I was tagged for this round by Michael Rupured. Two weeks ago I posted and I’ve got slightly different answers for this round. To check out my previous post go HERE.
What am I working on?
Today I’m finishing up one of my latest Circles books, it will be the third in the series and is called Jewel Cave. I’m also working on book #4 of The Sleepless City, an urban fantasy series written with Anne Barwell. That book is called Checkmate.
The Sleepless City or TSC as Anne and I have come to fondly refer to it was Anne’s idea and I invited myself to join her. For years I wrote in a fandom and I guess you’d call it urban fantasy, but back then I wasn’t aware of the official name for this sub-genre.
The first three books in TSC are a mystery combined with the development of a romance. Book #1, Shades of Sepia written by Anne Barwell, focused on the vampire Simon Hawthorn and human Ben Leyton. I wrote book #2, Electric Candle where Detective Jonas Forge meets, and is very befuddled by his soul mate, Blair Turner. Both are vampires.
Book #3 is called Family and Reflection and it centers around…well now that would be a spoiler! Work on it is underway and Anne’s page is HERE. You’ll have to ask her….hehehehe
Now onto book #4, Checkmate. There’s a bad guy (entity) to hunt down and contain, but there is no development of a romance, no completely central couple. I have the challenge of writing an urban fantasy/romance for a group of established characters. Will there be a love story? For sure, but if you want details you’ll have to wait and see. I will say I have a lot of fun ideas and interesting situations in store for our favorite group of guys. Our plan is to have both books released sometime next year about a month apart.
My other two in progress projects are a scifi trilogy called Novi Orbis and a spin-off of TSC I’ll be writing solo called Akhkharu Nasaru, which translates to Vampire Guard. That particular series will focus on espionage and four of the TSC characters. I’ll have announcements about them, so keep a look out on my website for links!
How does my work differ from others in the genre?
I have no clue since I haven’t really read a lot of vampire or werewolf books. My writing background has always focused on scifi, this is my first real foray into any type of fantasy. My personal reading preferences tend toward non-fiction in the subjects of astronomy and physics. Fiction I read is more scifi with a high emphasis on lots of action. This is also my movie preference. I have a little personal saying that guides me when picking a movie: No car chases, no explosions, no fist-fights, no aliens, no guns? No point.
That has filtered into my writing, since my fiction book choices, that really stick with me and I just love tend to follow the same pattern.
I’d like to think that since I don’t have the reading background in the urban fantasy genre I bring some fresh and new ideas. I’m probably delusional.
Why do I write what I do?
I write the stories that are in my head. Like most writers, I work on projects I’d be interested in reading. For me, writing is as much of an escape as reading. When I see potential for a story, AKA that plot idea, I want to tell that story. I want to see it unfold and I’m a believer in if you want something make it happen. I want to read that story, so I have to write it first.
An interesting side-note to that is when I’m writing a book, I’m focused on each chapter as I write it. I have to keep all those plot balls in the air, not drop them and make everything work out to a logical conclusion. When the time comes, I can go back and simply read my book like I read anyone else’s book I often am surprised by how much I enjoy the story I’ve created.
Even better if a few other people enjoy them too!
How does my writing process work?
I work around a plot. The first thing I do is develop my basic story idea, then I create characters to ‘live’ the plot. There are several steps I go through to create that plot. Often the ideas are great and exciting and then my bubble gets burst in a big way when I find out these things may not work in real life.
There is more leeway writing urban fantasy or scifi than with contemporary, but each world whether it’s our existing one or my created one, has rules. As we all know rules must be followed.
Step one is to research my plot ideas, find ways to make them fit the story I have in mind, or find better things to replace them. Suffice to say Wiki is my friend, as is Google Search. I’m predominately an online researcher. My second favorite method of research is to find someone who is an expert and ask many, many questions. One of the most valuable skills I learned in high school and college was how to find information.
Since I often have multiple projects going at once, I keep notes and write scenes in a virtual note book called One Note. Using One Note is the only way for me to keep myself organized and focused.
My actual writing day varies by the day. I’ve set a goal of 5000 words a week, some weeks I meet that goal, some I exceed it and some I fail miserably. Writing muscles are like any other, you need to exercise them to keep them fit so I write every day no matter if I feel like it or not. That isn’t to say everyday my writing is good, most times what first hits the page is awful. For that reason before I start new writing I go back and review what was completed the day before and do some self-editing (otherwise known as soul searching).
I have a full-time job, so the days I work there, I generally have a two to three hour writing workday as well when I get home. Days that I don’t work at the animal hospital where I’m a veterinary nurse, I put in a six hour or so ‘shift’. Those days I not only write, I work on my website and articles such as this one.
5) Who's next on the blog hop? (Send me links to your site so I can include them in my post)
Kelly Clemmons, Jamie Lynn Miller, Lou Hoffmann, Sarah Madison and Princess S Obriot
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