Wednesday, February 27, 2008

PERILS OF PLEASURE by Julie Anne Long

In PERILS OF PLEASURE, Colin Eversea is about to be hung for murder but is rescued by mercenary Madeleine Greenway. Her assignment is to kidnap Colin and prevent his hanging. On her way to return him and collect her pay, she learns that her employer has changed his mind and now wants Madeleine dead.

When I heard the plot for this book, I knew I had to read it. My love of historicals aside, it sounded like a fast read with all key elements packaged in. I read the first few pages and relaxed into the assurance that this author and I had become friends.

Miss Long was a very nice writing style that is easy and enjoyable to read. Once you adjust to the head-hopping and point of view slips, there isn't anything jarring and no 'why am I being punished' moments. She tells the story seamlessly from start to finish.

At the halfway point, something bothered me. I was not feeling a connection to the characters. I stopped reading to understand why I didn't care about Colin and "Mad". I certainly wanted to, I liked this author's style. What I came up with is this: a good part of the book is told from the male mc's point of view. This is not necessarily a bad thing. However, Colin didn't seem to have much depth. He is engaged to a childhood sweetheart, but at the same time is a major player who is very hormonally driven. This characteristic is not endearing to me. We weren't in Mad's point of view deep enough to really know her. Realizing what I was facing, I continued, but the end of the book felt contrived and disappointing.

Overall, I'm torn on my feelings for this book. Would I read this author again? Absolutely. There is more than enough of what Miss Long does well that would make me read her other works.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

FINISHED!

Bound by Honor is finished! Woohoo!! When I realized I had a mid March deadline, I called for beta readers to jump in early. They very kindly followed close behind while I wrote. THANK YOU, ladies. I want to give this a couple of weeks to rest before I do, what I hope will be, a final read through. I might make that deadline after all. :D

Monday, February 25, 2008

Just me thinking

I was thinking about mc's, male mc's specifically. What was it about my favorite mc's that endeared me to him? As I thought of the characters that I still think of fondly, I started profiling them and thought of the opening scene where these characters and I were introduced. The majority of them were vulnerable, either injured or imprisoned or something along these lines. It makes me wonder. Had these mc's started their stories differently, simply being a nice or 'misunderstood' guy, would I have developed a similar attachment?

Like I said, it made me wonder.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Cover your ears!

SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

I have my release dates.

Cost of Freedom will be released in digital on May 30, 2008 and in print on Nov. 28, 2008. That's just in time for Christmas!!

Strong characters

With the latest buzz about the decreasing desire for Rambo-esq heroines, (yeah, I'm still giddy) I started wondering about female mc's.

We want strong characters but when creating this person, how do you, the author, determine their DNA? Certainly, what one person interprets as strong, another person may find annoying.

Recently, I heard lots of hullabaloo about a certain character. When I read the book, I found myself rooting for this woman's demise. The more painful, the better as far as I was concerned. When she finally met with destruction, I cheered--loudly. From my prospective, this was the perfect place to end the book. I know this reaction was not want the author intended.

I think we have to see a character's vulnerability as well as their strength. This could be pivotal in creating endearing characters that can lead us anywhere and we will not be swayed. Take the reader to the brink, but after they have established this relationship with the reader. When you do this, I'm certain readers will try to jump in the page to avenge the wrong done to this character.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Sh-wing

It is said that all things are temporary and circulate throughout. With that in mind, it seems things are about to change.

On Kristen Nelson's blog, she posted a note from a meeting she had with Random House. The part that perked my attention was, "She also expressed a longing for female heroines that aren’t killing machines."

This type of heroine has been the mainstay for a long time and I am so glad the publishing taste has been satiated. Not that there isn't still a desire by some readers for this, but I am thrilled the publishing houses are becoming sensitive to reader's demands for a different heroine type.

Yes! Yes! Yes! Thank you!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

First Interview

My first interview has been posted if anyone wants to take a look.
Thanks Allie for thinking of me.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Galleys

Galleys are here! OMG...OMG...OMG

I have ten days to get them back to her. I don't want to look. I know I'll find something that I want to tweak. See something pop out at me that has hidden itself until now. I need chocolate...and Fritos.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Meme

Yes, I know I should be writing, but a little break is okay, right?

I got this from Eve.

1) Are you currently in a serious relationship?
A. Very.

2) What was your dream growing up?
A. I wanted to be a nurse.

