Project Purse Dump with Paula Tiberius

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I never used to carry a purse. While my high school, then university compadres mooned over their new Coach bags and fished around for keys for half an hour, I always had cash in my front right pocket, one slim key in my left back pocket, and whatever lipstick I had on when I left the house was good enough for the night.

Now?

Nov 27 - Paula Tiberius

  1. My wallet – a freakin’ wallet, people. I’m a grown-up.
  2. Sunscreen. I live in Los Angeles and my husband Richard has had five skin cancers removed so far. This is the only kind that doesn’t feel oily. If you’re reading this, Neutrogena, I am looking for sponsors on my blog.
  3. Rice Krispies treat – this is “for Violet” (my 7 year old daughter) when “she” gets cranky in the car.
  4. Two pens stolen from my credit union, an over-sized My-Pal pencil (because sometimes you just don’t want the finality of a pen), a Sharpie (because sometimes things can’t be indelible enough),one pen from The Pleasure Chest (because I cover sex seminars there for Sexpert.com), and a pen from an Australian hotel – that’s right, I went to Australia. I’m a grown up with a purse.
  5. TWO travel tissue packs, because one would leave me quite insecure.
  6. A GO train receipt from my visit to Toronto in June. It’s now September.
  7. A red button. Thinking, thinking….it’ll come to me.
  8. A metal mesh turtle pendant without a chain. Don’t you have one in your purse?
  9. Migraine meds. I used to leave them at home thinking that it was bad juju to carry headache medicine when you don’t have a headache. But then I kept getting headaches while out in the world with my giant purse that had no medication in it.
  10. A one-time-use-only toothbrush. I know I’m married with a kid, but I might still have a one-night-stand at some point. You never know. Actually I stole it from a spa in Palm Springs last weekend.
  11. Two plastic stencil sheets. I picked them out from a counter full of crap to redeem points at an arcade. My daughter Violet was dead set against them, but I remain certain that she will change her mind. Stencils rock.
  12. A green feather from the boa Violet wore at her rock and roll camp performance this summer. She borrowed it from her father who wears it in our band Fame Whore. Yes, we’re setting an excellent example.
  13. Ear buds. You can’t talk on the phone without them in your car, and I’m always in my car.
  14. Red lip gloss that my friend Tara gave me about six months ago when I was feeling really, really shitty and broke, overworked and underpaid. She told me that it was the “lip gloss of abundance,” which seems to have worked, actually. Now I’m afraid to throw it out even though its fuzzy wand is drying up.
  15. An Always mini-pad. I pay extra for the black box kind because I like to have stylish cardboard in my bathroom cabinet.
  16. A tester tube of double-helix water cream, given to me by a medical intuitive who channels angels. He is awesome and so is this cream. I’m putting it on my C-section scar to see if it helps it disappear.
  17. Matches. I don’t smoke, but my husband does. Also, I used to be a pyromaniac.
  18. A packet of salt. Don’t listen to people who say salt is bad for you. It makes everything better.
  19. Pink and red paper clips tied together in a chain. I grabbed them for a parent teacher board meeting and did not use them.
  20. Orange bauble hair tie. I used to hate this kind when I was a kid. I wonder if Violet hates them too? I should ask her.
  21. Big black hair clip. That’s the shit you want.
  22. A coupon for a free cupcake at Barnes & Noble – now expired.

Award-winning writer/director Paula Tiberius entertains at www.paulatiberius.com

She’s also an editor at Sexpert.com, a site which offers education and entertainment about sex and relationships.

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Project Purse Dump, Terri L. Austin’s Sugar de la Tarte

Nov 20 - Terri L Austin -  HeadshotTerri L. Austin visits today for Project Purse Dump.

Her character, Sugar de la Tarte  dumps her purse and I have to say, I love it!

Take it away, Sugar.

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Hey, everybody! I’m Sugar de la Tarte. As a retro pin up girl and burlesque performer, I keep a few essentials in my bag at all times. I never know when someone might recognize me, so I like to look my best!

Here’s my favorite bag. Doesn’t this just scream Sugar?purse

lipstick

Since I love my deep red lips, I wouldn’t be caught dead without a tube of Mac Red.

 

 

 

 

So what else do I keep in my sweet little cosmetic bag?

 

cosmeticbag

compact

My compact, natch. Who wants to walk around with a shiny nose?

Not me, honey.

And of course I can’t leave home without my pasties.Believe me, carrying these around along with my pastie glue has saved my bacon more than once.

 

Since I got inked—isn’t she lovely—I need to have a tube of sunscreen on hand. I don’t want this beauty to fade.

tat

phone

 

Last but not least, I carry my phone, but I had to bling out my case. In my world, presentation is everything!

 

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You can catch more of Sugar de la Tarte inDiner Knock Out—a Rose Strickland Mystery by Terri L. Austin at Amazon or Barnes. 51Mu0wArt1L._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_

 

And check out Terri’s newest book!

