Monday, March 26, 2012

A decent cuss

Okay, I need help here. I'm pretty bad at cussing. That's not to say I do it a lot (I don't), it's just that when I do it's not particularly original and I tend to simply repeat it with gradually increasing vehemence/shock/horror etc. You get the idea *grin*. I thought I might ask you guys (cause you're such a dodgy bunch ;p) and see if anyone has any particularly different and/or amusing cussing lines. In fact, I'm thinking this'll make a fun competition!
The prize?
Your choice of e-book from my slide show above. I'll gift the winner that book in whatever e-format you require.
What you need for a chance to win!
An original, ideally amusing, cuss that you don't mind being potentially poached. If you have one you love that's all yours that you DON'T want to see elsewhere then don't enter it in this. The ideal cuss would be relatively succinct and as nonsensical as you like. Here are a couple of ideas to get you going.
'Holy suspender belt batman!'
'Son of a biscuit!'
'Pickle farts!'
But honestly, the more ridiculous and easy to say, the better. Even if it's getting a 'normal' cuss line very, very wrong (as sometimes happens when you think you overhear something *grin*).
So each cuss is a chance to win and if you tweet/facebook/blog about this silly little comp, include me in it so I can see and I'll give you another chance to win. Make sure to peruse the books above and see which you'd like!
Oh, and do you have an ebook you'd like added to my slideshow? Get in touch, either via the comments or my contact form J
Take care all!
 The Arrival, available for free right here on this blog!
Awakening on Amazon or UK Amazon or in Epub format right here on my blog (the bright yellow buttons on left!)

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

I've been bitten…

By that damn procrastination bug! I've been infected with a current inability to spend much more than twenty minutes of intense focus on Feel the Burn before I get the inexplicable urge to flee… or rather surf *hee* or read, or cuddle furry critters, bother my male creature, play with my jewelry box (yup - still love to play 'what's in my treasure chest' as well as dress-ups *lol*). Pretty much anything other than write. Which rather equals major fail *sigh* But, as long as I can get a couple of those intense twenty minute periods in a day (I work full time remember, no luxury of all day writing here!) then I'm doing well. I've been getting the odd email from readers who've enjoyed The Arrival and Awakening and some amusing/curious questions with those emails so I thought I'd openly respond to some of the common questions I get.

When is Feel the Burn available? - This always makes me chuckle, cause if a reader has read Awakening then I know they've seen the page that clearly states - Feel the Burn, available Dec 2012. I suspect however they hope to hurry me along with the process. Sorry to disappoint, but when combined with a normal full time job (a girl's gotta eat! And feed those afore mentioned critters/male creature *grin*) writing a full length novel is a full-on task. Especially this particular one because it's the accumulation of the first two books and has A LOT to live up to. And I intend to make damn sure it does!

Where do you get your ideas? - From everywhere. Old stories I remember reading as a kid, TV shows, nature, documentaries, real life adventures. I'm a habitual daydreamer and writing is now my outlet for all those out-there ideas.

Are all of your characters based on people you know? - Pretty much. Even if they aren't originally based on anyone, as they develop in my mind I associate certain traits from different people with them. It helps me to figure out what the characters would do when confronted with different situations. It also makes the daydream process more 'real' in my head and thus easier to write. I'm a big people watcher.

Where do you write/where's your favorite place to write? - I have a few favorite spots. I love writing in a café at lunchtimes that's at the bottom of the building I work in. The people who work there are fabulous and know me far too well now *lol* And I love the manager's gorgeous French accent *swoon* The café is great for people watching and for the 'busy' scenes. I also love writing at my hut in the bush. It's great for when I need to write the really, awful sad scenes and don't want to be caught out when bawling my eyes out ;p And when I write the… intimate scenes… I like to be at home knowing Glenn is focused on something so he doesn't read over my shoulder cause that always equals major red face for both of us *lol*

Are you bringing the books out in paperback? - Yes. As soon as my paypal account reaches enough for me to pay someone to format them, because I don't have the time this year to stress over that! I'm hoping to use the person who formats J.A. Konrath's books.

