13,600 / 20,000 (68%)

Samba story
7,926 / 8,000 (99.1%)

S.M. (Book 1)
580 / 10,000 (5.8%)

S.M. (Book 2)
1,010 / 10,000 (10%)

4,032 / 10,000 (40.5%)

ASPCA Day is April 10

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Location: Puerto Rico

Monday, February 28, 2005

What Kind of Novel Should I Write?

EROTICA! - Wet, salty and delicious You are driven
to excite the reader into a literal froth with
your literary talents! You are a connoisseur of
the carnal side of humanity from Kink to
high-speed BJs in the front seat of a speeding
Jag! Sex is GOOD. Penthouse and the Internet
after dark are your inspirations!

What Kind of Novel Should I Write?
brought to you by Quizilla


Oh, c'mon! Is this some kind of sick joke? Is the universe trying to frustrate me further than I am already? I tried writing erotica and failed miserably, so I gave it up altogether. I'm barely good enough to write romantic comedies. So now this test says I should be writing erotica? Maybe this test should be renamed What Kind of Novel Should I Read? Because the only thing this exam tested was preference in reading not writing. *grumbles*

I knew I'd chicken out

My iPaq just showed me that today's the dateline to submit to the Aphrodite's Unlaced writing contest, Sexual Healing. Not that I'd thought about participating. Okay, I'm lying. I did think about submitting a short story, although I didn't have the faintest idea of what to write about. And I wasn't going to submit it to be critiqued in my critique loops either. I just wanted to submit something - anything - even if it got rejected. But I kept putting it off. I knew that in the long run I'd chicken out of this contest too.

Final update on shocker - peace of mind

I just heard from Nisa. She explained to me that I was denied access to FTHRW_Workshops because this month's workshop is already in session, and I didn't sign up to take it. Once the workshop ends, the attendees are unsubscribed. Then the ones attending the following workshop are subscribed. So, it seems like yes, I'm subscribed to the workshops in May and June, but I won't get the "Thank You" email until the time approaches. Well, this certainly clarifies the whole thing. *smiles* I just wish they'd have been more especific about it in the note you receive when the membership is denied.

Another update my denied membership

Last night I wrote to the moderators of FTHRW_Workshops, hoping to get a response about them denying me entrance to the group. Well, today I received answers from both Arwen, who I've know in other FTHRW groups, and Nisa. They still direct me to the FTHRW 2005 Workshop Schedule webpage and ask me to sign up for the workshops I want to participate in. *sighs* I've done that FOUR times already. Nothing. The registration seems to take off because I get a "thank you" message. But somehow along the way something goes wrong, and they're not receiving my application. I don't know what could be. It can't be the firewall because it'd say something about "blocking" it. This is a very upsetting situation. Anyway, I emailed both Arwen and Nisa back explaining all this. Let's see what happens. If nothing else, then I won't bother taking any of their workshops. Their workshops sound great though, but sadly I won't keep pursuing this and annoy someone in the process.

Sunday, February 27, 2005

Goal for this week

Okay, that's it! I've had it with me! No more feeling sorry for myself! I'm sick and tired of hearing myself whine. I set up goals, but I've accomplished nothing these past two weeks, and that's not good. Maybe I was expecting to do too much too soon. So for this week, I'm going to keep things simple to get me started. I'm setting up one simple goal - to do some critiquing for the Critique Corner. That's all I'm going to do this week.

Update on my denied membership

I just received an email from the webmaster of FTHRW, Cathy. She says that my name isn't listed in the FTHRW Members Roster due to the fact that the previous webmaster was in maternity leave during summer, when I became a member. So it's possible that I'm not the only member left out. However, she points out that she doesn't see a reason why I was denied membership to FTHRW_Workshops, since the roster isn't taken into consideration when verifying members. *sighs* The mystery continues... BTW, Cathy promised me to add me to the roster sometime this week.

New guilty pleasure

Blog-hopping! Yes, I'm into blog-hopping. Okay, it's not like I've not blog-hop before, but before it was just between Lynn's and Teresa's blogs. But yesterday Nancy, my writing challenge partner, emailed me and mentioned her addiction to Romancing the Blog. So I went by to check it out. It happens that it lists all these blogs from other romance writers. I was even able to add mine to the list. Tonight, when I logged into the internet, I thought I'd pass by Romancing the Blog and see if my blog was added to the list. Well, to make a long story short, I've been blog-hopping for 2 1/2 hours. Now I know why Nancy is addicted to it! So blame her for my addiction to Romancing the Blog. *lol*

BTW, the blog fever hit Nancy, and now she has her own blog now. *giggles* Check it out!



