One day, Sam will move to the beach…

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School’s Out Forever…

This author is finally, finally finished with her bachelor’s degree.

Yes, I’m much closer to 40 than 22. It’s late for anyone to be graduating college, and sometimes I feel incredibly self-conscious about the fact that both my AA and my bachelor’s were earned after the age of 30.  But you know what? I did it.

I went back to college in my late 20s, and finally, over many years working half time and sometimes even less, I finished school. I won’t be applying to any MFA programs, and I certainly don’t want a doctorate in English, so this is it for me.

I’d say this is dedicated to the stepfather who told me I’d never make anything of myself, but it’s not. It’s dedicated to Mr. Burns, who has supported me through everything, despite his misgivings about the insane cost of college today. In the end, he knew it was something I had to do for myself. And you know what? It’s totally dedicated to me. You finally did it, nerd.

Experience is simply the name we give our mistakes.

-Oscar Wilde

The Week Where Everything Happens

This week, everything’s coming in for Sins of the Father!

The lovely and incredibly talented Natasha Snow and I have been talking about the cover, which is going to be gorgeous. Mailing list members will get the first peek at the finished cover when I get my hot little hands on it, and I hope you love it as much as I do!

Just as importantly, my fabulous editor from Clause & Effect has returned the manuscript with edits to be done! Now I may be one of a very few authors who love doing edits, but I really, really do. I’ve found the right editor, who never makes me feel bad about my work, and who is also totally willing to tell me when something has to be changed.

I feel so lucky, to be working with two of the most talented people I know, who are helping me give Keegan the best book I possibly can.

Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned.

-Buddha

Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.

-Mark Twain

My Destiny… of Dragons

I can honestly say I’ve never done this before. Not when the long-awaited finale to Robert Jordan’s ponderous Wheel of Time series finally released. Not when the last Harry Potter book came out. Not even when they released Serenity to give us Firefly fans some closure.

But here I am right now, re-listening to Michael Lesley‘s utterly perfect narration of The Lightning-Struck Heart by T.J. Klune, in preparation for the release of the sequel, A Destiny of Dragons, on the 30th.

Three days. Yay!

No act of kindness, however small, is ever wasted.

-Aesop

Wilde Love Update

For anyone who’s interested, Wilde Love book two, Sins of the Father, has been sent off for editing. This means that I get to spend the next few weeks doing one of two things: emailing my editor every two minutes to ask what she thinks (Sorry Maddie, I’ll do my best not to!), or hiding in a closet and hoping for the best.

Okay, fine, there are other options. I’ve got plenty to do in my ‘day job’ for the next few weeks, which will keep me occupied. Also, I have three homework assignments left to do before I’m finished with college forever. And then believe me, there will be cheesecake.

Funnily enough, all I want to do is start book three. Strike up the Band, y’all. Jake’s story is coming.

Life’s Too Short For Bad Books

When I was sixteen, I prided myself on finishing every single book I picked up to read. It didn’t matter how bad it was, or how much I hated it, if I started it, I was going to finish it. That melodramatic Victor Hugo epic Les Miserables? Every. Last. Word.

In my twenties, a few started slipping through the cracks. I blame it on schoolbooks. There was no way I was going to read the C++ manual front to back. I might have died of boredom.

My twenties saw me finally abandon some fiction, too. The first I remember was Twilight. I tried, you guys, I really did. I got all the way to the last one. Then there was that whole pedophilia thing, and I just… couldn’t. I ran screaming in the opposite direction and never finished the book. That particular hardcover is the single book in my house that gets no respect whatsoever. Which is to say that we use it as a doorstop.

In my thirties, there have been things like the abusive BDSM series that everyone knows. I think that one was my breaking point.

That was when I realized that when I finished a bad book, I didn’t feel accomplished. I felt annoyed, or ripped-off, or outright angry. And it wasn’t like I didn’t see it coming. I can usually tell in the first few chapters whether a book is going to work for me or not. So why am I wasting my precious reading time on things I hate? So that I can be angry and go leave nasty reviews on the work of authors who spent time and effort on those works I hate? I hope not. That’s not the me I want to be.

tl;dr: I have embraced the DNF. Life’s too short for bad fiction. If I decide at any point that the book is going to get a bad review from me, I’m putting it down.

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