I plot. I spend weeks figuring out characters, locations, and flaws. And then I dig in deep. I plot my story out, by acts and beats, down to each and every scene of my story. And, sometimes, those scenes have beats and entire stretches of dialog in the notes. Thinking Through Our Fingers: In the Mind of an Outliner – Arcs and Structure. This is front loading a story with lots of work. I know this. But as a teacher, mom, wife, and all the other things, I realized I was doing more work trying to keep a story in my head than taking theRead More →

Today, I’m interviewing a fellow Cupid’s Cafe author. If you enjoyed Exactly Like You, step back into that mystical matchmaking environment with Captured Memories. What inspired you to write this book? This book leapt out of me in a sweep of pure inspiration. Honestly, it’s thanks to the concept of Cupid’s Café. I loved the idea of writing romances where the hero and heroine are both struggling with real world problems and issues that weren’t getting talked about. While Lori wrote a beautiful book on depression and healing from loss, and Landra’s riveting read featured bipolar disorder and bulimia, I wanted to tackle issues thatRead More →

I want to preface this by saying that I was contacted by Aleksandra Lechwar, who runs a great Etsy shop called Just 1 More Chapter. Apparently, my Christmas post of great reader gifts was sending Aleksandra some traffic (yay, right?) and he wanted to thank me. He offered to let me pick out a couple of pieces for free, which I gladly did because they looked so cool. I chose two pairs of earrings. One, Wicked, because I adore Elpheba and her story. It’s one of my favorite books. The second set, The Complete Works of Edgar Allen Poe, was because that was a bookRead More →

Each newsletter will highlight four different authors. You’ll find new excerpts, books on sale, book boyfriends (<3), and author spotlights. Each newsletter will also feature contests (plural) that you’ll automatically be entered to win by virtue of just being a subscriber.Read More →

I recently finished Magnate by Joanna Shupe. This first in a trilogy gripped me until the very. last. page. Like, I went and bought the prequel novella, read it in a day, then pre-ordered the other two books. This month and January will be good reading months for me. And even though it’s set in New York City’s Gilded Age (which Wikipedia tells me is from the 1870s to about 1900), I decided a book this great had to offer some quality dating advice. So, you’re welcome. Don’t have silly, girly ideas, like thinking for yourself or working. That’s beneath the elite women. Unless, you’re awesome, and evenRead More →

Scrivener. Although I still make use of paper, I keep my entire outline in Scrivener. I didn’t for the story I wrote before my current one. I kept them on index cards. Then I got sick and didn’t write for a month. And misplaced my cards. Scariest week of my life, thinking I was going to have to recreate that outline.Read More →

I haven’t done one of these in a while. For one thing, I’ve been busy writing! I finished all three of my fifties novellas (and I’m in the middle of editing them right now), I’m just (like this weekend) finished with second round edits on my novel, Infamous, contracted with The Wild Rose Press, and I’ve started the second novel to follow-up Infamous. I’ll have lots more info for you on all of that in the coming months. But for now, what I’m digging this month. First, we have to talk about Game of Thrones. In my opinion, it was the best. season. ever. In fact, it wasRead More →

I recently read Sarah MacLean‘s third Rule of Scoundrels book, No Good Duke Goes Unpunished. Yes, it’s a historical but I think there are still some wisdom nuggets we can mine. If you’re going to accidentally frame a man for your murder, make sure he’s not your soul mate. It makes quite the mess to clean up later in life. This is probably a good rule in general, as coming back from the dead would be challenging in any situation. Women who work for a living have rough hands. And a man falling in love can’t stop thinking of them. A boxing ring and aRead More →

Please welcome L.A.  Kelley to the blog today. She’s discussing her wonderful novel, Rimrider, which is a contender on Amazon’s Kindle Scout program. She’s going to tell you all about the book, Kindle Scout, and how it benefits you, the reader. (Click that gorgeous cover to see it in its full-size glory.) What the heck is Kindle Scout? A few short years ago, Amazon launched a venture for new, never-before-published books where readers help decide a contract. Selected novels are published by Kindle Press and receive 5-year renewable terms, a $1,500 advance, 50% eBook royalty rate, rights reversions and featured Amazon marketing. The marketing part isRead More →

I wanted to share my post from the HSG blog this month because it’s about writing accountability. I have quazillioned my output this year and if you want to do the same, go read my post! Writing AccountabilityRead More →