Saturday, December 24, 2011
DAW is part of Penguin books. They do not accept unsolicited manuscripts. This per their website.
Friday, December 23, 2011
I continue to convert and like the story better as 3rd person. I think it makes Henri pop more.
I picked up 5 writing blogs to read this am.
This afternoon begins the 4 days of Xtian holiday. Cat seems to have plans for me. Maxie thinks she needs a kitty weekend not just a day.
Hoping to get to Waffle House this weekend . 14 years down here and I've never been.
Enjoy your holiday if you have one.
Saturday, December 3, 2011
I am converting my book from 1st to 3rd person- which I find is solving many of the holes.
Our GM at work got canned after 8 years. Now my supervisor ( who I suggested get hired as a collector years ago) and HR are running the joint. Transition is always painful- but I am hoping for good things from these 2 ladies. So far, they have shown respect for the workforce. So here's hoping.
We lost our overtime this week. It happens before the holidays anyway and allegedly OT regulation is coming in much tougher. I am hoping we recover it in about 6-8 weeks due to tax time.
But I finally am getting some sleep. I have been able to spend hours on stressfree research suggested to me by real life chefs ( my male vampire is a chef) . The way home at night is well lit- improvement over the dark hill where I was mugged in '02.
We're having catered Yule dinner on the 23rdfrom Arnold's . They catered our Thanksgiving. Last year we had Arnolds at Thanksgiving and Honey baked ham at Yule. HBH did a terrible job . Arnolds , incidentally, won a James Beard Award this year. They in t's and jeans beat all the chefs from the South in cheffie jackets!
Bad news is I have 4 days off end of Dec due to the Xtian holidays . Everything is closed down here Xmas day including the coffee shop and movies. Boring.
I have to do some errands - so here is where I click my ruby slippers together and "POOF"
Thursday, September 15, 2011
A few months ago , I went through a first edit with a chapter buddy which was a positive experiance.
I took Robert Bloch's writing advice and let the first book rest while I worked on the second. Now looking back, it seems that Heni chopped an awful lot of vegetables in the first book. There is only one time when it is an expression of his emotional state, That I will keep. So I have started to fine tune what he and Katy do in the cafe. I have spent hours watching technique on video and talking to local chefs. When I get to a point when I feel that its time, then will rewrite some of the scenes. I think it will make a better product.
I did the group crit thing for awhile with the first book. Some of the comments were helpful and constructive. Some were just to get points to get their own work critted and some were plain stupid. When I began this, I hadn't realized how hard it was for some people to get their head around genetic not undead vampires. I am not sure of how I feel about submitting to group crit again.
So that's where I am right now.
Monday, September 5, 2011
I have done some writing exercises and answered some email.
I have been working 2 new clients to get their money to pop. The progress is encouraging.
There is always time to spend with my vamps. The second novel is coming along nicely . I also learned some information that will make a small change in the first novel.
I haven't dropped off of the earth. Somedays it just spins faster than I can move.
Saturday, August 20, 2011
I attended my first last night and I will go back. It caused a great deal of introspection on Ceiling and when I write the next draft, should fix some issues.
I tried to post this before and it only 1/2 took.
Tuesday, August 9, 2011
People down here are pretty pissed and tired of being poor. Tired of not getting paid, tired of everyone not catching a breath and taking a step backwards when creditors call for their money. Ok, now that ACORN has been paid off with healthcare, can we please get serious? Its not that Americans won't do certain jobs- just not for ten cents on the dollar. We are going to do it ourselves. so why do we need them? Maybe as this thinkis supposed to be for and by the people, maybe the people whould look at revision. Federal retirement added to Social Security, reducing the pensions to the average pension of the majority of the constituents of the electoral district. Federal health care needs to join Medicare. Both Social Security and Medicare have had nonrelated loans conscripted from them. No privilege beyond the joy of service for public service. Bet you'de hear some screaming then.
On my writing, my vamps are well and alive on the West Coast just north of Berkeley for book 2 ( still not named) . Where the first book established conflict and characters , the second has more action as the Lillerics decide , after centuries, that they are through running from the children of Adam and Eve. Running has delayed not solve the problems that they are now experiancing. Technology is neutral and aids both sides. there are some new characters and , I hope, gives more insight into their society.
Unlike Charlaine Harris's vamps, they don't want their civil rights or recognition as a race. the idea of a Great Revelation as in True Blood , would horrify them . They want to be left alone. I did find, however , the idea of Craig's list as a take out menu appealing.
