Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween! And special Samhain greetings to my broomstick sisters out there. ^_^ It has been a lovely season this year. Tonight is costume wearing, horror movie watching, and cookie baking night! I have things to prepare for the boys. Tonight we're going to celebrate a bit differently than the standard Trick or Treaking. Hubby won't be home in time for that. So instead, to keep him from missing out of the family time, it's going to be an inhouse party. I know Oldest is definitely looking forward to it! He'll be there eating cookie dough at the kitchen counter, I'm sure. ^_^

So many cool things are going on on the net too. If you're a reader looking for cool free reads online, check out Paperback Writer's EBook Challenge! The links for several free downloadable stories should be up there soon.

Also I'm proud to announce the Midnight Moon Cafe has launched its last freebie for our Trick or Treat Blog Party! Tempest Knight has penned a sexy tale of Sentinels and Shapeshifters in her erotic romance Unforgiven Pleasure!



Click here to download Unforgiven Pleasure. You have your choice of LIT and PDF formats!
((This book is HOT! It contains adult content so it's for 18+ readers only!))

There is also a prequel to this story over at the MMC called Sentinels Arise. It's also available as a free read!

And if you're in for a Haunted Tour, but don't want to leave the house, don't forget to visit our virtual -and sexy- Haunted House!

Today Cobblestone Press is having a special release day for Halloween! They are releasing several brand new paranormal titles. Blogger friend and fellow CP author Karen Erickson has a book called Haunted Dreams coming out today. It's one of the fantastic books being released at Cobblestone! Looking for sexy paranormal treat? Go browse through the wide range of titles available. Most of the ebooks are under $4.00! You can't beat that with a broomstick. *wink*

Yep, lots of events for readers are going on today, so don't miss out! Browse around, and if you see anything of interest in the freebie world, do the writer a favor and leave a comment and/or pass the links around. A lot of writers have worked very hard this Halloween season to offer up something to perpetuate the holiday spirit. I give them a pointy-hat's off salute for all their effort.

Happy Halloween!

Monday, October 30, 2006

In the Halloween Spirit

Yesterday hubby and I made a run to Walmart to pick up coffee creamer. (I cannot drink coffee without coffee creamer, and you do not want to see me without coffee--trust me on this.) We ended up buying a ton of Halloween things. I flinched a bit at the final cost, but I got there and remembered a promise I'd made to Oldest about having an at-home Halloween party. Mini is still a bit small to be Trick Or Treating, and Oldest is well... he's gotten to that awkward age to be running about begging for candy. So I decided on a happy medium--costumes, scary movies, popcorn (and popcorn balls), cut out cookies, and the whole 9 yards.

As we were going through the check out, the guy running the register said, "Wow, you guys are going all out for Halloween!" I couldn't help wondering if this is really so odd as he made it sound. We've got pumpkin lights strung, a rocking witch on the counter, a few pumpkins here and there in the front window, and our Zombie/Skeleton top hat man in the window. Hm. I guess we do go out a bit at Halloween. But how can you not enjoy a holiday that is so unpretentious as Halloween? No huge meal to cook, no credit-line busting gifts to buy... It's stress free and about the fun. Kind of like Mardi Gras. What's not to love?

So anyway, we dragged all this stuff home, and I realized I needed laundry detergent. Ha! Poor hubby. He trekked back to town to get it. And that cemented our weekend. Not too shabby. I think everyone had a good time. I feel a bit drained today, but still I managed to read a review book and get most of the review written. I suppose I should feel accomplished.

Tomorrow is Halloween. Whee! The boys and I will be baking cookies until hubby arrives home from work. Then the movie fright fest begins! ^_^

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Gearing Up For NaNo

Yesterday was a wonderful day! Hubby and I dropped the kids off at Auntie's house, and spent the day by ourselves. We ate out at Copelands, and went shopping. We considered going out to watch a movie--but there wasn't anything playing we wanted to see. To make up for that, we drove around our old home town looking at how things have changed from when we were in school, then we tried out a few new businesses that have sprung up since we left. We stopped by The Pottery Shop, which turned out to be a local craft seller. They had goregeous hand blow glassware, metal cut-out art and local jellies and candles and such. Hubby was interested in the windchimes they had, so I asked him why we didn't choose a joint anniversary gift. It would be more special to pick something out together. And so we did. We bought windchimes for the front of our house. They are twisted metal with a red glass bead. Very pretty. ^_^

Now for today... My dad is visiting. He's out dragging Mini bear around the yard in his wagon. In a bit hubby and I will go buy our groceries for the week. Then when I'm home it's time to start planning for NaNo. Oh, yes. I must prepare! No actual writing is involved. Merely plotting and taking notes on what I'm going to do. Otherwise I'll just sit down at the computer on Wednesday and stare at the screen. Not a good thing!

This year I'm going to try something a bit different, and write one 20-40k story, then write a short story or two for the rest of the 50k. I should face less burn out that way.

Only two days to Halloween! If you are looking for something fun to do, visit my Sexy Haunted House over at the Midnight Moon Cafe!

Friday, October 27, 2006

Doing the Anniversary Dance


Happy Anniversary to hubby and me! It's been 16 years today! When I think back, it's amazing to realize how much history we have together--more than just a house together, and the kids. There are many life adventures we've been through, both ups and downs--many things to reflect on and be thankful for.

Hubby was off work today and we spent a bit of time together doing this and that, mostly puttering around the house with Mini. Tomorrow we are taking the boys to his sister and making a day of it, just the two of us. I am very much looking forward to it!

Until then, I have been finishing up loose ends. I completed my project for the MMC, managed the bills, and have everything ready for tomorrow. Tonight I will drop in on the RD chat and hang with hubby and the boys.... Have I mentioned how very much I'm looking forward to my date with hubby tomorrow? I hope I'm able to sleep tonight!

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Special projects, anniversaries, and the writing cave

<Jones Soda - picture deleted> Candy Corn Soda! How's that for festive? I'd try it just to say I did, although I imagine a trip to the emergency room to prevent a diabetic coma would likely be in order. ^_^ The can looks so cool though. What do you think?

I am pretty late about posting today, but I've been working on a special project for the Midnight Moon Cafe, and have been buried up to my eyeballs in a lot of sexy... Well, I guess I shouldn't say. You'll all find out soon enough! Speaking of the MMC, today there is an awesome Midnight Brew posted. This week Cassandra Curtis has interviewed the talented Denise Agnew!

Now for me... I've made the final arrangements for the anniversary date with hubby, and I've finished the mass majority of my Cafe project. I've also made arrangements to attend the Red Sage Chat at Romance Divas on Friday. I encourage anyone who is considering writing romance fiction to join in on this chat. It starts at 8pm CST/ 9pm EST. This is a chat for both writers and readers, and is a perfect opportunity to ask a Red Sage editor any of those niggling questions you may have in mind!

My demon story for Cobblestone will pick up again after my MMC project is posted in the next few days, and I've already planned out the freebie fiction I have slated for February 2007. Oh yes, more sexy hot werewolves are coming... for free! So basically, I'm popping in and out of the writing cave every few minutes, and trying to keep things in order. So far so good!

Also, next Wednesday is the start of NaNoWriMo. That's National Novel Writing Month, for those that might be curious. The goal is to write a 50k word novel in a month's time. It doesn't have to be perfect, or polished. The point is to simply write your heart out for a month to say you did it. I will be participating again this year, though under a new username so folks can actually find me: CoraZane. ^_^ My previous username was a bit out there. Ha! Hope to see a few familiar faces this year!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Candy on a Rainy Day


I've put off painting a day. I've come down sick with something, and now it's raining cats and dogs. I'm surprised I have a net connection at all in this weather, so I really shouldn't complain. To keep in good spirits, I browsed around for festive pictures. Isn't Candy Jack here a gem? He's an AOL pic. *rofl*

Last night I hung out with the guys for a while, just watching tv and making Oldest leave Mini alone with the new toys. Erm, rather old toys. The ones I found in the closet... remember I wrote about those? The ones I argued with oldest about giving to Mini? I came in twice yesterday to find the new/old toys on the dining table out of Mini's reach. I asked why they were up there, and Oldest loudly proclaimed, "I don't want Mini to break them!"

Okay, we are talking about a 15 year old getting fussy over baby toys. Cheap ones at that. An old wind up musical "tv" and a bear shaped toy clock. Nothing fancy. Granted they were his, but as far as that goes he didn't even know we had them anymore until a few days ago. As far as he was concerned, I'd chucked them in the garbage when he outgrew them. He's never even asked for them over the years. I told him to leave the toys--and Mini--alone. *shakes head*

Tomorrow if I'm feeling better I plan to get as much done as possible. I don't want to have to do a scrap of housework Friday--hubby and I are making it an anniversary weekend. I'm going to attend the RD chat, and that's about the only finger I plan to lift all that day. Then on Saturday we're going shopping--yay, Victoria's Secret!!--and going out to eat without the kids. Woot! Proof that I am indeed a woman, and not just a mom. Ha ha!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Sponge Bath

Yesterday I managed to paint most of the dining room--the largest room in the house. I was doubtful while painting. The walls started out a dingy country white, and I sponge painted my custard yellow over the top of it. It looks fine in the yellowy lighting in the house, but I kept thinking maybe I should paint it solid because the contrast is so light.

Too late for that now, and I really have no desire to break out the rollers. The custard yellow looks much better than the white regardless, a lot fresher than the old paint, but I just couldn't help thinking something wasn't "right" about it while spreading it on the walls.

By the time I'd gotten use to the site of it, hubby came home from work. He came in the door, looked around and said, "You know, I think we should've used a richer shade of yellow." Uh... Ya think? I agree with him, but I'm so far into it, there's no going back.

Originally I showed him a dijon mustard shade of yellow--a burnt shade of yellow somewhere between a gold and a brown. I loved it, but hubby... Mm, not so much. Now I'm thinking he would've liked the dijon a lot better. I'm probably going to paint the whole of the house, then turn around, go a buy a gallon of the dijon and sponge a third layer on the walls. *sigh*

I chose to sponge paint because I thought it would be less messy, and take less paint. Well, I was partly right. It does take less paint, but it is definitely NOT less messy. Oh, sure, you drip less paint... but your hands! I had paint everywhere. On the walls, on me--on Mini boy!

While painting around the dining table, he backed up to the wall despite my "No, no, no, Mini, not there!" He parked his little butt right against the freshly painted wall. Oh yes. He had a nice little M-shaped paint blot right on the back of his pants. How do they do that? A little while later, as I was sitting on the floor, painting behind the deep freezer, he came and plopped down in my lap. He promptly stuck a foot right on the freshly painted door jamb. I gave a bark of exasperation, pulled his foot back...

He had that perfect little impression on his sole in yellow paint. The moon shaped curve along the edge of the foot, the narrow heel, and a dot on each and every tiny toe. My hubby laughed when I told him about it. He said I should have stuck Mini's foot to the banister and kept the print. *smacks forehead*

Getting paint under your nails is one thing, but I never would've thought it possible to get paint under your cuticles. Ah, the things you learn the hard way. And no. I did not wear gloves, so it's my own fault. But who the heck can hold on to a paint laden sponge with a pair of too-big rubber gloves on? So as you can see, yesterday was a learning experience. I am now tanking up on coffee, getting ready for another round.

Today I'm posting a picture of Marcus for inspiration. Isn't he gorgeous? He could come help me sponge paint. *lol* Somehow I don't think I'd get very much done. ^_^ Ah well, painting probably isn't his thing anyway. That's okay. He's still at the top of my hot list. Did you know he is the inpiration behind my character Dominic Lisandro in Wicked Temptation? Yep. I can't claim to know what he's like in real life, but he's definitely a naughty, naughty vampire...

Monday, October 23, 2006

Counting The Days...

Halloween is almost here! My nomination for Mr. Hottie of SamHain is none other than the delicious Brandon Lee. Although he is no longer with us, he is still a sexy sight to behold. Ripped abs and sleek leather pants! How can you go wrong? He gets my "grade A" stamp of approval for being just plain gorgeous.

Now on to other things...

Over the weekend I decided to get the house ready for the upcoming holidays, and let me tell you, I cleaned and cleaned and cleaned.

I started in the baby's room, went on to the 1st bathroom--throwing out everything old and stuff I knew we'd never use. I then cleaned out my office--holy cow, what a job!!! Then I moved on to the back bedroom.

I must say, I have been putting off the master bedroom for a long time. The room itself is clutter free. I hate clutter and will toss it as soon as I find it. However, there is this one closet...

Perhaps a few of you have one of those in your house. The closet. The one where you're afraid to open the door in case boxes, bats, or whatever else might come flying out of it?

Anyway, that's the closet I'm talking about. Before I go on, I must say our house is nothing spectacular, just a country ranch style. We have four bedrooms, which is perfect for us, but when we first moved in the place it was sadly lacking storage space. Two of the bedrooms had absolutely NO closets.

Me, being a closet freak ( a closet freak, not a closet freak--just to clarify!), I had to have at least one walk-in closet to be able to exist in the house. So, as hubby promised, after living in the house for about four years, he finally built one for me.

Actually, he built it to use to hold our esoterica things, but a few years down the road it actually became the closet I requested, because we received a surprise visit from the stork. That suprise visit crept up on us like something hidden in the night, and forced us at the very last minute, to cram every possible storage container in the house into that one walk-in closet. And we did that job to the absolute best of our ability. There were bins packed in that space all the way up to the ceiling.

I also distinctly remember knowing exatly what was in those boxes, while we were packing them away--and no one would dare argue with me because I was 8 months pregnant and therefore I knew everything. Things we needed were in one box, Oldest's baby clothes in another, a mountain of paper backs in this box... Keepsakes from heaven only knows what in that one in the corner.

Well, yesterday, hubby brought home the new bookcase I requested a few months ago, and its arrival heralded the dreadful task to come. The whole closet had to be rearranged so we could shove an old footlocker in there. See, the footlocker sat right where I wanted the bookcase. So, thusly the cleaning begins... First order of business: the storage boxes had to be sorted. All of them.

Cripes, what a job! It took six hours to clean out that one closet. And I must claim temporary insanity when I told everyone I knew what was in those said boxes. While I was throwing away the majority of the crap in these bins, I was thinking to myself--I wanted to rent a storage building to keep this junk?!

Oldest son came out of the wood work by the time I'd widdled my way through the top layer. See, I hit this wellspring of punk/new wave clothes that belonged to hubby and Cora version 1.0. Oh, yeah. I'm talking leather things, stripey tights and spikey things, doc martens older than my son, spiderweb printed gear, and enough silver jewelry to weigh down Charles Atlas.

There were bondage pants in there from before there was such a thing as bondage pants. I'm telling you, Oldest was going B-A-N-A-N-A-S. And I quote: "This is like shopping at Hot Topic--for free!" He could not believe his mom and dad were ever anything but frumpy, boring, responsible people. He also couldn't believe all this stuff was DIY. I had to explain to him there was no such thing as Hot Topic back in the day.

Oldest helped me clean down to the bottom layer of boxes after the initial discovery. And I couldn't believe all the mess that we had in there. Maybe 4 percent of the contents was worth anything. I saved some pictures I found, the holiday decorations, and a box of baby souvenirs from when Oldest was an infant. I found a box of Oldest's baby toys, and after much arguing with him, I gave them all to Mini. Oh, for Pete's sake... He got all the punk stuff after all! Why shouldn't Mini get something out of it?

The rest of the stuff ended up going to the dumpsters. Out of 30 storage boxes, I now have 7 in the closet. Ha! As it turns out, we didn't even have as many books to go on the new bookcase as we thought. *shrugs*

Next: on to painting. I have a seasponge and a bucket of Custard yellow paint ready to go. I'm going to go room to room this week, and paint everything as time allows. Oh boy... I can't help but wonder what I'm getting myself into now.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Everyone say "Cheese!"


It's Saturday, yay! Hubby and the kids are up and about, but I wanted to drop in and do a quick update. I have a day of chatting ahead of me, then I'm taking a mini vacation and working on some fun, upcoming projects. I also plan to spend some time writing my demon story. This one is proving harder to create than anything I've previously worked on.

See, the story is based on another story I wrote about 10 years ago. That manuscript is really hideous. I wrote it before I really knew what I was doing. The book had a great idea behind it and a cool theme, but it floundered horribly in the plot and dialogue department. Okay. I'll just come out and say it: The manscript sucked. But even now when I read bits and pieces of it, I still like the idea behind it. The grammar and syntax--now, that's attrocious. But the basic premise is worth saving. So here I am, taking it and running with it again... only this time adding a PLOT. Ha!

It's an amazing feeling to go back through some of my old manuscripts. They are all shamefully BAD, but when I read over them it's a real eye opener. I can see just how much my writing has improved over the years. The flow and voice is still there, only the work makes sense! ^_^ I can only imagine how my writing would read now if I hadn't gone on that huge writing hiatus--it literally took years off my writing life. But alas, that is water under the bridge.

The brood is getting restless, so I better go find out the plans for the day. *smile*

Friday, October 20, 2006

The Omen, Diapers, and Crispy Treats


Yesterday I got a surprise call from hubby around two pm. He was on his way home from work. He got tired of lingering around over there with nothing to do and decided to take off early. Around this time, Mini was getting that far away sleepy eyed look, so I took him on for a nap. By the time we got up, hubby was home with Bk! He'd stopped off and cashed his paycheck, picked up the burgers and even bought a copy of The Omen for us to watch.

Now, I've been a fan of The Omen for a long time. I've watched all the sequels, and I've even read the book. I was glad to see they followed the book more so in the remake than the original, but at the same time there was something a little less scary about this movie that the other. And the actors... Julia Stiles was supposed to be Damien's mommy. Somehow I just wasn't buying that. In the original movie, the mother looked... well, like a woman. Not like a girl playing dress up. And that's how it seemed this go around. Julia Stiles still does "teen angst" movies, how am I to believe she is an ambassador's wife, and the mother of a five year old?

Aside from that, the show itself was okay. Not much changed from the other version. *wink*

Well, I suppose I should get off my backside and get the Mini boy dressed for a trip to the store. I promised oldest to make rice crispy treats, and on top of that, I just realized about half way through this post we're out of diapers. Urg.

By the way, I will be dropping in over at eBookLove in yahoo groups to promote a few books. So if you're around the yahoo area, be sure to drop in and say hi!

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Robot Chicken pOwns Me



Yes, I spelled that right: pOwns. I am being 733+ today and embracing my nerdiness.
I admit it. I *heart* Robot Chicken almost as much as I love BST and Heroes. How can I not stop and stare when this poor freaky creature comes on the screen? How can I turn my back when bizarre-ness is being transmitted into my living room like some weird alien code. This show, it's like road kill, I tell you. You don't want to look, but you have to!
All the freaky barbie doll stop motion people, and craziness... you have to look because your brain goes into "what the hell is going on?!" mode. Adult Swim on Cartoon Network has probably killed off more braincells than DDT. I know I am certainly fried...
Last night, I dropped by the TSR chat. I have to admit I didn't know a chat was going on until right before. I know, I know... I need to start checking the groups more frequently for info. I just get wrapped up in my own thing--I have my own circle of friends and rounds I do, and forget to look elsewhere for news like that. I did manage to get my website updated, and send off a few emails amidst the hustle and bustle. Chat, emails, and websites... Ah, the good things in life. ^_^
We had a brief power cut last night. Thank goodness it didn't last long. It's been rainy and muggy all week. If there is anything Louisiana has an abundance of, it is humidity. Yuck. And it shows today. My hair has that frizzy, dandelion thing going on. It looks like I've been riding in the jeep with the top down. Hopefully there's no more of that for a while.
Today at the Midnight Moon Cafe there is a Midnight Brew featuring author Lori Handeland! You don't want to miss this! it's an awesome interview telling about her books, writing, men, and more! She is also graciously giving away a copy of her book Midnight Moon--which is kind of hard to find, as it keeps selling out of bookstores--at least in my area! Hope you'll drop by and visit us!

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Gossip, Devils, and Chat



My devils are speaking to me again... They started chattering away late yesterday evening. What a relief! I want to finish my demon book before the end of the year. It's supposed to be novella length or longer, and I hate trying to write something beyond short story length when my characters are being stubborn. I'm so glad that dark cloud is lifting. Seems my latest bad boy is just playing hard to get.

Oy, and talk about a bad boy! I don't think I've ever written about a sexier, darker, or more dangerous alpha than this guy. I also managed to name him yesterday as well. Ha! I had been referring to him in the wip as MAIN GUY. *lol* I couldn't seem to think of what to name a fallen angel/demon without it sounding contrived or just plain ridiculous. Well I have it now. The perfect name. And for the time being I'm going to be a heifer and keep the world in suspence. That's just incase I decide my selection was momentary insanity and have to change it. No one will ever be the wiser. Heh. ^_^

Ooh! Last night's chat over at Coffee Time Romance completely rocked! There were both familiar and a few new faces that joined us, too. That's always exciting--meeting new people interested in paranormal romance. A special thanks to everyone who dropped in to show their support--you made the night fabulous! It was my first time chatting at CTR and I felt especially welcome. :-)

Congrats to downy59, who won a copy of Wicked Temptation. I will be sending that out to you this morning, so be on the lookout!

I better get to work now. Mini was having teething fits last night, so I didn't get to bed until 1 am. I need to get a few things completed before he demands a nap.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Blogger Hates Me

Karen Erickson left me the picture of this lovely fuzzy kittle beast on myspace.com, so I thought I'd make her my blog mascot for today--the kitty, I mean, not Karen! ^_^

Black cats seem fitting as the technology faery has been particularly harsh on me for the past two days. See, I live in the middle of nowhere, so when it rains the phonelines go all wonky. And since I am still on prehistoric dial up, my connection to the internet bites the dust. One of these days I swear I'll get DSL. Seriously. I've only been saying that now for what? Five years? lol

Anyway, tonight the authors of the Midnight Moon Cafe will be chatting over at Coffee Time Romance. That lineup is made up of Brandi Broughton, Cassandra Curtis, Tempest Knight, and me, Cora Zane. We'll be talking about our books and giving away lots of lovely prizes. You won't want to miss this!

On another front, I sat down to write about my demons this morning, and they are not speaking to me. It seems they are more tempestuous than vampires. *_* Moody, moody creatures... And the vampires only seem to want to talk to me in the middle of the night. Looks like it's time to meditate and break out the ritual candles.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Pass the Freaking Cookies!

Ho hum. I'm seriously fiending for chocolate right now. I would wrangle this poor, sweet, defenseless kitty to the ground for some Ferrero Rocher.

Actually, I've been chocolate fiending for a few days now. When hubby and I went grocery shopping over the weekend, I bought bag of Oreo cookies--my favorite! Once we were home, I put away the groceries, left the unopened bag on the counter, took Mini bear for a nap, and when I returned... over half of my cookies are gone.

Where are they, you ask? Where are my cookies? Why, they are digesting away in the bottomless pit I call my Oldest son. He ate almost an entire freaking bag of Oreos in 1 sitting. I swear it's true! And you know what's even more sad than being denied yummy chocolatey goodness? It's looking at your stringy, rail thin son and knowing if you ate that bag of cookies, you'd be walking around with a big ol' waffle butt!

Sometimes I swear there is no justice left in the world...

Ah, well, it's just cookies. I've been getting great news all day today, and I'm going to keep hoping for more. I'll just have to call hubby on his way home from work tonight and ask him nicely *nag* to bring more cookies--which I will thusly hide from the Teenage Locust (aka Oldest son) the minute I have the pack in my hand. ^_^

Now for an update on writing related things:

First things first: the question... I received a surprising amount of email over the weekend asking questions about my latest release, Wicked Temptation. Most who wrote to me wanted to know this: Does the "An Immortal Lovers Novella" printed at the bottom of the Wicked Temptation cover mean this is a series book?

Yes, it is a series book. In the beginning I wrote the book as a stand-alone title. I saw the potential for a series, but wasn't sure I wanted to do an additional vampire book. I was asked by my publisher to brand it as a series, so I did, and depending on how well the first book does, I will continue to write about the Acolytes and their vampire lovers...beginning with Anya's sister Eleni.

Now for the upcoming chat schedule...

Tomorrow night at 9-10pm EST/8-9pm CST the ladies of the Midnight Moon Cafe will be chatting over at Coffee Time Romance. We will be talking about our books and giving away some neat prizes. We hope to see you there for that!

This week's Midnight Brew will feature author Lori Handeland! This is an interview you will not want to miss! For more information about the interview and related giveaway, drop by the Midnight Moon Cafe.

That's it for now. Gotta get the house ready so I can dance with Mini boy. The Backyardigans are coming on soon! ~.^

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Two And A Half Months

There are approximately two and a half months left to write in 2006, and I hope to fill my calendar with at least one more book this year. Next month is National Novel Writing Month and I do believe I'm going to stop fighting the urge and get my creative groove on.

Last night, I woke up at 2 AM--my vampire characters were talking to me LOUDLY. I couldn't sleep they were chattering so! They suddenly had so much to say, I knew the only way to appease them would be to listen carefully. So I reached over, grabbed my spiral notebook off the nightstand, and started writing by the light of the digital clock.

One hour passed, then two... I put down my pen at four AM. Hubby and Mini boy were still asleep beside me. I closed the notebook, put it away, and feeling content, I went on to sleep.

This morning I was surprised by what I read. The notes are messy, but I managed page after page of dialogue, as well as two complete scenes. This is a book I had considered a while back, but put it off, not sure if I wanted to write it at all. Well, I woke up this morning feeling that drive again, and after reading the "transcripts" of my character's conversation, I feel it's definitely time to start working on another book. That book.

I have no idea what will come of this new story, whether the idea actually works as a plot, or if it will ever sell. I never know these things until I've written the last page of a manuscript, and even then, I'm never 100% positive. All I know for sure is that finally, finally the drained feeling that seemed to latch on to me after finished Wicked Temptation has lifted. The muses are talking to me again--and I'm so very glad!

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Dance With Me, Elmo!

Hurray for Saturday! Hubby is home, the boys are feeling spry, and it's pretty outside. Now that has the making of a good day. ^_^ We're going to do some shopping, and I think Oldest wants his daddy to take him out to the bike trails. If they do that, I'll probably stay home and catch up on this mountain of laundry that has accumulated.

Last night's chat over at Cobblestone Press went pretty well. No huge crowds, but folks did pop in here and there to ask questions and say congrats. It was pleasant and "homey" feeling. Can't ask for more than that! Also, congrats to Deb, who won a copy of Wicked Temptation. Woot! I hope you like the book.

That's about it for me. I need to go hop in the shower before I do anything else. Oh! Just one last thing... I'm going to be over at the Ciar Cullen chat group on and off throughout the day with the other ladies of the Midnight Moon Cafe. We'll be posting excerpts and promoting our books. I will also be giving away a copy of Wicked Temptation to a lucky poster, so I hope you'll drop by and say hello!

Friday, October 13, 2006

Release Day and More!

There is so much cool stuff going on today, I don't know quite where to begin! A new Midnight Brew author interview has gone up over at the Midnight Moon Cafe. This week's guest is Ayn Hunt. She an expert on ghostly phenomenon, as well as a gothic romance author. Her interview is full of fun ghostly information--it's to die for! Check it out and you may very well win a copy of her latest book!

While you're over at the MMC checking out Ayn's interview, if you haven't read them yet, there are two very hot erotic romances available for free download: Stroke It by Cassandra Curtis, and my own title Under a Midnight Moon. They're available in both .pdf and .lit formats. Aren't choices grand? ^_^ There are also free excerpts from Wicked Temptation, my erotic vampire romance that goes on sale today! I hope you'll check that out too!

CHAT ALERT! Tonight I'll be giving away a free copy of Wicked Temptation to one lucky reader. All you have to do is be at the Cobblestone Press chat tonight between 7-9 pm central standard time. I hope you'll drop by and chat with me!

Now, on to other things...

Did you know it's Friday the 13th? How cool is that! I am in super Halloween mode now. I'm going to buy the boys a cauldron of candy today, and a black sweat suit to paint up for Mini boy to wear as a costume. I imagine hubby will be driving them the rounds this year for candy. Woot! I told Oldest since some might think he's a bit to old to be begging candy door to door, maybe he should go as a ghost and wear a sheet over his head. ^_^ That way no one can tell how old he is. Ha! Maybe no one will notice he's about 5'8".

Tonight I'm thinking I'll go 0-1 with the pie baking thing. That's right! I'm back for more. I'm planning to buy the goodies to make a chocolate graveyard pie. Yummy! Graveyard pie has cream cheese, chocolate graham cracker crust, crushed chocolate cookies sprinkled on top, cherries, and absolutely no stinking sweet potatoes! Heh! I'm liking this idea even better by the minute. I'll let ya'll know how it turns out. Have a sparkly day! ^_^

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Woohoo! Nice buns!

Tomorrow is release day for Wicked Temptation! I'm so psyched! The more time I spend with that book, the more I love it. Or maybe I have just grown to love sexy vampires. Who knows? ^_^

I posted an exclusive excerpt from the book over at the Midnight Moon Cafe this morning. I hope it shows up well. Blogger has been giving me fits since yesterday, and with the weather acting all cattywompus here, it's making it tough to log in and stay online.

For those that are interested, I will be attending the Friday, October 13th release day chat over at Cobblestone Press. The chat typically runs from 7-9 pm central standard time, and sometime during those hours, I will be giving away a free copy of Wicked Temptation to one lucky reader.

Now on to other things... Yesterday evening was very trying. It's funny to think of it now in retrospect, but I still wonder how I managed to make it through without pulling all my hair out. First, my mom brought me this huge bag of sweet potatoes. Hmm. Thanks, mom. You only cooked and cleaned for me for what? 15 years of my youth? You know I hate sweet potatoes! *rofl* In fact, everyone in my household hates them. Who am I supposed to feed them too? Well, I decided I'd try to trick the boys into eating them by baking them into pies. Okay. I called hubby on his way home from work, and told him to bring me two pie crusts from the store. I then set about making sweet potato pie... something I've never done before in my life.

I got the recipe online, which was easy enough. I baked two pies that turned out so damn gorgeous, and smelled so yummy I was actually tempted to try one. So I did. I took a fork, and dipped it in the pie. It was great! And then... the aftertaste!!

Bree-ack, snort, choke! The pie was FINE. The eggs I apparently used to make the pie WERE NOT! Thank goodness I tried the pie first. What would my kids have thought of me trying to pass that off to them? So basically, I spent an hour and a half baking pies for the dogs last night. Hm.

Another amusing things that happened last night: hubby thought it would be cute to bring Mini a tiny bucket of plastic animals. Just a little cheap thing he picked up from the gas station. And I do mean cheap. The label on top the bucket reads: "THE WORLD OF ANIMAL--Lovely and fun toys these are what you want!" ROFL! I saved the sticker and put in on my notebook.

Now for these cursed animal(s)...

You do not give toddlers tiny objects like jacks, or plastic, foot cutting animals and not expect some kind of recourse. My dining room became an almost instantaneous animal mine field. My hubby and Oldest never watch where they are going, so of course, they are complaining ten minutes later because they've managed to lodge a hyena between their toes! Ha! *karma* Well, I guess that makes me feel a little less dumb because of my lack of pie baking skills. Heh! ^_^ So there you have it. Some of my family's latest adventures!

Now that I've got all my blogging goofiness out of the way for this morning, it's time for the grand finale... this one's a fun one, so hold on to your hats!

I've been tagged by the fantastical, chicken-punting Wonderwoman Zinnia Hope!


Here are my answers: *drumroll, please!*

1) One book that changed your life: J.D. Salinger's A Catcher in the Rye. I put off reading it until I was an adult, and I regret I didn't experience it sooner.

2) One book that you’d read more than once: Watership Down, by Richard Adams. Hazel-Rah rocks my socks. I cried at the end. A wonderful book!

3) One book you’d want on a deserted island: A blank journal with endless pages.

4) One book that made you laugh: Derek's Bane, by Mary Janice Davidson. Her Wyndham Werewolves are a treat!


5) One book that made you cry: Far too many have made me cry; however, the one that sticks out in my mind is The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle. It's one of the most beautiful books I've ever read.

6) One book you wish you’d written: The Dawn Star, by Stobie Piel. A beautiful, futuristic love story. Her characters are both haunting and memorable.

7) One book you wish had never been written: The book my grandmother wrote almost 15 years ago. It was about her life from her years growing up to after my grandfather died. It caused a major rift in the family that still has not quite healed.

8) One book you're currently reading: Dark Celebration, by Christine Feehan. Mmm, Carpathians... Must. Read. Feehan.

10) Tag five people: Alllllrighty, then! I'll tag Silma Pagan, Cassandra Curtis, Tara M. Leigh, Karen Ericksen, and Bella Tyler. Muahahahaha! *evil grin*


That's all for now! So go read my excerpt!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Under A Midnight Moon--A Free Erotic Romance Ebook!

What happens when two Werekind packs merge into one?

Betsey has been listening to her friends complain about the current male to female ratio ever since the new pack leader took over. Betsey can only shake her head and listen. What's to complain about? That Silver is overrun with motorcycles, or that there are now more sexy single males hanging around town? They must be kidding! After the way her recent ex-boyfriend treated her, the arrival of a new batch of eligible males seems just the kind of shot in the arm the pack needs. It's high time the local boys were forced to up their game in the quest to win a mate. After all, a little healthy competition never hurt anyone. Right?


Under A Midnight Moon is AVAILABLE NOW as a free download through the Midnight Moon Cafe! You can choose between .lit and .pdf formats!

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Coming Out of the Writing Cave

Woot! I just finished my free erotic werewolf story and sent it off to be formatted. The ebook is called Under A Midnight Moon, and should be appearing over at the Midnight Moon Cafe very soon. *dance, dance* I intended to finish it yesterday, but Mini just wasn't having it. He was demanding mommy time and I gave in. :)

I planned to have a bit of a writing vacation after I finished the freebie, but I must be a masochist or something... I signed up to participate in NaNoWriMo this November. That's National Novel writing month, and the goal is to write a 50k story/novel/whatever in a month's time. I must be nuts!

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Wicked Temptation Has A Cover!

Woot! I got my cover for Wicked Temptation today. Isn't it beautiful? The talented Anne Caine designed it. It thoroughly captures the mood of my book--I'm pleased as punch! The ebook itself is coming out next week on Friday, October 13th, so I've been trying to pick a few snazzy never-before posted excerpts to share here, and over at the Midnight Moon Cafe. So if you're interested in that, keep checking back. In the meantime, there are excerpts and blurbs for Wicked Temptation up atthe Cora Zane website.

I spent almost every waking moment of Friday and several hours today working on my upcoming freebie. I hope I can finish it by tomorrow. I still have one and a half scenes left to write, and they are resisting my direction. *sigh* Werewolves can be temperamental like that at times...

Tomorrow is grocery shopping day, and that can't be avoided, so I better get back to work. I need to get as much completed as possible while I have hubby at hand. *poor babysitting hubby* ^_^

Friday, October 06, 2006

Hey Mister, Got Some Candy?

Squeee!! I found out this afternoon that I have a 5/HOT rating coming up for Bonding Experience over at JERR! It will be out in the next newsletter issue. I read that email and did the happy chicken dance despite PMS, sneezing fits, sleeping baby in my lap, and all that. ^_^

I also have a fantastic new review up for Bonding Experience over at Joyfully Reviewed! *dance, dance*

I do feel much better today. My blurb for Wicked Temptation went up, my cover is in the works, I managed to get 7 pages written on my wip today... Oh, and Alkaseltzer Cold Plus kicks big, bad cold booty! Those are all good reasons to feel sparkly. As for the cold though, that means extra house cleaning. I'd do almost anything to keep from giving the ick to Mini bear and Oldest. We'll have the mess circulating through the house all winter if either of those two catch it.

How about that pumpkin picture, huh? Reminds me of myself after a Halloween frat party I went to many, many, many years ago. That was the one and ONLY hangover I've ever had in my life. Oy vey. Frat party broke me from any future I might've had as a binge drinker. *rofl* I bet I looked just as stellar as Mr. Pumpkin there...only I was heaving in the bushes, rock star that I am. ^_^

The area fair is in town, and I'm hoping we can take the boys tomorrow night. But we might put it off because there is a snazzy Celtic Festival going on at the zoo. I'd like to take the boys to that if at all possible, particularly Oldest. I think it would be a good infusion of his own culture. I half wonder sometime if he thinks I found him under a rock.

Well, I'm off to prepare candles, and wait for the males to return from the thrill of the hunt. *pizza* There's a Cobblestone Press chat going on tonight from 7-9 pm Central standard time if anyone's interested. Click HERE for a direct link!

Thursday, October 05, 2006

What's In a Thursday?

First it's PMS, now I think I'm coming down with something. This morning I woke up with a runny nose and I've been sneezing right and left. I feel run down, like I could just sleep and sleep. Earlier in the day I called hubby and told him he might want to push for Friday off because I have writing to do, and I'm not sure my muses can last with Mini hanging on my legs and a cold coming on. When hubby calls in about thirty minutes, I should know one way or another. Whatever the outcome, I'm telling him to bring home chips and guacamole. I intend to take some vitamin C and veg out in front of the tv later on tonight. Anyone who gets in my way is TOAST.

On a brighter note, my mother called to talk to me about her burial plans. Yep, just what I need to hear when I'm not feeling well. I told her I didn't care what happens to me when that time comes, I am not against burial or cremation. After all, I'm not going to know the difference. I have told hubby on several occasions to do whatever we can afford at the time. My mother on the otherhand squawked like a chicken when I said the dreaded "c" word. She is staunchly against it. I have no idea why, and I'm not about to argue it with her. *sigh*

Some good news is I finished reading the ARC I've been putting off, and sent out the written review to my new review editor. *joy* The book turned out better than I thought it would. I would rather have read the book from the bad guy's perspective, though. I found him far more compelling that the hero. I did however enjoy the book, would certainly read that particular author again, and so I gave it a well deserved, shiny review.

Speaking of reviews, there has been some debate about them in the Rants and Raves section over in RD. I tend to fall in line with other published author's views regarding the matter. I'd be lying if I said I don't appreciate a good review. I do. And just like anything else, I have my favorite review sites, and those I don't frequent so much. The point is I do read my reviews, and the harsh ones can hurt--both emotionally and financially. Particularly when you take into consideration those reviews may or may not influence other people, and that ARCs are given out for free. With my first book, I gave out more copies than I sold, and have since slacked off of giving as many ARCs away to review sites and as prizes because of that very reason. Too, I think by way of promotion, people like tangible gifts like jewelry and candles better anyway. ^_^

That is also why I especially appreciate review sites like Ellis Reviews, and other places like it. They may not get as much notice, but they buy the books they are interested in, in order to review them. They get an extra special thumbs-up from me.

Enough soul sharing for me today. I'm stepping off my soap box. There are far more interesting things to read about. Have you checked out the awesome interview with L. Rosario over at the Midnight Moon Cafe? If you haven't read it yet, you should. You're missing out!

Final note: The painting is Mikhail Vrubel's The Seated Demon. Not too shabby. Not too shabby at all.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Bonding Experience Receives 4 Blue Ribbons!

Woot! I have a new review up over at Romance Junkies!

With BONDING EXPERIENCE, Cora Zane has given readers an exciting and highly erotic paranormal romance short story that can be devoured in one setting. This book had just the right amount of heat, passion, and intrigue to quickly raise my body temperature to a boiling point. The chemistry between Claire and Luke is deep and intense. And, their sexual encounters will have you squirming in your seat. Luke is a sensual werewolf with a hunger for Claire that swiftly consumes them both. What a scrumptious Alpha male! It wasn’t before long that Claire’s (and mine) soul was set on fire by Luke’s passion. I was hooked from page one until the very end. This is my first time experiencing the writings of Cora Zane and I can say without a doubt, it will not be my last.

By Romance Junkies Reviewer: Contessa
To Read the full review, click HERE


*dance, dance* *shimmy, shimmy* *pom pom swish* *booty wiggle*

Epiphany!

First thing this morning I found an email in my inbox telling me Wicked Temptation has a new release date: Friday, October 13th! How cool is that? A Friday the 13th release date! ^_^

I don't have a cover yet for W/T, but I should in the next few days. I'll be sure to post it as soon as it's in. I can barely wait! By the way, the first chapter of Wicked Temptation is posted over at the Cora Zane website in the Books section. Want an idea of how Wicked Temptation is going to read? Head on over there--it's worth a look!

Now on to other things... I've been quite busy lately. I'm working on not one, but two stories at one time--something I usually never do. And in truth, both of them are not the main story I need to be working on--that's the one where I feel least inspired. (Of course.) It's the law of the universe, I tell you.

Then yesterday as I went to take a nap with Mini, I had an epiphany. Yes, really! About the uninspired story, too! I guess there's something to this sleep deprivation thing after all. Anyway, before my eyes slipped shut, I reached for my notebook and wrote pages and pages of notes for my demon story. It's a little different than the one I originally proposed, but all the elements still fit. The characters are still there, plus an additional one. The only thing that has really changed is the setting and the dynamics. There was something missing from the other version I was writing. It felt like the "story balance" was all wrong. Well, apparently that was the case. Once I turned a few things around, such as making the heroine the focal character, everything sort of fell into place. Woot! I'm actually looking forward to this project now, instead of dreading it. *dance, dance*

Today I'll be working all day on my freebie for the MMC. My goal is to have everything together as one big piece by tomorrow. As of right now, I have huge chunks of story written, but they are not threaded together. Ho hum.

One last thing before I get to work! Tomorrow the Midnight Moon Cafe will have a new Midnight Brew. This one will feature a tasty interview with paranormal romance author L. Rosario. Love books about sexy vampires? You won't want to miss this showcase!

That's it for me this morning, folks. I'm off to go write about my sexy hot werewolves while Mini is in a good mood. ^_^

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Keep 'Em In The Dark For Life

I wrote on my freebie fiction last night until it became too difficult to type with Mini stretched out across my lap. He was rambunctious and fussy all night, and I ended up rocking and holding him for the most part of it.

It was the only way he'd sleep. So while he slept, I gnashed my teeth, spit and snarled wanting to sleep myself, and thought I might lose my eyesight due to all the damn infomercials on the TV. Is it really necessary to have 20 channels devoted to the sluts of Girls Gone Wild?

Has anyone else noticed that something like 75% - 85% of those girls on there all look the freaking same? The producers of that smut chain didn't actually go out and find that many stupid girls. They secretly invented the first fully-functioning human cloning machine.

On top of that, PMS slammed into me sometime around 10 o'clock last night. I have a sunny disposition most of the time, but give me PMS, no sleep, and an inescapable marathon of stupidity on television and my mutant bitch factor kicks in. There is only so much a woman can take.

Mini finally gave up trying to sleep around 3 AM. We relocated to the dining room just shortly before hubby had to get up. I fixed a bottle for him and let him run rampant. If he banged pans, woke the dead, pissed off the neighbors I didn't really care.

Mini apparently did none of those things, however. When hubby got out of bed and came into the den to watch the news and get ready for work, he was all sunshine and smiles. *viscious bitch snarl* I crawled into a hole in the den, warned anyone away who came near, and let Mini tag his daddy around the house until it was time for him to leave at 4. The baby was yawning by that time. I took him to bed shortly thereafter, and finally, finally got a few hours of undisturbed sleep.

Now I'm back to square one. I feel drained, but I need to write. I sat and stared at the computer for over an hour this morning, seeing the words but not knowing what the hell I was supposed to do with them. Grrrreat! I think today when Mini takes his nap, I better take one with him. In the meantime, I'm gonna go pour another cup of coffee. This has the makings for a looooong day.


Monday, October 02, 2006

Tasty Tidbits

I'm happy to report that I was excused from jury duty earlier today. The case would have required the jurists to be sequestered for 5 to 7 days. There's no way I could do that. Oldest Offspring would be fine, but there would be no one to watch Mini for that amount of time. My parents aren't capable of handling him for more than 2 or 3 hours at the most, and hubby has to work. We can't afford him not too. I told all this to the judge and he excused me right away.

I'm relieved because I don't think I could deal with a trial that could lead to the death penalty. About that issue, I'm definitely on the fence. I'll leave it to the experts, thanks a bunch!

Back home, I answered a few emails and got back to writing. I have two stories I'm working on simultaneously because they tie in rather closely. One will be for free, the other I'm not sure what I'll do with it at this point. I suppose I'll worry about that when the time comes for it. I set about burning an orange candle for creativity, turned the Backyardigans on for Mini, and settled into my favorite writing chair. ^_^ Ah, now that's what it's all about...



Speaking of stories and writing, there is a Trick or Treat fiction download now available over at the Midnight Moon Cafe! Stroke It, an erotic paranormal story by the super fantabulous Cassandra Curtis is featured--so go and download your copy right now! It's completely free!

While you're over there, be sure to check out that smoking HOT COVER. A special shout out to Silma is in order for that sumptuous cover art.


All them witches eat many sandwiches, and keep a black cat in their pointy hat... ^_^

Ho Hum, Books, and Stuff

I'm getting ready for jury duty. *grumble, grumble* My mom will have to drive me up there, and sit with the baby. Oh, that should be interesting. She fears he will fall apart if he starts to cry. She nearly has a panic attack. I have told her it's what babies and toddlers do, but stil she doesn't listen. I love my mother, don't get me wrong, but sometimes after seeing her with my kids, I truly believe it's a miracle I survived to adulthood. *ROFL*

On another note, I have gotten a string of emails from a folks saying they can't or had trouble finding Bonding Experience on the Cobblestone Press page. Never fear! It is there, it's just been moved from the recently released page, and hasn't made it over to the Shifters page yet. Here is a direct link: Bonding Experience.

I have also linked up the bookcovers to the right, so if you know anyone who needs the link, you can direct them to my blog.

Trick or Treat Party at the Midnight Moon Cafe!

The entire month of October is one big, long party at the Midnight Moon Cafe! Games, prizes, excerpts and Interviews with some of today’s top paranormal romance authors, and paranormal experts.

The Bloody Marys are on the house. We might even have a visit from a real vampire, or a werewolf or two! Costume optional, of course! ;)

So come one and come all to the greatest little party on the cyberblock!
Runs October 1-31.

Oh, and BYOBB (Bring Your Own Blood Bag)! No nibblers please–unless you’re a sexy he-vamp. Cackle, Cackle!

~~Cassandra


Also, be sure to check out the featured interview with fellow Midnight Mooner, Tempest Knight, over at The Romance Studio!