Thursday, December 27, 2007


Cathy just received the February issue of Romantic Times and WOW, did it make us bounce around the room! The nominees for the Romantic Times Reviewers Choice Awards were listed and not only was HOWLING MOON there under Shapeshifter Romance, but TOUCH OF MADNESS also made the grade in Contemporary Paranormal Romance.

The thing that astounded me the most, though, was that we’ve been nominated for a CAREER ACHIEVEMENT AWARD in Paranormal Romance! Woo!

Holy CRAP!!!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas/Happy Yule/Joyous Hannakkuh(sp?)/Happy Quanza sp?)

Or as my son sometimes puts is -- Happy International Gift Giving Holiday.

I am a Catholic Christian and thus, I went to Midnight Mass. I also have my own personal tradition of singing out "Happy Birthday to You" with Jesus as the birthday boy. Weird, I know, but it works for me.

This afternoon I have been invited to friends houses. Other friends have called, and family, many of them worried that I would be depressed and lonely today. I appreciate their concern, but Christmas isn't really one of my big holidays. I'm more into Thanksgiving and Halloween, even the 4th of July. Which is why I went to visit my son on the Thanksgiving weekend instead of now --- that and hoping that I might be able to get to Illinois to visit my parents, for whom Christmas is a big deal. But that didn't happen. Probably going to have to be a spring visit.

Mostly I've been curled up with the furbearers (4 cats and 1 large dog) for a four day holiday that has let me rest and try to recover. For those of you who haven't been here, my health has been doing it's bad thing again, and I'm working to head off some trouble at the pass. Chronic stuff that is bothersome, but not life threatening.

Oddly, (or not) my animals all know when the health is iffy. They train assistance animals to do that, but mine have always just known instinctively. And when I need rest, they make darned sure I get it---even going so far as pinning me down to the bed and hooking their claws in the mattress so I can't move when they want me to rest. Pushy, but effective. And since they seem to know it a little before I do, I've started paying a little more attention, so that I stop BEFORE I keel over.

As I've said before, I'm in the middle of my midlife crisis. It has hit, predictably enough, at 48. I'm trying not to let it rule me, but I have to admit, I want things to change. I feel like the old Queen song -- "I want it all. I want it all. I want it all, and I want it NOW!"

I do believe I can make the changes I need to, once I decide what they are and what I DO want. (Right now I'm mired down in what I DON'T want). But it will take time, will, and work. It always does.

On a completely other note (C# perhaps), I have been thinking about regrets.

Regrets are poisonous. First. You can't go back in time, you can't change what has happened. Second, what you did, and the consequences of it, have changed who you are and who everyone it affected is in unpredictable ways. If, indeed, you are even remotely happy with who you have become, it is in part because of what you did. In fact, I believe it is our mistakes and our regrets that teach us the harshest and most indelible lessons. The "I'm SOOOOO not going back there" kind of lessons that we need to progress as decent human beings. But dwelling on it, and regretting, can keep you from learning the lesson and moving on, and leave you mired down in a morass of stinking, smelling excrement that only makes you feel progressively worse about yourself.

Does that mean I am not sorry about anything I've done? Hell no! I've screwed up more than my share and hurt people badly in the process. There are times when I want to scream because I'm STILL and will always hurt over things I did to myself and others.

For example, without getting too specific. If I could I'd make a broadcast announcement something along the lines of: "Deno Russo, I realize it's been almost three decades, but I'm still REALLY, REALLY sorry, I was nineteen, drank too much, and was generally an idiot. I hope you forgive me and that you've had a wonderful life since then. You deserve it. Oh, and happy birthday." In the hopes that the said Mr. Russo would, in fact, forgive me. If he even remembers me, which is problemmatic since it has, after all, been almost three decades and I probably didn't mean nearly as much to him as he did to me. (Cruel truth, but truth nonetheless.) For all I know, he's happily married to a Playboy Bunny and living the high life. Or, more likely, just living a regular, ordinary life. Which is no bad thing.

And there are other things too. Most of them I've apologized to the people who got hurt for. Many of those people have actually forgiven me. But if I think about them too much I realize it's easier to forgive others than to forgive yourself.

Still, I kind of go along with the famous person (who I can't remember the name of, so can't accurately quote) who said they'd rather regret what they did than what they haven't done.

There are things I haven't done (yet) that I want to. But I've achieved a remarkable amount of what I've wanted in life. Oh, I haven't travelled to the exotic places I thought would be cool. But as I get older I realize I LIKE being home with my animals. A lot. I do better with trips of 4 days to a week. Longer than that just wears me out and I miss the critters and the comforts of home.

I look at the wall where I've posted the covers of the novels we've written and I just blink sometimes. It's real. It's really, truly, REAL. There are people out there who actually care about my imaginary friends, who honestly want to know what's going on and going to happen next. That is so flipping COOL I can't even tell you. I mean, things and realities that were only swirling around in the recesses of my brain are actually achieving their own reality in other people's (is that the correct plural possessive? I don't know. A copyeditor I'm not.) minds.

So I sit here writing this before I get ready to go have dinner and shoot pool and am thinking (1) should I even post this? (2) Will anyone even read it? It's rambling pretty long, and to anyone but me is probably wretchedly boring (except maybe Deno, but the odds of that are so long I'd be better off buying a powerball ticket.)

Anyway, tomorrow I go back to work. I like my day job. The people are cool. The work is doable. Yeah, I'd like to be independently wealthy, but I'm not. So if I've got to work, it's a good place to do it. But I wish I had more time and energy to write. And I wish I were living in the city again.

There are people who love the rural/farm/ranch life.
There are people who love small towns.
There are people who love urban areas.

They are not the same people. And that is okay. It takes all kinds to make a world. I am still, despite everything, and urban kind of gal. That I am living in a small town is a problem for me. Yes, there are wonderful advantages. Ask any of the people who love small town living and they will expound on it for hours. They will also tell of the horrors of urban life.

I, alas, do not agree. Living in a small town is. . . okay. It has served its purpose in my life. I suspect I will be here a while longer. But there are a lot of things that are crazy-making for me about small town life; and things I can indulge in my personality in the city which are just too too TOO "weird" for a very-conservative small town.

I miss my eccentricities. A lot. I miss it being completely unremarkable for people to have multiple piercings or wear goth or vintage clothing, hair color not found in nature and tattoos. I miss there being LOTS of men with long hair and/or facial hair, and people not being weirded by my wearing a leather biker jacket even though I'm a middle-aged woman. I miss shooting pool and eating at Chipotle's. I don't want to have to iron my jeans to have a crease or risk being thought slovenly. I'd probably still be very conservative at work. I work in law. It's a conservative business. But I miss the sheer, rowdy LIFE of the city. If I wake up at 2:00 in the morning I'd like there to be something for me to DO besides go to the convenience store and buy gas.

And I can't say most of the above out loud in public right now because it would honestly insult the hell out of the people here. They would read it as an indictment of the lifestyle they hold dear. These are good, kind, people who honestly care about me and worry about not only my life but my immortal soul. (They take that last particularly seriously, I may add). I don't want to hurt them. I would (see previous paragraphs) REGRET it. But there are times when I just want to stand in the middle of the courthouse square and SCREAM my frustration out because there's a good 3/4 of my personality that I'm stuffing down just to get by. And I honestly don't know how much longer I can do that. Which means that things could get very . . . interesting.

Stay tuned.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Holly Happydays

Hi Guys!

Holly happydays! I am officially off work at the day job for the next four days! WOOT!!

Don't get me wrong, I like the day job, but I am SOOOOOO pooped. And I've been having symptoms, AND I need to write, AND I need to get the website redone and up, AND the house is a pit. But mostly, I need to rest and hope to get my health back on track.

Also, I'm in the throes of my midlife crisis. So I need to figure out what the @#*$( I want to do with myself.

I'll let you know how it all works out. Right now I just know that I'm wanting to liven things up in my life. Enjoy a little more, be a little funky and creative with regard to my personal life and not just the writing. The problem is, this is a VERY conservative small town. Funky is not looked upon highly for middle-aged women. At ALL. But I want it. So, we'll see what I do, where and how far I go.

Wish me luck.

And hopefully I'll make real progress on the writing.


Sunday, December 09, 2007



It's the holidays. How did that happen?


Okay. Let's see. Book is progressing. Right now I'm working with Cathy on the standalone. It's been a little tricky, but I think we've got it now. The one I was working on is still chomping at the bit, so I hope to get back to it soon.

Had a great visit with my son. It was good to see him. Don't know what I'm going to do for Christmas. Maybe just stay home with the animals. I um, kinda, um, well OVERSPENT. OOPS.

(Not like anyone else does that at this time of year or anything. LOL.)

Got the cover for Touch of Darkness. IT SOOOOOOOOOO Rocks. As soon as I remember how to post it I will.

I'm sorry that I haven't gotten the website updated yet, but I HAVE gotten the photo and it is in process. It's just that real life keeps intervening. My employer actually thinks I should WORK for a living. Who knew? (Apparently my creditors, but let's not go there, hmnn?)

I'm in the throes of my midlife crisis. I don't know what I'm going to do about it, but I am DEFINITELY in the throes.

WELL, I'd love to go on (and on), but I wanna get going. So, LATER.