7 reasons it’s never the same

It’s 6 o’clock and they’re back to being normal.  Or as normal as they can get anyways.  She’s sitting in her pink office chair, writing a paper and he’s on her bed reading for class.  Neither speaks but instead enjoys the serene safety that lingers in the air around them like a blanket.

He turns the page, she minimizes the document window.  A shift in weight, a light sleepy sigh.  She bites her lip in concentration, he shifts and moves his face to rest on his hand.  It’s the same boring…the same dull…the same comfortable routine that neither seems to deviate from out of fear.

If the routine changes, they change.  They change more then they want to, more then they have.  He wants to grow, she wants to hold on to things she still wishes they had.  Yet, neither can move forward without the other.  How? Because here they are, another school night spent together in silence.  Him on her bed, her in her chair.  Both lounging comfortably in the silence they created around them.  The bubble of serenity they refuse to burst with words.

It’s so quiet she imagines she can hear his heartbeat and the feeling of tears and heartache tug at her senses.  Everything about him, every breath, every heartbeat, every single quiet moment shared between the two sends an ache through her heart that it’s obvious will never heal.  His simple, silence presence makes her heart ache for sweet kisses, caresses…love.

I want you to love me, she begs quietly, her eyes lowered to gaze at her keyboard, back to him as he turns another page.  She lets her tears fall and welcomes the dull ache into her chest, letting it swallow her body completely.  She’s so deep into her feelings of loneliness she doesn’t even notice her body begin to tremble, sniffle, sob.  He looks up from his book.

“Why are you crying?” He breaks the silence, his voice incredulous and she snaps out of it.  The ache retreats from her fingertips, her toes, arms, legs, body and back into her heart where it throbs as a constant reminder of loneliness.  She chokes on her words and she hears him shift on the bed, standing and coming to her side.

“Why are you crying?” His voice is harsh, sharp around the edges and her body trembles out of fear.  He must already know he’s the reason because there’s no other reason for her to sob so violently and without abandon.  For the thought of the times when he was her everything, when she mattered…before she was irrelevant and cast aside like a rag doll.  She longed for him to pick her back up, to smooth out the aches and sew up the tears.

But here she was, sitting here with his breath in her ear demanding to know the reason for her tears.  Demanding to know why on earth she would even be crying.  Why she even had the right to cry at any moment whatsoever.

“Tell me,” he whispers as he rubs her shoulders…presses his body against her back.  His comforting warmth flows from his stomach into her body.  Every single thing about him was perfect.  If it wasn’t for the fact that he didn’t love her.  If it wasn’t for the annoying fact that he never would.  If it wasn’t…

Her heart ached again, deeply, throbbingly as he touched her shoulders, her back, her arms…her throat.  Body shaking beneath his fingertips with an ache that only he could fulfill.  He whispered her name and asked her again.

And She Still Wouldn’t Answer Him.

How to write better Amazon reviews

Hey guys! Recently I’ve run into a lot of people asking me how to write better reviews on Amazon for books they’ve read from fellow indie authors.

But the thing about reviewing books is, unless you’re running a review blog, you don’t have to do much!

My reviews are long and wordy because I’ve got a lot to say (plus I write reviews for books here on my blog as well, so I like to try and sell those books to my readers).

But if you’re not doing that, here’s my easy-peasy four-step process for writing Amazon reviews (and getting them approved by the powers that be):

1. Don’t use any profanity (Amazon won’t publish foul language)

2. Abide by that ridiculous $50 purchase rule (it sucks, I know)

3. Cross-post your reviews to Goodreads (it seriously helps!)

4. A little goes a long way! Your review doesn’t have to be a novel. A few sentences would be just fine. Leave the writing to the authors, just make sure they know how much you appreciate their hard work!

If you don’t know what to write, a simple “This was really good! I can’t wait to read more by Author name” will suffice.

Or, if you didn’t like the book, feel free to give constructive criticism. I personally read every review I get to try and improve my work. Some of them can be really harsh, so try not to outright attack the author, but be sure to point out anything problematic so they can fix it in the future.

And that’s it! That’s all it takes. Reviews aren’t rocket science and it’s something really easy and really nice you can do to help an author you admire to succeed in the market.

Writers be like…

  • Friends who don’t read: I don’t understand. Why would people hate you because of your writing?
  • Friends who do read: I FUCKING HATE YOU. YOU’RE A MONSTER. WHEN IS THE NEXT BOOK COMING OUT?
  • Friends who write: Recently I started getting death threats for my latest novel. I’ve reached the big time. I have become one of the top authors in the world. This is my big break.

Short Stories: Apple Orchard

From my upcoming novel, Tranquil.

Lysan had saved her from obscurity. He had whisked her away from a life inside of a tower, protected her, watched over her when her brother could not. He was good to her, but this life never truly felt like hers. She was constantly being painted and plucked and shown off to the public.

“Did you see?” The news often said, “The Lord’s son is dating an elven woman. The Windsor family cannot possibly be as racist as everyone claims.”

Every time the media claimed that it made her chest ache, her inside squirm. She was nothing more than a prop for Lysan’s father Leonard Windsor to win the upcoming minister election.

“Lady Avalon?” Lysan’s bodyguard, Faron says, rapping on her doorframe. Avalon sucked in a sharp breath.

The man was so gorgeous he was almost hard to look at. He wasn’t conventionally handsome, or so she thought. He was sort of hulking, muscular with short brown hair that sat atop his head in a mess of curls if he let it grow too long. His body was covered in scars, including several deep ones on his neck and face. Avalon was head of heels in love with him.

Lysan had his place. She was grateful to him for saving her. Or for at least thinking he saved her. But Faron actually saw her. She was more than a prop to him and maybe that’s how it started with Lysan too, but that isn’t the way it is now.

“Faron,” she said, her whole body softening as he looks at her. She could live in those brown eyes forever. “Are you here to take me to the apple orchard?” She asked.

He quirks a smile at this, making the scar on his upper lip more noticeable.

“Apple Orchard” had become sort of a code between the two of them. There was no apple orchard on the grounds of the Windsor mansion, not really. There were a few apple trees and the first time she had seen them, she’d thought they were an orchard. Lysan and his father had gotten a good laugh out of this, but she had spent her entire life in a tower with other magically inclined people, what was she supposed to think?

This was the first place she had actually spoken to Faron. After living in that tower for so long, she spent a lot of time outside. She was an elf after all, it was sort of their thing to commune with nature (and unfortunately, be magical). He’d been picking some apples from the tree, a soft smile on his face. When he turned and looked at her, his face open and soft she knew she was done for.

The “apple orchard” was the first place she had ever spoken about the tower. Where she talked about all of her resentment for her mother, for her brother, and how she’d felt so caged her whole life. She even felt caged now. He felt caged too.

It was the first place he had touched her hand, ran his fingers all the way from her wrist to her shoulder. Where he cupped her face, their voices lowering to whispers, eyes half-lidded. Where he kissed her.

He offered her his arm, that same coy smile still on his lips. “Let’s go to the apple orchard.”

Fanart: Marjorie Diaz – Cessily & Adorara

Here’s some fanart I did for Marjorie Diaz of Cessily and Adorara. They’ve sort of become fan favorites so I figured I gotta draw my two favorite lesbians. 

(My other favorite lesbian is Lucian because Adorara is bi/pansexual)

More about Marjorie Diaz

Girl meets boy. Girl falls in love with boy. Boy hunts girl for sport.

Marjorie Diaz has no idea who Patrick Watkins is. When he saunters into her senior seminar class during her last semester of college, the last thing she expects is to fall in love with him. 

She’s swept up into a whirlwind—and often times fairytale-esque—romance. That is, until his family kidnaps her and sends her to a place she never thought she would go again. 

Now, with the help of her best friend Lucian Maravalle, she has to run for her life, and try not to think too hard about the fact that all of the important people in her life has been keeping a dangerous secret. A secret that could cost Marjorie her life.

Book one in the Marjorie Diaz series.

Cover art by Ariel LeAnn of Cat’s Paw Media

**THIS TITLE IS LGBT WITH A FULL LGBT AND POC CAST** 

Get your copy here

Tagged: My Writing Journey

I was tagged by Lisa Stapleton to write these three things:

1. Where are you at in your writing journey?

I have a novella and a full-length novel published, and a published anthology piece! I have three more books I’m working on that are done and just need edits. Plus, the new Marjorie Diaz book should come out sometime earlier 2019.

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2. What advice would you give to young writers?   

Don’t be discouraged if you can’t write every day or if you can only write 100 or 500 words a day at first.

Eventually, you’re going to sit down at your computer and be able to write without thinking about it. And eventually, the more you do it, you’ll be able to crank out 1,000 or 10,000 a day!

But it is not without hard work. Writing sometimes feels like a chore or like pulling teeth and you will be stressed out and upset and angry A LOT. But it is so rewarding to put your story out into the world at the end of all that anger and resentment.

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3. Things you need daily in order to function as a writer: 

-headphones
-a snack
-video game break
-my cats

That’s 4 things, but I think I’ve earned them.

About Des: Get to Know Me

1. Real name → Desdemona 
2. Nickname(s) → Des
3. Status → Online
4. Zodiac sign → Leo. 
5. Male or female → Female. She/her.


6. Elementary School → Yes
7. Middle School → Yes
8. High School → Yes
10. Hair color → Red
11. Long or short → Short
12. Loud or Quiet → Loud
13. Sweats or Jeans → Yes
14. Phone or Camera → Yes
15. Health freak → No
17. Do you have a crush on someone? → Sure 
18. Eat or Drink → Drink
19. Piercings → Yes
21. Water or Fire → Water
22. Love of your life or 4 Billion Dollars → Yes

FIRSTS: 
23. First fear → It sure did happen
24. First best friend → Mindy
25. First award → Science
26. First crush → Scott
27. First pet → I did have one.
28. First big vacation → It happened
30. First big birthday → Fifth

CURRENTLY: 
49. Eating → Nothing. 
50. Drinking → Water
52. I’m about to → Sleep
53. Listening to → My SO brush his teeth
54. Plans for today → Sleep
55. Waiting for → This episode of Cougar Town to end

YOUR FUTURE: 
58. Want kids?→ 
59. Want to get married?
60. What careers do you have in mind? Obviously writing.

WHICH IS BETTER WITH GUYS/WOMEN? 
68. Lips or eyes → Sure
70. Shorter or taller? → Sure
72. Romantic or spontaneous → No thanks.
73. Nice Legs or belly?→ Not required
74. Sensitive or loud → Sure
75. Hook-up or relationship → No
77. Drama or Super Shy → No

HAVE YOU EVER: 
80. Lost glasses/contacts → Yes
81. Ran away from home → Yes
82. Hold a gun/knife for self defense → Yes
83. Killed somebody → No
84. Been Heartbroken → Yes
85. Been arrested → No
87. Cried when someone died → Yes

DO YOU BELIEVE IN: 
89. Yourself → Yes
90. Miracles → Yes
91. Love at first sight → No
92. Heaven–> Uh
93. Santa Claus → Eh
94. Sex on the first date → Neh
95. Kiss on the first date → Nooo

ANSWER TRUTHFULLY: 
97. Is there one person you want to be with right now more than others → Yes
98. Are you seriously happy with where you are in life → Yes
99. Do you believe in God → Eh

Writing Advice: How to Write Dialogue

1. Don’t Waste Your Reader’s Time

Dialogue is one of the most important elements to writing a story. Conversation between your characters can make or break a scene. Dialogue should never be to clunky or long-winded. Every line of dialogue needs to be presented with purpose. It needs to further your story or develop your characters. 

Don’t write scenes that lead to nowhere. Dialogue that dead ends without supporting your character’s attitudes or your plot alienates your reader. It is perfectly acceptable to write stupid shit so long as it goes with the tone of your story, but make sure it has a purpose. 

2. Keep Everyone in Character

Dialogue is often where writers tend to do most of their exposition and world explaining in order to avoid pesky info dumps in the narrative. Dialogue is there to support you and push you through to the next part of the story. 

However, any world explaining and exposition you have your characters spouting needs to be relevant to their whole “deal”. 

Don’t have someone randomly start talking about a part of your story you need explained if it doesn’t have something to do with the character explaining it. Keep all of your dialogue and talking points specific to your character’s personality so the lines don’t feel forced or out of place. Everything should run smoothly from one sentence to the next and it should be concise! 

3. Writing Dialects

Generally, showin’ the way people talk is frowned upon, but I say do whateva you want, sugah. If your character has a unique voice that is easily shown by writing things like “’lo” or “’ello” or “showin” or “sugah” then go for it. Don’t let your dreams be dreams. 

However, avoid things that would confuse your reader like m’no’gonnah or other weird apostrophe laded words that could drag them out of the story. Unless your character is Scottish or Australian. Then strange slang and apostrophes abound. Do whatever you need to do to get your dialogue on paper. 

But for the love of god please don’t be racist. 

4. The “Said” Conundrum

A lot of my writing friends swear up and down that you should only use “said” or “asked” while writing dialogue. And that you should avoid using “whispered” or “exclaimed” or “ejaculated” (okay this one you shouldn’t use. I’m watching you J.K Rowling), but I disagree.

Write what feels comfortable for you, but don’t be afraid to use “said” where you can, just not TOO often. I get myself in hot water with my editor over this a lot.

Using words like “whispered” or “exclaimed” or “growled” can bring more depth to a scene. Especially if you’re trying to keep it simple and avoid unnecessary description (like trying to figure out how to explain someone was talking softly by writing “she said in a whisper” or trying to explain how someone is growling or hissing by “she said with a growl” or “she said with a hiss”). 

The point is, write it however you want and fix it later :).

5. Dialogue Should Tell a Story

Dialogue is an important part of your story. It should be able to move the scene on it’s own. If you take out all your words and descriptions, does your dialogue propel the scene forward? Does it tell people more about your characters or your world? Does it offer insight? 

If not then you need to start over. Dialogue scenes are supposed to be dynamic, insightful, funny, maybe even flirty without making people groan or roll their eyes (unless it’s a pun). 

Read your dialogue out loud, have other people read it out loud. If there are any parts you tune out or skip or think are too long, cut them shorter. It anything makes you put your head in your hands and sigh, make it better. 

And as always, keep being creative every single day