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Yeah, I’ve been out of the loop for awhile. Haven’t been anything other than too busy to write. That’s not the thing you wanna be when you are a writer LOL

My latest book is coming out as soon as I finish reading the 2nd proof. I love the cover: it’ s a composite photo that includes an eye. Guess who’s eye? Pops from an old WWII picture when he was coming off a field in Guam.

There’s a treasure hunt starting around 10-26-09 involving 2nd Wind Publishing. Basically, it’s a Blog Hop. My blog will be included. Good luck, have fun, try not to kill anyone.

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Our wonderful publisher, Second Wind Publishing, is hosting a three-day book signing in Winston-Salem, NC. Here’s the scoop on where I’ll be, unless I get lost LOL:

Friday, February 13, 2009
9-11 AM and 2-5 PM
Casanova’s
6275 Shallowford Rd
Lewisville, NC

Saturday, February 14, 2009
1 PM – 4 PM
Krankie’s
125 S. Stratford Rd
Winston-Salem, NC

Sunday, February 15, 2009
1 PM – 4 PM
Angelina’s Teas
125 S. Stratford Rd
Winston-Salem, NC

The only bad thing about each of these venues is the amount of chocolate available that I won’t be able to resist. I need to find someone else to blame for my weakness. Mike. I’ll blame Mike. It’s your fault, hoss, when I gain ten pounds in three days.

(Originally posted on SecondWindPub on October 25, 2008)

Music is an absolute must when I’m writing. Because I suffer from tinnitus, it’s important to have something to drown out the zillion crickets in my head when I’m trying to think about what I’m penning.

In addition, the mood of the music is critical. The best tempo for my suspense is, of course, heavy metal. There’s something about the deep, primal beat of the drum and the mysterious wail of the bass that feeds the story I’m writing.

 

As with music, tempo is important in storytelling. I try to keep an underlying steady beat throughout the story, with crescendos matching climatic scenes.

 

Dark and heavy with small glimmers of light populate my suspense stories. The music I listen to matches the mood of the scenes: Avenged Sevenfold, Pulse Ultra, Stone Sour, Godsmack, and Papa Roach are some of the more frequent bands I listen to when I want the story to pulsate with sinister tension.

 

When the mood calls for it, I switch gears. If a character becomes lost in a memory of love long gone or a life undone, I myself become reflective. This type of mood change calls for something retro and my pick of the pack would have to be Steve Perry. Other bands that bring back the good old days include Heart, Roxette, Fleetwood Mac, to name just a few

 

For me, there is a close relationship between music and writing. Music tells a story, whereas a story can be told with an underlying beat. The smooth transitions in musical chords mimic smooth transitions in writing.

 

I write stories with music as a driving force that helps me focus. Friends and family do not understand how I can write with the cacophony of noise. I cannot see how I can write without it.

Here I go again. The weekend is half over and I have yet to reach my targeted writing goal.

Television is the culprit. It sits there, all innocent and benign, but once I turn it on, it hooks me and reels me in like a captive fish.

There are too many shows I like to watch. Of all things that really feed my addiction, ION has started showing repeats of Boston Legal. It doesn’t matter if I’ve seen the same episode a dozen times within the last month – I’m going to watch it again.

Boston Legal and My Big Fat Greek Wedding. When either are on, I am worthless. One Saturday a while back, some station was showing MBFGW all day. All Day, mind you – I didn’t do much that day.

And, of course, the steady favorites like Law & Order are always on one station or another. I have seen every episode of every L & W (orginal and spin-offs), but I can trick myself into thinking that I need to watch at least the first ten minutes – just to make sure it’s not an episode I may have missed. After ten minutes, well, I just have to watch it again because, well, darnit, it was such a good episode.

It works every time.

I tried locking myself in a separate room to write, away from the television. I thought if I could get away from the enticer, than I could get some serious writing done. My reasoning was no television equals more productivity.

All I ended up doing was watching episodes of Life from NBC’s 24/7 Video on my laptop.

So, now I’m trying to find a compromise between my television addiction and my need to write. When I’m writing, I’m experimenting with the television sound off and the caption on, and the music going and headphones on.

Oh, dear. The entire eight hours of The Stand is about to come on, back to back. I’ve only seen it four or five times.

Maybe I missed something.