Stagnation Is the Mother of Reinvention

So how do you like the New! Improved! website? Personally, I think it’s terrific. I liked the old one, too, but it had been around for a good ten years and frankly, mosquitos were beginning to lay eggs in it, it had been stagnant that long. So my amazing webmistress grabbed me by the throat and said, “I’m tired of getting e-mails from people bitching about how this place never changes, so we’re changing it.” And she was right. So now we have some great stuff–

What? You don’t want to hear about the freaking website, you want to know when I’m going to get off my butt and write something new?

Yeah, funny story there. Mosquitos were laying eggs in me, too, creatively, but did I notice? No. I just kept slogging away on my next opus, YOU AGAIN. Then menopause hit. Try to write romantic comedy while your brain turns to syrup and you sink into the abyss. I’d get editing notes like “Needs more charm and joy.” Charm and joy. Right. They might as well have asked me to be younger and shorter. Meanwhile, I’m writing myself into a corner and the corner has a trap door and I fall into a very dark place. In the midst of which, I go to Maui with my daughter because she has always wanted to see Hawaii and I’ve been invited to the Maui Writer’s Retreat. So I take her along and we get off the plane and she looks out over the lanai and says, “Maui. Huh.” And I know I’m going to have to kill her because she’s going to be un-thrilled the entire two weeks. Argh.

Then we get on the airport shuttle with this grim guy named Bob Mayer who looks like he could take out the entire bus if I annoy him, which of course I do since Mollie’s annoying me. (Who says, “Maui. Huh”? I ask you.) Bob ends up teaching in the room next door to me, and one night in the faculty lounge he says, “We should collaborate on a book,” and he’s written thirty of them so I know he can finish one, and I really want to finish one, plus I like the realism and edginess and pacing in his books so I say, “Yes,” and DON’T LOOK DOWN will be out in the Spring of 2006. I wrote the scenes in the heroine’s POV and Bob wrote the scenes in the hero’s POV and everybody who’s read it thinks the hero is great. Go, Bob. We’ll put a DLD page on the website later, but it’s early yet. Check back around Valentine’s Day. But the book is wonderful. Well, Bob’s half is wonderful. My half needs more charm and joy, but you know how that is.

Before that, in September, BenBella Books will publish FLIRTING WITH PRIDE AND PREJUDICE, and I wrote the introductory essay and then the little intros for the individual essays. And in November, BenBella will publish another anthology, this one on the television show Charmed called TOTALLY CHARMED, and I am once again introing. Plus in January, Mira Books is reissuing ANYONE BUT YOU, my last category romance. I went through and cleaned up some typos and tightened the narrative, but it’s pretty much the same as the original book because I liked the original book.

And then in the spring, DON’T LOOK DOWN.

I’ll be going back to YOU AGAIN later with a light and a ladder to try to get out of that dark hole, but first I have to write CHARLOTTE’S BOOK (clearly a working title) and then start the next Crusie/Mayer, AGNES AND THE HITMAN, or as Bob likes to call it, SHANE AND THE FOOD WRITER. If you want to know more, go to the Work In Progress Page, it’s all there.

But to answer your orginal question, as God is my witness, I’m working. Really.

2 thoughts on “Stagnation Is the Mother of Reinvention

  1. Yaayyyyy! I cannot wait for the new book. I love the new website too.
    Lisa U.
    Louisville, Ky

  2. Love the new website look. Your Webmistress is a GODDESS. Though considering her gene pool, not at all surprising.

    Your “what’s new” section revealed you’ll be speaking at another Smithsonian event in Feb. 06. So cool. I remember when you came several years ago and spoke – gasp – first thing on a Saturday morning. That was just cruel of them, but you more than met the challenge. You were fantastic, witty, an absolute joy to listen to and I still have the notebook’s worth of your pearls of wisdom. If only you’d been my English teacher in h.s. But you are MUCH TOO YOUNG.

    Thank you so much for blogging. It’s a medium to which you are wonderfully suited. And we, your fans, get immediate gratification. Got to love that! Your talents, wit, charm and joy [yes, you do so have else could you come up with and do justice to all those great shoes in Bet Me] were meant for blogging.

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