Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Gemini Babies

Happy Birthday to all the Gemini babies out there. I celebrated with my own Gemini this past weekend, my dear hubs, one of the only Gems I'd trust with my life. Now, don't take this the wrong way, but I've found most Gemini to be rather...duplicitous. This can be a lot of fun, but if you don't know both of their sides very, very well then you can't always be sure just how a Gemini will react in any given situation. And sometimes that can lead to danger and excitement of a variety I'd rather avoid now that I'm a mommy of three, soon to be four.

Let's look to astrology online for more Gemini wisdom:

Gemini is the third Sign of the Zodiac, and those born under this Sign will be quick to tell you all about it. That's because they love to talk! It's not just idle chatter with these folks, either. The driving force behind a Gemini's conversation is their mind. The Gemini-born are intellectually inclined, forever probing people and places in search of information. The more information a Gemini collects, the better. Sharing that information later on with those they love is also a lot of fun, for Geminis are supremely interested in developing their relationships. Dalliances with these folks are always enjoyable, since Geminis are bright, quick-witted and the proverbial life of the party. Even though their intellectual minds can rationalize forever and a day, Geminis also have a surplus of imagination waiting to be tapped. Can a Gemini be boring? Never!

Since Geminis are a mix of the yin and the yang, they are represented perfectly by the Twins. The Gemini-born can easily see both sides of an issue, a wonderfully practical quality. Less practical is the fact that you're not sure which Twin will show up half the time. Geminis may not know who's showing up either, which can prompt others to consider them fickle and restless.

This is totally my husband, though I know even his own family would probably disagree. He's a middle baby so he's often very quiet in large groups, but get him alone and the man can talk your leg off. And he is positively OCD about collecting all the facts. (You should have seen the insane research going down before we bought our mini-van.) He is also very practical and can see both sides of any issue, and no matter which of his "faces" shows up, I know he'll have a relatively level head, which is good because my head is rarely any shape even resembling level.

So what about ya'll? Do the Gemini you know fit the mold? What about other star signs, do you hold with this nonsense or think it's hippy dippy crap better off ignored?

Have a great (short, whoo hoo) work week!)

Stacey Jay

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Going to be funnier...in, um, just a bit

I made a vow yesterday--whilst reading the blog of a very fun and slightly out there mom who made me laugh until I nearly peed myself (which isn't that hard to do for a pregnant lady, but still)--to focus on life's hilarity rather than it's stumbling blocks. Three and a half years ago I had one kid and no book contracts to honor, now I have three kids (and another on the way) and six book contracts to honor. All of these things are stressful in the good way, a great way even!, but stressful nonetheless.

So a combination of stress and of being back in Arkansas where I have very little in common with 90% of the people around me--god love 'em--has contributed to making me a little...unfun at times. And pregnancy hasn't really helped. Pregnancy is rather an unfun business and a lot of hard work and a non-alcoholic beer just isn't the same reward as a nice glass of red wine at the end of a long day spent wrangling kids and deadlines. Not to mention the whole "worrying about the wellbeing of the fetus" business. I'm a worrier when it comes to really important things like....fetuses...and my kids' health and future...and whether or not I'm going to get those weird brown spots on my upper lip I had the last time I was pregnant.

But fetus worry aside, I was DETERMINED, as of four pm yesterday to embrace hilarity. To seek out the funny and to share it with those around me who might need a laugh, and then....I started feeling some weird contraction-like feelings in the woman parts, and then some other weird girl variety feelings I won't share but which made me lay awake all night staring at the ceiling swearing to the universe that I would NEVER complain about being pregnant again if this baby would just be all right. (I should know by now the universe is not real big on plea bargains, but sometimes I refuse to learn from my mistakes.)

I called my doctor this morning and asked to be seen, more for my own peace of mind than anything else as there often isn't much that can be done if things start to go south with a pregnancy. I'm waiting for the call back now and it's making me nervous and that's why I'm going to have to put off that whole embracing hilarity thing for a little bit longer.

Any good vibes will be very appreciated. I'm a big believer in the power of vibes.

Stacey Jay

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Second book slump?

This pic has nothing to do with what I'm pondering this morning, just in case you're seeking to draw parallels. I've just got this whole zombie-pic theme going on here and I'm wondering how many posts I can do without repeating any pictures. Oooo....I am so easily entertained...its sad really.

So I'm working on the second book in my adult historic urban fantasy series for Tor and I'm beginning to get a little worried. I mean, I'm enjoying writing the book even more than I did the first, but I'm not sure how a reader picking up the story as a stand alone title will feel about my heroine.

A little backstory if you will....In the first book, Heroine is a pretty tough little cookie, especially for the 18th century. She's had horrific things happen to her in her past and has dealt with her rage and grief by working as an assassin for the faeries of the night. She doesn't fall in love, doesn't really care too much about anyone--even herself--and as a consequence is rarely scared of anything. But then she meets this guy...and then this other guy...and she marries one of them and falls in love with both and she beats the BIG BAD and tries to start over in her real life where she left off a very long time ago. She feels excited and hopeful about the future even though she has this unrequited must-not-talk-about-or-my-husband-will-f
reak thing going on with guy number two. End book one.

Now we start book two, Heroine is in a much different place. There are still threats on the horizon, she's having these terrifying nightmares, her husband is sick with this mysterious illness, guy number two is creating stress, and then another BIG BAD starts slaughtering faeries and she and her men folk have to go check out what's going down. (Hard to believe I can write in a period voice reading this, isn't it? But allegedly I can...at least my editor thinks so!)

All this stress--combined with the fact that she does care very deeply about several people now and the worry for her hubs and the nightmares that are so violent and scary she can't sleep--makes her react very differently to danger than she did in book one. She gets scared, sometimes she runs before she fights, and at one point, near the end of act one, she even has a little mental come apart with some tears and Ophelia-esque freaking. I'm almost half way through the book and she has yet to kick any ass. Instead, she is sort of getting her ass kicked and has nearly died twice.

And this makes me wonder....are people going to loathe this book/heroine? I mean, the trend in urban fantasy is for tough, ass kicking chicks. I see Heroine becoming one of those again by the end of book three (though a softer, more human ass kicking chick), but to be true to the overall arc of the story, book two is kind of torturous for the poor girl. But that's really as it should be looking at the big picture. Book two is in fact act two of the bigger story, the act where everything goes wrong and we spiral toward the black moment when it looks like all is lost for our Heroine.

I plan for book two to end on a relatively hopeful and satisfying note--considering the BIG BAD from this book is still going to be on the loose in book three--but will that be enough to keep people reading?

Do you hate reading books where the hero or heroine just keeps getting the crap knocked out of them by life as long as they keep struggling against the crap? (She is fighting back, just not as effectively as she used to.)

I have curiosity, I have shown you it.

Stacey Jay

Thursday, May 15, 2008

I can haz new contract?

Yes, I can haz new contract!!!

My second young adult zombie novel, presently entitled "Boy Eats Girl", was recently acquired by Andrew Karre of Flux books. I had the chance to chat with him on the phone last summer and he seems totally cool, so I'm very, very excited to work with him on this project.

"Boy Eats Girl" is set in the same world as "You are So Undead to Me", but from a completely different perspective. The heroine is actually a zombie instead of a zombie Settler and ends up going to a top secret school for the Undead (one that the Settlers from "You are So Undead to Me" aren't aware of...but of which they might soon learn, should I get to write another book).

Here's the one sentence blurb thingie I sent the agent yesterday:

A high school freshman falls from the top of her cheer pyramid straight into a new way of life--or death--as the newest kid at DEAD high, a school for zombies where danger of the brain-eating variety lurks behind every corner.

Whee! I had so much fun writing this partial, i can't wait to finish it up.

Hope you all are having a fantastic week,

Stacey Jay

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Mother's Day...a look back

I think all we moms have dreams of receiving a card like this one for mother's day. A card that praises our awesome mom-ness and makes us feel appreciated for all the work we do the other 364 days a year (or 365 in this case as it is a leap year).

But it doesn't always work out that way. Now thirteen wrote me a kick ass poem, but nine, the kid who puts me through my paces on a daily basis, forgot me completely and four is far away visiting his biological father (we're a blended family....that's what they're calling them these days...blended...like, someone stuck a bunch of fruit together and agitated it until it exploded all over the walls). So needless to say, I felt a little let down. I mean, I know being a mom is a largely thankless job and I certainly didn't appreciate all my mom did for me until I had a little ankle biter of my own, but my precious little feelings were still a little hurt.

Then I got to thinking about my hubs and the yummy cheesecake he'd purchased (perfect for those rabid preggers sweet cravings) and the nice card, not to mention the living dead dolls on their way in the mail (omg, they are dolls that look like zombies! SO disturbing, yet SO cool, I will take pictures and post them here as soon as they arrive) and I realized I had it pretty good. Of all the people in the world to go out of their way to show me how much my mom efforts mean to them, the father of my fourth child is a pretty darn good one.

He sure is a keeper, and I'm lucky to have him.

Love you hubs!!

Stacey Jay

Thursday, May 8, 2008

You better run 13...


ME: Coach really shouldn't be standing in the middle of the street. Some other mini van mom might run him down. We're crazy like that you know...once we get behind the wheel of the family van...

13: Yeah, totally crazy. Especially the pregnant ones.

ME: I heard that, and I won't forget it.

13: Whatever. I know you won't forget. Elephants never forget.

ME: *stunned silence, mentally giving mad props to 13 for her ability to whip out the quick pregnant lady insulting comebacks before eight in the morning*

13: You know....elephants... (she prods, not willing to risk the chance her hormone foggy and caffeine deprived stepmother had missed her sarcastic brilliance.)

ME: Oh, I get it. And it's on, girl. Just be ready.

13: *evil laughter as she gets out of car...obviously not at all afraid of the verbal abuse of a woman who forgets what day it is*

So that was my morning. I really couldn't be prouder if she'd sprung from my own loins. Apparently smart ass is a trait that can be passed on without the benefit of shared genes.

Now...I just have to plot my revenge. Since my mind's not as sharp as it used to be due to the dulling effect of gestation, I'll have to come up with something else. As the tender of the never-ending laundry, I'm thinking about shrinking all her underwear :)

Happy Thursday all!

Stacey Jay

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

I'm baacckkk, and website revamp

Very true...I would feel sad. Very, very sad.

I'm back from my trip, and already hard at work on new things. I'm starting the second book in my historic urban fantasy series for Tor and that will be eating up the next few months, but before I buried myself in the 18th century I carved out a day to devote to spiffying up my Stacey Jay website. I had way too much fun googling zombie stuff for my fun page. I've got some kick ass stuff on there now--if I do say so myself--and I didn't even use all the goodies I found. (I've got a pattern for knitting little yarn zombies that I'm keeping all for myself. I've been jonesing for some knitting time lately, what with all the preggers hormones swimming around in my bloodstream and all, so I think a zombie yarn friend is exactly what's on the agenda. My hubs was expecting a baby blanket or something, but please man, I don't have the patience to make an entire blanket, and zombies are more fun :).).

So go check out the new digs if you've got a second: http://staceyjay.com

I've also got an updated author bio page, a new "for writers" page, and a little excerpt from "You are So Undead to Me"--which might be coming out even earlier than I was initially told. It might be a March 09 baby, instead of an April one. But that's not confirmed yet so don't quote me.

Have a great Tuesday!

Stacey Jay

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Checking in from California

I'm on vacation and so far it's been lovely. Very restful and I can feel the creative juices starting to flow again. I'm also starting to have a LOT more energy as the first trimester exhaustion fades away.

So now I'm beginning to think website pimpage. I've collected a bunch of zombie tunes and I'm going to make an itunes mix to post on my site (as soon as I can figure out the nuts and bolts of how to make that happen), and then get to work linking to friends. If you'd want to exchange links please post a comment and your web addy and I'll get you on my weblinks page in a few days.

My site addy is staceyjay.com....like if anyone wants to link to me too :).

Have a great end of your week!

Stacey Jay