Thursday, August 25, 2011


So, it's been another crazy week. Shows opened, I had an interesting time with the sound a few times!! LOL Turns out my asthma decided I neeeded to pay attention to it. I've been seriously fighting it lately. I had a visit to the hospital. They decided to let me go home because, a) I wasn't panicking, b) I had good vitals, and c) I'm not an idiot :D LOL Pretty much was the long and short of it. I was given meds for my machine, combivent to take 4x a day, prednisone for 5 days, and a different daily allergen med. It's making me feel like I have an angry lioness under my skin ready to claw its way out. I keep reminding myself (and everone around me!) that I'm on prednisone. :P But at least I have these things to help me through it!!

I am looking forward to a weekend of painting and sewing. It'll help offset all the cleaning we need to do!! Show times always end up putting us behind. I didn't think it was going to be so bad this year since only Nate is in the show, but...painting set and running sound have put me in that position! LOLOL

I'm also writing. Started the novel that's due Oct 1... yeah, cutting it close, but this novel has a much involved synopsis with lots of the twists and turns already written out (making it harder for me to start!) so once I get through the "why write it, I already know everything that's happening" issue I always get if I do that, I'll be  cracking! Anyone who's wanting to help with the whip, is more than welcome. :P Plus, I've gotten CP Edits back on my paranormal and started on that a bit. Now that I'm feeling better, and will hopefully continue to improve on that, I'm thinking I'm going to rock the house down this next month!!

AAAAND---it's my birthday and I've had a blessed amount of wishes on my facebook and I'm grinning from ear to ear! What a blessing the writing community is! So thank you to all my friends and family who've wished me glad tidings so far!! It's made me feel good :D

'Til next time...

Thursday, August 18, 2011


LOL I'm so tired that my editing efforts have been useless so I've been reading some back blogs to try and catch up. As a result, I'm full of information, doubt, righteous anger and what ifs.

I decided to post a couple of those to you. What if you're writing a multiple POV book? I can here the dreaded word "headhopping" hopping around in your heads already. But really, if you're writing a book form omniscient or multiple POV you must have some transitions. I've heard everything from, "Make sure you put space here so reader knows it's a change of POV" (heard it from multiple writer friends) to you can't do that. You have to have new chapter, scene change, whatever.

I've also heard from some editing friends. Mostly, they say the key is transition, like dialogue. But then, you have all the writer wannabe's (including myself) reading books going "hey that's headhopping, how come they got away with it! or I can't read this book cuz I'm now in the 7th person's POV for the book.

What do you do if you're reading an Omnscient storyteller type book? If you have an all knowing narrator, you're going to know everyone's thoughts and feelings. Have we gotten so stuck on holding everyone in the craft to a list of rules, that we've forgotten how to enjoy a well crafted story? I took one such person's supposedly educated wisdom to heart that, I, who was in AP classes growing up, have a hard time staying in one tense because I radically and frantically worked too hard at taking "was" out of my vocabulary because someone's creative writing teacher told her was was passive voice.

I was new at the writing thing and enoungh years out of school to believe said person. They were wrong. Anyways, I'm working on it. Of course, it's not helping that I've spent months changing my mind about tenses in a particualr book I wrote (went from third person past tense to first person present to first person past. You try it. Change a completed 85k word MS from one tense to the other and see what happens!)

Then there's the self pubbed stuff going around about poorly written etc. Well, to my deep horror, I have published a version of Winds of Fire that wasn't the final draft and can't seem to find the final draft (after beta readers & final changes.) so I dropped the price on my books and offered a major coupon to the twitter followers. I may have to pull it for a bit since I started a job and I'm having MAJOR formatting issues with everything. I got to thinking. Everyone is saying, you have to pay for editors, etc. Well, most of the writers I know are not rich enough to pay the 2-5 cent PER WORD cost of a professional editor. We are all trying to help ourselves. In doing that though, a lot of, "you absolutely have to do it this way" is happening and when I ask my editor friends (which I got through following their blogs and participating in discussions!) will tell me the right way and I have to follow my heart on it.

Then there are people who say don't cuz you might get poor sales. Well, maybe. I've backed off on advertising when I found the errors (after a fit of crying) so I can fix them. But also, I'm selling the fun ones through indie means. Not that the ones I'm holding back are dull and boring (quite the opposite, in fact!) but the ones I'm self publishing are the ones that I wanted out there, but have decided that I no longer want to pursue traditional publishing routes with those particular books. I wonder how that will bear on things later? But since I'm querying a project that is not of the same genre, will it be a mute point whether the sales turn out good when I go back to hitting the advertising hard, or if I pull it from the market? They're not the same genre, just some books I've written.

