Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Sneak Peek...Field of Screams

“So, first thing Monday morning, I’m initiating the first of several new initiatives. As of Monday, the ‘Fresh Air for Cannes’ law goes into effect. Simply said, it will no longer be legal to break wind in the town’s limits. Shall we eat?”
The mayor sat down and flicked his napkin over his lap.
“Did he say what I think he said?” Bird asked.
“Breaking wind means farts, right?” Fred asked.
“Legend. Epic legend,” said Remington.
There was a lull. No one said a word, and I imagined they were all concentrating on not farting. I jumped when Grandma cleared her throat.
“I think we could start, Mayor, by going around the table and whoever wants to, can say what they are thankful for,” she said. “I’ll start, I’m thankful that there’s love in the world, that people find their soulmates and have a lifetime of love.”
Holden squeezed my hand, and I swallowed.
The declarations of gratitude went around the table until it got to Remington. “I’m thankful for it all,” he said and smiled. I held my breath, but he was true to his word. He didn’t look my way and never let on that he and I had gone for a tumble in his sheets every day for the past two weeks.
Plus one.
Ruth’s niece, Julie was just about to say what she was grateful for – – probably for having all of her fingers and toes, despite her accident with a food processor last week– – when there was a loud stomping down the stairs. I closed my eyes, knowing full well who was making the noise and dreading what came next.
I wished for a time machine or a teleportation device, or just to be invisible or to not exist. But none of my wishes came true. No matter how hard I wished, my mother was there, her hair a rat’s nest on her head, her lipstick smeared past her lips and over her cheek, and her clothes were wrinkled, like she had slept in them, and of course she had. She was in that sweet spot before she had finished sleeping off her drunk, right before her hangover started and she had to contend with being sober. She was meanest during her sweet spots.
“What the hell?” she screeched. “You started without me? I live here, you know. What am I thankful for? It sure isn’t my daughter or my mother-in-law.”

I closed my eyes and prayed that someone would fart.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Proud Mama

My youngest son's school had a competition for best original plays. They narrowed it down to four plays and produced them. Then, professionals in the business came to judge, and....(insert drumroll here)...my son won best actor out of all of them! Yay! He played a mentally handicapped man in the Vietnam War.

My youngest son (on right) playing a Lenny-esqe character:

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Sleeping Beauty Did It This Way

I was walking my dog and met these fabulous ladies doing fabulous spinning. No, not on stationary bikes...with spinning wheels! They invited me to join them. I've always wanted to own a gigantic loom and weave rugs. But I have no artistic talent. Anyway, I didn't try out the spinning, because it didn't work out well for Sleeping Beauty (and I base all my decisions on Disney movies), but it was so cool!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

A Writer's Best Friend

I think Dolly, our family dog, has become my dog. She follows me everywhere. I feel sort of guilty about it.

Here she is under my desk.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

I thought I was going to see La Traviata, But Then a Man Came Out In His Underpants.

My youngest son loves wrestling. I don't know why. He bought two tickets (with his own money) to see "Monday Night Raw" in Los Angeles and insisted that I go with him. I don't know why. You would think he would want to go with someone who liked wrestling. I know what you're thinking...mostly naked men with bulging muscles and 2% body fat, rolling around with each other can't be all that bad. Well...I can say that it was a joy to see my son so happy. We arrived four hours early to stand behind the arena to see the wrestlers come in.

Here's one. His name is Cena:

Then, we were in the arena for six hours (that's a lot of wrestling...I now know a lot about it. If you don't believe me, I'll F5 your ass, clothesline your fool self, and you can believe that, brother. Here are some men in underpants!

The Staples Center has a lot of rules. I don't understand the NO BROOMS rule, though. Why do people bring brooms to the Staples Center? Am I out of the loop, as far as brooms are concerned?

Monday, March 23, 2015

Saturday, March 21, 2015

I Am The World's Worst Mother

Today I had the joy of spending the morning with my oldest son, because I had to take my car to be serviced. He's 17 years old and about to graduate from high school. He's such a good person, and I'm so proud of him. But I'm not sure how proud of me he is.

Does your teenager do this? Did you do this to your mother when you were a teenager?...

When he drove me, if I said nothing: he would criticize me. If I mentioned his driving, he criticized me. At the grocery store, he said I wasn't polite enough. At the car wash, he said I was TOO polite. Basically, I don't know how to behave in society, according to my beautiful first born child.

