Thursday, December 29, 2005


Well, first let me say that the name of this gives me pause: According to the packaging *cough- pardon the pun that I surely didn't intend* but... Chocolate with MOXIE? In my brain, "moxie" makes me think "balls", so now I'm thinking chocolate-covered testicles. Although not an overall unpleasant thought, still not something that renders me drooling. Unless shaved, you'd have bits and pieces of little hairs pokin' out and then the "crust" that forms as chocolate dries and cracks and holy ball sac, Batman, the visual is endless.


My dear, DEAR friend eliana sent us some Choxie for Christmas. The SPICE NUT TOFFEE is to DIE for.

So, if thinking of chocolate-covered testicles is the punishment I have to endure for the savory sensation of spice nut toffee dancing across my taste-buds and awaking me with little bits of oral orgasms pinging off my teeth with each crunch, well... okay!

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Man oh MAN!

So the Art of Procrastination, which I have down to a science now, just bit me in the butt again.

Remember my posts about the small town book I was working on? I was going to call it RUMOR HAS IT (it's all about rumors in a small town). And just now on TV I heard an ad for a new movie with Jennifer Aniston in it with that title! (I don't watch much tv, so if this isn't "new", ignore that part.) I couldn't BELIEVE IT!

Coming up with titles is no easy thing - Rah! Now I gotta think of a new one for it. *grumble*cuss*grumble*

Monday, December 26, 2005

The Morning After

It's done. It's over with. And yet I know now, as I sigh deeply in relief from just the survival of it all, that I'll blink and it'll be here again before I know it. Christmas is evil that way.

Or maybe it's Time that's evil.

Or both. Yes, let's go with both.

We spent Christmas Eve at my parents this year. Usually we stay home for Christmas Eve and have Santa here at the house then pile in the car for the three hour drive to my parents. But this year, we went on Christmas Eve. We let the kids open their gifts from us that morning so we didn't have to haul them, but then they all ended up hauling 1/2 of the new stuff with them because they couldn't bear to go 1.5 days without. I guess that should be a good thing - they must have really like what they got.

One of my favorite things I got this year was this bracelet from my mother. I'll try to post a picture of it soon, since I'm sure I'll fail miserably in trying to describe it. It's got a jewel, then a tiny gold flat link. Each jewel is one of the kids' birthstones, then the plate next to it has the child's name engraved. Goes all the way around with all four kids, plus Brian. I LOVE IT. It's gorgeous and I've never seen one like it before.

Speaking of cameras, I remembered EVERYTHING I could think of for the trip, but one thing. ONE LITTLE THING. One LITTLE but MAJOR thing: My camera. So no photos. Hopefully Mom got some good shots with her digital and can email me some. I just couldn't believe of all things to forget, it was THAT. I blame being tired on that.

Or the fact that Christmas Eve morning the entire honker-ass Christmas tree here at the house fell on top of me.

I'll refrain from mentioning this is the third time that's happened to me over the years.

Merry Christmas to you all. I hope you found every blessing possible.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Bah Humbug - I heart Scrooge.

So here it is, all upon us in its tinsel glory and chocolate-fills fits of hysteria - CHRISTMAS TIME.

Like a moron, I made the mistake of going to Target today, a mere 5 days til Christmas. The parking was wicked, even with handicap plates - because they were ALL FILLED. And it was the middle of the day - what happened to people, oh, I don't know - WORKING?! It should not have been that busy. No excuses are acceptable either.

So, anyway, why was I at Target, you ask? To get a t-shirt that reads: I MAKE STUFF UP. Given the latest slew of shyt that some ugly, melting petty jealous ...*cough* woman... has been saying about me, I *almost* didn't get it. But that would be giving her way too much power of me, and she's way too freakin' ugly (both inside and out) to do that, right? Right. Anyway, I heard about it on the chick-lit loop and had to have it. And yeah, baby, I GOT IT! And I didn't get beaten or bloodied while in the store either.

So here I am, in my cute, rockin' new t-shirt, and I'm printing off a gazillion labels for Christmas cards. This is, by far, THE latest I've ever sent them out. I got all the names printed from the message board (about 35 total) and then I went to get my address book to print off the family ones. Cept, yanno, I can't find the freakin' address book!!!! I have to mail them tomorrow to get them out on time. Gah - writer's procrastination bit me in the ass with freakin' CHRISTMAS CARDS!!!!

If you were my address book, where would you be?

Monday, December 19, 2005

Don't Eat the Yellow Snow!!!

Snow Pee

I've written my name with pee in the snow. My life is complete - I can die now.

A special thanks to kitten for the link. I think. Or she needs to be beaten, not sure which.<

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Well, it's 1am, but...

It was a semi-productive day.

I took Squishy Baby to school, telling the teacher about the incident and the shaking and stuff. By 10am, she called. He was shaking and dizzy and walking crooked again, and she was so freaked she CARRIED him to the nurse. I decided that was IT. I mean, he's #4, right? I've been through all kinds of stuff with the others, I'm a pretty good judge of what requires a doctor and what doesn't. But after five days since the incident, I was getting kind of worried, and I didn't want my "I'm a mom for years" mentality to really screw up my kid. So we headed off to the ER.

They did a CT Scan and also a chest xray to check for pneumonia since he had a bad cough. I'm relieved to say that both were fine. I didn't break the boy! YAY! He has a slight ear infection, but the doctor didn't think that was enough to make the way he walked so weird, or cause such drastic dizziness. BUT, he said the slight ear infection COMBINED with the head trauma was. So there ya go. He wanted him to stay home til Friday, but said if he was up to it, he could go back tomorrow.

Now this is the crappy part - this is THE best week of school for the entire year for elementary school kids. High school sucks this time of year - semester finals, which Shandie is cussing greatly over (figure of speech.) Tonight as we were decorating the three, there were about 5 ornaments Sydney had made last year. Cooper only has one so far, because he's been out all this week. Syd was so upset over that, she wanted to take some of hers down. One of her tender moments - as few as they are - now recorded in history. On top of that, we buy them an ornament each year. I haven't found THE ONE yet for Cooper for this year, so he only had three plus the one from school. Shandie and Carly had a crapload. Syd even had a good number - 5th Christmas and all the ones from school last year and this year. So poor little dude was like, "This mine? What about this one?" I finally started letting him hang up just anything. He was happy with that.

So yes, that brings me to this: THE TREE IS UP AND DECORATED! Finally! Whew! And I stayed up (as you can see) and got rest of the gifts wrapped. I'm almost back on schedule!!!

Now tomorrow I have to finish cleaning and I have to have lunch with Carly because I can't make it to her class party on Friday, because Friday I have TWO school parties I have to attend: Syd's and Cooper's. Both at the same time. Ugh. And, with Syd's, I have to bring cupcakes. Ugh again. Now, am I going to be smart and just buy some to take? Or am I going to let my anal-perfectionism kick my ass further by making them from scratch? I'm guessing the latter, but I'm so worn out I just may go with store bought. Plus, they'd all get like a cool little cheap-ass plastic ring or something that'd come on the top. How's that for justification.

I'll let ya know what I do.

Man, it's good to be blogging again.

AND, I'm hoping after Christmas to start blog-hopping again. And writing fulltime like I've said I'd do. The slump sucked - time to get on with it, right? Right.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005


I'm running on empty, and fast. Today is Wednesday. Tomorrow is early out for the high school and Friday is packed with a Pre-K Christmas Party, a Kindergarten Christmas Party, and a middle-school Christmas Party, and then school out by 1pm. Umm, okay. That's doable. NOT.

Straight from school on Friday afternoon, we're heading up to DFW with a stop by Cameron to pick up B. So that means I have to do the following between now and Friday morning:

Finish the freakin' tree. It's up, but not remotely decorated.
Finish wrapping presents.
Finish SHOPPING for the presents I've forgotten, which, btw, include three teacher gifts.
(Go to the crafters mall to look for teacher gifts)
Finish laundry for this weekend's trip.
Finish cleaning.
Pack for six.

And the WORST part is that this morning, I realized I won't get to sleep in until MONDAY! And only then because it'll be Christmas Break for the kids. I have sleep issues. I need my sleep. I crave my sleep. Right now, though, there's just no TIME to sleep. And right now, I'm seriously hating B's job that keeps him away 72 hours at a time. ~sigh~

I'd stay longer and whine more, but yanno, I got stuff to do and I'm quickly running out of time to get it done. This is the first year I've ever felt the "pressures" of Christmas, and I'm really starting to understand why adults never seemed to like the holidays when I was growing up.

If you think homemade cookies are on the list, ha! Slice and bake, baby!

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

My Little Squishy

Remember that line from FINDING NEMO? Dory loved her little squishy, yanno, until it zapped her. Dang jellyfish anyway.

Well, I apparently tried to make my own Little Squishy. Since January, my kids have wanted to go to Chuck E. Cheese that they built and I kept putting if off - "Yeah, okay, by the end of the year." Well, the kids called it on me: End of the year is almost here and I hadn't taken them yet.

Fine. Git in the van then.

The big teenager, Ms. Angst, stayed home. So it was me, the 11 year old mini-me named Carly, the heathenistic 5 year old daughter Sydney, and the angel boy, 4 year old Cooper. We drive to the next town, and although it was already 7pm, the place was pretty packed. We parked, and the way the van was angled, the nose of the van faced downhill.

I get the kids out. We're right next to the mall, so I'm being careful with the two tiny ones to stay by me. I go to nudge the sliding door, since gravity will pull it rest of the way closed.

Yanno that saying about an object in motion tends to STAY in motion? That's true. In case you were wondering.

At the last minute, as I watched the sliding door zip shut, Cooper puts his head back in. I watched as the van door slammed into the side of his head, pushing it against the frame on the opposite side, causing his head to be smashed in the door.

It was like slow motion. My hand was trying to grab on to stop it, but it really was just like watching helplessly. It seemed to go on forever when in fact it was less than a second. I had this flash in my brain that he was suspended between the door and the frame and the moment I got it open, he'd collapse.

He didn't. He screamed. He cried. I tried to load the kids up into the van to go to the ER, but Cooper wiped his tears and said, "I fine." (He's working on "I'm".) He's got a knot on the side of his head and a small scratch, and that's it.

Mom aged twenty years instantly. He went inside and rocked with Chuck E. Cheese for two hours. Now we call him, "My Little Squishy", to which he replies, "MoooOOOooom!!!"

Monday, December 12, 2005

Dude, where's your blog?

Umm, right here. And I'm back.

A mighty big thank you to Mr. Doyle. He knows why.

To those that emailed, thank you. I'm very appreciative of your support and concern. I had a lot of stuff going on here at home but I think it's all been straightened out now. At least, I hope so.

So it's now less than two weeks til Christmas. I don't even have my tree up. I did finish my shopping earlier this year than before, then realized I hadn't gotten three gifts I needed. But this is, hands down, the latest I've ever spent in getting the house decorated. We finally got the lights on the outside of the house today and rearranged the living room and deep cleaned it, so that was good. Now I'm staring at the new arrangement wondering where to put the freakin' tree.

Ho freakin' ho ho.

No, I did NOT call you a freakin' ho just now - I have someone else I'd call that, not you. So no worries.

Anyway, in addition to re-activating my poor neglected blog, we've opened up the forums on the website. I hope you register and come and meet us. There's only a few really active ones right now, but we're building and literally everyday someone new comes along. Mostly women, but we do have a few guys in there, including the Infamous D. Check it out if ya get the hankerin'.

I need to go and spread some holiday cheer - with my bat.

I look forward to reconnecting with you all again soon. And yes, I've started writing again. Woot!

Friday, November 04, 2005

Checking In

So, I'm thinking that Janet Evanovich shouldn't be Satan anymore, so I needed a new post, but man, I'm craving a Ranger fix something fierce. Gah!

I haven't been blogging as I should. I haven't done anything like I should. Ready for my newest excuse? I'm waiting on a laptop. If I only had a laptop, I could write!

I'm on Day 4 of NaNo, in which I was supposed to do 2,000 words a day. How many have I done? SEVEN. Total. Nope, that's not a typo. I suck.

I need to call my awesome webguy John back, but I haven't gotten around to doing that either. I need to do a crapload of things, but am I? Nooooo. I don't know why. Those that have been with me for months now are used to my stupid funks, but this is getting just downright ridiculous.

Monday I AM starting a new schedule. This weekend, tomorrow, to be exact, I'm stopping smoking. God help us all. My brain just feels cloudy, and I can't figure out what I need to do to clear it out.

Good news though - I know who the ever-mysterious D is. And it's rockin' good news, too. Even though he was a butthead to tease me like that for months on end.

So, I'm going to TRY to blog more often. Maybe that'll get my mind rolling in a writing and yet positive direction. I did just spend some time re-reading some posts back from May. That kinda spurred me into really missing the blog and the thoughts that I put down and the freedom of yammering away to whomever is willing to listen, whomever isn't tired of my excuses and my total and complete lack of self-discipline. Ugh.

I do miss my interactions with you guys. I hope you haven't deserted me yet.

~much love~

Friday, October 21, 2005

Janet Evanovich is Satan

So I'm reading the Plum series, right? Well, if I know something's in a certain order, I want to read it in that order. Nice and simple. I got through #3, but I didn't have 4 & 5, so I stopped for several weeks.

Then came my birthday.

Shari, a servant of Satan disguised as a soft-spoken, kind angel, gets me 1st editions of FOUR TO SCORE and HIGH FIVE. I finished #4 at 2:30am on Wednesday morning. Started #5 at 11pm and finished it at 4:30am yesterday morning. Yes, straight through. Well, I had 6 on up, so with those two out of the way, I have free clearance for the rest of the series already. Last night, I picked up HOT SIX. Started at 11pm - finished at 3am.

Did I mention Janet Evanovich is Satan? I'm exhausted - way more so than normal. But man, she so does feed my addiction in a binder kind of way.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

So it's 1:30am...

The morning of my birthday, and what am I doing? I'm glad you asked.

I read nightly, sometimes way late into the night. Tonight was no exception. I got done about 12:30 and although I wasn't very tired, I knew I would be in the morning, so I made myself stay in bed rather than get up and get online. Proud moment there for me - as you can see, that moment has PASSED!

I'm laying there, and BOOM! New book, new premise, new characters, all popping up like freakin' pop-up windows on an aol site. One right after another, from book name to character names, to full fledged conversations - quirks, secondary characters, jobs, all of it, within 30 minutes from start to finish. After the idea of the book popped up, I was like, "Yeah, okay, that's neat. Go to sleep." Ha. I don't listen very well...

The more I laid there, the more scenes flowed through my brain like a movie. I've never had all of it hit like this, all at once and this fast. It's leaving me breathless and giddy with eager anticipation. The best part, or maybe the worst, is that it's part autobiographical, once the idea emerged. And the idea emerged for one simple reason: It's my birthday. For as long as I can remember, my first thought for each birthday was about my birth mother. Wondering about her, wondering if she was remembering the date and wondering about me.

I've since found her, and in doing so, found a part of myself that I'd hunted for so freakin' long. Answers fell into place immediately. Some of the situation was just a creepy, surreal thing. And in thinking of her, and our journey to finding each other, all of the above just flew into place.

I just had to share it with someone. My birthday present to myself when I wake up? Start my story and tell that particular tale. I've wanted to do it for a long, long time, but never really had a clue as to how to go about it without it being totally autobiographical. But boom - in one night, in the span of half an hour, a short contemporary flew out at me. I simply reached out my greedy little hand and grabbed on.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Today is the last day

that I get to be in my mid-thirties, according to my children. Tomorrow, I venture into my LATE thirties, at 36. (sigh) Happy freakin' birthday. Candles? Yeah, blow this.

So what have I been doing lately? Not a lot. Two weeks ago I had pneumonia, which was weird. I get it yearly, but usually not until November or January, so it hit me early this year. NOW I'm sick again, just two weeks later. Full blown fever, aches, chills, sore throat, blah blah blah. I think my immune system must be whacked or something - not sure. I think I may actually be making a doctor's appointment this time though.

What have I been up to? Well, I was working, believe it or not. I was rocking on revisions and got to Chapter Six where I decided that a scene I'd cut would be good to put back. Of course, I can't FIND that scene anywhere, so it looks like I'll have to totally recreate it. No biggie, really, but it definitely halted the momentum I was having at the time. In addition to that, I've started two more books, and I have resources lined up for research I need for one, so when the time comes, I'll be ready.

Bad news, kinda, I guess. I had started a rom-com like six months ago targeted for Blaze. I just started a Blaze last night that has a lot of the general principles behind it. Rah. Figures. I wonder if they'll be interested in mine or not, if they'll think, "Yeah, too close to what (insert author's name here) did." Guess we'll have to see, eh? It's not like mine's finished, but dang it... it still chaps my ass, and in a really bad way, too.

AND, I got character profiles done for one of my books. Sounds like nothing much, but we're talking a single title rom-com set in a small town. Profiles for like 30 characters. No small task. I think I may have mentioned that before on the blog, but not for sure. It's the fever.

AND (notice a trend yet?) I got a new chapter for a new book done, and a premise for yet another one (that's what? Eight WIPs? I'm so screwed in the head. Note to self: ask birth mother if she did bad drugs while pregnant.) One of the things I'm doing is creating folders for each project so if I come across something, or create something, I can put it in the folder. One of them I just came up with a catchy title, nothing more - but I created a folder for it anyway. Makes it more real or something. At least to me. But, as noted above, my brain ain't right anyway.

My critique partner, Chris Keach is entering some contests, and sent me the first six chapters of her book to line edit. I'm 1/2 way through that - hoping to finish tonight. I haven't worked on it in a couple of days because I've been too busy drooling in sleep through a fever. Bad me.

And on top of allllllllllllll of that, I'm still finishing up craft orders (afghans and ponchos - Martha Stewart poncho anyone?!). My poor little fingers, worked to the bone. I need a pacifier to shut up the whinin', huh? LOL

On the Hooter's T-shirt front, more news: B has TWO BLACK ONES as well as the white signed one. No, these two aren't signed, but on the back, they say, "More than a mouthful."

Yeah, I got a mouthful for him. And a shredder with HOOTERS written on it. I made a comment, and he said, "Wow, I've never know you to be so insecure."

Yeah, that's what it's about. My insecurities. Not his mentality and taste in clothing... noooooooooooo. Shoot me now.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Give it to me, baby!

I'm wanting to build a section of my writing craft library on characterization. Tell me the best you've found on this, if you don't mind! I love using recommendations!

Fall Candy

Halloween sucks major when you're on Weight Watchers. Thought I'd share that with you, in case you didn't know.

Yanno those mini-Reeses Cups? They should be illegal. They're like CRACK.

Hooters, it's not just a restaurant anymore

So B, my husband, is 42. That's got to be on the brain. Keep that stewing in the background, for this story. And I swear on the lives of my four kids that this story is, sadly, 100% true.

B has this Hooters shirt that he had SIGNED by the waitresses. Am I kidding? No, I am not. He never wore it because he didn't want to LOSE the signatures in the washing machine. Whatever.

One day, B runs out of t-shirts and reluctantly puts on The Hooter. I happily wash it. The freakin' signatures stay. And thus, a monster is created.

So here he comes out of the bedroom, doning this ... thing. On his way to the BANK. The bank where he has to go INSIDE to sign some papers. I said, "You're wearing that to the bank?"

He looks down at his shirt like he has no idea what I'm talking about. "Yeah, why?"

I said, "It's like something an immature 18 year old would wear, all excited about his fraternity's drunk night out with buckets of hotwings."

And he says, totally straight-faced, "Well, you have to remember I was only 32 when I got it."

ONLY THIRTY-TWO! Like that's some youthful number that'll explain away this ... this ... holy hell, I can't even come up with a good term for that thing. I simply stare. You know, that look that is totally blank, that look that can only be described as, "I have no response to that."

And I stood there thinking, This is what my life has become.

He goes to the bank. He returns. I said, "What did Justin think of your shirt?" (Bank guy). He said, "How'd you know he said something?"

Gee. I wonder.

Drawing the Line

When do you scrap it all? When do you look at a manuscript and think, "No way in hell"? I have a manuscript like that right now. The premise of the story is good, I love the characters, but there's SOMETHING in it that's just not ringing true to my "voice" and it's drivin' me NUTS.

My goal is to revise a chapter a day. Considering the revisions this book needs, that's a lot of writing. I won't be a total idiot - it could end up being a chapter per two days, and even at that, we're talking two weeks to get it done. The first three chapters have been revised so many times, I shudder to think of each chapter taking as long as those three did.

