29 June 2009

Countdown to Branded By Fire by Nalini Singh

The lovely Nalini has saved me having to think up a blog post this week. Instead I'm passing on an invitation...

There's only 8 days to go until Branded by Fire by Nalini Singh is released so she's throwing a cyber party - and why wouldn't you?
Head on over to her blog and check out the giveaways and other assorted fun.

Branded by Fire is number 6 in the Psi/Changling series, but don't let that scare you, all the books can easily be read as stand-alones. If you're thinking you've heard me mention these books on my blog before then you'd be right. This is one of my all time favourite paranormal romance series and I totally recommend giving it a go. Want to know more about her books, visit her website. If Psi powers and shape-shifters aren't your thing but you'd love to give angels a go, try her new series which is shaping up to be every bit as good.

Music: Gossip
Currently reading: 'Magic Burns' by Ilona Andrews

22 June 2009

Top 10 things a romance hero needs

It's something oft discussed - what makes a good hero? I was wandering around the web - as one does - when I came across this list and thought I'd throw it out here...

  1. 1. Good Looks - if gazing at him doesn’t get your motor running and your engine purring, he’s not the hero of your dreams.
    • Synonyms: Casanova, Adonis
  2. 2. Skills in the Bedroom - or in the shower, on top of the kitchen table, on the living room floor, against a wall, on the stairs, in the car, ahem… you know where this is going.
    • Synonyms: it frequently goes by the term Heroic Wang of Mighty Loving.
  3. 3. Brawn and Brains - nothing kills a hero’s heroism faster than stupidity. Intelligence is as sexy as muscles!
    • Synonyms: Nerd, Geek
  4. 4. Charm - if he can’t charm his way into your knickers with a smile, something’s wrong.
    • Synonyms: Magnetism, Thrall, Charisma, Magic
  5. 5. Domestic Skills - if he cooks, cleans, and gives orgasms in sets of three or more, he’s never allowed out of the house. His name is slave and he answers to Master.
    • Synonyms: Maid, Chef, Sex God
  6. 6. Brooding - all heroes brood, it’s built into their genetic makeup. We females simply can’t resist a good brood, it’s our kryptonite.
    • Synonyms: Sulking, Moping, Pouting
  7. 7. Possessiveness - they have it, how often they express it is another matter to be taken up by the subgenre or author.
    • Synonyms: Beast, Alpha Male, Green Eyed Monster, Jealousy
  8. 8. Wealth - not just money, the hero must also be wealthy in knowledge, social connections, life skills, common sense… hold on the last one until later in the novel, because otherwise there might not be a story.
    • Synonyms: Resources
  9. 9. Stubbornness - you didn’t read that wrong. They’re male, it’s one of the few flaws we allow them, but only when it serves our purposes.
    • Synonyms: Persistence, Perseverance; Inflexibility, Pigheadedness
  10. 10. Heroine - what’s the point of #1-9 if he doesn’t have #10?
    • Synonyms: She came, she conquered, and he’s forever enslaved to the Magic Hoo-Hoo.
I was going to comment and discuss, but damn it all if after I read the whole list that didn't sum things up pretty well. I thought humour - but then number 4 kind of covers that. The only other things I could think of adding were honour and a good heart, but they could easily fall under #8.

If you're looking for a more detailed list why don't you have a gander at the list composed by Mills & Boon and see how it compares. Their list relates specifically to their different lines and it's interesting to compare the heroes in each line. Although their list mentions particular traits the list above doesn't include by name, all the traits could probably be wedged into the 10 above.

I'll leave you to add your thoughts/criteria...

PS: You know something else when I compared my hubby to the list I decided I was a pretty lucky woman :)

Music: Thelonious Monk Quartet
Currently reading: 'The star Prince' by Susan Grant

17 June 2009

Mary Poppins versus Cthulhu

I thought I would share a fun little game with you all, it's called Mary Poppins vs. Cthulhu. It's a hero vs. villain / good vs. evil type game.

The basic premise: you need two players (along with any number of judges and hecklers to decide the fate of the battle for those cases where the contestants can’t agree). Each player thinks up a hero or villain from the pages of history or literature, then on the count of three, says the name. It is then decided which of them would win in a battle to the death, with all their powers and resources brought to bear on the problem.

A couple of examples, all of which could be argued differently depending on the players...

Example 1: Mary Poppins vs. Cthulhu,while on the face of it, Cthulhu is an ancient evil elder god who will rise from the waves when the stars are right, if you go with the book version, there’s no contest–Mary Poppins rearranges the stars in the course of babysitting and can also summon Greco-Roman gods as a way to amuse kids on a shopping trip. She’d banish Cthulhu without even breaking a sweat and do it in time for tea. And even if she were limited to the powers of the Disney musical version, Cthulhu would find himself in a magical chalk painting with nothing to eat but pearly kings and penguins, and by the time he’d finished that, Mary Poppins, having the power of Julie Andrew’s perfect diction, would be able to banish him by speaking the appropriate eldritch words from the Necronomicon. For example, “Supercalifragelisticexpialidocious,” which is of course “something quite atrocious” which fits Cthulhu to a T.

Example 2: Willy Wonka vs. Alien (from the movie of the same name), since Willy has previously faced snozwangers, hornswogglers, and those horrible wicked wangdoodles, not to mention vermicious knids, he stands a good chance against Alien.

Enjoy... and feel free to post suggestions & your arguments :)

Music: Primal Scream
Currently reading: 'Even Demons get the Blues' by Maree Anderson
I thoroughly enjoyed this novella from Red Sage Publishing by a debut New Zealand writer.
The demon Rezon is obsessed with Leisa, a tormented human woman. When Leisa picks up one loser too many, Rezon’s provoked into whisking her off to his lair to show her what a real man—uh, make that Demon!—can do for her. Then the trouble really starts... Lesia's soul's in jeopardy.
Maree's writing is smooth and her dialogue believable, I often found myself with a smile on my face. The characters are convincing and sympathetic. You can understand what drives Leisa to behave the way she does; and Rezon is clearly an evil demon Lord while at the same time having a chink in his armour that lets in love.
NB: genre - erotic romance. To be honest erotic romances are not my usual fare but Maree never loses sight of the story - I really wanted to know how it ended and how the characters resolved their problems.

11 June 2009

Health Warning

This morning I had a meeting in town, not knowing what the traffic was going to be like I left early. Naturally, since I allowed time for the traffic to be bad - it was good. Got into town early and decided to grab a coffee since I had half an hour to kill.
I was sitting there wishing I had my laptop so I could get some work done when inspiration struck. Grabbing a piece of paper I started scribbling madly. I spent 20 minutes writing the next scene in my current WIP. Yipee :) That much closer to today's word count.
I don't know why I didn't think of it earlier, except to say I am clearly so in bed with technology that for a moment I forgot about writing the old fashioned way :)

A close friend sent me this and in the interests of public health and safety I thought I should pass it on...
I went to a dinner party last night, where I, and other guests, enjoyed copious amounts of alcohol. I awoke this morning not feeling well, with what could be described as flu-like symptoms; headache, nausea, chills, sore eyes, etc.

From the results of some initial testing, I have unfortunately tested positive for what experts are now calling Wine Flu. This debilitating condition is very serious- and it appears this is not an isolated case. Reports are flooding in from all around the neighbourhood of others diagnosed with Wine Flu.

To anyone that starts to exhibit the aforementioned tell-tale signs, experts are recommending a cup of tea and a bit of a lie down. However, should your condition worsen, you should immediately hire a DVD and take some Nurofen [Nurofen seems to be the only drug available that has been proven to help combat this unusual type of flu].

Others are reporting a McDonald's Happy Meal can also help in some cases.

Wine Flu does not need to be life threatening and, if treated early, can be eradicated within a 24-48 hour period. If not, then further application of the original liquid in similar quantities to the original dose has been shown to do the trick.

Good luck.

03 June 2009


Just had a long weekend here in NZ - woo hoo.

Went and saw Sneaky Sound System on Saturday night - very good. They came on a little late and the DJ opening for them was, well, not to put too fine a point on it, boring. But after the yawn fest Sneaky rocked. You can check them out on their myspace page (and have a little listen). 'I love it' is one of their big hits, although personally my favourite is 'UFO' - what am I saying? It's all good :)

Book gets closer to completion by the day - I'm eyeball deep in what must be close the final bout of edits. So, hang onto you shirts and shoes people, we're getting there :)

Music: !!!
Don't ask me I don't understand it either :) (say - check, check, check - apparently).
But I'm mixing it up - just had Van Halen blasting in the car. I'm thinking Fat Freddy's Drop for the ride home.
Currently reading: 'Lover Avenged' JR Ward's latest offering
Great so far - Rehvenge is a complex conflicted character (although I admit I can't wait for the next one which looks like it's going to be about John Matthew)