I started to blog this morning, and stalled out, the events of Paris heavy on my mind. How can I talk about something as trivial as a fictional biker book, I wondered, when there are people waking up in France this morning with that swift gut-punch of loss rendering them immobile? I felt silly and foolish, worrying about my books and my job when there are families so recently touched by evil.
I elected to write, instead, and in doing so, I reflected. There is nothing I can say to ease the terrible hurt of the weekend's events. There are not words to express sympathy and solidarity. I pray for those who were touched; I pray that they can find grace in their grief, and solace in their sorrow. I know that loss isn't something that can be prayed away, so I will pray for them. I know they are angry, because I'm angry. It's a gruesome world we live in, and the innocent are the ones who bear the brunt of the violence.
And I started to think that maybe it's not so silly what I do for a living. Because through fiction we right wrongs, we express human emotion and hurt eloquently, and we find a way to address all the issues we can not face as ourselves. Fiction has always been a beautiful escape for me, when life has thrown punches, and as an entertainer - yes, that's what I am now, I realize - I feel it's important to provide an escape for my readers. Escapism isn't a blotting out of real life and its tragedies - it's a coping mechanism. That's the beauty of humanity - we cope. So I hope that today you'll let me share some of my work with you, and I hope it will help with the coping.
There comes a point, midway through each of my novels, in which I absolutely hate what I'm working on. It's inevitable. A little chocolate and some patience usually sees me through the mini-crisis. And today, I sat down at the computer and I was able to look at the book as something aside from the responsibility that's been plaguing me. I saw it, really saw it. And you guys...Secondhand Smoke is the best in the series yet. I don't think critics will think that, thanks to certain action-movie elements of the book, but in my opinion, it's a heck of a ride. So I hope that you, as my readers, will really enjoy it. Aidan, baby, it's been a long, rough trip, but it's been worth every halting step. Today's writing has been a lot of fun, and it makes me so excited to get the book to you all as soon as possible. I can't wait for you to see Aidan, and Sam, and Tango, and Ian ( I do love Ian, even if he's hated).
If you haven't seen it yet, I'm hosting a Dartmoor location "tour" via Facebook, going through the locations of the novel. And be on the lookout for new giveaways and teasers coming soon.
It's my belief that fiction can be a light in dark times, for those of us needing a little something to grab onto. Thank you, readers, for making this journey such a light.
The jet trails out here in the fall are always so pretty at sunrise and sunset/
Day 13 of NaNoWriMo and I'm sitting on just over 20k words of writing progress - which I feel pretty good about considering I've had the stomach flu this week and haven't been able to work as much as I would have liked. This is my first year "participating," if you can go so far as to call it that. I'm generally more of a Lone Ranger than a participator, when it comes to...most things. Enforced word counts don't jive with my writing style. I'm a perfectionist and the "get it done" method doesn't track with my artistic side. Stall mucking, yes; creating, no.
Anyway, I'm knuckling down. Even if Aidan doesn't make it easy on a nerdy girl who doesn't like to speak "ladykiller." He is who he is...but let's just he and I wouldn't have any common ground in real life. One of the beauties of fiction.
Anyway again, I still don't have a firm release date. And that's okay. Why? Because Secondhand Smoke isn't going to be a formulaic romance novel, so I've decided I'm not going to worry about all those formulaic romance novel release expectations. It's going to be different, and it's going to be fun, and I'm not feeling so apologetic about being atypical anymore. I'm writing about outlaws, after all; time to embrace that outlaw spirit. These characters have lots of surprises in store for you guys with this book, and I want to echo that in the weeks to come with my own release countdown efforts. Let's be rebels, shall we?