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Death by Chocolate Got Bumped

Book one in my Killer Confection Saga, Death by Chocolate, has been bumped. When I signed the contract with kNight Romance back in February, the release date was August 2012. Then, I heard rumors about it being moved up at bit, but nothing concrete. Finally, my writers guild mentioned a book fair in October and I started thinking. Hmm, are there more book fairs in Ohio? Where are they? When are they? Turns out we have two pretty big ones in May. So I shot an email to 007 (my agent because she loves mystery so I think fitting) and she asked kNight if I might have Death By Chocolate in May. If so I can try to get a spot at a book fair. Well, ya know how they say, it never hurts to ask? Turns out the tentative print release is April 15th now! That’s nice. I’m in love with the idea of seeing it four months sooner. But, that’s still so far away. I just pushed it out of my mind.

Then at around midnight – yeah, midnight because we never sleep – 007 emails and says she heard the editor for Death by Chocolate would be in touch this month and edits would begin soon. kNight wants to release the ebook version first and is looking at December as a possible release date. Like, THIS December. So, I could expect to
hear from the editor in the next few weeks. Like, 30 minutes later I heard from her – yeah, 12:30 psh, publishing doesn’t sleep. And that’s that. She planned to read through it over the holiday weekend (I wrote this post on the 3rd *planning ahead* #winning). So, by the time this airs, I should be in the midst of edits on my first full length novel.

For fun I’m putting the blurb/cover copy below and a link to my page at kNight. But mostly this post is to say, publishing is both as slow as molasses and as unpredictable as Charlie Sheen. One minute you’re playing the waiting game and the next you’re doing something you didn’t see coming for months.  So, if you’re a writer, where ever you are in your career, roll with it. Change is always afoot.

Death by Chocolate: Book 1 on the Killer Confections Saga

Ruby Russell has reached her limit.  When she discovers her hipster husband has a dirty little secret, she whips him up a Viagra-infused-chocolate mousse punishment, but in the morning, her husband’s a stiff.  Armed with a lifetime of crime show reruns and Arsenic and Old Lace on DVD, Ruby and her best friend Charlotte try to lay low until after Ruby’s son’s wedding, but a nosey therapist, meddling minister and local news reporter are making it very difficult to get away with murder.

Despite the growing chaos, bristling conflicts, and a mounting body count, these delightfully unstable girlfriends are determined to get away with murder come what may.


Hubsy & I Are Fighting

Fine. We don’t really fight as much as have a standoff. But, I think you all will side with me, so this is why I’m telling you. Early in the summer Hubsy started talking about remodeling the basement. One of the rooms will become an office. We had an office once but then Little Miss came along and now she has a princess bedroom instead. I write on the couch with my laptop and its killing my posture LOL. So, last week we were laying out schematics for the home theatre room he wants, the playroom the kids need, my new and improved laundry room, deciding if we should add a half bath or maybe the theatre needs a coffee bar *Totally DOES* and then we got to the office.

I pointed to opposite corners and said “I think my desk should go there so I can see the kids playing while I’m in there writing. You should probably put your desk in that corner so people won’t see the mess when they walk past.

He disagreed.

As it turns out, he planned to stick his desk right in the CENTER of the flippin room and “put two comfortable chairs in front of it so when people come in to talk or see me they can sit.” Ummm WTH? This isn’t a home business. It’s an OFFICE, like a place my laptop is safe from toddlers and juice pouches. I mean…What about me?

He didn’t think I needed an office. He suggested I use his desk while he’s at work. He said these things with a straight face. I almost ripped it off. I snapped “Uh, I need a desk. I’m a writer.” He smiled. “I am a writer.” He nodded. “I am! I need somewhere to write and print and a bookshelf for my books.”

He said, “In the theatre room, I was thinking…”

“Hey! Don’t walk away. You can’t change the subject. You can’t put your desk in the center of this room, and say I can sit there while you’re at work!” He rubbed my shoulders and steered me to the future home theatre.

Now, we’re fighting. Silent, cold war style. Just wait till one of us pushes the Launch button and then there’s gonna be trouble. Like, for example, if I see him trying to put a desk in the center of that room. Which is why I plan to get my desk in there the minute he leaves for work the day after the room is finished. I think I’ll order one made of marble so he can’t move it after I ask the deliverers to tow motor it into the corner where I want it.

