Dec 26, 2011

Morosis Monday

morosis ~ pathological feeble-mindedness

So . . . how was everyone’s Christmas? Was Santa good to you? Yeah, me too. Of course the best gift is the fact that it’s all over. :-)

Can anyone tell me why is it that we can spend so much time cleaning the house for the holidays, only to have to clean house after the holidays as well?

Anyway, I’ve decided that as a holiday treat to myself, I’m taking this week off from blogging. I’ll see you again on January 2nd.

Happy Holidays!

Dec 22, 2011

Christmas Music

To get you into a Christmassy mood for the weekend, I'm sharing a few more of my favourite Christmas songs with you.

I love Celtic Woman, and the Carol of the Bells is one of my favourite carols, so I feel very lucky to have found a video of them singing it.

Even if you don't like Elvis, I'm sure you'll like hearing his rendition of this old favourite. The video only has his voice, not his image, but you can't have everything.

This is another all-time favourite, and I love the little lead-in to it at the beginning. :-)

For some more Christmas music, tomorrow you can check out my other blog Random Writings for some Trans-Siberian Orchestra.

Dec 21, 2011

Hump Day Hunk

Ho ho ho! I think Santa has a present for you under that hat! ;-)

Dec 19, 2011

Miscellanarian Monday

miscellanarian ~ writer of miscellanies

Well, the tree is up and I even managed to decorate it. I’m finding it real hard to get into the Christmas spirit, what with all the rain we’ve been having lately. Twice last week I wore my spring coat for my morning walk. I’ve pretty much given up on a white Christmas this year.

Managed to get all of my out of town presents in the mail last week. I suspect a couple of them will be a tad late, but it couldn’t be helped. Anyway, better late than never, right?

Didn’t get nearly as much writing and editing done as I’d have liked to last week. It was just one of those weeks . . . Not only did the grey, dismal, rainy weather depress the hell out of me, I ended up with a series of migraines. ‘Tis the season. *sigh*

What’s On For This Week:

Tuesday: As I write this (late Sunday night) I’ve got nothing. If I figure something out by Tuesday, I’ll post it. If I don’t, I won’t. :-)

Wednesday: Another Christmasy hump day hunk for your viewing pleasure. ;-)

Thursday: Tis the season . . . for more Christmas music!

Friday: Chapter 54 of Fire. This is the end. However, the chapter ran a little long so part one is Friday and part two is Saturday.

Random Thoughts

Monday: Part 8 of the parts of speech. This final part is the Interjection.

Wednesday: Chapter 32 of Shades of Errol Flynn. Uh,oh. What did Jessica do now? :-)

Friday: More Christmas music to get you in the holiday spirit.

Also this week:

The new prompt is still up over at Rattles Flash Fiction. The deadline has been extended to January 13th so you have plenty of time to come up with your thousand words for The Old Sofa.

The previous two anthologies are now available in print as well as e-format. At the Water’s Edge is available through Brazen Snake Books, Amazon, , Smashwords, and Barnes & Noble. As well, you can find In A Dark Place at Brazen Snake Books, Amazon, Smashwords, and Barnes & Noble. The electronic version is only .99 cents while the print version is only $5.99 (+1.25 shipping & handling). Pick up your copies today!

I have a poetry group meeting tomorrow night, and I’m determined not to miss it. If I get my gingerbread made today then I might even bring a little treat with me. If not, they’ll only get a poem. :-)

I really need to update my Goodreads soon. The books I’ve finished are starting to stack up.

I’m not doing a lot of baking for Christmas this year, just some gingerbread and the kid requested pinwheel cookies (which are a pain in the butt to make). And I’ll have to do peanut butter squares for my sister. And if I do them for her, I’ll have to do them for the hubby as well. Maybe I’ll give shortbread another try as well. I haven’t tried any since I got my new oven (several years ago) so maybe that will make a difference. I remember my mother’s shortbread – it was so white, and light and fluffy . . . Mine turn out flat and greasy, no matter how many recipes I try. And trust me, I’ve tried out just about every recipe there is.

I started catching up my journal on the weekend and I’d like to finish catching up and then start making entries on a regular basis. If nothing else, it makes it much easier to write snail mail letters to my sister.

