Archive for November, 2006

30
Nov
06

Jordan Summers: Saber-Tooth

Kegar comes to Earth, and finds that his mate is a woman who thinks he’s a science experiment in the making.I honestly didn’t think it’d work.

But man, it does. Saber-tooth is a hot little novella, and if it was available in print, I’d tell you it make a great stocking stuffer for your best galpal. ;) Or since it’s the season to spread joy, why not drop it in your best friend’s inbox?

This is for Angie‘s TBR Challenge.

This rates 4 out of 5.

PS This was a contest win.

28
Nov
06

Flow-Charts Are WRONG!

I mean, really.

You have several arrows from each bubble thingie to different bubble thingies and you can have an arrow from the 1st bubble thingie directly to bubble thingie 4, and you can have an arrow that goes from the 1st bubble thingie, to the 2nd, to the 3rd and finally to the fourth.

It’s just wrong people. WRONG!

The person who came up with flow-charts was crazy and if she/he’s still alive, belongs in the mental hospital.

’nuff said.

PS I’ll post a review later. Otherwise I’ll forget and Angie will put me on the Wall of Shame.

27
Nov
06

Special post for Angie

Dear Angie,

I’m sorry I’ve taken so long to reply to this post.

I don’t have a fancy sidebar that allows me to post pics of my TBR pile, which changes too often for me to bother anyway.

I currently have an ARC of the lovely Richelle Mead’s Succubus Blues sitting right next to me. I would take a picture, except that cameras don’t get along with me and I don’t know where mine has decided to hide.

But hey, I have it waaaaaay early! ;)

Hugs, May

PS Hop over to Amazon or your book purveyor of choice to pre-order.

26
Nov
06

Alexis Morgan: Dark Protector

Dark Protector is the first book in Alexis Morgan’s Paladins of Darkness series.

Devlin Bane is a Paladin, a warrior who can be revived after dying again and again.

Laurel Young is his Handler, the doctor who revives him each time.

The execution was pretty good–the author’s experience is apparent, and she’s also known as Pat Pritchard. Interesting concept, one I wish she had delved more deeply into in this book.

A pity it doesn’t do enough to distinguish itself from the other paranormal romances in the market.
This rates 3 out of 5.

PS I swear having the word “Dark” in the title didn’t cause me to cut the book’s grade. I didn’t even realise it had a “Dark” in the title a la Feehan until I finished writing the review.

23
Nov
06

Thursday Thirteen: I wish I was Taller

1. I’m not even five feet tall, you see, so people sometimes think I’m like TWELVE! *wails*

2. It annoys me that when I’m at the bookshop, I sometimes have to ask the booksellers to get books for me because I’m short.

3. Same thing as at the library, except I go look for the ladder and climb instead, but the top shelf is still almost out of reach. One day I’ll topple off and have to sue the library.

4. I have to tailor every bottom I buy. Pants, skirts, jeans etc. They are always way too long. If I buy three-quarter pants or capris, they turn into ankle-length pants.

5. It has to be really short, or full-length. What? Skirts and pants. And really short skirts are bad because I’m a tomboy and will forget to cross my legs and embarass myself.

6. When I’m out shopping in a crowd, I can never spot the people I’m with. Unfortunately, because I’m short, they can’t spot me either.

7. Too long sleeves. Because my legs are short, my arms are too.

8. Too long shirts. I once bought a man’s dress shirt that I could have worn as a dress. Could have being the operative words. I didn’t actually try that.

9. People call me petite. Look, I’m short. Call me short. I don’t mind. I prefer it to petite. Petite rhymes with cute and I refuse to allow cute to be associated with my person.

10. Bitches who go “My, you’re tiny! Where does all that food go?” in a sneering tone of voice. I’ve a kick-ass metabolism. Insinuate that I’m a bulimic again and I will slap you silly and stuff your head into a toilet bowl.

11. My nieces/nephews are all going to be taller than me. That’s a whole generation who are going to think it funny to grab whatever it is I’m looking for and hold it above my head like I used to do them. Must work on my Meanness Quotient, or MQ.

