Wednesday, March 28, 2012

I'm Over At...

Literary Moms today. Shilling my book. Talking self-publishing. Regular publishing. Why writing near a 'fridge is just a plain ol' bad idea. Check it out.

Monday, March 26, 2012


One of my favorite romantic comedy's is How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days. It's brillant on so many levels, but this time when I watched I came at with a writer's eye. I just finished judging contest entries. Out of the five I read, two started in the right place. One writer had minimal backstory and infodump. I love him/her for it. But as the opening scenes of How To opened I realized this movie did the same thing.

Yes, the little magazines float by and you see snippets of her acting out the research for her articles. Yet in the first ten minutes you know the goal, the motivation, and the conflict on the horizon.

Now I'm not saying being succint is best for every story. Some need to start slow. Like Gods in Alabama by Joshilyn Jackson. With the writer's eye I can tell you the NOW story doesn't start until the very bottom of page two. But up until that point she's building you up for the rest of story. The tone. The underlining conflict. Heck, characterization and understanding how the character ticks. For the life of me I can't see how she could have grabbed me with "Burt had his feet propped up on my battered coffee table...." VS. "There are Gods in Alabama..." *Now if you haven't read this book please do. It's a book that I wish deep down in my writer's bones that I wrote. That some good writing.*

Now what am I really saying?

Don't think your job is done once you've written a fabulous hook. Make me stay around for the story. You know how you can do that? By not boring me to death with backstory or infodump. Please I'm asking you as a reader. Just don't.

Am I guilty of this?

Of course and I'm not reformed. Yet. I'll just bore you with backstory later. Just not in the first chapter. I promise.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Probably Shouldn't Jinx It, But....

I'm writing. Haven't been because the writing well dried up. Probably has nothing to do with me going from 0 to a gazillion mph in the past month with this self-publishing thing. Nope, doubt it seriously that there is any correlation.

But back to the writing...what I missed the most? Finding out all the character's secrets as I go. I do a lot of front work so I won't hit a wall mid-way through the ms. (I usually do anyway. I call it the chapter 4 curse.) Still, I get to be the fly on the wall as the story happens. I get to witness all the bravery and vulnerability. I get to see two people fall in love and know why.

Happy sigh. Some days it's good to be a writer.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Promo, Guest Post, Giveaway!!

I'm over at my CP's blog, being low brow and ruining the youth of today. (I kid.) (Just a little) Shilling See Megan Run. Stop by, leave a comment. Here.

Monday, March 12, 2012


It has been two months since I last confessed...

Today I'm not going to talk about things in books that makes my eye twitch. I'm going to talk to you folks about a very serious issue. I'm going to talk about my addiction. I'm so ashamed to admit this to you guys. But I really feel this post just might help someone who like addicted to the Internet.

Yes, I know, shocking. But see it started innocent enough. I used dial up—which I've now learned is a gateway to worse things, things that any human should never stoop to—I'd check my e-mails. I'd do research for my book. Then I started to frequent this popular forum called The Cherries. They'd post topics and leave links. I knew better. I've...heard about how one link can lead to another, but it was just so tempting to see the hoopla of LOLcats. And then I did something that I now regret.

I upgraded to DSL.

I'm sorry I need a moment....

Things start to blur at this point. I could now watch videos on Youtube. I could, I'm so shamed to say it...Blog hop. Yes, I know. I feel dirty at how many blogs I left comments on and never returned to. Okay, okay, I was being promiscuous. I'd been burned so badly by dial-up I had to find a way to comfort myself. Those long wait times to upload pages that only left me with “error on page” messages. I needed something to help me forget those dark and horrid days.

I digress.

And then I started my own blog. I built up a clientèle and started to push my own rambling thoughts to others. I referred those poor innocent people to my blog roll that would only introduce them to the same addictive behavior I'd learn to love and hate.

These past few days have been enlightening for me. I didn't have 24 hour access. I couldn't leave fly by night comments. I couldn' in. I started to have withdrawals.

But when I offered my neighbor to have their way with me just for an hour of their bandwidth, I knew I'd hit rock bottom. I was a NetHead of the worse kind. I could see myself tap dancing on the corner to scrounge up enough change to pay my monthly bill. I saw myself doing unspeakable things to my modem just to get it to connect. I didn't want to be that person.

