Is no news really good news???

November 12, 2010 at 9:45 pm (General News..., Grumble, Interactions with Agents, Introduction to the Imagination of Amanda M. Holt, Literary blunders..., Possible directions..., Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

So……………….
………………….waiting to hear back on two (bigger) items in my life.

A) whether or not I passed the Canadian Registered Nursing Exam aka the CRNE, which I wrote on October 6 of this year….results were mailed out Monday, so I will likely find out Monday 🙂

B) whether or not Sandy Lu, Literary Agent at the L. Perkins Lit Agency in NY, NY, is going to represent a certain project I have written.

I am patient, and resolve that time will tell, and that quite possibly both items will be relayed to me with positive outcomes.

Still the wait for both items is a little nerve wracking.

Both of them have great ability to influence the rest of my nursing career and my writing career.

Additionally, the anxiety about whether or not I have passed the CRNE has given me the occasional bout of indigestion and (admittedly) a few sleepless nights. What if I have to write it again? What will my boss think of me if I have failed my first attempt? How little of the CRNE did I actually know or not know? I’ve always done well on written exams….but this one, it’s a toughy. I really am really on the fence about how well I did.

Some days, I feel utterly confident and relatively carefree.

Other days, I feel as though there is an element of impending doom on the horizon, waiting to prove that I am a fool among the brilliant people I work with!

Oh woe is me, woe is me —- no news is NOT good news.

I am, for the most part, a patient sort of creature.

I do not throw tantrums when I can’t find the remote (probably because I habitually keep it in the same place), and I like to engage in little word games and create-a-story exercises when I am i.e. waiting in line in grocery stores.

Yet waiting for the outcome of this exam? ABSOLUTELY HORRIBLE!!!

I kid you not!!!!

And as for waiting to hear back from Ms. Lu….I’m not too terribly perturbed about that, because while she is reading one of my projects, I have many on the go that I feel have great merit, and many that I have jotted notes for — and not even steeped myself in the process of writing these gems yet — because the timing has not been right to write.

No I have not lost my mind, I’ve found that there’s a bit of timing, focus, wavelength, mindframe/frame-of-mind and setting/surrounding/ambiance that is necessary to write certain tales………they will begin to inspire me more, and begin to actually even “write themselves” when the time is right.

And besides, Ms. Lu is a busy woman in a career where busy people like her may juggle hundreds of projects at a time. If my project hasn’t shone through the slush pile as something worthy of her greatest efforts, then i predict that I will be receiving a polite rejection letter in due time…..

If she likes it, but thinks it needs revising and resubmission, then that is what a semi-rejection-rejection letter will say.

Then there is the ULTIMATE prize for a writer seeking representation by an agent: the letter outlining the next steps to enter into contractual obligation for representation by the agent, or the SUPREME ULTIMATE prize — an actual contract for publication.

There are variations, of course. After careful consideration, she could always suggest that she doesn’t handle these kinds of projects, and refer me to a different agent.

Ah, so many different ways that i could receive news about the project.

Interestingly enough, that anxiety is FAR more pleasant than the whole CRNE self-torment.

*sigh*

Does anyone out there understand?

Then again, i really should count my blessings. Some people are waiting for news with life-or-death outcomes, i.e. the results of an HIV test, or to see how far the cancer has spread through their lymphatic system. Then there are paternity tests (who’s the baby daddy), and all kinds of other life-changing situations.

Perhaps I should not be such a cry baby.

Oh, but wait.

This is the Blog that is supposed to be addressing some of the gains and losses, trials and tribulations, frustrations and successes of the amateur author(ess).

There you have it folks.

A little bit on the literary agent waiting game.

Looking forward to hearing from her, whatever the outcome.

Happy reading!

Sincere regards,

Amanda M. Holt
Amateur Authoress, Possible RN-eligible GN, and Sometimes Crybaby

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Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! Also, BOUND to be released soon by NCP!!!

