Jennifer McKenzie

Romance--Boy meets girl. Romantic Suspense--Boy meets girl with dead bodies.
Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Thirteen Reasons I Lurrrrrrve Dayna Hart

I had something really clever planned, but I've decided to reveal the true reasons I'm a huge fangirl for

1. Awesome CritiquePartner
If there's a comma in a bad place or a plot hole, she'll spot it. She rocks. And she doesn't blow smoke up my ass either.

2. I've Never Heard Her Say "Hon, You Shouldn't Feel That Way"
Nope, not once. She's never said that I shouldn't be insane, but she tells me that I am. Ahhh a true friend.

3 Her Writing Is BRILLIANT
There isn't anyone who writes like her. She manages, with a minimum of words, to convey a mood, an expression. I still remember reading Go Between and being stunned. Just stunned. She's pretty amazing.

4. She Listens to Me. And Listens. And Listens.
I don't know how many of my stellar "plans" she's listened patiently to, but there's been a lot of them. None of them have panned out, but I still have hope. LOL. I don't know if she does.

5. She Is Awake At 5am Pacific Standard Time
Lots of mornings, I'm awake early and my brain (spinning on coffee) will need a little refresher course in sanity. Luckily, she's on Eastern Standard Time. Makes those early morning moments of nuttiness a little more tolerable.

6. Her Husband, Writer Widow
Now, don't get me wrong. He's not my type. He's very tolerant of me, however, and puts up with me. I lurrve him to as I said on May 25th. He rocks.

7. She's Introduced Me To New Authors And Added To My TBR List
She's ranted and raved about Guy Gabriel Kay, Raymond Feist and others that I've checked them out. Her knowledge of quality fantasy writers has added to my pile of books I want to read.

8. She's The Mommy I'd Love To Be
She's so awesome to her kids and somehow manages to give lovins even when it's tough. I want to be her when I grow up.

9. She's The Prude/Perv
Ahhh the best of both worlds. She is neither "A dirty girl" or "Shocked" by anything spewing from my mouth. It's a talent. Maybe it's the way she bats her eyelashes.

10. She Makes Me Laugh
Whether it's little stories about WW or snark about stuff we like to bitch about, she's pretty damn funny and there are days I REALLY need that.

11. She'll Pound Me If I Ever Quit Writing
And frankly, that frightens me. She could kick my ass!

12. She's The Devil's Advocate
Often, I'm a tad unreasonable. Quit laughing!!!! She'll point out little tidbits of wisdom that make me see another side of things.

13. She Lurrrrves Me
If you knew me, you'd know how amazing that truly is. LOL.

posted at 4:31 PM by Jennifer :: 29 comments

A Whiskey Wednesday Rant

That bottle looks very good today. I have so many mini rants that I decided to just roll them up into one long, annoying bitch fest.
Today, I have to go to the doctor, fix my husband's disability claim and run other errands of the mind numbing variety.

Rant number one involves doctors. Is there a paper they sign when they get their degree that they have to be asshats? Concrete is laid in their ears and ice is embedded in their fingertips. I have had several different doctors in the last ten years due to insurance and location changes. They all had one thing in common. They all thought I was stupid.
When I was pregnant, I told the obstetrician that I was having a lot of pain. She (that's right "she") basically said that was part of it and quit being a baby. When they pulled a ten pound CYST three months after my son blasted his way past the monster, the doctor was shocked. I wasn't. I told her there was something wrong. *rolls eyes*. I'm finding myself increasingly unwilling to inform a doctor of my symptoms and TRUST that they'll address the problem.

My second rant is about the Disability Claims of the state of California. When Joe was newly diagnosed with diabetes, there was a three week period where complications from the illness kept him off work. Disability forms were sent. The doctor signed the papers. The money was paid........a month later.

Then, last month, Disability sends us a letter saying we owe them money because Joe was paid for a week he could work. So, I call and they tell me to send a letter--yadayadayada. I do all this and a month later I get ANOTHER letter stating they're going to attach his wages to pay it back and so on and so forth.


So, on top of getting a speculem up close and personal today, I get to play detective and find out if Disability is on crack.

But I'm not bitter.

Of course, this is the crown jewel of the two weeks from hell. I'm ready for some kind of break--good news, something.

Oh, wait! I do have some good news. Go check out what Jessica Faust said about my query at Bookends Literary Agency I was sure I was going to get pasted. Instead, she was very kind and extremely helpful. A little good news helps.

End of rant.

posted at 5:18 AM by Jennifer :: 4 comments

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Tonight! Tonight! It's Coming Tonight!!!

