Remember This One Thing When You’re Single

Pensive lonely young woman sitting on beach hugging her knees and looking into the distance with hope

“There are plenty of fish in the sea,” someone will probably tell you immediately after a breakup. But why? Is it because they don’t know how else to comfort you or express that they’re there for you, and this is one of those trusted and reliable cliches that never fails for some reason? Or is it because they know you have an insatiable love for deep-sea fishing? I’ll give you a hint: it’s probably not the latter.

Why do we (as a society) place such an importance on being constantly romantically involved with somebody? And not only that, why do we let it determine the worth of ourselves and others as well? When you’re seeing somebody, you might get a pat on the back or some sort of variation on the statement “Congrats, good for you!” When you’re not, people may question what’s wrong with you, and ultimately hit you with some sort of statement of pity and reassurance (“don’t worry, there are plenty of fish in the sea…and not all of them will give you mercury poisoning like your last fish-boyfriend”). What if I told you that you don’t need to be reassured about your relationship status, because there is nothing wrong with being single? You might think, “Well, duh!”, but if that’s how we all really feel, why is the hallmark of being a twenty-something unfailing desperation for a romantic relationship? It’s because we are made to feel, sometimes subliminally, that there is sense of urgency to our relationship status and our romantic lives, when in reality, there is not.

I’ve had distant family, basic acquaintances, and even my dental hygienist ask about my love life (the only question that they have the right to ask is if I floss enough…and I think they already know the answer to that). And what’s more is that they will probably never stop asking, since most people believe they mean well when they do. So the only thing you can do is keep this one thing in mind when they do, the single most important thing to remember when you’re single: it’s perfectly normal. The only urgency in life is to loving yourself and living the life you have imagined, and whether that involves another person or not is your prerogative! So let’s all make an effort to stop telling people how many eligible fish there are in the sea…sometimes, you just want to swim alone.

By Brianna Porter at Never Liked It Anyway

4 Ways to Get Asked on a Date

Cheerful African American couple enjoying tea in the cafe

If you are looking to be in a relationship, it is important that you stop paying attention to this myth that it is difficult to find the right person. Your mindset impacts your life largely and if you never stop thinking that dating is not for your generation, you might never find your Mr. or Mrs. Right. If you want a satisfying relationship, you can find one by making a few changes in your life. Here are four things that we’ve found to be really effective in getting asked out by multiple people:

1. Be the Person You Want to Date:


happy friends and chef cook cooking in kitchen

It goes that you should become the change you want to see in the world. The same applies when you are looking for a date. If you want to be asked out by a compatible person, make sure that you will make for a compatible partner as well. The more you go out, the more chances you will have of being asked out. If you are someone who enjoys concerts, attend more and more concerts. If you are someone who enjoys cooking,  it will not hurt you to join a cooking class. Turn yourself into the kind of person you find interesting and do things that you have dreamt of doing with your date. Stop looking at couples you find interesting and thinking that if you had a partner you would do these things they do too. Do them on your own and stop waiting for someone else to go out and live your life. You can also use Online Dating Apps which let you add your interests and soon you can find someone who has the same interests as you.


2. Be Open to New Experiences:


Couple kissing outdoors at night

I have realized that many people like to believe that there is a particular type of person they want to be with. They wait forever to meet the ‘right’ one and limit their opportunities to really meet the right person for them. It is good to have preferences, but makes sure that you allow yourself to look outside of the box. For example, If you find someone nice, but he doesn’t meet your criteria of a perfect boyfriend, go out with them once. You never know when you might end up changing your criteria for the ‘right’ one. If you think that you will find your prince charming in a charming place too, you are wrong. Don’t block your opportunities out by believing in such theories. You might end up meeting your prince in the bar around the corner only if you let yourself be open to new opportunities. Love will come to you if you let it.


3. Join the Dating Game:


Couple drinking milkshake

It is important that you go out with new people every once in a while. Even if the connection fails in the end, at the end of the day you will feel happy that you let yourself have a good time. You can use online dating sites to meet someone you find interesting or someone you met at a coffee shop. These dates do not have to be conventionally perfect, but don’t let your dating life go stale by telling yourself that you will only go out with your ‘true love’. How are you supposed to find that love if you are not letting people in every once in a while. Be open to new opportunities and say yes from time to time.


