Tag Archives: progress

The Worst Thing I’ve Ever Written

*To celebrate my two-year blogging anniversary, I’ll be re-blogging some of my favorite posts from 2014 throughout the month of December*

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Lately it feels like that’s what this current WIP is turning out to be. I wrote the other day about how I had my first good writing day in a while but something I didn’t quite clarify was that “good” wasn’t necessarily referring to the actual writing itself. Yes, I gained clarity and yes, the words were flowing but that didn’t mean they weren’t garbage. They were and they are and the more I write the more I dread revisions because this puppy is going to need a lot of work. But what I’ve come to realize in my quest to write a first draft without obsessing over every word is that it’s not the words that matter. What matters is the story. And not whether or not it’s good but whether or not it’s there.

Through five books I’ve been the type of writer who would rather sit and…

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WIP Wednesday

This past Friday I celebrated the release of The Boy In Her Dreams and while I was able to upload that novel a month early, making it available for pre-order, these last two months of finalizing book three in the series are going to have me cutting it dangerously close. I still have my fingers crossed for a December 31st publication date but it will require laser focus and absolutely NO unexpected setbacks. So, yeah, not a very solid plan but like I said, I still have hope. I was heads down all October long trying to get the third draft of this novel finished and as of today at 2:00PM I only have thirty pages left to edit!!!! I would be jumping for joy right now if I didn’t already know that those last thirty pages are absolutely terrible and probably need to be re-written from scratch. I’m giving myself a Sunday night deadline and then I’ll dive straight into the fourth draft since I’ve already been passing along chapters to my beta reader as I go along.

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Book 3 is probably going to be my main focus right up until December 31st but as soon as the new year hits, it’s going to be all about crafting the proper farewell to this series. Book 4 is a monster and as of now the first draft is still sitting at about 50K. Hopefully I’ll be able to spend the entire month of January on getting a good solid draft and then I’m just going to keep chipping away at revisions for as long as it takes. I don’t want to set a deadline for myself right now, even a tentative one, because I really just want to focus on making this story great. I’ve never written a series before, and certainly never a finale like this, and even though I have no idea what kind of pressure I may get from readers or if this series will even attract any readers at all, I want to be totally conscious and committed to finishing this story the right way and not the fast way.

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Since I’m having to push back finishing the first draft for book four, my NA contemporary romance is still on the back burner as well but I hope to return to it sometime this spring. More HUGE NEWS, after a relentless campaign, Amazon has finally price-matched The Girl In Between, which is currently FREE at all major online retailers! Check out my BOOK page for more info on links to where you can download your copy! As for the blog tour, so far everyone’s posts have been going up without a hitch and the series has been getting some stellar reviews. It took a lot of time and effort to put everything together but as more sales and reviews start to trickle in I’m beginning to see the fruits of my labor and it’s just such an incredible feeling! Some more MAJOR NEWS…I daydreamed in my previous WIP Wednesday about someday only having to work one job instead of two and I am thrilled to say that day has finally come! There are just so many wonderful things in motion right now and I’m so incredibly grateful for not only these recent opportunities but for the amazing lessons in patience and perseverance I learned when I thought they’d never come.

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WIP Wednesday

The Girl In Between is OFFICIALLY LIVE!!!! Yes, book one is done and out in the big scary world, finally ready to be read! In all the commotion of making TGIB ready for pre-order and converting review copies and contacting book bloggers I accidentally forgot to upload the manuscript to Barnes & Noble but since their nookpress editor is so ridiculously easy to use I got the story uploaded yesterday and it is now available online as well as at Amazon and, temporarily, Smashwords. I started writing this novel way back in April of 2013 and to know that I never have to tweak another sentence from it is such a relief, not to mention I’m pretty darn proud of it and can’t wait for the first reviews to start trickling in.

Book two has been copy-edited, formatted, and will soon be available for pre-order! Have I mentioned before how much I love the new Amazon pre-order option? Because I do. It’s so convenient and I love that even though book two won’t go live until the end of October, I can go ahead and get it uploaded and out of my way so I can spend this ENTIRE month focused on book three. There are a few last minute things I want to look over, mostly pertaining to the blurb, but once that’s finalized in the next few weeks I will be revealing the cover, along with pre-order links, and Teaser Tuesday will resume with some of my favorite snippets from book two!

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Book three is in much the same place as it was the last time I checked in. September was not the game changer I’d hoped it would be and I actually ended up taking a week off to recoup from the past seven months of feeling like crap. I came back from that break feeling a lot better but I didn’t properly anticipate how much time promo and blog tour stuff would really take and ended up spending most of the month sending out emails, begging people to review my book. I still have so much more to do now that people are starting to respond and bloggers are sending over interview questions or requesting blog posts, but despite the kick-off to the blog tour slowly approaching, I’m making a commitment that October is going to be all about finishing book three. If all goes well, I’ll finish my current round of revisions in the next couple of weeks and then finish the next round by the end of the month, possibly running into early November. Then I’ll send those edits to my FINAL beta reader and hopefully have the final draft ready to go in December. I say hopefully though because if the past few months have taught me anything it’s that you can’t plan for the unexpected and that working sixty hours a week warrants a little R&R every now and then.

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Book four remains untouched but just like I’m devoting October to book three, I plan on devoting the last two months of the year to finishing the first draft of this novel.

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Once that’s done and I’ve collapsed face first in a vat of something warm and hopefully made of chocolate, I will finally return to the real world. No, not the actual real world, I mean I’ll return to my shelved contemporary novel and maybe by then I’ll only be working one job instead of two and there will actually be people out there who are anxiously anticipating reading it.

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WIP Wednesday

It’s finally September and the release of my next novel is less than a month away. A year ago when I published my last novel, Breathing Ghosts, I was racing to finish line edits and copy edits and formatting, but this time around there’s nothing left to tweak or fix or figure out. Book one is ready to go and it’s an amazing feeling. In addition to writing and editing the rest of the series, the last official business regarding The Girl In Between is setting up the blog tour. I’ve just started sending out review requests to bloggers and the first responses are already trickling in and even though it’ll probably take me a couple of weeks to  send out emails, I feel strangely serene about the whole thing. Not rushed, not anxious, just ready. I’m so ready for people to read this book and for people to experience yet another stylistic evolution from me. It’s a new genre with a new focus and I think it has the potential to have the kind of greater mass appeal that my first three novels didn’t necessarily have. With that said, there is still so much work to do in terms of promotion, as well as when it comes to finishing the other books in the series. If anyone is at all interested in reviewing the first book in the series, send me an email and I can get you an electronic copy in the format of your choice. I’m sure I’ll put a more official call out to bloggers soon to set up some kind of spotlight post for all of the people participating but if anyone wants to get a head start just contact me!

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It took almost two whole months but I FINALLY finished the final read-through of book 2 and it is currently off for one last copy edit. Getting through the last read-through of this novel was torture. These books are so much longer than what I’m used to writing so each round of edits took a significant amount of time and when you’ve read something twenty times already, forcing yourself to read it just one more is excruciating. The good news is that after finishing it once more from beginning to end I can honestly say that I still love it. I just hope that other people do to. The OFFICIAL release date for book two in the series is October 31st!

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I’m currently working through revisions for book 3. These are also taking longer than expected but that’s mostly because since February I’ve been suffering from debilitating migraines. For some awful reason my 23rd year has been all about inheriting my mother’s many health problems and developing strange ones of my own. I’ve experienced so many setbacks that I haven’t necessarily blogged about, mostly because I’ve spent most of 2014 either at one of my two jobs or in bed recovering from them. The good news is that I’ve made the adult decision to take myself to the doctor tomorrow to get tested for hyperthyroidism so hopefully I’ll be feeling better soon. Once I am, I hope to reignite the insane writing pace I was able to maintain most of last year and maybe that will make up for all of the time I’ve lost.

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The fourth book in the series is stuck in limbo right now for the same reason. I’m re-writing the first draft from scratch, which is usually a lot of fun for me because I like treating every scene and every moment as a puzzle piece that just needs to be jiggled into the right place. Once I’m done with revisions for the third novel, which I hope to have off to my next beta reader by mid-September, I plan on devoting most of the rest of the year to getting book 4 just right. I’ve never written a finale before with this much weight. It’s a lot of pressure and I’m still waiting for a really powerful moment of clarity on how to finally put these characters to rest. I just hope something comes to me soon so that I at least have a concept to work with.

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August was full of challenges and a perfect depiction of what this year as a whole has really been like. In the moment, the writing of these novels hasn’t felt that much different than novels I’ve written in the past, but in hindsight I realize that I’ve already accomplished much more than I give myself credit for. I’m not sure yet how I’ll celebrate the release of The Girl In Between but I’m making a promise to myself that I will. On September 30th I won’t look back and I won’t look ahead. I won’t worry or wait or doubt. Instead, I’ll buy myself an ice cream cone or maybe an entire cake, I’ll eat the whole thing, and then I’ll take the longest nap in history because I’ve earned it.

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WIP Wednesday

It’s August, which means that I am teetering on the edge of panic mode, which means that I will be traveling at lightning speed for the next…sixteen weeks. In two months I will be publishing my first novel in exactly one year and even though I’ve already accomplished so much in the past twelve months, suddenly it feels like there is still so much left to do.

Book 1 is OFFICIALLY DONE! YES! FINALLY! It has been copy edited and now all that’s left to do is format this baby, approve the final covert art, and hit publish! EEK! EEK again! That’s actually feigned excitement because the truth is, at this point I am completely numb. I’ve already written almost 400,000 words in this series and even though I know I’ll be nervous once I actually send the first book to reviewers, I also have this euphoric defiance about the whole thing and am too exhausted to care whether people hate it or not. But I’m sure this feeling is only temporary and as soon as the first reviews roll in I’ll either be crying with joy and relief or crying in absolute horror.

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The final read-through for book 2 feels like it has literally taken MONTHS and…I’m still not quite done. In fact, I’m only about half way, which is a sure sign that this past month I accidentally fell into some kind of wormhole where time works in reverse. But since August is all about reaching maximum speed and defying the laws of physics I will, I REPEAT, I WILL get this read-through finished by the end of next week and then it will be off for it’s final copy edit.

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I’ve had to push back edits for book 3 several times over the past two months but hopefully I’ll get notes back from my beta reader soon and I can get to work on the next draft. If all goes well I should have the fourth draft done by September and the fifth draft done by October, which means a late fall release date is still possible!

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As for the last book in the series, I’ve finally broken the 50K mark. Progress is still moving slow but the entire month of August will be devoted to getting this first (practically second) draft in good shape. I know what I want the finale to look and feel like but translating that is harder than I anticipated. But I can’t slack off on this one because I know once the first book is out in the world it will be way too easy to get distracted by sales (or lack-there-of) and reviews and book tours and everything else that goes along with publishing a novel. So this is it. I have to figure out a way to make it happen and I have to do it now before anyone else’s opinions can get in the way.

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Speaking of other people’s opinions, writing isn’t the only thing on my agenda this month. Now that I’m steadily approaching the publication date of my next novel there is so much to do! First things first, I’ve got to finalize the blurbs for the first two books, then I have to finalize the cover art, then I have to format the first two books for all the major online retailers, then I have to send out hundreds and hundreds of emails to bloggers begging them to read my book, followed by hours and days and, possibly, weeks of agonizing over their responses, and then I have to get promo and prizes ready for giveaways and interviews and teasers. And oh my gosh I totally forgot about teasers! This will mean one more quick skim of my favorite chapters before plucking out a few gems that have to be powerful enough to make people want to keep reading. And on top of all of that I have to stay focused on finishing the third book in the series as well as getting the fourth to a semi-okay place. And I have to do all of it blindfolded while juggling chainsaws!!!! Just kidding, but you get the idea. Basically what I’m trying to say is that August is make or break for me and I hope, with everything in me, that it’s the former.

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