Tuesday, May 31, 2005


Now that I've sold my third book, here's the reality: I will now head to town to dry my clothes as I still haven't ordered the heating thing for my dryer. Um...been writing. I need to pay bills. Grocery shop. Necessity shop. Take back a lawnmower that didn't come with all the necessities. I mean, REALLY! How hard is it to remember the nuts and bolts? Grrrrrrrrrrrrrr
I need to get the tag for my vehicle. Look at the business cards. Oh...and not beat my cranky chickens. They are on a tangent today, folks.

Mebbe, just mebbe, I'll have time to come back home and work on my Anthology piece. Mebbe not.

Monday, May 30, 2005


My publisher, Whiskey Creek Press, has offered me a contract for my third book, a Paranormal Romance, titled "The Portrait." I am so excited! I'm on that adrenaline high that will last for quite awhile. So sleep tonight? Heh. Not bloodly likely.
I want to WRITE. Lots. More. Now. LMAO
After I share my news with all the people in my little world. Then I will get back to the business of finishing my anthology piece.

We went over to a friend's house and BBQ'd. Good stuff. Thanks M and B! It's been a lovely holiday. I was having a "good" writing day and brought a little notebook with me. I sequestered myself in her computer room and wrote the ending to my piece. Now, I must transcribe-probably tomorrow.
Hope you're Memorial Day has been a good one.
Sorry about the previous post. Blogger was having a day, itself. I didn't even notice it totally left off my last sentence or two. I think I've fixed it.

I thought Aquaman was hot

Ahhhhhh, the days of the Justice League. The Halls of Justice sparkled on my television set back in the days of my youth. I would sit in front of the television every Saturday morning and absorb the episode. Batman was okay. Superman had that cool lock of hair over his forehead. But Aquaman? Oh my. *grins*
I wanted to BE Wonder Woman. Those boots. That hair. That lasso.
I tolerated those blue twins. Zan and Nan? Jan? Something of the sort.
And then you had the diametrical team. Bad, evil villains intent on ruling the world.

It was its own little microcosm. I wasn't old enough to wonder what was going on with Superman and Wonder Woman. They did pair up a LOT though. Aquaman worked with his sea creatures. Batman did his thing.

What brought this up? Dish TV. I was scrolling for something to watch last evening when it popped across Cartoon Network, I believe. And I felt that rush. That exhilirating feeling of being young again. For just a moment, I was excited about the cartoon prospects. Worries of bills, books, and life in general faded away. I could see the Halls of Justice. I could see Aquaman using those neat, little circles coming from his head to talk to the sea animals. And I loved it.

Super heroes have made a major comeback of late. I believe we, as a society, are searching for heroes in our world. Hollywood is trying to fill the need with celluloid ones. The Fantastic Four is going to be on the big screen soon. I had a "thing" for Thing. I think it was the heart of gold behind the brick wall. He could be normal for so long, and then he would lapse back into his former shape. I liked Wolverine long before Hugh Jackman filled out those claws so well.

It's nice to see heroes up on the big screen fighting for our rights. It's excellent when they have super powers which fascinate the masses. But on this Memorial Day, I'll be remembering our people who have fought for this country and who are fighting still. They are our heroes. With nothing more than combat gear, a gun, and their wits, they are shielding us all from the villains out there. And they're protecting our life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
They may not have the invisible jet, millions of gadgets, or have super powers. But they are the real heroes. And they have my gratitude and prayers.

Sunday, May 29, 2005

Ye scurvy blogger bastards

I love my little blogging friends. I'm less fond of having to deal with stupid blogging issues.

Thanks again to everyone who has e-mailed me and informed me of the wonderful jacked-up world of my comment section.
I think I've fixed it. *fingers crossed*
Michelle W.--rock on, woman.
Jill and Suzanne--thanks for the e-mails. I think I've fixed it. Um...really.


Yesterday was a rather strange day. One of our friends got a wild hair and called to see if we wanted to have one, too. Of course we did. That's how we ended up spending the day with her and her brood at Bell's Amusement Park in Tulsa. We finished that up with a late dinner at Casa Bonita.
I'd never been to Bell's. My plan for the day was renovation and cleaning. What fun! Friday we were simply vegetables. Though I did type 3400 words on my Anthology piece. YAY! It's about halfway through. That rather rocked.
Anyway...the phone call around eleven yesterday afternoon put a halt to that. And away we went. It was a great time! We spent twelve hours out of the house. We didn't get home until midnight. And we were ATE-UP! Heh. All well worth it. And then some.
Kids rode the roller coaster, log ride, and all the rides that scare the hell out of me. You know, I used to be so adventurous. Back in the day. Now I need a dramamine. But I did ride the Himalayan. It's that cool, little ride that plays music at a deafening decibel while whipping your ass around in a circle at the speed of light. Bliss. Utter bliss. I was screaming my little head off and acting a fool. Once again...bliss. Utter bliss. My throat's a little sore, but it's a small price.

We're back at it today. The bathroom needs serious renovating help. I'm taking a small break to check the ol' computer and answer e-mails and such. I plan on working on my anthology piece a little later.
It's overcast today. Check out my weather pixie. Isn't she cute? Man, she livens up my little blogging notebook. Have a good weekend and great holiday. I don't know if I'll be on tomorrow or not. Mebbe just to work on my writing, unless the blogging bug bites.

Friday, May 27, 2005


Thank you to everyone who e-mailed me and informed me my damn comments weren't working!
I thought I was unloved. :(
Feeling sorry for myself. Scuffing my toe in the dirt.

Honestly, I don't know WHAT in the heck happened, but I think I've fixed it. And NO, it wasn't on purpose. Blogger. Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

I enabled the pop-up window for comments. I hope all is well again. I tried to open it and could. Thanks for letting me know and stopping by!


Writing update

I've written 2300 words on my anthology story. It's looking up. It only needs to be 8000 words or less. It's all good. *grins*

We're being vegetables today. Movies, junk food, and PS2. Tomorrow is more writing and renovations. Joy and rapture. It's supposed to rain all dang weekend. It's cooler, though, and we need the rain. So, rock on.

And a question from the Twisted Ambiance group. Thanks Kira!

So, my question to all of you is....if given the opportunity, what question would you ask of the Universe?
Hoffa? Capone? Presley? Matters of deep philosophical magnitude? Anything.


Loose ends

I mailed off a LOAD of agent queries this morning. I am hoping to hook a good one. *grins* Man, the local post office was SO happy to see me.
I looked at business cards, and the guy there will be putting together some looks for me. I need to check back in Tuesday with my final decision. I'm working on a short story for an anthology. I also need to finish my sampler. Good thing I love words.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

No tree is safe

I have cost several trees their lives today. I'm still in the big middle of printing and putting together. I love when agents ask for at least a chapter or three. It gives me hope they'll read my words. If this isn't true, please don't rain on my parade.
I've cleaned off approximately half of my desk. It had to be done. And you know what? A lot of it was printouts. I am one print-happy heifer. I like that hard copy. *grins*

I was sent this quite awhile ago, but I love it. And right now it seems applicable. I don't know the original author, but I can relate to all of it.

