Sunday, August 28, 2005

A great romance read!


I have to put a plug in for my dear friend and critique partner, Marin Thomas. I just finished reading her August Harlequin American release, HOMEWARD BOUND, and it's delicious!!

I just love Marin's writing. She has a wonderful talent for writing about small towns and small town folk. Her characters are always vivid and real, and her stories always leave me with a warm fuzzy feeling in my heart. You can visit Marin's website at www.marinthomas.com for more info on her books!

Friday, August 26, 2005

What I'm Watching...

As I said, sometimes when I get tired of reading on my exercise bike every night I watch movies instead. Most recently in my DVD player while I ride: Karate Kid, Karate Kid 2, Gattaca, Moulin Rouge, Bourne Identity, Bourne Supremacy, Day After Tomorrow, The Matrix, Sin City, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer season 6 episodes.

All of the above are re-watches for me with the exception of Sin City, which I didn't like, btw. Liked the film noir feel to it, liked many of the actors, but it was just too creepy-gory for me. Which is odd because gore normally doesn't bother me. But the combo of the noir, the black and white, and the weird gore turned me off.

In my To Be Watched pile sitting next to my bike-riding DVD player: Karate Kids 3 & 4 (even though they were my least fave of the series...but if I start a series I have to watch them all!), Alexander (haven't seen it before), the newer Triple X movie (haven't seen this one yet either, although without Vin Diesel it's going to be hard for it to measure up), The Saint (LOVE Val Kilmer in this flick!), and Ocean's 12 (another one I haven't seen yet).

Monday, August 22, 2005

What I'm reading...

I usually spend between 60 and 90 minutes, five or six times a week, on my exercise bike. At times it's a bitch. So I read and it makes my exercise time a thousand times more bearable. If I get tired of reading I sometimes watch movies while I ride. But mostly I read.

Most recent fare: Catherine Asaro's Skolian series. If you like Sci-Fi, you have to try Asaro. Richly detailed sci-fi world, excellent characterization, and if you happen to be a science geek like my hubby, Asaro's a physicist in real life, so there's plenty of science for those who want it without being too much for those of us whose brains tend to shut down when things get too technical. I've read the books in this order: Primary Inversion, The Last Hawk, Catch the Lightning, The Radiant Seas, Ascendant Sun, and I'm currently partway through Spherical Harmonic. The Last Hawk is my fave of the series so far. Kelric is an amazing character. I have a real fondness for tortured heroes and he is the ultimate tortured hero. Plus, I found the game/philosophy of Quis completely fascinating. Anyway, I set aside Spherical Harmonic in mid-July, even though I hadn't quite finished it, so I could reread...

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. Had to do a reread so I'd be ready for HBP when it came out. When Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince arrived in my hot little hands, I read it in one sitting the first day. Took me about nine hours. Awesome book. Sad but awesome. I was a wreck for several days afterward. Until I had an epiphany. But since I don't want to spoil it for those of you who might not have read HBP, I'll keep my mouth shut. :) Then, under duress (because I wanted to read it again immediately), I passed it on to my older son who read it in a couple of days, then to hubby who read it in a few days. While I waited impatiently for them to finish and give it back, I reread Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire to fulfill my "I must have more Harry RIGHT NOW!!" craving. When I got HBP back a week later, I read it again. Not gobbling on round two...savoring.

When that was done, I reread Eragon by Christopher Paolini because the sequel's out this month and I wanted to refresh my memory on book one before I start book two. Then I decided to reread Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone because it had been eons since I read it. Yes, you read that correctly, HP and the Philosopher's Stone not the Sorcerer's Stone. I decided I wanted to get Harry in his more natural state as Jo Rowling really writes, so I went to Amazon UK and ordered the Bloomsbury version of all six books. That way I can savor the UK language and spellings. So I read Philosopher's Stone.

Currently I'm reading an Arthurian-based story called Firebrand by an Amber Quill author, Debra Kemp. I love Arthurian tales and Kemp's done a fab job of coming up with something fresh. It's excellent reading so far! As soon as I'm finished with that I'll start Eldest, which is the Paolini sequel to Eragon. Then I'll probably get back to the rest of my Bloomsbury Harry Potters. :) Yes, yes, it's a sickness. I think I've made it very clear that I am a hopeless Harry fan. Hey, I have to have something Harry related to focus on while I wait for the Goblet of Fire movie to come out in November! Argh!! Too long from now. Much too long!! But, alas, the folks at Warner Brothers will make me wait. So until then, I'll read...

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Funny or feeble? When blogs get a little too personal...

Seems like everyone's blogging now--it's the thing to do. That's cool. I started my blog, even though it's hardly a raging river of frequentness, because it seemed the thing to do. And it's fun to cruise around the web and read the blogs of people I know, and some I don't know. You never can tell what interesting tidbits you might pick up, what gossip or rantings and ragings you might read, or where you might find a good laugh. But I have to admit that I've read a few blogs lately that have been a total turn off. I mean, reading about someone's bodily functions in great detail, or explicit descriptions of their intimate hygiene habits just doesn't do it for me. I get enough of my kids laughing hysterically over scatological jokes. I really don't need the adult versions of that in my life.

I didn't find these blogs on sex sites or teenagers-with-an-attitude sites. Nope. These appeared to be average adults with families, jobs, lives. So what's with the gross-out posts? Do they think their "I'm going to use every crude word I can think of for shock value, and fuck anyone who doesn't like it" attitude is cool? Or do they post it because they honestly believe people reading their blogs will somehow find this stuff fascinating or otherwise entertaining?

Hey, I'm no prude. I write erotic romance for crying out loud. I've been around a block or two, so there's very little that shocks me. And I sure as hell don't believe in censorship. So if someone wants to flaunt their icky personal details, well it's certainly their right and prerogative to do it. And to be completely honest, I've read some damned funny things about bodily functions. The blogs I'm referring to, however, didn't come across as being even remotely funny. They read more like badly written medical diaries. Or, in one case, a crass whine-a-thon. I don't know, maybe the posters thought they were funny, but...uh...sorry, folks.

It takes a certain talent to pull off funny when it comes to issues like these. Some people can do it, others can't. Those who can't should quit trying to pretend they can before they completely humiliate themselves. Oops, that's right, too late. Some of them already have. Well, hey, as I said, to each his own. If you want a gazillion people on the internet to visualize you in vivid, gory detail taking care of your business, that's certainly your right. Just as it's my right to say, I hope you realize the vivid picture you've given your readers of yourself doing things WE DID NOT EVER, EVER NEED TO KNOW ABOUT will forever skew our opinions of you. In a word...BLEAAAGH!!!

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Buffy & Angel...oh, my!

When I read back I realized I had some catching up to do on my status in the Buffy/Angel universe. I finished watching all seven seasons of Buffy, finally got the fifth season of Angel and watched it, then about two months ago, I rewatched all seven seasons of Buffy again. Do you have any idea how many hours of TV that is?! Yikes!!! And I was just as obsessed the second time around as I was the first. I also firmly fell in love with Spike the second time around. Not that I didn't like him the first time I watched the series because I did. But during round two I officially went off the deep end for him. Frankly, I think Buffy was a fool not to fall in love with him, but I guess she had that whole Angel history to deal with. :)

My final decision on which series I like best? Hands down, Buffy. I was surprised by that because Angel re-runs were what hooked me on the universe first, but watching Buffy, Willow, and Xander cope with high school then the painful adjustment to adulthood was wonderfully compelling. I thought they (and the supporting characters) were all amazing and I found myself so caught up in their lives that they became real people to me.

Fave episodes: Once More With Feeling was awesome and fresh! The Body was gut-wrenching and brilliant; I sobbed my eyes out during the entire thing. Hush was also very good. The Buffy-Bot episodes were a hoot! And the evil Willow episodes were excellent. Scary, but excellent. The Riley/Adam season overall was probably my least favorite, but unlike some fans who really just didn't like Riley as a character, I thought he served his purpose and it was a nice break for Buffy to have a genuinely sweet guy for a while. I felt really sorry for him by the time he left town, though.My fave villain was the Preacher. Totally creepy and evil. Ugh! I rather enjoyed the three geeks as villains, until Warren went nasty psycho. Can't say I blame bad Willow for what she did to him. I found Glory to be somewhat obnoxious, even though the end of that season was definitely a tear jerker.

Gee, now aren't you glad I shared all that with you? LOL!

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Long time no write

And I mean that in two ways...long time since I've written in my blog (told you all I was bad at journaling!) and a long time since I've written new stories. But I'm happy to say that after taking a few months off to get some R&R, fill the creative well, and spend some time with my family, I'm happy to be back to work! I just updated my website, which was fun. Some new graphics and a slightly revamped and, I think, fresher look. Hope you all like it! I also added some new reviews I recently received on my contemporary romance MASKS. I was interviewed by Simone Grant at The Romance Studio in May, so the link to that interview is now posted, and I added some new useless tidbits about myself to the "Inside Scoop" page. I get quite a bit of reader mail about those useless tidbits, so I figured it was time to list a few more. Not sure if you'd call them riveting reading, but as I said, some readers seem to really like them. LOL!

Enjoy!