November Spotlight & Other News

Update: Spotlight

I’m a bit late on the spotlight update, sorry! But updating with the World Series on in the background (my Phillies are giving me anxiety and I need some distractions). I’ve got some spotlight updates and some general writing updates for you.

Finishing October Spotlight

Novel: The Witness (Set in 2006, Written in 2006-07)

I chose The Witness as my first spotlight story for a few reasons. One, it’s shorter than a lot of my other stories so it fits nicely to begin mid-month; two, it’s just a fun story. It was my first foray into playing with the Cassadine/Spencer feud, and it has a lot of ensemble characters. If I were writing this story today, it’d probably be twice as long with a more definitive ending, but I just had so much fun writing and returning to this story.

  • October 14: PrologueChapter 5: The premise for this story was a challenge at The Canvas where writers received a title and had to write a story around that. I didn’t plan any piece of The Witness, so the fact that I ended up actually making this worked is an accident. I honestly couldn’t tell you why I decided to go with this idea. Honestly, the final line in the prologue might be one of my favorite cliff hangers.
  • October 21: Chapter 6 Chapter 10: These are the chapters where I definitely leaned into plot twist after plot twist. Paternity secrets, shootings, back from the dead, blood feuds. I was having so much fun with this story, which I hope it shows off. I would never ever write this story like this today, but it still holds up pretty well. My favorite line is definitely the last one of Chapter 10 — it’s a one-liner I shamelessly stole from a 1998 episode.
  • October 28: Chapter 11Epilogue: It’s been a very long time since I wrote this story, but I know that I wrote a bunch of chapters in a rush towards the end of May and in June of 2006, but I don’t think I finished it that summer.  I look back at these closing chapters and it definitely tells you the kind of writer I was when I was 22/23. I rushed the ending and closed out some storylines, particularly the Elizabeth part of the story. I was satisfied at the time with it, but I do regret the ultimate lack of Liason. I think I had anticipated Lucky’s role remaining the same as I hinted in the beginning, but I wrote myself to a different ending and there just wasn’t room anymore. Still, this story was an absolute joy ride to write and revisit. I pantsed every minute of it and never knew how I was ending every chapter.

November Spotlight

Short Story: Death By Candlelight (Set & Written: 2019)

The second in the trio of stories I’ve written for the #GHWhoDunit Mystery series at the Liason Haven, this has a special place in my heart. I drew on the thousands of romance novels I’ve read over the last two decades and used some old London neighborhoods where I lived and studied in 2013-14 to write a story about Jason and Elizabeth in Jack the Ripper’s London, trying to navigate society and mysterious murders and séances.

Novel: Bittersweet (Set 2002; Written 2016-18)

I chose Bittersweet for November for a few reasons. One, I honestly love it, and I’m really proud of how it turned out. I discovered a lot about my writing process while working on it. Bittersweet was also the final project that Cora and I worked on together. Cora was my beta reader for this novel as well as The Best Thing, and a lot of the story beats and themes were improved upon due to her guidance. I also have a sequel in the works for Bittersweet that I nearly chose this time around, and I thought it might be fun to reacquaint you all with the first story.

  • November 3: Chapter 1Chapter 7: I wrote several different openings for Bittersweet, really struggling with the tone I wanted to set for the Jason/Elizabeth relationship. I’ve posted all the novel’s deleted and unused material on the Workshop. I very much wanted to establish the universe and the characters in this first section of the story, particularly the friendship between Elizabeth, Gia, and Courtney. I also spent a lot of time filling out the mob storyline, figuring out how to make that storyline pop. I love the early Zander material with Nico and Lenny. Some of my favorite mob stuff. I’m most proud of my Jason/AJ scenes and forcing them both to look at each other in a new light.

General Writing News

I’ll start by, as always, thanking everyone for their patience as I got through a nasty case of strep throat after working through a lingering head cold. I’m all caught up at work, and was able to take my laptop with me the last few days to grab about a half hour of work in the morning and writing during lunch. I’m using that time to edit Counting Stars.

In the last three days, I’ve edited six chapters of Counting Stars, which cut the remaining chapters in half. There are two more that require new scenes (three scenes in total), and then I have to write two brand-new ending chapters as well as an epilogue. The plan is to complete all of those by Sunday or Monday at the latest.

NaNoWriMo kicked off on Tuesday, November 1, and I decided to use it to get myself back on track. I’ve written around 6700 words for Kismet, completing the Prologue and most of Chapter 1. I took off today to get those Counting Stars chapters done (and I’m just exhausted from three straight World Series games keeping me up util midnight when I’m up at 5 AM in the morning).

I’m going to be attempting to post those Kismet chapters for the Crimson Stalker as I write them — so the Prologue is already up, as are Counting Stars, Chapters 27-32. I did the monthly update for Crimson Obsessed, so that tier has Chapters 1-26, and will get the last chunk when I complete it next week.

Flash Fiction should get back on its regular schedule this weekend and next. Thanks again, and see you on Sunday for a new part of Watch Me Burn.


No comments yet