Peeking at 2018

2018 is turning out to be an exciting year.  As  you already probably know, Rescuing Annabeth was released in January.  She started out very slow but has taken off in a big way since – skyrocketing to number 3 in Kindle Worlds and almost 2 months later still is in the top 10.  You guys did that for me. YOU.  I haven’t enough words to express my gratitude.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

This is the year of a few firsts for me as well.  In addition to returning to the Meridian Art Walk on April 8, I’ll be trying a few bigger venues also.  I’ve applied to the Mississippi Book Festival in Jackson in August and hope to be at Voodoo Lake Signing in New Orleans in November.  It’s a huge step for me and an uncomfortable one as well.  So grateful for my wonderful family, Robert and Rebecca, for supporting me and making my dreams come true.

Speaking of dreams, 2017 was a big release year for me. In June, I released Protecting Joselyn which did extraordinarily well.  That was followed by Saving Olivia in September and my first journey into collaboration with Defending Demma in the anthology Can’t Buy Me Love.  I also revamped Shattered Dreams  complete with new artwork provided by a very talented young local artist.  Considering I had only put out four books prior to 2017, that was a huge feat and my most successful year to date.

2018 is shaping up to be as busy if not more so.

As mentioned before, Rescuing Annabeth was release in January.  In February, I wrote a novella for another anthology that is as yet, unnamed. The theme is “summer” and will feature stories by several extremely talented authors.  I am honored by be allowed to present with them.  Unlike Defending Demma, this offering will not be connected to my Team Cerberus series. Harmony in the Key of Murder is a complete stand alone but already I can see where there could be spin-offs.  This story is set in my hometown of Meridian, Mississippi.  It centers around a young woman named Harmony who attends college in California but returns home each summer to help her family with their antiques business.  One day, a woman brings in an ornate music box to be repaired.  A few days later, she is murdered in her home.  Enter our hero, a county sheriff investigator.  Hunter is a smoldering hot, alpha male and sets his sights on Harmony.  Unfortunately, he’s not the only one interested in her.  Now Hunter has to solve the murder and protect their budding romance.  It was fun to write and about drove me to distraction because Harmony didn’t want to be just a novella. I hit the dreaded word limit just as the action was starting. Thankfully, the publisher, Inkspell, was extremely understanding and let me fudge a bit. I was able to finish it out in just under 25,000 words and I think it reads well. I’m proud of the story and hope you will like her as much as I do.

Currently, I’m working on the fourth story in my Team Cerberus series. This one will be about Alcide “Cowboy” Montgomery and Veterinarian Miley Ellison.  They will have troubles.  They will have danger, but of course they will have love and a happily ever after.  I don’t have a definite release date yet, but I’m hoping for late spring / early summer.  I’ve learned to not put hard deadlines on myself as I get a little sassy and ignore them.  The story comes as the story comes and I can only force my stubborn muse so much before he says NO MORE. (If you haven’t learned about Rufus, my muse, check out my blog about him Meet Rufus. He is an ornery old cuss, but we have been able to come to a mutual agreement – at least for now.)

I haven’t ever been a planster when I write. I’m more of a pantster.  For those that don’t know what that means – a planster is a writer who plans out their story complete with storyboards, outlines and arcs.  A pantster writes by the seat of their pants – not really planning anything out. I know where I start, I know where I end.. its all the little parts in between that give me heartburn. Because of this, I don’t make huge plans on when to release new stories.  I understand that a lot of authors will know when every new book is coming out months in advance. That amazes me. (For me, it’s almost like a surprise… oh, wow, I’ve finished.  Cool.)  Having said that, though, I am wanting to finish out the Cerberus series this year.  I would like to see Cowboy’s story in May, Finch in August, Railroad in October and Toad bringing up the rear in December.   I’m also wanting to start a new series that I’ve been knocking around in my mind the last few months and another book centered in Mississippi.  It’s obvious that I can’t do all of that  without driving myself nuts in the process so I’ll be happy if I can get six releases this year (counting the two I’ve already finished).  That would be 2 more than last year.  I can do it.

Maybe?

I guess that means I need to get back to it then.  Cowboy’s story is coming along – I won’t say how far I am into it, because it’s not nearly as far as I would like to be at this point.  However, it is coming along.

In the meantime, stay safe.  Stay sane.  And above all stay your wonderful selves.  Until next time …

MelissaSign

 

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