Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Look What I Found Near My Front Door!

Yep...those are my author's copies of my soon-to-be-released paperback edition of A Little Slice of Heaven. Talk about a surprise! I wasn't expecting them for at least another two weeks. Guess it's time to set up a few booksignings, huh? No excuse now.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Hey! Guess What?

I won the Long and Short of It's Best Book of the Week Poll! And I get to post this super-neato button on my website:

How's your week going so far?

Sunday, September 28, 2008

It's Dexter Night!

Those who've followed this blog for a while know about my passion for the Showtime series, Dexter. It started, as these things usually do for me, with a book. A few years ago, Darkly Dreaming Dexter was just another in a long line of books on my TBR list. I think I read the book in about three hours. I fell in love with the serial killer/Miami Police blood spatter expert's quirky sense of humor and skewed but understandable thirst for honor. Then I let the story sit in my subconscious for a while before picking it up and reading it again, this time appreciating all the subtle nuances I'd missed the first time around. Then I passed it around to others to read. And my obsession was born. Once I learned about the series on Showtime, I counted the days until the premiere episode, watched (almost without blinking) and was thoroughly hooked.
While Season I on Showtime closely followed the book, Season II diverged dramatically. So for those who don't know about All Things Dex (shame on you!), let's recap last season. Dexter barely escaped arrest as the Bay Harbor Butcher, managed to frame poor Sgt. Doakes as the serial killer. Doakes was killed by the creepy Lila, who met her own end at Dexter's hand, thanks to Harry's code about only killing bad people. (Confused yet?) Dex's sister, Debra, had a brief affair with the FBI agent assigned to assist in the Bay Harbor Butcher case, but is now picking up the pieces of her broken heart...again. Poor Deb--always looking for love in the wrong places.
Tonight, we'll add a new character, D.A. Miguel Prado, played by Jimmy Smits.
So, grab some popcorn and settle in with the family for another terrific season. Okay...it's definitely not for the faint of heart. But if your family's anything like mine, they're going to love it!

Friday, September 26, 2008

And the Hits Just Keep on Comin'!

I just received notice about a new review for A Little Slice of Heaven, this time from the Long and Short of It Review site. The first sentence says it all. "I just loved this story." And Hibiscus ended her review with, "If you're a fan of sweet, clever romance, you won't want to miss A Little Slice of Heaven."

And don't forget to keep an eye on the progress bar for my latest WIP. It keeps going up.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Scents of the Season

On my way home from work today, I stopped at the supermarket to pick up a few things for dinner. When I walked through the automatic doors, the scents of spice, pumpkin, and apples perked me right up. Each season has its benefits, I know. But autumn, with the tangy odors of cinnamon and nutmeg, cooler temps, colorful leaves, and the promise of hearty dinners before a crackling fire holds a special place in my writer's heart.

There's so much for your senses to absorb, I sometimes wonder if we lie dormant through the summer and only awaken at the first snap of cool air. In the Ardito household, there's already a pot of homemade chicken soup simmering on the stove. Later in the week, I'll start baking muffins and pies.

Football's in full swing.

The lovely and generous Bertrice Small will host her annual outing for the LIRW--this time to some local wineries.

And of course, it's time to crawl into the attic to pull out the long sleeve shirts and fall jackets.

What's your favorite part about autumn?

Saturday, September 20, 2008

I'm So Excited!

Today's LIRW meeting will feature members of the Long Island Paranormal Investigators group. This coincides beautifully with my current wip's plot line. Of course, that had ab-so-lute-ly nothing to do with why I booked them! And of course, my horoscope plays right into today's planned activities:

Group activities are much more rewarding to you than anything you can do on your own today. If nothing is on the agenda, ring up some folks and make something fun happen spontaneously!

Tomorrow is Game 2 of Wildcats Football Season. Go Team White: No Bark, All Bite!

Friday, September 19, 2008

I'll be at PASIC today

As of about 8 a.m. EST, I'll be guest blogging at PASIC's 2BRead blog. Stop on by and tell me what you think about The Art of Self-Sabotage.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

To Dream the Impossible Dream

Thanks to coffee-gal-pal and perpetual roomie, Debora, I remembered that I booked an agent appointment at next month's Put Your Heart in a Book Conference hosted by the New Jersey Romance Writers (stay tuned for details and observations as they occur!)

Wouldn't it be great if I could pitch my current masterpiece at this event? Well...yeah. Except I'm only about one-third of the way through the manuscript. What's a writer to do?


That's right, kids. I plan on writing as much as I can to be as close as possible to the end before the conference at the end of October. Help keep me honest by checking my sidebar to watch my progress every day and cheer me on. I can use all the support I can get!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

The Kick A$$ Characters Workshop

Kick A$$ Characters By Authors Who Know How To Kick A$$

September 12-13 at Romance Divas


Bob Mayer

Lori Avocato

Maggie Price

Lindsay McKenna

Barry Eisler

Linnea Sinclair

Larissa Ione

Merline Lovelace

Want to know how to write authentic action, suspense, law enforcement, and military romance? Ask authors who know firsthand! Romance Divas is hosting a 2-day workshop with some of the hottest names in the genre. It will take place at the Romance Diva Forum. All are welcome. To get access to the forum you will need to register by entering the site and clicking on Forum.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

What's All the Fuss About?

Is there a prerequisite that all "literary" novels must leave a reader baffled? Because to be honest, I've read quite a few in the last few months and constantly walk away, shaking my head and wondering what I missed. I have noticed some bizarre patterns in the stories I've read. See if any of these are familiar to you. Here's a list of rules I've come away with:

1. In a literary novel, characters can screw around with evidence at a crime scene and get away with it. This seems to occur often--from the husband who cleans up the glass of scotch he threw at his dead wife (even living in the house with his family while the police are still investigating the murder), to the child who runs away with a crucial bit of evidence and hides it for years afterward,to the parent who burns bloody clothes. It seems that as long as they're "protecting" a loved one, characters can get away with...well...clues to murder. And the police never suspect anything.

2. In a literary novel, at least one endearing character should die horribly. Preferably a main character, and preferably toward the end of the book. Generally suicide, but murder works. As does a horrific car accident just when all seems right in the victim's world.

3. In a literary novel, the ending should leave the reader bereft. Suicide, rape, unsolved murder, unrequited love, the more bitter the ending the better...apparently.

4. In a literary novel, the romance is predictable but makes no sense and has no redeeming quality. It seems to me that the romance in these types of novels always occurs between two single people who may have lived in the same small town for years, but never met until the driving incident at the beginning of the story. Even if their careers should have intersected a dozen times before! And the romance isn't crucial to the story at all. In fact, in most cases, the story would be better without these two people falling into bed due to some contrived circumstance.

5. In a literary novel, children and teenagers act with more maturity than the adults. You know how, in sitcoms, the kids always have the wisecracks and get all the best lines? Well...in the literary novels I've read, these kids have the wisdom their adult counterparts lack.

Personally, I'm running back to my romance novels for some sanity and happiness in my reading world. While the occasional thought-provoking pot boiler is an interesting detour, I can't see myself ever putting down roots in such a world.