He needs to be the best version of himself possible… But Javier Hernández isn’t sure what is his best. He’s only ever known his dark side. A convict father and a gang remind Javier daily. Always in trouble with the law, society defined Javier as a no-good man who would end up in jail or dead. Until a chance run-in opens the door to change. Harper Winslow understands what it means to give his best. The former Marine served his country proudly. Losing his leg ended his career, but it didn’t end his recklessness. The man has a history with random men, but he hungers to find a special someone who would calm his fears and hold him on those long nights when terror set in. Two men with one goal—to be a better man. But can love overcome doubt and fear?
I loved finding a good twist in Harper's story. It couldn't be a love triangle--those rarely work out well. But helping him find who he was meant for in a unique way? Priceless!
When writing emotional scenes like this one between Harper and Grant, I have to kick to the curb preconceived notions. People who love—whether they’re straight, gay, bi—love the same. They still feel. They still hurt. They still get their hearts broken. Keeping that in mind helps writing emotion so much easier.
I loved adding this twist to the story. Usually, when a third party gets involved with a romance, it’s a love triangle. Not this one. It’s called finding the right person when you’re not even looking.
This year has been a quiet one for Nadirah Foxx. Before the pandemic, I had high hopes and big plans. All those were dashed and made writing more challenging than ever before. But I’m pleased at what I accomplished this year. I’m looking for more in 2021.
One thing I definitely didn’t do during the pandemic was workout. Being cooped up in the house with my family wasn’t really conducive to it. I tried. My workout area was also my office. Exercising in a space I spent all day in only made the situation worse. Thankfully, I got a handle on my nutrition. By the time, the state opened up and I was completely vaccinated, the pounds were coming off. Now, I’m back to working out!
I loved writing this story! When I first conceived the plot, I considered making it a love triangle. Then I realized my characters deserved more. Javier deserved someone who could appreciate his bisexuality while Harper needed someone who wanted exactly what he did.
When I wrote Javier’s story, I thought about every tale I’d ever read where the MC was unsure of himself. It didn’t matter the reason. I just wanted to pen a tale where a character finally receives clarity.
The pandemic was a rollercoaster for emotions. Some days I felt strong and able to look past the events. Other days I felt like Javier—wanting an escape from reality. One thing the isolation proved—humans need other humans. Being sealed in with family wasn’t nearly enough. We need to commiserate with others outside of our convenient circles. We need to reach out and touch the hearts and souls of others. That’s what writing allows authors to do. Thank God for that!
In each book of the TKO Love series, I mention mothers. Why? Because no matter how old you get mothers are always there for you.
Harper Winslow’s family was split down the middle. His mother and oldest sister embraced his choices in life. The had any issue with his sexuality, but that wasn’t the case for his father and younger sister. The two were hypercritical of everything Harper did—including going into the military.
I’ll be the first to admit that staying focused when the weather warms up is difficult. It’s not impossible, though. For me, I stick to a schedule unless an emergency or my health fails. My office has windows that I’ll open an allow a good breeze to come through. Just the other day, a cardinal came up to one of the windows and happily chirped, providing background music.
Pets are my other obsession. I've been missing my dogs--we had three Samoyeds. Now, I look for ways to slip a dog or two into a story. I even have an upcoming series which features a gorgeous Maine Coon Cat (probably the only cat I would ever own as a dog lover). I enjoy being able to share little pieces of myself with readers, and this is just one way of doing so.
I definitely wouldn't call my approach to writing or even my style remotely Hemingway-esque. I think it's up to each individual author--published or waiting to be--to find his or her unique style. We can take clues and tips from the greats, but in the end, we want people to remember OUR work too.
This paragraph really sums up Javier’s story. Javier Hernandez has always had to battle for whatever he wanted. Up until this moment in the story, he’s never really thought he succeeded.
I love writing the broken character. The one nobody can figure out, or the one people have dismissed as useless. Javier became one of those characters I had to write. He’s a man caught in a dilemma. As a teen, he tried to explore his sexuality but his father prevented it. As a man, he hadn’t had the opportunity. Meeting Harper is the chance with the unexpected. But this story doesn’t end the way one might think.
When life knocks you down, you have to fight back… After a brutal attack, Kaya Begay wants nothing more than to hide from the world. The young casino worker has always looked to retreat from a challenge, but then she meets Royce Wilson--a man who won't back off. The trainer for MMA pro Chance Hanlon is a force to reckon with, but he has his own set of wounds. Helping Kaya gives him the hope he desperately needs. Life seems good until Kaya begins pushing Royce away. While he's trying to figure out what's going on, his ex-wife blows into town. The woman is hell in heels and threatens any attempt at happiness Kaya and Royce might have. Can the couple move past their issues and fight for the relationship they both deserve?
Crafting great descriptions require an inventive usage of words and phrases. For me, I use The Emotion Thesaurus series by Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi.
I absolutely love writing about broken characters. The entire TKO Love Series is about people finding love after tragedies or near misses. In Fighting for Love, Kaya Begay struggles with a self-perpetuating history. Royce Wilson is trying to find love again after his first wife unceremoniously dumped him. Do they find a path to happiness? Be sure to pick up a copy before book 3 in the series comes out next month!
The TKO Love Series is all about second chances. The second book, Fighting for Love, marries hope with the prospect of renewed love. It might be easier to craft a story with two people falling in love and having no obstacles, but it wouldn't be very interesting. It's those challenges that make the story real. Tossing in a dash of hope when faced with what feels like the impossible helps.
No fantasy magic in this story unless you count the power in Kaya's smile. It was what drew Royce Wilson to her. Not a love at first sight moment. More like a very interested observer.
Under Nadirah Foxx, I have yet to write and publish a holiday tale. Royce and Kaya's story is the closest I've come.
What I loved the most about writing the TKO Love Series? Each book revolves around family. Despite the intense relationships happening between the main characters, there's always an emphasis on acknowledging family. Just as it should be.
When I imagined the first book in the TKO Love Series, I never thought past it. Writing under Nadirah Foxx, I'd only done standalone books. Royce Wilson's character, however, demanded more attention. He seemed like the type of man who had a lot going on his life. Once I thought about his book, the next ones were easier to envision.
This was a tough scene to write. I'd never been in such a position and could only imagine how I'd feel. It took a few attempts before I felt like I'd imagined it just right.
Nothing can be scarier than being alone, at night, on a lone road. It's the only scary scene in the entire book, which is a good thing since it's a romance! LOL!
When love turns to terror… Love is the last thing Rachel St. John expects when she meets two handsome men on the same night. Leo Kilpatrick is a stranger who catches her eye at the neighborhood bar. He turns out to be a nice, fun-loving man—a little on the mysterious side but nothing too serious. Matt Wallace—a cop on a mission to right a wrong—is her blind date. A serial killer murdered his foster sister, and Matt’s determined to find the culprit. The officer’s dedication makes him dark and a little dangerous. After meeting Matt and Leo, strange things start happening in Rachel’s life—like a weird dream coinciding with a power outage confined to her apartment only. Then the threats begin. Her gut tells her not to trust no one. It doesn’t help that neither Matt nor Leo trust each other. Rachel wants to trust her heart, but will it protect her? Better yet, can either man protect her from the real danger? When safety can no longer be found at home… When the one who holds your heart can’t be trusted… When the obvious isn’t anymore, who do you turn to? Not For A Moment is a tale about believing in your own strengths when the road becomes bleak.
Out of all the Nadirah Foxx titles, this book is probably my favorite. It was my first romantic suspense. Not For A Moment began as an episodic story on my blog, but I knew that format didn’t give it true justice.
Much like my MC (Rachel), I tried to be prepared. I made my publishing schedule for 2020, and began getting my drafts done. When the pandemic was first announced with stay-at-home advisories, I figured "no big deal." After all, I worked from home full-time. My days were spent on the computer crafting stories. Little did I realize how overreaching COVID-19 would become. My schedule changed at least five times. Yes, I weathered the storm, but I didn't keep my head down the whole time. I kept an eye on the rearview mirror in case more change snuck up on me. How did you weather 2020 as a reader? A writer?