Here's the problem: I have two people wanting to see the work. One's an agent, one's an editor. And since it IS a good story and it DOES have good characters, and since people DO want to read it, I can't find myself able to walk away from it. So I guess I oughtta stop bitchin' about it and get the revisions done. I mean, I won't really know how good it is until it's finished, right?


Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Chaos reigns. As usual.

So I actually went to do a blog update the other day. Typed out this incredibly long thing and hit PUBLISH. THEN I got a message saying blogger was doing maintenace. Figures.

So this past weekend was supposed to be the KOD Writing Retreat. Well, Rita - bitch that she was - decided to change those plans. There was this crazy paranoia in my town. I was at Walmart and thought maybe I should get some more oil for my lamps I have, some water maybe. I'm not one to really prepare for things (shocking revelation, isn't it?). Well, there was no lamp oil to be found. Or oil LAMPS. Or water. Or batteries. It was crazy. While there, they announce that they just received some water. This mad rush to the back of the store to get some fed into me, and I found myself in line. What they had were the cases of water where you get like 24 sport bottles. I got one (limit one per person, and of course, I was alone.) Then some people tried to STEAL it. It was soooooo unreal. So there I was, with one little case of water for the six of us. Well, seven, because Shari already booked her flight for this retreat, so she decided to come for a visit anyway (more on that in a bit), no batteries, no oil for my oil lamps. I did get gas - and that night, our town ran out of gas! It was really, really weird.

And then Rita changed course and we didn't get a DROP of rain. Figures. I'm so taking back that case of water.

As I mentioned, my fab fav buddy Shari came to visit. And I got sick.

Like... WAY sick. Unending breathing treatments, drugging myself with Xanax and Flexeril to force my chest muscle to relax and not spasm in an attempt to breathe. After two days of that - I finally got better. How fun for Shari, right? Needless to say, we watched a lot of movies.

I did get the revisions from her for the first two chapters of LIES, so that's good. I'm hoping tonight to revise Chapter 3. Once that's done, I can send it to those that requested it. And, the really fun part (at least I thought it was fun) were the character sketches we created one day. B was home from work that day, and omg ... not only is he not a reader, he's firmly established in our minds that he'll never be a writer either. However, his completely clueless comments provided a crapload of entertainment for the two of us. SCANDAL is really coming alive, and it's really looking good. On top of those two projects, I also reopened FORESHADOWED, and it's got great possibilities and I'm encouraged by the progress I've made, as little as said progress is at the moment.

I've set some goals, both long term and short term. Short term: Sell by Nationals. If not that, then at least have an agent shopping my stuff. Which means I gotta boogey bigtime. Long term goals: I want to write for more than one house, and I'm plotting and planning books specifically to target certain houses. I hope that little plan works. Even if it doesn't, it's a plan, right? Right. I love when you agree with me.

Other news? Hmm. Oh! Just found out today that Jayne Ann Krentz has a blog! It's really great, so check it out. And for those of you that posted on my thingy about your blogs being added to my blogroll, I'll have that updated soon. Promise. Also, if you have sites you like to visit, let me know! I'll be happy to add them, too. If you find them interesting, I bet we will, too.

Of course, a little reminder that my website is up. It's still got some work to go, and there are forums that are kind of neat. I'm not really active there yet, but hope to be soon. Don't forget to check out Romance Divas for new and cool stuff and just for support in this really odd profession.

And I'm really, really, really going to try my best to not only post here regularly, but also return to blog hopping. I miss that sooooooo much. So what's new with you guys? Update me!

I'm about to hit PUBLISH POST. I swear, if it messes up again, I'm going postal. My dad was a postman for 35 years. He trained me well. Redneck Texas Postal. That would NOT be pretty, I'm a'thinkin'.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Check out Romance Divas!!!

Free Workshop with Author Of The Month Candace Havens:

Candace Havens presents Fast Draft: How to write your first draft in two weeks. Really.

Week of September 18th, 2005

Fast Draft is way to get through the terror of the first draft in a fast and efficient manner. Why draw it out over several months, when you can have a first draft in just two weeks? Using creative techniques you'll learn how to write more pages a day than you ever thought possible. This class works for new writers as well as seasoned professionals, and allows writers to flesh out a story fast to see if it will work.

Q & A with Deidre Knight:

During the week of Sept 18th, Super Agent Deidre Knight will be answering questions in a special section of the forum aptly titled, "Ask Deidre". Don't miss this opportunity to get those questions answer and get to know this fabulous woman!

See you online!

Sunday, September 11, 2005

The Big Apple

I want to visit New York City. I've always wanted to visit there, but I've never had the opportunity or funds for that particular adventure.

I'd like New Orleans. I always wanted to visit there, too. I've been to Baton Rouge, but only for like two hours and no sight seeing, but New Orleans has such a rich history - it's been on the list of places to visit for a long time. And both places, NY and NO, are often used as settings for novels.

Now both have been changed drastically - I wish I could have seen the Twin Towers. And of course, it's going to be a long time coming before New Orleans is back on its feet, and I'm sure even then, some things just won't be the same. Just like New York won't ever be the same.

But regardless of waiting to go until after the faces of these cities have changed, I still really want to go. I don't know if I'd like NY full-time. The noise, the darky scary places, and public transportation. I'm not used to those things. I'm originally from Dallas/Ft. Worth, but it's not like NY. We all had our own cars. True, we had cabs and buses, but there was never a reason for me to use them. I'd had a car since I was 15. I just drove where I wanted to be.

I went to Chicago once for a FABULOUS weekend. And when I packed, I put that new (at the time) hand gel sanitizer in my purse. The idea of public transportation freaked me out a bit. I mean, you hear about what happens on subways and heck, even in cabs. That's like infection just waiting to happen. So I packed my gel and then had the person I laughed at me for three days over it. Admittedly, I didn't use it as much as I'd thought, but just in case, I was ready.

When I stayed in Chicago that long weekend, we'd go out and it would be 3am and the city was still wide awake and people everywhere. I was shocked when I realized how late it was one night - it seemed like maybe 10pm with the amount of people still milling around the city sidewalks. That's how I imagine NYC to be. After all, isn't it called "The city that never sleeps"? But for a visit, for a long weekend, I bet it'd be so exciting to see all the places I've read about. I just read Julie Kenner's THE GIVENCHY CODE and she mentions such lovely places: The Plaza, Grand Central Station, St. Patrick's Catherdal. *le sigh*

The more I read about NYC, the more I forget about things like subways, muggings, etc., and think of the delicious things like Madison Avenue and all the shops there.

Of course, I'd need about $100,000 to TRULY enjoy myself.

Do you have a place like that? One that you'd never really wanted to visit, but then reading about it made you want to go REALLY REALLY badly?

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Break out the chorus of angels!

I wrote.

22 pages.

And now B is making dinner so I don't have to stop - and I didn't even ask him to. Apparently, the mental drought is over. Of the requested material, a full chapter just went out to my CP Shari for feedback and a lot of red ink. Now that I started again, I can't seem to stop. And I owe you all here for not giving up on me.

So a super special thanks to all of you here that put up with my whining and excuses and moaning of life in general, especially Allison and her scary boots, Chris and D, who probably know me the best and knew what to say to punch my ass in gear. Of course, I'm not 100% sure how well D knows me, since he refuses to tell me a name.

Also special thanks to Bryan Roth, evil poet extraordinaire, Dadio, Gary Brand, LE for his patience and unwaivering belief that I'll succeed, and MAF with his repeated attempts to shrink me. You guys rock.

I'd linger, but I'm being beckoned by a story to tell. Hee!

Well, I think I may have found the ticket

I finally went blog hopping today. It's been like a month since I did that. I should have known it would help - reading other writers and seeing what all they're going through, and it's so nice to know I'm not alone in my misery of non-writing.

Last night I thought a lot about this subject. Thought about what my friends were saying, what people were writing here, and what the voice in my head wanted me to hear. It boils down to this: I want to be a published author. I really, really truly want that.

And there's only one way to get it. Period. I must write, and I must write well. I thought about the different works I have in progress, from the one that's finished and needing revising to the ones that are started to the ones I've got just floating around in my stormy little brain. Although some are quite daunting and make me want to curl up on the couch again, a couple of others were so relieved to see light shining down on them, acknowledging their existance again, more little scenes for them started popping up.

One of the things I'm going to start to do is writing down scenes. Right now, I write from beginning to ending. Maybe I shouldn't. Maybe I should just write the scenes as they come from whatever story they emerge out of. I think it's that perfectionism again, wanting to do it a certain way, even if it's painful and my instinct is saying to STOP doing it that way, or believing that that way is the ONLY way. If I allow myself to write a scene, even if it's in the last 3/4 of the book, that may prompt even more writing. Maybe. Heck, at the rate I'm going now, it sure wouldn't hurt to try it that way, right??

I'd sit and chat, but I have some writing I need to do. I'll report back later with my progress.

Thank you all. Yes, even you, D. ~razz~

If you visit here and

I don't have your name on my blog roll, please PLEASE let me know so I can add it.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

As requested

I was talking on the phone with Dadio who does my webdesign (and it's fabulous! Check it out!! And he's available!!!) and bemoaning my lack of writing lately, including on the blog. It's so sweet, really, the amount of people trying to help me break through with what my problem with this may be. I'm indebted forever.

One of the things I mentioned to him was that I had written my only completed novel on the laptop, not on the PC. It's a wicked cheap laptop, can't get online or do ANYTHING really but type on it, but the problem with it is the keys. You have to literally PUNCH down each letter. It's not a fast thing to type on by any stretch of the imagination.

Then a dear friend of mine GAVE me a 17" monitor. And I got back my super comfy, super cool leather office chair. I had transferred all of my writing stuff to the PC so I could sit here and type it all out - big screen, cool chair, all comfy and easier to mail out to critiquers since I don't have to save to disk then send, etc.

But now I don't know. Maybe being away from the computer area is what's holding me back. I sure don't intend to use that laptop anymore - talk about carpal tunnel with shoving those keys down. I tried my alpha smart, but with the tiny window it was kind of driving me nuts. Maybe I need to get that out again and see. Maybe just moving away from this area of my house, where I spend SO much time as it is, would help me break through this wicked stage.

It's not writer's block. My brain is still going a billion miles an hour with that stupid first chapter revision and with the other stories I've started. It's just that there's no DESIRE. I know I have to write anyway - at all costs, I MUST WRITE. Even if it's crap, I need to write. But just the idea of opening up WORD to write right now makes tears form.

