After an almost two-year “hiatus,” I’ve finally returned to work on a full-length fiction project. It’s the sequel to my debut novel ("Surrender to Sanctuary"), currently titled “Sanctuary’s Promise.” Before starting, I read through what I’d written and realized one reason why I’d stopped: I’d written myself into the weeds with a plot so convoluted, I couldn’t have hacked my way out with a machete!
To the rescue was my CP (a/k/a hubby). In my family we call him the “Plot Master” because he has this annoying ability to guess the plot of almost every movie and TV show (including twists and turns) within minutes. He spent about a month reading my draft and taking notes and giving me silent “What were you thinking?” head shakes. When he was done, he had filled a one-inch binder with notes and suggestions.
When I hefted the binder in my hands, my first instinct was to run back to my non-writing cave and lose myself in Facebook, but then I put on my big girl undies and went to work. After reading through his notes twice, I realized how right he was about much of it. Still, I didn’t agree with everything he suggested. In fact, our initial conversation went something like this:
Me: (Tosses binder on the couch and heads to the kitchen for a bracing cup of English breakfast tea.)
Him: (Shouting at my back) “I guess you don’t like my suggestions?”
Me: (Back in the living room) “I am NOT writing another how-to novel on erotic lifestyles! The sequel isn’t about that. It’s about the murder of (secret plot point) and the discovery of (another secret plot point)!"
Him: (Throws up hands) “Okay, fine. But what about the rest? You have the characters ALL WRONG.”
Me: “How the heck (word changed to protect this blog’s PG rating) would you know? They’re MY characters!”
Him: “You’re right, Leah. It’s your book. Do what you want.” (Turns his attention to his tablet for another game of solitaire.)
After several moments of self-reflection during which I felt like an a** because he had put a lot of thought into his suggestions and much of his critiques were spot on (and yes, I know how lucky I am that my husband cares so much and can share in my process!), I convinced him to sit with me to review and discuss in depth. We spent the afternoon brainstorming (he actually liked some of my new ideas!), and now I have a pared-down, streamlined plot that has me enthused about the story and about writing again.
Since then I can’t say I’ve been burning up the page count stats, but I am writing again, and I am enjoying the process. I’m looking forward to sharing my progress in the weeks/months ahead!
For now, I’ve dropped the price on that first book, and my second , to 99 cents through the month of September. They’re available only on Kindle and are included in the Kindle Unlimited program so subscribers can read for free.
SURRENDER TO SANCTUARY
Romantic Suspense / Adult (Erotic Theme)
FBI agents Anna Parker and David Owens go undercover into a world of domination and submission to solve a murder at the Jersey Shore. Read more, including the story behind the story and an excerpt here.
Paranormal Romantic Suspense Novella
Finalist, 2012 International Digital Awards (short paranormal category)
When the body of an FBI recruit is discovered in the basement of FBI Headquarters, agent Jackson Yates teams up with paranormal psychologist Rachael Sullivan to find her killer. The ghost tags along to help. :-) More here.
Leah writes stories of crime and passion, mystery and suspense, and most of all love. She loves to chat with readers on Facebook and occasionally posts things on Pinterest (like recipes that look good that she’ll probably never make).