I’m bored. You’re bored. Let’s give some shit away!
I’m bored. You’re bored. Let’s give some shit away!
Since it’s almost time for all the holiday hoopla, I thought I’d give you a little snippet of what I’m working on right now, Residual Magic. I wish I could say that it was because I was being nice but you know better than that. Its because I’m tired from all the baking, shopping, wrapping, and cleaning. I’ve got nothing else to share. So, with no further ado, here’s your snippet:
This is an unedited excerpt. READ AT YOUR OWN RISK!
“What two cents? I have no money,” Wynne replied, confused and a part of me smiled to myself. Having been stuck in a vast wasteland of desert and mirrors the succubus-witch had dubbed the in-between for more than a millennium, sometimes Wynne’s understanding of colloquialisms wasn’t up to scratch. “Either way, it doesn’t change the fact that you are young and stupid. How many times have you cried over that boy? Too many to count by my opinion.” She huffed at me as if I was wasting her time. All she had was time. Plus, I was pretty sure she secretly loved it. I’d come to understand that Wynne liked to be needed. Who didn’t though? That was the point, wasn’t it? I wanted to be wanted and needed and it didn’t seem like Ev wanted or needed me that badly. A thought suddenly occurred to me. Maybe Tag did.
“Well, you’ll be glad to know that I have a date tonight,” I said, my chin high. When she stared at me, the words clearly not registering in her mind I added, “I’m going to be spending time with someone tonight . . . a man.”
“The boy finally became a man,” she grumbled and this time I wasn’t so sure she’d intended for me to hear her.
“Ev?” I asked, confused but continued on, “No, Tag. I’m going to dinner with Tag.”
“The soul stealer?” she asked and I could hear the surprise and disgust in her voice. I could almost see her bright blue eyes the size of saucers in astonishment.
“Wynne,” I sighed. “Red heads don’t steal souls. They just don’t. But you know who does?” I asked and she was quiet for a moment, waiting. “Succubi. Succubi steal souls and that’s you.” When she didn’t respond – because I had her on that one – I said, “Tag is a nice guy. He’s steady. And he wants me.”
“Ahh,” she responded in a way that made my blood boil, as if she saw everything and I clearly saw nothing.
“Ahh? What does ahhh mean?” I hissed, angry now. It felt good to be angry and show it. Turns out, I’d been angry for a while.
“Nothing,” she clipped, pleased with herself. “Just . . . ahh. Have fun on your . . . date,” she said with a snide lilt. And in the blink of an eye, she was gone, retreating back into her amulet to let me stew. I hated when she did that. She put just enough doubt in my head to make me second guess everything. Wynne was just mean.
“I will!” I snapped at her, knowing full well she wasn’t listening. I plopped down on my bed and sighed. I would have a good time with Tag. I always had a good time with Tag. We were friends and I wouldn’t let Wynne’s nagging doubts cast a shadow on our date. This wouldn’t be weird at all.
This month is Nanowrimo. For those of you who have no idea what the fuck I’m talking about, don’t worry, you’re not alone. There are a lot of people that have never heard of this.
Nanowrimo stands for National Novel Writing Month. There is a website that engages the writing community to write 50,000 words in a single month: nanowrimo.org. This is supposed to be a way to give a writer a swift kick in the ass and get you back into gear. Ultimately, getting words on the page.
A lot of people think they have to be pretty words. Incorrect! They just have to be words that make sense. You can always go back and make them pretty. Fixing and editing, at least for me, is way easier than staring at a blank page.
Almost every year, I sit down and log in. I set my project – which for me has been four different books between 2011-2019. You can see by the number of projects as compared to the number of years how successful I’ve been.
The first, I finished but it wasn’t very good. So, there it sits in my dropbox, waiting for me to revisit and rework.
The second, was never finished. Again, still waiting on me to finish.
The third was Hereditary Magic. I FINISHED IT. And, like 10 of you read it, so there’s that.
The fourth is Residual Magic…here’s hoping. I’ll be honest though, I’m already behind in writing this one and nanowrimo was my plan to get back on track. For the first few days, usually, I’m good. Then life and work gets in the way. This year was no exception. Listen, I’m fucking busy.
Here are my stats from nanowrimos of years past:
2011 – 50,116/50,000 – Yay! This is me winning nanowrimo
2012 – Sike, I didn’t participate
2013 – 18,864/50,000 – EPIC FAIL!
2014 – Bahahaha!
2015 – Scarlett was like 6 months old. Nothing got done other than working, feeding, and sleeping. NOTHING. AT. ALL.
2016 – okay, this is it. This is the year I’m back to writing 3 books a year. 4,230/50,000 Okay, not so much.
2017 – 11,229/50,000 – I’m starting to see a pattern. However, this one was actually Hereditary Magic. I did eventually finish it and publish it, just not in this time frame.
