My Stop on a Blog Hop

I volunteered as tribute to take a ride on a Blog Hop and post my answer to four questions about my writing process along with assorted and sundry links. I am connecting my very brain to the interwebz . . .

Blame it on  J.D. Rhoades, author of Lawyers, Guns, and Money. Great legal thriller. I made the decision to go with first person POV in my manuscript after reading the breezy snarky style of Rhoades' main character.

I'm a noobish compared to most on the blog circuit, but here goes . . .

1.  What am I Working On?

The manuscript of my first novel, with the unimaginative working title of Jewel, is on the query-go-round as I speak. The typical number of rejections, some curt, some nice, and some otherwise have accrued, but I have fulls with several top drawer agents as I learn my way through the process.

Jewel is a thriller/romantic suspense that gels down to:

Attorney Juliana Martin has a devil's choice. She can partner with the FBI to betray a client or watch her father go down for a capital murder he didn't commit.

While I wait and refresh my email inbox, I am working on the second book in the series. Ride the Lightning is set on the Gulf Coast and opens with:

I always knew my law degree would pay off. I was promoted to manager of the strip club outside of Biloxi in less than three months.

RTL brings back FBI agent Ethan Price and gives me the chance to type the immortal line:

I told them I was banging the bartender. 

2.  How Does My Work Differ From Others of its Genre?

I didn't feel the need to have a particularly happy ending. I resolve the plot, but no ending where the main characters fall into the white-hot passion of a thousand sexy suns. Both characters are physically scarred and emotionally bereft, with only hope left in Pandora's Box.

Juliana, my female lead is certainly smart and sexy and knows her way around a shotgun, but the similarities with pleather-clad super-human Amazons ends there. For all of her brashness, she is also a mass of tics and insecurities.

Throw in tattoos, muscle cars, a Toyota camper, and a Chihuahua named Simon and I believe I've created an entertaining mix.

3. Why Do You Write What You Do?

I am a lawyer who has worked both sides of the criminal aisle, domestic violence advocacy, Legal Aid, and child support prosecution, so I filtered in plenty of anecdotes.

Also, just observation around my small town. One scene came from watching a cowboy work the room at my favorite diner while he was having breakfast with his buddy:

"He broke up with her yet?"

"I dunno. Be a shame. His women are always classy. Crazy, but classy."

"This one ain't classy."

You can't make stuff like that up.

On my recent vacation, I was delighted by the number of outlaw motorcycle clubs I came across at truck stops and diners. As a middle-aged woman (read "invisible to all men,") I got to watch, listen, and learn.

4. How Does My Writing Process Work?

I struggle with time management. Shit got weird the last few years. No excuses, just the truth. But, I continually improve and work on writing every day.

I don't outline compulsively, but I do lay out a 3-Act structure. I know on what points I want the acts to turn and write to them as checkpoints. For example, in Jewel, I knew the first act would end when she opened the door at dawn to find the FBI standing on her doorstep.

My favorite blogs for writing inspiration and technique are The Killzone, Terribleminds, and Query Shark. I can always go to these sites for a kick in the pants and solid insights.

5. The Social Stuffz:

On Twitter, I am @TerriLCoop

I spend entirely too much time on Facebook, so drop by and enable my reality avoidance

This blog doubles as my website and is my take on writing, media, books, and collecting kitsch

As Jewel is still at the manuscript stage, I don't have cover photos or buying links. Instead I will close with a pic of Foxy, my editing partner and model for Simon. Thanks for stopping by!

I think Simon needs more lines in Act II. What's my motivation?


Janet Reid said…
Remember her name. She's gonna be famous!