12. All tables and chairs are at the wrong height for me. Makes life difficult in the kitchen especially. And I spent many miserable years sitting in front row in school.

13. People who think I’ve image issues about being short. No I don’t. I have practical issues, see 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 11 and 12.

Michelle’s Winter/Fall TT

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

21
Nov
06

Jeanie London: Retrieval

Retrieval is a quiet novel. You will get more from the book if you take your time with the book, I think.

Nina remains in the passage because she didn’t use her ability to tell whether a soul is going to heaven or hell in life. The two men who loved her and protected her in life remain with her. There’s a scene in which an unspoken romance rule (given that this is not an erotic romance) is broken, which does a wonderful job of showing Nina’s past.

Same goes for Roman.

I hope that this will be the first book in a series.

This rates 3.5 out of 5.

17
Nov
06

Lauren Dane Talks To Us: Locations as Characters

Okay so I’m always up to talk. I’m a talker, I love to visit with people and learn about them and hear what they’re interested in. So I was flattered and excited when May asked me to do this guest blogging gig.

At the same time I thought, “What the hell do I know about writing?” I mean, I do it and I’ve been fortunate enough to be able to sell what I write, but I’m not an expert by any stretch of the imagination.

So instead of writing about Deep POV or something technical, I thought I’d write about something I love – cities as characters in books and why I think the choice of your setting can add wonderful layers to any story.

In April of 2003 I was in New Orleans to see Pearl Jam. It was there that the idea for Triad came to me. New Orleans is a magical city. Music in the air, magic, great food, wonderful people – it’s festive and colorful and jam packed with history and really great story fodder.

In my Witches Knot series, New Orleans is more than just the setting, it’s another character. When Em is walking through Pirate’s Alley in the rain in the beginning of A Touch of Fae, I always see it so vividly in my head, the colorful doors against the dark gray of the cobblestones at her feet. Not everyone has been there of course, but at the same time, it adds something, a layer of authenticity, a point of reference, a place a reader who’s been there or has seen it can add to her understanding and it creates a connection point.

To use another book and a fictional town, Temptation in Jenny Crusie’s wonderful, Welcome to Temptation is a great example. Temptation is drawn so wonderfully, with such a quirky hand, it’s as important as Phin or Sophie in its own way. We’ve got this place that could be any small town in just about any part of the country. Crusie gives us an understanding, small town life, small town mores, small town politics and she wields it well. Temptation and her phallic water tower and her grand city hall tells the readers something about not just the geography but the people who live there.

There are places that convey this because they’re part of our cultural reference book. Washington DC, Seattle, Boston, New Orleans, Prague, Paris – all stand out for me and when I read books placed in these cities, I automatically have a place to rest my story as I read. The setting in and of itself, creates a reference without even having to write it.

So there you go. My totally non-scholarly guest blog about my little fetish for cities as characters. I’d love to hear your favorite locations in books.

Lauren Dane

Current Releases: Tri Mates

To be released on November 21st:
Chase Brothers book 2: Taking Chase
Witches Knot book 4: Thrice United

And….because Lauren’s so fab and generous, she’s doing a giveaway! Comment in this post, and win a download of any one of her books, including Taking Chase and Thrice United! The lucky winner will have a difficult choice to make indeed.

16
Nov
06

Full Disclosure?

Via Buzz, Balls & Hype, I found this at Metaxu Cafe (can also be read at Kim Bofo’s own blog), which lead to this post as well.

From those posts, you can continue on to others.

The gist of Kim Bofo’s post is that bloggers should disclose that the book they are reviewing is an ARC or free copy from publisher/author.

That’s ridiculous.

Like MJ Rose said in her post (link above), I just can’t see someone selling out for USD$23.95.

So that makes the disclosure unnecessary.

I do mention in my reviews that a book was free or is an ARC.

But this is my blog, a little part of the internet that belongs to me. I RULE here. It feels right to me, so I choose to do it.

