Friday, March 30, 2007

My Mother, My Daughter and Me

If you stand us up side by side, you can maybe see a few features here and there that are the same. Ok, we have the same wide spaced, eyes that can go from dark chocolate brown to the pits of hell black magic evil at the drop of a hat. I also know that we've got the same smile that hides three of the sharpest tongues in the South. Otherwise, we're very different women. Mother older and yes, much much wiser than us. (pfth) I am the middle and more temperate one (flutters lashes) and my daughter, well, let's just say she's still getting her sealegs in this thing I like to call reality.

For the sake of your sanity, the we'll use code names. I say yours, as mine was lost yesterday, and the other two never had theirs to begin with. Gah! Nana, Mozilla and Jenn. We planned to drive to meet Nana after work to get my teenaged daughter a prom dress. Now, my husband had been hemming and hawing about this very outing for over a month because of two things.

1. He hates to have anyone go to town w/out him for fear he'll miss somethin.
2. He knew good and well we weren't gettin' him his comic books.

So, he whined but we went anyway. I think I may have left fingerprints on that child's dash, because I foolishly thought she drove like she had a lick of sense. Man, was I wrong! If I told her once, I told her a hundred times to slow down. "But why?" is not the response you give me. My answer will always be. "Because, if you don't, I'm gonna kill you graveyard dead."

However, we made it to my mother's work on the outskirts of what I call Funroe. It ain't, let me say that up front, this is something I like to call sarcasm. Anyway, my mama is standing beside her truck with her hands on her hips tapping her foot, pointing at the parking space she wants my child to park in. Of course, Mozilla makes a beeline for it. That is, if bees went 70 miles an hour!

"Slow down Mozilla!" She looks shocked. I just snicker and resist the urge to kiss the ground when I get out, as I don't know how many squirrels have used it for a toilet.

Mozilla fusses about getting in the back of the big pickup truck I know my mother has bought to make up for the fact that she's barely over five feet tall. But I have senority, so I get shotgun, whoohoo! Nana begins to yack and yack and yack about what she wants Mozilla to get. However, Mo is adamant that she will have this thing called a 'froofy' skirt. I don't know what that is, but hopefully, despite the way my mother is talking, driving and cussing people in front of her all at the same time, we will make it to the store and find out. Now I see where my daughter got her mad skills behind the wheel.

Finally, we arrive and we look and look and look and look and if we don't stop looking and start picking, I'm going to scream. Mozilla is very certain about what she wants, she turns to tell Nana but we can't see her over racks. Oh, but we can HEAR her. "Ooh, and these and ooh these. And I must have THESE!"

Mozilla: "Mother go and get Nana out of the shoes."
Me: "How do you know it's shoes?"
Mo: *raising a brow* "Oh please, it's Nana!"
Me: "Mama!! Out of the shoes now!"
Nana: "Aww." After a long pause, she still hasn't appeared, so I go fetch *read drag* her away from the blingy flipflops. "But they're 5.99. I could have a pair in every color." When this doesn't work, she tries bribery, "I'll buy you some too, dear. Not that grandchild, she's evil."

Then.. I become invisible as she spies the frou frou dresses. She knows that you can't pay me to wear a dress, especially not this kind. However, Mozilla is a clothes horse of a different color. "Oh yeah, baby." My mother practically threw me to the floor as she ran to those dresses. "So, red, right?"

"No red."

"Yes, red, I like red, and this shiny red is the best." So said my mother the magpie. "And this one has feathers!"

"No red, Nana."

"So, this dark red, is even better and shinier." Have I ever mentioned the fact that I get at least one red article of clothing from my mother for Christmas every single year? Well, I do. She will deny it, but it's true.

"No red, Nana, I want pink." Mozilla pulls all the pink dresses she likes off the racks and grabs me by the collar on her way to the dressing room.

Me: "Ew pink? I shall hurl. Urk!"

"Pink is a good color, Mama, now get in this room with me." She shoves me in front of the curtain that is all that separates her from the rest of the store and starts to strip.

