Challenge Check-In, Day #2

I missed my Day #1 check-in, but I didn’t miss my goal. Two days so far, and I’m almost five chapters in to a massive rewrite. Dialogue is taking on some snappier qualities, characters are fleshing out more fully… so far, so good!

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A New Writing Challenge

Today, I’m switching gears.

It’s been a ridiculously long time since I’ve blogged here with any regularity. I didn’t die or fall off the face of the earth or anything. Instead, I’ve been Ghosting. Literally. I’ve been doing my time in the word mines, like Chuck Wendig would say.

In the time since I’ve been gone (from here, anyway), I’ve written six novellas and four novels. Only bad thing? My name wasn’t on nary a one.

I’ve got some great experience under my belt. Plotting, working on a schedule, making bank and seeing how much this whole writing thing really can pay. Working with an editorial team (omg I miss that already) and crafting top-notch work.

No regerts, man.

Now? Because of some crazy life interruptions, I’m switching gears. Downshifting, you might say. I’m happy to admit, though, I went out on top. Writing 80K words per month, watching the high-ranking Amazon releases and awesome reviews… I was running at a breakneck pace and threw a shoe.

It’s time to return to my writer roots.

Pick up the blog again.

Pull out my old MSs and dust off my half-finished novels. The ones with my name on them.

Work on my own stuff.

Throw my hat in the pitching and self-publishing arenas again.

I’m kicking off a challenge today: writing on ONE project, every night, for the next 30 days. One hour of editing/rewriting, or 1,000 new words, if it’s a fresh project.

I had a series started a few years back: The Briarfield Brides. Book #1 did pretty well in a Harlequin contest and is finished– I just set it aside and moved on when the line closed down, instead of submitting it under another imprint, as was suggested to me by an editor. I’m picking it back up, reworking it to strengthen the conflict, and tossing it back into the submission process. Then, I’ll write the already-outlined next two books in the series.

I’m focusing on one project at a time, for 30 days at a time, with nightly check-ins for accountability. So: Day #1 is tomorrow.

Do you want to join me? Have any #writergoals you’re focusing on right now? I’d love to hear them!

The Revolt of Dorothy #FlashFiction

So, I wrote another flash fiction, this one 1,000 words. Also not romance.

It’s all Chuck Wendig‘s fault.

The Revolt of Dorothy

5:36 PM

Rubber-soled shoes squeaked outside of my room and I stuffed the knife under my pillow, flopping backward and letting my mouth hang open slightly. I focused on my breathing—in and out, slowly, carefully—as the door opened. From somewhere down the hall came a pitiable moan. There was a pause—in, out, slowly, carefully, breathe Dorothy—and then the hated reek reek reek of the rubber-soled shoes moved purposely toward my bed.

“Dorothy, dear. Open your eyes. It’s time for your medicine.”

The sweet sounding words came with a pinch to the sensitive skin on the inside of my upper arm, swift and vicious as a wasp sting.

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“You know what’s weird? I think the universe doesn’t want me to wear jeggings.”

Things husbands and wives really talk about. #ConversationswithZack  

Cracked House #FlashFiction

So, I haven’t been writing so much lately. I’ve gotten stuck on the edits for Peace, Love and Murder, and the creative gears in my brain have been all gunked up with work stuff and school stuff and stuff stuff, but I caught a Wendig post on Friday–a flash fiction challenge.

Sure. Like I’ve got time to write a short story, Chuck. I haven’t done that since high school.

Except, wait, I accepted the challenge and turned a pretty cool story out of it. (FYI, there’s a couple swears and some creepy stuff, if you’re not into that. This ain’t a romance, folks.)

Cracked House

The cold bit at Damon’s nose as soon as he opened the door, and he tugged his scarf up. The wool itched and smelled like peanut butter and cigarette smoke.

“Come on, Curtis.”

Damon jerked his little brother’s arm and Curtis yelped. “Tee, Damon hurt my arm!”

“Gone, now. Get to school.” The volume went up louder on the TV, and a racking cough echoed out from the living room. “You lettin’ the cold air in!”

Damon automatically steered Curtis around the loose board three steps down. He was a little shit, but that didn’t mean Damon wanted to see him trip down the rickety staircase of their second-story apartment.

The wind picked up as they trudged down the sidewalk, bringing with it a crumpled McDonald’s bag, a couple of dead leaves and a condom wrapper that gleefully cartwheeled past them.

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IM’ing with The Husband

Me: I’m just cheesing you.
Zack: I know, I’m just being a block head.
Hehe.
Cheese joke.
Me: HA, I get it. Havarti to understand at first.
Zack: You feta believe it.
Me: I see what you did Gruyere.
Zack: Okay, I think we’re Gouda here.
Me: Time to Swiss subjects?
Zack: Anything’s cheddar than this.
Me: Okay, that’ll brie the end of it then.
Zack: Yeah, it’s making me bleu.
Me: Munster be you don’t like puns.
Zack: I beg your Parmesan?
Me: There’s Stilton of other things to talk about, you know.
Me: Do you need me to goat to the store after work?
Zack: Asiago if you need me to.
Me: Lol, okay, i’m fresco out. You win.
Zack: Going to Limburger your way out huh?
Me: Farmer better things to do.
Zack: I love cheese.
Me: Me, too.