Thursday, June 30, 2011

Notes And More Notes

The new plot is coming together. I've been working on it for the past few days, and I'm finally able to pinpoint the overall story goal for the protagonist. I'm now building up the opposition, and ironing out the character's values and ambitions. Tomorrow I'll probably start filling in GMC charts for the main characters. Oh, and on top of this, I have a working title. For blogging purposes, I'll call it "DD". Exciting, no?

If you missed the RWA National conference Harlequin spotlight, I've retweeted all the juicy bits here: http://twitter.com/#!/corazane 

If you scroll down past the Harlequin spotlight retweets, you'll find a bunch of info from the Carina Press spotlight, and a few things from Avon. Be sure to check that out.

Today, over at Romance Divas Ellora's Cave editors Jillian Bell and Carrie Jackson are taking pitches. You must be registered at Romance Divas to use the forum. (I have no idea if the registration is currently open.) If you're a member, you can go directly to the Not Going to Conference Conference thread by clicking here: http://forums.romancedivas.com/index.php?showforum=110 . 


In the same area of the Romance Diva's forum, editor Rhonda Penders is talking about what The Wild Rose Press is looking for by way of submissions. I believe she is also taking questions. If you've been interested in writing for TWRP, this is a good opportunity to get a feel for the company.

All Romance E-books is currently hosting a Just One Bite story contest. The rules, submission guidelines, and the prizes up for grabs are listed here: http://www.allromanceebooks.com/submissions_justonebite.html  This is a really good way to get your name out there, so if you're looking to get published, I'd give it a go!

That's all I've got for now. I better do what I said I was gonna do twenty minutes ago - haul Oldest over to the Wolf Stop to get gas for the lawnmower. Ah, the joys of summer.  Later, everyone! ^_^

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Prospects and Projects

Whew! What a long day! I've been working on the new book for several hours, and I'm taking a quick break to grab a bite to eat, make some juice...and while I was hustling MiniBear off to bed, I remembered that I hadn't blogged since Monday.

I've been book focused most of the day. If you're not on Twitter, you should be. The RWA National Conference is going on right now in NYC, and many of the people who are in attendance also tweet from the publisher spotlights. I sat through both the Avon and Carina Press tweetfest on Twitter earlier today. Totally worth the time of reading and fielding tweets. I retweeted as much of it as I could, so I can go back and look at my profile to find the information later. If you want to read through what I saved, you can visit my twitter profile here: http://twitter.com/#!/corazane Also, you can look up RWA tweets by searching for #RWA11.

Well, back to work. The house is quiet and I have a few plot tangles on paper to fix before I can move on to the next bit of pre-writing. What can I say? My work is never done. :P

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Just a Little Bit Longer

So, here I am, back in the writing cave again. I started working on a new story for EC Monday morning, and ooh la la, I have such a huge crush on the hero. I suppose I should take that as a good sign, right? 

I hope to have the rough draft of this book written by the end of July, mid-August at the very latest, and written "right". In other words, I'm trying to work with this thing so it doesn't need a ton of revisions.

Also, my fantasy romance turned YA novel is currently in pieces, and I have this insane chart showing all the different variables and pinpoints where things must change to make this book suitable for the intended audience. I'm still reading and researching the genre while working, but mainly I want to make sure my GMC is in order. Because, yo, I only want to have to rewrite this book once.

So there it is, my summer plans. Now that Wicked Obsession is out of the way, those two books are on my hot list to write and shove out the door. Because there is this story growing that I really want to tell, and the characters are whispering to me every time, I start to work on something else. Yep. One of those stories. And I want to be free to work on it by fall. I guess we'll have to wait and see.

In the next few days, the look of my main website will be changing. I reworked it so that it'll be easier to update, and hopefully easier for my readers to find what they're looking for. Just for the sake of saying so, this blog won't be changing. Since Stars Will Cry is a personal blog and all that, I don't really mind if it doesn't match the site. The website has a built in blog over there, and I'll probably use it for topical things, writerly things, and probably publishing updates. It's sort of a have my cake and eat it to scenario. Something like that, anyway. This blog will be linked up through the new site, but only as an "additional" blog site.

And there you have it. The latest. Tomorrow I have a lot of stuff to work through, so I better call it a night. *waves*

Saturday, June 25, 2011

New Ideas Brewing


Ack! I've been trying to post this afternoon but my net connection keeps crapping out on me. Anyway, I've having fits and panic attacks since yesterday. So much came down on me all at once. The internet was out for most of the day, and hubby had to call the ISP and have them reset the connection...or some such thing. Then we got a call that his dad was rushed back to Walter Reed by ambulance. He's stable, but in the hospital still, and we have no idea when they plan to release him. IF they plan to release him. Hubby is flying out to DC in 2 weeks. It's the soonest we could get him a guest room at the veteran's home.

Also, yesterday was my release day for Wicked Obsession. This week's books went up a bit late on the site, so I was kinda sweating over that, too, but it's all fixed now. Whew! That's one less worry off my plate. Today I'm brainstorming and compiling notes. There's this one story idea that I'm really excited about, but I haven't plotted it far enough yet to start writing. Soon, though. Very soon.

Wicked Obsession Available at Cobblestone Press

Woot! It's finally here. Wicked Obsession is now available at Cobblestone Press.

About the book

After a tumultuous recovery from Biter’s Addiction, Eleni Audridov knows one misstep may lead the vampire council to blot her disgraced bloodline from the Book of Acolytes. Sent to live with a mal vampire in southern France, she hopes to start her life over, free of her past sins.
Scarred, both physically and emotionally, Julian Sévigné reluctantly accepts Eleni as his duty-bound lover. Despite his resistance to her charms, passion soon flares between them. He never dreamed his obsession with her would rouse the sleeping demons of his past. Will jealousy and secrets he thought long buried tear them apart?
 
If you tried to buy my book yesterday, but couldn't find it on the site, I'm terribly sorry about that! There was a slight delay with the releases coming out this week, but the good folks over at Cobblestone fixed it as quickly as possible.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Cover Art for Wicked Obsession

Woot! New cover art has arrived! Wicked Obsession will be available for purchase this Friday at Cobblestone Press. I can barely believe the time has slipped by this fast. Just a few short months ago I was in the plotting stages of this book. Now the release is coming up. And no doubt about it, I'm jazzed with the cover. It perfectly fits the book. Eleni and Julian make the perfect cover couple.  Le sigh. :*)

The cover art makes good for what was an otherwise tough day. It stormed early on, and while we really needed the rain, I'm not sure a power outage was the ideal trade off. We were without lights from 9:30 am to after 3pm. For us, no lights = no internet and no AC. Positively uncivilized, eh?

The guys did very well during the outage, but around 1pm, I took Mini to my mom's to wait it out the last of it, and while he was over there, mom decided to let him stay the night.

I came back home sans kiddo and hung out with Cass for a little while so we could fix some scripting issues and talk about tarot and books and all that jazzy stuff. Good times... We also put up posters for Wicked Obsession in our promo booths in SL. So a little visiting, a little busy work.

Tomorrow, after I pick up Mini, I'll be back home, and back to work on a new book. That's the way of it, I guess. Just when you get one project finished, it's time to begin again. ;o)

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day & Lazing Around


Happy Father's Day to all the awesome dads out there! I gave the hubby a card, and an Amazon gift card - which he spent five minutes after receiving, lol - and the boys got him a card too. I talked to my dad on the phone this morning for a few minutes. He and my mother were getting ready for church. They're having a Father's Day dinner there, so this afternoon, once they're back home, I'm going to drive over for a visit to take dad his card and gift.

So, it's pretty much going to be a lazy day for us. I've got a corned beef in the crock pot, and tonight I'm going to cook some cabbage and mashed potatoes to go with it. It's been so hot lately, I'm reluctant to cook in the house unless it's in the crock pot. Dad was telling me it was 102 on his porch yesterday - there's a big themometer hanging out there.

I told him not to sit out there smoldering in the Louisiana heat to the point it makes him ill. Get inside and bask under the central AC with mom. He has a spritzer bottle out there and a fan to keep cool out there, but still... I hate to think of my dad as elderly, but the heat ain't no joke. Every year in Louisiana there are elderly people, most of them very poor, who die from the heat. We've participated in the fan drives - usually advertised on the local TV stations. They'll gather fans to take around to the elderly folks who are in need. This year it seems especially hot and dry. We've had a burn ban going on for about three weeks now. The grass in our backyard is dead and brittle. It crunches under your feet when you walk on it. Anyway, that's living in the south for ya.

Last night I began working on my new project for Ellora's Cave. I've been itching to write something for their Shivers Line since I first heard about it. I'm so absolutely jazzed about Shivers. Now that I'm free to get a new project going, I'm working on something tailored to the line. I have a story written, but after checking out the other books they have up, I'm not sure the completed story would be suitable and I'm not sure if it can be rearranged to fit. So, instead of pulling my hair out over it, I'm doing something entirely new and geared specifically toward the line. Very exciting!

The guys are giving me the stink eye (yep, just like that) so I better shut down the comp and find my shoes. We're going to take a quick trip up to the store. I want to pick up a bag of ice, and I think hubby must have something in mind he wants up there. No idea what, but anytime he's itching to go shopping that's usually the case. To all the awesome dads out there, Happy Father's Day. And to all the moms...I hope your day is peaceful. Hehehe! ^_~

Saturday, June 18, 2011

New Booth at Bookstacks in Awen :: Second Life

Sorry for the foggy picture! If you're in Second Life, I have a new booth at the Book Faire in Awen (Bookstacks), right next door to the Midnight Moon Cafe.

Second Life users: You can log in directly to the Boostacks Pub (Awen Region) by typing Awen into the location drop-down bar before logging in. Or you can search inworld for Bookstacks. If you have Second Life running, you can click this SLurl to take you to the Midnight Moon Cafe inworld: http://slurl.com/secondlife/Awen/196/228/22

If you touch the poster, you should receive an excerpt and goodies available for inworld use. The excerpt is for Wave Rider, a contemporary erotica available through Cobblestone Press - a hot story perfect for summer reading!

http://cobblestone-press.com/catalog/books/waverider.htm

About Wave Rider:
Sunny Richards' vacation at an exclusive Bonaire resort takes an adventurous turn when she meets a sexy Venezuelan surfer staying in one of the waterfront chalets next door.

After an erotic interlude on the beach, he invites her to his suite where he introduces her to his equally handsome friend, Matteo. The three spend a scorching hot evening together riding wave after wave of pleasure. It's a sexy summer vacation Sunny will never forget.

Wave Rider is an erotica short story for readers 18 and older. This title contains explicit language, graphic sex, & ménage.

Cool things to note: Bookstacks is a quiet, dedicated community of readers located in the Awen region. If you explore the Book Faire, you'll find a booth for a few of my other titles, as well as book booths for my partner in crime, Cassandra Curtis. Next door to the Book Faire, we have several sitting areas at the Midnight Moon Cafe and a library of our books with excerpts. There is also a free wishing well, a picnic area, a graveyard and dance area with sitting places for reading or relaxing inworld. Also, there is the main pub for Bookstacks, which has tons of seating areas. And there is a castle with seating areas for horror readers and fans of Emerian Rich. Drop by the island and check it out!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Wicked Obsession, among other things

Woot! I just wrapped up edits for Wicked Obsession. The book will be available through Cobblestone Press on June 24th.

I'll be posting more about the book once I have the cover. I don't have the official blurb, and it's not on the website yet, so I'm posting the unedited teaser blurb so anyone interested can take a sneak peak.

About Wicked Obsession:

After a tumultuous recovery from Biter's Addiction, Eleni Audridov knows one misstep may lead the vampire council to blot her disgraced bloodline from the Book of Acolytes. Sent to live with a mal vampire in southern France, she hopes to start her life over, free of her past sins.

Scarred, both physically and emotionally, Julian Sevigne reluctantly accepts Eleni as his duty-bound lover. Despite his resistance to her charms, passion soon flares between them. He never dreamed his obsession with her would rouse the sleeping demons of his past. Will jealousy and secrets he thought long buried tear them apart?

