Sunday, April 29, 2012

Flexible Writing (Yoga Optional)

I once met a mother who said she liked me because I was a "flexible" parent. No. I can't do the splits or turn a cartwheel, but I have learned that sometimes rolling with the child's schedule and adjusting the parenting dial of discipline helps me be a better mother.

I wish I could say I am always in tune and know when to adjust the dial, but I am not perfect. Sometimes I just realize that there are too many bumps in the parenting road and I rethink my position about how to handle my attempts to raise a well-rounded citizen of the world.

The same can be said about my writing. I'm a writer. I write stories. I have goals and personal deadlines because I treat my writing like a job, not a hobby. I am a professional, unpaid writer who desires publication. I tend to move forward in a nice, linear fashion when I start my books. I write fast. Messy, sloppy first drafts are my game. I like to get the story out.

It doesn't seem to matter how much I plan, the map is not even a guideline by the time I get to the middle of the book. Things get quite murky and I toss the dang outline aside just to keep writing forward. I've learned I'm better at tearing apart a first draft and finding the real story inside the shell I've created so I'm always itchy to finish my first draft. That's when the real writing can begin.

Last year I set my writing goals. One goal was to complete two books in a four book series. I outlined four books. I had my characters all planned out. I had the story arc for the entire series written out in an overview. I had the first book plotted/outlined and I began writing it in earnest in January. It's "finished" but not really, because I had another project pop into my life that required my setting aside the book I was working on, rethinking the entire series in a new way, and working on a revision for another book.

I had to do the "downward facing dog" of writing yoga and look at everything from a different perspective. I had to be flexible as a writer. Twist my brain inside out and make it work in a new way. The only thing I knew I was capable of doing was the cutting of the debris that was no longer deemed necessary. But once I cut the debris out, would I have a story? Would the characters I had not hung out with for a long while actually come out to play again? I immediately went into "child's pose" and whimpered a bit at the prospect.

Even worse, I had to wait to start. I am not a patient sort, so waiting was very hard. Very very very very very hard. I admit it: I am not good at biding my time. I was actually quite worried about the waiting period. The dominoes of time were falling fast. I panicked. I was very scared I'd fail before I started because I'd lost so much time (my freakish obsession with time is legendary in my family--I'm not allowed to wear a watch when we go on vacation as a result). Thankfully, I have amazing friends and writing partners who encouraged me and told me I had plenty of time. The dominoes slowly reassembled into their neat little timelines during my biding time.

Waiting was actually a good thing. It gave me time to think, mull, ask questions, search my mind for solutions, and cajole my characters out of my noggin. Biding my time meant I could gently tiptoe back into the story while banging out the first draft of the other story I was writing. When I finally sat down to work on the revision, I had a more flexible attitude about the entire process.

When I was in revision mode, I realized that the type of writing I do often impacts where I sit down to write. I can write a first draft anywhere, any time, any amount of words. There are no constrictions to the writing. It flows. I can tune out the people and noises so easily when I am in first draft mode. I can write in airports, restaurants, coffee shops. I just write.

Revisions? Not so easy. I have move around and go to other places inside the house so I'm not tempted to do the "business" of writing--okay, check emails and facebook and tweet. I readily confess that I am great at distracting myself in the cyber world. During revisions, I often sit at a table, in the kitchen area, with my notebook close at hand. I have to think more, jot notes, walk away, come back, sit down, pour tea, anything I can do to trick my characters into telling me more about their story.

It is their story. I know their story. I have it inside me. I'm slowly letting it come out and trying really hard to be patient with my characters. Whenever my patience is tried, I get up and walk away. I adjust my thinking. I return with a new idea and ask them, "Is this what you were trying to tell me two years ago? Oh, okay, I get it. Then I will write it for you."

I also take a lot of showers. No matter what kind of writing phase I am in, I tend to get the greatest inspiration while washing my hair and putting on my makeup.

How do you switch gears between different kinds of writing? Does place or time matter to you? And what brand shampoo works best for you should your go-to method for inspiration be the same as mine?

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

A Day in the Life of a Female Writer--THE RIVER WITCH WINNER ANNOUNCED

I recently read a great book about writing called THE ART OF WAR FOR WRITERS by James Scott Bell. I could incorporate everything he'd written about and apply it to my life except for 1 section. The section talked about being a prolific and fast writer. He's right. The more we write, the better we become as writers and as revisers. And the list of prolific writers and their example of how much they wrote was very impressive. I was blown away by all that they had done. One writer even went to a library and used a dime driven typewriter in the library's basement where he banged out a novel in 6 weeks. Impressive. Very impressive.

Now look at the pronoun: HE.

And guess why HE went to the library? Because he'd just become a father of a new baby (not sure how many HE had with his wife) and the baby's crying *um* disturbed his writing time and concentration. Oh, how I can relate. But then, in a similar position, guess what I'd be doing? Yup. I'd be at home with the baby and taking care of it between looking after the house and the groceries and the laundry and maybe the job and oh, trying to squeeze in writing time.

I know one writer friend who is a mom, has a full time job, and currently just signed a three book deal. She gets up at 4AM every morning and writes until it's time to go to work. But I bet she also takes care of a lot of other things, too. I bet her hubby helps. But then, I'll have to ask how she does it all and does it well. And I wonder HOW MUCH MORE PROLIFIC WOULD SHE BE if she could go to the library and write all day?

Hmmm... Truth is women are master jugglers. Often times, the busier we are, the more we accomplish. Less to do equals less accomplished in many cases. But I have to go on to say that in all the examples given by James Scott Bell, NONE OF THEM WERE WOMEN. Which then brings me to a mini rant about how much more beautiful the world would have been had women been given the time and opportunity and education eons ago during the pre-liberation ages. How many artists and writers and dreamers and innovators did we lose because the potential to become those wonderful things was wrapped in a female's skin?

I know. I am being a bit "political." But I just finished a power and haunting book that shows me how great a gift it is to live in a society that gives women the opportunity to become who they need to become. Trust me. Not all societies in these days offer women that freedom. And that's a post for another day.

I'm one of the lucky female writers because I don't have a DREADED DAY JOB or what's referred to in the Romance world as the DDJ. I have been raising the chick since she came home and filled my hours with volunteer work at church, school, HOA duties, and various other roles. I wasn't eating bon bons or watching TV all day (I admit a fondness for ALL MY CHILDREN and ONE LIFE TO LIVE back in the day--probably where all my ideas come from LOL).

But the truth is, I have a lot to take care of in addition to the writing. The Physicist travels a lot, sometimes for many weeks. So I'm often dealing with the Teen alone. Not so bad these days, but it is still my responsibility to make sure she's fed, watered, healthy, etc. Along with all those duties, I do the bulk of the household duties because I am not bringing in an income. I feel I must justify my existence and I use what is called "maid money" to support my writing habit.

So there's laundry, cleaning, dusting, grocery shopping, clutter clearing, overall maintenance of the day-to-day living that take up my time. I don't have the luxury of going to some library and typing on my laptop all day. That's the truth of it. And since I'm not a night owl, I must write during the day and figure out how to squeeze all the other duties in without losing site of my writing goals.

I have a schedule. I can ignore dust, but not for long. So I often clean house while I'm waiting for my pages to get back to me. And nowadays there's this pressure to be a presence in the social media world, but I ignore that pressure because I agree with James Scott Bell: THE BOOK TRUMPS EVERYTHING.

I'd like to be more prolific, but LIFE trumps the books. And at the end of this writer's life, I hope to have quilt of happiness enveloping me. A quilt that love, friendship, motherhood, companionship, and writing created.

And speaking of happiness, here's the winner of THE RIVER WITCH: Robin!! Yay!! Congratulations and I'll get your information to KIMBERLY BROCK.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Break Out the Bubbly and Dark Chocolate: Celebrating Debut Author Kimberly Brock's Book THE RIVER WITCH

Hi Everyone, I'm so excited to introduce you to a wonderful person and friend Kimberly Brock and celebrate her Women's Fiction debut novel THE RIVER WITCH. I'm so excited for her and let me tell you, she deserves this honor so much! I can't wait to share her writing experiences and journey to publication. So pop*sizzle*pour and sip. 

Tell me Kim, how did you end up becoming a writer?  
Debut Author Kimberly Brock
      I’ve been a storyteller all my life. Ask my family, who endured many hours of reenacted Disney films or impromptu plays. Ask my childhood friends and teachers, who swallowed tall tales and ghost stories whole on the playground and paid the price later, afraid to sleep in their beds. They believed I had descended from an angry Cherokee Indian Chief. They believed I was going blind like Helen Keller. I was in trouble all the time for inventing and embellishing. And then, around the age of five somebody gave me a crayon and that was that. That’s when I became a writer. 

