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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Monday, May 29, 2006

Review of the Memorial Weekend

Memorial Weekend. It was anything but memorable. Here I had a three-day weekend to do some serious writing and finish my samba story, and instead I wasted it away. Saturday and Sunday I spent it going to the movies and shopping. At night I tried to sit and write but after a couple of minutes I'd turn off the computer and grab a book instead. Still I figured I could get some writing crammed today. Yeah, riiiight. I binged on sweets during the whole weekend, and being a hypoglycemic, I woke up t his morning totally sick. At one point I thought I'd be rushed to the hospital. Luckily I didn't. But I was too sick to do any writing that made sense, especially with the bad migraine I woke up with from my nap. Oh, I battled out with the effects of the medicines and forced myself to sit before the computer and do some writing. That anything I wrote made any sense... well that's another story. Anyway, I sent it to Laura for a quick lookie.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Ice Cream Indulgences by Sign

Ice Cream Indulgences by Sign
Astrological clues to your cravings
By Simone Butler
Provided by Tarot.com

Do you melt for Butter Pecan? You're probably an orderly, detail-oriented Virgo or Capricorn. But if Double Chocolate Chunk makes your heart beat faster, you could be a creative, life-of-the-party Leo or Sagittarius. Whether you secretly scarf it down at midnight or have one tasteful scoop for dessert, the ice cream you adore is a tip-off to your sign. What treats tempt you to indulge?

Aries (March 21 to April 19)
Forget about non-fat frozen yogurt -- a luscious scoop of Chocolate Mousse Royale from Baskin-Robbins is more your style. A child at heart, you enjoy the sheer fun of chocolate-dipped cones and banana splits. You helped make Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough the second-most popular Ben & Jerry's flavor (after Cherry Garcia). In your youth, your quick metabolism and love of exercise easily burns off those calories. But take care as you get older -- your impulsive nature could get you into trouble.

Taurus (April 20 to May 20)
You have a sweet tooth, Taurus, and you're also quite social. Because you like the finer things in life, you can be found at a local bistro sharing a dish of rich, creamy gelato with a friend. Or, you may opt for the sinful Founder's Favorite at Cold Stone Creamery … sweet cream ice cream, pecans, brownies, fudge and caramel. A Taurus friend once said that eating a bowl of chocolate ice cream topped with raspberries, almonds and Amaretto is "comparable to having good sex … you can enjoy it slowly, to the very last drop."

Gemini (May 21 to June 20)
You can never settle on just one thing, Gemini, so you'll agonize forever at Baskin-Robbins before making a decision. You may end up with a triple-decker cone you'll never finish, but at least it satisfies your need for variety. Chocolate Chip is a good choice for you, as it matches your charming, competent nature -- layer it with Pistachio and Strawberry Cheesecake for a delectable combination. You might go for Ben & Jerry's Half-Baked Ice Cream or Chunky Monkey for their clever names alone.

Cancer (June 21 to July 22)
Dairy products are your favorite indulgence, Cancer, and you like your ice cream rich and gooey. Because you're security-oriented, vanilla is your favorite flavor -- it brings back pleasant memories of mother's milk. Häagen-Dazs Dulce de Leche or Vanilla Swiss Almond are right up your alley. You might try making your own ice cream, as you're handy in the kitchen. But it's also wise to keep some lo-cal frozen yogurt on hand to avoid those compulsive trips to Dairy Queen for Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Blizzards.

Leo (July 23 to Aug. 22)
You enjoy the high life, Leo. Häagen-Dazs may have invented their exotic Baileys Irish Cream and Crème Brulee just for you. Chocolate, however, is your true passion, as it complements your zesty, dramatic nature. Ben & Jerry's New York Super Fudge Chunk or a vanilla Dove bar dipped in the finest dark chocolate rings your chimes. You easily get bored with routine; try something new like Cold Stone Creamery's For Coffee Lovers Only … coffee ice cream, Heath Bar bits, roasted almonds and caramel. Yum!

Virgo (Aug. 23 to Sept. 22)
When you do indulge, Virgo, you tend to make healthy choices like raspberry frozen yogurt or green tea soy ice cream. But you walk the straight and narrow in so many areas of your life that sometimes you just have to let loose. On those rare occasions, nothing but a hot fudge sundae will suffice. A study made by Dreyer's ice cream discovered that orderly, perfectionistic types like yourself buddy-up best to Butter Pecan. Perhaps it reminds you of the carefree days of youth?

Libra (Sept. 23 to Oct. 22)
You're so good about watching your weight, Libra, that we're unlikely to find you chowing down on chocolate fudge brownie ice cream. More likely, you'll savor a small dish of lemon sorbet or nonfat vanilla frozen yogurt … perhaps adorned with a few sprinkles of toasted almonds or chocolate chips. If a social situation demands it, you might indulge in a single cone of English toffee or dish of Häagen-Dazs Black Raspberry Chip. But you'll insist your partner take the lion's share.

Scorpio (Oct. 23 to Nov. 21)
You're an all-or-nothing person, Scorpio. Either you eschew sweet treats altogether or you'll pig out on a banana split with extra hot fudge, whipped cream and maraschino cherries. So what if they're preserved in formaldehyde -- you only live once! Rich, sexy flavors like Kahlua and Cream get your engine firing. Fantasizing about a pint of Mocha Almond Fudge may seem like a better option than calling that love interest who's nothing but trouble -- but indulging in too much of either could prove dangerous.

Sagittarius (Nov. 22 to Dec. 21)
You're always in a time crunch, Sagittarius. Dove and Häagen-Dazs bars are perfect for you … that way you can get your chocolate fix on the run. You're always the life of the party, so you burn chocolate like fuel. Not that you really need the caffeine fix with your high energy. In fact, a midnight binge on your favorite Ben & Jerry's New York Super Fudge Chunk or coffee ice cream with chocolate syrup can keep you up all night. Try getting a thrill from vanilla instead -- you'll end up sleeping like a baby.

Capricorn (Dec. 22 to Jan. 19)
Your iron-clad discipline doesn't let you surrender to ice cream too often, Capricorn. When you do, it's likely to be a small dish of a time-tested favorite like Strawberries and Cream or English Toffee. Anything weird like Ginger Soy Dream or Ben & Jerry's Phish Food is apt to leave you cold. On the other hand, your quest for the best and your natural sense of elegance may incline you toward Häagen Dazs' Crème Brulee or Almond Hazelnut Swirl … especially if the whole family is indulging.

Aquarius (Jan. 20 to Feb. 18)
You'll try anything once, Aquarius, from fried green tea ice cream at the local sushi bar to the corner ice cream parlor's pineapple-walnut-butterscotch sundae. Offbeat combos strike your fancy. You helped push Cherry Garcia -- cherry ice cream, chocolate flakes and cherries -- to the top of the charts at Ben & Jerry's. As a child, you were thrilled by the "forbidden fruit" of Daquiri Ice sherbet at Baskin-Robbins. You won't turn down something exotic like Häagen-Dazs' Bailey's Irish Cream or White Chocolate Raspberry Truffle, either.

Pisces (Feb. 19 to March 20)
You're a sensualist at heart, Pisces. You swoon for the luxurious mix of chocolate ice cream swirled with peanut butter, or a vanilla sundae with caramel topping, whipped cream and toasted nuts. Jamocha Almond Fudge is one of your favorites … the combination of creamy and nutty textures turns you on. You find Mint Chocolate Chip refreshing, and you adore the sensation of those thin chocolate strips melting on your tongue. Starbucks' Java Chip keeps you going when you're burning the candle at both ends.

About the Author
Simone Butler is an intuitive astrologer with more than 20 years of experience in helping people engage with the mystery of their lives. She has taught many astrology classes and workshops. Her daily forecasts are featured in the Starscroll, and her articles have appeared in The Mountain Astrologer magazine. She has worked with 12 Signs, Inc. since 1992. Simone lives in a rural hideaway in Escondido, California with her cat, Queen Bess.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Falling in love with DaVinci all over again

I went to visit my goddaughter today to take her birthday present. Her b-day was yesterday but she spent it with her friends. So in the spur of the moment we decided to go and see The DaVinci Code. I've read the critiques, and I don't care what they say. I loved the movie. Sure the movie version has a few things different from the book, which I read btw. But I don't care. It was good. I wasn't sure Tom Hanks could pull of the character of Prof. Langston, but he did a very good job. I was impressed.

