Monday, November 30, 2009

Stupid Pleasures

I'll admit it. Sometimes I discover an odd show on television and then I have to record it. My latest discovery is Ninja Warrior. It's filmed in Japan and is a competition of strength and agility where men and women compete against a course. If you fail an obstacle, you land in icky water. Check out this video:

Lots of upper body strength and balance required. And there's some interesting characters that show up for every competition even though they tend to fail miserably and often funnyily (new word) on the first obstacle.

So what's your stupid television pleasure?

Deadly DeLeon

Friday, November 27, 2009

Stuff to be thankful for

Happy day-after Thanksgiving! I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday and are still gorging on leftovers. I had a wonderful day with lost of family, lots of food, and lots to be thankful for. But more on that later… first I have an apology to make. If anyone stopped by last Friday you might have noticed something. Or a lack of something, namely, my blog post. Yep, I totally forgot. I’m claiming baby induced amnesia. It makes me forget everything. I won’t even go into how many times the big boy has called me from school politely asking if I planned on picking him up that day. Doh! So, sorry for missing you all last week!

But, in addition to the duh! moments brought on by baby, I also had another really good reason for forgetting to blog last week. (Here comes the stuff I had to be thankful for part…) I was celebrating. Big time. Remember those “other projects” I was talking about a couple weeks ago? Well, I can officially announce what they are now. Last week I contracted for 4 (yes… 4!) new books in 2 new series! Wanna know what they are? (Please say, yes, ‘cause I’m dying to share...)

I sold two books in a brand new mystery suspense series to St. Martin’s Press. And, get this, they’ll be published in hardcover. (Zoiks!) The fist book in the series is called PLAY DEAD, and is a Mr. & Mrs. Smith style story about a former assassin who fakes her death to escape the life. Only 15 years later someone has caught up to her and is making it his mission to see that she stays dead for good this time. PLAY DEAD should be out in 2013.

And, as if that didn’t make my week enough, I also sold the first two books in a new young adult mystery series to Harper Teen! The first of those, DEADLY COOL, will be out in 2012 and centers around a 16 year old high school student who turns amateur sleuth when her cheating boyfriend becomes the prime suspect in a murder case.

To say I’m excited about these new projects is a total understatement. I can’t wait to get started on them! Now, all I have to do is find time to write all these books. Not to mention the next book in my Hollywood Headlines series. Gee, it’s a great thing I don’t have any distractions like a new baby or anything. ;)

So, how was everyone else’s week?

~Trigger Happy Halliday

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

The Assassin Gets Schooled...

Mr. Assassin, lookin' good in Baghdad.

So, we're sitting around the table and my friends are talking about sex. They are complaining that they only have it once in a while and how that's not enough.

Me: Oh, that's real nice. Considering I'm not going to get any until May! Pass the saltpeter please.

Friend-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named: (she's a single mom) At least you know WHEN you're going to get it next!

Happy Thanksgiving! (I'll be eating a little crow.)

The Assassin

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Time To Be Thankful . . .

Winner!!!!!!!!!!!!! Chelsea B. Your name was pulled out of the hat. Please email me you snail mail address at christie (at) christie-craig (dot) com

And make sure you come back next week, I'll be running another contest.


Time To Be Thankful—It’s Release day for Another Christie Craig Book

It’s almost Thanksgiving, but today’s the day. Divorced, Desperate and Deceived hits the stands. Today, readers will see my baby looking up from the bookshelves. I’m hoping the cute puppy on the front will reach out and pull the potential buyers in and beg them to take it home with them.

You’d think that after having had six novels—five from Dorchester and my very first from Silhouette years ago—hit the stands, the thrill and the anxiety would have faded. Not quite. Oh, I’m no longer hiding out in the bookstores, wearing a wig and a trench coat, taking notes to how many people pick it up, and blocking people’s path when they try to walk past it without noticing my masterpiece. Nope, I’m over that. (Funny how a couple of restraining orders can take the thrill out of my promo efforts.) Now, I just hang out at the grocery and drug stores and slip it into people’s baskets when they aren’t looking. Much better success. I’m kidding, but it is tempting.

Ahh, but the thrill of a new release hasn’t changed. I still almost have to pinch myself. I think one reason I still feel the high is because I worked so hard to get here. I heard so many “Noes” before I finally got my “Yeses.”

