Every Beat

Get'cha Head in the Game, it's September!

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“A bee is never as busy as it seems; it's just that it can't buzz any slower.”
-Kin Hubbard

Oh my gosh, guys, so much is going on! I've been super busy for the past few weeks and am just now getting a chance to catch up on everything. Whew! School started and I'm trying to get out of the denial-state of summer ending and get my head in the game.

The next month is going to be such a whirlwind. On September 27th, I'm going to be at the Baltimore Book Festival in the Author's Tent! I'm super excited about it! If you're in the area, stop by, I'd love to see you! I'm even more excited about this event because I found out that Jay Crownover and Jennifer L. Armentrout are going to be there also! They're in the Romance Writers tent and are going to be leading some fun and sexy panels that sound AMAZING! It should be fantastic!

Then, just a few days later, I'm going to be heading down to Tennessee to the Indie Romance Convention. It's a whole weekend celebrating readers, and bloggers, and authors which I'm excited, and a little nervous about. It should be a great opportunity to learn and meet people. It's a lot smaller than my previous signings so I will hopefully have more of a chance to talk with readers!! And discover some great books to read myself!

And as if that wasn't enough, I'm going to be publishing an Every Series novella this month as well! It is called Every Chance, and is to be read after Every Beat and follows one of our favorite characters ;-). For more information, look at the previous post which has an excerpt and look at the "Books" tab at the top of this page for a synopsis. I don't have an exact date yet, but definitely this month! So many exciting things, so little time!

How Did I Get Here?

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“Writing is an exploration. You start from nothing and learn as you go.”
-E.L. Doctorow

I am constantly amazed and humbled by what has happened in my life in the past three months or so. I had no expectations about publishing a book. How can you? How can you possibly know what expect? You know what to hope for. You hope that someone will buy your book. You hope that the person enjoys it. You hope that the person will recommend it to a friend. You hope that someone will like your status on Facebook supporting the book. You hope someone retweets your Tweet about it. But you also know that there are tens of thousands of other ebooks out there so what's to make anyone pick up your book?

I'm not going to lie, I've had some moments of complete doubt in myself. And by some, I mean a ton. But every time something happens that makes that pit form in my stomach, something wonderful happens that reaffirms my confidence, at least for the time being. I hope that the feeling goes away with time, but I'm not sure it ever does. I think when you put something out there to be judged, whether you're an actor, singer, poet, author, painter, whatever, you will always have moments where you worry that your work is complete and utter crap. It makes the kind words and good reviews and friendly support mean that much more.

Instead of focusing on those moments, I think it's important to focus on the good things. Like my friends and my husband who are insanely supportive and celebrate with me every time I hit a milestone. Like the readers who take their time to leave a review saying that they enjoyed their time with Sadie, Gavin, and Jamie. Like every single person who has liked my page on Facebook, or followed me on Twitter or Instagram.

Like the fact that over 5,000 people have taken a chance on an unknown author and purchased Every Beat.

Like the fact that I am #24 on Indie Author News's Top 50 Indie Books for March...something readers *voted* on! Check out the list!

Like the fact that I will be appearing at my first author signing in June! Check out the signing!

Like the fact that I just finished writing my second book, which is incredibly mind-blowingly fantastic.

For every moment of doubt I've had, I've had five of infinite love and support. I am so grateful, just so completely grateful that I have been able to go on this journey and that I am where I am today.

Book #2 is out in my trusted beta-reader/editors' hands and I can't wait to hear what they think and to share it with you. Cassie and Luca are getting restless, so stay tuned for another sneak peek at their story soon!

Thank You and I Don't Have a Title

"Time is what prevents everything from happening at once."
-John Archibald Wheeler

Time is a funny thing. Sometimes it feels like it's racing by and all of a sudden minutes, and days, and months have passed in the blink of an eye. Sometimes, it crawls so slowly that you are sure that a snail could travel a mile before that terrible work meeting you're in will end. And sometimes, the days seem to pass slowly, you are fully aware of every hour and what you are getting accomplished (or not accomplished), yet, all a sudden, six weeks have gone by and you have no idea how it happened. For me, it's that third one.

