Monthly Archives: December 2005

cooking

My new WIP stars a hero who cooks. Lots. Right now he’s making an incredible dinner sure to drive my heroine crazy.
I’m not much of a cook, but I can make decent enchiladas and taco salad and awesome manicotti. That about does it for my specialties.
I’m not sure why really. Growing up I was surrounded by good food. The other day I was whipping up a batch of whole wheat waffles (mix, milk, egg, oil PRESTO!) and I thought about my old favorite breakfast. The one Grandma would make for us if we begged and pleaded. Biscuits and chocolate gravy. I know it sounds strange but it was delicious. Way better than sausage gravy. Way better than chocolate donuts. And I learned a long time ago that the absolute best sandwich is peanut butter and dill pickles on white bread. I always have to tell my friends don’t knock it ’til you’ve tried it. Inevitably I hear how great it is once they take the risk and give it a go. DD makes a delicious spaghetti sauce with tomato sauce and balsamic vinegar. It’s tangy and light. Pretty much perfect.
I’m trying to decide which of those favorites my hero will use on my heroine. I might have to spend more time in my kitchen researching. My family will definitely appreciate it.

The importance of dreaming big

The other day a friend asked if I’d sold a book yet and I said no but I had two in NYC and he said well, one of those will probably sell, and I just shrugged and said I was working on something new and the friend’s wife got a weird look on her face and asked why I keep trying when I just get rejections before she lost interest and started talking about french fries and I was left to ponder her question which meant absolutely NOTHING to her and everything to me.
Why do I keep trying?
The answers pretty simple.
Why stop?
I mean seriously, I have these stories in my brain and I get to write them and submit them and hope and pray and dream of one day sharing those stories with someone other than my critique partners. πŸ™‚
I can’t imagine life without dreams. I’m sure people live like that, but not me. I’m going to keep dreaming, keep hoping, keep writing. Will I sell a book? I think so, but I don’t know. But the one way to guarantee that doesn’t happen is to quit. And that’s just not my style.
So here’s to dreams and never letting them die! And friends who ask questions that keep me writing!

Resolutions

It’s that time of the year again. I’ve eaten a ton, slept plenty, spent way too much money, and it’s time to get back to reality.
My MIL read us her resolutions for the last 12 years today.
She still has the lists.
Pretty amazing to see how many of those resolutions she’s kept.
In those 12 years, I’ve probably gained and lost 200 pounds and a hundred dress sizes. The clothes in my closet prove it!
And my lists, yeah, I think I wrote them on the backs of envelopes. Except one. It’s still on the side of my refrigerator along with the swimsuit photo that used to inspire me but now just stays because it’s been there so long, I don’t know what I’d do without it!
This year I’m going to spilt my resolutions into mind, body & soul. The mind stuff will deal with my writing. The body with those ever-changing dress sizes. The soul with family and God.
I haven’t actually made the resolutions and I really have no idea what they’ll be, other than the lose 50 pounds one I do every year!
But it’s time to start thinking about them.

Top 10 reasons I can never be a stay at home writer.
10. Egg nog. The real stuff. Makes for interesting stories, but not very marketable. Not even sure it was English.
9. Naps.
8. Hallmark movies
7. Netflix
6. Eggnog
5. Naps
4. Messy closets that actually talk to you when you have more than a weekend off.
3. Law & Order (I’ve seen them all but it’s fun to have the “this is the one where…” war with dh)
2. Eggnog
1. Naps

Once upon a time I thought full-time writer was my dream job. I certainly write a lot this summer! But then Christmas hit. Dh is off work for the most part and writing seems almost a chore. WHY? How is it possible to write more, far more, when I’m working all day than when I’m not?
Oh yeah. Eggnog and naps.

Finally!

It feels like Christmas. I can’t believe it took until Christmas Eve! I don’t know why it never really felt like Christmas this year. Maybe it was the decorations up in Sam’s at the end of September. Maybe the season’s been stretched so long that it no longer feels the same. Maybe it’s that I didn’t wrap presents until last night. I don’t know. I’ve certainly eaten enough Christmas cookies and breads for it feel like Christmas. πŸ™‚
Whatever the reasons, it didn’t feel like Christmas. But it does now and that’s a good thing.

motherhood

You would think after almost sixteen years of this I’d have it figured out. But no. Huh-uh.
Last year dd lost her glasses in a field at my mother’s house. Imagine two people in a huge red dirt pasture of nothing but freshly tilled rows. That was dd and me searching. For hours. To no avail. Less than 24 hours after she’d gotten them.
This was the third major purchase loss after two retainers the previous year.
So you’d think she’d know don’t take stuff like that to her grandmother’s. But no. I just got a phone call. Her new glasses–the ones I spent entirely too much on two months ago– are broken.
Grrr.
I guess my teenager is in sore need of being treated like a baby. And I guess she’ll get just that.

