Shared WIP Tag - Snippets

Wow. Just wow. November is over. Or just about. 

But thanks to everyone for taking part in the tag. I hope you enjoyed it. And I hope readers enjoyed it as well!

Line you’re most likely to cut in revisions?

The table was silent.
(Just don't ask. This one's from the first day. I was panicking. I also apparently forgot how to write.)

(In my defense, I've been editing most of the year. The last time I wrote an actual first draft was...NaNo 2018ish?)

Line you’re most proud of?

"I stopped doing it because it's wrong."

Line that made you cry while you were writing it?

"Then I shouldn't leave him," Ravin whispered.

Piece of dialogue that made you laugh out loud, shiver or flail?

"I'm off to find Jay."

(This just...made me cry and shiver and just ahhhhh it was the beginning to an epic conclusion that I've had planned out for years and typing that really hut hard because it's been years and I'm finally writing it.)

Line that made you stop writing for a minute so you could process it?

The (blank) (blank) was (blank).

(Sorry, spoilers. But I typed that sentence and just stared at it and wanted to cry and laugh and ended up just staring some more.)

Favorite snippet that describes a place or character?

The night after the sea monster, Adi couldn’t sleep. The ship tossed back and forth, rocking the hammock so rest was impossible. After what felt like hours, she gave up and stumbled her way above deck. The ocean was flat and so calm it was like sitting on a sheet of glass. Every single star glittered on the mirror of water, and Adi almost expected to look over the railing and see down to the bottom of the ocean. Instead, her own reflection looked back at her, circled with a crown of stars.

Line you can hardly believe you wrote (whether that's positive or negative is up to you)?

"No, but it’ll dry out all the moisture from your mouth, and leave a weird taste in your teeth."

A snippet where even you aren’t entirely sure what’s happening.

The only animals they found were flocks of large, flightless birds that at first seemed unafraid of the newcomers. Only when Josiah was almost in the middle of them did they notice they had a visitor—and responded by screeching and diving for him. Josiah screamed and fled the little clearing where the birds had been sunbathing. They chased him into the woods, only leaving him alone with the rest of the crew charged the birds in turn.

(Where did these birds come from? Why didn't they like Josiah? Why did the rest of the crew scare the birds if the birds are so intent on chasing people?)

Weird thing you had to Google mid-writing-session.

where do you make the hole to release pressure in lungs

(Please don't ask.)

Beginning sentence and ending sentence (if possible without spoilers).

Beginning sentence: Two people have died.
Ending: "I've got to set up my cabin."

Thanks again for reading, and hope to keep y'all updated on Ships, Secrets, and Survivors. It's going to be a great book!

Don't forget to check out the other participants: Ceci, Sarah, Lila, Snaps, Lily Cat, and Nicki. (Not all of them have posted yet.)

Know the Novel - Ships, Secrets, and Survivors Part 2

Well, November is coming to an end and I suppose I'd better get this post finished and published...

How’s the writing going overall?

Pretty good. I finished November 21st, which is a little late for me, but I did end up taking a trip to IN the first full week of Nov., and basically wrote nothing but like, 4 or 5 days. And then I struggled to get into the characters heads for a long time.

Apparently the last time I drafted something was last NaNo??? And I've been editing all year? So it was really hard to get back into the drafting headspace. I finally "got into" it about 30K in...

What’s been the most fun aspect about writing this novel so far?

Getting to explore the characters and write the ships (literal ships, not the romances). :)

What do you think of your characters at this point? Who’s your favorite to write about?

I'm pretty happy with how they've turned out. Ravin is still my favorite, but Adi has come very close to my heart. She's got a neat way of viewing the world and she's braver and more determined then I am, which is cool.

Has your novel surprised you in any way?

Um, yes. Because Sarah and I had already written about 30K, I was sure that the draft would end before I reached 50K for NaNo, and I would have to write some flash fiction or something to get my word count up.

But, wonder of wonders, I hit 50K and still had story left!

Have you come across any problem areas?

