Visit My Website

Visit My Website

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Query Letter (Nightmare)

I just want to go over query letter criteria.

I like to take a quick refresher - crash course - through sample letters. Remembering that no one is the same and taking the bits of advice that work for me. Then research agents. Making certain that I am sending my letter to the right person at the right agency. Taking in the tone of the website, agents bios and what books have they published. I really check out covers, titles, plot and then I go to Amazon. Because remember you are hiring them. And I know writing a query letter can feel like begging but at the end of the day I want to respect the people I work with, want to trust them.

E-mail queries are so much easier than snail mail but with that there is more opportunity for error. Double check your work before hitting send.

I'm practicing my hook for Moon Over Monsters. Want to hear?
The visions were coming nightly. Christina Casey never felt as if she belonged either because of her off the charts IQ or because as a 15 year-old she was still not allowed into a PG-13 movie.

Obviously not done. Rough. But it's a start!

Good luck,

Monday, October 24, 2011

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

I want to send out prayers and wishes of well being to those fighting and surviving breast cancer. And to all the brave family members who are there to care and support their loved ones. 

First let me say I didn't win the lottery. But I haven't given up the idea that this mind thing can work. I guess I just have to figure out what is going to happen and then think of that. Can't Lose! I must be doing something wrong - true I really didn't buy a ticket. I thought about it and I told people I was going to win and when a commercial for the AZ Lottery came on the radio it renewed my vigor to win. But it is out of my ordinary and I kept forgetting - 

It's been one month since I started book 3 and I'm having trouble. I'm not stuck in a writers block but I feel like I'm living in slow motion. I've redone the first chapter already ... not a good sign and I don't know what the problem is. My brain is distracted with a bunch of life clutter and I can't seem to find the right rhythm. I've been writing from home and I know that's not as productive but ... but nothing I've got to get a move on. 
I saw a website that advertised you could start and finish your book in 8 days! I don't know about that - I hate scams and I hate people who take cuts. The other day I was in line at a department store and this lady stood behind me, smiled and so I know she saw me ... but then she proceeded to catch the sales clerk on the side - Well, I yelled STOP THIEF!! - sort of - I did approach the two and of course said something. 
It was either say something or stew about it - I only like stew on winter evenings. She hemmed and hawed and said she didn't see me ... blah, blah ... A thief and a liar. Just wait your damn turn like everybody else! 

And with that I say Stand Up To What You Believe In -- No Matter How Ridiculous!

Stay alert,

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Reading Is Good For You

Reading makes you a better writer - it is my personal belief and I challenge anyone who wants to argue! I really don't because this isn't one of my Strong Feelings About Nothing. It is simply an opinion. I love to read. I love books with heart and books that are frightening and refuse to read ones that try to 'educate' me or have scenes of harming children.

From reading I learn what I like and I take that with me while I write. Because I can't please everyone my goal is to write what I would love to read. I can't go wrong if I follow that simple philosophy. But I do have to say - Sunday I went to family party and my 82 year old uncle is reading Second Chance. His daughters bought him a Kindle and he started the book over the weekend and is almost finished. It was awesome talking to him, he's excited about the characters, dislikes Finn and was laughing about something Melanie had done. How nice is that?

I know the country is faced with debt, unemployment and facing long months of hateful political ads - so we all need a break. Writing and reading can be that escape.

Also - I've been having these weird episodes where I talk about something from ... well, example - I was saying (Saturday) about when I was a kid and Scott Baio was in teen magazines and how I hadn't seen him in years. True? Well the next day on regular TV there was a movie called 'Cursed' and who was in that movie? YES! Freakin' Scott Baio!! What a bizarre'O world! So, this the thing - I'm going to try it all day long. Talking about cool stuff and see what materializes!

Here's to a winning lottery ticket (do I have to buy one for this to work?)

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Launch Party

We're having a little late Launch Party for Second Chance!

Saturday October 15th from 5pm-8pm
Here in Tucson - 4401 Paseo del Barranco

There will be food, wine, books and friends and family.

With that done - I do have to say that the third book is just as challenging as the other two. I've been doing this for weeks and I have to scrap a big chunk. It wasn't smooth going – I was hitting obstacles at every turn – a good sign that I went the wrong direction, duh! I guess I should've realized it sooner.

Over the weekend I spent time working out problems and it turns out I picked the wrong place to start. Even as planned as I thought I was - it isn't until the fingers hit the keys that the truth is shown. At least I can use most of what's done ... somewhere else, later in the book. Still it is a setback. Feels like a huge bummer, though, if I can find a groove I'll get back on track.

But I have to express how strangely happy I am to be back with Melanie. I think it's love. Infatuation or True love? At this moment I can't tell the difference. I close my eyes and I'm there. I've been listening to my playlist ( a brief moment to recognize the loss of Steve Jobs who absolutely changed my life. Years ago I got an iPod for my birthday and at the time I had no idea how much I needed one – so my thanks and prayers are with him. ) Back to my point ... I'm listening to a song by Ryanhood - Born To Run To You - and there is this moment where Pachelbel - don't know which one - is blended into the song and when I hear it, it takes my breath away. That's how I feel being back with Melanie. Corny or Goofy - I don't care.

What I do say is that writing is a leaning experience and though I am not necessarily making the same mistakes - I'm finding new ones. There will always be something to learn.


Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Editing Nightmares

I got back the first edited section of Moon Over Monsters. YIKES!
When I say I have a very rocky relationship with commas it is an understatement! I am being nice. I used to understand. I graduated from high school and college and am reasonably rational so why ... why is it so difficult? People say ... just put a comma where you take a breath. HA! First, when I speak I don't breathe and second ... it's not that easy.

I cannot appreciate Jill enough!

Years ago when Jill edited Living Lies the first time she gave me a list of rules - and let me just say here, I tried! I bought books with worksheets and I really attempted to learn. But this is the problem - it's all too abstract. I'm a numbers person, not to say I love math but at least it's consistent. 2+2 and all that.

I guess my point is if you're like me, don't let grammar is hold you back ... or if you're exactly opposite (and I can see this more) and you get too tied up in being completely correct you'll have a hard time finishing a book.

It is all about teamwork! We each have our strengths and we all need help. What I love about Jill is that she's honest. She isn't out there to spare my feelings or give me false compliments. I trust her. Any grammatical change she suggests - I make without question. And I'm not sucking up ... she'll never read this - if she did it would be smoother and sound better!

I got lucky. She read Living Lies and I could tell by her comments that she 'got' it - she 'got' me and my style and the characters. How do you find that? Try out different editors and don't settle on just anyone with a red pen.

Best of luck and I hope you all find your own Jill.


Tuesday, October 4, 2011


I love to watch people - sometimes I find myself captivated and staring. It can be embarrassing but the drooling aspect of my daze has gotten better. Though I have to say I am absolutely sick of "reality" tv. It all seems so fake and when the ratings dip the insanity picks up. I understand why we have to have it - over a hundred channels of cable television - still 24 hours in a day - and that means a lot of crap to watch. Quality programming is too expensive so we get stuck with shows featuring people who should never have the attention of the public.

Why am I so against shows I don't watch? I don't know. It's part of a personality flaw. I get really hot and heated over things that just don't matter. I call it ... Strong Feelings About Nothing! And sometimes I find myself passionate and ready to battle over a blip.

How about you - have you got Strong Feelings About Nothing?
I have at least a dozen.

Take care,