Archive for July, 2008

CONFESSIONS OF A ROMANCE WRITER FROM NATIONAL’S: part 1 of part 2


I confessed twice yesterday that should tell you something.

1. I’m not a thief or anything, but I’m trying to figure out a way to stuff the down comforter on my bed into my luggage. That thing is wonderful. Since I don’t steal I’m going to buy one.

2. This hotel tries to charge you for breathing. It’s really starting to get irritating.

3. Oh, this morning I needed Tylenol and coffee in that order. If I tell you why I’d have to kill ya.

4. Okay, I’ll confess I met up with some Divas last night and had a kicking Margarita. Those things are going to make me an alcoholic.

5. I know I’m going to need it again tomorrow because not only am I meeting up with 70 something Divas, but I’m meeting some fan-tab Cherries.

6. I plan to have Pam, my bestest bud, paged to the front desk if I don’t see her by tomorrow. *shh, don’t tell her. I want it to be a surprise.*

7. That’s all I’ve got for you. I’ll be back with juicy stuff. Trust me.

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July 31, 2008 at 5:50 pm 5 comments

SINCE IT’S REALLY NOT A CONFESSIONS

Here are some photos from the Literacy Signing. Here are the names in order of the pictures shown. I’m sorry if some of the spelling is wrong.
Diane Holquist
Alyssa Holliday
Elizabeth Hoyt*love her books*
Christina Dodd
Jill, The First Cherry
Jayne Ann Krentz
Susan Elizabeth Phillips
Anne Stuart*I’ll probably start her book tonight. She’s that good.*
Nora Roberts
Michelle Willangham *I know I’m spelling her last name wrong, but if you love historicals she is FAN-TAB.
Jayne Ann Krentz










July 31, 2008 at 3:17 am 3 comments

CONFESSIONS OF A ROMANCE WRITER FROM NATIONAL’S: part 1 of part 1

It has been 24 hours since I last confessed….

1. No matter the time in the morning I must look fabulous. And if that means slapping on sunglasses to hide the fact the bags under my eyes may be heavier than the 50 pound limit on Amtrak…then that’s what I do.

2.Because when it comes to being a writer Discipline is next getting and staying Published I wrote during the entire five hour trip.

3. Of course since I’m cultured and well traveled I didn’t start snapping pictures like a tourist at the first sight of San Francisco. I took note of it, but it’s not like I went wild or anything. Okay, maybe a little


4. But I did not jump on this. I’m a grown up. *snort*

5. My last confession. I will be making a voodoo of the guy who checked me in. He charged me $200 more than he was supposed. I spent two hours trying to get that mess fixed. You suck. You will be stuck with pens. And I will tell all my writer friends. Let’s see who ends up dead in a romantic suspense.

That is all. Must go to the bar.

July 30, 2008 at 9:13 pm 2 comments

CONFESSIONS OF A ROMANCE AUTHOR AT NATIONAL’S: The prelude

*I’ve decided to do my tales of conference in confessional style.*

It has been such a very, very long time since I last confessed…..

1. My mother is ready to shoot me to put herself out of her misery. What she doesn’t know is that my level of excitement is only going to get worse.

2. Related to number 1: I know it wrong to wake someone up at 6:50 a.m. in the morning just to say,” This time tomorrow I’ll be on the train. Squee!!!”

3. It’s even worse to call that same person at 11:30 to say, “This time tomorrow I’ll be in San Francisco.”

4. 30 minutes later,” I’ll be in my hotel room.”

5. 30 minutes later,” I’ll be registered for the conference. Ooooh, I wonder what books they’ll put in the bag this year.”

6. 30 minutes later leaving a message on the person’s phone. (Yes, they have stopped answering the phone. I have no idea why.) “I’ll be drinking in the bar.”

7. In between these moments of pure excitement are moments of panic for many, many reasons. *Pam* My hair is sooo not done. At the moment I look like Buckwheat. I need to wash the rest of the clothes I’m going to wear. I need to double check that I’ve got everything. And really I’m going to conference and am aware I’m liable to put my foot in my mouth. Or get stuck with the Bitter Author. I did last year and saw no one to help me escape.

But I digress.

8. Uh, just a word of advice don’t take a class in summer school if you plan to go to conference. I have to take a final today. Which would normally not put me in a dither. Either you know it or you don’t by this time. But because of my little near death experience I missed a lot of class. So…there is a lot I don’t know. Cue panic button.

9. Okay, this is my last confession and I might as well admit something so…well…here it is: When I get home and the day is over I’m going to unpack just to repack so that I can feel the excitement of “I’m going to National’s” again. I’m sick I know, but I’m still doing it.

You can confess in the comments. Just do a few hail mary’s and you’re forgiven.

July 29, 2008 at 1:55 pm 16 comments

WRITING FOREPLAY

Sounds kinky, but it isn’t. I have my first real writer life deadline. Everything before this was self-imposed. Now I’ve got someone on the other end waiting for me to produce some words. Unfortunately it’s not on the WIP I’m working through now. So fortunately that means I’m pushing myself to finish this one to get to the other story.

Clear as mud?

So, the goal is to finish a very rough draft of Diary of a Food Addict (yup, that’s the new title. The other one was crap and I knew it, but didn’t know what else to call it. I digress.) at the very end of August, early September. Right now I’m not even thinking of a final word count. I’m just getting the story down, because it’s important that I finish this story.

Now why am I calling this post Writing Foreplay?

Because I’m working out the details in the story due in December. It’ll be a novella. I do need to be aware how many words I need to have. (27k-30k.)I want it to be cooking in the back of my head. So, I’ve sat down and picked names for the hero and heroine. I’ve worked out half of the plot. I know what the hero will be doing, but not quite sure how to make the heroine’s part of the plot tangible. Right now it’s “She wants to have a real vacation.” Not tangible. Maybe if I have her doing stuff, but how many things can you do on vacation?

Ha and that’s where the foreplay begins, because I’ve now learned I can’t seal the deal until all the plot points fall into place. Which also means I need to find out more about these characters. So, I’ve got a composition book and I’ll be writing out backstory. Writing pieces of dialogue that come to me, because for me that’s a huge one. I have to hear the character’s voice in my head.

Complete sidenote: My son woke up and went straight for Grandma. He lifted the cover and poked his head under it until he saw her face and said, “Good Morning!!!” It was 6:30 a.m. I laughed then said, “Welcome to my world.” Can’t wait for National’s where I’ll be able to sleep in.

July 28, 2008 at 1:30 pm 4 comments

UPDATES: New National’s To Do List

On my prior list I had:

2. Clean Out Books
3. Buy Shoes
4. Buy New Clothes
5. Order Things to Go into the Goody Room
6. Get Some Hair to Wear
7. Do a deep house clean
8. Buy Batteries for Camera
9. Bug Amtrak for Ticket

Now I’ve had almost two weeks to do all this stuff. It should all be done, right?

WRONG!

We are talking about me here. The ultimate procrastinator. I could teach on class on the one million ways you can NOT do the things you need to do. I have done 3, 4, and 7. But you know you can always buy more clothes and shoes. That’s what I plan to do.

Number 2 won’t get done any time soon. 8 and 9 will be done by tomorrow. 5 isn’t looking so hot at the moment.

Now I need to add stuff to this list:

1. Pedicure.

My feet don’t look like Flintstone feet anymore. (I’ve been scrubbing and wearing socks.) But you know I’ve had this flower painted on my toes for a very, very long time. I’m too embarrassed to say how long, but trust me it’s been a very, very long time.

1a. Get my eyebrows waxed. I looked in the mirror the other day. I’m on the verge of having a onezie.

2. Buy Pajamas for the Eharlequin Pajama Party.

I went last year and had a blast. Why break tradition.

3. Finish packing.

I’ve actually gotten a pretty good start on this. My Rita/GH dress and shoes are packed. Shirts and some pants. I need to wash everything else, because it was just too cute to wait and wear to National’s.

4. Buy some books for the train ride.

I hate traveling. I don’t care if it’s only an hour drive, but if I weren’t the driver I’d be asking “ARE WE THERE YET?!!!!!!!”

5. For the same reason above I need to buy a shiny new notebook and some pens.

God, I love Office Maxx, but I’ll restrain myself this time. I’m on a budget.

6. Scream occasionally “I’M GOING TO NATIONAL’S!!!!!” because my goodness “I’M GOING TO NATIONAL’S!!!!”

5 days and I’m sooooo there.

If you were wondering: I hit 14k this morning in the WIP. YAY!!!

July 25, 2008 at 1:11 pm 8 comments

LEARNING TO WRITE OPENINGS BY WATCHING MOVIES

One of my favorite romantic comedy’s is How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days. It’s brillant on so many levels, but this time when I watched I came at with a writer’s eye. I just finished judging contest entries. Out of the five I read, two started in the right place. One writer had minimal backstory and infodump. I love him/her for it. But as the opening scenes of How To opened I realized this movie did the same thing.

Yes, the little magazines float by and you see snippets of her acting out the research for her articles. Yet in the first ten minutes you know the goal, the motivation, and the conflict on the horizon.

Now I’m not saying being succint is best for every story. Some need to start slow. Like Gods in Alabama by Joshilyn Jackson. With the writer’s eye I can tell you the NOW story doesn’t start until the very bottom of page two. But up until that point she’s building you up for the rest of story. The tone. The underlining conflict. Heck, characterization and understanding how the character ticks. For the life of me I can’t see how she could have grabbed me with “Burt had his feet propped up on my battered coffee table….” VS. “There are Gods in Alabama…” *Now if you haven’t read this book please do. It’s a book that I wish deep down in my writer’s bones that I wrote. That some good writing. Also, it shut the writer in me up. Again, that’s some good writing.*

Now what am I really saying?

Don’t think your job is done once you’ve written a fabulous hook. Make me stay around for the story. You know how you can do that? By not boring me to death with backstory or infodump. Please I’m asking you as a reader. Just don’t.

Am I guilty of this?

Of course, but I’m not reformed. I’ll just bore you with backstory later. Just not in the first chapter. I promise.

July 24, 2008 at 4:11 am 4 comments

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