Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Book BIN Wednesday - Rose And Thorn by Maia Strong

My fantabulous CP, Maia Strong, has a new book out, and it's great. Take a peek!

Eamon Quinn is an actor with designs on a position with Rose & Thorn Theatrics. As a new university graduate, he's up to the acting challenge. He's not so sure he's up to facing life in the big city. That is, until he finds a friend in Jasper Davison. Jasper is intrigued by Eamon, sure that he's a fellow mountain-born soul, which is something Jasper's been missing in coastal Yanuk. When both men are hired by Rose & Thorn, the kindred spirits soon become lovers--and catch the eye of the company's head apprentice, HJ Greenhills.

Bad luck plagues the theatre--accidents, injuries, and a sudden death--leading to rumors of a curse. Weaving sexual energy with Druid magic, Eamon and Jasper seek the truth behind the rumors. But confirming the curse is only the first hurdle. They need to figure out who cast it and how to end it before it causes more harm. Even together, the two men aren't strong enough. Druid magic works best in threes, and so they seek HJ's help to lift the curse. The three put their bodies and energies together to call up the magic they need to try and set things right.

I was lucky enough to read this a few months back, and LOVED it. You should definitely head on over to Torquere and Buy It Now!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

You Could Win!

My author copies of the print version of Take A Chance On Me showed up the other day, and I'm celebrating over on Nine Naughty Novelists. Stop by there to comment, and you'll have a chance to win a copy!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Book BIN Tuesday - Holiday Magic (The Gift Of Love)

Out now, a duo of holiday stories to warm your heart.

Priceless Love

"For Richer, For Poorer."

Taylor Hamilton, dissatisfied with a life designed by her parents, attends a friend's fall wedding and finds small town life agrees with her. The problem is, her wealth doesn't agree with the man she falls for. Is their love strong enough to find a bridge of trust where money isn't an issue?

Healing Love

"In Sickness and in Health."
Nicole Milbourne's single-minded focus on a medical research career is thrown for a loop when charismatic Dr. Damien Reed shows her there's more to life than studying diseases. Will an unexpected Christmas fill Nicole's lonely heart and show her the healing power of love?

This collection by two great authors, Lavada Dee and Laurie Ryan, is sure to hit the holiday spot. So why not head out and Buy It Now?

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Book BIN Tuesday - An Alpha's Path

Yesterday, you met Carrie Ann Ryan. Today, take a peek at her debut book!

Melanie is a twenty-five year old chemist who has spent all of her adult life slaving at school. With her PhD in hand, she's to start her dream job, but before she does, her friend persuades her to relax and try to live again. A blind date set up through her friends seems like the perfect solution. Melanie can take one night away from the lab and let her inner vixen out on a fixed blind date - a chance to get crazy with a perfect stranger. The gorgeous hunk she's to meet exceeds her wildest dreams – be he is more than what he appears and Melanie's analytical mind goes into overdrive.

Kade, a slightly older werewolf (at over one hundred years), needs a night way from the Pack. Too many responsibilities and one near miss with a potential mate made Kade hide in his work, the only peace he can find. His brother convinces him to meet the sexy woman for a one night of fun. What could it hurt? But when he finds this woman could be his mate, can he convince her to leave her orderly, sane world and be with him and his wolf-half, for life?

Sounds fabulous, no? So why not head on out and Buy It Now?

Monday, December 05, 2011

Meet The Author Monday - Carrie Ann Ryan

NAME: Carrie Ann Ryan

TITLE OF FIRST BOOK: An Alpha’s Path – Book 1 of the Redwood Pack Series

RELEASE DATE: Dec 5th, 2011

FAVORITE WRITING STORY/SAYING/MEMORY: My favorite writing memory is when I sat down for NanoWriMo the first time and realized I could actually put words on paper. My fingers typed frantically as the words flowed. It was then I realized I could be a writer – no I was a writer.

FAVORITE NON-WRITING STORY/SAYING/MEMORY: My favorite non writing memory is the day after finals of one of my Chemistry lectures. A young girl came up to me crying and threw herself in my arms. She told me the reason she passed was because I helped her. Then I told her she did it herself because she had it in her. That girl is in her first year of medical school now, and I would be honored to be her patient.

COMFORT FOOD: Rice Krispie Treats and M&Ms. (Yum!) Oh and a Coke. I’m trying to cut back, but mmm....

COMFORT READ: Cry Wolf - Alpha and Omega Book 1, by Patricia Briggs. I love Charles! I see myself in Anna, and want to comfort her.

YOUR PERFECT DAY: Wake up late, eat breakfast in bed with the hubby. Have some good food cooking in the Crockpot as I read a good book out in the warm day. Now that sounds lazy, but so amazing!

WHAT ARE YOU WORKING ON NOW?: A Taste for a Mate – Book 2 of the Redwood Pack Series. (Jasper’s Story)

Monday, November 28, 2011

Last Day For Christmas Freebie!

Just a quick FYI - if you haven't picked up your free copy of Home For Christmas at Barnes and Noble or Amazon, time is running out! The book goes back to regular price after today. So don't wait! Get your free book now!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

No, Not That Kate Davies

I got a lovely email today, from a woman in France. She was highly complimentary and wanted to know if she could sell my work in her store.
The problem? She owned a yarn shop and wanted to sell my knitting patterns.

I don’t knit.

A different Kate Davies, however, does.

That Kate Davies is famous in the textiles world for her Owls sweater pattern, among other things. And this wasn’t the first time I’d been mistaken for her online.

We’re not the only Kate Davies out there, either. I feel a little sorry for the Kate Davies who illustrates Christian children’s books. I’m sure it’s frustrating to know that people looking for “God Loves You” on Amazon end up with lists of my books instead. Same goes for the feminist literature professor whose scholarly works get mixed in with my books as well. (I had to contact Amazon this summer to ask them to take her bio off my author page, as I didn’t want to claim degrees and an academic background I hadn’t earned.)

There’s even a romance written years ago by a different Kate Davies, a book titled When Innocence Trembles. She’s not currently publishing, which is helpful for differentiation purposes, but I still get contacted by readers hoping we’re the same person. An Australian book club wanted to read it for their monthly selection a few months back and wondered if I could help them get their hands on some copies. Sadly, it’s out of print. Also, I didn’t write it.

Then there’s the housing council manager in north England, the peace activist in Seattle, the actress… and those are only the public figures.

The moral of the story? With the world growing smaller every day, and the internet connecting us more and more, when you're considering a name to publish under (even if it's your real one), Google is your friend.

In the meantime, I’ll just continue to politely explain that no, I’m not the Kate Davies they were looking for, and wish them well on their search. And hope that if one of my readers stumbles upon one of them looking for me, they’ll do the same in return.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Book BIN Tuesday - If You Give a Duke a Duchy

Yes, the Nine Naughty Novelists have done it again - our second parody is now available! Here are the details on our very twisted regency:

From the authors who brought you The Zillionaire Vampire Cowboy's Secret Werewolf Babies, comes a new and even more scandalous story of sword-play, sailing ships and sorrowful separations ripped straight from the annals of Regency England: If You Give a Duke a Duchy (or Love’s Savage Whiplash).

Being a Tale of Panting Passion wherein a Disaffected Duke runs away to Sea to become a Pirate and ends up becoming Love Slave to a Ninja Queen, whilst at home he is replaced by a Nefarious Highwayman and ne’er-do-well who is, in turn, Ultimately Redeemed by his love for a Poor but Virtuous Governess.

Look! We even have a book trailer!

And it's only $1.99! How could you go wrong? Really, don't you think you should Buy It Now?

(Also, one week left to pick up Home For Christmas free on Nook and Kindle. Don't miss out!)

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Book BIN Wednesday - Get Home For Christmas FREE!

I'm so excited! For the next two weeks, my holiday novella HOME FOR CHRISTMAS is available for free download, on both Nook and Kindle.

If you haven't read this book yet, now's the time to pick up a free copy. Here's the description, if you're so inclined...

She left everything familiar behind—but love found her anyway.

Sophia is determined to spend Christmas on her own terms this year. Her daughter will be spending the holidays with her boyfriend’s family, and Sophia has no intention of staying home alone with her memories. She knows Ethan would be more than happy to keep her company. But he’s her business partner—and her late husband’s best friend. It’s past time to stop leaning on him and learn to stand on her own two feet. A cruise to the Caribbean might be just the ticket to discovering who she is now, and what she really wants.

Ethan is stunned to discover that Sophia has decided to go on a cruise for Christmas—alone. He’d thought something more was finally developing between the two of them. If she’s ready to move on after the loss of her husband, he’ll be damned if he lets her move on without him!

On the spur of the moment, Ethan books a stateroom, determined to prove to Sophia that what they have goes far beyond friendship. The romantic atmosphere of the cruise sparks a passion the two had only dreamed of before—but can their fledgling relationship survive beyond the vacation of a lifetime?

Warning, this title contains the following: explicit sex, graphic language (but don’t tell my mom).

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Book BIN Tuesday - Because of You

I have been looking forward to this book for AGES. So glad it's finally here! Take a peek:

From the war-torn streets of Baghdad to the bittersweet comforts of the home front, two wounded hearts navigate the battlefield of coming home from war in this explosive eBook original from newcomer Jessica Scott.
Keeping his men alive is all that matters to Sergeant First Class Shane Garrison. But meeting Jen St. James the night before his latest deployment makes Shane wonder if there's more to life than war. He leaves for Iraq remembering a single kiss with a woman he'll never see again- until a near fatal attack lands him back at home and in her care.
Jen has survived her own brush with death and endured its scars. And yet there's a fire in Shane that makes Jen forget all about her past. He may be her patient, but when this warrior looks her in the eyes, she feels - for the first time in a long time - like a woman. Shane is too proud to ask for help, but for Jen, caring for him is more than a duty -it's a need. And as Jen guides Shane through the fires of healing, she finds something she never expected - her deepest desire.
Cannot wait to get this on my nook! So why not head over to your nearest e-tailer and Buy It Now?
Barnes and Noble

Monday, November 14, 2011

Meet the Author Monday - Jessica Scott

I'm super excited to host debut author Jessica Scott for Meet The Author Monday this week! Her first novel, Because of You, comes out today, and it sounds fantastic. Here's a little about Jessica:

NAME: Jessica Scott




RELEASE DATE: November 14

FAVORITE WRITING STORY/SAYING/MEMORY: Nora Roberts from RWA 10: Reader A will love a book for the same reason Reader B will want to burn it.

FAVORITE NON-WRITING STORY/SAYING/MEMORY: Get better every day and never quit. ~ Greywolf 6 (my former brigade commander)

COMFORT FOOD: Godiva Chocolate
COMFORT READ: The Shadow and the Star by Laura Kinsale or more recently, Archangel’s Blade by Nalini Singh

YOUR PERFECT DAY: pajama day, hanging around the house with my kiddos doing not much of anything

WHAT ARE YOU WORKING ON NOW?: I’m working on revisions for Trent’s book, the 2nd book in my Coming Home series, BACK TO YOU. Then I’m working on the 1st draft of book 3, UNTIL THERE WAS YOU.

...don't forget to stop by tomorrow to find out all about her first book!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Thursday Thirteen - Thirteen Reasons I'm Excited About My New Job

1. It's in my hometown! We've wanted to move closer to family for a while now, and this gives us the opportunity.
2. It's full time pay for full time work.
3. I've met my supervisor and some colleagues, and they seem really great. I'm looking forward to being part of that team.
4. It's cutting-edge - working with technology in an educational setting.
5. Shopping! I've been working from home for years, so I have get to update my wardrobe and wear some cool new clothes.
6. Connected to the last one -  SHOES.
7. I have my own office!
8. A set schedule. Hopefully, by having a start and end time, I'll be able to get *more* writing done, rather than trying to fit it in around a job that expanded to fill all my off hours.
9. A new house! (Once we buy it, that is.)
10. New tech! I'm a kid in a candy store around new technology, so when I saw the stuff I get to use for the job, I was *thrilled*.
11. Kids closer to cousins. Family is so important to us, so this is a big one.
12. Great opportunity for growth. New challenges that will keep me up to date in my field.
13. Husband will get to buy a new guitar. :) (Guess who suggested that one?)

Today's my first day, so wish me luck!

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

New Pic of Eric!

By request, because some people can't access the photo on twitter or Facebook...

Book BIN Tuesday - Hotblooded

Ooh! A new book by Erin Nicholas!

Her mama always said the women in their family were hotblooded...

And it's been causing Brooke Donovan trouble her whole life. But it wasn't until her mother took on the most powerful man in Honey Creek, Texas, that Brooke truly realized the daughter of the town whore didn't stand a chance. When she left, it was supposed to be for good. But now, thanks to her late husband's deal with their hometown, she's back in the last place on earth she wants to be. Temporarily. As soon as her debts are paid off, she's outta here. Until in walks the one man who can make her rethink everything.

Dr. Jack Silver fixes things. So, when he learns his uncle is responsible for Brooke losing her husband, his sense of honor drives him across Texas to make amends. Instead of a broken woman, though, he finds a gorgeous, feisty physician's assistant trying to survive in a town that wants her gone. She also has a mile-high fence built out of pride—and a clinic that's at risk of going belly up. She may not want his money, but the clinic? He can fix that. He just never expects that in setting Brooke back on her feet, he'll be swept right off his own.

Warning: Contains a hot-blooded woman, a man who really likes that about her, a town with a long memory, and a cappuccino machine that makes it all worthwhile.

Yum! Sounds delish. Think I'll head on out and Buy It Now!

Sunday, November 06, 2011

Thursday Thirteen - Thirteen Things I'll Miss When We Move

Though my job has started, we're still in the process of moving (have to sell the house first). So I have one foot in two locations - home (on the weekends) and the new city (during the week). And as anxious as I am to get settled in a new house, especially since I miss my family horribly during the week, there are a lot of things I'll miss about our current location once we move.

1. My friends. I've made some wonderful friends here, and I'll miss them so much.

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Book BIN Tuesday - Trust Me If You Dare

Ooh! LB Gregg has a new book out in paperback today!

Hard help can be good to find.

Romano and Albright, Book 2

Feisty New Yorker Caesar Romano has a knack for getting into a jam, and this week is no exception. When his pregnancy-hormone-buzzed business partner sweet talks him into working a solo gig for his famous ex, Caesar attracts the worst kind of attention.

It’s only the beginning. Hit on by a lusty German, stalked by the paparazzi, victim of an unexpected airbag attack—and desperate for some part-time help—Ce’s running out of time, staff and patience. But what’s really got him poised to run? A looming brunch with his sexy lover’s esteemed family.