And maybe I'm too tired to really see any of this clearly LOL Oh, and by the way, I don't LOL in my books or use much in the way of parenthesis, or say cuz. Those are cheats here as I'm lazy on the blog :D (Oh, and I don't put smiley faces in either, even though it's tempting since I'm self pubbing LOL)

If you've self pubbed, share why. If you now read books looking for errors instead of enjoyment, even if it's subconsciously done, fess up here!


I'm so sorry, my peeps!! I seriously forgot about my blog after the last post. Not, oh, I'll worry about my blog later, but a complete, my blog is out of my head kind of thing!! As a result, I've had HALF the visitors in this last month. I started working, then I started helping with this summers community theatre set build, then I started another job, and I'm still a mom and wife. I can't believe how I had just blogged how hard it was to find a job that will work around my family's needs and now I have two jobs that will do it. I'm logging a lot of hours for little pay/per hour, but, that's cuz of the learning curve and getting everything organized.

Also, the more I help my bosses, the more I'll get paid. So, at the end of this month, between the two jobs and the bits and pieces for writing and painting that I'll be getting, I'll probably be able to be off public assistance! :D And I'll still be able to be home with my boys, home school and take them to parks/other fun places. Yeah! So starting next month, I'm hoping to have enough money to not be out of food before payday and pay of fsome bills :) I'm not getting paid a lot, but I'll get enough to make up for the garnishment that's been killing us, and that's an important amount of money. It was our food money. I can't believe what a relief this is.

As for writing, I've not done a lot of new writing, but I've managed to do some formatting on Winds of Fire's paperback version (I got my proof copy and OUCH!) and some more editing on other stories. I've also started working around in my head how to do a couple of rewrites. One is for the fantasy anthology. I've got to get moving hardcore on my book that I'm doing for Splintered lands as well! I'm going to be busy!! Wait, I'm already busy! LOL Oh, and I got a small commission for a painting that I"m excited to do!!

Sorry I forgot my blog!! I'm going to have to set an alarm or something to remind me to make sure I get one out at least once a week!! So, I'll talk to you soon! Don't let me forget :D

Friday, August 12, 2011

It's Friday

It's Friday and I'm feeling so much better about my writing then yesterday. I have a ton to do. My serial writer partner for Splintered Lands has bowed out, so I'm going to be doing it by myself. And I have to do my short rewrite and novel for them. I have a lot of other things going on--I'm helping with set building for husband play he's involved with for community theatre. That should take care of the bulk of my weekend :P plus I started my new job, which is not a huge time thing, but will become more and more so. Dress Rehearsals start this week, which will be a big time suck for Nate and I won't have a car for most of the week because of it. Major bummer.

I've been taking the kids to the park every evening this week because I know the next three weeks are going to suck big time. If I had a thousand dollars, it would be supremely awesome and easy. I could pay for a sitter, get Papa Murphy's and lots of premade food (ie shredded cheese, sliced mushrooms, that kind of thing) to save time. As it is, I'm going to be hellaciously busy and trying to find time to paint.

The itch to paint isn't so bad since I'm painting "murals" for the set building, but I have things in particular I want to paint. Problem is I need my varnish and some more canvases. I have a few left, but they shall be gone after my next painting frenzy.

Thinking of making some flapper dresses for Etsy sizes 18-20. I've been looking on there and MOST dresses are small or custom made (which is cool). But that will take some time. Not too much money though. I just have to watch for pattern sales. I have fabric that I'd intended for medieval dresses, which I could make as well. Having trouble with the sizing though. I've noticed that the sizing isn't consistent. Course could put that in the sized according to McCalls pattern number XXXX or something. Anyways, working hard to be creative, make money, and write :D

Thursday, August 11, 2011

For the first time in 3 years

I've doubted my ability as a writer. Seriously, all my other doubts boileddown to time. Do I have time to become the writer I know I need to be. But today, I had the thought that I was trying for no reason. I don't have many sales, I'm not getting positive responses from queries I send out and it's so hard now. Twice as hard with a day job, twice as hard with sick kids, and I've had both the last two weeks. which makes it all about ten times as hard. (trust me the math's right, even if it doesn't look like it on paper :) It's taken me most of the day to shut myself up and the whispers are still coming.

So, I'm posting an excerpt from Winds of Fire: Eagle Claw Series here, and the links. If you like it, please buy the book. If you like Harlequin's Blaze line, you'll probably like this as I'd originally intended it for them, but even after cutting scenes (which I now regret) I'm still 250 words over their max, so I toughened it up, (It's now a thriller with strong romantic elements instead of a romance w/ strong thriller elements. Wasn't on purpose, just happened as the scenes were cut!) and slam, bam, there it is! Here's the excerpt.

Victoria's fiance has taken off with her files and sold them to the highest bidder. She's in the process of a sting operation to buy them back in the midst of clearing her name of treason. We start with the two men she who have the stolen files:

The two men finally looked at each other and nodded and walked to the plank that went to the dock. They looked around uneasily as if expecting something. Her adrenalin kicked in and she went to high alert. Now was when something was supposed to happen. She could smell the fear wafting off the men as they approached her.

She did the swap as quickly as possible and instinctively dropped to the ground. Erica followed and a split second later, popping noise accompanied the men in front of her dropping. She had a frozen moment in time to decide whether to play dead or roll away. She chose to roll away and the wood splintered where she had dropped.

Erica was already up on her feet and squatting behind one of the pier's piles. Victoria grabbed both the money and the file cases and joined her. She pulled her Glock out and they waited for more shots. The silence droned on for a few seconds.

"Victoria, Erica. Come out, come out wherever you are," Kurt's voice rang through the still night air. Both women cursed under their breaths.

"I should have known you would be here, Kurt," Victoria replied. Neither woman moved.

"Of course. I had to draw you out somehow. You proved to be too good, even for the top brass. It is really too bad. If you were not so provincial, we could have ruled the world together. I'm going to send someone over to your position. Give them the cash and the files."

Victoria laughed coldly. "Yeah, right. You know I'll shoot the traitorous bastard that actually thinks I'll hand over sensitive files to them. You must hate this person. Despite your cavalier attitude, this isn't a game."

"Well, I'd hoped to test my men's loyalty. But, since you put it so bluntly, I'm afraid I'll have to save the test for another day. I didn't actually need those files. I simply wanted some ready cash as I was losing my army pension." His voice was suave. He could've been flirting with a debutante. It grated on Victoria's last nerve.

"So that's all the security of your country is worth to you? A few bucks? You make me sick," she retorted.

"Oh look. Now you've gone and hurt my feelings. I don't think I'll play anymore tonight. As much fun as this is, I want to be gone before your boyfriends get back from the goose chase I sent them on. I'm sure they realized it by now as neither the Colonel or the Captain are fools. I do regret the body I had to leave for them. Good help is hard to come by these days."

And there's your free piece of the book :D A reminder note, both kindle and smashwords let you read a bit for free, and I have allowed lending so you can share with your friends :D

And while writing this post I was told in no uncertain terms, by the main beta reader of this book, that I don't get to quit being a writer because she's hooked. I shall hold her words close to my heart whenever the whispers get too loud. For now, I'm off to do more housewife crap (although I now have a job :P) and finish up the spaghetti sauce, which my family only likes when I doctor it up to the hilt or make it from scratch. :D

Saturday, August 6, 2011


AS many of you know, my kids were very sick this week. It was a very rough week for me personally. I'm trying to focus on other things, but sometimes, that doesn't work. This week was one of those times. I did get some work done. But I'm not sure what is going on in the future. Not that anyone does, but my life feels very unsettled right now. I really need to paint but I'm out of Varnish. I have a special mix I use for my medium that is part varnish. Partly, I'm out of varnish because back when I got it to replace some when I was almost out, I got two bottles of varnish for acrylics. I paint with oils. That's not such a good idea.

My writing is going okay except for formatting issues! UGH I've priced down the full length novels while I fix these things. I got the print proof of Winds of Fire and almost cried. So many formatting issues. And I used their template. Instructions were copy and paste. Yeah right. I spent 8 hours fixing formatting, which I have to do again because it went wonky again when I tried to fix the other issue. and then guess what else? The template provided by Amazon doesn't put in page numbers!!! I want to scream and cry. And I don't like the cover. Maybe making my own, but they don't have the handy dandy template that's blank and let's you put stuff in anymore. At least not where I could find it.

These stories are good stories that I'm having fun with. Why does the rest of it have to be so hard? I know my work isn't perfect (if you see any errors not involved in formatting, please tell me!) but I want it as close to perfect as I can get it. I read a Harlequin romance recently that had bad errors in it and it reminded me that stuff gets missed even with experience and professionals. So I fix what I find and make it better. And I have no high-horse about people showing me errors. (not in style but in grammar. Style is personal choice.)

So, before I can really get going on my other books, I have that to do. And I got a provisional yes for a novel for a fantasy group off a synopsis and question and answering period. I HATE SYNOPSIS. I'm not big on queries either. And you know what? The person who was helping me, QUIT OFFERING WORKSHOPS. AHEM. LOOKS AT @CJREDWINE pointedly.

Not that I blame her. She has other work to kepe her busy, but I'm still not real happy about it. That last query I posted? Sounds interesting, but the book is hard, fast pace and slams you in the gut and I can't seem to get that into my query. I bet CJ could. She was so awesome and wonderful with that stuff. I'm still whining, I know. If she ever offers another query class, I'm going to sell my husband so I can afford it. Or something equally desperate :P

I haven't been posting samples of my writing lately because I was going to do it on my website. I have done some there, but I think I'm going to do some more...

How are my friends and followers today?

Friday, August 5, 2011

critique me query

I've written a book in first person and this is my query. Aside from the first person aspect, which I've heard is controversial, please critique this. It's *this close* to being ready to send out again after another round of changes :P These are the last until an editor says "change this or that" (except for grammar stuff. I'll always fix that if I find it lol) so help me out! Good and bad comments. ONly rule is make your comment constructive if it's negative. I'll take all the positive vibes you send though LOL

This is a zombie book, which will be obvious, and it's a thriller with no element of romance at all. If you got in your email, or read it on the back of a book, would you be interested in more?

I figured getting kidnapped by the FBI was pretty low on the list of things I wanted to do. It was right up there with meeting with terrorists groups and writing their side of the story. Why me? Turned out 'me' was a scapegoat for someone with some serious health issues. They'd contracted the zombie virus.

I was a zombie killer was killing them as quickly as I could. But I was only one woman. Again, why me? I was immune. You'd think being immune was great, but it wasn’t. Ever since the government purposely tried to infect me with the zombie virus, they had been watching me close to see if I turned.

The FBI wanted me to accomplish something big. Something big two thousand miles away from my home. When I arrived in El Paso, Texas after my long, strenuous drive from Washington, my contact agent, Joseph, wasn't available. Rude, right? I forgave him, this time. Being held by a zombie and tortured for two days was an excuse I accepted after saving his ass. Oh, tortured and not eaten had you surprised, didn't it? Don't be. They weren’t like the Hollywood types. At least not right away. First, they were super soldiers. They never got sick, their IQ tripled, and their sex appeal went off the charts. Trouble was, some of them develop a taste for meat—human meat—even before they’d died and officially turned zombie.

Problem with governments screwing around with our DNA was things never went as planned. When terrorists kidnapped my kids, all bets were off, even if Agent Joseph became one of the Infected. I hoped I could get to my kids and steal the antivirus without getting killed. Because if I couldn't, the whole world was going to have a really bad day.

Gal Friday Noir: Mayhem in Mexico is a paranormal thriller at 85,000 words. My preferred method of contact is email. Thank you for your time and consideration

Okay, after some personal emails, and the comment already here, I've revised some. Here's the new version. Whatcha think?

I'm a zombie killer at night, even have my favorite knife. But I'm only one woman. Ever since the government tried to infect me with the zombie virus, they've been watching to see if I turn. But I won't. I'm immune. You'd think being immune's great; it isn't.
Getting kidnapped by the FBI is pretty low on the list of things I want to do. It's right down there with meeting with terrorists groups and getting eaten by zombies. And if kidnapping's not enough, the FBI wants me to do something big for them two thousand miles away from home. I agree, but on my terms.
When I arrive in El Paso, Texas, my FBI contact, Agent Joseph, isn't available. Rude, right? I forgive him, this time. Being held by zombies and tortured for two days is an excuse I accepted after saving his ass and shooting one of them. But why'd they let him go so easily? We have to find out before the zombie virus spreads. And I have to teach Joseph the proper way to kill super zombies in short order.
Problem with governments screwing around with our DNA is things never go as planned. Their super soldiers turned terrorists kidnap my kids and all bets are off. We need to save my kids, steal the antivirus, all without getting killed. Because if we didn't, the whole world was going to have a really bad day.

Gal Friday Noir: Mayhem in Mexico is a zombie thriller at 85,000 words. I guest post for a fantasy site, Splintered Lands, and have had a horror short story in the online magazine, Forever Nocturne. Thank you for your time and consideration.

So what do you think? Also, looking for new title. This doesn't fit anymore :P Suggestions?