Yay! A new Suamalie Islands book is now available! Congratulations to author Melissa Wardwell! To celebrate its release, the Suamalie authors are doing a series of blog posts along with a giveaway. Melissa got to pose the question, and this is what she said:
In an Unexpected Gift, Kiana is a closet video gamer on the internet. It is how she decompresses at the end of a long day. What is something you do to relax or decompress after a long day? Bonus points if it is completely uncharacteristic of you!
Before I respond to this question, I need to ask for the definition of two terms—relax and decompress. By contrast, I fully understand the phrase “long day.” I started my morning today at 6:00 am. I ran about 3 miles on my treadmill, and I haven’t stopped running since. There’s been so much to do, and so much still needing doing. It’s now almost midnight, and I’m writing this blog post, which doesn’t feel like it should count as relaxing or decompressing either!
The sad reality is that I don’t relax and decompress right now. It’s a problem. But I don’t have time in my schedule. I recently started a new part-time job, and I’m trying to manage that with my author work, with being a very-involved mom to four busy children. I honestly feel like time must go slower for others than it does for me. I don’t know how some of my amazing author friends manage to get everything done. I’m thoroughly convinced they must have a magical device that slows time down so they can accomplish more. I think my magical device puts time on fast forward!
I go to bed each night with a long list of what I should have accomplished today. I get up in the morning and put out fires all day. Then I end the day again only adding more to my list. I hope that life will eventually settle down. I’d love to get a few minutes to relax and do something simply because I enjoy it and not because I’m trying to get something done for someone else.
In the meantime, let’s play the “if game.” If I had time to relax and decompress, what would I do? Growing up, my relaxation was reading. Oh, how I loved reading! I still do! But since I started writing my own books, it’s more difficult for me to turn off my brain when reading. While I still love to read, now it takes a lot of effort for me to settle down and relax into it. So my first choice for my elusive fantasy moments of relaxation would not be reading.
Here’s my confession: I actually know exactly what I’d do if I had time at the end of a long day. I would watch a low-budget princess movie on TV.
On a rare evening after the kids are in bed, my husband may flip on the TV in our bedroom. Then he may start scrolling through all the shows on Amazon. We even have a subscription to one of the channels that shows a lot of Hallmark movies—a subscription I haven’t looked at in months. He’ll ask me what I want to watch. I’ll idly watch the screen flipping through pictures and movie titles, not really caring what we should watch. Then I’ll spy a movie about royalty. The Princess Something or The Royal Whatever.
“That one. Let’s do that one,” I’ll say.
Unfortunately, there are a decentnumber of cringe-worthy royalty movies. We may wince through the cheesy plot and trite dialogue. The movie may not include an actual plot at all. There may be a few smiles and a tad bit of sweet romance. But there’s nothing at all similar to what I experience every day and very little resemblance to anything I write. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that princess movies are bad. Quite the opposite. I like them. A lot. So much so that it really doesn’t matter if they are good or bad.
For an hour and a half, I don’t have to think. I don’t need to live in reality. For the space of just a bit, it provides a meaningless escape from everything. And somehow, it’s exactly what I need.
So if I had time to relax and decompress, I would watch the cheesiest princess movie I could find and enjoy every minute. Even better, my sweet husband would watch it with me (with very minimal teasing about my cinematic taste).
However, instead of indulging in relaxing, my usual nightly activities involve fighting sleep as I stay up late, trying to make headway on my to-do list. Those activities invariably involve writing—as they did tonight. In the exercise of creating words that look back at me from a screen, I find a bit of release. I feel a sense of accomplishment as I see the neatly organized rows of words. There’s an emotional release in the feeling that I’ve transferred some of my tumultuous thoughts onto an organized page, and I can leave them there.
For now, that little taste of relaxation and decompression gained through writing is just enough for me to finally shut my computer, go to sleep, and wake up to brave it all again tomorrow when my alarm clock strikes 6:00am.
An Unexpected Gift by Melissa Wardwell
Something’s up in Suamalie, and it’s looking like love!
When Kiana, Lulu, and Meilani decide it’s time for the islands to
have affordable wedding options, Something Suamalie becomes the
marriage of skills, friendship, and wedding splendor on the islands.
Cruising around the island on a Moped in a business suit may seem
incongruous, but Kiana knows how to blend practicality and
professionalism, a strong work ethic and relaxation. With no time for
mistakes or changes in plans, she’s also decided to forgo romance
(for herself). There just isn’t enough time in the day. That is until the
early arrival of one of the groomsmen of Something Suamalie’s first
booking throws everything off balance, including her thoughts on
long distance dating.
Beau was perfectly content with his job and the growing attraction to
a girl back home; however, he hadn’t figured in the sassy and
sometimes unprofessional wedding planner. Seeing her world begin
to unravel while she and her partners fumble with their first weddings
tugs at his heart strings and leaves him second guessing his choices in
the romance department.
She’s a study in opposites. He’s attracted. So now what do they do?
Take a trip to the Suamalie Islands where palm trees sway, the sand and sea pulse with life, and the
people will steal your heart.
Check out some of the other stories of fun getaway experiences by the other Suamalie Islands authors!