Archive for 06/13/2007

A story with a moral. (how unusual is that?)

Posted in This and that on 06/13/2007 by Susan Shay

A funny from one of my sisters:

Once upon a time, and far far away lived a Beautiful Queen with
       voluptuous breasts. Nick, the Dragon Slayer, was obsessed with the
       breasts, but knew that the penalty for ever acting on his desire
       would be death.
       One day, Nick revealed his secret desire to Horatio, who was the
       chief Physician. Horatio, the physician, said that he could arrange
       Nick, the Dragon Slayer, to satisfy his desire, but it would cost
       1000 gold coins. Without pause, Nick, the Dragon Slayer, readily
       agreed to
       the terms.

       The next day, Horatio, the Physician, made a batch of itching powder
       and poured a little bit into the Queen’s brassiere while she bathed.
       after she dressed, the itching commenced and grew intense. Upon
       summoned to the Royal Chambers to address this incident, Horatio,
       the Physician,
       informed the King and Queen that only a special saliva, if applied
       four hours, would cure this type of itch, and that tests had shown
       that only
       the saliva of Nick, the Dragon Slayer, would work as the antidote to
       the itch.

       The King quickly summoned Nick, the Dragon Slayer. Horatio, the
       Physician, then slipped Nick, the Dragon Slayer, the antidote for
       the itching
       powder, which he quickly put into his mouth. For the next four
       hours, Nick
       worked passionately on the Queen’s voluptuous and magnificent
       breasts. The
       Queen’s itching was eventually relieved, and Nick, the Dragon
       Slayer, left not
       only satisfied, but touted as a hero.

       Upon returning to his chamber, Nick, the Dragon Slayer, found
       the Physician, demanding his payment of 1,000 gold coins. With his
       obsession now satisfied, Nick, the Dragon Slayer realized that
       Horatio, the
       Physician, could never report this matter to the King, and so with a
       laugh, he
       told Horatio to take a hike.

       The next day, Horatio, the Physician, slipped a massive dose of the
       same itching powder into the King’s underwear. The King immediately
       Nick, the Dragon Slayer.

       The moral of the story – – – – – – – – – – – – Pay your bills

I’ll bet he found the 1000 gold coins. Don’t you?

Posted in writing on 06/13/2007 by Susan Shay

Jaci Burton

Last weekend was pumped. One of those I won’t forget for a long time. . . I hope.

Although it was a packed weekend, this is about Saturday, the monthly Romance Writers Ink meeting, and Jaci Burton, our speaker. This woman is rocketing in the world of romance writing, and since she’s a member of our chapter, I wanted to know how she’s done it. As the program procurer for RWI, I asked her to talk about career planning.

Her initial response, “There’s supposed to be a plan?”


But she did a wonderful job. Fantastic! She talked about making the decision to write and having a vision. Something more than, “Become the next New York Times best selling author.”

She spoke about goal setting, and gave us an example of hers.

Now I thought I was a goal setter. I started a loop for our chapter where we set our goals each week, then tell how we did. The thing that was different about Jaci’s is that she actually uses her goals. While she’s working. It’s more than something to check against at the end to see if you did what you predicted. It’s a map that tells her what to do each day.


She gave us short term goal examples for unpubbed and short term goal examples for published. And since To School a Cowboy is on the market, that makes me published. Gulp again.

Her next example was long term goals. Things like, submit manuscript to 3 top tier RWA contests. Begin reviewing agent and publisher market for appropriate fit for manuscript. Buy a domain and set up website. (And that was for an unpublished writer! Revolutionary–at least in my world.)

Her talk turned to scheduling. Know how much time you have for writing. Make schedule realistic. (We’re fiction writers, and we’re supposed to be realistic?)

Set a timeline for each task: Plotting, synopsis, writing, editing, submitting, marketing, promotion, etc.  She was starting to make all this sound like a business.

Whap! (The sound of the lightbulb making a connection with my head.)

She asked what our schedules look like.

Susan’s schedule: Write.

“Check your progress monthly, quarterly and annually.” There was that secret ingredient.  “Celebrate your milestones and successes!” Really? “Surround yourself with supportive people.” Hm.

Jaci even schedules when she begins promotions for her next book coming out. BEFORE it comes out.

I can see I have way more to learn about this business. The good thing is, I’m willing to learn. If I weren’t, I’d have the shortest career on record.

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