Tag Archives: romance novels

Combo Question Time!

Sadje nominated everyone to answer these questions and I thought I’d have a go. Yes, I’m procrastinating, but I have written a lot on my novel lately, so there. 😛

1. How long have you been blogging?

– Since the end of 2003 (I’ve had several blogs).

2. Do your friends and family support you in this?

– No one cares.

3. Which is your favorite time of the day?

4. What would be your dream vacation?

– Stay home, read, write, watch movies, get massages, have a personal chef deliver meals.

5. What genre of movies [do] you like best?

– Depends on my mood. Good romcoms, mafia flicks, interesting psychological dramas, GOOD comedy, musicals!

6. What do you wake up to?

7. Are you a morning person?

– After a hot shower and hot tea.

8. What motivates you?

– Organization.

9. How do you think your friends see you?

– Don’t know.

10. What would be your idea for saving the environment from pollution ?

– Scoop up all the garbage and dump it on Mars.

11. Happy or peaceful, what is more important to you?

That’s it for Sadje. Now we go to Fandango, who has answered some Q’s about blogging from Calmkate and recommended we all do likewise. Sounds good to me!

What led you to start?

– When I first began blogging in 2003, it was because all the writers I knew had started to blog, so I thought I should too. Of course, they were blogging about their books and publishing contracts, but I didn’t have those things, so I just jabbered on about cats and cupcakes.

Has your motivation changed since starting?

– Not really. I still like cupcakes. In fact, today I saw on my Nextdoor app that a bakery just opened on Newport Blvd and they have these adorable cupcakes that look like little baby cactus plants, omg! I’ll have to go over there. 😀❤️🧁

What has the experience been like?

– Well, I made lots of friends (yay!) and had to deal with a couple stalkers (boo) and got into a big flamewar with some pit bull freaks and ended up closing that blog and opening a really tame one but it was too boring and then there was the private one during my mom’s illness and I quit for a while but missed it too much so I began this one to cope with my sads over the married man and didn’t even post much for a long time but here we are.

Have you learned anything?

– Never ever ever mention pit bulls.

Has your writing style changed?

– I go through various annoying phases but overall no.

Are you planning to write a novel or are you already published?

– Yes and yes.

What advice would you give to a new blogger?

– I’m just going to say what I like, which people can feel free to disregard. Talk about yourself or offer something interesting whether info or fiction or photos. Don’t make your blog a dry piece of toast that’s an impersonal pile of links or advice or god forbid news. We can google that stuff ~ no one is reading blogs to get links to Buzzfeed articles or shopping tips. We know how to find this stuff on our own. Figure out another way to monetize because that’s just too damn boring; I’ve unfollowed everyone who does this.

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The Artist’s Woo

Via Bee Halton. This is supposed to help unlock our creativity or summat, idk. It’s from The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron. Can’t hurt eh? Plus, yay questions!

1. My favourite childhood toy was… those horribly unrealistic Barbies that warped my brain. I had bunches of lady dolls and only one Ken, so naturally I created a house of ill repute, as you do.

2. My favourite childhood game was… spies with my friend Cheryl with invisible James Bonds. It took a lot of imagination. I also liked Clue and Battleship with less fanciful friends.

3. The best movie I ever saw as a kid was… Love Story (1970).

4. I don’t do it much but I enjoy… going to museums.

5. If I could lighten up a little, I’d let myself… go to paint night again!

6. If it weren’t too late, I’d… have pizza 🍕!

7. My favourite musical instrument is… the piano.

8. The amount of money I spend on treating myself to entertainment each month is… not a lot.

9. If I weren’t so stingy with my artist, I’d buy him/her… more paint nights.

10. Taking time out for myself is… a luxury and a necessity.

11. I am afraid that if I start dreaming… the day will float by with nothing done. Which is what is happening…

12. I secretly enjoy reading… romance novels (not exactly a secret). 😂

13. If I had had a perfect childhood I’d have grown up to be… more confident and independent at a much earlier age.

14. If it didn’t sound so crazy, I’d write or make a… VOODOO DOLL BWAHAHAHA!

15. My parents think artists are… dunno, they’re in a freezer at UCI.

16. My God thinks artists are… spending too much time thinking about God’s thoughts… do we even know God haz a brain?

17. What makes me feel weird about this recovery is… nothing, since I’m not doing it, psych!

18. Learning to trust myself is probably… something I should have done decades earlier.

19. My most cheer-me-up music is… rock & pop oldies. 🎶🎶🎶

20. My favourite way to dress is… warm & cozy.

The Queen Asks… [THWQ]

