NaNoWriMo Winner!

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Finished the last thousand words or so on my NaNoWriMo writing for the month and ended up at 50,814. I ran out of steam this last week, but I finished the darn thing! Now I’m so ready to start editing and submitting some stories.

Just to give you a little update on everything.

Dust Devils was one of the NaNoWriMo efforts for this year and the rough draft is finished. It’s a retelling of Cinderella in a contemporary western setting. Roping, riding and steer wrestling, I hope all that sets your spurs to jingling. Decadent Publishing liked my pitch for this one so hopefully they’ll like the finished story, too.

Camouflage is the other rough draft I finished during NaNoWriMo. Nash is a rent boy living in Atlanta who if he were a cat would be on life number nine. Luke isn’t doing much better after being dumped after an affair with a married man. The two are a mess and Luke’s best friend Christina is there to give her opinion to both of them.

Obsidian Sun is my NaNoWriMo effort from last year. I’m planning one more pass with editing and then it goes. It’s a fantasy novel in a iron age setting with a cool magic system based on weaving and spinning. I’m hoping to send it out before the end of the year. I like it, so I’m hopeful about it.

I should be getting the first round of edits for Razor shortly. It is under contract as part of Decadent Publishing’s Beyond Fairytales collection (part of the same collection as Dust Devils). This is a contemporary paranormal that’s a retelling of “Little Folk” from Brother’s Grimm.

Then of course Drawing the Devil will be released on Feb 5th. The early reviews are mostly positive so I have high hopes. Just to give you a little more visuals for the novel, I’ve created a Pinterest board for it. Hope you enjoy!

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Double Trouble: Chapter 21

Wednesday Briefs

A furious Trent goes to pick up the kids. For more free flash reading check out the list of authors at the bottom of this post.


Chapter 21

Trent’s temper surged as Mrs. Anderson closed the door and he watched through the window as she moved back into the room of kids. She glanced back once, but then shifted her gaze nervously. Trent set his jaw and turned back to Josh. “My child is not staying in that woman’s classroom. I’m going to talk to the principal right now and fix this.”

He started, only to be pulled to a stop by Josh. He spun, ready to explode with anger. Before he could say anything, Josh held up a hand. “Not now. We don’t really know anything. Let’s wait and see what happens. Okay?”

Trent’s anger flared, but he fought it down, knowing Josh was calmer than he was in these situations. “Don’t like it. But okay.”

Josh led the way back to their pickup. Trent climbed in on the passenger side and sat with his arms crossed. By the time they arrived back at the ranch, his blood was boiling with anger and he knew he couldn’t be around anyone, not even Josh. The moment they rolled to a stop he was out of the pickup and almost sprinted toward the barn. “I’ve gotta fix some of that fence around the north one eighty.”

“You need any help?”

“No, probably better for me to put off some pissed off.” He knew Josh would understand, and he reminded himself how lucky he was. But he was soon zipping through the pasture on the gator, its backend piled with fencing supplies, including a pair of post hole diggers. He pulled up to the first stretch of fence, walked down the small section and started pulling out what posts he needed from the vehicle. A few minutes later he was embroiled in repairing this section of fence like his life depended on it.

His shirt and the waste of his pants were soaked with sweat and he was wearing out when he sensed someone watching him. He glanced around to find Josh sitting on his horse.

“What are you doing? I’m not going to hurt anyone, yet.”

“We need to pickup the kids in an hour. I thought you might like to clean up so you can go with me.”

Trent started tossing tools back into the all-terrain vehicle. “Just let me change clothes and I’ll be ready. Won’t take me but a minute.”

Josh started chuckling. “Oh hell no. You’ve moved way past sweaty and sexy and right into he fucking stinks. You’re not getting in the truck with me smelling like you do.”

Trent threw the last few tools into the gator with more force. His anger started to build again. “I’ll meet you at the house. It won’t take long to clean up.”

A short time later found them headed down the same roads as they used this morning to retrieve their children. Trent spent the entire trip struggling to keep his anger from building any worse. He thought he was doing a good job of keeping his feeling under wraps, when Josh grabbed his shoulder and brought them to a halt. “You have to keep it together. The kids will be watching, and not just ours. We don’t want to give anyone ammunition.”

Trent tensed, but nodded as they continued into the building. They walked to the now open door to find Danny playing with a couple of other boys. One looked every bit as western as Danny, but the other was the preppiest looking kindergartner Trent had ever seen. But the outfits didn’t matter as the three of them built a whole world with wooden blocks.

Mrs. Anderson saw them and smiled as if nothing was wrong. She made her way to the pair, chatting with the kids as she did. Once she was close enough she smiled. “Danny did just fine. The three of them get along great. He’s such an inquisitive little boy, too.”

“Like how to hate gay people?”

“Trent!”

Trent prepared to rip into this woman when he heard Sammy calling to them. “Daddy! Da! Meet my new friend. Her name is Missy.”

They turned to see Sammy racing toward them with another little girl in tow. All three adults stood silent as the children approached. Trent dropped to Sammy’s height and smiled at his daughter and her friend. “It’s really nice to meet you Missy. I’m glad you and Sammy are enjoying playing together.”

“Daddy, guess what!”

Trent turned to Sammy. “What’s that sweetie?”

“Missy has two mommies like I have two daddies.”

Trent got a sinking feeling in his stomach. “Oh really?”

Missy and Sonny dropped hands as the little blond girl ran to Danny’s teacher. Mrs. Anderson smiled down at her. “How was school, Missy?”

“Good, Momma, very good.”


 

If you’d like to see a snippet from the other Wednesday Briefs authors you can go to the groups website. Or click on the name listed below to go directly to the story.

Double Trouble: Chapter 20

Wednesday Briefs

First day of school for the twins. For more free flash reading check out the list of authors at the bottom of this post.


Chapter 20

“I do not want to go to that place!” Danny said.

Trent tried to keep calm. “Danny, you have to go. It’ll be fun. You’ll learn stuff and find new friends.”

“Will not be fun. I know it won’t be fun. Everything that’s fun is here at home.”

“And everything will still be here in a few hours. Then you can have fun stuff at home, and fun stuff at school.”

Danny wiped a tear of frustration from his eye. “Did you go to school? Was it fun?”

“Da and I both went to school. Da went to more school than I did. We both learned a lot.”

Danny stopped squirming and looked at Trent. “But did you have fun?”

Trent thought back on his school days, and cringed. He studied Danny for a few moments as he tried to think of how to tell him the truth without making things worse. “Some days were fun. Especially when I was your age. But some people don’t like anyone who’s different. Da and I are different, so sometimes they were mean.”

“I’m a girl. Everybody is a boy here. Are people not going to like me because I’m a girl?

Trent turned to find Sammy and Josh standing at the door. He shifted his gaze to Josh as he tried to work out an answer. “You can jump in here anytime you’d like.”

“You’re doing fine. I’m just listening.”

“Great. We’re gonna chat later.” He shifted his attention back to Sammy. “Come here, sweetie. Both of you.”

Trent sat on the bed and let the twins climb onto his knees. “Okay, first. You’re both going to have a great time. You are good kids and other kids will want to play with you too. But some people won’t like you, and usually it’s for stuff you can’t even control, like the color of your skin, or who you fall in love with.”

“Like you and Da? How you explained some people will be curious because we have two dads?”

“That’s right. But some people have odd ideas about what’s right and what’s wrong…and it kind of rots their brains.”

“Trent…”

Trent jerked his head up to see Josh cocking an eyebrow. “Hey, you know I’m right.”

“Trent.”

“Yeah, yeah. I know.” He turned back to the kids. “Some people won’t understand about our family, and that’s not your fault. But most people will be your friends, and it will be fine.”

Sammy almost whispered. “What if they’re mean to us?”

“Then you deck ‘em,” Trent said.

“Trent!”

“Okay, okay. Don’t hit anyone. You just tell your teacher.”

“And what will she do?” Danny asked.

“They will talk to whoever is being mean and tell them they need to stop.”

Danny nodded and Sammy wrapped her arms around Trent’s neck and hugged him. They raced off to their room to grab their backpacks and finish getting ready. Trent watched them as they left before turning Josh with an eyebrow cocked. “You know it’s not going to be sunshine and cotton candy for the kids. This is small town western Oklahoma.”

“I know. We’ve talked about it enough. But it won’t do any good to have them thinking everyone will hate them.”

“We may avoid it for a little while, but they’re going to run into kids who won’t like them just because of us. It kills me that we might be making our kids lives even a little more difficult.”

Trent considered for a moment and shook his head. “We didn’t do anything wrong. Sometimes life is hard, but we didn’t intentionally make the kids have a hard time. I think we’re damn good parents.”

Josh held up his hands in mock surrender. “Okay, okay. You win. Let’s get this wagon train moving.”

The trip to school was uneventful. Sad that the kids were already going to school, and knowing he would miss their times together, Trent knew Josh was right. They would deal with the problems as they came up, and he didn’t need to go looking for issues.

They parked the truck and walked into the building with the twins. They located the classrooms and Josh went with Sammy while Trent took Danny into his room. They walked through the door to find controlled chaos, and a teacher who looked thrilled with it. She waded through the kids to greet them.

“Good Morning, I’m Mrs. Anderson. And who might you be?”

“I’m Danny.”

“Nice to meet you, Danny. I think we’re going to have a great year. Let me show you where to hang your backpack.”

Danny took her hand and crossed the room to put up his bag. Once that was accomplished, Danny stood watching another little boy who was busily building…something.

“Hi. I’m Danny.”

“Hey, I’m Ryan. You want to help? I’m building a castle.”

Trent grinned, relieved that at least one of the twins had found a friend. The teacher walked back and motioned him into the hallway.

“He’ll be fine. He’s already got a buddy in the class. Don’t worry about him.”

“Oh, he’ll be worrying until this afternoon when he picks the twins up.” Trent turned to find that Josh had returned.

“Everything go alright?”

“I think so. Sammy found a little boy and when she told him she has her own horse, she was his best friend.”

Trent turned back to the teacher and explained. “We have twins. So it’s twice the drama today.”

“So you are…”

“Oh, sorry. This is my husband, Josh.”

Her face froze in place as her flesh seemed to transform to granite when Trent shared this bit of information.


 

If you’d like to see a snippet from the other Wednesday Briefs authors you can go to the groups website. Or click on the name listed below to go directly to the story.

 

Rough draft of novella finished

The rough draft of the novella I was working on as part of my NaNoWriMo is finished. Dust Devils is a retelling of Cinderella and it will be part of the Beyond Fairytales collection from Decadent Publishing. Considering it’s a rough draft, I’m pleased with how it went. Now to put it aside for a few weeks so it will be fresh when I come back to it.

Now I’ll move back to my contemporary western, Camouflage. Luke and Nash have more than their share of problems.

Okay, back to writing!