Well, there are a lot of characters, and I think we'll either have to pick up some loose ends in editing, or else cut a few folks. And I changed a few things (arcs, personalities) halfway through, but those are simple edits, y'know? No huge plot points to change or anything.

What’s been your biggest victory with writing this novel at this point?

Getting into the groove around 35K and realizing that the draft was going to be more than 50K.

If you were transported into your novel and became any one of the characters, which one do you think you’d be? Would you take any different actions than they have?

I'd like to be Heather. She's all calm and steady and keeps the crew in line and cooks amazing meals and doesn't take crap from anyone.

Give us the first sentence or paragraph then 2 (or 3!) more favorite snippets!

Beginning sentence of the NaNo draft (not where the actual book begins):
Two people have died.

(Like, what a fun way to begin!!)

The officials looked at Ravin’s—or rather, Justin’s—papers, squinting and flipping the paper over. “We can’t read this,” they said at last.
“Sorry. We sail, uh…here two days of Andolin. I speak a little your tongue. I help you talk.” She pointed at Ravin, as if offering to be a translator.
Adi did her best to look Andolin (whatever that would be like), and tried to pretend she couldn’t understand a word that was said.
“Ah, just leave them.” The younger man tossed the paper back. “I can’t stand sailors.”
“Good day at you,” Ash quipped, offering a kind of salute, and then hurried away, giving Adi and Ravin a pointed look to stay close. Ravin rambled on in Andolese, and Adi laughed, praying that no one actually understood what was being said. Ash interrupted Ravin, pointing at a funny looking house, and the two engaged in some sort of conversation for a few more minutes until the officers were out of sight.
“Ravin, what on earth?” Ash spat, the moment they felt safe. “I think I need to cut off my ears or something.”
“Sorry,” he blushed.
“The only Andolese you know is one of the most grammatically incorrect and crude poems ever written by that half-mad Andolese poet Sachrin? Is that really all you know?”
“I used to speak it, barely. But I wanted to speak naturally, without pausing to figure out what to say next. So I just rattled off something I’d memorized.”
“Of all the beautiful Andolese poems, you chose to rattle off Ode to a Rusty Scythe?”
“I was a kid. And I thought it was funny. At the time, of course.”
“Who even let their kid read Sachrin? Let alone memorize him…”


“We need to keep the fire going at all times.” Justin sat cross-legged in front of his handiwork. “And make sure it doesn’t burn down the island.”
“That happens in all the stories. The survivors get angry at each other and burn the island and kill each other.” Hawthorn poked a branch into the fire. “They could get rescued if they just worked together, but they just fight.”
“If we ever starting picking people off, I know who’d be one of the first ones to go.” Shade glanced at Hawthorn, his eyes narrowed.
“What? I’ve been helping! When I was younger, I used to imagine what it would be like to get trapped on a deserted island. I made all these plans for what I would do if it ever happened, but I never got to go sailing until now. And look! Stuck on an island on my first time! This is great!”
“Is it too early to start the whole ‘getting angry and killing each other off’ thing?”
Justin turned to Heather in despair. “We’re never getting off this island.”


There are some awesome snippets I would love to share, but can't because of SPOILERS. :)

Share an interesting tidbit about the writing process so far!

A friend surprised me by making a mock cover for my book!!

I also wrote while watching the first Pirates of the Caribbean movie, which is what inspired the pirate hunters, so many years ago.

Take us on a tour of what a normal writing day for this novel looks like. Where do you write? What time of day? Alone or with others? Is a lot of coffee (or some other drink) consumed? Do you light candles? Play music? Get distracted by social media (*cough, cough*)? Tell all!

Usually I write right before bed. Dinner is cleaned up, the animals have all been fed and bedded down for the night, and I've changed into my PJs. I curl up on the bed with pillows and blankets and write for an hour before heading to bed. Occasionally I'll make some tea. Lately I've been listening to Riverdance and the local horse auction live cam while writing, or else not listening to anything. The last few days I also wrote during lunch break at work, just because I was sick and tired of taking so long.

But there you have it. NaNo2019.

Shared WIP Tag - Side Characters

Whew! Hard to believe we're almost done with November and NaNo!