But today folks I'm here to tell you that it's not worth it. Don't be like me, a NetHead. Oh, dear baby jesus, I'm a NETHEAD. You can stop the addiction now. Don't be peer pressured to click that link. I'll have to live with what I did for a bandwidth. You don't.


Hi, my is Melissa, and I'm addicted to the Internet.

To find out more information on Crystal Net check out the archives.


Little Ms. Diva(who is 8 years old): My tooth fell out.

Cynical Mother: Aren't you too old to have teeth still falling out?

LMD: See? *shows mother bloody gums.

CM:*gags* Eew. Where is it?

LMD: Under my pillow. So, when I wake up the Tooth Fairy will leave me money.

CM: Hmm.

LMD: How much do yo think she's going to leave me?

CM: Little Ms. Diva, the Tooth Fairy doesn't exist.

LMD: *narrows her eyes* Then why is there always money under my pillow AFTER I put my tooth under it?

CM: Me or Nana takes your tooth while you are sleeping and puts money there.

LMD:*eyes are still narrowed, but walks away*

CM*filled with guilt.* It was time. She's eight. God, I'm going to have to tell her about Santa soon.

LMD: Then when I was at my grandma's house who left me money then? Huh? Do you have an answer for that?

CM: She took your tooth. Everyone knows the Tooth Fairy doesn't exist. It's up to me to tell you these things. Plus, I'm broke, so now is a good time as any.

LMD:*narrows her eyes and makes the "I'm watching you motion"*

CM: *throughly amused that she even knows that motion.* Little Ms. Diva, I'm telling you the truth.

LMD: We'll see who is right.

Night falls, CM sleeps on her decision to crush child's dream....
CM: *at 5 o'clock in the morning goes to an ATM withdraws $20, breaks the $20, and leaves three dollars under LMD pillow while she slumbers.

I tried and couldn't do it, because next it will be Santa. I'm not ready to take Santa away. So, what's a few dollars under a pillow? Yeah, she's going to be like 'in you face' all day, but I think I can take it. I couldn't take the pouting, the tears at the realization that no, the Tooth Fairy, is fake. And that me and all the people she loved has lied to her all these years. What else have we lied about? Nope, I'm not a dream crusher.

When did someone break the news to you? Or when did you break the news to your child?

Thursday, March 08, 2012

Romance Conventions: The Previous Relationship

Often in a romance the previous relationship is some sort of horrible failure. The other, as it's thought, was abusive, terribly lacking or some other thing that proves the hero/heroine is the right one. Rarely, is it ever the other person just didn't fit. The relationship just didn't work out.

Romance is very much about the over the top. It's just not lust, but uber lust. It's not the chance meeting, but love at first sight. It encapsulates and exaggerates how it feels to fall in love. The insecurities, the depth and challenges that stand in the way. It's why I love the genre.

It's sometimes why I find it frustrating. Of course, if you can't find what you are looking for as a writer, you write it.

Saturday, March 03, 2012

FYI: Southern Fried Chicas

Ok. The joke about this blog is that no one is actually living in the south.

But, if I'm not leaving words of wisdom here (snort) I'm over at Chicas. You really should check these ladies out. I became a grandfathered in as a member/blogger because I posted comments all the time. I still feel honored to be a part of such a smart group of ladies.

My next post is, well, up.

Friday, March 02, 2012


You know I think I might have split personalities or maybe manic depressive when it comes to writing. One day I'm up. My writing is brillant. I'm a genius. The next day MY WRITING SUCKS. Who do I think I am? What made me think this might be a viable career? And these characters...don't get me started.

And then of course the next day I'm a literary genius.

Go figure. I'm having one of these days. I'm sure I'm going to have a rocking writing time later, but it's sitting my butt in the chair and letting the words come. Be it crap or golden or golden crap.

I think a lot of it has to do with I have someone waiting at the other end of this ms. My career as a writer won't be over, but if I don't do well I'm going to miss a great, great, great opportunity.

Again, I ask what made me think this might be a viable career?

Because I love it isn't washing today. And I know I'm not the only writer to deal with these feelings. So, I'm just going to tell myself I Am a Great Writer and slink back into the shadows.

Thursday, March 01, 2012

A Heads Up

March 12th there will be a Contest, Contest, Contest. You'll get a chance to win See Megan Run and a $15 Amazon gift card. All you'll have to do is drop by Aimee Duffy's blog, leave a comment. That's it. That's all she wrote.