Archive for July, 2008

WWW–Wicked Witch of the West–Me!

Posted in writing with tags , , on 07/29/2008 by Susan Shay
Here’s the story.

MS downloaded different rings so he could tell without looking who was calling his cell phone. He has Ducktails for his older brother (they share a love of Donald Duck) and Doogie Houser’s theme for his younger brother. (BB looks kind of like Doogie and wants to be Dr. Shay–a dentist, not a doctor–so I guess that fits if you stretch it a little.) He’s got Cartman from Southpark singing “I hate you guys” for someone else, but I’m not sure which one that is.

Then it was my turn.

He found the evil witch’s theme from Wizard of Oz. “What do you think?” he asked his office mate when he got to work. “Doesn’t that sound like Mom?”

“Oh, no. Don’t use that one,” the extremely soft hearted woman answered. “You might hurt her feelings.”

Next he asked his big wheeling aunt. “Don’t you like this for Mom?”

“I don’t think so,” BWA answered, having known me longer. “If you use it, she might hurt you.”

Then I happened into his office. “I downloaded a song for your ring tone. What do you think?”

He pushed a button on his phone. The music started playing. Duh-da-duh-da-duh duuuuuh.  Duh-da-duh-da-duh duuuuuh.

I was so thrilled, I laughed. “That’s perfect!” I briefly wished I wore green makeup just for the effect. “And when you answer I’ll go, “Bwa-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha!!!”

Even if I say so myself, I do a pretty mean immitation of Margaret Hamilton laughing like a witch.

 I borrowed the original from Wikipedia

Dancing on the Moon

Posted in writing with tags , , , , , on 07/28/2008 by Susan Shay

I received an email from my editor, the brilliant Sarah Hansen, this weekend. And I’m telling you, I’m not just walking on air or tap dancing on the ceiling. I’m boogieing on the moon!

I don’t know how an editor can send an email like this and not expect it to be shared, so . . . I’m going for it! 😉

Here it is:

Hey Susan!

I just started Gypsy a bit ago, and let me tell you–I am doing the happy dance. I LOVE this story so far. It is one of those that just sucked me right in. I really like Blind Sight but holy cow! Its just twisty and sparkly and heat and intrigue all wrapped in one package.

Let me tell you, I’m so thrilled I could kiss myself. 8)

Aren’t those the coolest words ever? TWISTY. SPARKLY. HEAT. INTRIGUE. 

I tell you, I was so thrilled when I read it, I could hardly stay in my chair. I wanted to dance and sing, throw my arms around someone and share my sweet news. But I was home alone at the time and Molly the dog doesn’t quite understand when I start throwing her up in the air and screaming. (Not that I didn’t do it. She just didn’t understand.)

So what to do? First I shared it with my long term critique partners–Marilyn Pappano and Margaret E. Reid–the two women who’ve seen me through everything. I knew they’d understand and celebrate with me. 

They did!

Then I sent it to my Romance Writers of America chapter–Romance Writers Ink. And, just as I hoped, they were as thrilled as me.

Now what?

If I were a skywriter, I’d blaze those four words into the heavens.

If I liked tattooes, get those four words inked into my skin. (ouch)

If I had quadruplets, that’s what I’d name them. (Or maybe not.)

If I found a patch of wet cement, I’d draw them in the goo and leave my pen print.

But since those things aren’t likely to happen, I’ll try to write more stories that are twisty and sparkly and heat and intrigue . . . and then see if I can get my editor to love them, too.

Now if I can just get a few (okay–more than a few) very verbal readers to feel the same way.  

I’ll let you know if Sarah likes the rest of the book.

The Day After

Posted in writing on 07/23/2008 by Susan Shay

The day after the Fourth of July, I was a little irritated as I carried out the trash left in the kitchen. After all, I’d fried chicken, made potato salad AND Grandmommie Corn–fresh corn cut off the cob and cooked a really special way–and all I’d asked the kids to do was clean up. We’d even used paper plates!

They did a good job of making the kitchen look wonderful, but naturally, the trash can was full. And heavy. But I didn’t complain too loudly. I just tied up the bag and carried it out the front door to the garbage can on the other side of the garage.

On the way back inside, I saw I had an uninvited but very welcome guest right by my front porch. So naturally I ran in the house and grabbed the camera so I could share the visit with you.

I hope you enjoy it!

[rockyou id=118355113&w=426&h=319]


Posted in writing on 07/19/2008 by Susan Shay

In case I haven’t mentioned it before, I HATE SUMMER. Honestly, it’s my least favorite season. Why? you ask?

You wouldn’t have to ask if you lived in Oklahoma. Wanna know? I’ll be happy to tell you.

  • It’s hot AND sticky. (uber humid.)
  • People we Okies thought we’d rid ourselves of years ago sneak back between school terms. And they move to college towns, then gripe because everyone in town is “stupid enough” to support their school.
  • There is no school. Little kids are everywhere, and almost all of them are whining that they have nothing to do.
  • Mothers are too hot and sticky to assign their kids work.
  • Even though it’s hot and muggy (uber humid) I still have to cook.
  • The grass either grows and grows AND GROWS and has to be cut or it looks like a yard full of hayride rejections. And I don’t have a kid around to mow it for me.
  • Everyone goes on really cool vacations except me. Hawaii, Corpus Christi, Colorado . . . .
  • My brain goes on a vacation and it’s hard to get much work done except mowing and yard work.
  • Did I mention it’s hot?

To be honest, this hasn’t been a bad summer. We’ve had a lot of rain, which is unusual for our part of the world, and the temperature still hasn’t reached 100 degrees–knock wood.


If I had my way, the temp would stay at about 78 degrees all year round. The grass wouldn’t grow higher than we like to walk through and not one weed would find its way into my garden.

I know–not gonna happen.

Oh, well. School starts in less than a month and all the rugrats will be back where they belong. <eg> I didn’t feel that way when mine were small. I hated it when it was time for them to go back to class, but now they forget to come home except when I’m frying chicken or they’re getting a present. 😉

So tomorrow I’m going to be hot and sticky (not to mention stinky) mowing the lawn, which in a perfect world, my kids would be doing. *sigh* Wish me luck.

Long Time!

Posted in writing on 07/11/2008 by Susan Shay

Wow. It’s been a week since I’ve blogged. And what a busy week.

My Kansas BIL went to the hospital and had something done to his heart–but I wasn’t there.

My friend read all of Make Me Howl (up to almost the last chapter)–but I wasn’t there, either.

I went to see Phantom of the Opera last night–but all I did was sit in the chair and marvel.

Hm. Sounds as if I’ve spent my time observing but haven’t done much at all. I’m sure I’ve done something. I’m just not quite sure what it was. 

Tomorrow is the RWI meeting. Our speaker is Sharon Ervin. She’s a member and will be talking about “Riding a Rejection to a Sale.” I can’t wait to hear her. This woman is great! She makes her manuscripts work. If she sends one out and gets it back with a rejection, she shoots it right off again.

Did I mention she’s a brave soul? I can only stand a finite number of rejections on any one manuscript before I find a deep hole to hide it in, but Sharon is a better man that I am. (Okay, a better woman) When she gets one back, she finds another publisher to send it to.

For a long time, I was a publisher snob. I wasn’t going to send my wonderful work to a small press or *shudder* an E-publisher. After a while I realized I had several pretty darn good manuscripts that hadn’t sold to the Big Boys in New York.

Someday–I dreamed. Someday I’ll find a BB-NY editor who loves my voice, and I’ll have a pile of books ready to spring on the world.

But after a while I realized that I had a lot of merchandise in my proverbial storehouse. It was time to dust it off and send it out there where someone could buy it. (Besides, BF Meg had just sold her manuscript to an E-publisher and I didn’t want to be Left Behind.)

I looked at other writers like Michele Bardsley, JaciBurton and Jackie Kramer who’d started out with E-pubs, then moved on to the BB-NY. WHY WAS I BEING SO PICKY?

Why not start building my audience now, then move on to BB-NY later?

So I did. I sent my manuscript (TO SCHOOL A COWBOY) to The Wild Rose Press. They jumped on it–with a few revisions. Then I sent my next two, BLIND SIGHT and GYPSY (title soon to be changed) and they liked those, too.

I’m telling you, the women at TWRP have wonderful taste. 😉

Do I still want to sell to BB-NY? You betcha! Will I be disappointed if I never do? Probably.

Am I unhappy with the publisher I have now? NO WAY. I’m thrilled to death to have someone like TWRP.

They’re great.

BTW: Romance Writers Ink meets tomorrow, July 12th, in room 221 OSU-Tulsa at 1:00. Come visit if you get the chance.

I’ll be behind the sign in sheet.

Brenna Left the Building

Posted in writing on 07/04/2008 by Susan Shay

St. Jude’s that is. 🙂 The kiddo was doing so well, the docs decided to send her home. Imagine, after having your brain opened twice, she’s already feeling and doing well enough to go home.

When her parents asked her what she wanted to do, she said, “Go to Grandma’s house!” She wanted to be there to celebrate the 4th.

You can read more about it on the Logsdons’ family blog.

When I was a kid my cousin, who was a couple of years younger than me, was bitten by a dog. It got her on the face, narrowly missing one of those big arteries in her neck. She had to be hospitalized and treated for rabies while they tested the dog to see if he was sick or if my cousin had just been driving him nuts.

Turned out the dog wasn’t rabid, but by the time they knew for sure my cousin had a bunch of those belly shots and missed the Fourth of July.

But her mom wasn’t about to let her miss the fun. My aunt had bought a bunch of fireworks and saved them, then when my cousin got home, the kids all went to her other grandparents’ house to shoot them.

It was great having two  celebrations in one year. The fountains and rockets and Roman candles were even better the second time around. Then something awful happened. We caught the field across from us on fire.

My three guy cousins and my aunt all went to put out the fire, but us girls had to stay at the house. 😦  It didn’t take long to douse it, but it spoiled the rest of the night for us. No more fireworks.

We had lots of red pop, though, and probably some homemade ice cream–always a Fourth favorite when I was a kid. And I’ll bet we didn’t sleep for a week afterward.

Now I fry chicken every year on the Fourth. It’s the only time of the year I make it, so I try to cook plenty. My boys and my DIL all come home (who’d want to miss the annual chicken fry?) and we eat until we can’t hold anymore.

Sad thing is, nobody buys fireworks at my house. If I want to enjoy them, I have to sneak a peek at someone else’s.

How do you celebrate the holiday? Go to the lake? Grill steaks and watch a city’s fireworks show? Set somebody’s field on fire?

As always, I’m curious. 🙂

Posted in This and that on 07/04/2008 by Susan Shay
A recipe she used a lot!

A recipe she used a lot!

As you can see, this is a recipe that had lots of use. Those are spills from cooking with it lying on the counter top next to the stove.

If you can read it, try this one. I guarantee you’ll gain at least 3 pounds. 😉 I know I always do.

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