Thursday, May 29, 2008

That Was Then, Damn It ;D

Hi all ;D

I’m a bit late posting this and apologize for that. It’s been nuts at work. In fact, before I could get out the door this morning my phone was ringing because some of my customers were having major problems.

My customers are pharma and biotech manufacturers. While they add to our lives by producing everything from life saving medicines to good-ole-cracker-jack vitamins, sometimes they forget that the sun doesn’t rise when they wake up in the morning. Besides, the sun can’t rise when they wake up, ’cause it saves that honor for when I crack open my eyes and sit up in bed ;D LOL!

Anyway, as the day went along the problems kinda of piled up. I even found myself at odds with a co-worker. In fact, we ended up in an argument. Bottom line - my boss gave me instructions to do something a certain way, and the co-worker didn’t give a fig and was determined to do it her own way. The problem with that was that I’d still end up on the hook if the tasks weren’t completed on time or in a satisfactory manner. Can we all say, ‘Bump that mess’ boys and girls?

So, I backed up, backed off…and called my boss to let her handle it.

Now, if that had happened fifteen or twenty years ago I probably would have handled it all wrong by continuing to press my point with my co-worker, even if I knew it wasn’t going to get me anywhere. However, the years of experience in a thing called ‘life’ have given me some wisdom on when to just back up, call it a day, and leave it alone. I do the same thing in relationships (which I haven’t had in for-EVAH!). I think the biggest compliment my ex has ever given me was in front of a counselor when he said, “She doesn’t ask me for much, she doesn’t nag me about anything, she handles the big things like a champ…” Most men would be happy to have a woman like that, wouldn’t you think?

But I digress. My question to you is this - are there things you used to do a certain way at one time in your life that you do completely different now? You don’t have to get too personal, but I’m just curious.

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Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Midnight Fantasies Anthology & Yay!

Midnight Fantasies
Mikala Ash, Amanda Carrell, Yolanda Sfetsos, &
Maggie Wylder

ISBN: 978-0-9815592-6-1
Retail Price $11.95
Trade Paperback

Is now available at all major online retailers and your favorite bookstore!

It's already over @ Amazon.com

The anthology features the four winning stories in the Seven Wonders of the World Contest:

Deep Encounter by Mikala Ash
The Way to Olympia by Amanda Carrell
Selkie Skin by Yolanda Sfetsos
Transcended by Maggie Wylder

This is the first time I've had a story published in print, so you can imagine how excited I am.

I hope you'll check it out. :)




Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Borders.com is Open for Business!

At last, we have another option for online purchases of books and other media--besides Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Borders.com is officially open. I checked out prices for my titles and see they're offering a 10% discount on new copies, the option of searching for used copies, and a third option of reserving the title in a store for pickup. I LOVE that third one! I have a Borders store right down the street. And now, I can do my shopping online, reserve the books I want, then run in and grab them. What a fab feature!

The only drawback--the online reserve system doesn't seem to guarantee the book'll be in stock. Not a problem for me, since I'm not driving a long distance. But if I did, that could be a problem. Also, it looks like you'll end up forfeiting your discounted price if you select the store pickup option, however, with no shipping you're probably still okay.

Here's the page for my latest Aphrodisia release, DARK MASTER.

The site appears to be easy to navigate.
It has a wish list feature.
Other books are recommended, based upon book content.
Reviews can be posted.
It appears you can customize your homepage to some extent. I haven't signed up for an account yet, so I'll need to do that first.

Overall, it looks like the folks at Borders have launched a terrific online bookstore! I'm looking forward to doing some shopping. Has anyone made a purchase already? How was your experience?

DARK MASTER, a Recommended Read (Dark Angel Reviews)
WANTON NIGHTS, Coming May 29! Changeling Press
Wicked-Hot Erotic Fiction

Thursday, May 22, 2008

New Covers 'n Stuff (xPost)

Hi all! Fabulous news! Hatsept Heat, Vampire Council of Ethics Book 3 is up on the Samhain Publishing coming soon page. To get a look, click here.

I also received the cover for the Pocket Books anthology that will contain Jaguar's Rule. It's called DOING IT THE HARD WAY.

I'd love to know what you think.

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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Revision & Change of plans

You know, I've been so busy with revisions lately, that I think I got stuck in a cycle. I almost feel as if I'm on a conveyor-belt loop. Sit down with the lappy, revise, try to get through the whole thing in a week, write down the stats, next! Yep, that's me. I'm starting to feel like a robot.

But you know, writing is so much more than just getting an idea that you fall in love with and spending time getting the story out on paper/screen. That can be the hard bit sometimes, but mostly for me, that's the easier bit. The hard bit comes when I sit down and read the story again after some time away from it. Most of the time, I hate it when I'm working on the second draft, but start to feel the love as I'm moving along. Once I'm working on the third draft, I've fallen in love with it again. Lol. And I start to remember why I sat down to write the darn thing in the first place.