Every Beat was published six weeks ago today and I feel like it's been forever and like it was just yesterday. It has been a crazy six weeks, and I've loved almost every moment. I have sold over 2,100 books and it is amazing to think that there are 2,100 people out there who have met, are meeting, or will meet Sadie, Gavin, and Jamie. I am thankful for each and every person who has taken a chance on a complete unknown and decided to one-click. Thank you to the bloggers who have helped to promote and review my book so far (Exclusive excerpt and Author Q&A over at Shayna Renee's Spicy Reads http://wp.me/p3OnYR-2Na and 4.5 Star review at Red Cheek Reads http://bit.ly/1CUT3En). Thank you to each person who has added the book on Goodreads, and thank you especially to each person who has taken the time to review the book. It is extremely helpful for authors (and readers) to hear opinions to make informed decisions on how to spend their hard earned money. So thank you for your time and your words. Not every review is a positive one and that is completely okay! I know my book is not for everyone. While I don't always love when negative reviews seem like they are attacking, I do appreciate their opinions. Even with my closest reading buddies, we have differing thoughts on books sometimes, and that's just the way it works. But thank you to those of you who shared positive and kind words, and thank you to those of you who left constructive criticism that will help me grow and make the next book even better.

Speaking of the next book, I'm probably a little more than halfway done with it right now. It is exciting and crazy scary at the same time. With Every Beat, I knew the big plot ideas and how I wanted the story to end (for those of you that have read it, the tent scene and the final scene drove me). With this one, let's just call it I Don't Have a Title, things are unfolding as I go and I'm not quite sure where we are going to end up. It is terrifying and thrilling letting the characters talk and just sort of see what happens. I tried to outline the rest of the story the other night, and I had some ideas, but the characters are not being as helpful as I would like. I keep changing my mind, people's names have changed, their relationships, their jobs. I'm still trying to decide what makes for the best story...and the most drama. (We have to make Joey Potter and Brooke Davis proud.) My main character is being super stubborn and is proving to be her own worst enemy. I've made a complete mess of things which is fabulous, but now that I'm trying to get out of them out of the mess...it seems like I've dug a pretty deep hole. I guess only time will tell.

 

 

 

 

 

As a special treat, I'll include a small teaser from I Don't Have a Title. Keep in mind, this is pre-re-reads, pre-edits, pre-everything, so don't judge too harshly! *Warning: language and mature themes*

“Do you want to make love to me?” he growled. I titled my head and observed him for a moment. His expression gave nothing away. “You hardly seem like someone who makes love,” I replied. “You’re right. I don’t. I fuck. Hard.” I arched off the wall and my breasts brushed against his chest sending tremors through my body. “That’s what I’m offering. No strings. Just a fun night.” “Sweetheart, you aren’t capable of offering me that.” My eyes narrowed at him. They had adjusted to the minimal light but saw no humor in his expression. In fact, he was a blank slate and I didn’t like that I couldn’t tell what he was thinking. “You don’t even know me,” I said, throwing his words back at him. “I know enough. You are confident enough to use a fake trip to gain my attention. You’re a little arrogant in thinking that games could actually fool me. And you are sexy as hell, and I’d like nothing more than to peel you out of this dress and fuck you against this wall with your legs around me, screaming my name.”

The Aftermath

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"Joy is the feeling of grinning on the inside."
-Dr. Melba Colgrove

A little over two weeks ago, I pushed "publish" on Every Beat and there was no turning back, even if I wanted to. It has been a whirlwind of mostly positive feelings and excitement and shock since then. The support from my family and friends has been overwhelming. The support from my husband has been overwhelming. The support from strangers I don't even know has been overwhelming. And fantastically amazing.

I have been obsessively checking my sales on Amazon for the past two weeks simply because every time the number goes up, I am a little in shock. People I DON'T KNOW are buying my book?? Oh my God. Complete strangers all over the country, in different countries, are buying my book?? That's crazy and insane and unbelievable and fantastic. They are hopefully falling in love, choosing sides, gasping, crying, biting their nails, and hopefully, hopefully, smiling. I so desperately want to talk about this story but it is so hard to mention anything without giving something away, so that's all I can say. But PM me on Facebook and I'll talk your ear off ;-).

There are almost 40,000 Kindle books on Amazon. That is more than one can read in an entire lifetime and I am so grateful and humbled and absolutely thrilled that almost 500 people have decided that my little book is one they would like to jump into for a time. That is crazy! I've watched my book become the number one item that shows up when you search for "Every Beat" instead of fifth. I've watched my ranking on Amazon drop until I was in the top 3,000 books on Amazon. 3,000 out of 40,000?? In two weeks?? I am stunned and amazed and thankful.

