Friday, December 07, 2007

Golden Heart Prep Contest

***Permission to Forward***

North Texas RWA's Great Expectations Contest

Is your manuscript polished and off to the Golden Heart? Just have a polished first chapter? Well, have we got a GREAT contest for you !! Lots of feedback, category-specific score sheets, a super-fast turn-around,electronic or paper entries accepted.

Deadline = December 29th
enter = 25 pages & a query letter
fee = $25.00
judges = Contemporary Series: Megan Long with Harlequin Books, Erotic Romance: Raelene Gorlinksky with Ellora's Cave, Historical: Tessa Woodward with Avon Books, Inspirational: Melissa Endlich with Harlequin Books, Mainstream w/ Romantic Elements: Liza Schartz with NAL, Romantic Suspense: Allison Bandau with Berkley/Jove, Single Title: An editor TBD with Grand Central Publishing(formerly WarnerBooks,) Special (FFPTT): Chris Keeslar with Dorchester Publishing, Young Adult: Karen Chaplin with Puffin/Speak Books.

For detailed information, check out:

Kindle Concerns

There's been a bit of on-going discussion about's new e-book reader "Kindle." I discovered my book Tall, Dark & Dead is available in Kindle format. When I expressed some concern about this on BroadUniverse, I got a lot of confused looks, electronically speaking. When I asked if I was going to "get any money" for this, people patiently explained to me the Kindle was new technology and that OBVIOUSLY I wouldn't know if I was going to make a profit on it until I got my royalty statement.

Here's my reply: That's not how things normally work. When SF BookClub, for instance, wants to change the format of my book, i.e. publish its own version, they pay Penguin USA a fee UP FRONT -- an advance -- for the rights to do this. A percent of this advance is credited to my royalties. Any time anyone changes the format of my book (audio, book club, e-book), Penguin should get an advance BEFORE they make that new format available.

Of course, I may see royalties from the sale of my books on the same way I see royalties from any bookseller. But, think about it. If Uncle Hugo's decided to make an audio book of Tall, Dark & Dead available to their customers, Penguin USA would sue their a**es. Uncle Hugo's, though they have copies of the book laying around that they paid for, doesn't have the right to do anything but sell them in the format they bought them in. Can you imagine if SF Bookclub (or, let's say, I) said to themselves, "Hey, I know let's make an e-book of this book I bought at the store today. I'll just scan the pages here and I'm golden. I'll put it up on the web. Anyone can buy it."

That is exactly what did.

Penguin owns the right to all formats that my book could potentially appear in (book club, audio, e-book, etc.), in order to stop people from just randomly making their own versions available., as far as I understand it, certainly never paid Penguin an advance, because I'd have heard about it from my agent. This is the money I'm talking about.

It's not greed that makes me concerned, although I would expect to see some profit from any format change. If Bob Smith wants to sit down with Audacity and make a audio version of my book, I think he'd get sued for copyright infringement, which this is. Bob Smith doesn't have the right to SELL my book in any format other than the one Penguin Putnam produced (or any other publisher who bought those rights from Penguin.) And, Penguin doesn't have to wait for Bob Smith to make a profit. They should be paid in advance of publication of the new format. Period.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Kudos to Minnesota!

(December 6, 2007) — Osmo Vänskä and the Minnesota Orchestra today received a Grammy Award nomination for their acclaimed recording of Beethoven’s Ninth (Choral) Symphony, the third release in a five-disc cycle of the Beethoven Symphonies recorded on the BIS label. The nomination, the Orchestra’s first during Vänskä’s four-year tenure as music director, comes in the Best Orchestral Performance category. A full list of nominees is available at the Grammy Awards website,


My alternate personality has just joined Facebook, and I'm planning to open up an account for myself. However, my alternate personality just got bitten by a werewolf, and I'm wondering if any of you out there know if you can chose to join the game or does it have to be random? Thing is, I think it would be cool, of course, to become a vampire. Anyone willing to help me out?

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

OnLine Class: Productivity

Online class: January 2-31, 2008
"Defeating Self-Defeating Behaviors: Allow Writing Productivity & Creativity To Soar"
by Margie Lawson
Registration $30 at

Check out the new, expanded version of DSDB. It's Margie Lawson's popular and successful course with FIVE NEW TOPICS: The Power of Sleep, Stretch Breaks, Blasting Writer's Block, Optimizing Productivity, and . . . Simple Self-Hypnosis.

What's preventing your success? Thoughts? Behavior? Low energy? Procrastination? Perfectionism? Overdoing? Counter-productivity? Negative self-talk? Disorganization? Time mismanagement? Unrealistic expectations? Defeat your self-defeating behaviors with this one-month mental boot-camp. You'll explore the new topics, plus the list below, and more!

* Address the three fears that paralyze writers:
* Analyze yourself: Strengths, Weaknesses,Opportunities, Threats
* Challenge your internal dialogue
* Redirect resistance and manage your moods
* Duct-tape your Inner Critic
* Protect your priorities
* Practice Conscious Competence
* Apply Margie's DUH Plan

Margie Lawson’s resume includes counseling psychologist, college professor, hypnotherapist, and keynote speaker. Margie analyzes writing craft as well as the psyche of the writer. She presents 1) Empowering Characters’ Emotions, 2) Deep Editing: The EDITS System, Rhetorical Devices & More, and 3) Defeat Self-Defeating Behaviors in full-day master classes internationally. For more information, visit