Ye Olde Crush


I was watching a little Sunday afternoon TV last week and stumbled upon some sitcom re-runs. I was a bit astonished to find there was a guy in every show I’d once thought was hot. Perhaps there’s something wrong with me… you decide.

Happy Days: The Fonz

When he used to give that juke box a smooth tap my toes used to curl. Yes I know. I thought Henry Winkler was dreamy. I maintained my devotion for many years… until Chachie came on the scene. Hubba hubba. Move over Joanie.

Cheers: Sam Malone

 He’s not a spectacularly good looking man, I could even see that at the time. But he had something about him that I really liked. Perhaps it was because he was tall and I’m not. Could have been the slightly weird way he walked with those long loping strides. Or maybe it was that hint of thick russet fuzz that always seemed to poke out the top of his polo shirts. All I know was that I cheered when he finally got rid of that crazy Dianne.

Family Ties: Alex P Keaton

Talk about going from the long to the short of it. Michael J Fox was soooo cute as Alex, I just wanted to eat him up. I still remember all the girlfriends he went through—a young Courtney Cox, the woman who went on to be his wife, Tracey Pollan. I just sat there in front of the tube, dreamily wondering when it would be my turn. Sigh.

Mork & Mindy: Mork

Now I’ve gone off the deep end I know. It wasn’t Robin Williams you understand, although I do love a funny guy and might even forgive the hairest back around for a good gufaw. It was Mork. He was from another planet and I thought his innocence about the complexity of human morality was endearing. Plus I thought the egg ship rocked, I so wanted one.

Who’s the Boss: Tony Minetti

An Italian from the wrong side of town who cooks and is comfortable enough in his masculinty to work for a woman? Be still my beating heart.

Have a great weekend,


Five Awards


It seems lately everyone has been getting nominated for awards.  Oh, let’s just point to the elephant in the room and call it an elephant: all the divas with the notable exception of one (cough, splutter) have been nominated for something. Ah yeah, I AM that notable exception. Oh right well I haven’t actually published anything this past year, that does make it a little difficult to be considered for competitions and such. And my diva counterparts are pretty awesome so what are ya gonna do, huh?

Congratulate them, that’s what. And drink a glass of wine for each nomination (hic). Congrats to Lexxie, Rhian and Jess for being nominated (multiple times) in the Australian Romance Readers Awards. Woohoo! Have fun at the awards dinner later this month… I won’t be there, sniff. No need for sympathy though, I’ll be fine. Where is that wine now?

In honor of my friends’ success, I thought I’d give out a few awards myself. A few people in the news deserve them I think.

  • Charlie Sheen gets the Biting the Hand that Feeds him award for issuing a bizarre public tirade against his hit show’s creator, during wish he wished him ‘nothing but pain’ and theorised that he could destroy the man with his ‘fire breathing fists’. O-kay. Charlie also gets the Pot Calling the Kettle Black award for advising Lindsey Lohan just a couple of weeks ago to  work on her impulse control. Hey kids, just say no to drugs, okay?
  • The Oh Not Another Misogynist Being Rewarded for his Inbred Hatred award goes to Eminem. Hey mate, we get it. You hate hos and bitches, they’re all out ta getcha and should go straight to hell should they, say, NOT LIKE YOU or perhaps ask you to stop taking drugs and hitting them.  Please stop singing songs about burning women in houses, it’s creepy.
  • Steve Martin deserves the Great Unchangeable Face award. I watched Planes Trains and Automobiles the other week and It’s Complicated this week. He looked almost exactly the same in each film. The benefit of going grey young?
  • The award for Internet Ingenuity goes to Samhain Publishing. Their new website’s banner changes every week, not just the book covers, but the whole design. It’s wicked.
  • Sucking up to the Favorite Publisher award? Ah, that would be me. Look at that, I got something after all!


The Big Finale


Sometimes writing a book is a real struggle. Scrap that—at all times, writing a book is a real struggle. Some days it’s a struggle


 authors enjoy in a perverse kind of way. Other days it’s sheer hell. We all at one time or another (and another and another) wonder why in God’s name we continue doing it.

Then we have a day when we actually finish a story, something we’re actually happy with (well, as happy as a writer can ever be with their own work :)). Ah, we think. That’s why we do it.

On Thursday night I finally typed THE END on my current WIP, the culmination of almost two years of writing struggles. There were times I wondered if I’d ever finish anything again, so this completion is particularly special for me. And I’m celebrating it.

Premature, perhaps, because it hasn’t yet been critiqued, let alone submitted or accepted. But I’ve decided to pat myself on the back sooner rather than later. After all, it’s the hard work of writing the damn book that is the real achievement, not publication or rave reviews. Not that we don’t like those things. It’s just that I’ve grown to believe we really ought to congratulate ourselves on doing the work for the work’s sake, and treat everything else as gravy. Otherwise our pride in our writing achievements is dependant on the reaction of others, something we can’t control. Who wants to rely on someone else for their own self-worth?

So what am I going to do? Watch A Single Man, because I’ve wanted to for ages and I haven’t gotten around to it yet, make a dent in my ever-growing TBR pile and buy myself a new ipod. Yes, I’m nerdy even in celebration mode :). Oh okay, I might have a few glasses of wine over the weekend too.

So what do you do when you want to treat yourself?


The Politics of Prophylactics


I was reading a novel a little while back and was totally jarred out of the story when in the third chapter the couple had unprotected sex. This after they’d met only 24 hours before. The conversational exchange went something like this:

Him: I don’t have protection

Her: It doesn’t matter. I’m safe.

Him: I’m safe too… are you sure?

Her: I have to have you in me—now!

Er, WTF??? You know someone less than a day and a mumbled ‘no I don’t have any of those STD things baby’ is going to pass for protection? Not in my universe.

This whole thing got me thinking about how we handle the issue of contraception/protection in romance novels. I’ve been reading contemporaries for a long time (think back to those harlequin temptations with the yellow back covers and the swooning women in tafetta on the front) and I think the progression has gone something like this:

  1. Not mentioned at all for fear of ruining the fantasy element of the love scene. Protagonists didn’t make love until they’d already established they were in love, anyway.
  2. Protection sometimes mentioned, only ever by the hero. Heroine was too much of a ‘good girl’ to even know what those things were for, let alone to know where to buy them.
  3. A mutual discussion might have taken place, with the hero being ultimately responsible for providing the necessary equipment.
  4. Heroines knew what they were, how to use them and where to buy them. This is probably about the time condom companies started bringing them out in all those pretty colours. 
  5. Present day – unprotected sex is rarely seen in a smart, contemporary romance novel (except when an unplanned for pregnancy is needed as a plot device. Not my favourite plot turn, BTW, but good on you if it’s your thing). Responsibility can be taken by either or both parties.

I’m glad that we’ve reached number five. It always bugged me when I was reading my romances back in the day and the couple got ‘swept away’, particularly if the hero was a bit of a playboy. I thought the heroine was mad to trust him, but that could be me. I’m a ‘go get a blood test and give me the paperwork’ kind of girl.

A few years ago I attended a day long workshop conducted by Jennifer Crusie for hundreds of rapt RWA members. During the course of discussions she mentioned she thought it was a bit skeevy for a guy to carry a condom in his wallet. I had a mini-debate with her about it at the time (I so should not be allowed in the front row of anything). The way I see it, if we’re at point five in the politics of prophylactics, someone has to handle protection. If it’s sleazy for the man to have them on his person, what about if a woman carries them in her purse? Is this totally unacceptable? And if no-one carries them, there’s less of a chance they’ll be used, isn’t there? Isn’t making sure they’re used more important than what someone will think of you being in possession of them?

The things that occupy my thoughts. Anyone else want to weigh in on this vital issue?



