December 5, 2009


I sat down with a mug of hot cocoa yesterday and worked on some of the final edits for Witch Wolf. I was sitting there, typing away, when I heard that horrible noise that felines will give when they're about to upchuck. A second later, something shot across the room and landed with a meaty slap.

The cat jumped down off of the bed as soon as I turned to look. I turned, only to discover what looked like a war zone of kitty vomit.

My girlfriend keeps a travel pillow up on the bed. You know, one of those little pillows people get when taking a long flight. The cat had vomited all over it. I went around the bed to check the floor. Sure enough, she had projectile vomited. I couldn't help it, for a moment I just stood there and thought Dear Gods, that’s a lot of freaking cat puke.

But, oh, how it got worse. I returned to the room armed with paper towels and carpet cleaner. The cat upchucked again, this time, by my bookcase. I had to stop editing as I tried to figure out the best way to clean my girlfriend’s pillow (which was soaked). In the end, I decided the most effective way of cleaning it was by checking the tag and washing it. Yet, once I removed the pillow from the bed, I realized that the cat had not only puked on that, but on the blanket as well. I pulled the blanket back and frowned, hard. I pulled the sheet back and frowned even harder. Kitty puke had soaked through the blanket, to the sheet, and to the fitted sheet below.

I looked at the cat in question, who was huddling in the corner of the room by the bookcase, trying to be unobtrusive. “Seriously?” I asked.

She sank down lower, as if in apology, but her ears flattened warily. I wasn't mad at her. How could I be for something that she couldn't help? One moment she'd been sleeping quietly beside me and the next... well, you know.

I had to strip the bed and remove all of the contaminated material. I threw another blanket down while the others were being washed. A safety blanket, in case one of the cats decided to they had to puke. Of course, once the safety blanket went down - no one had to puke. Go figure.

I still got quite a bit of work done on the edits. I didn't tackle the one big scene I wanted to get my hands on and work with, but still, work was accomplished. The work yesterday wasn't steady. There were too many interruptions for that. Nonetheless, I managed to work around those interruptions and that’s something.

Hopefully, the interruptions today will be at a minimum and I'll be able to tackle that one big scene.



December 1, 2009


I meant to update sooner, honest.

I just woke up not too long ago. I’m armed with coffee - so that’s okay. I couldn’t say what woke me, especially this early in the morning. Ever had one of those mornings where no matter how much or how little sleep you’ve gotten you open your eyes and your mind is completely awake?

Ye-eah, that pretty much sums it up. Usually, I try to go back to sleep, but my mind was already too awake compared to the rest of my body.

Thus, I slipped out of bed to make coffee and let my girlfriend get some decent sleep. She hasn’t been feeling well lately. One of the things we discovered when I was working on Witch Wolf was that, when I crawled out of bed to begin working on the book in the bright hours of the morning, she was able to fall into a deeper sleep. Why a deeper sleep? When the sun comes up I have a tendency to get active in my sleep. You know, knees, elbows, and flinging my hand across someone’s face. Once I’m vertical, she doesn’t have to worry about that...or my elbows. If I wake up and there’s a pillow shoved like a barrier between our pillows – I know I’ve been active and that she’s been sleeping with one eye open. Fortunately, we’ve found that the pillow barrier generally works.

Of course, I don’t remember any of the kneeing, elbow jabbing, or hand flinging when I wake up. She has to tell me about these things when we get up in the morning. Though, by far, the strangest thing I’ve done was bite her. Yep, bite. You read that right.

When I woke up the next morning and sat down with my coffee she asked, “Do you remember biting me last night?”

I blinked, trying to comprehend. “I did what last night?”

“You bit me. You don’t remember that?”

“No,” I said, “I don’t.”

At first, I thought she was joking. She explained in detail that I had snuggled into her, growled softly, nuzzled my face into the bend of her neck, and sank my teeth in. At first, she thought I had been awake when I’d done it, but when I fell back as quickly as I had bitten her, she realized that I was very much asleep.

It’s a little creepy, in an amusing sort of way.

So, not only does she have to worry about my knees, elbows, and hands – She has to worry that my subconscious might turn vampiric and go for the carotid.

Hmm, maybe there’s a reason I write preternatural fiction so well.

Witch Wolf is scheduled to be released in June next year in both print and ebook. On that front, here’s a little surprise.


October 11, 2009


I picked up the second book today and started working on the edits. I just couldn’t help myself. I’ve got the time to work on it and I need to get it done. I started working on the edits around two o’clock this afternoon and wrapped things up at about eleven this evening. I left myself a note so that I can pick up where I left off tomorrow.

I’m honestly surprised I can still type. I love the feeling that I get when I’ve worked my brain so much that a little part of it is going, “I hate you, you bitch.”

I enjoy editing. It feels good to work on something and to see the finished product. It also helps keep the book fresh in my mind. It’s not easy work, but it’s certainly rewarding to me.

