Tuesday, December 30, 2008

“We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year's Day.”

Edith Lovejoy Pierce

May your new writing year meet with much success!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas Week

I don't think I'll be getting much writing done this week, though I'll try to sneak a few minutes in here and there. I did manage to get in about 30 minutes worth late last night. Of course, when I only have a few moments, I tend to rewrite something that's already there. I really need to stop doing that! I can go back and edit later. Bad habit, so I guess I'll have to work on it.

Have a great week!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Well, I managed to send out one of my submissions today. A completed Christian romance that I am doing a little polishing on while I wait to hear back.

I have another query letter ready to go concerning a novel I wrote two years ago. I've only submitted it to one publisher~and it was rejected. I put it on the back burner for a while, trying to figure out exactly where this novel 'fits' in the Christian writing world.

Is it a cozy or a romantic suspense? That has been the question. I wrote it intending it to be a cozy, but, as many of you know, a novel has a way of taking on a life of it's own, and sometimes the writer is just along for the ride. All I know to do is to put it out there and see what happens.

I love writing these books and stories, but submitting them is always a challenge for me. I tend to write, rewrite, and the write again!

What about all of you? Do have projects out there being considered? How long, once you are completed with a project, does it take to really be 'ready' to send off to a publisher?

Friday, December 12, 2008

The Christmas Season

This is probably my favorite time of the year. My house is colorful and pretty, there are a lot of phone calls between relatives, we get little bits of snow spitting from the sky on windy days, and best of all, we celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

If things weren't so busy, I could probably be more productive in my writing at this time of year. As it is, I've been fairly lax since Thanksgiving, but I do find that this season provides me with a lot of inspiration for my novels.

I am happy to say that I have two submissions going out on Monday! One has been rejected by another publisher, and the other is on its 'maiden voyage'. Whatever the outcome, I am happy to have them on their way.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Seeds of Inspiration

Nothing would be more tiresome than eating and drinking if God had not made them a pleasure as well as a necessity. ~Voltaire

Do you ever get your writing inspiration from food? I've been thinking about apples a lot lately, as well as cooking with them, and they are playing a part in a new book I am developing. I find cooking to be a relaxing therapy when I'm 'stuck' in a particular part of a project I'm working on. Somehow, the act of measuring, mixing, etc., seems to act as a 'therapy', if you will, and I can continue with my work in progress.

Monday, October 27, 2008


Tony Hillerman, author of the Leaphorn and Chee mysteries, born May 27, 1925, in Sacred Heart, Okla., population 50, passed away yesterday in Arizona. He had been in declining health for several years, but still loved to write.

I've always enjoyed seeing interviews of Mr. Hillerman. He was a very down-to-earth type man and very modest about his success, always giving any ideas for inspiration to those he felt it was due.

More than just a mystery novelist, he was a decorated combat veteran of WWII, a journalist, and devoted husband and father.

Goodbye, Mr. Hillerman. Thank you for you contribution to the mystery world. You will never be forgotten by your fans!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

New To Me

The concept of 'republishing' a book from the POV of a certain character in the story is totally new to me. I read this article yesterday on romancing the blog . It was recently submitted by Brenda Coulter, romance author.

As a writer, I have to admit that it is an interesting concept, but as a reader~I'm not sure I'd be interested in seeing the story 're-hashed'.

Have you ever read one of these novels? Did you enjoy it? As a writer what do you think about the concept of doing this to your own novels?

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Writing Thoughts

I never had any doubts about my abilities. I knew I could write. I just had to figure out how to eat while doing this. ~Cormac McCarthy~

Writing is its own reward. ~Henry Miller~

Writing is the hardest way of earning a living, with the possible exception of wrestling alligators. ~Olin Miller ~

Almost anyone can be an author; the business is to collect money and fame from this state of being. ~A. A. Milne~

Thursday, September 25, 2008


"The best time for planning a book is while you're doing the dishes."
— Agatha Christie

Like Agatha, I get a lot of ideas when I'm 'doing the dishes'. Of course, with wet, soapy hands, it's a little hard to write them down!

