Sunday, September 30, 2007

Home Again, Home Again

I'm tired, but M&M was a good conference. Larger than I expected, too. One of my notable experiences was meeting Barbara Vey, who blogs about books for Publisher's Weekly. You must go see her and please, leave a comment and let her know you were there. Also, if you have a book to promote, don't hesitate to add your website address or blog info at the end of your comment. Barbara encourages it! I love that kind of attitude.

Friday, September 28, 2007

This Is Me, Leaving

I'm headed out of town yet again, this time to the Moonlight and Magnolias conference (hosted by the Georgia Romance Writers) in Atlanta, GA.

I'm looking forward to it. Mostly. I'm looking forward to the parts where I'm not feverishly slaving away at the synopsis I need to write and to the parts where I'm not trying to figure out what happens in the last half of my book - so I can put it in the synopsis.

What I am looking forward to is the fun I'll have with my roomie, Roxanne St. Claire and the fun I'll have seeing my sistah, Deidre Knight and the fun I'll have meeting a few of the authors whose fabulous books I've read recently (Elizabeth Hoyt, for one.)

Other than that, this will be a working trip for me. Y'all try to get some work done while I'm gone, too, okay?

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Blurb Me

Do you have a blurb for the story you're working on or just finished? I'd love to hear it. I need to work on a blurb for my YA and I'm looking for ideas!!

Spill it.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

To Watch, Or Not To Watch

Journeyman: A romantic mystery-drama about Dan Vasser, a San Francisco newspaper reporter and family man who inexplicably begins to travel through time and change people's lives. Along the way, he also must deal with the difficulties and strife at work and home brought on by his sudden disappearances.

However, his freewheeling travels through the decades reunite him with his long-lost fiancée Livia -- which complicates his present-day life with wife Katie and their son. (Lifted from the NBC site.)

I'm really digging this show. It's got a twistiness to it that is really awesome, plus there is an undeniable romantic side (first of all, he's saving lives, then there's the current wife/long lost love trianble thing going on) - who doesn't love some romance? And I am especially grooving on this show now that my other "new" favorite, Burn Notice, is in repeats. Plus, Kevin McKidd (Dan) has this whole Daniel Craig vibe happening. Delish. Makes you rethink the blonde hero!

Have you seen this show yet? What do you think of it? Granted, I don't need to be watching anymore TV than I already am, but this is too good to pass up.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Choices, Choices

This is for plotters and pantsers alike.

When you get to a turning point in your story and a choice needs to be made (Does she get in the car with him or insist they walk? Does he tell her he's a werewolf or keep it a secret a little while longer? Should she take the red pill or the blue one?) how do you decided which way to go? What if it's an option you're not entirely comfortable with? As a writer, are you interested to see where that path leads?

Have you ever made a choice that didn't work out? Or maybe one that worked out better than you'd expected? I'd love to hear your thoughts on this.

Monday, September 24, 2007

My Crazy Mind

A while back I blogged about how sometimes I dream these wild dreams that feature my writer friends as the cast of characters. Last night was no exception. Unfortunately, the dream's guest of honor made it impossible for me to remember who else was in the dream. See, in my dream, we were hanging out with Nora Roberts.

Apparently, we were at some writer's con and somehow managed to get invited to Nora's suite (I think it started out as a tour since the suite, in my dream, was actually a restored country cottage - think English country, not Alabama.) After showing us through the rooms - I specifically remember a walk-in closet that had once been a bedroom - we ended up lounging around in another sitting room/bedroom area (two beds, many chairs and a chaise for Nora.) In her impeccable winter white suit, she answered questions, showed us a Better Homes and Gardens or Good Housekeeping mag that had featured her and her garden, introduced us to the three young men who served as her stylists (they showed us purses by some new designer they were mad for) and was generally a gracious and charming hostess.

Not that I expected her to be any different. Granted, this was just a dream, but how cool, right? Guess I should eat chips & salsa, dark chocolate Hershey kisses and pink lemonade for dinner more often.

What did you dream about last night?

Friday, September 21, 2007

What I Do Instead Of Writing

Here's a little something I whipped up yesterday. Enjoy!

This is my first time using the new Blogger video tool. So far, so good.

Oh and Annie was Fabulous!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Open For Business

The RITA and Golden Heart contests are officially open for business. Any planning on entering?


Things I know about the RITA: It has the potential to make you dumber. *wink* Also, the little feather pen thing in her hand will eventually fall off. Maybe even the night you win it. Still, I covet one of my very own.

Golden Heart

Things I know about the Golden Heart: Wearing the award isn't recommended for daily use. It can turn your neck green. True story. Can't reveal sources though...

So, who's entering? Not sure if I am. I'd really love to be ineligible.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Deep Thoughts

Just a few random things:

* Recently found a new artist (new to me), Eddi Reader. She's got kind of a Celtic, folksy sound. Very easy to listen to. Check out my myspace page to hear one of her songs, Bell, Book and Candle. If you go and listen to it, I'd love to hear what you think. Oh and friend me while you're there, if you haven't already.

* I've decided that great books, keeper books, shall now be referred to as a DMV. Delicious Mind Vacation. Feel free to use that. (Ex. C.L. Wilson's Lord of the Fading Lands - definite DMV, the recently read Peeps by Scott Westerfeld, not so much.)

* Blog and ye shall receive. I am ECSTATIC to tell you that there is an ARC of C. L. Wilson's Lady of Light and Shadows on its way to me. Sometimes, it pays to express one's self. I'm also thrilled to tell you that C.L. Wilson will be our Author of the Month at Romance Divas this coming October! Woohoo!

* Tomorrow, tomorrow, I'm going to see Annie tomorrow! Myself, Lara Santiago, my sis-in-law and the niece are off for a girl's night of the Cheesecake Factory and Annie. Can't wait! It's a hard knock life, but somebody's got to live it.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Public Service Announcement

Please Donate!

September 22nd through the 29th is National Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis Awareness Week. Pulmonary Fibrosis is a debilitating disease marked by progressive scarring of the lungs that gradually interferes with a person's ability to breathe. There is no cure, and currently there is NO FDA approved treatment. The disease is fatal, within 5 to 7 years of diagnosis. Approximately 128,000 people in the United States have IPF, and an estimated 48,000 new cases develop each year.

I personally have a friend suffering from this, so take a few moments to consider donating, will you? Every little bit helps.

You can learn more about PF at The Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis' website

Monday, September 17, 2007

Do You Judge A Book By Its Cover?

Ah, the all important cover. It's the first thing we see when cruising for a new read, and often, if we aren't familiar with an author or the book in question, it can determine whether or not we pick said book up.

So, what makes you pick up a cover? Is it a hot male torso? A classic clinch? Or something more mainstream?

And here's another question: How do you feel about reading a book only to find out the cover isn't true to the story? Say the heroine has short red hair in the book, but the cover shows her with long blonde locks. Or there's an ocean scene on the front when they actually went to a lake. Would that bother you or not?

What are some of your favorite covers? Have you ever read a book with an awful cover only to find out the book was amazingly good? Or picked up a book because of its great cover only to find out the book was suckworthy?

Let's talk covers!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Perhaps The Best Book You'll Read All Year

Once he had scorched the world.
Once he had driven back overwhelming darkness.
Once he had loved with such passion, his name was legend...
Now a thousand years later, a new threat calls him from the Fading Lands, back into the world that had cost him so dearly. Now an ancient, familiar evil is regaining its strength, and a new voice beckons him--more compelling, more seductive, more maddening than any before.
As the power of his most bitter enemy grows and ancient alliances crumble, the wildness in his blood will not be denied. The tairen must claim his truemate and embrace the destiny woven for him in the mists of time.

I don't think this blurb, or any blurb, could really do this book justice. Lord of the Fading Lands by C.L. Wilson (releases Oct. 2nd) is not a book that be contained in a blurb. It's much bigger than that, much harder to contain. What I can tell you, is that you MUST read this book. Even if you are not a fan of fantasy romance, read it. You will become a fan of fantasy romance.

This story is so rich and wonderful, there aren't enough words to truly describe it. The worldbuilding is PHENOMENAL. At once, this new world seems like an unfolding wonder and an old friend. The characters are real and full of depth - even the secondary characters make you want to read on.

This is a debut novel by C.L. Wilson. Remember that name. I think you're going to be hearing a lot more of it.

The second book in the series, Lady of Light and Shadows, comes out on Oct. 30th and right now, I am DYING to get my hands on it early.

Order these books today or hit your local bookstore and do the same. You will not be disappointed, I promise.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Share The Blog Love

What are some of your favorite blogs to visit? I'm looking to broaden my blog horizon, as it were. Does have to be a writer blog either - I visit a fair amount of food blogs, a few gossipy blogs and some fashion blogs, so anything fun is fair game.

On a seperate note, have you seen this:

Thursday, September 13, 2007

When Imaginations Go Bad...

My brain has no off switch. (This has nothing to do with the fact that my mouth has no filter. These are two unrelated things, I swear.)

It's just constantly on, running an incessant movie filled with scenes from books I've written, books I'm writing, books I have yet to write, or completely new characters. I think this is pretty commonplace for most writers.

But I also think most writers are able to turn their brains off at night. Me? Not so much. In fact, there are mornings where I wake up feeling like I've been working all night. Because at night, my brain takes everything that's been going on and assembles it in this giant dream collage. It mixes all those made-up stories in my head with all the people I know.

