Archive for July, 2010

Tuesday, July 27th, 2010
Can I Panic Now?

I don’t know why, but I’m beginning to feel panic set in. I keep forgetting that I’ve already packed my suitcase and sent it ahead, so every hour or so, I sit up and think OMG I have to pack. It’s not a pleasant feeling. When I’m stressed I tend to impulse buy. I now I have five more ebooks than I originally planned to purchase. Blush. Pretty soon my dh is going to ban me from his Kindle account. 🙁

The weirdest thing is I haven’t really thought about RWA this year. Normally I’m either getting ready to go or bummed that I can’t. This year I’m feeling indifferent. Part of the reason comes from the fact that I’m not sure I’ll be writing anymore romance. The other is business burnout. Not so much writing, but definitely business. I’m really hoping that this trip clears my head and allows me to come up with the answers that I’m currently seeking. In the meantime, I’m still getting a ton of reading done. I’m almost finished with Tempest Rising by Nicole Peeler. So far it’s been a fun read. I’ve liked it enough to buy the second book in the series. I’m looking forward to reading Jeaniene Frost’s new release, Eternal Kiss of Darkness because I really liked the hero of this book in her last release. It should be a great read. I also have Chloe Neill’s next two releases to look forward to on my trip. I really enjoyed the first book and I have to admit I’ve been saving the next two because I don’t know when she’ll have another release in the series. I do the same thing with Karen Marie Moning’s and Patricia Briggs’ books. I’m starting to do the savor purchase with Ilona Andrews now, although I do tend to re-read hers because I enjoy them so much.

I’ve decided not to blog much while I’m away. I thought about it, but I’d really like this excursion to be free of distractions. I hope you all have a wonderful rest of the summer.

Peace and warm brownies, Jordan

Thursday, July 22nd, 2010
Hectic, Crazy With No End In Sight

Things are gearing up as we near departure for our trip. I’m pretty much packed, but not at all sure if I have everything I need. (I’m guessing I have WAY too much.) There always comes a point where you stop caring and it becomes easier to just buy what is missing. (Hopefully nothing is missing, but you never know.) I think I’ve finally got the ‘right’ arrangement of books and games downloaded onto my iPad (you know, the important shit ;). I have one more coming in (Jeaniene Frost’s Eternal Kiss of Darkness) that I bought a few weeks ago. I think picking reading material for a trip is one of the hardest things to do. I never know what I’m going to be in the mood for at any given time and I like to have a variety of genres. Of course, it IS easier now that I’m not trying to pack paper books. I used to fill every cranny of a suitcase with books. Now I can just buy them and put them on my e-reader. Should be simple, but I’ve never been good at ‘choosing’ when it comes to books…as my dh can attest to. *g* I currently have 20 non-fiction works, covering everything from health to religion, 13 YA, 26 Urban Fantasies, 21 Paranormal Romances, 18 Historical Romances, 15 Contemporary Romances, and 25 Action/Adventure/Mystery. The latter category actually covers a lot of different types of books. Everything from The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown to Pattern Recognition by William Gibson. I know William Gibson is sci-fi, but I wasn’t sure how he’d been shelved. I was a little surprised by how many non-fiction books I have on my iPad, but I’m really looking forward to reading them. I have a lot of business books in the mix that apply to creative endeavors.

When you travel, how do you choose what to take?

Saturday, July 17th, 2010
Predators and The Sorcerer’s Apprentice

Today we had another movie marathon. We started the marathon out with Predators. I should probably preface this by saying I actually liked Alien vs. Predator in a bad B movie kind of way. Predators starts out with a pretty cool premise. People are randomly plucked off Earth and dropped onto an alien planet so that they may be hunted by the predators. We find out fairly quickly that the selection wasn’t quite as random as it appears. The people selected are ‘predators’ in their own right (ie gangsters, criminals, special ops, mercenaries, African death squad members, etc.). You get the picture. On this alien planet, there are two types of predators, big predators and little predators. The big predators hunt humans and little predators alike. There are also alien dogs. Think Pandora cat, but in dog form. So far, so good. This is unfortunately where the movie starts to fall apart. Instead of creating some interesting new ways to hunt the Predators or evade them, the writer/director decided to recreate several scenes from the original Predator movie right down to the character who stays behind to face the Predator with his shirt off and knife drawn (this time he’s Japanese, not Indian). Sigh, head hits seat in front of me. This is followed by skulls and spines being ripped out, the guy with the chain gun being shot right before the rest of the group opens fire on the jungle, tumbling off a hill pass a waterfall, mud covering the body to fight the Predator, etc. Basically, if you want to know how the new Predator movie is–watch the old one. :/