2018 – Bahahahaaha again. Actually, I think I forgot.
2019 – Here we go. I’m off to a bangin’ start… 1,604/50,000 in SEVEN DAYS.
I should be putting words down on the page right now. Instead, I’m writing this blog because in seminar after seminar, they keep telling us that consistency and content are important to readers. Can I count these words toward nanowrimo? That would be cheating…I guess.
I finally got my preliminary scores back for Hereditary Magic from the Rita contest.
Below please find the scores for your entry, Hereditary Magic Blood and Bone Legacy, in the preliminary round in the 2019 RITA® Contest.
|Paranormal Romance||1|| |
|Does the entry contain a central love story?||Yes||Yes||No||No||Yes|
|Is the resolution of the romance emotionally satisfying and optimistic?||No||No||No||No||Yes|
|Does the entry fall within the category description?||Yes||No||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Did Not Finish (DNF) Reason (craft or grammar). The field will be blank if the judge did not select DNF.|
Final Score: 7.5
Final Scores are calculated by dropping the high and low scores and averaging the three remaining scores.
If there are 3 negative responses to any one question, the entry is disqualified.
You may refer to the following information in order to determine the ranking of your score.
For the Paranormal Romance category:
Top quarter; final scores equal to or greater than 8.3
Second quarter; final scores from 8.26 to 7.83
Lower half; final scores equal to or less than 7.8
Let’s talk about these and my own experiences with the Rita entries for a moment. As you can see from the underlined contingency above, Hereditary Magic was disqualified for having 3 “No” responses in a single category. The category question was Is the resolution of the romance emotionally satisfying and optimistic? The quick answer to that is of course not. It’s a series and if you solve the central romance in the first book, the series is basically over. There has to be some conflict and growth. Otherwise, THERE’S NO POINT.
There was one judge, #2, who actually got the book. And he/she is right. This book doesn’t fall within in the strict category of paranormal romance. None of my books do. That’s part of the problem.
I don’t write romance.
I write genre fiction that doesn’t subscribe to the regimented format of romance. I don’t have a happy ending at the end of each book. I don’t have the romance as the focal point in each book. My romantic entanglements are not always resolved at the end of each book. That’s part and parcel of writing series.
As a judge this year in the Rita contest, I find it disheartening to learn Hereditary Magic was disqualified while more than half of the entries I was given to judge were subpar, not just in their character development but in grammar and writing style.
Don’t get me wrong. I understand that I’m no Margaret Atwood. I am very cognizant of how minuscule i am in the publishing world and even more so about how niche my genre is within that publishing world. However, I can construct a damned sentence properly…most of the time.
So, this is what it has all come down to…
I’ve been a member of Romance Writers of America now for 10 years and each year I renew my membership with reticence. What is RWA and the affiliated chapter memberships providing me? Honestly, not a whole lot at this point.
This year I paid my $99 membership fee in August to maintain the other chapter memberships through December. It will be my last year. Each year, I feel more and more marginalized in an organization where I clearly don’t fit in.
I have plenty of romance writer friends that get a ton of benefit from their memberships, and that works for them. I’m not one of them. And that’s okay. I just can’t seem to justify sinking money back into an organization that isn’t beneficial to me and my writing career. Not anymore.
This isn’t a condemnation of RWA or their contests. They do a lot of good for quite a few people. I’m just not one of them. I think that saying goodbye may be the best option for me. I have made many great friends in this organization and relish those friendships and support I have found in their company. But I must say goodbye to the organization that brought us together.
Farewell, RWA. It’s been nice knowing you.
I’m testing out a new Advanced Reader Copy platform. In honor of that, i’m posting Hereditary Magic for 10 lucky readers. The only requirement is that you post a review on Amazon, Goodreads, Barnes & Noble, and/or Bookbub by August 1st.
There are 10 available copies and you can access your copy here:
If you get my newsletter, then you saw this a month ago. Plus, yesterday, you got a free snippet. That’s one of the benefits of being on my newsletter mailing list. So there!
I’m currently working on the first round edits prior to release. We’ll go through two more rounds of this before book birthday. Honestly, I could keep going back and forth forever, changing, fixing, altering, but at some point you have to let it go.
Without further ado. Hereditary Magic will be released on 10/17/2018!
Also, I still can’t figure out how to do any of this scheduling posts/newsletters right. I’m on my own newsletter so I know it went out. Did I get it yesterday? No. But people opened it (or so the report says), so it must have gone out. *sigh* I’m smarter than this. I promise.
Because I write series books, it’s very important that I can keep facts straight;descriptions (which I forget), magical items (which I make up, sooo, that can be hard to remember), and random shit I include that does’t seem important at the time and turns out to be pivotal. Continue reading Organizational Aids