Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Recommended Reading: START ME UP!

Here's something I haven't done at the blog in a long time...recommended a book! I could not let today go by without sending a major shout out to my friend Victoria Dahl. The second book in her Tumble Creek series, START ME UP, hits stores today!

For any of you out there who read her first contemporary novel, TALK ME DOWN, or any of her wonderful historicals, you know Victoria has more spice in her stories than a bowl of gumbo. And her heroes are just as tasty. I can promise you'll find more of the same in START ME UP.

So, if you're in the mood for a fun, sexy, and very spicy read, do yourself a favor and buy this series! You will not be disappointed. Just make sure you read them in order.

Congrats on the new release, Victoria!

Friday, June 19, 2009

For The Writer

This is for all my blog readers who are also writers. And, well, those readers out there who maybe have interests in different aspects of novel writing. I just ran across a fabulous Writing Advice Database at literary agent Nathan Bransford's blog. It's a categorized list of past posts he's done on craft and the industry.

I hop over to his blog ever so often because I love his easy writing style, and his posts are always so interesting. I'm sure there's one of two tidbits you can glean from all this great info.


Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Does swag really sway?

A couple of years ago, while working in the film industry, I learned a new term: Swag. It's the stuff more commonly referred to as promo items. Those great little goodies designed to put a company's logo in front of as many people as possible.

But does swag really sway readers?

I've bought my fair share over the past couple of years. From pens to bookmarks to these super cute calculator key chains with my name and website proudly displayed. Cute as they may be, I still wonder if I've wasted my precious dollars?

In my overactive imagination, I envision a reader in the grocery store using my pen to check off items on her grocery list. She stops. Looks at her Farrah Rochon pen, and realizes she needs to head to the book section asap so she can pick up the latest Farrah Rochon novel.

Does that really happen? Probably not. To confess, the only promo item that's ever convinced me to buy a book was a bookmark. And that's because the author was blessed with a great cover and had the entire back cover blurb on the bookmark. I've never bought a book because of a pen, or a cute button, or a hot pink jar opener.

Will that stop me from handing out cute swag items? Probably not.

So, has anyone been swayed by swag? If so, what was it? Don't limit it to books. Has any company's promotional items convinced you to try their product?

Monday, June 08, 2009

The Practical Side of Writing

Join me over at the Readers' Rooms today as I discuss The Practical Side of Writing. It's not all sunshine and roses, folks.


Wednesday, June 03, 2009

A Library or a Night Club?

I write to you from a work table inside the fancy new library that just opened here in my part of Austin. I've been anticipating it's grand opening for the past few months. I even bought myself a cute little netbook (will blog about that later) so I can easily come over to the library and grab a couple hours of writing time in the afternoons.

Too bad the new library is more like a social club.

Just when did it become acceptable to talk--loudly, I might add--in the library? Libraries have always been quite places. If you had to talk, you did so in a hushed voice. People respected those rules, and it made for a nice, quiet time for everyone.

That's not today's library. Today's library has gathering spaces to encourage conversation, along with fancy coffee machines. If I wanted fancy coffee and plush seating, I'd head over to the Starbucks down the street.

There are no private study rooms, just these round tables you're forced to share with other people who spend hours watching videos on YouTube and laughing obnoxiously loud (though the guy across from me probably doesn't realize how much his laugh is grating on my nerves since he has on earphones and most likely can't hear himself).

I want the nice, quiet libraries of yesteryear. Please, bring them back!