Most of you know that I LOVE
The Deadliest Catch
that comes on every Tuesday night on The Discovery Channel. Tonight will be even better.
What are they doing now, you may ask?
After the next episode of Opilio fishing, there will be a new four part series called "After The Catch".
AND Edgar Hansen will be doing a chat tonight at 10pm Eastern. *Happy Sigh*.
Need just a taste before tonight's buffet? I got a copy of the following from one of the best blogs on the planet, DEADLIEST REPORTS

Deadliest Catch - Waves
Uploaded by DiscoveryNetworkTV

posted at 5:06 AM by Jennifer :: 5 comments

Sunday, May 27, 2007

This is Memorial Day Weekend in the U.S. We barbecue, camp, get together with family and watch NASCAR at Charlotte.
Often, as I'm looking forward to the long weekend, the reason for the holiday doesn't occur to me. Yet, I am the daughter of a Marine. (There's no such thing as an "ex-Marine"). I am the grand daughter of a Navy man who fought in WW II. My uncle fought in Vietnam, my father fought in Korea and both my grandfathers fought in Germany and the Pacific. I am from a long line of military tradition. Memorial Day is for them.
It's for the soldiers that stood on the front lines regardless of their politics or the politics back home. It's for the soldiers who have done the mind-numbing work that no one remembers in places like Okinawa, Serbia, Saudi Arabia, South Korea and Guantanamo Bay. It's to remember all the soldiers that DON'T make the news. The ones that do their job and do it well. It's the ones that head out innocent and come back broken. My husband's cousin, whose experience in the Gulf War created so much anguish that he committed suicide in 1999. My best friend's kids who all took their turn serving the country they love and not for the college money. Jason, who served as a Marine. Chiloh, who served in the army and almost went covert. And Justin, who went into the Navy and then found out he had Muscular Dystrophy.
It's to remember the ones who peeled the potatoes, heal the wounded, pass out the food and supplies in Thailand, stand at our borders as a target in more ways than one. The grunt, the sailor, the infantry that is massed under the common term "The Troops".
Perhaps it's because I know people serving that have changed "The Troops" for me to mean something more, something special.
What a burden it must be to represent "America" in all those places. Some don't do it well. Some go above and beyond. For them, I wish them safety and security. As I remember Joe's grandfather (who died last year) who parachuted into France, and my son's namesake, who is one of 50 men out of 2000 that survived a battle in Korea, and my father who carried shrapnel in his legs when his jeep was blown up and he was the only one who survived, I am in awe of the sacrifice that continues when the war is over.
That's what Memorial Day is to me. Remembering the dead and the living, and being grateful that they were willing to step forward.

posted at 8:35 AM by Jennifer :: 8 comments

Friday, May 25, 2007

I Threatened, So Here It Is

To your left is a picture of my partner in crime, my cp extrordinaire, my author salvation,Dayna Hart Her hubby is awesome too and I threatened to blog about him.

He goes by many names. Superhubby, brokenspooge and #@#@#@&$# when he's saying something snarky. Online he's known as Writer's Widow. He hangs out with all of us and holds his own. When he showed up on The Novelty Girls he cracked us all up.
When I call Dayna (and I do it pretty often) he's even willing to talk to me for a little while when Dayna's sleeping.
It usually ends up like this.

WW--Dayna's sleeping
Me--Are you working?
WW--Well, I'm watching Orange County Choppers and working. But I'm willing to be distracted. Dayna told me something about the Redneck is coming home and then he went fishing or something?
Me--Yeah, he ditched me with the kids and took care of himself. The bastid.
WW--I'm surprised.
WW--I figured you'd have that nagging wife thing down pat.
Me--Really? Nope. In this house, he's the boss.
WW--Now that really surprises me. You really call him the boss?
Me--Absolutely. He's the captain of the ship--the CEO of the company. Just ask him.
WW--Do you wear a French Maid outfit while you're working for the company?
Me--No! That's your job. By the way, are you getting a plane ticket and coming out to clean my house?

Somehow after this the conversation degenerated and we started talking about things related to his nickname. I'm not going any further lest Dayna kill me.

Writer's Widow is one of the best. He puts up with the hour long brainstorming, the four way conference calls, the snarky bitches that are his wife's friends. He even keeps me company when I just want to talk to Dayna but she's sleeping, or working or I don't know, trying to have a life.
He is one of the best. Dayna got lucky. He even called her "hot" while he was on the phone with me. He's a sweetie. The great thing about WW is that he's willing to put up with me. There ain't too many of those around.
They broke the mold when they made him. His theory about that is that the original didn't work too well, so they didn't make anymore. I, however, think he's unique.
I lurrrrve you brokenspooge. LOL.

Oh, and after a long hiatus,in which she was doing things like having a baby, working and writing two novels, Tracy Montoya has returned with "Seven Rules of Engagement When Dealing With Cover Models".
I took notes.
Check them out. I've missed her and I'm so glad she's back.

posted at 7:01 AM by Jennifer :: 5 comments

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Thirteen Jobs I've Had

Thirteen Jobs I've Had

1…. First Job--Bus girl Lyon's restaurant
Sad but true. I started cleaning slats in the kitchen. ewwwwwww.

2. Next--Server at a steakhouse called "Bonanza".
Yep, that's really the name of the place. They also have a place called "Po' Folks. This is where I learned the joy of cheese sauce on broccoli.

3. Next--Waitress in a Greek Restaurant.
I'll let you in on a secret that the entire Napa Valley already knows. I SUCK as a waitress. In a fancy restaurant? I'm hopeless. I couldn't open wine bottles without shoving the cork into the wine. I HATED Greek food. LOL. Hopeless.

