Many know that I’m editing Good Girl, but few know I’m completely rewriting it for publication into paper. The rewrite has been an eye-opener into my growth as a writer. I could go into great detail over the changes I’m making, the scenes added or subtracted, the abundance of words deleted, and the total restructuring of, not only the novel, but, the series as a whole. I’m not going to bore my readers(new & my faithful followers from the beginning) with over-explanation since it starts to sound like bragging or like I’m putting down my own work. I’m nothing if not humble… because this rewrite is a humbling experience to say the least. But I take great comfort in seeing my growth over the past sixteen months since I began writing Good Girl.
I’ve said time and time again that I was releasing Widow by such and such a date, only to go back on my word. Subconsciously I was stalling because something felt off… and then I knew. I knew what I needed to change for the betterment.
When I announced my rewrite in the M&M of Restraint group on Facebook, I was asked why I’d change a novel that was currently published. My answer was that as I grow as a writer, I want my books to evolve with me, and it would be disrespectful to the story and the readers to leave it… as less than it could be. But the reality of it is, Good Girl is the foundation of a 7 book series. If a foundation is weak, the entire series could crumble. I don’t work as hard as I do; I don’t create these characters, their worlds, and breathe life into them only to fail.
A story starts with a single thought and is fostered over thousands upon thousands of hours… and that’s not when you’re writing. Willow and company have been in my mind since their conception, over sixteen months ago.
Every. Single. Day.
As a constant reminder of failure, I retain a few glaringly detrimental plot devices from the M&M of Restraint series. I’m currently writing book 12 in that series, and I’d love. LOVE. to fix some things that are set in stone. My only recourse was to slowly arc the story in the correct direction… lesson learned, I’m not doing that to the Blended series. I’m fixing it in the beginning before I make more work for myself in a later installment.
I will announce that the Playroom series is now the Blended series, because the premise revolves entirely around a blended family, not the roving environment of Augustus Kline’s creation. I also changed the genre from Erotica to Contemporary Romance and Erotic Romance, also because the focus is not on the lifestyle. M&M is hardcore, dark and twisted, mysterious and suspenseful, with a hefty dose of kink. That is not what I want from the Blended series.
My thoughts: if I wanted my two series to be identical, I’d just write more books in a particular series. In the beginning, before I knew better, I’d read reviews. A handful of reviews stated Good Girl wasn’t like the M&M series, and this was in a negative tone. No, Good Girl is not like the M&M series… because it’s NOT the M&M series. It’s the Blended series and they are nothing alike.
I needed completely opposite ends of the spectrum from my series. M&M is the scandalous tales of the rich and twisted. Blended is the real life issues of a blended family struggling to survive in mainstream America, while they endure the stresses of combining a two large families while one of their own battles drug and alcohol addiction. Blended is regular folks… and I’m okay with that. Sometimes you need to experience heartbreak and triumph from a source outside of your personal life so you can deal when real shit hits the fan- a story to draw strength from.
Each and every one of these characters is connected through blood or blended through marriage. The ties that bind have absolutely nothing to do with the roving playroom and everything to do with the blending of a family; hence my decision to change the series title. Their ages range from fourteen to forty and, with the exception of Good Girl, every book is an HEA book; hence the need to change the genre to Contemporary Romance.
The Blended series begins with Willow Prynne’s journey from a disillusioned teenager to a mature young woman. Good Girl has a brand-spanking new synopsis:
There aren’t many options for a girl who falls in the middle. I wasn’t an athlete or a geek. I wasn’t an artist or a musician. I didn’t shake my pom-poms along with my ass. I was just a good girl who got good grades and kept her mouth shut. I didn’t date my high school sweetheart and promptly get married the second I was handed my diploma. I’m not shiny enough to attract notice, nor dark enough to be a problem.
I don’t have a tragic sob story. My daddy didn’t leave us destitute and I’m not a victim of a bad neighborhood. I am a middle-America, middle of the road, middle class girl with both parents fussing over their youngest daughter, who has no aspirations or goals. I’ve had every opportunity to succeed- supportive parents, stability, and a strong upbringing. I’m wayward and everyone looks at me like I’m an alien.
My philosophy: how should I know what I want to do with the rest of my life the day I graduate? How am I supposed to know the second I turn eighteen what I am destined to become? One moment you are a disillusioned seventeen-year-old with the world at your fingertips, and the next, congratulations, you’re eighteen and you’re on your own.
With all the changes, I hope that the series appeals to the mainstream and deviants alike. The Blended series rides the edge of both categories and I believe it will be mind-opening for the former group and entertaining for the latter.
While writing Widow, I found many stumbling blocks. One was an event that was hard to swallow. The Widower sickened the Widow when she found out what transpired, creating a major point of contention within their budding marriage. From a parental standpoint: it was beyond disturbing. From a teenaged idiot standpoint: it was fun and exciting, thrilling, and equally fucking stupid… just like a real teenager would behave.
