Tuesday, 31 July 2007

Intimidate me not...

Yes, it’s my turn. Check out for the prequel and see the next chapter on

“Do you see what I see?” Emmeline’s voice was low and filled with dread.

Shade’s mouth was a grim line as his eyes followed the path of spent zucchinis. “There has been a hell of a battle here.”

“Who could possibly be alive after this?” Emmeline shook her head at the devastation she saw. “Do you think Rafe managed to escape?”

Shade swore softly in disgust. It always came down to his bloody twin. Why couldn’t this woman see and admit the real truth?
“Oh aye, he’s alive and I am sure you will get to use your peeler on my precious brother,” he growled in frustration, his fangs glinting in the moonlight.

“Jealous?” The thought that Shade could be sent a hot shiver down the fine quills on her back.

“What do you want of me woman?” Shade stormed over and pulled Emmeline into his arms, holding her tight and close as she squirmed against his hard body. “You know what I crave from you.”

“I cannot. I must uphold the laws of Khaleena.” What were they again? She could not think clearly when he held her so, his breath hot on her skin, his heart hammering wildly against hers.

“I could take you right here and now and the laws be damned,” he whispered against lips. “You know you want me.”

“I…” Emmeline stopped as she felt Shade stagger suddenly.

“Damn it I have been stung by a zucchini.” He fell to the ground in agony.

Emmeline knew speed was of the essence. She would have to suck hard and fast to save her man. Her man?
Hmmm...whatever will happen next???

My neighbour told me to stick it up my arse today. Nice huh? I wasn’t particularly upset for two reasons. The first being that I had heard worse than that before. I used to work for a government department and a phone company and on a daily basis I was told to do that as well as go forth and multiply. People are incredibly courageous over the phone – not. So hearing that from this twerp did not bother me. The second reason was he was wrong and I was right. He also said it under his breath as a parting shot thinking I would not hear him. I simply replied with a smile “and you have a nice day.” He could not get off my property fast enough due to his embarrassment.

How did this arse sticking up comment come about? He wanted to put a new fence up between our properties. There is a law that states that both owners must agree and be given reciprocal quotes, warnings and a month's notice if they are expected to pay half -otherwise the person who puts it up pays for it. He foolishly went ahead and put the fence up. About a week ago I arrived home one night to see the fence ripped out and new fence posts in. It did not bother me per se as the fence would eventually have to be replaced in the next five years or so. As he does not live on the property and I had no way to reach him I thought – fine you want a new fence without consultation – you pay for it. The next day the fence was up when I got home.

He rocked up the front steps this morning all matey-like and said “I have two quotes for the fence.” He started to hand them to me. I pointed out the law and that he was supposed to hand me three quotes before the work was done and give me one month to decide or find different quotes. As he hadn’t I was not paying for the fence. How did I even know these quotes were even correct? Did I not trust him he said? Well no, is the obvious answer. He then said I was morally obliged to pay. I said you were morally obliged to consult me. He looked stunned. Then he got stupid. “I’ll put the old fence back up then.” Okay, I said go ahead. He looked at me like a stunned mullet and then began to get aggressive. I stood and listened and look bored and when he was finished I said I was still not paying for the fence as we both know he had done the wrong thing. That’s when he used his parting shot of me sticking it up for arse.

I am as reasonable as the next person. I know the law and my rights. Handing over money to someone on a couple of dodgy quotes for a replacing a perfectly good fence with another is insanity. Was I worried or scared? No because real men don’t carrying on like pork chops. I just went outside a moment ago to throw something in the bin. He saw me then ducked. He is embarrassed. So he should be. I refuse to let anyone try to intimidate me with brute strength or words.
Results of the last quiz - "Who is the scariest?" There was a tie between "A romance novelist in the middle of doing edits"and "A woman with PMS and no access to chocolate." No one was scared of a vampire and a romance novelist with PMS and no access to chocolate can kick Freddie Kruger's skinny white arse.
Go ahead: Live with abandon. Be outrageous at any age. What are you saving your best self for?

Monday, 30 July 2007

Shock, awe and aggravate...

I got handed a wad of money today. Why? Why not? I am worth it. However it was not for services rendered – I am a working girl but not that kind of working girl – not that I knock those ladies as everyone has to get by however they can. The money I got handed was for me to go off and buy all the stuff for the office I harped on about until they caved and gave in to my persistent requests. Excellent. The big honcho handed me money with the look of ‘will this shut you up for the moment?’ Oh how foolish these corporate types are. I never shut up. I am not genetically built to shut up just because someone wants me to. However I do have the right DNA for spending other people’s money.

I was told a story years ago about how as a young woman my grandmother Elsie, in the 1920’s, stood on her front verandah and waited for her ‘prince’ to come. She was a very dramatic grandmother when I was eight years old so I always pictured her as a young Mary Pickford with her cupid bow lips, draped dramatically against a verandah post, waiting for her Douglas Fairbanks to turn up. In lieu of Doug, a wild canny Scot turned up and swept her off her feet. After they married he handed her a wad of cash and said “buy whatever you like.” My grandmother like any woman worth her salt bought exactly what she wanted. She may have been a would-be silent film star but she was smart. I have most of that furniture today in my bedroom. It matches perfectly with the wild and elaborate bedhead I have that everyone swears comes from a bordello. It’s a talking piece that’s for sure. Anyway whenever I look at the furniture I think of the young Elsie and her prince.

So genetically the women in my family understand money. We can spend it and we can save it. We always have some tucked away that no one ever knows about. When my mother was dying she reminded me of her stash. She told me to go out and buy something I wanted. But at that particular moment when she said it the only thing I wanted to buy I could not have. Life sucks badly sometimes.

So, I have this money. I can buy whatever I like and I like it. It’s funny how people want to shut you up, because in reality they know you are right, persistently so, and they trust you to do the right thing. Skippy, my assistant, is in awe of my power to shock, awe and aggravate. I like to think in some small way I am doing by best to initiate her into the dark side. I don’t expect she will ever stop rigidly following rules but she has begun to believe that making mistakes is not such a horrible thing and that being polite yet to the point gets you what you want. I expect she will still slump on her desk and keen low and demonically at various points during the day but I reckon once I have the coffee maker I won’t be able to hear her.

So my point is, and I do have one, tell people what you think politely and firmly. The worst they can do is tell you to shut and the best is they can hand you money.

I read Grasshopper’s entry into the great blog saga. I thought orange nipples were bad but this – is for want of a better word amazing. I blame the Zen Queen Anny Cook – for leading her on with her killer zucchinis for god sake. What is a poor Aussie girl to other than to kick arse on Tuesday. What this space.

Go ahead: Live with abandon. Be outrageous at any age. What are you saving your best self for?

Sunday, 29 July 2007

Body image...

Take a squiz at my latest cover. It’s book one in The Goddess Grind series with Total-E-Bound. Why is it called The Goddess Grind? It is a four part series that revolves around four friends – ordinary, everyday women. They have jobs and they work hard. They are average women with everyday issues who get swept off their feet by their heroes in the wildest ways. I got an interesting reaction from friends that I showed the cover to. Overwhelmingly women in both the US and Oz liked the fact that the woman on the front did not have the standard perky breasts. Her breasts are perceived as real and therefore a good image for a book cover. That started us on a talk about body image and perception.

