Friday, December 23, 2011

One dollar and eighty-seven cents. That was all. - opening lines to The Gift of the Magi by O'Henry

The Gift of the Magi by O'Henry is one of my favorite Christmas stories.

A beautiful story that teaches a lesson in gift-giving and sacrifice. The newly married couple desperately want to give each other a secret Christmas gift that each sells the one thing they hold most dear. Della sells her hair in order to buy Jim a fob chain for his watch and he sells his watch to buy Della a set of combs for her beautiful hair.

Here is the the end scene from the film I watched when I was just a girl. Hmmm, no wonder I'm a romance writer....



If you want to read the short story you can copy the link below into you web browser...

http://www.online-literature.com/o_henry/1014/

and remember as O'Henry writes... two foolish children in a flat who most unwisely sacrificed for each other the greatest treasures of their house But in a last word to the wise of these days let it be said that of all who give gifts these two were the wisest.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

In Liz Matis' latest PLAYING FOR KEEPS you will get a wildly sexy romance with depth and laughs. - Book Junkie

I've received the first review for Playing For Keeps from a book review website - called Book Junkie. I'm THRILLED beyond words - which is why I capitalized the word THRILLED.

Here is the review:

n Liz Matis' latest from Little Hondo Press, PLAYING FOR KEEPS you will get a wildly sexy romance with depth and laughs.

The need for change and a breath of fresh air is just what Sam Jameson needs in her life. As a journalist, just coming back from Iraq and a horrible experience she is looking hard for the next story, one that will take her mind of the trauma of what really happened in the middle east. Not to mention her PTSD, which she so happens to not be dealing too well with.

So what to do next. Well writing a few exposé's on a few rough and touch football players seem right up her ally. After all Sam is just one of the guys, and after Iraq she feels this is exactly what she needs.

In comes sexy football player Ryan, who just so happens to have been the star player in Sam's college girl fantasies. It doesn't help that he is now flirting with her and that really makes Sam out of sorts.

A really fun read, the personalities of each of the main characters really shine bright in this romance making you fall in love with them, flaws and all. After all I think that is what makes a story so great, is seeing that your beloved characters seem so real and human as you do.

With a strong supporting cast and a promised sequel this is a warm hearting and sexy romance that will surely heat up your cold winter nights.

A page turner, bring on the sequel.

Here is the website if you want to check out reviews for other books..

http://www.myfoolishwisdom.blogspot.com

So that is my awesome news for the day.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

A transvestite spends her entire life trying to look as feminine as possible and I have clearly spent mine celebrating my masculinity. Vin Diesel

Vin Diesel is my celebrity inspiration for Jake Miller my hero in Going For It, my work in progress. Jake is a running back with the NY Cougars - he's got a deep sexy voice like Vin and has that whole 'rough around the edges' thing going but he can also be silly (did you see The Pacifer). When I'm writing I'm picturing Vin as the actor in the movie version of my book. And boy does it ever help!



So with this picture I'm guessing a shower scene?
Oh yeah.
I love my my job.

Sorry you'll have to wait until April of 2012 to read it. But you can check out the steamy shower scene in Playing For Keeps with Ryan and Samantha (and Jake and Hannah make guest appearances - um, but not in the shower - it's not that kind of book - lol) - just click on the book cover above and it will take you to the Amazon website.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Using celebrity inspiration to create your heroes....


When creating characters, especially my heroes, I find it helpful to select a celebrity who has the same look and attitude of the man I want to create. Sometimes it's a little like being Dr. Frankenstein. For instance Josh Holloway is the inspiration for Russ Rowland in Love By Design - looks are pretty much the same except I gave Russ 'outback sunset eyes' because he is an Aussie. His attitude is Sawyer from Lost, the character Josh Holloway played. When I was writing I would just picture him in my mind and his lines of dialogue would be right on the money - had me actually sighing in places - and giggling.

For creating my hero in Playing For Keeps, Ryan Terell, my main influence was Kevin Nash, a former WWE wrestler (even though Ryan is a football player). Totally arrogant on the outside, he fit the bill perfectly but on the inside? he is more like Dree Brees from the New Orleans Saints. Here is Kevin...

On Wednesday I'll post a picture of my celebrity inspiration for my current work in progress, Going For It. Meanwhile, if you're a writer - what's your process for creating your hero?
If you're a reader what celebrity would you like to see in a romance novel?

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday 12/4/11

Since last weeks snippet was such a success I will continue a little later in this scene. Victoria has just finished off Russ by licking off ALL the chocolate she painted on his body. While he recovers she begins drawing on herself with whipped cream - then she draws an arrow from her breasts down to her - well you know... and this is Russ' reaction.


Something inside Russ snapped. All the energy she zapped from his body returned like a bolt of lightning waking Frankenstein from the dead and his thoughts just as carnal and primitive as when the monster saw his bride. Picking her up, he threw her onto the bed. The line of whipped cream beckoned his tongue. “I don’t need any damn directions.”

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 11/27/11


Six from Love By Design - (Victoria and Russ - reality make-over decorating show)
In this scene Victoria has just finished painting designs on Russ' body with Godiva melted chocolate. When she was finished she moved back and examined her work—his body.

She took out the paintbrush that had been clenched between her teeth and said, “I might have a new career.”
“As a torturer?”
“Body paint artist.” Her feline smile clued him into what was going to happen next.
Little flicks of her tongue skittered across his skin as she lapped off the chocolate as if she were a kitten given a bowl of cream. Didn’t she realize she was toying with a tiger?

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Top 10 Plot Devices to Get Alex O'Loughlin to Shed the Shirt (Hawaii Five-O)


Alex O'Loughlin plays Steve McGarrett on the re-make of Hawaii Five-O. I was so happy when he got this series because I missed watching him in Moonlight where he played vampire Mick St. John.( I would like to point out here that he's a lot like my hero Russ in Love By Design - he's HOT, Australian, and has ADHD )

Anyway, I'm enjoying Hawaii Five-O - however Alex could lose the shirt a little more often. Oh sure they try to work it in but us ladies want more! So I've come up with the Top 10 Plot Devices to Get Alex O'Loughlin to Shed the Shirt.

Alex plays Steve McGarrett so he will be referred to as Steve in the Top 10

10. Steve goes undercover at a male strip joint.

9. A waitress spills a tray full of drinks on him. (I guest star as the sassy waitress.)

8. They are investigating a crime scene at the beach, a woman is drowning and Steve being the former Navy Seal rushes in to save her. (I guest star as the drowning woman.)
Mouth to mouth ensues. :)

7. That darn global warming causes a heat wave to hit Hawaii. Off goes his shirt.

6. Steve must dive to a wreck at the bottom of the ocean to uncover evidence (I guest star as a mermaid?)

5. Steve and Dano bet who could beat who in a one-on-one basketball game. Off goes Steve's shirt.

4. A bullet grazes his shoulder and it needs to be stitched up. (I guest star as the naughty nurse.)

3. Steve is chasing the bad guys by a volcano – a spark from the lava hits his shirt and he has to take it off before it catches on fire – sweat begins to….oh, sorry.

2. Camera pans to his bedroom – he’s sleeping and wakes upon hearing a noise. He gets up to investigate. (I guest star as the woman in his bed? – no more likely the stalker who broke in.)

And the number one plot device to get Alex O'Loughlin's to shed the shirt?

1. Ummm…do we really need a reason? Just take it off, McGarrett. No female will notice if it doesn’t advance the plot.


There you have it. And for the good of my fellow woman if Hawaii Five-O wants to use any of these plot devices I won't ask for royalities - though I'm totally serious about being a guest star - I would have to bring the husband I suppose - AWKWARD.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

When a man talks dirty to a woman, it's sexual harassment. When a woman talks dirty to a man, it's $3.95 a minute. ~Author Unknown

I've talked before writing from a man's POV versus a woman's POV. The example below happened on Facebook last night and illustrates the way men really think.

