Saturday, April 25, 2020

Real Pants, Real Shoes...

I put on REAL pants today, real shoes, a real bra, and a real shirt!  This, as opposed to my usual daily garb since somewhere around mid-week of March 16th, of sweats, a t-shirt, maybe a sports bra and either socks or slippers.

This 'working from home' situation is a blessing and a curse! I roll out of bed at the same time I would normally if headed 20 minutes or so to my actual workplace, but instead of some quiet time, or cranking Jon Secada or Toby Keith in the car (I know, strange combination), I head down 13 steps to the dining room table, my COVID-19 'stay at home order' makeshift cubicle. Of course, I'm not alone, Max & Wolfie are there, wondering why the hell I'm actually not leaving the house.

While they do keep me company, these two felines can be terribly judgmental.I mean, take a look at Wolf, you know he's thinking, Why don't you get the hell out of here!
That is, of course, when he's not keeping my chair warm, when I go for a leg-stretch and do a lap around the living room!

Max, on the other hand, is very 'hands on' when it comes to my daily television work. As you can see, he has a paw in every aspect of this show. From giving me 'a look' at my choice of words when it comes to scripting a tease, to actually helping me type those words. I didn't have carpal tunnel before, but if this 16 pound cat lays on my wrist any longer...

As you can see by the look on his classic orange tabby face, he's a bit serious when it comes to his managerial duties while I'm working from home.

In the meantime, there is reason to 'celebrate.' Known & Wanted, is waiting on an e-pub shelf near you, ready for purchase. One review says it's 'Awesome!!!' - yes, with three exclamation points (not my emphasis added!) So, grab yourself a copy, it would be greatly appreciated.

And come Monday, April 27th, my writing-partner-in-crime, Deanna Wadsworth's, companion story, Braving the Deep End is released, you can preorder it now if you like. Her story gives you a little more insight into the 'Martin' family of both books.

Here's hoping your favorite authors are keeping your mind off what's happening outside the confines of your home, and from being too overly concerned about the fall-out of this 'historic' event. The 'people in my head' have been keeping me company, forcing a paragraph or two into this laptop daily -- in the meantime, I'm gonna go crank out another 10 miles on my elliptical --  Joel C. Rosenberg is keeping my mind occupied, and soon, it'll be time to reread entire episodic series from Brad Thor, Vince Flynn/Kyle Mills, James Rollins and Mark Dawson.
                                                                  Happy quarantining!

  When not playing with the people in her head, Wendy has a full time job behind the scenes in television.  She lives with her cute chef husband and two fuzzy felines in the Great Lakes region of the Mid-West.  

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

A Feeling You Never Get Accustomed To

    I wonder if my favorite authors, like Brad Thor, James Rollins, Mark Dawson and more get the same feeling? One that never leaves you, and one you never get accustomed to. Maybe it's what  mothers feel when a new baby enters the picture, I don't know. I do know 'Known & Wanted' is my new baby, and the cover sprites at Decadent Publishing again did an amazing job with the cover. And, that feeling - another book being released.
 'K&W' is my seventh book with Decadent. And, I've had some gorgeous covers, but right now, at this moment, this one is my favorite.
You can preorder, 'K&W' now, or wait until Monday, April 20th when it's 'officially' released.
I would be terribly remiss if I didn't plug my writing-partner-in-crime, Deanna Wadsworth's, companion story, 'Braving the Deep End.' Deanna and I have a habit of swiping each other's 'minor' characters and telling their stories as well.

So, thank you in advance for your purchase.

I'm off to bask in the thought of 'hey, I'm really a published author!'

  When not playing with the people in her head, Wendy has a full time job behind the scenes in television.  She lives with her cute chef husband and two fuzzy felines in the Great Lakes region of the Mid-West. 

Saturday, April 11, 2020

A Bright Spot in a Pandemic World

Here's hoping you've been finding some 'bright spots' while this world-wide craziness has been going on!

My 'real job' is at my dining room table for the time being --  producing an hour-long television life-style show with help from my constant companion, Max (aka The Moose.) When he's not stealing my chair, or disapproving of my scripting, he's laying on my arms while I'm tapping away on a keyboard. When he's not nearby (read that 'clingy') he's howling through the house. (He loves the sound of his own voice!)

