Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Hi Guys!

OK we're counting down until I am a full-time writer. Very exciting stuff. Day job is still crazy for these last few days, but we're hanging in there.

At home I'm trying to get organized so that when big day one of the new full-time gig rolls around I will be ready to roll and make the most of it!

Cathy and I are now fully-fledged members of HWA -- the Horror Writers Association. Seriously cool stuff!

The guy who came to hook up my cable access at home was a jerk (apparently) didn't like the dog (ah well, she lives here, he doesn't), kept leaving the door open so that James had to frantically make sure the cats didn't get out (UGH) and disconnected my speakers, the printer, etc. and didn't bother to hook them back up. I have to sit down when I have a few minutes and get everything back the way it's supposed to be. Blasted nuisance, but still I'm glad to have the home access back up.

The gremlins are still stalking my life and undoing my progress, but I WILL PREVAIL! It really is hard though, trying so hard to make progress and seeing everything coming unraveled behind you. Who was the Greek in the myths who was punished by making him push a boulder perpetually up a hill? I can't remember the name. I keep thinking Cicephus (sp?) but I'm probably wrong. Tantalus was the guy who was punished by having food (an apple) perpetually just out of reach and water lapping at his feet until he bent down to get some and then it, too, would pull out of reach. Which is how the word Tantalyze came into being. Blast it -- I HATE not being able to remember things! It's going to drive me crazy until I remember enough to look it up. Ah well.

Well I'm wishing you all happines. Have to get back to it!


Sunday, March 26, 2006

Stuff and Nonsense

Hi guys! I am blogging in the last of the last ditch efforts to avoid the bookkeeping crap that needs to be done at the office, and the household repair crap that needs to be done at home. Besides, you want to hear from me. You know you do. (LOL)

Let's see.

First, Jim, your books are on the way, but I want to send you a replacement. Damon told me to write something "really cool" to you in the flyleaf, and for reasons known only to God my mind went totally literal and the only thing I could think of was "Ice Cubes." I swear! (Often and fluently). But it was the end of a long day, and I was in one of those surreal, frivolous moods. I meant it in fun, but decided afterward that it probably wasn't appropriate. So let me send you a replacement. It'll make me feel better. E-mail me with the address.

Shawn, YES indeedy. The sequel to Touch of Evil is currently in process on my D drive on the computer at home. Progress has been slow because of stuff at work and some health issues, but progress IS being made and I'm very excited about how much I'll be able to accomplish when I switch to writing full-time in about 9 days.

Due to circumstances beyond my control the fence situation is still being a pain in the patootie. At this point I'm so incredibly frustrated I can barely speak coherently. It feels like every time I start to make some progress around the house the gremlins follow me around -- not only undoing what I've done, but wrecking more things besides. UGH.

Lots of good things coming up. We're going to a conference in San Antonio next month and will get to meet up with Anna (which is seriously cool). We decided that I should go ahead and register for RT and go if my health permits. People keep telling me the process I need done isn't too big of a deal, so hopefully I'll be fine to go. Then there's Writer's Weekend, and Butcher Con (I absolutely love the Harry Dresden books!) and trying to go with James up to Denver for a bit... Oy, I'm getting tired just thinking of it all. But it's all good and happy stuff.

Oh, in case anyone is wondering, customer reviews on Touch of Evil are very mixed. It's dark. Heck, originally it started as a horror story. Very good v. evil. And the heroine is prickly and very, very strong. All of these things mean that people either love it or hate it. Reviews tend to be either 5 star or 1 star and nothing in between. Had a lot of people say "stick with the Sazi."

That honestly doesn't upset me. Books are very much like people. Different types appeal to different people. If you threw a party with all the characters from our books Cathy would be chatting guns with Tony and Carmine. I'd probably be in the corner joking with Raphael and Liselle (Linda's Mom -- the one who did the limbo) and sighing with regret over the fact that Kate and Tom ducked out early because of an early flight. The people who like one character or book may well not like another. It's OK. All we can do is write the best books we can and hope that each finds a home with at least a few folks who enjoy being along for the ride.

Well, gotta run. Like it or not the work will NOT do itself (darn it!) Hope everybody is having a great time. Yo, thanks for buying the book. Hope you enjoy it!!


Friday, March 24, 2006


Sorry I haven't written more. Life continues to be hectic. Let's see, good news first:

Signing tomorrow. :) Waldenbooks in San Angelo where Damon takes very good care of everybody. Evidently the local newspaper may or may not show up, so I'll actually have to do the whole make-up thing and wear red so that I don't look like a corpse in any pictures. I will also be bringing the digital camera so I can take pics of people who come by (assuming anyone does).

I indulged myself big time to celebrate making the lists. My entire adult life I've wanted an actual LazyBoy recliner. I got one. I sink into that thing and my body just goes limp and relaxed. WONDERFUL stuff. Of course it's HUGE. It looked big in the showroom, but there's big and there's BIG. Still, it was the one that actually fit -- right length from hip to knee, right height to support my neck, everything.

We signed another three book deal with Tor. VERY EXCITING. Happy happy. We get to work with Anna Genoese some more. :D She rocks! Of course, I could be prejudiced a bit -- after all she is the discerning soul who decided to buy OUR books in the first place. (LOL). I do wish we'd get the edits back on Cat. I'm honestly scared to death about it. I just won't feel "safe" until I see that the book is really going to make it. James, who has read it, says that it's a great book and I worry too much. But he's my son, and he's prejudiced. Cat (Howling Moon) was by far the HARDEST of the books to write so far. There was so much to take into account, things that were said in passing that had to be incorporated, a time line that was set in concrete. (Deep breaths, stop hyperventilating LOL)

I will be switching to full-time writing soon. Heady, scary stuff. But we have lots of contracts and lots of deadlines, and it's time. I know this, but oh boy am I nervous about it.

Lucky the puppy has backslid a bit. Fence has a new problem, so we've been tying her up. This means she didn't really get enough exercise this week and came into the house destructive because of it. She's a big, energetic puppy and needs to blow off steam and not be stuck inside. I know this. But I've been sick, and tired, and the fence hasn't been truly fixed. (I thought it was, and was terribly disappointed to see her get loose again!) This Sunday I'll put up the new fence section, repair the damage she's done everywhere (screens, screen door, etc.) and we'll start again.

She isn't completely housebroken yet, either, but she is doing well. It'll help when I'm home more and available to let her in and out. The fence is critical. I just have to get the fence done first and things WILL improve. (Thinking positive!)

Gotta run. Real life calls. I have a ton of crap to get finished during my last week of work and none of it is going to do itself.

Take care of yourselves!


Saturday, March 18, 2006

Bwa ha ha ha LIFE IS SO GOOD!

THE FENCE IS FIXED!!!! And it only cost a couple of bucks! I found out that the hardware store sold replacement slats and I just bought a couple and slid them into the empty wire slots and WAHHOOOO!!!! Now on the days when I'm too tired to walk Lucky I won't have to feel so guilty because she'll have been able to run in the yard.

Lucky is fairly effectively housebroken! YIPPEEEE!!! For those of you who are more patient with messes than I am, this may not seem like a big deal. But OOOOOH BABY it matters to me!!!

We made the USA Today Bestseller's List!!!!! WHOOOO HOOOO!!! (THIS one is going to keep me smiling for months!)

Today I got up early to get some things done before Cathy and I go in to one of the bigger cities to celebrate. I thought I'd do a quick entry.

Thanks again guys for everything. Jim, I stopped by the Werewolf Cafe briefly. It's gotten so big I'm not sure even where to go! But it is so cool that you've got so many people interested in what you're doing. I'm very happy for you! Hope your Dad is doing OK and that your folks kitchen is finished and terrific.

Yo, I'm so proud of you! Keep up with the writing!

Shawn, AE, thanks so much for coming by and posting! I appreciate it!

Gotta run. Lots to do before the celebration!


Friday, March 17, 2006


We are so happy and grateful to everybody who has bought the books. Honestly, it's been an amazing, exciting time. Exhausting too -- then again, maybe that's just having to deal with the new puppy, the health stuff, etc. Tonight, whoo baby, I get to go into the back yard and fix the fence so that Lucky has somewhere to run. We've been tying her up front, but she has a bad habit of getting her chain tangled and then whining and crying -- which does no good if we're not home to untangle her. Love the dog, but she's just so much more work than the felines -- all of them combined. On the other hand, I'm losing weight fron taking her on her walks, (which more closely resemble a dead run).

ANYWAY, writing is kind of stalled for the moment. Having a hard time finding time and concentrating.

But it WILL work out. I know it. And I am truly looking forward to trying to write full-time. Wish me luck!


Thursday, March 16, 2006

WE DID IT!!!!!!


Touch of Evil made the USA Today Bestseller's List, coming in at 119. WHOOO HOOOOOOO!!!! PARTY PARTY PARTY!!!

Thank you everybody who bought the book. THANKS SO MUCH!!!!!


Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Guten Morgen

Good morning! Hope all is well with all of you. Things here are busy, exciting, interesting and so forth. The contracts for 2007 arrived. We're now doing the line-by-line checking that is part of the process when you've been a legal assistant for most of your life and don't have the ability to assume other people did it. Good that the career background isn't totally useless. LOL.

Time is flying! I'm very excited about it, and at the same time it scares me. I'm about to hit a major period of life changes. It feels somewhat like that last surge before you get to the top of the huge hill on a roller coaster where you're feeling like "Oh shit, what have I done?" At the same time it's so incredibly exciting and you wouldn't trade it for anything. One of the biggest changes is that I will be transitioning into full-time writing this year. If it doesn't work out, then I'll have to find another job, but it's time. We've got enough on our plates that I should be able to make a good living and there is certainly enough work to go around that I won't be bored. But it is scary relying on an income that comes in short, intense bursts. So folks, I say unto you -- BUY THE BOOKS -- LOTS AND LOTS AND LOTS OF COPIES.

Gotta run, the day job awaits (for a few more weeks at least).


Friday, March 10, 2006


I wish I was more self-confident. Sometimes I am. Most of the time, about things that really matter to me... not so much. The problem with self-confidence (self-esteem, and all of those other like qualities) is the SELF part. Nobody else can give it to you. You have to give it to yourself. Which is HARD.

Where is this coming from? I mean, after all, Touch of Evil is doing well. We're getting great e-mails from fans and reviews are great. Sales look good, etc. (And yes, I DID go to my favorite bookstore to look at it on the shelves. THAT bit of ego stroking I simply can't ever resist!) Well, the truth is that the edit letter is going to be coming back in a week or two from Anna (our editor at Tor) and I'm scared poopless. That was SUCH a difficult book to write because it was so intertwined with the first two in the series. The edits could be a real bear. And Cat (now Howling) was the book that originally started it all. (Even though it wasn't published first, I made up the world for Catherine and Raphael, before Cathy and I even joined forces). I also re-wrote the blasted thing so often that I was to the point where I told someone (possibly the blog) that *I* was ready to join up with Jack and kill her! Poor character -- she didn't deserve it. But I really was fed up. This, my friends, is the seamy side of writing.

So I'm scared. I want Anna to like it. I'm afraid she'll hate it. I'm afraid the edits will be huge and scary and.... Well, you get the picture. You would think that it would get better the more books we get out, and it has a little. But it's sad how little it takes to shake what confidence I have. So I keep telling myself. "It'll be fine. It'll be fine." Over and over.

Neurotic? Moi?????

Thursday, March 09, 2006

A Quickie

OK, only have a minute. Book is out. It looks great! I'm stoked. Crossing my fingers for a possible USA Today showing. People go their whole careers without it, so I won't be crushed, but DAMN it would be a fun thing to do!

The puppy has more than doubled in size. I looked up the breed she might on the internet. They generally are 23-26 inches at the whithers and 60-100 pounds. Oh MY. Repeat. OH MY. THAT, my friends, is a DOG. Apparently they are notoriously smart (no kidding, I could tell) and fiercely loyal and protective. They are considered very good watchdogs for the home. This is good. I'm just glad she gets along with the cats! She needs more running room, so I am in the process of fixing the fence in the back yard. Wish me luck.

Gotta run. Life calls. I'll pop in over the weekend with a more informative post. Hope you'll all buy the book and love it. If not, lie to me. I need the confidence. (LAUGH). NOT. Seriously, I want constructive criticism, just not "Cheerios pissers" who whine and snipe to be mean without offering legitimate suggestions. Fortunately for me, while I've seen those types elsewhere, nobody who has stopped by here has been anything other than supportive.




Friday, March 03, 2006

Good News

Hi Guys! Happy Friday!!!!

Let's see, the good news of the day is that we made the Barnes & Noble Bestseller's List and the book doesn't even get released until 3/7 (YAHOOOOOOO!!!!). We also found out that the publisher has paid for serious visibility and placement, and that there are so many huge good things going on!! HAPPY TIMES!!!

Hugely busy, but MASSIVELY HAPPY! I'll write more tomorrow!