Expressions for Women on High Stress Days:

You-off my planet
Errors have been made. Others will be blamed.
And your crybaby whiny-assed opinion would be...?
Allow me to introduce my selves.
Sarcasm is just one more service I offer.
I can't remember if I'm the good twin or the evil one.
You say I'm a bitch like it's a bad thing.
Chaos, panic, and disorder-my work here is done.
Is it time for your medication or mine?
How do I set a laser printer to stun?
I'm not tense, just terribly, terribly alert.



I'm booked. Since self-lighting a fire under my ass (no one else will), I decided I needed to send queries/chapters off to agents for my Suspense. I also need to finish a sampler for the AuthorsUnlimited site. Thankfully I sent off most of my reviews the day before yesterday, so that's something I don't have to do today.
I've amassed a list of agents and their requirements. And now is the fun part of printing and mailing. I picked up a new ink cartridge. heh I'll need it.

Personal note: Why is it when chickens are home on summer vacation, they want to eat every thing which isn't nailed down, and some that are? They're bottomless to begin with, but MY GOD!, it keeps getting worse. They literally want dessert after EVERY MEAL. I've nipped that one in the bud. I love the eyerolls. Really, I do. And then there's the visits. You know, when something isn't working/they're fighting/I play mediator/a cloud passes in front of the sun, I must be bothered. If fifteen minutes passes without interruption, it's like a whistle goes off that only children can hear. Because here one comes.
It's still May.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005


Kim and Sara: I've sent the gifts. YAY! The candle smells yummy. *grinning*

I've run all over God's creation today. And I am TIRED! Ran into a girl/woman I've known since she was a freshman in high school. She graduated from college in 1996. Isn't it amazing how the years just fall away?

Received an e-mail from a wonderful woman who puts a magazine together here in Oklahoma. It's called "She's OK". Hopefully she'll do an article over my writing and books and such. And if she does, I'm going to do my darndest to NOT have a picture in there. heh

All in all, not a bad day. Picked up a Jude Devereaux "Twin" book from Goodwill. I'm already halfway through with it. Actually had a chance to read while the chickens played at McDonald's.

Hope you're evening is lovely.


Morning sunshine

I awoke at the buttcrack of dawn today because there was a grocery store in town with hellacious sales going on. Six pack coke/diet coke/dr. peper/etc. for $1. Brisket for $1 a pound. And that place was HOPPING at six o'clock this morning. Everybody's gearing up for Memorial day, I suppose.
Bravejournal is doing some wonky stuff. I can't access Kara's or Olga's blog. And the "Writeminded" gals have moved. I must tweak my template.

Supposed to have a good chance it'll rain today. I have errands to run. LOTS of them. Kim and Sara, I'm sending it today! I haven't had my vehicle, so that was the delay. But I'm all over it. I'll email y'all after I've sent the stuff. *grins*
I don't see this being a particularly good writing day. I need to pick up another black ink cartridge (Why in the blazes do they cost so much? $30. For INK! Let's put this in perspective, shall we? ACK!) And I'll be sending out queries, sample chapters, and such.

I was bemoaning the state of my desk to my best friend yesterday. She looks over at me and says, "But you know where everything is, right?" That would be a negatory. I can vaguely make out the keyboard. The mouse is visible. And hey! What else do I need?
"Alex, the answer is: WHAT IS ORGANIZATION?"
Oh help me.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Deep thoughts

Okay. Not so deep. But plenty of them.

I've sent out copies of my book to be reviewed. Now I'm not a thin-skinned person by any means, but this is nerve-wracking. Seriously. I'm not going to break into a Sally Fields speech if the reviews are good, but it would be nice. *grinning*
I'm working on the erotica. I WILL finish this one before I start another one. The other one is simply clawing to break free. It's all I can do sometimes to be strong and monogamous. Look for the post in the future: Writing Monogamously. Promises to be all kinds of fun.

I've also let my mainstream fiction (Suspense) slide to the wayside. I was reminded by a friend, thanks Kel!, and I'm going to be submitting it to agents. I love the story. But, as we all know, this stuff doesn't happen overnight. I put it on the backburner to focus on the romance I knew I could sell.
But it bothers me. I belive it to be a solid story. Humorous. Suspenseful. Heavy on the sarcasm. In other words...Snarky Suspense. Now who wouldn't want to buy that? *laughing*
So I will probably only tap out a thousand words or so on my erotica and put the rest of my efforts into querying agents and such.

The erotica is right around 20,000. I believe I'll top out somewhere around 50,000. Once again, it's not the story, it's the TIME. I need to FOCUS. FOCUS. FOCUS.
Now what was I saying?

Ass-deep in reviews

Quite the visual, eh? *laughing*

I'm such a bad parent. I'm letting TV babysit my children while I feverishly send out reviews for my first book. The sounds of the cartoon "Recess" are filtering back here.

I actually did write last night. Only about 1200 words or so. I fell short of the 2000 goal, but I DID write. Yay!
I have LISTS of review sites to sort through and apply to. And that means I have to *gasp* catalog what I have going on. I don't know where my organizational skills have wandered off to. Perhaps they're on my desk AKA the pit. Um...perhaps not.

I need to head into town tomorrow and mail some stuff. Then I need to look at business cards. Pick up some groceries for Memorial Day. Oh, and about a billion other things. Give or take.
It never fails to amaze me how I lose track of days when the chickens are out of school. And here I was, thinking it was Wednesday!

Monday, May 23, 2005

I'm it!

I don't know HOW this happened. I'm simply sitting here. Minding my own business. When WHAM! Demented Michelle puts the whammy on me. Oh, she is so not right.
Okay. Here goes:

Total number of books: Used to be in the thousands. The losing them part of the equation is rather painful, and I'm not sharing the details. Now I might have a couple of hundred.

Last books I bought: I think it was the "Key" series by Nora Roberts. I also picked up a couple of "Blaze" books in the bargain bin. Sidenote: I loathed both of them.

On the "to buy" list: More JD Robb books. Any and all of them. Marjorie Liu-I think it's called "Tiger Eyes." Harry Potter-Here I come. I may see about investing some money in a few books by the authors' blogs I read. I'm really looking forward to Allison Brennan's trilogy. Check out the "Writeminded" blog.

Last books I read: I read "Insomnia" by Stephen King again. That makes my umpteenth time. My own. *laughing* I had to edit the first one. Somehow, it was SO much more fun writing the dang thing. I read quite a few YA while I was doing the Book Fair at the chicken's school in February. Oh. And I read an e-book I won at a chat. I have a book by Suzanne McMinn, but I haven't had the chance to pop it open yet.

Influential authors:
Stephen King: He's the master.
Erma Bombeck: If I could string together words like she did and make people commiserate and laugh, I'd have it all.
Nora Roberts: I want to be able to engage the reader such as she does. The romances have lively characters and great dialogue.
JD Robb: She can create a future world and characters so real I feel as if I'm with them. Amazing talent and stories.
James Patterson: Fast-paced dialogue and story. Love writer/reader engagement.
Edith Wharton: Clever. Very clever.
Clive Barker: His descriptions give me nightmares. He is master of setting and mind games. Awesome author.
Jude Devereaux: One of my first loves. She led me down the romance road and showed me how good it could be.

I'm tagging some people. BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Michelle W.

Ya know I love ya!

The first Monday of the rest of my summer

It's the first Monday my chickens are out of school. Two are in here with me. The others are watching TV. This will all come abruptly to a screeching halt. I need to have some type of organization going on so I can allot time for chores/writing/life in general.
By the day and hour?
I know damn good and well I am NOT typing my erotica with two chickens reading over my shoulders.
Lo and behold, the chickens have been sent outside. I must now go and try my hand at vinyl/laminate stuff for the bathroom.
I've already promised myself to work on the erotica, and I will. Even if I'm in here at dark-thirty tapping away. At least I'll have kept my promise.

I need at least 2000 words today to feel good about the whole thing. I guess I best get to working on that bathroom.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Hot water heater blues

Yesterday morning I awoke to the sound of my feet sloshing on my wood floor. Seems my hot water heater sprung a BIG leak. Huge. Massive. Baaaaaaaaaaaaad.
It was a gas tank. We decided to purchase an electric one. But first...there was a mess to clean.
Water to be sopped and mopped. Fans blowing on the floor to dry everything out.
Oh, and the small task of removing the first tank.
I am oh-so-ignorant when it comes to home improvement. I say this honestly and without rancor. I mean really. How hard can it be?

I had no idea the first tank would be so damn heavy, not to mention the second tank was even more of a pain in the ass. The first tank was a 30 gallon and came with the house. We thought we had ALL the water out of it. Silly, silly us. We didn't. We thought we would carry it through the house to the front porch. Negatory. We ended up prying the screen off the laundry room window (where the HWT lives) and shoving it out. Never a dull moment around here, folks. And then we watched in amazement as water literally POURED out of it. There was much cursing and gnashing of teeth at this point. I believe I may have kicked something. It's all fuzzy.
The second tank is a fifty gallon. It was lighter. But here's the fun part. The damn pipes did NOT match up. We ended up bringing in cinderblocks and 2 x 4's to prop it up to give it enough height. We were constantly moving and tweaking and yes. Cursing. heh
EVERYTHING in the laundry room floor came to live in my bedroom. I couldn't even attempt to get on the computer yesterday. There was a narrow path from doorway to doorway.
There are trails of extension cords throughout the house. Saws, brooms, etc. litter the floor.

We're adding another breaker for the new HWT and the three extra rooms. And then there's the pleasant task of putting down vinyl/linoleum in the bathroom. Can I get a yeehaw?

So I must go. There are things to tear up/down and everywhere. I've made an appointment to write Monday. No exceptions. I also need to look over my first galley and send in my Author info sheet for my second book. Summer vacation? BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Yeah, right.


I want to thank all those who entered my first contest. I believe I'll try to keep up and have a contest every month or so. I apologize for not being able to procure a color-changing candle. I will have one for my next contest! My local retailer sold out of them. The first prize winner will receive their choice of a Yankee Candle with the gift card. The second winner will receive a gift card.

And the first prize winner is: Kim W! I will be contacting you for your snail mail address and preference of candle.
The second winner is: Sara!

I had a great time with this, and I hope y'all will stay tuned for more contests to come. Oh, and more bemoaning the state of my tore up house.

Friday, May 20, 2005


I don't have a large desk to begin with. (I think it's about a yard long) That is fine with me. But I, being a woman in a rush lately, have scattered all sorts of unnecessary items upon my desktop.
Here's a sampling:
several books (From "The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe" to "Key of Valor")
an iguana beanie baby
frog heads off of my favorite pair of frog socks (no frogs were harmed in the making of said socks. they came off in the dryer, dammit!)
ear plugs ( I can't sleep with noise in the house)
a broken watch (not my own)
a pair of clean socks (these are actually mine. the only place I can keep socks. they are a hot commodity around here. I think they're left alone because I tend to snarl when anyone comes near my desk.)
a washcloth my baby chicken folded into a "rabbit" (she was so proud)
fingernail clippers (can't type with crooked nails)
nose spray (damn sinuses)
videotapes (I'm pleading the fifth on what kind)
loose change
various circulars from area stores
a Kermit the Frog bookmark

And then there's my "office" supplies: pens, pencils, sticky notes, stapler, unstapler, hole punch, scissors, highlighters, disks, erasers, printer paper, computer and all accessories, rubber bands, paper clips, push pins, notebooks, staples, thesaurus, dictionary, envelopes, sharpies, and permanent markers.

And so I borrow (loosely) the Capital One question: What's on YOUR desk? And what does it say about you?


Season Finales

WARNING! This blog will talk about some season finales. If you've skipped some in order to watch them later, I warned ya. *grinning*

Let's kill people.
That seemed to be the running theme in the few season finales I've watched. And they always have that damn cliffhanger which leaves me cursing and kicking the nearest piece of furniture.
"Without a Trace" let Viv do ok with her surgery, only to have Danny and Martin being shot at (repeatedly with machine guns) in the last two minutes of the show. Grrrrrrrrrrrrr

"CSI" ended with a girl in jail smiling. I don't know if she's smiling because of what Nick (who had been tortured for two straight hours) said, or because when she gets out, she's going to finish her father's dirty work. This episode had Quentin Tarantino ALL over it. He was the guest director.

I watched the preview to "NCIS". Now, I don't watch this very often. Gibbs is smug. My favorites would be Ducky and the freaky, smart chick with black hair. Abby, I think. She rocks. *grinning*
And apparently, ONE of their team will DIE. The viewers have been warned.

Now, I don't mind what television shows do within reason. But I get oh-so-pissed when they start killing off the people I love to see. "CSI:Miami" killed of Speed. You know, the unkempt cutie that took a lot of pictures? I haven't watched it since. Screw that. Whoever said that I shouldn't hold a grudge can kiss my ass. heh You make me cry, forget you.

And I understand that some people may want off the show. That's fine. But do what "Law & Order: SVU" did with ADA Alexandra Cabot. Keep her alive. But give her a plausible explanation to leave. This woman was shot like five times. She's injured, but she's OKAY. Of course, the viewing audience didn't find that out until the very end. Damn, I had to expend some tissues on that one.

I think there's going to be another death on "CSI: Miami" because I vaguely remember a preview saying one of the CSI's will be gone. Let him/her retire! Not that I care. I don't watch anymore. Put THAT in your microscope and examine it.

Last day of school

I'm fixing to round up the chickens since it's the last day of school. Perhaps run to town and snag a sno-cone. Pink lemonade, of course. *grinning*

I've received my first galley of "Virtually Yours" and need to check it over. My second book cover is also done. WHEW! Busy!
And so, of course, I've not written on the erotica. But that is about to change, my friends. hehehe

It's only about 25% through, and I'm already getting an idea for another one. *rubbing hands together*

I'll be back later to blog again and make my blog rounds.

Contest reminder

Tonight at midnight the contest ends. If you have any problems sending your entry to my chryswriter@aol.com address (and we all know how AOL LOVES to bounce stuff) then please feel free to send to chryscat7@yahoo.com

I will acknowledge receipt of all entries.


Thursday, May 19, 2005

Contest is still open

Hi everyone! Just wanted to let you know the contest is open until Midnight, Friday May 20th. That's CST. Scroll down and answer a few questions. The drawing will be done this weekend by one of the heathen children.
Thanks to all those who've entered so far! Best of luck!


