Monday, April 30, 2012

In A Bad Mood Much?

Yep. That would be me. Or at least that's what I'm going to blame it on. Of course, it's very disheartening to think of myself as being in a permanent bad mood. And you'd think that would be enough to snap me out of it. Uhhhhh....NOPE!

Or maybe I'm just a BITCH. (Stop snickering!)

Honestly, though, NOTHING is quite right. From the time I get up in the morning until I finally close my eyes at night, I can find plenty to gripe about. My brother says I need to get laid. I say that I just need to be put in charge of everything... and I mean E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G.

For instance...

Last night I rented The Descendants from Redbox. It's been forever since I watched a really good movie. I simply don't think they make good movies anymore. That's my chief complaint. But for now, I'm going to complain about The Descendants. Now I know the movie was up for an Academy Award or George Clooney was---or maybe both. Hell, I don't know. But there was a lot of media hype about this film and it was supposedly wonderful.

My take? It was okay. Nothing about it GRABBED me. I kept waiting to be grabbed and it never came.

Let's take it apart.

First, let's talk about Clooney. When I see a Clooney performance, I expect something very intense. Even when he's in a somewhat comedic role, I expect intensity. I don't expect a Syriana everytime, but I expect to be impacted somehow by his acting ability. I want to be grabbed. And I also want to grab--mainly his ass.

This time? It was a big fail for me on both ends of the grab. Who the EFF dressed him for this part? The pants made him look boney and as if he had NO ASS!!! The lack of color in his clothing was a big turn off for me. Okay. So you're thinking: "But Tess...that was the way it was supposed to be. He was a colorless-no-ass-kind-of-guy." Really? Yeah, yeah. I get that. But still...I watch Clooney to see Clooney--not just the story. And yep, if they had put him in a nice peach-colored Polo and a pair of tight-fitting jeans I would have been much more satisified. AND!!!!! Couldn't they let him take his shirt off at least once?

I mean, wasn't part of the storyline about his wife having an affair and how bad it was to do that to him? Sure he worked all of the time. But if I had to pay 35K a year for private schools I'd work all the damn time too! My point is this: Would it have hurt to display a little Clooney stuff? I mean, he's portraying a nice guy whose now dying wife was unfaithful to him and he just finds that out. As it was played it comes off as well...
colorless-no-ass-guys deserve to get cheated on.

And WTF did the whole trust and land sale thing have to do with anything? I kept thinking that the affair was somehow going to end up being a conspiracy--something I could get into--something that would grab me. NOPE. And it was nice to keep the land, but... MEH.

It definitely was way cool to see Beau Bridges and Michael Ontkean after all these years. Even if they didn't let Ontkean have a speaking part. And let me just say that the whole voting party with the cousins made no sense if they had no rights anyway. I did like the idea of the little girl possibly going camping with her dad on that pristine beach at some point, though.

All in all, I'd say the movie was a C. I never shed a tear. My heart never warmed up. I was never on the edge of my seat or so engrossed that I couldn't get up and go to the bathroom without putting the movie on pause. Yep, it was worth the buck-twenty-five I paid at Redbox. Definitely NOT worth a pay-per-view fee of four or five bucks and NO WAY IN HELL worth the price of a damn movie ticket!!!

I still love George Clooney. And I loved the dude who played Sid. My fave scene was when Grandpa belted Sid. LOL So give it a watch if you haven't. It's a rainy afternoon kind of movie. Meh.

That's it from me today. See you next Monday!!!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

I'm writing

I wish I hadn't squandered all month last month. Burn out does that to you, though. However, I'm now facing the challenge of finishing this book, deep spring cleaning my house, prepping my younger daughter for a three day camp experience with her classmates, and packing for my trip to the east coast. All of that is supposed to be finished by Sunday. I think I'm in over my head.

The spring cleaning is urgent because my ex mother in law is coming to town to watch my kids and generally be a grandma. She lives several states away, so this is kind of a big deal. Plus she hasn't ever seen where the girls live, since the divorce. She needs this. The girls need this. I, however, don't.

She's a neat-freak. And when I mean neat-freak, she's kind of OCD. As in, she once bought a floor model fridge and then complained that there was a tiny, non-dented scratch on the BACK of the fridge even though that's against the wall. She also came over to my spotless home, not only cleaned by me, but then cleaned by Merry Maids before my daughters' birthday parties and proceeded to wash my french door, on her knees, in front of the entire family. Yeah, I was embarrassed. And who I caught crawling around my kitchen floor on hands and knees with a toothbrush and a bucket of sudsy water.

To drive her crazy (I was getting back at her for deliberately undermining me with my children several days in a row, so it was warranted, folks), I gave her gas fireplace a thoughtful look and calmly told her that the tiling above the vent was slightly uneven. That was years ago. She still frowns when she looks at it... or so the girls tell me. It was genius and also mean.

Now she's coming to my place. My place which the previous owners decided to panel the living room. My place that where it isn't paneled is burnt orange and used to have a wallpaper boarder around the chair rail but which I tore down and never pulled off the tiny pieces of paper that stayed behind (because I'm a working single mother, damn it). My place that daily has a fight against ants and where most of my furniture--while, antique--are hand me downs. Hey, I left the guy and my furniture in order to get out. I'm not picky about my "new to me" stuff. My place where I rarely intrude on my daughters' bedrooms to disapprove of their sense of order.

I think this is going to get ugly. I know I'm not messy. I'm just casual. She's not. She literally bends over every day to poke her carpet where it meets hardwood so that the pile looks right. I have peeling linoleum at the base of one of my kitchen cupboards. I also cook and she doesn't. My kitchen is used and while clean, doesn't have the never been used granite or seamless stove tops.

Can you tell where my biggest concern is? Obviously not the away camp, the long flight to the east coast, or the fact that my book deadline is breathing down my throat. Nope. It's the ex-mom.

I think I'll clean like I would usually for this time of year. If she feels compelled to keep going, at least I won't be home to witness it. Too bad they don't sell valium over the counter.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

"I don't have time to write!"

When I started writing, I had a two-month-old baby. When he was four-months-old, he came with me to my first RWA chapter meeting, where I breast fed him throughout the entire thing to keep him quiet. That was a long, long meeting. What amazed me, at the time, was the everyone seemed to have the same complaint: "I never have time to write."

Okay, some of these were self-explanatory. There amount of free time in every day is precious and finite; if you spend that time quilting or working on a scrapbook, then no, you're not going to have time to write. There are things we all have to do, like walk the dogs and make sure the house is clean enough to live in. Some people have kids, some don't, and if you fall into the former category, congratulations, you probably have even less time to write. Back in those days, I heard women saying things like, "My husband goes to bed at eleven, so I stay up until one, and then I get up at four, before the kids get up at six, so I can steal some writing time." I used to think, "That's nuts, if you want to write, you can find time without sacrificing sleep." I was doing it, and I had a newborn.

After a while, I realized that people weren't saying, "I have no time to write," but "I have no time to write in the way I want to write." I've heard, many times, "Oh, I can't write. I like to sit down with a glass of wine and no distractions." Or, "I can't write, I don't like where our computer is set up. Anyone could read over your shoulder." The fact that there is no place, on earth or outside of it, that exists without distraction, or that they were writing in hopes of publication (where anyone could read it!) never seemed to crack through the obstacle they'd set up for themselves.

Times... have not changed. This weekend, I sat on a panel at a library event. A woman in the audience asked, "When do you find time to write?" I gave her my honest answer, that you should look for the time to write the way a drug addict looks like a place to shoot up. Here are three ways I've stolen time during the days of my career:

  1. Get some kind of recording device and talk out your story. When my son started preschool, we chose one that was, for some stupid reason, a forty-five minute drive into the city. One way. I made use of the drive time by buying a digital recorder and just talking my prose into it. When I'd get home, I'd slap on some headphones and hastily transcribe it. You'd be amazed at how quickly your story fleshes out that way. The most common objection I hear about this one is, "I can't, because I can't stand to listen to the sound of my own voice." If this is you, then I say unto thee, "Deal with it."
  2. Keep a notebook with you at all times. If you're waiting at the doctor's office, or you're on your lunch hour, you can write in the notebook. No, you will not look weird. I've seen people balancing their checkbooks in line at McDonald's. You will look perfectly normal.
  3. Take one of your hobbies out back and shoot it dead. I love hobbies as much as the next person, but let's get real. Do you "not have time to write" because you'd rather be doing something else? Do you really have to finish that massive cross-stitch project this year? Or spend seven hours a week scrap booking vacation photos? Can you sacrifice any of the time you use on those activities to write? Okay. Then do that.
I don't think it's easy for everyone, in every situation, to find the time to write. But I do think that the moment you say, "I can't, because," you're saying a lot more about your desire to write than you are your schedule. If you want to do something, you can do it. You just have to find a way, and every time you throw "can't" in there, you're throwing up another brick wall directly in your own way.

And please, no getting three and four hours of sleep a night because you think it makes you dedicated. It just makes your brain tired. And there will be plenty of time to have a tired brain once your career is firmly established and you've inevitably over-commit yourself to all the great ideas that sprung up while you finished the first book.

Stop looking at me like that. I don't get up at four in the morning to write. I get up at four in the morning because that's the only time the bathroom is free.

Monday, April 23, 2012

A Nice Evening

Last night I had all three of my kids with me. None of us had seen the middle child in two months. And with the oldest working and not at home except to sleep and eat and the baby boy, lol, in school, and then up in his room listening to
music all of the time... Well...we just don't spend a lot of time together.

But last night we were together along with the middle child's fiance. We had five hours of non-stop laughter. I guess absence does indeed make the heart grow fonder. Usually these kids do nothing but argue with each other. Now that they aren't in each other's face constantly, they get along. LOL I love it.

The addition of the fiance was nice too. He's really sweet and funny. I didn't think anyone would "fit" with my family. But he does. And I am so happy about that. He seems to love me silly, too! He's not shy about showing his affection either. He's a hugger for sure. lol

So some things just work out, don't they?

I'm rushing out the door this morning and wanted to say hi to everyone. I missed blogging last week and have promised myself to NOT dare miss another. I've always liked blogging and chatting with commenters. So next week?? Be prepared for a nice long rant of some sort. lol It's about time I did that!

I hope everyone is happily reading, writing, and editing.

Thursday, April 19, 2012


I feel like discussing them today. That's right. I'm an ass girl. Or a chest girl. I also really like thick wrists and blunt man-fingers... I have a thing for height and shoulders too. I also like men with a little extra on them. Something to hold onto.

Well, okay, I just like men. A lot. I like almost all of them in some way or another. Bald? No problem. Glasses? Who cares? But I digress. This is supposed to be about asses. Why? Because I feel like it.

The best ass I ever saw was a man in a tailored suit. I love men in suits. See above. I was in an airport and this guy with THE PERFECT tailored suit walked by me. Now I have to admit to noticing that he was pretty. Very pretty to begin with. I'd already noticed him. Hell, I'd been staring, to be fair. Then they called the flight boarding sequence and the guy whipped off his jacket and I saw... THE ASS OF ALL ASSES! Unlike most suits, this one was low rise on a pair of beautiful lean hips. The fabric lovingly cupped and draped, without a wrinkle or excess fabric anywhere. His shirt was tailored and tucked neatly into the waistband.

Geez, I nearly groaned. Out loud. I don't know if it was the tailoring on that perfect butt, or the fact that his suit looked high fashioned and negligently hot as hell, but it worked for me. Right to the top of his slightly too long curly brown locks. I would have tapped that in a heartbeat. Like morse code, baby.

And that was two years ago.

I just spent the last thirty minutes on Pinterest looking for hot butts. I've decided my favorites are all in suits. So someone explain to me why I chose to live in an area of town where suits are not standard dress code? I need a be-suited ass in my life. Preferably a tailored one with just a little extra padding on his body so I can hug and hug and hug that man when I look up into his eyes and see him smiling at me.

The end.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Winner of Taryn Elliott's Giveaway!

...and that winner is Chrisbails! You'll be contacted soon about your prize. :)

Thanks so much to everyone who stopped by Taryn's interview!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

So it's my turn again

I almost forgot to post today. Can you believe it? I swear there's a mouse running around in my brain, darting in and out of mouse-holes. At least, that's how it feels to never quite grasp my thoughts long enough to hang on to them.

I'm going to blame spring break. Both the kids are home. One of them is sick and on computer probation. The other had a friend spend the night and is going to her house tonight. Next week is Romantic Times and I'll be there unofficially. Hey! Maybe I'll be reporter girl! Yeah, that's it! I'll send you a report on what's going on from RT. Although my version will be from the bar and the rooms. I'm not actually in attendance there, so it'll be like a cozy reporting opportunity of people around me. You'll have to get the goss of the major stuff from somewhere else. LOL.

I'll try not to embarrass myself too much. That's not an easy fete for me, as you all know by now.

Have a great rest of your week.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Changing things Up

Sometimes 'life' just gets in the way, doesn't it? But I'm here, back after a long break, and trying to get back into the swing. Change is in the air and I guess that's appropriate considering it is now spring. I've been in a terrible writing slump lately. Hoping that changes soon. Started a new project a few days ago which is weird since I have several works in projects sitting on my computer just begging to be written.

Started thinking about why I felt the need to do something new and the only explanation I could come up with was that I needed to tackle a different project. Something fresh to jump start my writing.

Several years ago, I found myself in this place and talked with a writer friend who told me that often a simple 'switch' of genres could jump start a stalled brain. It worked. At the time, writing paranormal seemed utterly foreign to me but I was desperate. I gave it a shot. In the end, I whipped out Feral Moon (a shifter menage) and I've never looked back. The change up worked and before I knew it I was not only writing paranormal but my contemporary stories were 'fresher'. Make sense?

This is where I am now. Yes, I AM writing another shifter story but this one is different in that it isn't linked to any of my other series. Not sure at this point if this one will become a new series or just a single title and unconnected but that's okay. At least I'm writing again, right?

In other news: My shifter menage (linked to Jaguar Hunger, EC) is coming soon in Jaid Black's Ellora's Cave Anthology, Something Wicked This Way Comes, Vol. 2. My story, Tinderbox, is just one of several hot, hot stories. It's available now through pre-order at Barnes and Noble and Amazon and can be purchased at Ellora's Cave on May 2. YAY!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Oh Go Blow It Out Your Ear!

The place I lived before was a resort area. The place I live now is an even bigger resort area. But there is something definitely different about this one.

Actually, lots of things. But I won't get into all of that today.

One thing I've noticed is that people here are constantly blowing their horns at the people in front of them at stoplights or stop signs. I don't get it.

Now I'm generally a pretty attentive person. I don't linger at stoplights. LOL But I constantly have people blowing the horn behind me. Even if I am second, third, or fourth in line. And it scares the crap out of me every damn time.

What's up with these fools? Are they nuts? One would think that in a vacation area things would be slow and easy. And when people are walking--just pedestrians--they walk right out in front of cars. Don't even look. But in a car? They have no patience at all.

I'm pissed off! I'm going to start putting down my window and yelling out to the person behind me: