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Alyssa Drake Novels

Steamy Romance with a Twist

Journey into the mind of a writer on deadline...‚Äč

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Day 62 - Welcome to the family

Posted by Alyssa Drake on 11 October, 2021 at 13:40 Comments comments (0)

Because I'm introducing Suze (Grammy Sue) as Dr. Jack's sister, that means two things. First, Dr. Jack knows the secret ingredient in Grammy Sue's Easter Chews. Second, he's okay with that.


Worse, he proudly gives a chocolate bunny to Myra before that ingredient is revealed. He does give her a small hint, which she doesn't quite understand, when he invites Myra to live with him permanently.


This bizarre relationship developing between them is that of a father/daughter, since Dr. Jack has no children and Myra has been lacking in parental attention for some time. With her gift, which is telekinesis (in case you didn't figure that out yet), she would be an excellent addition to his murderous family.


Wait until you read Devoured. You are never going to look at chocolate the same way.

Day 61 - No romance here

Posted by Alyssa Drake on 10 October, 2021 at 12:50 Comments comments (0)

Electrified is one of the few stories that I wrote without romance in the plot. I intended to develop a relationship between Dr. Jack and Jill (since that would just be one more unethical line that he would cross), but felt their relationship would need more time to develop, and I didn't want to rush it. There's a hint of their relationship when they make a cameo in Possessed, but again, it's just a whisper, and there is no explanation of why they are together.


I would like to write a story about Dr. Jack, as I'm curious about how he ended up running Briar Glenn, but that's a story for another time. This collection is meant to introduce you to the people around him.


Therefore, after completing the revision of Electrified, I debated how to tie in Grammy Sue from Devoured. She's not a patient, nor is she a sweet, little, old lady, but someone more like Dr. Jack... perhaps his sister.

Day 60 - What did I just read?

Posted by Alyssa Drake on 9 October, 2021 at 18:10 Comments comments (0)

The bridge section between Afflicted and Electrified ended up to be roughly 650 words. I wasn't quite certain how to introduce the story that hovers between reality and fantasy, so I opted for Jill revealing that her treatment had been painful, without disclosing the full ramifications of that statement to young Myra.


My favorite review of Electrified had the phrase "What did I just read" in it, which you'd think I wouldn't like, but it encompassed the feeling I was going for. By the end of Electrified, the reader should question which parts were reality, and which were imaginary.

Mission accomplished.


But, the most important truth revealed in Electrified, is that Dr. Jack is just as deranged as his patients (perhaps more so), which shouldn't surprise anyone. What should cause worry, is how this man is allowed to continue his experiments without notice, because, even on Firefly Island, murder is frowned upon.

Day 59 - I brake for blurbs

Posted by Alyssa Drake on 8 October, 2021 at 20:20 Comments comments (0)

My historical co-write went off to the editing team today, and periodically I see a comment pop up on the document, but I haven't read any of them yet. The idea of a three-round edit makes me nauseated, because the only thought roaming around in my brain is "what if they hate it".


Since I was focused on this series, I took advantage of my obsession and wrote the blurb for book two. I already have all three story concepts for the series written, and the next step after this will be to write the outline (although that endeavor will take much longer). For now, I could commit to writing the preliminary blurb without investing too much of my attention. I'm holding out for when I go through edits again, then I can launch into the outline, and start working on book two.


Tomorrow, it's back to Firefly Island. The next story is Jill's, and it had one of my favorite reviews.

Day 58 - Flexibility

Posted by Alyssa Drake on 7 October, 2021 at 20:20 Comments comments (0)

I am not going to change the Point Of Views in the paranormal/horror collection.


Here's my reasoning:

There are two stories that appear in first person (Afflicted and Devoured), had it been just one, I would have flipped it without thought. But... Devoured was a co-write, and now we've moved into a grey area. Before sending Devoured through an editor, I reached out to my co-writer for confirmation that she was okay with that step. Changing the POV is a major overhaul, and I don't want to lose her voice in the edits. Which means I'm not flipping Devoured, and since I don't want just one first person POV story in the collection, I'm not changing Afflicted either.


