Christmas Eve isn’t as relaxed as it used to be #ROW80 & #WIPpetWednesday

Christmas Eve isn’t a break for me like it used to be. I was just telling the SO the other day that it’s a bit weird not having a Christmas break from like when I was in school because I don’t really know when everyone is done for the semester.

Today is one of my busiest days of the year. And today…oh boy today…It starts around 5:30 in the morning and goes until close to midnight. So I won’t be checking on blogs today, or probably tomorrow. I might get to them on Friday, but I get to drive my mom to the airport Friday, which is a 2 hour drive one way. And Saturday I have a funeral.

Long busy week for this writer! =P

But the good news is, I have been writing. So here’s my ROW80 check in.

1. Write 1667 words a day.

Sun: 0
Mon: 2683
Tues: 2476

2. keep up with all blog posts ROW80, WIPpet, Open When and add in 1 extra post a week

I’ve managed this so far! Just need to finish Open When twice this week. Tomorrow and Saturday. =P

3. Edit at least one chapter a week on something.

I’ve edited two chapters from Amya’s Take Out, my short stories that are companion pieces to For by Grace.

4. crochet one round of border a week

Now, for WIPpet Wednesday ::rubs hands together::

This excerpt is from Grace but not from Grace. I’ve decided to write a series of short stories in companion to For by Grace. I’m not sure if I’ll do it with the other two books in the series. I might, but … who knows. I might know more when I actually do the final edit of Fallen from Grace which should be happening soon.

Anyway. Thus far this week, I’ve written two of these short stories and edited to more. So I have like 5000 words to pick from! Yay! Today you get 3 paragraphs from “Office Hours” for the 12 month because 1 + 2 = 3

I must admit, it’s crazy weird to be writing from Amya’s POV and it’s crazy weird not to have Grace in some of the stories at all. I think that’s why I’ve put off writing these stories for so long. It’s just weird not to have the MC in the world you’ve created and written solely from for YEARS not be there at all.

Anyway, here you go! 3 paragraphs.

Grace turned to leave the room, but Amya couldn’t let her go at that. There was something in the air that hadn’t been cleared, something that needed to be. Amya tugged Grace back, walking into her body and pressing her against the office wall. She cupped Grace’s cheek with her free hand, keeping the one still entwined with Grace’s in place.

“I really like you, Grace.”

When Grace said nothing in response, Amya thought she had stepped too far over the invisible barrier they were fighting with, but when Grace slid a hand up her back, she knew she’d done the right thing. Grace’s mouth descended onto hers, and Amya let out a small moan when they touched. Grace pulled Amya tightly into her, and Amya relaxed, waiting to feel completely taken over by Grace, more so than she already was.

Thanks for stopping by! If you’re interested in joining in WIPpet Wednesday, write up a post with an excerpt from your current work in progress. Make that excerpt somehow correlate to the date and then link up the blog post with all the others right here.

For by Grace COVER REVEAL #authorcorner

Today is the cover reveal for my newest novel For by Grace. This is the start of a new series called Spirit of Grace. I can’t believe it’s going to be released in one month. And I can’t believe how hard it was to wait to reveal this cover to everyone. It should be available for pre-order soon.

I hope if you’re a big part of the book world that you see this cover multiple times today!

Cover Full

Being a Sheriff’s Deputy is not all about saving lives and arresting criminals, and each day Grace wonders if she’ll make it home.

While kids at the schools Deputy Grace Halling visits see her as the knight in blue-cotton armor, people involved in the cases she is dispatched to have a different opinion. She has every confidence in her ability to do her job and arrest criminals. She easily takes down a knife-wielding woman and a drunken combatant teenager without hesitation. Everyone—victim, suspect, or witness—has a story to tell or to lie about, and Grace is never perturbed by their tales.

That all changes when she looks down the barrel of a gun. She loses confidence in her ability as a deputy, she loses trust in herself and fellow officers, and she struggles to stay afloat as shift after shift passes. Grace cannot find her rhythm of being a deputy again. And when the Police Chaplain unexpectedly barges into her life, her personal and professional lives are flipped upside down. Grace struggles to find her even ground, worrying that the next time she stares a murderer in the face will be the last.

There is a rafflecopter giveaway for this reveal too!

Enter Here!

Struggles and WIPpet Wednesday! October 23, 2013

I’m going to be brutally honest in this post. I’m struggling. It’s not just that I’m struggling with writing, because I am, but I’m also struggling financially. Writing isn’t my main income; simply, it can’t be. I in no way make enough to live off it, so my writing has been pushed the back burner.

I’m a full-time student, and this semester I was forced to max out on credits (has to do with requirements and when things are being offered). Three of those classes are history classes, meaning I’m bogged down with reading and papers. This week alone I have three papers due. Next week I have three papers due. On top of this, I work two part-time jobs. I work at a church; it’s supposed to be 10-15 hours a week, but it usually turns into 20-25 hours a week. They pay me gas money, but since this is also related to school, I can’t go and quit.

