Monday, November 26, 2012

Cover ART is here!!!


I finally have my cover for My Roommate's a Jock? Well, Crap! I love it! I also love that Cole is wearing my shirt! hehhehee

What do you think?

It’s easy to become cynical when life never goes your way.

And then have the bit... Cole Reid has been a social recluse since he was fifteen, when he was outed by his high school baseball team. Since then, his obsessive-compulsive behavior and sarcastic nature have driven away most of the population, and everyone else hates him because he’s gay. As he sees it, he’s bound to repulse any prospective friends, let alone boyfriends, so why bother?

By the time Cole enters college, he’s become an anal-retentive loner—but it’s not a problem until his roommate graduates and the housing department assigns Ellis Montgomery to move in with Cole. Ellis is messy, gorgeous, straight, and worst of all, a jock!

During a school year filled with frat buddies, camping expeditions, and meddling parents, Cole and Ellis develop a friendship that turns Cole’s glass-half-empty outlook on its head. There must be more to Ellis than a fun-loving jock--and maybe Cole’s reawakening libido has rekindled his hope for more than camaraderie.

I don't have a link to DSP yet. It is not listed as a "coming soon" until it actually has a final draft of the MS. When I KNOW the release date, I will tell you!

BUT.... Can I get away with an excerpt release? Maybe....

Excerpt from My Roommate's a Jock? Well, Crap!


