Friday, January 28, 2011

Insomnia and Lily Harlem

I’ve been freakishly busy—and loving it—for the past fortnight. I had an art project and a few book covers to create, and I wanted to get it all done so I didn’t get insomnia, waking in the night to worry about finishing. So yesterday I finished my projects and allowed myself to relax. I had one of those times where your whole body just sags—love that feeling; I know, I’m weird—and, due to my brain knowing it didn’t have to function much beyond getting me from the desk to the sofa, the old grey matter kind of went a bit addled.
I went to bed, intent on sleeping the night away, but I stirred at 2 a.m. Author Lily Harlem popped into my mind and also the thought that I had got the wrong end of the stick with regard to a conversation we’d had earlier in the week about blogging. My brain woke up, and by 2:15 I’d convinced myself that I needed to contact Lily immediately to make sure I hadn’t messed up on blog dates.
I got up, emailed Lily, and felt much better, but my mind was still hyper alert. I opened a manuscript and, much to my surprise, wrote 3K before anyone else in the house got up. I expected to be trawling Facebook or blogs, propping my eyes open with matchsticks until I felt tired enough to crawl to the sofa and catch a couple more hours of sleep, but noooo, my lovely Victorian hero decided he wanted me to get on with his story—one that I haven’t picked up on for too long to mention.
After taking my youngest to school, battling bracing winds that were so cold I swear they had a mind to rip my damn face off, I then expected to come home and crash. No. I cleaned my kitchen then sat at the computer and wrote some more, this time in the heroine’s point of view. I’m now back with the hero, and d’you know, I think I may well finish this book before the day is out. I had been naughty on this one and in places wrote [INSERT SEX HERE] before moving on to the rest of the story. Insomnia allowed me to get all those inserts done—LOL @ inserts, ahem—and now I can move on to the end of the tale.
So, what have you all been doing this week? And what do you do when insomnia grabs hold of you and won’t let go?
As I was woken by thoughts of me letting Lily down—I’d have been very upset with myself if I had done that—and have now realised since she emailed back that I hadn’t needed to worry at all, that I hadn’t got any wires crossed and all blog discussions were as I had previously thought before my stupid brain told me otherwise, here is the lovely lady herself with some competition news for any authors reading this. Do you have this weekend spare to write a quick short story for a competition and get it subbed before Monday?
The heat is on! Challenge yourself. DO IT! And good luck if you do!
You can also download a free book by Lily. Just click the Madam President link. I'll continue with my waffle after Lily's post.

For those of you who don’t know me I’m an author of contemporary erotic romance writing for Ellora’s Cave, Total-e-Bound and Xcite as well as featuring in numerous UK and US anthologies. I got my big break into writing by entering an erotic fiction contest with the first steamy story I’d ever written titled Madam President. Much to my delight I won first place which gave me the confidence and the enthusiasm to continue with my naughty stories. So, with that in mind, I just want to tell any aspiring writers about the Love Honey/Filament Magazine’s latest competition, but you’ll have to be quick – closing is Monday 31st Jan. Hey, you probably weren’t doing anything over the weekend anyway!
Submissions can be sent by email and will be judged by Violet Blue, Sex Educator, Blogger, Author and Editor of erotic anthologies. Not only could you win (first prize is £100 with two runner-up prizes of £50 each) you could also get published in one of her anthologies due for release later this year.
Basically you just need to write the most fantastic, filthy, luscious, dripping, delightful piece of fiction ever. Of course your story needs to meet competition guidelines and ideally suggest the theme water and/or be inspired by one of the photographs on their website.            
Then once your sexy words are down send your entry in the body of an email (not as an attachment) to by 31 January 2011, 5pm GMT, subject line Filament fiction competition.
Be sure to check out all the official details by following the link below and while you’re there sit back for half an hour and listen to a FREE podcast of ‘A Classic Wedding Night’ - written by myself and read by Love Honey’s Alice – ever wondered what Mr and Mrs Darcy got up to on their wedding night after their carriage slipped from view? Wonder no more…phew, its steamy stuff! Or if you prefer just download it for FREE in pdf version. It might give you some naughty inspiration.
Good luck and don’t forget to spell check!
Lily Harlem x
Winner of the 2009 Love Honey Award for Erotic Fiction


So this week saw the exciting moment when Black Cougar Curse, written by Tess and myself, made its appearance onto Ellora's Cave's front page. Tess has been like a fart in a colander, diving here there and everywhere, chatting and blogging and promoting. I've been writing blog posts for next week's part of our blog tour and ensuring we have places to park our bottoms each day of the week, and I think the pair of us are exhausted. However, that heady rush of release day always keeps you going, and we're just so damn happy our book is out there that my face might crack if I smile any wider. We've had so many comments on the cover and how Sam makes women feel, that I've been amazed. You've got to admit, though, that's one stunning cover.
So if you've been waiting for this beauty, HERE it is, and if you buy it, please know that you have our sincere and heartfelt thanks that you have supported us.
Have a wonderful weekend, everyone! And don't forget to tell me what you've been up to this week and how you cope with insomnia! I need to know these things!


