Monday, May 23, 2011

Laurie's Journal

I haz Kindle!

My Kindle arrived Wednesday and I wasted no time downloading some of the intriguing books on my wish list, among them Barbara Elsborg’s AN ORDINARY GIRL, Diane Dooley’s BLUE GALAXY, and, of course, Jennifer L. Hart’s THE MISADVENTURES OF THE LAUNDRY HAG: SKELETONS IN THE CLOSET which she told me about in my request for Kindle titles last week. [And see “Discoveries” for yet another find.] See? Ya’ll missed your chance for an easy sale. :)

But wait, maybe not. I’ll make that offer a retread. Post an irresistible blurb in the comments that intrigues me and I guarantee you a sale. It doesn’t necessarily have to be SFR (though that’s a plus) -- I read everything from historical to contemporary erotica. It can be e-pubbed or self-pubbed, long or short, YA or adult only. Hey, it doesn’t even have to be your book. Recommend a favorite and I’ll give those a look, too.

I also ordered the blog subscription to THE GALAXY EXPRESS and promptly caught up on a week’s worth of great Skiffy Rommer reading in one sitting.

I heart my Kindle!!!

But I did have one disappointment.

I wanted to order THE OUTBACK STARS by Sandra McDonald in the worst way -- still my all-time favorite SFR and now out of print -- and it pained me to learn it’s not available in Kindle format. (Wahhh!)

I still have tons to learn on how to use this nifty little device to its full capacity, but we’re off to a great partnership.

Actions I've taken as a writer. Where am I? What am I doing?

I’m in waiting mode. Some of my GH11 sistah’s have signed with agents, sold books and received full requests from Golden Heart judges, but no word here yet. (It’s a bit of a longshot for paranormals. There were no requests last year.)

Almost all the action has been for Historicals, with one notable exception, my LERA sister and seven-time Golden Heart finalist, Robin Perini. In fact, she’s a double-finalist for 2011 in Contemporary Series Romance with Suspense/Adventure and one of her Golden Heart finalists – Stolen Lullabye – just sold to Harlequin Intrigue!

This is a huge, and well-deserved, achievement.

The Squeeze
Writers are sponges when it comes to soaking up writing tips and tricks. Here's where we squeeze out our sponges for the week. To be a writer is to be enrolled in one heckuva continuing education program.

You may be familiar with Robin Perini’s name from the many workshops she’s conducted or from the informative writer’s tips on her website. Recently, Robin helped me out with some excellent advice on how to write a short synopsis after I learned that agent Laurie McLean wants only a two-page [wha???] synopsis included with her queries. (How do you boil down a complex 110,000 word SFR with romance, cool tech, intrigue, military elements and politics to only two pages? Find out here.) All the very best to Robin as she launches what I’m sure will be a stellar career as an author.

New authors, cool web sites, great resources, great workshops, great online sites!

John Scalzi writes fan fiction? Who knew?

Oh, wow! I’ve gone international. In fact, all the GH11 finalists have. On a Portuguese blog, my Golden Heart finalists, er…Finalistas do Coracao de Ouro…are:

Os planetas exteriores por Laurie Verde
P2PC por Laurie R. Verde

I get the “Verde” but Laurie R? At any rate, it’s very cool to see my titles on a foreign web site.

And this week, we “discovered” Kiva—a beautiful, yellow Lab on death row at a local shelter. She was found wandering in the Salt Mission area many miles to the south of us and for reasons that have us mystified, no one had stepped forward to adopt this wonderful, young, healthy, sweet, housebroke, playful girl. When a friend contacted us about her, we immediately got in touch with the shelter, asked a few questions and offered to adopt her. She was a perfect passenger on the way home and after a little bit of uncertainty about stepping out into a brave new world, seemed thrilled with her new surroundings. She gets along great with the cats and our black Lab, Misty (who unfortunately doesn’t get along well with the cats), and seems to absolutely love her new home on the range. So we have a new addition to our household and a new favorite motto.

My favorite breed is Rescued!  (Graphic credit goes to CafePress thermos.)

It still brings tears to my ears to realize how close this very sweet girl came to an untimely end. I hope we’ll have pictures to post soon!

The latest buzz. Submission calls. New publishers. Industry changes. Inspirational sayings or quotes for writers. And our take on them.

I announced this on the SFR Brigade last weekend, but it bears repeating. The Rebecca Contest is very low (read that “what a great opportunity to final” low) on entries this year, as are so many contests. Some have interpreted this as a lack of interest with the advent of self-publishing. Hmmm, interesting, and it may be true but even so, wouldn’t it be a great thing to be able to tack some credentials on to your self-pubbed novels description, such as: Winner of the 2011 Rebecca. The final judges are some well known agents and editors.

For more about the Rebecca including links to the entry form and rules, click here.

Books we're reading and mini-reviews. Writers must read voraciously. Sometimes we find gems in the literary universe or sometimes certain elements of a book really speak to us (and our muses). Do we know about book giveaways? A big debut? We'll dish on those.

NYT Bestselling self-published author, Victorine Lieske, has her second novel out--THE OVERTAKING--and YES, it’s a SFR!

(I snapped this one up for my Kindle, too.)

Will she hit the NYT list again, this time with a SFR? Pretty exciting prospect. You can read an interview with Vicki that went up on the SFR Brigade blog today by clicking HERE.

Events, conferences, cons as well as Facebook, Twitter and blog events.

I’m still the high bidder on an honorary Ruby Slippered Sisterhood membership, with just eight days to go! I’m so excited, but don’t let that stop you from giving me some competition in the bidding. Wouldn’t you just love to wear that sparkly red ruby-slipper pin to Nationals this year, or any other conference? Have the opportunity to post on their very popular blog and receive critiques from some of their very talented members?

This is a huge opportunity to join one of the most dynamic group of Golden Heart Finalists ever, with their shared wealth of knowledge and advice…and it’s all for a very good cause.

And be sure to check out all the other wonderful offerings here:
Brenda Novak Online Auction for Diabetes Research

Ping Pong
We'll comment back to our co-bloggers on things they've posted on their journals.

@Donna Thanks to your journal entry last week, we’ve learned something else we have in common. Karl Urban. :)

@Sharon Thanks for answering my frantic text from the Apple store. (There’s no better advisor on new software than a current user.) I’m lovin’ my new Mac laptop.


  1. Busy, busy, busy, Laurie. I wonder if you've read Nalini Singh's Archangel books? I've got the first three. I think there might be a fourth out. I thought the first was fantastic - second very good, not so keen on the third but I can push you toward the first two no problem. Okay - not sci fi but I loved the world building in these books. There was just too much sex in the third - yes - and that's coming from me - whose books are full of it!

  2. Cool info!

    I didn't know Outback Stars was out of print! Bummer.

  3. Barbara, thanks for the Nalini Singh tip. I haven't yet read any of her work so I'll take a look at her series.

    Hi Anna. Yes, sadly, you can only find The Outback Stars through independent sellers now. Really wish it was available in digital format. It's such a great SFR novel.

  4. Aw, a new puppy! And all the other exciting stuff, too. Do you ever sleep? Jeez--overacheiver!


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Hosted by 5 Science Fiction Romance authors with 5 RWA Golden Heart finals between them. We aim to entertain with spirited commentary on the past, present, and future of Science Fiction Romance, our take on Science Fiction and SFR books, television, movies and culture.