I do not expect that other reviewers follow suit. It freaking amazes me that there is someone who does!

16
Nov
06

Thursday Thirteen: 2007 Books I want

1. Eileen Wilks‘ Blood Lines
If you are asking this question, I suggest you go buy Tempting Danger now and come back.

2. Richelle Mead‘s Succubus Blues
Succubi! She’s running an ARC contest, and I think it’s still open so go and enter and tell her I should win. :D

3. Lynn Viehl‘s Night Lost
Need I say more?

4. A Is For Amour edited by Alison Tyler
I used to say I don’t follow editors. I’ll read anything she edits/writes.

5. Colleen Gleason‘s The Rest Falls Away
Have you seen that trailer?

6. Jennifer Lynn Barnes‘s Tattoo
I read Jennifer’s first release, Golden, and I really liked it.

7. Vicki Pettersson‘s The Scent Of Shadows
Vicki emailed me the blurb, which I kinda think is up on Amazon already, and whoa….

8. Holly Black‘s Ironside
I loved Tithe and wasn’t very impressed Valiant, but I do adore her voice.

9. Rachel Vincent‘s Stray
Werecats! ‘Nuff said.

10. Melissa Marr‘s Wicked Lovely
I just have this feeling I’ll really like Wicked Lovely–LOOOVE the title! I had this feeling with Justine Musk too, and Holly Black just from reading their blogs, so fingers crossed! Plus it’s got fairies

11. Justine Musk‘s follow-up to BloodAngel
I totally dig her voice. BloodAngel belongs to my reread shelf and it’s soooo freaking hard to get there you know. ;)

12. Lilith Saintcrow‘s next Dante Valentine book
What, you don’t know I’m a huge Lili fan?

13. Racy Li‘s Ninja
What CP can wait for her pal’s book (FIRST too!) to be released? Plus, I’ve already read the beginning and love it.

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

1. Darla on what We Know

2. Alison Kent’s TBR pile and her 04/07 release is The Perfect Stranger

3. Scooper’s Secret Lines

4. Lara’s Knows These Things For Sure and I can’t believe I left Kiss Of Midnight off my list!

5. Angie on her comfort reads and so that she has more time to read them, people should stop sending her ARCs ;)

6. Jaci’s Thankful TT

7. MG Braden’s TT

8. Joely Sue’s TT

PS There is something seriously wrong, because all the authors on my list are female. What happened to gender equality?

PPS If you’re not on the list, please feel free to comment and let me know. I’ll include your release and release date in the link back to your TT. ;)

PPPS In honor of Jordan posting an excerpt, we have an honorary 14 with a too far away release date: Red.

15
Nov
06

7 Questions with Tamara Siler Jones

1. On a scale of one to ten, rank your current level of insanity–where ten is belongs-in-lunatic-asylum insane–and tell us why.

Lol! That’s actually a very loaded question. At this moment (about 4:30 in the afternoon of October 18) my level of insanity is maybe a 2. That is not historically typical, btw. It’s usually somewhere around 8 or 9, but I’ve been making a point to relax, to do things I want to do instead of only things I’m expected to do, and I’ve had plenty of sleep, also not typical for me. The past few months have introduced many vital changes in my life (including therapy, journaling, and just saying ‘no’). Things are really coming together and I’m much happier and less stressed overall.

2. I’m a cross-stitcher who knows the basics about quilting, but hasn’t actually started one. Any tips? And how did you get started into it?

When our daughter was born, we were very poor and I decided I’d sew some of her clothes to hopefully save some money. Ben Franklin’s Store had lots of cute kiddie fabric for about a dollar a yard, patterns weren’t much more, and I dove in, even though I hadn’t touched a sewing machine since Home Ec in 7th grade. I mean, really, how hard could it be? Ha! Was I in for a surprise! With some practice, and some failures, I got better and better at sewing jumpers and dresses and other simple things which, often, were cuter than store-bought clothes and certainly a LOT cheaper.