Chapter 1
A World in Decay
Someone told me I’m a cynical fatalist, but I prefer the term realist. I guess I tend to see things of this world in a slow process of decay, either from a scientific perspective—since I’m a physics major—or from personal experience. The way I see it, that guy Murphy had it right every time. Do you know him? He’s the one who wrote Murphy’s Law: “If anything can go wrong, it will.” It’s actually a quote of the fourth law of thermodynamics, and the originator is unknown. (I read that on Wikipedia, but that’s beside the point.)
The long and short of it is, things go wrong in my life—always have.
It should not have surprised me when my roommate of the past three years decided to graduate and move to Texas with his girlfriend. The nerve of him! Jonathan was the best roommate ever. He was neat, and quiet, and never had sex on the couch—that I know of. He tolerated my quirks and always made me tea on Sunday mornings.
I miss him.
The summer was boring after he left.
Who was going to play canasta with me? Or build puzzles? Or realize that I needed chocolate as I studied for every test whether I asked for it or not?
I trudged around campus in a state of despair for days after he left.
Okay, I realize that the term “days” doesn’t make me sound very hopeless, but being the realist that I am made me see that milling around with my chin resting on my chest was only going to get me run over if I happened to miss the sidewalk and wander into traffic. I moped for an appropriate amount of time and then typed up a flyer for the campus bulletin board: “Roommate Wanted.”
I never needed to find a roommate before.
Back when I enrolled at this college, Jonathan Keys practically stumbled over me in the housing line. The college had just acquired three more single-family homes on the edge of campus grounds and opened them for occupancy. First come, first serve. There was a minimal upcharge over regular dorm fees, but the perks were worth it. Guidelines for tenancy were minimal as long as the house was maintained properly—which basically meant that if you trashed it, you got kicked out—but otherwise, those who lived there governed themselves. No RA! (Resident Assistant for those not aware of dorm-speak.)
The house I was “lucky” enough to make it into had six bedrooms, a kitchen, a living room, a dining room, and three baths. Four of the other guys assigned to the same residence were sports fanatics and one was a math major. I loathe jocks! Not that you can lump all sports guys together and assume they know everything about sports, but my point is, I had nothing in common with those guys. Jon was the math major.
We made it through one semester of parties and hooting at the television during football season before a suite in a neighboring house opened up. Jon knew the housing overlord and requested the suite before it was open to the general (college) public. It was so much nicer!
This house was two houses down the street, so moving was a breeze. The layout was also different from most campus housing. Instead of one floor of bedrooms and then living space on the bottom floor, this unit had three floors of two bedrooms and living space combined. I wasn’t sure about the efficiency of that design; perhaps it was three rental apartments at one time before the campus purchased it. I didn’t know.
Whatever the explanation, Jon and I had it made! The top floor was just ours—two bedrooms, one bath, a kitchen, and a living area to share.
And then my buddy Jonathan graduated in May.
It was the worst day of my life.
I kind of didn’t mention to anyone that I was living alone at this point because if I did, the housing department would peruse the list of “standby” students and assign someone to my perfect little corner of the campus. I wanted to avoid that. I thought if I advertised in places that promised interesting prospects—i.e., the physics building and the library—then I would hopefully avoid the types of people I dreaded living with: jocks! Ahem. *clears throat*
The plan was going okay, I guess. I had a few guys call me up, but I was looking for someone who reminded me of Jon—someone smart and funny, and who didn’t care if I watched History Channel on Friday night. Two guys inquired. I just didn’t feel right saying yes.
In retrospect, I should have at least met with them instead of shooting them down over the phone, but my heart just wasn’t in it. I was still moping about Jon moving. I was about to put up another flyer in the electronics lab when the housing director stopped me. “Isn’t there an opening in your building?”
I looked up, bewildered, blinking as the sun burned into my retinas. “Um….” I hesitated. “Who’s asking?”
He gave me a look that told me I shouldn’t be so stupid. “I am, Cole. You know I need to fill that space as soon as possible. You should’ve contacted me weeks ago. You know there’s a list at least fifty students long who would love to live in those houses instead of the dorms.”
“It’s not my fault he moved out early.”
I sighed and scuffed my shoe on the ground. Of course I knew he was right. “Sorry. I guess I was stalling. Do you think I could look for my own roommate?” I gave him the most pathetic pout I could muster and tipped my head to the side. I hoped he would give in. My pathetic look always worked on my mom. The term “puppy-dog eyes” didn’t hold a candle to my expression. Of course he caved.
“Okay—but only because you keep the neatest apartment on campus. God help me if I assigned someone who messed up your routine and dropped Cheetos on the carpet.”
I smiled and said heartily, “Thanks, Stan. You’re the best!”
“But, Cole, I can only give you six weeks to decide on someone. By August 15 the other bedroom in your apartment needs to be filled. Got it?”
I cringed internally. I hated deadlines. I know, I have them all the time with projects and exams, but having a deadline that was not school related made me nervous. “August 15, got it!” I assured Stan the housing man with a nod.
He turned and walked off, and I was left with a cold sense of dread that whoever applied to live with me would turn out to be a slob, or a drum major, or the worst of the worst—a jock! I wasn’t looking forward to it.
So, I made a flyer.
Male roommate wanted to share a two-bedroom apartment off campus. Must be clean, friendly, quiet, and study-oriented. Preferably not a freshman. Must love books, games, and spy movies. To apply call: 717-782-1969 and ask for Cole.
I posted the flyer all over campus. I thought for sure I’d have loads of inquiries. I was so dead wrong. During the summer, students went home. During the summer, students were not thinking of housing unless they were freshman and didn’t have housing. No one called except one girl. Did she not read the flyer? I am not living with a girl. I had enough of that growing up with an older sister. Still, I was disappointed. Not even a nibble. Did I come off too controlling on the flyer?
Needless to say, Stan the housing man came knocking on my door August 15. “Did you find someone?” Stan asked.
He really was a great guy; I couldn’t fault him for doing his job. “No,” I huffed, crossing my arms over my chest in a gesture of aggravation. No matter what, I wasn’t going to be happy with whoever he picked from his list, so I thought I’d start off right with full-out petulance.
“Cole, come on,” he pleaded, trying to coax me to see the bright side. “We’ve known each other for three years. I think I know you pretty well by now. No one else would have noticed the lab was painted two shades of gray except you. No one but you caught the typo on the theater marquee last year. And you are the only I guy I know who can quote both The Bourne Identity and P.S. I Love You word for word.” He lifted his eyebrows and grinned.
I exhaled noisily. “Fine. Just… don’t pick a jock, okay? You know I’m not good at sports, and watching football all winter might kill me.”
He chuckled. “I can’t promise anything. The list is long, and I have to pick someone today. I have my job instructions too, you know.”
I shook his hand, and he left the apartment.
I closed the door and leaned against it, looking at my little home away from home.
Jon and I picked out the green sofa the first year. The coffee table was sitting by a dumpster in town, and he refinished it for me when I said I disliked the color of the stain. My mom gave us the Oriental rug and the Van Gogh print that hung by the breakfast bar. We bought the television together, and he said I could keep it when he moved out. Things would change soon. Maybe the new guy would hate the dishes or spill sugar on the kitchen floor?
I started to panic. I was good at working myself into a tizzy. I flattened my body against the door, closed my eyes, and took deep breaths. I can do this, I can do this, I repeated to myself. Change is good.
Twenty minutes later I got a call from Stan—he’d found someone.
“Seriously?” I asked in a higher than normal pitch. I rested one palm on the kitchen counter, and my wandering eyes noticed a raisin hiding behind the flour bin. What is that doing there?
“Yeah,” Stan said. “I told you I have a long list.”
I tossed the raisin in the trash. “Is he a freshman?” He had to be!
“Does he wear Hawaiian shirts?” Why I asked that, I’ll never know—it just slipped out.
“Does he know any three-syllable words?”
“I believe he does. He’s an English major.”
“Hmm.” I contemplated the possibility that Stan had picked someone I’d approve of as I strolled into the living room and sat on my sofa. An English major was promising. “What’s his name?”
“Ellis?” I know it came out bad, the way I questioned his name, but it wasn’t like I was talking to Ellis about his unusual name. I’d never known anyone by that name. Ellis. It sounded nerdy. Maybe I really would luck out with a great roommate. I did with Jonathan.
Stan then confirmed the name again as if I wasn’t listening. “Ellis. Don’t worry. I’m sure he’ll be fine. I spoke to his mother today.”
“His mother? I thought you said he wasn’t a freshman.”
“He’s not. He’s a junior, but he’s been commuting from home because housing is so expensive. This year he sold his car to pay for housing and applied. Listen, Cole, I got another call coming in. Don’t worry. He’ll work out.”
Sold his car? That sounds desperate. Then again, if I still lived with my parents, I would probably turn desperate too. “Any idea when he’ll be here?”
“Should be anytime now. He said he was leaving home thirty minutes ago with a buddy.”
“What?” I panicked, looking around frantically for anything lying on the floor or inexplicably out of place.
“Good-bye, Cole.” Stan politely yet abruptly hung up.
A roommate. He was on his way. I could do this.
Someone knocked at my door and I jumped.
Shit! I’m not ready yet!
I set the phone in its cradle on the breakfast bar and walked over to the door. I smelled my pits—passable. I fingered my hair and gave my body a good wiggle to release tension right before I took a hold of the handle and reminded myself to breathe. Everything would be all right. I turned the handle. This was the moment of truth.
A bright white smile greeted me as I opened the door. “Hi. My name’s Ellis Montgomery. Are you Cole? I was told you had a room available.”
I know he was speaking, but my brain shut off the moment I looked into the most beautiful blue eyes I’d ever seen in my life.
Oh boy, am I in trouble!

You will have to buy the book to read chapter 2 :)  muahhahaaaha   I'm so evil.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Murphy's Law

Wikipedia defines Murphy’s Law as: an adage or epigram that is typically stated as: "Anything that can go wrong will go wrong". I use this in My Roommate’s a Jock because it fits Cole’s character so well. Wikipedia also says: it’s actually a quote of the fourth law of thermodynamics and the originator is unknown.

Why do I tell you this? Has my life gone all wrong? Not exactly. More complicated and frustrating possibly but not “all wrong.” Over the weekend I got an e-mail from my editor (the one who has The Cost of Loving) and she says, “Here is what I have done so far.” She got through chapter 16 or something and wanted to me to see what she did. (and FYI, there are 37 chapters!) and oh, btw, you need to rewrite chapter 16…

I say: Thank you. I'll get right on it!... Re write?  -argh!
She replies: Sorry, Kiddo. Write, and rewrite are the name of the game!! You can do it.

Am I happy with that? NO! It slows the whole process down. Will I do it? YES, she came up with some great questions for what was happening in the scene. She’s looking for accuracy and punch. This is action packed (lol, for me anyway.) and she wants Matt to shine. So… I’m rewriting! That in itself will take a while. Chapter 16 is tough!

So now I am working through edits of The Cost of Loving, which are more extensive than My Roommate’s a Jock? Well, Crap! AND I’m trying to write names Can Never Hurt Me. I’m almost at 30k on that one and I don’t want to stop all together. Ideas are in my head! So where do I find a way to add time to the day, or clone myself? Ideas?

Hang in there people. Things are happening, just slower than I’d like. Pray for my sanity!!

Meanwhile, When Love is Not Enough is sitting stagnant. I don't think people are reading it. This is a sad revelation for me as a writer, that something that came on strong (to me anyway) has fizzled out in a year. I'm hoping readers of My Roommate's a Jock (who haven't read WLINE) will want to read my other stuff and maybe I'll get a few more sales. 'Cause you know, I don't want that book to die. It meant to much to me to write.

Also, when is an appropriate time to release an excerpt? I don't have a cover yet. Maybe when I get a cover for My Roommate's a Jock, I'll blog an excerpt.


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Get the T-shirt!

LOL... I have NO patience! AT ALL! Like, none!!

I  was messing around today making a t-shirt. I uploaded one design. I haven't ordered one for myself yet so I have no idea of the quality or anything. I used because they seemed more versatile than Cafepress but I may just open a "store" in both spots. It can't hurt. For today, it's on Zazzle. (*)

<a href="*">See my store at Zazzle</a>

The picture to the right of my blogpost (if you see it via blogspot) with have a link attached. I think. Otherwise, here is a picture of the sample shirt.

Only... This is grey, the one I have on the website is white. But I think there are color options. This is a work in progress. I'm trying to offer different items etc. If you know any science-geeky, gay, college guys, please recommend my shirts :) Please. 

For those who may NOT know, my novel My Roommate's a Jock? Well, Crap! will be coming out soon from Dreamspinner Press. (No release date yet.) This shirt goes with the character Cole Reid. (He's a physics major who loves wacky t-shirts!)

Not sure what else to say about that. I ahve another shirt working but lack time to upload it.

I'm also writing!


Saturday, November 10, 2012

Current News

>> I'm writing. << I wrote 2,333 words yesterday for Names Can Never Hurt Me. I am also waiting on the second round of edits for My Roommate's a Jock. The Cost of Loving IS with my editor, but she is going slower than I desire. I don't want to think of that one coming out AFTER the first of the year, so I am still crossing my fingers.

Basically, this is what I'm up to!

I have this feeling that it will all coming crashing together in one lump. Like I'll get both manuscripts to approve edits in the same week while I am also on a huge roll writing the next one. Things happen like that right? I also need to start getting serious about the T-shirts I want to sell that go with My Roommate's a Jock. Everybody wants one, right? LOL I'll be e-mailing my graphic designer about the final tweaks on the design and I'll get them on line to buy. I MAY also look into a different place to sell. I WAS going to use Cafe Press because I think it is well known. Have you heard of it? It pays royalties which makes my life easier as I don't have to collect taxes or anything. BUT, their take is $18 per shirt. If I choose to make the official price $20, then I make $2.00 per T-shirt. So keep that in mind. Tell friends about them! I will make very little but I love the concept of having a T-shirt line that goes with a book!!! As soon as I hear about the book release date, or at least get a cover, I'll get the shirt design out there for the public to see. (But I DID copyright the image.)

For all those "following" my reviews... Sorry, no reviews coming any time soon. When I'm desperate to write, I can't read. I read for inspiration, I read to learn how to right better, I read to see what readers like to read. But when I am hot in writing, I can't distract my brain from MY characters. So that is where I am; I'm writing! And waiting. (on the current submissions with editors.)

Remember I'm on Twitter

Monday, November 5, 2012

If I was born on the frontier, I'd be dead by now.

OMG! I have electricity back!

Power out in my house for one week. At first, it's like, "Cool, I'm camping, but in my house!"I got the Coleman stove going, the camping coffee pot, and a nifty headlamp so I can see as I walk around. Day two rolls in, then day three.... Not so much fun anymore. No electric means no water and no heat. Don't be too worried, I have a wood stove so the house was warm. I also live up on a sort of hill, so there isn't normally a danger of flooding. Therefore, I was warm and dry. AND WITHOUT TECHNOLOGY! I discovered how much I like the convenience of Internet and cell phone use. I had neither unless I drove up the street and searched for a signal. Not fun!

Yes, I'm whining. It's difficult not to whine. It is not like I was really put out; that is not what I'm saying. I am just appreciating how much I like LIGHTS and a toilet that flushes!

I have to say though, I have amazing friends! I showered several times at one friend's house and did some laundry. And today I went to another friend's house to do the same thing. I also don't own a generator, because power has never gone out here for more than a day. This time it was off a week! My neighbor lent me a generator to keep the fridge cold. So, I had food! No worries there.

But as my luck has it, I got my MS for My Roommate's a Jock the Friday before the hurricane. So here I am editing on battery power and charging the laptop in my car!!! I was mainly stressed because I had a deadline! Don't worry, I got it in on time :) I went to another friend's house and used the Internet to finish edits and e-mail it back.

What this storm proved to me was I have AWESOME friends! I mean seriously!!! Ever time one of them found out I had no power, he or she told me to drop on by and make myself at home. I actually have never felt more loved. It's been great! I have no real complaints. YES> power was out a week. But also YES> I was fine.

I actually got tears in my eyes when I heard about the woman who lost her children. I felt sick about that. It's horrible. Not to mention all the people who lost their homes and had to go without food and heat etc... It was very tragic. Thinking about all those people made me realize how good I had it anyway. I had loads of people taking me in, and feeding me, and letting me shower in their homes. I am not alone and I LOVE my friends!!! I feel bad for those who are not as fortunate as I am. I hope that they will find people in this tragedy that will help and love them like my friends have toward me. No one should be alone and have no where to turn. It is terrible. :(

So, yeah, I say that if it was the frontier, I would be dead. That is mainly because hauling water up from the stream down the street to flush the toilet is tiresome. Heating hot water on the Coleman stove to wash dishes I made (not thinking the power would be out so long) is also tedious. Going to bed at 8pm because it is too dark to do anything it just ridiculous! And if I had to go out and hunt for some food instead of ordering pizza, well then I would have starved. I am whining only because going without power for a week is hard! I will try to remember that the next time people around me are out. I need to show compassion like those around me showed me. What goes around, comes around, right? Well, I got lots of love thrown my way. My turn will come.

And so will yours!

Take the time to think of those who lost everything. And the next time someone needs your help, I urge you not to turn them away.

Thank you to ALL MY FRIENDS!!

I hope to get back to writing, now that I have electric and Internet!