Book Tour: Just Friends


Just Friends
Elizabeth Grey
(The Agency, #1)
Publication date: September 15, 2017
Genres: Adult, Comedy, Romance

Win a signed copy, below!

Why did her heart have to choose him?

Violet Archer has her dream job at one of London’s top advertising agencies, and the fact she gets to work with Ethan Fraser every day makes it even better. He’s the best friend a girl could have. And she’s never even noticed how hot he is. Nope. Definitely not.

When a big night out deteriorates into a great big mess, Violet’s world starts to wobble like a drunk giraffe on stilts. She’s caught in a web of secrets, none of which are hers. And maybe she is starting to notice how hot Ethan is, after all. And sweet and kind and… oh dear.

Has Violet fallen for her best friend? Can their friendship survive yet another secret? And, the question Violet is most scared to ask, could Ethan have feelings for her too?

This raunchy, hilarious rom-com is the first in The Agency series by Elizabeth Grey.

Goodreads / Amazon

EXCERPT:

IT’S ONLY TAKEN THREE MONTHS, two weeks and five days, but here I am – in Stuart Inman’s Notting Hill bedroom, wearing underwear that screams ‘sex goddess’ and a spray tan that shrieks ‘never again!’

Thankfully Stuart is too busy burying his head in my cleavage to notice my tangerine armpits and stripy inner thighs. He’s also groaning and purring and nuzzling and . . . okay, I’m not really sure what he’s doing down there, but I hope he tries another move soon. I can think of much better things I’d like him to do to my boobs than use them as a pair of earmuffs.

Ah, good, he’s heading north now. I look into his deep blue eyes and remind myself why I’m here. Stuart Inman is hot. Think Matt Damon in an action movie: all blonde and ripped and gun-toting. Matt Damon, that is, with the gun-toting. Not Stuart. The only thing Stuart totes is a rather feminine Burberry man-bag.

He backs me up against his bedroom wall and I run my fingers over the taut muscles of his fabulous chest. Then I feel his lips brush against mine, his tongue darting in and . . . oh, sweet Jesus, what the . . . ?

Breathe. Close your eyes, think of England and for heaven’s sake, just breathe . . .

What in the name of all things holy was that? If it was supposed to be a kiss, then please don’t let him kiss me again. Talk about disappointing. Has he been practising his make-out skills with a bathroom sponge? I’ve kissed a few men in my life, and most of them have been far less confident, successful and drop-dead gorgeous than Stuart Inman, so how is it possible that he kisses like a half-starved pufferfish devouring a shrimp? Ugh . . . no. Just no.

I run my fingers over his abs, trying to avoid his hungry mouth. So what if he’s a crap kisser? We can work on the finer details later. The important thing right now is sex is happening – my eight-month-long drought is coming to an end and my velvet-touch, thirty-function, silicone Raunchy Rabbit can hop off into the sunset and do one.

His hands move over my body as he lowers me onto his bed. I look into his eyes, his cheeks dimpling as he smiles seductively. I should be kissing him, feeling him, touching him until we’re both sweaty and panting for more, but my stupid brain decides to torture me instead: Stuart kisses like a pufferfish. Stuart kisses like a pufferfish. Stuart kisses like a pufferfish . . . and . . . oh no, he’s nuzzling my boobs again . . . and oh my god! What the hell was that? Why are his pants stuck to my stomach? Oh shit, he has, hasn’t he? He’s shot his load. He rolls onto his back with a thump. “I’m sorry . . .” he whimpers.

I don’t know whether to laugh or cry. Where’s my Matt Damon action hero gone? Why does the fittest client I’ve ever worked with have less knob control than a horny teenager who’s just discovered Pornhub? What did I do to piss off the gods of shagging this time? Could life be any more bloody unfair? Come back, my beloved Raunchy Rabbit, I miss you already.

He turns to face me, but I don’t want to look at him. Yes, I’ll admit, I’m a coward. I can’t think of anything good to say, which, given words are my livelihood, is pretty pathetic.

“You’re just so hot. I’m sorry. I couldn’t help it.” He removes his sticky pants to reveal an appendage that could accurately be compared to a half-eaten Walnut Whip – sad, shrivelled and hollow. He crosses his legs in an attempt to hide his shame, and sadly, it doesn’t take much to hide it. How on earth didn’t I notice that before? I usually check out a guy’s bulge before I commit, don’t I? Jeez, this must be the most desperate for sex I’ve ever been in my entire life.

“It’s okay. Maybe next time?” I say, with the kind of insincere politeness a politician would be proud of.

“I can still go on. Just give me a minute,” he says with an enthusiastic tug to his manhood, and my stomach lurches. Do I want to have sex with a Matt Damon lookalike if he’s only packing a chipolata and kisses like a pufferfish sucking on a sponge?

Ten seconds later, he’s sliding his hand into my knickers and frantically rubbing away at what I’m sure he thinks is my clitoris, but of course, it isn’t. The gods of shagging wouldn’t be that merciful. I simulate a few polite moans and consider following through with a fake orgasm, but as he’s jabbing the inside of my leg with the elbow of the hand that’s futilely attempting to transform the chipolata into a frankfurter, I can’t take it anymore.

Mission abort! Mission abort!

“Okay, stop. Just stop,” I say as I squirm out of his grasp.

He removes his hand from inside my underwear and frowns at me. “What’s up?”

“Um . . . that’s not really doing much for me. Sorry.”

“What do you mean? What’s wrong with you? I always get girls off doing that.”

I feel my eyes pop. “Really?”

“Yeah, really,” he replies with an eye roll and way too much attitude. All of a sudden I have too many words, but as none of them are kind, I swallow them down and start putting my clothes back on.

Stuart tuts, gets up and pulls on a robe. I leave his apartment as fast as I can and head towards Holland Park Tube, flagging the first taxi I see on the way.

 

Author Bio:

Elizabeth Grey spent a sizable chunk of her childhood in North East England locked away in her bedroom creating characters and writing stories. Isn’t that how all writers start?

Following a five year university education that combined such wide-ranging subjects as fine art, administration, law, economics, graphic design and French, Elizabeth entered the business world as a marketing assistant before moving into operations management.

Marrying Chris in 2007, Elizabeth now has three young children and runs a small, seasonal business selling imported European children’s toys and goods – http://www.tildaandtom.co.uk. During her time as a stay-at-home mum, Elizabeth rekindled her love of writing and thinks herself lucky every day that she is now able to write full time.

When not working, Elizabeth finds herself immersed in her kids’ hobbies and has acquired an impressive knowledge of Harry Potter (thanks to the big boy), Star Wars (thanks to the little boy) and Barbie (thanks to her daughter). She loves European road-trips, binge-watching Netflix series and doing whatever she can to fight for a nicer world.

She’s been told she never loses an argument.

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

 

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Book Tour: In Wolves’ Clothing, New Release by Greg Levin


Book & Author Details:
In Wolves’ Clothing
by Greg Levin
Publication date: October 11th 2017
Genres: Adult, Psychological Thriller
Enter below to win a $25 Amazon gift card and a signed copy.

Link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/d04251232085/

Synopsis:

Zero Slade is not a bad guy—he merely plays one when saving children’s lives.

During his seven years on a team fighting child sex trafficking, Zero’s become quite good at schmoozing with pimps, getting handcuffed by cops and pretending not to care about the Lost Girls he liberates. But the dangerous sting operations are starting to take their toll on his marriage and sanity. His affinity for prescription painkillers isn’t exactly helping matters.

When the youngest girl the team has ever rescued gets abducted from a safe house in Cambodia, Zero decides to risk everything to find her. His only shot is to go rogue—and sink deeper into the bowels of the trafficking world than he’s ever sunk.

It’s the biggest mission of his life. Trouble is, it’s almost certain death.

“A truly original and enthralling novel. Levin’s blazing prose and acerbic wit capture the madness—and the humanity—of working undercover in the darkest corners.”
Radd Berrett, former Jump Team member, Operation Underground Railroad

 
Purchase:
AUTHOR BIO:

Greg Levin is an award-winning author of contemporary fiction with a dark comedic tinge. He’s gone from being read merely by immediate family and friends to being read also by extended family and Facebook acquaintances.

Greg’s novel The Exit Man was optioned by Showtime for development into a TV series and won a 2015 Independent Publisher Book Award (a.k.a., an “IPPY”). He earned a second IPPY with his next novel, Sick to Death, which Craig Clevenger (The Contortionist’s Handbook) called “a tour de force dark comedy.” Greg’s upcoming book, In Wolves’ Clothing, is due out October 2017 and is his most dangerous work yet. He wrote much of it during a ten-week-long workshop led by the great Chuck Palahniuk (author of Fight Club and lots of other books Greg sleeps with at night).

Greg resides with his wife, daughter and two cats in Austin, Texas. He is currently wanted by local authorities for refusing to say “y’all” or do the two-step.

Author links:

Guest Post: How to grow your freelance writing income


4 Simple, Actionable Steps I Took that Grew My Freelance Writing Income During My Humble Beginnings

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)

The above Bible verse is what I exactly clung to when I was in the darkest days of my old career path. My old job was suffocating, for it wasn’t really what I’m passionate about from the start. The idea of doing freelance writing as a full-time job enticed me at that time.

Indeed, my leap of faith paid dividends. I’m now a renowned, up-and-coming freelance writer whose name resonates on top of my clients’ head when thinking of who to hire.

But my success story wouldn’t be that sweet without my early struggles. When I was a freelance writing rookie, it was really unstable from a financial standpoint. It’s either feast or famine.

Are you struggling with your measly freelance writing income? Below are four simple tips I followed to grew mine, with a long-term vision.

#1: I searched for a community

“Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will repay him for his deed.” (Proverbs 19:17)

When you have zero connections, your chances of finding a client (mostly a new one) is very slim to none. The competition for both price and quality can be unforgiving in the freelance writing world.

What I did was I made a conscious effort to find a group of co-writers – people who gave me market leads and hired me for some subcontract work. The rates weren’t very generous ($5-$7 per hour on average), but it was enough to cover my basic needs, which helped restore my confidence in freelance writing.

I first searched social media platforms, particularly Facebook, using keywords “freelance writing community” and “freelance writers.” Aside from co-writer groups, I also searched for B2B writing pages that gave me marketing and financial advice.

Joining multiple freelance writing groups enabled me to have a steady source of market leads, and gave me the ability to disperse my workload to others, particularly writing newbies. Talk about giving back to society and to your finances at the same time.

#2: I started quoting on a project/engagement basis

In freelance writing, minutes are your second currency next to USD or GBP.

Quoting on an hourly basis is limiting, and it’s usually adapted by rookie freelance writers. I was stagnated by this approach for almost half a year because I was able to finish a writing assignment effectively and efficiently ahead of time.

What I did with my idle time?

It was the opportunity of my clients to ask for add-on services (e.g., free revisions, etc.). I could’ve used that time to find new clients or work on other pending engagements, but I my time was micromanaged because of the agreement.

Quote on a project basis. What I mean is to give the price that best reflects your writing skill and proficiency.

For instance, instead of accepting a $90, 3-hour work for a product review, you can say, “I can furnish an equally decent work for $100, well within your deadline.”

#3: I went for lasting client relationships, rather than casual writing encounters

“The plans of the diligent lead to profit as surely as haste leads to poverty.” (Proverbs 21:5 NIV)

When I was in the first few weeks of doing freelance work, I was very hasty. Once I received payments online, it would take just a few seconds for me to send a plain and rudimentary “Thank you” remark. There was no PR, or whatsoever.

A few months later, I changed this approach. I always made sure I made a good, lasting impression on my every client.

Instead of the empty 2-word message, I opted for this:

“Hi (insert name),

Thank you for remitting the payment on time. It was indeed a smooth and efficient transaction with you. Thank you for choosing – and trusting – my skills on this particular engagement, and I hope to serve you better in our future transactions.”

With that simple tweak, I garnered hundreds of rehire opportunities. It’s because I rendered crème de la crème writing services, without forgetting the human factor in transactions.

I also made it a habit to send them a warm message during special occasions (e.g., Christmas, Thanksgiving, New Year, etc.) and genuinely hoped for the best in their businesses.

According to Upwork, one of the more renowned freelancing sites, hirers only need to click the “Rehire a Freelancer” button and select your name from the drop-down list, to be able to get back to you. Therefore, give them ample reasons to.

#4: I invested in my ultimate client – myself

“Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men.” (Colossians 3:23)

To tell you, I reached a point where I became extremely confident of my freelance writing income, that I almost opted not to take it to the next level.

It was when I felt tedious that the initiative to grow hit me. I found the importance of learning/adding other crafts to my writing arsenal too (e.g., SEO, graphic designing, video embedding, etc.).

Enrolling into various webinars (free and paid), and taking the time to mimic other experts’ techniques was all worthwhile. For instance, I was able to put my AdWords Certification from Google to my portfolio, which enabled me to raise my rates on certain writing natures.

I also avoided overworking, for I knew that those 2-3 hours of an extra burden would mean me not working the entire day after. In was a matter of discipline and self-improvement – things that you should embody as a freelance writer too.

 

As a wrap, your freelance writing income right now may not be indicative of your true writing skill. You can feel underpaid, the majority of the time. However, don’t let that mishap deter you from genuinely improving your craft.

Let me end this discussion with a Bible quote that every idle freelance writer direly needs to read right now:

“Rise up, take courage, and do it.” (Ezra 10:4)

 

Flora Porterfield is an Atlanta native currently living in Oregon. She loves writing proses and Shakespearean sonnets. She’s also well-versed with different blogging and writing styles. As of date, much of her insights can be found at papercheap.co.uk

MA in English

Amateur Radio, Hiking, Ice Skating, Nail Art, Origami

“A true piece of writing is a dangerous thing, it can change your life.” – Tobias Wolff

 

 

 

 

 

Book Tour: Stories Untold


Stories Untold
by Leslie Wolfe
Publication date: September 23rd 2017
Genres: Adult, Contemporary
  
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Synopsis:

A GRIPPING, SUSPENSEFUL THRILLER

Buy here

Can a psychologist, still grieving the loss of her husband, save a traumatized war veteran who is planning his own death? Stories Untold explores the devastation of loss, the struggle to find meaning in life, and the enduring power of love that transcends boundaries between past and future.

They’re both strong and fearless, determined, relentless.
He’s a decorated war veteran and he wants to die.
She’s a prominent psychologist and she won’t give up on him.

When a suicidal client seeks her help, Dr. Angela Blackwell cannot turn him away, despite the fact that he isn’t seeking the kind of help she normally provides her clients. The man, who won’t fully identify himself, wants the distinguished psychologist to stand witness after his planned death in six months’ time, ensuring his wife will not be charged as an accessory or be hindered from collecting the death benefit he carefully provisioned for her. He calls himself DJ and won’t willingly share anything about his past.

As Dr. Blackwell is struggling to reconstruct her own life after the loss of her husband, she recognizes his unusual request as a subconscious cry for help and embarks on a relentless effort to guide the reluctant stranger in uncovering the trauma that has permanently altered the course of his existence. Playing a deck of cards stacked high against her and rushing against time, she has no other option but to intervene, pushing the ethical boundaries of the doctor-client relationship and refusing to give up.

An astonishing, vibrant story of human strength and frailty, of love lost and love found, the Stories Untold saga will captivate as few stories ever do, with unexpected twists and turns, leaving a lasting memory ingrained into the essence of the reader’s being.

AUTHOR BIO:

Bestselling author Leslie Wolfe is passionate about writing fiction, despite spending a significant number of years climbing the corporate ladder. Leaving the coveted world of boardrooms for the blissful peace of the Florida-based “Wolves’ den,” Leslie answers one true calling: writing.

Leslie’s novels break the mold of traditional thrillers. Fascinated by technology and psychology, Leslie brings extensive background and research in these fields that empower and add texture to a signature, multi-dimensional, engaging writing style.

Leslie released the first novel, Executive, in October 2011. It was very well received, including inquiries from Hollywood. Since then, Leslie published numerous novels and enjoyed growing success and recognition in the marketplace. Among Leslie’s most notable works, The Watson Girl (2017) was recognized for offering a unique insight into the mind of a serial killer and a rarely seen first person account of his actions, in a dramatic and intense procedural thriller.

A complete list of Leslie’s titles is available at http://wolfenovels.com/titles.

Leslie enjoys engaging with readers every day and would love to hear from you.

Become an insider: gain early access to previews of Leslie’s new novels:

Author links:
• Email: LW@WolfeNovels.com
• Follow Leslie on Twitter: @WolfeNovels
• Leslie’s Goodreads profile: http://bit.ly/LWolfeGR
• Like Leslie’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/wolfenovels
• Connect on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/wolfenovels
• Visit Leslie’s website for the latest news: www.WolfeNovels.com

Fall Update


 

Lots going on this fall.

Hi! I’ve been busy with a new part-time job since May. I’m working at the local hospital doing registration of lab and test patients in several settings. I enjoy it, but I’m missing writing, so I’ve dived back in with a freelance job writing blog posts for Personal Resilience.

I’ve just finished uploading Hoarder’s Nightmare to Createspace for paperback publication. You can find it there in a week or less.

In addition, Christmas bazaar/craft and gift show season is almost here and I’ve signed up for one with some other authors. Featured will be Hoarder’s Nightmare, Medieval Blood, Prophecy of Enchantria, and Godly Expectations in paperback. I also hope to get some text blocks made with writing and reading themes, like little signs you can put on your desk or a shelf. Also some handmade smudge sticks I put together this morning.

Join me December 2 if you’re in the area.

I haven’t had any free books on Amazon in awhile so it’s high time. Blood Moon, an anthology of stories about change, will be free on Amazon October 16-20. Here’s a link.

Finally, watch for some fun giveaways coming soon.

Cheers,

Mary Blowers

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Book Review: Shearwater


Buy Shearwater here

Shearwater, by D. S. Murphy, is a fascinating fictional look at the mythology of Ireland. Clara Clark never knew she had relatives in Ireland. She lived in America, until a tragic accident claimed the life of both of her parents while they were on their way to watch Clara perform in a high school musical production. Clara had a beautiful voice. . . .almost siren like in its beauty. When her parents died, it was discovered that her closest relative was a grandfather in Ireland that she never knew she had. So when the dust settled, she was off to Ireland!

Clara is a bit out of her element in Ireland, not being raised with these myths and legends, but she needs to learn fast who she can trust, who she can’t, and who she is. She missed her friends, but she also enjoyed the novelty of being the new girl, the girl with the accent. But when her appearance changed dramatically on her 16th birthday, people began telling her there was something special about her. Something that may not be safe.

D. S. Murphy tells a riveting tale about mythological creatures and their enemies. Shearwater is skillfully written and convincingly portrays high school life with its jealousies and complexities. I expected a children’s book about mermaids, but Shearwater is actually more like the popular vampire television shows and movies where the otherworldly creatures were integrated into human life. Readers who enjoy stories about these and other supernatural creatures will love Shearwater.

Book review: Grace Group


Buy Grace Group

In Grace Group, by Carrie Maldonado, Holly had just been diagnosed with a rare terminal illness. How can she carry on her life as a human resource director, her sometime love affair with her boyfriend, and her duties as daughter to her battling parents? Through unlikely meetings Holly discovers her life purpose and begins to throw herself into it. You’ll be surprised to see how things transpire as good battles evil. Unlike other stories I’ve read, there is good reason for every encounter as the story is woven together.

What lies beyond the end of this life? No one can really know, though there are many theories including those of various religions and belief systems. One view is presented here and scenarios are revealed which differ from normal romance stories. Nonetheless, one true religion prevails in the unexpected ending.
This book was most enjoyable to read and at the same time gave me so much to think about. As Holly grew in her awareness of the spiritual realms and of her own diagnosis, I reflected on my own life and whether it will have long range meaning. Holly learned to spend time caring for others who could offer her nothing.

How often do we perform selfless acts of kindness, random or otherwise? How do we spend the moments of our days? What really matters? It’s not what you think. If you sometimes feel that you don’t know what you’re living for, Carrie Maldonado has written a very insightful book that you will enjoy and maybe even find yourself in; Grace Group.

