A day late and a dollar short–more, actually.

As far as I’m concerned, 2017 can go fuck itself. I wanted to make this post near the beginning of this year, but life hasn’t been letting me do much of what I want lately. In 2017 I began having chronic pain in my back and hips with sciatica, and despite physical therapy, various drugs and some procedures, I’m still having chronic pain even now. Combine that together with my current under-employed status and the stress of not having enough to pay bills and relying on help from family, and it makes for a pretty poor setting to be writing anything at all.

2017 was the worst year for writing since about 2010 or so . . . or at least that’s what it felt like. I haven’t yet looked at the numbers, so we’ll see.

Here’s my breakdown of what I wrote in 2017:

Oddities book: I wrote a total of 48,146 words, bringing the book to 60,242 words by December 31, 2017. (estimated to be 95k at completion).

Fae book: I wrote a total of  8,849 words, bringing this book to 61,662 in 2017. Estimated total length? I have no clue, since it’s already longer than I originally planned. I’m not even at the climax scene yet!

Deena tales: I finished the 8th tale and published it and then started on the 9th tale. Total words written: 8096. (9th tale ended at 5487 words for the year)

Total words written in 2017: 65,091.

Total words written in 2016?  152, 421.

Yeah, 2017 was a bad year. I wish I could say 2018 is doing better, but it’s actually doing even worse, so far.

My only goals this year are to finish the three books listed above. That’s it. If I can do that, I’ll be happy. On the bright side, I actually published 4 things in 2017–the two books with Riptide, Part 8 of the Deena tales (under another pseudonym), and I republished the novella that originally was published by Torquere. I’m a little down that my full-length novels sell as much as I hoped, particularly the second Oddities book, Fraud Twice Felt. But I received mostly good reviews and those who did read them seemed to enjoy them.

(My other goals for 2017 are to find a job that can actually pay the bills, and find some way to manage the chronic pain that doesn’t rely on something like narcotics. Errrgh. )

Send me a prayer or a kind word. I could really use it.

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Struggling

Still here.

Still in pain. And it’s amazing how much chronic pain can suck the life out of you, drain away your energy and your drive, and make even enjoyable activities dead and lifeless. I had two procedures to hopefully fix the issue, but the relief was short-lived and I’m back to struggling every day to simply haul myself to the EDJ, put in the hours that won’t even pay enough to settle all the bills, and then rest.

I’m still writing. But wow. So slow. Sales of course have tapered off and I know I need to get things turned in, get that next book written, but it’s hard to concentrate, let alone be creative. Having a financial crisis on top of things doesn’t help either. I have to pretend to be upbeat and energetic in interviews in order to get a job that will dig me out of this hole, and that’s draining too. I have to dig deep simply to find the energy to spend any time with any of my friends at all.

This isn’t meant to be a ‘pity poor me’ post, however. There have been a few great reviews that I’ve come across which help encourage me to keep going. I’m committed to finishing the Oddities series and I still have plenty of passion for the boys.

I apologize to readers that I’m not getting these books out more quickly. I sincerely hope you’ll hang in there with me.

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Status of WIPS as of 10/10/2017:

  1. 3rd Oddities book is now at 54,417 words. I have about another 1800 words needing to be typed in. Estimated total length:  95k.
  2. YA m/m paranormal currently at 60,030, and about to head into the climax. Estimated total maybe 70-75k?
  3. Deena and the Professor Part 9:  Currently at 4096 with another 400 words to type up,  estimated total 10k.

 

A Quick Update

I know I’ve been very quiet lately–barely any online presence at all. The last two months have been a blur for me, trying simply to get through each day. I understand now what chronic pain is, and how it can swallow your life whole.

I feel like I’m barely crawling, in getting anything done at all. That includes writing. The old spoons analogy really applies here–I look at each day and know that I’ll only be able to do a few things before I have to lay in the recliner and let the aggravated nerves settle down again.

But today hopefully that will change. I’m heading out in an hour to do a procedure where my doctor will be cauterizing some of the nerves in my lower back and sacral area, so that I no longer have these shooting pains down my legs and the ever-present dagger in my back. Apparently it all comes from arthritis, which I seem to be developing at an alarming rate. I’m not THAT old!!

Wish me luck.

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WIPs:

Book Three of the Oddities series: currently at 48,501 words. (Plus about 1200 words hand written in a notebook needing to be typed into the Word file).

Fae Fortunes: currently at 58,741 words.

Deena and the Professor Part Nine: 3006 words.

The Third Oddities Book

So I’m writing, not as quickly as I’d like to be writing, but nevertheless making progress on my books in progress. I’m at the halfway point of the 3rd Oddities book now, and I have a few options in the coming chapters of the characters from previous books I could bring in.

I’m debating on who would be best to help Derwin and Elliot in their latest endeavor, and therefore, I’m putting up a poll for readers. Is there a particular character you’d like to see return in Book 3? This book will focus on that shadow organization mentioned in Book One, and the larger threat to Oddities in Nis.

