Friday, September 14, 2007

Covers and Curses and Close My Mouth

“Never regret. If it's good, it's wonderful. If it's bad, it's experience.” - Victoria Holt

I had the audacity to tell someone the other day that I was caught up enough to do something for them that needed doing quickly... I'm an idiot. Words like that invite disaster.

Yesterday I not only received the first round of edits on my cowboy story -- and they're TOUGH because there is a particular issue that needs to be changed, and all the incidences of it fixed throughout, along with regular editing stuff -- I also received the galleys to proofread for my Christmas story at TWRP called "The Christmas Curse". I also received the cover. What do you think?

The Christmas Curse --
For Molly Scott, everything bad in her life has happened during the Christmas season, from training bras in her stocking to being jilted by her fiancé. This year is no exception.

Ten days before Christmas, she arrives at work to find her department closed down and everyone laid off. Desperate, she takes a job for a singing telegram service and, dressed as Mrs. Claus, meets the man of her dreams--who turns out to be a nightmare--in a broken down elevator. The Christmas Curse is right on track.
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Last night, a friend of DH's was here to have his computer repaired (this poor guy -- I don't know what he does, but I see him about every six months for this!). He saw me typing away on the computer and asked if I was working. I said yes. He asked "where" I worked, assuming that I telecommuted to a "real" job. Ha. I said, "I work right here. I run a website and a write. I have a novel that will be available soon." I was proud and excited to say those words.

He was thrilled. It seems his wife is publishing a book -- she's a life coach (something I found moderately amusing, considering my quiz results from a few days ago) and is publishing a non-fiction books, self-help type. He wanted to talk publishing.

Then he did it: he asked what I wrote. And suddenly, I was flustered. His wife was important, doing important stuff, writing words that would change a person's life for the better.

I moderated and said, "I write fiction."

He didn't let me get away with that. "Oh? For what age group?" He knows I homeschool, so he must have assumed I was writing for children.

I gulped, feeling unaccountably uncomfortable. I didn't want to say the words and see him close up. I didn't want to have him judge me because I wrote "those" books. Finally though, I did it. "I write romance," I said. "So, I'm writing for adults."

"Oh." He nodded. "I wonder why your husband didn't tell me you wrote a book?" And he headed to the basement.

Actually, I'm surprised my DH didn't tell him. He tells everyone. I frequently find myself blindsided by folks I barely know saying, "So, I hear you wrote a book."

Still... after this conversation, I was so angry with myself. I'm proud of writing AND reading romance. I take on people every day who look down their noses at my choice of reading material. The woman who runs my library doesn't appreciate genre fiction as a whole, and refuses to buy trade paperbacks -- says they mess up the shelves and don't last as long, but that simple decree eliminates many romances I prefer to read. So, I request them. And because I am one of their best "customers", they are somewhat obligated to buy them. I proudly purchase my romances at various stores, I love that the UBS is more than half romance novels. Usually, I hold my head up high.

So, why was I so embarrassed to say what I wrote?

It kept me awake for some time, and even now I'm frustrated. I promise to make a concerted effort to maintain pride in my chosen genre and shame on me for last night's debacle.

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In Pillar Place: Monarch P2 we have three "J" pillars, and about four more who are hanging out on their roofs. Most of them who were up there yesterday came down and ate some more. A last meal? But last night when I checked, three of them were all webbed into the box (yes, they spin webs -- the strongest stuff... it's amazing) and this a.m. they are hanging from their tails.

Hurry, little pillars, hurry. I saw geese flying south overhead last night. Summer is over. You need to follow those geese soon!

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You Are Scissors

Sharp and brilliant, you can solve almost any problem with that big brain of yours.
People fear your cutting comments - and your wit is famous for being both funny and cruel.
Deep down, you tend to be in the middle of an emotional storm. Your own complexity disturbs you.
You are too smart for your own good. Slow down a little - or you're likely to hurt yourself.

You can cut a paper person down to pieces.

The only person who can ruin you is a rock person.

When you fight: You find your enemy's weak point and exploit it.

If someone makes you mad: You'll do everything you can to destroy their life


Ooh... I sound MEAN! Y'all scared yet?

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BTW, have you entered Diane's contest for your choice of an autographed book? If not, why? If yes, remember -- there's another chance (your LAST chance) to enter today.

And, have you entered the LASR contest for a free autographed book? Hurry up... today's the last day. While you're at it, take our poll.

And, Judy is giving away a $20 Amazon GC for the best caption on a picture she took. Go visit and caption the photo.

Happy Friday!

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Edited to add: From Allie -

I Need Your Votes!

Hey everyone, a little shameless promotion here: Ciar Cullen, a fellow Samhain author, is running a contest on her blog to select The Best Ebook of the Summer...and One Night in Boston is one of the choices.

Would you hop on over there and vote for me? Please? Ciar will buy and review the winning book...and a little more promo for ONIB wouldn't hurt any. Hey, if you feel like pimping the contest on your own blog, I'd love it even more :) Thanks a million.

Consider it done :-)

8 comments:

Ceri said...

Sadly you're not the only one. I've reacted that way before, downplaying what I do although I'm really proud of my work. What's so wrong with writing a good romance? Absolutely nothing.

Good luck with your overflowing plate. Mine is relatively empty, just editing on one wip at the moment. But that's not necessarily a good thing... it means I need something out there with a publisher, ready to hit the market.

Jen said...

Hey Marianne,
First off, I love the cover! I think it's darling and fits the bill nicely. Secondly, writing fiction changes lives more than any life coach writing of the moment. Think of how many lives were changed by reading Jane Eyre or P&P or a myriad others? Hold your head up, m'dear, you're doing wonderfully.

Also, stop by my blog today... I think you may find it useful for DD.

Julia said...

Hi Marianne - I just want to say your "The Christmas Curse" cover look fab! I think it great and that the blurb sound interesting enough :)

Don't let anyone bring you down just because you write romance. You should be proud :)

Tori Lennox said...

I had the audacity to tell someone the other day that I was caught up enough to do something for them that needed doing quickly... I'm an idiot. Words like that invite disaster.

No good deed goes unpunished. ;)

Oh no! I'm a Paper person!!!

You Are Paper
Crafty and creative, you are able to adapt freely to almost any situation.
People tend to underestimate you, unless they've truly seen what you are capable of.
Deep down, you're always scheming and thinking up new plans. Your mind is constantly active.
You are quite capable of anything you dream of. You can always figure out a way to get what you want.

You can wrap a rock person up in your sheet of trickery.

A scissor person can sneak up and cut you to pieces.

When you fight: No one can anticipate your next move

If someone makes you mad: You'll attack them mercilessly when they're unprepared

Brandy said...

Your cover looks cute! And the blurb sounds very interesting.
I am rock, btw and forgot to save the results! *G*

As for being embarassed? Don't. You are a creative and fun author, be proud!
Have a fantstic weekend.

Dru said...

I like your cover and the blurb. I'm putting this on my book list.

for what you do, you should be proud. I bet there's a whole lot of people who would love to write a book and they don't, but you do. Romance, gotta have those books and that's what you're doing.

You Are Rock

Powerful and overbearing, you intimidate people with your presence.

People know they can't push you around, and they respect that.
Deep down, you are calm, confident, and unmovable.
You take everything pretty seriously, and you think deeply about all aspects of your life.

You tend to feel smothered by paper people.

You don't mind crushing the spirit of a scissors person.

When you fight, you: Use all of your strength

If someone makes you mad: You're likely to throw something at them

Melissa said...

Marianne - Our books bring joy to readers' lives. Smiles when they're tired after a long day. Escape when something bad happens. I know this because I have fan mail that tells me what my book meant to them. I cherish those letters. Be proud of what you write. Not everyone can do this!

MaryF said...

Hugs on being flustered, then being frustrated with yourself. I've been there, too.