My other 'real job' is a daily radio newscast for a group of stations - my 'new' recording booth is now a Ford Focus - and yes, that is a SOCK I'm using as a windscreen for my iRig microphone set up.

While all this is happening, and I'm trying to make COVID 19 safety masks out of tea towels, I have a book coming out, Monday, April 20th!  (Finally! YAY for me!) If you're a follower of this blog, you know 'Known & Wanted' has been languishing in my laptop since a local sheriff uttered to me on the phone one very early morning, 'I'm just stepping out of the shower, Wendy...' A newsroom is full of distractions -- but this on by FAR the best distraction I'd ever experienced! You can see just a 'taste' of the cover here.

Of course, as always, I couldn't have completed this project without some affectionate butt-kicking from my writing-partner-in-crime, Deanna Wadsworth. Her book, 'Braving the Deep End' is a companion piece to 'K&W,' a story about Sheriff Eli Martin's son, Michael.

You can preorder both at any of your favorite reputable e-book sellers now, including Decadent Publishing.

And just for fun, if you haven't seen it, this YouTube video spoofing my adopted home state will surely make you laugh!

Enjoy life, stay safe, stay healthy and for right now, stay home and read a book!

  When not playing with the people in her head, Wendy has a full time job behind the scenes in television.  She lives with her cute chef husband and two fuzzy felines in the Great Lakes region of the Mid-West.  

Saturday, January 4, 2020

A Rose By Any Other Name...Not.

     The Old Bard wrote in 'Romeo & Juliet,' '...a rose by any other name would smell as sweet...' Um, no - not so in my 'real' job of writing, producing news, and dealing with some television news anchors.
     Prolific musician, Don Henley, after his full-time gig with the Eagles wrote a song blasting the news business. While I'm not doing that (although I could, my employment puts beans & rice on the dinner table, and there is full reason to be critical for so many reasons!), there is a line in the song about the 'bubble-headed bleach blonde.' For the most part, I've loved those pale-headed anchors I've dealt with, but on the flip side, they've inadvertently given me some really great lines!
     To preface, I've been 'doing news,' either radio, TV or print, since I was 17--waaay back when AM radio still existed as a passable medium. My first job at my hometown station, when 'disc jockeys' or announcers (not 'air personalities') still smoked like fiends in the studio! I cut my teeth on running Milwaukee Brewer baseball feeds and worked my way up to doing news.
     My latest story, Known and Wanted, was born and takes place in my office--a television newsroom. It stemmed from a very short phone conversation very early one morning. The moment the story was conceived - when the 'cute' Sheriff on the other end of the phone said, "I'm just stepping out of the shower, Wendy." Cue brain exploding with (steamy) ideas!
     So. working in a newsroom, around 'pretty' people, yeah, I can see how Don Henley would use that phrase and mean it. Hey, sometimes we all make a faux pas when speaking, but usually it's not in front of how many thousands of people tuned into your broadcast, right?
     Some of these, ahem, gems, you'll find in Known and Wanted, others are still languishing in a document file some six pages long (10 point font, single space) just waiting to be used at another time. 
     So, here goes: 
     Anchor talking about Valentine's Day, "It's so touche' to get engaged on Valentine's Day." (Despite correcting her in her ear, she said the same wrong phrase three times!)
     Anchor discussing mountain climbers, "Isn't the tallest mountain in the world in Himalaysia?"
     A new sandwich shop in town has "...great Chewbacca bread."
     On getting a traffic ticket, "...the cop was hiding in the Courvoisier." (cul-de-sac)
     And, it's not just on the air folks, it's some of those who actually write the stories the anchors read...the producers. Some of the younger ones (well, younger than me--I'm the oldest in the newsroom and could be their grandmothers...please don't go there!), have no 'depth' when it comes to knowledge and words. For instance, in Known and Wanted, main character, Zoe, relays a story to her date about one of her coworkers reading a news release in which a man died during an act of 'auto eroticism.' The producer in the
The 'endangered' wonton
story and the one sitting next to me a my real job asks, "What was he doing with his car?" Only to be outdone by the same producer, after perusing court documents about a man charged with 'wanton endangerment of children' asking "Why are wontons endangered?"

     Um, did I mention, all these folks have some sort of degree in journalism? (Draw your own conclusions!)
     Don't get me wrong, I really like my job, but some days, writing romance full time and retirement can't come soon enough!
     So, dear friends, be looking for Known and Wanted from me and Decadent Publishing in the next month or so. And, a companion piece by my writing partner in crime, Deanna WadsworthBraving the Deep End. 
     Who knows what 'real life' experience will spawn the next book in my head. But, um, that might include running head long (physically) into singer Jon Secada--gotta find a way to make that happen!


  When not playing with the people in her head, Wendy has a full time job behind the scenes in television.  She lives with her cute chef husband and two fuzzy felines in the Great Lakes region of the Mid-West. 

Friday, August 16, 2019


Wow, that took awhile, but that's okay. I'm back in the writing saddle, and for me, that's a good thing. For some time, I thought the 'people in my head' had left me--you know, like I kid who comes home from school one afternoon only to find a house void of people and  furniture!

Thankfully, they hadn't. Like a family spat lasting some two years, hugs and kisses were delivered when 'family' reunited putting pettiness behind them. Now, they're really talking  - to the point, I have to get on my 'writing horse' and ride!

'Known & Wanted,' which has been brewing for two years, is finished--WHOO--and off to the fine folks at Decadent Publishing, along with a companion, yet stand alone, piece from my writing-partner-in-crime, Deanna Wadsworth's, 'Braving the Deep End.' You see, the sheriff in 'Known & Wanted' is the father of the main character in DW's 'Braving the Deep End.' This 'cross' or 'overlapping' thing has been going on for some time and won't end anytime soon. Right now, between the two of us, there are another six or eight stories where my characters show up in her stories, and hers in mine--along with 'cameos' from other 1Night Stand series folks.

So, a pile of thanks to butt-kicker extraordinaire, Deanna! More thanks to the Wood County, Ohio Sheriff's Office, particularly Capt. Rebecca McMonigal, who spend an entire Monday afternoon showing DW and me around, explaining the ins and outs of lock ups and other law enforcement 'inside baseball.'  And big thanks goes to another upper management person in that office for uttering the line that gave me this whole story to begin with! (M.W. - you don't know your influence on us female media types!) A tip of the cap to my coworkers in TV who gave me more fodder than I could use.  

Also, thanks to Bruce Willis, who's an excellent 'sheriff' model. And, last but not least (as of late really not least) Jon Secada, who keeps me company in my earbuds for nearly eight hours in a loud, busy TV newsroom, then another two-or-so at the gym. Spending all that time with 'him' has of course spawned another story--character models?  Jon and a young Grace Kelly.

Now with a rare Friday off, before I start a long, written conversation with the couple above (Jess & Holly), I have to do adult things, like take Wolfie the cat to the vet, go grocery shopping, get vaccinated against Shingles--after which, I'll hit the gym and see what 'Jess' has to say while I'm pedaling away two hours on the bike.

Really, I'm not crazy - just a writer!

When not playing with the people in her head, Wendy has a full time job behind the scenes in television.  She lives with her cute chef husband and two fuzzy felines in the Great Lakes region of the Mid-West. 

Sunday, June 2, 2019

A Week's Worth of Travel, But Only in My Head

But, I have to go back to work!
   My week off from my 'regular' job has come to an end. Do I want to got back to work, yes and no. During this time off, I never left the county in which I live, but I did travel a whole lot with the people in my head.
Hocking Hills State Park - Logan, OH
   I went to Hocking Hills State Park in southern, Ohio, where some interaction of great emotional magnitude takes place between Eli and Zoe - the main characters in my now-finished 1Night Stand "Known & Wanted."
'Spiegel 1 & 2' - Toledo Museum of Art
    I drive past the sculpture below at the Toledo Museum of Art every morning on my way to work. It's called 'Spiegel 1 & 2' - 'mirror' in German. And in the dark, it's all lit up, just two bright figures. They're made of letters, with so much to say, yet, they have no faces, no way of communicating. The way Zoe feels much of the time.
    I visited the imaginary 'Birch County Justice Center,' the real Toledo Hospital (only in my head), The Heights at the Renaissance in downtown Toledo - for an 'in head' quick dinner.
My ass-kicker, Deanna Wadsworth
     Not only did the time off allow me to dig up and plant my garden - which has been fallow for two years due to on going roof work on my home - but it allowed me to spend more time than ever before with this lovely lady. My partner-in-writing crime and ass kicker, Deanna Wadsworth. Now when say 'more time than ever before,' seeing her for more than an hour on three separate occasions over fourteen days-- a major big deal.

   We spent a late Monday afternoon with Captain Rebecca McMonigal of the Wood County, Ohio Justice Center - read that, 'the jail.' There aren't enough words to thank Capt. McMonigal for the time, information, conversation, explanation and 'experience,' Deanna and I both took away from the visit.
    We spent another afternoon plotting more stories, clarifying plots, drinking and post-drinking shopping. Then, a few days later, she colored my hair.
     When I wasn't gardening, house cleaning, errand running and dodging the recent Monsoons, I spent some 90 minutes daily on my elliptical visiting far off lands with my pals Mitch Rapp and Scot Harvath.
     So, what did I get out of this vacation? Hopefully, piles of fresh garden veggies, another published book, ideas for at least four more, and a recharged mind to tackle the work that actually puts beans and rice on the table.
     Is it October yet?

When not playing with the people in her head, Wendy has a full time job behind the scenes in television, a part time job in radio and an even 'parter' time job trying to keep her house clean. She lives with her cute chef husband and two fuzzy felines in the Great Lakes region of the Mid-West. 

Saturday, May 18, 2019

It's Been Nearly a Year, So I Guess I Need to Blog

   Okay, so it hasn't been quite a year, so I guess I'm ahead of the game when it comes to actually posting a blog. 
      Where've I been, what've I been doing--working, banging my head against an empty page, working, fighting with the people in my head, working, yelling at the people in my head, working, and finally ousting one male lead model for another, which smashed the years-long drought and anti-writing mode I've been in.
      I have Bruce Willis to thank for that.
     I know, sounds strange, but once I cut loose Jake Gyllenhaal as the model for 'Sheriff Eli Martin' and replaced him with Bruce Willis - all was again right with the world. And, all it took was one little Google search with Jake showing up in a political t-shirt that didn't quite sit well with me. Which prompted the question, is it wrong to dump your character model based on his/her political leanings. In my case, a resounding 'yes'!
     I also found the 'soundtrack' to my story (well at least in my head -- SO MUCH takes place just in my head) was all wrong. While Don Henley's 'Last Worthless Evening' and 'Heart of the Matter' seemed perfect, alas -- they weren't. Which is now why Jon Secada is pretty much all I listen to. Henley, despite his wanted optimism in songs of that nature, just seem too somber. 'Never Too Far Away,' and 'Heaven', plus Secada's looks have been extremely inspiring - to the point at my 'real' job, when I need to drown out the newsroom noise and really crank out the work, I plug in my earbuds and turn up the Spanish versions of his tunes. Only problem...with only two years of high school Spanish, I'm kind of lost (sorry, Miss DellaValle!) No matter, I still understand the songs' sentiments.
     So, after ousting Jake and replacing Don, Bruce and Jon moved in and 15,000+ words the outcome.
     Of course, NONE of this would be happening without the steadfast support (read that lovable ass-kicking) I get from my writing-partner-in-crime, Deanna Wadsworth. The day she IMed me to say 'YOU'RE BACK' after beta-reading some the the 15K I'd cranked out...well...definitely I highlight of my writing 'career.'
     So, what's to come? Finishing up the story 'starring' Bruce, ('Known & Wanted') which was inspired by an actual phone conversation with a local sheriff. Not so much the conversation, more like one little comment in that conversation! Oh, if he only knew. After that a May/December thing which stemmed from a side character in the aforementioned story.
     When? Soon, I hope.
     Oh, people in my head, I've missed you, and I'm so happy we're 'talking' again - or should I say 'you're' talking to me.