If you had to go on a mission with any of your SCs, which one(s) would you pick?

Um...probably Ash. She's got street smarts and is pretty tough, but can also be very kind. Or maybe Jay Hill himself. Or Shade. Most of the side crew can be pretty useful in a fight, tbh.

Which of your side characters attempts to steal attention from the MC the most? 

Um, Jay Hill. Because technically it's his story--we just happen to be telling it from the POVs of Ravin and Adi. For some reason.

Which SC would annoy you the most and which one would you bond with the most?

I think Heather and maybe Justin and I could all get along. We're all pretty chill people. Not sure if Arrow would enjoy spending time with me. But he's just a kid, y'know? He'd rather be with all the cool people.

Which SC would you be most attracted to, romantically or platonically?

(Who suggested this question, and why was it approved??)

(Can I not answer this? My mom reads my blog.)

(And my siblings.)

(I'd like to not face them after answering this question.)

I'll just say that I could possibly get along with a lot of the side characters, as they're decent folks and I'm a fairly friendly gal.

Would you fit in with your SCs collectively, or would they not be your type of friend group?

I think if I was able to prove myself as a capable person, they'd accept me right in to their little group. I'm not sure how useful archery would be at sea, but I'm sure there's some use for it, and seeing as how precious few of them are skilled archers, there might be a spot for me.

If your SCs are not all friends, what would result if you were to thrust them together as a group and assign them an activity?

Um...this is what the entire book is about.

Which SC would fit into our world the most?

Justin. He's so chill.

Which SC makes you laugh the most?

Probably Josiah. Granted, the scene where Hawthorne faints at seeing an assassin standing in front of him always makes me laugh. And Justin's real name "Justin Case" always gets me smiling.

Which SC could probably get removed without affecting much of the story?

Um, Liz. She's already been kicked out. Hawthorne might be the next to go? And honestly, Justin has very little to do except standing around looking cool and making us laugh with his name. And maybe Heather?

Which SC could never get removed because of how important their role is?

Jay Hill. Arrow. Ash. Josiah. These guys (and gal) are THE BEST.

Almost done, y'all. To everyone still pushing through NaNo: YOU GOT THIS!!

Shared WIP Tag - Main Character(s) and Antagonist

Welcome to the third part of the Shared WIP Tag.

Now. I could make this easy and just answer the questions about my MC, but I'm also going to answer these for Sarah's MC, because I'll have to write both for NaNo. So this'll be fun...

Meet Ravin, my sailor on the Red Wind
Adi, a Princess who wants a different life
and Captain Rev Martin, a pirate

Would you be friends with your MC? Why or why not?

Um...I'm not sure. I'd probably be a little intimidated by Ravin, tbh. But eventually I'd figure out he's not that bad of a guy. We'd enjoy playing music and he wouldn't have to talk but if he did, I'd sit and listen.

Adi would probably be a little unsure with me, then she'd realize that I'm not that bad and soon we'd be chatting...

What would an ordinary day look like in the shoes of your MC?

Ravin would get up, do sailor stuff, mill around on deck, maybe fight off some sea monsters or play the violin. Attack some pirates. Go fishing. A quiet life.

Adi? Hmm...get up, pretend to be the best royal princess ever while wanting a totally different life...

You’re walking down the sidewalk when the villain approaches you and tells you he needs your help. What do you do?

Run. Very far away. Run to Captain Jay Hill for HELP.

What would be your first impression of your MC upon meeting them?

Um, I'd steer cleer away from Ravin. Scowly, creepy sailor. And I'd probably avoid Adi, too. Either when she's in Princess attire or when she's in I'm-gonna-win-the-Scaera-Dumeda attire.

What would be your first impression of your villain upon meeting them?

That's he's obviously a PIRATE and should be AVOIDED AT ALL COSTS

What would happen if you were stuck in an elevator with your villain for five (or worse, ten) minutes? would not be pretty. Basically, I would start jumping up and down in the elevator until it started shaking and he's be freaking out and yelling "stop!" and I'd be laughing and it would be a long 5-10 minutes...

