Wednesday, March 21, 2018

To Discover a Divine by Tessa McFionn


So, we all have secrets, right? Now, I’m not talking about the deep, dark, “skeletons in the closet” type of secrets. I’m talking about those kinda generic, embarrassing moments back in high school or college, or maybe even yesterday at the supermarket, that you’d rather forget about. Let’s say we dredge up some dirt on yours truly!

All right. First, huge disclaimer; I’m boring.

Honest! I wish I could say I’ve spent years traveling the globe and hanging out with posh celebrities. But, sadly, I’m not that person. I work as a teacher and shoehorn in writing at every available opportunity. I have a husband who gratefully understands my weirdness. I have no kids, nor have I ever had the desire to have them. (See above statement about being a teacher.)

No, I’m not going to cheat and say the boring disclaimer was one of my five secrets. OK, here goes.

Secret number one: I am a huge nerd.

Most of my readers know of my obsession with everything Disney, but my nerdiness goes far beyond that. I have a rather extensive comic book collection, complete with signed comics and graphic novels. I played Dungeons & Dragons from the moment it hit the gaming shelves way back in junior high school and continued to game until just recently (Yes, I still have my character sheets and I think I know where my dice bag is). This also means I was stuffed into lockers and occasionally dumped in trash cans, but I didn’t mind. I took calculus and physics just for fun in my senior year. I have action figures from very random movies, and I do mean random. I have Kurt Russell and Kim Cattrall’s characters from Big Trouble in Little China, the cast of Firefly, and of course, Doctor Who. And I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the fact I have been attending San Diego Comic-Con for almost twenty-seven years, with about twenty-three of them spent as a staff volunteer. Like I said, seriously huge nerd.

Secret number two: I’ve performed Off-Broadway.

Surprise! Remember when I said I teach, well, I didn’t mention that I teach dance. I started dancing when I was about three and after a slight break in high school, I picked it back up again in college. Before going to college, I focused on tap and jazz, and then ballet and modern once I got to college. I returned to my first love, tap, after discovering Irish step dancing. Yeah, I know. That’s a lot of dance, so when I add it to the pile, my repertoire consists of tap, jazz, ballet, modern, hip-hop and Irish step dancing. All right, back to the show. Set the Wayback Clock to 2002. I was much younger and ready to try something new. So, I took a summer break, went to NYC, and worked with a great group of tappers on a show called “Break the Floor.” It was part of my fifteen minutes of fame and I just loved it. Yet, the most amazing thing I learned was I was no longer driven to perform. Strange, I know. Standing in the wings of the American Plaza Theater, preparing to take the stage, and I didn’t have the butterflies I was expecting. Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t trade that moment for the world, but it did let me know that my passion truly lay in watching my students perform.

Secret number three: I’m an extrovert.

Ok, so maybe that’s more of a declarative statement, but some people might not expect it, nonetheless. I think it’s because most people believe authors to be the introverted, shy, bookish types who connect better with pages than with people. Yeah, no. Not so much for me. And I’ve always been outgoing. Being the youngest of three, I had to be creative to get in trouble. So, you can be assured, trouble was found and very often when I was a kid. I remember going to McDonald’s with my brother and I had to talk to the people behind the counter for him. I really like talking to people. I enjoy hearing other people’s stories and I also like to see people smile. Laughter is the song of the day in my house at all times, and I share positivity as often as I can. Does this seem odd for someone whose entire wardrobe consists of black, light black, and darker black? Details.

See? I told you I’m boring.

Secret number four: I’m nearly impossible to embarrass.

This one is pretty entertaining. I am more apt to embarrass myself, but at the end of the day, embarrassment happens when you’re uncomfortable. And, if you just finished reading the above secret, you know that I’m very outgoing and I thrive in crowds. Have I done embarrassing things? At least once a day, but I laugh them off. I will share one entertaining event. Now, the Wayback Clock is getting set to late 1997. I had recently met the man I now call my husband and we were hanging out with friends at a coffee shop. It actually was the coffee shop where we first met (he was a barista at the time and I was a first-time patron), so it was a rather relaxed setting. One of my hubby’s very good friends is from the Netherlands, so a bunch of their crew knew a smattering of Dutch (I’m thinking you might see where this is going). It’s still the beginning stages of the relationship, and we all remember those days, and nights. So, at the coffee shop, I’m sitting with my hubby and friends and we’re making goo-goo eyes at each other. One of his friends uses the phrase, “hoeken in de keuken.” Unaware, I smiled, and my hubby proudly said, “Yup.” Wide eyes turned toward me as one of our friends exclaims, “You had sex in his kitchen?”

One of the few times I’ve actually turned red. I could feel the heat on my cheeks, plus the peals of raucous laughter were another obvious sign.

Secret number five: I am terrified that I’m doing everything wrong.

Yeah, surprise. After all the posturing of my earlier statements, I am quite the fraidy-cat. It's a little of the "imposter complex" that most artists deal with on a daily basis, but a large part of it is due to something else. I have ADHD. I'm not really including this as one of my big secrets. If you've ever met me, it's pretty easy to figure that one out. I HAVE to be going in fourteen different directions all at the same time. If not, I am truly a basket case. I'm adept at multitasking, and most of the time, I can keep all the balls up with a decent degree of success. But, at the heart of the matter, I generally spend half of my time concerned that I'm forgetting something that I should be doing, and worrying that what I am doing isn't right, or enough, or any number of qualifiers simultaneously. Some days are easy; others, I want to curl up in a catatonic ball of frazzled nerves and blubbering tears. But I don't.

So, why not? This is where things get even weirder. I'm a dreamer, yet a realist at the same time. Like all authors, I have a little voice in the back of my head. It's more than just my muse. It refuses to let me give up, or break down, even when things are bleak. I attribute the voice to both my parents. They always believed in me, even when I didn't. And even though they have passed beyond, I can still hear them, whispering loving words of encouragement and support. So, I persevere. I have my momentary freak-outs, but they generally last only a second or two. Then, I'm back to my crazy, positive, Goth self.

Well, there you have it. Five randomly boring insights in the dark little space I call my mind. But, to be honest, I do like my life, warts and all.

When Kahlym cal Jhuen, freedom-fighting leader of the Chandar Stria, breaks into a prison ship controlled by the Rimmarian Thrall, he only expected to rescue two of his crew. But when he discovers a terrified female during his escape, he is immediately captivated by her unique beauty and makes a snap decision to take her with him. However, his good deed backfires when he learns he has stolen the Thrall Emperor’s prize.

Down to her last dollar, Evainne Wagner expected nothing out of the ordinary when she stepped out of her Boston apartment. Instead, she found herself in the middle of an intergalactic firefight, complete with strange soldiers with deadly weapons pointed directly at her. Salvation arrives in the nick of time in the form of a mysterious leather-clad warrior, skidding in and whisking her away. Trusting her heart, she follows, hoping to find answers as well as a way home.

Safely on board his ship, he learns more about her and her rare skills, triggering the memory of a half-forgotten prophecy spoken at the time of his cursed birth. Outcast because of a cruel twist of fate, he finds unexpected acceptance, even affection, from his new passenger.

Could she be the one who holds the future of his people, as well as his own heart, in her tender hands?

About the Author:
Tessa McFionn is a very native Californian and has called Southern California home for most of her life, growing up in San Diego and attending college in Northern California and Orange County, only to return to San Diego to work as a teacher. Insatiably curious and imaginative, she loves to learn and discover, making her wicked knowledge of trivial facts an unwelcomed guest at many Trivial Pursuit boards.

When not writing, she can be found at the movies or at Disneyland with her husband, as well as family, friends or anyone who wants to play at the Happiest Place on Earth. She also finds her artistic soul fed through her passions for theatre, dance and music.

A proud parent of far too many high school seniors and two still living house plants, she also enjoys hockey, reading and playing Words With Friends to keep her vocabulary sharp. She is currently the treasurer of the San Diego chapter of Romance Writers of America and loves spending time working with such amazingly intelligent and creative writers.

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