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Archive for August, 2016

Writing Wednesday: Back to School

The kids went back to school yesterday. Loving the quiet in the house during the day.

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Still working on settling into a routine that works for me. Right now, I’m working on writing goals first thing in the morning, those will shift slightly starting tomorrow since I’ll be moving back to a focus on drafting, though I’ll still be doing some editing and plotting. I’ve been working my way down my to-do list and if I finish everything for the day early, I start on the next day’s goals. So far this week, I’ve been doing good at staying ahead.

Our little firefighter

Our little firefighter

It’s Wednesday, so time for another WiPPet snippet! I believe last week I said I was sharing the last snippet from Shed Some Light. Well, I guess I was lying. Since it’s the last thing I was working on(besides polishing Stained by Ashes), I’ll have some more of it for you this week. I have 12 paragraphs today(8+3+1=12). Carlos is just realizing Tereza is in some trouble. And Toby shows up.

“She said she wanted to clear her name, from the ethics issue and any connection to Damon or Brent’s deaths.”

“Bullshit,” Carlos spat the word. “She doesn’t give a damn about this. She knew I wanted to go after Maxton. She was trying to do this before I did.”

I know,” Toby said softly. “I also know Kogan put it out that he wanted to get his hands on her. I warned her.”

“He’s got her,” Carlos said. “I went there, and he taunted me with it. I couldn’t believe she’d let herself get caught by him, though. I told myself she wouldn’t go anywhere near him. How could I be so stupid?”

Toby reached out to put a hand on Carlos’ shoulder but seemed to think better of it at the last moment. Probably a good idea. Carlos wasn’t sure just what it would take to make him snap.

“Go home, Carlos,” Toby said, already pulling his phone out. “I’ll get her.”

“No,” Carlos said, pushing away from the door. “He already has her. Who knows what he’s already done to her.” He’d said his men had orders not to hurt her. That wouldn’t apply to Maxton himself, though. ‘I have to get to her.”

“No,” Toby said sharply. “You have to leave this to us. Otherwise I’ll be pulling you both out of there.”

“I can’t let anything happen to her.”

“I’m already calling it in. Just leave it to us, Carlos.”

“No,” he said, brushing past Toby. “I’ve let her down too many times already. I can’t do it again.”

Toby swore behind him, but Carlos was already jogging down the steps. He didn’t care. All that mattered was getting to Tereza. Getting her safe. He’d worry about the consequences later.

Uh oh. Not looking too good, is it?

On to my progress on the last of my goals for August. I’ll have separate goals for the rest of this week at the end of this post.

  • Write 3000 words – 3275 words/3000 words. All on Shed Some Light – He heaved out a breath, but could hardly drag in any more air. And fuck, it hurt.
  • Stained by Ashes – Polish – I’ve made it a good way through the list of words to search for. Shouldn’t have a problem finishing it this week.
  • Defending the Heart – finish outlining – just finished this yesterday. Can’t wait to start writing
  • Side projects – add 1200 words – 1637/1200 words.
    • Dance with the Devil – 1071 words – “It’s not gonna be a smooth ride, but I’ll get you back as fast as I can. Just hold on to me, Damon,” he said, his voice cracking. “Don’t let go. Please don’t let go of me.”
    • Snow White Twist – 566 words – She could have sworn she’d seen her stepmother’s face in the water. Tarian must be rubbing off on her. Now, she was seeing danger in every shadow. It’s not the way she’d like Tarian to rub on her.
  • Read: Writing Vivid Characters – finish – finished this yesterday
  • Listen: Rough Justice(Sarah Castille) – finished listening to this. Another one that left me with mixed feelings. Not sure if I’ll continue the series. Started listening to A Rogue Not Taken(Sarah MacLean), which I’m really enjoying.
  • Read: Radio Silence(Alyssa Cole), Summer Nights(Susan Mallery), Summit of Seduction(Elena Aitken) – finished Radio Silence(really enjoyed) & Summer Nights(enjoyed). About 25% through Summit of Seduction.

Now, as it’s the end of the month, I’ll be evaluating my progress for that, too.

