Thursday, November 29, 2007


My story "If I Was A Rich Girl" was published in the October issue of True Love.

(I would have posted this sooner, but True Love no longer appears on local newsstands and my contributor copy just arrived in the mail.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007


I was away from home for Thanksgiving and returned home to find a contract for a confession, my 38th acceptance of the year.

Monday, November 19, 2007


My story "All I Want For Christmas Is Mr. Right!" appears in the December issue of True Love.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Character Match

Following my divorce earlier this year, I joined, an Internet dating site. While I've met some nice women and have had some interesting dates, I don't plan to share details from my dating adventures.

On the other hand, I do want to share a tip for those of you who struggle with character creation and development: Join and start reading member profiles.

Sure, you'll find basic info--height, body type, hair color, eye color, and so on--but the best material is contained in the paragraphs of self-desciption each member writes. That's where you learn characterization.

Pick one, any one, and read it closely. Is the author's profile brief and to the point, or does it run for multiple paragraphs? Does the author describe herself, or does she describe her "perfect" match? Does the author write in complete, grammatically correct sentences, or are words misspelled and punctuation applied randomly? Does the author reveal something about past hurts (you may be surprised by the number of women seeking an "honest" man), or about future goals? What's the tone--serious, funny, or sad? What does the author say and what else is implied?

You may not discover the love of your life on, but you can certainly find enough characters to populate your fiction.

If you're an unmarried writer struggling with characterization in your short stories and novels, try

But if you're a married writer, no amount of fast-talking will make your spouse believe that you joined for "research." And if you can't convince your spouse, you might need to use that membership for more than just research...

Saturday, November 03, 2007

I write like a girl

Fellow confession writer Roberta Beach Jacobson posted a link to The Gender Genie (, a program that will examine a piece of writing and determine if it had a male or a female author.

For fun, I tested three confessions and the program thought they were written by a female. That's good, I thought, because they're supposed to be!

Then I tested two hardboiled pieces of crime fiction--violent, sexual, as masculine as I get. The program thought they were also written by a female.

Maybe my crime fiction isn't as hardboiled as I thought it was. Maybe I should become a florist...

Friday, November 02, 2007

37 / 1,100

I received a contract in today's mail, my 37th acceptance of the year, which puts me behind my goal of one acceptance each week. I'm 37 acceptances for 44 weeks, well behind the blistering pace I set in the previous five years (63 acceptances in 2002, 55 in 2003, 75 in 2004, 57 in 2005, and 66 in 2006).

On the other hand, if my records are accurate, this is my 1,100th acceptance.