Then, one day while channel surfing (the kid was not-quite 2), I saw Strip Quilting with Kaye Wood on PBS. A whole new world opened up for me and I made my first quilt – which we still have even though it’s falling apart – with left over fabric from the kid’s clothes and some cheap muslin. I soon learned that while cheap fabric might work for sundresses, it does not work for quilts. The fabric ravels and falls apart with the narrow (1/4 inch) seams. But I kept sewing her clothes, and I kept watching Kaye Wood (soon adding in Sewing with Nancy, too) and I learned. I made so many quilts and dresses, I wore out two sewing machines in about 10 years.

I don’t sew clothes anymore, teenagers aren’t enthusiastic about homemade clothing, but I still sew a lot of quilts. I also buy much better fabric now, and I’ve become a bit of a collector. My favorite fabrics are imported batiks and I have about 150 different ones. When I did the Black Batik Quilt on my blog, almost all of the ‘colored’ fabrics came from my stash, as did most of the black batiks. A few I bought just for that quilt.

As for tips, I think learning to use a rotary cutter is a priceless skill, so is making accurate seams and pressing. I’m a big fan of pressing, it makes the edges sharp and helps properly match points. Start with a simple pattern – like a 9-Patch or Rail Fence – to get sewing and matching seams down before tackling anything more challenging, especially if you’ve never sewn before. Bias triangles are a lot harder than they look when you’re just starting out because they STRETCH and, for a new quilter, that just makes things a lot more complicated. Also invest in the best tools and fabrics you can afford. It really does make a difference in the quality of the finished product.

3. The Dubric novels are dark and intense. It’s not that they aren’t fun in a dark, twisted sort of way, but do you think you’ll ever write something fun and light, even breezy?

I honestly don’t know if I will or not. I used to say that I didn’t have any fluffy-bunny stories in me, only dark and twisted, violent tales, but, as my inner life changes… I’m just not so sure anymore. I do know that there are still a lot of things I want to say with Dubric and his world, and a lot of dank, dark places I want to explore. Maybe I’ll step my narrative into the light at some point, but I can’t say for sure one way or the other. Currently, my narrative muscle is still pretty dark.

4. Do you think that writing forensic fantasy, as you call it, gives you the best of both worlds in terms of worldbuilding? You get to make things up to fit what you want, and yet for the rest you get to use whatever research that fits.

Oh gosh, yes! I’ve been working on a novel in our real, modern world and it’s a lot trickier to write, having to make sure that every little thing is accurate and up to date. I’m a bit hesitant to write a modern forensic piece because the technology changes so fast, sometimes too fast, and the applications of new technology in a court of law are sometimes questionable. Just my luck I’d get some part of the chain of evidence wrong – like something that was not admissible in court when I wrote the book, now is when it hits the shelf – and that could date my work before it got out the door. I think that all novels that deal with any aspect of technology face that, it’s just part of working in such a fluid medium.

It’s also hard for me because I’m pretty anal retentive about ‘believability’ and the belief that A leads to B leads to C. Things Must Make Sense, even if they’re totally invented, and I’m not going to put something in a book that I know is untrue just to make the work easier for me or my characters. With Dubric’s books, the control of technology, law, cause and effect, everything, is up to me. It’s very freeing in a lot of ways, but it’s also a big responsibility to ensure that Logic Rules and I don’t say one thing in one book, then the exact opposite in another. It is incredibly fun, though, to find non-industrial solutions to problems that sometimes seem modern.

5. You’ve mentioned on your blog that you’ve done proposals for contemporary thrillers, if I’m not wrong. I, for one, can’t wait. Do you think that they’ll be similar to the Dubric novels in terms of feel? As in, dark and intense?

Some, yes, but not all. One I’m considering is comparatively cheerful yet twisted (at least how I see it) and another is straight SF Horror. I never really know how they’ll turn out until I actually write them, because so much changes during the act of creation. My initial idea usually is nowhere close to the reality of their finished product. Overall, though, I hope that all my novels are intense, even if they’re not dripping with darkness.