On the 21st, I will have a guest post up on Writer Revealed. The lovely Dolly Garland has a really cool series on Bookshelf Snooping. In fact, you don’t have to wait until the 21st, check it out ahead of time to see what the other participants are reading. And you don’t want to miss her post on Blog Commenting either.

And that’s about all I can think of for my week. How about you? Are you ready for Christmas?

Dec 15, 2011

Spreading the Joy

You know, there are a lot of Christmas vidoes out there, but these are a few of my favourites.

Mistletoe and Holly – Frank Sinatra

O Tannenbaum – Nat King Cole

I was disappointed I couldn't find a video that shows Nat King Cole singing this, but at least you get to hear his angelic voice.

Where Are you Christmas - Faith Hill

Dec 13, 2011

A Christmas Parody

A Visit From the Computer Tech
by Carol R. Ward

’Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, just the optical mouse;
The cords were all strung to the PC with care
In hopes the technician soon would be there.
The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of interwebs danced in their heads;
The wife couldn’t take any more of this crap
So she went to bed while I took a nap.
When there on the screen there arose such a clatter
I sprang from the chair to see what was the matter.
Away to the keyboard I flew like a flash,
Grabbed up the mouse and gave it a bash.
The monitor gleamed with a brilliant blue glow
The sight made my eyes tear as I shouted, “No!”
And what to my wondering eyes should appear
But a security warning that made my eyes tear.
With an attack on my drivers, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment my computer was sick.
More rapid than eagles the popups they came,
And I whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;
“Now Trojan, now Wormy, now BankerFox vixen!
A technician’s coming, my computer he’s fixin’.
By installing protection ,a blocker, a wall!
And then he’ll delete you, delete one and all!”
And then, in a twinkling, I heard it oncemore,
A van pulling up, then a knock on the door.
I opened the door with a feeling profound,
And into the house came the tech with a bound.
He was dressed all in blue from his head to his toe
And his jacket was covered with a sprinkling of snow.
A box full of tools was grasped in his hand
And he looked like an angel, come down to land.
His eyes, they were bloodshot, his face was unshaven
From his pocket he pulled a business card graven.
He was balding and old, and I think he had fleas,
And I said to him, “Sir, this way, if you please.”
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And in a few moments pulled the plug with a jerk.
“The mother board’s fried,” he said, shaking his head.
“And the rest of your hard drive looks like it’s dead.”
Then he packed up the tower and picked up his tools
“Gotta watch these old ‘puters, they’re stubborn as mules.”
He walked to his van, my computer in hand
And I had to admit, this did not go as planned.
And I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
“Happy Christmas to all, no more surfing to-night.”

Dec 12, 2011

Maximalism Monday

maximalism ~ uncompromising adherence to extreme demands

The Super Mega Death Cold From Hell is still hanging in there, and the hubby’s got the cough part of it back, which means it’s setting up camp in his lungs. At least mine is only in the sinuses, but it’s still causing mega headaches.

We went Christmas shopping on Saturday and knocked off over half our list, including all of the kids. Go us! Then Sunday the hubby braved the wind and the cold to get the outdoor lights up and the (undecorated) tree is sitting in the living room.

I felt a little lost last week, with no NaNoing to do. Granted there were still a few holes that need to be filled in my NaNo novel, but it’s just not the same.

I’d like to thank Heidi Sutherlin and Jamie DeBree for allowing me to interview them last week. I guess I don’t suck at interviews quite as badly as I thought. This is something I’m considering for the New Year, starting to feature an author once or twice a month, but it will be over at Random Writings. Don’t worry, I’ll make announcements here and provide links for when it happens.

Yesterday I bulldozed shovelled cleaned off my desk again. It’s amazing how quickly “stuff” accumulates when you’re busy writing 55K words. Now my office is all nice and neat again. Okay, it’s dusty as all get out, but at least it’s neat. :-)

What’s On For This Week:

I really should have spaced out my two author interviews last week so I could feature one of them this week, but *shrugs* hind sight is always 20/20.