Secondly, I’m a freelance copy-editor. I usually average one novel to edit a month. However, me editing a novel doesn’t necessarily mean that someone pays me. While I ask for 25% of the fee upfront before I even start editing, people often push back paying me the rest of it. This is currently happening with a client. I’m struggling because I need the money, but I know (at least if  said person is honest) that the client doesn’t have it to pay me right now. Copy-editing is my primary source of income. Sure I have loans and the income from the church, but on average I live off about $800 a month ($500 of that is actual income, the rest is loans). That’s it.

Most people, I don’t think, really get that. That $800 includes rent and utilities, gas and food and anything else that I need during the month. It’s tough being a student, and it’s tough working two part-time jobs that don’t really pay and one where clients can just walk out on me without paying.

In the meantime, between school and church and copy-editing, I write. Or at least I’m supposed to be writing. I have four books coming out in the next year and plans to have books coming out in 2015, but I haven’t written any of them yet. Since September, I think I’ve maybe sat down four or five times to actually write. Writing has always been an outlet of stress for me, and since this semester started, I haven’t been able to do it at all.

We all struggle, and these are only a few of the big things that I’m working through right now. In this day and age, it’s hard to be a full-time student and pay for school. I get no help in bills from parentals, and most people assume that all parents help their children. Well, I got help as a undergraduate to a very small extent, but as a graduate student, it’s all on me. As a graduate student, I’m supposed to be able to live independently and still be able to provide for everything that I need.

Meanwhile, I’m supposed to have a life, have a boyfriend who I actually spend time with, have time to watch television shows that are just airing for the first time, have time to sleep and play with my crazy kittens. It’s just not feasible. So what is it that I’m doing wrong? And how do I fix is so that I can survive in this world I’ve been thrust into?

Now…aside from the struggles, I’m going to share a WIPpet today. I just wrote it. Or will write it in about two seconds.

WIPpet is where you post your current WIP (Work in Progress). Make sure that what you post relates somehow to the date and then link it up with the rest of them. Go read and share the love! Today I wrote for ten minutes for the month of October…I was in class while writing this. Shhh…don’t tell the prof!

Grace’s heart started to pound as the waddling whale got even closer to where she stood. She glanced back and saw Toulouse stood dumbfounded behind her with the punk in tow. The punk’s jaw had dropped and his dark cheeks had a rosy-purplish tint to them.

“His mama,” Grace muttered and took another two steps forward. “Ma’am!”

She didn’t listen. She pushed past Grace and straight to her son. “What you doin’, boy?”

“Oh Mama, I ain’t do nothin’, you know that.”

“I swear to you, don’t lie to me again, boy.”

The punk straightened his shoulders and strained his arms against Toulouse’s hold. Grace skittered over behind the woman and tried to get her attention, but there was nothing she could do.

“Mama, I said, I ain’t doin’ nothing’. These motherfuckers—”

The smack rang throughout the street. Grace wrapped both her arms around the woman’s upper arm and held on as she ripped her hand forward, smacking her child again. Toulouse tugged the punk backward and shoved him into the open car before turning on the woman. Grace had her leg around one of the woman’s large thighs as she tried to knock the heavy woman onto the ground.

Toulouse jumped onto the woman’s back, gripping her hand as they went down. The woman face planted onto the asphalt, wailing out as the air rushed from her lungs. Grace’s head hit the street and then bounced into the tire as she was thrown from the woman’s body. Toulouse was still on top of the woman as Grace shook her head, trying to clear the black spots.

The punk stepped out of the vehicle, crunching his foot down onto Grace’s leg. She cried out in pain before fisting her hand and gritting her teeth. Grace caught a flash of dark blue as two other officers raced over. One wrenched the punk out of the backseat, pulling him through the vehicle backward and the other jumped down to help Toulouse.

Grace rolled over onto her side and grimaced, the pain still radiating through her body, up her leg into her hip and up to her shoulder. She took deep huffing breaths as she tried to work through each passing second. Tears leaked out of her eyes as she scrunched them shut. Sound disappeared as she focused on shoving any bubbling hurt back down and away from her body.

A hand on her arm caused her to pause, and she took two deep breaths before she pried her eyes open. The punk was nowhere in sight, and his mama was sprawled on the ground ten feet away, hands twisted behind her back with cuffs on and her skirt around her waist. Grace released her muscles and melted into the asphalt. Toulouse’s eyes were above as she nodded at him.

“You okay?” he asked.

“Yeah…just dandy,” she replied and rolled onto her back, hitting the tire of his cruiser. “Just fucking dandy.”