Thursday, 21 January 2010

Little bit of publishing news...

Although at the moment, I have no novels slated for publication in 2010, I am in a couple of print anthologies this year. One is NAUGHTY BITS 2, which contains my Spice Brief story CHANCE OF A LIFETIME... and the other is this beauty, that's just appeared on!

Alison's Wonderland

It's a paranormal erotic/romantic anthology edited by the fabulous Alison Tyler, with a general theme of fairy tales and fairy tale like stories. Mine's called UNVEILING HIS MUSE, and it's about a graphic artist who falls in love with one of his creations... a fantasy woman who turns out to be a good deal more lifelike than he bargained for. ;)

Eating: Cadbury's Roses
Watching: Poirot
Reading: Inventing the Victorians - Matthew Sweet
Writing: Victorianoid
Feeling: OK

Wednesday, 13 January 2010

Chugging along...

Despite yesterdays mini tantrums over the state of the office, I'm still managing to keep the first draft of IN THE FLESH chugging along. It's pretty rough and ready at the moment, but I plan enhance and polish and layer in both deeper emotion and more historical detail as I work on the second draft. What I'm putting in place now is really the skeleton, although I think some good little bits are already there.

This morning, I've been doing more work on a scene between Beatrice and her brother Charlie, and trying to paint their complicated but basically fond relationship. I enjoy the fact that I'm working in a slightly longer form for a different publisher now, where I can go into areas like this, instead of it constantly having to be *all* sex, sex, sex, with no room to expand on the rest of the characters' lives! Of course there will be masses of eroticism and naughtiness, because that's the centre of the story, and what drives it, but I like being able to surround that by more richness of detail and a more fully developed world for the characters to be sexy and outrageous in. :)

Ah well, must get on. I have a zillion other things to do today, as well as working on ITF... so must get to them, busy, busy, busy.

Eating: grapes
Watching: nothing
Reading: Molesworth - screamingly funny!
Writing: In The Flesh
Feeling: not too bad

Tuesday, 12 January 2010

Dumpster Office of Doom

[It's far, far worse than this now!]

People who know me know that my office is an uninhabitable, unimaginable pit full of clutter, crap and the detritus of a thirty plus year career of total irrational hoarding. It's bad. And it just seems to get worse... and not always down to me. Certain home improvements have impacted unfavourably on my office and created an even greater disaster zone of books and paper and 'stuff' recently.

And today, this is getting me down more than ever, because himself is sorting *his* office out and has lots of space, can move, and can find what he wants. Which makes me very envious, even though I know my predicament is mostly [well, completely] of my own making. Sigh...

Something needs to be done, but I think I can't really tackle it until I get the first draft of IN THE FLESH done, something I intend to complete by the end of April, with luck. But when that time comes, I'm going to take action. I'm going to have to be stern with myself over things like magazines, and set a date before which everything will be thrown away, with no exceptions. I've always found it hard to let go of such things as books, magazines and VHS tapes, my thinking being that one day, I might need something I've read or watched as research or background for my books. Not being a person who's travelled much or done much in the way of exciting jobs, I depend on research materials a lot, to supplement a vivid imagination and a sort of 'empathy' for other lives and times and situations... But I started all this hoarding long before I had access to the internet, and now, my first port of call for research/background is the web, where I can usually find much, much more information, and probably better, than I might have gleaned from an old magazine article or a book I read years ago....

So, come the merry month of May, I'll be starting the long, long project to restore my office to the state of... well... and office. And that, I suppose, is my greatest, belated, New Year's Resolution. Wish me luck...

Eating: chocolate finger biscuits
Watching: snooker
Reading: Daily Life in a Victorian House - Laura Wilson [excellent children's book]
Writing: nothing yet
Feeling: completely fed up and frustrated by Dumpster Office of Doom

Monday, 11 January 2010


Do I suddenly have to keep signing in, again and again, to Blogger? Up until not long ago, I could sign in once in a session, then edit my sidebar thingies on the fly, from the page... not so now. Very annoying.

You'll be pleased to know that I've now begun moving forward again with IN THE FLESH. I spent yesterday pootling about with the 12K I'd completed and doing little tweaks and adjustments to reflect thoughts I've had and research I've uncovered since I first worked on it, many, many months ago. I was pleased to discover that I clicked with Bea, the heroine, again immediately. She's an interesting girl, brave and feisty, who looks on the positive side. She's made silly mistakes, but she's learning from them so she doesn't slip up in quite the same way again. I'm not sure that she's a totally strictly accurate Victorian young lady in her thinking, maybe... but she has to be what she'll be, that's the way I write. And I think I can avoid any super ridiculous anachronisms... ITF will be a bit wallpapery, but not too much, I hope.

Ritchie, I'm already liking very much again too. Especially his ruthless sexiness at this stage. I hope to bring out his more tormented and angsty side later, although it won't be black, bleak, miserable angst, just a guy trying to make the best of the hand life's dealt him.

I'm also, currently, opening the door to the mind of Charlie, Bea's brother, who's an unwise character although not a villain. I hope to make him grow stronger through the book, although at the moment he's teetering on the brink of an erotic tryst in a moonlit garden with another man... Very foolhardy indeed in an age where homosexuality was against the law, and he could go to prison and serve a term of hard labour. Eek, Charlie, be careful!

Eating: chocolate finger biscuits
Watching: nothing yet
Reading: nothing yet today
Writing: IN THE FLESH aka Victorianoid
Feeling: quite positive

Sunday, 10 January 2010

Semi Hibernation of the Blog

So, this blog is pretty much in a semi hibernation, hiatus type state at the moment. Bit like Kuffer, above, and me a lot of the time, especially in this foul snowy weather we're beset with at the moment. Naturally, at the beginning of the year, not much is happening generally in publishing, and not much is happening here at Casa Da Costa writing-wise either.

2010 will be a strange year for me. The first in many, many years when I've not had a new full length novel published, thanks to the decision by Random House to do away with Black Lace [boo hoo]. Times will be tough. I'm not without publications altogether this year though. I've got my two 'Gentlewoman' Victorian set Spice Briefs sometime in Spring, and a contemporary Spice Brief called Another Chance, later in the year. I'm also a contributor in a couple of Harlequin Spice anthologies during the year too: Naughty Bits 2 contains my story Chance of a Lifetime and Alison's Wonderland has a story of mine in it too, called Unveiling His Muse.

But as it stands now, there are no new novel length works out by old PDC until the beginning of 2012!!!!!! That's when my first full length Harlequin Spice novel comes out, the infamous Victorianoid aka IN THE FLESH. I'm beginning to work on that in earnest now, and really having fun [and buying far more research books than I can really afford] but it does seem a long, long time until it hits the shelves. I just hope that my readers don't forget me, and can wait that long to read the story of bold and impetuous Beatrice Weatherly and her Victorian style 'indecent proposal' arrangement with the gorgeous but scandalous Edmund Ellsworth Ritchie. He's a very naughty man, with issues, but also a sense of humour. :)

What else have I been up to lately?

Well, writing a couple of shorter works. One's a longish short story which, all being well, will be included in the Mammoth Book of Hot Romance. This contribution is a sort of hot/cold winter sex romance story, with the temperature elements inspired by the current round of ice and snow. Very much a fun type story, which I hope readers will find entertaining. I've also be working on a shortish novella about a beautiful young man who may or may not be an angel, and the slightly older woman who falls head over heels in love with him. I did originally plan to submit this to a publisher's call, quite a while ago, but me being as slow a writer as a sloth on Valium, it didn't get finished in time for the deadline. I'm currently waiting for the right moment to submit it to a publisher.

I've also got a sort of category length sweeter type romance out at the moment, which I'm waiting to hear about - and which was a lovely change of pace to work on - as well as a couple of proposals and a shorter work sent out by my agent. So, a few irons in the fire, even if nothing definite...

So that's me at the moment, really. Nothing too earthshaking to report... just hanging on in there and hoping for the best, I guess.

Eating: everything... I'm turning into a whale
Watching: lots of Poirot, Sherlock Holmes, cop shows
Reading: research for Victorianoid & a Victorian set novel
Writing: Victorianoid, plus assorted bits of ideas
Feeling: not sure