6. Lars. *drool* Lars. He will have a happy ending, won’t he? Say yes! I’ve never read a book where I wanted a certain character to have a happy ending so much.

Let me just smile. Next question?

;)

Now that you’re done screaming, I have to say that I don’t know. I have a multitude of ideas for Lars, some rather nice and homey, some absolutely not, and I’ll just have to see what happens when it happens. Lars’s life makes some definite changes in Valley, and some extreme ones in the Dubric book I’m writing now (as yet untitled). Where will he end up? I’m not sure, but I expect it’ll be a wild ride getting there. All of the major characters know there are no guarantees in anything – even their survival. It’s all up to fate and the story at hand, almost like real life.

7. On your blog you’ve talked about writing Valley of the Soul. Was it the hardest book for you to write so far?

Yes, very much so. Ghosts in the Snow was just a blast to write, giddy and fun. Threads of Malice was, in many ways, horrific because of the subject matter, but the work itself wasn’t too bad, even though I was often very uncertain about facing the story and worried about my abilities as a writer. Valley… Frankly, it was a personal slog through hell, something I never want to endure again. It fought me every word of the way, became a huge, shambling mess, and I was utterly miserable writing it. But I kept going and, thankfully, I have a brilliant and insightful editor. Now that it’s finished, it’s possibly my favorite of the three books. I think Threads is the best, if nothing else than for the fearless stand it made facing an incredibly terrifying subject, but I think that Valley has the most heart. And the most hope.

Thanks for your time, Tam!

Tamara Siler Jones has a blog. Her latest release, Valley Of The Soul, is out now.

15
Nov
06

Tamara Siler Jones: Valley of the Soul

More Lars…oh, Lars… Yes, I’m obsessed with Lars. And I think Jesscea is one very very lucky girl.

Some might think that tightly written isn’t the right word for a book that is over 400 pages long. But it is a perfect adjective for Valley of the Soul.

One of the things that has most impressed me so far is that Tambo manages to keeps the series fresh, while taking us a deeper into both the psyches of the main cast and the world she has created.

May there be many more Dubric books.

This rates 5 out of 5.

14
Nov
06

Go Take Your Potshots at Me

I’ve a post up at RTB today.

Try not to get me fired. Please. Despite my moaning about going through half a dozen drafts, which happens to be situation normal here at Chez Insanity (both the moaning and the half a dozen drafts), I do like blogging over there.

I was going to post something intelligent and erudite and blah de blah here today as well, but it doesn’t look likely. Sigh. My brain, it has runaway from me!

12
Nov
06

Douglas Clegg: The Priest Of Blood

Slow. Boring.

It’s a very epic type of book, and the voice matches the book.

Maybe it’s that I’m not in the mood for something like that.

Maybe I didn’t like the (unreliable) narrator. Nothing really happens to him until the later half of the book when he becomes whatever.

I’d actually have cut most of the first half of the book. I think it could have helped Clegg to write it, but I don’t think it’s necessary for the reader to read it. He could have shown soooo much of it without actually putting it in the book if you ask me.

I blame that on Mo, who told me that I should cut all of it from my first book.

This didn’t get a zero because I didn’t HATE the book and because I can appreciate the craft and skill.

This rates 4 out of 10.

10
Nov
06

Elizabeth Bear: Hammered

This is a very complex book. If you blink, you’ll have to double back and read it again.

Sometimes even if you didn’t blink, you’ll have to double back because Ms. Bear does like to make you work for it. Not a bad thing, but it’s not a book you want to read when you’re not entirely awake.

Some people will be bugged by the multiple POVs, including one first person POV. I think it works very well in this book.

The first person POV character is Jenny Casey, the protagonist. I don’t think the character’s voice Pops out of the page, and I’m not sure that I like her, but she’s a very interesting character.

I’ll be getting the next book, Scardown, for sure.

This rates 8 out of 10.

08
Nov
06

Yasmine Galenorn: Witchling

Great concept, interesting worldbuilding plus a voice I like.

Instant hit, don’t you think?

Nope.

Because the lead character, Camille, is a tourist. She takes us, the readers, everywhere, but what happened taking us INTO her head? And this book is written in first person, no less.
I know I expected great things of this book, and maybe the disappointment caused me to push the grade downwards.

Uh, also, for those of who care about these things, you might throw the book across the room on the basis that it’s not a romance despite what it says on the spine, hmm?

This rates 2.5 out of 5.

08
Nov
06

Lauren Dane: Tri Mates

This is the third story in Lauren‘s Cascadia Wolves series.

Normally, the “We are meant to be together as mates” plotline bugs me, but Lauren does manage to pull it all together because she develops the relationship beyond, “Ooh, we’re meant to be together! Let us fuck like bunnies!”

They do fuck like bunnies, though I daresay Trace, Gabe and Nick will take issue with the bunny part. :D
The trio have an interesting dynamic, one that I wish could have been explored more in depth. Put another way, I felt that the book was too short and that, if you’re the author, is always a good thing.

This rates 4 out of 5.

07
Nov
06

Natasha Mostert: Windwalker

I contemplated letting you go your happy way, buy the book and realise it doesn’t have a traditional HEA–I am not elaborating on this, but if you have to, go to the bookstore and read the last chapter first. Some will argue the point that it doesn’t have a HEA at all, but I think it has one.Mostert’s writing carries the book. In the hands of a lesser writer, Windwalker would be a flat, boring book with a unhappy ending.

It’s not. It is a beautifully sad love story.

This rates 4 out of 5.

05
Nov
06

Catherine Asaro: The Radiant Seas

I know, I know, I’m an Asaro fangirl. I can’t help it.

I loooooooved this book. As usual. It is written by Catherine Asaro after all.

We get to see Sauscony and Jaibriol I and everybody else.

Lots of people died. *sniffle* Including a character I was fond of.

But in some ways, that’s what I like about Asaro’s work. All her deaths are worth it. It’s never gratuitous.

This rates 10 out of 10.

03
Nov
06

Sarah Dessen: Dreamland

I looooooved this book.

Sarah is on her way to being one of my favorite YA authors of all time, together with the likes of Laurie Halse Anderson.

The title matches the feel of the book perfectly.

Dreamland is the story of a girl who walks further and further down the wrong path, and she doesn’t know how to stop or how to turn back.

It has more adult appeal than some of the other ‘darker’ YAs I’ve read, partly because, I think, that it can be an analogy to many issues.

In Dreamland, it’s abuse by a boyfriend. But the way it’s written, it could be interpreted to be many things, depression etc.

This rates 10 out of 10.

01
Nov
06

7 Questions with Patricia Sargeant

1. On a scale of one to ten, rank your current level of insanity–where ten is belongs-in-lunatic-asylum insane–and tell us why.

About two weeks ago, I would have answered 8, perhaps 9. I was ready to run screaming into the streets because of my schedule. Then my sister came for a weekend visit, and I put everything aside to spend time with her.

Her visit is exactly what I needed. It forced me to put a distance between myself and my projects, which allowed me to put my schedule into perspective. I realized the pressure I was putting on myself was largely self-imposed. I'm not saying that pressured feeling won't return. But the release valve – no matter how temporary – was very much needed. Now, I'm at a 4 or 5. Crazy, but much more manageable.

2. It's your first book! How do you feel about You Belong To Me going out into the world?

Oh my! I'm so excited to share this story. I love these characters, and I hope readers love them, too. For me, characters tell the stories, they carry the stories, and that's what I hope I've accomplished with You Belong To Me.

You Belong To Me is not the first manuscript I completed, but I feel a powerful connection to it because I think it reflects a lot of creative growth.

It floored me how well Kensington interpreted my story through the back cover copy and the front cover image. They really *got* what I was trying to express. I'm very happy with their interpretation.

3. You were born in the West Indies. Do you think you'll ever write a book set there?

May, you're one sharp lady.

I'm working on a proposal for a mystery series set on a fictitious West Indian island. It's a mystery with paranormal elements. Sort of like Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum series goes to "Fantasy Island" and meets "The X Files." The plots give readers the opportunity to explore West Indian cultural, legends and lore. I'm very excited about the proposal and hope it's successful.

4. Do you think African American romance, as published by Kimani Press or your Dafina, should be shelved separately within the romance aisle? Or do you think it should be shelved by subgenre, ie contemporary, paranormal, romantic suspense?

I very much prefer when bookstores shelve romances by authors' last name.

I walked into a bookstore one day and made a beeline for the near-to-bursting romance section. I was dismayed when I couldn't find any books by African American authors among the extensive collection/wide variety of romance novels. I wandered back to the front of the store and found a map of its layout. When I followed the directions to the African American section, I was dismayed to find an endcap with five titles. I asked one of the employees if those five titles were all the store offered. "Oh, no," he assured me, leading me to a couple of shelves on the far/opposite end from the already understated "African American" sign.

Riddle me this: If you encounter in a bookstore a romance section the size of a small country, would it actually occur to you there may be a handful of other romances tucked somewhere across the store? Why not offer your customers all of the romances in the same section?

5. You Belong To Me is a reunion story. Are those your favorite kinds of romances? Care to share your particular favorites? (Correct me if I'm wrong about the reunion story part, because I'm basing this on the blurb–I'll send you another question)

You're absolutely correct. You Belong To Me is a reunion story. My what if question for this story is, what if you found the right person at the wrong time; then you're given another opportunity, but circumstances once again try to tear you apart? How far would you go/what would you do to ensure your happily ever after this time?

I do enjoy reunion stories when the authors explain why the characters split up the first time around and how they resolve those differences when they're given a second chance. A couple of reunion-type stories I've enjoyed are Beverly Jenkins's "Through The Storm" and her "Night Song" and Suzanne Brockman's "Out of Control." Those are just a couple. My list is very, very long. <g> But I also enjoy other plots such as women in jeopardy and men in jeopardy.

6. What gave you the idea of doing Road To Publication mailing list?

When I announced my first sale, several buddies asked for updates on my progress. They told me they found the information I shared with them very helpful, and asked if I could add other pals to the distribution. It started with four friends, and has grown to 31 very supportive pals.

I still have a great deal to learn about this business, but what little I know I'm happy to share. I strongly believe the philosophy, "Each one, teach one" benefits the whole. I would not have come as far as I have if others hadn't shared their lessons learned with me. I'm happy to pay forward their kindness and generosity.

Another thing, the only way to affect positive change in an industry is to speak with a collective voice. We can't do that if we don't share experiences with each other. I'm not saying we should reveal financial information. But if there's a clause in a publishing contract you believe is unfair to authors, for example, let's talk about it. Let others know how you addressed it, whether you were successful in getting it changed, why or why not. Remember Harlequin's pseudonym clause? It took years, but as a collective voice, authors were able to get it changed. "United we stand; divided we fall." That sort of thing.

7. Since You Belong To Me is being released during the month of NaNoWriMo, have you ever tried it? Completed it? Or do you think it's just for nutty writers?

LOL! I do not believe NaNoWriMo is for nutty writers. No way.

NaNoWriMo has several benefits. It helps develop writing discipline. Turn off the TV. Disconnect the Internet. Put down that bestseller. Well, at least for a few hours. <g> It also encourages writers to turn off the inner editor and focus on telling the story.

I love that you asked me about NaNoWriMo. The heroine in You Belong To Me is an author. I include a couple of scenes in which she's working on her next book. I enjoyed writing those scenes. I was in my heroine's head as she was getting into her heroine's head. That was fun.

I haven't yet participated in NaNoWriMo, but I intend to. I did have a blast participating in a Book In A Month and Book In A Week with several other authors. It was great cheering each other on to meet our goals. I would encourage other writers to try it at least once.

Thanks again for this opportunity, May! I've enjoyed answering your great questions.

Thanks for your time, Patricia!

Patricia's website is here. You Belong To Me is out this month from Dafina and should be available in a bookstore near you.





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