I just logged into my email and saw an email from FTHRW_Workshops, which I had recently applied to join since I'm interested in taking a few of the workshops that FTHRW offers. So I opened it thinking that it was the usual polite email from them telling me that I was accepted and the rules of the group. But no, the email said that my request to join it was denied. That was it. No explanations for such action. And just last night Nisa, who I think it's one of the moderators, emailed me asking if I was a member of From The Heart Romance Writers Chapter (FTHRW) of RWA and I quickly emailed her back telling her that I did. So, what happened? I've no idea. The worst part is that I erased her email and didn't save her email addy. *sighs* Okay, I'll email the moderators asking for an explanation.

Saturday, February 26, 2005

Shaking off the blues

Why did you change your blog's look?, you ask. Well, tonight while checking out the latest comments to my posts and answering them, I was looking at my blog and thought, "It's so blue. Gosh, I went with my mood." Suddenly it was like Thor's hammer had hit me. Did I put the verb in the past tense? Yes, I guess...no, I know I did. Another thought quickly struck me. I'd chosen the blue template for my blog because it went with my current mood.

Let's face it, I've been feeling blue for a long time. Part of it due to great frustration with my writing skills. That frustration coming from failure. Add to fear to that mix. Fear to fail again. Another part from stress at work. That blues feeling crept on me until it took complete hold.

A final thought hit me. That means that what happened to me two nights ago must have been a meltdown. I woke up at 3:35 am with an upset stomach. I knew it had to be the tension. My back had been aching all night, and I was sure it was from accumulated stress. I went to the bathroom for some Mylanta, and then I crawled back to bed but couldn't sleep. At this point I realized I was still feeling tense, so I put a CD from Enya, and taking out my iPaq, I reclined in my bed to read an ebook. While I read, I concentrated on my breathing, trying to relax and letting the tension dripped out of me. It wasn't until 4:45 am that I was able to go back to sleep.

The next day, Friday, I went to work although my stomach still felt sore. At least it was only half-day since I had to work today until mid-day. Anyway, this afternoon I woke up from a nap and my head was buzzing with ideas. I had these two cool titles for two vampire stories, this story line for an erotica series called The Tutor, and a blurb for another story.

So tonight when I looked at my blog, I realized the look of it wasn't me. I was no longer feeling blue. Au contraire, I felt energized. So out of the (not so wide) variety of templates, I chose this new one 'coz it looks the chirpiest.

Hmm... What chased the blues away? Was it that big bag of Valentine M&M's I bought a few days before at Walgreens for a 75% discount? Or was it my new electronic toys? Or maybe somehow, something deep inside me snap up and said "Enough!"?

Yes, you're in the right place!

Dear frequent blog readers,

No need to scratch your eyes or adjust your monitor. You're not in the wrong blog. You have arrived safely to my blog, The Misadventures of an Unpublished Writer. Trust me, it's no mistake. You're here with me. *grins* But it looks so different, you say. Well, yes, I did change the look of it. Hope you like the new look. *grins*

Something to laugh about

This is too funny! I saw it posted at one of the loops I'm in and I knew I had to post it here. As a romance writer, you've got to have a good sense of humor. And let's face it, this is hilarious!


If you lack a sense of humor, then don't look at it.

Friday, February 25, 2005

Exploring my new toys

Tonight I sat down to explore my new electronic toys. I got out the stuff for the foldable keyboard I received yesterday. The keyboard doesn't need electricity as I thought before when I noticed the AC output on it. So I read further and found out that the AC adapter of the iPaq can be used by it, so when I plug it to the foldable keyboard, the iPaq doesn't loose charge. Is this cool or what?! *grins* I can carry all three comfortably on my purse, and take them out and write whatever pops in my mind whenever the Muse strikes me. Right now it's laying on my bed, where for the past hour I've been writing. Gosh, this is better than a laptop or an AlphaSmart! No distractions!