I've seriously considered homeschooling the baby chicken. There is a teacher shake-up at school, and I'm not sure how this will be handled.
I've already put my opinion out there, and now I must wait. And here's the problem:

Baby chicken is in the advanced class. Though she's only in third grade, she's been doing some fourth grade work. It's a split 3rd/4th class. The teacher, who I love dearly, has to leave to teach elsewhere. Now they're putting the children back together. I don't want them to. Not only are there too many children, in my opinion, but I think the ones that were in the advanced class will be bored. I hope not.

So I, being semi-Internet savvy, decide to google some info.
Let me just begin by saying I'm shocked and dismayed. Okay, pissed.

The Department of Education has acknowledged that for students who are enrolled in public-school "homebound" programs (for long-term illness that prevents regular public school attendance), three hours of one-on-one instruction per week is considered to be "equivalent" for their purposes.
Three hours. A week.

The law states (in summary) that children between the ages of 16 and 18 who wish to apply for a driver's license must provide proof of school enrollment and pass a criterion-referenced reading test at the eighth-grade level.
It's great to know my almost sixth grader could get a license at 12. Because she can read at an eighth grade level (at least). I am extremely unhappy with the unregulated stupidity of these rules.

While there is no reporting system in Oklahoma for homeschoolers, it is sometimes recommended that Oklahoma families keep some kind of record of the type of education being provided and each child's progress for at least 175 days of the year.
Some type of record. Hmmmmm. Ya think?

So, I've assured myself I'm more than capable of homeschooling baby chicken should the need arise. But now I'm REALLY worried about the educational health of homeschooled children in this state. Can you imagine?


Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Tore up from the floor up

I'm referring to myself.
And my bathroom floor.
Renovations are kicking my butt. If I'm not spending too much money, I'm tearing something up so I can do it ALL over again. Somehow, this just doesn't seem right.

Good news: I found a beautiful dresser that was over 50% off when searching for barstools.
Bad news: That was only 20% of my total purchase. ACK!
Good news: I'm strong enough to tear the ceramic tiles up out of the bathroom floor.
Bad news: I'm strong enough to tear the ceramic tiles up out of the bathroom floor.
Good news: I've bought all the vinyl/linoleum for the bathroom.
Bad news: It's living in my front room. ALL over my front room.
Good news: I have a new medicine cabinet.
Bad news: I suppose this means I have to tear the old one out of the wall.
Good news: My house REALLY needs this.
Bad news: Time spent renovating is NOT spent writing.

I spent this afternoon watching the chickens' award program. I'm a very proud Mama. All kinds of trophies, medals, and certificates. Those kids aren't the only ones strutting. ;)

Clandestine blogging

I'm blogging. Don't tell anyone. I'm pleading the fifth if anyone asks what I'm doing right now. hehehe
I'm doing research. Um...yeah. Research. Sure.

I'm supposed to be doing dishes/cleaning the living room/helping with the bathroom/coloring my hair/working on my erotic romance/getting ready to go to an awards program for the chickens/keeping track of my kitty who just came back from the vet. Oh...and transcribing and typing up a friend's notebook.
*shrinking farther down in my chair*
Mebbe if I squish down REALLY far, people will leave me alone for a couple of minutes.
I'm not holding my breath. *grinning*

Hope everyone's weekend was lovely. Chickens have three more days of school left. And they are wanting to go to SUMMER SCHOOL. Can you believe that? Their school is having some type of pre-med something or other. Bottom line: They get to dissect a cow's eye. And there's some type of program at the Vo-Tech for forensics.
We'll see how this works out.

I need to acquire the shovel and get after it in the living room. If there's a floor in there, I don't know it.


Okay everyone! Here it is.
You must send me at least fifteen correct answers from the twenty questions.
1st prize: $20 gift certificate from Wal-Mart. I'm still looking for the color-changing candle. If all else fails, I will send another candle as part of this prize.
2nd prize: $15 gift certificat from Wal-Mart.

Send all answers to chryswriter@aol.com I will acknowledge all answers submitted. No addresses will be saved/harvested.

And let the fun begin.

1. Name four columnists from Romancing the Blog. Name one guest columnist. http://www.romancingtheblog.com/blog/
2. What's the topic of Olga Grun's May 11th, 2005 post from her blog? http://olga-lita.bravejournal.com/
3. Who are the four ladies that post on the Writeminded blog? http://writeminded.blogspot.com/
4. Where is Gina, of Gina's Ramblings, located? http://ginasramblings.blogspot.com/
5. Who are the contributors on A Giggle of Gals? http://gigglegals.blogspot.com/
6. What is the name of my first release? And with what publisher? http://whiskeycreekpress.com/authors/Crystal_Inman.shtml
7. What did the "Smart Bitches" dub Jaci Burton? http://jaciburton.blogspot.com/
8. What is the title of Jill Shalvis' 12/05 release? http://www.jillshalvis.com/blog/
9. Which Suzanne McMinn book hits bookstores July 1st? http://www.suzannemcminn.com/blog/
10. What is the name of the book by Kara Lennox that is on her blog? It's available now. http://karalennox.bravejournal.com/
11. Where was Lyvvie born, and where does she live now? http://lyvviesblether.blogspot.com/
12. Name 2 of Desperate Writer's Writing Links. http://desperatewriter.blogspot.com/
13. Name 3 authors from Authors Unlimited. http://authorsunlimited.net/
14. What type of romance novels does Ellen Fisher write? http://ellenfisher.blogspot.com/
15. Name 3 contributors to the Sirens' Blog. http://sirens-blog.blogspot.com/
16. What state do I live in? http://chryswriter.tripod.com
17. What's the name of Mrs. Giggles' blog? http://mrsgiggles.braveblog.com/
18. What are the three things Demented Michelle writes about? http://www.dementeddelusions.blogspot.com/
19. If you write, tell me what you write. If you're a reader, tell me your favorite genre.
20. Who is your favorite author? And why?

Best of luck! And have fun!

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Put me in the zoo

Does anyone remember that book? It was Robert Lopshire, I believe. My youngest would read it OVER and OVER again. I loved it.
That was our surprise trip today. Took the chickens to the zoo. The Tulsa Zoo. We've never been there before. It was great fun. And if I didn't walk five miles, I'll eat my reeboks.
They had a lot of exhibits that the OKC Zoo doesn't have. And vice-versa. It was well worth the long trip to get there. Except, and you knew this was coming, I am TIRED!
We left the house around 9:30 a.m. Arrived back home at 6:45 p.m.

And tomorrow is more of the same ALL DAY stuff. ACK. Double ACK.
Tomorrow is house-goody shopping. Lots of plywood and 2 x 4's. Levels. Wonderful carpentry stuff like that. Oh. And Wal-Mart, of course. Sometimes I can't believe I quit working there. heh
I hope everyone's weekend was lovely. Mine FLEW by. I must go now. The toothpicks keeping my eyes open are beginning to give.

Contest Announcement

Mark your calendars! I'm having a contest. And in honor of my first contest, I'm having TWO winners! I'm so excited!
Okay. Here's what you need to do:
Go to my blog Wednesday, May 18th. There will be a contest with 20 questions on it. You must answer at least FIFTEEN correctly to be eligible to win. I will let every participant know I have received their entry. NO addresses will be saved. It's a one-shot deal. I will list my e-mail address for you to send in your answers.
1st prize: $20 gift certificate from Wal-Mart and a gift. I'm looking at one of those candles that changes colors as you burn it. I will know by Wednesday what the gift is, and I will list it on my blog.
2nd prize: $15 gift certificate from Wal-Mart.

