Saturday, April 30, 2011


Self-publishing one’s own books used to have a certain “ick” factor on the part of publishers and the reading public alike. With no company acting as gatekeeper, standards of professionalism could not be guaranteed and often there was no way for the reader to be assured of purchasing a quality work.

But times and technology changes people’s ideas and what was once anathema is now de rigueur. Well-known authors have decided to take their careers into their own hands, bypassing a group increasingly viewed as “middlemen”. New authors are seeing new frontiers and forming their own bands of loyal readers.

And readers have benefited from this expansion of self-publishing, especially in the ebook formats. Look at all the choices! Without traditional publishers as gatekeepers, anything and everything is out there for you to pick and choose from. Yes, this means that standards of professionalism are often a crapshoot, but, as in every business, the best will rise to the top and the unprofessional will eventually find another job.

So why did I choose to self-publish Tales from the Ramayana? Mostly because it’s a collection of short stories (strike one – no publisher’s really looking for short stories) taken from an old epic from India (old? Yuck! Strike two. And is it anything like the Odyssey? That was a stupid story. Wandering around lost for ten years? Why didn’t he just ask a woman for directions and go home? Or is it like Beowulf? I hated that in high school…Strike three). I’m out!

But at the center of this truly cool epic, is a love story sure to set your heart aflutter. The four short stories in my telling of the Ramayana show how Ram and Sita meet, fall in love and then convince their families they should be together. And you want to talk royal weddings? You should see theirs! Hands down theirs was more glorious than any of recent memory.

I’m not the only Scribe to jump into the self-publishing waters, either. Tara Nina has an offering out, an erotic romance with a hunky cowboy you won’t want to miss!

So readers, what are your concerns about authors taking the plunge into the self-publication waters? If you were giving advice to authors, what would you tell them?

And authors, what do you see as the benefits (and pitfalls) of taking matters into your own hands?

As always, play safe!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

What Do I Blog About Now?

I admire people who have so much going on in their lives or are so clever that they can blog every day. I can't do that. I live a simple life. I get out of bed, I shower, I have breakfast, I check email, I write, I have lunch, I check email, I write, I check email, I have supper, I watch TV, I go to bed, I read a while, I go to sleep. Somewhere in there I do dishes, laundry, vacuum, and clean off my desk so I can find a pen when I need it.

So I wondered what I could tell you about this time that would spark your interest and entertain you.

The weather? Spring has sprung! That means it's allergy season for me. Okay, that covered the weather.

Movies I've seen? I went to see The Tourist the end of December. Otherwise I have a Netflix subscription and watch movies at home. I recently watched Tangled (loved it!) and finished the last disc of the third season of the BBC production of Robin Hood. I didn't like the ending, but I enjoyed the series.

Books I've read? Sunday is my reading day, along with the bit of reading I do at night before going to sleep. I've been catching up on the Scribes' books that have been stacked up, waiting to be read. I recently finished:

Snowy Night Seduction by Arianna Hart
Finding the Magic by Cait Miller
Tales from the Ramayana by Diana Hunter
Winter's Rose by Ruby Storm
Playing Cowboy by Tara Nina
After the Ceremony by Tielle St. Clare

Man, these ladies are talented! I'm managing to read a book a week, which isn't nearly enough to satisfy my need to immerse myself in other authors' worlds. I'd love to have more time to read, but writing comes first. After all, that's my job and I LOVE my job.

Hobbies? I love to scrapbook. One of my friends is a consultant for Creative Memories and has a huge room at her house where she holds scrapbooking classes. I go there at least twice a month. We scrapbook, gossip, and eat chocolate. What could be better?

So now I've written a whole blog. That's pretty good considering I had nothing to blog about. I hope part of it sparked your interest and entertained you.

Have a great week!


Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Speeding World

We all know the world moves too fast and it gets faster as we get older but lately, it's like I can feel it moving. It isn't a case of "where did the month go?" It's waking up each day and needing to get things done. I think it's because I feel like I've been "flintstoning" for the past two years.

I learned this term last week. When Fred Flintstone used to get ready to drive his car, he's spin his legs and run in place, a lot of action but not going anywhere. That's kind of how I've been feeling. I've been writing and getting books out, but I don't know that I'm progressing. I haven't been changing. I haven't been taking in new information. I got done with my meteorology classes three years ago and my brain's gone stagnant. I've even been reading the same books over and over again (okay, that probably won't change. I love re-reading books. It's like visiting old friends but I need to add new books to my stock).

In the last month, there's been a change. I feel like I'm moving forward again. And it came from a simple source...I sat down and wrote out some goals. I know they always tell you to do that but I've never really taken the time. For the first time in a while, I feel like I know what I want in my life. I have direction. The result is I want to rush that direction. That's why the world feels like it's speeding along.

Or maybe it's just that I'm racing to catch up. I see people doing what I want to do and I want to get busy. I want to be where they are.

It sounds a little panicked, maybe a little sad but really, it's invigorating. Every day I think about what I'm going to do to get me to where I want to be. Part of my goals are writing related and to accomplish those, I've been writing more. I've been hitting daily writing targets. Look for a new release at the end of April and yes, I'm writing the next dragon book (due to my editor in July).

I'm a little off balance with it right now. Kind of like a top that got spun to fast but I think after this initial rush, I'll slow down. At least now I know where I'm headed.

P.S. Don't forget to check out all the new books out from the Sizzling Scribes.
Tales of the Ramayana by Diana Hunter (Kindle, Nook)
Playing Cowboy by Tara Nina (Kindle, Nook)
One Thing to Give by Lynn LaFleur (Ellora's Cave)
After the Ceremony by Tielle St. Clare (Ellora's Cave, Kindle)

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Turning the Speed Limit

Whether I choose for it to happen or not, there’s no running from it. Today I turn the speed limit. Fifty-five. How in hell does that happen? I bet there’s more than one person out there scratching their head like me and trying to come up with the answer! The only thing I can deduce is I will now begin to fool myself on a daily basis. Fifty-five in my mind has just become the new thirty. LOL! Because I tell you if I don’t keep this mantra running through my brain I may just have to bring out my cane and find some cute little boyscout to help me cross the street.

Is it possible? I just turned the speed limit. What the hell. I don’t feel like what I used to think fifty-five would feel like. For those fossils out there close to my age, I ask you this question. Do you remember when you were in your teens and knew someone who was turning thirty – did you think wow, they are O-L-D? And then as thirty crept close, you readjusted your mindset and switched it up and then began to think about forty and what repercussions there would be to having near adult children? Well hell yeah! Instead of hiring a babysitter you now will be able to party with those same children and show them how youthful forty actually is (keep telling yourself that, baby) And yeah again, your own parents were O-L-D at forty but no way were you going to be like that because damn, the body still seems to be holding out.

Ah yes, here it comes. The day you turn the speed limit. This is what’s going on with me. Some little bitch is running around inside my brain, pointing a finger at me and holding her crotch so she doesn’t pee her pants from laughing. You have just turned the speed limit, she giggles behind her youthful smooth-skinned hand. Now that you’re fifty-five, happy hour will be defined as a nap instead of doing body shots on a bar. That little aforementioned bitch finally gets her wits together and really starts on me. She says, and remember when you loved surprise birthday cakes and all the candles? Hmmph! Now you can use all that wax to wax your legs….and armpits….and the mustache you’ve recently acquired and all those goat hairs springing out on your chin! And hey, old lady, remember having sex and being able to bend? I’ll just leave it at that, but remember, you can live without sex but you can’t live without your cheater glasses! And don’t worry about your friends keeping your secrets safe because they can’t remember them either! And don’t worry about watching the weather channel. Your knees will be a much more accurate way of telling you that weather is about to change. And oh yeah, one more thing. You can quit worrying about droopy breasts and a sagging ass. Why? Because they’ve already fallen. Yup. That knocking feeling on the back of your knees is really your ass.

Argggh, I say! Arggggh! But on the upside, I’m going to make this a good day. I’m going to spend it with my kids and family and friends. I’m actually NOT doing the cooking. I’m going to eat and not worry about calories and cholesterol. I’m going to look around and count my blessings that my kids and grandkids are healthy and that my parents are still here, productive, and not in a nursing home. And for the hell of it I just may do a body shot and set my cruise on fifty-six when I drive home!