Thursday, July 28, 2005

RWA Reno -- the virtual tour!

Tomorrow is closing day on our new condo, so I am in a packing frenzy, trying to wrap up as much as I can so we can get outta this rental and into our own place ASAP. We are SO ready to be there! Can. Not. Wait!

Since I'm still moping about not being at the RWA National Conference this week, I think I'll live vicariously through a handful of other writers who are being kind enough to share the experience:

Alesia Holliday is feeling the love, people. Jill Shalvis reports in as well--with pictures! A couple of the WriteMinded bloggers are posting conference news, as are new authors Karin Tabke and Megan Frampton. Brenda Coulter is most impressed with the Reno Hilton room service thus far, while Carolyn Jewel reports in with news that she has, well, no real news to report. I must admit, I am waiting eagerly for reports and photos from the hotel lounge, because let's face it, that's where the *real* conference action is!

Naturally, the pithy and cool PBW remains unimpressed with the whole conference thing. Me, I am a giant conference dork. Put me in a hotel with 1500 other writers and I turn all wide-eyed and geeky. My friends and I dish excitedly about who we've seen, where we're going next, who's having the best parties, who's giving the best workshops, and how the hell we're going to jam all those free books into our bags when the time comes to head back home. I always come away from the conference with new friends, new ideas, and usually more than one great new industry contact. Maybe someday I'll shed my pink Pollyanna shades for some jaded coolness, but I ain't got there yet!

So, tell me, tell me! Have I missed any other good conference report blogs? Post them in the comments and share the luuurve!

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

ARC de Triomphe

I've got ARCs! Real, honest to goodness, bound and printed ARCs for my December book, HEART OF THE DOVE. I believe this is a career first for me! For midlisters like moi, Ballantine usually sends out loose page proofs for print reviews, as printing actual ARCs is an added production expense typically reserved for publishing house stars. But this is verra cool!

Oooh . . . pretty!

As you can see, they are beautiful! Of course, they do contain some typos--about 8 affected pages--since the advance copies went into production before the page proofs were corrected. Grr. I hate typos!

I have a handful of these lovelies, which will be going out to Very Special People. (At his request, I did give one to the hub--which, God bless him, he actually took with him to read on the bus to work the other day! He tells me that at chapter three, it's already a lot better than Robert Ludlum's THE BOURNE SUPREMACY! *G*)

I also plan to reserve a couple copies to use as prizes in my newsletter drawings. If you'd like a chance to win a signed ARC (which, hey, could be worth about $6.99 cold hard cash on eBay one day!) make sure to join my reader newsletter!

Thursday, July 21, 2005

RWA Conference Blues

Visit a few romance writer blogs this week and it's a given that the topic on just about everyone's lips is the RWA Conference in Reno next week. Sigh. For the first time since 1996, when I was a greener than green, unpublished, clueless conference newbie, I am not attending.

I decided to forgo Reno for a number of reasons, mainly that I hated to lose the nearly three weeks writing time (one week to prep, one week to attend, and one week to decompress afterward), but also because I have developed an allergy to smoke and really could not deal with a casino/hotel location. I told myself that I wouldn't even entertain the idea of going, unless the impossible happened and I ended up a RITA Finalist.

The impossible happened, actually. And although I'm thrilled to have been nominated (and I so would LOVE to be there for awards night jitters and the alternate panic/hope that assails one as they sit in the finalists row, holding their breath as the winner is announced) I still decided to stay home. I hope everyone takes lots of pictures.


July just isn't the same without RWA Nationals.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Up with the dawn

John took the 6am bus to work this morning, so I am up early, enjoying the quiet of a new dawn with a cup of strong coffee and a Special K bar (vanilla crisp, very yummy) before I dig into more page proof review on HEART OF THE DOVE.

I should know better than to click on CNN and risk ruining the peace of a new day, but old habits die hard and I just read that the London police have ID'd the four bombers from last week's horrific attacks. They're kids--one 18, two in their 20s, and a 30 year old. They're also all dead, by their own design, which I confess does not make me the least bit sad or sympathetic. I just don't know what is wrong with people that they would be driven to kill and maim, particularly in the name of God. But it's been going on for thousands of years, so I don't expect it to change anytime soon. I am not a religious person (I'm swayed more by "proof" than "faith" I guess you could say), but any God that would encourage the harm of others in his name is no God I'd ever worship, no matter what brand of religion is being sold.

And while idiots like the London four are throwing their lives away in senseless terror acts around the world, John's daughter is back in the hospital, coping with another setback in her post-transplant recovery. Day before yesterday she was admitted, then transferred to ICU for tests and treatment of some type of internal organ distress. We're not sure what the diagnosis will be this time, but she's been stabilized and hopefully will be feeling better soon.

It's her I'm thinking of as the morning sun glances off the trees in the backyard, warming a clear blue sky above. I can smell the crisp brine from the Piscataqua River in the distance, and a white gull sails overhead, enjoying a view of the coast that I can only sit on the deck and imagine. Life is good. What a shame to take any second of it for granted.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Page Proofs

Page proofs arrived for HEART OF THE DOVE. This is the final step before the book goes into production for its November 29 release. Getting closer all the time!

DOVE Page Proofs

Monday, July 11, 2005



Houdini somehow freed himself from the cage! Of course, this was nearly an hour AFTER I called animal control, but since the rescuer hadn't yet arrived, there is a small chance I won't be charged for the call.

Perhaps the only thing more irksome than eating $125 for a squirrel rescue is eating $125 for a CANCELLED squirrel rescue. :-/

Sorry, hon!

Squirrel Update

Wildlife control is on the way. A mere $125 bucks to get Houdini out of the feeder. Sigh. John nearly choked when I told him that. Actually, I think he muttered something about the .22 rifle in the closet, but I chose to ignore it.

More to come, I'm sure . . .

Where there's a will . . .

Came home from errands this morning and discovered that our backyard bird feeder is, contrary to advertising, NOT quite squirrel-proof. This is a first; we've had the feeder for about two years without a single incident . . . until today. I have no idea how this idiot got in there. Unfortunately, neither does s/he. Guess I'm off to call wildlife control for a rescue mission!

I hope they will come armed with heavy-duty gloves and wire cutters to free the poor thing. Please cross your fingers for a happy ending!


Friday, July 08, 2005

London 7/7/05

My deepest sympathies, care, and concern goes out to everyone in London, England. Yesterday's bombings were an unconscionable act of cowardice by people who have no right to call themselves members of the human race. If there's a hell, surely there is a special pit of agony reserved for terrorist scum.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Live8 links to nhnovelist

Yesterday my hit counter spiked into the ozone. Here's why:

Live8 Screenshot Posted by Picasa

If you can't read the tiny picture, it shows my June post on the Brad Pitt TV interview and the info he shared about's efforts to end world hunger. How cool is THAT?!