The Eagle is Landing

This morning, the email came. The email. There are, actually, several the emails that happen in a writer’s life in publishing today, but this one very much gets a the status, because this is the last pass for any changes for Chasing Prince Charming. Once Melva and I give our okays at the author portal, we will have pulled the trigger, and put our first “baby” together on the metaphorical school bus, the better to tend to our current infant, Drama King, as well as our individual efforts, in genres as diverse as memoir, historical romance, and cozy romantic suspense. (The middle one is mine. I do have some YA ideas, but I am juggling enough chainsaws at present, but don’t quote me.)

There is also the website I’m wrangling for my co-written books, which is a different level of figuring thigs out from keeping a site that is mostly a blog. There are two author bios to put up there, two backlists, and I’m going to have to work on that whole regained rights issue, for two historical romances that are going to need a certain amount of work, because A) I wrote them a long, long time ago (even though it feels like only yesterday) and B) both I and the market have changed.

What those changes would be…ehhh, I don’t know. That would require looking at the manuscripts first, and that is not a task for me for today. Today is for booting Her Last First Kiss, and getting Bern and Ruby one step closer to The End of draft number two. Then it’s time to bundle them off on the bus, as well. While I like to think that I have learned a thing or two about the raising of historical heroes and heroines since the day I chair-danced and scared the cat (Olivia, our cat at the time, took it in stride, actually) when a publisher actually wanted to buy My Outcast Heart, I also hope that readers who eventually pick up Her Last First Kiss and all the historical romance novels I write and put out there after (of which I plan many) will find the same spark that they found in those earlier works.

The dry spell, as soon as we get the official release date for Chasing Prince Charming, will be officially over. I could say that it officially ended the day Melva and I got the first “the” email from The Wild Rose Press, or the day we had a second publisher also make an offer on the same work, and we had to make a decision. I could say it ended when Z Publishing sent me an email, the day after we moved out of our former apartment, a the email I answered from a motel bed, Skye, our cat at the time, beneath it, asking if I would be interested in submitting to two of their anthologies. I was still coming down from a massive anxiety attack, I’d exerted myself physically so much the day before, that my legs wouldn’t move, and bed was my only option. I can easily call that a low point, and then there was a the email. I said yes. This year, they asked again, and, this time, from a comfortable apartment (with Sebastian, Cat Regent) I said yes again.

That yes put me into new waters, s my binder for working on Plunder‘s outline, expanding “The Fox and the Lily” to not only a full historical romance novel, but my first intentional trilogy, rescuing the second book, which I had thought would be the first and only, from the metaphorical sandbar where it had been stranded for years I refuse to count. Plunder is first, with Cornelis and Lydia, then Abandon, with Alec and Tamsen, annnnd I have no idea what I am going to call the third one, but I want it to have a one word title that fits in with pirates and/or privateers, and either hero or heroine (I don’t know which one yet) will be the grandchild of Cornelis and Lydia, the child of Alec and Tamsen.

I’m not worried. All of that stuff will come. If I have learned one thing over the last few years, it is that creativity is a bottomless resource. There will always be more. There will be more stories, there will be more sales, there will (or can be) more genres. There will be more characters. There will be more stories. There will be more. I want to make a sign of that, perhaps hire someone to cross stitch. There will be more.

Typing With Stuffed Paws: Changey Changey Change Change Edition

Greetings, foolish mortals. Sebastian Thunderpaws Hart-Bowling coming at you, with all the stuff from the week that was, and then some. As the erratic blog posting we’ve seen lately can attest, Writer Chick is spread kind of thin these days, but things are cool. I do not only say that because I am currently in front of the box fan, but I can’t deny that’s part of it.

The biggest domestic tornado is that one of Other Chick’s human relatives went to Rainbow Bridge. Dude is about to start new employment adventures, including what the humans call “continuing education.” Writer Chick has been not so much in the sleeping department, which has to be addressed, but the upside to that is that she has been listening to a lot of romance writing podcasts, which is a whole other story. She’ll talk about that later

The new worktable is working pretty darned well, and gives Writer Chick both physical and mental space to spread out and get where she’s going. This past week, she’s been focused on the final-final-final galley of Chasing Prince Charming, as is Other Writer Chick, and getting up to speed on the writing schedule for both Drama King and Her Last First Kiss.

The big-big news, and I probably should have led with this, is that the wait for “The Fox and the Lily” is over. America’s Emerging Literary Fiction Writers: Connecticut, New York, and Pennsylvania edition is now available. Click on the caption in the above picture to grab a copy for your very own.

This was also the week that Writer Chick finally got it that Camp NaNo is in July, not June. She is slightly disgruntled about that, because she was all ready to roll, and may do so anyway, then do it again on the “official” run in July. Who can tell at this stage of the game, but she is motivated to plot out all of Cornelis and Lydia’s story, and get that ball rolling. This very much fits with her plan to step it up in the writing game, and smush that self doubt. Self doubt is the enemy of many a writer, and Writer Chick is pretty well sick of it by now. We will see how that goes.

The other thing Writer Chick has been doing is setting up her and Other Writer Chick’s new website, (link to come, when there is something to link to) which is a whole new learning curve, but she’s having a good time figuring things out. Writer Chick always did like the whole run off the dock, cannonball into the water, and then splash around until she comes up with a plan kind of thing. This very much fits into that, and starting new ventures does put a spring in her metaphorical step.

Not that Writer Chick is neglecting her regular duties. She was, as usual, at Buried Under Romance, this past week, This time, she’s sharing five books she wants to reread, ASAP. Which one do you think she should read? Pop on over to the link below, to find out, and, if the spirit moves, weigh in; you’re never too late.

Writer Chick is back at her Goodreads Challenge, and to posting reviews. Right now, she is only four books behind schedule, with thirty-three books read, out of ninety-five. That puts her at thirty-five percent of the way to her goal. This, she considers a challenge she can crush. She even has a plan of how she can not only get current on that reading schedule, but move ahead of it.

If you know Writer Chick at all, you know she loves to plan, and the current situations most assuredly call for a lot of planning. This is completely fine by her, and quite appropriate for the time of year when things are blooming, blossoming, and being born. Whatever she gets up to, rest assured I will be here to keep you up to date on all the stuff.

Peace out,

On the Horizon

Happy May, my liebchens. It’s Monday’s post on Wednesday, which is also conveniently time for a new planning post, which is how I set up the picture, but then I checked my email, and…drumroll please…”The Fox and the Lily” is happening, specifically in the literary anthology of Z Publishing’s 2019 literary fiction anthology. I submitted “The Fox and the Lily” as historical fiction (spoiler: it’s a romance) with the knowledge that there might not be a historical fiction anthology, per se, and my story might end up somewhere else. Which it did.. This is the first meeting of Dutch pirate, Cornelis Van Zandt, and English lady, Lydia Stoke, and the fateful encounter that changes both of their lives forever.

Cornelis and Lydia first showed up when I started on their daughter, Tamsen’s, story, and promptly embarked upon a campaign to steal every darned scene in which at least one of them appeared. A wise writer would take this as a sign that Cornelis and Lydia’s book needs to come first, but 1) I am me, 2) I was determined to make Abandon, Tamsen’s story (also Alec, who goes from Cornelis’ protege to a man on a mission. A mission to kill Cornelis, because of really good reasons. All of this is based upon me knowing exactly when and how Alec and Tamsen fall in love. For a historical romance, that is kind of important.

Every time, though, every darned time, the one thing that shifted me from staring at the screen, making a sound that can best be approximated as “uhhhhhh,” was dipping back into Cornelis and Lydia, who are clearly playing a long game on the way to their HEA. It’s a lot of things that I super crazy love: the seventeenth century, pirates, gutsy heroine, charming hero (Cornelis is a charm bomb) and the teeny problem of Lydia being actually married to somebody else at the time when they meet. It’s not insta-love, but they do have a something that sparks, and they both want to do the right thing, but Lydia[s husband has true villain potential, and yeah, I think I am going to have to write the whole book now, which is fine by me. I kind of like Plunder, if I want to stick with one-word titles.

When I set up my current blog notebook (because there is a new line of Exceed notebooks, which I very much want to try, but can’t justify until I fill the OG version I already have, sooo….) I jotted down that, if I’m going to write two pirate books, I may as well write three pirate books, and I am super curious to see how Tamsen and Alec’s kids turn out, not to mention this will allow me to have Grandpa Cornelis and Grandma Lydia. Generational series are my very, very favorite kind, and having a trilogy follow grandparent, parent, and then child, is something I have wanted to do for a very long time. Maybe that time is now.

Okay, not now-now, but soon. Melva and I are awaiting news of the release date for Chasing Prince Charming, while we are writing our way through the first draft of Drama King, and I am working my way toward the second draft for Her Last First Kiss. Add to that the fact that I now have three, count them, three, historical romances that are complete (A Heart Most Errant still needs some editing, so two and three quarters, really) and in need of homes. This is not a place where I expected to be, but I can roll with it.

This is where being a planner could work strongly in my favor. Schedules, goals, etc, I love all of that stuff, almost as much as I love writing, and both things require me to use pens and paper, so one already gives me the tools to do the other. Right now, I am rambling, and I know I am rambling, because A) I did not sleep last night (having an air mattress pop while one is sleeping on it is exactly as fun and disorienting as it sounds) and B) I am giddy from the news that Cornelis and Lydia are about to go out into the world.

My notes had some additional rambling about my summer reading plans, but then I opened my email, so that will be another post. Stay tuned, but, for now, there is a pirate ship on the horizon, and I had best be there to meet it. Maybe June’s Camp NaNoWriMo might be fun.