While I didn’t regret the scene, (it wasn’t one of those plot devices I wished out of existence), it was difficult to write and read. I didn’t want it to be sexy even though it’s perceived in that light. I wrote it in a impersonal, clinical manner with little to no description, and it barely took the length of one page. This scenes was the catalyst for every mistake thereafter… and responsible for the majority of Willow’s growth.
Willow’s future view on this moment in time vastly differs from how she felt in the moment. I added a caveat to appease my reservations. For the first time ever, I added a passage written in the future tense about the present tense, and I hope I accomplished my goal. For those of you who read Good Girl in any of its editions, you’ll know where this occurs in the timeline. .. and if you can’t place it, then that shows you just how much I’ve altered Good Girl.
There are moments in your life that you can never get back- the tipping point. These are the moments you simultaneously wish you could change yet keep forever the same. A time when your older self wants to transport back in time and scream STOP at your younger self, and perhaps slap the stupid out of you while you visit. You tell yourself pretty lies to cover the agony of betrayal. At some point, your future self accepts reality as it is and no longer believes the lie. But in present time, the only thing that saves you from life’s bitter truths is the lie you weave for yourself- the altered perception of reality that blinds you to the mistake you’re making. It’s a knife’s edge that can either be wielded to protect you or cut you, and either way it alters the core of who you are, who you were meant to be, and who you become.
This is the first of those moments for me- the first of many.
Days, weeks, years from now, I’ll wish I had analyzed what was happening and put an end to it. I won’t regret, because tonight’s actions, and those after, lead me on a path of enlightenment- a path I earned through mistakes. I’ll forever rue my teenage ignorance in trusting when I shouldn’t. As it is now, my mind is spinning, unable to light on one thought, let alone the dozens flitting around in a stew of confusion and unbridled lust.
The Blended series revolves around the following main characters, each of whom will get a voice within the series:
*titles listed in series order and subject to change, with all books after Good Girl sharing narration*
*shared narration does not equate romantic entanglements*
Good Girl:Willow Prynne.
Widow: Clover Webster & Malcolm Mason.
Wayward: Robin Prynne, Isis Mason, & Augustus Kline.
Waver: Willow Prynne, Devon Mason, & Kieren Mason.
Warped: Essie Prynne & TBA.
Wicked: Violet Webster & Raven Mason.
Wanted: Seth Webster & Weston Mason.
… and yes, I was tempted to either change Good Girl to Willow or Wanton to follow suit with the rest of the titles. But as the foundation of the Blended series, I wanted Good Girl to stick out, just as its single narration and lack of an HEA. Good Girl was merely an introduction to a vast cast of characters that longed to tell you their stories.
After more than a month of debate, both within my mind and with my betas, I threw the to-be-released series order out the window and went with my muse- for several reasons that I don’t wish to delve into. I’d originally stated that Silenced would follow The Hunter with Integrated to follow Silenced. The muse demanded I create Integrated within minutes of The Hunter making its visit to my betas. By the time The Hunter was returned for its final edits, I’d almost completed Integrated. While Integrated was making its beta run, I immediately started Hero.
As confusing as it is for readers, it was far worse for my poor mind. While writing Hero I encountered a new problem, one that I was scared to voice since I’d released titles, series order, and tentative release dates for several novels. A book formed, a book that was connected to Hero.
I awoke a week ago and said the hell with it all- I’m going with my gut.
Notice: Any timeline or deadline I’d previously released is null and void.
I’m writing one book at a time- soldiering through by my muse alone. I apologize for any confusion this may have caused you readers, but I must do this correctly the first time because there are no do-overs in publishing. Once released, it is what it is.
so this is the plan that I’m willing to voice. Definites are firm, meaning they are not subject to change. Probables are flexible, meaning they will be written but not in any specific order- they are on a ‘I’ll tell you when I figure it out basis‘.
Integrated, M&M #11 (Ezra Zeitler)
Hero, M&M #12 (Caleb Green)
Empowered, M&M #13 (TBA after Integrated’s release)
Prince (Niel Whittenhower)
Silenced (Grant Whittenhower)
Master (Marcus Zeitler)
Monster (Ava Zeitler)
Outlines created for untitled works in progress:
Dalton Fontaine Marconi (Yes, our beloved Emo is voicing another installment now that he’s grown into a man)
Julian ‘Julio’ Ramirez
What does this mean for the Playroom series? I’d planned on completing this story arc up until Master, and then writing the series in its entirety before delving into the chaotic journey of the Master of the Universe. Unless the muse goes batshit crazy again, Widow will be released after Empowered. Wayward may or may not be written immediately. It depends on the direction of the flow of the story. It is my hope that I will write the series, every other book until I reach Master, and then it will be a project beyond all projects to create Master.