At first I don't know why she's got me stationed there, until I hear the clip clop of Nana's little cloven high heels and then.. *swish* My mother snatches the curtain back. "Aren't you dressed yet?"

My child exhibites a heretofore unknown ability to scream at a level only dogs and small children and unfortunately her mother can hear about being naked. Perhaps she is a mutant X-Brat known as Banshee and I am an X-Bitch known as Bitchshe? Heeeheee!! *ahem* Back to the shopping. Oh yall hush, yall can see from this here, why I'm insane!

Suffice to say, we got the first dress she tried on, unfortunately, we tried on more than one dress before we decided on that first one. All of them were pink, all of them were beautiful. However, the one we got is the one she wanted. Mozilla's happy and Nana's happy(pink is pale red after all, right?). Jenn's just damn happy it's over. I never want to go shopping with them again.

Some evil friend of mine (Kat, whose gonna get hers, mark my words) pointed out to me that one day I'll be helping her to pick out a wedding dress. I don't find that funny at all. I only have one word to say to my daughter on this subject. If you love me ..


Jenna Leigh

PS: Can't share it yet, but I got my cover for The Wolf's Heart and all I can say is.. woof woof baby!! It's beautiful. Believe me, the first chance I get, I'll have it up here, and everywhere. For right now, it's on my desktop. Marcus never looked so good. Oh, but I can share this!
That's right, I'm on the coming soon page! This just sort of makes it real. I know Samhain already said yes, but a little part of me still thinks they'll go 'psych! take backsies!' and you know, then I'd cry.

Friday, March 23, 2007

I admit, I got a thinkin' problem.

And a procrastinatin one too. When I put off writing, I surf.. a lot actually, so when I came upon Romancing the Blog where a writer was talking about the RITA's, I read it, hoping to glean some knowledge about the contest itself. I'll admit up front that I don't really know much about them other than than there's no chance in hell I'll be getting one because I don't belong to any of the romance clubs nor do I enter contests cause A)I'm po and B)I really don't get down with havin' to pay to play. (hmm) But that's horse of a different color that could be beaten to death, fried and force fed to me. It'll probably be much more palatable than the crow which I'm sure I'll eat one day, when I plop my money down and enter with the rest of the starry-eyed hopefuls.

However, that's not what I've been thinking about since I read that blog. No, really what I'm wondering is this; do readers think that authors stop reading once they get published? I sort of inferred it from some of the comments I saw there. I also almost passed out when I saw Nora Robert's name in the comments, so that should give you your first clue that I at least, am still very much a reader, and a big fan of other authors. As an aside, another of my favorite authors, Mary Stella commented, which made me smile, for very different reasons. I know her, as in I've met her, personally. I'm also a fan of hers, not in the OMG IT'S MARY STELLA! I'M GONNA BLOW CHUNKS BEHIND THIS CONVENIENT POTTED PALM! freakout, but a less insane, more personal, but still very much fan type thing, and a friend as well. (sorry, to Nora for any future freakout hurling I may do *ahem*) I admit that I don't have as much time to read anymore, so what I do purchase is what I know I will soon.

I know readers look at authors as a different species. Heck, I do it myself, see the above flip out about Nora Roberts. She is a goddess of the literary field to me, so therefore how can she take time out of her busy schedule to comment on a blog? Ohmegawd, you know? I lose IQ points, that believe you me, I don't have to spare when I think of being in the same cyberspace she may or may not been in at some time or other, so I understand. Now, I know good and well that I in no way shape or form am in the leagues with this woman, so please, save your comments about how lowly I am in comparison to her loftiness. But, I'm pretty sure she reads books too, or has a well oiled male slave to read them to her while having her feet rubbed. Or, this is what I'd do in her place.

Here's how I look at it the reader/author thing.

Do doctors stop needing medical care when they receive their diplomas?
Do pilots stop needing to be flown anywhere ever, ever again?
Do chaffeurs ever let someone else drive?
Do singers ever listen to someone else sing?

