Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Oh What a Ride

We went to New Orleans today to the zoo. It should have been less than a two hour drive there and the same back. Instead, it took over three hours to get there because they were signing up people for a lawsuit and we had to go down that road to reach the zoo. It took us a whole hour to get down that one road.

When we left hours later to come home, we hoped that road would be cleared. They had moved people out into the middle of the road and were letting people in cars just pass by and hand over their lawsuit papers to be filed. Wish they had thought of that sooner.

We were so glad to be moving at a good speed, and then we hit another jam, this one seemed to be every where. We heard there was a crane over, and that another way there was a bad wreck. We ended up stuck in traffic again. In the end a ride that should have taken us a little over three hours there and back, took over six. Now I know why I love living in a small town. Okay, so we don't have a zoo, but all peaches have pits. (Smile)

The picture is of the Causeway Bridge we have to cross over to get to New Orleans. Ain't she a long one? We had already been on the bridge for a while when I snapped this picture. The Lake Pontchartrain Causeway Bridge was listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the longest bridge in the world at 23 miles long. I think there's a longer one now, maybe a couple, but I think not in the US.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Goodbye Reba – Reba McEntire’s Sitcom Cancelled

They say laughter is good for the soul--and for the body and mind. There are so few new shows on now days that give me that good laughter. One of my very favorites is the sitcom that stars well-known country singer Reba McEntire. The show is rightly titled Reba and centers around the main character Reba Hart who is a divorced mom of three. Her ex-husband Brock lives next door with his new wife Barbra Jean. Reba’s oldest daughter Cheyenne is married to Van and they have a baby. The young couple and child live with Reba along with a younger sister and brother.

Together all of these people are a modern day family and some how go through all of the ups and downs of life while making us laugh almost non-stop. I think a lot of that laughter comes from the characters of Barbra Jean and Van. They are both so dingy and funny and such endearing characters. Reba is just a down to earth show that the whole family can watch together and enjoy.

Sadly, even though Reba is one of the top rated sitcoms on the CW network it airs on, CW has decided to cancel the show without a warning to the show's many, many fans. There was still a contract in play, but no ends for the characters will be tied up, so some other shows could have at least be done to show fans how the characters will move on. The CW isn't going to do that though, they are just going to play the last three shows they have already recorded, and that’s that.

The actors wanted to stay around, but the CW spokesman said the show wasn’t aimed at the kind of audience they wanted to reach. Makes me wonder what kind of audience they do want? I would think any audience that moves a show high up in the all important ratings game on your network would be the kind of audience you would want to keep around and maybe even aim some new shows toward. Looks like not. Maybe that's why I've heard so many disappointed Reba fans say that when the last of Reba airs, that's the last they'll watch of the CW. I guess they feel there is no need to stay where they aren't wanted.

The final two episodes of Reba will air on the CW back to back on Sunday, February 18th starting at 7/6c. This show had so much more left to give. I would have at least have liked to seen them take the time to wrap up things, maybe have Reba find a new love and Cheyenne give birth to the new baby we just found out about. I wish another network would step in and take the show, saving it, but we all know that things like that don't usually happen. long Reba. It sure was fun while it lasted.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

All That Sex!

There was a time when few novels, even romance novels, had much sex in them. There were many embraces and lots of panting and kissing and even some petting, but in a large percent of the books, when it went beyond that, the bedroom door closed and the scene broke off right there to leave the rest of the encounter to our own vivid imaginations.

By the time the new millennium rolled around, those bedroom doors were often being left wide open--if the impassioned couple even waited long enough to find a bedroom. Some authors began to feel pressured to write out those encounters in more and more detail when it became clear that a lot of the women who were buying romance novels were no longer satisfied with a closed-door policy.

I began to get messages from new authors who were working themselves into a tizzy of it all. “I can’t write sex scenes no matter how hard I try.” “What if my mother or one of the ladies from the church got the chance to read what I wrote?” “When I write sex scenes they read flat, with no sizzle at all. Kind of like directions on how to install a dishwasher.” “I write those hot scenes, but it’s like pulling teeth because I’m so uncomfortable about it.” ect…. All of them ended with a cry for help, a “What should I do?” or a “How do you write them?” or something along those lines.

The truth is, anytime you try to write something that you don’t want to write, that you don’t like, that you are uncomfortable with, it’s not going to work out as well as it should. It’s never going to be your strongest writing, the writing that will show off your real talent for story telling at its best. Just because there is a trend for publishers to buy paranormal romances or erotic romance or humorous romance, doesn’t mean you should try to pen one. You will do your best writing when you spend your time writing what you enjoy, or at least writing within your own comfort zone.

If you are comfortable writing it but fear what others will think of you, well, that can hold you back just as tightly. Maybe it would help to write under a pen name so you can put that worry away and write freely. Sadly, many people will read a book where six women are kidnapped, tortured and then hacked to pieces, with it all described in great gory detail, and not find any offence in it, but those same people will almost hyperventilate over an adult couple making love with it being described with any real details at all.

When you figure out what you are comfortable writing, then you’ll know just how much sex should be in your stories. Don’t forget there are romance publishers out there that still buy books with no sex in them at all and others with mild sex, or limited sex. Even in a pretty hot romance, sex is a very small part of the story. The romance is the sexual tension between two people who are falling in love, the tingle when his hand brushes hers, the way her heart races when he stares into her eyes, the way the scent of her perfume distracts him beyond reason, or the way his palms itch because he wants to touch her so badly. A story can vibrate with sexual tension without one sex scene.