#WIPpetWed #AppalachianElementals 1/23/2019: Black Polish

Another week down,  another what might well be a novel started. I’m working on Conall and Bea’s story, but it’s quickly taking on a life of its own.  We’ll see, but I think at the very least it’s going to be a long novella if not a short novel.

Welcome to #WIPpet Wednesday*, a blog hop where authors share from their current works in progress (WIPs).

This week I’m picking up where we left off in Chapter Two.  Birdie, one of the homestead’s house spirits, has faded from view and now Betty is doing something that’ll help Cent make a memorable entrance into the Hunter kingdom.

Here’s my #WIPpet math for 1/23/2019: 1 and 2+3+1=6 for sixteen paragraphs from Keeping House.

     “Give me your hand.” Betty grabbed a bottle of nail polish from the table behind the sofa. “I want to mark you too, but my magic isn’t the same as Tess and the spirits’, so I’m sending you off with those black nails you said will make Dane wicked mad.” Betty shook the bottle and laid a rag over her thigh. “But according to Stowne, the Hunters wear a lot of black already.”

Continue reading

#WriteLGBTQ #WIP #KeepingHouseNovel Glass

#writeLGBTQ #KeepingHouseNovel
The theme is glass. Raise your glass. Those in glass houses… There are many different phrases using the word, but I’m focusing on wavy glass or the view out a wavy glass window.




The Brigid sabbat meant the beginning of Spring, new life, new… Cent looked through the homestead’s wavy-glass windows at the snow-covered hillside. Far more than a skift, the snow had been half-way up her calves when she’d gone to the trailer for a shower early that afternoon. She didn’t care what her Wheel of the Year calendar said. This was the dead of winter.

#writeLGBTQ #AppalachianElementals #KeepingHouseNovel

#WIPpetWed #AppalachianElementals 1/9/2019: Birdie on the Move

I’m this close to having Keeping House ready for my beta readers, one more read-through close if that makes it easier to understand. So close I can see the end, and it’s rather frightening. What do I do next? Write something new, yes, I know that, but I’ve so many ideas (AKA plot bunnies) hopping through my head that I’m not certain which one to choose. Interestingly enough, all my current ideas apply to the Appalachian Elementals series.

Welcome to #WIPpet Wednesday, a blog hop where authors share from their current works in progress (WIPs).

We finished Chapter One last week so this week we’re delving into Chapter Two. Remember Cent’s friend Betty? She’s back, and she’s been working hard to help Cent get ready for her time with the Hunters.



My #WIPpet math is as follows: 1/9/2019  9-1=8, meaning eight paragraphs from Keeping House, novel two in the Appalachian Elementals series.

ONE NOTE: If you haven’t read Cleaning House, there’s a spoiler in here regarding Betty.

     “Thanks for altering my clothes.” Cent sat beside Betty on the sofa.

     “Anything for you, baby doll.” Betty smoothed her blue fleece sweater over the front of her denim maxi skirt. Tall and super feminine, she moved with grace no matter what she did, but that was Betty. “Since I’ve got a sewing machine again, I’m going to make us lots of stuff.” She pointed to the collapsible sewing table setting in the corner. “Best Christmas present I ever got.”

Continue reading

#WriteLGBTQ #WIP #KeepingHouseNovel Glare

#writeLGBTQ #KeepingHouseNovel
The theme is glare, something my characters might be doing a bit too often. Thank goodness for revisions. And, yes, Dane Gow has a definite attitude problem. She’d tell you it comes with being king, but it’s probably her abrasive personality more than anything else. (Pyre is a fire elemental, BTW.)


     “I’ll give you a pass on that one, you flamin’ turd, but don’t ever roll your eyes at me again.” Dane thinned her lips as she turned from Pyre. “I’m in a good mood tonight.”

     “Don’t threaten my family.” Cent glared at her.

     “But you ain’t doin’ a damn thing to keep it that way.” Dane returned her gaze, adding a tiny smirk.


#AppalachianElementals #KeepingHouseNovel #Paranormal #Fantasy

#WIPpetWed #AppalachianElementals 12/12/18: A Flick of the Magical Hand

So it dumped snow here over the weekend, a southern storm, the perfect setup to pretty much stop things in their tracks, but it’s already hit the ugly, crusty stage of melting, and most of it will be gone in the next forty-eight hours, with possible flooding because of the quick melt.

Welcome life in Southern Appalachia. We’re not built for snow except at the highest elevations and quick thaws make for flash floods.

Welcome to #WIPpet Wednesday, a blog hop where authors share from their current works in progress (WIPs).

This week I’m picking up from where I left off in Chapter One of my WIP Keeping House, novel two in the Appalachian Elementals series. This chapter is titled “Leave Taking” because that’s what the MC Centenary Rhodes is doing, leaving home and her new life to honor a deal that her lover, Stowne, struck in order to save her life. Sure, Cent’s happy to be alive, but the rest… She’s currently wondering about the dagger Stowne has just given her.

Here’s my WIPpet math for 12/12/18:  8+2+2+1 = 13 short paragraphs from Keeping House, Chapter One.

I’m also sharing one of my preliminary covers for Keeping House. I take great care in my covers, so if I’m sharing it’s because it’s nearly complete and has received the spousal seal of approval.


(Note: The section in orange comes from last week’s WIPpet.)

…“You didn’t deal for this…” Cent’s mouth tightened. “Did you?”

Continue reading

#1LineWed #amwriting #WIP Shop

Here’s another short-‘n-sweet  #1lineWed post. The theme is shop, very appropriate since Black Friday and Cyber Monday have just passed. While this line might not be exactly what the host intended, the word has many different meanings, this one, a noun, being how I use it most often in this #WIP. The excerpt comes from Keeping House, novel two in the Appalachian Elementals series and one of my current WIPs.

    “I already took them to the back.” Eddie nodded toward the shop door. “Headin’ home?” He drew his eyes from Dane to Cent, where they lingered. “You look like you done seen ol’ Scratch ridin’ a Harley.”

#WIP #amwriting #KeepingHouseNovel


Author #Selfcare: How not to be Triggered by the Crazymakers in “Safe” Online Communities

TW/CW: Emotional Abuse Discussion


Why am I sharing this experience? Clarity. My directly addressing what happened makes it easier for me to put aside.

So I admit it, I was recently triggered by someone online. It happens, particularly to people with PTSD like myself, but what slays me is that it happened inside what’s supposed to be an online “safe” space, a private, membership-via-application community.

My biggest trigger is easily crazymaking behavior. Why? Because it creates a no-win situation for the victim. I lived with that behavior from an ex for over a decade then again with an adult child who learned the behavior from said parent, and it taught me to doubt every choice I make, to self-blame, to doubt my own sanity.

Needless to say, neither of these people are in my life anymore. (Don’t judge where the adult child is concerned. When the abusive behavior of someone you love is making you physically ill, it often becomes a save-yourself-first scenario. It wasn’t an easy choice, believe me.)

Here’s a further explanation of crazymaking behavior from Psychology Today (link at the bottom of this post). Continue reading

#1LineWed #amwriting #WIP Betray

Here’s another short-‘n-sweet  #1lineWed post. The theme is betray. This excerpt comes from Keeping House, novel two in the Appalachian Elementals series and one of my current WIPs.




Cent knew those voices as well as she knew the lights. How could you? She watched because she couldn’t look away, because she had to make certain the betrayal was real.

#WIP #amwriting #KeepingHouseNovel





#AppalachianElementals #FictionFri The Rhodes Family Tree

One of the major themes in the Appalachian Elementals series is family. It was central to  Cleaning House, to Mama, Me, & the Holiday Tree, and is central to Keeping House, my current work in progress. Family is also, like in many cultures, central to Appalachia. We’re traditionally close-knit, though that has somewhat changed over the last few generations. That said, I might, at a later date, take a closer look at Tess and Roslyn Rhodes’ generation (meaning write a story where they’re the MCs, but that’s for another day since I’m currently neck deep in #NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month).

When Cleaning House was a rough draft, I scrawled out the Rhodes’ family tree as it relates to Cent and her cousin, Aubrey, adding details like birth/death dates, where the magic derives from in each family member, if there’s any magic at all, and ended up with four-five generations (depending on your take), going back to Cent and Aubrey’s great-great-grandmother Amadahy, a fictional member of the North Carolina Cherokee tribal rolls (one of my own ancestors, six generations back, is listed on those same rolls, I’ve been told).

Anyway, that initial scrawl to set down a lineage has become the graphic below, an actual family tree.

Creating the family tree helped bring the characters to life, to give them roots. It helped me determine how they might have thought, their experiences,  how things developed between generations and, more specifically, where things have gone wrong. Continue reading