Tuesday: A Christmas poem. My parody of A Visit From St. Nicholas

Wednesday: Another Christmasy hump day hunk for your viewing pleasure. Maybe even two because I have an extra and I can’t decide which to use. ;-)

Thursday: Tis the season . . . for Christmas music!

Friday: Chapter 53 of Fire. Jeez, isn’t this thing ever going to end?

Random Thoughts

Monday: Part 7 of the parts of speech. This week it’s the Preposition.

Wednesday: Chapter 31of Shades of Errol Flynn. So what’s this Well of Power, and what’s with the pointed look Ewan gave Jessica? :-)

Friday: More Christmas music to get you in the holiday spirit.

Also this week:

The new prompt is still up over at Rattles Flash Fiction. The deadline has been extended to January 13th so you have plenty of time to come up with your thousand words for The Old Sofa.

The previous two anthologies are now available in print as well as e-format. At the Water’s Edge is available through Brazen Snake Books, Amazon, , Smashwords, and Barnes & Noble. As well, you can find In A Dark Place at Brazen Snake Books, Amazon, Smashwords, and Barnes & Noble. The electronic version is only .99 cents while the print version is only $5.99 (+1.25 shipping & handling). Pick up your copies today if you’re looking for some inspiration or just a good read.

Yeah, so the schedule thing I keep talking about? I’m not going to worry about it until the New Year. Seriously? There’s too much other stuff going on with the coming holidays that I wouldn’t normally be doing, so trying to figure out a schedule is pretty useless.

Even though Fire’s not finished on my blog, I’m starting the edits for it this week. And there’s a lot of them. ;-)

As much as I hate the thought of it, I need to spend some time cleaning out the guest room and my work room, just in case my sister and her family make up their minds and come visit at Christmas. I suspect I won’t hear anything for sure until right before they arrive, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Speaking of sorry . . . my plants are a little sorry looking right now, so if I have time I’m going to try and give them a little TLC. I did water them on the weekend, so a couple of them are looking perkier, but my Wandering Jews need some clipping/repotting. I think this is my last chance with them. If I can’t take better care of the ones in the pots then I’m going to stop potting them. I’ve got a couple that are growing hydroponically, and they’re doing great.

And that’s pretty much my week ahead. How about you? Are you ready for Christmas?

Dec 8, 2011

Interview With Jamie DeBree

Sit back, relax, and have a cup of tea. This is going to be a long post, but the subject makes it well worth the reading. They say that variety is the spice of life. If this is true then my guest today must be spicy indeed! She’s a writer, a blogger, a wife, a web-mistress, a tea connoisseur, and she even makes her own dog food, and she does it all with long, beautifully made up nails. Her latest book, Angel Eyes, puts the 'thrill' back in thriller, and will keep you up nights, shivering in bed with the lights on.

When psychologist Jake Werner is called to the hospital in the middle of the night, he’s shocked to find that one of his interns has been attacked, and her eyes have been cut out. The closest thing she has to family at the time, Werner is automatically a suspect. After his alibi checks out, stone-cold Special Agent Kate Paige asks for his help in profiling the person responsible. The monster they eventually discover is far worse than they ever could have imagined...

Angel Eyes is available at Brazen Snake Books, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords.

For those who aren’t familiar with my blog and haven’t heard me go on and on about how awesome you are, tell us a little about yourself.

Leave it to a writer to ask another writer to come up with a new/different bio on the spot. I mean, shouldn’t you be saving the torture for your characters? ;-)

Hmm…well, I live in south central Montana, which is the high plains side of the state, not the wild mountainous side that everyone wants to visit (Yes, we have an airport. No, I don’t own horses, and haven’t ridden one since high school.). I sleep around 4.5 hours per night because my brain likes to keep busy, and I have far too many interests for my own good. I read a plaque when I was in high school that “The best way to know life is to love many things.” (I forget who that’s attributed to). I took it to heart. My personality type is INTJ – that’s 100% introvert and one of the rarer personality types. Basically it means I think a lot, I don’t do well in large groups (prefer one-on-one interactions), and I’m very direct. I’m not right or left brained, but tend to use both halves equally, which also makes me an odd duck. Too analytical for many creative people to be comfortable with, and too creative for the purely analytical.