4. So I Moved On To--Coffee Shop Waitress at Cheri's.
Yeah, I wasn't any better at this. The clientèle liked me until I screwed up their breakfast order......every morning. I kid you not. I SUCKED as a waitress. Dumped Ice Tea on some poor guy.

5. Next--cashier at Giovannoni's Market.
My sister got me this job and I was ringing up groceries, memorizing produce prices and smiling through gritted teeth at very rude customers. Good times.

6. At The Same Time--I was "mop girl" at Healthquest gym.
Believe me. It's sooooo glamorous to be mopping up after the Napa Valley elite and their sweat. Again, my sister got me this job. I kind of feel sorry for my sister right now. LOL.

7. At the Same Time--I was "Wash girl" at CalTest Wastewater Lab
Yes, I had three jobs at the same time. And this job sounds worse than it was. CalTest was where everyone sent their water to be tested for metals, ecoli and other stuff. It was pretty interesting stuff. My job was to acid clean the pipettes and glassware they used. Acetone, Hydrochloric acid and so on. It wasn't easy, but I enjoyed it.

8. Next---Group Home Counselor.
This one doesn't even make my resume because I was so bad at it. Bad experience all around. I'm just not cut out for that kind of work. I have HUGE respect for those who can do it.

9. Next--Home Health Aide.
I took myself to school and became a Certified Nursing Assistant/Home Health Aide. I worked in different client's homes and that wasn't so bad. They all actually liked me and I didn't suck at it. LOL. Home care is wonderful for everyone. It is a little harder to detach from patients and I had a tough time when they passed away.

10. Next--Certified Nursing Assistant In Rehab.
The kind of rehab you go to after hip surgery, not drug use. LOL. Hospital setting, kind of boring for me. Same old same old. So.....

11. I Transferred to--CNA on Medical/Surgical unit.
THIS was more interesting. Lots of different problems. Major challenges. It was exciting. I started going to nursing school and that made it all fascinating. (I got pneumonia second semester and had to drop out, divorced, remarried, kids, ladidadida)

12. By Choice....really--Mother.
I was a stay at home mom. That's what I put under "employment". I did that for four years. Joe was able to have me home and that was great. Of course, this is a lifetime job for me, no matter where else I work. Funny how easy that is to forget.

13. On Occasion--Secretary
Technically, this was also part of my job in #12, but this one pays me. LOL. I work as a fill in secretary for the Union here. It's interesting, but had I known what was involved, I might have said "no". It's not easy to work two weeks, be off for THREE MONTHS and then do two weeks again. Let's just say it's not as bad as waitressing, but I'm not stellar at it either.

There's also "author" but though it's WORK, it's not my "job". LOL.

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

posted at 8:08 AM by Jennifer :: 24 comments

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Whiskey Wednesday Release Frenzy

Welcome to another Whiskey Wednesday. Instead of the usual rants and raves, I'm lifting a toast in celebration. In the next few months, I've got books coming out.

Being released on June 8th, is "Triple Play" the third in the Divine Intervention Series. See the blurb HERE

June will be a busy month for me. So the celebratory whiskey will be flowing. My erotic romance pen name also releases in June.

On August 4th, "Fires Of Passion" a romantic fantasy, will be released at Cobblestone Press. See the blurb HERE

Then, I have another release September 1st with Whiskey Creek/Torrid
called "Heart Of The Storm". This one will be in print.

Raise a glass with me and wish me luck. I'm going to busy letting everyone know about my books coming out.

I'll be at Joyfully Reviewed with my fellow crazy authors from The Novelty Girls for more fun and mayhem on June 2nd.

*tips a glass back* SWEEEEEEEEET.

posted at 11:47 AM by Jennifer :: 7 comments

Monday, May 21, 2007

Black Monday For Me

You know, the people I've associated with online have been just as real to me, important to me, as the people I've met in real life. Maybe it's because I've been able to reach out at any time and someone will be there. What started this maudlin train of thought is the impending loss of Miss Snark from the blogosphere. I recognize how much her blog sucks away her time but I will miss her.

She's not the only one that's calling is quits. Everybody Can Just Bite My Ass also closed up. One called "Dirty Laundry" also went private. These were blogs that gave me a good laugh or two when I was down. I'm not saying it's an epidemic or anything, but it does seem that keeping the old snark up is difficult.

It's just so amazing that in only two years, Miss Snark has created a huge community that came up with a THESAURAS for her. LOL. (Check back Here) Anyway, it's a black Monday because I'm reminded that it's all temporary. Connections are fragile. And the "friends" we make online are missed just as much. Even Paula Graves is dealing with this. See her post Here

Things change. Life is ever in flux. The dream is to be able to have the time, the energy, the heart to connect with all the human beings that touch our lives. But it is a dream. They touch us...and move on. Sometimes, it's a gentle touch like a soft rain or a thick fog that blows away by the end of the day. Sometimes it's a two by four that connects us to the world in a concrete way. There is no way that I can create a strong relationship with everyone who influences me. I can only be grateful that they reached out and that we touched for the moment.

Acceptance is the key. Accepting that I am limited. I may WANT to "do more" or "say more" but I am only one person, one heart. I can accept this in others easily. I don't expect other people--online or otherwise--to do anymore than they do. Yet, I put heavy burdens on myself.

I guess my point is this. Those of us online, whether we're blogging, writing or just hanging out, are connected by the hidden lines of wireless power. The trick is to enjoy the ones who give us a boost, make us think or make us laugh. Because it's fleeting.

posted at 4:25 AM by Jennifer :: 10 comments

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Coming June 8th Triple Play by Jennifer McKenzie

Thomas, my recovering alcoholic guardian angel, has another assignment. He has a second chancer with a bitter past. When Danielle Laskey fights to get the high school baseball team to accept her daughter, she clashes with the coach, Christopher Jeffers. Although she's been a pain in Christopher's ass, there's an attraction they can't deny. But Danielle has something in her past that may keep her alone. Can Thomas bring these two stubborn people together? Or will he strike out?

This book is the third in the Divine Intervention series featuring Thomas, my meeting going, feather shedding guardian angel. When I was a kid, I loved softball. Some of my favorite memories is driving around in the back of the coach's pick up truck (back in the day when it wasn't illegal) and shouting out various baseball rhymes and songs. We'd win and go for ice cream and the coach would drive every single one of us home.

As an adult, I have to say that coach Dennis went above and beyond. Those are fond memories and the ones I tapped into for "Triple Play". It's releasing June 8th at Cobblestone Press Enjoy.

posted at 5:42 AM by Jennifer :: 0 comments

Friday, May 18, 2007

When Worlds Collide

I'm having one of those weeks where I wish I hadn't gotten up in the morning. Any morning. Without details (cause my real life "stuff" is dramatic to me and not interesting to anyone else), I would just like to say that it all comes in waves for me.

If everything is falling into place with money, my husband isn't being very nice and I want to kill him.
If I lurrrrrve my husband to bits, the money goes to hades.
If those two things are finally balanced, my health (or his, or the kids) goes south.
And if all of THOSE things aren't too bad, I can't write two sentences that resemble the English language.....and people tell me so.

Do I sound depressed?
I'm actually not. After all the times I've had in my life--money issues, health issues, divorce, death etc.--I know one thing.


Whether it's the retrograde of Mercury or just bad luck, it all passes eventually. I just have to hang in there until it swings around. I've got work to do. It isn't going to come to me on a silver platter. Or even a casserole dish. But it will come.

Meanwhile, I'm going to stick my chin up and hope that the next thing doesn't knock me on my ass. LOL.

Anyone relate? Or am I alone in my insanity. Oh, I'm never alone in my insanity. LOL.

posted at 1:46 PM by Jennifer :: 6 comments

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Thirteen Reasons I Love My Husband

Thirteen Reasons I love My Husband

1…. "Honey, we've been through worse. We've always gotten through it together."
He always says the right thing when I need it. Just when I think he won't help, he does.

2. His Wacky Redneck Sense Of Humor
Joe likes to play a game called "Isn't it that one guy?" which he says requires a victim who always needs to be right and someone who wants to torture them. This is his idea of funny. It goes like this:
Joe--"Isn't that Jimmy Stewart?"
Me--"No,honey, that's John Wayne."
Joe--"That's Jimmy Stewart. He's the guy in the movie about the Alamo."
Me--"That's John Wayne."
Joe--"No, really, he was in "Sands of Iwo Jima" right?"
This continues ad nauseam until I'm ready to kill him or give up being right.

This should have been number one. I thought I'd spare you the details, however. YOu can use your imagination.

4. He's The Hardest Working Man I know
He doesn't call in sick and goes the extra mile for anyone he works for. His work ethic is miles ahead of mine.

5. He's fun to bounce ideas off of.
He's a frustrated artists and sometimes listening to his opinion on my work is a little tough, but Michelle always reminds me that I'm not writing for the forty year old male market. LOL.

6. He Takes the kids Fishing and Camping
When I was little, my Dad would have liked to have taken me camping and fishing more, but his knees gave out and his health wasn't great. He told Joe when we were close to our wedding that Joe needed to "take that girl camping". I miss my Dad, but I'm thrilled to see my kids getting all the stuff I wanted when I was kid.

7. He's Willing To admit When He's Wrong
It may take a few years, but he will do it.

8. He Doesn't Mind That I'm a Mouthy B*tch.
One of the things that endears my hubby to me is that he almost seems RELIEVED when I blow a gasket. LOL. I lurrrrrve him.

9. He Loves Christmas and Family stuff As Much As I Do.
One of the best things about being married to Joe is putting cookie crumbs on stuffed animals. After all, Santa has a party with them when he comes. Oh, and hiding Easter eggs. And he went and got a little pot to put gold coins in for St. Patrick's Day. Isn't he sweet?

10 His Taste In Lingerie
'nuff said

11. He has GORGEOUS blue eyes
That man has the best blue eyes I've ever seen. *Happy Sigh*

12. He Helped Me Make Two Beautiful Children
They are gorgeous and cute with their own unique personalities. Dell is smart and witty. Paul is tough and hilarious. It saves them on a daily basis.

