were not automatically bestowed on all the people living in our land — groups such as Women, Blacks, and Native Americans were denied the right of voting for many years.

Married women were also not allowed to own property or keep any money they earned. The 19th Amendment in 1919 granted women the right to vote, but it took more than half a decade, until 1984, for all of the states to ratify the agreement. In 1870 the 15th Amendment granted Black men the right to vote, although there are many recorded cases where exercising that right was consistently challenged. 

Even though the 15th Amendment granted voting rights to ALL male citizens of the United States, the Native Americans were denied citizenship (and therefore could not vote) until the Indian Citizenship Act in 1924. There were many instances of harassment and discrimination until the Voting Rights Act of 1965 was signed into law.

Our country’s history is not without blemish, but at least today every citizen, regardless of age*(18+), gender or race, has the right to vote and hopefully will always be able to.

“And I'm proud to be an American where at least I know I'm free.
And I won't forget the men who died, who gave that right to me.
And I'd gladly stand up... next to you and defend her still today.
'Cause there ain't no doubt I love this land God bless the U.S.A.”
("Proud To Be An American" Lee Greenwood)




Monday, July 3, 2017

#DailyPrompt ~ SCAMPER ~ #MondayBlogs

I found a terrific writing site (thanks to my friend Sugana) — The Daily Post: Daily Prompts provides a NEW daily prompt every day to give every writer a way to put a spark in her/his creativity. I decided to join this group every so often...

Today's Prompt is SCAMPER



 The definition of SCAMPER: [verb] 
to run nimbly and usually playfully about  ~ also ~
An acronym for a Creative Thinking Process



When I tackle these word prompts I always start out by looking up the true definition of the word just to be sure that I am using it correctly. Today my first thought when I read the definition was of my year-and-a-half old grand-nephew “D” that I got to see today. With a house full of people “D” was of course confident that he was the center of attention — I think he was!
With an energy that all of the older folks envied, “D” ran back and forth through his parents’ house, scampering, hiding around corners and giggling which always gave away his hiding spot. It was a truly fun day with the inevitable question, “How can we bottle up some of that energy?”

I was also very intrigued when I Googled the word to find that S.C.A.M.P.E.R. is a mnemonic representing an innovative 7-step technique to brainstorm, “think out of the box”, solve problems, and kindle creativity. Imagine — Improve — Invent. [from Wikipedia]
1.      Substitute comes up with another topic that is equivalent to the present topic.
2.      Combine adds information to the original topic.
3.      Adjust identifies ways to construct the topic in a more flexible and adjusted material.
4.      Modify creatively changes the topic.
5.      Put to other uses identifies the possible scenarios and situations where this topic can be used.
6.      Eliminate removes ideas or elements from the topic that are not valuable.
7.      Reverse, rearrange evolves a new concept from the original concept.
Step one allows us to think in terms of what we know, something that already is. This can be a hard good, a service, a process, or anything.
Step two makes us think of what “parts” can go in to improving and creating. Can we put other items together to serve a different purpose?
Step three helps us to examine what we could do to use the item in some other way (similar to the butter knife being used as a screwdriver, lol)
Step four begs the questions, how can we make this better (either an existing or a new product)?
Step five examines again the use of this product in a different manner and how that might alter the original product, would its use as something else be better if it were modified?
Step six helps us to narrow our focus and be more concise about the purpose or use of the item or service. What is necessary (parts, material, design) for the intended purpose and how can we streamline it?
Step seven is basically rethinking the project and how it could change if you went through the steps in a different order.
The S.C.A.M.P.E.R. technique forces us to think in abstract, creative ways. Simply put it’s like (figuratively) reaching into our brains and pulling out those tiny, otherwise hidden, ideas and thoughts. It certainly gives us something to wrap our minds around.


Ideas for using SCAMPER    [from GiftedMMiller]
1. Read a simple story. What elements of SCAMPER could be used to rewrite the story? If you get stuck on a writing assignment, will the ideas from SCAMPER help you to keep going?
2. Create your own invention. Take any common object and think about how it might be changed or improved upon. Think about the history of a common invention, such as the telephone. Go back to the earliest phone you can find and see how the elements of SCAMPER were used to improve each generation of the communication device.
3. Take a current social or political problem and discuss how elements of SCAMPER might be applied to come up with possible solutions.
4. Use SCAMPER to analyze a Web site or a brochure. Can you find ways that the Web site or brochure might be improved?
5. Take any common object—a penny, a shoe, a table. How can you apply the elements of SCAMPER to come up with a new and creative use of the object? 

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Monday, June 26, 2017

#DailyPrompt ~ Cringe ~#MondayBlogs


I found a terrific writing site (thanks to my friend Sugana) — The Daily Post: Daily Prompts provides a NEW daily prompt every day to give every writer a way to put a spark in her/his creativity. I decided to join this group every so often...

Today's Prompt is CRINGE



 The definition of CRINGE: [verb] cringe/krinj, to bend one's head and body in fear or in a servile manner; such as "he cringed away from the blow"   synonyms: cower, shrink, recoil, shy away, flinch, blench, draw back



As a child I cringed when the doctor pulled out a needle and gave me a shot in the arm. I also cringed when a teacher pulled a surprise quiz on the class. Childhood fears (for most of us) certainly seem like minor inconveniences after we grow into adulthood. Not that getting punished by your parents, or being lost in a huge department store, or facing off a childhood bully weren’t scare-worthy events…

The day my husband and I closed on our house I remember walking into the entryway using MY key and completely cringing as I stared at the stairs leading up thinking “oh my G-d, what did we do? How are we ever going to pay this off? It’s just too much responsibility!” That same house would become a haven to us, raised a family, always had pussycats pretending to be the 4 A.M. express running through the house, and was filled with constant laughter and lots of love. And yes, we were able to pay it off.

When each of our children learned to drive I cringed each time they went out and breathed an enormous sigh of relief when they arrived back home in one piece. There were many other moments through my life that I cringed in anticipation of hearing the phone ring late at night, or opened a hospital bill that I swore just couldn’t be right, or went to bed worried about something or other and woke from a frightening nightmare. Plenty of opportunities to cringe, shake with nervousness, and lose sleep and in the end plenty of time to simply sigh with relief and laugh at myself for all of the worrying.

The thing I have learned through the years is not to allow yourself to be paralyzed with fear wondering and worrying about things that MIGHT happen. While there are indeed upsetting and sometimes even earth-shattering things that can happen in all of our lives, wasting time worrying is just that, a waste of time. Nobody knows what will happen tomorrow, but if you don’t take advantage of living fully today because you are too busy cringing then that is 24-hours you will never ever get back.

Allowing fear to make you lose precious time with your loved ones, enjoy a good book, let the sun warm your skin, or simply appreciate the scenery is definitely a loss that is cringe-worthy.