I like them, I really do

This 3 novella anthology has been a very interesting experience. I’m really trying not to say much about Wild Wild West for a couple of reasons. A., no telling how much will change by the time all edits are done and B. it’s so far ahead of release that it’s not really a good time to post excerpts and so on.

But I really like the people in this book. Each couple sets the tone for their novella and they all have a different mood. Romantic, playful, and the deeper emotions. I’m having a lot of fun with them and I like the way they surprise me. I like the overall arc of the thing, how each mood flows into the next. Wish July 07 wasn’t so far away!

Head. Hurts.

There are too many people in my head right now and the only effective form of excorcism is to Finish The Book. I’ll be delivering a bunch of projects in a row, thank God, so that should ease the pressure up there.

Had an awful moment yesterday when I remembered a line I’d written recently and COULD NOT REMEMBER which bloody book it was in. (Miss Lonely Hearts, it turns out) Head is too full when I can’t keep things straight. Of course, this is why I have files of notes and scenes and potential scenes alongside the story, synopsis and blurb. Because I don’t trust my brain to hold it all.

If I start sounding a little incoherent as I approach the finish point (and then again and again), you’ll all know why. All these people need to go live someplace else!

Why shorts?

So I thought I’d do a blog entry on why I like to write short stories, even though there is virtually no market for them. First of all, there is something really satisfying about a project you can complete in a single sitting. Novel writing is like running a marathon, it’s all about endurance. Even a novella is not going to get finished in a single session. But a short-short, I can sit down and write one and be finished! There’s a lot of satisfaction in that.

Also, it’s good for my creative self. It allows me to experiment, stretch, try different things or simply explore ideas that aren’t big enough to sustain a longer work. It’s a very refreshing change of pace for me, like writing a poem. It flexes my creative muscles in a different direction and lets me come back to novels and novellas refreshed. It does something to sort of “reset” my brain in between longer works, too.

And I like the idea of being able to provide short reads on a semi-regular basis to offer something of value to readers, and I’m a person who likes to write stories about what happens to characters before or after the “main” story. Before I started in on the book that’s currently being shopping around, I wrote a short story about the main characters. The novel then developed in a totally different direction from what I’d initially imagined, but it let me put them together and see how they interacted and that helped me flesh out the novel. I went into it with a new depth because I went back in time to before the novel started with them, without cluttering up my book with backstory.

Finally, the exercise of writing a short story affirms something very important: my process works. It may not be like anybody else’s process, but it’s my process and I can trust it. It works, every time.

Off to write some more pages! The plot is thickening and the characters are starting to feel the burn as I hold their feet to the fire, heh heh.

Romantic Times reviews are in!

And I’m so, so relieved. Thank you ED for the sneak peek! The Gripping Beast garnered a stupendous 4 and 1/2 Stars! WOW! Here’s a quick quote from reviewer Faith Smith. (Wish I could post the whole thing because it rocks, but it’ll be on the RT site soon enough.)

“…this book is more than an erotic bedtime story — it’s an entrancing tale of romantic love, with sensual scenes and characters that will live in readers’ minds for a long time.”

Catalyst also received a very positive review and 3 Stars from RT reviewer Cindy Himler.

“This is a fun, pleasant read. Veronica is a well-written character with insecurities that will be familiar to many…And the entry of Sebastian, the pet from hell, as a protagonist, is a lot of fun.”

She said fun twice, I take that as a good sign! :mrgreen:

News from around the web!

Cheyenne McCray’s Seduced by Magic is a Rhapsody and Doubleday bookclub selection! Hop over to congratulate her if you haven’t already. Also this is Monday and she posts those cowboy pictures on Mondays…

Diana P. has unveiled the Secret Society website! Very cool.

Doug at Balls and Walnuts needs guest bloggers. Because otherwise the internet would suffer a dire lack of posts on sex and food when he goes on vacation.

So there’s some news. Me? I’m trying to stay cool while this big, bright yellow thing hangs in the sky (apparently all the rain has been sent elsewhere) and get page count.