Saturday, December 24, 2005

Have you been Naughty or Nice?

I have to admit to being both this year. But I like to think I've been more nice than naughty, at least in real life. (I'll save the naughty for my writing:))

Merry Christmas to all! And may Santa bring you everything you deserve!

Here's where you can find the current lowdown on the big guy:

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Peter Jackson! Wow!

I used to want to be the Jodie Foster of Romance. I still love Jodie, but I have a new idol/mentor. Peter Jackson. The man is absolutely incredible. Not only does he look great (I think he's lost like a hundred pounds since he did Lord of the Rings) but he's hot! As evidenced by his before and after pics on the left.I love the way this man thinks.

I saw King Kong last week. It was one of the best movies I'd seen in a long time. It has everything. Great acting, great plot, beautiful cinematography, to-die-for (literally) action scenes and one of the best leading men in Hollywood (and I'm not talking about Adrian Brody) This makes 4 Holiday seasons in a row that Jackson has a blockbuster movie out. You just can't argue with that sort of success. Now I just have to figure out how to get published and hit the NYT best seller list 4 times in a row!

Hey, if you don't aim high, you'll never get anywhere. Right?

Which reminds me. If you haven't voted yet don't forget. Vote for The War Bride and help make me the Peter Jackson of Romance!

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Round 2 starts today!

I'm happy to announce that the next round of the American Title 2 Contest starts today and I'm still in the running! I truly appreciate all the support and well wishes I've received from so many people. Without your help, I would never have made it to this second round.

Unfortunately, we had to say goodbye to Jeanmarie Hamilton and Suzan Hyssen. These are two incredibly talented ladies and I hate that elimination is a part of this process, but I expect that good things will happen for them in the future. Remember their names!

This next round will be particularly grueling because the 3 contestants with the lowest votes will be eliminated. The featured blurb this round is a description of the story's hero and heroine. Here's mine from The War Bride:

Miles Mountkeefe lives a gentleman’s fantasy of danger and excitement as a British spy in the Napoleonic wars. But when his partner is murdered, Miles’s entire world crumbles and he charges himself with a single-minded mission: find the murderer. Getting his partner’s widow to cooperate is the key to his investigation; unfortunately, Tess Beauchamp has an agenda of her own. She might be the most beautiful woman he’s ever set eyes on, but he has no intention of letting anyone, or anything stand in his way… including his growing attraction for her.

Tess Beauchamp yearns to return to her homeland of Spain and right the wrongs of her past. When Miles Mountkeefe shows up on her London doorstep seeking her help in solving her husband’s murder, Tess realizes this is her golden chance. But Tess is guarding a secret she dare not reveal--and the last man on earth she trusts is the only man who can find her daughter.

To vote, please go to

Voting for Round 2 ends on January 1.


Friday, December 16, 2005

Is Microsoft the devil?

Warning: This blog is Christmas commercialism at its best.

I know it happened with the Cabbage Patch dolls. And it happened with Playstation. Now it's X-Box 360. The demand for Micosoft's newest game creation far outweighs the supply. Is this done on purpose? And why? Will holding back shipments of X-Box 360 create even more demand for it after the Christmas shopping rush? Or did Mircosoft make a mistake and not produce enough of these babies? Or... is there some techno glitch with the new X-Boxes they aren't sharing? Either way, the result is the same. Lots of techno-geeks (including my beloved 14 year old son) will go without the one thing they wanted most these Holidays.

My local Target store got 14 of them in for the After Thanksgiving sale, all of which went in the first few minutes the store opened, and have only gotten 2 in since. One local man was even stalked at the Walmart and mugged for his X-box 360. What's up with that? I have to ask myself, is Microsoft the devil or what?

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Popcorn Time

One of the best things about the holidays (besides all the cheer and good will toward men, of course) is great flicks!

I admit it, I'm an entertainment ho. Movies, television, books, whatever the medium might be, I just love good stories. This holiday, I'm looking forward to the new SJP movie, The Family Stone. Besides my favorite Sex in the City gal, it's got a great cast, including Diane Keaton, Claire Danes, Rachel McAdams, and that's just the chicks. We also get so see yummy Dermot Mulroney (maybe he can redeem himself from that awful "Wedding Date" movie) Luke Wilson and Craig T. Nelson (who always makes me laugh).

My pal Erin and I love to do movie reviews at work. We usually agree on the biggies, although I think I'm still the only woman in America who hated Steel Magnolias (Yes, Erin, you will never change my mind on that one). It will be interesting to see how we compare on films this Holiday.

Some of the other flicks I plan on seeing:

King Kong (I've heard Jack Black does an awesome job as the villain)

Fun with Dick and Jane (besides having a great title, it's got Jim Carrey and Tea Leoni to recommend it)

The Producers (a sorry substitute for the real thing on Broadway, but hey, it's better than nothing)

Memoirs of a Geisha (loved the book. Will be interesting to see if the movie does it justice)

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Love Monkey!

