As I’ve previously mentioned here and on social media, since I have found myself way ahead of schedule in drafting my main urban fantasy/paranormal thriller series, The Adventures of Sam Hain, I have decided to take a break from the darkness surrounding her future and write a fluffy, sweet paranormal romance. Yes, a vampire is involved. Yes, it’s queer. And sapphic. Currently, the working title is Petals on the Page.
So how’s it going? Well, it’s a lot slower of a writing process than my main series. Part of that is due to this being a completely new style of writing for me. Have I read romance novels before? Yes, quite a few. But other than Carmilla’s Ghost, I haven’t really written anything other than fanfiction where romance was a major element of the story. Also, Sam Hain’s story and world are things I’d been mulling about in my head for almost ten years before I started writing them down.
That said, Petals on the Page is coming along. I’ve drafted two chapters of it, and we’ve reached the “Meet Cute” scene. You know the scene? The Main Character and the (Not Yet) Love Interest meet for the first time. There’s a spark of chemistry, but either one or both parties deny its existence. Perhaps they’re not yet ready for a new relationship. Perhaps they don’t have time. Perhaps the other person doesn’t meet the description of what they think they truly desire in a partner. Perhaps circumstances keep them apart.
The hardest part about planning a romance-focused narrative for me is focusing on the romance. The search for love is the plot, and the conflicts revolve around that. Sure, Carmilla’s Ghost became a romance novel, but that was an accident. The plot focused on Sam learning about and uncovering the plot that framed Carmilla for the murder of her last human lover almost two centuries before the events in the book. The fact that I actually hit all the beats of a modern romance was purely accidental. Now that I’m intentionally doing this, it’s a challenge. And my ADHD is loving it…so far.
That said, I think it’s a good exercise at the very least to try and write something out of my comfort zone. I want this romance to read as part of my style but be clearly distinct in tone and substance from my main body of work. Did I follow my normal routine of outlining? Yes, but I find myself second guessing plans, changing character backstories, and moving the pieces around with greater frequency. This book will probably require a lot of revision and beta reading. Volunteers welcomed for the latter.
That’s where things stand on this project. I’m hoping regular weekly or bi-monthly updates on my progress will keep me moving forward. I’m curious to see where this ends up.
My debut novel, Liam’s Doom, is on sale at all major and minor retail outlets from Amazon to Barnes & Noble to Bookshop.org. I request that you support Bookshop.org, as their site supports local and independent bookstores. The eBook is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and through my webstore.
Carmilla’s Ghost is now on sale. The paperback version is available all major online retailers, including Amazon, Bookshop.org and at Barnes & Noble. Currently, eBook pre-orders are only available at Amazon and through my webstore.
It Hungers (formerly Stone Cold), the third book in the series is currently available for pre-order as an ebook on Amazon. Paperback preorders go through my website and will all be autographed! The book will officially release on 3 May 2022.
My prequel novel, Blood/Lust is also available as an Amazon exclusive.