Hard work pays off Sunday, Dec 7 2008 

wreath04Tis the season – to be busy! With so many projects on the go its hard to keep things organized and on track. However, when you’ve got the motivation it can be a rewarding experience. Recently I began writing a western novel that I had hoped to get published via a New York publisher. I’ve revised that idea – not because its hard, or an out of touch idea but simply because at this stage in my career I don’t feel confident enough to win an agent over to my talents.

 

 

Having said that, I don’t think my writing is poor quality – I wouldn’t get published if it didn’t hold up to industry standards. No, I simply have come to the conclusion that the smaller publishing houses are a good experience and will help me create my name before I launch into a larger market so to speak.

 

 

If you get the chance, I highly recommmend you read the book The Career Novelist by Donald Maass. It’s an excellent read and it will help you figure out where you want to go. Having a plan for your career is invaluable and necessary. You wouldn’t start a business without a game plan, and your writing career is the same.

 

 

As an author you’re making a product to sell to the consumer. It’s a business plain and simple. Does it keep a person busy? For sure. Edits, rewrites, research, all take up time that you, the owner/author, must manage. I don’t believe that it should consume every waking minute but a good five hours a day shouldn’t be unheard of.

 

 

Am I guilty of spending more than that on the computer? Yes, I’m afraid so. What do I have to show for it. Three contracts ( The last came in yesterday for a full length western), my novella has been released, and the production on Master’s Mistress – my Viking romance – has begun. That however is a tale for another day. I’m learning how to manage my time, how to juggle being a full time mother, wife, employee for another company, business owner – I do my own craft thing – and writer with a bit more finesse.

 

 

Its not always easy but it is rewarding. When I hear back from a fan that my work has touched them, that they’ve enjoyed what I’ve written I’m grateful that I’ve been able to do that. I’m touched that as an author, my work is an inspiration to others. Busy – yes, insane – probably…regretting it? Not for a moment.
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Interview with Holly Walker, star of upcoming Novella Sunday, Sep 14 2008 

Welcome, today’s guest is Holly Walker, the heroine of Christmas For The Cowboy due out Dec. 08 through Blade publishing.

Hello Mrs. Walker, its a pleasure to have you with us today.

Holly: “The pleasure’s all mine. I’m glad to be here.”

Interview with Holly Walker

You’ve been involved with rodeo in some capacity all your life, what got you hooked on rodeo?

HW: I started riding when I was six, my grandfather got me started. I competed in 4-H for two years before I got the competitive bug. By the time I was nine years old I’d been touring the show circuit. When I went to the local rodeo and horse show my friend dragged me with her to watch the cowboys. After watching the speed of the barrel racers, the skill, the horses I began to think I’d like to do that. When I was ten I signed up for my first rodeo and never looked back. You could say the cowboys got me hooked.

Do you ever wish you’d done anything other than the rodeo?

HW: I’ve done a lot of different things. I’ve done rodeo, shown, you name it I’ve done it. But I’ve also got a lot of other skills that most people who see my buckles don’t know about. I’m a qualified seamstress; in fact I run my own sewing shop from the ranch. I run a bed and breakfast, and maintain the ranch by myself because Ty’s constantly away from home.

When did you meet Ty?

HW: I met him at the local rodeo the second year I was Pro Rodeo. I’d seen him before then, I knew the name, the family – you don’t walk in the rodeo world more than a day and not hear about the Walkers but a formal meeting didn’t come until I was a teenager.

What was it about Ty that’s kept you with him so long?

HW: His love. We were kids trying to live in an adult world and by the time we realized what was happening we’d already gone too far. Things haven’t been the greatest for a couple of years but I love him too much to just abandon him without trying to save our marriage.

How has the rodeo affected your marriage with Ty on the circuit 50 weeks out of the year and you at home?

HW: It’s put a strain where there wasn’t one. I love Ty and I know he loves me. But no marriage can survive weeks, months of separation without some connection. I don’t regret giving up the rodeo; I just wish that Ty would realize that he’s more than the rodeo. Doubts, lonely nights, fears, they’ve created a gap between us. He’s young, sexy as hell and there are a lot of temptations out there that no man in his right mind would be blind to – I just try to support him and enjoy the moments when he’s at home.

What made you come up with the Christmas Getaways?

HW: The rode is full of temptations and buckle bunnies who would be only to happy to crawl into bed with a winner. For me the Christmas Getaway is my way of giving Ty a chance to explore his fantasies, his desires for sex outside of marriage and still be faithful.

What’s different about this year’s getaway?

HW: A few things. An unexpected, unplanned pregnancy for one. I’m excited about the baby but I’m scared to. I don’t want to raise a child alone; I want to have my husband with me. This year that may not happen. When he learns of the baby, he may not choose us. When this week is over, our lives have to go back to some semblance of normalcy, and I’m not prepared to have an absentee father and husband any longer.