When I do my rejection dump at writer conferences, I often get asked, “How did you do it? How did you keep going?”

The answer is rather simple and I’m afraid I’m not near as wonderful as you might think. I just couldn’t quit. Writing is in my blood, these stories come to me and if I don’t write them, I don’t get to find out what happens to the characters. Writing is a big part of what defines me. However, when I look back, I remember the sting of those rejections, but you know what I remember most? I remember, and I’m forever thankful for everyone who helped me keep going: The contest judges who read my manuscripts and said such wonderful things about my work or gave me a little suggestion. My critique partners who keep saying, “It will happen, Christie. It will.” My family who saw me put hours upon hours into a career that gave nothing back for year, after year, after year, and yet they never lost faith in me.

I’m even thankful for those rejections. They made me stronger, they made me work harder. So today, I hope if there is something you’re working toward, I hope you have people to support you, I hope your dream is so tightly wound around who you are that quitting isn’t an option. Because I’m here to tell you, meeting goals is something to holler about, it’s something to celebrate. It’s downright awesome.

And you guys are awesome, too. Without you, without readers, I wouldn’t have this career. So thank you all. Happy Thanksgiving. Now, it’s your turn to tell me what you are thankful for. One lucky commenter will win a signed copy of my book.

And don’t forget to visit me and read my humorous blogs at these other sites where I’m also giving away books:

West of Mars: (What Song reminds me of my book?)
Romance in the Backseat Questions I get asked most often.)
Enchanted by Books: (Five Things you Didn’t Know About Christie Craig) See I still have a few secrets.)

I also have a humorous feature posted at Dorchester: What it Takes To Be A Christie Craig Character. Along with the feature, we’re running another contest, a short essay contest, "Do You Have What it Takes to be a Christie Craig Character?" and I’m giving away a wonderful cozy Cypress housecoat and a copy of Divorced, Desperate and Deceived.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Monday Afternoon Movie Review

Sorry, guys. Got busy this morning and half a day got away from me. Saw The 4th Kind yesterday. For those of you that haven't seen trailers, the 4th kind of contact is when aliens abduct you. The movie was touted as based on the real-life story of a doctor in Nome, Alaska and has what is purported to be original footage of interviews mixed with reinactments of everything else.

Of course, that tall tale didn't last very long, and someone blew the whistle on them and pointed out that there is no "real" story - it's all a marketing ploy a la Blair Witch Project, if any of you remember that marketing hype.

So it's all a big fake, but the movie was decently done. Nothing to get excited over and likely more of a rental than full pop for the movie theater, but I've definitely seen worse. Paranormal Activity was definitely more creepy, though.

Hope you all have a great Thanksgiving!

Deadly DeLeon

Sunday, November 22, 2009

November 24th, is release day for Christie Craig's Divorced, Desperate and Deceived and she's going to be guest blogging all over the internet and giving away free books:

Her own blog Killer Fiction:
Romance in the Backseat

She also has a humorous feature posted at Dorchester: What it Takes To Be A Christie Craig Character. Along with the feature is running another contest, a short essay contest, "Do You Have What it Takes to be a Christie Craig Character?" and she's giving away a wonderful cozy Cypress housecoat and a copy of her book.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Black Friday '09 anyone?

A week from tomorrow it happens again. Throngs of intrepid bargain-hunting warriors will hit the malls and department stores in search of those great deals that last from 5 AM - 9 AM or 11 AM depending on the chain. Already there are websites set up with 'leaked' Black Friday ads so serious shoppers can plan their attacks.

Okay. So I'm usually one of them. And yes, I've peeked at those ads once or twice. And made a few lists. But this year's list is different from past years'. For me--and I suspect--for many other Americans who are feeling the pinch. While Christmas is generally a time for gift 'wishes' to come true, this year I imagine many folks will be a bit more--discriminating--in their purchases, going for functionality over flair.

Times are tough all over. Many state governments are facing huge budget deficits and must cut their spending to balance their checkbooks. Our state is no different. To avoid drastic layoffs, furlough days (i.e. days off without pay) have been mandated. So Santa will have to tighten his rather large belt this year.


So here's how my shopping list has adapted to the new budget restrictions:

Wish I Could
42 inch LCD HDTV
New HP Laptop
Cashmere Sweaters
Wii system with Wii Fit
Large set of pots and pans

$2 DVDs
8 GB Flash Drive
Electric throw
$8 running suit
Micro meals

You get the idea...sigh.