Therefore, I read through Afflicted knowing I wasn't changing that aspect, and with that decision made, I enjoyed the story as much as I did when I first wrote it.


I doubt I will actively choose to write in first person again, but I like knowing there are some examples of my ability to be flexible.

Day 57 - Return of the killer haystack

Posted by Alyssa Drake on 6 October, 2021 at 3:10 Comments comments (0)

Haystacks. Those friggin' haystacks are going to be the end of my sanity. Once again, I'm writing in the past, and the hay baler that didn't exist in the Victorian era, or in the Elizabethan era, most certainly doesn't exist in the Middle Ages. Deep breath.


The error is now corrected, and I'm reminded of a line from the Thomas Crown Affair film, "I just like my haystacks, Bobby"... Which I will never forget again.


However, I've spent tonight chasing down and correcting inconsistencies, which means tomorrow I'll start the revision for Afflicted from the beginning of the story.


Oh, and I made a decision about the POV.

Day 56 - We don't eat the patients

Posted by Alyssa Drake on 5 October, 2021 at 14:55 Comments comments (0)

While I told myself I wouldn't limit my words on this introductory chapter, I also didn't want to spend the week working on it, when I know I still have to write Reflected for this collection.


So, instead of expanding on Myra's interactions with Jenny and Crina, I cut them short to allow both ladies to share their tales without influence from me.


By doing this, I used roughly a half-chapter to dismiss one character and bring in the next. Since, I've already decided how I want the next interaction to occur, ending this small section with the line "We don't eat the patients" was a great way to introduce Crina, who happens to be a vampire.


Tomorrow, I have to decide if I'm flipping the two 1st person POV stories or if I'm leaving them as is.

Day 55 - It's not fluff if you need it

Posted by Alyssa Drake on 4 October, 2021 at 19:20 Comments comments (0)

I've hit another snag again. With the revisions for the first story in my paranormal/horror collection complete, I began writing the introduction chapter before beginning the next story.


I did not plan to write a full chapter between stories (I actually had no plan regarding word count), but I'm not going to limit myself to hard number. Therefore, I'm going to write until I've reached a good stopping place. This means I cannot gauge when I will begin revisions on the second story in the collection.


As the night comes to a close, I'm shutting down with 500 words written, and no end in sight.

We'll see what tomorrow brings.

Day 54 - A call from beyond

Posted by Alyssa Drake on 3 October, 2021 at 11:40 Comments comments (0)

According to my calendar, today is the day I originally planned to release this paranormal horror collection, so I'd estimate I'm roughly two months behind on my plans, but I still have hope that I can catch up, and that's what I'm going to do.


Diving into Scorched today was like meeting up with an old friend. I adore paranormal horror, and this time of year always puts me in the mood for something a little scary (or something that makes your brain go... "wait, what just happened?").


The idea for this tale came from a discussion about funerals. A previous neighbor of mine buried her husband with his cell phone. Periodically she would call it to hear his voice on the voicemail recording. That turned into the twisted thought of, "How would she react if he answered?"


Ta-da! Story.


WARNING: Don't get too attached to my characters in this collection, I kill a lot of them.

Day 53 - Faster than a speeding turtle

Posted by Alyssa Drake on 2 October, 2021 at 11:10 Comments comments (0)

When I set out to turn the short story Carved into a full chapter, I didn't realize how quickly that would occur. It took me two days to add roughly 1,400 words, which means that my speed is picking up (or, because I'm working in a world set during current times, I'm not restricted by what the characters have been exposed to or what they are allowed to say - yes, historical does take more time because of the research involved).


However, whatever the reason, I found myself ending this chapter with the phrase "You only killed one beastly aunt..." Which was meant to comfort Myra, but at the same time, leaves the reader with an unsettled feeling as they launch into Scorched (the first tale of the collection).


As I'm looking over the stories I'm going to revise, I remembered that two of them are in 1st person POV. I am not a fan of 1st person POV, most of my stories are in 3rd, however for the purposes of these two tales, the sets requested them to be in 1st person. And now I have a choice, do I convert these stories over to 3rd person, or leave them as 1st and have a blend of voices?


Decisions, decisions...


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