Kia: Sexualizing Baby Hamsters

You know I don’t rant that often, but I had to, God help me.

1) There are no female hamster engineers.

2) The male engineers turn their tiny female pet hamster into a hot babe.

3) Male hamsters look like hamsters.  Female hamsters look like hot women with hamster heads.

4) Male hamsters do not stop to check if their beloved pet is okay. (Nevermind that they clearly kept her confined to a plastic ball.) They don’t even talk to her.  They pile into the car to go buy more hamsters and turn them against their will into hot female hamsters presumably for their sexual amusement.  Because women are interchangeable as long as they are hot. Because buying pets for your sexual gratification is totally okay.  Because sexual slavery – which is what we are making a nod to here – is totally cool.

5) Female hamsters are immediately attracted to chunky male engineers.

Overall message: Women are lacking, but men came make them better and hotter through science, so they can be used for sex.  ::headdesk::

Reaction from my 18 year old, “Idk I mean it’s kia. What do you expect. I think it’s weird they’re getting baby hamsters & sexualizing them.”  WTF, Kia.  Seriously.

Who approved this?

Not to mention than from strategic point of view, this commercial is an epic fail.  Kia advertises to a young male demographic because Kias are cheap.  Kids don’t have money to buy electric cars or hybrids; that demographic is wealthier, better educated, and ranges to middle age.  You know how can afford these cars?  Empty nesters.  They tried this experiment with Honda Element before and it had to be discontinued, because 18-25 males do not purchase new and expensive cars.  They buy used sporty looking things on their own.  You know who buys cars for that demographic?  Parents.  We bought three cars in the past three years, one to replace our aging Honda Element and two for the kids.  Kid 2 is coming up on the driving age.

Kia believes that women do not buy their cars.  I’d hate to disappoint them.

Guess what we won’t be buying?

Thank you for all your funnies and weirdness

Thank you for all your funnies and weirdness

You guys are the best.  :)

I need to do things today before the trip.  I have to charge my kindle and my phone.  I need to find a really good absorbing audiobook for the flight.  I am debating on whether I should bring the laptop.  On one hand, we’ll be stuck on the plane a lot.  Flying to San Francisco, next day flying to Seattle, then flying back.  That’s a long time to work.  On other hand my laptop is heavy.  Do I want to drag it or do I not want to drag it, that is the question.

So far combo of a good audiobook and knitting has worked really well for me on the plane, but this rewrite is going well.  Sometimes you hit your stride and if we didn’t have to go on this trip, I would just keep rolling.  Are there any audiobooks that are awesome enough to distract me from contemplating the plane icing over and falling out of the sky?

As an aside, I somehow morphed into hit it and quit it reader. I was reading the Daughter of Smoke and Bone and I was having a nice time. Then I put it down for some reason and I have no pull to go back to it. I don’t know why.   If you do get a chance, it’s an interesting book, or at least the first half I read was pretty awesome.

I need to rewrite this really stubborn scene, where Kate slides into whiny.

I need to make some sort of Sweep in Peace happen.

We already checked on life insurance; it’s active.

I need to make a travel folder, where I print our itinerary in case all of our electronic devices spontaneously fail.

What am I forgetting?


I am so bummed out today.  We’ve been working long days and the draft is up to 34K, some of it new, some copied and pasted and then rewritten.  Today I just have no energy and no will to do anything.  I am trying my best, but I just can’t scrape together enough brain cells.  I’ve gone through some usual reasons for being bummed out.  It’s not the kids, the husband, the pets, the money, or even the upcoming trip to San Francisco and Seattle.  I don’t know why I am a sad potato today.  I just am.

Maybe it’s Magic Shifts.  Kate is sad for someone, so I might be also sad by extension.  Maybe it’s one of those odd writer things.

So if you have a few minutes, share something funny or good in the comments.  I will start.

 This awesome dog toy is courtesy of Kristi, who found it in her Bark Box.


 Update: thank you to Wilbur in the comments for linking what might possibly be the strangest video I’ve ever seen.

KissCon in Seattle

If you are in San Francisco or Seattle, we will be there this weekend.  :)

Avon Romance Presents


KissCon San Rafael:

Avon Books, an Imprint of HarperCollins Publishers

date: Saturday, November 22, 2014

11:00 AM to 3:00 PM (PST)

San Rafael, CA


KissCon Seattle:

Date: Sunday, November 23, 2014

VIP Reception: 2 pm

Public Signing: 3 pm

From Avon Publicity Department:

Event overview:

This event will be a private tea between readers and authors, followed by a public event. The tea is ticketed ($10 is admission plus one mass market book; $15 is admission plus one trade paperback). There will be tea, coffee, sweet treats, and Little Black Dress wine. All tickets also enter readers into a chance to win a $50 bookstore certificate compliments of Avon – and a private shopping excursion with one of the event authors! The public event is interactive, featuring an author speed round of questions; romance trivia (authors asking audience) and book signings. We are selling 100 tickets for the VIP event; and currently, we’re looking at 200 “free” tickets for the public event. Everyone who books a “free” public event ticket will also be entered to win a $25 gc to the store, compliments of Avon.


· Ilona Andrews—BURN FOR ME (mass market)

· Elizabeth Boyle—THE VISCOUNT WHO LIVED DOWN THE LANE (mass market)

· Julie Brannagh—COVERING KENDALL (mass market)

· Laura Kaye—HARD TO COME BY (mass market)

· Rachel Gibson—WHAT I LOVE ABOUT YOU (mass market)

· Lorraine Heath—ONCE MORE MY DARLING ROGUE (mass market)

· Sophie Jordan—WILD (trade paperback)


· Cathy Maxwell—THE GROOM SAYS YES (mass market)


· Julia Quinn – THE SUM OF ALL KISSES (mass market)

· Lori Wilde—CHRISTMAS AT TWILIGHT (mass market)

Getting Out of My Own Way

Getting Out of My Own Way

Over the last three days, I realized that Magic Shifts needed a major revision.  This notion first occurred to me on Thursday and I resisted it with everything I had because the book is already late and it’s not close to done.  Last thing I want is to complicate the process any further.  Unfortunately, it stayed with me, eating at my brain.  The problem is that when we write a book, it has to be our best effort.  The object of the game isn’t to write a fast book or to turn something in, but to write a good book that people will enjoy reading.  Magic Shifts is perfectly serviceable.  But I don’t want to do perfectly serviceable when it could be better.

This is likely why I will never be financially as successful as some of the other writers.  I can’t do four books a year.  I can’t write 5,000 words in a day – well, unless it’s a truly remarkable day.  Gordon once asked what tattoo I would get if I wanted one and I told him I’d get a turtle.  That’s how I feel professionally.  Our career is sadly empty of meteoric rises.  We steady climbed and plodded upward in our own slow way.

And just as well, in writing I rarely get a burst of brilliance and feverishly write down 20,000 words  in a weekend.  It’s just not me.

So undertaking a massive revision was so not the plan.  However, on Friday I talked to Gordon about it and he agrees with me.  Motivation is the book’s main drive; being personally invested is what pulls the readers through the narrative.  We have to have a strong motivation, or the book will fail.

I am really frustrated by the set back.  I am also oddly relieved, because even though there is a mountain of work between us and the end, at least we figured out how to streamline it.  I hope that people will like the new motivation better.  Because in fiction, it’s not the love or hate reaction that kills you.  It’s the “meh.”

I have the new Scrivener file into which I will begin to cut and paste.  I have a large supply of tea.  Kids are promising to somewhat feed themselves.  No time like the present.

Covers, Covers, Covers

Bakka Phoenix Books, one of the most prominent bookstores in Canada, had this to say about Burn For Me.

Bakka Phoenix Marketing

Speaking of covers, Elizabeth Hunter, one of my friends, is reissuing her series with new covers.  She had a moment of doubt today, so she tweeted the new covers at me.

Old Covers



New Covers



Changing covers is always a risky move, because you are interfering with the image readers associate with the series, but in this case I don’t think she has anything to worry about. The new covers are beautiful. For those of you interested, here is the series blurb.

Welcome to the Elemental Mysteries, where history and the paranormal collide, and where no secret stays hidden forever. Join five hundred year old rare book dealer, Giovanni Vecchio, and librarian, Beatrice De Novo, as they travel the world in search of the mystery that brought them together, the same mystery that could tear everything they love apart.

You can find out more at Elizabeth’s site.

It’s cold…

It’s cold in Texas today.  Given our usual fare of past 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38C), the current 38F (3C) coupled with overcast sky and cold wind feels downright icy.  I know people from the North are shaking their heads at us right now, but we can’t help being delicate.  :)  I think some hot tea would be good.  Old Navy is having a sale on sweatpants, which seems like an odd coincidence.  I decided I should totally order new sweatpants.

Also, the power keeps going out and coming back on.  I know it’s the whole neighborhood, because a couple of streets over a house alarm goes off every time the power comes back on.  The constant up and down is annoying.  The speakers on one of the computers blew and won’t turn on, even though they were plugged into the surge protector.  That makes me question the surge protector’s integrity.

Working on Kate and Curran today.  I made some notes for this scene really early in the morning and they kind of read funny.

Kate and George


Make difficult

OMG flies back


Believe it or not, this makes total sense to me, but I don’t think anybody else could make heads or tails of it.

Well, that’s it for my post.  How is it going in your neck of the woods?  Cold and windy or warm and sunny?

News and Sweep in Peace

Wait!  Read the news first!


Text message from Kid 1:  “Mom!  My teacher just showed me that Magic Breaks was nominated for Goodreads Awards!  That’s like a big deal!”

You can find us in the Fantasy category, and, I feel all politician-like, we would appreciate your vote.

Romantic Times

MAGIC BREAKS has been nominated for Romantic Times Reviewers Choice Best Book Award in Urban Fantasy category.

BURN FOR ME has been nominated for Romantic Times Reviewers Choice Best Book Award in Paranormal Worldbuilding category.

Thank you, RT!


In the crazy never happens to us news, Burn For Me has gone back to print only two weeks after it had been released.  This is one of those insane things that happen to other people.


Okay, now you can go.  Here is the link to two new parts of Sweep in Peace.  Start with Chapter Eight, Part 2 and then go to Chapter Nine, Part 1.


Author Notes

Author Notes

Sometimes as authors write, they leave little notes for themselves.  I thought you might like the note from today.

Heat spread through me. God, I wanted him.

He nipped the soft skin of my bottom lip and moved lower, painting a hot line with his lips and tongue down my neck. “Baby.”

Blah-blah, not feeling it, will finish later.