The Joy of Novellas

What I’m writing…

For the past two months, I’ve been working on writing more short romances. The first one is a modern romance with magical elements. It quickly grew beyond my early estimate of about 20,000 words which would have been twice as long as Better Latte Than Never. Now it’s hanging somewhere above 30k, and I have a second piece around the same length that will pair up with the first for a novella length series. I’m so excited about this series and I can’t wait to share it!

I’m really growing to love the shorter formats. This includes books in novella and novelette lengths. It is easier to plot and write, and it happens fast enough that I don’t get bogged down by too many plot bunnies. It allows me to get through more books both with writing and reading. And that means more happily-ever-afters for everyone!

What I’m reading…

Right now, I’m reading the ARC of One Week in Hawaii, by these lovely ladies and really enjoying myself. That comes out May 19, but you can get One Week in Wyoming in the meantime if you don’t want to wait.

Roane Publishing also has more anthologies like Accidental Valentine. Check them out if you are looking for more to read in shorter sittings.

Blog Tour

We’re taking a tour around the internets with Accidental Valentine.

  • Read about what inspired our story ideas here.
  • Find out about our favorite Valentine’s candy here.
  • Read a review of Accidental Valentine here.

The next stop on the Accidental Valentine blog tour is at Romancing the Book later today! Check it out!

AV Blog Tour Button

 

Have you read Accidental Valentine? Post your review on Goodreads or Amazon! What did you do for Valentine’s Day?

Release Day News

Better Latte Than Never is out and I have an official Amazon author page. Funny how Amazon gives me the stronger this-is-real feeling than holding the physical book in my hand. But having the actual book is awesome too!

My copies of Accidental Valentine arrived.

My copies of Accidental Valentine arrived.

Buy links for the paperback and e-book are live on Amazon and elsewhere. (So exciting!)

And–even more exciting!–Ingrid Hahn hosted me over on her blog with an interview about Better Latte Than Never and other writerly things. Check it out here.

Up Next

What’s next–or rather, what I’ve been working on since November–is a new paranormal romance series with four books. The series will follow the Thorne family that owns and operates a large art museum in Baltimore, MD. Each descendant of the museum’s founder, Benedict Thorne, is cursed. If they don’t find true love by their thirtieth birthday, they are doomed to die a horrible, lonely death.

I wrote a NaNoWriMo draft of Book 1 in November 2014, but have been trying to tighten up and increase the stakes of the plot. I started rewriting the draft again in Late January.

I’m particularly excited today because I’ve finally lit on what I think is the perfect opening scene for the first book and the scene’s starting to come together (ie. the hero and heroine are actually cooperating now). I’m hoping to wrap up and edit Book 1 by the end of the year so I can query some editors about it.

One More Week! and an excerpt

Accidental Valentine will be released by this time next week! Have you preordered a copy?

Here’s an excerpt from Better Latte Than Never to hold you over until Release Day!

“Sorry you’re stuck with me today,” he said.

Hailey dashed inside.

The warmth of the shop and his voice enveloped her. It already smelled beautiful in there. The usual coffee smells, but also something spicy. Something extra.

“It’s okay…” She took a deep fortifying breath, appreciating more of the new scent and adjusted her purse strap on her shoulder.

The bolt thudded into place and he stepped back into her view.

Since when had Andrew become so hot, and what was wrong with her? He had been her best bud since at least freshman year.

She swept her gaze over him again, tallying the changes she could see. Besides the sexy stubble and the muscle that twitched in his temple as he observed her inspection, he was the same old Drew. Button up flannel shirt, sleeves rolled up, khakis that hung on his frame as if they had been tailored. But instead of the supportive old friend that he was, he appeared scrumptious and totally kissable.

She dragged in a breath.

A timer beeped, breaking the moment.

“Hey, I made you coffee. It’s on the counter.” He headed to the back, leaving her to notice the holiday decorations and cardboard cherub hanging from the ceiling in front of her, his arrow pointed right at her chest. As if Cupid intended to make her his target. Her heart skipped a beat.

Hailey rolled her eyes at herself. Valentine’s Day wasn’t like Halloween. The veil between worlds wasn’t thin. Magic didn’t happen on Valentine’s Day. She had watched Amy hang the thing yesterday, pulling him out of the packaging from a big party store.

“Bring it on, fat baby,” she muttered and went looking for some coffee.

Preorder links are up:
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Accidental-Valentine-Claire-Gillian-ebook/dp/B00T5JBIXA/ref=sr_1_2
Smashwords: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/516719
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/24264581-accidental-valentine
Roane Publishing: http://www.roanepublishing.com/accidental-valentine.html

Cover Reveal for Better Latte Than Never

Single and cold on Valentine’s Day, Hailey Merritt is not looking forward to working all day at the coffee shop while everyone around her is cheery with romance and she’s stuck trying to figure out her next step in life.
But, when a special bouquet arrives for her from a secret admirer, she decides to reserve judgment on this holiday and find whomever sent the flowers.
Maybe Cupid has a plan to make this her favorite Valentine’s Day ever.

Better Latte Than Never; in Accidental Valentine, a romance anthology releasing on 2/13/15.
http://www.roanepublishing.com/accidental-valentine.html

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Lattes All Around!! and the sad artificial xmas tree

I’m ecstatic to announce that my short story, Better Latte Than Never, is going to be published in the Accidental Valentine anthology released by Roane Publishing in Q1 2015!

All the slaving over words and letting all the numerous characters woo me and tantalize me with their stories is paying off. Watch here for updates and news, and also over on Roane’s blog.

In other news, I’m sitting here procrastinating from holiday decorating. I tried to get a new artificial tree after last year, when my 9 year old artificial tree refused to “fluff” out. The needles seem crushed beyond repair. Of course, my indecision ran a full course until I was too late to buy from the discount sites. I finally ordered one a week ago, but it went out of stock and now won’t be in until later this week or even after Christmas. So we’re back to using the sad, crinkled Charlie Brown tree. I think I’m going to need some festive alcohol to get me motivated here, or maybe I’ll just kick back and write a short story about some couple that falls in love during some foul-up during the holiday season.

My favorite part of Christmas decorations has always been white lights entwined around evergreen branches with Mannheim Steamroller cranked in the background. What’s your favorite part of decorating?

The NaNo Hangover

The opinions on the usefulness of NaNoWriMo definitely abound. And after my 5th year of storming through the words and trying to reach 50,000 words or more for a novel, I can definitely understand the arguments from both sides and I can say it’s not for everyone.

I continue to need NaNoWriMo as a focus or promise of 30 days once a year when I am able to focus and repeatedly get an abundance of words onto the page, whether they be fabulous epiphanies or horrible dreck. It is a tool that I am currently able to use as I work to complete my first novella or novel length manuscript that is fit for publishing.

Of course, in light of this, it means that after pouring all of my creativity and more into November, I’m left a bit dry here in December and a bit aimless. Some authors recommend setting aside the new draft so you can come back to it a bit fresh, but I find that stepping away too long from a project lets it dry up and become unworkable. So I plan to apply the brilliance of Donald Maass, as directed in his Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook as soon as I’m able to shake this creativity funk and stop sleeping through my morning writing time.

Did you do NaNoWriMo this year? How is your writing faring these darkening winter days?