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No, not one of those Wall Street banks.  I only wish I knew what to do about those.  In recent months, I’ve laid off the cable news channels in my house, because they seem to add little to my understanding of current events and much to my general feeling of unease.  But this week, that resolution is out the window.  It’s all about AC360 right now.  And I don’t mean to turn into a political blogger, but right now the uncertain state of our economy is really sapping…not my will to write, exactly, but definitely my excitement about writing.  Is anyone else out there feeling the same?

If there’s one thing the pundits agree on, it’s that this whole situation is far from over.  Like it or not, I had better just get used to writing through uncertain times. 🙂  So I’m going to focus on keeping my writing bank accounts healthy and robust.  You know, refilling that well of words inside.

Reading, of course, is the main way writers do this.  And as I blogged last week, I have a whole slew of new historicals calling me to my local bookstore today.  Thank heaven for happy endings.  But I realize I’ve neglected my non-romance reading of late, and I’m going to finally read a few other books that have been languishing on my shelves. The ones positively screaming at my from the bookcase this morning are Suite Francaise and March – both of which deal with moral ambiguity and … Read More »

Maggie and Gillian!

Congratulations, you two.  Please email me your wish lists and snail mail addys…

Thanks to everyone who commented, especially Gillian for giving us the link to Terry Jo’s blog.  Both darelings caught a virus this week, and we’ve spent several days quarantined and miserable.  Things are looking up today: we’ve decided everyone’s well enough to go on the overnight camping trip we’d planned.

Oh, and in case anyone’s wondering about that Unleash Your Story progress… Between the novella I completed, and some synopses I’ve been working on for my new proposal, I’ve written about 18,000 words this month so far.  Still 2000 to go before September 30th, and I know I can make it.  I’m taking a notebook and pen to the campground  🙂   As a team, the Chocolate Mafia has already raised over $1000 for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation!  And I’ll be pushing that total higher, as soon as I reach my goal and make my own contribution to celebrate.  Great work, everyone!… Read More »

**Contest alert!  Win some books!**

September 30 is circled on my calendar several times, because there are an insane number of books coming out that day that I’m absolutely *desperate* to read.  As in, I’m counting the minutes until next Tuesday.  I mean, seriously: Quinn, Kleypas, Guhrke in one day!  Not to mention, an amazing anthology.  So if you don’t hear much from me the first week in October, it’s because I’m hunkered down with:

Mr. Cavendish, I Presume by Julia Quinn.  I loved Jack Audley, the deliciously roguish hero of The Lost Duke of Wyndham, but I’m just desperate to get to know the quiet, enigmatic Thomas, and read his and Amelia’s side of the story.

Seduce Me at Sunrise by Lisa Kleypas.  OMG, have I been desperate for this story.  The moment I finished Mine Till Midnight last year, my very first thought was, “How will I possibly survive until Win and Merripen’s story comes out?”  I have a deep, visceral need to see them together as…Is it Merriwin?  Winnipin?  Other?

The Secret Desires of a Gentleman by Laura Lee Guhrke.  LLG amazes me more with every book I read.  Her characters feel so real to me.  I love her “girl bachelors” series, and the two previous installments have been instant keepers for me.  I know SDOAG will be the same.

It Happened One Night, an anthology.  Stephanie Laurens, Mary Balogh, Jacqueline D’Alessandro, and Candice Hern.  Okay, I’m sold.

Yes, the first week of October will be … Read More »

Yay! I’m actually officially here in my new blog digs.  Welcome!  I think next week I’ll have some sort of contest to celebrate, but in the meantime, I wanted to just thank everyone for bearing with me and share some exciting news.

SQUEE!!! Beverley Kendall, another Fanlit friend, has just signed a two-book deal with Kensington!  Her debut historical, tentatively titled A Lady’s Compromise, will be coming to a bookstore near you in Fall 2009.  Congratulations, Bev!

Lastly: Arrrh, mateys!  It’s International Talk Like A Pirate Day!  I’m celebrating by taking the darelings to ride Pirates of the Caribbean for the one millionth time.

But, since piracy does play a role in my second book, Surrender of a Siren (releasing late August 2009!), I thought I’d leave you a little excerpt, below the fold.  … Read More »

Hi!

I haven’t officially moved the blog to this site yet – as you’ll see if you poke around a bit, there are still some kinks to be worked out.  But you’re welcome to visit my old Blogger blog in the meantime.

