149. Putting yourself out there

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Last night, Kelly had an entry on risk taking and writer's. Every day we put ourselves out there for the world to see. Writing in our blogs, sending out stories for submissions, sending out stories to critique groups is us taking a leap of faith and taking a risk. just yesterday, I sent out my latest completed story to my new critique group. I'd been wanting to submit there the last few days, but I kept stopping myself. The group was new, and since I write mostly m/m romance and erotica, I wondered how the response would be. honestly, I was nervous as hell, but I did it. I took the risk because I knew I wanted some other opinions on it before I submitted it out.

Well, I submitted it yesterday, and this afternoon two of my new critique group had read it. The response was good and they did give me some good situations on the story. Since, I'm still unpublished as a fiction writer, I still get nervous about putting my fiction out there. It's the whole "does it suck" phobia. I'm still working on that. I guess that's why I hadn't submitted much fiction in the past. I focus mostly on my nonfiction. It has sold for me. So I'm getting better at taking risks, but it is still something that I know I need to work. If you want to make it out there in the writing business, you need to put yourself out there each and everyday. Not every one will like what you have to say or what you write, but some will. Those are the ones you end up writing for.

Last night, I wrote my review for last night's episode of the Real World, and tonight I need to watch and recap So you think you can dance, but I'm taking a mini break from writing. Or I have been. I accepted the fact yesterday that my brain needed a mini-break. It is the end of the month, and I have written over 25,000 words this month. This is not counting my blog or my personal journal entries. This is articles and fiction. I'm not sure the last time I wrote that much in one month. I began the month with a goal of 10,000 fiction words in my mind, and I passed that just in the last couple of days. Last week, when I saw how close I was to 25,000 words, I made it my goal to surpass that, and I just did that with my review last night of the Real World. I'm quite proud I made some goals, and I stuck to it and succeeded. I didn't think I would. I'm getting there.

Have a great day everyone!

148. End of the month slump?

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

I've hit a bit of a slump the last day or two. The words aren't coming as easily as they were before I got sick last week. I did write so much this month, maybe my mind is telling me I needed a break. Either that or my mind is elsewhere. As much as I try not to watch the continuing coverage of Katrina, I keep finding my attention going back to my television, watching the news. My heart breaks seeing the coverage and hearing the stories of people that are now fighting for their lives. Yes, you have to wonder if they made the right decision staying in the area. However, what's done is done. You can't play what if ...

At least not in this case. Playing what if is what we do as writer's. What if this character said this or did that? However, when it comes to real life what if doesn't help. Yes, I know we all do it. I've playing the what if game myself with something personal the last day or two, but I know I can't do that because it just makes me worry if I made the right decision or not. If I didn't, then what will be will be.

Today I put out my latest completed short for critique over at my new critique group. Submitting something, even for critique, is not easy for me. I always wonder about it until someone reads and gets back to me. Does it suck? Once it goes through critique I plan to submit it. Have the market in mine. I just want some more eyes to read it before I send it out. I don't know if I'll get any writing done today. My mind is so not even focused right now, and it hasn't been the last couple of days. Maybe that will change tonight. I guess I will have to wait and see.

Have a great day everyone.

147. Eye opening

Monday, August 29, 2005

Yesterday, I talked about watching the news coverage of Katrina. I continued to watch, and I continued to worry. My one friend in Baton Rouge said there was no need for me to worry because she'd be okay. however, that wasn't the only reason for my worry. A whole segment of the country was under the gun with this storm so to speak. The gun just needed to find its aim, and for the longest time that aim looked to be directed towards New Orleans. If it hit directly on that city, the city might have ended up underwater, and there is no telling if the city would have ever been the same. Even with the storm hitting a bit to the east instead of hitting on New Orleans, the storm has still caused catastrophic damage. Highways are under water, and when you look at it? I mean really look at it, there are people that will be without power for days, people that have lost everything they own and some have even lost their lives ...

It makes you open your own eyes. That problem you have with this or that doesn't mean all that much because their is someone somewhere else that just lost it all. I know the thought is a bit of a downer, but it is reality. When something happens in the world around you it open your own eyes. It makes you grateful for what you do have because somewhere out there someone else would want that very thing you're complaining or whining about. The storm has weakened to a category one, but that doesn't mean the storm is done. There is a tornado threat and flooding is still in process. Storms aren't only happening here in the US, but India is dealing with monsoons. I hope all those effected by this storm are well. I know of a few bloggers in the nearer blogoshpere that are in the areas affected, and I hope we hear from them soon. Even if I don't know them personally, I know there are people out there that are concerned, and I hope they are able to check in quite soon.

With my mind being so focused on the storm, I barely watched the VMA's. I still can't believe they aired as scheduled, but I did turn them on. The show wasn't very entertaining. I enjoyed Shakira's performance and seeing MC Hammer after all these years was good, but that's about it! I'm not even sure about the water stunt Kelly Clarkson did. i didn't get much writing done last night. I did type up what I wrote the night before, and I wrote a page last night that needs typed in. I think I found a place to submit the story I finished last week, and now I need to get over my submission anxiety and actually submit it!

Have a great day everyone.

146. Watching Katrina

Sunday, August 28, 2005

I'm nowhere near the gulf coast. I'm here safe in my home in Arizona, but I know a lot of people are in the area in the path of the storm. I've been watching the coverage since I heard Hurricane Katrina had hit a Category 5. I told a friend this, and he asked me what the heck did that mean? Basically it means the storm is as bad as it could get, and it looks to be hitting those in Mississippi and Louisiana quite hard. My best friend is in Louisiana, a bit west of the affected area, but still in the state. I have another friend, I believe in Baton Rouge. I know Charlotte is also in the area. Just taking a quick look at posts across the blogosphere, several others are in the area and dealing with evacuations. I stood up til 6:30am watching news coverage, and then I fell asleep and woke up a little after one to only turn on the coverage again.

One small irk that I've had with all this coverage? I know I saw this mentioned this morning. Not yet today, and I'm surely hoping I don't. However, tonight in Miami is the MTV Video Music Awards. Miami was hit a few days ago when the storm was only a category one. A small storm compared to what is now going to be hitting within some hours. However, we've been assured that the awards will go on! Okay, this is what gets me. I understand keeping the status quo and going forward the show, but there are people in Florida dealing with the after effects of this storm. We have people in Mississippi and Louisiana that are about to get hit by this huge storm. Those covering the storm are worried about "large loss of life." However, we can all be assured that the VMA's will air. I know my attention is not on the fact that the VMA's are about to air. My attention is focused on the news and those in the area that are about to be affected. Am I the only one that sees how wrong this is? Or am I just overreacting. Yes, I have wondered if I'm doing just that. My prayers and thoughts are with all those in the affected areas.

In personal news, I did get some writing done last night. I wrote two pages by hand, and I'll try typing those in here in a bit. Last night, I did watch The Grudge, and I've always heard from people about how scary the movie was, and it didn't scare me at all in the least bit. In fact, I felt myself laughing in some parts just because it was so not even scary. Anyone else seen this movie?

I'm going to watch more coverage now. Be safe and have a great day everyone.

145. On the mend

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Thanks to those that left me get well wishes. I think I'm knocking out whatever bug I had. I'm still not sure what I had. I just know that I was feverish and exhausted. My mind didn't want to function at all. It's getting back into shape though. I started reading one of my books for review last night even. Good story so far. I'll probably pick up where I left tonight at some point. The Grudge is on HBO, and I have plans to watch that as well. I just looked at my spreadsheet in which I chart my word count progress and the last two days had nothing but big fat zeros. Even though I was sick I feel guilty about that. i had a reason for those zeros though.

The other day I wrote about setting goals and me staring down 30 in the face. Thanks for everyone that did comment that entry. I've had a lot of time to think about that entry since I wrote it. Kacey commented that it was important that I was happy with my life. Honestly? I am. I know I'm exactly where I want to be right now, but I'm working towards getting there. I'm doing something I love, and I am working seriously towards achieving some kind of success with my writing. I'm pursuing it like it is a career now.

I have some amazing people in my corner, cheering me on. It always seems to end up being the same ones too. People may come and go, but there is a comfort in knowing you have some people that you know will always be there. No, nothing is forever. Friendships can and do change, but sometimes there are people in your life that go past the everyday normal friends. They almost become family, and I've always believed with family, you always love no matter what. Family is unconditional love. Even if they make mistakes you still love them. Even if for some reason or another you never talked to them again, if you picked up that phone in the middle of the night, and they needed you? You would still be there for them. That is just what family does.

Life is just this crazy thing. every day something changes. You learn something new every day. No matter how old you are. Al thats in your life is are you happy with where you are and how your life is? If you're not happy, then you need to change something. Because above all else, you need to be happy. So the question is ... are you happy with your life?

144. A little something different

Friday, August 26, 2005

I'm still sick. Getting better though, but I had a fever most of the day yesterday, and you know how it is when you have a temp you just feel like crawling under the covers to sleep. I'm still tired today, but not feeling as bad.

