What’s It All About, Alfie?

944284_spekulator puzzleI’m typing away at Hunter’s story, thinking about deadlines and the many other things on my to-do list, one of which is my next blog post, and I sigh. The familiar question of what I should blog about enters my mind, and I sit back wondering why I have so much trouble coming up with posts, for my own blog no less. I’m a writer, right? I don’t have trouble flapping my gums in person. When I’m with friends there’s no concern over what I say because they know me. They won’t be offended if I give my opinion, if I swear, or go into one of my caffeine-induced hyper freak-outs. (I seriously believe I must have been a cat in a former life because of my random hyper weirdouts).  Anyway, so I start to mull this over.

The thing is, I’m pretty laid back and when it comes to folks, I try real hard to remain patient. I care, and I do my best to help where I can. I was raised to be polite and respectful, to try and be understanding, to offer my opinions and not ram them down someone else’s throat. Agreeing to disagree isn’t the end of everything. I learned people are different. I learned the difference between an opinion and a personal attack. If I don’t have something nice to say about someone, I’ve learned to keep it to myself, because I don’t like making people feel bad. But that’s me, and I don’t expect someone else to be like me. I also don’t expect someone else to tell me I’m wrong for being me. I believe myself to be a good person, but I  have faults like anyone else.

grrSince becoming a published author, I’ve been inundated with contradictions. Get involved, don’t get involved. Folks want to know who you are, folks don’t want to know about your life,  you should do this, you shouldn’t do this, don’t talk about this, behave this way, don’t behave this way. The idea is that once you’re in the public eye, you have a certain obligation to others, more so than to yourself. Others can express what they like about you and your work, but  you’re not entitled a response, unless it’s in agreement or you end up on someone’s shit-list. For every person with a constructive or kind word, there are two who are nasty and petty. Make one wrong move and they’ll make you pay. So where does that leave a newbie like me, aside cowering in the corner?

Screw cowering, and screw the corner. No one puts Baby in the corner. Yeah, I went there.

Should I be scared to express myself? Should I worry what I write on my own writing platform? That’s pretty much what I concluded. In the time I’ve been published, I’ve seen a lot of wild stuff, enough to make me hesitant on what keys my fingers press. But you know what? I’m an adult. I know how to behave in public. I wouldn’t say anything to someone online that I wouldn’t say to their face, because on the other side of every screen is a real person with real emotions, problems, heartaches, fantasies, dreams, and everything else I have. Anonymity does not equal impunity from being a decent human being.  If someone wants to act like an ass, chances are they’ll be called on it.

Dean hugzI might be writing into the vast wilderness of nothing, I might not. All I know, is I don’t do well with being boxed in or being told what to do. I’m not the easiest person to get on with when I’m riled up, and when folks ask how much of me is in my characters, well, a little more than you think. I love what I do, I love meeting people, love talking to them, I write for myself and for others. If they love what I do, awesome, if they don’t, sorry it’s not your cup of tea. I’ll try my hardest to be the best I can be. There’s a balance that needs to be struck, but I sure as hell won’t find it by trying to please everyone, because we all know that’s a futile endeavor. And how boring would the world be if we all liked or disliked the same exact things?

So aside the usual author posts on writing, works in progress, updates, and promotions, you’ll find posts on random thoughts and ideas, some personal some not, maybe some product reviews. I just got me a Nescafe Dolce Gusto Picolo machine but maybe that’s a post for another day. You might want to get to know me better, you might run for the hills. You might agree, you might not. Feel free to join in and give your two cents or just lurk. Either way, welcome to my online home. There’s a comfy couch and plenty of coffee.  Spambots get off my lawn! Everyone else is welcome.

x Charlie

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Wrapping up my Love Has No Boundaries story and more!

workinprogressOkay, so last night, I finished my Love Has No Boundaries story and sent it off to my beta! It came in at 33,699 words. I knew it was going to be novella length, and figured it would be about the same size as my Love is Always Write story Roses in the Devil’s Garden. Yeah, no. Trip is a mouthy little so-and-so, as you may have deduced from the little snippets I’ve been posting. I have to say though, I have had so much fun writing Trip and the Devil Dogs. Hopefully everyone else will love them as much as I do. This will be my first non-historical. Though technically, Mending Noel was my first non-historical, but it’s a Christmas Story, and it’s about elves. I’ve also been collecting fun little tid-bits from the story to share once the story is released by the MM Romance Group.

Trip’s story is about Husky shifters in an urban fantasy setting. I don’t know how much I can give away. Anyway, it has a title and that title may or may not have a Book #1 attached to it. *Le gasp!* Okay, I don’t know why I gasped in French there, but yes, I am already working on the second story. I’m hoping against hope that I can finish it by the end of the month, so if the publisher contracts it, folks won’t have to wait so long, like they’ve had to do with my other series. The second book should come in at around the same length. I’m also working on Johnnie’s story (the boy has been getting impatient), and then Jack’s story. Yep, Jack and Rudy are getting their own Christmas story. The moment I’d finished Mending Noel I knew I wanted to have a story with the grumpy, sexy, dangerous Jack Frost and his equally sexy pilot. So stay tuned for more on that.

After that, I’ve got a four book contemporary shifter series I’m working on. It’s a little different from Trip’s story because it’s not fantasy. The shifters aren’t related to mythical beings in any way, but I’m hoping the idea is original and the that folks will fall in love with the characters. I’ve been spending a lot of time on these folks and I really want this series to be pretty epic. I mean these guys will be getting their own sub-domain, that’s how excited I am about them. I’ve already planned out all four books and know what’s happening in them, I just need to write them. I’m hoping to get the first two started after Jack’s story is done. Then it’ll be a matter of getting all four scheduled and released next year, all full length novels. There will be merchandise and everything. I’ve been slowly working on these guys for about two years now, and that’s just the characters, the timeline, and the backstory, so yeah, a lot is going into this.

There you have it. A run down of what’s to come for the time being. Plus there’s all those other stories waiting. Soon, my pretties, soon. Now back to writing!

x Charlie

 

 

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Love Has No Boundaries – Teaser

Here’s a little teaser from my LHNB story. Enjoy!

♥♥♥

“It went under the bed,” Robbie murmured, pointing at the bed across the room—which had yet to be made at six in the evening. Leaving that gripe for after he corralled their unwanted arachnid guest, Trip weaved through the valley of sharp, angular toys and made it to the bed unscathed. He got down on his knees and lifted the comforter hanging off the side.

“For crying out loud, Robbie, there’s more stuff under your bed than out here. Did you leave anything in the closet? I wouldn’t be surprised if there was a nest under here.” Robbie let out a whimper and Trip rolled his eyes, glancing over at the pup and trying not to laugh at his little worried face.  “Relax, there’s no nest.” He shifted his gaze back under the bed and saw something move. “Aha! I’ve got you now you little sucker. I don’t know what you’re so scared of, Robbie, it’s not that big.”

“It is so! It’s like one of those facehuggers from Aliens. What if I’m asleep and it jumps on my face and tries to lay eggs in my tummy and then it bursts from my chest all argh!” Robbie dramatically threw himself back against his desk’s chair, his tongue poking out one side of his mouth as he made gurgling noises, his body twitching.

“That’s the last time I let you stay up to watch a Sci-fi marathon.” The movement stopped. Taking the cardboard, Trip slowly slipped it under the bed toward the black lump, only to poke it and realize it was a balled up sock. What the hell? Something shifted beside it—something much bigger. It turned and darted right for him.

“Holy fudge!” Trip shot away from the bed, managing to curb the copious amounts of colorful swear words ready to roll off his tongue. Scrambling, he climbed onto the bed in a manner which could only be described as astoundingly undignified, losing one of his socks in the process. Getting to his feet, he wobbled on the bed a moment before finding his balance, his plastic container out in front of him like a shield and the piece of cardboard brandished in his right hand like a sword. He was ready for battle.

“There it is, dad!” Robbie squealed and Trip gave a start.

“Where?”

Robbie frantically pointed at the huge hairy black spot in the middle of the blue carpet. “There!”

“Oh my Gods,” Trip gagged. “What is that? That is the most revolting thing I have ever seen.”

“What about when grandpa Hagan lost his swim trunks at the lake?”

“You’re right. This is the second most revolting thing I have ever seen.”

Robbie swiped a book off his desk, ready to hurl it.

“Hey, don’t throw your math book.”

Dropping his math book on the desk, Robbie swapped it for Trip’s tablet.

“Throw the math book! Throw the math book!”

Robbie obliged, picking up the hefty hardback and chucking it across the room. It landed like a tee-pee over the spider. They held their breaths. Pages ruffled and seconds later the spider leisurely crawled out. “It’s still alive, dad! What do we do?”

“What is that thing made of? All right, that’s it. Ain’t no eight legged creep gonna get the best of Tristan Hagan.”

“Go, dad!’ Robbie cheered him on.

Trip inched closer to the foot of the bed when the beast turned toward him and leapt forward. “Holy shit, it jumps!” He scrambled back until his back hit the wall behind him.

“You said a curse word,” Robbie admonished, wagging a finger at him.

“Yeah, I know, I’m sorry. But, did you see that?” Trip’s smart phone rang in his pocket and he shuffled his weapons into his left hand to grab it, pressing it against his ear. “Brook?”

“Trip? What’s wrong?”

“Put her on speaker phone,” Robbie demanded. “Mom! Mom! There’s a huge spider in my room and it looks like one of the facehuggers from Aliens!”

“What have we told you about watching those Sci-fi marathons?”

“You sound like dad. Why are you fighting with me when you should be fighting the Aliens?”

“It’s a spider,” Trip clarified.

“A mutant spider that probably has mutant babies,” Robbie added.

Brook sighed. “He gets that from you, you know.”

“No, but seriously, Brook, the thing is fugly.”

“No one says fugly anymore.”

“I just did.”

“Yeah, well, you’re a nerd.”

“Aw, thanks, babe. I gotta go now. Got aliens to kill. Don’t worry, if I end up an incubator for mutant spider babies, I’ll remember the good times we had.” When Brook next spoke, he could hear the smile in her voice.

“Do you want me to send Deacon over? He’ll be home in about fifteen minutes.”

“Hm, do I want to emasculate myself further by having my ex-wife’s husband come kill a spider for me?”

“Dad, it’s moving again!”

“Fifteen minutes you say? That’ll work for me. He can let himself in. Tell him to bring his shovel. And a blowtorch.”

♥♥♥

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Author Madison Parker over at the Tea House talking about a different kind of bullying.

teahouseFavicon128Madison Parker has stopped by the Purple Rose Tea House on her blog tour for Play Me, I’m Yours with a heartfelt post that relates to events in her YA book: bullying within the LGBT community. It’s something we don’t tend to hear about as often, but is still prevalent nonetheless. Drop by the Tea House to read about the Vloggers speaking out within the community, and watch a video hosted by an insightful young man.

To celebrate her release, Madison is also hosting a giveaway. Check out the bottom of her post for details on how to enter.

x Charlie

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