Writing Research Has Never Been So Fun

Last night, my hubby took me out to a movie and dinner--yes, in that order. We were having dinner at about 10:45. :-D anyway, we bought tickets for the 7:20 showing of CASINO ROYALE, the James Bond/Ian Fleming movie. The guy that checked our ticket (are print-ahead tickets not the best so you don't stand in line for 20 minutes??) and said, Right here in this line. So, we got in line. Guess what? He put us in the 8pm line. *sigh* naerly an hour of theater previews and commercials (is anyone else irked that now you have to view COMMERCIALS at the theater????). Anyway, Casino Royale was great. A typical Ian Fleming book come to life.

My assessment of the movie: This movie of how James Bond became a double-o-seven. Quite interesting. What I didn't like about this movie:

  1. The super-duper-ultra long card game. Granted, it's the whole culmination of the movie, but it was WAY long. Totally saw the ending (of the game) coming, so it lost its UMPH.
  2. The actress who played Vesper Lind (the heroine). She just didn't pull me. Didn't create in me an emotional tug that made me care for her. From the get-go, I was suspicious of her.
  3. Edgier--and by this I mean it was much more like an action flick than an Ian Fleming/Barbara Broccoli film. Craig's first take down was much more violent than Bond normally is, but again, that was his first kill, so maybe it's explained that way.
  4. The opening scene. You know what I'm talking about--where usually there are ghosted outlines of naked women. Well, this one was all about cards, but it was Craig's ghosted image constantly fighting, shooting...not the suave, debonair stuff we're used to.
  5. The Casino Royale theme song. Again, they deviated a bit too much from the norm. The music had a great beat, but just didn't fit the Bond-genre.
Things I liked about this movie:
  1. Romantic interludes are classic James Bond - more inuendos than flesh. :-D
  2. This is the closest I've seen Bond come to death. GREAT scene in my opinion. I'd love to capture something like this in my books.
  3. The car. LOL It's an Aston Martin (hey, Robin-Neen-Ron--it's the same car I have Everett Douglass driving and I nearly squealed to see that baby in motion!!). LOL
  4. The opening scene in Uganda (I think that's where it was--or was that the terrorists) where Bond is chasing this dude and they take to the construction site where they end up at the top of a crane. I'm telling y'all, this guy Bond is chasing has super-human powers. He did things that I thought for sure would kill your average joe. LOL
  5. The ending. Classic James Bond, where he (for the first time in Ian Fleming's books) says, Bond, James Bond. :-D Gotta love that line.
  6. Daniel Craig. Okay, I wasn't sure I'd like this guy, but he pulled it off brilliantly. Through the movie, I never stopped once to wonder if I liked him, which I'd expected to do.
  7. Edgier. LOL Laughing? Well, again, I wasn't sure if I liked the edginess, but it definitely added in some scenes.
  8. Bond gets poisoned. I mentioned this where he nearly dies--and I loved that "human" aspect to this amazing hero, but I loved the whole sequence where he's trying to save himself. Totally loved that.
Of course, it really got my "creative juices" super-charged. :-D I'm just ITCHING to get writing again. I got snagged off on a tangent while Brian and I discussed the movie over salads, thinking about one of my secondary characters, Tony DeLuca, in Midnight Zone. This guy has started talking to me, telling me things. Interestingly enough, Tony looks like Daniel Craig--blonde hair, blue eyes. I realized last night that I can see myself totally writing a book for him. I was sitting there, this scene running through my mind, and Brian laughed. I'd apparently zoned out and he could see it in my eyes. LOL That's sad. . .nah, that's the life of a writer.

So, what research have you done that feuled you for writing???

I'm running for ACFW Volunteer Officer

Well, after careful thought, consideration and prayer, I've decided to run for Volunteer Officer with the American Christian Fiction Writers. This certainly was not an easy decision to make, and I'm sure I'm up against some wonderful people--and that's great! As Robin has said before, the more people running, the more options for ACFW membership to have. I agree completely. For me, I've loved ACFW since I joined in 2004 and knew even then, that someday I'd like to serve the organization filled with loving, caring people. At the end of 2005, I agreed to serve as a moderator, and that position began officially in January 2006. This last year taught me a lot about the various duties of the moderators and the List Hostess, as I've carried out the various duties. In December, I will graduate with my B.S. in Psychology (a long haul I am so glad is almost over!!), and my graduation will free up a great majority of my time. I still homeschool my two older daughters while my twins (who have tendencies toward Asperger's) attend public school and receive special education services there. My husband, Brian, is a breath away from being accepted into the FBI (who'd have thought 2.5 seconds could cost us 6 months of training??). LOL He'll most likely take the physical fitness test again in November, possibly early December. We would appreciate your prayers for that.

