Vixenwriter: A Seduction In Words

 

Wednesday, August 31, 2005


       It's Out!!

Finally, at long last, A Touch of Fae is out from Ellora's Cave so I hope you'll happen to get over there and pick your own copy up!

Tuesday, August 30, 2005


       Touch of Fae is coming!

In about twelve hours, Touch of Fae will be releasing from Ellora's Cave! A Touch of Fae is the second in the Witches Knot series and is the story of Em Charvez and Conchobar MacNessa. Plenty of the cast from Triad will be on the pages along with some new folks!

There's going to be a release party at my loop all day so please stop in to say hello!

Monday, August 29, 2005


       The Wicked Faerie is Coming

Hee! Only two days until you all get to meet Conchobar MacNessa, the ten thousand year old Faerie warrior and Counselor to the Queen of the Fae.

He's tall, six and a half feet tall, with long caramel colored hair with warrior braids at the temple. Piercing eyes, rippling muscles and the tips of his ears are erogenous zones. He's handy with his, er, sword, yeah, both of em!

When he's sent by the Queen to keep an eye on the human who is searching for one of the Fae's lost books he can't help but begin to fall for her.

Em Charvez is shy and sick of living in the shadow of the outgoing, vivacious women in her family. When she embarks on her trip to London, she does it with a plan. She's going to break free of the "shy, bookish, Em" sterotype!

And when she bumps into Con on the street neither of them will ever be the same!

Tomorrow, Sarah will be posting some excerpts at her list mom day at the EC list so keep an eye out!

On Wednesday, there'll be a big party at my loop, we just hit 100 members so it'll be a dual purpose celebration! Please come by for chances to win cool stuff and see some excerpts!

Sunday, August 28, 2005


       Good Day!

I'm making headway with Dark Justice - I've written 16,000 words in six days and I didn't write Friday at all. This is an excellent productive week for me. I'm over halfway done now and I think that if I stick to my schedule, I should be finished in two weeks (this allowing time for promo for TOF releasing on the 31st and being at Pearl Jam on the 1st and other editing on Second Chances).

I'm a happy camper!

Dark Justice
Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
34,000 / 65,000
(52.0%)

Saturday, August 27, 2005


       FAR Gives Triad TWO MORE Five Angel Reviews, Both Also RR!!

just got two more reviews from Fallen Angels and they both gave me five angels and made me a recommended read two more times! Thank you so much Michelle and Serena and FAR!!

Michelle says: Lauren Dane’s Triad is a lusty and dark tale of magic and the never-ending fight between good and evil. Lee’s been given a gift to help protect her world as she knows it, but she’s distracted by meeting the men of her dreams. Think sexy-contemporary-magic-shape shifter-vamp buffet and you’ve got this one pegged. I loved Lee’s character; she gave this piece realism and really endeared me to this story because of her innocence as to the depth of her power. Watching her learn herself was a rare treat, but seeing her come into her power was the real treasure of this tale. I’m going back for another read as soon as I can, and I know that I’ll enjoy Triad even more the second time. The way this one ended has some serious sequel potential, and I’ll be keeping my eyes peeled for another book furthering and/or expanding upon this storyline. Kudos to Lauren Dane on this hotly erotic story; I’m so pleased to award Triad with Five Angels and a Recommended Read!

Serena says: Triad is one of the best books I’ve read this year. I was so impressed with this book that I actually emailed Ms. Dane and asked her if this is a series. Luckily, A Touch of Fae will be out this fall. The characters are so wonderfully crafted that you’d think they are real people. Aiden is a dangerous yet loving man who is willing to do almost anything to be with Lee. Lee is such a strong woman. She knows what she has to do and will do it no matter what. Alex is a man you’d love to have on your side both literally and figuratively. These three people make such an amazing team that it was hard to let them go at the end of the story. I was also impressed with the supporting cast and cannot wait for the rest of the series. I highly recommend Triad for its richly written characters and compelling plot.