4. Invite Them:


Couple having intimate dinner of summer eveningListen up ladies. It is alright if you are a fan of old-fashioned chivalry, where a man asks the girl out first. But it is important that sometimes you initiate a start to a new beginning. If you find someone interesting, reach out to them. It does not mean that you have to ask your potential boyfriend out for a coffee, but let him know that you are interested. Making eye contact and smiling are two tricks that always work. Chances are, he might end up asking you out or asking for your number. Be welcoming and open when it comes to dating. If you fail to do such, you can always use a dating app to invite men.

Moonlight Drive: A Wild Ride You’ll Never Forget!

Young woman sitting in a car and using smart phone

The car sputtered, coughed, and then with one final gasp, died. I coasted it to the side of the dark, country road and slammed it into park. Now what do I do? I asked myself. It was almost midnight, and I was stranded all alone, surrounded by nothing but soybean fields. Darkness abounded, and there were no lights on the horizon. There was only the star-filled sky and I, feeling foolish and afraid.

I popped the hood, wiggled a few wires, whispered a prayer, and hopped back into the car to give it another try. I held my breath, fighting back tears, while I turned the key. Come on, baby, I begged. Start! It sputtered and promptly died. Just my luck.

My options were few. My cell was dead, so I could either walk in the dark and risk being eaten by wild animals, or I could wait until help came down the lonely road. The coward in me chose the latter. Clint wasn’t expecting me until the next afternoon, so at least he wouldn’t be worried.

My visit to my parents’ home was cut short when I decided to return home a day early. Even after a year, there was still too much tension between my sister and me. Although Shannon is engaged to Nathan, she still blames me for stealing Clint away from her. When the jabs got too sharp, I lashed back. “Maybe if you weren’t such a bitch to him, he wouldn’t have come my way!”

I was tired of defending Clint. Clint and I were having disagreements lately, but he was still my boyfriend. I threw my bags in my old Junker and said my goodbyes. “Sorry, Mom,” I apologized. “I really do have a lot of things to do at home. How about you and Dad visiting us? We do have that sofa that folds out to a bed,” I reminded her.

I was glad to get away. That way, I wouldn’t have to deal with my spoiled, rotted, diva-of-a-sister, who acts like she still wants Clint back. Actually, it was Shannon who cooled the romance. She wanted to keep her options open. One option in particular was Nathan, now her fiancé. What really hurts is that I suspect that Clint is still harboring feelings for Shannon, even though we’ve been together for a year.

I can remember that fateful night, when Clint stopped by to pick up my older and much prettier sister. Shannon left no more than ten minutes earlier. “If Clint calls, tell him I’m working late,” she told me. “I’ll be home at ten; I’ll call him back then.” Then she hopped into Nathan’s new car and headed out for dinner.

There was no way that I was going to lie to Clint, but I didn’t have the heart to tell him that his girlfriend is a cheat. “Gosh, I just got here myself.” I boldly flirted with him when he called. “Why don’t we grab a bite and check and see if she’s still at work?”

“Sure; I’m starved,” he quickly replied.

“Let’s go to Mario’s,” I suggested. In my one-horse town, there’s only one real place to have a good meal. I knew that Shannon was there with Nathan, and I couldn’t wait for Clint to see for himself what a cheat Shannon is. I smiled to myself as we pulled into the parking lot. Sure enough, there was Nathan’s car.

As we waited to be seated, I casually took hold of Clint’s arm. I caught Shannon’s eye from across the room. She looked like she couldn’t make up her mind whether to kill me on the spot or slide under the table with shame.

Clint also saw Shannon sitting there with Nathan. That is the moment that any feeling he had for her died, he told me later. I could feel his icy demeanor as we walked to our table. Her name was not spoken once that night. Clint acted as if I were the only woman on the planet. Holding my chair as I sat down and reaching across the table to hold my hand, Clint made me feel special. I knew it was all a show for Shannon, but I didn’t care. It was about time that I got some attention.

He asked me back to his apartment and I went willingly. He poured some wine and lit candles. I kicked off my shoes and curled up on the couch as Clint put on soft music.

Close-up of young couple with champagne about to kiss“You are so sweet,” he whispered, his fingers trailing down my neck. Dizzy from the wine, I seductively leaned back, allowing him to slowly unbutton my blouse and fondle my breasts. He kissed me fiercely and I responded likewise. I slipped my hands under his shirt, caressing his toned abs. I unzipped his jeans, releasing his strong erection. He moaned as I went down on him.

Fighting for control, Clint pulled me to my feet and led me to the bedroom. Our clothes dropped to the floor. His hands sought out my body, his fingers dipping into my wetness. His lips felt hot as he sucked my breasts. His mouth over mine muffled my cries of pleasure as he thrust deep into me. You belong to me now, I thought as he exploded in me.

Two weeks later, he got a job in the city and asked me to go with him. I never hesitated. Even though he made no promises or pledged his love, I packed my bags and went willingly.

I estimated that I was about forty miles from the city. I made it halfway at least, I thought. If I can just get to a phone, Clint can come for me. Ahh, my knight in shinning armor, save me!

About an hour later, I spotted headlights. What appeared to be a car turned out to be two motorcycles. They roared up beside me and stopped when they saw the hood of my car up.

“You need help?” the bearded biker gruffly asked.

Cautiously, I rolled the window partly down. “It died on me,” I told him.

The two guys poked under the hood while their leather clad girlfriends leaned against the bikes, smoking. “Turn it over,” the biker barked. The car made a feeble attempt, but would not start. “You out of gas?” he growled.

“No, I have half a tank,” I answered through the window crack.

“Then it must be the fuel pump. Nothing I can do. You need a tow truck. I’ll call when I get home.”

“Thank you,” I said timidly.

“Don’t thank me. I’ll call, but don’t expect anyone before morning. You going to be alright?” he asked, his tone softening slightly.

“I’ll be okay.”

They roared off and I was relieved to be alone again. I locked the door and settled back, pulling my jacket tight around me. I guess I’m going to be here awhile. The starry sky was spectacular. I picked out a lucky star and made a wish. Please help Clint and me work out our problems. And then I added, or give me the courage to move on.

A bit later, I saw a single headlight as it came over the knoll toward me. Don’t panic, I told myself, double-checking the door locks.

It was the younger, silent biker; he showed up alone. “I don’t feel right about leaving you here alone,” he started.

“Oh, I’m okay,” I tried to assure him.

“There’s a truck stop on the main highway. You can wait for the tow truck there.”

It made sense, but still I hesitated.

“I promise I won’t hurt you,” he said with a roll of his eyes.

I climbed out of my car and glanced warily at the motorcycle. It looked intimidating. The moon illuminated the polished chrome while masking the color. I guessed it was black, maybe blue. “I never rode on a motorcycle before,” I stammered.

He laughed. “All you have to do is hang on.”

He handed me a helmet. My fingers fumbled with the strap.

The young biker stepped close and pulled the strap tight under my chin. His eyes were as dark as the night and ebony stubble covered his strong jaw. He mounted the bike, reaching around to pull down the foot pegs. “Just like riding a horse.” He smiled for the first time.

I tentatively put my left foot on the peg and swung my leg over the seat. My arms encircled his slim hips. The potent smell of his leather jacket filled my senses as I took deep breaths to calm myself.

“All set?” he asked. I nodded and with a push of a button, the bike roared to life. I didn’t have a clue if my body was trembling or if it was just the vibrations from the bike. There was no doubt, though, about the racing of my heart. “Hang on,” he called over the rumblings as he put the bike in motion.

He started off slow, but then he hit the next gear, and I was thrust backward. That’s when I wrapped my arms even tighter around him and hung on for dear life. I peeked over his shoulder and saw the lines on the highway flash by in the headlights. I squeezed my eyes shut and tried to stay calm. I concentrated on the wind as it tunneled around his body, whipping my long hair.

Much to my surprise, I was beginning to enjoy this wild ride. I leaned into his slim body and let the vibrations surge through me and the cool, night air flow around me. I was tingling all over with excitement. All too soon, we were turning at a neon sign that flashed OPEN ALL NIGHT.

“Wooo!” I exclaimed. “That was fun!” Under the glare of the parking lot’s lights, I could finally take a good look at the beautiful bike that I just rode. It was midnight blue with delicate, silver flames flowing wildly over the tank. The black, leather saddlebags were adored with silver conches. “Your bike is gorgeous,” I gushed.

“Thanks,” was all he said, but he smiled. I liked the way the corners of his dark eyes crinkled when he did. “Let’s get some coffee. You can make your calls, too.”

