Sunday, November 28, 2010

Writing Gimmicks


I was surfing the sites I like today. Should be writing, but needed to check my social networks and offer comments first. I’ve been waiting for something new for the ole blog to jump into my head, and then I had an epiphany in mid-browse. So here I am, writing as I should be—just on the wrong page and about the wrong content. It still counts, right?

How many of you out there write with music? I know, old subject, and not what I’m blogging about today, regardless of how this reads now. Hear me out before you run for the hills, or Christine Bell’s site (which is way more fun if you have to choose between the two escapes). Music is important to my writing, I’ve discovered. It affects my mood, content mood, sets a scene for me at times, like when one of those hot cowboys serenade! Yeah, I love country music best, though I listen to Katie Perry and other pop musicians. I dig 60’s music. So music is a good part of writing for me for various reasons—including blocking out hubby’s tv.

I also enjoy a writing treat. A snack I can take to the chair with me to keep my energy boosted, and my butt seated. Chocolate is a preferred snack, like the chocolate martini cheesecake I had yesterday during crits. Can you think of a better time to eat chocolate than during crits and revisions? Nope, me neither. And havta have my coffee. 

Add, to my list of writing gimmicks, friends. I have, absolutely NEED, to check in with others throughout the days, just to remind myself I’m not alone in this business. So often as a writer it tosses us into a closed room for hours of self-induced solitary confinement.  That’s where Twitter (find me @CalisaMS), Facebook/calisaselfridge, blogs, eHarlequin, various writing groups I chat with, and here-my blog- comes in. The wonderful people in the same industry boost my enthusiasm. They inspire me, whether through good writing or bad (in my opinion only), to write the best I personally can. To keep trudging forward toward publication. So I must keep them in my writing day.

But the real topic of the day—Scents. It came to me as I was not-writing-when-I-should-be today. I went to a gun and knife show in the city with hubby yesterday and—of course, why the heck not—there was a Scentsy booth smack dab in the middle of the many arms booths. My daughter had gone to a Scentsy party not long ago and gave me some of the Butterscotch. It’s not a candle, just the scented candle wax you put in a cutesy tin with a tea light underneath to melt it. The aroma goes everywhere. Hubby usually asks what I’m burning, or cooking, depending on the length of time it’s been on.
I stumbled across the scent booth at the show and stopped to ‘check it out’. No plain vanilla, my fave scent, but there were a few exotic vanillas I didn’t care for. Then, I dug in a basket and found Lavender Vanilla. I put that one to melt today and it makes me feel relaxed as I write. What a concept. 
So I’m wondering how my Christmas Berry, Cinnamon, Spiced Apple, and the other scents I normally use, affect my writing comfort. I’m now on a mission to try each at different times, maybe one a week, to see if they make me feel differently surrounded by the smells I love. Will my fave vanilla actually cause me to write less, faster, more clear-headed? Will Lavender Vanilla actually induce sleepiness by relaxing me too much? Oh, I hope not because I really like the new scent! Does Apple Spice make me hungry and I’ve just never noticed?
We’ll see what happens over the next month or two. I really enjoy my scents and have a few favorites. 

In the meantime, what does your ‘Writing Gimmicks’ list look like? What smells affect you in one way or another while writing? I really want to know if you out there use or do anything on a strictly routine—have to—basis to help you write.


Monday, November 15, 2010

My Heroes Have Always Been COWBOYS


Hearing the approaching vehicle, Garrett turned, gray eyes squinting against the glare of early morning sunlight reflecting off the windshield. A smile curved  full lips that had, moments earlier, pressed tight in concentration of chores. He started for the driver’s side of the car, his footsteps gaining speed the closer he got. Before he reached the door it swung open, and she lept out. His heart stalled with his breath. 

Sara. His reason for living was home. Never mind that she’d only been gone two hours, time stood still whenever she was away. It picked up where it had left off the instant she returned. 

Little did he suspect  that Sara carried him with her at all times.

The blue t-shirt hugged rippling pecs, arms taut and straining, as Garrett hefted another bale of hay. His butt tensed provocatively inside the softly aged material that fit like a second skin. He bucked hay with seemingly effortless ease onto the growing stack. When he removed the black cowboy hat to swipe sweat from his forehead, his brown hair ruffled in the light breeze, before he replaced the hat. Worn boots protected his feet as he swaggered with sure steps across the dusty, graveled yard to hoist another bale.

Sara was never without Garrett. He’d been permanently embedded into her mental retinas from the first moment she’d laid eyes on him. His mouth, the feel of his body, forever inlaid into hers from the first kiss. He was her man…her cowboy.
What woman wouldn’t want a man like Garrett?

Chapter By Chapter Romantics proudly presents our first cumulative blogfest, and in the spirit of Thanksgiving we are blogging about: HEROES We’re Thankful For.  We invite you to read a blog and then 'hop' on over to the next, and the next, until you've read about the hunky, sexy heroes we are thankful for!

Being a born and raised country girl- 
I’m thankful for those HEROES in cowboy boots.
Growing up I lived for those wild nights at rodeos. The men, animals, thrills...did I mention those drop-dead sexy cowboys? 

Back in my early days I hung out at rodeos. Can I say HEAVEN??? Most of my boyfriends in high school were cowboys. Most of my male friends were cowboys.
Love 'em. Those tall, silent and strong types who wear hats, boots, and ride horses. Is it any wonder? Can’t you just close your eyes and see Garrett (aside from the visual I've provided)? Don't you crave a devotion and love like his for Sara?
For me, there’s nothing more sexy than a man in tight jeans and a shirt that makes me jealous of the way it’s allowed to cover and hug that masculine body. The way a cowboy hat sits regally atop his head as if daring me to remove it. 