When I began writing under the name Nadirah Foxx, I figured I'd be writing darker and kinkier paranormal romance. Then I stumbled upon the idea of romantic suspense, but there was still a paranormal slant. Not For A Moment was that leap of faith. I gave up the paranormal and wrote a more contemporary story filled with romance and suspense.
Normally, I write the strong heroine. Rachel was the first time I'd written a character who needed to discover where her strengths lay. At first, Rachel came off as a little too naive. By the end of the book, she gets a lot braver and so much wiser.
Besides being born in 1964, there were a lot of events that year. The most important, for me, was the signing of the Civil Rights Act. If it weren't for LBJ putting his signature on that document, I probably wouldn't be writing these words today. Our world would have been totally different had discrimination not been abolished.
Leo was the hardest character I've written. He was meant to be a true villain with no redeemable qualities. Every time you thought there was something admirable about him, he proved you wrong. I also gave him traits that should have made him likable but didn't.
Writing a contemporary story doesn't afford an opportunity to insert history, but it does require close attention to details. I'm from Detroit and have spent time in and around Royal Oak. In order for readers to believe the location, I had to keep some details accurate (street names and locales) while not focusing too hard on others (interiors of generic places). When I write a story set in real places, I do tons of research. I pull up maps, satellite images, websites--you name it. Anything that will lend legitimacy to my tale.
Freedom is one of those things we take for granted. Yes, we know how important it is. But there are other ways one's freedom can be lost. Like Matt, bad choices can have life altering consequences. Even if the action isn't jail worthy, it might make you a prisoner in your own mind. Decide not to take a risk and try a new venture? It might leave you always wondering what if. Stepping out on a limb and publishing my first book was a move away from a virtual prison. One where I'd told myself that I'd never be good enough.
When I wrote Not For A Moment, I wanted to impart the story of a woman who was a little too trusting. Rachel didn't wise up until her home was broken into. She realized how dangerous the situation had become when the stalker followed her. As a kid, our home was broken into. A few minor things were stolen along with some money. Although my father had a security system installed shortly after, the place never felt the same again.
Did you know that I was never supposed to be writing romance? Years ago, I sat down to write a political romance. Eagerly I typed out my hot sex scene. I gave it to my husband to read. It nearly put him to sleep. Afterward, I packed up my draft and swore I'd never do it again. Thankfully, I didn't keep that vow! I tried again but wrote a cyberpunk thriller. I had written a sweet romance as a short story and then decided to expand it. That led to more romance and even more romance. One never knows where the road might take them. It's one reason why I don't make resolutions anymore. I like being open to change!
Sometimes a little revelation is good for the soul. There's plenty about Matt Wallace that Rachel doesn't know. This chapter shines a light on a few things. If Rachel knew who she was dealing with, she'd probably run for the hills. But then again... The woman is glutton for punishment.
Leo has been my favorite villain to write. He was the most difficult character I wrote during 2019. The man didn't have a redeemable bone in his body. In creating him, there were times when I had to think like Rachel St. John. She wanted to like him. I wanted to like Leo. Neither of us could. He's a character who doesn't see the negativity. He doesn't see the wrong he does. Leo thinks he's justified in all he does. It will be interesting to see what difficult character I write for 2020.
Rachel St. John was not my typical female character to write. She was full of flaws, and just couldn't seem to learn from her mistakes. Everyone around her, however, saw her judgment errors. This scene illustrated that once again she could not pick the right man.
Poor Rachel St. John. She thought what was happening to her was an isolated incidence. Turns out she was only one in a long line of victimized women.
Writing the villain in this tale was particularly hard. I'd never written a character that was so thoroughly evil (not even with my paranormal stories). The bad guy in Not For A Moment didn't have any redeeming qualities when I first crafted him. It took a lot to find something good about him.