Five More Reasons Life is Not a Romance Novel


  1. No romance novel heroine ever has a truly boring job. No mind-numbing days stuck in a grey cubicle ticking boxes, moving paper from one side of the desk to another. Oh no. They’re all wedding coordinators or reporters or owners of quaint little bookshops frequented by impossibly sexy men looking for an out of print orginal novel for their much loved mother.
  2. In romance novels, chubby girls are always irresistibly voluptuous to even the most gorgeous, hard-bodied stud around. The problem of her lack of fitness never seems to come up, nor does the possibility he’ll meet a Biggest Loser trainer at the gym while his lady love is at home in her porky pig pajamas, eating cookie dough ice-cream and watching While You Were Sleeping for the fiftieth time.
  3. Nothing hurts in romance land except a broken heart. Virgins feel no pain, soap causes no irritation when rubbed over sensitive places and perpetual erections are seen as a sexy little bonus, not a severe medical condition in need of treatment.
  4. Romance novel heroes never picture Jennifer Aniston while making it with their lady loves and heroines never compose mental to do lists during coitus. Err, not that women do that in real life either…
  5. Romance novel heroes have a serious aversion to coming in a woman’s mouth. “Oh baby, you don’t have to do that

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(cover mock ups from world of longmire)


Sami’s Week

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Goal: finish manuscript for tentatively titled Erica’s Choice and have ready for critique.

Monday: Princess’s first day of grade one—settle Princess in, sort out dilemma of desire to wear pretty hairband with bow on top and requirement to don sun protective hat, find her a desk which was close to good friend but not quite close enough, meet teacher (who’s looking rather frazzled, perhaps questioning her career choice, having already forgotten about the wonderful summer holidays that are now behind her). Go to work. Late.

Tuesday: Working mum facade firmly in place. Drop kids off at daycare, meet new carers, rush to work (but not too fast: recent speeding fine has me driving like that guy who drove Miss Daisy). Arrive late to work. Again. Skip lunch break so I can leave early to do required shopping for Australia Day BBQ.

Wednesday: Bright sunny day—yay! House cleaning, food prep etc. BBQ goes off without a hitch, thank goodness. Crash into bed, exhausted.

Thursday: Pest control guys come to deal with the termites in our yard and put in a barrier to ensure the little nasties don’t decide to move into the house. Drilling sounds on and off all day, chemical spraying etc. Paid a wad of cash and said goodbye to another day with no words down.

Friday: Overnight Princess has had a temperature. Played nurse all day, and tried to keep the Cherub from jumping on Princess’s sore stomach.

Saturday: I have no groceries, and have to buy a birthday present for 3 year old’s party on Sunday. So dash off to the shops. Take Cherub to alleviate her cabin fever and satisfy her need for one on one attention. Wish I could take valium to soften the impact of her shopping centre rampages. Doughnuts will have to do (for both of us)

Sunday: Here I am, blogging much later than my scheduled time, having spent the week running without getting anywhere, trying to find a doctor open on a Sunday because Princess’s fever is still hanging around and now I’m starting to worry (I should say worry more). I’m also wondering where my lovely week of writing has gone.

Total words must be somewhere around 1,500. I’m not sure, I don’t have time to work it out.

Maybe I’ll finish the ms next week, but I’m not holding my breath.

Sami (who’s decided when/if this book comes out it will be promoted as the ‘long awaited’ new release from barely hanging by a thread author :))

The Fur Debate


We’ve had some serious stuff happening down here in Oz recently, what with floods drenching half the country and bushfires raging on the west coast. It gets one thinking about the important things, so today I want to address one of those things that’s been on my mind…

Is the hairy chest back in?

I'm glad they're updating the hairdo

One thing I’ve been looking forward to this week is the premiere of the new updated version of Hawaii Five O. I’ve loved shows and movies set in Hawaii ever since the original series played on the small screen. That opening shot with Jack Lord whipping his head around, perfectly coiffed hair immobile, to stare down the barrel of that camera like he was going to wipe all criminal scum from the face of the earth. I LOVED it.

Then there was one of my secret crushes… actually I never made much of a secret about it. Oh Tom, why did you never reply to my letter? Sob sob. When Tom Selleck roared onto my TV screen in his sleek red Ferrari, in those teeny tiny shorts and the ridiculous floral shirt, I so wanted to BE Magnum PI. Or I would have settled for just once running my fingers through that manly pelt of chest hair. Come on, you know you wanted to as well.

I don’t care what anyone else says, he was YUMMY.

Now they’ve remade the original Hawaii Five O series, and I have say proudly that Australia’s own Alex O’Loughlin is going to reprise the role of Steve McGarrett. Honestly not every Aussie Guy looks like this one, but in a perfect world they would.

