Friday, January 27, 2006

First of all, a big Snoopy dance for my buddy Marguerite Arotin, who just sold her historical romance The Locktender's Daughter to Wings E-press!

Then to soothe my tired tootsies, a friend came into possession of some Body Shop foot soak and body scrub she couldn't use, and passed on to me. I now have ten digits of peppermint soaked, properly salt scrubbed bliss, comfortably ensconced in my padded walking socks and bear head Happy Feet slippers.

Writing today went very well. My hero, Simon, is finding out the truth of the Very Bad Moment of his youth and get the push he needs to keep hope in a Dire Circumstance. (Forgive the Capital Letters, as I'm reading a delightful book for review that has chapter titles like that.)

Another contender for best moment of the day was when my dad asked for copies of promotional stuff so he can hand them out in his travels. Seeing as how he was an advertising professional for a few decades, I think I may have the health care market covered. If there's a nurse or technician in town who has not yet heard of my book, they probably take care of parts he doesn't have. This coming from the man who had the firm stance that he'd never read a romance novel and never would, makes me happier than my peppermint soaked feet.

Also reminds me, I need to print his "my daughter writes historical romance novels" bumper sticker which he has said in front of witnesses he *will* put on his car.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Snarkling Clean

I'm guest snarking on Snarkling Clean in the "Pooh's Thoughtful Place" at the moment. Come and see! My first guest spot, how exciting.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

This should fix the margin problem, and boy does it show off the graphics even more. Huzzah. Keep an eye out for more cosmetic updates. Thanks, Marguerite!

Group went well last night; everyone's on track, and ideas are starting to creep back into my brain for the next book, The Wild Rover -- a few new developments I hadn't thought of before, which should help the story along greatly, and let me justify watching hours of Survivor on tape. I look forward to getting back to Drew and Trista...but still need to finish Simon and Jonnet's story first.

I've been doing a lot of reading online from various sources, and even if the historical market is going through a soft period, I firmly believe it's ready for a resurgence. Better than ever maybe? Maybe. It's still what I'm passionate about reading and writing, and what naturally comes out no matter what sort of story I sit down to tell. I may soon start myself on a program of rereading and studying the historical romances that are in my personal classics collection. How can I incorporate what works for me from those stories into my own work, and keep what doesn't work, out. All with my own personal flavor, of course. Should be an experience.

Currently finishing reading Jennifer Blake's recent historical, A Challenge to Honor and enjoying that muchly. Set in 1840s New Orleans, not usually my parvenue, and admittedly bittersweet in light of recent events, I find myself completely swept into the atmosphere, which is something I love dearly whenever it happens. I will definetly be getting the sequel, and apparently several more are in the works. I will clear shelf space now.

Up next in my reading revue; Lady Anne's Dangerous Man by Jeane Westin. Restoration era, highwayman, gorgeous cover, I am there. It's a review copy, so will post here when I have the review up at

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

I should be writing furiously to come up with a scene for nag group tonight, but
A) Dana just told me she can make her own Photoshop brushes, which excites me to no end. Historical pictures of my eras, here we come!


B) I found My Outcast Heart on Mobipocket, and apparently people who have bought me have also bought:

THE GAMBLE by Joan Wolf (I've read another of her books, liked it, and the heroine of this one is named Anna...hmm, is that the connection?)

Pocket Oxford English-Spanish / Spanish-English Dictionary -- I speak Spanish. My high school actually had to invent a Spanish Five class for me, since I still wanted to take Spanish and I'd already aced one through four. My teacher gave me a play or novel in Spanish each week and we discussed it one on one on Fridays. I loved that class. Miss Von Neida, are you out there?

VANESSA, by Lynne Connolly -- another historical romance, Regency era. Also Awe-Struck, and I'm on at least one email list with the author.

THE JESTER, by James Patterson -- don't know if my DH has this title, but he reads Patterson.

