Posts Tagged ‘radio’

It’s time for another author interview! This one is with a Facebook friend whom I’ve known for a couple of years now. And while what we write and how we write are very different, I’m glad to know her and I think she’s just terrific. She’s got a new book out and she’s got more on the way, apparently. I think we could all learn a thing or two from her.

Oh, and you’ve seen her name on the blog before. Remember that radio show I was on not too long ago? She’s the host. Ladies and gentleman, Dellani Oakes (hey, that rhymed!).

Welcome to my blog, Dellani. Tell us a little about yourself and what you write.

I’m an author of mostly romantic fiction. I have one historical romance, one retro-romance, three futuristic romances and three romantic suspense already published. My latest book, One Night in Daytona Beach, is an erotic romance, due out October 28th.

Many of my books are set here on the east coast of Florida, as I have lived here since 1989 and consider it to be my hometown. I may not be a Florida native by birth, but I am at heart. I think it’s impossible to live anywhere and not have it become a part of you.

What are some books you’ve written that you’d recommend?

Would I be awful if I recommended them all? It depends upon what you like:

Historical Romance set in Florida in 1739. Full of spies and intrigue – Indian Summer

Retro Romance set in Nebraska in 1976. Action packed thrill ride. – Under the Western Sky

Futuristic Romance/ Sci-Fi set in space in 3032, some hot romance, intrigue, action…. – The Lone Wolf Series – Lone Wolf, Shakazhan and The Maker

Romantic Suspense, all set in Florida in the present. Ice meltingly hot, each also features a fast paced suspense – Undiscovered, The Ninja Tattoo and Conduct Unbecoming

Erotic Romance. The genre and title say it all. Ultra hot, this is also a romantic suspense, which takes place in 24 hours – One Night in Daytona Beach

Each book has something different to recommend it. If you want exciting stories that make you laugh, cry and fall in love, then any one of them would be a good fit.

Good thing there’s quite a selection, then. What are you working on now?

I tend to hop around a lot when I write. From time to time, I am inspired and the story flows quickly, finishing as fast as I can type. Other stories come more slowly. I just finished a romantic suspense a few days ago, that I wrote in four days. I am currently working on book 3 in a YA series I started 3 years ago (not yet published).

What made you become a writer?

I never wanted to be anything else. Necessity sent me in different directions, but I always was compelled to write. I have told stories and written poems, songs, short stories and plays for as long as I can remember. I started writing my first novel in 1988, but it’s still unfinished. My first complete novel is my historical romance, Indian Summer.

You also run some online radio programs, including one I was on. Tell us about those.

It all started with April Robins. She came up with the idea of Red River Writers in 2007, a page on Facebook. I happened to join. Shortly after, author JD Holiday suggested that we begin shows on Blog Talk Radio interviewing one another and other authors. I hopped in as an assistant and was terrible at it. A couple other hosts left and April asked me to take over their show slots. Thus, Dellani’s Tea Time and What’s Write for Me were born.

Dellani’s Tea Time, 4:00 PM EST every second Monday of the month, was my first show. I wasn’t quite as bad at that as I was at assisting, and found I quite liked it. Things ran more smoothly once I brought on author Christina Giguere (Rachel Rueben) as my co-host. She keeps things running smoothly for me and is an absolute treasure.

What’s Write for Me was kind of an afterthought. We decided to add more shows to the schedule and we were asked to pick a day. I asked for the fourth Wednesday of the month (also at 4:00 PM EST) because I didn’t want shows back to back. (Though some months they are)

The shows are available, for free, to any author – or soon to be author. Best way to reach me is through Facebook. I also interview authors on my blogs.

What do you do when you’re not writing?

If I’m not writing, I’m reading. (I also admit to a terrible Netflix addiction) I enjoy re-reading books I love, as well as finding new ones to treasure. I also read and edit my own work. Once a week, I volunteer at the local Council on Aging where I facilitate a small writing group. It’s called Fun in Writing and we have a wonderful time. It’s a great way for older people to socialize and keep their minds sharp. I joke that most of my best friends are old enough to be my mother, but it’s true.

What is some advice you would give to other writers, regardless of experience or background?

Write the way that feels right. So many “how to” books will tell you that you must outline, plan carefully and draw up character sketches before you put pen to paper (or fingers to keys). I’m here to tell you that you don’t have to do that. There is no shame in just sitting down to write, often called pantsing (writing by the seat of your pants) by those who are supposedly in the know. (We panters call them plotters). I’ve been told that my way of approaching a story is inefficient, that I can’t possibly accomplish my goals as a writer if I don’t know where my story is going. According to the naysayers, I’m supposed to put all my creative energy into an outline. I beg to differ.

I have written books in as little as four days. I’m not talking about some 20,000 word novella (though I’ve done those as well), I mean a 54,087 word novel. That’s after I completed another novel for NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writer’s Month) the day before, which was just over 50,000. (The Ninja Tattoo, available from Tirgearr Publishing). Tell me my way is inefficient, please!

Just to bring my point home, I’ve spoken to dozens of authors over the last few years and the majority of them write the way I do, rarely planning anything. There is absolutely nothing wrong with plotting and planning, but there’s nothing wrong with my way, either.

And finally, if you were stuck on a desert island and you could only bring three books with you, which three would you choose?

Oh, I hate this question, because I can’t think of only three books I’d want to have. Honestly, give me notebooks and pens so I can write my own. I will keep myself wonderfully entertained.

I’m seeing that response quite a lot these days. Well, thank you Dellani for joining us. Good luck with everything you do in the future.

If you would like to check out more about Dellani and her work, you can check out her blog, as well as Facebook and Amazon.

All for now. I’m going to try and get a few more interviews out, among other things, so look out for those. Until next time, my Followers of Fear!

As you know, two nights ago I was a guest on the online radio show “What’s Write For Me” with Dellani Oakes, which was a lot of fun. We had a good group of guests that night, and some very interesting discussions because of it. Plus the excerpts were very interesting.

As promised, I’m posting the podcast here for your enjoyment. You can listen to it, hear my voice if you’ve never heard it (apparently it comes with an echo, though that may just be my apartment), and just hear what happens when a bunch of authors get together over the Internet and talk about the craft. Plus I try my hand at a Russian accent and apparently it comes off pretty well.

If everything has gone right, the podcast has been embedded below.

http://player.cinchcast.com/?platformId=1&assetType=single&assetId=7891085

Check Out Books Podcasts at Blog Talk Radio with Red River Radio on BlogTalkRadio

If it hasn’t, and above this paragraph there isn’t a podcast to listen to, you can click here and listen to the podcast on the original website. Enjoy, and let me know what you think. Do you want to read any of these authors now? Does my Russian accent sound convincing at all? Let me know in the comments below and have a great weekend, my Followers of Fear!

I’m writing this out quickly before the show starts. I’ll be doing an interview with Dellani Oakes at 4PM EST (or 10PM for me, hence why the title says “tonight”) on her online radio show “What’s Write For Me.” I’ll be reading an excerpt from Snake, answering questions, and just having a good time despite how late it is for me.

I hope you’re able to tune in for the show. If not, I’ll try and post the interview at some later point for you to listen to. Either way, here’s the link for the show.

See you in about half an hour, I guess. Wish me luck, my Followers of Fear!

You’re probably wondering what the title of this post means. Well, it’s the title of my latest short story, so you can stop wondering “Did this guy start doing some sort of study or documentary or something and not share it with us? That’s very unlike him.”

Anyway, “A Project in Western Ideals” is a short story I just finished at 9,123 words and follows a girl who is being slowly turned into a human Barbie doll by a woman who is more than she seems. The story’s title comes from a phrase that appears a lot in the story, and I felt that it fit the story so well, that I should use it for the title, especially since I didn’t like any of the titles I’d used before, like “Perfection” or “My Perfect Body”.

The story was inspired by a woman in Russia named Angelica Kenova, who is a human Barbie. I first heard about her prior to leaving the States for Germany, when I read an article about her. According to the article, her parents control almost every aspect of her life: they buy her clothes (most of which are kind of sexy and form-fitting); they control her diet and how much she exercises; they even accompany her on dates! And while the article didn’t give any hints about how Ms. Kenova felt personally about this lifestyle (for all I know she likes being her parents’ toy), I did get the impression her parents were the driving force behind how she became this:

 

Yeah, that’s an actual person, not a doll. I even have trouble telling the difference sometimes. And hearing about her story, I started wondering what sort of parents would help and encourage or possibly even force their daughter to go down this route despite the numerous health issues that doing so can cause. This led to “A Project in Western Ideals”, which explores a young woman going through this sort of transformation, and not through her own choice.

As far as my fiction goes, it’s not as dark anything I normally write (I let my protagonist share her deepest thoughts with the audience and she is pretty funny without intending to be), but it does deal with the health problems of trying to look like Barbie and how it’s ultimately creating a fake version of yourself (read this article to get an idea of how bad it is for you if you’re curious). I also think the main character is a lot of fun and I enjoyed writing her.

However, I do think that the climax and ending could use some work. As they stand now, they feel clunky to me and don’t match up to the beginning of the story. The beginning could have some stuff cut out from it too, and I’d like to explore the antagonist a bit more as well, get a bit more of the crazy that makes her do this to my protagonist.

Well, we’ll see what happens when I get to the second draft. And by the time I do, I’ll probably have had some ideas on how to better this story. And I definitely want to make this one better, because with a bit of work, I think it could be one of the highlights of Teenage Wasteland (speaking of which, I’ve got seven stories so far set for that collection at various stages of readiness for publication, including this one. With time, I think I could get a few more in and truly make it an extraordinary read).

In the meantime though, I said this was going to be the last short story I’d write before starting work on Laura Horn again. However since I’m about ten days from leaving Germany and heading back to Columbus, I think I’ll hold off on starting any big projects until I’m back in the States, writing or editing. Instead, I’ll edit a few short stories (none that need to be rewritten, that’s basically starting from the beginning again) and get to work on LH once I’m home and settled back in.

Well, Yom Kippur, the Jewish Day of Atonement is in a few hours. I’m going to have the biggest meal I can in anticipation of the fast nd see you again before What’s Write For Me tomorrow afternoon (or tomorrow night if you’re me). You all have a wonderful day, my Followers of Fear. I know I am.

Well, as if life wasn’t already busy enough for me. This coming Wednesday, right after Yom Kuppur ends for me, I’ll be participating in “What’s Write For Me”, a monthly online radio show where show hosts Dellani Oakes and Christina Giguere talk to three awesome novelists, who also read an excerpt of their books. And guess what? I get to be one of the authors this month!

I’m very honored that Dellani asked me to participate in this month’s show. From what I understand it gets quite an audience during the live recording and in archived listenings, and I’m very excited to be able to reach a huge new audience. Thanks Dellani!

If you wish to listen to the show, it’s taking place next week on Wednesday, September 23rd, at 4:OO PM Eastern Standard Time (10:00 PM for me. I’m going to be a very tired writer the next day, but for this it’s worth it! Plus I have caffeine in the office, so it works out). You can tune in to listen by following this link. If you are unfortunately unable to listen to it live (like my family), you can listen to it archived by following the same link above.

Well, till the morning. Have a good night, my Followers of Fear, and pleasant nightmares!

I’m a feminist. I believe that women should be given equal treatment to men financially, politically, and socially. I believe this won’t disenfranchise men, but instead make women equal partners to men. In fact, men such as myself can be ardent feminists, and there are plenty of them out there. I also believe that there are people who dislike feminism because of ignorance or prejudice. And I believe that those who actively work to dissuade people from identifying feminism or tear down some of the movement’s tenets and beliefs are doing a lot more harm than good. Normally I ignore what is said, but occasionally something is so blatantly wrong or harmful to women that I have to speak up.

So when I read what Rush Limbaugh said today and then heard it for myself, I couldn’t keep quiet. Normally I ignore what Mr. Limbaugh says. Since the Sandra Fluke debacle two years ago, I’ve actually been surprised that he’s still on the air, let alone that he hasn’t learned from his mistakes or maybe hired someone to edit what he plans to say before he says it. But today might be the worst thing he’s said since he talked about Ms. Fluke.

I couldn’t embed the audio of the clip in question onto this post (if you’d like to hear it yourself, you can check out the Huffington Post article where I first read about it), so I’m talking about it here. In short, Mr. Limbaugh said that he finds the idea of “No” means “No” ridiculous.  He says:

How many of you guys in your own experience with women have learned that ‘no’ means ‘yes’ if you know how to spot it?…It used to be used as a cliche.

So under this definition of consent, when a woman says “no”, it really means “yes” under certain circumstances (and I bet to a guy like Mr. Limbaugh, there are few, if any, circumstances where “no” actually means “no”). A guy just has to “spot” it. I’m just wondering, how exactly do you spot the signs that a woman is actually saying “yes” underneath the resounding “no”? Enlighten me.

And if you think about it, this definition could extend not just to women. Perhaps a young child is actually saying yes to being touched inappropriately, even if they’re being touched by a parent or other relative. And according to Mr. Limbaugh’s definition of consent, if a gay man comes onto him or any other man and the second man says no, the gay man is allowed to go on if they believe “the signs” are there telling them to go on.* It’s uncomfortable to think about, but it could happen.

*I’m not actually insinuating that anyone does or should do this, be they straight or gay men, relatives of a child, or anything else. I’m just trying to put this in the context that Mr. Limbaugh outlines and make sense of the implications.

Also notice how Mr. Limbaugh asks for the opinions of the male listeners of his show, but not the female listeners. Why doesn’t Mr. Limbaugh ask about the female listeners’ experiences? I’m sure some of them have quite the stories to tell. According to the website of the Rape, Abuse, And Incest National Network, about 1 in 6 women are the victims of an attempted or completed rape in their lifetimes. 1 in 33 men suffer the same sort of attacks, and 15% of children under the age of 12 are vulnerable to rape or sexual assault. Victims of sexual assault are three times more likely to suffer from depression, four times more likely to suffer from PTSD and/or consider suicide, and 13 and 26 times more likely to abuse alcohol or drugs, respectively. A third of them get pregnant from their ordeals. How many of these women said “no” and that was ignored or interpreted as meaning “yes”? And how many of them listen to the Rush Limbaugh Show?

Mr. Limbaugh also quotes from the student handbook at Ohio State University** on what constitutes consent. Well, actually he isn’t quoting, exactly. Only a small bit of what he says is actually from the Student Code of Conduct (which you can read here). I have no idea where he’s getting this stuff about the thirteen-year-olds consenting to sex. But beyond all that, the point Mr. Limbaugh is trying to make is that all these requirements for having consent is too much and actually getting in the way of romance and seduction. I don’t have the most experience in this, but if you ask me, when two consenting partners are very much in love, care deeply about the other, and want to make each other happy, then all this stuff Mr. Limbaugh believes gets in the way of romance and seduction becomes unnecessary. The couple know each other well enough to know what is safe, what is crossing a boundary, and how to make sure both of them have an enjoyable sexual experience.

And for couples who aren’t at that point yet, perhaps they don’t need to ask permission to do every single thing. But it is common sense to discuss with your partner what you consider safe sexual territory, and to pay attention to what your partner is telling you, verbally or non-verbally. If your partner says no, doesn’t matter if you or your partner are male, female, or some other third gender. No means no, under ALL circumstances.

Mr. Limbaugh makes it seem like you have to go through a maze to have sex, but I don’t think that’s actually the case.

**For future reference, would you please not use my alma mater in your program? It’s not a very good example at the moment, anyway: sad as I am to admit, OSU’s marching band is under investigation for fostering an atmosphere of sexual assault, and there are other investigations occurring as well, last I checked. I still love this school and I’m not proud of what’s happened here, but you can’t fight your demons if you don’t admit to them, so I’m putting them out there.

So Mr. Limbaugh may feel that there are exceptions to the No rule and all those requirements for consent are a bit too much for your average man looking for sex. But with sexual assault so prevalent in our nation, I feel having these things pointed out to us is a good thing. Not only does it make us aware of a problem that needs to be combated, but following these rules helps to make our country safer for all, and helps to eliminate a very terrible problem.

Mr. Limbaugh does make one very good point, and that is we need to change how we teach our boys. I agree, but I think we need to change how we teach our girls too, and maybe how we approach sex in general. Men should be taught that there is nothing wrong with wanting to have sex, provided you are educated about both the benefits and the consequences of sex, particularly unsafe, forced or alternative forms of sex. And girls should be taught about their bodies, all that comes with sex, and that there is nothing they should be ashamed of when it comes to their bodies or their sexuality, no mater what anyone says. And above all, it should be stressed that no one owns your body but you, and you should decide what can and cannot be done with it.

Mr. Limbaugh, I hope what you’ve said today gets talked about by a variety of people. I hope that you make the newsrounds for your comments, because what you said is hurtful and shameful and trivializes a major problem. And perhaps after what you’ve said, there can be some constructive change to stop this ongoing epidemic of sexual assault in our nation. I would very much like to say that.

And Mr. Limbaugh, perhaps after this latest incdent, you might take steps to avoid saying such hurtful and despicable things on your program. And if that’s not possible, then maybe it’d be better for a lot of people (and I say this with all the sensitivity I can muster in such a situation) if you would kindly shut up.