As you know, I don't get any support here at home regarding my writing. If anything, I think it bugs the crap outta him that I have this "little hobby" at all. Thankfully, I don't give a rat's ass what he thinks, but still, it doesn't make for a happy writing environment, especially if he's on his off days (3 days at a time.)

Everyone I talk to (and trust me, it's a lot, apparently, that are concerned over this) says I'm making up excuses. Yes, I am. I know I am. But that doesn't change the desire to start writing. I can't even get through craft books I so desperately wanted to read. I can't hardly BLOG anymore, as you all know. Dadio thought maybe I was burned out. I laughed and said, "Hell, I'm CRISPY!"

Like Chris said in an email to me, I was the one that wouldn't be satisfied. I'd read and re-read, changing constantly even though she and Shari would say it was good to go out. You all know the fear of putting yourself out there for possible rejection, but so do I. This isn't a new thing for me - I've been rejected a thousand times. (SLIGHT exaggeration, but you know what I mean.) Maybe it's perfectionism. When I wrote the other day, and it was so, so SO bad, maybe because it wasn't clicking and it sucked I decided to just let it die away. If it can't be perfect, then maybe I don't want it. Which would be incredibly stupid thinking - no one sits down and writes a final draft out of the gate - of COURSE it's not going to be perfect. So maybe that's not it.

Maybe I'll just sit down and write nothingness. That's what started my last novel. It originally opened with, "She sat down at the keyboard and let her fingers fly over the keys, her brain flooded with ideas that needed to break free. She had no idea where to start, so she just let her brain tell her where she needed to go." And from that, I ended up with a 100K word novel. Of course, I later went in and took all that crap out. But that IS how it started. Maybe that's my thing - I have to type that jibberish before I find the substance.

So here's another rambling blog entry. I'm sure I wouldn't have bothered if Dadio hadn't practically threatened me to do it. (grin) I'm teasing you, John! But he's right - at least I'm writing SOMETHING.

Tomorrow is a brand new day. Maybe I can approach it with a brand new mentality. Maybe I just need to cry until there are no more tears to wring from my body. Maybe I need to run away, where I don't have to worry about money, or kids, or marriage, or laundry or dishes or anything else under the sun. Maybe it's time to just...escape.

At least into a good book from my own mind.

Monday, September 05, 2005

Yes, I'm still breathing...

Many thanks to those that have written me wondering where I am. Unfortunately, Karyn, no, I haven't been busy writing. I've been busy doing nothing.


Well, I did join Weight Watchers. So I guess that's something, right?

My funk is still here. I can't write. I tried to write one day, and it was such crap - I mean, even two days later it was crap. I try to read craft books, to spur me on or something, and I can't even concentrate on the page, much less take notes. I have been sick the last few days, but even that's not an excuse since it's been almost a month since I was going to start writing fulltime. I just don't know...

My critique partner is ready to send me yet another manuscript. I told her I'd be all over it - it's not like I'm doing anything else, right? This was her reply (hope you don't mind, Chris.) "You were always the aggressive one willing to work on her manuscript until it was the best you could do no matter what anyone else said!"

What's happened to me? I have no idea. I'm not even visiting writing blogs anymore - I'm not replying on the writing email loops anymore. I've got my wonderful, beautiful site up and going (Dadio - you do so rock!) and yet...nothing. What will it take to get my ass in gear again? I have no idea. If I KNEW, really knew what was wrong, I'd fix it. But...I don't. I don't know. I just feel... hmm... lost. I'm floating around, with no destination, no hope, just seeing where time takes me and not being in control over it. I'm like a heroine that's too dumb to live.

In just a couple of weeks, Shari's flying down and we'll be attending the KOD Writing Retreat in San Antonio. One of the things they just said in an email was to bring a work in progress and highlighters. Holy crap - I have nothing to show them. NOTHING. I haven't worked on anything. Deidre Knight wanted my stuff and I'm too much a loser to get it done and to her. And now the KOD thing is coming up and all I feel is panic, and Evan Fogelman is going to be there!!!

I have a feeling that if I don't get my brain wrapped around this problem soon, I'm going to miss too many opportunities and I'll have killed my own career before it even got started.

I have nothing to contribute to the great literary blog world today. More than anything, I wanted to let you know that I'm still here, but still not writing. Maybe tomorrow morning I'll be able to blog hop and see what the rest of you fabulous people are doing, and that'll jump start me into some kind of motivation over *something*. Hell, over ANYTHING.

Thanks for hangin' in there with me. You guys are the best support anyone could dream of...

Friday, August 26, 2005

Another Day in Paradise


This post is in reply to the wonderful support I got in the comments from the last post. I'd typed it out, realized it was super long, so decided to post it here instead.

I knew I wasn't alone in my thinking. So many of us writers are mothers and wives so you'd understand my guilt with a messy house and my sitting at the keyboard. Today I did get some heavy cleaning done. MADE myself, but I did it, and now I'm glad. It was just after 10am when I finished, so not only did I have most of the day to myself before picking up the kids, but I felt lighter knowing I could do whatever I wanted with the good feeling that something on the house was actually done.

And it may not be so wicked if I was actually PRODUCING something - but alas, I'm not. I can't even get my brain into the IDEA of writing. I think of the scenes constantly though, so maybe my sub-conscious is working on something and I just don't know it yet.

Randy - it's interesting you say that about changing to single-spacing to get the juices flowing again (Whoa - sounds like something from a Blaze!!). When I first started writing, I knew nothing - including page format and double spacing and all that jazz. Now I have it set up to do 25 lines per page in Courier New 12 pt. BUT, when I started revisions the other day, I couldn't get that damn page set up right. (Yes, the revisions are so bad that they require a from-the-start-kinda revising.) I spent an hour getting madder and madder over FORMATTING. I should have said, "Screw it" and just started writing and then went back and fixed the format. However, by the time I got to writing, I got 5 pages done and they were crap and then I felt defeated. (sigh) Next time, I'll do what you said: Set it to single-spacing and just WRITE.

Kacey - you're evil!!! And I believe your threat of checking up on me!!!

Good news. I was laying on the couch just now and wallowing in self-doubt and the overall blahs, but I finally checked on the blog (can you say SPAM anyone? Gah! I get them in email and now they rape my blog, too.) Anyway, just reading what you guys said, such encouragement, and then typing this reply has my brain working again, so I think I'll dig out one of the craft books I've wanted to study and get at it. You guys ROCK!

Thursday, August 25, 2005

I think I'm in a funk

or something similarly nasty.

I started the revisions on one of the requested books - the first book I did. I realized through a lot of editing and contests and crap like that that I'd lost my voice in it. It's still there, but later in the book which hadn't been picked to little bloody pieces yet. In addition to that, my heroine, Liz, is letting life happen to her, not doing something about it.

Here's the problem with that: I'm Liz. Liz has a lot of my baggage from my first husband (In the book, that's Jake. In real life, that's Jon.) I was so close to the heroine that all those insecurities came through loud and clear. So I took a step back and thought, "Okay, what if I had a chance to relive my life with Jon?" What would I do different? Liz had to be more determined than ever not to let Jake screw with her again (Jon was really into mental warfare - long story.) I had to take that attitude that's always been innately me (although he tried to kill it - here's the ironly - HE is dead now.) All that to say this: I DID START THE REVISIONS. After a year, I started actively writing again.

And it sucked. I mean, really sucked. Even Shari, who would NEVER say, "Bren, this sucks," said, "'s not your best."

That's Shari speak for THIS SUCKS!

Tomorrow is the end of week two for school being in session. Remember that little goal of mine, writing EVERYDAY while the kids were at school? Yeah - that hasn't been happening. Worst yet, I can say, "See? I knew I'd start writing just to realize I don't have the talent to think I can do this." I proved myself right.

But on the other hand, I'm such a tenacious bitch. Do I give up like a normal person? Nooooooooo, I have to go and prove myself wrong. So no, I'm not giving up.

I also decided that the huge mountains of clutter I have surrounding me are mentally giving me the shaft. My desk has different levels. Of stuff. Top layer is more of "this week's crap" and the layers under that level are for various different weeks or whatever. I'm not organized at all. My house is a wreck, and I feel like crap if I write while my house is in shambles. How can I be so selfish to sit at the computer for hours on end and ignore the house which my kids live in?

So, B's off for the next three days. I'm using it to whip this house in order. I did decide to have a garage sale again (which is quite funny since I don't have a garage), so okay, maybe a YARD sale. I didn't do one last year. Instead, I donated it all. I gave so many boy clothes to my cousin. I mean, we're talking a 27" tv box SHOVED FULL of everything a little boy would ever, ever need. I didn't even get a thank you or any acknowledgement at all that she'd received it. So then all I could think about was how much money I lost by not resaling it. Not again! I'm yard saling. (I think I just made up that word.)

So that gives me a PURPOSE. I'll use my neglected craft room and move anything for resale to that space and get it out of the living spaces. I'll declutter my house, and hopefully in the process, I'll declutter my brain.

Then come Monday, my brain will be able to write. I think. I hope. I'm so depressed over the pages I wrote that I have zero motivation - whether or not an agent is waiting to read it, or even to blog. That's pathetic.

In the meantime, I have worked on the new website with Dadio - and it's looking REALLY good. And I've read like five novels just in this week alone. I started the Stephanie Plum series of Evanovich. I have the first 11 of them, all but 4 & 5. I'm almost done with #3, so I gotta start lookin' to get me #4.

And I'm going to try to blog DAILY. It seems to get my brain thinking instead of staring at nothingness. I swear, nothing is as depressing as a blank white sheet staring at you from Word.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

What Kind of Crappy Gift Are You?

So someone posted this little test to see what kind of crappy gift you are. I took said test, and this was my result:

You are a losing lottery ticket. Full of hope and promise, but in the end, just a cheap let down.


Take it and let me know I'm not alone! Post what you are!

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

I so suck, and CF is up my butt

And in a really bad way, at that.

So I'm on Day Two of my own self-appointed Date To Start Writing Fulltime.

It's not going well.

Yesterday, I took a nap. The house was quiet, and I was exhausted. Then I had to run an errand, and by the time I got done, it was time to start the afternoon school run. Then I was gone most of the late afternoon/evening doing another school supply run, because the older two girls didn't even get their "real" lists until AFTER school started. Let me tell ya, Walmart is a nightmare the afternoon of the first day of school. We should get the stuff free - like hazzard pay.