13. We're Partners, Not Adversaries
Not that we remember this all the time. LOL. For the most part, we face the world together. It's nice to have that strong silent (okay, not so silent) type standing beside me.

Links to other Thursday Thirteens!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

posted at 8:10 AM by Jennifer :: 26 comments

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Whiskey Wednesday--Puppies And Little Children

Welcome to Whiskey Wednesday. Todays rant is brought to you by With special consideration by When you want to drive any female adult insane, just go to

There are some things in polite (and even not so polite) conversation that will get you lynched. Not liking puppies is one of them. Oh, admit it. If you heard someone say that they hated cute, little fur balls of love, you'd shake your head.
Well, I hate dogs. I do. Not that I'm mean to them or anything, but my life would be a little bit less chaotic if they weren't around. Of course, I don't have one dog. I have a kennel!

They are cute. It's the only reason they live when they wake me up at two-thirty in the morning. And four. And six. When they jump on my bed, jabbing a paw into my kidneys. When they frantically bark at total strangers walking across the street. Or at my six year old son. When I'm picking up bits and pieces of garbage that the dogs chewed from the bathroom wastebasket up off my living room floor. Ah, good times.

My biggest complaint is not that the dogs are....well....dogs. My biggest complaint is the reaction I get when I say "I don't like pets". Most look confused. A few even get offended. It's kind of like if you're unmarried and don't ever want to have children. "You'll change your mind." Or "When you meet the right person, you'll want to have kids." Um, maybe not.

These days I'm almost afraid to say I don't like dogs. It's like somehow that means you're not as warm or loving. I haven't seen too many benefits to dog ownership. I do pet the dogs (they live here. It's not their fault I'm not a dog lover) and one of them is my shadow. Yet, my blood pressure is higher now than a year ago. I am just NOT a pet person.

So I ask you, is there something weird that you hate that others give you that "look"? You know, the one you got when you said something like "I don't like The Beatles. I think they were over rated" to a Baby Boomer? Or "Titanic? Didn't like it." Did you ever go against the grain of the "norm" and wonder if maybe you ought to conform?

It's taken me YEARS to admit that I don't like having pets. Isn't that weird.
The preceding was brought to you by Small Children And Puppies, a sleep deprivation company.

posted at 3:07 AM by Jennifer :: 13 comments

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

The Origin Of A Series

You have to wonder what kind of mind would come up with an alcoholic guardian angel, but you all have seen my insanity.

It started with my best friend, who is bitter and snarky, which is why I lurrrve her. We were discussing her period of "abstinence" (I didn't want to use that word because it implies it was voluntary. She was definitely NOT trying to abstain. It just happened) and it went like this:

Me: Look, it's going to get better. Your Higher Power has got a plan.

Michelle: I'm not sure the plan is for me to get laid.

Me: You never know.

Michelle: Oh I do. You know how people have those angels watching out for them, pointing them in the right direction?

Me: Yeah

Michelle: Well I think mine is drunk.

Me: *giggle* That would be typical of us. We'd have alcoholic guardian angels and they'd have to hit a bottom.

Michelle: Yep and go to Angel A.A. meetings complete with bad coffee and angel gurus.

Me: Oh honey, you're going to have your happy ending.

Michelle: Whatever.

Me: I know! I'll write you one!!!!!

And Thomas, the alcoholic, newly sober, prickly, guardian angel was born. That's how it usually starts with me.

Start Here

posted at 5:05 AM by Jennifer :: 4 comments

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Mirror Mirror On The Wall I'm my Mother After All

You Are Somewhat Like Your Mom

Believe it or not, you and your mom are pretty darn similar.
It may not seem like it at times, but you and your mom have a lot of common ground.
Over time, you'll probably get closer ... especially if you emphasize the things you like about each other.
Are You Like Your Mom?

There is NOTHING hotter than three men in the kitchen cooking breakfast and then doing the dishes afterward.
Joe is definitely going to get laid. LOL.
Happy Mother's Day everyone.

posted at 9:01 AM by Jennifer :: 2 comments

Friday, May 11, 2007

Eight Things About Me

Shelli Stevens tagged me. And I don't know if I can think of eight people, but here it goes.

Here are the rules:

1. Each player starts with eight random facts/habits about themselves.

2. People who are tagged need to write their own blog about their eight things and post these rules.

3. At the end of your blog, you need to choose eight people to get tagged and list their names.

4. Don’t forget to leave them a comment telling them they’re tagged, and to read your blog.

OK - 8 Random Facts/Habits About Me:

1. I Bite My Nails, Too.

Another thing Shelli and I have in common (as well as being choir geeks in high school) but I wear acrylic nails so I don't get a chance to nibble on them.

2. I'm in Al-Anon
Most of you know I'm in a twelve step program for friends and families of alcoholics. You can really tell that I belong in it by some of my favorite stuff. Evanescence's "Call Me When You're Sober", Love Matt on The Deadliest Catch, Crossfade, etc.

