Tuesday, August 31, 2010

My favorite titles.

I wanted to talk about my favorite books on writing. Every author has her go-to's for inspiration and help, and here are mine.

How to Suppress Women's Writing

How can one live without Joanna Russ's How to Suppress Women's Writing?

People love to denigrate our genre. This book gives an insightful and quirky look at how much and how little attitudes towards women's words have changed. It taught me just what kinds of horrible internalized sexism colored what I wrote, how I viewed other women, and worst of all, what I did to myself.

Making a Literary Life

Making a Literary Life by Elizabeth See.
A far greater writer than I'll ever be says this:
If everyone who wants to be a writer would read this book there would be many more good writers, many more happy writers, and editors would be so overwhelmed by sweetness they would accept many more good books. So what are you waiting for? Read it! Ursula K. Le Guin

Write Away: One Novelist's Approach to Fiction and the Writing Life

Write Away by Elizabeth George.
From Publisher's Weekly:
Here's a useful book for the novice writer battling the fears and insecurities that attend when she contemplates her first novel....George illustrates her points with passages from both her ownworks and those of numerous writers she admires (Martin Cruz Smith,Barbara Kingsolver, Louise Erdrich, Michael Dorris), this remains more of a how-I-do-it book than a how-to-do-it book. Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Unlike PW, I'll say that this book is good even for experienced writers. I love her examples - they illustrate her points brilliantly.

I feel that the most important book on my shelf remains Against Our Will by Susan Brownmiller. I'm not going to kid you - this is a painful and devastating book, whether you have been a victim of sexual assault or not. But it endlessly reminds me of what I feel is the great gift that romance gives every reader: That her pleasure is central to life, that her consent should never dismissed or belittled, and that each of us deserves to be heard.

Against Our Will: Men, Women, and Rape

Saturday, August 28, 2010

A different kind of Give-away.

I'm donating two of my one-of-a-kind, hand-painted fans for the Rose City Romance Writers raffle basket donation to the Emerald City Romance Writers Conference.

The ECRWC is October 1-3 this year. It is one of the best writing conferences on the West Coast and every year, they hold a fund-raising raffle of gorgeous gift baskets.

I hope they like my fans. :)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Branching out a little.

I'm the Wednesday blogger over at the Cascade Literary Agency blog. This week is everyone's introductions.

Not my strength, but I did get to indulge my love of parenthetical statements.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Brain stuff.

Yeah, yeah, we all know I have issues around worrying and over-thinking. I've done lots of good brain work, and I've found ten cognitive fallacies that contribute to my tendencies.

Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy
(swiped shamelessly from Feeling Good by David Burns, MD)

1. All-or-nothing thinking aka dichotomous thinking:
A tendency to evaluate things in black & white, absolute categories. Either you get straight A's, or you're a failure. Either the room is spotless, or it is a sty.

2. Overgeneralization:
"You arbitrarily conclude that one thing that happened to you once will occur over and over again....The pain of rejection is generated almost entirely from overgeneralization. In its absence, a personal affront is temporarily disappointing, but cannot be seriously disturbing."

3. Mental Filter aka: selective abstraction:
"You pick out a negative detail from a situation, and dwell on it exclusively, thus perceiving that the whole situation is negative."

4. Disqualifying the positive
For example - how most of us respond to compliments.

5. Jumping to conclusions by
a. Mind Reading and
b. Fortune telling
What, you mean I *can't* read people's minds and foresee the future??? Dammit!

6. Magnification and Minimization aka catastrophic thinking

7. Emotional Reasoning
You feel it, therefore, it must be a fact.

8. Should statements
Motivation via shoulds sucks.

9. Labeling and Mislabeling
"I'm a ____" fill in the blank.

The Mother of Guilt - you assume responsibility for a negative even when there is no basis for doing so.

Branching out a little.

Jalda Ostrich Crescent Evening Bag,Plum,one size
Jalda Ostrich Crescent evening bag in plum

A girl needs more than just shoes in her life. :)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Ah, Vacation.

