Dariel's World

Hi. I'm Dariel Raye, an interracial/multi-cultural paranormal romance, urban fantasy, and psy/suspense author, and every day of this journey is a learning experience. I'm also a counselor, musician, and animal lover. My stories are about all-conquering love and romance, and I enjoy hosting other authors as well. Enter a world where werewolves, vampires, multi-shifters, vamp-like Nephilim, Vodouin Fey, and all things paranormal capture our hearts...

You might also like to visit my website.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

You're Invited To a September Party!

sexy couples photo: coupleonwall coupleagainstbrickwall.jpg Story-inspiring photograohy

You’re invited to a September Party!

What? – Unforgettable Lovers

Where? – Dariel’s Blog

When? – September 5th  –  until I’ve hosted all my guest authors

Who are the guest authors? – Romance author friends including Diantha Jones, Kayelle Allen, Ann Gimmpel, P.L. Parker, and more…
Let’s delve into the minds of some fascinating characters! Each lover is unique, and there’s always at least one who is unforgettable…

Here’s the scoop: each author has chosen a hero or heroine from one of their books, and those characters will tell us in their own words, what makes someone an unforgettable lover. Their opinions are priceless.

You’ll also catch a glimpse of some of those characters in action with excerpt snippets and a description of each character’s book.

During the month of September, I’ll pick dates and host 3 or 4 authors a day, giving the characters a chance to express themselves.

At the end of September, two (2) commenters will receive the book of their choice from the books highlighted at the party, my treat. Each comment gives you extra points and raises your chance to win!

Authors, if you’re interested in participating but haven’t contacted me yet, PM me on Facebook @Dariel Raye, or Twitter @Pendarielraye

Friday, August 29, 2014

Dariel's Flasher Fiction Friday Stop: "Afterthoughts"

Hey, Everybody! Finally trying to make a comeback from my unexpectedly lengthy health issues, and happily rejoining my friends at Flasher Friday Fiction!

Every Friday, we all use a pic lovingly chosen by our majestic leaders and use this pic as our prompt to write 100 words - no more, no less. After you take a look at this one, click here to take a peek at my friends' posts, too. Unlike my heroine this week, you won't be disappointed. LOL Oh, and we LOVE comments. Here's the pic and my take on it...

We met at a cast party. Such a great dancer, our bodies gyrating in tandem, and he’s fuckin’ hot to look at, but now…

“You okay?” His voice is strained. What? Really?

Collecting myself. “Um, yeah. Fine.”

Hell no! I’m not ‘okay!’ I’m disappointed, disillusioned, still horny as hell. I can’t believe I wore my rockin’ gold mini just to end up pummeled, pawed, uncomfortable, and dissatisfied.

Why do I still have these damned uncomfortable heels on, anyway? His idea of sexy.

“Sure you’re okay?” He peeps at me from between my legs, a wounded puppy.

“Sure. That was…great.”

Random Thoughts On Becoming a Writer: Why Even Non-Booklovers Sometimes Become Writers

Reading | Author Sara Paretsky - Part 2

Random Thoughts On Becoming a Writer:  Why Even Non-Booklovers Sometimes Become Writers
I’m sure you’ve noticed the trend. Readers are booklovers, and a statistically disproportionate number of booklovers, even the ones who didn’t start writing stories in childhood, eventually become writers.

I’m a firm believer in personal and career “callings,” predestined relationships and best career fits, so in my world it makes perfect sense for avid readers to eventually decide to try their hand at writing. On the other hand,  drastic changes like suddenly deciding to write when you’ve never even enjoyed reading (and still don’t, in some instances) much of anything requires explanation. 

