Settling In and Updates

Hello all! Hope you’re having a lovely week. Well the move is over and I’m finally getting back into the swing of things. We closed on the old house the same day as Healing Hunter’s Heart released and everything moved at breakneck speed after that. During the chaos of moving, I had several days in a hotel while waiting for things to move along for the close on the new house. I was prepared with the notebooks and tech I figured I might need, including mobile WiFi Hotspot just in case. Luckily the hotel had free internet access which kept me from feeling completely disconnected. Everything else was in storage. I also had furbaby-who’s-not-so-baby-anymore Olly with me. I was a little worried about how he’d take to life on the road, but he was such a good boy.

In a way having to wait, along with my somewhat limited internet access, helped me focus on writing and getting some work done. Considering I only had to push back one of my titles since the deadline fell just as things were crazy with selling, packing, house hunting, and all that fun stuff, I still managed to make two of my three deadlines. I think I managed pretty good. I was worried moving would wreak havoc on my schedule, but I managed pretty well. I’m still catching up on emails and few odds and ends, but thankfully everything’s settled down, which means I’ve been able to take part in a few events I wasn’t sure I’d be able to manage because of the move.

July 17th & 18th (Friday and Saturday) – I’ll be attending Rainbow Con. Although I won’t be taking part in the panels or the signing, I will be there hanging out and just having fun, so be sure to find me to say hello, chat, or if you’d like a book signed. I’ll also be tagging along on the Big Cat Rescue Trip because I’ve been dying to go and omg, how can I not?! Big kitties!

RT Booklovers Convention 2016 – I’m taking the plunge and attending next year’s RT Booklovers Convention in Las Vegas. I’m super nervous but also very excited! More info on that soon.

Updates and Announcements:

Rise & Fall (THIRDS, Book 4) is finally out on audiobook. Mark Westfield did another fabulous job with the guys. It’s available from Audible.com | Amazon | iTunes | Dreamspinner Press.

Against the Grain (THIRDS, Book 5) is due for release August 3rd. There will be a cover reveal, exclusive excerpts, and a giveaway on July 3rd which is also when pre-orders from Dreamspinner Press will go live. The blog tour is being arranged by Creative Minds Promotions for August 3rd to August 14th. You can add it to your Goodreads shelf here.

Beware of Geeks Bearing Gifts is due for release August 19th. There will be an exclusive cover reveal with excerpt and giveaway over at Joyfully Jay on July 20th which is when pre-orders go live at Dreamspinner Press. The cover reveal will also be part of the GRL blog tour! The release blog tour will be organized by Creative Minds promotions in August. You can add it to your Goodreads shelf here.

Hell & High Water (THIRDS, Book 1) the French language translation is due for release at the end of June, and THIRDS HQ in French will be launching to celebrate!

The Auspicious Troubles of Love series is being translated into French! Stay tuned for a release date on The Auspicious Troubles of Chance French language translation.

The THIRDS series has been been sublicensed for publication by the Italian Publisher Triskell Edizioni! Stay tuned for more on that. There’s more heading your way in foreign language translations, so make sure to check the blog for any announcements regarding those.

Unfortunately the one title that was pushed back due to the move was Catch a Tiger by the Tail (THIRDS, Book 6), but I’m hoping to keep it on track for an early 2016 release.

I’ll be taking part in some fun guest spots over the next few months in celebration of GRL and another con to be revealed soon, along with a few other special events. There are will be some fun THIRDS extras, so stay tuned for those!

Olly enjoying the chaise lounge in his mom's new office.

Olly enjoying the chaise lounge in his mom’s new office.

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Battle of the Sniffles and Update

puppypoxHello all! At the end of last week I was at the Dreamspinner Conference in Portland. Oregon is a long way from Miami for sure. I think the change in weather–I tend to forget everyone else in the country experiences seasons–plus a host of other things–including having gotten back from RainbowCon only three days prior–may have contributed to my coming down with an epic cold/flu/I-don’t-know-what-it-is-but-argh illness. I started flagging Friday night with a sore throat and then it picked up strength a little on Saturday. I didn’t even have coffee at breakfast on Saturday morning. That is the true sign I’m feeling unwell. No coffee. I’m pretty sure there were a few gasps from my fellow authors at my table upon the discovery.

