Some Wisdom from a Great One

August 16, 2016 at 10:59 am (Authors, Virtual Gems)

And no, I’m not talking about Wayne Gretzky. I’m talking about The Melissa Blue. (No, really–that’s her name, see?) And the woman drops hella knowledge, one such gem being this morning.

Check it out–


Now, I wanted to draw your attention to this for two reasons. The first is she’s absolutely right–do NOT compare your career to someone else’s. An ugly dark path does indeed await you and it can mess you the fuck up. So don’t. Just don’t.

But the second reason is she’s 100% right about the Catch-22. You grow and learn by doing it yourself, absolutely, but that doesn’t mean you ignore the help that is there in front of you. There are trailblazers, experts, and mavericks aplenty out there and why not take a look at what they did to see how, if at all, it fits you? It’d be crazy not to, but yeah, watch your step. The difference between sifting for gems and that nasty black pit of self-doubt is only a few degrees but the lingering effect is enormous. Just watch your step.

(For more awesome knowledge and seriously HAWT books, check out Melissa at her website, on Facebook or on Twitter.)


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Sliding into the finish–NaNoWriMo

November 30, 2015 at 6:14 pm (Authors, Creativity, Random Thoughts, Writing)

It’s November 30th. To many of you, that means you’re finishing NaNoWriMo, be it popping some celebratory beverage because you’ve already hit 50,000 words, or you’re still sprinting like a mother-fucker, aiming for that magic number anytime before 11:59 p.m. tonight. I am cheering you all on, if you wrote one word, or 50,001. More importantly, YOU should be cheering yourself, even if you didn’t get one of these:












Here’s why–you wrote. No, I’m serious–you wrote. That is something not everybody can or will do, and the fact that you sat down and wrote–one word or 50,001–means you deserve cheers, little certificates of awesomeness and every high-five in the world, so celebrate your writing no matter what your final word count is. And, I want to leave you with one final sentiment I read today (and sorry I didn’t get the author, because this is gold)–if you hit your goal, if you didn’t, keep writing. Your words don’t know what month it is.

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An Open Letter to Kristen “Needs a Warning Label” Callihan

February 16, 2012 at 9:06 am (Authors, Open Letter)

Dear Kristen,

     a) Thanks for nothing.

     b) You are so in trouble, young lady!

     c) You owe me, and then some.

     d) All of the above.

I know—you’re thinking, “Hey! What’s with all the bad vibes here? We haven’t even met for the love of Pete!” Well, let me tell you.

Lovely day yesterday. I took a half day from work and planned to hit the Macy’s President’s Day sale. First day of the sale—I’m bound to hit some sweet deals, right?


I get home, change into some power shopping clothes, and make a quick lunch for extra energy. I sit down to my turkey on wheat with Cheetos and diet Dr. Pepper and, rather than flip on the tv, grab a book I’d purchased on Saturday, still sitting on the entry table by my purse and keys.

Yes, it was FIRELIGHT. Your against-all-odds book.

Four hours later my husband’s walking in the door, asking how my shopping went and why am I sitting there reading in the dark. Your book sucked me in so hard and so fast that I eschewed a sale at Macy’s, curled up on the couch, and read until the sun went down.

 A sale at Macy’s! It’s hard for me to even think about it without weeping.

Real life took the evening hours, but Miri and Archer stayed in my head, giving me come-hither smiles and whispering enticing promises to come back. They were cajoling me, Kristen! Cajoling! Is that fair, I ask you? No, I think even you’ll agree it was not.

Yeah, you know what’s coming up, you dark and…and…cajoling scribe of potent words and lush images. I stayed up way too late, unable to put down your heady quicksand of a story until I’d drained every last word and let the essence linger on my tongue.

You want examples? Proof for your kangaroo court? Fine, I’ll give you proof!

  • Page 33—when we get a first taste of how much these two people were meant to be together and ache with them when their vulnerabilities are laid bare.
  • Page 138—yeah. Nothing more to say here.
  • Page 289—Archer’s impassioned declaration? Uh-huh. Yeah—I dare a jury to toss this one out.
  • Page 318—The (redacted) is your gift? (No, I’m not worried about spoilers, I just don’t want any other sucker with plans for the day to fall into the same trap I did. Save yourselves!) How could I not fall even harder for Archer with that, yearn for Miri to get the man she’s always needed?
  • Page 363—I double-dog dare you to hold this up to any court and see who doesn’t side with me. This was simply the most stunning and breathtaking scene I may have ever read.  

I could keep going, but it would just be a listing of page numbers—372 to be exact. I just can’t believe you give me one of the most darkly sensual stories I’ve ever read, combined with the lure of mystery and a supernatural bend, and didn’t insist that your publisher put a warning label on the front!

