I’m so Pretty – Beautiful Blogger Award

Yay! It’s Friday. Don’t forget to visit me at the Scribes for  – I am Not A-MUSEd!

Sabrina Garie has awarded me The Beautiful Blogger Award. Thank you Sabrina!

As most of you may have guessed, there are rules.

Rule #1 – I must share 7 things. Today, I’m going to be different and share fun facts and a secret or two about my characters. Let’s face it, you all must be sick of hearing about me!

Rule #2 – Pass this award to 7 bloggers. More on that later.

From Mystic Ink:

1. Devlin Ward has a potted plant. It’s name is Medusa on account of its snake-like fronds. He would never, ever admit that to anyone
since the real Medusa would not be pleased. And we all know what happens to men who make her angry. Let’s just say it’s not the kind of rock hard Devlin would enjoy.

2. Nix is the most independent of the fifty daughter’s of Nereus. She is adamant about earning her own money and making her own way in the world. Her Uncle Memphis fostered her independence by taking her on as an apprentice in his tattoo shop.

From The Undead Space Initiative:

3.  Cherry Cordial doesn’t like enclosed spaces. Once, when one her fellow vampires jokingly trapped her in a dark closet, she dumped dead fish in their beds for a week.

4. Jonathan, Cherry’s maker, first noticed her because of her beautiful singing voice. It was her rebellious spirit that made him turn her into a vampire. Later, whenever he’d complain about her sassy attitude, Cherry would remind him, “Tough cookies. This is what you signed up for. Don’t blame me that I have big mouth and know how to use it.”  Cherry would like to remind you to get your minds out of the gutter. She’s a stripper, not a whore. Just saying.

From Ascension:

5. Kyra was recruited into the FBI by her boss, Terence Lange after she beat him and hundreds of other veteran sharpshooters at a
regional competition. Lange is inherently distrustful of magic, but does trust Kyra. Both of their understanding of supernatural phenomena are about to be shaken up.

6. Valerian is a stickler for rules and order. Clutter drives him crazy and he can’t stand salt and vinegar chips. Galen uses this information to annoy Valerian every chance he gets. While the two are friends, Valerian is also Galen’s superior, and Galen’s cheekiness often gets him into trouble. Not that Galen would have it any other way!

And from my WIP:

7. This isn’t a character fact per se, but my latest WIP has something to do with fortune cookies and evil spirits. Don’t worry Mystic Ink fans, I am still working on Mystic Storm (Zephyr’s book), but I opted to complete this book first since it was flowing faster.

Seven Beautiful Blogs:

1. Writing Secrets of 7 Scribes – Stop by and say hello. We’re friendly, fun and love to dish about all kinds of topics.

2. Meggan Connors – She makes me laugh with her honesty and self-depreciating humor. I love Edinor and her travels. You have visit her blog to find out who or what Edinor is!

3. Janna Shay – Kind and generous, Janna always makes me smile. She’s also an incredibly supportive and I do appreciate it!

5. Marian Lanouette – A great blogger who shares great advice. Plus, she is one sexy lady. Have you seen her Facebook photo? Her debut novel – If I Fail –  comes out in September.

6. Leia Shaw – Whether she’s blogging at her own site (The Paranormal G-spot) or at Nights of Passion, she always has something interesting to say.

7. Julia Rachel Barrett – C’mon, did you think I wouldn’t pick the lovely Julia? Julia blogs every day and it’s always worth reading.

To the recipients of the Beautiful Blogger Award – go forth and share the beauty!

And feel free to share your favorite blog (s) with me! 

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Versatile Blogger Award

I must be doing something right because I’ve been awarded the Versatile Blogger Award by my Triberr mate – Larissa Reinhart.  Thank you Larissa!

With any blog award, there are rules. Rules which I will probably break, mostly because I’m running out of facts about myself.

But here they are for those of you that I pass this award onto.

Da Rules:

If you are nominated, you’ve been awarded the Versatile Blogger award.

