New Look and TItle for My Blog

I’ve given my website a facelift. I mentioned a few months ago that the messy desk theme wasn’t really me, but it took me a while to get around to making changes. (You know how these things go. 🙂 ) I started by changing the title of my web site from “Christine Amsden” to “Into […]

School’s Out

Summer break doesn’t look quite the same from the point of view of the mom. With my son in kindergarten and my daughter in pre-school, I had half a day, every day, with no interruptions. Ahhhhh…. Now they’re home with me all day. Ahhhhh!!!! Luckily, they’re good kids. And thanks to imposed quiet times, I’m […]

Professional Critiquing Services

As of this month, I have decided to offer professional critiquing services for novelists interested in honest, insightful feedback. As many of you know, I’ve been teaching workshops for the Muse and Savvy Authors for years, but you may not know what I enjoy most about them: I love reading a promising piece of work, […]

A Chocolate Snob’s Easter Shopping

I give up! Really, I have no choice, and should have given up, on principle, years ago, but I fell in love with that smooth milk chocolate and refused to believe the experience was over. Alas, it is, and has been ever since Hershey’s bought Dove. The change in quality was marked and instantaneous, and […]

The Crystal Ball: Interactive Stories?

Picture this: You’re reading a story live on a blog, the character just having posted about her latest predicament, and you have the opportunity (through commenting) to suggest her next move. Maybe there are photographs to help you visualize a murder scene, and you can try to spot something out of place. Or maybe she’s […]

The New Scent of Books

For those of us in love with reading, we have long associated hours of pleasure with the smell of paper. Our sense of smell, being hugely involved in the creation of memories, will lull us into that sense of pleasure from the moment we pick up a paperback, before we’ve even read a word. In […]

The Art of Rereading

I have been caught up in a frenzy of re-reading lately, which I confess is why my book review section has been a little thin. When I looked back over my last few reviews I cringed to see so many negative or lukewarm reviews. It made me feel like a horribly picky or pessimistic person […]

Can I Change My Mind?

Yesterday, I picked up a book I read before. I didn’t realize until partway through that I had read it before, and when I did, I went to goodreads to see what I originally thought. One star. Unfinished. I lambasted the thing. And the thing is, I can’t disagree with anything I said in that […]

Should I Chnage my Blog Theme?

Be honest! I chose the “messy desk” when I was preparing to launch The Immortality Virus because I couldn’t decide if I was a scifi writer or a fantasy writer, but I know my desk is always messy. The real trouble I have with the messy desk theme is the cup of coffee off to […]

So….how ’bout this weather?

Even when weather falls into its perfectly predictable patterns, weather has long-since been a topic of polite, casual conversation. The lines are scripted. There’s nothing new to add. If you do it right, you might move on to a more fulfilling topic, or else you might decide there really isn’t anything interesting to say to […]