Quote I Love: The more you write, the better you get.

Michelle Obama “on what she and Obama tell their daughters to help them achieve their goals.” (Yahoo News)

“Read, write, read, read. If the president were here–one of his greatest strengths is reading. That’s one of the reasons why he’s a good communicator, why he’s such a good writer. He’s a voracious reader. So we’re trying to get our girls, no matter what, to just be–to love reading and to challenge themselves with what they read, and not just read the gossip books but to push themselves beyond and do things that maybe they wouldn’t do.

“So I would encourage you all to read, read, read. Just keep reading. And writing is another skill. It’s practice. It’s practice. The more you write, the better you get. Drafts–our kids are learning the first draft means nothing. You’re going to do seven, 10 drafts. That’s writing, it’s not failure, it’s not the teacher not liking you because it’s all marked up in red. When you get to be a good writer, you mark your own stuff in red, and you rewrite, and you rewrite, and you rewrite. That’s what writing is.”

Michelle Obama
Q&A at the Elizabeth Garrett Anderson School

Yes! As is often stated…writing is rewriting.

“The first draft means nothing.” I’m not sure it means nothing, but in my case it’s only a start, and a rough start at that. It’s the bare bones of what a story will become. So much happens from that first draft to the last. That’s when the characters come to life, when the plot issues are ironed out, when the emotions become more relevant and intense, and when the descriptions are made more meaningful.

I just finished making a character motivation change to TAKE ME HOME that required I rewrite several scenes and revise some internal monologue throughout the story. I cannot tell you how happy I am with the outcome. I love these characters and their journey together even more.

Revising is where such magically things happen to the manuscript that even the writer is surprised.

For the Love of: the M/M Romance Group at Goodreads

If you haven’t checked out Goodreads or the M/M Romance group you should take a look.

What is Goodreads?
“Goodreads is the largest social network for readers in the world. We have more than 4,600,000 members who have added more than 130,000,000 books to their shelves. A place for casual readers and bona-fide bookworms alike, Goodreads members recommend books, compare what they are reading, keep track of what they’ve read and would like to read, form book clubs and much more.” (source: Goodreads)

What is the M/M Romance Group?
“The #1 resource on the internet for M/M Romance fans, this group has something for everyone.

  • Book and Series Discussions
  • Daily Updates on New Releases and Author News
  • Book of the Month Group Reads
  • Reading Challenges
  • Author Info & Writing Discussions
  • Erotic Photos
  • Games, Contests & Quizes”

(source: M/M Romance group)

The group currently has 2700 members, and they estimate they’ll have 3000 by mid June. They are also the top 20th most popular group on Goodreads which totally kicks ass when you think about the fact that this group is based on such a small niche market. Definitely a sign that readership and love of the genre is growing.

As a reader of m/m romances, I only wish I had more time to hang out there. If you’re a reader of the genre, you should definitely think about checking out the M/M Romance group.

For the Love of: Audio Books & Editors

(c) istockphoto.com, Tony Tremblay 2005

Sharing a couple links today…

  • Earlier this week I blogged about my love of audio books at my RWA chapter blog. The post is titled What Else Can I Clean? I’d love for you to stop by and let me know what you think of audio books. Do you listen to them? If so, do you find you lose yourself in the story as much as if you were reading the book yourself? Or perhaps more?
  • Author SJ Frost has written a fabulous article about the unsung heroes of the publishing world: the editors. Definitely all true, so I’ll take this opportunity to say another huge thank you to my editor at Loose Id, Antonia, and the line editors and proof readers who have helped with my stories. Your insights, time, and effort are greatly appreciated!

Just joined the new ARe Cafe

Have you seen the new ARe cafe at All Romance eBooks? I’m still learning my way around, but it looks pretty neat. You can post a status, connect with friends, join groups with other readers, check out recommended reads, see what’s being reviewed, and integrate it with your Twitter and Facebook. There’s even an m/m group called Mmmm… M/M Romance. Here’s the groups description:

“Here is the place for lovers of m/m romance, from sweet to spicy, to discuss what’s hot now. Talk about your favorite manlove authors and recommend titles for readers new to M/M goodness!”

If anyone is a member of the cafe, I’d love to connect with you. Here’s a link to my profile. Feel free to send me a friend request.

It looks like a neat place for readers to hang out. Hope to see you there!


Now, He’s Sexy…What Makes a Hero Stand Out?

(c) istockphoto, RobertDodge, 2007

I’m talking at Book Lovers Inc. today about men & what makes a hero stand out. I’m also giving away a copy of Breathe. Stop by if you have time. I would love to hear what you like in a hero.

Giveaway ends February 19th.

Have a great week!