The result? Scene after bizarre scene starring friends and family. Like a recent one, where Mel Francis, Louisa Edwards and I were all laying out topless with my Dad. Yeah, that's right, I went there. In my Dad's defense, even in the dream he had the good manners to stare off toward the horizon. Not that his behavior did anything to stop Louisa from flaunting herself. That dream hussy.

*Ahem* I digress. I guess the warning here is, if you know me, fix your hair and makeup because your time on the brain stage is coming. I alone in this? Or do some of the rest of you have excessively active brains? Is there a cure? I'd just like one night's worth of sleep where Gena Showalter's kids don't have pink hair. Or I'm not working at a strip club populated by the chicks from Romance Divas. Or Lara Santiago isn't trying to steal my cats and sell them on the Internet. I think you get the picture.

I know I do.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

I'm Not Really A Bad Blogger

I'm just away, up at my folks in Maryland. I'll be back home sometime tomorrow, and back to regular blogging on Thursday.

Try to talk amongst yourselves until then, okay?

Peace out.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Myspace: Need Input

Hello, my lovely and faithful blog readers! Did you see the bat signal go up? That's because I need your help. I'm working on an article for an upcoming issue of the RWR on using Myspace for promotion. If you have anything you'd like to tell me about your experience with Myspace, please email me with your story at kristen (at) romancedivas (dot) com.

If I use your story, you'll get quoted in the RWR and live in infamy for the rest of your life. Okay, maybe not, but it could happen.

Here are some things I'd like to know:

1. Did you design your space yourself or have help? If you had help, who helped you? If you didn't have help, what was your method?
2. Has your experience been positive or negative? Explain.
3. If you've ditched Myspace for another networking site, which one did you go to and why?
4. If you don't have a Myspace page, why not?
5. If you have a Myspace page, what motivated you to get one started?


On a side note, I somehow got a piece of tortilla chip in my eye last night. I know you're wondering how I've lived this long and if you know anyone who's more of a freak, but there you have it. Snack foods can attack. Consider yourself warned.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

My Brain, The Author

I loved the comments from everyone yesterday about editing and writing. We all have our own processes, don't we? Interesting stuff.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, I'm writing like a fiend. (Okay, I don't really know what that means - how exactly does a fiend write? But I digress...) The pages are coming pretty well and while I know it's very bare bones writing in some places, I'm okay with that. Like I said, it's the editing I live for. To quote Eva Gale, that's where I make it thick. (I love that!)

The troubling thing is, is that while I'm working furiously on this YA, my mind is busy writing a new story. A straight contemporary romance. No elements of paranormal at all. And when I say my mind is writing this, I mean scenes come to me out of this "other" book like I'm watching a movie. Big scenes. Clumps of scenes. I know their names, their backstories, their motivations, what their families are like...even the title of this new book.

*Sigh* I think I have no choice but to write it when this YA is done. How else will I get it out of my head? Does this happen to you?

And in an unrelated rant, why in the name of all that's good and pure is Christmas stuff starting to show up in the stores? Could we at least officially hit the first day of Autumn? Could we? Please? Gah.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

I'm A Writin' Machine

I'm doing pretty good on the writing front, despite being occasionally sidetracked to look for images that might make good bookcovers (hey, we all have our quirks). It's really amazing what you can accomplish when you put your mind to it and decide to ignore the usual impulses that distract you.

For instance, reading. I love to read! A good book usually has the power to pull me away from everything else and then that's all I'll do, read - until I reach The End. And I have a book like that in my possession now (an ARC of C.L. Wilson's Lord of the Fading Lands) however, my priority right now is getting my WIP to a certain point (100 pages).

I've committed to reach that goal in two weeks. Not just the 100 pages, mind you, but that 100 pages written and polished to high glossy shine, the kind editors won't be able to look away from. Which is just fine with me, because I love the editing. It's my favorite part. The actual writing, not so much.

Don't get me wrong, I like writing. I love the storytelling process, the creative explosion that happens that takes an idea to a full-fledged book. Love it. But the writing isn't what really gets me going. It's seeing what I've written, then tweaking it and making it better. Making it as good as it possibly can be, then putting it aside for a bit only to have another go at it later.

What's your favorite part of the process?

Monday, September 03, 2007

Happy Monday!

Most people have today off. Most people that aren't writers. We don't ever really have a day off. Even when we aren't writing, our brains are still cataloging real-life events that might work in a story someday, creating new characters, thinking of titles for books not even plotted out, eavesdropping on interesting conversations when a curious line of dialogue catches our attention.

We're writers. We're always at work.

But for the rest of you...have a great day off!