Lily Harlem said...

Oh, Natalie, you'll feel tired later after a busy day on no sleep, and I know what you mean about the wind too, we even had some snowflakes in ours this morning!!

Your Victorian hero seems very demanding! Yum!

Good luck to anyone who enters the competition, and if you read Madam President or listen to A Classic Wedding Night do let me know what you think.

Lily x

C. Zampa said...

You wrote 3k words in the middle of the hours of the morning? Good for you! That's a fantastic way to work through insomnia!

Congratulations on the book release!

And nice to meeet you, Lily Harlem!

Natalie Dae said...

I can feel lethargy creeping up on me now, Lily, but I'll get a second wind and keep going. Determined to try and finish this book.

We didn't have snowflakes in our wind (that sounded just plain wrong, didn't it?), more like these pathetic little balls, really small ones like sand grains.

Mind you, the sun is shining outside my window here, but I bet it's a deceptive brightness. When I got out to collect little one from school, you can bet my face will freeze again.


Natalie Dae said...

I did, C.Z. It was so silent, what with no traffic sounds either, that it was like I was the only one on the planet.


Shoshanna Evers said...

Wow, you are a very prolific insomniac! When I can't sleep - every night after the teething tot wakes me up, and he falls back asleep but I can't - I lie there and consider getting up and writing, but I never do. Maybe next time I will now that I know it's actually possible, LOL

Regina Carlysle said...

First off HAPPY RELEASE DAY!!!!! Here's wishing enough sales to flat knock your socks off.

I actually know you had some insomnia since I wrote you around midnight (US time) and you responded immediately. LOL. Thanks for the emergency 'title help'. I don't have insomnia very often. It usually happens when I just can't turn my brain off and I often write during those times. I WILL turn on the computer but find my friends are all SMART and LUCKY and SLEEPING. Good incentive to pull up the ms and see what's up. Often I'll just tweak scenes though.

Tess MacKall said...

"Tess has been like a fart in a colander"

I'm gonna have to think about that one. what? LMAO

Maybe I don't need to think about it after all. lol

Hey, Happy Release Day to us, Happy Release Day to us, Happy Release Day to ussssss...Happy Release Day to US. HA...there, I sang as I typed it too. hee hee hee

Insomnia. Lately I haven't had it. Too tired to get it. Body has been forced to shut down.

Send me some of your writing mojo woman. lol

Natalie Dae said...

Yes, Shosh. Get up instead of laying there hoping to sleep. Amazing how much you get done without anyone else around!


Natalie Dae said...

Same here, Reg. I intended to just tweak but ended up writing. My body has started to ache now, though.


Natalie Dae said...

LOL Tess.

Fart in a colander is an Brit saying, then? I thought everyone knew that one hahaha.


Anny Cook said...

The one night this week I had insomnia it was because my brain insisted on playing out the first scene for the book after Phantom's Rest.

Finally I got up, hand wrote all the pertinent details and went back to sleep. Dropped right off. So I guess that worked!

So far this week (and last) I have 21K on my new wip, Shadows on Stone. It seems to be rolling along.

Natalie Dae said...

Fabulous news, Anny! Can't wait to read it.

I might try what you did. Put a notebook by my bed, scribble down what's keeping me awake, and hope I get back to sleep.


Lily Harlem said...

So much fabulous writing going on by everyone this week - thousands of words - YAY! - long may it continue.

Fart in a colander - nope never heard that one but it creates a wierd image in my head!!!!!!!!!!

You tired yet, Nat?

wendy said...

Congrats Natalie & Tess on the book release!!!
I have insomnia so bad i went to the doctor and got sleeping pills but my brain over rides the sleeping pills some times so i get up and read i love to read this weekend i will clean house read books and visit with my new grandbaby.

Delaney Diamond said...

I read Madam President a couple of months ago. I absolutely loved it. It's so well-written. I can see why you won.

Lily Harlem said...

Ah, thanks Delaney. Glad you enjoyed it x

Madison Scott said...

I have been soooo tired lately too. Congrats on the recent release, ladies!

She said...

For insomnia I just watch TV until I fall asleep. My worst insomnia comes on nights when I have to be up at a certain time. I don't have it much but I'm usually so tired I can fall asleep and stay asleep for 5-6 hours then I'm up and raring to go.

Natalie Dae said...

Lily, You've never heard of that? Hmm. I might have to look it up and see where it came from now LOL.

I got tired about 9 when, in the middle of watching our nightly series prog, I kept dozing off LOL. I slept last night right through. Lovely!


Natalie Dae said...

Oh my, Wendy. The brain overriding the pills. That's a pain!

Enjoy seeing that new grandbaby, love!


Natalie Dae said...

Thanks for visiting, Delaney!


Natalie Dae said...

Thanks, Madison! Hope you get some decent sleep soon.


Natalie Dae said...

My hubby has that happen, She. He just can't sleep whe he knows he really does have to be up at a certain time. Poor man.