Monday, December 28, 2009

Happy New Year

Happy New Year


I'm taking the week off from the blog. See y'all on the flip side!

Have a safe and happy New Year!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Friday Funny--A Day Early

Dementia Test


Below are four (4) questions and a bonus question to test your perception, reasoning and the quickness of your logical processing. They are stated simply so you should try to answer them instantly. To assure the accuracy of the results, you should not take your time , but instead, answer each of them immediately... then move on to the next question.

Ready?


Let's find out just how clever you really are....


Question: You are a participant in a race. You overtake the second person. What position are you in?








Answer : If you answered that you are first, then you are absolutely WRONG! If you over take the second person and you take his place, YOU are in second place!


Try not to screw up next time. Now answer the second question, but don't take as much time as you took for the first question, OK?


Second Question : If you overtake the last person, then you are...?








Answer : If you answered that you are second to last, then you are.... WRONG again. Tell me, Sunshine, how can you overtake the LAST person??


You're not very good at this, are you?

Third Question: Very tricky arithmetic! Note: This must be done in your head only. Do NOT use paper and pencil or a calculator.

Take 1000 and add 40 to it. Now add another 1000 Now add 30 . Add another 1000 . Now add 20 . Now add another 1000 . Now add 10 . What is the total?

Scroll down for the correct answer...






Did you get 5000?


The correct answer is actually 4100.

If you don't believe it, check it with a calculator! Today is definitely not your day, is it? Maybe you'll get the last question right... Maybe....


Fourth Question: Mary's father has five daughters: 1. Nana, 2.. Nene, 3. Nini, 4. Nono, and ??? What is the name of the fifth daughter?





Did you answer Nunu? NO! Of course it isn't. Her name is Mary, you retard! Read the question again!




Okay, now the bonus round, i.e., a final chance to redeem yourself:





A mute person goes into a shop and wants to buy a toothbrush. By imitating the action of brushing his teeth he successfully expresses himself to the shopkeeper and the purchase is done. Next, a blind man comes into the shop who wants to buy a pair of sunglasses; how does HE indicate what he wants?






It's really very simple. He opens his mouth and ask for it...



Does your employer actually pay you to think?? If so, do NOT let them see your answers for this test!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

TIpsy Tuesday

Today's tip:


You can never have too many sexy Santas!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Man Meat Monday


Santa, baby!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Friday Funny

In the holiday spirit...


ONIONS & CHRISTMAS TREES


A family is at the dinner table. The son asks his father, "Dad, how many kinds of boobs are there?"

The father, surprised, answers, "Well, son, there are three kinds of boobs: in her 20's, a woman's are like melons, round and firm. In her 30's to 40's, they are like pears, still nice but hanging a bit. After 50, they are like onions."

"Onions?"

"Yes, you see them and they make you cry."

This infuriated his wife and daughter so the daughter said, "Mom, how many kinds of 'willies' are there?"

The mother, surprised, smiles and answers, "Well dear, a man goes through three phases. In his 20's, his willy is like an oak tree, mighty and hard. In his 30's and 40's, it is like a birch, flexible but reliable. After 50, it is like a Christmas tree."

"A Christmas tree?"

"Yes--the root's dead and the balls are just for decoration."




Ho-ho-ho!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Another Cutie

Look at this little guy:




Isn't he just too cute?!?

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

Just one thought for today. It's a quote from Danse Macabre, a non-fiction book by Stephen King:

"I think that writers are made, not born or created out of dreams or childhood trauma--that becoming a writer (or a painter, actor, director, dancer, and so on) is a direct result of conscious will. Of course there has to be some talent involved, but talent is a dreadfully cheap commodity, cheaper than table salt. What separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work and study; a constant process of honing. Talent is a dull knife that will cut nothing unless it is wielded with great force--a force so great that the knife is not really cutting at all but bludgeoning and breaking (and after two or three of these gargantuan swipes it may succeed in breaking itself)... 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. I'm suggesting that, 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."

Monday, December 14, 2009

Man Meat Monday

How about a hot Latino to get your week off to a good start?

Friday, December 11, 2009

Friday Funny

Wife from Hell



A police officer pulls over a speeding car. The officer says, "I clocked you at 80 miles per hour, sir."

The driver says, "Gee, officer, I had it on cruise control at 60; perhaps your radar gun needs calibrating."

Not looking up from her knitting the wife says: "Now don't be silly, dear--you know that this car doesn't have cruise control."

As the officer writes out the ticket, the driver looks over at his wife and growls, "Can't you please keep your mouth shut for once?"

The wife smiles demurely and says, "Well dear you should be thankful your radar detector went off when it did or your speed would have been higher."

As the officer makes out the second ticket for the illegal radar detector unit, the man glowers at his wife and says through clenched teeth, "Woman, can't you keep your mouth shut?"

The officer frowns and says, "And I notice that you're not wearing your seat belt, sir. That's an automatic $75 fine."

The driver says, "Yeah, well, you see, officer, I had it on, but I took it off when you pulled me over so that I could get my license out of my back pocket."

The wife says, "Now, dear, you know very well that you didn't have your seat belt on. You never wear your seat belt when you're driving."

And as the police officer is writing out the third ticket, the driver turns to his wife and barks, "WOULD YOU SHUT UP?!"

The officer looks over at the woman and asks, "Does your husband always talk to you this way, Ma'am?"

(I love this part)

"Only when he's been drinking..."



LOL! Happy Friday!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Too Cute!

This little guy is just too adorable! I dare you to watch this and feel bad. About anything.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

Music can be a writer's muse. It can help focus your thoughts and aid in getting into a good writing groove. And what works may depend on the type of scene you're writing. Most of the time, if I'm listening to music while writing, it's light classical--nothing too "loud" that will break my concentration. It's just enough to fill the silence.

But sometimes, especially for darker scenes, I find Evanescence works great for me--even with lyrics, which in many cases can prove to be too distracting. There's just something about their sound/style that allows the writing to flow.

Happy writing!

Monday, December 07, 2009

Man Meat Monday

All right, done with the faces (for now LOL). Let's get back to more serious man meat...


Friday, December 04, 2009

Friday Funny

Yesterday I went to the doctor for my yearly physical.

My blood pressure was high... My cholesterol was high.... I had gained some weight, and I didn't feel so hot.

My doctor said eating right doesn't have to be complicated, and it would solve my physical problems.

He said, "Just think in colors: Fill your plate with bright colors. Try some greens, oranges, reds, maybe something blue, etc."

So I went right home and ate an entire bowl of M&M's...


And sure enough, I felt better immediately.

I never KNEW eating right could be so easy.



LOL!

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Still So Much Vanity

I'm hearing some rumblings in the blogosphere that the only reason agents are up-in-arms over Harlequin Horizons (or I guess it's DellArte Press now?) is that they want to maintain the status quo and don't want writers discovering alternate methods of publishing. And that published authors don't want the competition and so they, too, are speaking out against this model.

WTF?!?

So I guess that's why three writers organizations--RWA, MWA and SFWA--also spoke out against it. It has nothing to do with the fact that all the money flows FROM the author TO the publisher, and NONE (or very little) will from from the publisher to the author.

I'm sitting here shaking my head. Really. I'm all for innovation in publishing. But not if I have to pay for it myself. I don't have that kind of money, or contacts. And if I can't get brick-and-mortar bookstores to shelve my book...well, I'm not gonna sell it out of the trunk of my car and then see only 50% of the royalties. AFTER I've also been told my vanity press book (Harlequin is NOT going into self-publishing, no matter that they keep calling it that.) MIGHT be picked up by the traditional side of the house, even though it wasn't good enough to publish there when I originally submitted it.

Harlequin's model is just wrong. For everyone except Harlequin (from a making-money perspective--it's not doing their rep any good, IMO).

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

"All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them." ~Walt Disney

"Empty pockets never held anyone back. Only empty heads and empty hearts can do that." ~Norman Vincent Peale

"Live out of your imagination, not your history." ~Stephen Covey

"The smarter the journalists are, the better off society is. For to a degree, people read the press to inform themselves-and the better the teacher, the better the student body." ~ Warren Buffet

"Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society." ~Mark Twain

"A word to the wise ain't necessary - it's the stupid ones that need the advice." ~Bill Cosby

Monday, November 30, 2009

Man Meat Monday

My last face pic, and I'd be remiss if I didn't post at least one of this guy:



And because I couldn't decide on just one...

Friday, November 27, 2009

Friday Funny

Life according to Garfield:


I'll rise, but I won't shine.

The most active thing about me is my imagination.

Anybody can exercise. But this kind of lethargy takes real discipline.

Eat every meal as though it were your last.

Good times are ahead. Or behind. Because they sure aren't here.

...diet is..."die" with a "t"!

I'm not overweight, I'm under-tall.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

I am thankful for my family. My friends. As much as I complain about it, I'm thankful to have a job that pays the bills, keeps a roof over my head and food on the table. I'm thankful for my agent and editor. I'm thankful for my readers. I'm thankful for the poor bird that gave his life so I can eat like a little piggy today. (Boy, I bet he wishes he'd been born a pig, eh?)


Thanksgiving

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

40 years ago in the June 1969 issue, The Writer posted these "don'ts":

Never write for money. The work itself should be your only consideration while you write.

Never write for a "market." "Market" means "formula." Sneaky little hesitations creep in.

Never write for an audience less--or more--intelligent than you think you are. If you do, you'll write down to it or up to it. You are your audience.

Never write out of a total preconception of what you mean. It takes every word, every idea, every metaphor, one after the other, to come to that outcome or meaning, and unless it is predigested stuff--in other words, propaganda--you don't know it yet.

Never be grateful, loyal or vindictive in your writing. The truth won't be found if any of these emotions bend your literary intent. Write fantasy, farce, science fiction or whatever, as long as you are discovering--really discovering--which means that you are receptive to the ideas you come upon.


So, you tell me. Are these still relevant, 40 years later?

Monday, November 23, 2009

Man Meat Monday

Sorry I'm a little late with this today. Slept in and had to dash off to work this morning.



Hopefully he was worth the wait...

Friday, November 20, 2009

Friday Funny

How to Give a Cat a Tablet

Pick the cat up and cradle in the crook of your left arm as if holding a baby. Position right forefinger and thumb on either side of cat's mouth and gently apply pressure to cheeks while holding pill in right hand. As cat opens mouth pop pill into it, allow cat to close mouth and swallow.

Retrieve pill from floor and cat from behind the sofa. Cradle cat in left arm and repeat process.

Retrieve cat from bedroom and throw soggy pill away. Take new pill from foil wrap, cradle cat in left arm holding rear paws tightly with left hand. Force jaws open and push pill to back of mouth with right forefinger. Hold mouth shut for a count of ten.

Retrieve pill from goldfish bowl and cat from top of wardrobe. Call partner in from garden. Kneel on floor with cat wedged firmly between knees, hold front and rear paws. Ignore low growls emitted by cat. Get partner to hold head firmly with one hand while forcing wooden ruler into mouth. Drop pill down ruler and rub cat's throat vigorously.

Retrieve cat from curtain rail, get another pill from the foil wrap. Make note to buy a new ruler and repair curtains. Carefully sweep shattered figurines from hearth and set to one side for gluing later. Wrap cat in large towel and get partner to lie on cat with head just visible from below armpit. Put pill in end of drinking straw, force cat's mouth open with pencil and blow down drinking straw.

Check label to make sure pills not harmful to humans, drink glass of water to take taste away. Apply plaster to partners forearm and remove blood from carpet with cold water and soap. Retrieve cat from neighbor's shed and get another pill. Place cat in cupboard and close door onto neck to leave head showing. Force mouth open with dessert spoon and flick pill down throat with elastic band.

Fetch screwdriver from garage and put door back on hinges. Apply cold compress to cheek and check records for date of last tetanus jab. Throw t-shirt away and fetch new one from bedroom. Ring fire brigade to retrieve cat from tree across the road and apologize to neighbor who crashed into fence while swerving to avoid the cat. Take last pill from foil wrap. Tie cats front paws to rear paws with garden twine and bind tightly to leg of dining table, find heavy duty pruning gloves from shed and pry cat's mouth open with a small spanner. Push pill into mouth followed by a large piece of fillet steak. Hold head vertically and pour a pint of water down throat to wash down pill.

Get partner to drive you to the Emergency Room and sit quietly while doctor stitches fingers and forearms and removes pill remnants from right eye. Call at furniture shop on way home to order new table.

Arrange for ASPCA to collect cat. Ring local pet shop to see if they have any hamsters.

How to Give a Dog a Tablet

Throw it in the air.

Say "Catch."

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Harlequin Vanity

When Harlequin recently announced they were opening an e-pub only division, I was cautiously optimistic, even if they've indicated they'll only pay royalties twice a year. (Most e-pubs pay at least quarterly. I don't know anyone who can budget effectively with just 2 paychecks a year...) However, and it's a big however, Harlequin has also just announced their partnership with Author Solutions, a vanity press. EVERY author whose manuscript Harlequin rejects will receive a letter pointing them toward Harlequin Horizons, a vanity press (i.e., self-publishing). According to the press release, it's "an accessible opportunity for emerging authors to bring themselves to the attention of the reading public."

Can I just say WTF?!? I have been telling everyone I know that in this business the money should flow TO the author, not FROM the author. Yet here's Harlequin, the largest publisher of women's fiction, with their sharp spoons out, ready to dig into the unwary and desperate-to-be-published author. And it's more than just "suggesting" Horizons to rejected authors. They're also holding out this carrot: "Harlequin will monitor sales of books published through the self-publisher for possible pickup by its traditional imprints."

So, not good enough to be published with the Harlequin logo on the spine of your book? Just wait and hope. Spend the money and maybe, just maybe, someone at Harlequin will take notice and pick up your book for one of their traditional imprints.

On their website they tout that as a self-published author you retain the rights to your book, unlike the traditional publishing route. But along with retaining your rights to the book, you also are the one responsible for marketing, distribution and sales of your book. Then start piling on the fees. Want an ISBN assigned to your book? Be ready to fork over $2300. (Now, granted, there are other "perks" included in this price--the lowest one, by the way--25 author copies of the book, formatting in e-book format, U.S. copyright registration, and author website set-up, to name a few.) But my point is, that's $2300 the AUTHOR has to pay out, upfront, with no guarantee of future income, let alone a guarantee he/she will recoup their investment.

It's just wrong. It's predatory publishing at it's finest. Or worst. I'm disappointed and disheartened that Harlequin chose to go this route. And not that it probably makes any difference to them (this move by Harlequin is about the bottom line, pure and simple), but Romance Writers of America (RWA) has quickly and bravely taken the stance that Harlequin Enterprises no longer qualifies as an eligible publisher. That means nothing to most of the book-buying world, but it's a huge thing within the romance writing industry.

Now I'm not naive here. I understand that publishing is a business, and publishers are here to make their shareholders money. But that they're now willing to do it from the hide of the author is what I have a problem with.


Edited to Add (6:11 p.m.): Apparently Harlequin has not been unaware of the furor this has caused in the author community. Check out Kristin Nelson's blog today, in which Harlequin sent her an email that states, in part:

Most importantly, however, we have heard the concerns that you, our authors, have expressed regarding the potential confusion between this venture and our traditional business. As such, we are changing the name of the self-publishing company from Harlequin Horizons to a designation that will not refer to Harlequin in any way. We will initiate this process immediately. We hope this allays the fears many of you have communicated to us.

I'm very glad to hear this, and surprised that they seem so, well, surprised at the outrage this caused. (And I'm surprised that they seem so very surprised that RWA took the stance it did to remove them as a recognized publisher. I mean, come on. If every single rejection letter is going to point authors to your vanity press, what did you expect?!?) The letter states also that Harlequin's intention is to provide authors access to publishing opportunities, traditional or otherwise. Which I have no problem with. But when the "otherwise" is vanity publishing?

No freaking way.

ETA (6:48 p.m.): Mystery Writers of America has also put Harlequin on notice that they are "breaking the rules" of being an eligible publisher with their organization.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

Be aware that even "natural" supplements can have side effects. My mom has been taking red yeast rice now for a couple of years to control her cholesterol (instead of taking a prescription statin, which can have rather serious side effects including liver damage). I've been on statin medication for years and recently started having low back pain due, I think, to the statin. (Muscle pain is one of the side effects and, remember, your heart is a muscle.) I stopped taking it and switched to red yeast rice.

The first pill I took I ended up with a reaction I thought was just coincidence. (That was a few weeks ago.) But last night I took another one, and same reaction. Hmm. Not a coinkidink, I'm thinking. (Let's just say that when the label says "if you experience gastrointestinal discomfort" to discontinue use...yeah. No kidding. Discomfort isn't the word I'd use.) So, after spending most of the night in the bathroom (or at least not very far away and, therefore, not sleeping too well), I'm here to say...

Even "natural" supplements can have side effects. So be careful.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Man Meat Monday


Talk about purty...

Friday, November 13, 2009

Friday Funny

More Maxine...
1. Jim Baker and Jimmy Swaggert have written an impressive new book. It's called 'Ministers Do More Than Lay People'

2. The difference between the Pope and your boss, the Pope only expects you to kiss his ring.

3. My mind works like lightning--one brilliant flash and it is gone.

4. The only time the world beats a path to your door is if you're in the bathroom.

5. I hate sex in the movies. Tried it once. The seat folded up, the drink spilled and the ice, well, it really chilled the mood.

6. It used to be only death and taxes. Now, of course, there's shipping and handling, too.

7. A husband is someone who, after taking the trash out, gives the impression that he just cleaned the whole house.

8. My next house will have no kitchen - just vending machines and a large trash can.

9. A blonde said, 'I was worried that my mechanic might try to rip me off. I was relieved when he told me all I needed was turn signal fluid.'

10. Definition of a teenager? God's punishment....for enjoying sex.

11. As you slide down the banister of life, may the splinters never point the wrong way...

Thursday, November 12, 2009

More Good Stuff About Queries

Agent Nathan Bransford had an excellent post on Tuesday about query letters, and just what things are important in them. I've said this before and I'll say it again--If you're a writer, you should be reading Nathan's blog on a regular basis. He's got good stuff over there.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

Harlequin has announced the launch of Carina Press(TM), a digital-only publishing house that will operate independently of their traditional publishing businesses. Carina Press will sell its e-books direct-to-consumers via their website.

Angela James, previously with Ellora's Cave and former Executive Editor at Samhain, will be the new venture's Executive Editor, so they're starting out with great experience in their editing area.

Both the contract and distribution channels are different from Harlequin's other divisions, in that:

  1. Books will be sold direct to consumers through the Carina Press website as well as third party distribution on other websites.
  2. There is no guaranteed series distribution (no standing order, no direct mail, no overseas translation markets).
  3. The Carina Press contract does not include an advance, and authors are compensated with a higher royalty, though at this point they're not saying what that "higher" royalty will be. (I'll be very disappointed if they come out with a royalty that's less than what most other electronic publishers are paying. That won't bode well for authors in the long run.)
Harlequin celebrated its 60th anniversary this year and is a powerhouse in romance fiction publishing. They're well on their way to dominating not just the women's fiction market, but other genres as well.

You can read the press release here.

Monday, November 09, 2009

Man Meat Monday

This is one of my favorites.



*sigh*

Friday, November 06, 2009

Friday Funny


LOL!!

Thursday, November 05, 2009

National Bookstore Day - November 7th

With the advent of technology, bookstores find themselves battling the internet and cyber-book forces for customers. Publishers Weekly recognized the importance of garnering support for bookstores, and National Bookstore Day was born. “We want to celebrate the vibrant culture of bookstores,” Publishers Weekly publisher Ron Shank noted, “increase store traffic, sell more books, and create an enjoyable customer experience that will lead to return visits. Every store is doing this already, but we think there may be an opportunity to get more customer attention if many across the country band together on the same day.”

This year is the first celebration of National Bookstore Day, and in order to make it a success, bookstores nationwide need your support! The concept of National Bookstore Day is simple. To do your part, all you have to do is visit your local bookstore this Saturday. (And it wouldn't hurt if you at least buy one book!)

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

This post is the last part of how reading affects your brain:

Not only does it make you smarter and boosts knowledge in general, reading protects your mind as well. When comparing college students to senior citizens, college students beat their elders when it comes to memory and tasks that involve logic and deductive reasoning. Except when the study was controlled for the amount of reading those people did. There, the results pointed toward the notion that reading a lot can compensate for the wear and tear time puts on the mind.

It's eye-opening--especially for parents of little ones just learning to read--to grasp how big a difference reading can make, and how important it is for children to have early success and positive feelings about reading.

Monday, November 02, 2009

Man Meat Monday


Bed head and a cleft chin. (You sense a theme with me, maybe? Cleft chins rule! LOL)

Friday, October 30, 2009

Friday Funny

HELL EXPLAINED

(By a chemistry student)

The following is an actual question given on a University of Arizona chemistry mid term, and an actual answer turned in by a student.

The answer by one student was so "profound" that the professor shared it with colleagues, via the Internet, which is, of course, why we now have the pleasure of enjoying it as well:

Bonus Question: Is Hell exothermic (gives off heat) or endothermic (absorbs
heat)?

Most of the students wrote proofs of their beliefs using Boyle's Law (gas cools when it expands and heats when it is compressed) or some variant.

One student, however, wrote the following:

First, we need to know how the mass of Hell is changing in time. So we need to know the rate at which souls are moving into Hell and the rate at which they are leaving, which is unlikely. I think that we can safely assume that once a soul gets to Hell, it will not leave. There fore, no souls are leaving. As for how many souls are entering Hell, let's look at the different religions that exist in the world today.

Most of these religions state that if you are not a member of their religion, you will go to Hell. Since there is more than one of these religions and since people do not belong to more than one religion, we can project that all souls go to Hell. With birth and death rates as they are, we can expect the number of souls in Hell to increase exponentially. Now, we look at the rate of change of the volume in Hell because Boyle's Law states that in order for the temperature and pressure in Hell to stay the same, the volume of Hell has to expand proportionately as souls are added.

This gives two possibilities:
1. If Hell is expanding at a slower rate than the rate at which souls enter Hell, then the temperature and pressure in Hell will increase until all Hell breaks loose.
2. If Hell is expanding at a rate faster than the increase of souls in Hell, then the temperature and pressure will drop until Hell freezes over.

So which is it?

If we accept the postulate given to me by Teresa during my Freshman year that, "It will be a cold day in Hell before I sleep with you," and take into account the fact that I slept with her last night, then number two must be true, and thus I am sure that Hell is exothermic and has already frozen over. The corollary of this theory is that since Hell has frozen over, it follows that it is not accepting any more souls and is therefore, extinct...leaving only Heaven, thereby proving the existence of a
divine being which explains why, last night, Teresa kept shouting "Oh, my God."

THIS STUDENT RECEIVED AN A+.



LOL I really doubt the validity of this as a true event; however, it is darned funny.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

New Review for BELONG TO THE NIGHT


From Romance Reviews Today: "A sexy witch and a detective who wants to be in charge make for great reading in City of the Dead. Sherrill Quinn turns up the heat in ways that will have your eyes popping out of your head. Anything goes between Dori and Jake. Their love scenes simmer in ways where you will need a fan to cool off... Three hot and heavy sexed up stories make for great reading in Belong to the Night. Whether you are in the mood for a small town overrun by sexy powerful witches, former lovers who heat up the night with their supernatural powers, or a steamy New Orleans setting where magic and mischief bring out the laughs, this anthology is one to keep on your reading radar."


You can read the full review here.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

How much you read has a big impact on how much you know (and, by extension, how smart you are.) According to the study "What Reading Does for the Mind" by Anne E. Cunningham (which we began looking at last week), people who read are more likely to know about how carburetors work, what vitamin is found in concentrated forms in citrus fruits, and other general facts. Regardless of general abilities, people who read more know more.

Equally important, they are less likely to be sucked in by misinformation. In an interesting test, a group of 268 college students was asked how many of the world's people are Muslim vs. Jewish. Almost 70% of these smart college kids thought Jewish people outnumbered Muslims. Actually, there are about 20 million Jewish people and more than 800 million Muslims.

Cunningham found that the more TV participants watched, the more likely they were to get that question wrong. But the more they read, the more likely they were to get the answer right. General intellectual ability didn't matter--the amount of reading versus television consumption did.

I guess there is truth in advertising when Hulu had Alec Baldwin telling us they were turning our brains to mushy mush! LOL

Monday, October 26, 2009

Man Meat Monday


Dark hair, dark eyes, cleft chin... grrrrrrowf!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Friday Funny

Got this in an email from my cousin P:

Last night my sister and I were sitting in the den and I said to her, "I never want to live in a vegetative state, dependent on some machine and fluids from a bottle to keep me alive. That would be no quality of life at all... If that ever happens, just pull the plug."

So she got up, unplugged the computer, and threw out my wine.

She's such a bitch.



LOLLOL

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Book Nook

Barnes & Noble has rolled out their challenge to Amazon in the form of the Nook. With an additional memory card, the Nook can hold 17,500 books. Can you imagine what a home library would look like with 17,500 paper books?!? (My dream library, for one, with floor to ceiling built-in bookshelves crammed full of lovely, lovely books. *sigh* LOL) According to B&N, if you turn off the wireless 3G connection, you won't have to recharge the Nook for 9 days. You could vacation without lugging around the charger.

One of the most interesting features to me is the lending capacity. With a paper book, you can loan it to a friend, let them read it, badger them until they remember to return it to you, then you can read and enjoy it again. Well, you can do the same thing with the Nook--loan one of your books to a friend. At this point you can only lend each book one time, but that's better than nothing, right? It makes me wonder if it might cut down on pirating to a certain extent.

The Nook will be available at the end of November (just in time for Christmas! Yay!) You can check it out here.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

You probably know that reading makes you smarter, and the more reading you do, the better. In a paper called "What Reading Does for the Mind," Anne E. Cunningham, associate professor of cognition and development at the University of California, Berkeley, makes the case that reading:

  • increases vocabulary more than talking or direct teaching;
  • substantially boosts general knowledge while decreasing the likelihood that misinformation will be absorbed; and
  • helps keep our memory and reasoning abilities intact as we age.
Here's what I find most interesting: Cunningham's paper refers to studies that ranked the frequency of 86,741 English words. (A word's frequency is how often it appears in speech or writing. In speech, the average word frequency is 400--meaning, when we talk, we're likely to use a relatively small set of frequently occurring words.)

However, words in children's book--which people think of as being simple little things, right?--have an average frequency of 627. Which means that the language in a children's book is likely to be more sophisticated than your average conversation.

Interested yet?

Between fourth and sixth grades, kids are likely to have encountered all but rare words--those ranked below 10,000 on the list. (And I wonder what words those are...) The only way for kids to learn those rare words is to encounter them, and they're far more likely to do that on the printed page.

Check these stats: In a newspaper, 68.3 words per 1,000 are considered "rare." In children's literature, 30.9 per 1,000 are rare. On prime-time TV, it sinks to 22.7. (Hulu is right--TV is turning our brains into mushy-mush! LOL) In conversations between college graduates, it's even lower--17.3 words per 1,000. So even if a child is talking with well-educated parents, his/her best shot at expanding his/her vocabulary is by reading.

Next Tuesday we'll pick up with the second bulleted point: how reading boosts general knowledge.



Now, on to really important matters, the winner of my extra Heat Wave book...

Wait for it...


...


The winner is...


Colleen!

Colleen, please email me with your snail mail addy and I'll get the book and some other goodies out to you as soon as possible.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Man Meat Monday


Ain't he purty?