Couple of quick links though.

My latest book review for Erotic Romance Reviews for Women went up today, so check my review out for Latigo, a novel released by Torquere Press.

Also, my entry isn't all here today. Well, this is here, but I decided to hop on over to another blog in this grand big blogosphere. Scott over at Scott-o-Rama has opened up his blog for a free for all Friday! Anyone can post, and my post just went up a few moments ago. I talk a bit about the movie Top Gun, Tom Cruise, and I ask the question: Do you have a movie that is your favorite but the actor or actress in it just doesn't do it for you anymore? So if you want to hop over there and leave your two cents, I'll keep my eye on comments!

Back to my regularly scheduled blogging tomorrow. I hope anyway! See how this bug I've got goes. This just sounded fun, and my mind sort of worked for me, so I decided to join in. Have a great day everyone!

143. The state between sick and not sick

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Since a couple of nights ago, I haven't felt at my best. I'm not totally sick, but I'm not at 100% either. I just feel completely and totally exhausted, and my throat hurts. Stomach had been off since the weekend, but I think that might be a separate issue. I just hate it because my mind isn't clicking as fast as it normally does, and I'm not able to write as much because I feel so very tired. I didn't write much last night. My WIP's didn't get pulled out, but I did write my recap of last night's episode of So you think you can dance, which you can find here.

I updated my sidebar again. This time adding the books I'm reading for review at the moment. Both are e-books and currently released. My reviews should be up in a few weeks. I just need to actually read the books! Which I'll do once I can sit here and not want to fall asleep. I think I'm off to lay down for a bit. I think this might be my shortest blog entry ever. I might be back later, but for now ... have a great day everyone.

142. The pain of technology and setting goals

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Just spent an hour going through features over at Writers Write, since I was made one of the admins today, and the software is making me go bug eyed! I'm fairly technical minded, so I'm hoping to figure it out in time, but right now I'd like find the nearest wall and bang my head against it! Hah. Didn't get much writing done last night. Some, but not as much as I liked. I was feeling restless and my mind was filling with all these thoughts.

Somewhere around midnight, it hit me that in under six months, I'll be thirty. The big 3-0. Since when did that happen? I don't feel like a woman knocking on thirty's door. Some say I act like a woman of 20. I've made some changes in my behavior the last year. Gained some maturity and taken some responsibility, but I'm still the same person I've always been pretty much. Many of my online friends that I talk to are years younger than me. I don't see as a number that controls who my friends are. Never have.

For a woman my age, one would think I'd be married, children possibly, in a home of my own, but I don't have any of things I'm 29, and I live with my father and my brother, both who I love dearly. We have two rugrats of the feline variety. I don't have a set income either. Another thing most people my age have. My income depends on my writing. All these thoughts led me to what I want to accomplish in th future because let's face I'm not getting any younger.

So in my mind I started setting some goals. By the end of the of 2006, I want to be in print, whether it be an e-book or in a print book. i want to see my name on the cover of a story. I'd say 2005, but that is just a few months from now. Nonfiction wise, I want to find something that is more established and paying. Another column or several columns. Five years from now, I want to have sold to NY. I may start with e-books, but that isn't where I want to stay.

When I hear the good news of others selling, it makes me feel it is possible for me to do so as well. Just in the last two days, Beth has posted about her own successes. She's signed on to write five more books in the next two years. Not one, but five. That's just amazing, and it shows you that those that work at it do fine success. You just have to keep pushing at it.

I have this sneaking suspicion that I'm getting sick. I really hope not, but I didn't feel all that great last night, and today I have a sore throat. I really really hope I'm not. Check my sidebar for my recap and review of last night's episode of Real World: Austin. Have a great day everyone.

141. I can feel my spirit rising ...

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

I'm still obsessed with this song from the Queer as Folk finale. It's one of those great mood uplifting songs. I uploaded the song here, and I posted the link in a past entry. The past few days my mood hasn't been the best. I saw things changing, and it unsettled me because the changes that were happening didn't need to happen. If some would have had found in themselves to have just a bit of patience, things would have been settled and fixed a week or two ago. I can't keep thinking about it. All I can do is move forward with my life. Just amazes you when you take a break to focus on you and your life, your goals, how some just don't see that is all your doing, and make it about them, and how you no longer want to be their friend. Especially when that wasn't the case at all. I have a lot of good and positive things in my life, and those are the things I will make my focus on. Thank you to everyone that commented my post yesterday!

Am I the only person that can spend forever in a stationaery or a book store? Today, I went to a dollar store (you never realize how many great deals you can find these places!). I ended up spending way too much time in the stationery aisle, picking out pens and pencils to use, because I'm trying to write rough drafts some by hand. i did write some of my untitled WIP last night. I really wasn't in the mood to write, but I pushed onward and did it. Even if it was only 300 words, it is 300 words I didn't have the night before. I've always heard a true writer is one that will write even when they don't feel like it. I also wrote another little short Queer as Folk based fic last night, and that is over on my fiction blog if you wanted to check it out.

Speaking of my fiction blog, I went searching over the weekend to find places to list it, so I would get a bit more traffic there. Since there is erotic content, it took a bit of looking, but I found a few places. I went last night to check if my site was listed, and I was really amused. My fiction blog was listed the same day as sites talking about strap-ons and cell phone sex. And one of the sites sends feeds to another site, so when I updated last night one of the sites that listed the update was something called justwantfuck.com ....0.o! I'm telling you I never laughed so hard as when I saw that! It is getting me hits though. 60 hits the last two days, so ... haha! I can't even type about it without laughing.

I'll just end this here. Have an amazing day everyone. I know I aim too.

140. The Space Between

Monday, August 22, 2005

I woke up with the worst headache. Actually, no I didn't wake up with it. It came on shortly after I woke up. You know the type of headache that just slams into you out of nowhere? That type of headache. this weekend wasn't productive writing wise, but my weekend's hardly ever are. I meant to write last night before heading off to bed but I got distracted by some things, and my mood suddenly diminished, so I just didn't feel very creative. I've done quite well this month writing wise though, and I did send off something over to Romancing the Blog for their open blog night yesterday. I'll have to see how that goes. I also queried a fiction e-zine about submitting material to them. I spent yesterday looking for a market for my newly finished short, and I think I have a couple of options. I need to get back to work on my futuristic or my paranormal today.

I remember at the beginning of the month how I kept wondering how I would get everything done that I needed to get done. The Evolunacy fiction challenge, my own articles, and other things I knew needed to get done. In those early morning hours of the 1st, I joked with someone that I would see them in a month because I was that busy. The next morning when I woke up the idea started to appeal to me. I knew I had so many I talked to on a daily basis, and the more I talked to people the less I was able to get done. So I made some choices about who I would talk to for the period of the month. or at least until I felt secure enough in the fact that I would be able to get things done.

I have people I've met through the Internet. some years ago. Some recently, but it seems the ones that I keep finding myself going back to are the ones that have always been there. I have this one person. She is my best friend. She is honest and tells you what's what, even if she knows it is going to piss me off and maybe even hurt me to hear. I have others that I've known almost as long. We've spent hours talking by phone and instant messenger, and by all means these people have become people that aren't just Internet people to me. So I hold them close because no matter what I know they get it. My best friend and I were talking last night, and she told me you're only happiest when you're writing. See some people didn't get that, but she does. Others do.

I started seeing the light at the end of the tunnel last week at some point, and I thought things would just be fine. See I'm the type of person that sees it this way. You're the only one that can get things done for you. You're the only one that can write the words you write, and tell the stories you want to tell. Those words live on in your head.That goes for non-writing too. You're the one living your life, and no one can make you do things. You have to do them for yourself. You can't whine and complain and hope someone else does them for you. If you have a problem with someone you go to them. Sooner or later though, it starts sounding like a broken record, and you get tired of listening to it. So you want to jump the track and move on to the next one. Sometimes people just don't get it, and you thought just maybe they had. To only find out they had never understood at all.

Sometimes things change over the small things. Change is inevitable, but it opens up your eyes when things do change. Change sometimes needs to happen in order for you to move forward and succeed with your goals. Sometimes change hurts, but that is just a part of life.

Have a great day everyone.

139. Another Sunday arrives

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Wow. Where is this summer going? Here is Arizona, the kids are already back in classes. Some school districts starting as early as the 8th of August. This doesn't really effect me. Since I'm not a parent or work in the educational system now. A little tidbit you might not have caught on before. I'm not sure I've mentioned it in here, but its possible I have. My formal education was in education. I went to college to obtain a teaching certification and a degree in education. Well, I did get the degree, but the certification never exactly went through. In my last semester of my training, the powers that be decided I wasn't suitable for classroom teaching.