Wicked Obsession will be my first published novel, and it is the sequel to the award-winning novella, Wicked Temptation. Both books are through Cobblestone Press.

Onto other writerly goings-on for me, July 14th, I'll be at Coffeetime Romance talking about Wicked Obsession, and I'll be giving away a copy of Connection, my cyber android vampire story. Haha! I just love saying that. Cyber android vampires. Brings a tear to my eye. I love that little story, and I hope you'll drop by to visit me over there. A lot of authors, fourteen or fifteen, will be doing promo and giveaways that day, so it's a good opportunity to look a some great new releases coming out, and maybe win yourself a brand-spanking new ebook! I'll post more details as the event draws closer.

Now that I've wrapped up Wicked Obsession, I've been going through my notes this morning. Soon, I'll plotting out my next novel. Like I've said, I plan to use the First Draft in 30 Days method, and of course, I'll be charting the GMC of all my characters during pre-writing. So...the cycle starts again!

I do hope to turn out a short story before I take off into this longer piece. Something fun and sexy. I may make that my goal for the weekend - to just write something short and fun. We'll see what developes.

That's all the blogging stuff I got for now. Today is an errands day for me, so I better get crackin'. (Seriously, crackin' and not Kraken!) I still have to run to the grocery store, balance my checkbook, bathe the Sassie beast, and fold a mountain of laundry. You know. All the finer things in life. ;o)

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Summer Conference, Navy Boy, & Lotsa Stuff


There's been so much going on...where to start? Mini lost a baby tooth on Thursday. He's officially a snagglepuss, since it was a front tooth - the left one if I remember correctly.

Then on Friday, Oldest officially became a Navy guy. He scored a 93 on the ASVAB, and went through MEPs. He told me about the score and I was so thrilled for him. That's better than his old score. I think I must've called everyone in the family to let them know the good news. Then Friday afternoon, he called again to let me know he's going into the meteorology/oceanography program. I'm so very, very proud of my baby boy! :*)

Today I attended the Summer Writing Workshop at Bossier Parish Community College. The keynote speaker was Debra Dixon, who gave her awesome Goal Motivation Conflict workshop. Once the main workshop was over, we had a short lunch break then moved over to the G building for the workshop tracks. There were three workshops going on at a time, so you had to choose. I had a hard time picking some of the workshops. There were three others I really, really wish I could've taken. I ended up sitting in on Agenting 101, which was given by Michelle Grajkowski of Three Seas Literary Agency. After that I took a workshop on Bringing Your Characters to Life, given by Shelia Goss. I took about four pages of notes on the character workshop, and plan to try some of her methods when I go to put together my next book.

The E-Publishing Basics workshop was one of the last of the day. I was pleased with the turnout. I believe we had 17. I know I only had one worksheet left, so, that was pretty good. Keri Ford and I went over the worksheets, and talked about e-publishing and answered attendees questions. I think it went very well. One lady even stopped me in the bathroom to tell me it was a good workshop. ^_^

After the workshops, I walked over to the F building for the panel - the last event before the book signings. The panel members were Michelle Grajkowski, Debra Dixon, and authors Janet Mullony and Kerrilyn Sparks. They answered questions from the attendees - great panel, and overall a very nice conference. I'd go again in a heartbeat.

I left during the booksignings since I was facing a long drive home. Lemme tell ya, I am exhausted! First thing home... off with the shoes and on with the pajamas!  I'm now relaxing a bit before moving off to the living room to watch a movie. Tomorrow morning, I'll be tackling my final round of edits for Wicked Obsession.

I think it's safe to say, I'm having an eventful weekend. ;o)

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

A Little Bit Closer

I have one more round to go on my edits and I'll be finished with Wicked Obsession. My editor has been a real peach, and I appreciate her time and patience. She's made this a truly painless experience. It's always a plus when you work on a project with someone who is on the same page as you are, and you simply mesh well. I really can't brag on her enough. We've worked very well together, and on a very tight deadline (less than a month!) to boot.

I'm brainstorming the horror erotica I wanted to do earlier in the year, but got too wrapped up in other things. Once the workshop is over this weekend, I'll be back to drafting. I'm going to do the First Draft in 30 Days method again, since it seemed to work well for me this last time. It helped me put together Wicked Obsession on a very tight time frame. If I can do it without making myself crazy, I'd like to complete another full novel this year, and possibly a novella or short story. We'll see.

I'd hoped to enter this year's Brava contest as well, but they've decided not to allow epublished authors to enter, so that's out for me. If you're unpublished, the Brava contest is a fantastic opportunity to get your work in front of some good people. You can find out more about it by clicking here. The deadline is August 15, 2011.

Tomorrow, Oldest is off to MEPs again and will be taking his ASVAB. He'll be gone for two days. I'm nervous for him, but at the same time I'm relieved I don't have to drive him to Arkansas. At this point, I don't know where I'd find the time to drive him even if I had to. Still, I wish one of us could've gone with him. After big boy is gone tomorrow, I have to run errands. Oh, and I have to buy a can opener before I drive myself bonkers. Ours fell apart on hubby a couple of nights ago, and I caught myself going into into the kitchen twice yesterday to make tuna fish, but alas...no can opener. On Thursday and Friday I'll  be concentrating on getting everything I need set for the Saturday workshops. I still need to get my swag together, and...oh, I better make sure I have enough ink to make printouts.

Once the workshops are over, I'm going to take a few days off to get my bearings again before the promo frenzy starts, and I have to kick off working on this new book. Whew! It's shaping up to be a busy summer!

Monday, June 06, 2011

Got Me All Tied Up


  

Round one of the Wicked Obsession edits are finished. I turned them in at around 3 am on Sunday morning. While waiting on round two of the edits to come in, I've been organizing notes to send to my workshop partner for the upcoming Summer Writing Conference hosted by my local RWA Chapter - NOLAStars. There is a schedule of events listed on the www.nolastars.com site. Check it out if you're around the Shreveport/Bossier area, or willing to drive the distance.

Today I'm back to brainstorming on the new short story. I hope to pull together enough information this week to start writing it the Monday after the SWC. We'll see how hectic it gets. Ideally I'd like to have the rough draft knocked out no later than the 1st week in July. That will give me plenty of time to make any necessary revisions before submission. Anyone else about to kick off a new project?

That's all that's happening around here...except for maybe kids, dog duty, and too much dang laundry. Yesterday, while working on the workshop notes, a memory drifted in from no where. I remembered being 14, thin, tan, and excited about summer because there was actually a break involved in summer break. We had a pool back then, and lived in a very small community. When we weren't at the mall or at the movies, my friends and I were hanging out at the pool. Man, those were the days. Now, summer is about not having to get up at 6 am...because I put in 14 hours on a project and went to bed at the crack of dawn. lol Ah, adulthood and all it's responsibilites...

Friday, June 03, 2011

The Friday Skinny


My first post on the new computer! I figured out that my new out of the box Acer Aspire desktop computer has no network wireless adapter, so once I stopped swearing, I took a drive up to Wally World and bought a cheap USB version. I installed everything, and voila! I have internets! *dance, dance, much rejoicing*

First things first...the billion updates and registrations that swamp you with a new computer. Oy vey. I got through that, downloaded itunes, tweaked and added new haunts, and I  feel like I've finally settled in. Whew! Tough work. After all that, I met up with Cassandra Sharktooth Curtis in Second Life and we went shopping for a rug for the new Midnight Moon Cafe branch on Witch Island. I love that sim. I've been visiting that area since I joined SL, so it's pretty sweet to have a rental there.

We also went looking for a vampire sim with good traffic to put up a book kiosk for my vampire titles. I'd like to get one over in the Transylvania sim, but there never seem to be any rentals open. Boo hoo. I guess I'll have to keep checking back. At any rate, that's the chase. Trying to track down my target audience so I can put up some book posters.

Anyway, I met my editor for the vamp novel this morning, so I'm thrilled about that. While waiting for the first pass, I'm gathering my notes together for the summer workshop, which is happening the 11th. If you're in the Shreveport/Bossier City area of LA, or are simply in the mood for a great summer mini conference and willing to travel, visit www.nolastars.com and take a peek.

We have some awesome folks coming to talk books, craft, screenwriting, and agenting 101. Debra Dixon is our keynote speaker. She'll be talking about GMC. If you haven't heard of GMC, I highly recommend you pick up the book. Note: it's far, far cheaper to buy it directly from the publisher. Sellers gouge the price for her GMC book on Amazon.

Also coming to the mini conference... Michelle Grajkowski of Three Seas Literary Agency, authors Kerrelyn Sparks, Winnie Griggs, Lenora Worth, and Beth Cornelison...plus several others. Those are the ones I can think of off the top of my head.

There's an itenerary listed on the Nola Stars website. The entire conference is $25 if preregistered, or $30 at the door. You can't beat those prices. I'm psyched to be going. Author Keri Ford and I will be presenting a workshop on epublishing, self publishing, and publishing through a small press. Interesting stuff you don't want to miss.

Yes, a shameless plug, but I can't help it. I'm excited about the mini-con. It's kinda like summer camp for book junkies and writers. I love this sort of thing. Yes, I'm one of those people who likes to sit around and talk craft til the cows come home, so be warned if you sit next to me! Another benefit of me going to summer writerly sessions...it spares my poor kids and hubby from having to listen to all my book chatter for a day or so. Heh. My poor beasts. ;o)

Oh! Before I forget, here's a self accountability update: I'm still brainstorming on the next story. I've nailed down two characters, an overall theme, the small town where the story will take place, and a general relationship dynamic. I'm still developing the ideas, but I should be able to start working on my character sketches next week. If I'm not swamped with those edits, that is. I have to put the edits first...we're on a very tight time frame. You won't hear me complaining though. I look forward to seeing this book finished and on the shelf.

That's all for now. I'm off to go run a few errands before the weekend sets in. ;o) I hope you have a wonderful Friday!

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Unleash the Crazy

So I've had this boxed Acer Aspire sitting in my office since Mother's Day. It was my gift from hubby...also my tax return gift from Uncle Sam, if you care to go that route. I didn't want to touch it until I finished Wicked Obsession and got it sent off to the publisher. Well, it's been a few days since I did that, so I finally decided to open it around 11pm last night.

OMFG!!!! Why didn't I just go outside and beat myself in the head with a 2x4 a few times? It would have been more productive and less painful. The system was a breeze to set up. It turns on fine. The catch?  The S.O.B will not recognize my wireless network. I have tried everything under the sun to get this *a million awful curse words* thing to connect to the bloody internet. I've begged. I've pleaded. I've called on Jesus. It. Won't. Connect. It refuses. It gives me the stink eye from across the room. It has closed off the portal to frakkin Narnia, people. Someone call the men in white coats before I start snapping all the crayons!

After fighting with this beotch until almost 2 in the morning, I had this grand epiphany to bring my laptop in here and hook it up along side the Acer. Well, the Acer has turned its sniveldy nose up at the Moo (my ancient Gateway lappy). Now I'm truly ready to run screaming into the wilderness.

To take a break from the insanity, I decided not to break out the voodoo doll - yet. Instead, I decided it would be a good idea to check my email. The good news is, I heard from my publisher. I now have a release date for the vampire novel. The scary part is that release day is soon...oh man...so very soon. This month. And that brings me to my next bout of panic and paranoia because I don't have the new computer running yet!

So, after all the fighting and hair pulling I've done tonight, I had to get in here, rearrange things, and set up the Moo as my primary computer again so I'll be ready to take on all the last minute jazz to do with the vamp novel. Whew!

It'll probably be expensive, but I think I'm going to have to call the DSL people to come out and set everything up for me. I've gotta get it working, and it looks like I'm not going to be able to spare the time or the brain power. I have the vamps on my plate now, and I still have that workshop coming up next week to prepare for.  *_*

Update: Woot! I bought a new network wireless adapter, installed it, and my new Acer is tooling around the net with no problems. Yay. Now I can rest.