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Saturday, November 21, 2015

BRAND NEW: Belinda Boring Bookstore!

I'm so excited to share that I've added a new feature to my blog - a place where you can one-click not only the books I've written, but other stories by my favorite authors as well as movies, TV shows, music, and fandom items!! This happens through Amazon and it's another way to spread my love for all things SWOON and GEEK with everyone! 

Click on the link below to check it out OR look to the right side of this page and under the "Explore My Site!" option, you'll see AMAZON BOOKSTORE. Just making it easier for everyone to feed their addictions and passions.

Keep checking back and see what new things I've added <3 

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Bittersweet Melody - A Conversation Between Funkos

I was minding my own business this morning and overheard a conversation between two of my Funkos ...

Amy Farrah Fowler: 
Have you read Bittersweet Melody yet?

Charlie Bradbury: 
I'm walking on sunshine ... of course, I have! Holy cow. Cooper makes my nerdy girl hormones tingle.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Tuesday Story Insight: Cooper and Owen's Song

One of my FAVORITE things about writing is the fun I have creating playlists for each story. Sometimes songs overlaps but then there are the songs that come in and POW ... help define the book and give that emotional connection to characters.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

The Day I Was A G.I.S.H.W.H.E.S Proxy!

Remember when I said I was on a secret mission? Finally, the story can be told! (Click here for FB post)

Each year, actor Misha Collins does something EPIC called GISHWHES. (Stands for Greatest International Scavenger Hunt the World Has Ever Seen!) I've wanted to participate for the past 2 years now but have always been on a book deadline. DRATS!

This year, because I lived close-ish to one of the challenges, I was asked to be a GISHWHES proxy! And man, did I learn a lot as well as having an INSANE amount of fun.

What did I learn? Let me tell you how the day went ...

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Insight Into A Selfie Junkie.

I guess before I start with the purpose of my post, I should offer up a little background about me.

  • Before I became an author, I worked in the Behavioral Health field as a Program Coordinator and Peer Support Specialist at a day program that catered to mental health and substance abuse clients. I created and taught groups, helped with life skills, and offered support as a peer. I held that job for about 3-4 years and was pretty good at it.
  • I attended college and earned my AA in Psychology. I was also taking online classes for Chemical Dependency.
  • I was a qualified class instructor for a few N.A.M.I (National Alliance of Mental Health) classes, trained to help provide support to not only those dealing with mental health diagnoses, but also to family members.
  • I have attended countless training sessions and work shops.
  • I have read a ton of articles for both education and work purposes.

But my experience doesn't end there.

  • I have been the recipient of mental health services, receiving my own personal list of diagnoses.
  • I have worked hard through YEARS of therapy.
  • I have attended countless support groups.
  • I have sat in meetings discussing care.
  • I have been prescribed medication after medication.
  • I've waged a war, faced personal demons, and WON.

So professionally and personally, I've been exposed to a particular book called the DSM, which stands for the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for mental illnesses. I studied it in classes to help me for a future career in counseling. I looked through it to understand the labels I was given from doctors. I became familiar with the coding as I filled out daily paperwork for billing.

I think it's pretty safe to say I'm not a newbie when it comes to mental health and all it's intricacies. For the most part, the DSM in any version, was simply a book that offered information to help professionals categorize their clients. Find what label matches the symptoms and you were one step closer to understanding how best to support the person.

Or in my case, it was a pain in the ass definition that made me feel embarrassed and ashamed. Not everyone feels the same way - everyone experiences things differently. But I always saw it as evidence that I was broken. While it was merely a book of definitions and policy codes, I took it a step further.

It defined ME for years until finally I healed enough to place aside the labels and be me, again.

Anyway, I digress. Seriously, I'm getting to the point for this, I promise. Sometimes I like to ramble ... like now. Ha!

An article popped up in my Facebook newsfeed yesterday that made me chuckle, cringe, and feel a little sad -- it looks like the DSM has had a new disorder added to the list ...


Like any inquisitive person, I instantly went to Google and did some research. Sure enough, I found a ton of links that said it was in fact a hoax, but still, it got me thinking.

I love taking selfies. If you took on my phone and looked in my photo gallery, you'd see a bunch. Most are of me either smiling or pulling some kind of face, but they're there.

And I'm not embarrassed to admit that.

While it might not actually be a real disorder, the act of taking selfies has definitely stirred up people's opinions. Some have no issue while others hate them ... and hate those who take and share them on social media. It's not uncommon for me to stumble across comments and posts about it, and for the most part, I scroll past. But it has made me ask myself what's so appealing about selfies.

I'm sure this isn't anything life altering and it won't solve any world problems, but just in case anyone's interested, or can relate to the following ... here's how I feel about it:

I'm not going to lie. There was a period last year where I turned to my hubby and asked him, "Am I vain? I swear I keep looking at my reflection!" Then he'd sit and watch me pull faces for my camera. I wouldn't have blamed him if he'd replied, "Ahhhh, yeah!" but he didn't. He understood.

For years, I quit acknowledging my reflection. I hated photos. I would avoid looking in mirrors and shiny surfaces. I seriously stopped registering what I looked like. Why? Because I HATED what I saw. Years of medication and eating my emotions had lead me to being over 350lbs. Whenever I DID see myself, it was instantly followed by a barrage of personal insults and derogatory comments. I was disgusted so I tuned myself out. While I healed from a lot of past trauma, my self image remained fractured.

Then two years ago, I made a life changing decision -- I had weight loss surgery. It wasn't a decision I made lightly, first trying diets, nutritionists, consistent exercise. But when I realized time was running out on getting pregnant and knowing my weight was a HUGE detriment, I opted to do something drastic.


Welcome back, my life. Oh how I missed you.

Want to know what happens after that kind of surgery? You lose A LOT of weight. 100+ lbs for me.

Want to know what happens to the girl who hated her reflection because she felt fat and gross ... but now looks different?

She doesn't stop looking at her reflection. Partly because I seriously couldn't believe it was ME. I became this whole new person and for the first time in a LONG time, I didn't cringe at what I saw. My confidence grew. My smiles grew. I ceased being this "thing" and became a person.

So you better believe I took more photos. And yes, that meant selfies. For a while there it seemed every selfie I took appeared different -- revealing pieces of myself. It was like being introduced for the first time.

"Wow, I have cheekbones."
"I lost five chins!"
"Damn, I can actually see the cords in my neck!!"

The most profound one for me? "Wow ... I'm a person!"

So while others may joke and be opinionated about how narcissistic people are who constantly take selfies, I focus on MY truth ... I worked DAMN HARD to get where I am today. If taking a selfie reminds me of how much I have to be grateful for, then watch me take a bunch! Whenever I feel myself slipping back into old negative self image patterns ... my selfies will be a powerful reminder of the sacrifices I've made.

I am ME.

If someone needs to judge that harshly, or heaven forbid, throw a diagnosis at me then so be it. They can place the label with my others ... they're over there, collecting dust, unimportant. They are what they are ... mere words.

Anywho, I just thought it might be interesting to get an insider's point of view. Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments!

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Things I've Learned From My Dad: Work Ethics

I came across an old photo of my dad just now that reminded me of what an amazing example he is of hard work. I've learned a lot from my father but something that really sticks out is his work ethics. For as long as I can remember, he's always encouraged me to work hard in everything I do and not be afraid to learn new things.

Years ago, I saw his work resume and was astounded! After moving to Australia from England, newly married to my mum, he worked in a prison as a guard. That was his ONLY job until he retired ... no hopping from career to career yet his resume was THICK. He started as a guard and finished an high level executive - his secret?

Make yourself indispensable. 
Don't settle for where you are.
Learn everything you can about your position.
Look for ways to improve. 
Be the first in line for training.
Ask for opportunities to grow and advance.
Don't be afraid to apply for things.

And finally,  be the kind of employee your boss NEEDS. 

I've tried to follow that advice all my life and it works! So thanks, Dad. It's been an invaluable lesson and one I've tried imparting to my girls!

P.S. My dad is the one crouching. This was taken in England before he moved - he helped build roads in County Durham.

#‎rolemodel #‎awesomedad #‎family #‎prouddaughter #‎workethics

#AlwaysKeepFighting #LetsTalk

Depression sucks. It leaves you feeling alone and broken. It isolates you and makes things so dark it's hard to hold onto hope. Sometimes it only stays a little bit. Other times it just never seems to go away - no matter what you do to try and regain your sense of self and happiness. It's taken me SEVEN months to pull myself out. Don't let appearances fool you - depression is often something that strokes behind the scenes.

Jared Padalecki, the actor who plays Sam Winchester on Supernatural and Dean on Gilmore Girls, started a campaign called "Always Keep Fighting" - to bring awareness to depression, self injury, and suicide - to help people know they're NOT alone. The response has been EPIC as people step forward and share their story. I personally have had issues with all three of these things ... my butterfly tattoo represents my own commitment not to self injure. The struggle IS real for so many of us. It gives me hope that people are not afraid to speak up now. It's no longer okay to hide it in the closet or something to be ashamed over.

Jared recently had to cancel appearances. It's easy to become overwhelmed and overstimulate yourself to the point where things spiral. He's exhausted himself and not only am I proud that he respects himself enough to know his limits but that the #SPNFamily loves him enough to support him.

He may never see this and that's okay. I don't ever do things for that reason. I just wanted to say this ... Jared, we stand by you. We love you. And please, #AlwaysKeepFighting. You make a difference. We see YOU beyond the characters you portray. Do whatever you need to feel better.

And for those who also deal with depression - I love you. My heart is with you. You're in my prayers.

We are not alone. We have value. Hold on to those around you. It will pass, I promise.

Hugs and kisses to you all! xoxoxo

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Geeking Out ... Doctor Who Style!

For those of you who follow me on social media, it's not a surprise to see that I am a complete GEEK when it comes to certain fandoms. Sometimes I wonder if I looked up FANGIRL in the Webster dictionary, would my photo be there?

Maybe. Probably.

What I do know is I wouldn't be alone. When you love a fandom, you become part of a universal family - one that brings you joy and laughter ... and ANGST as we huddle together to ride out the whims of the shows writers.

And OH. MY. GOSH. 


There's nothing like the excitement that comes from being part of something epic - something totally inspiring that allows you to be a kid, even as an adult.

Which is why I'm SOOOOOO excited for the end of this month. I recently went to my first convention and loved it! The Star Wars fandom blew me away and I walked away with a deeper love for the movies and cartoons. I understood why my hubby goes completely nuts over it.

At the end of this month we're going to Phoenix Comic Con and I am beyond giddy over it! This is the first multi-fandom event we're going to and I decided to celebrate the occasion by cosplaying ... well my version of it! I have HUGE respect for those who dress up in elaborate outfits - those who show their love by representing the shows they cherish.

So, who am I representing? *insert snicker* Like you all had to ask ....


I still have things to get and make BUT my wig came in today - the first time I'll have LONG, LUXURIOUS, THICK ... BLUE hair! How cool is that?

Next step is making my TARDIS tutu, because hello? Every girl needs to wear one! I'll make sure to take more photos of the process and then when it's all completed. Until then ...

I'm ready to become the next companion!

#PhxComicConOrBust #Whovian4Life #Waiting4TheDoctor
#GeeksUnite #KidAtHeart

Looking For A New Book Boyfriend?