Thursday, June 2, 2011
I was surprised by the authors that were read more than the others. I was so sure that Robert Bloch would do better but then I really got hooked on Lynsay Sands. I also started reading the Sookie Stackhouse books because I signed up with a Yahoo group to talk about True Blood. The comparisons between the books and the series got me focused on them.
Then there were changes in my life. We lost our major client at work . For about six weeks, I was afraid that I would lose everything. I am spending more time at work now as I finally got a new client. I qualify for overtime for the first time in four months. I would have expected to focus on my literary escape better than I did . All I did was worry myself sick. Sometimes real life insists on intruding. Right now I am not very fond of real life so am spending time once again in Bon Temps.
Goodreads.com sponsors the event , I believe that my pages are open to public, so please feel free to watch my progress. http://www.goodreads.com/review/list/2511415. However I do, I am pleased with my progress and amd proud that I read (reportedly) more than the average American.
Monday, May 30, 2011
I don't see the point of seeing the remake of Fright Night. I like the old one. I admit it, Chris Saradon is hot.
And then there is the gentleman who may actually sell me that not all blondes are airheads.
Eric Northman from True Blood. True Blood returns on 6/26.
Friday, April 15, 2011
I decided in book 2, at this point anyway. that it might be fun to expand their part in the series. So there will be some fun things in store there. I decided that Joshua should be Jewish (Reform) Both Judaism and Islam have a edict against the drinking of blood. But if the gypsies can be forgiven for stealing (allegedly for stealing the nail meant for Jesus's heart), then Joshua can be Jewish. He just has to stay away from the sciatic nerve and spine. And Rosie, a woman that Henri descibes with great admiration as having the "bones of the life down cold," has an interesting background. I used to be friends with a Reform family - okay I own it, my mother used to send me over to their house , where I was invited for dinner , because Rabbi would argue with me , where her minister was condescending - I don't do "on faith" even today.
As a reoccuring theme is that vampires can be anyone , if they are any good about it, they survive and you do not readily spot them, they can be anything. Religious artifacts have no power over them - they are not demons. I had great fun doing Ceiling and to keep my interest, it is necessary that the development in Book 2 ( as yet untitled) be a growth process as well, as I prep Ceiling for agent consideration.
Tuesday, April 5, 2011
Yesterday , my chapter buddy , Mariah , sent me the last of her YA novel, Blood Moon. Its a wonderful book and her help as been invaluable. I have sent her the last 5 chapters of Ceiling of Stars. Her help has been invaluable. There are many light moments in Ceiling but my vampires are predators. Read this as there are some really intense times as well. The two parts that I worried about most , she critted as if I were talking about baby Sophie tumbling over in her chair. It did not shock her. I wish her luck with her endeavor, it is a nice story. Having taught , it certainly is something that I would consider on a reading list.
Ok, I am not a chef though I love to cook. My mother is a retired home economist with a major in dietetics . So where do I get Henri's cheffie knowledge? Some of it is experiance, I have cooked all of my life and some of it is because I shop at a restaurant supply store (GFS) at least some of the time.
Add that to years of working restaurant, though I don't anymore, and you have it. The don't put your knives in the dishwasher basket advice was actual advice that I had recieved while shopping. So if you are looking for inspiration , you would be surprised where you will run into it.
So Ceiling is soming together nicely , Mariah's edits and comments have been valid. I am going to finish cleaning up the manuscript and stick it away for the next thirty to sixty days . Then I will reread it and see what changes need to be made. In the meantime, I have started writing the second one- this was always intended on being a series. There is no title yet but ,as I have been told that most authors fall down on book 2, I am working on keeping the concept of genetic vampires hiding in plain sight fresh. Interesting aside, the supervisor from the other department and long time friend saw an outline of a conversation held with Arina in her new location . Henri, though not perfect, doesn't commit most of the sins that human husbands routinely do. Leaving the seat up in the bathroom is common to both species. She wanted to know 1) if he were real and 2.) how you met someone like he and his father. I teased her and said " You don't care that he drinks Human blood about once a week do you? That people may die?" She was pretty much willing to over look the blood drinking if he would pick up after himself and help with the care of any kids (Henri is good about both.) She said that she had watched me write this thing for about two years and never once had I ever had Henri say that Arina needed to lose five pounds. Henri would be so pleased- he is competitive and likes to make Human men look bad. Sad part is if human men are capable of learning the same lessons , they are not doing it but then Henri is over 200 years old .
Thursday, March 31, 2011
Friday, March 25, 2011
Monday, March 21, 2011
Keeping up with my vampires has been and will continue to be an educational experiance. While polishing up the first one, I have begun the second ( which was a suggestion by an agent blog). The other suggestion that I follow is to get the story out there first. The original draft of Ceiling does not bear much resemblance to what exists today. I suspect that the final draft will be even a little different from the current one. But I know where I am going and it makes the writing better. No plans for more kids in the second for this duo, this is basically Henri and Arina together without Jean Paul to oversee. There were hints in Ceiling that Henri and Jean Paul had quarreled before Ceiling , and I intend in the second one to bring in some of where Henri was during the time apart. This will develop his character a little more deeply than the baby beef cakes with dimples /good husband and dad mode that was prevalent in Ceiling. There are unresolved issues from Ceiling that will bleed over into the WIP. Where Ceiling was largely about Arina's transition through her Change , the raising of their kids, and their development as a couple as they established a rhythm in their relationship,the society in which they live, the second one deals with perceptions of those outside their immediate world as they help to relocate the Colony from one coast to another. I definately want to do more with Rosie and Joshua who came in late to Ceiling -like Henri and Ariana , their kids are grown and there is nothing to hold them in New England. From the very beginning, these stories were always intended to be a series.
I just recently started reading one of the Vampire Babylon series, Night Falls. Love the writing , hate the vampires. Its better , I think than the much touted Empire, which I just could not get through .( Lorelei, you are a better woman than I for finishing it- I hated the vamps in it so much that I had to stop.) . I like my vampires evolving, intelligent and not guilty about who they are. I don't believe that Human is necessarily the most desireable existence .
I don't hate everyone else's vamps - I like JR Ward, Christine Feehan and love Chelsea Quinn Yarboro. I am currently getting through the True Blood dvd series from the library here - and may try some of the books after the fact. I don't find Bill particularly attractive and the camp is annoying.
But , I don't hate it. I loved the Buffy movie - hated the tv series except for Spike and Darla . I liked Julie Bentz well enough to follow her over to Dexter where she was his wife through season four(I think). (I only did that for one other actor and that was baby beef cakes ,Julian McMahon. He started off in Profiler and later went to Charmed. ) Cole Turner can be the " source of all evil "in my apartment anytime. All the demons were better looking than the good guys in that series. Everytime that it was announced that someone would not be back- I kept hoping that it would be Leo. He was a perennial wet blanket.
Sunday, March 13, 2011
I did, on a suggestion , take on a chapter buddy over a month ago. She is writing quite an interesting story of her own , which I look forward to each segment. She also made it through two of the three most violent chapters of Ceiling, without a whimper. I had been nervous over showing those chapters to anyone because although justified, they are very dark. Her comments were positive and encouraging as I am walking the fine line between wanting people to like my vamps and what happens when they are attacked. Most of their lives are normal , PTA /business owner lives, but they do have this little tiny physical necessity in the form of the need to drink Human blood. And they will do what they need to do to get it. They are not avenging angels killing the criminal element or solving the problems of homelessness by sticking to those not as readily missed.
Few people are totally good or totally evil. I don't think that the Victorian model of humans or vampires works unless you are doing a historical piece. As I work on tweaking the elements into place on Ceiling, I am starting the preliminary work on book 2 . It was always intended to be a series.
Anyway, I just asked her opinion on a recent section with dealt with time management on the vamps side , resulting in Arina hunting with two other females instead of her mate and not asking permission or even opinion. Her father in law had predicted that at some point this would be necessary - and it became necessary before he could suggest it. This causes Henri to trip on his ego because he has pretty much been (in theory) in charge since they got together. It also reinforces a theme that while the men are in charge on paper, the women are not powerless. I am looking forward to her reply becaue I spend so much time with these characters and have for over a year, it gets a little bit myopic at times.
I hope that when the time comes to share the second one, that the chapter buddy then is as wise as the one that I have now. We had both had chapter buddies for our current efforts who dropped out for whatever reason . We seem to be a good fit.
I would recommend a chapter buddy if you write.
Sunday, March 6, 2011
Like Arina , I am allergic to trees when they bud and dogwood in particular. When they "die" in the fall - I do another 2 weeks of pure hell. I am not allergic to too much else.
Friday, March 4, 2011
Tuesday, February 22, 2011
I have had some very good critters able to constructively without having read the previous chapters . But yesterday,a young woman walked in at Chapter 5 , then critted that I had not built my characters. Hello, yes , I did -its called Chapters 1-4. As one of the themes of the WIP is how Arina changes even after Changed, of course she is not who she was in Chapter 1. Some of the changes are subtle- especially if it deals with her attitude toward Humans. The critter told me that " she did not understand Arina." She also is suffering from that most dread of vampire fiction diseases ,TS (Twilight Syndrome). Unlike Meyer's vamps , mine are hardworking predators who are not adoring of their prey. She asked me why they feed from Humans and sometimes killed them. I told her because it was necessary and often pleasurable. They think that the sole purpose of Humans is to be a "menu item". Other than that, they are very nice people. They view their position in the Human world more as Diane Fosse, Margaret Meade or Jane Goodall. Their need for the information is to prevent starvation. It was not the answer that she wanted. The question grated on my nerves,sort of cousin to someone asking Robert Bloch why Norman Bates did not have many repeat customers. It was such a cute little motel on the edge of town. They are good stewards of the herd, do not overbreed themselves(they have live birth) , responsible in most of their actions, keep the fact of their existence secret. It is not a YA novel.
I really don't understand the we are all special attitude of the young men and women today. I once had a critter who felt badly for a horsefly that Arina's uncle with a dishtowel in Chapter 1. I did not know that horseflies were an endangered species. She did write me back as I graded her crit somewhat helpful- I give a lot of very helpfuls and perfects. I spend time finetooth combing my crits as I rewrite.
The critter wrote me back , unhappy with her grade. She was only trying to help. I did answer her that I would be more than happy to discuss her questions after she had read Chapters 1-4 as well, I think that would answer most of her questions. I did not change my position on the subject matter but I did soften my tone ( and I had always been respectful and polite ).
After all, she didn't know that I had just spent an hour bailing sewer water (backed up into my bathroom sink) emailed the landlord and did not get a response , my boss self sabotaged and cost our department six markets and I have no idea how I will afford going to MA for a week if there are no commissions to be made and my father is holding on , hoping that I will get there this summer(he has been really ill) . They are selling the house after 41 years ,going to Assisted Living, And I got a note from the landlord at the message center outside my door , that there was an odor coming from the apartment-probably from the backed up sewer water,which had not been there when I left. She is not responsible for that pressure.
No, my disagreement was with failure to follow instructions . I am hoping that I didn't scare her away from critting, I think that she is moderately young. I told her that I appreciated anyone taking the time to read my work. And I do appreciate it. But correcting grammer is the easy part. I want to know if you relate to these people at least on a casual basis , not knowing their darker halves. Do you think that the window dressing is firmly in place? Would they look the same as everyone else to you? Instead she quoted me from books on writing. But her comments were out of context not knowing the build up or even the names of the other characters. And I found that offensive.
Sunday, February 20, 2011
Sunday is the day that I get "other " things done . Since leaving work yesterday afternoon, I have read 200 pages in Breaking Dawn (Meyer) , picked up 2 other books from library (Sat is library day after work)and a Cusco CD ,had 2 unknown guys hit on me and nearly kill themselves running around me to open doors. Both asked my name. (This is the South but I am not looking for a boyfriend . ) One guy said he had never seen anyone so happy - and I am not a size five, not rich, and I am 58 soon to be 59 (April). So go figure.
I watched 4 episodes of Las Vegas(Netflix) - I think I am on season 3. I have finished The Pretender as of last week. I am going to watch a documentary , When the Violence Stops and a movie , The Contender , this afternoon.
My chapter partner and I have exchanged about 8,000 words each this week , which we have read ,critted and returned. I tweeked the next chapter to be ready to send when she is ready.
I visited some blogs this morning and collected a few more.
http://absolutewrite.com ( There is an interview with agent Evan Marshall on this site, takes about 23 mins.)
I found out that there is going to be a conference in Nashville in August at Hutton Hotel. (They are having a seminar on serial killers among other things .) http://killernashville.com I want to go- I like serial killers. Well in theory , the very few that I have met not so much (long story for another day).Its technically for mystery writers but will have publishing /agent seminars as well. And Ceiling does have a serial killer.
I signed up with Suvudu (division of Random House) to get their newsletter. They are having a contest -prize is a professional edit. http://Suvudu.com . I am not copyrighted yet and still have work to do on Ceiling.
And , oh yes, I got a free numerological compatability test in my email which I used my characters , Arina and Henri as the guenea pigs. Turns out that they are extremely compatable - which is nice . I posted those results over to Cafe Copain blog , if you want to take a look.
I am off to make lunch. No , I am not kidding.
Wednesday, February 16, 2011
But the bite of a Lilleric Vampire leaves no marks . So did he bite Caroline? What do you think?
The comment about boundries actually relates not only to proper behavior but Council restrictions on a No Hunt zone. (One does not bring danger down on community by hunting in boundries. ) Jean Paul is a Council member . Anyone who even knows about her is family.
Monday, February 14, 2011
I belonged to his fan club until I was 16 (about 7 years) and he always talked about the business of making movies. I learned somethings about movie making that most teens donot.
Ladies and gentlemen , may I offer you the link to Sir Christopher Lee's BAFTA Fellowship Acceptance Speech.
Friday, February 11, 2011
Totally different are the blogs of M R Sellars. Mr . Sellars also writes about the craft of writing and his life. He has several blogs which arrive during the day. He is the author of the Rowan Gant Mysteries. Now I am not sure that the general world at large is ready for a Wiccan detective but it is a door that he has well cracked open.I love his books. His approach is more tongue in cheek and amusing than Kurt Sutter's. http://mrsellars.com/mrblog/.
Steve Laub Agency is informative and gives leads to where I might want to next look . His are usually precise, matter of fact and to the point. There is a economy in his writing that reminds me that these are the type of people with whom , hopefully, someday, entrust my perfect fanged family . He is a touch of reality to my paranormal fantasy. http://www.stevelaube.com/blog/.
These are not the only breakfast guests, but I would suspect probably the most frequent. The morning that I was having a crisis of faith, I lucked out in that it must have been "in the air" because that was the day that Kurt Sutter addressed those same issues. I don't know him from Adam as the saying goes but you cannot pay for advice like that. And your friends who don't write will roll their eyes because they don't have a clue what your concerns are. So I accepted the literary kick in the pants from Mr. Sutter and got on with the work.
All this knowledge and experiance at my breakfast table , and I didn't have to scramble a single egg. Wow!
Tuesday, February 8, 2011
While Ceiling of Stars is cooling its heels , I will be concentrating on short stories and getting them into a saleable shape. It will build my body of work. Some of the work will be paranormal but I have some general stories and horror fiction ideas to solidfy as well.
At the end of the month , I will reread Ceiling and revise again . I will send the revised text through a different peer critique group. Make the needed changes and check for punctuation and grammer problems. Then I will pay to have it edited. I will make the changes suggested by the editor, Send it back for round two of editing. Correct and submit for copyright.
While the editing is going on, I hope to research one of the future novels. Currently , I have plans for a novel about Jean Paul and (senior) Sophie who are Henri's parents, a novel about Michael, Grace and Andrew, and, maybe follow up with one about the kids -right now I am thinking about (junior) Sophie and Christian but Val and Lucius are also a possiblity. These are probably not the entire series but those are the ones currently on the drawing board. And what became of the valet? Well, he is still out there somewhere. We don't know who he is and what connection he had to the O'Connors. I suspect that we havc not heard the last of him.
Saturday, February 5, 2011
I just posted today "The Valentine Mystery" at my other blog, Cafe Copain.
Cafe Copain ( copain meaning " with bread" in French) is the restaurant/cafe/bakery owned by Henri and Jean Paul Copain. The authoress of the blog is Henri's wife , Arina. Not all vampires are Counts or kings , some actually work periodically for a living.
The back story on this was caused by the critters in my peer groups who want to meet both men. Now I expected this for Henri, being the younger and a basically good guy, not to mention intelligent, ambitious , and artistic.
But there is a real clamour for Jean Paul which I had not expected , He is a trickster, a romantic old fashioned gentleman in his approach. He has a truly Killer sense of humor. So I thought it a nice twist on the traditional vampire to have modern women actively seeking to seduce male vampires ( no the women don't know) , quite a difference from 200 years ago. The men are flattered. Arina is serious about her dinner invitation ( which may not be as generous as it sounds . )
The Cafe Copain blog is auxillary to the book "The Ceiling of Stars" which is a work currently being edited and prepped for publication.
Sunday, January 2, 2011
Yes, (sigh) I know that it got misspelled for the link . This blog is concurrent to the novel that I am currently polishing ( I have the story together, now all of the technical aspects need to be tweeked before being copyrighted and marketed.) . I am hoping to build these stories into a series. Imagine , vampires on Cape Cod...(FYI , Southwold is built on some of the towns on the Cape as I grew up less than an hour from there. )
So , take a look , if you have a minute. Stop by the cafe and ask Henri for a cup of spice tea and a hot muffin -tell him that I sent you.