Sunday, December 8, 2019

WeWriWa: Draft One and Done . . . RISE BY MOONLIGHT


Nothing like a working vacation on location to get you to that epilogue! Just got back from a week long love affair with New Orleans, getting reacquainted with its unique rhythms, its traditions, and especially, its food! Finally, RISE BY MOONLIGHT’s first draft is complete. At almost 100,000 words, it’s time to begin some serious editing . . . right after this week’s WeWriWa excerpt featuring a heroine strong enough to carry a 15-book series, NOLA detective, Charlotte Caissie. Nothing’s harder for a wounded warrior loner to accept than help (or the fact that she requires it!). Cee Cee’s developed from a bullet train force of one crusading for many to someone dependent upon others to protect those she loves—a situation that doesn’t rest easy on her broad shoulders. 

Charlotte Caissie’s determined drive for justice had begun with her father’s murder at their Sunday dinner table. Now, she walked his streets, determined to carry that torch. The arrest of Warren Brady had shattered that system they’d devoted their lives to serving. When the police commissioner placed greed above the law she loved, he threatened not only her cause but her new extended family, as well. 

The tenuous existence of Max’s kind was already at risk. With Terriot refuges and threat from the North flooding the Quarter bringing division and danger, her passionate drive not to rely upon any resources or resolve beyond her own was no longer possible. Not when it came to the safety of those she loved. 

Her partner, Alain Babineau had her back on the streets; Mary Kate Malone, now Sister Catherine, held her confidence as sacred as her God; and, Max Savoie encompassed her heart with a tenderness and passion she’d never allowed or given another. This trinity, these two friends and this lover, were her world now, but a part of her still denied that good could defeat all the evil she’d recognized around her. And that darkness still grew, relentless, cold and all consuming, becoming a threat to her unborn daughter.

How could you not want to save this city? I miss it already. 

  

  

Here I go, plunging into that first edit. Wish me luck!

Happy Writing fellow Warriors!


Weekend Writing Warriors is a weekly hop for everyone who loves to write! Share an 8 to 10 sentence snippet of your writing on Sunday. Visit other participants on the list and read, critique, and comment on their 8sunday posts.

Spread the word, share the love, warriors - Hashtag #8sunday.

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

IWSG: Living the Dream


Our Insecure Writers Support Group question for December is: 

How would you describe your future writer self, your life and what it looks like and feels like if you were living the dream? Or if you are already there, what does it look and feel like? Tell the rest of us. What would you change or improve?

Every time I sit down to the keyboard to recreate the stories that fill my imagination, I am living The Dream, that writer’s dream of telling a tale that miraculously appears in print. That Dream began with a fractured fairytale published in my elementary school newspaper and continued with bits and pieces of imaginings jotted in notebooks well into my adult years. Sending out that first typewritten manuscript and getting that standard rejection; three manuscripts later, getting The Call; multibook contracts from three different NY publishers in three different genres under three different names demanding 11 books in one years; visiting my publisher’s office in NY and talking with the team that created my first By Moonlight covers and writing a New Orleans travel journal to help launch their first blog; getting a starred review from Publisher’s Weekly; accepting a Career Achievement Award from Romantic Times w/a Dana Ransom; yearly conference trips to places I’d only dreamed about to meet authors I idolized; a home office upgrade from the dining room table; speaking about writing to my sons’ classes at school; the pride of holding my first self-published book, REMEMBERED BY MOONLIGHT in a series I loved too much to let go, and now, just finishing the last book, RISE BY MOONLIGHT (my 70ish published book) in that 15-book series on vacay in New Orleans where the saga began twelve years ago.


After all that, with retirement just figured into the mix, The Dream hasn’t changed. It’s still turning on the computer early in the morning to share coffee with my characters, losing myself in their world, being constantly surprised by their cleverness or alarmed by their peril. And occasionally needing that cold shower.

The Dream was, and always will be, the magic of words coming to life one sentence at a time. And I’m living it.

How about you, fellow IWSGers? What are your dreams? Can’t wait to find out!

Happy Writing!


Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer - aim for a dozen new people each time.The awesome co-hosts for the December 4th posting of the IWSG will be Tonja Drecker, Beverly Stowe McClure, Nicki Elson, Tyrean Martinson!

Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!

Twitter hashtag is #IWSG

Sunday, November 10, 2019

WeWriWa: Battle Scars . . . RISE BY MOONLIGHT



You can recognize your friends when they share the same scars you have. Kindred goals and the same dark pasts bind former enemies into allies of necessity. Enjoy this scene from my now perennial W.I.P. RISE BY MOONLIGHT

“Aren’t you afraid of being bitten by that dog you tease with questions of trust?” 

He smiled at her cynicism, admitting, “Maybe, but I like them, Charlotte, and I can’t say that about many people. I understand them, the things they want, the things they fear, the things they stand for and I know how it feels to suffer the kind of losses they have. I’d rather have wild dogs like them running loose on my property than those collared pets sniffing around my porch pretending to be tame while looking for a place to sink their teeth.” 

As her hand covered his, they watched the five Terriots cross the porch outside the wide vista of windows. Though the morning was damp and cold, they stripped off shirts, shoes and socks to stretch and limber up. 

Cee Cee jumped as Max’s elbow caught her in the ribs. 

“You might want to suck up that drool.” 

She provided a naughty smile. “I was admiring their impressive . . . scars.”

I can’t believe it’s been over a YEAR since I began this last adventure in my “By Moonlight” dark shapeshifter series! Finally, there’s a light at the end of the series. One-by-one my plot lines are wrapping up as my last few chapters tie those threads together. If I was seriously doing NaNo, I’d be done by the time I leave for my New Orleans vacay in two weeks, but life (and a bad car battery) conspired against me. Still, there’s a chance that I may be doing first round edits of a completed draft while overlooking the NOLA in the city that birthed these books. 


Okay, back to Chapter 25 . . .

Happy Writing fellow Warriors!



Weekend Writing Warriors is a weekly hop for everyone who loves to write! Share an 8 to 10 sentence snippet of your writing on Sunday. Visit other participants on the list and read, critique, and comment on their 8sunday posts.

Spread the word, share the love, warriors - Hashtag #8sunday.

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

IWSG: Stranger Things . . .than Fiction


Our November IWSG question is: What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever googled in researching a story? Easy peasy – all writers know that truth is much stranger than fiction but getting to the root of that truth sometimes takes some serious digging. And some of the dirt we’re digging up is seriously strange!

When I started my writing career, research was done in the local library. Don’t get me started on the suspicious stares I got in the research section when requesting info on topics from exotic poisons to the best ways to dispose of dead bodies. Times certainly have changed! No topic is considered TOO strange or taboo where the Internet is concerned. You don’t even have to search hard – it’s right there for everyone to see whether they want to or not!

So, this week, when offing a villainous secondary character, I was trying to discover the most expeditious way for him to kill himself in the bathroom without the chance of being revived. Clock is ticking. Hanging, not feasible. Pills, none available. Finally, I narrowed it down to blood loss (no tools necessary if one has convenient fangs and claws). Wrist or carotid? Let’s ask Google. Immediately, I had a host of answers to choose from and after checking several found a Q&A site where you could ask your questions and experts in that field would respond. I received wonderfully detailed feedback (I know, I’m a ghoul) and something I didn’t expect - a host of responses from concerned strangers afraid I was asking in order to end my own life. Dozens of comments from health care providers, from those who’d lost someone or had attempted suicide themselves. My impersonal search had just inadvertently gotten very personal.Now I’m worried 9-1-1 will show up at my door, but also incredibly moved by the compassionate outreach. Next time, I’ll preface WHY I’m asking.Apparently, even Big Brother Google has a heart and soul.

Before I head off to read your posts, a bit a personal news – I’m RETIRED! 


Yes, just pulled that cord and now am floating above the job market without a care (but still some concerns!). I plan to put that extra time into my keyboard once I create a structured routine (What day is this anyway?). That’ll have to wait until after I get back from a fabulous vacay attending the vow renewal of one of my critique partners in New Orleans (and sneak in some additional research time for the last book in my By Moonlight series while hopefully beginning edits on the first draft.

Happy November, fellow writers!


Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer - aim for a dozen new people each time.The awesome co-hosts for the November 6th posting of the IWSG will be Sadira Stone, Patricia Josephine, Lisa Buie-Collard, Erika Beebe, and C. Lee McKenzie!

Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!

Twitter hashtag is #IWSG

Sunday, October 27, 2019

WeWriWa: Who Can You Trust? . . . RISE BY MOONLIGHT


Getting the last touches up for Halloween including this guy who protects the candy dish from those who try to take more than one piece. Not-a-good-idea! It helps to have powerful friends you can trust to have your back . . . as the displaced and threatened Terriot brothers discover in this week’s snippet from RISE BY MOONLIGHT

“You can’t trust anyone, not your friends and not who you’re related to, unless you’re mated to them.” 

“That include you, Savoie?” Rico cracked wise. 

Max didn’t smile as he leveled a cool-eyed stare on the smirking redhead and replied, “For the sake of your females and your unborn, you can’t overlook anyone’s motives, so I wouldn’t trust me any more than you can trust each other.” 

“That’s a pretty cynical speech for someone whose had us sleeping across the hall from his own mate.” 

Max returned Colin’s wry smile. “You should be worried about her, not the other way around.” He finished his coffee in a gulp and surveyed the ragged-edged group. “I’ve never had much luck with those who called themselves my family, but I consider you all my allies. I trust our shared goals more than I believe blood wins out over self-interest and if I’m a fool to do so, I guess I’ll find out soon enough, won’t I?” 

“Guess we both will,” Cale agreed.


I’d want Max in my corner, any day! Or night!

All newly revved up to write by a local NaNo meeting, I’m determined to finish this book by the end of November! I only need about 18,000 words, which sounds easy . . . only if I’ll put butt in chair to write them. Buuuuut, I am fiercely competitive, so this may be just the carrot of encouragement I need to get me to The End (of first draft!) - especially since I’ll be spending the last week of November in New Orleans for the vow renewal of one of my former Big Easy traveling companions, and I don’t want to lug my laptop . . . unless it’s to do a read through at the roof top pool when not out taking pictures for future PR purposes. Sounds like a good plan to me!

And if you haven’t taken advantage of my offer of a $10 Amazon Gift Card at Bookhound’s Spooktacular Giveaway Hop, jump over and take a chance to win some awesome goodies! 


Hope you all have a Howling good Halloween. I’ll be waiting . . . with my lights on! 




Weekend Writing Warriors is a weekly hop for everyone who loves to write! Share an 8 to 10 sentence snippet of your writing on Sunday. Visit other participants on the list and read, critique, and comment on their 8sunday posts.

Spread the word, share the love, warriors - Hashtag #8sunday.

Sunday, October 20, 2019

WeWriWa: Ya Gotta Have Friends . . . RISE BY MOONLIGHT


The best part of writing a loooong, over-arcing series is developing an assortment of heroes and heroines who weave throughout the plot lines, complementing and challenging each other, and in RISE BY MOONLIGHT, the final book of fifteen in my By Moonlight series, they’re all pulled together for one big final hurrah. Three strong, distrustful clans uniting to defend against a mutual foe is no easy feat when generations of bad blood and violent self-interest rears its ugly head. But it’s all for one or none left at all when factions gather in New Orleans to make what could well be their last stand in today’s excerpt.


“What is it you think I can do?”

“What you do every damned time you’re in the room.” When Max fixed Rico with a penetrating stare, the redhead smiled, adding, “Yeah, that, putting the fear of perdition into folks who believe what rumors say you’re capable of doing.”

Max hadn’t planned to get involved without discussing it with his mate, but he couldn’t ignore their plea or deny the logic that an unknown variable could shake things up. He was good at playing a bluff when the stakes were high, when a wild card was all that was needed.

“Tell me when, fill me in on your play, and I’ll back you.”

For the first time that morning, the shoulders on every Terriot relaxed.

“This is our city,” Max vowed, his words echoing with finality, “and our families will live here without fear. That’s my promise to you.”

And finally, they believed it.

Keeping your friends close and your former enemies closer can be a recipe for success . . . or disaster. This quote sums it up:


Let’s hope they make the right choice. Deciding which one it will be is what makes writing fiction so much fun!

Speaking of FUN, I’m participating in Bookhound’s Spooktacular Giveaway Blog Hop, offering up a $10 Amazon Gift Card to tuck into some lucky visitor’s treat bag on the big day, Halloween. Check it out and join in!



Sorry I’ve been absent for several Sundays. Sudden BIG changes have been happening, the biggest and most exciting (and terrifying) is applying for Social Security Retirement after concluding that I’m too old for this stressful 9-to-5 sh*t. I visited SSA, did the math and submitted the application. Now, I’m holding my breath . . . The thought of all that writing time is making me giddy! Those who’ve taken that step, share some encouragement.

Wish me luck, Fellow Warriors!


Weekend Writing Warriors is a weekly hop for everyone who loves to write! Share an 8 to 10 sentence snippet of your writing on Sunday. Visit other participants on the list and read, critique, and comment on their 8sunday posts.

Spread the word, share the love, warriors - Hashtag #8sunday.

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

SPOOKTACULAR GIVEAWAY TIME!!


October is my favorite time of year and Halloween my favorite holiday. Goblins, Ghosties and, best of all, Goodies! I’m joining my fellow bloggers and BOOKHOUNDS for a sweeeeet Hop from now until the Big Day itself, Halloween, when I’ll be handing out a yummy $10 Amazon Gift Card that I’d love to tuck into your goodie bag! Sign up below (and take some extra chances, too!) then, make sure to follow along the Hop to see what treats my neighbors are handing out!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck to all!! Winner will be notified via email at the end of the Hop.

And now, another goodie – a sneak peek at RISE BY MOONLIGHT, the concluding book in my By Moonlight dark shapeshifter series! 



He felt her before gates opened onto the long drive leading to their gracefully crumbling plantation house. Her essence teased up his nose, stirring his awareness like a smooth stone dropping into a still, deep pond. Ripples of warmth and desire spread outward in eager little shivers. She was home, and everything calmed in his complicated world.

Max waited, still as the heavy antique furnishings, a tall indistinguishable shape teased out by flames from the low parlor fire as the front door opened.With a brisk staccato on marble tiles, her silhouette hurried by, then the tap of heels paused, backtracking until Charlotte Caissie framed the doorway the way she did his life, with her strength, proud stature and shrewd intuition. A smile flashed with her welcoming, “Hi.”

His reply rumbled, a rough caress. “Welcome home, sha. How was your day?” Simple domestic comments steeped in an intimacy that relaxed the taut line of her shoulders. 

“Same ole, same ole.” She entered the room with her long, confident stride, crossing to him as an end rather than a means to the rest of that day. Her fingertips brushed over the bristle of evening stubble on his cheek on their way to cup the back of his dark head, drawing him down for a slow, reassuring exchange as vital to both their lives as oxygen.

Separately, the unlikely couple walked a parallel line of complications both tried not to cross. He was a criminal turned business powerhouse ruling a clan of shapeshifters threatened with extermination, she a fiercely determined detective sworn to protect a very different kind of citizen from a deadly truth about to overtake them. Though their paths were different, they led to the same end . . . to this house, this moment, and ultimately, to the survival of those they loved.

Max feared for her, not because she was weaker, but because she was his. Just, as she would ferociously claim he was hers. Two parts of the same whole now that they were a bonded pair. But those two parts would soon become a trio. They’d ever had any kind of normal family life growing up. But their child, he vowed every time he glanced at that ever-increasing midsection, would be different, fiercely loved, protected, spared the isolation and fear that had shaped both parents. Max would do anything to see that dream to fruition. 

Anything.

If you're new to my By Moonlight world and don't have time to hurry through all 14 previous books, start at Book 9, REMEMBERED BY MOONLIGHT, which will bring you up to speed with the characters (Max and Cee Cee in particular) and the stakes to be achieved in RISE BY MOONLIGHT. Sink your teeth in and have a howling good time!


Happy Halloween and Happy Hopping!!

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

IWSG: Everything Old is New Again


Our Insecure Writers Support Group question for October is a doozy: It’s been said that the benefits of becoming a writer who does not read is that all your ideas are new and original. Everything you do is an extension of yourself, instead of a mixture of you and another author. On the other hand, how can you expect other people to want your writing, if you don’t enjoy reading? What are your thoughts?