What makes your MC most like you and least like you?

Um...this is personal. *laughs*

Ravin and I both play the fiddle (though he plays waaaaaaay better then me). But he likes the ocean and water and I don't...

Adi and I both care for people, but I think she's way better at being a leader.

What song or selection of words best describes your villain?

Oy. I dunno. Pirates of the Carribean theme song? I'll just go with that. I've never really liked giving characters their own songs and whatnot.

If your MC was teleported to your front porch, what would be their reaction (and what would be yours)?

*draws knife* AHHHHHHHHH

Reaction would be mutual.

If the antagonist had a dream come true, what would it be? (no spoilers!)

Um, he'd be the most feared pirate on the seas and totally invincible.

Anyways, see y'all later!

The Story Hunter Cover Reveal

I'm going to make you wait to see the cover, because I want to tell you a story.

I'd heard a lot about The Story Peddler, and one day, when I noticed it was on sale, I bought the ebook.

And I didn't read it. The ebook when to the bottom of my ever-growing TBR and got forgotten.

Then I went to Realm Makers. And that book basically took out the entire competition and grabbed every possible award (okay, I might be exaggerating a little) and so I thought, Okay, this book is apparently really good. I'll buy a physical copy and get it signed while I'm here and maybe I'll get around to reading it.

Well, I did get around to reading it, and, long story short, I FELL IN LOVE.

As soon as I finished it, I just had to buy The Story Raider, and yeah that was AMAZING TOO.

Then, shortly after that, Lindsay posts about looking for more members for her Corsair Crew, and I was like say no more, where do I sign up.

And now. Here I am today with the cover for the third book, The Story Hunter, and WOW am I excited and seriously, if you haven't read these books yet, WHAT ARE YOU DOING WITH YOUR LIFE???

And okay, you can look at the cover now.

Wow. Just, wow. Isn't it beautiful???  


Redeeming the past is a fatal quest.

In the wake of a deadly coup, the capital city of Urian has descended into chaos. Heartbreak and bloodshed await Tanwen and her friends as they discover the unlikeliest leader now rules Tir.
If they want to save the realm, Tannie and the Corsyth weavers must rescue Queen Braith and unmask the Master, ending the strife once and for all. But the success of their hunt depends upon an ally no one trusts.
The Master has a new target in sight: fragile, trauma-scarred Digwyn, whose unique weaving ability could turn the tide of any war. When the desire for vengeance proves too powerful for Digwyn to resist, Tanwen must face a terrifying truth: the fate of Tir rests in the hands of a volatile, shattered girl.


Here's a SPOILER FREE blurb:

The capital city of Urian has descended into chaos. The Master has a new target in sight: fragile, trauma-scarred Digwyn, whose unique weaving ability could turn the tide of any war. When the desire for vengeance proves too powerful for Digwyn to resist, Tanwen must face a terrifying truth: the fate of Tir rests in the hands of a volatile, shattered girl.


So, are you totally sold yet??  Here are the links to preorders: 


Shared WIP Tag - Worldbuilding

Welcome to week two! Today we are going to be discussing the story world...which admittedly hasn't really been touched in this draft...

What aspect of this world would make you want to leave immediately?

The iron grip the King holds over the people? The possibility that I might be attacked by assassins or pirates? The dangerous animals lurking beneath the surafce of the ocean? Nah...I'd rather not be bothered.

If you lived in this world, what would be your job/working environment?

Um, something like my current job? Maybe helping a merchant keep his accounts or even helping work the tests for the Scaera Dumeda.

What would you most likely be wearing if you were dropped into this world? jeans, an active-wear t-shirt, maybe a sweatshirt since it's winter time. My ESD shoes if I got teleported from work; sneakers if at home.

What aspects stands out to you as different from our world? What is very similar to ours?

Well, there isn't much magic in the book, so it's kinda similar to our world in that way. Got normal people and all. But what really stands out is the Scaera Dumeda. A test to bring forth the most brilliant people in the land.

Which part of your world would you most enjoy visiting?

