Cover Art

Revamp and Shit

I’ve had a bit of a revamp around here. I got bored with the white and decided to go with something more in keeping with the darker aspects of my work that I’ve been leaning toward lately. Sort of combining my “old” self (Charley Oweson) with the newer, m/m self (Sarah Masters). I love writing dark books, but it remains to be seen if the darker work will be taken as well as my other m/m. We’ll see.

The last two books of the Blinded series—Wildfire and Shimmer—are at the formatters, so they should be available soon. Scared is with two beta readers, so that novel will be sent to the publishers shortly. A single title, Grafton’s Point, in the Dreams & Desires anthology, the proceeds going to a battered women’s shelter, will also be available soon. As for WIPs…at the moment I have four books on the go. One for EC, one for who knows where, one co-authoring with Jaime Samms, and an m/m. You’d think with 4 to choose from I’d have the urge to write at least one of them, but I don’t. So, I might well start a new short today just so I keep up with my chapter a day regime that I’ve been sticking to for the past two weeks now. It’s working well, although some days the procrastination fairy does sit on my shoulder and prod me to do other things. Like she did this morning by making me re-do this site. Bless her…

I’m on a bit of a downer today, but ho hum, such is life, and I’m sure I’ll knock myself out of it in an hour or two. Sometimes life throws a curveball and makes me wonder what the fuck the point is with certain things, and I ask myself whether I need to take a new direction. Still, I’ll plod along as usual, see if anything changes—God, I’m always saying that!—and then if it doesn’t, I’ll think about making some changes of my own. Sometimes it’s like I’m beating a dead horse, know what I mean? I reckon it can apply to anything in life: When do you decide enough is enough? When do you say, “Right, that’s it! Fuck this for a game of soldiers!”

Yeah, it’s to do with writing, my career, whether all this hard work is worth the virtual paper it’s written on. But…that’s a story for another day. I think I’m just tired, may possibly need a break after hammering out Scared. Unfortunately, I never know when to quit until I burn out. So maybe I just need to either start a new book or go and do something else for a week or two. Avoid manuscripts like the plague. Um, yeah. That’s likely…

Whatever you’re doing today, I hope it’s a good one, and if you need to reflect, like me, I hope you come to the best solution for you. One that makes you happy. TTFN, loves!

 

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Weekly News

 

The latest on writing…

1. Loveyoudivine will be selling my series books as one book per series for those who like to have them all on one file.

       

2. Contradicting review came in. Some good points that I took on board, and will keep those in mind for future books, but it left me thinking: wtf? Amazing how other minds ‘see’ things so differently. One reader gets it, the other doesn’t. I’m thinking I need to write books that are ‘spelled’ out, but this makes me feel as though I think the reader is too dense to understand something the first time I wrote it, or that they don’t have the brains to work things out for themselves. I hate reading books like that, where the information is repeated several times, so why would I want to put others through it? At the same time, if there’s a demand for repeats… Sometimes I don’t know whether I’m coming or going.

3. No writing so far this week except for about 100 words on a new novel. I was fired up to write it, then someone made an innocent comment that zapped the light and I closed the document, leaving me doubting whether I could pull the book off.

4. Meant to be writing book 4 in the Blinded series. No chance at the moment. My mind isn’t where it’s meant to be for that series.

5. Having the kids home for summer break has stalled the writing too. They’ve been good, but me not getting any time alone hasn’t helped. I also have edits to do. Thank goodness I have 3 weeks to complete them, because my mind is elsewhere. I’ll start them Monday.

6. General bleurgh feeling toward my career at the moment. Had these feelings before and they pass, so I’ll sit here and wait for them to pass again. No enthusiasm.

 


Weekly News

My good friend Tess MacKall has some great news to share HERE. A few of my other friends have had the same news—M. King, Cindy Jacks, and Cora Zane—and I’m so bleedin’ pleased for them all I could burst. Having known these wonderful women for a few years now, I’ve watched them grow and strive for their places in the writing world, all of us aspiring to be where we aimed to be. To get there is a wonderful feeling, but when your friends get there too—wow, it’s such a brilliant range of emotions because you know how they feel. I cried when each of these women told me they’d achieved their dream, and I’m sure I’ll cry again when others email me to tell me their exciting news. It’s been a long road for all of us, but with perseverance and the will to succeed, we all got there. Whether it’s in a magazine, a print book, or with a publisher you’ve always aspired to join, I hope that when good news comes your way, you enjoy the feeling and congratulate yourself with a pat on the back.

Today I felt like one of the terrorists Jack Bauer seeks out in 24. Why? Because I stood in my living room with a can of Raid fly killer and liberally sprayed the room. Not that I’m obsessed with 24 or anything, but I immediately thought about the nerve gas in the current series we’re watching and wondered whether the poor flies were foaming at the mouth when they fell, pink goo and all. I doubt they were, and I wasn’t about to get out my microscope and study the little buggers. Around an hour after I sprayed, the little sods were back. Well, not the previous little sods, but new ones, zooming in from the garden to fly in circles beneath the ceiling light fixture. What’s that all about? Why do flies insist on doing that? Crazy shits.

Anyway, as usual, 24 is living up to the standards of previous seasons—complete with predictable plots and twists. But that doesn’t matter. Guessing what happens next is all part of the fun, and getting it right is even funnier. I will admit to a few things bugging me now, though.

1. Jack’s raspy whisper when he gives news no one else is allowed to hear.

2. Jack’s raspy shout when he gives news he wants every bugger to hear.

3. Most of the time, whenever a civilian helps Jack, they end up dead.

4. President Logan’s ear bobbing up and down every so often when he’s staring at someone. Very funny to begin with, though. So much so I got Hub to replay the amazing moving ear scene a few times while I laughed my ass off louder with each viewing. Um, yeah. I’m weird.

But, as this season comes to a close (Which one are we on, dear? Ah, 5 Hub says), I’m wondering whether all the loose ends are going to be tied up, because at the moment there are a few threads hanging. Like:

Where the hell did they put Tony’s body when he was accidentally injected? And more to the point, if Tony isn’t really dead—as indicated by one of Hub’s work mates—that’s even worse. No mention has been made of where the hell he is, silly little inch-wide beard and all.

Not long now before we start season 6. They have got better with each one, but I’m wondering if any season can beat this one. This has been my fave so far.

On the writing front, I’ve been penning a tale in my EC name, completing a novella that didn’t quite hit the spot for me. Deciding to make it erotic horror, I’ve been writing extra chapters, expanding the original idea so the book ends up as a more well-rounded novel. With my backlist in place now, I’m able to slow down on the EC work and take my time, writing longer books with more intricate plots. I have four books contracted with EC at the moment and another in the subs queue. I also have a revision on another I need to complete, so things are working very well at The Cave. I received a new book cover last week, perfect for the book, and the characters are just as I’d imagined. The cover artist, Dar Albert, is fabulously talented and I’m very pleased to have had her create my covers so far. I can’t wait to see what she comes up with next.

I started book three in the Blinded series for loveyoudivine yesterday and finished it today—all bar the added bits and bobs I like to put in when I read through from start to finish. You know, sights, sounds, smells, shit like that. I also want to add some stronger emotions too, because the book took an unexpected turn, and Ryan is faced with something he never thought he’d experience at his age. I have enough spare word count in the last two chapters that will allow me to add another 800 or so to each one, so there’s plenty of room for improvement. Once done, I can get back to my EC novel and revision. Next month will hopefully see both EC jobs complete, me writing Wildfire, the 4th book in the Blinded series, and then I’ll start a new m/m—a novel, something I haven’t done with m/m before. My series all read like a novel when read one after the other, but I plan to send this whole novel to EC and see if they like Sarah Masters’ voice.

Myself and Jaime Samms started another co-author the other week. This one has four main characters instead of our previous two, so we’ve estimated an 80K book. Do you dig the cover? The plot will be intricate with sub-plots bouncing around the main one. Be prepared for some rocking writing from Jaime as she brings her male policemen to life and a seriously deranged dude from me. I love writing thrillers with weirdoes in them, so to be able to pen what my heart loves best has been a blessing—and writing with Jaime, one of the easiest people to co-author with, has been bloody brilliant.

Whatever you’re writing, here’s hoping you enjoy every minute! Goodbye for now, folks!


Monday Mumbles

I had a brilliant, productive weekend. Isn’t it great when things work out the way you planned? Saturday I finally managed my scene in the co-author book with Jaime Samms. We’re at around 41K, and the finale and epilogue are Jaime’s babies. It’s been a great experience working with Jaime. I’ve said it before, but we bounce off one another and have the same ideas as to where the story is going. Jaime writes her parts in 1st person—love it!—and her character, Paul, is one half of an abusive relationship. I love the way Paul develops as the story unfolds. Although his vulnerability is always there, he gets stronger and accepts he’s worth more than being treated like dog turd. My character, Carl, is an absolute beast. A murdering, controlling beast. But at the same time I hope I’ve shown the other side to him where readers may well pity the guy, despite him being awful. The tale is called Fight—a duel-edged title, which will become clear when the book is read.

After writing my scene, I critted a novel for my friend. The time breezed by, and I finished it Saturday night, which left me all day yesterday to write some more of my latest book involving two vamps. Well, there are more in there, but the focus is obviously on my hero and heroine. It’s been fun to write so far with no stumbles along the way.

Today I’m visiting a friend’s house then coming back to read. I need a day off from writing, so rather than do all the mundane things I should be doing, like cleaning and ironing, I’m going to sit down and enjoy someone else’s manuscript. On the print book front, I’m reading my squidgy pal’s novel, Master of None by Sonya Bateman, signed by her with heart-warming words. I’ve known Sonya for years and read the book as a manuscript, but reading it as a hold-in-your-hand book is so cool it isn’t funny. I keep smiling while reading, so happy that Sonya’s hard work has paid off. She deserves it!

So, that’s about it from me today. Tomorrow is the dreaded grocery shopping and a bit of writing, but I have permission to repost an article that featured in the latest AWH magazine. I’m interested in what your thoughts will be on it.

Well, I’m off. The day proper must begin. Have a good one, folks!


Writing, A Day Off & A Couple of Covers

Thursday is usually my day off because my daughter, Nat, comes to visit. Unless I’ve got too much to do, steeped in a book, I take this day to forget about writing-based stuff and just be me. The problem is, my body and mind usually give up on me when I slow down or rest, and Thursdays see me dog tired by about three o’clock.

Anyway, I’ve been writing this week and gave myself two days to finish Burning. Unfortunately, as is usually the way with me, the book will be longer than my estimate. I’m a pantser, and my books usually evolve as I write them. The book took a different direction to my original intention, which will add another 6K to the book. No matter. So long as I know where I’m going with it, whatever word count I end up with is by the by. It just means another couple of days writing it, that’s all.

After Blinding I want to write my part in the book I’m co-authoring with Jaime Samms then it’s back into my latest EC book. Once those are done, I can start Inferno, the 3rd book in the Blinded series. It’s all go, but I’m happy with that at the moment. I have my to-do list under control and don’t feel so overwhelmed with everything on it.

I’ve been so busy this week I haven’t been walking with the girls at night. By the time seven o’clock rolls around when we usually set off, I’m shattered. My mind is drained, and the last thing I feel like doing is giving my body a battering too. But I’ll be back to walking Monday next week, because I’m determined to have Burning and my co-author scene off my list.

I’ve created a couple of covers for LYD authors. I enjoyed making them. I love doing cover art. When I go into Photoshop, I concentrate so hard on what I’m doing that everything else fades away. Here they are:

 

Hmm. That’s about it from me as Sarah Masters/Emmy. The other me, whoa, she’s having a ball with EC. One book out, another due in July, edits coming soon on a novel and a totally groovy review has given me hope that I’m onto a good thing with her. She’s been well received in various places so far, which is lovely because I did worry, using another pen name, what it would be like being a ‘new’ author again. It’s been great. Better than the first time around. I’m comfortable with her voice in her books—bonus!

Well, I’m off for a day of talking to Nat and pottering about the kitchen tidying up. I do plan to write about my ‘24’ and Lost addiction at some point, so if you’re also a fan, it would be good to read your take on the programmes. TTFN!