Sunday, August 31, 2008

Thursday, August 28, 2008


the authors of Romance Unleashed came up with a brilliant idea - Unleash Your Story. Readers and writers can contribute to this fundraiser for Cystic Fibrosis by participating in a read-a-thon or write-a-thon. Take part individually or as a team (maybe your local RWA or online community). Individuals can match their pace with best-selling author Debbie Macomber. The challenge begins September 1 and lasts throughout the month. Register at the CFF web site.

I'm going to be writing One Last Fling. It's outlined to the teeth, so it's time to get the words on the page. If you don't think you'll be able to participate yourself, sponsor me at Every little bit helps those struggling with Cystic Fibrosis.

Monday, August 25, 2008


at Romance Divas !

AUGUST 25 - 30, 2008
"Plotting From the Inside Out"
Bestselling author Susan Wiggs will show you her approach to plotting that starts with premise and character. Participants will learn how to grow the story events from that kernel.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Labor Day Book In A Weekend!

Eharlequin is doing a Book-In-A-Weekend! That makes Book-in-a-Week of Book-in-a-Month look easy! They start Friday, August 29th and go through Monday, September 1st! Want to join in? Record your progress here.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Beaching it...

A few weekends back I did a book fair in Lincoln City. The weather could not have been better, and neither could the company. My Rose City Romance Writers chaptermates Minnette Meador, Terri Reed and Megan Clark made the event especially fun. (You can't see Megan in the picture, but let's not fault Hubba Bubba...he was holding the princess at the time!)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Monday, August 18, 2008

Making Believe

I'm chatting up Debra Parmley on Make Beleive Mondays today.

And I'll own it. I didn't write this weekend. Rewrote the synopsis until the heroine was knocked up, which was quite the journey, but no forward motion on the story. I think my kidlets will be getting a movie this afternoon so I can get some words down...

Friday, August 15, 2008

Getting It Done

Why isn't it easier to write? I mean, I can spin a story in my head, no problem...but get it on paper? Yeah. Thank goodness for Kristen. She demanded the Romance Divas write at least one page I wrote my first scene in the new story. My first new story post-baby! And...I like it.


1342 / 50000 words. 3% done!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Amy Davis

BROWN: If you love brown, you're a real treasure for the right mate. Brown lovers tend to be warm and deep, sensitive to the needs and desires of their partners. Sex is a 24 hour a day thing. Where you can't say "I love you" often enough. Snuggling by the fire, walking in the rain or catching snowflakes on their tongue is a turn-on to a lover of brown. They need lots of time and privacy to make love, but their emotions are such that one harsh word could end the affair.

Health foods
Hazards to health
Anything sordid
Sloppy workers
Being uncertain

The "Take Charge" woman: outspoken and persuasive, confident and competitive

* Lovers engage in a battle of wills
* Mistaken identity
* Fear of commitment
* "I am a rock;" emotional detachment
* Accidental pregnancy
Foxes : Natural persuaders, quick-thinking, chameleon-like ability to blend and identify withothers. Tuned in to others needs, preferences. Negotiators, sales, clergy, PR, entertainers, relationship coaches.

The BOSS: a real go-getter, she climbs the ladder of success. This is a “take charge” female, who accepts nothing but respect. Reaching her goal post the most important thing in life to her, and she isn’t bothered by a few ruffled feathers along the way. Think Annette Bening in American Beauty, Candice Bergen in Murphy Brown, Cate Blanchett in Elizabeth.

Type One: The Reformer
The Rational, Idealistic Type: Principled, Purposeful, Self-Controlled, and Perfectionistic

Ones are conscientious and ethical, with a strong sense of right and wrong. They are teachers, crusaders, and advocates for change: always striving to improve things, but afraid of making a mistake. Well-organized, orderly, and fastidious, they try to maintain high standards, but can slip into being critical and perfectionistic. They typically have problems with resentment and impatience. At their Best: wise, discerning, realistic, and noble. Can be morally heroic.

