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Showing posts from May, 2007

HEY there's an amex ad

that has a song from Spinal Tap in it. heh.
stop messing around
you know what I want
gimme some moneeeeeeeaaay

the things we do to avoid work

I'm sitting at the dining room table, trying to write. I'm playing with a ruler instead. Inspired by Beth, I just measured my hair.

one bit was 37" long, another 34". The hair I yanked out was only 23"

Back to plotting.

Thursday Thirteen--13 things I want

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Check it out! I finally have something official looking


Thirteen Things I want

. . but probably won't get. Pathetic Sigh.


1. A Nora Roberts bobblehead doll



2. A contract with my pal Blunder.



3. A kitten



4. A puppy.



5. A slot on the NYTimes Best Seller List.



6. A better singing voice



7. Lunch in NYC with my favorite group of writer pals.



8. A contract with Rose Hilliard. Or Laura Cifelli. Or Hilary SARES, for God's sake. sobbing



9. Visits from Aya and Naomi at Thanksgiving again. And anyone else who wants to come, LR.



10. My kids to stop fighting with me and each other about computer time.



11. More interesting ideas for this list.



12. A piece of really good chocolate cake, RIGHT NOW. THIS MOMENT. With fudge frosting.



13. A good ending for this damn story I'm writing. Ugh.


Links to other Thursday Thirteens!
1. (leave your link in comments, I’ll add you here!)



Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!


The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thurs…

three meme

a Meme from Doug. I love not having to think for blogging.

Three Things That Scare Me:
1. The stories I hear from the refugees. Yes, it can easily happen here. Don't kid yourselves, Amuricans. No one is immune from insanity.
2. Weird viruses that make you bleed from your eyeballs
3. The IRS. I have no reason to, btw.

Three People Who Make Me Laugh:
Boys 1-3

Three Things I Love:
Boys 1-3

Three Things I Hate:
1. Middle school
2. The local understaffed post office
3. GWB, even more than one and two combined and multiplied by a gazillion.

Three Things I Don’t Understand:
1. Math of any sort beyond the level of oooooooooo fourth grade when anyone asks for help, I go instant d. in headlights.
2. The fact that advertising works. I mean "ring around the collar" must have worked or they wouldn't have run that campaign for so long.
3. The bread machine that sometimes worked but often didn't, even though the measurements, timing and processes were identical. Now in pieces at the bottom of …

SBD, standard precoffee "kids books are better these days" rant.

Mike's back. He went to a conference most of last week. What did he bring back as Welcome Home Dad whadja bring me gifts? Three-foot-long wooden ninja swords (of course one is already broken). Every now and then he drops the responsible dad thing and acts like a good male idiot. phew.

Segue into Let Them be Idiots.

The books I had as a kid...been thinking about that ever since I hauled out Nobody's Boy and reread it. Pfah. He's kind of a dull dude because he (unlike a lot of other characters) is A Good Boy.

The other book I loved back then was all about a bad little girl who (because she's so bad) is shrunk to a teeny thing and has to fly around on the back of a goose. I think it was actually a few books but damned if I can find the titles. Maybe it was Norwegian? Someone tell me the name of the book, okay? Please? Thanks.

Anyway.

She couldn't just shrink, like William Joyce's George. No, the shrinking was punishment so she could Learn and Turn Good. All the damn bo…

Thursday Thirteen--words I like

yeah, so it's Friday. Sue me.

I was going to make a list of 13 things Aya left behind (smoke from fingertips, joke money grabber, insta-snow, bits of film, Pocky candy, silicon paint kit, a printer...) most of it on purpose.

But sticking with this week's theme of "I'm Too Lazy to Get Off My Butt" I don't want to wander the house looking for the various Ayaesque things. I'll just sit here and think of words I like the sound of. Not the meaning in particular--just words that are fun to say aloud.

1. Liquid
2. Apocryphal
3. Languid (must like those L words)
4. Snubnose
5. Template
6. Juicy
7. Whisper
8. Onomatopoeia (sort of standard likeable word)
9 Tenderloin
10 Swedenborgian
11 Osteoporosis
12 Silly
13 Momentum

Is ding-dong really a word? I like that one too. So? Which words appeal to you? ("appeal" is a good one. And which has a nice wind to it.)

Hey! Does anyone have a job or internship for a film type? Aya's done with school and looking. She showed us her…

why I'm not here

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the reasons:
big pile of mulch
sick kid
niece visiting(hi Aya! Congratulations on graduating! Yay!)
the big HUGE pile of mulch and the dog that eats it
dog vomit

I realize that the pile of books I listed on my last entry were books I've mentioned here before. This is because I glanced from my computer to the same shelf I always look at. Considering there are bookshelves in every room of this house, that's just sad or lazy or both.

Okay, I shift away from that shelf and look across the room at another. I spot a book that I loved as a kid is Nobody's Girl by Hector Malot. I don't see Nobody's Boy by the same guy, but I loved that one too. I suspect they're the sort of books that don't hold up over time. Victorian moosh, you know. Damn, I had a lot of Victorian books back then. These were translated from French, I think. Oh. Ah. another reason I suspect they might be too soupy is that I located this picture on this website.

ta da! there we go--two more titles that are…

SBD Sort of Obscure Books

Jennie has created an experimental meme: The Little-Known Favorites Meme. Rules: List and describe three of your favorite books that other people might not be familiar with. Then tag five people. See, easy!

I was going to steal the meme from jmc and it turns out I was tagged. The deal is I list three books I love that aren't wildly popular. Most of the books in that category were popular at one point, but are just passe.

An Episode of Sparrows (and a bunch of other books) by Rumer Godden. She could explore sentimental issues without getting overly sentimental.

EF Benson, the original Snarker. Everyone knows his Mapp and Lucia stuff, but I like some of his other stuff too. The Freaks of Mayfair is a good one. When he wrote seriously, he did get all Victorian moosh. I read An Autumn Sowing but only because he wrote it. Noble self sacrificing in that case wasn't my cup of tea. He's better when he doesn't try to write about truly good people.

The Colors of Snow by Kate Fenton…

It's organic!

It's tiresome to other blogs.
But good God, people, I can't be grateful I'm not posting Mrs G's contest so I'm setting the bonsai generator that Fester sent unsuspecting.
Bad, happy little monkey that everyone is now posting the link to a blog expecting something new and find out that everyone is now posting Mrs G's contest so I'm setting the link to ignore things like to point out it's just links to go to a blog expecting something new and interesting friends...
Bad, happy little monkey.


The above is what comes out whenBonsai Generator works this entry over:

It's tiresome to go to a blog expecting something new and interesting and find out it's just links to other blogs. But good God, people, I can't be expected to ignore things like the bonsai generator that Paperback Writer posted.

And I'd like to point out that everyone is now posting Mrs G's contest so I set the standard.

And you should be grateful I'm not posting the link to the c…

how I tune out my children

My informative, non-whiny post is over at the passionate prose blog.

other news:

1. I take back the other prize and award Theresa Meyers with the 2007 Professional Writers Response to Adversity. Maybe she can put that one on her resume?

2. I started a fire (in the fireplace) because I will not turn on the heat, dammit.

3. No, no! Stop sending me emails. You can't make me interview my characters in public.

This Week's Award Winning RWA Drama

The judges are unanimous: Duh. No contest. Triskelion publishing and RWA.
The judges roll their eyes and have already left the fake walnut conference table to go to the bar. They are in need of a few stiff drinks. They award secondary prizes to the following:

Most comprehensive posting of the whole Trisk/RWA Drama:
the Ja(y)nes present both sides and let you decide. (go down a bit to see the various posts about it. They've already moved on of course--to the subject of books, of all things. tchah. )

Best response to general blog drama meltdown:
as usual, the award goes to Mrs. G's latest drinking game.

Most nightmarish story, ever . . . and her own low-key presentation underlines the horror (lifted from dearauthor.com):
Theresa Meyers, President of Blue Moon Communications, and author of The Spellbound Bride, related this tale:
My book was contracted to come out in print with Triskelion and would have been in bookstores in less than two weeks. There were multiple signings scheduled …

three whine time

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1. When it comes to promo, no more first-person notes from characters. No, I mean it, just stop. Let the damn book speak for itself or if you have to have a blurb, fine. No more letters, unless the whole book is in first person. And if you do interviews with your character, good, but keep them private unless we've already read the story. I want the STORY to tell me about the people in it. Dammit. Unless it's your blog, then sure, it's your right, I suppose. Maybe.

2. Why do I find everyone else's over-used word but never my own? Why? Why? Why? I use the trick of going backwards. I read aloud. And yet every time I look at something I've written, I find another repeated-way-too-often word. Solution: never look at my own stuff again. (I don't usually...I was hunting for a section to post in a contest)

3. When it comes to romanceland's male stomachs, we need something new. I mean, wash board stomachs. When was the last time you saw a washboard? Huh? And six pack…

Oh John! Oh Marcia! Oh Boy!

Paperback writer has the best deal** on the web, ever. Your own downloadable copy of John and Marcia: The Novel Crash Test Dummies with notes. Read it and weep with laughter, or maybe cringe with recognition.

____________________________
**management requires me to say second best deal. My contest yada yada yada.

The two contests.

HEY! It's time to pimp again. Get back here, you guys. Enter the contest! Win gift certificates! Spread the virus. You can win up to sixty dollars.

Just click on the link, enter the information you find there (you can even copy/paste if you want) in your blog and there you go. ta da! There's a chance to win thirty.

See? I don't just whine

I got a note from one of the contest types, thanking me for judging her entry. I went back to my notes to see what I'd written and the answer is, not much. Her entry was particularly good.

I reread it and realized that a lot of my favorite reading lately has been unpubbed stuff. Hey, just because I make fun of some of it doesn't mean much. I make fun of my kids and they're perfect. Even if they do know the origin of "safeword." (They do and my husband doesn't. Great. Kids are educated about SM in school maybe? Mike has got to start reading some EC or at least my stuff. . ..)

Anyway.

Some of the writers I like and you won't read for at least a year are the contest entries, Doug's stories, Carrie L's novel, and I'm waiting to read Bettie's. And my crit partners like Su and Terry and all I can say is I get lucky early, y'all. Ha.

Hey! You!

We were in Marshalls in West Hartford over near the fake flowers. I was the one trying to find twin sized sheets that weren't pink. You're the lady who was trying to talk to her mother but losing it. "Think about it, Ma. It's not gonna work. That's the wrong color for your house." and "They're completely not what you need. There should be more than one anyway."

Your Ma was old and shuffling and out of it. I could hear that frustration in your voice and I recognized it and knew I'd sounded the same way, trying to reason with someone who's not operating on the same plain (or is it plane? are we on a big grassy thing or in a crowded cabin?) Anyway. I could hear something familiar in the way you bordered on the edge of losing it with that old lady.

I remember lots of trips with my own doddering mother. And I so wanted to go up and touch your arm ...

....and yell hey, LADY, SHUT THE FUCK UP. The woman's going to be dead any day. Just tune it…

thanks!

I'm getting a kick out of the reviews. Daisy wrote a great one.

I'm so relieved. Bettie is back in business AND my codpiece of cliche [-2] doesn't outweigh the good play points.

Here are a couple of my successful plays:
[You have earned the Chalice of Chutzpah, +5 Hit Points]
[You have earned the Helmet of Hijinkiness, +12 Hit Points]

still, I do have to face . . .[You have become lost in the Fjords of Fiznuckin', -9 Health Points]

final score:
I'd seriously pay to read a Bettie review.

Thursday Thirteen--contest drinking game

I was going to do something like a suspense romance drinking game but then realized that lately most of my reading has been contest entries. LOTS of them.
A list about my list:
a. I probably do some of these things, too. So do a lot of published writers. Some of these will take me out of a story, others I barely notice.
b. None of these is based on your manuscript. It's based on yours and about 7 others. I've seen all of these.. . . errors? habits? in multiple manuscripts. Otherwise, I'd be guilty of an indiscretion which would get me kicked off every contest loop, ever. hmmm
c. Enter my other sort of contest--the one where you might get money, not give it.

The Romance Manuscript Contest Judge's Drinking Game


1. We get a description of the heroine as she looks in the mirror. 3 gulps

2. Someone sneers, smirks, laughs or scowls words, as in "Look at me," he smirked. 1 largish sip

3. The heroine, to display her independent or feisty nature, tosses her hair. 1 sip in a…

yikes

crappity! Crap! I can't find the rug Fatima made that I borrowed to take pictures of to put on the website. . . . Did one of you steal it? Well? I promise, I won't be mad if you confess now. Guh!

answering the meme

First, a word from our sponsor:ENTER THE FLIPPING CONTESTS.

A lot of my 8 things are about other people because I'm dull, but here you go.

1. My grandfather invented the x-acto knife. Sundel invented the damn thing and I think it even says so at the official website. Sunny (and I hear he was something of a mournful grouch) was an inventor all his life. So there, Louise.

2. Louise, my cousin (actually my mother's cousin) was US poet laureate** and in interviews has said herfather did.. . The story I've heard is that my grandfather invented it to be a surgical tool. It didn't work well for that because it was impossible to clean well and Uncle Danny was probably the one to suggest marketing it as a hobby tool.

3. but I don't really know the exact details because I can't recall any conversations with my grandfather who was senile by the time I noticed him. I do recall conversations with Uncle Danny--Louise's father, who was much younger than Sunny. Danny was wonde…

SBD reiterating repetitively again

Today, it's The List.
I had no hand in creating most of these items.

A.First, the awesome contest.It's hip, it's viral, it could be worth sixty dollars to you. Enter it.

B. Now the list of romance drinking contests. Please use these games wisely and do not, for god's sake, blame me for the hangover. I'm talking to you, Amelia.

1. Mrs. G's Paranormal Romance Drinking Game
2. Mrs. G's Regency Romance Drinking Game
3. Smart Bitches's Paranormal Romance Drinking Game
4. Smart Bitches's Contemporary Romance Drinking Game.
5 Random romance Novel (or "Nove") Phrases Drinking Game. A mere hint of a game.
6. Andygrrl's Mystery of Udolpho's Drinking Game. (and the rest of the blog is worth a look, too)
7. Miss Marple Marathon Drinking Game (it's sort of like a book, right?)
8. Random unrelated to any sort of reading Drinking Games.

oh BOY!

Mrs. G has a new paranormal romance drinking game up.

Yes, this is perfect. From the URBAN FANTASY SECTION:

There are a vampire and a werewolf love interest in the same book - 6 sips.
Heroine has sex with one or both under the influence of some horndog spell - 8 sips.
Sex apparently augments her powers - 11 sips.
And gives her special new powers - 12 sips.
Hero wants to impregnate her because their baby will be special - 16 sips.
So does the bad guy. To impregnate the heroine, that is - 17 sips.
By Book Four of the series, everyone is either shagging or wanting desperately to shag the heroine - 26 sips.

I love them romance drinking games! I'm off to find more. Didn't Darla do one about Scottish romances? (Mrs. G has more)

Official Have I Got A Deal For You

It's official because I've got the updates put in and thus made it easier for you to use!

THERE ARE TWO CONTESTS! Both end JUNE 19, the day Revealing Skills comes out in print.


For CONTEST ONE, you don't need a website or blog. You can just email me or post a comment. (although if you do have a blog or website and you did post the review, I'd be grateful. Unless, of course, you compare the book unfavorably to horse manure)
For CONTEST TWO, you need a website or blog. (This is a change because, as someone pointed out, anything else is too spammy)

CONTEST ONE: Review a book and be put in a drawing to win a thirty dollar gift certificate from Barnes and Noble, Amazon or Samhain, your choice.
Here's how it works: I'll send you any one of my books. See the list below. You then write a review and put it in your blog or somewhere online. If you don't have a website, you can post the review in my blog under comments or email it to me. (my email address is on the right s…

a break from the contest for AWESOME BOY

Boy Two says Make another post about me because I'm awesome.
He is, but I can't find a photo on this computer. I'll put one in later.
IN THE MEANTIME!
Here's his post.
AWESOME BOY!
And how come you all didn't comment on his AWESOME POEM? And guess who picked the labels for this post.

the best selling author speaks

this is pulled from a couple of emails and my imagination...

My good friend and I are at different stages of our writing, even though we started at about the same time. I'm getting some work, chugging along, but I haven't had a New York contract for a while. She's a best-selling author with books contracts lined up for the next four years. I asked her once why she thought she was doing so much better. She told me then and tells me now. One word...no, two words. the first one

LUCK

the second
BRANDING.

She is very, VERY careful about her public image. She doesn't want her name associated with anything that isn't directly linked to her books or with romance. And she doesn't publicly do anything more political than, say, Brenda Novak's contest. She is a wonderful person and I'm not just saying that because I want her to give me a quote on for a book some day. (She doesn't want to be associated with erotica so she won't do Summer)

BSAF: I see you're d…

Have I got a Deal for You

So now I'm sort of stymied about how to Flog my Books.
How about you help me?

I'll send you any one of my books. Even the out-of-print one by Kate (Somebody Wonderful)--You then write a review and put it in your blog or somewhere online. You hate the book, well, I'll survive. And you'll be put in a pool to win a gift certificate ($30) at Barnes and Noble or Amazon (updated to add Amazon because I'm thinking I might put this in my blog there. Heh) or Samhain, your choice.

The only book not included in this offer is Taming Him.

If you put this offer on someone's site or your own, show me and I'll put you in a drawing for everyone's favorite, a THIRTY DOLLARS! gift certificate for Barnes and Noble, Amazon, OR Samhain, your choice.

That's not so complex, right?

Here's the deal (repetition is good)

1. Get a free book by Kate and or Summer and write and post something about it ("I loved/hated this book by Kate and/or Summer. You should/shouldn't buy…

feel the edge of doofusness

I engage in two kinds of activism
1. the indignant yelling and carrying-on type with the self-righteous quality of pure anger.

2. the "er, um, okay" type. We're not talking horrible cognitive dissonance here. Just a case of slight awkwardness.

That second is the event or action that I doubt will make a difference, might even be counterproductive, feels silly . . . and I wish I didn't have to, but it's the only thing I can think of to do. It's usually political, occasionally personal.

Examples:
Get out the vote calling when 60 percent of the calls end in hang ups.
Way back in the day, learning how to do civil disobedience properly ("allow your body to go limp").
Raising my hand when an overly earnest person asks "who in this room cares?"
Going and talking to someone who's unfairly earned public censure--even though that person is unpleasant and smells bad.
In other words, standard liberal (or, from what I understand, Christian) stuff.

The sligh…

bats over romancelandia and school

Of all the blow-ups exploding on the blogs, I find Carol Stacy's response to Lauren Bto be a blow-up in itself . . . as in the most disheartening--and my vision of RT is blown up. Heck, I love the magazine and the gloriously silly, fun event (that I've never been to). But UGH.

1.We'll take your money but we won't treat you well and we think you're wasting your time because our readers don't like your stuff--comes across as bigotted. Not to mention dumb--she doesn't seem to know many of her own readers. It's clear that most of the m/m readers are hetero romance-reading women, in other words, the people who buy Romantic Times.

I say the other two batfuck [copyright jmc] crazy moments are just entertaining.

2.Kathryn Falk at Karen's. As far as I'm concerned, KF can be whatever she wants. She's too colorful and eccentric and just out there to keep down. I'd hate it if she stopped being Kathryn Falk. (Same with Karen being Karen, btw. So of cour…

another fray

I wrote something at dailykosabout Lauren Baumbach's icketty experience at the RT convention.
(see Lauren B's blog for the full story.)

here's a first

Every now and then a romance writer snaps. She has her fill of bad reviews (sometimes it just takes one good snark) and, with a mighty cry of pain, she uses her blog or someone else's, to assault critics or the reading public in general.

Someone like Karen is always there to jump into the argument and inform the writer she's a moron.

Today we have apparently have a cover model going over to the dark side.

Is there a single word that describes trying to kill your professional image by flaming the very people you want to attract or buy your books?

Come on, guys, there must be. Idiot doesn't count. There has to at least be a good acronym.


And another thing. (updated because jmc is absolutely right. I got the phrase that pays wrong. Sorry Jen)

For most of my life, I've restrained myself because I didn't want to be A Mean Nasty Bad Person and because I didn't want the police knocking on my door asking a lot of nuisance questions about threats I've made.

I hereby declar…

God, I'm so easy now

Years ago I worked on a magazine and then a newspaper for kids. Here's how long ago it was--all of our press releases came by fax.

I'd be ready to fax some writer background on a story and the thing would start buzzing and whirling and I'd stand there cursing the PR idjit who was clogging our only fax machine with trash when I had work to do. Our recycling pile (or was it trash back then?) was scary big and 99 percent of it was from that fax machine. (Although when I first got there to the magazine faxes were on that stinky fax roll paper. Ugh. [And that's what my machine still uses.])

If we didn't have a lot of news or needed inspiration, we might look through the stack for story ideas, but most of the time? Outta here without a second glance. It still amazes me that people spent their time and effort sending those things out.

Today I got my first press release as a blogger, and instead of hitting delete I got excited. VERY excited. It's Harlequin. I love Harlequ…

late sbd: next time someone whinges about posers

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Lesson for today: The covers of the past can help remind us that there are worst things than posers.

Sometimes there's just nothing . . .The title. I'm sorry I can't add anything better than that.

Any closer, ya smirking lout, and you can kiss that chin-cleft goodbye



Her champion what? Hey?


camarilla

I use refdesk.com as my home page. It's a fine resource, though I'm guessing the founder is connected to Matt Drudge (same last name, connects to Matt's page, the default news page is breitbart, which labels itself conservative.)

Anyway, I don't know if the guy running the page has any say over Word of the Day but look at today's. Heh. I'd never heard of the word so I got my day's education before 8 am. What's more I particularly appreciate today's usage. Hmm maybe it was yesterday's (today is stymie. Pfah) Still true today unfortunately.

camarilla
Definition:
(noun) A group of confidential, often scheming advisers.
Synonyms:
cabal, faction, junto
Usage:
The people thought the war was for a righteous cause, but in truth, it was the brainchild of a greedy camarilla that hoped to profit from it.