I apologize for any and all confusion, and I hope to have Integrated released for a special Halloween trick-or-treat to fans.
I updated the coming soon tab on this website. I thought I should expand on what I’m up to.
The books are listed in the order I am writing them, not the order of release. I write out of order and 3 to 4 books at a time. I will list the release order at the bottom of this posting.
The Hunter is in the final stages, and I should be pressing publish on Sunday Nite. It will be in Amazon & B&N’s hands after that. I am pushing for an August 20th release. The Hunter is the 100,000 word first part of a two part story that ends in the Grand Ballroom at Whittenhower Estates. The cover reveal, blurb, and the first three chapters are available on this website.
I am currently writing Integrated, Ezra’s story. I guesstimate that it will be around 100,000 word as well. Maybe slightly shorter. It is the second half of The Hunter, but it is not to be read immediately after. A generous release date of early October. I believe it will be earlier than that, but that depends on other factors. No more than two months will pass between the release of The Hunter-Silenced-Integrated.
Note: The Hunter & Integrated are not a twisted ride of WTF! It’s an emotional journey. The Hunter is written half in the past and half in the weeks before the explosive Christmas Meeting. Integrated is a push into the future, starting with the meeting. Combined they are the resolution for Ezra and Cortez- they’ve earned it since I’ve toyed with these two characters for 12 books. Warning: do not expect the usual. I’m just saying this because I don’t want emails and reviews and comments wanting to know where the kink is or the game playing. These books are about the characters and absolutely nothing else.
Widow: is currently 87,000 words (expected length 120-140k), read thru 4 times, and has the last of the scenes heavily outlined. M&M kept dominating my time from this story. Some if it is because I’m on the fence over a part of the storyline- omit it or evolve it- does it lend to the story or just twist it. This is the nexus novel of the series. It’s the ties that bind the next 5 books. This is pure romance. You start the book knowing how the end of the book will play out. Completely different from anything I’ve written before. But it’s necessary to glue the rest of the books together. That storyline thread is a twisted one. I fear my fans will find my detour boring if I don’t kink it up. But that isn’t what this series is about. This is real life versus M&M’s twisted insanity. I’m marinating on this while I finish Integrated and as I reread Widow from the beginning… again.
Silenced. Grant Whittenhower’s novella. It’s about his naughty exploits within the game to get a woman’s attentions. This book is a palate cleanser between The Hunter and Integrated. The blurb is currently available on this website. I will NOT be posting the first chapter of this novella- it would spoil way too much from the past books as well as the entire premise of the novella.
Prince: Niel’s book is time sensitive. It’s no secret that he has a big secret about to enter the world in less than 5 months. Niel will be the first of Generation Next to have a novel. He will be sharing it with one other character. I am debating on going against the series’ norm and writing it as a dual perspective with the mother-to-be. I won’t know until I get there.
Hero: Caleb Green, our war hero comes home to a life he hasn’t led since his eighteenth birthday. Haunted by the past, he sees something within a woman that intrigues him- pain and the eyes of a survivor, a fighter- when he looks at her he sees a mirror into himself.
Master: Marcus Zeitler, the fallen Master of the Universe. This will be a 20 year epic journey that will take me a very long time to outline, write in a piece meal fashion, and I will have to go back to the series as a whole to make sure that every detail is accurate.
After Hero’s completion, I am investing my sole focus on Master & the Playroom series. Master will be that difficult to write. Faithless took a lot out of me, and I believe this will be far worse. I will write scenes of Master while completing the Playroom series.
The Playroom series isn’t infinite as M&M is… 7 books are outlined, and only 7 books will be written. The main cast are the only ones who have a voice, with each book having 2-3 narrators.
After Master, it isn’t the end of the M&M series. I am offering resolution to the well-loved and most known characters to open up the ability to expand on the members of Generation Next (the kids) and the side characters. They are clamoring to tell their stories.
I have several projects outlined that I cannot get to since I will not write more than 2 series at once. Completing the Playroom will allow me to explore other avenues.
Very Tentative release dates:
The Hunter: August 20th
Silenced: Late September/early October
Integrated: Early October
Master: Late 2014/Early 2015
(working titles) (Narrators do not denote couples)
Wayward (Augustus, Isis, Robin)
Waver (Willow, Kieren, Devon)
Warped (?,?) <- narrators would ruin the surprise.
Wicked (Raven, Violet)
Wanted (Seth, Weston)
My brain is bleeding… seriously, that’s how it feels sometimes. But I wouldn’t change it for anything. Happy Wicked Reading, and thank you to all that interact with me on a daily basis, share my books with friends, and just make me laugh!
I’m off to enter the mind of madness known as Dr. Lunatic!