I think it was just one of those situation where one thing after another kept getting in the way. The final decision was either start my final semester over in the fall or graduate without my certification. this was told to me about a month before graduation, with the addition of you'd have to file this and that paper in order for that to even happen, and someone will have to approve you doing that. I threw my hands up in the air and told them to get me out of there. I was that frustrated. Sleepless nights, stress, headaches. All of it piling on me. Well, final word came down the weekend before graduation, which gave me no time to tell any of my family elsewhere to come out. The spring of 1998 was just a messy time.

There are times when i miss working with children, but I always stop myself from doing so. If someone tells you're not fit to work in a classroom with children, it sort of sticks the thought in your mind and you just don't try it again. They actually suggested I stick to writing and maybe try writing for the classroom. Which I did try, and I did have a book contract for a set of books on the states. Then the publisher went belly up. So I went from writing children's nonfiction to writing erotica and romance. Now isn't that a jump?

I didn't write much yesterday. In fact, I didn't write at all. not in any of my WIP's. I do have ideas for a couple of articles. I hear Romancing the Blog is open for submissions again, and I think I have an idea for something, so I might throw that together later on today. I plan to tackle one of my WIP's later, and maybe write this little fic I had an idea for fan fiction wise. I had no intentions of jumping back into fan fiction, but apparently my Queer as Folk fics are getting some attention. I posted one and it ended up translated to some foreign language it was liked so much. I think I've written three or four short fics now. The writers of Queer as Folk even mentioned "long live the fan fiction" in an email posted on one of their sites.

Last night, we rented Sin City on DVD. I hadn't seen the movie yet, but I'd been wanting to. I'm a huge fan of Jessica Alba, and the rest of the cast is amazing too. I truly enjoyed the movie. I liked how everyone was tied to that one place where Nancy worked or Nancy herself. However, they all had different stories to tell. All taking place in one city. I also liked how the beginning and the end tied things up in a nice bow. Good movie. I recommend it.

Have a great Sunday everyone.

138. Full Moon Madness

Saturday, August 20, 2005

mood:bouncy & productive
music:bon jovi - bounce

I'm such in an incredibly good mood today. Today was one of the mini-challenges over at Evolution. The challenge to set a goal and complete it between midnight last night and 11:59 tonight. The goals to pick from - 1,000, 5,000 and 10,000 words. I chose the lowest level because a 1,000 words for me is good on any day. so last night, I opened one of my WIP's and I started off. Hoped into the Evolution chat room, and by the end of the night I had met my goal of a 1,000 words and finished a story. This is the first story I've finished in months that is longer than 800 words or so.

The story is the one I just started a couple of weeks ago, in which I only had the finishing sex scene to write. I'd mentioned in here previously I hadn't been in the proper mood to write a hotter than hell sex scene. Am I the only one that needs to be in the proper mindset to write sex? Well, I guess I was last night cause I wrote it and finished the story off, titled For Hire on my word count listing on my sidebar. I've made a few corrections this morning, typos and the like. I need to finish that later, and possibly get someone else to look at it, before I start looking for a place for it. I'm running through all the places in my mind that would take a 3,000 word M/M erotic piece. Any suggestions feel free to throw them at me!

Last night, while I was putting on the finishing touches around 4am, my father came in and asked if I wanted to go out to eat breakfast. I sat there staring at him. Well, after some going back and forth, I decided to go out, even though I was tired. I put the two most beautiful words to every writer known to man - the end, and I changed out of my pajamas and headed out for a big breakfast at the local Denny's. In my mind, it was a reward for finishing the story.

Things just seem to be falling into place. All the changes I've made had a purpose now because I focused on what I needed to and I am getting it done. I'm writing more than ever before. I know I made some unpopular choices. I needed a month to focus on things, and now that I don't feel as pressured and under the gun with my own self-imposed goals, I actually feel like I can loosen up a little and have some fun. Things have changed though, and I know that. Change is one of those inevitable things in life.

Speaking of change, blogger has made some changes. A few new features have been added in the last week that might be of interest to bloggers here on blogspot. I mentioned the Blogger for Word program earlier this week, but two more features were added later on in the week to help block spammers. I wrote an article about those features here. I had originally turned on the new captchas feature that created a word verification tool for comments, but I turned it back off. I might turn it back on. Pondering it because those that are visually impaired can't see the image and then they can't comment. I don't want to block anyone from commenting. I do have my email listed first on the sidebar, but it might still be a hassle for those that visit this blog at some point.

I'm off to blog hop now everyone. Have a wonderful Saturday.

137. My first exposure to romance

Friday, August 19, 2005

Growing up, my mother used to be an avid soap opera watcher. She watched the ones on daytime televison, mostly on CBS, and she also watched the Spanish language soaps at night. I remember starting to watch them as a young child. Each and every day I would join my mother in front of the television while the stories of the people's lives played on screen. Each day brought forth new challenges, new problems, and on-going stories of love and romance. For years, some soaps have been running. Guiding Light has been playing for over fifty years. Watching these soaps became a daily part of my life, and they were my first exposure to the world of romance and story telling. Yes, they can be a bit over dramatic at times, and things are forever changing. One week, a woman can be with one guy and the next she can end up in the bed of someone else.

However, with soaps you also have the long standing power couples. The ones that are together for years, and even if they do end up breaking up, they somehow always find their way back to each other. the dail soap tells the story of their love throughout the years that pass. I still watch soaps from time to time. Not daily as I used to. time just isn't in the cards to watch a soap every single day. At one point, I was reading the daily recaps over at Soapdom, but it isn't as fun reading a brief synopsis than it is watching. I try to keep up with them as much as I can, and the soaps make it easy because they don't move at all that quick a pace, so you can check in once or twice a week. Earlier this week, I noticed Guiding Light was hyping up the wedding of one of those super power couples that have been together for years, fought obstacle after obstacle, but still hadn't officially tied the knot and found their own version of happily ever after. So this week, I turned on the soap and watched.

Soaps are still cheesy and over dramatic, but when it comes to romance they do know what they are doing. Unless they want things to be horrible, they can tell the story of a love just as well as a book does, and watching soaps exposed to the world of love and romance. It made me want to sit down at my computer or with a pad of paper and write so that I can create that own little version of happily ever after for some couple.

Last night, I wasn't able to get much done story wise. I did type in the pages I wrote the night before, but I didn't write anything new this morning before bed as I had been doing the last few nights. One of my writing partners came online and I spent the night working on an interactive story line, her and I have add going on eighteen months the beginning of next month. It wasn't related to anything I was writing, but i love the story line, and sometimes things that happen there have worked their way into my fiction as well. I'm off to blog hop, and I then I'm going to try to get some words down.

Have a great day everyone!

136. Moving right along

Thursday, August 18, 2005

So I'm really happy about the progress I'm making with the new story. I'm not sure if it'll make it in time for Shiver,s but for right now I'm just trying to push on forward and see if I can get it done in time. If I can, that would be wonderful, but I don't want to push it. I've tried a different process with this one. Each night I sit at my desk with my pad of paper open in front of me, and I write as the words come. If I glance away I come right back to it when the next line hits me.i do this for two to three hours, and I can usually get a couple of printed pages done. The next day, I take what I wrote out the night before and type it in, and usually what I end up with is more than the two pages I wrote. One day I wrote two by hand, and it turned out to three and a half typed pages. I wrote another two pages this morning before my brain quit on me, and I plan to type those in after I am done blog hopping this afternoon.

I think if I'm lucky, I'll hit the 3,000 word mark, and I just started on this story this week. Last week, I was feeling guilty for getting nothing done fiction wise, but this week I'm right back on schedule. there are a few plot points I'm still not sure about in the story, but I'm trying to work those out in my head right now. I'm even bouncing some ideas right now over at the Romance Divas Think Tank. Just had an interesting idea proposed that might work. I guess I'll see how things go. it seems I have a lot of little twists that go into my stories.

Last night was So you think you can dance. Two hours long, and it didn't drag at all for me. Thank God. The first two episodes were as fun as pulling teeth. I really enjoyed last night, and the dancers were all wonderful. I'm really curious to see who the American public will send packing next week. To read my full recap of last night's episode head on over to here.

I think I'm going off to blog hop now! I want to get to typing in what I wrote last night. Have a wonderful day and evening everyone.

135. Some more writing revelations and other rambles

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Thanks to everyone that commented on the new look. Changing the backdrop was one of the easiest parts HTML wise. The tweaking of the sidebar is what took the longest. I think it looks less cluttered. I might add back some quotes to the sidebar later, but for now I'm fairly set blog wise. After I finished, I did go off to write some, but I didn't get as much done as I wanted to. I'll type it up later. My mind was getting tired, so I quit and laid down to read. The other day I started reading Seeing Red by Jill Shalvis. I'm about fifty pages in right now, and I'm enjoying the story so far. I can't wait to get more into it. I really like the heroine so far, and the male seems to have a lot to him as well.

