So it’s officially May and I can’t quite wrap my head around it. But time and desperate circumstances require that I do.
I have to admit that though I’ve been what I think is incredibly busy these last few months (delusional much?), I have not been anywhere near as productive as I’d like to have been and now, once again, I’m feeling backed against the wall to get pretty much EVERYTHING done within the next few weeks before school is done for my twins and summer officially starts.
Oh and while I’m at it can I possibly write a story of two too?
So with that said
Welcome MAY! Good Times ahead.
Tell me are you, like me, feeling the pre-summer crunch or are you sailing easy into the new season?
All the best,
Thanks for all your support of the #WeNeedDiverseRomance Tee campaign. I have started it up again for new orders so those who didn’t get in on the 1st round can still order and get a tee before Nationals this summer.
Click below to place your orders:
BTW I’m wearing my shirt to RWA Nationals on Thursday, July 23rd which is the day of my workshop. Feel free to join me and wear yours that day too!
Happy Valentine’s Weekend!
I hope you are having a wonderful one filled with plenty of sweets and your favorite sweetheart 🙂
You all know that I’m a big advocate for diversity in romance and to speak to that I’m proud to have been invited to participate in a Romance Writer Chat #RWChat on twitter this Sunday 2/15 with the fantastic Alisha Rai to talk about diversity in the romance industry. If you are around at 7PM EST please hop on Twitter and join in as we’d love to have you. You know my motto: #WeNeedDiverseRomance Hope to see you there!
All the best,
Happy New Week!
So I’ve done all the blizzard prep I’m doing and what I have, I have and what I don’t, well, I don’t. Right about now it’s pretty much sit and wait time. I hope wherever you are the weather is kind and if not you’re warm and dry.
During this storm, as long as I have power (and if I don’t I have notebooks) I plan on working on my current WIP which truth be told has been my longest WIP ever. It’s a story that came to mind many years ago and when I got it I was so excited that I plotted it out and was ready to dive right in. Well, once I started I felt that it was a little (see a lot) more challenging and complicated than I anticipated and maybe I bit off more than I could chew. So I put it aside and wrote another book. Then that other book written I pulled the complicated WIP out again…. stalled again, put it aside and wrote yet another book. This process went on and on, the tough book haunting me while I went on to write and publish 3 more books!
What was stopping me with this book that I could write other full books while stalling on this one that I KNEW I wanted to write? Was it fear? Was it believing that I couldn’t do it?
Well the time is here that I MUST finish this book or lose my mind in the process. Giving up is not an option (well, it is an option but not one I’m happy with). Who knows if it will ever get published, but I know there needs to be a THE END or there won’t be any peace of mind for me. Wishing me luck peeps. Time for me to start believing and get to doing.
All the best,
This for sure.
No, I’m not doing NanoWrimo but I need to do my own form of some sort of marathon/ get it together writing sprint.
You see I’ve been in a fog and a funk, but it’s time I clawed my way back to the light before the hole sinks too deep for me to come out of. My lists of potential projects is starting to feel like it’s getting bigger then my actual potential so instead of dreaming about new ideas I’d better get to actually finishing up some of the old ones. If I don’t, this rambling mind of mine won’t get a bit of peace and right now that’s what I need most.
Wishing you all a wonderful and productive week.
All the best,
image from tumblr
I don’t do well when confronted with myself. Ultra critical, when I look in the mirror it’s the faults I see first, though I’m probably not all that special in that regard. But wait, it goes further. So cringe worthy is my self-reflection, that I find the sound of my own voice, intolerable and I won’t even do the recording on our home’s answering machine. That said, you can imagine how I feel about doing public readings or private ones for that matter, as I loathe the sound of my own voice even more when it’s chiming my own words back at me. Taking every flaw that was a mere whisper in my mind and scraping it out, long and slow like nails shimmying then quick skipping along a chalk board.
All that said, still, many months ago I went and entered my self-published book BOUNCE in the New Jersey Romance Writer’s Golden Leaf contest. The contest where the winner is announced in a crowded ballroom, full of edge of their seat romance writers waiting with baited breath to hear the winners words being read by the iconic, Anne Frazier Walradt. Why would I do such a thing? Me, a person with severe stage phobia who also doesn’t like to hear her own stories read aloud? It makes no sense.
Well, the answer isn’t all that deep. You see, I’d been the New Jersey Romance writer’s conference many times before and like so many others I always wished I was one of ‘the ones’. Those chosen special few who for that year got to get the applause, but more than anything got to have their work read so beautify by Anne. Each passage a perfect literary triumph. So I entered, and this is where it gets a little confusing, because if truth be told, I’m sure I entered, despite my phobias because I well and truly never expected my entry to get very far. You see I entered expecting to lose. I’m a wisher in the worst sense of the word. I make my wish and instantly negate it with a ‘and that will never happen’ on the back end on the wish.
So long story short I entered. I entered and I made a halfhearted wish upon my entry, I’m sure backing it up with my seal of doubt and then I let it go. But then, way later, a strange thing happened. I got a call that I, me, well someone by the name of K.M. Jackson had finaled in the contest. It was a total OMG, Snoopy dance and then what in the world can this really be real moment. The Universe must surly be playing a joke on me. Someone had took my wish and broken the seal of doubt. My system was good and truly wrecked.
But I went with it. And pulling up my big girl pants I, for the most part, slipped it to the back of my mind, telling myself that I was a not one of ‘The Ones’. That this was great and great was as good as it was gonna get so just roll with that and be happy. When friends told me to prepare an acceptance speech I laughed at them, saying what was the point. Preparing a speech took my wish and edged to closer to the dream category and dreams have a way of wiggling under your skin, making you put work behind them as you think they could possibly come true and I wasn’t ready to let that happen. Remember my phobias and I was fine with wishing ThankYouVeryMuch. So while I was wishing I was mentally working on my perfect Oscar clap and smile for the real winner for when I didn’t hear my words read by Anne.
Finally, it was the big moment. I was sitting with my friends, trying my best to look cool as we were waiting for my category to be called. I had it all together in my head and if things would go according to my fool proof unscientific calculations there was no possible way I could be the winner. I had my clap and smile ready and waiting. The Wisher was firmly in her lane. But then it happened. Anne walked up to the podium and I heard the first few words …
“Sean reaches over and pulls my body in close to his, cradling my backside into his groin. He’s sleeping soundly, but his erection is strong and wide-awake.”
Holy crap, she was reading from BOUNCE! I inwardly groan with embarrassment as my inner critic raised her hand to poke me in the ribs (who in the world opens a book like that?!) while at the same time my heart leaped with joyous pride. This was it. This is not my wish moment but my dream coming true. There were cameras and eyes turned my way but all I could hear was my own voice telling myself to focus. Just listen to Anne. Hear the words that I wrote. And you know what? They never sounded so good.
Thank you to Anne Frazier Walradt and the New Jersey Romance Writers for a night I will cherish forever.
And for making a Dream come true.
All the best,
P.S. Thank you to all who entered. The Winner of my Creative Hearts Giveaway is Jackie Roberts! Congratulations Jackie. Please email me at kwanawrites @ Yahoo. Com with your information so that I can send you your gift card.
It was truly the most Golden of nights. I can’t thank my fabulous RWA/NYC chapter enough for honoring me with this year’s Golden Apple award for Author of The Year. An award so amazing that I’m sure I’ll spend the rest of my life writing to feel like I’ve actually earned it. But hey, it’s in my house now and it has my name on it so I’m not giving it back. I’m going to write on, inspired by of the glow of this magical Golden Apple.
Maybe I’ll stop sleeping with it and let the DH back into bed in a week or two? Maybe…
Thanks once again to my RWA/NYC chaptermates and congrats to all the winners!
All the best,
This… is so true in in my line of work and in life.
I’ve always been a curious. As a child my family will tell you that I was constantly questioning how things worked and why things happened they way they did. A conversation with me was never a short one as there was always and extra “but why?” to follow what probably should have been the end of a conversation. This practice has continued into my adult life (I’m sure to the joy of dear DH) and served me well as a writer and as the parent of young adults. I am always questioning and digging a little deeper to find out why people think and act the way they do as I come up with new characters and plots.
Tell me are you the curious sort? Do you enjoy digging a little deeper into a good mystery? What are some of your favorite whodunits?
Wishing you a great week ahead.
All the best,
Happy New Week folks!
I’m ready to dive into my current WIP. It’s a fun one about a reluctant bride and a surprise be groom. But I woke up thinking about Gabby, my heroine from Threads of Desire and what’s she’s up to. I do that at times as if my characters are real people out there in the world. Gabby was such a fun character to write since she had such a big voice in my head that sometimes could not be contained. But in writing there is this thing called editing and it’s up to the editor to contain that voice and like many writers I keep a file of my deleted scenes so I thought I’d share a bit of Gabby with you today from a (secret) deleted early scene from Threads of Desire to give you a little glimpse into her world. I hope you enjoy it.
Crap. It’s your own stupid fault for getting into this mess, Gabrielle Russell thought as she once again tried to scoot out of Donovan’s too tight grasp. It was hot, both inside and out, with this sudden burst of a summer heat wave and Gabby was starting to feel like she was suffocating from all the plastic covering the woman’s suits in the sample closet that they were currently pressed into the back corner of. Her lip curled. It was downright sordid the way they were tucked back there making out like every couple from every made-for-TV movie where the wife gets her revenge in the end.
