Thursday, June 9, 2016

Forever and More

Here I sit on the floor,
Bathed in pain that feels forever and more.
Lying at my feet
Are the broken pieces of my life,
Cut from chaos, forged in strife.
How will I be put back together again?
When I don't have the bond, I don't hold the pen.
I take each piece, tell it goodbye,
Knowing each is a sacrifice, necessary to die.
With each farewell, the pain becomes more,
Until I don't feel my heart beat within its core.
But there is a hope that glints off each piece,
It mirrors a Light that can never cease.
That Light has the bond, holds the pen,
To put my life back together again.
Broken I may be,
But destroyed I am not.
The Light has the last say,
For it with His blood I have been bought.
Forever and more He will be my Light,
The bond, the pen, and the giver of a new life.

Friday, March 11, 2016


1 Peter 4:10 says ‘Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.’ So when God called me  to be a writer, I knew it was to be for His Kingdom and His purpose. I’ve always known that I had the God given gift to write stories, but until I was called, I had only used the gift for me. 

So I found myself in a daunting place, unknown territory-how was I to break beyond the borders of self and use my gift of writing to serve others, to reach a lost world for Jesus?
Many times I sat staring at a blank page, wondering how and where to begin. The fear and trepidation of baring my soul to a world with a story from my heart was overwhelming. What would people think of me? Am I really good enough to do this? 

These questions plagued my mind every time I sat before that blank page. This was a cycle I could not break until I shifted from myself to my Savior. I realized this story wouldn’t bare my soul, it would bare His! This story wouldn’t be for my recognition, it would be for His! I am not good enough to write this story, but Christ in me is!

Until I put fear aside and came boldly to His throne of grace in my time of need, was I able to begin to pour words onto a page. In three months I had written almost a quarter of a million words, effortlessly, all to His glory. Only a few months later, my novel was published, again all to His glory. 

Those words I wrote comprised a story that would display the redemptive love of the God I serve, a gracious Father who calls us to use our gifts with boldness for His Kingdom.

So I leave you with where I started- 1 Peter 4:10-How am I to use this gift of writing to serve others? How are you to use your gift to serve others? You see, it’s all in your approach! You have to be bold and go for it! Just begin, knowing it’s for your Savior and His glory! Have the courage to boldly say, “Here I am God, send me!”

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Researching Your Publisher

I have been very silent as of late. With the exception of yesterday's poem, I haven't kept up with my posts as I should have. But don't get angry with me yet, there's a good reason for it! I can't divulge too much information without getting myself in a pickle, but I will attempt in the most sly way possible to pass on what I've personally experienced.

I have been published for three years exactly now. I will never forget opening the email offering to put my baby in print. It was one of the happiest moments of my life, a real dream come true. After only a few rejection letters from other publishers, I was elated that I got a bite so quickly. I was happy, excited, proud, and most of all, ignorant.

You read it right-ignorant. I had no clue that I shouldn't take the first offer thrown at me. In the midst of desperately wanting to get published, I lost sight of the fact that you shouldn't trust just anyone with your creative work. Naivete at it's best.

Don't judge me just yet! I did do the initial research, albeit blind, but I did it. I bought the current Writer's Market Guide and read every page. Every. Single. Page. I circled the publishers I would submit to. Then I checked out all their websites, googled until my eyes googled, and even called a few for good measure. I thought I was being thorough. But hindsight is twenty-twenty. It wasn't thorough enough.

Here I sit, three years later, with not a single royalty paid to me from Seven Days Normal, and with only one incomplete sales report which I believe to be falsified, and not in my favor.

So what advice can I give concerning such a phenomenon?
1. Don't go with the first publisher until you have done extensive research. Do more than just google. Do more than just call. DO MORE!
2. Check out how many books they've sold within the last five years or so. Have the numbers fluctuated significantly?
3. Contact other authors to see how happy they are with the way they and their work has been handled. Many authors have a Twitter account, Facebook page, or website that you can post to.
4. Always have a lawyer look over the contract(which I did, but that's for another post).
5. Check out how much publicizing or marketing they do for their authors. If it's zilch, pass. That's right, move on. At the least, they can send you a $50 advance to place ads on If they don't want to work with you there at all, tell them to kiss your work goodbye.

The moral of the story: don't get ahead of yourself and go with the first publisher that hands you a pen to sign that pretty contract without first making sure they are legit. And by legit I mean they aren't going to stiff you on your royalties, shirk your phone calls, ignore your emails, make empty promises, blah, blah, blah, you get it. Be smart about your work. Seeing it in book form is absolutely awesome, but having it in print means nothing if you are stuck in contract with a publisher who doesn't uphold their end, and has found the loopholes to legally do so.

I'm stuck in limbo, with four more years in a contract that will do nothing for me. I've written another novel and started the third, with no one to submit them to, because I bit when I should have turned. But writing is my happiness so I'm turning back to my blog. Yay! I'll try to keep it current, I promise!

Write on and ink well!

Monday, December 28, 2015


I'm bored and snowed in so I shall write a poem. And go....

He comes and he goes,
like a comet in its throes,
bright for a second,
with only one intent,
to wreak a blind havoc,
with every life spent.
Does he not know
I am privy to the light,
with my own cosmic chaos,
quickening and bright?
Deceit is not a charm,
but instead a fading star,
destined for sudden harm.
Yet wait, and he will come again
to burn and to blight,
but I am the charmer,
master of the fading light.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Sample Chapter from 'Taffy'

I have 100% completely finished 'Taffy,' my second novel. Yay for me! Editing an ongoing process which never ends until the book is in print.  Please enjoy a sample chapter from 'Taffy' and take it with a grain of salt. I'm sure by the time you read this it's been thrown in the scrap pile to be rewritten ha. I've included a blurb so you'll get an idea what the book is about before you delve into this scenario. There may still be some rough spots, as a professional editor hasn't gotten a hold of it yet.
Please remember to be wise and don't plagiarize!

After being abandoned and forsaken, 18 year old Cassidy Harmon escapes her hometown with intentions to start anew in Pearl City, Oahu, in the far away oasis of Hawaii. Attending the local university and surfing are Cass's only plans and afford her with a temporary peace to help numb the suffering. However, the past continues to haunt her, turning her bitter and cynical, and untrusting of everyone she meets. Carrying the weight of unforgiveness, Cass feels as though she can never be a friend again, or find one, until Will Kirk, a.k.a. Taffy crosses her path. Leery of his motivations and worried that she cannot return the friendship he offers, she is forced to lean on him when she learns she cannot stay in her paradise due to a scholarship oversight. With a promise to help her earn the money to stay at school, Cass has no choice but to trust Taffy completely, and in turn finds herself reevaluating her stance on forgiveness, friendship, and even love. 

The stares are now easier to ignore, even though I can see the question behind everyone’s eyes. ‘What were they doing out there in the dark?’ But because I only care about one person’s thoughts at the moment, I move easily through the bodies and to the table Taffy still inhabits. I cut him off in mid-sentence, receiving a few disconcerted looks from his groupies. “Wanna go for a walk?”
He looks flabbergasted for a split second, like he can’t believe I would even want to-did he really expect me to cling to Lolani all night? He recovers and says, “Excuse me ladies, I must appease everyone’s affections tonight. I will be back.”
The hell you will, I almost say, but instead give the girls a saccharine smile before turning and leading the way. I hear Taffy’s footsteps behind me, and his greetings to guests as he passes them by. I believe I hear a quavering in his voice, and wonder if he he realizes his little ploy has been debunked. Surely he didn’t think me so stupid as to believe Lolani really wants to be with me. I could see where he would be confident Lolani would fall for it, but me?
That match in between my ears tries to spark again, but I grit my teeth against it, refusing to give into a fickle emotion now. I’ve got to have a clear head to say what I need to say, to get him to say what he needs to say. 
“Are you enjoying yourself?” he asks as we escape the noisy crowd. I’m still walking, trying to get him as far as possible from everyone. When I feel like we’ve distanced ourselves, I stop and answer in a bland tone, “It’s fine.”
“Good,” he nods a little too vigorously, trying to seem convincing, but I’m not fooled. Looking in his eyes now, his face, I can see he’s nervous. I’m so used to seeing him flippant and jovial, that any deviation is now easy to mark.
Good. The ball is in my court. Hopefully.
“You?” I ask in return.
“It’s great! Did you try the poi? It’s fantastic.”
He starts garbling on about it, but I don’t really hear him. I’m trying to find a way to lead into what I need to say, but don’t quite know how. Then I decide I just have to go for it, blurt it, like he does whenever he needs to say something. Forget trying to be suave. I’ve never had a knack for it anyways. “I’m not going anywhere.”
He stops in mid sentence and seems confused for a moment. And then his eyes brighten a little as he thinks he’s understood my statement. “Oh, I know. You’ll earn the money to stay. I’m sure you will. Look how much you’ve saved so far.”
“That’s not what I mean,” I tell him, refraining from sighing. The one time I want him to be able to read my mind, he doesn’t. 
“Then what...” he trails off, his brow crinkled again. He looks at me sideways, clearly confused. Jesus, why does this have to be so hard!
“I mean that I’m not leaving...”
“Leaving what...the luau?” he asks.
“No...” I pause, willing my tongue to form the most difficult words I’ve ever had to say.
“Huh?” he asks, not hearing me. I barely said it above a whisper. I clear my throat, wait several agonizing seconds, and then say again, “You.”
“Oh,” he mouths, and quickly looks to the ground. He stuffs his hands in his pockets and toes the sand. I know this to mean he’s uncomfortable. Maybe I know him better than I thought.
Or maybe not. He’s silent for a moment, not making eye contact, not smiling, nothing, just digging his shoe in the sand and fingering the candy in his pants pockets. I simply can’t take it anymore and hear myself blurt, “I need to know that you aren’t going anywhere either...that you’ll stick with me.”
I thought I would feel a weight lift with the hefty admittance, but I don’t. And it’s because he’s not responding as I hoped he would. He takes a step back and leans against a large boulder, with his hands still in his pockets and his shoulders slumped. I hear him mumble my name, as though I’m being difficult. There’s a slight edge to it, “Cassidy...”
“I need to know it Will. I need to.”
I hear the urgency in my voice, despite trying to keep it at bay, and so does he. He finally looks at me, but only for a short, nerve racking second. And then he says, with a frustrated sigh, “Let’s not go into it right now.”
I think for a moment how wonderful it would feel to throw a fistful of sand in his face. I’m trying to confess feelings, feelings that I have no business flirting with, and he’s acting as though I’m nothing but an annoying child. I grit my teeth, and say as evenly as I can, “Please talk to me. Please.”
Again he looks up to me and this time holds eye contact. He lets out another long, drawn out sigh, which sounds defeated. “Okay,” he acquiesces. I swallow the lump in my throat and nod back, readying myself to reveal feelings that he should already have guessed by now. 
I’m lost for a moment, wondering where to start, when he says, this time with a little more ardency, “Trust me Cass. You can say anything.”
The weight does lift, and I nearly buckle from the release. This is the Taffy I know. This is the Taffy I need, the one who cares, the one who listens, the one who wants me to put my confidence in him. It makes it so much easier to confide. “I can’t handle any more loss in my life...I was hoping you knew that by now,” I add with a little more heat. He just stares, his expression blank, so I delve a little deeper into the black abyss I call my past, hoping to drive my point home. “You know damn good and well what it feels like to be abandoned and yet you can just pass me off and leave me, like it’s okay, like it won’t matter to me? And this after touching me the way you did yesterday...”
“Whoa Cassidy,” he interrupts, his face soft again, “What makes you think that I’m leaving?”
I bristle, my intelligence insulted. “What makes me think you’re leaving? Maybe the fact that you are trying to dump me off on Lolani so that you won’t have to deal with me anymore! And that’s just one example! How about nagging me to hang out with my roommate? Or getting me a job where I slave away for eight hours a day, eight hours where you don’t have to pretend to be my friend!”
“I never pretend,” he says, stern. His brow is wrinkled and there’s a shadow over his face, dark and worried. And I’m glad for it. I don’t want, nor can I deal, with his flippancy at the moment. This situation is life changing, and I don’t want his usual coolness to berate any of my feelings. 
“Oh really? Then why did you pull this bull crap tonight? Huh?”
“I...I don’t know how to say it...”
“You better say something Will! I would never dump you off on anyone else!”
“I wasn’t...”
“Don’t you want me anymore?”
  I clap my hand over my big mouth. It wasn’t something I meant to blurt, but it’s out there now for all the world to hear. And as those words reach Taffy’s ears, his expression changes yet again, and in less than a second, he’s extremely close, his hands clutching mine and his voice heavy with conviction. “Never, never, never let it enter your mind that I don’t want to be with you. There’s not a moment that passes that I don’t want to be with you. There’s not a second that goes by that I’m not thinking of you. Do you understand me? You are my best friend.”
Every cell in my body has heard. And yet, no, I don’t understand. His actions don’t coincide with his words. “Then why...”
“Stop Cassidy,” he interrupts, squeezing my hands all the harder, “You’re thinking too hard about it. Put your expectancies aside and just trust me. I do want you with me, okay?”
In what way, I almost ask, but don’t. That’s the forbidden territory that I alluded to while talking with Lolani, and I can’t bring myself to cross the line just yet, not when he’s pledged to never leave. That admission suffices. I have to let it suffice.
“Okay.” I nod my head and slip my hands out of his. My skin burns from his touch, making it hard to look him in the eyes. I take a few steps back and sit on the damp sand. He follows. The surf creeps up to our feet, wetting our shoes, while tiny crab scurries by, its shell sparkling in the moonlight. We watch the foamy water retreat back to the sea, a calmness now filling the air.
“Feel better?” he asks, watching the crab hurry away.
Not really, but I say, “Sure.”
“That doesn’t sound very convincing.”
“I’m fine,” I smile, trying to put his mind at ease. And I am, somewhat. I’m just not satisfied. I feel like a car who’s gas tank only ever gets filled half way. It’s enough to go on, but it’s still not fulfilling. For once, I’d just like to be topped off. 
“Do you just want to sit here awhile?”
“Yes,” I say, giving him another light smile.
“Wow,” he grins back, “Two smiles in a row. You sure you’re okay?”
“Am I that bad?” I ask. Surely I smile. Don’t I?
“You hardly ever smile Cass. But you should. It lights up the sky.” 
I feel my face flush at his words and I turn my head so he doesn’t see. A flame has been lit, starting when he grabbed my hands, and is now burning steadily. His compliment only fueled the fire. “Thanks.”
“It does, ya know,” he says sweetly, “How could I ever try to get rid of you, with a smile like that.”
I take a deep breathe, smothering in the heat and say, “Well, at least you like something about me. My freckles and big feet definitely gross you out. And my hair. And my long legs.”
I receive no smart aleck answer in return. In fact, it’s terribly quiet, the only noise the constant flow of the ocean and the distant, muffled noises of the luau. I turn my flushed face back to him, thinking maybe that crab got a hold of his usually loose tongue. He’s staring at me, his chocolate eyes searing.
“What is it?” I stammer. 
“You really think you gross me out? Jesus,’re the most beautiful girl I’ve ever seen. I thought you knew that.”
Common sense says that I should ask why then does he make fun of me, but I’m smoldering now. All I can manage is, a little breathlessly, “You could have fooled me.”
“I wasn’t trying to,” he says softly. 
I turn away again, scared to death where this conversation may lead. His velvety voice, the persuasive gentleness in his dark eyes, the closeness of his God, does he wants to kiss me? 
I want it.
I don’t. 
What would follow a kiss? Chaos or Heaven? How does one go from friends to something more, especially when it has been decided that friendship is best? How is that bridge successfully crossed? How is that line erased without leaving a smudge?
It’s for the best Cassidy...
“Should we go back to the party?” I ask, even though it’s the last thing I want to do. I’m in unknown, dangerous territory, and scrambling to find neutral ground. I can’t kiss him. Not yet. Not yet. 
“If you want,” he says, and I think I hear a disappointment there, paradoxically mixed with relief- the same exact emotions I’m feeling. I force myself to stand, dismissing my wobbly legs and the heat that still lingers on my flesh. “I’m sure your groupies miss you. We might want to get you back.”
“Jealous?” he asks with a smug grin. 
Yes, very.
“No,” I snort. “But...”
“You know,” he interrupts, “What do you say to a swim?”
My jaw drops and it takes me a few moments to gather a coherent thought. “A swim? You’re kidding...”
“Um, um” I stutter, clearing my throat, “You told me you don’t’s dark...sharks...”
Stop it Cass! How many times have you tried to get him to swim with you!
A million. But then I wasn’t trying to avoid close proximity. 
“The waves are pretty gentle right now,” he coaxes, taking his sneakers and socks off. I can’t believe, after months of trying to get him into the water, he wants to swim now. At night. When we’re at a birthday party. And when this place is known for sharks and nasty jelly fish. I don’t even know if he can swim. And I don’t know if I’m strong enough to pull him out safely if he can’t.
He reads my mind.
“The phase of the moon isn’t right for jellyfish. And there hasn’t been a shark fatality in a decade on this beach.”
“Can you swim?” I manage to ask.
“I’ve lived on an island for almost fifteen years. Of course I can swim, genius.”
“You told me you don’t swim!”
“I swim,” he shrugs, “Just not that often. You coming?”
He tosses his flannel shirt on top of his shoes, revealing a thin, white shirt underneath. He leaves his jeans on and turns, wading into the waves. 
“You’ve got to be kidding me,” I mutter, jerking my sneakers off. I discard my tank top and throw it in the pile, leaving on my sports bra and shorts. I’m so nervous, my stomach has turned into a giant knot. “Wait up, geez. No need to rush off into our death.”
“Don’t be a chicken,” he teases, reaching for my hand. Before I know what’s going on, I’m yanked into the rolling ocean, the waves two feet over my head. I open my eyes, but the water is as black as midnight. I don’t feel his hand on my wrist anymore, so I propel up, gasping for breath as I surface. He’s already there, his dark eyes twinkling like the stars. “You can wipe that ornery grin off your face! And if you dunk me again, I’m gonna drown you!” I warn, not wanting to play. I’ve never swam at night in the ocean, and even though I’m not the least bit afraid of water, I can hardly see my surroundings. I’m disoriented, nervous, and still smoldering from earlier. He’s clearly got the advantage over me.
“Loosen up!” he says, his arms raising. I’m dunked again as his hands come down on top of my wet head, and under I go, getting a mouth full of cold, bitter salt water. I scramble back up, hearing Taffy guffawing like a delirious child.
“Stop it Will! I don’t like this!”
“You big baby! Have some fun! You’ve been begging me to swim with you for months, and now that I am, you can’t handle it!” 
He continues to laugh as I put a little distance between us. Even though the water is cool, I can feel the warmth of his body. And I don’t want to be dunked again. But my eyes are adjusting to the dark and the water so I relax a little, and let my body bob up and down, willing my heart to calm down. “I can handle it,” I counter, “I just need a minute. I’ve never been in the ocean at night. It’s a little...”
“Scary?” he asks. I can see his bright smile and the sparkle of his eyes. He swims closer and I can make out the white of his shirt, and the glow of his light skin. “I won’t let anything happen to you. Don’t you trust me?”
Why does he have to ask such things? Why does he have to say them with such sweetness and warmth in his voice? Why must he make me burn and ache like this!
“Of course,” I mumble, but my words are drowned by the waves. A few crash into us, moving us to the shore, only to pull us perilously back out, deeper into the black water. Taffy moves without effort, going under and up, spewing water playfully in the air like a dolphin, not a damn care in the world, while I float helplessly around, consumed with the ethereal glow of his white skin and chocolate eyes. 
“You have no fear of death, do you?” I ask, shaking my head, half disgusted, half entranced, “You gamble like you are made of money, you eat candy like there’s no other food in the world, you hang out with thugs and the homeless like they’re family, and you swim in the dark as if it’s nothing, as if we couldn’t both lose our lives out here to a shark or some other nasty creature. Does anything phase you?”
I lose sight of him for a short second, only to find him surface in directly in front of me, his nose two inches from mine. His breath is sweet and his wet skin still radiates a delicious warmth that makes my face prickle with heat. His arms brush mine as he slowly moves them to stay afloat. He says, his voice as smooth as the black sky, “There’s only one thing that phases me. Thought you would have guessed that by now.”
“I’ll give you one guess.”
“I really don’t know,” I admit. I can’t think at the moment. My brain has turned into a cotton ball, and I feel like I’ve swallowed one too. He’s so close, and it’s making it hard to concentrate, hard to talk. I can see the outline of his mouth in the moonlight, and how the water has wet his lips.
“How have you not guessed it by now, Cassidy? The only things that phases me is you.”
“Oh,” I breath. Me? My body is aching to be in his arms. I’m as light as air, and yet as heavy as the ever-undulating waves around us. I’m agonizingly torn, wanting to touch him, yet wanting to run away. 
Stop it, I tell myself, squaring my shoulders against the fear, this is Taffy. This is Will. You can trust him. Just let go. Let go and let it happen. He’s not leaving you.
I let out a deep breath and reconcile my thoughts to the feelings swirling around in my soul. I relax and move forward, closing the distance between our bodies. Our legs touch as we float in the mighty Pacific. I can feel the beating of his heart in his chest, and yes, it rivals mine. The smile on his face melts and his mouth is left opened, his lips full and undeniably inviting. I can imagine how they would feel on mine, on my wet skin, and the thought leaves a trail of fire blazing through every limb. It is magnified by the impeccable glow of his white skin, the beauty of his smooth brown eyes, but most of all, the fact that maybe, just maybe he really wants me too.
“You’re beautiful too,” I whisper. Despite the sound of the ocean, he hears me. He, as well, lets out a deep breath, as if trying to muster some courage. Do I finally have him flustered? Do I finally have the advantage? 
No. I never could. Not with this man. He has me fully, always will. And I surrender to it as he lifts a hand and touches my cheek with a trembling finger. I want to throw my arms around his neck, but I don’t know if he can hold us both up. Instead I say, a little louder this time, “I’ve always thought so. I just didn’t know it at first...”
“Not like you,” he interrupts. He’s breathless, very much so. “I’m not anything compared to you. I don’t see how a girl like you could ever give me the time of day. Everything about you’re so perfect.”
I feel the tear slip from my eye. It lands on his hand, but he doesn’t move it away. His fingers linger against my skin. “I’m sorry,” I say swiping at my eyes. I didn’t even know I was close to tears, but how could I not be? He thinks I’m perfect. Me, the girl who’s been nothing but crass and rude and gruff and withdrawn...
Way to ruin the moment, Cass.
“I’m not perfect,” I say, my voice catching. “I’m sorry.”
I will my eyes to look back into his. They are shinier than before, as if they are filled with tears too. His voice is husky as he says, “Don’t apologize to me. I want you just the way you are.”
“You really want me?” I ask with doubt. My heart jumps happily though, skipping beat after elated beat.  I wipe another tear off my cheek. 
“Cassidy,” he whispers, his face closing in, “How could you ever doubt it?”
This is it. This is what I want. Yes...
He suddenly jerks away, his head turning to the beach. I follow, and see flames dancing in mid air, hovering above the sand like bright, blazing ghosts. I realize that it’s torches, and it doesn’t take more than a second to hear the loud voices of Lolani and his surfer gang cutting it up on the beach, most of them obviously drunk. I see the glossy shine of a few surf boards. I sigh, knowing that the moment is truly ruined. 
“It’s Lolani.”
“Yep,” Taffy sighs in return, inching away, dropping his fingers from my face. “Looks like they’re gonna night surf. I wonder what took them so long. Come on, let’s go in. I don’t feel like getting a board to the head.” 
“Let’s swim that way, and then come up on the beach down there,” I suggest, pointing to our left.
“Too late,” says Taffy with a short laugh. “Looks like they found our clothes.”
Sure enough, as we fight the waves going in, the torchlight illuminates Lolani holding up my tank top. “Where’s my beach bunny! I found her shirt! Wish I could find the rest of her clothes!”
“They’re on my bedroom floor!” someone says, causing the gang to erupt in boisterous laughter. I hear Taffy giggle, and I flog him in the arm, all the warmth gone now. “Shut up! Don’t goad them!”
“You have to admit Cass, that was funny.”
We reach sand and stand up, revealing ourselves to the group. We’re met with a slew of perverted remarks and raunchy cat calls. I blush, thankful that the firelight isn’t too bright, and stick my nose in the air. I throw Lolani a nasty glare. I get a conspiratorial wink in return, along with a playful shove in the shoulder. 
“Been busy, Taffy, makamaka?” he calls. Taffy smiles wickedly and says something in Polynesian, making Lolani laugh all the louder. But despite wanting to get mad, my heart skips again. We’ve been caught, and even though it was innocent, Taffy doesn’t seem embarrassed, and he doesn’t deny anything. I almost feel pleased. He’s not ashamed to be seen with me. He’s not afraid to show that we could actually be more than just friends. 
We gather our clothes, ignore the onslaught of innuendos, and make our way quietly up the hill to the road. I put on my dry tank top and wash the sand off at a fountain. We both dress with nothing but the street lamps watching us. It’s a comfortable silence, but I feel a buzzing in my bones. There is electricity binding the space between us with a slight popping, easy to acclimate to but impossible to displace. And thank goodness, I don’t want to. I like it there. I feel like we’re finally on the same page, bound together like words in a sentence. 
I wait for him to tie his sneakers, wondering how I can get the moment back Lolani and his gang stole from us. Do I wait for him to make the move? Do I just grab him and initiate it myself.
I have no idea what to do.
“I’ve got to get home,” he says abruptly. His shoes are tied and he stands, sticking his hands in his pockets. The moment is lost, and I know not to force it. He doesn’t want to make a move, at least not right now. His face is soft, but it’s easy to see he’s very tired. There’s a slump in his shoulders, and his eyes have lost a little of their usual brightness, just as they had yesterday. I can see he doesn’t feel well again.  “You’re tired, aren’t you?” 
“Yeah, I am. I had a great time have no idea...”
“Yes, I do,” I say, giving him a huge smile. He mirrors it, shaking his head a little. “It’s as bright as day out here.”
I keep the smile on my face as I force myself to turn my feet towards the dorms. It’s quite a walk, but I have the night to ponder. I will relive every single moment, and linger on how it felt to have him so close for a brief moment. I will beat down the anxiety and fear, and revel in the past hour.
And there’s always tomorrow.
“If I don’t see you tomorrow,” I call with a wave, “be good.”
“Yes ma’am,” he calls, the smile still on his face, “Always. Aloha Cassidy.”
“Aloha Will.”
Until tomorrow.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Blog Hop

I committed to doing a blog hop awhile back, not knowing that I'd be moving to a new house within days of making the promise to participate, which if you've had to move at the last minute, you know my misery. I scrambled to get as many things packed as I could and get three children ready too, so the blog hop was put on the back burner, which was then forgotten. Oops. But here I am, finally getting to what I promised a few other authors I'd do. So check them out below, and don't be a well-intentioned procrastinator like me!

Here is my part in the hop-I get to answer some questions about myself. Yay! That's always fun.

i. What am I working on?
I am currently working on my second novel, titled 'Taffy.' Set in Hawaii in 1978, I follow the same theme as in 'Seven Days Normal': redemptive love. It's been slow going, but I plan to have it completed by the end of this year and submitted by spring of next year. 
Having been abandoned and betrayed, Cass Harmon escapes to the island of Oahu to make a new beginning. Promising herself she would never trust again, she finds herself thrown in a friendship with Will, aka Taffy, whose philosophy on life forces Cass to reevaluate her view of the world and herself. ii. How does my work differ from others of its genre?
If I'm going to lump my work into the genre of Christian romance, then the most noticeable difference is the gritty, real world scenarios that my writing centers around. By doing this, I hope to reach a larger audience by being relatable. Life tends to knock us down more than giving us cushy, feel good moments, as most Christian novels tend to focus on. It's in the painful, harsh, and often gut wrenching times that we learn who we are, and those of us who want to make the best of it do, but often at a big price. iii. Why do I write what I do?
If I can't pass on what I've learned, then I have no purpose, no legacy to leave. My life experiences beg to be let out in the form of stories, and even if I only reach one person with my writing, I've accomplished what I was put on this earth to do. I write to help people know what what the true purpose of love is. iv. How does your writing process work?
My writing process is void of a process, if that makes sense! I don't do outlines, nor do I even start with the end or the beginning. I just write specific scenes and then put it all together, making sure I have a plot, a conflict, and believable characters. It works for me!

Here are some authors/bloggers to check out!

Neal Abbott is the author of 25-30 short stories, 4 novels, a novella, and 3 non-fiction works. Neal’s fiction deals with the struggle between what a person wants to do and what a person should do, demonstrating the battle between selfishness and sacrifice. His non-fiction work contains a pair of books that encourage and motivate the Creative Writer, and his other book in an analysis of the classic American novel The Great Gatsby. Neal enjoys reading Modern American writers of the Lost Generation, Neo-Classical European writers from the 1700s, and really enjoys Russian authors.

Laurel Martinez has been writing in some form or another for as long as she can remember. She has always loved to write but only recently began rediscovering that passion. Her Heart of Wander blog was born out of pure necessity – a desperate desire to get her thoughts down anywhere but her head.  It has undergone many changes since it’s inception but it has remained steady in it’s heart and voice. Laurel recently began her first novel, but continues to stay true to her first love-blogging.

Jill Sinklier is on a mission to spread the gospel of love. Her ministry, All You Need Is Love, is located in a small west Texas town, but has made a huge impact on the community. Keeping with the theme of Christian love, Jill has completed her first non- fiction novel, 'All You Need Is Love,' which she is in the process of submitting. Her blog by the same name is a rich, informative read. 

Teacher of English and Computer Studies by day, wife and mother by night and author whenever she can steal some time, Elise is the proud author of Phase ShiftThe Mummy Wore Combat Boots, andThrowaway Child, available on Amazon and KoboBooks. She pens a blog about literature, popular culture and the human condition whenever the muse moves her.
Elise's fourth book, a young adult paranormal thriller entitled The Revenant is now available for pre-ordering on the Black Rose Writingpage!

Saturday, June 28, 2014

I Beat Pete: Sporting Clays Challenge

This is totally unrelated to writing, but I want to share it anyways. Sporting Clays is a hobby my husband introduced me to, and even though writing is my first love, I have to admit shooting can be addictive, especially when one starts to get good at it. We own a sporting clays range and the local news featured us on a segment. Enjoy!

I Beat Pete: Sporting Clays Challenge