My blog address is: chryscat.blogspot.com

The contest runs from when I post Wednesday to Friday, May 20th, at midnight CST. One of my lovely children will draw the names Saturday or Sunday.

Thanks so much! And good luck!
Crystal Inman*

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Case in point

You know. I forgot to add something in the last post. I'm so not surprised by this.

I'm going to do a contest! YAY! I'm so excited! I think I'll try and post it Tuesday or Wednesday. It will close Friday, and I will have one of the chickens draw this next weekend.
First prize: $20 Wal-Mart certificate. I realize it's not Barnes and Noble, but I seriously think everyone, whether they like it or not, visits Wal-Mart. I'm thinking of setting up a cot there. Also, I saw this EXCELLENT candle on TV the other night. It changes color as it is burned. I haven't checked the store yet, but I want that to be part of first prize. I'll check Monday and get back to everyone.
Second prize: Just because this is my first ever contest, is a $15 Wal-Mart gift certificate.

I'll have about twenty questions. You must have fifteen correct, at least. I'll leave my e-mail address on the day of the contest and everyone can enter like that.
I already have about ten questions I absolutely KNOW I must have on there. Look for it Tuesday or Wednesday. Thanks!

My classified ad

Missing: One woman's mind. Answers to Crystal. Last seen Thursday, May 12th. If found, please contact this blog. It is appreciated.

Friday was a blur of shopping. I'm not kidding. I SO wish I were. We left the house at 10:00 a.m. We didn't arrive back home until 8:00 p.m. I took FOUR children shoe shopping. Can I please get a little sympathy? We were going for tennis shoes. My middle chicken, the foof, talked me into hot pink sandals with black leather print. The straps are shiny, hot pink. This is so her, I just didn't have the heart to refuse.

I didn't read blogs. I didn't post my own. In fact, I remember laughing about something so ridiculous, I don't even remember what it was. My mind=MIA.
I logged on this afternoon and found around 250 e-mails. I HATE sifting through e-mails. It's life POD-dy mouth finding a great POD book. You know the good ones are there, but you have to sort through all the crap first. I've only half finished that. UGH
I sent my Title Information papers in on both my books. They can't find either. I'll be redoing that today and tomorrow. Good news: Second cover art on book is done. YAY! I love Jinger Heaston. She is wonderful!

Tomorrow is more shopping. (insert LARGE groan)
We will be doing that Sunday AND Monday. We start building forms Monday for the new rooms.
I'll apologize beforehand to all the blogs I usually read EVERYDAY and comment on. I'll stop by, but I think it will be a drive-thru, if you know what I mean. School is out in one week. There are rooms to be built, a bathroom to be redone, and I will be in dire need of all my time and faculties. Which brings me back to the beginning...
Wanted: My mind.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Things I wonder about Nora Roberts

Does she do the dishes?
As I ponder my stack of pots and pans, I think perhaps the novelist doesn't type with dishpan hands. I could be wrong.
Does she bloghop?
Who Beta reads for her?
Does her editor weep with joy when Nora sends another manuscript in?
Does she watch her numbers or habitually check the NYT list?
Does she ever have writer's block?
Would she be interested in a slightly manic intern from Oklahoma?
Does her family know better than to disturb her while she works?
Does she write on more than one manuscript at once?
I doubt this, but I would still like to know.
Who are her favorite authors?
Does she have insomnia?
Does she dream of Roarke?
That is one delicious character. Dayum.
Do her sons read her books?
Does she like nuts in her chocolate?
What's her favorite gemstone?

To be a fly on the wall.

Hurry up and wait

I'm not a patient woman.
But writing has taught me the importance of delayed gratification.
When I began writing, I had no concept of how long it took to publish a book. I wrote. I had faith I would be published. Out comes the book. In comes the royalties. Riiiiiiiiiiiiiight.
This past week I was finishing the edits on my first book, picking out cover art for my second book, and writing on my first erotica. Not a dollar in sight.
Next week I'll be sending out several queries on my Suspense and waiting to hear back from my publisher about the third book I've sent.

Okay. I confess. I write because I love it. Even if there were no monetary value involved, I'd be here tapping out thoughts and stories. Because I have to. It's who I am and what I do.

BUT...waiting? To hear back? And to see monetary compensation? It can drive an impatient woman up the wall.

A writer writes because he/she loves to do it. The greatest gratification comes from finishing the book. Knowing you're capable. Treasuring the words. And waiting.
Waiting for the call. The book. The readers.
And I can wait for that. It's worth it. And so am I.

Twisted phrases

Spare the rod... go noodling
Sleep is...for every one else but me
Home is...where the bills are
A spoonful of sugar...goes great on Corn Flakes
Early to bed, early to rise...sucks
April showers bring...tornadoes
The road to hell...is shorter than we think
Does a bear...see Jill in the woods? http://www.jillshalvis.com/blog/
Two's company...three's erotica
He who hesitates...stays out of the bear trap
Speak softly...and no one will hear you
To err is human...to repeat the err-stupid
Do as I say...NOW
Money doesn't grow on...the lazy limb of the tree
Two wrongs...can be quite fun
A bird in the hand...will crap in it
The greatest gift... is one's self
Life, liberty,...and the pursuit of happiness.
This one's a classic.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Jumping the shark

This is a coined phrase. It refers to going past the point of no return. It specifically refers to the "Happy Days" episode when Fonzie jumped the shark. That was supposedly the beginning of the end for "Happy Days."
A confession: I loved that episode. I was young enough that I was enthralled with the danger of it. Of course, I also liked the Brady Bunch episode where they went tropical and Vincent Price starred. Something about voodoo, remember? I could go walk down TV lane some more, but I'll save that for another blog.

When do authors jump the shark? Is there some line authors cross where they should have stopped while they're ahead? I've seen blog posts about authors who have let their series run long, and the magic has dwindled fast.
Have some authors done a work "too death"? Sure, they have. They want to squeeze that last little bit out of a work. And it's hard to see when we're so close to it.
And as a market in general, what has crossed that line? Too many vampires? Brides? Secret babies? Have we flooded the market? Are we drowning?
Many people say that romance books are simply the same stories over and over again. And I suppose, to an extent, they're right. We, as authors, must be original in our telling. That's the talent. That's the difference. Our readers are voracious. When they find a good author, they stick. They're loyal.
And we owe them something for their loyalty. Let's not jump the shark.

Here's your sign

Alison Kent http://alinsonkent.com/blog/ had a guest blogger on the other day. Cathy Yardley described the value of meditation. Check it out for yourself. I thought this was a wonderful idea and made a couple of comments on the post. This is what I found when I logged on today:

Chrys,You need to be draining the excess tension building up in your nervous system, for it could contribute to an unhealthy situation if you don't. Meditation, not medication, is prescribed, as is yoga, a daily walk or other exercise. But most importantly, if you are in a relationship, talk to your partner. Get the energy moving before it becomes too stagnant.

Yes, people. Here's my sign. My horoscope. *laughing*
I've been walking the past five or so days. And now I believe it's time to check out the meditation part of my program. Ya think?

