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Saturday, September 8, 2012

Blog Site Moving

Hi everyone, I have a new web site and it includes my blog. All the content from this blogspot has been moved and my blogs will now be on http://www.arleenalleman.com.

A free ebook is offered on the new site as well, and a schedule for book signings.

I'm working on the fourth Darcy Farthing adventure novel and I'm not sure how far this series is going to take me. Readers will remember Don and Charlie, who became heroes in the first book, Currents Deep and Deadly. They and their daughter, Penelope, will be featured in the new book. The three live in Seattle, and are happy, despite a few local gay rights issues. However, suddenly their lives are turned completely upside down by elusive kidnappers who might be related to one of several groups. Darcy and Mick are determined to help the little family at considerable risk to themselves.

I'll give a lot more teasers as I work on it.

I'm hoping everyone stays safe and healthy. Our society seems to be getting more and more violent to where life might actually be imitating art. We went to the movies yesterday and saw six previews of coming films. Every one of them was nonstop murder and mayhem--unbelievable violence. It sickened us. The movie we saw, Expendables 2, was particularly violent from beginning to end and we wished we had skipped it.

The thing that disturbed us most was a family of four with a seven year old boy and four year old girl actually sitting through the whole thing. What were those parents thinking? What is happening to our culture? Am I just overreacting?

 Here's another random travel photo. Peaceful sleeping Koala at Steve Erwin's zoo near Sydney. They sleep most of the time due to their low protein diet of eucalyptus leaves. So soft and cuddly and we got to pet them.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Should We Eat the Chicken or the Egg?

My healthy 90 year old mom.

It seems like every week or so there is a new study on another thing that is  harmful to our health or well being. Unfortunately, many times the culprit is something in our diet or environment that we are attached to, or have always considered safe. The new study on the danger of eating egg yolks is certainly one of these. 
The headline is shocking, since the new study compares eating egg yolks with smoking cigarettes. What??  Of course, it is not news that egg yolk is high in cholesterol. To quote a section of an article by Melissa Healy at the Los Angeles Times: 
"The study subjects were typically referred to the clinic after having suffered a clot-induced stroke or a transient ischemic attack -- a "mini-stroke" in which symptoms may disappear quickly but which often presage a more serious stroke to come."
"Smoking tobacco and eating egg yolks increased carotid wall thickness in similar fashion -- which is to say, the rate of increase accelerated with each stair-step up in cigarette smoking or yolk consumption. By contrast, for those who did not smoke, or who rarely consumed egg yolks, carotid wall thickness increased after 40, but at a slow-steady rate. " 
Now, hopefully the study printed in the journal Atherosclerosis, was conducted according to standard research methods, meaning that subjects were screened for factors that could confound the results. That is, if the subjects had already experienced cardiovascular incidents, as indicated, what factors in their lifestyle besides eating egg yolk might have contributed?
In my opinion, it is even more important to ask whether any information is known about the subjects' genetic predisposition to heart disease. To use a personal example, which is in no way unique, my 90 year old mother has all her life, eaten a diet high in cholesterol. Her main staples are eggs, bacon, and red meat.  Her doctor says she is one of his healthiest patients over the age of 60. That is because she has low LDL cholesterol and no signs of diabetes or heart disease.  She has never exercised outside her normal daily activity. 
On the other hand, I had breast cancer and have no discernible risk factors. I have always exercised, eaten a healthy diet, and do not smoke. I suspect this is a genetic tendency similar to my mother's tendency to avoid heart disease no matter what she eats.
So, what should we make of this latest study? The protein in eggs is healthy; it is the fat that is the problem.  One issue here is that there are eggs and egg products in a myriad of baked goods and other processed foods and those must be factored into the assessment of how much egg yolk we actually eat. 
Like my mom, I am fortunate to have naturally very low LDL and high HDL (good cholesterol). However, given a choice between the chicken and the egg, I will choose to eat chicken. I will not cut the occasional omelet out of my diet, but I will probably further reduce the number of eggs--yolk, since the white does not contain cholesterol--I eat over all.
The bottom line is as we have said many times, we should make dietary decisions based on knowledge of our cholesterol and blood sugar numbers, as well as well established guidelines on the amount of sugar and animal fat we should consume, which is very little.  Here is the link to the article. http://www.latimes.com/health/boostershots/la-heb-egg-cholesterol-smoking-20120814,0,1391259.story

Friday, August 10, 2012

Marketing Current Assets

This is our favorite bartender on Mariner of the Seas holding the first book poster. We had a great time with book signings on the ship.