Warning: This posting will be a mishmash of a billion little bits of information… and extremely long-winded. I’ll put headers so that you may skip potions you don’t give a damn about. *wink wink* I’m riding through Ohio, destination New York (Groceries, fruit & vegetables :P) & Pennsylvania (Home) So I have a few hours of heading eastbound while glaring into the rising sun to formulate a long blog posting. Oh, and rocking out to my father’s love of Creedence Clearwater Revival, but thank goodness he’s no longer listening to his favorites on Sirius radio. I was about ready to jump from the moving car during Fox News & that eighties rock station. The wickedly bright, and always in my eyes no matter how hard I try to avoid it, sun and I are about to have words. I lost a screw in my glasses & I’m missing my transitions lenses something fierce. DANG, this freakin’ sucks!
Edited Versions of my titles
I’ve been contacted a few times in the past few hours on how to tell which version is which and if it is necessary to reread or what the changes were. Restraint, Good Girl, and Unleashed were edited and uploaded the first week of July. On the title page of these editions it will say their date of publication and their revised editions of November 2012/July 2013 (Restraint & Unleashed) & July 2013 (Good Girl) If you do not have these editions, please go to my account on Amazon, manage Kindle devices, and click to ‘turn on’ automatic updates. The newest edition should upload the next time you sync your device. Or follow the steps above until manage Kindle devices, on the library click the drop down next to the title you wish to update, and click update. You can also access this from the purchase page on Amazon (website only) you may also remove the title from device or archive, and redownload the edition. If all else fails, and it has for a select handful of ppl, please contact Amazon via telephone, and have them ‘reset’ your copy to the newest version. Most copies update, but it is out of my control and totally in Amazon’s hands. I don’t know why some update while others don’t.
The changes per title:
Restraint was lengthened from 70k to 100k. Restraint went through a lot of sentence restructure, formatting, and proofreading. I’ve grown within my craft & I want to make my work the best it can be. Restraint was polished, the scenes were expanded with description, and the storyline was fixed for issues in flow and storyline conflict. The overall premise did not change. If you think you need to reread for other than the enjoyment of beginning the series anew, no fear, there is no need. I realize that a lot of readers hate rereading, while some are like me, finding comfort in a reread. I will not change the storyline of my works unless there is a major conflict that I didn’t anticipate.
Unleashed & Good Girl were slightly lengthened by a few thousand words. I didn’t find as many errors, conflicts, or need to restructure the sentences. They basically received a thorough going over and polish.
As I write new titles, I will be going back to past titles, Dexter is next on my list… and yes, I will be going back to the beginning with Restraint & Good Girl when I finish all of my titles. I foresee me doing this until I find the titles flawless. (which is an impossibility) This also help to refresh the little things in my mind as I write new books within these series. Good Girl was a refresher for Widow, & Dexter will be a refresher before I begin The Hunter, and so on.
Thoughts on reviews:
I thank those who have taken the time to review my works, albeit positive or negative. Either way, obviously my work struck a chord within the reader enough for them to think about the story and take time from their busy lives to write a few sentences or a long review. So thank you.
I do not read reviews on principle. Any review, good or bad, is an emotional drain for me. While positive may fill me with inspiration, negative will undoubtedly demotivate my ass… and I never know if it’s positive or negative. Even a positive 5 star review can be riddled with unintentional landmines.
It’s a vicious cycle to engage in, an addiction. “This person loves me. “This person loathes me.” “OMG, I fucked that up!” By the time I read two or three reviews, I’m hunting up a razor blade (I jest. I’m not a cutter, but you get the point… and in all seriousness, I’ve thought about it before. But through the force of my massive willpower, I’ve abstained)
I have to take a step back from all of the closet backseat drivers (editors) and the people who think they can write my stories better than I can. Word of advice, you can’t. Why do I have the arrogance to say you can’t write my story better than I can? Simple, because it’s MY STORY, and I am the creator of its universe. As far as my grammar Nazis… I’ve grown a lot, and I will continue to grow within all the facets of my craft. Making fun of me when you make similar mistakes in the bashing review is kind of… interesting.
Final words: I am a human being. Just because I put my work out for public consumption does not mean you have the liberty to speak to me in any manner you wish. You do realize what I write, correct? I abhor DISRESPECT! Writer and authors alike are regular people with regular lives. We are all walking in similar directions down different paths. While I love interacting with my readers (I truly do) it is unnerving when some make demands (write it like this, you should have done this differently…) everything within my work is up to my discretion because it’s MY work. I thank you for the input. But no, I will not change who I am to meet whatever expectations you have of me. & yes, this is coming from a location of stress that I feel every time I receive this type of message or email. It’s completely inconceivable why people believe I will kotow to them for any reason, no matter how big or small.
