Thursday, June 22, 2017

My Dusty Bookshelves #MFRW Authors #25

What are my favorite books to read?
Since I'm involved in VBS (Vacation Bible School-does that shock you?  LMAO!), this post will have to be short, since I stupidly volunteered to create the 1st newsletter!  I've been photographer, Snack Lady, and Keeper of Wayward whistles/name tags/Golden Ticket7s.   And in some instances, that pest who's always got her camera trained to capture every spontaneous moment....

So, in no particular order, the books which, no matter how often I read them, never get old.

1)  James Michenor's Hawaii
2)  Little Women
3)  Dana Fuller Ross's Wagons West series (though Colorado and California have similar plots)
4)  Key Trilogy by Nora Roberts
5)  Born Trilogy by NR
6)  Access Denied by Jacqueline Roth
7)  Brotherly Bonds by Brynn Paulin
8)  Woman of Substance series
9)  Winds of War/War and Remembrance by Herman Wouk
10) The Dutchess by Jude Deveraux
11) Separate Beds by Lavyrle Spencer
12) Goblet of Fire (Harry Potter #4)

What are yours?  What about others?  Go here

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Pasta....Steak....Chicken....How Can I Choose? #MFRW Authors #24

If I Could Eat ONE Last Meal?

Pasta, how I love thee.....let me count the ways.....

*needle scratch*

Filet Mignon, how I love thee.....

*needle scratch*

Grilled chicken, how I-

Okay, okay, we get the point!  Just pick one already!

But it's sooooo hard!

Yes, I know.  But the topic is-

Screw the topic!  I want Filet Mignon with a side of Grilled Chicken in Pasta with Pesto sauce.  And Broccoli with Hollandaise sauce.  And cheesecake for dessert.  Or chocolate cake.  No, make that blackberry pie.

*writing on pad*  So you want for dessert a blackberry pie with a slice of cheesecake and chocolate cake?

Yes.  Or yellow cake with chocolate icing.  It's my last meal, so I'm going out with a full stomach.

That's putting it mildly.

So what about you?  What would YOUR last meal look like?

To see others, go here.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Reality vs Ideal #MFRW Authors #23

Ten years ago this fall, when my kids were all in school, I was pounding out close to 1000 words per day.

Three years ago this month, I had turned over baby-sitting duties to my oldest granddaughter, so I could write Best of Both Worlds and turn it into my editor by July 1st.  Yes, I managed it.

During Word Wars on Twitter, where several friends and I devote 45 minute word sprints to encourage each other to get our books written, I was managing anywhere from 300-700 word counts....IF the words were flowing, I wasn't hearing "Grandma/Mo-om!", or distracted by conversations on Facebook.

Two years ago, I was trying to homeschool my youngest child, rid my house of a bed bug and lice infestation (thanks to the granddaughter's biological father), and write three books.  Only two were written; my child did manage to finish the 4th and 5th grades, and while we got rid of the lice, we still find a bed bug or two.  Bottom line is, they're under control.

So yes, my IDEAL word count would be that 1500-2000 per day.

What's my REALITY, though?
-We took possession of two abandoned houses and are in the middle of sorting, selling, donating, etc, the contents of both houses.

-My older grandkids are here for the summer

-We moved to our new house in December and I'm still cleaning out a storage unit.

-My youngest granddaughter is now five, and wants to spend more time outside in our larger yard.

-The only writing I seem to accomplish these days are two weekly blog posts, my morning FB updates, and the 300 words I can crank out at my weekly writer's meeting.

But hey, I've been here before, back in 2011.  Two short years later, I could barely write fast enough as the characters dictated their woes.

So do they really matter?  Only if you're on deadline.  I found out in 2007 that I have MAJOR perfectionistic tendencies.  If I've told someone of a goal, I'll sacrifice everything to attain it.  (I've eased up, somewhat....that's why I still have a book that's now 2 years overdue!)

It all depends on what goals you've set for yourself and how hard you're willing to work toward those goals.

Or if you're like me these days and LIFE has smacked you upside the head.

To see what other authors have to say on this subject, go here .

****If the topic was how many words are in a book, then my short stories run 4500-6000; my longest book is 54K; my 'comfort zone' is 30-40K.  Sorry if I've misunderstood the topic.*******

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Changes In Reading Habits #MFRW Authors #22

Ten years ago, if someone would have asked me what my biggest pet peeve in a book was, I'd have said, "Dry writing; reading older books with lots of description; not enough dialogue."

Now, I notice head-hopping.

Purple Prose.

Spelling/punctuation errors (specifically, those exclamation marks!!!).

Thanks to a Certain Trilogy, there are words I can't stand, as well as someone writing in 1st person-Present tense.

Granted, my old Steele, Roberts, Michaels (Judith, not my own, lol!), and other books I devoured from 1980-2006 are still in storage, so it will probably be several months until I get around to rereading them (I'm hoping to unearth them this fall!).  It will be interesting to see if I can keep my editing hat 'off' while I read them.

What do other authors take issue with in books? Go here to find out:)

So How Was The Race?
Spectacular!  It was routine until lap 54 when Scott Dixon and Jay Howard tangled, sending Dixon's car flying into the infield fence and nearly taking out a cameraman.  I'm amazed Dixon only ended up with an injury to an ankle!  They stopped the race to repair the fence (1st time I'd seen a red flag that wasn't weather-related), and the other amazing thing was this was the 1st year the line to the women's restroom was SHORTER than the men's.

And yes, I was thrilled when Takuma Sato won:)  The only thing I wasn't happy about was, Rookie of the Year went to the rookie who finished 29th, rather than the one who finished 3rd.  What a break in tradition!

Again, forgive me because I'm traveling home this weekend.  I should be able to check in on Saturday!  I didn't realize how tired I'd be last Monday; I read everyone's posts, but just didn't have the energy to sign in and comment.  Guess being stuck in traffic for 2 hours really takes a toll on a person.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

"Well, Hello There! Mind If I Drop In?" #MFRW Authors #21

'Childhood Memory' many, which one to choose?
-Going To Florida to see grandparents and Disney World (Click here)
-Bribing my dad to take me to see Star Wars 28 times the year it came out (I'll recap it next month on my other blog)
-Practicing my flirting skills on two older boys I met on the beach in Florida (July 1979)
-Spending two weeks in Colorado with friends, and ending up with my 1st official boyfriend (June 1978)
-Getting my 1st kiss (on the cheek!) at age 12 (August 1978)

But the one I'll share happened the summer I was fourteen.

We'd gone to Cyprus Gardens in Florida, and enjoyed seeing the water-skiing show.  However, during the finale of the show, something went horribly, horribly wrong.

After the Pyramid skiers completed their pyramid and skied past us, the guy in the hang glider suddenly hovered above us in the main viewing section.  Thinking it was part of the act, we waved and smiled at him....then suddenly he and the glider entered the stands and crashed a few seats above us.  We ducked, then my mom, a registered nurse, jumped up to help those who were injured.  No one was seriously hurt; simply scrapes and bruises, but it was definitely a memorable end to that show!

Two hours later, we returned to see how the show was supposed to end, and this time the boat with the hang glider went the OTHER way around the lake.  The only hiccup at that show was the 'barefoot water skier' didn't have his feet properly placed, and the gag was ruined.  We'd seen that bit already (the real one was skiing around the back side of the lake), but anyone new to the show didn't get a fair shot of the humor.

We also toured the Ringling Brothers Museum in Sarasota that year, though I longed to visit Circus World.

Want to read about other authors childhood memories?  Go here.

I'm heading up to Indianapolis for the 101st running of the Indy 500 on Sunday, plus setting up at the opening day of our local Farmer's Market on Saturday, before driving north.  I'll catch up on everyone's blogs on Monday:)  Have a safe and happy Memorial Day weekend!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Book vs Movie #MFRW Authors #20

What are my favorite movie versions of books?

-Gone With The Wind (I actually saw this before I read the book!)

-Harry Potter and the Sorceror's Stone (I was prepared to sleep through it, then LAUGHED during the entire movie!  THEN decided to read the books)

-The Devil Wears Prada (bought the book in an airport kiosk during a layover and was thrilled when it was made into a movie!)

-The Notebook (if I want a good cry, all I have to do is watch it.  Same with Toy Story 3.)

That's all I can come up with at the moment.

Which ones I can't stand?
-My Sister's Keeper (it changed the ending.  I was NOT happy!)

-Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire  (they couldn't keep in all of  the good parts of the book.  IMHO, of course....)

To see more lists, go here.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Writer's Guide To Creating A Hero-Revised #MFRW Authors #19

First of all, a confession:  I have shamelessly stolen my own post from 2009 on this topic, but have updated it slightly:)  

Physical Requirements:
-6 feet tall or more
-Expressive eyes; color not important
-Kissable lips
-Broad shoulders
-Light sprinkling of chest hair (or none)
-Lean muscles; no Mr. Universe wannabees
-8-10" cock (or at least have a 'massive' erection)

Character/Personality Traits:
-Must be flawed, either by past hurt or misunderstanding/lapse in judgement
-Kind, but staunch defender of values
-Willing to do Whatever It Takes to keep chosen female in his life
-Carry a never-ending supply of condoms
-Must be a committment-phobe before meeting said female (in some books, anyway!)
-Occupation: Doesn't matter.
-Oh yeah; must be SINGLE! Don't want any cheaters here...then he gets downgraded to the 'slimy ex-prick' status.

Sprinkle in hair color, eye color, a chance encounter with female, and heart-stopping, instant connection, along with mind-blowing sex and you've accomplished your goal: An erotic romance hero.

Some authors build their stories around heroes with money, be it any high-powered career. Others go for Public Service. Some go for the blue collar man. They all have the above characteristics and fall head over heels in love with the woman (or man!) of their choice. Yes, M/M is hot right now, as is M/M/F or M/F/M. 

Some heroes are wolf/bear/dragon shifters; others vampires.  Right now, I happen to be writing aliens, fairies, and ghosts.  But they all pretty much follow the same above formula. 

So what works for you?  Or would you add anything else to this list?  

To see other authors' ideas on The Ideal Hero, click here.

If you happen to be in the Evansville area next Monday, stop by B&N on Green River Rd and say hi to myself and the rest of the River City Writers, plus grab a copy of Crossroads and have it signed by all of us:)