I love that title. It's a book, yes, but it's also a new CBS show premiering January 17 starring one of my favorite actors, Tom Cavanagh. You might remember him as "Ed", one of the best TV shows of the last few years. Of course, since I loved Ed, it was cancelled (think Sports Night, another great show I loved that also got axed) I hope I don't curse Love Monkey, cause I'm already half in love with it and I haven't even seen an episode yet. The book has been heralded as "Sex in the City" for men. Gotta love that! It's going to the top of my Have to Read NOW list.

Here's a summary:

Tom Cavanagh (“Ed”) stars as Tom Farrell, a 30-something up and coming single record executive who’s navigating the tumultuous and highly amusing waters of work and dating in New York City in this new show based on the best-selling book by Kyle Smith.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Agh! It's over

I always love the end to Survivor. But I hate it, too. It means that the season is over and I have to wait for the next one. Those of you who are Survivor junkies understand this angst. This season was great. Lots of drama and laughs. As much as I made fun of Dudd, he was entertaining and I love to be entertained and he didn't let me down in the final tribal council.

But what I love best is when the person I want to win, does. Danni absolutely rocked. She played this game fantastically. Kudos to her. And shame on Rafe for making this anything other than what it is. A Game. Maybe you should have eaten the chicken, Rafe. Starvation does weird things to people. If you wanted to go to the Final 2, then you don't tell the person with the power to "do what they think is best." I have to wait till the end of January for it to begin all over again. Survivor, Panama, Exile Island. Sounds good, huh?

Friday, December 09, 2005

Bah! It's not the Curse!

Cindy, Cindy, Cindy! You gotta keep your eye on the big prize, baby! You were right about the curse. One day, someone will win the car and the money. But in a game where knowledge is power, unfortunately, you had none. Despite the fact that you were in the power alliance, you went to tribal council twice without knowing who was being voted out. You even commented on that. You knew you were out of the loop and when you were presented with the golden opportunity to get into the loop, you took the consolation prize instead.

Now, I agree, a brand new car is a very sweet consolation prize, but it's not a million dollars and it's not a hundred thousand dollars (which is what the runner up gets). The instant you picked the car for yourself, you were toast. Even my 12 and 14 year old knew that. We all sat around the living room shaking our heads.

The key to Survivor is knowing your opponents and you didn't. As Rafe said, if you had given him a car, he would have never voted you out. I think Danni and Lydia would have felt the same way, too.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Talk about Hot!

Eden's Pleasure is my friend, Kate Pearce's first book and I have to tell you, it's fantastic! I'm not the only one who thinks so, either. Here's one of the reviews this fab book is getting!

Title: Eden’s Pleasure
Author: Kate Pearce
Publisher: Ellora’s Cave Publishing
Publisher URL:
ISBN: 1-4199-0408-6
Reviewer: Francesca Hayne
Rating: 5 Stars
Heat level: O

After eight years in a horrendous marriage, Eden is ready to experience a little pleasurable freedom. After having been caught in a compromising situation with Gervase Harcourt, she’s ready to explore her deepest desires. When Gideon crosses her path to make amends for his part in her disastrous marriage, he promises to teach her the joys of passion. But once Gervase enters the picture, the fantasy of erotic, no strings attached exploration becomes difficult to live with when faced with the reality of her love for him.

This book truly moved me, making me feel an instant connection to the characters and leaving me empowered by the story. I really enjoyed the no-nonsense attitude Eden displays, as well as the compounding emotional turmoil that the situation creates. Any story that can drain me emotionally as well as sexually is rare indeed, and Eden’s Pleasure does both. Gervase has a challenging personality that I can’t help but feel an attraction to. He knows what he wants and doesn’t fail to take what he needs. This take-charge attitude is both desirable and shocking, not to mention devilishly sexy. There isn’t a moment in this whole novel that I didn’t sense a romantic and loving connection between the characters. They do things together to showcase their love, making their joy seem real. But the sex! Cool me down with a cold shower because these sex scenes are scorching hot. There is a bit of everything here, from sex toys to voyeurism and even a bit of ménage, and the story never slows or becomes dull. Overall, I greatly enjoyed Eden’s Pleasure and will be placing Ms. Pearce on my auto buy list.

Francesca Hayne
Just Erotic Romance Reviews

Sunday, December 04, 2005

I'm it!

What's "it", you ask? Remember in grade school when you chased each other on the playground and tagged people? You'd scream, You're it! Well, I've been blog tagged by Lucy. I'm supposed to come up with 15 things I like/feel about books.

MARIA's 15 myths on books:

1. It is essential to have a book with you at all times. It's like your wallet or your keys or your lipstick. You never know when you'll need it. TRUE!

2. Never judge a book by it's cover. FALSE. Unfortunately, a good cover makes a big difference. Not that a great book can't have a bad cover, but it's hard to get over it unless it's an author you already love.

3. Women who read romance have no love life. FALSE. Most women find that reading a good romance actually enhances their love life. That particular theory was scientifically tested by moi, btw.

4. Anyone can write a romance. Uh... FALSE. Sure, anyone can write any sort of book, but a good book is hard to write. Period. No matter what the genre.

5. Romance is just smut packaged up pretty for women. GRRRR... FALSE! Romance and Erotica are not smut. There's a big difference between Romance, Erotic and Pornography.

6. Julia Ross rocks. TRUE! If you love historicals and you've never read her, you need to.

7. Historicals are dead. FALSE. I refuse to believe that.

8. Westerns are dead. FALSE. Refuse to believe that, as well.

9. The best thing you can do for your child's education is to read to them every night as small childen, then encourage them to read for themselves as they get older. Well, duh! TRUE.

10. Maria's idea of a good date with her husband is: going out to dinner, then to a movie, then to the bookstore, where they each browse for about an hour, buy lots of books and have coffee, then go home and do none of your business. TRUE :-)

11. The best books make you both laugh and cry. TRUE. But it's hard to find those.

12. Nothing irks me more than a bad book that's been published. TRUE. I shouldn't have to explain that one.

13. The book is always better than the movie. TRUE.

14. The bigger the book, the better. Uhm... FALSE. That bigger is better theory only works for certain things. And it's not what you're thinking of, either!

15. The Great Gatsby is the finest book of the 20th century. FALSE. I've heard/read this many times. It's beautifully written, but I hate the characters. And for me, it's all about the characters.

Okay, so now I get to tag 3 unsuspecting victims. I think I'll tag some of my fellow American Title 2 finalists. Suzan, Ruth and Michele, you're it!

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Et tu, Stephenie?

I don't know who was more surprised. Me or Dudd. You gotta hand it to Danni. She outwitted and outplayed. Now all she has to do is outlast. She's got a great chance to win this game if she she can get rid of Rafe. I love that girl!

But the biggest shocker tonight came from Steph. I thought she was smarter. Voting off her home boy was a big mistake. If Steph makes it the final two, Dudd is going to enjoy spilling Jersey girl's blood all over tribal council. It will be nasty, I guarantee it.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

St. Anthony and Endorphins

I'm such a rush junkie. I live for endorphins. But mine aren't the good exercise endorphins, mine are the stress produced kind. You know, the kind you get when you wait till the very last minute to do something important?

I used to think it was just being lazy, or procrastinating that would get me in trouble. But the real trouble is that I usually don't get in trouble. Somehow, I always manage to pull the rabbit out of the hat. Now, being Catholic, I have to admit I have St. Anthony (the patron saint of lost causes, amongst other things) to thank for getting me out of my many scrapes. St. Anthony is one of the better all purpose saints for praying to in times of desperation. He was very good to me earlier this year when I was days away from a staging deadline at work. I think I even converted some of my fellow co-workers that day.

The point being, I just sent off my Golden Heart entry to Texas (For those of you who don't know, the Golden Heart is the big contest of unpublished romance writers) I paid my entry fee and registered well in advance. But the entry has to be in Houston by December 2. Even though my entry was completed months ago, I waited till today to fed-ex it out of Tallahassee. Why did I wait till the last minute? I can't say, except when I left the Kinko's building, I was smiling. I know, I'm sick...

Monday, November 28, 2005

The new James Bond

It's been recently announced that British Actor, Daniel Craig will replace Pierce Brosnan as James Bond. Not sure how I feel about that. I liked Pierce. And I'm especially not sure how I feel about a blond 007. Don't get me wrong. I have nothing against blond men. My husband is blond (or he was when I met him at 21--his hair has molted into a light brown over the years) and Miles Mountkeefe is blond (the hero in my historical, The War Bride) but for some reason, James Bond in my mind is dark haired, a la Sean Connery.

The new Bond film, "Casino Royale" one of Ian Fleming's early books promises to be "definitely darker, more character and less gadgets." I kind of like the gadgets, but I also like the promise of darker and more character, so I'll just have to wait and see. I'm just sad that Pierce is considered "too old" for the role. Sigh.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Will the real Mr. Darcy please stand up?

I just saw the new Kiera Knightly version of Pride and Prejudice. Now don't get me wrong. Mediocre Jane Austen (and we're talking really mediocre, here) is better than no Jane Austen. When you love a book as much as I love Pride and Prejudice, you're bound to be disappointed in a screen version. But does it have to be so off?

The 1995 BBC production featuring Colin Firth was great. That version rocked. Sure, it was 6 hours long, but it paid off. It was true to the spirit of the book. Maybe the lesson here is that if you can't do something well, it shouldn't be done at all. But the problem is I think this shorter 2 hour version could have been so much better than what it was. I had no problem with them cutting some of the secondary characters (although it's the secondary characters in P&P that make the book so rich). But the chopped up dialogue in this big screen version was just short of blasphamy.

There are many wonderful and beautiful images in this film. We see Kiera Knightly staring off into space or out the window more times than I could count. There are images of the English countryside that are absolutely breathtaking. All this gives us a wonderful picture of Regency England, that imo, could have been done much better through Austen's spectacular dialogue. The filmakers actually tried to "explain" the story through additional dialogue, cutting out some of the best lines in the book. I guess they thought audiences wouldn't get it.

Then there was Mr. Darcy's portrayal as a wimp. Maybe they thought he would be too unsympathetic, but the truth of the matter is that Jane Austen's Mr. Darcy IS prideful and arrogant. It's through his love for Elizabeth that he changes into a different man. This version waters down those undesirable qualities and makes Mr. Darcy a "shyer" version of what he really is. Ugh. Matthew McFadden walks around the film looking like he needs some Pepto Bismal.

That all said, I'm still glad I saw the movie. I know, I know. I just spent the last twenty minutes blogging about why it's an inferior version to the BBC one. But like I said, mediocre Austen is better than no Austen. And Kiera Knightly did a great job as Elizabeth.

I just wish the film makers hadn't thought they needed to do Jane Austen for Dummies.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Pride and Prejudice

It's one of my favorite books. I love the BBC version featuring Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy. It will be hard to see someone else in the role. I mean, c'mon. Colin Firth IS Mr. Darcy. But I'm willing to give this new guy a try. That is if I could ever see the friggin movie! It hasn't come to Tallahassee yet, but when it does, I'll be the first in line.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Voting begins today!

The first round of the American Title II contest begins today! I'm nervous, excited and mainly just plain happy to be included with such a great group of talented writers. To vote please go to:

Here's a sneak peek at what happens after my first line.

The War Bride
by Maria Geraci

January, 1815
On the Coast of Northern Spain

Miles Mountkeefe had seen men die before, but that was on the battlefield where it was expected.

This was not.

He clamped his hand over the bullet hole in his partner's chest. Blood seeped through his fingers, covering his knuckles with its sticky warmth. He had arrived too late. Paul Beauchamp was going to die.

The realization snapped him out of the odd lethargy humming through his veins. He tore the cravat off his neck and bunched the silk strip into a tight wad, pressing it over the gurgling wound. “Who did this?”

“Please,” Beauchamp sputtered. “Tess, give her…”

The cravat, which only seconds ago had glowed white under the full moon, was now a dark crimson.

A slap of cold salt water hit Miles in the face. The wave smashed over Beauchamp's listless body. It soaked the cravat, washing a stream of blood back into the ocean. He grabbed Beauchamp under his arms and dragged him away from the shoreline causing Beauchamp to moan in protest. Damn it! He knew better than this. Moving his partner would only hasten the inevitable.

Miles gulped in a lungful of the sharp sea air hoping it would clear his muddied brain. A dark haze lingered on the edge of his vision. His mouth felt as if it was stuffed with cotton. What was wrong with him?

“Give Tess…” Beauchamp's words faded beneath the roar of the crashing waves.

Miles fell to his knees. “Give her what?” he asked, struggling to keep his voice from shaking. Miles had been scheduled to meet Rodriquez tonight--not Beauchamp. He glanced at the Spaniard lying a few feet away. Rodriquez had been shot once through the head. Dead, even before Miles had arrived.

“Mess… age.” Beauchamp dragged his hand inside the lining of his jacket. “Please, give…” His limp fingers fell away empty.

Miles reached inside Beauchamp's jacket and pulled out a folded sheet of paper secured with a wax seal. “This letter is for your wife?”

Beauchamp's voice rallied with a harsh strength. “Yes… but only you must deliver it. Tell Tess, I’m sorry… so sorry.”

Miles stared at the note in his hand. Blood had tainted one edge of the paper.

“Promise me, Mountkeefe.” Beauchamp’s final words faded into the wind.

Miles pocketed the note and crawled to the edge of the water. His fingers dug into the wet sand as the overcooked veal he had eaten earlier came up to revisit.

He waited for the dizziness to pass, then shoved his hands in the water, scrubbing them until the salt stung his flesh raw. He stood and dragged the sleeve of his jacket over his damp mouth.

He would give this note to Beauchamp's wife.

But not until he discovered who had betrayed them tonight.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

It's Actually Begun!

I'm the modern day version of doubting Thomas. Or maybe I'm just a really visual person. But for me, seeing is believing. And baby, today, I believe! The beginning of the American Title II Contest is here!

Meet the American Title II Contestants

Our pictures and bios are up and next week voting will begin on our first lines. I'm both excited and nervous but mainly pumped up!

Sunday, November 06, 2005

American Title II Countdown

This beautiful fountain is located in the region in Spain where my historical romance, THE WAR BRIDE takes place.

As much fun as I've had blogging about Survivor or movies or whatever, it's time to get down to business. In just 8 days the first American Title II voting round will begin. Yikes! Where has time gone? That was supposed to happen WAY in the future. And yet, a large part of me is anxious to get going, to have the whole thing over with as well. I love/hate surprises!

Here's the lowdown on the first round of voting (and the only one I'm guaranteed to be in!)

January issue of ROMANTIC TIME BOOKCLUB MAGAZINE: First line & bio
Posted online/voting: Nov. 14-27
We'll know who's cut (2): Nov. 28

The first round will feature all 11 finalist's first line, their very short bio (and I mean very short. Do you know how hard it is to condense your life into 100 words or less???) as well as feature a picture of each of us:))

As I've been trying to get the word out about this contest, I've been asked by so people what the first line of my book is that I apparently say it even in my sleep (at least that's what Mike Geraci says) so I figured I'd post it here, too.

The War Bride is a sensual romantic adventure set in the post Napoleonic era featuring a British spy and a Spanish war bride who must join forces to find her husband's killer. I had a lot of fun/angst writing this book and one day soon, hopefully you'll be able to read lots more of it!

by Maria Geraci

Miles Mountkeefe had seen men die before, but that was on the battlefield where it was expected-this was not.

You can all ooh and ah now. LOL!

Stay tuned for a longer excerpt as we get closer to the first voting period. Luckily, I'll be off to Atlanta next weekend for some fun and serious plotting with my good friend Mel so I'll be able to take my mind off this for awhile!

Friday, November 04, 2005

Bye Bye Brandon

Sigh. Why do all the ones I like always go?

I don't know who I dislike more, Jamie for being a world class ass, Judd for being too stupid to live, Stephenie for being a cold hearted bitch or Rafe and Cindy for being the biggest wusses alive.

Friday, October 28, 2005

Speaking of Positive Attitudes...

Last night, Amy got voted out of Survivor. She was a class act all the way. I really hated to see her go.

Not much else happened. Sadly, the 'tosterone was kept under wraps. Dudd was quiet and Jamie actually showed a bit of smarts when he revealed his strategy to keep Dudd around in the final two with him. Of course, Jamie isn't getting into the final two. That would be a miracle. He's sure to screw up between now and then. His paranoia with the other team was fun to watch, though. I guess a little chocolate and a dip in the ole swimming hole was too much for him.

Bobby Jon is emerging as the Stepford Survivor. Who wrote those lines for him? "Today it's all about Fellowship." Fellowship? These people want to slit your throat, BJ! Not commune with you! Jeez! Did you learn nothing in Palau???

I still say this is Brandon and Gary's game, with Danni and Rafe as strong possibilities to the final four. Next week is the merge, so we'll see who comes out strong.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Keeping a Positive Attitude

I love people who have a positive outlook on life. They're the sort of people I like being around. The people I want to emulate.

You know the other kind. The ones that suck the oxygen right out of the room. The "oh, poor me, nothing ever goes my way" sort of people? You lose five years of your life just by standing next to them.

As this American Title II Contest begins in just a few weeks, I know keeping a positive attitude is the key to success. Win or lose, I believe that one day I will be published. This contest is merely a stepping stone in my career.

My 12 year old daughter, an aspring Broadway actress :) summed it up best. "When I shoot for the moon, I get there!" You go girl! Now rub some of that off on me!

Friday, October 21, 2005

I didn't know I was so smart, man!

Dudd, do you have to give me more amnunition, dude?


All of America saw the puzzle before you did. And Rafe would have seen it, too, if he was looking at it from your angle. He had all the pieces in place, something you couldn't have done in a million years..oh, but wait, first you have to actually get the bag OPEN, Judd.

The ball rolling challenge was great. All that lovely male 'tosterone flying in the air. Jamie and Bobby Jon got into a shouting match. LOL! As Bobby J puts it "we were like 2 bulls in heat". They're both dumb as dirt, but man, cleaned up, these 2 with their lovely southern accents and gorgeous looks could probably charm the panties off most of female America. I liked the fact that Jamie didn't seem overly concerned about the whole thing. "We're southern, we're crazy." Bobby J took it a bit more seriously. He'll be in trouble down the road if he doesn't contain his temper. It didn't hurt him with his tribe, though. Gary called Bobby J "the heart of the tribe" or maybe he was the "spirit of the tribe". Not sure. Might have to look at my dvr again.

Stephenie continues to disappoint more as the season progresses. She and Cindy (both of which have more muscles than Rafe and Brian x 4) couldn't overpower Olive Oil and a wounded Amy. It was pathetic. Just shut up, Stephenie (and please stop with the "Oh MY God!'s) You'd think the chick has never seen Survivor before, let alone already had her shot as a player. Every twist and turn manages to shock Stephenie into prayer. When the tribe needed you, Steph, you couldn't deliver. It was Dudd and Jamie that saved the day. And doesn't Dudd know it.