It wasn’t that Donovan was such a bad a guy, or that he was married. Oh, God no, definitely not married. Without the proper sanctioning of his mama, the girl’s meatball recipe passing muster, and probably the purchase of a home lot right next to his parents’ out on Long Island, there was no way Dono was walking down the aisle. He was too much of a mama’s boy for that.
Suddenly the vision of Dono’s mother bursting through the hanging plastic, shears in hand, gave Gabby a shudder. True to form, Donovan took it as a sign that he was hitting the right spot, his tongue lapping quickly at her ear. Sadly, he was not. “Oh I love it when you shake that way, baby,” he murmured.
Gabby’s eyes rolled heavenward, where she spied cracks in the ceiling and a water stain near the steam pipe in the shape of a canned ham. She let out a sigh and worked on giving a number to Dono, tagging him mistake #97in a long line of many. Her lip twisted again as she started working on a way out of this closet and out of this mess.
Dono had been eyeing her on and off (okay, mostly off) for the three years she had been working at his father’s company, Zenia Fashions. (Side bar: if you have to put the word fashions on the tail end of your company name chances are it isn’t all that much of a fashion company.)
“You sure you don’t have some Italian in you?” he’d ask in an attempt at flirting, taking in Gabby’s toasted caramel skin, his eyes squinting at her naturally curly hair and the freckles that sometimes peeked through her foundation.
“No, Donovan, I told you before, I’m a Black girl. You know, African-American. Sorry to disappoint you but, nothing any more exotic than that.” Gabby was sure if someone traced far enough back in her family tree they’d probably find all sorts of ethnic backgrounds dangling off limbs, but who had the time—and besides, she was not about to jump through genealogy hoops to placate ol’ Dono.
But with her recent diet Dono had upped his interest, going from the gloss over to the “I’d definitely tap that” in the space of a few weeks.
Gabby had gone from a size 18 down to a curvy 16 that she could jackhammer into a stretchy 14—which on her tall frame was something she could work with like she was mother effing Naomi Campbell. Well, that was if the foundation garments were right and the attitude was in check.
Either way, she’d been feeling swanky having picked up said sausage skirt off the rack in the so-called “regular” department (as if the week before she’s somehow been an irregular species) and said yes to his lunch offer—after all, he’d promised it would be a business lunch.
And they had talked business. Dono knew that when she’d been hired by his father, Giovanni, he’d pulled her in with a promise of a new line and an updated look, but Giovanni had continued to blame money troubles, price point, sourcing, or just anything and everything, and as of now the whole thing was put on hold. Gabby was ambitious and wanted more than anything to bring Zenia into the here and now, thus pushing her own name out of low level obscurity. She’d had enough of the slinky fabrics and out there prints. It was time to move on. But it seemed no matter what she tried she couldn’t get away from the back room and the unglamorous life of fashion on the D list.
Rule #87: At steak lunch, go easy on the steak and even easier on the bread. You’ve been on beets for weeks and your brain is muddled. You’re liable to go for anything—such as looking goofy and nodding with a stupid steak and bread grin on your face when your boss’s son runs his hand from your bare thigh on up to your Spanx. You will only feel like a fool when you end up in a closet with sequins on your behind.
For a half a second Dono shifted and the lapping tongue went from inside her ear to just behind it to that sensitive little section that made her nerves tingle all the way down to… oh freaking hell. Her mind did a jump and instantly she was no longer in the sample closet of Zenia Fashions at 1407 Broadway—no, she was over ten years back in the past in an oversized walk-in at the posh Dean of Admissions house at Bonnersville State. Gabby frowned, trying hard to push the memory aside, silently cursing the fact that it came back so easily.
Mistake #1 in the long line. Head of the line. Well, maybe he wasn’t mistake number one, no, she wouldn’t give him that (that honor would have to go to her ill-advised crush on a particular ’90s icon with a penchant for high tops both above and below), but Nick was the one who always came to mind when the numbering started. The one that had hurt the most, but still the one that had taught her the best.
Nick had made her that weekend. Changed her. Took her from the naive girl who thought there was actually a man out there for her, one who she could trust in this world, and turned her into the always jovial though jaded woman she was today. There was no trust. No real love. At least not for Gabby. It was the same ol’ same. Use what you got to get what you need. Get in, get out. Keep it moving.
Gabby sighed as Dono’s hand shimmied up toward her breasts. She moved back involuntarily, hitting plastic covered polyester, and her lips curved into a wry smile as she thought of her own stupidity. How in the hell had she done it again? Coats at her back and a hard man at her front. The first time, she’d welcomed it. She’d been young, naive, and living in the land of hope. But all that had come of it was her ending up pulling lint off her ass and squelching down humiliation as Nick left her with a sorry shrug and nothing more than a “how do you do” in the stark light of day, blaming it on the alcohol, the circumstances, whatever. Yeah, she knew better.
She bit at the inside of her cheek. It would probably be the same with Dono. To guys like him she wasn’t an outside type of girl. Not one to show off to friends or bring home to Mama. But yet, here she was. Stuck between a pipe and a hard place.
You can get your copy of Threads of Desire by just clicking here or on any of the links on the right. Thanks.
All the best,
The fabulous and super talented Michelle Monkou tagged me in this writing process blog tour and as I do with all tag type things I froze but then realized we were not playing freeze tag so there you have it. I’m it… So RUN! No don’t run, sit a bit and read on about my process and how this writing thing works for me….Enjoy.
What am I working on?
But the thing about the world being your oyster and all means the possibilities are endless and oh boy pretty shiny thing over there. But no, I must focus and work on one project at a time (Well maybe two). This year I’ve got a fun romantic comedy brewing and I’m working on a sequel for BOUNCE so there is all sorts of sexy fun suburbia intrigue coming that way.
How does my work differ from others of its genre? I think the difference in my work, like what others have said before me, is voice. People say all the stories have been told and I don’t know, for the most part that may be true. But I do know the stories have not been told my way. It’s always fun for me to find a new author with an exciting and new voice and I hope that now some folks are getting that feeling in my works too.
Why do I write what I do? I’ve always been a dreamer, making up stories in my head. I’ve also always been a fan of romance and contemporary women’s fiction so writing in this genre was a natural fit.
How does your writing process work?
Can I just say it’s a mystery?
As for work? I don’t know how well it works. I’m always looking for ways to streamline it and write now I’m taking a fantastic Scrivener class given my Gwen Hernandez to help me get my many writing thoughts into a more organized contained place.
I’d like to get to the point that I wake, up sit at the keyboard and the words flow like spring rain and not my usual open laptop, sit and stare. Blink. Go to kitchen come back. Sit, stare some more, reach for the faraway word. Write a sentence. Stare at screen. Walk to kitchen again. Go back to computer. Turn away. Flip TV on then Off. Check emails. Oh wait, Twitter! Look at clock an hour later panic then write a few hundred words. The character’s voices now too loud to be ignored a moment longer so I must write and quiet them down until the next day’s noise.
Yeah I’m thinking this process can be improved on dramatically. There are many stories to write and a smooth process will help it a bunch.
And now with me being it an all I have the fun job of tagging other writers so that they can share their processes with you. So I’m now tagging…
Synithia Williams: Synithia Williams has loved romance novels since reading her first one at the age of 13. It wasn’t until 2010 that she began to actively pursue her publishing dreams. Her first novel, You Can’t Plan Love was published in August 2012 by Crimson Romance. When she isn’t writing, this local government gal, works to improve air and water quality, while balancing the needs of her husband and two sons. www.SynithiaWilliams.com
Jeanine McAdam : : Jeanine McAdam is a writer of twenty-five romantic short stories, a few spicy anthologies and three cowboy books. Telling stories about imperfect people finding perfect love is her thing. She’s currently writing about bull riders and the spunky urban women who love them in her Skirts and Spurs Trilogy. www.JeanineMcAdam.com
Falguni Kothari: Born and bred in Mumbai, Falguni Kothari currently lives in New York with her family and an utterly spoiled dog. She’s the author of BOOTIE AND THE BEAST (April 2014 via Harlequin Mills and Boon,) IT’S YOUR MOVE, WORDFREAK! and SCRABBULOUS IMPRESSIONS, a short story. www.FalguniKothari.com
All the best,
This past weekend I had the pleasure and the honor to engage in a call-in book club chat with the women of STCC (Sisters Thoughts From Coast To Coast). I was thrilled when I found out months ago that they had chosen my 1st book in my creative hearts series: THROUGH THE LENS as their pick for the month of February.
Kudos to these women! What a cool and innovative way to have a book club and to connect with readers that share your interest across the country. We had a call in time and access number for the chat and yes there were indeed Sisters talking coast to coast, ranging from New York to California. The moderator asked questions of the group related back to the book as did I and they asked some probing questions of me about my ideas and motivations for the story and characters and what I had coming up next. But my biggest thrill was finding out what moved them in the story which was at times eye-opening as you never know what will hit with a person. It just may not be the part that hit with you as a writer.
I wanted to say thank you so much once again ladies of STCC for having me. It was such a pleasure and I hope to meet many of your at Romance Slam Jam or the Romantic Times Convention in New Orleans this year! I’m on my way! You can find out more about STCC here.
And my dear bloggy friends if you’d like to hear more about what I have going on now, today I’m thrilled to be interviewed over at The Write Way Café. I’m taking about my career path, my current book and what I have coming up next. Please stop on by!
Now tell me are you in a book club? Where do you get your reading recs?
All the best,