Tuesday, February 26, 2008

GREAT resource on book releases!

Just found this... ROMANCE NOVEL TV has a forum devoted to all the releases by month and lists all the covers so you can see what's out. The romances are divided into the various genres. It's fun seeing all the covers at once.

And I love that historical booty cover, too!

Click here to access the forum.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Distracting the Duchess

Fellow Leisure author Colleen Thompson has a great guest blog interview today with Leisure author Emily Bryan/Diana Groe on how Diana remade her career. Check it out here.

Emily's new historical, DISTRACTING THE DUCHESS, is out this week. Looks like it's very sexy and a lot of fun!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Attn: all sadists

Why bother with whips, canes and other instruments of inflicting pain? Just go to the doctor and ask for a coritsone shot.

I was in the podiatrist's office this a.m. finally checking out my foot pain I've had for 8 months, since I don't have to travel for work for another month. While waiting for the X-rays to develop, I picked up an Esquire magazine and started reading an article for men about sadism.


The "Master" was talking about using a cane, a flogger to inflict pain and get the "slave" to the point of pain where the endorphins kick in. He said it gives him a rush. Okay.

It was very odd reading about this while sitting in a doctor's office. The doctor pressed the heel of my foot. "Does this hurt?"


After I climbed off the ceiling, he did the Xray and informed me I have a bone spur and arthritis in my foot. Then he gave me a cortisone shot that's supposed to make the pain go away for a couple of weeks.

YEOW!!!!!!!!!! If you've ever had one, and I had one years ago when I ripped a muscle in my back, it feels like someone shoving a railroad spike filled with acid into your muscles.

As I limped out of the office, I kept thinking about that article on sadism. I wonder if someone injected the "Master" with a coritsone shot into his gonads, if he'd been jelling, feeling the rush, waiting for those endorphins to kick in...

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Hump Day Hunk

Love a man in uniform. This is Ben Barnes, who plays Prince Caspian in the upcoming CHRONICLES OF NARNIA this May. Can't wait for that movie.
Speaking of knights in heavy amour, er, armor, DH and I went to the Renaissance Festival. We actually went out and took time to enjoy ourselves. As I'm looking over the map, this guy on stilts bends over and asks, "May I help you, my lady? Are you looking for something?"
I glance up and say, "Yeah. My virginity. I lost it a long time ago and can't find it. Any ideas?"
He stares, grins and laughs. DH shakes his head. He is used to me, after all, after 12 years of marriage and me blurting out things like that to complete strangers in public places. I love that man. Happy VD day tomorrow, honey.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Herding rats

I just found out Dorchester contracted to have The Cobra & the Concubine printed in Italian. Yay! That means my books have been translated now into 6 languages, including English, Spanish, Italian, German, Russian and Japanese.

Posted an excerpt to The Scorpion and the Seducer on my website. Click here to read.

And speaking of excerpts, a topic that dovetails into web excerpts... I got an RWA alert about piracy sites. There's been talk on message boards and in RWA chapters about this.

It stinks. I have a book on at least two sites I know of. The publisher's legal department is looking into this, obviously not just for me, but the hundreds more, and well known authors, who are also being pirated.

Just to state a fact: If you download any of my books for free, you are doing so from a pirated site. Please. Don't. I doubt most readers are doing it gleefully rubbing their hands. Some probably just want to "test the waters" and see if they like my writing. If that's the case, I post generous excerpts on my website for all my books.

Please, don't download my books off the internet from a piracy site.

It's stealing, plain and simple. It doesn't benefit me, the publisher, or you as the reader. It perpetuates a cycle of negative backlash in this industry for me, other authors and publishers.

At the same time, trying to track down these piracy sites is the equivalent of herding rats. Not cats. Rats always come back. They breed faster.

When I first found my book on a piracy site, I was upset. But when I found a SPANISH copy of my second Egyptian historical on another piracy site, I just started to laugh. Hey, I'm being pirated in TWO languages now!

I laugh not because this isn't a serious issue to me. It is. But I realized then the futility of it all. I had this mental image of me chasing down these ratonas running through the internet in digital form with copies of El Tigre y la Tumba, which isn't even an ebook, so someone scanned it. The whole book. So I'm letting the publishers handle it and going back to what I can control through the many frustrations of this publishing business: the writing.

I'm a writer. I'm going to sit my pirated butt in the chair and get to work on the next project due.

And hopefully I'll be writing about werewolves, and not thinking about those ratonas running amok with copies of my book in Spanish.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Monday, February 04, 2008

That four letter word

Yesterday I really wanted to go to the Everglades with Dh, just tool around, bird watch, alligator watch and relax, but I worked instead. Work, that four letter word.

I worked on page proofs for The Scorpion and the Seducer. Have to send them back today to make deadline. As I worked, I thought I really liked the book, loved it, it's great. By the time I finished, the doubts rolled in and I thought no one will give a rat's behind about the book. It's me.

Fact is, I'm just zonked. The travel does it. I go on a trip and the blood starts humming, the energy is pumped up, and I'm geared up like an explorer ready to ascend a mountain. When the trip is over, I crash. Usually I crash over the weekend and that helps, but I went from traveling around Nicaragua and visiting poor people and starving kids to the romance writing. The page proofs, revising and editing and revising a book I have to mail out next week. Dorchester wanted a new author bio asap as they're DEFINITELY printing The Falcon and the Dove this month (YAY!) and I had some other author stuff requiring my attention.

Superbowl? What's that?

No time to crash. I have deadlines. At the day job, they want someone to go to Haiti, again. People are dropping dead in northern Haiti from starvation. It's bad. But I refused. There's nothing left inside me right now. Two trips, to Haiti and last week to Nicaragua, and I have nothing more left inside me.

The schedule last week wasn't that bad. Most days we hit the road about 7 a.m. and get back to the hotel around 7. Only 12 hour days. I've had 18 hour days in the field. There was some walking, up hills, not much. Lots of driving.

Right now I have to get ready to go to work, the other work, the day job that's my bread and butter. The dog is sleeping under the bed right now. Man, I envy him. I'd love to be sleeping under the bed right now, no pressure, no responsiblities, no schedule, the most pressing thing on the agenda going outside to water the grass.

It's a dog's life. On a Monday, anyway. I'm just trying to be positive and focus on the fact Dorchester is going back to press on The Falcon and the Dove. For four years, I've been asking them to reprint this book. When it's availabe, my whole Khamsin warriors of the wind series will be in print. Yay! I need to celebrate when it's available. Maybe I'll even do something really outrageous and different.

Like sleep, for a change.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

I don't want a man.

This is Clara from Nicaragua, the woman pictured on the left holding the baby. She's 33 and lives in this adobe shack. It's handmade adobe from mud, straw, rocks, and it crumbles when it rains.

Clara is very poor. She makes about $100 a year from picking coffee. She brought her extended family, her mom, daughters and their husbands, niece, to live with her because they were all homeless. The house has huge brown spiders (I saw one, yuck) living in the cracks and scorpions.

Clara and her family often go without food, sometimes up to three days. Clara told me that it is hard raising a family (her youngest is three) on her own, especially when the kids are hungry, but she "doesn't want a man." She said she'd rather go it alone because she had a man in her life and he drank and made things worse. Meaning, he used all the money they earned from picking coffee for liquor instead of the food they need.

To hear this in a very male-dominated culture, where many poor woman wouldn't dream of NOT having a man around the house, was very refreshing. I actually raised my fist in the air and said, "YES!"

I told our translator to say this to Clara: "You go girlfriend. You rock. You are right. You don't need a man. I have faith in you that you can do it and your life will improve. You are a very strong woman. Good for you!"

She smiled at me.