Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!

Hey, 2011.

Howdy. Glad to meet you.

2010 had its ups and downs and ups and downs.

But, you know, that's life.

No resolutions here.    

Reality always has a way of throwing a wrench into the well-oiled, smoothly humming cogs of your imaginary plans.

Like...the cable going out and internet access down for a week when you were expecting your first edits ever. Or the geyser in your bathroom flooding your home when you'd already carefully allotted that weekend time to romance writing. Or a family member falling down and breaking a hip when you'd promised an agent a partial...

Or, like actually looking forward to RWA national for once. Except that this year it's in New York City. Nowhere near a beach or a theme park. Like how many other work days of my life? I really want to use up vacation days to go into Manhattan, as if I'm working? Yes, of course, some of you will say. It is work. It is in furtherance of the career. But I put in pretty long hours at the career that actually pays the bills. So for now at least, I am just not seeing  it that way.

Change my mind, 2011.

Bring it on, baby!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Looking Back

      My year started out this way:
      Highlight of every Sunday night was visiting the New York State Department of Labor web site to claim unemployment benefits.
      Went for lots of looooooong walks.
      During the course of which...the muse was fully exercised. (Not to mention exorcised.)
      Finished the full-length book of my heart at long last. Totally in love with the hero. Started writing the sequel, the next brother's story.  In love with him too.
      The book of my heart began meeting its water-torture-fate-worse-than-death. Drip-Drip-Drip-Teeth-Kick-Repeat.
      Started writing a little Halloweeny story that turned into a paranormal novella, Dream Voyager. Totally fell in love with the hero, Rafe.
      Started a blog with the same name. (Dream Voyagers, not Rafe.)
      Finished Dream Voyager and sent it out into the wide world.
      Started a Regency novella, entitled Healing Hearts. Totally fell in love with the hero, a viscount and Peninsula War veteran named Adam.
      Tried my hand at copyediting. (Failed miserably, since I wanted to rewrite, like, everything. Instead of, you know, just insert/delete commas.)
      Finished Healing Hearts, the Regency novella and sent it out into the wide world.
      Temporarily abandoned the sequel to the doomed book of my heart and started writing a romantic suspense, Cole in Her Stocking. Totally fell in love with the hero: Cole. (Well, you know, duh. Did you really think I spelled that badly?)
      Became president of my RWA chapter.
      Returned to work at the occupation for which I actually have been schooled and trained.
      Put in looooooooong hours.
      No more walking.
      Stopped going to meetings of my longtime critique group.
      Contracted Healing Hearts with Carina Press.
      Acquired a nom de plume. (Which occasionally feels more like a nom de guerre.)  Oh, what? You thought it said Taryn Kincaid on my birth certificate?
      Was asked by another publisher to heat up the already steamy Dream Voyager.
      Acquired my wonderful, funny, knowledgable, patient Wild Rose Press editor who guided me through the scarlet world of writing erotic romance.
      Was asked to change Rafe's name. Oh, okay. Eventually settled on Ryck. In hindsight, Ryck Van Winkle works much, much better! (And I'm still totally in love with him.)
      Contracted Dream Voyager, now an erotic paranormal novella entitled Sleepy Hollow Dreams, to The Wild Rose Press.
      (So much for the blog!)     
      Acquired my wonderful Carina Press editor who, like Mark Twain,  knows "The difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug."
      Got involved with publishers' loops, writers' loops, blogs-blogs-and-more-blogs.
      Also, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads. (What else ya got?)
      Got cover art for Sleepy Hollow Dreams and squeeeeed all over the place.
      Saw Sleepy Hollow Dreams published! (Rushed out in time for Halloween.)
      Resigned the presidency of my RWA chapter. (The chapter does not seem fully cognizant of this fact.)
     Got cover art for Healing Hearts.  More squeeeeeeeeing. Well? Isn't it pretty?
     Saw first non-friend Goodreads rating of Sleepy Hollow Dreams and was perplexed, since there was no comment. Rater "friended" me.
    Saw first non-friend review of Sleepy Hollow Dreams and was confused by the reviewer's confusion.
    Surprised, pleased, thrilled, shocked when someone says they loved Sleepy Hollow Dreams. Nervous when they are silent.
    Decided to own Brendan Behan's notion that "there is no such thing as bad publicity except your own obituary." 
    True dat.
    Lost some longtime real-life friends. Reconnected with others. Acquired some shiny new internet friends. Had hopes raised, then dashed, then raised, then dashed. Then raised.
    The yin.
    The yang.
    The good, the bad, the ugly, the serendipitous.

    Spent much of the year running around like a headless chicken.
    Healing Hearts comes out in February.

    And also for next year:  Will try to do better.
    Will try to have a plan.
    Job One: Finish Cole in Her Stocking.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Here Comes the Sun!

Well, it's official.

Winter is upon us. The winter solstice has arrived with a lunar eclipse. And the shortest day of the year.

Which means, of course, the days get longer here on out.

And summer is just around the corner!

Yes, I know. Bah. Humbug. 

Most of you are still in holiday frenzy mode. 

But I'm looking forward to the New Year, the longer days, the warm, beaming rays. And not having to worry about taking my car in to get the heater fixed!

I am totally ready to drag out a Yule log and burn out the cold, bitter heart of winter, as the ancient pagans did.

Or, you know, scarf down some Buche de Noel.

Here's one recipe from


2 cups heavy cream 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 6 egg yolks 1/2 cup white sugar 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract 1/8 teaspoon salt 6 egg whites 1/4 cup white sugar confectioners' sugar for dusting Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Line a 10x15 inch jellyroll pan with parchment paper. In a large bowl, whip cream, 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar, 1/2 cup cocoa, and 1 teaspoon vanilla until thick and stiff. Refrigerate. In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat egg yolks with 1/2 cup sugar until thick and pale. Blend in 1/3 cup cocoa, 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla, and salt. In large glass bowl, using clean beaters, whip egg whites to soft peaks. Gradually add 1/4 cup sugar, and beat until whites form stiff peaks. Immediately fold the yolk mixture into the whites. Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes in the preheated oven, or until the cake springs back when lightly touched. Dust a clean dishtowel with confectioners' sugar. Run a knife around the edge of the pan, and turn the warm cake out onto the towel. Remove and discard parchment paper. Starting at the short edge of the cake, roll the cake up with the towel. Cool for 30 minutes. Unroll the cake, and spread the filling to within 1 inch of the edge. Roll the cake up with the filling inside. Place seam side down onto a serving plate, and refrigerate until serving. Dust with confectioners' sugar before serving.
Personally, I'm not known for my adventures in confection. (That's what bakeries are for!) But every now and then I've been known to dip my elbows into bowls of chocolate or brown sugar.

Anyone have any favorites?

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Happy Holidays!

No Six Sentence Sunday for me this week, kids.

Have a great holiday and a Happy New Year.

Here's a big smoochie for any of you happening by.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Carina Press blogs

The Carina Press authors have started some new subgenre blogs!

The kinks are still being worked out on some of them, but the historical authors blog is up and active at Romancing the Past.

Today is my turn to take the blog for a spin.   So come on over and visit me and tell me what inspires you!

If you get a chance, please also stop by Not Your Usual Suspects, the Carina Press authors' mystery, suspense and romantic suspense blog.

And look for Here Be Magic, the paranormal, fantasy and steampunk blog, coming soon!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Six Sentence Sunday 12-12-2010

A little more from my WIP,  Cole in Her Stocking for Six Sentence Sunday.

"Should I wonder about your masculinity?”

“Do you need to, baby?”

“Maybe your sanity," she sniffed.

Her scent wrapped him in its beckoning embrace and he wished there was enough light in the Escalade to let him see the ripe plum shading her cheekbones. He wanted to run his lips over the blush that rose from her throat, dip lower to taste the swelling flesh of her breasts. Keeping his focus on the icy road ahead and gripping the wheel until his knuckles whitened, Cole recited major league batting stats in his head--anything to keep from dwelling on all the places he burned to plant lush, scalding kisses.

And be sure to check out the other Six Sentence Sunay authors!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Six Sentence Sunday 12-05-2010

This week, a little Six Sentence snippet from my WIP, Cole in Her Stocking. 

      Cole’s mouth crushed hers, his potent kiss delivering a burst of electric fire that sizzled through her, melting her completely. He tilted her head and angled his mouth,  hard and slashing, his tongue tracing the outline of her lips. He tasted like the coffee he’d swilled on the two-hour drive from the city, but hotter and more exciting--a double shot of pure caffeine spiked with single malt Irish whisky.
      Her thirst for him ratcheted out of control and she could not drink enough, her hands traveling from his hair to his shoulders, her fingers digging into thick muscle.

     “Holy cow, Brannigan,” she murmured, her lips vibrating against his.

     “I know,” he said. “Shut up.”

My free Christmas read, I'll Be Home for Christmas, is up for anyone looking for something a little more warm and fuzzy.