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“Love Cats” Picked Up By Traditional Publishing Company For Second Printing

Published October 25, 2019 by Maryanne

Love Cats front and back cover

First Printing of Love Cats, 2015

Anyone who has been following my blog for some time, knows that back in 2015 I self-published my second book “Love Cats.” I had a great run with it, until Next Century Publishing folded not too long ago and “Love Cats” became out of print.

Strangely, I had someone from San Francisco (I live in New Jersey) call my home asking where he could get a copy. That call made me aware that “Love Cats” was no longer available. I didn’t even know Next Century Publishing went out of business!

After I published “Love Cats” I tried my luck at getting traditional publishers for my next three books. And sure enough, my next three books were picked up by traditional publishers! My latest I got my first advance ever! So, I figured, why not try my luck with “Love Cats.” I sent it out to only nine publishers and Pink Flamingo Media (https://www.pinkflamingo.com/) decided to go with it!

I was THRILLED! Of all the books I wrote, and had published, “Love Cats” was my baby. Most of my adult life I worked as a journalist, telling the truth, creating a work of fiction was a challenge. “Love Cats” originally came to me in a dream. It was partly inspired by the short-lived CBS series “Swingtown.” And partly inspired by the “me, me, me” world we are living in, which I never realized the extent until I saw first hand on Facebook how many people were takers. I thought to myself, If people are so selfish on the internet — and in real life (because everyone knows a few ego-maniacs) — I can only imagine how terribly selfish they’d be in bed! Hell, I even wrote an article about selfishness in bed for gasm: http://gasm.org/article/and-now-back-to-me/

Thinking about selfish people, I created the character Janey. I took selfishness to the extreme and made a story out of it. I also wanted to create a male character who didn’t feel that “every man’s dream” was to have a threesome, because it’s not. Though they may be rare, there are some incredibly loyal men out there. (What’s the saying? If you want to be a happy couple, hang out with four happy couples and you will be the fifth!) Beck was loyal, though not a pushover. Nevertheless, Janey’s selfish bedside manner could make almost anyone cringe.

As a happily married woman, I had to think back to my times of being single and not so happy. I took my mind back to the 1980s; and with the woes of single-hood, there was an amazing soundtrack — the dark wave and new wave era. If you love Bauhaus, Iggy Pop, Kate Bush, The Smiths, and The Cure, this book is for you!

Now where do cats come in? Beck is a dedicated cat lover. Janey hates cats. But what happens when Janey’s selfish ways backfire and her life is at an all-time low when a kitten shows up on her doorstep?

You’ll have to wait until 2020 to read the ending, if you don’t already have a copy of the first edition of “Love Cats.”

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for blogging, ghost writing, writing. She is also available for book signings and motivational speaking engagements. She is the author of the following books :

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: 10 Ways to Become Your Own Hero” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback or Kindle version, visit: https://www.amazon.com/Be-Extra-Ordinary-Ways-Become/dp/1733546227

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261

“The Gypsy Smiled” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback or Kindle version, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Gypsy-Smiled-Maryanne-Christiano-Mistretta-ebook/dp/B074VC7MT9

 

 

Rover’s Relief CBD Salve for Pets

Published October 18, 2019 by Maryanne

Rover's Relief

Earlier this week I helped out at a pet expo for two reasons: 1. To network with those who were possibly interested in my professional blogging services or having me ghost write their books (after all, anyone who is self-employed should have a book no matter what line of work they are in); 2. I LOVE ANIMALS! And nothing beats a good score of new products for my kitties. They truly deserve the best.

When you’re a person like myself, either on the go (driving long distances) or at home plugging away on the computer (writing assignments or my next book!), no matter how much you love your life and what you do, you are bound to get a little stressed and achy.

A few weeks ago I noticed a pinch in my shoulder area. I was right on it with acupuncture and chiropractic treatments. Not quite yet healed, I was starting to feel a little achy in the shoulder area again.

Around this time I met RaChelle Lobre, of Rover’s Pet (roverspet.com). I’m always ready to share the story of how CBD oil made my cat Bennie more comfortable during his final days here on earth. Then I got to talking about my achy shoulder. RaChelle suggested taking a big glob of Rover’s Relief CBD salve and putting it on my shoulder.

I did as she suggested and within minutes, my shoulder pain stopped. This salve helped me more than any of the acupuncture or chiropractic treatments did! I was now able to dress and undress without being in pain.

That night I slept like a baby. I woke up the next day feeling like a brand new person, ready to face the world! Hell, if it’s good enough for Rover, it’s good enough for me!

This premium hemp salve contains 500mg CBD oil, and no THC. It’s easy to use and smells pleasant. I recommend using before bedtime because it truly relaxes you.

If Rover’s Pet worked that good for me, imagine what it could do for a dog?

Our babies count on us to give them nothing but the best. If your pet can use a little relief, this is a product I trust and recommend.

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for blogging, ghost writing, writing, and motivational speaking engagements. She is the author of the following books :

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: 10 Ways to Become Your Own Hero” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback or Kindle version, visit: https://www.amazon.com/Be-Extra-Ordinary-Ways-Become/dp/1733546227

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261

And check out her anti-bullying You Tube channel, Be YOUniquehttps://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLq6J9MSvcjd-haQ30ycLWA?view_as=subscriber

 

Love Cats Now Out of Print — Seeking Traditional Publisher for New Edition!

Published July 30, 2019 by Maryanne

Love Cats front and back cover

Love Cats by Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta

It was the ’80s and it was hot! The romance of Beck Stewart and Janey Peyton took place in the new age dance clubs. They bonded over their love for books and music; and of course their intense sexual chemistry.

But major red flags were revealed when Beck brought Janey home for the very first time. He not only discovered that she was a snoop, but that she wasn’t fond of his beloved cat Morticia.

Then the drama truly reared it’s ugly head when Janey’s jealousy got the best of her. You see, Beck was a hard worker. Janey was a trust fund baby who didn’t have to work. Janey began spending her lonely days going on sexual escapades to “get back” at Beck for “neglecting” her.

Will this couple make it? And what happens when a kitten shows up at Janey’s doorstep? Can she learn to love cats?

Love Cats was my very first work of fiction. Making a living as a journalist most of my adult life, I only knew how to speak of the truth. When creating these characters, I did so much research to “re-live” the 1980s through them. I wanted the book to be as authentic as possible. I wasn’t going to use phrases people use today in my book.

I also had a good friend, Todd Gordon, who is a screenwriter, go over Beck’s words. Is this how a guy talks? I asked him.

In Beck, I wanted to great a guy who was cool, but also a bit of a pushover. In many romantic novels, you see the woman as a victim. I wanted to illustrate that men can be victims too in the world of romance. Throughout Love Cats Beck remains hopeful for the relationship, until Janey pushes his button to the max the time she comes home when the sun comes up, wearing a completely different outfit she wore the night before.

With Janey, I wanted to create the most selfish character possible. As a late bloomer in social media, I started using Facebook in 2013, against my better judgement. One of my clients, who I helped ghostwrite a book, sold me on it. She said that she was able to sell many books thanks to her presence on Facebook. When my first book, On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist, was self-published, my publishing company said that I sold more books the first day than the average author sells in a year! Anyway, being on Facebook, I witnessed firsthand how selfish people could be. You can’t blame social media. People were always like this, but social media magnifies it tenfold.

For example, in my article for Gasm, “Selfish Sex” I explain how I believe most of the population are takers: http://gasm.org/article/and-now-back-to-me/

When I see selfishness taken to the maximum level in real life, I can only imagine how bad these people are in bed. With that, I created sex scenes where the lead character Janey Peyton takes. She’ll get her rocks off and not reciprocate.

But as a humanitarian who believes people are truly good, I give Janey’s character much room for growth. And how else can that happen but through making a major connection with a little animal. In this case, a kitten who shows up at her doorstep.

Throughout the book, I keep the 1980s element, in both music and style. For example, nose rings were far from popular back then, but every now and then, you’d see some cool person wearing them. I also featured Betsy Johnson fashions, and some throwbacks who still wore featured hair in the 1980s. There’s a major fashion upgrade when Janey Peyton gives Heather makeover tips and she emerges with her blonde hair slicked back like the ladies in Robert Palmer’s “Addicted to Love” video.

While it was the 1980s and ’80s music was a stand-out, I didn’t ignore the fact that there were 1960s bands doing reunions, like The Monkees.

And what would a book about cats be without some reference to the play, Cats? Lyrics by both Robert Smith (The Cure) and Iggy Pop were purchased (and used by permission) from Hal Leonard Music publishing.

My all time favorite review from a reader spoke volumes about the novel: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/love-cats-maryanne-christiano-mistretta/1122001262

Since Love Cats was published May 2015, I’ve donated portions of proceeds to various animal groups. Now that it’s out of print, it seems to be more popular than ever as it’s climbing the Amazon ranks! Just last week, I received a phone call from a stranger asking, “How can I purchase Love Cats.” Knowing that it was now out of print, I told him he could try Amazon. I only have two copies left for myself. I noticed that Amazon was selling two books for $44.17. With some poking around, I discovered they were bought by another book selling company and you can now purchase them for over $80!

I’m determined to make another great go of it in a second edition, so readers do not have to pay extraordinary prices to feel the love that is Love Cats!

Love Cats was my second self-published book. Since then I’ve published three other books, traditionally. This is why I am turning down self-publishers who have been soliciting me ever since Love Cats first became out of print (and will continue to do so).

There is now a  Love Cats Too in the works. It’s the conclusion with characters from Love Cats and my other work of fiction, The Gypsy Smiled (not yet out of print and available on Amazon): https://www.amazon.com/Gypsy-Smiled-Maryanne-Christiano-Mistretta-ebook/dp/B074VC7MT9

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for blogging, ghost writing, writing, and motivational speaking engagements. She is the author of the following traditionally published books:

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: Ten Ways to Become Your Own Hero” will be available October 2019. To pre-order, go here: https://kicamprojects.com/shop/be-extraordinary/

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261

 

Freddie Mercury, Bullied as a Young Boy

Published July 3, 2019 by Maryanne

Freddie Mercury as a BoyFarrokh Bulsara (photo found via Google Search)

The other night, my husband and I once again went to see our favorite Queen tribute band, Almost Queen (http://www.almostqueen.com/). Note that they have been around long before the successful Bohemian Rhapsody film. That said, if you’re a true Queen fan who loves the deep tracks, as well as the hits, be sure to check them out, as you will definitely hear some rare gems.

Anyway, before the show, I thought about how I’ve heard the stories of Freddie Mercury being bullied as a young boy because of his overbite. He was called a donkey by school bullies.

But did that stop him from becoming Freddie Mercury? Absolutely not.

If you’re having a hard time and being bullied, perhaps you have that special something that you can bring to the table by being YOUnique!

Check out my new video, where I speak about Almost Queen, Freddie Mercury, and how being bullied didn’t stop him from becoming a household name! (And if you like it, give me a thumbs up).

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for blogging, ghost writing, writing, and motivational speaking engagements. She is the author of the following books (in which she mentions Freddie Mercury in both, and how he inspired her as a child, teenager, and still today!):

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: Ten Ways to Become Your Own Hero” will be available October 2019. To pre-order, go here: https://kicamprojects.com/shop/be-extraordinary/

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261

Dream Board Manifest! One Year Later!

Published June 9, 2019 by Maryanne

Dream Board June 2018My Dream Board, June 9, 2018

One year ago today, I created this Dream Board. And it’s astonishing how things manifested.

First, look close, you will see that animals are a priority in my life. Since this dream board, my husband Dennis and I were able to save a feral cat, Bennie, and take care of him for the rest of his months. He was already sick when we took him in with FIV. But we loved him with all our hearts and gave him the best care we could. Five months later, he had to be put down. I collapsed in my husband’s arms. We were both heart-broken. Our vet told us, “He came to you to live out the rest of his life.”

One month later, we took in Sammy. I adopted him from St. Hubert’s Animal Shelter in Madison, New Jersey. Sammy was considered a senior cat, at age 9, but he’s tiny and very kitten-like. He’s a little doll and fits in beautifully with the family. He’s best buddies with our kitty Nicholas, who is now 6 (and came into our lives on this day three years ago!)

At the beginning of 2019, I created a giving journal, keeping track of all the places I give donations to each week. Many of them involve giving to animals, especially cat rescues. Do you see the word “FREE“? I’m always winning things–and I do mean ALWAYS! One of the things I won since creating the dream board was a certificate for a tattoo — I got a cat silhouette on my inner arm.

See “Power of Positive Speaking“? (Upper middle?) THAT is my next biggest goal, to become a motivational speaker. I joined Toastmasters right after my “Best Girlfriend Getaway” (see lower right corner) in October (to “Summit of Greatness” in Columbus, Ohio). Three days of nothing but motivational speakers, including Jay Shetty, Lewis Howes, Amy Purdy, Lindsey Stirling,  and so much more.

And greatness was indeed achieved! Just a few months after joining Toastmasters, I excelled winning “Best Speaker” for a speech on David Bowie. Then I auditioned to do a workshop, “Be Your Own Hero” which was based on my upcoming book, “Be Extra-Ordinary: 10 Ways To Become Your Own Hero.”

Unexpectedly, I’ve also made a few friends at Toastmasters, that I go to lunch with; and some who have come see me speak!

Which brings me to ….

Dreams, Friends, and Love are right at the top … I’m always counting my blessings for the amazing friends that come into my life; especially those that I grow closer to each year. That goes for my husband too. My BEST friend ever — the person I want to spend time with more than anyone else. I’m so blessed to have people in my life I can share my dreams with. People I can cheer on too and watch them grow. My tribe. My high-five tribe!

Which brings me to …

Do you see Bright Ideas? Oh, I have many! Many which didn’t work out — yet. But it’s so fun throwing them out there to friends who believe in you. Going for lunch meetings with minds of greatness. These are my PEERS! I can’t believe it. Sometimes I have to ask myself, “Am I dreaming?”

Do you see the rainbow? Just a few days ago, I saw the first FULL rainbow I ever saw in my life. People hate NJ because of all the rain. But I LOVE it! As a writer, I love spending time inside, writing during a storm. One night after a storm, around dusk, the time I love best. My husband and I were taking a walk — and there it was, a full rainbow! It took my breath away.

The other stuff you see in the dream board is more vague and personal. Some day I may speak about it, but most likely won’t. As honest and open as I am, there’s a side to me that’s insanely mysterious that people will never find out about.

That said, I’m thrilled that I’ve grown so much in my spiritual journey — and have a long way to go; which is why I am pro-aging and you’ll NEVER hear me longing for youth. I’m having such a beautiful love affair with my aging self!

LIFE IS AMAZING. I AM BLESSED! ❤

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for blogging, ghost writing, writing, and motivational speaking engagements. She is the author of the following books:

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: Ten Ways to Become Your Own Hero” will be available October 2019. To pre-order, go here: https://kicamprojects.com/shop/be-extraordinary/

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your copy, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261

Welcome to the Family, Sammy!

Published May 14, 2019 by Maryanne

DSCF3551.JPGOur little Sammy

One month ago today, I brought 9-year-old Sammy into our family.

I went to St. Hubert’s Animal Shelter (https://www.sthuberts.org/animals-available-for-adoption) with a different intention. They were hosting a spring shopping event, but nothing struck me. Since St. Hubert’s is a half hour from where I live, I wasn’t ready to drive home yet so I asked to see the cats that were up for adoption.

At home was another cat named Nicholas. He was a stray that my husband and I took in about a month after my second cat Derick had to be put down, at the ripe old age of 19.

Nicholas is a dream. He’s smart, cuddly, and loves to play. So I needed a cat that also liked to play and wouldn’t be taken advantage of by Nicholas. Nicholas wasn’t good with our beautiful feral Bennie who recently had to be put down because of a brain tumor. We ended up having to separate them, with Bennie upstairs, Nicholas downstairs, and a gate between them at the top of the stairs. Bennie was too passive, and Nicholas too dominant and possessive. It was heartbreaking. My husband and I wanted a house of peace and harmony. When I met him, I had Billy Cat and Derick. They were 7 and 9 at the time and both lived to 19. They were like brothers. They’d have occasional fights, but they were always together.

So, at St. Hubert’s, I straight out said, “I need a cat that won’t take shit from another cat.”

I was there for hours before I saw Sammy (then named Simba). He had confidence and swagger. Small at 11 pounds, compared to Nicholas at 14. He was not skittish. He was comfortable with being held and kissed.

Sammy was in the shelter — on and off — since he was a kitten. Two people brought him back because he had accidents outside the litter box. Looking back, so did Billy and Derick, so I knew what I was getting into.

St. Hubert’s offered a trial period of a week or two. After week two, I was so proud to officially adopt Sammy!

It was great because he got along with Nicholas from the start! I didn’t have to separate them. One month later, they are buddies and do everything together. Nicholas never used his cat bed, until Sammy started using it. Now the two sleep in their cat beds side by side. They eat together, sleep together, play together. And they both love to cuddle with Mommy and Daddy.

As for the litter box issue. Once or twice Sammy did have an accident. Once we moved the litter box away from the wall and gave it more of a center spot, he was fine. Cats are particular. You have to experiment with them.

All animals have their unique personalities. You have to work with them–what they like, what they don’t like, how you can pet them, how they like to be held. They are more than animals, they are little souls! When you figure them out, you have a friend for life. Sammy is a perfect little angel and we love him so much! ❤

Welcome to your FUREVER home Sammy!

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for motivational speaking engagements and is the author of the following books: 

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: Ten Ways to Become Your Own Hero” will be available October 2019. To pre-order, go here: https://kicamprojects.com/shop/be-extraordinary/

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your copy, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261

Bennie: A Cat Worthy of a Radiant Diamond

Published May 13, 2019 by Maryanne

SAM_3266 (1)Rest in Peace Bennie Cat

It’s been almost three months since my husband and I had to put down our beloved Bennie. And it still hurts us.

Several weeks ago, the burden was lifted a bit. I adopted a 9-year-old “senior” cat from St. Hubert’s Animal Shelter, Madison, New Jersey. A little doll of a cat. A small 11-pounder that came with the name Simba (which we changed to Sammy). Sammy is a perfect angel; very kitten-like, which is why I put the word “senior” in quotes. He gets along beautifully with our Nicholas, who is 6. They play together, eat together, sleep together. It’s an absolute joy to have a household with two healthy cats living in harmony. The first time since 2014 when my Billy Cat and Derick, who both lived to 19, were still alive.

Bennie came into our lives last summer. He was a feral turned friendly. Together, my husband and I made the decision to bring him in. At the time he seemed healthy. We got a check from our vet. He had FIV, a feline auto-immune disorder, but the vet reassured us Bennie could live a long life. She said he was 3.

We were ecstatic to take in this cat who was not only gorgeous, but the best cat I ever had in my life. He just loved to be pet and snuggle. He preferred strokes along his back over food. He’s stop eating to look up to us as if to say, “Pet me.”

The thing is, it wasn’t harmonious with Nicholas around. Because Bennie was sick, he didn’t want to play with Nicholas. He actually hid from him. We had to separate them, giving Bennie one of the larger bedrooms upstairs as a comfort zone, and gated our upstairs so Nicholas couldn’t fight with him.

It was rough. But what was even rougher was watching Bennie’s health quickly go down hill. We took him to three different vets. He ate but kept losing weight. Then he lost his eyesight and started having tremors. The result was Bennie had a brain tumor and we put him down.

I was incredibly hard because he was young and there was no emotional preparation for this. After we was put down, I collapsed into my husband’s arms. And then I got really sick. I’ll spare my readers the gory details, but I learned the hard way, I needed to manage stress better. With the help of my nutritionist, I am back on track.

Nevertheless, my husband and I still think about how much we loved Bennie. Even with Nicholas and Sammy around to love and entertain us, we miss Bennie terribly. We fell asleep in each others arms last night thinking of Bennie.

This morning I woke up earlier than usual — in fact, I woke up because Nicholas was on my side of the bed purring loudly as he snuggled against me. It must have been fate because I used my extra time to do some enjoyable internet surfing, instead of the usual promoting my work on Facebook and Linked In.

I was THRILLED to come across this site, with examples of diamonds made from cat ashes: https://www.heart-in-diamond.com/pet-ashes-to-diamond/cat.html

I never knew that cat ashes could be made into diamonds! AND according to the color of the cat! Bennie was the only cat my husband and I had that was orange/yellow. It wasn’t planned that way, it just happened that way.

Heart in Diamond has the perfect orange/yellow Radiant cremation diamond, which will represent Bennie perfectly, as he always was our sunshine cat. (Coincidentally, the room we had him in was carpeted orange/yellow — the room that had the best sunlight!)

Heart in Diamond offers an authenticity check and an affordable payment plan, without interest. You can order more than one diamond, also. Why not? There are so many cuts to choose from, for both men and women.

No disrespect to the crematory who put together Bennie’s ashes in a most beautiful box, but getting a cremation diamond necklace made from Bennie’s ashes will always keep him close to my heart. Bennie deserves it! In his short time here on earth, he taught me — and my husband — an incredible lesson. The lesson was no matter what life throws your way, keep fighting. Bennie was our little fighter. And in both life and death, he is an inspiration.

Ashes to ashes, dust to dust, and ashes to diamonds. For our Bennie Cat, a true diamond in every sense of the word!

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for motivational speaking engagements and is the author of the following books: 

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: Ten Ways to Become Your Own Hero” will be available October 2019. To pre-order, go here: https://kicamprojects.com/shop/be-extraordinary/

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your copy, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261