Excerpt: The Only Question That Matters (WIP)

Happy new year, lovelies! I’m alive and beavering away at a little something I hope to have ready for you next month. Don’t hold me to that, though. I’m digging deep for this one and don’t want to rush it.

It’s still in its first draft stage, so please excuse any rough edges, but I couldn’t wait to share what’s coming up. Here’s a little taster of my latest book, The Only Question That Matters.

The music stops. The whirring fades as twelve spinning wheels slow to a stop. At first, I think I’ve fucked up and my face and neck are warm — warmer than they would normally be after a spin class. When he leans over the handles instead of looking at me, I think maybe he just didn’t hear me. I’m not sure if that’s better or worse. I step off my bike, but before I can leave, his hand is on my arm.

“Wait.” The word falls out of him between breaths. He is drenched in sweat and the heat emanating from him ripples the air around the surface of his skin. He squeezes my wrist while he holds his head in one hand, shoulders rising and falling.

The studio walls glow with a dewy light. It’s morning, almost our last. Just under twenty-four hours until the ship reaches Planet Paradiso, the end of my journey. Or perhaps the beginning. But Alexei will take the return trip home — wherever his home is. The universe is a big place. We may never see each other again.

And so, even if I wait for the answer to be no, I suppose I am glad to have asked. I would have opened by asking him, will you go to bed with me? But we barely know each other beyond light conversation and laughter, three times a week or less. A spin class here, a yoga class there — jokes and commiserations, captured in forty-five minute snapshots and passing glances in the establishments around the ship.

After one final, deep breath, Alexei looks at me. His eyes hold a smile that connects us before it travels to his lips. His hand moves to my hand and he gives me another squeeze.

I’ll keep you posted on this one — stay tuned on Twitter or Facebook.

Plans for 2018

Now that the tour is over, I’ve have time to think about what I want from 2018. This year has been big for me — I released a novella and three short stories, learned a lot about publishing and a bit about marketing, and most importantly, discovered what I do and don’t like about the craft and trade of writing.

This is what really floated my boat 💖🛳

  • Connecting with readers and other writers over my work
  • Getting lost in craftsmanship and storytelling
  • Learning new things (like astronomy, psychology, ornithology, bondage)
  • Learning about my sexual and intellectual proclivities
  • Discovering new books and authors

And here’s what I found kind of a drag 💔⚓️

  • Noisy social media marketing
  • Too many newsletters (sending and receiving)
  • Having less time to write stories because I needed to prepare promo materials
  • Having less time to read stories because I needed to prepare promo materials
  • Having less time to chat with my new reader and writer friends because I had to make up for lost writing and reading time

In a perfect world, I’d manage my time better and keep my shit together. But this isn’t a perfect world. The author writing the book of my life has decided this is my character’s ultimate conflict, and no amount of time with a hot alpha male irl will get me through this. I have to toughen up, jump that fence and learn to hit the ground running.

On top of all this, I realised this week that the one thing my readers have consistently asked for is longer stories — even when it comes to stories intended to be short.

They told me my worlds were compelling and they wanted more — more drawn-out interactions, more descriptions about the mechanics of the universe, more more more. This shits all over my insecurities over world-building and my fear that people will find my work too rambly. Of course, putting out longer stories means really getting my act together, so…

Here’s what I’m definitely doing in 2018 💪🏼

  • Newsletter 👉 Mailing list
    Dot Dot Dot is adopting a quieter style. No more monthly issues. To save time for me and my readers, dotters will now only hear from me when I have a new hot read for them to sample or to enjoy in its entirety. Subscriber treats will get distributed by this mailing list, so make sure you’re on it.
  • Getting more social 👯
    Let’s connect more over this blog, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram because, honestly, it’s just easier. I love the personal nature of email, but the instantaneousness of social media makes more sense for news and other timely things. Want to hear about my latest releases and when a subscriber treat comes up via the mailing list? Read this blog, get social with me and find out.
  • Releasing longer stories 🌱
    I love short stories and flash fiction. I love conveying an idea in as few words as possible. I played with it a lot this year, and now I want to try expanding on this. Can I tell a story five times as meaningful with only twice as many words? I think so. Follow me and see.

And here’s what I’m hoping to do in 2018 🤞

  • Release 2 novels — they’ve been WIPs for so long
  • Start the sequel to Chasing Sisyphus 💎
  • Release a lesfic, because I don’t fly my rainbow flag often enough 🏳️‍🌈
  • Finish a new short story especially for my lovely dotters

Thank you, my lovelies, for all your support, encouragement, reviews, purchases, comments, emails and banter on social media this year. Here’s to a beautiful holiday season for you and your loved ones 🎄


Img via StockSnap (CC0)

Blog tour: Day 10 — Interviewed at Books and Banter

Book cover for Chasing Sisyphus by JL Peridot

For the final stop on the tour, I’m bantering with Loc Glin about books, inspiration, life and writing.

👉 Read now: An interview at Books and Banter

Remember to answer the Day 10’s question for a bonus entry in the giveaway draw. Entries close very soon — stay tuned for the draw results over the weekend.

Thank you for following the Chasing Sisyphus Blog Tour, organised by Writer Marketing Services.

Book cover for Chasing Sisyphus by JL Peridot

Chasing Sisyphus is available now via Amazon, Kobo, B&N, iTunes and Bookstrand.

Blog tour: Day 9 — Writing sex scenes

The tour is almost over! Today, I’m on More Books Than Livros, talking about writing sex scenes that work. I love crafting a good scene and I could ramble on all day about this, but I didn’t want to overstay my welcome.

I’m super stoked that Chasing Sisyphus got a positive review too! Have a read. Think sexy thoughts with me.

👉 Read now: Details, anchors — writing a sex scene that works


Img via Alexa Mazzarello (CC0)