Posted in Articles

Weekly Word Count #153

Word Count: 11,100

What story I’m currently working on:

Closing in on the end of Taking Root at 49k. It’s a wild ride, and I’m down to the final chapters, so I’m going to guarantee that I’ll be finished this book by the next update! I love the race to the end once you get to a certain point in a story–it’s like crack for me. Once I finish Taking Root, I’ll be switching over to Hypnotizing Beat in full force, and I started tweaking around with the playlist to get all geared up for it.

What I’m editing/marketing:

The waiting, the waiting, the WAAAAAITING. So, not only am I trying to rehome Philly Coven Chronicles and Tribal Spirits, but we’re also rehoming Cupid’s Cafe. A lot of my books are pulled at the moment and ouch, it hurts. Cross fingers and send positive vibes that I get some good news soon! I finished Colors of a Soul, the title of the fae novella for Legends of the Veil, and then I sent it off to the editor! I’m stoked to have another thing off my plate, and because of that I was able to dive back into Musketeer Pirates! EEEE! Also, not only is Gaslights and Graves out, but now Legends of the Veil is available for pre-order!

Join my brigade:

The best ways to get involved with my work is by joining my ARC List, my Facebook Group, or sign up for my Patreon!

Teaser of the week:

Candace brandished a pint glass at the ready. Ale could soothe most of these ruffians, and she_d become adept at taming tempers.

Line of the week:

“Three?” he leaned forward. “Please don’t tell me you enjoyed the third Terminator movie.”

“First my electronica and now T3?” Danny splayed her hand over her chest in mock horror. “How are we together again?”

Adrian shrugged, popping a piece of General Tso’s into his mouth. “I figured you only wanted me for my body.”

Posted in Articles

Weekly Word Count #137

Word Count: 15,642

What story I’m currently working on:

Well now, I honestly didn’t think I’d be able to keep up that breakneck pace with the Wanderer’s story, but as I’m typing this, I’m closing in on 23k. I’ve very rarely had a story pour out of me this quickly, but apparently it’s been pent up and needing to be told for some time now. This story has been tugging at my heart in all of the best ways too, the lead characters so vivid and vibrant it hurts. Cole is proud, and responsible, and constantly smoothing over the fights between his siblings, the weary sort of soul who carries too much. And Bree is fire and a fight, she’s the crack of a whip, with the sting that lingers.

What I’m editing/marketing: To quote Shrek the Musical: the waiting, the waiting, the waaaaaaaiting! While I’m testing my patience with all this waiting, I’m charging ahead with the writing of the things. I’ll be getting edits in soon as well, so I have plenty to work on. I got the cover for A Reflection of Ice, so that was excitement, and I’m launching into marketing prep for that eventual release as well as Gaslight and Graves.

Teaser of the week:

A Reflection of Ice coming in early 2018!

Line of the week:

Riley snorted, letting out another slow stream of smoke. “Mrs. Wormwood’s voice is currently the soundtrack of my nightmares. Her nasal drone haunts me.”

“Got to remix that shit,” Cole said stubbing the toe of his boot against the gray paver in front of him. “Throw some electronic backbeats behind it, add in cat wails for good measure, and you’ve got a hit on your hands.”

Riley let out a sharp laugh, one of those surprised, real ones. “You’re missing your true calling. ‘World War Mew’ would be a way more entertaining way to spend history class.”

Posted in Articles

Weekly Word Count #88

Word Count: 4, 514

What story I’m working on: Hit 22k with Future King, and I’m starting to get back into it this week. Hopefully I’ll dive into the fun scenes soon! And the shifter story, Forged Alliances, has reached the midway point! Wooo!! It’s rolling full steam ahead (hopefully serious steam, because tharr be sexytime scenes coming up).

What I’m editing/marketing: Just submitted Waking for Winter to my editor for Loose Id, so fingers crossed!!! Also, Rising for Autumn just came out, so if you want Alanna and Sam’s story, it’s now available! With nothing on the table to market though, I took one of my old projects, Iron Legacy, and started polishing it up again. Looks like another rewrite is looming on the horizon!

Line of the week:

“Look at all the shiny swag they’re toting,” she shouted, loud enough for the bastards to hear. “Didn’t know we were heading to some rich prick’s ball. Do you think you went overkill on accessorizing, laddies?” The second those words left her mouth, a graveyard hush swept through the market, followed by a groan from Lance. She shot him a glare and shrugged. “What? If they wanted to challenge us, they should’ve brought more guys.”

 

 

Posted in Articles

Weekly Word Count #84

Word Count: 6,562

What story I’m working on: Hit 17k with Future King–slowing down the pace to focus more on the shifter story which is also closing in on 17k since I have a deadline for that one!

What I’m editing/marketing: Continuing to plug away at Waking for Winter and prepping marketing for Rising for Autumn. I’m beyond excited for the release of book three!!

Line of the week:

Dax stalked into his room to put on something decent. Like it or not, Kanoska had agreed to work with him and he was going to hold her to her promise. Even if they had problems keeping their hands off each other and they happened to be mated for life. No biggie. He tugged on a shirt as he let out a long exhale. Hell—he hadn’t stayed in a relationship longer than six months and in stomped a woman he barely knew with lifetime potential stamped all over that perfect ass.

Posted in Articles

Analyze that Quote: Joseph Conrad

Who’s ready for some learning time? I love dissecting quotes, and the extrovert in me enjoys typing it out, since I’d rather output that ruminate in my head. Probably why I’m a writer, ha.

A writer without interest or sympathy for the foibles of his fellow man is not conceivable as a writer.
– Joseph Conrad

This quote makes me want to stamp my feet, wave a flag and point furiously at it, simply due to how important a point I think it communicates. Joseph Conrad’s words aren’t difficult to process and the message is a straightforward, but important one.

I’ve stated this before, but writing teaches empathy, and many writers happen to be avid readers, and have been for a long time. Empathy is a key component in being a writer, and I believe probably the number one reason I was always interested in writing. I love connecting to people, and examining life through different perspectives than my own. It is so. very. important. as a society that we have this ability. Unfortunately, with decline in readers, and most people buried in their phones, empathy is hard to come by these days.

All the more reason why books are important, right?

Back on topic though, I can’t imagine being a writer if you don’t care about people. People should fascinate you, scintillate you, and inspire you. Whether you’ve seen humanity at its worst, or its best, human beings and their unique problems tend to dominate the mind of a writer. I’ve met plenty of people who can’t empathize. Who don’t care about others. Let me tell you, never in a million years would I want to read anything they write.

After all, how dull and boring would it be to not feel? To not care? To not long for something different, or a better place, or have the suffering of others inspire inside yourself such a mighty rage that burns for a lifetime?

So yes, I do believe this is important advice.

Posted in Articles

Word of the Day: Aggrandize

Word of the Day: Aggrandize

What I think it means: Because of the aggr- reminding me of aggressive, and grand, I’m going to guess it means to overly exaggerate, or blow out of proportions.

What it actually means: to make something appear greater, widen in scope.

I was a bit off on that one, and the funny thing is, if I were called upon to use it in a sentence, I think I would’ve used it correctly since the word was a familiar one. There’s a subtle understanding that makes definitions tougher while usage when writing might come naturally.

Posted in Articles

Analyze that Quote: Willa Cather

When embarking on the writing journey, oftentimes, your best teachers are already published writers. Indirectly, through their stories, their style, and even their words of wisdom regarding writing.

Most of the basic material a writer works with is acquired before the age of fifteen.
– Willa Cather

I love this quote for its complex simplicity. This isn’t suggesting that you won’t deal with traumatic events or situations that shape you later on in life, that will inspire you to write a masterpiece. Obviously, that happens all the time. However, I believe the author’s referring to a more subtle magic–our tics, our neuroses, our fears, and defense mechanisms–the content that plagues us. That stems from childhood.

For example, my own writing–one theme tends to follow me around a LOT, and no matter what other hurdles my life brings, I think this theme tends to work its way into my stories. Loneliness is huge for me, because I was a pretty lonely kid. And a lot of writers I’ve spoken to happen to leave that same subconscious imprint on their works. Things from childhood sneak into our stories even when we’ve overcome them, because they’re cemented in our psyche.

Best thing to do? Tap into it. Figure out what makes *you* tick and embrace it. Not only will inspiration come more easily, but knowing yourself can help make you stronger as a person.

Posted in Random

Writing Outside

Just as with reading outside, writing outside can be wholly enriching. I actually find that when I’m sort of stuck on a section, or I’m having trouble focusing, when I go outside, it’s a lot easier to push out the next section of the story.

I’ve gone out with my laptop before and sat on our picnic table–that’s my ideal, because I can just type out there. But I’ve also gone out with a notebook too and jotted things down, or wrote whole sections while basking in the shade on a sunny day. (My skin is way too pale to do any sun-basking.) It’s a win-win situation–I get outdoors time, but I also get my work done!

17092_10101202506264918_5280132527972116822_n

So today, this is my office!

Posted in Articles, Writing Tip of the Day

Analyze that Quote: Ray Bradbury

Not only can we learn things about the world around us, but we can also learn about ourselves from certain quotes. Since writers work with words for a living, oftentimes their written quotes hold a weight to them and wisdom that we can draw from.

Any man who keeps working is not a failure. He may not be a great writer, but if he applies the old-fashioned virtues of hard, constant labor, he’ll eventually make some kind of career for himself as writer.
– Ray Bradbury

This is a quote that appeals to me personally, because I believe in the results of hard work. What I think this addresses, and in a most brilliant way, is the difference between having a gift and passion. Some people are gifted at art, at music, at writing, or even at science, math, anything. Not that work takes no time, but their genius springs forth even in rudimentary stages, and oftentimes doesn’t require the disciplines it would from most others.

However, same as with any gift, it can be used or squandered. There are many writers who have a gift and potential to be great, but either have other priorities, or don’t care to pursue. Or, don’t have the discipline of one who’s had to work at it for a long time.

On the other hand, anyone can learn a craft, given enough time, work, and passion. Those three factors are of vital importance, because otherwise, it’ll be another abandoned pursuit. The people who achieve their writing success via hard work rather than a natural gift of it though have the tools developed to make a career out of it, because they’ve formed the necessary disciplines. A career requires regularity, not writing when the ‘muse inspires.’ Try that excuse with a boss at your day job and watch you get laughed out of the place.

While that might take some of the romantic whimsy out of writing, I do think it’s a valuable quote for people in the field, because those who are determined and passionate, those who have their goal in mind, will utilize it to further their agenda of continuing to hone their craft and write until they become truly great.

Posted in Articles, Writing Tip of the Day

Analyze that Quote: Ernest Hemingway

Everyone has an opinion on how to write, and those of us who do so tend to place value on our predecessors who have found success. However, one thing I’ve found to be true is that people and their processes are different. So today, we’ll analyze Ernest Hemingway.

It’s none of their business that you have to learn to write. Let them think you were born that way.
– Ernest Hemingway

Most folks have read at least one Hemingway book in their school career. Mine was The Sun Also Rises. So, part of what comes into play when analyzing the writer’s advice is also their background.

This particular quote however, I find to be sound advice, from a practical standpoint. It can be taken in several manners. First and foremost, if your learning is showing in your writing, then obviously it hasn’t been polished enough. Hence the quote cements the importance of honing your craft before pursuing publication, as well as the importance of a damn good editor.

The other manner this quote can be taken has to do with psychology of how people work, and would also fit Hemingway’s cut and dry, practical perspective on things. People aren’t ‘wow’ed by your hardship until you’ve found success. Not to say that you won’t have your support–some are lucky enough to have devout friends and family by their side while they scrape their way up to a reputation. However, the average passersby, the normal reader doesn’t care about that.

In fact, the general populace doesn’t go digging through the filth to find a gem, so in essence, Hemingway’s quote can have quite a different message.

“Let them think you were born that way.”

What better way to create a name, a reputation, a legend, than to play on the public’s ignorance of craftsmanship and present a solid front? You wouldn’t go to a job interview and talk about all your mistakes, would you?

Everyone makes them, and everyone has hurdles, but I think the true gem in this quote is the underlying subtlety of the drive for success. Instead of bemoaning your hardships, you keep working until you present that polished, published front, of the writer you’ve worked so hard to become.