  •  Thank the person who gave you this award. That’s common courtesy.
  •  Include a link to their blog. That’s also common courtesy — if you can figure out how to do it.
  •  Next, select 15 blogs/bloggers that you’ve recently discovered or follow regularly. ( I would add, pick blogs or bloggers that are excellent!)
  •  Nominate those 15 bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award — you might include a link to this site.
  •  Finally, tell the person who nominated you 7 things about yourself.

The Facts:

1. I love comic books, sci-fi and fantasy. So needless to say, this is a great time to be a fan of superheroes. ‘Nuff said.

2. I’m designated pooch-sitter for my mother’s dog whenever she goes out of town. Isn’t Holly cute? I caught her nibbling on my owl throw rug.  I was not amused.

Everyone wants to be a writer….

3. I’m not afraid of spiders. I think they’re kind of cool. Of course, most spiders where I live are not venomous enough to kill you either.

This guy or gal lived on my deck one summer.

4. I love hot abs! *Sigh* So many luscious guys to ogle, so little time. Thank you to all my Facebook friends who provide such wonderful images on a daily basis.

 

 

 

5. Cupcakes are one of my favorite foods. For my Chocolate Cupcakes of Doom recipe – click here. I also enjoy watching Cupcake Wars. Until my younger son starts critiquing my cupcakes like Florian – “zee’s cupcake, eet’s very dense.”

Casey’s Chocolate Cupcakes of Doom!

6.  I love Old Sturbridge Village. If you have a living history museum in your area, please visit it. And visit often. There is always something new to learn.

7. I love intelligent guys. Smart is the new sexy! If you haven’t checked out Sherlock Holmes on Masterpiece Theater (or BBC), what are you waiting for?

The Versatile Blogger Award goes to:

YA Beyond – sound advice from my fellow Scribe PJ Sharon for teenagers and us adults who live with them.

Julia Rachel Barrett– I know, I just pegged you for another blog award. But it did say to choose excellent blogs, so there you are.

Penny Romance – Ditto for what I said about Julia. I visit you lovely ladies every day! Even if I don’t comment, be assured that I read your posts.

Shelly Bell – Always interesting interviews and reviews.

Rose Vanden Eynden – my kindred Soul Mate sister – enlightenment, wisdom and slices of life.

A.C. Cockerill – I learn something new every time Ashley posts a  blog.

Savannah Chase – Yummy photos, flash fiction and so much more!

Tam Linsey – Always educational and pertinent. Plus, Tam has the best website artwork!

Ann Montclair – loads of author interviews!

J.D. Revezzo – Dreaming in Ink – everything for the reader and author – reviews, interviews, advice!

Nights of Passion – my fellow CTRWAers. Lots of fun for both readers and writers.

Callie Hutton – Magic Monday! Don’t miss it!

Jamie Brazil – part of the beard lover’s club, never a boring blog post!

Meggan Connors – I want to be her when I grow up! The saucy wench always makes me laugh.

Writing Secrets of 7 Scribes – Sassy, classy, and informative. Not that I’m biased. Much!

One Lucky Evening

Happy Friday! Don’t forget to stop by the Scribes. My guest today is USA Today bestselling author – Terry Spear!

A few announcements:

  • The winner of the Paranormal Freebies Giveaway is: Renee BennettThe winner of the The Romance Review’s Week 2 Q&A is crazycatlady. Congratulations you both won an e-book copy of Mystic Ink. I have e-mailed you the details.
  • Also, on March 20th, I’ll be having my first ever author chat over at The Romance Reviews. I hope you can stop by. But don’t worry, I’ll remind you again!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
This week, my fellow Scribe PJ Sharon released her third book – Savage Cinderella. I highly recommend it to all of you. I know, because this is the story that brought PJ, me and the Scribes together.

See, it happened like this.

J Monkeys, Susannah Hardy, and I were all part of a writer’s group at our local library. One June evening, PJ arrived looking for critique partners. After the meeting, Suze and I stayed behind to talk with PJ. After that we all became critique partners. PJ’s book was Savage Cinderella, mine was Ascension and Suze’s was Bonaparte Bay (click here for a short story from this wonderful universe).