So then there's today. At 9:30, CF (Control Freak - he's an attorny, so he can't help it - really) called for the first time in awhile. I'd sent him a schedule of what I'd hoped my days alone would be like. Being the total moron I am, I had put 9am - 2pm "Write, write, write". He, being ever so benevolent, said I should only make it 9-1. It's shameful how quickly I agreed.

So by 9:30 this morning, he THEORETICALLY should have been interrupting my writing, right? Yeah. Right. Hmm. Well, I was doing writing STUFF. I was reading about writing collages and pondering if that was something I wanted to try. I was reading different things different authors had said about the pros of doing it. In my I'm-left-handed-brain, that's WORKING because it has to do with WRITING. Right? Of course! CF disagreed.

Apparently, when I wrote "Write, write, write", he took it literally. We hung up the phone five minutes later, with a "I'm calling you back at 1:00 for a report back on how many pages you got done. And no lying about it either."

Gah! Does the man know me or WHAT? My first reaction, before he added that second comment, was, "He'll believe whatever I tell him, so I'll just make a number up." Then he made me agree not to lie about.

But dayum...I'm a writer! I make up fictious stuff that will make the reader smile (sometimes smile. Sometimes squirm. Sometimes get up and find out if the batteries are working in BOB, but I digress...)

So that was 9:30. From there, I called Shari to whine and bitch and moan about CF. That took twenty minutes. Suddenly, it's 10:45 and I'm more email to check, nothing new on the webpage....I guess that means I'm going to have to open up the freakin' story and actually WORK. Then I had an AHA! moment. The blog.

I could blog. And here I am. I suck. I'm procrastinating and I KNOW I'm procrastinating and I just don't get WHY I'm procrastinating. But I'm procrastinating nonetheless. See? As the title told you, I SO suck.

Okay. That's it. I'm going to open up the book from hell that needs revisions that simply boggle the mind. Right now. I promise. I'll report back tonight with a page number (since I have to totally re-write the beginning, the number will be FRESH pages...if I'm explaining this to you, does that mean I'm STILL procrastinating? Ugh. Thought so.)

Okay. Right now. Write NOW!

Thursday, August 11, 2005

The Countdown is on

Today is open house, where I have to be two places at once (thankfully, for the high school freak called Shandie, hers isn't until tomorrow night.) So I go to the elementary school, and for the LAST TIME, I see my last child's first teacher. Monday will be the LAST TIME I will have a "very first day of school" moment.

I thought for years the day wouldn't come soon enough, where I had time in my day with no kids around. With them 4-15, I've been home with kids for 15 years now, with a two year break between the sets where I worked. But if I've been home, there's always been at least one kid home, too. This year, that changes. And now I'm not too sure I want it to.

I mean, of course, I WANT it to. Cooper will love school. He's the only boy and he's always gravitating toward other boys at the store and stuff. We live across the street from the elementary school, so last year, when Syd was in Pre-K, we could watch her at lunch as she played on the playground. This year, I'll get to watch Cooper do that. I said, "Are you excited to play with other little boys?"

He replied, "Yeah! And little girls, too!"

(His dad had a proud moment there.)

So I have three days left. Three days where I can still pretend he's the "baby". Three days before my last one starts the grand adventure. Three days before he realizes that his world doesn't revolve around his mother. Just three days and then I'll look up, and he'll be like Shandie, taller than me, and almost done with high school. Three days will turn into 15 years so damn fast. I know, because I swear it was only a few days ago that I was getting Shandie ready for her first day of school.

It's easy to pretend that the older two girls aren't getting bigger. Another year of high school or middle school isn't that big a thing. But to watch the baby, the one 11 years younger than the oldest, step outside and wave "Bye, Mom!" I don't know how my heart will handle it.

And once they start school, it's over. It goes faster and faster and each year zips by me before I can scream "SLOW DOWN!"

Tonight they take their school supplies so they don't have to haul them the first day. Last night I double checked his brand new Spiderman backpack to make sure it was ready.

Cooper, "It's really, really cool, Mom."
(He's not quite four - a week from today - and I've already lost "Mommy" from him.)

Me: "I'll miss you while you're at school."

Him: "I know. I miss you, too." (He doesn't say "I'll" yet.)

Then he grinned his lady-killer grin and hugged me.

People told me I'd cry this year, being the last of the "first day of school". I swore I wouldn't. I swore I'd been waiting for years for this day to come. I'd get to be Brenda part of the day instead of constantly "Mom", so no, I wouldn't shed a tear.

I lied.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

A week & two days later...

I'm back. Well, I've been back, I just haven't blogged. Thanks to those of you who emailed me find out where I've been.

I've been home. I think I marinated my brain in too much tequila at Nationals or something, because I'm still draggin' ass.

Nationals was a BLAST! Loved it more than words can say, and being that it was only my 2nd time, the difference was HUGE. THIS year, I knew people. What fun it was to put faces with internet names, to hear their accents, their tones, watch their hands as they spoke. And I do believe they had the best classes I've ever heard.

One was by Stephanie Bond in which she mentions career planning. I plan on making a career plan and putting it in bold, honker-sized print and putting it on my bulletin board here so I'm forced to see it everyday:

1) Where do I want to be in one year?
2) In two years?
3) What houses do I want to target?
4) What do I really, REALLY want in an agent?

Those are the kind of things I've been wondering about.

And speaking of agents, I met with Deidre Knight, and if you're a regular of my blog, you know she and Fogelman are my top two agents on my list. She requested the first three chapters and synopses of two of my projects...but she requested that same thing from EVERYONE, which makes me question how much she REALLY wants to read them. Of course, I'm still sending them, but I hate having to deal with self-doubt.

And it puts me on a deadline. The first is awaiting a crapload of revisions. The second one has the first two chapters. Chapter three won't be hard, I just have to get it done and then re-read the entire thing to make sure it's flowing right and tight enough. Yanno how that goes, right?

Yanno how I keep saying that come August 15th, I'm writing fulltime (once all the kids are in school)? That's Monday. Less than a week away. And now that the time is upon me, I'm freaked out. I'm back to the "What if I suck?" "What if the words don't come?" "What if the revisions are just too big???" Ugh. I hate that!!!!

I know this is a short post considering I've been gone a long time, but it's all I can do right now. My hips went out yesterday, so I'm hugely drugged up to keep from it becoming this huge thing that requires an ambulance and ER injections. And since I'm drugged, my brain isn't running right and I feel like I'm rambling. I do enough of that sober, so I can only imagine what this will be like.

For those of you I finally met, it was a blast. For those of you I never ran into, we have to take extra care in Atlanta to find each other! (Tess, Randy, I'm looking at you!!!) I'll try to post again tomorrow.

*smoochas, my freaky darlings*

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Going out with a BANG!

I leave tomorrow for 10 days, so this will probably be my last post until I get back the first week of August. I thought I'd share this FICTIONAL email with you all.

***WARNING*** No children! No sensitive eyes!!!!

The Best Dang Divorce Letter Ever:

My darling...

I know the counselor said we shouldn't contact each other during our "cooling off" period, but I couldn't wait anymore. The day you left, I swore I'd never talk to you again. But that was just the wounded little boy in me talking. Still, I never wanted to be the first one to make contact. In my fantasies, it was always you who would come crawling back to me.

I guess my pride needed that. But now I see that my pride has cost me a lot of things. I'm tired of pretending I don't miss you. I don't care about looking bad anymore. I don't care who makes the first move as long as one of us does.

Maybe it's time we let our hearts speak as loudly as our hurt. And this is what my heart says, "There's no one like you, darling." I look for you in the eyes and breasts of every woman I see, but they're not you. They're not even close. Two weeks ago, I met this girl at Flamiingos and brought her home with me. I don't say this to hurt you, but just to illustrate the depth of my desperation.

She was young, maybe 19, with one of those perfect bodies that only youth and maybe a childhood spent ice skating can give you. I mean, just a perfect body. Tits like you wouldn't believe and an ass that just wouldn't quit. Every man's dream, right? But as I sat on the couch being blown by this stunner, I thought, look at the stuff we've made important in our lives. It's so superficial.

What does a perfect body mean? Does it make her better in bed? Well, in this case, yes, but you see what I'm getting at. Does it make her a better person? Does she have a better heart than my moderately attractive wife? I doubt it. And I've never really thought of that before.

I don't know, maybe I'm just growing up a little. Later, after I've tossed her about a half a pint of throat yogurt, I found myself thinking, "Why do I feel so drained and empty?" It wasn't just her flawless technique or her slutty, shameless hunger, but something else. Some nagging feeling of loss. Why did it feel so incomplete? And then it hit me. I didn't feel the same because you weren't there to watch. Do you know what I mean? Nothing feels the same without you. I'm going crazy without you! And everything I do just reminds me of you.

Do you remember Carol, that single mom we met at the Holiday Inn lounge last year? Well, she dropped by last week with a pan of lasagna. She said she figured I wasn't eating right without a woman around. I didn't know what she meant til later, but that's not the real story.

Anyway, we had a few glasses of wine and the next thing you know, we're banging away in our old bedroom. And this tart's a total monster in the sack. She's giving me everything, you know, like a real woman does when she's not hung up about her weight or her career and whether the kids can hear us or not. And all of the sudden, she spots that tilting mirror on your grandmother's old vanity. So she puts it on the floor and we straddle it, right, so we can watch ourselves. And it's totally hot, but it makes me sad, too. Because I can't help thinking, "Why didn't my darling ever put the mirror on the floor?? We've had this old vanity for what? 14 years and we never used it as a sex toy."

Saturday, your sister dropped by with my copy of the restraining order. I mean, Vicki is just a kid and all, but she's go a pretty good head on her shoulders and she's been a real friend to me during this painful time. She's given me lots of good advice about you and about women in general. She's pulling for us to get back together. She really is. So we were doing Jell-O shots in a hot bubble bath and talking about happier times. Here's this teenage girl with the same DNA as you and all I can do is think about how much she looks just like you did when you were 18. And that just about makes me cry.

And then it turns out Vicki is really into the whole anal thing, that gets me to thinking about how many times I pressured you about trying it and how that probably fueled some of the bitterness between us. But do you see how even then, when I'm thrusting inside your baby sister's cinnamon ring, all I can do is think of you?? It's true, darling! In your heart, you must know it. Don't you think we could start over? Just wipe out all the grievances away and start fresh? I think we can. If you feel the same, please, please, please let me know.

