Writing

What’s the Point?

Our actions should have points to them. Characters in books generally have a point—an arc that shows where they’ve been and where they’re going. But sometimes I feel like nothing has a real point, or we’ve covered the real thing with glitter to hide the underlying problem. Here are things that I can’t quite understand. What’s the point?

Giving free t-shirts to participants in walks for the homeless. Ummm. Not sure I get this one. I have five kids who have participated for years at their school. They get free shirts and walk around the school to help the homeless. First of all let me say quite clearly that our family volunteers and gives plenty to our local community action center. I’m not being insensitive here. I’m just wondering if we couldn’t serve the homeless a little better by actually giving them plain t-shirts or the money that it costs the companies to make them. Wouldn’t that serve the homeless a little better? I get that it’s publicity, but do…
Read the Rest…

2014 Social Media Marketing (Yeah, for Books!) – What’s Your Plan?

Denny (PortRoyale)This post has a bit of snark in it so be warned…

And yeah, another title for this post could be: How to Overwhelm and Entertain in 1000 words or less…anyway…:)

I hang out online an average of 90 minutes a day. And no, it’s not 90 minutes that I could have spent writing, or cleaning or doing something else. I am deliberately ‘hanging’ out because the source of information that is most readily attainable is online. It is NOT on TV (well, to me, I hate television news, cable o r network), it is not on the printed page (although, I do miss when back in the day, I’d spend an entire Sunday at a  cool brunch spot on the north side of Chicago, reading the Sunday New York Times and Chicago Tribute – it was so relaxing and so Zen of us:) – and its not only on Facebook (Internet, yes, but not the only source of information…
Read the Rest…

Writing Lessons: What a New Shirt Taught Me About the Muse

“I came here tonight because when you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible.”

Susan-Mermaid-avatar   I had a “fashion” moment last Saturday.

I’d been to the hair salon for a cut and color – an absolute must before a major holiday!  I’d driven with bestie Colleen to Danbury for shopping.  First, I said, let’s stop for a bite to eat.  Then, I promised, we would attack the mall and our Christmas lists.

But, as I crossed the parking lot, I realized:

The shirt I was wearing didn’t feel “good” on my body anymore, It was too short for the current styles, And it was faded.

We must detour, I insisted.  Just a quick stop at JCPenney, I promised.  Yes, I typically take several hours to decide on anything, but this will be different!  Zipped…
Read the Rest…

NaNo for you, but NoNo for me

Susan-Mermaid-avatarThat’s right.  I didn’t do NaNo this year.  The final days of last November brought on a sly, simmering uneasiness about my health.  It was a feeling I couldn’t quite shake, but knew I ignored it at my own peril.  Yes, nineteen years with the unpredictable and unforgiving disorder of MS have taught me to respect my intuition – if you’ve got the shakes, Susan, for God’s sake slow down.  And, if you know me, I’m an all-in or a who-cares kind of girl, and I felt it unwise to  subject myself to another month of NaNo stress.  Writing is meant to be fun.  Why spoil it with another trip to physical therapy?

Instead, I embarked on an entirely different type of insanity.  One where *I* was making the rules (sort of).  In fact, I have been on a writing hiatus this month in order to preserve my sanity (what little I have).  And do you know what?  It sucks.

I’m…
Read the Rest…

Contemporary Romance Author Sugar Jamison Swims with the Mermaids

Denny's MermaidsI met Sugar this past summer at RWA Nationals in Atlanta. I don’t remember what we started chatting about, I just recall that I laughed and laughed and laughed some more. It was a very good first meeting. After that, I kept running into her (I swear I wasn’t stalking), and then I complimented her on the cover of her then new release and fabulous title: Dangerous Curves Ahead. By the end of RWA Nationals, I’d found a new bud and a new author I truly enjoyed. Today, she’s taking a few minutes to join us here at the pond. She also has a giveaway (all you need to do is comment to be eligible for a chance to win)! So let’s get started with an introduction and then we can dive into the questions, and Sugar’s fabulous responses. Enjoy!

photo 1

From her official bio: Sugar Jamison is a…
Read the Rest…

A Temptation So Beautiful

Susan-Mermaid-avatar

There are stories in my treasure chest that refuse to be completed, for one reason or another.  One, LAKE EFFECT, has bedeviled me for several years.  Gerald, the father, has never decided if he will be dead (enabling his rambling daughter to sell the house and move on) or alive (chaining her to a life of servitude, shuffling between the old house and the nursing home)?

