New Stories and Updates

Good Morning.

I’m hopeful with Spring having arrived just the other day, we will be free from snowy and cold weather.  It hasn’t felt like Spring yet.  Since “Love Will Lead You Back” was posted, I’ve not been idle.  I’ve been working on two stories which are part of an overall series that I’ll be posting soon.  I have one story completed which is being edited now, and another about half finished.

Both of these new stories are part of a theme surrounding Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina.  There is bleed over of characters between the stories, but the stories will remain standalone. All of my personal favorite haunts are included in the stories, which I believe leads to more realistic scenes and settings.  Here’s a clue why: it certainly makes it easier to write when you’ve been there done that.  Not that I surf, break down doors, or temporarily disable surveillance cameras at resorts for nefarious purposes.

I have two other stories in my archives, that when I reread them fit nicely into the Beach theme.  The title for the new Series is “South Lumina Avenue.”  Anyone that has been to Wrightsville Beach, has more than likely been on both North and South Lumina Avenue.  They each have their own set of residents, and vibe.  I hope to try and capture the ambiance and subtle differences in each.  Let’s take a walk on the beach.  There is no telling what kinds of characters we’ll find living or renting these glorious beach homes.  We’ll surely discover secrets even they didn’t know, and they live there.

Each of the stories will be titled by a number and sub-title.  The number corresponds to the address of the house where the people in the story live.  The sub-title is one or two words that identify the topic, action or outcome of the story.  It’s similar to Debbie Macomber’s naming convention for her Cedar Cove Series.  The difference is that all my stories take place on the same street, whereas Debbie’s name different streets within her Cedar Cove community.  If it’s good enough for Debbie Macomber and her Cedar Cove series, it’s good enough for me.

The web-site is functional, but not very zippy or flashy.  I think it needs more zip and flash, but since I’m not a particularly zippy or flashy person, I may need to wait until Simon and Schuster picks up my contract.

I want to wish everyone a Happy Spring!  Get out there and start planting and mowing.

Cheers! Thanks for reading


Finally a new Post

OK.  I admit, I’ve been remiss in updating the blog.  And since I’m retired, I won’t fall back on the old excuse of, “life gets in the way.”

I suppose, I haven’t felt like I had anything to add to the blog lately, but that’s simply not true.  I’ve written almost daily.  I stress almost, since there have been days when I have not.  Shame on me.

I have taken a few turns (at high speed) since I last updated the blog.  As a consequence, I’ve got a few things in the hopper that are not pure romance or even romance with a twist.  In fact, they are further from romance than I had originally intended.  But maybe that’s the point of exploring different topics and writing.

I am trying to find my voice, and test the boundaries of what I can write.  I’ve crafted a few characters, that I like, and hopefully you will too.  I’ve taken the best of what I think to be the best and thrown an amalgam together of all the traits of my lead character in Mitchell Donovan.

Mitchell is a spy at his core.  He’s dishonest to most, but loyal to a few.  Yet he is so much more.  He lives dangerously in his work life.  Plays hard and dangerous in his free time, and he feels like he’s missing out on the white picket fence, wife and kids.  Think of a James Bond with a conscious that really does someday want to settle down with Moneypenny.  He may someday settle down with Moneypenny, but not anytime soon.  And she’s willing to wait and work side by side.  What a refreshing trait.  One that I have so much experience with in my own personal life.

He’s unflappable as I write him.  He’s bold, makes his own opportunities, but prefers the less ostentatious lifestyle outside of assignments.  She is tough, strong, athletic, and just plain gorgeous (his Moneypenny that is).  He’s getting there, slowly, understanding what life is all about.  Certainly not disarming nuclear bombs in Russia, but doing good deeds with good old fashioned hard work, and chutzpah, plus a few martial arts moves if required–but only if necessary.

I’m going to introduce Mitchell to you in the Sneak Peaks section to the right.  Feel free to comment, and share your thoughts.

Oh, yes, I almost forgot.  I did get an editor.  She is tough but fair.  She edited a story for me about a six weeks ago.  I’m still trying to get the red out.  So just when I thought I was improving, the professional editor helped me understand, I needed to step up my game.  Thanks Alice.

As always, be happy in whatever you pursue.

Back to roots


Weekly Updates

Good Day!  The site is getting a little more traction which gladdens my heart.  I promised an update at least weekly.  I want to stay true to that promise.  There have been no comments regarding the previews for “Silk Stocking Diaries”, or “Southern City Customs”, so I’ve decided to pursue another avenue in the interim.

As a note, “Southern City Customs”, is completely outlined in detail.  Characters have been written, plot lines mapped, and conclusions drawn.  It could be a very long story — certainly capable of novel length — and not one I think I want to embark upon without an editor.  At a minimum, I could use some guidance to get the plot solidified.

For those of you that have screamed for an editor, I may have found one that is willing to take on the job.  The editor is busy until after St. Patrick’s Day, so I’ll muddle through until then.  And that means, everyone reading has to muddle through as well, without the editor’s ruthless scythe at my bulging prose.

I started an exercise the other night, that is very narrowly focused.  It’s an attempt to “Do more with less.”   My goal is to write more powerfully, with fewer words.

I set myself a goal to write a brief (for me anyway) romance in less than ten pages.  I am about half way through the exercise.  At the five page mark, I have two characters, that share a common bond, although they don’t know it yet.  I’ve just introduced conflict into the story.  It’s time to play out the tragedy towards resolution and conclusion.

After reading it, I realized many readers would think this is very depressing story.  And for the first part, I’ll admit it is.  But if you stick with it, I’d like to think there is redemption as the story concludes.

If I look at love and romance without tragedy or even minor conflict, it seems flat, almost lifeless.  But through conflict resolution, redemption, and renewal, love becomes powerful.

Along with my self-imposed limit of ten Microsoft Word pages (so let’s call it 5K Words), I’ve also focused on meaningful dialog.  I find dialog, as I’ve previously mentioned in other posts, one of the most challenging aspects of writing.

If I’ve created a character that is two dimensional, dialog adds the third dimension.  It makes characters real.  Admittedly it adds the spice, the true inner workings of the character based on what they are saying and feeling.  If I have paper and clay to mold the outline of the character, the dialog adds the life.

Stay tuned for more blog posts as I close on this week’s writing assignment.

Thanks for reading.

I’ll keep writing until someone tells me to stop.  And even then, I’ll likely debate.