I’ve been crazy busy for nearly a month. What with dad hurting himself—for those of you who didn’t know, he broke his hip, had surgery, and is now in a rehab facility—my schedule was hit hard. And I didn’t have wiggle room to begin with, not after putting books up for pre-order that weren’t already written.
Luckily, I finished the first one, S*x on the Beach. Now, I have to wrap up Hook by next Friday, get it edited, formatted, and uploaded before my KDP deadline hits. I haven’t taken any time off and barely have time to spare to have a cup of coffee with my dd or a meal with family. If I got sick right now, I’d be toast. (I’m knocking on wood, because I don’t want to jinx myself!)
On top of all that, I have a plotting bootcamp starting on Monday and a classful of writers ready for me to lead them. I’m just a little stressed.
Things I don’t worry about and won’t until I reach THE END? Cleaning house, cleaning the pool, wearing makeup, blow-drying my hair, washing clothes, clipping my nails…you get the picture? I’m pretty scary-looking when I’m in deadline mode.
The five-year-old sighs when she sees me. “Do you always have to write?” Yes, baby, I do. Or at least for the next week, but there is light at the end of the tunnel. I just have to get there!
So, be thinking happy thoughts for me. Tell the universe I have grit (not that I’m gritty!), I’m fierce, and I’m going to do this!
For the past year, my daughter’s been systematically “downsizing.” What does that mean to her? She’s been “decluttering” rooms and tossing or giving away things she doesn’t actually use. She’s gone on a closet-cleaning craze where she places everything on hangers—backwards—and if she hasn’t turned the hanger, meaning she’s taken out the garment and worn it, at the end of the year, it goes.
She’s now turned her attention to my living space.
She supervised a closet review, where every single piece of clothing was dumped onto my bed and reviewed. “Does it fit? No?” Gone. “When was the last time you wore it?” If I can’t tell her it was in recent years, it’s gone. Yes, it is nice to have room to slide my hangars, but gah!
Now, she wants to trim my bookcases, because—shame, shame—not all my books fit into my three tall bookcases. I’ve tried to make room, double and triple stacking, but, to her, that’s not good enough. I can trim some of the books I read for entertainment. Very few are those I’d want to read again. However, that’s not enough.
She’s running up against my stubborn hold on my research books. After all, I need all those occult and mythology books. Who doesn’t have rows of them? Or at least, what writer who loves to delve into mystical topics doesn’t collect research materials? The problem is, my occult and mythology collection is larger than my local library’s and the two colleges’ libraries in town.
I have many, many spell books. Translations of writings from Egyptian sarcophagi and The Land of the Dead, and Sumerian, Norse, Eastern European, etc., “monster” books that I love to thumb through when I’m wishing I could write more stories like my “mummy book”, Crescent Moon, or my Vikings in Space story, Ravished by a Viking. The problem is, as my dd and my sister point out all the time, that those stories don’t sell as well as SEALs and bounty hunters!
If you could see me now, I’m frowning and my shoulders are drooping. I love to write my action heroes, but just like I need a varied diet to keep my body healthy, I need to vary what I write—for my own enjoyment and mental health.
I have a SEAL book to finish for Entangled tomorrow. Then I have a SEAL/bounty hunter book to write by the end of the month, and a bounty hunter book due by mid-September. My schedule is crazy-full. I have another Beaux Reve Coven story I’d love to start, but I keep pushing it off due to hard deadlines. And what I really want is to start something new and exciting. Something that pulls from those Sumerian and Egyptian tales, but I have to be smart. Have to make money. You know, to pay my bills… 🙁
So, here I am, having just finished editing another wonderful author’s story, and I’m opening the file for “Spider”—a SEAL story that has plenty of action, in and out of bed. By the end of the day, I have no doubt I’ll be dreaming about what happens next, and forget about my momentary melancholy. I have the best job in the world. I live in my head, most days. I live many lives, many adventures, and I learn something new with every book I write. This time, I’m researching modern booby-traps, like “alarm mines”. Not as exciting as reading about those pesky ice dragons, but—maybe—I’ll pencil in some time in my future schedule for something fun.
So, a question for you…
Do you pretty much exclusively read contemporary romance? Or do you love a paranormal tale, too? If so, what would you love to read?
This message is for any authors or aspiring authors who might be interested in some intensive help developing their next stories.
Don’t let that word “intensive” scare you away; I’ve led newbies, as well as multi-published authors, through our plotting process numerous times. Everyone comes away with new knowledge and insight, or at the very least, some terrific brainstorming support!
While lessons and exercises will be posted throughout the month of September, this is truly a self-paced class. We all have busy lives, and the workshop is designed to accommodate any schedule. Enjoy the pitch below!