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Thought Process

I like to go off on tangents. I can be thinking about one thing, when WHAM! I'm somewhere else. I have to work to focus on what I need to be doing. Sad, but true.
But tangents hold promises of their own. Have you ever let yourself simply wander along with your thoughts? There are interesting subjects right around the corner. Hiding in the crevices of our mind. Waiting to be freed.

When I attempt to fall asleep, my mind wanders at will. And I find myself meandering down the road less traveled. Makes for some interesting moments. I can recall memories I'd forgotten. Have ideas that spark creativity. And learn.
I believe there's a reason for tangents. There is value in thoughts, especially ones that appear when we least expect it.

I believe this ties into intuition. I'm an intuitive person. I've been at a green light and stopped because something told me to. A car, obviously trying to squeeze through, ran the red light and would have hit my door.
I've called the daycare where my children were because I felt something was wrong. Turns out my oldest had been crying and was upset.

Have you ever felt the need to do or not do something? An inkling, perhaps?
You should wait. You should try this one first. Isn't it amazing what we're capable of?
Maybe you should take this highway or that back road? Only to find that there was an accident on the road you didn't take?
I believe we're all capable of using different streams of consciousness. We only need to tap into them.

Have you ever looked at a blank page and then started writing like crazy? A flow. In the zone. However you want to label it, isn't it great?

Learning to listen to ourselves is an accomplishment. We sometimes let the negative utterly smother the positive. But we shouldn't do that. All the little sparks within us will ignite to fire when given enough air.
Give them life. Nurture the spark. Feed the blaze. Enjoy the warmth.

Monday, May 09, 2005

Three branches of publishing

I will be making a governmental analogy. Note to readers: I hate government. I didn't like it either time I took it. No snickering. Not twice in one year. Once in high school (the teacher and I were incompatible). Once in college (my teacher was a U.S. representative's wife). For those of you who love it, congratulations. I find it fascinating in a distant way. If I don't have to be hands-on, I like it more.

There are three branches of publishing. These are similar to the three branches of government. Bear with me please.
The government has Executive (Publishing), Legislative (Writers), and Judicial (Readers). They keep a series of checks and balances so that one branch does not have a monopoly over the whole shebang.
Each branch has a cabinet. These are the people who work within the branch to help the branch function. People in the branches could include: editors, agents, beta readers, friends, and family.
These three branches must work together to keep a smooth flow. Each branch has its own goals and priorities. And there will be conflict. Aye. Plenty of it. And there will be shifts of balance.
But the important item is to work together. Any divisiveness will be magnified and reported on with glee.

There have been several instances within the past month which have really brought this whole entity home. We, as parts of the publishing industry, have magnified the Great Literary Divide.
Now, I'm not saying this goes for everyone. Clearly there are moments of support. I have found those as well. But I want to focus on the not-so-pretty for a moment.
Publishers, writers, and readers must work together. There has been talk of professional snafus. "Cliquey" behavior. Disrespect. And rudeness.
There is no need.
If you're one of those people that feel the need to be unhappy, then feel free. But don't shovel your BS to the masses as truth. Not only will you be "outed", you will cut your own professional throat. Word spreads. Fast.
A word on "cliquey" behavior. There are some sites which I prefer not to comment on because it almost feels that if I don't know the magic word, I may as well be invisible anyway.
BUT...there are SEVERAL sites which are maintained by several authors, publishers, and readers which I LOVE!
Romancing the Blog and Writeminded are two. Don't be put off!
How are we going to grow as an industry if we are too intimidated to speak up? We won't. We will stagnate. And all three branches will wither and die.

My Mother's Day

I'll be blogging twice today. Once to recap yesterday. And once for the blog which I couldn't get out of my head last night.

Yesterday, I didn't turn on the computer once. I didn't gaze at it longingly. I didn't even acknowledge its existence.
I took the kids to Wal-Mart and bought junk food. Yep. Junk food. I came home, made crab dip and cream cheese poppers, and played poker with the children. We bought poker chips and had a great time. Yes, I may be contributing to the delinquency of my minors, but they will tear it up in Vegas. LOL
I grew up playing friendly poker in my Grandma Bell's rumpus room. She had a poker table, bar, and all the neat accessories. And look how I turned out. *making mental note to hide poker chips and burn the cards now* hehehe
We watched a couple of those neat Discovery channel prehistoric shows. Walked three miles. Came home. Rested. Laughed. Make home-made pizzas. Let the kids eat ice-cream with anything they wanted in/on it. Let the kids bike down the road while I watched them. *You would not BELIEVE the number of trucks on our road yesterday* Finished all this with a beautiful rainbow in the sky. Not bad, eh?

Hope everyone's Mother Day was a wondrous occasion with little moments that marked the meaning of the day. And if you couldn't share the day with Mom, I hope the good memories kept you.

Saturday, May 07, 2005

Rest is for wusses

Once again, Crystal is a goober. I'm thinking of having this needle-pointed on a pillow.

Today was busy. I swear I'm taking tomorrow off. I am. I MEAN it.

I received "Virtually Yours" back from my editor, M. And I spent most of the day editing. Let me just say how I was DREADING this. And let me continue to say I really had a good time with it. M is great. Gave me some pointers. Showed me the light. LOL
In my free time, the chickens and I walked five miles. I don't have a pedometer yet, but the internet assures me that there are an average of 2,000 steps per mile. Between the gals at Writeminded and Kara, I felt the need to exercise. Girls, my aching feet need a word. *grinning* I hope to keep this up daily barring tornadoes or inclement weather.
Okay, wasn't that bad. I split it up into two different trips. 2 1/2 miles each. The chickens loved it. And our lovable dog trailed along. She's so cute.

Many thanks to Suzanne and all other offers who are willing to give away some of their books. I cannot tell you how much I truly appreciate your generosity. I may actually have a TBR pile someday.

And in case I don't make it tomorrow,
Happy Mother's Day one and all!

I need a fix

Many thanks to Gina: http://ginasramblings.blogspot.com
She has sparked this blog topic.

I need a fix. Words. Lots of them. Flowing through my head. My fingers. My life. The right ones. Telling a story. Conveying feelings. Making it happen.
Being a writer is an addiction. And people who don't write, don't understand. They can say they do, but after a couple of minutes, it's obvious they don't. God bless them.
We can rattle on about contests, blogs, and the market. But it's Greek to them. We jabber on about form, style, editing, prose, and deadlines. Their eyes glaze over. Catatonic would be a nice description of their appearance at this point in time.

We are an entirely difference species, my friend.
None of my non-writing friends understand me. (Okay, small disclaimer. I'm not easy to understand anyway, but this doesn't help. Ya know)
I cannot possibly convey to them what writing means to me. To my life. It literally affects all areas of my world. It can be all-consuming. It can make a so-so day, great. And a wonderful day, crappy. It can make me walk on air or beat my head against a brick wall.
It's a sickness, aye. But who would trade it? Not one among us.
So yes. I need a fix. And you know what I mean.

I've been TAGGED!