Book review: As Glaciers Move


 

Buy As Glaciers Move 

As Glaciers Move by Joseph Whitson is a lovely book of poetry. Whitson has attempted to outline his whole life with poetry. Various episodes appear including everything from birth to death; first love to a marriage dragging out. It would seem that one is reading Whitson’s most intimate details of his life, but in reality one is reading his emotional responses to the various events. So rather than revealing specifics, he is revealing very intimate feelings. And feelings are after all subjective.

Glaciers, as everyone knows, move so slowly you cannot see the movement to stop and stare at it. Just like life, time passes without our realization. I frequently hear people say, I can’t believe it’s September already. I can’t believe it’s been 50 years since I was in high school. By stopping and observing the moments you can possibly learn and gain more from your life.

Those who know me are astounded to find that I read, liked, and reviewed a book of poetry. I frequently find poetry to be trite, but As Glaciers Move by Joseph Whitson is a vast exception to that rule. I could tell when I read the summary that it was different and worth taking a closer look. Perhaps I move slowly too. I have had many experiences in my life, in my 58 years, and could do with more reflections on those experiences to learn from them. I often keep too busy and do not take much time for reflecting. Maybe poetry allows us to do that. Maybe I should read more poetry. But I believe that anyone who likes introspective poetry will gain a lot from reading this book. It’s certainly changed my perspective.

Book Review: It Feels Good to Feel Good


Buy “Feels Good” here and it’s FREE Sept. 19-21

It Feels Good to Feel Good by Cheryl Meyer is packed with information about toxins in our food and cosmetics. Beyond that, it gives us information on avoiding these toxins and chemicals and where to find affordable alternatives. Also, every chapter includes lists of things you can do to improve in different areas. For example, you can eat only organically grown meat and eggs and vegetables or you can eat more seeds and fewer animal products in general. There is mention of the current bee crisis which involves collapsing hives due to an unknown factor. Nobody likes bees, but do you like honey, do you like that plants are pollinated so that we can get food, do you like that trees are pollinated so that we can get oxygen? It would be a very far-reaching problem if the bees were to disappear.

Meyer goes into great detail on the fine points of various food choices that we make every day. For instance, do you eat full-fat or low-fat dairy? Farm-raised or wild caught fish? Shrimp from Asia or Mexico? Knowing the answers will make a huge difference in your health. When you eat according to the rules stated by this author, it is said that you will detox, lose weight, clear your skin, get regular, and many other benefits.

Cosmetics are a very high source of toxicity in your body. Think about it. You either apply products to your skin, spray them on, or put them on your lips which you will end up ingesting. When applying products around your eyes, they can get immediately into your bloodstream from the capillaries that are close to the surface. From there it is just a short distance to the brain. Cleaning supplies are another hotbed of chemicals. Check out the resources listed to find out what is in your products and follow the rest of the suggestions in this book. It’s very comprehensive and will help your health dramatically.

Book Review: Nourish


Buy “Nourish” here

The word “nourish” to some people means to eat food that is good for you. Stephanie Hrehirchuk has recreated the concept of nourishing to mean doing anything that is good for you. For instance, creating a new habit not to eat sweets would be nourishing. You could eat fresh fruit or whole grains instead. The ultimate goal of this book is to walk you through a detox of your body, mind, and spirit. Eating the same foods over and over, especially if they are processed or contain chemicals, is to toxify your body. Hence, you can detox and get rid of some of that kind of things out of your cells. Nourishing practices also include meditating, self-massage, herbal remedies to help you relax and heal, and preparing beautiful and healthful food for yourself and your family. Even time can be nourishing. When a person is stressed, oftentimes all they need is to get away by themselves and or/with God, to think, reflect, journal, or just do nothing.

The book “Nourish” really appealed to me because I have many major stressors in my life. In addition, it is beautifully designed with drawings and poetry.  Hrehirchuk even has a Facebook group to follow along and discuss the detoxes. I can see now that I can rework some of them so they are less stressful to me. This book will be good for any overworked or overstressed person, for instance, those who take care of others, those who work long hours with little appreciation, or even mothers of young children. There is a 21-day detox and a three-day detox outlined in Nourish, depending on how much you need to detox and how much time you have. The three-day detox could be more intense, but at the same time, it could be more manageable because it is only three days. I think it would do everyone a lot of good to take some of these principles to heart and learn how to relax and be good to themselves.