The solitary waitress motioned us to a booth. Knowingly, she brought us two cups of steaming coffee when she dropped off the menus. I took a sip of coffee and excused myself to go to the ladies’ room. “I’ll be right back.”

I dragged my fingers though my long, mousy hair. Hopeless, I thought. I pulled it up into a quick chignon. That’s one way to deal with the tangles. I dug some change from my pocket and dialed my home number on the payphone. One-thirty in the morning; I bet Clint is sleeping. It rang six times, and then the machine picked up. I hung up. I dropped another quarter in the slot and redialed. “Pick up, Clint,” I whispered under my breath. The phone was on the nightstand—no way could he sleep through it. I’ll try again later.

I slid into the booth, suddenly embarrassed. “I’m sorry. You’ve been so kind and I don’t even know your name.” I blushed. “I’m Sonya.”

He took the hand that I offered, giving it a two-handed squeeze over the table. “They call me Dice.”

“Is that your name?” I asked, puzzled.

“It’s more a warning than a name.” He laughed. “With me, it’s always a gamble. By the way, I went ahead and ordered. You looked hungry.”

Dice looks like a man who naturally takes charge. He has a bold tattoo of tribal feathers around his bicep that told me he’s unconventional. “Thanks, Dice.”

The waitress winked at Dice as she set down bowls of vegetable soup. A delicious aroma filled the air. Suddenly, I was famished. Cheeseburgers followed, the plates heaped with golden French fries.

Dice listened quietly as I nervously rambled. “I don’t know why Clint’s not answering the phone. I’ll try again in a few minutes.” Chances were, he was out with his friends again. Whenever I asked about his whereabouts lately, he got defensive. I quit asking and caring, but I still wondered where and how he was spending his time.

“I called the local garage,” he told me. “The message said they don’t tow on Sundays. And a tow from the city will cost more than that car is worth.”

He had a point there. “What should I do?” I asked.

“I can take you home tonight and your boyfriend can figure that out,” he bluntly stated.

“Are you sure you don’t mind?” Personally, I didn’t mind another ride, but Clint isn’t very handy mechanically and would likely be angry to have to take care of my car troubles.

“It’s no problem,” Dice said. “I live in the city. I’m headed back.”

“I’m sorry about messing up your weekend. Will your girlfriend be mad?” I asked thoughtfully.

He shook his head and I saw a hint of sadness in his eyes. “Tracey’s not my girlfriend,” he protested. He paused and then admitted, “At best, our relationship is toxic. For Tracey, the road goes on forever and the party never ends. I can’t live like that.”

I nodded my head sadly. Toxic, harmful, destructive, poison—those words can describe my relationship with Clint these days. Where is he tonight? I asked myself for the hundredth time.

Changing the subject, I asked, “What do you do for a living?”

“I’m a drug and alcohol counselor. I work mostly on the reservation,” he said.

“You must find that very rewarding.”

“Not when you can’t help the ones you love the most,” he whispered sadly.

I waited until the waitress walked away after refilling our coffee, and then asked, “You want to talk about it?”

“I grew up on the reservation. My mother is Native American, and my father’s white. She died last month from liver failure caused by alcoholism.”

“I’m sorry,” was all the comfort that I could give. I could sense the helplessness of the situation, but I was at a loss for words.

“Let’s move on to a happier subject,” he said. “What do you do in the city?”

I smiled. “I work for a neurotic artist. I’m her office manager slash assistant. Mostly, I make herb tea for her. Caffeine makes her crazier.”

He laughed in a genuine, warm manner. “What were you doing in the middle of nowhere?”

“I had to escape the insanity for a few days,” I lied. I was really running from Clint. The bickering had become unbearable. “I went home to visit my family. It got sort of crazy there, too, so I started home a day early. That road cuts fifteen miles off the trip, I’ll have you know!”

“You have a big family?” he asked.

“Just my mom, dad, and one sister,” I told him. “Shannon and I don’t get along that well.” I went on to tell him briefly of the rift caused by Clint. There I was, pouring my heart out to a perfect stranger; you would think that I was one of Dice’s clients by the way I opened up to him.

“That’s too bad. Nothing should come between family,” he said. Then, in a nonjudgmental tone, he said, “Clint used you as much as you used him. No one wins in those situations.”

“Yeah, you’re right,” I agreed. The one thing that Clint and I have in common is the drive to get even with Shannon. That’s what kept us together. I admit that I do have a lot of guilt for the way that I went after him in the first place.

“Listen to your heart. You can’t change the past, but you don’t have to live with mistakes,” he told me with conviction.

I smiled, a burden lifted. Dice, letting me talk, let me come to my own conclusion. I needed to resolve my differences with my sister. If that means dissolving my relationship with Clint, so be it.

“Ready for another ride?” Dice asked, giving my hand a squeeze.

“Sure.” I grinned back at him. “I live off Jackson Avenue,” I told Dice as we walked to the bike.

“I know the area; just let me know when to turn,” he said.

I shook my hair out as Dice handed me the helmet. He tightened the strap, and then, cupping my chin in his hand, he lightly kissed me. This time, I didn’t hesitate climbing behind Dice. It felt so right. I wrapped my arms confidently around his slim waist as we set off down the highway.

The normally bustling city appeared to be asleep in the Sunday A.M. hours. The streets belonged to only us as we turned down my street. I tapped his shoulder and pointed to my apartment building. Dice pulled in and cut the engine. I scanned the parking lot for Clint’s car; it wasn’t there.

I removed the helmet, shaking out my hair. Dice’s eyes met mine as he took the helmet. “Are you going to be all right?” he asked.

“Clint’s not here,” I told him.

Dice took hold of my arm. “I’ll walk you in.”

Silently, Dice followed me inside the building and waited as I fumbled with the key. Protectively, he stepped into the darkened apartment and switched on the light. Glancing around, I noticed a few items missing. Then I spotted the note, lying on the coffee table. My hands shook as I opened it.

Dear Sonya,

I’m sorry, but I can’t go on living this lie. We were never meant to be together. I used you and I’m sorry. Please find it in your heart to forgive me. I will be by later this week for the rest of my stuff.


I handed the note to Dice and sank slowly to the couch. He read the note and handed it back to me. “I’m sorry. Do you want to be alone or should I stay?” he asked, reaching out to me.

Like a moth to a flame, I went to his arms. “Tonight, I made a wish on a lucky star.”

Couple of lovers on motorbike

Tips on How to Create The Perfect Online Dating Profile

Internet dating, Valentines day concept.

You have just signed up for an online dating site. What next? It’s time to create your online dating profile. When you are creating a profile for yourself through an online dating mobile app, you’re likely trying to put your best foot forward in order to impress potential matches. It’s important to make sure your profile is not only a direct reflection of you, but that it’s put together in an appealing way. You probably wouldn’t be attracted to someone who has a profile that’s filled with a bunch of spelling mistakes and poor language, right? Well, neither would anyone else.

Here are a few helpful tips and tricks you can use to make your perfect online dating profile.


  • Spelling and Grammar: First, make sure your spelling and grammar are up to par. Everything doesn’t have to be 100% perfect, as though you’re writing a paper for school, but if you can’t put together a proper sentence without a dozen errors, people are going to notice, and think you were too lazy to put a lot of time and effort into your profile. Stand out from the crowd by having a professional-looking profile when it comes to your grammar.
  • Describing Yourself Honestly: Don’t be afraid to be honest about yourself, even in specific ways  – that’s what makes you stand out from everyone else. If you’re honest and open upfront, by the time you actually go on a date with someone, there will be less pressure and awkwardness, because they’ll already know about you. That being said, it’s easy for us to sometimes focus on our flaws. This can be done in a sort of ‘joking’ manner, and it’s never a bad idea to humble yourself, but don’t go overboard when talking about your flaws on your profile. On the same note, try not to list off things you don’t like about other people (smokers, people with pets, etc.). While you may not like those things, you’re automatically eliminating a lot of people from your potential search.

Beautiful redhead woman using smartphone

  • Likes and Dislikes: List what you like and what you dislike instead writing “I hate liars, I hate cheaters and I hate smokers”. This will turn off most potential dates of yours. It okay to dislike all that stuff but you have to write positively for both of your likes and dislikes.
  • Choose Profile Photo Wisely: One of the biggest and most important things you can do to get started with your online dating profile is to choose a profile picture that truly captures who you are, and how you want others to see you. It’s the first thing they will see, and many times, a good profile picture will determine whether or not someone will continue reading the rest of your information or not. So, be sure to choose something that shows who you are as an individual, features your best qualities, and shows off a bit of your personality. Consider your profile picture to be the first informal introduction to your next potential date!