In retrospect, the people in the digital land of the internet are just people, strangers. I liken the criticism and demands to a complete stranger walking up to me on a crowded street and making demands of me. Who wouldn’t be pissed? I have no idea who you are, as you have no idea of who I am. That’s not entirely true. I am an open book: my real name, age, location, and my words bleed upon the page. My point is that until you and I have multiple interactions over a long spans of time, like any relationship, you have no rights to me until you’ve earned it. I’m a very guarded person, I even take great offence when my nearest and dearest place pressure on me. Quickest way to clam me up, make a demand of me.
Note to everyone: It could be anyone on the other side of that user name with a stolen pic as a profile picture. Unless you are a public figure, you have no idea who is on the other side of the computer screen. So yes, the negatives wound me, but then I realize it could be anyone. This isn’t coming from a position of arrogance. Why should I heed words from someone who doesn’t know me, and may be ten years old giving me writing, editing, plotting, and storyline advice? I do not go to your place of employment or your home and follow you around telling you how to do this or that on a subject I know jack-shit about, so don’t come into my home and office through my laptop screen giving me advice about my occupation that you may or may not have any experience with. As bitchy as that last statement is, it’s all about mutual respect.
I will take all advice with a grain of salt, even from my betas and fellow writers. Because, ultimately, I am the one who has to live with my work. After all, it has my real name attached to it, not yours.
Really, think on this… Catfish was not a fictitious story!!! Scary, that!
I love hearing from readers, whether good or bad (not the readers 😉 The comments) Please be respectful, though. I don’t need you walking on eggshell or any shit like that. My self-confidence isn’t make of spun glass, but I am prone to bouts of extreme frustration. I have the ability to look in my mirror and acknowledge my faults. So you can’t say anything to me that I didn’t already know. With this said, go ahead and write me in any media you wish (email, msg, and comments on the website or Facebook pages. Friend my ass, and I’ll accept. Hell, you can write me letters if you wish)
I’ve had a lot of positive interactions with readers, and it’s been a cause of inspiration. M&M of Restraint is Dark and contains very dark themes. I’ve had a lot of abuse survivors contact me, saying I’ve helped them come to terms with their violation. You have no idea how this makes me feel. I want my readers to feel empowered by my work. While I may not write traditional HEA, my characters always end up with a feeling of completion within themselves. Do not give power to your victimizer by dwelling in the past. You are stronger than that!
Within the Playroom series, I dive into substance addiction, and it will be a thread within the series. It is something that has directly affected my life in several way, and I wish to address it. I’ve had a few readers contact me in thanks over writing about something that is usually pushed underneath the rug or dramatized as being fun and carefree. I’m a firm believer in tough love and totally against enabling the abuser. I hope this helps to push readers to change aspects of their lives that aren’t fulfilling them, negative people within their lives included.
Current works in progress:
Widow: a dual narrated storyline between the Widow & the Widower. Clover Webster and Malcolm Mason alternate chapters. Odd chapters for the Widower, & even chapters for the Widow. I’ve read a lot of multiple POV books, and it always confused me when the point of view would shift within a chapter with no real indication, and sometime within the same paragraph. I’ve had to read several paragraphs to gauge who the hell was narrating. Believe it or not, big time authors make this mistake within their books, especially those who have more than 2 narrators. My all-time favorite author is a HUGE offender. She also uses an upwards of 19 narrators (I think that was the final tally on her last published work) within this chaotic mess.
Using my idols are a model on what not to do, I decided that I would ease the transition by giving each narrator their own chapter with headings, so you never need to determine who is speaking/thinking because I told you before you began. Since this is my first foray into the land of multiple POV, I decided to simplify it with only 2 narrators.
Widow is a HEA storyline. One of the strongest romances I’ve written. While not saccharine in the least, with some very strong dark themes, it is pure romance. The Playroom series is my venture to get away from the darkness of The M&M series. There are no billionaires, fanatical storylines, or outlandish lifestyles. The Playroom is real people who have very real issues and kinks. They suffer through daily struggles with rent/mortgages, occupations, families, and children.
Good Girl was the introduction to the cast of characters. I needed it to highlight the playful naïveté of a teenager. It did not end with a cliffhanger or any real resolution because Willow Prynne is a still a child in my eyes. Willow has to grow up before she gets the life she deserves. Willow’s resolution will be within the pages of book 4 of the series. But you will continue to see Willow grow throughout book 2 and 3.
Widow was the perfect nexus for the series. The union of Malcolm and Clover gives us a glimpse of the cast of characters. Yes, I just said the union. There is no secret that they are going to hook up. In the format of romance, the format that I usually hate, mind you, you know from page one how the book will end. It’s why I’m not a fan of romance. I like a mystery. I don’t like knowing that the main protagonists are destined to be together no matter what. But in Widow’s case, it needed to be written as romance. It’s the progression of the characters as they solidify their family that sets up the rest of the series.
Widow is a sensual book. It shows the softer, gentler side of BDSM. In Good Girl, I broke down the barriers of BDSM by showing the playfulness of the lifestyle. I want readers to realize the lifestyle is NOT about abuse, force, or pain. There should always be a choice based on trust. Recently fiction has portrayed the lifestyle with an abusive filter, desensitizing readers to what is really right or wrong. Abuse is not sexy, it’s abuse, and it’s illegal. A personal violation is not romantic, no matter what light you shine on it. It’s assault. You should never allow someone to infringe upon your rights as a human being. I cannot stress this strongly enough!
Yes, I’ve written force and non-consent, but I’ve made sure you see the after-effects of such an event. I’ve shown these events to empower the victim when they survive because life is not pretty. Force is not romance, and it’s not sexy or hot. It may be some people’s kink. But there is a fine line between it being a mutual choice and assault. It’s a choice, both parties always have a choice. Don’t fall into a trap by allowing yourself to see it through a tainted filter. *lecture complete*
Back to Widow… our Widower, Malcolm Mason is the ultimate alpha male who wants to take care of his family. He isn’t abusive because he struggles with his own past. He suffers from skin hunger, and readers will experience the softer, sensual side of the lifestyle through Malcolm.
Widow sets up Wayward. Wayward will be narrated by Augustus Kline, Robin Prynne, and Isis Mason. I want to stress that the narrators do not indicate unions. While the three lifelong friends may find HEA together, you’ll have to read to find out. I’ve grouped my narrators by age and connection. Similar to book 4 with Willow Prynne and Kieren and Devon Mason. It would be disjointed to have narrators of differing ages. To read as a teen/young adult, and then be thrust in the mind of an adult would be discombobulating, especially for me as I write it.
Widow is slated for release on the final week of August. It may be sooner rather than later. Only the muse knows. Currently the book is 75k words in length, and about 3/4th completed. I have no true length on my books. I end them when the story deems it should be ended. However, I do price my books according to length.
I’ve never written a work under 50k, but if I do, here is the pricing guide I always follow.
10-25,000 words: 99 cents
26-40,000 words: $1.99
41-60,000 words: $2.99
61-100,000 words: $3.99
All first in a series will be listed at $3.99, regardless of length. (If shorter than 100k, will be priced less. It’s why Restraint was just raised to $3.99 from its original $2.99. The revision pushed it over 100k) First in a series are also subject to .99 cent sales and free promotions.
101,000+ words: $4.99
Over 150,000 words: $5.99
Omnibus editions & epic length novels over 300,000 words: $9.99.
Only paper editions will ever be over $9.99. Yes, I do plan on paper editions in the near future.
These prices are well under the guidelines that major publishers and independent and self-published authors use. I will never rip off my readers. I know more than anyone how horrible the economy is currently. I’d rather have my loyal fans read my books for next to nothing than go without. My code is to give the reader a lot of content and story for as little price as possible. But a girl has to eat… even if she’s on a diet.
First person present tense:
If you haven’t figured out yet, I’m just writing whatever pops into my mind as it pops into my mind. (Dude, both times I typed pops, POOPS flowed from my fingertips! *snickers) Currently, I see the sign promising Erie Pennsylvania in 40 miles, and my bladder is about to freakin’ burst. Dang you, Venti Caramel Iced Coffee from the Ohio Toll road Starbucks that litter the plazas… But alas, we’ve run out of plazas since we’ve abandoned that road for Ohio’s I-90, which seems very short on rest areas. GONNA PISS MY PANTS! A coffee piss is worse than a beer piss.
So anyhoo… case in point about first person present tense (dude, Fox news just took over CCR L) I write in this tense because it causes the reader to experience the story as it’s happening, like my current pissy pants issue. You’re reading about my predicament as I experience the bulging pressure of a full to bursting bladder.
I can’t write in past tense. I just can’t do it. I hate it when I do a flashback sequence. I also can’t write a 3rd person perspective, either. It also takes me a long time to get into a book that is written that way. I think in the here and now. So the entire time I’m reading about the “saids” and “dids” I’m like, but your dialogue is in present tense. WTF? Yeah, it confuses me and pulls me from the story. I know the norm is past tense. But… yeah, my story, my freakin’ rules! Yes, I’m a dominant personality. You should know this by now.
Plus, that third person makes me feel like a patient at an insane asylum when it’s not written properly. I’m not Ezra Zeitler of the multiple personality persuasion. Like, I’m talking about myself in third person or some shit. You don’t think, ‘she walked into the room,’ when thinking about your own actions. I’m like, “bitch, I sashayed into the room, and everyone was looking at me.”
In case you are wondering… yeah, reviews from first person perspective haters led me to this strange train of thought. *shrugs* You ain’t making me write any differently than I already do. I’ll perfect my craft, but I’m not catering to everyone’s likes. It’s an impossibility. Plus, I really do love reading first person present, so that’s what I write.
WELCOME TO PENNSYLVIANIA. My home state better cough up a freakin bathroom before I wet this leather seat with my coffee piss! OMG! A Rest Area! Thank you baby Jesus! I love you Pennsylvania for the short while before we dip back into New York, my other ridge-running state.
AH! I feel five pounds lighter! Pure bliss! & you wouldn’t enjoy my discomfort and subsequent relief if it wasn’t for the first person present tense writing J
My muse has a mind of her own. After Widow, I may or may not write The Hunter or Wayward. Sometimes as I’m writing a series and I finish one book, the next manifests immediately. Other times I’m able to go between the series with little issue. It’s why I only write 2 series at a time. Any more than that and I would go insane.
I can give you some info on The Hunter, though. I will do my damnedest to get The Hunter released before Thanksgiving. I have some events, sales and such for that time frame, and again at Christmas/New Years because of all the new devices being purchased as gifts. Yeah, it’s a long ways off, but I have to keep a schedule. I want Widow, Wayward, and The Hunter published before then. And it all depends on length. Like with Faithless, which I thought would be a short book. I never know what the book’s length will be until it tells me… so it all depends. We will see!
The Hunter: Cortez Abernathy is experiencing writer’s block, as you learned in several books and the why of it during chapter 105 of Faithless. I want to get away from a parallel storyline, flashback, dream sequences… but I want to give Cort’s perspective of past events without rehashing them to death. Cort’s story is the time frame of after they moved to Misery Castle (KING- ending chapters of Faithless) The reader will be in the present as Cort and company deal with events, but will experience the past through Cort’s newest book, The Hunter. The Hunter is an autobiographical Cortez Abernathy memoir.
Cortez’s book will be more romancy, emotional, and life-changing. It’s not a coming of age story, more of a finding one’s true path kind of story. Cortez is lost. I’ve been strongly toying with an idea, and I’m on the fence. After Widow, for the first time ever, I’m seeking the advice from my betas. What I may or may not do is irreversible, and I don’t want to fuck up my series by acting in haste. No, I’m not offing any major characters (I promise). But it will have far reaching consequences, and I do believe I’m going to do it. Sometimes I amaze myself. *snickers* Yes, you should be very worried!
Warning aside, The Hunter will be very sweet, very emotional, and as gut-wrenching as it is playful and charming. Basically, Cort’s book will be just like his personality!
Silenced: I believe will be a short book, and not because Grant doesn’t have a lot to say… it’s just that his book ties into a more complex book. But I felt it was the right time to set up what Grant has going on. His swagger and naughtiness will be a good palate cleanser between Cortez and Ezra’s emotional torture roller coaster ride from Hell. Grant has some ‘play’ he’s working on to get attention from an unlikely source. Wil kept hinting at this during Faithless. “One step closer, congrats!” kind of dialogue. Plus, Grant is mighty pissed his bedroom romp with Faith was interrupted.
Next up is Integrated (Ezra Holden Zeitler’s book). After that, it’s either Niel or Katya’s book. Yeah, that gives you a hint about what I’m toying with…
What I have planned for this evening: I have a few winners to choose for the rafflecopter giveaway. I also have to send out copies of my books to a prize winner from another giveaway I was a part of. I’m doing laundry out the ass! I have to create a report for the sales for the promo weekend, and I think I will post the first two chapters of Widow (a chapter from both narrators)…
As usual, after a Kindle free promotion weekend: It wasn’t good enough that I gave out thousands of FREE books, ppl must read the rest of the books for FREE as well. Unleashed had a return this morning, now there is a return for Dexter, and I’m positive there will be one for Dalton next… and so on. Now I just checked, and there are two Unleashed returns. Man, it’s amazing how people accidently one-click my books in series order, and manage to return them after reading…. Amazing… absolutely amazing…
Today has been a busy day. I created a giveaway for Wicked Reads reaching a goal of 2000 fans. Scroll down a post and enter as of Midnight. I tweaked, fixed some formatting issues, and reworded the epilogue of KING. Those who already have a copy, it’s worded slightly different, but still the same, story-wise. KING has been uploaded to B&N and Amazon. Within the next 12-48 hours it will be available for purchase. I’ll give a shout out when it’s live, and update the purchase links in the M&M of Restraint tab. I’ve also rearranged some things on this website, updated info and such. Lastly, updated Goodreads.
Now to the meat of this blog posting. What’s Erica up to lately.