Good thing Christmas isn't about the gifts.

So how is your gift-giving shaping up? Are you changing your purchasing habits this year? Buying less? Going for needs rathers than 'wants'? Will you be venturing out among the masses come next Friday morn?

Even though I won't be power-shopping this year, I'll probably drag my tail to the local stores to observe the craziness. Purely for writing research purposes, of course. :)

~Bullet Hole~

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Yet Another Reason Why the Assassin Shouldn't Eat Lucky Charms With a Diet Coke Chaser For Dinner...

Why, yes! I painted my living room orange. Doesn't everyone who's anyone do that? Well, except for Deadly Deleon, who favors turquoise. Nothing rhymes with turquoise either, btw.

Actually, the shade is "Mandarin." I feel like I'm inside a pumpkin. A very, happy pumpkin that smells like 2 kids, 3 dogs, 2 cats, 3 guinea pigs and lots and lots of Febreeze.

Orange has become my signature color over the past two years. My iPod is iPod skin is orange...I have an orange cover for my phone and an orange skin for my Kindle. I have orange purses, shoes, scarves, pens and scissors (which, by the way, you should never run with).

I wonder what my favorite color says about me? Maybe my love for the color orange implies that I'm warm, a vegetable who never runs the risk of getting scurvy.

Margaret's favorite color is black. Black isn't really a color, now is it? It's just the complete absence of light. So how can it be her favorite? I think she is disqualified.

What if your favorite color was chartreuse? Or puce? Or worse, taupe? That would truly be tragic.

My living room used to be taupe. It was very dull. I like the orange. What do you think?

The Assassin

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Twenty-five Years and Counting

WINNER! Sandy you have won the autographed copy of Divorced, Desperate and Deceived. Please shoot me you snail mail address at my email: christie (at) Christie (-) Craig. com
Contest, Contest, Contest! Contests all over the place! For the next three weeks, I’ll be holding contests all over the Internet and at Killer Fiction. I’ve written some funny posts for numerous guest blogs. And every blog will not only make you laugh, but I’m offering prizes to a lucky commenter at every link, so make sure you pop over and leave a comment. If you win my book and already have it, I’ll trade it for another one of my books, or I’ll send you a copy of one of my many writer friends’ books.

Today, I’m also going to be over at: Pop over and read my funny blog about some of the goofs hubby did while we were courting. You might even wonder why I married the man.

And then on Thursday, November 19th, I’ll be over at Magical Musing: There you can read about how a conversation with a lady at the post office ended up in me giving her lessons on what you can learn from both my book, Divorced, Desperate and Deceived and what you can learn from the romance genre in general. All romance readers will love this one! And now for my post:

Twenty-five Years and Counting

Today is my wedding anniversary, guys. For twenty five years I’ve put up with, I mean . . . had the pleasure of living with Steve Craig. You’ve read about him, his flaws and his attributes. And that’s what a marriage is all about. You can’t just love a man for his attributes; you have to love his flaws, too. Okay, we don’t have to love their flaws, but we have to be able to laugh at them, to tolerate them, and to see them as part of the package.

Recently a dear friend sent me a link to an amazing video. I’m warning you up front. You’re gonna laugh and you’re gonna cry. But for me the video really brought home something I’ve always believed and I think believing it makes me a better romance writer. It’s not a secret, it’s a simple truth: The imperfections of a person are often what makes a person perfect.

Take my hubby for example. (And I don’t mean that literally, because I’m not giving him away.) He’s cheap. That’s right, the man is Scottish and has deep pockets and short arms. Ahh, but those short-arm, penny-wise ways of his allowed me to pursue my writing dreams. And while his thriftiness has led to several man/wife conversations, he is always more frugal when it comes to himself than when it comes to me. Case in point: I go to my hairdresser every six weeks, (she’s good and not cheap!) he goes every four. However his hairdresser is yours truly. That’s right, he gets moi to cut his hair. And let’s just say that I write better than I wield a pair of clippers. However, he insists it’s not his thriftiness that leads to his choice of hairdressers, but his desire to cop a feel of the lady clipping, and he doesn’t think I’d allow that with the gals at Super Cuts. He’s right.

