I need to start making an effort with this blog! First thing's first:
It received a great review from Jesse Wave
here, and the good folks over at Dear Author
included it in the September Recommended Reads
The awesome Sarah Frantz reviewed The Subtle Build of Perfection here at Dear Author
I'm now on Twitter! I'm more likely to update that. I can handle 140 characters. Follow me here
And finally, my next novella is The Road to You
, a M/M erotic romance about two guys on a -- you guessed it -- road trip, and it's coming soon from Loose Id!
If you'll permit me a minute or two to get soppy:
The 16th of May (Sunday) is a very special anniversary for me. On May 16, 2009, I exchanged my first email with a lady I met on a writing forum. I'd posted a request for a writing partner/beta reader, and a while later I received a private message from this lady who, as it turned out, was from Dublin (I'm in Ireland, btw). We exchanged PMs and emails back and forth for the evening, promising to get in touch via MSN over the next few days.
Little did I know it would be the start of the greatest, most supportive friendship I've ever had.
I can't even begin to explain the value of a good writing partner -- someone who holds your hand, lifts your spirits, kicks your butt and cheerleads the crap out of your achievements. A true writing partner is just that -- a partner. She will not write the book for you, and neither will she walk on egg shells to protect your ego, but she's there for you every step of the way.
When that writing partner steps up and becomes a friend, then you've hit upon something special.
Me? I won the lottery.
Erica, the lady I met online on May 16 last year, is now one of the very few people in my life I could never, ever be without. Within weeks of knowing each other, we were chatting away every single night as if we'd known each other forever, and within months we'd created a friendship so strong, we panic when we know one of us won't be able to get online for a few days! Co-dependant? Yes. We don't see each other in person very often, because we live hours apart and we both have commitments that stop us from finding a decent amount of time to spend on a proper visit, but it hasn't prevented us from developing this very real, and very close friendship.
She's the first person who hears all my news, and the first person I think to talk to whenever something goes wrong or very right. There isn't a thing about my life she doesn't know, understand and support. She is, quite frankly, my lifeline. I have very little family left -- at least those I can count on -- and other than my partner and child, she's it. Without her, I certainly wouldn't have been published this year -- wouldn't have found the courage or the motivation or the determination to put myself out there.
Without writing, I wouldn't have found Erica. Without Erica, I wouldn't have done anything with my writing.
This past year, with everything I've achieved, has been amazing. And Erica's been there through it all, from the start, like the very best friend I could hope for.
And now she's going to kill me for writing this... :D
Other news? I don't really have any, other than waiting on the edits for Resistance. I've been out of the country, unable to get much done, but now I'm back and it's all systems go. I need to find my routine again, but I have that itch to get going, to produce something, and I'm looking forward to seeing what the next few weeks will bring.
Gave myself a heart attack this morning. I woke up to an email from one of my favourite publishers -- the editor expressing interest in a manuscript I recently sold to Loose Id. I responded with an apology, mentioning that I'd heard nothing but good things about "publisher name" and expressing my own interest in possibly submitting future works to them. All good stuff. Then, when staring at my inbox while trying to figure out if I wanted to start my writing for the day or procrastinate by emailing a few friends, I noticed that the email conversation I'd had with said publisher was listed under a different publisher's name -- one who had me offered a contract a week or so ago. Gasp! I'd mentioned the publisher's name in the email, only to now discover I'd either a) emailed the wrong people back, or b) put the wrong publisher's name in the email! Faceplant.
Then I realised, of course, that Gmail groups all similar conversations together, and that I'd done nothing wrong after all. Lesson of the day? Don't attempt professional correspondence before my morning tea, because it will inevitably lead to confusion and panic and painful faceplanting. Bloody Gmail.
I'm going out of the country on Sunday for ten days, and I plan to have a full, submission-ready draft of my new M/M novel completed by the time I return. Really. Hopefully. Maybe? Fortunately I'll still have normal internet access while I'm away (the in-laws have indeed embraced the wireless way of life), so I'll be able to keep up with my obligations and whatnot. And burn loads of time chatting on MSN, not getting anything written at all... No, I'll finish it. I will! I have a goal, you see. Four M/M romances in 2010. Two down, two to go...
