(Not That Kind of) Discipline

So my loving husband looks at me and says, “you need discipline.”

I, of course, put down the laptop and, in my most lascivious tone, invite him to come discipline me.

“No, no,” he replies. “You need discipline as a writer.”

“Like with a quill pen?” I ask.

“No, like with metrics.”

I knew immediately that I would prefer the Sleeping Beauty style discipline.

He has a point though. The boring, he’s-right-about-this kind of point. He even has examples. For instance, Cherie Priest.

I love Cherie Priest. Her writing is strong, and her range is practically unlimited. There’s Boneshaker and the rest of the Clockwork Century series, Pacific Northwest steampunk. For a more modern take, there’s Bloodshot and Hellbent, the story of Raylene Pendle, a high tech vampire thief living something of a noir life. There are so many more, including the top of my reading list, her latest, Maplecroft: The Borden Dispatches, Lizzie Borden versus Lovecraftian horrors. Genius.

But it’s not her admirable talent as a writer that hubby pointed out. It’s her discipline. (No, Cherie’s not that kind of girl.) It’s the structured approach she takes to writing. She uses her blog as a creative outlet and as a progress indicator. Check out her blog to see what I’m talking about. Or better yet, check out this blog as I use (swear!) the tools hubby sets up for me.

Maybe if I’m good, I’ll finally get some discipline.

A Taste of Jade

Jade cover

Jade is available now for Kindle and Nook! So just to get you in the mood, here’s a little taste of what you have to look forward to.

I was expecting him to live in one of the renovated warehouse condos or a trendy loft, but we drove past all of those, and he pulled us up to the garage of a modern dream house. If he was an attorney, he was an attorney who was doing well. This was going to be fun.

He led me upstairs through an expensively, if sparsely, furnished living room and past a gleaming stainless steel kitchen to the patio that had the view, just as promised. He left me there and went back inside, returning barefoot with wine glasses and a bottle of deep, dark red. Music was playing softly in the background. He’d done this before; he was smooth. Now he took my hand. His was colder than mine.

“You’re so beautiful.”

And here we go.

“You’re so full of shit.”

“What?”

“You bring me back to your place because you want to get laid, so now you’ve got the wine and the music, and you’re going to try to flatter me into thinking it was my idea to get in bed with you by feeding me lines like I’m the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen and how you’ve never met anyone like me and you just feel this connection to me. You’re full of shit.” Jane cannot believe we just said that, not that she disagreed.

He paused. This was obviously a new one for him. “Well, you are beautiful, and I have most definitely never met anyone like you,” he said, with a sardonic grin. “They aren’t just lines. But, if I was so transparent, why are you here?”

“Maybe I just want to skip all the lines and get to the good part,” I said, and pulled him into a nice long kiss. I think Jane may have fainted in shock.

I had never come so quickly. To be perfectly honest, poor Jane had never come with a man at all. Poor Jane had never even imagined that something like this could exist. I was riding a crest of passion, my body tensing, begging him to fuck me harder, faster, to take me over the edge to release, and he did, and the whole world exploded, and then I was back.

And goddamn it all to hell, he was biting my neck. Wouldn’t you know it? My dream lover was a fucking vampire!

Inspiration

So, what’s your inspiration?

That’s the question you’re always asked when you write fiction. And it’s not always an easy one to answer. Inspiration comes from a lot of different sources–from your imagination, from media, from the people around you, from your own experiences.

For Jade, inspiration came from inside me. At it’s core, Jade is about a woman who wants to change her life. I think that’s something we can all identify with to some degree, whether it’s just wanting to lose a few pounds or cover up some new grey hairs or to make that career change we’ve been dreaming about for years.

There’s a lot of passion in Jade. My inspiration for that? Well, let’s just say that I have a wonderfully supportive husband who enjoys my research. I don’t write scenes that don’t work in real life.

Some bad things happen in Jade. Where does that come from? Well, bad things happen in the world all the time. That tends to percolate in my brain. Not all of my characters are good people, even when they aren’t vampires. I wrote them doing the things that they would do.

Ah, yes. Vampires. So where does the paranormal aspect come from? That’s where imagination kicks in. My vampires inhabit a world of my making. They adhere to rules that I devised. Am I influenced by other writers? Of course I am! Any writer who denies that source of inspiration is just flat out lying. But you’ll find the vampires in Jade to be something different than what you’re used to reading about. And you’ll learn more about them as the Bloodlines series progresses. And I promise, no one sparkles.

Speaking of the Bloodlines series, I’m currently working on Book 3: Ruby. Book 2: Heartbeat is being edited.