Friday, December 31, 2004

Ignore this post.

You might as well ignore this post. It doesn't say anything worth reading. I just needed to clarify my thoughts about some boring personal stuff.

Went to the chiropractor. I'm feeling MUCH much better. But as one of my resolutions, I need to get in all round better health. So I'm moving the healthrider out of James' temporary room and into the office so that I will actually use it to strengthen my upper body (which I was told to do by the chiro because of the upper back/shoulder problem -- not use the healthrider specifically, but he said it would work well for the strengthening I need). I am also using a bit of the check to buy myself a new bicycle that actually fits so I can ride it to and from work most of the time. The first three months I was down here I probably only drove my truck 5 times altogether -- but the last couple of months I've been driving everywhere. No surprise, my weight started creeping back up as I got less and less exercise. There seems to be a magic point in my weight where all of the sudden I start having health problems, and I've crept back to that point. SO, it's gotta go.

Got a lot of work done at work yesterday while the boss was out of town. I'm caught up and glad of it. Next up. Writing.

I am a bit of a workaholic. Not COMPLETELY (although my son would say I come pretty damned close). But like many women (hell many people, why be sexist?) I can't really relax unless I know the big things are done. Now everybody has their own "big thing" triggers. Mine don't make sense to a lot of folks. But I haven't been able to relax at all no matter how many fun things get thrown my way, because my "big stuff" is staring at the back of my skull making me feel restless and guilty. I want to start out the new year with things being DONE so I can RELAX for a few days. I'm willing to work hard to accomplish that.

I want my house clean again.
I want there not to be piles of dirty laundry.
I want my office organized the way I want it and things NOT TO MOVE OR BE ADDED.
I want to balance my checkbook and figure out where the money is going to go.

I WANT TO WRITE!!!!!!!!!!

I've been too depressed and stressed to take care of those things and others. I need to get control of my life again so that I don't lose everything I've been making for myself because I'm too sick, tired, deoressed and scattered to take care of things.

Thursday, December 30, 2004

Change of Plans

Be flexible. It's one of my goals. See, I have... shall we say... CONTROL ISSUES. (And yes, those were in caps for a good reason). I try really hard to be flexible, but it's SO not my best thing. But you can't control everything and it is stupid to try. Change can be good. (It can also be a pain in the ass, but that's another story for another blog).

So anyway, the beginning of this blog is about change for the new year. I've gotten some bad habits that I need to break, and some good ones I need to reinforce. One of the things I want to do is finish up some of the unfinished stuff that has backlogged on my desk. Since Cathy has asked me pretty please not to work on a Sazi book until the agent and the publisher ok the direction we're talking about going I'm dropping back to a mystery I started a while back. I like mysteries. Besides, working in an "ordinary" world means that I don't have to try to wrestle out the magical theory and laws of what can and can't occur. So I won't need as much heavy duty discussion time. We also had it pretty much plotted out, so that's OK too. (Assuming I can find my notes). And it would be a good way to make use of the short story anthology of mysteries Cathy and I will be in in April. So, that's the plan today. Tomorrow, who knows, it may change.

***OH, GOOD NEWS!! THE CHECK ARRIVED!**** And yeah, it went by way of Colorado. I'm going to be sending some reminder e-mails to get all address changes to all departments. But hey, I can take care of a lot of things with this, including starting a savings account for when James heads back up to Denver.

I haven't written in this blog about world events much. I don't really feel I know enough about things (limited world view, etc.) to really post my opinions. (If you don't have an informed opinion, keep it to yourself until you GET the information). But I wanted to say how sad I am for all the victims of the tsunami. A 9.0 Richter earthquake is just... awesome. I keep thinking, wow, would it have been WORSE in the atmosphere? I don't know my science very well, but someone told me that enough sediment was sent up from the ocean's bottom to equal a mountain the size of (she couldn't remember) Fuji or Kilamanjaro (sp.). That kind of dust would change the climate worldwide had it gotten into the air. I was told the earth actually shuddered on its axis. The scope of this is just beyond my ken. Water three stories high traveling at approximately (someone told me, so again second hand information, but it sounds about right if you have a 9.0) *500* miles an hour!

So many people lost, such terrible destruction. I'm so sorry. And all I can do is donate to worthy relief causes and pray. Not enough. Not nearly enough.

Wednesday, December 29, 2004


Getting ready for the new year. I have Friday off. I HOPE to get a lot of things done, but my son has social stuff in mind. We'll see if a compromise can be reached. I have to go to the post office today to mail out stuff that I was going to mail earlier but the holidays got in the way. (Things like... bookplates :D)

My resolutions for the new year are to be grumpy less often, to help James get set up in Denver when he heads back there in a couple of months, to WRITE a lot (as in finish at least two of the half-finished mss. I've got laying around, and get healthier again. We're scheduled to be at two different conferences this year (RT and RWA) so I will need to prepare myself for those. Cathy's giving a lecture at RT and we're on an author panel at RWA. I've never been on an author panel. I have no CLUE what I'm supposed to do. For someone who isn't particularly fond of crowds I'm going to be spending some time in them. The only thing that makes the thought of it less daunting is the male cover model competition. (What, you expected me to say the comradarie of other authors? Surely you know me better than that by now! ;) )

Gotta run! Hope everybody has a great day! I'll pop in if we get any more news.

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Greetings and Salutations

Bon jour mes amis. Como tallez vous? Je suis tres bien.

OK enough of the French already. I don't remember very much. When I was in junior high and took French I was TRES bad at it. The teacher required that once the door was closed we could only speak in French. My French vocabulary is VERY limited (and my spelling is worse) and consists mostly of the following:

Ouvre le porte, sil vous plait. ("Open the door please!")
Bon chance. ("Good luck." Spoken by my teacher specifically to me in advance of every quiz -- does that tell you something?)
C'est tres domage. ("Too bad" -- spoken to me when handing back every quiz).

Anyway, I am doing OK today. Not spectacular (I hurt), but we got an encouraging e-mail, our ranking on all of the lists seems to be doing well, we're getting good feedback from readers and more good reviews. So I am concentrating on the happy stuff!

I wish I was multi-lingual. I am good at any number of things (and yes, I know, that sounds egotistical, but everybody's good at any number of things. It's human nature). One of those things is NOT languages. I try, I REALLY try. But I am just SOOOOOO bad at it. Sigh. I want our books to be around the world. I want to visit everywhere the books are. (OK, so maybe Iraq and Antarctica AREN'T on the preferred travel destinations right now, but you get the idea.) It would be so cool to go to Australia, New Zealand, Europe, Canada,... and see people every place I go that I've spoken to on line. Don't know that it's going to happen, but it would be seriously cool. People are people, wherever they're from. Love and heartache are both universal.

If the books do take off, I want to do good things with the money I earn. Granted, first things I would do are: (1) Pay everything off I owe, including buying my house outright; (2) set up a trust fund for my son; (3) set up a trust fund for other family members. Then I want to take a percentage of my money to travel, but a bigger percentage to go to various charities. There are so many things people can do to help if they just do it -- but it's so EASY to just keep spending on things you don't even need. I saw a special that was the equivalent of the old show "Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous" where this entertainer had 20 or 30 watches at thousands (even tens of thousands in some cases) of dollars each! What a flipping waste! You only have a watch on one wrist for crying out loud. If you're REALLY fashion conscious, one with a black band, one with a brown band, one gold, one silver. Poof. Four watches. Five max (what the heck, one diamond encrusted). The rest of the oh, $100,000.00 could go to say.... Habitat for Humanity, The International Red Cross. Now I'm not picking on this guy (which is why he is remaining nameless). I mean, he works HARD for that money. But a collection of cars worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, a dozen or so mansions? He's single, with no children, and travels constantly. I realize its his money but I can't help thinking, "what a waste!".

Yolanda, Jim, you are hereby authorized, if I ever do get that wealthy (don't hold your breath) to kick me right square in the ass if I get that extravagant and don't share!

Gotta run!


Monday, December 27, 2004

Moon's Web Cover

Try this. :)

Good Morning

Good morning all.

I hope you had a wonderful Christmas. Christmas day was great for me. Spent lots of quality time with my son.

************** UPDATE/COOL NEWS********************
Just found out that Moon's Web (Hunter's sequel) is available for preorder now from TOO COOL. Cathy's going to post the info on the website.

We now return to our regularly scheduled post -- already in progress.

I am a grumpbucket today (yesterday too). I'm trying to get over it, but bear with me if I seem crabby. Little things are getting to me.

OK I just deleted a whole long bitch session because you really probably don't want to read it. But the good news is, this attitude is going to be a wonderful help in my getting into Catherine's head. Cat is grieving and part of that process is frustrated anger. Today is a REALLY good day for me to write that part. Then maybe I won't do something stupid that will hurt someone's feelings unnecessarily.

Anyway, I'll be writing the Agent's assistant today to see where the check got sent. It hasn't arrived. REALLY hope they didn't forget to forward my new address and contact information to bookkeeping, but I'm thinking my check may be in Colorado. Lord knows how long it would take them to forward it down here -- assuming the forwarding order hasn't expired. UGH! (Okay, deep breath. Calm, calm, I will NOT be a grump. I will NOT be a grump...)

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Let's See -- Some Answers

Hi Guys! Hope you're all happy and well. I figured I'd answer a couple of questions.

Yolanda -- The website for the Horror Writers Assoc. is: It has all kinds of information, and an e-mail address where people actually respond to your question. Hope you've checked into the RWA Online. They are such cool people!

Jim -- Moon's Web should be able to stand on its own merits. I really don't think you need to read the first one first. (However, I have to admit I encourage everybody to read everything just... well just CAUSE). Seriously, they can drop into the second book without missing step in my opinion. But just in case (aw darn) you'll get a peek at the first couple chapters when we get the new website up. (And who knows, we may do a charity thing for an ARC [Advance Review Copy] like we did last time.)

Anyway, wishing everybody happy holidays. I'm off to get cat food for Algonquin. (Onyx's "wife/mate" our female cat)

OOOOHHH I almost forgot!!! We're up for a Lambda Literary Award, in romance. They apparently acknowledge the best portrayals of gay, lesbian and bi-sexuals in writing. I guess Linda's having her own influence. (BIG grin). I think that's really cool because, honestly, we WANT to be fair to all of our characters and be open-minded and not be judgmental. If they thought enough of us to give us a nod, it means we did a good job. WHOO HOO!

