Tuesday, January 31, 2012

If You Love Melynda READ THIS

    Here's the deal, Melynda from Crazy World NEEDS our help. If you don't know what I'm talking about, please go here:

    She's gone legally blind in BOTH eyes. I visited her recently and it broke my heart. She doesn't have ANY of the supplies she needs (such as a talking blood sugar monitor for her diabetes, or computer programs to read her emails, texts etc. aloud).
    A few weeks ago, Melynda lost her house. Then, Meaghan (her daughter) almost died from a cyst that attached itself to an artery and leaked! Now this. Melynda is obviously sad about losing her driver's license and independence. She WILL conquer this, though; she's a survivor.
    Her strength and resolve astound me. I'll never forget when someone tried breaking into my house. Melynda stayed up all night guarding my house from across the street (because Cade was gone).     
    She couldn't see, but said she'd still 'watch' AND listen. I laughed thinking she was joking, but come to find out, she was serious. That woman stayed in her driveway ready to fight Lucifer if she had to. 
    I went outside at one point. Melynda couldn't see me even in the lights from my porch. I looked over, so proud to call her my friend. She wore shorts, a babydoll top and a sassy hat. It was COLD outside, but nothing will get that woman down--and even the cold elements don't bother HER--because she's better than Xena, really.     
    She smoked into the wind, looking serious the whole time. I kept thinking how amazing she is. She couldn't see my house, but by golly she'd rather die than go to sleep and feel like she wasn't guarding it for me somehow.
    I asked her about it later. "Why did you stay up? I know you couldn't see."
    "So what if I couldn't see them! THEY could see me. I can't imagine someone trying to break in, when someone else seems to be sitting there watching."
    That's just Mel, classy and brilliant all the time.
   Any time I was sick, she'd make me food. I swear I'd sneeze and she'd make me a lasagna. Sneezing led to a good time! I learned to LOVE getting sick just so I could get yummy food.
    The point is, she's really been there for me--and she's epic--but right now it's my turn to be there for her!
    A few days ago I helped her apply for disability (she couldn't see the form let alone drive to the place). We're talking with a rep on the phone again today and filling out more forms.  It might be months until she qualifies, but she's trying to do everything she needs to.          
    She's already battling depression. She needs a purpose, some love, some support. Melynda will be fine. The woman who guards houses--even blind--that's my buddy. Anyone like that WILL beat this, but she still doesn't have what she needs. Having the proper tools would help so much.

    I've thought long and hard about this. Here's my idea:
    How great would it be if Melynda could EARN some money to be able to afford what she needs?! Her own hard work--her own TALENT, paving a way for her to succeed even through this! Many people have left her comments asking if she'd turn her blog posts into a book. Months ago I read those comments and begged Melynda on your behalf. "Please let me publish some of the stories from your blog. I could split them into the four seasons and then your readers can have four fun novellas to read anywhere!"
    "I don't know, E."
    "Listen," I said. "People LOVE your writing. This is a good idea."
    She paused.  "Having a book published is a big dream of mine. But do you think it's good enough?"
    I'd sneezed that day--so she'd made me lasagna. I shoveled some food into my mouth, then swallowed and licked my lips. I set my fork down hard. "Listen, woman. I wouldn't offer to publish just anyone, seriously. My reputation is on the line, too. Writing is my lively-hood now. I believe in you. This should prove how much. I would publish your work in a heartbeat. We need to edit it and do some fine tuning, but that's how it goes with anyone. You want your readers to have a quality product they can enjoy. Then after publishing those, you need to make a cookbook with this recipe for lasagna included! Are you up for it?"
    "Novellas, huh?"
    "Yeah, because they're convenient not only at home, but in the office, at doctors' offices and in personal bathrooms."
    She laughed. "Nice."  Then, she finally agreed. We put one book together. Fishducky edited it months ago. I created a cover and formatted it. Here's what we came up with:


    We sent it back to Melynda, but her eyesight went downhill fast after that and she never got to really "SEE" her book.

   Here's the deal, Melynda's book is now in the review process! I plan on working my butt off to get this project done by March 1st! 100% of the profit will go to help Melynda.
   If you'd like to add this to your to-read list, please go here:


    Anyways, I wrote this today because Melynda still can't access our blogs and I know she can't read this. 
    I'm trying to be sneaky and surprise the woman.  Ka-pow!
    She needs something positive to happen in her life. She's lost her house, her sight; her fifteen-year-old son moved to Italy; now, she almost lost her daughter! The woman NEEDS a break.

    She'll be thrilled to have a published book, and know others are enjoying it! Plus, I'D be thrilled knowing she can make money to afford what she needs.

    Do you have any additional thoughts or ideas? I know you love her as much as I do. Melynda and I each started blogs and we gained an extended family in the process.

    In closing, I just have a few fun things to share.  

    I've decided to blog Monday-Thursday because I'm a blogaholic.
    Melynda originally started a blog for the famous Fishducky, but now all three of us came up with a plan.  Fishducky will be featured every week on my blog instead so Melynda won't have any added stress.  
    I remember thinking if I could just get Fishducky to comment on my blog, then I'd be golden.  Now she's writing on it every Friday--Fishducky Friday--and I've made the big time now!  So, get ready--it's gonna be great.

    Also, I was having such a hard day yesterday since it was the day Zeke died.  Late last night I read each of your comments and they made everything so much brighter.  What a blessing to me!  Then, to top all of those sweet things off, Rick Gualtieri wrote the kindest--MOST HILARIOUS--review of "The Golden Sky," my tribute to Zeke.  You really need to check this out if you have time.  It was the icing on the cake of your kindness--seriously:

Review: The Golden Sky

    And the last news I'd like to share, is how I'm featured on Splitter's blog today for asking the question:

    Why do men only remember the last 30 seconds of what a woman says? Why isn't it 15 seconds or 60? What's so magical about 30?

    He's epic, enough said.  Go see for yourself.

Ask Tom Tuesday: Are You Listening to Me?



  1. Wow that was a ton of things going on. I knew you couldn't stay away from the blogverse with only three days a week..haha. Sounds like a wonderful idea to help her out too, all the crap just seems to be piling on, will be nice when something good happens for a change.

  2. Thank you for the kind mention, Elisa! I greatly appreciate it. I'm so sorry to hear about your friend and would love to help however I can.

    For starters, you should check out afb.org and screenreader.net . They both list screen readers, at least one of which is free. (disclaimer, I haven't used them).

    Next, please keep us posted as to the book coming out. I don't check Goodreads often enough but will definitely keep an eye out on amazon.

    Thirdly I'd love to help advertise this. Make a list of your twitter friends. Send us links and blurbs. I know I'd be happy to keep tweeting them out.

    Additionally, if you can think of any other help, let me know. Most of us in my house have bad eyes, so this is always a fear, and not one I'd wish on anyone.

  3. I'm ready to help any way I can as well. I haven't checked out goodreads yet, but I will. You are such a good friend to Melynda...and all of us. Thank you.

  4. I'm a loyal follower of Melynda's. Reading her blog was one of the highlights of my day. If there is ANYTHING I can do to help, please let me know. If you don't have my e-mail, let me know and I'll send it to you. I can't believe how much has happened to her in such a short time. Hopefully the good times aren't too far off. She's strong and will get through it.

    I love your idea of the Novellas.

    And your story about her standing guard on your stoop had me smiling and tearing at the same time!

  5. Sorry, I only caught the last 30% of this blog. I don't know how Goodreads works but I will damn well find out.

  6. Fantastic idea for a fantastic woman from a fantastic friend....LOL, no more coffee for me. What ever she needs I will do my best to help and buying this novella of hers would be a treat for me. It is on my list of books to read and I can't wait for it to come out and be snuggled safely inside my kindle next to yours!

  7. good idea bout getting her book published. looking into goodreads now...

  8. you are such an amazing friend, Elisa :) and I think this is a wonderful idea. :)

  9. You are a wonderful warm heart caring person... You will be making such a difference in the world! Brilliant idea!! xo HHL

  10. I went to Goodreads, read Rick's review (which I loved) & left one of my own. It says:

    I helped edit this book, so I have already read it--BUT I STILL WANT A COPY!! What a treat it was to read a well written, hilarious book of things that could have only happened to Melynda!!

    It was so typical of her to be a nonseeing night watchman for your house. I feel privileged to count you & Melynda among my very best--but never met in person--friends!

  11. Dear Elisa,
    You are both such sweethearts. My mom would say, "real honeys." You each go above and beyond to help one another and so you have become blessings in one another's lives.

    I went to Goodreads and tried to buy the book--in advance--from Amazon but they didn't show it. However, as soon as it's published I'll purchase the book and also the other three novellas you're planning.

    I read the review--quite wonderful, congratulations--and the answer to your question--quite witty!

    Now, you and I need to talk about what I might do to help out with this process. I note that Rick G. has offered some wonderful help.

    Some wise person once said that "life is in the details." You and Melynda are proving that true.


  12. I think that is such a wonderful, wonderful idea. Please keep us posted as to when it's available for purchase.

    What a super review on your book!! And I chuckled through the 30 second rule.

    Melynda has been in my thoughts a lot lately. Now I have this picture of her sitting in her dark driveway...and it makes me smile. :)

  13. If I can do anything re: Melynda's book, please let me know. Peace.

  14. Thank goodness Melynda is finally getting published! You are such an angel! It could be handy, with her not being able to see and all, to maybe set up a PayPal donate button on her blog. She would kill you if she ever found out but hey, she'd never know and it could get her some extra bucks!
    I completely burst out laughing at her response to you over looking over your house while she couldn't see anything! What a brain on that woman! LOL

  15. Oh my goodness! This girl does not deserve everything that has been dealt out to her. You can count me in.

    Eileen Hogan

  16. You are golden Elisa! What you and Fishducky are doing for Melynda is sooo special. I am privileged to have met you here. Now, I know it will be hard, but the reduced blogging schedule will be great for your writing career and family. Step into it with pride. You'll be able to write more books now. YAY!

  17. The only other thing I can think of that might help a bit is if you want to try herbalife, even if you just want vitamins or just want the protein shake mix, buy it from Melynda. She's given me all sorts of good advice on weight loss. I swear, I don't know how that woman is still standing. I'd cry in my bed all day. But that's me, not Melynda.


  18. Hello:

    I will post this blog entry on Google + for you and best wishes.

    Kind regards,

  19. Amazing and an inspiration--you all are.

  20. That's a wonderful idea to help your friend write a book. I agree that doing something for herself will help. I think once you have the equipment, it's still very possible to write. Web sites and programs are supposed to have accessibility features built in now, but I wonder how much that's actually true. I had to use a wheelchair to venture out for several months - it turns out it's not as easy as it seems. I'd love to read her story of adapting to life if she wants to read it (please pass it on).

  21. ...I meant help her PUBLISH it...i need more coffee.

  22. Elisa,
    Tell Melynda to go to
    It's a free screen-reading program, so she can listen to all the blogs and EMails she has. They're read using text-to speech. There should be a tutorial for using System Access somewhere, maybe in a "help" section on the page. If she can't afford to purchase a screen reader, she can always go to that website, and a screen reading program will automatically start up on her computer. I've used both, pay programs and that free one, and the free one is just as good as anything you'd pay for.

  23. What a wonderful friend in need you are in Melynda's time of need! I will definitely buy her book and the others when they are ready. I missed a few of your posts and hers, so I had no idea Meaghan had such a serious brush with death! I am so pleased to know she survived to tell the tale. My heart goes out to Melynda with everything that has been happening in her life. She is a truly remarkable woman! Please give her my love and a big hug from me when you see her.

  24. I liked the link on FB and added to my GR shelf :)

  25. Anything, anything at all to help Melynda. Diabetes is evil.

  26. Wow! I didn't know much of the story, but I love Melynda's writing and I'll purchase her book. What a great friend you are! I read the review and the hysterical response to your question. I had to leave a comment.

    Thanks for your big, generous heart and allowing us to help in whatever ways we are able.

  27. I'm glad I dropped by today. I'd love to read the book and I'm going over to the site now.

  28. You and fishducky are wonderful friends, and Melynda is an amazing person. She has been through a lot. I'm going to check out her book.

  29. I don't know Melynda, but I will definitely buy the book. I'll put it on my to-read list. She sounds like a wonderful person. I pray God will help her through this.