Where’s My Tiara?

The world watched transfixed this morning as Prince William made the lovely Kate Middleton his bride and locked her into (hopefully) a lifetime of public scrutiny. Yeah, for a writer of erotic romance, not so big on the real-life romance. What can I say, I’m jaded. What stood out to me, besides how flipping glowing she was, and how flipping cute Harry is (I’ve always gone for the rascals), was this: I have no desire for the wedding. No desire for the big fancy dress. But, dammit, I want to wear a fricking tiara!!!

A Few of my Favorite Things….’

I love erotic romance. My current (for the last several years) kink is m/m romance. My tagline is “if one naked man is good, two must be better”, and I truly believe it!

I have to agree, though, that since m/m has started gaining in popularity, a lot of crappy m/m romance is getting pub’d. A. Lot. And, since I’m po (I’m too poor to afford the other “o” and the “r”), I’m pretty darned picky about finding new authors. So, here are my top ten favorite m/m writers:

ZA Maxfield – writing that’s deep, multi-layered and authentic – love her!

Madeline Urban and Abigail Roux – Cut & Run is good, Sticks & Stones is great and Fish & Chips is superb!

Amy Lane – her fantasy stories are good, but IMO, Lane truly shines writing contemporary – Keeping Promise Rock? Beautiful!

Heidi Cullinan – what more can I say than OMG!!! I’ve yet to read a Cullinan book I haven’t liked, and I’ll add dayam, she writes some hot shit!

Marie Sexton – you haven’t read her yet? WTF??? Get thee to Dreamspinner Press NOW!

Aleksandre Voinov – amazing wordsmith, and can make me love his characters even as they’re bitterly disappointing me and breaking each others hearts.

KA Mitchell – at her best, she’s brilliant; at her weakest, she’s still pretty damned good!

Jordan Castillo Price – love it all, but I may never end my love affair with Wild Bill and Michael.

James Buchanan – must write FASTER! I need a Nicky fix!

Anah Crow & Dianne Fox – love pretty much all their stuff – both separate and together. Slow Bloom’s my all time favorite, though (although I have to imagine Ricky as maybe 23-ish, cuz the age diff is more May/February than May/December – still it’s an amazingly beautiful, amazingly HOTT story!)

There are many more I could name – Ava, Stephani, Bonnie, Ethan’s 1&2… Sean M., TC B (not to be mistaken for TCBY, which is also sweet and addictive)… They all grace my auto-buy list. They give me something to smile about when I’m stressed, inspiration when the well is dry, and some freaking awesome hot flashes, too.

Huh. I’m noticing a theme. A lot of my Thursday Things lately are centering around books. Go figure!

But I WANNA Overshare!

There are things that don’t belong on the internet. There are times when venting my spleen in public is unprofessional and downright trashy. There are things that are nobody’s business except the parties involved, and things that piss me off that aren’t particularly my business either. Knowing all of this really sucks because, dammit, there are times when all I want in the world is to overshare!

The problem, of course, is that by being vocal, I paint a target on my own forehead. I open myself up for close scrutiny. If I “go on the attack” when I feel wronged, I’m inviting anyone I’ve ever irked to put me in their cross-hairs. There’s waaaaaay too much glass in my house for me to go around throwing stones.

So, I’ll sit here and stew in my own outrage, be all offended, and then man up (always interesting since I’m decisively female) and just fricking get over it.

Or at least pretend to get over it.


Mancandy, Part Deux

Okay, stole this from Marie Sexton and Heidi Cullinan’s Coffee and Porn blog cuz it’s soooooo freaking hot, and my other Mancandy was so PG rated.

Snow to Sunburn in Seven Days…

This time last week I was scraping snow off my car…I am now itchy, headachey and in PAIN!

So’s he –

Hopefully this guy learned from our mistakes!

It’s Easter!

A man is driving along a highway and sees a rabbit jump out across the middle of the road.
He swerves to avoid hitting it, but unfortunately the rabbit jumps right in front
of the car.

The driver, a sensitive man as well as an animal lover, pulls over and gets out to see
what has become of the rabbit. Much to his dismay, the rabbit is the Easter Bunny, and he is DEAD.

The driver feels so awful that he begins to cry. A beautiful blonde woman driving down the road sees a man crying on the side of the road and pulls over.

She steps out of the car and asks the man what’s wrong.

“I feel terrible,” ! he explains, “I accidentally hit the Easter Bunny with my car and KILLED HIM.”

The blonde says,”Don’t worry.”

She runs to her car and pulls out a spray can. She walks over to the limp, dead Easter Bunny, bends down, and sprays the contents on him.

The Easter Bunny jumps up, waves a paw at the them and hops off down the road.

Ten feet away he stops, turns around and waves again, he hops down the road another 10 feet, turns and waves, hops another ten feet, turns and waves, and repeats this again and again and again and again, until he hops out of sight.

The man is astonished. He runs over to the woman and demands, “What is in that can? What did you spray on the Easter Bunny ?”

The woman turns the can around so that the man can read the label.

It says..

(Are you ready for this?)

(Are you sure?)

(You know you’re gonna be sorry)

(Last chance)
(You can still change your mind

(OK, here it is)

It says,

“Hair Spray
Restores life to dead hair,
and adds a permanent wave.”

Happy Easter!!!

(Can’t decide if this is hot or disturbing…)

Liberty and justice for ALL?

I am not political. Not. Political. And I resent when society causes me to have to make a stand. I’d much rather hide in my books and my writing and let other, more eloquent and fired up people “carry the banner”. But, occasionally society is just too screwed up, and I’m forced to speak my mind in spite of myself. Such was the case a few weeks ago when I “ranted” about the Republican Party and its seeming desire to union bust at the expense of reasonable working conditions, and such is the case today as I’m shown a glaring example of discrimination due to sexual orientation.

Josh and Henry are one example of a prevalent problem, one that shames us as a society. Whether you are “anti-gay” or “pro-gay” – that doesn’t really matter. What matters is that the law should protect everyone – black, white, purple, gay, straight – it doesn’t matter who or what you are. We separated church and state for a reason, and by continuously reinforcing religion-based prejudices, we’re betraying our Nations proclaimed moral code.

I’m not political, and I’m a Christian, and I believe discrimination is wrong. The law should apply to everyone, personal beliefs aside. When it doesn’t, we are all diminished.

Check this out:

Because they are gay, Josh can’t sponsor Henry’s visa to stay in the US even though they are legally married in the state of Connecticut. No one deserves to be taken away from the ones they love.

On May 6th, Henry faces deportation to Venezuela. If we don’t act, their family may be torn apart. The head of Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano has the power to stop the deportations, but it will take a massive public outcry to force her to stand up for Josh and Henry – and the 36,000 other families who face a similar fate.

Sign the petition to keep Josh and Henry together:

One of my favorite “things”… Author Lynn Flewelling

I grew up reading fantasy – everything from humorous stuff like Piers Anthony’s Xanth series to the drama of Donaldson’s Dark Mirror duo. That love of fantasy followed me into adulthood. Of course with rapidly exploding responsibilities and commitments and even more rapidly dwindling funds, I’ve been forced to become increasingly selective when I look at new authors. So, when I found Lynn Flewelling, I started slow, just bought book one –

There are three books in the initial series – Luck in the Shadows, Stalking Darkness, and Traitor’s Moon. Each one is better than the one before it. Then, Flewelling brought joy to the universe by adding two more chapters to Alec and Seregil’s story with The Shadows Return and The White Road.

(Notice the HUGE improvement in cover art – yum!) The Night Runner series is fantasy at its best. Alec and Seregil are a complex and multi-faceted couple – their relationship develops so naturally and organically… it’s just beautiful. And the layers! When you have a long-lived race like Seregil’s, layers sorta develop whether you want ’em to or not, and Flewelling does an elegant job of it.

Flewelling also went back and did a “prequel” trilogy, which I have, and is on my summer TBR pile.

So, from one avid reader to another (hopefully many others), I’m giving you the gift of Lynn Flewelling. Enjoy!

My baby isn’t PERFECT?!?!?!

Oh, the pain of editing. It’s bad enough to do it on my own. I’m one of those anal writers who bleeds over every single word I put on the page. It’s absolutely painful for me to go back through and revise stuff myself, but it’s downright excruciating to have someone else do it.

I’m lucky in that Sierra is gentle with me, and doesn’t change much of what I write. Of course, that just means I have to do it myself.

Of course, the whole “copy editing” thing isn’t so bad. After all, the mechanics of writing is my day job. And anal doesn’t even begin to describe the number of times I’ll go over a piece for grammar before turning it in. (It’s worth noting that even a “grammar expert” like myself makes errors – I think it’s impossible for anyone to completely catch all their mistakes. We see what we expect to see, and thus miss things on occasion.)

It’s the editing for content that kills me.

No parent likes to hear that their baby isn’t perfect, and no author likes to hear that their “baby” isn’t perfect. Not when we work and sweat and bleed making it as emotionally powerful as possible. And to me, it just makes it worse when I look at one of my stories and see that my beta reader, or editor, or reviewer is correct in their criticism.  It KILLS me that I didn’t hit a home-run on my first try.

That said. I’m working on edits for two of our previously released novels that are about to go into a second edition. There are significant changes in both stories – some Sierra and I pushed for, some that have us both spinning a little bit. I know we’ll make the changes. That really isn’t in question. The question is, how do we make the changes in such a way that we don’t compromise our vision for the stories, that still plays to our strengths and that doesn’t involve hours and pages of re-writing?

We’ll figure it out – we always, eventually do – but the process is bound to give us both hives for a while. And, oh God, what happens when it’s time to edit that one novel that I love beyond words? I’m already storing up the Xanax for that one!

This Ain’t Springtime in Michigan…

Springtime in Michigan =

  1. Rain
  2. Snow Flurries (which today have been falling since before I crawled out of my nice warm bed and are currently sticking like a sonofabitch)
  3. More Rain
  4. Brown, Dead Grass
  5. Drizzle

So, since I’m not in L.A. at RT, or in Las Vegas (sigh) watching hot street artists, I’ll sit and gaze at this: