Friday, November 28, 2008

Friday Funny

Turkey Hunter's Tale

Tommy and Billy were discussing the their latest turkey shoot. Tommy says emphatically, "I am never going to take my wife Laura shooting with me ever again!"

"That bad, eh?" enquires Billy with a smile.

"Yeah, she did everything wrong, got nothing right. She chattered too much, constantly disturbed the undergrowth, loaded the wrong gauge shot in the gun, used the wrong luring whistles and worst of all," bellows Tommy, "she shot more turkeys than me!"

All I have to say is... You go, girl! LOL

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Tipsy Tuesday

According to Publisher's Weekly:

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt has asked its editors to stop buying books. Josef Blumenfeld, Vice President of Communications for HMH, confirmed that the publisher has “temporarily stopped acquiring manuscripts” across its trade and reference divisions. The directive was given verbally to a handful of executives and, according to Blumenfeld, is “not a permanent change.” Blumenfeld, who hedged on when the ban might be lifted, said that the right project could still go to the editorial review board. He also maintained that the the decision is less about taking drastic measures than conducting good business.

“In this case, it’s a symbol of doing things smarter; it’s not an indicator of the end of literature,” he said. “We have turned off the spigot, but we have a very robust pipeline.” The action by the highly leveraged HMH may also be as much about the company's need to cut costs in a tight credit about the current economic slowdown.

While Blumenfeld dismissed the severity of the policy, a number of agents said they have never heard of a publisher going so far as to instruct its editors to stop acquiring. “I’ve been in the business a long time and at a couple of houses I worked at, when things were bad, we were asked to cut back,” said agent Jonathon Lazear. “But I’ve never heard of anything so public.” Lazear added that, in the past two weeks, business has been more “sluggish” than it had been all year.

Another agent who had also heard about the no-acquisitions policy at HMH called the move “very scary” and said it's indicative of an industry climate worse than any he’s ever seen.

Thus far one agent has confirmed that at least one of his manuscripts has been declined at HMH per the policy. But perhaps an editor at the house put it best; in an e-mail, the editor mentioned the policy and added, “Who knows what’s next.”

At my local RWA chapter meeting on Saturday, agent Jessica Faust of BookEnds, Inc. spoke briefly about the economy and how it may affect the publishing industry. Her take on things is that the fiction publishers she deals with right now have not announced any cutbacks in their monthly publishing slots (i.e., if they normally print 3 romances, 2 mysteries and 4 sci fi books, they're still doing that same number), but they are being more selective in what they're buying.

What does this mean for writers? That you need to write a better book than the next guy, pure and simple. And that you shouldn't give up. It can still happen for you.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Man Meat Monday

This is one of my favorites. Growwwwf!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Friday Funny

One day a father gets out of work and on his way home he suddenly remembers that it's his daughter's birthday. He goes into a toy shop and asks the sales person, "How much for one of those Barbies in the display window?"

The salesperson answers, "Which one do you mean, sir? We have: Work Out Barbie for $19.95, Shopping Barbie for $19.95, Beach Barbie for $19.95, Disco Barbie for $19.95, Ballerina Barbie for $19.95, Astronaut Barbie For $19.95, Skater Barbie for $19.95, and Divorced Barbie for $265.95."

The amazed father asks, "It's what?! Why is the Divorced Barbie $265.95 and the others only $19.95?"

The annoyed salesperson rolls her eyes, sighs and answers, "Sir, Divorced Barbie comes with: Ken's Car, Ken's House, Ken's Boat, Ken's Furniture, Ken's Computer, one of Ken's Friends, and a key chain made with Ken's balls."


Thursday, November 20, 2008

Why Having An Agent Is A Good Thing

There are some writers out there who believe that they don't need an agent. And, in my opinion, if they're going to stay strictly in the e-pubbing field, they might very well be right. (Although they do need someone else--someone who's been there, done that--to look over their contracts before they sign them. Even e-pub contracts have legalese and confusing verbiage.)


What if you've set your sights on print publication? What if you're looking toward New York?

It's my observation--and belief--that an agent is not just someone who vets your contracts for you. S/he is not just someone who gets you a solid advance for your first novel. H/she is your partner--someone who will help you think about what your strengths are as a writer, and how to develop those strengths moving forward. How to write the best books you can.

On top of that, a successful, experienced agent (and hopefully that's the kind you're looking for/dealing with) knows the market and has the right contacts in the industry.

But it is true, too, that a bad agent is worse than no agent. So make sure you've done your research and make a wise selection.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Tipsy Tuesday

I'm about a week late in passing this info on, but I guess that's what happens when I only do tips once every seven days...

Amazon has announced the Second Annual Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Competition--a contest intended to identify the "next great novel."

Here's how the contest works:

Entries of unpublished, English-language, fiction manuscripts will be accepted from February 2, 2009 until February 8, 2009 or until 10,000 entries have been received, whichever comes first. The contest consists of four judging phases by expert reviewers, publishing professionals, and customers.

Initial Round: Expert reviewers from Amazon will select 2,000 submissions from the 10,000 initial entries based each novel's "pitch." (So you really need to know how to write a gonga pitch...) The 2,000 entries will then be rated and given two excerpt reviews from Amazon Editors and Amazon Vine Reviewers.

Quarterfinals: Excerpts of the 500 are displayed on along with the reviews from the previous judging round. Publisher's Weekly will read, rate, and review the 500 remaining full manuscripts.

Semifinals: Penguin Group (USA) will read and rank the 100 semifinalists, taking into consideration the reviews from the two previous judging rounds.

Finals: The three remaining manuscripts will be reviewed by industry experts, including authors Sue Monk Kidd and Sue Grafton. customers will select the Grand Prize Winner, who will be announced on May 22, 2009.

So, gentlemen (and ladies), start your engines. For more information, go here.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Man Meat Monday

What is it about this picture that just makes me go guh?

Friday, November 14, 2008

Friday Funny

Got this from my Uncle O.

LOLLOL. How true!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Release Dates

January 1, 2009
Available at, and bookstores near you!

It takes a lot to ruffle Taite Gibson, investigator with the Pima County Attorney's Office. But the enormous, snarling werewolf that's stalking her through the streets of Tucson? Yeah, that oughta do it. Those terrifying attacks convince Taite to seek out Ryder Merrick, a reclusive British horror writer reputed to know everything about werewolves, including how to kill them. Turns out he also knows how to leave her shaking with desire...

On his remote private island, Ryder can live safely with the beast inside him, unable to harm others or himself. Then Taite arrives, her lush, sweet scent and gorgeous curves tempting him to give in to every wicked hunger. And as a full moon rises, the only way to keep Taite safe from the evil that's followed her here is to convince her to trust in an attraction that's deeply dangerous, and wilder than she ever guessed…

January 2, 2009
Available at Ellora's Cave

Talon, an Angel of Retribution, is sent to find and either return a repentant leader of the Brotherhood of the Red Claw--an angel who was both friend and mentor--or pronounce judgment and kill him. Along the way he must fight off gargoyles and protect the human female they've targeted.

Raegan Stark, a no-nonsense homicide detective, is stunned to find out that angels are real. As well as arrogant, bad-tempered and sexy as hell. She has to learn to hold her own against this very hot angel while staying one step ahead of their enemies.

Talon finds something he never thought he would--love. And Raegan finds out how bad an angel can be, and just how good bad is...

March 6, 2009
Available at Ellora's Cave

Angelique Chadbourne had been trapped for 10 years in a loveless marriage while her wastrel husband chased after prostitutes in the East End of London. Now, in 1888--two years after his murder--she has ended her period of mourning and is ready to live life on her own terms. And a big part of that is learning what passion is all about. For that, she needs Harry Atherton, the Duke of Sexton or, as he is notoriously known in upper society, the Duke of Sex.

Harry has always had his eye on Angel, thinking her to be the perfect woman to be his wife. She's beautiful, gracious and intelligent--just the sort who would fit in his household and provide him with an impeccable hostess. To find out she also has hidden passions she wishes to pursue is the sugar in his tea. He's never been one to let an opportunity pass him by, and he's not about to start now.

Oral sex, anal sex and a menage e trois round out Angel's education, but there's evil threatening her. Jack the Ripper is in their midst and it's only a matter of time before he strikes again.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Veteran's Day

I'm forgoing Tipsy Tuesday today to say Thank You! to all our veterans. I'm able to enjoy a multitude of freedoms because of the men and women who have served our country so selflessly. So...

Thank you!!

(Well, come on. What else did you expect from me? I am serious in my sincere gratitude. I just can't pass up an opportunity to post a picture of a hot guy.)

Monday, November 10, 2008

Man Meat Monday

Look at the width of this guy's pecs. Growwwwwwf!

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Love Romances Cafe Chat

I'm chatting at Love Romances Cafe today from noon to six p.m. EST. If you'd like a chance to win an Advanced Readers Copy (ARC) of my upcoming Brava novel DARING THE MOON, come on over and play with me!

Friday, November 07, 2008

Friday Funny

If you've been reading my blog long enough (or if this is your first visit here you're about to find out) you'll know I've been in the Human Resources field for a long time. Colleen Love sent me this via email and I just had to share:


Too hoom it mae cunsern,

I waunt to apply for the job what I saw in the paper. I can Type realee quik wit one finggar and do sum a counting....

I think I am good on the phone and I do no I am a pepole person, Pepole really seam to respond to me well. Certain men and all the ladies.

I no my spelling is not to good but find that I offen get a job thru my persinalety.

My salerery is open so we can discus wat jou want to pay me and what you think that I am werth. I can start emeditely.

Thank you in advanse fore yore anser.

hopifuly yore best aplicant so farr.


BRYAN nickname Beefy

PS: Because my resimay is a bit short - below is pickture of me

Employer's response:

Dear Beefy - I mean Bryan ,

It's OK honey, we have SPELL CHECK!!!

See you Monday.

LOLLOL I would sooooo want to respond that way. (Thanks again, Colleen!!)

Thursday, November 06, 2008


DRAGONHEAT remained the #1 best seller at Amber Heat for the month of October! W00t!

To read an excerpt or buy, click here.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Tipsy Tuesday

I'm in the process of reading Stephen King's non-fiction look at the horror industry, Danse Macabre. It's insightful and full of dry humor. And has some darn good tips.

Here's what I've gleaned so far:

"What separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work and study, a constant process of honing."

"Discipline and constant work are the whetstones upon which the dull knife of talent is honed until it becomes sharp enough, hopefully, to cut through even the toughest meat and gristle. No writer, painter, or actor--no artist--is ever handed a sharp knife (although a few people are handed almighty big ones; the name we give to the artist with the big knife is "genius"), and we hone with varying degrees of zeal and aptitude."

"To be successful, the artist in any field has to be in the right place at the right time. The right time is in the lap of the gods, but any mother's son or daughter can work his/her way to the right place and wait."

"Refining talent is merely a matter of exercise. If you work out with weights for 15 minutes a day over the course of ten years, you're gonna get muscles. If you write for an hour and a half a day for ten years, you're gonna turn into a good writer. But, I hasten to add, only if you have the talent there to begin with."

"Whenever I run into someone who expresses a feeling along the lines of "I don't read fantasy, or go to any of those movies; none of it's real," I feel a kind of sympathy. They simply can't lift the weight of fantasy. The muscles of the imagination have grown too weak."

Good stuff, eh? And I'm not even halfway through yet...

Monday, November 03, 2008

Man Meat Monday

I love the lighting on this black and white pic, the way it makes the shadows play on his body.

Yeah, that's it. Has nothing to do with the fact that he's nekkid...

Saturday, November 01, 2008


Got this from my Uncle O in an email--while it's not something he did, I can very well see him doing something like this...

Yesterday I was at my local WalMart store buying a large bag of Purina dog chow for my loyal pet, Peaches, the Wonder Dog and was in the checkout line when woman behind me asked if I had a dog.

What did she think I had, an elephant? So since I'm retired and have little to do, on impulse I told her that no, I didn't have a dog, I was starting the Purina Diet again. I added that I probably shouldn't, because I ended up in the hospital last time, but that I'd lost 50 pounds before I awakened in an intensive care ward with tubes coming out of most of my orifices and IVs in both arms.

I told her that it was essentially a perfect diet. And that the way that it works is to load your pants pockets with Purina nuggets and simply eat one or two every time you feel hungry. The food is nutritionally complete so it works well and I was going to try it again. (I have to mention here that practically everyone in line was now enthralled with my story.)

Horrified, she asked if I ended up in intensive care because the dog food poisoned me. I told her no, I stepped off a curb to sniff an Irish Setter's ass and a car hit us both.

I thought the guy behind her was going to have a heart attack he was laughing so hard. WalMart won't let me shop there anymore.

Better watch what you ask retired people. They have all the time in the world to think of crazy things to say.

-- Thomas D. Blackwell, Jr.