I'm all about romance and erotica writing.

Hello, It’s Me

Happy New Year and all that jazz! :)

Hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season. Apparently I took quite an extended blog break. It was unplanned, but, ya know, life happens, as “they” say. Who are they anyway? Has anyone ever met them? Hmm.

As I was on hiatus, I received a lovely, detailed review of my novel Fiona’s Fling right here in comments. I always appreciate reader feedback and here’s a big shout-out to Ann for taking the time to submit her thoughts.

I don’t know if it’s because Anna has such a nice way of spinning the sex into something that is hugely erotic, or if it’s because I have learned a lot since I last read romance novels, but, either way, I am getting fucking HOT reading this book!

Awesome! :)

I haven’t been getting critiques on my romance writing, so all comments are welcome and will be taken into consideration for future work. I have several projects simmering on the stove at the moment ~ a couple full-length novels and a few more short stories, too. 

Don’t be a stranger!

Savage Romances

Indian Country takes Cassie Edwards to task for her Indian-themed books.

I’ve never been a big fan of this romance sub-genre. While some may argue that all romance novels are  boring and predictable, I obviously disagree with that generalization; however, I do find the Indian novels to mostly fit these adjectives. There simply isn’t anywhere new to go with them. These days I mostly prefer contemporary romances, though I still can be seduced by a good Regency, such as When She Said I Do by Celeste Bradley.

Anyway, I get what the article is saying, although I’m not sure that anyone’s opinion of Indians is going to be influenced by Ms. Edwards’ novels. I don’t think I’ve ever read one, though I did read Silken Savage by Catherine Hart (yes, another “savage”) way back when and liked it, but I doubt I’d like it now (I don’t even like TFATF now, because I’m not 14). I didn’t absorb any negative views about Indians from reading Ms. Hart’s novel, but then again I never believed that romance novels were anything but fantasy, including the parts about sex and relationships.

What was most interesting about the Indian Country’s article was the plagiarism angle — the article links both to a Daily Beast piece by Paul Tolme on ferrets, which I loved (poor ferrets!), and also a fab piece on one of my fave sites Smart Bitches Trashy Books detailing text similarities in books by Ms. Edwards to other sources. It’s all in a gloriously detailed PDF even Teacake can respect.

I avoid all plagiarism in my books by focusing on relationships rather than pesky content. Does anyone pick up a book with sexy half-naked people on it hoping to find info about FERRETS?

On Formatting

Anna did an oopsy!

When I released my first self-published book (under another name), everything was formatted perfectly — poems, flash fiction, and short stories. But last night when I brought my Kindle to a meeting so a friend could read Gracie’s Gamble, I realized that instead of formatting my story properly in block text with blank lines between paragraphs, as one is supposed to do for this modern age, for some inexplicable reason I had reverted to indenting with tabs. Yikes!

Obviously it wasn’t the worst thing and the romance was perfectly readable, but it did look a little bit odd on the Kindle with lines indended and no white space between paras. Knowing me and my OCD tendencies, I am sure I will fix it and resubmit.

My full-length novel, Fiona’s Fling, is similarly incorrectly formatted, though easy to read in any case. I will be fixing it at some point.

Right now my highest priority is to get new stories up on my bookshelf — Rachel’s Review and The Birthday Present (short stories) are almost finished and Sweet Nothings (a novel) needs a bit of editing. I have even more coming after that and also a surprise for everyone in October — scary erotica just in time for Halloween!

OK OK, it’s more fun than scary, but even so. It’s a bit different and I hope people will enjoy. It will be formatted properly. :)

Fabulous Review Site

Smart Bitches, Trashy Books <— great name!

I love this romance novel review site. Truth be told, I haven’t  been reading that many novels lately because I’ve been focusing on my writing (though I will finish When She Said I Do by Celeste Bradley this weekend — and so far it’s fabulous), but I still check SBTB every so often for miscellaneous tips. The reviews themselves are damn fine writing and generally funny as hell. Read this one on Karen Robards’ The Last Kiss Goodbye. 

Hope all my U.S. friends are having a relaxing and enjoyable Labor Day Weekend!

 

 

Self-Publishing Perspective

I stumbled onto a very informative interview with writer Tasha Harrison.

If you’re at all curious about self-publishing, especially Amazon KDP, I highly recommend that you read it. Tasha’s experience resonates with mine, except for her dogged determination in sending manuscripts to agents and her current success. :)

I’ve also found tweeting to be spectacularly unhelpful in getting people interested in my writing, though it certainly is fun and diverting, and heaven knows I need more shiny things to distract me from actually working on my pr0n.

Apparently setting up a Facebook author page is a Good Thing to do, so maybe I will try that. After all it’s been a couple weeks since I uploaded my first short romance/erotica story and I still do not have enough in my account for an exotic vacation, pair of Manolos, or grande chai latte.

I’m in control – well, more than I was, at any rate. My books are selling and people are contacting me to say how much they’ve enjoyed reading them. I’ve waited a long time to have that satisfaction! I have instant access to my sales figures, can change my cover image, price and content whenever I want and work to my own deadlines. I’m not worrying too much about what genre I fall under, either. Overall, self-publishing has been liberating. — Tasha Harrison

Fiona’s Fling

Happy last week of August!

To celebrate, I have a deliciously sexy novel for sale — Fiona’s Fling.

Coincidentally, my novel is set in August, at a fictional company called Sugarplum Financial Services. Fiona Murphy, the sexy redhaired heroine, wishes that the hot stranger she spent a wild night with could be a local man interested in having a relationship with her — and then she’s shocked to discover that not only is Michael Delmonte local, but he’s also her new boss. Yikes! Will Fiona be able to finesse the tricky twists and turns of corporate etiquette while navigating Mike’s hot body?

Well, buy the book to find out. :)

Elmore Leonard RIP

Good writing is good writing, whatever the genre.

I enjoyed reading Elmore Leonard. You’ve probably seen his 10 writing rules posted the last few days. I’ve been following some of them all along, not even realizing they were his.

1. Never open a book with weather.

Yep, I knew this.

2. Avoid prologues.

Mysteries frequently have them and they can be fun as teasers. But they should be short, I think.

3. Never use a verb other than “said” to carry dialogue.

In general, but romances need some whispers, murmurs, etc.

4. Never use an adverb to modify the verb “said” … he admonished gravely.

Agreed.

5. Keep your exclamation points under control. You are allowed no more than two or three per 100,000 words of prose.

No. We need more in a romance!

6. Never use the words “suddenly” or “all hell broke loose.”

Agreed.

7.  Use regional dialect, patois, sparingly.

Agreed. It becomes tiresome for the reader.

8. Avoid detailed descriptions of characters.

I have to depart here — in romance writing we must describe the protagonists very clearly.

9.  Don’t go into great detail describing places and things.

Just enough to ground the reader in the setting. More than that gets boring.

10. Try to leave out the part that readers tend to skip.

That would be all the historical and landscape gobbledy. And any political droning on.  Because we want to read about the relationships between the characters! That’s why we pick up a romance novel and not a travel guide to Scotland.

Do you have any writing rules for yourself?

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