The main idea for Feud came to me some time ago. I saw the opening scene, part of the backstory also filling my mind. I wasn’t certain where it fit in the series. Not until partway through book five. Then I knew. As always, I couldn’t wait to get started and find out what would happen to the characters and where that opening scene would take them.
Aura has led an unusual life, one she hasn’t always appreciated. Her mum has gone from one fad to another, sometimes putting both of them in danger due to her haphazard approach to life. This time it isn’t her mum that brings disaster. It is someone Aura can usually count on to be one of the few sensible people she knows. I couldn’t wait to learn how Aura handled the changes in her life and the realisation that demons actually exist and she might be in more danger than she’d ever been in before.
Demon Hunters 6: Feud is now available on Amazon.
I have a tendency to keep things. Odds and ends that appear to have no use. I have cupboards neatly stacked with broken items, material, left over pieces from projects and things I currently have no use for. I have been accused more than once of being a pack rat or a hoarder. Yet when I start a new craft project or someone is in the middle of a project and can’t find the exact piece they need, those cupboards of items become treasure troves waiting to be plundered.
Buttons for a vest, a piece of lace for a trim, bits and pieces for a decorative finish, items to personalise an otherwise bland purchase. It is amazing how many things can be reused, recycled or turned into something new. Some of my steampunk costumes have benefited from raiding my cupboards of treasures. Ribbons, lace, buttons, metal loops, fine chain, left over material, scraps of leather. You never know what you might find and what it might one day become.
I was over halfway through writing An Unexpected Betrayal when I realised some of the characters weren’t who I thought they were, some of the relationships were different and things were more complicated than I initially believed them to be. But what could I expect? I was writing about the Fae. A complex race of people who are rarely simple and have more things going on than you first expect.
So I returned to the beginning, making all the major changes that I wouldn’t normally make until the editing phase. This time they needed to be done first. A few notes here and there weren’t going to be enough for me to take the story through to the end. Not without cementing all the threads and sorting out which plot lines needed to be carried through to the final scene and which ones were no longer needed. Once that was done, the story flowed quickly. Not that it had been difficult to write before that stage.
This is one of the downsides of writing without a plan, but I wouldn’t change a thing. Discovering the characters, learning what will happen and finding out what is going on is part of what makes me write so fast. The story draws me in and keeps me going as it unfolds before me. Curiosity keeps me writing for long hours at a time so that I often forget to take breaks as I lose myself in the world of my characters.
Realms Of The Fae 4: An Unexpected Betrayal is now available on Amazon.
I can never look at a picture without seeing more than what is there. It doesn’t matter what that picture is or how tranquil and peaceful the scene appears. I’m imagining things behind the cascade of a waterfall. Hidden caves, hollows where creatures lurk, traps for the unwary. Off in the distance creatures hide in the mist, waiting for it to spread and cover more of the land. The bushes with their burst of colours are camouflage for creatures with sharp claws and long fangs. Beneath the still water are monsters that will drag in those who venture too close.
A tranquil place for a picnic? Maybe for some. But my imagination has it filled with horrors waiting to strike. Waiting for the innocent to enter the area, traps ready to be sprung. Only time will tell which will get them first.
Is it any wonder I have an endless supply of story ideas to write? Stories are everywhere I look. Waiting to be told.
When I was in primary school my nana lived in a high set house, with several rooms beneath it including one that was filled with odds and ends. Most people saw junk when they looked into the tumble of items thrown into that room over the years. Things that needed to be fixed, others that were outdated or no longer needed. I saw treasures.
One entire wall of the storage room was filled with long louvers that ran the length of the room. They could be opened slightly to let in a small amount of light or opened completely to fill the room with sunshine. Eerie lighting accompanied spooky games where hiding places were needed to avoid the bad guys or for storm swept nights filled with magic and mayhem.
The louvers often became an elaborate part of the process of making a time machine work, or a shield to be raised when the space ship was under attack. There were broken handles from gardening tools that became mighty swords, poles to vault over pools of lava or a staff to help a traveller through steep mountains.
There were other treasures. Like the birdcage we used when we rescued an injured bird. It was brought out numerous times over the years and I still own it, having been given it a few years after I left home. There were also things I had no idea what they were or had been a part of, but that didn’t stop me from making up purposes for them.
To this day I rarely see junk. I see instead what it can be turned into and I see memories of games played long ago, filled with imagination, adventure and stories.
When I was in my late teens, I bought a second hand silky oak bookcase. I’d actually gone out to buy an old timber trunk, but how could I resist the bookcase? Obviously I couldn’t and I brought it home and began to shift some of my books from their makeshift shelves and into the bookcase. I kept authors’ books together and when I was finished I stood back and admired the shelves. At that moment it struck me that the books of one of the authors had nearly completely filled the top shelf. I wanted to be able to do that. I wanted to fill the top shelf of the bookcase with my own books.
Over the years I mentioned this to a few people. Some nodded or shrugged, others laughed. Did I realise how many books it would take to fill the shelf? Well of course I did. I’m perfectly capable of counting and I could clearly see the books already in the shelf. Did I know how much work that would take? Yep. And I’ve never been afraid of hard work. Dreams are for children. Seriously? I think that person more than most needed a few dreams of their own to follow. And the winning comment- you won’t live long enough to write enough books to fill that shelf. A polite way to tell me to drop dead? Apparently not. A threat? Why would I even suggest that? Hmm, not sure… So a challenge then? Not that either. Oh well, challenge accepted anyway.
Recently I was able to achieve that dream. Filling the top shelf with my books. It has taken me a lot of years to reach that point, but I’ve finally fulfilled yet another one of my dreams. But I’m not about to stop there. The bookcase has another three shelves. It won’t be long before I start on the second shelf and who knows, maybe one day I’ll fill them all. I certainly have more than enough ideas to be able to write that many books and more.
The Brat Next Door started out as an exercise at one of the writers’ groups I regularly attend. There were a variety of images to trigger ideas. We could either use a single image or a mixture of images. It was certainly my kind of exercise since I frequently gain ideas from a single image. I glanced through the pictures, my attention caught by one of them. An old felt hat, well worn, the khaki band torn, holding on by a thread. A story filled my mind, faster than it’d be possible to type. Images, scenes and words overlayed each other like seeing a life flash before you in the split second before death, crowding my mind with the entire story. Sometimes I don’t know where a story is going or what will happen. This time I did and it was an effort to write the words as quickly as I needed, wanting to finish while the scenes were so vivid in my mind. I spent long hours frantically typing, the images remaining with me until the end, taking up part of my attention when I had to set aside the writing to attend to other things.
The Brat Next Door is now available on Amazon. A story with a mystery, a bit of romance and a character who learns more than she expected.
It’s been a whirlwind of a year with a mixture of things happening. Both good and bad. As always I’m interested to see what the following year will bring.
I had so much fun at the many events I attended this year and especially loved meeting some of my readers and catching up with ones I’ve met previous years. I’ve been working on some of the novels I plan to release next year and have discovered so many characters that are in need of having their stories told. A pity there isn’t more time to do all the things I love to do. Although the problem might be that I have an extremely long list of things I love doing. I wish everyone all the best for the coming year and hope that you find time to do some of the things you love doing too.
Forgive Me Kobe has been one of those manuscripts that I wrote during a time when I had a lot of edits come in for other manuscripts. I’d get one lot of edits done, thinking I had time to return to the story, when the next lot would come in. It became quite frustrating at times as I don’t plot so I only learn what will happen to characters when I reach each new scene. It felt like I was constantly being left hanging as to what would happen next. Approximately halfway into the story I had one day to work on it before the next lot of edits arrived. That day I wrote seven thousand words. Every time I thought of taking a break I couldn’t bring myself to have one. Otherwise it would be days before I found out what would happen to Kobe and Xavier.
By the end of that day I was far enough along I only had a couple of thousand words left to finish the story so I pretty much knew what would happen in the wrap up. I quite happily returned to editing other manuscripts, no longer feeling like I’d been left at a cliffhanger and finished the first draft off between other edits.
Hopefully you will be as interested to find out what happens in Forgive Me Kobe, as I was. It’s now available on Amazon and due to be in other online stores soon.
Once again we attended Supanova, Brisbane. It was far more crowded than previous events, but equally enjoyable. As always I felt at home, loving all the costumes and having fun figuring out who each person was portraying. It was great to see people dressed as some of my favourite characters.
Our display this year outdid the previous ones and Clint did an amazing job recreating a scene from Assassins Of The Dead 2: Dragon Touched. There was also a beautiful timber counter with a display in the front for some of my books. One of the biggest hits of our display was the 4.2 metre long articulated snake that is made mostly from PVC pipe and must have featured in hundreds of photos. I can’t wait to see what Clint will create for next year.
We took so many photos it was difficult to choose which ones to post. If you would like to see more, you can check what I put on Facebook. Or better yet, why not attend Supanova, Brisbane next year and experience everything for yourself. And if you do, come and say hello. Like previous years I loved catching up with old friends and meeting new people and I’m looking forward to doing so again next year.