3. I know how to shoot a shotgun Be afraid, be very afraid.

4. I talk on the phone ALL the time I do. It's my little secret. No matter what, I'm on the phone AT LEAST once a day. I'm not real shy either.

5. I'm computer illiterate All the really cool stuff you see on my website(s) is done by Crystal Jordan and Dayna Hart. They're awesome. They've made my web presence a little easier.

6. I'm sensitive My widdle feewings get hurt a lot, but I've learned to suck it up and deal with it. Don't worry, though. I usually realize I'm being unreasonable. It makes rejections LOADS of fun. (Yeah, Writerwidow, that means I'm indecisive, obsessive AND sensitive. I'm a riot a minute)

7. I read Winston Churchill for fun Yep, that's right. I read all about British History and World War II......for light reading. Hey, some people read Chekov. I read Churchill.

8. Finally, I'm a terrible housekeeper I'd rather mow the lawn (and I HATE mowing the lawn) than mop the floor. Doesn't that make me interesting? I don't mean I'm a terrible housekeeper like there's dust. I mean, like I'm lucky to be able to walk into my computer room without kicking something out of the way. I'm REALLY bad. Let's just say if I'm ever BIG like La Nora, I won't be inviting any magazines to interview me in my living room. "Um, can I meet you at a restaurant? That would be great."

posted at 8:20 PM by Jennifer :: 6 comments

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Thirteen Reasons I Love Joey Hill

Thirteen Reasons I Love Joey Hill

1…. She's HOT.

That woman can write sex so well that I'm tense and edgy when after I read it. My husband is also a big fan, though he doesn't know her name.

2. She makes things that would normally shock me and have me go "eewwwwww" sound like it might be fun.

I wish I knew how she did it, but she's freakin' brilliant.

3. She writes erotic romance AND romantic suspense. *happy sigh*
Her book "Natural Law" is amazing AND it has a great mystery/serial killer to boot.

4. Um, LOVE her covers.
Check this out for Natural Law
and This One and Oh. My. God.

5. In "Natural Law", my favorite book by Ms. Hill, her hero is the submissive....and he's still sexy and alpha.
How did she do that?

6. She remains a mysterious person
No blog, no real info on the website. I'm dying to know this brilliant writer, but she stays fairly hidden. I lurrrrve her.

7. Her use of the Lifestyle is awesome
It's rare to find a BDSM book that really portrays the intricacies of the Lifestyle for those of us who are vanilla (with chocolate swirls). Her depiction of the different characters are amazing.

8. Her characters ROCK.
I fell in love with her hero and LOVED her heroine in "Natural Law". I swear I'm buying the whole series if I ever get the extra cash.

9. She's in Ebook AND Print
All the better to have her handy whether I'm at my computer or in my bedroom. (IF you know what I mean)

10. She saves me on batteries.
I'm not explaining this one.

11. She isn't overexposed
There's not a big buzz about her everywhere, which means she isn't getting scrutinized to death. I love that. Of course, it might be interesting to see her on Oprah.....she'd put that woman in her place!

12. The Toy Factor
Without belaboring the point in her writing, she gives a good description of some great toys and their use. The nice thing is that she doesn't treat her readers like idiots and yet, also doesn't go over their heads.

13. The Tension Factor
She creates more conflict and tension in one story than I've ever seen. It's brilliant stuff. Did I say I luuuuuurrrve her?

Links to other Thursday Thirteens!
2.Gwen Hayes
3.Crystal Jordan
5 Jennifer Colgan

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

posted at 12:53 PM by Jennifer :: 23 comments

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Whiskey Wednesday 5/9/07 My Brain Is Out To Kill Me

Okay, I'm sure no one else does this, but you can get a glimpse into the insanity that is me.
Yesterday, I received an email that spun me. I mean the I-can't-shut-my-brain-that-is-out-to-kill-me-off kind of spun. It was ugly. See, I have this really great brain that doesn't have "thoughts". It has arguments, complete with a conference table and debates that make the Democratic fracas look like a ladies tea party. By the way, this is also the place my characters make appearances and start pounding their fists on the table top to get my attention.
Yeah, the men in white would find me a VERY interesting subject.
Anyway, it usually looks something like this.

Me: Oh, look! An email from *insert whatever important person/place/thing I'm obsessing about*

Obsessive Me: Oh My God! Look what they said!

Me: Right, but they sent it to fifty other people too. It probably doesn't apply to me.

Obsessive Me: Yeah, but, it does. If you would just *insert insane action here that I think will "fix" some problem* then they wouldn't SEND an email like that. Then, you wouldn't have to worry about it.

Me: That's crazy! I don't have time. I don't have any ideas. I can't do that. And they're not expecting me to do it. I'm doing everything I can.

Obsessive Me: You and I both know that's not enough. That's why they're sending the email.

Me: What? So I'll do something that is insane that they don't need me to do? That makes no sense.

Obsessive Me: Email *insert unrelated person here that is peripherally involved in the drama* and see what SHE thinks.

Me: No. I want to stick to the plan. You remember. The plan? The one where I have a life?

Obsessive Me: Plan sman. This is an opportunity. It only knocks once.

Me: I think its knocked you a few times. That explains a lot.

Obsessive Me: But they sent an EMAIL!!!!

Me: I'm calling Dayna. You're crazy.

Are you scared now?

posted at 9:43 AM by Jennifer :: 9 comments

Sunday, May 06, 2007

A Soundtrack for "Still Waters", My Work In Progress

Every story I write has its own soundtrack. "Singled Out" had Aerosmith and Brooks and Dunn in the background. "Fires Of Passion" (Cobblestone release 8/07) had Evanescence "Open The Door" as a backdrop. "Heart of the Storm" had Crossfade, Linkin Park, Metallica, and lots of other rock since fishermen usually listen to stuff to keep them awake.
"Still Waters" has the following.

This Alanis song is Jessica's opinion about her ex. I think of the story when I listen to "Under The Rug Swept", the CD this song appears on.

And This Video which is a theme song for both of them.

Grief is an overpowering motive for both Jessica and Travis. This song ripped my heart out that way and makes me think of them.

This song makes me think of Travis. He's a tough guy, together, a rebel. Jessica hits him sideways. Go girl. LOL.

This song is AWESOME. It's how they both are living their lives.
Hope you enjoyed these. There's more, but they didn't have videos with them. LOL.
There's a bunch of pictures of the kids in a slideshow on my MySpace. Check it out. (See the link on the right)

posted at 9:16 AM by Jennifer ::

Saturday, May 05, 2007


I heard the BEST news today! My friend Gemma Halliday's double RITA nominated novel, Spying in High Heels, is in development for a television series on the USA Network!!! It’s currently one of five new shows being developed for their fall 2007/2008 season.

Spying in High Heels follows shoe designer Maddie Springer, who in an effort to track down her missing boyfriend, realizes that her knack for fashion also serves another purpose: it makes her a great detective. Maddie's uniquely female perspective helps her pick up clues, using her designer's eye to discern tell tale shapes, colors and patterns, among other things. Along with her best friend Dana, an out-of-work actress, Maddie decides to open a detective agency operating out of her stepfather's hair salon.

Not all shows in development make it to the air, but this one should! If you want to see Maddie and Ramirez on the small screen, write to the USA Network and tell them you heard about SPYING IN HIGH HEELS and can’t wait to watch it. Or, if you’ve read the book and liked it, tell them that, too! Contact the programming department at the USA

In the meantime, read up on Gemma's books, including Undercover in High Heels & Killer in High Heels.

posted at 7:27 PM by Jennifer :: 1 comments

A Cobblestone Author with a Great Read.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
Oasis of My Heart

by Tara S Nichols

Release Date May 25th 2007

Sadie Davies is running away for the second time in her life. The first time she wanted stardom. This time she is running from it. Intending to keep a low profile she sets up for a solitary life, but with sexy, know-it-all, neighbor Dustin Reed she finds it rather difficult. Moving in next door to playboy Dustin Reed wasn’t Sadie Davies idea of keeping a low profile. With ex-manager Horace Bigelow hunting her down the last thing Sadie wants is a distraction.
Now she has to decide whether to let this lady-killer into her life for fear of attracting a real killer.
Available May 25th from Cobblestone Press!

posted at 5:03 PM by Jennifer :: 0 comments

Friday, May 04, 2007

Why I'm No Good At Edrama

I won't recap the latest edrama that's occupying our blogging lives but I'll say this. On my Thursday Thirteen, I mention that it was stupid for me to give my opinion on public forums. The latest bruhaha has reinforced this idea that I need to SHUTUP. In posting my opinion on a couple of blogs, I confused the names and the facts several times and had to delete my comments. I think the reason I don't get involved much is because I usually have to say "Mea Culpa". *sigh*.
Anyhoo, I'm just saying that sometimes I need to stay out of the fracas. It's sooooo tough for me. LOL.
Can you say "Diva"?
Deeeeevvvvaaaaaaahhhh. LOL.

posted at 8:15 AM by Jennifer :: 2 comments

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Thursday Thirteen--Stupid Writing Things I've Done

Thirteen Stupid Writing Things I've Done YOUR NAME

1…. Believed that writing romance would be easy

Yes, I really believed this. I sat down and thought "I'll spit this out in no time". *rolls eyes*. Karma got me for this one.

2. Wrote 75,000 words without a crit partner or any information on writing in general.
I had no idea I was a panster. I thought you sat down and wrote a book and submitted it. That's right. I ain't sharpest tool in the shack.

3. Submitted said 75K manuscript without having anyone critique it and hoped for the best.
This is hilarious. Somewhere out there is a Harlequin Intrigue editor with watering eyes from the horrible stuff I subjected her to.

4. Entered the "Best First Meeting" contest at Romance Divas.
Don't get me wrong. I learned A TON from them. I did think that what I subbed was "clean" without knowing what that really looked like. The best feedback I got was from Jennifer Colgan who is brilliant. She called me on my head hopping and other little things. Her comments were invaluable.

5. Started four manuscripts at the same time......and finished NONE of them.
In my WIP file of my computer are several dead stories that I started after the 75K monster. All of them were started in the same week. BAD idea for me. In this way, I am like a raven with a VERY short attention span and an attraction to "shiny things".

6. Told my mother I write erotic romance.
THIS was an error in judgment that I'm still dealing with. I knew my mother well enough to get a pen name (and not tell her what it is) but not smart enough to keep the fact I write erotic romance to myself. I blame the adrenaline high I got from being accepted and getting a contract. "It was the drugs, man". LOL.

7. Holding back my own personal feelings in my writing.
No snark here. I've discovered that the problems in my stories is that I hold back and distance myself from my characters. When something gets too difficult, I tend to fall into passive voice and change the point of view to make it more comfortable. I'm on the look out for it now.

8. Began my queries (several of them) with a rhetorical question.
This one might go over with some agents and publishers, but Nathan Bransford is one of the agents that rants about this. "NOOOOOOOOO rhetorical questions!!!" This mistake reminded me that research is King! Knowing about the agent/publisher I'm subbing to will keep me from making glaring errors.

9. Posted on Miss Snark without reading her blog and knowing what "nitwittery" is
Luckily, I don't think I said anything stupid. Right? Right? Okay. Don't answer that.

10. I waited to get involved in Instant Messaging.
It took Crystal Jordan and Dayna Hart months to get me to get Trillian and start talking to people. Now, I enjoy it immensely. I've brainstormed, edited and chatted my way to better writing.

11. Put my writing in a box.
I allowed myself to become a "rule follower". Technically, my writing was good, but I was so afraid to break the "rules" that I struggled. I've been working on getting out of the box and really write the stories that are in my head. Dayna and Crystal have helped me so much with this and my editor at The Wild Rose Press, Diana Carlile. They've all made reach a little deeper for more in my writing.

12. Giving a harsh opinion on a public forum.
This is just plain stupid. It's one thing to give an opinion. It's another thing to rant and rave about something that might come back and bite me in the ass professionally. Luckily, I'm not a very big fish in the small epublishing pond, so I didn't even make a ripple. And no, I'm not repeating what I said or where. LOL.

13. Getting uptight about blog comments, sales and popularity.
In the long run, I'm getting experience that I can't get any other way. Whether I get 0 comments or 40, I'm still going to be who I am. Believing that the amount of comments or number of sales is going to change my life is ridiculous. It took a while to get over it. I guess I "like to be liked". I swear, someday I'm going to do a workshop or something and title it after the famous Sally Field's line. "You like me. You really like me." LOL.

There are tons more. Like submitting a query on a blog post at Jessica Faust because she might crit it. (Only I wrote it and didn't run it by my cps. Bad writer Jen, bad.)
Or getting involved in edrama. Or reviewing a writer friend's book and getting the details WRONG. (I caught it before I submitted it). Or.....nevermind. You get the picture.
Care to share?

Links to other Thursday Thirteens!
1. (leave your link in comments, I’ll add you here!)

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

posted at 12:05 PM by Jennifer :: 24 comments

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Whiskey Wednesday 5/2/07

You know, writing is a catch 22. It is. To really get a readers attention, I have to let my guts hang out. I'm writing a scene for "Still Waters" that involves a funeral scene. Initially, I wrote that scene to purge some of the angst around my own father's death. So, I wrote it in the hero's point of view thinking I wouldn't have to deal with the pain that was still fresh. But the scene didn't flow and the book fell flat. What a surprise.
I rewrote the scene yesterday.
I was surprised to find that the pain is right there, right in my gut. Even after five years, the emotion is strong and lurking. It wasn't a pleasant surprise. My stomach is still sore from writing it.
Revealing my own personal stuff in my writing is unavoidable and difficult. I thought I'd feel better.
Maybe after a couple of shots I'll feel better. LOL. I'm kidding. I'll wait until Saturday night.
Oh, and updating on Talladega as promised. Jeff Gordon did indeed take the checkered flag. Unfortunately, he broke Dale Earnhardt's win record on Dale Earhardt Day. Poor guy. The fans threw garbage on the track to let Jeffy know they weren't pleased. I hate that. I'm all for driver loyalty, but come on, it's not hard to be happy for the guy who deserves to win.
I'm not a big Jeff Gordon fan. He reminds me too much of the quarterback at school with the cheerleader girlfriend and an ego the size of Canada (not his pecker). But he drove his heart out and showed some class in his win.
I was actually hoping that Jeff Burton might catch a break, but no such luck. Gotta love Talladega.
Next week is Richmond. I'll refrain from giving you the blow by blow there. LOL.

posted at 4:30 PM by Jennifer :: 2 comments

What Would You Do?

My hubby wants me to buy a Wonder Woman costume. (Don't ask. I'm not telling) Tell me, would you buy one for your significant other? LOL. Again, to much information huh? I loved Wonder Woman. I just thought the Steve guy (was that his name?) was an idiot. I REALLY want the Truth Lasso. Imagine the fun I could have!!!!
What costume would you be willing to buy? A French maid costume? Leather? Is this too much for a writer's blog? I probably should have left this for Whiskey Wednesday. LOL.

posted at 7:41 AM by Jennifer :: 2 comments

| maystar designs |