Anyway, be safe, be happy (and Jim, be sure to use your sunscreen. Actually, you too Yolanda. It's summer down there, isn't it?).

Best wishes.


Saturday, December 25, 2004


Happy holidays to all! Stopped by to say "Hi!"

First, thanks to everybody. We got a holiday "present" from our readers -- today we reached the best ranking yet on Barnes & WHOO HOO!!!

Family presents arrived on schedule (except for the ones in Ohio -- but that WASN'T my fault!).
My aunt Camilla is in the hospital. Her appendix ruptured last night. But they think she's going to be fine.

Got lots of great presents. Today will be spent watching some of the movies, and baking cookies to go in the new cats cookie jar my Mom and Dad gave me. Of course it's traditional to wear clothes you were given, so the beautiful shirts will get their chance.

This can't be too long of a post -- I have to drive to the next town over for church. We have a church in my denomination here, but the priest is very rigid in his beliefs and they really don't mesh with mine. I end up coming away furious for a week -- which sort of defeats the purpose. So I go to the next town over, where they have a priest who is a really mellow, happy and more laid-back kind of guy.

Hi to everyone. Thanks to all who have bought the book. Special thanks to the folks who stop by the blog regularly and "chat" with me. I hope Santa gave you all EXACTLY what you want.

Saw a great sign on a lit billboard the other day. Santa -- Define "Good."

Merry Christmas!


Friday, December 24, 2004

Sometimes you need your daily iron(y)

Hi Guys!

Sometimes you need your daily dose of iron(y). Yesterday was a GREAT day. We got the e-mail from the publishing house (see previous post), Cathy got her payment for "on publication" and a box of books from UPS. I rushed home hoping that my payment and books would have arrived as well. WELL, kinda sorta. Cathy got the right check, but a box of the wrong books. I got the right books but, you guessed it, no check. I took her over half of my books. She e-mailed Anna to ask what the heck they want her to do with the box of somebody else's. (Apparently a 2002 bestseller).

I'm HOPING that my check arrives today. If it doesn't, I'll get by. But BOY that sure would be a nice Christmas present. Still, I gotta laugh. We each got half.

On a completely different subject: I'm thinking of joining the Horror Writers' Association. The authors involved are very cool and reputable, and I would like to branch out in that direction. I sent an e-mail inquiring as to whether or not we qualify. We'll have to see.

Oh, and for TODAY's irony: I got my Christmas shopping done. I mailed everything on "the last day that we can guarantee they'll get it by Christmas if you send it priority." (Now understand, I'm known for giving NEW YEAR's presents not Christmas presents, so this was a pretty big deal). Three packages. Two to Illinois, one to Ohio. So now there's this HUGE snowstorm, cuts power all over Ohio, and (you guessed it) the mail isn't going to be getting through on time. My sister and I both decided it was hilarious. (Then again, she may just be looking for something to find funny since her power has been off for a day and a half and will probably still be off until Sunday. But hey, on the good news front, they ran into a friend of theirs who had a spare generator, so they could use it to run the sump pump and get rid of the seven or eight inches of frigid water that had gotten into their basement!) I'm just glad everybody's ok.

Anyway, I'm wishing everyone a VERY Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. If you celebrate other holidays, Merry (insert name of your particular holiday here)! Best wishes to all, and thanks for coming by! (come back soon!)


Thursday, December 23, 2004


Whoo hoo. Cie is happy dancing again! We got an e-mail from our editor at Tor that said that our sales rate is *very high.* In fact, the top brass even noticed. When your sales are high enough to impress your New York publisher you get to do the happy dance!

Now, I may be nuts (Aw, who am I kidding, I AM nuts, but MAYBE not about this) but I have this weird idea in my brain that if you impress the big wigs then maybe they'll be REALLY INCLINED to look favorably at your next set of books? Teehee. And that maybe, just maybe, that royalty check in October is going to look REALLY GOOD. (Cie resumes the happy dance).

OHHHH my aching head. :)

The only problem with throwing parties is the inevitable overindulgence. (Wicked grin)

Hi guys! Thanks to everyone who stopped by yesterday for the party. I feel much better now.

Hope everybody is ready for the holidays because they've arrived. I'm actually feeling kind of festive after yesterday's silliness. This is good because my mood has been all over the place lately.

Cathy and I are going to be talking to the agent (for sure) and editor (possibly) about the future direction of the Sazi books. We'll see what we find out. I'm hopeful. In the meantime I'm going ahead and getting started writing just to get "back in the saddle." When I'm angry, frustrated and/or depressed I have a really hard time writing, so some of the things in my personal life have kind of gotten in the way of my creativity. I'm crossing my fingers that I'm past it.

One of the things that we're hoping to do is set two separate Sazi books in approximately the same time frame. THAT is tricky. I can't have Lucas HERE if at the same time she has him THERE. I mean, he's good, but he ain't THAT good. But we'll both be working in the same world again, which means much richer discussions and less crankiness for all parties. (Oh hell, I'll be honest. I'M generally the one that gets cranky. Don't mean to. But I just DO.)

So we're moving forward in a good direction. (I think). I just hope that the agent and publisher agree. (Keeping toes crossed. Fingers are for typing.)

ANYWAY, I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season and are not TOO hung over from all the virtual champagne. ;)


Wednesday, December 22, 2004

I GET to be happy!

I would LOVE for everybody to be having the kind of wonderful luck Cathy and I are. I know it probably isn't going to happen. But I would LOVE it. But there were times when things were really going well for others in my life and my life well... um.... shall we say "sucked big scum covered pond rocks?" I am so incredibly excited about the good things going on with regard to the writing! I mean, I've been putting together stories since I was what.... six? We didn't get our first book published until 2002. That's quite the wait. So I want to dance on the clouds a little. I'm so happy it almost doesn't seem possible that this is all real. Unfortunately, there are a lot of folks who are having a hard time now. I don't want to be tacky, or rub people's noses in it, but I really want to ENJOY the good times (they're always so damned fleeting). Have you ever tried to "celebrate quietly?" Doesn't work. SO, I am hereby nominating those of you who read this post fellow partygoers. Please put on your virtual paper hat and get out your kazoo while I flip on the stereo and crank it up. Somebody get the glasses. Somebody else pop the virtual champagne.

Any suggestions as to tunes? Right now I've got Kiss "Smashes, Thrashes and Hits" but I'm open to suggestions.


Have moved on to a punk CD my son made for me with my favorite songs from several different bands. Not Christmasy, but definitely lively and making me happy!

Looking for music suggestions..... until then AC/DC

Tuesday, December 21, 2004


HUNTER'S MOON was nominated for a Romantic Times award in the category of Best Contemporary Paranormal! WHOOOEEEE!!!!

Happy Holidays

Greetings and happy holidays. It's been a tough year for nearly everyone I know for some reason or another. Still, life is very, very good. I got all the packages packed. They're shipping today. They may or may not arrive in time for Christmas, but I just couldn't manage it any faster. I'd HOPED that our author copies of the books would arrive so I could send some to people with the Christmas stuff, but they haven't, so I can't. Ah well. Still, it is frustrating.

It felt really good to be writing yesterday. I've been having a hard time getting into the groove. I think a big chunk of it is physical exhaustion, and another chunk is depression over losing Onyx. But every day it gets a little better.

Currently listening to a CD of Christmas music by the Trans Siberian Orchestra. Lots of electric guitar. I'm not good with traditional Christmas music, but this actually does it for me.

Best wishes to everyone.


Monday, December 20, 2004

Cathy Suggested This

Hi Guys! Cathy suggested I post the address and telephone info on the Waldenbooks since they have lots of copies and I had suggested people could order from them. I would direct you to Hastings' too, but as of yesterday they supposedly only had 3 left and none of them were on the shelves (which meant they were probably in the check-out line [GRIN]). SO, yes, please support Hastings, but if you want autographed copies RIGHT NOW you can get 'em at:

Waldenbooks Sunset Mall, San Angelo, TX 76901 (325) 949-7040



Guten Monday Morgen

Yeah, I know, I probably got the German completely wrong. But hey, I'm in a good mood.

Got all the Christmas shopping done (have to pack and ship today). Got the signings done. (Which, while they will be seriously cool when there are people out there who actually know the series and like the book, are a little tough when you're an unknown.)

Sales are going well. Buzz appears to be good. Meeting seriously cool people online (Yes, that would be you Jim and Yolanda -- among others ;)) Got a plan of action ironed out with Cathy over the weekend (hope to run it by the agent soon). Son is doing well. Part of what was bothering my health was a minor infection. Now that that is clearing up, I'm feeling a little bit better. Still having some of the other symptoms, but any improvement is much appreciated.

The new website will look really cool when we can get it up. Right now it's on delay because Cathy has two articles and a bunch of contest entries due, and I don't have the software available at my day job to do it. So I have to be patient which, as you probably guessed, is not my best thing. There's an old Queen song that sums me up pretty well. "I want it all. I want it all. I want it all. And I want it NOW!" (big grin).

Ah well. Such is life. I'm off to write. Wish me luck.

Have a great day.


Saturday, December 18, 2004

Thanks guys!

Thanks guys! I appreciate the moral support. (Heck my morals can use all the support they can get. ;) )

Cathy and I did get a chance to talk on the trip. In fact, we're very much on the same page and managed to map out both a plan and almost another complete book plot. VERY cool. Apparently I worry too much over all the wrong things. (Then again, we already knew that).

The signing went really well. (Thanks again Jimbo!). The folks at Waldenbooks were great. If anybody is in the area and needs books, we autographed all the copies they have in stock, so you can get your copy there. OR, if you're not in the area, you can look up Waldenbooks at Sunset Mall in San Angelo, TX on the web version of the telephone book and order a copy by phone. If you already have -- Happy reading. I REALLY hope you like it! If you have any questions about things that aren't spoilers we'll be happy to talk to you about it here or in our "guestbook."

