Work work work

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Almost through the toughest part of the editing phase, but I have to say, my writing partner isn’t impressed. Total snoozefest, apparently!

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Cozy Spots

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Last night was a bit of a celebration – I’ve finally finished writing Hawaiian Healing! It’s always such a good feeling to send off the completed file, close the computer, and know you’re done. The baby will soon go out into the world on it’s own. (You can pre-order a copy here, if you want.)

The real excitement? I can finally read some books myself! I like to take a week off after finishing a project, chill out, and remember why I love books in the first place.

I have a favourite spot I like to read, now that New Zealand is heading for summer, anyway. Our house is teeny tiny, but there’s a little balcony off the bedroom, and it’s a perfect little sun trap. A couple of cushions, my Kindle, and some snacks, and you’re not going to hear a peep from me for hours.

What’s your favourite spot for reading? And now I have some free time, any book recommendations? Clearly I love romance, but I’ll consider most genres except horror.

The Final Countdown

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While most of the world is enjoying summer, or even suffering through a heat wave, here in New Zealand we’re smack in the middle of winter. Worse than that, we’re in the middle of an extra cold snap.

I don’t know about you, but I do not love winter! I would far rather be too hot than too cold. My husband disagrees, but that’s because he’s crazy, don’t listen to him.

There is a bonus to this for me though: there’s never a better time to be a writer! Especially when you’re in the middle of editing, which is the part where I like to procrastinate the most. Instead of going out and convincing friends to spend their lunch break with me, I’m hunkered down in front of the fire most days, blanket over my legs, cat fast asleep on my knee while I tap away at the computer. There are worse ways to spend a winter’s day.

Which leads to the good news – I’m finally finished with my own editing! Now it just goes off to the official editor, the cover has been ordered, and the book is almost ready to be released.

Don’t think I’ll be twiddling my thumbs waiting for the editor though. The book is the first of a trilogy, and I like to get out sequels relatively quickly (nobody likes suspense for too long), so I’m thinking I’ll capitalise on the cold weather, and start writing book number two. The cat will be the only one unhappy about that: I can edit with a furball on my knee, but for some reason, actual writing is impossible!

Where in the world are you at the moment? Are you staying warmer than I am?  And has anyone, ever, mastered writing while dealing with a cold cat that wants cuddles?

Love thyself. And cats.

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This drifted across my twitter feed this morning, and made me laugh far louder than is decent. There’s no life lesson that can’t be improved with cats.

On a more serious note, body angst is something that so many people deal with every day. We might think of ourselves as a series of interchanging parts, where this bit should be bigger, that bit should be smaller, and then everything will be ok. Except, we’re not cars. We’re people, with bodies that are capable of so much more than fitting into somebody else’s mould.

One of the first pieces of (unsolicited) advice I received when I first started writing romance is that you should always be positive about the woman’s body. You can be as idealistic with her suitor as you want, rippling muscles, the whole bit. It is, after all, a fantasy escape for many readers. But for the woman you shouldn’t be afraid to put in “flaws”, as long as you talk about them positively.

I was slightly confused by this advice. Not because I disagreed with it, but more that the person (a respected editor who know the industry well) felt it was necessary to mention. Shouldn’t we always talk about the women in our books positively? Have a range of gorgeous people, who spark desire in others? Particularly in romance, where bodies will be talked about, sometimes in great detail?

I live a lot of my life according to the principle that the personal is political. I make choices every day knowing that it could impact someone else’s choices, and trying to leave the world slightly better than how I found it. So I suppose while this idea of body positivity wasn’t new to me, perhaps it would be to others. Perhaps while I hadn’t even considered it to be an issue, maybe others wouldn’t have considered it to be a problem.

Anyway, I love the cat advice. Make like a cat today, and love your cute behind no matter what shape it is. And maybe find someone who’ll make you purr.