Have you claimed your new book boyfriend from one of my stories? Are you looking for someone to weaken your knees, steal your breath, and leave you craving more? There's a book boyfriend for everyone - paranormal romance, urban fantasy, paranormal fantasy, historical fantasy, and NA contemporary romance ... take your pick or choose them ALL!

Here's what some readers had to say ...

"Quinn is the bad boy we all love to hate, but bad can be REALLY tasty!" 
~ Lisa Markson, I Pimp My Authors.

"Mason rocks my socks! He is THE hottest Alpha you will ever have the pleasure of meeting!" 
~ Amy Chris, Weet Weet's Bookshelf.

"Aithne's name may have been a prayer to his lips, but Hadrian is like the salvation to my soul. He's like a Fae Peeta!" 
~ Angel Downey, Amazon Reader.

"If Oliver told me to come with him, I wouldn't think twice about it. I would be gone!!"
 ~ Laura McGee, Amazon Reader.

"I don't think I've ever wanted to LICK a vampire until I met Devlin the Enforcer. Yum!!"
 ~ Lacey Weatherford, USA Today bestselling author of the Crush series.

Book Boyfriends ...

Mason, Daniel, Devlin, and Vlad
The Mystic Wolves series
(The Mystic Wolves, Forget Me Not, Testing Fate, Forever Changed, Savage Possession, Darkness Unleashed, and Last Wolf Standing.)

Oliver Nicholls
Loving Liberty

William and Hadrian
Enchanted Hearts

Ryder McKinley

Quinn Michaels
Broken Promises

EeNee, MeeNee, MiNee, Mo ...

So many SWOONY choices!

**Don't forget: The Mystic Wolves and Enchanted Hearts are currently FREE on all book retailers! Don't miss out!**

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Red Letter Days: What I Learned At Star Wars Celebration

If you've been following me across my social media accounts, you'll have noticed I recently went to my first ever convention. I am such a fan girl and lover of all things GEEK so when I was asked to go to the Star Wars Celebration event in Anaheim this past weekend, I jumped at the chance. Although it's very much my husband's FAVORITE fandom in the world ... no, in the GALAXY ... I couldn't shake the feeling I needed to be there. I always try and trust my gut.

Boy, was I glad I did! Not only was it EPIC but also surprisingly profound. I plan on sharing the things I discovered attending, but for today, this message ... this experience is the one echoing most in my heart.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Indulge Your Paranormal Romance ADDICTION!!

Are you ready for a new sexy paranormal romance addiction?

Have you started the Mystic Wolves series but need to catch up on the recent swoon and angst-filled lives of Mason, Darcy, Daniel, and Devlin? 

Whether you love shifters, vampires, witches, or them all ...
  become a proud member of the Mystic Wolves family

#‎ShareWithFriends #‎FamilyNeedsToSwoonAsWell #HowAboutYourNeighbors #ShamelessIKnow

Begin your journey with The Mystic Wolves (#1) which is currently FREE across all retailers! 

A TOP 100, multi-list bestselling series ... 
avid readers can't get enough!!

Apple iBooks:

Here's a short teaser:

“You want to be wooed, huh? I’m not sure I know how to do that. You may have to tell me what to do.” The cocky grin he’d been wearing suddenly became softer, his eyes twinkling, and I caught a flash of the boyish charm I’d fallen for.
“Oh no, I’m not explaining anything to you. You should know by now, Mr. Almighty-I-Am-Alpha. Just know this—if you don’t get it right … you’re a dead man.”
He let out a rich, throaty laugh, and the sound made the soles of my feet tingle. In fact, it made everything tingle, and I braced myself. I was about to get ravished.

Happy reading, everyone! 


Tuesday, March 3, 2015

The Butterfly

I believe everything happens for a reason. That things aren't always just random events, but can work together to bring hope and meaning. I love butterflies. I love what they represent and the reminder that transformations are possible--that we can be beautiful and fly. That through struggle, no matter how painful, we have potential for greatness. It's not a matter of "if" but "when'.

I was researching one of my next writing projects and was amazed to discover that when I chose the butterfly to be my totem, it had more meaning than I could've ever imagined. Whatever story I work on, I put pieces of me into it. (those who've read the author note in Loving Liberty understand). I'm just so excited to see how everything comes together. Once again, I know I'm on the right path ♥ 

Just wanted to share! *grins*

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Hi, My Name Is Belinda And I'm A Romance-A-Holic

**Recycled Post from 2011**

Hi, my name is Belinda and
 I'm a Romance-A-Holic.
A Swoon Junkie.

It's been a good ... 5-6 years now since my hubby brought me my first romance book and life hasn't been the same since. I was a huge reader growing up, with my nose always in a book but a period of my life came when I didn't read because I was too busy trying to survive. A trip to a Harry Potter movie with a close friend of mine reintroduced me back to the joy and power of reading and my love for it spread like wildfire. I devoured everything young adult and found that I was completely fascinated with all things paranormal. Then it was Christmas and I remember my hubby passing me a present, saying that he hoped I liked it. Knocking on it and hearing the noise that bounced back, it wasn't hard to guess it was a book  - Dark Curse by Christine Feehan. "I know babe, it's not young adult but it looks good so maybe you should give it a go." I cringed a little because it was an "adult romance" *insert gasp here* and didn't everyone say that books like this were nothing but diluted smut? Something drew me in though, maybe my inner radar for all things amazing was going crazy so I picked it up and started reading. The rest, my friends, is history.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

You Are Important. You Matter.

I saw this in a cool Geek group I'm a part of on Facebook and it was definitely the kind of advice I've needed to hear lately. 

Life isn't always fair. It can change in the blink of an eye, and unfortunately sometimes those changes will rock you to your very foundation. You'll start questioning who you are, what kind of purpose do you now serve, and whether you truly are as important and value in the grand scheme of things. It's painful asking those questions because it requires you to hear the truth, not the lies you whisper to yourself.

"I'm broken now."
"I'm useless."
"I was given one role and I failed."
"I hold absolute no value. Just toss me aside."

Those discouraging words hurt almost as much as the event that caused the avalanche of doubt and fear. But there's one thing I know for certain - where there is bad there is good ... Darkness there is light ... Negative there is positive. You can balance yourself out if you know how.
Like my best friend told me, you can change your coat. For the sake of this post, let's say change your bow tie. Bow ties are cool!

I'm thankful for the Doctor. To others it may be a family member, a friend, a song, a memory, a story, a show ... Something that grounds you into joy and reminds you that life doesn't always suck and it is possible to rise above the insecurities.

So, today, as I struggle to sleep and reclaim my life from depression I see one of my beloved Time Lord, a person I admire, point at me and say, "YOU ARE IMPORTANT." Three easy enough words but they carry the weight of truth.

Each of us are important. 
We are relevant. We are enough. We most definitely matter.

Never forget that - WE MATTER. 

Just some food for thought on a long hard day. Sweet dreams and keep on swimming!

Friday, January 16, 2015

So I Was Thinking: Eggs And Potatoes.

I saw this on Pinterest and while I get what it's saying, it got me thinking.

Can't I be both? I want to be hard/tough enough to face whatever life throws my way and not break under pressure ... yet keep a soft heart that still hopes for the best, sees the good in people and life while keeping a positive attitude.

I don't want to lose what makes me ME.

Sometimes it's hard. REEEEALLLLLY hard. Sometimes just the slightest thing causes a crack and there's no holding back tears. It's in those moments where a choice has to be made - do you shake your fist at the sky with anger, wondering why the hell must you endure something so unfair OR do you cry, feel what you need to before taking a deep breath and going on.

Life's going to happen regardless and sometimes ... sometimes shitty things happen to good people. Sometimes we don't get the outcome we want - what we've dreamed for - what we desperately long for. It's a bitter pill to swallow.

But, we'll survive. We'll get through it.

