How My Brain Works.

I saw this link appear on my Tumblr and was immediately smitten (see picture below).  And then I started thinking…  One of the problems of not outlining my manuscripts is that I am quite open to suggestion from the outside world.  Hence, this gorgeous sword hilt (credit to original use of photo is in the above link)…

Rather than give up – attacking from the outside.

Given the post from a few days ago rather, ahem, defeatist – I think the solution resides in getting to know my protagonist a bit better.  Ananke St Clare Worthington has been a difficult girl to get to know.  She’s got more pressure on her than almost any other character I’ve written and something doesn’t seem to be clicking between ‘us.’  There are all sort of memes and questionnaires out there for character development, but this one seems to be a good place to start.  (And for the record, I’ll be answering as my main character).

A query letter I will never send.

Way back when I thought I was going to go the traditional route to publishing, I invested a lot of time and energy into two query letters (one for my first YA book and the second for my remaining unpublished novel I co-wrote).  The letters did well enough for themselves, garnering requests for both full and partial manuscripts.  Ultimately, I did not find an agent, but I did learn a lot about the publishing process. 

Book Review: Heads in Beds

So, I downloaded this book as research for Room 702 and I’m so glad I did!  While the other hotel books I’ve read (Hotel Babylon – the book, not the terrible BBC series – would be the closest to this one) provided something for my manuscript, I thought Heads in Beds was the most true to life.  While reviewers on Amazon seem to both love and hate the author, I found him to be very entertaining. 

Something I’ve always wanted to do.

I found this post at a favorite site I lurk at (fandom secrets) and it immediately struck a chord with me.  At some point I think (hope!) I’ve mentioned my love for the world of Betsy-Tacy by Maud Hart Lovelace.  This series, along with the brilliant Tamora Pierce were some of the first books I read (and would read over and over). 

Book Review: Devil in the White City

So, I’m way behind in finally reading this book. Given the act that it was recommended to me by a diverse group (my uncle and sister – demographically very different people), I was excited to start it. I rarely pick up non-fiction, but in this case, I’m very glad I did. Erik Larson lets no detail go unturned in this gripping novel. Prior to starting the book, I personally had little to no awareness of the World’s Fair of 1893 (or one of the most notorious serial killers the US has ever seen), however, given Mr. Larson’s writing style, I was immediately swept into the drama.

A swift kick from the universe.

I woke up this morning to a foggy day in Doha (these are rare and will probably burn off in a matter of hours, but I digress). Like a kid on Christmas morning, I logged into Amazon to check the sales for my books. Why? Because I equate book sales with personal success and any time I sell a book my mood is instantly lifted. Generally I see a big uptick in books sold between the period of Thanksgiving – New Year’s.

Do you consider yourself an adult?

Let’s look at the basics.  Hubs and I are coming off a week month most of 2012where we have repeatedly told each other, ‘we are failing at being adults.’  Case in point, I can’t remember the last time we actually went grocery shopping.  Yes, we of course go to the store and buy enough to feed ourselves (and our pets), but actually going to the store to stock up? 

What does an author get herself for Christmas?

I’m a lucky girl.  With two incomes and no kids, life is pretty easy for me and Hubs.  I can afford things I might not otherwise be able to if I had a mortgage or student loans or a bad credit history.  Trip to the Maldives for Christmas, what?

So, with a decent amount of discretionary funds, what do I choose to splash out on?

Ex-Pat Living: Things I Miss #4

Silence. Quiet. Sounds of nature.

While living in two very developing countries, the sound of construction has been nearly omnipresent. Naturally, our choice to live on one of the busiest roads in the region (Sheikh Zayed) and next to an active building site (which seems to be churning nearly around the clock) could be managed better, but the reality is that nearly any place one moves in this region they will face nearly constant sound pollution. Currently, Tower 23b of the Pearl (ne 14) is trying my patience on an hourly basis.