Movies for inspiration

I’m spending the day watching movies to help inspire my new book. It’s set in a Texas/Mexican border town. I figured I’d rent El Mariachi, Desperado and Once Upon a Time in Mexico. DH said I was crazy. He said I’d hate the movies.
He was wrong. But what surprises me is what I found.
El Mariachi, a low budget indie film has somewhat of a cult following, The other two, continuations of that early film are HUGE big budget films. Robert Rodriguez writes and directs them all. But that early film is a thousand times the movie the others are. There’s this amazing sense of irony from the very first frame, a stark cinematography that matches the films’s setting, a sense of foreboding that follows the main character,a hero that’s not quite a hero. I loved El Mariachi, I thought I’d love the other two also. Nope. They’re okay, but nothing in comparison to that early low budget film.

Category Romance

I love category romance. Always have. The first romances I read were those great Greek shipping tycoons and secretaries who won the lottery or sisters in the hospitals falling in love with doctors who’d lost all. I was thirteen and through those books, the world was mine for the taking.
Since then things have changed. I don’t read the books with those themes as often, even though they’re still published. Now I read a ton of Supers, IMs and Intrigues. I love these books because they almost always deliver an awesome story, but they do so in a condensed format. I can read a great book in a short amount of time. They fit my busy lifestyle.
I keep hearing people say category is dying.
I don’t think that’s the case. I thinks it’s shifting, and that’s not a bad thing.
Fewer books wouldn’t be a great thing for me as an author trying to break into that market, but it would probably be a good thing for the market as a whole.
Used to I’d go to the store and choose one or two out of 16 books. Now I go to Wal-Mart and there are rows and rows of series length books. If I were a new reader, I’d be lost. Shoot, I’m an old reader and I just discovered Virginia Kantra and Karen Templeton this year! Talk about missing some greats!!!
I hope the people out there saying category romance is on its way out are wrong. I hope H/S continues introducing me to amazing new authors and fabulous stories I can read in a short time. Stories about a million different things but which always deliver the promise: Happily Ever After.

Woo Hoo

Okay, so ugh might be the word I use most often when starting a new project, but it’s followed closely by woo hoo.
I love my new story. I can’t wait to see how these two end up HEA and alive. πŸ™‚

I tend to be pretty sparse with description. These days I’m WAY more heavy on dialogue and I think description can weigh a scene down if you’re not careful. Still setting is an important part of the book and sometimes the clothes a character wears, the way they fit, the way the characters interact with their dog and kids, whatever, it all can play a big part in characterization and story. It’s something I need to work on. But it’s something for the edit stage of the game I suppose.

14 pages today. woo hoo. I wonder if that worked off the slice of chocolate dream cake I ate?

Music for Missing: Ozzy and Van Halen. Looking for something with a metal edge and some darkness, but not too much. Maybe a latin feel mixed in. Does this even exist?!

Good intentions

I planned on writing a ton tonight. Instead I reread what I’d written, which yesterday was the best book ever and tonight is total and complete crap. 😦
But in a few minutes I’m sure it’ll be pure gold again. Definite CALL material.
I did watch America’s Next Top Model with DD. And I Love the 90s.
It’s only 9. Surely I can get the next chapter written.
UGH.
Why is it that ugh is one of my most used words when I’m working on a new book?!

I tried

I really did try to continue writing last night, but the Sharpie turned my nails black so I quit. A new excuse.
At least I have 21 pages of a frightening new book ready to go. Today after lunch the excuse is dried up. No more smeared marker to keep me away from the keyboard. Of course I just noticed dd missed the o-key.
Tomorrow I meet with my CP’s for the first time in a month. I can’t wait.
I was supposed to get my eyebrows waxed, but I can’t do both. So the eyebrows are getting put on hold. Scary, but a girl’s got to have priorities.
I’m over my rejection dejection. It’s an inspirational novel. It’s going to sell when it’s supposed to.
I’m focusing on my romance.
Yesterday’s romancing the blog column put rejection in perspective. Excellent agent advice.