ROSE’S ONLINE PLOTTING BOOTCAMP
Dates: September 10 – October 6, 2018 Last date to register: September 10, 2018 Cost: $50.00—cheap, considering everything you get! Your DI (Drill Instructor): Delilah Devlin Offered through: www.rosescoloredglasses.com
What you can expect: LOGLINE (Lunges) PREMISE (Pushups) CHARACTER (Strengthening exercises) CONFLICT! CONFLICT! CONFLICT! Breaking through the STORY STRUCTURE stronghold Battling the PLOT LINES
We do more in one month than some people do all year! Get tough! Get motivated! Get plotting!
Join your Drill Instructor, Delilah Devlin, to learn a methodical approach to harness your creativity in order to produce an in-depth plot for your next novel.
Sound scary? It is!!!! Especially when you’re staring at an empty page without a compass and a map to guide you through the novelistic jungle. Your DI will lead you through four weeks of tactics, exercises, and training that will help strengthen your abilities. Delilah will accomplish this with weekly lessons, bi-weekly chats, and daily online communication. Join her for bivouac in September!
Join this elite force now!
For those who don’t know, my sister and I co-founded the website for writers called Rose’s Colored Glasses in 2004. From that site, we run a critique group and provide workshops—some free and some for pay. In September, I will be leading a month-long plotting bootcamp. It’s a great time to join—something you can do for yourself to get ready for NANOWRIMO in November! Join me if you can! ~DD
How’s our workshop different from every other one out there? I’ll provide feedback and brainstorming every step of the way!
Science fiction is popular for both writers and readers of erotic romances. The reason is simple, at least it is for me. Give me a fictional world and I’ll design it to meet any number of needs. The rules, regulations, and social standards modern people live in won’t get in the way of characters’ desires because they don’t exist. Domineering men and submissive women or the other way around (which doesn’t happen much in erotic romance) don’t require justification when that’s standard operating procedure. I don’t have to justify why a man places a woman over his knee and repeatedly applies his hand to her ass. Everyone, readers included when they suspend belief, simply accepts that this is how things are. A woman doesn’t yell “insanity” if the man in her life treats her like a small child. Instead, she gets the norms of the world she finds herself.
Okay, that’s all well and good. A woman wears a collar and crawls on hands and knees behind the hunk who commands her to.
But what’s their physical world like?
Setting is vital to me, the most important thing in many ways.I can’t start a story until I know what the characters’ world looks like. And here’s a secret. I suck at creating fictional worlds. If you’ve read some Vonna Harper erotic fiction, you may have noticed I don’t put my characters on distant, exotic planets with complex social and political structure. Instead, I tend to rely on the corner of the world I know.
Case in point, one of my recent releases is Midnight Touch. Much of this story about a couple each with a heavy load of emotional baggage takes place in eastern Oregon. No urban center or exotic city for me because those things do nothing for me. Give me wide open spaces every time—spaces where the limited number of residents live their isolated lives in private. Sara’s dead ex-husband was a domineering SOB who got away with treating her as he wanted because there was no one for her to turn to or confide in. She seldom saw anyone and didn’t know whether she could trust those she did. I didn’t need to invent a planet because I had remote ranching country with more cattle than humans. I know what eastern Oregon’s high desert land looks like because I’ve been there. No need to try to figure out where water and other necessities come from. I’ve seen the wells.
I also know the hero doesn’t belong there, but he has no choice because Sara needs him in ways only he can understand.
As for the reasons—looks like you’ll have to read Midnight Touch to understand, hint, hint. You might also wind up with a darn good idea what eastern Oregon is like.
STRANDED: A BOYS BEHAVING BADLY ANTHOLOGY
Editor: Delilah Devlin Deadline: November 15, 2018
STRANDED is open to all authors.
Editor/Author Delilah Devlin (me!) is looking for stories for a romantic erotica anthology tentatively entitled STRANDED: A BOYS BEHAVING BADLY ANTHOLOGY.
Why write a short story for this collection? Well, it’s certainly not about making a lot of money, so why do it at all? I have several thoughts…
Writing a short story for a call for submissions is a chance to flex your writing muscle! It can be a chance to experiment with a genre you’ve never written. If you’ve never written a story in first person but don’t want to begin by writing an entire novel using it, start short! For myself, I’ve written stories in new genres or with fresh themes that ended up being so much fun to write they’ve spawned entire series.
You have a deadline! I don’t know about you, but I have trouble keeping my butt in the chair without one!
It’s a promotional opportunity! If selected, you’ll be joined by 12-15 other authors for the launch, sharing your audiences and, hopefully, picking up new readers along the way. Having your story in the collection is another chance to be “seen.”
And remember, you retain the rights to your story, so you can republish it for individual sale or give it away to attract subscribers to your newsletter. You might even decide there’s more story to tell and expand it into a novel!
Here’s what I’m looking for…
STRANDED: A BOYS BEHAVING BADLY ANTHOLOGY will include stories that satisfy the reader who craves stories about women who find themselves in extremely challenging circumstances—vulnerable to the elements and/or to their rescuers! But don’t create damsels in distress who don’t have an inner core of resolve to save themselves. Heroines must be strong characters, otherwise, how will they attract and capture the love of a strong alpha hero?
I’m eager to work on my next delectable anthology—this one filled with stories about women who find themselves—STRANDED. Your heroine could be a castaway on a desert island, have her car break down in the mountains, be stranded in the ocean while snorkelling, crash land in the jungle or on an uninhabited planet… Don’t limit your imagination to these ideas! Have fun with the concept.
I’m open to any subgenre of erotic romance you want to write. I’ll accept contemporary, historical, science fiction, or paranormal stories, and I won’t be picky about whether the stories are hetero, LGBT, ménage… Basically, you, the author, can go anywhere your imagination takes you so long as 1) the woman is in jeopardy, and 2) the story is a romance, and 3) you have a bad boy somewhere in the pages! Should you write that LGBT story, consider making the couple’s adversary or helpmate a roguish man—because, hey, I’m looking for men who behave badly.
The anthology will be sold at a low price—my intent is exposure for you and your writing. The more readers reached, the better! You will retain the rights to your story, so that, at a later date, you can republish your stories individually.
I’m seeking hot and inventive stories from authors with unique voices, and above all, I’m looking to be seduced by tales filled with vivid imagery and passion.
Published authors with an established world may use that setting for their original short story.
This is erotic romance, so don’t hold back on the heat. Stories can be vanilla or filled with kink, but don’t miss describing the romantic connection between strong-willed individuals learning to trust and love one another. A deep sensuality should linger in every word. Keep in mind there must be a romantic element with a happy-for-now or happy-ever-after ending. Strong plots, engaging characters, and unique twists are the ultimate goal. Please no reprints. I want original stories.
How to submit: Prepare your 2,500 to 5,500 words story in a double-spaced, Arial, 12 point, black font, Word document (.doc or .docx) OR rich text format (.rtf), with pages numbered. Indent the first line of each paragraph half an inch, and double space (regular double spacing; do not add extra lines between paragraphs or do any other irregular spacing). U.S. grammar (double quotation marks around dialogue, etc.) is required.
In your document at the top left of the first page, include your legal name (and pseudonym, if applicable), mailing address, email address, and a 50-words or less bio, written in the third person, and send to firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are using a pseudonym, please provide your real name and pseudonym and make it clear which one you’d like to be credited as. Authors may submit up to 2 stories. I will respond no later than December 30, 2018 with decisions.
Payment will be $25.00 USD ninety days after publication at the end of that month.
Who am I?
Delilah Devlin is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of erotica and erotic romance. She has published nearly two hundred stories in multiple genres and lengths, and is published by Atria/Strebor, Avon, Berkley, Black Lace, Cleis Press, Ellora’s Cave, Entangled, Grand Central, Harlequin Spice, HarperCollins: Mischief, Kensington, Kindle, Montlake, Penthouse, Running Press, and Samhain Publishing.
Her short stories have appeared in multiple Cleis Press collections, including Lesbian Cowboys, Girl Crush, Fairy Tale Lust, Lesbian Lust, Passion, Lesbian Cops, Dream Lover, Carnal Machines, Best Erotic Romance (2012), Suite Encounters, Girl Fever, Girls Who Score, Duty and Desire, Best Lesbian Romance of 2013, and On Fire. For Cleis Press, she edited Girls Who Bite, She Shifters, Cowboy Lust, Smokin’ Hot Firemen, High Octane Heroes, Cowboy Heat, Hot Highlanders and Wild Warriors and Sex Objects. She also edited Conquests: An Anthology of Smoldering Viking Romance, Rogues: A Boys Behaving Badly Anthology, Blue Collar: A Boys Behaving Badly Anthology, and Pirates: A Boys Behaving Badly Anthology.
Direct any questions you have regarding your story or the submission process to me at email@example.com.
My sister is arriving today around noon—soon! She’s coming for a “sisters’ writing retreat”. Her goal for the next week is to write like her hair’s on fire. I’ve been suffering with vertigo for days, and the nausea is getting to me, but I’ll try to hang in there. I do have several projects that need my attention!
In the meantime, I’m sharing an appropriately-themed puzzle for you play-uhs. Have fun! And remember, if you haven’t read Cochise, why the heck haven’t you? Those who have are loving it! 🙂