Monday, December 31, 2007

Cold Front Coming

...which means I'll have to take care of the three P's: cover the plants and protect the pipes (the pet's smart enough to come in and snuggle on her own). The only plants I'm worried about are the impatiens, since I brought the ferns onto the porch and they should be warm enough next to the house. It's a shame, too, 'cause the impatiens are all abloom.

As a good Floridian I also feel compelled to apologize to my house guest who's coming in tomorrow from Canada. One doesn't expect to find lows in the 20'sF and highs in the 40'sF on one's Florida vacation. Ah well, it will be back in the 70's by Sunday.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

There's a great spoof of romance blogs and the world of romance small press publishers here at "C'um Hither Global Blog"(No, that's not a typo. At least, not my typo).

I don't know who these folks are, but they're amusing.

Monday, December 24, 2007

I'm reading another amazing history, The War for All the Oceans. I'm enjoying it so much I think I'll buy myself a copy, since the public library is rather sticky about people keeping their books for years on end.

I have to say that one of the best perks of being a published author is getting to write research books off of my taxes. My naval history shelves have grown tremendously, and I enjoy having the freedom to pull a book off my shelf instead of waiting for it to show up again at the library.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Free Rice is addictive. I made it to Level 50 yesterday. My son, who used to be in my will, said it's because I'm such an old bat it's given me decades to improve my vocabulary. I said it's because of all the historicals I read.

Of course, I didn't get any writing done while I was playing, but I was feeding the hungry!

Sunday, December 16, 2007


I went to Amazon.de today and got an exciting holiday gift, a first glimpse at the cover of Rache Und Rosen (Revenge and Roses, aka Pirate's Price).

I love these German editions! The covers are classy and the titles are euphonious! It doesn't get much better than that.

According to Amazon, the book has a June 2008 release date. Just in time for all the Europeans winging their way to the US to spend their summer holidays at Disney.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Out of nowhere today the idea came to me that the way I can end my WIP is at the Battle of New Orleans. After all, my hero is an American pirate, so what better way to build up to a rousing finish than to have him participate in this pivotal event of the War of 1812?

I know the common wisdom is that the BoNO wasn't necessary because the war was officially over, but I've read enough histories of the event to side with those who say that had the British won that battle, they would have kept their foothold in the US at the base of the Mississippi. Who would have dislodged them?

I read an excellent history last year of the battle and its key players. Two men who were poles apart in their lives came together in New Orleans because they knew they needed one another to win the war. If you'd like to read more, I recommend to you Winston Groom's Patriotic Fire--Andrew Jackson and Jean Laffite at the Battle of New Orleans.

And in the meantime, I'll go back to figuring out how my pirate ends up involved in all of this.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

I made the mistake today of picking up my special edition (25th Anniversary, with bonus "Buttercup's Baby" chapter) of The Princess Bride. Somewhere in the house is my paperback copy, the copy I bought in 1973 because I saw the cover and it looked interesting, but it may be in my son's room because I insisted they each read The Princess Bride.

Picking it up again was a mistake. Before I knew it, I was reading about Buttercup and Westley's first kiss, and the sword fight on the cliffs.

And then I wanted to burn my keyboard. But instead I gritted my teeth and went back to my WIP, because my job isn't to write like William Goldman, or Nora Roberts, or William Shakespeare, my job is to write the best romance novel that Darlene Marshall is capable of writing.

But in closing, let me just say that if you've only seen the movie, wonderful as it is, you owe it to yourself to read the book. The book is...well, I'd say it's "inconceivable", but we all know that's not what that word means.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

I think I just found my new sig line:

"...They're not just about naked pirates, although what's wrong with a naked pirate now and again?"

Nora Roberts in Time Magazine, discussing why people should read romance novels.