Category Archives: Writing Craft

My Characters’ Miserable Lives & NOT Drawing from Personal Experience

A good friend of mine emailed me recently. She’d just finished reading Clean Burn, my crime novel from Exhibit A. Clean Burn’s heroine, Janelle Watkins, is, shall we say, edgy. Janelle comes from an abusive childhood, is twitchy and dark, … Continue reading

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Horse Trading, and Is Your Writing Really Ready?

Back in July, I blogged about how I was shopping for a new horse. I compared the process to figuring out which of the multitude of writing projects you might want to work on next. Then a few weeks later, … Continue reading

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Deadline Hell

Your regularly scheduled blog will return when The Denking Book is Done. And whoever stole my rewrite fairy wand had better return it NOW. Meanwhile, a kitten to soothe you.  

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Taking Responsibility for Your Pets–Or Your Fictional Characters

Almost three-and-a-half years ago, I had to say goodbye to my orange long-haired cat, Charlie. He was a wonderful cat, and sorely missed. But after a few months, I started thinking about how much I like having three cats and … Continue reading

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The Magical Formula for a Bestseller (Sorry, there isn’t one)

Some writer friends of mine just got back from the national conference of Romance Writers of America. This is a huge conference, jam-packed with workshops on both the craft and business of writing. When I was a member of RWA, … Continue reading

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Ghost Town Inspiration (How Bodie Became a Book)

Years ago, my mom and stepdad owned a family restaurant in the Eastern Sierras that overlooked Mono Lake. The Mono Inn was four miles north of the small town of Lee Vining, and Lee Vining was about a half mile … Continue reading

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The Trials and Tribulations of Book Surgery

Have you ever had a problem right in the middle of a sewing, craft or home improvement project? You’ve just realized you sewed the sleeve on inside out, or your embroidery thread is tangled in the middle of a satin … Continue reading

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Horse Shopping, Or, Choosing Among Writing Projects

I recently sold my beautiful Andalusian/Morgan mare, Belle. She and I had been together for eight years, and we learned a lot from each other. Now she’s off to a new home, helping another rider learn the fine points of … Continue reading

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Desert Island Necessities (What does an author really need?)

Imagine, if you will, that your cruise ship hit an iceberg, encountered a hurricane or wandered into the Bermuda Triangle. You’ve managed to escape unscathed and have landed on a desert island all by your lonesome. Abundant food is everywhere, … Continue reading

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Fake Blood and Shooting After Dark–the Making of a Vampire Flick

At this point in my career, I’m a dedicated novelist. I’m sticking to writing and promoting my traditionally published books like the Tankborn Trilogy and the upcoming Janelle Watkins mysteries, as well as my indie published romances. But there was … Continue reading

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