I will admit I have body issues. I stood in front of a mirror in a fitting room recently and made a sacred vow that no one would ever see me naked again. I know it’s a crazy vow but it is one I plan to stick to until I find a sufficient, glorious, hot male reason not to then I will throw that vow to the wind. I am not perfect nor do I want to be and I do not expect a lover to be either. However every so often even I, who is incredibly confident in who I am, look at my flabby thighs and think oh yuck! And this is crazy as I refuse to judge anyone on their looks so why do I do it to myself? I believe there is no perfect woman or perfect man. I don’t believe one skin colour is better than another. Nor do I agree with the view that everyone of a certain height must be of a certain weight otherwise they are deemed obese. I don’t like that the media glamorizes blonde air heads or persists in air brushing out wrinkles or shaving away lumps and bumps on the photograph of a model just because that model is not perfect. Who needs perfection? What we need are real people with real thoughts and feelings. We love with our heart and mind and not our eyes alone.

So I am going to make a concerted effort not to scream if I catch a glance at my cellulite thighs or flabby arse in the mirror. Wrinkles I have and I could care less about. Scars I have but I wear them as a badge of experience. My weight fluctuates as does the smoothness of my skin. But after all I am woman, I am real and I am never going to be perfect. So why drive myself crazy?

I asked some smart women I know what they thought about body image:-
My body is something that I live in. It can be a mansion, a teepee, or even a shack. How the world perceives my body is how I perceive it. Just like a house, if I keep it pretty and in good repair it is admired. If I let it run down people cluck their tongues. My body is just like that.

Our society is so convinced that thin is perfect that even if you work out two hours a day and eat nothing but salads, people think you’re lazy and stupid if you’re two pounds overweight. And the USDA has admitted to artificially adjusting their standards so that many healthy people are now officially classed as overweight. Humans are not meant to look identical and people should get over it!

A reminder that our Emmeline, twin, peeler, zucchini missile sage will be back again Monday. If you missed the last episode go immediately to and laugh your socks off. On Monday wake up bright and early and go to and see what happens next.

Go ahead: Live with abandon. Be outrageous at any age. What are you saving your best self for?

Saturday, 28 July 2007

The thirteen commandments...

Have you read Anny’s entry in our saga of Emmeline, the twins and the peeler at - bloody hell! I almost choked on my corn chip it was so funny. I can hardly wait to see what wild ride Kelly takes us on in her episode on Monday. As you know we give the blog serial and our peelers a rest on Sunday. The batteries need recharging so they hum at the right frequency - the same with our peelers.

Amarinda’s thirteen commandments for writing romance. (Anyone can do ten)

1. Thou shall have junk food on hand when writing – this is because everyone knows that calories don’t count when you are being creative. This also applies when you break food into pieces. It causes calorie leakage so you can eat more while you type.

2. Thou shall listen to the voices in your head even if it is at three in the morning and it’s cold and you have to get out of bed and find a piece of paper and a pen to write stuff down.

3. Thou shall forgive those motorists that beep their horns at you at a green light when you are writing dialogue for they know not what you do.

4. Thou shall ignore bitchy comments made by other romance writers because who gives a rat’s arse.

5. Thou shall not make the heroine a wimp as that makes it too easy for the hero.

6. Thou shall not make the hero a complete bastard as there is no way the heroine will have sex with him unless it is to prove a point then walk away laughing.

7. Thou shall be allowed to stare at gorgeous men as you are doing it in the name of research. As for touching – that’s at your own creative discretion.

8. Thou shall drop the names of your published books into conversation…something like…"Everything was Rose Perfect because it happened Swift of Heart and I did it Because I Can as he was a Thief of Mine." It does not have to make sense and it makes people go and buy the books to work out what the hell you are babbling about or maybe just to shut you up – either way it’s a sale.

9. Thou shall have a happy ever after in your book even if you have a cold, the curse, overdue bills, the kids are sick, you have to clean, wash and iron, you hate your job or you have just broken up with the love of your life. You will get the hero and heroine together come what may. Chocolate can always be used later for medicinal purposes.

10. Thou shall treat yourself to some luxury once you’ve sent you book off to your editor as you deserve it.

11. Thou shall be allowed a moment’s disappointment if your royalty check sucks but then go out and spend it on wine and take-out because you can.

12. Thou shall not throw a hissy fit if your editor tells you that vampires from outer space, heroines having babies, green people ménages and sock puppets are no longer the hot selling genres. Move onto something that is.

13. Thou shall remain realistic and retain a sense of humour when it comes to publishing because life is short and there is no point spitting the dummy over something you can do nothing about.

Take ‘em or leave ‘em…it’s what I live by.

Hissy fit = spitting the dummy
Spitting the dummy = hissy fit.

Looking for a fun blog to check out? Head over to

Go ahead: Live with abandon. Be outrageous at any age. What are you saving your best self for?

Friday, 27 July 2007

Ask and ye shall receive...

Did you read about the man with the pulsating orange nipples of Grasshopper’s blog - What you ask? Orange nipples? Yes, that is what I said – quite loudly several times when I read it. Between Grasshopper and the Queen of Zen Anny Cook I am the only sane one in the trinity. God help us all. Anyway...when we last left our heroine she was lusting after Shade and his orange nipples. Please note that is the second last time orange nipples will be read on

Emmeline woke up shaking. The dream had seemed so real. Orange pulsating nipples? She looked over to where Shade lay sleeping, his bare chest, as normal as any mans. She had heard that some women became delusional during Khaleena due to the excess hormones charging through their bodies. Emmeline pulled out the chocolate bar and broke off a piece and popped it into her mouth. She had to get a grip. She knew the Guardians of Quadro were out to stop her getting to Rafe. She had sensed them earlier lying in wait for her and avoided their trap. By the Goddess no one would stop her claiming her man.

* * * * *

“I have come to help you,” the woman whispered softly.

Rafe turned to look at her. She was the most beautiful woman he had ever seen.
“You are a Guardian.” He was shocked to see one such as her amongst the Zucchini dealers. She shimmered with a purity that these heathens jostling each other in the dingy market place could never understand. Rafe looked around him quickly to assure himself no one listened in. “I did not think they allowed the Virginal Guardians out of the Quadro temple.”

“They do in extreme emergencies during Khaleena.” Her eyes locked on his, her meaning clear and unmistakable.

“You are not suggesting…” Sex with a temple virgin?

“I have been chosen to mate with you before Emmeline does.”

“You don’t have a peeler.” Even as inexperienced as she was surely she had to be aware of the importance of a peeler.

“A real woman doesn’t need one.” She took his hand and pulled him to her. “A real woman has other skills.”

The big boys were up from interstate today. You know – the head honchos. Except this pair don’t dress in suits, they dress casually. This instantly makes me suspicious as the big boss can never really be mates with the plebs. How do I know? Many, many years of hard work experience. Anyway they rocked in to take us to lunch to discuss work and be all friendly like.

