Thursday, May 28, 2009

Signed on the Dotted Line!

Tuesday I signed and delivered the option agreement for Too Big To Miss, the first book in my Odelia Grey mystery series. The book was optioned by producer Brad Wyman and No Net Films, Inc. My book has been optioned before, and although the person who optioned it worked very hard, it never made it into production. Maybe Mr. Wyman and his company will be the magic combination to take Odelia from print to screen.

I met with Brad Wyman a couple of weeks ago over coffee. He's a very pleasant sort, seems fun-loving, focused, high energy, and dedicated to his craft, and to making Odelia into a household name. Gotta love that in a producer. He's also pretty cute, though truthfully, I'd think the Elephant Man was cute if he was optioning my work.

The next step is seeing where this all leads, something I have no control over.


Wednesday, May 27, 2009

T Minus 10

10 days from today is the Mud Run. Although for me it's really a Mud Walk. I've been blogging about this for over a year and now it's finally here! Am I ready? Nope. Am I still doing it. You betcha!!! Wild horses couldn't stop me from being at that starting line with my colleagues and friends. I will be forging ahead in the spirit of every fat, middle-aged woman with a dream.

In the next 8 days I'll be pushing my training hard to get my stamina up, then I'll take a day or so to rest my body before the event. I'm going to get this thing done, or I'll be signing up to do it next year ... and every year after that until I do complete it in the time limit.

My plan is to keep to a steady pace, one foot in front of the other, taking each hill and each obstacle as they come, much like the way I write - tackling each chapter, each page, each word until a manuscript is done.

That reminds me, I also have a manuscript due to my publisher in ... let's see ... 66 days.

Friday, May 22, 2009


I'm over at Inkspot today talking about writing in the raw, or close to it.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Memo to Self: I Am Not Afraid

I'm guest blogging this week on the ForeWord Magazine Publishing Insider Blog.

Drop on by!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Your Name In One of My Novels

One of the things that brings me great joy is seeing my books raise money for worthy causes through the auctioning off of names of characters at fund raisers. Names in my books bring in an average of $300-$400 a pop, with the most raised to date being $1,800 for a pair of names at a live auction. It is also not unusual for bidders to approach me about how to get their name or the name of a loved one in one of my books after losing in the bidding.

On June 13th, I will be walking once again in the annual Ronald McDonald House Los Angeles Walk for Kids. And once again a team of people from my law firm will be participating. The team this year, however, is much smaller than last year, so I decided to get creative in my fund raising.

If you would like to have your name or the name of a friend or loved one in one of my future Odelia Grey novels or Ghost of Granny Apples novels, here’s your chance. Please read the information below carefully to avoid confusion and disappointment.

The Deal – The first 6 people to e-mail me offering a minimum donation of $100 to sponsor my walk for the Ronald McDonald House Los Angeles will receive a character’s name in either the 2nd Ghost of Granny Apples book (working title – “Hot ‘n Haunting” pub. date September 2010) or the 6th Odelia Grey novel (working title – “Body Bingo” pub. date February 2011). The six characters will be distributed three to each book. You may place more than one bid. A signed copy of the book will also be received upon publication.

The Details – Do NOT make your donation to the Ronald McDonald House YET. First e-mail me with your desire to enter the bidding. All e-mails should go to and should have the words “Bid” in the subject line.

In your e-mail, provide your full name, your contact information, the name you would like used in the book, your relationship to the person whose name you are buying if it is not your own, and the book you would prefer that name to appear in. (If you are not obtaining this for yourself, please make sure the person will have NO objections to being in one of my novels.) The minimum bid is $100, but feel free to offer more. This is going to a very good cause. Note: This is not an auction. The prizes will go to the first 6 people offering at least a $100 donation.

Deadlines – The bidding is open immediately and closes upon the receipt of 6 fulfilled bids. Upon receipt of your bid, you will be directed on how to sponsor me directly with the event. Payment must be received by the walk officials before June 4th. In the event a bidder fails to make the promised donation, his or her bid will be voided and the spot will go to the next bidder based on time and date of bid received.

Fine Print – Bidder understands that this prize is for a character’s name only and such character may or may not bear any likeness in physical appearance or personality to the individual bearing the character’s name. By bidding, bidder hereby gives consent to the use of such name and releases Sue Ann Jaffarian and Midnight Ink/Llewellyn Worldwide from any and all liability in connection with the use of such name.

Let the bidding begin!

P.S. -- If you do not wish to bid on a character name, but still want to sponsor me on the walk, you may make any size donation by going to my page on the Ronald McDonald Los Angeles Walk for Kids website.

Thank you, everyone.

Monday, May 11, 2009

How Odelia Spent Her Summer Vacation!

Enter How Odelia Spent Her Summer Vacation and Win a Signed Copy of Ghost à la Mode!

To enter – take a photo of any cover of an Odelia Grey novel in someplace interesting or doing something fun this summer and forward it to, along with a very short explanation of the photo, and your snail mail address.

All entries must be in a suitable and common format (i.e., jpg) and become the property of Sue Ann Jaffarian upon entry. Contest will run from May 16 through September 15, 2009. Entries received after September 15, 2009 will not be considered. Three winners will be chosen and their names and photos will be posted on Babble ‘n Blog a week after contest closes.

All entries must be made via e-mail. No snail mail entries.

Be original and creative. Put yourself into the photo, if possible. When sending photo, explain where it is and what you are doing – don’t make me guess. Do not be vulgar or obscene. Do not depict anything illegal (i.e., Odelia should not be holding up a bank, etc.)

Everyone have a fun summer with Odelia Grey and her friends.

Friday, May 08, 2009

Never Say Never

Whenever you say you will NEVER do something, those words always come back to bite you on your ass. Trust me. They do.

In the past two weeks I have said on at least 2 other blogs that it was my intention of NEVER signing up for Twitter. In fact, my exact words on the blog The Kill Zone were: "I intend to leave this earth as I entered it – Twitter-free."

Ouch, there goes another chunk of my ass.

Yes, folks, contrary to my words, I am now officially on Twitter. And it's all the fault of a man named Brad Wyman. You see, Brad is the producer who is about to option Too Big To Miss. I LOVE Brad. There is little I would not do for Brad. He is optioning my book - ergo he is my hero. When I met Brad on Wednesday for coffee, he told me I MUST get on Twitter ASAP. So, after a few days of grumbling, whining, and stomping my foot, I made the leap into the Twitter universe.

Truth is, I didn't need all my ass anyway.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Mouse is Back - YAY!

There is simply not enough time to read all the books I want to read and all the books I should read. I read a lot more before I started writing. Now, with 2 books a year under contract, I catch my pleasure reading whenever and wherever I can.

Take my Mud Run Training for instance ...

I started out listening to high energy music on my iPod Shuffle. In time I got bored and wished I could spend the hours on the trail listening to books instead. I was under the misguided impression that the tiny and convenient Shuffle wasn't suited for this. But being the good friend she is, Ashley pointed out the error in my thinking. She listens to books on her Shuffle all the time when she runs. So ... with a big gleam in my eye ... this past weekend I downloaded a book to my Shuffle and am happily "reading" 1 to 2 hours a day again.

For my first book I chose Little Scarlet by Walter Mosely, a book I'd been wanting to read for a couple of years. I LOVE Mosely's writing, especially his Easy Rawlins series. I've read most of the Rawlins books prior to Little Scarlet and was devastated when his friend, the colorful and deadly Raymond Alexander, better known as Mouse, was presumed killed. I say "presumed" because even when it happened, I never believed it. There was no body. It had been spirited away by Mouse's wife. The assumption was that Mouse was dead. Easy believed he was dead. I always held hope he was not.

Today on my daily 4 mi walk I reached the chapter in Little Scarlett that confirmed my suspicions and hope. Mouse is alive!!! Upon returning home, I did some research into Mosley's books. Seems that if I had read Six Easy Pieces, the collection of stories released between Little Scarlett and Bad Boy Brawley Brown, I would have known that. Silly me!

[Above, Don Cheadle stealing the scene from Denzel Washington with his portrayal of Mouse in Devil In A Blue Dress]

Friday, May 01, 2009

You Can't Make This Shit Up

A couple of days ago the attorney in the office 2 doors down from mine called me to look out her window. Below, about a block down our street, was a SWAT van, 7 police cars and a dark SUV with a color bar on top. There were also a few unidentified vans. The street, however, wasn’t cordoned off, something one would think would happen had it been a real SWAT event. Curious and concerned about what was going on (after all, there was a bomb scare in a high rise a few blocks away earlier in the week), I called the local LAPD station. They knew of no police action in the area – hence it was probably a movie/TV shoot. At first glance, it’s difficult to tell from 16 stories up, but one of the empty buildings on our street is often used for filming.

Fast forward to today, Friday. I took the day off work. After a delightful lunch at Lily’s in Venice with my BFF Ashley , I headed home to find 5 young men standing at the front door to my apartment building dressed in LAPD windbreakers with “Police” scrawled across their backs. One of them had a small battering ram. Above us on the 2nd floor landing was another cop trying to get in through the 2nd floor security door.

Um, I thought to myself as I tried to back out of the front gate, this IS NOT a film shoot.

Cop #1 (holding battering ram”): “Ma’am, do you have a key to let us in?”

Me (to myself): Shit, why didn’t I go in through the back gate.

Me to Cop #1: “Yes, but why do you need to get in?”

Cop #2 into walkie talkie: “Hold on, we have someone to let us in.”

Cop #1 to me: “Parole violation.”

Hmm, they need 5, no 6 counting cop trying to get in through 2nd floor, cops for a parole violation?

Me to all of them: “May I see some badges, please?” (And, no, I hadn’t been drinking.)

After looking at me as if I had asked them all out on a group date, Cop #1 to me: “I can show you my gun.” (And he did.)

Cop #2 to me (raising his jacket and shirt to show a gun tucked into the waist of his jeans – and showing off some nice abs in the bargain): “I have a gun, too.”

Me: “The gun doesn’t interest me, badges do.” (I SWEAR I said this. They may have had guns, but I've been through menopause.)

Cop #2 pulled his shirt down.

Cops #3 and #4 showed me their badges like good boys.

Cop #1: “If you don’t let us in, we’ll just break down the door.”

Me as I opened the front door for them: “Um, what floor is all this happening on?”

Cop #2: “End apartment, ground floor.”

Whew, I live on the 3rd floor.

Whatever happened on the first floor, it didn’t seem to cause much commotion. And I’m happy to say I don’t know the people living in that apartment. But it did take 7 hours before I believed it had happened at all. Nor did I leave my apartment the rest of the day.