Deb Susan Hopes This Qualifies as an Art, if not a Craft…

When I first acquired my reef tank, I made jokes about keeping “a box of water with rocks.” For the first three weeks, that’s all it was. A box of water with rocks I balanced atop one another to  form a kind of “reef.” Not very interesting at that stage, though I watched it every evening anyway. Three weeks in, the live rock and live sand (meaning rocks and sand…

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Deb Susan Loves What THE GLASS WIVES Says About Family

When I read THE GLASS WIVES, I found myself moved by Deb Amy’s writing, drawn to her protagonist (Evie) and emotionally involved in the story and its outcome. I read the book in a single day, which is testament to Deb Amy’s writing and  character-development skills. Deb Amy’s novel took me on an emotional roller-coaster in which I alternately pulled for Evie’s happiness and shared in her frustrations. But most…

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Deb Susan’s cover reminds her of her father … and her son

When I signed my contract with Minotaur for the first three books in the Shinobi Mystery series, I accepted that my cover art was out of my control. And I made a decision: Whatever my cover looked like, I would love it. Many authors compare their books to children, and seeing my cover art bore many resemblances to the birth of my son. I didn’t know what my son would…

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Deb Susan Has Ways of Coping With Secrets

As a transactional publishing attorney and mystery author, you might say secrets are my stock in trade. Most of my work involves issues I cannot talk about in public, and much of my writing … well, yeah. Can’t tell that either. Unfortunately, I’m also a person who likes to share things. This creates a bit of a problem. Not so much with work – the secrets there are not my…

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Deb Susan Manages … Today

Sometimes, life and news and the world at large whirl into a giant maelstrom from which there’s no escape. Stress at home. Death on the news. Disasters on every possible level. It all becomes too much. I think about all the things that could happen, the things that must happen, the things that might happen … and all of a sudden I want to do nothing but roll myself into…

Thursday, April 25, 2013

How Deb Susan Became “the Last Man Standing”

Asking about “the best piece of writing advice I ever received” is a little like asking me to choose between coffee, steaks, and cupcakes. I’ve learned so much, from so many sources and on so many topics that it’s difficult to choose one at the cost of the others. So, at the risk of rewriting the question, I’ll give you “the best piece of writing advice I ever received at…

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Deb Susan Does Rejection … Seahorse Style

It’s Thursday, and we’re talking rejections, which means it’s time for a story. Once upon a time, there was a tiny seahorse named Cygnus. He lived in a beautiful reef filled with corals and fish, but no other seahorses. Cygnus was all alone. He didn’t really mind, at first. He swam around and looked at the corals. He played with the sea fans. He watched the fish. He played seahorse…

Thursday, April 11, 2013

A Word About Our New Sponsor

I am pleased to announce that, effective as of today, The Debutante Ball is sponsored exclusively by Amazon! We didn’t want to announce the sponsorship decision until all the details were set, but we’re very excited to usher in the brand-new Debutante Ball. In the coming weeks, you can expect to see some fantastic new features here at the Amazon Ball.   Among the highlights: – Special guests selected by…

Monday, April 1, 2013

Deb Susan Begrudgingly Admits She Needs to Wait.

I loathe waiting. I have no patience. And this isn’t a new development. All my life, I’ve tried to hurry the milestones … but after more than four decades of rushing, I’ve finally realized that the hurried thing never turns out as well as the one that comes along in its proper time. Hurry the cupcakes? You’d better like cupcake soup. (But it sounds kind of nasty.) Hurry a coral?…

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Deb Susan’s Dialogue Has a Limp and an Eyepatch

In his book, Save the Cat!, Author and screenwriter Blake Snyder advised all writers to give every character “a limp and an eyepatch” – an easily identifiable characteristic that sets the character apart from all the others in the scene. I love this advice, and take it to heart – and I use it with dialogue too. When creating characters, I write a journal entry in each character’s voice –…

Thursday, March 21, 2013