It's such a crazy process, but a great one too. A rollercoaster of hard work and many hours spent behind the computer, or taking notes, or even thinking about it.

Last week I got through the second draft of my NaNo novel. I was quite happy with how it turned out, but on Monday two things that I'd left out just popped into my head. I have no idea why, but hey, there they were. So, that prompted a little extra research. And now I'm driving myself nuts trying to come up with the perfect title... and don't even get me started on the synopsis. :D

Anyway, no matter how much work is involved and how hard that work is, I LOVE writing. With a passion that has enough power to make me feel lost and irritable if I'm not at least thinking about the writing process.

But this week, I've changed the plans. I have to admit, it's not because I intentionally set out to not revise. Real life just happened. So, this week I'm taking a little break from the revision... but will be ready to dive in again next week.

So... what about you? Are you an obsessive writer too? Or can you suppress your muse and the voices inside your head?

PS. Thanks to Moira Reid, who fuelled the idea for this post.


The Midnight Fantasies print anthology will be available from Whispers Publishing on May 23.


Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Yesterday I was naughty.

No, I didn’t do anything illegal. Or immoral…what kind of girl do you think I am? LOL

So, what did I do? I played. With Photoshop. *g*

In late June, I have an ebook releasing with Changeling Press called Savage Garden: Flesh to Flesh. As much as I respect the cover artists at Changeling Press I wanted something very different for this first book in the series. I wanted to create a brand, something that has only been done with one series at Changeling. And I wanted that brand to stand out from other Changeling Press offerings.

Sahara creates masterpieces like this (which I could never do).This is the next book in my Passion Unbound series, WANTON NIGHTS, releasing this Friday. Here’s a blurb:

If you could be kidnapped by any man, who would it be?

Kaitlin Doyle had devoured many a steamy romance novel -- bondage stories, ménage stories, stories about vampires and warriors and werewolves. But her all-time favorite was Her Dark Knights. The heroes, Cayne and Ronan, were fallen angels. Demons! Who would have ever thought that she’d find evil beings so freaking sexy? Or that she’d fantasize about being possessed by two darkly seductive Masters? But still, that was just fantasy. Her naughty little secret. It could never happen in real life.

Then again, maybe it could…

One minute she’s sleeping in her bed, the next she’s dragged into the world of her favorite author’s imagination. And those sinfully gorgeous fallen angels are about to make her darkest fantasies reality. She’d never dreamed it was possible, that she could surrender to her secret desires.

Ohhhh, the wanton pleasure…

I respect every tedious minute that she’s put into the covers she’s done for me. One of them (Obsidian Mirror) won an award.

But for Savage Garden, I wanted a softer look, muted colors, lush images. This is what I came up with. What does this say to you? (BTW, please just ignore the big white X in the middle. This is a mock-up, not an actual cover)

Now, here’s the blurb. Did I hit the right notes? What do you think? I'd love to hear your thoughts!

In a savage garden dwells a dark magic...

In a matter of minutes, Dr. Noble Cavanaugh’s life is ruined. A stupid mistake costs an innocent woman her life and leaves her child an orphan. As she dies, she calls upon a powerful mage, demanding justice for Noble’s crime.

There is no police. No trial. No jury. Only the worst kind of punishment for the former doctor--total isolation. From all human contact. From the world. From light and sound and touch. From life.

But once every year Noble is freed from his prison, and he spends three bittersweet days with his devoted partner and lover, Sayer Lyon. They touch. Laugh. And weep. And then at sundown, he returns to his prison to wait another year, for the fall equinox.

This is how it’s been for five years, and this is how it will be for many more. At least, that’s what Noble and Sayer both think.

This year things will be different.

In a savage garden lies a man’s only hope for redemption.

DARK MASTER, a Recommended Read (Dark Angel Reviews)
Wicked-Hot Erotic Fiction

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Gas (damn it) and Pics from Ireland (xPost)

I promise there are pictures from Ireland below, but first I just have to say...

I am not going to complain about gas prices in the U.S. anymore. Hell, I'm not even going to whine or whimper. Why? Because I just came back from overseas and the price of gas over there is ri-goddamned-diculous!

For example, I spent $57 USD to put a QUARTER TANK of gas in a little Mazda rental car. Most folks on this side of the pond I've told this story to jump on the, "Well, it's because the dollar is weak right now" band wagon. But let me tell you what the folks over there said.

One guy told me, "Well, it's so bloody expensive because almost 80% of our gas price goes to taxes."

Another said, "Even before the dollar started takin' a beatin', I can remember paying alot for petrol. We buy it by the liter here at about 1.25 GBP right now. But it was around .89 GBP back in 2003, which would amount to more than 7.00 USD. And the dollar wasn't quite outpacing the GBP at the time, but it was kicking the piss out of the Euro by quite a bit back then."

