Friday, September 29, 2006

Separated at Birth?




















I mean, I'm just saying. Jud, ever the history and political buff has Chairman Mao's book, and every time I see it in the guest bedroom I can't help but think, "Raisins?"

Anyone else see the separated at birth similarity here??? Are we imagining a big work collective picking grapes? Seriously, I just want to know if I'm having a freaky after image from the "sun" or if, in fact, these two emblems share some disconcerting similarity.
Talk amongst yourselves...

Thursday, September 28, 2006

I'm on WNBC!






I'm so thrilled! Check out my feature on WNBC--there's an interview and a FABULOUS review of PARALLEL HEAT!!

Btw, the word is that HEAT is already at Borders/Walden's, and of course it will be distributed wide on Tuesday, October 3, my official publication date.

Meanwhile, I had a ton of fun with Michelle's interview at WNBC. She had some amazing questions, and I'm proud of the post.
hugs to all! :)
D

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

I HEART My Publisher


Wish I could find a heart symbol. :) Lately Blogger just won't post pics.

Anyway, this is the most amazing thing ever--I absolutely love writing for Penguin Putnam. They put up my gorgeous trailer!! Right on the main page. Check it out:

Penguin Putnam Website

Right there with Laurell K. Hamilton and Jayne Krentz!

Woo hoo!!

Learning New Skills--Life as a pom pom fluffer

So, I was never the cheerleader. I mean, really. For those who know me, this probably comes as no great surprise, and I'm not talking about looks--I'm talking about that yee-ha gracefulness that just isn't part of my personal chemistry. I certainly possessed the enthusiasm for it, and there was probably no greater fan of spirit ribbons and pep rallies than yours truly. Secretly, too, I probably would have loved to be a cheerleader, but it just wasn't my draw from the high school deck.

But it's amazing how parenting brings things around full circle. Last night about midnight I sat in my kitchen working on Tyler's pom poms for her first game of the season tonight. She's a pee wee cheerleader. Anyway, this years pom poms were cheap and have to be "self-fluffed." And I'm sitting there, fluffing away while Jud plays guitar for me, and I suddenly say to him: "Wow, I was never the cheerleader, but I'm the MOM of the cheerleader." After that, we pretty much discussed how life has a way of ultimately allowing you to achieve dreams, no matter how silly they might be.

More than that, I think it's about learning new skills no matter how old you get. Recently Tyler and I made a movie (I think I told you this) using Microsoft Moviemaker. I can't tell you the pride I felt realizing that I had mastered this computer program, managed to blend both video and stills--and actually burn it to DVD!

My next skill that I've decided to acquire--and you'll laugh at this one--but I want to get into sewing. I used to love to sew with my stepmom, and I figure that it would be good for my daughters to learn about sewing. Or maybe knitting is a better idea b/c I'd have all the super cool sweaters to show for it. Dunno.

The BIGGEST thing I want to learn, though? I'm talking skills, not something warm/fuzzy like, "How to be a better friend" (though I'm working on that big time too) I want to learn how to be a super fit person. I got back in the gym yesterday after a big absence and every part of my upper body is sore today, but I think it's never too late to change the way you perceive yourself mentally. I can reprogram my brain and see myself as fit, sleek, athletic and addicted to running. :)

And on that note. Check THIS Guy out. He is SO fit, sleek, athletic, etc. It's enough to truly motivate you. It's a good time to post the cover, too, because PARALLEL HEAT goes on sale in just ONE MORE WEEK! Woo hoo! I'll acquire a new life skill then: Not biting my nails from excitement/nervousness. lol.

(OKAY, NOTE: I hate blogger right now. I can only post a pic every tenth time. So NO, I couldn't post my Parallel Heat cover. GRRR)
Hugs to all my wonderful blog pals!
Deidre

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Parallel Heat Trailer goes LIVE!

Check out Deidre's new trailer for PARALLEL HEAT and The Parallel Series. Oooo and there's a surprise at the end. Add it everywhere if you think it's cool (blogs, myspace... etc.. I'm just giving examples )


Get this video and more at MySpace.com

Monday, September 18, 2006

I Am in HEAVEN!!