Okay, so I honestly almost said something like "I'd love to visit Australia" and then I realized the question meant my story world not my real world.


I'd really love to go sailing on the Red Wind with the crew. They're the best.

Which part of your world would you avoid at all costs?

Um...the ocean. Which presents a problem.

So I guess, to better answer the previous question, I'd love to pop on board the Red Wind while she's in harbor and maybe eat a meal, then head back to solid ground.

Would you enjoy the types of food or common dishes eaten in your world?

Ha. I'll eat anything. Seriously. Blood pudding. Haggis. Anything on a plate I'd attempts a taste. I may not want to finish it, but I'll at least try things.

Cuz I like food.

What does the culture of this world revolve around and would you enjoy participating in it?

Uhhhhh it revolves around....uhhhhhhh trade? It takes place in merchant towns and across seas so there's always something new to see. :)

What’s your favorite thing about the story world?

The ships. And not the kissy-kissy ones.

Provide a few pictures that help depict your story world.



*runs away*

(Okay, just imagine Pirates of the Caribbean meets The Avengers with some Assassins and Teddy-Bears thrown in. There. Kinda give you an idea?)

Shared WIP Tag - Introduction

Wow. November again. Which means that it's time for another round of the Shared WIP Tag!!!

If you have a book cover, torture your readers by making them scroll forever to see it. If you do not have a book cover, describe your dream cover.

Okay guys. Here goes.

So it would probably be a simple cover, maybe with a red background and the shapes of a ship and maybe the moon or some secret agent-y type shadows. Kind of see what I mean?

Provide a blurb

The Scaera Dumeda. A death wish. A chance for greatness. Those deemed the smartest and most cunning will be called to take part in a series of challenges. The winners will get to join the Shadow Squad and hold title as Guardians of Antovan.

Adima wants nothing more then to hear her name called and get the chance to prove herself to be more than a dull, boring Princess. When her name is announced on Selection Day, she throws away her title, despite her family's threats of disownment and the uncertain future ahead.

After all, nothing ever goes wrong in the Scaera Dumeda. It's a test, not a gladiator arena. Even the losers are still rewarded greatly. And Adi doesn't plan on loosing.

On the first day, Adi meets Ravin. Ravin is a sailor on the Red Wind (a ship known only in bedtime stories) and doesn't know why he was selected. Ever since a nearly fatal duel, he has been marked dead in the records. He never even took the entry test.

Treachery is afoot, and when other selectees are found dead during the first challenge, Adi and Ravin must discover the secrets of the Scaera Dumeda and put an end to it before anyone else is killed.

Share some aesthetics

Oy. Um...

How long did it take you to flesh out the story enough to feel prepared to use it for NaNo?

Well, Sarah and I have already written 30K or so of the beginning, so I feel like I have a good grip as to what needs to come next.

But I also love winging it, lol

Is it a standalone or part of a series?

A standalone. The way I've been figuring the ending, I suppose there might be a chance for future books. At the moment, we don't any others planed.

How did you get the idea for this story?

A couple years ago I watched the first Pirates of the Caribbean movie and loved the whole pirates and ships and high adventures (okay, I also adore the soundtrack). But of course pirates are bad, right? So what about someone who hunts pirates? 

Thus, Captain Jay Hill and his crew of the Red Wind were born.

Sarah and I eventually got around to writing a story together. Sarah loves the whole "fighting as a team" aspect, and I brought in my pirate hunters. Fun mix, yah?

What song or selection of lyrics best describes the general aesthetic of your story?

Erm, how about this one? 

What made you decide to write this book for NaNo?

I had nothing else, honestly. I mean, I did have two ideas that I could have fleshed out, but Sarah said I could go ahead and just finish this one off, which was super kind.

What are your publishing plans for this book?

We are still discussing this, honestly. At the moment, we are considering self-publishing and working with Evan to get illustrations for it.

Well, there you have it! The beginning of the Shared WIP Tag and some info about Ships, Secrets, and Survivors!

And don't forget to check out the other participants: Ceci, Sarah, Lila, Snaps, Lily Cat, and Nicki.