Plotting:

  • Defending the Heart – Finish Outline – As I said above, this is done

Drafting:

  • Protecting the Heart – 5000 words or finish 1st draft – 5828 words and finished 1st draft
  • Closing Time – 5000 words – 3727 words/5000 words
  • Shed Some Light – 5000 words – 10411 words/5000 words
  • Break on Me – 5000 words – 1893 words/5000 words
  • In the Moonlight – 5000 words – 2584 words/5000 words
  • Dance with the Devil – get to 15000 words – got to over 17000 words
  • Snow White Twist – get to 10000 words – got to over 11000 words

Revising:

  • Stained by Ashes: Compile beta notes, start revisions – done & done & on final polish
  • Healing the Heart: finish CP revisions – done & started polishing to send to betas(which I’m still looking for if anyone’s interested)
  • Guarding the Heart: Finish 1st revisions – haven’t even started
  • Come Back Down – Finish polishing – done
  • Midas’ Daughter – Read Through & Revise – done & done & submitted

Reading:

  • Listen: 8 audiobooks(already in my audible library) – listened to 9/8 audiobooks
  • Read: 25 books – read 22/25 books(should be 23 by the end of the day)
  • Read: Writing Vivid Characters(Rayne Hall)  – finished this

Overall, it was a pretty good month. Now, looking forward to the next month.

Plotting:

  • Toby & Denise(Gilbert, CO #6) – Outline
  • Jess & Terrall(Kurztown #5) – Outline(you may have seem me mention the idea I wrote scenes for in my head while on the motorcycle. That’s this one)

Drafting:

  • Write 30 stories for Story a Day
  •  Shed Some Light – finish 1st draft
  • Closing Time – add 17,000 words or finish 1st draft
  • Break on Me – add 9000 words
  • In the Moonlight – add 11000 words
  • Defending the Heart – add 11000 words
  • Dance with the Devil – add 3000 words
  • Snow White Twist – add 4000 words
  • Patrick & Sarah – add 500 words
  • Tavin & Haiwee – add 500 words
  • Roman – add 500 words

Revising:

  • Stained by Ashes – finish polishing & publish
  • Healing the Heart – Send to betas
  • Guarding the Heart – Revise
  • Goin’ Down – Revise & submit

Reading:

  • Listen: 9 audiobooks
  • Read: 25 books
  • Read: Writing Active Hooks – Books 1 & 2(Mary Buckham)

As for the rest of this week:

  • Write 6000 words
  • Stained by Ashes – finish polishing
  • Toby & Denise – finish brainstorming, start back stories
  • Side Projects – add 600 words
  • Read: Writing Active Hooks: Book 1 – 20%
  • Listen: The Rogue Not Taken(Sarah MacLean) & Lord John and the Private Matter(Diana Gabaldon)
  • Read: Finish Summit of Seduction(Elena Aitken), The Night We Said Yes(Lauren Gibaldi), Service with a Smolder(Eliza Madison), & Winter Court(SM Reine)

Teaser Tuesday: ‘Fighting Dirty’

I have one more teaser from Stained by Ashes. I’m just going through the final polish of this, so I probably won’t be sharing any more from this. The good news: it will be available to read fully soon. This week’s teaser picks up right after last week’s. Here it is:

Louis didn’t have any hesitations in fighting dirty. Even as Adam pinned his legs to the ground, Louis was digging his thumb into Adam’s wound. Everything around him went a bright white, and a scream wrenched out of him. Somehow he kept his grip on Louis through it.

As his vision cleared again, Louis’ hand reached up toward him. Blood covered his fingers. Wet, sticky blood. Adam’s blood. More of it would cover the ground soon if he didn’t stop this.

He ignored the hand reaching for him and shot his fist into Louis’ jaw. The other man’s head knocked back, but he only had a moment before Louis was heaving him off. Trying to, at least. Adam held on. Until Louis reached for his face, his thumb trying to gouge out Adam’s eye.

Adam jerked back, and Louis’ nail scraped the corner of his eye. It still brought a stinging pain, and blood painted Adam’s cheek from Louis’ other fingers. He shuddered a little, then plowed his fist into Louis’ stomach before leaping to his feet. He got ready for Louis to come at him again, but, a scream came from the cabin.

Leah.

He turned back, worried what Louis would do while his back was turned. The other man was already scrambling into his saddle. Lucas sat slumped in his own saddle, glancing between the two of them and the cabin.

“Your daughter is in danger, and you do nothing but sit there,” Adam said, contempt dripping from his voice. “You disgust me.”

Louis was already racing off, and for a moment, Adam thought about chasing him down. Leah needed him more right now. He started to run toward the cabin, pulling out his own gun, but pain sliced through him with every step. Blood ran down his side, and he clamped his free hand over it, wishing that was enough to get it to stop. He wouldn’t let himself bleed to death before Leah was safe. It couldn’t happen.

Is Adam going to be okay? Will he get to Leah in time? Or will she save herself? You’ll have to read the whole story to find out. 😉

Sunday Summary: Birthday Weekend

Busy, busy weekend. Friday night when my husband got home from work, we headed up to the city. First up: hair cuts for the kids and me. The girl only got a little trimmed off. The boy got his mostly buzzed off. wp-1472392931822.jpg

Mine…well…

before & after...as you can see, quite a difference

before & after…as you can see, quite a difference

It feels so good to have it short again. It’s been more than ten years since it’s been this short. Then, we got dinner, and groceries, last minute birthday stuff for the boy’s party, and new shoes for school.

Yesterday we had niece’s 8th birthday party. Sister-in-law held it at a pond near their house. The kids spent almost the whole time swimming in the pond. I even asked the girl if she wanted to get out to eat, but she firmly told me “no”. She finally did, ate some food(mostly veggies and fruit), and after her cousin opened presents, went right back into the water. She may be part fish. 😉

After we got home, I baked cupcakes and once the kids went to bed, wrapped the boy’s presents. This morning, I’ve submitted a short story to the World Unknown Review, frosted cupcakes, cleaned up all the surfaces that become catch-alls in this house, and blown up a few balloons. Less than 3 hours until the boy’s party starts, and there’s just a few more things I need to get done first, so decided to take a break to work on this post.

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  • Write 5000 words on any of 4 projects – 5016 words on 2 projects
    • Shed Some Light – 3224 words – “I don’t know what you’re talking about. I heard he died from a fight in prison. I couldn’t have had anything to do with that. I’m not the one who got myself locked up.”
    • Closing Time – 1792 words – Gio’s lips moved then, forming some words. Cam might have thought they were ‘Thank you, God,’ but that could have just been wishful thinking.
  • Stained by Ashes – finish beta edits – finished these – added 2909 words to this.
  • Healing the Heart – Polish – made progress on this.
  • Guarding the Heart – layer in world building details – didn’t do any of this yet. Maybe next month.
  • Defending the Heart – write Spenser’s back story, start plot summaries – finished the back stories, plot summaries and have the first act outlined.
  • Side projects – add 2000 words – 2356 words between all 5 projects
    • Dance with the Devil – 934 words – “We didn’t have anything to do with that,” I said. “If you just let me get through, we can all forget any of this happened.” Not that I would. I’d be reporting it to Icarus and Bull the first chance I got.
    • Snow White Twist – 1026 words – All she could think about was the way she’d reacted to Tarian’s touch. And the way Tarian had reacted in return. Had there been something there, or had she just imagined it?No. She’d never had quite that good of an imagination.
    • Patrick & Sarah – 106 words – Her face was still drawn in hard lines, but he thought her eyes had softened with…confusion, maybe. Just how had people been treating her in the years since her husband had died? Patrick had fought in the war, too, and had seen plenty of men fall. Men who had left widows and possibly even orphans. He’d never worried about helping any of them before. But, something about these two pulled at him. He couldn’t explain it.
    • Tavin & Haiwee – 137 words – Tavin’s face flushed hot at her question. He didn’t need her seeing him being a lumbering oaf. Some of the men said he seemed like he was part mountain goat at times. Right now, he felt more like a bear.
    • Roman – 153 words – His boss studied him carefully then finally nodded. “All right. But you tell me if it gets to be too much, Ro. Don’t drown yourself with it.”He lied with a straight face. “I won’t, [xx].”
  • Submit Midas’ Daughter – just did that this morning. Now to wait. Won’t know anything until November. So, moving on to the next I plan to submit.
  • Read: Writing Vivid Characters – 90% – got to 93%
  • Read: The Broken Hearts’ Society of Suite 17C(LeighAnn Kopans), Hope Smolders(Jaci Burton), Far Too Tempting(Lauren Blakely), Daring Miss Danvers(Vivienne Lorret), Grimm Consequences(Kate Serine), Snake Heart(Lindsay Buroker), & Radio Silence(Alyssa Cole) – Finished Broken Hearts’ Society(loved), Hope Smolders(enjoyed), Far Too Tempting(had some issues which I discussed on Wednesday), Daring Miss Danvers(really enjoyed), Grimm Consequences(loved), Snake Heart(really enjoyed. Love the interaction between Dak and Yanko). Only about 16% into Radio Silence.

Pretty good week overall. Hoping next week will be as well. I have the goals figured for the rest of this month. I’ll have different goals for the second half of the week on Wednesday once I figure out next month’s goals.

  • Write 3000 words
  • Stained by Ashes – Polish
  • Defending the Heart – finish outlining
  • Side projects – add 1200 words
  • Read: Writing Vivid Characters – finish
  • Listen: Rough Justice(Sarah Castille)
  • Read: Radio Silence(Alyssa Cole), Summer Nights(Susan Mallery), Summit of Seduction(Elena Aitken)

WeWriWa: ‘In the Face’

Welcome back to another visit with the Weekend Writing Warriors, the blog hop for anyone who likes to write. Still sharing from Dance with the Devil(probably will be for a while). I skipped ahead a few paragraphs from last week, but Devil’s still in town, and he’s run into some trouble. Here’s 8 sentences:

I planned to walk around them, or even better turn and ride back out of town. But, that comment was more than I could take. It didn’t matter what order Icarus had given. Hell, it could have come straight from Chief. I wouldn’t have heeded it at that moment.

No one talked about Hawk like that. Not in my hearing.

I turned, took in his tag, [xx], then punched him in the face.

Welp. That’s not looking too good. Just what did the guy say to piss Devil off? And what’s going to happen now(well, what do you think would happen in a 3-1 fight?)

Stream of Consciousness Saturday: “You’re/Your”

Time for another Stream of Consciousness Saturday post. Today’s prompt was “your/you’re/yore” I’m almost finished with the plotting for Defending the Heart, but it was a couple other characters who jumped into my head this morning. I didn’t think I’d be writing their story yet. but, they’ve convinced me it need to move up in the line. I don’t have any of it plotted yet, but I did write out some parts of scenes in my head one day while we were on the motorcycle. So, there’s that.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

You’re really going to do this?”

Terrall ran one large hand over his head while he held the phone to his ear. He felt the bristle of the hair growing back in. Not shaving it all off again might be the hardest part of deciding to change himself. “Yes, Mother,” he said, trying to hold on to his patience. He should have known better than to answer the phone when he saw her number. “We’ve already discussed this.”

“I still do not see why you won’t just come home. You don’t have anything to make up for.”

Only because your sense of entitlement is too large to let you see it. “You know exactly what I need to make up for, Mother. I would have done it seven years ago, if you hadn’t pulled all those strings.”

“Well, did you really think I’d just let my baby boy rot in a jail cell?”

He moved his hand down to grip the back of his neck. “I deserved to be there, Mother. That’s the point you’re not getting. I didn’t deserve everything I got when someone else-”

“Enough, Terrall,” she said, her voice sharp. He knew better than to argue with her when she took on that tone. “You’ve brought enough shame on us by that public spectacle last summer. Now, you’re back in that backwards town. It is only asking for trouble.”

“Lieutenant Berman  has given me an opportunity here. He could have just written me off after what happened. Instead I have a chance to give back. I don’t see why you have such a problem with that.”

“If you bring more shame to us-”

“I don’t see what could be more shameful than me walking away when I left one person dead and the other broken.” Doren likely wouldn’t like being described that way, but hopefully it would get his point across. “Nothing I do will make that right, but I can at least do everything I can to balance the scales a little. I’m doing this, Mother, no matter what you say about it.”

There was a sharp sound then…nothing. He pulled the phone away from his ear and looked at the screen. Yeah, she’d hung up on him. Not all that surprised, he clipped it back onto his belt.

“Parental expectations can be hell, can’t they?”

He spun around, his gaze latching onto the woman standing a few feet away on the sidewalk. She looked familiar, but he couldn’t place why. “You eavesdropping on my conversation?”

One corner of her mouth tugged up. “I just stepped out of the store there and caught the last part. I don’t know what it was about, but I understand disappointing your parents.” He didn’t like what he saw flash through her eyes, but he didn’t know how to make it go away. Then, she was sticking her hand out. “Jess Amadeo. Haven’t I seen you around?”

He gripped her hand in his much larger and darker one. “Terrall Shreeve. I haven’t been here in over a year, and I don’t live here.”

“Strange. I thought you looked familiar. Well, I have to get going, but maybe I’ll see you around. Hope you can work things out with your mom.”

“Thanks, but that’s unlikely.”

She smiled at him then turned and walked away. Well, maybe there was more than one reason to stick around here for a little bit.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I may have trouble with this one. Drunk driving is one thing I have trouble finding any sympathy for. And yet, somehow, Terrall has burrowed his way in. So, I guess we’ll see if he can find any redemption.

Fiction Friday: Come Back Down – Chapter 3

We’re nearing the end of summer. Just a couple more days and my kids go back to school. Nope. Not counting down the hours. Not at all. 😉

For now, I’ve put the next chapter of Come Back Down up on Wattpad. A little warning for this one, there is mention of past sexual abuse in this chapter. In case that’s triggering for you and you want to avoid it. Anyway, here’s the first part of the chapter:

I wrapped my arms a little tighter around Trace’s waist, my legs hugging his hips, as he took a sharp curve in the road. We’d stayed in town for nearly another five hours. Even after we handed out the last of the bundles and baskets. There were so many who needed help with things around the house. Things they couldn’t do themselves, didn’t have the time to do, since many worked at least two jobs, and could barely afford to hire out. That’s what this whole thing started as shortly after Dad joined the Riders.

I always wondered if one of those he helped was my mother. From what he knew, what he’d told me, she’d lived in this neighborhood before I was born. That was the first time he’d helped her, when she was still pregnant with me. That led her to leaving me on his doorstep when I was nearly four months old, and she realized she could no longer take care of me.

Probably the best thing she’d ever done in her life.

Trace set his hand on my knee, and I wondered if he’d felt me tense up. Thinking about this always filled me with that tension. I didn’t know a lot about my mom, other than her name, but Icarus had never hidden any of it from me. She’d come to see me once, when I was a lot younger, but he’d never heard anything from her again. Legally, I was Icarus’ daughter. By abandoning me, my mother had given up all rights to me. She couldn’t take me back from him, and I’d never worried much about it. Now, I was eighteen, so it wouldn’t matter anyway.

Trace squeezed my knee, and I hugged him a little tighter, letting him know I was okay. I pushed all thoughts of my mother out of my head, so I could enjoy the rest of the ride back to the clubhouse.

When Trace stopped the bike in front of the garage, I slipped off and pulled my helmet off then waited for him. As soon as his helmet was off, I stepped forward and his arms came around me. I pressed against him, hip to hip, as his mouth crushed against mine. I loved the thrill of the ride. I had to say, this was the best part. I already felt how revved up he was by all of it.

And that’s all you get for now! I’m so mean. 😉 If you want to read the rest, you can find it here or catch up on the first two chapters.

 

Writing Wednesday: One More Week

Okay, technically less than a week. Kids go back to school next Tuesday. Nope, not doing a little dance of anticipation AT ALL. Also, I’m a terrible liar. 😉 This year, both kids will be in school all day. people keep asking me, “What are you going to do with yourself. Won’t you be bored?” And I just have to look at them and go, “do you know me at all?” I crave the silence of an empty house. We have the boy’s Kindergarten orientation on Thursday, two birthday parties this weekend(one of them being the boy’s instead of doing it over Labor Day weekend), then back to school on Tuesday.

Goals have been going pretty well this week, but I’ll get to that in a little bit. First, it’s Wednesday! Which means it’s WiPPet time! Sharing from Shed Some Light this week, since it’s what I’m working on(just met my weekly goal on it, so tomorrow I’ll be moving on to Closing Time – I’ve missed Gio and Cam. Maybe next week we’ll get some of them). For today, I have 7 paragraphs(8+2+4-1-6). In case you don’t remember, Tereza and Toby have just recently learned they’re half-siblings, but they’ve known each other longer than that.

He scowled for a moment then nodded. “All right, I understand. But, you really should get out of here. It’s not a safe place.”

That rankled. It was fine for him to be here, but not her. Of course. She was a woman so she couldn’t take care of herself. Like she hadn’t practically grown up on the streets. “I can-”

“Take care of yourself. Yes, I know. You told me that plenty when we were kids, too. But, this is different. Just trust me. It isn’t safe for you here right now.”

She heard something else under his words now. “What’s that supposed to mean? Was I threatened?”

“Just go, Tereza. Please. I want you to have a chance to sit down and talk to Mom.”

He may not have technically answered her question, but she had an answer anyway. “Who? Toby, who is threatening me?”

He shook his head. “Just something I heard down through the line. Please go home, Tereza. I have an appointment to keep right now, but I’ll see you later.”

Just what has Toby heard? Is Tereza in some kind of trouble? Where’s Carlos? I *might* answer some of that if I share more snippets from this. Getting close to the end, though, so we’ll see.

As for how my week’s going so far:

  • Write 5000 words on any of 4 projects – 3224 words so far this week. And only on Shed Some Light. But, I’m just about at the climax, so I should be getting to the end soon. – “Oh, right. Like I believe you actually walk the straight and narrow these days. How boring would that be?”
  • Stained by Ashes – finish beta edits – getting there. Added 2 new scenes(well, more like 1.5 since 1 was just adding to what was there). And adding 1 more to the resolution. I’ve added 2530 words to this so far. – “You called me Adam,” he finally said. He couldn’t remember that name ever crossing his uncle’s lips before.
  • Healing the Heart – Polish – nothing yet here. Will get to it when I finish these edits on SbA.
  • Guarding the Heart – layer in world building details – Nope, nope, nope
  • Defending the Heart – write Spenser’s back story, start plot summaries – Done & Done. Spenser’s story was shorter than the others. Entitled little so & so. And I started working on the Character Arc outlines. May finish plotting this week. – Years ago, Xavier broke Piers’ heart, and he swore he’d never be anyone’s secret again, but when Xavier is threatened, he realizes the one who broke it may be the only one who can put his heart back together again. *you may have seen me mention my run-on sentence summary on twitter yesterday. This is it.
  • Side projects – add 2000 words – 1262 words so far this week. Met my goal for Dance with the Devil and got about 1/3 of the way there for Snow White Twist.
    • Dance with the Devil – 934 words – How had he known I’d be out here already? Oh, right. He knew my tendency to run away.
    • Snow White Twist – 328 words – Safe. She had to think about keeping all of them safe. Even if what she wanted to do was find a spell that would rip that witch’s heart right out.
  • Submit Midas’ Daughter – not yet
  • Read: Writing Vivid Characters – 90% – I’m at 83% right now
  • Read: The Broken Hearts’ Society of Suite 17C(LeighAnn Kopans), Hope Smolders(Jaci Burton), Far Too Tempting(Lauren Blakely), Daring Miss Danvers(Vivienne Lorret), Grimm Consequences(Kate Serine), Snake Heart(Lindsay Buroker), & Radio Silence(Alyssa Cole) – I finished The Broken Hearts’ Society(LOVED), Hope Smolders(enjoyed), and Far Too Tempting(Mixed. I enjoyed the romance, but the female lead’s husband left her for another man, and it was all “oh, he’s gay now” or “he lied all this time” not one character was like “well, maybe he’s bi” and I’m shouting “bisexual isn’t a dirty word” at the book. So, yeah. That really bothered me). Will be starting Daring Miss Danvers sometime today.

Mixed bag of progress. Still, hoping to be closer to all done by Sunday’s check-in.

Teaser Tuesday: “Not a Killer”

I got the rest of the chapters of Stained by Ashes back from my second beta reader last week. I’m still working through them, but I’m almost done, then I’ll have to do a final clean-up round of editing. I’ll have it out before the official end of summer, though. Getting really close now.

And for today, here’s a little teaser(from some added material):

“Louis, no,” his father said. “You’re not a killer.”

A smirk twisted Louis’ face. “Taking care of trash like this doesn’t count as killing, Father.”

But, Lucas had distracted Louis enough for Adam to close the distance between them. By the time Louis turned back to him, Adam was close enough to bring his boot up and knock the gun from his hand with a swift kick.

“What’d you do to her?” Adam asked, grabbing onto the front of Louis’ shirt.

“The better question is what did you? Wasn’t it bad enough to ruin her reputation?”

“I love her,” Adam said between gritted teeth. “I-“

Louis jabbed at Adam’s side, connecting with the skin that had just been torn by a bullet. White hot pain stabbed through him, and his knee gave out. He felt a boot connect with his other side, then his hands smacked against the ground.

He only took time to drag in a painful breath then lunged back to his feet. Louis was already raising a fist to swing at him, but Adam went in close, so he couldn’t land the blow. Adam brought his own knee up into Louis’ stomach, then with his arms around the other man, threw them both to the ground.

The landing had bright colors flashing through his head as pain surged through him. Louis tried to scramble away from him, but Adam had spent his early years wrestling with boys who thought they were better, stronger, smarter than him. He knew how to fight like this. When he wasn’t being held at gunpoint or having his arms held behind him.

 

Sunday Summary: Pouring Down

Friday night, after my husband got home, we went to a graduation party. Pretty sure this is the last one for the year(thought that at the one we went to last month, too). But, since school starts in a little over a week, it’s likely true this time. While we were there, it started raining. No big deal, since it was just a sprinkle. And it was hot, so it felt kind of good. Then, it just started pouring. So, we all ran under the tents and huddled there while it thundered and lightning-ed and poured down. For probably about half an hour. After that, the field was pretty much a huge mud puddle. So, the kids(and the not-so-much-kids) ended up getting rather muddy. We were afraid the truck might not make it back up the hill when we left though.

Then, yesterday morning we went up to Ihop for breakfast(seriously love their strawberry & banana pancakes). This is the second time we’ve gone there since they opened at the end of May. After a couple months, you can finally get in there without the long wait times. Then, we went and looked at a new motorcycle. But, since they want twice a month what we’re paying now and we’re coming up on the time of year when husband’s unemployed, we decided to wait on that. Yesterday afternoon, we headed to my sister’s, where we were having a surprise party for my mom’s 60th birthday. Her birthday is actually next weekend, but we had it a little early. And she was surprised Especially when she saw my aunt Marcia* who she hasn’t seen in I think 9 years(at my oldest sister’s wedding). After that, we decided to head out to the local county fair, since we were close and weren’t sure if we’d be able to make it down during the week. Checked out a few of the animals, got some fair food and ice cream(the 4-H stand by the dairy barns has the best ice cream there). Then, we headed out. I used to enjoy spending days there, but anymore there’s just too many people for me to handle.

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*Technically not my aunt any more. She was my dad’s brother’s first wife, but they’ve been divorced probably close to thirty years. But, we still call her aunt.

This week has gone pretty well, goal-wise.  got all the chapters back for Stained by Ashes, and I’m fairly close to finishing up the edits on that. Then, the final run-through, and it will be ready to go. Got some words written, though not on all my projects. But, I did finish up one of them. So, that’s something at least. Progress was made on plotting as well. So, like I said a good week.