Okay, I am so thrilled with this cover! I'm basically over the moon because it's so lush and gorgeous and hot, hot, hot!! :)

Tell me what you guys think! Hugs, D

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Is Reality Still in Vogue?

I'm curious, honestly--I know American Idol continues to jam along, and I see a huge proliferation of these reality programs still abounding, but I want to get the pulse of the Net. Do y'all think reality program is starting to wane? I noticed a big push for the BACHELOR: ROME (Maybe they should do one at Myrtle Beach--the Beachelor....)

I will admit that even my morbid sense of curiosity got the better of me. This guy is touted as a real prince. A multi-millionaire with a castle, etc. Can this honestly be for real? Or did they buy a title for the guy and prop him up as a puppet BACHELOR prince? One must wonder.

I'm out there trawling around for new programming. Started watching HOUSE, which I'd heard about. Bryan Singer (USUAL SUSPECTS, X-MEN) is behind it in some fashion. Show creator or executive producer or whatever. That caught my attention, and I've watched a few episodes and found it genuinely engaging. On the flip side, I wanted to get into EUREKA after hearing critical raves, but so far just don't click with it. Boo. Wanted more good sci-fi channel programming to look forward to.

Meanwhile, back here on the home front I have (gasp, gasp) a DATE tonight!! With my husband, that is, in case some of you were freaking out. There's a really cool restaurant here in Madison, Town 220, and its in an historic warehouse and has a New Yorkish feel (the owner is from NYC.) Anyway, it's kind of the "it" spot on weekends, and we're heading over there for dinner and to generally have an adult moment.

I slept 13 hours last night. I think I'm still recovering from finishing Parallel Seduction (which is in with my editor now! Woo hoo!) and last weekend's Denver conference. In case some of you missed it, I did relay details about the whole event lower down on this blog.

Other events... I mastered a new life skill this weekend. There is nothing cooler than learning a new ability, especially if it involves technology. Judson's bday is coming up and the girls and I made him a movie! We're giving it to him early, and he won't be on this blog before we do, so I can confess all here and now. I actually learned how to use Microsoft movie maker, edited in bits of our home movies, overlaid them with music, and interspersed the cuts with stills. Amazing!! The best part? Tyler has a book report coming up and we'd already decided we wanted to make a commercial for the book (amazing again! This is so what I do for a living! Easy!). Now we can use this film editor together and make the commercial.

Well, over and out. hugs to all.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

The Time is NOW!

Yes, I am still here too. :) I do want to be sure that y'all saw the several posts I'd put up here prior to the roll call one. I think maybe those were missed. Right now, though, wanted you to know I'm about to be chatting at Romance Junkies. Doing my agent gig and fielding questions at 8 pm Eastern. I'll be back, though! Hugs

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Here's My Question...


Who is still reading this blog? I know I was totally negligent for a while, but are you guys still out there? If you're still reaidng, how about checking in on this thread. :) I admit it, it's hard to balance blogging and the scope of my life, but I LOVE it. And I honestly hope to post a lot more regularly. Are you guys still reading?

Let's do a roll call. :)

And be sure to look below. I've posted a number of new blog columns.
Hugs! :)
D

The Hotel Good Life

When I travel, the hotel is critical. Now, don’t get me wrong—I’m not a total diva, but I do need a definite comfort level, otherwise I start feeling a bit homesick. It’s just too hard to be away from the kidlets, the soulmate, and my digs otherwise. The hotel here in Denver is definitely well above average, but there have been a few glitches.

Exhibit A) Upon arrival, there was a stiff pair of men’s briefs in my top dresser drawer. Ewwww, had total flashes from Blue Crush where they were maids and found that condom, and brought it out to the offender (the big football player guy on the beach). This was a serious “need tongs” (not thongs) moment.

Exhibit B) Last night, while trying to avail myself of the ever-important pay-per-view—the crucial linchpin while traveling and attending conferences—it simply wouldn’t cooperate. This, of course, after the public relations person here had given me a free one-night rental to make up for the stiffy undies. So, no dice; no movie. Bummer.

I sink into advancing through channels, resigned to life without a current release movie—or “ahead of release” or whatever it is they bill these hotel pay-per-view films as being. I find a very emotional, intense 09/11 special. I’m completely rapt. And what should happen, but?

Exhibit C) My television becomes possessed by a porno demon. My programming is disrupted, and without me so much as hitting the remote, the pay-per-view begins scrolling through the variety of porno flicks available to hotel viewers. It’s like “Boobs Gone Wild!” and on it goes—over and over, as I watch the TV assume a life of its own, scrolling through these various selections semi-demonically. Am I using the clicker? No. Have I selected a thing? No. But my television begins moving, free-form, through about twelve different XXX flicks, and buttocks and boobs appear on the screen. And dang if the stupid thing doesn’t start CLICKING ORDER!!! All without me selecting a damn thing! The television has assumed its own life, is acting on its own spirit—it even occurs to me that a neighbor might be really into this stuff, but his remote is somehow working on MY television.

I phone the desk. “Um, hello, my television is possessed by a porno demon,” I say.

The woman chuckles. “Uh, huh, you freak.” She doesn’t say it, but I swear I can hear her thoughts crackle over the line.

I begin narrating, as the screen scrolls through the various film choices, as I see boobs and buttocks and personal parts. I’m going, “Oh my GOSH!!! It’s selecting, “Babe-A-Licious on Ice!”

My hotel clerk responds—quite calmly, I’ll grant her, “Well, when it finds Debbie Does Dallas, I’m going to be really afraid.”

I say, “This is real, and my television is now officially porno-possessed.”

“Ma’am, unplug your TV and reboot,” she tells me—as if she’s heard this plenty of other times, by the way.

Maybe it’s just quite late; maybe I’m just quite tired, but the fact that I’m watching my television perform free-form actions—all of which are directing it toward charging these nefarious flicks to my credit card—just doesn’t leave me very calm.

“Fine,” I say. “I’ll see if that works.”

Moments later, my TV is released. It’s as if it’s SINGING, “I Shall be Released.”

No more porno demons.

I phone the desk woman back. “It works now,” I say.

She chortles. “Good, Ms. Knight. I’m glad you’re free of your porno demons.”

And that leaves me with exhibit D) My last night in the hotel, still in possession of my free movie coupon—which is meant to ameliorate the stiffy-nasty-male-undies… still isn’t redeemable, because I still can’t engage the movie function.

I find more 9/11 programming, find an A.J. Hammer examination of why Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes hid their baby… and ultimately discover a TNT movie. Ah, life in a hotel. So nice: No soulmate battling me for the remote, no reason not to watch asinine programming. Life on the road, as tiring as it may be, has its moments.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Java! Java!


I'm in Denver, and it's very early in the morning here--not quite so early at home. Don't you just love traversing time changes? :) You basically wind up with your ass on your shoulder--pardon my French, but it's just true. I'm here for the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers Conf, and what a fabulous group of people.

Today I had the pleasure of doing something I'd never done before, which was having a "workshop" with 6 authors where we read work aloud and critiqued and whatnot. My homies were totally made of stern stuff, and were able to take my commentary--and the group's--without wigging out or suffering personal crises. It was great fun--to be face-to-face with writers, talking craft. I wish they would actually let me out of my agent cage more often. It was very satisfying, and again, I had such a wonderful group of writers. Everyone in the room had talent, which made our group endeavor much more fun.

I participated in the author signing, and sold out of my books pretty quickly. YEA! This is a good thing, even while I'm naturally thinking, "Why didn't I bring extra books!" :) After that, my wonderful friend Kristin Nelson had arranged dinner at a swanky Denver restaurant--I mean, honestly? How often do you get to eat Mexican/Asian fusion? The food was freaking out of this world. A group of pub folks went together, and eating little won ton tacos was just beyond fun for this mom. :)

I'm tired, of course, but that's nothing new--I am ALWAYS tired. Always. But it's all about living big. This is an amazing conference, and I'm thankful to have been invited. I may even have found a new client!
Deidre

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Gonna Be a Big Star

By Deidre Knight and Judson Knight

So I saw Counting Crows this past weekend, as I recounted on my Amazon blog. And I’m hearing a certain line in my head, one from “Mr. Jones”:
We all wanna be big, big stars, but we’ve all got different reasons for
that…