Ok so last night I posted a couple of sentences from my work in progress Going For It - here it is...

Jake tried pretending she didn't exist - that her loveliness was a figment of his imagination but her soft moans along with her fevered pitched screams of her calling his name haunted his dreams. Hannah was so right - he did dream of her.

Deeply passionate - don't you think? Yeah, only a male friend/co-worker posted his hilarious take..

Here's Carmen's version: The Patriots could pretend the Jets didn't exist - that Sanchez's loud moans after getting sacked so many times along with Rex Ryan's fevered pitched screams of the referees calling "Patriots touchdown" haunted his dreams. Carmen was so right - the Jets suck :-

Men -are so simple - no wonder they don't understand us.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 11/13/11

My newest recent, Playing For Keeps, reached #7 on one of the Amazon Bestseller lists! Here is end of the first kiss scene.
Playing For Keeps is about a woman sportswriter and a professional football player. The scene takes place inside a stuck elevator. After playing a couple of rounds of Go Fish (a card game) – one thing leads to another – and they are kissing – and then…

“Ryan, we’re going down.”
“You’re going down?” he asked dazed.
She pounded on his chest. “No, you idiot!”
The realization of what she meant hit him like a bucket of cold Gatorade. He immediately released her and stepped to the far side of the elevator shaking his head. “And we spent the last hour playing Go Fish.”

Monday, November 7, 2011

Love of beauty and the desire to create it is a primal instinct of man. Eleanor McMillen Brown



Another one of Victoria's (my heroine from Love By Design) inspirations to become an interior designer is Eleanor McMillen Brown. Another pioneer in interior design she started her career in 1924 and started one of those most influential companies in design. She combined a sense of elegance along with business savvy. Here are some great quotes...

If you get it right the first time there's no need for change.
Eleanor McMillen Brown

To develop in taste, quality, and personality one is obliged to respect the past, accept the present, and look with enthusiasm toward the future.

For without the private world of retreat man becomes virtually an unbalanced creature.
Eleanor McMillen Brown, Creating a Beautiful Home by Alexandra Stoddard

Every room needs a touch of yellow.
Eleanor McMillen Brown, Creating a Beautiful Home by Alexandra Stoddard

We are often inclined to think of art in terms of pure decoration rather than as a vital part of our everyday lives.
Eleanor McMillen Brown, Creating a Beautiful Home by Alexandra Stoddard

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Love By Design - Book Trailer

I had lots of fun making the book trailer for Love By Design. I hope you enjoy it!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 10/30/11

Last SSS for now on Love By Design since Playing For Keeps will come out next week....

Setup: With the cameras rolling Russ has just smack Victoria with the pillow she made him sew and she grabs a bolster pillow and...

Victoria ran after him through the hallway and out the front door, the cameraman right behind her. Russ stopped on the lawn and turned to face her with his hands up in mock surrender since at some point the he must have flung his pillow away.
“Where did you get that?” He pointed to her fluffy weapon.
“I made it earlier.” They were now dancing like two boxers in a ring.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

It is just as disastrous to have the wrong accessories in your room as it is to wear sport shoes with an evening dress. Dorothy Draper



Like my character Victoria Bryce in Love By Design, Dorothy Draper was born into a wealthy family. Though for Dorothy her decision to open the first interior design business in the US was a bit shocking. It was 1923 and she revolutionized the concept of design.

Here are some quotes from Victoria's inspiration - Dorothy Draper


I believe in doing the thing you feel is right. If it looks right, it is right.
Dorothy Draper

Never look back, except for an occasional glance, look ahead and plan for the future. Success is not built on past laurels, but rather on a continuous activity. Keep busy searching out new ideas and, experimentally, keep ahead of the times, or at least up with them. Dorothy Draper

[there] seems to be within all of us an innate yearning to be lifted momentarily out of our own lives into the realm of charm and make believe. Dorothy Draper

I always think out a problem as clearly as possible, and then act on it. My theory has always been to get started. The moment I get an idea I act upon it. If only people would act on more of their ideas, I am convinced they would lead more interesting lives.
Dorothy Draper, Christian Science Monitor

[on marketing using interior design] You don't sell a commodity, you sell joy, gaiety, excitement. You aim at people's hearts, not their minds.
Dorothy Draper, Detroit News

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 10/16/11

Another six from Love By Design - that is out now in all your favorite ebook formats! As part of the show Victoria is going to teach Russ how to sew a pillow.

With the cameras rolling, Russ eyed the sewing machine skeptically while rubbing the stubble on his chin. “I don’t know, Victoria.”
“Just think of it as just another power tool.”
“A power tool?”
“Yes, like that jiggy thing,” she said, waving her hand toward Wood Working World.
“You mean the jigsaw?”

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

"I can always be distracted by love, but eventually I get horny for my creativity." Gilda Radner



Gilda Radner remains one of my favorites from Saturday Night Live
Here some are serious quotes from the very funny Gilda Radner....

Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what's going to happen next. Gilda Radner

While we have the gift of life, it seems to me the only tragedy is to allow part of us to die - whether it is our spirit, our creativity or our glorious uniqueness. Gilda Radner
.
“It's such an act of optimism to get through a day and enjoy it and laugh and do all that without thinking about death. What spirit human beings have!” Gilda Radner

Here are some funny ones....

I base my fashion taste on what doesn't itch.
Gilda Radner

I'd much rather be a woman than a man. Women can cry, they can wear cute clothes, and they're the first to be rescued off sinking ships.
Gilda Radner

I'm so full I can't hear.
Gilda Radner

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Love By Design - Available for Kindle, Nook, Sony, IPad, Ect



The hot prime time TV show, Design Intervention, starts the second season with its own surprise makeover. Interior designer Victoria Bryce must break in her temporary co-host, Aussie Russ Rowland.

Victoria, former socialite wild child hopes the reality show will give her the clout to launch her own design line without her family connections. Russ, former bad boy Australian TV star is using the show to launch his acting career in the States.

Sparks fly on camera as they argue over paint colors and measurement mishaps leading to passions igniting behind the scenes. But when their pasts collide with the present will the foundation they built withstand the final reveal?

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 10/09/11

From Love By Design - Release date for Kindle and Nook - TUESDAY!

Russ never liked it when women trekked to the bathroom together. It meant trouble. And not the good, fantasy type of trouble. At least she couldn’t accuse him of eavesdropping again. The door whipped open. Startled, even though he knocked, he took a step back from where he was lounging against the doorframe.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The thing women have yet to learn is nobody gives you power. You just take it. Roseanne Barr




I can relate to all of these quotes! How about you?

The quickest way to a man's heart is through his chest.
Roseanne Barr

Women complain about PMS, but I think of it as the only time of the month when I can be myself.
Roseanne Barr

I'm not going to vacuum 'til Sears makes one you can ride on.
Roseanne Barr

It's okay to be fat. So you're fat. Just be fat and shut up about it.
Roseanne Barr

I call myself a 'domestic goddess.
Roseanne Barr

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 10/02/11

Six more from Love By Design - to be released by the end of the month!!! Victoria is acting like she is mad at Russ for the benefit of the camera crew to throw them off that she and Russ are lovers.

“Well, if you had built it right in the first place, we wouldn’t all be standing around waiting for you to correct it.”
His eyes narrowed in that sexy way of his. “Me?” He stalked over to where she stood as the crew pretended to look away. “I was only following your plans.”
"Measure twice and cut once."

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Book or Film? Woodstock Film Festival.





After the Actor’s Dialogue Panel my sister and I hit the stores. Lot’s of nice items to browse but I was good. Then we sat at an outdoor cafĂ© and enjoyed a lovely lunch. (side note: Why are there no ice cream shops in Woodstock?) We attended the screening of East Fifth Bliss with Michael C Hall and Peter Fonda.
Here is the movie synopsis: Michael C. Hall is Morris Bliss in this coming-of-age tale of a 35-year-old with a wicked case of inertia. Bliss still lives at home with his father, mourns the death of his mother and just can’t seem to find a way out. When he stumbles into an awkward relationship with the sexually precocious, 18-year-old daughter of a former high school classmate, Morris quickly discovers his static life comically unraveling and opening up in ways that are long overdue.
I enjoyed the film – I give it 3 stars.


It was nice to have the director Michael Knowles there at the end to answer questions. And I had one – a big one – you see the movie shows Hall sleeping with all his clothes on at the beginning of the film – the 18 year even mentions it – as the movie moves along – each night Bliss removes one more article of clothing until he is sleeping naked.
So while I get this shows the character opening up - I wanted to know why is he sleeping in his clothes in the first place – so I posed this question to the director.
Me: “Can you talk a little about the symbolism of why he was shedding clothes.”
Director – Michael Knowles (I’m paraphrasing here) he says basically what I thought but adds that in the book when at the age of 14, Bliss’s is woken up to rush to the hospital – his mother his dying – he stops to dress and by the time he gets there his mother has died and he doesn’t get to say good-bye
Yeah – that’s big.
And there lies the problem of book to film.
The director went onto say that they didn’t use the scene because it was too dark and they wanted to keep the feel of the quirky comedy.

And why did he select this book? He was at a cigar bar in the East Village and a DVD of one of his films was being sold there and so was the book East Fifth Bliss by Douglas Light - and the author and filmmaker agreed on a trade! Then they spent the next (I think he said 2 years) writing the screenplay together. Cool story.

Monday, September 26, 2011

"Respect your craft." Vincent D'Onodrio


This was the second year I attended The Woodstock Film Festival. I love being around all these independent creative people!

My sister (the actress) and I (the writer) attended the panel called Actors Dialogue. Vincent D’Onodrio from Law and Order: Criminal Intent was this year’s surprise panelist. He also played Edgar, a giant cockroach-like alien who inhabits the body of a farmer in Men In Black. (How he created that character is a story onto itself.)
What can a writer learn from an actor? Here we go….
Actor: Preparation and commitment. He learned his craft before his big break with director Stanly Kubrick. D’Onofrio said that as a young actor he was amazed at the lack of preparation of some of the actors on set, which led to Kubrick firing them and sending them on their way. D’Onofrio was ready and in Full Metal Jacket he created one of those most shocking moments in film – he did it in 3 takes without direction from Kubrick.
Writing: How prepared are you? Have you studied your craft? Whether it’s an MBA in English, classes at a conference, or breaking down books in your genre – get prepared and keep on learning and growing. Are you committed to your writing?
Actor: He said Kubrick didn’t see the story as a whole or even in scenes but in 35 mm shots.
Writer: Every sentence is important. Look at each line we write and ask how it contributes to the whole.
Actor: Someone from the audience asked him how he prepares for a role and he said the first thing as actor you have to realize is that its all about Story, Story, Story (he karate chopped the table 3x times for emphasis). As an actor he asks himself how does my character help tell that story.
If you are familiar with Criminal Intent it was his decision to do the slight tilt of the head/bend of the character (it came about when he was questioning a suspect and the actor would only look at the table so he did a have bend until he caught the gaze of the other actor). Those famous pauses? – yeah he was told he couldn’t do that because it created dead air but he held his ground because he believed in his vision of the character.
Writing: It’s these little nuances that make a character memorable. What can you do to make your main character memorable? How does your character(s) help tell your story?
Actor: The best piece of advice he received as a young actor? Take it seriously. He was told he was great – that even when he failed – he was still great – but he needed to respect his craft and stop dangling one foot in – put both feet in and commit to your craft.
Writing: I’m going to take this one step further – Do you respect YOURSELF as a writer? If you do then you better log off now and get writing. (that is after you leave me a wonderful comment –lol)

Next time I’ll talk about the movie screening I attended and the problems of book to film and the director's answer to the question I posed.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 09/25/11

six more from Love by Design...


“It’s not going to fit,” said Victoria in a moment of pure panic.
“Will so,” grunted Russ.
“It’s too big.”
“No such thing.”
“Cut,” yelled Stephen.
Victoria tore her gaze away from Russ’s flexing muscles as he tried to maneuver a fifty-two-inch television into a spot she had created for a fifty-one inch.



I will be at the Woodstock Film Festival today so I'll check in tonight with all my six sunday peeps! Be sure to check back later in the week for a post about my experience. (Last year I breathed the same air as Keanu Reeves - but I was to shy to go up and have him sign my program)

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Writers, all the good ones, are Natural Born Liars. Daniel Keys Moran


Read a great article in Woman’s World magazine by Barabra Hustedt Crook titled: Be a Human Lie Detector.
This is great for real life AND in your writing. How does cop know the suspect is lying or the girlfriend know her boyfriend is being shady? Here is what Crook covered…

1) The liar’s lean - People tend to lean forward rather than away from their audience when they are fibbing.
2) Too much eye contact. This is a relief to me since I know I’m not an eye contact type of person – and always thought that it made me look guilty – but according to the study a liar has to struggle to maintain the lie their upper body freezes up – they won’t blink as often or shift their eyes only 40% or less of the time.
3) Lip licking/swallowing – when a person lies it causes the body to pump out adrenaline, which dries out the mouth
4) Not using contractions – remember the famous – “I did not have sexual…” - if only he used the word didn’t instead – lol
5) Nose rubbing – blood rushes to the nose under the stress of lying
6) A lot of detail – they pepper the story with details and try to skip over the details of the main event
7) Changing the Subject

There you have it. I hope you can use this in both your real and fiction worlds!
Wait let me add one more - #8 - A mother's instinct - we are the original human lie detector - at least of the littlest humans.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 09/18/11

Six more from Love By Design - release date late October... Russ and Victoria just had sex for the first time (in the homeowners living room :) .....


Russ wanted to reach out and trace his finger from the top of her spine down to the hollow of her back. Then do the same with his lips. He wasn’t nearly finished exploring the tapestry of Victoria’s skin. He blew out a breath and sat up next to her. “I’m covering for friend at the Thunder Down Under Male Revue.”
“Please tell me you’re a bartender.”

Monday, September 12, 2011

"Accustom yourself continually to make many acts of love, for they enkindle and melt the soul." St Teresa of Avila



Going old school for my famous women quotes - real, real old school

St. Teresa of Avila
(1515-1582) born on Mar 28
Spanish "mystic, poet". "She was one of the great mystics and religious women of the Roman Catholic church; author of spiritual classics, e.g., "The Interior Castle," 1575."

"I only wish I could write with both hands, so as not to forget one thing while I am saying another."

“It is love alone that gives worth to all things”

“I do not fear Satan half so much as I fear those who fear him.”

"Untilled soil, however fertile it may be, will bear thistles and thorns; and so it is with man's mind."

Nice quotes but uh-oh - see where her eyes are looking up at? :)

Sunday, September 11, 2011

"I want pills called September 10. You take one and your mind feels like the 11th never happened." - Doug Coupland


This is a picture I took of one of the towers during my 8th grade trip to NYC back in 1977.

Please take a moment to say a prayer for those taken from us on September 11, 2001.

Going to be a rough day but after a long prayer and some reflection I'm going to do my best to honor life and enjoy my day.

Monday, September 5, 2011

What I Did On My Summer Vacation...Part 2



My sister and I have been going to Pt. Pleasant for many years but only for day trips. Not this year - we rented a house for one glorious week. It struck me how when we slow down and get to spend a week in one place we notice the little things. Or maybe it’s just the writer in me.

On Saturday night there were many Jersey type shore people at Martell’s Tiki Bar - you know all the stereotypical people you would expect so I am wondering who are these two guys in their mid-twenties sitting in the back by the water – one is wearing jeans, solid red long-sleeve flannel shirt (remember it’s summer) with suspenders and he has long sideburns – his friend also wearing jeans and a blue plaid shirt – not flannel but long sleeved, mustache and smoking a pipe – yes a pipe. What is their story?! I had to hold myself back from asking then – which isn’t really all that hard considering how shy I am.
Then there were a group of girls – well women really – one wearing a head band with 2 penises dangling like playboy bunny ears – another holding a very large – like the size of one the prizes you win on the boardwalk – penis and waving it around the dance floor - the others had various penis shaped items – I’m guessing a divorce party?

On Sunday it was a rain-out but we saw a great family band called the Flying Mueller Brothers (all with long flowing blonde hair)– from what I gathered the father who had passed had started the band years ago and now one these brothers has one of their son (guessing around 8) playing with them – the kid was amazing. Of course this had me wondering of the stories this musical family could tell.

Monday - I’ve written a couple of pages of a women’s fiction novel that features the Virgin Mary so when I noticed a flyer for the Blessing of the Waters, celebrating Blessed Mother’s Accession to Heaven – I recognized this as NOT a coincidence and went. The sun peeked out as mass was held in Jenkins and then we followed the priest the shoreline. He stood on top of the lifeguard chair, gave the blessing, and I waded into the ocean to scoop out a cup of water (now blessed) and then helped get water for a few of the older ladies who were afraid to wade in. It was a lovely experience and nice to feel like one of the locals.



Tuesday – Seagull ate a crab in front of me – ewwwwwwww – but good to know they can still fend for themselves and not rely solely on the tourists for the litter they leave behind.
My sister loves to Karaoke (I do not) so she sang with a nice lady at the bar across from Martell’s. The next song my sister sang (Dream a Little Dream on Me by the Mama’s & the Papa’s) turned out to be the wedding song for the lady and her husband who my sister sang with! (There really are no coincidences).

I didn’t write anything down for Wednesday thru Friday – I just soaked everything in - read, drink and be merry.
Good thing because this blog entry would’ve been a book…

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

“We do not write to be understood. We write to understand.” C.S. Lewis

I always enjoy reading Poets and Writers. It’s interesting to see what writings from other genres are doing...

My favorite article in the Sept/Oct issue is titled The Unreliable Narrator by J.T. Bushnell. He writes… ‘you have to know not only who your characters are but also who they pretend to be, not only what they care about but also what they say they care about, not only what ideas they live by but also how those ideas are false……And you have to signal these disparities to the reader without revealing them to the character or straining creditability by making the characters to blind….their unrecognized truth….Understanding my characters’ secrets, illusions, and pretenses lets me see clearly how they’ll act, what they’ll say, how the action of the story challenges them….”

Bushnell uses the examples of Salinger’s Cather In the Rye and Wolff’s The Mickey Mouse Club to show how the ‘factor of unreliable narration builds a disparity between what characters believe and what is actually the case.”
And lastly – Note From the Editor writes… ‘Whatever you choose to write about today, dig a little deeper and make it matter - to yourself, to all of us.’

Well tomorrow I'm off to the beach for some deep thinking....and tanning.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 08/28/11


from Love By Design... release date - the end of October - but here is the book cover!!!! Please no licking your screen :))


With the cameras rolling, Russ eyed the sewing machine skeptically while rubbing the stubble on his chin. “I don’t know Victoria.”
“Just think of it as just another power tool.”
“A power tool?”
“Yes, like that jiggy thing.” She waved her hand toward Wood Working World.
“You mean the jig saw?”
“Yes, except instead of cutting up something, you stitch two pieces of fabric together.”
“It’s still sewing. Not that I’m sexist or anything.”
“Of course not, who would think that?” Victoria rolled her eyes for the camera.
He guessed he deserved that. But men didn’t sew; it’s simply not in the male genetic code

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

What I Did On My Summer Vacation...Part 1



Remember those dreaded compositions you had to do at the beginning of each school year? Wouldn't it have been cool just to hand in your Facebook page with all your status updates? This is what my report would have look like....

8/12 1 more day of work until 7 days of beach bumming

8/13 Is not to be trusted with chocolate...disregard this at your own peril
8/13 some tv guy just ask me if I was a fan of Jersey-lious. Like no
8/13 Is sitting on the beach with my Kindle reading The Tantric Principle by Jennifer Probst
8/13 Only in jersey..an orange lit up palm tree

8/14 It may be raining but I am still happy...reading State of Wonder by Ann Patchett
8/14 omg...if u r ever in pt pleasant on a Sunday you MUST go see the Flying Mueller Brothers at Jenkins from 2-4. and guess who is here enjoying the band? Capt. Sulley - the guy who landed the plane in Hudson River

8/15 Oceanside at the blessing of the waters for the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Cool.
8/15 The sun came out!

8/16 Will be starting Robopocalypse by Daniel H Wilson. I love being on vacation...
8/16 The only tough decision I have to make today is....funnel cake or ice cream...
8/16 ‎2 lifeguards wrestling in the sand :) :)

8/17 ‎"so I said Dude she doesn't like you, you're a midget..." (overheard conversation between 2 lifeguards jogging by)

8/18 reading Pride and Pleasure by Sylvia Day on the beach
8/18 "...my blood is worthless. But I would spill it for you." halfway thru reading Pride and Pleasure...so good!!!

8/18 Is reading The Next Queen of Heaven by Gregory Maguire

8/19 Just inspired by the lifeguard jogging by on the and showing a bit of butt...instead of the Coopertone baby they should have the Coopertone lifeguard - I should be in advertising...lol
8/19 Nothing but blue skies...

8/20 Vacation was wonderful but miss my husband and my son so its all good to be going home. :)
8/20 Afraid of vacation withdrawals symptoms so I stopped at the Twin Cone on the way home to have what became my daily 3:00 pm ic fix
8/20 My husband gave me a dozen roses as a welcome home gift..gee and all I got him was a chocolate covered pretzel with sprinkles...

Other stuff happened but that's why the above is Part 1

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 08/21/11

Back from vacation - this is continuing the scene I started on six sentence 8/7....



Another creak, this time closer, and she saw a figure by the darken archway leading into the living room. She was just about to let out a scream that would rival any made for Halloween movie when she heard the familiar Aussie drawl.
“I’m home, Cupcake,” he said as he entered the room with his hands up.
Victoria froze like a statue as if he was a bear she stumbled upon in the woods - or was the rule to drop to the ground, curl into a ball and try not to cry? She was a city girl for crying out loud. What did she know about taming wild animals or wild handsome Aussies? Well, she knew one thing: never stare directly into their eyes,but that is exactly what she did.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The past, the present and the future are really one: they are today. Harriet Beecher Stowe



(from Wikipedia) Harriet Beecher Stowe (June 14, 1811 – July 1, 1896) was an American abolitionist and author. Her novel Uncle Tom's Cabin (1852) depicted life for African-Americans under slavery; it reached millions as a novel and play, and became influential in the United States and United Kingdom. It energized anti-slavery forces in the American North, while provoking widespread anger in the South. She wrote more than 20 books, including novels, three travel memoirs, and collections of articles and letters. She was influential both for her writings and her public stands on social issues of the day.

Here are some quotes...
Friendships are discovered rather than made.
Harriet Beecher Stowe

I did not write it. God wrote it. I merely did his dictation.
Harriet Beecher Stowe

I would not attack the faith of a heathen without being sure I had a better one to put in its place.
Harriet Beecher Stowe

Never give up, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.
Harriet Beecher Stowe

Hope you enjoyed these quotes.

I won't be taking part in 8/14/11 Six Sentence Sunday - I will be a beach bum for the coming week proving Harriet's quote....

"Human nature is above all things lazy."

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 08/07/11

Another six from Love By Design - Here Victoria is alone at the make-over house late at night finishing up the days work when she hears a noise....



Did she remember to check the lock after the last of the crew left? Maybe the house was haunted. Please, please let the house be haunted.
“Who’s there?” What kind of stupid ass question was that? As if a robber or worse would announce himself. Where was that nail gun?


Next week I'll continued the scene....

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

I don’t get writer’s block. I have writer’s failure, where I’m working on something and realize it blows.” JJ Abrams


I picked up a copy of Creative Screenwriter at the Border's Going Out of Business Sale :( At 40% off I thought I give it a read – not that I ever plan to write a script, but studying other forms of writing can teach valuable lessons.

Take the article by Adam Stovall on J.J. Abrams (Lost, Super 8, Star Trek)
Abrams talks about ripping off genres or a certain movie lets say Jaws that they are ripping off the wrong thing. He says, “You’re not supposed to rip off the shark! Rip off the characters. Rip off the stuff that matters. Look inside yourself and figure out what matters to you.
And he discusses his reasons for success…you must believe in two things…
“One is that your voice is as valid as anyone else’s. Despite their experiences or title or wealth or fame, what you have to say is just as important. Secondly, if something really interests you and you really believe that there is something powerful and compelling in an idea you have, you’re not alone in that and other people will feel the same way.”


Update on my writing? Well, I'm in the process of going Indie with both Playing For Keeps and Love By Design. While I'm researching my women's fiction story I'm going to write a novella called Annie Get Your Pitchfork which I started years and years ago. Hopefully I do not get writer's block or writer's failure!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 07/31/11

Love By Design... Russ has just been approached by a groupie. He doesn't say much and the groupie says she likes a man a few words and then...

Normally Russ would be happy with a woman who valued that trait in a man. He certainly did so in a woman. After pretty and uncomplicated, that is. Victoria was plenty pretty but complicated as a computer manual written in Spanish. And she was opinionated and mouthy like a political radio host.
So why wasn’t he throwing on the charm with the lovely lady right in front of him? Because he didn’t need too.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Who said -' A smile is a curve that sets everything straight.' ?


Phyllis Diller! I remember Phyllis Diller from Laugh-In, Hollywood Squares, and Dean Martin Roasts, She is one of the world's funniest people and did USO shows with Bob Hope. Here are some great quotes....


We spend the first twelve months of our children's lives teaching them to walk and talk and the next twelve telling them to sit down and shut up. Phyllis Diller


I buried a lot of my ironing in the back yard. Phyllis Diller

Burt Reynolds once asked me out. I was in his room.
Phyllis Diller

Housework can't kill you, but why take a chance?
Phyllis Diller

My recipe for dealing with anger and frustration: set the kitchen timer for twenty minutes, cry, rant, and rave, and at the sound of the bell, simmer down and go about business as usual.
Phyllis Diller

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 07/24 /11

Six more from Love By Design - well actually 4 because I think I cheated last week with 7 - ok - 8 sentences (shhhh!!!!)


God, she was adorable when she was mad. He couldn’t help but kiss her, if only to shut her up.
He didn’t mean to be so rough when he picked her up but between his own temper and body pumping with desire he forgot she weighed next to nothing. But that didn’t stop the pint-sized vixen from kissing like a six-foot Amazon ready to order him to her lair.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

“The pen is not just a recording device; it can also be an instrument of discovery.” Billy Collins

Here are some random things from Poets & Writers Magazine

From a series of interviews with first fiction author:

With William Giraldi, author of Busy Monsters:
People sometimes ask me when I chose to be a writer and I say about the same time you chose to be a man, or a woman.

I remember wanting to be a young literary sensation, as so many do. There’s obscene pressure on writers to be the next hot young thing. As if literature were a modeling agency. But let’s be honest. Most hot young things have nothing of value to say, and how could they? They haven’t read enough. It took me twenty-five years of reading and twelve years of practice to produce a book worthy of being in the world.

And even though I am not I great fan of Twitter I found the article by Lauren Cerand How to Use Twitter to Connect with Readers interesting.
Such as…
Having them follow you back is not as important as being in the position to respond to a question or opportunity they might offer their followers.
And
Categorize your tweets using hashtags, which organize topics of interest.

Then the article called Decisions, Decisions – Three Different Paths To Publication which follows 3 women on their path to publication. Michele Toth’s path got me thinking – here is a graduate of Harvard Business School who has gone the Indie route - so why shouldn’t I?

I was in the middle of researching this when I received a request for a full from an on-line publisher of romances – but I’m not holding my breath – while the manuscript has been sent I’m continuing my research so I’ll be ready to go if it’s a no.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 07/17 /11


I've mentioned previously that Russ was created with Josh Holloway (from LOST) in mind. Russ has the same rough edge and bestows nicknames...in a previous scene he took a piece of cupcake for Victoria's fingertips...anyway this is after the first kiss which you read last week....


His smile mocking but his touch gentle, Russ drew her into his arms. As he bent his head to kiss her again she placed her hand on his chest in a stopping motion, his lips inches from hers. “Don’t you have somewhere to be?”
He straightened and laughed. “That I do. You make a man forget himself.” He opened the door but turned his head before leaving, his golden brown hair flipped with the movement leaving a couple of strands in front of his eyes. A crooked grin appeared on his face. “See you tomorrow, cupcake.”

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

To create one's world in any of the arts takes courage. Georgia O'Keeffe


Georgia Totto O'Keeffe (November 15, 1887 – March 6, 1986) carved out a significant place for women painters in an area of the American art community that had been exclusive to and is still dominated by men, but also she had become one of America’s most celebrated cultural icons.

Here are some quotes....
I decided that if I could paint that flower in a huge scale, you could not ignore its beauty.
Georgia O'Keeffe

I feel there is something unexplored about woman that only a woman can explore.
Georgia O'Keeffe

I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn't say any other way - things I had no words for.
Georgia O'Keeffe

I often painted fragments of things because it seemed to make my statement as well as or better than the whole could.
Georgia O'Keeffe

One can not be an American by going about saying that one is an American. It is necessary to feel America, like America, love America and then work.
Georgia O'Keeffe

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 07/10 /11

From the first kiss between Russ and Victoria - Love By Design - they are in the homeowners bathroom (they are co-hosts on makeover show)

Russ growled against her lips as her tongue joined his in what became a tango, each vying for dominance. His hand slid up to her aching breast, brushing the tip with his thumb. Releasing her hold on his back to reach for his belt buckle, Victoria thought she was losing her balance as her backside dipped into the bowl of the sink. Automatically she reached back, her hand mistakenly hitting the faucet, and cold water sprayed onto her skirt.
They broke apart like two dogs in heat being separated with a garden hose.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

I am not handsome or sexy. Of course, it's not like I am hopeless. Keanu Reeves


Ok so it's not part of my Quotes By Famous Women Series but I heart Keanu Reeves and you gotta to love a guy who eats a cupcake with such gusto! Here are some great quotes from Keanu (who by the way is very sweet - saw him at the WFF)

I'm Mickey Mouse. They don't know who's inside the suit.
Keanu Reeves

Kissing someone is pretty intimate, actually very intimate, and your heart always kind of skips a beat before you do that.
Keanu Reeves

The simple act of paying attention can take you a long way.
Keanu Reeves

...and you have to love a guy who has a sense of humor....

People were saying that David Geffen and I had gotten married and it just blew me away. Not that they thought I was gay, but that they thought I could land a guy that hot. Keanu Reeves

On a good night, I get underwear, bras, and hotel-room keys thrown onstage... You start to think that you're Tom Jones.
Keanu Reeves

Ok - I would not throw my bra at Keanu Reeves - 1) I very much need my bra 2) It's so big it might hurt him!
See I have a sense of humor too!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 6/26/11




Another six from Love By Design. One of my favorite scenes from the book. The cast and crew are on a break eating cupcakes (celebrating a birthday) Russ declines but can't keep his eyes off of Victoria eating one and nearly slices off a finger - Victoria rushes over and tells him he should be more careful.


"Maybe, if you took your little tea party inside I wouldn’t be distracted.” He'd be just fine if cupcakes were banned from the set and while he was at it, he'd outlaw those tight, short skirts she paraded around in.
“Somebody’s cranky.” She offered her last bite up to Russ and added, “That’s what happens when you pass up cake.”
Instead of reaching for it with his hand, his mouth swooped down and took it from her fingers, licking the tips with his tongue. He relished the gasp of surprise on her face more than the rush of the sugary treat. “If I’d known you were going to hand feed me, I wouldn’t have said no.”

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Morning comes whether you set the alarm or not. Ursula K. Le Guin




Ursula K. Le Guin is one of my favorite writers. She makes me want to write - but at the same time makes me realize I'm woefully inadequate. Here are some fabulous quotes from her:

My imagination makes me human and makes me a fool; it gives me all the world and exiles me from it.
Ursula K. Le Guin

We are volcanoes. When we women offer our experience as our truth, as human truth, all the maps change. There are new mountains.
Ursula K. Le Guin

What sane person could live in this world and not be crazy?
Ursula K. Le Guin



The only questions that really matter are the ones you ask yourself.
Ursula K. Le Guin

The only thing that makes life possible is permanent, intolerable uncertainty; not knowing what comes next.
Ursula K. Le Guin

The unread story is not a story; it is little black marks on wood pulp. The reader, reading it, makes it live: a live thing, a story.
Ursula K. Le Guin

There are no right answers to wrong questions.
Ursula K. Le Guin

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Act V - Famous Lines From Shakespeare


Act V – Shakespeare and the Art of Verbal Seduction by Hill and Ottchen

There are lots of great lines from Shakespeare in the chapter on Angling but I’m going to keep it to my ten favorites….

Othello
1. An unauthorized kiss!
2. In following {you} I follow but myself.

As You Like it
3. {Being in love} ‘tis a fault I will not change for your best virtue.
4. Imagine me {your} love, {your} mistress; and every day woo me.

Hamlet
5. Thou turns’t my eyes into very soul.

Much Ado About Nothing
6. But for which of my bad parts didst thou first suffer love for me?

Romeo and Juliet
7. Woo {me} gentle….get {my} heart.
8. Did my heart love till now?
9. I have an interest in your heart’s proceeding.

The Taming of the Shrew
10. Is it possible
That love should of a sudden take such hold?

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 6/19/11


Six more from Love By Design... the cameras are rolling as Victoria is explaining to Russ what he has to build for the room make-over...


Russ didn’t take off his shirt as much as he stripped it off exposing a six-pack to rival any man on the cover of Men’s Health. Tan, taunt skin stretched tightly across his chest. As a child Victoria had been fascinated by colors and textures; always touching and exploring the world around her.
She was no different now.
She gripped the worktable so she wouldn’t reach out to glide her fingers over his glistening skin. If Michelangelo could travel though time he’d cry for a fresh block of marble, though she doubted even he could replicate the chiseled form of Russ’ body.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Don't spend time beating on a wall, hoping to transform it into a door.
-- Coco Chanel





From Wikipedia: Gabrielle Bonheur "Coco" Chanel (19 August 1883 – 10 January 1971) was a pioneering French fashion designer whose modernist philosophy, menswear-inspired fashions, and pursuit of expensive simplicity made her an important figure in 20th-century fashion. She was the founder of one of the most famous fashion brands, Chanel. Her extraordinary influence on fashion was such that she was the only person in the couturier field to be named on Time 100: The Most Important People of the Century.

Here are more awesome quotes from Coco Chanel:

Nature gives you the face you have at twenty; it is up to you to merit the face you have at fifty.
-- Coco Chanel


The best color in the whole world, is the one that looks good, on you!
-- Coco Chanel


Luxury must be comfortable, otherwise it is not luxury.
-- Coco Chanel


In order to be irreplaceable one must always be different.
-- Coco Chanel


Dress shabbily and they remember the dress; dress impeccably and they remember the woman.
-- Coco Chanel


Fashion fades, only style remains the same.
-- Coco Chanel


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Act IV - Shakespeare and the Art of Verbal Seduction


I'm continuing to enjoy Shakespeare and the Art of Verbal Seduction by Hill and Ottchen.

Here are some of my favorites from the chapter on Enticements and Inducements

Cymeline:

1. I dedicate myself to your sweet pleasure.

Love's Labour's Lost

2. Mistress, look on me,
Behold the window of my heart, mine eye,

Measure For Measure

3.All my life to come
I'll lend you all my life to do you service.

The Winter's Tale

4. Come! come buy! come buy!
Buy, lads, or else your lasses cry.

Two Gentlemen From Verona

5. A thousand oaths, an ocean of {my} tears,
And instances of infinite love,
Warrant {your} welcome

6. Upon the alter of {your} beauty
{I} sacrifice {my} tears, {my} sighs, {my} heart.

A Midsummer Night's Dream

7. Run through fire I will for thy sake!

Othello

8. {I have} devoted and given {my}self to the
contemplation, mark, and denotement of {your} parts
and graces.

9. I {am} nothing, but to please {your} fancy.

Romeo and Juliet

10. {I} shall happily make thee....a joyful bride.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

SIx Sentence Sunday - 6/12/11


Six more from Love By Design....

But the cowardly director knew better and had deserted the set leaving Russ to handle Victoria who was about to boil over like the Lady Knox Geyser in New Zealand. He’d seen it blow once and was awed by the power and beauty of the display. Russ stood transfixed now as Victoria’s eyes burned like ice on fire as she paced back and forth, building up steam as she mumbled obscenities. Beautiful, rare, and volatile - but still a brat.
Would it be sexual harassment if he laid her across his knees and gave his high-strung co-host a spanking? More than his hand itched to do it.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Free Short Story - It's a Doll's Life by Elizabeth Matis (me!)



There is no official Six Sentence Sunday this week so I thought I'd offer a free read!

It’s a Doll’s Life
by
Elizabeth Matis


Dusting the shelves of Laurel’s Playhouse was the worst part of owning a business. As if cleaning her house wasn’t enough.
The chimes rang cheerfully announcing her first customer of the day. Grateful for the interruption, she put on her best smile and made for door.
The man who entered towered over the dolls and miniature houses like Gulliver over the inhabitants of Lilliput. Blonde hair wisped out from underneath a cap. Wearing jeans, a blue work shirt and construction boots, he was dusty as he was big. He turned away from the row of shelves she stood behind and her gaze immediately lowered. Still, she wouldn’t mind wiping that bit of dirt off his rear and not with a feather duster. Such tasks required a hands-on approach.
He looked out of place among the frilly lace and ribbons. The expression ‘bull in a china shop’ came to mind. Except this bull was in her doll shop.
Laurel stole out of her hiding place. “Can I help you?”
He turned and smiled. “I’m looking for a gift for my sister’s birthday.”
His twinkling blue eyes were a pleasant relief to the lifeless stares of her collection. Standing next to him she felt like one of those dolls: petite and very feminine. “How old?” she managed to ask.
“Sixteen.”
“Ahh, sweet sixteen.”
“Darling, you haven’t met my sister.”
She laughed at his joke, but foolishly blushed at the endearment. “What are her interests?”
Laurel twisted her hands in an effort not to brush away the dirt on his shirt. Where had her aversion to cleaning gone?
“Boys,” he said, his tone exasperated.
Again she laughed. “And she still collects dolls?”
He nodded. “Not that she’ll admit to.”
Laurel ran the inventory in her head. “Come with me.” She led him over to a display by the front window praying he wouldn’t knock anything over. It was cute how careful he was not to. “I think she might appreciate one of these.”
He was looking directly at Laurel when he said, “Perfect.”
She smiled as she carefully picked up one of her favorites, a sophisticated Gibson Girl doll that was about a foot tall. The figurine reminded Laurel of a bygone era when men were gentlemen or at least pretended to be. “Do you want it wrapped?”
“Yes.” He held up his hands. “These can save a plant from the compost pile, but when it comes to wrapping I’m all thumbs.”
Good looking and a great sense of humor. It had been a long time since a man made her laugh. As she worked the ribbon around the box she wondered if he was married. He didn’t have a ring on his finger, but that didn’t mean anything. Who’d wear a ring if they were making mud pies, which is exactly what he’d looked like he’d been doing before he entered her shop. She took his credit card and shamelessly noted the name. Ethan Edwards.
Laurel slid the bill across the counter and held out a pen. “Please sign at the bottom.”
Ethan’s fingers brushed hers. Her breath hitched and the pen fell to the counter. It could’ve been static electricity except the feeling was pleasant. “Sorry.”
“Don’t be.” Ethan picked up the pen and his hand hovered for a moment over the paper like he’d forgotten how to write his name. “Thanks for the help Laurel. It is Laurel, right?”
She hoped the surprise she felt did not show on her face. It seemed he took note of the name of her store. “Yes it is. Come again.”
She could have smacked herself. Sure, he had every reason to stop by and browse in her doll shop – unless he had more sisters. Or nieces. Please, please don’t let him have daughters. That meant at best an ex-wife, at worst, a wife.
“By the way, I’m Ethan. I’m opening a gardening center down the street.”
“That explains the dirt.” The comment was out of her mouth before she could stop the words. Her flirting skills obviously needed polishing. A year had passed since her ex-finance had broken her heart. Maybe, she needed a refresher course.
But he wasn’t offended and laughed. “Yeah, sorry about that.”
The chimes dimly sang out as he departed.

When Laurel drove by his store during the following week she noted how it sprung to life with the arrival of plants and flowers. As she inventoried the backroom she mentally planned out the changes she wanted to make to her own garden. Perhaps she could ask Ethan for advice. Lame, but it was a perfectly acceptable excuse to see him again.
. The chimes rang and by the force of the sound she knew it was Ethan.
She barely recognized the man holding the bouquet of sunflowers. He wore khakis and a pressed white shirt, his hair neatly combed back. Not a spot of dirt on him.
“Hi Ethan. Did your sister like the doll?”
“Bea loved it.” Ethan shuffled his feet. “These are for you.”
She took the flowers he offered and raised the bouquet to her nose to breathe in the scent. “Thank you, but you didn’t have to.”
“I’ve been busy with the opening but when I saw them I remembered your smile.”
“Oh. How sweet.” Laurel blushed.
“Will you have dinner with me tonight?”
Laurel said yes. After all, Ethan cleaned up real nice.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Act 3 - Shakespeare and the Art of Verbal Seduction


More from Shakespeare and the Verbal Art of Seduction by Wayne Hill and Cynthia Ottchen and these are listed under the section of Icebreaking.

From PERICLES:


1. Are you flesh and blood?
Have you a working pulse, and are no fairy
Motion? Well, speak on. Where were you born?

From ROMEO AND JUIET

2. One fairer than my love! The all-seeing sun
Ne'er saw {your} match since the world began

3. Heaven and earth...do meet in thee at once.

4. {You are} the dearest morsel of the earth.

From THE TEMPEST

5. Now I will believe there are unicorns.

Next time I'll share some of my favorites from the chapter on Enticements and Inducements...

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

I still have my feet on the ground, I just wear better shoes. Oprah Winfrey


No more Oprah! What will we do? Worse yet, my yet to be written opus - Madonna of the Highway will never be a Oprah Book Selection! LOL!

I thought I'd share some quotes from the most famous of women...

When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.
Oprah Winfrey

You CAN have it all. You just can't have it all at once.
Oprah Winfrey

So go ahead. Fall down. The world looks different from the ground.
Oprah Winfrey

Doing the best at this moment puts you in the best place for the next moment.
Oprah Winfrey

Excellence is the best deterrent to racism or sexism.
Oprah Winfrey

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 5/29/11


More from Love By Design. Russ dancing in a couple of shows for the Thunder Down Under Male Revue as a favor for a friend who has lined up a bunch of groupies for after the show. Russ declines because of the early call time for his co-hosting job on Design Intervention and his friend scoffs and tells him he's whipped and Russ replies.....


“I’m so single, I make George Clooney look like a married man.” In actuality he might as well be a monk, contrary to what the Australian tabloids wrote about him, but his fellow Aussie didn’t need to know that or that Russ was falling for a pixie in high heels. “I’m sure you’ll find a way to satisfy them all.”
“I’m just one man, Rowland.” Brady snapped a towel at Russ’ knees. “Just one man,” he repeated before heading into the dressing room to change for the finale.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Act 2 - SHAKESPEARE and the Verbal Art of Seduction




More from Shakespeare and the Verbal Art of Seduction by Wayne Hill and Cynthia Ottchen and these are listed under the section of Icebreaking.

(and yes that is Keanu Reeves as Hamlet - don't laugh he is a great lover of Shakespeare and I found this regarding his performance -"His performance in the title role in a Manitoba Theatre Centre production of Hamlet was praised by Roger Lewis, the Sunday Times, who declared Reeves "...one of the top three Hamlets I have seen, for a simple reason: he is Hamlet."
But enough about Keanu - well there can never be enough....anyway...

From Hamlet:

1.How do you, pretty lady?

2.I have words to speak in thine ear.

From: Love's Labour's Lost:

3. Vouchsafe to show the sunshine of your face,
That we, like savages, may worship it.

4. White-handed mistress, one sweet word with thee.

From:Measure For Measure

5. Your bum is the greatest thing about you.

From A Midsummer Night's Dream:

6. What angel wakes me from my flowery bed?

From Much Ado About Nothing:

7. In mine eye {you} are the sweetest lady that ever I looked on.

8. Come, bid me do anything for thee.

From Othello:

9. {You're} a most fresh and delicate creature.

10. {Thou} are so lovely fair and smell'st so sweet
That the senses aches at thee

Made it up to page 13! Lots still to go. Which of these ten are your favorite?

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

"I wanted to be the first woman to burn her bra, but it would have taken the fire department four days to put it out." Dolly Parton


Hahaha - I can relate to the above quote from Dolly Parton - but it would only take 2 days to put out the fire - not 4. - LOL

You have to love a woman who has her own amusement part - Dollywood - how great is that?! Here are some more quotes from the country music singer and actress....

I'm not offended by all the dumb blonde jokes because I know I'm not dumb... and I also know that I'm not blonde.
Dolly Parton

If you don't like the road you're walking, start paving another one.
Dolly Parton

It's a good thing I was born a girl, otherwise I'd be a drag queen.
Dolly Parton

The way I see it, if you want the rainbow, you gotta put up with the rain.
Dolly Parton

We cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails.
Dolly Parton

Which is your favorite?

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 5/22/11




Another one from Love By Design. Co-host Russ has just arrived on set of Design Intervention startling Victoria and she spills coffee on her shirt. (FYI - in the past he'd been late to meetings)


The morning sun bounced off his tousled hair, picking up every highlight. His thumbs were hooked into the belt loops of his tight jeans, a grey t-shirt clung to his chest and didn't even try to pretend he wasn't staring at her breasts.
She shifted her gaze down. The cream silk was soaked through like a spring break wet t-shirt contest.
His stance stayed perfectly relaxed like he practiced it in front of a mirror, but his stare lethal as his gaze met hers. She knew she was supposed to say something and blurted the first thing that came to her mind. “You’re early.”
“I would say I arrived just in time.”

Friday, May 20, 2011

The Art of Verbal Seduction - Act 1 - 5/20/11


I love Shakespeare so when Daedalus Books offered Shakespeare and the Art of Verbal Seduction for a mere 3.98 - I ordered it immediately - then it sat on the shelf - until today when bored out of mind from being on medical leave for 4 weeks I strarted to flip thru it.

I thought I'd share some of my favorites as I go through the book hence the Act 1 - clever right? LOL

From All's Well That Ends Well:

1. Are you meditating on virginity?

2. {You're} a fair creature

From Anthony and Cleopatra:

3. Come, you'll play with me sir?

4. Where hast thou been, my heart

From As You Like It:

5.What shall be our sport then?

6. Sit you down in gentleness.

7.The sight of lovers feedeth those in love.

From Cymbeline:

8. {You are} the fairest I have look'd upon

9. Come, here's my heart.

10. By Jupiter, an angel! or if not,
An earthly paragon! Behold divineness.

There is my top ten for this week - and I'm only on page 5 of the book!!!! Which was your favorite?

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 5/15/11


More from Love By Design....

Later that night, Victoria lay in bed wide-awake. Somehow his beach scent drifted upstairs or perhaps she was imagining it. She couldn’t believe she almost kissed him. What was she thinking? Sex - no, dirty sex -dirty sex that cleanses a woman of all that ails her. And Russ was just the man for the job.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 5/08/11 - I'm back


Okay I'm back - still not at full strength but here I am.

More from Love By Design. Here Victoria is at a get to know you lunch with her agent Ava and Russ (the temporary co-host replacement) Here, at their request he is giving them the lowdown on Aussie slang for dirty words.


"Okay, I've got one more - Australian kiss."
Victoria's eyebrows drew together in concentration, but she couldn't think beyond what it would be like to kiss him, Australian or otherwise.
"Come on think about it."
"Got me," said Ava.
"Me, too," admitted Victoria.
Russ' smile turned lethal. "It's a French kiss - down under."

Thursday, April 21, 2011

My own prescription for health is less paperwork and more running barefoot through the grass. ~Terri Guillemets

The above quote suits me I think but none-the-less I will be out of commission for the next two weeks or so.
No paperwork but will be in bed instead of running barefoot thru the grass - however my Kindle is loaded with books.

Here are some more quotes on health...

The greatest wealth is health. ~Virgil

Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint. ~Mark Twain

Diseases of the soul are more dangerous and more numerous than those of the body. ~Cicero


He who has health has hope; and he who has hope has everything. ~Arabic Proverb


“A man's health can be judged by which he takes two at a time - pills or stairs.”

See you in two weeks!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - 4/17/11

Sorry about skipping last Sunday and will be skipping next Sunday as well as I am having surgery...no worries -

Finally here are six from Russ' POV....

With Victoria doing a walkabout inside his brain, he had no idea what Brett had said.
As beautiful as a comic book vixen and just as dangerous, easily leading a man to his nefarious end. You’d think he would’ve learned the lesson taught to him only a month ago, sending him a half a world away to start over. Russ always thought of himself as a smart guy, but one look at Victoria had dropped his IQ by a third and him behaving like the bad boy the Australian press made him out to be.
Not that he was a saint, but he would never leave a woman at the altar because he’d never agree to arrive there in the first place, just the word sent a shiver down his spine. To him, altar was synonymous with sacrifice, with his balls offered up to the matrimonial gods.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Who said - “I want women to be liberated and still be able to have a nice ass and shake it” ??



Shirley MacLaine that's who. She was interviewed on Oprah today so I had one of Oprah's 'ah hah' moments and knew Shirley would be the next in my quotes of famous women series (which used to be the starlet quote series)

Do you remember the scene in Terms Of Endearment (which she won an Oscar for) where she screams at the nurses to give her daughter a shot for pain? I hadn't but they replayed it on the show and WOW.

Here are some more quotes from her...

"Fear makes strangers of people who would be friends.” Shirley MacLaine

"I think of life itself now as a wonderful play that I've written for myself, and so my purpose is to have the utmost fun playing my part.” Shirley MacLaine

"Dwelling on the negative simply contributes to its power” Shirley MacLaine

"It's useless to hold a person to anything he says while he's in love, drunk, or running for office.” Shirley MacLaine

"The best way to get husbands to do something is to suggest that perhaps they are too old to do it.” Shirley MacLaine

"The person who knows how to laugh at himself will never cease to be amused." Shirley MacLain

Friday, April 8, 2011

A dream which is not interpreted is like a letter which is not read - The Talmud



The stuff dreams are made of...

Have you ever had a dream so vivid that it stuck with you, made you think, even helped make a decision? I did a few days ago. Before I had gone to bed I had 2 files up on my computer - the young adult and the women's fiction I've been working on - I was fiddling around with both - still not sure which one I wanted to work on, I ended up not working at all - then I went to bed.....

and had many strange dreams - flittering from one image to another as dreams often do - BUT it ended in a scene that was so peaceful and grounded in reality- here is what happen...

I'm sitting at a picnic table - the light is soft and there is a nip in the air - I'm painting a close up of a white rose with Beyonce (yes Beyonce) and w/o looking at me she says, "What's the matter, Liz? You haven't been yourself." I say, "I feel out of sorts." She looks at me and says, "Well get yourself sorted out." We simply went back to painting... and I woke up

And knew I had to work on the women's fiction. Why? Because visions of the Virgin Mary will play a large part in the book.

Further investigations on dream interpretations prove me right.

A white rose could mean: spiritual love and purity / holy or cosmic love / a new beginning / making peace w/someone
It is also the flower of the Virgin Mary

To dream about painting could mean: symbolizes your need to express your creative potential / points to a change or a need to change

Okay so you might be wondering why Beyonce? So was I - I like her but I'm not a huge fan and she hasn't been in the news lately - no new album - so why her? I looked up what the name Beyonce means and.... drum roll please....

...she who is beyond all others .... sounds a lot like the Virgin Mary to me!

I hope I have more dreams like this!
So one more quote about dreams...
"Dreams are illustrations from the book your soul is writing about you." Marsha Norman

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Although the world is full of suffering, it is full also of the overcoming of it - Helen Keller


(from wikipedia) Helen Adams Keller (June 27, 1880 – June 1, 1968) was an American author, political activist, and lecturer. She was the first deaf/blind person to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree.[1][2] The story of how Keller's teacher, Anne Sullivan, broke through the isolation imposed by a near complete lack of language, allowing the girl to blossom as she learned to communicate, has become widely known through the dramatic depictions of the play and film The Miracle Worker

I remember going to see the movie and being totally amazed! Still am!

Here are some quotes from Helen Keller....

I long to accomplish a great and noble task, but it is my chief duty to accomplish small tasks as if they were great and noble.
-- Helen Keller


The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched. They must be felt within the heart.
-- Helen Keller

When we do the best that we can, we never know what miracle is wrought in our life, or in the life of another.
-- Helen Keller

One can never consent to creep when one feels an impulse to soar.
-- Helen Keller


What we have once enjoyed we can never lose. All that we love deeply becomes a part of us.
-- Helen Keller

Which is your favorite?