Thursday, June 29, 2006

****CONTEST****

Find The Phallus of Freedom!!

Since the cover on Out of This World has been changed, I thought it would be fun to run a contest seeking the *imaginary* phallic symbol on the new cover. Send me an email detailing where you see the phallus on the new cover for a chance to win a free download containing the old, collectible cover! I'll enter your email addy into the pot and draw one lucky winner on July 5th.

Send your answer to annwesleyhardin@gmail.com by midnight July 4th, and put Freedom Phallus in the subject line!

Monday, June 26, 2006

Out of This World -- Print Cover!

The Cover Wizards at EC have blessed me with another winner! Notice the suggestion of a spaceship in the trees!! And Arnie's fab physique!

*squeeeeee*

I love it!

Friday, June 23, 2006

Friday Tease

Someone's got a new cover!

Someone's got a new cover!

I can't share it yet, but soon!

*wicked laugh*

Thursday, June 22, 2006

A Golden Nugget

Thanks to Beth Ciotta I found a new addiction here on Blogger.

Ken Levine is an Emmy winning writer/director/producer/major league baseball announcer. In a career that has spanned over 30 years Ken has worked on MASH, CHEERS, FRASIER, THE SIMPSONS, WINGS, EVERYONE LOVES RAYMOND, BECKER, and DHARMA & GREG.

This is a seriously enlightening and entertaining blog, a chance to take a peek into the mind of a true master. He's currently discussing some episodes of M*A*S*H and a hilarious trip to NYC. Check it out!

Thanks Beth!

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Still Ticking!

Ack! Have been swamped with work--someone quit and I've had to fill in some of her hours--and with the children being home. Will be back to blogging sometime. Soon. I promise!

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Don't Take My Kodachrome Away!--Part Two

During a Google search for Kodachrome lyrics, I stumbled upon Lance Mannion's Foreign Office. Do yourself a favor and read his incredible essay on sensory deprivation as it relates to the loss of--of all things--smoking. Really. Trust me. Stay with it. Just read it.

Awesome!

NY Times, Review!

Not quite, heeheehee, but they both happened on the same day.

Had a great day with good friends in the Big Apple yesterday. Went to a street fair downtown, bought great jewelry, ate great food, walked around in the great weather and ended the day with a great review for Out of This World!

Here's a snippet:

Sexy and funny, OUT OF THIS WORLD is absolutely entertaining. Arnie and Ava are made for each other; if they can let go of their preconceived notions about what they want in a mate, they might just realize it's right in front of their eyes. The dialogue often breaks into space-related terms that are usually quite funny, especially when Arnie's Saturn Five gets ready for lift-off. However, there are a few places where the context gets lost, but it doesn't detract from the interesting plot or sizzling sex these two enjoy in some very out of the ordinary places.

Secondary characters, including Arnie's friend Gabe [actually, it's Gage ;)] the groom in the upcoming wedding, and Ava's friend Lorna, the bride-to-be, play significant roles in getting these two together. There are a few other folks highly interested in Arnie and Ava, but I'll let you discover them for yourself.

For a sensual ride OUT OF THIS WORLD, look no farther than this latest from Ann Wesley Hardin.

Phillipa Ann, Romance Reviews Today

PS--I'm pretty sure I saw Sam Shepard in Union Square yesterday--hubba hubba. You want The Perfect Romance Hero, get a load of his performance as Chuck Yeager in The Right Stuff. *drool*

Anyway, was one of those double-takes where there's a powerful and distinct aura surrounding a person that makes you look twice. The guy was the spit and image, and even had similar mannerisms. Anyone know if he's doing a play right now?

*update* seems there's a Sam Shepard Festival going on downtown right now. Interestink.

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Friday, June 16, 2006

Ray-Ban-a-rama!



In 1982 I bought my first pair of black Ray-Ban Wayfarers. Even though we didn't have this phrase back then, they were da bomb in every sense of the word. Totally glam and mysterioso--harking back to the Audrey days of old Hollywood--and I felt a delirious sense of drama whenever I put them on. Which was all the time. Hey, I've got sensitive eyes--a blue so pale that from certain angles it's almost clear.

Anyway. Fast forward a decade. My beloved Wayfarers break. Unable to live without--not them--but the mystique I imagined I had when wearing them, I hightailed it to the mall to buy another pair.

For a few minutes I fantasized about owning the tortoise shell ones. But at the time, tortoise was outre and black was still da bomb, so I caved to convention. Eighty bucks worth of convention to be exact. You think that's alot of money today, imagine how much it was fourteen years ago.

But I was worth it.

Two weeks later I went skiing. In the lunch line in the lodge, I swept my glam, mysterious Ray-Bans atop my head like a headband. They promptly kept sweeping...to the other side of my head...and down. Down...

Down.

Guess what? Polycarbonate isn't unbreakable.

I was so bereft I swore off expensive sunglasses for the next fourteen years. Which brings us to today.

In the last decade-and-a-half I've probably bought at least twenty five pairs of sunglasses at ten-fifteen bucks a pop. Some have come unhinged, some have been dismembered, some have split at the nosepiece, and, most recently, some have actually peeled and shed their mock-turtle exterior. Never once have I dropped or mistreated any of these cheap pieces-o-crap. But they broke anyway.

Today I realized I've guarded my precious eyesight with unmitigated, unglamorous shit that neither improved my mood or my image, and spent a helluva lot more money than if I'd trotted my ass back to the store fourteen years ago, swallowed my fear and bought another pair of Ray-Bans.

So thatsawhatIma gonna do.

And this time, I'm goin' for the tortoise! What do you think?

A)Tortoise with gray/green lenses (a sixty-year classic)

B) or *NEW* tortoise with amber lenses (twenty bucks more)

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Don't Take My Kodachrome Away!

The past few weeks have seen multiple online author/reader spats, author/author spats, the ubiquitous author/reviewer spats, and the sorta kinda new author/reader/fangirl/rabid fangirl spats.

Oy.

Here's my stance on the whole rigamarole:

Yes, authors blabbing away endlessly online, in every available forum, about any and all aspects--good and bad--of their personal or professional lives, is a bad thing.

A verra bad thing.

Why? Because much like the tabloids do for celebrities, the Internet removes all the mystique surrounding the author (or performer--whatever the case may be) and it distracts the fan/reader/viewer from the work.

Reading books and seeing movies might be the last truly magical things we still have here on Earth. Even magician's secrets have been revealed! But the writing process--which includes movies, to me--is still magical, many times to both the reader and the author.

They give us those nice bright colors
They give us the greens of summers
Makes you think all the world's a sunny day, Oh yeah

Why would we want to take that away by spouting off and showing what a$$holes we can be sometimes? There ain't no magic in being an a$$hole.

That's not to say authors should be aloof, superior, or totally silent. Just that, in my opinion, blogs, message boards, websites and chats are part of our work.

WORK.

And in those places we need to be professional.

Ever been to a party where highly regarded co-workers get drunk and stupid? Did the personal shenanigans of certain presidents overshadow their work? Does viewing a simple photo of Britney Spears make you want to take a shower and a megadose of penicillin?

If you took all the girls I knew
When I was single
And brought them all together for one night
I know they'd never match
my sweet imagination
everything looks worse in black and white



'Nuff said.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Score!! I Broke the Four Barrier!!

Been waiting on pins and needles for the first reviews to come in for Out of This World. Can't say I was disappointed!

*happydancehappydancehappydance*

OUT OF THIS WORLD
ANN WESLEY HARDIN
ISBN#1-4199-0641-0
Ellora’s Cave Publishing
www.ellorascave.com
Futuristic
Rating: 5 Cups

Arnie Simpson, airplane mechanic and MENSA member, works in Flintlock, Wisconsin. His genius mind had been courted by NASA and other think tanks, but he wanted nothing to do with corporate America. Feeling alienated from his family and most other people because of his smarts, he stayed mostly to himself, yearning for what he did not know.

Dr. Ava Ward is winging her way to the wedding of her best friend Lorna and some much needed down time. She is looking forward to meeting the best man Arnie Simpson, since her friend practically gushed with his praises. Lorna is convinced they were meant to be together, and Ava conceded that a wedding fling would be a lot of fun.

Ava and Arnie lock stares the moment she steps foot on the tarmac in Flintlock, and ideas of a sexual nature flood both their minds, leaving them speechless. So alike and yet from different backgrounds, they begin a dizzying journey with unpredictable results. Will their ultimate union prove the theory of Fate?

Ms. Ann Wesley Hardin has written a hilarious book that will have you chuckling throughout. Arnie with his brainiac thought processes makes you want to shake some common sense into him, while Ava with her goal oriented thinking will have you wishing she would lighten up some. They both will make you fall in love with their story and I absolutely became enmeshed in it. I love Ms. Hardin’s use of imagery and her quirky sense of humor. Thank you for the trip into your mind.

~Kathy
Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance
Reviewer for Karen Find Out About New Books

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Thursday, June 08, 2006

Light of My Life

Science has discovered a direct correlation between sunlight and happiness, we all know that. What I've been thinking about today is what kind of sunlight makes me feel my best.

I've always loved fall. It's my favorite season. And a while ago I realized it's largely because of the quality of the light. At that time of year, the northern hemisphere is beginning to tilt away from the sun, and in my sky here in PA, the sun shifts south. For whatever biological/emotional reason, this kind of light makes me feel happy.

This morning I looked out the window and the sky reminded me of Seattle--where I visit my mother regularly. I immediately got that pleasure/pain of yearning in my heart. Seattle mornings are among one of my most treasured things in life. Again, largely because of the light. This got me thinking of my other favorite places, like England and Switzerland. Why did I love these areas so much? Could it be the light?

I pulled out a map and lo and behold, Seattle and Switzerland are on roughly the same latitude. England is a few degrees higher. All these places are further north than where I live, so naturally, the sun would be a bit further south in the sky--like it is here in the fall.

Well, what do you know. No wonder I yearn to be in those places! Quite simply, the position of the sun makes me feel my absolute best, most invigorated.

Most alive.

What about you? Are you happier certain times of the year, or in certain places of the world? Do you think it's because of the light?

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

**NEW** Dope of The Month Club


Hey Lois, snack time!
Oh Goody! I lurv Dope On A Rope.

KIEV (Reuters) - A man shouting that God would keep him safe was mauled to death by a lioness in Kiev zoo after he crept into the animal's enclosure, a zoo official said on Monday.

"The man shouted 'God will save me, if he exists', lowered himself by a rope into the enclosure, took his shoes off and went up to the lions," the official said.

"A lioness went straight for him, knocked him down and severed his carotid artery."

The incident, Sunday evening when the zoo was packed with visitors, was the first of its kind at the attraction. Lions and tigers are kept in an "animal island" protected by thick concrete blocks.

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When Writing is the Best Job in the World!

I spent the day orchestrating my favorite type of scene, hands down--one of those big ones where all the characters are talking at once but nobody knows what the hell is going on. Well, some of them do but they have to hide it from the others, and they make mistakes. Hilarious mistakes that make me laugh as I type.

I like to write love scenes, fer sure. But sometimes they're too hard to enjoy (no pun intended). There's too much remembering what goes where and when it's been there last, and too many metaphors and similes to create. And We won't even discuss transitions today. Uh uh. Ain't gonna go there.

So the pure joy of sitting back and writing the funny scenes, of f*cking with the characters' heads, of engineering the dialogue so that alot is said but little is understood (except by the reader) totally makes my day.

What's your favorite type of scene to write?

What Child is This?

So in my continuing effort to be a Good Mother and deposit Good Mommy Points into the bank against forthcoming therapy bills, I make breakfast every day for my daughters.

This morning I made them smoothies. Into the blender went fresh blackberries, strawberries, pineapple, vanilla yogurt and crushed ice, as well as a scoop of soy/whey protein powder.

Child number one--better known as the child I could take hiking in Nepal cuz she'd gladly try yak meat if she had to--savored the smoothie with a reverence akin to worship and practically licked the glass afterwards.

Then came child number two. The one who subsisted on Pop-Tarts and Honey Nut Cheerios for one full year of her life--to the point I started referring to the Cheerios as Purina Baby Chow.

Why should I expect anything different now?

To be fair, she savored 3/4 of the smoothie, a blissful smile on her face. Then she sat and stared at the remainder for a while and finally pushed it away. "It was good, but I don't want anymore." She got up and brought me her glass.

"Okay. I'll have it," I said, and opened the hatch for her purple backwash.

"It was good," she repeated.

I looked at her in a leading way.

"But the texture reminded me of..."

We started up the stairs to get dressed.

"...reminded me of feet. Feet with peeling skin."

Hoooooooooooookay.

Who's child is this?

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Saturday, June 03, 2006

On The Joys of Having Intellectual Friends

Author and Voice Artist Joanna Sandsmark posted this note on one of my loops a little while ago:

So I'm doing a little editing and I need a good way to say, er, sexual
intercourse, that fits the attitude of my h at that moment. "Roll in
the hay" reminds me too much of Young Frankenstein, besides being way
too old-fashioned, but I want it to be casual-sounding and purely
physical (without using the F word, which is a tad too crude). Not sure
why my mind is so blank other than it's still early for me. So I decide
to go to the Miriam-Webster online thesaurus to see if they have any
good suggestions. Not expecting much, but one never knows.

This is their definition:

sexual union involving penetration of the vagina by the penis < many
people believe that it's best to wait to experience sexual intercourse
until you're mature enough to handle it >


They don't just give you the definition -- they give you a lesson in
morals, as well! Is waiting for maturity part of the definition? Is it
a synonym? Did they get some parent or religious group breathing down
their neck because someone's little darling looking up the phrase and
learned how it was done, but not that they shouldn't do it until
they're older? Why is the dictionary giving moral lessons along with
definitions?

I found this so odd.

And the worst part is that I never found any good synonyms.


In response
, Aspiring Author and Academic Bronwyn Parry wrote:

Not only odd, but ineffective. How many teenagers are going to be put off by that statement? None.

Nope, they could have done it far more effectively using proper dictionary style ;-)

sexual intercourse (n.) sexual union involving penetration of the vagina by the penis see also juvenile sexual intercourse

juvenile sexual intercourse (n.) sexual union of teenagers involving penetration of the vagina by the penis, often resulting in any or all of (cf.) embarrassment, erectile dysfunction, chafing, disillusionment, strange rashes, pregnancy, bastard (fig.), bastard (literal), cessation of the relationship, and only occasionally in male orgasm (female orgasm is not relevant in the context of this usage), or pleasure.

See, that'd do it. No opinions, no moralising, just definitions and fact ;-)

*Ed note: I wonder what the definition of Pissing Myself would be.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Sometimes I'm really, really content to be a midlist author, toiling away without fame, fortune or, erm, rabid fangirls. Check out these blogs:

Colorful Reviews

KarenS

Jaynie

Anne

Like Sands Through the Hourglass

Cripes! I can't believe it's Thursday. Sorry people, I have nothing to say. Started the part-time day job yesterday and will be using my free days to write the new story.

Guess I'm going through a dry spell at the moment. Hopefully an infusion of real life will kick-start the blogging side of my brain and I'll have some funny stories shortly.

Catch youse later!