I’ve been on the fence over quite a few things- disquiet- twitchy. KING was completed weeks ago. I had fixed the beta edits and reread the thing 7 times over. But I still didn’t publish. I wanted to do a scene that was needed, but not from Daniel’s POV. I decided on a epilogue. Here is one of my biggest issues. Faithless was going to be an info-dump book. For those of you who don’t know what that means, you’re inundated with a shit-load of info. I hate that. So KING’s epilogue is a two-for-one. Ezra narrates the epilogue and he dumps a ton of information that will help while reading the future books. In fact, I let so much info out that it is confusing. But who better to confuse you then our insane Dr. Lunatic? I think I will include this epilogue in the future books it impacts. Part two of the two-for-one epilogue, who doesn’t want to see Ez get his groove on? Hmm… he was so lonely, too. 😉
Warning: KING’s sex scenes are 90% gay, with only 1 straight scene and 1 bi scene. But if you didn’t know Daniel Whittenhower II was gay by now…. & frankly, I hope I broaden your horizons. Love is love, sex is sex, it shouldn’t matter who you’re with.
Back to my disquiet twitchiness… Something was just off. Widow is calling to me. “Hey, we’re over here. Click us and write!” I’m not feeling particularly romancy right now. Faithless was screaming, “Deadline! Deadline! Deadline.” & I was muttering to myself, “I don’t want to write you right now, stfu! Cort and I need to mind-meld for awhile.” I mean, who the hell wouldn’t want to converse with Cort?
My issue, King isn’t a new beginning, just a turning point. Queen’s books and Dalton closed out a mindset of the series. Using the word story-arc isn’t correct. King is just an introduction, a buffer between Dalton/Checkmate and Faithless. Just as how the story progressed timeline-wise with Jaded, Queened, Restraint/Unleashed/Dexter/Dalton/Checkmate, King bridges the gap of Faithless/The Hunter/Silence.
I have to write those three books at the same time. None of them can be released before the first draft of the next is completed. The current time, there is only a two-day gap between books, backstory not included. Silence will be as KING is, a change.
I will explain without too much detail.
Faithless: Faith Simpson as a fifteen-year-old thru the present day Syn. We see how her life brought her to the here and now. Her friendship with the Ezes and her entanglement with Wil. Syn’s book ends an hour after KING does. Daniel goes looking for Syn after the last line of chapter thirty-seven of KING. Final Chapter of Faithless, and then KING’s epilogue begins. So yeah… this is a difficult puzzle I’ve created.
The Hunter: Cortez Abernathy. The prologue is of a twelve-year-old Cort running through the woods playing with Ez. Chapter One, he awakes from his memory, a seventeen-year-old young man thrust into a nightmare. We experience that time frame in graphic detail. The King epilogue flows to the ending of The Hunter. Ez has some explaining to do.
Silence: Grant Whittenhower. He wants to tell you why he did the things he’s done. Since he no longer has a voice to call his own, he’s going to write about it. The Epilogue brings hell down on him. I only have a small bit of his book outlined, seeing as it’s books away. But about a third into the story, we progress into the present. Meaning, what happens in the epilogue, the rest of the book is the aftermath.
After that: No clue. Truly toying between Niel and Wil. I can’t say how much life is left in the series. But I can tell you, Marcus or Ezra will be the final book. Whoever isn’t last, comes just before. We have many characters before that. Whether novellas, shorts, or full-length novels. I didn’t create these character for them to fade into the aether without telling their story.
What this means for the Playroom series: It’s on hold until Silence is complete. It could be fall or closer to 2014. I don’t know. I do know that I will not write M&M book 12 until book 4 of the Playroom is published. As I said, Silenced is a turning point for M&M. I don’t know where I want to go from there. However, I do know where I want to go with the Playroom. I don’t foresee more than 6 or so books in this series. No side characters will be written about. I love the story. I just feel that the core group needs its due. This is how I see it. Obviously, I’ve been known to change my mind. *snickers* but in this case, it’s always been a solid vision. This is my HEA series. Good Girl ended as it did because Willow wasn’t ready yet…
*The names next to the title don’t denote a couple. Just narrators.*
Good Girl: Willow
Widow: Malcolm Mason, Clover Webster
Wayward: Isis Mason, Robin Prynne, Augustus Kline
4: Willow Prynne, Devon Mason, Kieren Mason
5: 1 of the Mason boys from book 4 & his sister Raven will share the narration of this book
6: Weston Mason, Seth Webster.
That’s all folks!
The completion of the Playroom will allow me to write anew. Either I will work on the two paranormal/fantasy series I’ve created or think of something fresh and original. I will only ever do 2 projects at a time. I already feel like Ezra most days. I can’t do 3 or 4 series at once.
When will what be done by when?
Guesstimates are highly tentative.
The Hunter: July
Widow: September (75% written already)
Wayward & book 4: December-ish
My 2014 will be new, because I haven’t nary a clue on what I’m going to write. And yes, I get that today is April 1st. I might be creative, but my logical mind needs structure. So I’m all scheduled up for the next 8 months!
Off to ruin a trio of boys and a girl jogging along a wooded path. Told ya, not feeling romantic at the moment!