Friday, September 30, 2005

Vampires, Shapeshifters and Others, Oh My!

What is it about the supernatural that draws us so?

Let's start with vampires. Not too long ago, on an author's yahoo! group to which I belong, someone commented that she just didn't get others' fascination with vampires. Undead, blood-sucking... ew (to paraphrase). But there is something fascinating and forbidden about love with a vampire. To let a man with sharp teeth and extreme strength close to your neck (or any other part of your body) is to open yourself to danger. Potentially. If he's the hero of the story, he'll use his vampiric abilities and strength to protect the heroine. To enhance their lovemaking. But there's still that element of danger...

Then there's the furry boys. Shapeshifters. Werewolves, werecats (werelions, werepanthers, weretigers, werejaguars), werebirds (werehawks, wereeagles), werebunnies... Okay, okay. No werebunnies. I have a really hard time picturing any Alpha male as a werebunny. Maybe a werejackalope? Kidding! I'm just kidding. But, in all seriousnesss, as with vampires, shapeshifters present a heroine with a sense of peril. One slash from razor-sharp claws, and she's dinner. But they're also innately sensual, so watch out.

Finally, the Others. Witches, faeries, humans with extraordinary abilities.

Some of my favorite authors write of vampires, shapeshifters, and Others. Christine Feehan, Sherrilyn Kenyon, JR Ward, Angela Knight, Christine Warren, Amanda Ashley. And more. If you haven't read anything by one of these writers, and you love the supernatural, try them. (Note: Angela Knight and Christine Warren write erotic romance, so be prepared for a very sizzling read.)

Thursday, September 29, 2005

There's More To A Writer's Life...

... than just writing. I've just spent about six hours (not a lot, considering!) putting together and publishing my website. It's about as good as a non-techno geek like me can do. Check it out at

I wanted to make the site as friendly as possible, give a sense of my personality, while still keeping it professional. I think I've succeeded.

I can't wait until I can actually post images of my books! We'll be popping a bit o' the bubbly then.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

More on Alphas

I recently read a very interesting post by multi-published romance author Suzanne Brockman regarding Alpha males. The basic question: what is it about Alpha men that so engages the female psyche? (To read the post yourself:

Suzanne's premise is that Alpha males are "made" one of two ways. More than just the personality traits that a baby is born with, his upbringing and environment play an important part in shaping his personality. If a sensitive, beta-type boy is subjected to an abusive, "be-tough-or-get-crushed" environment, it's probable he'll grow up to be an alpha male. He'll learn to fight. He'll learn to hide his feelings, at least, he'll hide the ones he allows himself to have.

On the other hand, a baby that has an alpha personality but is raised in a loving, supportive family will be tough but able to admit (probably with hands on his hips and an eyebrow raised that says "you got a problem with that?") that he likes to knit. But he's probably not comfortable talking about his feelings.

Women love these kinds of men. What woman doesn't want to be the one who brings such a strong, controlled man to an explosion of emotion? Because, as Suzanne says, when an alpha male loves, he loves completely. Endlessly. When they give in to their feelings and allow themselves to love, it's BIG.

Can it get any better than that?

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Alpha Does Not Equal Abusive

I'm sitting here watching the Maury Povich show, with my mouth open in shock. Now, I don't know how much "stock" I place in these types of shows. The idea of someone going on national TV and admitting to their stupid behaviors is beyond my comprehension. But then I'm a very private person. I like to keep my stupidity to myself whenever possible.

The show today has four couples. Each of the men is verbally and/or physically abusive to their wives in order to control them. Because, according to these men, their women can't seem to manage themselves. So they belittle them, slap them, push them, choke them, whatever it takes. One of the men has forbidden his wife to have friends or to have anything to do with her family. Because he's all she needs. And because these women, their wives, are PROPERTY.

And these women stay with them because... they love them. Ack! I don't get it. I dated a guy when I was 15 who wanted to control me. He didn't like it when I spent time with my girlfriends, let alone any friends who happened to be male. He was at my house when I got home from school, and stayed well after I went to bed. (Kept my mom up until midnight many times, which she did not appreciate.) I put up with it for about 2 months, then broke up with him. The last I heard, he was married and had 4 kids. I hope he grew out of his need to control his woman. If not, I feel very sorry for his wife.

Whether this show is "true" or not, I gotta tell you: being a man is NOT about control. It's about love. Most women today are strong and capable human beings. They don't need someone to make decisions for them; they can make their own. They don't need someone to protect them; they can protect themselves. What they want is someone to cherish them, to laugh with them, to hold them when life gets rough. They don't need a man to tell them they're stupid. Believe me, guys, when we women do something that wasn't quite the smoothest of moves, we call ourselves all kinds of names. Don't need you to do it, too.

I love my Alpha heroes. They're tough and rough and ready for action. They love their women more than they love themselves.

That's what being a man is about.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Another submission

It's amazing how the butterflies in my stomach turn into Godzilla-sized bogies when it comes time to press the "send" button on an electronic submission. One of the hardest things to do as a writer is not take rejection personally.

And not automotically assume your work will be rejected. :)

While I'm waiting to hear back from Kate Duffy with an offer (see, there's optimism for you!), I'm sending off my submission to Liquid Silver Books for their final Zodiac contest opening (Pisces). A friend of mine made her first foray into the life of the published author by being selected for the Scorpio book (congrats again, Jenna!). She and I will both be published by Whiskey Creek Press-Torrid; I hope to join her at LSB, too.

Keepin' my fingers crossed...

Friday, September 23, 2005

My first sales

Back in February, I took an on-line writing class that was taught by Jan Springer. The class was about writing erotic romance. I had discovered erotic romances, as a reader, about three or four months earlier. I was hooked. And, I thought, if I could get over my initial modesty, I could write that type of romance.

I was lucky enough to have several wonderful and talented ladies in this class, and we established ourselves as a support and critique group. Through their help, I have since sold twice: one novella ("Dragon's Bane") and one short story ("Careful Wishes") to Whiskey Creek Press-Torrid. My latest contest entry, "City of the Dead", is on its way to NY to the desk of Kate Duffy at Kensington.

I'm so thrilled, I can hardly stand myself.