Virgo! Virgo is the only zodiacal sign represented by a female. It is sometimes thought of as a potentially creative girl, delicately lovely; sometimes as a somewhat older woman, intelligent but rather pedantic and spinsterish. The latter impression is sometimes confirmed by the Virgoan preciseness, refinement, fastidious love of cleanliness, hygiene and good order, conventionality and aristocratic attitude of reserve.

They are usually observant, shrewd, critically inclined, judicious, patient, practical supporters of the status quo, and tend toward conservatism in all departments of life. On the surface they are emotionally cold, and sometimes this goes deeper, for their habit of suppressing their natural kindness may in the end cause it to atrophy, with the result that they shrink from committing themselves to friendship, make few relationships, and those they do make they are careful to keep superficial.

But the outward lack of feeling may, in some individuals born under this sign, conceal too much emotion, to which they are afraid of giving way because they do not trust others, nor do they have confidence in themselves and their judgments. This is because they are conscious of certain shortcomings in themselves of worldliness, of practicality, of sophistication and of outgoingness. So they bring the art of self concealment to a high pitch, hiding their apprehensiveness about themselves and their often considerable sympathy with other people under a mantle of matter-of-factness and undemonstrative, quiet reserve.

They are still waters that run deep. Yet in their unassuming, outwardly cheerful and agreeable fashion, they can be sensible, discreet, well spoken, wise and witty, with a good understanding of other people's problems which they can tackle with a practicality not always evident in their own personal relationships.

In marriage they can be genuinely affectionate, making good spouses and parents, but their love making is a perfection of technique rather than the expression of desire, and they must be careful not to mate with a partner whose sex drive requires a passion they cannot match.

They are intellectually enquiring, methodical and logical, studious and teachable. They combine mental ingenuity with the ability to produce a clear analysis of the most complicated problems. They have an excellent eye for detail but they may be so meticulous that they neglect larger issues. Also, although they are realists, they may slow down projects by being too exact.

Fastidious reticence and modesty become old-maidishness and persnicketiness; balanced criticism becomes carping and nagging; and concern for detail becomes overspecialization.

Virgoans are liable to indecision in wider issues and this can become chronic, turning molehills of minor difficulties into Himalayas of crisis. Their prudence can become guile and their carefulness, turned in on themselves, can produce worriers and hypochondriacs.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Beckett Hughes

RED: People who like red tend to be tigers in the sack. They are easily aroused and enjoy sex in every way imaginable. Once the sexual spark is ignited, it may take hours to extinguish. When two reds get together, the ensuing erotica could make Lady Chatterly blush. Lovers of red tend to be aggressors and weaker colors should be aware.

The LOST SOUL: a sensitive being, he understands. Tortured, secretive, brooding, and unforgiving. That’s this man. But he's also vulnerable. He might be a wanderer or an outcast. In work he's creative, but probably also a loner. Think Mel Gibson in Lethal Weapon, David Duchovny in The X-Files, Beast in Beauty and the Beast, Shrek.
The "theta" hero: Tortured and secretive, he's got a vulnerable heart and discerning eyes

* Inability to trust, especially opposite sex
* Some past incident, e.g., abuse, has left emotional scars
* Lovers engage in a battle of wills
* Mistaken identity

Type Three: The Achiever
The Success-Oriented, Efficient Type: Adaptive, Excelling, Driven, and Image-Conscious

Threes are self-assured, attractive, and charming. Ambitious, competent, and energetic, they can also be status-conscious and highly driven for advancement. They are diplomatic and poised, but can also be overly concerned with their image and what others think of them. They typically have problems with workaholism and competitiveness. At their Best: self-accepting, authentic, everything they seem to be-role models who inspire others.

Libra! There is a mellowness and sense of relaxation in the air as mankind enjoys the last of the summer sun and the fruits of his toil. Librans too are among the most civilized of the twelve zodiacal characters and are often good looking. They have elegance, charm and good taste, are naturally kind, very gentle, and lovers of beauty, harmony (both in music and social living) and the pleasures that these bring.