I took plenty of Vitamin C in the hopes of keeping it away until I got home. My bug/virus was very accommodating, penciling me in for a full takeover from Sunday night, the moment I got home. It’s been chicken soup, Vitamin C, liquids, medicine, and vasts amount of (attempted) sleep all week. I managed to get a few bits of work done in between. Last round of edits on Hell & High Water, woo! Done and sent. But before we get into that. The Dreamspinner Author’s Workshop. It. Was. Awesome.

DSPCon200This was my first year attending and my second year with Dreamspinner Press. I have to say that in that time my experience with them has been nothing but fantastic. I enjoyed being there, getting to learn more about the company, how it operates, how it’s doing, all the facts and figures. But mostly, I enjoyed getting to meet the folks who help me bring my books to life. Meeting a lot of the editorial staff who I’m often emailing back and forth, getting to chat with my editors was awesome. I got to meet new people who I’d only chatted to online or through email. I got to hang out with the rest of the Dreamspinner family–my fellow authors.  It was an amazing experience, and I hope I can make it to the workshop every year.

THIRDS logo 500pxNow, updates. Hell & High Water has been moved to an early July release, so about two weeks later than originally estimated. The reason for this is it’s length, book 1 is over 100k as opposed to the rest of the series which runs in from 70-80k. There’s a lot going on in that first book and everyone involved wants it to be as strong a release as it can be. This gives me more time to put together a rockin’ blog tour, a cover reveal, and finish up the website. Blood & Thunder edits should be coming through any day now and A Rose by Any Other Name starts production on May 30th. By then hopefully I’ve had good news on Rack & Ruin. I’m currently working on Vixen’s Valor, North Pole City Tales: Book Three. Lots going on, but I’ll post it as we go. I’m also working on next year’s release schedule, so more on that soon.

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Weekly Update & Fur Baby Pics

Hello all! So I’m a bit behind on Rack & Ruin, THIRDS book 3 but for a good reason. I’ve just had a little bundle of adorableness arrive. His name is Olly and he’s a seven week old pup. The breeder was supposed to have given Olly over at eight weeks but for personal reasons had to give the pups away a week ahead of schedule. He’s tiny. A toy poodle/dachshund mix.

2014-04-04 Olly Sleepings450

Today’s his fourth day with me and he’s settling in nicely, though as you can imagine, pup wants to be with his new mommy at all times and protests to his crate training. He thinks it’s play time all the time and I’m resisting coddling him because I don’t want him to develop bad doggie habits. There’s potty training going on though he seems to be a quick learner and by day two he knew exactly where to go to find his water and food bowls. He answers to his name by bouncing over to you and he’s even scratched at the back door to go outside.

2014-04-04 Olly450

It’s hard to get work done with that little face staring up at you but I’m learning to resist the puppy kryptonite. Hopefully I can catch up this week with major word countage during the day. Olly’s forcing me to be a morning person which is quite a feat considering how often I have to get up in the night to let him out of his crate to go potty. And then of course there’s the hour or so of protesting once I put him back in.

2014-04-04 OllyBby

Okay, on to the update. There’s still time to enter my giveaway over at The Hat Party. Contest ends this Thursday, April 10th at 11:59pm (EST). Just drop by and leave a comment for a chance to win.

On Friday, April 11th is my RainbowCon Blog Tour post over at Joyfully Jay’s and I’m also giving away a swag bag of goodies. So make sure to check out the post and leave a comment.

This week at the Purple Rose Tea House we have guest authors Julie Lynn Hayes and B. Snow with chats on everything from comedy to cats.

Well that’s it for today! There will be a THIRDS update this week.

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Writerly Things & THIRDS Update

Hello all! I know blogging has been a little slow lately, but that’s down to the THIRDS, and the way in which these guys have totally TAKEN OVER MY LIFE. I’ve received first edits for Hell & High Water (Book 1). Blood & Thunder (Book 2) is with my publisher and I hope to hear back soon. Rack & Ruin (Book 3) I’m currently working on, along with Rise & Fall (Book 4).

I’ve set myself some tough deadlines, but I’m really enjoying it. These fellas have crawled under my skin pretty quickly. After the 4 initial books,  there will be side stories with other pairings–the first, second, and third of which I’ve already added to my schedule, but I hope to write more Dex & Sloane, because their relationship should continue to grow beyond the 4 books. I’ve done artwork for the website which will launch as soon as I’m done with that, and have more solid info on Hell & High Water, like blurb and such. I created three logos which are the THIRDS organization logo (below), and the two patches the team wears on their uniforms, one being their squad’s patch: Destructive Delta, and one being their law enforcement patch for their division, New York City. There will be plenty of swag with the logos. I’ll be revealing the other two logos soon.

THIRDS logo 500px

So that’s the THIRDS main logo displaying the organization’s full name, motto, and in the center the representation of the unity between Therians and Humans. The motto itself translates to: With United Powers, which is what the THIRDS is all about: seeking justice for all, no matter the species, through the union of Human and Therian.

If you’re not sure what Therians are, they’re the shifters in the THIRDS series. In this world, shifters are not referred to as such, and instead they’re a different species referred to as Therians– which comes from Therianthropy: the change from human into animal.

For the THIRDS, I wanted to keep it as realistic as possible (for shifters anyway), and so the birth of this species is scientific rather than fantasy. And the THIRDS is an organization that was put in place to enforce the law, seek justice, and protect this new species, leaving Human law enforcement to deal with Human crimes, though since the two species aren’t segregated, it means the THIRDS often have to deal with Human perpetrators if said Human commits a crime against a Therian citizen.

I’ll be going more into the THIRDS, what it is, how they operate soon, but I loved putting this organization together, and it leaves loads of room for all kinds of stories, since there are three departments within the organization: Defense, Recon, and Intel. Each one has a different type of agent working for it, and these agents work in small squads with teams of two where a Human agent and Therian agent are paired up. Although the organization enforces the law, they’re a military organization for the government, so it operates a little different to the Human police force. I’m happy to answer any questions related to the series, though if it’s a spoiler, my answer may be somewhat vague.

Now onto other things. For anyone who doesn’t know, I’ll be attending RainbowCon at the end of April, and taking part in two panels:
Thursday, April 17th 1 PM Marketing 101
Thursday, April 17th 4 – 4.30 PM Author Q&A
Friday, April 18th 3 PM Roundtable Discussion  on Historicals

I have some wonderful folks with me for both these panels, and I’m really looking forward to it. If you’re attending, make sure you say hello! If you’re looking for a detailed schedule of events, you can find it here: http://rainbowconference.org/schedule.aspx

The M/M Romance group’s writing event has arrived, and although I took part in the last two, I’m afraid I won’t be able to this year as it falls during the wrapping up of Rise & Fall, and conflicts with my writing schedule for Vixen’s Valor: Book 3 in the North Pole City Tales. I really want to make the North Pole City Tales a yearly Christmas thing, so I didn’t want to skip this year, especially with quite a few folks looking forward to the next installment. Hopefully I can make the event next year, though I can’t wait for all the great stories that are sure to come out of it this year!

And for those wondering when the heck I’m going to get to Hunter’s book. He’s on my writing schedule for this year, though it will mean the earliest the book will be released is early next year. Hunter’s books is going to be a full length novel since we have quite a few characters, plus a couple of new ones. It’ll be longer than An Intrepid Trip to Love, and I hope to release it through my lovely publisher so hopefully, it’ll be worth the wait. I’m super grateful to everyone and their patience. <3

x Charlie

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In His Corner and Writing Update

In His Corner CCochetHello all! As some of you may have noticed, In His Corner is currently unavailable. Its one year contract with Torquere Press came to an end a few days ago, as my story was part of their Charity Sip Blitz. So what’s going to happen to my little story now? Well, I hope to make it not so little, and get it re-published. Why? Because the original word limit was 8000, and as I was writing it, Jessie and Eli really grew on me–as my fellas have a habit of doing.

I’d done a good deal of research regarding 1920’s boxing, much of which I didn’t really get to use, and I kept thinking about how much more I could do with the story, how it could really benefit from being longer.

While I loved the short story, I only just managed to dip into Eli and Jessie’s personalities, not to mention their history. With Jessie especially, I felt there was a great deal more to him than what I was able to fit in with the original word count. I really want to go more in-depth with him and what he went through when he lost everything, how it wore him down, stripped him of his confidence, and then how everything changed when Eli came back into his life.

Once I wrap up some of the stories I’m working on, I hope to give Eli and Jessie the opportunity to tell their story without a word count limit. I’m thinking novella, but who knows, it may even become full length. For those who enjoyed the short story, don’t worry, none of it will be lost, it will just be incorporated into the new story but with a lot more added in.  Boxing during the 1920s was fascinating, with its legendary figures, celebrities attending matches, and the gangsters and bootleggars of the time trying to muscle in on the action. There was excitement a plenty, and I hope to capture a little bit of that.