Thank you Holly, for sitting down with us today. Congratulations on the upcoming birth of your first child.

HW: Thanks so much for having me. Merry Christmas.

Friday, Sep 12 2008 

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An Upcoming Contest Tuesday, Jul 15 2008 

Gina Ardito is holding a contest. Check it out on her blog for all the details!

Help A Redhead Out! Win a Free E-Book!
http://ginaardito.blogspot.com/2008/07/announcing-help-redhead-out-contest.html
THE BONDS OF MATRI-MONEY available now
A LITTLE SLICE OF HEAVEN available now

Promoting Awareness about The Wild Horses in US Thursday, Jul 10 2008 

Normally, I’d be promoing and author or editor or publisher or talking about my journey through publication but today I thought I’d touch on something else. As everyone is aware, I’m a member of several fan fiction groups. One of which is dedicated to writing about a television western that was on in the late 80’s early 90’s (An episode was actually interrupted when they announced the first gulf war).

Recently they announced they were hosting a blogathon to raise funds and awareness for a worthwhile organization. Wild Horse Rescue Assoc. has recently come into another 120 head of mustangs. (I’ve enclosed a link at the bottom of this blog to take you to the sites) and its a startling, and rather saddening predicament.

Humanity is not kind. For thousands of years, human beings have been the alpha preditor, and even now when we’ve become ‘civilized’ we still maintain that. To know that animals that have run wild for centuries are now a problem saddens me. Europeans brought the horse back to North America, and from those few Spanish horses the Mustang was born.

Tough, hardy, quick minded, these animals are a vital part of American history and yet, they are rounded up by the thousands and taken to stockyards where they await their fate.

For some it’s an adoption into a loving home where they are cared for and respected. For others their fate is to be humanly put down. I read an article recently about wild horses and the budgeting programs that are run by the federal governement which means that because of a legal loophole they can legally put them down.

For more information you can follow the following links and see news coverage and several organizations that are trying to change this scenerio.

http://www.azcentral.com/news/articles/2008/07/08/20080708kpnx-mustangs.html
http://tyrblogathon.livejournal.com/
http://www.wildhorserescue.org/
http://www.equinerescue.info/links.html

Feel free to comment or voice your opinion. While there are facts within this, some of it is strictly my opinion.

An Interview I did Saturday, Jul 5 2008 

This is the guest interview I did in May on Deadly Vixens blog. Feel free to check it out and leave a comment. An update on it – the novel that I offered and excerpt from has been contracted and is due out in March of 2009.

http://deadlyvixens.blogspot.com/2008/05/our-visit-with-patricia-bates.html

Fan Fiction A Mod’s tale Tuesday, Jul 1 2008 

Reader\'s Choice Award for DDKellyAnn Bessa AKA Devil Doll (DD) has a BS in Management from Cardinal Stritch University, and currently works as a human resources consultant for an investment firm. She has been in fandom for nearly ten years as a writer, mailing list owner, community moderator, and webmaster.

In addition to running several archives, she hosts and maintains websites for a number of fan fiction writers. One of her first childhood crushes was Batman, and she still works several hours a week at her local comic book store, and participates in the online feminist comic fan community. In the few hours a day she isn’t online, she rides her horse, does yoga, and overloads her DVR with cheesy TV shows (even though she always falls asleep while watching them).

One of those fandoms is X-Men. She currently runs the Wolverine and Rogue Fanfiction Archive (WRFA), where I personally have over a hundred of my stories posted, as well as several Yahoo groups, a LiveJournal, and not to mention her work with the Organization for Transformative Works (OTW).

She’s an incredible woman who has managed to create a place for the fan fic author to post their work. Devil Doll has for the past couple of years also provided a home for the Reader’s Choice Awards on her WRFA archive. She’s won, with no surprise, The Best Mod category twice and is understandably proud of her accomplishments.

I personally have submitted works to her for a four or five years now and have gotten a sense of what she looks for as a moderator. Tough but fair, DD as we call her, is one of the most level headed mods out there. She’s answered my questions, given advice freely, and hasn’t treated me with disrespect. When I created the Reader’s Choice Awards I have to admit and I’m sure she’d agree that the first year was a minor disaster. What had started off as a chance to see if the interest was there snowballed. This year however, DD came back with some awesome suggestions, tips, and rules that I never even thought of.

For us mere writers, having a moderator like her is a great bonus. She’s allowed me and others to develop skills and to give and get feedback that is constructive without demeaning. Personally, I firmly believe that anyone who does what she does deserves an award. I don’t think I could handle all the bad attitudes people have when they don’t get what they want.

To find out more about Devil Doll, see the upcoming July issue of the newsletter. She’s talking openly and candidly about herself and her work with the OTW. Until next time, happy writing.