Ahhhh, feels good to vent. My posture demands it.

Also, don’t tell him I told you he’s an office hogger. He’ll deny it.

Do You Get “The Look”

Okay I’m a sweetie pie but sometimes, when I get “the look,” I swear some of my hair stands up and my fists clench at my sides and my smile looks more maniacal than genuine. Now, what do I mean, “the look?” Well,  “The look” comes when I run into THIS situation:

Looker: Hi Julie. How are you?

Me: I’m wonderful, thank you.

Looker: “So, whatcha up to now? Kids are in school. You must be enjoying your new leisure.”

This is where my face begins to twitch because HELLO I do have a three year old and a house and meals and errands and…*breathe* *focus*

Me: Yes, oh the boys are adjusting well.

*See, me dodging what they want to know*

Looker: So what do you do now that you’re not homeschooling?

Me: I write. (Ironically this is how I used to feel about telling people I homeschooled. People are kinda judgey)

Looker: *Silence. blinks. crickets chirp.*


Looker: What do you mean? What do you write? You journal?

Me: No. I write novels, novellas, short stories….

I trail off there as their eyes glaze over

Looker: *feigns interest* Oh. How nice. What did you write? I’d love to read it.

Me: *liar. you don’t even know what it is yet. What if I write the biographies of men who paint lines on the highway?*  “Well, I have a few things coming in 2012. I’ve written three short romance for a new line and am writing the sequel to a saga right now. Book one will be out around New Years….”

THIS is where the looks comes. A crooked smile turns to a smirk. Eyes crinkle at the sides. Their general expression screams, “Aw honey. You poor deluded thing. Sure sure, I’m flying to the moon NEXT year. Snicker*

Awkward silence follows.

*Sigh* I get this from friends, family, strangers, moms I meet at school or sports, etc.

Here’s the thing. They did it when I had nothing coming around the corner too. Having things coming doesn’t matter. I suspect those people will still give me the look after my stuff comes out. Unless they’ve personally read or heard about my book, those people will *look*. They’re lookers. Its what they do.

Tell me, Do you ever get the look?

September 11th

I never know what to write today. Nothing I say compares to what has already been said more eloquently, more passionately, or both. Today, my heart aches for the families who grieve. My heart swells with pride for the heroes who saved many, risked themselves, and marched ahead doing what was right for the rest, never thinking of themselves. Even as I type this, lines from other blogs, books, and interviews run through my mind. I know I’m inadequate in this endeavor. So, today I’ll just say God bless this country and leave it at that. I’m thankful for those who were spared, the lives He saved, and the infinite unseen tragedies which He prevented.

Today my family will pray extra for what this day means. My little girl and I will take brownies and soup to the local firemen down the road. When I homeschooled, this was part of the routine. It’s an act my children have never been without. They were each born into a post-9/11 world. I know it’s a small gesture, but I hope my children will understand today is different from the rest.

Today, the world changed.

I Failed My Writing Exercise

A month ago at the local writers guild meeting, the speaker discussed ways to get your muse flowing. We started with a writing experiment. She asked us to begin writing whatever came to mind for ten minutes. She said “Go.” I sat blinking at her.

Ten minutes later, I’d returned a few tweets, used the potty and refilled my coffee. My page looked like it did when she said “Go.” Something about writing under pressure made my brain put it’s grey matter hands on hips and move it’s neck around in circles. “Oh, no I won’t!” I guess my brain is stubborn. I write everyday. I blog, tweet, facebook, write for the guild newsletter. I’m a writing fool (no comments please). But being told “Go,” did bad things to my attitude. It’s bothered me ever since.

I became especially irritated when everyone raised their hands to read their work. Were they kidding? Nope. They penned short stories, poems, and one lady wrote lyrics to a song. A song. Right. *blinks eyes over blank face* I failed.

I did learn an interesting fact though. I’m not a “writing exercise” kind of writer. I like to plot out what my point is, who will run the show and how I can mess with them, then I write. To write on the fly like that they best I could hope for is a grocery list, or a honey-do list or maybe the alphabet.

Do you guys use writing exercises? What are they? Maybe I need one, but NOT that one.

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