I'm so glad you guys decided to come along for the ride! THANKS!


Here we go...

Hi Guys!

Getting ready for another signing. It's about an hour away by car, which will give Cathy and I time to discuss some of the career decisions coming up. Could be a lively trip. We both have very strong opinions -- and they don't always mesh. BUT the good news is that we work well together and when we do finally hash things out it works out better than either individual plan would have (at least I think so).

One thing I worry about (and Cathy constantly tells me I'm silly -- but hey, I'll admit it, I'm insecure) is that we won't get a chance to expand the Sazi world to include viewpoints from more and different characters. If everything comes from Tony's viewpoint Cathy will do all the primary writing. That would have me being left out of the loop in my own world which would hurt. A lot. I want us to be marketable and successful, but I do believe there's room for huge growth. BUT I trust Cathy. I don't think she'll let that happen. We just have to find the right way to move forward and our agent will help us to do it right.

Gotta go curl my hair. Wish me luck.

Friday, December 17, 2004

Thanks Everybody

I want to thank everybody for the condolences. The support is appreciated. Hi Yolanda! So cool that you're actually getting to read our book in Australia. I LOVE the thought that people all over the world are getting to see our work. Just so cool! And I love the internet, where I can actually "meet" and talk to people from different places and cultures.

Cathy googled us and found a couple of discussion boards talking about the book. We joined in and chatted with folks. It's not only fun, but a great way to find out what people like, and don't like about the world. While some things are set for the world and the books, I think it's important to get a "read" what people want and think about your characters, etc. We want to entertain, make people happy, take them away from the hum drum for a little while. If they think about real issues, so much the better. I, for one, do not want to be clubbed up the side of the head with somebody else's view of "how things should be," so we won't be doing that to others. (Sort of the golden rule as applied to writing.)

Probably not going to make the bestseller's list unless the word of mouth goes insane. Kind of a bummer, but not a surprise considering the holidays. I never thought I'd be able to say that the Grinch stole my Christmas listing. (wink).

Gotta get back to work. Take care and have a great day everybody.


Thursday, December 16, 2004

Success Isn't Everything/Updated Info

Updated info --

We didn't make the bestseller's list. Competing against too many Christmas special offerings. (We lost to the Grinch, among others.) It's ok. Word of mouth is starting up. The book has gotten all good professional reviews and mostly good reader reviews. Got one real stinker, but I'm not surprised. This is not a book for everyone. I like it. A lot of other people seem to like it. But that doesn't mean everybody will. We knew going in that the main characters aren't "typical" romance fare. Our guy is fairly good looking, but an assasin. Our heroine isn't thin and gorgeous, and she's fairly spineless at the beginning of the book. So we were actually expecting a lot more people to "hate" Sue. So, hey, we're doing way better than we expected and are in no way griping. Who knows, maybe the sequel will hit the list in August.



Success isn't everything. I know that. But just in case I didn't, life has decided to hit me up the side of the head with a board (figuratively). The book is doing well. I'm happy about that. We may even make the bestseller's list today. (Maybe not. Have to wait and see). But yesterday I had to have Onyx put to sleep. The cancer had spread down his throat and into his chest. He almost couldn't open his mouth, and breathing was getting difficult. The medicine didn't help. So at 4:15 yesterday my son and I took him to the vet. I keep crying at the oddest moments.

Gotta go.


Wednesday, December 15, 2004

ALA List and Stuff

We got reviewed by the ALA (American Library Association) and got a very nice review. This is a BIG deal since they don't just review anybody and a lot of people buy based on their recommendations. WHOO HOO.

We'll find out tomorrow if we made the USA Today Bestseller's list this week. Keeping the fingers crossed as much as I can and still keep typing. The spread-out launch may hurt us, but sales look very good. We get more sales numbers this morning. On the sales information we get (it finally came up) we debuted at 74 (debuting in the top 100 is always good) and moved up to 34! If we're still moving up it's a very good sign.

To those of you who have been supporting us -- A BIGGGGGGG THANKS and consider this a virtual hug. :)


Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Philosophy of Life

"Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, martini in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming "WOO HOO what a ride!"

A friend of mine, Diane Bales, sent me the above as part of a Christmas message. Today, at least, it describes pretty well my philosophy... except, of course, I drink screwdrivers not martini's. But hey, other than that, it's a great quote. :D

Another one I like is by Albert Einstein:

Great spirits have always encountered opposition from mediocre minds. The mediocre mind is incapable of understanding the man who refuses to bow blindly to conventional prejudices and chooses instead to express his opinions courageously and honestly.

Albert Einstein, quoted in New York Times, March 13, 1940US (German-born) physicist (1879 - 1955)

Now admittedly Al was a weird guy with zippo fashion sense (and no hairbrush), but wowsa what a mind! From everything I've read he had a sense of humor too. He's on my list of people I'd like the chance to get to talk to if we all hang around after our trip on earth in a form that keeps us as separate individuals. I couldn't keep up mind you. But then, I figure he's probably gotten used to talking to people who can't.

Monday, December 13, 2004

Book Stuff


Signing went well. Sold a few. Met and greeted. (Keep wanting to say Met and gret :) ). I'm always nervous at those things. Cathy finds them relaxing. Go figure. Got the office 1/2 done. Will try to finish it tonight, but I'm already feeling better about it.. Actually had a whole new series and plot pop into mind this morning in the bathtub. I'm psyched. Even if we don't use it, it means that creative thought is returning! It's always the first thing to go when my body is acting up or I'm stressed out. So WHOO HOO.

Someone wrote to congratulate us on our sales figures -- figures we can't get to yet because the group that you need to join (and Cathy did) is behind on their paperwork. ARGH. We're hoping that they'll get the enrollment processed by Wednesday so we can see our first week sales figures. ESPECIALLY if they're good.

New website ran into a snag and scheduling problems (Cathy got assigned a couple of new magazine articles -- big important stuff that has to take precedence) so the site will be formatted the way it is now for another week or two. Latest for the change is the beginning of January.

ANYWAY, keep your fingers crossed that we make the bestseller's list. If we do, I'm getting Godiva chocolates for Cathy (I offered a bottle of her favorite wine, but she already has an unopened bottle waiting). I'm thinking Mimosas, because I like my champagne better with a little OJ in it -- and the bestsellers list is definitely worth a little champagne. :)

We had hoped to get Hunter entered in a specific contest, but unfortunately the PR department at the publisher had a snafoo and it didn't happen. Kind of annoying since we really thought we'd do well. But Cathy entered us in a bunch of others, so maybe it can be both a best selling AND award winning book, which would just be a hoot and a half.

It appears (I may be wrong based on returns and all that stuff) that we have only been out a week and we have already achieved earn out. Ahem..... WHOOOOOOOO HOOOOOO!!!!! That means that there will probably be actual money coming in for the first royalty check. Money is good. We like money. (Boy do I sound like an 80s movie). Seriously, I'm not sure who said the quote. "I've been rich and I've been poor. Rich is better." But I would like to find out if I agree with her/him. Things have been financially tough for a long time. It would be nice to be comfy.

Anyway, on the Jim Butcher list Jim discussed the impact of having a series go hardback. It was very informative and important stuff for those of us who hope to eventually go there. I'm going to find it and cut and paste it in an e-mail to Cathy. I may also ask Jim via post whether or not it's ok with him for me to put it somewhere on our site.

I hope everyone is having happy holidays. All the best.


Sunday, December 12, 2004

Signing and Stuff

Hi! Thanks to the folks who came to the signing. Not too many, but not too few either considering we're really kind of an unknown quantity down here so far.

Worked on getting the office cleaned and organized a bit today. I noticed that I was avoiding the office altogether because I was so po'd about it being dirty and disorganized and not having things the way I need them, so I decided to bite the bullet and get it done. I know people who can work under any conditions. I'm not one of them. So I'm HOPING that getting some of this fixed will make it easier for me to work on the book. Keep your fingers crossed.

Anyway, thanks again. If you missed that signing, we have another one coming up next Saturday at Waldenbooks in the Sunset Mall in San Angelo. Hope people come and we get good sales 'cause they really stocked up on books!

Happy Howlidays to all the werewolf lovers out there.


Saturday, December 11, 2004

Getting Ready

Getting ready to head over to Cathy's to go to the signing. I'm nervous and excited. We had book signings for our previous book (Road to Riches), but it's always fun in a nerve wracking kind of way. You can do your best to be ready, but things DO go wrong. Will the store be ready, have stock (already know they didn't), will anybody show up and buy books? UGH>

Good news, we're on the Amazon Canada bestseller's list (#12). WHOOO HOOO.

Went on the Jim Butcher site. He's posted the first three chapters of Dead Beat, the next Dresden book. Jim's one of my favorite authors. He also had a great discussion on his list about giong to hardcover and how much it can mean to an author's career. Makes me want to move to the next level soon. It'd be so COOL.

Well, gotta put on make-up and curl my hair so that I look like a human.


Friday, December 10, 2004

Hi Guys!

Hi Everybody!

Tomorrow is the first signing for Hunter. I'm stoked!


I edited out what I posted previously because I got on my soapbox and was waving my fist and shouting. I got really po'd at some nasty people on a couple of loops I've been a member of. But the solution to that is to just leave those loops. No point in putting people who are kind enough to stop by the blog through that kind of ill tempered nonsense.

I know it takes all kinds to make a world. I know that there is cruelty. I'm not completely naive. I even write about it sometimes. There are some very very dark themes in some of my work. But I don't like it when people rub their nastiness in other folks faces. Gets my back right up it does. But here I go again, starting to climb the soap box steps. So, let's change the subject.

I found a great present for my son James last night -- on a CLEARANCE table. A DVD version of The January Man. Whoo hoo. Early Christmas gift. Which was good because we were both kinda down in the dumps. So we watched the movie (which is one of our favorites) and by the time it was time to go to bed we were both in a MUCH better mood. I'm still looking for a DVD of Flash Gordon (wah haa... savior of the universe). Haven't seen it yet, but I'm going to try e-bay. James actually found a site that had Flanders and Swan's "At the Drop of a Hat" on CD, but it doesn't look like we'll be able to pick that up for a bit. Still, soon as there's some spare cash lying around it's on the to buy list. Because, how can I pass up such all time classics as "Mud, Mud, Glorious Mud" (a/k/a "The Hippopotamus Song") and "The Reluctant Cannibal." Weird British humor at its best! I can always use good laughs. I swear, I'm even thinking of getting the DVD we describe in the vampire book -- Fawlty Towers. Laughter is the best medicine, and I really need to take my medicine.

Anyway, I'm thinking of setting up my OWN list for movie buffs with James writing reviews and special sections for classically bad movies that are wonderful because of it (Flash Gordon, Attack of the Killer Tomatoes, Galaxy Quest) and "Big Dumb Fun" movies (more explosions per buck). I need to finish thinking it out, but I may just go for it.


Thursday, December 09, 2004

Alas, maybe next week.

Not on today's list. But a lot of stores didn't get it right away. The previous book didn't hit until it had been out 3 weeks. So we'll look again next Thursday. BUT KEEP BUYING BOOKS!!!!


Stuff and Nonsense

Hi. Thought I'd drop a quick line. We may know later today (or next week, but I'm HOPING this afternoon) whether or not we make the USA Today bestseller list. If we do I'll post WHOO HOOs immediately.

I have a friend who on her blog lists all these "tests". What kind of dog are you? What classic pinup would you be? Some sort of morality meter, etc. Well I tried a few. I am:

A pit bull Betty Grable who scores 100% on lawful good. (No surprise on the last one since I've worked as a legal secretary for 20 years).

So there you have it. Draw whatever conclusions you want.

Oh, and in case you want to play my favorite psych game, that led to the creation of a lot of the Sazi characters. Try to decide what animal best represents all facets of your personality. Not the animal you WANT to be, but the one you're really like.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Signings, Website and Stuff

Hi guys! In case Jim and anyone else are out there looking (and I hope you are!).

First, thanks for stopping by and for the comments. I appreciate it!

Hi Candy R! Glad you liked the book. Hope you came back and read my response under comments.

Hunter is now out pretty much everywhere, but we still don't have the TOR copies. Weird, definitely weird. The only reason I mention it is that we have a signing scheduled this Saturday at Hastings in San Angelo, TX and due to a paperwork snafoo the manager didn't think we were coming, didn't order extra books, and (I assume) didn't do any promotion for it. So, normally we'd bring a bunch of our copies in case. But we don't have very many right now. We bought some to send out to contests, etc. but they got sent. We can do book plates, but that's really not nearly as nice as signing actual books. Ugh. I do know that on the following Saturday, at Waldenbooks in San Angelo, they have ordered 40 additional copies just for the signing (and they have a pretty good stock on hand already). So that should be OK.

Anyway, the way it's lined up is:

Hastings Bookstore, San Angelo, TX - December 11, 2004, 12:00-3:00 p.m.
Waldenbooks, Sunset Mall, San Angelo, TX - December 18, 2004, 10:00 a.m.- 1:00 p.m.

I went to Waldenbooks, looked at the displays. It is just so COOL to be on the sales rack with the "big names." The clerk told me that they're pushing us to all the LKH fans. Good news. They were very excited about the signing, and generally really helpful. I like them very much and hope (really really hope) that the signing goes well for them. With Road to Riches we've had signings that did gangbuster business, and others that didn't do well at all. You never know. I want us to do well.

We may know tomorrow about the USA Today bestseller list. Cross your fingers. I want it SOOOOOO bad. But wanting and getting can be two different things.

We're revising the website. The way it is now isn't working as well as we'd like. We have too many publications coming out now, and there is too much written information. Things are getting "lost" in the clutter. So we're redesigning. Actually, we discussed what we want and Cathy is redesigning. We have very different visual tastes, so we're both a little tentative about making it work, but it's worth a try. We're also considering setting up another site accessable by link that has nonpublished work -- serials, a few short stories, things that we don't expect to market, but that we would like to have any potential fans have access to. For example, I wrote an inspirational piece with my brother and sister that I haven't finished or marketed yet called "Letters to My Child" that has all the things I tried to teach my son in it (and things they wanted to pass on to their kids as well). It might be marketable eventually, but the odds are very good that I won't have a lot of time to devote to it. (I did, however, already give my son his own very personal copy).

For those of you who have been reading the past few more depressing posts and may want to know. Onyx has cancer. I got the medicine that is supposed to shrink the tumor and make him "more comfortable." If it doesn't work, I will have to take him back to the vet. I don't want him to suffer. I've had him for 15 years and I love him more than I can say. So, while I'm happy about the book stuff, I am overall very sad. I apologize if the blogs tend to reflect this.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Stuff and Nonsense

Love is funny, beautiful, warm and... sometimes, painful. You don't want to see anyone you love hurting. It hurts you, sometimes even more than getting hurt yourself. But you can't prevent some things. Some pain is necessary, or at least unavoidable. Change, growth, are both necessary and sometimes painful. You can't wrap someone up in cotton and stick them on the shelf expecting them to always be there, safe and sound. It stifles them, stunts their growth. More to the point, they'll wander off on their own exploring, maybe leaving you behind. It doesn't mean they don't love you. They're just living their lives.

Sometimes I'm too adventurous for my own good. But it's made me who I am. I'm not sorry about it. I've been accused of being an uber nerd, of being absolutely cool, and more often than not of being a pain in the... patooty. I don't plan on getting hurt, but it happens sometimes. But it's worth the risk. Because I want to live, not just exist, LIVE. You can't achieve a dream if you don't dare TO dream. You never get somewhere new without taking that first step into the unknown.

Monday, December 06, 2004

Good Morning

I deleted what I originally put down for today's blog because it was just depressing. Onyx, my very dear old pussycat, is not doing well and I am bummed about it. But I'm going to try to think happy thoughts.

Everyone take care.


Saturday, December 04, 2004

Entropy Wins

Today I'm writing this in the office, even though it's Saturday morning. You see, entropy wins. Always. All it takes is one or two days when I'm sick or too tired to keep up with things and the sheer volume of... stuff (I'm putting it politely) overtakes me. Right now my office is unusable until I catch up with the junk mail (I swear I have megalomaniacal junk mail that is trying to take over the world, one inch at a time, starting with my house) and the aggressive cat-fur dust bunnies. Oh, and laundry. Don't even get me started about the laundry!

So, anyway, I'm here so that I can actually write on the book somewhere where the house isn't screaming "CLEAN ME NOW!". Let's hope it works.


Friday, December 03, 2004

Good News

Just got an e-mail from a friend of mine from back in Denver. (Who was trying to change her life a bit and move to Vegas -- which she did shortly after I got here). ANYWAY, Tami just got an offer on her book, set to come out in August if she accepts. WHOO HOO! She also was saying that she'll be attending the conference in Reno, so I'll run into her there.

I'm so glad. She's such a cool person and was really, truly encouraging when I desperately needed it. Because, in case you hadn't noticed (Hah) I have a little problem with my self esteem sometimes... well, most times... I won't WON'T say all of the time, and you can't make me. (Grin).

In case you haven't guessed, I'm feeling a bit better. Gotta keep up with the vitamin C and rest. Also, I've thought my way to the end of the book (barring disasters), and I think I can make it work if I can get time to write this weekend. After this weekend isn't going to be good because we've got book signings coming up the next two weekends in a row.

Book signings -- HAPPY TIMES.


Thursday, December 02, 2004

Turned out to be an ok day.

Turned out to be an OK day. Cathy and I had lunch, signed books for the folks who won autographed copies, etc. Once the medicine wore off I wasn't so tired and grumpy. Cathy was a great sport -- she sent me copies of people's happy reactions (if there were bad ones, she didn't forward them on, so I'm choosing to believe that there were no bad ones :) ).

Anyway, productive at work. Now I'm headed home. Everybody have a good night.


Think Happy Thoughts.

I'm starting to come down with a cold, the cold medicine makes me resemble a couple of the 7 dwarves -- Sleepy and Grumpy. Add to that my cat is sick, my son is sick, and people are being a PITA. I swear it would be a good day just to roll over and stay in bed! But I have a good job, and I need to put pen to paper, both of which make me happier. So off I go. I will think happy thoughts and maybe today I will actually "fly."

Best wishes to all.


Wednesday, December 01, 2004

There can be MORE THAN one...

Got a second before work because it's too cold to walk outside this morning. (If I can see my breath and have to scrape the windows, it's too cold and will make me wheeze).

Anyway, I've noticed something. While many (many -- and thank you, you know who you are) people are really happy and excited for me regarding the success of the books, there are also a lot of people who are... wistful. They're happy for me, but they're a little down for themselves or on themselves. And I think I've figured out why. My brother said to me "I always knew there'd be a famous author in the family. I just thought it would be me." In this half-joking voice. And as I pointed out to him.

THERE'S NO REASON WHY IT CAN'T BE. It's not like there's only able to be ONE book out there.

Talent runs in families. (It can also strike out of the blue.) Having one person succeed doesn't mean that there's less to go around for everybody else! That's like saying because *I* bought a Toyota, nobody else gets to. (Which would rapidly send Toyota out of business!) It makes no sense to me. I mean, no, you don't get to plagiarize (sp) or flat out steal worlds or ideas. But if you've got ideas of your own GO FOR IT. Since my brother loves sports (and I SOOOOOO don't -- except for hockey, motorcycle racing and the X games), I can almost guarantee that what he writes will bear no resemblance whatsoever to what I would come out with. And that's a GOOD thing. There are people out there who will hate what I do that will love what he does, or what any of the dozens of other folks who have been acting wistful (you know who you are) put out there.

So be happy. That this is working for us means that IT IS POSSIBLE, and for a relatively ordinary person no less to succeed at what they want. That is a GOOD thing.



Good morning. Just yawning and trying to get moving. Today's going to be busy at the office, so I'm getting this in now. But I'm really QUITE sleepy.

First, THANKS everybody who buys the books. I really hope you like them.

Second, THANKS to my son James who helped me celebrate last night.

