Fun Television equals #LethalWeapon

I’ve always been a big fan of action movies with a sense of humor. Beverly Hills Cops, Die Hard, Red, Lethal Weapon (the movie) are just a few that I could watch over and over again, never getting tired of them.

I was very excited to start to watching the show Lethal Weapon, based on the movie. First, I think the casting of the show was excellent. Damon Wayans and Clayne Crawford have great chemistry and the rest of cast complement them quite well.

I really enjoy the show. I think it has just the right blend of action, humor, and serious material that I find myself wanting to spend more time with these characters, perhaps more so than in the movies, wishing I had saved up the first season so I could binge and not have to wait another week for a new episode.

This morning, I watched the latest episode and I won’t ruin it for you, but watching the character arc for Riggs is interesting and this episode, the ending of the episode, was very insightful into this complex man who struggles with day to day living. This show has me on the edge of my seat, laughing, and crying all in less than an hour. It really is a fun show. It might not be the best show on TV, but it is one of my favorites.

The unexpected #murder…

The theme here is where there is murder…there is love…

I know. Odd, but in my fictional world, its a reality. But sometimes a murder or death in a book isn’t what I had planned. Wasn’t in the plot, but becomes a moral imperative.

The first time this happened was in Rekindled. When Kaylee returned home, her father hadn’t been murdered and the opening scene wasn’t her standing over his dead body and her ex-husband, Blaine, the Assistance Chief of Police isn’t about to arrest her…nope.

I wrote this book during #NANOWRIMO (National Novel Writing Month) and when I hit 50k words at the end of the month I went, huh, my heroine could have left at any time and there was no reason for my hero to even have anything to do with her…no conflict. Bummer. Hate it when that happens.

I was ready to send the manuscript to the shredder when it hit me: What if the one person who had offered to help her out of her sticky situation was now dead and she was the best suspect?” I didn’t expect there to be a murder in Rekindled.

My writing process has changed over the years. I’m pretty much a plotter with closet case tendencies to pants my way through it. Meaning, I usually  know the end, its a matter of figuring out how to get there. But every single time I write a book, something very unexpected thing happens. I was a little shocked at who ‘done it’ when I finished the draft of To Protect His Own (available for pre-order and also you can enter to win a free Print copy at Goodreads!)

Now that the draft of that book is done, I’m on to number 6 in the New York State Trooper Series. It has no title right now. Just “Josh’s Story”. Interesting thing though, the heroine isn’t who she says she is which puts our State Trooper in a very compromising situation and as of right now, no murder. But lets where where the draft takes me… Also, I could use title help, so feel free to toss some out there. The basic premise is: What if the woman you’re sleeping was hired to ruin your career and reputation?

That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!

Bad first dates that end up in happily-ever-after…

The other day I was talking with a friend who married a guy I knew from HS. She’d been reading my books and asked why I wrote about Troopers. I didn’t know her in HS. She was a grade behind me. I knew of her, but not sure we ever spent any time together. The guy she married was a friend of mine. Nice guy. They have been together since like right out of HS. She and I chatted for a while and we’re both so lucky to have great hubbies.

Somehow we got on the topic of first dates. I laughed and told her my first with my husband was the WORST date I’d ever been on. She came back with “couldn’t have been that bad.” Then I told her the story and she said, something to the effect of “well, that was bad.” What’s really funny to me was I got home that night and swore I’d never go out with him again…but I went out with him the very next night. Something about it him. Of course, I knew I had a keeper when he bought me a washer and dryer in our first apartment because all I did was bitch about going to the laundry mat. It was our first anniversary present. I thought it was sweet.

So, want the story?

It’s Valentine’s Day 1985. I’d been friends with this guy for like six months. We hung out with same group of friends. He chased me for 3 weeks when I finally said, whatever. He picked me up in his 1966 Buick Special that wasn’t special. It looked like someone took a sledge hammer to it. He pulls up into Oak Hill Country Club and says to the Valle “park this a good spot because last time I was here all this shit happened to it.” Line from Beverly Hills. I was mortified. Then we decided to go to a movie, that he picked…wait for it…he took me to see THE KILLING FIELDS on Valentine’s Date for a first date? Yes. I married this man.

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I’m so glad he stopped wearing that hat and that shirt!

So, the date pretty much sucked, but the interesting thing was he was just so sweet in his weird way. Nothing has changed there. Nothing. We’ve been together for nearly 32 years, 31 years living under the same roof and 28 years married. I think that’s something.

Feel free to share your dating stories…

Podcasts and the Personality Hacker

For Christmas, my husband gave me Beats Wireless Headphones along with a speaker for my office so I can listen to music while working or while cleaning, cooking, laundry, whatever. My daughter got me hooked on Podcasts, so the headphones come in handy while I’m wondering about the house.

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Anyway, I found this fun Podcast/Blog called Personally Hacker. It’s all about Myers-Briggs and the different personality types. I’ve always been fascinated by how we perceive ourselves and others. I’ve taken the Myers-Briggs test and have always landed on INFJ. I took their test, which isn’t half as long, and once again, I landed on the INFJ. So, I decided to listen to their podcast on the INFJ personality type. Wow. Very interesting. Mostly because it gave me such insight into myself and why I fall back into what I think are old habits, or safety zones, protecting me from the big bad world. It also gave me insight into other people, especially those who don’t “get me”.

The other concept I liked from this blog/podcast is the Car Model. When I listened to them talk about this in Podcast, it really made sense with how we learn new information and make decisions. Check it out, then the following might make sense. I think as an INFJ my car model goes something like this:

Driver: Introverted iNtuition – “Perspectives”

Co-Pilot: Extroverted Thinking – “Harmony”

10 Year-Old: Introverted Thinking – “Accuracy”

3 Year-Old: Extraverted Sensing – “Sensation”

What really fascinated me was that in this model, our 10 year-old is also called our “Defensive State”. For me, based on this model, it’s so true!

Just one of many personal favorite topics! Feel free to discuss, comment, tell me your personality type, any thoughts. I’ll probably come back to this at a later date…

Finding the right poison…for a fiction book…

Most of my ideas come from the news, true crime stories, weird stuff you just can’t make up. I just finished the draft of TO PROTECT HIS OWN. The opening scene was particularly hard for me because the Hero’s father was poisoned, but I wasn’t sure what the poison should be or how it would be best administered. I also didn’t want the father to die…just yet. So I needed something that could kill him, even weeks later, but something he could also survive. I also needed something immediate. Not something that happened over time because the kicker in this story is that the poison wasn’t meant for him, it was meant for the heroine.

When I first started writing, I bought TONS of books on writing as well resource books for writers. One of those books was BOOK OF POISONS.

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The book gave me a few possible poisons to pick from, but the book is very basic, listing the poisons along with a few bullet points about reaction time, antidotes/treatments, and with some poisons, a short case study. The book doesn’t go into detail about each poison, so it required a little more research. Hello GOOGLE.

Research is interesting. Not just because you learn new things, but while sometimes you end up going down the research rabbit hole. That’s always fun. Talk about knowing a bunch of useless information… but a lot of that stuff makes for great conversations. My husband and I went to dinner with some friends the other night. He happens to be a dentist. He’s always asking me about my writing and his wife is my biggest fan. Love them both. Anyway, we got talking about all sorts of ways to kill someone. The poor people in this restaurant. But now I’ve got this idea for a killer dentist! Geez. Got to love Murder and Mayhem!

Bring on 2017! The Year of the Rooster?

Welcome to my first blog of the New Year. Lots of changes in my life this year. They are all good, but change is often hard, so I’m kicking off the new year with a positive attitude and focusing on writing and books. This blog will be dedicated to things I love. Murder and Mayhem with a dollop of love and shit load of fun and personal favorites of whatever. Today we’re going to start off with a yearly tradition of mine.

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I always start the New Year with checking out my horoscope. According the Chinese Calendar, it is the Year of the Rooster and since I was born in 1966, my horoscope predictions are from the sign of the Horse. I don’t really believe in horoscopes because they are so vaguely worded that we can bend any of it to fit our current circumstances, at least that’s my story and I’m sticking to it. That said, the first paragraph of my horoscope mentioned me slowing down, which I know is coming in 2017, and me don’t like to slow down, as it states in the horoscope. Here is a link to my Horse Year. You can poke around and see what Chinese sign you are and check out your predictions.

Feel free to share your sign, insights, and thoughts on what 2017 will mean to you!

Live long and prosper…