Thanks for your patience. 🙂 (Love the emoticons in WordPress)… Read More »

First, the Unleash Your Story update:
(see previous post for an explanation)

Three days into the challenge, the Chocolate Mafia now has seventeen members! As a team, we’ve raised $220 toward our goal already.

As for my progress toward my 20,000 word goal – eh, there hasn’t been much. About 1,200 words or so. I knew this week would be a hard week to write, which is why I kept my goal pretty low. In a normal writing month, I’d be aiming for 25-30K. The darelings start preschool again next week, which will make a huge difference. This week, we’ve been doing the back-from-vacation shopping and meet-the-teacher open-housing and what-the-heck-why-not trips to Disneyland, and I’ve had no energy to write when my day finally winds down.

But enough excuses. I will get there.

One of the projects I’m working on this month, now that I’ve finished my trilogy, is a short story that’s connected to GOTH by a very thin thread. Ever since the idea for this story took shape last year, thanks to a conversation with Vagabond Lindsey, I’ve had the heroine’s name in my head as Cecily. As I write, I’m not sure this is the best name for her anymore…her personality is coming out a bit differently than I anticipated…but that’s of no moment. Although I may eventually do a Find-and-Replace to change her name at the end, I’m going to keep writing her as Cecily. And sentences like this are why:

“Leave him alone,” Cecily added … Read More »

Through the Unleash Your Story event, our team raised more than $1200 to benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Thanks to everyone who helped!… Read More »



Well, I was looking for a way to get motivated to start writing again in September, after taking most of August off. And lo and behold, along comes the fabulous Unleash Your Story event!

This is like a text-based equivalent of a fundraising run or walk. It’s all about setting writing OR reading goals to raise money for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, a worthy cause indeed. Because everything’s more fun in teams, we’re starting a Chocolate Mafia team (nothing like a little FanLit nostalgia!). If you click on the banner above, you can go to my fundraising page and either make a pledge to support me and the team (I’ve committed to writing 20,000 words in September) or better yet, join the team yourself and set a goal of your own. Those Unleash Your Story people are smart…they’ve got prizes.

Click the banner above and check it out!… Read More »

To squee about!

Huge congratulations to two – yes, two – wonderful writers, good friends, and former Fanlitters who have just signed with agents: Maggie Robinson and Manda Collins! Congratulations, ladies! I know great things are in store for you both, and I can’t wait to squee over your sales.

(Man, are we setting NY on fire or what? It’s squee-a-minute around here. Who will be next…?)

As for what I’m up to – I’ve been spending the last few days preparing character descriptions and plot outlines of all three books for the purposes of assisting the cover art designers. It’s terribly exciting, I must say. My editor and I did chat about possibilities in SF, but I really have no idea what style the covers will turn out to be. (There was a meeting about them, evidently, which occurred while I was out of the country. A whole meeting! Really, the idea of people having a meeting in NY about my books while I was scarfing cheap beer and boiled peanuts on some beach half a world away…it’s just so very cool.)

Honestly, I’m just stupidly thrilled that they care enough to ask what my heroes and heroines look like. I can’t wait to see what the artistic geniuses at Ballantine create.… Read More »

Hey, I’m back. My body is still on SE Asian time though, which would be why I’m up blogging at 3AM. Mr. Dare has promised the darelings donuts in the morning if they sleep through the night (something they failed to do our first night home…and our second). I, however, know I am assured of donuts whether I sleep or not. It’s just a matter of how much coffee I drink with them. 🙂

So, I’m up blogging at 3AM.

I’ve been meaning to blog about this topic for a while now, but somehow never found the time, what with all this traveling and deadline-meeting and squeeing and whatnot.

At this point, I have written three historical romance novels. Together, they comprise a completed trilogy and represent a fulfilled contract. Thus I find myself in a transitional phase, taking stock of what I’ve learned and dreaming about what I want to write next.

After writing these three books in one genre, what can I say for myself? I still can’t say I’m in print, LOL, but I can say that my voice feels very solid. That statement doesn’t exactly fit the definition of an accomplishment–it’s more of a reassurance. It gives me the confidence that I can write down whatever story I happen to dream up next.

Authorial voice is a tricky creature – elusive, shifting, hard to define. But editors and agents are always saying (so it seems) that voice is what sells a book.

To me, one’s writing … Read More »