Third, on a totally unrelated bit, I just saw the trailer for The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. I am SOOOOOO looking forward to it now. They got the sense of humor for the trailer dead-on, which shows a great deal of promise for the film itself. I'm not a movie buff, but I think the cast are mostly Brits and not the kind of superstars I'm familiar with, which is cool because then I'll get sucked into the story faster and not have the "Oh, *insert name here* doesn't really work for me as Ford...."

Gotta run.


Tuesday, November 30, 2004


Whoo hoo! It's official. Not only official, but REAL enough that my mother was able to go to her local Borders today and buy copies off of the shelf. Yeehaw! I am doing the happy dance.

(I know, I'm supposed to act all sophisticated and cool, but you know what. Don't care. You can't make me. Nah nah nah nah nah. I'm just too HAPPY :D)

I have a question.

I have a question. When did "nice" become a perjorative? You say someone is "nice" and people think you are "damning them with faint praise." It makes them sound weak, and in certain cases ugly (or at very least homely) and not terribly bright.

Example: You're trying to set someone up with your friend on a blind date. You say that she is "A nice girl with a great sense of humor." The man is practically guaranteed to run for the hills. Now both of those things are GOOD, or should be. But I doubt you'd describe Catherine Zeta Jones or Claudia Schiffer in those terms even if it's true. (It may well be accurate -- or not. I wouldn't know, haven't met the ladies in question). And then there's that old standby "Nice guys finish last." Say's who? Why? And if so, is it a BAD thing? I mean, if you finish first by cheating and being an asshole, is it good that you did. If it takes being a complete asshole to finish first should you want to?

So, when did nice become "Too Donna Reed for prime time"?

Monday, November 29, 2004

Forgive and Forget?

This is kind of two separate blogs. First, I lost yesterdays, where I chatted happily about the holiday decorating (at least that's how I remember it) and being content and happy. I also talked about how weird it was that I hadn't intended to blog all weekend, and wound up practically writing Gone With the Wind. But "the dog ate my homework". Now the last time that happened, some nice soul at Blogger (I assume) retrieved it from the ether. It was regurgitated onto the site a day or so late. Maybe it'll happen again. Maybe not. But either way, I'm happy, content, writing, enjoying the book being out, etc.

But, as with all good novels (and my life, my friends, is frequently either a very good or very BAD novel) there are currents moving below the surface. Which is why I was pondering the entry below.

Actually, what it probably is, is that last night I wrote when I'd decorated, and had eaten. So my blood sugar was high, and I was in a great mood. This morning, as I write this (and when I wrote the below), I HAVEN'T eaten, and am hungry and grumpy. But I don't GET to eat for another 30 minutes or so because I have to wait an hour after I take my meds before eating anything. So...


I grew up in a small town. Not TINY, but small. It's not just size either. Small town is an attitude. There are upsides, truly. But one of the big downsides is that you never outlive anything. If you are, for example, an alcoholic at eighteen, and go (and stay) on the wagon from 21 on, you will still be known as a "drunk" at 45. Someone will say "Now Marge, you know he's been attending that AA...." But the reputation is still there. Which is one reason I believe that if you have a wild and impetuous youth (which can be the best kind) you almost have to leave your home town to accomplish anything and be respected for it.

Your wondering where this is going? Well, there's another small town tradition -- "The apple doesn't fall far from the tree." Everything you do reflects on your parents, and your children. I HAD my wild and impetuous youth. For the most part I don't really regret it much. (One or two things, but that's 'cause people got their feelings hurt unnecessarily). But I don't want to embarrass my parents. (My son, thank God, is nearly embarrass proof after all these years). And I don't want to HEAR about it. Yeah, I did (insert event here, something on the level of dancing on the table when drinking). But it was @*@#$S 24 years ago! I've changed a little bit, and it's not just in appearance. I'm a better person. But the weirdest thing is, when you cross the city limits and go back.... there's this weird mojo. People start treating you that way and all the changes you've made, all the progress, just goes right out the window, and your an angry, rebellious kid again. UGH. Which is why I'm hesitant to do signings back in my home town. It would make my mother happy on one hand -- she really is proud of me for writing the books. On the other hand, it's just asking for trouble. So, I don't know what to do. I haven't a clue.

Saturday, November 27, 2004

Another Morning

Another morning. Time is flying by in a blur. It's fun, but its scarey. I look at how long everything seemed like it was going to take, and how fast it seems to have gone by, and I'm just stunned.

I'm enjoying my life in Texas. I have a great job, a great boss, the house is cool, and none of it was here a year ago. But at the same time, it feels like its been here forever. It feels "right." That probably doesn't make any sense, but it's true just the same.

The day after Thanksgiving is the official beginning of the Christmas season for me. I have a "rule" that you don't get to do Christmas before then because you end up shorting two of my favorite holidays if you do. In fact, I made up a song about it when I was in my teens.

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas.
'Though the leaves are green.
Take a look at the 5 and 10.
They're doing it once again.
Although we haven't yet had Halloween!

It's beginning to sound a lot like Christmas.
Carols everywhere.
And the difficult part for me
as before each year will be
Acting like I care.
Acting like I care.

Now don't get me wrong, I like Christmas (although I hate that people think they need to go into debt for six months to pay for it!). It's just that when they start it in August or September I just get TIRED of it. There are only so many Christmas carols that get played in every BLASTED store... You get the drift. BUT after Thanksgiving it's fair game.

SO, I bought Christmas cards, and James and I picked up some decorations to replace ones that got lost or destroyed in the whole move thing, and we started going at it last night. We'll finish tonight when he gets off work. I could do it during the day, but then I'd be doing it alone, and my son wants to be a part of this. Which is really seriously cool when it comes down to it.

Musically, I really like the Trans Siberian Orchestra's Christmas music, so that'll probably be the album of carols (album -- aren't I just showing MY age) we use. And I will play it, and we'll have decorated, and I will celebrate all the good things in my life, and pray for those less fortunate. And I will try not to feel guilty about the fact that I can't do and BE everything to everybody who wants and/or needs me to. Because given even the vaguest opportunity, I feel guilty. (In my case it's an Irish Catholic thing, although my Jewish friends tell me that they are quite good at it too.) I just need to repeat the mantra: "I get to be happy. I GET to be happy."

Friday, November 26, 2004


Hi guys!

I'm having a good day today. Wrote on the mss. It's one of those transition points, so it's hard going -- but I'm WRITING.

Hunter' s moved way up on the B&N standings, partly because they're the first ones shipping. Cathy said she hopes that the spread out time frame doesn't screw with whether or not we make the bestseller list(s). Frankly, I'm thrilled. I mean having to WORRY about bestseller possibilities? What horror (hah, big grin), how AWFUL (can you hear the laughter in my voice?). Seriously, it's absolute joy to have the book stuff going so well. I can't seem to get this big grin off my face.

The Abyss is an anthology that Mind Games (a/k/a Ian) is in. It's a very dark romance anthology. The person who put it together worked her butt off to put it together and get it out in a quality format before the holidays. And now she's catching crap on the lists because of the cover, etc. Ugh. I mean, I'm not a huge fan of the cover, but it was posted for well over a month before the book came out and nobody complained beforehand -- so I don't see that they get to now that it's after the fact. And the fact is, the cover gives more than a good clue as to what we're dealing with -- a very DARK book with horror themes and romance. I made sure that Nancy (the person in question) knew that I am grateful to her and her crew for their hard work, I'm not offended by the cover (dark red with black, woman in lacy negligee with a pentacle behind her -- NOTE: pentacle not pentagram. You can tell the difference because it points up not down [among other things]), and that yes, we will be featuring it on our website and have it at our signings. I'm proud of Ian, but the story isn't for the faint hearted, and it's probably one of the milder offerings in the anthology. (I don't know for sure, because I haven't read them all!) Now I won't be participating in some of the other anthologies they will be coming up with. The reason for that is that they've decided to move more toward erotica, which is just not what I'm interested in writing. But I don't, and have never, believed in censorship. Just DON'T go there. Freedom of speech and expression is a VERY big deal to me. And yes, I'm aware that we may catch some flack. I'm sorry about that. I hate that people can be closed-minded, but that is their privilege. They are just as entitled to their opinions as I am mine. I'm not going to wave the cover in front of the noses of fundamentalist ministers or ASK for trouble, but we may get it anyway. Sigh.

So, anyway, the cover is up on the website (if you want to take a look at it) featured prominently, with a write up/warning about what the anthology is about. Cathy and I decided to do that, even though we have really been wanting to feature Hunter during this first critical period, because we want to support (a) Nancy personally, and (b) freedom of speech and expression. It's more political than I like to be, but I think it's important. Wish me luck.

Had a long, lovely chat with my son last night about the Sazi world, filling him in on the backstory for various characters and the general direction we're wanting to go with it and different possibilities. The Sazi world existed before Tony was even a twinkle as it were. There are literally dozens of people, each with their own stories, and at least two major multi-book story arcs (sp?) . The trick is that most "worlds" where the world has books from different characters tend to be "softer" fantasy as opposed to our more "hard" approach. I mean, Piers Anthony, Mercedes Lackey, and Anne McCafferty have done it, but there's some question whether the publisher will let us do it. Cathy could write Tony books forever. I'd prefer to look at the world from the eyes of the people I've written about too. I think that Tony will have more books -- particularly from his new job. There will be LOTS of book fodder there. (Can't say more for fear of serious spoilers. Sorry) :)

But I want there to be books about and by Cat, Raphael, Antoine, Holly, Raven, Lucas and others where Tony is a minor character (if he appears at all). We'll have to see if I get the chance. It will depend on the publisher, the public, and my co-author. But I'm keeping my fingers crossed! (Well, not really, or I couldn't type. But you get the idea).

Before we can do the next Sazi novel though I need to finish what I'm working on, and Cathy needs to finish the edits on Kate. One day and one thing at a time. But oh, it does make me happy. Now if it'll only make me wealthy. (grin). People keep talking about rich and famous. Frankly, they can keep famous. I want to be "Roebuck" to Cathy's "Sears." Earn a very nice living, but stay more in the background.

But I'll tell you a secret. If it falls through, and we don't have the huge success. I'm still incredibly happy about it. The books exist. They're a physical reality, on the shelves and in people's minds. That is an almost indescribable joy. Don't get me wrong -- I want (and will definitely take) the money. But oh thank you God, I'm so very happy and grateful.

Best wishes to all.


Thursday, November 25, 2004


It's early Thanksgiving morning, and I wanted to post something special for my family.

Thank you!

Everything good I am, have been or will be can be traced directly back to my parents, my siblings, and my son. They taught me the meaning of real love. I am able to take the risks I need to in this life because I KNOW, absolutely, that you're there and that even if it doesn't make sense to you, and drives you crazy, you will sigh, shake your head, and wait to see how it works out for me. You're there to congratulate me when I succeed; and there to help piece my life back together when I don't.

You've taught me that if you can laugh at something every day you can get through it, and that there's something to laugh about just about everywhere. You've taught me that you can be tough without being hard or cruel (and that I'd damned well better be! :) ) I've learned from you that consistent hard work pays off, slow and steady is good; but fast and steady is better. You don't have to be perfect, just do your best Money can't buy happiness -- but life can be a real pain in the butt without it. But even when it's a pain in the butt, it's ok. Because there are people who love you and will help you get through it.

I've learned from my family not to judge people by the amount of money in their bank account, or the status of their job. You judge a person by what they do, what they believe in, and how they behave. In short -- their character. (And in our family, there are some *real* characters. :) )

I think I may be on the cusp of success. If I manage it, take a bow, because you're the ones who got me here. If I don't, I'll keep laughing, and keep trying, because that's what we do.


Wednesday, November 24, 2004


I am thankful for:

My life.
My family.
My friends.
I have a warm home, plenty of good food.
A sense of humor.
Reasonably good health.
The world we live in.
The freedoms I too often take for granted.
The ability to read and write.

And so very much more.

Welcome to Pre-Thanksgiving Mode

Welcome to Pre-Thanksgiving Mode. I'm going to be off-line for most of the holiday weekend as far as posting, but hope to WRITE. The last few days have been seriously weird. Great good stuff, then equally pain in the patooty stuff. Kinda hard on the old psyche.

Went home at lunch yesterday and one of my cats was seriously sick, had to rush him to the vet in the afternoon. He's on high-powered antibiotics. We're hoping it'll help. But he is a very old pussycat (somewhere around 14 or 15). So I'm keeping an eye on him and keeping my fingers crossed.

The book looks great. We got an e-mail from our editor because she hadn't received HERS yet (weird that B&N shipped before the TOR copies went). She asked if it was pretty. I pointed out that it was like asking a mother if her baby is beautiful. DUH. That it was GORGEOUS and that I'm not in the least bit prejudiced! Teased her a little. She did get herself a copy by the end of hte day. Not surprisingly, she agreed. :)

It's cold and drab today. But maybe that'll encourage me to get a lot done. I hope so. I really have a ton to do. Not so much at regular work, I'm fairly caught up there, but real life... Ugh it's depressing just thinking of how long the list has gotten. And some of this stuff is really critical too.

I'm back to trying to find a workable balance in my life. I am constantly juggling my needs, the needs of the people I love, work, ordinary life b.s., and writing. It's hard because everything always wants more time than I have to give. I don't want to be selfish, but I also turn into a raging hag when I take care of everything else but myself. I don't mean to, but I do. I suspect that this inability to balance it out and maintain my good humor is one of the main reasons I have such a hard time in relationships. I'm very good at living alone. I'm rarely, if ever, bored. I am a massively difficult person to live with. I feel sorry for my son. He's had to put up with it off and on for years.

But then the question becomes, can you change? Particularly, can you change your basic nature? I told a former friend once (the brains fall out lady) that I thought a person can move along the continuum a little bit, with a massive effort. But on a scale of one to ten. If you're a 1, you may move to a three with hard work. You won't be seeing nine. Ainta gonna happen. I still believe that's true. So, my social abilities are a solid 2.5 naturally. (There are worse. Really, there are. Just not too many :) ). I would like to think I've nudged them to a 4, maybe 4.5. But when I'm tired, or having problems, life is not cooperating, etc. I slip back down. I think that's normal. But it is discouraging. Fortunately I have people in my life who accept me the way I am. I am very lucky, and very grateful.

I am also a space cadet. I left my glasses at home. Need to go get them NOW if I'm going to be able to do any work today. Later.


Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Hi Guys!

Good morning! I was going to post a "serious" blog where I pondered change, forgiveness (mostly forgiving yourself) accepting your own faults and all kinds of DEEEEEEEEP stuff. BUT, you've been spared. THE FIRST SHIPMENT OF THE BOOKS HAVE ARRIVED!!!!!! We got them from Barnes & Noble. Haven't received our copies from Tor yet, but that's OK. THE BOOKS HAVE ARRIVED. THEY'RE SHIPPING!!! (Can you tell I'm excited.)

This is just what I needed. Life had been a bit hard lately, and this was JUST the perfect thing to make me feel less bad about myself for not being perfect, being bad at some of the more "practical" stuff, etc. HAPPY TIMES!!!! (Cie is now doing the happy dance).

Took the first book from the box and signed it with my full name -- that copy is going to my parents with a note that tries to tell them how much I love them. We're doing a charity thing where we're auctioning off a "reader's group" package of 5 or 6 autographed books, promo pens, limited edition bookmarks (that Cathy and I designed), and a list of suggested discussion questions. This is a "thank you" to Laurell K. Hamilton and is being donated to one of her favorite animal charities. I hope it does well. The arc auction did, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed (when I'm not typing).

ANYWAY, the hard times are hard to get through, but THERE WAS A POT OF GOLD AT THE END OF THE RAINBOW THIS TIME!!!!


Monday, November 22, 2004

Good Morning

Happy birthday to me.
Happy birthday to me.
Happy BIRTHDAY, happy birthday.
Happy birthday to me!

Hoping for a great day. Going to a training session out of town for most of it. Yesterday was the day my son James and I celebrated. Had a lot of fun. Good presents. Thanks to Everybody!

One of the things that's going on at the RT conference we'll be attending in April are a pair of costume balls. I bought the fabric to make my costume. Decided on a rennaisance vampire convertable to a princess for the costumes. I love the clothing of that era AND it's easy to make. I didn't really "fit" well in the SCA, but I do miss the garb. Go figure. Of course, it was a very long time ago and I was doing the single mom thing. Maybe I'll try again sometime now that James is an adult.

Uh oh, lightning and thunder. Time to shut down the computer. Have a great day all!


Sunday, November 21, 2004

A Long Time Ago, in a Galaxy Far, Far Away...

All right, maybe Illinois in my late teens and early twenties isn't QUITE that far away, but it sometimes feels like it.

Anyway, I've been thinking. The kind of thoughts that lead to a serious and admittedly odd blog. So, you've been warned. If you don't want serious, and you can't handle odd, stop right here.


Ok, if you didn't stop, it's your own darned fault!

When I was nineteen or twentyish, in a bar, I had a discussion about being different. One of the men flirting with us (my friend and I) got incredibly incensed, and said something along the lines of "what makes you think YOU'RE so special?" (obviously didn't do his chances at scoring any good :) ). I pointed out that different and special are two completely separate concepts. Special implies better. Different is simply "not the same." Apples are different from oranges. That doesn't make them better -- or worse either for that matter. Just not the same.

Society when I was growing up (at least in my schools in a smallish town in Illinois) (and I think maybe now as well) places/placed a premium on "fitting in" and being the same. There was a significant social price for being "different" "odd" or "weird." All of which I was.

When I was in high school an aunt came to visit and said to me "These are the best years of your life." And I responded. "Then just shoot me now!"

Fortunately for her (and even more fortunately for me!). They weren't. Not even close. My life continually gets better. Which was why I was able to tell my son. "This too shall pass." And MEAN it. School (through high school/compulsory public education) is appx. 12 years out of your life, early in your life. Then it's over. You're approximately 18 and out in the world. How sad it would be (in my opinion) if "the best years of your life" are over before you're even able to drink, vote, and so many other things? I mean the average life span is something like 80, so you're not even halfway through. Do you really want the whole rest of your time on earth to be anticlimactic? EWWWW.

I mean, if you can, have fun in school. Enjoy every minute of it. If you can't. (And a lot of us can't), know it has a limited shelf life, it will be over soon, and that things DO get better.

Another thing, in the movie X-Men 2, there were two scenes that stuck in my mind. The first is when the parents ask their son if he could "Just try not being a mutant?" That was so sad to me. Because it denies all the individuality that makes him special just to fit in and make things comfortable. And for the record. It's not possible. You can *try* and sometimes you can even *pass* but it kills a little piece of you and degrades who you really are. Which leads to the second scene, where Nightcrawler is talking to Mystique and points out that she can look like anyone. She could "pass." So why didn't she just look like everybody else all the time?" And she answered that she shouldn't have to.

I think about this stuff sometimes. Because I think creativity is important. And creativity by its nature means doing something "different" and going somewhere new that people haven't gone before, or looking at things differently. That's the only way progress gets made. Somebody had to "discover" fire, and they didn't do that sitting on their heinie under a stack of furs going "*$#@$ it's cold!" OK, so maybe they did start OUT there, but they didn't STAY there. They got up off their tookus (sp?) and DID something. And they probably failed at first. Maybe a lot of times. But eventually it worked.

I tell my son that it does no good to turn the steering wheel if the vehicle isn't moving.

Every day is a new start. If you don't like where things are, today is your chance to change them. Oh, and actions have consequences. Even inaction has consequences -- so you can't just get away with saying "I'm not responsible for this fire crap -- I was just sitting here huddled under my skins minding my own business..."

OK, so much for serious. Have a great day everybody.

Happy Birthday Cathy

Happy birthday to you.
Happy birthday to you.
Happy BIRTHDAY dear Cathy.
Happy birthday to you. :)

Saturday, November 20, 2004


Hi all! Cie here.

Time is flying by. Just a few more days until the book is out. We haven't received our copies yet, but I'm jumping up and down with impatience to get them. We've decided not to actually post the cover of the next book until people have actually had the chance to get the first one. I can understand the logic, but argh! I want them out! I want the next one finished and sold. I want, I want, I WANT......

