Happy Friday Fun Edition

April 10, 2010 at 1:02 am (Random Thoughts, Virtual Gems)

 

Hello, lovely blog friends! Isn’t it a beautiful day outside? The sun is shining, the birdies are singing, and my revisions are finished (again) and sent off to Wonder Agent (again) so I am taking this weekend to veg out. (Yes, again.) And in the spirit of Happy Friday Fun, I’m just going to post fun things that make me smile/laugh, and hope they get your weekend off to a lovely start, too. So, without further ado, Excelsior!!!

Is it just me, or do these slippers look more like Billy Crystal in The Princess Bride than Yoda?

 

 

This one made me snicker, so I had to post it.

 

And with more happy news, Glee returns this Tuesday. Was anybody else suffering through the same dark, dreary withdrawl since December?

 

 And with NPH guesting on an episode? Oh joy, oh bliss, oh unadulterated happiness!!!

And I thought this was cute, if a bit…cannibalistic? But I prefer to think of the little gingerbread man getting out of his hot cocoa bath, toweling off, and heading to bed for sweet dreams. (Get it–sweet dreams? Sweet? Like a cookie? Sweet dreams? Yeah…moving on…)

And under the totally random and meaningless heading, I give you the flying rhino. (Reminds me of a similar photo Montana and I made with me and a big plaster dinosaur off I-10. Fake terror from a predator statue is always good for a laugh.)

And for both educational purposes and in honor of my Wonder Agent, I give you the Whale-Shark graph:

 

So happy Friday to one and all. May your weekend, as well as the rest of your April, be this wonderful:

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Five on Friday: The GH Thankful Edition

March 26, 2010 at 8:45 pm (Five on Friday, Virtual Gems)

 

So yesterday was the announcement of RWA’s Rita and Golden Heart (GH) finalists. Many wonderful books were nominated, but yours truly wasn’t one of them. Now, where I was a bit…distraught over this last year (but pluckily rebounded), this year I found myself reflecting on more of the pony and less on the pony poo. Allow me to give you my five reasons why it was a blessing in disguise that I didn’t get a GH nom.

1.  The first thing that worried me was I understand they want a photo of you in pretty short order. Not only will this be used in the monthly RWR (trade magazine), but it will be projected at the awards ceremony in a size only slightly smaller than a billboard. Sorry, people–wasn’t going to happen. Do you think this kind of beautiful just gets up and slaps itself on my face every morning? No! It takes a team of beauticians, hairstylists, colorists, dermatologists and a Buddhist monk chanting in the corner to make me presentable. Saying “Just take a picture–you look lovely!” is like saying “Just launch the Space Shuttle–it’ll be fine!” So that’s one worry I got to leave by the roadside!

2.  The dress. Oh, dear Lord in Heaven, the dress. For those of you unfamiliar with the RWA Nationals awards ceremony, picture 2000 women getting to play dress-up once a year. Yup, it’s like a prom on crack. So if I had been a finalist I would have had to find the dress (floor length, of course) on the chance I won and had to say thank-you in front of those 2000 women. Considering I’m short-waisted and have the skin tone I like to describe as “fish-belly pale”, finding that dress would have required a  platinum Visa, several four-leaf clovers, the stylist who did Sandra Bullock at the Oscars and a Buddhist monk chanting in the corner. Now I can just stick with either a little black dress or something easier and much more fun.

3.  The shoes. Yes, the shoes deserve their own special mention here. Considering the most formal shoes I own are black, navy, or my rock star boots, I would have to either buy new shoes or wear a dress worthy of a rodeo queen. (Yes, this is Nashville, but I don’t know that  even I could take it that far.) And when you wear a 10.5, there aren’t pretty shoes to be had, much less in delicious colors like garnet, peacock, or opal. Not even the Buddhist monk could have helped with this one. No shoes necessary this time, my friend. Me and my boots will be just fine.

4.  The appointments at Nationals. As I understand it, there are extra events for the finalists–meet and greets, rehearsal for the ceremony, probably an audience with Nora or something, and lots of other things that probably aren’t quite so made up. But c’mon–all of those extra appointments mean less bar time, and with an Irish pub at the Gaylord Opryland, I know where I’d rather be! Besides, all you’d do at these appointments is make more friends, more writer friends, and who needs that?

5.  The luggage. Let me just say that at the past few National conventions I’ve pushed the boundary of the 50lb weight requirements, and that was just with my biggest event being my editor/agent appointments. If I had social events, group appointments and, lest we forget, The Dress, I would need at least several steamer trunks to carry my ensemble, the accessories, my varying beauty and hair necessities, and last but not least, the Buddhist monk in the corner.

In all seriousness did I want to be a Golden Heart finalist? Hell, yes. But did I need it? No, I sure didn’t. I’m having a fabulous year and a GH nom might have been a little bit of gluttony. Besides, a friend got some fabulous news she’s been waiting on yesterday, and I like to think the universe took any mojo I had going into the GH and gave it to her. And I prefer it that way.

Now, who’s joining me at the bar?

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Green Shakes and Pam

March 17, 2010 at 9:01 am (Virtual Gems)

First of all, Happy St. Patrick’s Day! I hope all of you are having a lovely day and have that crucial bit of green on so you don’t get pinched. (Unless you want to get pinched, but we’re not going to go there.) No matter what, you should go celebrate with a Shamrock shake. Yummy!

And while you’re slurping up that frosty minty goodness, make a note that this weekend I’m going to transition my blog over to PamelaCayne.wordpress.com to correspond to my updated website at PamelaCayne.com. Don’t worry—there’s going to be lots of warnings and directional signs and the PamWritesRomance sites aren’t going to be taken down for quite a while so everybody has a chance to get acclimated to the new digs. Just doing some housekeeping I’ve been needing to do for a while now. (Which, as you know, I tend to do in furious bouts every few months or so…)

I’ve been revising, revising, revising and couldn’t be happier. I’m super-excited to show it to my agent and hear what she has to say. (Hopefully it’s a conversation filled with words like “stupendous” and “spectacular” and “amazing”, or at least on her end!) And after that, I get to dive back into my new WIP, another dark Victorian that I just can’t wait to immerse myself in! Maybe we’ll have to go see Sherlock Holmes again and call it research, hmm? God, I love being a writer.

See you all again this weekend and whatever you do tonight, be safe! If you’re in Chicago and get to watch the river being dyed green, tell me only if you want to hear me bitch and moan in jealousy. Or, if your town has a cool St. Patrick’s Day event, tell us in the comments below—I’d love to hear about it! So, from my 1/8 Irish heart to yours…

May love and laughter light your days,
and warm your heart and home.
May good and faithful friends be yours,
wherever you may roam.
May peace and plenty bless your world
with joy that long endures.
May all life’s passing seasons
bring the best to you and yours!

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M&Ms and a stick of butter

March 12, 2010 at 8:35 am (Virtual Gems)

Whew! Wowzie was that a party! I’m still finding M&Ms under the sofa and an occasional lime slice in my shoes (and I don’t even want to know what happened to that stick of butter!) You people know how to celebrate, that’s all I’m saying!

I’m knee hip shoulder deep in revisions, but am actually loving it. These changes are making my book so much stronger, and I’m finding new and better ways to torture my characters (and the payoff is that much better!) It’s just an amazing time.

And speaking of which, I need to get back to them now. I promise to post an actual blog next week, but in the meantime, does anybody know how to get salsa out of cat’s fur?

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It's just soooooo much better

February 16, 2010 at 9:18 am (Events, Virtual Gems)

 

Call it the fresh new feeling of the Year of the Tiger, call it the crazy way I celebrate any holiday based on fathers, founding or otherwise, but I did something fabulous last night.

I cleaned.

And I didn’t just clean—I organized, I recycled, I threw away, I moved, I filed, I stored. I was a cleaning fool in pink Crocs and woe be to the area of my focus for that 90 minutes.

You see, a few years ago, I finally drank the Kool-Aid and got a MacBook. Then, with my handy-dandy laptop of Apple love, I discovered I write much better when I’m comfortable than I did at my Staples $109 tower with my (then) five-year old Dell thunked on pre-fab shelves. So as part of an amazing Christmas gift, Montana helped me transform my catch-all spare room into a blissful writing space. Soft and comfy moss-green chair in the corner, bookshelf under the window, new curtains, small table in the other corner for those times when workspace is needed—it was delightful! (And I noticed an upswing in my writing, so it worked!) I did keep the tower and the Dell (along with a filing cabinet) because we still used it all—maybe not as much, but it was still needed.

You know what’s coming next, don’t you?

Yes, just like an exercise bike or treadmill, things stacked up on that tower until it looked like a home office version of this:

Until last night. (Faster than a cross-cut shredder, stronger than a Rubbermaid file sorter, able to dust high shelves with a single wipe—it’s Cleaning Girl!!!) Yup, it was time. Time to take that area back, to make that area into what felt right to me, what I needed it to be, and into something that made me feel that little ‘click’ deep inside and just know it was soooooo much better.

Now, I’m not saying I have super powers or anything, but it also happens that last night I was thinking of my hero in my WIP and just not feeling him. I started to think about some other heroes I had in mind for future books, and when one total long shot popped into my head, I heard that ‘click’ again.  It turns out my cleaning wasn’t limited to my writing space, but also included my writing.

And I just know it’s soooooo much better.

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Happy Friday!

January 29, 2010 at 3:19 pm (Virtual Gems, Writing)

 

Well, the rain worked. Wednesday (when I was home because the tree guy was pruning our storm-damaged tree) I wrote 7 pages, and if I may say so, damn were they good pages! Once scene was especially heartwrenching for my heroine and I kept tearing up. I prayed for peace during those moments so not only would I not have to break that emotional hold on my character, but so the tree guy wouldn’t wonder why the heck I was crying in the middle of the afternoon!

So, the book has picked up again, and if you follow me on Twitter, you’d know I had a fabulous, drool-causing idea pop into my head last night, so I have my laptop scheduled for life beyond the WIP. (Yeah, like I wouldn’t have anyway.) Life is delicious, my friends.

And, since it’s Friday, and since I’m in such a rockin’ good mood, I’m leaving you with a video from my #1 favorite band in the entire world–Great Big Sea. (This is the song that got me turned on to them, so maybe it’ll have the same effect on you, eh? *insert cheeky New Foundland wink here*) Have a great weekend, and enjoy!!!

P.S. The lead singer is Alan Doyle, who plays minstrel Alan-a-Dale in the new Russell Crowe Robin Hood movie. How’s that for perfect casting?

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F*** the sailboat

January 27, 2010 at 9:50 am (Virtual Gems)

 

I was never able to see the sailboat in those 3-D posters that were such the rage some years back, but that’s okay. My characters have finally popped out of the background to become complex, crunchy, flesh and blood, dark and twisty hopeless cases. And it’s gray and rainy.

Dang, it’s a beautiful day.

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2010: The Year of the Yawp

January 5, 2010 at 8:35 am (Virtual Gems)

Take a deep breath. Smell that? That, my friends, is a new year. Many, many things are scheduled for these new and lovely months and I’d like to celebrate just a few of them. Let’s review, shall we?

  • The Winter Olympics in Vancouver
  • Awards shows (the Golden Globes, the Oscars)
  • The release of Apple’s delicious and mysterious iPad
  • RWA’s 30th anniversary, including the national convention in Nashville

And, let us not forget the most basic, the most beguiling of a new year—a new beginning. New Year is second to me under the ‘Fresh Start’ category (the first, being of course, Labor Day/Back to School) so it is a time to look ahead with clear fresh eyes and see how far that horizon goes.

This year? 2010? The horizon is endless, my friends. I am feeling the potential of this year like Armstrong and Aldrin about to walk on the moon. I am looking ahead and seeing events that are going to inspire me, people who are going to encourage me, stories that are going to delight me, and opportunities that are going to amaze me.

In the words of Walt Whitman, “I sound my barbaric yawp over the roofs of the world.”

Take a deep breath, friends. It’s time to yawp.

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My Book Trailer!

December 14, 2009 at 7:05 pm (Events, Virtual Gems)

Okay, Baz Luhrmann I’m not, but that’s okay–he’s no Pamela Cayne.

(P.S. To get rid of the gobbledegook when you’re watching, move your mouse off the Vimeo screen.)

Bazinga.

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I haz a song

November 16, 2009 at 8:51 am (Virtual Gems, Writing)

I have several songs, actually–the luck of music being such a large part of my life and DNA. These songs mean something to me and resonate in such a way they could bring me to tears. But this particular song I wanted to share with you at this time. I discovered about 2 weeks ago on the (wonderful!) Glee soundtrack and have since worn out my iPod listening to it. It’s called Defying Gravity, and here is the Glee version:

I love the lyrics, I love the Rachel and Kurt duet, I love the music and the harmonies–I just fell head-over-heels in love with this song. How could I, as a writer, not fell something that basically said “I’m not following your rules, I’m making my own.” Sheer bliss.

And after the first few times I’d listened to it, I found out it was originally from the musical Wicked. So, one visit to YouTube later and I found this:

Yes, I love it. Not quite as much as the Glee version, but boy-oh-boy it’s up there. Plus, it’s got Kristin Chenoweth in it, and I’m becoming more and more of a fangirl of hers. In the spirit of fairness (certainly not indecisiveness!), I decided to share them both. I hope you enjoy them and they get your week off to a kick-ass start.

Like the song says, Everyone deserves the chance to fly.

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