Archive for September, 2009

21
Sep
09

Confessions of a Google-holic

Sitting in the park yesterday, on a perfectly lovely autumn morning, I did a little writing the old-fashioned way. I’m usually all about the electronica, but when the little one needs some fresh air, I’m perfectly willing to leave the battery-challenged laptop at home and scribble away in a notebook. No, not the cute Apple kind of ‘notebook’ that comes in so many lovely colors. I mean a cheap, three-subject, spiral-bound block of paper I bought at the drugstore. And sometimes my best work comes out this way. Yesterday was not one of those days. Sure, the scene I wrote was inspired, dramatic, and just what was needed to move the plot and characterization along, however, the whole scene went right in the trashcan. Why? Because it was based on something that DOES NOT happen. [Cindy takes a moment to decide whether to laugh or cry]

Here’s what I learned today—When you step on a landmine it does not make a loud click and it will do one of two things 1. Immediately explode or 2. Wait a few seconds and then explode. There’s none of this Hollywood melodrama where the soldier or, better yet, his commanding officer hears the telltale sound of a landmine arming itself and has time to say, “Son, don’t move. Keep your foot right where it is.” Because even if the soldier stayed as still as a marble statue, the thing’s gonna explode. Who knew? Well, apparently weapons experts and military history buffs all over the web know this, but those of us who glean most their munitions knowledge from movies and TV have been seriously misled. Not surprising. The myth began due to some US propaganda during World War II designed to make the German S-mine, the famous ‘Bouncing Betty’, seem like something soldiers could outsmart. Not only is it untrue, but freezing is the worst thing you could with this type of anti-personnel weapon. With a bounding mine, it’s better to hit the deck. It only goes to show, even things you think you know bear double-checking with a Google search. Which brings me to my next point, have I become so dependent on Google that I can’t write without it?

Okay, clearly I CAN write without it, but the question is, should I? I mean, luckily this time I double-checked my facts before my editor—or worse, a fan—pointed out to me that I’m a doofus. Or is it okay to take certain liberties with the truth if the unrealistic situation works best in the novel? Hollywood does it all the time. See, this is why writers are great big balls of neurosis. I suppose it’s up to each author and publisher to decide what’s poetic license and what’s over the top. But for me, in this case, I feel it’s better to rewrite the scene than to rely on bad propaganda turned urban legend. Not to mention, if I’ve seen it enough times to have adopted it as fact, I could probably be more creative. No need to rely on hackneyed story-telling devices. Today, I’m back at the laptop reworking my brilliant scene so that it’s both genius and believable.

So, all you writers out there, how much fact do you weave into your fiction? And how much inaccuracy are you comfortable with? Inquiring minds want to know!

What’s your favorite method of research
(polls)

20
Sep
09

First Kiss Friday

FirstKissFriday

07
Sep
09

Het Daze

LCHGSContrary to what some folks may believe by my current ‘obsession’, I, Sage, used to read heterosexual romance. Okay, so that isn’t all that far-fetched. About three or four years ago that was all there was to read–excluding bios. Now, with the popularity of gay fiction I consume anywhere from 3-10 books a month. (Mostly ebooks.) TMWOR

Yet, I have never forgotten my romance roots, although I barely dig them up to look at them anymore. I even started off writing m/f fiction, and I have loads of half-finished stories stuffed in closets and drawers or in storage in the attic, but once I got bitten by the gay fiction bug I never turned back.

There are a handful of romance authors that are still on auto-buy for me though I have to be in the mood to read them. I decided to share some of my favorite authors on this post. Perhaps if you are a fan of m/f romance you will find some new authors to check out. KMMSOH

1. Teresa Meideros–extemely talented, exceptional, hilarious, prolific. I have “never” been disappointed with any of her stories. Her heroines are enchanting, and her heroes are ‘swoon-worthy” if a gal were still inclined to swoon. *g* I recommend anything from her. She is THAT good, IMHO.

2. Lisa Cach–severly underated, hilarious, thought provoking, giggle-inducing. I don’t know why Lisa Cach isn’t as big as some authors, but don’t overlook her. Like Teresa, I have never been disappointed by Lisa. Her books transport you to a different world for hours at a time, and you’ll only come back if you’re dragged kicking and screaming.TMYUD

3. Karen Marie Moning–exceptional, blush-inducing, poignant. All I have to say is that I aspire to write my heroes with some semblance of hawtness that she does. If you like the ultimate Alpha hero then you won’t be disappointed. Her heroines are nothing to shake a stick at either. They are all intelligent, resourceful, independent,  and humorous.

06
Sep
09

The Liar

marcus patrick6Excerpt from The Liar. I realize the first post I made was taken from a portion that could probably not be understood without more detail so here is my second attempt.

Jasha Osei was a rare breed. The kind of man who thought he wanted to run the show when his every action was begging for someone else to take the reins. Jasha seemed startled when Dade asked him to help prepare the chicken salad he had planned for lunch, but the man responded beautifully to direction. Jasha never made objections or hesitated to do what he was told.

Dade also introduced some experimental touches into their interplay. While they worked around each other in the kitchen, Dade made sure he brushed against the other man, or when he was demonstrating the proper way to slice a tomato or peel a cucumber he made sure to hover too close, to crowd Jasha without alarming the man.

Again, Jasha responded in the way he predicted, pressing into his touches, leaning his weight back against Dade without seeming to know what he was doing. Jasha was a hedonist in disguise; his true nature locked away because of fearing generalizations and the dictates of society. Successful men in America were dominant, aggressive, skirtchasers and to be anything else was to be less of a man.

Dade had heard it all, but the difference between him and Jasha was that he knew better.  Men came with all kinds of appetites and there was no right or wrong way to be. Jasha probably thought his desire to be dominated was kinky and outrageous, but really, he’d only just touched the tip of the iceberg.

There is so much that I would teach you.

Cuffs. Collars. Obedience training. Dade could hardly wait to start, but he had a feeling Jasha would fight him all the way. A professional liar could do his job so well that he even began to fool himself.

***

Sitting down to lunch, Jasha was wary of what Dade wanted from him. He could tell the man wanted something. He could read the anticipation in his body language, could see it in those assessing eyes. And then there were the touches. Jasha couldn’t tell if Dade thought he was being subtle or didn’t care if he knew it was on purpose.

He should probably speak up and tell him to stop. He wasn’t the type to bite his tongue, only now he found that the words wouldn’t come. Truth be told, he liked the touches. They were so unlike the fluttery touches of his ex-fiancee. Dade’s touches were sure, firm, directing his actions— fraying his nerves.

Jasha had chosen to sit in the farthest seat from Dade. He wasn’t thinking properly when Dade was too close. It was confusing and a bit scary to realize Dade went to his head like a shot of Novocain. He wasn’t sure what it was about the man that made him more docile than he was used to. Sure, Dade was handsome, sinfully so, but lots of men were handsome, cocky, self-assured, and bossy.

But none of them were Dade Savage.

*Picture above is what Jasha Osei looks like in my head. He is of mixed ancestry. Irish, Portugese,  and West African.




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