Beyond that, he informed me that I yell at him all the time. I told him I didn't want him to go off to college with the memory of a mother who yelled at him for his whole life, so from now on I will never yell at him. I told him that if I wanted to yell, I would simply make a hand gesture (my hand out like a traffic cop), and then he would know that I was upset. He criticized this, and then tried for hours to get me to yell at him. First, when we went to the grocery store, I asked him to drop me off in the front of the store. He stopped and went and stopped and went, so I couldn't get out of the car. I put my hand out like a traffic cop and said: "Please let me out." He refused and drove to the far side of the parking lot and parked in the most distant parking spot. "Thank you," I told him and stuck my hand out in his face, as he turned off the car.

It went on like that for the morning. Loud rap music with the bass up to heart-attack levels. Singing old Queen songs loudly in my ear. My hand flew up in the air so many times, I looked like I was attending a Nazi meeting.

But I did it. I didn't yell.

Was he impressed? Was he proud? Nope. He told me how his friend's mother cooks better than I do.

*raises hand up*

Monday, March 16, 2015

You Can't Touch This...

How do I write? Every which way. Today I have the music blaring. Only happy music. And what's the happiest music?


Saturday, March 14, 2015

And The Winners Are....

I'm so sorry for being AWOL. I've been sick in bed with the computer out of reach. It was like living in the Dark Ages! All I was missing was a burlap dress and a case of the plague. Oh, wait...I think I actually had a case of the plague. Anyway, here I am! Finally, able to announce the winners of the Wish Upon a Stud signed tote bags. Winners, your bags will be in the mail this week. Congratulations!

Kimberley Porter
Kim Munoz
Anima-Christi Giraldez
Katy O'Leary Seegers
Lauren Raxter Reid

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Look What Came In The Mail! ...And a Giveaway

Hey, look what just arrived in the mail! The perfect way to carry my books (and my books on your Kindle!). How about I give away a few? Would you like one signed? By the way, did you know that the series is available now in a boxed set at HALF THE PRICE of the books? Leave you name in the comments on my Facebook page, and I'll randomly pick FIVE people to send a signed tote to today. (I can only do the United States for this giveaway)

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Walking to Nowhere

So...I've written while in every position and every location. Did you know that? I wrote Matchpoint (the second Matchmaker book) while lying in bed, recovering from surgery with the laptop propped on a pillow next to me, and I typed with one finger. I've written in Starbucks, like a million other writers, and even at my desk! But now I have a treadmill desk, which is pretty good, surprisingly...in a scary, I-don't-want-to-exercise kind of way. If I write standing up, I don't get pain in my shoulders and neck. Have you tried using a treadmill desk? They say that sitting is deadly, which is counter-intuitive, right?

The treadmill desk...either the best invention ever or the worst invention ever. Can you see all of my inspiring notes on the wall? There's a list of "gags" there for books...

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Dolly's Diet

I don't know how to break it to Dolly, but she's fat...and she has to go on a diet. Since she regularly breaks into the trash to find food, I don't think she'll take the news of her impending diet well.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Leave a Light On For Me

"Where do you come up with your ideas?" I get that question a lot, and I usually reply that the ideas are easy but it's the writing that's hard. And it's true. Writing is really hard...it's like running a marathon uphill in the dark in a war zone. Well, maybe it's not that hard. But it's hard! But my mind is overflowing with ideas. Luckily, instead of being locked away as a mental patient, I write books, instead and the let the ideas out of my crowded mind. Where do these ideas come from? Anywhere and everywhere. I'm a big people-watcher, even if I spend most of my time alone at my computer. But just about everything sparks an idea for a story. The latest that's got me going are the lights on that distant dwarf planet, Ceres. Have you heard about it? There are two mysterious lights on, and no one knows why. In my house, it's always my teenage sons who leave the lights on, but I'm not sure there are any teenage boys on Ceres. Or are there???? Ah, another story!

Thursday, March 5, 2015

My Virgin Blog and The Gilmore Girls

Hello! I'm finally here, with a daily blog. Today is my first. I probably should write something serious about plot structure or character arcs to mark this milestone, but instead, I thought I'd give you my two cents on The Gilmore Girls. A lot of writers listen to music when they write. There's nothing better to get in the mood of a really sad scene than some really sad music or an action scene with some action music. Well, you get the picture. But it's hard to write comedy while listening to music. There's a certain rhythm to comedy that you can't find in music. So, ironically when I write comedy, I have to sit in sad silence... unless I have Gilmore Girls in the background. The rhythm of the dialogue is perfect for comedy writing. I've heard that the writer of the Gilmore Girls had Buffy The Vampire Slayer episodes on a loop in the background when she wrote.