I’d love to hear some feedback. Thanks! And yes, the picture is what I imagine Lacey to look like. I haven’t found pictures for the others yet.

 

 

Time for another update

It’s been a while since I gave an update of my works in progress, so here we go! May was an incredibly busy month thanks to the release of two novels, but now things have quieted down and I’m trying to focus on writing.  While work, health concerns and personal life continue to make meeting my goals difficult, I’m trying my best.

So here’s as of  June 15:

  • Book 3 of the Oddities series, 41,526 words, estimated final length 95k.
  • Fae Fortunes (gay paranormal YA), currently at 56,918 words, estimated final length 65k.
  • Deena and the Professor Part 9 (as Trudy Judd, BDSM serial), currently at 2133 words, final estimated 10k.

Once I complete one of these projects, then I’ll probably work on another installment of my Hard Hat short stories between Gary and Tim, construction workers figuring out a relationship together.

After that? I’m not entirely sure. I still have a lesbian mystery series set at a college knocking around inside my skull, or something new may come along, demanding to be written. We’ll see. I know I have 3 more books in the Oddities series featuring a new set of main characters. Beyond that, again I’m not sure if I’ll end the series or keep going. I tend to be somewhat of a “pantster,” meaning I write by the seat of my pants with only a vague idea of the path. I always have some idea of the ending, but it’s the journey that is a mystery.

 

And now I’ll get back to it!

 

 

Character Playlist

I didn’t manage to get out a post yesterday since things have been crazy lately and I’ve been dealing with a chronic pain issue. However, I want to repost one of my guests posts that seemed very popular with the first book but was mainly missed this time–the musical playlist for Derwin and Elliot. Also, here are the rest of the links to the blog tour stops, including another guest post where I go into detail about the yokai featured in the world of the Oddities.

Enjoy!

June 1 and June 2 tour stops:

OMG Reads (playlist)

Butterfly-o-meter

Fangirl Moments

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words–Guest Post about the yokai

Wicked Faeries Review

Book Bayou Junkie

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Character Playlist

During my blog tour for the first Oddities book, Murder Once Seen, I included a post about the playlists for Derwin and Elliot and talked about how I use music in my writing. Readers enjoyed the playlists, so I’m doing it again for Book 2, Fraud Twice Felt. In the first book, Derwin and Elliot were separate entities with different tastes in music, so I had a playlist for each, based on music they might like, music that inspired me during the writing, or music that I felt fit the journeys the characters were on.

This time when I started thinking about a playlist, I found I could no longer separate the two boys. They’ve merged into a couple. Therefore, I have only a single playlist of songs that I think best fit this book and the boys. The songs give clues into the characters, the plot of the book and the feel of the series. I typically don’t have the luxury of actually writing to music, but I still listen to music while plotting ideas, often while driving in the car. I love how lyrics can fit in perfectly with a character’s situation.

So here’s my playlist:

Fraud Twice Felt Playlist

  1. Best Day of My Life – American Authors
  2. Addicted to You – Avicii
  3. I’m Still Standing –Elton John
  4. Prevent This Tragedy – Alkaline Trio
  5. Megalomaniac – Incubus
  6. Respect – Aretha Franklin
  7. This is War – 30 Seconds to Mars
  8. Murder City – Green Day
  9. Demons – Imagine Dragons
  10. Lay Your Hands on Me – Bon Jovi
  11. Follow Me – Muse
  12. Summertime – MCR

I’ll leave it to readers to figure out how those songs tie in to the characters and plot of the book—this time I’ve included a song or two that pertains to secondary characters, particularly the gang leader Roy Yoshiro, who features prominently in the book.

I hope readers enjoy these songs, and I hope they enjoy reading the continued adventures of Derwin and Elliot in Fraud Twice Felt.

Buy the book now on Amazon!

 

 

The Tour continues–check out the latest blog stops for Fraud Twice Felt

It’s Wednesday, and I’ve got more links to share from the blog tour for my gay paranormal romantic suspense novel, Fraud Twice Felt (Book 2 of the Oddities Series). Again, remember to comment on any of the blog tour stops for a chance to win a $20 Riptide gift card and a free ebook of mine!

Tuesday’s stops:

May 30:

LoveBytes Reviews: Love Letters Between the Characters (Guest Post)

Unquietly Me (Excerpt)

On Top Down Under

MMGoodBookReviews: 5 Fun Facts about the book (Guest Post)

May 31:

The Novel Approach Reviews: The Making of a Great Villain (Guest Post)

Erotica For All

The Day Before You Came

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Enjoy all the extras, and I hope you enjoy the book! Also, TODAY is the LAST day that you can buy Book 1 of the Oddities series, Murder Once Seen for ONLY 99 CENTS!  Get it on Riptide.

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