Tuesday, March 31, 2009
My unease is centered around my writing career. I love writing a great story that moves readers to know more about the characters--or at least enough to send me an email asking about my secondary characters. I mean I'm comfortable writing about bondage and discipline, kinky sex, multiple partners within hetero relationships, but each of my stories are contemporary pieces, set in fictitious cities. My characters are regular humans--no paranormal elements here.
So, why am I nervous? Because the next book I have scheduled to release in May and the story I'm currently working on are way outside my comfort zone. I'm loving the challenge involved with writing these stories, but I'm also very uneasy about offering up a quality story readers will enjoy.
The genres I've decided to venture into: m/m erotic romance and paranormal historical romance. The m/m story is in editing as I type and I really like the way it's shaped up. I even had a friend who is involved in a m/m relationship read the story and he was impressed that I could describe m/m sex so well. LOL. I had to assure him that I have a great imagination and had done my research before writing it.
The paranormal historical is a little more difficult to deal with. I like researching, but I'm a very lazy writer. I mean really lazy! If I can fudge the details, I will, but with this story, I really don't want to do that. Unfortunately, my vampire is very different from other types of vamps and I'm a bit worried that the readers may not accept my type of vampire.
But, I guess I'll just have to see. I've got the rough outline of the story and when it gets fleshed out, it'll tell me what will and won't work.
I would like to know though, just how much leniency I can expect from the readers. Can you all give me an idea just how much wiggle room you give authors when it comes to historical details? Or how much leeway will you give to authors in connection with the creation of the paranormal world they conjure up?
Thank you ahead of time for your input!! I'm looking forward to hearing from you all.
Have a great day!
Monday, March 30, 2009
Its been so long since I've graced these beautiful pages with a bit of quirk and spark! I want to get everyone caught up on the news for the past two months.
How was everyone's February? Smashing, beautiful wonderful? Great! Well as everyone knows March is a great Month, wonderful month! Its my birthday month. How can that not be wonderful! But as with any month sometimes things go a bit crazy. Ever have those moments when you look at the calendar on your wall a few times and wonder where did the tarot cards go wrong? Mercury in retrograde, Saturn in hiding, Pluto demoted?
What the-? Yup a little too much for one's own good.
Months like these, when things are so crazy that its like a reality show, is what I call my own March Madness. Now mind you, you can label this for any month, but March Madness has a bit of a zinger to it. And yes, it does correlate with basketball, it is when the best of the best in college ball go up against each other. In my little multi-colored world, March Madness is when the best of life's great quirks, joys and weirdness go up against each other. And then, you leave it to the top and awesome championship, which in the overall scheme of things, was my engagement. You can see then that it isn't just a game, its a lifestyle.
What started this was my alter ego; Super Chemist. Now even though some writers won't admit it, my joy is at times interrupted by the outside world. On my day to day, I'm a chemistry graduate student. Yes, that's right, I said the the C word. And I can tell you its a fun-filled world where I squirt stuff into a vial and play on the computer...so to speak. Simple enough but yet manages to keep my away from my writing in what feels like a good portion of the week.
So yes, the hussle and bussel of the month can be summed up into so many things. But mind you to explain each of these things, requires almost an entry for each one!
And you'll get to see why, my March summed up:
1. rain storms (over 20 million inches of rain),
2. black outs (knock myself out as I walk into a wall),
3. delayed admissions applications (We regret to inform you we don't have a paper of yours....even though we've had your package since December and decided to wait till March 4th to tell you with a deadline of April 1st),
4. standardized exams (Bombastic - Mila definition - does not mean Boombastic by shaggy)
5. the ides of March upon ye (arrrgh),
6. my birthday (Hey shawty its my birthday, i'm gonna party like its my birthday, I'm gonna drink Bacardi like its my birthday, and I don't care cause its all about my birthday!)
7. A romantic proposal (he had me at hello)
8. Exams (why yes professor I did study, not on this class though....)
9. Edits every chance I can get (Amazing how at the time this made sense to me.....wow, do I torment my editors).
Jammed pack huh? Yes, that is definitely a whirlwind. So what am I doing to recover from such a hurricane, well I'm doing the most cheesy thing possible. I'm watching Twilight, catching up on my grading and editing manuscripts.
One more day its all over for March and then, I say lets catch up on sleep!
Bring on April! Wooohoooo!!!!
Mila Ramos ~ Paranormal & Contemporary Romance
Sunday, March 29, 2009
For quite some time, romance authors have been writing about “Alpha Males.” An alpha male is supposed to be a guy who is tough and take-charge. He knows what he wants and goes after it. He’s protective and dominant.
Lately I’ve heard a lot of people talking about how much they love alpha males as romance heroes. That’s all well and good. I don’t mind an alpha male hero myself, if he’s well-written. That’s not what I want to
complain about discuss today.
My problem is not the Alpha Male in general, but rather the trend I’ve seen—what I refer to as the Super-Alpha Male. The Super-Alpha Male (SAM) is most often found in paranormal romance, although he can appear in contemporaries. In my opinion, the SAM is a sort of seventies throwback character who is not an appealing hero. Read on and see if you agree with me. (And watch me get fancy with tables n' stuff!)
The Alpha Male (AM) vs. the Super-Alpha Male (SAM)
Very strong, often oversized (literally)
Stoic, not usually free with feelings
Eschews any sign of weakness
Always right (or believes himself to be)
Will take “no” for an answer—but will also use masculine wiles / seduction to get his way
Believes his mate is his to take whenever he wants (seen more often in paranormal, futuristic, or historical stories)
Protective of mate
Protects mate by taking away her (or his) choices
I don’t enjoy reading about SAMs. At all. I read a book by a famous paranormal author (who shall remain nameless) in which the hero appeared and basically took over the heroine’s life. He took her from her home and friends, forced her to become his mate against her will because it was “fated,” and refused to let her make any decisions of her own. The heroine, who had started out as a pretty alpha character herself, ended up subjugating herself completely to her new mate. This was all supposed to be okay because the hero was a paranormal creature and he had issues. The book was excruciating to read, and by the end I wanted to punch the so-called hero in the face. A controlling jerk does not a sexy hero make.
But then again, someone must think I'm wrong, because I keep seeing books like the one I just mentioned.
What do you all think? Are you bothered by the rise of the SAM? What kind of heroes do you prefer—Alphas, Betas, or something else?
Saturday, March 28, 2009
Let's pretend you're sitting at an outdoor cafe with one of your friends. People are walking by on the street and you're not really paying them any mind, when DAMN! You see him, and holy hell is he something to see.
What is it that struck a chord like that in you? Is it the way his pants fit. The swagger in his gait. The way the wind just caught his hair. Is it a rugged face? A stong jaw? Perfect skin. A mouth that has yours watering? I could go on and on... Maybe he's gripping the strap of a satchel that's swung over his shoulder and his hand just sends tingles down your spine. Or maybe the weight of that satchel is tugging the fabric of his shirt just enough to give you visions of the heaven that lies beneath. Whatever it is, you're on fire. And then...
He catches your eye. Dear God! You need to change your panties and you haven't gotten within ten feet of this man. Surely his pheromones aren't projecting that far over the smells of the street and the aromas of the cafe. No, this is purely physical attraction.
Now let's imagine another scenario - something more up close and personal. You're with your lover, standing on a balcony overlooking the beach. A warm wind is blowing. He's standing behind you with his arms around your waist. You're comfortable with one another's bodies. You love the way he's holding you, but then he makes that one little move that has you wanting to climb him like a tree and not come off until the fire department sends out the ladder truck. Maybe he bends down to kiss you below the ear or squeezes your hips in that super-sensitive spot on top of the bone. Maybe he tells you exactly what you want to hear or slips his hand beneath the hem of your blouse and teases your belly or presses his hard cock into the small of your back. Whatever it is, he knows your trigger and he's just pulled it.
Now let's get really personal. What's your trigger? Either something that gets you going when you see someone for the first time or when you're in a more intimate setting. I'll admit, I have a thing for strong neck tendons. I know, I know, a lot of you probably don't pay any attention to necks at all. But boy, I can spot a sexy neck on a man, a mile away. Whew! I'm getting bothered just thinking about it.
Suddenly I'm in the mood to eat at an outdoor cafe.
Hope you have a great weekend!
Friday, March 27, 2009
Lemondrop ran an interesting item this week about the 10 things a guy doesn't want to find in your room. It's a semi-cool list and I agree with many of them - such as condom wrappers in the trash, dozens of stuffed animals in the room, photos with your ex and, the bible on the nightstand but I can do better than this.
As a gay man who hears it from both sides - both the scary things my mates find and the embarrassing things women confess they do, so in the interest of romance (hey I write romances, remember) I'd like to present my top 1o things A Guy Doesn't Want to Find in Your Room:
10. Forget the condom wrappers...what about the used condoms? Eeeww!
9. More than a few macabre photos of horrific things such as lynchings. My mate Tony saw these in a woman's bedroom. She said it was research, but he took my advice and ran for the frickin' hills.
8. Sharp, lethal objects mounted and lovingly displayed on the walls
7. Empty booze bottles spilling out of the waste basket
6. Unflushed 'floaters' in your toilet
5. Anything to do with 'The Secret' such as those stupid million dollar checks made out to yourself posted on your wall and 'intention boards' with the word 'husband' pasted on it
4. Canned hunting photos of you and some poor, drugged, dazed endangered critter
3. The Encyclopedia of Auto erotic Asphyxiation as bedtime reading next to a roll of duct tape (this actually happened)
2. A gigantic boat-sized dildo that's um...obviously been used. If you know what I mean...
1. My boyfriend Herve. He's mine. MINE!
What about you? What don't YOU want to see in a guy/girl's room?
Thursday, March 26, 2009
I learned about a few kinks I never even knew existed and found myself intrigued by a lot of them. Some were things I knew I wouldn't enjoy and I was informed that was okay. Not everyone gets their kicks the same way. ^_^ So I wrote my story and passed it on to several betas that are involved in actual D/s relationships. Several of them are in lesbian D/s relationships and since my main characters are lesbians that was important to me. They proofed it and pointed out a few things but overall it got a great big thumbs up. I'm currently working on the second in the series but what I want to know is this. If BDSM is supposed to be safe, sane and consensual why do so many books have it portrayed differently? Am I missing out on something? Did rape suddenly become sexy? (Because the idea of a man or woman being forced to do something they don't want to do makes me ill not aroused) What authors have you read that write BDSM that you absolutely love?
I'd love to hear everyone's thoughts on this.
Celebrating GLBT day on my yahoo group today
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Muse and Polish.
Muse is just one of those words I don't like. I'm not really sure why. I only know that there isn't a little person sitting on my shoulder or in my subconscious that tells me when it's in the mood to write. I choose to write or not to write. I'm either in the mood or not. There is no muse. There's me and my imagination.
Polish elicits more of a personal reaction. Writers use it as often as they use muse. To me polish means to edit a book to the point where you make it sterile and boring. You make it too perfect.
I think New York Times Bestselling Author Lori Foster said it best, and I hope she doesn't mind me quoting her:
"My feeling is that if you polish a book too much, it'll be flat and shiny and smooth--and not too interesting. It's the little pits and bumps and whatnot that show voice and make a book unique from all the other super shiny, flat surfaces."
Back when I was starting to write for publication, I would edit my books until there was no life left in them. They'd be technically correct but boring. Finally, Lucy Monroe, a member of my local RWA chapter, pointed out to me that I was one of those people that should only do a few edits. The more I edited, the more I wrote my voice out of my story. Then I received further proof that polish is not a good thing for me to do. On a whim (something I do a lot), I had sent three chapters of a WIP to 3 agents. Those chapters had not been edited at all. I had 2 requests for fulls. If you're not a writer, believe me when I say that requests for fulls from good agents are a big deal. Unfortunately and the moral of the story, I didn't have the rest of the book written. ;) I won't do that again, and that's the subject for another blog.
What are your "blackboard" words?
Sunday, March 22, 2009
I'm posting this for Sascha, who's having some problems with the interwebs today.
Fantasy VS. Fear!
By Sascha Illyvich
Warning: A bit personal information coming up! But this is Midnight Seductions, where fantasies can become written word! So tell me readers, do you have any sexual fantasies you’re afraid of? I mean not fearing in such a manner as to suggest you’d die. But fantasies that define that hidden part of you that you refuse to acknowledge even in your stories?
I’ll share one of mine to give you an example and then we’ll analyze that fear. The fantasy is simple. I want to be dressed fully as a woman and then surrounded by a number of men who would jack off on me or in me, and the last two who came could pull down my panties and fuck me or let me blow them.
The fantasy could get wilder or milder depending on how fast “I” get off. Or how much more fun I’d like to have.
The problem/fear with this is pretty interesting. First off, I can’t really discuss this with too many of my friends, and don’t even THINK about telling the Girlfriend. Both Dommes see this as hot btw.
Next up is my fear of a repeat performance with anal sex. The first and only time I’ve been penetrated just…well let’s say I got off and that guy still buys me dinner occasionally. But it was less than perfect minus my orgasm.
Then there’s the entire issue with me cross dressing. Oh, I don’t have a problem. Most of the people I deal with who know I write, know I’m kinky. Some are okay, some are jealous (I look DAMN good in garter/thigh highs and other assorted lingerie!) But the men in question who would want to play with me- well experience has taught me that they either want to kiss and cuddle, which I’m not fond of. Or they want to treat me like rough trade --which I don’t do because to me that implies I’m not in control. Yet, I want to be a total slut in this manner too. So what the hell am I to do?
I’m pretty strong but if I had seven or eight guys and didn’t have the proper judgment in who came over, well it could be a blood bath and huge mess.
Or am I overreacting? One solution I came up with was to have one of my dear friends be “security” for this party/orgy because she’s got a bigger knife collection than I do and isn’t afraid of anything. Another of course would involve my Dommes and their supervision. But the panic would still set in to some degree until perhaps lust overrode it. That’s my hopeful anyway.
So how about you? Do you have any fantasies that you’re deathly afraid of but want so bad that sometimes you masturbate just thinking about that one thing alone?
I mentioned some time back in a post on writing to music to create atmosphere but now that I'm taking a month off, I'm changing my playlist to reflect downtime. No, I'm not listening to smooth jazz instead of death metal, I'm just listening to different bands that I haven't heard from in awhile.
The recharge in my writing is needed and backed by me spending my days smoking cigars, drinking and reading. Up on my list of reads is The Snow Queen by Mercedes Lackey, Predatory Game, by Christine Feehan and numerous other books. When I finish this stack (Carolyn Jewel is on the list too as is Sherrilyn Kenyon) I'll go get more.
Oh sure I have some blogging responsibilities and storycraft stuff to do this month but I'm taking it easy. Musically, I'm listening to Mudvayne, Cold, Sevendust (Sevendust stays on almost permanent rotation) Soundgarden and I may even break out Korn.
Or if I get my way and can find my blues CDs I might break out Miles Davis and John Coltrane. I love listening to them while I smoke and drink. Makes it seem...more mature and makes me feel like I've accomplished a lot this year--which I have.
The shift in music for this writer allows me to just enjoy and not pick up on the vocalist/musicians feelings for any other reason than pure enjoyment. I'm tired, it's been a LOOONG year and I need a breather. Not to think too much. Or do too much. Radio Dentata will be featuring excerpts from some of the hottest authors around on my show this month so I can relax and not work so hard.
How about you? Do you change music often? between projecs? Holidays?
Saturday, March 21, 2009
Born 2 B. Wylde
For a free PDF sample book email me at email@example.com
Thursday, March 19, 2009
One of the scenarios was about a man who was Hispanic being beat up by a group of 3 guys in front of a bar. Why? Well it was just because of his race. The situation was based on a real event where a man was beaten and killed just because of his race. Nobody stopped to help him as he suffered. The scenario was repeated all day and over 100 people walked by as the man was being beaten. His face was bloody and swollen.
I was shocked that out of all the people who walked by this only a five stopped and tried to help him or save him. Everyone else walked by ignoring it or just watched.
I understand that some people don't want to intervene or get involved. If so would it be too much to pick up the phone and call the cops so that they could come and save the man?
Watching the show it made me think, this happens everyday and sadly people ignore and choose to do nothing. What would happen if you were in their place. You would need help, want it and nobody would stop to give it.
Has society become so desensitized to helping others?
There were other scenarios that required a person requiring help and once again not even a handful of people did anything....
Wow....For those that did stop to help it was interesting at the reasons they gave to why they had done what they had done...
I know that if it were me that were in the situation I would hope that someone would stop by and give me assistance.
Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you witnessed something wrong and stepped in to help?
If you want to watch the show here is a link to the episode
I wish you a great day...
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
I'm not naive enough to think we join loops just for fun. We're there, for the most part, to promote our work. There's not a thing wrong with quietly announcing that a recent release has gotten a good review or that you've received a new cover or contract. Perfectly acceptable. But if I ever happy dance or squeeeeeee...please shoot me and put me out of everyone's misery. Reading post after post of raving, wild bouts of celebration is like hearing someone rip a styrofoam cup to pieces. Nails on a chalk board? Same thing. It crosses the borders of good taste and dives straight into getting yourself labeled a braggart. Now, I don't know about you guys, but that was one of the things I was taught never to do.
A perfect example of a writer's bragging biting her on the ass came to my attention the other day. She bragged to the owner of a popular writers' blog about her work, her new publisher who was going to put everyone else to shame, and how she was now an editor for said publisher. What did this bout of diarrhea of the mouth gain her? A review from the recipient of this shameless bragging. Her book, complete with excerpts, was totally trashed in a public forum. Last time I checked there were somewhere around 350 comments about how pitiful this book was and how HUGELY untalented was the author. They laughed. They jeered.
Let me saw straight out that I don't care for blogs that bash people. I really don't, so I don't visit this particular spot often, but this thing was like watching a train wreck. You know you shouldn't watch but are helpless to do otherwise. I feel sorry for this woman. No one wants to be made a public laughingstock. Guess the moral of the story is...don't behave like you are a legend in your time because nine times out of ten, you are only a legend in your own mind.
Sometimes Karma is a bitch!
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
At the time, I had never heard of eBooks. Then I was browsing around the Internet when I came across a website that sold romance stories online. I read some of the excerpts and thought to myself, I can do that. So, I took a story I had already been playing with and really focused on the romance angle. The next thing you know, I had a contemporary romance on my hands. I submitted it and the publisher loved it. She wanted to publish it and that officially started my career as a writer! I was so excited that I did the Snoopy Dance!
Of course, I couldn't do any of it if not for my hubby. He's not only very patient and supportive, but he's also the best research assistant a girl could ask for!
"Stories so hot, they'll make your cheeks blush!"
Monday, March 16, 2009
So I’ve decided to try something new; I am writing my first Fantasy story. Normally I don’t derail from the Erotic/Contemporary genres; it’s my comfort zone. But still I like to challenge myself so I am going for it. Yes, I am nervous because what if I suck at it??? Never the less I am not going to let the fear stop me.
The idea for the book came to me one night years ago, when I got home drunk as a skunk after a night of partying with my friends. It was like my male lead came out and said ever so eloquently, “What up fucker? Here I am to be a pain in the ass and make your life a living hell.” I know he sounds like such a gem, huh? But of course I pushed it to the idea to the side because I doubted I could write it. That is until now…
Before I even attempted to write it, I did tons of research and still going at it as ideas keep popping into my head. I guess it’s the anal freak in me that wants to get it right. But I mean all fellow writers can agree when I say that your characters are your babies, and you want to get them right; make them justice. And so I spend hours at time looking for logical reason’s to the insanity in my head lol!
On a different note the second book of my Ringside Series, Twice the Thrill: Matt is coming out soon from Red Rose Publishing. Here’s a blurb for ya’ll:
Matt Carlson here and there is two things I live for; wrestling and women. Together with my brother Eric, we make Wrestling Entertainment Association’s top tag team. We love the ring, and we’re good at it. There ain’t no stunt we won’t do, well that won’t kill us. When it comes to the ladies, I don’t discriminate; I love them all! Ok not all. The exception to that is Mila Vidal; she’s stuck up and a goodie two shoes. No thank you! I like my women easy and willing. We were once close friends. I know, what the hell I was thinking, but hey we all make mistakes.
If working with her is bad enough, having to live with her will certainly bring things from our past that I don’t want to revisit. Then again, don’t they say that your past will catch up to you?
Hi I am Mila Vidal, physical therapist for Wrestling Entertainment Association. A year of working with the WEA and I can land a job anywhere I want. You would think I’d be happy after landing such a great opportunity, but no. My work ethics are being tested, by none other than Matt Carlson; resident pig, and moron. I don’t know how I am going to make it a year without killing him, or at least giving him a permanent injury. You would agree with me if you met him.
You are probably thinking that I have a secret ‘thing’ for Matthew, but no it’s not like that between him and me. I have valid reasons to despise him. And I could never forgive him for what he’s done. Ever.
Sunday, March 15, 2009
"Rich in romance and suspense, this book had me mesmerized from the first page. I was definitely drawn toward the main character, Traci, and all of the emotional barriers that she faced. One man however, is determined to wait it out and break through those barriers no matter how long it takes. Patience is one of Scott McCord’s attributes and he has all the time in the world....This is a "must read" for any romance reader's bedside table. Amanda Burns has done a sensational job of combining just the right amount of suspense with a sauciness that leaves you longing for more. Run, don't walk to your nearest book store for this sensational book." Reviewed by Val of You Gotta Read Reviews. Rating: You Gotta Read
Hot-shot Chicago prosecuting attorney Traci Steele works tirelessly keeping rapists off the street to prevent other women from suffering the hell she’s endured, so she resists her friends’ insistence that she take a two month R&R in their California Live Oak condo—until they persuade her to help their rancher friend as a private investigator.
Though he runs the stables at Live Oak, well-muscled mustached wrangler Scot McCord much prefers working with the race horses he trains at his ranch, and he can’t believe his old friends have sent a greenhorn female to help him with horse troubles.
The improbable dance between this mismatched pair barely fits in around the escalating suspense of whoever’s after Scot’s horses. Traci is as tenacious in her sleuthing as she is panicked about her inability to ever love a man, but Scot sets out to gentle her as skillfully as he does his horses. Awe-Struck
Detour Ahead is the second novel in my horse racing series. When we owned horses, hubby spent time ground training them, first a quarter horse who'd just come off the track and eventually was purchased by a rancher for cattle cutting, then a saddlebred/Arab mix we purchased as a colt and later sold for dressage. We were mere amateurs (and were well coached thru the whole process) but Scott, the hero, is an expert who could rival the Horse Whisperer, and everything he knows will be put to the test to keep Tracy from bolting and running away for keeps. Here's a link to an excerpt.
I set this book in the San Diego foothills, not far from Ramona, where we once spent wonderful vacation time at a similar resort (but without all the suspense, of course!). This book shares some characters with Willow Smoke - Clint and Cassie Travers - but doesn't require the first book to be understood.
Friday, March 13, 2009
Available today @ www.romancedivine.com - http://www.allromanceebooks.com - Amazon.com Kindle Books
Case O'Brien wanted nothing more than a relationship, someone to care about - and someone to care about him. Could colleague Rob Nelson be that special someone? Were their Master/slave games only that - games? Or will this turn out to be the real thing? Case needs to find out if Rob is the one or if he is Just Not Into Me.
While chatting at one of the groups this month, an author posted an excerpt of her book. The female character in her book was overweight. I often wonder if the reader would enjoy reading a description that fit the every day image of a person, whether they are a little heavy or have some other imperfection.
I believe most of us try to follow the older romance novels put out by Harlequin and Silhouette while writing where everyone in those novels were either shapely and also had perfect features. This isn’t always a true image of every day people, unless you’re a movie star and we know the movie star people do a regimen of plastic surgery to keep beautiful while in the limelight.
In the past, I wrote a book describing the hero with a scar that ran the length of his neck and a little onto his cheek. I felt this gave him a little more character, along with a toughness I was looking for to describe him. No one complained about the less than handsome hero.
I often wonder how the reader feels about what the characters look like. Does anyone reading this blog want the characters to be perfect or would you mind a little imperfection in our descriptions? Would you rather have strong personalities over looks?
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Now, all these years later, I am married to a man who eats like Fred Flinstone, I love to travel like the Jetsons, and I run from men named Gargamoyle! Who knew?
You just have to have humor in life. So, if you were a cartoon character...who would you be?
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
I admit it. I've been on Facebook for only a couple of weeks, and I'm hooked.
I've been on MySpace for a couple of years, but I've all but abandoned that page. It's not nearly as user-friendly. Yeah, I loved changing the layout and stuff, but Facebook is so immediate and easy to use. I think it's also better for promo, which brings me to my topic.
What do you do to promote yourself online?
I've had some pretty good luck with Facebook and Twitter so far, and I'm very new to both. It's just that they're so easy! I also love the applications on Facebook. I play Cute Catz, Lil Green Spot, Lil Blue Cove, Willy's Sweet Shop, SuperPoke, and Poke most often. That way, I get to know people rather than bombard them with book promos. I've invited peeps to friend me when I see they have come by to play with my Cute Cat Koala. I'm also friending people who are also friends of Xcite Books, since I have already published one short story with Xcite - "Callipa The Stripper" for "Ultimate Burlesque". My new story, "The Beautiful Move In Curves", will appear in the Xcite book "Ultimate Curves", which will be released in May. The title of my story comes from the quote "In life, as in art, the beautiful move in curves", from Edward George Bullwer-Lytton.
My husband gets a major kick out of those applications, since he's a huge gamer himself. He plays World of Warcraft all the time. He used to be Executive Producer for Atari and Producer for Avalon Hill games, and he has wanted to see me play games for years. When I told him I was feeding, playing with, and caring for Koala to get him a higher ranking, he told me I was "leveling up". LOL! When I told him I was chasing a rainbow in Lil Green Spot, he told me I was on a quest. He gets a major kick out of this because I'm not a gamer. So now I have my own games. He also tells me he thinks I would have loved Tamagochi when it was popular. The only game I really interested in playing right now is Second Life.
Anyway, I always link to my blog and excerpts on Facebook and Twitter. Since I'm a sex writer, I link to the Adult Blog Hub, Pleasurists (for sex toys reviewers), Fetlife (for kinksters), Digg, and Propeller. I also promote myself in several Yahoo romance groups, although not nearly as many as I used to. I had pretty good results yesterday when I did some morning promo. Does anyone else wonder if readers actually read the Yahoo groups romance writers promo on? I think there are a few that attract readers, but most seem to be excerpt/promo farms, and I don't waste my time with them anymore.
Anyway. I'm curious to see how you promote yourself. Where do you promo? And are you as addicted to Facebook as I am?
Just for kicks, speaking of Facebook, I read an article saying that old fogies are all over Facebook, so the kids and college aged kids should just avoid it. How does the article define an old fogie?
Anyone over 30. Geez....
I don't have a link to the article anymore, but I do know that people over 30 are the largest growing demographic on Facebook. So I'm in good company.
Here's a kicker. I got in touch with an old movie colleague I haven't talked to in about fifteen years when I found his Facebook page. Now that's networking!
And now for something completely different, just in time for my birthday on March 14. Most readers know I'm a sex toys writer. Go to my blog and check out my new silly graphic image on my left sidebar. It's a game called "Slap The Dildo". Go for it!! Just go in and slap that sucker. Scroll down on my blog until you find it. You'll know it when you see it. You can trust Lizzie to find the goofiest stuff on the Internet.
Go Slap The Dildo, and keep an eye out for my upcoming stories. In May, my short story "The Beautiful Move In Curves" will appear in the "Ultimate Curves" anthology published by Xcite in the UK. In June, "The Haunting Of The Sandpiper" will be released by Whiskey Creek Press Torrid. "Sandpiper Inn" is a paranormal erotic romance, and it is my first novel. I know you will enjoy both!
So tell me, how do you promo, and what works for you? Readers, what attracts you to a particular book?
Monday, March 9, 2009
Hello everyone, Today I'm posting a tongue in cheek book review I wrote several years ago when I was writing book reviews.This particular review is for The Journal of Mortifying Moments as given in a ficticious radio show - A BOOK REVIEW 4 U. I have four or five of such reviews which I started, to the dismay of the review site, when I got bored writing the same old reviews. If you like it let me know and I'll post others.
“Good morning ladies and gentlemen and welcome to another edition of A Book Review 4 U. Today we will be reviewing a book by Robyn Harding intriguingly called The Journal of Mortifying Moments, which apparently is her initial book.
“With us, this fine Saturday morning, our usual panel members ET and Pamela Anderson
. ET of course is our resident Science Fiction expert and Pamela doesn’t know all that much about books, but she sure is nice to look at, right ET. Gimme three! That a boy! The gentleman to his left is, of course, ET’s long time interpreter Hailey Comet, and last but not least is our two guest panel members, Presidential Advisor, Karl Rogu . . . ah, er, excuse me, Karl Rove and controversial Comedian Chris Rock. Sorry about the slip Karl. Yes Chris.”
“What yo mean controversial? Ain’t nobody more controversial than you!”
“Well, I supposed you do have a point there Chris. I, of course, I am your host, if you don’t recognize me, my name is William Jefferson Clinton. I used to work for the government, but now I’ve have a real job and I’m loving it.”
“As usual, I’ll give a brief summary of the book, giving everybody a feeling for the book and then we’ll have a comment from our resident opinionator, Mr. D and then we’ll open things up for discussion by our panel. Sorry ET but this one isn’t your favorite, Science Fiction, but it is a good book, isn’t it? What? Again? You haven‘t read it yet, but you‘ll read it on the commercial break. I wish you wouldn’t do that. You make everybody envious, including the lovely lady sitting next to you.”
“Oh don’t worry about it Billy-boy. I realize he has some amazing attributes but I have some attributes too.”
“I just want you to know that I think your attributes are pretty amazing. Can I see them.”
“Pamela. Stop that!”
“Why, Billy-boy? I did it on The Howard Stern Show.”
“Pamela. Do you see those cameras out there? This is television. That was radio.”
“I know Billy-boy but I want to contribute for a change.”
“I want you to contribute too, but not to a big FCC fine. You can contribute after the show. “Okay, let’s move on. Here’s a brief summary of the book.”
Kerry Spence is in a chronic dead end relationship with her dreamboat of a boyfriend Sam Miller. She also works in an ad agency where she can’t stand ninety percent of her co-workers and vice-versa. She also seems to be on a different page than her mother, who always seems to be putting her down adding to her already low self-esteem.
The only bright spot in otherwise her bleak existence is the friendship and loyalty of her good friends Sandra, Val and Michelle and a friendship with a gay coworker Trevor. Unfortunately her friends are also borderline neurotic and don’t seem to be helpful.
So, what do you do when you feel outclassed by your boyfriend, disparaged by your mother and can’t stand your job? Why, go to a therapist of course. What did the therapist come up with? She asked Kerry to write a journal of her most humiliating experiences. At first she thinks this is a inane project but as she continues to write her most embarrassing moments, which all happen to involve men, in her Journal of Mortifying Moments, she begins to come to some realizations.
“We now have Mr. D on the phone to get his analysis. Good morning Mr. D. I hope it‘s not too early for you back in Arizona, after all it is six o’clock there isn‘t it?”
“No Problem. The coyotes kept me up, howling all night”
“I’m sorry. If I may get right to the point, what did you think of this weeks book, The Journal of Mortifying Moments?”
“Well Bill, for typical, so called chick lit, I thought the good outweighed the bad. The author Robyn Harding displays a jocularity and sense of irony. Some of the scenarios and that’s what the book is – a series of scenarios – were clever and well portrayed, but the humor in all cases was at the expense of the heroine, who by the way, I never got a sense of. To my knowledge the author never really described Kerry other than she herself felt she had a large and expanding butt.”
The fact that the heroine was depicted in such an unflattering light was a problem for me. She seemed to be so vulnerable and incompetent, it even seems odd to call her a heroine. Protagonist is probably more apt. When I think of Kerry the word buffoon comes to mind, like she was playing a straight man, or lady in this case, to fate.”
The author’s overall character development was adequate but just barely. Some characters more than others. I had a good feel for Trevor, who was pretty good by the way and Sandra and Kerry’s mom, but Val and Michelle were strangers except Michelle was logical and business like.”
Harding’s writing style is well paced, uses dialogue effectively and has a reader friendly prose style. She doesn‘t waste words, her writing is direct, she doesn‘t meander off in other directions and she‘s smooth. This book is 308 pages, when 500 plus is the apparent norm. Despite the fact that some of the scenes and scenarios, seemed contrived, The Journal of Mortifying Moments, as a whole, holds up well. Especially for a debut.”
“Great, thanks again Mr. D for your insights. How’s that book of yours coming along?”
“We’re finished and in for printing. Thanks for asking, Bill”
“You’re welcome, good luck. So what do you rate this book?”
“Sorry Bill, I giving The Journal of Mortifying Moments – Three and a half stars!”
“Excellent. We‘ll take a break now and when we come back we‘ll hear what our panel has to say.”
“OK Panel, we’re back live now. Let’s talk about The Journal of Mortifying Moments.”
“I loved it. I thought it was humorous, droll and clever. And ah . . . oh yeah succinct and I loved the mortifying moments. Like when she was twelve and the shy boy she had a crush on, told how many times a day he touched himself, rather than take Kerry behind a bush and kiss her. I give it 4 1/2 stars.”
“Hmmmm, ok ET how did you see it”
“Mr ET thought it was good, but he would like to have seen the sex scenes be more explicit and for it to take place in space. He still gives it four stars”
“I see, explicit sex scenes huh, I thought you guys were unisex, oh well Karl what did you think? Karl, hello Karl!”
“Sorry Bill, I was just noticing a little bump on Pamela‘s . . . never mind. What did you ask me again?”
“What we‘re here for, your evaluation of The Journal of Mortifying Moments.”
“Certainly. Ahhem. I thought the book, while cleverly written, set a poor example to the young women of this great nation. It extolls promiscuous behavior and wanton sex, even in unromantic situations. I’m no prude, mind you, but Sandra deciding to have the baby of her sixty-five year old married boyfriend was over the top. Not to mention that some of Kerry’s mortifying moments were licentious and demeaning. Take the one where she ties up her boyfriend d’ jour to the bedposts with the use of scarves only to start a fire from a plethora of burning candles, some of which were set in a pentagram for God’s sake.”
“Yes, yes, sorry I digressed. I think the book is well written but the subject matter is vulgar and our people should stay away from it. Two stars, I give it two stars.”
“Thank you Karl. Chris. How about you?”
“A pentagram huh? Wow! Where did you see that? You know, Bill, I liked the book, but are white chicks really that screwed up? I mean, man they’s worse than black chicks, playing games, not answering the phone, trying to guess what her man’s thinking. Seems like she coulda saved herself a whole lot of trouble. Just spit it out girl and stop acting so . . . silly!”
“Man that Kerry chick’s got some serious hang-ups and some of those so called mortifying moments like when one of her fiance wants her to join in a foursome. Hey. You gotta chill out girl. Go with the flow. That shouldn’t be mortifying. It should be stimulating.”
“I agree with Mr. D – 3 1/2 stars.”
“Thanks Chris. So there you have it, The Journal of Mortifying Moments by Robyn Harding. Buy it!”
“That’s it for now. Join us next week when our guest reviewers will be Paris Hilton and Governor Schwarten . . . Schwartze . . . the Governor of California.”
“Until next week this is Willie-boy Clinton signing off. Have a great day!”