Thursday, August 25, 2005


       YAY! A Release Date For Second Chances

Hey everyone! I just got an email from my editor - Second Chances is releasing September 27! Wow, nearly a month after TOF - busy busy fall!

I'm releasing the same day as Eve Vaughn's Niccolo's Witch and Willa Okati's The Finest Line 3. A paranormal, a BDSM novel and what appears to be a fantasy - a good mix!

More as we get closer!


       Wall Banging

So what are yours? What are the things that show up in books that bring forth expletives from your lips and cause you to hurl it at the wall?

For me? Rape that's packaged as seduction of any kind. Rape is not sexy. There's a difference between a rape fantasy and "forced" seduction. I'd also like to point out that I wonder how often women who have rape fantasies have actually been raped. That tends to take the zing right of it.

Also, heroines who are stupid, whiny or otherwise annoying. The heroine and her "best friend" in one of the books in a very popular vampire romance series totally ruined the book (which was already marginal as it was). Gad, the woman was typical of those chicks in scary movies who insist on going around alone in the dark and her friend was an idiot too.

Heroes who are assholes. It's one thing to be arrogant. I have a soft spot for arrogant men who aren't dipshits. There are redeeming qualities about men who are arrogant for a reason. On the other hand, men who accuse the heroine of cheating or call her a whore or accuse her of getting pregnant by someone else - instant wallbanger. Elizabeth Lowell is the only writer who did this with a hero that I didn't toss the book when he did it. I hated him, but whatever magic she has, made it work. No one else I've read can do it.

Historical inaccuracies. Okay, this happens most frequently in regency romance. My thing is this: either just use the period as a backdrop and don't refer to it, or do your fecking homework! Words that wouldn't have existed in the time period, behavior that would not have been acceptable (like say, young unmarried women going around unescorted) - this is stuff that drives me nuts. It's also why I don't write historicals, I'm afraid I'll screw up, LOL.

General inaccuracies - and really, this is individual for each reader. My personal hot buttons are books with legal themes which are WRONG. Grrr. Don't have the heroine be a lawyer if you haven't bothered to even read about what the job is like. And PLEASE, no court room scenes unless you read about procedure. It's rare to have Perry Mason moments, and even more rare that the other side isn't going to object to totally leading questions and heresay. I'm sure nurses and teachers have their own peeves too.

Oh and I just have to add that there was one ebook I read that had a combo of the above issues making it into one of the most stupid, misogynistic pieces of drek I've ever read. Her facts about the presidency were totally wrong (like big time unconstitutionally wrong and this was a big part of the story). There was marital rape that the "heroine" actually thanked the "hero" for. There was massive infidelity on the part of both people. There was emotional and mental abuse. It was awful and I'll never pick up another book by this author again, ever. In fact, I try to avoid that epub because I have a hard time understanding how this book got through editing (neither of my editors would have let me get away with all of that)

What about you all?

Tuesday, August 23, 2005


       New Website Up!

Hey everyone! My new website is up and running, go check it out! I wanted something simple and elegant and not too busy but easily navigible and I think Crane and Crow delivered that in spades!

It's so purty!

Last night's WS chat was loads of fun (as per usual).

Save the Dates:
  1. August 31 - Touch of Fae releases
  2. September 9 - Touch of List Mom - I'm hosting the EC Readerboard for the day!
  3. September 15 - Maverick Authors take over FAR Chatters for the day!
  4. September 17th - New Issue of Vixenwriter
  5. September 21 - New Issue of Between The Sheets comes out
  6. September 23 - ERA hosts the EC Readerboard for the day - 10 authors, loads of fun!

At some point in late September, Second Chances will be releasing from Loose Id so keep an eye out for that as well! I'll keep y'all updated!

Monday, August 22, 2005


       The Work

So this weekend I've listened to writers whine online about promoting. Now, we all whine. It's a pain to do when you feel the lure of your story beckoning. It takes time to get out there. But the facts are simple, you have to do it. Even if you are a big name the publisher isn't going to do it all for you and most of us aren't big names.

Someone said that promo wasn't part of writing. Bullshit. Promotion is almost as important as the actual writing if you want people to read your books. And for those of us in epublishing, it's one step more difficult because of the frequency of other books that get released. Readers don't want to wait a year between books, they want a few months. That's a lot of pressure to perform, but that's the reality of this business.

I keep hearing people say they don't know if promo even makes a difference. I have to say I've seen that it does make a difference, especially to a new author like me. My sales have been really good, which is wonderful but the book didn't sell itself. I had to get out there to attach a person to Triad, give people a reason to choose it over another book with their limited book buying dollar.

And I like my readers. I really don't mind doing chats, they're fun and they are a great way to get out there and make contact with what people want to see and read in a fairly short period of time. I'm not that fab at creating banners and such (Megan Hart is amazing at this), but you know, I try and get my name out there where receptive audiences will see it.

I need to make promo items, both for when I send out prizes for contests and for RT (never to early to get started on that). I don't know if my bookmarks will make someone buy my book, but it's worth a try.

Essentially, I see promo as about 35% of my job and 70% once I finish the book until about three weeks after release and then it moves back to 40% or so.

(BTW, if you are reading this, I am not talking about you!)

Saturday, August 20, 2005


       To Writhe Or Not To Writhe

In one of my sex scenes, a big, tall man is over the heroine's body. He's teasing her with himself, drawing out her pleasure and she writhes beneath him in anticipation.

Only my editor insists that I can't use writhe because writhing indicates pain only. But it's not like I haven't seen it in sex scenes before. So she and I have been having a comments back and forth in the margins on track changes, LOL. She says something, I respond but don't change it. She's now asked the FLE what she thinks and suddenly, i'm seeing writhing women everywhere.

Most of the time when she suggests changes, I take her suggestions. I respect her editing, she's excellent at her job and she gets me, that's priceless. But sometimes, we get hung up like this and it's sort of funny, two strong people being nice but not giving any ground.

It could be worse. If I didn't like her or respect her, I'd view it as an attack. I'm lucky that way.

Friday, August 19, 2005


       Been A Bit Quiet

Sorry! I've been insanely busy since I found out that Touch of Fae was releasing on the 31st as well as dealing with other writerly type business.

Then last night as I'm planning to get back to work on Dark Justice I had a fairly severe allergic reaction to some new medication. It was oodles of fun (not)!

Anyway, I'm back to it tonight around my Friday date night with my husband (hopefully my children will be so exhausted from testing my patience all day they'll go to sleep!). I hope to get at least 10,000 words by Monday, we'll see how that goes.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005


       Release Date for TOF!

Hey Everyone!

I just got my release date for Touch of Fae - August 31! I'm shocked that it's coming so fast, I didn't expect that. But hey, this is a good thing and I'm very excited about it!

So, I want to tell you to mark your calendars for September 9 when I'm taking over the EC Readerboard for the day for "A Touch Of LM" For those of you who hung out with me for my LM day before Triad released, you'll know just how fun the day can be! I'll be giving away prizes and putting up great excerpts from Touch of Fae and other great EC authors' books!

Also, on release day, August 31, please join me at my yahoo loop for a release party. Again, some great excerpts and fun prizes!

My new web page is nearly ready to go, keep an eye out! It's going to be a busy September!

Monday, August 15, 2005


       DONE!

I finially finished the edits for Second Chances and sent them in to my editor. Of course, I realized some hours later that about 1/3 of them were missing and spent several more hours on Sunday looking through the MS to see what hadn't taken and re-editing it all. But it's gone and I'm relieved.

I open my email this morning and the last bit of stuff is there for TOF and then it's on the way to the FLE. Yeah! I am hoping to get a release date soon.

I'm off to finish the last bit of TOF to turn it around to my editor today and then I'll post an excerpt of something or other. It's been a while.

Oh and a reminder, Vixenwriter, my newsletter, is coming out on the 17th to subscribers. There are five chances to win some fun prizes and it's for subscribers only so if you haven't subscribed yet, the link is just to the right in the sidebar!

Thursday, August 11, 2005


       Surprises?

