Monday, November 12, 2012

The Next Big Thing Bloghop

The wonderful and talented Ms. Fiona McLaren tagged me to do a blog post for “The Next Big Thing.”  My blog is so woefully untended I’m surprised it hasn’t grown weeds, but, in an effort to kickstart this site, I figure I can take a few moments during Monday Night Football (Here we go, Steelers!) to answer a few questions.

What is the working title of your book?


Where did the idea come from for the book?

I honestly don’t remember.  Most of my ideas come from the shower, so I assume I had some sort of lightning bolt moment of inspiration then…just without all the electrocution one would expect from mixing electricity, water, and paranormal romance.

What genre does your book fall under?

Adult Paranormal Romance

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

This question will be answered with a big ol’ “…um…”

I have absolutely no idea.  Here’s my terrible little secret—I can’t pciture faces in my mind.  I know my MC is punkish with multi-colored hair and brown eyes, but, beyond that, I got nothing.  I have a good memory, but faces are a blur.  Even when I dream, I can’t imagine what people look like.

However, I know what she *sounds* like.  My MC is part of a punk band, and, for the perfect representation of their sound, look no farther than a new band called “Icon for Hire,” a female-fronted punk band.  Their album played on loop while I wrote the book.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Ally Wright could rid her coven of their stalkerish witch hunter enemies if her sisters would take the constant threat seriously, her soul mate would ignore his pacifistic tendencies, and everyone would use their growing power to launch an offensive instead of playing with a supernatural dating service to divine the identities of their soul mates.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

I’m a traditional publishing type of gal. 

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

About five months.

Who or What inspired you to write this book?

No real inspiration.  I wrote a more serious paranormal romance novel about two years ago, but I wanted a new series with a younger feel to it.  Not YA, but a younger, cooler protagonist.  I figured I would also twist the genre a bit.  I wanted all my books to begin with each protagonist knowing exactly who they would end up with.  The first chapter of FIRECRACKER introduces all my would-be heroines to their soul mates.  The series has the romance at the beginning and shows how each girl will screw it up before they get their happily-ever-after. 

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

My MC suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder and depression, but she manages both by pouring every last bit of her energy into her music.  I wanted to add a bit of realism to her character—even though she has her romance and happy ending, the memory of her trauma will stick with her for the rest of the series.  She will still have a bit of character growth for the next books, and her cameos will be entertaining.

So, thanks to Ms. Fiona for her invite to join the blog hop.  And, if you’re jonesing for more WIP sneak-peaks, check out Petre Pan’s blog and her YA scifi novel--NEODYMIUM SACRIFICE.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Pitch Live! "Firecracker"

Pitch Live Contest!

Title:  Firecracker
Genre: Adult Paranormal Romance
Word Count:  90,000 Words
Twitter: @Katrina_Sincek

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Peanut Brittle?

So...I make peanut brittle.  Really good peanut brittle.

The chocolate covered peanut brittle in question
A few months ago, I started making peanut brittle.  And it wasn't nearly this pretty.  Or yummy.  That came with skill.  That came with...the vision.

Okay, not a vision-vision, but it was pretty damn magical.

One of my batches...didn't turn out right.  The previous attempts were okay, but this time something went wrong.  What poured out of the pan was certainly was brittle, and it contained peanuts.  But it looked pale and lifeless--and this is prime pot/kettle territory here as I actively avoided the sun all summer. 

I was disappointed and candy-less.  I went to bed and, bestowed like an angel from the heavens, the answer woke me from my sleep.  (Read:  My life is so boring dreams about peanut brittle send me racing from bed.)

For this particular batch, I forgot to add butter.  I secured my house from the wrath of a deranged Paula Deen, and tried making the peanut brittle again the next morning.

The result? Perfect Peanut Brittle.

And it has remained tasty, golden brown, and, occasionally, smothered in chocolate ever since.  I deemed myself the peanut brittle prophet, though my family has refrained from addressing me as such.

Not the greatest story, but it might alleviate some confusion about the blog title.  For anyone curious, the recipe follows:

Peanut Brittle!
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp (probably more) vanilla
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup water
1 cup corn syrup
3 TBS butter
Peanuts (Probably 2 cups, depending on your peanuty preference) 
Palmful of cinnamon and nutmeg
Greased cookie sheet
*Candy Thermometer!*

  • Combine the water, sugar, and water in a sturdy pot at a medium-high heat
  • Stir the mixture until it begins to boil
  • (Alton Brown's trick) Once the mixture boils, cover with a lid for three minutes.  
    • This will form condensation on the side of the pot
    • The condensation will roll down along the sides and dissolve any errant sugar crystals
  • While the mixture is boiling, toss your peanuts with a little cinnamon and nutmeg or pumpkin pie spice
  • Once the mixture reaches 300 Degrees F, add in your peanuts and butter
  • Stir like CrAzY until the mixture turns a golden amber color
    • This might take a few minutes, just keep stirring to prevent burning
  • Remove from heat and add your vanilla and baking soda
    • Be warned! The mixture will foam with the addition of baking soda
  • Immediately pour out onto your cookie sheet and spread the mixture thin with a greased or silicone spatula
  • Wait for the mix to harden and say goodbye to your functioning pancreas