Friday, January 23, 2009

New cover!

This is Atlantis Unmasked for July!!

New cover!!

This is the new and improved version of Justice's cover - countdown to June is on!!!

Happy almost weekend!

I'm back into Brennan's book in a big way; the curse he's under is making life very very tricky for him (and for me, not that he cares!) and for his heroine Tiernan! (You'll meet her in Justice's book.) When I was finishing up copyedits for Alexios, the absolutely perfect ending scene came to me and it was so lovely that it made me choke up a little writing it. I hope you love it, too. You'll meet Grace in Justice's book, too, by the way. OH! And for a little teaser, I put the first chapter of Brennan in the end of Alexios! Yay!

I just realized I toss those terms around and it might be helpful if I actually explained, LOL: copyedits are the stage where the manuscript comes back to me with the copyeditor's grammar and punctuation corrections - evidently I have a semicolon problem, who knew? - and continuity issues like "Hey! this character had brown hair in chapter 2, why is it purple in chapter 4?" and it's my last chance to make any substantial changes to the book.

After that, the next thing I'll see are the galleys or page proofs, where the pages are actually typeset so they look like the actual printed pages in the book will look and I'm only allowed to make very minor corrections at that stage, like fixing a typo.

Well, in other news, my darling baby is turning 9 on Sunday (how did that happen??? she was just born!!!) so I'm off to buy ingredients for her cake and maybe a gift or two.

May you all have a lovely lovely weekend.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Busy, cold cold day

It's the coldest day of the year here so just drinking hot tea and trying not to go outside for any reason. Finishing copyedits on Alexios so those can go to UPS tonight and have been writing both Brennan and the first urban fantasy simultaneously. I have never written more than one book at once, but the UF won't leave me alone, so I'm still sneaking pages in at night. We'll see how it goes! So far, I'm loving it. I have a title, but need to be sure my editor approves before I can share. Oh! And I have cover art to share. Will try to get that uploaded in the next day or two.

If you're waiting on a mailing from me, I'm sorry but my assistant has been sick so we're behind. I promise to get all those books and totebags mailed out this weekend!!

And the website - I know, it's terrible. Trust me, it's just a placeholder. I've hired a wonderful new designer, but the new site won't launch until probably late April or May 1 at the latest. I'll try to keep loading stuff to this temporary site in the meantime. I have many cool excerpts! Be patient!

Hope you're having a wonderful day and staying warm!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

random snippets

This one is from ATLANTIS UNLEASHED. If you remember from ATLANTIS AWAKENING, we left poor Justice in a very bad place:

Present day; the Void created by Anubisa, goddess of Chaos and Night

Justice floated in a dark dimension composed entirely of pain, his mind cannibalizing his memories for some sense of himself.

Viscous as a thick, murky potion conjured by a dark sorceress, the pain surrounded him, taunted him, buffeted him and cradled him until he no longer existed other than as a supplicant; a slave; an unwilling participant in a twisted and torturous game.

His consciousness had dwindled down to the barest pinprick of flickering light. He knew his name, knew he was Justice in a vastness of injustice, knew that his sacrifice had saved Others whose names had long been torn from his mind. But nobility was as nothing against the pain; the pain ate nobility, consumed strength, devoured pride. Ate the Body until what was left of the Body burned in acid rebellion against the Mind. The Mind screamed and howled, silent shrieks of protest against an unyielding evil that licked his blood, feasted on his terror and laughed a dark, breathless humor of longing.

But the memories flashed; taunting him with their evanescence. First; a glimpse of the beginning. There was the cavern, and then there was after. After had been when the pain began. Of that, at least, he was sure.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

It's an addiction

TV. Love great TV. Shows I'm having great fun with lately:

1. The Mentalist - Simon Baker. Yummy. Plus the writing is smart, funny, and with that hint of danger/madness that always intrigues me.

2. Leverage: Timothy Hutton is superb, but this really is an ensemble show. Just when I think I love Sophie best, Porter the little orphan-turned-thief will do something terrific. And the guys on the show are all funny and smart and sexy. What's not to like??

3. Of course, the old standby, the new season of American Idol. I actually like the new judge; she's a songwriter and makes actual sense when she has comments.

But I have a dirty little secret: I'm giving up most of my TV watching because I'm having so much fun with the books I'm writing that I keep ignoring the TV to write "just one more page." LOL!!

So tell me: what great shows are you watching now? What have you given up on, like I did on Heroes?
oh and P.S. if you're a teacher, I admire the HECK out of you!! Spent the day talking to three different 6th grade classes about being an author and it totally wore me out. How teachers manage to keep all those kids' attention all day long is far, far beyond me!!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

OK, if vampires ARE alive?

I'm betting they're not doing cheesy line dancing . . .

Video is work safe but definitely not good for your eardrums! Thanks (??) to my darling friend Barb and her 'net surfing addiction for the link.

Giving good things to the universe

I was speaking at my local chapter of Romance Writers of America Saturday (First Coast Romance Writers here in Jacksonville, if you'd like to join us) on a panel and one speaker, the lovely and talented Tracy Montoya, said something that really resonated with me. If someone in the group said something negative about herself, Tracy would advise "giving it back to the universe" -- in other words, don't offer such negativity; don't allow it into your life.