I love the crayon story!! That's a great start to your writing career. When you write are you a plotter or do you follow the muse?
I write like a Pirate. I outline, but it’s more of a suggestion than a rule. I fill notebooks from the time I start to think about a story until the day I finish the last draft. I clip pictures or print things I see online. I research and pile that in the notebook, too. I might not use half of it, but I never throw any of it out. And sometimes I put the notebook away for a while if I’m struggling with the writing, then pick it up weeks later and reading through it fresh can be like a new perspective. I’ll see things differently, or have a thought that takes me in a whole new direction. My notebook isn’t exactly an outline, but in the end it’s a map. I don’t necessarily realize where it’s going while I’m writing, but I can trace my steps back like breadcrumbs when I’m finished. If you could take the top of my head off and look inside to see the book I want to write, that would be my notebook.
Sounds like you're a collage writer. I love to work with multi-mediums as well during the planning stages. Best part of writing is the first draft. After you finish writing, how do you relax after a writing day?
I have three children under the age of twelve and the youngest is four. I hide in the bathroom like all smart Mamas. I love to cook. I love a glass of wine. When I can, I love to travel. I love water, the southern coast. But we lived on Puget Sound for a few years and I miss it, too. I’m a complete coffee addict. And I discovered France a few years ago. Part of the novel was actually written in a tiny hotel room in Paris on a New Year’s Eve.
We are huge fans of France. And I remember the early years. Bathroom is a great place to hide. And next time we see each other, we'll sip wine on a veranda overlooking the Atlanta skylilne! What do you read? What are your favorite genres? Who are your favorite authors?
I love fiction. I’m inclined to southern voices, in particular Kaye Gibbons, Lee Smith, Janis Owens, Joshilyn Jackson. I enjoy anything atmospheric, something that transports me and reminds me of the stories I loved in my childhood. Characters that grab me with their voice.
All are wonderful writers. What are you working on currently? 
I’m working on another southern mystical work that involves a lot of American history, some of it very obscure. I love to find that strange little detail, something forgotten or especially something intentionally hidden, and see what happens when you sit it out in the light. This story is set in the southeast, mostly in Virginia. But I’m not saying more than that yet.
The story sounds very intriguing. I can't wait to read it as well--once you're finished writing it and it's sold! Any new releases? 
This Mother’s Day I have a short piece of fiction in an anthology entitled Sweeter Than Tea, May 2012, Bellebooks.
Gorgeous cover!!
Where do you get your ideas for your stories?
I am a great observer – yes, that is a nice word for a snoop. It’s my one true talent. I notice everything and I have a memory like an elephant. If I’m looking at you, I’m not remembering your name or what you write or how our kids know each other. I’m figuring out other things, little idiosyncrasies that distract and fascinate me about people. I remember what people were wearing on the playground in first grade. I remember certain conversations word for word. It takes forever for me to memorize a pin number or an address, and I’ll forget your name as soon as you tell me, but I’ll always remember your face. I’ll remember expressions and freckles and the way you chewed your lip, and how that started a story in my head.
Dreams, sometimes. I have crazy vivid dreams that are long and convoluted and I remember them like movies or memories and make people listen to me recall them in awful, boring conversations where I’m the only one who cares. There are scenes in The River Witch that came straight from dreams.
I also analyze everything to death. It makes my husband crazy. I fixate on places that have histories and wonder about the people who lived there. Or a person will catch my attention, and before long I’m all worked up about whole lives and families I’ve imagined attached to them. And this goes on for years sometimes before I figure out what to do with them. At other times, a character or a story can come from memories or experiences I’ve had, or been told about. Then I think it’s just a matter of my brain trying to work out why people are as they are or why the world is as it is, until I’m satisfied enough to start wondering about something new. Until I get bored.
Your dreams and overanalyzing sound familiar. And I'm with you on the names and PIN number memory loss. *grin* How long were you trying to get published before you got the “call?”
I came out of the womb trying to get published, I just didn’t know it until my first short piece was part of an anthology eleven years ago. I wrote it and sold it in a matter of a week and a half. I had no idea what I was doing. After that I wrote several pathetic novels, found an agent, submitted my work for years and grew frustrated at the very encouraging rejections from NYC. Some editors even called to speak with my agent about my future work, but no one wanted what I was submitting. I took the last novel and revised for two years, eventually leaving my agent and submitting it to a small press. I sold the novel myself and began working with my current agent the same month.
I am so amazed at your PIRATE writing skills and selling skills. After a while a writer might have to take the work she/he's trying to sell into her own hands. I'm glad you did because now you have this new release and a brand new agent who believes in you! How did you celebrate the new book contract?
I cried over bar-b-que and a box of donuts.
Awe. Sweet. Was the “call” an actual phone conversation or an email or a snail mail?
It was an email.
Do you have an agent?
Yes, I’m working with the most fabulous Jenny Bent of The Bent Agency. I cried over that call, too. I was on vacation with my husband and kids and I took the call in my hot car in a Florida parking lot, looking out at the ocean. I jabbered at her like an idiot and she was very gracious. I’ll remember that moment all of my life.
Sounds like she's a perfect match for you! What advice would you give aspiring writers?
Write the story you imagined under your bed covers as a child, the one that thrilled you and kept you up all night, giddy and full of wonder.
Great advice. What is the most difficult part about writing for you?
Trusting the process. That’s kind of like trying to convince a woman she doesn’t really want an epidural because the natural process of labor is beautiful and rewarding, but seriously, it’s true. I keep trying to read something or watch some presentation that will give me the secret, but that’s just stupid. No one writer’s process is the same just like no two books are the same. There’s no use rushing it. I’m a global thinker and I have this broad idea, a kind of amorphous vision of a work and I want to get to the finished piece in this neat, controlled way that never happens. I have to force myself to relax in the bog of my imagination until something floats to the top that I can latch on to. And all that time, I’m convincing myself I’m not crazy. I have to know that I’m going to come full circle, and that I am an idiot kind of writer who is going to do it all the hard way. And then I have to hope I’m eventually going to be smart enough to write the book of my dreams, because when I’m writing I always know I’m not smart enough. I have to let the book teach me something first.  
I'm glad I'm not alone in learning to trust the process. But in the end you have a wonderful book and that's what is great about developing our own methods of madness. Thank you so much for coming to the Veranda and sharing your story, Kim.
Best of all, today a lucky commenter has a chance to win THE RIVER WITCH. I'll post the winner on Wednesday!

Kimberly lives north of Atlanta, where she has been for the last eight years. A former actor and 
special needs educator, she spends much of her non-writing time working as a Pilates instructor, 
enjoying her husband and three children, and encouraging storytelling in all its many forms. 

On Sale April 30, 2012

Monday, April 16, 2012

Two Hats: One At A Time

Before the writing became a FULL time job without pay (unless you count quarters in a decorated tin can) I was a mother. I am still a mother. But the Senior graduating teen hasn't really wanted me to "hover" over her during this year (that's a blog for all mothers right), so I have tried really hard to let her go and leave her to her devices.

Great? Right? But the thing is she is still a 17 year old and she is still my teenager. So occasionally the Momma Cap has to come out and be slipped onto my head so I can focus on launching her out the door and into the world.

Not an easy launch. I have major writing deadlines which, while I am NOT getting paid, require a lot of my energy. I write 4-5 hours a day, workout, do all the normal things every housewife does, and I look after the family.

Now it's college crunch time. We have had a lot of letters come in from the colleges. I had folders. I admit, I didn't read them all word for word cause the chick hadn't made up her mind about where she was going for sure until a week ago. And, as life would have it, in waiting to decide she may have forgotten to send in her letter for the Honors College. We don't know. She got the information in February. It was an online form. She thinks she filled it out. But we haven't received paperwork.

And a MONTH ago I was laying in bed having mini panic attacks about all the "what ifs" and how does this online college stuff work because I never went to college until I was 22 and things have changed a lot since I graduated. But I was told, "don't worry and quit hovering" so I tried not to interfere.

Suddenly there is a crisis. Now who gets to fix it? Oh, that would be ME because writing is not as important as fixing this problem. BUT what I don't like about this is I ASKED A MONTH AGO ABOUT THIS STUFF and there WOULD BE NO PROBLEM if people hadn't pooh poohed my concern.

