Sunday, December 31, 2006

JENNY, KRISSIE, & EILEEN: May We Redirect Your Attention To . . .

. . . the 2007 website for The Unfortunate Miss Fortunes?

It's at or you can click on the nice link above, of course, but we never trust links. They break.

We've loved having this blog, but as you may have noticed, we're a little undisciplined. A lot undisciplined. Over at the new place, we'll have Mollie watching us. There will be no sloppiness. Posts will be posted on time. Graphics will stay in place and they'll get dusted, too. The cover will be up as soon as we get it. Plus you'll get to see the site designed before your eyes because Mollie and Mara can't design it until they see the cover, so what you're going to see is a tastefully plain little place over there, then the cover will go up, then some bells and whistles . . .

And every Friday a new post. Plan your weekend around it. Well, maybe not. But really, it'll be so much better than it has been here.

2007. Have a wonderful one. We're planning to, especially every Friday until July when all hell breaks loose. Or The Unfortunate Miss Fortunes break loose.

Happy New Year everybody!

Jenny, Krissie, and Eileen

Thursday, December 07, 2006

JENNY: Coming in 2007

You may have noticed that this blog is, well, erratic. We tend to lurch about, then disappear, then come back for awhile. But now we have A Plan.

Yes, I know we've had those before, but this is a real plan, one we've showed to Mollie who will hold us to it and we're afraid of Mollie, so we'll be following it. On January 1, Well Behaved will be moving into the Miss Fortunes web space and the beginnings of its new look. The website won't be up yet, but Mollie will have seen the cover (we haven't seen it yet, we told you we'd show it to you as soon as we got it, didn't we?) and begun the very basics of the design and the new blog will reflect that. And along with that is a regular posting schedule. No, really, one of us will post every week. And if the one scheduled to post doesn't, the others will come on here and make fun of her. Or something.

So in January we're going to talk about our characters, Eileen about Dee, Krissie about Lizzie, and me about Mare and Xan.

In February, we're going to talk about what took us by surprise while we were writing them because we all were caught flatfooted by some of the things that happened while we wrote.

In March, we'll post the first four POVs from the book, Mare, Lizzie, Dee, and Xan in that order. Yes, I'm sure. Everybody's on board with me this time. It's a go.

In April, we'll talk about the men in the book, some of whom survive to the end.

In May, we'll talk about the magic and the problems that caused us in writing.

In June we'll talk about Salem's Fork and the fun we had writing that, Eileen especially, who called the paper there the New Fork Tines. June will also see the website debut with more excerpts on it each week so that when the book comes out in July, you'll be slavering for it. We are not subtle people. We're exploiting you mercilessly. We want you to know that up front.

And in July when The Unfortunate Miss Fortunes finally hits the bookstores, we'll go back to our usual random posting as we start doing booksignings at RWA National and wandering around cluelessly again.

But really. We have a plan.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

EILEEN: Copy edits: the final chapter

Yes, I did get the manuscript in record time from Krissie(there's a really interesting group dynamic here. Krissie seems completely done with tinkering at copy edit level. Jenny and I seem not to know when to quit. Just a FEW more changes. I swear it's finished now...). The problem, as Jenny said, was that the manuscript was coming in just about the same time as the armageddonlike ice storm that swathed the midwest. I got the manuscript at 6PM from an intrepid Fed Ex driver who was already slipping dangerously close to my car and trees, and at 9:30PM, our power went out. That was Thursday. This is next Tuesday. My power went back on late last night. This is my first day back home after taking my show on the road around my siblings(that after my husband ran away from home to Chile, where they're having summer, of course---okay. So it was a business trip. He's still warm). I spent twelve hours in my bed with chocolate, wine and a romance book. I consider it therapy.

But here's the heroic part. I got the copy edit off Friday afternoon after working on it by Coleman lantern the night before to the symphonic sound of tree limbs snapping and crashing and transformers exploding. Quite atmospheric. Then it took me three hours to find someplace with electricity who could mail the thing off. Office Max is my new hero. The manuscript is in. Now we wait for the cover. In the meantime, we've been talking about posting an update on our characters, now that we've seen how they turned out. Then, maybe a peek at the first POVs. Until then, I'm scanning for generators on Ebay.


Thursday, November 30, 2006

JENNY: Copy Edits and Shorter Pith

For those of you tracking us through the publishing journey, we are now two thirds of the way through the copy edits. That’s when the revised manuscript comes back having been edited by someone trained to find all the grammar and punctuation mistakes along with continuity and factual errors and anything else we screwed up. We still have to go over the manuscript because you never know who you’re going to draw as a copy editor. You can get some real nightmares who think they know how to write better than you do and start changing your words or sometimes they’re just inept and don’t catch your mistakes. And really, it’s up to you to know grammar and punctuation, they’re your tools as much as vocabulary and syntax. Our copy editor was pretty good except for a tendency to miss the forest for the trees. One of my faves was a line Mare has where she’s explaining their family history to Crash and says that they were pretty lucky in the past in that there were only a couple of pond duckings and just one burning at the stake, and then adds that heads are gonna roll for that one “if we ever get time travel.” The copy editor changed that to “time to travel.” That’s the kind of thing you just look at and shudder. Thank God we caught it.