He snores. Yup, a hero that snores. Ahh, but when he’s out of town, the midnight silence brings emptiness to my lonely heart. When he’s home, I wake up, hear the comforting roar that reminds of a bear trying to use his voice after hibernation, then with the poke of an elbow the noises fade and I sleep knowing I have the man I love beside me.

His other flaw is his loud bodily functions. Now, I don’t mean the occasional broccoli-inducing gas. (He doesn’t care too much for broccoli.) I’m not even talking about the rear-wind action. I’m talking about upper bodily functions. The man’s nostril excretion technique can take out an ear drum. Seriously, when we’re in a car, he’ll shot out a pre-second warning. “Sneeze on board!” I must immediately cover my ears. Once I was on the phone with a friend and he sneezed in the car and it hurt her ear drums! Now if that isn’t bad enough, when the man is unfortunate enough to catch a stomach virus, or to slip up and forget to ask for no ice in Mexico, well, let’s just say that the neighbors regularly stop by and inquire about his health. That’s what I tell him anyway. In truth, they’re really asking when the noise will stop. You see, when my hubby loses his lunch, it involves supernatural uses of his vocal cords. The guttural boom starts out low and builds to a crescendo of something that sounds like a half moan/half lion roar.

Now when I asked hubby about what quirks/flaws I have, he tells me, “You’re perfect.” Of course, that means he’s lying, but it also means I’ve trained him well.

I know this because loving someone for twenty-five years doesn’t mean they’re perfect, it means that their flaws have never outweighed their good qualities. In my hubby’s case, it means that he puts up with my single-mindedness when I’m under deadline, that he tolerates my messy bathroom countertop, that he understands my insecurities born from a my first marriage, that he accepts my never-iron-for-a-man policy, that he appreciates the woman I’ve become, even though there’s a little bit more of her than there was when he married me.

You may wonder how this man puts up with a wife who blogs about all his quirks. Well, when I was telling him about this blog, he said, “But you didn’t mention my sneezing or barfing.” So thank you, hon’ for helping to make this blog funnier. And thanks for a wonderful, humorous, twenty-five years! (Yes, he really does read all my blogs.)

Today, what I’d like to hear from you is, what quirks/flaws make your man perfect? Or what quirks/flaws are you willing to tolerate in Mr. Right now or when he shows up? What is Mr. Right going to have to tolerate in you?

Make sure you leave a comment. Remember, I’m giving away a signed copy of Divorced, Desperate and Deceived, so pop over to the other blogs and come back tomorrow morning to find out who won, and stop off every Tuesday for a list of where I’ll be guest blogging and hosting more contests.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Monday Morning Movie Review

I had to do it.....had to go see 2012, along with the rest of Texas. I know, I know, but I love those world ending, sorta weirdness movies. I was hoping for an alien return, but this movie didn't take that angle at all. Bummer.

The acting was pretty good. I like John Cusak, which helps. The plot was pretty good and the special effects were great (of course), but the movie made that fatal flaw that I cringe now when I see it - the last seconds of the world reveal by the ONLY person who can actually prevent the world from ending. I will make up a fake example so as not to give away plot:

Robot voice: 30 seconds until the end of the world.
Hero: I'll always love you. No matter what happens. Remember that picnic in college, the one where you had on that pink sweater with the white daisies? ..........
Robot voice: 20 second until the end of the world.
Hero: Son, I was always proud of you, even though I didn't say it enough. Remember that football game where you threw for ten touchdowns and nailed that cheerleader after the game.........
Robot voice: 10 seconds until the end of the world.

Seriously? Really? C'mon Hollywood. Please give up this overused, ridiculous, not-in-the-least poignant waste of screen time. Have you heard of pacing???????? My editor would kill you for this.

Deadly DeLeon

Friday, November 13, 2009

Ode to Sleep

Oh, precious sleep, how I miss thee
The hours upon my pillow spent,
When dreams were left to roam free,
And REM cycles heaven sent.
Alas, our union was not to last,
Shattered by wails with no end,
Baby bottles, burp cloths, and diaper pails.
Sleep - a thing of the past,
Until we meet again my friend,
Starbucks must suffice to cure my ails.

~Trigger Happy Halliday

P.S. Check out the new stories and content on!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Sharing my sunrise!

I'm a sucker for colorful horizons. Show me a fabulous sunrise or sunset and I want to immortalize that moment. Most of the time I don't have a camera with me to snap those memorable panaramas (I still have a 'dino-phone' that doesn't include the camera feature) but this morning when I pried my eyes open at half past five and stumbled to my office and opened the curtains , I was met by a truly fabulous sunrise. Throwing a coat over my jammies (See the lengths I go to in order to share these special moments with you all!) I grabbed my camera and went out front to take these colorful shots. As I said, I'm a sucker for a good sunrise or sunset.

I suppose I should also admit that nature's picturesque array came at the perfect time. I was blogless. Yes. I totally blanked on my blog this week. I had nothin'. I was up 'til the wee hours working (and reworking) a series proposal that simply would not cooperate. You see, I had to take two 14 page double-spaced synopses and cut them down to 2 pages of single-spaced text. While these stories actually feature some serious 'slicing and dicing' by the bad guy, taking a scalpel to trim the fat in my writing has always been a challenge for me. I stew over every word. And it's tough to look at your own synopsis the way an editor or agent do. You know your story inside and out. You know the characters and their motivations. You know their flaws and how and why they react as they do. But putting the right balance of plot versus motivation into a clear, concise synopsis someone totally unfamiliar with the project can understand and follow and not have big, gaping holes in your narration that are crucial to projecting a comprehensive storyline is a balancing act worthy of Barnum and Bailey.

I HATE synopsis writing!!! Do I hear an AMEN??!!

So just for a few more minutes I am going to just enjoy my serene and spectacular sunrise. Then, I'll pick up my meat cleaver and carving knife and attend to those 12 stubborn lines I still need to slice and dice.

Writing is NOT for wimps.

~Bullet Hole Bacus~

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Angels in My Backyard

This, is what an angel looks like.

This, is a dog whose face I shaved. This, is not an angel. (Trust me on this.)

This, is the back of a bassett's head. Again, not an angel.

This, is what an angel looks like.

My point? These two people, Dawn and Les, brought kids to my house Sunday at one of the lowest points in my month, and cleaned my gutters and raked my backyard. I was quite surprised when I came home to find them there.

The bassett hound and muppet did nothing to help.

Thanks Dawn, Les, Charlie, Heather and Ian! (And thanks for nothing Luke Skywalker and Muppet.)

The Humble Assassin

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The Optimist Goes Against the Pessimist: Who’s Going to Win?

Have I shared the fact with you that my DH, my man in shining armor, my better half, is a pessimist? Notice how I still have nice things to say about him in spite of my telling the truth. That’s just part of my optimist personality. Nevertheless, if you ask him about his outlook, he’ll tell you he’s simply a realist. Sorry sweetie, but I’m not buying it and I don’t think you guys will, either. I’m telling you, his outlook on life is downright cynical. He’s a Gloomy Gus, a naysayer if I’ve seen one.

Case in Point: Halloween night we’re planning to go out for a nice dinner. Hubby says, “We won’t need to buy any candy to pass out.”

I say, “Yes we do. Even if we aren’t here, I’ll set the candy out on the porch, leave the light on, and let the kids take their own.”

Hubby rolls his eyes, and starts laughing. “What are you smoking?” (In my defense, I don’t smoke anything.)

“Why?” I asked.

“Please, if you leave the candy on the porch, the first bunch of kids to come by will take it all, plus our bowl.”

I look at him and frown. “Do you always have to think the worse?”

“Fine,” he says. “Put the candy out and let’s see. Let’s see who’s right.” Then he resorts to using the R word. “I’m just a realist.”

Realist. my butt! When the economy got tight, and I’ll admit it’s tight, but he starts saying he’s gonna lose his job. He looks for it to happen every Friday, even though he hasn’t heard hide nor hair about a layoff about to happen. Last thing he says when he leaves for work every Friday is, “Today’s probably the day.” But it’s not just about his job or just about Fridays. He wakes up every morning and basically says, “I wonder what terrible thing is gonna happen today.”

I call him on it all the time. He’ll come home and I’ll say, “So what terrible thing happened?”

He looks at me and shrugs and answers, “Nothing. Why?”

I roll my eyes and remind him of his premonition. He just looks at me and says, “Yeah, that’s the way I work. I expect the worst to happen and then I’m pleasantly surprised when it doesn’t.”

I’m frowning big time at this point. “But what about all the stress you put yourself under by thinking the sky is falling?”