I love this.

So many times during my life, I've fallen in with negative thinking and negative thinkers. Woe is me, life is terrible, this job sucks, my bosses are out to get me. Unfortunately, I tend to be somewhat like a sponge for negative energy, so I soak it up and reflect it back, to the universe, if you will. And though I firmly do *NOT* believe that "bad things happen to bad people" - I worked pro bono for abused and neglected children, enough said -- I do believe that it is possible to view life's events through a prism that can be distorted.

It certainly happens to those of us who have suffered through depression; it's hard to see the light from the bottom of the black pit.

So for 2009 and beyond I'm going to try to find, if not rose-colored glasses, at least those without the shades of black and gray. I'll offer it back to the universe. I hope everybody can join me in this.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Guest blogging and more prizes!

I'm at Yankee Romance Reviewers today talking about goals, hopes, and wishes for 2009. Stop by if you have a chance!

WINNERS: My darling daughter picked random numbers, so JILL and ANONYMOUS who says her real name is Alyssa Day (hey! what fun!) are the winners. Please email me at authoralyssaday! with your mailing info for the book!

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Don't dis the YA authors

OK, I never do this. I never respond to all the critical and media disparagement of genres in which I write. Romance takes it hard - you can almost never read any article about the romance genre without the outdated and ridiculous term "bodice rippers" coming up. It's outright insult at worst and sloppy journalism at best - like putting a discussion of steam engines in an article about modern physics. But I write romance and women's fiction, and I love writing emotionally satisfying stories about love and a woman's journey and all of the terrifically exciting adventures that can go along with those things.

I've also written a couple of young adult books, just for fun, and they were very light-hearted. But I'm now working on a very intense, lovely, dark and deep love story YA novel that has (of course!) a very paranormal vibe to it. So maybe YA is on my mind, and that's why this hit me so hard. But while eating breakfast today I was glancing through this week's Entertainment Weekly and there's a piece about their predictions for the Oscar noms. Under Best Adapted Screenplay, they have a "For Your Consideration" box that says this:

Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist writer Lorene Scarfaria fashioned rounded characters from a young adult novel.

And, you know, this really ticked me off. The implication is glaringly obvious: the screenwriter MUST deserve an Oscar for MANAGING to turn characters from a YOUNG ADULT NOVEL into "rounded characters." WTF??????

Let me tell you, this EW writer hasn't read much in the way of YA novels. I have so many friends writing in the YA field right now, and their books are amazing, thought-provoking, and --surprise! -- their characters are definitely "rounded." Read Caridad Ferrer, or Niki Burnham, or Serena Robar, or Marianne Mancusi, or Simone Elkeles - and her new book, PERFECT CHEMISTRY, is out now and you MUST watch the hilarious rap video parody she did for the book - the music will stick in your mind AND make you want to buy the book AND tell you how to pronounce her last name, LOL.

So, please, media. Get over your outdated prejudices. We romance authors don't write "bodice rippers." We young adult authors DO write wonderfully rich and rounded characters who are experiencing all that life has to offer when you're on that thrilling cusp of adulthood and your future shimmers with endless possibilities.

OK, stepping off soapbox now. It's 2 days till WILD THING's release!! So in the comments tell me your favorite romance or young adult novel you've read recently and I'll randomly select two to win an autographed copy.


Saturday, January 03, 2009

Happy New Year!!

May 2009 be wonderful for us all!! I UPS'd off the copyedits for Justice (and a batch of yummy cookies) to my lovely editor today for Monday, so am feeling very pleased with myself.

I'll probably start in on revising the very end of Alexios (ATLANTIS UNMASKED) tomorrow, because I'm sick that way and can't help myself.

OH! Did I mention I got cover art for Alexios? I'll post it as soon as I can get a better .jpg file. I'm not quite sure what I think and would appreciate opinions.

Also, Brennan's book is going GREAT!! I'm almost afraid to admit it without knocking on wood - but Brennan (ATLANTIS REDEEMED)is really REALLY fun to write!! You're going to be present in the very first scene waaaay back when Poseidon first cursed Brennan - it's a crazy, wicked curse and cruelly designed to cause the most pain . . . when Brennan can feel pain again, that is!!

I'm in the process of a new website design, so please be patient, but new excerpts are FINALLY going to be posted. Also, DON'T FORGET THAT WILD THING IS OUT TUESDAY!!! Sightings of it are in bookstores already. It's the anthology with Maggie Shayne, Marjorie Liu, and Meljean Brook, and it's Bastien's story with Kat the panther shifter. I love Bastien and I hope you enjoy his book. (This is a reissue for only $7.99 of the larger, $14 version from May, 2007 so if you bought that one don't pay for it again!)

Finally, in news that I'm not crazy about yet, they picked a new Doctor Who. Not only will I miss the wonderful and amazing David Tennant, but this guy? he's sort of all hair. Weird hair. Sigh. But maybe with a haircut . . .

The kids go back to school Monday!! Boo! But Yay! More time to write! Happy New Year, everyone - 2009 is going to be WONDERFUL!!