CREATIVE ICE CREAM, what's your flavor, Dan Melson's "Asina", meet Shanna Lauffey

July 1st is always


I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream!

July 1st marks National Creative Ice Cream Flavors Day, a day to sample or wonder about the odd combinations of ice cream flavors. Skip the traditional chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry ice cream when you celebrate this holiday!

(I've been in the Cleveland area half my life but I have yet to try this place. Maybe I should)

Mitchell’s Ice Cream in downtown Cleveland is known to mix up some seasonal flavors that, to some might seem funky and to others are well worth the wait.

Their salted butter sweet corn layers the flavors on your tongue. It makes you wonder why you ever bothered trying to pick the perfect cob in the first place.

And their jalapeno strawberry has just the right combo of heat and sweet.

Another great shop churning out wacky flavors is Ample Hills Creamery in New York City. With two locations plus seasonal kiosks, they are sure to satisfy some flavor-seeking tastebuds.

From the savory and smokey to the sweet and surprising, LICK Pure Cream in Seattle offers curiosity and thrill seekers a chance to test those boundaries, too. Flavors like pork-belly pecan can’t go wrong, right?


Celebrate by venturing out to your local ice creamery and testing their many concoctions, or head down to the grocery store and get creative by finding different ingredients to make your own! You can also try to find some crazy flavors yourself!

Here are just a few we came across – mashed potato ice cream, beer ice cream, olive oil ice cream, buffalo wing ice cream, goat cheese ice cream, and candied bacon ice cream. Willing to try one?

Use #CreativeIceCreamFlavorsDay to share your creations on social media.

I'm a Cookie Dough or a butter Pecan Ice Cream person. Dr. Jackie likes Double Chocolate Almond. Curious about other favorites I asked the readers and the list got really long. Here it is. Adam Joseph Stump - pistachio and butter pecan.

Ceejay Plaisted - boysenberry ripple...

Heather Lang - blue moon, - blue in superman ice cream without other flavors

Ulff Lehmann - Ben & Jerry's Cookie Dough

Edwin Downward - Treat is Dairy Queen Blizzard. Flavour is Tiger.

Kat Blalock - daiquiri ice

Carol Capicchioni - Rocky road ice cream

John Meszaros - green tea mochi ice cream. The most unusual is avocado

Ken Wigal - Vividly Vanilla from Food4Less.

SK Berit - There's a Philippine ice cream that is purple and tastes like coconut.

Joshua Griffith - ice cream and Fritos

Catherine Hensley - Cherry cordial

Nils Ödlund - I don't really do unusual ice creams,hot chocolate with a big scoop of ice cream floating in it

Joyce Hertzoff - Graeter's raspberry chocolate chunk, but we can't get it around here so I settle for Blue Bunny cherry chocolate chunk. Shanna Lauffey - Old fashioned butter brickle.

Hilary Anderson - Honey and lavendar. Maryland wild berry ice cream up there too. A gin and tonic sorbet or coffee granita also good. Weirdest I've tried was either sweet chilli and tamarind or garlic.

Michelle Long - Here in PA it’s teaberry ice cream! Tastes like PeptoBismol

Sue Langford - Chocolate covered strawberry or peach cobbler

Jamie Brola - Chocolate sodas with vanilla ice cream with nuts lol

Kathy Williams - Magnum's Double Sea Salt Caramel

Catherine Ollar Plunkett - Developing a taste for Macha ice cream Philipp Kessler - Blood orange or rose gelato.

Tim Terry - Ice cream with garlic sauce and chocolate inside it.

Paula Funk - Christmas cookie Ice Cream

Thelma Cornwell - Chocolate

Holly Glogau-Morgan - Huckleberry ice cream!

Charles Patton - Butter Pecan!!

Annette Taylor - Super free Blue Bunny cones

John Bovio It’s It. Hands down.San Francisco treat.

If you Google unusual Ice creams you'll find some that are really unusual and downright scary like Thanksgiving Dinner Ice Cream or Ghost Pepper Peppermint but one that caught my attention was:

Pink Lemonade Pop Rocks from Max & Mina’s Ice Cream

Queens, New York

For a mix of fresh-squeezed lemonade and firework-branded tingling flavor, Max & Mina’s Ice Cream has the perfect scoop. Light pink-lemonade flavor gets a jolt of fun with fizzy popping candies peppered throughout. The New York-based parlor’s crazy flavors have been featured on the Food Network’s Outrageous Foods, as well as in the New York Times, People magazine, USA Today and many other news outlets you know. If all those trusted taste buds can’t persuade you, Max & Mina’s extensive menu, with crazy flavors like Strawberry Horseradish and Lox, will.

Last week Dan Melson wrote us about his life as a writer. This week he presents us with a character!

1.Go ahead and introduce yourself.

My name is Asina di Bernard, or following the customs of my husband’s family, Asina Bernard.

2.Tell us where and when were you born.

I was born in Yonskarr’s Hold on the Karnel Peninsula of Hashiboor Continent, Calmena approximately two prime forty-two Imperial years ago in terms of personal duration. That’s four sixty-fours, three eights and six in local reckoning.

3. How would you describe yourself?

My husband describes me as naturally short and petite. Two fifths twenty-one, weight about fifty-two prime, hair about half a shade on the sandy brown side of blonde, blue eyes.

Even in the circumstances of my youth, I was shorter than most. But my physical characteristics change when I want them to. The most important thing about my husband and I is that we are married.

The second most important thing is that I am a Second Order Guardian, trained on Earth after I was rescued from the circumstances of my birth, and nothing can ever take that from me.

The third most important thing is that I intend to liberate my homeworld from the fractal demons and the agaani so that nobody will ever again have to endure what I almost couldn’t.

4. Tell us about where you grew up.

An agaani hold, barely keeping the fractal demons at bay. Primitive, dirty, and brutal. Starvation was an omnipresent threat. The fractal demons could descend upon us at any moment, and the accommodations we made to forestall that were soul-crushing.

I was a slave, but in reality, we were all slaves; slaves to the situation and to the needs of the community. Men were expendable workers or soldiers, women were child-bearing machines who were also responsible for some work or some training of the warrior boys.

My parents died when I was young, I did what work I could until my woman’s courses started to flow. Thereafter, I still did what work I could but my primary function was childbearing.

5. How old are you?

I am not certain, and Yonskarr certainly kept no records of the slave children. We think I was six eights and two or three in local reckoning when I was rescued, but that’s simply a best guess based upon my memories. In Imperial terms, about twenty-eight. In Earth terms, probably nineteen or twenty. That was two prime fourteen years ago standard Imperial years personal duration. I’ve lived roughly 113 Earth years in all.

6. Did you have a happy childhood? Why/why not? No, I did not. My parents died when I was young, and even before that, I was a slave working the fields and anything else the shagra-ma needed us to. As soon as I became fertile, repeated rapes were a fact of life for me.

I’d had a miscarriage before my daughter, and another after. My daughter tested as agaani, which boosted my slave caste to shagra-my and made me a caregiver for children, but it also meant I was raped even more often because they knew my children could be warriors or mothers of warriors. I would not have been permitted to see my daughter after her she achieved the age of two eights – they would have taken her from me for training. I was battered, malnourished, and fading. I had accepted that I would probably soon die as my parents had.

Only the threat to my daughter Tellea posed by the fall of Yonskarr’s keep forced me to protect her.

7. Past/ present relationships? How did they affect you?

Basically every male shagra-no and some of the shagra-ma in Yonskarr’s keep treated me like a sexual plaything. It wasn’t something they really chose; it was required of them by the situation.

When I was rescued, the Imperial charity that sponsored me paid for a series of healing sessions, both body and mind. The body was much easier. For the mind, I was offered a choice, and I chose to want a normal life. I wasn’t going to let my experiences on Calmena keep me from being happy, keep me from being a normal wife and mother as well as anything else I wanted.

Their healer, a wonderful man named Jelaar, healed my mental and spiritual pain, and helped me put it in perspective against the fact that those people and that situation no longer had any power over me. I occasionally dated although I wasn’t sexually active while I was being trained on Earth – I knew who I really wanted. Unfortunately, the characteristics of survival I’d absorbed on Calmena meant I was damaging my daughter Tellea and her ability to adjust to Imperial society, so I gave her up for adoption to a clan family associated with the Imperial military on Earth, although we have maintained a relationship since then. When I was offered a position on Calmena helping them learn what they needed to know, I encountered Joe almost immediately upon arrival. We were married soon after and have been married two prime twelve years, or in Earth duration, a little over 92 years.

8. What do you value above all else in life?

My husband and four children. Next to that, who I have become. I have led nations of Calmena and their armies. I have helped push back the fractal demons away from most of Calmena. I have learned things no Calmenan would have dreamed when I was born, and I will continue to grow in the years to come.

9. What are you obsessed with?

Before I am killed, this I vow: I will eliminate every single agaani hold and eradicate every single fractal demon of any caste from the face of Calmena.

10.How do your beliefs make life better for yourself and the people you care about?

The Empire doesn’t just talk about people being as important as they make themselves; they live it. One day Calmena will be an Imperial planet, where the people are free to become as much as they care to work for.

