Friday, December 11, 2009

Wandering in The Magic District

So, there I was, minding my own business when suddenly the wonderful, sassy, and somewhat scary Diana Rowland's name appeared in my inbox. Always happy to hear from a fellow Southerner, I opened the email to find an invite to join her at The Magic District group blog.


I composed myself and answered that I would be delighted to join. After much celebration, I have officially joined the ranks of The Magic District folk. We're still working out a complete posting schedule but once I have that in hand, I'll pass it along.

In the meanwhile, check out my fellow word-wizards at The Magic District.

Monday, December 7, 2009

New Extreme Sport: Model Tipping

A new extreme sport has been created for all who love those barechested male cover models like those found at the Romantic Times convention. The sport is Model Tipping*, and here's how to play.

Model Tipping is similar to the traditional Southern game of "cow tipping" but is also similar to pro wrestling, cattle rustling, and catch-and-release fishing. Players capture the models in various snares, take photographic evidence of the capture, and then release the model into the wild. The important thing to remember is the catch-and-release part. We don't want to injure the cover models who make RT their natural habitat. Bruises are never sexy, ladies. If you're interested in playing, these are the rules that must be followed:

1. No weapons allowed, this includes clubs. We're not Neanderthals on the prowl for mates. This is a fun sport.

2. Sitting on or pinning models to the floor for longer than three (3) seconds will result in disqualification.

3. Hog-tying is permited but the model must be released after photographic proof of the capture has been taken.

4. Duct tape is not permited. However, leather straps are allowed. Creative use of bungee cords can result in bonus points being awarded.

5. All models carry a base point value of 20. Certain "advance models" carry a higher value, as shown below:
  • Fabio = 500 pts

  • Fabio in loincloth = +25 pts

  • Adrian Paul = 1000 pts

  • Adrian Paul with Highlander sword = +50 pts
  • Adrian Paul with Highlander sword, kilt, and bare chest = +500 pts
  • Any former Mr. Romance title holder = 100 pts

  • Any former Mr. Romance title holder with bare chest = +25 pts

  • Current Mr. Romance contestants = 50 pts

  • Current Mr. Romance contestants with bare chest = +15 pts
6. Photographic evidence of the capture must be taken to ensure proper point values are awarded.

7. Visible bruising of the models will result in disqualification.

8. Failure to release captured models after photographic evidence is taken will result in disqualification.

9. Capturing the same model repeatedly will not advance your score. One capture per player, per model.

10. All rules and point values are subject to change.

11. Game play prohibited were restricted by law. Other restrictions may apply.

12. No purchase necessary.

Remember, ladies, Model Tipping is a catch-and-release sport. Models tend to be sly and can be tricky to capture. Use your wits. Keep the field of play clean and safe. Have fun.

My thanks to Jennie Bentley and Kelli Stanley for their input and contributions to the rules. Now, go forth and happy Model Tipping!

*Model Tipping is extreme fantasy sport and complete, utter fiction and should not be attempted by those with heart conditions, bad backs, weak ankles, or extreme shyness. Players and models assume responsibilty for all risks involved and agree to hold the creators blameless for all injuries, heart breaks, and jealous spouses, significant others, and/or partners.

Mama Drama and Emotional Dodgeball

It's been a long, rough week and I'm exhausted -- physically, mentally, and emotionally. Here's why:

On Friday, November 27, my mother fell (who is seventy-seven, by the way) and broke three ribs. Thankfully she did not injure her hip, screw up the artificial knee replacement or shoulder surgery she had a few years ago, nor did she hit her head. The broken ribs did not puncture or injure any vital organs. She simply has large bruises on her side and hip and, of course, the ribs.

I, along with Mark, drove to Mississippi that same night, and I stayed with Mom for the week. Needless to say, I didn't get much writing done while I was caring for her, cooking, cleaning, doing laundry, taking Mom to the doctor for follow-up visits from the emergency room, etc. However, the sacrifice is paying off because Mom is recovering very well and is now able to stay by herself for the most part. My siblings are checking on her frequently throughout the day and there is never anyone too far away should she need assistance.

But, as often happens, life threw the family another undodgeable ball. The younger brother of one of my brothers-in-law was killed in an auto accident Saturday night just a few miles from my mother's house. It was late at night and the roads were slick from a rare snow fall in southwestern Mississippi. Jason was only a year or so older than me and we'd grown up together. His family lived "across the woods" from mine when we were growing up, and our families spent many summers enjoying one another's company. Aside from being my brother-in-law's brother, he and I had been childhood friends and although our lives had taken us in different directions, he was still a part of our extended family. My heart breaks for everyone who lost a son, brother, uncle, and friend on Saturday night. Jason will be missed.

However, on a happier note, I get to spend the next week at home with Mark and my kitties before having to return to Mississippi for my oldest niece's wedding. It's hard to believe she's even old enough to get married, but she is. It seems like only yesterday she was scrunching up her nose and pronouncing "noodle" as "noonle" and being obsessive about Barbie. Oh, how time flies.

Speaking of how time flies, there will soon be a new addition to my family...other than the nephew-in-law I'll gain next week. My third nephew and his wife are expecting their first child any day now. My first great...whatever. I love being an aunt. I get to spoil 'em and run...and since I live in another state, I get plenty of mileage out of the spoiling and the running.

Now, as for news on BLOOD LAW, there has been some new developments. My wonderful editor, Danielle Perez, is leaving Random House to take an executive editor position at NAL/Penguin. While I'm sad to see her leave before BLOOD LAW is released, I wish her the best of luck in her new venture. She's an awesome editor and I've learned a lot from working with her. She'll be missed but I'm also excited about working with my new editor, Shauna Summers. Because of all the "Mama Drama" that's been going on with me lately, Shauna and I haven't had an opportunity to chat yet, but I'm sure we will soon enough. I'm really looking forward to getting to know her and working with her.

Also, another new development: As of December 7, (today) I'll be joining the Criminal Minds group blog as a regular contributor. I was invited to join by the wonderful Kelli Stanley and since as how that entire group of authors simply rocks, I couldn't say no. I'll be making my inaugural post shortly on the subject of "Have you ever worried about your family's reaction to a scene you wrote?" Short answer: Hell yeah. Long answer: You'll have to read it on Criminal Minds. ;)

And mark your calendars! By now you should know that BLOOD LAW is scheduled for release June 22, 2010. However, you may not be aware that on June 23, 2010, I will be having a virtual book launch party at Bitten by Books! There will be prizes, Q&A, and mass hysteria. I'll post more details as they become available, but mark your calendars now so you don't forget. (And if someone could make certain to remind me a few days in advance that would be great because I'll probably be a quivering pile of babbling goo on June 22.)

I think that covers all the updates I have for now. Be sure to check Criminal Minds later and then come back here for instructions in a new extreme sport that I and a couple of friends invited. You won't want to miss it. ;)