Hello! I've had a lot going on, but nothing I can really talk about yet. I finally finished a book I've been working on since last year, off and on. It's not erotic romance (it's YA), so I won't talk about it on this blog, but it was such a relief to finally write those two words all writers love. I'm going to put it aside for a while before starting the edits. I need the space. But, still. Yay!
I'm making good progress with the new M/M erotic romance, thanks to the advice of an acquaintance. She explained her method to me, how she manages to write so much in such a short amount of time, and I thought I would give it a go. So far it seems to be working out. I'm writing a lot more in a day than I used to, so happy days. Thanks, Lori!
On top of that, I've been making some extra money with DS. Anything to help pay the rent, right? And I've also agreed to write for an Irish lit magazine (a monthly feature) so that should be fun. What else? I think that's all I can really mention right now.
24 hours have passed, so it's time to take down the snippet. Stay tuned for more!
(Almost forgot! Check out my Guest Post over at Writer Revealed
: Why I Write Erotic Romance.)
Okay. There's no hiding it. I suck hardcore at keeping a blog updated. I have no idea why I find it so difficult to keep a regular posting schedule -- it's just there always seems to be other things to do! Bah.
Anyway, onto some updates.
Have you ever had the feeling that you're writing some of your best work? I searched and searched for a new M/M novel-length idea that excited me enough to light that fire in me, the kind of passion that kept me up until 3am and had me scribbling down plot notes when I'm cooking, showering, negotiating my way across busy roads... Alas, I was running dry. So I called upon my writing partner/best friend and I said, "Writing partner! I fail!" And she promptly spewed out all manner of fabulous ideas, which is possibly why I love her so. But one idea she suggested was something very similar to an idea I had already been entertaining, and between the two of us we came up with the Epic Idea of all Ideas. It's awesome, and I'm mega-excited, and I've spent the past week banging out an outline and layering on the conflict and plot and angst and smexytimes. The snatches of scenes I've written really do feel like my best work, which pleases me muchly! I think it's going to be a huge book, though. Too long. So I will write it and consider it and see what I can cut, but I'm just going to have fun until then!
I adore this feeling.
Speaking of good feelings, I received three offers from different publishers after I signed with Loose Id! I have no regrets at all, but it's such an awesome feeling knowing it wasn't a fluke -- that the book is good enough to gain multiple offers. :D :D
In other news, a novella I thought was complete is getting the re-write treatment. A read-through made me realise I needed to go deeper into the POV. It's one of those intimate stories, where the character's feelings move the story along just as much as the action. The story feels very personal and I don't think I did it justice the first time around, so time for take two!
What else? I think that's it for now. Coming up: A rant on the lack of realistic sex and emotion in contemporary M/M erotica. I really need to say something about it, but I need to organise my thoughts first. That's not to say I haven't read some fantastic M/M, because I have -- I wouldn't be writing it if I didn't have faith in the market and genre. But I seem to have had a run of bad luck recently with the books I've chosen to read and I feel as though some people aren't taking enough care in making gay sex -- or the feelings related to homosexuality -- realistic. It's all a bit too... you know. Fantasy. But enough of that for now! Later.
I have had the busiest weekend of my life. Seriously. A run-down:
Book #1 released. YAY! Announcements and promo commence.
Book #2 sold. YAY! Contracts and form reviewing/signage begins.
Book #3 grows legs. YAY! Thousands of words pour onto the page.
I wrote an M/M erotic short story. Subbing soonish.
I outlined an idea for an M/M erotic romance novella. Writing soonish.
Six articles written.
Lots of communication with the editor of my new offline writing gig regarding the work I will be doing now he's trusted me with the majority of his magazine. (Long sentences, FTL.)
New Super Secret Epic Project of Awesomeness with co-creator. This will be a Brilliant Thing! Time spent this weekend researching and brainstorming.
Outlined a guest blog a very lovely lady asked me to do.
Outlined two long articles I plan to write next week.
All of this in 2.5 days. *wipes brow*
I promise a proper post tomorrow, wherein I might actually talk about insightful things. Let's all pretend I haven't totally failed with my vow to update this blog every day... I'm blogging way more than I used to, though. Not a total fail!
Connor Morgan, bored in his job at the video store, gets a heart-stopping distraction when gorgeous, green-eyed Dane Masters walks in. But while the universe is happy to give Connor and Dane an instant connection neither of them can ignore, it's not quite as willing to let them get together...
"The Subtle Build of Perfection" is a contemporary M/M erotic/romantic comedy novella. Available here from Cobblestone Press!
EXCITING! And I'm also ridiculously nervous. :/ Fingers crossed it does all right! Go and buy it! Let me know what you think!
In other news, Loose Id offered me a contract for "Resistance" -- my 45k M/M erotic romance. YAY! More details of that to come after I've signed and sent.
And finally, I had a meeting today with the owner of my region's scene magazine (entertainment and culture), during which he asked me to be the new copy editor, features writer, and entertainment reviewer! Three jobs rolled into one! It'll be a nice little bonus in my income each month, and it's something I enjoy, so happy days!
I think I've finally got the Internet issues under control. This past week has been a nightmare--one minute I'd have a connection, and I'd get involved in something, then I'd click on a link and, bam, no more connection. I don't know if it was a glitch in my computer or in my ISP, but it seems to be sorted now. I do, for now, have a full connection. We'll see how it goes.
Aside from that, I've had a busy week. My freelancing career kicked off all of a sudden, and now I'm spending a large portion of my time writing articles and the like. On top of this, my other half sent me a text today simply stating, "Got you the job of editing the county's monthly magazine." o.0 I won't know the details of that until he gets home, but I'm cautiously optimistic. He has the most random connections...
I've also been busy with the non-erotica side of my fiction writing life. My beta-reader is coming to stay next week and I promised her I'd have the first draft ready for her by then, so she may take home a hard copy and have fun/tear out her hair with the task of editing old-school, a la red pen.
In terms of erotic romance, I'm on the query train again. Two editors have my full, and a few more have sample chapters. It's only been a week so far, so we'll see. Fingers crossed! I've been spending some time thinking about my next project. "Love in a Cubicle" doesn't want to co-operate--it's determined to be an angst-fest, and I'm not in the mood for that right now. I want to write something light-hearted, dammit!
So, yes. Busy, busy. I've even set up a new "office area" in a different room, because writing in the front room wasn't working out. Too many distractions and people not knowing how to be quiet... Here's to a new wave of productivity!
I'm having epic computer/Internet problems at the moment. I'll have a proper update for you once I get things sorted. I think a change in ISP is in order...
I spent the majority of my spare time this weekend querying -- which is, as you all know, a nerve-wracking thing at the best of times. I've been ill over the weekend, headaches and lady aches and whatnot, which amplified my oh-my-god-what-if-they-hate-it feeling every time I hit send. But it had to be done. There's no use letting the manuscript gather dust on my computer. It's finished, edited, and as ready as it'll ever be without the opinion of an editor. I only queried a handful of publishers for the first round -- five, I think -- just to test the waters, and I got a full request this afternoon, so here's hoping!
There's a good thing about receiving a full (aside from the obvious), even if the story is ultimately rejected. It means the editor read a few thousand words of your writing, plus the synopsis detailing the whole story, and wanted to see more -- so if nothing else, the editor likes the concept and your writing, even if the story as a whole didn't click with him/her. It's a positive thing, because you then know you've created something workable -- whatever's wrong with the story can be fixed. It's not your writing or your idea the editor doesn't like -- it's something to do with the content or the execution. That's something we can deal with. Um. I had a point somewhere in here, but I lost it...
In other news, I'm 10k into the latest WIP with another idea whining for attention. This second idea excites me more than the first, but it'll have to wait. In the words of every gameshow host ever: "I've started so I'll finish..."