11. Biggest fear?

That the rulers of the Empire have miscalculated and the fractal demons will win the next war and all of humanity will be plunged into a never-ending night of slavery and torture.

12. What line will you never cross?

With the stakes as high as they are, I haven’t encountered anything that I can promise I will never do. But I will never harm another human more than there is need for.

13. What is the best thing that ever happened to you? The worst?

My husband was the best. From the moment he helped rescue me, beaten, battered, and slowly dying, I knew I wanted to be worthy of him. The second best is that nothing even close to what I endured will ever happen to me again.

14. Most embarrassing thing that ever happened to you?

The day I accidentally let slip to my mother-in-law that I’d been shagra-my, and discovered she actually knew what it meant. Mrs. Bernard has definite opinions. Joe had to intervene with an ultimatum to his mother, and if I hadn’t already given her a grandson, even that might not have been enough.

15. Biggest secret?

My husband and I have been in mental rapport for most of two prime since he went operant; I’d be dismayed if there were anything either of us hasn’t discovered about the other.

16. What is the one word you would use to define yourself?

Improving. I am better than I used to be, and I will be better still sixty years from now.

17. What is your current goal?

My husband and I are teaching the Calmenans about marine diesel engines. I have a little bit more developmental work to sponsor in the petroleum and aluminum industries, then we are going to teach our people to fly.

Our latest Author is Shanna Lauffey. Hi Shanna!

What made you want to be a writer?

Like probably all writers, I read a lot and I kept seeing book descriptions and imagining what the story would be like, only to find it was different and wish I could read the story I imagined instead. Eventually I decided to write them.

When is the release of your next novel? Name genre or if it’s part of a series. If your book is part of a series tell the readers about the others that are out for sale.

I've just released Remember the Future, episode nine of The Chronicles of the Harekaiian, also released in paperback as The Time Shifters series. It's technically a serial, starting with the book, Time Shifters. It's a time travel story about a race of people who can shift through time at will, but there are strict parameters. For example, they can't go beyond their own lifetime, either direction. The tenth and final episode, The Book of Revelations, will be released in November 2019.

How important is it to read books when you want to be an author?

Essential! I can't imagine anyone even wanting to be a writer without being an avid reader.

Do you remember the first book you read?

On my own? Serendipity by Stephen Cosgrove.

What book are you reading now?

I've been reading a good multi-author anthology called WitchLit. It's a collection of Fantasy stories with a magical aspect written in support of Books for Africa, so a good cause. It has some very well-written stories in it!

How did you come up with the idea for the book or series, especially the title?

Cliché as it may be, in a dream. I basically dreamed the first scene of the series, woke up and started writing it down, anxious to see what happened next!

Which character do you identify with most in your novel?

Akalya, definitely. We have a similar practical approach to a crisis.

How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

As the setting is contemporary, I put a lot of realistic detail into the setting. For example, whatever city my characters are in at the moment, I look on Google Earth to see what's on that street or look up menus for restaurants they go to and find actual hotels, whatever is needed for the scene. I don't model characters after real people at all.

To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?

Only virtually.

Tell us how the atmosphere needs to be for you to be able to write. Example, music on or quiet etc.

I prefer quiet and if I can manage it, undisturbed. I can only write at home, in my familiar surroundings.

What is one goody you must have at your desk when you’re writing?

Honestly? I could starve to death writing. I get involved and food and drink are distractions.

Which part of the publishing process do you detest most?

The same as everybody else, marketing!

What is the worst thing you’ve had to overcome before publishing your novel? IF it’s too personal just make a generalized statement if you can.

Aversion to some of what goes on online. I try to keep my head down and avoid the drama


When you need some extra encouragement who do you turn to?

I've always been self-reliant, one of the things Akalya and I have in common.

How do you market your book?

Badly so far. I post about new releases on my blog, Facebook and Twitter, but after that I'm stumped.

Have readers ever contacted you? If so, tell us the best thing they’ve said to you.

Yes! I have to admit, that's a real boost when someone cares enough about my characters to contact me. The sweetest comment I've ever had was about a cat in the book. I don't want to give spoilers, but it was an expression of hope for how something would turn out. The trickiest one was someone from Chicago telling me that there was no way I could get a hotel room in that city for the cost I wrote. I didn't want to say to her that she was wrong and end up in an argument. Instead I sent her a link to the budget hotel I used in my virtual travels and explained how I used real places, including the menu of the restaurant downstairs from that hotel. It came out fine.

Who do you trust to read your finished books before publication?

I got involved in an author collective and one of the people is a professional editor.

Tell us all about your very first book signing. Take us there with your description of people, place, food, décor etc.

I haven't gone down this path. I'm a shy person and putting myself out there is an uphill battle for me.

Is there a message you’d like to send through your book?

I never set out to infuse a message into the story. Now that I've determined Akalya's character arc for the final episode, I see a strong message about giving yourself credit for your better nature.

If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?

An unknown actress. Part of Akayla's nature is to stay unnoticed in a crowd. I don't think a celebrity actress could identify with that.

Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?

Neil Gaiman. He's the most incredible human being. I'm always amazed when I read one of his speeches or interviews.

Do you have any hobbies?

I like to travel and I like to embroider.

What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?

I'm not much of a television person, but I did keep up with Game of Thrones. As for films, I like comedy and Fantasy.

Favorite foods

Mexican is always my favorite, but I eat fairly simply most of the time. Fruits, almonds, chocolate, all the food groups.

What’s your sign, lucky number.

I''m a Gemini, lucky number 11.

What’s your favorite color.

Bottle green.

What music do you hear in your latest book.

I don't really hear music when I read or write, but if a television series was made of the series, the ideal backgroud music would be Deine Lakaien.

Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?

Die. Or make take up confectionary making.

You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?

Finishing Episode Ten.

What do you want written on your head stone?

Gone on my next adventure.

Are there any mistakes you made with your first book?

Oh yes. My very first book, She-Wülf, is going to get completely re-written before it gets re-released. I had what I still think was a good idea, but I rushed to get it out instead of developing it to its best potential.

What kind of advice can you give to other either aspiring authors?

There's no hurry. Write it and put it aside, then read it with fresh eyes a month later. Conversely, don't get caught up in constant self-editing so much that you never finish writing it.

Tell us how we may get a copy of your book. (Kindle, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, paperback etc.)

The first nine episodes are available in e-book and audiobook on Amazon as well as paperback for the first five episodes.

They are also available in all e-book forms on Smashwords and all their affiliates, including Barnes & Noble.

Time Shifters is permanently FREE on Smashwords.

Social media links and websites?



My blogsite

So what's up with me?

Here's a new cover teaser.

Work continues on Book 5 for Children of Stone The Lake of Memory

Last but not least, I'm fine tuning of "Miss Hattie and the Hoppers" a spinoff short featuring an unlikely time-hopping pair who met back in the days of Children of Stone (and were bitter enemies) until a certain event--- They have landed in 1875 in East Tennessee looking for crystal fuel and a certain old maid.

The rest of you have been busy too!

Small Medium: Well Done Kindle Edition

by Andrew Seiple (Author), Amelia Parris (Illustrator), Beth Lyons (Editor) 6-3-19

Places of Poetry Kindle Edition by A. F. Stewart (Author) 6-7-19

Master of the Naughty Genie (Naughty Genie's Harem Delight 20) Kindle Edition

by Reed James (Author) 6-9-19

The Loch Ness Files (UA CLASSIFIED Book 3) Kindle Edition by Derek Borne 6-11-19

Kickin' It (Red Card Book 2) Kindle Edition

by Rachel Van Dyken (Author) 6-11-19

The Wealth Factor Workbook [Print Replica] Kindle Edition

by Amanda Rose 6-12-19

Paroled from Heaven (Paranormal Detectives Series Book 8) Kindle Edition

by Lily Luchesi 6-14-19

Ruined Between the Sheets: An Anthology of Dystopian Stories that Get to the Point Kindle Edition

by L.A. Boruff (Author), R.M. Walker (Author), K.A Knight & Erin O'Kane (Author), Grace White (Author), Rhiannon Lee (Author), Katie May (Author), Loxley Savage (Author), Dia Cole (Author), Joelle Greene (Author), TL Reeve (Author), Michele Ryan (Author), Chris "C.A." Storm (Author), Nikki Landis (Author), Lilly Griffin (Author), AJ Sinclair (Author), Rae Tina (Author)


Blood Gods: Rebel Vampires Standalone Novella (Rebel Legends Book 1) Kindle Edition

by Rosemary A Johns (Author) 6-20-19

Heart of the Valkyrie Kindle Edition

by Tom Fallwell (Author) 6-22-19

Watcher's Reckoning: Book 2 - The Watcher and the Sentinel Series Kindle Edition Yvette Bostic 6-25-19

Speak of the Devil (The Broken Halos series Book 2) Kindle Edition

by Maya Daniels 6-26-19

In A Heart Beat Kindle Edition

by C.A. King (Author) 7-1-19

Summernight (Bridge of Legends) Hardcover

by Sarah K. L. Wilson 7-1-19

That's all for now. See you on July 8 when I think we'll be talking blueberries!