Reinventing myself…maybe

So I’m thinking that, after this last Brethren book, and with the exception of my upcoming Netherworlde trilogy, I might transition to writing YA. Yeah, I know everyone and their grandmother writes YA anymore, but to be honest, the genre has appealed to me for a long time. 

I’m also tired of writing what feel, to me, like explicit sex scenes. I’m not a prude or anything and I definitely like heat in my romances, but to be honest, it’s hard to come up with new ways to describe sexually explicit actions. And body parts. And, frankly, new ways to introduce these parts to each other. In the past, I toyed with the idea of writing erotica because I have friends who write it — and write it really well, but ultimately, I decided I’m just not very gifted in that area.  Hell, it cracks me up to read reviews of my books where the reviewer says my love scenes are tame, because I feel like I did my best to write the damn things hot!

And while I know there’s sex in some YA books, it’s more along the heat level I’m comfortable writing.  I also feel like it progresses at a more natural pace than in adult-centered romance, where I admit, I sometimes feel the need to add in another love scene, just to keep the heat up.
Plus as my kids get older, approaching their teen years, I find myself wanting to feel prepared to handle it. I need to remember what it feels like; I need to immerse myself in this strange world they’re about to enter so I can better help them navigate through it.  I can’t physically become a teen again but I can write from the viewpoint of teen characters. Hopefully that will help a little. Or at least grant me the insight so I don’t kill them in the midst of some angst-ridden, hormone-fueled tantrum, LOL.

Nothing’s decided for sure, and I’m sure whatever I write will keep a paranormal edge — even if that genre is supposedly saturated, market wise, too. Almost everything I’ve ever written has had a dark side to it. But I’ve been writing paranormal romance for grown ups for almost 10 years now. As a once-habitual genre-hopper, that’s a hell of a long time.

Advertisements

I never used to sing before I had kids. Oh, sure, I was in the chorus for our high school production of “Bye-Bye Birdie” and I belted out a horrendous rendition of Tiffany’s “Could’ve Been” on an audition for the “Rocky Horror Show” once (I didn’t get the part). But otherwise, with the exceptions of my shower and my car — and only then with the radio blasting and my tape of Stevie Nicks wailing “Edge of Seventeen” on full volume — I did not sing.

But once my son was born, and then a few years later, my daughter, I became a singing fool. You see, you give up a lot by way of personal dignity when you have kids. But when you have kids, it doesn’t matter, because for awhile at least, in their impressionable, adulating eyes, you can do no wrong. You are perfect to them. And their smiles, their laughter, are golden to you. You’ll do anything to earn them. I know I sure will. And so I started singing.

And while I started off with the usual nursery rhyme fare, in the last decade or do since my son’s birth, I’ve also become quite the impromptu songwriter, making up lyrics and accompanying tunes about just about everything from tickling armpits to picking noses; from the mundane, like bath time or supper time, to the more odd, like songs about farting. Today I made up a sort of Gregorian-sequence chant about how my son could roll down his car window, hang his wiener out and pee. (Not really of course – it was a song. Creative licensure and all.)

My kids laugh at my goofy little songs. Sometimes, like today with the wiener-out-the-window song, they’ll sing along. Other times they’ll ask for repeat performances of specific tunes, such as my daughter’s favorite, “Anytime’s A Good Time for Girl Time.” Sometimes they roll their eyes when I sing, but those occasions are still pretty few and far between, at least for now. And I still get their laughter and smiles for my rewards.

I owe more to my kids than I ever would’ve imagined possible before having them. The gift of song is just one of many.

Shout out to the Voice behind my audiobook

DarkPassagesaudio_500One of the coolest things I’ve done in my writing career is have one of my books made into an audio version. I paid for the production of “Dark Passages: Tristan and Karen” myself and I’m not going to lie, folks — it wasn’t cheap. Part of the cost covered the narrator talent — in this case, actor Christopher Patton. I wasn’t familiar with Chris or his body of work until I began listening to sample audio files for prospective narrators. I found myself really taken with his voice. Even in a brief clip, I could tell he had a fantastic range in terms of emotion; in other words, he was an actor, not just a narrator. And I have to admit, I thought he sounded sexy as hell, the way my hero, Tristan, might if he was a real person. To this day, I consider myself very lucky in that Chris was available to work on my project.

Since the completion of the audio version of “Dark Passages: Tristan and Karen,” I’ve kept in touch with Chris through Facebook and Twitter. It’s always exciting to learn about new projects he’s working on. My kids had a squeeeeeeing fan-kids fit when I explained to them that one of the characters on the episode of “Pokemon” they were watching one Saturday morning was voiced by someone I knew. And as for me, not only do I have a squeeeeeing fan-girl moment any time I listen to the audio version of “Tristan and Karen,” but I had another recently when he announced he would be narrating the audio version of Disney’s novelization of “Guardians of the Galaxy.” 

Chris actually has a pretty impressive resume when it comes to work as a voice actor, having appeared in more than 200 anime titles. He also performs as a stage actor as well — most recently in a production of “Bat Boy: The Musical” in Annapolis, MD. The local paper there also covered him in a recent feature. He shared the link on Facebook, and like a proud fan-girl, I’m sharing it with you here.

You can hear a sample of Chris Patton’s amazing vocal talents on “Dark Passages: Tristan and Karen,” buy the audiobook, or update your Kindle version with the audio performance by clicking here

New Release: DARK VENGEANCE PART 2

DV2Readers have been waiting patiently for it, and now it’s here: DARK VENGEANCE PART 2, Book 8 in The Brethren Series.

From the beginning, it’s been the two of them: Brandon Noble and Lina Jones, against the world…against all odds. But in the end, Brandon couldn’t resist his true vampire nature, and the relentless pull of the blood lust drove them apart. Now he’s disappeared without a trace and his life may very well be in danger. Can Lina put aside her broken heart to help find the man she loves? Or does Brandon’s salvation lie in the hands of the most unlikely hero of all?

Available for $6.99 in ebook formats from:

Smashwords
Amazon
BN.com for Nook

New trailer for DARK VENGEANCE PART 2 revealed

It’s almost here! DARK VENGEANCE PART 2 will be hitting ebookstores on June 23, 2014. Want a sneak peek at this highly anticipated eighth installment of The Brethren Series? Click here to read an excerpt and check out the official trailer below.