November 8, 2010 at 4:35 am (Book Sales (Humble Honesty Here), General News..., Introduction to the Imagination of Amanda M. Holt, New Concepts Publishing Releases, Possible directions..., Queried novels/novellas *news*) (, , , , , , , , , , , , )

BOUND Due out Dec 10/10 Artwork by Alex DeShanks

So…………
……………BOUND: A Post-Apocalyptic Lust Story is being released by New Concepts Publishing (www.newconceptspublishing.com) as BOUND on or around December 10, 2010!!!!!

This is the novella featuring the warrioress Ana in her jungle home, and the fertility researcher from the so-called civilized world who………..well now, I’ll leave it to him to kiss and tell.

If you like, there’s an excerpt to BOUND on my website http://www.amandamholt.com posted right below my blazing pink shout-out to the Brandon Lady Barbs!

Happy reading!

Sincere regards,

Amanda M. Holt
Amateur Authoress and Sometimes Blogger
Visit http://www.newconceptspublishing.com/Amanda-Holt.html for all my NCP titles!

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4th Round of Edits on “My Experimental Years”… *also* ANTONY KEITH

November 8, 2010 at 4:10 am (eXtasy Books Releases, General News..., Grumble, Introduction to the Imagination of Amanda M. Holt, Literary blunders..., Possible directions...) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

My Experimental Years, Artwork by Martine Jardin Due Out Nov 15/10

So……………..
………………..today I submitted my 4th round of edits on an 85,700 word adult novel titled “My Experimental Years” to eXtasy Books (www.extasybooks.com), the first publisher to contract and publish my eBooks.

Hopefully, it will be the last round of edits *fingers crossed* as I would like to invest my energies in my horror and paranormal projects that are on the go.

Mind you, I am attempting to balance creative time with studying material for my dayjob *I’m a Nurse, a GN anyway — the results on our RN exam are due in the mail this week!!!* and to be honest with you, i haven’t been spending enough time on either one lately!!! My, how personal interests can distract one!

Being single and looking to mingle has pros and cons, it seems………….my head has been in the clouds the last few days. Meeting some people, communicating with others…

Also, I have been working on reading & commenting on my friend Antony Keith’s first novel/screenplay titled The Rogue Family Chronicles. As I am not accustomed to reading something set up in a script-type format, I find it a little awkward to offer advice. It would be like someone who’s only ever used a PC giving advice to someone proficient in Mac. His story is rich with dialogue, tension, plot and has some delightful surprises along the way! I was expecting something very elementary and simple for a first work, but Antony has written a lot of heart and soul into it, spoken at length in an opinionated voice through his characters, and I am looking forward to reading the rest.

I just wish that I was better equipped to guide him through the scriptwriting/screenwriting/playwriting process. I’m a novel/novella writer with her eye on paperbacks/hardcovers/eBooks and maybe a graphic novel or two if I met the write artist *are you out there???*

Long story short: KEEP YOUR EYES OUT FOR ANTONY KEITH IN THE NEAR FUTURE! HE’S WORKING ON SOMETHING SPECIAL! He also practices very creepy coin magic (and other tricks) but that’s a WHOLE other story….

Sincere regards,

Amanda M. Holt
Amateur Authoress and Sometimes Editor/Source of Constructive Criticism

p.s. – One suggestion to anyone out there who writes dialogue into their stories. DO NOT MAKE THE ERRORS THAT I HAVE MADE USING DIALOGUE TAGS, because trying to fix them later in an 86,000 word manuscript is a pain in the f*cking ass. I kid you not, those kinds of corrections are absolutely tedious, so my advice? Do them properly in the first draft.

Examples:

“I’ll do it later.” He said. SHOULD BE: “I’ll do it later,” he said.

“Come to me.” Carl whispered. SHOULD BE: “Come to me,” Carl whispered.

“Go to Hell!” She cried. SHOULD BE: “Go to Hell!” she cried.

“In my own defense.” He began, and then stopped. SHOULD BE: “In my own defense”, he began and then stopped.

AND, whenever possible, DON’T EVEN USE DIALOGUE TAGS!!!! When going through the editing process, my editors find (and I shamefully admit) that I overuse them.

Also, em-dashes are the DEVIL, and consecutive periods such as … are ALSO the DEVIL, as are ellipses.

