Archive for September, 2007

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What Stace had to say on Friday, September 28th, 2007
Who Pays?

So reading this article on Gawker got me thinking.

The article, for those who don’t want to or don’t have time to click and read it, is about “going Dutch” on dates. Specifically the first few dates. And whether it’s okay for a man to expect a woman to pay for her own dinner on a first date. And whether women should expect to have their meals paid for. And if it’s about men being cheap or women being empowered. Or whatever.

I haven’t dated in some time, and when I did…well, frankly, I pretty much never did. Not your typical dinner date, anyway. I’d usually hung around with a guy for some time before we really went out together. Or we’d already kissed, or whatever, and so were dating. Usually we were both so poor that whoever had money would pay. But we were also barely in our twenties and spent most of our available cash on beer.

But even then, if it was a date-type evening, I never considered paying. When my boyfriend would say he wanted us to go out to eat, we both took it for granted he would pay. When we just decided to go out on the spur of the moment we’d go dutch, but a “date”–he paid. (Unless I took him out for his birthday or something.)

All of my heroes in my books pay. For everything. This has a lot to do with them being richer than Croesus, but I admit, it’s also because I think the man should pay, at least in the beginning. He’s the one doing the inviting*, he’s the one doing the seducing, so he pays.

And the way he asks always indicates he’s paying, too. Not “Why don’t we go out to eat?” but “Let me take you out to dinner” or “Come on, I’ll buy you dinner.” And my heroines don’t argue with that. Sometimes they may think about not turning down a free dinner, but, oddly, power struggles in the relationships of my characters are never financial (I say “oddly” because it’s only just occured to me). Not one of my heroines feels she’s less independent and strong if she lets the man pay. They make it very clear that he’s buying dinner, not her body, (not stridently; the topic is never discussed, it’s just clear) and that they expect to be treated and spoken to a certain way and that’s that.

Perhaps it’s because my heroes, however criminal their other activities may be or no matter how coldly they may order the deaths of their enemies, are gentlemen.

Or perhaps I’m a totally clueless dinosaur and should be shot for betraying womankind.

What do you think?

(*the person who does the inviting should pay. This is the only exception to the “men should pay” rule. But then, I don’t believe women should ask men out, either, and the reason is because if a man’s not man enough to take a chance and ask you for a date, maybe he’s not man enough period. I’ve asked a few guys out over the course of my life, and it’s never worked out. It sets a precedent, I think, where you’re the pursuer and he gets to sit back and let you do it. It makes them overconfident.)


I’m over at The Book Bitches guest bitching about Jackie Collins, come on by and say hi! The Bitches are awesome fun, and they did a little interview with me as well (below the first post).

I did an interview at Rachel Carrington’s blog about my Publishing series, so check that one out too!

What Stace had to say on Wednesday, September 26th, 2007
We Have Nothing to Fear…

…but fiery death at 13,000 feet.

See, I’ve been gently encouraged by more than one person to attend the Romantic Times convention next year. And I really, really do want to go. There’s parties. There’s a bar. There’s a book signing that’s huge and takes place two weeks after Personal Demons will be released. There’s a bar. There’s lots of writers. I’d get to stay in a hotel room. With a bar.

But I’m terrified of flying. And I hate flying. And this particular journey would require a stopover, which brings my total travel time, from leaving my door to arriving in Pittsburgh, to something like 16 hours. And did I mention I’m afraid to fly?

I do it. I’ve done it. But the older I get the more scared I get. And intellectually I know it’s safe and blah de blah. But I can’t help thinking I’ll be unlucky. I hate being a person who doesn’t do things they want to do because they’re afraid, but…really, isn’t it a bit reckless, a bit irresponsible, to take such chances, just so I can dress up in fun costumes and drink and sign books, when I have two little girls and a husband who need me?

I am on the horns of a dilemma.

Not to menton the cost, which is not insignificant. $450 for the con itself. ¬£300 for the flight, which translates to about $600. Another $600 or so for the hotel room. Not to mention food and cab fare and souvenirs and regular shopping (in AMERICA!! My Wendy’s and Mountain Dew bill alone will probably be staggering). Add another, say, $500 for promo items and stuff I’ll need to take with me, plus who knows how much for costumes…it becomes wearying. And I could spend all that money and end up dead, which is not an appealing prospect.

So I’m thinking. I’ll probably keep thinking for the next few months.


–Our good friend, commenter KIS (Kirsten Imma Sael), has made a sale to Samhain.

–Our good friend–who some of you will recall from Miss Snark’s place–Sha’el, Princess of Pixies, has sold her Pixie book to Drollerie Press.

–Our good friend, commenter V95, was injured in an accident a few weeks ago. He’s okay, but recovery is slow, so spare a thought for him.

What Stace had to say on Tuesday, September 25th, 2007

Go read it here.

What Stace had to say on Monday, September 24th, 2007
The Unredeemable Sin?

When I did my post about heroes hitting women, Milady Insanity commented on livejournal that there is in fact a worse crime for a hero to commit than hitting a woman. Rape. Rape is the unredeemable sin.

Or not.

Because as we all know, men have been redeemed from it countless times. The most famous case is of course Luke and Laura from General Hospital back in 1981. I’ve spent some time hunting but can’t find any other examples online, although I know there are, because I remember reading an article about it a few years back that cited more recent cases.

So why is that? Is it because we can believe a man might only rape a woman once, but once he starts hitting, he’ll never stop? If the hero hit the heroine because he loved her so much he couldn’t help himself, would that be any different?

“Forced seduction” is fairly popular still, as far as I know. Yes, the difference there is that the heroine always consents, even if it’s at the last second. And I’ll be honest. I don’t see anything wrong with it. As I said before, and will keep saying, we sometimes enjoy things in books that would horrify us in real life, because books are safe. We can experience our less savory fantasies vicariously, and I think that’s a good thing.

But I also wonder if I personally would be able to get past an actual rape in a book–not a forced seduction, but an out-and-out rape. I don’t think so. I just don’t think it’s a storyline that would work for me. Not having rape in the storyline–again, yet another reason Demon’s Triad will likely garner an X rating. The rape in that book is of a man, not of a woman, but it’s rape just the same, and there’s a particularly twisted reasoning behind it. Boy did we have to be careful writing and editing that scene, especially because of the identity of the rapist (you’ll have to read it to find out.) It’s a very, very dark book.

But I’ll be honest. The scene worked. And we actually discussed writing a sequel where the rapist is redeemed but neither of us really had much of a taste for it. Redeeming the rapist not only from rape but from various other crimes simply didn’t hold much appeal. Neither of us thought it was possible to do in one book.

What do you think? Is there any way you’d read a book–a romance, I should specify–in which the hero was a rapist? In which the hero raped the heroine? Or would you throw it across the room? Do you think such a book could even be published today?

And in other news, I had a great time on Saturday with Miss Caitlin Kittredge, who was gracous enough to listen to me drone on while I had her trapped in my car for hours. We drove to Cornwall (STUNNING) and went to the Museum of Witchcraft, which was fascinating and gave me a whole bunch of cool ideas. And now I feel all fired up and excited again, which is great because my enthusiasm has been flagging of late, what with the aborted Caveman attempt and all sorts of little projects on my mind. I’m refreshed again…even if I am having trouble again with my new Caveman tale, which I fear may not have the right voice for EC.

Anyway. That’s basically it for the moment. I have some fun stuff for Wednesday. I think it’s time we start having fun here again.

And I’ll be blogging at the League tomorrow about when things go wrong…

What Stace had to say on Friday, September 21st, 2007
Manic Friday

Oh, what a busy busy morning.

Started off just fine. Then my dress for this year’s Christmas party arrived (remember, the big fancy one my husband’s work throw every year? I found a faboo dress ON SALE at Fairy Gothmother online. Wheeee! Shiny burgundy silk, the kind that looks black when the light hits it right, I am so, so jazzed. I am also on a serious diet again. I’ve lost almost three pounds in the last week and a half, so doing well.)

I figured I had just enough time to open the package, but of course once I SAW it, I couldn’t resist running upstairs and trying it on–at least the top (it’s a two piece.)

Then Princess lost a tooth, good ecause it’s been loose for a while.

I was running a little late thanks to the couture oogling and the tooth-hole examining and the convincing Princess it wasn’t exactly a good idea to take the tooth to school, because what if she lost it and so couldn’t leave it for the tooth fairy, when she suddenly said, “We were supposed to take our little sisters to school for pictures today!”

It’s school picture day.

And my children, although (thankfully) clean, look basically like they’ve just rolled out of bed–Princess’s pigtails are uneven, Faerie’s hair isn’t brushed. I grab the brush and wipes for her little face and haul ass, we were supposed to be there fifteen minutes before!

Then I waited for half an hour to get the picture. (Her school does pictures of kids with their siblings before school, which is nice of them.) Of course, I didn’t bring anything to clip Faerie’s hair out of her face. Also of course, they while away the waiting time by running around like loons, so by the time out turn comes Faerie is sweaty.

Picture turns out okay. But it’s 9:30, and we need to be at Faerie’s new preschool at 10:30 for an hour-long “adjustent visit”. And I have to take a shower.

Rush home. Call hubs to tell him what lazy and irresponsible parents we are, that we forgot school picture day. Shower. Can’t resist trying on skirt for dress. Looovely. Dry hair.

Go to preschool, all goes great! Yay! And it’s picture day there too, so Faerie gets hers taken. Photographer loves her, she won’t stop posing. Like, head to one side, big smile, shoulder forward posing. It’s hysterical. We finally get a straight forward shot, adorable, of course.

Come home. Try on dress again, this time with crinoline. Wheee! Dress does not need hemming with crinoline and heels! I can spend the money I saved on jewelry.

And that’s been my morning. And I don’t know what I’ll make for dinner still.

As far as work goes…last night I decided to scrap my almost-half-finished Caveman story and do something else. I thought the heroine was adorable and the set up cute but it just wasn’t working. BUT, I’m waaay excited about the new one, it’s already at around 5k, and I expect to have it finished in plenty of time. So out of my 40k words in just over two weeks goal, I have completed, um…about 25k. Not bad. Of course 5k of that is useless, but still.

And the day is flying by. And that’s it.

Oh, except, I’m putting together a FAQ for the Stacia Kane site. I know you guys don’t like having to do this (judging by the tepid responses it gets) but if you want to ask a question for the site please do! Can’t have a FAQ without ’em!

What Stace had to say on Wednesday, September 19th, 2007

Wow! I got such a lovely response yesterday, and everyone seems to like my little magnets so much! Very exciting, especially since I designed them myself and came up with the catchphrase all on me own.

So, I’m extending the little mini contest. Pimp the League, and specifically me (mentioning how cool and funny I am and especially how you can’t wait to get your hot little hands on your very own copy of Personal Demons when it comes out) and you’re in with a chance. AND, I’m pretty sure I’ll be giving away more than one magnet. Because y’all seriously blew me away with how enthusiastic you were. (Unless you were just faking it, and inside thinking, “She expects us to get excited about a dumb little magnet? WTF? Cheapskate. Guess I’ll say something nice, but…sheesh.” In which case…ow, that was mean!)

And…in a fit of dorky excitement, I created something else. Check this out:

It needs some tweaking–I’d like the image to fill the entire clockface but there doesn’t seem to be a way to do that on CafePress–but I’m pleased with it. I think it might be a fun prize giveaway at some point, which is the important thing.

And speaking of the League, Mark Henry is over there today, probably being hysterical, because that’s what Mark does (hysterical as in funny, not as in, um, running around flailing his hands and crying like a girlie.) Oh, and the League has an RSS feed now, and it’s synidcated on livejournal too, that’s here.

What else? The Eighth Wand is on the coming soon page at EC! It’s listed as a Tricks or Treats antho story rather than Torrid Tarot, but I’m sure they’ll fix it as soon as they’re awake over there in the US. Lol, I’m jinxed when it comes to those listings!

There was something else, too, and I don’t remember what it was, but it was another updatey kind of thing. What sucks is, as much as it’s exciting to have news to share, it’s probably not as interesting for you guys who comment (and the hundred or so every day who don’t, shame on you). So I guess I’ll reserve Mondays for those posts (I’d do Fridays but I don’t get as many comments on Fridays.) I don’t know what I’ll talk about this Friday, but my next big post will be about rape and forced seduction, and the heroes who do those things.

Watched Miller’s Crossing again last night. I love that movie so much.

And it’s officially fall here–although we didn’t really have a summer. The temperatures have already been down in the 50s here, and even lower up north, like, freezing lower. Fall is my favorite season, hands down, I love the warming food, I love the bite in the air, I love the colors, I love it all. And this year hubs is taking Thanksgiving and the day after ff work, so we’ll have a proper holiday.

Is it fall where you are? What are you looking forward to about fall?

Oh, and raise your hands everyone who thinks OJ has a snowball’s chance of getting out of jail this time. *hands firmly in lap*

What Stace had to say on Tuesday, September 18th, 2007
Pimp me out, baby!

Yes! My inaugural blog over at the League of Reluctant Adults blog today, on the subject of: Rudolph and the Island of Misfit Toys, or is funny the Rodney Dangerfield of Speculative Fiction?

And I’m offering a prize, too! My book doesn’t come out until April, but I’m still a giver.

It’s a magnet!

What does it say? “The Yezer made me do it.” What does it mean? The Yezer Ha-Ra is the Hebrew name for that inclination in all of us to do evil, to hate ourselves, to succumb to our desire to sin and create new sins, to give up on life, to dwell on bad memories, etc. In other words, the Yezer Ha-Ra is the Hebrew name for our personal demons.

So don’t forget to pimp us out, and be the first to get a magnet! Trust me. As David Ogden Stiers said in Better off Dead, “Everyone’s going to have one of these.”

So pimp us on your blog and link to my post, and you could be the proud owner of the very first item of Personal Demons merchandise. That’s bound to be worth money, folks.

See you over there!

What Stace had to say on Monday, September 17th, 2007
The League of Reluctant Adults is Here!

Five urban fantasy writers who don’t take themselves very seriously. Four incredibly talented writers, and…uh…me.

Anton Strout
Jill Myles
Ilona Andrews
Mark Henry

And me!

Check our supercool website out here! We’ll be blogging every week about all sorts of different topics, and on weekend we might have some cool publishing interviews and nifty things, too.

I’ll be blogging on Tuesdays. Hopefully that will hide the drabness of my blogs, because those other four are some seriously funny people.

AND, if you blog about us, or plug us in any way, make sure you let me, or any one of us know–our blog is here. Plug us and be entered to win an ARC of Anton Strout’s February release, Dead to Me,, which looks seriously awesome, even if Anton is a Neil Young fan (gak. I just threw up a little bit.)

So come check us out, and please stop by on Tuesdays so I’m not the only one with nobody responding!

And the best part?! I get to play with BOYS!! It’s a group with BOYS in it! Yay!!

What Stace had to say on Sunday, September 16th, 2007
Get Ready…

What Stace had to say on Friday, September 14th, 2007
What’s he wearing under there?

Oh, how I hate writing about men’s underwear.

See, here’s my problem. I’m just plain wierd.

For some reason, although I know men in the real world wear underwear, and although I don’t find anything about men’s underwear intrinsically unsexy, I have such a hard time including men’s underwear in sex scenes. Or even regular scenes. So I often write heroes who don’t wear any.

But that’s kind of gross, isn’t it? I mean, if you think about it, not only would a man with no underwear be risking all sorts of zipper injuries, but all sorts of, um, fluids and such would get all over his pants.

This is the same reason I rarely write women who don’t wear undies. C’mon. We’ve all seen the trainwreck that is Britney and her love of ungracefully exiting from various automobiles, thus flashing us her stubbly ladyparts. Am I the only one who looks at that and thinks, not only is it just tacky, but…eeew! Her dresses must need some serious cleaning after every wearing.

(Yes, I realize this is a disgusting post. But you know what? I’m just this brave, to tackle the unpleasant little topics.)

The problem with men’s underwear is that it’s only sexy if it’s somewhat prim. A man who wears little tiny undies just seems like kind of an egotistical jerk, really. But neither is it especially appealing in a sex scene to have to talk about lifting the undies up so that, um, they won’t catch on anything when they’re tugged down. Removing ladies’ panties is simple, they slide right off (or are torn off, which is always nice in a book when it’s not your own panties, probably expensive and specially purchased, which have inflamed the man to such a point that he needs to destroy them. Sexy in real life, too, believe me, but not as much fun after when you’re thinking, “My favorite panties!” or “That’s forty bucks down the drain.”)

And there are so many lovely ways to describe ladies’ panties. (I love the phrase “ladies’ panties”.) They’re scraps of silk and lace, or just plain silky or lacy, or even triangles of silk, or sweetly cotton if you happen to be writing a heroine who likes more basic undies–but cotton panties don’t tear easily, be warned. I had a few velvet pairs once, which was fun, and would be fun to write about. Women’s panties slide under a man’s fingers.

Men’s? I dare you to think of a sexy phrase to describe men’s underwear. They’re utiliatarian. At least, they’d better be, because what kind of manly hero wears silky panties? Even silk boxers feel a little twee for a fully grown man, like he’s hiding not only those (under his clothing, see) but some sort of nanny fantasy as well. Men’s underwear is cotton. It has a thick elastic waistband. Thick elastic on pretty much anything just isn’t sexy. It is not sexy to write about pulling away a thick elastic waistband.

But really, men should wear underwear. Their bits dangle. They need support. And nobody wants to see exact outlines against the fabric when a man sits down. That’s just creepy. Not to mention those pesky fluids. And those treacherous zippers.

So what do you guys think?

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