Showing posts from March, 2015

Following a Well-Worn Formula For Success: Manufacturing Snake Oil With A Poison Pen

I've been watching the uproar that has ensued following Clay Travis's outrageous post on his sports website/blog Outkick The Coverage in which he claims that the Kentucky-West Virginia Sweet Sixteen basketball game tonight will pit the "two dumbest fan bases" in college sports. I'd post the link, but he's already made enough money off of clicks on that stupid 'article'. Let's not help him increase his bank account if we can help it. Do me a favor and don't run off to his site to look. Let me give you a sample:

It's an upside down world when it comes to Kentucky and West Virginia -- fans in single wides cheering for coaches in mansions, basketball fans without teeth cheering for basketball players with teeth, fans who have no hope of being admitted to academic powerhouse universities like Kentucky and West Virginia living or dying to the beat of a basketball's dribble. Like canaries in a coal mine without oxygen, these two states are whe…

The Culture of Pain

Chronic pain is an issue I feel pretty passionate about. Aside from a debilitating back injury I received in a 2002 car accident, my body is now wracked with arthritis in all my major joints. I've already had one total knee replacement and am due for another. So yes--I deal with pain every single day, and I do my best with the cards I've been dealt. No matter how bad my pain gets (and some days it's very bad), I try to keep in mind that there are a whole heck of a lot of other people out there whose daily battle with pain is far, far worse than mine. So no--I'm not lying on my couch, eating bonbons and watching soap operas and whining about poor little me with enough metal in my back and knee that I have to carry a special ID listing all my titanium if I have to go through any kind of security checkpoint. I have fairly ambitious physical plans for this spring and summer that will hopefully result in me being able to walk at least 2-3 blocks, which is something I've…

Getting The Writer's Mind Back on Track

Coming off of what I sarcastically have dubbed my "brush with death"--yes, I'm doing just fine save for the fact I got all of the pain resulting from any invasive procedure but none of the benefits considering my nerves were never ablated--I'm back in the writing studio today watching a new litter of kittens from our rescue mission and staring at a blank page. 

Writers share that experience daily. At some point, all of us sit at our computers and stare at a blank page.  It may be a new story, or a new chapter, or even just a break in the storyline rolling through our minds. And while some authors may not experience a hitch at the sight of a blank page, I'm willing to bet that most of us do. 
And why not?  We all have and friends...near death experiences due to anesthesia--why is it so strange that occasionally the sight of a blank page can throw us off-track?
(Darn page is still blank) 
With all of the distractions in everyday life and the …

Something Funny Happened On The Way To...

Something odd happened to me on Wednesday, something that shook both me and my husband to the core. Something that's left me wondering about a lot of things.
Something that's hard to face. 
I was having a regular (for me) back procedure as an outpatient on Wednesday. No big deal, but  I would need to be sedated for the procedure. I remember being in the operating room, watching as the anesthesiologist slowly pushed on the big syringe of medication that would keep me sedated during a lumbar radiofrequency ablation. ( A LRA is when the nerves are destroyed around the injured section of someone's spine. For many people, destroying those nerves also kills off the pain. Since nerves regenerate, though, patients usually have to have two procedures a year for maximum pain relief. For me, this is the second round attempt of ablations, and the first didn't really help all that much. But I digress--) I woke up in the recovery room, confused and kind of panicked, only to have a n…

The Avengers Age of Ultron aka Celina Gets Her Geek On

Guilty as charged. I am a MOVIE geek, and particularly a Marvel Universe geek since the first Iron Man movie came out. I only watched it because I'm a fan of Robert Downey Junior and have been since he played an incredible, method-laced, Oscar-nominated Chaplin at an incredibly young age. Iron Man was his coming out party in his only-still-too-good-looking middle age (which I can say because he's older than me) and I loved every minute of the movie when Gwyneth Paltrow wasn't onscreen.
So the past few months, I've been in Avengers mode. I was stoked that James Spader would voice/act Ultron, and the Scarlet Witch was a character I loved when I was a wee little comic book geek girl back in the day. Every single teaser trailer that Marvel has released has done exactly that--teased. But today I discovered that some smart ultra geek on YouTube had dissected the trailers and put them back together--in chronological order. 
The result is a five-minute-long glimpse into what&#…

My Latest Guilty Pleasure

Nota bene: If you're not fond of college sports, this post might not be your cup of tea. However, if you're into smartassery, this is the post for you--
So every afternoon at three, my television automatically tunes into the Paul Finebaum show on the SEC Network. For people who didn't grown up in the America Southeast, fair warning: basketball is second only to football, and our college teams are MUCH more important than the professional ones. Living in Ohio was familiar to me from the beginning, because Ohio might as well be an SEC school judging from its *cough* occasional successes and rabid fan base.  But even Buckeye fanatics have no clue what a Saturday down south is like every fall. 
Football is king. Period. Until March, when basketball takes over for about four weeks. Then it's back to football. 
At  any rate, last year when I was recovering from wait, knee surgery, the SEC Network was about to debut, and ESPN put Paul Finebaum's show on one of …

Welcome Back! And Goodbye...

That welcome is not just for you. It's also, in many ways, for me. After over ten years, I am finally back on the writer's side of the publishing desk. ONLY the writer's side. 
And it feels good. 
Oddly, although the closing of Musa Publishing was heartbreaking for me on a personal level, I still feel a level of success. Heck, we NEVER missed paying our authors and staff. We NEVER had to make up bogus cover stories for why royalties would be late. And we NEVER shut our authors out of the process. Thanks to the Delphi system created by Musa (specifically Kelly and Micheal), our authors knew their sales numbers within minutes of our knowing them. We published good  books by great writers at all stages of their careers, from novice first-timers to NYT bestsellers and major award-winners. Unfortunately for Musa--and for all of e-publishing--the atmosphere in digital publishing has changed. The market is glutted with self-published books, cluttering up search engines and third …