Last week Walgreens had put on special the CompactFlash and SD cards, both used by my PC Pocket, so I bought two of each. I'm using the SD cards (128 MB) for storing my ebooks, and the CF cards (also 128 MB) for storing whatever I write. I learned how to save things on .doc instead of Pocket Word so Word can read it on my PC. I've already got a little blurb for my next story stored in one of the CF cards. *grins*

Missed chatting with Ellora Cave's editor

I can't freaking believe it! For three weeks, since Kristen announced it in Romance Divas, I eagerly awaited for this chat. Even if I went in in a lurking mode, I wanted to be there. But the grand day arrived and I MISSED the chat. AND WHY? Because last night of all nights cable modem went down!!! I kept trying and trying - I even called the Cable company - but no signal. Geez, I was so pissed.

Now I just went by the Romance Divas and read the posts about the chat with Mrs. Gorlinsky. Everyone is raving about it! Me, I'm turning green with envy here.

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Psyched about tonight's chat

The chat with Raelene Gorlinsky, Managing Editor at Ellora's Cave is tonight. For some time now I've been interested in submitting either to Ellora's Cave (or their other imprint Cerridwen Press). I'm not an erotic writer - yet. I never thought about writing on that genre, but I guess the fact that I'm in a critique group where most published writers are erotic romance writers have sort of rub on me. *chuckles* So I'm specially interested in finding out more about what EC's editors look for in the MS.

According to the articles I've read, Ellora's Cave has become a force to be reckon with in the publishing industry, a multi-million publisher. It mostly publishes erotica on ebook format, but now they've expanded to printed books too, which seems to be giving them an edge. EC has grown a lot since it first started. Of course, I've heard rumors in the loops I'm in that this fast growing is causing problems. That and EC's new crazy contract. So up to a point I'd like to hear what Mrs. Gorlinsky has to offer aspiring writers.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

My new electronic toys!

YES!!! It's finally here! The foldable keyboard for my iPaq PC Pocket arrived this afternoon. *boogies* You can imagine how surprised I was when I saw the parcel over my bed. I mean, I was expecting to arrive any moment now, but I've had such a bad day at work, I thought it would spill into everything else in my life. Anyway, it wasn't able to open it until now that I had the time to sit calmly and test it. This is so cool! It's almost like a full size keyboard, so it's comfortable for me to type in it. I sat on my bed and started typing. Gosh! This is like a laptop but better! I can use it anywhere around the house. And the best part is that I can't log into the internet. So, no distractions! *laughs* Since it barely measures 3 1/2" X 5 1/2", I can carry it in my small backpack, together with the iPaq. Now I can sit anywhere whenever the inspiration hits me and write, then save everything in .doc format on a SD card and later "drag & drop" into my computer. I just love my new toys!!! *grins*

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Crossing fingers

I finished answering Sarah's email. I just hope I haven't scared her away as a possible critique partner.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Review of my long weekend

Well, the way I see it this long weekend is officially over, so I'm taking stock of where my time went.

Things that I did:

1. Started reading "A Fairy Godmother" by Mercedes Lackey
2. Went shopping (Borders, K-Mart, and Walgreens)
3. Visited my cousin and repaired her computer
4. Came up with the premise for a suspense vampire romance story

Things that I did but shouldn't have:

1. Played "Jawbreaker" on my iPaq
2. Downloaded some MP3's
3. Posted on Romance Divas's Chit Chat forum
4. Logged on RWAonline to check out Sherryl Wood's last comments on my work

Things that I had to do but didn't:

1. Critique Shannon's and Car's chapters
2. Think about a title and a hook
3. Work on Trista's website

Sunday, February 20, 2005

Another possible CP enquires

After not hearing from Jane in such a long time, and seeing the RWClist's critique partner list posted twice this month, I had pretty much given up on this whole CP thing. So I was suprised to find an email from someone interested in being my CP. Her name is Sarah. She wants to be my critique and writing challenge partner. That sounds good. She is into writing contemporary paranormal dealing with vampires and witches like me. I hope I don't scare her away, like I did with Jane.


I can't believe it's Sunday already! The long weekend is almost over! Where has time gone? I still have this long list of things I needed to do taped to the monitor of my computer, and I've not even started them. I'd hoped to do them all since it is 3-day weekend. Okay, maybe I still can do some of them tonight.

First, I'll tackle the critiques. I'm way past due on that area, so this is my priority. I just feel like heel for not pulling my weight at Critique Corner, and I don't want to be kicked out of the group. Even if I can't upload the critiques tonight, I'll be happy just to have finished critiquing Shannon's and Car's work since I've got the most chapters to critique. I can leave Amy's work, which is shorter, to critique during the week.

