Archive for May, 2008

Tuesday, May 20th, 2008
Did An Interchangeable Label Kill The Erotic Romance Genre?

A friend of mine and I were talking the other day about the slow demise of erotic romance. (Yes, it’s the same friend.) She theorized that one of the reasons that erotic romance took a nosedive was because of the interchangeable labels (ie erotica/erotic romance). I hadn’t thought about it in that way, but it does make a lot of sense. I’m a firm believer that you should never confuse the reader or mislead them. Every publisher has their own unique definition of what an erotic romance is–same goes for erotica. Some publishers found the terms interchangeable, while others created a clear divide. The problem is that it was never made clear to readers. Sometimes they picked up a book that was labeled erotic romance and got an erotica novel instead. The opposite happened, too. After a while, readers got tired of guessing which book was which and sales gradually tapered off. I should state for the record that I do believe that there will continue to be spicy romances in one form or another from here on out. The door has been kicked down, so there’s no closing it now. I doubt they’ll be labeled as erotic romance/erotica in the very near future.

Could part of this be the over-saturation that ends a publishing trend? Absolutely. But I do believe it was helped along by mislabeling. I know that as a reader I like to know what kind of book I’m picking up. I don’t like surprises. Period. If I reach for an erotic romance, I expect to get an erotic romance. Not erotica dressed up in nice knickers. Same goes if I pick up an urban fantasy. I have very specific expectations for those types of books. I don’t think I’m alone. The problem occurs when those expectations are not met. Hence the danger of interchangeable labels.

What do you all think? Are we completely off base? Or do you see a different reason for the demise that hasn’t been mentioned here?

Monday, May 19th, 2008
Makes You Wonder

A friend and I were talking about blogs the other day. (She knows who she is.*g*) One of my favorite blogs to visit is John Scalzi’s blog because he covers a variety of topics and doesn’t let much get to him when it comes to comments. I realized that there are only a few ‘romance’ blogs that attempt that and even they don’t cover topics like Scalzi. It dawned on me that there were a couple of reasons for this, which is what prompted the conversation with my friend. One, is that most (but not all) romance blogs are operated by women and two, seems to come from the fact that they’re tied to romance.

It seems extremely easy to set off a firestorm on romance blogs. Anything with the slightest bit of controversy (ie politics, religion, books, authors, reviewers, movies, etc.) gets ripped apart. It kind of makes me sad because I wish that I could operate a blog like Scalzi’s, but I know it would amount to career suicide. It’s too easy to offend people without trying, and once you do, word spreads. Now I don’t know if sales are effected, but in these economic waters can anyone (especially an unestablished writer) really take a chance? 🙁

Thursday, May 15th, 2008
Mood–Tiny Bit Better

My mood is a little bit better today. No, I’m still not over Moonlight’s cancellation, but I’ve resolved to simply ‘dislike’ the powers that be. It works for me. 👿

I had to work on a partial yesterday, so I didn’t manage to start my third book. I did get the partial in and it’s being sent out with my other partial, so I now have a few things circulating. Yay! I have finally received the movies I wanted. I find it helps sometimes to get ‘in the mood’ for a book, if you watch films that are similar in setting. (Note: I didn’t say story.) I have friends that watch historical documentaries and dramas before they start their books. It puts them in the right mindset. Other authors put together playlists for their books. I haven’t done that because I find lyrics distracting. In another life, I used to write songs, so it’s easy for me to go off on tangents. I can listen to music beforehand or if there are no lyrics involved (ie soundtracks, classical, etc.), but movies work best for me since they help with visualization. Anyway, those are my plans for today. (ie watch movies and write) 🙂

I do need your help. This plea goes out to readers and writers. I am going to try to put together homemade bookplates hopefully without them looking homemade. What I’d like to know is if you’ve seen any bookplates that you’ve liked? If so, why did you like them? What information do you expect to find on a bookplate other than an autograph? Thanks ahead of time for all your help. 🙂

Wednesday, May 14th, 2008
RIP Moonlight

I can’t tell you how bummed out I am. I just found out that Moonlight has been cancelled. I’m sure CBS is going to replace it with one of those reality shows or lame sitcom because there aren’t quite enough of those on TV. Soon I’m going to be down to watching nothing but DVD’s. Sigh. I’m going to REALLY miss this show.

Tuesday, May 13th, 2008
Working Away

The weekend went well. Our friends got married. It was a great day. The weather was fab. Lots of sun and good food. On Sunday we finally made it to Iron Man. It was everything we heard and more. Robert Downey Jr. definitely made the movie. I did think he and Gwen had great chemistry. Would definitely recommend it, if you haven’t seen the flick yet. Next up Indiana Jones. And no, I don’t care what kind of reviews it’s getting. I’m going. 🙂

I did receive a pleasant surprise yesterday when the doorbell rang. I opened the door to find two boxes of RED arcs waiting for me. YAY! I’m not sure if I’ll have extras to giveaway yet. I have to see how many I need for bookseller promo first. There are two exceptions–Shiloh (now you can stop yelling at me *g* ) and the Brenda Novak auction. If you can’t bid on the ARC, you can always try to win THIS. Yes, this is a shameless plug. 🙂

Along with the ARC surprise, I did manage to get a few things hammered out on a couple of ideas I’m working on. Yes, these will hopefully be future books. I just have to get a few more gaps filled before I can put them together and send them off to my agent.

Other than that, I’m working today. It’s exciting I know. *g* What is everyone else up to? Any news? Great books read? Sales made? Now is the time to share. 😀

Monday, May 12th, 2008
I Get By With A Little Help From My Friends

This message comes via Shiloh Walker.

I’ve got an auction up on ebay to help raise money for the cyclone victims and I’m trying to get the word out.

Right now, it involves a couple of ARCs, several books, but more have added, and a GC to Barnes and Noble.

It’s up on ebay thru missionfish-the charity I chose was SAVE THE CHILDREN since they already have people in the country and have had some success getting much needed supplies. And they have an excellent rep for putting their money where their mouth is- 90% of all monies received go to their programs, which is beyond excellent for a charity.

I know some people feel not doing anything might be best considering the actions of the junta and hold off waiting until that situation changes, but I don’t think letting people suffer is a viable option either if there are ways of getting help in.

From Save the Children’s 5/9 update-
Westport, Conn. (May 9, 2008) — The death toll in Myanmar continues to rise as a result of Cyclone Nargis and hardships for hundreds of thousands of survivors left in its wake are increasing. With 500 staff on the ground, Save the Children has reached 72,000 people, 24,000 of whom are estimated to be children, through the distribution of food, water purification tablets, plastic sheeting for shelter and other needed supplies

And this is part of the reason why I chose them-they already have people inside the country and they seem to be a trusted by those within the country, making it easier to get help in.

So far, the auction includes
Signed copy of Private Places, historical romance anthology, not due out until 8/08 with stories by Robin Schone, Allyson James, Claudia Dain & Shiloh Walker
-The Perfect Ten, signed, donated by Janice Maynard
-The Legacy & bookmarks, signed, donated by Beth Williamson
-Hard as Nails, signed, *7/08 release* ARC donated by HelenKay Dimon
-Signed books donated by Rosemary Laurey-titles to be listed at a later date-
-Hunters: Heart and Soul, signed, by Shiloh Walker
-Hunting the Hunter, signed, by Shiloh Walker
-Hunter’s Salvation, signed, by Shiloh Walker

Recently donated but not yet listed items include books from Patrica Sargeant, Ann Jacobs, Charlene Teglia, Kate Angell & a gift card from the Brown Literary Agency for Barnes & Noble.

Anybody interested in bidding on the auction, it can be found here.

Friday, May 9th, 2008
I Got Nothing

It’s been a busy week. Busier than what I anticipated. The door took longer than expected. I had appointments on the days the workers weren’t here–except today. Tomorrow our friends are getting married an hour outside of town, so we’ll be up bright and early tomorrow to make the drive. Did I mention we’re picking up the groom? 😉 So today I’m going to try to get something (anything) done on the book. I’d hoped to be ready to go on the writing front by now, but it hasn’t happened. I’m still going to start Crimson on Monday. Can’t delay any longer.

I am hoping to catch Iron Man. It’ll have to be on Sunday, which means it’ll be slammed because of Mother’s Day. Yep, that’s right. It’s Mother’s Day on Sunday. I’ve mailed out my cards, but I haven’t managed the gifts yet. 🙄 Have I mentioned that it’s been a BUSY week? Sigh. Hopefully you all are more on top of it.

Have a great weekend. Oh, and do not forget to watch MOONLIGHT tonight. It only has two more weeks to go! I really want them to renew that show. Please help me out. 😉