I am not the shy, retiring type – no, please don’t be shocked – and while we were discussing work I decided to go for broke and ask for every single thing we needed, wanted, wished for and really did not need. And guess what? I got it - and even stuff I threw in as an after thought because I was on a roll. I will admit initially there were a lot of stunned mullet looks after I had calmly and politely rattled off Amarinda’s wish list. This is the usual response I get though so it did not bother me. I come from a family who believe in the ‘ask and ye shall receive’ principle or as my mother and I call it ‘what Lola wants Lola gets’ law. So I got a lot of stuff today as I believe that people never truly expect someone to ask outright for things so they are too stunned to do anything but nod…and maybe drool in extreme cases. I also managed to hammer out a very nice sick and holiday agreement for us.

So all in all, a five hour work lunch worked out very nicely for me as I got what I wanted and I only spent a couple of hours at work – bonus. And, as if the gods were truly smiling on me Skippy, my assistant, was sick so although I had to do some actual work in those two hours (how rude) it was nice not having to ascertain what mood Skippy was in – though Friday is one of her talking days. And I got a new computer in my office. That was good. Bad side is I have to now re-programme all my colours, screen savers, desktop wallpaper and favourites. I may need to ask for more money again…

Go ahead: Live with abandon. Be outrageous at any age. What are you saving your best self for?

Thursday, 26 July 2007

My mate Merv...

Freaking hell! First it was Anny and now Kelly has thrown in orange nipples to the ongoing madness of Emmeline, the twins and the peeler. I don’t normally do sanity but I feel I will have to inject some into this dramatic saga. Watch this space tomorrow.

Every night after work when I drive in Merv is sitting on the pergola *. Who is Merv? Merv is a big fat possum. How do I know his name is Merv? Well I don’t. I just call him that. He could be a she – a Mervina - but I tend to believe most females are not about to go climbing over woodwork to perch up on high of things. We have more sense - whatever the species. Anyway as I drive in I look for Merv and there he is. I like to think he is anxiously waiting there for me to return home safely each night. But I suspect it has more to do with the fact that Merv is more pissed off to see me as he knows now that the human is home and he no longer has run of the place. He has this whole look of “well bugger, you’re back.” Despite this I look forward to seeing Merv as it’s a very uncomplicated relationship. When I come home he goes and sits in the melaleuca tree and I go inside. Perfect really as I am not in the mood for anyone after work. I venture to say if George Clooney turned up at my place after work I would be say “Please go away George, I need wine, not you.” Okay…maybe I wouldn’t. George could be useful…for stuff.

Back to Merv…I did explain to him that the pest control people were coming on the weekend and that maybe he should think about making himself scarce. I feel Merv is very jaded by life experience as he looked at me as if this was all very boring and he would do as he liked. Naturally I would get a fat possum with attitude. Anyway he has been warned. Wayne the terminator is coming.

Wayne no, not his real name, is a thousand years old and the biggest gossip this side of the black stump. The first thing he always says, without fail, when he sees me is “Are you married yet?” To Wayne all women should be married. If not there is something very wrong with them. I always shake my head and say “No Wayne, alas I am still sitting dusty on the shelf.” Wayne then usually says something along the lines of “You’re a good looking woman what’s the problem?’ This is followed by “You’re not gay are you?” No, not gay just very picky and extremely difficult to deal with. Once inside my house Wayne looks around and shakes his head. “You have a lot of junk, ” he always says. This seems to explain to Wayne why no man will marry me. I am messy and collect stuff that needs to be dusted - a sure fire deterrent to any man as "men need looking after" - apparently. Why do I have Wayne come back year after year? Because he is unintentionally funny and an excellent gossip. I know wild things about people I have never met. I know who’s sleeping with whom, who bought what that they can’t afford and what job they just chucked in. I have no doubt Wayne tells people of the poor spinster author with the messy house. I must remember to give him my website address when he is here. Any publicity is good.
*pergola = patio roof

I get a quote sent to me every morning from the Oprah website…thanks Oprah. I like quotes as they can be very uplifting, incredibly true or funny. I got this quote today.
The best part of waking up? The Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine recommends first paying attention to your breath for a few minutes instead of jumping out of bed.

Oh Please! I am too busy pushing the tangled rats nest of hair from my eyes and trying not to fall on my face as I stumble outside to the kitchen to think about breathing. And who ‘jumps’ out of bed anyway? I usually roll over, swear and contemplate calling in sick. Surprisingly this only happens on a weekday…hmmm. If you are reading this…please remember to breathe.
Results on the Why did the chicken cross the road poll - as suspected you are all way too smart and went with the answer "to confuse and taunt mankind for ever more." Excellent.

Wednesday, 25 July 2007

The Wednesday Interview

And welcome to Wednesday. This week’s brilliant author is Finding Sarah’s Terry Odell. Come back next week for warrior woman Charlene Leatherman with her book Prophecy of Vithan.
Finding Sarah – The blurb
Being robbed at gunpoint wasn’t part of Sarah Tucker’s business plan. Neither was falling in love with the detective who arrived to solve the case.
For police detective Randy Detweiler, a routine robbery investigation turns into the biggest challenge of his career when he falls in love with the victim and ends up having to save more than her business.

The interview
1. What about sizzling sex scenes in your book. How hard is it to write sex and make it convincing?
I don't think it's any harder than making anything else convincing. Since I don't write erotica, and my characters are usually in the middle of some problem solving situation, they don't rush into a sexual encounter. I prefer it to develop naturally, and it might be halfway through the book, or further, before their relationship is consummated with sex. I also don't like books where they're constantly thinking about each other in erotic terms—not when they're supposed to be in danger, or dealing with some other crises. I think agent Kristen Nelson said something about how she can't accept someone breaking into a woman's bedroom at night, waking her up, and the woman immediately thinks, "Wow, he's hot!" Although I write fiction, I want the responses to any given situation to be realistic. If someone's shooting at them, they're not thinking about sex. Also, I studied a lot of biology, and there are things the body shuts down in times of stress and fear. I find it hard to go against what I know is 'right' just to add sexual tension to a scene. Of course, once the danger's gone, all bets are off!
As for the actual writing – well, I do have a very willing research partner who helps me make sure all the parts are in the right places. I think the hardest thing to get 'right' is how much each partner can actually see, both because of the light levels and the way their bodies are positioned! I've messed that up a few times. But we keep trying until we get it right.
And one thing I've learned – there's no 'generic' sex scene. What works for the characters in one book doesn't work in another. You can't just copy and paste. In Finding Sarah, I have a heroine who's been married for 5 years prior to being widowed. Sarah knows her way around a bedroom. Once she's made the mental break from her late husband, she's a very sensual partner. Randy, on the other hand, although he certainly knows what he's doing, has been totally job-oriented and sex is more of a release. So, when these two come together, Sarah takes the lead.
My daughters read my stuff. The only parts they have trouble with are the sex scenes. When I asked what I got wrong, they said, "Nothing. But you're not supposed to know that stuff. You're my mom!" Now, let me explain that they're not giggly adolescents. They're both married (one twice) and I'm pretty darn sure they've done anything my characters have.

2. Romance and the condom. How hard do you find to slip it in or on when the action is hot between characters?
I can't NOT slip it in (or on) unless there's a darn good reason. In What's in a Name? when Kelli is about to leave Blake, she spontaneously joins him in the shower. By then, they've addressed the health issues, and she's at a place in her cycle where she's confident she won't get pregnant. But they do think about it, and it's a conscious decision. Usually, the first encounter has the more explicit condom use scene, and after that, it's mentioned briefly in passing. I only 'stop' to show it if I'm doing a very detailed scene. When things are left between the lines, so are the condoms. But they're there!

3. Do you think romance just happens or do you make your characters work for it?
Lust happens. Romance has to be worked for. And, as I said above, I don't care for people who think about nothing but physical responses to each other. I've asked a lot of men what the reality of their reactions are (I have some very wonderful male friends!) and although I temper it with what a woman reader expects –let's face it; we want the heroes to respond the way we WISH men would respond—I try to avoid overdoing it. Any writer learns early on that "only trouble is interesting." If a character wants something and you give it to him, the scene is over. We all want the HEA, but it won't mean as much if the characters don't earn it. Heck, I LOVE throwing stuff at my characters. I want to test them, see what they're made of. Peel back the layers. And, as all that happens, the relationship and the romance develop.

4. What is it about your hero that makes him irresistible to women?
I write what I find irresistible! If it carries over to other women, so much the better, but I'm always writing heroes with the "I wish I had a man like that" in mind. Of course, I do have my own man, but he hasn't been put through the wringer the way my characters have. Bottom line – they would go to the ends of the earth for their women. They want them happy, and they'll put their lives on the line if it comes to that.

5. Do you think readers want to escape or do they want to identify with a character?
Both. Definitely both. We escape with a character we can identify with. A good hero and heroine will display courage, intelligence and honor. Readers want to believe that if they were in similar situations, they'd respond that way, too.

6. What do you think is the most important thing to remember when writing romance?
It's all about the characters.

7. What are you working on now?
My third Cerridwen Press novel, Starting Over, will be released in August. I've got a short story submitted to The Wild Rose Press, and a "Pollyanna Meets Delta Force" kind of novel submitted to a few agents and an editor. If that flies, I have a second one in the polishing stages. I also want to get back to Sarah's world. I've started what for me is my 'getting comfortable' chapters. Whether they stay in the manuscript or are just there for me remains to be seen. However, I'm trying something new for me—a true sequel, where my major POV characters are the same—Randy and Sarah. While this is common enough in mystery series, I'm not sure how it will go over as a romance. It might end up over the line into the mystery genre. Randy and Sarah have already had their book. Now, their relationship will continue to grow, and there will be rocky bits, but their characters are fairly well established. JD Robb does it—and very well. I don't begin to put myself in her league, but if I don't try something I haven't done before, I get bored.

Click on the cover and buy the book!

Last Week’s brilliant author – Cindy Spencer Pape and Dragon in System

Have you read today’s instalment of Emmeline, Rafe and the Zuccinhi dealers? If not there is still time. Catch up with the Tuesday edition on my blog and then jump on over to On Thursday go to
follow the adventures of Emmeline, the twin, the peelers and the Zucchini dealers.

Tuesday, 24 July 2007

Emmeline, the twin, the peeler and the chocolate...

Yes kiddies it’s time again for Auntie Amarinda to trot out her edition of Emmeline, the twin, the peeler and the chocolate. Yes, we will probably come up with a title any day now. Did you check out Kelly Kirch’s crazy chapter six on What was the girl thinking? And I cannot wait to see what madcap adventure Anny Cook sends Emmeline on in Chapter Eight on Wednesday on Those girls are mad I tell you. But sit back and relax…its Auntie Amarinda’s turn. When we left Kelly’s blog our heroine Emmeline had just pointed out to the twin the peril of coming too close to her and he wanted to know why …now read on…

“Touch me and find out.” Emmeline laughed at his stunned look. “What? Are you scared? Weren’t you the one who had delusions of tasting me? Are the poisonous hairs on my back a little too kinky for you fang boy?” She twirled the peeler in her hand casually, knowing even though he was blind to her he could still hear its deadly hum. “Only a real man can handle them.”

“Like my brother?”

“Oh yeah, now there’s a man.” Emmeline looked the twin up and down. He wasn’t bad but he just wasn’t the one. “And just because you have the equipment doesn’t mean you are a real man.”

“You are a bitch.”

“And your point is?” She pulled her goggles back on. Emmeline knew she would need them where they were going. “Follow me or stay - but I need your brother and I need him now.”

* * * * *

At the hide out of the Zucchini dealers, Rafe watched the women sort through the zucchinis. One of the dealers viewed their guest with interest.

“The women folk like the zucchinis because they’re so big, hard and long and they’re good for…cooking heh heh heh.”

“I noticed they all have peelers.” He had never seen so many women with the deadly instrument. It was enough to make any man wary.

“A woman has to protect herself even up here. Where is your woman?”

“She is coming for me.” And the thought of it chilled Rafe to the bone.

What is a peeler you ask? You will just have to keep reading. But on to other stuff…the minutiae of my life…

I gave an opinion at work today and got in trouble. The fact that I got in trouble does not bother me as I do tend to get in trouble quite a bit and it’s like water off a duck’s back. It’s the fact that I am not the shy retiring type so why ask me for an opinion when you know I will give an answer and it may not be the one you necessarily want to hear? So why ask? It’s only going to piss both of us off in the end.I am never going to be a person that agrees the emperor is clothed when he is butt ugly naked. Yes, I probably should shut up and think sycophantic thoughts but I cannot do that. It’s a case of to thine own self be fair dinkum.(true – for non Aussies.) A friend of mine read Because I Can and she said “Bloody hell, Miranda is you.” And I guess she is (apart from the sex…what is that again?) as I tend to call a spade a shovel and I am not known to sit quietly when I believe something is wrong. I believe writers tend to write what they know about unless you are like Anny Cook and you write the wild, sexy and funny Chrysanthemum – but then maybe Anny has multiple body piercing and has wild sex – what do I know? If so I am naturally jealous. Came-a-lot sounds like a fun place to visit…also exhausting. Read the book and you'll find out.

So tell me – why is it we aren’t allowed to be individuals and think for ourselves? Why can’t people have way out thoughts? How does anything every get invented or changed without them? Sure I believe in team work but why are we not supposed to step outside the team and say if we think something could be better? And don’t give me the “there is no ‘I’ in team crap.” That is just pseudo babble that someone came up with to keep everyone in their place. What if you don’t want to stay put? We cannot all follow like mindless sheep. At some stage of our lives – working or not – we have to stand up and say – “Well, no I disagree and these are the reasons why – or this is the way we can improve.” I don’t mind if someone wants to disagree with me but don’t think of going the rounds of the table with me because I dared to disagree. Ok, I am calmer now...I have bridge the built and I move on all the time remembering who pissed me off in the true Scorpio way so I can subtly torture them later when the least expect it. Plenty more trouble to get into tomorrow.

