Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Radio Interview Tomorrow!

Yours truly has a special announcement! Tomorrow morning, at 5 a.m, EST, I will be appearing on 850 KOA-Am (Clear Channel Radio) to discuss my book, "Romancing the Soul." This show will air in 38 states, Canada and Mexico, so if you're near a radio, tune in!

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

What Is It You Want Out Of Life?

I had a really interesting chat with my dear friend, Michael, just before retiring for bed last night. Now, you gotta know Michael. He is so...so...so philosophical. In my neck of the woods, the best conversation you're going to get is, "Hey, did you see the truck that went down in the ditch a few minutes ago? You didn't? Well, you don't get out much, do ya?" sort of thing.

It's not that I surround myself with non-philosphical people, it's just that I just don't get much of a chance to talk to people about things that are out of their normal, everyday thinking because simply, there is no one around to get into deep stuff. You start talking about the meaning of life and they change the subject and think you're some kind of New Age-type person and completely leave you to go over and talk to someone else about chickens, crab pots or that same truck that went down in the ditch two weeks ago.

The point I'm trying to make is that I love deep talk and when I started talking to Michael, all of that deep talk comes out.

We were talking about taking off and visiting the Cayce Institute in Virginia Beach, a stone's throw away from here, and exploring all that "deep stuff" as soon as we can find the time. He delivers sawmills and often his trips takes him to my neck of the woods, so we're planning on doing that when our schedule meshes.

Anyway, the talk last night was about the meaning of life. Now, that's deep.

His question was, "What is it you want out of life?"

Loaded question but being the philosophical deep thinker that I was, I took a few minutes to contemplate this and replied, "I believe I have accomplished it so there is nothing more I want."

Oh, there were a million things I "need" but "want"?

I believe that needing and wanting are two separate entities. I "want" to get a NY publisher to sign me on. As for "needing" it, well, it would be nice, but it's not going to make my life any different because I'm basically happy with the way things are now. I do have a book published, well, two actually, and that was one of my goals - to become a published author so that I could have the word "Author" on my headstone for when I go to that big bookstore in the sky (I know, I'm demented.)

As for other goals, a healthy life is all I really "need" or "want" to make me happy. I'm basically a down-to-earth person and I don't need material things to make me happy.

So goes the conversation on through the night about different philosophical things.

Like bacon.

I was cooking it and he said he didn't eat bacon.

I asked why and he said because a pig is a ground feeder.

As in...ych.

I love conversations with Michael. He really makes you think and sometimes you need that philosophical fix once in awhile, while learning a few things besides why that truck went off the road or how many crab pots got pulled in today. Gets those brain cells going so that you can finish those #@&^# revisions.

Okay, back to work....groan....

Saturday, August 20, 2005

I'm quoted in "Mean Girls Grown Up" by Cheryl Dellasega!

Yesterday, I received an email from a friend whom I hadn't heard from in awhile, Jeanni Brossius.

Seems someone told her that she and I were both quoted in a book called Mean Girls Grown Up : Adult Women Who Are Still Queen Bees, Middle Bees, and Afraid-to-Bees by Cheryl Dellasega and she wanted to know if I'd heard about it.



The first thing I thought of when she told me the name of it was what in the world have I said now? Who have I offended and who do I have to apologize to this time? Someone has found out I'm a Queen Bee and wanted to tell all my dirty, little secrets of how I eat all my little Middle and Afraid-To-Bees in one big Queen Bee gulp?

And then I thought, hm...there's a million Dorothy Thompsons out there, but what's the odds of both Jeanni and I being quoted in the same book, if it were indeed me?

Thank God for Google.

I googled my little brains out trying to find out who this person was and how I could find out if this story about us being quoted in it was for real. You just can't email someone and say, "Uh, you don't know me, but am I quoted in your book?"

Hell you can't.

So, I did.

Turns out we are quoted in her book after all. A friend of Jeanni's was interviewed for the book and used our quotes. Thank goodness they weren't bad quotes either. Mine, according to this Cheryl Dellasega went like this:

"I have always been more at home with 'the guys.' That is, until I suffered a breakup with my boyfriend. Then my girlfriends rallied around me and nurtured me until I could get back on my feet again."

Hm. Couldn't remember saying it, but this was back when I had another website called The Write Woman which was oh about 3 or so years ago.

It's funny how much changes in just a few years. I'm back with that same boyfriend and never been happier. Guess those girlfriends did a bangup job of getting me back on my feet after all.

The book isn't released yet, but guess who's already put an order into Amazon for it? Well, Jeanni beat me to it, but I'm right behind her.

Now, since this gives me positively wonderful vibrations, if anyone else would like to quote me, I'm all yours. Unless you are the Mafia. I didn't do it. Really.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Thoughts on Querying from Michelle Grajkowski at 3 Seas Lit

Back in May, I had a really nice agent from 3 Seas Literary Agency, Michelle Grajkowski, come into TWL Author Talks to tell us all about agents from their perspective.

Tonight, I was reading the archives and came across something Michelle said about query letters that was really interesting:

The first thing that catches our eye is a professional query letter.One
that contains three major points: 1) The type of book you are querying and the
word count. 2) A brief hook: 2-3 line summary ofyour book. 3) Your bio
information.

The query should grab us and make us want to read on - tell us why we should
read more. It's your sales pitch to us...

The synopsis should be concise, yet detailed. Tell us the beginning, middle,
end, and all the important plot points in between. Show usthe character growth.
But, try to contain it in 3-5 pages...

Fianlly, start your proposal off in the right spot - use action to throw us
right into the story. Keep us interested right to the end and tease us at the end
of chapter three so we want to read the rest.

I found that so interesting tonight.

As some of you know, I've been revising Over the Hill, my hen lit novel that has received four partial requests from agents, and later received three rejections from those agents. So, before I send the partial out again to this fourth agent, I figured I'd better go back in and see what it was that was missing or wasn't grabbing them, so to speak.

I finally figured it out what was missing. Two things actually. Since this book was about a cross country trip, surely there should be something in that first chapter about this. So, I worked on that first chapter so that there would be no question what the book was going to be about.

The second thing that was missing was "voice."

In reading Marianne Mancusi's book, "A Connecticut Fashionista in King Arthur's Court," I see what this "voice" thing is all about. Sure, I thought my voice wasn't bad, but in reading this book, I also saw where I could improve. The difference was in what kind of emotion I was causing in the reader. I wanted them to laugh. Laugh their ass off. And not just in one place, but all through the book. This is why I can't put Marianne's book down. It's her "voice" that makes me want to keep reading it until it's done, while being a very entertaining book to read.

So, I'm still learning, still revising, but I'd like to think I'm making this book better so that maybe, just MAYBE, the fourth agent will like it, too. Who knows...but I liked what Michelle said about teasing the agent at the end of chapter three so that they will request the rest. She had a good point.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Marianne Mancusi Made My Night

Okay, you perverts, it's not what you think...sheesh.

Read on...

Just got back from one of my mini-vacations and I just have to tell you one of the highlights of my trip was reading part of Marianne Mancusi's "A Connecticut Fashionista in King Arthur's Court." This book is surely going to be a movie one day, just watch and see.

We had checked into the hotel room and ran downstairs to do a little gambling. I was tired and went back to my room early, leaving BF to fend for himself on the machines (not that he minded this one bit!).

I had brought along a few paperbacks, being as I'm not fortunate enough to own a laptop or that's where I'd be - checking email, and Marianne's book was the chosen one to while away the hour or two before I hopped into bed.

Well, I couldn't stop reading. This book is sooooo cute. The protag has this cute NY-type attitude and while I don't laugh at things in books ordinarily, I laughed OUT LOUD three separate times and I'm only on page 49. This book is hilarious. I love the concept, the writing, everything. Very different and quite a pleasure to read.

But, you know, it really gave me the umph to get back into this new book I'm writing and that is a very good thing. I really should be revising book #2, but I'm dying to get more written in book #3. I'm on page 79, which isn't too bad. I'm in no hurry...gotta concentrate on the other books first anyway.

So, anyway, I'm glad to be back home, except I have to get back to work...GROAN....but I want to thank Marianne for last night...it was wonderful! *grin*

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Feet, Feet, and Then More Feet

Has anyone ever, after working hard on your feet for eight hours straight, sat down and really got a good look at them afterwards? What makes those blue veins stick out like they do? I mean, it's horrible. I could put these feet in the next Stephen King movie and make a mint.

I went to the web to find a foot picture to show you what they look like as I have yet to learn how to download pictures from my camera to the computer, and I came across some really neat pictures of feet on the web that I'd like to share with you and perhaps give you my psychoanylisis (okay, spelling isn't my strong point) of just whose feet they belong to.

Okay, here's one interesting picture of feet:


Okay, this is a picture of someone whose just been shoveling dog poop all day. Note the poop stains. Gonna take a good scrubbing to get those puppies clean.


Okay, what was this person thinking? Gotta be another way to hide that toe fungus.



Ahhh...I just knew I'd find a before picture.



Uh...


One too many laps in the pool?


Ahhh...happy feet.


Incredible Hulk feet.

Now that you've become an expert on feet, here's a test for you. If you can identify whose feet are down below, I'll send you a free copy of my ebook, "How to Find and Keep Your Soul Mate," which absolutely has nothing to do with feet but hey what do you expect from a stupid foot quiz? Okay, here's the pic and leave your comment below. The first person who gets it right gets the ebook, absolutely free with no strings attached. Hey, I'm bored. Humor me.

Okay, here's the pic (remember it has to be EXACTLY right):




Good luck! Now, I'm going to go prop these tired old feet up...have fun!

Putting the Chick Into Lit

Found a neat article in The Age tonight called "Putting the Chick Into Lit."



For once, a POSITIVE article about the chick lit genre. With all the negative comments we hear from the oh-so-uptight peanut gallery of the literature world, this was like a breath of fresh air.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Clear Channel Radio: Call Me Back!!!

I had a really rather interesting day yesterday. I blew a chance to have a radio appearance on a show that receives a million listeners. Now, you have to keep in mind you have landed on this blog because I'm over the hill, well not exactly, maybe on top of the hill. Yeah, that's it. I'm on top of the hill and I'd like to think I had a choice whether to take that leap down or stay there at the top for awhile because there's no going back down that hill. My poor old feet couldn't take it. Anyway, cripes, I'm sounding like I'm ready for the nursing home.

Back to what I was talking about (another thing about being over the hill is you lose track of what you were talking about and in a lot of cases you forget altogether or you start sounding like you have completely lost your senses as I'm doing right now), I received an email from some radio show telling me to get in touch with them ASAP. WELL. For one thing, ASAP isn't in my vocabulary and another thing it really looked like spam to me.

So what did I do but email them back asking them for more information. No response.

I went about my daily routine, never giving the weird email another thought when I thought I'd sit down and listen to the messages on my answering machine. Okay, another fault of mine is that I hate the phone. It rings and I'm busy so I ignore it. Days later, I find out it's a friend who has been desperately trying to get up with me. Okay. I email her and apologize.

So, I don't even know what possessed me to do it, but I decided what the heck let's see what kind of messages that have been sent to me for the past week. No kidding. I haven't checked it for one week. Like I said, I hate the phone.

That's when I find a message from the producer of Clear Channel Radio. Seems they had a cancellation and wanted me as a replacement. Well, I decided to do my homework and looked up Clear Channel Radio on the internet and I was floored. Their listener base? A million listeners. Holy shit. This was a big one and because I hadn't checked my messages, they found a replacement for ME.

I raced to the computer and emailed the producer, apologizing profusely (and kicking myself in the derriere in the meantime).

He replied saying that once a month they schedule relationship experts and would I be interested in a future interview?

Can we say hell yeah?

So, that's my interesting day I had yesterday. Little ol' me was wanted by a HUGE radio station. And I blew it. All because I hate the telephone. Ain't that something to tell the grandkids.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

I'm featured at Blogcritics and Bloglines!

In yesterday's post over on my The Writer's Life blog, I announced a new FREE ebook for writers called "Writer's Tips," compiled by Parker Owens and in which my article, "Are You Prepared To Be An Author," appears. As if that didn't make me happy, I received news this morning that my article is being featured at both Blogcritics AND Bloglines!