Monthly Archives: December 2009

The Descending Hoards

I’ve mentioned before that I work in a male dominated environment. At the most, there are four females I work with on a regular basis. Four females out of…roughly 200 or so men.

This has led me to a deeper understanding of the male mind. When you sit next to the gathering spot for the top dogs, you tend to overhear things. They talk a lot about hunting when they’re among themselves. It’s boring. But the minute one of the ladies walk into the room, they start flirting. Fascinating.

What I never knew, was that men can smell food through walls and across acres of land! It’s amazing! For instance, some kind vendor brought a box of McDonald’s breakfast foods and put it in the kitchen. In less than five minutes, the hoards descended on the kitchen. Did I attempt to get a biscuit? Oh no, I like my limbs where they are.

This isn’t the first time I’ve witnessed this phenomena. Yesterday, it was similar. Some kind lady brought a tray of sweets (things that have no discernable scent), and within minutes, they were all gone.

I know the guys are just excited to have food. They work hard (I think), and it isn’t like these are food items they get everyday, but I never realized how they manage to find the food before people in the office have. I’m not sure if that makes them like vultures of locusts. I’m leaning more towards locusts because when the swarm has abated, there is nothing left but an empty bag, or an empty tray with not even a crumb left. It’s amazing!

Have you ever witnessed this for yourself? I feel a bit like a scientist studying an alien species in the wild. Strange.

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Piper’s Interview

It’s been a while since I’ve had a chance to get down to Cypress Point. The town is still lovely, and the Veilerians are still in full force (not that I’m supposed to know anything about them, of course). However, I managed to track down the ever-elusive Piper Fairhaven.

We met up at Cuppa’s, the only coffee shop in town. She arrived in her very sensible 2007 Honda Civic. Because I have an inside agreement with Kali (the Oracle), I know Piper hates dressing up, so I wasn’t surprised to see her in jeans and a “My Heroes Have Always Been in Books” T-shirt.

I was surprised though, by her appearance. She’s maybe 5’3″, and curvy. I mean that in the best way. She’s adorable! She also has the most gorgeous hair. If I thought I’d look just as good with black and gold striped hair,  I’d do it in a heartbeat. She also has the most eerie gold eyes I’ve ever seen.

Me: Hi Piper, thank you so much for agreeing to this interview!

Piper: I didn’t have much choice, you kept calling my cell phone, and threatened to come to the Pleasure House.

Okay, so perhaps I was too persistent.

M: So what exactly is a pleasure house?

P: It’s a home for succubi. Because succubi live off of male energy, it was deemed acceptable by the High Council that succubi could live together in familial units to generate and preserve male lust.

M: Um, so you guys are like…you know, a brothel?

She didn’t look too happy about my choice of words.

P: No. We don’t take payment, we don’t allow mated males, and we have very strict rules. My mother, Persephone, is the Seductarian and she’d never allow anything that would harm the house. The males who visit the house know what they’re getting into.

M: Your mom’s the what, leader then? Who works in the house? You?

She blushed. Who knew succubi could blush? I thought they were all unflappable sex kittens. Huh, you learn something new everyday.

P: Um. My sisters Penny, Posy, Prudence, and Pauline choose their escorts for the night. I work the door with another bouncer to make sure the males who aren’t chosen don’t become rowdy.

M: Why don’t you, er work with your sisters?

We were both blushing by now.

P: I’m uh, not- I haven’t transitioned yet.

I looked around to make sure no one was listening.

M: I heard that you’re a Halfling.

P: What! Who told you that?

M: I have my sources, all confidential, I’m afraid.

P: Well, let me tell you something Ms. Avet, if word gets out about this, it could mean my life, so I hope you’re careful with what you know.

M: No one will know, trust me.

You guys won’t say anything, will you?

P: Then  yes, I am a Halfling. My mom, um, had an affair with a weretiger and er, had me. If my father’s streak finds out about me, it could have political…implications

I barely held back my ‘whoa’. I wanted to ask her more, but she was fidgeting, so I decided to change the subject.

M: Um, I’m to understand that you’re working with a werewolf on something?

Remember I said she had eerie gold eyes? Well, they’re really scary when she’s pissed off.

P: Yes. Connor Griffin. He’s the temporary Alpha of the Tall Pines Pack in Wolf Gap, Texas. He’s here looking for his nephew.

She was totally disgusted when she said his name, but she looked intrigued too. There was more to this story and I couldn’t wait to find out what.

M: Why don’t you like him?

P: Because he’s an arrogant ass! Oops.

Everyone had stopped to stare at us, especially the kid working behind the counter. In fact, he turned beet red and ran to the bathroom. Hm. When I looked back at Piper, her face was just as red.

P: He’s rude, overbearing…rude…nasty tempered…Sexy, okay? He’s friggin’ sexy. The ass.

M: O-kay, so why is he looking for his nephew here?

P: I don’t know. He asked to meet with my mom, but she sent me instead cause-

This was getting good!

M: Because?

P: Gah, I think she’s trying to get me to sleep with him.

M: Whoa. Why?

She looked around and leaned forward. I obliged her unspoken request for privacy.

P: Um, I have to lose my virginity to reach my full succubus potential and I think she wants Connor to do it.

M: Holy cow…you’re a virgin? How old are you?

Now she looked offended. I have a big mouth sometimes, but really, she’s a bloody succubus! Well, a succubus/weretiger Halfling, but she’s totally hot. Not that I’m into women, but all the men in the coffee shop were trying to watch her without getting caught.

P: I’m seventy-four, and I’m a virgin because…because I don’t know! I don’t…I don’t want to be a succubus, dammit. I want to fall in love with one man, have children, and be happy. But does mom get that? Noooo, she thinks I have this destiny to lead the house for her when she retires.

That was much more information than I thought I’d get, so I was content. Wow, so her mom was trying to get her to have sex. What a weird mother-daughter relationship!

M: And she wants Connor to do this?

P: She suggested it, not very subtly either. She’s always throwing men in my way. I’m almost tripping over them when I go out the house now.

M: That sounds awful.

Sarcasm, thou hast overcome me again!

P: It is horrible! These men don’t want to do anything but have sex. I want a partner, a friend…you know. I want to live like a regular woman. To them, I’m just a sex object.

M: Ouch. So what are you going to do?

P: I don’t know. Avoid Connor Griffin at all costs, if I can.

M: But I thought he was hot.

P: He is! He just hates succubi, okay? He hates me, and he doesn’t even know me.

At this point, Piper was near tears, so I couldn’t go on. Poor lass. Thrown in the path of a male (who is apparently very sexy, rude, arrogant, blah, blah, blah) who hates what she was by a mother who wants her to have sex with him. Wow, and I thought I had problems.

M: I’m sorry for upsetting you, Piper. Thank you for taking the time to meet with me.

P: It’s okay. Everything seems to upset me these days.

M: How about I treat you to a Snickers Crush Iced Mocha?

P: That sounds good.

We spent the rest of the afternoon drinking the most divine drinks, and talking about romance books. Apparently Piper is as much a romance bookworm as I am. I just hope my interview with Connor goes a little better. Maybe I’ll wait a little longer before I meet with him.

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The “Cheating” Hero

I have a critique partner, bless her soul. She puts up with my comma splices, and my tendency to have dangling modifiers. I’m very lucky to have her in my corner, not to mention I think she’s helping me be the best writer I can be. It was a partnership that came about unexpectedly through the Muse Online Writer’s Conference and I couldn’t be happier.

The reason I’ve titled this post ‘The Cheating Hero’ is because of something I discovered while critiquing her story. No, the hero isn’t cheating, but it made me think about what makes a story more ‘real’ to me.

For the most part, I read only paranormals and historicals, and in several of them there’s that moment when the hero ‘cheats’ on the heroine. The quotes are because they haven’t technically gotten together, but you know they’re going to be together. It’s such a small device, but powerful, I think. It makes me go ‘oh boy, this is going to come back and bite him on the ass.’ And it usually does.

I’m not saying that I want to read this in every story, but it is a clever plot twist, bringing more conflict to the table. It also makes me more sympathetic to the heroine. On the other hand, if the hero and heroine have a relationship going, I do not like the cheating at all. It turns me off completely.

I remember reading one historical where the hero had to cheat because to do otherwise would expose him as a spy or something like that. I read that book, furious at him. To me, the ends didn’t justify the means. This is perhaps a pet peeve in equal irritation of the TSTL heroine.

What irks you in stories? Is there one plot line that just drives you utterly insane and you’ll put the book away without finishing it? What turns you off when you’re reading?

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A Time Traveler’s Backpack

In my usual fashion, I was deep thinking while brushing my teeth this morning. Maybe I have some brain cells that leaked down to my gums and when I brush my teeth, I tickle them into tossing out ideas. Hm, I might have to do a study on that.

Anyway, I was wondering two things this morning. First, if I could travel back in time, which time period would I travel to? I’m a history buff (I hold the paper that proves it, too!), so I had to seriously think about this.

My first thought was, wouldn’t it be awesome to live in Medieval England? Then I started thinking about the lack of hygiene and women’s rights. It would be fantastic to see what it was really like, see if chivalry was real or not, but on the other hand, they’d think I was a serf and I’d have to work.

Then I thought about Regency England. Of course, the women’s rights movement was still sadly lacking, but at least it was a little better than the Middle Ages. Wear those gorgeous gowns, have tea with a Mr. Darcy type fellow, and have my hand kissed. Although, once again, I’d probably end up a parlor maid to some lecherous sod with nary a hero in sight. Hmph. (Blame my melodrama on the Regency romances I’ve been reading lately, lol)

Which brought to mind, if I could travel back in time and had the chance to bring a backpack filled with items, what would I bring?

1. Lush soaps, shampoo, toothpaste, and toothbrush. Cause really, I have to be well-groomed in case I run into Prince Charming.

2. Medicine. With my luck, I’d pop into an epidemic and die. Yeah, so antibiotics, Tylenol, and Vitamin C would go in the pack. Even better, I could use my medicine to save someone’s life and be called a heroine! Or a witch, in which case I’d be burned at the stake, so this is iffy.

3. Feminine products, sorry if it’s TMI, but I don’t even want to think about using primitive products *cough*. If I’m going to be touring history, I’m not going to go for a week. I’d want to go for at least a few months.

4. History book so I can avoid being in the wrong place at the wrong time cause it would be my luck to be stuck in 1605, sneaking into the House of Parliament and found with Guy Fawkes…yeah, that would suck. Of course, if I were discovered with this book, I’d probably be burned as a witch. Hm. I might have to think about this item more.

So, how would you answer these questions? When/where would you go if you could, and what would you bring with you?

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Wedding Bells

Saturday was my cousin’s wedding. It was thrown together in two weeks, but looking at everything my aunt did, you wouldn’t have suspected it. Now that this cousin is married and my brother is set to marry in June, that leaves me as the only non-married person in the family, other than the kids.

Oh sure, we have divorced and widowed people in the family, but I’m the last of the perpetually single. I don’t think this is a bad thing really. I like being single and independent. When I get the ‘when are you getting married’ question (which always comes up), I reply ‘I don’t want to get married. I like having authority over the remote control.’ It’s a flippant answer, but it’s better than me going on about divorce statistics, or giving in to the paranoia years of Lifetime movies have wrought within me.

I have nothing against the married state. I have nothing against parenthood. I just don’t know if it would fit in with the way I’d like my life to progress. I want to write. I’m not saying that marriage would prevent this, but not every husband out there would be supportive of it, and my chances of finding a man who would be supportive, isn’t the best.

So, if you’re married and write, do you have your spouse’s support? If you’re single and write, do you think you could find a partner who supports you completely?

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Fantasy Man Friday

Happy Friday all! Most wonderous of days!

I was just thinking about Batman & Robin. Do you remember this movie? George Clooney as Batman, Chris O’Donnell as Robin? Well, it was horrible. I’m sorry. It was downright terrible. It also contains one of the worst lines ever written for a movie (in my opinion).

The scene was Poison Ivy (Uma Thurman), who had that poisonous kiss,  just kissed our innocent Robin. She waits for him to die. He doesn’t. Because “I hate to disappoint you but my rubber lips are immune to your charms.” WTF? Rubber lips??

Okay, deep breath. This happened years ago, I’m over it. Honest. No, I’m not over it! This was awful. I saw this movie with my best friend and my brother. Normally I don’t heckle during a movie, honest. But this was too much temptation. Rubber lips, indeed!

Fantasy man Friday. Now, that’s a line that always gets my attention in the best of ways. Brace yourselves, today’s offering is naked. Oh, don’t get too worked up. You can’t see the really good parts. I intend to keep this blog PGNR (parental guidance not recommended unless they have good heart health).

There’s a lot of things I could do with this lovely man, but kissing with rubber lips isn’t one of them. He sure is yummy. Those strategically placed tattoos which are almost begging to play ‘connect the tattoos…with your tongue!’ That sultry expression. G-r! Ahem.

Today’s question: What is the worst line of any movie you’ve ever seen? Have you ever been compelled to heckle a movie at the theater (not counting Rocky Horror Picture Show since you’re expected to heckle and interact)? How’s today’s offering?


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I’m totally thinking about a future work in progress, which is weird since I haven’t plotted it yet, haven’t finished my current WIP, and I have something completely different in mind for my next MS. Too many manuscripts swirling around in my head! However, I already have the beginnings of a playlist in mind for it. I know exactly what I want to listen to to put me in the mood for it. It’ll have to start with Iron Maiden’s ‘Flight of Icarus’ and Black Sabbath’s ‘Heaven and Hell’. What’ll come after, I’m not sure yet. But it’s a start. I should write this down!!

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An Epiphany

I’ve been working on the manuscript I started for NaNo, trying to get it to my word count goal of 92,000 words. It hasn’t been going well. Oh, I wrote some really awesome dark scenes (I’m writing this in a cast since I broke my arm patting myself on the back), but the points between the dark scenes and love scenes are falling flat.

The latest chapter is the point when the hero discovers that the heroine is an assassin who was sent to kill him. That was a powerful scene. He was so pissed! I was really into that scene. I mean, I wrote it with the thought that this is how I’d react if someone was sent to kill me and slept with me instead.

The next chapter is where I’m having the problem. Well, before my epiphany. See, I wasn’t sure how I was going to get her to leave his home without making it overly dramatic. She has to suffer for her lies and for failing in her assignment. I was going to have her go home, mope a bit, write a confession, and send it to the good guys before she was caught by her ‘handler’. Then I was like…wait a minute that isn’t going to work.

So there I was, brushing my teeth this morning and it came to me. Bloody hell. I’m so dense sometimes! She isn’t going to actually leave! She’s now responsible for his safety. She has to remain around to keep him safe without him knowing she’s there. She can do this because she’s the bomb (or rather because she’s a shadow fairy who can disappear into the smallest shadow). Duh!

I’m so frustrated because I should’ve written this scene earlier this week instead of agonizing over how I was going to get to this point. I even pulled out my plot outline to see ‘yes, I am following the plot, but why does this suck?’ Nothing helped. It wasn’t writer’s block though, so much as scene block. My brain wasn’t clicking to the next logical step.  So thank goodness for my weird muse finding me while I brush my teeth!

Has this happened to you? Where you’re following your carefully outlined plot and discovered you were stuck? If you’re a pantster, have you found yourself thinking ‘um, and now what?’

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You Have Questions, They Don’t Want to Answer

Well, I was about to say ‘we all ask questions that are so embarrassing we nearly kill the person we’re asking’, but I don’t know if everyone does this.

See, when I was a young, impressionable, innocent 16-year-old, I was reading romances so fast the local library was shipping them from other branches to keep up with me. I was innocent at this stage, I swear! However, I was curious. As romance readers know, our books include either sweet love scenes that make you go ‘aw’ and wonder what they’re doing behind that closed door, or they have hot, erotic scenes that have you putting the book down to fan your face.

Oh yes, I remember distinctly reading my very first steamy love scene. I was blushing so much, I put the book to the side, fanned myself, collected my tattered composure, and picked the book up again. I was hooked. Not because of the sex, which was outstanding, but because I’d never imagined such things! I really was innocent, I suppose, though it was a lack of knowing about passion more than the mechanics of the act.

So, armed with my newfound understanding of passion, I had to ask someone about pre-marital sex. I could’ve asked my older sister. She was married by that time with a couple of kids, but I just couldn’t do it. None of my friends had done the deed either, so I couldn’t ask them (hell, they were asking me about sex because of all the romances I read). So I went to the best source for information. My mom.

We were sitting in the kitchen. She was drinking coffee and I think it went something like this:

I plopped into a chair across from her. Fiddled with stuff on the table. Shook my leg nervously.

“Um, mom? Can I ask you a question?”


Deep breath. “Did you and dad have sex before you got married?”

I watched my mom’s face turn from her pretty olive tone to nearly puce. She stuttered. She stammered. Blinked at me in shock. “Ask your father!”

Hm. I was intrigued. Obviously, mom hadn’t waited before she was married, but I wanted to be sure. So when it was time to go to my dad’s house, I waited for the perfect moment to ask my question.

He just got in from work, was drinking his coffee (notice a coffee flavored theme here?). We chatted about how school was going and all the other boring stuff I didn’t want to talk about. Then…

“Dad? Did you and mom have sex before you got married?”

I watched my dad’s face, which was tanned dark from working outdoors all his life, turn brick red. He looked at me as though I’d lost my mind, but I was persistent. I wasn’t going to take the question back. I stared back at him.

He spluttered. Put his coffee cup down. Cleared his throat.

“Well, we did date for four years!”

And that was that. I finally knew the answer to my question. However, I’d just put my parents through what had to be the most embarrassing moment in their years of parenthood. Now, through the years, I’ve come across questions my friends and  younger cousins have asked their parents and nearly killed them with the shock.

Today’s question is: Did you ever ask someone a question that embarrassed them to the point of their imminent expiration? Have you ever been asked something that made you want to die right then and there?


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Permit Me a Cruel Chuckle

If you were a Disney cartoon movie watcher, you might recognize the title from Jungle Book. As far as I’m concerned, it’s one of the best Disney movie quotes ever!

But that isn’t what I want to talk about today. Since Christmas is nearly upon us, and I can’t afford to buy presents for every single person I know, I’ve resorted to witty Christmas cards. Have you ever tried to find a funny Christmas card that isn’t a money/gift card holder? Meh. I spent nearly an hour doing this on Sunday. I didn’t fare so well.

I did find a few cards, but the best of the lot will be the card for my co-worker. It’s one of those recordable cards, but I so don’t want to record my voice on it. No, I have a much more maniacal plan. This co-worker hates, absolutely HATES Lady Gaga. Why? Because his pre-teen daughter loves her and sings along to Poker Face in the shower, loudly from what I’m understanding. My plan is to record a bit of Poker Face in the card and that’ll be his present.

Is that evil? Probably. Do I really worry about it? Nah. I think it’s a riot. He’ll be so disgusted! Bwahahaha!

On an entirely different note, I finished Suzanne Enoch’s The Care and Taming of a Rogue this morning and it was one of the best historicals I’ve read in a long time. I’m in love with Bennett, oh and the Duke of Sommerset, and quite possibly all the members of the Adventurers’ Club. Can’t wait for the next one!

So, what cruel gifts are you planning to give out this year? When you shop for presents, do you go for function, humor, or sentiment?


Filed under humor