The comma should be used, not abused.

What I mean by this, is that if you find that you are, oh I don’t know, using a comma a little more than you should, perhaps you may want to consider breaking the long sentence into smaller sentences, like statements, or whatever.

Happy reading (and writing) and my sincere apologies for editing blunders overlooked in previously published works. I know they are there like ink blots on a transcript — an eyesore.

A.M.H

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Happy August!!!!!!!

August 2, 2010 at 10:07 pm (General News..., Grumble, Introduction to the Imagination of Amanda M. Holt, Literary blunders..., Possible directions..., Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , )

So…………………
……………………Happy August!!!!

Day One of my new lifestyle and dieting habits began yesterday….I am currently boiling baby carrots. As with all dieting fads/phases I have gone through, while I am EVER optimistic, I sense that this one too shall pass.

I will not be thwarted!!!! I want ever SOOOO badly to once again fit into my plaid pants from Le Chateau! It would be a God-awful shame if I never got to wear those pants again! I also have a FABULOUS floor length plaid wool skirt….assorted other goodies I discovered while unpacking and repacking my world for the move from Ste. Rose du Lac, MB to my current residence, and from my current residence to my upcoming residence in Northern Manitoba.

Adventure, adventure, I embrace you with enthusiasm, though I know not your name or the entirety of your nature!!!!

So yes, did the Fam-Dam-ily weekend thing, it went incredibly well — saw a lot of old familiar faces, met some new people (distant relatives) and was eventually tormented by polka music…..Don’t get me wrong, it looks like a lot of fun, but the shrieking of the fiddles are like a sawmill to my brains!!!! I have a great deal of difficulty enduring fiddles……they are a migraine waiting to happen.

Had some amazing beat-rolls (beat nicks?) at the Ukrainian themed supper at my grandparents’ 65th Wedding Anniversary, and the tenderest most sinfully perfect perogies you have ever had the opportunity to delight in! My Aunt Sherry’s sweet and sour meatballs were, as usual, perfect (my brother is going to be envious for a while, as they are his favorite and he was not able to attend the festivities), and my Aunt Donna’s pickles were perhaps the best batch she has ever made!!!!

Yesterday we had (phoentically doing this, as I know NOT the Ukrainian spelling) soo-kah-hree where we ate the leftovers, and ended the day with a fabulous boat ride. The younger and more courageous daredevils of our family wakeboarded and tubed behind a boat on Lake Winnipegosis. Exploration of the island we docked at was a must, and I must admit, I was moved by the beauty of the location —- perhaps it will inspire one of my stories in the near future. I am itching to write about a serial killer who moors his victims or something like that…..we shall see….

As for my writing, I have done little to none of it for the past week. Tonight’s writing will take the form of a letter in Deutsch to my dear friend Hauke, and perhaps I will finally make some progress on the Dark Field series that I have created???????

Once again, Happy August!!!!

Sincere regards,

Amanda M. Holt

p.s. my 31st birthday is on Friday the 13th of this month, and is also the day that I am SUPPOSED to be moving to my new residence. HOW COOL IS THAT?????

p.p.s. – haven’t heard back from NCP yet on whether or not they want to publish BOUND: A Post-Apocalyptic Lust Story, my tale of the jungle warrioress Ana, an excerpt of which you can find at http://www.amandamholt.com !!!!!!

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Point A to Point B may not be a straight line…

June 16, 2010 at 4:25 am (General News..., Grumble, Introduction to the Imagination of Amanda M. Holt, Possible directions..., Uncategorized) (, , , , , )

So…………………………………………………
……………………………………………………opportunities are presenting themselvs from a number of locations, but here’s the dilemma:

A. Love my new apartment, but there are limited employment opportunities in this area for GNs/BNs/RNs.
B. The Community Health Nurse Development Program in the NWT has cancelled/postponed applications, due to lack of funding.
C. Feeling a certain degree of restlessness. Wondering if I should push my envelope a little more, exercise my options, take some (small and reasonable) risks.
D. Coming to the conclusion that I would have to be INSANE to think that I could handle the role of charge nurse in an ER environment immediately after graduation.
E. There might (MIGHT) be a possibility (read: possibility) of working as a public health nurse or community health nurse in STI prevention, which is EXACTLY where I want to be in my career path (the only question is, how much experience should one accumulate prior to chasing down one’s dreams with all the fervor of a rabid rabbit???).

