Where has my time disappeared to?

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It seemed only yesterday I was celebrating the release of my second book, ready to crack the whip on my third. Then life happened. It’s a simple tale with not so many simple twists and turns. I get started, I write a few chapters, and then another detour. How many years are we looking at? Google Maps would have a field day with all the road maps I’m certain.  Is any of it an excuse for not writing? No, not really. Am I ashamed that I haven’t finished my work? No way! Do I feel that everything that has gone on has enriched my world view giving me an extra depth I didn’t have before? Heck yeah!

At this very moment I am sitting in the bedroom of a house I used to live in. Nothing big has changed since I moved away. It looks the same, smells the same, and I fall into the same patterns as if I were a small teenager. The small town life never really suited me, not to say I’m all for Urban living. I just knew there was something more than this Tennessee county could offer me in life. Yet here I was staring at the same blue(not blue) walls and taking in the emotions. The biggest change for me, and the reason I rarely came back,  is that my grandmother no longer resides here. That was a tough pill to swallow the first step inside the door.

I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t have to be. In the other room is an older man trying his best to sleep. Too much time in the hospital left him with a horrible schedule. My father’s health brought me here. One day he’s headed off to the doctor about the shortness of his breath and the next I am on my way across state lines to meet up with him in ICU only to chase an airlift to a hospital that was going to do a quintuple bypass surgery. A week in the hospital and almost a week in this house.  He doesn’t complain,  he doesn’t need pain pills, and he’s almost the model patient. Only I see his frailty; his fear. He lived alone and the worst cases flashed before him and, like me in the past, has faced Mortality.  So we take this one day at a time, me by his side through recovery. One more week and back across state lines to my home where he can recover and not be alone. I’m not saying the times won’t be trying, but we’ll at least have each other around.

Besides, wait until the stories roll in about my now teenage daughter,  the terror twins(miniature pinchers), and my aunt Birdy, who I have also become caretaker to.

So if I find time between all this chaos don’t think I wouldn’t jump at the chance. Got the muse juiced up and notebooks everywhere as something hits me. I’ll get through it all, and heck maybe it will help me in the long run.

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The Death of a Character: To Mourn or Not to Mourn

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I was asked a question earlier by someone I find both wise, endearing, and completely talented in all that she does.  Her question has been bouncing around in my mind and I realize that my answer to her was very swift and two dimensional so maybe I should expand a little on the subject.  The question happened after I was very pleased with writing a prominent character’s death.

I took it as someone who writes herself wanted to know if we had similar feelings.  She asked, “Do you mourn them? If you don’t, do you feel badly for not mourning them?”  

I responded simply with, “I’ve been juggling with this death, going back and forth whether I should or not and ultimately for the final book sets things to 11.  I do some more than others depending how attached I am. This one, yes. The great thing, though, is I don’t write in order so I will get to enjoy them for a while longer.” and “Some I am glad for their demise, though, and celebrate.”

If you happened to have read Rise of a Queen or Of Darkness and Light (heck, maybe even both) you realize something pretty quick.  I kill characters off quite a bit.  Not in a George R.R. Martin or even Steven Moffat way; the emotional trauma I might cause myself would be asylum worthy if I were to venture down that path.  Nonetheless, I do tend to find a great death scene to write.  Something I have said since the beginning and can shout from the rooftops…..EVERYTHING HAPPENS FOR A REASON.  No matter how lighthearted or gut-wrenchingly dark things get, there is a purpose for everything that I write and it may not even be clear until you reach the final book; I write for the long haul.  For some characters I realize that they are meant to have their demise as part of something highly entertaining or a need for vengeance that even the reader is screaming for.

Since we live in the land of spoiler alerts, I guess I should say if you have not read the first book SPOILER AHEAD….

Greco’s death serves the biggest purpose of the entire series.  I know people have told me they’re either team Greco or Team Isaac which I have to always answer, “Why not be Team Tessa?”  Both are what makes her who she is.  Greco’s death sets the stage for everything she becomes as the Queen of the Levé’s, the main reason I labeled the first book of the series Rise of a Queen.

END OF SPOILER

Through all this, I still have to say I haven’t really answered the true question beyond the basics.  YES, YES, YES, I mourn my character’s deaths….the ones that I have cultivated and molded for years until their very last breath.  The necessity sometimes breaks my heart and for some people, they want to deny that death understandably.  I have been working on this series since the early 2000’s when I wrote a small bit, set it aside and didn’t pick it up again until a dear friend prodded me with such tenacity it had awaken something inside of me.  With guidance and suggestions Tessa became who she was and The Vampire Realm became so real I could close my eyes and see everything inside of it.  It has consumed me ever since and as I am working on this final book of the series I believe I will mourn The Vampire Realm itself, but at the same time feel pleased and accomplished for giving my baby the life and excitement it contained.

To all the villains that I happen to not mourn…….all I can say is I have raised many a wine glass in your demise and take solace in the fact that I can feel better by simply going back and turning to those pinnacle pages at any time I feel the need.

 

Things are changing…..and that’s a good thing!

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photo courtesy of federico stevanin/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

So here I am starting fresh and new. Spring has opened up the petals of my hibernating soul and soon I will blossom once again for the world to see. What does that mean exactly? It’s an answer that is beneficial to you, my readers and fans, and to me regarding inspiration and communication.

For you all I have decided that I am going to attempt to communicate more. This means those things I fear most, Twitter, Facebook, anything social media I will be more vocal on. So pull your boot straps up because this chick is going to start to talk. I’m really excited about my upcoming work and I am making a push for completion. I want to interact with all of you more on any level that I can. We thrive on the interaction of each other and nothing would make me happier than to be talking to you! I might be an introvert at heart but I love to socialize. I do see the irony in that. I like to socialize but I don’t know how to deal with social media much.

What’s going to happen with me is that I am going to show more of my process. The steps that I’m taking, I’m not going to hide away as a deep dark secret. Maybe that’s what has been holding me back. What I do know is that I am working hard to connect with the inspiration from the world and with the reality that it takes work to get things done and not just hope that it will settle itself. I want to blog more, I want to express my process, I want to share the human part of me while trying to push the too-humble persona out of the way and be a bit more hands on with everything involving my work. Everyone knows that I write because I love it and without it I don’t feel complete. The thing everyone DOESN’T know is that I also write for people, the fans, and without fans(you) I’m only doing a portion of what I love and cannot feel complete.

Finding the right balance between everything will be tricky, but I’m sure that it can be done with help all around. So I will be seeing you soon and you will no doubt be hearing more from and about me. Let’s embrace this spring change together and go for a very wonderful ride.

I need an explaination

Google + and its many uses.  Help?

Twitter:  I speak and promote but what benefit does it have?

FB page:  what are its benefits?

My author page is informative but I have noticed a difference between those that like my blogs and those who like/read my books.  How should I mesh these in together?

I see many an author do video’s.  What are the points to this?  Does it have to be that high tech?  I’m trying to get to the next gen without feeling like a dinosaur.  Input.  I see over 100 fans, I’d like more than just a few responses please.

What next?

Now that I have announced my upcoming promotion in regard to my free e-book download I feel the need to stare at my blog space and think hard…..maybe too hard.  I feel the need to say something so witty, so profound that it will go down in the books as the best post ever in the entire universe.

Well, that’s never going to happen and I would self-check myself into any ward that would take me if I thought that grande.

Instead we’ll go with something simple. maybe two, maybe three off the wall ideas that float off the top of my head.  I wish I could invoke George Carlin at this very moment since he is known to just pull up single ideas and turn it into rolling ball of laughter and deep thought.

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We will go with The Dog Days of Summer. I began in one southern state that was so hot and humid before the official beginning of summer I was afraid what was in store for me.  Then I moved (Still in the Southeast US) and it became glorious.  My allergies cleared up, the days were cooler, the humidity didn’t have me gasping for air, and I have sidewalks.  YES SIDEWALKS.  I’m not quite certain Alabama really understands what a sidewalk is unless its downtown, and even then they are as cracked as the terrible streets they are parallel to.  As Summer slowly rolls down I am now getting some heat push-back, but one thing is that its not raining; that has happened a lot.  I had to check the address to make sure I hadn’t moved back to the UK.  ANYWAY—–see I lose all sense of direction when I think hard—–time will be changing, fall will be coming, I will welcome the brisk wind on my face, the pumpkin spice in the air (waiting for the Latte’s, but really can’t wait to make my cheesecakes), the quiet nights sitting on my porch, cup of tea in hand and just looking up to the sky through the ever changing rainbow of leaves.  I do miss this part of the country, the beauty of autumn.  So what is the equivalent of Dog Days of Summer?

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Heading to Kindle Only for 90 days; but there is still time

I have decided that the Kindle is, by far, my readers preferred method of digital reading pleasure for my book.

As much as it may pain a few of you, I will be strictly Kindle.  For now, the other downloads are available, so if you have another reader besides a Kindle, now would be to download it HERE.  It could take a few days to up to a month, I will gauge how things go at this point and delete those that are no longer active.  It’s been a fun ride, but as my second book comes to fruit this seems to be the perfect opportunity to get things out there.

Rise of a Queen will always be available on the Kindle and in Paperback through Amazon, once again through the front of my author’s page.

I will blog and tweet and whatever else I have access to to inform those that the relaunch has been complete and I hope that you will tell your friends and maybe post a review or two in the process.

Am I a Blogger or an author?

It seems I have morphed into two separate people.  My blog, oddly, has very little to do with my writing. At this point it seems almost like a little extra something here and there.  I don’t blog constantly and oh I wish I could, but there is only so much I can talk about isn’t there?  Yay I get my work out, yay one thing or another. Those come on occasion.

But what really happens when I blog? Usually its at an odd hour of the night because I have this odd thing about staying up way past my bedtime. When I do it is out of curiosity or frustration or just downright head-scratching.

So here’s the thing, I have come to love both in one way or another, but I am certain someone could do a better job than I.  I started off trying to get things off the ground, like many early writers do I went to the *gasp* internet. I swear it was not around when I needed it way back when. It says do this, then that, and before doing another thing don’t forget to one and carry the two and….math and technology. Bloody hell. “Set up a blog” they say. Sure I did that. But it is supposed to be attached to my author page? Or should it BE my author page? No matter what it meant I’ve done it now and I can only cross my fingers it is somewhat easy to navigate. I like easy. Easy is great. No fuss, no muss.

Marketing, yes that’s what it was supposed to be for. I remember now. How good a job am I doing at marketing when I’m just rambling around like someone who’s had one too many a drink and ready to break out the Irish drinking songs.  Now it doesn’t seem to matter. I think I’m getting a fit, even if it’s not my original intent I like reading blogs, I like rambling. The dog and cat only listen so much and we won’t even talk about anybody else for fear of the look of death.