Worse, what of my two lovers?  Nicole is a devoted girlfriend, with an overseas boyfriend.  She just doesn’t know he has wandering eyes.  Sam is being pursued by a girlfriend-wanna-be in relentless pursuit of his favors.  I’ve loved writing Desmond’s and Tara’s scenes – as the unfortunate foils for my hero and heroines, they’re both such worthless material as potential mates and so completely clueless.

Occasionally I struggle with midnight “monkey mind” as I wrestle again with the frustration of seeing this story complete and finding readers.  There are other stories I’m writing, or…
Read the Rest…

Blog Day: I have NOTHING to write about!

Denny's MermaidsOh yeah, you’ve been there. Sitting in front of the blank screen, knowing its your day to post and you’ve got absolutely NOTHING to say or you feel that you have nothing to say, or in my case, everything you can think of you’ve said before. It’s like a fog comes over you and all that you think is – I got nothing.

So since I have nothing and have no choice (I hate skipping a day) I decided to research the meaning of nothing…

So I started with the Wikipedia definition – and Jezus – it’s depressing:

Nothing is a pronoun denoting the absence of anything. Nothing is a pronoun associated with nothingness.[1] In nontechnical uses, nothing denotes things lacking importance, interest, value, relevance, or significance.[1] Nothingness is the state of being nothing,[2] the state of nonexistence of anything, or the property of having nothing. (But being a writer, I am gleaming something in the back of my mind…
Read the Rest…

Getting Into Character: Becoming Hazel

Mermaid CarleneHello Fishy Friends,

Right about now, this mermaid should be calling it a night. But I can’t stop tugging on the ends of my hair to see that the once light blonde ends I usually sport are now a cinnamon color. Since I’m sleepless in the land of auburn tresses, I’ve decided to post pictures of why exactly I’m living life as a red head.

It’s all in the name of writing research, getting into character to be more precise. The heroine in my current Work In Progress, Hazel, is a red head (think Victoria the First, of Twilight). I realized quickly that the best way to get into her head, so to speak, would be to experience life as similarly to her as I could. I went as far as to color my hair in a manner that I felt she would use, and being a very bohemian, earthy kind of woman, that meant something natural.

It came in really handy that I’m a…
Read the Rest…

From The Heart

Susan-Mermaid-avatarSeveral weeks ago I sort of volunteered to give a talk at our school’s annual faculty retreat. The day is filled with breakout sessions, much like the typical romance writing conference.  Usually, the experienced teachers are quick to propose their pilgrimages, their prayer retreats, their journey of faith through the study of art… anything that might help fill a day of Teacher Detention.  They’re the wise ones of the faculty:  they know how to fill time.  I’m not a popular teacher:  I sit in the peanut gallery.

So why, this time, did I put myself in the hot seat?  My work BFF, raised in the evangelical Christian tradition, summed it up:  “You have been Called. Do It.”  I thought for a second, told myself stop thinking, and shot off a possible topic to the organizer.

My proposal, on Finding God in the Midst of Suffering, was accepted immediately.  What? No argument?  No questioning?  No “gee, we appreciate your thought, but…”  Nope. …
Read the Rest…

My Summer Reading Log

Trying to keep my kids reading throughout the summer is like pulling teeth and performing a root canal. Not so for me. My favorite part of summer at the pool is reading. The only time my body comes into contact with the water is to hang on the ladder for ten seconds when I get too hot. Then it’s right back to the book.

My kids had to fill out their reading logs and keep track of the books they read, so I decided to do the same. So many times someone will ask what books I’ve read recently, and I draw a complete blank. It’s not that I didn’t like the book. It’s that I read too many of them to keep track.

Without further ado, here is my reading log: 1. BOUND by Erica O’Rourke 2. THE FARM by Emily McKay 3. GRAVE MERCY by Robin LaFevers 4. PUSHING THE LIMITS by Katie McGarry 5. MY LIFE NEXT DOOR by Huntley Fitzpatrick 6. DEATH, DOOM, AND DETENTION by…
Read the Rest…

Follow

Get every new post on this blog delivered to your Inbox.

Join other followers: