12.17.2012

All About Heroes Interview with Jennifer Eaton


Today, my guest is Jennifer Eaton. I met Jennifer through the Still Moments Publishing author group.


First, tell us a little about yourself.  Well, like most writers I have a day job.  I’m an office professional.  After work I put on my mommy hat.  I have three great boys under 12 and a wonderfully supportive husband. Around 9:00 every night I tuck everyone into bed, close myself in my office, and become a writer.

As writers, we often become emotionally attached to our characters. Who is your favorite hero you’ve ever written?  Probably Harris Stanton.  He’s a very tragic hero, a boy with a big heart striving to do the right thing, but being pushed in the wrong direction because of “who” he is.  He is a character in an Si-Fi Fantasy novel I wrote a few years ago.  For now, Harris has been shelved, but I hope to bring him back to life in a year or so.

Have you ever fallen in love with or had a crush on one of your heroes? Tell us about him.  To an extent, I have a soft spot for all of my characters.  A year ago I would have said Harris.  Right now, I am crushing on David, the hero from my current work in progress Fire in the Woods.  He is a wonderfully lost and sweet teenager who has a huge responsibility that he’s not quite sure if he is ready for.

How do you develop your heroes? Do you imagine their personality or their physical appearance first? Do they grow as personalities as you write or do you do a character sketch before you type the first word? For David, I had a picture image in my head before anything.  I knew exactly what he looked like in great detail.  When I started writing him, he was a little “flat” to be honest.  It was somewhere in the second draft where he really started to come alive with emotion and personality. I did do a character sketch for him, but I kind of just let him “happen” within the constraints of his background and current setting.  I’m really pleased with who he’s become.

I like to give my heroes a personality quirk, just so they aren’t too perfect. Have you ever written a quirk for one of your heroes and what was it?  Well let’s flip over to a different “hero”.  Jack in Connect the Dots is a complicated guy, but very real.  He has a temper, and can be easily blinded when he makes a decision.  He’s far from “perfect” but I wanted him that way to keep the story centered and believable.  As far as silly quirks, he has pet names for everyone.  “Slugger” for the female lead in the story, and “Nicky Bomb” for her daughter.

How do you name your hero? I’d love to say that I have this big, complicated algorithm for naming my characters, but that would be a big old fat lie. When I write Science Fiction, I tend to scope through the dictionary and look for interesting words that sound neat, and have a meaning that suits the character.  At the same time though, the names must be easy to remember.  I find it distracting in novels if I can’t remember a character’s name because it is too complicated. 
In Connect the Dots, the name “Jack” just flew out of my fingers as I typed.  I’m not really sure where it came from.  “Jill” followed soon after.  I figured I’d change the names later, but Jack and Jill just seemed so completely right for them.

Who is your favorite hero in books, movies, or television? Oh wow, this is a tough one. In my mind, when I think of hero I think of big and epic, not an everyday person.  I don’t really watch television, and  I can’t think of anyone particular in a book, so I guess I’ll shoot to a movie. 
Recently I saw Thor and just loved it.  The character of Thor was wonderfully portrayed.  He’s this big almighty god, thrown off his pedestal and having to come to grips with being like everyone else.  His reactions to me were very believable. I love the journey he takes that leads him to understanding that he is not the most important thing in the universe.  And he kicks butt, too, which is always fun.  [Grins]

Who is your hero in real life? I had to stop and think this over.  This is a tough question, isn’t it?  As a writer… my hero at the moment is author Claire Gillian.  I read her novel the P.U.R.E. recently, and it was the first novel written in first person that I really enjoyed.  Actually, the voice is what made the novel awesome.  I contacted her, and she agreed to talk about “voice” for a day on my blog. 
A few months after, I decided to give first person a try for myself.  It was hard, and I was convinced I was flubbing it up.  On a hunch, I contacted her and asked her to read the first ten pages.  She was nice enough to do so, and gave me some pointers.  I thought that was really nice of her, and my writing became stronger because of it.  She really encouraged me.  I thought that was great.

 
Tell us about your most recent release and where we can find it. Who is the hero and what do you like about him the most? 


I am lucky enough to have two winter releases coming out this month.  Connect the Dots is part of Still Moments For the Love of Christmas anthology.  The hero, Jack, is a very unlikely romantic lead.  Yes, he is tall handsome with broad shoulders, but he is not the stereotypical perfect dream guy. That’s what I like about Jack… that he has faults and he is normal.  Jack is just the guy in the next cubicle that you overlook everyday… until someone else goes after him and you realize what you missed out on.  [Smiles]
Also just released this month is Last Winter Red in J.Taylor Publishing’s Make Believe anthology.  The Hero in this story is Paul, who is struggling with the grief of losing his wife, and trying to raise a daughter on his own in a Dystopian world.  What I like about Paul is how devoted he is.  He will do anything to protect his daughter, and will even risk his own life to save a friend.  He is another essentially “real” person facing real problems that I think people will be able to identify with.

You can find For the Love of Christmas containing Connect the Dots on Still Moments Publishing’s ebook store, Amazon, and Smashwords.

The Make Believe Anthology containing Last Winter Red is available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and 
J Taylor Publishing.

I really enjoyed having Jennifer as my guest today. You can find her at the following sites.

Twitter @jennifermeaton
Promo Page: jennifereaton.com


11.30.2012

Review Lucky's Charm by Jenn Nixon

Lucky's CharmLucky's Charm by Jenn Nixon
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Felicia has become a contract killer for “the network”. After her mother dies, her father, Luciano, the original Lucky, spends the rest of his life pretending to be dead so he can track down his wife’s killer. When he dies, his best friend pulls Felicia into the network to take his place and continue his quest. It is tough for Felicia to do what she does and be anything close to normal. All of her interpersonal relationships are strained by the weight of her past. I won’t spoil it for other readers, but I will say I didn’t expect the ending.

I knew I was going to enjoy Lucky’s Charm before I was through reading the first chapter. I love stories with strong heroines and Felicia proved to be a very tough and capable, yet complex character. Nothing about her is simple. Her background as a child adopted by a hit man. Taking on her father’s identity in order to infiltrate the network so she can discover who killed her mother. Her personal, more than business, relationship with her handler and her father’s handler. And last but not least, her very sexy romantic relationship with another hit man. No wonder the woman has trust issues!

It’s hard being a hit woman, and tougher to write a hit woman with any level of credibility. It requires a great amount of suspended disbelief to get into a story of this type. Ms. Nixon does a wonderful job of drawing the reader into Lucky’s character. I confess when I first picked up the book, I expected Lucky to be one-dimensional, as most female characters in the action/adventure genre tend to be. Think, Angelina Jolie in Mr. and Mrs. Smith, a movie to which Ms. Nixon gives a nod. The depth Ms. Nixon brought to this premise pleasantly surprised me.


View all my reviews

11.25.2012

Six Sentences About a Horrifying Discovery #SixSunday


This week's six comes from my first full-length novel, Deceptions of the Heart.

Here's the blurb...






Surviving as Jennifer Cristobal isn’t easy for Rhonda Prentiss. Three years ago, a sudden, fatal trauma stripped Rhonda of her middle-class, stay-at-home mom existence. A brand new shock prompts Rhonda’s essence to invade Jennifer’s soul, suppressing the other woman’s memories and replacing them with her own. When Jennifer’s heart transplant surgeon, Dr. Crane, can’t—or won’t—help her understand her unusual body-swapping dilemma, she turns to the only man she can trust. But can she fully trust Jennifer’s husband, Anson? Rhonda’s memory proves faulty—and sugarcoated. Multiple threats from her past shake her fragile hold on mental stability. If one of her enemies succeeds, he will kill Rhonda’s soul… or Jennifer’s body… or both.

Here's the six...





 I panicked, pacing from one end of the porch to the other. Then I saw them. Droplets of someone’s life—a trail of red dots leading off the side of the porch and into the sea oat-studded sand dune.
   I followed the blood without thought—without hesitation—as if someone was pulling me by a rope. I trudged through the heat along an overgrown path, slapping oats aside. The drops stopped at the beach.

Deceptions of the Heart can be purchased at the following links.





11.24.2012

Six Word Saturday



Taking a rest after Black Friday!

Taking it easy today after my daughter and I jumped into the fray for the first time yesterday. We did it for the shopping, for the chaos, for the joy of engaging in an American tradition. But...we'll never do it again!

Today, I'm hopping through the blogosphere and visiting my blog friends. Later, I will cuddle up with my Mac and lay down a few thousand words on my WIP. This is going to be a great day!

For a full report on our Black Friday activities skip on down to my previous blog post at this link.

Then, hop on over to Show My Face to join this fun blog hop!

11.22.2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

My bird in progress!

On this bright, beautiful Thanksgiving Day I have much to be thankful for. I have my life and my liberty. Family, faith, and friends. A husband who loves me. Children who respect me. Sure I have a few problems and there will always be bumps in the highway of life, but today it seems selfish to dwell on what I don't have when there are those who are struggling to survive. In fact, it should seem selfish to dwell on my petty issues any day of the year when I've been blessed with so much. Don't get me wrong. I'm not wealthy or ultra successful. I've just come to a place in my life where I'm content with what I have. That might be the greatest blessing of all. To enjoy getting more from life rather than strive to get more in my life.

Lately, I've come to believe I need to trim the fat from my existence. No, not my from my ample body which could indeed afford to lose a few pounds. But from my busy everyday life. From the clutter around me. This coming year I want to focus on what is real, what is important, what makes life fuller and richer, not just for me but for everyone around me. I've spent too much time spinning my wheels on things that didn't matter in the long run.

Okay, this Thanksgiving, I'm in a thoughtful, sentimental mood. Please forgive me if I sound like a greeting card or the mushy ending to a Hallmark movie.

Here's a short poem I wrote some time ago. I think it fits my mood today.


Live Without Apology

Living is vital
beyond breathing
surviving
struggling
coping

Live
the small things
large things
in-between things

Happiness is fleeting

Joy
fundamental
essential
transcendental

Relish
sweet things
hard things
mundane things

Live
the moment
not forgetting the past
looking to the future
without apology

11.12.2012

All About Heroes Interview with MJ Kane


Today my guest is MJ Kane author of A Heart Not Easily Broken. I met MJ through a group of wonderful new author friends with 5 Prince Publishing.



First, tell us a little about yourself.

I am a stay-at-home mom with an overactive imagination that has found a way to put it to use! I’ve gone from being an avid reader, to a writer. Writing has helped me find myself…becoming a published author has solidified it! I’ve been married to my high school sweet heart for eighteen-years and have four beautiful children, and two dogs. Well, ten if you count the fact my female has just delivered her first litter of puppies, eight beautiful black and white balls of fur. Can’t wait to sell them!

As writers, we often become emotionally attached to our characters. Who is your favorite hero you’ve ever written?

Oh man, that’s a hard question! Since I am writing a series, and only one book has been published so far, it’s hard to tell. I have very soft spots for all of my men (all six of them!) and have outlines started for the following five books in the Butterfly Memoirs Series. So far, readers have only been introduced to Brian Young, the sexy blond haired, blue-eyed bass player in A Heart Not Easily Broken. Since he is the first male character I’ve ever written, I know he will forever hold a soft spot in my heart.

Have you ever fallen in love with or had a crush on one of your heroes? Tell us about him.

Honestly, yes!  I guess it helps that all of them, despite what race they are, have a small facet of my husband in them, as well as research and imagination as to what type of man my heroine needs. As much as I love Brian, Zachariah Givens, has developed a soft spot.  He’s not your typical hero. He’s an introvert, loves his mother, and is a computer wiz. Yet he’s extremely passionate about the one he gives his heart to, and since he’s been hurt, he doesn’t give it freely. He’s exactly the kind of man the heroine needs. You can look for him in the next book in the Butterfly Memoir Series, Jaded, coming March 2013.

How do you develop your heroes? Do you imagine their personality or their physical appearance first? Do they grow as personalities as you write or do you do a character sketch before you type the first word?

I put a lot of time in developing each of my characters.  Once I have established the storyline, I decide exactly what I want my ‘man’ to look like.  My books are romance, yet focus on the development of not only the heroine, but the hero as well. Once ‘she’ has been developed, I look for personality traits that will turn her on and off, because let’s face it, no one wants the ‘perfect’ man. Sometimes rubbing her ‘the wrong way’ can be a good thing! Nobody wants a push over! My men may be willing to give his woman the world, but he will never allow her to put him down. He knows how to handle her even when it pisses her off. I often watch movies and study actor’s movements, voice, attitudes, etc. I get very deep into developing them. At times, it feels as if I’m having an ‘affair’! LOL

I like to give my heroes a personality quirk, just so they aren’t too perfect. Have you ever written a quirk for one of your heroes and what was it?

Not, necessarily a quirk, but they do have flaws, don’t we all? Too perfect makes them unrealistic.  Their flaws come from trust issues, past experiences that led to them being unsure about themselves or the heroine, and having to overcome their ‘macho’ facade for the one they fall in love with.

How do you name your hero?

I research popular names from year they were born. Then, I imagine what it would be like to…ahem…call out that particular name when properly prompted. If it rolls off the tongue, that’s the one! 

Who is your favorite hero in books, movies, or television?

Hmm…right now, from books, Izzy from the Troubleshooters series by Suzanne Brockman, the Black Dagger Brotherhood Vampire, Rhage, from J.R. Wards series, and Ranger, from the Stephanie Plumb novels by Janet Evanovich. Movies,  Aragorn,  from Lord of the Rings (Viggo Mortenson), and TV,  Alec Hardison (Aldes Hodge) from Leverage.

Who is your hero in real life?
My father, Warren Kelly, who was the first African-American Fire Chief in the state of Georgia back in the early 80’s. He died in 1985 when I was ten.

Tell us about your most recent release and where we can find it. Who is the hero and what do you like about him the most?

My debut novel, A Heart Not Easily Broken, book one  of the Butterfly Memoirs, can be found on Amazon and Barnes & Noble for Kindle and Nook as well as paperback. It is also available on iTunes.

The story is an Interracial Romance between Ebony Campbell, who is black, and Brian Young, the white, blond haired, blue-eyed bass player who refuses to take no for an answer. What I love most about him (and fans of the book seem to agree!) is his persistence. He doesn’t let the fact she’s uncomfortable with their racial differences deter him. He keeps after her, whittling down that barrier until he gets what he wants: her heart. He’s also very supportive of her career and never pushes her to give up her dreams to accommodate him or his needs. He’s there for her when she needs him, even when she tries to push him away. And when he screws up, he’s man enough to admit it and beg for her forgiveness.

I can't wait to start reading my copy of A Heart Not Easily Broken.


Here's an excerpt from the book...

Her attention appeared to be on something in her purse as she walked my way, so she hadn’t seen me yet.
She was not dressed as she was Saturday night. Her hair wasn’t flowing over her shoulders, tempting my fingers to get lost in its waves. Her legs were not bare, nor did she wear a skin tight, short dress, showing off shapely calf muscles, as she had the other evening. Instead, she wore a baggy shirt over pants with some kind of printed design, something like standard medical wear. She wore her hair in a ponytail, and her feet were in tennis shoes. She struggled to balance an armful of books of various sizes and a book bag over her shoulder.
Ebony was still sexy as hell.
“I’m glad you haven’t got started yet. My roommate called me at the last minute and told me you were coming. I don’t have any cash on me. Do you take checks or−?” Her voice faltered when she saw me. “Brian? What are you doing here?”
I caught a hint of fire in her eyes and something else. Maybe guilt for not meeting me in VIP?
“I’m here to cut your grass.” I screwed the top back on the gas can, fighting the urge to laugh at the irony of the situation.
Play it cool. I was not about to let her know how disappointed I’d been sitting alone. What happened a few nights ago had nothing to do with the money she was about to put in my pocket.
“I thought you were a musician.”
I pulled goggles and gloves out of the driver’s side door pocket. “I am, but it doesn’t pay the bills just yet. This is my day job.”
Ebony’s eyes traveled to the truck and my cousins before settling back on me.
“This is my business,” I added, watching her thin eyebrows arch.
Since I hadn’t questioned her about the VIP incident, she seemed to relax. The sound of a lawnmower cranking up broke the awkward silence.
“Well, I’ll get out of your way.” She backed away from the truck and headed for her house.
It dawned on me I did not answer her question regarding the form of payment. At least it would give me something to talk about when we were done.
Saturday night, Ebony disappeared like Cinderella, without leaving a hint of a glass slipper. Now, barely two days later, I found where she lived. What were the chances? This was fate.
I took the opportunity to appreciate every inch of her hidden under baggy clothes. The image of her in the black form-fitting dress revealing every curvy inch of her body had haunted my dreams.
Outside the club, in natural light, Ebony did not disappoint. Her almond shaped eyes were a rich shade of brown, dark and mysterious. She wore no makeup on her caramel skin, and her lips were naked, with no hint of gloss.
I chuckled when she finally got her front door unlocked. It appeared she’d run into some trouble with her key. Flustered perhaps?
I hoped so. With a little luck, I just might have a chance to get her to talk to me about more than grass.

You can purchase A Heart Not Easily Broken at the following links:


You find MJ on the internet at the following links:







11.04.2012

Six Sentences About a Nightgown and a Scar #SixSunday








This week's six comes from my recent release from Still Moments Publishing.


Here's the blurb:

What would you do if one morning you awoke in someone else’s body?

Surviving as Jennifer Cristobal isn’t easy for Rhonda Prentiss. Three years ago, a sudden, fatal trauma stripped Rhonda of her middle-class, stay-at-home mom existence. A brand new shock prompts Rhonda’s essence to invade Jennifer’s soul, suppressing the other woman’s memories and replacing them with her own. When Jennifer’s heart transplant surgeon, Dr. Crane, can’t—or won’t—help her understand her unusual body-swapping dilemma, she turns to the only man she can trust. But can she fully trust Jennifer’s husband, Anson? Rhonda’s memory proves faulty—and sugarcoated. Multiple threats from her past shake her fragile hold on mental stability. If one of her enemies succeeds, he will kill Rhonda’s soul… or Jennifer’s body… or both.

Here's the six...


Hysteria insinuated its warped fingers into the convoluted whorls and ridges of my psyche. Tears welled in the corners of my eyes, but I swiped them away. I clawed at the flimsy nightgown that threatened to slip from my shoulders as if it was eating my skin, pulled the top over my head and threw the offending garment on the floor, leaving my upper body exposed. My eyes traveled down my torso. A rough trail dissected the middle of my chest, right between the ribs. I stared at the oddity, fascinated, horrified, and perplexed. 

Deceptions of the Heart is available to purchase at the following links:



10.29.2012

Confessions of a Pantser


Every story begins with inspiration. Some little bit of something catches the eye or sparks the imagination. The writer overhears a conversation in a Chili’s in the Dallas-Fort Worth airport that starts the thought processes rolling. There is a hill in northwest Arkansas that has an abandoned house just sitting up there on top of it, buffeted by the wind, waiting for someone to write a ghost story with the dilapidated old thing as the setting. Then a news story catches her attention, and she wonders why in the world that guy did that thing with the sharpie that he did. And off the writer goes with a few what if questions like… What if someone used a major catastrophe like a hurricane or a bombing as a perfect opportunity to disappear? Next thing you know, she’s tapping out the first few paragraphs of a brand new story.

Start with a spark that creates a great setting, an inspired character, or a fabulous opening scene, then add a hero, a heroine, and an antagonist, and don’t forget a major conflict and a nail-biting life or death pivotal the-book-hinges-on-this-one-moment scene, and you’ve got the basic ingredients for romantic suspense.

In between the opening hook and the final nail biter scene, there is a lot of territory to cover, and it is in that middle as yet undefined land where I confess I am a certified pantser. I don’t know where my story’s going in the middle until I write it. Oftentimes, my characters will decided what happens in the in-betweens. For instance, just last week my hero’s ex-girlfriend was murdered. Did my hero kill her, you ask? No, of course not. Heroes don’t murder their ex-girlfriend’s, but he certainly didn’t see the crisis coming and neither did I!

So I’m going to let my imagination run away with me for a moment. Bear with me. Let me set up the situation for you. I’m going to put my hero, my heroine, and my antagonist in a dark room and just sort of go from there. Okay, I’ll give them a dim 20 watt light bulb dangling from the ceiling, just so they won’t be scared of the dark. I’ll name my hero Unnamed, my heroine Undefined, and my antagonist Unwritten.

And action…

Unnamed: Man, it’s dark in here. Why doesn’t she put a window in this place?

Undefined: I don’t know.

Unnamed: Oops, I forgot. You don’t have an opinion, because she hasn’t given you a personality yet. She should at least give you some...she should make you friendly or…something.

Bubbly: Oh, right! Maybe she hasn’t given me a personality yet because she’s busy or she’s thinking about sorting her underwear drawer or the cat barfed up tuna or her baby is squalling…or wow why is it so dark in here? And why is everything black? And who’s that guy over there that doesn’t say anything? He’s kind of scary. (Giggles.)

Unnamed: Oh, no.

Miss Optimistic (Name changed from Bubbly/Undefined.): What? What’s wrong? I can tell there’s something wrong, but cheer up. Everything is going to be fine. We have this nice room, and I know she’s going to give us a window soon. Ah, look over there! She did it! She did it!

Unnamed: Yep, she made you a ding-a-ling.

Grouchy (Another name change for Miss Optimistic/Bubbly/Undefined.): What’s that supposed to mean? I’m not going to talk to you. And… (Stares mean at Unwritten.) Stop staring at me.

Unnamed: He can’t respond. She hasn’t written him yet. And you don’t have to get all huffy.

Grouchy: Oh, so now you’re an expert on how she writes, Mr…Mr…What is your name?

Unnamed: I don’t know.

Grouchy: Oh, that’s right, she hasn’t named you yet. She should call you Ralph.

Ralph (Name changed from Unnamed.): I don’t like the name Ralph. I’d rather be Chad.

Snarky (And yet another name change for Grouchy/Miss Optimistic/Bubbly/Undefined.): You would like the name Chad! (Examines fingernails as if she doesn’t care when she really does.) She should do something about the stone statue over there. She should at least give him a scowl.

Tank (Name changed from Unwritten.): (No dialogue only rumbling noises like a tank.)

Chad (Name changed from Ralph/Unnamed): (Glances around nervously at the black walls.) We need a door so we can get away from him.

(Door appears as if by magic.)

Smiley: (Grabs Tank’s upper arm.) Come on, Handsome, I’d rather leave with you. (Throws snotty smirk over shoulder at Chad as Tank, who used to be Unwritten, opens the door for her.) You’re much better looking than Mr. Bossy.

Handsome (Name changed from Tank/Unwritten): You look lovely today, Smiley.

Mr. Bossy (Name changed from Chad/Ralph/Undefined): Hey, come back here!

…and scene.

Who knew the heroine would leave with the antagonist? Did you? I didn’t.

10.28.2012

Six Sentences About Breathless Encounters #SixSunday


This week's six comes from my recent release from Still Moments Publishing.


Here's the blurb:


What would you do if one morning you awoke in someone else’s body?

Surviving as Jennifer Cristobal isn’t easy for Rhonda Prentiss. Three years ago, a sudden, fatal trauma stripped Rhonda of her middle-class, stay-at-home mom existence. A brand new shock prompts Rhonda’s essence to invade Jennifer’s soul, suppressing the other woman’s memories and replacing them with her own. When Jennifer’s heart transplant surgeon, Dr. Crane, can’t—or won’t—help her understand her unusual body-swapping dilemma, she turns to the only man she can trust. But can she fully trust Jennifer’s husband, Anson? Rhonda’s memory proves faulty—and sugarcoated. Multiple threats from her past shake her fragile hold on mental stability. If one of her enemies succeeds, he will kill Rhonda’s soul… or Jennifer’s body… or both.

And here's the six sentences:


He hovered near the bed as I feigned sleep. Poised over me for a horribly long time, he never uttered a word. I stifled a flinch when he brushed the hair from my face. The gentle glide of his fingertips across my cheek sent a shock racing through my limbs. He dragged in a deep, ragged breath and then lifted a suit jacket from a chair. After he shut the door behind him with a near silent swoosh, I lowered the bedcovers from my chin and released the breath I’d been holding.

Deceptions of the Heart can be purchased at the following links:

 Create Space Print edition
Amazon Kindle edition
Amazon Print edition
Smash Words eBook edition
Still Moments Publishing eBook edition

10.15.2012

Conversations With My Muse (Accounting is Boring Edition) - 0006





Image in Public Domain as a faithful reproduction
of a work of art in the Public Domain.
So I’m in my office at work trying to figure out which one of our members’ dues hasn’t been remitted to national yet when my muse interrupts my train of thought.


Muse: Pssst…Writer person….

Me: * Doesn’t bother to hide irritation. * What?

Muse: So I was thinking—

Me: Not now. Can’t you see I’m busy? I have a lot of work to do.

Muse: But listen to this—

Me: Hold up! You’ve been silent for days, weeks no less, and you want to whisper in my ear now?

Muse: You need to work on your writing, girl. You’ve been slacking. And besides, accounting is boring! So there was this the guy and this girl and she’s been dead for three years, but she wakes up in this other woman’s body—”

Me: Wrote it already.

Muse: What?

Me: Released that story last month. Don’t you have anything better?

Muse: So there was this guy, this gal, and this ghost—

Me: Released that yesterday. You’ve been off your game lately.

Muse: You’ve been ignoring me.

Me: I’ve been working—

Muse: Working smirking. Accounting is sooo boring.

Me: Well, yeah. Accounting is boring. You said that already. Why do you think I write? I gotta have some excitement in my otherwise mundane life, don’t I? And how do you think I’m able to support your habit?

Muse: Point taken…. Hey, you make me sound like an addict or something.

Me: From your own subtle whisper to my ear.

Muse: * Huffs * Well then, I can tell you this later.

Me: Oh, no. You’ve already interrupted me, so what is it?

Muse: Never mind. Go back to your numbers and your calculator and your Excel spreadsheets and your QuickBooks and your—

Me: * Leaning back in my chair and looking all smug * You sound bitter.

* Silence *

Me: Muse?

* More silence *

Me: Well, you don’t have to be that way about it!

Muse: So there’s this guy and this gal and she has problems with other people’s memories—

Me: Current work in progress. If you’re going to harass me, you need to do better than that.

Muse: So if a man wanted to disappear, what better time to do it than after a catastrophe.

Me: Okay, I’m listening.

Muse: So there’s this woman who lost her husband in 911. She goes on vacation and…


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