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I have one of these perpetual motion cat-toasts in the back room, and I hook myself up to a helmet powered by it when I sleep. It’s where I get both the story ideas and the energy to write my books.

I wish.

Unfortunately, neither ideas, energy, or the time are quite that easy to produce. You have to make them all. And by that I mean I sit down with a notepad and a pen and I make ideas. I decide to wake up and write even when I really don’t want to, or type away in my Scrivener document when all I really want to do is sit down with a back of hot-cheetos and binge the new season of House of Cards. That’s how I “make” time and energy.

Don’t take no for an answer. That’s why I love NaNoWriMo. I’ve always enjoyed telling stories to myself, but when I heard of NaNo as a teen, I immediately decided to jump in and start writing a bit more seriously. It took me a few years to finally finish a book, and that was facilitated by having the whole novel plotted out ahead of time, but that’s a story for another post.

Along with the forums, the Pep Talks really helped me. It’s that believe-you-can attitude that I think a lot of people need more dearly than they know, along with the motivation of knowing that hundreds of thousands of people around the world are doing this crazy thing along with you.

If there’s something you want that you don’t have, something about the way you’re living your life that’s not making you happy… STOP.

Sit down and figure out WHAT you want, figure out HOW you’re going to get it, and then go DO it. Otherwise nothing will ever change. And that’s the scariest thought I can imagine, because time is going to pass whether you’re living how you want to or not.

This month, I’m writing Gods of Rust and Rot, the second book in my Seeds of Chaos series. I’m working hard to create ideas, energy, and time, and I’m loving every second, because this is what I want to be doing. Hopefully, I’ll be able to publish it by the end of January, or perhaps February. That thought is worth having to wait to binge House of Cards. It’s also the thought that serves as my perpetual motion cat-toast.

Do you have a dream, a goal, something you want out of life? What is it? Is it something you haven’t gone after yet, or are you working toward it? Tell me about how you guys are making your own cat-toast, to power the life you want.

Gods of Rust and Rot is in production! Which means I’m writing it.

It took me a while to get the plot for this book all worked out, and I’m still thinking about tweaking things here and there, but the writing has been started, and I’m already getting into some cool stuff. It’s funny how even though I know what’s going to happen, I still get excited and experience the swings of emotions as I write the story, following events in my imagination. The ability to experience other people’s lives like that is a huge reason why I love to write, and I expect it is the same for many authors.

snoopy-writing-is-hard

I figured you guys might be interested in a quick glimpse into what I’m doing. So, I figured I’d give you an advance look at a small snippet I’ve written. Keep in mind, this is first draft, not even close to a final, publishable version. In fact, this might not even end up in the published book, but it’s part of my process.

I’d been waking up with nightmares, from nightmares, for a while. Some times it was the monsters of a Trial coming for me, ready to rip me apart and dance in my entrails. Some times, it was the last time I saw my team member China, as the light went out of her eyes and she died. And sometimes, the nightmare had no form. It was the creeping mass of decay and putrification devouring everything in its path. A shudder, a feeling, a smell. A sickness.
I woke up from a nightmare about the sickness, choking in my own blood. I shot out of the little cot tucked into a hole in the side of the wall, spitting the iron-tasting liquid onto the floor in a dark splatter.
My superior eyes were already adjusted to the tiny amount of light in my box-like room, and I scrabbled to my feet, lunging into the bathroom and trying not to make any more of a mess.
It was probably getting suspicious to the cleaning crew. I mean, how many times would they find and erase my blood splatters before they stopped thinking I was perpetually on my period and wondered instead if I was cutting myself. Or worse, until they suspected the truth.
I hopped into my shower, one of the few luxuries afforded team leaders in NIX, and turned on the water at a temperature most kindly described as “scalding.”
I spit, and coughed, letting the water wash away both the dark, thick blood, and the lingering creepy feeling from my nightmare. The blood didn’t surprise me. I must have started spontaneously bleeding from my nose into my throat and lungs while sleeping on my back. It wasn’t the first time.
Birch, my literal monster of a pet, called to me from the doorway to the shower, his meow scratchy from sleep.
“It’s getting worse,” I murmured.
He padded past the open shower door and under the spray of water, then licked my knee and peered up at me, his second eyelids closing to keep out the water. Though he might have looked like a cat, one with wings that is, he didn’t have the aversion to water that domesticated felines did. No, he was a predator, even if still just a cub.
I’d spent the past weeks in NIX’s compound, doing as they wanted and keeping us all safe. The team was alive and my brother was being treated for the Seed he’d taken into his system. My new power assured it. I’d also been struggling to manage and suppress the side effects of that power.
But it was obvious that I was failing. The bleeding kept happening, as my body broke down faster than it could heal itself.
“I’m afraid,” I whispered down to my little companion, knowing that he couldn’t reveal my secret, and the rushing of the water would cover any other surveillance. “I’m dying. I’m really dying.”

If you guys would like to see more things like this while you wait for Gods of Rust and Rot, sign up for my newsletter. They get perks like exclusive content, advance notice of sales, giveaways of goodies, etc.

So what are you anticipating for Gods of Rust and Rot? Things you’re interested in finding out about, things you’d like to see happen, favorite elements you’d like to carry over from Gods of Blood and Bone?

As the title states, Gods of Blood and Bone (Seeds of Chaos Book 1) is live on Amazon! It’s a bargain already, but if you have a subscription to Kindle Unlimited, you can borrow and read it for free.

I started working on Gods of Blood and Bone September 16, 2013. And finally, after hundreds and hundreds of hours of work, and 22 months later, it’s complete and out in the world! There’s nothing quite like finishing a big project and being satisfied with the fruits of your labor.

I have many people to thank for this, and a few others to stick my tongue out at. (Hah! I did it!) Writing a book is way harder than people think it is. Writing a great book is way harder than that. And starting a small indie publishing company to make sure that book gets to readers the way I want is icing on my proverbial cake. But I love it.

I’m already started on the plotting of the next book, and hope to start writing it soon. Rest assured, it won’t take me 22 months to finish Seeds of Chaos Book 2. 😉 It should be a little over 6 months, in fact. If you’re worried about missing out on the new release, sign up for my newsletter. I’ll let everyone on my list know when the new book is out, and there will be some extra perks exclusive to those people, as well! **cough cough* free advance review copies *cough cough**

Thanks you guys! Now, I’m off to work on the next book.

This is the final version of the cover for Gods of Blood and Bone. I’ll be honest, I’m kinda excited.

GOBB Ebook Cover Experiment450 pix

I did a few iterations of this cover before it all shook out.

 

This is the blurb:

My name is Eve Redding. I am the new God.

I never wanted to become a Player in the Game, never intended for any of this to happen. I was content with my ordinary, invisible existence among the millions of civilians crowding my city. But the monstrous creators of the Game forced me to Play, and I’m the type to cling to life by the tips of my bloody fingernails.

At first, I was enamored by the ability to augment everything about myself−to become smarter, stronger, prettier…better. But after my teleportation to that first Trial−a death tournament held on a beautiful, vicious alien world−I would have done anything to escape the Game.

I needed power to protect myself and those I cared about from the Game and its creators, so I took it. But every deadly choice I made along the way eroded not only what once made me weak, but what also made me human.

I’m currently giving out advance review copies. If you’re interested in getting a free copy in exchange for an honest review at the site of your choosing, sign up for my newsletter on the upper right, or shoot me an email at author@azaleaellis.com

What do you guys think? Eye-catching, enticing, byoot-ee-mus?

Wanna see what the first couple covers looked like? That’s coming soon.