And that includes the PHYSICIST. So this is my mini rant. I am not happy about this situation. I am wondering what else hasn't happened. I have lost hours of sleep over this and I really didn't want to deal with this while I am working on my revisions, but that's life. Kid first, writing second. That's just the way of it all.

Nora Roberts said there are glass balls and rubber balls that we juggle. Glass balls include family and kids and real life issues. This is a glass ball that I have to keep in the air.

Dusting? Laundry? Those are rubber balls. Guess what? Neither are getting done today.

What are you juggling and keeping in the air when you're not writing? What stops you? Oh, and how do you get back on track? I do it by telling myself I MUST WRITE 3-4 hours minimum per day. I will complete that task even if I have to go past my usual STOP time.

What's your solution to life interferences?

Friday, April 13, 2012

Blog Debut Novel Winner & Random Romance Writer Ramblings

Hi Everyone, I'm thrilled to announce that blog commenter Jane has won Tracey Devlyn's debut novel. Jane, I need to get your contact information to forward to Tracey and we'll send you the book! Way to go and congratulations.

Meanwhile, back at the Revision Ranch life is moving very slowly. The characters are talking, but the process is going slower than a gnat treading through molasses. This is the issue: I have learned a lot since I completed the novel last year and I want to reflect that in my writing. A year ago, I'd have sent it with minor changes. Now? Not so much. I've cut 3000 words but added 11,000 words to bring my word count over the 50,000 needed for Mills & Boon. But that is well within the criteria for the other request I have for the same full novel. So that's good news. I'm over the hump, so to speak... but I have 3-4 more chapters to plow through.

And all this revising makes Christine a very dull blogger. I haven't time for anything but revisions and looking after my family! The house is taking a dive, big dive down into the dumps, but who cares? I'm writing and fulfilling requests.

I must be getting close to the end of this first huge pass through of revisions, because I woke up this morning with ideas for my next NEW book HOT NIGHTS WITH HER UNDERCOVER BOSS. I've been reading and analyzing many category books in the DESIRE, RIVA, SPECIAL EDITION and PRESENTS lines. All of this has made me realize that SIMPLE IS KEY. My plot for HOT NIGHTS was too complicated. Made for an interesting story but made for a harder romance to write. Frankly, when one only has 50,000 words or less to build a story, there is NOT room for complicated plots.

And I am good with that knowledge. There are people who see writing category books as easy. Trust me when I say that writing these books is NOT easy. And some people want to use publishing category books as a way to get into publishing the books they really want to write. I think that's fine, but move over because I WANT TO WRITE THESE BOOKS. I loved reading them when I was a teenager and young mom. I love reading them now. I have other books in me, but they are dark and mean and evil and filled with monsters and shadows and demons. Will I write them? Maybe, but the whole reason I read Harlequin and other contemporary romances is because I wanted to escape the real monsters in my life.

I hardly want to look at those monsters again. Would you? Ultimately, I write these books to escape and hopefully one day people will read them and have a wonderful time tuning out their own monsters.

That being said. A random happening made me remember an event in my life that I believe could lead to a big book one day. So I'll write down my thoughts about it and go from there. Meanwhile, I am very content and happy to write my darling category romances with alpha heroes, strong heroines, great romps, and lovely happy endings. These are the stories of my heart.

Are you writing the stories of your heart? What kind of stories do you like to read.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Break Out the Bubbly and the Dark Chocolate: Celebrating Tracey Devlyn's Debut Novel A LADY'S REVENGE