I was talking with another author friend of mine the other day about books that you resisted reading and ended up totally surprised by and loving by the end.

Two of those books were Diana Gabaldon's, Outlander and Susan Elizabeth Phillips', Ain't She Sweet.

When I first read the back cover blurb of Outlander I laughed. Honestly. Time travel? World War II to pre Culloden Scotland? She leaves her husband behind? What? Why on earth would I read this book?

Over the years people whose book sense that I liked and respected continued to praise the book and a friend sent the entire series to me. My TBR pile was empty and so I picked it up. I didn't stop reading until I'd read the entire series through and Outlander another time just for good measure.

It wasn't time travel that made the book stand out, it was the connection between Claire and Jamie. Claire is flawed. She does choose Jamie over her husband in the future. Even later when she comes back to the future, she stays with Frank despite still loving a man who was long dead (hundreds of years in the future). And yet, her connection, this great deep love she had with Jamie was just so bright and so clear that all of that stuff falls away.

Outlander is good because it's the very opposite from a cookie cutter story. It breaks every rule I can think of and yet, in my mind (and there are those who disagree most vehemently on this) it's one of the greatest romance novels ever written.

Along that line, Ain't She Sweet is another book that friends kept telling me to read. But why would I care about Sugar Beth? Ugh, this woman is the kind of girl I hated in high school! But Phillips takes this character and redeems her.

It isn't that she was misunderstood in high school, she was a bitch. But she's not now and she has to take a lot of shit to make up for what she was. But she does and she does it with class and in a way that does not diminish who the people are that she screwed over when she was young.

Again, Ain't She Sweet is a fabulous romance because it breaks the rules. It gives us a heroine who is totally unexpected and unworthy even. But she learns. She grows and she's courageous.

I love these unexpected surprises. I love being proven wrong about a book. And most importantly, I LOVE authors who break rules and who do it well.

What about you all? What are your "surprise" books?

Tuesday, August 09, 2005


       Second Chances Cover


The cover is up at Loose Id and I am now allowed to show you all Scott Carptenter's excellent work. As far as I know, it'll still be releasing in late September. I think Scott did a great job with both men in the background and Rori up front. He also made me a banner (how nice is that?).

Monday, August 08, 2005


       Monday Type Stuff

I've seen my cover for Second Chances and it's gorgeous. In fact, I can't wait to show it all to you but I can't until it goes up at the Loose Id site and then I will. Scott Carpenter did a fabulous job and I'm very pleased. I've been very fortunate with covers.

Speaking of SC, I'm editing. And editing. And editing. Ugh. I know, my husband constantly reminds me that I do not work in a coal mine, nor do I pluck chickens for a living so I should not complain about doing what I love and occasionally having to do the hard, tedious part. And he is right, as he usually is (which is why he's such a good husband because he listens to me complain anyway AND brings me chocolate).

I love my children but I will dance the dance of joy when school starts and I don't have to break up fights all day.

I still love my iPod and my laptop but will refrain from waxing all gooey over them (because I love you Stencil and I promised I would not start composing odes to my iPod).

I have several things I want to read and no time to read them, including (nanny nanny boo boo, Anya Bast's, Blood of the Damned which I will read soon so I can talk about how great it is until it comes out and you all see for yourselves.)

That's all for now. Keep an eye out for news and info, I've got some great stuff coming up!

Sunday, August 07, 2005


       TTQ's Statement

I can't figure out how to use a cut link here to not have an entry that is an entire screen long. So let me link to my Lauren Dane LJ where I have reposted (WITH PERMISSION) the statement. It's the entry from today (August 7)


       Some Good News!

Since I bitched about this, I feel it is only responsible of me to post the latest response from SOME of the RWA Board to the RITA debacle:

Permission to forward granted:

The following members of the RWA Board of Directors wish to apologize for the disappointing direction of the Awards Ceremony during the 2005 conference. What should have been a celebration, not only of our finalists and award winners, but also of the growth and success of RWA, was not. Members of the board were repeatedly assured by the Awards Ceremony Board Liaison that the planning of the program was progressing appropriately. It was not until it was too late that we discovered that the focus of the ceremony had strayed from the theme we'd been given.

