Saturday, August 27, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday & Eye Candy

Photo taken by Denny S. Bryce - Santa Monica Beach 2006

Yep, it's the night for posting Six Sentence Sunday - a few hours early. I wanted to make certain I beat IRENE to the punch - in case that punch takes out electricity here on Capitol Hill. 

Yep, I live in the heart of DC, so we will see what the storm brings. For some reason, the news is sketchy as to what we should expect. One thing though - it's been raining steady and hard since ten o'clock this morning...


Anyway, this is from my WIP about a vampire FBI agent, witches coven, and a tough-promise-to-keep urban fantasy with the working title - Gideon - it's the one I'm using for Six Sentence Sunday these days. Hope you enjoy. Also, this character is not the heroine, but she is pivotal to the major subplot.


Sara rubbed her sore jaw.

This was what she got for hanging out all night at Tryst, bullshitting with her boss and the rest of the gang.
“Fuck,” she said, and rolled carefully onto her side. Her lower back and legs ached from where the little man had knocked her to the ground. She never imagined he was dangerous or strong enough to hurt her when she first saw him in the middle of the street. That much power didn't usually come short in stature and poorly dressed.


Well, still waiting for the storm and it's almost 8:45 p.m. It's definitely moving slow, but at least I've posted my SSS for this week!  And oh yes, thank you to all of those who dropped by to comment last week. Much appreciated!


Thursday, August 25, 2011

Today's Thursday Treat: Rita-Award Winning Author Alicia Rasley


Photo of James Marsters as Spike from Buffy the Vampire Slayer snagged by Denny S. Bryce

I am totally thrilled to have this mega-author, writing instructor, mentor and all around fantastic woman as today's Thursday Treat!!! 

Ms. Alicia Rasley and I met years ago at an event called Writercon, which was a conference created by the online fan-fiction community for Joss Whedon's Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Since those good ole days we've become buddies and her classes on writing a synopsis is one of the best out there. So here goes...

Q:  Let's get to the facts right up front. What's your full author name, website, your latest new release, the WIP that is keeping you up at night, your agent, your publisher, how long have you been writing…your successes? Yes, I want the mini bio right here, right now!

Alicia Rasley is the author of The Power of Point of View and The Story Within Plotbook.
- RITA-award-winning author.
- Writing instructor, Ivy Tech State College, University of Maryland.
- Nationally known writing workshop leader.
- Former small press editor.
- Editing blogger:  www.edittorrent.blogspot.com.
- Craft of writing author: Articles archived at www.rasley.com.
- Latest book is The Year She Fell, from Bell Bridge Books.

Q:  What's the best kept secret about your writing process?

Alicia said:   Write or Die.  Yes, I need threats of annihilation to keep me focused!  It's a website that lets you choose a goal of X words in Y minutes, and has helped me get back to my previous ability just to free-write without editing. I trust my craft—my ability to write pretty well no matter what—and anyway, I will always edit later. This tool helps me distinguish between the two essential stages, writing and editing.

Q:  What character have you written or are writing that keeps you up at night - just one, please:)?

Alicia said:  Jon Holt. He's a cynical man who finds himself falling in love with a woman he can't trust, and now he can't trust himself either.  He realizes that whatever it takes, lying for her, covering up a murder, even killing for her, he's going to do it for love of her. And he's really pretty shocked to find himself as passionate and reckless and in love as that, because he's a rational, modern, scientific kinda guy.

Q:  What television or pop culture fictional character has had the greatest influence on your writing style and why?

Alicia said:  Well, Spike, of course. He is, to me, the absolute model for a hero who will give up everything for love. His kind of love isn't modern at all. There's no instinct for self-protection, no caution, no considering of consequence.  He's as heedlessly romantic as Tristan or Lancelot or Romeo, a true romantic hero like those in the troubadors' songs, only with fangs.

Q:  What book/author is the current "hot read" on your bookshelf?

Alicia said:  I'm embarking on a re-read of Georgette Heyer's books, actually, and will be blogging about it at my new Regency website (under construction, so ignore all the nails and hammers left about). I am entranced as always by the precision of her prose, the acuity of her perceptions on human nature, and the irony embedded in each line.  I think, at her best, and heresy alert here, she's better, at least on a sentence level, than Jane Austen. And I think Austen's pretty good.

Q:  What's your favorite drink on a hot August evening - and who (fictional or not, friend or family, celebrity or historic figure) would be sitting at your side enjoying that drink with you?

Alicia said:  I'd like Sangria with lots of fruit in the summer, and the Duke of Wellington. Actually, the Duke wouldn't have time to talk to me, as he always has some battle to plan, so he is welcome to delegate the chore to one of the handsomer members of his junior staff, and if the young officer is in one of those extravagant Regency-era regimental uniforms (with a sword), all the better.

Q:  Who's your favorite romance author and what would you ask them if you had the chance (or when you had the chance)?

Alicia said:  Dorothy Dunnett, and I actually did have the chance. Years ago, caught up in the cynical subtext of the House of Niccolo books, I wrote her a letter, enclosing my long treatise on why Primaflora, the courtesan in Lady Dunnett's third Niccolo book, was actually a tragic heroine, sacrificing her honor, his love, and her own life to save Niccolo. I know I was right, but she replied with great tact that no, Primaflora was no more than she seemed to be, a heartless gold-digger. Ha. This only reinforced my belief that the author often cannot see her own subtext. I remain Primaflora's champion, long after Lady Dunnett has left her and Niccolo behind.  I just wish I could send my treatise to Niccolo himself, for I know he never did realize how much she lost for love of him.

Q:  Last question…what question have you been dying to answer but no one has ever asked?

Alicia said:  What type of character are you most drawn to? Answer: Hmm.  Spike the heedless romantic lover. Jon the cynic who finds out he's really a romantic. Primaflora who sacrifices all (even the love of her lover) to save her lover… and secretly, so that only I noticed.

I'm sensing a pattern here: People who can love so totally that they risk everything, even their identities, for the one they love.  They don't fall in love seeking happiness, in fact, they usually give give up any chance of happiness to keep on loving. Love is about intensity, not pleasure, for them.

That's actually a fun question: What sort of character are you most drawn to?

Thank you Alicia. Now readers it's your turn. Alicia has put down the gauntlet so let's talk characters or just ask her questions, and don't forget...Happy Thursday!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday & Denny's Eye Candy

Italian actor Gabriel Garko snagged by Denny S. Bryce 

Wow! This week stormed by didn't it? Can't believe it's already time for Six Sentence Sunday.

I'm operating on enough sleep so I should have no excuse for not getting in some solid writing today. But participating in Six Sentence Sunday is a way to pump up your energy. I tell you it's not that easy to find six sentences that work for these little mini stories. But it's a great editing tool. Yes, it is. You really focus when you count those sentences and see if they work together, etc.  Anyway, rambling...enjoy the six and see you soon.

Oh, this 'six' is from an urban fantasy about a vampire FBI agent, a witch's coven and an ill-fated promise. This is not the hero's POV though:)...
He found her almost immediately and his breath caught in his chest. She was barely a woman, a girl really, with wavy brown hair and bright round eyes. Innocent and seductive all at once, she was not a deliberate temptress. It was her gift to tantalize.
She wove through the dancers, tall and coltish, her dark nipples peeking through a white cotton blouse unbuttoned delicately low. As she fanned her brightly colored skirt, her long brown hair swept across her face, and his eyes widened with fear.
When the book is published (always an optimist) you'll find this POV character nothing like the hotness in the photo. 

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Today's Thursday Treat: Special Guest - Author Joy Daniels

Photo of Sexy Mechanic snagged by Joy Daniels

It's the Thursday Treat at Denny S. Bryce's blog (that's me and this is where).  It will consist of guest bloggers from publishing including authors and writers and agents and editors, as well as some of my other artists pals who sing, dance, create games, and do all sorts of marvelous things. Launching the series is a writer who is a wild, sexy, fun-loving gal, who has all sorts of things to tell us about what she's up to, and what makes the writer girl in her tick.

