#IWSG Weird, Cool #Writing Research


Happy May to all writers!


Pop over to Alex Cavanaugh’s blog to join us for the Insecure Writers Support Group.

Today’s co-hosts: Nancy Gideon, Tamara Narayan, Liesbet @ Roaming About, Michelle Wallace, and Feather Stone!

How’s your writing? I’m about 40% done with my romantic suspense WIP, Twin Sacrifice. Thank you to my awesome critique partner, Nicki Elson, for her tremendous help.

I love this month’s IWSG question:

What’s the weirdest/coolest thing you’ve researched for a story?

So many weird/cool topics to choose from! I know quite a few writers like me hope our internet search histories don’t alert the authorities to possible subversive behavior. Here are my highlights:

* Building bomb triggers

* Layout of rooms in the White House

* Effects of Rohypnol (Roofies) on the body

* How to get a gun through airport security

And my most fun research? Taking a Chicago architectural cruise.

I look forward to hearing what funky stuff you’ve researched!

Flash Drive #Giveaway and April #KU Challenge: SPIKED


Lots of giveaways and news to share from Jennifer Lane Books!

I’m pairing with USB Memory Direct to offer a giveaway of three flash drives loaded with a Jennifer Lane ebook of your choice.

Enter on the Rafflecopter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Also, SPIKED (Blocked #3) is part of the Love Kissed Books KU Challenge. We struggle to like each other in this heated political climate, and the NA Sports Romance Blocked series is about finding love despite our differences. Love across the aisle!

Have you participated in the Kindle Unlimited Challenge? You can win a Kindle and Amazon gift cards by reading awesome books.

Finally, are you a Prison Break fan? I’m a HUGE fanatic and writing fan fiction for the show is what started my crazy author adventure. I’m so psyched for the show’s return this April! If you haven’t seen it, check out season one on Netflix.

Prison Break inspired my debut novel WITH GOOD BEHAVIOR, which will be re-released soon after a fresh, new edit.

My work in progress is a romantic suspense novel: Twin Sacrifice. Stay tuned for excerpts from this psychological thriller.

#IWSG Controversial Topics and First Draft Angst


Time for the Insecure Writers Support Group, when we vent our troubles and encourage each other in this crazy thing called writing. I appreciate Alex Cavanaugh for his brainchild! Please join us if you dare.


How’s your work-in-progress coming along? I started writing the sequel to my college volleyball romance Blocked. This one’s titled Aced, and features the romance between a 24-year-old Mexican American med student and a 22-year-old African-American volleyball star.

I’m rather conflict averse, but I find myself exploring some controversial topics in these novels. Blocked battles political differences, and Aced explores racial differences. Though I feel uncomfortable with conflict, discussing opposing points of view can be an enlightening experience in real life. I hope to offer a balanced take on touchy subjects in my writing.

Does your first draft feel like utter crap sometimes? I try to trudge through but writing can feel so difficult some days!

Congrats to my pub sister Debra Anastasia for the success of her crazy-ass comedy Fire Down Below! She has the wildest, dirtiest sense of whack ball humor!

The Work In Progress #WIP Blog Tour

I’ve been tagged by the lovely Maria Savva for this blog tour. Maria is a prolific author and I loved her collection of short stories Fusion (my review is HERE.) 

The rules: Provide the link back to the post by the person who nominated you. Write a little about and give the first sentences of the first three chapters of your current WIP, then nominate four other writers to do the same.


My current WIP isn’t actually in progress anymore; it’s FINISHED. Yahoo! The release date for Blocked is 10-21-14 and the cover reveal is just around the corner: 8-25-14.

College freshman Lucia Ramirez has a secret crush on Dane Monroe. He’s a tall drink of water — blond, brash, and one hell of a volleyball player.¡Híjole! Lucia hopes her volleyball scholarship to his school will make him notice her.

Too bad what’s noticeable is Dane’s obvious hatred for Lucia. Her family’s politics contradict everything he stands for. And politics are front and center in both their families. Dane’s mother is about to face Lucia’s father in the race for US President.

When Secret Service throws them together, Dane can’t deny his frustrating attraction to Lucia’s athletic curves and sweet faith in the world. Amid the intense pressure of college athletics and presidential politics, can opposites not just attract, but overcome overwhelming odds to be together? Or do their differences block their match from the start?



Want to sign up for the cover reveal, release blitz, and/or blog review tour for Blocked? Head over to AToMR Tours.

Blocked has alternating points of view. The odd chapters are Lucia Ramirez and the even chapters are Dane Monroe.

Chapter One

As I plopped down on the bleachers and scanned my new teammates around me, one word came to mind: heaven


Chapter Two

I can’t fucking believe it…I thought for sure Brad was shitting me when he said Lucia Ramirez was coming to play volleyball here.

Chapter Three

Sweat poured off Dane in a steady stream, but he didn’t even look like he was breathing hard. 


**********

I’m nominating the following 4 talented writers to reveal their WIPs 🙂

Nicki Elson – http://nickielson.blogspot.com

Beck Anderson – http://authorbeck.com/category/blog-post/

Elisa Dane – http://www.elisadane.com

Carol Oates – http://www.caroloates.com/p/home.html

Check out their blogs and their books!!

Look! The Next Best Thing!

Author Darcia Helle sure is creating a lot of work for me on the blog. 😉 First she tagged me for The Next Best Thing Blog Challenge. Then she tagged me AGAIN for the U Got the Look Blog Challenge.

Both challenges involve my work-in-progress On Best Behavior (The Conduct Series #3).

Author Gail Baugniet started The Next Best Thing HERE. The rules are:

Answer 10 questions about my current WIP (Work-In-Progress)

What is the working title of your book?
Where did the idea come from for the book?
What genre does your book fall under?
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
Who or What inspired you to write this book?
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

I decided to follow Gail by posting my answer to one question a week, with the hope of finishing the manuscript in ten weeks.

Sadly the past two weeks have been epic FAIL for me and I’ve forgotten to post my answers among all the giveaways I’ve been hosting. (And another giveaway starts tomorrow–stay tuned).  So, I’m answering three questions today to catch up.

4) Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

Actor Wentworth Miller is my absolute celebrity crush–he’s an easy pick to play Grant Madsen. I can’t remember this actress’s name but I can totally see her as Sophie Taylor.

Thanks to Julie from A Tale of Many Reviews for framing these photos!

5) What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Planning a wedding is never easy, especially when the Russian Mafia want you dead.

6) Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

Neither–it will be published (I hope!) by Omnific Publishing, a small publisher I lurve.

And now onto U Got the Look!

The Look is a writing prompt, a game, another tagging event. This is how U Got “The Look” works: you take your current manuscript, search for the word “look”, and post the surrounding paragraphs. Lastly, you tag 5 blogging authors who you think will be a good choice for the game.

(I use the word “look” approximately 20,000 times in each manuscript so this should be no problem.)

Sophie looked into his worried blue eyes and reached for his hand. “Grant, I have absolutely no qualms about marrying you. I’d do it today if we could.”
“Then let’s just go to the courthouse right now.”
She grimaced. “You know I’d love that, but my dad would kill me. No, we’ll do it this summer, like we planned. We’ll do the big church wedding.” She turned back to the door.
He tugged at her hand, drawing her to face him again. “Sophie, talk to me.”
“It’s just…” She sighed. “It’s been a while since I’ve seen Pastor Tom, and…do you know anyone whose marriage is actually happy, Grant? We love each other, but who’s to say we won’t turn out like our parents?”
He flinched. “There’s no way we could be as bad as my parents.”
“But they were in love once too, right? Your dad even sang to your mom at their wedding.”
“I guess you could say they were in love once, before my father showed his true colors.” His eyes darkened. “But Sophie, we’re different from them. I’m not an alcoholic, for one thing.”
Her lips curled into a faint smile. Their psychologist Hunter’s insistence that Grant was not his father had finally gotten through to him. “You’re not a child abuser either.”
“Though Ben sure tempts me sometimes.”
Sophie’s grin widened. Grant joking about the trials of helping to parent his nephew, instead of freezing up at the mere mention of child abuse, definitely indicated his progress in counseling.

 
And now I tag 5 author friends to get the “look”. No worries if you’ve already participated.

And finally, please join us on the Omnific Publishing Author, Author Blog Bounce! Instructions are HERE.