On the writing front, Johnnie’s third edits are going back today, so *fingers crossed* next should be the galley. I’ve got some fun stuff to share with you regarding the book as soon as it hits Dreamspinne’s ‘Coming Soon’ page which I hope will be… er coming soon. I imagine Jack’s book will be in soon for first edits as well. I don’t have a release date for Johnnie’s book as of yet, but I’ll be sure to let you all know when I do. I’ll also be posting more about the story soon, so stay tuned!

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Website Shenanigans or OMG What Fresh Hell Is This?

Ah, I remember the good old days when having a website meant coming up with some graphics, text, links, arranging it nicely and letting it do it’s thing. Nowadays it’s not so simple, and if you’re not tech savvy, it can be a nightmare. There’s all kinds of crazy things necessary to maintain a website, keeping it running smoothly, protecting it from vile spambots, and promoting it. If you can afford a snazzy tech to do everything for you, awesome. But if you can’t, well, it’s sink or swim. For those of you who have a wordpress.ord site, you know all about the behind the scenes stuff. For those of you who don’t, there’s all sorts of plug-ins, plug-in updates, wordpress updates, theme updates and at any point any one of those can go wrong and the website you shed blood, sweat, and tears for is suddenly floating belly up like the goldfish in the plastic baggie you won at the fair when you were a kid. It’s enough to drive you barmy. Even so, I stick to wordpress. Aside some of the headaches, it’s still–in my opinion, the easiest to use, and the most flexible.

NW035smallSome of you may have noticed both my sites were offline all of yesterday, this one and the Tea House. I was woken up at 1 a.m. by a phone call from my website host provider Hostgator to notify me by databases had been suspended for hogging up the CPU usage. I didn’t even know what that meant. Now I know it was because my site was bugging out and greedily stealing all food from the other kids and refusing to share, so Hostgator put my babies on the naughty step. Fair enough. Of course, I’ve had the websites since Feb/March, and it’s the first time this spike in usage has happened. I was informed it was down to Google Analytics. Of course it was Google. I wasn’t surprised. Google is a memory gobbler, but I’ve had it for months, so why now is beyond me. Seeing as how Hostgator provides detailed traffic reports, I decided to sacrifice Google Analytics and got rid of it from both sites. Problem solved right? You know where this is going.

Hours and another tech later, still nothing. I was given a list of things to do that would help optimize my websites: update to the latest version of wordpress–done, update my theme–done, get rid of deactivated and unnecessary plug-ins–done, use the hHstgator recommended settings for my WP Cache plug-in–done, got rid of a bunch more stuff–done. That should do it.

Nope.

bitchfaceSome frustrating hours later. Tech number three: Add a Cron job. OMG, WHAT THE HOLY LIVING F@#$! IS A CRON JOB??!! Basically, from what I understood, it makes the pages load faster. Anyway, I followed the instructions and did that. That should do it, right? RIGHT??!! Sam’s expression there on the the right pretty much says it all, and he knows a thing or two about hell. Tech number four was very nice. He sounded cute so my ire was tamed long enough for him to walk me through how to optimize my databases through my CPanel. That should do it. 10 p.m. rolls around and now Charlie’s exhausted, frustrated, and had enough. Call up, ask for a supervisor, a lovely tech on the other end takes notes on the masses amount I changed, expressing her confusion as to why after all that, my databases were still blocked. That made two of us. Finally, at 11 p.m. (two tickets and 13 emails, four techs, one online chat, and two telephone calls later) I was emailed that my account had been unsuspended, but they’d continue to monitor my server.

Obviously I got nothing done yesterday that didn’t involve my blood pressure spiking, stomping around the house, and talking to web techs. I’m not annoyed with Hostgator because they were just doing what’s in their Terms of Sales, but I would have preferred to have been notified of what was happening and how to resolve it before they suspended everything. I shall now forever be living in fear of the ‘database error’ page of doom. At least I learned how to optimize my websites, even if it left me technologically scarred for a good while. Lesson: just because something’s supposed to make your life easier, doesn’t mean it will. Either that or I’m correct in assuming technology hates me. Just ask my printer.

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