Saturday, July 30, 2011

Summertime and the Living Is (Not) Easy!

    posted by terhand doel

    We've reached the end of another GREAT month in the Lair and I'm thrilled to send July out with a BANG (or is that boom?) by welcoming my good friend and Lair favorite Marie Force back for a visit. The third book in Marie's "Fatal" series, Fatal Consequences, was released this month, along with a lot of other stuff. But I'll let Marie tell you all about it:

    Greetings to the Banditas! Thank you SO much to my dear friend Aunty Cindy and the gang for having me back again to celebrate the release of my new book, Fatal Consequences. This is book 3 in my Fatal Series, which pairs D.C. homicide detective Lt. Sam Holland with U.S. Senator Nick Cappuano. The Fatal books mix romance with politics and mystery, and book 3 has plenty of all three. Here’s a brief bit about the book:

    The murder of two members of the Capitol Cleaning Service might’ve been just another homicide investigation—that is if one of them hadn’t been romantically involved with a married senator from Arizona. Lt. Sam Holland and her team are plunged into another complex case that at first seems open and shut. But as Sam tugs on the threads of the investigation she uncovers a deep, dark Washington secret that threatens the careers of some of the government’s highest-ranking officials. Racing to catch a killer before he can strike again, Sam and her fiancĂ©, U.S. Senator Nick Cappuano, attempt to plan a wedding while her colleague Detective Tommy “Gonzo” Gonzales faces life-changing news.

    It’s fitting that I should end what has been one of the most insane months of my life with my friends at the terhand doel. I definitely need to celebrate that July 2011 is coming to an end. Let me give you the rundown… keeping in mind that Fatal book 4, Fatal Flaw, was due yesterday.

    July began with the final day of the Romance Writers of America conference in New York City. Fatal Flaw was about half done at this point, and not going well for reasons to be discussed later. After sprinting home to spend the Fourth of July holiday with my family, I had to re-pack for a six-day trip to Atlanta for my day job’s annual meeting. Not a word got written on Flaw while my daughter and I were in Atlanta.

    Returning home, we celebrated her 16th birthday and the launch of Fatal Consequences, both on the 18th. That same day, she started driver’s ed from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. for ten straight weekdays. Oh the joy of hauling a sixteen-year-old out of bed at 5:20 a.m., in the summer, for driver’s ed. Around that same time, she got her first real job, working as a hostess in a five-star restaurant in downtown Newport, RI, which is about thirty minutes from where we live. And did I mention my son, soon-to-be 13, is attending sailing camp, also in downtown Newport, but during the day. One kid to Newport in the morning, the other kid to Newport in the afternoon and an 11 p.m. pickup for the working girl. My husband helps, but since I work from home, most of it falls on me.

    Did I mention that we are gearing up at work to move our company’s website to a new platform? To save some money, we decided to hand move all 800 pages and 10,000 linked files and images ourselves. And that started this week , the same week my book is due and the same week the quarterly magazine I edit for work is on deadline. Calgon, where are you when I need you? Thankfully, (and I never thought I’d say this), our designer is running late on the magazine, and it got bumped to next week. There is a God.

    Back to Fatal Flaw, which hung over my head like a shiny, sharp guillotine this entire month. I finished it at 9 p.m. on July 29, the day before it was due. I wrote 18,000 words in three days, and my hands feel like they’re 80 and arthritic. Thankfully, I have three faithful beta readers who were critiquing as I went, which is how we managed to discover. . .wait for it. . . a fatal flaw in the story.

    This is my 19th book, so I have somewhat of a routine by now, but nothing was working, and I didn’t have the luxury of time to blame it on the stress and chaos of my life. The writing was like pulling teeth, and I couldn’t figure out why. Then, when I was 70,000 words into the book, my betas helped me identify a major problem (aka the fatal flaw) in the story. Once I fixed that by writing five new opening chapters—something I have never done before—the writing flowed the way it normally does, giving me an ‘ah-ha’ moment: If the writing is like pulling teeth, something is wrong. Figure out what’s wrong and fix it. My editor and I have chatted about watching out what we name future books so as not to bring the bad karma to the writing.

    To say I am THRILLED that July 2011 is behind me is putting it mildly. I plan to spend August working on that website migration at work and in my free time, catching up on my TBR, lolling about on the beach and my dad’s boat, hanging with my kids and having a bunch of family and friends visit. I am sooooo ready for a break from the pressure cooker. Later in August, I plan to get to work on my fourth McCarthy book and hopefully a Christmas novella for that series. In addition, I have four other books I am preparing for publication, starting later this year: Georgia on My Mind as well as my beloved Treading Water trilogy: Treading Water, Marking Time and Starting Over, so be on the lookout for all of them soon!

    Summertime and the living is easy—or not. Which is it for you? Thanks for coming by and helping me to celebrate the end of the month from hell! I’ll give a copy of Fatal Consequences to one commenter today.

    Keep an eye out for the Sept. 5 launch of the FREE Fatal wedding novella, Fatal Destiny, in which Sam and Nick tie the knot. Until then, I’ll be at the beach!

    Enjoy the beach, Marie! Sounds like you could use a rest!

    Marie Force is the bestselling, award-winning author of the Fatal Series from Harlequin’s Carina Press. The series includes FATAL AFFAIR, FATAL JUSTICE, FATAL CONSEQUENCES and FATAL DESTINY, which is out Sept. 5. FATAL FLAW is coming in February 2012.

    Earlier this year, Marie published her popular, bestselling McCarthys of Gansett Island Series: MAID FOR LOVE, FOOL FOR LOVE and READY FOR LOVE, with more books coming soon in the series. Find out more about Marie and her books at her website: www.mariesullivanforce.com, on her blog at http://mariesullivanforce.blogspot.com, where she runs the weekly Romance & Oreos Book Club, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/pages/Marie-Force/248130827909, and on Twitter @marieforce.
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