PI Dan Albright is a man of many gifts: investigation, security, sex talk and driving Caesar nuts in and out of the bedroom. Hired to protect an outrageous soap star from a deranged personal assistant, Dan’s got his hands full refereeing rival actors, locating one four-foot-eleven woman…and convincing Ce that he’s playing for keeps.

Hey, nobody ever said taking a relationship to the next level was a waltz in the park.
Warning: This book includes bad driving, a naughty German, dirty words, heated glances, mutual masturbation, oral sex, an evil scout, a memorable ride, and a fabulously affordable tuxedo. May cause unexpected bursts of laughter.


Sounds fun, no? So why not Buy It Now?

Monday, October 31, 2011

No Tricks, Just Treats!

I spent the weekend at the Emerald City Writer's Conference and had a blast hanging out with three of the Naughty Nine - Kelly Jamieson, Erin Nicholas, and PG Forte. Erin posted a little wrap-up on the Naughty blog, if you'd like to see what trouble we got up to! (Hint: I did not live up to my costume.)

Also, the Kelly Jamieson Shoe Challenge netted a total of 20 books to give away, and last time I looked we had fewer than 20 entries, so your chances are excellent that you'll get one! Stop by this post to comment to win!

And finally, Samhain is giving a 30% discount today only - enter SPHW11 in your "treat bag" and get 30% off your entire order! (I recommend Ritual Love - my Halloween-set Scottish time travel romance. )

Have a fabulous, fun-filled day!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Book BIN Tuesday - One Wicked Night

Ooh, Kelly Jamieson has a new book out!

The boys are back in town…

Ten years ago, Kaelin Daume spent a steamy summer home from college secretly hanging out with town bad boy Tyler Wirth and his best friend Nick Kernsted. The connection was warm, complicated, and came to a crashing end when she walked in on her two forbidden friends with another woman. The shocking scene of sex and bondage has haunted her boring, oh-so-vanilla life ever since.

The fallout from that night tore Tyler’s life apart. He left Mapleglen, disowned and disgraced, to build a successful advertising career and a unique relationship with Nick. Nothing could bring him back except his sister’s wedding, and he plans to hightail it back to Chicago as soon as it’s over. At least one good thing hasn’t changed: Kaelin is as sweet as ever. Except she doesn’t seem too thrilled to hear it.

As tensions run high, Kaelin can’t resist the temptation to commit one crazy act of rebellion. Once the web of secrets, sins and lies starts to unravel, though, their lives will never be the same…
Product Warnings

This book contains a nice girl who gets her naughty on with two hot men. M/M/F and M/M scenes may cause an increase in body temperature, pulse rate and respiration. Read with caution! For adult use only.
Sounds hawt, doesn't it? So why not head on over to Samhain and Buy It Now?

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Book BIN Tuesday - Shine by Lauren Myracle

Last week, the National Book Awards Young Readers shortlist was announced, and SHINE by Lauren Myracle was on the list.

Then another book, CHIME, was added. And the people in charge of the award admitted that someone had mis-heard the title, including the wrong book (SHINE) instead of the actual one chosen by the panel (CHIME). But both books would remain on the shortlist! Everything was fine, other than the fact that they'd announced to the world that Lauren SHINE really hadn't earned the nomination!

Fast-forward to Monday, when Ms. Myracle withdrew her book from consideration after being asked to do so by the NBA. To "preserve the integrity of the award".

Maybe it's just me, but dragging an author's name and book through the proverbial mud because YOU made a mistake doesn't do much for the integrity of the award, either.

Anyway, in an effort to boost the signal on what appears to be a great, important, relevant YA novel, I'm featuring SHINE as today's Book BIN offering. (My kids also adore her other books, so that's a plus.) Let's show the author some support by picking up a copy! Here are the deets:

When her best guy friend falls victim to a vicious hate crime, sixteen-year-old Cat sets out to discover who in her small town did it. Richly atmospheric, this daring mystery mines the secrets of a tightly knit Southern community and examines the strength of will it takes to go against everyone you know in the name of justice.

Against a backdrop of poverty, clannishness, drugs, and intolerance, Myracle has crafted a harrowing coming-of-age tale couched in a deeply intelligent mystery. Smart, fearless, and compassionate, this is an unforgettable work from a beloved author.

So what are you waiting for? Go on out and Buy It Now!

Sunday, October 09, 2011

Monday Movie Musings - Incontheivable!

So fellow Naughty Nine-er Erin Nicholas sent me a link on twitter to a video of a Princess Bride reunion today.  Setting aside the fact that I was shocked and appalled that this movie is now OVER TWENTY YEARS OLD, it was lovely to be reminded of how much I love The Princess Bride.

The dialogue is crackling, the characters well-drawn, the humor abundant, and the romance, well, romantic. It was one of my favorites from my college years, and I think it holds up well today.

How about you? When you think of favorite movies from your younger days, what comes to mind?   video platformvideo managementvideo solutionsvideo player

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Diva, Please! My Thoughts On Last Night's GLEE

So last night I watched Glee with my kids. We loved the Mike Chang storyline, grooved on Brittany's girl power number, awwww-ed over the sweet (but short) Klaine moments, and adored the Dreamgirls piece. I may have shrieked a little when Emma's ginger supremacist parents showed up (RALPH MALPH!), even though my kids thought I was a little nuts.

(All I can say is thank goodness for Twitter, where I found other Happy Days fans to squee with.)

But the Mercedes/Rachel diva-off left a seriously bad taste in my mouth.

Don't get me wrong, Rachel is The Character Most Likely To Irritate Me On A Regular Basis. I went into the episode predisposed to support Mercedes' side of the situation. But her sense of entitlement, lack of willingness to put in the effort necessary to succeed, and overall arrogance made it impossible for me to support her decision.

First, a callback is NOT an insult. It's a normal part of theater practice. Asking both of them to sing again was perfectly reasonable under the circumstances.

Second, double-casting is ALSO not unheard of in theater circles. Again, it's not an insult - it's an attempt to give the spotlight to two talented actors, especially in a significant role like Maria. And for once, Rachel suppressed her inner diva long enough to congratulate Mercedes, to swallow down her disappointment and give props to her friend and rival. (Of course, she also assumed she'd get the best performance slots and Mercedes would get the less-attended ones, but that's minor compared to Mercedes' full-on diva meltdown.)

So Mercedes tells the directors to shove it - and why? What in her behavior and attitude indicated that she was done wrong? (In this situation, of course. Like I said, I was predisposed to be on her side, since I do think that in the past she HAS been shunted aside and ignored in favor of Rachel.)

She blew off dance practice and whined about it (and she wants to play the lead in a musical? Honey, you can't make it through a few dance moves, you'll never survive a full-on production). She complained non-stop about how she deserved to shine - but what did she do to EARN it?

Okay, the episode clearly pushed some buttons for this former actor/drama teacher/playwright.

And then Rachel went and blew my newly-earned sympathy by shafting Kurt in the Class President race. Ugh. You're back on my bad side, kid.