We thank those members who stepped in at the last moment to try to fix the script. We also apologize sincerely to our award winners, our finalists, and our members that the program was not appropriate to celebrate RWA's success, as well as theirs. We apologize especially to Nora Roberts, who was not only put in an untenable position, but whose statement as to her reasons for not appearing was not read.

We pledge to move forward from this and to make the Awards Ceremony in Atlanta exactly what it should always be--a night on which we embrace the joys of romance writing and recognize the finalists and winners of our most cherished awards.

Gayle Wilson President-Elect
Kathy Carmichael Secretary
Connie Newman Treasurer
Nicole Burnham Region 1 Director
Lisa Kamps Region 1 Director
Dorien Kelly Region 2 Director
Peggy Emard Region 2 Director
Linda Howard Region 3 Director
Linda Winstead Jones Region 3 Director
Karen Fox Region 4 Director
Sherry Lewis Region 4 Director
Geralyn Dawson Region 5 Director
Jill Limber Region 6 Director
Jennifer Crump PRO Liaison
Teresa Carpenter Chapter Liaison


There are four members not on this list, Tara Taylor Quinn - the outgoing president and the Award's ceremony board liason, Patricia Potter, Diane Pershing and Lynn Kerstan. I do not know why they were not there. However, TTQ issued a statement that I will also put up in part later.

Thursday, August 04, 2005


       Public Persona (warning, graphic words for the no no place ahead)

So, I think the hardest thing for me in this whole journey into writing professionally is the management of my public persona.

You see, I'm a mouthy, opinionated broad. I know! Shocking! I know it doesn't seem that way at all! That's me, meek, sweet and mild. HA!

But the thing is, this me is still only at about 7 out of 10 me. I'm constantly having to check what I say. I want to pop off with how I feel about the whole RWA debacle and I have, but I have to stay concise and leave out all of the hot button words that I just say on IM with my friends. Friends who know the 10 out of 10 Lauren and love me anyway, well to my face, I know they roll their eyes at me because I'm just that way.

I see something unjust and I want to say so. I've had people tell me, "you can't say that!" and I know they have my best interests at heart, but damnit, I can't see stupid bullshit happen and not comment, I'm just not wired that way. Although, I suppose I might avoid saying stuff like "stupid bullshit."

See, I think like a lawyer. It's impossible not to, law school breaks you down and rebuilds you into a certain kind of thinker, which is useful but hard when you'd rather not think about stuff or just accept backpedaling at face value despite the volumes of information that points to the contrary. (I know, my sins are racking up, erotic romance writer, mouthy, opinionated AND a lawyer, I can't help it, I'm just born to be bad)

What I'm saying is this (well, actually there are several things I'm gonna say): This RWA leadership (not all of the BOD but certainly the president and several of her supporters) has been hostile to the subgenre of writing that I inhabit. The things that have flowed out from her desk have been blunt and quite direct in communicating just what she thinks of erotic romance. Now, there are a lot of members of the RWA who feel this way apparently and goody for them, they are most assuredly welcome to believe that erotic romance is a plague upon romance and all of the terrible pornographers with keyboards are bringing the genre down (cause romance is held in such high esteem as a genre dontcha know).

But if you are going to make us use a separate entrance and make us sit in the back of the bus, stop fucking taking our dues. You hear me? You're only too eager to collect the dues of the authors of erotic romance, to use our sales stats in your own. But you want to treat us like we're dirt, as if we are lesser writers and human beings than you are because I say pussy and you wouldn't even think of that "no no place" much less write about it AND take our money! That's outrageous. I'm gonna say it again, that's outrageous!

I won't take pains to remind you of the hundreds of thousands of sales in the sub genre and that by attacking us, you're attacking our readers - cause that's obvious, even to a girl who says cock instead of throbbing member.