And that’s probably more than you actually wanted to know…

Did you always want to be a writer? If not what did you want to be?

I’ve wanted to be a great many things – a fighter jet pilot, an astronaut a doctor, a lawyer, a professor, a librarian…you’ll note that none of those has anything to do with sports. The one thing I never wanted to do was to be a programmer like my dad. And that’s what I ended up doing for my day job, though I program web sites, which is vastly more entertaining than the kind of work he does.

I’ve wanted to be a writer since high school, but being the practical person I am, with parents who encouraged me to find a “real career” to support my “writing hobby”, I never dared to think I could someday make a living as a writer until just recently. Now I dare to dream…but we’ll see. I am glad to have a decent day job to pay the bills while I pursue the writing career.

Where do you get your ideas?

Everywhere. Watching people (anyone I don’t know – I can’t write about people I know, and they don’t even inspire me), a piece of art, a song, a photo…it doesn’t take much to plant the seed of a plot in my head.

Do you ever get writer’s block? If so, how do you get past it?

Nope – I don’t believe in writer’s block. If the story feels like it’s not working one way, I just look at where my characters are and where I’m trying to have them go, and then do the opposite. Normally they know better than I do what’s supposed to happen next, so I follow their lead. Basically it’s not me that’s blocked, it’s that I’m not trusting and following the characters closely enough.

How long does it usually take you to write a book, from the original idea to finishing writing it?

That’s a very good question. Because I serialize most of my drafts, and because I publish my own work, I don’t hold myself to any specific word count. So I start writing with the general idea in mind, and when the story’s done, I stop. Some novel ideas I’ve had turned into novellas, some short story ideas I have run far longer than I’d planned. It takes as long as it takes – as much as I might want to rush it, I try to let it play out the way it needs to.

I write around 500-800 words per day 5 to 6 days per week…so if I were to work on one novel (50k words) every day, I’d have the draft finished in about 2 months. I never work on just one draft at a time though, so it takes several months to draft a novel/novella, and around 6 -8 weeks to write a novelette/short story.

Which of your books were easier/harder to write than the others?

I don’t know if I can say any of them were easier or harder – they are what they are, and every book is different. My last erotica novelette this year has been difficult, but it’s because I need to pin down some pretty interesting emotional motivations, and all the chaos in my personal and work life makes it tough for me to get into that mindset sometimes. Well, and Desert Heat, one of my romantic suspense novels was hard because the main character isn’t all that likable – but it’s who she is, and the way she needs to be, so I didn’t have any choice but to write her that way and hope that while most wouldn’t like her, some would empathize with her.

Do you have a favourite out of the books you have written? If so why is it your favourite?

Nope. The one I’m working on at any given time is always my favourite ... and then when it’s done, I’m tired of it and ready to move on to the next shiny new idea.

Do you have a favourite character from your books? Why is he/she your favourite?

Not really…though I am rather morbidly fascinated with the antagonists in my thriller stories. I think it’s the complexity…I’m most interested in characters with complex or dual personalities.

How much reading do you typically do?

At least a little every day on my lunch break. When I’m on a reading “binge”, I can read a book a day or even a couple. When I don’t get reading time in, I get pretty crabby. I normally have several books going at once, so I can choose according to my mood on any given day.

Which is better, ebooks or print books?

For me, it depends. I love collecting old hard cloth-bound books – antiques, normally of the classics. And the old etiquette books I have just wouldn’t be the same on screen. But for everyday reading? Ebooks, hands down. No need for storage, easy to read one-handed (important, since I’m normally eating or hanging onto a tea cup while I read), and far easier to carry around than paperbacks. I hate actually *reading* a hardcover…so I never buy modern books in that medium. If not for my husband who still reads print, I’d buy all my books in digital format. As it is, we buy thrillers in paperback so we can share.

What are you reading right now?

“Seized by the Sheik” by Anna Voss Peterson (Harlequin Intrigue)
“The Donzerly Light” by Ryne Douglas Pearson (suspense)
“The Big Sky, By and By” by Ed Kemmick (true local color stories by a local journalist)
“A Walk in the Snark” by Rachel Thompson (I can’t decide what it is…but might be a bit snarky for my personal taste, so aptly named)
“The Role of a Lifetime” by Jennifer Shirk (sweet romance)

How many blogs do you have?

Seriously? You’re going to make me count? *sigh*

Fine – total blogs (writing and not): 11 (though one of those is a Halloween blog only updated a few months of the year)

Aside from all those blogs to maintain, you also have a day job, a publishing business, a husband, two dogs, and a home to take care of. How do you manage to juggle all of that? Or have you mastered the art of cloning?

Not well, at the moment. LOL I’m drowning right now, but I can’t bear to give any of it up, so I’m working on finding that balance with several changes I’ll be making in the new year. I may not be able to have it all, but dang it, I’ll have as much of it as I possibly can…

What’s the one piece of advice you’d give to an aspiring author?

Write what you want to write. Don’t worry about who’s going to read it, or how you’ll get it published, or any of those extraneous things until you have several pieces of work under your belt. Trust your characters to show you the story, and be open to wherever that happens to lead, even if it’s uncomfortable to you. That’s where the gold is.

What can we expect from you in the future?

In terms of books? More romantic suspense, more erotica, and more thrillers. I haven’t lined out next year’s publishing schedule yet, but it will be another busy one, for sure. I’m currently working on the second book in my Fantasy Ranch romantic suspense series, a stand alone romantic suspense, a really creepy thriller novella and I’ve got the theme for next year’s erotica collection and the first story all plotted out. I have enough ideas to last me well into the future.

Is there anything else you’d like to say?

I think I’ve probably gone on long enough, don’t you? ;-)

* ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *

I’d like to thank Jamie for taking the time to answer all my questions. Check out her website at Jamie DeBree or connect with her on Twitter or Facebook.

She currently has four serials she updates on a weekly basis. In order of update, they are:
The Fantasy Ranch series, updated on Tuesdays. The current novel here is the Minister’s Maid, a romantic suspense.
Writing as Alex Westhaven, check out Animal, updated on Wednesdays. This is a thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat.
If you’re looking for a Naughty Encounter, try her alter ego Trinity Marlow. The current story in the Working Stiffs collection is The Paramedic, updated on Thursdays. Caution, these stories will melt the ice off your mukluks, and are definitely NSFW!
Can't get enough romantic suspense? Have a peek at The Variety Pages. The story featured here is Falling in Public, and is updated every Friday.

And think I was lying about the tea and the nails I mentioned at the top of this page? Check out Tea on Tap and Nail Art Tuesday.

Dec 6, 2011

Interview With Heidi Sutherlin

Heidi Sutherlin is a woman who wears many hats. In her own words, she’s a: “Blogger, Graphic Designer, Cover Artist, Crafty Wench and general Girl About the Universe.” And as if that weren’t enough, she’s also a writer – and what a writer she is! Her debut novel, Brothers In Betrayal, is a fast paced, action packed, romantic suspense that will keep you on the edge of your seat.

Elite Pacific Northwest software designer, Grace Mason is not the criminal that Special Agent Noah Jeffries expected to find.

Unaware that she's a suspected accomplice in an arms smuggling ring, Grace struggles to cope with the mysterious and disturbing changes in the company that she helped to build. When the danger begins to escalate she has no choice but to place her life in the hands of a man who threatens her control and makes her want what she promised herself she'd never take. Grace couldn't have known that falling for the sexy FBI agent would make her the focus of a dead man's vendetta.

Now Noah must uncover more than the details in a smuggling case as a betrayal from his past threatens the future of a woman he never meant to care for.

Get your copy now at Brazen Snake Books. It’s also available in e-book or print form at Amazon, Smashwords, and Barnes and Noble.

You’re a graphic artist by trade, what got you started writing?

I've been writing...well...always. My mom is a wonderful writer and always encouraged me to write. I was a part of and later the editor of my high school newspaper, and started college as a journalism major. I may have changed my major to Graphic Design, but never stopped writing. I didn't seriously think of writing a novel until just a couple of years ago, and the rest is, as they say, history.

What kinds of things do you write?

I write fiction novels. Romantic suspense, paranormal romance and category romance are the genres that I'm currently working in. However, I have a deep and enduring love of classic scifi, cyberpunk and steam punk and plan to take the plunge into worlds of my own sometime soon.

Where do you get your ideas?

They sort of germinate on their own. Some come in snippets from personal situations or social vignettes that I witness. Others come at me all at once. For instance, while sitting in the stands at our local rodeo last year the idea for A PICKUP MAN FOR KATE just washed over me. I sat there as the entire story unfolded for me. By the time the dust had settled and we were packing up our stuff, I had an entire, ready to sit down and write book. True, it's evolved a bit, but that's how it was born.

Do you ever get writer’s block? If so, how do you get past it?

I don't, actually. I don't sit down to write religiously every day. I'm a binge and purge writer. So, if the build up of words isn't ready, I just don't attempt to write any. I've learned that if I do, I simply cause myself more grief in the end. I do all of my plotting and character building in my head and when its ready I sit down and write it out in one go. So, putting it off only costs actually writing time, but the work is still being done as the stories evolve on their own.

How much reading do you typically do?

I read every day. Every day. I don't sleep a lot and tend to read a book a day, sometimes more, sometimes less. I'm a fast reader and use it as my comfort, my therapy, my sanity saver and my endless supply of happy endings.

Which is better, ebooks or print books?

Tough question. I choose print books with ebooks as a close second. Personally, I see them both working in harmony. Neither one really replaces the other, as they each have their own uses and virtues.

What are you reading right now?

I just finished Nora Roberts' CHASING FIRE. It was excellent, by the way. I'm just starting to read Lisa Jackson's LOST SOULS.

You own your own business, tell us a little about it.

My Creative Pursuits, is the culmination of years of not taking orders well. I decided to start my own boutique graphic design business and while I handle all types of graphic design projects from print business (brochures, logos, business cards, etc) to web sites, my focus is cover art for independently published authors. I wanted to provide professional cover art to the indie author community that would compete with the bigger publishing houses on a budget that is small publishing friendly. I've had the opportunity to work with some amazing authors and make quite a few friends in the bargain.

Aside from running your business, you also have a four-year-old (and a black lab) to wrangle. How do you work writing into the mix?

I only write at night. As a night person and a mommy, this makes the most sense. Luckily, for all involved this works out well.

What’s the one piece of advice you’d give to an aspiring author?

Don't judge your writing midstream. Just as in art, stopping to pass judgement on a project before it's done is not only foolish but needlessly damaging. Just keep writing until the end and then remember that all projects are inherently liquid in nature. Ever changeable, always malleable, they shift and alter to what they need to be easily. If you can't look at something favourably, then put it away until you can. In other words: It's all good.

What can we expect from you in the future? More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?

With every genre I read I think to myself, "I want to write one of these." A dangerous thought, but it definitely implies that at some point I could write anything from regency, to sci fi, to the cyberpunk that I adore.

The near future, however holds the next book in the series I began with BROTHERS IN BETRAYAL, hopefully to be available this spring. I have five other books in process which include three romantic suspense, a category romance and a paranormal romance. So many words, so little time.

Is there anything else you’d like to say?

Only a very big thank you for having me, Carol. It's such an exciting time, the release of my first book as definitely held up to the hype. Thanks for helping me share it!

Thank you Heidi for agreeing to be my guinea pig first interview!

Look for Heidi on the net here:


Dec 5, 2011

Macroscian Monday

macroscian ~ one with a long shadow; one who inhabits polar regions

So . . . the big news for last week is that I won the NaNo challenge for the 4th year running. This means I now have four unedited NaNo drafts sitting on my hard drive. Or maybe that should be USB key – I don’t trust my lap top enough to leave the only copy on its hard drive. I think next year my NaNo should consist of 30 days of straight editing. :-)

Imagine my surprise when I look back over last month and realize that despite NaNo I got all my blog posts written and up in time. Of course I wasn’t doing my Tuesday non-fiction series, and the poetry’s on hiatus, but still . . . Okay, I was pretty late with last week’s instalment of Shades of Errol Flynn, but it did get up there eventually. And I was pretty much in a hermit’s cave as far as the social networks went so when it was time to emerge from the cave it was pretty much: “Where’d everybody go?” Hmm, maybe getting a handful of blog posts done wasn’t that great of an accomplishment after all.

