Thursday, October 26, 2006


What I'm reading:
- O'REILLY'S BRIDE by Trish Wylie
What's on the CD player:
- UNWRITTEN by Natasha Bedingfield
What I watched last night with the family:
- MAD LOVE with Peter Lorre and Colin Clive

The "What I'm reading," above, will tell you how I resolved the quandary in my last post ... I decided to stick with one book at a time. Yep, I'm a monogamous reader at heart. I'm so involved in Trish's story I've had no desire to wander elsewhere. Good to know about myself.

But it got me thinking about my other unwritten rules for reading, and I wonder how many people out there share them. Or not.

Do you:

- Read the last page to see how it ends?
Heresy!! The only way I'd peek at the ending of a book would be if I absolutely hated it and just wanted to see how the writer got him/herself out of the mess. Or if it was a book I didn't intend to read for at least 10 years. I hate spoilers!

- Skip slow-moving scenes or descriptions?
(clutching my throat and falling to the floor) Ack! Never! I might miss something! Plus, how can you say you've read the book if you haven't read the whole book?
I've heard of people skipping lovemaking scenes, but I can't imagine why, unless you didn't know you were reading That Kind of a Book. (I write "sweet," but I read "steamy" as well.)

- Dog-ear pages?
This I have been known to do, if it's a paperback and I want to refer back to the scene for Writerly Purposes. At that point, my reading book also doubles as a "text" book, and different rules apply.
Otherwise, I love all those nice promotional bookmarks.
Dog-ear a hardcover? Never.

Do you have any of your own reading "rules," or secret naughty reading habits? And do I sound totally obsessive-compulsive by now?

Wednesday, October 25, 2006


I'm contemplating infidelity.

See, the other day I took a look at my to-be-read pile. So many choices, such variety. And I thought … maybe I could read two of 'em at once?

My mother frowned on this when I was growing up, and that ethic has stuck with me: Read one book at a time. Now that I have two children, I understand what she was trying to prevent. My kids might easily start half a dozen books without finishing them if I let them.

But still. Isn't it better to stick with one novel at a time, to get the full flavor and flow? And isn't it bad manners to cheat?!

Or might it be okay to start, say, Nicholas Sparks' THE NOTEBOOK, which I keep meaning to read but somehow have never gotten to, at the same time I'm reading O'REILLY'S BRIDE by Trish Wylie, which I've already started? Different tones for different moods?

(You'll note that I'm not one of those "read-a-book-in-one-sitting" kinds of readers. For one thing, some of my "sittings" are as short as 15 minutes … I'm a mom, remember?)

So … good idea, or bad idea? Tell the truth. Do YOU read more than one book at a time?

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

American Title III voting begins!

A quick update on the American Title competition: Voting is under way now through Oct. 29th for the Best First Line. If you're interested in following the contest, here's a link for you:

American Title III

This is the first "round" of judging, so to speak. Subsequent judging will be on categories such as Best Hero and Heroine, Best Story Summary, Best Dialogue Scene and Best Romantic Scene.

Now, I won't try to influence your voting (subliminal message cathypegauROCKS) ... drop by and check it out for yourself!

Thursday, October 12, 2006


Now you can see what I'm bragging about.

My critique partner, Cathy Pegau -- after a bit of nagging on my part! -- has posted an excerpt of HAUNTED, her American Title 3 finalist book:

Excerpt from HAUNTED, by Cathy Pegau

Check it out. It's worth it!

Tuesday, October 10, 2006


I can't help it. I gotta brag. My CP, Cathy Pegau, is a finalist in the American Title 3 contest, and her interview is up on the Title Wave blog today:

I've read her book, HAUNTED, and it's wonderful. Our heroine sees one dead person in particular -- her best friend Min, who died 6 months earlier in a car crash that may NOT have been an accident. Min can't rest until she knows what happened to her, and her girlfriend Georgie has to help.

It's paranormal chick lit, very funny and heartfelt. I hope to grab it off a retail shelf in the future!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006


Today is my day for Career Week at my son's 6th grade. My husband's talk was yesterday. You'd think a disc jockey would draw a lot of interest, right? Well, most of the kids looked glassy-eyed, a far cry from the DELIGHTFUL class I spoke to 2 years ago when DS was in 4th grade. Still, I wasn't worried yet. My first experience was so positive....

Then DS and I were talking yesterday afternoon about the kids signing up for today's Career Day topics. They talks are going on in 4 different classrooms at once, so for each time slot, the kids have a choice of 4 career talks.

DS said, "I picked you. It was hard. There's a dog trainer the same time as yours."


And later: "I think four kids signed up for yours. Me and Michael and two girls."


This doesn't mean I'll be talking to only 4 kids, which would be bad enough. It means I'll be talking to the 4 kids who wanted, at least marginally, to listen to me ... and probably about 26 listless hooligans who really wanted to see a dog trainer, only the dog trainer talk was full.

I'll let you know how it goes … if I ever return….

Tuesday, October 03, 2006


I said I wasn't going to let this happen again ... but it did.

With one book, my heroine spent two months eating the same chicken sandwich.

Another time, the heroine spent several weeks giggling in the photocopy machine room across from the hero's office....

It's called bogging down in the early chapters, and it's a disease I'd really like to beat. Every time it happens I say I'm going to bang out the first 2-3 chapters of the next book FAST, without worrying so much about getting it right. It always takes me a while to capture the flavor, but it happens as the book progresses -- not by spending forever on that initial setup.

But doggone it, Yvonne and her hero have been having lunch in that break room since August. Every time I think I'm ready to move on, Yvonne sets down her chili burger, shakes back her hair and says, "Okay. Let me try that again."

The thing is, it's really hard for me to know what they'll say in the next chapter before I know what they've already said in this one....

But Chapter One is finally done. Although I still haven't gotten them out of the darn break room!