Friday, January 23, 2015

My New Purse/Tote!

I love Grace Draven's books and most especially the cover of Master of Crows.  

Slam Me

So in 2 weeks our local theater is having a poetry slam. My daughter was invited by her teacher to perform (which I hope she will) and I think I'm going to do it also.

It's been a long, long time since I've read poetry aloud and I hate reading in front of people but I really like the idea of trying to do a performance piece. I'm thinking about what I' like to write/what I'd like to say.

In other news, an old friend has written a book and is asking me how to get published and all the ins and outs of the business. *sigh*  How do you explain to someone that their chances of getting a New York publisher interested in a shot in the dark when blindfolded and deaf? There are so many people out there who deserve to be signed by NY houses and aren't.

I feel like an old curmudgeon with this. I want to say your chances of getting an agent are a million to one. Your chances of getting a publisher even smaller. And your chances of getting an audience...well... only apparently if it's Twilight fan fic.

But I get it. I had that same dream for most of my life and I'm still heartbroken that it'll never be realized.It's not that a person writes for fame. But you write and just wish it's good enough to stand with the writers you love.

It's heartbreaking when it isn't.

Other news: Carolyn's birthday is approaching. Feb 1. She's finally going to admit the red hair is Miss Clairol. I'm trying to arrange a male stripper for her birthday surprise but somehow all the exotic man dancers I've contacted hear Carolyn's name and slam down the phone on me. So what's that all about Carol? Huh?

And I just realized when writing that we can't slam down phones anymore with cell phones. So what does a writer do? She snapped her phone shut forcibly. She punched the end call button. She huffed and disconnected the call. Misses something, doesn't it?

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

I Got a TBR Pile... How Exciting

This weekend I read Where'd You Go, Bernadette which was a popular book a few years ago. It's a really funny take on Seattle and Seattle culture but ultimately wasn't a very good book. After the Seattle insider jokes it went flat. Badly flat.

I started reading Just Kids by Patti Smith, an autobiography about her life with Robert Mapplethorpe. Really well written. Very enjoyable. I'm enjoying the image of a bohemian New York and how these two artists really became the artists they are. Very much a book that one absorbs and really experiences.

So about this TBR pile... I have a Kindle with more than 100 titles I haven't read. But none of them were really important to me. But right now I have To Paris With Love by Eloisa James. the new Rose Lerner book, the new Sarah Addison Allen book and a few more. And I'm excited.

With an ereader one can easily store titles and pay no attention to what's there to read. But having books that I want to read, that's such another story. I feel like I just emerged from a really long illness and now I have books to read.

But first I need to read more about Patti Smith's life before she discovered rock n roll.

It's really good.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Porn + 3

So last night at dinner during a discussion of my daughter's poetry writing, my brother accused me (jokingly) of writing porn plus three. I immediately pointed out that a. I don't write porn, I write romance and b. I don't write orgies.

Not orgies, bro said. It's porn with three extra chapters.

Chapter One (Plus): boy and girl cute meet. Porn ensues. Porn ensues for many chapters. Chapter Two (Plus): Boy and girl separate for some reason. Girl angsts. Chapter Three (Plus): Boy and Girl resolve issue and are back together. Porn continues and ends the book.

He was being funny but his comment wasn't. Not really. Because his porn plus three analogy really embraces a lot of books I've read. Although there is generally more story mixed with the porn, sometimes it seems as though the plot is being used to have a reason for the next tiresome sex scene.

Carolyn and I have both stopped reading most erotica and in a book like the Kylie Scott series where nobody is having sex beyond the first half of the book, well, cause for celebration.

Really bugs me that bro nailed that one.

Little notes: Watch the Jack Ryan movie last night with Chris Pine, Kevin Costner and Kenneth Branaugh. Costner has aged well (though balding on top) and Branaugh was impossible to take eyes off of. Not usually my kind of movie but I really enjoyed it.

Also watched She's The One. Horrible. Someone please stop Ed Burns from ever making another movie.

And over on Amazon, someone left a really comprehensive 4 star review on Losing Hope. I was delighted reading it. Complete stranger really loved my writing (but hated something I did...) but still. 4 stars and a lot of thought went into it. I'm a happy writer person.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Yanno ...

... if you're looking at our blog name in a link, it reads as "Two Old Farts Stalking Romance". Somehow, in a mysterious biological twist, my brain adds another 's'.

Weird, huh? And probably true.

I'm off to find a book I can review. I find I've already reviewed Play and just because you've read a book three times doesn't mean you should review it three times.

Have I reviewed Lord of Scoundrels? I'm rereading it now. Because it was time. And then, even though I've bought beaucoups of sale books, I'm gonna reread Anne Bishop. Specifically the duology The Shadow Queen and Shalador's Lady, because they are a great "underdog comes of age and wins the day" stories. Have I written about them? I love them. Lori will know, I'll ask Lori.

I must start using labels so I'll know what I've done. It might be a case of too little too late, though, lol.

Oh. Bookcovers. One must always provide bookcovers and maybe a link. (Forget the link. Damn Blogger won't let me arrange the bookcovers the way I want to, so I'm pissed. You have all the info though, title and author and they're all over the internet. Happy Hunting!  ;-)

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Crowdsource Me! Crowdsource Carolyn!

Okay, so Carolyn and I have talked it over and decided to start a Kickstarter ourselves. I mean seriously, we like to do all the happening things that other authors are doing and hate to get left behind. That's why later we'll be introducing our new MC/Rock Star/Xtreme Fighting series: Songs for A Fast Heart.

But back to the important stuff... We Want Your Money! 

So we're going to kickstart a new project in the hopes of fleecing unsuspecting dupes interesting discerning readers with our new genre: Viagra Porn!!  Tah-dah!

Drawing on personal experience (and the stuff we make up) we'll be writing about seniors who pop the little blue pill and then satisfy anyone willing to see hairy, droopy balls with a raging five incher. Oh yeah baby. What can be hotter than bald spots, liver spots and old dicks? Hell, I just got moist writing that.

So seriously...

Reading about that YA author and her Kickstarter campaign was interesting. I'd never give money to an author to help support her unless it was Jennifer Crusie and she wanted to pay for therapy to get over her Goddamned writer's block. But anyone else can suck my wizened balls.

Plus I'm cheap.

And poor.

Beyond that though... it seems that if a midlist writer loses a contract or doesn't do as well as s/he wants and is looking for other options, I'd have to ask if that person has looked seriously at their own career or writing. I mean, really looked at it.

Author writes book. Publisher sells book. Book tanks. Publisher releases author from contract. Author seeks other funding even though she uh... failed. Instead of asking other people for money to live on to continue a series that didn't do well enough, how about asking for money for writing classes? Improve your craft. Figure out why you lacked sales and work on that.

Am I being mean? Probably. But if you made burgers and people stopped buying your burgers because the buns are stale and the burgers down the street are better, then improve your business model, improve your product and try again.

Try Viagra Porn. It's new. It's hot. And for a $20. donation, we'll send pictures. For $25. we won't.

Monday, January 12, 2015

50 Shades of...

My 13 year old daughter is reading the 50 Shades trilogy. Both Carolyn and I have asked her to review the books for the blog but so far she's refused. We'll keep asking but I know her well enough to know she'll never do it.

But here's the thing: my girl isn't much of a reader. If she likes a book she'll read it, if it's part of a series then she'll read the series. But usually she reads below her level and she doesn't show a lot of interest in reading to where her competence is. So if she asks for a book, I'm going to say yes because I want to see more reading from her, not less.

I don't have much issue with her reading explicit sex because she reads 5SOS fan fic on Wattpad and that has explicit (and badly written) sex. So I know she's already been exposed to it. and with our relationship, we've talked about it and I know she'll come to me with questions or comments.

So my kid started reading the book and the first thing she said was "This is like written by a 15 year old girl writing fan fiction. It's not good." My heart applauded.

But she kept reading and we talked about it as she made her way through the book. Some of it she mocked but she read it daily and loved it. She texted me when I was at work to tell me that a part she was reading made her feel breathless. When she talks about the book she smiles like we're talking about a cute boy and she gets excited. Obviously the book has her aroused in part and it's written in a way that's addicting to a young reader.

I've been mocking 50 Shades since it became a phenom but watching my kid read it, seeing her so hopelessly in love with the story... it changes my opinion. I'm still not going to read it, I like to read books that have grace in writing and I know this one lacks that but I won't mock it again. Not now. Not seeing what it does.

I don't believe there's such a thing as bad reading. Even reading comics is reading and using one's imagination. It's all story telling and that's good. That's more than good, it's necessary. And this book, no matter what, is telling a story that a lot of women, my daughter included, want to hear.

So yay to 50 Shades for exciting a young reader. (And she's started Book 2 and has Book 3 ordered from Amazon.) Long may your cat of nine tails wave.