Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Notarize My Book?

I'm over at Inkspot today talking about my two careers colliding. Come on over and say hello.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

October Isn't Just About Halloween

Wondering why there have been so many blogs, news reports, and special events about boobies lately? Might be because October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. It fact, 2009 marks the movement's 25th year.

A lot of my friends and family have participated in various events across the country. My niece Lindsay walked in the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer in Boston. My author friends are Bowling for Boobies tonight. And Tamara Rupke, the niece of an online friend, participated in the Grandmother of all breast cancer awareness events, the 3-day, 60 mile Washington, DC walk.

Here, in Tamara’s own words, is an accounting of her experience.

Many of you have asked, “How was the walk?” Well, here goes..

At the opening ceremony participants carried flags describing their motivation for walking- Dreams, The Future, Myself, My Friend, My Wife, My Mother, etc. Right then I knew it would be an emotional weekend… even for a ‘tough’ girl like me.

The walk itself was much more difficult than I imagined. Many walkers suffered from blisters and sore/pulled muscles. 60 miles in 3 days is INSANE, walking or not. After the first night I heard one girl talking to her sister about getting a blister on her behind. (I assume they were walking for their mother.) One sister said to the other, “Mom always said she was going to blister our A$$.” The Pit Stops became our best friend. We were able to re-vaseline our tootsies, change socks, get a snack, rehydrate, tinkle, stretch, and hit the road again… not necessarily in that order. There were also cheering stations along the way where supporters greeted walkers with candy, (one camper greeted us with wine J) and wow did they cheer! Oh, and I mustn’t forget the creative pink ta-ta paraphernalia!! Men in pink tutus, Harley’s with bra’s strapped to the front handlebars, and shirts that read, “boobs, sweat, and tears”, or “Yeah their fake, my real ones tried to kill me!” I could go on and on. So much creativity.

Camp featured local entertainment which Charlyn and I regrettably declined. We preferred to stretch, shower, and sleep. Camp was surprising comfortable. We had hot showers, delicious meals, and all the coffee one could ask for. I’ve never seen so many pink tents in my life! And of course one white tent, the Remembrance Tent, where participants could record their story and honor loved ones.

The weekend carried many emotions, fear, anticipation, happiness, sadness, disappointment, appreciation, courage…. Needless to say, I had many “ah ha” moments. There is one memory I will take with me forever and reminds me why I walked that weekend. On Day 2 as we walked through Bethesda, a woman who appeared to be shopping approached and asked us why were walking. We told her to benefit Susan G Komen for the Cure. I noticed the woman choke up. As she turned and walked away carrying her shopping bags she looked back and replied, “It’s because of people like you that I am still alive today.” I wanted to share that story with all of you because I feel like it’s also because of YOU that this woman is still alive today. Thank you so much for your support and for allowing me to participate in such a worthy event. I had a great time and I hope if any of you have ever considered doing anything like this that you don’t think twice and just go for it! It is an experience of a lifetime.

Thank you so much from the bottom of my heart!!!


The month is almost over, but it's not too late to contribute to one of these very worthy events. So put down the candy corn and get involved in one way or another. It's never too late to raise awareness and fight breast cancer. Make it a year-round event.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Bravo - What In The Hell Were You Thinking?

Bravo TV has become the "Rich People Behaving Badly" channel.

There, I've said it. And I say to you, Bravo TV: Shame, shame, shame.

I've always been a big Bravo TV watcher, which still has some of my favorites shows like Top Chef and Inside the Actor's Studio, and until recently considered it a fairly classy network. But somewhere along the line, someone at the network decided that watching rich, privileged women cat fight, bitch and scream, and spend with no conscience would be great and enlightening entertainment. I've watched one episode each (and not even full episodes) of The Real Housewives of Atlanta, The Real Housewives of Orange County, The Real Housewives of New York and The Real Housewives of New Jersey, and wanted to retch each time. And don't even get me started on a few of their other shows.

Real housewives my big fat ass!

Even in good times, I would find these shows appalling. Given the present state of the economy, job losses and foreclosures, I find these shows a slap in the face of the REAL housewives and househusbands across the nation who daily clip coupons, juggle car pools, scrub floors, care for sick children, and fix broken plumping. These men and women raise entire families on what one of the wives on a Bravo show pays for a cocktail dress. They are the REAL heroes of the American family. I shudder to think what other countries think when they watch these Bravo atrocities.

Question for James Lipton: Mr. Lipton, do you have to go to the studio with a bag over your head?

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Wanted - Serious Art Patron (without the wink)

Often in old movies, we are introduced to the “art patron.” A wealthy man or woman who subsidizes a budding artist financially so that the artist – a composer, painter, writer – can continue being brilliant on his or her road to discovery without the crushing worries of expenses. Sometimes the title “art patron” came with a sly wink. Sometimes not.