I think the real question here is how is someone who doesn’t read able to write anything worth reading? Perhaps the question implies that this writer isn’t reading anything NEW for fear of subconsciously plagiarizing something he or she has just or is now reading. But what about all the things they’ve read to this point? Did all that input somehow just disappear from memory? Does this isolated author not watch TV, have conversations, listen to the news or music? ALL input influences our creative stewpot of ideas. It’s ridiculous to assume that not reading while writing makes all new material ORIGINAL. Smarter folk than me have already determined that there are no new ideas, just new interpretations of them. Fresh input is what stimulates the imagination, stirs What if's that fuel plots and character development. If you don’t embrace the beauty of words and ideas, how can you create either? 


On the other hand, while I’m writing in one genre, I make a conscious effort not to read books that contain the same threads I’m using – not because I’m afraid that I’ll duplicate them, but because I might get discouraged from the direction I’m going because my ideas aren’t as ‘original’ as I thought. The “It’s already been done and probably better” has killed many a great notion.

I’d as soon not eat as not read (actually, I should probably do a lot less of the former!). Reading stimulates creative imagination, giving us the primary colors we use for our own masterpieces. It’s all in the mixing and shading and exploration that a new great work is rendered.

Final take: A well not fed will soon run dry.

Find out what other IWSGers think by exploring the links below.



Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer - aim for a dozen new people each time.The awesome co-hosts for the October 2nd posting of the IWSG will be Ronel Janse van Vuuren, Mary Aalgaard, Madeline Mora-Summonte, and Ellen @ The Cynical Sailor!

Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!

Twitter hashtag is #IWSG

Sunday, September 29, 2019

WeWriWa: Bad to the Bone . . . RISE BY MOONLIGHT


If you’ve read the previous “By Moonlight” books, you’ve met the baddest of the bad guys . . . and SURPRISE, it’s a woman. Genevieve Savorie has been searching for her nephew Max since her pregnant sister ran away with the man she’d been promised for her mate . . . not to shelter the poor orphaned boy, but to control his inheritance of tremendous power. When she sweeps down from Chicago to New Orleans like a bitterly cold Nor’easter, it’s not to embrace him, it’s to destroy all he hopes to build within his mutinous clan. Meet Aunt Gen . . .


Evil whispered in his ear, “Hello, Michael. Friends again?”

He turned to face the lovely creature he’d once admired, back when having a soul was a deficit and cold cunning, the highest aspiration.

“You use that word as if you know what it means.”

“I’ve no use for things that get in the way of what I want or what our people need. Have you remembered what those things are or have you called me here for a different reason, one that would allow you to live beyond our reunion.”

She was so beautiful it was difficult to believe such evil thrived beneath that glamorous surface. Tall, fashionably garbed, flawlessly pale, dark in hair and soul, a lovely surface covering the blackest ichor, her resemblance to her sister went only skin-deep. She craved power the way poor Marie, had sought love, with an unquestioning fervor that brought about her destruction - a fate Genevieve would share if her nephew had his way.

In that moment, Father Michael Furness decided he would not fall with her.

Enjoy a little rockin’ anthem to those who play by their own rules . . . but ultimately lose by them.


I’m at a four-day Writing Retreat hopefully cranking out chapters toward the end of my “By Moonlight” series . . . a bittersweet ambition. How’s your weekend going, fellow Warriors?



Weekend Writing Warriors is a weekly hop for everyone who loves to write! Share an 8 to 10 sentence snippet of your writing on Sunday. Visit other participants on the list and read, critique, and comment on their 8sunday posts.

Spread the word, share the love, warriors - Hashtag #8sunday.

Sunday, September 22, 2019

WeWriWa: Dreams v Desires – RISE BY MOONLIGHT


The one thing I like the most about the returning heroine in my “By Moonlight” series is her self-sufficient determination. But strength can sometimes become its own weakness as Cee Cee discovers in this excerpt from my W.I.P.

Troubled by her restless demons, Cee Cee relied upon the heat and security radiating from the male beside her. It had never been her habit to depend upon anyone for strength, let alone a man once thought to be both mobster and monster, but Max Savoie had quickly become a habit impossible to break. Not that she wanted to, never that! But after a lifetime of caring only for herself with a determined, excluding selfishness, sometimes she had to remind herself to let him in, to trust him to trust her. 

Like now. 

She had no defensible reasons for hiding her agenda from her mate. If anyone could be counted on to support her choices, she need look no farther than the figure beside her. She knew that. But knowing and blindly believing were sometimes difficult to justify when standing at a crossroads of divergent paths, one that led to dreams and the other to desires. Difficult scales to balance upon an uncertain fulcrum.

In my opinion, the strongest and most admirable people recognize and admit their own flaws and by that, seek to improve. On the flipside, the best villains never do. They can’t accept the same imperfections in their own character that they demonize in others. Greed becomes ambition. Exploitation of the powerless is justified as for their own good or their protection. Cruelty is cloaked as teaching character. It’s hard to admit mistakes and much easier to blame them on others. It’s easier to take the credit than to share it with those deserving of it. Dreams and desires are there for the taking, regardless of who it hurts. And therein lies the line between hero and bad guy, a line that can be danced upon but never crossed. I’ll be looking for a good sneak peek of my villain to share next week.

Hoping to get more chapters in this weekend leading up to a four-day Write In near Lake Michigan starting on Thursday. Let the words roll!

Happy Weekend, fellow Warriors!


Weekend Writing Warriors is a weekly hop for everyone who loves to write! Share an 8 to 10 sentence snippet of your writing on Sunday. Visit other participants on the list and read, critique, and comment on their 8sunday posts.

Spread the word, share the love, warriors - Hashtag #8sunday.

Sunday, September 15, 2019

WeWriWa: Making Up – RISE BY MOONLIGHT


The best part of disagreeing with someone you love is making up afterwards – even if you still don’t agree. ‘Don’t ever go to bed angry’ is good advice that’s kept my main characters together through 15 books, and today’s excerpt from RISE BY MOONLIGHT is no exception. 

“You look refreshed,” he murmured, smile neutral. 

“You look . . . Savoie, you are the hardest damned person to read sometimes, hell, make that most of the time,” she corrected, crossing to where he stood by their open balcony doors. The cool night breeze did tempting things beneath the thin T-shirt molded to her lush frame, the way her fingertips did along his shirtfront as she stepped up close. It wasn’t in her nature to hide from a problem, but she was a master at circumventing them with her sighed request of, “Could you just hold me?” 

“I can do that, Detective.” 

His big hands soothed along the tough line of her, one going high to press flat between the always capable shoulders, the other slipping low to rest at the tempting dip of her spine. She melted against him, all supple muscle and heat and, with a jolt, he realized, vulnerability. 

Head tucking beneath his chin now that she was barefoot, she sighed, “I don’t like it when we argue.” 

“Nor do I, sha.” 

Discussion tabled for the night, but not forever.

A calm before the storm of truth and consequences to come? Perhaps, but I’ll let them enjoy it . . . at least until next week. 


I’m taking part in the Midnight Reader Appreciation Day event on the Midnight Garden Reader Group Facebook page on Friday, September 20th as one of over 130 authors posting giveaways throughout the day. Stop over to join the group so you can get in on the fun, meet new authors, and have a chance to win some great stuff! Everybody loves free stuff! 


Had a great time last weekend with my critique group, plotting, writing, relaxing with Rocketman and homemade caramel corn (thank you, Steve!), and just plain absorbing creative energy from one another. The encouragement of like-minded folk is essential in our solitary career path. And that’s what we find here each Sunday with our fellow Warriors. If I haven’t said it enough, THANK YOU for your uplifting words and for sharing slices of your writing journey each week – a path none of us travel alone.

Enjoy the Weekend and Write On!!


Weekend Writing Warriors is a weekly hop for everyone who loves to write! Share an 8 to 10 sentence snippet of your writing on Sunday. Visit other participants on the list and read, critique, and comment on their 8sunday posts.

Spread the word, share the love, warriors - Hashtag #8sunday.

Sunday, September 8, 2019

WeWriWa: It’s a Grrrrrl Thing – RISE BY MOONLIGHT


Relationships are hard. Especially when you put two strong, determined and, frankly, dangerously different individuals together. The main couple from my “By Moonlight” shapeshifter series are equally matched for their courage and commitment to what they believe in. Bring a baby-onboard into the hormonal mix and those protective instinctive roar to life. Today’s excerpt from my W.I.P., RISE BY MOONLIGHT is just the tip of the iceberg they’ll have to chip through.