PJ also enlightened us with the words RWA (Romance Writers of America). She is personally responsible for recruiting me, Suze, and J to CTRWA.  J met Jamie Pope (since they joined the same month) and PJ introduced us to Katy Lee.

Last year, J birthed the idea for a group blog and the 7 Scribes were born.  And, personally, I crossed the line between wannabe writer over to professional.

It has almost been a year since the Scribes started and two years since I met PJ, Suze, and J. I am so happy to have made such great friends and to know such wonderful writers.

So to PJ – Congratulations on your new release! I’m sure glad you decided to come to our writer’s meeting that June! I can’t imagine life without knowing you, Suze, J, Katy, and Jamie.

Spill it – tell me about your friends and the people who are traveling with you along the journey of life!

Blog Awards and 7 Fun Facts!

Happy Friday everyone! Please remember to visit me over at the Scribes today where Susan Muller discusses her new book – Secrets on Forest Bend!

This past week I was graced with two blog awards: “The Irresistibly Sweet Blog Award” and the “Inspiring Blogger Award”.

Thank you so much: Marilyn Wigglesworth (Sweet) and Carrie Daws (Inspiring).

Both awards only ask that I share seven interesting or random facts about me and that I pass this award to other deserving bloggers.

So here are my seven things, in no particular order:

1. I gave birth to my youngest son on the bathroom floor. And before you ask, I went into labor and gave birth in the space of about twenty minutes.  The kid couldn’t wait!

2. I went to college in Washington DC. While there, I earned bachelor’s degrees in Anthropology and Psychology. I figured, I should earn two BAs for the price of one.

3. While in DC, I was also an intern for two Smithsonian Museums (on separate occasions): The National Museum of American History and at The National Zoo. And yes, both places are as cool at they sound!

4. I’m a life long sci-fi/fantasy geek. I love Star Trek and Star Wars. Since I’ve attended two Trek conventions, if pressed to choose, I’d say I love Star Trek more.

5. I met my husband while working at a movie theater. I worked concessions and he was head projectionist. Yup, that was a cool job too.

6. I’m a proud member of Phi Mu Fraternity, Gamma Delta chapter. I even served as chapter president my senior year in college.

7. I taught myself to knit and crochet, during the dark time, while I avoided being a writer. I love to make socks, gloves, scarves and amigarumi. In between books, I fall back to my yarn stash for a bit.

In the spirit of the awards, I must bestow one of these prestigious honors on other worthy bloggers (10 for the Irresistibly Sweet Awards and 14 for the Inspiring Blogger Award).

To the recipients, please take a moment, thank the person who gave you the award, list seven fun/interesting things and pass this on to other deserving blogs.

My choices are as follows (please check them out!):

Irresistibly Sweet Award:

1. Julia Rachel Barrett

2. Joy Shaw

3. A. C. Cockerill

4. Gail Ingis

5. Tam Linsey

6.  Frankie Robertson

7.  Carrie Daws

8. Kinley Baker

9. Kerri Nelson

10. Lisa Kessler

Inspiring Blogger Award:

1. Jennifer Fusco -MOD Blog

2. Tim Greaton Forum

3. Mare’s Place

4. I’m in the Kitchen

5.  Jessica Aspen

6. Jimmie Chew

7. The Passive Voice

8.  John Sealander

9.  Mia Marlowe

10. Glenise Clelland

11. Savannah Foxx

12. Avery Flynn

13. Soul Mate Authors Group (a shout out to all my fabulous Soul Mate sisters!)

14. Writing Secrets of 7 Scribes (seriously – I couldn’t leave out my fantastic fellow Scribes)

What blogs have you read that have inspired you lately? What are your favorite sweet (or cute) blogs? And how about you? Share a fun fact or two!

Ever Been Rejected and Accepted in the Same Day?

Happy Friday everyone! Please be sure to visit the Scribes today. I have posted my recipe – Wyatt’s Whoopie Pies.

And if you still haven’t entered the Soul Mate Author’s December contest, what are you waiting for? The prize is a brand new Kindle! You can enter once per day!