I love to read, and that will never change. I look at it like a vacation from what I do every day, where I create the world and direct the players to suit my needs. Another author's book is like a freebie where I don't have to do a thing but sit back and enjoy the fruits of their labor. While I admit I see the backstage process a little more clearly than I did before, I can still lose myself in the characters, the story, and yes, hope like hell that they get their happy ever after by the time I get to the end.

Maybe a more apt analogy is the mother who cooks supper every single night for her family. One night she's taken out on the town by her wonderful husband for a romantic dinner just for two. There's candlelight, roses, and soft music and wonderful conversation. She doesn't have to do a thing but sit back and enjoy the meal. She can taste the seasonings in the dish, feel the smoothness of the sauce on her tongue. She knows how that wonderful meal was prepared, because, heck, she can cook it herself, but by golly, she didn't have to lift a finger to do it tonight. And even better.. she doesn't to clean up, and if she's lucky, she doesn't have to pick up the check either. (Hooray to hubby for buying Kim Harrison's book so I didn't have to whoohoo!!!)

Most of us were readers long before we were authors, I know I was, I've read since the age of four, when I did good to write my name. If anything we're creatures of habit, we hoard books like fiends, saving them for the literary rainy days better known as the horrible writer's block. Screw movies, nothing beats curling up with a good book when you've got the blues. Reading's an escape from a reality that so often bites the big one, and nobody, I mean nobody knows that better than a reader. But on the flipside writing's also an escape. Why do you think readers make such prolific authors?

Old Readers Never Die,
They Just Get Published
To Support Their Addiction

Book Ho

Monday, March 19, 2007

Join us at Coffee Time Romance on Tuesday

Jenna Leigh, Mila Ramos, and J Morgan are all going to be in one chatroom together, so watch out! Join them as they talk about their current releases, upcoming books, and even better, give away some great prizes!!

So, join us, Tuesday, March 20th at 8pm Central / 9pm Eastern

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Do you hear what I hear?

No, I'm not singing carols early. A few minutes ago, my hubby does the unthinkable and turns off the tv and asks me that very question. I said, what, is it them the voices talkin in your head again? *hee hee* Well, I thought it was really funny, if you must know. However, he did not, and soon I too heard the eerie sounds coming from right outside our chamber door. It weren't a raven that's for sure.

These sounds were low and angry, filled with rage and hate and angst, nothing that you'd think an animal could make. Let me explain that we live in a rural area where we do get visits from various forms of wildlife. Anything and everything has come into our yard, deer, coyote, panthers, possum, armadello, rabbits, squirrels and most recently to my husband's absolute panic, a skunk. But tonight it was something else, according to him. Something evil, heinous and bent on revenge against us for some unknown slight. Perhaps it was even a ghost!
I will admit it sounded horrible, it howled like something that might be undead.

But, if it was a ghost, why did he pick up the bb gun that he'd and my daughter had been playing with earlier? I asked him this and was informed it made him feel better. I myself had picked a vastly superior weapon.. a long handled wooden spoon. Everyone knows this is what you use for ghost busting. *snorts* Thus armed, we crept out onto the porch, amid the growls and howls of the horrid beasties as I could tell it was more than one. Once there, I started bravely down the steps. As I put my foot on the first stair, he decides that whatever it is, is under the porch and stomps his big redneck foot, loudly. I almost fell off the porch! I wish it known that I did not hit my husband with the spoon, however, it was a very near thing. Well, at least not until we got safely back inside.

