Thursday, July 23, 2015

If it's three, let it be

photo credit: IMG_2692 via photopin (license)

I have to say, if I had known how difficult it would be to write a trilogy, I might have chosen otherwise. Although revisiting my characters on a long-term basis is a satisfying gig, just the mere weight of having to dissect and present their lives in literary form has also been a trial. Sometimes, especially with these edits, I wanted to yell at my characters and say, "I don't care about your stupid lives! Please stop doing stupid things!" Lol. Oh, but it's true. It's hard enough trying to justify my numbnut actions on a constant basis!

But I guess in a way it's also gratifying. You can learn a lot from your characters, such as: don't make promises with a half-soul human; if you see a coin while hanging off a cliff, don't pick it up; don't time-travel unless you absolutely have to; stay out of those creepy cults; don't let a-hole rockstars rule your life; if you have a gift, use it, don't lose it; gun fights with a soul stealer is a ticket to death. And many others.

I think my next book will be a standalone. No sequels.

Hope your day is excellent! Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Shoo Fly!

photo credit: The eyes have it . via photopin (license)

The other week the kids and I were hanging out in the backyard when all of a sudden this nasty little insect came and sat near Julia. I thought it was a wasp. And what do you do with a wasp? You scare it off, of course! Without letting it know what's what I squirted it with a water gun, which turned out to be a really bad idea. That thing went psycho and attacked Julia full-force, who screamed her head off. Then it went after me, and still thinking it was a wasp, I let it sit on my finger while not moving. That's when the little sucker bit me. Oh, heck no! I swatted it away, because I'm not getting bit by anything, and then the flying Hitler went even more psycho and dive-bombed all three of us. I wish there had been a camera on the backyard, and perhaps Google does have one, you never know, but we three screamed and bee-lined to the house. Well, before Julia made it to the backdoor I saw the little winged a-hole was on her head, and she was about to go in! Oh, double heck no! I screamed that it was on her head and not to go inside, and of course she screamed too. We all screamed. Then it flew away.


Turns out it was a horsefly. Yick. And I let it bite me. They draw blood and will suck the soul out of anything they can get their disgusting teeth on. They will also follow an opponent for miles without giving up.

But they do have cool eyes.

Ever had your own experience with this jerk? Do tell.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

New Structure, Old Structures

Hey, lovely people! I know I haven't been around much lately, or at all, but I hope life is good and that things are going well. Not gonna lie, edits are tough, but I think stepping back and getting some perspective has helped me figure out a way to go that will be beneficial to the story. Also, life itself has offered some additional insight into my character's motivations. It's pretty interesting, actually. However, I know most of this means absolutely nothing to most of you, especially when I've written it all in gibberish! But thanks for reading anyway.

Here's something I enjoy doing with my time away from writing. I love old houses and caught on to this fellow's massive amount of video footage of abandoned homes. Kind of sad that some of them were torn down after he filmed, but isn't it interesting to get a first-hand glimpse of these forgotten structures? It makes you wonder what happened to make the former owners leave so suddenly, that there's still possessions hanging around. I would love, love, love to go through some of these houses myself. For now, though, I am content to armchair it on YouTube.

Take care, awesome people. Hope you're having a wonderful July!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

My Friend

One of my best friends in seventh grade was Jeremiah Washington. His family moved to our small town the summer before and although I wasn't too sure of his loony antics I soon warmed up because of one thing: he knew how to make me laugh. Every day at lunch we'd sit together and in between bites of PB&J I'd watch him talk with his hands. "What do you think of that?" "I think it's stupid." "What, stupid like this school?" "You didn't say that." "Oh yes I did, you fool." People would make fun of him, call him crazy, because he talked with his hands. To me, he was a puppeteer without the puppet. He didn't care. He kept right on doing it. I really liked that about Jeremiah. His skin was a double fudge brownie, and his hair short and tight against his head. His smile was big and could eclipse those times when I thought he might be sad. Jeremiah was beautiful, and a genius, it's a fact.

While traversing up our school's lamented, Gothic stairwell to the second floor one day, I heard the sound of angry voices. They were voices I knew. The seventh grade boys stood in a huddle and repeatedly mentioned Jeremiah's name. "I'm going to beat that kid up. I can't stand him." Some made excuses, such as, he was hyper, didn't walk fast enough, walked too fast, he was too skinny, kinda crazy, kinda stupid. But none of them said what they really meant. I ascended that last step and broke through the group. The bell rang. My locker stuck as I yanked at it and rattled when I slammed it. My eyes stung.

A few weeks later, Jeremiah and his family moved away. Someone said, back to Kansas City. No one had to tell me why. My lunches were slow and filled with too much quiet. I missed my friend. I missed the whip of his hands, the sarcasm, the smile.

That next summer I spent a few weeks at my cousin's house in an affluent area just outside of the city. I was asked to stay because my Aunt knew I'd keep her little girl occupied during housework and mid-afternoon trips to the ladies' club. She dropped us off at the library, the pool, the indoor skating rink, the movies—everywhere. It was the kind of life inaccessible to my lower middle-class family, so I was okay with being the free babysitter even if my self-pride took a shrapnel sting of shame. One morning, Aunt Kathleen took us along while shopping for clean linen at a local department store. While she shopped, we explored. There were fabrics: white cotton, blue cotton, sheets and pillowcases, towels so thick your hand left a dent, and little fancy soaps shaped in roses. Since we were the only ones there, we allowed ourselves to run freely across the tiled floors and through the labyrinth rows of merchandise. When another family came in, we were told to quiet down and behave. Instantly, I recognized Jeremiah. He was there with his mother and younger siblings. Neither of us spoke, we weaved through the linens, he and I, our eyes meeting, recognizing. I saw his cocoa face disappear under the balloon of an ecru linen as he lifted it and ducked. We did this numerous times, sometimes him, sometimes me, until his mother said it was time to go. Jeremiah stood, shrugged it off. "Hey, don't I know you?" Without answering, I watched him slowly join his family and leave.

Whenever I hear that song Jeremiah Was a Bullfrog, I think of him. It doesn't really fit, but I like it anyway.

Friday, April 24, 2015

I knew you were going to say that

Today the predicted release date for The Love Seekers has been revealed: Winter 2016. Yay! So, a while to wait, but I actually love the timing. Since the book spends a good portion in the snowy landscape of Aspen, a winter release has just the right feel. By the way, my poor editor has been suffering migraines and consequently the book has been switched to another, and equally talented, set of eyes. It's a bit tricky, but I know all will be well. More than anything I wish Summer a speedy recovery and happier days ahead.

I've come to realize that there's a bit of intuitive trickery going on with my writing. Kind of knew it with the first book, but now I truly understand the depth of just how much I borrow from an 'out there' vein of creative substance. It's funny considering the third book deals with Emma's psychic ability and how she comes to accept and own it, yet I had no idea the theme would play so strongly in the story line as Love was going to be my most 'normal' book. Oh well. It happened because intuition wrote it for me. Also, as I said on another post, there are events and situations in the book which mirror my own life. At the time, I had no idea I was doing this. Talk about a slap to the head! I read those last pages and felt a mixture of déjà vu and bewilderment. What will people think when they see the darker side of my life? Too late to worry about that now. I love the way Emma deals with things. She's been such a beautiful, beautiful addition to my world. It's amazing what a character can teach you and how much you can love them for doing so. Sometimes I'll see a girl/woman and think, "That's an Emma," and it makes me incredibly happy.

So . . . have you ever created something guided by your intuition or experienced a moment of random déjà vu?


photo credit: crystal ball via photopin (license)

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Green-Eyed Jealousy (the artistic kind)

Okay, I admit it: I get jealous sometimes. Not in relationships, not with money, but with creative things. Madly jealous. It started in seventh grade when I noticed a 'friend' had better art skills than me. This feeling built in my gut like I wanted to push her off a cliff and watch vultures rip her fingers off. I've kind of sort of gotten over this, but not completely. There's this new movie coming out called The Age of Adaline about a young woman who receives the fountain of youth from a horrible car wreck (cleverly mixed with a bolt of lighting), and it's got me feeling a bit uneasy. Cool stuff and I should have thought of it! Back five years ago when that whole time travel, non-ending life thing was going around, I did try to come up with something similar, but was fully steeped in Seekers mode. Except, oh yeah, wait, that's totally what I was doing. The Soul Seekers and The Time Seekers are all about time and history and a young woman stuck in the middle of it all; never-ending life and love. Not to brag or anything, but I can't help but notice the similarities to Emma and William in the movie (I mean, the male lead really looks a lot like William. Hot.) But is that a bad thing? No. It's actually really great. My hope is that whoever watches the film will hunger for more . . .  and promptly go out and buy my novels!

 The Holy Grail

Shew, glad I got that off my chest!

So . . . have you ever felt the heavy, sick, evil pangs of jealousy with any person or any thing in your life, and what did you do about it? 


Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Hard work, or hardly working?


Well, that was rough. I finished the first round of edits, but way, way later than I would have liked to. Here I was all enthusiastic about doing them, but life just sort of crippled me and—do you know how hard it is to work on a book that semi-parallels your real life? Hard. Real hard. Wouldn't recommend it, and yet the whole process was cathartic. I am going to guess right now that The Love Seekers will end up being the best thing I've written so far and will have more readers and reviews, mainly because it deals with real-life and doesn't try to dodge behind any paranormal trickery. There is paranormal, and I love paranormal, but it doesn't shield the book from basic human truths. The whole thing is more mature because Emma finally has the chance to grow up and make decisions on her own. That was very important to me. I had some folks tell me they couldn't read the first book because it was about a teenage girl, and I completely understood where they were coming from. However, this third book comes from a place that is about facing the nitty-gritty of life, and so with that I hope the readership will span across ages and genres, and hearts. It feels like it will.

Here it is springtime already and over a month of school until summer vacation. Can't believe it. I always go into high production mode right around now because I have to, and I don't know, something happens that pushes me forward. Some emotion or hope. Last year I was working on a story and would take breaks to go sit outside while Henry explored the backyard, and I had Pink Floyd's The Dark Side of the Moon on my headphones and a pair of rainbow vision sunglasses. Trippy. It was cloudy that day and when the sun came out during the vocal solo and I was like, whoa . . . Changed me somewhere inside. Blown away. And no, I don't do drugs.

What a tough year this has been. I feel like I've had soul chemo. Something weird is going on in the cosmos—tell me I'm not the only one experiencing the weird and seismic shift? Go ahead and lay it all out. What's been going on with you?