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So, if you are reading this and have read Every Beat, thank you for taking a chance on me. If you are reading this and haven't read it, what are you waiting for?

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I'm a Published Author...What?!

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"The unread story is not a story; it is little black marks on wood pulp. The reader, reading it, makes it live: a live thing, a story."
-Ursula K. Le Guin
Oh my God, guys, what just happened?!? About eight months after completing the book, and after months and months of edits, I finally figured out which buttons to push to format the manuscript correctly and I clicked "PUBLISH." It said it would take up to 12 hours...but less than 2 hours later I got a text:

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I never thought it would happen so quickly, and I never expected to feel like I do. I've been talking about publishing for months. Even when I was writing, I knew that was the end goal. What I didn't expect was this feeling, this feeling of falling and flying at the same time.

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The only thing I can compare it to is when you are standing in the wings about to enter the stage for a performance. You are a jumble of jitters: excited, nervous, ecstatic, and scared all at the same time. That's how I feel. I can't believe I have a giant piece of myself out there for the world to enjoy, out there for the world to judge. It is terrifying. But the best kind of terrifying. I mean, what if they hate it? What if they rip it to shreds? What if they say it's the worst thing they've ever read? I would like to say I've prepared myself for it. I know everyone won't love it. And I'd like to think that I'm okay with that. But even so, you still kind of hope that it doesn't happen.

I am thankful that I was able to get out of the house today and couldn't sit by my computer refreshing the page to look and see if people had bought my book every ten seconds. I think I would have gone mad. Every Facebook post or new Twitter follower I've had today has made me want to jump for joy and has kept this ridiculous smile on my face for the last twelve hours.

I know I probably should have expected it, but the outpouring of love and support I have received from friends and co-workers today has blown my mind. If I didn't already think I had the world's greatest friends, then I definitely do now. I could never have guessed that they would have jumped at the opportunity to tell me "congratulations" or to say "I bought your book." It is so overwhelming and I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. You are amazing.

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I could go on and on forever thanking those of you who have showed faith in me today, so I'll leave you with one last thought.

I remember writing stories in elementary school...none of which got very far because what eight-year-old has enough discipline to write a book, but I remember them vividly. In high school, I entertained my friends with a teen drama based on us full of all the teen angst you could hope for. When I joined Facebook nine years ago, I wrote that it was a dream to publish a novel one day, never really thinking that it could actually happen.

But today it did. Today I was able to achieve something I have wanted to do for practically my entire life. And it is amazing.

It feels like I'm falling and flying all at the same time.

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Content Edit = Complete!

"It is perfectly okay to write garbage—as long as you edit brilliantly."
-C. J. Cherryh

We are closing in on the finish line! I finished my last content edit (where I change or fix actual plot points, word choice, etc.) this afternoon! I'm very excited, I've been working on this for months!

That means that all I have left to do is a final copy edit (where I fix all the silly typos and grammatical errors) before I publish! I've set a goal to have it published by Christmas and it looks like I'll be able to make the deadline.

Editing is a long process and I have several friends that were gracious enough to offer up their time and services to help me. I know it was a lot of work, but I appreciate everything they did...it has definitely helped strengthen my characters and my story.

I am also appreciating that I can listen to Christmas music as I blog because I have to work in quiet to edit and it's helping get me in the holiday spirit. I hope you are getting there, too! And Every Beat should be available just in time to gift to your fellow readers for the holidays:-).

A First Look

"A bee is never as busy as it seems; it just that it can't buzz any slower."
-Kin Hubbard

I feel like my schedule, or maybe just life in general, ebbs and flows with how busy a person is. It is too busy sometimes and not busy enough other times. I can go for weeks with no real plans besides work where I have plenty of time, but then there are weeks where everything seems to happen and there is no time. And it doesn't matter how hard I try not to let it happen...it's like it's inevitable. white Now, I'm back in the "ebb" part of the cycle and finally have time to get back on track. I'm back to working on edits for Every Beat. I am in the middle of the first round of copy edits which means the end is near! I am checking for all those typos that tend to drive me crazy when I read books in an effort not to annoy the wonderful, amazing readers who for some reason decide to buy my book. I will keep you posted when I have a definite release day which should hopefully be in the next month or so!

I'm now up on Goodreads and my wonderful husband made a button for it to go on this page to match the others so everything you need is all in one place. I am incredibly thankful that he knows how to work everything because there's no way I would've been able to do it alone.

417027_10150734457702028_1843042659_nLast, but not least, I did promise a teaser, just a little piece from the beginning of the book that hopefully makes you want to read more ;-).  

   As I started to move along with the music, I felt all the tension release from my body. Dancing had always been my escape, the place I went where no one else could touch me. I was safe, I couldn’t be hurt, not by my mother or boys or…anyone. I was invincible.      I closed my eyes and let the music take me over. I could feel it pumping through my body as if it had become part of my blood. It was crowded, hot, and sticky and I was relishing in it. I put my hands over my head and I could hear Henley giggling next to me. I smiled and, not wanting to witness Jude’s promise to get “handsy,” kept my eyes shut.      I continued dancing, my body pulsing to the rhythm. Henley’s giggles seemed to be getting further away, but I couldn’t make myself care. A bead of sweat slid down my neck when suddenly, I felt a strong body come behind me. It wasn’t unusual for me to dance with a guy, and as long as he had rhythm and kept his hands to himself, it was okay by me.      I could tell he was tall, maybe a little over six feet. His hips moved easily with mine, my back fit perfectly against his chest, which I could tell was made of hard muscle. We continued gently rocking to the music when I felt one of his hands come around to my stomach and hold me flush against him. My eyes flew open, but not because that was usually a move I didn’t allow with an unknown dance partner. It was because I got this rush of heat that ripped through my body like a fire through kindling. My heart beat faster and the spot between my thighs pulsed.      I wanted to turn around, to see this man that elicited such a response from my body unwillingly. “Don’t.”      My body tensed. It was difficult to breathe, to think. It was like I was suffocating, but couldn’t get enough at the same time. His head was titled down to mine, his mouth grazing my ear in a slow, seductive way. “Don’t turn around. Because if you do, you’ll use your eyes to tell you how you feel. If you don’t, you’ll let your body tell you how you feel. You’re safe, I promise.”      Holy fuck. If I had been in a more stable, non-inebriated state of mind, that might have freaked me out. That’s like, something serial killers say. But in that moment, I couldn’t move even if I had wanted to. For some unknown reason, I did feel safe in his arms. I was sure he could feel my heart beating double time, pounding in my chest. The slow fire that had started low in my core was now rushing through my body. I had never felt more alive.      I leaned my head back against his chest as my body burned. He pulled me closer, if that was even possible. We relaxed into each other and just felt the music. His intoxicating scent that I could only describe as man, hot, sweaty, sexy man, engulfed me and everything else faded away.      In what seemed like hours and mere seconds at the same time, my mystery man started to pull away. I felt his hot breath by my ear, his mouth again almost caressing it, and a shiver ran down my spine. I didn’t even know how a shiver was possible in the heat of the club.      In his deep, masculine voice, I heard “Thank you for the dance, pretty girl. You have truly made my evening.”

The Beginning

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"From small beginnings come great things."
-Proverb

 

Hello everyone! Before I do anything else, I'd like to thank you for visiting my website and taking the time to read my blog! If you feel like I do, there are never enough hours in the day to do everything I want to do, so thank you for spending a part of your day here.

FlynnI am here because <drum roll, please> I have finished writing my first book! Those of you who have written your own, or write at all, know that a lot of hard work goes into it but it feels so good when you finish! To be honest, writing has always been something that I have loved to do. From a young age, stories captured my imagination and they are part of the reason I majored in theatre in college...because I wanted to be a part of and tell people stories. I remember writing stories as a child and in high school, I added writing and publishing a novel to my bucket list. It seemed like a far away dream that would be difficult to reach, but thanks to new technologies and the ever-growing indie publishing scene, that dream is now a reality!Every Beat Cover Art

My first book, Every Beat, will be published soon! (Synopsis) I finished writing it earlier this year and some wonderful, trustworthy, amazing friends of mine have helped me edit it (so hopefully I can avoid those pesky typos that are distracting). I am currently finishing the editing process and it will be available as soon as I am done!

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Check back soon for a Goodreads link and a teaser;-).

I'm happy to meet you all and as Humphrey Bogart said:

Casablanca