Other Pages To See...

Friday, June 24, 2011

Pirates Ahoy

I just ran across something strange. A site called The Pirate's Realm, devoted to all things piratey (their word, not mine) has lifted my blog post titled Before Pirates of the Caribbean... and posted it on their site. The word pirate put me on the alert and caused me to investigate. But I found nothing to complain about. They've attributed the post to me and in order to read it, they've linked it back to the original post here. Here's a link to the "piratey" site, if you want to take a look. Makes me wonder what else is out there, and maybe whatever else is out there is the reason I have so much traffic to my blog but no comments. Avast all ye lurkers! I'm onto ye! Aargh! Sing it with me now -- Fifteen men on a dead man's chest, yo-ho-ho and a bottle of rum...

Devon the landlubber

Thursday, June 23, 2011

The Good News Is...

Thanks to Smashwords, Angel in the Rain is now up on Kobo and Sony. I'm sure it's showing up in other places, too, if I took the time to go look.

I have my office back! Can't tell you how thrilled and relieved I am. Now I can write again. A solution finally occurred to me two nights ago. I could move mother to my son's room and run the phone cord from her heart monitor through the wall into our bedroom. So that's what I did yesterday. I punched a hole through the wall and problem solved. Hey, what's a little hole in the wall compared to writing time.

For the past nine months, we've been involved with my dear hubby adopting my daughter from my first marriage. She's always been with me, and then with my husband since we were married twenty-three years ago. But because she's an adult (33) with Angelman's Syndrome, it's been more of an involved process than we anticipated. But an end is now in sight! We have a court date for the second week in July. Wish us luck. This is long overdue, folks.

For the past several days, sales have nearly flatlined. I was beginning to get a little down in the dumps over it. Then, last night when I checked email for the last time before turning in, I had a lovely note from a reader who told me I'm now one of her favorite authors and she's eagerly awaiting my next book. Doesn't get much better than that. Thank you, Ashley, wherever you are, for giving this old gal a much-needed pick-me-up! :o)

Hope all your news today was good news.
Happy reading and writing!


Sunday, June 19, 2011

Falling Skies

Tonight, hubby and I watched the 2-hour premiere of Falling Skies on TBS. What can I say, I'm a Noah Wyle fan and there's a real dearth of entertainment on tv these days.

Overall, I was disappointed. I expected more from Steven Spielberg and Dreamworks but this was nothing but a knockoff of The War of the Worlds with a plot that is too familiar and tired. Noah Wyle is still playing his Librarian character, the brainy professor who is a warrior. Like Tom Cruise in WOTW, he has children he's dragging around with him while running from and battling aliens who've taken over earth. He belongs to a group of survivors who call themselves the Massachusetts Resistance. Toss in a pediatrician love interest (though this has yet to develop)--who treats all wounds and is the voice of reason--add to that a counter movement led by a long-haired bad boy (think Sawyer in Lost), two hot militant blondes, an overbearing ex military man who heads up the resistance, the requisite African-American and Asian secondary characters, and the old, wise couple and you've pretty much got the entire cast.

There's nothing new here. Same old aliens and their robot counterparts roaming around looking for humans to kill while the mother ships hover over all majorly populated cities. I don't look for this one to last long because there aren't even any interesting cast members or characters like there were in Battlestar Galactica. For myself, I'll give it a couple more weeks to get interesting before I completely give up on it. Only because of Noah.


Monday, June 13, 2011

Edit Anxiety

I loved this the first time I saw it on DA.

Today, everything ground to a screeching halt. Our anniversay plans, everything. Yes, today was our wedding anniversay. Twenty-three years. Not bad, when everyone in the family bet it wouldn't last six months. LOL! What do they know. Instead of celebrating, hubby and I spent most of the day at the hospital, in the ER. He developed some pretty severe and scary symptoms last night, so we were off to the hospital this morning. He has prostatitis and a severe urinary tract infection. Hopefully, the antibiotics will do their magic and he'll be fine in a few days.

Tomorrow, I plan to get back on track with the manuscript. When I checked email tonight, I had yet another reminder that I need to get this book finished and out there. A reader and a couple of fellow western romance authors were saying that very thing on one of the Amazon forums. They wish I'd write faster because they want to read the next book!

This brings me to a bit of a pickle, a problem that's been floating around in the back of my mind for quite some time. Even when I do have this book finished to my satisfaction, there's NO WAY I would ever publish it without putting it through some kind of an editing process. I'm a decent editor and my writing is pretty clean, if I do say so myself, but no one can edit her own work and catch all the typos, logic errors, etc. etc. that are found in any newly finished manuscript. No one. I'm going to need help. Dear hubby has offered to read for me, which is fine because there are some things he can catch. But when it comes right down to it, he doesn't know squat about craft of writing.

I need a crit partner. Or a group. But I have no idea how I'm going to get hooked up again. Over the past four years, I've drifted away from all my old crit pals. It's going to be difficult because a critiquing partnership is almost like a marriage. There are trust issues, and there are skill level issues, and then there are familiarity with the western genre and its tropes issues, and so on and so forth. Ack! Trying to critique with someone new would be almost like going out on a blind date. Actually, when I think about it, the best crit partner I ever had was a blind date. A mutual acquaintance hooked us up and we clicked immediately. But how often does that happen?

So... tell me, please. How did you find your crit partner or group?


Saturday, June 11, 2011

Baby Steps

That's what I feel like I'm taking right now--baby steps. With my mom here, the relatives are coming and going so much, I might need to install a revolving door. Plus, it seems like we take an awful lot of impromptu trips to town for whatever. Then there are the functions. Nephew's graduation, huge family gathering at the cemetery to decorate graves (people drive in from out of state for this), birthdays (hubby, mom, and my niece), and a first time ever family reunion next weekend. I know I've said this before but, I am NOT a social person. I just want to be left alone so I can write, not to mention THINK. I guess that makes me an old stick-in-the-mud (or so I'm told).

Would you be surprised if I told you, progress on the current manuscript is going painfully slow? No? Didn't think so. I recently read someplace that if you want to do something badly enough, you WILL find a way. So, that's what I've been trying to do. Find a way. To write. Even if it's only a few lines a day. I want to get this second book out there. I'm tired of being asked when the next book is coming out and having no answer except, "I'm working on it." 

Meanwhile, even with everything around me in chaos, I've been trying to get my name out there. Trying to network. Very time consuming. Time I should be spending working on the ms., I suppose. Like now, instead of writing this blog post. But it's so much easier to click a few buttons on Facebook than write sparkling dialogue when it's 3:00 in the morning and my mental faculties turned to mush an hour ago. Speaking of Facebook. I got a friend request from some porn queen tonight, complete with racy photos. I declined, but thought it was interesting because that's never happened before. Heh. And now I'm rambling...

It was my intent tonight to get on here and give you a progress report. Even though I've had a few twinge moments for one reason or another, (lots of despicable author shenanigans from the self-published on Amazon forums) I'm still happy with my decision to publish on my own. I'm not burning up the rankings, but sales have been a steady trickle. The key word here is "steady" and I can now report that since publishing on April 26th, I've already surpassed my royalty earnings that I made for the entire year of 2010 while I was under contract with a small press/epub. WITH THE SAME BOOK. THAT'S ALREADY BEEN ON THE MARKET FOUR YEARS. I think that's pretty remarkable. It gives me hope for the future. And that's a good thing. :o)

Sweet dreams, and my apologies for the occasional shouting.

Monday, June 6, 2011

A Little More Time, A Little Less Conversation

I thought it was time I posted something, since it will soon be a month since I was last here. For the past three weeks, I've been a fly-by observer of the internets and not much of a participant. My mother is here from Texas for an extended visit and we've had people dropping by from here, there and everywhere. Some of them only stay for a short visit. Others spend an entire weekend. Plus there have been functions to attend. My nephew's graduation, a family reunion, family cookouts, etc. Social butterfly, I am not, so I'm ready to pull out my hair.

My computer time has been nearly nil and this is really driving me nuts. I have a book to finish!!! I've already announced that it will be out by the end of the summer. What was I thinking?

What's the cover, you ask. It's one of the prototypes I was playing with for the aforementioned unfinished book before normalcy was snatched away. Seeing it here in miniature, I can tell some more blending is in order at the top where the dark area meets the lighter background. Finding stock images is a challenge. I think these look just a tad too contemporary for my historical, but there isn't much choice. I also have a couple others in the works and will probably post them later and ask for feedback on which I should use. I think rational decisions about anything right now might be beyond me.

So, how's the summer going for you so far? At least we've gotten a break from the rain.

Happy reading and writing!