Stalking–a serious matter

roses are red

This blog tends to be lighthearted most of the time and about books, the ones I’ve read and the ones I want to read. Sometimes it is about writing and my personal pursuits. But on occasion something happens in life and I feel the need to get a bit more serious.

Today, I wanted to share some important info with everyone about stalking. Sure, people joke about it, make passing remarks and everyone seems to have their own ideas about what it means, but when it happens to you, it can be a truly frightening and even dangerous situation.

What is stalking? According to the United States Department of Justice:

Stalking is a pattern of repeated and unwanted attention, harassment, contact, or any other course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to feel fear.

Stalking can include:

Repeated, unwanted, intrusive, and frightening communications from the perpetrator by phone, mail, and/or email.

Repeatedly leaving or sending victim unwanted items, presents, or flowers.

Following or laying in wait for the victim at places such as home, school, work, or recreation place.

Making direct or indirect threats to harm the victim, the victim’s children, relatives, friends, or pets.

Damaging or threatening to damage the victim’s property.

Harassing victim through the internet.

Posting information or spreading rumors about the victim on the internet, in a public place, or by word of mouth.

Obtaining personal information about the victim by accessing public records, using internet search services, hiring private investigators, going through the victim’s garbage, following the victim, contacting victim’s friends, family work, or neighbors, etc.

Source: Stalking Resource Center, National Center for Victims of Crime

So what should you do if this is happening to you? First of all, you have to accept that it can happen to anyone, male or female and that downplaying these types of behaviours can result in bodily harm to you or someone you love. This is NOT okay. You should have a right to use social media, your phone and live your life without fear of someone always being there making you miserable and making you feel insecure and unsafe.

What can you do about it?

There are many steps that can be taken to help protect yourself and to let the person involved in these actions know that you will not tolerate it.

 

Stalking is a dangerous crime that affects an estimated 6.6 million women and men each year.
Stalking—generally
defined as a pattern of behavior directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to feel fear—is
a crime under the laws of all 50 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. territories, and the federal government.
As many as 1 in 4 women and 1 in 13 men have experienced stalking victimization at some point during their lifetime
and most often the stalker is someone the victim knowsan acquaintance, a relative, or a current or former intimate
partner.
  • Stalking is unpredictable and dangerous.
  • No two stalking situations are alike.
  • There are no guarantees that what works for one person will work for another, yet victims can take steps to increase their safety
.
What To Do If You Are Being Stalked
1. Trust your instincts.
Victims of stalking often feel pressured by friends or family to downplay the stalker’s
behavior, but stalking poses a real threat of harm. Your safety is paramount.
2. Call the police if you feel you are in any immediate danger.
Explain why even some actions that seem
harmless—like
leaving
you a gift—are causing you fear.
3. Keep a record or log of each contact with the stalker.
Be sure to also document any police reports.
4. Stalkers often use technology to contact their victims.
Save all e-mails, text messages, photos, and postings on
social networking sites as evidence of the stalking behavior.
5. Get connected with a local victim advocate to talk through your options and discuss safety planning.

Call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1–800–799–SAFE.

For More Information
National Stalking Awareness Month
Stalking Resource Center
You should never have to live your life in fear. If you or someone you know is dealing with this type of situation, do something about it. Do not assume that it will get better or just go away on its own.
If you want to know more, please check out https://www.justice.gov/ovw/stalking

 

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Memoirs of a Dead White Chick

Memoirs of a Dead White ChickMemoirs of a Dead White Chick by Lennox Randon

It began as one of those days when I asked myself, what else could go wrong?
And then I died.

Eleanor, a harried, middle-aged White female elementary schoolteacher (and former police officer), begins her day by dying in the year 1999.

Somehow, while her essence is en route to wherever one’s essence goes upon death, she inadvertently ends up occupying the body of a 16-year-old Black male in 1858 Philadelphia.

Not only does she have to deal with the obvious gender, race, and time period changes, but she also has to figure out whether, when lives are at stake, she should interfere with history as she knows it.

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I do not believe it is humanly possible to read this book and not love it. Historical fiction with a unique twist has always been one of my preferred genres, and this book filled that niche perfectly.

Here’s what I loved:

Lennox Randon writes with such humour that I couldn’t help but giggle out loud. This is the kind of book that you are better off reading at home, unless you want people staring at you as if you have lost your mind for the sudden outbursts of giggles it causes. It has been a while since a book did that to me.

The main character is highly likable in both forms, and I could easily identify with her lifestyles in the beginning–and later became enthralled with the transition and the times she was living through. This novel is witty, intellectually stimulating, hilarious and also makes you stop and think about how much the world had changed in the last hundred or so years–as well ass how many things that should have changed–haven’t. It deals with some very serious issues–race, gender, etc., but is done in such a way that it still feels like a fun, enjoyable read.

I would definitely recommend this book to anyone looking for an excellent read. I must buy this book as gifts this year for others who could use an escape from daily life.

Two thumbs way up for this one.

This review is based on a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Tits and Bobs and perfectly passionate poetry

Nope, not a typo.

A couple things to cover. First of all, I can’t stop thanking people for all they have done for me since releasing my book last week. Carmen Stefanescu rocked my world this morning with her awesome and unexpected promo on her site, which you can find here. http://shadowspastmystery.blogspot.ro/2015/07/guest-promo-ci-ionia-martin.html?m=1 I hate to admit that I cry, but I did.

Thank you Carmen. Love you.

Also huge thanks to people who left a review on Amazon. I was so excited I nearly peed.

Second, some questions and a few declarations.

I have new respect for all of you indie authors. I have been writing and publishing for years under a couple of different pseudonyms and have always had a publishing house behind me. Even when I put out some previous “indie” novels, I had other people working on promoting and covers and such. I didn’t do it all myself, by any means. Now, I’m doing that for the first time and I’ve got some questions for the pros out there.

Other than the titles that appear here, under Ionia, I write adultish-romance and erotica books. I’m not ashamed of this. I enjoy doing what I do. I review everything but those, because believe me when I tell you there are some strange…worse than strange sub-genres out there in the erotica world and I figured I would spend more time updating my guidelines to exclude dinosaurs and bigfoot than I would reviewing. Erotica books tend to sell themselves. If you’ve got a kink for sale, then there is usually an audience for it somewhere. I’m concerned with the other, less vice-like titles.

HOW DO YOU PEOPLE FIND TIME TO WRITE, EDIT, MARKET, WRITE BLURBS, DESIGN COVERS, MAKE DINNER, DO THE LAUNDRY AND STILL SLEEP?

SUPERHUMANS!

Question 2. How do you get over the shyness of asking people to help promote you? Even when someone does something you didn’t ask them to do, don’t you kind of blush and kick your heels in an awe shucks manner? I do.

Question 3 Would you be interested in sharing a bit of your journey? I am figuring things out as I go, but I’m thinking about putting together a page here on Readful that is an advice from indie authors page. Free for anyone to look at if they want some info, and just collecting answers to some basic questions about writing and publishing indie stuff from various authors who would like to contribute. Links to your blogs would be included, of course. Would anyone be interested in doing that?

Next Useless factoid: I’ve only got a couple of indie novels left on my reading list and will soon be accepting more titles. I will still have to limit how many I take on. (Not just indie books, but books in general–I’m an addict and books are crack.)

I will start considering review requests unsolicited books again on September first.

Finally, Poetry. I love it. Poems seem to be closer to the heart of the author than a lot of other forms of writing. They can express mood, thought, emotion, a personal viewpoint–so many things. That said, it is also a really difficult category to sell books in. I would like to offer a spot on Readful Things every Friday for one author to promote your poetry, either through a poem with links to your blogs or books or through a cover image and sample of your work. I don’t guarantee thousands of views, (I don’t guarantee one, for that matter,) but if it will help get the word out then let’s do it! Contact me via readfulthings@gmail.com and send me an HTML post. I will let you know what date I will have your post up.

It will look something like this:

(Shameless best friend promo to follow)

Pamela Beckford writes poetry designed to inspire emotion. She is the author of three solo poetry collections and co-author of another. If you are interested in some steamy, emotional reading to share with your lover or to read on your own, check out her solo works, which show many different aspects of love, in beautifully worded poems.

Dreams of Love

Cover 5

LLaF

VoN

Find Pamela’s entire catalogue of works on her Author Central Page

Pamela Beckford’s Author Central