Well, last night, I did something I haven't done in several months--I stayed up past 1 a.m. writing!! It felt great to be so completely immersed in my story that I lost track of time. It's amazing to me that I've only "known" these characters for roughly 2-3 weeks, but I'm able to write them as though we've spent years together. It's quite an interesting tale of an assassin, a guardian, an old man, a scrawny boy nicknamed Twig, and a girl. So, tell me?

Have you ever been so immersed in a story you've written that you lost track of time and sensibility (to get to bed on time!!)??? :-D Drop me a note--I'd love to hear what you're working on now!

Rachel Hauck - Lost in NashVegas

Last week, I stocked groceries in Freedom, Alabama. This week, I live in Nasvhille, Tennessee, about to take the stage at the famous Bluebird Cafe.

Sounds fantastic, doesn't it? Only one problem. I've got stage fright. But after years of being ruled by fear and hiding from my dream, I confronted my limited reality and left home. Forget the hometown hunk who wants to make me queen of his doublewide. Forget Momma's doubt-inspiring tirade. I can make it in Music City...can't I?
So, I took a leap of faith, gathered my old guitar, my notebook full of songs, and packed up in '69 Chevy pickup. Look out NashVegas! With the help of some new friends, especially handsome Lee Rivers, my dream is about to find the light of day. But as I face my first night at the Bluebird Cafe, I realize...I might just do what comes naturally. Look for the nearest exit, and run!

So reads the backcover copy of Rachel Hauck's fabulous new release, Lost in NashVegas. Right now, there are several sites involved in Rachel's blog tour. I encourage you to check them out and see what the rave is all about. Here are a some fans high-lighting this book:

Robin Carroll
Buddy Hollywood
Novel Review
Deidre Knight (Rachel guest blogs)
Marilyn Griffith (Rachel guest blogs)
Novel Journey (November 1, 2006 entry)
Betsy Ann

Rush on over to Amazon and buy this book for your next cuddle-up-good-book read!!

WINNER of Tricia Goyer's book...

is Dona Watson. Congratulations on winning this really kewl book, Dona. If you'll take a moment to send me your address, I'll get this book in the mail!!


Now--for this week's FREE BOOK -- DARK HOUR, book one of the Serpent Moon Trilogy by Ginger Garrett. I confess I have not read this book, but NavPress was so very kind to send two (I won one from Lena Dooley's blog), so I'm spotlighting it briefly to bless someone else. the back of this book reads: "One of the darkest and bloodiest stories of all time comes not from a medieval battelfield but from inside one of the most opulent palaces ever built. The strategies come not from men eager to extend their influence but from women bent on exercising their wit and prowess in a kingdom not their own. Treason and murder are fair game. Marriage is manipulation, a means to an end. Children are the enemy. and the days of the House of David are numbered--unless one woman can find the strength to conquer them all."

WOWZERS~! doesn't that sound wonderful? I know I plan to dig into this book very soon. So, drop a comment if you'd like to be entered into the book for a free drawing. And since I'm not "officially" promoting this book, I'm going to cheat a bit and link here to Neen's online chapter/interview for Dark Hour.


It's been a busy week since I last posted. My revisions on MZ are finished, and I mailed them off to the agent Monday evening. He should have them by week's end. I admit that I'm scared. I mean, he wanted a satisfying ending. Well, I'm not sure about you, but what's satisifying to me may not be satisfying to you or to someone else. Ya know? I like my ending. It's the way **I** wanted it and originally wrote it. But what if the agent doesn't like the rewrite? Where does that leave me? You're probably saying, send it to another agent. Well, I have sent it to all the ones that I've been able to get my foot in the door with. So, if you know someone... LOL

My entire publishing career (can I call it that, yet??) is in God's hands. Come rain or shine, I will praise Him.

Whoa. Got to rambling, didn't I? :-D Sorry. Which reminds me...I'm starting a new space opera. What's amazing to me is how *easily* I can write the space operas. The spy thrillers, well that takes research, research, research, not to mention how HARD they are to write. But these space operas just ignite me. I love writing them. They come as natural to me as breathing. I'm getting bold (Stuart would be proud of me LOL) this time--using a non-human creature. Tis a bold step for this gal. It has a Protector , a gifted girl, a gangly youth, an old man (think Gandalf), and a secret assassin. One of them is the Lost Heir to a kingdom that is under foreign control. As they make the treacherous journey across enemy territory, can they survive predators, including the secret assassin who must kill the heir once discovered?