Otherwise, can you let me know where the fucking remote control is?!




Wednesday, July 20, 2005

One Acetone Soak Too Many

Remember me getting free nails so this chick could learn arcrylic?? Well, she did a decent job three weeks ago and then I was gone to DFW. She KNOWS I leave for Nationals THIS WEEK, and the entire point was to let her practice on me so I look good for Nationals. Duh. So last night I go in to have her "fill them" (they're the french manicure look). She RUSHES through it, doesn't buff them, which means they look dull, then says, "Come back tomorrow night and we'll soak these off and put gel nails on instead of acrylic."


So I'm like, "That's cutting it really close. I don't know that I'll have time." (Trying to urge her to finish these to look good.)

She says, "Oh, we can do the gels when you get back then."

I'm thinking, okay let's get these buffed and done with, even though they're rushed. INSTEAD, she says, "Go out the back so Lori (owner and "teacher") doesn't ask to see them." Which means she knew they looked like shyt. I said, "Aren't you going to buff them?" She said, "It doesn't make that big a difference. Your cuticles are dry so we'll put oil on them instead."

Yes, the oil made them look better...til the oil DRIED and was gone and now I have these dull looking things.

So I go in tonight, so we can soak these off AGAIN and let her do the gels. She's not there. I called her cell. She says, "Remember, we're doing the gels when you get back?"

OMG. SOOOOOOO PISSED. I said, "Well, I'm not going with them looking like this. I guess I'll just paint them to cover it up."

Her answer. "Polish."

Me: What??

Her: "It's polishing your nails, not painting."


I storm back home and I'm livid. LIVID. I don't do nails because mine DO grow. But as they grow, they split. So when we started this (for free), it was to just do an acrylic overlay so my natural nail wouldn't split. After she kept screwing it up and I kept having to soak them off, my nails were so brittle I would sneeze and they'd break. Now I have trashed nails.

So, I leave in two days. I'm going to PAINT them and cover this crap up then I'll soak them off myself and NEVER go back. Ever. Ev.Er.

So what color would go with ALL my outfits?? Pink won't match red. Red won't match pinks. I hate this.

Remember this: You get what you pay for. I just did.

Books, books and more books

I really have to get another bookshelf. I just don't really have the room, so it looks like I may have to start using up more vertical space and putting shelves up on the walls, all the way to ceiling.

So while people are buying books at Nationals and having their favs authors sign them, I'm doing what I did last year. When I heard James Patterson was going to be there, I brought my hardcover of KISS THE GIRLS and he signed it for me. Hee! That was neat. I just wish I'd gotten my picture taken with him. That part sucked. I did make him blush, so that kinda equaled out the no picture thing.

So now I'm looking at my stacks of what to bring to beg a signature. I want to bring KILL & TELL from Linda Howard, but I only have that in paperback, so that's out. I do have ALL THE QUEEN'S MEN, my 2nd fav, but I'd rather her sign a first edition. The only first edition of I have in hardcover is ....~swivels around to get the title then remembers it's in the bedroom, waiting its turn~. Anyway, I found a 1st edition of my fav, but I seriously don't think I can get it before I leave. Which totally sucks. Looks like I'm going to take Mr. Perfect, which I was up until 4:30 finishig the other day. Now I have to go through my Crusie hardcovers and see which one of those to take with me. Then I have others, like Elizabeth Bevarly, Jodi Thomas, Anne Frasier (don't know if Anne Frasier is going to Nationals or not though.) I was going to take ALONE from Lisa Gardner, but she's not going. (Grr.) So do you have any you're bringing with you, rather than purchase, to have signed??

So instead of staying up and reading Jennifer Crusie, now I'm back on a Linda Howard kick, as if you can't tell. I devoured Linda Howard's KISS ME WHILE I SLEEP. Frank Vinay was back, as was the mention of John Media, whom I adore, so lovers of KILL & TELL will definitely want to grab it up. This little cover, as sexy as it is and as SUBTLE as it is, still was raised as a concern with the RWA "graphic standard" they attempted to start. Thankfully, after tons of debate and some not-so-nice emails, RWA's board has decided to shelf the matter for another time, I guess. The book was great. I read it in one day. Then, like the slow learner I am, I read MR. PERFECT and was beyond impressed, as always. This may kick KILL & TELL from my all time fav spot for her books, but doubt it. I'd rank it #3. KILL & TELL, ALL THE QUEEN'S MEN, then Mr. PERFECT maybe. Of course, that puts KISS ME WHILE I SLEEP as #4, and since it's kind of part of the first two, that doesn't make much sense. Hmm...I think I'm putting WAY too much thought into this. Needless to say, she's my icon.

Now, you have to understand, I LOVE everyone one of her books I've read save for one: DIE NO MORE. I didn't care for the last one because it was too "chick thrill". I don't want Linda Howard trying to take on a new sub-genre. She's successful beyond belief with her voice planted perfectly straddling the line of romance and suspense, and I want it to stay that way. She, like no other I've found, has that perfect balance. And she does male POV so well, don't stick me in a chick-thrill where I only get the heroine's POV. I love those guys, so let me into their mind for awhile, dang it. And as Kristen Painter and I were discussing the other day, there's something about 1st person POV that seems ...shallower. You'd think if we are in the main character's POV the entire time, it would feel deeper, but for some reason, she and I had the same feeling on this. Give us more POVS and get us more involved. Make us understand more of the people, gives us the situation and opinions of more than one, and maybe that makes us understand the event to an even larger degree. I don't know, I'm merely speculating, but that's what comes to mind.

So what am I reading now? Back to Blaze. As you know, my Walmart was sucked dry of any Blaze books, and why? I still don't know. But came forward for me, and I got a crapload in the mail. YAY! Problem with Blaze, I'm finding, is that there are tons of "series", four books written by four authors about a single group of people or whatever. Well, once I find out there are others as part of the group, I don't want to read it without having all in the series and reading them in order. I'm weird that way. So out of the 10 blazes that came, I only have about three to choose from. That sucks. So I'm reading another Jo Leigh, called Arm Candy. So far, it's great. And I'm liking the hero way more then the heroine, so that means I'll end up with a greater satisfaction with her as the book progresses. I look forward to it.

After another nap, though.

Time is spewing away

I leave in two days to head to Reno.

~One moment please - must pop another Xanax~

I'm leaving from DFW, and my parents up there are watching the four kids while I'm gone for a week, which is why I'm leaving so early. I'll be there Friday and Saturday just to hang out, then Sunday evening I get on a jet plane and HASTA LA VISTA, baby! I'm outta here!!! On the many loops I'm on, I was talking about being in DFW before Reno and was invited to the DARA (Dallas Romance Writers of America) monthly meeting. Their guest speaker?


I swear, the poor guy's gonna think I'm stalking him.

He'll survive. I think.

So I'm mostly packed up and ready to go. I got my dress back from the tailor and dry cleaned. This isn't even my dress for the gala, but for the Death By Chocolate party. Things are so crazy, I swear. Now I just have to pack up the stuff for four kids for a week, and get my "cannot forget for conference" stuff packed up and stowed and KNOW it's going to be okay.

On top of all this chaos, I've not been sleeping. I was up until 7am one night..morning. Then 4:30. Then 3:45. So I am getting closer to normal sleeping hours. Last night, I totally drugged myself up, and I still didn't crash until almost 1am. Then it was even harder to wake up than normal because of all the Xanax and Flexeril I'd taken. ~le sigh~ And although I only have today and tomorrow to have EVERYTHING ready, B says "Let's take today to do nothing but relax and watch movies." I translate that to: and sleep. I need to. I need to be rested before the chaos and thrill of next week sweeps me away like last week's alley trash...but there's just still SO MUCH TO DO!!!

I have a folder I've been putting all my papers that I 'can't possibly forget for Nationals' in. BUT, it's now overflowing, so I had to move to a three-ring binder style. I found a black one that reads "I FELL OFF THE MONKEY BARS". I thought if I totally snapped and went beyond mental at Nationals, someone might see that and then they'd all nod their heads in understanding. That's my hope anyway, should anything happen.

On the "new and exciting" news front: I'm the new Promotions Manager for Romance Divas. If you're not a member there, you really should join. There's a great chat forum and it's so much better than emails to me to hold information (no saving or printing off emails) and to be able to go back and remind yourself of links or whatever. I'm really looking forward to working with Kristen, Jax and Lisa. And yanno, with the 43 loops, the two I moderate, the board of KOD and being the recruiting assistant and all that jazz...well, I had some free time. ~smirk~ Thank gawd, I'm the Multitasking Demon.

As you can tell if you're STILL reading this, I have to get back into the habit of blogging daily, otherwise I run at the mouth like a colon after a Mexican fiesta.

And I'm running around this house like a chicken with its head cut off. And, for all you city folk, let me tell ya...I've seen it, and it ain't a pretty site.

And it kinda puts a damper on Sunday dinner of fried chicken, too.

Bad, bad visual.

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Guest Blogger Alert: JULIE KENNER!!!

Well, for regular viewers of my blog, it's no secret how I feel about Ms. Julie Kenner. I truly believe that anything she touches is golden, and to be able to call her my friend is an incredible honor. Now if only I could lure her back to our monthly meetings! Oh, the perils of having so many projects! Please feel free to comment and/or ask questions, as she'll check back in here regularly to reply!
So. Apparently I have become my heroine. No, really. Let me explain. My current book is CARPE DEMON: ADVENTURES OF A DEMON-HUNTING SOCCER MOM (A Booksense Summer Paperback Pick. And a Target Break-out Book! Yay! Check it out. Shelved front of store or in the Sci-Fi section. End commercial.) At any rate, since I'm doing this blog tour to tell folks about the book, I thought it made sense to talk about the book or the character or something somewhat relevant. Which meant I had to come up with a topic.

I found one today at the mall, at the same time I realized that I've become my heroine, Kate Connor (note how carefully I got back to my original thesis after that brief commercial break? Snazzy, huh?).

You see, Kate is a Demon Hunter. She's also a mom, and a rather harried mom at that, considering she has to keep the whole demon-hunting thing secret. And that, you see, is what I have in common with Kate. Not the Demon Hunting part, but I've got that harried mom bit down to a science.