It wasn’t that he felt in any way superior to his mate. Charlotte Caissie had proven herself tough and capable and far above the gender card she was trying to force upon his argument. He didn’t fear for her because if he’d learned anything, it was that the females of either species were equal if not more skilled in handling trying circumstances. Like the others who’d mated and stood by his small cluster of friends, she was smart and tough and unbelievably fierce when what she loved was threatened.

Max feared for her, not because she was weaker, but because she was his. Just, as she would ferociously claim he was hers. Two parts of the same whole now that they were a bonded pair. 

But those two parts would soon become a trio.

Neither of them had ever had any kind of normal family life growing up amid danger and deception, but their child, he vowed every time he glanced at that ever-increasing midsection, would be different—fiercely loved, protected, spared from the isolating fear that had shaped both parents. And Max would do absolutely anything to see that dream to fruition. 


Poor Max is going to have a rough time keeping this “little woman” safe – especially when her job as an NO detective puts her in the line of fire. Even the best intentions tend to fuel the fire with a woman as fiercely independent as Cee Cee who has spent her entire career proving herself as an equal. Just don’t say girl like it’s a bad thing.


I’m spending this weekend with my grrrrl friends, the fabulous critique partners who’ve had my back for almost twenty years, hosting both at home and at the job (my new bosses let me use our office conference room to host a Saturday write in! Now that’s an employment perk!), and at month’s end, I’m heading to Lake Michigan for a four-day writers’ getaway. I’ve got a quarter of this first draft left to conquer and am determined to make it so! Wish me luck.


Since pages need a proper setting to come to fruition, check out this month’s Insecure Writers Support Group post reflecting on my dream place(s) to write.

Happy Fall and Happy Writing, fellow Warriors!!


Weekend Writing Warriors is a weekly hop for everyone who loves to write! Share an 8 to 10 sentence snippet of your writing on Sunday. Visit other participants on the list and read, critique, and comment on their 8sunday posts.

Spread the word, share the love, warriors - Hashtag #8sunday.

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

IWSG: Water, Water, Everywhere


Our Insecure Writers Support Group question for September is “If you could pick one place in the world to sit and write your next story, where would it be and why?” For me, a Michigan native defined by the Great Lakes, that’s anywhere there’s water.

There’s something about a water mass that calms, revitalizes and energizes my creative soul. There’s a rhythm, a tranquil power to it that hypnotizes with each wave and ripple. The sound is soothing and almost musical. Plant me at an open window where I can see, smell and listen to its song and words flow.



I can’t pick just one special place, though Gun Lake, Michigan comes to mind first since our annual Mid-Michigan Romance Writers of America Retreat from Harsh Reality meets on the water’s edge. I sneak away from the activities to plant myself in a quiet space with a window open and WIP magic occurs.


Other favorites spots are where my critique group has gathered around our Mitten, from a bluff overlooking Lake Huron in Ontario to the shore of Lake Michigan complete with lighthouse (top two photos), and the yearly getaway with a group of my former co-workers at a lake cottage turned lake mansion on Lake James, Indiana. An obscenely early riser, I can always find a stolen hour and an extra chapter as nature wakes and the sunrise spills across the water.


Even when my laptop wasn’t at hand, my imagination was swept away during an Ixtapa, Mexico vacation where the salty Pacific (and Coronas with lime on a sunny terrace between pool and ocean with strangers turned friends helping me plot ways to do murder ala the hang gliders soaring above our bay) gave way to the back drop for one of my romantic suspenses.



Perhaps my favorite escape of the imagination was cruising the Caribbean, getting up before daybreak to sit out on the balcony each morning, writing by the light of my screen to the sound of the ocean until distracted by an amazing sunrise. Salt, surf, serenity . . . aaaaah!



It doesn’t have to be an ocean or a Great Lake. Even a stream running behind our Riverside Retreat in Marshall, Michigan fulfilled my muse as mist rose from it each morning.


Sooooo, where is your Paradise, fellow IWSGers? I can’t wait to find out!



Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer - aim for a dozen new people each time.The awesome co-hosts for the September 4th posting of the IWSG will be Gwen Gardner, Doreen McGettigan, Tyrean Martinson, Chemist Ken, and Cathrina Constantiner!

Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!

Twitter hashtag is #IWSG