Gina tagged me.
If I could be a scientist...
If I could be a farmer...
If I could be a musician...
If I could be a doctor...
If I could be a painter...
If I could be a gardener...
If I could be a missionary...
If I could be a chef...
If I could be an architect...
If I could be a linguist...
If I could be a psychologist...
If I could be a librarian...
If I could be an athlete...
If I could be a lawyer...
If I could be an innkeeper...
If I could be a professor...
If I could be a writer...
If I could be a backup dancer...
If I could be a llama-rider...
If I could be a bonnie pirate...
If I could be a midget stripper...
If I could be a proctologist...
If I could be a TV-Chat Show host...
If I could be an actor...
If I could be a judge...
If I could be a Jedi...
If I could be a mob boss...
If I could be a backup singer...
If I could be a CEO...
If I could be a movie reviewer....

If I could be a musician, I'd have one of those crazy contracts that prohibited dark-colored M&M's in my snack bowl. I would demand to bathe in milk. I would be lipo'd from forehead to toes. And I would party with the pretty people.
As I look back on this, I'm thankful I'm not.
If I could be an actor, I would have my own television show. I would have famous designers designing gowns for me to wear. I would also wear jewelry that cost more than a third world country. I would sleep with whoever I wanted to and make the cover of all the glad rags.
As I look back on this, I'm thankful I'm not.
If I could be a movie reviewer, I would be able to see all the movies before anyone else. People would hang on my every word for guidance in the cinematic world. Of course, I would take bribes and recommend some truly horrific movies, but oh well. I would be rich and powerful.
As I look back on this, I'm thankful I'm not.
If I could be a psychologist, I would listen to other people's problems all day. I would help them find healthier lives and make better choices. Unfortunately, being a psychologist, I would refuse treatment for myself. I would think I had all the right answers and would spiral downwards at a rapid rate of speed.
As I look back on this, I'm thankful I'm not.
If I could be a writer, I would put words on paper that would touch millions of people. I would expand people's imaginations and thoughts. I would entertain the masses and donate proceeds to charities. I would do my best to reach out to others and help them realize their dreams. I would be true to the words. I would never forget where I came from. And I would love life.
As I look back on this, I'm thankful I am.

I'm tagging Kel. BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA! You're it! Copy these down and pick five. Explain why these are what you would like to be.

Friday, May 06, 2005

It was inevitable

I was going to be strong, but a night of insomnia and bloghopping has forced my hand.

Your Birthdate: February 18

Your birthday on the 18th day of the month suggests than you are one who can work well with a group, but still remain someone who needs to maintain individual identity.

There is a humanistic or philanthropic approach to business circumstances in which you find yourself.

You may have good executive abilities, as you are very much the organizer and administrator.

You are broad-minded, tolerant and generous; a compassionate person that can inspire others with imaginative ideas.

Some of your feelings may be expressed, but even more of them are apt to be repressed.

There is a lot of drama in your personality and in the way you express yourself to others.

Oddly enough, you don't expect as much in return as you give.


Xerox--WTF? Addendum

Check out my April archives.
April 17th, I believe, is my "Xerox--WTF?" blog. Check it out. I guess I DID know what I was talking about.
I was reading POD-dy Mouth's blog today and came across this: http://www.xeroxaspiringauthors.com/

Check it out. Really. There is a contest and such. LULU and XEROX are teaming up to publish books. I TOLD YOU SO. And no, I don't feel better about it.
I may be epubbed, but I have editors and cover artists. I sincerely hope these people know what they're doing.
But wait...there's MORE!
These self-pubbed people can have their books in Barnes & Noble. And various other brick and mortar stores. Am I green with envy? Mebbe a little. I'm human. It happens.
But it all still boils down to CONTENT. And if your content sucketh, the consumers will not buyeth. That simple. So, I guess I'll sit back and check this whole phenomenon out.
I don't want to self-publish. Hell, I don't want to deal with people now. If I could find an agent who would be the ideal go-between, Christmas would come early.
I have learned from other's mistakes (God bless all those authors who have posted horror stories about the industry on their sites and blogs), so I know I would have to keep an eye on things. But I also know it would be a hell of a lot easier to focus on writing instead of "the business of writing."
Oh...by the by...wrote over 2,000 words today on the erotica. *grinning*
Life is good.


As you can see, I love to spell things out. *snickering*

Okay. Sex. Let me just say that I am truly enjoying writing this romance erotica. Truly. And with that being on the table, let me explain my dilemma.
I like it. A LOT.
*looking around and wondering if anyone is getting my meaning*

Okay. I'll spell it out. During the sex scenes, I am all up in it. I mean WOO! In my other works, where sex was secondary, I was involved. But not to this extent. Sex is at least half this book. (BUT...if I took the sex out, it would still be a viable story. I had to check that out. It works.)

Back to the dilemma at hand. Does anyone else experience this? I mean, it's like reading my own Penthouse letters. And do erotica writers ever worry about someone getting a peek into their sex lives?
I can see people I know buying the book. Reading it. And thinking, "Damn! This is one naughty chick." hehehe

Seriously. I would love to know if other writers REALLY enjoy writing their sex scenes. Hell, you can post anonymous. It's just sex, folks.


Thought thread from Alison Kent's post about professionalism.

This is a rare and precious commodity.

Objectivity in writing is hard. Very hard.
If one is not objective enough, the slings and arrows of others will wound or maim.
If one is too objective, the slings and arrows will not make a dent, therefore lessening your chances of learning something from the experience.
It's a fine line to walk. And I doubt anyone is sitting on the fence here.

This is the case of saying it is easier than actually doing it. I don't want any of my books shredded. Who does? Isn't there such an item as constructive criticism? I believe there is. I believe that people will not intentionally take another person's hard work and tear it to hell for the blazing fun of it. Call me optimistic.
If I were handed a truly dreadful piece of work, I would still attempt to find at least three things I really liked about it. Three. And then I would try to show the person the items which need to be worked on.
We have to be responsible for our actions.
Are there some truly hateful people out there? Are you kidding? Sure there are. They travel in packs and have BIG TEETH. And this is when you need the objectivity. Not everyone will enjoy your work like you do. And you need thick skin to deal with it. For every person who tears it down, there is someone who will build you back up.
But learn from critcism. The constructive kind. Don't bite the person attempting to help. Literally or figuratively. heh
If it's a hatefest, then step back. Ignore it. Move on.
But if there is something viable in the words--Take it. Utilize it. And make it work for you.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Smut update

I've written about 3,000 words today on the romance erotica. I wanted to finish before the chickens came home. They had a track meet today, and I will be hearing about that for hours. *grinning* They're so damn cute.

And I'm making a Mexican dinner in honor of Cinco de Mayo. Hmmm. Wonder if the Mexican people BBQ on the Fourth of July?


Contracts and advances

This intrigues me.
There has been quite a bit of talk about contracts and such among the blogs I visit daily. If there are not enough sales, then good-bye to future contracts. And then, on the POD-dy mouth blog, I noticed she linked to an article about the "Cold Mountain" author receiving an EIGHT MILLION dollar advance for his next book.
Go ahead. Reread that. The number still remains astronomical.
And this is why this is my blog. Because I am about to air my opinions.

That is such an outrageous amount, I cannot fully leave a comment without being profane. Explicity, largely profane.
There are talks about authors receiving large advances and not even earning out that advance. I find this very disturbing.
Is there no such thing as moderation? *snickering* I know. I know. Me. Preaching moderation. What is the world coming to?

