Zinnia Hope, author of multi-genres and erotic romances; also writing as J. Emberglass

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Tuesday, April 10

M.E. Ellis and I have become good cyber friends and often have some long and rather uh...unusual conversations. So, we decided we'd post our latest conversation for her readers and mine who may wonder what authors/writers discuss. (And just so you know, I fell miserably short of my writing goal for Easter weekend. I'm ready to hang some kids on a nail somewhere!)Okay, the correspondence between M.E. and myself follows, but you've been warned--ROFLMAO!!!

M.E: Z? I want you to answer me honestly here, you know, give me some idea if I really should have been born a bloke or not. Do you fart? Like, loud and freely? Or are you more the reserved kind. Guff on the quiet?

Z: Good grief, what a question! I’m just going to wait until I’m 120 and explode. Seems more economical in the long run. I get enough of the SBDs in the van while driving with one or all of my boys. Noxious fumes in a closed up vehicle with the heater blasting just isn’t my idea of good health. I figure they rip ‘em off enough for everyone so why add to the surplus of methane building up and destroying the ozone layer, ya know?

But that doesn’t mean I won’t blast off from time to time either. Got to let some pressure off the valve, right? Did that the other day while typing at my pc and my middle boy just happened to be standing in the doorway. He flipped. Gawd, you’d’ve thought that I’d just discovered the next X Box or something. He took off running through the house shouting, “Mom ripped off a huge fart! You should’ve heard it!” The door slammed on the patio, and outside, I heard: “You won’t believe this, but Mom ripped off a fart so forceful it blew the fur off the cat!”

I couldn’t help but crack up at that, but then he’s raised by a goofy mother, so what else should I expect?

M.E: LMAO @ image of hairless cat!

So you do blow off then. Good. I mean, I do it all the time. Mine unfortunately sound like the bark of a dog or more like, ‘WAH!’ Like those armpit fart things kids do. I never was able to do armpit farts. Used to be secretly envious of those kids who could. And what about back-of-the-knee farts? I tried it at home once, but it just didn’t work. You know, sat upstairs in my room all alone, trying to squelch one out. If I’d’ve thought about it properly back then, I could have let off a real fart while pretending to do one with my armpit and no one would have been any the wiser. Apart from the smell.

What about farts in the assembly hall. Now there’s an embarrassment. Bloody sound of them used to ricochet off the wooden floor and everyone would know it was you. I curse my speaking arse sometimes.

Z: No. Absolutely not. I may be a nutter as you call me, but I’m not one for farting in public. Now, the husband and the boys can clear a stadium in 2.2 seconds flat. Hell, the husband startled me out of a deep sleep one night. I thought a shotgun had discharged in the room. And no, I’m not trying to be funny. That’s what it REALLY sounded like. The cat even hissed and jumped off the bed to tear out of the bdrm.

M.E: LOL! I’ve done that to CV before. Poor fucker. He always wonders how come I don’t rip a second arsehole the force mine come out. TMI, Z. Sorry.

Z: Well, I like to write such hilarious scenes into my fiction. It makes the characters and setting seem so much more life like. It’s one of the reasons I like Stephen King’s fiction. One such line that I always recall is in IT where Eddie Kasprak’s fat mother rolls over and farts in her sleep. King describes the sound as the sound of a wounded French horn—or something like that. Cracked me up!

M.E: HA! See, I’ve only read one King book, The Green Mile. Can’t seem to get into them. I often wonder if his books will be something that will appeal to me later on in my life, when I have more time to read and delve into his plots. What’s his appeal to you?

Z: I think you’d really like King’s material, especially Misery, It, Gerald’s Game, and Dreamcatcher. King writes people as they really are. No super model heroines or Greek god heroes. They fart, belch, lie, cheat, and smile while doing it. They’re average, everyday people, plus throwing in some paranormal and horror doesn’t hurt anything either. King has a knack for nailing human nature and blending it with horror in such a way that it comes across as very realistic. I don’t like all his novels, but the ones I do are sitting on my bookshelf in beautiful hard covers.

M.E: Hmmm. I watched a bit of the movie, Misery, and got bored. I wondered how a whole film could revolve around some bloke in a bed and stay interesting. CV likes the film, but I think it’s one of those instances where the book would be better. More description of the weirdo woman’s emotions. Just guessing though. But then I prefer books over films any day.

You got any instances where a book was far better than the film and vice versa? As I hardly watch movies I haven’t really got anything to base it on, except for The Green Mile, and I liked both. The voice in TGM book was one of the best I’ve read, and the visual of John Coffee was better in the film than the book. For me anyway.

Z: Holy spotted milk cows on a Popsicle stick! I can’t believe you didn’t finish watching Misery! You’re right about the movie missing a lot of scenes, but they would’ve been very disturbing and gory had the producers put those into the movie. One involved the character Annie running a cop over with a lawn mower. Despite his broken legs, the hero of the story, Sheldon, finds ways to get around the house to nibshit whenever Annie would leave the house, and you’re on the edge of your seat screaming at the screen for him to make it back into bed before she discovers he’s found a way to leave his room, let alone his bed. It’s a story that involves a battle of wits too. Who’s the most devious? Annie in her nutty psychosis, or Sheldon who’s desperate to keep her from killing him and being rescued.

Anyway, I adored both The Green Mile books and the movie. I wailed like a damn baby when Coffee was executed. Blubbered my way through about ten tissues and I’m not kidding! And Percy(sp?) was such a little shit that I wished I could step into the book while reading and kick his ass up around his ears. That’s what I mean about King having a knack for making his characters so realistic.

Let’s see…book better than the film…? King’s Dreamcatcher was much better than the film. I’m not saying that the film wasn’t good—it was excellent and the producers/directors did a fine job of capturing the plot and essence of the story, but there was so much involved in the book that I was disappointed the movie wasn’t turned into one of those 6-hour series like The North and the South or Lonesome Dove. The novel IT was done as a television movie, and imho, it sucked canal water.

One movie that will make you laugh like a loon and sob like a baby is Where the Heart Is. It has such actresses as Natalie Portman and Stockard Channing in it. I could NOT put the book down (Billie Letts is the author) and the movie was almost exactly like the novel. Another one…well, hell. Must’ve farted and lost my train of thought because I forget what the movie and book was now.

M.E: Hhahahahah @ farted. Z farts! Z farts!

Oh yeah, I cried snot bucketfuls at Green Mile. And I swear, that bloke that played Percy, I reckon people would have actually attacked that poor effer in the street because he played him so well.

Where the Heart is, sounds like this shitty programme we have over here. Think it’s about farm life or something. Prolly not the same as the film you’re on about HA!

Z? Have you ever written while drunk. Really drunk? It’s cool because your brain doesn’t do the ‘stop and think’ thing.

Z: No, this Where the Heart Is novel starts out with a young girl who’s crappy looking-for-fame boyfriend abandons her at a Walmart store and she’s 9 months pregnant. She lives in the store at night, leaving IOUs in the store for things that she uses, and during the day, she wanders the Oklahoma town she’s been dumped at. She’s there for a couple weeks, then one night, she goes into labor, and the local librarian, a bit of an eccentric man for good reason, crashes through a plate glass window because he hears her screams. The story snowballs from there. It’s about the odd quirks of life, the people that walk in and out of a person’s life, love (without dwelling on the sex), and how no matter how hard you try, you really can’t plan how your life works out.

Me? Write while drunk? While buzzed, yes. Drunk, no. I’m one of those people who gets silly and very relaxed if I drink too much, followed by very unlady like snoring, lol. I have been known to try to push myself while exhausted or sick and not remember one damn thing I wrote, email or otherwise, during those times. Two winters ago, I came down sick with one of those bugs where you vomit until you nearly turn inside out and are so weak you can’t hold your head up. I had so much Nyquil and cold meds in me that I eventually didn’t feel a thing. I was desperate to make the aches from my fever stop.

Somehow, I queried about 20 literary agents and I don’t remember a damn thing about it. The following days, reply after reply started arriving in my inbox as I was recuperating, and I’m thinking, “what the hell? I never queried these agents.” I looked through my query journal, and sure enough, I had them written down. That scared me, though. Never want to be that sick again.

M.E: Ooooh fugging hell! I’d fair shit me knicks if I did that.

I did a ‘write while drunk’ exercise a couple of times. First time was gibberish but the second time some really emotional stuff came out. And it was surprisingly error free too! Weird.

I know I’ve been online in my old crit group while sloshed. Had a great laugh on this limericks thread. Everyone wrote a limerick about one another, and it seemed we were all on there at the same time. So, when we posted our own limerick, we had to go back and read about 6 others. I cried with laughter that night.

Useless info, but ho hum!

See, with that preggo in Walmart scenario, surely, after all the stuff went missing and she started leaving notes, the store manager would have made sure the shop was searched before it closed each night so she couldn’t hide again?

This is why I don’t watch TV much or movies. I’m the one who always says stuff like, ‘Oh that just wouldn’t happen in real life!’

CV always says, ‘But it’s a moooovie!’

And I say, ‘But just cos it’s a mooovie doesn’t mean it should make us watchers feel dumb!’

Z: Well, I should’ve explained myself more. I didn’t mean that she left IOUs lying around, but kept a notebook full of them for when she finally left the store. That way, once she got a job and a home for her and her baby, she could go back and give the Walmart store the money for everything in the IOU notebook she kept. You should find the book and read it, M.E. I think you’ll fall in love with it. The author really took the time to make every detail perfect.

I do, however, find a lot of e-books and print books with plot holes, though. If I spot such problems, you’d think that most editors would catch them too, but they don’t.

M.E: Yes, I’ve found the same thing. One plot hole was so large I could have sat my arse in it. I think many people would have read at least one book where something didn’t add up.

I’m a bugger for spotting (when I do actually watch films and TV) things that don’t add up scene-wise. Like say, a woman could have put her bag down on the counter and put her hand on it. The scene flicks for one second to the man and back to the woman. And her bag’s gone! Or it’s round her neck. What the hell? Same with books. ‘She closed her eyes’ in one line. Two lines down she’s looking at something. I’m thinking, ‘What, with her eyes closed?’ I know as writers we shouldn’t do a blow-by-blow account of every movement, but stuff like closed eyes stick out for me.

Z: Yup. I do the same thing. I catch a lot of these things in the work newer or just-starting-out authors ask me to crit for them. I don’t crit so much anymore because of lack of time, but when I do, it seems to amaze the writers that I’m so nit picky. It’s not being picky, it’s being thorough. Like you said, if a character has her eyes closed in line one and two lines down she’s looking at something, it goes against the laws of physics unless she has clear or paper thin eyelids, LOL!

M.E: That’d be cool. Paper thin eyelids has just given me a damn cool plot idea. I’ve got stabbings and all sorts going on in my head! Disturbing to be so excited about that. HA! I’m working on a scene for Quits 2. Really creepy. It’s going really well. I’ve written 30K in three and a half days. Yay me! I plan to get it done by tomorrow night.

I’ve just been into town and got a new casserole dish. I only went and smashed the effing thing just now on the doorstep. How like Brenda in AAB could I get?

Hey, and I just got some King books. Hearts in Atlantis. The Girl who Loved Tom Gordon, and Bag of Bones.

Z: I’m curious to know what you think of GIRL. I only got half way through it and stopped. Haven’t read HEARTS but own a copy, plus I’ve read Bag of Bones and really enjoyed it. Good look into King’s life through that one. If you can get a copy of On Writing by King, you’ll like it too.

M.E: Well today I picked up Rose Madder and Dreamcatcher for a QUID! I’m still enjoying Hearts, read when I’m in bed. Trouble is, I don’t want to stop reading even when my eyes are tired and wake up in the middle of the night and pick the bloody thing up again.

I dyed my hair today. I finally have it back to the blonde it used to be before I had a phase of being dark haired. Took a few sets of highlighting sessions to bring it back to normal but I quite like it.

Z: I need to go back to my natural color. I colored mine from its usual dark auburn to a dark coffee color. I. Do. Not. Like. It. The dark coffee color shows the silver that’s growing out. The husband says I should be happy that I have bright silver instead of gray or white. I told him to shut the hell up. I’m too young to have any signs of aging. He said that premature aging is fine, that it just shows that I’ve earned every silver hair that’s appearing—like running a race car too hard and the engine starts to go. “Oh, is that so?” I said. “I guess for a man that premature ejaculation is similar, then? So when it happens it just means the engine's been revved too long.”

That shut him up—and fast.

Are you wiping coffee off the monitor? Good.


So, that's how it is between me and M.E., lol. Might be more information than you were looking for, though, LOL! You can visit M.E. Ellis or check out her novels. The graphic is of her latest called All About Brenda. I haven't read it yet, but it's in my e-book folder to read and review. I've read a couple reviews that say it's hilarious, and judging by her emails, I believe it!


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