Everyone makes mistakes. That is why it’s crucial to edit. I generally do not edit while I’m writing the book. That’s flow time. I’m not going to stop to edit and stifle the flow unless I’m on top of the mistake. If I’m done for the day and I’m looking for more work to do, then I’ll go over the work I’ve already done and clean it up, but my major edits don’t happen until the book is done.

When the book is done I do a read-through. I sit down with the manuscript and a box of colored pencils (or at the computer with a notepad nearby), and I go through and make notes while editing.

Today, I sat at the computer for about nine hours cutting, rewriting, checking consistency, and correcting mistakes. I’m not done with the edits yet, but I am so done for the night. It’s time to go spend some time with my sweetie and unwind.


October 6, 2009

Preternatural Fiction.

I started writing at a very young age and I’ve always been intrigued by the paranormal. I remember when I was five years old and the neighbors across the street moved out of their house. I was convinced that when people moved out of their houses they left a ghost behind (don’t ask me why).

What did I do?

I sneaked over to the house to investigate, peeking through windows, trying to look under the door. Trust me, I’m fully aware of how strange that sounds, but I was seriously convinced that I was going to see my first ghost. I’m pretty sure I didn’t see a ghost. No, what I saw was most likely a shadow. The shadow was enough. My entire tough, “I’m going to see my first ghost,” attitude fell away and I was suddenly a child again, a child that freaked herself the Hel out and ran home to mummy.

One thing I retained into my adulthood has been my imagination. Fortunately, I’ve learned not to turn it against myself. There’s a fine line between reality and fiction, but let’s face it - fiction is just so damn fun. It’s especially fun when you’ve got a gun carrying female protagonist that happens to be, not only a preternatural private investigator and a practicing witch, but a lycanthrope trying to keep her “disease” under wraps.

In Kass’s world, life is just a little different.

Ever looked at your colleague and thought that she/he looked like a bacon cheeseburger? Ever tried to keep that hungry look out of your eyes? Well, Kassandra has. It’s fun being in a character’s head when she’s kneeling beside a body thinking, “Dear Gods, please don’t let my stomach growl,” while surrounded by a bunch of blue uniforms.

I write what interests me. I write what I’m passionate about and what I’d like to read. I’ve always adored stories with a strong female protagonist that knows how to hold her own and how to handle a weapon.

The idea for Kassandra’s story came to me years ago. I wasn’t ready to write the book then and her image wasn’t clear in my mind. A year or two later, when she finally came to me and I could see her clearly – I got sucked into her world.

I’ve had people ask me, “Why do you write lesbian fiction when you could make it onto the New York Times Bestseller list by writing hetero-fiction?”

In the words of Kate Clinton, “Let’s get one thing straight . . . I’m not.”

I think that if you’re a writer and you’re writing something that you’re not passionate about – you’re wasting words. You should write what you’re passionate about, what you feel strongly about. If you’re not passionate about what you’re writing, how can you expect your readers to be? If you can’t feel it, how are your readers going to? Chances are they won’t.

Another suggestion I’ve received was, “Why not just leave sexuality out in general?”

To which, all I have to say is this:

Where’s the fun in that? If, by chance, somewhere down the road I’m inspired to write a story with zero element of sexuality (which is highly unlikely), then I’ll do it. As it is, that’s just not the type of writer I am.

Why should someone stifle who they are for someone else’s sense of satisfaction? What good does it do any of us to pretend to be something or someone we’re not? It doesn’t. It does so much more harm than good in most cases. It especially causes harm to the self.

Yes, in life there are times when it is wise to remain silent and times when it is wise to speak out and stand up for yourself and who you are. I am not saying stand up and fight fire with fire – I’m a firm believer that fighting fire with fire is one sure way to burn down a house.

What I am saying is this – don’t be afraid to be who you are, don’t be afraid to follow your dreams, and never give another person the power to trample over them.

Follow your inspiration and let the muse be your guide.

Brightest Blessings,

October 3, 2009

Novel Announcement.

I'll have to write an "actual," blog later. (I know, bad writer - no cookie). I am, however, very pleased to announce that Bold Strokes Books will be publishing the first novel in my preternatural series. If you dig preternatural mysteries, detective work, vampires, werewolves, and the lot...Check it out!

From the Bold Strokes Books website:

Coming Soon...

Witch Wolf (2010)

Preternatural Private Investigator and Paranormal Huntress Kassandra Lyall is used to working alone. Whenever there’s a murder or a mystery to solve that involves the preternatural—she’s the witch they call. When she’s called in to help the local cops work on a mysterious murder case, she finds herself needing all the help she can get.

A bloodthirsty werewolf is loose in the city and on a killing spree.

As if her plate weren’t full enough, a strange she-wolf seeks Kassandra’s aid, asking her to help find her missing brother. Kassandra soon learns that the strange she-wolf serves two masters, and one of those masters has taken quite an interest in her.

In a world where vampires have charmed their way into modern society, where werewolves walk the streets with their beasts disguised by human skin, Kassandra Lyall has a secret of her own to protect.

She’s one of them.

The First Book in the Kassandra Lyall Preternatural Investigator Series

Brightest Blessings,