One of my favorite movie scenes is from the movie, Smokey and the Bandit. Burt Reynolds had just rescued Sally Fields from a disastrous wedding and she changed from her billowy white dress into jeans and shirt in the back seat of his black Trans Am. 
She’s sitting beside him as they fly down the back country road when she turns to him and asks, “Do you always wear that hat?” “Always.” “You never take it off?” He gazes at her with a cocky grin… 
“Lady, I only take this hat off for one thing.” It’s then she reaches over and takes his hat off—and then they abandon the road for a dense copse of trees. :D
Okay, that may not be verbatim, and Burt Reynolds is no cowboy, but he’s as sexy as all get out in that scene!
Cowboys, to me, represent what a real man is all about. A hero who protects women, cherishes babies, and doesn’t falter in his own deep rooted beliefs. He’s also always sexy as hell! And he always, always gets the girl. But more than that- he knows how to admit when he's wrong. He takes responsibility for his own actions, and often those of the ones around him.

I believe this is why I'm drawn to writing about those men. Because of what they stand for. The honor and deep sense of believability, respect. And -- because they drive me crazy!
Any man can wear jeans, snazzy bling-bling shirts, a cowboy hat, and drive a fancy truck with a rifle rack in the back window. Doesn’t make him a ‘cowboy’ if he ain't got a horse or bull trailing behind him, or or under him. My dad always called those guys drugstore cowboys. There's a movie about these cowboy wanna-bes, Urban Coyboy, with John Travolta and Debra Winger. Great movie. One of my favorites. The characters rode electronic bulls in a bar. Wore fancy clothes and shiny boots, and had never been on a live bull, much less sat a horse. Drugstore cowboys.
It’s those men in dust covered boots, who ride like the devil’s after them, and know how to treat a lady that gets my blood pumping! Those, whose idea of bling is the glare of sun hitting their spur rowels. My kinda guy.

What about you? What's your hero like?  Is he a cowboy? Come on and dish.
Comment and follow my blog -since you're already here and you know you're dying to return- Then take a peek at these heroes from my gals of CBC.

Don’t forget to leave a comment and follow each of them -same reasons above apply. This is a subliminal message- letting us know who your favorite heroes are!


Friday, November 5, 2010

Better late...


I’m remiss. No excuse other than I plain out forgot. Three weeks ago (or maybe four) I announced that hubby and I were off to sunny California for a week, actually 9 daysthat morphed into 13 lovely days. At the time I was trying to decide which book to read on the flight/trip, either Michelle Willingham’s Surrender to an Irish Warrior (I LOVE this series), or Brenda Novak’s suspenseful The Perfect Liar. I promised to let you know which I chose ‘in two weeks’, after the trip and I had a chance to read whichever book I selected.

Well, that’s what I forgot to do. I came in here instead telling about our new dog, Molly-the-Jack-Russell-Terrier. Oh, how I fell hard for the  little dog. Unfortunately, so did hubby’s client’s 5 yo daughter who had recently lost her Jack Russell. I felt bad for her, really. She loved her dog, took her everywhere in cute little outfits. I knew it was fate when her mom and dad told us the missing dog was named…Molly. I cried as I allowed my sweet Molly to go into a loving house to cheer up a small child. I get to see her and she hasn’t forgotten me. But, I cry each time I have to leave her all over again, even though she's very happy. 
Molly and her little girl

ANYWAY… so, for the trip I thought about turbulence and my not to comfortable willingness to fly—don't planes fall from the sky?and so I chose Brenda Novak. Suspense won over hunky Irishman…this time! And guess what? I still haven’t finished it. 

I got home and dove right into Perfect Doctor Viv, my HQ Medical that is supposed to be back in me editor’s hands by Christmas. Aren’t I a good girl? You can check and watch the progress of this building love story waaayyyyyy down at the very bottom of my blog page, along with progress of HOME. Don’t remember HOME? It’s the Vietnam story I began back in July. It’s almost complete now, in the hands of critiquers for the first time. I still have the black moment (BBM) to finish, but I’m waiting to see how it flows  this far before I do.

So busy, busy me this month. Happy to be getting words on paper at a steady rate.
Although I’ve discovered Twitter! 
So look me up, follow me @CalisaMS (no pic currently), or Facebook me @ Calisa Selfridge. Look for the same picky as is my blog profile pic right now, but it will change soon so hurry!
Commercial over…


Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Nothing but FUN!!!!!!!!!


As promised- I hope- here are a few pictures from my night of trick-or-treating with the kids. And yes, I totally scyped candy! My grandbabies are very good about sharing with me.

My favorite and new (temp) profile pic. Yes, I was a punkin. :)

                                             Me with the babies. Andee, Nikkia, Me, Kaia

I love the awesome, God-provided sunset as we were winding up the night! Too beautiful to fake. And it made for an excellent backdrop.

My oldest, and 7 months pregnant, daughter Calais with hubby Joey and baby jaguar, Kaia.

Youngest fey daughter, Stephanie with her husband, Kris and baby kitty, Nikkia

Middle daughter, Keri, couldn't be there. Her daughter, cat woman, Andee,
went with her daddy, Mike, his girlfriend and their 8 mo son, Adrian.


                                                                           Self explanatory... :)

And what's Hallowe'en without.....

            Tigger and Pooh?

 Or perhaps....                 

Something only my granddaughter and her cousin could find while bagging candy!

                                                ....yes, a live frog.

All-in-all, it was a wonderful, and successful evening!