Friday, January 27, 2006

What do you like in screwball comedy romances?

WHEN I write, I write what I term "screwball comedy romances." Imagine Grace from Will and Grace meeting Mr. Right at all the WRONG times. My problem is finding a balance between the comedy and a true conflict that will challenge the characters but not be so serious that it is at odds with the humor. My WIP, THE WEDDING CURSE, is currently floundering because I can't get the right balance. At first, my conflict was too shallow - they were basically arguing over the same thing over and over again. Then I made the conflict more serious but that didn't work well with the short, comedic nature of the book. Aaarrrrgghhh!!

So what attracts you to humorous books? What kind of conflicts for a modern man and woman - neither of whom are looking for romance or even marriage?
Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Do You Like Fantasy?

You know why I love Gena Showalter books? Because she knows how to write fantasy.

1. Intelligent, resilient heroine
2. Stong, dependable hero who usually has a troubled past
3. Two people who fit - who make each other complete and help heal emotional scars
4. A man who knows how to pleasure his woman beyond her wildest dreams
5. A woman who knows how to give her man exactly what he needs (even if he doesn't know that he needs it)
6. Villains who are truly villainous - evil, creative, creepy, strong - real challenges for the hero/heroine
7. Women who don't need or want to be rescued but who will accept a partner
8. Settings full of imaginative twists on old legends, new creatures and quests
9. Wonderful description that puts us in the scene
10. Sexy and fun banter between characters

If you like this kind of fantasy, then you'll like Gena Showalter's HQN series. Her Alien Huntress has these elements but it's much edgier and darker. We go from sassy to smartass. ;-) But the heroes are so sexy they make the pages steamy. I am DYING to read about a secondary character in Showalter's upcoming book ENSLAVE ME SWEETLY (a superb book). I'm using all my wiles to make her write a book about him with ME as the heroine. If you have any affection for me at all, please tell Gena she should do so. ;-)
Monday, January 23, 2006


If you have not read any Gena Showalter, then this is a great book to start with (and then get all her backlist!). It's shipping from Amazon in February (or any day now), and is already shipped from Barnes and Noble. and you need to grab it up before it is sold out (which happened with one of her other books). Need to read an excerpt? Then visit Gena's web site and take a gander at excerpts from all of her books.

Here's a taste:
It was supposed to be an easy mission. An in and out job. A one day extraction.
His boss had fed him that line of bullshit, and Grayson James had foolishly believed him. Upon first entering this lushly green, sea-kissed land known as Atlantis, however, Gray realized he would have had better luck trying to sell a Fridgidaire to a goddamn Eskimo. At a goddamn jacked-up price.


Not a myth. Damn it. He'd hoped otherwise.

Gray scowled. In one hand, he held a beeping, miniature GPS system programmed from coordinates found in a map. An actual, honest-to-God map of Atlantis his boss had discovered. Right now, the GPS signal bounced off the earth's magnetic core, helping him navigate his way through this Atlantean jungle. In the other hand, he gripped a machete. The sharp, silver blade hacked at the thick foliage blocking his path.

No, Atlantis was not a myth. It happened to be home to the most loathsome creatures he'd ever encountered. And as an employee of OBI, the Otherworld Bureau of Investigations, he'd encountered plenty.

Made him wonder why he'd even joined the agency.

He knew the answer, though, and it wasn't because he'd (secretly) watched Star Trek for most of his teen years and knew how to speak Klingon. "Heghlu'meH QaQ jajvam," he sighed. Today is a good day to die.

When he'd learned to his horrified shock that there actually were other colonized worlds in the vast expanse of the galaxies, he'd left his job as a detective with the Dallas PD and began searching for a Men in Black type operation. OBI finally contacted him. He'd signed on immediately because he believed fiercely in the need to learn about these otherworlders and protect his own planet from them.

How could he have known that the most fearsome creatures of all resided here, on his own planet? Simply buried beneath the ocean, protected by some kind of crystal dome?

As he dodged a stray limb, he ground his teeth together.

"Atlantis," he muttered. "Code name Hell."

You won't be disappointed in a Gena Showalter book.
Wednesday, January 18, 2006

For Dana

My friend Dana has been having an interesting time lately. So here's a special picture just for her. I hope it brightens your day. ;-)
Tuesday, January 10, 2006

The Mask Comes Off

And Betty's real dream hunk is...THE DONALD!!
Sunday, January 08, 2006

Sauce for the Goose

Okay, here's a taste of my own medicine. I admitted on another blog that I once was brainwashed into thinking Bernie Kopell was sexy as Doc in THE LOVE BOAT. Lord, I can't believe I just admitted that. Okay, I was in 7th grade. Give me a break. We all have dark secrets from junior high we wish to keep buried.

The Man Behind the Mask Behind the Mask

Betty has been claiming that Brad Pitt is behind the Nicholas Cage mask in these pictures, but I've discovered that this is just another mask to hide her REAL obsession. Would anyone care to guess who that might be? I shall post this scandalous picture soon.

Woo-Hoo: Battlestar is Back!

Battlestar Galactica opened it's newest season Friday night. Wow! What an excellent episode - except that it ended!! I can't wait for next Friday.

The show just gets better and better. Every episode seems to add a new layer for us to think about, question, gape at. And I love it that the Cylons are not this easy to hate enemy. The emotional and ethical complexity of this shows makes it one of the best dramas on TV. And this episode adds a real doozy: do you have the moral right to take a life if that life threatens the greater good of your group? Is assassinating a bad leader justifiable? The show is also paralleling some of the important issues we're facing in America - especially the issue of torture. The Pegasus and Admiral Cane embrace torture as a means to gain information. They view their Cylon prisoner as a thing. Her imprisonment has made her long for death. In contrast, we have the Galactica and Commander Adama who, though still mostly seeing Grace as a thing, still treat her humanely. Ultimately, the issue isn't about the enemy; it's about the captor. What does our treatment of those under our care reveal about our values?

President Roslin is nearing her death, and I'm anxious to see how they resolve that. I certainly hope they don't kill off Laura Roslin. I'm wondering if they find her a nice Cylon body to download her conscious into. Or if she's revealed to be a Cylon. I still have my suspicious about Billy.

We'll just have to tune in to find out. Dang it!

New Hunk

Jason O'Mara is an Irish actor currently starring on InJustice, Firday nights at 8:00. Previously, he was on THE AGENCY - an excellent show with an outstanding cast about the CIA. I don't understand why it was cancelled - and of course, they cancelled in the middle of a story arc, leaving us hanging.

InJustice is about a privately funded group that investigates legal cases where the convicted person is innocent - they try to prove it. The network reran the series premiere on Friday, and I was very impressed. It's funny, gripping, and touching.

O'Mara does an excellent American accent, and plays a tough guy (former cop) with a sensitive side. Kyle McLachlan is also in the show.

Gena and Jill Exonerated?

Well, I came across yet ANOTHER picture of Betty and Nicholas Cage - one that shows just how long this relationship has been going on. Nicholas is definitely in his early 20s here, as he and Betty share a Coke. That's pretty intimate, folks. Perhaps Betty has not been so truthful about her mysterious past?
Saturday, January 07, 2006

Betty and Nicholas

My dear friend, Betty Sanders, has a secret passion. As I've just been informed by Gena Showalter and Jill Monroe, Betty lusts after Nicholas Cage. Sure enough, after diligent searching through my photo archives, I have uncovered a revealing picture of the two.

Enjoy, Betty. And please, don't thank me. Thank Jill and Gena - they are the two devoted friends who wanted to make this happen for you. I am merely the instrument of their devotion. ;-)
Tuesday, January 03, 2006

2 More Reading Recommendations

I just finished Elle James' TO KISS A FROG. What a delightful and sexy book. Of course, I have always loved frogs, even as a young girl. I know that my fear of snakes would make people think I would abhor all things lizardy, but I only hate snakes. Frogs are simply too cute. In this novel, scientist Elaine Smith (major brain but lacks in social skills) decides to get out of the lab and investigate water pollution in Cajun country. There she meets Craig Thibodeaux working at his uncle's marina. He's a New Orleans' lawyer on vacation whose icy blue eyes and black hair make Dr. Elaine wish she had more social skills. Unfortunately, Craig has this little problem: a voodoo queen has turned him into a frog by day, and he only has until the next full moon to find a woman who will truly love him. This book is funny. If you're looking for a light read, then check it out.

My next recommendation is a faced-paced, sci-fi adventure by C. J. Barry: UNMASKED. Whoa! What a great book. I couldn't put it down on Sunday. I have a weakness for books about masked men - I was brainwashed by Zorro movies at a very young age. This book does not disappoint. Here's the blurb from C. J.'s web site:


To the merchants he plunders, he is the Ghost Rider of the Dead Zone. To sector law enforcement, he is a wanted space pirate. To the slaves he rescues, he is the savior laghato. To one determined female captain, Qaade Deter is serious trouble.

Torrie Masters had heard of the legendary raider, but she never expected to encounter him, especially on her maiden voyage for her family's shipping business. Nor would she have expected that beneath his black mask lurked an enticing man destined to challenge her in ways she can’t shoot herself out of.

But a great threat has emerged, one that leaves Qaade no choice but to join forces with the woman he believed was his enemy. A woman with a warrior's spirit—now entrusted with the fate of thousands, one pirate’s impossible dream, and the power to leave him…UNMASKED.

This blurb does not do the book justice because it doesn't capture the pace, the humor, and the grit of both characters. I really love it that Torrie can kick butt with the best of them. She's more than a match both physically and intellectually for this hero.

What's even better is that I've just discovered Barry's work, and she has a handful of books I've yet to read! Yay!
Sunday, January 01, 2006

I'm a Crabby Bitch

I admit: I love to bitch and vent. It helps me keep my rage in check. ;-) I need to get a hat, though, that warns people when I'm in such a mood. What do you think of this one? Or is it too subtle?

Hunk Alert: Josh Lucas

Inspired by Gena Showalter's Monday Hunk Picture, I've decided to post my own. Josh Lucas is the kind of actor you know will be around a long time. He's steadily building an impressive list of roles, but this weekend I saw one movie he probably won't list in his top 10 favorites: Stealth.

It was generally panned by critics, but I thought it was an above average action film. It had a fantastic cast, including veteran actors Joe Morton and Sam Shepard, and a focused, slick plot. Not a lot of character development or "save the world" type messages. It is what it is. And Josh Lucas is hot in it. He's also great in Sweet Home, Alabama with Reese Witherspoon and Patrick Dempsey.