It’s okay to sully a good reputation sometimes.

On Thursday, my co-podcaster, Shaun, and husband guy, takes over the blog.

He’s adorable. I hope you’ll read what he says even if he does occasionally sound like a surfer dude from the 1990s or Captain Pontification. And no, we don’t always agree. 🙂 And lots of times his jokes get me all embarrassed.

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I am having a really hard time with this blog today. I feel badly because Carrie can’t post it until I have written it and I hate being the last thing she does at night.

Unless it’s in the bedroom!

Hopefully you laughed at that, because right now, as you read this, even if it’s three days later, I am still getting berated for sullying her good reputation. And deservedly so!

Sometimes I can’t help myself. I say things that are funny! Okay, they are funny to me. I tend to think, in comedic terms, as if I am a very popular (and wealthy) stand-up comedian. Yet, after all of these years, I still forget that most successful stand-up comics who make jokes about loved ones probably run these jokes by said loved ones.

That will be my new excuse when I get in trouble for making a joke that involves Carrie. “I was just trying out a new joke for my stand-up routine, baby.”

I will give you a perfect example. The other night, we were talking about how we both still wanted to go on an extended backpacking trip. Part of the Appalachian Trail or five nights out in the woods anywhere, for example.

I looked at Carrie with longing in my eyes and she said, “Of course you will have to carry most of the weight for our supplies.”

And this is a true statement. I am bigger and stronger than Carrie by nature and sheer physical size. However, Carrie also has chronically pained shoulders and bad knees. As in, both knees. As in she has to wear knee braces when running or hiking.

So, I know that if we ever go on a hiking trip where we spend the night or multiple nights in the woods, camping, I will indeed be carrying most of the weight. This does not bother me one iota! In fact, it makes me feel good and proud. All of those manly things that make us macho, caretaking, personality types feel good about ourselves.

And I looked Carrie in the eye, very lovingly, and I said, “If you were a pack mule, we would have to put you down.”

She laughed! She laughed so hard that she was holding her stomach and rolling on the couch. Then she got a gleam in her eye, an evil gleam!

She looked at me. “I am going to post that.”

“Okay, just make sure you give some back story.”

No, response from Carrie who was busy typing away on her phone.

We had a good rest of the night and I got up the next morning and I go on Facebook so I can share Carrie’s posts and I see this:

Shaun just told me that if I was a donkey I would be put down. I honestly don’t know how we are still married. Edited to add: Oh! I know how! Because I am patient and forgiving like a good pack animal. Lol

I am a lucky man! I love my wife more than anything! I do and I just want to say that love is about forgiveness and understanding!

I don’t know who had more forgiveness and understanding in my story, but it doesn’t matter, without, nothing works well!

Remember that and remember to always LOVE YOUR WAY THROUGH IT!

Now, go make somebody laugh,

Shaun

The Places We Hide by Carrie Jones
The Places We Hide by Carrie Jones (That’s me. If you click the image, it will bring you to the Amazon page!)

The third book in Rosie and Seamus’s story of adventure, mystery, and death is here!

I hope you’ll support me, have a good read, and check it out!

great new mystery
romantic suspense set in Bar Harbor Maine

Sometimes the treasure is not worth the hunt . . . .

When a little boy goes missing on a large Maine island, the community is horrified especially almost-lovers Rosie Jones and Sergeant Seamus Kelley. The duo’s dealt with two gruesome serial killers during their short time together and are finally ready to focus on their romance despite their past history of murders and torment.

Things seem like they’ve gone terribly wrong. Again. Rosie wakes up in the middle of the woods. Is she sleepwalking or is something more sinister going on?

What at first seems like a fun treasure hunt soon turns into something much more terrifying . . . and they learn that things are not yet safe on their island or in their world. If they want to keep more people from going missing, Rosie and Seamus have to crack the puzzle before it’s too late.

To buy it, click here, and let me know! I might send you something!

Mayo Vs Miracle Whip, Ruth Bader Ginsberg and Chill

Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Mayo Vs Miracle Whip, Ruth Bader Ginsberg and Chill
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Ruth Bader Ginsberg died last week and our timelines lit up with people mourning her death and some people exulting in it.

Politics are often polarizing, but grief is often communal with people experiencing different amounts and aspects of it, but shared grief can be such a powerful thing.

Kindness matters. Even to the dead. Action and beliefs matter. Especially to the still living.

No matter what you think of her court decisions, which were meant to heal the ‘fractures in federal law,’ Ginsberg has some very good advice about marriage and words, which is why we’re talking about her now.

Back in 2016, Justice Ginsberg wrote about her mother-in-law’s life advice.

“’In every good marriage,’ she counseled, ‘it helps sometimes to be a little deaf.’ I have followed that advice assiduously, and not only at home through 56 years of a marital partnership nonpareil. I have employed it as well in every workplace, including the Supreme Court. When a thoughtless or unkind word is spoken, best tune out. Reacting in anger or annoyance will not advance one’s ability to persuade.”

Ginsberg

Ginsberg talked about how both her mother’s push for her to be independent and her professor’s focus on language influenced her, propelling her to rise in the ranks to become a Supreme Court justice.

“At Cornell University, my professor of European literature, Vladimir Nabokov, changed the way I read and the way I write. Words could paint pictures, I learned from him. Choosing the right word, and the right word order, he illustrated, could make an enormous difference in conveying an image or an idea.”

Ginsberg

Words influence thought influence action. Putting them in the right order? It makes all the difference.

She also spoke about the dynamics on the court where nine justices sit, saying,

“Despite our strong disagreements on cardinal issues — think, for example, of controls on political campaign spending, affirmative action, access to abortion — we genuinely respect one another, even enjoy one another’s company.

“Collegiality is crucial to the success of our mission. We could not do the job the Constitution assigns to us if we didn’t — to use one of Justice Antonin Scalia’s favorite expressions — ‘get over it!’”

That might be the best marriage advice of all.

Ginsberg excerpted in the NYT

WRITING TIP FOR LIFE

Your word choice and word order matter. Be selective.

DOG TIP FOR LIFE

Getting over it allows you to feel better and make your relationships stronger. Dwelling is never a good move. And selective hearing? Giving yourself time to react so that you don’t act rashly? Always a wise choice.

SHOUT OUT

SHOUT OUT!

The music we’ve clipped and shortened in this podcast is awesome and is made available through the Creative Commons License. 

Here’s a link to that and the artist’s website. Who is this artist and what is this song?  It’s “Summer Spliff” by Broke For Free.

And we have a new podcast, LOVING THE STRANGE, which we stream live on Carrie’s Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn on Fridays. Her Facebook and Twitter handles are all carriejonesbooks or carriejonesbook.

Here’s the link.

best positive podcast - Be brave friday
Send your Be Brave Friday stories to us here! Just hit the contact form or message us at carriejonesbooks@gmail.com
best podcast ever
loving the strange the podcast about embracing the weird

HELP US AND DO AN AWESOME GOOD DEED

Thanks to all of you who keep listening to our weirdness on the DOGS ARE SMARTER THAN PEOPLE podcast and our new LOVING THE STRANGE podcast.

We’re sorry we laugh so much… sort of. 


Please share it and subscribe if you can. Please rate and like us if you are feeling kind, because it matters somehow. There’s a new episode every Tuesday!

Thanks so much for being one of the 263,000 downloads if you’ve given us a listen!

One of our newest LOVING THE STRANGE podcasts is about the strange and adorably weird things people say?

And one of our newest DOGS ARE SMARTER THAN PEOPLE episode is about fear setting and how being swallowed by a whale is bad ass.


And Carrie has new books out! Yay!

You can order now! It’s an adult mystery/thriller that takes place in Bar Harbor, Maine. Read an excerpt here!

Happy Anniversary or How are We Still Married?

Someone just told me (Carrie) that we weren’t really having a wedding anniversary because:

  1. We are celebrating it a few days late.
  2. We both forgot about it until the Thursday before the Sunday of the anniversary.
  3. Apparently, we didn’t talk about it on Facebook.

Gasp! Who knew those were the criteria to keep your anniversary legit?

Here’s our bonus podcast about it.

Spoiler Alert: This is not a poignant bonus podcast.



HELP US AND DO AN AWESOME GOOD DEED

Thanks to all of you who keep listening to our weirdness on the DOGS ARE SMARTER THAN PEOPLE podcast as we talk about random thoughts, writing advice and life tips. We’re sorry we laugh so much… sort of. Please share it and subscribe if you can. Please rate and like us if you are feeling kind, because it matters somehow. There’s a new episode every Tuesday!Preformatted


BE A PART OF THE PODCAST!

Hey! If you download the Anchor application, you can call into the podcast, record a question, or just say ‘hi,’ and we’ll answer. You can be heard on our podcast! Sa-sweet!

No question is too wild. But just like Shaun does, try not to swear, okay?

Here is the link to the mobile app and our bonus podcast below.

How To Be Memorable as Your Self or Your Character

Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
How To Be Memorable as Your Self or Your Character







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Sometimes in life we want to be memorable, right?

And other times? Not so much.

Shaun is so tall and formidable that he doesn’t have much choice in being memorable or not. Carrie? She can fade into walls if she wants to.

In writing, there are some pretty simple things you should do to make sure people remember your character.

Mention the ACTUAL CHARACTER A LOT

Talk about that character every 30-40 pages. People forget the characters they don’t see. This is true in real life too. Remind people you are out there.

Give them a cool name. Carrie Jones? Not a cool name.

Give.

Just give. In real life and in writing, giving matters. People remember kindness.

Give them something that makes them stand out physically and intrinsically.

What do I mean by that? Give them something like a tattoo, a way of bending their foot to the side when they talk. Give them a strong personality trait. Do the work to make them memorable.

Focus.

In real life, it’s the people who focus on one goal, strategy, process who tend to make a big bang.

Embrace Your Quirkiness.

This is linked to that memorable trait. Being quirky might make you a bullied kid, which is basically hell, but when you’ve embraced that difference, your originality, your authenticity? That’s when people remember you.

If you’re in a room full of a dozen white guys in suits, none of them are going to pop out. It’s the woman in the flowing skirt that you’re going to end up remembering.

Dog Tip for Life
Dog Tip for Life

Dog Tip of the Pod:

Barking is a good way to remind people that you exist even if you’re stuck in the house during a blizzard. They will still hear you if you bark!

Remind people that you’re out there. Silence isn’t memorable. It’s oppressive. Your voice deserves to be heard.

Writing Tip of the Cast:

What makes your book characters memorable also makes you memorable. Don’t be afraid to be your authentic, original quirky self.

We know all about quirky. These are NOT our normal clothes.

Plea for help

Hey, um… if you enjoyed this podcast and post, we’d be so super grateful if you’d help it spread by emailing it to a friend, or sharing it on Twitter or Facebook or Pinterest or subscribing to it on iTunes or Stitcher or rating it there or somewhere. Thank you! We know it’s a super small thing, but it means so much to us.

WRITING NEWS AND STUFF

I (Carrie) will be in Ontario Canada presenting this weekend and at Book Expo America, June 1, at 11:30 in the Lerner booth. Come visit!

Carrie Jones Books blog, NYT bestselling children's book author and podcaster and teacher
This is what I look like so you know who to say ‘hi’ to. These are my normal clothes.

THE CLASS AT THE WRITING BARN

The awesome 6-month-long Writing Barn class that they’ve let me be in charge of!? It’s happening again in July. Write! Submit! Support! is a pretty awesome class. It’s a bit like a mini MFA but way more supportive and way less money. There are more details at the link

PRAISE FOR CARRIE JONES AND WRITE. SUBMIT. SUPPORT:

“Carrie has the fantastic gift as a mentor to give you honest feedback on what needs work in your manuscript without making you question your ability as a writer. She goes through the strengths and weaknesses of your submissions with thought, care and encouragement.”

I swear, I did not pay anyone to say that. I didn’t even ask them to say it. The Writing Barn just told me that the feedback had intensely kind things like that. People are nice.

FLYING AND ENHANCED – THE YOUNG ADULT SCIENCE FICTION SERIES

These books are out there in the world thanks to Tor.

What books? Well, cross Buffy with Men in Black and you get… you get a friends-powered action adventure based in the real world, but with a science fiction twist. More about it is here. But these are fun, fast books that are about identity, being a hero, and saying to heck with being defined by other people’s expectations.

This quick, lighthearted romp is a perfect choice for readers who like their romance served with a side of alien butt-kicking actionSchool Library Journal

TIME STOPPERS THE MIDDLE GRADE SERIES OF AWESOME

Time Stoppers’s third book comes out this summer. It’s been called a cross between Harry Potter and Percy Jackson, but with heart. It takes place in Acadia National Park in Bar Harbor, Maine. I need to think of awesome ways to promote it because this little book series is the book series of my own middle grade heart. Plus, I wrote it for the Emster. Plus, it is fun.

And finally, I’ve added a contact form in case you’d like to be on my email list. If you subscribe to my posts via WordPress then those come to your email whenever I post. To do that click on SUBSCRIBE, but this is to sign up for my random newsletter, which I basically only do when something big happens like a book is coming out or I’m going on tour or something  or I’m giving away a story for free – so basically two to three times a year.

Your Voice Is Your Own

Your voice… who you are… it matters.

Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Your Voice Is Your Own







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In Episode Eight, we learn a little bit about voice. Also, in our ‘voice experiment,’ Shaun lets loose with a couple of f-bombs, so I’ve marked this episode as explicit. The man cannot be controlled.

Whether you’re writing or just living, your voice is an integral part of what you are communicating to the world.

www.carriejonesbooks.blog

Writer Tip Of The Pod:

Voice isn’t just about your sentence structure and word choice; it’s how your narrator sees the world. It’s what drives them. It’s the subconscious experiences that have created their reality.

To get to the voice of your character, you have to be your character.

Let the kindness in your heart be reflected in your voice.  

Dog Tip For Life:

Don’t be afraid to let your inner world be part of your voice. Don’t be afraid to extend kindness to others. Let the kindness in your heart be reflected in your voice.

Bonus Podcast Where Shaun Says Why He Stopped Reading

Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Bonus Podcast Where Shaun Says Why He Stopped Reading







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In this quick bonus podcast, Carrie interviews Shaun and learns some sad, sad truths about what it’s like being married to a writer like her.

 

carriejonesbooks.blog