Amy is the hero of the hour. Her tribe didn't win, but she was one bad ass chick that never quit. I love that kind of positive spirit! Stephenie used to have it, but lost it somewhere between Palau and Guatamala. At tribal council when Jeff asked Amy about her ankle, you could see the "oh no" in her eyes. She did a great job of playing it down.

I'm sorry to see Brian go. He's a smart kid. But someone had to be kicked off. Brian lost the ball challenge for them and Amy stepped up to the plate. And in the end, Brian and his fem/boy genes was probably going to prove too diabolical. Smart move on Yaxha's part.

As for Margaret, that was a long time in coming. Dudd's hostility at tribal council was a hoot, though. I don't think Jeff knew what to make of it.

It looks like the tribes are going to merge next week. This is excellent news for Cindy and Rafe who look ready to bolt. Gary, Bobby J, Brandon and Danni are now in control of the game. If they can get Cindy and Rafe over to their side, it will be a piece of cake. Dudd and Jamie are walking targets. They are too physically strong to leave them around, and Steph will be gone by default by aligning herself with them. Those 3 are history.

The way I see it now, this game is either Gary's or Brandon's to lose if they screw up.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

What Peanuts Character are you?

You are Woodstock!

Which Peanuts Character are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

Woodstock? I'm not even a Peanuts person? But a Peanuts animal?? Oh, well. I adore Peanuts. Charles Schultz was a genius. I made my husband take this quiz and he was Linus:)

My friend Mel is not the only quiz ho around. I got this off another American Title II finalist's, blog, Suzanna Owens.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

The War Bride

I found this lovely picture on a site about Ciudad Rodrigo (the city in Western Spain where my historical, The War Bride, takes place) It's also very appropriate because the battle of Ciudad Rodrigo (in which my heroine got into a lot of trouble) took place in the dead of winter and there was snow on the ground. People always have trouble believing that it snows in Spain.

My plan is to superimpose a saber (there's a thrilling sword scene at the end of the book) and a rose (because I think roses symbolize romance) over the cathedral backdrop. Hence, I get the image of old world, danger and romance. What do you think?

Now if I could just figure a way to get that picture permanently in my blog description!! I know there is a way, damn it, and I'm determined to find it.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Golden Boy no more

Sigh... the men just don't get it. Blake, aka, "Golden Boy" put his foot in his mouth one too many times last night and got booted from his Survivor fraternity.

Helloooo, Blake! Not only were Danni and Amy not impressed with the stories of your girlfriend's double D sized boobs, but even Bobby Jon and Brandon were snoozing on that. What did Brandon say, "I'm not into novelty breasts"? It's probably the most interesting thing country boy has uttered the entire game.

I have to give it to Brian (but then, who can compete with the diabolic fem/boy gene?) He was brilliant. He saved himself last night and I really thought he was agoner. As I said before, I think he's going to go far in this game.

Danni has voted herself into an interesting position. She was the Delilah to Blake's Samson. Not sure how that will work out for her, but I still like her. A lot. I really hope she makes it to the final four.

Lydia rose about 10 notches last night. While Stephenie and the rest of her tribe were crying about losing the reward challenge, Lydia got out there and made lemonade out of lemons. Literally. She chopped citrus and danced and cracked jokes and it was just what that sad sack of losers needed to motivate them. And she performed really well in the Immunity challenge. Lydia is slowly rising to the leadership position that Stephenie is too whiney to take. Steph has been a real disappointment this go around. She's a great athlete, has a great spirit, but she is an individualist- not a team player. It's no coincidence that she's on the losing team 2 seasons in a row. The girl couldn't motivate her way out of a paperbag.

As for Laurel and Hardy, er, I mean, Pokey and, I mean, Jamie and Judd. Not even worth mentioning. Can you say, pathetic?

Next week's previews show a shirtless Bobby Jon and Jamie squaring off. I just wonder where Judd and his 'tosterone are during this. Could be an interesting threesome, don't you think?

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Survivor Update--Too Stupid to Win

The men are too stupid to win. Period. If a woman doesn't win this one, I'll puke.

First there's Judd--or rather, Dudd, who, when paired with Brandon, was sort of funny and entertaining in a Dumb and Dumber sort of way. On his own, however, he's just plain stupid. The word is testosterone, Dudd-- not tosterone.

Then we have Bobby Jon. I really liked Bobby Jon and Stephenie on Survivor Palau. But the old saying that fish and company start to smell in 3 days has something to it. I came to the conclusion awhile back that Bobby Jon is a spaz. A cute spaz, but a spaz just the same. Notice how often he trips and falls down or overthrows or basically just tries so hard on the challenges that he ends up blowing it. Tonight, while his team was rowing to retrieve their bag in the immunity challenge, Bobby Jon was rowing frantically... in the wrong direction. Enough said. I wish someone would give him a modeling contract so he could just smile and look purty.

