This blog is for those 18 and older.

Monday, May 24, 2010

The Change to Writing Fulltime – Part I

I thought I’d share a few thoughts on a recent transition in my life; basically, I’ve gone from writing part-time to writing full time. Writing romance is my passion and I now have the ability to pursue it fully. I’m so excited! Many multi-published authors write full time, but not many of us who are yet to be published have the opportunity to do so. On the surface, it seems like a dream come true, and it is, but I’ve found that there are pitfalls just waiting to trip me up.

For example, it is easy, when I have all day, to put off doing the final edits on a manuscript until later. Before I know it, later is 10:17pm at night and I haven’t started them. The more time I have, the less I seem to accomplish and vice versa. Have you ever heard the old saying, “If you need something done, give it to a busy person?” It’s true. This means that somehow I have to create pressure for myself. This can get a little tricky.

Deadlines: As an unpublished writer, I have no editor expecting revisions by a certain date or an agent calling to see how far along I am on my current work in progress (WIP). So I have to create my own pressure, my own stress. Luckily, I’ve had a number of requests lately so my deadlines, while they are arbitrary, are at least actual projects that need to be sent out. Otherwise, it’s easy to research, or read, or promote for hours and not get the writing or revising done that I know needs to happen.

Other great deadline makers are contests, calls for conference workshop proposals, and critique partners. Thanks to these, this month I’ve sent out two contest entries, one workshop proposal, and multiple chapters to various critique partners in addition to my submissions. I have succeeded in “creating pressure” at least for this month :-)

Structure: Here is an area that I’m still exploring. When I worked outside the house, the structure was determined for me. I had to be at work by a certain time, had to check email, make calls, and attend meetings. Then I was able to come home and have dinner. My writing came before or after the work day.

Now the writing is the work day and adjusting to the new schedule is not easy. I still find myself writing a lot at night as if the darkness triggers the habit. In the morning, it is easier to answer emails and do research on the web or update my website. But I’ve heard it’s best to write just before going to sleep and as soon as you wake up. I’d like my schedule to change, but haven’t quite figured it all out yet. So, if anyone has any ideas, I could certainly use them. If you have any tricks of the trade, I'd love to read them. Please, comment to share :-)


P.S. Everyone who comments on my blog or contacts me through my website in the month of May is being entered into a drawing for a $10 Barnes & Noble card.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Taking on Twins by Cathy McDavid

What happens when a former military woman meets a laid back professional fisherman? Let’s just say it gets interesting as is proven in Cathy McDavid’s recent novel TAKING ON TWINS. This Harlequin American Romance is, by definition, pure summer fun.

Corinne Sweetwater, one of the Tucker family who owns the Bear Creek Ranch, has just come home from the military and is having a rough time adjusting to civilian life. She quickly discovers that running the Bear Creek kitchen like a platoon doesn’t work.

To make matters worse, Greg Pfitser, a professional fisherman and television star is hosting a large fishing tournament at the ranch. This is great for the Tucker family, but tough on Corrine who can’t seem to keep her employees on track. When a mangy dog and two five year-olds invade her kitchen, followed by their breathtakingly handsome father, she is not happy.

But Greg has his own problems, like the fact that he just discovered he’s the father of twin five-year-olds less than three months earlier. As he works on developing a relationship with his children, he must come to terms with his own childhood and plan a major tournament that is critical to the Ranch.

As Corrine and Greg develop feelings for each other, the twins get into mischief, and the dog doesn’t help. Add to that the pressures of two strenuous jobs and the twins’ Mom visiting, and this book delivers a great roller coaster ride that has you rooting for everyone.

With great characters anyone can relate to, it takes the reader on a journey over the emotional gambit that includes everything from irritation to embarrassment to pure joy. A great summer read about a fun summer getaway with a happy summer love story. What more can a reader ask for?

For more about Cathy McDavid and her American romances go to


Monday, May 10, 2010

How do you buy your books?

I was thinking about this question the other day when there was a delay on Amazon in getting the latest release of a book that a friend of mine wrote. I, however, went directly to a Barnes & Noble (I love Christmas gift cards) and bought the book immediately. This started me thinking, and I decided to take an inventory of how I buy my books. Here’s what I discovered.

Over 67% of the books I bought last year came directly from the authors at signings. Yikes! I guess I got out a lot last year :-) I bought 23% of my books from a bookstore. Another 3% were bought from epublishers (I’m very new to this), and 7% were ordered online. This includes every book I bought for myself, not as gifts. The books generally fell into two categories, romances and writing books.

Somehow, I don’t think this is the norm. But I am curious and was hoping to get a feel from other romance readers on how they buy their books. How do you buy your books? Do you buy your romances differently than you buy your other books? Please, do tell.


P.S. Not all percentages are exact as my math grades in school were never as good as my English grades :-)

Sunday, May 2, 2010

STORMWALKER by Allyson James

Allyson James delivers again with a suspenseful, breathtaking, romantic ride in her new release, STORMWALKER, on bookshelves now. A fascinating combination of paranormal urban fantasy and romance, this story will have your heart from page one.

Janet Begay is a young, Harley riding, Native American with the ability to harness the power of storms, but the consequences for doing so are harsh unless she can release her magic into another magical being. Janet is in Magellan, Arizona to find a missing woman and to confront her goddess mother from the Beneath. Not an easy task. It’s a good thing she’s got help.

Her ex-boyfriend Mick shows up after five years and takes her out of the police station where she’s being questioned about an accident. Though Mick is shot, he quickly heals and takes the magic Janet must release, reveling in it. Mick has never told Janet what he is, but she assumes he’s some kind of Firewalker since he controls fire. She isn’t even close.

The cast of characters is fascinating, from Coyote, a trickster god, to Jamison the changer, (both were introduced in the novella “A Little Night Magic”), to a talking bi-sexual magic mirror. Also included are Sherriff Nash Jones who is an Unbeliever, but appears to be exceedingly powerful without even knowing it plus there's a cast of powerless humans. You never know who will show up next but will be anxiously awaiting them. Trust me, you won’t be disappointed.

Trouble follows Janet wherever she goes, but then again, so do her companions . . . eventually. Mick is hotter than hot, while Nash seems to find a way to blame Janet for everything. Coyote is his usual undependable, cryptic self. Between Nightwalkers, Skinwalkers, and motorcycle druggies, Janet has her hands full, but when she recognizes another power within herself, separate from her storm abilities, she realizes how dangerous she can be to those she cares about. In the end, she must make a choice between complex opposites.

In STORMWALKER, Allyson James has built an earthly world with wonderful characters that is easy to follow. Each character is unique and interesting, and as a reader, you can’t help pulling for the “good guys,” once you figure out who they are. I’m thrilled to know that this story will be followed by another entitled FIREWALKER. If you like a conflicted, but strong heroine with a hunky hot protector, and lots of special powers, you’re going to love this series!

STORMWALKER has just been released and I highly recommend getting this one immediately! Check-out the series at: