The End.

I actually typed those words yesterday.

I finished Star of Time.


Set it aside. Finally.


The weight has been lifted and I can move on to Star of Fire. Already jotted some plot notes. Very exciting stuff!

​Just wanted to let you know.

Beta Edits

I got some feedback from Beta. It was mixed and when I thought about it, spot-on.

Also, [deep sigh] it created a lot of work.

Basically, there was some bloat and some unnecessary drama. The theme was a little on the weak side.

It’s hard to hear criticism about your creative work, even if you asked for it. I had to sit with it for a little while. But the more I thought about it, the more it became apparent that I had a good story, it just needed to lose some weight.

I re-evaluated. I took all the pieces apart and examined which of them were absolutely, positively doing their jobs in the book. Those got put back. The rest got put in a file that I can open and visit sometime.

I ended up writing a new intro (first few chapters), rethreading the first half and rewriting the second half. I cut an entire group of characters because their involvement was fuzzy. I changed the primary setting for the bulk of the book. I answered questions that I had been uncertain how I would answer. There are still some questions at the end of the book (the good kind!) but I know the answers now and how Phoebe will find them. That’s a much better place than I was in before. When I’m writing the story and I don’t even know how to answer the questions, that’s not a good thing. [insert embarrassed face here]

I think the book is more exciting, more clear, and has a NEW and IMPROVED twist at the end! It also sets up book 2 EVEN BETTER.

Made it a goal to write here more often, so look for more angst-filled ramblings as publishing draws near, ‘kay?

Beta Readers Wanted

It took all of November and December (with a holiday break) and some of January, but I finished my passthrough of Star of Time!


Now for the hard part – releasing the baby into the world.

So, I am putting this out there – if you like historical and/or historical fantasy, would you be interested in beta reading my book?


Approximately 73,000 words
Genre: Historical Fantasy (historical fiction with a dash of magical realism)
What I need: I’d like story feedback, character feedback, overall impressions, and notes of anything historically inaccurate or that throws you out of the story. Anything grammatical, spelling, etc is a bonus!


When seventeen-year-old Phoebe Harris wakes up in a dark alley she thinks she’s been kidnapped and immediately starts trying to figure out how to get home. It’s only after she’s helped by a mysterious man in a tricorne hat that she realizes home may be farther away than she thought.

Trapped in the past, Phoebe learns that the necklace she found hidden in her mother’s closet contains a stone known as the Star of Time. It’s one of seven stones that can control the major elements created by the Greek gods. The Star of Time will allow Phoebe to travel home through time if she unites the other seven Star stones, but she’s not the only one who wants them.

Mistaken for a spy, hunted by a killer who wants the stones for his own gain, and battling her own emotions, can Phoebe survive the 18th century long enough to go home?

Camp NaNoWriMo Winner’s Circle

Back in February I took the plunge and signed up for Camp NaNoWriMo. I packed my bags, grabbed some extra bug spray, washed the sleeping bag and waited anxiously for April 1. And who waits for April Fools Day? I mean, once you’re past 4th or 5th grade.

Turns out I should have packed an umbrella and a poncho. It rained almost the entire month of April, which made writing easier (less work outside) but killed my plans for writing on the porch enjoying the milder weather.

I set my goal at 30,000 words. I chose that number because it’s what I lacked in the novel I was working on in February and March. But after I picked that goal I was working on the novel and I realized that I had a serious problem. I had a batch of characters that I loved, but they were functioning more like paper dolls that I was moving around in painted scenes. Translation: I had no real plot. Just a few scenes and an angsty main character and 47,000 words of pretty prose.

Okay, crappy prose. Full of angst.

But, I digress.

Three days before Camp NaNo started I got an idea that would allow my characters to have new life! A real problem! A plot!

I thought I could salvage the original story, but the problem was that you can’t backfill a plot. I know, because I tried.

I stepped back. I wrote some character descriptions using the Chuck Wendig method (far, far more helpful than the 30-page character questionnaires I’ve used previously.

I bought and devoured Alexandra Sokoloff’s e-book Screenwriting Tricks for Authors (and Screenwriters!) – I took the advice and bought some index cards and jotted down the scenes that I had and little bits of information. I laid it out. And I had almost a fully formed plot for the book.

Also, it was day 6 of April and my word count was at 0.

I transferred my index cards notes into a new (yes, another one) file and started filling in gaps, and then, the writing. And I cranked out a total of 34,000+ words between my novel (now with PLOT!) and other writing (because I count all writing in NaNo months, which may not exactly adhere to the rules, but I’m a rebel, yo).

Moving on, the plan is to knock out the first draft of this novel, working title The Heart Stone, and have it done by June 1. If that date seems familiar, it was the original deadline for the novel I started in January. Which was novel number 2 and which will now never see the light of day.

After June 1, I’ll table Heart Stone and start work on novel #2 in the series. Once I have that one plotted and started I’ll most likely begin to edit and Heart Stone while working on book 2.

Ultimate goal: Heart Stone will be ready to query in the fall.

Finish That First Draft

I passed 30,000 words in my WIP novel this week. I am both proud and mystified.

Y’all. I’ve hit the muddy middle. Anyone that’s written anything knows that there comes a point when you start to question everything. Here’s what I’ve been thinking this week:

* Why did I even think I could do this?

* God, this story sucks.

* This is going straight to the file cabinet of broken dreams.

* Any agent I query this to is going to laugh and tell me I never should have even tried.

* I should quit this one and start that new project I thought of in the shower.


* I’m the worst writer to ever write. Ever.

* I can always quit.

It’s so tempting. It’s so tempting to shelve this project and start something new. That new shiny idea full of life-like, obedient characters, fully rounded and waiting for me.

But I’m committed this time. I will write something in this book every day, with a goal to meet or exceed my word count target every day. Right now, that means just over 900 words every weekday to meet a total word count of 100,000 by June 1.

I will not lose myself in the muddy middle. I won’t do it. Even if this book winds up the file cabinet of despair, I will finish it. I will finish this first draft.