Today’s questions are:

1. Who is your favorite existentialist writer?

– Sartre

2. You find a mysterious package under your tree marked “from Your Fairy Godmother”…what’s in it?

– Glittery magic shawl

3. What is your favorite brunch menu?

– Nova Scotia lox, cream cheese, bagel

4. Who would you like to see in concert (living or dead)?

– Jimmy Buffett

5. Do you prefer literary fiction or commercial fiction?

– Commercial romances & mysteries

6. What is your favorite seasonal flavoring?

– Pumpkin pie spice

7. You need to make a gingerbread house, how do you decorate it?

– Lavishly with mountains of frosting and gumdrops

8. You have to dress as the opposite sex…what do you wear?

9. What is one piece of furniture that you can’t live without?

– Comfy sofa for kitty and me, for writing, sleeping, and TV-ing

10. If you can only have a non-standard pet (no dog, cat, fish, bird, etc.), what do you choose to have?

– Snake 🐍

11. What is your favorite aquatic lifeform?

– Dolphin 🐬

12. Are aliens real?

– There is probably other life out there.

13. What is your best anti-Trump slogan?

– Supercallousfragileracistsexistnazipotus

14. What is your best for-Trump slogan?

– He’s not Farrakhan.

15. If you could swap any two world leaders, who would you swap and why?

– Trump with Obrador (Prez of Mexico). Just because it would be funny.

16. You have a bun…what do you put on it?

Sunday Night Ramble

So, it’s been a few weeks since I finished NaNoWriMo (did I mention that I surprised myself and wrote 50,000 words?) and I want to keep the good writing momentum going. You’re actually not supposed to edit what you wrote until January, so I’ve been working on my poetry collection and (of course) noodling around on here.

I’ve also been reading a lot of news. Not gonna jabber on about the political dumpster fires because there’s enough of that elsewhere, but there is one thing that bugs me. I’m sad that the PC police have managed to ruin “Baby, It’s Cold Outside.”

Seems that some folks just can’t distinguish between fantasy and reality. What’s next ~ eliminate the romance novel section at B&N? Plenty of iffy consent scenes in some of those books… I’m surprised there haven’t been boycotts already. Some people can’t stand swear words; others can’t bear gory violence or horror on the screen. To each their own, eh?

Remember the old joke… to some people, kinky means tickling with a feather; to others, it means using the whole chicken. Subjective stuff, a matter of opinion. And in my opinion, opinions should be off-limits to the nannies. Dreamy song lyrics, fantasy art, and fictional novels/plays/films are in the realm of opinion.

I used to enjoy watching beauty pageants when I was a teenager, but now I think they’re boring and dumb. So, I don’t watch them. Wow! What a great solution to the problem of disliking an entertainment offering. Don’t watch it. Don’t read it. Don’t listen to it.

I’m not talking about trolls spewing death threats on the internet or engaging in hate speech. I don’t believe people should be free to engage in this behavior ~ in fact, I think they should be penalized severely.

But as far as fiction and fantasy triggering traumatic memories… there’s no end to that cascade. Some people find it cathartic to recreate a bad memory in fantasy and change the outcome. It’s a form of power. I do this. In fact, most of my writing may be this in one way or another. My NaNo work in progress definitely is.

Back to the writing momentum. Going forward, I’ll probably do fewer blog games and questions and awards because I want to keep my focus on actual writing, such as the prompts and poetry and such. Plus I have to catch up on reading too ~ real books, not just blogs. The games etc. have been a fun break though. Hope everyone understands!

Here’s a cute kitteh to console you.

Writing Questions! 😀

Via The Haunted Wordsmith

The Writers Tag was created by Lorraine Ambers and Ari Meghlen for writers to connect with each other and help expand our writing community. To participate, we answer 12 tag questions and are encouraged to tag other writers. So, here we go:

THE QUESTIONS

Name one novel which inspired me to write.

Welcome to Temptation by Jennifer Crusie

What’s your favourite genre to read and write?

– Romance

Do you prefer to write stand-alone or series?

– Stand-alone

Use three words to describe yourself.

– funny, reliable, intense

Reveal your WIP aesthetics or an image that represents your main character or setting.

(Coming soon!)

How long did your first manuscript take to draft?

– Six weeks

Who is your author idol?

– Jennifer Crusie

Share a writing memory that made you determined to carry on.

– Idk that I am. It’s often difficult to stay motivated, especially to write full-length novels while working full-time. I don’t do much else besides work and write. But right now I’m very into my WIP.

Tell us something surprising or unique about yourself.

– I’m pretty ordinary. Just a divorced woman who raised her kids and is now trying to get by and hopefully have a not-terrible retirement.

Share the hardest part about being a writer and how you overcame it.

– It’s having enough time of course, and I haven’t overcome it.

What’s your favourite social media and why? Share your link.

– I like this current WordPress blogging community. People are supportive and kind, and I find poasts to be generally fun, creative, and motivational. I’m very happy with you lot!

Share some uplifting wisdom in six words or less.

– Life is short; eat dessert first.

Regarding Twitter

I’ve been thinking about Twitter lately. Unlike Facebook, which I deleted in March (along with Instagram and Messenger), Twitter isn’t a time sink for me. I don’t get heavily involved in threads, conversations, private chats, etc. on Twitter. It’s basically a big nothing burger. I was using it for poetry prompts, but lately I’m not finding them that inspirational, so I’ve been reading more politics there, which is a bore. I can find that anywhere. 🙄

Trying to engage with other “tweeps” has accomplished nothing. I’m too late to the game. I’m not politically witty enough to come up with killer tweets to go viral… and even if I had one, then what? Would that translate into book sales or death threats? Now there’s a interesting question. I’m not anonymous. 😱

Here’s the thing. I’ve lightly promoted my writing on Twitter… to no effect. My promo tweets immediately slid into the giant sea of writers all doing the same. Everyone on the planet has written a book! Yesterday I met a successful writer and she admitted that her success was due to a completely random interview (not even a good one) in a relatively obscure print magazine. She’d done the other traditionally hyped ways of book promotion to almost no sales until the interview.

It’s very discouraging ~ if you’re writing to make money, that is. I have to look at it as a labor of love: the poetry, my romance novels and short stories, and my current WIP, which is a suspense/romance with supernatural elements. Plus I have lots of writing in various stages of drafts to work on as the spirit moves me. I hope to get it all done before I die. 😀

But there’s no reason to delete Twitter. It doesn’t annoy me the way FB did with the fake friends. I know the tweeps aren’t my friends (99% of them anyway), and Twitter doesn’t suck up my time with stupid notifs. But I do think my once a day or so quick check for poetry prompts and such is coming to an end. There’s no point in pretending to stay engaged there when I know it’s not going to do a damn thing to help me market my next book.

I’ll just let my blog poasts flop over as they do, and that’s all my timeline will be filled with eventually. Probably tweeps will unfollow me, or not… if they don’t bother checking Twitter any longer either, which is what I suspect in many cases. 😂

Q&A Casserole

Sadje and Pensitivity tagged me for this game, so I’m combining their questions into one massive casserole here and renumbering them to make logical sense.

I’m supposed to answer these, add three more, and tag three people. This is getting ridonkulously huge, so I’m leaving it open for anyone who’d like to continue it instead of tagging more.

1. What would Klaatu (The Day the Earth Stood Still) think of Earth if he landed today?

– Idk who he is. Odds are he’d land in an ocean, so he would think it was wet, my best guess.

2. If books’ characters were not imprisoned by their covers, which two characters would make a great couple?

– Jaime Lannister from GOT and me. Hey, I’m a character.

3. For US folks: Turkey, Ham, or Something Else on Thanksgiving? For Int’l folks: What is one food you recommend most from your country?

– I had turkey and it was meh as usual. I vastly prefer roast chicken.

4. Is there a fictional world that you actually wished existed?

– I think we should work on making this one better instead of destroying it.

5. What song always makes you smile?

– Hotel California.

6. How do you like your eggs in the morning?

– On a McMuffin.

7. After my three questions, what are your next three questions?

– Who’s on first.

8. Why do people lie and feel [averse] to telling the truth?

– Because they suck.

9. Why, in our so called progressive world, do we STILL have taboo subjects?

– See question 8.

10. Would you rather have smelly feet or bad breath?

– Smelly feet cuz I’ll just leave my sox on.

11. Have you ever spit in someone’s food? (If someone said yes, would you ever trust them to prepare your food again?)

– No! and no!

12. Do you have an opinion on garden gnomes?

– Couldn’t care less.

13. What makes you more uncomfortable, being too hot or too cold?

– Cold.

14. If you have siblings, do you sometimes wish you were an only child?

– I am an only.

15. What makes you really angry?

– People and their lying, including by omission of important/relevant info.

16. Why does [Superman need] a phone booth?

– Bad cell service.

17. Where does the other second sock go?

– Turns into a wire hanger.

18. Why [does] the rainbow sometimes appear in two arcs?

– Its joy is too great to be contained in one measly arc.

***Please answer these in comments even if you don’t want to do any of the others!***

19. What is your feeling about novels written in present tense?

20. How do you feel about mixed genre novels? Forex, if a novel was a romance and a detective story and had paranormal elements, would you be intrigued or turned off?

21. How do you feel about novels written entirely in first person? I realize it depends on the book, but would you be more or less likely to read it, knowing this?

Thanks! 😀

Lisa’s Eleven

No heists involved, just questions via Fandango.

Ready or not…

1. Socks? Love them or hate them?

– Love ❤️ them! I have tons of socks and need more. Most of my socks are not what you would term “conservative” either. Forex, the other week at game night, one of the friends said to me: “Um, Paula, are you wearing rainbow socks with kitties on them?!”

As a matter of fact, I was.

2. Is there a God?

– Like Fandango, I wonder why peeps are so obsessed with this question. If you believe in a god or gods, why do you care if others do or don’t? I thought the whole point of faith was that it was supposed to nourish and sustain the believer. If you don’t believe, then who cares? No need to be militant about it and snark at the faithful unless they’re directly affecting your life.

3. Is a pizza a pizza without cheese?

– Pizza is dough baked with tomato and cheese. That’s why you don’t have to say “tomato and cheese pizza” just like you don’t have to say “furry and clawful kitty.” It’s how God intended the thing to be.

4. What’s your favorite book and why?

– There are so many wonderful books. I usually say The Great Gatsby for its flawless writing or The Unbearable Lightness of Being for its delicious philosophy or Welcome to Temptation for inspiring me to write full-length romance. But I also adore the short story collections from Ray Carver and Haruki Murakami.

5. Do aliens exist or are we floating around in space all alone?

– I am inclined to believe that we are not so special and life has formed on other planets. Might have already disappeared, who knows. Or maybe it’ll show up in a thousand years to wipe us out, assuming we haven’t done the job ourselves.

6. Do you still have the teddy you slept with as a child?

– I don’t think I ever slept with any stuffed aminals, though I’ve had little ones as collectibles (not in my bed).

7. Brussel sprouts? Yes or no?

– Mostly not, though I’ll try a bite if they’re prepared in a new way. They’re usually still yucky though.

8. Christmas? Do you love it or hate it?

– Indifferent. I don’t celebrate it, but I’m happy to enjoy the lights and have time off.

9. What’s sexier – a beaming smile or thigh high boots?

– On a man? A smile.

10. If you were stuck with one view for the rest of your life, what would it be?

– The correct one, of course.

11. Which do you prefer? Spring or Autumn?

– Autumn.

Anyone else care to take on these questions?

They’re free right now, but I can’t promise they’ll be around after Thanksgiving!

Alphabooking

Via The Haunted Wordsmith.

1. Author you’ve read the most books from.

– Idk, maybe Lawrence Sanders (RIP).

2. Best Sequel Ever.

– Third book in Game Of Thrones.

3. Currently Reading.

– Incognito by David Eagleman.

4. Drink of Choice While Reading

– Hot black tea with milk.

5. E-reader or Physical Book?

– Prefer physical but being practical I do mostly Kindle these days.

6. Fictional Character You Probably Would Have Actually Dated In High School.

– Archy McNally, the cad.

7. Glad You Gave This Book A Chance.

Game of Thrones, book 1.

8. Hidden Gem Book.

Bodies of Water by Rosanne Cash.

9. Important Moment in your Reading Life.

Welcome to Temptation.

10. Just Finished.

Dandelion Stars.

11. Kinds of Books You Won’t Read.

– Books by politicians.

12. Longest Book You’ve Read.

– Probably one of the GOTs. Or maybe The Stand or possibly that enormous book about the orange vampires our stupid gobblement created in Central America to be weaponized against our enemies but they destroyed the planet. No, I’m not making that up and I read the whole ridiculously long horrible thing, gawd only knows why. I think there’s a sequel and I have a restraining order just in case.

