Friday, August 31, 2012

The Party's Over...and Just Beginning!

Yes, my tenure at The Debutante Ball has, sadly, come to an end. It's time for me to hang up the party dress...

And...*bites knuckle*...the tiara...

(The previous photos are representations of what I wore to the Ball every Friday, courtesy of MorgueFile. My hair isn't really brown.)

Click here to read my last *sobs* post. (WARNING: Because I wrote it, it contains a gratuitous "arse.") 

But enough this melancholy, bittersweet leaving stuff and nonsense!

Of course I will miss the Ball, but my life will go on.

(Consider yourself blessed that I'm not including a clip of Celine Dion singing at this juncture. Or worse, singing it myself.)

And so will the Ball, with a new crop of extremely lovely writers who are more than capable of keeping you entertained over there.

Me? I will be keeping myself busy with stuff like (can I get a drum roll?) this:

Ta-da! My local B&N set out a display of In a Fix early. I stumbled across it yesterday. So there you have it--the first sighting of my book in wild!

I', I'm just...well, it appears I'm speechless. But very, very happy. :D

What's making you happy these days?

Monday, August 27, 2012

An Eventful Monday. (With Catapult. And Cat.)

If you look above, you'll notice I now have an "Events" page.

I was going to put one in before, but until I had a second official author appearance scheduled, it would have been, strictly speaking, an "Event" page. I thought that might look funny, so I waited until the plural was appropriate. At least now it's accurate.

Not that I'm a stickler or anything...

I'm pretty sure that second "event" is only for the people who are attending the conference. Still, I'm counting it. And if there are any New Atlantic Independent Booksellers reading this, I sure hope you'll stop by my table there, because I'd love to meet you.

But EVERYBODY is welcome at the first event!

If you come (which I sincerely hope everyone within a reasonable driving distance will do), you'll get to hear me stumble through my very first public reading of an excerpt from my book! You lucky b@stards. I'm sure it will be (painfully) entertaining. To distract from that, I'm bringing chocolate. And a prop.

What prop, you ask?

TA-DA! This:

No, not the cat. The catapult. Which is relevant to the book, as those of you who've read an advance copy know. If you haven't read it yet...well, you'll see. *grin*

That's my daughter's cat, by the way. We're kitty-sitting Vera and her sister, Valentine, while the kiddos are on a well-deserved vacay.

Oh, gawd. I just realized this post contains not only book-pimpage, but also a cat picture.


But come's a cat. On a CATapult. Not only that, but it's a TABLETOP catapult, and it's on a coffee TABLE. A CAT on a TABLEtop CATapult on a coffee TABLE.

Who could resist sharing that? Not I. (Obviously.)

What haven't you been able to resist lately? Please share!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Friday is for FINALLY!

Yes, it is finally Friday! The last post you'll be getting from me this week. (Try to contain your excitement.)

Here's your link (you're expecting this, right?) to The Debutante Ball. Since it's Friday, it's my post. And since it's my Launch Week, I'm talking about (suprise!) In a Fix. And, yannoh, Thai food.

(YUM! *mini-reverie on Pad Thai with chicken*)

I possibly mentioned Manhattans.

Oh yeah, and I may have snuck in a picture of my daughter's cat, too.

So it isn't ALL book-book-book-yammer-book-book-book. Just so you know.

I hope you'll click over and say hi. You may even win a signed ARC if you do.  :)

Now for today's question:

Zippers, buttons, or snaps?


Thursday, August 23, 2012

Does This Plot Make My Butt Look Big?

Yes, it's STILL my Launch Week over at The Debutante Ball.

(I know what you must be thinking--will this week never end? Don't worry, only one more day!)

Today, I address the burning Plotter or Pantser question. Not to give away my answer, but here's a hint:

How about you? (Well, the writer "yous" among you.) Are you a plotter, or do you write by the seat of your pants?

P.S. You can still be a WINNER. Just leave a comment over at the Deb Ball to enter for a chance to win a signed ARC of In a Fix. I'm giving one away every day this week, so you have lots of opportunities walk away with the FREEness*!

*Heh-heh. That rhymes with ... um, never mind. Carry on. 

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Hump Day, Writing, and Quantum Theory

Got some good suggestions when I mentioned I'd probably be cutting back to twice a week with my blog posts. Still haven't decided exactly which days yet, but in the meantime here's another Hump Day camel for you. 

What's this guy shouting about?

(Photo courtesy of The Morgue File. It's a great place to find pics for free.)

Why, he's telling you go check out Deb Molly's post over at The Debutante Ball!

Molly asked me a writerly question about voice and plot, and I answered her the best I could. Which means, of course, I had to bring quantum mechanics into it...

Remember, every day this week you leave a comment over there (even if it's just "Hi!") is another entry to win a signed ARC of In a Fix. For FREE. As in, you don't have to shell out your hard-earned money for it.

Today's Question:

With regard to quantum theory, do you lean toward strings or particles? 

(Personally, I favor "Silly String Theory" -- I think the universe was sprayed out a giant can.)

Or, for the less scientifically minded ...

Ice cream: bowl or cone? 

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

It's Tuesday--what am I doing here?

Funny you should ask. The reason for this unusual Tuesday appearance it to remind you that this is my Launch Week over at The Debutante Ball.

Today, Deb Erika is beating the drum for me, and I'm answering her pressing question, "How the hell did you keep all that aura-adapting stuff straight in your head?"

Only she *cough* may have phrased it more delicately than that.

Oh, and you have another chance to win a signed ARC today. I'll even inscribe it however you want.*

So, stop on by here and enter. Or enter again, if you already entered yesterday. The more you comment, the better your chances of getting (almost) anything you want in writing from me.

*Well, withing reason. I mean, I won't write I.O.U. a million dollars, and sign that. What do I look like, an idiot? (No, that is not your obligatory end-of-blog question today.)'s your question:

I'm thinking of going from M-W-F posts to just two days a week instead, to free up more time for writing. Which days do you like to do your blog-reading? (Weekdays only, please. I'm not going to blog on weekends.)

Monday, August 20, 2012

Aaaand ... We have LIFTOFF!

It's finally here! My Launch Week over at The Debutante Ball!

Yeah, I know. It's not really officially the week my book launches. That's not until the first week of September (the 4th being THE DAY). But my term is almost over at the Ball, so I had to squeeze in where I could. (Heh-heh. I said "squeeze in.")

You see, when I first donned the tiara, In a Fix was slated to be released in July. But due to some mysterious alchemy in the publishing process, Tor thought it would work better as a September release. Who am I to argue with alchemy?

So, anyway, I'll be answering my fellow Debs questions all week, AND (this is the good part)...

I'm giving away a signed ARC (with bookmark!) every day this week! 

All you have to do to enter is leave a comment over there. Comment all five days, and you have five chances to win.

Today, Deb Joanne asks me about my guys.  (That's the same link as the one above, if you've already gone over.) Hope to see you there. :)

EDITED TO ADD: Okay, since Debbie Haupt showed up in the comments and linked to her very kind Library Journal review of In a Fix, I guess it's okay for me to share it, too. Click here to see it. (I swear I didn't bribe her!)

Friday, August 17, 2012

Friday is Out of this World!

NASA has been in the news a lot lately because of their marvelous success with the Mars Rover mission. (If you've been living in a cave, you can read about it here.)

Or, if you (like me) enjoy a humorous take on the subject, you can watch a little video some of the rock stars at NASA put together:

Ha! I love it.

Know what else is kind of cool? My dad (who died when I was twelve) was the photographer who took this picture of the original Mercury Seven astronauts:

Yup, it's autographed by all of them. (My eldest brother has the picture now, which is only right since he's the astronomy geek in the family.) Maybe not quite as entertaining as the Rover video, but I still think it's pretty special.

Oh, and before I forget--I'm over at The Debutante Ball today (it being Friday and all). This week we're discussing bad habits, which has me kind of worried...

Have a great weekend! But before you go, tell me ...

What are your favorite bad habits?

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

This Hump Day brought to you by ...

... Kari Lynn Dell, who has a great blog called Montana For Real. I get a serious case of Montana envy whenever I visit her little corner of cyberspace.

Well, mostly in the summer. In the winter ... maybe not. It's still beautiful then, mind you. But when I see that much snow, I figure there must be a snow shovel nearby, and that makes me want to run the other way.

Anyway, Kari was visiting the Calgary Zoo, and saw something there that made her think of me, so she took a picture:

I know. Who isn't flattered to pop into someone's head when somebody sees a camel's ass? 

But, as Kari said, it could have been worse. She might have thought about me when she was looking at the hippos. Guess I should be thankful for small favors. ;)

Kari took some other pics, too, which are so cute they almost make up for the one above.

This one is a sexy beast, don't you think? "Hey, baby, want to see me waggle my humps?"

This one looked odd until I realized it was two camels, and not one of Dr. Dolittle's pushmepullyous:

"Come a little closer. I dare you."

Thank you, Kari! Now I want to visit the Calgary Zoo, too.

Happy Hump Day to you all!

Oh, yeah ... the obligatory question. Okay, let's keep it relevant to the post today:

Which animal would bring you to somebody's mind? 

Friday, August 10, 2012

A Rainy Day Guest Post from TG

I'm super busy at the moment, finishing edits and working on a gazillion other things, both family and marketing oriented, so I asked TG to handle my blog post for me today.

Here's what he came up with:

It's raining, it's pouring,
This post is boring.
Go see Linda at The Debutante Ball

*sighs* You get what you pay for...

I promise there's a real post at the Ball. It's all about "voice," both literal and literary. Hope to see you there!

Try to have a nice weekend! :)

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

In Which a Camel is Named...

First of all, if you missed my special Tuesday post yesterday, you can click here to see the trailer for In a Fix. I'm still super-excited about it!!!!! (Note the leftover exclamation points. Sorry. They just keep popping out.)

Now back to our regularly scheduled Hump Day Post:

So, last Wednesday I introduced you to my new stuffed camel. I asked for opinions on the camel's gender, and for name suggestions. And you guys came through for me!

Six of you thought the camel was a girl.
Four of you thought the camel was a boy.
Five of thought the camel could swing either way. (Now, that's a wild camel!)

Girl names suggested:


Boy names suggested:


Gender neutral names suggested:


A great bunch of names!

And the winner is ... *drum roll* ...

None of the above!

Because there was a last-minute, dark horse entry from TG that was absolutely, in my admittedly biased opinion, perfect:

Engelbert Humperdinck.

Get it? HUMPerdinck? Come on, you love it, right?

What? You don't know who the hell Engelbert Humperdinck is? You whippersnappers, you!

*sighs* Look here. Go on. I'll wait.

Of course, Mr. Humperdinck was waaaaay before my time. (Okay, slightly before my time.) But once you hear a name like that, you don't forget it.

Of course, Engelbert is quite a mouthful, so maybe I'll shorten it to Bertie. Or maybe Dinckie. No, definitely Bertie.

And look! Bertie is so happy with his new name he's celebrating with a Manhattan! Now, there's a camel after my own heart. 

Yes. I realize the picture is a teensy bit ... well, blurry. This is because I, um, was trying to *cough* wordlessly express the dizzying effect of a Manhattan when coupled with Bertie's joy at being gender-fied and named.

Not, I stress, because I forgot to adjust the settings on my camera after imbibing my own Manhattan. (That's my story, and I'm sticking to it.)

May your Hump Day be happy. Or hilarious. Or hilariously happy!

Edited to Add: I'm being interviewed over at Dianne's blog, In High Spirits, today. Drop by and say hi if you have a chance. :)

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

IN A FIX Trailer!

I know, I know ... I don't usually post on a Tuesday, especially this late on a Tuesday. But I couldn't wait!

Here's the trailer for IN A FIX:

Okay, I like it. I hope you like it, too. :D

Also, !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

(Um, sorry. I couldn't contain my excitement.)

EDITED TO ADD the YouTube version of the trailer, in case anyone wants to see there. Or rather, watch it here, from there. Or whatever. I really have no idea if this makes a difference, but what the heck. Maybe it's bigger?

Friday, August 3, 2012

Book Yammering or Pet Pictures -- You Decide!

Okay, I can officially say this now: IN A FIX comes out next month!!!

One month from tomorrow, to be precise, but since it's now August, and my pub date is in September, I can still say next month.

Um, sorry. Just had to get that out of my system. I mean, everyone knows the wheels of traditional publishing turn slowly, and sometimes it seems like that elusive publication date will never arrive. When it finally starts to loom larger on the horizon, it's kind of exciting.

But I'm sure incessant posts about the subject must get old after a while, so I promise I'll try to contain myself between now and my freakin' book release next month!!!

The thing is, when something like this is going on in your life, it tends to become all-encompassing. It crowds a bunch of other stuff right out of your field of vision, so it's harder to come up with other blog topics.

BUT...I managed to do exactly that over at The Debutante Ball today. (Click here for proof.) This week's topic is "Friends." Now, I could have easily decided to talk about Ciel's (my mc in In a Fix) friends, but I didn't. (You're welcome.) I chose instead to talk about my furry friends, like this guy:

There now. That's a break from incessant book yammering, right?

Today's question:

What's your position on incessant book yammering -- pro or con?

Or, if you like to stay away from such controversial publishing topics like that:

What's your position on squirrel-cat relationships -- do interspecies love affairs really stand a chance?

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

A Great Big Hump Day Happy!

I don't talk about my kids very much on the blog here, they being adults and entitled to their privacy and all. I am, of course, chock-full of embarrassingly cute (and just plain embarrassing) stories about them, but my lips (and typing fingers) are sealed.

After all, they are (presumably) going to pick out my nursing home someday, and I'm hoping for a good one. One with a nice cocktail lounge, and a regular happy hour would be nice.

But sometimes I just have to share something they did. In this case, it's my son-in-law--the man my daughter had the good sense to pick as her life-mate.

I've mentioned before that he's a Navy pilot--excuse me, a Naval Aviator. He's one of those guys who takes off from and lands on the big carriers. I don't really like to dwell on that, since the whole idea of it scares me poopless, but he seems to like it.

Anyway, he just got back from a deployment, so there has been much rejoicing in their household, his parents' household, and our household. He and DD came for a quick visit last weekend.

And, knowing my penchant for Hump Day camels, my dear, sweet son-in-law brought me this from Bahrain:

Isn't he adorable? (Or possibly she. Frankly, it's hard to tell with a stuffed camel.)

Here s/he is hiding in our deck-top herb garden:

And going for the wine...

Hanging out in TG's music room...

And making friends with the bulldog I got TG to hold him over until he retires and can get a real, live bulldog he can walk himself, because I'm not following a bulldog through the neighborhood with a plastic bag...

I am so touched that DSSIL* thought of me while he was deployed, and brought me a genuine Bahraini camel!

So, do you think my new camel is a boy or a girl? 

Also, what should I name my new camel? 

*Dear Sweet Son-In-Law