Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Not really reading anything at the moment, which always irks me. Unless reading the closed captioning on DVDs counts. That's one of my weirdnesses; I have to have the closed captioning for the hearing imparired on when I watch a DVD, if it has it. I'm not hearing imparied myself, but if I can't see the words on the screen, I get irked. Even more irked if they don't explain the incidental noises, like ::dog growling:: or ::car backfires:: or ::salsa music:: -- things like that. Yes, I can hear them, but I want it written out. Anyone who can explain why gets, ah, my undying gratitude.

I've been kind of carrying around a few different books in Hannah Howell's Highland vampire series -- bought the first one (that I read, not the first in the series) because I needed something quick to read, I'd liked all the straight Howell historicals I'd read, and surely wouldn't that outweigh the vampire stuff? I'm not much of a vampire sort of gal. (Sorry, Hannah, it's not you, it's me.) Also, I wanted to see how she handled sharing her "universe" with Lyndsay Sands -- plus I don't think the other stories by other authors are in that universe, but are still in the same anthology.

Wuh-oh, lost my train of thought for a minute there. Let's see if I can get back on. Read the first Howell story in the first HV book I bought that wasn't the first book in the series (now thumping myself for assumming that anthology pieces were not connected to each other) and feeling lost not knowing the rules of the world and such. Enjoyed the writing and characters, but who's this and what's that and why is this other thing important? Ohhhhhhhhhh, need the other books first.

'Kay, I can do that. Get another one. Nope, still too far down the line. Get what I thought was the first one in the series, but it turns out to be the second. Normally when I read a series out of order, mountains fall, puppies die, and (insert favorite actor or male model here) wakes up ugly. I'll give the puppies a dispensation on this one because now it's gotten personal. I will find out how this whole thing started if I have to scour every UBS in the area, special order online and interview the author(s) myself. Besides, I think I'll be okay with the background information here, and it seems to be the first mention of what was confusing me the most.

Then there's the bright idea I had of getting all my Howells in one place and numbering them so I can read all the Highland books (the straight historicals rather than the vamps) in order. Reread, in several cases. Found out I have a few gaps, and two copies of Highland Bride. I know the author's website says the books do not have to be read in order, that the characters are merely of the same lineage. Hannah, I do believe you, and thank you, but for me, it's like the closed captioning in the DVDs. I have to read in order, same way the only acceptable way to eat a pack of Chuckles (candy) is: orange, yellow, green, red, black. (That's from worst to best flavor, in case you take note of these things.) I need to read a series from earliest to latest, chronologically. I treat it as one long-running story, especially if multigenerational.

Hmm, although by my list here, it looks like a couple of the titles I have might possibly be one-offs (another weirdnes -- the term "standalone" gives me the willies. No idea why, so I say one-off, which is perfectly fine for me. Again, no idea why.) Maybe it's time to dive into one of those, because it's defintely comfort read time.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Me again.

At least it's within the same month, so I should get points for that. Work progresses on my Book in Seven Weeks project, though I'd like to be a bit more productive in that one.

The upside of it is that I know without a doubt that my family's Anna Is Writing Alarm works perfectly. The second I open a file or notebook with fiction in mind, a family member (two or four legged) is immediately dispatched to require my complete and undivided attention. What astounds me about this is that we do not have children.

Really. The DH and I check regularly. We open our wallets, call out "allowance time" and if nobody shows up within sixty seconds (small apartment) we figure we're safe. Which still does not rule out phone calls from various sources, a kitty who demands to lead any non-sleeping humans on a walking tour of the entire apartment because clearly that is the only way she can communicate her need for a lap from the person she was sitting inches away from a minute before, or my much-beloved spouse returning home early.

I'll admit, sometimes I stretch the boundaries to slack, but more and more, I hear my characters' voices inviting (or more realistically, ordering)me back into their worlds. It's a process at times, and sometimes the process, the application of behind to chair and fingers to keys, can be the whole point of a writing session. It's perfectly okay to spend a couple of hours on complete nonsense. Even if it doesn't go in the book, it still needs to be written.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Me again! I am alive, really. I am also alive at Unusual Historicals

My introduction went up on January 12th and I'll start with actual posts soon. I already feel right at home there.

First review for "Never Too Late" is in at The Romance Studio, and they like me, they really like me!

I have an early morning date with my laptop to make up for no writing on the weekend, but we did get to interview potential caregivers for my dad. If all goes according to plan, we may be able to get him back in his home as early as February.

Still no snow, but a good review can distract me from that, no problem.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Kara wanted a photo of Olivia kitty, so here it is. I think Olivia's choice of reading material is appropriate, since I've discovered a fabulous new blog today:


Exactly my kind of place. I'll admit my heart did a little skip when I saw Morag McKendrick Pippin as one of the bloggers.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Francesca, one of my cat-sitting charges. This photo, taken by her mum, Marilyn, reminds me of a Mucha image. No idea why. Gotta love the expression. It ties in with the Bad Cat calendar I'm using this year for my day-by-day, so I figured she was appropriate to post here today.

Again, a whole month gone by. Yikes. Can't believe it's another year already. Though I have to admit, having all these neat new Blogger toys will likely entice me to post with my former frequency. Hopefully, there will be lots to report.

This was a good New Year's weekend. Slept through the actual midnight moment, then spent the afternoon of the first at my friend Michele's house at her annual potluck/book swap thing. Very relaxing, except for the moment of white hot panic when I remembered that I will be speaking at Michele's book club next month. Erp. Room full of people who read my book. Another guest, who is a romance reader, mentioned that she's probably the only regular romance reader in the group. Guess that means My Outcast Heart is the very first romance novel most of them have read. I'm going to consider it an honor. Maybe some will want to read more, maybe some won't, but at least they'll have been exposed.