As I work on marketing the new book, Current Assets, I'm adding a profile on a great author resource website, "Ask David" This is free book promotion and exposure. Check it out at  http://askdavid.com or http://askdavid.com/free-book-promotion .  I've mentioned this before, but if you want to see one of my book's pages on his site, look at http://tinyurl.com/73k5szt.

I'm waiting for barnesandnoble.com to put the nook version up on their site. Meanwhile, the kindle version is already on amazon.com. I'm so gratified to see the spike in sales with the release of Current Assets, and especially the book sales in the DC area, which are probably related to The GAO Management News article that went out to all their staff.

As all self published authors know, it is slow going at first to get recognition and readers. Word of mouth is so important along with reviews posted on the booksellers websites, and blurbs on social media. As I contemplate plot and character development for the fourth novel, yet to be written, I'm hopeful that the marketing efforts are beginning to pay off.

For Darcy readers--Don and Charlie and their daughter Penelope will be featured in the next installment. They became heroes in the first book and may be victims in the fourth. Darcy Farthing is not a household name, yet, but stranger things have happened, particularly in the Darcy series, where her books have become famous.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Third Darcy Adventure on Amazon & B&N

I see that amazon.com at http://tinyurl.com/c54h4u9 and BarnesandNoble.com at http://tinyurl.com/c7ze451 now have Current Assets available. It is only $3.99 on kindle. I hope you'll check it out, especially if you are not yet familiar with Darcy's adventures. Each of the three books stands alone, so you don't have to start at the beginning, unless you want to get the whole picture, of course. I'm really grateful for the kind words and support from readers. Happy reading!

In this latest story, Darcy and Mick find themselves in trouble again, this time in South Florida where Darcy and her beloved yellow Mustang have moved to be with Mick and continue her writing career. Her biological daughter, Rachael, turns up unexpectedly from Kenya with big problems at the same time that friend, Tom Smythe, is arrested for shooting a sheriff's deputy. Soon the quirky cast of characters is propelled into a mind-blowing complicated murder and theft plot involving local government corruption, smuggling, and Middle East terrorists. Mick and his team are drawn into the drama as they try to conduct a routine audit of the sheriff's office and U.S. marshal's asset forfeiture program, which quickly becomes anything but routine. Darcy and Rachael manage to draw violent attention to them selves and Darcy and Mick find additional adventure and danger on a private luxury cruise yacht.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Shiny New Website

We launched my new Website last night. http://www.arleenalleman.com I'm thrilled with it and will be adding new information and this blog is linked to it. Thanks to Michael Butler at M3 New Media for all your hard work on the site. Let me know what you think.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Current Assets is Available

Like a birthing process, Current Assets, the third Darcy Farthing adventure, is working its way along the book sellers' channels. It is now available on my publisher's Website at http://tinyurl.com/89e62dk and will soon appear on amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com along with the previous books.  http://tinyurl.com/3fqqg7e.

The ebook will be available soon, but you can order an advance FREE promotional ebook of Current Assets from me during the next few days by providing me your email address. Contact me through http://www.arleenalleman.com

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Darcy: How Does She Think?



Darcy's quotes from the three adventure novels give some insight into her thinking and philosophy.

Darcy Quotes

"Life throws a lot of curves, near misses, and too often direct hits. I believe I've had more than my share of the latter. Usually it takes only a minute for me to reject such a self-pitying notion. Still, it would be hard to imagine how more change--accompanied by trauma--could come about in such a relatively short time. Mystery and violence have been part of my reality for the past two and a half years. It used to seem like a fluke, but now I'm beginning to wonder if it's become a way of life.''
 —Current Assets (coming soon) 

"If you think about it, trillions of events are happening in the world at the same time every moment of every day, and some are directly related while most have absolutely no connection in space or time. But somewhere along the continuum of events there have to be overlapping occurrences that will have meaning for at least one of us, but only if we are in the right place at the right time to recognize them."
--Currents Deep and Deadly

"You can truly believe you have a handle on how your little slice of life fits into the whole pie, but just when you think pepperoni is all you'll ever need, someone dumps a bunch of mushrooms and peppers on top, and suddenly a mind-blowing revelation smacks you in the mouth. My name is Darcy Farthing, and this is my slice-of-life-with-everything-on-it story.'
--Currents Deep and Deadly

 "I would rather be at the mercy of chaos, where at least I have a chance of bringing order to my life, than to be manipulated by something for its own unknown purpose. I'm afraid that based on the reality of the world, I don't see a reason to assume its purpose would be benevolent."
--Currents of Vengeance

"To keep your sanity when it seems everything in your life has gone over-the-top crazy, you can step back from the action and try to gain an astronaut’s perspective of the world.  But when you find yourself getting lost in the tranquility of that detached view it’s time to dive into a current and get back in the flow."
 —Currents of Vengeance