Okay, that is multiple dilemmas, and there are more…

…Haven’t done any writing in the last few days, and that is n my conscience. Haven’t done any lengthy studying either, but that is because I don’t want to re-injure my neck so soon after making a full recovery. Studying with my laptop is an option….there’s always WebMD…and Canadian Nursing websites…

Had an EXCELLENT telephone chat with both my biological mother and surrogate mother/mother by proxy….these helped me put things in perspective….

Still, it feels as though the sands beneath my feet are shifting, and I must reposition myself to keep equilibrium, a good sound foot hold on the vast dune whose name is Challenge.

Okay….enough self-absorption for one evening.

Time to shower. It was plus 27 today at one point, and the new place was sweltering!

Sincere regards,

Amanda M. Holt

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Half-way point of Nursing Practicum………….midterm evaluation this week!!!

June 8, 2010 at 2:32 am (General News..., Grumble, Introduction to the Imagination of Amanda M. Holt, Literary blunders..., Possible directions..., Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , )

So…………………………………………………………………………
……………………………………………………………………………mid-term evaluation for my Nursing Practicum this week, and I admit, i am a little nervous. I know that I shouldn’t be: both of my preceptors are great, very supportive, and I have been asking for feedback regularly (READ: every single day like the neurotic insecure little nursing student I am). Yes, I need more confidence (according to my “coworkers” it will come in time). Yes, I need to pcik up my pace (admittedly, I feel I have improved in this area — second guessing myself less, and learning the routing helped alot). And I do need to practice my skills whenever the opportunities present themselves. I think I am doing well with the psychosocial aspects of client care, the nurturing, goal-setting, et cetera, et cetera……………..

Now if only I could memorize every step to every procedure and every aspect of every medication and every preference of every client 🙂 Why can’t our brains work like instantly-accessible storage units where you just have to think of the word “SEARCH”, psychically key in the subject you are looking up, and find what it is in the recesses of your mind you are looking for????

LOL Okay, okay – enough silly self-involvement for one evening.

Time to do something constructive with the rest of my night off, like edit my sensual contemporary romance “Her Man” (I know, the title sucks with a capital SUCK) of 57, 000 words or OR or review laboratory tests and normal test range values and do some more mid term assignment work……..I DID designate tomorrow as “Finish Homework Day” though, not to be confused with “Finnish Homework Day” the day people from Finland celebrate the liberation of working from home (less of a commute that way, I hear).

Okay, I’m pulling your leg – there’s no such thing as Finnish Homework Day. Or is there? I mean the Internet is THAT bizarre these days………………………….and there’s a celebration for EVERYTHING.

(This coming from a Manitoban, where we have these things called SOCIALs…..in May we had a Manitoba Homecoming social [big party, dance, drink fest] where we celebrated the World’s Largest Social [a Manitoba-wide social]. I don’t know if we actually set or broke any records, but long story short, people from Manitoba are so sociable we delight in having sociables [Socials: wedding socials, anniversary socials, Halloween socials, fundraising socials, New Years socials, etc etc] just to prove how sociable we can be).

Ok, I did say I would stop.

Stopping now.

Sincere regards,

Amanda M. Holt

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A day off from nursing practicum….

May 13, 2010 at 8:17 pm (eXtasy Books Releases, General News..., Grumble, Introduction to the Imagination of Amanda M. Holt, Literary blunders..., Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , , , , )

So………………….
…………………….I had a few days off of my nursing student practicum, and I spent it grocery shopping, visiting, studying (there seems to be no end to studying) apartment hunting, and bill paying.

Now, I am blogging, and then will be baking – a Gateau a la Orange!!!! (Yes, I am trying to learn French – Gateau a la Orange means orange cake).