Hmm... Then there is the writing challenge game I started with Rae. I've not sent her my title and hook yet, and it's been a week since she sent me hers. Gosh, she must hate me by now. *sighs* Okay, while I wait for the pizza to arrive, I'm going to surf the web for an 80's song title and come up with a hook. I'll email her this and then send her another email for the next challenge: write the ending.

I can do this, I can do this... *repeats mantra*

Friday, February 18, 2005

Sherryl's workshop: Final Day (Update)

I just came back from reading Sherryl's post on my final homework. According to her, I was suppossed to write how the incidents affected the conflict. Duh! Am I stupid or what? Tomorrow I'll revised the incidents. As for the pivotal moments, she liked #2 better, and I agree that it's one of those time-tested moments that we all know how it's going to turn out yet we hold our breath nevertheless awaiting the outcome. *chuckles*

Oh, well, I don't mind not having the whole plot for this story. I'm more than happy with at least having a good idea of what the hero and heroine are. After all, the heroine's name was all I had since she was just briefly mentioned in a phone conversation between Katherine and Margaret. So having a good definition of who she is is more than I was hoping for when I started the workshop.

Sherryl's workshop: Final Day

Last night I went to bed and didn't do my writing homework. So this morning I tried to do some brainstorming while at work. I couldn't simply come up with any good incidents. My mind was blank. What can I say? I'm a pantser; I don't plan that far ahead. So I finally gave up trying so hard and wrote some very vague ideas I had circulating in my mind. I know they kind of suck, but this is a story I've not figured out the ending yet or the feel.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

PC Cast & Gena Showalter chat tonight

Well, I showed up to the chat after all if a bit late. I didn't much though. It was a good one, albeit quiet. I didn't asked much since I admit I've never given too much thought to writing a story with interspecies. Somehow I don't find it appealing. I guess there's not a futuristic romance writer in me - for now.

Total of incidents and pivotal moments brainstormed tonight: 0

Ebay rules!

Rae, my writing challenge partner, suggested me to get the folded keyboard for my iPaq so I could carry them both around and feel free to write whenever I wanted. I admit the thought had crossed my mind too. It'd be ideal. But I couldn't get the keyboard anywhere in Puerto Rico, and Hewlett Packard doesn't ship them to the island either. So here I was thinking about getting an AlphaSmart, when today, while browsing Ebay, I found someone selling the folded keyboard - new in box - for the iPaq 2215 and just for $30. So you can imagine, I didn't have to think it twice! I pulled out my Visa, and 2 minutes later I'm the happy owner of the folded keyboard. I'm so excited! I can't wait for it to arrive. *grins*

Sherryl's workshop: Day 4

Last night I was suppossed to brainstorm for incidents that will serve to strength the characters' belief, but I sat down to read "Dark Hunger", an ebook by Puerto Rican romance writer Mayra Calvani instead. I totally forgot to log into RWAonline last night to check the rest of the info and the homework.

I just went by the RWAonline website to see the rest of the info and homework. Sherryl Wood wants a "list at least three "incidents" which bring the conflict between hero and heroine into focus" and a "list two pivotal moments that will bring your story to a slam-bang close." Yikes! I'll have to start brainstorming fast although the homework isn't due until tomorrow. The worst part is that I don't have any idea. Okay, I do have a couple of (very) vague ideas that might be considered incidents. But I don't think I've not anything in terms of pivotal moments. *sighs* This is the hardest part of writing for me since I'm a pantser. I guess I'll post my brainstormed ideas today and then narrowed it down from there.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Sherryl's workshop: Day 3: Stirring the pot

Sherryl's next assignment has to do with the incidents that will serve "to strengthen a character's already entrenched beliefs." It's not for tonight though since she still has to add some info on conflict, but I've got to brainstorm this one. There are a couple of sketchy ideas in my head but nothing solid yet.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Sherryl's workshop: Day 2 (Update)

Sherryl read my revised conflict and loved it. *does a happy dance* I can't believe I did good. Now, as for the secondary characters, she agreed that Daniela Guzmán would make a strong secondary character, but she wasn't clear about Margaret Lynch's role as a secondary character and how she added to the conflict. I admit she was right. I'd tossed this character just for the sake of having 3 secondary characters, but I wasn't sure if I wanted this character appearing in this story (except for perhaps a bit in the first chapter). But as I read the questions Sherryl posted on her possible influence in the conflict/plot, an idea popped into my mind. (Darn, this new Muse of mine is working well! *winks*) So I reworked Margaret's description, which included a part in which she'd been one of André's romantic flings, and posted it in the forum. Sherryl just gave me the thumbs-up on Margaret. *vbg* Now the plot is taking shape.

Muses to spare

To Lynn and Teresa,

Hey girls! This couple of (very enticing) hunks applied recently for the position of Muses. If you want them, you can have them since I already got my Muse for Valentine's Day. *winks*

Sherryl's workshop: Day 2

Sherryl loved my hero and heroine, and the conflict. *grins* Still, she asked me revised the conflict to show it more completely. So I reworked part of the heroine's description to show the conflict more, as Sherryl asked. Then I revised the conflict to tighten it up. I posted it all already. I hope she approaves of the changes I made. *crosses her fingers*

Her assignment #2 is to come up with three secondary characters, and explain in a sentence or two how each one of them helps up the conflict. Hmmm... Now I've got to think this one carefully. I've already got one secondary character, Daniella Guzmán. One down, two to go.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Sherryl's workshop: Day 1

Here I've been thinking about what to do for the first assignment. Last night I could barely sleep. I wanted to create new characters for this workshop instead of using the ones I had already created for The Male Muse and the Romance Writer. I was thinking of creating the two characters for the "game" Rae and I have. But nothing came to my mind. At this moment. I'm at work and there are too many things going on, so I don't have time to concentrate. So I opened some old files and came up with Sara's story, a minor character in Katherine's story. I barely had a bare-bone outline of the story. Now it's a good time to brush off the dust of this story and work on it. *grins*

Hero: André Shemar
Heroine: Sara Burns

Happy Valentine's Day

Hope you all romance writers and readers have a wonderful and very happy Valentine's Day!

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Chat with Catherine Spangler

I didn't think I'd show up for tonight's chat with futuristic romance writer, Catherine Spangler, since I'm not into futuristic romance. However, I ended up showing up and had a great time. Catherine was a very good sport 'coz she had to put with a bunch of wild and crazy like us. *grins*

As for the chat on futuristic romance, I didn't know this sub-genre was so small, or that it was so hard to get a sale. I noticed it has been reduced though. I guess since many of the big writers - like Dara Joy - aren't publishing within that sub-genre at all, the market has limited itself. Besides, the trend in romance novels seem to be moving toward Paranormal. I guess when it goes around comes around. Eventually, the futuristic romance trend will come back.

One of the things that really surprised me was the fact that Dorchester is considered a small publishing company. And here I thought it was one among the biggies, like Harlequin and Avon. After all, Dorchester publishes romance authors like Cassie Edwards and Katie MacAlister. It was recommended as a good place to start, but not to expand one's horizons as a writer.

Hmm... I just realized I forgot to email Rae with the title of my story and the hook. I hadn't even made up my mind about which song to choose, and coming up with the hook is giving me problem. But it's almost midnight now, too late for me to start working on it. I've got work tomorrow, so I've got to go to bed. That will have to wait until tomorrow. *sighs*

Setting up shop for Sherryl's workshop

I just logged into the RWAonline website, and noticed that the forum for Sherryl Wood's workshop is already opened. I'm so excited about it! I just finished opening my workspace. Then I went by Sherryl's workspace and saw she had already posted the first assignment. Yikes! That woman sure doesn't waste time. *lol* She wants us to write a paragraph describing (not physically) the heroine and another the hero. Then she wants a third paragraph summarizing the conflict. Now that's something to mull about tonight.

Friday, February 11, 2005

The end of the week

Well, another week is over - and not too soon. I felt like this one went slower. Anyway, to recap my week, the Interspecies Sex Workshop with Gena Showalter and PC Cast is over. It was a good workshop although I didn't get to participate as I wish I had. Then again they didn't post that many exercises, mostly all they did was post info. Some of the questions were quite thought-provoking. I copied and pasted their posts so I can sit calmly to read them.

I'm still behind my critiques. *sighs* Gosh, I hope I can do some critiquing tomorrow at work. I've got to answer some email too. I'm behind that too thanks to the virus that affected the server where I receive my email. I just hope I don't have to show up at my office in the afternoon just get this done.

