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!


Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Stuff and Nonsense

Good morning!

I'm trying to gather my thoughts. I'm a little muzzy-headed the past couple of days. I pushed myself a little too hard and my body is making me pay for it. Sigh.

I've been reading a wonderful set of books. They're called the Dresden Chronicles and they're by Jim Butcher. Really enjoying them a lot. They're wildly funny as well as adventurous. Makes me feel a little inadequate by comparison. Then again, I feel that way a fair amount of the time anyway.

We have gotten 10 reviews on Hunter so far. None of them have ranked it lower than four stars (or hearts or angels or whatever). That is a VERY good sign and makes me happy. The review process was funny. One reviewer OBVIOUSLY hadn't read the book at all -- got the plot completely wrong. But most of them are being very serious and careful. You can tell from what they wrote that they really did read it and like it. That's gratifying. One of the most thoughtful though seemed to think that we should be drawing moral conclusions at the end of the book. That is SO not likely to happen. I want our characters to have different moral compasses and ideas. I do not want to impose my morals on either the characters or the readers. Cathy feels the same way. Good thing too, because she and I have very different viewpoints on a great number of things.

I've been getting in touch with some people in my past lately. I'm trying to play "connect the dots" and figure out who I was, am, and where I am going. I've changed a lot over the years. Most of it has been good, but I need a little breathing space to assimilate it all. That may not make sense, but it's true nonetheless. I'm also trying to decide what kind of "style" I want as far as my clothing, hair, etc. I let that go for a long time, but the interest has resurrected. There are people who would say that's a sign my self-esteem is improving. Maybe so, maybe no. As far as I'm concerned, it just is a fact that needs to be dealt with.

Well, this has turned into more of a journal entry than a blog, sorry about that.


Friday, October 08, 2004

Guten Tag

I figured I'd go ahead and use that as the greeting because, unless I am mistaken, the Frankfurt festival is underway and Maja is busily trying to sell the foreign rights to Hunter on our behalf. Very exciting stuff. We've also received another killer review (pun intended).

Both of the short stories have been shipped off to their separate anthologies. Cathy is now getting back to Blue Lights and I am working on The Raveners. We've been discussing which way to go on the next Sazi book and are keeping our fingers crossed about the vampire novel that is currently with the agent. The postcards are in and are being sent out to the Sci-Fi/Fantasy mailing list. The RT article is out and the website is at approximately 1,162 hits. All in all, things are moving just exactly the way we've wanted them to. Cathy has the second article up on the website. All in all, it's just amazing how well the writing is going.

On a personal note my health seems to be holding up OK -- better than it had been for a while at least. I have a nice, quiet life. My son is doing well. Life is really pretty good and I'm grateful for it.


Tuesday, October 05, 2004

News and Stuff

Good news. We're back up in the early adopters list on Amazon. We'd dropped a bit, and were afraid we'd fall off the list but WOO HOO are bouncing back. Don't know if it's because of the postcard campaign that Cathy just started, or what. But still very good news.

Also, my esteemed partner has been selected to be a judge in a writing contest. Big contest, very serious, major honor. (Polite applause and whistles here).

I've been reading quite a bit over the past couple of weeks. I find that going through the publishing process has made me a much more critical reader. This is a good and a bad thing. But it is reassuring to see that the problems I have are common, fixable, and that I'm doing as well as a lot of the folks out there (but still have scads of room for improvement).

Found a very interesting website where they have archives of all sorts of interviews with authors. It's called "The Writer's Craft." One of my new goals now is to be interviewed on it! (Big grin).

Have to go now.


Monday, October 04, 2004

Welcome to Another Week

Hi! Welcome to another week.

Good news.

1) Apple (a short story) has been accepted for publication in an anthology. This is a mystery anthology, which means that we're getting at least one little toe into that market. Whoo hoo. Cathy is doing the edits because I'm really not the short story type of person. But this is still VERY good news.

2) Ian edits are being reviewed by Cathy before the story goes into the dark romance anthology.

3) After Happily Ever After has been sent on to the agent who is looking it over. (Whoo hoo again).

4) Again, Kate is with the agent.

5) Cathy and I had a much deserved celebratory lunch at Red Lobster. We've been working VERY hard. During the lunch we went over the sticking points for The Raveners/I Will Remember. So, I've been working on that one while she works on Blue Lights. All in all, we are moving rapidly forward.

6) The hit counter on the website is well over a thousand. (Whoo hoo!)

All in all, very busy with very gratifying things!

Gotta run! Otherwise I won't get any more writing done today, and I really do hope to!