As I said, it’s easy to explain why someone who has always written or read stories, poetry, or prose, would want to continue doing so – a calling, so to speak, but what leads so many people who’ve never been avid readers, let alone writers, to suddenly write? Well, I have a few ideas about things that could be going through their minds, three good reasons, two not so good reasons. I hope you don’t mind me sharing them with you. 
  1. Following a major life event (illness, loss of a loved one, relocation, successful/ or not to successful dating, buying a house, starting a business, marriage or divorce, pregnancy/new child, weight loss, loss of a job or status, loss of income, etc.)Major life events or changes whether we’re affected positively or negatively, often drive us to share our experience or knowledge with others. I’ve been writing since childhood, so when my father was diagnosed with and eventually passed from Alzheimer’s Disease, my first inclination was to write about my family’s experience with the awful disease. I wanted to share information so that maybe my experience would be helpful to someone else. I found that several informative books had already been written on the subject, most by authors who had never written another story, poem, or essay. These authors saw a need and filled it. I’ve also noticed others writing about personal experiences in an attempt to share and help. 
  2. After reading an awesome book or watching a particularly enjoyable movie.
  3. After reading a terrible or poorly written book or watching a particularly bad or poorly developed movie. They either want to give someone joy just as the great movie uplifted them, or in the instance of a bad movie, they figure they can do a better job than the scriptwriter. Sometimes they can and do.
  4. Peer Pressure or envy – Someone they love/ or envy is a writer and they’d like to share that world with them/ or see if they can be just as or more successful. I’ve heard stranger stories of people stumbling upon a career.
  5. They have no idea what they are called to do, so they figure “why not write a book? Anybody can do that, right?” Hmm. I’d like to read a study about how often this happens…

What do you think? Why did you become a writer?


Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Dariel's Feature - "Witch's Bane": The Witch Chronicles, Book 2 by Ann Gimpel

Witch’s Bane
The Witch Chronicles, Book 2
By Ann Gimpel

Publisher: Taliesin

Release Date: 8/7/14

Genre: Dark Paranormal Romance
65,000 words

Two stubborn people—a witch and a mage—come together with a fierceness borne of desperation. Can passion trump their intense need for independence? Will they live long enough to find out?

Roz, Jenna, and Colleen are the last of the demon-stalking witches. So far, they’ve escaped disaster, but their luck is running low. When demons strike in the midst of Colleen’s wedding, Roz launches desperate measures because she and her sister witches are Earth’s only hedge against being overrun by Hell’s minions. As she shape-shifts to keep one step ahead of the demons, at least it takes her mind off her other problems. Personal ones. She burned through a couple of marriages with a string of loser men before, after, and in between. Though she wants to be happy for Colleen, the jealousy bug bit deep and hasn’t let go.

In Roz’s secret heart she’s attracted to Ronin, one of the Daoine Sidhe. He’s so profanely beautiful she can barely breathe around him, but he’s also headstrong and arrogant. Not good partner material, she tells herself, unless she wants to end up dusting her heart off one more time.

Ronin set his sights on Roz when she was at his home in the U.K. for a strategy meeting and he can’t get her out of his mind. Unfortunately, she’s so prickly getting close to her requires scheming. He casts an enchantment to lure her at Colleen’s wedding, but she senses the spell and rebuffs him.

Roz is used to calling the shots. So is Ronin. Sparks fly. Tempers run hot, right along with an attraction too strong to be denied. Roz and Ronin come together with a fierceness borne of desperation, but demons are determined to rid themselves of the witches for good, no matter what it takes.

