Category Archives: Random WTF stuff

To your health

Hi, gang –

Well, I’m still a bit of a Writer McCrankypants. My apologies for that. This project, as excited as I am about it, is rather stressful as all these disparate elements have to come together so that I can launch it to the best of my abilities (and then do the whole thing again with yet another project in the pipeline…LOL).

Remind me again why I do this job? Oh, I remember.

Because I luuuuuuuv it!

As I’ve been working on the project I’m about to launch I’m also finishing up a short story for an anthology. That one’s been a bit of a pain in the butt. Sometimes stories almost write themselves. Other times, they’re divas and require certain things just so, taking scenes out and re-doing them, and a whole host of other issues. This was one of those. Who knows why. It just was. I’m just about done and then I’ll leave it for a few days and go back and read it and see how it all feels.

Anyway, the past couple of months have gotten me thinking, because not only have I been totally swamped in the writing world, but also in my non-writing world. Yes, friends, writers have non-writing lives, too. Like anybody else, we have shopping, cleaning, and laundry to do (unless you’re all super-famous and can hire that out), cars to get fixed, animals to take care of, jobs to go to, family and friends to check in with and/or take care of, home repairs, doctors’ appointments, haircuts, bills to pay, taxes to do (ARGH)…

Which means for those of us who write and work full-time day jobs, there isn’t a whole lot of time for either. And that got me thinking about much larger things that maybe writers and other creative pursuit-types don’t think about.

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Valentine’s Day stuff

Hi, all–

Hope everybody’s super-groovy.

As a little reminder, in case you haven’t read it, here’s my freebie Valentine’s Day story Floral Designs.

Author Jove Belle and I are doing a 2-hour gabfest at the Virtual Livingroom this Saturday the 15th 1 PM-3 PM EST (US time). We’ll be chatting to each other and taking questions from anyone who wants to chime in. We do have a topic we’ll be discussing (JUICY, people! JUICY!) but we’re not going to tell you what it is. We’ll spring it on yuh Saturday. Here’s the rundown of what’s up at the VLR this weekend:



Coming this weekend Saturday 15th February and Sunday 16th February from 11:00 to 21:00 EST

The following authors will be discussing ROMANCE


And DEFINITELY tune in to Women and Words on Friday, February 14th. We’ve got author Lynette Mae in the house discussing her brand new book, Rebound! Seriously. Hit that link for the trailer.

Happy Thursday!

Things I’ve been up to

Hiya, peeps –

Some of you know that in addition to the writing stuff, I’m also an assistant editor over at Luna Station Quarterly, an ezine that publishes spec fic (short stories) by women. They’re always interested in finding new writers as well as established, so if you write spec fic (and that encompasses sci fi, fantasy, paranormal, fairy-tale-ish), consider them as a venue for your work. If you read spec fic or you’re interested in some fine short fiction in the genre, maybe add LSQ to your go-to sites for that. You can read an interview I did with LSQ’s founder and editor, Jennifer Parsons, here.

Now, what have I been up to? Well, I’m preparing the follow-up to my novella From the Boots Up for publication in late spring. It’s a novel-length, and it’s gone through a lot of re-writing. OMG. I had a draft manuscript of it written about 4 years ago. I gutted it, re-shaped it, and sent it to my primary beta/editor who sent it back for more gutting and tweaking. I finished that and now I’m getting it formatted and pretty-fied. Or something. There’s a designer working on the cover and it’ll be going into editing and proofreading soon. Whew. So stay tuned…

I’ve also got another romance novel I’m trying to finish up so I can send it to a couple of betas. That one I’m hoping to have out in the fall. I’m also working on book 4 in my sci fi series (The Far Seek Chronicles, for those not in the know) and I’ll be starting some research for the fifth New Mexico book.

That doesn’t count the conferences I’ll be attending and events I’m helping plan. So basically, I have my work cut out for me this year. Heh.

Speaking of From the Boots Up, it got reviewed in Curve Mag, which is a pot of awesome. Here’s the link if you’re interested.

I’ve also been interviewed in a couple of different venues recently. Ylva Publishing posted this one with me, and thriller/mystery writer Jon Michaelsen had me aboard at his blog. If you missed it, here.

And as always, you can find me at the Women and Words blogsite, where I’m a co-admin and blogger.

So hope everybody has a great rest of the week and if you’re caught in any of the terrible weather out there, stay safe.

Happy reading, happy writing!


Hi, peeps!

Been a few days. I’ve been battling a winter-time nasty cootie attack that involved feeling like crap for over a week. Some monsters aren’t visible to the naked eye, but they can lay you out just as easily as a zombie or werewolf or pissed-off MMA fighter.

And when I physically feel crappy, I don’t have the creative energy to work on my fiction writing. So I spent a lot of time watching movies and paranormal shows on Netflix and basically sleeping. In other words, spending a lot of time alone without being able to write or go outside and feeling generally icky.

For me, that’s a recipe for monsters.

Not the ones in the shows I was watching or the microscopic cooties that went to war with my immune system. And not these friendly, fuzzy ones:

Rather, the ones in my head. And those, my friends, can be worse than any external monsters we might have to face.

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Timelines, series, and marriage in New Mexico

Howdy, peeps.

WOO-WEE I’ve been busy over at the 12-Day crazy-ass massive are-you-freaking-kidding-me book giveaway we’re doing at Women and Words. It’s the Holiday Hootenanny, people! As an example of the out-of-control-ed-ness, here’s Day 8 for you to see.

Yeah, like that.

Anyway, I was thinking about the writing process behind writing a contemporary series, and about how time runs on two separate tracks when you’re doing that. There’s the author’s real time, and all the events and contexts that the author is living through and dealing with, and then there’s the series. I blogged about this time conundrum in a series HERE.

Here’s a quote from that blog:

Here’s what’s weird about a book series. For the characters in your books, time is a whole different construct than it is for you personally. That is, for them, a month has passed. For you, a year or two. And then there’s a lag between finishing the book and actually publishing it. So what’s been a month or two for your characters is a year or two for you. Which raises the issue: how do you keep your series chronologically accurate without having to write historical fiction every time you sit down to do another installment in your work?

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When writing is like a construction site

Hi, all –

So, yeah. Been keeping busy with some stuff. My latest mystery will be out in a month or so. Give or take (let’s hope it’s the give). And I’m working on a few different projects at the moment. One is really causing me angst. I like the characters, I like the overall plot arc, I like the setting and the romance (yes, it’s another romance), but like any project that sits a while, it needs work.

I wrote this novel back in…um…2009-ish or thereabouts and then it kind of sat around for a while on my hard drive, drinking beer and scratching itself while watching The L-Word and Ellen over and over again. I dug it out a few months ago because I knew it was time for it to get ready for its debut.

And time to gut a few parts of it and add some other parts. For some reason, that’s proven a bit frustrating for me. Okay, it’s pissed me off. I’ve gone rounds with this manuscript and with the characters. And now it’s time for more of that.


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Hey, peeps.

All writers, I think, go through periods of angst.

Mine usually happen after I turn a manuscript in to a publisher (or, if it’s a self-published work, when I turn it over to the editor) and I start thinking that said manuscript sucks giant horse ass and WTF was I thinking, turning it in like that?


The angst gets even worse when I start another project or resume work on one. Generally, after I finish writing a novel, I usually take about a week or two off from writing, and let my brain and muses recover. Unless something is totally demanding that I write it.

In this case — with my latest bout of angst — I took about 10 days off and then started doing re-writes on a project I hope to publish in the spring.

And I’ve had nothing but angst with this one, even to the point of actually not being able to sleep. Even though I really like working with these characters and this story.

The thought that dogs me: is this novel good enough? It has a lot to live up to, because the novella on which it’s based is proving to be rather popular with quite a few readers. I really like these characters, and I’ve been with them, now, for about seven years. I want to do them justice, and I want to do their story justice, but I’m freaking out that I’ll totally drop the ball and deliver a suck-fest.

And then I remember that I do this every time I finish a book. I write two series, and when I start the next installment in either, I freak out that it won’t be good enough, and that it won’t even make it up to what the others delivered (which I hope is good).

So I’m battling angst as I work on this particular project. The funny thing is, I had a serious case of angst when I released the novella on which this novel is based. The same kinds of freak-outs, the same feelings that I was sending my characters out into the world to get their asses kicked.

Maybe it’s just these particular characters. I don’t worry so much about the other ones. Maybe I worry about these because this storyline has a very special place in my heart, and I didn’t want to see these characters get their asses kicked. That is, I know that there are people out there who are not fans of what I write, and they’ll find fault no matter what I do. So I knew my characters would get smacked around a bit. And I know they’ll weather the storm, just as I do, but this particular storyline has really made me angsty, though I absolutely love working on it.

Upshot? Yeah. I’m in a writer-angst period. But that goes with the territory, in this writing life. I generally try to back-burner the angst and continue working on the project, but sometimes, the angst gets the better of me. That’s when I watch movies.

Any other writers go through angst?

In spite of all that, I hope everyone had a great weekend and that you’re recharged and ready for the week.

Dude, WTF are those women doing on those covers?

Hi, all–

About 10 days ago I blogged about sexism in sci fi (and we can extend that to publishing and writing in general, sadly).

If you have not read it, please read Kameron Hurley’s awesome piece on writing women into fiction, and ways not to do that.

Here, I want to talk a little bit more about that and then bring your attention to cover art as one of the layers (author Jim Hines’ term) in the giant reeking onion that is sexism. More on that below. First, I want to call your attention to a particular blog post…

Join me for more…

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Tech crap

Hi, peeps. Hope this week has treated you well.

I’m on a tech jag, lately.

I’m going to be updating my desktop in the next couple of months or so. I’m currently on Mac laptops and a PC desktop that is still running — wait for it — XP. Which I personally think was the last good platform Microsoft put out. I bought this desktop in 2005, I think it was, and here it is 2013 and it’s still going.

Want to hear me rant n’ rave more about tech stuff? Sure you do. Keep reading…

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Friday grooviness

Skip on over to Women and Words and catch author Baxter Clare Trautman‘s interview with thriller writer Amanda Kyle Williams. FOR REALZ!

And if you haven’t read Williams’ stuff, WHY NOT? Find out more about her at her website.

Oh, and don’t forget. Ironman 3 opens today!

Other stuff:

Have a dance party.

Jimmy Kimmel doing Lie Witness News. Made-up bands that people insist they know in the line-up at Coachella 2013.

Heh. The Suburban Jungle blog.

Fun tip:
Think up some random search terms to plug into Google and see what comes up. I just tried “Yikes, monkeys” and “butt zombies.” You’re welcome.

Happy Friday!


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