While I was blessedly oblivious to how much it would cost me to replace the gas in our little rental, these are a couple of scenes from the streets of Dublin.

Next, hop over to www.dynamicthree.com/blog to see more pics of our trip to Dublin, Ireland and Liverpool in the UK.

A really cool billboard promoting a local theater production

This is the coolest damned bus I've ever seen. And I spent quite a bit of time behind it ;D

Shops don't stay open late on Sunday as people are usually hanging out with their families. These folks are enjoying the nice weather on a Sunday afternoon.

Happy Almost Friday!


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Wednesday, May 14, 2008

More Revision & Reading

Wow, I just made it today. Check out the time. :) I've been super busy. This morning we dropped my daughter off at school, and then did some running around before we got back home to have some lunch. Then the hubby got ready for work, and I got stuck into my current revision project. Phew. We always manage to squeeze in so much. Lol.

That's right, I'm still in Revision City. I've actually got the rest of May booked up with other revisions, and will keep going into June. Though I'm hoping to squeeze in some new-idea-note-taking as well. See, there's no point in doing a whole bunch of first drafts if they're just going to sit there... and I've kinda been doing that lately. But the list is going down now, so that's cool.

This week I'm working on the second draft of the novel I wrote during NaNoWriMo last year. I like to get a little distance from the story, but I think this was too long. Lol. Anyway, I'm working along at a nice pace. Currently sitting on page 183/255. I'd really like to get it done by the end of the week, so I can concentrate on something else next week. We'll see.

And because I've been revising like crazy, I'm also trying to squeeze in some reading. I've read quite a few books during the last month. A nice mix, too. And of course, I've been buying more as well. The book buying never stops. ;)

Anyway, these are the books I've read so far this year:

  • IRON KISSED: Patricia Briggs
  • DARKLING: Yasmine Galenorn
  • A RUSH OF WINGS: Adrian Phoenix
  • ONCE BITTEN, TWICE SHY: Jennifer Rardin
  • GLASS HOUSES: Rachel Caine
  • THE DEAD GIRLS' DANCE: Rachel Caine
  • MIDNIGHT ALLEY: Rachel Caine
  • WHAT'S A GHOUL TO DO?: Victoria Laurie
  • FOOL'S GOLD: Ericka Scott
  • TIME TRANSIT: Kay Austin
  • FULL MOON RISING: Keri Arthur
  • BOUNTY HUNTER: Deanna Lee
  • MIDNIGHT REIGN: Chris Marie Green
  • ALL TOGETHER DEAD: Charlaine Harris
  • LADY & THE VAMP: Michelle Rowen
  • GHOST OF A CHANCE: Kate Marsh
  • GRIMSPACE: Ann Aguirre
  • UNDER DARKNESS: Savannah Russe
  • RACING THE MOON: Michele Hauf

And let me say that every single one of the above books was awesome in its own way. I keep saying it, but I've been very lucky with the books I've been reading this year. Lots of excellent writers out there, that's for sure.

This week I'm reading Night Life by Caitlin Kittredge. I'm about halfway through and really enjoying it. Looks like I'll be getting stuck into this series too. :D

Anyway, happy reading!



Tuesday, May 13, 2008


This morning, I did my usual thing—opened my email mailbox, deleted all the chatter, opened the Google Alert to see who’s talking about me…

I learned today that my cover above made some poor author’s eyes bleed. This isn’t just any author either. It’s the author of a popular vampire romance series.

Do I think this cover is *that* bad? No. It's dreaded CGI, virtual Barbie/Ken dolls. But I've seen worse. I've had worse. At least it's not misleading.

Despite my opinion, call me silly, but I’m thrilled.

Why, you ask? Because she blogged about my book and included a blurb from the PNR review. It’s free promo. Yay! And I am convinced (at this point) that the old cliché is true—there’s no such thing as bad press, as long as I’m not foolishly stuffing my size 8 ½ down my own throat (I really try hard not to do that).

Just to make sure my overall attitude wasn’t way off base, I took a little (informal) poll on Romance Divas, asking whether they read certain blogs prone to snark, and whether what they read influenced their buying decisions. Most said what they read didn’t sway them either way. Several said they’ve bought books after reading a snark because they wanted to see if the book was really that bad.

So, I say snark away! I can take it.

Gee, I wonder when the Smart Bitches are going to do another cover snark...? Maybe they'd like to snark my upcoming release?

What about you? Have you been snarked? Or have you read a blog and decided against buying books by a certain author/publisher/whatever because of what you've read? I'd love to hear!


Dark Master, Available Now
Wanton Nights, Coming May 16, Changeling Press
Wicked-Hot Erotic Fiction

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Revisions & The Hunter

Well, I have to say, I'm really enjoying the pace of this week. For some reason, it doesn't seem to be whizzing by like the ones before it. And that's a good thing.

During the last few weeks I've been busy with revisions for several stories. I've managed to get three finished and am working on another one this week. I hope to get the second draft of the 40k BIAM done by Friday. Oh, and I'm also working on edits for an upcoming CP novella. I'm trying to get a bunch of things done during the next few months so I can start the second half of the year with some new projects.

Anyway, gotta get back to it. I hope you all have an awesome week!

Here's an excerpt of The Hunter for you:

It’s just a kiss, a little voice inside her head whispered. You’ve kissed for less reason than this before.

Miki lowered her face away from his a second before their lips touched. She closed her eyes, mourning the loss of what might’ve been. And what could be. After so many denials, Peter would probably walk away forever. She was sure of it.

“Miki, I don’t understand this game you’re playing.” He placed a hand beneath her chin and lifted it to face him. The hurt in his eyes shimmered as the traffic behind them switched on their headlights. Suddenly the noise of peak hour traffic on Parramatta Road pierced into her brain. It helped distract her from the pain that burned deep inside her heart. She hated unintentionally hurting him like this.

“I’m not playing any games, Peter. It’s just…”

“It’s just what?” His voice was no longer soft and comforting, it was demanding. The rigid set of his jaw only emphasized the change in mood. The fingers clutching beneath her chin tightened a little.

She winced, not from pain but from the reminder of the goblin’s hands around her neck. What was she going to do? How could she get out of this sticky situation without jeopardizing everything?

“It’s complicated,” she answered with a release of breath.

“Well, uncomplicate it for me.” His eyes widened in that handsome face of his. “I know you’re holding back for some reason, but I don’t know what. I think you’re scared.”


“Yes, scared about how you feel when we’re together. Miki, you might be trying to convince yourself that you don’t want to be with me, but I know otherwise.” He paused to sigh, and his warm breath played along her face. “I know you want to be with me as much as I want to be with you.”

All she could do was nod. He’d captured her emotions and fears spot on, without the additional faerie baggage she carried around with her.

Her heart beat fast, but she felt calm and relaxed. He’d managed to soothe away all the distress the goblin stirred inside her. And although Adolf was still a problem she’d have to deal with sooner rather than later, Miki felt that now might be time to deal with the “Peter problem”.

“Come home with me, Miki.”

“I don’t think that’s a good—”

He shrugged. “So don’t think about it. Just say you’ll come home with me so we can sort things out. You’ve been stringing me along for too long. And there’s only so much a man in love can take before he reaches breaking point.” Peter pushed his chest closer against hers and whispered, “If I don’t have you soon, I don’t know what’s going to happen to me.”

Miki shivered at the words. In that one admission he’d spilled just how much he lusted for her as well as…loved her? He’d said a man in love. Was that just a figure of speech amongst the humans? She didn’t know, had never hung out with human men or women long enough to know nitty-gritty things like that. She knew many of their customs and way of life because she’d become almost obsessed with this civilization, but she’d never ventured this close to one. What would he do or say after he found out she wasn’t human?



Thursday, May 1, 2008

Headed to Ireland...

Hi all,

I've been in Belgium for work all week, and today I'm headed to Ireland, then the UK to teach another class for the day job. I haven't gotten to see much of Belgium, but from what I've seen of the little town I'm in it's quaint, very old style (there's a church down the street built in the 1500's!). The bread it TO DIE FOR. I don't even eat bread all that often when I'm at home, but I could live on this stuff.

Hey, have you ever ridden on a plane with people sneezing all over the place? I'm sure their mama's taught them to cover their mouths when they sneeze or to sneeze in to the crook of their elbow to keep the nasties from flying all over the place. Well, needless to say I have the marvelous privilege of sitting right in front of a woman who didn't listen to her mama. And, yes, you guessed it, TJ is now fighting a frickin' cold. I went to the apothecary (that's what they call the pharmacy here, which makes total sense) and got some cold medicine. It was cool to see the lady to go a wall of drawers and pull out some powdered stuff and tell me exactly how to use it. Even though I feel like crap, she sure made me feel special.

I know you're wondering "did TJ pick up some Belgian chocolate or what?" Well, of course I did! Got it from a baker next door to the hotel. And they dont' have bagged bread here. People buy it fresh from the bakery. Also, the fruit and veggie department in the local grocers is HUGE! And it doesn't cost more to eat healthy here than it does to eat junk. Unlike home, where you can eat a whole crappy meal for $3 bucks and can't get a decent meal for less than $10, this place is a healthy eaters paradise.

Killing my pocket book, though. It cost me $200 to get 116 Euro! Gasp! Choke! I'll be glad when the dollar bounces back a bit! Sheesh!

Off to bed - I have to get up at 6:30am and head to the train station so I can make my plane on time.



(for a recap of my first night in Belgium, click here)

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