They have good critical faculty and are able to stand back and look impartially at matters which call for an impartial judgment to be made on them. But they do not tolerate argument from anyone who challenges their opinions, for once they have reached a conclusion, its truth seems to them self-evident; and among their faults is an impatience of criticism and a greed for approval. But their characters are on the whole balanced, diplomatic and even tempered.

Librans are sensitive to the needs of others and have the gift, sometimes to an almost psychic extent, of understanding the emotional needs of their companions and meeting them with their own innate optimism - they are the kind of people of whom it is said, "They always make you feel better for having been with them." They are very social human beings. They loathe cruelty, viciousness and vulgarity and detest conflict between people.

In their personal relationships they show understanding of the other person's point of view, trying to resolve any differences by compromise, and are often willing to allow claims against themselves to be settled to their own disadvantage rather than spoil a relationship. They like the opposite sex to the extent of promiscuity sometimes, and may indulge in romanticism bordering on sentimentality.
Their marriages, however, stand a good chance of success because they are frequently the union of "true minds". The Libran's continuing kindness toward his or her partner mollifies any hurt the latter may feel if the two have had a tiff. Nor can the Libran's spouse often complain that he or she is not understood, for the Libran is usually the most empathetic of all the zodiacal types and the most ready to tolerate the beloved's failings.
Librans can be surprisingly energetic, though it is true that they dislike coarse, dirty work. Although some are modestly content, others are extremely ambitious. With their dislike of extremes they make good diplomats but perhaps poor party politicians, for they are moderate in their opinions and able to see other points of view. They can succeed as administrators, lawyers (they have a strong sense of justice, which cynics might say could handicap them in a legal career), antique dealers, civil servants and bankers, for they are trustworthy in handling other people's money.

The finer things in life

Lions : Takes pride in family and point of view. Goal-oriented. Confident, love to win. People feel protected by lions. Sometimes impatient. CEOs, military, surgeons, pilots, managers, entrepreneurs.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Confession Time

Tomorrow I start...Beckett and Amy are coming...unless I change her name, which I might do...
I usually love starting a new story, but I'll let you in on a little secret. I'm terrified that with a baby to play with, I might not have the hours in the day to do everything...

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Book In A Week

The Official Book In A Week Group is having the program this week, Aug 11 - 17. My folks have the small boys, so it's just me and the baby girl. Think I can write a book in a week with a 3 month old baby?

If I do, I'm alerting the Guinness people. The beer or the world records, I'd deserve both!

Friday, August 08, 2008

Saturday Signing

I'm heading to the coast this weekend for the Lincoln City Book Fair to sign For Kicks. I haven't had a signing with it yet - there was a mix-up and they didn't have it at the Readers Luncheon. I'm nervous...more for how I'm going to manage the baby and boys than meeting people. I like people who read, so that's not an issue. But the baby will give me 90 minutes at most...and I need to be there from 11:30 until 3. So...I'll let you know how it goes. Or you can stop by and find out for yourselves!

I'll be in the plaza right next to Bob's Beach Books. The address of the store is 1747 NW Hwy 101, Lincoln City. (Weather willing, otherwise the backup is St. Augustine's a few blocks south at 1139 NW Hwy 101)

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Animal Personalities

Y'all know how I love my Point and Click Characterisation. And my addiction to wed quizzles. I don't know what it is about finding boxes to fit in, you know, so I can break out of them...

Anyway, I hadn't seen this one. Unfortunately it's in a book (PUT YOUR BIG GIRL PANTIES ON AND DEAL WITH IT) and not online for me to point and click. Still, I thought it worth blogging about...and I'm no the kind of blogger who talks Cheetos and dryer lint.

Golden Retrievers : Warm, supportive, caring. Enjoy interaction with others. Avoid confrontation, find harmony through compassion and empathy. Excell in kindness, affection. Social workers, nurses, teachers, personal coaches.

Otters : Spontaneous, playful, sensual, lovers of life. Thrive on recognition. Big hearts. Can work tirelesly when fascinated, not bogged down by details. Dreamers, intuitive. Writers, painters, actors, dancers.