I still have the Super Mega Death Cold From Hell. Doesn’t seem to matter whether or not I take cold medicine for it, so I only take it before bed now so I can sleep.

And I have no hat yet (you know, my reward for completing NaNo). I went shopping for one yesterday, but the only store to the East of where I live that might have had it, is gone now. *sigh* So this week my search will take me to the West. And if all else fails I can order my hat on-line.

What’s On For This Week:

Something different for this week, I’ve scheduled in a couple of author’s interviews.

Tuesday: Author’s interview with Heidi Sutherlin.

Wednesday: Another hump day hunk for your viewing pleasure. And in keeping with the spirit of the holidays, the next few hunks will be Christmas themed. ;-)

Thursday: Author’s interview with Jamie DeBree

Friday: Chapter 52 of Fire. You know, having Pyre blow up the planet is a legitimate option. Just sayin’. ;-)

Random Thoughts

Monday: Part 6 of the parts of speech. This week it’s the Conjunction.

Wednesday: Chapter 30 of Shades of Errol Flynn. Okay, Jessica made it onto the horse. The question is, will she be able to stay on it? :-)

Friday: NaNo’s over people, so no more excerpts. Instead I’ll be posting some of my favourite Christmas songs to show I’m not really the scrooge I pretend to be.

Also this week:

The new prompt is still up over at Rattles Flash Fiction. The deadline has been extended to January so you have plenty of time to come up with your thousand words for The Old Sofa. I finally got an idea for it myself so I’ll be working away on it this week.

The previous two anthologies are now available in print as well as e-format. At the Water’s Edge is available through Brazen Snake Books, Amazon, , Smashwords, and Barnes & Noble. As well, you can find In A Dark Place at Brazen Snake Books, Amazon, Smashwords, and Barnes & Noble. The electronic version is only .99 cents while the print version is only $5.99 (+1.25 shipping & handling). Pick up your copies today if you’re looking for some inspiration or just a good read.

I still need to come up with some kind of schedule for myself. Now that it’s post NaNo I can start by writing down what I do all day, when I do it, and how long I spend doing it. Sort of like keeping a food diary when you’re dieting. Then on the weekend I can map out some kind of schedule and hopefully get more accomplished during the day so I can have my evenings free for social networking, reading, and maybe the odd craft or two.

There’s still a bit of work to do on my NaNo novel and I’d like to continue to plug away at it this week. I had to skip over a couple of parts because they weren’t coming to me fast enough and I’d really like to mark this story as finished (except for the editing).

And that’s pretty much my week ahead. How about you? What will you be up to?

Dec 1, 2011

NaNo Report - Wrap-up OR
Things I’ve Learned From NaNo

I don’t know what it was this year, but I just didn’t feel the same buzz. In the past, even when I joined reluctantly I eventually got caught up in the whole NaNo spirit of things, that pull that keeps you going no matter what. But this year I really had to force myself to get the words out. At least until I got sick near the end.

But, as usual, I still managed to learn a few things about myself and my writing. So here are my pearls of wisdom, in no particular order:

Just because you kill a character off in the beginning, doesn’t mean they can’t become part of the story.

Sometimes it pays to be stubborn, sometimes it doesn’t.

Writing a NaNo novel is NOT like writing a serialized novel.

I do not get inspired by staring out the window at the endless November rain. It should be snow, damn it!

No matter how far you fall behind, if the spirit is willing you can still catch up.

Next time I want a hat, I’m going to just go out and buy it, instead of torturing myself for it.

Star Wars marathons on the television are almost as good for background noise as Star Trek marathons.

If my characters want to have sex, I might as well let them or else they start doing really kinky things.

Stride “Spark” gum works better than coffee as a pick-me-up. And it’s cheaper, too!

Sometimes, 50,000 words is not worth putting your life on hold for.

It is possible to type from a reclined position when your sinuses won’t stop dripping.

I get more writing accomplished in my office than the living room – even when I’m sick.