Finishing Lily’s Story

It’s hard to believe it has been so long since I’ve posted anything in here. Life has been crazy busy and I need to devote more time to my writing and myself. This new job I started back in October is extremely demanding and I am usually mentally drained by the time the weekend comes, but I really want to get this final book in my series finished. Lily’s story needs to be wrapped up, you all have waited long enough. 

Some of you will love how the story goes in this last book and some will hate it. I hope in the end, you will all love how her story ends. Let’s just say, what you expect to be isn’t necessarily going to be.

My really hope to have this book finished out by the end of April, I have probably 3 chapters left to write. After it is finished, I have plans for a new character, a new story, and all will be told in just one novel for her. It will not be anything like Lily’s story, but I am sure you won’t be disappointed!

For now, I leave you with that because the final chapters are not going to get finished unless I’m writing them. Have a wonderful weekend and enjoy spring!

Turmoil and Writers Block

It has been a couple weeks I think since my last post. I have been struggling with my writing due to some personal things taking up brain space. Any other writers have this problem? Sometimes the problems or stresses of life can really mess with your mojo when it comes to pen and paper.

As a writer, I have a responsibility to my readers to not let this become a habit, so I decided I would take a deep breath, clear my mind, and focus today on making something happen, both here on my blog and in my third book. I wanted to update you on my progress. Right now I am starting chapter six and I think that will be about half way through. I need to get another chapter down if I want to get this last book of my trilogy written and published before the New Year. It is so much more in-depth than the first two, and as challenging as it is to write, I am really enjoying the way it is unfolding. I really think you will too. I can’t wait to get it out there so everyone can enjoy the three books together and get the end of Lily’s story.

This last book has twists and turns no one would see happening, I didn’t even know this was the direction I would go when I started the series. Isn’t it funny how our characters and story line can take on their own form? I love that about writing, you never know where you may end up going with something until you start.

I will do my very best to keep you up to date on my books and any new information I come across that may be of interest to my readers or fellow writers. I hope you all have a great week and if you haven’t picked up my first two books, please check them out on Amazon. The links for both books are on the left side of my page.

Thank you!!

Update on Book Three

Good morning and happy Friday! I hope you are doing well today. We have sunshine and blue skies with perfect temps at the moment. We are still tracking Irma as it could have an impact on us or it could miss us completely, just depends on how she goes. Fingers crossed she continues to weaken and there’s minimal damage for those in her path.

I am starting chapter four of my final book in my Crimes in the Bayou series. I have decided to make this a trilogy instead of four books as I had originally planned. Trilogies seem to be very popular and with them being shorter books, it will be easy for people to read one or all three fairly quick. I also made some changes that made a trilogy a better choice for this series.

I love that I am adding some new story line to this final book, giving my readers a little dialog from both the criminal side as well as the investigation. I kept the first two more from my main character, Lily’s point of view. I wanted to add more to this final book.

Since this is my first series, I am still learning my style and will continue to change and evolve in my writing. I really enjoy what I am doing and I really hope that my readers continue to enjoy it as well.

You can pick up the first two books on Amazon and the third will be available as soon as I am finished. Thank you for all your support and have a wonderful and safe weekend!

Motivation

I have to say, this week has been a difficult one for me. I sat down Wednesday to start the third book in my series and got my first chapter with a little over 2,000 words down, that is far less than I normally achieve in a day. I took yesterday off as I had other priorities with my husband home working locally we had a few things that needed to be taken care of. Today I sat down to write and maybe got 1,500 words down. I just don’t feel motivated. Do any of my fellow writers relate to this? Some days flow easily and it’s hard to stop for the day, other days it’s a struggle to get any words on the paper.

I have the book planned out in my head, I’ve done the research, and even had a few pages of notes before I ever started typing. I should be able to put so much more down in a day, but I am just struggling with the words and the flow of the story. I find that when I take a day or two off from writing, it’s harder to get back in the swing of things. Anyone else have this issue? What steals your motivation? What do you find helps?

I would love to know what you all struggle with when you write and what works best for you. Do you work towards a certain number of words per day or what do you make your goal for the day? I don’t usually look at words necessarily, I usually try to write about two chapters a day, this week I have only managed one and half. Do you have a quiet place you can get away to write? Or do you like some noise? Music maybe? I have an office set up and my writing area faces the window which usually helps me think, but I can hear the TV and phone calls in the rest of the house, which I think definitely distracts me. I like it completely quiet when I write and it just hasn’t been this week. What kind of atmosphere do you work best in?

I am hoping my motivation returns tomorrow and I am able to get a few chapters in over the next couple of days. I truly hope you all have a productive and enjoyable weekend and I look forward to seeing your comments!

Secrets On Bourbon Street – Sneak Peek

Secrets on Bourbon Street cover for paperback-frontGet your copy on Amazon Kindle here!

My alarm goes off, I jump in the shower and throw my robe on. I need a cup of coffee for sure this morning. I tossed and turned until about midnight. Not good. I picked out a black pant suite with a white sleeveless blouse and low healed black wedges. I know I will probably be on my feet a lot today and I want dressy but comfortable shoes on. I think I have everything I need. I’m about a 30-minute drive to the field office if traffic is normal.

I get to the office and check in; Special Agent Barry Fields meets me in the lobby of the building and escorts me up to his office. “Good morning, I’m Special Agent Barry Fields, I’m the guy you report to.”

We get to Barry’s office and Corbin is there waiting. “You remember Special Agent Corbin Dubois from your last case in Dax, he will be your new partner. Today he will be showing you around, you have some paperwork and some other details to go through this morning, but later this afternoon, we will be bringing you up to speed on the newest case you have been assigned. Any questions Special Agent Martin?”

“No, I don’t believe I do, thank you Special Agent Fields.”

“Great, and you can call me Barry. We prefer first names around here, no need to be formal unless the situation requires it.

“Corbin, start by giving her a tour of the place, explain how things are done around here and then show her to her office. Everything you need for this morning is on your desk. And welcome to the FBI Lily.”

“Thank you.” I reply as Corbin motions me to follow him.

“Well, what do you think so far Lily?” Corbin asks as we continue our tour. The building is a few stories high, rather large. It’s a good thing we aren’t touring the entire building, just the areas I will need to know. To tour the entire building would take all day.

“I think it will take a bit to remember where everything is, I have to admit, I was really nervous driving in this morning, but I am feeling a bit more relaxed now that I’m here.”

“Good, I know you will be an excellent agent, you finished the top of your class at Quantico so the sky’s the limit for you Lily. I’m sure some wondered why you didn’t choose one of the East Coast Field Offices. You could have gone to any of the top offices, but you still came here, I’m glad you didn’t change your mind.”

“Well, honestly, it had a lot to do with Dad being the closest to this office. That was the biggest factor, but yes, I felt I had an obligation to New Orleans, and you. I had given up any ideas I had about joining the FBI until you showed up in Dax to help with that case, so I feel I owe you.”

“I’m glad you’re here, you’re a great addition. So now that we are done with the tour, this is your office. Mine is right next door. If you have any questions my office line is already programmed into your phone as is Barry’s, but you can always pop by if you need anything. I will leave you to it. After lunch, we will meet back at Barry’s office. Meet me in my office at noon and we can go to the cafeteria together.”

“Ok, great, thank you Corbin. I better get started on this paperwork and getting settled in a bit.”

***

I knock on Corbin’s office door, he motions me in, he’s just hanging up the phone. “You ready for lunch?”

“I am, did you get everything finished?”

“I did. Now I’m starving. Tell me they have good food down there.”

“They do, I think today is soup and sandwich with a drink for $5. Pretty good deal if you ask me.”

“That is considering what drive-thru is anymore.” We get to the cafeteria and there are so many people, it’s almost overwhelming. “Does everyone take their lunch at the same time around here?”

“No, this is the busiest time though, they are open for breakfast at 7am and stay open for lunch until 2:30. People come and go throughout those hours. There is coffee and drinks over there, the coffee, tea, and water are available all day and free of charge. They charge for soft drinks so those are locked after 2:30. You have your different counters with different food options and some pre-packaged items for people in a hurry in that cooler there. I will meet you at the end of the counter over there and we can find a seat.”

“Ok that works, which way to the soup and sandwich?” I walk to the end of the line and Corbin heads to another counter.

We meet up after we get our trays and head to a table near a window.

“We will head over to Barry’s office after lunch. I know he is eager to catch you up to speed on this case we have been working on.”

“Great, I am ready to get back to working real cases again. I learned so much at Quantico and I am ready to use what I learned in the field.” I really have missed real detective work.

“Speaking of Quantico, what did you do on your two weeks after graduation?”

“I spent a week in New York with my boyfriend, James, flew into New Orleans to find an apartment and then drove home to spend time with my dad and pack the rest of my stuff. My apartment wasn’t available until Friday so I spent all day Friday and Saturday unpacking and getting settled. Saturday night a bunch of us met up for a night out since I have no idea when I will get another one.”

“Sounds like a busy but fun couple of weeks. A new boyfriend huh? Was he at Quantico?”

“Yea, he was in the same class, he is in D.C. which makes things a little more difficult, but I think he’s planning to come down on Friday.”

“My experience with long distance relationships is they are difficult, especially when we work in our line of work, but I hope the best for you. Do you like your new place?”

“I love it. I have open ceilings and hard wood floors. I got a top floor unit with an amazing view off the balcony. And it’s a straight shot to work.”

“Sounds great, my place does have hard wood floors, but no great view. I live downtown in an older loft apartment. I’m not home much so it’s alright. Plus, I did get a great deal on the rent when I moved in a couple years ago and so far, they haven’t raised it on me. That’s a plus. You ready to go?” Corbin pushes his chair out and we both take our trays to the garbage container, stack our trays and head to Barry’s office.

The Pains of Self-Publishing

This week has been a rough one. We said goodbye to our eleven year old Lab, Shadow on Wednesday. He finally just gave up and told us it was time. None of us were ready of course, but it was the best for him. Our other fur-babies have also been missing him.

Even with the stress and pain of the week, I was able to finish the second book in my series. I am waiting on editing now and have spent the past two days creating the cover. Has anyone else found this to sometimes be the most difficult process? I am just thankful for having a photography background and experience with editing software. I really feel for those who don’t have that or have to pay extra for someone else to do it for them. The hardest part for those of us self-publishing, is not earning as much as we would like when we first get started and yet paying out money for services we can’t do ourselves. I am so thankful for what I am able to do myself, but look forward to the day when I can pay someone else to do the tedious tasks so I can stay focused on the writing.

I am hoping to have this new book on Kindle by the end of this coming week. We will see how much editing needs to be done before I will have a definite date though. Keep watch here, I will be posting the announcement with the links here in my blog!

In the meantime, here’s a few photos of our sweet Shadow. We miss him so much!

Why I Write

I started writing some poetry in high school and always kept a journal or diary, but I really started writing regularly during a dark time in my life. My mother was killed in a car accident in 1992 when I was expecting my first son. I first started writing letters to her and writing in my journal about her and my pain. Then in 1996 I turned to poetry.

I believe writing saved my life. Between the depression of losing my mom and having horrible postpartum depression, I destroyed my life, my marriage and hurt those I loved the most over a course of only a few years. Writing was my only outlet for my feelings. I felt no one heard me, no one understood my pain, how could they, I didn’t understand it.

I would like to think I inherited my passion for writing from my mom. She had been a writer and wrote beautiful poetry and short stories. She made a book for her dad and now I have it. She never published any of her work, but our family knew how good she was. I only wish she would have shared her work with the world.

My first published poem was about her, the loss and pain I felt every day. I received the Editor’s Choice Award for that poem and I keep that book on my bookshelf as a reminder that even in my darkest times, I did something good. My second poem published was about my first son, the struggles I felt as I went through divorce and the pain I felt watching his confusion and not knowing why mommy was so sad all the time.

Those were dark days and writing got me through several years of pain. I haven’t written much poetry the past several years, but I have started to again in the past few months. My dream has always been to write books and poetry, but it just never seemed to happen. My husband has helped support that dream and pushed me to make it happen. I’m so thankful that he did.

My days are much brighter now then they were in the early ’90’s and I have so many beautiful things to be thankful for and to write about. I hope to share a book of all my poetry with the world one day.

For now, I am mostly focused on my current book series about a girl named Lily and the crimes she is solving. I hope you check them out. Look for my second book in the series to be released soon on Amazon Kindle.