Sunday, November 13, 2011

Darcy and Fitzwilliam and the Turkey Blog Tour!!!

I love that cover.  It was created by a girl named Karen Horton at Soucebooks and in my opinion it is about the most beautiful cover out there.  But I digress...

So much has happened, and not happened, in the months since Darcy and Fitzwilliam was publishced, February 1, 2011.  We are still not in Walgreen's or K-Mart book stalls; those seem to be reserved for Nora Roberts and Debbie Macomber and that Sparks guy.  I look every day and my heart skips a beat when I see green - but it's never Darcy and Fitzwilliam.  I tried in the beginning to push the stores into selling my book but evidently they have no say so about what books are selected.  There is a company the chains hire to go to the publishers and select the ones they want (that translates into those that sell).  Rats

In the meantime I am stuffing bookmarks into random books at Walmart (oh yes, I have no pride left whatsoever), I have a display of my one newspaper interview atop a garbage can at the Subway sandwich shop where Richie and I eat everyday that offers my book marks too, then there are blog hops, blog groups, twitter groups, etc.  It has seemed endless, exhausting, and left me no time to write so evenually I had to back away from some of it and start to write again.

And it worked!  Now I have  another book started - Darcy and Fitzwilliam - Fatherhood! It is still in very rough draft form and I have little to no confidence in myself.  I dread the thought of the second book not being accepted by my Publisher (they've been turning down P&P sequels lately) and then, if by some miracle it does get published, I would have to face another horror of a month as I did in February 2011,waiting and watching for reviews, tearing my hair out because of the bad ones and jumping for joy at the good ones. 

It is a roller coaster ride I swore I'd never take again, but if I am very very lucky, maybe I will.
Here is an excerpt from the original, my most favorite book in the whole world, which should be made into a movie with Brendan Gleeson or Martin Clunes as Fitzswilliam and Colin Firth and/or Matthew Macfadyen as the beaver.

Darcy and Fitzwilliam

Another shout out came from a group of young Corinthians racing by in their phaetons. “Whoo! Hoo! Well done, Colonel!” “Capital fellow!” “Come have a drink with us!!” He smiled vaguely then winced as one phaeton slid sideways on the ice, almost toppling itself and nearly injuring the precious horses. Goddamn stupid idiots, he thought as he smiled and waved. They righted themselves soon enough and laughed uproariously at their own daring.

The wind was kicking up more now, and it was biting cold. Bloody hell, did Darcy move his goddamn house? I don’t remember it being this far of a walk. He should not have told his batman to go home and get warm so that he could continue alone and think. Thinking is highly overrated he decided as he stomped his feet while awaiting traffic. I’m going to freeze my fucking balls off if I don’t… “Ladies…” Smiling warmly, he bowed and tipped his hat, flirting outrageously with the three giggling lovelies who slowed their pace as they walked by, whispering and staring back at him as they did. His spirits rose considerably when they spun around to follow him.

There definitely was an upside to fame.

The sad truth was that the one thing he really would have wanted to do with his life was the one thing that he could not. In his heart of hearts, Fitzwilliam wanted nothing more than to be a simple country squire. He wanted to work the soil, chop trees, and visit his tenants. He wanted to read and actually understand cattle and crop reports, or bicker over terms with tradesmen. He wanted a quiet, neat little home and the chance to doze off in a chair in his own garden, after he’d had a good pipe and glass of port. He wanted to smell the daisies handed to him by an adorable little moppet daughter, and to teach a son to ride a pony and how to fish. He wanted an innocent, demure, quiet, and biddable heiress wife, a shy lady who would be a model of English propriety by day and a whore for him in his bedroom by night. He sighed and grunted at his own foolishness.

After all, he had no money of his own.

He was a well-bred English second son.

He also was thirty-two years old and had spent the first blush of his young manhood sitting in mud and worried about getting enough food for his troops. Enough food and enough blankets, bullets, boots, horses, etc. Scavenging and stealing had occupied much of any time not spent in battle or being blind drunk, and the years had just slipped away. To his mind, he was too old now to start afresh, had no home of his own and no income. Of course, he could ask his father for any amount of money his heart desired, but he could not and would not take advantage of a man he so respected. He was back to wondering what to do with the remainder of his life. Most second and third sons could be assured of benevolence from the firstborn who inherited all; however, once his father was gone, he was certain Regis would cut him off without a farthing. They hated the sight of each other.

He truly should plan for the future, but not today. Well, I have finally struck bottom, he suddenly realized. I am wandering the streets, destitute, lost and homeless, and waxing maudlin. I’ll be sobbing on some poor bastard’s neck soon, drunk as a lord. If I am very lucky, perhaps Darcy will adopt me.

A gentleman slapped him on the shoulder. “Good show! Good show!” the man exclaimed then planted himself squarely in Fitzwilliam’s path. “I say, Colonel, may I call you Dick? Excellent! My, you’re a tall one, aren’t you? How’s the weather up there, what? Ha! Ha! Dick, did you happen to know my cousin? Major Billy Hench? Average height, light hair. Oh, surely you knew him. He was at Waterloo, also, and made quite a show for himself there.”

Fitzwilliam stared down at the diminutive man, expecting a little more information, and when it wasn’t forthcoming, he decided he would speed things up a bit.

“Excuse me, sir. Was your cousin also with the Coldstream Guards?”

“No, he was with the 72nd. To tell the truth, he did not actually see much action in the battle, per se, but he did attend the Duke of Richmond’s rout the night before. Surely you were there yourself! No? Are you certain? But my dear Dick, you must be mistaken. It was the place to be, I am told! It’s quite a humorous story, actually; he became frightfully drunk and nearly missed the whole fracas. Got in the game rather late in the day, I’m afraid. Oh, I am certain you must have met him—he wore a red uniform jacket with black boots.”

Oh my God, some people should just be drowned at birth. Fitzwilliam smiled down politely at the eager gentleman. “I don’t recall meeting him, sir, but I am certain I heard about his bravery. If you will excuse me, I must be going. I am late for an important meeting. Good afternoon.” Thank God this bloody war is behind me.

Truth be told, though, the war years were not completely behind Fitzwilliam, whether he acknowledged it or not. Unknown to his friends and even to some of his family, Fitzwilliam had been experiencing the aftermaths of war—battle fatigue and its accompanying nightmares, flashbacks, and panic seizures.

The more these symptoms plagued him, the deeper he fell into his old cycle from the years before—drinking, women, and gambling—until he himself was becoming aware of the adverse effect it was having on his physical, as well as mental, health.

The tide turned upon one comment from his beloved aunt Catherine. “Character is revealed in the dark, Richard.”

Damn old bat.

The remark had struck home. He knew his dark had become more and more appalling, possessing moments he would be loath to have exposed to the world, behavior of which he had become deeply ashamed.

One day he would open up to Darcy. He knew that a day would come eventually, probably during a drunken weekend and after several bottles of whiskey, and maybe then he could begin to confront the demons that tormented him.
He wanted so to have better life
He wanted so to be a better man.






Sunday, November 6, 2011

Dogs and Cats

The Following was found posted - very low - on a certain refrigerator door...

Dear Dogs and Cats (you know who you are):  The dishes on the floor with the paw prints are yours and contain your food, such as it is.  The other dishes are ours and contain our food.  Placing a paw print in the middle of my plate does not mean that it is suddenly, now, your food, nor do we find that aesthetically pleasing in the slightest. 

The stairway is not designed by NASCAR and is not a racetrack.  Racing us to the top of the stairs is not the object.  Tripping us doesn't help because we fall faster than you can run.  We have had years of practice.

We cannot buy anything bigger than a king sized bed.  We are very sorry about this.  Do not think we will continue sleeping pressed into a corner of the mattress, or on the couch, to ensure your comfort.  Dogs and cats can actually curl up into a ball when they sleep.  It is also not necessary to sleep perpendicular to each other, stretched out to the fullest extent possible.  
We also know that sticking tails straight out and having tongues hanging out on the other end to maximize the space that you are taking up, is nothing short of sarcasm.

For the last time, there is no secret exit from the bathroom!  My goodness!  We cannot emphasize this enough.  If, by some miracle, We beat you there and manage to get the door shut, it is not necessary to claw, whine, meow, try to turn the knob or get your paw under the edge in an attempt to open the door.  We must exit through the same door we entered. 
Also, we have been using the bathroom for years - canine/feline attendance is not required.

The proper order for kissing is this:  Kiss us first, then go smell the other dog or cat's bottom.  
Again, we cannot empahsize this enough.

Finally, in fairness, dearest pets, we have posted the following message on the front door:


(1) They live do not.

(2) If you do not want their hair on your clothes, stay off the furniture.  That's why it is referred to as "fur"-niture.

(3) We like our pets a lot better than we like most people.

(4) To you, they are animals.  To us, they are the only children we will ever have, adopted sons/daughters who are short, hairy, walk on all fours and don't speak clearly. 

Remember, dogs and cats are better than kids because they:

(a) eat less,

(b) don't ask for money all the time,

(c) are easier to train,

(d) normally come when called,

(e) never ask to drive the car,

(f) don't hang out with drug-using people,

(g) don't smoke or drink,

(h) don't want to wear your clothes,

(i) don't have to buy the latest fashions,

(j) don't need a gazillion dollars for college

and, best of all,

(k) if they get pregnant, you can sell their children