What could be darker than facing your worst nightmare? Rachel St. John had no idea what she was inviting into her life when she met two men on the same night. They both had a darkness surrounding them. They both were dangerous. Rachel really should have walked away.
Not for a Moment was the first book I'd written where I had to really get in the mind of the bad guy. He was a true villain who had to be revealed slowly. After learning who he was, I had to make sure that I didn't give away his motives too soon.
You have to love Rachel. There are so many clues thrown at her, but she just doesn't get them. Frankly, if I were in her shoes, I would have left both men alone!
It's the morning after, and Rachel is confused. Leo reminds her of someone she once knew. Even sex with him felt familiar. She's second-guessing her decisions, but she still hasn't made the connection. I loved writing this chapter. It was that moment when the main character was forced to look at herself in the mirror. She's doubting herself while also doubting the man she slept with.
We all know someone like Rachel St. John--a little too trusting of everyone she meets. One night, Rachel meets two men at a bar. They're both handsome. They're also related in a twisted sense. One man is a cop. The other is a serial killer with a connection to Rachel.
Heading up the security team for a disreputable billionaire seems the perfect outlet for Dash Copeland’s anger issues. That is, until he commits the cardinal sin of consorting with the boss’s daughter—Peyton Daniels. Worried his indiscretion could cost him his job… or his ls life… Dash turns his back on his powerful feelings for Peyton and inserts some much needed distance between them by going off the grid. He thought he could forget the seduction of her touch. Nothing could be further from the truth. When Peyton suddenly goes missing, Dash is ordered to track her down. The cost of failure being her life… and his. For the first time, Dash must cast aside his savage methods and handle the matter with a delicate hand. Will it be enough to save the only woman he’s ever loved? Or will one misstep allow his enemies to achieve their twisted agendas?
Savage Charm was that unexpected story. I had the idea for characters, but needed a story. When I decided to make both of them broken, an idea formed. I absolutely loved writing this novel.
When I first began writing under Nadirah Foxx, my plans had been to pen erotic romance. That original idea shifted to slightly from the first book to the second. By the time I wrote Savage Charm, I knew I wanted to write more romantic suspense.
Savage Charm was a fictional rollercoaster with emotion and pacing. Dash’s funeral was somber and slower paced. Peyton’s treatment by her abductors picked up the pacing. Her rescue was even faster paced. It was fun alternating between the different levels.
Savage Charm is a story that ends on a hopeful note. Two broken characters go through a lot of turmoil and in the end the crisis is mitigated and hope survives. One of my favorite stories to write.
Out of all the characters I've written, Peyton and Dash are my two all-time favorites. If anyone deserved a second chance at life, it's this couple. Both of them were almost beyond broken, but they found a path to happiness. Kind of reminds me of 2020. We spent the year in an unrecognizable state. May 2021 be our path back to happiness.
Savage Charm started out as a serialized tale for my blog. When I chose to write out the full novel during NaNoWriMo, that became a bit of a challenge. Writing two broken characters from dysfunctional families didn't put the fun in November. It was tough writing it, but I think the challenge was worth it. I learned how to write even when my heart just wasn't in it.
Peyton Daniels is the epitome of someone who doesn't do well with change. First, her mother and brother are killed. Second, Peyton's father disregards her as if she was responsible for their deaths. The one person who she can turn to is slowly turning away. The girl doesn't do well with rejection.
Peyton Daniels could barely take care of herself let alone a pet. And that father of hers? Well, any pet of his would have run away a long time ago. Some people just aren't meant to be take care of animals.
Savage Charm is all about the broken characters. It's always fun to write about someone who can find redemption. Instead of just one, I gave readers a few dysfunctional ones.
Dash Copeland has been my hands-down favorite male character to write. He was so broken that he seemed hopeless. After much thought, I figured his best counterpart was someone who was also broken but for different reasons. Together, once they saw through their own B.S., they could fix each other and find love.
