Preorder Without You, It’s Not Christmas

“Without You, It’s Not Christmas” is now available for pre-order on Amazon for only $1.99!

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I am also now listed as an author on the Leap of Faith website. (I fell through the cracks. Oops!)

I just sent a new story to my editor, so hopefully I’ll have details on that soon!

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Happy New Year! 

  

A dear friend and I have agreed to write at least 400 words a day for 2016. That amounts to just over 150,000 words. (Actually, she is planning to write about 700, but I feel that if my goal is a “measley” 400, I’ll have a better chance of meeting my goal. 

I’ve already reached 400 words in my fanfic, Black Tie Affair for the day. At this pace, I should finish it in about 3 months, though I’m shooting for much earlier. 

I must say I’m pleased to start 2016 on such a positive note. I’m a morning person, so I always prefer to get things done early. I feel like that gives me a better possibility of success. 

Goals As Motivaton

  
There is only one more day left to this year, and while I can say that this has not been my easiest or calmest year, it has certainly been a year in which I learned a lot. I don’t do New Year’s resolutions because I made a resolution many, many years ago not to make another resolution, and I’m still keeping that one. However, I do think it is important to set goals and work towards accomplishing something. 

This year (2015), I had planned to write and publish two stories to double my 2014 publication of “Christmas Vacation.” To my slight disappointment, I was only able to publish “Without You, It’s Not Christmas.” Nevertheless, I think it is entirely possible that I can publish at least two stories in 2016. I’ve actually got three pieces that need a home. 

Matchstick Houses is a novella about a middle-aged multimillionaire who seeks out a matchmaker to help him find the man of his dreams. Naturally, his plans fall apart. 

“Overtime” is the story of an overworked cop who unintentionally neglects his husband. The universe gives them both a wake up call. 

And my untitled fic is a little ditty about two men who fall in love over a dog walking incident. It’s fluffy. 

I’m sure I’ll write way more than this next year, but I just like voicing my goals. Bring it on, 2016. I’m ready for you. 

Without You, It’s Not Christmas

New release!

  
Nik and Jordan are about to spend the holidays apart for the first time in their relationship. Neither wants this, but Jordan’s two kids will be devastated if he’s not there for Christmas. So amid tears, hugs and I love you’s, the two part and Jordan gets on a plane for California. All either can think during the week apart is that it’s just not Christmas when they’re not together. Will the two lovers make it through the long week? Will a Christmas surprise neither was expecting make the separation worth it all?

Buy it here!

From the ashes 

I’ve finally come back to myself in a manner of speaking. I feel better than I have in months, and it’s definitely had a positive impact on my writing. It is, as I told a dear friend of mine, like I’m “finally back in the driver’s seat.” 

For years, I’ve always tried new “techniques” for writing more, better, faster. I remember a few years ago that I decided I needed to be situated at a very small desk with absolutely nothing else on it in order to get my ideas flowing. I’ve tried morning pages and outlining. What I’ve discovered is that I need to be comfortable. It’s not (for me) necessarily about being “in the mood,” so much as keeping my mental health stable enough to be in the mood to write all the time. I know there are plenty of writers throughout the years who have famously written through addiction to drugs and alcohol. I am not one of those people. 

I still find myself incredibly comfortable with a pen in my hand. Writing longhand is something that just feels so right that I’ll never stop. Yet, as I type this, I’m using a wireles keyboard and my iPhone. The most important part is that I’m reclined on my couch, and I am comfortable as  bug in a rug. I remember learning how to write (not that I hadn’t done it before) in first grade, and my teacher was showing us the “proper” posture for writing and how to hold a pencil. To this day, I use an “appropriate” 3-fingered grip, but my eraser points way too far to the right side, when it “should” be pointed over my shoulder. What difference does that make, anyway? It’s not like I’m going to be any less prone to carpal tunnel syndrome because I’m holding a pencil this way or that. Comfort, I’ve found, is the most important thing when one is writing.  

Battling perfectionism

I get so caught up, so so caught up in things being “right” and “correct” and “like this,” that I just end up doing nothing. Really, it’s my perfectionism that gets in the way of so many good things.

On ZenHabits, Leo wrote about how the best way to start a habit is by doing it, even if you fail. He said that Henry Ford perfected the first Model-T by just “shipping now.” I’ve always been so against that concept, especially because I send out some of my fanfiction that is so not done, so not ready, and like I knew it would, it bombs. But I don’t think the important part is that I sent out a perfect product the first time; I think the important part is that I send out a product. It’s not that I’m trying to send out some sub-par garbage just to make a buck. It’s that I’m trying to learn something about the process, about the writing, and about myself. I’m trying to improve. I think that if you send it out there with the right intention, then you’ll get the right response.

Last week, I went home to Iowa. I was there for eight glorious days. It was the best trip home I’ve ever had, and it truly felt like a vacation. I read three books while I was there: Lamb by Christopher Moore; Happy, Happy, Happy, by Phil Robertson; and Good Call by Jase Robertson. Oddly enough, all three books were heavy on Christian themes, and they helped me to affirm my belief in Buddhism. (Weird, that, I know.)

Being home helped me slow down and unplug.

I’m reconnecting with myself in a way I don’t know if I’ve ever felt.

I do what feels good and listen to my body.

I’m breathing more and watching the sky. Today, I saw vultures. Yesterday, I saw ducks.