Oh, what was the animal that made so much noise? It wasn't a ghost, or even a panther or a coyote. It was two cats, only they make angry hissy noises, besides humans that is. They'd decided that the area beneath our porch was hotly contested territory worthy of a test of if not wills, then at least a hissy fit or three. My own cat, who is strictly a house feline, is angry about this fact. Right now he's staring hard out of the screen door adding his own low, angry hisses to the chorus of howls and growls. Every once in a while I hear a meow. Now they meow, if they'd done that before, it could have saved me a trip outdoors in the middle of the night amongst all them skeeters, not to mention scaring a few years off my life. The next time that man hears something he can go outside by himself. Maybe next time, I'll stomp on the porch and make him jump ten feet in the air. I'll still have my spoon, though, don't yall worry.

Stirring Up Trouble On a Saturday Night

Jenna Leigh

Thursday, March 15, 2007

When your hubby always..

Thinks that the weird chicks on tv, movies, etc.. are hot? I mean always. Not kidding. Here's the skinny, blonde, chick with the ginormous hooters, in other words the All-American version of hotness. Then you have the slightly quirky looking girl with crazy eyes flashing behind a pair of cateye glasses who has either brunette or red hair or heck give her streaks of both through her corkscrew curls, why not? Put them side by side and he'll pick that freaky chick every single TIME! He was just yelling that some strange brunette is HOT and to dump the boney blonde chick. Is this a tiny, little, itty bitty clue that maybe, just, oh maybe I'm weird? Nah.

But what makes men attracted to certain types of women? What makes say, men like my hubby go ape for the darkhorse of a woman who is crazy, quirky, yet strangely attractive and compelling despite her insanity? Besides her fabu good looks and all that is *cough cough* Now that he's been drawn into my web, he of course knows I'm a wonderful cook (when I feel like it), have a great sense of humor, am pretty good in the sack (I'm not saying how long or erm little time he waited to find this out, so shush) and many other things I can't share because then I'd have to kill yall. But I make him happy, so he says. He is sorta crazy too, you know.

But on the flip side, what makes others go towards the light.. You know, the perfectly toned extra slim blonde bombshell who never has a hair out of place. Who wouldn't know her way around a skillet or a punchline if it hit her in her oh so perfect face? These men usually are not perfect themselves so it isn't a case of like to like. I've heard of opposites attracting but come on, that means both parties are attracted to each other.

I myself think Hugh Jackman's hotter than Popeye's spicey fried chicken with a side of buscuits covered in gravy.. wait make that Hugh covered in gravy. *pauses* Anyway, where was I? Oh opposites. He is from down under I'm from the south of nowhere. He's rich and famous, I'm so not and yet, we're not an item... well, not yet. Ooh but we're both married, hmm. Ok, fine, I'm married to the wonderful man who thinks I'm cute, but he was just lusting after some trashy brunette on tv, so I can lust too, right? Riiight.

But my point still stands, we all have our types. Thank goodness my type is sitting in his easy chair quietly watching Casino Royale now.

Ooh, damn, speaking of type. Bond is pretty hot too. Color me shaken and stirred. Meowrrr.

Married Not Dead
Shallow Gal Jenn

Friday, March 09, 2007

Coming Soon Means Freak Out Time

When? Where? What? I sound like Vinnie Barbarino from Welcome Back Kotter now, don't I? But, when I get word that one of my books is coming out, I get a little crazy. Um.. ok, for those of you out there in cyber land who just fell off your chairs, I hope you get a ginormous bruise the shape of Louisiana on your butts. Fine, crazier, are you happy? Good, now get up off the floor.

My novella, Tigre Moon, is coming out in the Alien Seduction Digest with Midnight Showcase .. um.. soon. Yes, I'm wiggling around on my chair like a 1st grader after way too many trips to the water fountain! For one thing, this is a couple of firsts for me.
First scifi, (ish) first nonfunny, and first real erotic piece of work I've ever submitted for publication, so I'm nervous. On one hand, I don't want it to come out, but on the other, I'm ready for people to say yeah, we like it or no we don't so I can get that part over with and move on. Or more likely consume vast amounts of chocolate and hide under my bed for months on end, but that's another blog for another day when I actually have that substance in my house. If I talk about it now, my hubby may be injured as I'm sure he ate the last piece. *grr*

My point is, is there ever a time when an author is comfortable enough about their work where they don't experience what amounts to stage fright? Will I ever feel like everybody won't think it's horse dung? Will I ever think they won't open their mouths and scream like Donald Sutherland in Invasion of the Body Snatchers and let everyone know I'm a poser proser just pretending to be a real author? If so, then when, after the third, fourth or fifth or even the tenth book?

It's not the difference between ebooks and prints for me either, I've held my books in my hands, so that ain't it, girls and boys. And I know that if I got the 'call' today from one of those giant publishing companies and had the golden contract handed to me on a silver platter, I'd still feel in my lil redneck heart I'd still be waiting for the other shoe to drop (not that I wear them if I can get out of it mind you) and for someone to say. "She ain't a real author, now is she?"

Wait, that sounds suspiciously like one of my kinfolk, or else, like Me. Hmm. Now we're getting somewhere. Who knew blogging could be therapeutic? Or else, my assorted personalities are so busy reading what I'm typing they forgot to block it out. Well, ha to them! I won this round! Have a great weekend everybody!

Coming someday soon to a blog near you,

Jennochio.. a real live author *winks*

Friday, March 02, 2007

Compromising My Principles

Ok, not as a writer. I really haven't got all that many yet, actually. I just tell my stories to the best of my ability and hope people like it, or at least doesn't hate it enough to yell at me about it.

No, I mean about what I will and will not sit (in a highly uncomfy chair mind you), in a dark smelly cold theater for over two hours to see. I'm talking about 300 starring the admittedly hunkified GB. (Bows to NeeGnome's taste in hunks) I know he's hot, I know he's half nekkid in most of the film, but from what I see it's all fighting and frankly, um.. ew. I don't do battles.

Even in the historical romances of my favorite authors.... *pauses* Please forgive me for what I'm about to write oh wonderfully wicked writers of the ripped bodices. I will flip through the scenes. *flip flip flip* He thrust his sword. Gah, how long is this bloody battle? *flip flip flip* He parries. Grrrr! *flip flip flip* He thrust.. OMG, if he thrusts or parries one more freakin time.. oh *blinks* Well now, that's a sword of a different color. *grins and flips back* Give it to her Gavin! Because, as we all know all good heroes are named Gavin, Tristen, or Roark or um even Jake or Mattias or something. *coughs* It's scientific fact.

Anyway, my point is this, in a book, I can flip through the battles because, unlike my hubby, and all the rest of the people who LIKE battles I personally do not. I skipped half of the Lord of the Rings books because it was all battles. People talk about romance novels being repetitive. "How can you make the sex scenes different? It's all in and out!" Well, how the crap do you make scenes where all you're doing is lopping off arms, legs and heads any less so? After a while it all starts looking like one of those Jackson Pollock paintings done in one color. Red!

So, do I compromise and go to the 300 just because I'll get to see GB in what amounts to an ancient leather and um *drools* very brief freakin speedo with a shield, sword and cape for accessories, or do I take my hormonal stand now? One small step for women equals one giant step for womenkind! I don't like battleflicks and I ain't gonna take it no more! I'm staying home to watch urm, Shaolin Soccer or Kung Fu Hustle or something that shows me half nekkid man chests. Ok, yes, they have fight scenes but for some reason, I like those. Don't ask me why, I blame Bruce Lee and Kung Fu Theater late night Saturday nights.

Hey hey, you people just all hush. I grew up in a different world with three channels and no internet. Well, four if you count public broadcasting, which I most definately do. Without that, I'd have never had the most important of my TV addiction, Dr. Who, Black Adder and Red Dwarf. More on those later. It also gave me Reading Rainbow.. which leads me to Lavar Burton who later starred on what hit television show? Star Trek:The Next Generation. Life revolves around the Trek, I knew it.

Jenn/Spock's Gurl 4Ever.

Hubby can see 300 with the wookie for all I care.

PS: Shut up Glamazon, Star Trek is so too the bestest!