My Year in Review.

So, let’s be honest with ourselves, 2017 has been of a garbage fire of a year in the world around us. It’s been difficult to concentrate on being creative as a writer, particular as I write happy endings. It’s hard to be upbeat, but it’s important to do so.

My writing year was a busy one. I had three novels and two short stories published this year with Hot Tree Publishing. I also wrote three novels, three short stories, and a novella. I’ve essentially wrapped up an entire series in a year.

My end of the year word count: 206, 436 (not including the multiple flash fictions I wrote.)

Can I have a nap now?

I’m proud of the work I’ve done this year.

Proud of myself.

The Sin Bin series has been written. Next year the last of the books will be finished. I love my rugby lads and I’m sad I’ll be saying goodbye to them.

But…but…I’m looking forward to the stories I want to write in 2018, though I’ll share more on that in another post. But a sneak peek, I’ll be working on a cozy mystery novella trilogy among other things.

How are you feeling about what you’ve accomplished this year? Did you meet your goals?

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Snow.

The weatherman told us we’d get a little bit of snow on Friday.  The bastard lied.  We got non-stop thick snow for most of the day and wound up with around eight to ten inches. My dog was not amused.

She hopped around in it for a bit, completely disappearing.

I loved it…right up until the point when both our power and internet decided to go out.

I handled it fairly well.  I lived in the Dominican Republic for two years when I was in my twenties, dealing with power outages was a daily occurrence, so  I have loads of experience.

What do I do with my time? I reread the Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs (the ones I had in paperback in any case.) I also read a few of Mary Balogh’s novels.  Oh, and I made some headway on a less exciting non-fiction book that I’ve been putting off.

My beloved hubby did NOT handle being without power and internet.  Accurate depiction of him:

He also whined a bit (and by that I mean constantly), and I ended up feeling a bit like this:

Did you get any snow this weekend?

I survived.

So, I had the brilliant idea to do  National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) once again last month.

And, I won!

I’d dance like Meryl, but I’m so damn tired. My brain melted into a pile of goo the second I’d typed out The End. December will hopefully be a quieter month, even though I have two novels to edit.  Editing is slightly easier than writing, but I still I loathe it.

My NaNoWriMo novel, One Last Heist, turned out brilliantly. It had all the twists and turns I’d hoped for, and some I never expected. It’s now in the hands of my capable betas, and I won’t worry about it for a little while.

My relationships with friends and family appear to have survived the madness. I did have to bribe my dog with many treats to forgive me for being chained to my desk. =) NaNo can be a trying adventure with words.

This year the words flowed far better than they have any other year. I’ve participated in the November madness several times. Each one feels a bit different. One Last Heist definitely had my muse’s full attention, and I didn’t necessarily struggle with my daily goals with the exception of one day early in the month.

I can’t wait to share Mack & Toshiro’s story with everyone next year.

One of the greatest lessons I’ve learned through NaNo is I can’ only manage it once a year. I’m never going to be an 8k word a day author.  I barely manage 800 to 1000 words on an average day. It’s more about keeping myself steadily making progress.

But once a year in November, I indulge in a bit of insanity, and some of my best work has come from it. (After the Scrum, The Caretaker, and now One Last Heist.)

And now, I can take a nap…several naps.

Did you take part in the NaNo madness? How did you do?

Color of Love Event

Welcome to the 2017 edition of the COLOR OF LOVE Blog Hop co-hosted by Empi BaryehKiru TayeNana Prah, and Love Bites and Silk.This year’s hop is on from today 23 November to December, 2017. 

We’re celebrating People of Color in romance and offering you a chance to discover new books and new authors, as well as giving you a chance to win prizes. We have 30 blogs participating this year, each featuring an interracial or multicultural romance book! 

 This year, we’re doing things a little differently. We’ve separated the cash and book prizes so more people can win:

Here’s what’s up for grabs:
BOOK PRIZES
We’re introducing daily book prizes. Be sure to comment on blog posts and join the conversation on our 
FACEBOOK EVENT PAGE for a chance to win one of our 24 book prizes.

CASH PRIZES
Enter the rafflecopter below for a chance to win:
• 1st prize $50 GC
• 2nd prize $25 GC
• 3rd prize $15 GC
• 4th prize $10 GC

MY  BLOG PRIZE:
One Kindle Copy of The Royal Marine – to comment on this blog post.
FEATURED BOOK

COLOR OF LOVE 2017 FEATURED BOOKS

ENTER RAFFLECOPTER
http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/75c4d51c121/

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HOP ON TO THE NEXT BLOG
https://goo.gl/wPyQEE

Review: The Unexpected Santa

This is a slow burn story that tantalizes even as it soothes the soul.  Written from both Gray and Scottie’s points of view, the reader really gets a good idea of what is going on in the irascible Scottie’s head.  A delightful short, it is well-written, realistic, and I adore the way the author presents the twins’ autism and how simple it is to work around and with it.  There is steam in the palpable chemistry between the two MCs, but this short doesn’t take their relationship too far.  Super hot kisses will leave you aching for more, but it is clear that these two men belong together. 

 As I mentioned to the author, I am salivating for the actual coming together of these two men.  She assured me that the rest of their story is coming, and I simply must recommend this book to be read right now, as well as The Sin Bin series as a whole!  I rate The Unexpected Santa at 4 sweet yet very hot stars.” 4 Stars from Cat C. at Divine Magazine

 

Oh, A Squirrel.

Or, the biggest distractions to my writing–and how I attempt to combat them.

Note I said attempt. I’m not always successful. Okay. Fine. I admit that I’m rarely if ever successful, but maybe you can learn from my mistakes.

My biggest distractions are…

1. My Dog – I mean. Could you deny this face?

How do I combat it? I don’t. Look at her face?

2. The internet.

You could combat it by turning off the computer. Do I? No lol. The best way I’ve found to avoid internet distractions is to get away from my computer and write by hand for a while.

3. Hot men on the internet.

I suppose technically this is part of #2, but I thought it deserved its own point.

4. Video Games.

I LOVE video games. LOVE. I’ve owned just about every type of gaming console from an Atari to an Xbox. The easiest way I combat the distraction is to use them as a reward–if I reach my writing goal for the day, I can play the game.

5. My husband.

This is actually not a distraction but an interruption. My beloved husband LOVES to stand in the doorway to my office to chat with me. He talks…and talks…and talks.  I love him, but sometimes:

What are your distractions and how do you combat them?

How to Celebrate the Holidays…

…when you hate them.

Or, in other words, how Scottie celebrates Christmas.

Scottie Monk loathes the holidays. It’s the worst time of the year in his opinion. Here are a few suggestions he has for how to make it through December holiday parties and celebrations:

  1. Don’t.
  2. Seriously. Just fucking don’t.
  3. Have a drink.
  4. Repeat Step 3.
  5. Start over at 1.

As to why, here’s a list of what he hates about them:

  1. Everything.
  2. See above.

Do you love celebrating the holidays? Or, like Scottie, do you prefer to hide until all the fun is over?