When do you get your best ideas?

Sunday, September 14, 2008


If you write fiction of any type, you have to write dialogue. I was surprised to learn that a lot of authors find this the most difficult part of writing.

It has always been my favorite part of writing a novel. When I am writing, there are constant conversations going on inside of my head and I seem to have trouble inserting the descriptions in between them! I'm not saying that my conversations always 'work'. I do many, many re-writes.

In surfing the Internet for writing advice, I came across the concept of recording your dialogue and then playing it back to yourself. Have any of you ever done this? Did you find it effective?

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Contest Deadline. . .Just Ahead

The deadline for the Tony Hillerman short story contest is coming up quick! Here is a link with the guidelines, if you still want to enter:


Me? I'm still working on my entry, and hope to have it polished up in time.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Romancing the Romance

When did the romance novel begin? Wiki says:

One of the earliest romance novels was Samuel Richardson's popular 1740 novel Pamela, or Virtue Rewarded, which was revolutionary on two counts: it focused almost entirely on courtship and did so entirely from the perspective of a female protagonist. In the next century, Jane Austen expanded the genre, and her Pride and Prejudice is often considered the epitome of the genre. Austen inspired Georgette Heyer, who introduced historical romances in 1921. A decade later, British company Mills and Boon began releasing the first category romance novels. Their books were resold in North America by Harlequin Enterprises Ltd, which began direct marketing to readers and allowing mass-market merchandisers to carry the books.

Have any of you ever read Pamela? I have heard of it, but never read it.

Wiki also says:

Novels in this genre place their primary focus on the relationship and romantic love between two people, and must have an "emotionally satisfying and optimistic ending."

I have occasionally read a romance type novel without a happy ending. Somehow, it just isn't nearly as satisfying. Maybe it is too much like 'real life'. I feel the same about movies. There are some movies that just wouldn't be worth watching if it wasn't for the ending~where everything finally worked out for everyone involved.

What about you~do you have a favorite book that doesn't have a happy ending, but you love it so much it doesn't matter?

Sunday, August 24, 2008


Writing romance. . .

We all want to fall in love. Why? Because that experience makes us feel completely alive. Where every sense is heightened, every emotion is magnified, our everyday reality is shattered and we are flying into the heavens. It may only last a moment, an hour, an afternoon. But that doesn't diminish its value, because we are left with memories that we treasure to the rest of our lives. (Author unknown)

Friday, August 15, 2008


How many of you enter writing contests? I've only been on the Internet for a couple of years, so I'm just discovering how many of them there are. I've been considering this one:

The Tony Hillerman Mystery Short Story Contest


Writing a western novel has always intrigued me, and adding a mystery to it seems perfect!


Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Writing Influences

What do you write and who do you read? Do your favorite authors influence how you write? Do you try to emulate their style?

As a fairly new novelist, I strive to improve my writing on an almost daily basis. Some days I think I succeed, some days not. I find that writing mysteries adds another element of thought to my work. They make me 'use my brain' more and I enjoy reading how other authors do that sort of 'brain work' themselves. Some days my plots seem impossible and other days, just plain boring! Some days I scrap the whole thing and just work on an in progress romance, a genre that I enjoy writing as well.

I grew up reading mysteries non-stop. I was a teenager when I first discovered the writings of Mary Roberts Rinehart. Already a devoted fan of Agatha Christie, Mary Roberts Rinehart's style captured me at once. I've yet to read all of her writing, but it is a goal I plan to accomplish someday.

Mary Roberts Rinehart (August 12, 1876-September 22, 1958) was a prolific author often called the American Agatha Christie. "Dorothy B. Hughes, crime critic and novelist, says she 'has been and continues to be' the most important American woman mystery writer." She is considered the source of the phrase "The butler did it", although she did not actually use the phrase herself, and also considered to have invented the "Had-I-But-Known" school of mystery writing. (Wikipedia)

Happy writing,