I haven’t written in months, but what better time than Thanksgiving weekend to post an update. Since my last blog in July, I published a few books—Rich S.O.B. and Rusty Cage as Bijou, Black & Blue as my new Ily Jacks m/m pen name, and a dark romance under a third pen name.
I’ve enjoyed writing outside my comfort zone with the kidnapping theme and then the gay romance. I’m planning to start 2018 with my second Ily book plus I’m working on a romance series with Aimie Grey. It’s the first time I’ve ever co-written with anyone, and I’m nervous.
Next month’s release will mark my 44th since 2012, and I have a system when it comes to writing. Sometimes, that system explodes into a dumpster fire, and I have to edit like a mad woman to salvage the plot. Still I know how to fix my crap and adding a second person to the mix terrifies me.
So Aimie and I plan to write several short gay romances with a city meets country theme. I’m very curious at how things turn out creatively between us.
As for writing more dark romance, I’m not certain how soon I want to jump into that mindset again. I think I might rather dip my toe into paranormal romance. I have an alien concept for a PNR series that could be fun.
Unfortunately, I didn’t attend any signings this year. I had to cancel Arch, Glass City, and Rebels & Readers. While bummed to miss out on the signings, I did have more time to write and hit a few deadlines.
Shyla and I continue to meet monthly to talk shop. She’s also varied up her releases this year to prevent her writing from becoming stale. As many authors reach their fifth year in indie publishing, we’re looking for ways to keep our writing fresh.
A great blessing this year was how Jack and I grew much closer. In 2017, he gave Call of Duty a try. Now we play free for all every night. Whenever I’m tense, shooting bots makes my problems temporarily go away.
Jack has also been open to watching a lot of more obscure and/or classic horror movies. We binged directors like David Cronenberg (Shivers, The Brood, Rabid) and John Carpenter (Prince of Darkness, They Live, In the Mouth of Madness). He even endured a silly, childhood favorite of mine—The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension.
Luca doesn’t like horror movies and he’s more into PC games than Xbox. Though he’s fully in his sarcastic, moody teenage phase, I still manage to get him to mellow out when we have our weekly mom/son outings. At fourteen, he still has many more sullen years ahead of him.
There’s no denying Max had a tough year. All winter, he struggled to recover from his health disaster last Nov. Just as he settled down during spring, there was a major upheaval with the staff working at his house. Max didn’t handle it well but (thankfully) it didn't go as badly as we feared. Fortunately by autumn, he turned a corner and began eating three meals at day and taking walks again. This is the first Thanksgiving in four years that I haven't been stressed out about Max.
2017 sure had its ups and downs. People were stressed about politics and authors worried about a flooded market. Social media was full of drama and complaining, so I stayed off it as much as I could. Often times, I thinned my friend list on FB and followers on Twitter to avoid the festering anger common this year. As such, I kept calm and remained focused.
I hope everyone had a blessed Thanksgiving. My fingers are crossed that I remember to post before the end of the year with a few New Year’s resolutions.