Shouldn't the houses/editors/powers-that-be start paying a little more attention to what they're doing? An advance is just that. An advance. You don't need to put all your eggs in one publishing basket. It is insane. And then you're ticked because the author doesn't meet your lofty expectations?
Not to bash the authors, because they are my brothers and sisters, but GOOD LORD! Pay a little attention. Do they really need thousands of dollars on an unproven commodity? And then the publishing house adopts this "once bitten, twice shy" crap. Spare me. YOU DID IT.
And since I'm on a roll this morning, I think other houses should put a lot more into the marketing of their up-and-coming authors. You cannot bank on Nora Roberts forever. Pity that. But there is another one out there. Maybe a handful. Waiting. Working their asses off. Giving everything they have to the career they love.

I won't receive an advance for any of my e-books. This is fine with me. Would I like one? Sure. I have bills the same as everyone else. But a forty-thousand dollar advance would freak me the hell out. Seriously. On the other hand of that, I'd work my ass into the ground to make sure the work I was doing was exceptional.
An advance comparable to the work is great. But someone needs to wake up and realize that the money will come eventually anyway. And there might be more of it if the powers-that-be start investing some into their authors before the authors are expected to shoulder the load.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Touch Taste See Hear Smell

Ahhhhh. The five senses.

I must admit I have my favorites when reading and writing. And I find myself using more of one or two than the others. I don't have that equal opportunity thing going on. I'm working on it.

I love touch. Absolutely MUST HAVE in my books. I have to know what my characters feel like. I need to know the texture of their skin. Their hair. Clothes. Bedding. Carpet. I could go ON and ON.
I need to be able to see my characters. This is tricky for me. I can tell you what each of my characters' domiciles look like. Because they reside in my mind, also. I have this bad habit, according to some, of describing my characters once and letting it go from there. Hope y'all are paying attention. LMAO
The most important part of hearing in my books, in my opinion, is tone. The wind can whistle, howl, and moan. But if there's not a storm abrewing, I don't particularly care. But the character's voices. That is a must. I MUST be able to convey tone in their conversation/dialogue. To me, it is imperative.
Taste and smell. Okay. I'll admit. These are the two I usually let fall to the wayside. I will put in smell if there is a garden, a good meal, or my characters use that as a recognition factor.

The five senses. These are devices an author uses to make the manuscript work. But there is such a problem as TOO MUCH. This is adjective hysteria at its finest.

Adjective hysteria--When adjectives are used to the point of utterly blocking out the story. It's when the reader sees a set of commas and immediately blows past them. NO! NO! No more! I can't take it! Free the nouns!

Which of these senses MUST you have? And which can you forgive the author for not utilizing?


Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Pin cushions and playtime

Baby chicken and I did the half-day hospital thing. We arrived at seven-thirty and stayed for hours. They pricked BC (baby chicken) about 7:45 a.m. Made her drink that foul, sugary crap, and then we waited. We did that every hour until about 11:30 a.m. They took blood every hour.
The lovely phlebotomist (I REALLY wanted to type that word) used to live with my sister back in the day. She told me BC's labs were looking good, and if I talked to the pediatric nurse, we might be able to cancel the last poke.
Okay. The pokes. Geez, I'm such a Mommy wuss. The first poke, my eyes watered. BC was fine. The poked her in the crook of her arm. Second time was the other arm. Third time she did a little pokeage and couldn't get the blood to come.
OKAY...watching my child be the human pin cushion made me want to snarl and bite somebody/something. Then they poked her back in the same hole they did the first time. THE SAME HOLE. Is that humane? I don't think so.
Three down, two to go. The fourth poke she ended up doing it in the top of BC's hand. That's when the PC (phlebotomist chickie) said I should consult with pediatric nurse chickie so as we could cancel the last round.
BC is a trooper. Let me tell you, this kid can eat nails. We visited the gift shop, bought coloring books, and played card games. Not ONCE did she complain.
I asked her, "Which would you rather have? The pokes or school?"
She answered, "The pokes." Can you believe that? *grinning* She's such a studmuffin.
So, of course, we had to shop afterwards. I mean, really. What kind of mother would I be if I didn't follow up torture with the spending of money? We ate lunch (FINALLY) because she had to fast before the blood test. I didn't eat as a sign of solidarity. I had issues with eating in front of my starving child.
The good news: The labs are GREAT. NO diabetes or hypoglycemia. Thank God. And now BC has war wounds to show to her friends tomorrow.
I came home and went directly to bed. My ass drageth. Insomnia has struck again. Just call me the sleepless wonder. SIGH
Slept for three hours then got up. Writing? Not hardly. But I'll tackle it tomorrow when my head's clearer. Um...or whenever that phenomenon takes place.

Monday, May 02, 2005

Square peg...round hole

Fitting in.

Professionally. Do I fit in? Mebbe. Mebbe not. Is it that much of a concern? No, not really. Do I study the market? No. Probably should peek at it every once in awhile. Do my books fit into a certain mold? No. Do I want them too? No again. If I were given the opportunity to write a book I would absolutely loathe, in order to be published by New York(the mecca of writers), would I? I would rather brain myself with my own keyboard.
Geez. What a non-conformist.

How about personally? Will I change who I am to make someone else happy? Nope. I refuse. Will I be a doormat so that someone else feels better about themselves? Do the words "hell no" mean anything? Will I make sacrifices for someone who doesn't appreciate them? Negatory. Will I back down when I know I'm right? *snickering* Not a chance in hell.

Emotionally. Do I know how to analyze my feelings? Yes. Do I blame any emotional duress on outside forces? No. I look a little closer to home. Do I let people with emotional baggage share their luggage? I'll listen, but I won't take on your problems.

Am I a cold bitch? No. I'm not. There are times I care too much. I tend to mother people. I want to better people's lives. I want to "buy the world a coke." *grinning* You get my drift.

But am I the square peg? Are you kidding?!?! Of course I am. But I love it. I truly do. I don't want to spend my life making other people happy at the expense of my own happiness.
The cost is too high, and the reward too small.

So...to all the square pegs out there...Rejoice! Sure that's a round hole. And no, you won't fit it. But carve out your own niche. Maybe a hexagon. Octagon. Anything you want. Because that's the beauty of being the square peg. The possibilities are endless.


Sunday, May 01, 2005

Ad Nauseum

Are your chickens sponges? Do they feel the need to repeat certain phrases off of movies, television, and songs?
Mine do.
Their newest phrase comes from the movie "The Incredibles." You know the seamstress chickie? The little short dark-haired steamroller? "E" I think.
Remember that scene where she's on the phone talking and she says, "Gobble, gobble, gobble, gobble"?
Well. Now my chickens are sounding like turkeys. For some reason, they have taken this one scene and run amuck with it.
It cracks me up. The first thousand times. Then, well, it becomes less funny. Believe me.
And to hear an adult song come out of their mouths? Try this one on: Gretchen Wilson-Here for the Party. Lyric: "Well I'm an eight-ball shooting, double-fisted drinking son-of-a-gun."
I almost fell out of the driver's chair when they burst out in song. This song.
It's fun. And it works on their memory skills, right?
Or something.
So they will continue to adopt cute phrases and songs. And I will continue to be entertained. Lucky for me, they tend to move on before it becomes TOO monotonous.