February 25, 2007

Chugging along

I've been doing a BIAW this week with RWA. I don't think I'm going to quite make the 10k I was aiming for but I'm telling myself that's because of the second lot of notes from Miriam on Wolf that lobbed into my inbox on Saturday morning.

All very good notes and actually, very helpful with some of the book two stuff, but that was Saturday morning. Have lobbed them back and am now waiting to see. I guess if she's happy we move on to the actual trying to sell bit. Which is a kind of strange concept when you've been working with category and doing all the submitting yourself. Someone else is now doing that for me. And not just any someone but a superior, savvy whiz of an agent, industry professional type. Yay!

Anyway, I think I'll get to somewhere between 8-9k which has pushed me over the 50 page mark on number two. Still early days but enough is going on that I might actually have to sit down and do some sort of rough synopsis to try and figure some stuff out. I'm not a plotter but I do sometimes write a vague synopsis at some point (generally when I'm submitting something as an unfinished partial or to a comp which needs one). Like practically every writer on the planet I hate writing them but sometimes it does help sort some stuff out in brain. Of course, sometimes it doesn't. And the book never quite turns out the same as the synopsis but that's part of the fun.

Apart from that the weekend has been quiet. A friend's housewarming bbq last night where it was actually COOL and a bit of treasurer stuff. Now I'm off to grocery shopping (oh my life, it's a thrill ride) because tonight is McDreamy night and I must be all organised by 8.30.

And for those who don't know who McDreamy is (I'm sure there are a few people on the planet who don't, though I don't know why ; ) ), here's a taste. He's kind of close to my idea of my hero in the Wolf books. Not quite but in the ballpark. And a pretty fine ball park it is.

And I think Nic had this pic on her blog originally, so obviously great minds think alike : )

February 23, 2007

Zokutou, where are you?

Anyone know what the deal is with Zokutou? I need my word count meter, darn it. Call me a virgo but I like seeing the little bar zoom along.

Or anyone know another pretty progress bar site? Pout.

A couple of mac toys: Think (which will blank out all apps but one, allowing you to concentrate on that one app) and Scrivener (a writing tool that looks kind of cool though I'm only just starting to play).

That's about it for me. It's hot. Off to write and keep writing the list of the approximately forty billion places I need to change my email address with due to imminent ISP change.

February 21, 2007

Not much to report

Working. Writing. House rocks. So do Keri's books.

More later.

February 19, 2007

Hard work and good news

We're back. Lots of working, lots of talking, lots of eating, not so much sleeping. Your standard confab of writers. Sydney was lovely if humid.

I woke up after not quite enough sleep to find out the Wolf has finalled in the specialized category of the Great Expectations comp : ). Even to make things better the VT has finalled in the YA category!

And the day job has been obliging and agreed to me taking leave to go to RWA national in Dallas in July!! My first US conference - I can't wait. But I refuse to work out how many sleeps to go just yet.

Now all I need to do is some BIAW words...

February 15, 2007

Sometimes it makes you wonder

I'm working at home today. Because there's meant to be an electrician coming. But apparently maybe now, that won't happen. Sigh.

Why do I need an electrician you ask? Well, because while I was being an environmentally responsible homeowner and putting more low energy bulbs in my lights, one of the fittings broke. Not the outside easy bit but the inside, hold-the-bulb-in bit. So my cost saving measures will cost me about $100 to fix. I suspect, somehow, that the universe is laughing at me.

In other news, Hugh Jackman, Johnny Depp, Nathan Fillion et al failed to show up on my doorstep with buckets of red roses yesterday for Valentine's Day. I'm sure they just got lost : ). Hope y'all out there are celebrating (or did celebrate for us Aussies) with your hottie of choice. For me, that was Hugh Laurie on House.

Off to the annual RWAustralia committee meeting this weekend, so blogging shall be scarce. I'll be carting my Alphie to try and keep the pages ticking over. Have fun!

February 12, 2007

The postman cometh

Well, as my mailman finally brought me a lovely envelope containing my agency agreement today, I guess it is all real, I can stop having paranoid visions of my mail ending up in Timbuktu, and this is not a dream : )

I'm very thrilled to announce that Agent X has a name and it's Miriam Kriss of the Irene Goodman Literary Agency. Miriam is a fabulous agent (as Keri will attest), with a great track record for debut authors and the agency is a fabulous agency so I'm completely over the moon.

Here's Miriam's bio from the agency website:

Miriam Kriss joined the Irene Goodman Literary Agency just as she was finishing her master’s degree in Fine Arts at New York University, and quickly became one of the hottest young agents in town. Going from Michelangelo to Nora Roberts was not as great a leap as it might seem, as Miriam had been obsessively reading commercial fiction since she found a copy of Judith McNaught’s classic Whitney, My Love in a rented lakeside cabin when she was thirteen. A few pages in, not only were some gaps in her Catholic school education filled, but she was hooked. She reads fast: one hundred pages an hour, a novel a day, and well, that adds up to a lot of books a year. She is thrilled to be working with Irene Goodman, to whom she refers as “legendary”, and while Irene knows the market because she’s been doing this for twenty-five years and is savvy as all get out, Miriam knows the market because she is the market. Sales to major publishers include a recent mid-six-figure deal for a first-time author, and her client list continues to grow. Her first solo sale, also from a first-time author, hit several bestseller lists in its first week out. What’s more, now that reading is legitimately “work”, she devours two or three novels and manuscripts a day.

I met Miriam at the Romance Writers of Australia conference last year. Through several late night wine and chocolate fuelled chats with her and Keri, I found out she's one of the few people I've met who reads faster (and more) than me (a stellar quality in an agent), she loves her job (another stellar quality in an agent), she really knows her stuff when it comes to fantasy, publishing and the whole ball of wax and she geeks out over a lot of the same stuff as me (a general stellar personal quality ; ) ). And as an added bonus she likes my writing!

All that remains now is for me to keep writing while she gets on with the business of finding Wolf a home. Which could take anywhere from weeks to months or longer so I'm trying not to think about it. Let's see how well that works!

February 11, 2007


In case you were wondering, this is what a bunch of romance writers look like hyped up on good food, good conversation and good news : )

Here's hoping we have lots more reasons for nights like these this year!

February 09, 2007

In other news

That Keri, she is rocking hard again! Check her out!

I dub her writing goddess.

Ms Keri, hope you're rewarding yourself with something good. And chocolate and bubbles, natch.

PS he he he, my friend is on the NYT list

February 06, 2007

2, down 78 to go

So I'm slowly getting into Wolf 2. Still trying to re-orient myself in the heroine's head and the world and see what the plot holds in store. Looking at the progress bar is always kind of depressing at the start of a book.

One hundred thousand words is a lot. Most people freak at the idea of writing a couple of thousand. I tell myself write 5 pages, repeat 80 times and you have a book. But it's not quite that simple. During those repetitions you've gotta somehow hold a world in your head and make a plot hang together and world build and establish characters and keep the story interesting. Simple? Not always. Not when you know there are interested parties at the other end of the process. But I've written for interested parties before and writing for interested parties is part of the biz. And what I've learned is, you still have to write for yourself, love the story yourself. Or one hundred thousand words could feel very long indeed.

But none of this is stuff to worry about in a first draft. First drafts are for discovery. For playing. This is the first time I'm deliberately writing a sequel rather than just having the story maybe have some familiar characters but focusing on different protagonists. So it's new territory. And the first one was a gift book, one that flowed easily and fast for the vast part. Even the revisions have been relatively straightforward. I'm not expecting this one to be the same. Those books only come along once in a while.

So I have to focus on the little steps. Having fun and knocking over five pages at a time. 2 down. 78 to go.

February 05, 2007

The sound of a book

Given that I've finished the revisions that my agent (!!) wants on Wolf, I'm now turning attention to the second book. I have the opening scene which I wrote a few weeks ago. Now I have to launch myself back into the story world. Which I'm quite looking forward to, I like my heroine, it's fun to be in her head.

One of the first things I do when I start a book is put together a soundtrack. Sometimes it's one cd, but usually, especially since I got my iPod, it's a mix. Songs for mood, songs for particular characters or scenes, songs that just trigger something. The first batch of songs is pure instinct. I troll through my iTunes libary, letting the girls pick stuff. I know one song in particular has something to do with the central story line but some of the other choices are surprising. Different to book one. Which makes sense. They're in a different place now. I'll see how it writes, then add or subtract, move the order around if I need to. Then I'll listen to it over and over. Till it becomes almost background noise but still gives me the feel I need.

Then I'll have an instant way of plugging myself into the world whenever I need to. All I need is headphones and a little white gadget (we love Apple!). How cool is that?

February 04, 2007

More changes

And now, this is more like it.

The Psycho one was good and using it was a lesson in quick and dirty editing but I decided two columns was more what I wanted. So back to a blogger template and apply the lessons learned from Psycho. Voila.

This one can stay awhile.

February 03, 2007

A change is as good...

As you can see I've had a bit of an template change. I was inspired by the VT (who has a blog now and also cunningly found Psycho which makes the template thing easy!).

It's still a work in progress so stay tuned....I'd like to make the middle column wider for a start.

But now, there's revising to be done.


I alluded to some very good stuff in my last post.

So here's a bit of an update. I have an AGENT! A fantastic, fabulous agent.

In fact, pretty much my dream agent!!!

I've been walking around for a week now, pinching myself and re-reading the emails from her to know it's not a dream but given we've just had our second phone conversation (at the moment our email seems to be playing a not so fun little game called 'every now and then we'll just mysteriously disappear into the ether' - stern words will be had with my ISP shortly) and she didn't seem to have forgotten who I am : 0, it is apparently all true.

For now, I'll call her Agent X, there's still the legal stuff to be done, but I'm pretty excited (and have now crowned myself queen of the understatement). She's smart, she's good, she likes my stuff! And she'll be championing the wolf book into the wide world of publishing.

Let the games begin!