Online dating doesn’t have to be overwhelming, especially when you’re setting up a profile for the first time. Follow these simple rules and tips, and in no time, you’ll have put together the perfect profile that reflects who you are, and caters to the type of people you’d want to date. Good luck!

4 Critical Rules To Follow For Safe Summer Flings

Young Man in Swimming Trunks Lying Face to Face With a Young Woman in a Bikini on a Beach

What girl hasn’t dreamed of a fun, flirty, summer fling with a handsome stranger, frolicking through the ocean waves à la Sandy and Danny from Grease? The truth is, they’re kind of hard to come by, as they don’t happen as naturally as the movies make them look (and they definitely don’t involve any musical numbers, unfortunately). But if you for some reason find yourself faced with the opportunity for one of these “relationship quickies” while on your envious European vacation this summer, or even just back at home, there are a few things you should keep in mind. Here are 4 critical rules you should follow to have a fun but safe summer fling that will have all your girlfriends wondering how you snagged something so rare and wonderful!

1. Know who you’re hooking up with.

I know, it sounds a little silly, since there is a good chance you’ll know little to nothing about this person. But before you make any sort of commitment to this person, do a little cyber-stalking to make sure they’re at least semi-normal, and don’t have any sort of sketchy past. If you can’t find them at all on social media, then that might be a cause for alarm, but certainly not the end-all, be-all. Use your discretion, and listen to your gut!

2. Have clear, set boundaries. 

Make sure you’re both aware of what your limits are before you even get into anything. That may sound like a bit of a buzzkill, but if you both have opposite ideas of what your ideal fling consists of, that’s going to be a potential cause for conflict.

3. Tell at least one person what you’re doing. 

As with most things you do, you should let at least one person, like a close friend, know who you’re with, where you’re at/going, and what you’re doing. There’s no need for a play-by-play (please, spare your friend the particularly explicit details. Contrary to popular belief, they don’t really want all of that), but just make sure someone knows your general whereabouts and that you’re available to contact.

4. Don’t get attached. 

Unless there’s a mutual understanding between you two that this fling could turn into something more long-term, try not to take the whole thing too seriously. Because if one person catches feelings and the other doesn’t, feelings could get hurt…and this is the origin story of a crazy ex. That’s where unnecessary glitter bombs come in…and on the opposite end of the spectrum, and a little more dangerous, car-keying, threatening text messages, etc. Know that it’s all just for fun…but take your safety seriously while you’re at it!

Source: Brianna Porter at Never Liked It Anyway

Time to Relax With Summer’s New Mysteries

Book on the beach. Back to school.

I’ll admit that I have been lax in posting–overcome by summer heat and lethargy. But with a vacation ahead, I got busy looking for new mysteries to take along.

I’m a fan of Scandinavian authors, so I quickly picked up the latest Jo Nesbo fare, The Thirst, in which Inspector Harry Hole hunts down a serial murderer targeting female victims on Tinder. Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz, best-selling author of Moriarty and Trigger Mortis, is described as a “classic whodunit worthy of Agatha Christie,” so you know I was intrigued. In the Horowitz tale, the editor of a manuscript by a popular crime author, who sets his tales in Christie-style English villages, begins to suspect that the writer’s latest fiction has hidden clues to a real murder.

the childFar from English villages, Kristen Lepionka’s “uniquely compelling” The Last Place You Look features a tough bisexual private investigator who must solve a 15-year-old murder case in time to save an innocent man from death row. Meanwhile, The Child is the latest offering from New York Times best-selling author Fiona Barton and starts with the discovery of a tiny skeleton by a workman, launching London-based journalist Kate Waters on the trail of a decades-old crime and the darker mystery that underlies it. I also gravitated to The Marsh King’s Daughter by Karen Dionne, because it takes me back to old haunts in Michigan and is described as “sure to thrill fans of The Girl on the Train.” The title alludes to the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale about a child born to a monster and an innocent, and Dionne’s psychological thriller follows Helen Pelletier, who lives in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula wilds, on her search for her father, an escaped convict who had kidnapped her mother and kept her captive for years.

For more new summer mystery options, check out


Katherine Sharma’s family roots are in Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas. But after her early childhood in Texas, she has moved around the country and lived in seven other states, from Virginia to Hawaii. She currently resides in California with her husband and three children. She has also traveled extensively in Europe, Africa and Asia, and makes regular visits to family in India. After receiving her bachelor’s degree. in economics and her master’s degree in journalism from the University of Michigan, Katherine worked as a newspaper and magazine writer and editor for more than 15 years. She then shifted into management and marketing roles for firms in industries ranging from outdoor recreation to insurance to direct marketing. Although Katherine still works as a marketing consultant, she is now focused on creative writing.

Aris Returns: A Vampire Love Story

Psychologist Sarah Hagan thought she had her life under control. She pulled herself together after a painful (and unexpected) divorce. She’s currently dating a successful but neglectful attorney—a relationship that is adequate, if not totally satisfying.

She has a few good friends, lives in a beautiful condo in the heart of Chicago, and loves her work as a therapist. From the outside, it looks like her life is almost perfect.

It only takes one patient — a handsome younger man named Carlos who is on parole for car theft — to put her well-ordered life into a tailspin. Read More


From Kirkus: Psychologist and hypnotist Sarah Hagan is enjoying her newfound success as the author of Psychosis and Past Life Regression, a study whose subject she has obsessed over since her painful divorce. Her private practice flourishing, she’s comforted by a handful of close, supportive friends. When one of these friends, a parole officer named Colleen, calls Sarah asking for her help with Carlos, a troubled young ex-con, Sarah is reluctant.  Read More


An Interview with Aris the Vampire

By Devin Morgan
On many occasions I have interviewed authors just before the release of their newest work, but this is the first time I have ever had a conversation with the main character of an historical fiction novel. I must admit as I sat in the bar of the Biltmore Hotel waiting to have a heart-to-heart with a two-thousand-year old vampire, I had my doubts about the validity of the whole situation as well as the sanity of my editor for sending me on such a wild goose chase. Read the Full Interview

Sleeping With Dogs and Other Lovers

Cynthia Amas has her hands full. In the middle of launching a boutique matchmaking service – Second Acts — amid the sun, surf, and celebrities of Southern California, her own romantic life gets a whole lot more complicated…and steamy. While expertly juggling the needs of her exclusive clients,her own maddeningly irresistible bad-boy, sometime lover unexpectedly returns for a hot and heavy reunion.

Meanwhile, her high-maintenance mother busily concocts harebrained schemes for meddling in Cynthia’s affairs. And her new best girlfriend—the sexy proprietress of a chic Beverly Hills dog-grooming salon—just happens to roll with a purebred Read More


From Kirkus: “The misunderstandings and mischief will keep readers turning pages, and the light-weight content makes for easy enjoyment … erotic adventure for readers more interested in an entertaining read than deep thought.” –Read All The Reviews Here


Love, Lies & Dating: All Tied Up? Holy Dominatrix, Batman!

Dear Second Acts;
This is a hard thing to write about, but here goes. I met this guy who, how should I put this, likes to be dominated. We met in a Whole Foods Market about two months ago. We’re both really into natural foods and cooking, etc. But this guy is big and strong and rugged…not submissive in any way. Read More

Join Mystery Gardeners in Rooting Out Evil

Land Of Fantasy

Spring blossoms perfume the air, and the garden centers are crowded. Luckily, if you’re a mystery lover with a passion for gardening, the shelves are full of fiction to satisfy both interests! Sleuthing gardeners, or gardening sleuths, can find a kindred spirit in Rex Stout’s Nero Wolfe, a food-loving armchair detective who is also an ardent cultivator of orchids; if you’re new to the series, begin with the seminal first entry, Fer-de-Lance.

Or learn some herbalist arts from award-winning Ellis Peters’ Brother Cadfael, a 12th century English monk with a keen eye for poisonous human and plant secrets (A Morbid Taste for Bones is a good starting point).

alcatrazThe English are noted for their gardens and their mysteries, so retired botany professors with detective skills seem to abound. That includes Anthony Eglin’s English Garden mysteries featuring retired botany professor Lawrence Kingston (The Alcatraz Rose is an International Book Awards winner); award-winning author E.X. (Elizabeth) Ferrars’ Andrew Basnett, another retired botany prof; and John Sherwood’s Horticultural series with Celia Grant, a London botanist.


thymeBack in the U.S.A., gardening mysteries bloom in the cozy category, including Washington, D.C., gardener and housewife Louise Eldridge, who digs up crime in the Ann Ripley series that debuted with Mulch. Meanwhile, Susan Wittig Albert offers China Bayles, an herbalist and former attorney in Pecan Springs, Texas; the series debut, Thyme of Death, was a finalist for Agatha and Anthony awards.

A unique choice is Naomi Hirahara’s sleuth Mas Arai, a Hiroshima survivor and Los Angeles gardener. Snakeskin Shamisen won an Edgar Award and was an Anthony Award finalist.

For more gardening-themed mysteries, see


Katherine Sharma’s family roots are in Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas. But after her early childhood in Texas, she has moved around the country and lived in seven other states, from Virginia to Hawaii. She currently resides in California with her husband and three children. She has also traveled extensively in Europe, Africa and Asia, and makes regular visits to family in India. After receiving her bachelor’s degree. in economics and her master’s degree in journalism from the University of Michigan, Katherine worked as a newspaper and magazine writer and editor for more than 15 years. She then shifted into management and marketing roles for firms in industries ranging from outdoor recreation to insurance to direct marketing. Although Katherine still works as a marketing consultant, she is now focused on creative writing.

4 Ways To Get Revenge On Your Ex Without Going Crazy

Figures of couple from paper and scissors.

If you recently went through a nasty break-up and seriously considered picking up a baseball bat with the words “Hot Sauce” on the side and a canary yellow dress to dance through the neighborhood in, this list was made for you. Unfortunately, Beyonce’s Lemonade was just a music video, and it’s not actually acceptable to walk down the street smashing random car windows (bummer, I know). But truthfully, when it comes down to it, getting revenge on your ex is actually a bit of a science; you want to make them feel like you won at life, and sometimes playing the part of the scorned lover does the exact opposite. And while “lemonading” à la Beyonce is always a tempting and sort of natural response, there are way better things to do that don’t involve destroying private property and getting arrested. So forget the glitter bombs, forget the cardboard dick you can ship to your ex for $9.99 with the message of your choice (still pretty cool ideas, to be honest)…here are 4 better ways to get revenge on your ex that’ll make you a better person in the long run!

1. Make new friends!
Young people taking a selfie while eating pizza

Or hang out with the ones you already have, especially if you sort of neglected them when you were in relationship la-la land. We live in a culture that sometimes places more importance and value on romantic relationships than friendships, but some friendships will last longer and be more unconditional than any romantic relationship you’ll ever have. Repeat after me: friends are just as important as boyfriends! Go out dancing, catch a movie…just remember why you fell in love with your friends, and let the good company de-funk you! Nothing will make your ex more annoyed than seeing that you’re out living your life.

2. Work on yourself.
Clients hair is being reconditioned.

Whether that means starting that workout regimen you’ve put off for a while or eating that damn chocolate cupcake you always deny yourself, do whatever is going to make you feel the happiest and like your best self. Get that crazy haircut, buy all new makeup if you want…or just work on some other aspect of yourself, inside or outside, that you think you could improve. The best revenge is having your ex see that you’re a better person without them!

3. Take a trip!
Traveler looks at landscape

Even if just for a day, get out of town and go see a place you’ve never seen before. The world is huge and full of potentially amazing life experiences, and sometimes when you get cooped up and trapped in the town of your breakup, you forget that, and then you get stir crazy. That’s when the “Lemonade” thoughts begin! Get away for a while with some good friends and breathe some fresh, different air. If you really want to piss off your ex, Instagram some amazing pics of the trip (but ultimately, you should be posting these pictures for yourself).

4. Rebound…or don’t.
Romance in a restaurant

This is one thing that depends on the person. If you feel like finding a rebound will just make you feel worse (or make you actually miss your ex…God forbid), then take some time and enjoy being single, and jump back into the dating pool when you’re ready. But if you’re ready to get back out there already, and you’re not just forcing it to make your ex mad or jealous (although they might be, which is a side perk) then do you! You might’ve started it all off trying to get revenge on your ex, but when all is said done, you might just find that you’ve moved on.

Source: Brianna Porter from Never Liked It Anyway