Looking Back, Looking Ahead

Looking Back, Looking Ahead

happy new year

I usually do this post on New Year’s Eve, but life sort of got away from me, as it does now and then. However, here’s a look back at 2014.

Um.

Well, I did finish the Guitar Book, and came up with a series idea based on the talent agency…had a great time pitching that at Desert Dreams, finaled in their contest with that book, and…let’s see…oh YEAH. Boroughs Publishing Group wanted the series, and I signed a contract with them in August for a short story and the three novels. Woo! (StarTide series!) Isn’t the StarTide logo cool???

StarTide card

I pitched the Ballet Book, finally finished it, and sent it off to Lovely Agent who wants to see it after I make some revisions because she really liked it but it didn’t quite have enough oomph in the non-ballet sections. So there’s that.

Went to San Antonio for RWA’s National Conference, where I was a lucky girl and got to spend time with the Boroughs peeps. Went to their open house, and was invited to their author dinner even though I wasn’t technically one of theirs yet. Spent some lovely time talking to Chris Keeslar, which is where I got the idea for the Christmas short story.  I also drunk-pitched said Ballet Book to a Lovely Editor at St. Martin’s, who said she loved the idea and (being friends with Lovely Agent), when the book is complete she’d like to see it.

TheChristmasStar_tempOnce home, I commenced writing like a fiend. Wrote, finished, and turned in the short story.  Christmas Star (only .99!) published in October, 2014! Yay…after almost two years of not publishing, it was nice getting back into the water. In December, I finished book 2 of the StarTide series, and turned that one in. Began Book 3.

Also in December, rewrote another short story I had, after being asked to submit one for a paranormal/sci fi box set for Irksome Rebel Press. As soon as my readers get that back to me, I’ll be turning it in.

So the count for 2014: finished 3 novels; wrote 2 short stories; had one short story published, went to two conferences. Oh, and I wrapped up my second year as President of Los Angeles Romance Authors, chapter of RWA. Whew!

2015 is my year

(2015 can be your year, too! There’s room for everyone!)

Here’s what my 2015 is going to look like, that I am aware of currently:

Writing wise: Finish Book 3, Rising Star. Write Caine Brothers Book 3, Demon’s Rage (Justin and Maggie). Rewrite the Ballet Book; send to Lovely Agent (and hopefully Lovely Editor). Brainstorm 2 – 3 novels/novellas for the StarTide series; discuss with Boroughs and write at least the first one.

Guarded Star, to publish in February.  Star-Crossed, to publish in April. And Rising Star, publishing in June.

Hopefully my short story will be accepted, and in the Lucky Stars Box Set that will come out on March 17th.

End of March, I will be speaking at the California Dreamin’ Writer’s Conference, where I’ll get to see lots of old friends and make new ones.

End of May, I’ll be at the Pay It Forward Writer’s Retreat, put on by the incomparable duo of Kendall Grey and Danielle Allen.

End of July, I’ll be in New York City for the RWA National Conference!!!

Demon Soul, Demon Hunt and Demon’s Rage will hopefully all be out in August or maybe September, with nifty new covers and finally an end to the story!

A StarTide holiday novella out in October/November, hopefully.

So, that’s my year.  Of course, life happens and things change. My fondest hope is that whatever changes happen are for the better, and that more gets out than less…

Whatever your dreams are, go for them. Be bold, in whatever manner fits you. And don’t let anyone tell you your dreams are too big. They are YOUR dreams, and so they are the perfect size.

Sending love and hugs out to you, and may 2015 be the continuation of All the Good Things!

All pictures (except Christmas Star) borrowed from Leonie Dawson)

All pictures (except Christmas Star and the StarTide logo) borrowed from Leonie Dawson.

 )O(

Cover Reveal, Christmas Star

Cover Reveal, Christmas Star

bpg-badge

Here it is! My first story with Boroughs Publishing Group. Yes, I’m excited, can’t you tell? *bouncety bounce*

CHRISTMAS STAR comes out on October 17, 2014. Chris Keeslar and I have been working to make it perfect for you.  This one is a Lunchbox Romance, which means you’ll be able to read it over lunch (think short story). It’s also the first in the StarTide series! Plus – 99 cents. Such a deal!

Here’s the logo for StarTide…

StarTide card

Isn’t this the niftiest thing, ever? And here’s the quick blurb, and the cover!

Christmas Star

After a whirlwind courtship, makeup artist Elle finds herself engaged to one of the brightest, busiest movie stars in the Hollywood firmament. So why does Chef Luc have her dreaming about white picket fences, and having his babies?

TheChristmasStar_temp

Isn’t it pretty?!!

Sorry I’ve been missing here this past month. Lots has happened, a lot I’m not ready to discuss and a lot that I really CAN’T discuss, and a lot of writing has been going on, too. So there’s that. Oh, and fitness. #healthywriter is my new thing. Not getting any younger, you know? Gotta stay healthy.

Anywho…Book 1 in the StarTide series, GUARDED STAR, will be out February 5th. In April, SHINING STAR will come out, and in June, RISING STAR will make its debut.  There are more novels planned in this contemporary romance series, set around Hollywood and the StarTide Talent Agency. Shenanigans abound, so stay tuned for more information!

)O(

Writing to Contract

Writing to Contract

bpg-badge

Why has the blog been quiet? Sorry! So you see, it’s like this.

If we’re Facebook friends, you already know this, but a week or so ago I finally inked the deal with Boroughs Publishing Group for the first three books in the loosely-connected StarTide Agency contemporary romance series (the guitar book, for those of you following along). (Can I get a huzzah? lol.) I also signed a separate contract for a 12k short story called a Lunchbox Romance (something you can read during lunch).

Why sign a contract when the world is the author’s oyster right now with self publishing? Because I can’t do it all, and more importantly, I don’t want to do it all. I’m still learning. I have a long way to go before I send my work out into the world all by myself.

That said, I did not make this decision lightly. It was made after a month of discussion with Jill Limber, the editor who made the offer; contract dissection; soul searching; and then going to RWA’s national conference, and having a great time there with Michelle Klayman, Jill, and Chris Keeslar (the Boroughs honchos). I like them, I have faith in them, and the fact that Chris Keeslar had worked on contracts for my Dad back in the day (when Chris was fresh out of college and at Dorchester) gave the whole thing a symmetry that just felt right. Plus the quality of the stories I’ve read from Boroughs has been extremely high.  (Which reminds me – In The Place Where She Fell is an AMAZING short story by Mary Beth Bass. Go read it!)

I am still a bit happily dazed, and am now facing the fact that I’m writing to contract deadlines. So far, it’s not as scary as I thought, and the deadlines are generous (though I plan to beat them by a mile). It’s nice, knowing that someone has the confidence in me to bring a three paragraph description of a novel into fruition.

There’s also this other book that’s waiting not-so-patiently to get edited. It’s done, but it needs to shine before I send it to an agent. So I think I’ll be doing that on my Sundays. Some writers take Sundays for their books not contracted; working on something different from their usual. (For me, that’s the ballet book.)

So, that in a nutshell, is why the blog has been silent. Things have been happening, writing has been getting done, and life has been being lived.

What’s been up with you, buttercup?