So, here is my first guest blogger for Thursday's Treat, Ms. Joy Daniels!

Q:  Let's get to the facts right up front. What's your full author name, website, your latest release, the WIP that is keeping you up at night, your agent, your publisher, how long have you been writing…your successes? Yes, I want the mini bio right here, right now!

Name: Joy Daniels
Website: http://authorjoydaniels.com
Agent: Louise Fury, L. Perkins Agency
Publisher: not sure where we're going to submit my current short, but I'm working on a proposal for a novel with Ravenous Romance.

Under revision: Revving Her Up, an erotic short story about a New York lawyer whose car breaks down in a small town, forcing her to turn to a sexy mechanic for help.

It's the first in my "Rapture Series", a group of short stories, which feature northerners falling in love in/with the small town of Rapture, VA.

Next: a sexy story set in the capital of country, Nashville, TN! This is story that (currently) keeping me up at night.

I started toying with the idea of writing three or four years ago, but didn't turn to it seriously until I found myself facing layoff with nothing to do. OK, I had a four-month old, so I was BUSY, but without work, so I decided to try my hand at writing a novel. The time-off never materialized - I ended up falling into a consulting gig almost immediately - but I still wanted to write.  Of course, that was two and a half years ago, before I realized how challenging it would be!

Now I understand that writing is hard work - and I love it more than ever!

Successes: I've completed my first short story, which I'm revising after a round of edits from my agent, and I've been tapped to write a sexy novel. I'm pretty damned psyched about those!

(OMG when I first wrote the lines above, I wrote ..."which I'm not revising after a round of edits..."  Can you tell I'm feeling a wee bit guilty about that?)

Q.  What's the best kept secret about your writing process?


Joy said: While working on that critical first draft, I use timed writing software (Dr. Wicked's Write or Die) and wordcount challenges (Fast Draft, NaNoWriMo) to help me turn off my internal editor.

I have yet to discover such helpful tricks for the revisions process...

Q.  What character have you written or are writing that keeps you up at night - just one, please:)?

Joy said: One of the male leads from my Nashville story, a country singer named Rob, is on my mind all the time. He's a small town boy with longish blond hair, cocoa brown eyes and the kind of sleepy smile that makes you want to go right back to bed - with him!

Q.  What television or pop culture fictional character has had the greatest influence on your writing style and why?

Joy said: I don't watch much TV, but right now I can't stop thinking about John Mitchell from Being Human (BBC) and Eric Northman from True Blood (HBO).  Not because they're vampires, but because both men are strong, smart and complex - there's a lot going on behind those beautiful eyes.

I also get a lot of story ideas from country music. I started listening to country when I moved to MD from up north and now I am hooked! Something about the moods, the images, the ideas...The songs just inspire me to write - and to dance!

Q.  What book/author is the current "hot read" on your bookshelf?


Joy said: I am addicted to urban fantasy and when I fall in love with an author/series I pre-order every damned book.

My current obsessions are Nicole Peeler's Jane True series (http://www.nicolepeeler.com/the-jane-true-series/), Carolyn Crane's dis-illusionist series (http://authorcarolyncrane.com/), and Seanan McGuire's October Daye series (http://www.seananmcguire.com/toby.php).

I met the first two women at Authors After Dark in Philly last weekend (August 11 - 14) and discovered that they are as awesome as their books!

Q.  What's your favorite drink on a hot August evening - and who (fictional or not, friend or family, celebrity or historic figure) would be sitting at your side enjoying that drink with you?

Joy said: I love sangria made with dry red wine. As for who I'd be sitting with, the easy answer is my mom, who died six years ago. Alongside her, I'd be happy with any of the authors above plus my fav brainstorming/writing buddy Denny S. Bryce!

Q.  Who's your favorite romance author and what would you ask them if you had the chance (or when you had the chance)?

I like adventure with my romance so again the authors above come to mind.  Right now the question on my mind goes to Seanan McGuire - will Toby and the King of Cats get together?  It's killing me!

Q.  Last question…what question have you been dying to answer but no one has ever asked?


Joy said: How about the question everyone asks but that no one ever listens to the answer:
how do you do it - how are you so happy and productive, etc when there's so much to be down about?

Carpe diem. If my mother's death has taught me anything, it's that you have to live each day as though it were your last. All you ever get - all any of us get  - is time.  Don't waste it. 

Thank you Joy, now folks it's your turn.  Joy will be hanging around all day, and available to answer questions. Also, feel free to take one of the questions I've asked above and let us know your answer...inquiring minds want to know.  Happy Thursday!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday & Eye Candy

Photo of Taye Diggs snagged from the Internet by Denny S. Bryce

Here we are again, it's Six Sentence Sunday!!!

I've had a great week of writing. Wrote at least a 1000 words a day (okay, it was supposed to be 5,000 for Fast Draft), but it was lots tougher than I ever thought to actually write 5,000 words a day, but I will Fast Draft again! Believe me. What better way to jump start your first draft than a challenge?

I ended up with 25,000 words in two weeks, more than I've ever written ever! My goal is to keep going and will start Fast Draft Part II this Tuesday...see what I do with that!

I will be doing more of the same later this afternoon. In the meantime, I've been cleaning. It's a great way to brainstorm and get some plotting in. Seriously, you've got to have something else on your mind other than cleaning. Right!

Today six sentences...since I dabble in every genre at one time or another. I have a work in progress that doesn't have a title, but it's a YA fantasy about isolation and aliens (yes, those from outer space).

      She was tall for her age, maybe five feet seven inches tall, which in the universe of height wasn't all that tall unless you were a twelve-year old girl. Being so darn gigantic just added another layer to the oddity of being her. Not only was she smarter than everyone she knew, except her Uncle John, she also was taller than any other twelve year old girl on her planet. She wished she could forget about being a kid, especially since her colleagues never thought of her that way. Around them, she was a scientist. They ignored her wire-rimmed glasses, fat black braids and floppy bangs.
 Of course the other exciting thing about Six Sentence Sunday (next week I'm going to sign up for the list:) is the fact that it's also my day to salute men of color. Today's photo is Taye Diggs.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday - Redeux (Is That Allowed?)

Snagged from the Internet by Denny S. Bryce

I'm greedy today, and want to post two for Six Sentence Sunday - I missed last Sunday, but think I can get away with a twofer because (well, who's gonna stop me...hehehe:) and they are from two different WIPs...


The first is my futuristic urban fantasy set in a world where vampires have a caste system, and humans are either rich or live in Tunnel City (beneath the streets of DC)...so here goes:

Casey plastered a smile on her face, grabbed her coat and hat from the back of the chair, and strapped on her weapons belt. “I look forward to continuing my work as one of the SAV’s dedicated public servants.”

“There is no need for acronyms or sarcasm, young lady," Dr. V shot back. "As the Council of Ancient Vampires’ chief psychiatrist, I will monitor your activities for as long as I see fit and when I am convinced you have recovered completely, we will discuss your contract.”

Casey's fangs dug holes into her lower lip, but she manged to bow and say, “Yes, ma’am.” Then she headed for the door with a clear realization she had to accept.  If her eternal life were to remain in tact obedience to the Council was her only option.

The second is from my Fast Draft WIP...not doing as many words a day as I had hoped, but still hanging in there, and enjoying the process...

Now for those who know me, don't be surprised, this is a contemporary WIP, and I'm in love with the hero, but he's not in these six sentences...

“Hold on one moment,” Max said, rising to her feet. “We have delivered on every aspect of an outstanding program, designed and implemented to attract the audience we both agreed were your prime customers. The campaign has already produced overwhelming results with more than one thousand new bank accounts opened in the South Side branch alone. New investors joined your community outreach team with an initial infusion of capital that reached over one million dollars...and you’re telling us we were fired in a letter?” Max pushed her tongue against the inside of her cheek to keep from unleashing designer profanities that would make her grandmother get out of her coffin and scream. (Is this 7 sentences, damn:)...

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