Buy Diane's Books   Sign Up for the Newsletter   Contact Diane   Follow Diane on Twitter Subscribe to the RSS Feed
Diane Whiteside, Inveterate Romantic

Archive for the 'Me, myself' Category

The Library Arrives

December 1, 2008 | Better than chocolate,Me, myself,Serendipity

Six months after moving into my new house, my library is finally unpacked – all sixty-plus boxes of it. (I stopped counting at sixty.) I’d given myself a year to finish the job, planning it around research for books. Unfortunately, I hadn’t realized I’d be writing this particular manuscript right now, a tale which depends on one and only one reference book. And guess what? Yup, you’ve got it right: my aspiring anal-retentive self may have labeled all those boxes – but I hadn’t marked which one contained the unique reference book upon which this tale depended. So I needed to open box after box after box until I found it.

Well, I needed to find and enjoy my library again, right? My bookaholic self certainly thought so. My back disagreed but it was overruled.

Now I’m enjoying having all my treasures out in the open where I can see and touch them. All those dictionaries next to my desk, and my volumes of poetry just a few steps farther. My enormous Civil War atlas finally rejoices in a tall enough shelf, while Mount TBR has a bookcase to itself. Okay, it’s deliberately only a small bookcase but it is a dedicated one!

Some odd juxtapositions popped up along the way, too. Cats and baseball coexist on the same shelf. Okay, maybe that’s because the number of books on each subject worked out that way – or maybe cats and baseball players both scamper after balls? Perhaps. And Chaco Canyon, home of fascinating Native American ruins, lives right next to Washington’s spies, who in turn snuggles up to the Battle Cry of Freedom. My family took one look at that grouping and very firmly told me that I really needed to start writing more about pre-Civil War America! Harrumph!

As for fiction – well, at one point, Emma Holly was cozily sandwiched between Robert E. Howard’s Conan and E.M. Hull’s The Sheik. (Personally, I suspect she might have enjoyed their company.) If I find another auto-buy author starting with a ‘D’, I’m in serious trouble; that bookcase is already groaning. I’m barely coping with Kathleen Dante‘s career, since I grab everything she puts out.

Of course, there was the horrific moment when I realized a single one-foot-wide bookcase was expected to cope with four auto-buy authors: Emma Holly, Linda Howard, Angela Knight, and Mercedes Lackey. Ack! Peace was restored when Angela Knight and Mercedes Lackey moved to another bookcase. Hopefully, they can coexist with Elizabeth Lowell, since I buy everything she publishes on the first day it’s out. But if not, I’ve got a few spare shelves hidden away for expansion purposes… Life is good.

And if you’re wondering where that unique reference book was, which started the mad rush to unpack my entire library? Right where Murphy would have predicted it: the last stack, the bottom row, and the last box.

12:14 am | 4 Comments  

If Music Be the Food of Love

April 27, 2008 | Me, myself

If music be the food of love, as the Bard said – well, it’s also a heck of a good incentive!

Neil Diamond will be the coach this week on American Idol. I totally admire him as a songwriter. “LA’s fine but it ain’t home. New York’s home but it ain’t mine no more” is the most perfect definition of a transplant’s anguish I’ve ever heard. I’m a third-generation Californian living in Virginia and I love both states – but I still catch myself singing that song at least once a year.

The man just has the knack of catching my feelings and putting them into song. I’ll be fascinated to hear which songs the Idol contestants choose, especially David Cook and Syesha.

Next week is also going to be what one writer friend calls “Diane Whiteside’s Psycho Week.” I prefer to think of as the week when my 60 boxes of books come home. Yes, that’s right – we’ve bought a house and we’re about to move into it, God willing and the creek don’t rise. Of course, unpacking all those books, plus all the ones still living with me – have I mentioned those absolutely necessary for Book dot Now? – is going to take a ton of work. That’s where the need for incentives comes in.

Guess what kind of treats I went for? That’s right – music. You’re looking at the proud possessor of concert tickets. For the first time in I don’t want to think of how long, I’m going to take time off from writing and indulge myself. Of course, I’ll have to get Book dot Now finished and my books put away first.

Then I’ll get to see Neil Diamond live in concert! Yeehaw! He is a marvelous performer.

I also bought tickets for the Young Dubliners and Scythian. I do love me some Celtic rock and as for an entire evening of it? Heaven, absolute heaven.

Next step – find more musical incentives to get the books even faster. Hmm, what shall I choose?

12:08 am | 2,430 Comments  

RT and Moi

April 22, 2008 | Me, myself,News

Hey, I really did make it to RT! I hung out with some really good friends, including Barbara Vey of Publishers Weekly, and met fabulous superfans.

Check out Barbara Vey’s great drive-by video!

10:01 pm | 1 Comment  

Sixty Boxes

March 5, 2008 | Me, myself,Quirky notions

We’re getting ready to sell the house. (Oh joy unforeseen…) As part of this thrill, we get to open up vistas throughout the house, so potential buyers can see how much space actually exists in our little townhouse. (Riiight.)

In other words, everything we can possibly live without gets to go into storage so strangers can traipse through our home. If this works, we get more money. I call this A Big Incentive. What I’m having a really hard time with is watching all my so-called spare books go into storage.

Every piece of fiction – gone. All of my Linda Howard collection, Elizabeth Lowell, Angela Knight, Georgette Heyer, Lora Leigh, volumes of Secrets, and more – vanished into boxes and locked up. Okay, they’re carefully labeled and I do have a key. But can I wander over to my bookshelf and grab one? Can I look up a quick bit of DREAM MAN for a fast bit of inspiration? Or how about THESE OLD SHADES for Vidal’s sublime way of putting pretentious idiots in their place? No, I have to rely upon my memory. Well, I do have these well-loved, well-thumbed keepers memorized but, even so, my friends aren’t with me any more!

I even had to prune my research collection. I pray my editor doesn’t want a detailed explanation of the Texas Ranger history behind BOND OF DARKNESS; most of those books are now sleeping peacefully. My Arab histories of the Crusades – well, I made it through BOND OF BLOOD so I probably don’t need them any more, even if they do help explain Don Rafael’s broad cultural tolerances. I even had to pack up many of my Civil War histories, which is dreadful for somebody who likes to prowl Civil War sites on free weekends.

Still, who’d have thought I could take sixty boxes of books out – and still have so many books left in the house? I still have my basic research library here, more than capable of taking me through the next Devil book and my 1920’s paranormal romance.

Plus I do have a few novels stashed away. My Treo is still stuffed with ebooks, including NY Times bestsellers thanks to eReader. I’ve got a complete collection of JD Robb novels hidden there.

And my copy of Dakota Cassidy’s THE ACCIDENTAL WEREWOLF arrived the day after my other novels went into storage.

Hmm, I seem to hear a novel calling to me. Please excuse me while I go check out Dakota’s book.

Happy reading, friends!

12:25 am | 5 Comments  

Full-Time Author, Temporarily That Is

February 18, 2008 | Me, myself,Quirky notions

For the past two weeks, I’ve been enjoying the life of a full-time writer. I finished working at one ordinary day job and found myself with a two week gap before I started the next day job. So I happily trotted out into the wide world, calling myself a full-time author, and armed with a long to-do list. Number one, of course, was to write three-four hours every day.


I really should have known better. The last time I tried being a full-time author, real life smacked me hard in the face and I wound up working ferociously, just to keep my head above water and finish all my deadlines on time. How do full-time authors keep away all the people who believe they stay home to be social? Or run errands? Or keep an eye on their project?

I think successful full-time authors must have a hidden ninja warrior inside them, who leaps out yelling, “Aiiieeeee!” and chops through all the ridiculous odds and ends, in order to protect their writing time. I’ll try cultivating mine harder next time.

But tomorrow it’s back to the grindstone at a new day job. I’m so used to that kind of tight schedule, it already feels like coming home.


11:44 pm | Comments are off  

Harmony and Choices

December 30, 2007 | Me, myself,Quirky notions

Well, Christmas is past and my family’s now knee-deep into putting away presents. We all know which one is the most popular – our Keurig K-cup brewer. Thanks to it, everyone can drink their favorite hot beverage at the same time! Very smooth Columbian decaffeinated coffee, extra bold organic coffee from Indonesia, chamomile tea – anything! Just choose a K-cup containing the variety you want, pop it into the brewer, press a button, and voila! There’s also a nifty little adapter if you want it to brew something that doesn’t already come in a K-cup. (Yes, this family is all about choices, choices, choices.) We’ve used the little darling every night since it arrived – and no, I’m not being paid for this endorsement! LOL

In fact, we’re having so much fun that we’re actually finding excuses to hang out in the family room, close to the K-cup brewer for our second cup. I usually indulge myself in an orgy of movies and books when I finish a book but this year’s version is pretty spectacular. We’re actually making a list of which movies to see first – which means what is everyone else willing to see twice, since I saw almost none of this year’s new releases. (Hey, I wrote two books in ten months, including a first draft in 3 ½ months!)

So far we’ve managed LIVE FREE OR DIE HARD and TRANSFORMERS. THE ILLUSIONIST, THE HOLIDAY and STARDUST are on the list. Last night we saw SWEENEY TODD (Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter were wonderful but be prepared for a lot of blood) then came home and watched football! NATIONAL TREASURE: BOOK OF SECRETS is coming up soon (New Year’s Day, anyone?). Now we’re discussing whether ENCHANTED is best watched in the theatres (ooh, wide-screen and big speakers!) or on video (replay whenever you want). ALIENS VS PREDATOR: REQUIEM has been ruled out as a group activity. And I get to watch 300 as many times as I want. Whoopee!

We’re even reading books together. I’ve cracked a few research books for the next Devil romance, and even managed to read some romances, thus cutting down my To-Be-Read pile. Meanwhile, the rest of the family is comfortably sitting across the room with their book, and their cup of coffee, also enjoying life.

Harmony through different choices. Isn’t that a huge part of what makes for the good life?

5:42 pm | 5 Comments  

Hanging Out Today at Brava

December 27, 2007 | Me, myself,News,Quirky notions,The stories


I’m blogging today over at Brava Authors about pre-New Year’s Eve fun.

Please stop by and let me know what you like to do!


8:00 am | Comments are off  





  1. Better than chocolate
  2. Me, myself
  3. News
  4. Quirky notions
  5. Serendipity
  6. The stories
  7. Tuning the instrument
  8. Uncategorized


  1. April 2012
  2. March 2012
  3. February 2012
  4. January 2012
  5. November 2011
  6. October 2011
  7. September 2011
  8. August 2011
  9. July 2011
  10. June 2011
  11. May 2011
  12. April 2011
  13. March 2011
  14. February 2011
  15. January 2011
  16. December 2010
  17. November 2010
  18. October 2010
  19. September 2010
  20. August 2010
  21. July 2010
  22. June 2010
  23. May 2010
  24. April 2010
  25. March 2010
  26. February 2010
  27. January 2010
  28. November 2009
  29. September 2009
  30. April 2009
  31. March 2009
  32. February 2009
  33. January 2009
  34. December 2008
  35. November 2008
  36. September 2008
  37. August 2008
  38. July 2008
  39. June 2008
  40. April 2008
  41. March 2008
  42. February 2008
  43. January 2008
  44. December 2007
  45. November 2007
  46. October 2007
  47. September 2007


Copyright © 2007-2024 Diane Whiteside | Privacy Policy and Disclosures
Web Design and Hosting by Swank Web Design | Photography by Anastacia Campbell | Powered by WordPress