So, when I start bitching because I need more clothes for work or missed “the dress” I’m looking for for an upcoming wedding, or when my co-workers ask me why I’m so damn cranky today, ignoring their not-so-subtle whispers of maybe another gallon of Dr. Pepper might be in order, or—and let me remind you that you only brought this on yourself—when I start stalking you on Twitter and Facebook for any word, any hint, any promise of a new story, let me only say that it is all your fault.

From one bold enough to tell the truth,


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February 1st is Darynda Jones Day!

February 1, 2011 at 5:00 am (Authors, Events)


It’s here, it’s here!! The day I’ve been fluttering for, sputtering for, tingling, ringling and zingling for is here, here, HERE!! The debut novel of the wonderful, talented, hard-working, and lest we forget, stunningly beautiful redheaded Darynda Jones is being released. TODAY!!!

(I love this photo–she looks so casual, so fun, so much like your BFF. True story–I’ve never met her IRL (not for lack of trying in Orlando) but I just *know* she is as cool and nice as she looks in this photo.)

When Darynda won the 2009 Golden Heart for Best Paranormal Romance, she popped up onto my radar. I started following her (sounds so much nicer than stalking…) and when I heard the blurb to her fantasmagorical sounding book, FIRST GRAVE ON THE RIGHT, just totally fell in girl-love with her. And, obviously her agent (Alexandra Machinist) and editor (Jennifer Enderlin) thought so too, because Darynda sold in a 3-book pre-empt auction. (Read the story of how it happened here and I dare you not to squee as much as I did.)  

And today is the day. FIRST GRAVE ON THE RIGHT is released. Now. I am so dang excited I can’t stand it!! Here–read this and tell me you’re not just bursting in impatience to get this hardback honey in your hands right now!!!

A smashing, award-winning debut novel that introduces Charley Davidson: part-time private investigator and full-time grim reaper.

Charley sees dead people. That’s right, she sees dead people. And it’s her job to convince them to “go into the light.” But when these very dead people have died under less than ideal circumstances (i.e. murder), sometimes they want Charley to bring the bad guys to justice. Complicating matters are the intensely hot dreams she’s been having about an entity who has been following her all her life…and it turns out he might not be dead after all. In fact, he might be something else entirely.

So, do yourself a favor–forget the groundhog tomorrow, because let’s face it, if he sees his shadow tomorrow, most of you are going to want to make stew out of the poor furry creature–and buy this book. (Easy link here: Amazon) Trust me, once you crack page one, you won’t care if it’s winter, if Starbucks is giving away cards for lifetime coffee, or if Hugh Jackman walks by. That’s how good this woman writes.

The best part? SECOND GRAVE ON THE LEFT comes out in August, so you won’t have that long to wait to get more sweet and crunchy Darynda goodness. Yum-my!!

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Last Tuesday in October

October 27, 2009 at 9:45 am (Authors, Random Thoughts, Virtual Gems, Writing)

Hi, all! Just wanted to pop on to say thank you, thank you, thank you for all the wonderful cheering and support last week! I appreciated every last comment and happy thought and send such lovely writing thoughts back. You are all…

Had a fantastic weekend with all kinds of writing thoughts, and even though the cost was a small cold, I’m still doing great. My goal for this week is to really hit a stride so I can attack November (and my version of NaNoWriMo) head on. And, judging by all of the writing drums I hear in the jungle, you’re with me!

And, speaking of fabulous writing, don’t forget to pick up Anna Campbell’s Captive of Sin, out today! How’s that for no tricks, all treats?

Now, back to the writing, but before I go, a little smile for you. (And a big fat congrats for L.A.’s recent FastDraft success–here’s your reward, L.A.!)


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Marilyn Brant Week: The Epilogue

September 30, 2009 at 8:34 pm (Authors, Events)




Worth a thousand wonderful, exciting words.

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Marilyn Brant Week, Day 7: According to Jane

September 29, 2009 at 8:04 am (Authors)


“Now, it’s a truth universally acknowledged that a young woman in possession of an important date must be in want of a hot outfit.”

atj2Lord, ain’t that the truth? If somebody would have told me Pride and Prejudice could have such far-reaching insight, I probably would have tried to read it long ago. (Or at least much longer ago than last November.)

But, the very astute of you may cry out, that quote is not from Pride and Prejudice! Yes, it certainly sounds like an homage to the first line of that venerable classic, but was certainly not uttered from Saint Jane herself.

