Honesty is the best policy. But insanity is a better defense.

Hope you’re all having a fantastic week. Mine has been filled with nothing but crazy. Kids, writing, doctors … etc.

Anyway, on to business. There are 9 topics below. Respond to whatever tickles your fancy. Ignore the rest.



Five years ago, author Lisa Valdez took the publishing world by storm with her sizzling historical romance novel, Passion. Unprecedented controversy surrounded the book and many readers were decidedly split.  However, once the dust settled, the author sorta went into seclusion and the release date for the sequel (Patience) was rescheduled many times.  So many, a lot of fans grew impatient, if not downright angry.  As a result, when yet another release date was announced (April 6), it too was met with cynicism.


Well, guess what?  Patience is finally here and from what I’ve heard, this novel is just as hot as its predecessor, only this time, the story revolves around a BDSM relationship between the hero and heroine. While I’m not into Doms and Subs, Valdez is such an exceptional writer, that I’m going to give the book a chance. Dear Author panned it (Grade: D), but AAR gave it a thumbs up (Grade: B).  So, like Passion, it appears that Patience is a book you’ll either love or hate.



Mixed reviews aren’t the only problem plaguing Patience, by Lisa Valdez. It seems there’s a tiff between Amazon and Penguin Books that’s affecting every Penguin author. It’s all about Kindle and e-book pricing.  In short, you can’t buy Kindle editions of Penguin books because the “adults” are fighting.

Jim Butcher had this on his website:

“Amazon and Penguin are bickering, and the Kindle edition of “Changes” has been caught up in the crossfire. Fans around the world are getting email notifications from Amazon that their “Changes” preorders have been canceled.”

Needless to say, readers are royally pissed, particularly this Lisa Valdez fan:

Posted in a thread on Amazon:

5 years…. and counting???
I’ll believe it when I actually have a physical copy in my hands (Walmart or Borders, here I come.). I, too, was planning to purchase the Kindle version, but I didn’t want to jinx it – I have “pre-ordered” “Patience” every single time Amazon has offered it… and every single time it’s been pulled. To be completely honest, I’m thinking it’s gonna get pulled AGAIN which really doesn’t surprise me – what does surprise me is the Ms. Valdez’s attitude. She seems to care (see posts above), yet at the same time she doesn’t seem to want the money which ultimately means LET the customer BUY it, right?”

For the record, Ms. Valdez wasn’t even aware of the Kindle situation until another fan who’d pre-ordered the Kindle edition sent her an email complaining that her e-book purchase had been canceled.  Also, Ms. Valdez has NO say-so in this war between Amazon and her publisher.  No Penguin author does.

Here’s a copy of Amazon’s letter to Valdez’s fan:

Hello from Amazon.com,
We’re writing to let you know that we’ve canceled your order for Patience because it will not be released by the publisher in Kindle format on Tuesday, April 6th, 2010 as previously expected. We don’t yet have a date for when this item will be released for Kindle. We will send you an email notifying you when the Kindle edition becomes available. The print edition is sometimes not an ideal substitute; nevertheless, we have decided to offer the print edition of this title at an exceptionally low price to partially compensate for this inconvenience.

Now here’s Ms. Valdez’s response to her fan:

Dear Ann,
I have absolutely nothing to do with the current rift between Amazon and Penguin. I have no say, no power and wasn’t even informed that this would happen. I deeply regret that this has happened and, as an author who has many Kindle readers, I assure you that I am equally disappointed and frustrated.
I have forwarded your email to my editor.
All my regrets,

You know, I wish these execs would get their crap together.  Authors and readers are the ones suffering because of these stupid corporate wars.

Gordon Gekko was wrong.  Greed is NOT good.



I got this hilarious pic from Mrs. Giggles.  Could this be why romance heroes never stray?


4. SPARKS 101

Cracked.com thinks they’ve got Nicholas Sparks figured out. Go read their take on How To Write A Nicholas Sparks Movie. It’s a hoot.


In a recent interview with USA Today, Nicholas Sparks criticized Shakespeare, Jane Austen, Ernest Hemingway, and romance novelists in general for essentially writing the same story over and over:
“(Romances) are all essentially the same story: You’ve got a woman, she’s down on her luck, she meets the handsome stranger who falls desperately in love with her, but he’s got these quirks, she must change him, and they have their conflicts, and then they end up happily ever after.”
But he claims that he is not a romance novelist. He is a fiction writer who writes love stories.  “You read a romance because you know what to expect. You read a love story because you don’t know what to expect.”

Earth to Nicholas: Hey dude, call yourself a fiction writer if you want, but you DO write romances, only yours don’t have HEAs. And BTW, romance novels are NOT all the same story. But you would know this if you actually read some of them. ;-)



New York Times columnist Randy Cohen had this to say to a reader who asked if it was ethical to illegally download a copy of a book (Stephen King’s Under the Dome) if she purchased it in hardcover first. His response created a firestorm of controversy:

“Your subsequent downloading is akin to buying a CD, then copying it to your iPod. Buying a book or a piece of music should be regarded as a license to enjoy it on any platform. Sadly, the anachronistic conventions of bookselling and copyright law lag the technology. Thus you’ve violated the publishing company’s legal right to control the distribution of its intellectual property, but you’ve done no harm or so little as to meet my threshold of acceptability.”

What say you?



What are your FIVE favorite cartoon movies? Mine are:

1. Beauty and the Beast
2. The Little Mermaid
3. Sleeping Beauty
4. Anastasia
5. Lion King

BTW, I didn’t care for The Princess and the Frog mainly because the interracial HUMAN hero and heroine both spent 90% of the movie as green AMPHIBIANS. They should’ve retitled it, Two Green Frogs, by those Spineless Hacks at Disney.

Um … that’s about all I’ll say on the matter because if I type any more, I’m bound to get into trouble. :shock:


7. YOU **HAVE** TO HEAR THIS!!!!!!!

The Taiwanese boy in this clip is being touted as the next Susan Boyle, however that’s not what makes him so unique. It’s who he sounds like that blows my socks off. And no, he doesn’t sound like Boyle. It’s somebody else, and you won’t believe your ears!



And now for your weekly dose of edible porn.



I picked this up at Edittorrent from a post titled, Marks of the amateur–It’s a list of 9 things newbies do, however I admit that while I’m not a newbie, I am guilty of at least one of these infractions.  You see, I use creative dialogue tags and I am totally unrepentant. ;-)

1. Improper dialogue formatting.

2. A whole lot of introductory participial phrases.

3. ….. more than one or two semicolons on the first couple pages?

4. Clumsy quote-tagging….. A bunch of “creative” quote tags– He intoned, she simpered, he ejaculated (I couldn’t help it, sorry!), she expostulated, she exclaimed, he temporized– indicates to me that the writer is more obsessed with the tags than with the actual thing being said by the speaker. [Tanya here: Okay, mine don’t go that far, but I do use ‘whispered,’ hissed,’ and ‘snapped.’ So sue me! LOL]

5. More than a couple homophone mistakes (then/than, here/hear, etc.).

6. Starting the passage with whatever the latest trend is– an unattributed line of dialogue, a “cute meet” and (this is important, because a good writer might do this and I’d like it) doing it badly.

7. Starting with odd stuff that we might put in the published edition, if we got that far, but shouldn’t be in a submission (acknowledgments, dedications, a history lesson).

8. Too many names in the first couple paragraphs. Who is the POV character? That’s the name we need.

9. POV shifts on the first page.

Can you think of any additional ones?