Ronin Redstone unwound his arm from Roz and gripped his hands together in his lap to lessen the temptation to touch her again. Where he figured most of the guests were anxious to see the bride, he’d been interested in Roz. Probably too interested since he’d bounced to his feet the moment she entered the room and had even spun the mildest of spells to coerce her to sit near him. He pressed his lips into a flat line as he wrestled with his thoughts. Ever since he’d met the tall, imposing witch at his home in northern England a couple of weeks before, he’d been able to think of little else. She even entered his dreams with her silky black hair, pronounced cheekbones, and hawk-like nose. In those dreams, she was naked, her bronze skin glimmering in moonlight.
Her heady scent, pine forests and jasmine, tickled his nostrils and made him wonder what she’d feel like in his arms. Once he kicked the door open to that slippery slope, his cock sprang to life, clearly eager to find out. He tried to clip his libido before things whirled out of control and she noticed his arousal, but his cock wasn’t in the mood for negotiation—or retreat. He wove the tiniest don’t look here spell and draped his lower body with it.
In years past, he’d simply have created a love charm, imbued it with compulsion, and bedded the woman. That probably wasn’t a good idea, though. Roz would sense his magic, be outraged he tried to coerce her, and that would be the last he ever saw of the striking witch. Never mind she had good reason to not want much to do with him since he’d been one of the key players two hundred years ago who’d suggested foisting demon stalking onto the witches. He tightened his jaw muscles. Who could have guessed his little machination to get his kin out from under a highly unpleasant task would nearly be the death of the few witches who’d inherited the power through a magical version of gene splicing? Of course, he’d also been the one to send Duncan to fetch one of the witches to quell a demon uprising in the U.K. last month. That was how they’d discovered only three of the special witches remained…
No wonder she’s not overly fond of me. Ronin grimaced, not liking the truth in his thoughts. An inner voice huffed, reminding him it wasn’t his fault the witches in question hadn’t produced more offspring, but he shushed it.
Surely I can at least charm Roz out of that sour expression on her face.
He forced his breathing into a regular pattern and glanced toward Duncan and Colleen at the front of the room. The resident witch had completed her part of the ceremony and Titania was speaking in Gaelic so old he had trouble following it. The Sidhe binding ceremony lasted at least half an hour, so he let his thoughts drift. Anywhere but to his cock, which still throbbed uncomfortably.
As de facto leader for the Sidhe, a post he held more because no one else wanted it than because of any special skills on his part, he sensed they stood at the edge of a cataclysmic event. Abbadon and his henchmen, the Irichna demons, had grown appallingly strong. Capturing them one at a time and shepherding them to the Ninth Circle of Hell where they were trapped for all eternity wasn’t a workable solution anymore. There were too many of them, and maybe not enough space in the bottom of Hell.
Because he was afraid of a firm answer regarding Hell’s demon storage capacity, he hadn’t asked Titania, though surely she’d know. If they couldn’t dump Irichna behind the Ninth Circle’s gate, he had no idea what they’d do with them. And if Abbadon consolidated his full power, Earth would be laid waste. Ronin clamped his jaws together. Apocalypse didn’t come close to describing what would happen if Abbadon were freed from protecting his demons and could concentrate on taking over Earth.
In addition to not inquiring too closely about the Irichna, I also haven’t asked about Oberon. Ronin grimaced again. If the King of Faerie were truly so tired of immortality he’d let himself fade into the Dreaming, Ronin didn’t want to know about that, either.
When did I turn into such a craven I avoid unpleasant answers?
Even though he wasn’t expecting one, a response popped up anyway. He’d loved a human woman once, but she’d died bearing their son, who’d perished right along with her. The major vessel serving her heart had ruptured, and no amount of Sidhe magic could heal her or breathe life into their dead child. Ronin withdrew from the other Sidhe after that, mostly because he didn’t want to hear their lectures about the whole debacle being his own fault. After all, they weren’t supposed to mate outside their blood. When he finally picked up the reins of command a couple of centuries later—or maybe it had been three—he held himself aloof and avoided confrontations with anyone, about anything.
He ground his jaws harder together. His internal inventory was damned depressing; it forced him to take a harsh look at himself, and he didn’t like what he saw. He glanced at Titania. She clasped Duncan’s and Colleen’s hands between her own, and his eyes widened. Had he truly spent the entire ceremony sunk in memories and self-pity?
It would appear so, he thought dryly. In moments, Titania would utter the final words, Duncan would kiss Colleen, and the ritual would be done. He barely had time to wonder why Titania hadn’t kicked up more of a fuss about Duncan marrying a mortal, when the bridal pair kissed.
The tiniest sigh escaped Roz, and he looked sidelong at her. Her full lips were parted in half a smile, and she looked captivated by the ancient binding that had unfolded, mostly without him paying one whit of attention to it. She leaned toward him, her earlier ire apparently forgotten. “They make such a lovely couple,” she whispered.
Ronin narrowed his eyes and looked hard at Duncan and Colleen, wrapped in one another’s arms and kissing enthusiastically. He didn’t know about the lovely couple part, because he didn’t view the world that way. “They do look happy,” he whispered back because he thought he ought to say something.
Bubba, who’d been standing off to one side, made a grab for a bag Ronin hadn’t noticed before. The changeling reached inside and Ronin’s internal alarm went off. The changeling was about to throw something at the couple. Had the creature been co-opted by demons? It wasn’t unheard of since their race contained a smattering of demon blood. Afraid if he hesitated he’d be too late, Ronin pulled strong magic and rose to his feet.
Before he could loose it, Roz fastened a hand around his lower arm. “It’s just rice,” she said, her voice still low. “He’s going to throw rice at them. Stand down.”
Ronin met her dark, luminous gaze. “What sort of custom is that?” he demanded. Magic thrummed around him, making the air shimmer in iridescent hues. The changeling indeed tossed rice high in the air, showering everyone within a ten-foot radius of him, laughed uproariously, and then did it again.
“An old one.” Roz tugged on his arm and he sat reluctantly. “Bubba adores Colleen. He’s laid his life on the line for her a bazillion times. He’d never hurt her.”
“Better safe than sorry,” he muttered, feeling like an ass. “How was I to know?”
“It’s okay.” She let go of his arm and patted one of his hands.
As long as he was in an apologizing mood—they were rare for him—Ronin exhaled sharply and said, “I’m sorry I, um, suggested you sit next to me.”
She cocked her head to one side and quirked a brow. “If you’d only suggested, it would have been fine, but you did a tad more than that.”
Flutes and guitars began to play Mendelssohn’s “Wedding March.” Colleen and Duncan turned and floated up the center aisle with Bubba right behind, still throwing rice. Even Ronin had to admit they looked radiant. He’d known Duncan his entire life, and he’d never seen his fellow Sidhe look so carefree and besotted with joy. In one wild, unrestrained moment, before he glossed his emotions over with rationality, he wanted the same for himself.
Ronin felt Roz’s gaze still on him and knew he couldn’t ignore her comment. “You’re right,” he said stiffly. “I did do more than that.”
She repositioned herself so he had to look at her. “Why?”
Because I’ve wanted to strip you naked and worship your body from the day I met you. He cloaked his mind, hoping he’d been fast enough and she hadn’t read his thoughts. “I’m not quite sure,” he stumbled over the words, because they weren’t the truth.
Her dark gaze never left him as she weighed his statement. Finally she nodded, almost to herself. “When you figure it out,” she said and winked broadly, “be sure to let me know.”
Heat rose from his neck and swooshed over the top of his head. Damn! He was a Sidhe and a warrior. It was unseemly to blush like a love-struck maid. He opened his mouth to stammer some sort of reply, but she got up, along with the rest of the guests. “Come on,” she said. “I’m starving.”
He’d been afraid the second the ceremony was over, she’d race away from him as far and as fast as she could, but she’d just invited him to eat with her, at least he thought she had. He bit back a smile until just the edges of his mouth twitched. Maybe she didn’t abhor him as much as it seemed when she’d shot him that poisonous look once she sensed his magic.
I learned something. I have to ask her, not simply push her to do what I want. He hurried after her swishing skirt, not wanting to lose her in the crowd. He could always locate her, but the less magic he used until she got to know him, the better.
Roz caught up to Jenna just inside the dining area and hugged her. “Wasn’t it just perfect?” she gushed, still caught up in the mystical pull of dual wedding ceremonies.
Jenna hugged her back and nodded. She disentangled herself and eyed her friend. “What the hell, Roz? It isn’t like you to fall all over yourself.”
Roz settled her face into its usual, stern planes. “There. Is that better?”
Jenna grinned. “Yup. There’s the grumpy witch I know and love. What happened to you anyway? I looked back and you were trailing after that hunky Sidhe.”
“He snared me in a spell.”
“Ooooh.” Jenna clapped her hands together. “He must be interested.” She leaned close. “What did he do during the ceremony?”
Roz felt her face redden. “Nothing. I got mad at him once I realized he’d bamboozled me. Hush. Here he comes.”
“Awesome.” Jenna practically vibrated with enthusiasm. “He can eat with us.”
“I already invited him.”
A knowing look crossed Jenna’s face and she opened her mouth, but Roz hissed, “Can it, sister,” just before turning to Ronin and asking, “Where would you like to sit?”
He half-bowed—a courtly, old world gesture that drove home just how old he was—lifted Jenna’s hand to his lips, and said, “Nice to see you again, Miss Jenna. Anywhere the two of you wish to settle is fine with me.”
“Maybe we should get our food first,” Jenna suggested brightly, “since the tables will fill fast.”
“Good idea,” Roz snapped, feeling unaccountably jealous. Ronin hadn’t kissed her hand, but he’d been quick enough to snatch Jenna’s.
“If you don’t want him…” Jenna spoke in their telepathic speech.
“I thought you were interested in Tristan.” Roz led the way to a buffet table and picked up a plate.
Jenna smirked. “I am, but he’s not here.”
Roz dished up an interesting looking salad, brimming with shrimp and crab, and followed it with a few slices of rare beef and a roll. They found a table beneath a leaded glass window and laid their plates down.
“I’ll get us something to drink.” Ronin smiled. “Preferences?”
“What are you getting?” Roz asked, avoiding Jenna’s gaze.
“Mead,” he answered. “It’s what I prefer.”
“I’ll take Irish whiskey,” Jenna trilled and settled into her seat.
“Just bring me a glass of one or the other,” Roz muttered. “I’m not picky.” As soon as Ronin was out of earshot, or close enough, she glared at Jenna. “Leave him alone.”
“But you’re not even sure you’re interested in him,” Jenna protested.
“And how would you know that?” Roz stuffed a forkful of salad into her mouth, chewed with a vengeance, and swallowed.
The other witch dropped her gaze, looking sheepish. “I, um, peeked.”
Roz slammed a fist on the table hard enough the dishes rattled. “You looked inside my head without asking?”
“’Fraid so. Sorry.” Jenna started eating with a studied nonchalance.
Roz exhaled and then did it again. Both of them were lonely; getting angry with her longtime friend wouldn’t serve any purpose other than creating bad water under the bridge they’d have to clear at some point. “Jenna. It’s the wedding ceremonies. All the old magic in them makes us want what Colleen and Duncan have.”
“I suppose you’re right.” Jenna’s hazel gaze met hers and she looked repentant, her brows drawn together. “I’m sorry.”
“Me too.” Roz smiled crookedly. “Let’s not fight. Not today.”

@AnnGimpel (for Twitter)

Short Bio:
Ann Gimpel is a clinical psychologist, with a Jungian bent.  Avocations include mountaineering, skiing, wilderness photography and, of course, writing.  A lifelong aficionado of the unusual, she began writing speculative fiction a few years ago. Since then her short fiction has appeared in a number of webzines and anthologies. Her longer books run the gamut from urban fantasy to paranormal romance. She’s published over 20 books to date, with several more contracted for 2014.

A husband, grown children, grandchildren and three wolf hybrids round out her family.

Long Bio: 
Ann Gimpel is a mountaineer at heart. Recently retired from a long career as a psychologist, she remembers many hours at her desk where her body may have been stuck inside four walls, but her soul was planning yet one more trip to the backcountry. Around the turn of the last century (that would be 2000, not 1900!), she managed to finagle moving to the Eastern Sierra, a mecca for those in love with the mountains. It was during long backcountry treks that Ann’s writing evolved. Unlike some who see the backcountry as an excuse to drag friends and relatives along, Ann prefers solitude. Stories always ran around in her head on those journeys, sometimes as a hedge against abject terror when challenging conditions made her fear for her life, sometimes for company. Eventually, she returned from a trip and sat down at the computer. Three months later, a five hundred page novel emerged. Oh, it wasn’t very good, but it was a beginning. And, she learned a lot between writing that novel and its sequel.

Around that time, a friend of hers suggested she try her hand at short stories. It didn’t take long before that first story found its way into print and they’ve been accepted pretty regularly since then. One of Ann’s passions has always been ecology, so her tales often have a green twist.

In addition to writing, Ann enjoys wilderness photography. She lugs pounds of camera equipment in her backpack to distant locales every year. A standing joke is that over ten percent of her pack weight is camera gear which means someone else has to carry the food! That someone is her husband. They’ve shared a life together for a very long time. Children, grandchildren and three wolf hybrids round out their family.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

How To Create An HTML Post For Blogger and WordPress

Takes so little to make some of us happy. One discovery that's not half as popular as I think it should be is the ready-made HTML post. Say you want your friends to help you promote your new release; one of the easiest ways to spread the word is to create one HTML doc (or docx) and send it, sans additional attachments and Jpgs.

This keeps your trusty friends from having to deal with formatting and coming up with an intro to fit your many attachments. Also ensures that each post will be uniform, with your Jpgs and docs in the same place, and all information included.

Since some bloggers have Blogger, and others Wordpress (or if they're like me, they have one of each), I suggest creating an HTML post for each one separately (formatting is different for each, that's why posts should be created separately). I'll tell you about each here. A little more work for you at the front end, but believe me, it saves a bunch of time when you get ready to send your posts to tour hosts and friends.