We'll adjust and keep on going.

So, be an egg AND a potato. Actually ... just be you. You'll get through it. I'll get through it. What doesn't kill you, defines and refines you, right?


Saturday, January 10, 2015

Recycled Post: How Do You Decide Which Book To Buy?

(This post was originally released 1/11/2012 on my first blog, The Bookish Snob)

I've taken to stalking the lists over at Amazon - both the Top 100 paid and free - for my Kindle. Heaven knows, I don't need any more books, but I'm addicted and I'm planning for the apocalypse where I'll need to bunker down and wait it out. I'm determined to be prepared and if I have a full Kindle, I'll be entertained *shakes head* Yeah, my husband didn't buy that either.

I caught myself doing something, and made me wonder whether I was the only one. How do other readers decide what to gets - especially amongst the free? You would assume a free ebook means you automatically click, but I know that's not the case for me. Don't get me wrong, when I first got my Kindle I went "click" happy. I would get everything in the romance section and surprise, surprise, I either haven't read some of them, or deleted them. So it got me thinking - what influences me?

Here's what I noticed about my self:

Top influencer -  The Cover

This is the very first thing I look at. I am a complete cover whore. Plain and simple. I am almost positive I'm missing out on some phenomenal reading simply because the cover doesn't pull me. I will skim lists and my eyes gloss over the books that don't attract. Does that make me fickle? No. It means I like what I like. I'm the same whether I go to a bookstore or shop online. The cover has to appeal. It has to catch my eye. The same amount of time that went into the story and perfecting needs to go into having the best cover. I've bought books JUST for the cover. Sometimes they are just as convincing as the blurb and if both are amazing, there's no stopping the purchase.

Second Influencer - The Blurb

I always look at the blurb. If I'm intrigued by anything by the book, I'll read it. If I love the cover, I go straight to the blurb. I love those that give me just enough to get excited, but doesn't give everything away. I read somewhere readers look for keywords when they're trying to decide based on the description, and I realized I do the same. Don't get me wrong, I read the whole thing, but my mind does look for what it knows I'll like. When the blurb is long, my mind looks and will continue reading if it sees "Oh ... Scotland .... Laird ..... Warrior .... Feisty ... Clan." (just example) The only time the blurb doesn't sell me is if it's so vague, I still don't have a clue after reading it a few times. Paired with the book's cover, the blurb is a strong selling point. It has to give a glimpse of the amazing story inside.

Third Influencer - The Author

I know I'm not alone with this - we have our favorite authors. There are those books where it doesn't matter if everything else sucks, I'm buying it because I love the author. It's a fun feeling when you're shopping and realize there's new work out you didn't know. You're looking at everything and then BAM ... you see who wrote it and it's an instant click. With me blogging, promoting, and being a social media junkie, I see a lot of names and I'm a firm believe in name recognition. I may not have bought "Author One's" book last week, but hey here it is again, the time is right so why not ... click to buy.

Fourth Influencer - The Title

Sometimes the title pulls me in, even if I'm not diggin' the cover. I need to be able to pronounce it so I can tell everyone, it needs to intrigue me, and it needs to make sense. I've read some titles and thought I knew the genre, only to find out I was nowhere close. I've also wanted to learn more about the book because of how it sounds. It's not a deal breaker for me, though. Not like the cover.

Last Influencer - The Rating

I want to say I'm not swayed, but I am just a little. It doesn't prevent me from purchasing a book though. I'm also not one who if the cover and blurb don't do it for me, say "Well it's a 4 star book, I should read it." I do look at it when I'm taking in all the information, and if I see it's pretty low, I'll check out the reviews. I don't always hit this stage, though because I'm influenced more by the above. 

So there you have it. That's how I decide when I'm looking through hundreds of books a week. It was interesting discovering exactly what held the strongest influence for me, and now I ask you same the question ...

How do YOU decide which book to buy?

Feel free to comment below!