Monthly Archives: July 2007

Blogging today at “It’s Not Chick Porn”

Hey all — in a departure from my usual Thursday, Bam kindly asked to guest blog…check it out!

What’s going on with me Wednesday…

And here I thought that I was getting everything back on track…sigh.  The day job is hellacious right now, just like last week, so any creativity I have is basically completely zapped long before I get home.  Alas, that’s what you get working for the DoD, I guess.  Anyway, the exercises we’re going through right now on base should be done this week, so I hope to resume my regularly scheduled programming this weekend!!

Talk atcha soon…

TABT…Killing Me Softly by Jenna Mills

When investigative reporter Savannah Trahan disappeared and was presumed dead, police immediately arrested Cain Robichaud, Savannah’s boyfriend and a New Orleans police officer.  Without sufficient evidence to convict him, however, Cain was released—free to retreat to the bayou, with only his aching memories of a ruined career and Savannah.  Now, after eighteen months, Savannah Trahan no longer exists.  There’s only one person who can track down her would-be murderer.  And every time she edges closer to the truth, someone else turns up dead.

Wow, what a great book!  I’ll admit, I figured out the twist to this story fairy early on.  I couldn’t pinpoint why, but it was just there.  But figuring it out didn’t detract from my enjoyment one little bit!  Cain and Renee are tortured characters, with good reason.  This isn’t a story about people angsting for no good reason, but rather two souls who are lost and long to come home.  This story is not only a great romantic suspense, but a wracking emotional journey that rings true with each word.  I highly recommend this one, and will be picking up more of Mills’ backlist.

M/M Monday…Mad Men

So hubby and I were cruising stations on Friday evening, and came across Mad Men on AMC.  Now I’ve been seeing the previews for it for the last month or so, and thought it looked pretty good, and hubby was so inclined, so we settled in to watch.

Let me say up front, this is a show I could easily get addicted to (if the second & third installments are as good as the first).  The writing is sharp and dryly funny, with characters I could really get to care about.  In fact, I adored the lead, Jon Hamm even though that takes a sharp turn at the very end of “Smoke Gets in Your Eyes” (the first episode).  I don’t want to spoil anything for those of you who haven’t seen it, but the writers/directors/producers did an excellent job of making us care about him before we take that “oh hell no, he did NOT” lurch.  Hell, I’m probably spoiling it a bit anyway, but damn, I didn’t see it coming until about 30 seconds before it did.

Anyway, if you want to watch a show that’s truly unique, with excellent character portrayals and screenwriting, then dial this one up as soon as you can!!

Thursday Thirteen…13 Post Conference Notes…

There are many things I love/hate about the week after any conference, but especially RWA Nationals.  And with out further ado, here we go!

1.  I LOVE coming home…as much as I adore hanging out with my writing sisters, sleeping in my own bed (with my hubby *g*) and logging in on my “real” computer, rather than the laptop, is pure joy.

2.  I HATE coming back to work.  Not that the day job is hideous or anything, actually, it’s pretty damned interesting.  But after something like Nationals, I wanna sit down in my PJs with my coffee and cigar and write my ass off.  Hard to do when you’re dragging ass home for said week.

3.  I LOVE the look of my TBR shelf after I unpack…all those loads of great books just waiting for me to dive in!

4.  I LOVE putting my party shoes back on the shelf, knowing that I won’t have to look at them for another year!  (They look great, but hurt like a mo-fo)

5.  I HATE unpacking… As much as I adore putting the party shoes back up, unpacking all that stuff and putting it in its rightful place takes freakin’ forever

6.  I LOVE the feeling of sisterhood I have when I’m at Nationals.  Everyone there “gets” me (which is very scary when you actually think about it), and we’re all in the same boat together (those little voices in our heads), whether we’re published with a gazillion books, or whether we’re hard at work on our first manuscript.

7.  I HATE the drive from Oklahoma City.  Keep in mind that every time I travel, I have to drive 90 minutes just to get to the freakin’ airport!  This time I drove all the way to Dallas with my friends, so it seemed much shorter than it actually was, but the drive down to pick up Rinda and Brooke and then the drive back home after dropping them off was hellaciously looooong.

8.  Did I mention I hate coming back to work? *G*!!  197 e-mail messages.  I shit you not.  Never mind the stuff that piled up at home.  Sigh.

9.  I LOVE the look of “OMG, you brought me my favorite author” when I bring the prezzies I bought into the office.  This year was particularly memorable because one of the ladies had asked for only one thing…a signed Nora book, which I got her.  Her expression was priceless and something I’ll always treasure.

10.  I LOVE sleeping late the Monday after the conference.  I traditionally take it off just to get my shit together and generally veg.  Having hubby kiss me before he heads out the door and then snuggling deeper under the covers for another hour of sleep is pure bliss.

11.  I LOVE playing with the promo items I picked up in the Goody room.  It’s always interesting to see what I grabbed, especially now that I’m being much more selective and not hoovering everything I see *g*.

12.  I LOVE knowing that now I can put faces to names on various e-mail loops.  Because I live so far in the writing hinterlands (I’m the only novelist in town, that I know of), online loops and blogs are the way I keep in touch with the world, be it through craft information or through review sites.

13.  I’m CONFUSED by all the hubbub regarding having readers and bloggers at Nationals.  It’s not like we let our hair down at these things (well, except for at the parties)…we’re there do professional things, and having non-RWAers there doesn’t impact that in the slightest, at least IMO. 

What’s Going on with Me Wednesday

I’m freakin’ exhausted, that’s what’s going on!  LOL.  I came back from Dallas all pumped to write, but found myself bogged down in the day job and getting home whipped.  It’s getting better today, so I’m actually hoping to sit down and write, because, dammit, I had multiple nibbles (read:  requests) at the conference and I need to get off my ass and turn those requests into opportunity.

I’ll be back to word count updates next week, promise!!!

TABT…Cast in Shadow by Michelle Sagara

Seven years ago Kaylin fled the crime-riddled streets of Nightshade, knowing that something was after her. Children were being murdered — and all had the same odd markings that mysteriously appeared on her own skin.… Since then, she’s learned to read, she’s learned to fight and she’s become one of the vaunted Hawks who patrol and police the City of Elantra. Alongside the winged Aerians and the immortal Barrani, she’s made a place for herself, far from the mean streets of her birth.  But children are once again dying, and a dark and familiar pattern is emerging. Kaylin is ordered back into Nightshade with a partner she knows she can’t trust, a Dragon lord for a companion and a device to contain her powers — powers that no other human has. Her task is simple — find the killer, stop the murders…and survive the attentions of those who claim to be her allies!

I’ll be honest, it was a bit hard for me to get into this book, because the world building in the first few chapters was a bit overwhelming.  But I applied my “three chapter” rule, and by the time I got there, I was totally sucked in.  Kaylin is a very compelling character, as is Severn, who you couldn’t help rooting for, even if you knew he’d done something *really* bad to get on Kaylin’s shit list.  To me this was a coming-of-age story (NOT a romance) that happens to be a fantasy.  You’ll root for Kaylin, wonder about her past and the strange tattoos on her arms, and worry at the mystery of Severn like a dog over a bone.  If you’re a fantasy fan (who likes strong heroines—even if they’re not always right), then this one is definitely a must read for you.

Back home…yeah!

I’m happy to announce we made it home accident free, which was a minor miracle considering the storage compartment of my Explorer was floor-to-ceiling with luggage and books!  Slept 11 hours last night, which kinda surprised me because I got plenty of sleep at the Con…I think I was just body tired, y’know?

So now I’m catching up on all of my e-mails and getting my Editorial Director responsibilities for Liquid Silver taken care of, in addition to doing piles of laundry.

I pulled out all of the books I either bought or got a the publisher-sponsored signings, and I only brought home 29 for me!  Considering I came home with almost 60 last year, I consider that to be a HUGE show of restraint on my part *g*.

Tonight I’ll probably rework the end of View before I send it to Skully so she can tell me whether it’s reasonably ready to send to Nocturne (one of my requests at the Con), and get ready to go back to the day job.  While I truly do find my primary source of employment enjoyable, when I come back from a Con I always want to hunker down and write, rather than strap into pantyhose and heels, y’know?

Tomorrow I’ll go back to our regularly scheduled programming, K?

Dallas, Day Four…

Howdy doody!!  Had yet another exhausting but productive day today.  I went to assorted publisher-sponsored booksignings (and scored a FREE Kelley Armstrong hardback…SCORE!!), and had a signing of my own (along with my publicist sisters PC Cast, Jana Oliver and Nalini Singh) in Frisco, which is about 35 minutes away.  Didn’t sell any books (but didn’t expect to), but handed out about a zillion bookmarks.  The Barnes and Noble decided to keep my books to sell on consignment, and said they’d order more direct from the distributor if they sold well, so fingers crossed!

I’m going to head down to catch the “Setting as Metaphor” class and then get ready to go root for my crit bud Jasmine Haynes (aka Jennifer Skully)…she’s up for a RITA in the Novella category.

Dallas, Day Three…

Hey all!!  Had a GREAT day, but was running pretty much non-stop so didn’t have time to blog until now… 

Let’s see…I got bunches of free books, some for me and some for the chicadees at work and my next door neighbor Lucy (who’s eighty-something and LOOOOVES the spicy stuff *g*).  I also met with Virgin Books.  I was planning on pitching View to a Kill to them, knowing that they also pubbed other stuff besides erotic romance, but that’s what he’s interested in.  Luckily, I’d brainstormed an idea prior to the meeting and pitched that concept…which the editor requested!  It was tres cool.

I met with my publicity team for lunch, working up ideas for promoing my books now that I’ve got some extra time on my hands, which was fabulous and really got me pumped to not only get my name out there but get a wad of writing done.

Tonight I went to the Berkley and Harlequin parties with my fab crit partner Jennifer Skully.  What a BLAST!  I got to meet a ton of industry professionals and reconnect with a bunch of folks I hadn’t seen since last year.  One thing I can say, after all of this, is that by NOT trying to pitch things, I got two requests for the same book in the space of about 90 minutes, which was the ultimate rush for a writer.  Now, being the pragmatist that I am, we’ll see how it goes *g*.

Tomorrow I’m signing with a bunch of other authors in Frisco, and will pop on afterwards to tell you how it went!