Never mind me. I'll just be rolling around in the awesomesauce that is Mike Chang, Brittany, and Klaine. At least until the hiatus is over!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Never Say Goodbye

Today Roman Wild died.
I know this because my tweetstream is full of sad, tear-filled updates; because I read the spoilers a month or so ago and learned that would be his fate; because I knew the actor was leaving the show and had a feeling they'd be going in that direction rather than letting him head off to Hamburg for a seminar and never come home.
I know this, but I haven't seen it. I haven't watched Alles Was Zaehlt for months, and even when most of my online AWZ-friends were returning for the last story arc, I couldn't bring myself to join them.
TV deaths hit me hard, y'all.
I get invested in characters all the time. I follow their relationships and struggles, I worry about their choices, I connect to their hopes and dreams. If well written and acted, I'm *there*.
Which is why, when a beloved character is killed off on one of my shows, it guts me. I was a wreck when Reid was offed by a literal and figurative train wreck on ATWT; I still mourn for Ianto from Torchwood.
By all accounts, Roman's passing has been an incredible story arc, and I'm sure it doesn't suffer from Needless Death For Emotional Manipulation And Stupid Plotlines, as happened to Ianto and Reid. People who are watching are full of praise for the tour de force acting. I'm sure, if I could watch with a little more distance, I would be blown away by the skill invested in this final storyline.
But I don't have distance. I love Roman, with all his quirks and foibles and all-too-human weaknesses, with his strength and fierce determination and all-encompassing love for the people who matter to him. And I can't be there for this story now. Sometimes I wish I could. But then, if I could, I wouldn't be me, would I?
Best wishes to Dennis Grabosch, who created one of the most memorable characters I've ever seen on screen; kudos to Igor Dolgatschew for meeting him step by step along the way in a pairing that made both of them stronger actors.
And hugs and tissues for those who are watching. Maybe someday I'll be able to do the same.

Sunday, September 04, 2011

Monday Movie Musings - Changes at IHMTD

Okay, it's not really a movie, but the changes being chatted about concerning new fall FOX comedy I Hate My Teenage Daughter have been on my mind lately.

First, what was already the latest premiere of the fall season has been pushed back even later, to November 30. The first premiere date, November 23, didn't make a whole lot of sense - it's the day before Thanksgiving, and you wouldn't expect it to get much attention (or ratings) then. But a week later pushes it even closer to the winter hiatus season. How many episodes will actually be shown before they go to reruns or holiday specials? At this point, they should just call it a midseason replacement and go with a January premiere.

Then comes the news that they're already retooling the show (which, to be honest, was one of the things I crossed my fingers for when I first heard they were premiering so late in the first place). When I attended the filming, I thought it was funny, but definitely a traditional sitcom-style show (not a bad thing, but it is what it is). And I was very impressed with the cast - the talent there was impressive.

But the show has been eviscerated by the critics. Absolutely shredded. And my hope was that the added time before the show premiered would give them an opportunity to change things up, maybe bring the show and script up to the level of the performers.

So word is (in the new issue of Entertainment Weekly) that they've done some reshoots that make them more confident in the show. The problem? The example given is that Eric's character, Matt, was changed to seem "less pathetic".

Okay. I have no issue with Eric being given more material, or his character switched up. But of all the negative reviews of the show (and believe me, I've read almost all of them -yeah, I'm a little invested in IHMTD succeeding), not one of them said anything negative about Eric or his performance. NOTHING. It's all about the parenting fail by the female characters, or the tone of the show, or the laugh track - but not a single critic has said, "I hated the character of Matt and it killed the show for me."

So, uhm, I really hope that's just one of the changes, and they've done other adjustments to the pilot to help it be successful - and prove the critics wrong. Even if it does start so late in the year.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Monday Movie Musings - Glee 3D

So this weekend I took the kids to see Glee 3D, which we'd talked about seeing when it came out but were either gone or busy for most of that first week. Of course, now it's pretty much gone from theaters, so we had to drive an hour to one of only three theaters in a 100 mile radius to still be showing it.

I'll spare you my usual "I hate 3D" rant, which I'm sure you'll appreciate. :)

(But honestly, I think the movie would have been just as enjoyable - maybe more - if it had been regular 2D style.)

Overall, we enjoyed the film, though the kids wanted to know why the Klaine skit was barely shown, and midkid joked that it was too bad Blaine had no furniture to climb on.

We all agreed that since the concert series never made it to our neck of the woods, this was a worthy fill-in.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Book BIN Tuesday - It's Always Been You

Victoria Dahl has a new historical out!
Once She Slipped Through His Fingers. . .

Aidan York has spent ten years mourning the woman he once loved and lost. He's filled the void in the only way he knows—by distracting himself with wild behavior and scandalous trysts. It's a hollow existence, but it dulls the pain. Until the day he encounters a ghost: the woman he thought drowned at sea, alive and as enchanting as ever. . .

Now He'll Keep Her In His Arms. . ..

When Kate Hamilton sees the man she once hoped to spend her life with, she is hit with a storm of memories and longing. But though resisting Aidan's passion proves impossible, Kate must try not to love him all over again. For her seemingly quiet London life shields a dangerous secret, one that will catch up to her the moment she lets herself fall. . .
Sounds deliciously angsty, doesn't it? Why not take a chance and Buy It Now?

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Guest Blogging, and a late Book BIN Rec!

I swear, the summer months have me all confuzzled. I missed my guest blog day on International Heat, which bums me out, since there were some good comments that were left hanging, but never fear! I've dropped by and am hanging out there now. If you are curious about my tips on getting naughty, take a peek here.

Also, blogmate Kinsey Holley has a new book out as of today, and I missed featuring it! So here are the deets - go check it out!


Sometimes a girl’s gotta save herself.

A Werewolves in Love story.

Sara Hedges had planned to escape the backwater, bigoted town of Luxor, Texas on the wings of a college degree—not on the back of a Harley, riding for her life.

Just a couple months shy of loading up her Miata, however, betrayal bares its ugly fangs. Her scumbag uncle has sold her to a pack of werewolves willing to pay any price for her special bloodline and it looks like there’s no way out. She never expected the new-in-town, sex-on-a-stick loner to come riding to her rescue. Or to discover he’s a werewolf, too. A good one...with one too many secrets.

Bryan Keeton waited two months deep undercover for the chance to get his hands on one of the gangster Eurowolves wreaking havoc across the South. After calling in the FBI to blow the lid off Luxor, he’d planned to leave town before he did something he might regret—like get involved with the suspect’s niece.

But Sara makes him stupid. And now they’re on the run from the Feds, who aren’t interested in her innocence, and from the wolves who want her for their own personal squeaky toy…
Product Warnings
This story includes an undercover alpha with a sexy Texan drawl, a heroine with a dangerous secret, a ring of wolves willing to pay just about anything to own her, and a small town that needs to learn a little something about tolerance.

Monday, August 08, 2011

Have a Question for Kate?

Happy Monday, all!

I've just agreed to do a guest blog post, which will go up next month. One of the options is an interview format, where I can pick questions to answer about writing, life, whatever I want.

But I stink at coming up with questions, so I'm opening it up to you first - what do you want to know about me? Post your questions in the comments, and I'll grab a few for the interview!


And on a completely unrelated note, I've signed up for Kindlegraph, a cool new service that provides autographs for your Kindle titles. (No, I won't be writing on your screen with a sharpie.) It's free, so if you've ever wanted a signed Kindle ebook cover for one of my titles, head on over here to request one.


Another unrelated note! (I seem to have a surplus of them today, LOL) Last week, the German TV production company RTL started enforcing its copyright claim, which resulted in the closure of some YouTube channels which had been translating, subtitling, and posting clips of its shows for an international audience. One of the main shows was Alles Was Zaehlt, the German soap I watched for a couple of years via YouTube (since I don't speak German). That first channel, EskimoKissProject, was spared the purge, on request of one of the actors. He's asked that they be allowed to translate and post his final story arc on the show, as it was their translation and subtitling work that first brought him (and the show) an international audience.
They're being given the chance to do just that, but once the story arc has ended, so will their channel, along with all the videos (hundreds of them!) that they've created over the years. If you haven't been introduced to Roman and Deniz, I'd recommend you take a peek now before it's too late.
As for the final story arc, well, let's just say there are spoilers out there for those who want to know, and they aren't too hard to find. :)

Monday, August 01, 2011

Monday Movie Musings - Harry Potter 7.2

So, I finally got to see the last Harry Potter movie, and loved, loved, loved it! I thought the acting was superb, the cinematography excellent, and the entire experience moving and enjoyable.
I also saw it in glorious 2-D, since 3-D glasses give me a massive headache. Luckily, my kids are indifferent to the 2-vs-3 D debate, and were just happy to see the movie while it was still in theaters. (We're still in hot water for missing Pirates of the Caribbean 4, despite the negative reviews. They didn't care that the movie was likely horrible - they wanted to see it on the big screen!)
Next movie up? The Glee movie, most likely, since FutureStar and Midkid both love the music.
What's next on your list?

Monday, July 25, 2011

Book BIN Tuesday - Playing Dirty

Eeeeee! Susan Andersen has a new release!

I'm a huge fan of her work, and a new book is reason to celebrate. Especially when it sounds as good as this one!


When high school golden boy Cade Gallari publicly revealed he’d slept with “fat girl” Ava Spencer to win a bet, he broke her heart. Now a decade older and a head-turner with her own concierge business, Ava isn’t the gullible dreamer she once was—and she plans to prove it when Cade, hotter than ever, breezes back into town with an offer she can’t refuse.

A documentary film producer, Cade is shooting a movie about the mysterious mansion Ava inherited. And he wants her as his personal concierge. She’s certainly professional enough to be at his beck and call without giving him everything he wants. Like another shot at having her in his bed. But Ava doesn’t count on Cade’s determination. Because he’s never gotten over her. And he’s not above playing dirty to score a second chance at a red-hot future…


Doesn't that sound fabulous? So why not pick up a copy and Buy It Now?

Monday Movie Musings - So Many Movies, So Little Time!

Like many parents, I've fallen out of the habit of seeing films in the theater. The cost of tickets, added to babysitting costs and assorted sundry expenses, not to mention the time involved, made it more alluring to wait for the video or cable release and watch movies then. Some films, though, don't translate well to the small screen. And, of course, as my kids have gotten older, they've wanted to go to the movies instead of watching them at home.

So I'm looking at the movies that are in theaters now and making a list of films I want to see in their bigger than life incarnations.

1. Harry Potter, 7.2. This is a no-brainer, especially since FutureStar and Midkid have been chomping at the bit to see it, too. We'll probably go this week (though I'll never fully win them back after missing the midnight showing for the LAST HARRY POTTER MOVIE EVER.)

2. Cars 2. Not one I'm dying to see on the big screen, but GPS is, so to keep the movie-going-with-kids in balance, we'll be heading out to the multiplex for this one as well.

3. Cowboys & Aliens. Harrison Ford. Daniel Craig. An old-fashioned western until the spaceships arrive. Can't wait!

4. Captain America. Intrigued by the positive buzz I've been hearing lately.

5. Lefty Loosey, Righty Tighty. Okay, this one's a wish list movie, since it hasn't been released yet (it hasn't even hit the festival circuit!), but I'd love to see this one on the big screen.

How about you? What movies are you looking forward to, or have enjoyed already this summer? And do you prefer seeing films in the theater, or in the comfort of your own home?

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

She's Baaaa-aaack!

It's been a month since I last blogged?


*checks calendar*


*checks calendar again*

Oh, of course. That was the end of the school year. Makes perfect sense now.

Since then, I've:

1. Spent time with the family (all home for the summer);
2. Gone on vacation across the state;
3. Traveled to Oklahoma City for a day-job-related conference;
4. Read some great books;
5. Taken up golf (with the hubs);
6. Written!

...and there's more where that came from, with a camping trip and various day excursions planned for the rest of the summer. But I'm adding blogging back in, both because I've missed it and because I've got some exciting stuff coming up.

Including a new interview that's in the works! I think you'll be as excited as I am once you see who I get to chat with next. :)

In the meantime, here's a great deal I found out about yesterday. My Siren-Bookstrand erotic romance, Hooked, has been selected for their Retro Romance promotion, which means it's on sale here for only $1.99 until August 2. Pretty cool, huh?

Stop by tomorrow for a new Inspiration Friday post, and next week I'll be sharing some of my summer vacation pics, including one with me standing next to a giant metal chicken.

See you then!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

VSC Auction, and Come See Me on NNN!

Just got back from a weekend fastpitch tournament, and I'm wiped, but wanted to let you all know about a couple of things.

First, if you (like me) were a fan of Reid Oliver on ATWT, there's a great auction going on over at for some memorabilia from his time on the show. You can bid on the Harvard diploma that was seen hanging on his office wall in his very first episode, or the script from his final appearance on ATWT, autographed by Eric himself. Proceeds benefit the Vermont Shakespeare Company. Bidding will be taking place until June 26, so if you're interested, be sure to take a peek!

Also, I'm blogging over on Nine Naughty Novelists today about the Four Stages of Internet Embarrassment. Stop by and say hello!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The End is Nigh...

School gets out next week, and I'm on the last stretch of no-kids-at-home time before the horde descends for the summer. I'm really looking forward to the family time, but until that happens, I've got paperwork from the day job up to my eyeballs and not enough hours in the day to catch up.

So long story short, I may be scarce from the blog for a while. Look for me on Inspiration Friday, and I'll try to pop in with other posts when I can. You can also find me on Twitter and Facebook. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Book BIN Tuesday - Restraining the Receptionist

There's a new book out this week from the pen of Juniper Bell! Here are the deets:

Every deal has a loophole.

…the Receptionist, Book 2

Dana Arthur’s new job with the firm of Cowell & Dirk is going well. Translation: the occasionally kinky ménage with her two bosses, Ethan and Simon, has been several months of politically incorrect bliss.

Except the relationship feels unbalanced. While Ethan is the undisputed master, the partners’ iron-clad agreement stipulates that Simon must be present as she performs her “duties”. And she senses there’s a subtle, powerful tug-of-war developing for more than just her body.

Simon had agreed to share the firm’s fiery, sensually daring receptionist…to a point. With Simon out of town, Ethan plans a feast of erotic temptations designed to have Dana begging him to break the deal. He didn’t realize his heart would be a casualty.

Once she surrenders to his wicked demands, Dana realizes there’s no going back. It’s time for a three-way renegotiation…this time, all or nothing.

Product Warning

NSFW!! Do Not Try This at Your Job. Contains highly inappropriate workplace behavior including m/f/m, m/m, bondage, creative use of office space and a high-stakes trip to Atlantic City.


Whew! That should heat up your week, don't you think? So why not head over to Samhain and Buy It Now?

Monday, June 13, 2011

"Hi Kate" Inspires a Birthday Surprise!

Exhibit A

Okay, I know, it can't be much of a surprise if it's being planned and executed publicly online, but the thought is there, right?

In any case, fans of Eric Sheffer Stevens are putting together a photo collage birthday present/card for him, asking people to send in pictures of themselves holding "Happy Birthday Eric" signs with their name and town on them. If you're a fan and want to participate, send in your pic by Friday the 17th to Easy peasy, right?

Have a great week!

Thursday, June 09, 2011


Okay, someone out there who watches One Life To Live - is Jean Passanante really recycling the tragic-death-leads-to-heart-transplant storyline on that soap as well?

That's the rumor I've been hearing, and if it's true, I'm absolutely disgusted.

It was bad enough that she was responsible for the ridiculous, anvil-laden, offensive killing off of one of the most popular new characters on daytime at the end of As The World Turns. She and her team took a promising storyline - the Luke and Reid romance - and shoved it on the backburner, destroyed its momentum, dialed down the heat and sexual tension until it almost disappeared (it's a testament to the talent of the actors that they were able to maintain any romantic spark through months of "I want you and I will show you how much by brushing lint off your shoulder" bs), and shifted the focus to Reid the brain surgeon trying to save the life of a self-centered jerk who refuses proper medical care and exacerbates his own health issues. Followed by a meaningless death and the character assassination of almost everyone involved in the storyline.

And now she's doing it again? On another show?

And I hear this is actually the THIRD time she's done the same storyline?

I have a hint, OLTL team - GET SOME NEW IDEAS.

And if your writing team is incapable of doing that on their own, it might be a good idea to GET SOME NEW WRITERS AS WELL.

*wanders off, grumbling under my breath*

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


FutureStar has been working on a poster this week, for school, that apparently required large quantities of glitter. Glitter designs, glitter over glue, glitter glitter glitter.

Of course, we now have glitter everywhere. Kitchen floor, family room carpet, kitchen table, pretty much every pair of socks in the household, even FutureStar's eyebrows (don't ask).

It's a great poster, and it's been fun watching FS really focus all that energy on making it the best one possible.

So the proliferation of glitter is a small price to pay, really.

It also reminds me of my first-ever published work, a poem that was included in my college literary magazine. I'd written for years before that, but this was the first time I'd ever held my own work in published form, and it was magical.

Funny thing is, I'd submitted a bunch of poems, almost all of them emo and "deep", and they picked the light-hearted one I'd tossed in on a whim. And a year later, a friend told me that they'd been sharing favorite poems in class and someone had read mine. Just goes to show that you never know what's going to make the biggest impact.

So here it is! My first published work:


somebody spilled
glitter on the hallway rug
bare feet scuff up a cloud of stars
galaxies sparkling
I dance
through the Milky Way
(wrap Orion's belt around my big toe)
and waltz off to bed
Cassiopeia clinging to my heels

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Monday (Not Quite) Movie Musings - My TV Week

(<--- This guy's got a busy week ahead. I think that's why he looks so serious in this picture.)

Sorry, don't have a movie to feature this week. But it's a busy TV week, so that's a decent replacement, right?

MONDAY marks both the start of the network upfronts (when the networks unveil their schedules for the fall season) and the season finale of Hawaii Five-0. I'm excited (and nervous) for the finale, but even moreso for the upfronts, as Fox is revealing their schedule at 3 pm. Will I Hate My Teenage Daughter be on the schedule, or will they hold it as a midseason replacement? With only two hours of programming a night, and large chunks of primetime real estate already claimed by the X Factor and American Idol, nothing is guaranteed until the schedule is out there in black and white.

Oh, and I'll be watching the second to last episode of Chicago Code and sniffling.

ETA: FOX has released their primetime schedule a few hours before their upfronts! I Hate My Teenage Daughter will be on Wednesdays at 9:30 following The X Factor. This is excellent scheduling because a) following a sure-fire ratings juggernaut will bring a built-in audience to the show, and b) I don't already watch anything during that time slot so I won't have to make any hard decisions!

Then there's TUESDAY, with Glee (only a couple of episodes left!) and more upfronts. Not sure which networks roll out the schedules. I'm looking forward to seeing what happens with ABC, since soap fans are planning to protest outside. Also have heard that The Chew and The Revolution, the shows destined to replace All My Children and One Life To Live, are looking pretty lame. Awesome work, ABC Daytime!

Then, at 10 pm, there's a new episode of Body Of Proof, with this guy named Eric Sheffer Stevens in a guest role. If you've ever read this blog, you may have heard of him before. I think I've mentioned him once or twice. (translation: OMG SQUEE I'VE GOT IT SCHEDULED ON MY DVR ALREADY CAN'T WAIT.)

WEDNESDAY is set aside for CBS upfronts, which I'm really only interested in because of Hawaii Five-0 (and now that it's been announced ahead of time that it's been renewed for next year, I'm just waiting to see if they've switched nights.)

Nothing more really exciting that I know about until SUNDAY, when apparently that guy I just mentioned is also guesting on Law and Order: Criminal Intent. (translation: OMG HOW DID I NOT KNOW THAT UNTIL TODAY I HAVE FAILED AS A FANGIRL BUT AT LEAST I'VE MANAGED TO SCHEDULE IT ON MY DVR NOW.)
ETA #2 - First promo pic for IHMTD! ESS is second from the left. That's the costume he wore in the pilot. Wheee!

So there you have it, my TV week in a nutshell. What are you watching/following/looking forward to?

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Damaging A Character

Monday night is date night TV night in the Davies' household.

First Chicago Code (sob!), followed by Hawaii Five-0 (just renew the damn show, CBS, okay?), it's appointment TV night for my husband and me. (I also watch Glee on Tuesdays, but that's not his thing.) We go from gritty to sun-drenched in the space of two hours, and I love both shows.

But I discovered something about myself as a viewer, and the shows I watch, last Monday. Because my two favorite characters on these two shows brought up a specific issue, and my reaction to it was diametrically opposed.


On the Chicago Code, main character Jarek is a cop with an ex-wife he still has feelings for. They have a child together. And all season, the two of them have been sleeping together, regardless of the fact that he has a fiancee he theoretically loves as well.

On Hawaii Five-0, Danny Williams is a cop with an ex-wife he still has feelings for. They have a child together. And in the last five minutes of Monday's episode, we find out that apparently they've been doing the infidelity dance as well.

(The whole WTF exchange: Steve says, so, you and Rachel. How long...? Danny responds, "a little while.")

So why do I accept the infidelity on the part of Jarek, but get infuriated at the thought of Danny doing the same thing?

Well, on Chicago Code, Jarek has been set up character-wise to make this choice believable. He cuts corners. He skirts the edge of legal when it suits his purposes, and rarely has a qualm about it. He is a gray-area character. More importantly, it's been a thing all season long, and one of the defining elements of his character.

On Hawaii Five-0, Danny has been set up all season as the moral compass of the team. He's the one shouting about procedure and suspect's rights and doing the right thing. Does he always manage it? No, but he tries, because it matters to him.

So for him to apparently start sleeping with a married woman - regardless of the fact that she's his ex - struck me as out of character and, more significantly, out of left field.

Yes, the pining (on both Danny's and Rachel's parts) has been signposted throughout the season, and the troubles in Rachel and Stan's marriage have been mentioned before. I actually liked that element, as we watched them grow from battling exes with "Psycho" ringtones and custody battles that required intercession from the governor into two people who were finding a way to be friendly co-parents.

I was even fine with the forehead-kissing and falling asleep on the hospital bed and the pining glances as she drove away. The lost love you always regret is a fantastic trope in a TV show like this, and it really worked for them. But to suddenly (and confusingly) suggest that they're actually sleeping together and have been for a while? It made no sense to me. And I believe it made no sense for the character.

Gracie also factors into this. The child is not stupid. And if her parents, both of whom she loves, are suddenly making googly eyes at each other and hugging and acting all couply, she's going to start hoping they'll get back together. And unfortunately, for these two, love wasn't enough to conquer the issues that tore them apart previously, issues that are even more looming now. Danny's dangerous job? Even more dangerous. Financial issues? Not going away. And on a practical, TV show note, happy couples aren't interesting over the long run. No way are the PTB going to allow Danny to have a happy home life for any length of time. So how much is it going to mess up that little girl to have her hopes for a reunited family dashed AGAIN?

In short, because of the way the character of Danny Williams has been revealed to us over the season, I was disappointed and angered by the turn taken on Monday's episode. And much as I hate to admit it, it makes me look at him in a less positive light now. I hope that changes soon, because I really do love the character and would hate to have that color the way I look at him from now on.

One good thing I'll be taking away from this is the reaffirmation that motivation and character development matter. And you can bet I'll be applying that knowledge to the characters I write as well as the ones I watch on my television screen.

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Love's Savage Whiplash goes live!

Hie thee to Nine Naughty Novelists for the first installment of Love's Savage Whiplash, our new group story. This rousing regency romp has it all - mistaken identity, dashing rogues, nefarious villains, pirates, even ninjas! Because what's a regency romp with out ninjas, am I right?

Every Thursday we'll be posting a new chapter, so be sure to stop by every week for more!

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Book BIN Tuesday - Fourth and Goal

Jami Davenport has a new book out with Loose ID, and it looks like a really fun read! Here are the deets:

In a game played on and off the field, only one of them will emerge the winner.

Armed with an uncanny ability for evaluating football talent, a dogged determination to succeed in a man’s world, and an empty bank account, Rachel McCormick agrees to help struggling wide receiver Derek Ramsey get his game back. Rachel believes Derek, her former best friend and lover, knows the truth behind a points-shaving scandal which ruined her father. She vows to expose the secret even if it destroys Derek in the process.

When Derek’s coach suggests sex as an excellent tension reliever the night before a game, Rachel takes one for the team. The next day, Derek has the best performance of his not-so lustrous pro football career. As Derek and Rachel rack up nights in bed and other places, the team racks up wins on the field. Rachel is torn between her loyalty to her father and her growing affection for Derek. Now it’s fourth and goal, one second left on the clock. Their hearts are on the line. Do they trust each other enough to go for the long bomb or do they get dropped for a loss?


It's out now, so why not stop on over and Buy It Now?

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Monday Movie Musings - Update on LLRT (now with sneak peek scene!)

Just got some news about Lefty Loosey Righty Tighty, which is in post-production right now. (I posted about the film way back here, and have been following its progress over the past several months.) They're very close to finishing, and have a new sneak peek available for those who've memorized the trailer and were waiting for new material. :)

Here's the scene, featuring my favorite actor Eric Sheffer Stevens.

Right now, the team is hard at work putting the finishing touches on the film, including color correction, sound mix, and the title sequence. Their website has more details on the process, if you're so inclined.

Once the film is complete they'll be submitting it to film festivals and hopefully gaining interest from distributors, so I'll keep you posted as news crops up.

Also, and slightly off-topic, director James Yaegashi has been putting a lot of effort into fundraising for Japan. Here's a vid about the project he's working on, which includes some actors I recognized (and you might as well...)

Monday, April 25, 2011

Book BIN Tuesday - The Guardian

Margaret Mallory is one of my favorite historical authors, with relatable heroines and heroes to swoon over. So I'm thrilled she has a new book out - and not only that, it's book one of a new series! Be still, my heart.

It's called The Guardian, and here's the scoop:


Four fearless warriors return to the Highlands to claim their lands and legacies. But all their trials on the battlefield can't prepare them for their greatest challenge yet: winning the hearts of four willful Scottish beauties.


After years of fighting abroad, Ian MacDonald comes home to find his clan in peril. To save his kin, he must right the wrongs from his past . . . and claim the bride he's long resisted.

As a young lass, Sìleas depended on Ian to play her knight in shining armor. But when his rescue attempt compromised her virtue, Ian was forced to marry against his wishes. Five years later, Sìleas has grown from an awkward girl into an independent beauty who knows she deserves better than the reluctant husband who preferred war to his wife. Now this devilishly handsome Highlander is finally falling in love. He wants a second chance with Sìleas - and he won't take no for an answer.


Sounds fabulous, no? So why not head on over to the store and Buy One Now?

Monday MUSIC Musings - Buddy Guy

So last week I saw Buddy Guy in concert. And let me tell you, this 70-plus year old musician TORE. IT. UP. Seriously, this was one of the best shows I've ever seen. The audience was a little, uhm, odd (a mix of unresponsive and inappropriately responsive), but the performance was fantastic. He even played riffs "in the style of" some of the blues greats, and his imitations were spot on. I loved it.

At one point, he walked out into the auditorium and played up and down the aisles, even stopping right next to our row and jamming. It was so fun.

In fact, here's a video! Enjoy. And check out Buddy Guy's music, you'll love it!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

A Milestone For ESS Fans!

Eric Sheffer Stevens in Body Of Proof, airing this spring.

Happy hump day!

Time is flying for me these days, probably due to baseball/fastpitch eating up huge swathes of our family schedule, and I keep turning around wondering where the hell that day/week/month went when I wasn't looking.

It's also flying for my friends over on, who are about to celebrate their one year anniversary next month. They asked if I'd be willing to spread the news about a contest they're holding in honor of this milestone, so here are the deets:

On May 17th, we will be celebrating our one year anniversary at It's been a great year of meeting new friends, learning new skills, campaigning with everything we've had in us and enjoying the talents of one amazing actor. We've laughed, squeed, fallen in love and cried our hearts out as a fandom. Now Eric is moving on to new roles and developing new characters for us to love. We hope you will all stick with us as we continue to follow his career. I think we are all in for an amazing ride.

Since this is our 1st anniversary, the Crew has decided to share a few gifts with some of our friends in the Eric Sheffer Stevens community but we'd like a little something from you too. During the month of April we'd like Eric's fans to drop us a note on the website (by clicking the "Contact Us" in the top right corner) and share some of the following with us...

*Tell us about your year as an ESS fan...highs, lows anything special you'd like to share
*Tell us what you like or would change about the site/forum, anything that stood out for you
*Tell us any ideas you have or anything you'd like to see on ESS fan forum (not that we can make any promises...every member of the Crew is still working on a huge learning curve when it comes to web stuff)

We are hoping to add a page or two to the website with quotes from as many fans as possible. Then on May 17th we will randomly draw 6 names from the list of fans that participated and share one of these gifts with them. We will post the names on the forum and contact you for your addresses. (Yes we will ship to wherever!)

Thanks again for helping us make and the ESS fan forum such a great place to hang out and follow Eric and his career.

The Crew/Crew Friends

So there you go! Have a great rest of the week!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Monday Movie Musings - Pilot Filming Follow Up

Over the past week I've gotten some questions about the filming of I Hate My Teenage Daughter (thanks, LoveLure!) and I thought I'd take today's blog post to answer them, rather than burying them in the comments of an older post.

1. Do they shoot the episode in the sequence we'll see the final episode? Or do they go out of order (e.g., if they use the kitchen set twice, do they do both those scenes before moving to another set)?

The pilot was filmed in order. The first scene (and last, as well) was pre-filmed, so we watched it on the monitors in completed form. After that, the cast and crew went through the script in order, making sure each scene was done to their satisfaction before moving on. Hence, the 4 hour filming time for what's essentially a 22 minute episode.

(Side note: I wouldn't be surprised if it was trimmed a little from what we saw filmed. Even taking into consideration the multiple takes and between-scene pauses, it still seemed longer than 22 minutes. Fingers crossed none of Eric's work is lost, though!)

Also, the video feed we watched on the monitors wasn't just raw footage - the angles and camera changes were already decided ahead of time, so we saw the angle change from one character head-on, to the other head-on, to a wide shot, as the scene played out.

2. Are there multiple sets of multiple cameras (one for each set)? Or do the cameras stay fixed and just point at different sets? Or do the sets move?

The sets are fixed, and the cameras moved from set to set, as each scene changed. One set was around the corner (we watched on the monitor as they filmed behind the wall at the edge of the audience seating), and I can't remember if they moved the cameras all the way back there. But otherwise, when a scene change was announced, the cameras would roll over to the next set, a clump of people following behind (director, cinematographer, various other behind-the-scenes crewmembers). This is part of why breaks between scenes took a while; the equipment needed to be in place before they could start again.

(Side note: When the flats were moved away from the front of the set and we could finally see the whole setup, I originally thought there was a narrow backyard or outdoors set between the kitchen set and the family room set. It took me a while to realize it was actually just set dressing for both sets, so that if the camera angle caught the view outside a window, it would look like there were trees and bushes out there. LOL)

Also on the topic of IHMTD, a quick perusal of general TV discussion boards and prognosticators shows that most people expect it to be on the schedule for next year. This means pretty much nothing, of course, since the Powers That Be at FOX have the last word, but it's encouraging in an inside-baseball, fantasy league sort of way.

Also also, I'm still highly tickled when I run across links to this blog in discussions of the show and the coming TV season.

Have a great Monday!

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Home Alone Bash over on the NNN!

Since seven of the Nine Naughty Novelists are in LA this week for the RT Convention, we remaining two (Syd and me) are hosting a Home Alone party on the NNN blog. Stop by for chances to win great prizes, as well as find out just what's going on at the Con!

Monday, April 04, 2011

Book BIN Tuesday - Compass Hearts

You guys.

I am so, so excited about this one!

Maia Strong is my beta/critique partner, and I've been along for the ride since the very beginning of Compass Hearts. I love it so very much, and am thrilled it's finally available! Check it out:

As the fourth son of merchant parents, Matthew Morgan has always been superfluous. The only guidance he ever received was to behave himself and to stay out of the way. Now, at a new university half a world away from home, he must discover who he is and what he wants. The only trouble is, he's never made a decision in his life.

When Ash Thearon meets Matthew--the handsome fellow student he's been ogling all quarter--he finds him sweet, sexy, and more than a little puzzling. To solve that puzzle, he must first collect all the pieces--something more easily said than done.

The new friends quickly become lovers, but Matthew's limited life experience has taught him only how to follow another's lead. Ash wants more than that; he wants the give and take of an equal. As the lovers' holiday of Afan Valen approaches, Matthew's tendency to try too hard to please others leaves Ash wondering how to teach him independence without losing him.


Trust me, this one is a keeper. So run on over to Torquere Press and Buy It Now!

What I Learned On My Almost-Summer Vacation

I admit it. The main reason I flew down to LA last week for the pilot of I Hate My Teenage Daughter was to see Eric Sheffer Stevens perform live. (You might have picked up on that detail in previous posts. There were some subtle clues.) But I was also interested in seeing just what goes on behind the scenes during the filming of a TV show. So this was a chance to meet two goals at once! (And sharing that experience with friends was a definite bonus!)

The first thing I noticed as we entered the studio was the set construction pieces all around us, and the black curtains masking so many parts of the set and the studio. We were led to a stadium-style seating area, with approximately 200 chairs set up for the audience. There was a DJ spinning tunes at a sound system at the back of the audience section, lots of upbeat and dance-oriented tunes. A big section of the middle seating area was empty, and those seats were reserved for (we assumed) friends and family of the cast and crew.

The entire audience area was surrounded by black curtains that hung down from a framework, low enough to mask the microphones and monitors that lined the front of the seating, but short enough we could see the sets and equipment in front of us.

There were three sets visible (well, partially; the tops of the sets were visible, while the rest was blocked off by black partitions). Directly in front of us was the kitchen set, to the left was a living room set, and to the right was a coffee shop set. Later we discovered there was a high school hallway and principal's office set off to the side of the seating area. We couldn't see it, but while they were filming there, we could watch on the monitors.

There were many people walking around on the set, and more clustered around equipment. It was clear that there were a LOT of people involved in the filming of this one episode, and I remember thinking how many people would be affected by the decision of the network whether to pick up the show or not. (Apparently FOX has optioned eight half-hour comedies this season, with space for likely two or three of them. IHMTD is the only multi-camera comedy of the bunch.)

It's cold on set; I was glad I had a coat. I always assumed that they kept the studios cold so the heat of the lighting wouldn't be too much for the actors. But apparently it was too cold even for the stars, because Jaime Pressly mentioned the chill, and would wrap up in a sweatshirt between takes.

The first scene was in the kitchen set. Each scene is filmed multiple times, with adjustments to the script and performance in each take. I was impressed with the writers' ability to take note of audience reactions, rewrite/change jokes on the fly, and hand the revised scripts to the actors, who would learn their new lines and perform them - all without an unreasonable amount of downtime. For example, one of the jokes really fell flat in the first scene. The writers changed it, the actors performed it, and the audience gave the new joke one of the biggest laughs of the evening.

After the scenes are filmed two or three times, the director may decide to film just a short part of the scene over - one conversation, a few lines, even some stage business. The actors are careful to start and end in the same spot on set for each section, presumably so they can be cut together later if necessary. The camera work is also decided on prior to filming - as we watched on the monitor, we saw the cuts and changes as they would be in the finished product. The filming seemed to go quite smoothly to me, with the actors knowing their lines and stage direction very well.

There were only a few flubs and stops, one of which was when Eric said a line and immediately followed it with "no, I don't want to say it that way. Go back?" Which they did.

Between takes, or when the scenes were switching between sets, the warm-up guy would try to keep the audience interested and enthusiastic. When he wasn't busy making me look like a creeper, he arranged a dance-off, put together the dating game for another audience member, and auctioned off a pie.

It was a fascinating process, and I enjoyed the experience very much. I'd love to go back again now that I know what to expect! Only this time I'll keep my mouth shut around the warm-up guy. And maybe wear a disguise.

Sorry I don't have pictures of the set/actors/studio, but any recording device is strictly verbotene. Tune in later this week for some pics of my time in LA!