  1. Write text for your post in Word, first, including intro, purchase links, and contact links. You'll want your title in bold, of course, just above your intro.
  2. Take care of these details in Word to save time when you move to Blogger or WordPress. Write your intro. In the actual post, the intro will most likely be beneath your promo book cover, but that's up to you. Make sure you include headings in bold to separate your sections of text (ex. Blurb, Excerpt, About the Author, Purchase links, Contact Links), copy/paste your blurb, excerpt, and about the author sections from your files and include them in your Word doc.
  3. I like to embed purchase and contact links, so grab the links you want in your post and include them in your doc. This way, you won't have to keep jumping in and out of Blogger or Wordpress to grab links. They're all in one place. Just the way we like them ;-)
  4. Okay, now that we have most of our stuff in one place (all except pictures, and that's because I've found they're easier to format once you get into Blogger or Wordpress), copy your intro section and let's start with Blogger.
  5. Create this post just as you would any "new post," adding pictures and sections from the Word doc you created, including your embedded links. 
  6. Make sure everything's where you want it, then click "HTML" in the top LH corner. You'll see that your code has been created for you! Now select ALL (control~a) and Copy (control~c).
  7. From the Word doc you've created, click File>New and open a blank word doc to Paste (control~v) your code. Save as a Word doc. Now, when you send out your promo emails to blogger friends, just attach your new Word doc filled with the HTML code for your perfect promo post.
  8. For Wordpress users, create the post just as you would any "new post" in Wordpress, adding pictures and sections from the Word doc you created, including your embedded links.
  9. Make sure everything's where you want it, then click "Text" in the top RH corner. Once again, you'll see the code has been created for you! Select ALL and Copy. Open a new Word doc, Paste the code, and Save as a Word doc. Voila!! 
  10. You can either ask your host whether they're using Blogger or Wordpress, or send both, clearly denoting that one's for Blogger and the other is for Wordpress. (*Remember, you can not use the same HTML doc for both formats) When your hosts receive the HTML doc, all they have to do is select all and copy your attachment, then click "new post." For Blogger, click "HTML" then paste, and for Wordpress, click "Text" then paste. There's your post with minimized effort on your part, and minimal effort on the part of your hosts.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Nobody Wants To, But Let's Talk About It...

fit girl working out at the field under rainbow stock photography

Let’s talk about aging – no flowery intro, no smooth segue. In a society obsessed with youth, we really need to discuss aging more (since most of us spend much more of our time on this earth aging than being young [not disregarding the importance of nurturing a young heart]). I had a birthday this month, and with it came sentimental (I’m seldom sentimental) memories of the last 20 - 25 years. No, not EVERY one of the last 20 - 25 years, but special moments related to my awareness of age, appearance, life decisions, and wisdom (or the lack thereof. LOL). So, here’s my list of things we should all do to help ourselves along this unavoidable progression of living.
1.     Set goals in your 20’s, do your research, and take the best action to achieve those goals. Oh, and please please get some kind of education (college, trade, military, online courses, etc.). Education opens door and gives us options we can’t even imagine without it.
2.     Start an exercise regimen including aerobic activity you enjoy.
3.     Add weight training (it’s even better with a lover or close friend)
4.     Develop healthy eating habits (click here for a foolproof way to find what works best for you.)
5.     Develop and maintain healthy friendships and family relationships with wise, progressive people (more on this later)
6.     Take stock of your goals, decide which ones are still important to you, and decide what’s next. Again, do your research before taking action.
7.     Maintain your exercise regimen and guard your time like a mother bear
8.     Reevaluate your eating habits. Sometimes our dietary needs change as we age, so repeat the prescription process from your 20’s.
9.     Nurture friendships and healthy family relationships by being a good friend or family member. This is your support circle and these people (and pets) become even more valuable over time. Steer clear of fair weather friends, fowl weather friends, ne’er do wells, and the temporary coat-tail hangers who only want to take. Also, you are grown! You really can avoid family members who try to bring you down and box you in.This is your time to fly. Get rid of any excess baggage.
10.  Make sure to take regular vacations and plan at least one day a week to pamper yourself (I know you’re busy, but this is a must). Guard your time like a ninja warrior.
11.  Okay, if you laid the groundwork in your 20’s and 30’s, this is the time to play more than you work. Travel, take lessons in something you’ve always wanted to learn about, spend more time enjoying life than working. Really. It’s important. Life is short, and you want to thrive, not just survive.
12.  One of the best ways to maintain your exercise regimen is to rev it up with some activities you can include during your vacations. I’d LOVE to visit New Zealand, speaking of revved-up activities.
13.  If you haven’t already, this is the time you’ll most likely be called upon to be a good, faithful, supportive friend. The easiest way to support a friend is to do for him/her what you would need done for you. First, actively listen and ask what you can do to help.
14.  Spend time with your loved ones. Go out for each other’s birthdays, host and share pot-luck get-togethers regularly, and share your lives.

I can't offer much info about the 50’s yet (I’m still new at this part), but I have learned one thing, and that’s not likely to change - everyone needs at least three things to thrive in life: purpose (something constructive to do), love (someone who cares enough to bear witness to and share our lives), and hope (something positive to look forward to). Focus on these things and aging might just be a bit less painful – in fact, it can be downright enlightening.