His reply: “Best to be pleasantly surprised than to be totally blindsided by a piece of sky that you didn’t expect to fall and hit you on your head.”

Right about then I’m ready to scream. I just don’t get it, guys. I don’t get pessimism or pessimistic people. Why get yourself worked up over something that hasn’t and probably won’t happen? I don’t mean bury your head in the sand, but why not think positive until you have something to worry about? Then if something comes up, deal with it.

I mean, not only is there the whole thought process of how you make bad shit happen by believing bad shit will happen, but I can’t stand the thought of walking around in a state of doom and gloom all the time.

Now, hubby claims I take my optimism a bit too far, that I walk around thinking everything is hunky dorie, but hey, positive thinking has done well for me. I’d have quit writing about the first five years if I wasn’t a optimist. Hubby also says that we make a great pair because we balance each other out. I know we make a great pair, but I’m still not sure he needs to be such a wet blanket.

Anyway, back to our dinner and the whole candy on the front porch issue. We go out for our dinner, it was wonderful just as I expected it to be. We pull up into the driveway, we slowly walk up to the front porch and then we stop. I cut him a look, he cuts one back.

Then I raise my chin high and say, “It doesn’t mean anything. Probably some dog took the bowl after the last of the trick-or-treaters took the candy.”

He starts howling with laughter, I storm into the house. Did I learn anything? Not a darn thing. I’ll always be the optimist.

Fine, I’ll admit he might have won this go-round, but I’ll win the next one. I’m positive of it. Just as positive as he is that he won’t win.

So what about you guys? Are you an optimist or a pessimist? Come on, share a little.

I’m in California this week on vacation. Hubby and I are doing the Sideways wine tour. I may or may not have internet connection and be able to respond to your comments, but I will get to them sooner or later. So make sure you leave a response.

And oh, next week starts my contests and giveaway for my new release, Divorced, Desperate and Deceived. So don’t miss out and make sure you come by and post a comment to win a book and other prizes next week/ Oh, I’ll also be guest blogging all over the Internet and I’ll post the links to those sites on my blogs.

Thanks guys and make sure you leave a comment.

Crime Scene Christie

Monday, November 09, 2009


The mask that the incredible Leslie Langtry made for me finally arrived. There was a few days of terror when we thought we'd have to assault the USPS for losing the mask - as apparently, it now takes 5 days for a 2 day priority package to arrive, but the mask finally made it into my mailbox. Here's a pic:

Of course, the first thing I did was try it on and terrorize the cat. It's simply no fun if you can't chase an animal. Besides, it will likely get cold enough to wear it one night during the dead of winter at about 3 am - during which time I will be in bed with my fuzzy sheets. It's Texas, ya know?

Saw Paranormal Activity this past weekend and like it okay. I wasn't terrified by any means, but then I'm an old horror junkie and don't really get scared. There was fairly good creep factor and all normal, non-horror-jaded viewers will probably find it quite creepy. Aside from the hyper-annoying boyfriend who thinks it's a good idea to call out demons, I had no problems with the rest of the plot, and especially liked the way it ended, as it was more realistic than most movies given the story line.

For those that needed Dramamine to watch The Blair Witch Project, this didn't have the stomach convulsing motion. The camera in this movie was mostly mounted on a tri-pod or sitting on a counter.

Altogether a decent weekend - how about you?

Deadly (Masked) DeLeon

Friday, November 06, 2009

Didja miss me?

I’m baaaaaaack! (Cue creepy exorcist voice)

How has everyone been? Didja miss me? Been behaving while I was off in new baby land? How was your Halloween? Ours was super fun this year! I ate my weight in candy, (Okay, I’m still doing that. Totally stocked up on 50% off candy after the big day. I officially have a chocolate addiction, and I’m pretty sure my family is staging an intervention behind my back.) and since all my regular costumes are still too small this year, my concession to dressing up was to wear a pair of devil horns. But they were sparkly! The Big Boy decided he wanted to go trick-or-treating as his favorite video game character, Super Mario. And, of course, since he actually has a brother this year, he insisted that Baby Boy dress up as Luigi. So, here are my super plumber brothers:

And, just for fun, a few more baby pics. Can you tell I’m playing proud mamma lately?

My little pumpkin

Smiles already!