Real Life and Your Dreams Wednesday, Jun 18 2008 

For the past few months I’ve been a stay at home mom. My days were filled with housework and taking care of my son. Then when I got the great news that my book Master’s Mistress was to be published life hit fast forward. I didn’t know where I was going or how I was getting there, the excitment and adrenaline were pumping through my blood faster ‘n a Nascar Rally.

However, reality has set in. Yes my books coming out next year which means that when the time comes I’ll have plenty of edits, rewrites, tightening, and such to do before I can really focus on the things I want to. This hasn’t dulled my enthusiasm at all, in fact it’s only made me want to do more. So here I sit, one manuscript that I’ve finished and are doing edits on, and two that I’ve barely started. I’m waiting to hear back on my Christmas novella – on pins and needles I may add – and all this must be done in my spare time.

Finances and time have come to a parting of the ways. So, to keep a steady income coming in I’ve had to reassess my stance. That means going back to work. I must admit I cheated – I’m working from home, providing day care for two boys. They get along well with my son, and we don’t have any issues.

What does this mean for my time? Well it means that the time before I’d spend writing I have now to watch the boys. Time I could spend in teleconfrence or on the computer doing research means that it’s field trips to the library. It does not mean that I’ve stopped writing – I’ve just prioritized to include the boys.

When real life intrudes on your dreams it can lead to dismay and discouragment. I won’t let that happen for two reasons. First of course being that writing is a part of me. I can no more stop writing than I can spread wings and fly. To lose that would mean giving up a part of my identity. And the second reason is of course, its good for me. I’ce come to realize that I can’t spend 16 hours a day on the computer – its not good for me, for my family, and quite frankly I think it would kill the love I have for writing.

If you’re thinking that you can’t mesh your dreams with your reality think again. Prioritize, set limits, and above all don’t give up. Keep the faith you have in yourself and in your dreams. Be it a single leap or a series of tiny steps the path that you follow to reach your dreams has no difference, it simply means that you’re following that tiny voice within you that belongs to your heart.

Good luck and have a great day.

Fan Fiction – Real or not Monday, Jun 9 2008 

With the upcoming interview with the moderator of one of the fandoms I write in, I thought this week we could touch on a topic that is as controversal as it could be. I’ve heard every argument out there about fan fiction being a copyright infringment, about it being a useful tool to a writer, and everything in between.

Being an author of fan fiction I have to admit that using another person’s character to write a story is a harmless tool. I don’t see the difference in borrowing a well known character to write a story and borrowing a pattern to make an afgan. As long as the writer/creator doesn’t make a cent what’s the harm? Personally, if people are so enamored of a character or show that they’re willing to spend their free time (Something that there isn’t much of in today’s world) writing about it, take it as a compliment.

A fictional character is just that a piece of imaginiation by some really intelligent, creative people. Stan Lee is one of the most renowned super-hero creators of all time and with good reason. He’s come up with some of the most famous characters of all time such as the X-Men and many many more. Each of his characters belongs to him, but should the public have a right to play with them? That’s the million dollar question that has caused some serious debate. Fan Fiction borrows a character or a place and lets an author explore it before returning it. No harm in that, I say.

However, fan fiction is just that – fiction based upon an imaginary person. It’s when it goes the other way that it becomes an issue in my humble opinion. Now there are certain lines I agree should never be crossed. For example I’ve started to read some fan fiction and stopped before I’d even finished the first page because the author has drawn the real person into the story. We’re all exposed to the gossip and rumors of the tabloids and the celebrities, but really we don’t know them as a person. How can anyone say that John Doe would do this dispicable thing or that good deed if they don’t know him personally.

Heat Wave Contest Now Open Thursday, May 29 2008 

Heat Wave IN PRINT-Big Contest!

Midsummer Night’s Steam stories are now available in paperback from Samhain or Amazon to enjoy at the beach. The stories are bundled in several anthologies including HEAT WAVE which features three of the Erotic Muses authors.

To celebrate the release, the HEAT WAVE authors are having a contest. The prize is a tote bag with summer items: suntan lotion, a beach towel, a baseball cap, sunglasses and a margarita glass. All you have to do to enter is stop by EROTIC MUSES blog every day this week (May 26-30) and learn about these great stories! Leave a comment Tuesday through Friday for a chance to win. To clarify: YOU MUST LEAVE A COMMENT ALL FOUR DAYS-TUESDAY THROUGH FRIDAY IN ORDER TO BE ELIGIBLE.

The winner will be announced the following Friday, June 6, giving latecomers a chance to enter. If you don’t find out about the contest until the second week, that’s okay…go back to the previous week’s posts and drop a comment.

This week each of us will profile our books, including Jamie Craig, the author of Liaisons in Jubilee. The other stories in the anthology are Blackberry Pie by Bonnie Dee. Second Wind by Dee S. Knight and Hunk of Burnin’ Love by Veronica Wilde.

http://samhainpublishing.com/print/heat-wave-print

http://eroticmuses.blogspot.com/

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