We took a break for lunch, then returned an hour or so later to see The Sorcerer’s Apprentice. I didn’t have super high hopes for the movie, but it turned out to be a pleasant escape. It doesn’t introduce anything new to movie making, but it is fun and action-packed. The magic flies freely and it doesn’t always work the way the sorcerers want it to, which I found refreshing. The basic premise is that Merlin was betrayed a thousand years ago. Before he dies, he tells Nic Cage to find his heir so that he/she can battle Morgana Le Fay. Once that occurs, the adventure begins. There’s nothing deep about the storytelling, but it’s definitely a popcorn flick. We’d gladly watch it again.

If I had to rank this weekend’s movies, I’d say Inception comes in first place (by a universe), The Sorcerer’s Apprentice would be second, Despicable Me third, and Predators fourth.

Friday, July 16th, 2010
Inception and Despicable Me

Today was the first day that I’ve been outside in a week. It was good to experience the big, blue room, but it was definitely hot. I don’t think humidity should be allowed when the temperature is a hundred and ten. Just saying.

We decided to have a mini-movie marathon so we went to see Inception and Despicable Me. Let me just start by saying that Inception was one of the smartest and best written movies that I’ve seen in a long, Long, LONG time. The whole cast was terrific. And I’m not a big Leonardo fan. Inception is a movie that is very difficult to describe. The main character is a ‘thought’ thief. He basically goes into people’s minds and steals their secrets–for a price. Time jumps back and forth in this film because not only are the characters dealing with dreams, they’re dealing with memories. A couple of men sitting near us walked out of the film because it’s not the type of movie you can get lost in and expect to catch up. No potty breaks. This movie assumes you are smart enough to understand what’s happening. We didn’t find it difficult to follow, but you have to pay attention. Inception is like the Matrix and Memento on steroids. If you didn’t like those films, then Inception is not for you. If you liked either of those films, then I cannot recommend this movie enough. We plan to see it again just to try to catch what we missed. Brilliant, brilliant film. Bravo Christopher Nolan!

For a palate cleanser, we caught Despicable Me. As expected, it was a very cute film, even if it didn’t really have a ‘story’. The kids are adorable and the minions steal the movie. You really can’t go wrong with this film. The kids around us were giggling uncontrollably and so were several of the adults. We would’ve probably enjoyed it more, but it’s really hard to go from a movie like Inception to a film like Despicable Me. One challenges your brain and the other is like cotton candy. LOL!

Tomorrow we’re either seeing Predator or The Sorcerer’s Apprentice. Can’t wait. 🙂

If you’ve seen Inception, I’m curious what you thought of the movie.

Wednesday, July 14th, 2010
Chirp, Chirp, Chirp

I know you can hear crickets around here with all the silence happening. To be honest, I’ve been busy with life and I have been reading a LOT. I could’ve done without the surgery, but all is well. Despite that hiccup, I have quite enjoyed reading the books. I’ve been playing catch up on my TBR pile. It’s been daunting, but it’s nice to make some progress. Not as much as I’d like, but some.

Our trip is coming up fast. I can tell that I’m not going to be ready. At least I’m partially packed. My French isn’t where it should be or needs to be. I’m going to have to cram in the next couple of weeks. Gulp.

I found out that I’ll be getting the rights back on some of my old ebooks in a few months. I’m really happy about that. I can’t wait to dig in there and re-edit them. I’ll either make some covers (depending on how my skills are) or hire someone to design some.

I’ve been re-doing my agent list. Every time I think I have the final list I hear something or read something and have to scratch off a name. It’s very frustrating and disheartening.

On a completely different track, there are so many movies I want to see right now. Has anyone seen Despicable Me? Predator? Sorcerer’s Apprentice? I know Inception comes out Friday. It’s another one on my list. I’ve been home recovering, so I haven’t been able to go out. If you’ve seen any of these films and want to post a mini-review, feel free. 🙂

Tuesday, July 6th, 2010
Charli Fibbed

Charli swore she wasn’t tagging anyone, but she fibbed. So here is my take on the questions.

1) What author do you own the most books by?

Stephanie Laurens. She is my comfort read.

2) What book do you own the most copies of?

Nightlife by Rob Thurman. One copy for the keeper shelf, one e-book copy, and one paperback to study craft.

3) Did it bother you that both those questions ended with prepositions?


4) What fictional character are you secretly in love with?

It’s a toss between Devil Cynster in Devil’s Bride and Gian Ren in Mine to Take. Sigh. Notice none come from what is considered ‘literary fiction’.

5) What book have you read the most times in your life (excluding
 picture books read to children; i.e., Goodnight Moon does not count)?

That’s actually a hard thing to figure out. Every year I re-read the first seven books in the Cynster series, the first few books in Christine Feehan’s Dark series, and the first few books from Christine Warren’s Other series. My guess is it would be a three-way tie.

6) What was your favorite book when you were ten years old?

Edgar Allan Poe’s work. Yes, I was a strange child. Not much has changed. *g*

7) What is the worst book you’ve read in the past year?

I actually haven’t read any bad books this past year. I’ve read a few that weren’t my cup of tea, but that doesn’t make them bad books.

8) There is no spoon and there is no number eight.

9) If you could force everyone you tagged to read one book, what would 
it be?

“Ignore Everybody” by Hugh MacLeod.

10) Who deserves to win the next Nobel Prize for Literature?

Don’t have a horse in this race.

11) What book would you most like to see made into a movie?

Old Man’s War by John Scalzi would be fun.

12) What book would you least like to see made into a movie?

The Twilight novella.

13) Describe your weirdest dream involving a writer, book, or literary

Too convoluted to even make sense.

14) What is the most lowbrow book you’ve read as an adult?

Since I don’t consider popular fiction ‘lowbrow’, I’m not sure how to answer this question.

15) What is the most difficult book you’ve ever read?

Anything and everything assigned in school that required a report afterwards. I stopped reading fiction for years because of the forced reading list.

16) What is the most obscure Shakespeare play you’ve seen?

I don’t think I have seen any obscure ones. I do love Taming of the Shrew and Much Ado About Nothing.

17) Do you prefer the French or the Russians?

France all the way, baby.

18) Roth or Updike?

No, thank you. How about Briggs, Andrews, Viehl, Frost, or Chance? 😉

19) David Sedaris or Dave Eggers?

Sorry, but I’m full.

20) Shakespeare, Milton, or Chaucer?

I liked the Canterbury Tales, but I’d have to say Shakespeare.

21) Austen or Eliot?

Austen, but I do believe it’s like comparing apples to oranges.

22) What is the biggest or most embarrassing gap in your reading?

The classics.

23) What is your favorite novel?

No idea. I like too many to name just one.

24) Play?

Pirates of Penzance

25) Poem?

Morning (Love Sonnet XXVII) by Pablo Neruda

26) Essay?

It’s silly, but it was an essay that Oprah wrote for her ‘O’ Magazine about being an outsider. It really struck a cord.

27) Short story?

Again, too many to name.

28) Work of nonfiction?

The War of Art by Steven Pressfield.

29) Who is your favorite writer?

I have too many to name. There is no ‘one’ favorite.

30) Who is the most overrated writer alive today?

I don’t think I should answer that because it would only be my opinion and not based on fact. Besides, I don’t want the hate mail.

31) What is your desert island book?

The SAS Survival Guide.

32) And … what are you reading right now?

Devil Inside by Jenna Black, Thanks for Coming by Mara Altman, The Book of Animal Ignorance by John Lloyd, Burnt Offerings by Laurell K. Hamilton, On the Edge by Ilona Andrews, Kabbalah Revealed by Rav Michael Laitman, PhD, and The Battle of the Labyrinth by Rick Riordan.