3) What talent do you wish you had?
A. I wish I could sing. Wait, I'll not be greedy. I'd like to sing well enough that people in front of me won't cringe during praise and worship.

4) If I bought you a drink what would it be?
A. What do you like?

5) Favorite vegetable?
A. Potato, any way you make them.

6) What was the last book you read?
A. The Warrior.

7) What zodiac sign are you?
A. Cancer.

8) Any Tattoos and/or Piercings? Explain where.
A. Nope. I had pierced ears, but had constant infections.

9) Worst Habit?
A. Other people are probably in a better postition to answer that.

10) If you saw me walking down the street would you offer me a ride?
A. Sure.

11) What is your favorite sport?
A. Baseball.

12) Do you have a Negative or Optimistic attitude?
A. A little of both.

13) What would you do if you were stuck in an elevator with me?
A. Grill you on how you got an agent.

14) Worst thing to ever happen to you?
A. I'd rather not say.

15) Tell me one weird fact about you.
A. I dip french fries in tarter sauce.

16) Do you have any pets?
A. A shih tzu names Jesse.

17) What if I showed up at your house unexpectedly?
A. Please don't. I need notice to clean.

18) What was your first impression of me? (hmmm...careful!)
A. Why the pseudonym?

19) Do you think clowns are cute or scary?
A. Eh, neither.

20) If you could change one thing about how you look, what would it be?
A. A nice smile.

21) Would you be my crime partner or my conscience?
A. Sadly, I could go either way.

22) What color eyes do you have?
A. Green.

23) Ever been arrested?
A. Nah.

24) Bottle or can soda?
A. I liked the individual bottles, but those are gone. so cans.

25) If you won $10,000 today, what would you do with it?
A. Travel.

What happened to 26?
A. Gremlins.

27) What's your favorite place to hang at?
A. Home.

28) Do you believe in ghosts?
A. Yes, but not in the way most people do.

29) Favorite thing to do in your spare time?
A. Write.

30) Do you swear a lot?
A. Not at all.

31) Biggest pet peeve?
A. People who hold their fork in the left hand while eating.

32) In one word, how would you describe yourself?
A. Let's not go there.

33) Do you believe/appreciate romance?
A. Not as much as I should.

35) Do you believe in God?
A. Absolutely.

36) Will you repost this so I can fill it out and do the same for you?
A. Done.

Friday, February 8, 2008

How indulgent are you?

We are having a great time over at the Firsts Thread. Thanks, Jen! You are a brave woman and very hard working.

Although the entries have been met with interesting reviews, someone brought up a good point. They would hardly reject a book because of the first line. It made me wonder, what is your cutoff point? How far into a book will you read before you say, that's enough, I can't take this any more?

For me, I think a minimum of three chapters is enough. I feel this is enough time to establish the characters, the setting, and the conflict.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Firsts

Over in a forum I haunt, a friend of mine is starting a month(?) of firsts. We will begin with the first line of our wips, progress to the first paragragh, move on to a full page, then five pages, and end with a complete chapter. We've done this before and had a lot of fun while tightening up that very precious first chapter. It all starts tomorrow. Come and be part. Here's the link.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Febru-weary

Someone clear Ramon's calendar! I need him on twenty-four hour notice. In COF, all of the plot points converged earlier in the book and moved toward a smooth climax (writingwise, that is). In BBH, the last quarter of the book has revelations bursting at every seam while the storylines storm toward the last page. I'm hanging on for dear life while bouncing back and forth stitching everything together. Ramon, you're gonna need reinforcements.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Did I hear someone say the last words to write are the easiest?

Let me guess. If I say I have approximately 5k words left to write, you'll say, one to two days and you should be done. Yeah, I can see where you'd think that way. Here's the thing...it's the last 5k (I hope) of the book. This means, I'm making sure all roads did indeed lead to Rome and all the questions are answered. Did I set up everything in a climactic way and now have you mumbling to your family, just another sec, I'm almost finished? Oh gosh, why can't I write a basic story with one plot line? I can do this. I can do this. Yeah, I know. I'm stalling.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Templates

I need to take a break. What better way then on my blog?

Like most of you, I have Google Reader. Keeping up to date has never been easier. However, I'm in the mood to spruce things up. I have been searching for blog templates, without any luck, I might add. Breaking free of Reader, I've noticed that several of you have really nice templates. Do you mind if I ask, where did you find your templates?