  • Write 5000 words between 5 projects – 5952 words between 2 projects
    • Protecting the Heart – 3059 words & finished 1st draft – “Then, you’re in the same position as the rest of us poor saps. Thank goodness the women we love take pity on us for falling short.”
    • Shed Some Light – 2893 words – “Give him a little time, Tereza. He’ll come around.”She just wished she could believe he was right.
  • Stained by Ashes – finish revising Chapter 19 and any more I get back this week. – yep. I’m on the next to the last chapter. Like I said, I have the rest of the notes back from my second beta reader, and I’m adding more to the final showdown per her suggestions. I’ve added 493 words to this.
  • Healing the Heart – finish rewrites – finished these between chapters of SbA. Ended up cutting 1875 words. Now, I just have to do a clean-up before it goes to beta readers. So, if anyone is interested in betaing this(might help if you’ve read Duty to Protect but not completely necessary) let me know.
  • Guarding the Heart – layer in world building details – still haven’t touched this. Not looking likely for this month.
  • Defending the Heart – finish Piers’ back story, start Spenser’s – I did finish this! Didn’t start Spenser’s though. That will be for this week. I also wrote a piece yesterday involving the two of these. Not sure if it happens before Defending the Heart starts or near the beginning.
  • Side Projects – add 2500 words – decided to dial this back to 2000 again. But, I did end up getting 2224 words between all 5 projects. Also revised and polished another short story. Going to do a final read-through of it next weekend before submitting it.
    • Dance with the Devil – 782 words – He looked over at me then, his eyes glazed over. This wasn’t the boy I’d known, or the man who’d brought me into the fold here. This was something else entirely. Almost like he’d been possessed. I took a staggering step back from him, but he blinked and that look was gone from his face. He looked at me, and I swore that was anguish that came into his eyes.
    • Snow White Twist – 982 words – No. She couldn’t do it. She’d just have to keep her distance.
    • Patrick & Sarah – 181 words –   He could not imagine how it had to be for her, raising two boys with no man in the picture. *This takes place in the mid/late 1860s, to give some context to his thinking.
    • Tavin & Haiwee – 134 words – But, the girl just smiled at him. It didn’t look particularly grateful. Brighter than that, like she knew a joke he wasn’t privy to
    • Roman – 147 words – “We’re breaking apart, and me going back home is just going to be the hammer blow that shatters everything.”
    • Midas’ Daughter – Revised & polished(no official word count, but I added over 100 while revising & cut around 50 while polishing) – Pretty to look at. Like she was some kind of golden statue. That was exactly what her father wanted to make her into. It didn’t matter at all what she wanted
  • Read: Writing Vivid Characters – 75% – I’m up to 77% on this.
  • Listen: Targeted(Kendra Elliot) & In His Shadow(Tiffany Snow) – finished both of these(shared my feelings on Wednesday) and also finished A Dark Mind(T.R. Ragan). Which was really disturbing, but I still really enjoyed it.
  • Read: Finish Virtually Yours, Try with Me(Elyssa Patrick), Changing His Game(Megan Erickson), Patterns in the Dark(Lindsay Buroker), The Walls Around Us(Nova Ren Suma), Once in a Lifetime(Jill Shalvis), & the Broken Hearts’ Society of Suite 17C(LeighAnn Kopans) I finished all of these. Loved Changing his Game and Patterns in the Dark. Enjoyed The Walls Around Us, though it was definitely a different read. Really enjoyed Once in a Lifetime. Just started The Broken Hearts’ Society of Suite 17C.

See? I said it was a pretty good week!

  • Write 5000 words on any of 4 projects
  • Stained by Ashes – finish beta edits
  • Healing the Heart – Polish
  • Guarding the Heart – layer in world building details
  • Defending the Heart – write Spenser’s back story, start plot summaries
  • Side projects – add 2000 words
  • Submit Midas’ Daughter
  • Read: Writing Vivid Characters – 90%
  • Read: The Broken Hearts’ Society of Suite 17C(LeighAnn Kopans), Hope Smolders(Jaci Burton), Far Too Tempting(Lauren Blakely), Daring Miss Danvers(Vivienne Lorret), Grimm Consequences(Kate Serine), Snake Heart(Lindsay Buroker), & Radio Silence(Alyssa Cole)

 

WeWriWa: The Smart Thing

Welcome back to another visit with the Weekend Writing Warriors, the blog hop for anyone who likes to write. I’m still sharing from Dance with the Devil, though skipping ahead a little bit. Here’s 8 sentences from chapter 3.

I probably shouldn’t have gone to town. It’s not like we’d been told to stay away. But, I was already in quite a mood. From that messed up vote, to that last altercation with Hawk, and everything else that always seemed to mess up my mind.

We were supposed to do patrols together. They hadn’t said anything about not coming to town by ourselves. Still, it probably would have been a smart thing to buddy up even for that.

No one had ever accused me of always, or ever, doing the smart thing.

What’s going to happen in town? Was he smart to come in on his own? Or maybe not so smart? Wait and you might find out.

Short post today, as we’ll be heading out for breakfast and to look at a new motorcycle then off to a surprise birthday party. So, not much time today. But, I’ve also put the second chapter of Come Back Down up on wattpad if you want to check that out.

 

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