I've never been to New Jersey, but that didn't stop me from setting Savage Charm in the area. With this story, I sprinkled in details to make it believable. Locations became a mere backdrop. I also haven't been to upstate New York (I've been to Rochester
Ever been an unwilling participant forced to act? Peyton Daniels, my main female character in Savage Charm, is in that terrible position. Everyone around her knows what's going on, but she doesn't. When she finally figures out the scenario, she has to make a choice. She goes along with the program, hoping it will keep her alive. I have to say I've never been in her shoes. But I know what it's like to have to keep going even when you don't want to. I've had my fair share of jobs over the years. Some were okay while others were far from it. Pushing on when I'd much rather stay home was an everyday occurrence. But like Peyton, sometimes you have to keep moving until something better comes along.
When I thought about writing Savage Charm, I wanted to write about broken characters. I'd been watching repeats of Sons of Anarchy (research for another book) and had become fond of the actor, Charlie Hunnam. His persona on SOA became Dash. I smoothed out the edges to make him honorable with an underlying anger issue. I'd also been watching Arrow and liked the actress who played the Green Arrow's sister. She became my idea for Peyton--a woman with a lot of heart but a wild streak.
Being an indie author is about being flexible. Sometimes, you have to be willing to push back a release date. Sometimes, it might be choosing a new editor or cover artist. You have to be willing to make changes when needed. Honestly, that's part of the fun. Knowing that you are completely in control of your schedule is a good thing.
People tend to take relationships for granted. I'm not necessarily talking about spouses or significant others. I'm talking about siblings and other family members. Each time I've lost someone and attended a funeral I've heard the same words. "It's a shame we only get together for funerals. We should hang out more." It's a sentiment that sounds good in the moment, but never comes to light. Why? Are we so busy with our own lives that we can only recognize those closest to us in the face of death? It's something to think about because tomorrow is not promised.
I love world building. Contemporary stories really don't require it. You choose your setting and add it to your story. When I set out to write Savage Charm, I wanted to include a French locale. I did my research to find enough info to make it authentic. When authors include locations outside of the United States, I feel like we draw in more readers and open the world up to others.
I can sort of imagine how Dash felt in his situation. When I was a kid, my sister and I went to the bank with our aunt. I believe she went to either cash a check or withdraw money. Any way, when the three of us walked around the corner a man approached us with a gun. All I remember is the weapon and my aunt handing over her purse. Thankfully, no one was hurt. I don't even know if the man was caught.
Savage Charm was my last published book for 2019 under the pen name Nadirah Foxx. When I first set out to write darker romance, I didn't know where the path would take me. Then I stumbled upon dark romantic suspense and found something I loved. A year from now I hope to have published more romantic suspense.
Dash Copeland, hands down, has been my favorite male character to write. He's almost impossibly broken. Just like Peyton, he can't see everything that's good for him. Thankfully, he has his best friend--Ollie--to try to keep him on the right path. Savage Charm started out as a different take on Beauty and the Beast. Then, my muse had a change of plans. I love the direction the story took!
Dash Copeland was my favorite broken character to write in 2019. The man had so many issues, but deep down it was his good heart that guided him down the right path.
Imagine doing anything and everything trying to get someone's attention? What if that someone was your billionaire father who didn't want you around? Who blamed you for the death of your own mother and baby brother? That was the thought that kicked off my writing Savage Charm. I wanted a broken soul. Someone who could be redeemed if she only saw her worth. Then I tossed in her savior--a man so broken he can't see beyond that. Talk about emotions!
For the first time in history Sin needs saving, but she doesn’t know it yet. What Sinatra Neeley knows is she wants it all—fancy car, huge bank account, platinum card—and a handsome man to give it to her. But love? It’s not for Sinatra. She tried that years ago with Jake Carter, a struggling archeology student. Love doesn’t put food on the table or a roof over your head. Amun Rassoul, a man possessed by an ancient deity, will give Sinatra all she desires. He’ll cherish her and shower her with wealth. But first, she has to become a vessel for the Underworld and then Amun will make her his queen. Jake, now working on his doctorate, offers Sinatra an uncertain future while Amun, the man from the past, can give her the world—endless sex with a seat on an ancestral throne. But only one man possesses her heart. Can Jake deliver Sin before she gets stuck in the Underworld?
Mythology might not be historically accurate, but it does lend itself beautifully to stories. In college, I enjoyed learning about Egyptian mythology. Writing Delivering Sin gave me a chance to use my resources in crafting a unique story.
I love writing a diverse story. The more varied the characters, the better. It's my way of including all readers in my books. Call it a glimpse at the real world.
I've always had a fascination with witches--no idea where it came from. As a kid, I found all sorts of ways to feed my curiosity--even at the supermarket. Anyone remember Dell pocket books? One day I found one on casting spells for witches. The books were like twenty-five cents, but I had to beg my mom to buy it. It wasn't that we couldn't afford it, but she thought it was a major waste of time. I got my coveted book home and read all of it (probably less than 50 pages). Sadly, I couldn't try any of the spells because I didn't have the ingredients. Oddly, that book miraculously disappeared. Being a kid, I wanted to believe the book vanished because of mystical reasons. Most likely, it was my mother tossing out the creepy tome. Of course, she still won't admit to it.
Well, I've never been in Sinatra's position before, but I do know what's it's like not to hear a thank you. When you work long hours in a stuffy office, it tends to happen. But I can say it hasn't happened as an author! I have met some wonderful people at book signings and conventions. People who have read my books and they do say thank you. Even the new readers who might not purchase right away but will grab a bookmark or a piece of swag. In 2020, I look forward to meeting more readers and sharing my stories with them.
Vampire fangs, vials of dragon’s blood, and tarot cards are a few of the oddities found at Vanpeer’s. Then an obsidian mirror is delivered and a mysterious man enters her life. Dwade jostles Twilight’s life. Suddenly, she’s having memories that make no sense. Adding to the weirdness are her feelings for Dwade and her lifelong best friend, Preston. One man is the key to her past while the other holds her future. Just when Twilight thinks she’s figured out things, women who look like her keep turning up dead in the French Quarter. Twilight has some serious choices to make. One option appeases the gods while the other speaks to the shadow found in all of us.
Robbed of her future and family, Kerrie King is on the hunt for justice. After thugs murdered her husband and two-year-old son, a fiery determination ignited within Kerrie to find the killers. Never could she have imagined her hunt would lead her to Project Triton and a super suit that would change everything. Now, she finds herself charged with uncovering corruption in Liberty City and dealing with resurfacing feelings for her best friend, Josh. In the midst of it all, can Kerrie find a way to rebuild her life? Or will the dilemmas of maintaining a mild-mannered alter ego thrust her deeper into her heroic new calling?
Writing a vigilante thriller with romantic elements was a giant leap for me. I got the idea while watching the CW’s Arrow. I’m a huge DC fan, but I had yet to see a female character who was part vigilante and part heroine.
Thanks to the writers of DC Comics and the CW! You step out on a limb and create fantastical characters in impossible situations. You bring us creative story lines and let tried and true personas battle demons (sometimes their own) and villains. Without you, I wouldn't have stepped out of my comfort zone and penned a female vigilante. I gave her a difficult circumstance and let her find a means to justice. Thank you for helping me craft one of my most dynamic and fun stories yet!
At least, that's what I like to believe. Look at the success of the Marvel and DC franchises. So I thought why not create a superhero who didn't start out to be one. A female version of a cross between Batman and the Arrow. This book was fun to write, and I hope readers of superheroes enjoy it!
When it comes to history, whether it's factual or fictional, I like to weave in bits and pieces into the story. In Justice from the Shadows, the history helped define Kerrie's character and her actions. It was a matter of crafting it so that it made sense.