Case in point: this afternoon. C's day care is closed for teacher workshops, and so I figured this is a good day to shop for clothes for the RWA National Convention coming up in Reno later this month. (Clothes being necessary since my hips have expanded such that my pants no longer fit; I've therefore made the wily decision to wear dresses at National since they will still fit even after I beat my hips and caloric intake into submission. Which would probably happen faster if I put away the potato chips I'm currently eating, but now that I've bought dresses, it's not like I'm any hurry ...)

But I digress. At any rate, C and I schlep to Lakeline Mall with the goal of finding mommy dresses. So. We head first to the cookie place (for the promised treat for a well-behaved child), only to get waylaid by the Dippin' Dots stand (little tiny pellets of ice cream that we discovered at Sea World and really are yummy). After much negotiation, we decide on the Dots over the cookie. No problem. Buy. Sit. Eat.

Except they don't melt as fast as they do at Sea World (thanks to the industrial strength air conditioning in the mall). So after about 3 bites, C wants a cookie after all. I weigh whether it's better to teach my kid some deep life lesson about decisions and commitments and bargains (and, possibly, calories) against the possibility of sitting at a sticky table in the food court for 30 minutes while we wait for the dots to melt.

I cave. We buy a cookie. (See? One demon slayed already!!)

We head through the mall, C happily munching and me searching for Ann Taylor. Ann Taylor, I realize, is not in Lakeline Mall.


But I can adjust. I'm channeling a kick ass Demon Hunter after all. Surely, I can find a dress. Or three.

And what to my wondering eyes should appear, but a Casual Corner with some really cute clothes in the window and a giant SALE sign. Ah, nirvana!

We enter. At this point, C is covered w/ chocolate (from the chips) and green stuff (from the icing) and crumbs. I tell her NOT TO TOUCH ANYTHING. The sales girl laughs. I am heartened by this blatant show of understanding, but still keep a sharp eye on the kid.

I manage to pull off a few dresses in my size before C gives in to the urge to touch. Off we go to a dressing room where, before trying on anything, I clean the kid's hands with water, a napkin, and a lot of rubbing.

Now the fun really begins. The dressing room is the curtained kinds, and every time I'm in my underwear (braless - I was wearing a tank top), C manages to pull the thing open. (Have I mentioned she's 3?) And she also plays "spanky" on my butt. Yeah, I know. But the kid finds it amusing. Of course, she yells out "spanky butt" loud enough that I hear giggles from the adjoining dressing rooms.

Despite my mortification, I manage to find 3 dresses, in a size smaller than I usually wear. I decide I love Casual Corner's dress forms and sizing policy. Nothing demonic there, but maybe magical?

We pay. We move on. The store is still in tact, the unsold clothes aren't sticky w/ cookie. I consider the venture a success.

Next, I discover a sale at Dillards. DARLING dresses for $9.99. Yes, $9.99. I and a bunch of other women (also with strollers) are digging through the racks. My child decides to play hide and seek in the racks. I hear a little voice calling "Marco!" and I have to yell "Polo" just to get the kid to come out. We were getting some strange looks.

But overall, the adventure was a success. My own little 3 year old demon behaved pretty well, all things considered (I could make it as a demon hunter, huh?) and I got a pile of new clothes.

Life is good.

USA Today bestselling author Julie Kenner spent years mainlining venti nonfat lattes and working full time as an attorney, writing about four books each year, and being a mom. Finally, she realized that sleep is a good thing, and quit the practice of law to write full time. She lives in Georgetown, Texas, with her husband and three year old daughter. Her current releases include THE GIVENCHY CODE and CARPE DEMON: ADVENTURES OF A DEMON-HUNTING SOCCER MOM, currently in development with Warner Brothers and 1492 Pictures. CARPE DEMON was also selected as a Summer Paperback Pick for 2005 by and is a "Target Breakout Book!" For more info, visit Julie on the web at

Men vs. Women

Yanno how there are those people in our lives that want something from us? Different people pulling you a billion and one different ways? And there seems to always be something in it for them, and although you know this deep down, you still haven't figured what "that" is for some of them? I have a few in my life like this. Well, okay, I have one. All they want from me is a blog entry.

I'm not even kidding.

And it's a guy.

~pauses for a moment while all the chicks reading this think on it~

Yes, that's right. There's a guy out there that wants NOTHING MORE from me than a blog entry. How odd is that? Usually if it involves a male and me, there's an alterior motive. He wants another photo. Or he wants me to talk to him, or he wants...well, you know. But not this one. I never hear a word out of him until I go more than a few days between entries. Then, I get the "eye".

Now while this may seem weird (yeah, well, okay, it IS weird), I find it endearing (he's going to scowl when he reads "endearing" used to describe him as he reads this) but it IS endearing. He knows how important my writing is to me and what satisfaction I get out of just blogging and letting my thoughts ramble on. I think he may be my badge holder. The one that reads "I'm a writer". When I forget, he peals off the back and slaps it back on my shirt (or forehead) to remind me. And yes, we're going with a peal off back, because he has this mean side to him, so we're really, REALLY not going to let him have a name badge with a stick-pin on the backside, k? Thanks.

So I was rambling to him (he doesn't reply unless it's about my blog) about picking and choosing different elements of different guys, what's great about them, what totally sucks. His comment: Blog it. (He's really, really a blabbermouth sometimes. Two-word reply that must be a full moon.)

(He's rolling his eyes now, by the way.)

So okay, I'll blog it. What do men need from a woman? They want beauty. They want brains (sometimes). They want confidence and sexy and blah blah blah. I imagine they want tall and thin and someone that looks like she hasn't eaten at Burger King EVER, much less twice this week. ~blink~ But most of the guys I know don't want that skinny chick. Hard to believe, but they really, honestly, seem to like curves. Where we see fat, they see soft. While most of the times in my life I felt like men looked at my chest while I spoke, those good guys seemed to want nothing more than to look into my eyes, sometimes to the point of having to move my hair back from my face to do so.

So what do WE want? What's your "perfect" guy? I want it all: Looks, jobs, personality, his family. What does he do? What does he look like? What's his family like? What's his personality like? What total package of a guy does it for you? (If you're a guy reading, reverse those questions to apply to girls. If you're married, spare me that mushy shyt about "My wife is my ideal." Cuz puhleeze, there's no real ideal that wraps it ALL up, so let's not pretend there is. There's close, but there's no perfection, which is why romance makes up such a huge chunk of the sales: We read what doesn't exist so we can live that fantasy. Don't argue with me, either, because that's like...MATH.)

I was in a chat room one time (well, I'm in there ALL the time, so let me start over.) One day when I was in the chat room that I frequent, this girl was saying, "We have to be thin with big tits and a tiny waist and long hair and a perfect face with blue eyes. Men? They just have to be tall."

Fitting, isn't it? Have you read a romance lately where the hero WAS NOT tall? Didn't think so.

Yeah, actually... my Blog Hero, he's tall, too.

Told ya.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Well, this perks a girl right up...

So I put on this capri set that my aunt had given me. Just something for around the house, errands, all that jazz. I thought it was cute.

I came out of my room and my two youngest daughters stared at me and BOTH said, "You look like Mimi."

Mimi would be my MOTHER.

Outfit was quickly removed and placed in the Goodwill bag. ~sigh~

Saturday, July 09, 2005

Blaze! Oh, Blaze! Where forth art thou, Blaze?!

So for those that don't know, Harlequin's Temptation line ended, and so their Blaze line is going from four a month to six a month. As someone aiming for the Blaze line, this was great news for me. So I'm doing what any writer does: reading my line.

BUT, Blaze is empty at my bookstore (this would be Walmart as my source without having to drive to a bigger town.) Nothing. No Blaze. All the slots were filled, and a huge amount was of Harlequin's Love Inspired line, way more than normal. So what's up with that?? I need my Blaze fix! So, to get my fix, I hit Those are coming, but does anyone have any idea why there weren't any when they restocked the books? I LOVE getting inexpensive books at, but I DO NOT like paying shipping.

Blaze! Come back!!

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Bitch bitch bitch, that's all she ever does

Yeah, well, it's my blog so I can do that. And right now, I'm staring at my crappy writing while reading Jennifer Crusie and thinking, "OMG. I SO suck compared to this."

Do you ever get like that?? You look and admire and get lost in the greatness of another writer and think "There is no way that'll ever, EVER be me"? I'm there, right now.

Thing is, I know I have the talent. And this last year, the things I've learned and grown in are TRULY immeasurable. I have no doubt I'll be published and be happily published and have a CAREER in publishing, not just one book or whatever. I really, really don't have that doubt.

I don't think.

So I msn a friend of mine and I said, "I have no talent."
He said, "Quitting then?"
I said, "I'm too stubborn to."

Which is true. I am. And instead of giving up on it all, I read more. I make myself feel more inadequate as I read Crusie after Crusie, Blaze after Blaze. Why? Because if I absorb it enough, I'll think that same way, I'll create that same thing, because that'll be what I KNOW.

Are you glad you left some of that cheese behind. *chomp*

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Love & Hate of Small Towns

So I was reading on another blog how the writer was sick of reading about small towns in novels. Well, I happen to be writing a novel that has to do with a small town. And I'm reading one right now (by Jennifer Crusie) that involves a small town.

So here's why I think there's a love/hate situation with small towns, and it's summed up (both the love it AND the hate it part), in three simple words:

Everyone knows everyone.

You love it, because it's familiar, it's how it has always been and how it always will be. And you hate it for those very same reasons.

BUT, one of the things I personally love about small towns are the odd little people that live there. Now, don't get me wrong - odd little people live in big cities, too. But in small towns, you see more of them, you KNOW more about them. So how fun is it to read about a quirkly little gay old dude in the big city? It's not. There's a million of them. But toss in an aging gay man in the middle of a small town, and heck, there's a story right THERE. Not only would he be way more noticed, but he's got that insta-conflict with small town "values" and traditions and all that jazz. (I'm not writing about that, although Stephen King did once - and I remember it because of that very fact.)

So although this one other blog's writer mentioned hating reading about small towns, I think we're kind of drawn to those types of stories anyway, where everyone has their little secrets, which is kinda funny, since everyone else already KNOWS those secrets. And the secrets of the daddy, and the granddaddy, and let's not downplay what great-granddaddy did back in 1910. Infamy isn't always a bad thing, especially when it's happening to someone else.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Get the cheese! I've got the whine.

So while I'm sitting here pondering the latest in the "Brenda has the WORST luck ever" moment of the hour, I look at my shins. Find a cactus because I have the desert. Now, I have to tell you, I don't use lotion. I hate lotion. It leaves my hands and body and like..EVERYTHING...covered in this slimy skin like a coating from a slug. Yes, it does. Don't argue.