OMG - your book is doing SO well, are you rich yet? - *Cackle* No, sadly not. While Awakening is doing well in the rankings, to be making squillions you ideally want to be in the top 100 overall, and I'm a little way from that (yet - but I'll get there!). Also, with the way you get paid from Amazon and due to being paid by international cheque, it means that, for example my December sales, won't reach my bank account until next month. There is nothing quick about the whole writing business *grin*. I live by the mantra 'write because you love the story, not the money'.

The above question is often followed by, 'When will you become a fulltime writer?' - I'm a cautious person when it comes to playing with money when it could affect my life in a serious way. So even if I was earning a monthly wage from my books, I wouldn't consider quitting my job and becoming a full time writer until all our bills were paid and there was a substantial nest egg built up. As well as an amount to cover my wages for the next couple of years. I know there are plenty of people who'll say, 'Oh don't worry, just go for it!' But for me I couldn't handle knowing that I HAD to make X amount a month. I'm pretty sure it would zap all my creative juices dry - and desperation is never nice *shudder*

Okay, there's a bit of insight into me. If you've been curious too feel free to pop any questions in the comments below. I still have probably another couple of posts to do with other Q's & A's if you found this interesting : )
Take care all!
 The Arrival, available for free right here on this blog!
Awakening on Amazon or UK Amazon or in Epub format right here on my blog (the bright yellow buttons on left!)

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Extremes - they make you think

As mentioned in my last post I was in Australia for a glorious and hot ten nights, eleven days. It was fabulous and the utter opposite of New Zealand. Right now I look out from my desk over the slate blue harbor and murky grey sky as the building sways gently in the 120km speed winds (temp, 12ºc). Oh yes, it's great to be home.
Arriving in Australia and stepping out the terminals doors to a hot breeze was an absolute first for us. The breeze in Wellington is always cooling. We stood there, Glenn and I, with our mass loads of luggage just gaping at the difference. Now I'm wishing I could have bottled it *grin* I'm back to wearing my thin red leather gloves to keep my icy fingers warm and pondering which of the girls I'll write sticking her frozen fingers up the back of her nice warm guy's shirt *hee* An absolute favorite trick of mine on my own long-suffering male *grin*. He refers to me as a succubus in winter cause he can't get warm once I've had my icy mitts up his shirt *mwahahaha*.
The extreme opposites in both weather and land though, make for some fantastic ideas with my writing. Going for a walk in the Lamington national park (mmmm, lamingtons *drool*) was fascinating as for the first time ever in both our lives, we were aware of a real sense of apprehension due to the fact that there are creatures in the Aussie bush that can do you some serious damage.
It's such a foreign concept to us! New Zealand has no natural or introduced predators that are of any danger to a human. Sure, there's always the chance of getting gored by a pig - but really the chances of that are very slim. It possibly explains to some of the readers out there as to why the girls in the BirthRight trilogy can seem a little casual about going for a stroll in the woods. Here in NZ it's perfectly safe. The most dangerous thing in NZ is other humans and our sudden weather changes. I think I'm going to have to watch a stack load of documentaries as I work on book three, to keep all these extremes of nature in my mind. Writing - it really does make you think!
Take care all!
 The Arrival, available for free right here on this blog!
Awakening on Amazon or UK Amazon or in Epub format right here on my blog (the bright yellow buttons on left!) 

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

I'm back!

We arrived back in New Zealand in the early hours of Monday morning after a fabulous ten nights in Brisbane. And now I'm freezing ;p After been a bit worried as to whether or not we would handle the heat (yeah, laugh it up all those natives in Aussie, I know it's Autumn by your standards) we were pleasantly surprised. So after our first 3hr flight with minimal turbulence (to Glenn's disappointment) we dragged our heavy ass bags to the outer door. Stepping out into a hot breeze was an absolute first for us! I know people have described it to me as 'like having a hair dryer in the face' but coming from NZ Wellington and our forever cool breeze, it was a shock. We stood there for five minutes, marveling at it. Then promptly returned to the air-conditioned airport to a toilet and changed into something lighter *lol*
Driving in Australia had been a concern. As is driving anywhere that you don't know, but oh wow, were the roads awesome! We had to get to Ipswich to Pixie's for the first night and that was a bit of an adventure. The motorway's were super easy - until all the lights went out that is… The new section of motorway that we did actually need to take was fully out of lights and that makes it damn hard to check the map. It also makes you feel like you're driving out into the middle of absolutely no where… So Glenn bailed on my directions and took the next exit before we ended up in the middle of Aussie making a call to Pixie along the lines of 'Help!' Thankfully that small dip in the drive only took a brief stop at a petrol station to fix it (yes, when the male takes the early turn off then he gets to ask for directions ;p). Five minutes later and we were off toward Pixie's, waving at a family who appeared to have gathered for the momentous event (until they realized that we weren't who they meant to wave at *lol*) and there was Pixie, bemused expression and all as we parked our sick little rental car on her almost vertical drive.
Ahh the rental car. One of those eency weency 3 door things that coughed and wheezed its way into third and then tentatively fourth gear on the motorway with both of us leaning forward chanting 'go little car, go!'
Catching up with Pixie and Chris, in the flesh instead of via Skype was great fun. We stayed up way late considering our already big adventure, laughing, drinking and eating a delicious roast dinner courtesy of Pixie and a yummy cake baked by Chris. The next morning we were up early and given the grand tour of Ipswich with Pixie - including checking out the Uni library complete with a creek running through it *grin* Very cool idea! Then I got to drive us to Broadbeach, where we'd booked the apartment for a week.
This long week in Aussie has taught us one valuable lesson. I suck as the navigator but ace as the driver and Glenn, vice versa.
We arrived at Broadbeach by lunchtime, hot, hungry and grouchy. It didn't improve when we dragged those massive bags to the tiny 1 bedroom apartment and discovered no air-con…
Yeah, that wasn't going to work!
After a low-blood sugar spat (you know, when you growl and snap at each other with excessive gesturing then one of you storms off while the other spends the next hour feeling guilty for being a brat ;p) Glenn returned super excited and dragged me and our copious amounts of luggage to a new apartment. And with fumbling hands (hunger & excitement) he flung open the door to heaven.
Or rather a two bedroom, totally done up with gorgeous leather couches, huge flat screen TV's, BIG kitchen and two bathrooms and of course AIR-CON, super apartment. *swoon*
Suddenly we were loving the resort *grin* and after a quick unpack and scramble for swimwear, we were neck deep in the enormous pool, complete with two spas. Yup, we'd died and gone to heaven (and back at home, there had been a massive storm with trees down and horrible under 10°c temps). The next ten days were a full on tourist bash of the Gold Coast. Dream World, Movie World, the Zoo, the National Park, Surfers Paradise and of course shopping! Swimming at least twice a day - it was more swimming in those ten days than I've done all of the summer here in NZ. We ate far too much rich food (I put on nearly 2kgs, Glenn nearly 1… I hate how that works!) We also had to return our sad little car and get another after a major hiccup with it. As we were driving to Dracula's (best night out ever!), I commented on how economical the car was with petrol. Then all of two seconds later I glance down and notice the petrol light blinking! When just the moment before it was on three quarters full. It was a tense drive to Coolangata to switch the car over the next day. The next little car we had was fantastic and made up for it fully as we tackled three theme parks, the national park and Surfers in the next 9 days.
*whew* Okay, I'm falling asleep as I type this (still recovering ;p) and I'm going bush with Dad tomorrow so I better wrap it up. In short, great to be back, had some awesome planning sessions of creatures with Glenn (he's fantastic for brain storming with, even though he hasn't read either book and constantly declares I should kill everyone off ;p) so back in to writing! Also, I'm rather chuffed to report that the sales of Awakening in Feb were just shy of 1000 as opposed to 550 in Jan and they look to be in track to beating those sales this month (and this is just for US Amazon) so it's awesome to know there are lots of happy (and now impatient ;p) readers out there.
Take care all!
 The Arrival, available for free right here on this blog!
Awakening on Amazon or UK Amazon or in Epub format right here on my blog (the bright yellow buttons on left!)