I have a quick kitten story. JJ is about 6 months now, and he is as hyper as ever. Since my hours are so off for him, he's wide awake when I'm dead to the world asleep. Well, yesterday morning around 8am I was woke up with a loud crash. I sat up and quickly looked around, finding my lamp on the floor. He had ripped the lamp shade right off and the lamp lay on the floor in two pieces. The actually lamp itself didn't break, but the lamp shade was a goner. Apparently, the lamp also blew the bulb when it crashed, and that was probably the loud sound I heard. I put the lamp away and went back to bed. Later on in the day, I was working on things, and I needed to print out something. I go to turn on the printer, nothing. No light. No sound.

I thought somehow when the lamp blew the bulb it had somehow also blew the printer right out. If that had been the case, you might have noticed a "Kitten for sale" post in my blog. I'd already had to buy new speakers, and a main factor in going wireless for my keyboard and mouse was because JJ likes to play with wires a bit too much, and my mouse or keyboard was always being pulled when I was trying to work. I calmly try to look for the problem. Calmly when you have a hundred dollar piece of machinery possibly dead, that is. After a few minutes, I discover the plug that goes into the adapter that goes into the back of the printer had been pulled out. I looked at it, and it didn't look like the work of the kitten because he leaves evidence. So I look at the older cat and just shake my head. Some time last week, the older cat had also figured out how to pull the keyboard plug that goes into the back of the computer as well. A family member caught him in the act when I was in the shower. He's supposed to be a positive influence! Sigh! They are lucky I love them.

In my post yesterday, I discussed a recent revelation I had about my own writing. I had another one as well that I had forgotten to mention, and it goes along with something I saw in Kelly's blog today. The last couple of days she has been talking about character development. Interesting thoughts there, so you might want to go check them out. Today she talked about internal conflict and back story. In my own writing, I've noticed I go very heavy on the internal conflict. Some that have read say I'm actually in the character's head too much, and its boring to read. Others have said that they like a lot of internal conflict. So where is the balance? Is there room for a lot of internal thoughts and conflict or do the reader's want the basics. I've seen stories that are bare boned with descriptions and dialogue that work, and I've seen others that more thoughts in the heads of the characters is there. I guess it might be a personal preference. How much internal conflict is too much? How do you find that balance? Thoughts?

One last quick thing before I go, my recap of last night's Real World episode is up here. Good episode. I enjoyed it. Tonight is So you think you can dance. I believe it is on for 2 hours tonight. I hope it doesn't turn into a snooze fest because last time the show went for two hours, it just dragged the second hour for me. More premiere dates for some of my favorite shows have been set. The O.C. is set for September 8th. I happen to love this show a great deal, although I still think I shouldn't because it is set mostly for teens, and I'm far removed from my teen years. I can't wait for the season to start. One of my favorite actresses, Jeri Ryan, is appearing in some episodes early on in the season.

I've rambled enough! Have a great day everyone.

134. New look

Just updated the look of my blog a little bit. When I was working on the sidebar the other day, I decided I wanted to change some things. I liked the basic design, but I changed the colors and changed the sidebar up a little. Took some stuff out. Let me know what you think. I'm off to write some before I head off to bed.

133. Writing realizations

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Did you ever sit there when you're writing or you're reading over what you wrote and see some kind of pattern you're developing with your writing? Something that you seem to do again and again within your own stories? It might be a favorite word or style, a location, or even a type of character? It could be any number of things, but it is something you see in your writing over and over. When you notice it, it makes you think about it and your writing, where you are going with it.

Well, I had one of those realizations the other night when I was writing on my new WIP. Yes I have three now. although one is almost done. I just need to write some hotter than hell sex, and I haven't been in the mood to write hotter than hell sex the last week or so. it's a short gay erotica piece, so all it really does need is for me to wrap it up with the actual sex. I can see the other two WIP's taking more of my time. I'm about halfway done with Crash into me, and this new one has been going at a good pace. The past two nights I've written at least a few pages by hand, and yesterday those pages turned into 3 pages, and this morning before bed, I write out a few more, and I plan to type those in later. There is something different about writing out things by hand than by keyboard. Usually when I write things by hand, it is very rough, and when I type things in additions are easier to make for me.

I got off track though. I was talking about my realization. My realization is that typically one of my male characters tends to be your typical Type A always wants to be in control personality. In the case of Crash into me, both my male leads are that way, which makes it an interesting push and shove because they both want that control. However, one of them in that situation is willing to back down and allow the other to take the lead if necessary. Kaelin and Daniel have been fun to work with, and I know if things hadn't been thrown so positively off track back in July, I'd probably have the first draft done by now. It'll get done though.

In my newest WIP, which I'm going to try to get done for the Shivers contest, my one male Drew, is another typical Type A personality. This guy is really bad about it, and I think that is what is going to make the writing of this one fun because his world is about to get totally turned upside when he finds out the house he just bought is haunted.There is more to the story than the just the haunted house angle, but I don't want to give too much away here yet. I was just interested by the fact that I see this pattern developing with my characters I create. I don't do much pre-writing or plotting before hand. I get an initial concept and just dive in head first. Do any of you out there see any patters in your own writing that appear again and again in your stories? Types of characters, situations or locations that pop up repeatedly?

In other news, my latest book review for over at Romance Divas went up last night. This review was of Guilty Pleasures, a collection of short erotic stories by Maria Isabel Pita from Magic Carpet Books. This paperback was a joy to read over the last month. i would have finished it sooner, but as I mentioned earlier July definitely was a mess for me. I've already signed up for my next review from the site. I'm just waiting for the official assignment to be handed down. to read my review of this book hop on over to here. That is a direct link to the review. You'll need a PDF viewer to read it.

I know I have a few of you out there that use Blogger for your blogs, and today on one of my loops someone posted a link to a plug-in for Microsoft Word that allows you to post to your blogger blog straight from MS Word. I downloaded it and took a quick look at it, and it looks fairly basic. You can find the plug-in here if you want to check it out. for the past month or so I've been using Semagic to update my blogger account since they added that feature to it in the last month or two. It's the same program that I've been using to update my journal on one of the live journal based sites, and its fairly easy to use, has spell check and some basic HTML features to make it easier to post. I figured I would share the link to both in case anyone was interested.

Have a great evening everyone. I'm off to blog hop!

132. Busy Mondays

Monday, August 15, 2005

Don't you hate when you know you read something somewhere, and when you go to look for it, you can't find it. I had that happen today actually, and it can be frustrating. I gave up looking after thirty minutes. One line in one article is like finding a needle in a haystack at times. Another week begins. Monday's always just feel more busy to me, even if there is nothing different than the day before. I don't have children, unless you want to count my two cats as my children. I don't have a job out of writing for various reasons I've mentioned here in my blog previously, so my time is my own. My day's usually start about one in the afternoon, and end somewhere between four and five am. I write my fiction mostly late nights, and I spend my days working on other projects, blog hopping, and reading.

One would think with the more time available to write, I'd write more. In some cases, I do. My productivity writing wise has certainly increased, especially over these summer months. I'm trying to keep up the momentum I've started and push forward with it, write more and more as time progresses. I wish I made more for my writing, but I know that will come with time. With a little persistence, it will happen. Almost seems like I'm giving myself a small pep talk, when I'm really in a positive state of mine about my writing. I know in time it will happen and more money will start coming in. It's just a matter of time and keeping at it.

Do you ever read a book and go "I can do that" or in some cases "I can do better than that." I've seen myself say that a time or two when reading a book. I know I have the skill, and I know that skill is improving with each day that passes. The more I write the more I improve it. As the saying goes, practice makes perfect. However, with writing it is never perfect. You can always improve on your skill. you just need to keep at it, which I know I fully intend to do.

Small side note and question. A couple of months ago I saw a posting over on Romance Divas Forum linking to a place to get a complimentary copy of the premiere issue of Lady Jaided through Ellora's Cave. I had forgotten about it because I hadn't heard back on my request for the free issue. Well, this weekend the magazine arrived in my mail. I haven't read it from cover to the cover yet, but I've flipped through and read a few of the pages, and I'm not sure if this is what I was expecting out of the magazine so far. The advice column alone made me raise an eyebrow. I plan to look at it more tonight, but I was wondering if anyone else that had requested the complimentary issue had received theirs yet. Any thoughts?

I'm off to type in what I wrote by hand this morning before I headed off to bed. Have a great evening everyone.

131. Sunday Ramblings

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Have I ever mentioned the hate I have for HTML coding? I think I might have, but if I haven't, then let me state how much I hate HTML here now. I don't mind links and small things like that, but when you have to go digging through a whole website worth of HTML to edit and add coding to links and all you have is the HTML, my mind and my eyes go crazy. I just spent some time making some small changes to my blog sidebar and my website. Updating links and other information. What should only take someone minutes took me an hour for some reason, and now my brain is playing tired.

