Wednesday, September 26, 2007

So funny...

...and not just because it's 1:11 a.m. and I've been writing for five hours.

Get over here right now and watch Meljean Brook’s Five Easy Steps To Writing a Romance Novel video.

You will laugh, you will snort milk through your nose (unless you happen to be drinking sauvignon blanc, and then you will snort that through your nose), you will thank god for YouTube. Yeah, it's that funny.

Monday, September 24, 2007


Until yesterday I was in denial about how much writing I lost when my one-year-old macbook's hard drive crashed. I'd been taking a lot of notes by hand and I thought they would be sufficient to recreate what I had finished. Yesterday I put my mending elbow to the test and typed for an hour. Then it hit me. I lost fifty pages of my WIP as well as all the research I had carefully bookmarked and excerpted. And some of the scenes I wrote were not in my notebook at all. So now I'm back to square one. I'm trying to get the first 35 pages back in shape to enter the Emily contest. We all have setbacks. I'm trying not to let the extreme irony of this one get me down. Bike crash and hard drive crash in the space of two days. My muse is testing me. The exasperating hussy.

Lessons learned:

Back up! Lapse not into complacency, lest ye lose everything.

Accept not that third glass of wine from the cute tattooed bartender before singing more Liza Minnelli, lest ye be unfit to ride home.

Are you entering the Emily? Are you signing up for the Golden Heart? Are you asking yourself whether you can possibly finish your WIP by December 3rd? I know I am.

Monday, September 10, 2007


On Thursday night I flew off my bicycle and fractured my left elbow (I'm typing with my right hand only--fun).

On Friday my laptop completely died.

Sometimes you have to laugh, or else you're going to cry. I thought about posting lurid closeups of my battered knees, but I didn't want to make you sick.

The writing continues by hand. Maybe this is actually a good thing. My thoughts flow well on to paper. I hope I didn't lose my hard drive, though, because I hadn't backed up since I finished chapter one.

Ever broken a bone at an inopportune time?

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

September Challenge--Day Five

This is going to sound like an excuse, dear blog, but it's true. I'm working ten-hour days until Friday, when I am supposed to send the 100-page Bulletin I'm editing to the printer. But that means I can take time off the following week. So no romance goals for the next few days, and then I'll write like mad to catch up.

Monday, September 03, 2007

September Challenge--Day Three

Wow, I have never posted on this blog three days in a row. It's kind of fun. No pressure to be meaningful, pithy or hilarious. Just me telling the computer what I did today. Unfortunately, Day Three was not pretty. I had way too much fun at a friend's birthday party last night, and I wasn't in writing shape. I only have three pages of Chapter Two finished.

I did find out what ham meant, though, and Shelli and Huar were both right. Unabridged (v 1.1) - Cite This Source ham1 [ham] Pronunciation Key - Show IPA Pronunciation –noun
1.a cut of meat from the heavy-muscled part of a hog's rear quarter, between hip and hock, usually cured.
2.that part of a hog's hind leg.
3.the part of the leg back of the knee.
4.Often, hams. the back of the thigh, or the thigh and the buttock together.

Time to stop blogging and start writing. There are still a few good hours left in the day.


Finish Chapter Two

Sunday, September 02, 2007

September Challenge--Day Two

I wrote a prologue and first chapter yesterday. They included murder, illegal boxing, and a seance. I wanted to start with a bang.

Historical Tidbit:

In the illegal boxing matches held in gambling dens in mid-Victorian England, the Prize Ring Rules stated:

That no person is to hit his Adversary when he is down, or seize him by the ham, the breeches, or any part below the waist. A man on his knees is to be reckoned down.

So that raises the question, what exactly is "the ham"?

Maybe tomorrow I'll post an excerpt. I'm hoping that public exposure will keep me honest.

Meljean Brook, author of dark and brilliant paranormals for Berkley, suggested I give myself a reward to look forward to. I've got that covered. My birthday is in the end of September, and the BF promised to take me away for a weekend on the Oregon coast. Writer Lynda Rucker has been extolling the virtues of the Sylvia Beach Hotel to me for years. Known as the definitive "hotel for book lovers," it has literary-themed rooms that range from the Colette to the Alice Walker. We'll be staying in the Edgar Allan Poe room, of course.

In other news, my friend and CP, Kerry Blaisdell, took first AND third in the inaugural Golden Claddagh contest. She also finaled in the Golden Gateway contest (along with Tessa, Courtney Milan, and India Carolina). Congratulations!!


Fill in the missing historical details in Chapter One. Start Chapter Two.

What are your goals for September?

Saturday, September 01, 2007

September Challenge

It was exactly two years ago today that I started writing romance after reading an article about Eloisa James. The same afternoon, I went to the library and checked out Potent Pleasures, and I was hooked. Two years later, I'm writing Victorian noir smut, not frothy Regency, but my passion for reading and creating smart romance continues unabated.

I shudder to think of my first attempts, and my blithe "this will be easy" attitude. It's not easy for me. But the pain is worth it. I've seen my writing progress and become more saleable. But my biggest problem is establishing a consistent writing schedule. For now I've settled into a routine that seems to be working. I start around ten o'clock at night and write until the computer screen is just a blur. Then I get up late, do my yoga, and go to my graduate assistantship in the afternoon. But graduate classes start in a month, and then I'll be writing papers, instead of romance. So I want to make September as productive as possible. And I need some kind of accountability. Therefore, I'm pledging to update this blog almost every day for the next month in a desperate attempt to force myself to be productive. I hope it works!

In other news, I'm so thrilled for all my online writing friends who are achieving their dreams. The new releases, contest finals, and agent signings are too numerous to list (and I promise to do a better job of giving shout-outs as they happen), but they have shown me the tangible benefits of believing in yourself enough to send your work out into the world. Thanks for inspiring me, ladies.


Finish Chapter One of The Night Side.