Sunday, March 10, 2013

It's Been Amazing

Carolyn and I have had a wonderful time blogging together and we've loved all the people who have come to spend time with us. But we've decided to move on and close down the blog.

There's no reason beyond our lives changing and less time available to devote to the blog.

Thank you all for being our online friends. We plan on being around and having more great times with y'all.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Crazy People, I'm Crazy For You

Jennifer Crusie is the shits. I mean, really, completely, she's the shits.

I discovered Welcome to Temptation first and fell crazy in love with that story. But when I read Crazy For You, I felt like I found one of the most perfect novels ever written. It's my most re-read novel, averaging 4 - 5 reads a year. And now Jennifer Crusie has Crazy People out, a collection of short stories about the characters in Crazy for You... and it's fucking amazing.

In short form: the novel was developed as she was in the MFA Iowa Program (you know, that program which happens to be the finest in the country). And she'd already sold a couple of books to Harlequin and discovered the writing program focused mostly on short stories. So these are the stories she wrote. And they went on to become Crazy...

I haven't finished them all but so far each one has been a gem. Shiny and pretty and satisfying something deep deep inside. I adored the one about Quinn's mother, Meggy and how she handled her step-father's jokes. It's one of the best stories I've ever read.

I know I'm a total fan girl and since the novel is my favorite, my adoration of these stories makes sense. But I'm not loving this just as a reader. I love these stories as a writer also. Because these stories are a brilliant reminder of why we write. Those wonderful moments in a person's life, the characters, the inside jokes we share.

I'm moved as a reader because I get so much more of my favorite book, favorite author in this collection of stories. And I love it because I needed the reminder of why I love writing.
If you love Crusie, you'll adore Crazy People. I promise you will.

You'll thank me later.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

The Bitch Heroine

Well I just finished another Kristen Ashley book, Creed, and this one had an interesting heroine. Sylvie is hired muscle and works on the shady side of the law. She also openly likes sex, is willing to tell a man that he's just an available cock to her and nothing else and like most Ashley heroines never gets her way. Although unlike them, she admits she just gives in because she doesn't have the patience to fight.

But it got me thinking about bitchy heroines. If I was in a novel, I'd be considered a bitch. I'm opinionated, loud and curse like a sailor. I've also been known to lead sweet Southern women into lives of ridicule and sexual innuendo.

Modern women are hard to write. If they're independent, vocal, comfortable in their own skin and making it in this world then how can a man come in and make it all better? But if she crumbles in her life-coping then how is she a real modern woman?

My favorite heroine of all time is Quinn in Jennifer Crusie's Crazy for You. Quinn can stand up for herself and she does. She leaves a man she feels stagnant with, goes after a man who turns her on, and makes choices that make her happy. Quinn rocks and she does it with humor, guts and never turning the corner into whining or bitchiness.

I'm working on a book right now and the heroine is a business owner, a smart woman and just a little bit close to bitchy. I don't want readers to dislike her so I think there might be a bit of rewriting in my future.

It's funny though. Women today have to work full time, keep the house clean, raise kids, do all the errands and make decisions, while facing a world that still classes them as second class citizens. And we do it. We do it daily and still laugh and love and curse like sailors.

I don't think I'd want to be a romance heroine but I'd be interested to see a woman who is trying to keep it all together who mkes love and romance work in her life, just as another part of it.

(This post is somewhat convoluted since my daughter is doing magic tricks, the cat is scratching my chair and my stomach hurts. I promise to get it together at another time.)

Friday, March 1, 2013

The Silent Fart Finally Speaks

Hi -

Tall Fart Red speaking here. I wanted to explain why I don't post too much, that is if I don't run out of words. Ha ha.

Words have become a precious commodity for me because sometimes they're hard to come by. For example:

I want to say the villain has a constipated look about him, but I can't think of the word constipate. I know what I'm looking for means he can't shit (you should pardon my French) but I can't dredge up the concise, socially acceptable word I want to use. After all, it wouldn't sound right if I said he had a shitless look about him. Would it?

So, I circle the definition warily. Is the word I'm looking for constitution? No, that's not right, although every last politician who is supposed to be defending the constitution looks severely whatever the word is and definitely should take a dump. No, it's not constitution.

Continuity? No, that's not it, although if there were any continuity in life I'd remember the damn word I need.

Compression! We're getting closer because this is what should be done to his belly to relieve his shitless condition. Oh, and it's not condition either.

So - how did I finally arrive at the word?

I called the Short Fart Lori, of course.

"What's a word for when you can't shit?" I asked after the usual amenities had been observed.

Lori is an expert in these things. "Constipation," she immediately said and I could only admire her lack of word freeze. That's my expression for this condition; it's sort of like brain freeze when you eat ice cream and is self explanatory, I should think.

I also lost the use of my fingers, in that they can't find the right keys anymore. I could blame the keyboard - and have - but I suspect it's the arthritis and the crooked fingers.  Strike the F key and hit the G instead., lol.

Whatever the reason, it sure does make writing an adventure and between the word freeze and the fingers, I'm usually in a very bad mood. Far be it for me to inflict my bad mood on any innocent blog readers who might have popped in and for some reason want to keep it a secret ;-)  I would never want to contaminate them because we need to be strong and vibrant and alive these days when everything around us is changing.

So, there you have it. It's taken twice as long as it should have to type this post, so I'm going to stop now. I'm saving 'The Empty Brain Syndrome' for another post.

Maybe in about 3 months.