13. Major book hangover.

– Staying up all night when I was 14 to read The Flame and the Flower.

14. Number of Bookcases You Own.

– Two (had to downsize during divorce).

15. One Book You Have Read Multiple Times.

The Great Gatsby.

16. Preferred Place To Read

– Anywhere.

17. Quote that inspires you/gives you all the feels from a book you’ve read.

– “And therein lies the whole of man’s plight. Human time does not turn in a circle; it runs ahead in a straight line. That is why man cannot be happy: happiness is the longing for repetition.” Kundera in TULOB

18. Reading Regret.

– Attempting Ulysses again. Blech.

19. Series You Started And Need To Finish (all books are out in series).

– No needs of this type.

20. Three of your All-Time Favorite Books.

The Unbearable Lightness of Being. The Great Gatsby. Norwegian Wood.

21. Unapologetic Fan-girl/boy For.

– King.

22. Very Excited For This Release More Than All The Others.

– None.

23. Worst Bookish Habit.

– None except I should read more.

24. X Marks The Spot: Start at the top left of your shelf and pick the 27th book.

– Wild guess… Eats, Shoots & Leaves.

25. Your latest book purchase.

Dandelion Stars.

26. ZZZ-snatcher book (last book that kept you up WAY late)

– My NaNo WIP. Literally fell asleep while writing last night.

Nope on a Rope

I grabbed these questions from Kristian ~ anyone can play!

1. Ending: A book ending that made you go NOPE either in denial, rage or simply because the ending was crappy.

Gone Girl comes to mind, but I still respect the writing. Not crappy! Just argh!

2. Protagonist: A main character you dislike and drives you crazy.

– Dunno. Compellingly terrible protags are a good thing. Like in GG.

3. Series: A series that turned out to be one huge pile of NOPE after you’ve invested all of that time and energy on it, or a series you gave up on because it wasn’t worth it anymore.

– I read the first four Game of Throne novels and the fourth was a hugely tedious slog. I’ve given up now and will just finish watching the wonderful show on HBO.

4. Popular pairing: A Ship you don’t support.

– I love naughty Archy McNally in the Lawrence Sanders mysteries but I don’t support Connie’s forgiveness of him every time he cheats on her (pretty much every book).

5. Plot Twist: A plot twist you didn’t see coming or didn’t like.

– Can’t think of any except GG. If I didn’t see it coming, then that’s a good thing. Mostly in romance I see them, but that’s okay.

6. Protagonist action/decision that made you shake your head nope.

– In The Dogs of Babel — why didn’t she just get an abortion?

7. Genre: A genre you will never read.

– Never say never. Generally horror with the King exception. Religious stuff in general, unless it seems really interesting.

8. Book format: Book formatting you hate and avoid buying until it comes out in a different edition.

– Idk comic strips maybe.

9. A trope that makes you go nope.

– Twins mixed up. Getting back with an ex (even though I’ve written this myself). Vampire luv except maybe gothic. Shape shifters of any kind (also have written). Motorcycle club love. Military love. Love in the winery. Pirate luv. Native Americans (the kind where a blonde finds hot sexy luv with one). The thing where a woman has to go to the ends of the earth to save her child from some ridiculous thing or other. The other thing where she returns to a small town for whatever bogus reason and gets together with that hunky high school guy who’s now the sheriff and drama ensues.

I HAZ ISSUES!

10. Recommendation: A book recommendation that is constantly hyped and pushed at you that you refuse to read.

– Books by politicians and other celebs. These people don’t have enough money?

11. Cliche/pet peeve: A cliche or writing pet peeve that always makes you roll your eyes.

– I can’t stand the excessive commas that are, apparently, correct usage. It diverts me from the writing, especially in dialogue.

12. Love interest: The love interest that’s not worthy of being one. A character you don’t think should have been a viable love interest.

– Can’t think of any.

13. Book: A book that shouldn’t have existed that made you say nope.

– Nope.

14. Villain: A scary villain/antagonist you would hate to cross and would make you run in the opposite direction.

– The Night King! (GOT)

15. Death: A character death that still haunts you.

– Robb’s pregnant wife getting stabbed to death at the Red Wedding (GOT).

16. NOPE! Author: An author you had a bad experience reading and have decided to quit.

– I can’t stand Nicholas Sparks. I don’t know why anyone reads him when there are plenty of good romance writers. He’s absolutely awful.