I regret to inform you that I have not been writing much of late – in fact, I have neglected my laptop so long, I don’t even recall which project I was working on last! An unfortunate thing, oui oui. Last night I spent a sliver of time editing a tale for eXtasy Books – an adult romance featuring a hot-headed strong willed young woman trying to find her true calling, as well as the best sex that rural Manitoba has to offer! This spirited young woman doesn’t hold back, nor shy away from a challenge, and comes to find both men and women as suitable lovers. Believe it or not, despite the “tame” rural setting, she has many a wonderful adventure, finds love, loses love, and…well, whether or not she gets love back is for the reader to know!!!!

Expect the tale out around October 1st or 15th, as there are a number of Halloween themed chapters that my editor has agreed makes this an ideal Halloween read.

I will post excerpts as I make the last of the editing/alterations.

I hope that you find something delightful to read this summer!!!

Sincere regards,

Amanda M. Holt

P.S. If you like modern-day vampire erotica, you might like to try my short eBooks “In His Thrall” and “Of Crimson Blood and Ivory Skin” from New Concepts Publishing (www.newconceptspublishing.com). If you like vengeful vigilantes of the Nephalim (angel human hybrid) variety, try my Reaper Series at eXtasy Books (www.extasybooks.com). If you like stories about headstrong heiresses and the bodyguards assigned to them, try my tale “Guarding Miranda”, a full length romance novel from NCP.

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Who doesn’t love fan emails?

April 20, 2010 at 6:35 pm (Fan mail reflections..., General News..., Grumble, Introduction to the Imagination of Amanda M. Holt, Literary blunders..., Possible directions...) (, , , , , , , )

So…………..
………………I recieved a pleasant email today from a nurse who read one of my stories. Since I am myself entering the field of nursing in the near future, I must admit, I was thrilled! It really helped to shift things into a new perspective for me — and also reminded me that one must write what they know, especially when one is representing a profession with the written word. I will have to be certain to be as realistic as possible and conduct accurate research in the future when writing stories involving nurses, their clients, and their love interests.

So far I have written only one novella featuring a nurse, it’s a pure fantasy piece (An Unusual Encounter of the Rock Star Kind, published by New Concepts Publishing in March 2010 http://www.newconceptspublishing.com) written to vent some of my admiration of a rock icon that I find unusually attractive. This nurse who emailed tells me that she too has written a story about a tattooed rock star meeting up with a nurse (as yet unpublished), and I did the only sensible thing that there was to do: ENCOURAGE HER TO GET IT PUBLISHED!

So back to the theme of this post, “Who doesn’t love fan emails?” For that matter, who doesn’t love reviews? Whether they are full of criticism (of either the constructive or vindictive sort) or full of praise, written with questions about characters’ motives or pointing out flaws in your plot, the eye of the reader is a sharp one, and should be appreciated for what it is: a point of view on your tale.

So of COURSE I love fan email! Even the fan email that is not so fannish, the stuff that says: “Your heroine is an idiot, she should never have done X, Y, and Z, especially after meeting Mr. Wrong” still shares valuable insight on where you may have to consider alternative options or angles when writing your next story (or revising an old one).

For that reason, I wish that I was part of a writer’s sharing circle, or writer’s group.

When I get settled, once I am finished my Senior Practicum for my Bachelor of Nursing and have a little more time on my hands, I am going to have to do just that: seek out a writer’s group, either online or local, to find a forum to discuss my own and others’ works.

The most authentic way for an author to improve their writing is through the eyes and experiences of those who have immersed themselves brain deep in the writer’s written word.

I appreciate – and love – my readers.

And to that end, I look forward to every item of fan mail they send me.

Sincere regards,

Amanda M. Holt

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Ending one chapter…or is it a book? A volume in a series?

April 7, 2010 at 12:34 am (General News..., Grumble, Introduction to the Imagination of Amanda M. Holt, Possible directions...) (, , , , , , , , , , )

So………………………………..
…………………………………..I wrap up the theory courses in my Bachelor of Nursing studies this week.

I am experiencing mixed feelings of elation and terror; accomplishment and subtle regret; anticipation and impending doom; progress and stasis — all at once.

The thought of transforming my life, reinventing myself again, starting fresh – starting something new – appeals as it has always appealed (what’s underneath THAT rock? Oh look, little wriggly things).

Only now, the REAL test of character and wit and tenacity begins.

From student nurse to graduate nurse soon to actual nurse: the process as fascinating for me as a catepillar entering chrysalis to become the butterfly.

Here I am, ending one chapter of my life, taking off my layers of student self, stepping into a nurse’s shoes, shoes that I can only hope to grow into and fit properly in the near future.

Here I am, ending one book, perhaps aptly titled “M’s Adventure’s: The College Years” or “The Formal Education of M”…certainly not the first in the series, certainly won’t be the last. Or will it? Fate laughs at the best laid plans.

And all the while, a Community Health Nurse program in the Northwest Territories beckons….but leaving Manitoba’s subzero temperatures for NWT’s Hell-Frozen-Over-And-Literally-Frozen-Over-Like-In-That-Disturbing-Painting-By-Was-It-Dante-Or-That-Other-Guy-? is like jumping out of the frying pan into the fire, for those of us humans who do NOT like cold weather or ice or snow-machines (a major form of transportation up there).

Yet I should not grumble – not at all!

Now is a time for celebration! A time of seasons changing and accomplishment and really, is there anything at all wrong with finishing a good book? A book that had twists and turns and intriguing characters, and even the occasional “what if-?” cliffhanger?

“Not at all,” said M with a sigh, her lips curling into a wry grin. “Oh silly, silly girl. You’re talking to yourself again, and in front of God Knows Who this time.”

This summer, I will be devoting a GREAT deal of time to studying for my RN exam, so I humbly apologize: there will be no new fiction published until possibly October 1st/15th/31st — that is IF (a big IF) I am able to find spare time to edit the manuscript I’ve promised Extasy Books, the full-length erotica titled “My Experimental Years”.

Which is nothing less than what all the experts would encourage: in My Experimental Years i very literally wrote what I knew about – being a headstrong young woman in rural Manitoba who was as untameable as a wildfire and as shifting as mercury.

Priorities being what they are, my nursing career comes first, my writing career/hobby second.

I will try to at least post exerpts of my novels on this blog over the summer to give you a taste of what might evolve into something remarkable one day.

Sincere regards,

Amanda M. Holt

p.s. – that old adage, write what you know? Admitting that you don’t really know anything is the first real step to learning (especially about yourself….that’s what I’ve noticed, anyway).

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New 5-Tale M/F F/F BDSM Erotica Release from eXtasy Books!

March 17, 2010 at 2:19 am (eXtasy Books Releases, General News..., Introduction to the Imagination of Amanda M. Holt, Literary blunders..., Possible directions..., Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Tales From the Owner-Operator of the Boulevard Motor Hotel by Amanda M. Holt

So………..
…………..March 15th, eXtasy Books released my newest eBook, the 5-tale naughty novella titled “Tales From the Owner-Operator of the Boulevard Motor Hotel”.

This little novel (whose spice level builds tale by tale, chapter by chapter) is not for the faint of heart – especially not the final two tales featuring the heroine of the story and her victim (or is it, master?) the Bar Manager Louis!

Blurb:

“Brazen. Bold. Wanton. Hedonistic. Kayla North is all of these things, and more—much more. The sexy young owner of the Boulevard Motor Hotel takes advantage of her position to lure men and women alike. She discovers the pleasures of a customer, a new bartender, and her dependable bar manager in these, the first five Tales in the series.

Kayla’s brand of sex is no ordinary romp into the erotic—an encounter with her proves to be a walk on the wild side! From her bondage and domination of others to her own submission and ultimate humiliation, Kayla’s every desire is sure to be satisfied. And she expects nothing less…”

Whether you enjoy your fetish a little on the lighter side, sweetened with a little fem-fem spanking, or as an all out buffet of humiliation and the ultimate satisfaction, then Tales From the Owner-Operator of the Boulevard Motor Hotel might be the read for you!

As always, enjoy!

Sincere regards,

Amanda M. Holt

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