Phew! This has been a crazy couple of months. Between releasing Hidden by Lies in May, big changes at my day job, and a terrifying bout with writer’s block, I have been a little MIA.
I struggled and struggled to put Hidden by Secrets on paper. I became depressed and frustrated. All of my friends were kicking ass and taking names when it came to books. Their lives were filled with words and accolades. Do not misunderstand – I am ALWAYS happy for my friends. I support them and cheer them on and love every second of their achievements. What kind of friend would I be if I was on the sidelines grumbling in jealousy? A shitty one.
I kept plugging along. I read a lot of books, but nothing resonated with me. While I enjoyed what I read, no one story reached out and smacked me in the face screaming “YOU WILL LOVE ME DAMN IT!” I thought I was broken. I couldn’t write, I couldn’t read, I wanted to stare at the wall and just … quit.
You know, after years of reading ah-mazing stories that grip your heart and squeeze out every tear possible, it can be difficult to find the book you want to read at that moment. A number of books I tried to read at one point but couldn’t, later became personal favorites. I was at a point in my life where nothing resonated. I was terrified.
Reading is a mood thing, it is for me, at least. And, though many authors disagree, through not connecting to stories, I found that writing is also a mood thing for me.
I was tired. So fucking tired. I work a full time, stressful job. I am raising two young children. I have a self-employed husband (who rocks, btw). I write. I read. I’m learning to speak Polish and Spanish. I am trying to learn guitar. I am going and going and going and going and holy-shit-someone-stop-me. I don’t know about you, but I tend to expect too much from myself. I read a great article about control and issues with forgiving yourself while in my downward spiral and it shined a whole new light on my issue.
I am not God, and by thinking I should be able to achieve literally everything and never fail, I am trying to *be* God. :O WHAT?! I know I don’t have or want that job. Or, I thought I knew that. But when I admitted it was okay to mess up, okay not to be perfect, okay not to be the fastest writer with the high quality, the best mom, the best cook, the smartest employee, the best seller, I realized, maybe I’m knocking on the wrong door.
A while back, I saw a contest for writers. You had to submit something like 1000 words and you got to go to some awesome event for free. It was a pretty sweet deal. So I wrote my scene. Then I double checked the rules and low and behold, I wasn’t eligible. That’s life. But that scene stayed in the back of my mind, simmering, cooking, waiting for it’s moment.
I tried so hard to write Hidden by Secrets. People (not a ton, but I do have a few followers) were asking for it – excited for Claire to get her story out there. I can’t deliver this story. Not right now. And you know what? I’m okay with that. I hope you can be too. Writing is my love, but not my job. I have learned to accept that I will always work full time (unless that Powerball thing comes through). Claire’s story will come eventually, and it will be moving and sweet and a little crazy. But y’all… Alessandra.
Alessandra Santiago. This chick is phenomenal. She is the character (unbeknownst to me at the time) from that 1000 word scene I wrote. I always wanted to know what happened after the scene ended and now I do! And BONUS I know what happened before! The story has no title. I’m not giving much away with the exception of one thing. This is not my typical style. This is not my normal subject matter. And this character is one of the most important characters I have ever created. I adore her. I am intimidated by her. But above all, I am determined to create the absolute best book I can for her. And for you.
It won’t be out this weekend. Or this year. But when Alessandra is introduced to t he world, I will be on cloud nine. I hope you understand. I mean, nothing is going to change if you don’t, but it would be pretty freaking cool if you did.
Now, while you wait for Alessandra I have a list of books you need to read. Must. Got it?
Born, Darkly by Trisha Wolfe – This is the best book of 2017. Trisha’s writing … holy fuck, where do I start? This woman’s talent is what writers dream of. Intelligent, thought provoking, a teeny bit on the gruesome side (read: a bit more than teeny), sexy, and shocking. That is Born, Darkly.
Into the Light by LB Simmons – This book is my favorite book. Ever. Of all time. It is moving, powerful, emotional, and just plain fucking good. I will never not have this book on a list of must reads. Expect to always see this book. Read it. Love it. Make sure you have whiskey and tissues. Lots of them.
Thin Love by Eden Butler – Last I looked, this is free. FREE PEOPLE. I fell in love with Eden when I read this book. I bought everything available and constantly look for new releases.
King Hall by Scarlett Dawn – Okay, let’s be real, the whole damn series is a must read. If Scarlett publishes it, I’m gonna read it. I do not read the blurbs. I do not give two flying fucks what the story is about. It will be good. The Forever Evermore series is my favorite fantasy series out there. It’s crazy complicated. The characters have more layers than ogres. Or onions. Or whatever. Be warned, Scarlett is the QUEEN of the cliffhanger.
Okay, so that’s it. My life update. Books to read. Books to look forward to. Books, books, and more books.