And then there's Gary. This dude keeps digging his own grave deeper and deeper. Tonight, he confronted Danni and denied once again that he was an NFL quarterback. AGH! This is so frustrating because I actually like Gary.

If Margaret doesn't do something brilliant and fast, her days are numbered. Did you see the stunned look on her face when Judd did his Judas act? She shouldn't have been surprised. That will teach you, Margaret, to run around playing Florence Nightengale to a bunch of genetically inferior beings, aka, the men on your team. How many of them were puking and suffering from heat stroke on day one? The thanks you will get for nursing them is a deadpan look from Jeff when he says "Margaret, the tribe has spoken." Dummm.....

Poor Stephenie. By the time this show is over, America will be sick of her. The editing and Jeff will see to that. How many times do we have to hear that poor poor Stephenie is on "the losing team"? Now, besides being on the losing team, Stephenie has bad luck. Maybe Lydia can find a chicken and sacrifice it to rid Steph of her mal mojo. Otherwise, I fear Steph is doomed to go down in Survivor history as the biggest loser of all.

Last but not least are Rafe and Brian (who, for our purposes I will not lump in with the men) So far, these guys have gone under the radar and played it smart. I think they will both last a long time.

Tonight's favorite: Danni. She is a kick ass chick that hasn't done or said anything dumb. And, surprise, she manages to get on the winning team! She's my early favorite to win. A beautiful woman who is smart and strong. At least so far...

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Wow! I won something

I actually won something. I never win anything. But I just found out that I have won my friend Sydney Gallagher's blog contest. I get an authentic beer mug from the Cannstatter Volksfest 2005! Which is very cool, because my husband, better known simply as Mike Geraci (not just Mike, but Mike Geraci- must have both first and last name in there) was born in Stuttgart where the festival takes place. Though there's not a drop of German blood in him (he was an army brat) he has a great affinity with the German people (they both love beer) So this will make a nice little present for him.

Check out Sydney's website:

Saturday, October 01, 2005

The Kia Marathon

Hey Maria, I'm stealing your blog again--but this time it's for a good cause. :)

Our writing chapter, RWA Online, hosts a writing marathon every October in honor of a former member, Kia Cochrane.

Here's Kia's story.

Copyright 2002
DanaRae Pomeroy

The Kia Marathon

Kia was a special lady to many of the people in the Romance Section and, later, the RWA Forum. She was published in contemporary category romance as Kia Cochran. Just prior to her death, she'd turned her hand to attempting mystery romances.

I was one of the few fortunate enough to meet Kia in person. In fact, we 'camped' in her back yard in our RV for three weeks, the spring before she died. Kia is responsible (long story) for our move to Greenville SC, 'tho I'd never met her in person until we pulled into their driveway.

Several of us came to know Kia well through doing the Artist Way course via email and forming a Sacred Circle. When I had the opportunity to spend three weeks literally in her backyard, it was as if we were old friends. In addition to her writing, Kia was a voracious reader. She made weekly trips to the local library and and supported the Friends of the Library in their sales fundraising. She was also a crafter and viewed her knitting and her quilting as she did her writing ... a puzzle to be put together, a story to be told, an image to be created.

Kia was always encouraging and her primary mantra to the rest of us was to write, write the story, tell the story, do not stop, do not pull out the red pencil, do not listen to the internal critic, until the story is on paper or disk. Then, go back and plug the holes, flesh the characters, add the description, whatever. The important thing was to write and tell the story, then worry about the "warts."

Kia survived breast cancer and was headed toward her fifth year "clear" exam when bone cancer set in. Most folks never knew she was a cancer survivor, nor that she was as ill as she was the last several months. She refused to go to the hospital until the very end, wanting to stay at home with her husband, surrounded by the plants she loved and the dogs who were her "children." She passed away in August of 2000, but she left a memory of her caring and a reminder that the most important thing a writer can do is tell a story that will touch the readers' hearts.

What Classic Movie are you?

My good friend Mel is obsessed with these litle tests. I have to admit, they're good for a smile. So I'm Raiders of the Lost Ark. Does that mean I get Harrison Ford as my co-star?

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Suvivor Update

Tonight was Brianna's turn to go. Not that she didn't deserve it. She let her team down during the very exciting Mayan basketball game (the best part of tonight's show).

But did you hear Jamie's reason for voting her out? "I like my girls crazy and pretty, and she's neither." Uhm, are YOU crazy, Jamie? I think I smell sour grapes there, buddy. First off, she's not your girl, and secondly, what does crazy and pretty have to do with contributing to the team? I did like you, Jamie. Until tonight. But you're still cute. Good thing I like my survivor guys hunky and dumb.

The rest of the show was fairly ho-hum. Danni(who looks a lot like my friend Angie) is starting to give Stephenie a little competition in the tough girl role. And frankly, I'm glad. Stephenie is beginning to grate on my nerves. How many more times do we have to hear her complain about being on the loser team? And did anyone else notice that Rafe's and Brian's voices keep getting higher with each episode? If there was any glass on the island, it'd be shattered by now.

Episode favorites: Judd and Brandon (they're like Dumb and Dumber, only dumberer) I hope they stick around awhile, cuz these guys are entertaining and I like the money to go to someone who keeps me watching.

Episode duds: Lydia and Jamie. Lydia impressed me last week, but that's over. She'll have to do some sort of Mayan voodoo to turn me around now. But if Jamie would just keep his mouth shut and his shirt off, I can easily be won back:)

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Jodie Foster

Enough about Survivor and Desperate Housewives and
Rome and what color I am. It's time to blog about something really important. Jodie Foster.

I want to be the Jodie Foster of Romance.

Ha! There! I said it. My deepest and most personal thoughts are now on display for the world to see (or at least the two people who read my blog :)

I love Jodie Foster. She's my all time favorite actress. I never miss any of her movies. Last weekend, I went to see Flightplan. The local critics here in Tallahassee panned it. Humph. I do admit, the plot is hokey. It's worse than hokey. You almost have to be on drugs to understand it. But you don't have to be on drugs to appreciate that Jodie Foster is one hell of an actress.

I want to write the way Jodie Foster acts. I know-- a lofty goal, but hey, if you don't dream big, then your big dreams won't come true. Right?

Monday, September 26, 2005

You snooze, you lose

Maria is at work tonight. I gave her all day to blog, but she didn't.

So, I'm doing it for her.

That's right, MariaGeraci (all-one-word) I'm ganking your blog. If you can't handle the blog responsibility, then I'll handle it for you.

Your fans depend on you, MariaGeraci (all-one-word), and the more you fail to blog, the more you fail your fans.

I know you're reading this at work right now. (Hi everybody! I'm Maria's friend, Mel. )

Don't let us down again, MariaGeraci (all-one-word), your fans depend on you.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Torn between two lovers...

That's Maria.

Should she watch Desperate Housewives or Rome?

Hmmmm. Poor Maria. Such a tough decision.

She has TIVO...she could record one and watch the other; but which show will win her affection?

I plan to watch Housewives because HBO will replay Rome 14,000 times this week. But what will Maria do?

What Color are You?

you are orchid

Your dominant hues are red and blue. You're confident and like showing people new ideas. You play well with others and can be very influential if you want to be.

Your saturation level is lower than average - You don't stress out over things and don't understand people who do. Finishing projects may sometimes be a challenge, but you schedule time as you see fit and the important things all happen in the end, even if not everyone sees your grand master plan.

Your outlook on life is bright. You see good things in situations where others may not be able to, and it frustrates you to see them get down on everything.
the html color quiz

I did this fun color test from my friend, Mel's site. I'm an orchid. I've always considered myself a "red" sort of girl, but the description is totally right on.

Friday, September 23, 2005

American What?

Most people who know me, know I'm a writer. My life is an open book. But I have laughed more in the past 2 days than in a long time. This is an example of a pretty typical conversation:

Maria: I'm a finalist in a publishing contest called American Title!

Jane Doe: What??? That's fantastic! I didn't know you could sing!!

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Honesty, the best policy?

OK, I'm a huge Survivor fan. I've watched the show ever since Richard Hatch bared his nalgas for all of America to enjoy (at least 10% of America to enjoy, but I suspect that percentage is slightly higher. Not that there's anything wrong with that)

This season one of the players is a retired NFL quarterback. Gary something. I think he played for the Cowboys. Anyhoo, he's lied to his fellow tribemates and told them he's a landscaper. He thinks if his tribe knows he used to be a pro football player, his nalgas will get voted off first.

Tonight, a member of the opposing team outed him. When his tribe confronted him, he denied it. Of course, the truth will come out in the end. The editing suggests that this particular little plot line will pay off with some big drama in a future episode. I certainly hope so, because so far this season is a snoozer.


I love my friend Maria so much that I set up a blog for her. That's love.

The best part about this is, I can sneak onto her blog and post messages as often as I want. heehee.

So, Maria finaled in the American Title II contest sponsored by Dorchester Publishing and The Romantic Times. Of course, this comes as no surprise to me since she is a very skilled and brilliant writer who will be the next big thing one of these days.

Two other finalists in the contest are fellow chaptermates, Gina Black and Debra Parmley. This will be a fantabulous competition!

Now, I'm off to soccer for a while. I wonder how long it will be before Maria realizes I've posted again. *snort*

Maria is a FINALIST!

The War Bride by Maria Geraci is an American Title II finalist!

Congrats Maria!

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