I also wrote an article today on some helpful free ware for writers. Writing the article is what led me to this journey into HTML hell, as I call it. I wanted to add the article to my sidebar, its there now if you're interested by the way, and then I saw some other things I could fix and add up. I also added a link you can syndicate my articles on blogcritics with. I know some of you use feed readers, and I didn't even know I had a feed someone could use for my articles on that site until last night.

Speaking of last night, I wrote up both my reviews and turned them in. I will let you know when both those reviews are up. I review for two different sites now, so I had an assignment due for each. Guilty Pleasures for over at Divas, and Latigo for Erotic Romance Reviews for Women. Now that both my assigned readings are done, I'm looking at my TBR pile, and trying to figure out what to read next. I'll decide later. Last night, I also watched Cellular, starring Kim Basinger and Chris Evans. I'd heard some negative reviews about the movie, but nothing else was on, so I decided to give it a shot. It really wasn't a bad movie. Better than some of the other movies I've seen where a phone played part. Definitely some action to it, and it kept me entertained for the ninety minutes it was on. I'd recommend it.

Yesterday, I joined up over at Monica's Writer's Write course at Writers Rooms. It's not really a course, but a way for a small group of people to help encourage either to be more productive with their writing. I participate in a few challenges on different message boards, but I think this will be a bit different. I'm interested in the critique part of it too. I'm wondering how things will all work out. With writing the reviews last night, I didn't get anything done fiction wise, but that will change tonight I'm sure. The reviews needed to be done, and they are.

Have a great night everyone!

130. I step out of the ordinary ...

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Happy Saturday everyone. I'm actually in a really great mood today. Not that I'm not on other days, but I'm in an especially good mood today. I'm getting some things done, and I wrote a little bit last night, so I'm happy about that. The past few days hadn't been that productive writing wise with some outside influences taking my focus away. so last night, I decided to write a little something to just get back into it, so I can try to tackle one of my WIP's today. You can see my short ficlet over at my fiction blog. I possibly even want to start on my WIP for Shivers because the more I think on the idea, the more I like it. It's just finding the time to write it! I have three other WIP's at the moment. One is on hiatus, Crash into me, and the third tentatively titled, For hire. That one is actually fairly short, so I can probably wrap that up in short time. Crash into me has a bit of ways to go yet. last night, I did finish one of my book review assignments, and I should have Guilty Pleasures finished reading wise today as well. I just need to write the reviews themselves, and submit them to their respective sites.

Today in my daily blog hop travels, I found two very interesting posts. One by Kelly and the other by Monica

In her post, Kelly talks about voice and style, and how we create them. Voice seems to be innate. It is a part of you, who you are, your experiences in life create this voice that is uniquely your own. No one else has lived your life, but you. So one else is going to sound just like you. Some may try to imitate, but are they really imitating your voice? No, I think they are imitating your style. Kelly asked an interesting in her post about style and how that is created. Is our style picked up from the books of others we read? Do those authors we read over and over again help us develop our own style?

I wonder what this says about me because growing up I used to read a majority of novels in the horror genre. Books by Rice, King, and Koontz dominated my reading, right along side the romances I read. I think style is picked up by books we read. I'm reminded of something I've heard over and over, and I mentioned this in the comments to Kelly's post. You learn how to write by reading the works of others. the more you read, the more you learn, and then in time the more you write the more you improve on those skills. You can write similar in style to someone, but you can't sound just like them because you have your own voice.

Moving on to Monica's post. Monica discusses the struggle to making a living as a genre fiction writer, and what it takes in order to do it. Simply put, it takes busting ass, as Monica says. you need to be able to get things done. You need to be able to produce words, and those words you do produce have to be good. They have to entertain. You need to be able to write all the time, and keep writing. I write both fiction and nonfiction, and I'm trying to make a name for myself with both. I know the nonfiction might be easier to make money with. I could focus solely on that, and try to make a go at it, but when it comes right down to it, I started as a writer all those years ago because I loved telling stories.

Sometimes busting your ass to get things done, you need to make the unpopular decisions. You need to be able to make the tough choice because the only person that can write is you. No one else. No one can make you sit at the computer and type those words in your head because they are in your head. No one else's. This month, I took a step back from a lot of things I do online. I knew I had a lot I wanted to accomplish this month, and hopefully start a pattern that could continue in future months. Some of my stepping back was perceived as me getting rid of my online friends, ditching them in a sense. /when in fact, I'm right where I've always been. I'm still here. I'm just not as accessible via IM's. I update my blog everyday. No change there. I'm not going to let it stop me from doing what I need to do. Because yes I plan on busting my ass to get it done. Plain and simple.

I usually don't do this, but I've been listening to this song over and over this week. A good song, so I spent the time while writing this post up to upload this song on my slow dial-up because I wanted to share it all with you. Proud by Heather Small was played on Queer as Folk this past Sunday, and it was also played in the opening episode of the show. It's a real positive reaffirming song. You can see the lyrics here, and download the song here. It's got a good beat to it, and I love the lyrics. So if you decide to download, enjoy!

Quick edit - 9:30pm: for some reason, blogger seems to like randomly disabling comments on my entries. I didn't even realize it had done so with this post until just now. It's been fixed.

129. Communication is key

Friday, August 12, 2005

So yesterday I got nothing done. I didn't write an article or anything fiction related at all. I spent a good part of the day reading and relaxing in front of the television. When I don't feel well physically my mood emotionally seems to follow suit. So yesterday was a good day to just stick to myself for a good bit and just be. No have to's or need to's, just sitting there and doing nothing. Nothing like a good cheesy movie to brighten up your mood either. Around midnight, I was flipping through my cable stations and found the cheesiest movie I've seen in years, called The Thunderbirds, about a family of adventurers that are sort of superheroish with no superhero powers It took little to no brain power to watch, and watching it improved my mood for some reason.

Today I got back to work and wrote small review on Bon Jovi's latest video and single just out now. You can find the link to that on my sidebar under recent articles if you're interested. Last night's quiet did allow me to ponder some more about the Shivers contest, and I think I have an idea. I'll try starting on it later and see if I can get something together before the deadline. If I don't, then I'm sure I can find another place for it. My idea sort of involves ghosts and reincarnation ,but that's all I'm saying right now.

The past few weeks I've been diving into my work head first, and I've had to make some sacrifices. I've had to cut back on doing a lot of things I normally would spend my days doing online. I've not been around to talk to people as much, and I made some changes in that department as well. I didn't like doing it because if I could have all the time in the world to talk to everyone I normally talk to and get everything I need done, I'd do it in a heartbeat.

With the Internet, it is hard to know when someone does something whether or not they did it in a malicious or non-malicious tone, so I've learned communication is always key. You can't judge tone by just reading the words on the screen. If you think something is up, it is so easy to drop an email or whatever method of communication you use to find out what is up. I had something like this happen just in the last few days, and I wish instead of assuming something the person could have just come to me. It could have saved a bit of hurt on both sides. We can't go back and change it, but we can move forward with the knowledge that not everything appears to be how you think it is. A little communication can go a long way.

Have a great evening everyone.

128. Feeling a bit under the weather

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Started last night with a headache, then sometime later a stomach ache, and today I woke up just feeling way less than 100%. I'm sure I'll be okay in the next day or so, but I just don't feel like sitting at the computer much at the moment. I actually crawled back under the covers for a bit, and I just returned here. Laying down away from the computer is allowing me to read more of Guilty Pleasures, which I am almost done with. Then I can write up my review for over at Romance Divas. I have some of it written already in my head. I just need to finish reading all of the stories in the collection before sitting down to write.

Last night was the fourth episode of So you think you can dance. A show I was truly unsure of the first two episodes that aired. The show at first didn't hold my attention much at all, but I stayed with it for a third week, and turned out to be pleasantly surprised by the show's improvement. Last night's episode was even better, and starting next week the true competition begins. I'm excited to see what the final sixteen chosen to go forth in front of the American viewing audience for their votes will do. To read my full recap of last night's show, hop on over to here.

On my post yesterday, Briana challenged me to something for Phaze's Shiver contest. I'm giving some thought to her challenge. A I'm just not sure of a story yet. I'll give it some more thought today, although I'm not sure I'll be able to start today the way I'm feeling. Guess we will have to see. Right now I think I'm off to read another story in my book, and allow the meds I just took to work.

Have a great evening everyone.

127. When it all comes at you at once ...

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

I'm sitting here at the computer bundled up. Sweats, socks, and you're all probably wondering why? I live in Arizona. It is currently in the 90's, but somehow the air kicked in so well today that it feels like it 70 in our apartment. No, 70 isn't cold by most standards, but when you're used to it being over 110 outside, a forty degree drop in temperature gets noticed. It's been cloudy a lot the last few days. Cloudy and humid. It rained for a good while yesterday too. We need rain here, so it is all good in my book.

Last night things got crazy, and they are still crazy. I had actually started to think that this month wouldn't be as bad as I thought it would be, and I could loosen up the reigns a bit. Well, no sooner had I thought that things suddenly got really busy again. I've been emailing people, writing, reading for two book review assignments, working on a couple of different stories, and playing with ideas for others I want to write. A lot of things just happened all at once.

I had noticed the other day when my Queer as Folk recap went up, a few small errors had been made. A typo here, a missed word there, and others that saw the review were letting me know of the errors made. As soon as I saw them, I did try to email the main site email that publishes the article, and I heard nothing back. So I decided to go through my files and locate the direct email to the editor that I had assigned me the column. Emailed that person late last night, and within thirty minutes had heard back with the corrections having already been made. Now that was fast, and it definitely was a relief to see the situation handled so quickly.

I look at the deadlines coming up for contests this month, and Phaze's Shiver contest really interests me. I have a couple of ideas I could play with, but nothing started. 5,000 words this month for that story might be asking too much of myself especially with my two other current WIP's demanding attention as well. I wish there was time to do it all. I wish there wasn't this little thing called sleep that all our bodies need because when it starts hitting near 3am, my mind usually starts to shutdown, and the only thing I'm good for at that point is reading. That's when I get a lot of my reading done. Between 3 and 5am because no matter how much I try I can't seem to get to sleep before 5am.

Have a great night everyone.

126. And the rain comes falling down

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Posting a bit later than usual today. Yesterday, my mouse once again died on me. The brand new wireless mouse that came as part of my wireless mouse and keyboard set. The keyboard gave me no trouble at all. The batteries in the mouse will hopefully not die, and the keyboard will work too. The keyboard that came with the other set actually gave me no problems at all. When I was out, it began to rain. Yes, it does rain here in Arizona. We have a storm brewing overhead now, and I should probably think of signing off because we do have lightning and heavy thunder overhead. I love the rain. I hate storms. I hate thunder. Always have. If I could have the rain, ad not the thunder then I'd be happy as a clam, but we can't have what we want all the time.

Yesterday, I got my second assignment from ERRW. This one is a gay western novel. I'm about 30 pages in now, and I'm enjoying it so far. Check back in a week or two for that review. Last night, I posted a short ficlet based on a scene in the last episode of queer as Folk. I expanded on it a bit, and put it up in a Queer as Folk community over on live journal and on my fiction blog. By the time I went to bed last night, someone had taken the story, translated it into what I think is Hebrew and posted it on a foreign language fan site for the show. I've received a few other comments as well. all positive, so I'm glad people liked it. I used to write fan fiction years ago, but I've never written fiction in that fandom up til now. The two pieces I wrote in just the last week have been liked. It gets me writing.That is the important thing when it comes right down to it.

As Jill mentioned in her blog just last night, we all have our own way of doing things. We do what works for us. I want to write more. Last month was a hard month personally, but I stuck through, and this month has been a lot better so far. I've written nearly 8000 words this month between nonfiction and fiction pieces, and it is only the 9th. i need to work on something to submit to Torquere's contest coming up on deadline soon. It's for a flash fic, so I should be able to. Right now, it is getting really stormy out and I'm needing to go grab dinner now, so I'm going to cut this short.

Have a great night everyone.

125. Good-bye to a favorite

Monday, August 08, 2005

I'd like to start off my post today by talking about Queer as Folk. As I mentioned in my post yesterday, last night marked the final episode in this series run. I have been a fan of this show since it began back in 2000. I didn't watch it at first, but Showtime aired marathon one New Year's Eve, and I remember watching the show from midnight til about 3am. They showed the first four episodes, and I was immediately hooked. Before Queer as Folk, I didn't give much thought to the gay community. I had friends that were gay, family members even, but until this show I never gave much thought to those living in that community.

This show changed all of that. This show opened my eyes. It helped change how I look at the world around me. Because of this show, I ventured into a genre of fiction I had never written in before. I began writing gay fiction in 2001. I first started with fan fiction, and by 2003 I was ready to move onto original fiction, which I'm still working on and pursuing now. This show helped me find a comfortableness in my own self, and it also gave me the ability to go out of myself and write about something I had no experience of my own in. I'm not a gay man. I am a bisexual woman, and I have no problem saying that to whoever may ask me. Before this show, I hid that from even myself. My family knew long before I even accepted it.

Queer as Folk paved the way for gay television. Today, we now have entirely gay networks coming to cable companies in many cities. That would have been unheard of before this show premiered, and to think this show was thought to have no chance of making it when it first aired. Many thought it wouldn't last at all. It was too much for television. Too gritty. Too honest. However, that honesty is what made this show work. Straight and gay all joined together to watch this show. Sexuality and gender didn't matter. The story of these character's lives is what mattered to those that watched this show faithfully week after week.

Last night's episode made me cry. It wrapped it all up. We knew where all the character's were going, and the show ended as it began. With a realistic ending that stayed true to the character's portrayed. I've had problems with this season, but I had not one problem with this episode. It made me cry and it allowed me the chance to say good-bye to this show that will always have a special place in my heart. To read my review and thoughts about this show leaving the airwaves go here.

Just before the show began to air, I heard the news of Peter Jennings passing on. I hadn't heard he was ill, but I was immediately saddened to hear of his passing. I had seen him grace the small screen with his reporting since I was a young child, and I know many will miss him.

I really didn't get any writing done on For Hire or Crash into me last night, but I kind of expected that with the airing of Queer as Folk and having to write up my review. The review was a bit longer than my usual, so it took a bit more to write. I plan to get back on track later today. I did submit a couple of short stories to different contests the other night though, so things are moving right along.

Have a great day everyone!

124. Sunday Ramblings

Sunday, August 07, 2005

The past couple of days I had been feeling a bit lazy. I had finally straightened out things in one area of my life, and I had started with a good push towards successfully completing my writing goals for this month early on. On Thursday and Friday night, I hadn't worked on either of current WIP's, Crash into me, and a second one I started earlier this week, which looks like it might push the 3,000 to 4,000 word count mark. I'm pushing just over 2,000 now, so I can see that hopefully done in a week or two. Then comes trying to find a place to submit it. That is sometimes harder than the writing itself in some cases. I do have an idea though, so maybe it won't be so bad.

Well, all this feeling guilty and telling myself I would get back on track doesn't work. The only thing that works is actually sitting down and doing it. Well, that is what I did. I planted my butt in my chair, and popped over to Evolution's Storm Chat where Nonny was also writing, and I challenged myself to writing a 1,000 words. It took me a couple of hours, taking a few small breaks in between every few hundred words, but in the end, I had written 1,099 words on my new WIP. I don't have a title for it yet, but the working title I'm using to save it under is For hire. The basic premise of the short is Kyle gives the gift of a hooker to his friend Caleb. Short, hot, and yes sex-filled. I also worked some on Crash into me the other night, and things are going smoothly there as well. I've been giving thought to trying to revive Lonely Street once Crash into me is done. Maybe sooner. I guess I will have to wait and see on that one.

Last night I spent my night watching movies on cable, as I usually do on Saturday night's. I caught First Daughter on HBO. Cute movie. Same basic premise as Chasing Liberty, which I had seen in the past with Mandy Moore. I even have the movie on DVD. The only difference between the two films is one goes to college in the beginning of the movie, and the other at the end. Not much difference between the two really. I also saw the end of Peter Pan again. The most recent adaptation of the classic story. During that one scene where Tink dies, and everyone is chanting "I do believe in fairies. I do. I do." I get all teary-eyed. The classics never seen to grow too old. I've watched many of the re-tellings of this story, and it always gets me.

When Queer as Folk even used a reference to it in last week's episode when Brian told Lindsay, "I don't want you to go, Wendy." I just started crying because it just fit those two characters. Brian has always been considered the boy that would never grow up. He was Queer s Folk's Peter, and Lindsay has been his female best friend since episode one of the series. Speaking of the series, tonight is the finale. The last time it will air. It makes me sad to say one last good-bye to these characters, but all good things must come to an end.

Have a great Sunday everyone.

123. A couple of announcements

Saturday, August 06, 2005

I know I've already posted once today already, but I had to come on again to make two quick announcements.

Announcement One:

Author Marianne Mancusi came home from this year's RWA conference in Reno to find her home had been struck by lightning and burned to the ground. She lost everything. Since news of this first came to light and spread, many jumped in to send her books to rebuild her lost library of books. Other have denoted signed books and critiques that are now being auctioned on E-bay. The first of the auctions went up today, but more will go up in days to come. If there is anything you can do to help please check out Literary Chicks for details of where to send donations and for information on the auctions.

Announcement Two:

A posting from the ERWF Blog Circle on a new release:

Image hosted by Photobucket.com It’s been a fairly busy month with my new gay western e-novella coming out from Loose-ID.

“Richard is worn out, used up, and just plain cynical. Son of a wealthy Bostonian banker, he came west to gamble and carouse when his life fell apart. Though a sensitive and moral man, he finds a reckless life easier to bear—since he has no one to care about and no real hopes for his future.

Brave, beautiful U.S. Marshall Wayne Sneddon wants to change all that. He enlists Richard to help him find and take down a bigwig out to get water rights for himself, regardless of the settlers in the way. In part, Wayne needs help, but more, he wants Richard’s company.

In between the shooting, fighting and intrigue, Richard comes to share Wayne’s feelings…but after he finds the courage to share Wayne’s bed, will he find the courage to share his feelings?

Sometimes just about anything is easier than Dealing Straight.”

To read an excerpt go here.

122. Marking it down to learning

music:bed of lies - MB20

Do you ever find yourself reading something on a fellow writer's blog and just nodding a long. They explained something perfectly. They understand. That happened to me last night when I stumbled across Jenny Crusie's blog. I saw a few bloggers link to her, so I just had to check it out. You've got to love the power of the link. On her post about writer's organizations, she said the following:

"Face it, nobody becomes a writer to meet people. If we could play well with others, we wouldn't be making up our own worlds. And that means many of us--and I do mean "us," I'm in there, too--can have a hard time seeing anybody's reality but our own. Which leads to mistakes. Big ones."

I've seen many writer's make similar statements, and I've even mentioned this in my own blog some time ago. Writer's seem to be a breed of people all their own. They are different. Personally, I find myself enjoying my own company more than company of others. There are a select few that I would consider friends or close to me. The ones that I allow close to me I almost consider them family. In most cases, I've known them for years, and they get my little quirks. They know when I get in certain moods to leave me alone, and they know how I get when I'm working on something.

When you factor the Internet into the equation, you add a whole other element. With the Internet, you can't see facial expressions, hear tone of voice, or anything of that sort. You don't know if the words someone types are indeed truthful of their lives or their own feelings. Someone could be speaking "I love you's," but laughing their head off on the other side of their computer screen. You just don't know. At times I have tons of people around me online. Friends from all parts of the country. There are times that I find myself changing friendships. Backing away from some, and getting closer to others. I remember in just the last few weeks taking one of those quiz things, and said I change friends frequently. I didn't give it much thought then, but the thought kept coming back to me.

I guess in a way I do change friends frequently. Just this week, I made a drastic change. I didn't plan on doing it, but a lot of thoughts have been swirling around my head the last week or two. I knew that if I needed to get things done this month and start some kind of pattern to take me through future months, I would have to buckle down. Spending ten to twelve hours a day on instant messenger was not the way to do it. I love talking to people, but sometimes you need to put a stop to things.

As writer's we generally stick to ourselves or with other writer's. Other writer's get it. They get those moments that come where you need to write or you'll lose it with the ping of an instant message being received. Writer's just don't seem to play well with other's. Each writer has their own little quirks. I can go days without wanting to talk to anyone but select group of people. Like I've done this week, I've talked to at most five people. That select core of people I know I will probably always have in my life in some way or another. No matter what you do, you always seem to end up with those people in your life that you know you want to always be there. For me, I have a core of seven. Yes, I've met them all online, and some I have known close to three years now. We've spent hours on IM's and on the phone as well.

This week, I've spent time talking to them, trying to explain things and how I feel about certain situations, and they just seem to get it. I've done the same with others, and I get frustrated because it seems I'm repeating myself over and over. Saying the same things. I've been told my not wanting to talk to anyone is just a phase, when I know that isn't the case. I've always been like this. I've been a writer. If being a writer is just a phase, what a long phase to be in. I've been writing since my early childhood.

What do you think about what Jenny said? Do you agree that we as writer's just don't play well with others? I don't mean in special circumstances such as conferences and meetings, but in general everyday life? Do you find yourself getting along with just a select few and not the world at large? Are we our own breed?

Quick note, my review of Bodies Beautiful is up over at the ERRW. Check that out on my sidebar. Have a great day everyone!

121. Who knew?

Friday, August 05, 2005

About a month and half ago, I began recapping and reviewing this current season of the Real World taped in Austin months ago, and now airing Tuesday nights on MTV. I have watched almost every season of the Real World since the show began airing in 1990. I've only missed two seasons, London and Back to New York. They just didn't grab me early on. When I began posting my recaps, I never realized how much attention the recaps would start to get. It is just mind boggling to me. Each and every morning this week, I've come online to a filled mailbox with comments left on my recaps. The other morning I had just 30 emails alone from those reviews. Today I think I received nearly 20. I get more comments directly after the show airs, but I've been getting responses the entire week of. Some of the comments left are a bit rude, but people are watching the show and commenting based off of what they see.

My recaps have made it to the hot articles listing on the site every day. Just yesterday when I looked, three of the seven recaps I had written so far this season were all in the hot articles box under video, all at the same time. Right now, I just checked and the two most recaps are listed in the hot box. I never really imagined they would get so much attention. The site they appear on as even placed a link to a master post containing all my reviews on the sites sidebar. Since I watch the show weekly anyway, my recaps are easy to write. The show airs at 10pm PST, and by 11pm PST my recap of that week's episode is usually already up. Sometimes even quicker than that. I'm already trying to figure out what fall shows to recap and review. I've got some thoughts, and I think my plan is to recap one returning favorite and pick one new show to recap. I also plan to recap The L Word in 2006 to see if Gaywired is interested in picking those up as they were with my Queer as Folk recaps and reviews.

Last night, I didn't get much done on Crash into me. I did write a short ficlet based off a prompt on a community I am a member of on live journal. That was posted over on my fiction blog if you're interested in hopping over there. What I did do last night was give some thought to one of the contests I wish to enter this month. Torquere Press announced a new contest for this month earlier this week. The contest theme is safe sex. I kept trying to figure out a plot and a story that I could easily slip in the condom usage in. What's so difficult about that? They use a condom. Well, sometimes having the characters stop in the middle of the action to put on a condom just ruins the whole flow of the story. So I'm trying to figure out how to keep the story hot and flowing.

The things we have to sit there and think about huh? I know in the past I've read posts that have talked about including safe sex in their stories. Suzanne McMinn, I believe had a post discussing the topic in recent months. I'm not sure, but I believe it was her. What do you think about safe sex in fiction stories? Do you think it works or do you think it interrupts the flow of things to halt things to scramble for a condom? I know in this day and age the reality is safe sex is smarter sex, but are we going for reality or for fantasy with our stories? Since I write gay erotica, safe sex seems to become even more of an issue. However, it is an issue in straight stories as well, and I have seen books where the hero stops to put on protection before throwing the heroine down on the bed and doing the deed. The scenes I have read have been handled well too.

One more quick thing, I was excited to learn today that I won a giveaway of the paperback edition of Never Love a stranger by Ellen Fisher today. I should be seeing that in my mail shortly!

Hope all are well. Have a great night everyone.

120. Authors reviewing other authors

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Yesterday, the romance author side of the blogosphere was buzzing about authors reviewing other authors. This subject came up after a review posted over at Paperback Reader. I followed the discussion closely, and a few blogs had discussions over the topic including Helen Kay's and Alison Kent. This topic really interested me because I've reviewed books in the past. I've reviewed for Romance Divas, and I am now reviewing e-books for Erotic Romance Reviews for Women.

As a writer myself, I know bad reviews or criticism can hurt. Yes, when someone puts down the work you've worked so long and hard on it does hurt, but in time you realize those criticisms will only help you improve your writing that much more. This is true especially for the beginning author. I've not yet had my fiction published, but I have been writing non-fiction for years. I've written as column for writers in the past, and the last few years I've written reviews for everything computer hardware and software, movies, music, television, and now I'm jumping into book reviews.

With my book reviews, I always give careful thought before I type. I both praise the author and if anything sticks out at me, I do mention it. I see reviewing anything, including books, as a totally separate entity from my fiction writing. I wear more of a journalistic hat when I review anything. I'm writing to inform the public, and because I'm doing that I want to be as honest as I can be about what I've read. Writing a review of complete praise when it isn't deserved is being dishonest to the person reading the review, especially since some do base their book buying based on what they read on reviews.

If any of you have read my reviews of this season's Queer as Folk you've seen me make point after point about what was wrong with the show this season. I hated doing it, and even after writing the reviews I spoke to those that I knew that I felt like I was ripping on the show when I completely and totally adore it. The writers of the show did make some decisions for characters this season that I found myself totally disagreeing with, and I didn't hold back from mentioning those things. I shouldn't have to. The same should be said for books. I should be able to give an honest review of a book as well. As for the review in question, I read it and yes it was an honest review. I didn't see anything wrong with it. That is just my opinion though. One of many, and we all know people are entitled to difference's of opinion.

In personal writing news, last night was a really good writing night for me. Ever written one of those sequences in a scene where the fingers just seem to fly over the keys and you write it so fast you're not even thinking about it. The character itself has somehow possessed you and when you pick up your hands from the keyboard you're grinning like an idiot? Well, I had one of those moments last night while working on Crash into me. I'm so happy Kaelin and Daniel are cooperating again. Speaking of writing, I added a announcement script on my sidebar from feed burner for my fiction blog that will show when things are updated as well, in case I forget to mention it here.

Last night was the third episode of So you think you can dance on FOX. I'd been watching the past couple of episodes totally bored with the show. It was on for way too long, and the selection process was just tedious. Last night's episode was much better, but I am definitely waiting for Fall TV to come back. If you're interested in my recap of last night's episode, check out my sidebar for the link to my recap on Blogcritics, which I'm happy to report just hit the ten million mark in unique visitors. You can read all about that achievement

Have a wonderful day, everyone.

119. RWA revisited again

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Shortly after I posted my blog yesterday, I went off to read the blogs of others, and I found the topic of the day happened to be the RWA conference. As I expected to be. Not much had been said about those that attended the conference up to that point, so I was getting curious. I am not an RWA member, but I do like knowing what is happening in case I do decide to join. This summer seems to be one mess after another through when it comes to the RWA.

First we had graphical standards. Sites that contained certain words or hotter covers might lose their link from the main site. We all remember what turmoil and outrage this caused. Next came the RWA trying to set a definition of romance. A definition that appeared to leave out same sex relationships and those of a paranormal nature. Both of which are popular. We also have a definition that might leave those that write the steamier erotic romances out in the cold.

Well, now we have the latest in the long line of problems this summer. This taking place at the RWA national conference Golden Heart and Rita awards ceremony. I know a few of the nominees, and I wanted to know how these went. When the results were announced this past Saturday night reported in by text by Sylvia Day, I was excited. Never did I imagine the scenario that has come to light about the awards ceremony just in the last day. Through my blog hopping I found a post Selah March. I found other posts as well, including one by Candy at Smart Bitches, Trashy books.

The tale of the ceremony itself is mind boggling. The fact that Nora Roberts herself backed out the day before the ceremony was to be held speaks volumes in itself to me. Nora herself posted a statement on her message board that she had asked to have read before the ceremony, and it wasn't.

I don't see how showing image after image of tragic events over the last twenty five years was in the best interest to the RWA and its membership. Romance novels are supposed to be fun and positive. The awards ceremony is to celebrate romance novels and acknowledge those that have done the romance genre well. We have so much going on in the world. Daily I read the news and I see bombings taking place, people dying all across the globe. No, we shouldn't forget these events have occurred, but do we want to be reminded of them at a place that is supposed to be a celebration?

In today's blog hopping I learned of more that happened at the conference. Again from a post in Selah's blog. This in regards to erotic romance. Apparently someone asked the powers that be about adding an erotic romance category to the awards, and they were given a very cold reception. That just makes me sad to know. If it did happen that is. I wasn't there, so I have no way of knowing personally. I just know with so many authors writing in this genre, and even a chapter specifically for erotic romance now in place, not recognizing these authors just seems wrong. At least in my opinion. With each day that passes, and with each event that occurs, I find myself wanting less and less to join the RWA, and possibly finding another organization to join.

I know that some say having an RWA membership show you are serious about your craft, but I think I can show that just as much without it. I do wish I could join for the comraderie of the organization, and someday I just might do that. I'll never say never cause that is when you can get yourself in trouble.

Hope all are well. Have a great day everyone.

118 . A virtual potpourri

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Computers are lucky they let us do so much or else they would frustrate us so much that we would never want to use them. Last night I was downloading some files while working on Crash into me. Yes, I found Daniel and Kaelin, by the way. Daniel was talking to me, and all of a sudden my virus program announced I had a virus, and another, and another and another. I sat there for a moment watching alert after alert pop up as I fixed them. So I closed all my programs down, and I went to work getting rid of it. I'm pretty handy with a computer, and it took me just an hour to fix the problem. I had to come online and find the actual file that was loading the virus and how to rid my computer of it. At first, it was being picky, and during the process my mouse started acting funny. I thought maybe the virus had corrupted the mouse driver's on my new wireless mouse.

So I went back to my old mouse, and got the virus eradicated, and then I went back to my new mouse and it didn't work at all. I finally gave up around 5:30 this morning. Woke up, and it worked fine ... for five minutes. It died, and I mean totally died. I had myself and my brother look at it. We thought it might be the batteries, but I thought that was impossible. I haven't had the mouse and keyboard not even a week. Well, I found the 800 number for the company that produces the wireless set, and called them. The woman immediately told me I needed new batteries. Found some new ones, and put them in. Mouse worked perfect. Technology is sometimes more of a pain than its worth.

But, yes Kaelin and Daniel are cooperating, and I'm also working on another short with a Caleb and another guy that I just realized doesn't have a name yet. I'll fix that tonight. I bounce back and forth between the two. One night, I work on one, and the next the other. Caleb's story shouldn't be too long. I also need to work on some other things. I'm taking one thing at a time. I did write almost 800 words yesterday, so I'm pleased with that. I wrote a response to a prompt over Muse Muggers, and that was posted over at my fiction blog if you wanted to hop on over there to check that out.

Yesterday, I found a fun site through I blog I had hopped too, Astrology for Writer's. I am a horoscope nut. I have my horoscope sent to me in my email daily from a couple of different sites, but this one gives you a monthly horoscope outlook for writer's and other creative type folks. Sometimes it is freaky how right on my horoscopes are, and this time is no exception.

This is the one for August:

capricorn: you are indispensable. without capricorns, no skyscrapers would be built, no fortunes would be passed down. you feel a bit abused lately as lady luck is taking some sort of vacation from your life, but your winning ways will return, most likely in the fall.

The one for July spoke about how I would be hitting a dip in productivity that month, but it would pick back up. And boy, doesn't that hit it right on the nail. I did slow down in a sense. My fiction writing was nonexistent, but I wrote nearly 20,000 words total, and that didn't include any writing I did in this blog or in my personal journal. When you add those in, I p=probably pushed 40,000 words. If I focused all those words on my fiction, I'd have a new novella every month. If only I could do that right? Since I write a little bit of everything, I need to give equal attention to both. I'm hoping the patterns I establish this month during Evolunacy stay with me past this month. I want to give both my fiction and nonfiction equal attention.

Hope you're all well. Have a great day everyone!

117. The month begins

Monday, August 01, 2005

mood: busy
music: Bon Jovi

You ever have one of the moments when you look at all you have to get done, and it overwhelms you. There is much you need to get done, and you're wondering if there is any possible way you can get it all done. That moment hit me last night as I was working on my new fiction blog and thinking about this month. I knew I couldn't put off thinking about it anymore. The month was upon us, and I would have to truly buckle down in order to get things done. There are several contests I want to enter. I want to keep things up with my nonfiction because this month was really good for me this past month in that department.

I signed up for Evolunacy with a goal of 10,000 words. Those aren't just any old words either. They are fiction words. 10,000 words of fiction between midnight last night and September 1st. I honestly don't remember where I got so much out of me fiction wise. Probably years. I write slow when it comes to my fiction. Some nights it is like pulling teeth, but I figured if I can get 325 words of fiction written on average each night, 10,000 words is a goal I can accomplish. It will just take me focusing on that goal. Focusing and working. Some days I work on my nonfiction, and my brain is too drained to do anything else. So I just don't pull out any of my stories. I need to stop doing that. I need to write anyway. Both are important to me, and I know with a combination of both I will probably be able to make a living, but that won't happen by me just sitting there and doing nothing. I need to work it. Yes, I'm giving myself a little bit of a peptalk as you can see. I panicked last night with the prospect of this month looming before me, and I know I have a lot I want to get done. I know there is a chance I might not get it all done, but I'm sure as hell going to try.

Earlier this morning I finally finished Street Where She Lives by Jill Shalvis. I totally loved the story, and I wrote up a tiny review of it for Amazon, so click on the link if you want to check that out. Right now I need to get on reading Guilty Pleasures. I'm about a third of the way through, and I also turned in my review of Beautiful Bodies last night to ERRW. I'll let you know when that is up.

On the writing front, my review for this week's episode of Queer as Folk is up. Last night's episode was truly wonderful. For some reason, I had the idea in my head that the final two episodes were going to air last night, but I'm glad that I wasn't. I'm really not ready to say good-bye to this show yet. Next week will be a sad good-bye to a show that has been one of my favorites since the very beginning.

I also got some work done on a new story I'm working on that I am hoping to submit to the Boysex anthology. I also need to pull out something I wrote months ago and submit that to what was the Wax Romantic contest. The site moved owners, but the contest appears to still be on.

The other day I added another shout box to my sidebar. The one through Tag-board had appeared to be giving me problems, so I decided to look for an alternative. I like the look of this one better. Less bulky. So feel free to leave a shout if you'd like. And for some reason this entry posted, and then quickly disappeared. Odd! It has happened twice now. Within minutes of posting, this post has promptly disappeared. Let's hope third time is the charm.

Have a great day everyone!

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