Monday, December 28, 2009

Between the Pages

 “I enjoyed the story dear but….”

“I know Mom, the sex.  Please eliminate it from the next story.”  My mother asks me this every time she reads one of my books but I sense she is beginning to lose hope.

“Great story but could you open the bedroom door a little wider?”  This from another writer after critiquing one of my middle books – obviously a more liberal reader than my mother.

“Yikes!”  What is a writer to do?

Well, for this writer the only thing to do is to listen to the characters.  It’s their life after all.  It’s they who will determine if the passion is going to sizzle off the page and they’ll share that with the reader or not.  Their personalities and life histories will dictate what happens - whether the bedroom door will be sealed tighter than Fort Knox or whether their love will be there for the world to see.  And hey, depending on what’s going on – dodging bullets might take precedence over sex.  Yes, Mom I can see your smile from here at reading that glimmer of hope.

That being said, there is a romance in every story  – and how that passion manifests itself differs from story to story.  I’ve had characters that would go at it lost in the middle of the rain forest and those that the hint of what is to come is enough to make them blush.  It’s all in the personality.

So that’s it, sex as I see it – at least between the pages of a book.

Sex, it’s all about the character or is it?


Into a chance to win something in the lull between 
one celebration and the next?  
Check out Michelle Moran's Website - a copy of her book, Cleopatra's Daughter and a piece of Roman history are up for grabs.  If you love history, Michelle's where it's at.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas

It's almost here!   Remember that feeling of anticipation as a kid?

I remember looking again and again at the presents under the tree.  The rush of cold air as the door opened and closed, and outside snow drifted to the ground and covered the snow fort you'd made only yesterday.  That safe snuggly feeling of being warm and cozy while the wind picked up outside.  The treats that Mom made only once a year tempting you as they unthawed on the counter.  That good natured rap on the knuckles when you reached for one and were told to wait.  Because nothing started until Christmas Eve and then it was all official.  In our house that's when gifts were opened, when Santa arrived (usually about 8:00 p.m. or so).  And our Santa made a lot of noise.  He clanged bells (we later learned they were spoons) and roared loudly while we kids hid downstairs under the couch.  For in our house, Santa might bring gifts but we always thought he was a little scary.  And while we appreciated his gifts, we certainly didn't want to encounter him - who knew what might become of a little kid!

So with Christmas Eve just around the corner, the festivities begin.  We're heading out to the Qu'Appelle Valley, to supper with family on the edge of a wintery snow-swept lake.  Can't think of a better way to spend the early hours of Christmas Eve.  And then later tonight, back in the city, we'll open gifts while "It's a Wonderful Life" plays in the background.

Merry Christmas everyone!

Ring of Desire 2009
From the Dust 2007

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Who Said Windshield Wipers Weren't Romantic?

"I'm dreaming of a white Christmas" takes on a different meaning when you're wrestling snow iced streets packed with last minute shoppers.  That's what I did today and that's what brings up the subject of this post - windshield wipers.  Yes, you read right - windshield wipers!

They're not made for climates that see sub-zero temperatures and snow.  Most wipers are ineffective at taking snow and ice off the windshield and today, the wipers completely froze up and refused to work - not great with temperatures diving, snow pelting the windshield and grey skies threatening more to come.  What about a winter setting for windshield wipers - where their resting place is a few inches higher, high enough to reach the warmed windshield and prevent freezing?  What about a car that was actually made for winter?  What about...  Okay, sorry I was on a roll.  But a little planning sure doesn't hurt and there's a lot of us winter folk out here that would truly appreciate a real made for winter vehicle.  Did I mention planning?

In writing planning can prevent a lot of grief like having to untangle the thread of a subplot that isn't quite as logical as you first thought.  Or planning for the Christmas rush so that you can find time to write even during the craziness leading up to the holidays.

This year I forgot to plan and so the book waited until my characters began screaming at me.   But now with the book signing nicely completed, Christmas presents bought and wrapped, it's almost time to get back at it.  Almost? - maybe past time.

But my fave time of the season is just around the corner.  Christmas Day when everything settles down, the stores close and we can just sit back and enjoy.  Maybe even time to write should I awaken early enough.  In the meantime, there's just one more present to wrap - maybe while dreams of functional windshield wipers dance through my head.

And your dreams?  Do you plan for them to be slightly more romantic?

Ring of Desire 2009
From the Dust 2007

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Pre Christmas Jumble

Yesterday it seemed that every store was out of everything.  Did they all collaborate and decide shortages caused demand?  So with everything in tight supply including time I was looking forward to barbecued steak - heck we were even going to shovel off the deck for the occasion.

So the groceries are unloaded and the steak is no where to be found.  It made it to the check out - I set it on the counter myself but it didn't make it to the bill.  Once you have braved the throngs of shoppers you're not ready to run it again - steak or no steak.  So steak was off the menu.  It was just one of those days in the pre Christmas jumble.

And today it's off to Ring of Desire's official book launch.  If you happen to be kicking around Regina stop by the Book & Brier this afternoon.

Til next time.


Thursday, December 17, 2009

Time Slipped By

It's that time of year where there's just too much going on and not enough time in the day.  I can hardly wait for next week when things begin to slow down and it's time to actually enjoy the season.  I'm teasing myself with the thought of a fire dancing merrily away and a book in hand.  Maybe, just maybe things will slow down enough for that to happen.

Christmas is just around the corner and that is unbelievable. Saturday is the official book launch for "Ring of Desire" and that too seems unbelievable.  Where has the time gone?

So with me debating lost time - here is another date to remember:

Tomorrow, December 18 I'll be visting Marcia Colette's blog.  Not only does she embrace the creepier side of writing but she's willing to share her space with me for a day.  Stop on by and leave a comment and you may win a copy of my new book "Ring of Desire."


Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Rewind to The Great Escape

Join the festivities at  the Romance Studio where I'm blogging at their holiday blog. 

Yes the holidays are upon us and everything is in fast motion.  I for one can't believe it's December and Christmas is just around the corner.  I must be in a time warp.  But for now let's forget the rush and the craziness and take a day to just sit back and enjoy, or alternatively - there's "The Great Escape."  Read all about my Great Escape at the Romance Studio.


Saturday, December 5, 2009

What Was I Thinking?

The box of author books has arrived and I'm thrilled except for one thing...  Something to remember for future.  When picking that promo picture - going for that natural rather than poised and stuffy picture - fine.  But note to self - look at it in black and white before making your choice.


Apparently there is a difference!  So should you read my new book and take a look at the promo picture just turn that page and chalk it up to a lesson learned.  Squinting into the sun while on vacation does not transpose well in certain kinds of medium.  And please be gentle and leave it up to me to say, "What was I thinking?"
                                                                          A Lake in Thailand
It's been a week of lessons learned from organizing a book launch that for a time hitched and hiccoughed and seemed like it would never get off the ground to e-mails that went unanswered.  Then I read that readers were tired of being inundated with promotional material, that contests didn't get their attention, that give aways meant nothing.  After reading that I debated dropping the promo monster, leaving him snorting and gasping in the hallway and just getting on the cheapest flight to anywhere with a stack of good books and a well earned break.

I get not wanting to follow an author who just trumpets "buy my book."  But the rest - what is an author to do?  Because you dreamt it does not mean they will come!

On the shores of Tonle Sap Lake, Cambodia

So I've determined that there's nothing to do but to carry on - keep pounding the pavement and when I get completely frustrated just work on writing the best book I can.  And that's what I'm doing this morning - doing what I love best - writing!

And this afternoon, while thinking of foreign shores, I'm going out to support an author and buy a book - someone I've never read before!

And you - what is your day looking like?