Nov 20 - Terri L Austin -  HKoT

Monica Campbell may have a history as a wild child, but she’s changed her ways. She’s respectable, responsible-and, most importantly, she’s sworn off bad boys. That is, until Callum Hughes roars back into her life with his sexy British accent and killer smile.

Cal remembers every steamy moment he shared with Monica, but he barely recognizes the straight-laced woman she’s become. Determined to lure Monica into letting go of her inhibitions, Cal will use every trick he knows to fire her blood and tempt her body…reminding her
just how good it can feel to be bad-and his.

Beauty and the Brit:
His Every Need
His Kind of Trouble
His to Keep (Pre-order)

Project Purse Dump– The Artist Cherry Tucker via Larissa Reinhart

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Today on Project Purse Dump, Larissa Reinhart gives us some insight into her character, Cherry Tucker.

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Nov 06 - IMG_1814 - Larissa ReinhartFirst off, I don’t carry a purse. I’ve got too much to haul around and generally if I’m not at an art gig, I carry beer money in my pocket, which is all I really need. I know I live in Georgia and most girls add a touch of lipstick before heading to the Piggly Wiggly or the Tru-Buy, but I’m not most girls. I might have a few smudges of oil or acrylics on my person anyway, so why dress that up with lipstick?

My name is Cherry Tucker and I live in Halo, Georgia. I like to think of myself as ten times tougher than I look. My height, blonde hair, and cornflower blue eyes don’t help me none. I’m a portrait artist, so where I’m not paying attention to how I look (except for my clothes, I do love to create my own outfits), I am paying attention to how you look. For example, what color would I mix to capture your eyes or what the contrast of light is doing to the angles of your cheekbones. And if you’re a guy, I’ll check out your muscle definition, if you have any. Purely for professional reasons, of course.

Nov 06 - IMG_1813 - Larissa ReinhartThat’s why you can see I always carry a sketch book and pencils. And brushes. Sometimes paint, but generally I keep that in my tackle box. Measuring tape’s always handy. Duct tape, too. I’ve been hog tied and duct taped (don’t ask), so I like to carry my own. And they’ve got some colorful ones, now.

Band Aids and Motrin. More necessities of my lifestyle. Particularly if you do get hog tied and duct taped.

Nov 06 - IMG_1811 - Larissa ReinhartAnd if I do need to clean up, I’m ready with the lipstick and some jewelry. I’ve got a bullet ring and pistol earrings that are good for any occasion. Nail polish comes in handy for all sorts of things. For example, if you drive a rusty, old truck, when you see a new spot, just dab it with some polish. Works wonders for holding the truck together and you can fix your nails real quick, too.

Thanks for your interest! This was a great chance to clean out my bag. I found a lot of empty shot gun shells. Don’t know why I’ve been carrying them around, but now I’m thinking they could make Christmas ornaments.

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Nov 06 - closeup - Larissa ReinhartA 2015 Georgia Author of the Year Best Mystery finalist, Larissa writes the Cherry Tucker Mystery series. The first in the series, PORTRAIT OF A DEAD GUY (2012), is a 2012 Daphne du Maurier finalist, 2012 The Emily finalist, and 2011 Dixie Kane Memorial winner. The fifth mystery, THE BODY IN THE LANDSCAPE, releases December 2015. Her family and Cairn Terrier, Biscuit, now live in Nagoya, Japan, but still call Georgia home.

The fifth book in the Cherry Tucker Mystery series, The Body in the Landscape, is available for preorder now. You can find Cherry Tucker here: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, iBooks.

LINKS:

http://larissareinhart.com/

http://www.facebook.com/RisWrites

http://www.twitter.com/RisWrites

http://instagram.com/larissareinhart

http://pinterest.com/LarissaReinhart/

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5806614.Larissa_Reinhart

A Red Letter Day

Several years ago, one of my dearest friends, Jill Odom, revealed she had written a romance novel. I was astounded and excited for her. For years I had written stories, but it never went further than forcing sharing them with friends. Shaking, terrified of her hating my story, I showed it to her. She smiled, patted my hand, and said, “Come, follow me.”

She led me to an fantastic group of writers, Southern Magic, RWA. These amazing women (and a few men!) meet monthly to help each other learn the craft, share experiences, offer advice, and navigate the choppy waters of publishing. They pick me up when I’m down, talk me off the ledge when frustrated, and cheer my milestones. They epitomize my favorite saying, Book Friends are Best Friends. I’m honored to be associated with these talented folks. They are my book family. If you’re just starting out, I encourage you to find a group like mine. Writing can be a lonely business, but it doesn’t have to be. You are not alone.

When I first joined Southern Magic, I perused every link the website offered. They have a list of members. Those who are published are listed in red. I clicked on every single author link. And I dreamed…

Today, my dream came true. My name is in red. I’m humbled and grateful.

My advice for new writers.

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I’ve had a few people ask me how I got started writing. Quite frankly, I was bored with television. I was a young mom with a small child and a husband who worked 3-11. I had written angsty stories as a teenager, but decided to try my hand at romance writing, thinking  it would be easy. After all, I took English in high school and college. I read voraciously.

Wrong.

It isn’t easy and I had a LOT to learn. I dabbled for a few years, but real life interrupted and I had to return to work full time. Writing was shoved aside for over ten years until I found out a dear friend had published a romance novel. I was amazed and in awe. I timidly mentioned I had tried writing a few years back. She took me under her wing and helped me. I wouldn’t be sitting this close to being published without Jill Odom.

Next, I joined my local Romance Writers Of America chapter, Southern Magic. I was terrified and intimidated entering my first meeting. I mean there were AUTHORS there! (yeah, I know, DUH) But, authors are my rock stars. I’ve always loved reading. I had fangirled over many of these remarkable women at the annual Readers Luncheon. Why would they want me there? I didn’t belong. I wasn’t published, I didn’t even know where to begin.

I think this is a common fear for most new writers. We’re scared we don’t belong with “published” authors. We’re terrified of being humiliated. Let me tell you a little secret. Yes, pull in closer, I’m going to whisper this. Guess what?

Authors are readers, too.

Yep, that’s the big secret. Authors loved books way before they wrote one single word. We all started right where you are today.

So start by putting an idea down on paper. Will every single word remain? Nope. Will your first book be published? It happens, but not often. Some things you write will never see the light of day.

Here is my step by step advice.

1. Write. Every. Damn. Day. Even if it is just one sentence. Sentences become paragraphs. Paragraphs become pages. Pages become chapters. Chapters become books.

2. Do Nanowrimo when it comes around in November. If you are a plotter, start plotting now. If you’re a pantser like I am, well, just go for it when it rolls around. (although you might want to at least get an outline done) Nanowrimo is a community of like minded folks who want to write. They challenge you to complete 50,000 words in the month of November. It’s a great motivator. They even send you cheer-leading type emails to encourage you as you write. Plus, it gets you in the habit of writing every day.

3. Hook up with other writers. Join writer associations like Romance Writers of America. Friend them on Nanowrimo. Friend authors on social media. Most believe in paying it forward. We wouldn’t be here without the help of others.

4.  Ask questions, even if you think they are silly. I guarantee someone else has wondered the same thing.

5. Take classes. Community colleges. RWA classes, other writing venues. Most classes I’ve attended were reasonable or free.

6. Enter contests. I can’t stress this enough. Where else for $15-30 can you get professional critiques? I promise, asking your friends is nice, but usually not helpful. They are either so brutally honest you quit writing, or they fangirl over stuff they hate because they don’t want to hurt your feelings. Contests give you honest opinions from non-biased writers.

Does some of the critique hurt? Absolutely. I still have not re-visited the manuscript that got these comments. “I have to admit if this was anything but a contest entry I would not have read far into the story.” OUCH. I admit, I cried over that one. Here’s another. “I didn’t connect with the hero or heroine.” WHAT? HOW COULD YOU NOT LOVE MY BABIES?! *insert loud wailing and gnashing of teeth* And the parting comment: “I would have no interest in reading anymore.” Yep. More tears shed. (I plan to revisit this manuscript someday. I still love those characters. However, I won’t worry if it isn’t salvageable, not everything we write is.)

However, let me point out this was my first contest entry. It scored 49/100. What did I do after that critique? Did I hang up my “pen” so to speak? Hell, no. I  decided I’d prove to myself I could write. I took classes. I entered more contests. I found critique partners. I continued to WRITE. EVERY. DAMN. DAY.

Don’t worry if you enter a contest and get a bad score. Sure, it might feel like a failure, but it isn’t. Did you hear that? IT IS NOT A FAILURE. Because here’s the thing, the lower the score, generally, the better the critique.

The comments above? Did they hurt. Of course they did. Maybe she could have phrased things a little “nicer.” But, the judge explained why she didn’t like my entry. At various points she showed me where/how to improve it. The judges that just give 5/5 or 4/5 on everything, rarely make comments. To me, while it is flattering, it isn’t helpful. I WANT and NEED the explanations and advice. That’s how I learn.

Enter contests. I promise, your writing will improve. I kept at it. (See the picture above, those are all contest entries from 2013-2014) My scores improved, but usually I’d score high with two judges and bomb with one. I finally decided it wasn’t too bad, I meant two out of three people liked my stories! And again, the judge that hated it gave the best critique. Judges are not the enemy. Most of them are writers. They know what you’re going through and they want you to improve. So learn from them.

And yes, I finally placed and won in a category. My husband swears his hearing problems are the result of my scream of excitement. Did the final judge (who are usually editors and agents) ask for it? No… but someone else did.

Saving Evangeline will be published next month with Omnific Publishing!

Hang in there. Dreams do come true, as long as you work for it.