I had intended this post to be a tribute to my favorite band, Bon Jovi, where I planned to talk about the novel I’m currently writing and how the music influences the story. As I started writing, however, I realized there are so many things to be grateful for, I couldn’t focus on just one thing.
November is a month to be grateful for so many things. My daughter was born in November (she’s the youngest of 3), my parents married in November, and as a veteran, November 11th reminds me of being grateful for the opportunity to serve my country in the U.S. Army.
As a writer, November is also a month to be grateful for the written word. This is my 5th year participating in – and winning – NaNoWriMo, or National Novel Writing Month. It’s a 30 day challenge to write 50,000 words. This year I hit 50K on November 18th and I’m on track to achieve my highest NaNo word count ever (over 62,000).
My fastest finish, just 12 days, was my second year and it was the novel that is being released in just a few days. The Sound of Circumstance practically wrote itself and from day one the story went in a direction I hadn’t planned. The hero in the book is a U.S. Army veteran, so it was fitting for me to write it in November when we celebrate our veterans and the sacrifices they make for our freedom and rights.
The novel I’m currently writing, Whisper to a Scream, is also about a veteran, a medically discharged female soldier trying to cope with chronic pain, PTSD, and a prescription drug addiction, all the while adjusting to civilian life after twelve years in the army. It’s a story of hope, friendship, love, and forgiveness, and with every word I’ve written I’ve been reminded of everything I have to be grateful for: my family, my friends, my writing, the music I love, and the freedom to live a happy and fulfilling life.
The Sound of Circumstance
Paperback available now on Amazon
Ebook available December 3
Join the release day party of Facebook December 3rd for fun and prizes all day long! https://www.facebook.com/events/1513610498952376/
Barnes and Noble: http://bit.ly/1j5yGPa
To finally leave the past behind, they’ll have to trust … their friendship, and especially their love.
Stacie Nightingale doesn’t what the 2.5 million dollars of blood money she’s been awarded as a result of the lawsuit she filed. She also doesn’t want the memories that are flooding her mind, causing her to remember everything that led to the car accident that killed her friend and left Stacie with a traumatic brain injury. Neither of those circumstances matter though once her boyfriend Owen Landry proposes to her. She doesn’t want his proposal, not due to the circumstances that drove him to it. The mysterious woman he seems to be keeping company only fuels her insecurity and doubt. Stacie loves Owen, but with her past continuing to haunt her, she questions if their love is strong enough to survive.
Owen Landry has been carrying the ring for months, waiting for the perfect moment to propose. He has a plan, but when a gallery owner starts swooning over Stacie – and not just her paintings – Owen once again has to face the demons of his own past. His insecurities spike when Stacie not only refuses his proposal, but confides in her brother rather than Owen. He doesn’t believe she would betray him, but his past has proven he can be a bad judge of character.
“I don't know why I let Ty talk me into this,” Stacie whined, throwing another outfit on the bed. Her closet was a fortress of rags. It was the clothing apocalypse. The black hole of nothing to wear.
“It's not a big deal. I'm sure this gallery guy doesn't care what you wear,” Owen drawled, his amusement completely lost on Stacie.
He focused on his phone, sending another text. At first he claimed to be chatting with his daughter, but when Stacie had tried to see the message, he hid his phone and said they were making secret plans for when Hailey would visit next month. Stacie wasn’t the suspicious type, but after yesterday’s news, and the fact he seemed to be sending secret texts pretty often, she had to wonder if it was Hailey on the other end.
Then again, maybe she was just letting this situation get the best of her. Trying to ignore her insecurities, she focused on her wardrobe calamity. “You’re such an oaf,” she murmured. Stacie didn’t typically resort to name-calling, but desperate times and all that. “I need to make an impression. You only get one chance, right? What says talented, successful author and illustrator?”
“Anything, baby, just pick something before you bury me over here.”
Owen lounged on the bed, dressed in those button fly jeans that always drew her attention to his bulge, and a Seattle Sounders jersey that clung to his toned pecs. His hair was still wet from the shower and since he didn't really believe in using a comb, it was sexily disheveled. Then there were those luscious lips, curved into an amused smile. If she wasn't so aroused, Stacie might find his amusement annoying, but right now all she could think of was skipping out on meeting Gallery Guy and finishing what she and Owen had started last night.
“I should have kept my teacher wardrobe,” she muttered, immediately regretting it. At some point Stacie had realized she dressed like Greg, always wearing slacks – although she had more than just khaki – and a nice, conservative shirt. Her teacher wardrobe was horrible. Thank Gatsby she'd left it all at Goodwill on her way out of Maine.
“Maybe I should wear this,” Stacie said, holding up the almost nothing of a black dress Jenny had given her a year ago. The dress bordered on slutty and memories of how Owen had taken her right up against the wall, still wearing the dress and strappy heels, flooded Stacie’s mind.
“You wouldn't get past the bedroom door,” Owen said, the smile leaving his face.
Good, mission accomplished. She had his attention and maybe memories of that night would make him want her now.
Stacie leaned back against the wall. “Why's that? Because you'd do me right here?”
The little growl was subtle, but deep enough it couldn’t be missed. “You know how I feel about that dress.”
“Remind me,” Stacie said.
Big dreamer and certifiable overachiever Susan Ann Wall embraces life at full speed and volume. She’s a beer and tea snob, can be bribed with dark chocolate, and the #1 thing on her bucket list is to be the center of a Bon Jovi flash mob.
Susan is a nationally bestselling, multi-genre author of racy, rule-breaking romance and women’s fiction. Her bragging rights include nine books in three different series, three perfect children, adopting an amazing rescue dog, and a happily ever after that started while serving in the U.S. Army and has spanned nearly two decades (which is crazy since she’s not a day over 29).
In her next life, Susan plans to be a 5 foot 10, size 8 rock star married to a chiropractor and will not be terrified of large bridges, spiders, or quiet people (shiver).
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