As most of you know, I have two other completed novels, besides Mystic Ink:  Ascension and The Undead Space Initiative. I have been actively seeking publication for both books. And both were out to editors. Key word in that last sentence – were.

Now, I never thought in a million years that I would receive a rejection and an acceptance all in the same day.

The rejection – Ascension – which boiled down to scheduling, was disappointing. But, I was expecting it. (I always expect a no, but that’s how I protect myself from being crushed by rejection!). The editor was kind and encouraging.  I will try submitting that book elsewhere in the coming months.

Later, that same day, I received an offer for the book I wrote in a month as part of the Scribes double dog dare back in July.

Yeah – The Undead Space Initiative which I never, ever, thought would sell, that book received an offer!

I was so shocked, I asked my husband to read the e-mail to me. He looked at me like I was nuts, but obliged. After all, I had just been rejected, how is it possible that on the same day, I got an offer to buy USI?

I’m not complaining,  but merely pointing out the strange way the world works. I’m thrilled! Ecstatic to have made another sale!

You may have noticed, I haven’t named names. I won’t yet. Not until everything is finalized.

I only mention the offer now, because two weeks ago, I promised on the Scribes page to mention good news faster.

And a promise is a promise!!

Once it’s a done deal, I will share the details.

And now, I really have to start my next book! Evil plotting – here I come!

Ever have good news, but been afraid to divulge it right away? If you have any good news or any news, feel free to share it!

Now the Fun Begins!

Happy Friday everyone.  Don’t forget to visit me at the Scribes today and say “hi” to our special guest – Frankie Robertson. She’s discussing her move to indie publishing and her new, traditionally published book – Veiled Mirror.

After a few weeks of waiting, I’ve received critique for The Undead Space Initiative. The overall reception has been positive. The book isn’t perfect (nothing ever is) and I have a bunch of questions, comments and “things that may need more explaining” to sift through.

To my beta readers and critique partners – thank you for taking time out of your busy schedules to read and comment on my book. The book will only be better because of you.

How should a writer deal with feedback? Gracefully is always a good place to start. Try not to stress about it or take it personally.

But, practically, you also can’t please everyone. Nor can you re-make the book is someone else’s image. Balance is necessary. Take what works for you and discard the rest. But don’t toss it completely away (more on this at the end of the post).

One of the hardest things I’ve had to learn is what should be changed or not changed based on critique. Monday’s Scribe – Jamie Pope- has done a great blog post on critique and I urge you to read it!

The two questions I always ask myself – Do I agree? Will the change make the book better?

Notice, I didn’t ask, “Do I like it?” It doesn’t matter if I like the feedback or not. It doesn’t matter whether I want to hear that I might need to change something.  If I agree, I suck it up, start evaluating, and make the changes.

Also, notice I said,  “If I agree.”

And I always try to apply the unused, technique-related feedback to my next novel. That way I can grow and improve as a writer.

Besides, I’m still the Author Goddess. And what I say goes.

Evil Plotting

Yay! Another Friday. Don’t forget to check out my post over at the Scribes – I’m late, I’m late…for what exactly? and meet the Naggy Bunny.

Another week has come and gone. And I’m sad to say, not much plotting has happened for Devil’s Advocate.

I spent most of the week helping my fellow writers. I’ve been honored to read their works in progress and provide my feedback. I’ve read some sci-fi, paranormal romance, middle grade adventure and contemporary. I have such talented friends!!

I’ve received feedback on The Undead Space Initiative. So far, no one has told me the story is bad. I’ve gotten mostly high marks, which is always nice. Still, I’m not resting on my laurels. There will be edits. I’m not sure what form they will take yet.

I’ve been mostly reflective this week. Thinking about my new characters. What do they want? How will they achieve their goals?What happens next (my favorite question to answer).  Not all that different from talking to my sons (what do you want to do with your life?).

Just thinking about the word “plotting” brings to mind a different word – scheming. When you think about it, as a writer, you really are contriving an entire story out of thin air – creating a whole new world that didn’t previously exist. Totally cool and frightening at the same time. And once the story is published, then that world is shared with your readers. They bring their own expectations and realities. Your world isn’t only in your head anymore.

It’s a big responsibility, which is why I spend more time on plotting, character creation, etc. than I do writing. I’ve learned the hard way that planning ahead works best for me. In a few weeks NaNo WriMo will begin and I plan to be prepared (like a good Boy Scout mother).

It’s hard to believe Fall is almost here. I’ll leave you with a photograph I took last October at Old Sturbridge Village in Massachusetts. If you live in the area and you’ve never been – plan a trip. Right now.

Here comes Autumn

And Now I Wait.

Happy Friday everyone. Please visit the 7 Scribes and read my Friday post – To Sequel or not to Sequel.

As reported last week, the book is gone. Off in the hands of my critique partners and beta readers.

Gone. . .

So now what?

Do I sit around twiddling my thumbs? No way. In the down time between feedback and the next round of revisions, I’m plotting my next book- Devil’s Advocate.  Another attempt at writing an actual Urban Fantasy. Lately, with the last two books,  both plots twisted into paranormal romance. We’ll see how the next book plots out.

How about having some fun? I recently crocheted a candy dot scarf for a friend. And I read Julia Rachel Barrett’s Incorporeal (excellent ghost story!).

But, I’m not even close to being done with The Undead Space Initiative. I still have to revise the first draft synopsis into something market ready.  So in the meantime, a tease.

The opening paragraphs of The Undead Space Initiative.

***********

Life sucks then you die. It’s a universal truth. But here’s what’s scarier. Even in death, life can still suck.

Case in point … wait for it…

 “Cherry! Get your skinny ass up on stage!” Jonathan barked through my dressing room door.  How do I describe him? Pain in my rump. Benefactor. Reason for my current situation. None of them seem adequate enough. His main occupation? Yelling at me to perform and to make him money. And he’s always interrupting. Never lets a girl even have a moment to think.

“I’m on my way. Geez Louise.” I flung open the door, narrowly missing Jonathan’s long Roman nose. The tops of his fangs peeked out from his full lips as he smiled at me. This was a game we liked to play. I would try to smack him with the door whenever possible.

Okay, it was a game I liked to play. I’ve never managed to nail him in the face. My vampire Sire is too damn fast.

Jonathan tsked and crooked his finger. A slow smile curled his lips. “Cherry, I don’t know why I put up with you.”

“Of course you do. I’m you’re number one performer.” I flashed fang. My pearly whites are nowhere near as long as his, but they can still do the job. Due to feed soon, I tried not to stare at Jonathan’s jugular. I hated needing my Sire’s blood to stay strong and avoid overpowering hunger. The kind, if left untended long enough, made vamps go feral. I buried my nose in a bouquet of fragrant red roses, a gift from one of my many fans.

Jonathan smirked. Damn. I hated when he caught me eyeing him like a roast. Another game we liked to play – I pretended I didn’t need him. And he pretended not to notice. We both knew otherwise.

I needed him.

Crap on toast.

The Revision Blues

Greetings and TGIF. Please remember to visit me at Seven Scribes for my Friday post. This week – book vs. the movie version.

So draft one of The Undead Space Initiative is done. Yay me!  Now on to the hard part. Draft clean up.

Right now, I’m still in the first chapter.

Why? (Especially after almost 12,000 words a week for a month. At that rate, I should be halfway done with revisions.)

Because I let myself get bogged down in doubt (the crappy monster is at it again). I thought I was writing more of an urban fantasy with strong romantic elements.

But then, I decided to play “what if”. What if I moved the meeting of the heroine and hero up to the beginning of Chapter One – so it’s more like a romance?

A little slicing and some dicing later and now I have two versions of chapter one. Eek!

After a few slaps to the head and a week later, I’ve realized what I’m doing. Avoiding revisions. I don’t need to obesses over the first chapter. I can deal with that later. Geesh.

So moral of the story – don’t play “what if” during rough draft clean up. Save that for later, when you’ve given the book to your first readers. Then torment yourself!