THE GAURDIAN, by Nicholas Sparks -- never read him, but I understand he writes love stories with tragic endings. Hmm, there is angst in mine, but I promise a happy ending.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Kudos to Marguerite the Magnificent, creator of this lovely new background. We've been talking about some very exciting graphic things, so look for notices of new stuff to come.

This has been one of those days. Woke up two (EEK) hours late, so had to hoof it in to work, where I was greeted by a very peeved cat who was not pleased I deviated from the schedule. Olivia is very big on schedule. We refer to her as Franklin Kitty (after Franklin Covey day planners) because she has things down to a science.

Hard time settling in to work, and by two thirty in the afternoon, have not yet been actually writing. Nor yesterday -- that was other work related stuff, but not actual writing. Plus I bought two stamps last week that have yet to see ink or paper. Plus I will not have free time on Monday. ::lay head on desk and sob:: Spent much of the day screaming something not unlike "BAH!" at the computer every time my fingers think they're on a split keyboard, or my wrist (or kitty) touches the wrong button and sentences, windows or pages move of their own volition, transplant themselves elsewhere, or close entirely. ::whimper::

But Lost was great this week. I love Eko, and poor Charlie. If Claire doesn't forgive him, well, I umm...will put them in New South Wales penal colony and let them hash it out in some future book? Quite possibly.

Found out only today that Elizabeth Boyle loved reading Bertrice Small and Valerie Sherwood, too, so now I must go dig out her first novel that I've had in the TBR mountain range for pretty much since it was new. Don't recall why I haven't read it before now, but it will be interesting to see if there are any influences.

There have been a couple of threads on various boards and email loops about 70s and 80s romances, and I always have a soft spot for those. I miss the sweep, the adventure and the larger than life but still believable characters that often turned up in these. I hope to bring a lot of that into my own work. Probably more in OitS than MOH, but have I mentioned I have had a book out for a whole week? Huzzah! I love getting mail from people saying they bought my book, or are going to do it. Now to finish OitS so I can enjoy the whole process over again.

Then the next phase: what book to write next?

Friday, January 06, 2006

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year...

When I was eight years old, I announced to my parents that I wanted to write love stories when I grew up. Why not? I loved Barbie and Ken, Fred and Wilma, Barney and Betty, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Rapunzel, Snow White and their respective Princes Charming. Arthur and Guinevere (sorry, Lance) and Scherezade, whose storytelling was so compelling it saved her life and won the heart of a king.

When I was eleven, a family friend published her first novel, one of the seminal historical romances. My mom read it. I wanted it. I pestered Mom until she told me the basic plot, of a Scottish girl who was kidnapped into a harem, fell in love with the sultan, and stayed there until she was much older and returned to Scotland. But I was too young to read it, so stop asking.

I did stop asking. I snuck the book instead, and when caught reading it under a brass bed with a flashlight during a power outage, announced with a straight face that I was reading it for the history and costumes. Which was much of the truth. Still too young. Snuck the next book, too. Got my own of the next, because by that time, okay, I was still young, but I'm sure Mom knew I was going to sneak it anyway. Those books called me and I had to answer. I knew that was what I wanted to read and write for the rest of my life.

Today, my first historical romance, My Outcast Heart, is officially on sale. Eight year old me is very very satisfied. Thirtycoughcoughmumble year old me says "okay, time to finish the next one." And the next and the next and the next.

Thank you, Mom, and thank you, Aunt Sunny.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

January 3rd already. Much much white stuff on the ground outside, still coming down. Gorgeous to me, and normally great for my creativity, though the kitty with whom I share my writing space can get reeeeally agitated when she sees snow falling, so blinds are drawn.

Not much actual writing done today, but writing related things, and publishing talk with other writer friends. Maybe it's an easing back into the actual work mode. As much as I love the whole Christmas and new year's time, getting back into the swing of things can be a process. Though it does help that the DH is doing the grocery shopping this evening.

Ah, the Tristan and Isolde movie trailer. Must go see that one. I never fail to find it interesting that I live a five minute walk from a multiplex and never get to see movies. Though the DVD player in the laptop makes up for that a lot.
Three more days until My Outcast Heart is available. Wheeee!