I loved writing the character of Kerrie Ann. In crafting a female vigilante, she had to have a compelling reason to fight. She also had to be pretty smart to figure out when things were awry. Kerrie Ann King walked a serious tight rope. On one hand, she desperately wanted to just be the grieving widow. On the other, she wanted justice. Caught in the middle was her re-emerging desire for her best friend. A complex woman I look forward to writing more of.
Writing Justice was my creative hutzpah moment. It wasn't that readers had never read a dark vigilante story. They'd certainly read ones with kick-butt heroines. But what about a tale with a woman who went through the ultimate of tragedies and had to claw her way back to some semblance of normal? That is what drove this book.
My family will cringe as I tell you this, but I'm a HUGE fan of the DC Comics shows on the CW Network. When Arrow aired its last episode, I was sad. Although I knew the show had run its course, I wanted more. Why not invent my own vigilante? It had to be a female. According to psychological profiles, women have to be greatly moved in order to take the law into their own hands. And that's how Kerrie King and Liberty City were born.
Words should give you an indication of character. Although Kerrie King painted a great image of Tristan Edwards, it was her summation that proved her point.
Kerrie King's life was flipped upside down. One would think that she would have had the support of ALL her family. Yeah, I stuck with the cliche of the mother-in-law who really didn't like her daughter-in-law. Why? Because Gertrude King was so much fun to write as the evil woman.
Writing about Josh's reaction to Debbie was fun. Imagining how he would respond to meeting his idol was based off an interaction I had with an author. I was tongue-tied and probably gushed over the woman. Who knew it would become reference material later?
Kerrie King is a woman designed for taking risks. Before losing her family, she was a cybercrime analyst in Liberty City. She lost faith with the department when nobody was charged with the murders of her husband and child. Kerrie formed her own rebellion, doing whatever was necessary to bring about justice. One might consider it a small act of protest.
Kerrie's not the only one dealing with a new reality. I haven't done the grocery shopping in my household in months. Being someone with underlying health issues, I've left that task up to my husband. A new store opened in our area, and I haven't even been able to see it outside of pics online. But venturing out brings other issues. There's an entire wipe down procedure before my husband enters the house. Then, all the items must be properly wiped down before being put away. When it's all done, everyone is worn out. Could we do differently? Omit parts of our process? Short answer? Sure we could, but why mess with what has kept us healthy? What extravagant measures have you taken in dealing with the pandemic?
Perfect title--and chapter--for today's bubble. Thanks to the pandemic and subsequent quarantine, my plans have changed tremendously. One thing I have learned is that I have to have deadlines. They can be loose, but not totally gone. Without them, I'm not very productive. So I'm having to find ways to move forward and maintain some sort of schedule. How about you?
I don't know about you, but I love an emotion-filled scene. It's even better if there's action with it. That was my goal in writing Justice from the Shadows. I wanted an action-packed tale that grabbed your heart. Something that made readers reach for a tissue while holding onto their anger. For me, I like feeling what the main characters endure. With Kerrie King, readers get a depth of emotion--sorrow, angst, and even love. She's not your typical vigilante. What type of character do you like reading about?
Writing Justice from the Shadows was like showcasing my creativity. I love making up fictional worlds. I think it goes back to being a kid--making up scenarios for dolls, etc. Liberty City was the ultimate in world building. Not only did I come up with details for what places looked like, I made an entire metropolis. In my mind, I wanted something which rivaled DC Comics and Marvel. Instead of a generic coffee shop, I came up with The Coffee Bar. Need a burger? Head over to Colossal Burger. And don't forget breakfast. You can grab a quickie at the Egg & Shmear! And yes, I spent a lot of time online making sure there wasn't one of these names easily found on the Internet.
Wouldn't it be cool to be invisible? Be able to slip in and out of a place sight unseen? For a fleeting moment, Kerrie King relished the idea. Then she had to navigate public transportation. It's one of those moments that would have easily been captured in a DC Comics TV show or movie and not so much by Marvel. Don't get me wrong. I love BOTH universes! When I want a little comedy with my superhero antics, I watch DC. If I'm in a serious mood, then it's time for Marvel. What do you think? If you're a fan of comics, which do you prefer?
Kerrie King's story is nothing to laugh at. Not unless you count her shock when she saw the sexy one-piece super suit. Her thoughts went from the obvious to the not so obvious. I had to insert a little humor here. Ever wonder what the female superheroes think when they see some of the costumes given them?
Kerrie King loses her husband and child in this story. It takes a certain level of bravery to weather the storm and go off to work less than two weeks after the tragedy. Of course, Kerrie's situation doesn't compare to all the brave men and women who have put their lives on the lines so that others may survive. Thanks to all of you--the doctors, nurses, and first responders--for everything that you continue to do!
I loved writing this scene between Josh and Kerrie. It starts out with a memory of a promise Josh made to her when they were in teens. I'd been working up to the moment. It was something they'd both wanted, but continued to back pedal. Then it happens. You get a feeling that both characters have been wanting it for a very long time.
I wrote Justice from the Shadows as my homage to superheroes and dark vigilantes. No, there aren't any characters with super powers. Think more like a female heroine like Batman or even the Green Arrow. Kerrie King didn't set out to become a vigilante. She was just someone who worked cybercrime with the Liberty City Police Department. She had a husband and a son and they all lived in an idyllic suburb. It was fun creating her world and the reasons for her team of vigilantes to exist.
Readers are used to vigilantes being male. Personally, I wanted to read about a female who would move heaven and earth to get justice. In my research I found that females who turn vigilante do so because of extreme measures. I believe this scene gave Kerrie King plenty of reason to walk on the dark side.
Kerrie King's life used to consist of going to work each day. She looked forward to spending the evening playing with her two-year-old son. The best part was being with her husband, Ryan. They had the idyllic life in the suburbs. And then it all changed. This excerpt is from the chapter highlighting the significant changes coming to her life.
When you throw punches, sometimes life throws one back… Ten years ago, Chance Hanlon and Ximena Ibarra were the hottest couple in town. Then a tragedy broke them up and changed their lives. Chance headed for the octagon while Ximena spent her days trying to recover. When Ximena’s father dies, the couple comes face-to-face. Keeping the memories hidden isn’t working for her. It’s definitely not working for Chance, but he refuses to walk away. This time he’s ready to fight for something more important than a title or a belt. Will the fighter be victorious outside of the ring in the only battle that matters?
I love writing characters with major issues. The best ones to write have been the angry guys. Usually, there's a reason for the wrath, but it takes them a moment to connect with the cause. Chance Hanlon spends a good portion of Fighting for Mine getting a handle on his anger along with how to ease it.
I like openings that draw you in. That make you wonder what the heck is going on. If I can find an emotional edge? Bingo!
I'll admit that I've suffered from the affliction more than a few times. It's not because I'm stressed out. More like an inability to shut the mind up. If you suffer from the occasional bouts of amnesia, have you tried the Chance Hanlon method of solving it?
When I wrote this scene, I immediately thought about all the times I picked up my kid from school. Most of the time, she was a ball of energy excited to get out of school and go home to play--not do homework. As she progressed through school and picked up activities after school, getting her focused on homework was about as successful as curtailing young CJ!
Writing Fighting for Mine was a joy! I got the opportunity to slide in a little creativity, especially in Chance's big fight scene. There's even a little nod to DC Comics!
Chance and Ximena's story came to my mind years ago and never left. When the amateur MMA fighter opened the door on his childhood home, it became a metaphor for his own messed up life. It took a lot to perfect this scene in order to display the right image.
You won't find me writing about COVID-19 romances, but you will find other elements of current events in my stories. In Fighting for Mine, I chose to shine a light on how addiction to some prescription drugs tear apart communities. It was my attempt to make Chance Hanlon's story as real as possible.
My favorite character to write is the man in need of redemption. The idea of Chance Hanlon came to me a few years ago. Thanks to a picture prompt, I envisioned a fighter who wasn't just battling men in the ring. He had demons chasing him, and they caught up to him.
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