But look at those shins. ~sigh~

So I'd bought some cocoa butter, because as much as I dislike lotion, I like the IDEA of lotion. I like the IDEA of having soft, if not plump, skin. ~eye twitch~ So like the inexperienced twit that I am, I open the cocoa butter and eye my shins with determination.

(pause for dramatic effect)

So out goes my palm, reading to accept the gooey, slimy, white gunk (this could be a Blaze...hmm...) and I squeeze. (Yeah, still lookin' like a Blaze here...)

And then I cringe.

So this is one of those bottles that you don't have to actually squeeze, apparently. I know this, because I had a good 1/2 cup of lotion sitting in my little hand, trying to get thoughts of Blaze outta my brain because THAT much white gooey spunk would just be....ew. ~does a mental flush for us all with my deepest, yet not really that sincere, apologies~

If I had to go through it, you all must suffer with me.

So I take my palm and splat it against my other palm in an attempt to distribute the gunk. Then eye my shins. After literally 20 FULL MINUTES of rubbing my shins, my feet, my thighs, my stomach, my arms and yes, even the parts of my back that I could reach, I finally got the white film off my flesh.

Did I mention I hate lotion yet?

And all of this while I was contemplating the "Brenda's luck sucks" moment, which of course, merely added to it, making the opinion more like fact - which brings me, belatedly, to the topic at hand.

One of my a-list agents (there are only two on my a-list to begin with) is reopening submissions for queries. Well hell.

I have one completed ST RS that has revisions on it that would make your mental red pen twitch in a slow death inside your brain (I wrote it before I had a clue. Now that I have a clue, I know that the book is not remotely ready for ANYONE to see, much less one of my two a-listers.) Well, the other seven books you've heard me mention on here aren't finished! AND....hello?! I'm unpubbed. Which means no one wants to really seriously look at me without a completed novel in hand.

Now, that brings up a question. I'm an RWA PRO member. That right there proves I can complete a manuscript. That same book finaled in my first contest I entered, The Merritt. (It's also the one that needs a crapload of revisions.) But is that enough to PROVE to an agent that this unpubbed can and has completed a novel? Or can I not submit a query until it's polished within an inch of its life??

AND (yes, grab another hunk of cheese, because no, I'm not done yet) does someone aiming for category NEED an agent? I think so. I want one. I don't know jackcrap about contracts or whatever. And this particular agent is big on "careers" with her authors, which is what I desperately want. AND (I have a lot of those today - too much caffeine), she doesn't charge basic office fees (yanno, copies, mailings, blah blah blah) and if you are a long-time reader of this blog, you know I have issues with that. She's like.....PERFECT!!! AND, (dang, too much of that word here) I LIKE her. I like her personality, I like how she reaches out, I like her attitude and I seriously only hear great things about her. She rocks. I wanna rock WITH her. But I can' least, I don't THINK I can. I'm not entirely sure, but I think she wants a completed, polished one, not just my synopsis (btw, those are tons easier to write if you do them BEFORE the book. Little FYI.)

Okay, enough of that. Leave the leftover cheese here when you go - I'm sure I'll sink my teeth into it a bit more as I stare at my screen and whine about my luck and timing and all that jazz.

Cocoa butter, anyone?

At least it smells good.


I'm thrilled and honored to host Alesia as she tours blogs to promote her newest book, NICE GIRLS FINISH FIRST. Here, she talks about it with us.

So one day I was thinking about today’s woman, as I often do, considering that I write funny books about the everyday (and not so everyday!) things we all go through, and I was wondering about that perpetual dilemma – the Myth of the Nice Girl.

Somehow, through a peculiar evolution of the professional environment, women today are finally recognized (mostly) as equally competent, ambitious, and dedicated as men in the workforce. (We’ll leave the “we have to work smarter and harder” argument aside for now.) But yet, we have an added burden: we have to be NICE.

Now, this isn’t really tough for most women, most of the time. We were raised to be nice. That’s what little girls do, right? “Play nice!” “Be nice!” Except, well, there are times when you can’t be all that nice . . . Boyfriend cheating? Kick him to the curb! Um, in a nice way? Opposing counsel trying underhanded tactics? Notify the judge and get him sanctioned! Er, nicely?

The idea of a character who is very ambitious and a great person, but a little bit of a tough chick on the surface, really intrigued me. And I had the perfect character in Kirby Green, newly-hired exec at the Whips and Lace Co. She’d pretty much stolen every scene she was in in AMERICAN IDLE (Double RITA finalist, how cool is that??). Then I wanted to compare and contrast Kirby with a character who was so nice that she was in danger of becoming a doormat. Brianna sprang to life. My good friend who is an opera singer (no, really!) provided some great background for her. Then I set the two of them loose to play on the pages – each helping the other learn something about life, and about herself. That’s how NICE GIRLS FINISH FIRST was born.

Can we be successful as women today and still retain some of that niceness that was so valued in earlier years? I think so. But nice doesn’t mean dumb, and today’s nice girls DO finish first. They might just have to kick a little ass along the way.


Thanks for helping me celebrate the release of my second novel!! – Alesia Holliday (p.s. This nice girl is frantically polishing some pages due to Hollywood interest – you can see the details at

Be smart - run out and snag it now! I'm gonna!

Well, I survived the parental units

I'm back. Of the four kids, only two returned with me: the toddlers. EEKS!

Carly is up in Wisconsin visiting my dear friend, Shari. Shandie is still up at my parents, because when Carly flies home on Saturday, Shandie then hits the sky to take her place for her own one week vacation. Then, of course, Shari and I meet up in Denver to connect our flights for OUR one week vacation in RENO!!! Busy times, I'm a'tellin' ya.

While I was gone, I read a TON. Something occurred to me last night when I stayed up til 3:45am to finish a novel: I always fall in love with the heros. I can only say: This has got to be what it takes to create a fanbase...the hero. Yum. ~takes a deeeeeeeeep, cleansing breath~

I did finally read two more Jenny Crusie books. I'd only read CHARLIE ALL NIGHT, which was cute, but didn't blow me away. I've now read STRANGBEDPERSONS and MANHUNTING, and I'm blown away. I hope to start BET ME soon.

As you all know, I'm a huge Julie Kenner junkie. Her latest novel (to me) just solidified that little fact. I finished NOBODY BUT YOU in just one and 1/2 days...SO good. I'd read SILENT CONFESSIONS and then it's follow-up, SILENT DESIRES, in that same record time. Although Julie is exploring paranormal right now, she's got the perfect balance to me for romantic suspense. Seriously, I can't say enough.

Also, I was up late reading Sandra Brown's WHITE HOT. I was pleased to find that Sandra Brown pulled me back into her fan base. She sold me with ENVY, but a couple after that did not wow me, but WHITE HOT got me all over again. Such an amazing plot line with more twists and turns than a freeway built across a mountain range. If you love ENVY, grab this one, too.

So that's what I did while I was gone: Read a ton. And yes, I worked too (mostly during Vacation Bible School - shhhhh, don't tell anyone! I think I may burn in hell for working on a scandalous story aimed at Blaze while in church.) My plot, and more importantly, my characters, are coming along nicely. I'm still working with FIRST DRAFT IN 30 DAYS, and I'm quite happy with the process, although I haven't been able to work on it as much as I'd hoped (I've been reading! BAD BRENDA!)but I am glad to find the book useful. As you writers know, it's like winning the lottery when we find a book on our craft that truly helps us!

Let's see...other news? Oh, how about this little gem? My mother, and I quote: "You really should lose some weight. I don't think I've ever seen you this heavy."


To which I replied: "Guess dementia is setting in already, Mom. You forget the five years in Vidor when I was 15lbs heavier than this." (She didn't see me as often, so maybe that was the difference.) My almost 15 year old daughter (pardon me while I sob over her upcoming birthday) actually GAPED at her grandmother, and said she couldn't believe she'd said that. Mom tried to backpeddle, but yeah...well...yanno. Too little too late. Since so many of you have read my struggles and incredible discontentment with my weight lately, I thought you'd just LOVE reading that juicy news. The irony? Mom said this while FRYING HOMEMADE FRENCH FRIES for dinner. Why not just insult me while running an IV of lard right into my ass? Seems like that would be easier, right? Ugh.

Oh and this week, I have to go back and have my nails redone (shocked? Right.) I'm accepting prayers on my behalf for the pain I know I'm about to endure.

Reno, come faster.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Mornings Suck & Blog Guilt

It's 7am. In the summer, with no school to get the kids ready for, that should be illegal. Period. No questions asked.

So why am I up, you ask? Because I'm apparently a masochist. This chick up at the salon wanted someone to practice arcrylics on...for free. So I'm like, "Cool! Free nails!" And apparently I'm the only person that fell for this.

~insert gullible face here~

Now, my nails grow fast, and get pretty long. But then they start to split and stuff, so I basically ignore them, just occasionally filing them. She was going to do (and did) just a top arcylic layer to help with the splitting. Uh huh. Right. So after soaking off the "mess ups" for the fourth time now, my nails are shot to hell and as fragile as gossamer. Not kidding. Breaking off like crazy, so she (and the "teacher") are putting on tips today. Since I'm leaving for DFW today, she said, "Come in at 8am and we'll get you fixed up before you go."

And like the moron I am, I said, "OKAY!"

Since I don't wake up on my own...ever...I had to have B wake me up before he went back on his 72 hour shift. Which meant 6:30am. I don't wake up that early DURING school hours. I've lost my freakin' mind. It's all that acetone I've been soaking in. I swear.

So yeah, I'm leaving today for DFW and I won't be home until the 3rd. Therefore, no more blog updates until then. My parents have a computer, but it's six years old. Add a dial-up connection to it, and I'd rather gargle with razorblades than get online while at their house. Call me spoiled, but I LOVE my cable connection. I should have a crapload of stories to regale you all with when I get back though.

And I'm dealing with blog guilt. I tend to visit other blogs and spend 2-3 hours doing that and nothing else, blog hopping around and reading and posting, or visit none at all, and with the writing I've been doing lately, that means I haven't been visiting. I hope to get in an hour or so today before I go, because frankly, I miss it. I love to read what all you other guys are doing. In the meantime, I deal with guilt.

That, btw, is NOT from the acetone.

And mornings still suck.