Sunday, July 29, 2012

Six Sentences From Detention

My post is late this week because I had an editing deadline that I worked on exclusively until last night. I guess my brain was just too fried to remember to schedule my Six Sunday post. I thought about punishing myself ala Dobby the House Elf, but I decided my bones are probably too brittle for anything like that.

So I'm not allowing myself to use any photos, and I chose six sentences from a scene in Symmetry that features my heroine's mother in all her condescending, disapproving glory. Just imagine that she's looking down her aristocratic nose at me as well as at Jess.

This scene takes place when Jess's mother shows up from out of town for an unexpected visit. Jess has just told her that Lee moved out, and her mother automatically assumes it was his by his choice, which makes Jess laugh so bitterly that she spills her coffee.

“I fail to see anything remotely humorous about this, Jessica Elaine. Have you taken leave of your senses?”

“Yes, that’s it, Mother.” Jess took a napkin from the apple-shaped holder in the center of the table and blotted the spilled coffee. “Lee left me because I’m insane. He’s probably afraid I’ll murder him in his sleep or—even worse—that I might pull out his hair and make everyone think he has male pattern baldness.”

You can buy you own copy of Symmetry here. And please also check out the other Six Sentencers.

Okay, it's back to detention for me now. See you next Sunday on time, I promise!

~Stay true to yourself and your dreams will come true.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Hands Down and Heads Up!

Last Sunday I promised to explain what I meant by the "hair pulling" reference in my description of Symmetry. Since I'm on vacay this week visiting my step-daughters, (one of whom is the beautiful redhead on the cover of Symmetry) I'm being lazy and letting an excerpt from one of my reviews do it for me. This is from Julie's review on the Girls Just Reading blog:

"What I enjoyed most was Jess's journey to figuring out why she liked to pull out her hair, strand by strand. This leads her to a self-diagnosis of trichotillomania or TTM for short. She begins to try to understand the triggers for this and takes actions to stop. I also liked how she developed a relationship with a young girl named Cara who did not have the support of her family in treating this disease. As a psychology major, I found it extremely interesting that this is a physical disease and not a mental illness. I can see why it would be misdiagnosed a lot of the time. I liked how this also brought her closer to her younger sister-in-law Lexie, and how she was able to help Lexie with her own issues with OCD.

Normally, I would think that authors would have to do a lot of research on a disease like TTM, but not Ms. Scarbrough. For her this was a personal novel because she deals with TTM herself. I always like it when authors use a subject matter they know personally as a source of inspiration for a character. I have a feeling that Jessica is a lot like Joyce in her way of dealing with TTM."

So there it is. I have trichotillomania. The six sentences I chose for this week come from the book's dedication and from the author's note at the end, and they explain why I wrote it.

This book is dedicated to all the people suffering alone who don't even know that what they do has a name. You are not defective, damaged, or mentally ill, and you are worthy of love and understanding.

I’ve often been asked why I decided to include a topic like hair-pulling in a novel instead of telling my own story about it in a book of non-fiction. The answer to that is twofold. First, I have TTM only to the degree that Jess has it, so it’s not a major problem for me—certainly not interesting enough for an entire book about it. Second, I figured the only people who read non-fiction books about TTM are people who already know what it is, and my goal is to raise awareness in the rest of the population.

See, I always knew there had to be a reason God gave me both the ability to write and enough hair for three people!

You can buy you own copy of Symmetry here. And please also check out the other Six Sentencers.

~Stay true to yourself and your dreams will come true!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

My Weakness For Obnoxious Pretty Boys

It's Six Sentence Sunday and time to introduce the characters in my third book, Symmetry. Here's a short synopsis to get things started.

When Jessica Cassady calls her husband's hotel room in the middle of the night, a woman's sleepy voice answers the phone. Lee swears things aren't what they seem, but Jess still kicks him out. As if that's not enough to deal with, she realizes that her hair pulling is more than just a nervous habit. Sure, Lee makes her want to pull her hair out, but this is ridiculous.

While Lee tries to win her back, things get even more complicated when Jess runs into Noah Hamilton, a sweet, unassuming history teacher from her past. Her attraction to him makes her wonder if—as her best friend Deb loves to tell her—she should forego the beefcake brigade and give the sensitive type a try. Sparks fly as these two polar opposites on the testosterone scale compete for Jess's affection. Will she be able to find her emotional center, decide which man is right for her, and finally achieve the symmetry she craves in every aspect of her life?

I'll explain more about the hair pulling next Sunday. For now, here's six sentences to introduce Jess's dilemma.

Jess always woke a second before she could complete the castration. Curses, foiled again.

She snuggled against the body pillow occupying Lee's place beside her in bed and got an indignant rowl from the Siamese cat curled up there, and she smiled at the thought of what Lee would say about letting Ming sleep with her. Maybe she’d tell him he’d been replaced by his feline nemesis when she saw him at the meeting later that morning.

She fell asleep reminding herself of how much better off she was without her two-timing, cat-hating, conceited jerk of a husband, and she dreamed he made love to her on the conference table at work, castration the furthest thing from her mind.

God, she hated him.

For some reason, most men don't seem to like that first sentence. Go figure!

You can buy you own copy of Symmetry here. And please also check out the other Six Sentencers. There's something for everybody among these talented writers!

~Stay true to yourself and your dreams will come true!

Sunday, July 08, 2012

Steamy Sunday

One last post about Jaycee and Bud in Different Roads, then on to my third book, Symmetry.

I chose these six sentences for two reasons. 1) To show the passion that drew them together in the first place and binds them despite all their fighting. 2) To show everyone that my books contain more than just stormy relationships and emotion-filled scenes. The truth is my heroines are all pretty much hot-to-trot like a certain redheaded author who created them, but only with that one special guy. And I can assure you that these scenes are thoroughly researched and factually accurate.

“We were made for each other, Jaycee. Don’t ever doubt it, and don’t ever forget that you’re mine.”

She pulled him deeper still and begged him never to stop. He did his best to comply, but he finally collapsed in her arms and fell asleep still inside her.

Jaycee lay motionless, afraid to breathe because she didn’t want to wake him and have to let him go. She marveled at how perfectly they fit together that way and how she barely felt the weight of his body, and she decided it was because they were so much stronger together than either of them was alone.

I tried to pick a passage that was steamy but not too much for a Sunday morning coffee read. If you like more delicious details in your love scenes, there are plenty of those in Different Roads. Please also check out the other Six Sentencers, especially my friends Angela Quarles and Stephanie Lawton.

~Stay true to yourself and your dreams will come true!

Sunday, July 01, 2012

Storm Warning

Six more sentences this week to show why Jaycee stays with Bud even though he frequently gets himself confused with the big yellow thing in the sky upon which all life depends, and they fight more than Walmart shoppers at a Black Friday sale.

This scene takes place while they're in college and Bud takes Jaycee home with him to meet his wealthy family. He argues with his dad about Jaycee then foolishly takes his bad mood out on her—something you should do only if you have a death wish. She tells him she'll walk the 200 miles back to school before she'll let him treat her like shit or wait around for him to start beating on her.

He walked to the doorway and she thought for a second he was leaving, but he only closed the door and came back across the room to put his arms around her. She resisted even though she wanted him to hold her more than anything in the world at that moment, then she gave up and leaned wearily against him. She always felt so tired when her anger subsided—maybe that was why she always held on to it longer than she should.

“I’d never hit you, Jaycee. I might be an asshole with a lousy temper and a big mouth, and I know I say stupid things when I get mad, but I’m not your father, and I swear to God I’d cut off my arms before I’d ever hurt you.”

She thought maybe she had wanted to hear those words from him even more than she wanted to hear him say he loved her.

So, yeah. Bud's not always the brightest light in the ball park, but his arms are Jaycee's safe harbor. Of course, they have to weather a lot more storms before she believes it.

You can read how they find their way here. Please also check out the other Six Sentencers, especially my friends Angela Quarles and Stephanie Lawton.

~Stay true to yourself and your dreams will come true!