Friday, May 26, 2006

One more lesson

Yesterday I forgot to add to the list of things I've learned about my writing process that I can't write short stories. Remember the samba story I've working on for Phaze's contest? I started writing it with the idea of making just 5K long. Guess what? It's already almost 8K. And I'm not finished yet! Agh!

Thursday, May 25, 2006

What have you learned about your writing process?

Erotic romance Jordan Summers blogged about this today and asked this very question. So I thought I'd do a little soul searching here about my writing (something I've been question a lot lately), and here's what I came up with.

1. I've learned that I'm a pantser and write in the story in non-sequence and figure out what to put where when editing.

2. I've learned that I'm better writing action than romance. It's hard for me to get into the deep POV.

3. I've learned I'm a (pathetically) slow writer. It takes me weeks, and sometimes months, to write a simple 20K story.

4. I've learned that I strive on competition to keep writing. I need to be around those who can write better than me. So I know there's always someone out there who can kick my ass.

5. I've learned that it's okay to go through periods when I don't write.

6. I've learned that I can't force myself to write when I'm in one of those "off seasons." It just makes matters worst.

How about you? What have you learned?

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Are you an author follower?

Recently author Viviene King blogged about writers shifting gear and moving on to other genres and asked how we readers felt about it. That got me thinking about my reading habit and how it has changed over the past decade.

In the beginnig I was what I call an author-follower. I had a series of favorite writers, and I'd devour their books no matter what genre. Of course, they all wrote romance. *lol* However, I'd read Johanna Lindsey's futuristic romances as well as her historicals with equal devotion. I didn't care if they shifted genres as long as it was this or that author.

Today I find myself looking at my TBR pile, and the only thing that all the books have in common is the genre. I like reading paranormal romances. And even then I'm very selective. I pick a book and read the first 3 chapters. If it fails to catch my attention, then I put it back in the shelf and pick another.

How about you? Are you an author-follower or a genre-follower?

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Overhauling the story?

This afternoon I didn't get much writing done. To be honest, I've been reconsidering the story. If I keep it the way it's going, it'll end up longer than 5K. I can't have that at this point since I won't be able to have it critiqued and edited by June 4 when the Phaze's Samba contest ends. So I've been considering chopping down a few scenes. Perhaps cut out the heroine's girlfriend altogether. Although the setting will remain the same, I might have to create a new whole GMC for the heroine. This will also bring a new set of heroes. I might be able to keep the sex scenes though. Just change the names. But it'd be one major overhaul. *sighs* I just wonder if I can have this done on time...

Monday, May 22, 2006

Weekend review and BIAW

You'd think that being a weekend and with only 500 words more to go I'd use this time to finish my samba story for the Phaze - Samba contest. Riiight. The only time I touched the samba story was Sunday night when I went over the edits following Laura Bacchi's critique of the only sex scene I sent from the two I'd promised to have ready. *sighs*

So what did I do this weekend? My car was giving me trouble since last Saturday. Something was wrong with the power steering. It was spilling its oil. And every time I turned the steering wheel around the car made this weird noise. So I didn't want to drive it around, but it couldn't be helped. Saturday I had some errands to do. It was unavoidable. Worst part was it rained and I got drenched. Just great. My goddaughter's birthday is this Friday, so on Sunday I went to the mall looking for her present. And since I was already there, I dropped by Borders just to check the books. I didn't buy any though. This week's discount coupon wasn't all that great.

Yeah, I know I'm lagging on my samba story, and tomorrow my BIAW ends, so I'm hoping to make some progress today and tomorrow. I just want to make edits between Wednesday and Thursday before sending the story to my CPs and see what happens.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Jordan Summer's BiaW: Day 4

Last night I decided to follow the suggestions and keep the story on the heroine's POV. No big loss. I've only written two scenes only from the heroes' POV, so I put them on a separate file just in case I need them during the editing.

Anyway, today's word count was 1,500 words. And basically all I did was flesh out 3 out of 4 sex scenes, and the separate intros between the heroine and the two heroines. OMG, I'm 4,500 words into the story, and I still have to flesh out the first 2 chapters. Let alone write the intro of one the two sex chapters. Gosh, I've not even written the ending! I just realized that I've got only 500 words to go before hitting the 5K mark and there's so much left to be written. *hits panic button* Please, someone tell me I've not been so stupid to dig myself into one of those long stories. Why can't I keep the stories short? *bangs her head against the desk*

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Jordan Summer's BiaW: Day 3

So far I've written everything from the heroine's POV. I don't know if that's a good thing or not. I've been struggling with both heroes POVs. I guess at one point I'll have to make them meet so they both find out they've been sleeping with the same woman and agree to have sex with her together (can you say threesome? *evil grin*) Since I want this story to be 5K (or barely over it), I wonder if it'll matter that most of the story is from her POV instead of their POV.

Word count today: 1K
Total word count: 3K

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Jordan Summer's BiaW: Day 2

For what started as a bad writing day, it turned out pretty good. This afternoon I opened the file to continue writing my story. They were a few snags in the plot, but instead of trying to smooth them out and getting stuck in the process, I'd planned to keep writing and fill out any plot holes during editing. Well, as I began to write, the doubt monster showed its head. It started giving me a whole different direction for the story. That's not bad, you say. Okay, I agree. But the problem was that in order to make the new things worked, I needed to re-write everything and get a new set of hero/heroine. No good. So I started writing the new story. 300 words into the story I knew it was going to be a hot one. But I began to wonder if I had the time and energy to invest in it. And if I did, where that left the other story. Time for an executive decision: I decided to stick to the original story. And yada... yada... yada... I added 1,300 words to it. *g*

Now to recap. I've got 2K done from the story. That leaves me with 3K to write in the next 4 days. I wish I could write as fast as Jordan. Then I'd have this story done in one night and tackled the other story. *lol* But words don't come up easy to me, so with my pace, I think I can manage the 3K in 4 days. Can I do it? Yes, I can!

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Jumping into the Summers' challenge

Yesterday Jordan Summers put out the idea of a BIAW (book in a week) challenge for those of us who aren't going to the RT convention at Daytona Beach. I've never been fond of BIAW challenges since I find that the pressure tends to give me writer's block, so I was weary about signing up for this one. But I realized that I needed a kick in the butt if I wanted to stay focus on my writing. Lately, I've been all over the place. Not good. Not good at all. I don't do too well multi-tasking. Or in this case, multi-writing. *sighs*

So last night I sat down with the files to all my 6 WIPs opened. Although 3 of them needed the most attention, especially the wereanimal story, I soon realized my ...inspiration wasn't there. So disappointed, I closed the files and got into the internet. (Yeah, wasting time on the net is a great way to make the worries go away. Riiight.) I logged into Romance Divas's website, and while there I remembered talking to Eden and a few others last Saturday night about entering Phaze: Samba's contest. Of course, I'd not been serious back then. But as I checked out the forums, a hazy idea started taking root. Could I write something short for the contest?

After I logged out of Romance Divas, I checked out a few websites, and ideas started popping into my head. Here I was asking the Muses for one - mind you - ONE idea. But no... The little overachievers sent me three ideas, each with pretty catchy titles. I wrote the titles and the basic premise of each, and put them away.

This morning I took them out and began to thinking about them. I've got two great stories, but they might end up being 20K (at least) each. No good. My goal is to have the story written in 6 days. No more. I needed a simple plot. One I could write fast and quickly send it to my CPs. Then I looked at the third idea. It was a bit hazy at first, but once I began writing it I realized it was perfect. Think How Stella Got Her Groove Back with a threesome twist. 40-ish woman with two hot (and young) Brazilian brothers. Niiiice. *evil grin* Can it be done in 5 - 6K? Yep. Not much of a plot, and tonz of hot sex. Can I write it? Yes, I can! *repeats like a mantra*

So BIAW, here I come.

Update: 700 words

Monday, May 15, 2006

Pizza Toppings by Sign

Pizza Toppings by Sign
By Natori Moore
Provided by Tarot.com

Tantalizing crust, delectably spicy sauce, outrageously delicious toppings … who doesn't love pizza? Yet all pizzas are not created equal as far as zodiac signs are concerned. Different pizza toppings will appeal to different signs. Should Virgo eat anchovies? Can Cancer find happiness with mushrooms and olives? Read on to create the sign appropriate pizza of your dreams!

Aries (March 20 to April 19)
Never one to waste time on meals, Aries likes delivery pizza and likes it hot and fast. Pile on the pepperoni, fire-roasted peppers or spicy sausage for the bold Ram. Garlic and onions are also Aries' favorites. Aries will always offer to pick up a pizza, as long as it's ready quickly and they get to eat a good portion of it! Try ham and onion or barbecued chicken pizza for combinations to satisfy Aries' love of adventure.

Taurus (April 20 to May 20)
Just about any pizza with a thick and chewy crust will satisfy the food-loving Bull. Yet for particular pleasure, add extra cheese and at least one hearty meat item. Try a creamy Alfredo sauce instead of the usual tomato-based marinara, along with broccoli and other vegetables for a yummy twist on the original. Most often, however, Taurus will love the tried-and-true, so you can't go wrong with the classic single-topping pizza with cheese.

Gemini (May 21 to June 20)
A little bit of everything pleases Gemini, so don't be surprised if everything shows up on the Twin's pizza. Green peppers, olives, onions, mushrooms -- a Gemini pizza is like a garage sale in the vegetable garden. Yet not too chewy or chunky, please … Gemini fancies thin crust pizza, and likes toppings chopped in small pieces. A Gemini would also love the variety of a sampler plate of different pizzas.

Cancer (June 21 to July 21)
Cancer likes to stick with what's familiar, so whatever the Crab ordered last time will do just fine! Cancer favorites include both white and Portabella mushrooms, as well as eggplant, spinach and bacon crumbles. A home-baked pizza will satisfy Cancer more than the latest urban chef's creation. Find out what kind of pizza your Cancer enjoyed growing up. Chances are it hasn't changed much, though concessions to healthier eating, such as low-fat cheese, might have taken place.

Leo (July 22 to Aug. 22)
Like the carnivorous Lion, Leo craves a meat topping pizza with substantial portions of beef, ham, sausage or bacon. If manners would permit, Leo would scarf down a meaty pizza in one sitting with bare paws! But the Lion also loves regal settings, so gourmet pizzas eaten with knife and fork will do well when the Lion must be more civilized. Pizza with caviar and sour cream as toppings may please Leo for special occasions.

Virgo (Aug. 23 to Sept. 22)
Health-conscious Virgo pays close attention to food's digestibility and nutritional value, and may thus prefer a pizza with soy cheese, whole wheat crust and predominantly vegetable toppings. The fastidious Virgin can be a picky eater, so make sure to ask what kind of pizza he or she wants before ordering. Toppings cut in small pieces are best. Avoid too many exotic toppings at once, like artichokes or anchovies -- Virgo may tighten their lips.

Libra (Sept. 23 to Oct. 22)
Libra enjoys balance and beauty in everything -- and that includes pizza. Toppings chopped attractively and divided evenly between halves of a pizza will appeal to Libra's love of symmetry. Libra likes gourmet pizzas, such as sun-dried tomato and asparagus, prepared for two. Venus-ruled Libra may also enjoy toppings with a touch of sweetness, such as pineapple with ham or pepperoni.

Scorpio (Oct. 23 to Nov. 21)
A true Sicilian pizza hides the toppings on the inside, perfect for secretive Scorpio. Stuffed or pocket pizza of any kind can work -- the Scorpion doesn't want others to know what they're eating anyway. Meat, garlic, mushrooms, olives and seafood are favorites of the Scorpion. Try ordering octopus and pesto pizza for a truly gourmet Scorpio treat.

Sagittarius (Nov. 22 to Dec. 20)
Sagittarians have the largest appetite of the zodiac and like pizza piled with toppings -- the more the better. Large, chunky topping pieces and well-done meats will please the Archer, though their eyes may be bigger than their stomachs! Try New Orleans andouille sausage, hot pepper sauce or red pepper flakes to add the spice this fire sign loves. Pair the Sagittarian's pizza with plenty of good company, laughter and beer.

Capricorn (Dec. 21 to Jan. 19)
Chalk it up to their thrifty manner … some Capricorns enjoy no-frills pizza with just cheese. Yet most Caps will enjoy pizza with a selection of classic toppings, such as sausage, black olives and sliced tomatoes, and will find a way to make even the lowliest pizza impress. Gourmet pizzas with goat cheese, spinach and fresh herbs may also appeal. Long-established pizzerias delight this tradition-loving sign.

Aquarius (Jan. 20 to Feb. 17)
As pizza is the perfect group food, Aquarians may have logged many late nights at the office or college dorm ordering pizza for friends. Though Aquarians will eat just about anything, quirky pizzas like those with the rip-and-dip crust, served with a selection of dipping sauces, may be right up the Water-bearer's alley. Toppings should be spread evenly throughout the pizza -- nobody should get a big hunk of ham or sausage while another eater goes topping-less. All's fair in love and pizza.

Pisces (Feb. 18 to March 19)
We have to say it … fish, the more the better. Exotic seafood toppings for pizza such as lobster or smoked salmon, served with champagne, may appeal to this romantic sign. Shrimp or crab pizza with cocktail sauce in place of marinara may tantalize the Fish as well. Even anchovies are not out of the question. Yet pay attention to food allergies -- like Virgo, Pisces can have a sensitive digestive system. Eat pizza at a waterfront table for ambiance Pisces will love.

About the Author
Natori Moore is a counseling astrologer certified at NCGR Level IV. She has counseled clients from a variety of backgrounds and professions for over 15 years. Natori is a member and past vice president of the San Diego Astrological Society and member and former Treasurer of NCGR's San Diego chapter. Her articles have appeared in The Mountain Astrologer, Dell Horoscope, and Today's Astrologer magazines. Natori lives in Encinitas, California. Her favorite pizza toppings are pepperoni and pineapple.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

What a day...

Yesterday afternoon I did exactly as I'd planned. I didn't go to too many stores since the traffic was terrible, but I managed to get mom a present. I got her a perfum. I was hoping to get her also a new cordless phone, but K-Mart was empty in that area. Anyway, the afternoon wasn't a total loss.

Today I'd hoped to go to Wal-Mart and other places in the nearby towns and see if I could get her the cordless phone. But first I had to go to the bank and to pay cable TV. On my way to my cousin's house to leave her something my mom sent her, the car started doing this weird noise when I turned the steering wheel. I stopped, and the car was leeking power-steering oil. Great. Just great. I had no choice but to head back home early. I didn't get the chance to buy mom a card. *sighs*

BTW, the mechanic is my neighbor too. He checked out the car, and he thinks that it might be a loose hose. Ugh! He promised to take the car on Monday.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Shopping for mother's

Yesterday, after I came from lunch, I managed to add around 400 words among the runes story and the Magick ones. Not much, but at least I don't feel too guilty for spending another day without writing. However, I'd promised Noelle to finish critiquing her first story for Freya's Bower and emailed it last night, but I ended up laying in bed browsing some catalogs and picking up some pretty funky stuff (in the 50's and 60's style) for my new house. I know, I'm a bad CP.

Today I'm taking it off from writing to go shopping for Mother's Day. Since I worked Monday and Tuesday from 9:00 am till 8:00 pm, I'm taking this afternoon free. So here's the plan: Hit as many stores as I can between 12:30 pm and 4:00 pm. Honestly, I don't have the faintest idea what to buy my mother. I asked her if she wanted something in specific, but she said no. Great. Just great. I figured perfume would do. But she has so many. Although she likes them. Nothing for the house though. She's got too much stuff. Besides she recently ordered some new things. Ugh! Hmm... Maybe a new cordless phone. The one she's using has barely 200mhz so she can't walk around the house talking in it.

How's your shopping for Mother's Day coming along? Are you done or not? What are you giving your mom?

Thursday, May 11, 2006

A blah! moment

Yesterday I was full of energy. Writing. Researching. Critiquing. Today? I feel... what's the technical word?... ah yes, blah. I feel... I don't know. I don't feel like doing anything. I opened the file of the rune story and tried to write since I'm in my office alone (peace and quiet with 7 hours to kill), but all I did was stared at the monitor. So opened the Magick stories to see if something happened. Eventually I closed all files. Then I opened the file with my CP's story. I'd already critiqued her second story twice, but I still haven't finished critiquing the first story. I did some grammar corrections but I just couldn't push myself into critiquing it. So I closed the file, opened Firefox, and hoped to do some additional research. I've got Wikipedia opened, but I just sit and stare at it. I know we all have these blah! days. What do you do when you have one of those blah days?

Monday, May 08, 2006

We love freebies!

Well, last time I asked writers what they use to promote themselves and their books. Now, as readers, we just love to get freebies, which obviously come in the form of promo stuff, whenever we go to conventions. Now, from the list below, tell me which are your favorite freebies! *g*

Business Cards
Letter openers
Mini Calendars
Mouse pads
Pocket calendars
Plastic Cups
Temporary tattoos
Water bottles

Friday, May 05, 2006

Let's talk about promos!

I don't know about you, but thinking about promo gives me a headache. Let's face it, as writers we have think about promoting ourselves and our books, right? Okay, so I've been visiting a few places that cater to writers, checking out their products, and I've been wondering which of these do you as a romance and/or erotic romance writer consider "a most have" for promo.

Business Cards
Food Storage Containers
Jar openers
Kitchen utensils
Letter openers
Mini Calendars
Mouse pads
Pocket calendars
Plastic Cups
Temporary tattoos
Water bottles

Which ones do you use and why? Also, what do you put in them (cover of your books, or your name, or your website address, etc.)? This inquiring mind would like to know... *g*

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Doing some reading...

Tuesday night I finished reading Working for the Devil by Lilith Saintcrow. (Spoiler now ->) It's a great read. I almost cried at the end when Lucifer took the child from Dante and left Japhrimel, the demon that had turned Fallen because he fell in love with Dante, on the floor to die and Dante took his ashes, put them in urn, and took them with her. It didn't have a HEA, happily-ever-after (I'd hoped Dante would date Japhrimel since she was falling for him), but dang nabbit, I loved the story. Couldn't put it down. It was a tragic love story like Romeo & Juliet.

Last night I started reading Immortal Highlander by Karen Marie Moning. I'm a big fan of hers. I've read some of her previous book of the Highlander series. Gosh, they make me sweat! I mean, that woman can write some mean sensual novels. When I grow up, I want to be like her. *lol* No, seriously, I bow to her talents to keep the sensual level in her books high. *kneels and chants "I'm not worthy.* And Adam Black, the darkest - and most sensual - faery, isn't a disappointment. If it weren't for the pain my left hip last night, I'd have had some serious wet dreams with him.

Speaking of Karen Marie Moning's Highlander series, I just went by Barnes and Nobles.com and found out her latest, Spell of the Highlander, is going to be release on paperback by the end of this month. Oooooh... I can't wait!!! *bounces like a tigger*

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

What the stars have for me this month

For the past two months the Astrology for Writers, Editors and Filmmakers report was so darn accurate (especially last month!), that I decided to check out what the stars and planets have for me this month.
Cancer: Heed the advice of experts. You have burning ambition but may act rashly in its execution. Take your time, slow down, plan, then attack with organized vigor. Rash behavior can cost you $$$$.
Okay, so money problems this month, instead of writing problems. Well, that's comforting. *g*

Monday, May 01, 2006

Happy May Day!

by Raven Grimassi

Few celebrations of May would be complete without the presence of May wine. May wine is made from the earliest harvest of grapes. It is very popular among modern celebrants of Beltane and is also used as an offering of "first fruits" to the Goddess and God. It is easily purchased at most stores that carry even a fair selection of wine. However, there is a quick and easy way to create a suitable May wine if none can be found to purchase.

A Quick May Wine

Obtain a bottle of white table wine (not a Chardonnay) and pour the contents into a larger glass container that has a lid. Next take a half-dozen to a dozen bruised fresh strawberries and slice them. Then add a few sweet woodruff leaves and the berries to the wine and chill for several hours to allow the flavors to develop.

May Serpent Cake

Ingredients (makes 2 cakes):
  • 3/4 cup of sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon of ground cloves
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
  • grated zest of one orange
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons honey, boiling
  • 1/2 cup strong brewed espresso coffee
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup amaretto or rum
  • 1/3 cup jam; wild cherry or raspberry
  • coffee beans and candied orange peel for garnish
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

Mix the sugar, spices, orange zest, baking soda, and salt into the flour. Cut in the butter with a pastry blender until it is the size of small pebbles. Pour in the boiling honey, coffee, and liqueur and mix until smooth. Let cool and then turn out onto a floured surface.

Divide the dough in half. Roll the first half into an 18-inch long cylinder. Make a deep trough down the center and carefully place it, seam side down, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Be sure that the smooth side is up. Bend the dough carefully into a circle and fashion the snake's head at one end, making a triangle shape. Taper the other end to make the tail. Firmly set two coffee beans for the snake's eyes. Bake the cakes at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes.