Wednesday, May 30, 2007

The Question Unasked

Susan had an interesting blog today about what constitutes a criminally negligent parent. It made me think about something that has been bothering since I first heard about the little British girl who was kidnapped in Portugal.

When I saw it, the question that immediately sprang to mind was, "What the HELL were they thinking?"

As I heard, and later read, the parents left their three year old daughter alone in a room in a foreign country, while they went out to eat and she subsequently disappeared.

Now they have the whole world offering rewards for her return and they've even met with the pope for consolation. Yet nowhere have I seen that question raised - why in the world would they have left a small child alone like that? She was asleep and they were hungry? For crying out loud, one of you go get something and bring it back while the other watches the kids!

I, too, hope she is returned safe and sound. But while everyone is pouring their hearts out to these parents, shouldn't they also ask them what the hell were they thinking? It's illegal in this country to leave a child alone before they reach 14 years of age. Parent who do so, and are found out, are generally charged with child endangerment and neglect, sometimes they even lose custody if it's bad enough.

Maybe I'm being harsh and judgemental, but I think those parents are partially responsible for what happened and should also be held accountable.

I'm not a perfect parent either, but this (and the case Susan blogged about) are just two more reminders that "common sense" is not common at all.

Ok, I'm done ranting now. Just had to get that off my chest before I pack up my computer.

Have a great June, people.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Angry White People

Sometimes you have to laugh at life's appalling absurdities. Like the pictures I shared with a coworker today, for example.

See, I work on our intra- and inter-net sites at work, as well as create many of our publications and online learning modules, so I have to access to numerous photographs and graphics. I recently received a set of pics from someone in multi-media that were taken during a Multi-Cultural Task Force meeting - you know, a group put together to promote peace, harmony and unity, while celebrating diversity in the workplace.

Hmm.... I looked them over, trying to find a good shot... what's this? They all have something in common... our loving, multi-cultural task force is comprised of all caucasions who appear to be in a heated, bitter discussion. This one is glaring at that one, that one has her fingers in this one's face, all are late 40's to early 50's, and nary a color appears other than white, white, white. There was, however, one man. I guess he added diversity to the otherwise all female group.

I had to laugh. It beat crying. Maybe the photographer meant them to be an example of what NOT to do? One can hope. After all, false hope springs eternal...

As for my own angry white face, I got spam this morning from an email designed to look exactly like my own from! Those b@$t@rds! So I apologize in advance to anyone who may receive spam that looks like it came from me.

In fact, any emails from me should be regarded with at least some suspicion through the first week of July. Starting June 1, my computer time will be severely limited - mainly confined to sneaking in at work - as I'll have my computer in storage while I'm temporarily homeless.

After next week, I may move out to San Francisco and borrow a towel from Clifford. :)

Have a great weekend, ya'll.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007


I also posted this on my other blog, since dingbat that I am, I thought I was posting it here - but nevertheless, here you go... :)

Since a few male (and non-romance writing) readers have suggested lately that they might try their hands at romance and/or erotic romance, I thought I’d list a few publishers here.

Note: None of these publishers require agents to submit, and some are also open to genres other than romance.

In alphabetical order:

Aphrodites Apples (new e-publisher; they published my story “Unmasked” in their Masquerade anthology, volume 3. I’ve found them to be very nice and responsive - a fun group of women currently run this company)

Aspen Mountain (e-publisher of most genres)

Avon (large mainstream publisher of “large” romance - usually historical romance)

Cerridwen Press (e-books & paperbacks of most genres - the non-erotic offshoot of Ellora’s Cave)

Changeling Press (e-publisher of all genres of erotica - (romance/horror/sci-fi/fantasy, etc.) have been around a few years)

Cobblestone Press (e-pub, mainly romance & erotica)

Dorchester (large mainstream publisher of most genres of romance)

Ellora's Cave (e-books & paperbacks of erotic romance - was one of the first and largest publishers of romantic erotica in e-book form)

eXstacy eBooks (e-publisher of erotica and erotic romance)

Harlequin (large, mainstream, many imprints and “flavors”)

Juno Books (small, mainstream with focus on strong female characters - publishes mainly fantasy - not really romance, though can have romantic elements - their books look really interesting.)

Kensington (large mainstream publisher of most genres of romance)

Medallion Press (small mainstream - current openings many genres)

Mundania Press (small mainstream publisher - closed for submission until later this year - but check back)

Penguin-DAW (large mainstream publisher - this particular imprint of Penguin publishes fantasy and sci-fi, also with romance - you can check their ROC imprint as well for guidelines.)

Phaze (e-publisher of erotica/romance - been around a while)

Quanum Kiss (e-publisher of short romances - pays flat $10 for each accepted submission)

Quill Pen (online pulp fiction magazine)

Red Sage (mainstream publisher - paperback erotic romance)

Samhain Publishing (mainly e-pub, but also some paperback, most genres with a lot of focus on erotic - currently only open to special themes so check their website for details. I have friends published with them, I’ve had exchanges with them also, and they seem very nice.)

Sourcebooks (small mainstream publisher, currently open to most genres of romance; also publishes non-fiction)

Stardust Press (new e-publisher - publishes most genres, though currently seems focused on erotic romance)

Tiger Publication (small, new mainstream publisher, but seem responsive & with big plans)

Tor-Forge (large mainstream publisher of sci-fi, fantasy and paranormal romance)

Triskelion (mainly e-pub, but also some paperback, most genres with a lot of focus on erotic romance - also currently actively looking for horror, fantasy and graphic novels)

Twighlight Fantasies (new e-pub of erotic romance)

Whispers (new e-publisher of erotic romance)

Whiskey Creek Press (e-publisher of mainly erotic romance)

Monday, May 7, 2007

First Line Assignment

I took Lucas's first line challenge. The results are posted on my Sterling Sternberg Assignments blog if you want to see it. (I think I'm going to have to rename that blog to Sterberg/Lucas assignments...)

Friday, May 4, 2007

And then there are those reviews...

...that make you smile.

This one from EuroReviews who gave it 5 "rings":

(By the way, the reviewer is German, so the English is slightly off)

"UNMASKED by Kate Sterling is the story of Morgan who is on a mission to find her old flame, Derek, that she left some years back when she was in fear of becoming too close to Derek. Since then, Derek had found another, who has become his wife. Morgan's wish was to be with Derek, just one more time, and for her wish to be fulfilled, she must find Derek at the Masquerade Ball before midnight. Morgan finds Brianna who is trying to find her husband Marcos to save her marriage. Helping each other without knowing who each are, the triangle of these three become an intense, sensual and loving romance story that ends with a surprising ending. The scenes within this story is sizzling! The reader will become emotionally attached to them all, wanting them all to have their love everlasting."

She had nice things to say about everyone and said she wished she could give MASQUERADE 3 higher than 5, but that's as high as they go. As soon as I have a direct link to the site, I'll include it.

Steve, I thought of you saying the German reviews of your comic were better than the English. I guess they must like us. *grin*