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Writing with Modesty

I often think…how do some actresses get in front of the camera and take all their clothes off? I have trouble getting undressed in my closet, let alone for the free world to see. Albeit, if I looked like some of those women, I might…no, I still wouldn’t. I mean, don’t they have parents that is going to see that movie? Isn’t there a shaw-wearing grandma somewhere on their family tree that they will never be able to sit across the dinner table and not feel like she just saw me doing naughty things with a guy? Does this mean I won’t get her passed-down pasta recipe now?

Enter my thoughts on writing… My mother, God bless her soul, reads every one of my books. For that, I’m truly appreciative. After all, I feel I get my imagination from her. BUT it makes me feel weird when I write certain subject matter. I am in no way a steamy writer, so that’s not a biggie. I was the girl in gym class changing in the bathroom stall until the 10th grade. After that, I just wore two layers of clothes so I didn’t look like a freak going into the back corner. What makes us modest? I’m not sure. It can’t be genetic. My two sisters can walk out in the street naked, if needed. I’m the one shrouded in button-up sweaters and two tee shirts underneath that. My daughter, coincidentally is the same way as me. LOL That’s why I got a tickle out of someone promoting my books as steamy. What a scream! They obviously didn’t read it. 🙂 Still, this last release was my most edgy. I think I wrote the word breast at least a handful of times. he-he  But then there was the bad word. Nothing to do with physical modesty, but it was out of my comfort zone to write it. Sure, I’ve said it aloud a few times. That’s when whoever around me knows I mean serious business. And so I typed it with rapid strokes, mid-story. I was in the character’s head and it felt so right. So necessary. Is vulgarity ever necessary? I asked myself. I even pondered it with my son. I’ve watched so many movies where if only they’d left out a scene, my kids could’ve watched it. Or if the writer had refrained from the unnecessary language, all of us could’ve enjoyed it. So did my book require that word? My book didn’t, but my character did. And so I kept it. You have to be careful…too many of these and you lose readership of those you gained for not writing like that in the first place. Hopefully not too much thought was wasted on it, and it was brushed over quite quickly. Just as it was written.

Back to modesty, how modest are you? Does it play into what you read? What you write? I don’t mind reading racy. In fact, sometimes I like it. Depending on the book. Writing women’s fiction, racy doesn’t usually get a lot of play. Perhaps that’s why I like writing it!

Have a grand day, everyone!

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New Book, New Look

Were you tired of seeing Sarah on all the covers? Or rather her hands, her torso, or her covered head? Well this time it appears to be a cover of her happily ever after guy!! Yummy…who will it be? I’ve been so happy writing my final Sarah. It’s bittersweet, actually. Just like writing the final Amy. I was so sad to see her go. I’d gotten so accustomed to writing her I felt like I was losing a friend. Same with Sarah. But I find it okay because I send them out with the guy of their dreams…or do I? You know how fickle we are, right? I’ve been giving serious thought about Amy… What if….

Okay, okay… but anything could happen. Then this might happen!You know you wouldn’t mind! You never know…

So back to Sarah. She is ready to find love, for Pete’s sake! And she will in book 3. Finally. There’s a lot of possibilities, but there is one that sticks. And I can’t wait until you read which one! It’s on sale now on pre-order, and it releases January 4th. I’m super excited. I hope you are, too.

 

Warning: This book will have closure!

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Full Circle

Well I did it! I made it through my son’s first year at college. 🙂 I feel like I was just here…plucking away at this computer, moaning and groaning about what I was going to do without him. And next week he’ll be back. Never more to be a freshman. I pointed this fact out to him this weekend, and he’s sort of bummed about it. Yes, he’s quite a sensitive chap. Things like never being a single digit again (turning 10 was big for him), or his last year home as a “kid”, were milestones. But I think he’s ready to return. I’m ready for him to return. It’s not terrible when he’s away for a long time. I get used to it. But when he comes back for say a week, it’s hard to get used to him being gone again.

Anyway, onto other things. I have a book releasing this week! Woo-hoo. Can’t wait. Jumping up and down on the inside. You just can’t see it. 🙂 It’s amazing to think I’m beginning another series, but I am. As usual, I’m a bit nervous how everyone will perceive Sarah. I’m resolved to know there will be some who don’t get her, some who think I’m writing their own story, and a few that stop reading after page 10. I get it. I’m that person, too. Everyone is. Reading is so subjective. For instance, I’m judging a writing competition this month, and there was one submission that I couldn’t read. I had to turn it back in and request someone else judge it. It wouldn’t be fair for me to do it. It’s just not my cup of tea. Heck, it wasn’t even tea, in my world. It’s not that it was poorly written, it just wasn’t something I could endure any longer. Past page four. But it amazes me how someone can read something I’ve written, not reach page 10 and plaster it with a one star on Amazon and Goodreads. I was raised that if you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything. Oh well, not all were raised with the same theory, I suppose.

Onto depressing. Because doesn’t everyone need a bit of gloom in their day? Not really, but I had to mention it. Erin Moran died. Joanie Cunningham, as I’ll always remember her. What a sad life she turned out to have. I mean you have Ritchie, the now-director of blockbuster films, then you have his kid sister. Living without money, in a very depressed fashion of a life. What happened, Joanie? It in no way resembled her character on Happy Days. I think some people, no matter what cards they’re dealt, will have to struggle. And it’s sad. 56 years old. Rest in peace.

I hope everyone has a great week. I’ve got 3 birthdays to celebrate this week. My daughter’s is one of them. All of my kids get to choose their dinner and their dessert on their day. She has chosen spaghetti (in which I like the least…okay, I hate spaghetti), and white cake and white icing. Is she even my kid? No chocolate? I’m going to have to serve chocolate ice cream on the side or something. I hope I can make it without wincing. White on white?

Until next time!

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Greetings, From One Happy Author

happy-writerToday marks the publication of my fifth book!! Can you believe it? Five….let me think about that for a second. It wasn’t too long ago that I was trying to spit out book 2 in my Amy series. And now Mister Five is debuting. Hard to believe. And all in one year, I might add! I hope this doesn’t come across braggy or anything. That’s one thing I don’t do, but I’m amazed how my year has gone down. I’m happy to have been able to achieve this. I didn’t really set out to do it. I didn’t have a plan at all, really. The words kept coming, the fingers kept moving, and there you have it! Book five, “The Secret He Keeps”, is hitting the market today.

I must admit, I’m a bit nervous about this one. I’ve had some mixed reviews. Some don’t like the ending…or should I say, ‘who done it’. And as you know that all it takes is for one or two people not to like an outcome and poof, there’s that crazy self-doubt…strutting in like he owns the town. In this case, my mind. You see, it begins to wander and pace and think, ‘should I rewrite some things? make it pleasing to the ones that don’t like it?’ Or, should I stand confident that I do like the outcome. I wrote it for Pete’s sake. No, not everyone is going to like everything you write, but be proud of it. It’s your words. It’s your heart inside those pages.

The second reason I could be feeling antsy might be because it’s different from the other books I’ve published. Not so much “A Reason to Stay”, but from Amy. Amy is shy, naive, and borderline G-rated. Rachel, from “The Secret He Keeps’, not so innocent! There is more colorful language, and the storyline is way over on the other end of the spectrum from dear, sweet, innocent Amy. I’m hoping it doesn’t prove to dissapoint my Amy fans.

Aside from all the self-doubt a writer goes through before placing their work in the hands of readers, I’m hoping for great reviews. (fingers crossed) Writing about complicated love and messy people isn’t easy. It’s not predictable, and it gets sticky in situations. For all those who give Rachel a chance, to see what lies behind that locked memory of hers, thank you bunches. After all, she’s just an ordinary woman, suppressing some extraordinary feelings. It’s a technique that’s got her this far, but how will she handle life when all the memories come crashing down?

Here’s my giveaway for someone to take a liking to Amy! She’s still one of my favorites. 🙂 Good luck on winning.

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/b9a55db3187/?

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New Release Set to Roll Out!

julieanndove_thesecrethekeeps_450x675I will admit…this is my favorite book. Well, of mine. I love them all for different reasons, but this one was the beginning of my journey as a writer. I can’t tell you how many drafts this thing has seen. It looks NOTHING like the first one. Or the second one, and certainly not the fifth and sixth one. This thing has morphed into…well, this!

“The Secret He Keeps” has had all kinds of different titles, as well. I entered it into a contest four years ago under the name “Gravity”. It was a finalist, but no cigar, by the way. And then I had “Side Effects of Widowhood”. That stuck for awhile. That was actually my favorite rendition. “The Heart Remembers” has  also been saved with some changes on my computer. Alas, this is the winner of all my indecisiveness. 🙂

I’ve loved writing this in so many ways, too. It began with way more people involved in the plot, too. Then it came down to just two! I so hope you’re going to like them. Rachel is another complicated, messy woman I’ve dreamed up. She’s lost her husband to a car accident. One that she survived. One that provided her with a selective memory of the past. And she has no idea that it’s the very fragile thread that keeps her sane. Not recalling the self-destruction her husband went through is protecting his perfect image she carries in her mind. It’s also protecting the image she has of herself. But someone knows all about it. And you’re not going to believe who it is!

Warning–I’ve written my first clue-type book. I wouldn’t really categorize it as a mystery, but it certainly has a tiny bit of suspense. And just 9 weeks until it releases…

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Fall is Coming Fast!

fall-coloringThe leaves are beginning to change color here! I can’t believe it. It seems the very second school goes back in session, the weather gets colder and the leaves begin to change. Next week I’ll take down all my summer decorations, and prepare for the fall ones! It makes the house seem so different with the yellow, orange, and brown hues.

So I picked up my son for the Labor day weekend. It was great having him home. It was as if he never left. But tis Monday, and he’s leaving again. 😦  We were able to go out with the family though on Saturday. We shopped, ate, and toured the burg a bit. Sunday he mostly did homework. Which was okay, because  I wrote the better part of the day. It was a productive time, creatively speaking.

I have a new writing room in my house. It’s pretty cool. My photos of inspiration are tacked on a board, above where I write. Constant muse, huh? My work in progress is a bit different than Amy. I find I’m hedging on the side of suspense. Which totally makes sense. I love crime shoes. Not that my books will be anything intensive and murder driven, but the tint of mystery will keep a good pace about it, I hope.

Three day weekends are fun, but it messes with me until Friday. I always feel a day behind. Today, which is Monday, does not feel as such. It feels like Sunday. I will be trying to find that missing day until Friday, at which time I’ll say…”Friday already?”

Not much other to report. I have my “Waking Amy” offered for free at the moment. Hopefully it will give readers a chance to start the series and follow up with the third one, which releases in three short weeks! I’m so completely excited. And…”A Reason to Stay” is on sale for .99 cents. I check in to see if any new reviews are happening. They are what feed my writing. I love to read what people think of the characters.

https://www.instafreebie.com/free/rVURO

I’m gearing up for the final release of the year. Unless something happens, it will debut December 8th. It is the first in my suspense romance line. Personally it’s my favorite. I’ve been munching on this story for four long years. It has changed so much, I don’t recall what happened in the first draft! I’ll have to celebrate when this one come out, for sure. It was the first story that got me into writing professionally. 🙂

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So Long, August

september-1August was definitely a challenging month for me. I had exactly two weeks before all the chaos began to take place. And who can rest when all they hear is the constant ticking of the clock…tick, tock…tick, tock.

I had to spend the first part of the month preparing for back to school for everyone, including the preparation of sending my first born off to fend for himself in the throws of college. At a place he’s unaccustomed to, without anyone he knows. It was horrific. Perhaps more for me than him. Yes, I got upset. Who doesn’t? For eighteen years I did everything for that boy. And now I’m lucky if I get a phone call from him every couple of days. Which I’m not complaining. Okay, so I am…but I’m happy he’s not homesick and burning the wires telling me he’s got nothing to do. In fact, he’s more busy with four classes than he was with six at home. He’s become very social. And so I’m most happy for him.

Then came the new classes for everyone else in the family. And new teachers. It’s been quite a learning curve to know who will tolerate what and who won’t let you use the bathroom. Can you believe my 10 year old isn’t allowed to use the bathroom in the afternoon? Hello? By then, all the juices and water fountain trips are beginning to settle in the bladder. So I have to endure the car ride home with him doing a jig in the backseat. I simply advised him, upon being told he can’t use the bathroom, to ask if they still keep an emergency set of pants on hand…and do it in his chair. Is this obnoxious? Un-called for? Probably, but come on. Let the boy go take care of business, for goodness sakes.

So the schedules are now in place and September is upon us. I’m getting in the groove of how it’s going to be for the ending months of the year. And September is the month of the release for “Finding Amy.” I’m so excited about this! I’ve had a couple people read it and gotten really good comments. Squee!! And I’m putting it out there for free, for a limited time…just to get everyone primed for the third release. So please feel free to take advantage of this! And of course, let me know what you think. I love to read reviews. …well, some of them. 🙂

With that said, welcome, September! I’m happy to see you back around.

https://www.instafreebie.com/free/rVURO

 

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As Fate Would Have It

KEVINLast week I had it all planned out–new book, new characters, and new city. That was last week. And although I rolled that plot around in my head for days, perfecting it, finding the holes, and sewing up others…it got thrown to the back burner! As in, slammed to the back burner. I woke up Friday to an entirely different story. A meatier one. I think I’m going to be two authors. One who writes romantic, light-hearted pieces and another one who writes deeper ones. A little less on the funny side, heavy on the introspect.

So, this one rolling around in my daydreams stars none other than Kevin Costner. Don’t you just love this guy? I think I fell in love with him in “The Bodyguard”, or was it “For Love of the Game”? Take your pick. He’s a total classic.

And then we have Jennifer Garner. She’s such a good girl–wholesome, nurturing, wants to see the best in people. This will be my heroine. Isn’t she pretty? Another classic. Well not really that old to be a classic yet, but give her another ten years.

Jennifer Garner wallpaper (66)I’ve got so much to do on this story, furthermore, so much to do in my real life. Although I am tickled pink to have such a rich story awaiting the pages of my processor, I only have a week to prepare for all the back to school madness. Everyone has received their schedules, most of the supplies have been purchased, and I’m preparing myself for the departure of college boy. Perhaps this sidetrack of a new story came at the perfect time, after all!

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Win a brand new Amazon Kindle Fire and 17 ebooks during the HotDamn! Summer Giveaway

HotDamnSummerReads_Dove

What’re you reading this summer? What would you do with a brand new Amazon Kindle Fire and 17 ebooks? You’d have a HotDamn! Summer, that’s what! Enter the HotDamn! Summer Reads Giveaway for the chance to win a copy of Waking Amy!

I am excited to be participating in this event and have joined with 17 authors to bring you a HotDamn! Summer.

Participating Authors:
• Jackson D’Lynne
• Gina Danna
• Juliette Cosway
• Magda Alexander
• Lyn Horner
• Chloe Flowers
• Sharon Hamilton
• Susan Grant
• Mary Karlik
• Allie Harrison
• Debra Jess
• Bonnie Vanak
• Kenzie Macallan
• Julieann Dove
• Suzie T. Roos
• DB Michaels
• Tess Rider

Contest runs from now through June 30th. Good luck!
Enter Here: a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Life Imitating Fiction

narciso_zWhen I first began writing “Waking Amy”, it was a long time ago. Things were different…life was different. More importantly, different for my best friend. She is also one of my beta readers. She tells me like it is. Tells me when to flush the manuscript, bury it out back, and when she stayed up till past 2 in the morning just to see who ended up with who.

She enjoyed Amy…she had a few bouts of “why is she so weak”, but overall, found her to be a likeable girl. Flash forward a year later…to “Leaving Amy.” My friend began reading it as usual, and then something happened. Her marriage began to take some tumbles. She stopped reading my book, saying she just couldn’t do it. It reflected her life too much. All that happened in “Waking Amy” was starting to take form in her own life. She was becoming Amy!

This past month has taken a turn for the worst. Her husband left her like Wesley left Amy…and for the same reasons. Out of left field. How does that happen? I’m not naïve to the fact that there are two sides to every situation, and there must’ve been some writing on the walls, but to leave? When there are children? And not to go back? Not to try? To just throw your arms up, say “it’s been real for the last 15 years, but I think I’m going to go and do something different now.” ?

Needless to say, it’s been extremely painful to watch her go through this. To wake up one morning and know she’s a single mom, and clueless to what the next year will bring with custody and support. I dedicated “Leaving Amy” to her. I had no idea I was writing her story in bits and pieces. On a side note, she put my book away and has yet to finish it.

My third Amy book is about resolution. Without spoiling the second book, which releases on May 1st, Amy seeks to find herself in the final edition. As I sit and watch all the struggles my friend is facing, it helps me write. I will find her voice and I will give her courage. Even if it takes until whenever that she is able to read it.