Since there are three of us, the copy edit became a moveable feat. I got it the day before Thanksgiving (sent to me by Needles, the same person who sent me the copy edit at the SMP dinner in Atlanta, I believe) and sent it on to Krissie the following Monday (hey, I had pies to make and then I had to go over the river and through the woods), who turned it around at lightning speed and sent it to Eileen who was supposed to get it today except they’re having ice storms where she is. We’ll see it one more time, in galleys, also called page proofs, sheets of paper that look exactly like the pages of the finished book. I love those. We’re not supposed to rewrite on those, but I do. I’m going to try not to this time because I think the book is in pretty good shape except for Toledo and the shivers, but everybody else is slapping my hands on those so I’m just going to have to let it go.

Then there’s the copy line for the cover. The others were too long and not sexy enough. I don’t do sexy. I’m sorry, I’m just not one of those “He was a hunka hunka burnin’ love” blurb writers. But Jen came back and said marketing needed a shorter blurb so it would fit on the cover and it needed to be hotter to describe the book. So I suggested “THE UNFORTUNATE MISS FORTUNES: Coming their brains out on every page. “ She loved it but she didn’t think marketing would go for it. Those people in marketing; no vision. So then I tried, “The only thing wilder than their magic is their men,” and I think that one stuck. We’ll see. Well, you’ll see. As soon as we get a cover design, we’ll post it here.

So that’s where we are. Moving right along. At a fairly rapid clip for publishing, really. Next time you see one of those shows where a character writes a book and it’s in the bookstores the following month, you can snicker because you know the truth.

It takes longer than that to write the blurb.

Friday, November 10, 2006

JENNY: Pith and Cover Copy

Yep, we're done, THANK GOD, and I love it, too. And then Jen e-mailed us and said,

"I need a wonderful, pithy copyline for the front cover of THE UNFORTUNATE MISS FORTUNES (and we'll have something to show you soon on the cover, so stay tuned). What would be a good copyline, leading into the title and enticing readers?"

And of course Eileen and Krissie were out playing in the wildflowers or something, so there I was, forced to pith. I have no idea what the copyline will be, but here are some of the idea I sent Jen:

Love. Magic. Relatives who want to suck your power out through your ears.
Some days it's just one damn thing after another.

Love* Magic* Bunnies*
Up to their asterisks in trouble.

Dee, Lizzie, and Mare are going through a bad spell . . .
Or three.
Magic happens.

Dee, Lizzie, and Mare aren't very good at magic.

Yeah, you try it. It's not that easy.

And I'm still in there pitching for us to put the first scene up, so maybe I'll be able to talk everybody into it for Christmas. It's a long time until the July release date, but it'd be such a nice Christmas present for all of you who read the blog. And of course, we'll put the cover up here first. I'm very excited to see the cover although with that long title and then three author names plus the pithy copy line, I'm not expecting to see a lot of cover art. We've pretty much filled up the sucker already.

But now it's all the fun stuff. Cover art and ads and publication. And reviews and I think I'll go lie down again. Argh.

Coming to a bookstore near you in July of 2007.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

EILEEN: We're really done

Now it's my turn. Krissie sent the manuscript to me, then I put in the stuff I needed to and forwarded it to Jenny. And, again--and Krissie's right;it better be the last time--I'm finished. All three of us are also going over for continuity things(Krissie had to change Venice to Toledo, Spain among other things),and I, dubbed Minister of BackStory, had to put it in in dribs and drabs, so I, too had to read the whole thing, and yeah, this could just be all hype, but I have to tell you, it isn't. This is such a fun, full, unique, kickass book, that I can't wait to share it with you guys. I can't tell you what a rush it is to work with two other authors who have such singular and different voices than I do. For anybody who sings, it's going from solo work to a trio who has perfect harmony. Maybe you won't notice when you read. But trust me, it adds to the flavor. And each of the sisters is absolutely singular, not to mention their true loves(yum) and Xan. Ah, Xan. I think we've given up casting her. There just isn't anybody out there like her.

And if we haven't told you before, barring flood and famine, St. Martin's has told us that The Unfortunate Miss Fortunes will be out July, 2007. Perfect beach reading! So now, as soon as Jenny gets back off the road, it'll be her turn, and with all the planets in alignment, or whatever, we can give it to Jen Enderlin and let her bring it into the world. Now, I'm off to torture some very horny fairies. Who knew?

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

KRISSIE: We're Done

You heard that before, right? One last go round last night and this morning, and we're finished. The way we work, Jenny keeps the master version because she's a) smarter b) more energetic or c) she's a glutton for punishment. Every time she sends me a new final version of the mss. I have to save it with a new name. I've got UMF Final. I've got UMF Final Atlanta. UMF final August. Absolutely Final UMF. Last Pass. Last Pass After Eileen. Final Version Xan Changes.
Trust me, there's more.
Jenny did her revisions and sent me the mss. I typed in mine, did a Save As and passed it on to Eileen.
It's now officially called I'm Sick of Revisions Halloween. I think it's a catchy title. The only problem is, what will I call it when it gets sent back to me? The Beast That Will Not Die?

It's worth it. Trust me. I looked at my scenes and swooned because Lord knows I'm not plagued with false modesty. I read Jenny's and Eileen's and swooned again, because the immodest one knows how to choose her collaborators.

We rule!