Recently in an interview, I was asked what was the one thing I know now that I wish I’d known before I started writing. My answer was that I wish I had known more about the business side of writing. That answer is true, but sanitized. I do wish I had known more about the biz of writing and publishing, but more to the point, I wish I had known how much out-of-pocket money it was going to cost me for promoting my work, because without full blown promotion, even the best books can die on the vine.

This brings up another valid question. Had I known the rocky debt road ahead of me, would I still have continued down the path? Absolutely! You see, this is my dream. It’s all I’ve ever wanted to be. I was born to write. It’s the only thing in my life that comes as easy to me as breathing in and out. And I think I’m pretty good at it. I can also say, without even a slight blush, that I am one of the hardest working authors on the planet.

According to my agent, my manager, the producer who optioned my Odelia Grey series, and even some murmurings from my publisher, I am about to “break through.” This means my books and my sales could hit it big in the future. It means my dreams are about to explode onto the scene.

You know what? My gut is telling me that, too. Even when I feel crushed emotionally, financially, and spiritually by the business of writing, I keep going, like the Energizer Bunny, convinced in my stout heart that all my dreams will soon be realized.

Film producers have backers
Olympic hopefuls have sponsors
Painters have patrons

This writer needs one of the above to keep fighting the good fight.

My manager and I have kicked around several ideas to package me for investment purposes. Basically, we need to find an investor/sponsor/backer/patron who can fund the writing expenses of my career for this last leg of the journey without needing a quick return. Remember, publishing moves SLOWLY.

If you know of someone who might be interested in discussing a professional and proper arrangement, please pass this along to them. Interested parties should contact me at

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Bowling for Boobies!

Christa Faust, one of my very favorite people, has put together a team of Sister In Crime members and friends for the upcoming Bowling for Boobies fund raising event on October 27, 2009.

The event runs from 6-9 pm and takes place at Jillian's Hi-Life on Universal City Walk in Los Angeles. At this time, celebrity bowlers include Jane Wiedlin of The Go Go's, and Thomas Lennon of RENO 911, and, of course, our own Sisters In Crime celebrities: Christa Faust, Naomi Hirahara, A.H.Ream, Jane DiLucchio, Sue Stimpson, and Maureen McLaughlin.

Unfortunately, I'm unable to be there, but I will be present in spirit and in checkbook.

Why Bowling for Boobies? Here's why, in Christa's own heart-felt words:

A good friend of mine named Edith recently took her own life after discovering that her breast cancer had returned even after a double mastectomy. I was devastated, as were all her friends, but Edith was an amazing woman who always wanted to help others and so it is in her memory that I have formed Team Sisters in Crime for The Busted Foundation's Bowling for Boobies charity tournament.

The Busted Foundation helps women who beat breast cancer but can't beat the bills. I know times are lean for everyone, and there's very little left over for anything extra, but please consider donating to sponsor my team. No amount is too small. Even one dollar helps keep women like Edith from being crushed under the financial pressures in the aftermath of breast cancer.

You can donate online here:

Read more about the event here:

Thanks!- Christa

The Sisters In Crime team is very close to meeting their $6,000 goal. So let's all pitch in and help them bowl a perfect game. As Christa says, no amount is too small.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Next Stop - Bakersfield!

This coming Saturday, October 10th, I will be signing books in Bakersfield, CA, at Russo's Books.

Russo's is a family-owned independent bookstore. It's a lovely place. Light and airy and full of knowledgeable and friendly staff. I signed there earlier this year and they're having me back to sign Ghost a la Mode.

If you're in the Bakersfield area, drop on by and say hello. Make Russo's your indie in Bakersfield.

Saturday, October 10th - 1:00 - 3:00 pm
Russo's Books
9000 Ming Avenue #I-4
Bakersfield, CA 93311
(661) 665-4686

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

The Passion of the Pen

I'm writing about the passion of the pen over at Inkspot today.

Come on over and say hello.

Monday, October 05, 2009

Joining Cirque Du Soleil

The folks from Cirque Du Soleil were at WEHO this weekend advertising their new Kooza show. I think this is the best headshot I've ever taken.

Friday, October 02, 2009

Heigh-Ho, See You At WEHO

This Sunday, October 4th, West Hollywood will once again host the West Hollywood Book Fair. This event is in its eighth year and is always a lot of fun for the entire family.

The hours are 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. and the location is the West Hollywood Park on San Vicente Blvd. (corner of Melrose and San Vicente)

Unlike the monster Los Angeles Times Book Festival, author panels at WEHO do not require tickets and are easy to attend. There is also plenty of free parking across the street at the Pacific Design Center, as well as parking in other lots with a free shuttle to the book fair.

I'll be at the Sisters In Crime/LA booth signing books from 1-2. At 2:30 I'll be on a panel in the mystery pavilion and signing books again after that.

Come on down! This is a fun way to spend a sunny Sunday.