So Much Stuff!

I hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving (if they observed that holiday), and are now having just as lovely a weekend, whether shopping or hiding from the crowds. No need to go out for any of these things I’m about to share with you, though!

  1. Look to the sidebar on the right and you’ll see that there is a Goodreads giveaway going on for Manifesting Destiny. I’m giving away three signed paperback copies, and each will also come with a bookmark and temporary tattoo. Giveaway runs through December 9.
  2. For the holidays, you can now pick up my Sherlock Holmes stories, The K-Pro, and my anthology The World Ends at Five for 99 cents each on Amazon! If you like supporting indie businesses, please consider also supporting indie authors!
  3. I discuss literary fiction on Jay Lemming’s site today. I consider The Fall and Rise of Peter Stoller to be literary because of the way it’s written. What do you think? How do you define literary fiction, and is it a dying genre or merely exclusive (and exclusionary)? Swing by to see what I have to say about it!

That’s all the news that is news for the moment. I’m closing in on finishing Brynnde, too. Can’t wait to present her to you!

Happy Holiday Season!

WIP Wednesday

I’m reluctant to give away any more of The Great Divide, which is the sequel to Manifesting Destiny. So I’ll post a bit more of my Regency romance Brynnde here instead. It’s a dinner scene. Brynnde is visiting Lowlea, home of her friend Violet Crabbage. They’ve sent to the Darleys to see if Julia and Eleanor can also visit. Brynnde had been engaged to Julia and Eleanor’s older brother Garrick and is now ostensibly recovering from a broken heart when that engagement was forced to end due to some questionable behavior on the part of their other brother Graeme. In truth, Garrick was only doing Brynnde a favor by asking her to marry him and so though Brynnde is disappointed she is not heartbroken. What I particularly enjoy in this scene is Sir Everret’s attempts to eat his dinner.

“Oh!” yelped Lady Crabbage then, causing everyone at the table to jump. Sir Everret’s gravy went flying, but his wife took no notice. “The Darley girls have written you, Violet. I meant to give you the letter earlier but then you each were resting. Remind me, and I’ll give it you after dinner.” She wriggled in her seat like a giddy schoolgirl or, Brynnde thought, perhaps more like a fat hen settling on her eggs. The napkin returned to Brynnde’s mouth.

Again, Lady Crabbage took it as a sign. “Should I not have mentioned them? Of course I shouldn’t have! Oh, Brynnde, do please forgive me! I should have given Violet the letter in private. They are assuredly the last people you want to hear about, the last name you want to hear uttered—”

“It’s all right, Mama,” Violet said. “Brynnde and Julia and Eleanor have no ill feelings between them.”

“Actually,” Brynnde added, “I miss them terribly. We’d become very good friends.”

Lady Crabbage changed direction without misstep. “And so of course you’re so sad to hear their names spoken aloud! I am sorry, my dear, really I am. I’ve only added to your sorrow.”

“I’ve invited them to visit,” Violet went on. Brynnde marveled at her friend’s patience but supposed it came from a lifetime of practice.

“It would very much delight me to see them,” said Brynnde, “if it doesn’t trouble you too much to have them.” She imitated Tessa’s wide-eyed, plaintive look, the one that Papa could not resist.

“Of course not!” crowed Lady Crabbage, and this time Sir Everret’s knife went wide. He sighed and persevered, not allowing his wife nor his meat to best him, for which Brynnde silently applauded him.

WIP Wednesday

From my Regency romance Brynnde:

“Maman wants me to marry Mr. Dallweather,” said Brynnde with a quick look at Violet.

Julia noticed and gave Violet a quick, speculative look as well before returning her attention to Brynnde. “But you would rather not.” It was a statement, not a question.

“He is very kind, but we have nothing in common,” Brynnde said. “He likes dogs but does not keep horses—”

“He would let you keep horses, though,” Julia posited.

“I don’t know,” Brynnde admitted. “I suppose. He’s much older—”

“Steady, then,” said Julia. “Unlikely to wander.”

Brynnde stared at her.

“I’m only imagining all the arguments being made for the match,” Julia allowed. “All the reasons you don’t want to marry him have claims in their favor as well.”

“You should go into law,” said Brynnde.

WIP Wednesday

Yesterday I started writing again for the first time in weeks, and it felt really good. It can be difficult for me to carve out solid writing time in the summer with the kids home. At the very least, I was able to finish a chapter of Brynnde I’d left hanging. In this scene Brynnde and her friends Julia and Violet are cooling off on a hot day by wading in a fountain:

Julia grabbed her arm and laughingly swung her into her dance. Though normally an adept dance partner, in this instance Brynnde was taken off guard . . . and off balance. She spun and landed on her bottom in the water, her skirts buoyed briefly like Ophelia’s, then sinking.


A while back I put in some various bits of my writing into this analyzer and discovered Changers and Peter were written like Stephen King. This time I tried a bit of my Regency romance Brynnde and got:

Well, okay. Historical fiction, at least. That’s something.

I wonder how many authors they loaded into that thing and how it determines the matches? Still, a fun little exercise.

Revised Goals

So given that I have no control over one of my listed goals for 2016, and that I’ve completed almost all the others, I’m revising my goals for the back half of the year. (Goals in green have been achieved.)

1. Finish the revision of Changers.
2. Find an agent or publisher for Changers.
3. With my co-writer, finish the Hard Reset script. Finish and publish Brynnde.
4. Write and release at least one more Sherlock Holmes story.
5. Attend at least one writing conference and/or do at least one reading or signing.
6. Find a home for “Aptera.”
7. Finish the draft of Changers: The Great Divide.

I’m not actually sure about #7. I’d like to have it done by the end of the year, but I don’t know if I can finish Brynnde AND Changers 2 in the next 6 months. Still, good to have goals.

WIP Wednesday

More from my Regency romance Brynnde. In this scene, Julia is trying to come up with ways to attach her friend Violet to Mr. Dallweather:

“Get lost in the woods then!” Julia exclaimed, clapping with joy over her own cleverness. “And he and his dogs can find you! Even better if it’s raining.” She looked up at the sky, but the day was bright and clear, offering only a cool breeze as a hint of oncoming autumn.

“She’ll make herself sick, out in the cold and wet like that,” said Brynnde as she yanked at some grass. “And Mr. Dallweather has a horror of sickness. His first wife died rather abruptly from pleurisy.”

This gave Julia pause. “Does anyone die abruptly from pleurisy?” she wondered.

“I was very young,” Brynnde admitted, “but it seemed Mrs. Dallweather had a cold one day and was dead the next.”

Silence fell over them as they duly considered this. “Maybe not a rainy day then,” Julia finally amended.

WIP Wednesday

Another small bit of my Regency romance Brynnde. Here Brynnde has received a note from her ex-fiancé Garrick. Their engagement had to be called off due to Garrick’s brother falling into scandal. This is Brynnde’s reaction to the note:

Until that moment, Brynnde had not realized she’d still held hope in her heart for . . . Something. A reconciliation? A re-engagement? Some kind of attachment. No, she did not love Garrick, but a tiny part of her had hoped—believed—he loved her. She’d taken energy from that, and this note snatched it away.

WIP Wednesday

More from my Regency romance novel Brynnde:

“Am I to understand that you travel a good deal?” asked Brynnde.
“I do. I enjoy it. And I find the country unutterably dull.”
“I am sorry, then, that you were coerced into coming to our house party.”
“Well, it was either come along or knock around Ridgemow alone,” Garrick said.
“So we are the lesser of two evils.”
Garrick grinned. “Oh, Miss Archambault, I cannot imagine you to be the lesser of anything.”

I’ve done the math, and if I write 647 words per day, I can reach my goal of being finished by June 30 (assuming 55k words total). Seems doable, but some days I get almost nothing written, and with summer holidays, etc., who knows? Still, I have to try.

WIP Wednesday

Another tidbit from my Regency romance Brynnde:

Brynnde watched in a dazed and distracted sort of way as Garrick lifted his hand, not realizing what he meant to do until he ran a finger over her cheek. She knew she should pull away, but rather like a cat she felt compelled to push her cheek into the touch. “I doubt Papa would—” she began, but then a shrill call cut her words short.

“Brynnde! Brynnde, are you out here?”

“Yes, Maman!” Brynnde answered. She turned to give Garrick some hasty parting words but, like a shadow burned away by sunlight, he was already gone.