Hi Everyone, I'm pleased to host one of my fellow GIAMx4 sister writers on the Veranda today. She's celebrating her debut novel A LADY'S REVENGE. Please join me in welcoming Tracey Devlyn to the Veranda. And best of all, if you comment you win a chance to have her book!!
Debut Author Tracey Devlyn
Tracey, we all have different stories about how we became writers. What's yours?
My path to becoming a writer started when I began to envision different endings to the books I was reading. For many years, I consumed 2-4 romance novels a week and, somewhere along the way, the book didn’t end at page 400. Different endings would plague my thoughts until I would redirect my mind to the next book on my shelf. Then one day, a scene of a woman tied to a table in a dank dungeon flashed through my mind, clear and vivid. For the first time, I wrote down my thought. I’ve been writing ever since.
I love that path to writing. And a great scene, too! What is your favorite genre to write?
Historical romance. The Regency era is probably my favorite time period in the subgenre, with the Victorian era a close second.
When you write are you a plotter or do you follow the muse?
I’m still working through my writing process, but I’d say I’m more of a plotser. In the beginning, I sketch out the characters and the backbone of the story (as far out as I can see). Then I take my newly created road map and start driving. Sometimes I’ll get curious and take a side trip, and other times I’m creeping through a thick fog and can only see a few feet in front of my vehicle.
Your method sounds very similar to mine. I wish I was more methodical, but we have to do what works best. What is your current project?
In about another week, I’ll start drafting the third book in my debut Nexus series.
Any new releases? 
Gorgeous cover!!
Yes! A Lady’s Revenge, my debut historical romantic thriller, released April 3. This is the story of a British secret service agent who flees her French captor only to fall in love with the decoder responsible for her imprisonment.
Where do you get your ideas for your stories?
Honestly, I have no idea. The concept for A Lady’s Revenge came to me in a flash scene. The other two books in the series grew organically from the first novel.
How long were you trying to get published before you got the “call?”
When my editor called me on April 20, 2010, I had been writing for four years.
How did you celebrate the “call?”
My family took me to my favorite Italian restaurant, where I ordered pasta puttanesca. Yum!
Do you have an agent?
Yes, I signed with my agent within a day of getting The Call.
What advice would you give aspiring writers?
Never stop believing in yourself, put your nose to the grindstone and block out the white noise, network your heart out, establish a daily writing schedule and stick to it, buy the RWA conference CDs and listen to EVERY workshop--even if it doesn’t pertain to what you’re currently working on, don’t get involved in the negative crap, and surround yourself with guardian angels.
I've never listened to all the conference workshops. That's excellent advice. I will do that now. What is the most surprising thing you discovered after you received the call?

The silence. I imagined a flurry of emails would take place over the next few months, but after only a couple of days, I heard nothing but the slow creep of time passing by. J
That's funny, Tracey. I would have imagined a flurry of activity as well. What is the most difficult part about writing for you?
The black void. Beyond the midpoint and before the climax is nothing but darkness. It’s really disconcerting to right toward the edge of an abyss and not know if a solid ledge will be there to catch you or not. If you’ve ever seen the movie Indiana Jones and the Holy Grail, you might recall the scene where Indy is standing at the edge of a cavern. Across the gaping whole was the Holy Grail. All he had to do was have faith and take a step. If he had enough faith, a solid path would open before him, leading him to his heart’s desire. Not enough faith? A long plunge to death. Step by step is how I’ve been approaching my writing, with tons of faith thrown into the mix.
Oh, I know that black void well. Usually I go through it during revisions. What encouragement can you give writers who face rejection?
Read the rejection letter and see if there’s a morsel of good you can pull from it, then shove it in a file folder. If you’re hearing the same thing over and over, take a harder look at your manuscript. Talk to seasoned authors—they’re an incredible resource, especially when it comes to brainstorming ideas. A rejection letter from an agent or editor that has several paragraphs of thoughts and recommendations is your golden ticket to publication. In my experience, if they go through the trouble of conveying that much detail, they see something special in your writing. Listen to what they have to say and revise. Seriously. And finally, NEVER stop submitting.

Christine, thanks so much for inviting me to chat at Veranda View!

You're very welcome. I wish you loads of success!!!
Please leave a comment for a chance to win a print copy of A Lady’s Revenge (U.S. and Canada only, please.)

Tracey Devlyn writes historical romantic thrillers (translation: a slightly more grievous journey toward the heroine's happy ending).
She’s a member of Romance Writers of America, International Thriller Writers, Australia Romance Readers Association and the Windy City, Beau Monde, Women’s Fiction, and PASIC Romance Writers of America chapters. Tracey’s also co-founder of Romance University, a group blog dedicated to readers and writers of romance, and Lady Jane’s Salon-Naperville, Chicagoland’s exciting new reading salon devoted to romantic fiction.
An Illinois native, Tracey spends her evenings harassing her once-in-a-lifetime husband and her weekends torturing her characters. For more information on Tracey, including her Internet haunts, contest updates, and details on her upcoming novels, please visit her website at: