Archive for March, 2013

Sunday, March 31st, 2013
Why I Have To Stop Reading Reviews

In the last few months, I’ve made the mistake of reading reviews for books I’ve purchased. (Did you think I was talking about MY reviews? *ggg Other than checking out the first review on a new book, I don’t tend to read my reviews. It’s hard enough to write without factoring those into the picture.) Anyway, back to my original topic. I have checked out reviews for the last few books that I’ve bought only to encounter either spoilers or hot button subjects (ie a rape occurs, a hero is killed, a romance that is set up in book one falls apart in later books with no intention of progressing, etc.) that basically ruined my reading experience before I even opened the book. You would’ve thought after the first time it happened that I would’ve learned not to look, but apparently not.

I think these spoiler/hot buttons would’ve been less traumatic had I just read them and been shocked firsthand. The sad thing is that because of these topics/spoilers I’ve avoided the books. I’m dreading reading about these things, even though they are from some of my favorite authors/series. I don’t know how to get past the mental block that tells me these horrific things are coming. With one of the series, I’m going to just charge through the book because it’s truly one of my favorite authors. With the other, I may be done with the series. Even if the author turns it around in later books, I’m not sure I can ‘trust’ them any longer. (Weird, I know.) Unfortunately, in the third circumstance, I won’t be reading past the first book in the series, even though I think the writing is good and I’m enjoying the story. The direction the series takes is not one I care to go in.

Yes, I realize I’m talking about works of ‘fiction’, but I guess for me to fully immerse myself into the books I have to go into them ‘blind’. Bad things can and should happen in books, but they have to be written in a way that will allow me (as the reader) to get past them. If I can’t do that, then I have to move onto a different series/author. The only genre that gets a pass from me is Horror. With Horror, all bets are off the table.

Tuesday, March 26th, 2013
Revelations In Writing

I’m going to use a southern expression to describe how I’ve been feeling over the past couple of weeks. I have been busier than a cat trying to cover crap on a tile floor. AIDAN’S MATE is finally beginning to wrap up. I should be will be finished by Friday. I’ve been editing as a go along, so the book should be in pretty good shape before I send it off to have others look through it. I have also been working on the edits for my YA. That’s taking a little longer because I’m going slowly through the manuscript. I thought I was anal before, but I’ve reached a whole new level with this book.

Had a weird thing happen the other day when I was reading THE WOLF WITHIN by Cynthia Eden. I was reading along, enjoying the story immensely, when I had a writing epiphany strike. I’m not even sure how to describe it. I’ve been working on a lot of craft issues (show/tell, description, characterization, etc.), so there’s been a lot of things I’ve been trying to keep aware of while I write. As I was reading Cynthia’s story, I realized that her stories are all in motion. The scenes are constantly moving. Again, it’s very hard for me to describe what I mean by ‘in motion’. I’m not talking about scene and sequence, though that definitely happens. It’s like her characters are constantly moving forward in some way or another. I realized that all the authors I admire write this way. The reason it struck me as an epiphany is because I realized at that very same moment that I have a lot of ‘static’ scenes in my books (ie characters in rooms talking). They are discussing important things, but they are not ‘moving’. Seems like a small thing in the scheme of an entire novel, but that one thing actually impacts all the other craft issues I’ve been working on. Dh said it was a ‘bigger picture’ epiphany, which is wonderful. Now I just have to figure out how my favorite authors do it. Laughs maniacally!

It looks like I’ll be re-releasing RED (Dead World series Bk. 1) toward the end of May.

Tuesday, March 19th, 2013
Email Issues Again…

I seem to be having problems reaching some yahoo email addresses. I received a lovely letter from a reader named Jacklyn, who asked me about continuing the Phantom Warriors and the Atlanteans. I responded, but it bounced, so I’m going to answer her here (hope you don’t mind Jack). I’ll never say never about writing another Phantom or Atlantean book, but at this time I have no plans to do so. I’ve wrapped up both series with THE DARK KING. I’m pretty happy with how that book turned out. I have other books/series that I want to explore (ie Ghost Hunters, the Dead World series, Moonlight Kin, Romantic Suspense, UF, more YA, Horror western, etc.).

I’m still writing Aidan’s Mate. I thought Damon was stubborn. He doesn’t have anything on Aidan. It will be released in April as planned, but I have no idea what the book length will be anymore. Aidan is quite uncooperative. I am also currently working on edits for my YA. I’d planned to get the finished book to a friend by Friday so she could format it for print in time for the Romantic Times Convention. That’s not going to happen. There have been some new developments on that front that have temporarily (possibly permanently) delayed my plans. Will keep you posted as more info becomes available.

Everything is moving along, albeit at a snail’s pace, but still moving. Tonight, I plan to celebrate Dh’s b-day, so I have to get my next batch of edits done before he gets home. 🙂

Tuesday, March 12th, 2013
Phantom Warriors Volume 1 & Volume 2

UPDATE: I’ve uploaded the books. VOLUME 1 will be on SALE at AMAZON for ONE WEEK ONLY.

In the next few days, I will be uploading these two new Phantom Warriors’ bundles. It’ll probably take a day or two for them to show up. These are also being released in paperback. This will take a few weeks minimum. The ONLY thing different from the originals is one cut scene in Volume 2. It’s a couple thousand words and was originally part of a different storyline I’d intended for Talon. That’s it! I’m mainly combining the Phantoms into volumes because I want to put them out in paperback.

Dar at WICKED SMART DESIGNS has done a fabulous job with the new covers:



Thursday, March 7th, 2013
Random House–Reason Number Five For Why Authors Need Attorneys

I’m not going to quote what has been laid out in the contracts, but I am going to link to them. You can read about them HERE, HERE, and HERE. These particular contracts from these Random House lines (ie HYDRA, ALIBI, etc.) are equivalent to what the record companies did to many of the old rock and blues artists from the forties and fifties. They took the rights to all their songs and left the artists (and their families/kids) penniless.

Now it’s easy to think, ‘Oh they were just stupid artists/musicians’. To a certain degree that’s true, but most people back in the day couldn’t afford attorney fees. Heck, these days most people can’t afford the cost of an attorney. Six years ago, you could’ve read a publishing contract and caught ‘most’ of the bad clauses without needing a law degree. I say most because there were always a few bad clauses that were worded oddly and snuck through. These days you need to be a VERY GOOD intellectual property attorney to see all the ‘hidden’ clauses in a publishing contract. And I say ‘very good’ because an average intellectual property attorney or an attorney who practices another type of law WILL miss some of these clauses. They are that convoluted and that dangerous to any writer’s future

That does not mean that ALL Random House lines are following suit. They are not. There are still good lines to write for within Random House and several of the other publishers. I’m not picking on Random House. This is simply a warning.

The saddest part about these contracts is that they play on people’s dreams. This is particularly true for NEW AUTHORS, who don’t have firsthand experience in the industry. It was the same way in the forties and fifties with the music industry. When you’re trying to be heard and someone offers you a chance to be, it’s hard to turn and walk away, but sometimes that is the very best thing you can do for yourself and for your family. Unlike in the forties and fifties, there are many other ways you can be ‘heard’ these days. Keep that in mind, so you don’t become another sad statistic.