Monday, September 16, 2013

Just so you know



So, I just had a weird dream and I thought I’d share some of it with you.  My dreams are one of the ways I come up with ideas for short stories or novels.  I won’t go into extreme detail about the dream but, here goes.

I’m standing in the door of a market watching a thirty-something, hard-body bag boy bag groceries.  I’ve written him a love letter letting him know that I know he’s a werewolf but I love him anyway.  Somehow, hard-body bag boy has the love letter in his possession and he is severely pissed off.  Is it because I love him?  Is it because I know he’s a werewolf?  Is it because I refer to him as hard-body bag boy? 

No clue.

Anyway, I’m suddenly standing in front of a large, Victorian-style home and it belongs to me and my mother.  In this dream, my mother happens to be a cherry-blonde white woman.  Have you noticed I’m African-American? 

Suddenly, Sam and Dean Winchester are there with me because they’ve heard that hard-body bag boy is out for my blood.  So we start werewolf proofing the house. 

The villain his there!  Trying to get into the house and after all that proofing, he gets in!  Me, Sam, Dean and my cherry-blonde mother are now in a room that is completely safe.  By some crazy circumstance we have now gone into a singing, costume changing montage and let me just say that Sam Winchester, Jared Padelecki, looks good in nothing but the American flag (WTF!)  posing like Mick Jagger and Dean Winchester, Jensen Ackles, looks good in…everything! 

All of a sudden, Miley Cyrus comes crashing through our safe room on a freaking wrecking ball!  Scares the bejesus out of everyone, including the insane, hard-body bag boy. 

I woke up.  Scared.  Looking around the room.

And there you have it.  Sounds stupid and I don’t know where it came from, but now I have an idea for a short story. 

Betcha’ can’t wait to read it.

 Just in case you were wondering, no I didn't have any alcohol before bed.  But, I think I need a drink after the shenanigans that went down in my dream...

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

How We Writers Do It!



You ever see that Brad Pitt and Edward Norton movie Fight Club?  I freaking love, love, LOVE that movie.  There’s drama, comedy, suspense, crazy sex and crazy people.  I.  Love.  It.  

So, does anyone know the first rule of Fight Club?  You do not talk about Fight Club.
Second rule of Fight Club:  You do not talk about Fight Club!

I believe us writers are a part of the Right Club.  Yes, the Right Club.  I use the ‘R’ because us writers are oh so right!  Cheesy, yes.  But true.  We write books and stories that people are able to disappear in to.  I know I do! 

There are a few rules of Right Club we need to abide by.  So, what is the first rule of Right Club:  You must write every day. 

Seconds rule of Right Club:  Dang-it!  You must write every day!!

Third rule of Right Club:  Write stuff you would want to read.  How do you do that?  Read books.  I don’t believe you can write a book of any genre if you don’t read that genre.

Here is a great example.  I don’t read Urban Fiction, also known as Street Lit.  While many people love to read Urban Fiction, it’s just not my bag, baby.  A critique group member and fellow writer-buddy, Faye McCray, and I have joke.  I always say I’m going to write an UF book about a prostitute who has dreams of being a Dolphin Doctor (she doesn’t know the terms ‘Veterinarian’ or ‘Marine Biologist’ but dammit, she wants to be one!) and she faces many tragedies on her way to becoming a Dolphin Doctor.  In the end, she gives up her dreams and becomes a Pimp.  A very nice pimp who is good to her ho’s. 

But here comes book two!  She becomes… (dah, dah, DAHHHH!!) a people doctor who works at the free clinic because she wants to help prostitutes lead healthier lives. 

I know.  It sucks.  But still.  She thinks it would be a hit.  I’ve only read two Urban Fiction novels so I couldn’t, and wouldn’t, safely write a book in that genre.  Just so you know, my husband also thinks I should write this book.  Apparently, it’s a great idea.

Fourth rule of Right Club: Celebrate!  Dude, you just wrote a book.  Disco Boogie and be happy. 

Now it’s time to reread, rewrite, reread, rewrite and once you are proud and believe it’s the best it can be, start looking for an agent to stalk, I mean, to query. 

Now here is another monster:  writing your query.  We need another club for that one.  Once I’ve successfully written one we’ll talk about it.  Actually, I did and the agent loved it.  I just hadn’t finished writing the book when I wrote the freaking awesome query!

I’m trying my hand at self-publishing so that when I do query agents I can say, “Hey, I have a fan base and I know that if we work together it’s going to rock!”

There you have it.  That’s what I’ve got.  It’s good.  It’s not law but it’s good. 

Whadaya think?

Oh, yeah.  And writers in the Right Club are like Bradward (Brad and Edward).  Or shall we call him by his name: Tyler Durden.   

We fight with ourselves every day.  We fight to make time to write and edit.  And sometimes it gets dirty. 

But don’t worry.  We’ll get it done. 

Monday, September 9, 2013

You don't even know!



Have you ever read a book?  A book so awesome you sat and tried to figure out how the heck the author came up with the idea?  You were just so amazed and you sat and wondered how that person’s brain works.  Did they dream about it?  Did it suddenly pop into their head?  Did they sit and will it into being until they were able to breathe through their eyeballs like that dude on the Roseanne Show when Jackie and Roseanne went to a spa?

I sit and wonder how J.K. Rowlings’ brain works.  The reality she created in the Harry Potter series… mind-boggling!  Mimi Jean Pamfiloff and her gods and vampires… awesome brouhaha!  C.J. Ellisson and her vacationing vamps… love it!  Stephen King and his…Everything!  Epic!  R.A. Boyd and her stuff… fantastical!  (I just had to toot my own horn.)

Writing a book is hard.  I digress.  It flows when a person has a natural talent, but it is hard nonetheless. 

Where am I going?  Here it is. 
Don’t tell writers that you’re going to write a book because and I quote, “How hard can it be?”  Umm, exsqueeze me!  How hard can it be?

People who love to read and who would love to write a book: one of the most insulting things you can say to a writer about writing a book is, “How.  Hard.  Can.  It.  Be?”  And then to follow up with, “People write books every day.”

Really?  People do a lot of things every day but that doesn’t make it easy.  People teach kids.  People make stained glass windows.  Mathematicians do math stuff.  That doesn’t make it easy.  
 

To my fellow writers, I commend you .  To teachers of every level, I commend you.  To the mothers who only got four hours of sleep and then went to work, came home and spent time with their families, tried to carve out ten minutes of alone time and then managed to make it through the next day with only five hours of sleep, you are awesome.  To that douche who thinks it’s easy to write a book, I’m giving you the finger. 

What books have taken you away recently?  Marie Hall’s Kingdom novels have been my thing for the past month.  I’m sad that it had to end.  Mimi Jean Pamfiloff’s Vampires Need Not… Apply?  Here I come.  And after that, I think I’ll reread Alice Clayton’s Wallbanger for the third time. 

Have any suggestions for me?  Anything you think I’d love to read?  I’d love to hear about it.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Places I've Been



Have you ever fallen in love with a character in a book?  A movie?  Anyone who follows my blog knows that I fell in love with New Orleans years before I visited that wonderful place.  Anne Rice weaved a web so wonderful in her vampire novels that you not only knew the characters, but you took the journey with them.  I walked the streets and back allies with first Louis and then Lastat.  I visited bars and cathedrals long before I ever stepped foot off of a plane.  

Authors who can do that rock!  They rock the bells.  They rock around the clock.  If you can think of any other sayings that involve rocking, you just let me know and I’ll make an addendum to this here blog post!
Ladies and gentlemen, I just discovered an author who made me fall in love with her characters and a far away world called Kingdom.  Last year I downloaded Marie Hall’s Her Mad Hatter for free.  Just so you know I have hundreds (closer to 700) books on my Kindle and I’m slowly making my way through them.  And last week Her Mad Hatter was the next one to be read.  I was there with Alice and Hatter in Neverland.  It was crazy and wonderful and scary and sexy.  So I moved on to the next novella in the series, Gerard’s Beauty.  It was rugged and funny and sexy.  I know this world!  I've been there!  (Yes, I'm a weirdo)  When I tried to move on to the next one I found that it had already been downloaded on to my Kindle.  Too many books downloaded makes it hard to keep track of what I have and don’t have.   

Needless to say I finished them all.  I wish there was a plane or train or timey wimey contraption to take me to Kingdom because that place is magnificently beautiful and intriguing.  And all the people there have their own kind of crazy kindness that seems welcoming.  

I’m sad to say that I finished all of the stories of the Five Bad Boys of fairy tales.  Lucky for me Marie Hall has another series coming out focusing on the misunderstood ladies of Kingdom. 
So… you know where this is going, right?  Yes!  You do!

Don’t you want to take that journey with me?  I’ve dreamt up an entire world in the Line of Lilith series that I can’t wait to share them with you.  You can always start the journey by checking out Hunted by Angels  It’s going to be free in a few weeks.  And for those of your who have already read it, next week Finding Angels will be released and you can continue the journey.  One day (God, please let it be soon!) there will be so many people checking me out and reading my books, I won’t be able to count them!  

And that’s just fine with me.  I write because I have to let it out and you read because you have to take it in.  You grow with characters.  You are happy when they are and you mourn for their loss.  That’s a great book.  When you feel like you know them personally, that’s a great book.  When you sit and feel like you know the next step of a character and can’t wait for them to make it, that is a great book!  

I hope I can be that for you.  
 Come on.  Walk with me.  

Take my hand and let me tell you a story.  You know you want to.