I’ve been moved over the years, following my favorite band, to hear their various permutations of this very popular song. It was their first hit, an anthem of youthful aspirations. The desire to leave your mark, to be Bob Dylan, to be at the very top of your particular game; all of these emotions were embodied in their jangling first hit. Yet the song, for all its charming and na├»ve aspirations, is still infused with a certain wistfulness, as represented by the above line. I guess we could call it wistfulness in advance. Seeing the horizon, the fame to come, and knowing that no matter the drive, the motivations might not be pure… or at the very least, totally different for every person who hears the song and wants to be something bigger. It was a track they cut on their debut album before the first flush of fame had touched them, yet you can already hear the argument and regret.

In 1997 when I saw the Crows at Chastain Park in Atlanta, and was fortunate enough to be in the front row, they rendered another version of this anthem. It started with a slow, haunting version of “So you wanna be a rock ‘n roll star….” by the Byrds. The song gained a whole new context: They’d broken out, become famous and achieved their dreams. But the whole journey had a bitter, broken edge now that they stood gazing down from the other side of the wall.

On very rare occasions, you can dissect pop lyrics as if they were poetry, tracing the provenance of a line, seeing the multi-tiered meanings within an overall rock context. Yes, it sounds ridiculous, but let’s play for a moment here.

BIG STAR. One of the biggest bands you’ve never heard of, influencer of countless others, from the Crows to the Replacements to REM to the Bangles. It could be said of Big Star, as has been said of the Velvet Underground, that not many people bought their albums, but everybody who did started a band. Doubt that the Crows were truly referencing Big Star with this song? Try this: They covered “The Ballad of El Goodo” in concert numerous times, a song that appeared on Big Star’s #1 Record—an epic title, promising so much future that failed to materialize. As with the Crows, there’s a tone of looking backward on defeat—yet infused with almost heroic optimism. Bravery in the face of “unbelievable odds,” as the song says.

A few years later, another favorite band of mine, the Jayhawks, came out with the song “Big Star,” a portrait of an artist confronting the fact that he may never achieve the dreams that motivated him in his youth. He waxes philosophical about his propensity for “perfecting the finest art of wasting hours,” and longs for the accoutrements of success: “fine bourbon, Cuban cigars.”

With a title like “Big Star,” we can only assume they are alluding to the sadly under-received geniuses embodied by the band Big Star—especially given their overwhelming musical debt to the group. But this is also their story, that of a group who has toiled and toured, and has every reason for success based on the accessibility of their sound—yet has never known more than a modicum of fame.

So now we have two separate bands, each influenced by a little-known sleeper of a muse, what you might call the Great Inspiration, and each showing a different side of the seductive-yet-tawdry price of fame.

For what purpose do we pursue our dreams? To be known by the masses or because the need to create is so compelling, so driving, that we can’t help but chase the dream?

Would I respond to these themes if I’d been someone for whom everything had gone perfectly in life? I doubt it. But then I wouldn’t know as much as I do now, or appreciate as much as I do in the beauty of the things I encounter—like these. It’s the twin pairing of longing and regret, the yin and yang of what might be and isn’t, that compels me as a writer.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

The Hard Left Hook



So I’m watching a little film called MATADOR starring Pierce Brosnan. Never been all that crazy about him as an actor mostly because he’s always played the “way too beautiful.” I like yummy men just like all the rest of us, but there’s something about his easy-greasy way that’s never set quite right with me. And then, as I say, I plug in this DVD, cheese-ballish and whatever. Seems like a low-rent DVD.

And then the unexpected happens… that opening hook that catches me off-guard—in a book or a movie—and makes me keep on going beyond my planned interaction. I’d given this one about ten minutes, but then, all of a sudden, ole Pierce wakes in bed with a Bond beauty. Yep, what I expected—right until he snags her nail polish, hidden in her purse, and begins to lovingly paint his toenails in a glittery, shiny purple polish. Um, what’s up with that? And so I’m completely drawn in.

So, I’m trying to think of other strong examples of this sort of thing, the movie or book with an early setup that catches you off guard. Want to play with me and offer up examples?