Deep in thought

Baby Boy is one month old as of Monday, so I’m officially back from maternity leave this week. Which is kind of a joke really considering a) I work at home anyway and b) I was taking conference calls on new projects the day after baby was born. Oh, and did I mention I had a book release this month, too? (Yeah, super restful maternity leave. ;))

SCANDAL SHEET is now available in a bookstore near you! This is the first book in my brand spakin’ new Hollywood Headlines series, and I’ve got all sorts of Scandalous goodies available on my website. You can read an excerpt, listen to an audio excerpt of the first three chapters, enter my Scandalous Stories contest, visit the website for daily updated gossip, or just take the plunge and order yourself a copy. And, don’t forget, if anyone would like a signed copy, you can either send me an SASE and I’ll send you a signed bookplate to stick in the front of your book, or you can send me your book along with an SASE with sufficient return postage and I’ll sign your copy right on the title page. Just check my website for my mailing address.

And, to wet your Scandal appetite, here’s a video book trailer:

So, what has everyone else been up to this month?

~Trigger Happy Halliday

Thursday, November 05, 2009

I stink. I admit it. Yes, I showered this morning, but then I proceeded outdoors to burn the piles of leaves I'd raked up yesterday so I'm rather, uh, aromatic at the moment. And, as you can see from the photo of my home below, there is more raking, burning--and stinking to come. Fall. Gotta love it.

Anyway, as promised a few weeks back, I am posting pics of my house post Herbal Wash and Country Brown paint job. I still like the color (imagine that!) and am looking forward to having the chance to relax and enjoy the new paint job next summer. As you can also see, we're enjoying a beautiful day here in the heartland complete with brilliant sunshine and lovely blue skies. At this time of year you really appreciate each and every nice, sunny day!

I'm also posting a pic of my office below. I recently rearranged the furniture (for the twentieth time) and am hoping the new, functional arrangement translates into lots of pages.
Speaking of writing, I suppose I'd better open that WIP file and get to it. Hope you are having a great--and productive--week!

~Bullet Hole~

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

No Fatalities or Accidents in 7,120 Days!

Tuesday was our 20th wedding anniversary. That's right, me and Mr. Assassin have been happily married for two decades. You know, I always thought we'd spend this iconic day on a beach somewhere. Well, technically speaking, Tom is in the sand. That's calling the glass of vodka half full, right?

Here's how I celebrated:

Jack forgot his lunch. How did I know? Found the dogs playing tug-of-war with one of his peanut butter sandwhiches on the carpet. I had to run it to him, making me late for work.

Spent my lunch hour at the post office buying one stamp. You heard me. One. And arguing with the postmaster because the turquoise ski mask I sent Jana one week ago, 2-day express, hadn't shown up yet and they, for some reason, couldn't track it. Managed to race to Wendy's and scarf down a double stack with cheese, tomato and mayo before reaching my desk.

Struggled all afternoon with a graphic design problem before I realized that it would work with only two mouse clicks.

Margaret called to say she was sent home with fever and a bad headache. The school nurse coyly tossed around the words "swine" and "flu."

Got this text from Bernie, "Leslie, please bring knives." If I had a nickel for everytime someone said that to me...

The cub scout meeting was one hour of anarchy and chaos when one of the boys said the word "eyenipple" while reading a report on the American flag. Eyenipple?

Jack won the popcorn sale for the den by $3. This means in two weeks, he gets to hit me in the face with a pie. He spent the whole walk home telling me how excited he was to finally get his revenge. Revenge?

Watched the pilot episode of "V." Told my kids how much I loved this show back in the eighties. Jack and Margaret tell me that twenty-eight years is like eternity and they can't believe I'm still alive.

And somehow, I am just not convinced that this all "fun-size" Snickers diet is working.

Oh well. Today is another day...right?

The Assassin

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

I Tried to Give My Dad Away A Wal-Mart But they Didn't Want Him

I Tried to Give my Dad Away at Wal-Mart

But They Wouldn’t Take Him.

Last week I had the great pleasure of my dad and his better half’s (his girlfriend) company. Faye is a sweet, spunky individual. Not that her being spunky is surprising. You see, it takes a spunky individual to put up with my old man. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying anything about him that he hasn’t said about himself.

You see, my dad is a smartass. He admitted it while he was here, too. The conversation came about when we were talking about my book reviews and I told him that several people had referred to my writing style as “smartass.”

His retort was, “See, that’s why I should be getting a cut of your royalties. You inherited all your smartass abilities from me.”

My reply to that was, “Yeah, that what’s my mama always said, too, only she didn’t seem to mean it as a good thing.”

His reply was, “Don’t be a smartass!”

That’s when I reminded him of the years he told me that being a smartass wasn’t going to get me anywhere. Obviously, he didn’t deserve a cut of my profits because he tried to change me.

His reply was, “I just told you that to make you mad so you’d work harder at being a smartass. And it worked, didn’t it?”

Hubby passes by and says, “Yup, it did!”

“Watch it,” daddy says to him.

You see, I can say anything about my dad. My dad can say anything about me, but no one better say anything bad about us to each other. It’s a father-daughter thing.

Hubby replies, “I’m talking about her writing. She put a dead guy in a Porta Potty in the book.”

My dad’s reply came quick. “Well, if she put him there, I’m certain he deserved to be there!”

Then Faye, who reads all my books, looks at me and says, “You know, you do get your smart mouth from your dad.”

Fine, I’ll admit it, I might, just might be a chip off the old block. Not that he’s that tough of a block. Oh, he tries to act tough. He claims he hates cats, but three of my four cats decided his lap was a good place to sleep. He claims he hates dogs that slobber and can’t keep their tongues in their mouths, and my daughter’s English Mastiff just couldn’t buy that he didn’t love her. And you know what they say about animals knowing what a person is really made of.

Ahh, but there’s never a dull moment when my dad and I are together. When a waitress asked how he wanted his burger cooked, my dad’s reply was, “On the grill.”

Once at a restaurant when his pork chop was tough, he called the waitress over and with a straight face asked her if they had a hacksaw in the house because nothing less would do to cut the piece of leather she’d just served him.

He loves to pull the wool over your eyes or to just downright embarrass you. And he tried to do that to me on this visit. We were at Wal-Mart and I’m paying for my purchases. He comes up and tells the cashier, “She’s my daughter and she mistreats me. Can you call someone to do something about that?”

Now, this woman doesn’t know my dad and I could see in her expression that she was concerned. I look back at my dad and say, “Shut up, ol’ man!”

Yeah, maybe that wasn’t the right thing to say, but I knew if I went right into trying to convince her that I wasn’t abusive, Dad would have too much fun. And hey, we all know a hit dog hollers the loudest.

Dad looks back at the cashier, picks up his cane and says, “She beats me with my own cane.”

Faye, my dad’s girlfriend says, “She does not.”

I swear that cashier’s eyes got round as quarters and she looks at me and tries to sum me up. Was I the type to beat my dad with his own cane?

I shake my head and look back at the woman. “He deserves a good beating. But if you think you can put up with him, I’ll let you take him home with you.”

Faye looks at me, and I’m not sure she appreciates me trying to give her boyfriend away, but hey, she’s not the one he’s trying to get arrested right now.

The cashier looks back at my dad and she sees it, that devilish sparkle in his blue eyes. She shakes her head. “Nope, I don’t want him.”

I laugh and feel victorious. But as I walk away, she says, “But you know, he doesn’t seem all that bad, maybe you should try to be a little nicer to him.”

Dad snickers. I look back at the woman and say, “That’s only going to encourage him. And now if he starts acting up, I’m bringing him back to you.”

She looks at my dad and says, “I’m locking the doors when you leave.”

And I think she meant it, too.

Anyway, we had a great visit. We did a lot of laughing.

Yup, dad is full of piss and vinegar as we used to say back in Alabama, and I’ll admit that perhaps, I inherited a bit of his attitude. Oh, and dad’s right. The guy in the Porta-Potty in Divorced, Desperate and Deceived deserved what he got.

So, what about you guys? Any smartass stories to share? Any father-daughter stories to share? Come on, don’t be shy.

Monday, November 02, 2009

The Halloween Aftermath

I don't have kids so I don't have to do a big Halloween thing. And since I spent the whole weekend working while watching horror movie classics on television, I don't have a mess to clean up, or a bowl of candy I need to get rid of. At my job, they have a costume contest, so that's always fun to see, but I'm going to share with you a couple of pics I got in one of those joke emails making its way around. Sorry, if you've already seen it, but some of these pics are priceless.

And then we wonder why dogs bite.........?
Deadly DeLeon