Thursday, March 27, 2008

DO NOT Hurt the Puppy!

Warning: Rant about to happen.

A few nights ago, the DVD d'jour was I Am Legend. I don't want to spoil the story for anyone, so if you haven't seen the movie yet, but plan to, then stop reading now.

I almost didn't finish watching this movie because the dog died! WORSE, the hero had to kill his beloved companion! And this isn't the first movie I've watched lately in which dogs were hurt of killed. In the movie Invasion (with Nicole Kidman and Daniel Craig), dogs could recognize the humans infected with aliens and as soon as they did -- bye-bye doggie. UGH! And don't even get me started about the dead dogs in No Country for Old Men!

What a disturbing trend! Now I'm a dog lover from waaay back (my family has had at least one dog for as long as I can remember). I like cats too, and most all little furry creatures, but I digress...

I'll admit that what happened to the dog in I Am Legend was germane to the plot, but I still didn't like it. As for the other two movies mentioned, NOPE! They could have totally left out the dog killing and not affected the story at all. I'm not very squeamish, and I even LIKE a bit of gratuitous violence now and then, but NOT when it is directed at animals!

Okay, rant over.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

The Great Peep Hunt!

Happy Easter to those who celebrate the holiday!

We're having a virtual Peep Hunt over on the Romance Bandits blog today.(just click on the title of this blog post to take you there) So I decided to "hide" my Peeps (green of course! After all they are Irish Peeps.) here on my personal blog.

So happy Peep hunting and hey, you've already found one. We're giving away some great prizes!

Friday, March 21, 2008

My "Official" Title!

After long months of waiting, I finally have my "official" title! The book formerly known as Death in the Fens will be published with the title The Wild Sight: An Irish tale of deadly deeds and forbidden love.

I'm so excited after all this time to have a title to pimp! Er, um, I mean PROMOTE!

Plus, the book is available for pre-order on Amazon! Just search for my name. Right now my sales ranking is somewhere in the 6,000,000s. Nowhere to go but UP!

Now that I have a title, here's hoping that a cover won't be far behind!

Friday, March 14, 2008

An Infomercial

I now interrupt my own blog to plug some of the other things going on in my writing life...

First, and most exciting- -"the book formerly known as" Death In The Fens is AVAILABLE FOR PRE-ORDER ON AMAZON! Never mind that the title listed on Amazon is NOT the "official" title. But the publication date really is October, 2008! So still no title and of course, no cover, but A PUBLICATION DATE! That's progress! If you go on Amazon and do a search for my name, THERE IT IS!

Second, I'm now part of a new Yahoo group for Sourcebook authors and readers. Here's a link if anybody is interested in joining. But more than that, I'd love for you to join MY Yahoo Group (see the blog sidebar) for periodic updates on my book and my writing.

Click here to join Discovering_Romance_with_Sourcebooks
Click to join Discovering_Romance_with_Sourcebooks

And finally, since this is my Infomercial, might as well drop in a plug for the Romance Bandits. Romantic Times is holding their annual convention in Pittsburg, PA April 16--20th. Several of the Banditas (including Donna MacMeans, Christie Kelley, KJ Howe, and Trish Milburn) will be there. Here's your chance to meet some REAL LIVE Romance Bandits. Unfortunately, time and resources (read $$) have conspired to prevent me from attending. Maybe next year...

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Progress -- Sort of

I received my copy edits yesterday! I know this is hardly cause for celebration, but these are my VERY FIRST and I'm excited.

I've heard a few horror stories about copy editors who changed huge hunks of prose or questioned writers' facts and research. After a fast scan of my manuscript (which still has no title -- ARGH!), I'm happy to report there are none of those things! In fact, I just might LURVE my copy editor!

And if I'm this happy over the copy edits, when I get the galleys I'll probably be in "First Time Author" Heaven! Pathetic, I know, but I just can't help myself.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Name Games

We're playing a NAME GAME over on the Bandit Blog today, courtsey of Kate Johnson/Cat Marsters who originally posted these nine ways to generate a cool name:

1. YOUR ROCK STAR NAME: (first pet & current street name);
2. YOUR "FLY Guy/Girl" NAME: (first initial of first name, firstthree letters of your middle name)
3. YOUR DETECTIVE NAME: (favorite color, favorite animal)
4. YOUR SOAP OPERA NAME: (middle name, city where you were born)
5. YOUR STAR WARS NAME: (the first 3 letters of your last name,first 2 letters of your first name, first 2 letters of mom's maiden)
6. SUPERHERO NAME: ("The", your favorite color, favorite drink)
7. NASCAR NAME: (the first name of your grandfathers)
8. FUTURISTIC NAME: ( the name of your favorite perfume/cologne and the name of your favorite kind of shoes)
9.WITNESS PROTECTION NAME: (mother & father's middle name )

So hop on over to the Romance Bandits (click on the title of this blog for the link) and join in the fun! We are also giving away a prize for correctly guessing the identity of nine different Bandits based on their "new names."

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Did Dennis Lehane Start This Way?

Very often, readers and new writers ask those of us who have circled the block a few times and have the completed manuscripts to show for it: Where do you get your ideas?

My usual answer is EVERYWHERE! However, since that might not be terribly helpful to those who seriously do want to know, here's an example of how story ideas can indeed be found EVERYWHERE.

A few days ago while I was out running errands, I stopped in at the lovely Golden Arches for a quick lunch. As I prepared to dunk my first McNugget into my chosen sauce, the lady at the table across from me came over and asked, "Are you going to be here long?"

"As long as it takes me to finish my lunch," I replied. (Obviously I exceed the size limit for the plastic tubes and paraphernalia in the "play yard.")

"Can you please keep an eye on my granddaughter while I use the restroom?" the lady asked, indicating a little girl of about four, who was busily munching a french fry.

I said I would and consumed my own fries and McNuggets while the child swung her legs and kept eating for the entire five minutes her grandmother was gone. However, once I finished and left, I was struck by how many possible story ideas presented themselves in my little scenario.
  1. The grandmother doesn't return.
  2. The grandmother returns only to find me and her granddaughter are (as in the succinct title of the DVD I recently watched) Gone Baby Gone.
  3. The grandmother returns and accuses me of abusing the child.
  4. While the grandmother is gone, the child shows me her bruises and asks me to protect her from grandma.
I think you get my drift, and I didn't even mention the hunky EMT drinking coffee at a nearby table, nor the homeless man hitting up people for change in the parking lot.

Now you know what I mean when I say ideas are EVERYWHERE, even at your local fast food joint! Who knows, maybe even Dennis Lehane (who wrote the original novel Gone Baby Gone) got ideas under the Golden Arches! Okay, maybe not.