I feel like a little kid throwing a tantrum. It's funny. Before I got caught up in the actual process of getting published I had no CLUE how long everything takes. Patience has never been my best thing, but I'm learning. SLOWLY. Be patient with me. :D

The other day I stopped by one of the sites that has sample chapters and read it. Because of all that's been going on, it's been quite a while since I just sat down and read one of the completed mss. As I looked at it I had one of those "board across the head" moments (not literally, but you know what I mean). "This is actually a *book*. I mean, it's *readable*. I'D buy it. Whoa."

I know that probably sounds stupid. To understand you'd have to know that I've spent my whole life with all these stories running through my head. I've always wanted to write fiction, tell my stories, and *hopefully* have people like them. Make people *think* about things -- like how even though somebody may have a completely different viewpoint than yours, to them it is a perfectly valid viewpoint. They have reasons behind it, facts and experience that support it. It's all a matter of perspective. One of my friends who is also a writer, Tami Cowden, told me once that "The villian is the hero of his own story." That's why I am not likely to ever "draw moral conclusions" as one of the reviewers said she wanted us to. I mean, who am I to say? I know what I believe. I have very strong opinions about right and wrong; about religion. (Not so much about politics... it gives me a headache.) But just because I believe it doesn't mean it's right for everybody else. It's right for me, and that has to be enough. Of course a former friend once told me "You're so open minded your brains are going to fall out!" She meant it as an insult, and was really incensed when I took it as a compliment. :p

I want our characters to feel real, as though they're somebody you might run into at the mall or a bar. Weird and quirky maybe, but real. I mean, I can actually "hear" Linda going "EEEW" over the goose poop on her Jimmy Choo shoes in my mind. I can "see" Liselle doing the limbo in her motorized wheelchair. They only exist in our minds and on paper, but they still feel valid to me. And they have things to say. Not always things I agree with either. I don't want the books to be a forum to "preach to the masses." The masses are doing just fine without it -- or, well, as well as they ever do.

That's one of the good things about the partnership. Cathy and I come from different backgrounds and have very diverse opinions on things and we don't always agree. So we can cover all the bases, or at least most of them.

Another thing we really try for is diversity. Our villains are bad guys because they personally are a rotten individual, not because of their cultural background, ancestry or religious beliefs. Our "good guys" and "bad guys" come in all shapes, sizes, colors, genders and belief systems and backgrounds. On the other hand, its quite likely that we (and some of the characters too) won't necessarily be "politically correct." Because a lot of people just aren't. I mean, I try not to be an ass, but I'm frequently not PC.

OK, looking at this post I should probably say now that all of this is MY opinion. I can't speak for Cathy here. But that's ok, because she doesn't hesitate to speak for herself. :)

On a completely different tack, I've been posting on various boards and have met some truly remarkable people. Make me feel downright boring they do. But I find I'm not as worried about that as I used to be. I've lived long enough to my mind to deserve and have EARNED boring. Got a whole bunch of my "not boring" stuff out of the way.

My mom (or my sister, I don't remember which) told me once that "If anybody actually wrote your biography, nobody'd buy it. They'd put it in fiction." Which is, more or less, true. For one thing, as Diane put it. "Things happen to people. THINGS happen to you." I'm still hoping for the big lottery win. I mean, I've been hit by lightning, and they say the odds are not that dissimilar...

So, anyway, I'm ready for peace and quiet personally and lots of action and excitement in and about the books. I'll just have to see if it works out that way... and be patient.

Friday, November 19, 2004

Hi Jim!!!!

Hi Jim!!!!

I'm so glad somebody actually read the blog and responded! I was beginning to feel like the tree that fell in the forest. I have to say, the whole writing thing is exciting, fun, and a little bit scary (kind of roller-coaster scary, where you're in line going "Oh sh**" but then afterwards do the "OOOOh let's do it again!"). I'll talk to Cathy about the German link you suggested -- AND about posting the new cover, which I've forgotten how to do.

I am trying to keep in touch with people, but sometimes it's just time to move on. I'm also trying to accept that sometimes people *have* to learn the hard way, and the best advice in the world won't help if they won't listen to it. (Not that I actually GIVE the best advice in the world, but STILL...)

Anyway, thank you so much for your posts. I hope you'll keep stopping by!


Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Another Rainy Tuesday

Another rainy and gloomy day. Apparently winter is the rainy season in this part of Texas, although frankly we've had a very wet year since I arrived this spring. But it doesn't matter. I'm looking on the bright side! It's light jacket weather for me -- in MID-NOVEMBER! I've only had one day that was cold enough that the body was in pain, stiff and rebellious about moving. Normally by this time of year I'm having to take hot baths periodically just to keep moving. I've had people say that it's psychosomatic. To which I respond horse sh**, bull hockey, and several less printable things. Because a lot of it has to do with circulation, which is affected by the thyroid and pituitary problems. So, "nah, nah, nah nah nah. Plttt! and SO THERE!" (That was childish, but really fun! :) ) I really am in a very good mood. Funloving and snarky -- the kind where you want to blow soap bubbles, if that makes any sense at all. (It may not.)

First, the previous book in the Tor series we're in hit the USA Today Bestseller's List. Since we're doing better on Barnes & Noble, and Amazon than that book I'm very excited and hopeful! It would be seriously cool to make a bestseller's list with our second book! I'm trying not to get ahead of myself, but judging from what we can find out about orders (there's all kinds of formulas for Amazon ranking, B&N ranking, a phone number you can call about Ingrams, etc.) it looks as though we're going to earn out our advance straight out of the box. This would be SERIOUSLY COOL! It also bodes well for our future career.

Also, we saw a color ad that was placed in "Affaire de Coeur" a major romance magazine. It's absolutely gorgeous, and is solely for Hunter, not the whole line. I tried to forward it to Mom, but it didn't go through, so Cathy printed her out a color copy on photo paper that I can send with the RT magazine with the big review.

I don't know if I already mentioned it or not (may have, haven't re-read previous posts), but in our web search we came across a group in Germany (the text was in German) where they are fans who are on pins and needles waiting for OUR BOOK. The site was about Hunter! Way cool! Cathy and I both responded. (She had someone who could translate.) I responded in English.

The Werewolf Cafe is going to run the first chapter of Moon's Web for the next full moon. We were very well received last time. This is very exciting stuff. Also, we heard about some charity doings that we may be contributing to along with some *very* big names in the business next year. We've been invited to be on a panel. Cathy's speaking at the RT conference, and working as judge for a contest. LOTS of good things, good news. HAPPY HAPPY.

Things on the personal front are coming along. Not perfect, but improving. It's slow going, but it IS going. One day at a time. My health isn't perfect, but it's hanging in there. Some of my relationships are a little strained because of distance and things I have to do for my health and to get enough rest. That makes me sad, but I really DO have to take care of myself. It's not something that anyone else can do for me. I only get one body, and I have to keep it running as well as I can. I know it's inconvenient for other people (believe me, it's not exactly easy for me either), but it is necessary. Part of the problem is that I don't *look* sick, another is that it's cumulative. No one of the things wrong with me causes the whole problem. UGH.

ENOUGH OF THAT. It's ruining my bubble blowing mood! :) My birthday is coming up on the 22nd. The book is being shipped on the 30th. The first anthology is out (with Ian in it). I have been WRITING!!! (Actual page production that is LEADING TO THE CONCLUSION OF A DRAFT MANUSCRIPT!!!) I REFUSE to be bummed! Tonight I may even get the chance to READ! I love reading, but lately I've been too tired at the end of the day. Tonight I feel GOOD.

Well, I will go now. If anyone is reading this, have a GREAT, TERRIFIC, WONDERFUL evening -- because I surely do intend to!


Friday, November 12, 2004

Feeling Better/Personal Stuff


I was just grumpy as all get out the last several days. Today's better. Don't know why. It's cold and gloomy outside -- but then again, cold and gloomy down here is still warmer than I'm used to this time of year. No snow yet either. Which means the body hasn't been hurting like it usually does this time of year. So, while I've been tired, I'm not in pain, which is a major big plus!

Anyway, apologies for the all round growly tone.

It's fun, we got a translation of the German on the site where they were discussing Hunter. Cathy and I each posted a reply to them. I'm just thrilled that there's so much buzz about the book. I sent an e-mail to most of the people I'm still in touch with in Illinois and Denver with updates about how the writing is going and with the picture of the new cover (which is WAY cool).

Cathy's doing a great job of amping up the romantic/sexual tension in the vampire book. Good news. I just have to admit that since I'm determinedly single at this point in time I have a hard time thinking romantically. It's just not where my mind is at -- particularly when I'm tired. When there's somebody in my life, I can manage romantic quite nicely. But I've been alone for a while now and I guess I'm just out of the habit. :) Maybe I need to work on that? ;)

Anyway, we've gotten through the week. It's not quite 5:00, but I'm thinking positive! Looking forward to a great weekend.

Everybody take care.


Thursday, November 11, 2004

Hi Guys

This is only partly a business/writing blog today. Kind of want to write some personal stuff too. And, since nobody seems to be logging in to look, I don't figure it's a problem. I'm thinking that we may get more traffic on this after the book comes out -- but maybe not. You just never know.

Writing first. 19 Days until Hunter comes out. Today Cathy sent me something fun. A site, in Germany (in German) that has our cover, a description of the book, and (I think, since I can't read German I'm not sure) reviews of the book. It's just wild. I guess one of the copies from Frankfurt got out and about.

The edited synopsis went out on Kate. We've come up with a new proposed title "Touch of Evil." The changes to up the amps on the romance angle are actually fairly small at this point, which is good.

We've gotten the cover for Moon's Web. VERY nice. Makes me happy to see it. I'm going to TRY to put it up. If I can't, I'll have Cathy do it. (HA). The draft we have has the original Hunter quote from Laurell on the front. That bugs me, so we're trying to see if she'll give us a quote for the second book (she and Darla have read it). We'll see.

We found out that they're planning a print run of 95,000-100,000 books. THIS IS HUGE. Mid list is generally 40,000. That they're printing this many means they really believe in the book and the pre-orders have been hefty. Actually, judging by the numbers we've been able to scrounge up, we're already at the earn-out point -- and the book isn't even on the shelves yet!!!!

I was hoping to get the first draft of the book I've been working on (The Raveners) done by the end of the month, but the body has been acting up. I'm so tired a lot of the time that I can't think clearly -- let alone creatively. I'm going to make an appointment with my new doctor (I moved to Texas, switched insurance, and am starting over. UGH). I think a big part of the problem is that it's time to up the thyroid medicine again. I'm feeling stupid, slow, and frustrated. I'm trying not to let it make me grumpy, but that's part and parcel of the problem.

I've been thinking (always dangerous) about the fact that the Sazi world is so much more in line with what's popular now. And I've been thinking "How would I feel if we just end up doing Sazi books for the next 20 years, just working within that world?" I think that the Sazi may be our major breadwinners, with the other books being supplemental. But we have a large enough world with enough people in there to make it stay interesting. People like Mercedes Lackey have made wonderful careers out of one world. I do worry that the stories STAY interesting. the first series of Dune was great -- the follow up returns, (in my opinion) not so much. A lot of the Pern books were good, but one or two were kind of tired (again in my opinion). So we'll need to work really hard to keep them all interesting.

I do hope that we can put out one non-Sazi book a year too (at least). But if the Sazi make us a good living they'll be a joy and be gravy.

I was also thinking about Denver. I was very happy there for a very long time, and there are things I miss. But my present and future are (at least for the foreseeable future) here. I'm not up to the heavy traffic. I can't afford the high cost of living (comparatively). I really need the slower pace. I've found a great job with an incredibly good boss. I do hope to stay in touch with people back there. But frankly, it doesn't necessarily seem that a lot of them are that interested in keeping in touch with me. So maybe its time to move on. But I don't want it to seem to people that I'm letting success go to my head, either. Does that make sense? On the other hand, mostly I'm keeping in touch by e-mail because I'm spending my time at home either (a) asleep; (b) writing (not as much as I'd like because of a); and (c) doing things with James. A lot of people really don't like e-mail as much as the phone, so that may be part of the problem.

Anyway, I don't want to be a bummer, and don't want to be bummed. Things are turning around. It's taking time, but things are going to be very, very, good. I just have to pray hard and hang on. I can do that.

Monday, November 08, 2004

Trying again :)

Good news, Hunter's Moon ships in 22 days (WOO HOO). The website is getting lots of hits. We got contacted by another Australian bookseller wanting to highlight our book in their catalogue and asking for us to list them as having the book available on our website. (Which we are happy to do). All the reviews thus far have been dynamite, which is so very cool.

The anthology with Mind Games is coming out on the same day that Hunter's Moon ships, which is cool also. I'm not thrilled with the cover, but you can't win them all. Cathy likes it. I think I'm just too Catholic to be comfortable with the pentagram, particularly since my story at least has absolutely nothing to do with any religion (Christian or non-Christian).

Neutral news -- Kate needs tweaking to make the romance more integral to the plot. Frustrating, but Cathy and I discussed some things and she's going to work on it. I think the reason that this book fought us so hard was that it was never really intended to be romantic, but more horror. So we had to go back and stir that in and it didn't work as well as I would like. I'm just not really a romantic type of person, so that part is very hard for me. Still working on the names too as "Deadly Rapture" just doesn't do it for me, or Cathy either for that matter.

Bad news -- can't go visit the family for Thanksgiving. Ah well, maybe Christmas. By then the book will have been out a bit...

Good News -- the manuscript I'm working on is rolling along nicely, which makes me very happy. I don't know if it's any good. It could be absolute dreck. But it's in my head and insists on being written, so write it I will. It is much darker than most of the stuff we've put out so far, so it may have to appear under a different name. Or not. We'll see. If it's total dreck it may just get filed in the cabinet for review and revision later. Or filed in the round file.

Everybody have a great day.


Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Welcome to November


Welcome to November. Lots of good news.

Halloween was great. My mom had a good birthday, and Cathy and I had a great time dealing with the folks over at The Werewolf Cafe. It was a howl! The folks there are great.

Let's see, where to start...

We got our review in Romantic Times. 4.5 stars and a TOP PICK. WHOO HOO. Got another great review from Harriet Klausner -- five stars! The good reviews and the publicity work have gotten us under 10,000 on Amazon, which means we are selling well. Cathy has found out the procedure for how many sales equals what rank. She explained it to me yesterday, but, alas, my memory is a sieve and the information is gone this morning. Sigh. Still, it very much looks like we'll "earn out" our advance -- which is WAY COOL.

The charity auction for an autographed ARC of Hunter's Moon for Granite City APA (Laurell K. Hamilton's charity auction) is going well. It's currently fetching $110.50 -- not bad for a 6.99 paperback! (BIG GRIN). THANKS to everyone who has been bidding!

I'm amazed at all of the good charity work I've been hearing about other authrs doing. It makes me very happy to know there are such good people out there!

I can't believe it's just one month until the book is out! WOW has the time been flying. We'll get our author copies early, of course. Cathy has been sending out the postcards to the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America list in groups. I'm in awe of her ability when it comes to publicity.

I'm hoping to get to send out cards to a buch of the folks in Denver. If not, I'm going to do an e-mail to everyone with the photo embedded. I'm just very happy and proud, and I DO want to do my part to support the book.

With regard to other projects --

The Abyss (Dark Romance Anthology) with "Mind Games" is coming out this month.
Hunter's Moon is coming out December 12 (WOO HOO).
Secrets (Mystery Anthology) with "Apple" is coming out in (I think) January.
Moon's Web is coming out in August, 2005.

After Happily Ever After -- we're looking at getting an illustrator and reorganizing it before we try to sell it.

Kate/The Thrall/Deadly Rapture (Can you tell we're having a hard time finding a good name for this one!) is currently with the agent. Keeping our fingers crossed that she'll find a good home for it!

Cathy is currently working on the re-write of Blue Lights while I am currently working on the first draft of The Raveners.

All in all a very busy, productive, and good time.

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Greetings and Salutations

Hi! It's been a few days. Life has been very busy. Some good things, some bad things, but definitely busy.

First off -- HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my Mom on Halloween. And also Happy Birthday to Gordon. I don't know if either of them will read this (probably not), but still...

Let's see -- the reviews on Hunter's Moon keep coming in. We're getting good solid reviews, not necessarily top marks, but there have been no bad reviews at all. It's generally 4 out of 5 (stars, hearts, etc.). Not too shabby! I think it will help sales. We're certainly seeing enough traffic on the website!

Merrilee has received Kate and After Happily Ever After. Keeping my fingers crossed on Kate. Happily doesn't appear to be something they're going to handle for us. Apparently humor is very tricky. I think she liked it, but isn't quite sure what to do with it. No surprise there. They did have a couple of useful formatting suggestions though, which is cool.

Another bit of news that was no surprise was that there wasn't a lot of interest in the translations for Hunter yet. Can't say as I'm shocked. Until the English version comes out and sets the world on fire they won't want to take a risk. We're a total unknown. Still... someday.... :)

On a completely non-business note, THE RED SOX WON THE WORLD SERIES!!!!

Well, better run.


Tuesday, October 19, 2004

And the Good News Keeps Coming

More good reviews came in. This is obviously good news.

Because we have completed Moon's Web ahead of schedule (including the edits) and it's ready to go it got bumped up in the production line to August of 2005 -- in place of a book where an author didn't meet their deadline. Ahem... WHOO HOO. August is a great spot in the schedule. Nor does it make me unhappy to have money come in sooner as opposed to later (I'm a little mercenary about it -- so sue me).

We previously sent "After Happily Ever After" to the agent to see what they thought about selling it. They have some suggestions, which we're happy to address. Cathy e-mailed for some specifics. Once we've got that information, we'll get to work. I always enjoy working on Happily because it's a humor book and very lighthearted.

Still haven't heard anything on Kate, but that's not really a surprise. It worked the same way with Hunter originally. Generally it seems that we hear what she wants to change, or we hear results. Anyway, I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Other Authors/Cie's Opinion

I'm hoping this won't devolve into a rant.

I love reading other authors' work.

I have particular favorites. Some are paranormal. Some aren't.

There are things that I find I'm looking for:

1) Creativity/unpredictability.

2) Believable characters (even if they get into unbelievable situations)

3) The characters are human (even if they're non-human physically), screw up, aren't so powerful that nothing and nobody can stand up to them. (The nosy P.I. gets shot and winds up in the hospital, the vampire winds up hiding in a tool shed because he would've gotten caught out after dawn).

4) A plot that holds water.

5) If there is sex, it's in character for the character's personality. Although frankly, I prefer not to have a (bad pun inteded) blow by blow. I personally much prefer the "and off to bed" and wake up in the morning going "Whoo boy that was fun! Let's do that again sometime." That's not necessarily what the public or my co-author (or the publishers) prefer, but we work it out as a compromise. Maybe there'll be an intense sex scene, but not LOTS of them, or maybe it's a tease and they don't. This is one we take individually with each book.

6) Even if I don't agree with where the characters have gone in their lives and choices, I should at least be able to believe they would do that as written. No "cheating," i.e., writing yourself into a corner and then bending the rules of reality to get yourself out of it.

7) People die. Particularly if there are huge big baddies around. You can't protect all of your characters all of the time and expect the villain to be scary. There has to be a real threat. If your hero/heroine ALWAYS saves the day, there's no tension.

I've seen even brilliant authors fall into this/these traps and am so disappointed when they do. I keep hoping that there will be some HUGE BIG BAD THING to wipe out half of the characters, damaging the hero/heroine to the point where they have human weaknesses and limited power again.

SO, this is a challenge to anybody (probably only my partner, since I don't think anybody else is reading this yet, but HEY I can hope) that if we start doing this they are to send me a letter or e-mail with the subject heading "STOP THAT!!!" Or "Danger Will Robinson, Danger, Danger!" and tell me which of the above I'm doing wrong. PLEASE. Our website is (the e-mail link is there); current e-mail addresses are: and .

Also, when we get further along and (hopefully) actually have (gasp, oh please pretty please) a fan base, we will also want to know if there is a market for things like a newsletter, contests, etc.

Anyway, gotta go now. But PROMISE I'll get those e-mails!