Horses : Love to run, feel their muscles. Physical, enjoy training. Grounded in theit bodies. Use sports ri celebrate their energy. Gymnasts, bikers, hikers, runners, personal trainers.

Foxes : Natural persuaders, quick-thinking, chameleon-like ability to blend and identify with
others. Tuned in to others needs, preferences. Negotiators, sales, clergy, PR, entertainers, relationship coaches.

Lions : Takes pride in family and point of view. Goal-oriented. Confident, love to win. People feel protected by lions. Sometimes impatient. CEOs, military, surgeons, pilots, managers, entrepreneurs.

Beavers : Love information and analysis. Research and review. Analytical, methodical. Work at their own pace, which some think is slow or redundant. Purposeful, deliberate, patient. Historians, accountants, judges, scientists, IT professionals.

Owls : Enjoy conceptual thinking and long range planning. Sometimes called impractical. Like problem solving, not implementing solutions. Like to play what if... Philosophers, economists, professors the words of Miss Moo...who are you and what do you do?

Sunday, August 03, 2008

SAVING THE LEMONADE :: Knowing when NOT writing is the best thing to do

Writing isn’t like other jobs where you can take sick time, bereavement leave or my old favorite, mental health days. When your world swirls down the toilet, you’re stuck with blinking cursor, mocking you and your attempts to feel something other than horrid.

Last summer my life and career as an author hit a crossroads. I’d been struggling to work with a new editor, had two grandparents in the hospital, and needed to move to a bigger house. For once in my life, I decided to put myself first, opting to use the money we’d saved for a new home so that I could attend the RWA conference and work out some issues with my editor. I thought the choice was the right one for our family long term.

Except my editor and I didn’t seem to understand one another better after meeting face to face, and I returned home to find both of my grandparents had taken a turn for the worse. I spent the month of August trying to be a mother while traveling to southern Oregon and central California to connect with and care for people who I knew didn’t have much time left.

Oh, and try to figure out how to write a new story when I didn’t comprehend what was wrong with the last four.

August ended with a sonic boom. We took the boys to my grandfather’s funeral in Stockton, and then stopped in Medford at my parents house for the night on the way home. It was then and there, on the day I’d buried my grandfather, that my grandmother also passed. Thankfully I got to hold her hand.

Writing took a back seat as I mentally healed from the shock, only to find out a few weeks later that our family would be expanding unexpectedly. I knew this would change my writing goals for the year, but after the previous month, even my latest rejection didn’t phase me. If anything, it gave me the courage to go to my former editor and ask for her intervention in the problem.

I seemed to be keeping my head above water. Until my aunt died.

Six weeks, three deaths, one baby on the way. My creativity shut down, my mind set on permanent stun. And then we got some scary test results about the pregnancy. (No worries now, she’s genetically perfect.) I tried to write. I made every effort, tried dozens of writer’s block techniques that had done well for others. But what I write – light and flirty contemporary – didn’t flow with how I felt. Dark, scared, unsure.

And so I did the one thing all the ‘get over writers block’ tips tell you not to. I stepped away from the keyboard and gave it time. I read and walked and people watched until my mind started spinning again, until I began reworking endings to stories I was reading in my head.

Just like an athlete must rest after a physical injury, writers need to take a break after an emotional crisis. Yes, writing can be cathartic, and you can channel all that emotion into your work. But what we do as authors gives so much of ourselves, we need to make sure we have enough to give away before we push to the brink.

If I had pushed, I don’t think I’d even be writing this now. Writer’s block can be worked through, but emotional block takes time and patience. Don’t berate yourself when you miss opportunities because you need to heal.

When life hands you lemons, they will keep until you’re ready to make the lemonade. After all, romance writing is about the healing power of love, and we must love ourselves first.

Friday, August 01, 2008


I'm one of the featured authors this month at The Romance Studio, which is fun...except the Samhain buy links changed with the upgrade of My Bookstore And More. Isn't that always the way?

I was worried about Par For The Course...coming out during RWA, having a sports theme, releasing while MB&M did their upgrade...I shouldn't have bothered worrying. It's already #8 on the best seller list :)