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June done: July eep

The last words of my previous blog post were, and I quote, ‘I’m hoping that as part of my writing-life balance, I’ll be updating this blog more frequently. Until then!’

Ha!

That did not happen. Let’s have a look at why.

June Goals:

  • World-build, re-plot and write No One Ever Saved the World by Being Nice. World-built, redid plot twice, and got 50% through No One Ever.
  • edit The Last God. Did not even open once.
  • present a workshop to RWNZ Christchurch about Writer Self-Care. Done! This might have been what saved me.
  • work on my writing-life balance Hmm…
  • Research for Gentlemen Don’t Murder. Totally forgot about this one.
  • Plot Seasonal Stories 2018. Nope!

Not on my list but also happened in June:

  • Car breaking down, requiring waiting hours for assistance, an expensive bill, multiple trips to the garage and lots of waiting around.
  • Losing five hours of work and three quarters of my picked flowers to a frost.
  • Encountering a major plot problem with No One Ever that requires rewriting about 10,000 words and retooling my existing plot (again)
  • Car breaking down again, stranding me between house sits with no car and thus no way of transporting my stuff from old house to new house until tomorrow at the soonest.
  • Two days of being sick.

I also came down with a bad case of ‘everyone has it worse than me so I shouldn’t say anything-itis’ which did not help anything. I did not even realise how bad I had it until my sister asked if I was free Tuesday and I mentioned the having to walk half an hour between houses thing, and she was all ‘what, why did you not tell me about this, we can help’ and I realised that yes, even when other people have stuff going on, they still care about my stuff which is really stupid, but I managed to forget that–let’s put that down to June.

This June was also gunning really hard for the record of least amount of sunshine hours ever recorded in June in Christchurch–we saw the sun for fourteen hours the first two weeks of June. That’s an hour a day. That’s ridiculous.

What kept me sane during all of this?

My writing friends. In particular, Sera Trevor and Anne Barwell who messaged me throughout my June ordeal, despite both having June ridiculousness of their own to deal with. The RWNZ Chch crew were fantastic too, particularly in their generous sharing of resources to help with writer self-care. And huge thanks to the Word by Word members last week who were kind enough to commiserate on my really awful week (if only we’d known that was the start!).

 

So far July is going better! Unfortunately, since I did not finish so much stuff in June, it all carries over, along with a side of going to the Marlborough Book Festival. Maybe I can relax in Aug  September!

July goals (I feel silly posting these as I know they’re not all going to happen but…)

  • Finish, rewrite and edit No One Ever Saved the World By Being Nice
  • Edit The Last God and submit to Tor
  • Outline and draft Ibiza Remixed aka Holiday Story 2018!
  • Stay on top of competing real-life commitments
  • Self-care

To help me make as much progress towards these goals as I possibly can, I’m going to continue to be scarce on social media (ie. Facebook). This wasn’t intentional, but it has been helpful, and if it helps, go with it! I’ve also turned off a few alerts on my phone and switched off my alarm. I live dangerously. Who knows what hour of the morning I may sleep until?

 

 

May Done: June to-do!

May was just as busy as anticipated! I see I left off a major event in last month’s planning post—the birth of my nephew! To be fair, no one was entirely sure when Nephew would arrive, but he is here, he is lovely, and he is working his parents hard.

The other major event for May was taking up flower picking. My parents have a small commercial flower garden, and are too busy to pick at the moment, so I’ve been taking on picking, processing, packing and delivering the flowers. While this takes me away from writing for two days, I think this is actually really good for my productivity. I don’t have very good phone reception in the garden itself, so for a good chunk of the day I am out of communication with the outside world, and that alone makes the flowers worth it. Then there’s the birds, the landscape, the fact I’m doing something physical and outside… I come back to my writing feeling refreshed and enthused, and that is great.

All that extra thinking time helped me come to a few conclusions. I need to get better at stopping my volunteer activities from taking over my writing time. One of the ways I’m considering doing this is by scheduling my e-mail/social media time, as well as my volunteer things, and not looking at them outside their allotted time period. I’m going to be trialling this in June–Let’s see how successful I am!

May Goals:

  • Publishing Morgen Prince! (May 12th)  Done! I am really pleased with how Morgen Prince was doing. 
  • Finish The Last God. This is a high-fantasy story set in Ancient Times, and I’m hoping to finish it to submit it to Tor in July. This novella is a teaser for a longer series, so hoping it goes well! Done! It now needs editing, but overall I am very happy with it.
  • World-building on No One Ever Saved the World by Being NiceI started, but did not get very far. 
  • Research for Gentlemen Don’t Murder. Again, I started, but didn’t get very far. It was hard to balance other writing projects with the intense focus needed to finish The Last God.

June Goals:

  • World-build, re-plot and write No One Ever Saved the World by Being Nice.
  • edit The Last God.
  • present a workshop to RWNZ Christchurch about Writer Self-Care.
  • work on my writing-life balance
  • Research for Gentlemen Don’t Murder.
  • Plot Seasonal Stories 2018.

I’m hoping that as part of my writing-life balance, I’ll be updating this blog more frequently. Until then!

New Release: Morgen Prince

It’s been a while since there’s been a new story in the Deep Magic series! I’m thrilled and excited to finally be bringing you Morgen Prince—Duhywynt’s story.

This was a steep learning curve for both Duhywynt and his author! I’ve ventured out of gay romance into the wider LGBTQ spectrum, learning a lot about myself in the process. Duhywynt’s been challenged, and if he hasn’t exactly risen to the occasion, he has, in true dramatic morgen fashion, given it his all. I really hope you enjoy the story as much as I enjoyed writing it!

Keep reading for a peak at the first chapter!

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Gorgeous cover by Bree Archer? Check!

Duhywynt’s only weapon against the world will cost him everyone he cares about.

Duhywynt plans to spend his summer catching the legendary Ceffyl Dŵr and swapping make-up tips with his best friend, Myfanwy—until he discovers his older brother has traded his morgenau heritage for mortality. Worse, Myrhydion is far more concerned with Duhywynt’s lack of social life than his own untimely demise.Duhywynt will do anything to avoid losing him for ever, even if that means faking a friendship with Drew, a tourist.

 

As Drew’s fascination with Duhywynt grows, the prince discovers the deadly legacy of his morgenau heritage, emperilling his relationship with Myfanwy—a relationship with depths he is just beginning to understand. Can he overcome centuries of pain and embrace the unknown, or will his morgenau heritage claim another victim?

Morgen Prince is available on Amazon.
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April Done: May To-Do

I just made my to-do list for May. Let’s just say I will not be bored! My awesome niece is having not one but two birthday parties, a Puffin Party for family and a Pony Party for her friends. I’ve been invited to both. Then I’m helping celebrate Ngaio Marsh’s birthday party, attending writing seminars, an RWNZ chapter meeting–all this in addition to my regular schedule of babysitting and volunteer obligations.

With all this going on, you’d think I would do the smart thing and put writing on the back burner, right?

Well, as it turns out, I’m in a really neat place with writing so I’m going to throw smart out the window and see how far I get. My writing goals for May include:

  • Publishing Morgen Prince! (May 12th)
  • Finish The Last God. This is a high-fantasy story set in Ancient Times, and I’m hoping to finish it to submit it to Tor in July. This novella is a teaser for a longer series, so hoping it goes well!
  • World-building on No One Ever Saved the World by Being Nice.
  • Research for Gentlemen Don’t Murder. I got some excellent feedback that made me realise I’m not as near to publication-ready as I thought. I’ve got a lot more reading to do, but the possibilities that it’s opened up are really fascinating.

While I tackle my to-do list, I’m going to be trying to spend less time online, so you’ll probably won’t see me again until June.

Until then!

Writing Update!

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I heard back from Kindle Scout about the results of Gentlemen Don’t Murder’s campaign! The bad news: my campaign was unsuccessful.

The good news (and this is very good news) is that when I do publish Gentlemen Don’t Murder, I can alert everyone who nominated it of the release through my scout campaign page. I had no idea this was an option, and so am very excited about the chance to reach that audience!

The really special news is that I’ve had some lovely messages of support during the campaign and since it ended, and I feel like I’ve made some new friends! I’m really happy with how Gentlemen did—1200 page views, 23 hours in hot and trending—so I feel really positive that when I do release it, it’s going to go well.

Unfortunately, I’m going to push the release back. I’m also not going to be having a release this month. February was a crazy month, and while March has also been quite hectic, I think I’m finally getting things under control again. I have a lot of work in front of me, and while I feel like I’m making progress, I will make better progress by taking some of the pressure off. I’m going to make up a revised publishing schedule once I’m back in the writing swing of things and can make a better informed guess at my schedule. Thanks for your patience as I get myself sorted out! I really appreciate it.

Dead Wrong Tour #5—guest post and review!

I just got the loveliest surprise. I went over to Bayou Book Junkie, the final stop on the Dead Wrong tour, and discovered that in addition to my guest post, Mari reviewed Dead Wrong. What a fantastic way to end a blog tour!

To read Mari’s review, a guest post from me about why I love Dead Wrong’s extended cast so much, and your last chance to enter the giveaway for a Ninestar Press voucher,  head over here!

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