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Saturday, April 23, 2016

Who Doesn't Like a Free eBook?


All you have to do is subscribe to the
Debra Shiveley Welch Love and Writing Newsletter and win a free copy of
My award winning eBook Cedar Woman
Yup, free.
Simply click on the above banner for your free eBook and free newsletter.

Nest month's newsletter: Writing Your First Book

 Winner of the Best Native American Fiction Award
By TW Brown, Author, Editor, and Reviewer

Cedar Woman struck me very early on with the powerful emotions a reader could feel from just the written word. It grabs you so quickly that even events early on make you feel WITH the characters, not FOR them. I know that men may not be her target audience, but you GUYS will be missing out on something extraordinary if you pass over this book.

The inclusion of a plethora of Native American words and phrases was done in such a seamless manner that the reader stops seeing them as you become engrossed in this story. A translation is provided in footnotes, but you no longer find yourself looking after a while. You are simply too engrossed in the story and it almost seems to make itself understood when some of the Native Sioux words appear in the dialog.

Throughout the story, I was struck by how similar yet different cultures that live side-by-side can be. Having a very good friend who is a member of one of the Pacific Northwest tribes, I recalled early on our struggles to communicate because our styles were so oddly different. This story gives you a look at a love story from a cultural perspective that you may not even realize exists.

The one thought that came over and over as I read was that this book is "The Notebook" for a Native American audience. Having enjoyed some wonderful films that I would have missed otherwise, I can attest to the striking difference in films from and about the Native Americans and our own. This story is ripe for a Native film maker to scoop up. (See "Skins" to really understand what I am trying to say here.)

Cedar Woman by Debra Shiveley Welch is a wonderful story that will make you feel things with the characters as you read. Ladies will love this, and guys...if you want to score some huge points, make this the first book on your "Couples" reading list and share in it together.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Help Stop Domestic Abuse!

Learn the signs; save a life.

Domestic Violence in America: General Statistics and Facts
  • Women ages 18 to 34 are at greatest risk of becoming victims of domestic violence.
  • More than 4 million women experience physical assault and rape by their partners.
  • In 2 out of 3 female homicide cases, females are killed by a family member or intimate partner.

Domestic Violence: Statistics & Facts - Safe Horizon


Spirit Woman builds off of my past and includes the true stories of three other women who suffered from domestic abuse. Wrapped into one, heart-rending story, Spirit Woman tells the tale of Nickie Bahiti Greene. Desperate for love, she grabs it when she can and finds herself in a living hell.

As the story unfolds, we are witness to Nickie's bravery and the loyalty and courage of her friend Beau. Does she escape and does Beau manage to save her, or will she ride the wing of Wakinyan Zitka to the edge of the universe where she would walk the five steps to the Spirit Path and into the Spirit World?  


You want to read this book and it's not because of the important subject matter that other reviewers have told you is there and because it has won an award. No, it's because once you start reading Spirit Woman, you won't want to stop.

Great plot, great writing, great characters (good and just plain awful), great background of Native American tribal lore, and food. Yes, food. Don't you want to read all those great dishes that Nickie is cooking and what's being served at Cedar Woman? Of course you do.

You want to read about the beautiful Nickie and her horrifying childhood and the very, very wrong choice she makes out of loneliness. You will read away, wanting to know what is going to happen next, routing for Nickie and her amazing friends.

And BAM, it's over and we have to wait for the sequel. Come on Debra Shiveley Welch, why did you do this to me?

While you're waiting, why not read Cedar Woman (what, you haven't read Cedar Woman yet?).

As for the cockatoo, his name is Beau and, oh stop laughing, he's very important.
The following may be old news to some, but the following article was just brought to my attention, and to me confirms that what I experienced was real!


Published on Spirit Science and Metaphysics


Afterlife is something that has been experienced by people who came back to life to tell their unbelievable stories. The most amazing account experiences are the one of a 25-year-old Harvard trained brain neurosurgeon Dr. Eben Alexander. This cannot be one of the usual afterlife accounts. Here’s his story. Dr. Alexander never believed in after life of even a non physical spirit. Most of his life he was around people who only believed in material life and even believing in the soul. Every time he heard or read about n afterlife story he just thought it was a hallucination that the person was experiencing. He was in a coma for about a week because of a deadly case of meningitis, while he was in a coma he experienced something that do one could explain and it changed his view of the afterlife.

Harvard neurosurgeon afterlife1

Upon returning to his body, Dr. Alexander wrote the number 1 NY Times bestseller book “Proof of Heaven”. In the book that he wrote he states that life on earth is just a test to help our soul evolve and grow so that we succeed with love and compassion.

Here are a few notable points from the book:
• His afterlife experience was so real that the experience as a human on Earth is just an artificial dream in comparison to that.
• The fabric of the afterlife was love. Yes, love dominated everything so the presence of evil was small. If you wish to understand the Universe, you should know love.
• All communication was telepathic. There was no need of words. All the questions asked were answered telepathically.
When he was asked what he wants everyone to know about the spiritual realm, he answered that you are more precious and loved than you can possibly imagine. You are always safe and never alone. The unconditional and perfect love of God affects everyone.
“Love is, without a doubt, the basis of everything. Not some abstract, hard-to-fathom kind of love, but the day-to-day kind that everyone knows-the kind of love we feel when we look at our spouse and our children, or even our animals. This love is not jealous or selfish, but it’s unconditional and in its purest and most powerful form. This is the reality of realities, the incomprehensibly glorious truth of truths that lives and breathes at the core of everything that exists or will ever exist, and no remotely accurate understanding of who and what we are can be achieved by anyone who does not know it, and embody it in all of their actions.”, says Dr. Alexander.
Now, we should discuss credibility. His neocortex was nonfunctional during the coma, so there’s no scientific evidence why he experienced this. In his book, he gives refutations for 9 scientific explanations of what happened to him.

Harvard neurosurgeon afterlife2

Exploring naturalistic explanations
Here are the five explanation in Appendix B from his book.
1. A primitive brain stem program to ease the terminal pain and suffering. This didn’t explain the rich nature of his recollections.
2. The distorted recall of memories from the deeper parts of the system like the amygdala that has enough overlying brain to be protected from the bacterial inflammation which occurs at the brain surface. This did not explain the robust, richly interactive nature of the recollections.
3. DMT dump. DMT is a natural serotonin that causes visions. He is personally familiar to the serotonin related drug experiences (LSD) from his teen years. He has not had a DMT experience, but he has seen patients under the influence. The rich ultra-reality still needs a functioning audio and visual neocortex as target regions in which to generate a rich experience like he had. The prolonged coma has destroyed his neocortex, where all the serotonin from the raphe nuclei in his brain stem would have effects on the audiovisual experiences. However, his cortex was off so the DMT would have no place in the brain to act.
4. A reboot phenomenon – a random dump of fragmented memories due to old memories in the affected neocortex, which might occur on restarting the cortex into consciousness after a prolonged failure like meningitis. This seems most unlikely when you take into account the details of his vivid recollections.
5. An unusual memory generation through an archaic visual pathway is used in birds, but not in humans. Humans can experience it only in cases when they’re cortically blind. It provided no clues to the ultra-reality he witnessed and failed to explain the auditory-visual incorporation.
Dr. Alexander’s near death experience account is the most credible because he has a scientific background.