Okay, I may be entering heresy here, but I say it was uttered by somebody better—Marilyn Brant. Yes, that same goddess of this past week here at Pam Writes Romance and author of today’s release, According to Jane. I say better because as much as I’ve wanted to love P&P and have tried repeatedly to read it, I never sat down with a copy of it at 6:00 p.m. on a Saturday night and have it finished by 11:00 p.m. the next day.

Like I did with According to Jane.

I’ve never read about a relationship that made me wince in sympathy (I’m trying not to do this with a spoiler, but the scene with Ellie and Andrei in the car on the way back from the wedding? Yeah, if you’ve read it you know what I’m talking about, and if you haven’t, you soon will.) and literally made me want to crawl through the book and hug Ellie because I know what she’s going through.

Like I did with According to Jane.

And I have never been so pleasantly, delightfully surprised by a relationship as I have with Ellie and Sam—from high school English class, to that first awkward and bittersweet post-college meeting, to the last chapter, and everything in between. I couldn’t count on all of my fingers and toes the number of times I raised my eyebrows in surprise or made that little Ooh! sound of surprised delight.

Yes, like I did with According to Jane. 

You don’t have to love Jane Austen to love this book—heck, I think I’ve proven that—nor do you have to worry about anything that’s ever made you hesitant when hearing the term ‘women’s fiction.’ This is a sweet, delightful story, at times an aching reminder of what it’s like to lay your heart on the line, but knowing the risk is worth it. The only thing you’ll have to worry about when picking up a copy of According to Jane is wanting to immediately read it again.

Like I did.

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Marilyn Brant Week, Day 1: The Bon Jovi Story

September 22, 2009 at 9:18 am (Authors, Events)


Hear ye, hear ye! To celebrate the opening of Marilyn Brant week, we offer you something most amazing. So gather round, ye friends of Marilyn’s, and come hear the tale that she’s been yearning to hear, the true story of how her friend Pam got to sit front row at a Bon Jovi concert. It all began like this…


nce upon a time, in a village far, far away and a time not so long ago, there was a fair maid named Pamela. The fair maid was a fan of the troubadours Bon Jovi. This caused some minor consternations from the fair maid’s lawful mate, as he was not so much devoted, but he knew well before he had handfasted with the fair maid that she had a measure of big-hair headbanger in her blood, so peace was known in the land.

It came to be that the troubadours were to be traveling the land to sing their newest tunes, and offer for trade garments with images of the troubadours on the front, with the days of the calendar and towns the troubadours had visited on the back. Fair maid Pamela knew such a visit would be as a dream, and contented herself to sing loudly of the troubadours songs while driving her cart to market.

But lo! What news is this? The local town criers who announced the morning events had passes to the troubadour’s event, and they would give them to the deserving person who could answer their question when posed seven days hence. Our fair maid listened intently to the town criers the next of Monedæi, Tiwesday, Wednesdei, and Dunresdæg and paid most particular attention to the special words the town criers offered, writing them down on a precious scrap of birch bark. When Frigedæg came, fair maid Pamela ruthlessly beat out all of the other townsfolk to repeat back the special words to the town criers (Bounce, Tico, Runaway, and Dorothea) and was awarded the privelage of listening to the troubadours from the very front row.  Our fair maid was so excited she ran in to tell her mate, screaming so loudly and shrilly that the fair maid’s lawful mate thought she was either in physical distress or some loathesome knave had stormed into their cottage and threatened to steal their goats.

Come the day the troubadours visited, much excitement was felt by fair maid Pamela. Even the fair maid’s lawful mate was feeling the joy of the day, as he had been catching some the spirit of the day, as well as swept along in our fair maid’s fervor. Fair maid Pamela and her lawful mate traveled to the local town square, a place large enough to hold those who enjoyed the troubadours music and mingled with other townsfolk out to listen to the troubadours. Our fair maid’s lawful mate traded several chickens for a garmet with the troubadours’ image on it and offered it to his lady as a token of his love, and she was very touched by the gift. Thusly coiffed, our fair maid and her lawful mate received their crimson cuffs indiciating them able to be seated on the wooden benches nearest the troubadours and they settled in to listen to Goo Goo Dolls, guests of the troubadours, performing charming songs to please the crowd.

But lo! What trouble is this? Before the troubadours could appear, a large-boned village wench who had received the bench behind our fair maid and her lawful mate became vexed. She was most upset that her view of the troubadours’ tight-trousered lead songster might be blocked by the unusual height of our fair maid’s lawful mate. The wench, a large and formadable foe herself, offered veiled consequences to our fair maid’s lawful mate should he place himself between herself and the tight-trousered songster. To keep peace in the village, and knowing his fair maid was rightly and properly situated at her place at the fence between the benches and the troubadours, our fair maid’s lawful mate was content to keep seated at the bench during the songs of the troubadours. He did, however, keep a close eye on the wench, fearing she might possibly garrote him with her apron tie and crawl over his twitching body to offer herself to the tight-trousered troubadour. He was most concerned that this would be his fate during the special version of the song of the troubadours so named ‘Just Older’ and the wench behind him suddenly cried out in an emotional and overwrought tone,  “And I’m pretty, too!”

During the last several songs of the troubadours, our fair maid and her lawful mate decided that they would risk the freakishly large wench’s wrath and decided to stand together at the fence, singing and dancing along with the troubadours and their merry songs. A fine time was had by all and the fair maid and her lawful mate went on to live happily ever after.

JBJ(Picture of the troubadours as sketched by the fair maid from where she was sitting. Yes, she was that close to the tight-trousered songster.)

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Starting Tomorrow…

September 21, 2009 at 8:43 am (Authors, Events)


To celebrate the release of According to Jane on September 29th, tomorrow starts the tremendous, stupendous, most excellently fabulous MARILYN BRANT WEEK!









And to kick off the week in high style, I have a very special post I’ve been saving for just such an occasion. It has thrills, chills, star sightings, and even a possible murder. Trust me, you won’t want to miss it!









See you tomorrow!

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Five on Friday: The TBR pile

June 12, 2009 at 10:40 am (Authors, Five on Friday)

In my wonderings of what to write about, I was walking across my living room and a topic just seemed to jump out at me.

Really. It was a box of books I tripped over.

I’ve got some down time this summer, and like any good bookaphile, immediately started making a special TBR stack for this time. Now, there are some books in there I’ve read before (a few LaVyrle Spencer’s spring to mind), but there are also some others that I’ve either wanted to read for a while or have recently recommended been to me. So, without further ado and in no particular order, here are my top 5 Special TBR books:

1. Fragile Eternity by Melissa Marr  For those of you who have been here for a while, you know I’m a fan of Melissa and her amazing YA dark and tortured fairy series. This is the third book in the series and I’ve been practically drooling not to break it out sooner.

2. Turn Coat by Jim Butcher   I know Robin is hyperventilating at the thought I’ve been able to withstand temptation this long, but if this isn’t a book/author/series for some down time, I don’t know what or who is. (And Robin, there is hope for me yet. Keep reading.)

3. Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton   Here was my thought process on this one—loved the movie Timeline. Read the book and loved it. Always loved the movie Jurassic Park. Ergo, the book should be good, too, right? I’ll let you know later this summer.

4. Bridge of Birds by Barry Hughart   I saw this on Courtney Milan’s blog as a keeper shelf book of hers and it intrigued me. I’m hoping it’s as good as it sounds.

5. Midnight Pleasures by Eloisa James   I’ve been trying to find a copy of Eloisa’s debut, Potent Pleasures, but haven’t had much luck, so settled for her second book for now. She’s skyrocketed to being one of the heavy hitters of historical romance, and with her DNA, I’m dying to see how she writes. (I also have one of hers from her Duchess series, too.)


And, since this is a TBR 5 on Friday, I also thought I’d let you know about the last five I’ve read, so you can see my list stretching behind me as well as reaching before me.

1. White Night by Jim Butcher   See, Robin? I told you not to worry. To refresh myself for Turn Coat, I’m reading the past few in the Dresden Files. I love this one, but (***SPOILER ALERT***) think it’s sad Lash sacrifices herself. I liked her and the interaction she and Harry had.

2. Tempted by the Night by Elizabeth Boyle   This was the first Boyle I’ve read, and by this book, I’m going to be looking at many of her others, I’m sure. Great writing, wonderful and unexpected twist—I was hooked.

3. Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman   Two posts ago I mentioned I was halfway through this and, now that I’ve finished, can willingly give it two enthusiastic thumbs up. I had trouble with Gaiman (maybe it was Pratchett) with Good Omens, so this was almost a tie-breaker, but based on Mr. Gaiman’s delightful story, I’m going to try his American Gods series soon.

4. Honor’s Splendor by Julie Garwood   Ah, early 90s historical romance, I’ve missed you. Julie is one of my hall-of-famers, along with Lindsay, McNaught, Woodiwiss and Small. I can never go wrong if I have one of your books in my shelf.

5. ???   I couldn’t remember number five and had obviously, in some misguided attempt at cleaning, reshelved it.

So, now that I’ve finished White Night, need another book to start. I’m reading a non-fiction book for research, but it’s always nice to have something fluffy to fall into while trying to go to sleep or for a few quiet minutes on the couch. Guess I’m going to have to wander back into the living room and browse through our shelves and shelves of books and pick something out.

Life’s a bitch.

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