Friday, October 16, 2009

Friday Funny

There's a new DexKnows commercial that just cracks me up. I couldn't embed the video here, so click this link to get to it on YouTube.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

New Review for SEDUCING THE MOON


4 1/2 Hearts from Love Romances and More:

"Seducing the Moon is a delightful story that will have you running to Ms. Quinn’s website for more details on the next books in the series. The characters are well rounded, the story keeps you entertained and man the sex scenes between Declan and Pelicia are scorching hot. I almost was afraid it would set the couch on fire. With the right touch of mysticism, mystery and simmering sexual tension, the reader is introduced into a world of unique wolf shifters that will capture your heart. I am highly looking forward to more from Ms. Quinn and hope you race to grab Seducing the Moon as soon as you can. It will surely keep you reading till the wee hours of the morning and longing for more. This is one I will reread again once I get the first book, Daring the Moon."

You can read the full review here. For an excerpt or to buy, go here.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

New Free Story On Its Way

By next Wednesday I should be ready to post the first installment of a new blog story. This one is set in Victorian London and deals with my fascination with one of the most notorious serial killers of all time--Jack the Ripper.

Stay tuned!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

Description in your novel helps bring the story to life for your readers. The more detail you can give on the world you've created, the easier it is for readers to immerse themselves in that world.

One way to do that is through color. There are so many different shades--giving your readers the best description goes a long way in painting a mental picture for them. Are your hero's eyes blue? What shade? Cobalt blue is different from ice blue, yet each conjures an image of a specific color.

So paint your canvas with words, and watch your story come to life.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Man Meat Monday


Is that the face of a hero, or what?

Friday, October 09, 2009

In A Giveaway Mood

I had a lot of fun over on Cynthia Eden's blog yesterday--thanks again to everyone who stopped by! I had so much fun, in fact, that I'm still in the mood to give stuff away. Not just any stuff, though--a copy of Richard Castle's book Heat Wave. (Somehow I had an itchy trigger finger and ended up ordering two. My loss, one lucky reader's gain. And I had to laugh when I saw the "author" photo on the back--Nathan Fillion--and cover blurbs by real life authors Michael Connelly and Stephen J. Cannell, who both have guest starred as themselves on the show.)


If you haven't read the first 9 chapters and would like to, ABC has them posted here.



Anyone who comments on my blog this week and next (and they have to be appropriate post-related comments, folks--play fair) will be eligible to win. So stop in and have a brief chat with me on any of the topics I post each day. I'll announce the winner next Friday.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Movie Monsters

Join me over at Cynthia Eden's blog today for a discussion about movies and monsters, as well as a chance to win a copy of our shared anthology, Belong to the Night.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

More Man Meat


Very, very tired this morning. Wish I could just crawl back into bed.

Of course, if this was waiting for me, I'm sure there wouldn't be much sleep happening...

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

As tempting as it is to "write to trend" or even imitate an author you like, writers need to stay true to their own voice and style. If you try to write an erotic romance but you're not comfortable writing graphic sex scenes, it's going to show. If you try to write vampires but really don't "get" paranormals, it will be apparent you haven't really, er, sunk your teeth into it.

So write about things that interest you, not what the market seems to be interested in. Learn from your favorite authors--how they do what they do and why it works--but don't imitate anyone. Be true to yourself and develop your own style.

Monday, October 05, 2009

Man Meat Monday

I'm going to spend the next few Mondays on faces that have caught my attention. I hope you, ah, enjoy them, too.



Look at those gorgeous blue eyes! *sigh*

Friday, October 02, 2009

Friday Funny

Two men are walking their dogs (a doberman and a chihuahua) when they say to each other "I'm thirsty." They see a nearby bar and walk up to it.

Unfortunately, there was a sign on the door that said NO DOGS. They thought for awhile to try to figure out what they should do with no luck. Suddenly, the man with the doberman said, "I have an idea! Do what I do."

The man put on his sunglasses, walked up to the door and tried to get in, but a big muscular man stopped him. "Where do you think you're going?" asked the big man.

"This is my seeing-eye dog."

"Alrighty mister, go right in," said the big man. The doberman man walked in.

The second man slipped his sunglasses on and did the same as the first man.

"Where are you going?" asked the big man.

"I'm going into the bar, this is my seeing-eye dog," he said.

"A chihuahua?" asked the big man with suspicion.

The other man, playing his part, yelled, "They gave me a chihuahua!?"


LOL

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

In Memory of Kate Duffy


I am saddened to report, as many people are already aware, that Kate Duffy, editor extraordinaire, passed away Sunday night. Kate was my editor and cheerleader, and boy am I gonna miss her. I'll miss her enthusiasm and sense of humor. I'm sorry I didn't get to work with her longer. She was a strong proponent of romance--there's going to be a huge hole in this industry with her gone.

Smart Bitches has a very moving post about her here.

See you later, Kate. Rest easy now.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Man Meat Monday

Double trouble...



Now that's my kind of trouble!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Friday Funny

A man checks into a hotel while on a business trip and was a bit lonely.

He thought of one of those girls you see advertised in phone booths when you're calling for a cab.

He popped into a phone booth in Albert Street near the hotel and found an ad for a girl calling herself Veronique, a lovely girl, bending over in the photo. She had all the right curves in all the right places, beautiful long wavy hair, long graceful legs... well, you get the picture. He copied the phone number and returned to his hotel.

When back in the room he figures, what the hell, give her a call.

"Hello." A woman's voice answers the phone.

God, she sounded sexy.

"Hi, I hear you give a great massage and I'd like you to come to my room and give me one. No, wait, I should be straight with you. I'm in town all alone and what I really want is sex. I want it hard, I want it hot, and I want it now. Bring implements, toys, rubber, leather, whips, everything you've got in your bag of tricks. Tie me up, cover me in chocolate syrup and whipped cream, anything you want! Now, how does that sound?"

She says, "That sounds fantastic, but you need to press 1 for an outside line."

It took three hours for him to get the courage to check out next morning.



LOLLOL

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Bollywood Movie

I watched my first Bollywood movie last night--Jodhaa Akbar. It was a really good film, though because I did see it with my critique partners, we couldn't help but pick at it a little and do our usual version of Mystery Science Theater 3000 on it. It's the first foreign movie I've watched, actually, so of course you have to have subtitles on. But I didn't find that to be too distracting, other than the fact that they kept putting commas in where they weren't supposed to be. But I guess that's the writer in me, to notice (and be bothered by) stuff like that.

And you know me. The lead actor was HAWT, so that made sitting through the movie, even if it had been bad, a worthwhile endeavor. LOL

But in all seriousness, it was entertaining. And the costumes...! Gorgeous.

Jodhaa Akbar. Rent it.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

I Love a Good Story

I am really enjoying the TV show Castle. I think even if Nathan Fillion weren't in the title role I'd still like the show. (Barring that whoever else was playing Richard Castle wasn't a total dweeb at the part...) I've also been reading the book written by Richard Castle that ABC is releasing later this month.

I've commented on the book previously. It has some things that make me, as a writer, cringe a little. Like when the POV character refers to herself as "the detective". Or when there's point of view confusion (for example, we're in Detective Heat's point of view and are told "her face was set in concentration". What, is she looking at herself in a mirror?). There have been some typos in the chapters I've read so far; typos I hope have been taken care of in the print copy.

But there's also some really clever writing going on. Really clever.

With the brush cut, she could picture the boy of him on a soccer field or lofting a stick in a hockey rink. But the hardness was what Pochenko was all about now, and whether it came from doing time in Russia or learning how not to do time, the boy was gone and all she saw in that room was what happens when you get very, very good at surviving very, very bad things.

And my personal favorite so far:

The sign said they were on the Cosmic Pathway, a 360-degree spiral walkway marking the timeline of the evolution of the universe in the length of a football field. Nikki Heat covered thirteen billion years at a personal best.

That is some good writing! You want to engage your readers, this is how you do it.

For whoever's interested, the first seven chapters of HeatWave by Richard Castle (copyrighted by ABC Studios) is available at ABC.com. The book goes on sale September 29th.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

Say no to negativity. We all experience rejection, and writers perhaps more than people in other occupations. But, as in other jobs, the things that don't work teach us as much, if not more, than the things that do work. And every failure is an opportunity to learn.

Take what's useful from the failure. Find the constructive critique beneath the rejection--it's one of the best ways to get past the rejection and move on. And to help you move on, have some sort of ritual. Other than curling up on the couch for a good cry...

Monday, September 21, 2009

Man Meat Monday

Another one of my favs:

Friday, September 18, 2009

Friday Funny

I'm not entirely sure why this commercial cracks me up, but every time I see it, when Erik Estrada says his last name with the Hispanic pronunciation (at the end of the commercial) it just tickles my funny bone. Check it out:


Thursday, September 17, 2009

Cover for TAMING THE MOON

Coming in March:


Animal attraction is only half of the problem…

Olivia Felan has a wild side, all right. Even ignoring the fact that she turns furry and feral once a month, her natural style is take-no-prisoners, full-speed-ahead, come-what-may. But when it comes to her little girl, she doesn’t take chances. So when a big bad werewolf alpha steals her daughter, Olivia will do whatever it takes to get her baby back. And in this case, that means killing Rory Sullivan.

The trouble is, killing him would mean wasting one sexy beast. Sully is all man, all cop, and as of late, half wolf. When he meets Olivia, Sully’s a little glad he stuck his nose into his friends’ business and came out with animal senses--until he gets a whiff of the chaos following her around. Now he has to decide whether he can’t take his eyes off Olivia because she’s too beautiful--or because she’s too dangerous…


Taming the Moon, book 3 in my Brava Moon series, available March 2010.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

More Man Meat


There's something evocative about this picture...

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

When writing technology/technological devices into your book, be sure you use up-to-date, accurate information, and either keep the technology references obscure enough to endure a while, or allow for it to become obsolete. Cell phones, GPS devices, computers, etc. change constantly, and what is state-of-the-art when you're writing your story might be outdated by the time the book hits the shelves.

And make sure that your technology fits your character. More and more people--especially those under 30--don't have land lines. They only use their cell phones. Keep that in mind as you're creating your characters.



On a sober note, RIP Patrick Swayze.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Man Meat Monday


A boy and his horse...

Friday, September 11, 2009

Friday Funny

This is almost certainly one of those urban legends, but it's just too darned funny and something I could see some guy doing, so...hope it gives you a laugh today.


Last weekend I saw something at Larry's Pistol & Pawn Shop that sparked my interest. The occasion was our 15th anniversary and I was looking for a little something extra for my wife Julie. What I came across was a 100,000-volt, pocket/purse-sized tazer.

The effects of the tazer were supposed to be short lived, with no long-term adverse affect on your assailant, allowing her adequate time to retreat to safety.

WAY TOO COOL! Long story short, I bought the device and brought it home. I loaded two AAA batteries in the darn thing and pushed the button. Nothing! I was disappointed. I learned, however, that if I pushed the button and pressed it against a metal surface at the same time; I'd get the blue arc of electricity darting back and forth between the prongs.

AWESOME!!!

Unfortunately, I have yet to explain to Julie what that burn spot is on the face of her microwave.

Okay, so I was home alone with this new toy, thinking to myself that it couldn't be all that bad with only two triple-A batteries, right? There I sat in my recliner, my cat Gracie looking on intently (trusting little soul) while I was reading the directions and thinking that I really needed to try this thing out on a flesh & blood moving target. I must admit I thought about zapping Gracie (for a fraction of a second) and thought better of it. She is such a sweet cat. But, if I was going to give this thing to my wife to protect herself against a mugger, I did want some assurance that it would work as advertised. Am I wrong?

So, there I sat in a pair of shorts and a tank top with my reading glasses perched delicately on the bridge of my nose, directions in one hand, and tazer in another. The directions said that a one-second burst would shock and disorient your assailant; a two-second burst was supposed to cause muscle spasms and a major loss of bodily control; a three-second burst would purportedly make your assailant flop on the ground like a fish out of water. Any burst longer than three seconds would be wasting the batteries.

All the while I'm looking at this little device measuring about 5" long, less than 3/4 inch in circumference; pretty cute really and (loaded with two itsy, bitsy triple-A batteries) thinking to myself, "no possible way!"

What happened next is almost beyond description, but I'll do my best.

I'm sitting there alone, Gracie looking on with her head cocked to one side as to say, "don't do it, dipshit," reasoning that a one second burst from such a tiny little ole thing couldn't hurt all that bad. I decided to give myself a one second burst just for heck of it. I touched the prongs to
my naked thigh, pushed the button, and . . .

HOLY MOTHER OF GOD . . . WHAT THE HELL!!!

I'm pretty sure Jessie Ventura ran in through the side door, picked me up in the recliner, then body slammed us both on the carpet, over and over and over again. I vaguely recall waking up on my side in the fetal position, with tears in my eyes, body soaking wet, both nipples on fire, testicles nowhere to be found, with my left arm tucked under my body in the oddest position, and tingling in my legs? The cat was making meowing sounds I had never heard before, clinging to a picture frame hanging above the fireplace, obviously in an attempt to avoid getting slammed by my body flopping all over the living room.

Note: If you ever feel compelled to 'mug' yourself with a tazer, one note of caution: there is no such thing as a one second burst when you zap yourself! You will not let go of that thing until it is dislodged from your hand by a violent thrashing about on the floor. A three second burst would be considered conservative.

IT HURT LIKE HELL!!!

A minute or so later (I can't be sure, as time was a relative thing at that point), I collected my wits (what little I had left), sat up and surveyed the landscape. My bent reading glasses were on the mantel of the fireplace. The recliner was upside down and about 8 feet or so from where it
originally was. My triceps, right thigh and both nipples were still twitching. My face felt like it had been shot up with Novocain, and my bottom lip weighed 88 lbs. I had no control over the drooling.

Apparently I pooped on myself, but was too numb to know for sure and my sense of smell was gone. I saw a faint smoke cloud above my head which I believe came from my hair. I'm still looking for my nuts and I'm offering a significant reward for their safe return!

