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Thursday, December 27, 2012

The Christmas Letter

I love reading Christmas Epistles. One of my favorite things of the holidays is opening a Christmas card and finding a folded wreath-designed paper with pictures and accomplishments. I admit that I stop whatever I'm doing to cozy up on the couch and enjoy a read. I even do this when I'm at someone elses home and they have them out – I don't care if I know the people or not.

I'm not sure what the captivation is but it's there and it's strong. This year was a skimpy year for Christmas letters so I savored the few I could get my hands on - I might have to drag out the box I keep in my attic to get my fix by reading previous years letters ... hmm, did I just go too far?

Here's To A Wonderful New Year -- I've got big plans for 2013! (So suck-it Mayans)

Love Those Who Are The Warmest - it's cold outside,
Kate Mathis

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Think Twice Before You Call A Stranger An...

Last night I went to an event to award a local businessman for his contributions to the community. That's the boring part but in the mix I spotted a man. He was in a light brown leather jacket, had rectangular silver framed glasses and ... he reminded me of Adam (for those of you who have read my books you know that Adam is an assassin). I turned to my husband and he said, "that guy looks like an assassin!" At that point I was hooked - I had to find out who he was. There are many problems with this ... the first being his name tag was tiny and second he kept turning each time I tried to run into him.
What was I going to do? Resolved, I decided I would simply introduce myself and tell him he reminded me of a character in my books. To which my husband said, "That sounds like a pick-up line. Hey you look like a guy in my book."(You have to do the cheesy, cheap porn star sound effects.)
Whatever. At the end of the event I was going to forget the whole thing ... but then I'd be a chicken and I hate missing opportunities.
So, I walked up to him and said "Hi, I'm Kate Mathis. I write and you remind me of one of my characters." Before I'd even finished my sentence I knew I was in trouble - the way his face changed – It WAS a pick-up line! I babbled on a few more seconds and he asked, (seriously) "Pray tell who is this person?"
I laughed, nervously - pushed his shoulder (which I immediately realized was another inappropriate gesture) and told him - an assassin.
I was in deep doo-doo! I gave a hasty goodbye and jetted like a rocket out of the auditorium. I figured Brent would find me, or he wouldn't, but I was not going back into that room.
I woke up a few times during the night to have a laugh. At least I proved that I am not a chicken!

Poor guy. I did get his name and after a bit of contortion he'll appear in a book - somewhere.

Anyway, I have learned a lesson and have passed my education on to you. Can't promise I'll remember that lesson next time I run into a dumb idea but...

Love All,

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

No Vacancy

Every year my mom says that she's going to make Christmas shopping easier for herself - she's going to give money and each year she spends hours, walks miles and stresses over everyone's gift. I'm on my fourth Melanie Ward novel and after each one I think "okay, now I've got this!" But here we are three months into CHASE and I'm stressing. It isn't writers block or finger cramps - but it's the hours and miles of plot that I go through to get the story down, to make it make sense. I have a jumbled personality and unfortunately it comes out on the page and that's why I have to edit and reedit.

Yesterday I started reading Living Lies – You wouldn't think this was a difficult task but my heart races, my fingers shake and I get nervous reading my own work. It's been years since I've opened up the book - I changed, rewrote and tore those first chapters nearly to death (After each rejection notice). Bad memories of trying to please everyone. Reading Living Lies again (with fresh eyes) I see my issues, which I will kindly address as my 'style'. And though I'm tempted to go back and update (fix) some of my 'style' dilemmas, I question if that's a good idea. Maybe, when I'm finished with CHASE ... we'll see.

The goal is to get better with each book. To write clearer, to tell an interesting story with real people and entertain for the 300+ pages. I take it seriously and hope readers think about Melanie, Adam, Trish after The End of each book – and if the next one is available have to pick it up and read more. I just wish I could do all this faster because the stories are piling up inside my head. The other day I tried to learn something and discovered I have no more room - I need the equivalent to an external hard drive for my brain.

Therefore the 'No Vacancy' sign will sway behind my eyeballs until I can come up with a solution. Anyone got one?

Love All,