Monday, July 28, 2008

Christmas in July

Yep, it's Christmas at my desk right now. I'm writing a short story that I'm hoping will find a home this year, but I realize I'm a little late getting into the game with the holiday season being only 5 months away (gasp! Isn't that nuts?). It doesn't really matter to me if it is too late (which I won't know until I sub it), because, holy whah, is listening to Xmas music therapeutic! I had a whopper of a headache not that long ago and I was anxious to the point of squirming in my seat. But a little Faith Hill and Where Are You, Christmas? later, I feel like I've had a few glasses of hot, spiked apple cider. Heck, this is some pretty cheap emotional therapy. I'm disappointed I didn't think to do this before!

Anyhow...this story is calling me, so back at it I go. If I finish before I leave this weekend (hubby's cousin is getting married and Middle Kid is the ringbearer), I'll post an excerpt. My very first excerpt! :) Until then...hope you're having a great week! If not, I swear...dig out the holiday tunes and all will be well in no time! :P

Saturday, July 19, 2008

I Need...


Or all three. Whatever.

Unfortunately, I don't have the luxury of a gourmet coffee shop within the next 25 or so miles, so I'm going to try to make my own. I found this recipe online here.


1 1/2 cups strong hot brewed coffee
3 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons chocolate syrup, such as Hershey’s
1 cup ice cold milk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
Handful or so crushed ice
Lightly sweetened whipped cream, for garnish
1 small piece semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, for garnish

I'm not sure about the brown sugar. Think that's really necessary? I don't. I'm gonna skip it. I'll let you know how it turns out. :)

Do you have any fabulous at-home coffee recipes you're willing to share? I've only gotten into the coffee thing over the past couple of years or so and even then I only allowed myself to indulge when I'd be out and about shopping with my mom and little sis. So, I'm kinda wet behind the ears, so to speak, about all the fancy schmancy kinds of drinks out there. Throw a few at me. I'll give 'em a try and maybe, just maybe I'll be able to blame YOU for my next addiction. Wouldn't that be fun? :P

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Still Waiting

For news as to whether I'll be getting a job or not. :(

I'm kinda bummed. Especially after dealing with the zoo animals (aka the kids) this morning. Realistically, I couldn't start until the end of August anyhow--and they (being my prospective new bosses) know this. So...there really isn't any hurry on them calling me back. But...I'd really like to know. So I can make a really funky countdown calendar (I'm thinking like an Advent calendar with chocolate :) ) and celebrate the hell out of every day I get through. But, alas, I'll just have to be patient. Good things come to those who wait, right? :)

Oh a positive note, I'm writing again. Okay, so I haven't written for a couple of days, but I wrote a ton on Sunday (more than 6k!! Go me!!). It's been virtually impossible considering the monkeys swinging off the chandeliers and what not. :( I'm hoping for a super productive weekend again and my ultimate goal is to have the rough draft finished by the middle of August so I can let it sit and simmer a bit while I settle into another semester of school. Then maybe have it edited and off to CPs by mid-October so I can start something new for NaNo (OMG, can you believe I'm talking about NaNo already? Wasn't the last one, like, just yesterday?).

Anyhow, that's all that's new in my neck of the woods. What's going on in yours?

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The Scoop on NGTCC...

The Romance Divas annual Not Going to Conference Conference will make you feel a bit less deprived! Amazing workshops, a star-studded guest list and awesome giveaways, all on the Diva forum! Don't miss it!

Coordinated by Seeley deBorn!

Here's a bit of a schedule update for the Q&As and Workshops...

Wednesday, July 30

Paula Guran, Editor, Juno Books
Q&A on Creating Kick a** Heroines

Laurie Rauch, Editor, Samhain Publishing
Workshop on What Happens After the Contract (aka Editors are People Too!)*

Thursday July 31

Joyce Hart, Hartline Literary
Q&A on Inspirational Romance Stories and the Inspy Market

Sandra Schwab, Historical Romance Author
Workshop on Historical Accuracy and Anachronisms

Friday, August 1

Yolanda Sfetsos, Author of Guarded by Stone
Q&A on Paranormal and Urban Fantasy World Building

Katie MacIver, KatieDidDesign
Workshop on Website Design and Color Selection

Saturday, August 2

Joey W. Hill, Erotica Author
Workshop on Plotting Erotica and Erotic Romance

Rhonda Stapleton, Editor and Author
Workshop on Style and Voice

2008 Romance Divas Not Going to Conference Conference

Excited yet?

How about if I list some door prizes?

  • What Gwen said" mug donated by Gwen Hayes
  • 3-chapter critique of a YA by Simon Pulse author Rhonda Stapleton
  • 3-chapter critique of a YA, chick lit, or rom com by Golden Heart Finalist Amanda Brice
  • An ebook of your choice from Nell Dixon's backlist
  • An ebook of either Second Sight (paranormal romance) or Dragons' Choice (fantasy romance - dragon-shifters) from Debbie Mumford
  • Ten dollar Amazon gift certificate from Jodi Henley
  • Lush stuff from Seeley deBorne
  • e-book copy of Chasing Shadows from Erin Richards
  • Paperback copy of Iron Horse Rider OR Smiling Eyes from Adelle Laudan
  • Book thongs from Angeleque Ford
  • 3 chapter critique from Sela Carsen
  • winner's choice of ebook copy of "Not Quite Dead" or "Heart of the Sea" by Sela Carson
  • e-book copy of HEATWAVE by Eden Bradley
  • e-book copy of BREAKING SKYE by Eden Bradley
  • a box of goodies, trade and paperbacks, bath products candles, etc... All for a fun and relaxing home spa day treat. courtesy of The Midnight Moon Cafe
  • 1 download each of Natasha Moore's Samhain books, The Ride of Her LIfe and The Passion-Minded Professor
  • a copy of "Painted Soul" by Mary Quast
  • e-book copy of HER CINDERELLA COMPLEX by Jenna Bayley-Burke - Samhain
  • e-book copy of PAR FOR THE COURSE by Jenna Bayley-Burke - Samhain
  • e-book copy of FOUND by Jenna Bayley-Burke - Wild Rose Press
  • e-book copy of NIGHT OF INSPIRATION by Jenna Allen - Phaze
  • e-book copy of ON AGAIN by Jenna Allen - Phaze
  • $10 gc to Amazon from Kendal Corbitt
  • ebook Vampire Oracle: Harmony by MG Braden
Plus a lovely bar of wonderful Chagrin Valley hand made soap, Caramel Pralines jar candle, handmade jewelry, Tarot readings, a Lush box for European Divas/Dudes, a $10 fictionwise gc and much more!

Monday, July 14, 2008

New Diva Release

Maggie McCleary’s departure from her life as a cat burglar had been a choice. Her return was not. She can't deny the erotic thrill of the work. Now, with her father Sam held captive, she must pull one last job and that old excitement is getting the better of her.

Flush with success, she stands before the open safe but a strong voice and steel grip from her past brings her back to reality, and she gives in to the surge of desire. Trevor is the one who got away, or rather the one who deserted her, leaving their life of crime behind. But if the old thrill is back, so is the old flame, along with an attraction that never died.

He is the lead detective charged with trapping the famed cat burglar, Sam McClearey, but he wasn't expecting to find Maggie again. Determined to protect her at any cost, Trevor takes her into his own form of protective custody, agreeing to help her find her father’s kidnappers. As they work together to smoke out those shadowy figures trying to frame her, desire flares between them, setting Maggie's world reeling. Trevor left her broken hearted, and now it seems he loves someone else. But neither can deny the passion consuming them, and Maggie knows she must find the kidnappers to get her own life back. With single-minded resolve, Trevor vows to protect her even if he has to keep her under lock and key, or follow her through every escape attempt to keep her safe.

Available now!

I'll also be reviewing An Unwilling Thief at Romantic Bites on Friday, so come on over and check it out! Don't forget about the July contest!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Not Going To Conference?

Check out the "Not Going to Conference" Conference at Romance Divas! :P

Romance Divas NGTCC

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Girl Friday

Rather than randomly posting reviews at Romantic Bites, we've decided to go to a schedule to make things easier and it turns out my day will be Friday. :P This week I'm reviewing Sophie Kinsella's Remember Me? (big surprise since I've talked about it enough,huh?) so stop on by and check it out. And don't forget to comment so you get entered into the July contest for a $40 online B&N gift card!

So, I've Made The Decision...

After months of dancing around the inevitable--my disgust and hatred with doing informal, at-home daycare--I've finally decided to call it quits. Of course, the moms of the kids I watch don't know it yet and they won't until I've solidified a new job for myself, but my time as a Kool-Aid and hot dog wench is slowly but surely dwindling.

My plan (or my hope) is to have a job by the time school starts at the end of August. I'll only be working part time, which will get me out of the house (halleluiah!) three days a week and will also end up paying me slightly better (double halleluiah!). I'm kinda bummed because obviously I won't be able to run over to the computer to jot down any fantabulous ideas I might have story-wise during the day, but I think in the long run, getting out and not having kids under my feet all the time will help my creativity or lack thereof.

I am so excited. :P I mean, my job won't be anything super exciting (if I get the one I'm shooting for), but it's close to home and it's flexible, which is important for me still having two semesters of college left and still having little kids of my own.

And that's all. :) Hope y'all are having a great Thursday. Anyone have superawesome plans for the weekend? Anyone have a 'going back to work' story you want to share?

Monday, July 7, 2008

And We're Back...

To sum up my weekend away in one word...meh. While it wasn't nearly as fun and relaxing as Memorial Day was. The park was so packed (quiet, though, if you can believe it), that we couldn't look away from the kids for a second without worrying about them wandering off into someone else's campsite and eating all their food (I swear they ate nonstop!).

The only exciting things that happened all involved my middle kid. The first was when our 120lb. Lab took him (40lbs) for a, slide...down the middle of the gravel road. Surprisingly the road rash wasn't too bad, but you'd have guessed the poor kid had been gutted by the amount of screaming he did. But as if that wasn't bad enough, he fell out of our pop-up camper that night, too. Yeah. Fell out. Somehow the little shit managed to get his feet down between the cushion and canvas. He broke the bungee rope thingy that holds the canvas tucked in place under the camper and slipped right out. I woke up to him screaming (lucky me...we were sharing a bed) and when I went to reach for him, all I got was a hand and his body. Needless to say, I woke up hubby and made him go outside to get the poor, dangling, nearly beheaded kid. In his underwear. No way was I going out there because the morning before someone found cougar tracks on the beach. (Cougars might be all normal for you...but they were supposedly exterminated from our area a hundred years ago. Of course, they'd have to show up again when my kid decides to play Houdini in the middle of the night. All I could think of the next night was what would have happened if said cougar was perusing our campsite at the same time my kid did his partial disappearing act. Gah.)

Anyhow...the good news is I finished Sophie Kinsella's Remember Me? and I absolutely loved it. A bit slow going at first, but it ended up being fabulous and I'll of course be reviewing it at Romantic Bites within the next few days. :)

So, how was your 4th? Do anything fun? Have anything good to drink? I've got a story about what I drank this weekend, but I'll save that for later in the week. It's rather funny. Or at least in my drunken stupor, I thought it was pretty damn funny. Hehe...

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Review at Romantic Bites

I've reviewed Good In Bed by Jennifer Weiner at Romantic Bites. You can click here if you want to, to go read it. But, really, all you need to know is that you HAVE TO READ THIS BOOK! Hands down my favorite in a very long time.

And, BTW, I'm out for the weekend now. I hope everyone has a wonderful 4th! Hugs...

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

A-Campin' We Will Go...

So, we're camping again this weekend. But while I was absolutely dreading the adventure on Memorial Day, I am pretty excited about this trip. I'm not much for roughing it in general--I like to pee without having to worry about spiders, thank you very much--but I've decided that spending days out in the middle of the woods, out of the house, away from the phone, away from pretty much the best thing ever. I mean, I'm more or less stuck in the house, I'd say, about 24/6 with kids, both my own and the ones I watch. It's no wonder the walls feel like they're closing in most days! I need space...and air...and quiet. Even if it means cringing in fear and whimpering like a baby every time I have to pee.

Anyhow, since I didn't get a lick of writing done last time and I think I might have read a whopping four pages, I'm downsizing my goodie bag this weekend. This time, instead of toting the Alphie, a bunch of paper and all my favorite pens, and seven or so books, I'm only bringing with me the two books in this post, Remember Me? by Sophie Kinsella and The Sugar Queen by Sarah Addison Allen. I just got both in the mail and I've yet to read either of the authors, though I'm excited as heck because both have gotten some fabulous reviews, and frankly, after a year or so of reading a bunch of crap I mistakenly thought I wanted to write, I could use some quality, you know?

I'm wondering if you've read either of these authors? These books perhaps? What'd you think? Will I be glad I brought them along or would you recommend I grab another book or two as back-up?
Thanks! Hope your Fourth of July weekend is as fabulous as I plan on mine being!