Monthly Archives: March 2010

Birth of an Author

As writers, we like to think that we know exactly what we want to write, how we want to write it, and where our writing careers are going. Boy, are we wrong! Actually, I don’t know if that’s wrong for other authors, but it’s wrong for me. I know how I want to write and I know where I want my career to go, but what I want to write is becoming more clouded rather than clearer.

I suppose you have to take a look at what you read before you can put words on page. Prior to my serious intent to write, I read paranormal and historical romance avidly. Yeah, if you could see my bookshelves, you’d see so many of both genres that I look like a book store. So with this in mind, I decided the paranormal genre was right for me. I wrote three manuscripts in a year and I’m working on getting them through the critique/query/submission processes.

I’ve already mentioned that I’m giving erotica a shot. Surprisingly enough, I’m finding it…not easier, but I’m enjoying it. I’m not that far into the story yet, but I like what I’ve written. Sure, it needs tweaking, but I can handle that. I can’t handle staring at a blank screen trying to force my brain to spit out the words my last paranormal needed.

Now, on to the title of this post. As many of you already know, Danica Avet is my pseudonym for paranormal and contemporary romance with a touch of Cajun spice (a mouthful, isn’t it?). Well, I’d like to introduce you all to Jojo Solet, author of erotic love stories that set fire to your imagination. Jojo is a quiet lady, mostly because she spends far too much time lost in the steamy stories she dreams up.

Darlings, I’m so glad to step into the sisterhood of sweaty bodies and sex good enough to kill. Danica has been a sweetheart, letting me share her blog for the moment. She’s also letting me borrow her body so I can finally speak, sort of. Here’s a little peek into my current work in progress:

Miss Glory Ridgefield is a working woman. Not that kind of working woman. After years of toiling as a companion, chaperone, and girl-of-all-work, she’s finally found a job that offers a little excitement to her hungry soul. Unfortunately, her employer is none other than the Earl of Isley, the eldest of the Monroe triplets. Scandal followed the brothers and it was whispered that they weren’t looking for three brides, but one. Glory doesn’t care as long as they leave her alone and never fully realize the sinful needs that burn beneath her prim exterior.

James, Justin, and Jesse Monroe have been looking for the one woman who can love them all equally. They’ve tried finding their own ladies, but as luck would have it, they’re all drawn to the same woman again and again. Their solution? They’ll scour the Ton for the perfect lady to belong to them. Glory Ridgefield might be the daughter of the man who embroiled them all in scandal, but there’s something in her that calls to each brother. They need her. They will have her. But first, they have to battle her preconceived notions of love and sin.

Thank you, Danica, for allowing me a moment to get this out to your friends. I hope you’ll permit me to return.

So Jojo is taking a historical approach to erotica. It should be interesting to see where it goes. I guess this whole post is about not locking yourself into what kind of author you perceive yourself as. Being an author should mean being flexible and open-minded. I never would have discovered Jojo if I hadn’t been so despondent over my latest paranormal WIP. Will anything come of it? How does that song go? “Today is where your book begins, The rest is still unwritten”. That should probably be a writer’s theme song.

Is everyone properly confused now? Bwahahaha

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Huh? Wha-?

So yesterday I was bemoaning the fact that I couldn’t write. Nothing was working for me, my brain was fried. That was in the morning. Something happened yesterday afternoon.

Erotica is not my favorite genre. I have read some books that were excellent, well-written, and oh so touching (not that kind of touching, pervs). I never, ever thought I’d attempt to write erotica myself. But there you have it. Yesterday, I began writing an erotica short story (another first). It’s also a historical. Am I trying to do something very different or what?

I can’t say I’m that surprised, really. I am a history buff, so eventually I did want to write historicals, but I just didn’t expect it to turn out to be erotica. By the way, I have nothing against erotica. I think it’s an intriguing genre and I have found myself drawn to some authors. Lorelei James? Yup. Love her books. Jess Michaels? Kate Pearse, Sharon Page, and some others…all great stuff. But me? Writing it? *looks shocked* My mother would kill me! But I’m doing it anyway.

It’s a menage quatre. Will I attempt to get it published? I don’t know. I do know I’ll be writing it under a new pseudonym. Right now, it’s the only story my brain/muse/creative child wants to write. I hope it doesn’t suck that much, lol.

Have you ever found yourself venturing into a new genre without knowing why? What are your views on erotica as a genre?

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Meh

I’m a fan of LOLcats, but I ran across one picture that spoke to me because I’m suffering from this exact same thing.

I haven’t written anything worth saving in well over a week. I’m not sure if it’s writer’s block, or writer’s burn out. I’ve been going full speed ahead since July without a single break from writing (other than my weekend ME time).

The story I’m currently working on does want to be written, but I can’t bring myself to write it. I replotted it twice, so maybe that has a lot to do with it. It’s an entirely new world, so I worry that I became too comfortable with The Veil series.

I have scored a new critique partner (that puts me at 2 now) and she’s helping with my 3rd manuscript. She’s found a lot of things I glossed over in my initial edits, so I think we’re going to get along well. I don’t know if my mind is torn between my edits and new material.

Argh! Maybe it isn’t any of that, maybe I’ve just burned out my muse (or my creative brain). I haven’t even thought of any new things to write about, which is strange for me. *slump* I’m not depressed, just tired, I think. Writing 3 manuscripts in a year has done a number on my brain.

What do you do when your brain feels burnt to a crisp?

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Fantasy Man Friday

Yet another week ended. I hate that time actually passes, but I do so love my Fridays.

I’m really going to dress shop tomorrow. This time I actually mean it. I can’t put it off any longer. Hopefully nothing else comes up to steal away my Saturday. *crosses her fingers* I think I’ll also be having a sister day. My sister and I are planning to get our hair done together, then go shopping for dresses. Our mom will be joining us, so it’ll definitely be a girl day, I think. I frequently sigh with envy because I can shop for anyone but myself. I know what would look good on someone else. Me? Pffth. Everything looks like crap.

So this has been an insane week, hasn’t it? Seminars, Golden Heart and RITA finalists announced, dress shopping…crazy, crazy. We all need to relax and bask in some masculine beauty. That’s what I’m here for, folks. I’m trying to help you all with my Fantasy Man Fridays.

Ahem…I’m feeling better, how about you? He looks like he needs a little help getting those underwear off of him. I’m an excellent undresser (I don’t care if it isn’t a real word), been doing it all my life. Hell, I could probably even get a degree in it. I could definitely help him get that off of him.

There’s now a puddle of drool on my keyboard. Pardon me while I mop it up. What do you guys think? Does he make you feel less stressed?

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Book Review: The Battle Sylph

I forgot to post a book review last week, but that’s okay, I’m making up for it this week. I was feeling a bit lost, looking for something to read when I came across The Battle Sylph by L.J. McDonald. I’ll admit to being leery about reading it. It was by an unknown author, but the story sounded intriguing.

Here’s the blurb:

Sometimes, love means war. 

He is one of many: a creature of magic, unrelentingly male. He is lured through the portal by pure female beauty, a virgin sacrifice. When she is killed, he is silenced and enslaved. 

Such a dark ritual is necessary, you see. Unlike their elemental cousins-those gentler sylphs of wind and fire-Battlers find no joy in everyday labor. Their magic can destroy an army or demolish a castle, and each has but one goal: find a Queen, then protect and pleasure her at all costs. What would a woman do if she were given such a servant, and what would befall any kingdom foolish enough to allow a Battler to escape?

Young Solie and the people of Eferem are about to find out.

I got the book in yesterday. I was in the middle of re-reading a historical romance that I love, but I couldn’t resist the draw of this book. Wow. Okay? Just wow. McDonald’s world is fascinating and rich. I love the idea of sylphs, which are “spirits” from another dimension, who are lured over to the human world and anchored there by their bonds with their masters. There are elemental sylphs and then, there are the healer and battle sylphs. The battle sylphs are the bad boys of the sylph world. They fight to defend their hives and queens.

I was sucked into this story. Solie is young, younger than most heroines I read about, but you forget about her age as the story goes along. Heyou, her accidentally bonded battle sylph, is a sweetheart. You can absolutely see them together. I personally, was drawn more to the other battle sylphs who are darker and more dangerous. Yeah, I like the bad boys. I can’t wait until the next books come out. *fans herself*

This book reminded me of some non-romance high fantasy books I’ve read (at my brother’s insistence). There were several POVs, but I didn’t mind as it gave the story a lot of depth and me, as a reader, much more information than I would’ve had just from the hero and heroine. There’s also a whole helluva lot of action going on. There are big battles, smaller skirmishes, pretty much everything you could think of. Oh, and did I mention the romance? Yes, there is romance in this story. And sex.

I’m giving McDonald two thumbs up and two virgins. This book was very good. If you’re looking for a sweet romance where everything’s always sunny, don’t read this. But, if you’re looking for a story with a lot of depth and action, give it a try. I honestly can’t wait for the next book in the series. Ril’s book! *swoon*

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Next Stop, Yawnville

So yesterday I attended a work seminar. I don’t know if I’ve ever mentioned this before, but I’m an environmental assistant. I came into this position from within the company, so I have a lot to learn. Which is why they sent me to learn about hazardous waste storage, transport, and anything else you never wanted to know about it.

It was out-of-town, but not so far away that I had to sleep at the hotel, so I tore out of my driveway at 6:10 that morning. Ugh. UGH! I almost passed up my office because I didn’t recognize it in the dark. That’s how bad it was. After I did what I had to there, I hit the road for the long trek to Lafayette (Louisiana, of course).

I’ll freely admit…I took the wrong turn to the hotel. I’m punctual. I can’t help it. It’s a quirk. I must get where I’m going on time, or it puts me in a bad mood the rest of the day. I drove the speed limit the entire time and trust me, it wasn’t easy. But out of fear of earning a speeding ticket, thus being late for the seminar, I gritted my teeth and kept my foot off the pedal.

I made it to the seminar with one minute to spare. And there were several times throughout the day that I wish I had gotten lost. It was hell. HELL (which ironically, was one of the songs I listened to on the way there: Hell by the Squirrel Nut Zippers…if you’ve never heard of this song, well, it’s interesting).

Anyway! There was this beautiful man with red hair in the seminar. Great features and I would’ve taken a picture but my phone was wonky about memory *sniff*. So when I wasn’t pretending interest in the lecture, I was staring at him…or trying not to strangle the man next to me who was eating ice. I don’t mind people eating ice. I do it myself, but I try not to do it when you can hear people breathing in a room (yes, it was that quiet).

Um…what else. The instructor was kind of funny, he had a lot of good stories to make it interesting. Lunch was pretty good (turtle cheesecake did wonders for my mood). But the banquet room was stifling. OMG. Honestly. It was horrible.

The wonderful, wonderful instructor let us get out of there early and in my haste to leave, I left my jacket behind. *sniff* Didn’t realize it until I was halfway home. Now I have to try to get the sucker back somehow.

Probably the worse part of the entire day is…even when I did pay attention (which I tried, I really tried)…I still can’t recall anything I learned. My head was filled with information and I know there’s something important I should remember to pass along to my boss, but…I can’t, for the life of me, remember what it was!

So now that I’ve put you all to sleep…have you had to attend any work seminars or lectures to help your job? How did you survive?

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Decidedly un-Cajun

With Easter approaching, people are making plans for Good Friday.

I’m not sure how it works elsewhere, but in South Louisiana, Good Friday is a holiday. Most companies close so their employees can celebrate it with their families. Now, I’m not a good Catholic. I don’t even consider myself Catholic anymore, but I always found it weird that people went a little buck wild on Good Friday. The usual Good Friday celebration includes mounds and mounds of boiled crawfish and beer. It’s almost a requirement.

I remember working for this small company several years ago and they didn’t give us Good Friday off. The boss said he didn’t call it a holiday because we would just go to the lake and get drunk. I didn’t even know where ‘the lake’ was, so I was a little offended by this remark.

So this is how it works. People start calling around to the local crawfish houses the week before Good Friday to find out when they’re taking orders. Then they start planning who’s bringing what and how much. It’s like a race. On Good Friday, cars hit the road in search of crawfish. Some houses take orders ahead of time, some are first come, first serve. Then these brave people return home for the Great Crawfish Boil.

In several ways, boiling crawfish is like barbecuing. It’s mostly cooked by men and each of them have their own method for boiling. Some feel that a lot of salt in the purging process makes a better boil. Others believe it’s all in the boil. Whatever the case, I can’t eat crawfish! *gasp*

Let me just explain. I love crawfish. I looked forward to this time of year every year, up until about seven years ago. The strangest thing started happening when I would eat crawfish: my feet would itch. I’m talking it’s an itch that will. Not. Be. Satisfied. Over the years (before I realized my consumption of crawfish was causing it), the itch would then carry over to my hands…and one time, my throat began to hurt.

This doesn’t happen when I eat the crawfish boil fixings (corn, potatoes, sausage, mushrooms, etc.), only when I eat the actual crawfish. Which kind of defeats the purpose of having a boil in the first place (or attending one). So now, I don’t have that to look forward to and when I mention to people that I can’t eat crawfish, they look like I told them I have leprosy. “What? You can’t…eat crawfish? WHY?” Like it’s a crime, which in this area, I suppose it is.

What Good Friday/Easter traditions are common in your neck of the woods? Is there a local dish that you can’t eat due to an allergy that you dearly wish you could eat? And most importantly, have you ever had crawfish?

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