Another hairy chested Hawaii-based hunk to drool over. Book me Danno, then Steve can frisk me. He’s not a furry as Tom but there’s definite fuzz. And to think when they designed my cover for Sunset Knight they said it was too difficult to find hairy chested models for the covers, although I wrote Brody with a hairy chest. Will the tide turn now? I hope so.

Don’t get me wrong, I love a smooth chest as much as the next girl, but variety is the spice of life. Let’s give the furry pecs a go, shall we? Surely Alex can turn even the most dedicated smooth-chested fan.

What do you think?


Chicks You’d Turn For


I’m going to deviate a little from the Diva norm here today. We do love to talk about men here at the blog, and post pics, and write about them and…. Well, you know. Today I’m going to do the post my hubby has been secretly hoping I’ll do. He’s always trying to tell me I should write a ffm menage, or a ff love story. I think he has an ulterior motive.

I’m not planning anything like that at this point, and I am completely straight, for the record. But heck, chicks do rock. If I were ever in some kind of nuclear accident which rendered me suddenly gay (hey if there can be a spiderman, surely there can be a temporary lesbian superhero too), there are some women I think I’d be into. Here’s my top five:

Kate Winslet: I don’t know if it’s how she wears a purple hat in Titanic or the fact she can swear a blue streak and make it sound posh in that upper crust Brittish accent, or the fact she once sued a magazine for airburshing out her natural curves, but there’s something about Kate that I admire the hell out of.

Christina Hendricks: I discovered her while I was looking for pictures of pretty redheads to inspire my latest heroine. There’s something mesmerising about her eyes and the rest of her is pretty amazing too. Who’s her photographer? I want one picture of me where I look like that (And Kate, I might need the airbrush).

 Pink: Let’s face it, Pink rocks in every way. She’s talented, athletic (wish you could get abs like that without all the pesky crunches), rebellious and funny. She does things her way and has been phenomenally successful without compromising her own sense of style. As a bonus I love her music, and not many people can carry off a super short peroxide blonde cut like that (I know, I tried it years ago. On me? Ick).

Lauren Graham: I’ve always been a fan of the TV show The Gilmore Girls, in large part because of its lead actress. She’s gorgeous, funny, smart mouthed and energetic. Basically she just seems like the kind of person you could be best buds with the second you met her. It doesn’t hurt that any time she comes on the TV the Princess and Cherub exclaim excitedly about the woman who looks just like Mummy. Yep, juuuuussst like her. Gotta love that ego boost (as mistaken as their little eyes might be…)

Drew Barrymore: Child star turned wild child, Drew pulled herself out of an early drug problem and rebuilt herself using her looks and her brains. She’s smart, savvy, a great actress and a clever businesswoman. She comes across as warm and friendly and she’s got that whole cute/sexy combination down like no one else. Who doesn’t love Drew?

So there you go. If every man in the world suddenly looked like this to me:

those are the women I’d consider going the other way for. I’m sure they’d feel the same way about me, right?  


Happy 5th Birthday (Suit)


Samhain is celebrating it’s FIFTH birthday this weekend. If you’re a member of the Samhain Café, you’ll want to pop in sometime over the weekend to say hello to your favorite authors and other like minded readers. There’s also a chance to win a KINDLE, so it’s well worth the tour.

I received my first publishing contract with Samhain in 2006, when the company had only been open a year. Not many people had heard of then but that’s all changed! They’ve been an awesome publishing house. So to help them celebrate this fabulous milestone, I decided to look up some fun facts about birthdays. I was going to do five, but, well, I got distracted by the first one and everything derailed from there.

1. Apparently there are many benefits for men if they sleep in their birthday suit, such a deeper sleep cycles, improved fertility and increased sexual desire/contact between couples in relationships. What do you think?

Those guys haven’t quite got it. The research says BIRTHDAY suits guys. You’re wearing just a little too much.

Ah, that’s better.

What was the topic again? Oh yeah, Happy Birthday (suit) to Samhain Publishing!


Because Nature Has Such a Wicked Sense of Humor


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I get some crazy stuff sent to me on the email and occasionally I like to share. Hope you’re all having a wicked weekend!


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