Slice of [my] Life

a writer's piece of the pie

I’m a PRO!

No, not a PROfessional. I’m a PROlific blogger. See?! I even have the award to prove it! Ain’t she grand?

I’m a PRO!

Okay, so maybe she’s a bit old… maybe a wee bit dusty, but I didn’t forget about her. I promise, my dear blog award–I was just biding my time, waiting for the best possible moment to unveil you to the public… I swear… *cough*

I’d like to send a gigantic THANK YOU to Kristie Cook for passing this cutie on to me =D Thanks Kristie!

By the way, if you don’t already know Kristie, check her out– her new book, Promise, is available in stores now and is phenomenal! This book (the first in the Soul Savers series) has gotten rave reviews–and let me tell you, critics are tough. Seriously, the chick is enviable. I’d hate her, you know, if I didn’t already love her 😉

Now I’ll be passing this little diddy on to one of my favorite bloggers/people in the entire world. Who might that be? Well, none other than my CP/soul-mate, Ashley Tenille!If you don’t know Ashley–shame on you! She’s only the coolest Canuck ever…quite possibly the coolest person ever (though I like to think we tie for the latter).

So Ashley– do her proud! Dust off that lent and post her to your blog– then start writing!

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August 4, 2010 Posted by | Ashley Tenille, Award, blogs, Reading/Read | Leave a comment

Forget Me Not!

forgetmenot Forget me not! I’m still here. Kinda. It wasn’t planned, but I’ve been on a blogging/writing hiatus—thanks to massive amounts of homework and out-of-town company. It was a nice little mini-vacation, but now that it’s over…back to work I go! Here’s a peace offering, from me to you—Forget Me Nots. Aren’t they pretty?!

Because of my scheduling conflicts, I’ve sorta balked on the writerly stuff. No new chapters, no new crits, no nothin’. That’s right, just call me a slacker; that’s what I am. I’m a proud slacker, though (or at least I try to be).

Lucky for me, I did manage to get some reading in while on Slacker Island. Actually, it was more like listening, since I did most of it while I was working, driving, or coloring my hair. *Audiobooks for the win!* May I just say, for those of you who know of Rachel Vincent, her latest Shifters book (appropriately titled SHIFT) was amazing and kept me up until 6:30 in the morning. While I can’t stand her MC, the books are fantastic.

And after SHIFT, I went on to finish the Lone Star Sisters series from Susan Mallery—also phenomenal—which kept me up all of the next night. I started functioning off of 2 and 3 hours worth of sleep. Not good for an avid sleeper… You can see what else I’ve been reading at Goodreads or Shelfari.

Now that company is gone and SPRING BREAK is approaching, I’ll be getting some quality writing time in. Hopefully that means more blog time too. I’ve missed you guys! I haven’t even been on Twitter and I don’t even see how I’m still alive without Twitter and the #amwritingparty!!

Will be posting some awards soon (get ready, and watch your back!)

Oh, and one last thing before I’m off to mentally prepare for Criminal Minds tonight— I got my hair done for the summer! …yes, I have summer and winter colors. It didn’t come out how I planned (at all) but it works.

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Curled and straight. Whoopie! Now to lose that extra 50 pounds…

March 10, 2010 Posted by | About Me, Reading/Read | Leave a comment

Hunky Scots & Quirky Apes

I wish I could say that I’ve been around, lurking in the background of the World Wide Web. Or that maybe I’ve been sitting back, patiently waiting as I allowed the debut of the Love At First Sight Blogfest to peculate though blog readers everywhere. Hell, I don’t even have the excuse of a vacation to explain my 12 day, blogging dry spell. My excuse is far less exciting, not to mention, far less pleasant.

First, may I just say that a college faculty should not be made up of morons?

That’s right, folks! I’ve been yanked from my normal blogging routine, only to stand in line for hours before getting my turn to argue with the idiots on the other side of the counter at a college. And one time is understandable–things happen. But twice? Thrice?! No, no. Someone is fighting a losing battle in the war on common sense, and it’s not the ape in the picture above… Just sayin’.

But enough about that; I’d just as soon forget the whole mess–and I’ve (mostly) managed to do just that. The important part is that I have sorted the whole thing out *knock on wood* and am registered for classes this Spring. Finally .

My time in the long, winding lines wasn’t all bad though. I did manage to do quite a bit of reading. I finished Dragonfly in Amber (the 2nd book in Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series). It’s a book that I started months ago but never got around to finishing. Writing tends to get in the way of my reading, but the long lines gave me an excuse to indulge myself in someone else’s writing while leaving me completely guilt free. What more could a girl ask for? A hunky Scot, perhaps? Yes–and that’s exactly what I got with Gabaldon’s historical, time-traveling work of art. And her writing really is art. Truly, the word “book” doesn’t fully describe the magic she weaves. [Note: Simon, you don’t count this time, because you do not wear a kilt 😉 At least, not that I know of…]

But I find myself facing two problems. One, I’ve been talking with a Scottish accent for days day now. Not that I mind–I love accents–but I think it’s starting to grade on J’s nerves. He’ll have to get used to it though; I’ve started book 3, Voyager, and let’s just say, the accent is only getting stronger. And two, my internal dialogue, while not Scottish, is coming in loud and clear. And British. This is heavily due to the fact that I gave in and bought the audiobooks, but I’m sure it would have happened anyways. I’m very animated, so what? Does that make me weird or something? Nah. I just like stories.

What about you? Do you ever get way too involved in a book your reading? Or if you’re a writer, do you find yourself thinking like one of your character thinks, or talking like they talk? What little quirks do you notice when you dive into the magical world of fiction?

Don’t forget to sign up for the Valentine’s Day Love at First Sight Blogfest!

January 15, 2010 Posted by | Blogfest, Reading/Read, UGGGHHH! | Leave a comment

It’s research, I swear.

One of my very favorite things about being a writer is the simple fact that it gives me the excuse to research the most…unusual things. I mean, come on…if someone sees me reading a book on medieval torture devices, I have an out– “Oh, I’m just researching some of the horrendous methods used during the Spanish Inquisition for a book I’m writing. How utterly barbaric they were back in those days; I’m sure glad we’ve evolved into a more civilized species.”

Or maybe that one time, when my boyfriend got a little too nosy and took a little peek at my browser history? “Oh honey…don’t worry, I can explain my interest in demonic possessions, exorcisms, and creepy pagan rituals. I swear its just research for my next book.”

I thought it would be fun to do a post on some of the research topics I’ve used in the past few years. Some of them are somewhat normal, while others…well, they are subjects that only a writer might understand. Actually, maybe this should be a writer only post, because otherwise, someone might try to have me committed to a white-padded-wall institution…

So, like I said before, I’m going to list a few of my most recent, Google-powered searches.

  • YouTube video search of “big cats”. Yes, that’s right– Big Cats. My current work in progress has three paranormal night races, demons, vampires, and shapeshifters. I wanted to see video of a lion/leopard/cheetah (you name the kitty) running/pouncing/stalking so I could accurately describe it in my book when my shifters transform into–you got it–Big Cats. And thanks to the BBC and their excellent wildlife footage, I can.
  • Infomercials. Uh huh…infomercials. I was writing a scene and one of the characters started to make the point that someone’s idea was as stupid and pointless as __________—and I needed an infomercial to fill in the blank. So I did a quick search; this is the best one by far….
  • High-end, designer clothing and evening dresses.
  • Gunshot wounds–where to aim to maim, not kill. What can I say, there’s a war going on in my books–I want it to be realistic.
  • Military helicopters. I needed a helicopter in my book and I needed to know which one to use…
  • The weight of the KA-BAR survival knife and the different holsters one can use it with.
  • I received a package in the mail a few months back. Inside, were two books I purchased for research purposes. However, when my family saw what was inside the package…lets just say I had to remind them that I write murder scenes.

Of course, those books took their positions on my bookshelf next to Dr. DP Lyle’s other works, Murder and Mayhem and Forensics and Fiction

Of all the things I’ve looked into, one of the best research topics I read was on Multiple Personality Disorders. The book, Switching Time by Dr. Richard Baer, is the story of a woman, Karen, and her seventeen different personalities. I won’t go into the details, but I was truly amazed by this story and the depth of this illness. I was absolutely spellbound by Karen and her alters, all whom had their very own names, personalities, and purposes.

I’d actually been looking down the psychology aisle at Borders when I came across the book, took a peak inside…and couldn’t put it down. I couldn’t imagine anyone questioning my choice of reading material…until of course I brought it home and my family looked at me like I’d grown four extra heads. Why in the name of God would I want to read such a thing? The girl had obviously been abused and now suffered from a psychological illness; it was a tragedy, not entertainment, and certainly not research for a paranormal romance!

And the really sad part was, I could actually see their points. This was a tragedy, and I was a little too enthralled by the whole concept of it.  Of course my family (who happen to think my interest in all things “different” to be…well, different) got me thinking.What kind of a lech am I that I can sit down for four straight hours and read through page after page of trauma and illness and hopelessness? Obviously a very sick kind of lech…

…or a writer. Ah ha!

Hallelujah! Praise the Lord, I have an excuse for my twisted fixation with the weird, the macabre, and the completely random. As writers, we’re naturally nosy and intrigued by the strange and unusual. We get ideas from everywhere and from everything. If something strikes our fancy, we want to know more about it, to learn everything we can, and we want to file it away for future use. Well duh, right?

So–what have you researched lately?

**Want to buy the t-shirt at the top of this post? The Write Snark

December 23, 2009 Posted by | Reading/Read, Research, Writing | 3 Comments

Another little detour

Between my busy work schedule and my lovely beau, I’ve spent the last few days not writing. I did some re-plotting of the Immortals series I’m working on, as well as on the two other books I’ve been playing with in bits and pieces. To be honest, I didn’t plan to work on plotting my two other books just yet–I’m not quite ready to focus my attention on them because of how well my first book in the Immortals is going–but, seeing as how “book one” was pissed off and not speaking to me, I switched my attention to first Bitten, and then to a Young Adult book I’m toying with, which remains nameless…

As it turned out, switing my attention actually was a good thing. I suppose the best way to explain it is that it “opened me up” and made me more compliant in dealing with the issues I was having in my plot with “book one”. When I turned my attention back to the Immortals, poof–problems solved.

So, in a miraculous stroke of luck, fate, or divine intervention, I knocked out three birds with one stone. Wham, bam, thank you ma’am. Now,  since I just mentioned it, I should point out that no, my books are not actually named. I happen to be the worse writer ever at inventing book names. If I had my way, my book series would be titled A, B, C, and so on, while the books themselves would be numbered 1, 2, 3, etc…

I also spent the last two days (while not working or with my fiance) reading a magnificant new book (that’s actually been out for a few years). The Rest Falls Away by Colleen Gleason was bloody brilliant–no pun intented. Now, for anyone who has actually taken a look at my library and seen the number of books–no, I have not read all of them, and no, there is not enough time to read them all. However, Josh (because you know I’m talking to you), If I did not purchase books at random, I would never have come across The Gardella Vampire Chronicles, and therefore, would not be so completely amazed by how expertly put together Gleason’s “world” is. So, ha! There is a very good reason to let me indulge in my Borders addiction–I truely enjoy it.

Now that’s it Monday, it’s time to get back to work with my writing…
Laters

September 21, 2009 Posted by | "Bitten" Series, Fiance o' Mine, Nightling Series, Plotting, Reading/Read, Young Adult Series | Leave a comment