Rae, one of my writing challenge partners, emailed me today. She has agreed to do the little exercise to wake up our muses. I really hope it works. Our first goal is to come up with a title and a hook by Sunday. The title has to come from a song from the 80's or 90's. So I surfed the web and found a couple of cool titles: Eric Clapton's "It's In The Way That You Use It" and Cher's "If I Could Turn Back Time." Now, if I could come up with a good hook...

I'm the new FF&P member

Yep! You read that title right. I just joined another group. *grins* I just received an email from the moderator of the Futuristic, Fantasy & Paranormal, a special interest group from RWA. They've got two forums, one to chat and one for brainstorming. I hope the latter helps me with some of the ideas I've got on two paranormal stories. This makes my third special interest group from RWA. I'm already a member of RWAonline and From the Heart. Eeek! Now I hope I can keep up with all three of them.

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Muses Needed

Not-so-young aspiring writer seeks active Muses. Must be creative. Willing to work at odd hours. No experience required. Apply within inside brain.

Monday, February 07, 2005

Inter-Species Sex

Yep. That's the title of the new workshop I'm taking this week at the Romance Diva. This workshop is hosted by PC Cast and Gena Showalter. Honestly, I've never considered writing a story in which there are any "species" as hero or heroine. I did start one with merpeople in it though, yet they can change into "human form" to be with their human lovers so I think there's no inter-specie sex there. I wonder if vampires having sex with humans is considered "inter-species" sex. Hmm... Anyway, I figured I could use something, anything, to get me out of this rut.

One problem less

Well, I just received the official email from Kristen about the RWAOL's February Workshop with Sherryl Woods. So obviously my registration got through after all. *sighs relieved* I hope I can get some new ideas in this workshop.

Sunday, February 06, 2005

Is this a sign?

There's going to be a workshop called "Recipe for Memorable Characters" given by Sheryl Woods at RWAonline starting on Valentine's Day. I've been trying to sign up for it for almost a week. First, I tried their website form. It didn't work. So I sent them an email from work. Still when I got home I tried their website again, and finally I was able to sign up online. However, I'd not heard about them so I figured the application didn't get through. Now Jo emails me telling that there was a snag when they uploaded the new website look. Okay, Universe, is this another sign or something?

Diva CP enquires

About a month ago, I posted on the Critique Partner forum at Romance Divas that I was looking for a critique partner. For days I went by the forum, hoping to see a response. And every day I was disappointed to see that many had read my post but weren't interested. I blamed it to the fact that I'm not a proficient writer. So eventually I stopped going by the forum. Today I was decided to go by it and I was surprised to find that one of the new divas responded to me post. Her name is Janai, an American living in England. Like me, she doesn't have too much time to write. So I guess she understands my time constraints. I left her a message with my email on the forum, so we can start getting to know each other better.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Quite a revelation

I was reading the posts on some of the lists I'm in and came across one in which the person talked about how she had quit writing for a while due to the holidays and her work. And I thought, "Yep, that's me. The holidays didn't help me get inspired to write. Then vacation was over, and now that I'm back to work and I'm still not writing." But it was the part in which the person mentioned how much she enjoyed not having to think about plots and characters. All I could do was blink. Yes, that's how I'm feeling right now. I'm happy. I'm enjoying the fact that I don't have to worry about plotting, creating characters, critiquing and editing.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005


Just for kicks, I've added a counter to my blog. I just want to see if people are coming to read it or not. I mean, if people really read blogs - besides bloggers, that is. Perhaps I should add one to my website but they will break the look/feel of it.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Boogieman dresses up as a contract

I was reading the blogs of some of the AQP's contest winners and how excited they were about winning a 2-year contract with AQP, when I heard a little voice inside my brain saying, "Aren't you glad you aren't one of them?" That sure stop me! Deep inside, in that very dark corner of my brain, I knew I didn't want to win the contest. Why? Simple. The contract. The thought that I might win, and therefore get a contract, hovered over me, even when I conciously didn't realize it, causing the biggest writer's block in me. The mere idea of a long-term contract, even if it's for 2 years, frightens me. What if I can't write anymore? What if the Muses leave me and I don't get any more ideas? For me contracts are so binding, that the thought of not being able to fullfil one is not acceptable.