P.S... My wife, can't stop laughing about my experience, loved the gift, and now regularly threatens me with it! If you think education is difficult, try being stupid!!!



LOL!!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

More Man Meat

I have no words...

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Book Trailer for SEDUCING THE MOON

My friend, Sara Creasy (who, by the way, has a terrific first book due out in May) put together this video for me. I couldn't figure out how to upload it to Blogger, so just click here to view it from my website.

Pretty cool, eh?

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

Today's tip is a recipe, and it's yummy! And quick and easy to make, which is a big plus for me. LOL

Chicken Salad with Peaches and Walnuts


Ingredients:
2 large fresh peaches
2 cups chopped, cooked chicken meat
1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
1/2 cup poppyseed salad dressing
6 cups mixed salad greens
1/2 cups toasted walnuts, chopped

Instructions:
Chop 1 peach into 1/2 inch pieces and place in a large bowl. Add chicken and onion; toss with enough dressing to coat. Add greens and walnuts to bowl and toss to coat. Mound salad on large plate (or in large bowl). Cut remaining peach in thin wedges and place on top to garnish. Serves 4.

Monday, September 07, 2009

Man Meat Monday


Happy Labor Day!

Friday, September 04, 2009

Friday Funny

An old woman came into her doctor's office and confessed to an embarrassing problem. "I do that all the time, Doctor Johnson, but they're soundless, and they have no odor. In fact, since I've been here, I did it no less than twenty times. What can I do?"

"Here's a prescription, Mrs. Harris. Take these pills three times a day for seven days and come back and see me in a week."

Next week an upset Mrs. Harris marched into Dr. Johnson's office. "Doctor, I don't know what was in those pills, but the problem is worse! I'm doing it just as much, but now it smells terrible! What do you have to say for yourself?"

"Calm down, Mrs. Harris," said the doctor soothingly. "Now that we've fixed your sinuses, we'll work on your hearing!!!"

Thursday, September 03, 2009

New Review for SEDUCING THE MOON


From author Christie Ridgway at Book Page:

"Teeming with action and earthy sex, this story will rocket the reader's pulse."


Seducing the Moon - Available now at Kensington.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

More Man Meat

No new story today--still trying to figure one out. It may be awhile before a new one's started.

In the meantime...


Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

I've said it before, and I'm saying it again today. It's not an editor's "job" to correct a writer's poor grammar and punctuation. They do it because, obviously, they're not going to publish a book without proper editing. (Well, we hope they're not, anyway.) But do you want your editor's time spent adding/deleting commas and changing misspelled words? Or do you want him/her focused on the story itself, making sure it flows and has a consistent storyline?

Learn the mechanics of good writing. Then when you break the rules, at least you know you're breaking them.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Man Meat Monday


I just love all the...curves. Yeah, that's it, he's curvy. LOL

Friday, August 28, 2009

Friday Funny

A boy comes down to breakfast. Since his family lives on a farm, his mother asks if he has done his chores.

"Not yet, Momma," said the little boy.

His mother tells him no breakfast until he does his chores. Well, he’s a little pissed, so he goes to feed the chickens, and he kicks a chicken.

He goes to feed the cows, and he kicks a cow. He goes to feed the pigs, and he kicks a pig. He goes back in for breakfast and his mother gives him a bowl of dry cereal.

"How come I don’t get any eggs and bacon? Why don’t I have any milk in my cereal?" he asks.

"Well," his mother says, "I saw you kick a chicken, so you don’t get any eggs for a week. I saw you kick the pig, so you don’t get any bacon for a week either. I also saw you kick the cow, so for a week you aren’t getting any milk."

Just then, his father comes down for breakfast and kicks the cat halfway across the kitchen. The boy looks up at his mother with a smile, and says: "Are you going to tell him, or should I?"


(Thanks, Colleen!)

Thursday, August 27, 2009

A Rose By Any Other Name...

I'm having a devil of a time landing on just the right name for the hero of my current work in progress. I've been calling him Tobias, which seemed all right, but with a secondary character named Dante...well, "Dante" is just more of a hero's name than "Tobias". (Plus "Tobias" is the name of the FBI guy on NCIS, and...yeah, no. Not what I have in mind for the vampire hero of my book. LOL)

I find I have a hard time moving my writing forward when I don't have a name that works. Because I don't have a good handle on the character if I don't have the right name. (In Daring the Moon, for example, Ryder actually started out as Damon Tarleton. I like Ryder Merrick much better!)

So I'm perusing my Character Naming Sourcebook last night, writing down names that I like and that sound good with the last name I've chosen (which I don't want to change). I think I've settled on one, and to explain why it's not exactly a name that would have been used (probably) in the South in around 1830 or so, the name is a family name (most likely his mother's maiden name).

I think that'll work.

Oh, and the name? Rafferty. Last name's a secret. LOL

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Available Now! BELONG TO THE NIGHT

Wanna know where the real wild things are…and what they like to do there?

Belong To The Night



City Of The Dead by Sherrill Quinn

Dori Falcon is a witch with a plan: get to New Orleans, locate her missing brother, and recover the Eye of Bastet, a mysterious and powerful amulet. Her plan never included falling for sexy Cajun cop Jake Boudreau; but without his help, she may never find the demon who has her brother, and the key to her family’s survival.

The Wolf, The Witch, And Her Lack Of Wardrobe by Shelly Laurenston

Jamie Meacham has enough trouble controlling her supernatural abilities. There’s no time for lust, or for Tully Smith, even with his smoldering amber eyes. But Tully’s grappling with his own animal instincts as a powerful shifter-wolf, trying to protect all his territory—including a certain sassy witch—from vicious rivals.

In The Dark by Cynthia Eden

FBI agent and leopard shifter Sadie James’ undead ex, Liam, still arouses her deepest desires, distracting her from tracking the brutal rogue shifter who is terrorizing Miami. By teaming up with Liam, Sadie has a better chance of solving the case, but as passion consumes them, she stands to lose more than just her heart.


RECOMMENDED READ from TwoLips Reviews: "In Sherrill Quinn’s City of the Dead you meet Jake and Dori. They are two steamy lovers you have to meet, they are special and in search of a demon. When love and demon hunting combine you get chemistry off the charts!

The three stories of Belong to the Night are all very powerful compelling reads... When you want action adventure, love lost and love found you want Belong to the Night. This novel will make you want more of the creatures that go bump in the night and the mates that love them."


And the Romantic Times gives Belong to the Night 4 Stars: "Laurenston's story is humorous and has a mix of entertaining characters. Eden's and Quinn's tales are the real winners, with great character development and well thought-out paranormal aspects -- in addition to featuring second chances at love, and hot sex. Overall, this is a really great read."


Available now at Kensington Books.

Tipsy Tuesday

I'm departing from writing tips today to leave you a refreshing drink tip. It's very refreshing, and very simple.

Pour yourself a glass of 7-Up (or Diet 7-Up if you prefer), add Bacardi Watermelon Rum (amount depends on your taste), sit back, sip and enjoy.

Have a great Tuesday!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Man Meat Monday


Love a cowboy with chaps and a big...belt buckle...

Friday, August 21, 2009

Friday Funny


LOL!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Romance Lit Statistics

Romance Writers of America lists these interesting stats on their website, from a survey done in May of this year, reflecting numbers from 2008:

74.8 million people read at least one romance novel.

There are 29 million regular readers of romance.

24.6 percent of all Americans read a romance novel last year, versus 21.8 percent in 2005.

Women make up 90.5 percent of the romance readership; men make up 9.5 percent.

The average reader is aged 31-49 and is in a romantic relationship.

91 percent are likely to seek out an author's previously published titles after reading a novel from an author they like.

45.1 percent were not aware that authors receive no royalty payment for the purchase of used books.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

Before you let the excitement of being published carry you away, think long and hard before you sign a contract to self-publish, and know exactly what you're getting into. Self-pubbed authors have no publisher backing (i.e., no promotion at all), and many booksellers won't order copies of the books because they can't be returned under the normal system where they strip the covers and send unsold books back to the publisher for a credit. Sometimes self-publishing may be the way to go, but if you're looking to build a writing career, which includes building solid sales numbers, think twice.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Man Meat Monday

Another of my favs:




Got milk?

Friday, August 14, 2009

Friday Funny

Cash for Clunkers?


If my body were a car, this is the time I would be thinking about trading it in for a newer model. I've got bumps and dents and scratches in my finish, and my paint job is getting a little dull. But that's not the worst of it. My headlights are out of focus, and it's especially hard to see things up close.

My traction is not as graceful as it once was. I slip and slide and skid and bump into things even in the best of weather.

My whitewalls are stained with varicose veins. It takes me hours to reach my maximum speed. My fuel rate burns inefficiently.


But here's the worst of it --

Almost every time I sneeze, cough or laugh, either my radiator leaks or my exhaust backfires.

CASH FOR CLUNKERS..........I QUALIFY - How about You?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

New Review for BELONG TO THE NIGHT


4 Stars from Romantic Times: "Laurenston's story is humorous and has a mix of entertaining characters. Eden's and Quinn's tales are the real winners, with great character development and well thought-out paranormal aspects--in addition to featuring second chances at love, and hot sex. Overall, this is a really great read."


Available for pre-order at Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million, Borders and Amazon.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

Be true to your point of view.

What do I mean? Let's look at the opening paragraph in the new Nikki Heat novel, penned by a ghost author writing as Richard Castle. (This is a novel that's tied to Nathan Fillion's show, Castle--which, by the way, I really enjoy!)

It was always the same for her when she arrived to meet the body. After she unbuckled her seat belt, after she pulled a stick pen from the rubber band on the sun visor, after her long fingers brushed her hip to feel the comfort of her service piece, what she always did was pause. Not long. Just the length of a slow deep breath. That's all it took for her to remember the one thing she will never forget. Another body waited. She drew the breath. And when she could feel the raw edges of the hole that had been blown in her life, Detective Nikki Heat was ready. She opened the car door and went to work.

First, let me say I think this is a great opening paragraph. My nitpick comes in just one area. "...after her long fingers brushed her hip..."

Because we're in Nikki's point of view, personal descriptors are out of place, in my opinion. If you take this and flip it into first person, would Nikki think/say "...after my long fingers brushed my hip..."? I think she'd just think/say "...after my fingers brushed my hip..." Descriptors of Nikki would come from either another character while we're in his/her point of view or, if the entire book is in her point of view, given in another way. But, having said that, do we need to know her fingers are long?

What do you think?

Monday, August 10, 2009

Man Meat Monday


Growwwwwwf!

Friday, August 07, 2009

Friday Funny

Facts About Old Men and Women

Q: Where can guys over 65 find youthful, pretty women who are interested in dating them?
A: Look in the library--under Romantic Fiction.

Q: How can a guy cope during his wife's menopause?
A: By staying busy. If you're mechanically inclined, you can remodel the garage. When you are finished you will have a flat in which to live.

Q: How can a woman raise the heart rate of her 65+ year old spouse?
A: She should tell him she's with child.

Q: What can an older woman do for the wrinkles on her neck?
A: Don't wear a brassiere. The additional hanging "weights" will take out the wrinkles.

Q: How can older people remember where they parked their cars?
A: Use the Valet service. They have to remember where your car is.

Q: Do older people have problems storing their short term memories?
A: No, they have problems retrieving the memories from storage.

Q: Do older people have deeper sleep?
A: They do, but normally their deep sleep happens in the afternoon

Q: Where can older people find prescription eye glasses?
A: On top of their heads.

Q: What is the most often used sentence uttered by older people when they visit antique shops?
A: "Gee, I have one of these."


These would be a lot funnier if they weren't true...and if I wasn't experiencing some of it... LOL

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Mass Market Release of DARING THE MOON

I received the cover flats yesterday for the mass market release of DARING THE MOON, scheduled for February. Check it out:


I love it! :)

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

For the serious writer:

  • Writing is about learning from every book you write what you could have done better so that the next time you do it differently
  • You have to be serious about your writing before you can expect anyone else to be.
  • The first draft doesn't have to be perfect. Get something down, and then you can fix it.
  • Publishers, especially in this economy, are not going to give you an advance for a book you haven't written.
  • Keep writing. While you're waiting for your book to find a home, start the next one.
  • You have to write something that you feel passionate about.
Happy writing!

Monday, August 03, 2009

Man Meat Monday


Lookie what I caught! LOL

Friday, July 31, 2009

Friday Funny

Here is a little something my sister sent me that is indisputable mathematical logic.

This is a strictly mathematical viewpoint...and it goes like this:


What Makes 100%? What does it mean to give MORE than 100%? Ever wonder about those
people who say they are giving more than 100%? We have all been to those meetings where someone wants you to give over 100%. How about achieving 103%? What makes up 100% in life?

Here's a little mathematical formula that might help you answer these questions:

If:

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

is represented as:

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26

Then:

H-A-R-D-W-O-R-K

8+1+18+4+23+15+18+11 = 98%

and

K-N-O-W-L-E-D-G-E

11+14+15+23+12+5+4+7+5 = 96%

But

A-T-T-I-T-U-D-E

1+20+20+9+20+21+4+5 = 100%

and

B-U-L-L-S-H-I-T

2+21+12+12+19+8+9+20 = 103%

and look how far ass kissing will take you:

A-S-S-K-I-S-S-I-N-G

1+19+19+11+9+19+19+9+14+7 = 118%


So, one can conclude with mathematical certainty, that while hard work and knowledge will get you close, and attitude will get you there, it's the bullshit and ass kissing that will put you over the top.


LOL

Thursday, July 30, 2009

New Reviews

From Romance Reviews Today: "The characters are entertaining and likable, and both the suspense and the romance will keep the reader engaged. Seducing the Moon is an enjoyable book that I highly recommend."

Read an excerpt or buy here.




4 Headstones from Bitten By Books: "...an enjoyable read, with a hero who was Angelic in duty but human of heart."

Read an excerpt or buy here.




5 Hearts from The Romance Studio: "Another excellent and great book to read and enjoy."

Read an excerpt or buy here.