Mostly. :)

The Charming Man is on vacation and I'm loving having him around so much. The best part - he completely understands and even appreciates when I leave him to do his own thing so I can work.

Lately, I've been working on getting my "World Reference" in order. I'm putting all my character pictures and the book plots into one three ring binder. Soon I'll have their GMC sheets (remember those?) and their descriptions all in one place. If I want to write a multi-book series, I refuse to let myself forget everyone's eye color or height. :)

I'll post pictures of it soon.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Occasional poetry.

A little something by me.

The Ten-Minute Warning

Lilac put the final touches on her
black eyeliner,
and pulled on her
black fishnet stockings.
She adjusted her
black corset and her
black tulle skirt and retied her
black Doc Marten's.
She walked out the door when her
black cell phone beeped twice.
She checked the text message.
She twirled on the sidewalk, smirked, and said,
"Everyone will be so jealous."

Rosemary Kerk was feeding her baby,
rejoicing in the splatters when her
cell phone beeped twice.
She checked the text message.
She stared at it,
"No! I won't!"
and she threw the phone against the wall.
She picked the spoon back up and continued to feed her child.
She forgot some things are not negotiable.

Josephine was sitting at her desk when her
cell phone beeped twice.
She checked the text message.
She didn't even save her work; she just walked out of her cubicle.
She shed her scarf
in the aisle,
her shoes
by the windows.
She left a trail of clothes
on her way to the elevator until
she stood naked in the rain, her mouth open to drink.

Trish O'Darby was looking at a pair of
absolutely delicious
Jimmy Choo's through the sparkling store window when her
cell phone beeped twice.
She checked the text message.
In less than 2 minutes, she was wearing those shoes.
She minced into the next storefront that read,
"Wills! Five Minutes or Less, Guaranteed!"
She walked out with three minutes to go,
and began dialing.
"Hello, Helen? Trish. I'm sorry."
"Hello, Mom? Trish. I'm sorry."
"Hello, Lana? I'm sorry."
She was apologizing to her father when everything went dark.

Nix Ricard looked both ways before he stepped off the curb.
He was mentally reviewing the presentation he was giving this afternoon when his
cell phone beeped twice.
He checked his text message.
He stepped back onto the curb and dialed.
His wife's crisp voice crackled in his ear when she said, "Hello?"
And Nix told his wife the words she’d never heard enough.
"I love you.
I have loved you since the day you stepped on my foot in fifth grade.
You have been the greatest joy of my life," he said.
She laughed. "Nix, did you have a liquid lunch?”
He took a deep breath.
"I couldn't tell you this before, but darling, you have to believe me,
I thought it every single day.
You are the jewel in the crown of night.
Kiss the children for me.
Kiss them for me every day and every night.
Tell them their Daddy loved them.
Do you understand, my sweet? It's time.”
She understood. Nix could hear her sobs.
"I have to go now.”
He hung up on her tears,
then looked to the sky, and closed his eyes.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

My very first give-away.

I hand-painted this fan for express purpose of giving it away to some awesome person. :)  It's the first in what I hope will be a long stretch in regular contests/giveaways/fun. It's signed and numbered (#1).

It's perfect for hot days, putting up on your wall, or giving it to someone you love. If you want to be my first fan (ahahahhahhhaaa!), be the first person to tell me what nickname I use for my handsome husband here on my blog. :)

Wednesday, August 4, 2010


The actual quote from the end of the case against Proposition 8. MUCH REJOICING!!
Proposition 8 fails to advance any rational basis in
singling out gay men and lesbians for denial of a marriage license.
Indeed, the evidence shows Proposition 8 does nothing more than
enshrine in the California Constitution the notion that oppositesex
couples are superior to same-sex couples. Because California
has no interest in discriminating against gay men and lesbians, and
because Proposition 8 prevents California from fulfilling its
constitutional obligation to provide marriages on an equal basis,
the court concludes that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010


I just emailed the newly revised Dracula's Secret to my agent, Jewelann Cone.

And there was MUCH rejoicing!