I got an email from someone I had not heard from in years. Why had they emailed me? Well they had heard on a previous work grapevine that I was getting books published. They wanted a free copy. Oh how I laughed. People are funny aren’t they? Did I send a free book? Gee, I would have liked to but I got an arm cramp.

Monday, 23 July 2007

A little light romance...

As I write this I know that Kelly Kirch is due to download the next installment of our serial blog about Emmeline, the twin, the chocolate bar and the peeler. What you ask? Chocolate? Peeler? Is Amarinda drunk? No, no alcohol in the house at the moment bar the bottle of chocolate liqueur someone gave me several Christmases ago and for some reason I just have never gotten around to drinking it. I love chocolate and I have been known to drink like a fish but I don’t know whether it’s the corny picture on the label or what but I just can’t seem to crack it open. I keep it as emergency alcohol, to be opened if all else fails. Anyway, I digress once again, but do flick over to and see what Kelly has written. I have a vague idea what it is. Like the supposed good girls we are we like to warn the person who is next to write about Emmeline and her adventures. Grasshopper informed me this morning that she may change hers ‘a bit' from what she originally sent me. Hmm…I don’t like the sound of that. Toy with me will you? I think not. I am up for any challenge. Bring it on. Mind you when you read Anny Cook on you will see that Anny started this madness with her crazy imagination. Check out her books and you'll see what I mean. I am just a sweet and innocent bystander in all this…that’s my story and I am sticking to it.

Today someone told me I should write ‘real’ books. Apparently writing romance or romantica is not real. Well of course it’s not real. Wake up and smell the coffee. We all know that. Romance books are an escape and that’s why people read them – why I read them. We all deal with real life stuff every day and sometimes it’s a bloody grind and just for an hour or so you want to read something that takes your mind off the crap you are dealing with. What’s wrong with that? That’s why people watch their favourite television shows – it’s an escape – we all have opinions about why the crew are stuck on the island in Lost but that does not mean we believe they are really there (though getting stuck on an island with Saywer would not be too hard to bear.) Romance books are like that – fantasy, romance and a dream. It’s the fact that you can zone out and not think anything but getting caught up in the romance or the passion of the moment. Of course the hero is not going to walk out of the book and sweep you off your feet - but you may already have your own real life hero/heroine and you may be living the romance or maybe he/she is just around the corner waiting for you to pass by. I reckon there is someone for everyone – the elusive one. So why not read about someone else finding 'the one' while you wait for yours to get home or waltz into your life? How does it do any harm?

And no, romance novels are not going to save the world but for one moment they may just give you a breather. There are no great answers in them. My characters are flawed and real and they don’t know what they are doing half the time themselves. In Because I Can the hero and heroine have wild sex in a lift. Okay, that may not happen all the time but what if it did? How would you react if a man was so wildly attracted to you that he had to have you then and there? What would you do if you felt the same wild attraction? Would you run into the night with a bad boy thief like Stella did in Thief of Mine just because for one wild moment you wanted to be with this man so badly that you do not care how crazy it is. That’s what romance novels are– they are ‘what if’ and ‘why not?’ Why do we have to analyze why people read certain types of books? As long as they are reading something isn’t that the most important thing? So yes, damn it, I write romance or romantica – and I make no apologies about it. Sure there is a great novel within me somewhere – it’s in everyone. But I’m not going to write it to justify myself. If I started justifying myself for that then I would have to do it for other things and that I will never do as I do not feel the need to slot into a stereotypical box of who or what I should be - bugger that for a joke.
FYI - the result of the "I really hate..." poll was decaf with traffic a close second. Caffeine rules.

Go ahead: Live with abandon. Be outrageous at any age. What are you saving your best self for?

Sunday, 22 July 2007

Sunday stuff...

Where is there the 6th edition of the chronicle of Emmeline and the man who is a twin you ask? Well it's taking a Sunday rest and the next edition will be on Monday. If you missed the last edition or have no idea what I am talking about and you have burning desire to know - check out

Every Sunday morning I wander out in my flannelette pajamas and pick up the newspaper from the front lawn - well it's not actually lawn at the moment it's more dirt because of the drought but you get my drift. I think wearing your pj’s outside on your property is socially acceptable – though I did see someone wearing them grocery shopping last Thursday night so I guess there is no hard an fast rule when it comes to pink flannelette. Any thoughts on this? Please advise.
Anyway once I have the newspaper, I settle down with my coffee to read what is going on in the world. This morning I did find out that I was not on the 100 richest people in Queensland list. What a shocker that was and I have to ask does anyone really give a rat’s arse who is the richest person? Obviously someone must as they printed it. But really it’s not going to make a lot of difference to anyone but the person who is called the richest is it? And then what do they get out of it? Okay, yes, they get money but it’s not like they can wear a badge that says “I am the richest person” – because everyone would go ‘so what’ or rob them. After flipping through the richest people and not seeing any of my friends either, I took a cursory look at politics - the latest ‘pick me and I’ll be the bestest at running the country’ contest, then I avoided the sports pages because other than men in short shorts who cares and finally I flipped through for the horoscope as that is vitally important. There was a moment of panic when I could not find it. How can I be expected to start the day without it for god sake? When I found and read Scorpio, I discarded it immediately as it was boring and not what I wanted to hear. I prefer to read the Scorpios will win much money and will never have to work again. I don’t want to read about adversity and perseverance as they just suck. I need to hear about the mystery man who will sweep me off my feet and lavish gifts upon me as we travel the world. Maybe next Sunday.

I drove up to the Sunshine Coast, home of the late Steve Irwin. There is still a huge billboard with his face on the side of the road advertising Australia Zoo. I admire anyone who has great passion – Steve had in bucket loads. Every time I see that sign I tell myself I need to live more like I mean it and to be more passionate about the important things. RIP Steve. Speaking of passion and important things, as I was driving it started to rain. I was stunned. Rain. Wet Stuff from the sky. Bloody hell, who knew? I was momentarily confused but I managed to remember where my windscreen wipers were. Rain is an exciting event at the moment. People talk about it for days. Unfortunately – an hour away in my own home town of Brisvegas it did not rain. Fickle stuff rain. But I did see it and that alone made me happy and hope springs if I can just get me that rainwater tank...

When I arrived back from the Sunshine Coast I knew I had to do some exercise. No, I am not and never will be an exercise junkie. I hate, loathe and despise it but I have lost a lot of weight and the only damn way to keep it off is exercise and that sucks badly. Added to that I had consumed quite a bit of crap this weekend so after much swearing I knuckled down to exercise. I have an exercise bike, stepper and other torture equipment at home. I can only exercise if I watch television as it takes my mind off the what I am putting myself through. In lieu of nothing to watch on TV – no, I don’t have cable – yes how dreadful and backward I am – I put on a video – yes I still have a VCR. Why – because. Anyway I rifled through my selection of old favourite movies and I came across Thoroughly Modern Millie. If you haven’t seen it – see it. It’s romantic, slapstick that is funny and innocent. Anyway I taped it years ago. As I was sweating away, I realized I had taped it late 1980-early 1990’s. Bloody hell! The commercials! Didn’t we wear some horrible clothes in that period? Waist bands were high, hairstyles were big and poofy and we seemed to like plaid a lot. I had read just recently that the 90’s look is coming back. Why don’t we learn anything when it comes to fashion and more importantly why do so call fashionistas call the shots and make people wear such ugly crap? I don’t follow fashion. I wear what is comfortable and suits me. I don’t need some scrawny blonde haired airhead with a toy dog in her handbag dictating trends.

So that was my Sunday. I am going to write a bit and then crawl into bed so I get a good sleep and I am all ready and refreshed for another exciting Monday morning at work…okay, that did not sound sincere but I will work on it. Should have it down pat by Friday afternoon.

Saturday, 21 July 2007

Patience thy name is not Amarinda

Holy snapping ducks! Have you checked out our ongoing serial about Emmeline and the man who has chocolate in his hands, attitude issues and now has a twin brother no one except me a knew about? What am I talking about? Why go to author Anny Cook’s blog and see how she deals with my surprise advent of a twin brother. Got to say Anny I am pleased you got that peeler and fangs into the story. It was beginning to get worried that you might be slipping. Then jump over to author Kelly Kirch’s blog - and read her plans for revenge when she puts her own spin on the story on Monday. Lots of luck with that one Grasshopper. Please note we will not accept excuses like the dog ate your homework. I eagerly await my turn Tuesday. Bring it on.
I have been awaiting a rain water tank for a couple of months now. Not an unusual occurrence in Brisvegas at the moment as every second person is waiting the arrival of a rain water tank. Why? Because we have no rain. Why get a rain water tank? Well to put rain in of course. You’re thinking - what? Has the Jones girl lost the plot? Yes, but that was years ago and I no longer worry about being plot-less – now I just wing it. Anyway, we are all putting in rain water tanks in the hope that it will actually rain and then we can use some of that rain water on gardens, cars or if push comes to shove – to drink. We are in a drought at the moment and the government is encouraging everyone to save water. Four minute showers, level 5 water restrictions and trying to make people to use no more than 140 litres of water a day. We are not in panic mood as we are Aussies and we do not panic. We have been through all this before. There is a famous Aussie poem called My Country that Dorothea McKellar wrote in 1904 – see I was awake a school. I only zoned out in Math…oh and Science...and I rarely turned up for sport and I sucked at geography but other than that I was the ideal student. Part of the poem is…
I love a sunburnt country,
A land of sweeping plains,
Of rugged mountain ranges,
Of droughts and flooding rains.
I love her far horizons,I love her jewel-sea,
Her beauty and her terror
The wide brown land for me!
That’s Australia – beautiful, terrifying, dry and flooded. A land of extremes. And yes, maybe I'll bung on a limerick tomorrow if I can think of a clean one. Anyway I digress as I always do - I had a phone call today asking me did I really want the ‘storm blue’ colour rain water tank that I ordered. Why yes, that’s why I picked the colour. I was told no one ever chooses this colour - confirmation again that I am indeed a little bit different. But if no one ever picks that colour why have it on the colour chart I asked? The man just sighed as if he had been through this conversation with many women before and he knew it was pointless trying to explain it. Lets face it, straight men don't understand colour. The bottom line was I could have 'storm blue' in 3 months or get another coloured tank in two weeks. Being the impatient woman I am I went for door number two. The colour options I could have in two weeks? Mist Green or Heritage Red – or after viewing the last colour I would think Bloodbath Red would be a more appropriate name. Some definite bad ju-ju having having a bleeding tank attached to your house. Anyway I drove the man on the phone insane for a bit and ended up getting a bigger rain water tank in mist green and $100 knocked off the original price. Why? Because he wanted to shut me up and it was easier to give me stuff than let me prattle on about the dreadful inconvenience caused to me. I actually enjoy being annoying. Try it. People will just give you stuff to shut you up. So in two weeks I will have a rain water tank. I firmly believe in two weeks it will rain. If not, it will be a very large mist green garden ornament that will be a bugger to mow around.
I am off to the Sunshine Coast tomorrow for the day. This is a still fairly un-commercialized area about an hour from Brisvegas. It has sand, sun and surf. I don't do any of those as I am more of a sit on the balcony and drink wine as I watch the waves crash on the beach type of person. Nature works for me at a distance. This will be followed by wandering off to the local markets buying stuff I don’t need. I hope your Sunday is as pleasant. And Kelly? Get writing girl.
Go ahead: Live with abandon. Be outrageous at any age. What are you saving your best self for?

Friday, 20 July 2007

Thief of Mine Released today!!

Let the pigeons loose! Thief of Mine – Released today!! Click on the cover and check it out.
Thief of Mine - the blurb...
It's not unusual for the bride to have sex on her wedding day. But when the bride is begging for another man to take her hard and fast in front of a startled bridesmaid that's unusual. Not that Stella Rowallan wanted to watch. She walked in on it and now she can't walk out. The man taking the bride is bad, wild and hot. Stella knows she should be appalled. But she's not. She wants him. What is it with the bad boys that make them so damn good?
But all bad boys have a past and Kit Kincaid is no different. He is a self confessed thief who likes to have sex in wild, daring places. And Stella Rowallan is just his type of woman - shockable yet willing. But he has a problem. A freaky witch woman and her followers are chasing him for a stolen stone idol. Kit has it and he plans to sell it. Can he have both Stella and the idol or does something have to give?

After the fanfare of getting Thief of Mine released I know you are wondering how can I possibly top that? Well I can...sort of. I am getting a new washing machine delivered tomorrow morning. Yes, much excitement - ok it's not but I have a pile of washing that has grown to Everest proportions and as the damn washing pixies won't do it, I have to. Damn pixies. But you know what it? I am lucky. No, not that I get to do laundry- that's just bloody boring. The thing is at least I can buy a washing machine – a lot of people can’t. I was talking to a work colleague, in another country, that I talk to everyday, occasionally about work stuff but mainly we just gossip. I love her accent when she swears. All her swear words come as as two syllables i.e. F*** and then 'ed'. Anyway she cannot afford either a washing machine or a fridge. Why? Because their standard of living is so different to ours. I believe it's always good to have a reality check to realize how lucky some of us are and what we take for granted. I also sponsor a child in Bangladesh – well she is a teenager now. Sponsoring is a big reality check. I remember coming home one night after what I considered a crap day at work to find a letter from her telling me how excited she was that she got a chicken to look after. This child has nothing material in her life and a chicken made her day. So I remind myself of that when I start to bitch and moan. Yes, I will still bitch and moan but with the realization that I am doing okay all things considered.

Okay off the soapbox. The work day finished on a high. The upper level manager (I am lower level management but much more attractive) came in and said "We can all leave early today". I was standing up with my handbag in my hand and walking to the door on the word ‘leave.’ Skippy, my morose assistant announced that she would stay until the ‘proper leaving time’ as she ‘knew someone would need her.’ No she’s not a superhero who needs to stay by the batphone. She just lives by an iron set of self inflicted rules whereas I believe in taking every blessed opportunity to skive off early. As I rushed past the sanctimonious Skippy I waved as even the anally retentive need recognition. Yes, I am a half-arsed boss. But on the bright side I am very good to myself. I stopped on the way home and bought myself a bottle of champagne in recognition of this.

And now, without further ado - the much anticipated 4th instalment of the continuing adventures of Emmeline and the man was the ‘thing’ in his hands...(sorry Anny. I did change the ending. Yes, I am very very naughty.)

“You bastard,” Emmeline cursed softly. He knew how badly she needed what he held in his hands. Her mouth craved the hard smooth feel of it against her lips. She wanted to suck it slowly inside and savor the taste of it on her tongue. She ripped the goggles off her head and looked at him. He smiled knowingly. She hated the fact that he thought he had this power over her. “You’re delusional. I would never let you touch me let alone taste me and the only time I ever sighed your name was through sheer and utter boredom.” Emmeline pointed her laser saber at him. “You’re cute but not as cute as your twin brother.” She saw the muscle in his jaw jump with anger. “Now give me that damn chocolate bar or I will deny you the one the thing you desire most.”
The man laughed and shook his head. “You do that and I'll make sure you never know where I have imprisoned my twin brother."

Check out Anny’s insightful and most likely crazy response Saturday on - Missed reading a bit? Check out Kelly on

By the way…did I mention I have a book released today? Thief of Mine – bad boy meets occasionally good girl – take a walk on the wild side.

Poll results for A challenge is...most popular was "A pain in the arse when you are busy doing other stuff." Clearly smart and attractive people read this blog.

Thursday, 19 July 2007

Lust in Time...

Please take a squiz at my latest cover. Click on the cover and it will take you to where you can read all about Lust in Time. Lust and Time – two things we both crave and need.

Check out the latest in our blog serial on - Did you miss part two yesterday? Don’t worry you’re in luck. Head over to and have a read.

I have been very busy at work today. Yes, I actually did a bit of the stuff I am paid for but mainly I did what are called FLE’s. I am not one hundred percent sure what FLE stands for. Initials in general annoy me. Why can’t we just speak the words? Anyway when FLE’s land in your inbox from your editor you need to get your finger out and get onto them PDQ (pretty damn quick – end of initials for today OK?) My book Thief of Mine is released 20th July. Before a book is released it goes through the last stage of corrections. This is where someone goes through with a fine tooth comb and says things like “What the bloody hell is she talking about?” or “That makes no sense at all.” My biggest form of corrections? I speak fluent Aussie and non-Aussies don’t always understand what we antipodeans are spruiking. For example – if I said someone was talking “ninety to the dozen” would you know what I meant? Or If I said “he had tickets on himself?” Or what about a “wheelie bin?” Or if I said someone had gone off to their “bolt hole?” These were corrections I had to make and once I got these Aussie words into generic non-Aussie terms everything was beaut mate and no worries. Crikey my editor is a good sheila and deserves a coldie and a Tim Tam after that.

Once I finished FLE’s, my dear friend Ethel messaged me on my mobile phone to tell me that it was 3pm and that she was home from work and already in her flanno shirt and trackie dacks having a glass of wine. “Bitch,” I messaged back. She replied that she would have 17 glasses of wine for me. Always the caring type Ethel. Then I got a text message from Svetlana who is on hols in Europe. I don’t know whether you remember or know but Svetlana was terribly worried about traveling overseas not because of terrorists but because she may not be able to get oyster sauce. Her message said she had heard it been really cold here. That was followed by “ha ha it’s really hot in Europe so suck eggs.” I seem to attract the trashiest bags as friends.

I ended the day at work by getting in trouble. No, not because they found out I write books at work but because a twit of work colleague of mine accidentally forwarded on something I said in an email about the incompetence of another area. You guessed it he forwarded it on to the incompetent area to find out why he could not get what he wanted done. He then realized what a dipstick he had been and then he rang me over and over all afternoon to apologize as we both knew I was in a spot of trouble. Yes, yes we all know work email is for professional use and personal opinions should not be written down…ydah ydah ydah. So the big boss called, as I knew he would, and I said yes it had happened and I take full responsibility. I also added that I stood by every word I wrote - nail your colours to the mast head I say. I find in situations like this if you admit it openly and first then they have nowhere to go with it. I even said that I would be happy to write an email of apology which I did. I worked for a telephone company for 13 very long years. I can write and give a sincere apology without blinking an eye or meaning a word of it. Skippy, my assistant, was secretly disappointed I did not get my arse kicked. Skippy has much to learn.

Amarinda glossary

Ninety to the dozen – talking fast and furious
Tickets on himself – prized himself quite highly
Wheelie bin – Big Trash can on wheels that the garbos (garbologists) pick up trash day
Bolt hole – home, a place to escape to
Flanno shirt – flannelette shirt
Trackie dacks – track suits pants
spruiking (saying).
Cobber – friend
Beaut – great
Crikey - wow
Tim Tam – the food of the gods
Hols - Holidays
Suck eggs - suffer
Trashy bags – loud, proud women with attitude
Dipstick – nitwit, idiot, fool
Go ahead: Live with abandon. Be outrageous at any age. What are you saving your best self for?

Wednesday, 18 July 2007

The Wednesday Interview

**Remember to read part two of our serial on and part three tomorrow on
Ah Wednesday once more – hump day – no that that hump…get over today and there is only 2 more days to the weekend – woo hoo!
The brilliant author for this Wednesday is Dragon in the System author Cindy Spencer Pape. Be here next week for Finding Sarah author Terry Odell

Dragon in the System – the blurb:-

Computer science professor Eric Gordon has been asked to find the hacker responsible for a virus that is embezzling from University accounts. When his investigations indicate that some sort of large reptile may be living in the steam tunnels under campus, he turns to biology professor Lori Tremain for help. Lori’s life is crazy with her tenure review looming, but she’s too curious and attracted to turn down Eric’s request. Together, Lori and Eric start to uncover things that their scientific minds can barely imagine. Can they find the thief and still find time to fall in love? Is everything on, and under, campus what it appears? Or could there truly be a dragon in the system?
The Interview

1. You have some sizzling sex scenes in your book. How hard is it to write sex and make it convincing?
You think so? Cool. I just stick my tongue firmly in my cheek and do it. I find if you treat it as just fun, it’s a lot easier. And yes, I’m talking about writing, not the act itself.

2. Romance and the condom. How hard do you find to slip it in or on when the action is hot between characters?
Nah, I don’t find it awkward at all. It’s just part of the action. Or it isn’t. You can bet if I don’t mention it, it’s going to be an issue.

3. Do you think romance just happens or do you make your characters work for it?
Depends on the character and the situation. To make a story out of it they’re going to have to work but the spark and the attraction are usually there from the beginning.

4. What is it about your hero that makes him irresistible to women?
Irresistible? We’re talking a bout Eric? From Dragon in the System? A lot of women wouldn’t find him irresistible at all. He’s an absent minded geek in glasses. He just happens to be perfect for Lori. That’s the key. My characters are never perfect, but they’re always perfect for each other.
***Amarinda – I have read Dragon in the System and I have to disagree about Eric…a lot of women would find him irresistible…it’s what happens when the glasses come off…

5. Do you think readers want to escape or do they want to identify with a character?
Can’t you do both? I do. All the time.

6. What do you think is the most important thing to remember when writing romance?
The HEA is vital. Also, a good story has to have emotion, it has to be intense in spots and fun in others, and I have to LIKE the characters without making it too easy for them to get together.

7. What are you working on now?
The third book in my cowboy series for The Wild Rose Press and another Quickie for Ellora’s Cave. I’ve got a mini-series in the works for the 2008 gemstone theme. I’ve also got a collaboration project going with another EC author, so I’m plenty busy this summer.

Thanks so much Amarinda for having me here. It’s been fun chatting like this!
***Amarinda note - always a pip talking to you Dragon Lady
****Click on the cover and buy the book!*****

Last week’s brilliant author – Anny Cook – Dancer’s Delight

Tuesday, 17 July 2007

Because I Can...

Emmeline licked her lips as she watched the tall, dark haired man with interest. She knew there was no way he could see her as she had hidden herself well. This was the opportunity she had been waiting for. All she had to do was wait and watch and then make her move. It certainly wasn’t a chore to watch him. He was stunning with his long dark hair, lean hard body and sexy eyes focused on the task before him. She looked at his large supple hands as he struggled to pull something free. What was it? Emmeline’s eyes opened wide with surprise. She had never seen one so big. How the hell was she going to deal with that?
….To be continued Wednesday on -

I ventured to the hardware store this morning before work in search of tap washers and large bolts (yes, wildly exciting stuff) The hardware store I go to is in a huge barn like place with hardware as far as the eye can see. All the staff are incredibly helpful and perky which is good as I like to be able annoy people with questions. Although I can generally turn my hand to most things I am a great believer in asking for advice especially when I know there is a fair to average chance I will stuff something up. I like to believe I know everything but when it comes to male dominated fields like hardware I don’t. I absolutely believe in equality of the sexes and that either sex can do whatever they want to or believe that can do. In saying that there are things I can do and will not do. Things like change tires. Why? Because I don’t want to as I know a man can do it a lot quicker and honestly why would I expend energy doing it? I also am not averse to playing the dumb helpless female if it means a man will rush in and do something that I don’t want to do. Manipulative? No, I don’t believe so. I think it’s more utilizing true female power. Why dirty my hands doing something when I can flutter my eyelashes and get it done? Bad Amarinda...

Anyway, I wandered into the hardware store with a couple of old tap washers and old nuts and bolts to match up to purchase new counterparts. I did my helpless female routine and came out with a bunch a free stuff - including what I went in for. Why? Because people, in this case men, love to provide advice and assistance. My mother used to call it the “Blanche Du Bois – I’ve always been accustomed to the kindness of strangers approach.” And why not as no one gets hurt and people feel good when they help. So you could say I was providing a service for people to show their skills and feel good about themselves.

As I left the hardware store, I passed by a quintessential Aussie icon. The Sausage Sizzle. Do they have them where you live? Usually these icons are run by a charities. The good old Sausage Sizzle is big business at the hardware stores. I don’t know what it is but people are compelled to buy a sausage on a slice of bread with onions smothered over the top. Stick your caviar in your ear and give us a greasy sausage on white bread – ah the simple pleasures of life…
For those of you who asked - the results for last two polls were:-
1. Question: What was the worst pick up line ever? Result - they all scored evenly which means we are all smart, capable woman who are a wake up to every line a man can throw at us. Maybe, just a crazy thought, the truth might be worth a shot...hmmm?
2. Question: Can you get there from here? Result - as expected most people went for the existential answer, and my personal favourite "how long is a piece of string." Thank you for being pervserse.

Monday, 16 July 2007

Amarinda facts...

I walked into work this working with a bucket of coffee in my gloved hand (arse freezing cold in Brisvegas at the moment) to find once again Skippy, my assistant, is not talking to me (no big surprise as she does not talk on a Monday) and that 57 work emails about god knows what awaited me as well as half a dozen phone messages about a bunch of stuff that seemed all too hard for a Monday - so same old same old for a Monday for me. So in lieu of nothing else exciting happening, I thought I would share some little known Amarinda facts – yes, I know you are riveted or at least try to pretend to be.

I cannot sing worth a damn but that does not stop me from singing really loud and out of tune whenever I want to – why? Because I can. I can dance as my mother insisted on dragging my brother and I to dance lessons (waltz, rumba etc) when we were ten years old. At the time it was torturous and I did not believe mum when she said that knowing how to dance would be useful in years to come but as usual mum knew everything. I did learn later that there is nothing like plastering yourself up against a hard male body and waltzing slowly and well…but that’s another story. What else? I can balance a pencil on my nose when bored (acquired this talent in high school) I can give the Vulcan hand salute (You never know when you will meet a Vulcan), I can read Tarot (either correctly or according to my mood) but I cannot whistle due to having braces as a teenager – but I do have perfect teeth (note to Kelly K– ha!) I am also quite the home renovator except for that one time I broke and almost sliced my big toe off – but on the bright side I did use that story in my first book Rose Perfect and the blood stain on the cement floor of the garage is most impressive and it freaks people out.

I hate, loathe and despise exercise yet I haul my arse out of bed every morning to do it in an effort to keep my weight in some sort of vague order. I am not looking for perfection, I just want to keep fitting into my jeans. I like to box. I find smacking a punching bag quite refreshing. I have been told I am very scary which is excellent –as this is exactly the look I am going for. I am a Scorpio - cross me at your own peril – hence the scariness. I am bossy and perverse but I am woman so I make no apologies. I mainline strawberry bubble gum when really pissed off or stressed so stay away if I am blowing big pink bubbles(my heroine in Last Man Standing does the same). As for writing books – I believe anyone can write them if they want to and that’s the big thing – wanting to. Everyone has life experience it’s just whether you are committed or crazy enough to write it down and send it off to a publisher. So if you want to write – write.

So what does this all mean? Nothing just means Monday was a loooooong working day and thank god or whomever it is over.

Swift of Heart - the blurb
When Stephanie Hart opens her front door to find long lost love Mackinley Swift on her doorstep so many thoughts rush through her mind. Anger, love and an overwhelming urge to slap him then eat a chocolate bar. Here is the man who taught her to love, to want and to need then he walked out on her without a word. Now Mac’s back, a year later, telling her he’s been away fighting a war in another dimension. Yeah, right, whatever. Stephanie is simply not that stupid.

Mac knows he has the fight of his life on his hands to convince the woman he loves that he had no choice when duty called him back to fight a war against his country’s old enemy. He did not want to go. Duty to his country called him home. But love has brought him back to Stephanie Hart. How hard could it be to convince her that they are meant to be together?

However an old enemy is watching the lover’s reunion. He hates Mackinley Swift for killing his brother. He has every intention of making him suffer. The woman Swift loves is the means to do it. Hurt the woman, hurt the man.