I'm honestly trying to stay at 7 out of 10 here but this infurates me and I can feel myself slip up to 8 1/2 - The latest RWA debacle with the RITAs is just yet another example of how estranged the president is with the membership.

Seriously, WHO thinks of putting together images of death and destruction with a kicky soundtrack and an ostentatious display? Further, what the heck does that have to do with romance novels? The RITAs are not awards for documentary film making or historical texts. It's not like there's a death of creativity in the RWA, either. There are 9200 members, creative people abound. To have such a clueless set of themes isn't just dumb, it's offensive because it lacks creativity, it's lazy.

I've read the books of many of the women who are on the BOD - some of them are my favorite authors so I know they have the brainpower to have made the RITA ceremony into something entertaining, fun AND on topic. At this point, I'm just confused really, as to the point of the entire thing and to the hubris of an administration that would offend one of the brightest lights in our genre, Nora Roberts. Nora Roberts, you remember her? Makes 80 million dollars a year, has brought readers from outside romance in, making us all appeal to a wider audience - that Nora Roberts. And it's not like she has a reputation for complaining about every little thing either so it seems to me when she gets worked up enough to write the statement that she did, things are going to hell in a handbasket with the RWA leadership.

I know I know, I've said too much. I've been political and opinionated but I can't help it. Why on earth should I stand by when I'm called names and what I do, along with my readers, gets trashed? Like a woman who thinks it's cute to have Don't Worry Be Happy should be played over video of Tiananmen Square is one to judge.

And I'm not one to judge but I will anyway. I'm human, I make mistakes, I'm mouthy and opinionated (as we established above) and I'm sick of this. If the RWA is going to be relevant to its members, ALL of its members need to be included at the table. An awards ceremony with any political perspective is not inclusive, nor is it relevant to romance writing. Sadly, the RITA Ceremony is just the icing on a really crappy cake and our entire genre gets painted with a broad brush over stuff like this and that's really just sad.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005


       A Thank You Note

I should be editing but I'm taking a break for diet coke with lime, some sweetpea snaps and a note to say that I've read Nora Roberts' and Jennifer Crusie's statements about the ridiculous script for the RWA's RITA ceremonies on Saturday and they both are articulate and brave for standing up and saying what many have been thinking. So I want to thank them both for making me proud to call myself a romance writer.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005


       Gabbing

Okay, so I was a good little writer last night and edited my ass off. Tightened things up, got rid of superflous stuff, narrowed focus, that sort of thing.

Second Chances has a BDSM storyline. But that sentence is limiting. It's more than that. I think that most books with BDSM sex in them have a tendency to totally miss out on the depth of emotion. It's more than just the flogger hitting the ass or putting wrist restraints on someone. The sub is giving something to the Dom, something more than her body. It's difficult to convey the depth of that, but I'm trying nonetheless. It just takes a bit more time and energy to do a sex scene justice. (ah, such a burden, writing sex, but I will perservere, heh).

I'm anxious to finish up so I can get back to Dark Justice - it calls to me!

If you like vampires, Anya Bast has written a great blog entry about them on our Maverick Authors blog. Take a look, it's good stuff.

If you haven't subscribed to my newsletter yet, get on over to do so, it'll have some great content and a chance for some freebies. Half BDSM, half paranormal - to celebrate the upcoming release of Second Chances and Touch of Fae. Clicky and in a few keystrokes, you're good to go.

Monday, August 01, 2005


       Monday, Monday, Monday

So my muse tricked me and I ended up with something new in Dark Justice. It complicates things but at the same time, it deepens the story and opens the door up for some world building for the vamp series I want to do. I'm very happy with the book so far.

Still editing Second Chances.

Started and finished, Dead as a Doornail and I really liked it. I loved that Lili Bard from the Shakespeare, Arkansas books was in it, even if just for a brief period. No sex though. Hello! All of these hot men who wanted to fuck Sookie and there was no action at all. I was quite disappointed in that but really that was the only thing. Harris continues to be clever and funny and true to her characters.

Dark Justice
Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
17,000 / 65,000
(18.0%)